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So today was my 5K.  Before I get too deep in the details, let me set the stage:






Last night my 20 month old daughter began throwing up at 7:30pm.  This lasted until about 10:30pm when she finally was too exhausted to do anything else, except fall asleep to the Velveteen Rabbit - a family favorite.  With the swine flu epidemic (oh, I am sorry - Influenza A H1N1) closing down 4 schools in my town this week, you can only imagine what my mind was thinking.  After a restless night and several trips to the bathroom (I am nearly 5 months pregnant now), I woke up at 6:15 to a yucky raining, windy day - YUCK!  Did I really have to go out there for 3 miles.  When it rains, I go to the gym to get exercise so having to do my event in the rain wasn't exactly how I had this whole thing planned out. 







After fighting off the bliss of leaving a warm bed and a snuggly husband, I made it out of the house, water bottle in hand and ready to accomplish my goal.  I got to the race on time, with plenty of space to park and time to grab a decaf cappuccino.  Yum...
















With 15 minutes still left to stretch, I made my way to the start and chatted with other participants there.  For many it was a first 5K or the tenth 10K for others (inspiring to say the least).  It seemed like in a flash the turnout went from dismal to completely packed by race start.  




















Since I knew I wasn't racing and instead simply a participant, I decided to keep to the back and begin my race once the true athletes had their turn. I was surrounded by hundreds of people who were supporters of the cause, happy to be walking or running in the rain knowing that they were getting exercise AND helping to raise thousands of dollars for the Children's Hospital.  Since my partner (my daughter) was out with the flu, I decided to keep to myself, turn up the ipod and get a good pace going.  It is funny, becuase emotionally I went from not really wanting to be out in the rain, pregnant and cold knowing my daughter was home with the flu; to absolutely loving the moment, happy that I was making the trek and proud of myself for sticking to my goal. 







I ended up having so much fun.  I ran when I could and walked when I needed to get my heart rate back to below 140 bpm.  It is hard to make yourself  slowdown when you are on a roll, but Doc said that I need to stay below 140 so I did my best   Needless to say, I finished the race in under 43 minutes, so I accomplished my goal.  Overall, the program was so much fun and I was thrilled to be a part of it all.  Even with the surprise of getting pregnant -- all in all -- this was an experience that will definitely transpire throughout my life as well as in the coming months, as I hope reading our blog's will also help motivate you!  Good luck to everyone in their upcoming events, I wish you nothing but success.



Before you leave the post - I do have additional photos that I am trying to get into this post, but for some reason, I am not able to select them.  IT is working on it, but for now if you want to see them, please click on the images below (attached).















Cheers' to all and go get em' - signing off - Active_Jess







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Pregnant Training

Posted by Active_Jess Apr 23, 2009


Well ladies - I see that all of you are doing FABULOUS and I am so proud of all of you! Pregnancy has been treating me well have been walking a lot - not running as much as I had previously thought that I would.  I am getting really excited for my event -- my daughter will be with me with stroller in tow.  I have had lots of support from friends and family in my area and have started a group of waling buddies with pregnant people I know. 


I have been working and traveling a ton over the last few weeks, so I apologize for not checking in sooner.  It seems as though that by the time I am done with meetings, all I can do is think about eating and then going straight to bed.  I must say that by the end of a long work day (which is everyday), I am definitely tired and ready to close the computer and crawl into bed.  Now that my travel has mellowed out for the next two weeks or so, I will definitely be writing more



Cheers' to everyone's continued success!

Active Jess



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As those of you who have been following this blog know, I have had a long struggle with bronchitis over the last month and a half.  After feeling like I just couldn't shake the cold, I made my way to the Doctor and before giving me another antibiotic, they asked that inevitable question that freezes every woman's life for one mili-second.... "Could you be pregnant"?  Despite life's current short term economic status, my husband and I decided that we were committed to having our children 2 years apart from one another.  This was the first month that we began "trying" (repeating... "first month").  Sure enough, when I took the pregnancy test, I found out that I AM PREGNANT!!  I was floored; shocked and simply couldn't believe my ears.  We had tried with our first baby for nearly a year and the second came on the first try?  I didn't even feel like I was symptoms this time at all.  Granted, my first pregnancy was pretty smooth, but this had gone completely unnoticed. I guess not being able to shake the bronchitis for so long was the big indicator that I was ignoring all this time.


