Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Yous Eve

This is the night we revel in the year past and plan for the year ahead. If we don't down too much champagne, sometimes we even recall those resolutions. Sometimes, if the planets align and the willpower steels, we will actually follow through.

The past:

2008 was a year of the highs and the middling lows. Nothing spectacular happened, nothing disastrous happened. It was just a year.

The highs included my family, the front end of the year with my health, my accomplishments with flood coverage and not having breast cancer.

The latter half of the year was a bit of a mess.

The dating life died, the weight came back on, work stressed me to the max, my knee injury ended my daily workouts and I am again facing the possibility of cancer.

The future:

2009 will be better. I will be better.

Even if the tumor in my humerus is cancer, I will beat it. I am stubborn and strong, stronger than cancer.

I'll take the weight off again. I will win the Biggest Loser contest in my family and spend the kitty on fabulous new clothes or a long overdue weekend away.

I will make work work for me.

I am going to be more me in 2009. That will probably mean dating will end. I'm only half kidding. I put men off. I don't know if it's simply a case of I have bigger balls than they do or what. But they don't even bother approaching me. Oh well, there loss. (Now I will work on meaning that.)

Find more ways to spend time with Caelen. He is my heart. He rocks. I love him.

Those aren't really resolutions, those are actualities. My resolutions are much more mundane and less life altering - write more paper notes, get out of the state (even for just two days), keep my car cleaner, clean the house once a week (I think there is a theme), wear more color.

So here's to you and whatever your New Yous Resolutions are - may you stand strong against the past and forge ahead to an amazing 2009.

Yours in transition, Kate

Saturday, December 27, 2008

The Stubborn Doesn't Fall Far from the Tree

So, as I have noted (many times) my knee is screwed up. I waited too long and then finally went for assistance.

Now my mom screwed up her knee (ironically doing yoga) and she has yet to seek help. In fact it has been over six weeks and she is in real pain. So much pain that she has canceled Sunday dinner at her house - that is never done.

I have pushed, cajoled and harped on her about getting real help. She finally gave in and went to the chiropractor. However, she says it is catching, so I guarantee she needs to follow my lead and see an orthopedist. She hasn't because she doesn't want to face another surgery.

While I can definitely relate to that, I also know if this was me - she'd drag me to the doctor.

She's trying to pull rank, one of those 'do as I say, not as I do' moments. But she's forgotten something - I'm her daughter, she taught me to be stubborn. I will get my way, even if it takes time. ;)

Yours in transition, Kate

Friday, December 26, 2008

What was that about time?

Another week gone and I haven't posted. I also haven't exercised and I have eaten total crap.

This will all be over soon. I have challenged my family to a "Biggest Loser"-like contest in January. I will not lose at something that was my idea. I refuse.

However, I have to figure out how to do it. I am still banned from running and even biking is killing my knee. There is no decision on surgery because I have other things going on.

That brings me to my shoulder. I went to the orthopedist on Christmas Eve and I am now being referred to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. The doctor says while he thinks it (a tumor in my humerus) is probably benign, he doesn't really see many tumors in adults, in fact maybe one a year. So, he is sending me to someone who specializes in orthopedic oncologist - a doctor who specializes in bone cancer.

My doc is nervous because adults don't usually just suddenly get a tumor. This kind of growth usually happens in kids from 3-15, while they are still growing and producing bone. Adults tend to lose bone mass. I wonder if this will all lead to an admonishment regarding my perverse love of milk?

Mayo will contact me probably next week. I will keep you updated - I swear. No really, I will post. (I know promises, promises.)

Yours in transition, Kate

Friday, December 19, 2008

I'm Struggling with Time

It's the end of the year already and yet, it feels like one of the longer years of my life. I feel days go by so fast and yet they feel long. I am beginning to wonder if I did something to vex Father Time and he has distorted my sense of time as retribution.

This has led to feeling like I am in a warp at work. A fight to figure in workouts, even if they are just upper body. And wondering how the hell my house will be ready for Thursday's impending holiday.

There are moments I want to go by faster - pain in my knee. And those I would like to bring to a crawl - any time with my nephew.

I want to learn to appreciate time. To slow down and enjoy the moment. To manage it and make it work for me. And take time waits for no man or woman.

So, while I find myself wishing away 2008 because it has been a bit lousy, I'm hoping it doesn't go to fast, I still have lots to do.

Yours in transition, Kate

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Get in the Holiday Spirit, damn it!

I have had a month long roller-coaster ride. Today, one of the worst things yet, my general manager announced he is leaving in mid-January. He is one of the best bosses I have ever had and is the reason I got back into radio. He makes work fun. He has also had my back all along the way. I do not know how I will fare without him. Or how are group will fare. He resigned after a budget squabble with our corporation. I am convinced the move was his way of loosening the budget a little and possibly saving jobs. This absolutely sucks one week before Christmas.

So, when I ran across one of those surveys regarding Christmas on Annette's Blog, I decided it was time to sip some egg nog and get merry, damn it. Here goes...

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags?
Depends on how much time I have. I prefer to wrap, but frequently fall into the 'bag it' category.

2. Real tree or Artificial?
Real this year for the first time since 1996. I have been living in apartments or too poor for a tree. Plus, with three cats, there was great fear of tree climbing becoming the sport of choice. Alas, they are almost uninterested. Which is good, but startling.

3. When do you put up the tree?
Just after Thanksgiving is preferable. But we had to wait for the funds to free up, so we got it last week. (Thank you Gordon for the truck.)

4. When do you take the tree down?
After New Year's day.

5. Do you like eggnog?
Yes. AE egg nog. Honestly I have never had any other kind and have never had rum in it, so maybe I wouldn't like the real thing. But AE is like creamy melted ice cream.

6. Favorite gift received as a child?
My record player. I was 6 and it was real. That was the Christmas I had confirmed for me that Santa was real. I didn't even tell my parents I wanted the record player, but there it was under the tree! After Christmas Mom took me out and I bought an Elvis single with my own Christmas money.

7. Hardest person to buy for?
My Dad. I love him so much and he's given me so much. I always want that gift that really gets a reaction. I rarely find it.

8. Easiest person to buy for?
Lori. If it is geeky or foodie, I am safe.

9. Do you have a nativity scene?

10. Mail or email Christmas cards?
When I have the money and time, mail. This year, e-mail. (My deepest apologies to the postal workers.)

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received?
Three years running people in my extended family got me sweaters that were size large. I was XXL at the time.

12. Favorite Christmas Movie?
Christmas Vacation, The Preacher's Wife (Cary Grant version of course), White Christmas, Holiday Inn - oh wait, I was only supposed to give one.

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas?
When I have the money. Read that as - this weekend.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present?
Not technically. It wasn't regifted, it was just given to the person and they knew it had been a gift for me.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas?
Oh goodness, where to start? Grandma's oyster stuffing, Mom's soup, Lori's cookies, anything decorated by Caelen. I will eat anything, but as you can see, I prefer the things made with love.

16. Lights on the tree?
As many as I can have without causing a fire.

17. Favorite Christmas Song?
To hear sung well? Silent Night. For sexy Santa fun? Baby it's Cold Outside.

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home?
Always home within the bounds of the Des Moines metro. In fact, this year Christmas is at my new home. (We'll see how I feel about that brilliant offer on the 26th.)

19. Can you name all of Santa’s reindeer?
Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen on Comet on Cupid on Donner and Blitzen. (Yes, I always sing in my head to get those.) And of course Rudolph. Though I hesitate on the latter because he wasn't unearthed until the 1930's.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star?
Star. The tree is mostly Star Wars, so it was a must.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning?
I like to wait as long as possible. But with multiple family Christmases, I have to bend somewhat.

22. Holiday-wear, yea or nay?
I have a couple of pairs of socks. I am going to buy another pair this weekend, but that's it. My only real seasonal wear is actually able to be worn all winter - a nice bright red sweater.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color?
Well, after several years of collecting and waiting, we finally got to put up our Star Wars tree this year. Only one tiny snag, a box of ornaments is missing, so we had to go buy some balls. Oh well, it looks nice.

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner?
If I had my druthers it would be pizza or soup and sandwiches. I would rather hang out with my family than stress over not burning the bird. That being said, I am lining up turkey, etc. for December 25.

25. What do you want for Christmas this year?
The same thing I always want - world peace. But as we all know, Santa can't fit it in the sleigh or we would have it by now.

Holiday cheers, Kate

Monday, December 15, 2008

Stepping Away

The end of a long day.

I am now heading home, wanting to workout. I think my big workout will be unpacking, I am woefully behind. My goal is by Christmas, we'll see. More likely, a lot done by Christmas, the rest by our planned house warming party in January.

With my new schedule I am struggling with when to go to the gym.

With the holidays upon us, I am struggling with the constant treats appearing on the devil's playground - aka - the back table.

But now I need to step away from my desk and see what the evening really holds, as compares to what I hope it will hold.

Yours in transition, Kate

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Another Ten Days Lost

Wow. I didn't realize I had let another ten days slip away without posting. I'm sorry.

I have been wrapped up in my health. Last time I posted I was holding back. Here's the lowdown, by body part:

Lungs - steroid inhaler seems to be doing the trick. I ran up the stairs earlier this week without thinking and didn't end up with sharp stabbing pains or a total loss of breath. Yea!

Knee - It's sore. The more I use it and get back to walking a lot at work and slide back into working out, the more it will. I am going to the gym to ride the bike in the morning. I am going to combine physical therapy and pushing it by working out. I want to see where the knee really is when I go back to the ortho on Christmas Eve. I really want it to be good and avoid surgery, exploratory or other. There's a Power Climb to do in February!

My shoulder - This is what I didn't mention. When they did the chest x-ray, which came out fine, they spotted a shadow on my right shoulder. I went back for a series of x-rays on it and they found I have a growth in the top of my humerus. An MRI later and they say it's either enchondroma (non-cancerous) or chondrosarcoma (cancer). The initial reports now say it is most like not cancer. I'll get the final say, they think, on the 24th when I go to the ortho for my knee - he's looking at my shoulder too.

But to be frank, this is my second cancer scare in a year. Earlier in the year it was a lump in my breast.

With my mental state frayed from all the changes this year it really got to me. Then I had to tell my mother, which I wasn't going to do until I had a final diagnosis, and she got really upset. That in turn amped me up.

Finally she took us both to have massages. That helped recenter us both I think.

Now here I sit after having worked all night, about to go put in another hour. I am tired. Not just from today, though there are good reasons for that. Just tired of feeling like a broken toy.

Since June my body has felt like it wants to fight me at every step. I am losing patience.

Yours in transition, Kate

Thursday, December 4, 2008

A week of losing track

I have been able to slide toward getting back on track with food. I have spent the week making better choices. I realized I kept trying to go directly back to the way the uber-healthy me was eating and that won't work. I have gone too deep into my old habits. So rather than beating my head against that brick wall that is myself, I will give myself a break - as so many wise people have already told me to do.

They announced my work transition today, I still have no idea how I feel. No one is quite sure how to treat me. Mainly I am so busy, I haven't had time to 'think' it to death, which is good.

My lungs checked out o.k. earlier this week with a new chest x-ray. They now believe I may have 'injured' my lungs or had a small untreated infection earlier this year that caused my sudden onset of asthmatic symptoms. I am on a steroid inhaler for a month or so to see if that helps.

There will be more later, but I am finally leaving work and just wanted to check in.

Yours in transition, Kate

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Really Busy

It's been a little easier to control my eating the last day or so. My schedule change is helping, I think.

Plus, I am so busy, I am back to grabbing and eating as I do. It makes it a lot harder to just keep feeding your face.

Later this week I hope to face down the gym demon.

Yours in transition, Kate

Monday, December 1, 2008

Rolling on

I am back at work today for the first time in 10 days. I was technically on vacation, but with the move and the holiday, it didn't really feel like it. Plus, my ongoing battle with the blues.

To that point, I have made an appointment to see a counselor to try to hash this out. I am not really a whiner and I have a horrible time feeling like I can lean on other people, even if they offer. So, if I am actually paying someone, maybe it will make me feel freer.

Otherwise, I have made a vow to go back to the gym this week. I also have to make an appointment for PT for my knee. I have a month until I go back to the doctor, want to see if I can make some progress.

Also, going to my regular doc today to talk about my breathing problem. I will hit more on that tomorrow, but it's not just because I have gained weight back. I know there is something more.

Wow, apparently I personally plan to help the medical community in Des Moines pay for a happy holiday. :)

Yours in transition, Kate

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Another Upside to Moving

I haven't seen the bathroom scale in a week. Of course, right now, I'm not entirely sure what box it is in. I'm sure that will soon be remedied. But in the mean time it is an overdue vacation from watching the numbers rise nearly daily.