We are thrilled, and still a little baffled.  Working out really does affect your interpersonal life too I guess! I am really glad that I lost 12 pounds before I found out that I was pregnant too - that is going to make the end result so much better!!  I also love that I started out my pregnancy on a fitness program.  I will be training for my 5K as planned but am altering this blog post to be more about staying committed to an exercise program while you are expecting and the health benefits that you can reap from its rewards.  I am sure that like me, there are many of you out there who are nervous about continuing a training regime when you are just getting back into fitness, regardless if you are already a parent or not.


First - Always consult your doctor! If you are already working out regularly, you will likely be cleared to continue, but only a health professional can recommend how you proceed.  Everyone's journey is so different and no two babies  are the same. Second, drink more water -- I find that I am drinking twice as much as I am used to during my morning classes at 24Hr Fitness.  I have had to decrease the amount of time that I can run, but I have added a powerwalk to keep up my regime. Since I am out there for about 45 minutes or so now, I bring a power snack, just in case I find myself feeling a little low on blood sugar.  Lastly, I always keep an eye on my heartrate.  For me, it is important for my heartrate not to exceed a certain level. If you know what your limits are, you will be able to continue to work out safely and the rewards will be for both you and baby.


I am hear to help keep you motivated and hopefully continue to be the person that you can relate to if you are reading this and in the same boat.  If you have questions, please chime in as I would love to hear from you as us momma's have to stick together!


Cheers' and go get Active today - I know I will.

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The right Stroller

Posted by Active_Jess Mar 9, 2009

So, I have reverted back to walking these days, as I am still fighting off a horrible hacking cough with bronchitis and am headed to the Doc today to make sure that I do not have walking pneumonia. I refuse to not get any exercise so walking has helped me stay mentally motivated even though my body isn't fighting off this terrible cold.


While out over the weekend, I realized that the stroller that I am using to run with Nora with, is really heavy and isn't really equipped for jogging. I have the Quinny Buzz and I LOVE IT, but it does not have a jogging front wheel and I am afraid that I will break the front wheel if I continue to use the Buzz for 3 mile runs, etc. I do not live in the snow so I don't need an aggresive stroller. I'm also looking for something with low financial obligation for a stroller that fits only one child, as I know that I will be having another baby at some point, and will be buying additional strollers then. Does anyone have any suggestions?



Stay Active and Live Healthy - Active Jess



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Strength In Numbers

Posted by Active_Jess Mar 1, 2009


Although it is raining and completely miserable where I am today, I have managed to get myself out there and back in the gym while still fighting off the last little bit of bronchitis.  Other than taking it slow and coughing a little bit through my walk run, I would say that it was pretty good. 



Besides the "regulars" that I see in class every morning, I have begun to notice a few people who are getting out there and starting their journey to bring fitness back into their life too.  I have chatted with a few of them while in line to swipe our gym cards and it is so refreshing just knowing that there are a lot of people beginning their journey.  I am a big fan of having strength in numbers and I thought it would be a good time to remind all of you out there that we are here for you when you begin your journey too.



Stay out there and get Active today









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My progress thus far...

Posted by Active_Jess Feb 20, 2009


Where am I with my progress thus far?  Well, my success with working out is something that I hold very near and dear to my heart.  I went from swimming almost 3 miles a day while I was pregnant to having an emergency C-Section, something that altered the way that I lived my life for the better half of 6 months, to getting totally out of shape and cutting out all workouts from my daily routine. My involvement with the Bye Bye Baby Weight Team, has allowed me to now be able to be working out 5-6  days a week.  This program has motivated me to get out there and do something all for myself.  I look better, I feel better and I am stronger both mentally and physically. 