There is only one person who can reverse that and she is typing right now.

People keep saying, you did it before, you can do it again. Technically they are right and there are moments when I fully get on board with that idea. Then there are moments involving a mint-chocolate brownie...

Oh well, I didn't back slide overnight, I sure as heck won't be able to pick-up the pieces that quickly. Unless they are chocolate chip...

Yours in redirection, Kate

Friday, November 28, 2008

Where the Hell Have I Been?

24 days. That's how long it has been since my last post.

In that time we have elected a new president, my job has changed again, I have gained more weight, my knee injury is only slightly better, I have moved into my new house and I have come to the conclusion it's time to seek help.

Well, geez. I wasn't really going to talk about that last one. But I will in a minute because apparently I need to. First - the other things.

A new president - The election sucked away my time, as expected. I ate poorly and exercised, not at all.

My job - It's complicated, as usual. I will again be making a transition because it's best for the team. I have no idea whether it's best for me or not, I've had no time or inclination to think about it.

The weight - I am attempting to eat my emotions away. One cookie, cake and sub sandwich at a time, hoping to assuage my pain, so far, it's not working for crap.

My knee - I had an MRI. There is a tear in my cartilage, but it's not where it should be causing pain. They would like to do exploratory surgery. I am giving it another couple months of therapy and then reassessing. I have this thing about knives.

My new house - That's what sapped my time after the election. I had to pack and plan and execute a move. Everything went almost exactly as planned - right up until we landed with the first truckload last Saturday and one half of the former owners was still moving out. I kind of saw it coming though and rolled with it. The way I have been feeling lately, that was kind of a little miracle. Anyway, just in the unpacking phase now. Next week is about creating a list of projects and putting together a five year plan for remodels and renovations.

My mental health - I have eluded to it here on the blog for months. Things have been falling to pieces inside my head. I am at the point where I feel like I can't deal with them alone. I will be seeking counseling next week.

I think a lot of things have lead to this point, again. And all of the reasons above, as well as my continued crap luck with men have been a catalyst. That last part pisses me off the most. That I would let anything any man might do affect my mental health or eating habits makes me angry, mostly at myself. Once more I have fallen into a spiraling pattern of pain and self-loathing.

I will NOT let this happen. It is not o.k. to be in pain. It is not o.k. to eat myself back to morbidly obese. This will get better.

The difference now is that I recognize these patterns. That means, when I do walk into a counseling session, I will be ready to be helped and that is half the battle.

Yours, getting back into the saddle, Kate

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day!

I am going to keep it brief because today will be a bit insane. But I wanted to remind you to V-O-T-E!

People have literally died to get and preserve the right to vote. You are not a real American if you do not vote. AND you have zero right to bitch if you do not head to the polls.

Plus, Starbucks (aka- my close friends) are offering you a deal - whether you vote today or you voted three weeks ago like I did - just go tell them you voted and get a FREE 12 ounce cup of coffee.

Now that's a deal!

Thanks in advance for voting, you are what makes this country the best in the world!

Yours in patriotic health, Kate

Monday, November 3, 2008

It's a Beautiful Day

It is far too nice for me to do what I originally planned to do for a workout today. I was going to go hit the weights and swim. But for go's sake it's 75 and sunny on November 3rd! Outside is the only answer.

As I have been banned from running, I will not do that. Funny, I have never wanted to run so bad as recently, when I have been told 'no'.

Anyway, I have decided, despite also being told not to walk, that is how I will exercise today. I am headed outdoors in just a few minutes - I am being a rebel. (Insert evil laugh here - mwah, ha-ha)

Yours in fitness, Kate

Friday, October 31, 2008

Sarah Palin Pays Me a Compliment

I interviewed republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin yesterday. She was very nice, but she surprised me a little.

Her handlers had found my blog and Governor Palin had read parts of it. She complimented me on my accomplishments.

It all stemmed from my asking her what, if anything, she gets to do for fun on the campaign trail. She said spend time with her kids and run. She said she tries to eek out 30 minutes regularly to sweat and it helps her stay centered.

I had a not so great morning yesterday and had gone to the gym for my PT, when I got there I jest needed to hit something. So I went into the group fitness room and punched the heavy bag until my knuckles bruised. I felt better afterward and I was sweaty.

So when she said that sweat helps her stay centered, I told her I could relate. BTW - in her iPod when she runs? Black-eyed Peas, country, Van Halen and lots of 80's.

Yours in fitness, Kate

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Can I Blame Sarah Palin for my thighs?

Just kidding. Sort of.

My day is awash in politics today. I am set to interview Senator Harkin in a few minutes. Then this afternoon, after much work, I have finally landed an interview with vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

That interview and all of my other work are going to wipe out my day. I plan to try to get in some exercise, but it will be limited. Plus, I have PT.

That's all I have time for, I have to get my questions ready for the Senator.

Yours in health, Kate

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Quick Post Again

Yesterday did PT and had a nice workout. Was allowed on the bike, am overachiever, kind of made myself sore.

Today, too busy to catch butt with both hands. Hope to do this tomorrow, the cheeks could use a little squeeze.

Off to take Mischa cat to the vet and make calls to contractors for home repairs - I am a domestic goddess.

Yours in insanity, Kate

Monday, October 27, 2008


I did something I have been avoiding for a while yesterday - I stepped on the scale. It was almost exactly where I thought it would be 179. That's 30 pounds over my lowest weight earlier this year. That's also 44 pounds away from my original goal.

The numbers are bad, but the feeling is worse. Mentally it's made me a mess and physically, I'm blech. Plus, my clothes no longer fit.

So, I think it is time to bribe myself. I haven't done this in a long time, but ridiculous times call for old school measures.

Here it is:

5 pounds - new album download for mp3 player to workout to (probably Nickelback's new one)

10 pounds - "His Girl Friday" on DVD - I aspire to be Hildy.

15 pounds - Another album download (probably the new 3 Doors Down)

20 pounds - Pedicure

25 pounds - Album download

30 pounds - Pedicure and Massage

35 pounds - New running shoes (I just bought some, so by then they should need replaced)

40 pounds - New clothes (workout, work, play and maybe a swimsuit)

45 pounds - if this level makes sense, I will negotiate with myself then.

3 months maintenance - Pedicure, facial, massage

6 months maintenance - Weekend away

9 months maintenance - new winter coat and boots

1 year maintenance - The works - clothes, hair, spa, etc.

Maintaining at 40th birthday (not quite three years from now) - trip abroad, probably England and Ireland.

There it is, in writing, my blatant attempt to get myself back on track through gifts. I deserve to be completely healthy again, so I will entice myself however necessary. Kind of feeling pathetic that I have to do this. But also feeling like something has to give and it might as well be me.

Yours in health, Kate tips,

P.S. - I am copying this over with pictures to post at work and home to keep my eye on the prize.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


I was in the midst of finishing three projects on Thursday, so no time to post. Yesterday I tried a couple of times, but Blogger was down. Today thus far has been mostly a loss, because I have been in the Sarah Palin motorcade. Nothing sucks your time away like hurry up and wait with a campaign.

At the moment I am at work. I hope to be out of here by 7. Tomorrow I hope to actually do this thing called exercise, I have heard it can be quite beneficial.

Yours in health, Kate

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

In the Swim

I did go to the gym yesterday and worked out in the pool. My ear was popping like somebody was hitting my tympanic membrane, in fact, it's still doing it. So I didn't actually swim for fear I would do damage.

Instead I - ran, did upper body weights, squats, crunches, lunges, step-ups, leg lifts and jumping jacks. I did all of that in the water in 35 minutes.

It's not quite the cardio of swimming, but it was a workout. And it was fun, which was good.

No workout today, I have a lot of work to get done and two fun interviews to go do. I am talking to Olympian and World Champion hurdler Lolo Jones about childhood obesity. Then it's up to Ames to interview one of my favorite guys - Ron Livingston.

He's VERY handsome and it will be good to see him again. The last time we met up in person was 2004, I was a big woman then and I am not now. He won't know that, but I will. :)

Anyway, I better get my butt in gear if I am going to get anything done before the Power Climb meeting - yep, it's coming up. I can't believe it, but February 22nd is just around the corner. Early registration is beginning soon - I'll have a full post on this tomorrow.

Yours in fitness, Kate

And now for your gratuitous picture the chocolate brown-eyed Iowa native Ron Livingston.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Quick Post

I have been dancing around whether to go to the gym or not. This could be nap time instead, since I have an interview to do at 5:45, followed by volunteering until 8:15. But alas, I think I have too much energy to just roll over. I better make the most of it. So, I am posting quickly and headed to swim, since that's all I am allowed to do anyway.

Yours in fitness, Kate

Monday, October 20, 2008

A cold

Sorry for not posting over the weekend. By the time I wanted to post Saturday it was clear I was getting sick. Then yesterday I didn't move from bed except to pee. Basically this little cold from Wisconsin (thank you Ben & Abby - Lori's nephew & niece) knocked me on my butt.

Lots of sleep and water yesterday seem to have paid off. I am awake, upright and at work. I am even accomplishing a few things, including staying away from the cookies on the back table.

And I am even in a pretty good mood. Maybe I was just exhausted. Being tired can make you unreasonably hungry. LOL. Any excuse will do.

Today I have my second PT appointment. I hope to be given exercises to do when I am not at the therapist. I want to recover now! Ah, yes, I am getting back to 'normal'. Which is relative. (Not any of mine, but relative none-the-less.)

Yours in health, Kate

Friday, October 17, 2008

The new look

I got my hair chopped off last night - more than a bit shorter than I expected, but it will be o.k. I kind of let Sarah, the owner of Salon de Vallon do what she would. I have low lights of dark blonde/brown and reddish/burgundy. I will not get the full effect of what it will look like every day until tomorrow after I shower.

Today it looks a bit like hell because I let her straighten it yesterday which looked fa-boo. But when I woke up this morning it had morphed into all kinks and waves. I had time to shake it out, smooth it a bit and throw on a head band. Tomorrow, after I swim, I will show and see what the cut and color look like with my full curly glory.

BTW - that's right, I am headed back to the gym. Swimming, seated weights and hard-core core await me. I'm looking forward to it.

Yours in health, Kate

Thursday, October 16, 2008

A new coat of paint

Not for a room in my house to be. (That will all come soon enough.) But one for me.

I have been in a funk for a while and while I am slowly lifting out of it, my mom is helping me take a big leap forward tonight. She is popping for me to have my hair done.

It's been over 8 months since my last hair cut. At the time it was winter, so I had some low-lights put in. Now, my hair is thick with summer blond. And I didn't use an SPF shampoo, so it's also sun-damaged from my many summer runs.

My hair's disarray is pretty typical of my physical upkeep in general, especially these last few months. I need to throw on a new coat of paint and pair it with a new attitude for a complete makeover.

I don't plan to walk out of the salon a changed person. I do expect to walk out looking good. ;)

Yours in (mental) health, Kate

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Physical Therapy

I went to my first PT appointment yesterday. I was assigned a very pleasant young lady named Katrina. She broke it to me gently and with a smile that running is not in the cards for the foreseeable future. And that stair climb in February? Uh, no training for that, at all, until the end of therapy, then maybe.

I knew it was coming, but that didn't make it any easier. My only cardio option is swimming. My schedule this week will not allow for wet hair. This weekend though, I will make time.

The other thing I actually didn't see coming was - very little weight training. Anything that might put more pressure on my left knee is bad. So, if I can stand completely upright, or do the move seated with no lower body pressure, I can do it. If not, no. I guess that means my core is getting abused for the next four weeks. I mean I will still do some upper body, but compared to what I would normally do.

I think I am going to get a list of what I am 'approved' to do. That way I won't do what Lori will tell you I tend to do, which is over do.

Anyway, the knee is pretty bad. I'm not supposed to walk more than to run errands and absolutely no running. I am stuck with the stairs up to my apartment, but no moving anything that weighs anything in or out.

That last part will hopefully change before November 22nd. On the 21st we close on our house and on the 22nd I plan to spend the whole day moving whatever I can. That way when the movers arrive on Monday, they pretty much have the big stuff left.

SO this explains part of my grump yesterday. Tomorrow I hope to have more answers on that subject.

Yours in health, Kate

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

In a circle

I am circling myself with negative talk and cookies. I have let my passing depression about a number of issues put me in a tail spin. Yesterday's diagnosis of my knee and confirmation of something being wrong - well, it was about all I could take.

I have this endless urge to cry and bury myself in chocolate today. It has made me tired and impatient. I do not like being either one.