My surgery with Nora was very complicated; I pulled several ab muscles during my labor and after being pulled and pushed all over the surgery table, I was left wounded in both body and soul.  Since I was in bed for while after I had Nora, it took a lot longer than I had ever expected to get back out there and join the real world again. Like many moms out there, my body was in different places than it was before I got pregnant.  At least when I was big and pregnant, I was pregnant!  Now, every time I looked I looked in the mirror, I felt unmotivated, as if this was just "part of the process" and looking terrible was to be expected.  Sad, I know.... Well, after several months of still enjoying the foods of pregnancy, I decided it was time for change and that it was time for me to get back in the gym and make my changes happen. 



Today, I am suffering from bronchitis (which I just found out about at this yesterday's doc apt), so outside of a minor set back in my daily routine, I am now able to accomplish the following:


  • Daily workouts at 6am and back home before 7:15pm just before the little one awakes

  • Strength training to cross train in addition to running

  • Sit ups - my abs were cut in half but now I can do over 100 sit ups in one session, and my latest feet is 25 sit ups that require you to sit all the way up to your knees!!!!

  • Went from never running to running fa slow jog for 25 minutes straight - still trying to work up to the 30 minute duration

  • Dropped inches in my waist, my face is slimmer and some of pre-pregnancy clothes are beginning to feel BIG on me


Overall, I just feel like myself again.  I do fall into my sweet tooth cravings once in awhile, but I know what it will take to burn it off and if it means that much to me, I will do it!  I like the way I feel, knowing that I am accomplishing my goals.  My goals weren't designed by anyone else - just me - so I only have myself to let down and I am my biggest critic.  Working out brings good energy back into my life--Not just the physical part, but the mental part too.  I find that my work is benefiting from it too!  When I am out on Sales related calls, my nervous energy before a presentation is now replenished with a calm positive energy from my workout and solid / regular eating habits.  When they say that bringing a workout back into your life is a "life change" it is because the results from one activity really do have an effect on your entire life.



It is so great to see the team doing so well and sticking to what they set out to do and I only hope to support all of them! Cheers' to everyone on the program and good luck to those of you out there reading this for that little extra dish of encouragement.  My wish for you is that it is giving you the proof you need to know that you too can make a difference in your own life. Enjoy the weather out there today and start your weekend off right by getting a little exercise in!



Active Jess



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Fighting off being sick...

Posted by Active_Jess Feb 15, 2009


It is so hard to drag yourself out of the house when you simply don't feel good.  My daughter contracted the worst sickness from all the other kids at daycare when we got back from Florida.  Even though she was battling a 104.8 fever I was doing ok...That was up until Wednesday.  I started to feel bad and then by Friday my voice was gone from coughing all night long, and I think I was at my worst.  Valentine's Day was celebrated by staying in bed for the most part, sleeping.  Because I don't feel well, I feel like I am getting thrown off track.  My lungs are short of breath and every muscle in my body aches. 



Today, I was able to get outside before the downpour started today and walked around breathing fresh air, just to get my legs moving and my blood flowing.  It has been pouring where I live so getting outside for a second really helped.  It is unrealistic to say that you can go get 'em every single and when it is time to rest do it.  I am bummed to have missed a few of my runs over the last few days, but took the time to read up on changing things up a little.  I read an interesting article on improving your 5K speed.  Check it out:



As soon as I can go 5 minutes without coughing, I am going to try the short track workouts. If it is raining, there were also a few treadmill workouts that looked rather interesting and worth trying.  Let me know if any of you are changing up your workout and if you like what you are doing.


Stay Healthy and Enjoy the day off tomorrow



Active Jess



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Strength Training

Posted by Active_Jess Feb 7, 2009


I have been strength training for about 3 1/2 months now.  I have to say, I love it!  I definitely feel stronger and can see the difference in my muscle tone since I began all of this.  lately I have been so thankful for the 100 squats that I do in my 24 SET classes and Lift classes, as they are really helping me out with my running game.  Granted, I am not a strong runner and with my bad knees, I am not gearing up to take first place in my 5K, by any means, but when I hit 20 minutes of what feels like endless strides across town, I am not nearly as sore afterwards and I think I owe this to my complimentary gym workouts.



If you are debating adding weights into your routine, I strongly recommend it.  If you can't afford the gym, make a game out of it with the kids.  You will find that they will wear you out and you will get a workout and quality family time in too...It is a win win for everyone!