I am leaving work now, much earlier than usual, because I have to reset or I don't know what. I saw that WebGal had the same bad mojo rockin' yesterday and I feel for her.

Life has put me here, but I am the one who dug the hole so deeply. Now I have to build a ladder to get out - one step at a time.

Yours in (lack of mental) health, Kate

Monday, October 13, 2008

Damn It.

No 5K for me on Sunday.

I went to the orthopedist today. He thinks I have Patellofemoral pain syndrome.

So, I am banned from running or walking long distances for at least a week. After that, it is up to the physical therapist, which I now get to see twice a week for the next four weeks. For now, my cardio is swimming and any thoughts I had of running the 5K Sunday are out the window.

I am terribly frustrated by this, it makes me want to stress eat - lol. (Wish I was totally kidding there.) Anyway, a month of therapy, swimming and generally taking it 'easy' lies ahead. If after that time it's not better, I get to have an MRI and (gulp) that could mean surgery.

The upside? I have done the surgery thing before on this same knee - it sucked, it was awful and it took months to recover. Why on earth would that be the upside?

I am more fit now, weigh less and technology and surgery are eons ahead of where they were. Plus, the Orthopedist I have this time is highly respected and at a private hospital. The last guy was doing his community service for the year at Broadlawns - putz.

So, I am to take it easy today and go shopping. What? That's the other thing the doc said, my inch and a half, sensible heels, have to go until further notice. I am to wear flats. That is lovely, I own one pair, they are purple. This afternoon they will hopefully acquire cheap (but supportive) black and brown cousins. Is that covered by insurance?

Yours in health, Kate

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sunday Inspiration - Reading

I have blogged endlessly recently about my eating issues, my weight gain, my tiredness and my feeling of being completely lost. Just now I slid over to Women's Health Magazine looking for a "Sunday Inspiration" column and I finally found answers to what has been beating me up.

I try to learn something new daily - one thing about the world and one thing about health and fitness. This article is about stress and how it can effect your weight. I have not only learned something new, but I have had a complete break-through, I have figured out why I have gained so much weight.

I was just thinking yesterday, "What is it that's been grinding away on me over the summer?" I started to wander toward being in a so-so relationship with a man and wondered if my pre-existing issues with the male sex had been the catalyst. Was I so scared of taking one on the chin with men again that I began making myself fat by overeating? I thought about it hard. The very idea pissed me off. Could I have really been that weak? The fact that it angered me made me think it was something else, but men might have played a smaller role.

Then I started looking at the timeline. All of this food crap started as my stress levels rose. As I tried to maintain dating and family and home and work. And there it was - work.

Early this summer, just weeks after dealing with the stress of working 20-22 hour days covering the floods, I was socked with bad news - my role was changing. At that time they told me my position really didn't exist anymore, but they were keeping on to do part of my job because I was good at it. However, since the other part of my job was being given away, I had to find a way to 'justify my salary'.

I am glad to have a job, a job that pays pretty well and has health insurance and most of the time I like very much. But a summer and fall of being in limbo has work me out - mentally, physically, emotionally, intellectually - I am spent.

So, when I read this article in Women's Health, it all crystallized for me. Yes, I had sabotaged my own weight loss maintenance, but so had my own body. My stress has seized control. I'm stressed I eat, I don't eat I am stressed, I gain weight I stress and the circle is endless - until now. Now that I have a much better idea of what the hormone cortisol is and what it is doing to my body - I have a much better chance of fighting back and that is inspiring.

Yours in health, Kate

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Packing away the calories

This post has a double meaning:

1. I have spent much of the day packing. Our offer was accepted on a house!!! We close November 21st and take possession the 22nd. I plan to have EVERYTHING done a few days before. Lori will be working over the weekend, so I will move as much as I can. then on Monday the 24th, I will let movers finish the job. I am so pumped, I can't stand it. A house, a yard, a washer/dryer, {sigh}.

2. When Lori is gone (as she is with her family this weekend) I eat total crap. Better pack harder.

Yours in health, Kate

Friday, October 10, 2008

Running with Gordon

I did a short run with Gordon last night. He was running a little late and I had to get to Planned Parenthood to volunteer.

But it's so great to run with him. The running itself is good, but the conversation is better. I am too busy for my own good and I don't get much of a chance to just be social with my brothers.

When Gordon and I run together I get to talk to him and I learn something new every time. Even though I have known him for his whole 33.5 years, he always shares something new. And each time it is a reminder of how much I like him, he's a really good guy.

It makes me want to run with Casey (my youngest brother), but I guess I have never asked. He has Caelen and Annette, but maybe I could get him to squeeze me in. But he recently injured his hamstring in a sharp shooting competition, so I don't know if he's ready to run yet. I will ask though, because I would like to know him better too.

Yours in (mental) health, Kate

Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Knee

Pain. I ran yesterday despite the pain and ouch. I know, if it hurts, don't do it. But I am struggling with that.

I am set to run with Gordon again tonight. Hopefully it will fair better.

The doctor's office finally called yesterday, my orthopedist appointment is Monday, maybe I will find some answers.

I just have to make it through the 19th for the 5K. Then I can rest it a little.

Yours in fitness, Kate

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Feeling a bit better

Why doesn't the scale move after one day of eating right and exercising? LOL. Just kidding.

But, honestly, yesterday I had a good day. I watched what I ate (and logged it) and worked out hard. My knee is acknowledging that today.

While I was at the doctor last week I talked to her about my left knee. I mentioned it at the beginning of September, it was rebuilt and now, it keeps putting me in pain.

I thought at first it was the specific exercises I was doing. But now, no matter what I do - run, bike, elliptical, squats, etc - it hurts like hell. Now, a normal person would say, "I better not exercise". A formerly obese, currently overweight girl, she just can't. I didn't run last week or do much of anything else and that doesn't work for me. I have to keep moving and cut calories to take off the weight.

Anyway, my doc took an x-ray of the knee and not surprisingly, found arthritis. But we agreed, that's not what this is. In fact, it feels like the back of my knee is broken, across the width of my leg. It's sore, sharp, throbbing and slips all at once. Yes, I know, ouch.

My doc is supposed to set-up an appointment with an orthopedist; if they haven't called by tomorrow I will call to remind them. I had joked about really pushing my knee so it actually hurt when I went in. (I didn't want mechanics syndrome, you know, "No, I swear, it makes that noise." But never in front of the mechanic.)

Ironically, I can't make it stop hurting this time and I haven't even been rough on it. That's mainly because I realized I at least need it to last until the 5K on the 19th.

Other than the knee though, I am in a better place. I plan to work on doing better everyday.

Yours in fitness, Kate

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The face in the mirror

Ignore this post.
I put on a pair of pants today that I purposely shrunk a couple of months ago because they were running a bit big, it worked. Today those pants are quite tight and again, it has worked - I get the point.

Then I was in the bathroom washing my hands and looked up and dear god, there she is again - fat me. My clothes are tight and now, even my face is plumping up again.

For a while people said I was getting too skinny, no one could say that now. I wanted to scream and cry. Look what I have done!

It's only 21 pounds, but it feels like I am carrying another person. I am starting to not feel good again. I am tired.

Even my ring I bought for my second anniversary fits now. Before it was loose enough I had to keep an eye on it. (To think, I toyed with having it sized down.)

I am not complaining, because honestly, I am the only one to blame. Instead I am sitting here uncomfortably in my pants with my own reflection and contemplating.

Yours in blech, Kate

Monday, October 6, 2008

From the beginning... Remember Where You Have Been

As I mentioned, I went to the doctor on Friday. She asked me how I was and I said, "Fat." She grimaced and simply asked, "Why is that?" I confessed that my sugar addiction was kicking my butt, impulse control was nearly non-existent and I seemed to have forgotten what a portion looks like.

She looked up and smiled and said, "Just remember how hard it was to get here." And then we went about our business.

You know, I used to do that all the time. I would think about how hard it used to be to breath, how I couldn't sleep, how I used to overflow chairs. I seemed to have lost sight of that lately. I have stopped looking at obese people and thinking, "I'm not going back". Instead I just look at cookies and think, "I bet that tastes really good".

And you know, it does. That cookie tastes damn good. But...

The body I am letting slowly slip away is better. The wardrobe I am stretching to fit in is nice and at times, sexy. I've not been feeling very sexy these past few weeks - I miss that.

But sexy and self-confidence are simply two sides to the same coin and without the later, I won't get back the former. So, I have to remember where I have been.

I have been morbidly obese, depressed, lonely and pathetic.

I have been thinner, happier, boisterous and sexy.

Now not everyone who is obese is the former, many are the later. But I know I was, so the second option is for me. It's time to put my money where my cookie is and get my butt in gear to make some new memories.

Yours in (mental) health, Kate

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Sunday Inspiration - Co-Workers

I have been busy or sick all week. I have not worked out for a week. Today will be no better, I plan to give my body one more day to feel lousy and that's it. I will get back to working out tomorrow. I will also get my food back on track. I have been better while I have been sick, but not perfect. I totally went off the tracks while caravanning with John McCain earlier this week and never quite got upright.

But right now I am at work and remembering Friday. On Friday, as I was about to go to the doctor to be - a. assured I am not anemic and b. told I probably have a sinus infection and given antibiotics - I was beeped in my office. Lori at the front desk wanted me to know a listener was bringing by a surprise - it was 3 dozen! donuts.

It appears he is a fan of my news. That's awesome. Not so awesome, the two and a half Donut King donuts I scarfed down.

But before I took my donuts, I walked the donut boxes around and offered everyone in the office a donut. (Part of me was hoping they would take them all, since my self-control is on the blink.) As I took them around, some people grabbed quickly and slyly, even taking two. But a number of others reached in and then backed out without grabbing one.

I remember being that girl. For the first 16 months of my journey I had this weird ability to look at anything and say no, or just take a small bite. Now, I struggle with not taking a second one, whatever it is.

So, my food got better over the weekend and I think I have my co-workers to thank. Watching them being able to turn away what many people consider the best donuts in town was an inspiration. The two Dans, Peg, Celia, Luke, Scott and a few others I am not thinking of, good for you and thank you.

Yours in health, Kate

Friday, October 3, 2008

A Wash

This week has been wasted. I was with McCain for two days eating junk and not working out. Wednesday I had to play catch up and was just exhausted - no workout. Yesterday, it hit me - I'm sick.

I am at the point when I don't know I am getting sick until I am really sick. I think I have at least an ear infection (I'm dizzy) and maybe something in my sinuses and throat.

I am at work, but it will only be until about 10 and then I am going to the doctor. I am hoping to get drugs and feel better by tomorrow. I have a very important date with my favorite guy - Caelen.

Yours in (ill) health, Kate

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

An Iowa Culinary Lesson

If there is potato soup at a hotel in West Des Moines, Iowa, it will have bacon in it - lesson learned.

I was on day two of legally stalking John McCain (aka- being in the local press pool) and they were feeding us lunch at a WDM hotel. The wraps looked good, but they had bacon in them. So when soup arrived, I was, "heck yea".

It was chock full of veggies and I grabbed a bowl. I was about 5 tablespoons in thinking how awesome it tasted when one of the national press guys (on his second bowl) said, "Oh, it's got bacon. No wonder it's so good."

I froze. I haven't eaten bacon or any form of red meat in about seven years. I tasted the remnants in my mouth, of course, I should have known that salty, smoky taste. I put the bowl down, grabbed a swig of water and ate half of the protein bar I brought as a back-up.

About 20 minutes later I discern that McCain isn't making anymore news on my beat for the day and head back to work. On the way my stomach starts swelling and I am overcome with ick.

To keep it relatively urp-free - I got sick as soon as I walked in the door at the office.

I went ahead and edited my audio and did some other work, including a surprise press conference with the Governor. Then I drug my dragging butt home and rested for 45 minutes before heading out to do some volunteer work.

Between my culinary misadventure and lack of sleep, I am hurting this morning. But I am hoping working hard today will get me ready to hit the gym this afternoon. Hoping.

Yours in health, Kate

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

John McCain is Messing with Me

Yesterday I was going to sit down and flesh out my two weekend posts, then write another post about the new plan trainer Traci and I have created. But alas, an e-mail from the McCain presidential campaign wiped that out.

They invited me to be the only local radio reporter to travel in the motorcade - very cool. The problem is, the invitation was extended on Sunday, so I had to wipe out my schedule for yesterday and today, because that's when he is here! A little notice would have been good, but I will make do.

However, that means this brief note is all I have time for today. So, I promise to update the other two and tell you about the plan tomorrow.