Active Jess



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Cold Lungs

Posted by Active_Jess Feb 2, 2009


It is pretty cold here when I go for my runs in the morning.  Now, I know the difference between sore "cold lungs" and actually having sore lungs from breathing (or dare I say panting) continuous cold breaths of air.  Is there anything that anyone is doing to combat this?  My run yesterday left my lungs not only cold, but very sore- all day!  In fact, I can still feel them and I haven't gone for a run yet?  Any ideas?



I've tried gum to help steady my breath and I love it - that seems to really work, but I have never experienced anything like what I felt with the cold air yesterday.






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Back from my Vacation

Posted by Active_Jess Jan 30, 2009


Well, for the first time since 2005, I took a real vacation.  I went down the Florida Keys with "Soozal" the newest King40 in the IRC II class.  Most of you are asking what is this?  In short - it is a premiere sailboat that is 40' feet long, fully equipped with the highest level of state of the art mechanics and was sailed by some of the most elite sailors in the world.






We were gone for a total of 14 days - and it was amazing.  Although the weather wasn't as nice as we were hoping, it still made for a great trip.  Once of the coolest things about Key West is that you never drive your car!  We rode bikes everyday, everywhere we went.  It was Nora's first time on the bike and her helmet didn't fit very well so, I was a little hesitant at first. She fell in love with it and pretty soon, I was hearing "Momma bicycle ride" every other minute.  We ate home-cooked meals (made by me and husband and 13 other crew members) so I knew what I was eating and snacking on all the time.  There were the occasional days out to eat once the crew went home and it was just my parents and my family in Key West....but hey, we were on vacation right?









I did walk a lot and rode my bike all the time, so I feel like I was able to keep up my routine.  Becasue it was more or a less a working vacation (cooking every meal for a crew of 13 hungry sailors) I wasn't able to stick to my running routine they way that I had hoped.  Tomorrow morning it is back to SET at 24Hr Fitness and then a good run on Sunday before the Superbowl.  We are HUGE football fans at our house and I don;t know about you, but we are doing what ever superbowl party does and snacking basically all day.  I will do my best to avoid the temptations while the rest of the house indulges :  )



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Getting to the next level

Posted by Active_Jess Jan 16, 2009


I am not going to lie..running is challenging for me. I love the way I feel when I am done, but it is sometimes very difficult for me to mentally motivate to even lace up the sneakers.  As part of this group, we are working with training plans designed by Stroller Strides to train us to reach our goal of running a 5K in May.  My workouts are really going well, but one thing that I was not aware of before I began this journey is that a 10 minute run -- especially after not running for an extremely long time -- is hard to due.  Does anyone have any suggestions about getting to the next level?  How do you get over the hump?



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To Gym or Not to Gym

Posted by Active_Jess Jan 7, 2009

So, I have a gym membership...I have had one for about 3 years now.  Being an ex-competitive swimmer, I have had a very difficult time getting excited or motivated in any way to use this very expensive pass to workout solely inside.  As a native Californian, nearly 98% of my swimming days have been spent outside.  Hence, the reason that I barely use this thing.


In November of 2008, my husband and I decided to take a look at our expenses and with the recession in effect, we eliminated all of our bills that we considered "waste" or "unnecessary".  When it came down to the line item of the gym membership, I baulked.  I couldn't bear the thought of losing what seems like my only option of having healthy, ME time.  Although I wasn't using it as often as I wanted to, I still cherished the idea that I could slip away from everyone and focus only on me for as little as a half hour.  Faced with losing a pass to my own freedom and the chance to be in an environment filled with others like me, I decide to befriend the gym.  



I found a workout buddy...A really good friend of mine who loves to stay fit and is competitive in the Wildflower Tri held in Northern CA every year was looking for a workout buddy too.  Having a friend to workout with isn't necessary, but it does keep you honest and when you know someone else is counting on you to show up, it does make it easier to get out of bed for those 6am workouts!  We started out on the elliptical and then added in the stair master...aghhhh the bloody stair master.  I have to say, that thing must really work because I am literally soaking wet, drenched in sweat when I am done working out on it.  Was that too much info?  Sorry in advance to those who can pass on those details, but it's true! 