BTW, the only workout I got in yesterday was walking to keep up with presidential campaign staffers and members of the secret service. The bonus? Being in better shape means that's possible! (Those people are quick - but then I knew that.)

Yours in health, Kate

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Sunday Inspiration

I will come back and flesh this out later, but I have to get to the gym. I thought this was an interesting story. See Here.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Walk from Obesity - The Report

I am running short on time as I go to meet up with Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore. I will give you a full report later, but it was a very humbling and energizing experience.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Tomorrow is the Walk From Obesity

I go before people like myself tomorrow. There will be people who have lost weight. Want to lose weight. Can't control their eating. Have tried everything. Workout constantly. Eat healthy. And some who may have had surgery. That is the only thing I haven't done with regard to my weight.

I am tipping the scale at 167 right now. That is 18 pounds higher than where I was at the end of May. It is 27 pounds higher than I would like. It is 32 more pounds higher than my original goal. It is unacceptable.

I have had people remind me that muscle weighs more than fat - it does. But muscle is not what is making the buttons want to bust off my pants right now - it is fat. Fat that I swore I would never let come visit again. Fat that has no place in my life. Fat that I can blame no one but myself for - I have failed me.

As I slid back into old eating habits (huge portions and high sugar), I also started to slow down my exercise. That's a 1-2 punch to the gut - literally. I now am living proof of what I have preached for a very long time - "This is forever. It's a lifestyle change. You can't go back to the way you were before, it won't work."

I am feeling very hypocritical as I prepare to stand before these people tomorrow. Some will be looking for hope, some for inspiration. I plan to give them both and I will be looking for both for me as well. I expect I will find it in stories and struggles that sound startlingly like my own.

Yours in health, Kate

P.S. - I have already been proactive - my brother and I are now training for the Des Moines Marathon 5K. Since I refuse to be slower than I was last year - I guess I have no choice but to skim off some weight and get running again.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I hate being a Girl

O.k., you know that's not true. I would not want to be a man for anything - that blood-brain vacuum thing that happens - I need to be able to think.

But I do sing the ditty, "I hate being a girl" to the tune of Rodgers & Hammerstein's "I Enjoy Being a Girl" from Flower Drum Song. I do that when I have my period and I am unstoppably miserable. I am crampy and hungry constantly. And tired. Like right now.

Boy, I'm just peaches and cream today. This will teach me not to back to back my birth control packs. You see, I had been skipping my periods by putting my pill packs one right after the other. (Knowing laugh.) But I decided I should go ahead and have one this month. What the hell was I thinking?!

On that note - I think I am going to go home and enjoy being a girl.

Yours in (poor mental) health, Kate

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Busy Day

I wish I was about to post something useful, but alas, you get my list:

  • First, the good news - pre-approval has been given for a home loan!
  • Regular news - Have cramps and am tired - period and lack of sleep will do that.
  • Busy news - Work is crazy, many things going on - tomorrow is special presentation starring Kate. I am practicing yoga breathing and I don't even do yoga.
  • Crap news - I am being audited by the state of Iowa for 6! years! Now I must go deal with this.
  • Really crap news - all of this is affecting my workout potential.

    However, two things I am quite grateful for above - I have a job to stress me and it will help pay for my home!

    Yours in (mental) health, Kate
  • Tuesday, September 23, 2008

    Working on an "Alternative"

    I am just not feeling it today. I didn't fall asleep until 9 last night, so maybe that is why. I mean I do get up around 2:45 a.m. every day.

    I just walked with my friend Chandler. I really need to run. Then go home and do core and some body weight work. My one real fitness accomplishment for the day seems to be sending out an e-mail to see if anyone has heavier hand weights I can buy off them.

    I currently have 2 pound and 8 pound. The 2 collect dust kitties and the 8 pound present little if any challenge. I need some 15 and 20, especially since gas has kept me home working out more often. Plus, this winter, when we're butt high in snow - if it looks dangerous I do not want to be wandering across town. If I have weights I can dance some salsa for cardio and lift at home.

    It's not perfect, but it's a nice start. If my roomie and I get a house, I want to get one of those things that holds your regular bike stationary. That way I can use it for cardio in the winter. Chandler says he has a weight bench I can buy cheap, I asked him to bring a picture later in the week. That's a handy accidental find.

    To quote a great character, "I love it when a plan comes together."

    Yours in Fitness, Kate

    Monday, September 22, 2008

    Back to Life - Monday

    Yesterday was so nice, I didn't even touch a computer. I didn't go to work, I just lived. So, apologies for not posting. But belatedly, my Sunday Inspiration is the weather. Yesterday was the official end of summer and today is the beginning of all and the weather could not be more perfect. We have been sunny and nearly 80 for a week and this week looks to be the same.

    Yesterday we got a brief sprinkle, but otherwise it was awesome. After dinner at Mom's I sat outside and soaked in a little sun. Then I helped moved around their bedroom furniture. After that I went and put in a super-fast 35 minute cardio/core/weights workout and headed to meet my Dad for a movie.

    I truly took the whole weekend off work, it was weird, but I liked it.

    Now, back to the grind today. I have a list of 10 things I need to get done this week, besides my usual duties, so here is to a week of accomplishments.

    With the beautiful weather I will be doing my cardio outside as much as possible. The only thing I wish is that I had bigger hand weights, mine are only 8 pounds and that's way too little for most of what I do. Otherwise, while it's nice, I can regularly workout from home.

    Have a great week!

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Saturday, September 20, 2008

    Sunny Saturday

    There is a patio in my future. I don't know where or if I will be eating or drinking, but I will be sitting outside enjoying the unstoppably beautiful weather at some point today.

    This morning I did my run to the farmers market. I was encroaching on being late because I watched too much of the news (good/bad habit of mine) so I debated driving. But then I took a deep drag off the crisp end of summer air and trying jogging down the street. I made 2 miles in 16 minutes, not bad. I didn't really feel like I was running that fast, but apparently I was.

    I met up with Lori and her mom and we grabbed the produce for the week - brussel sprouts, potatoes, sweet potatoes, sweet corn, squash (for Lori), honey crisp apples, french beans, and at least two other things I am forgetting. I noted to Lori and Barb on our way to their hotel that the FM basket has gotten heavier as I have gotten healthier. That works out well as it's always up to me to carry it after it hits 10 pounds. Today was pretty close to a record, it easily weighed 20+ pounds, I had to put my hip into it.