After about 2 weeks of rockin' the machines, we decided to branch out and take a class.  We workout at 24Hr Fitness and they offer a wide variety of classes to choose from.  This is where we met Cindy.  Cindy is a 24Hr instructor who teaches 3 different classes/ 4 days a week at am, as well as the person that we look to in order to get us through our morning workouts. She "spins" us on Mon & Wed and kicks our butt with a combination of weights and cardio on Tues & Thurs.  I love her classes, and I am really beginning to feel great and notice a difference in overall strength. 



One of my favorite things about class is that workouts are always different.  She changes up the music, adds in new skills and changes the order of each skill set.  Another great thing is that it's filled with a bunch of other people just like us, trying to have fun while we push ourselves to achieve our goals.  As an added bonus, you can bring your kids along with you and they get to play in the kids room and get a workout too (monkey see, monkey do). Not only that, we workout for an hour, not the short workouts that we were doing on the elliptical or stair master.  Since we are constantly moving around, our whole bodies are getting a strong workout, not just isolated sections.



Bottom line: If you are fighting yourself on making it to the gym and feel like you are paying through the roof for a program that you aren't using, try a class and see if you like it...You may just surprise yourself like I did.



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Intro video is up!

Posted by Active_Jess Jan 5, 2009

Hello to all - Just wanted to let you know that I FINALLY was able to get my camera working again and have successfully posted my intro video for all of you to see. Here is a quick link to the YouTube page with my video as well as everyone else's videos. It is great to see everyone out there and staying motivated after the holidays.


Now that I am up and running (literally) there will definitely be more to come both on the blog and via video.



Go out there and get Active today -- Jess

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Well, the first round of festivities have come and gone, and yes, like many of us out there, I enjoyed sweet treats and a little wine.  Time with the family was amazing but this morning it was time to get back in the gym after a few enjoyable days off!  Spin class was at 6am which is a lot easier to get up and out the door for when I haven't been munching on cookies all week    Needless to say, I made it out the door and out to the car (burr it was cold this morning) and once in the gym, I hopped on the saddle.  I forgot....I love spin! 



Sweating out the toxins got me right back on track and I am ready to face the new year with new goals and is not just a resolution this year -- it is a life change. So for all of you out there who want to take the plunge and get back in the saddle, dive in...The hardest part is at the begging and then it is all downhill from there.



I want to be able to interact with everyone on a virtual level, so I am working on a video to post so that you can get to know me a little better and see the changes that I will go through during this program.  I will have it up at the start of the new year for you to view.


Happy New Year to all and remember to go out there and get Active~Jessica



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And I am....Introduction

Posted by Active_Jess Dec 16, 2008

Hi everyone!


My name is Jessica and this is my first time blogging about, well....about anything! I joined the Bye Bye Baby Weight Team becasue I am finally mentally motivated to get back out there and be physically active again. I had my daughter Nora last August after a surprisingly long labor (22 hours plus 3 hours of pushing...aggghhh) which resulted in an emergency cesarean. Since I had never had surgery before, I had no idea what to expect and definitely under estimated the recovery time that the emergency version of this surgery entailed. Since I was confined to the couch for awhile after Nora was born, I ate and didn't workout at all. I could barely sit up let alone think about running...anywhere, so naturally I got pretty out of shape.



Now that Nora is one and running all over the place, and I am feeling back to normal (if that is possible after having a baby) I want to be the best role model for her that I can be in addition to losing the pregnancy weight. I have been in the gym at least 4x/week over the last month or so and I am excited to start working towards my goal of running my first 5K!! I am aiming for a lifestyle change with this program and hope to continue to participate in events with my family throughout the years to come. Charity is a big part of my life so this year I wanted to register for an event that our whole family could participate in. I will be running and fundraising for the Devil Mountain Run located in Danville, CA on the first weekend of May, supporting Children's Hospital.



I am a team player and look forward to being there for all of you throughout this journey and hope that you are all out there to challenge me as well. I am committed to doing this and am excited to have a team to keep me accountable. Have a great holiday and cheers' to looking great in 2009.




More to come~Jessica









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