    Back here at the apartment I did some body weight work on my arms and legs and tons of abs. I have taken to putting the "Abs Diet" book next me me when I am on the mat to remind me of form on certain moves. It's fun. I hope sooner or later to not need the book.

    I worked out to Bon Jovi's "New Jersey" disc. I had forgotten how much it was really just fun, plus a couple of good ballads and a couple of rockers, all-in-all, a pretty good workout disc.

    When I am done posting, I am headed to the shower, then onto my day. I don't know what it will hold. I am fully prepared to wing it. This is my second day off and as I ran past my office this morning I felt a little pang of guilt. But not enough to go in this weekend, this sunny set of days is all mine.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Friday, September 19, 2008

    Lori's Actual Crush & I'm Off

    Turns out, as Lori informed me on the way back from Henry Rollins tonight, her real media crush at the moment is Keith Olbermann. (There you go roomie, the record has been set straight.)

    As for the show, Henry rocked, of course. He told old stories and new. He was funny and poignant and intelligent and (as usual) I walked away thinking harder than when I went in.

    On the way back Lori and I got into this hilarious 'fight'. When we are both amped up and punch-drunk-tired we tend to banter about absolutely nothing of importance. We laugh hysterically as we come up with even more convoluted scenarios and explanations to make each other crazy. It's all a game, but if anyone ever heard us, they would think we were loons.

    As for the other part of this post title, "I'm Off". Besides the obvious, that I am a bubble off plum, I am actually off work today (Friday). It is my first vacation day since becoming full-time at the radio group. And I have asked that someone to cover my weekend shift as well. That means, for the first time since January 2006, I will have three days off in a row!

    To be honest, I am feeling a bit lost. It's weird. I have been working so hard, so long, that it just feels like it's part of me. But I know I have earned it, so I am going to try to enjoy. I hope to sleep in this morning. Then go put in a long, hard workout, use the pedicure certificate Caelen, Annette and Casey got me and meet my mom for lunch. Beyond that, I have no clue.

    Lori is gone most of the weekend, so I am looking for some form of trouble...

    Yours in (mental) health, Kate

    Thursday, September 18, 2008

    Henry Rollins

    I am very excited. I am going to see Henry Rollins tonight. He is a writer/ spoken word artist/ author/ political dissident. He is highly intelligent (which is the sexiest thing ever!) and he is well built.

    He comes to Des Moines/ Ames every year. This time it is Ames and it's FREE - yea!

    I remember sitting in my seat at Stephens Auditorium in Ames three years ago when he came. I saw how hot he was and thought, "Someday, I will have a body I am not afraid to introduce him to." Now, I realize, I was letting my insanities make him out to be too shallow to date a fat girl - which is totally unfair - but that's what I was thinking.

    Today, I feel better and wouldn't be embarrassed to bump into him. However, Lori would probably knee cap me, because he's her crush, but hey.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Wednesday, September 17, 2008


    I am investigating the murder of Michele Davis. She was shot to death while driving down the freeway in Des Moines last Thursday. It has absorbed my day. In fact, I am going to the press conference for new information in about 45 minutes.

    I have not gone to the gym, I nearly forgot to eat and I am craving sugar. All because this hits me in the gut hard.

    The police aren't able to say 100%, but the more I dig, the more is confirmed - this was a domestic situation gone bad. Michele Davis was running for her life when she was shot on the freeway. So far no one has come forward to say they noticed anything.

    It happened in plain sight, but there are no witnesses until she died and her car rammed into other cars.

    This hits too close to home. 28 years ago, this could have been my mom.

    I know the police will get their man and if in the meantime I can get the public information to make it happen - more the better.


    Tuesday, September 16, 2008

    The Abs Diet

    I am just starting to hunker down and read "The Abs Diet for Women" by David Zinczenko, the Editor-in-Chief at Men's Health and Women's Health magazines. Already I am on board with his idea of constantly mixing protein and whole grains and complex carbs - it's actually how I ate before I got off track.

    The thing that really has me intrigued is his (scientifically backed) belief you only need 20 minutes of cardio at a time. No more 45 minute runs? Hell yea! And the exercise side seems to be about weight lifting and tearing up your abs - two of my favorite things!

    I am going to read more tonight, but I think this is going to help me reboot things the right way.

    By the way, it's getting cooler, which puts me in mind of soup. But soup tends to be salt and calorie laden. Yesterday though, I hit the mother-load. I found Campbell's Select Harvest Light soups. I had one for lunch today, the whole can - 120 calories, 6 grams protein, 8 grams fiber and still too much sodium. But hey, I am damn full and I had a big serving of veggies!

    Yours in health, Kate

    Monday, September 15, 2008

    From the beginning... Find Your "Other" Thing

    After ending up in the hospital at this time last year, I began struggling with my eating again. I was told I was eating too little and had to increase my calories. I was told I was teetering on malnutrition. I was freaked.

    First I ate too much, then I ate too little, then I evened out. Then I started flirting with sugar again. Then I started binging on sugar again. Now I am trying to get back into recovery on the whole sugar thing. (The giant piece of ice cream cake for my birthday not withstanding.)

    Today I interviewed the woman in charge of the Walk from Obesity, it's the 27th and I am the 'celebrity' speaker. Helping other people is something I am passionate about. Helping people take that first step or stay motivated in their weight loss journey is important to me. That's why I am looking forward to the walk.

    But after she left this morning, I felt the snugness of my pants and felt sad. I have let myself go, given in too many times to sugar, eaten away at my pain via cake and cookies. So, as I worked away the 'whys' tugged at me.

    I have wondered for some time why it was easier the first year to deal with food than it has been the second year. Today, perhaps, I have come to at least one answer - I lost my 'other' thing.

    When you are trying to lose weight, you need something to distract you from food, especially if, like myself, you are a food addict. When boredom sets in or when free time appears or when emotions get heavy - you need something else. I realized that my crash into the emergency room last year was about a month after Caelen went to school full-time and I went to work full-time outside the house again.

    When I came up on the other side of being ill and had the food world opened up to me again, I had nothing to distract me. As I settled into a stressful job with too many hours that never took off, I fell back into old patterns. I took to scanning the break-room for free food and sneaking a snack here or there. As the stress rose, so did my calorie count.

    If I had still been in the 'Caelen world' I would have had a full-time distraction. Teaching and loving him was my passion and more than enough to keep me from diving into doughnuts. But outside of my home full of healthy food choices and 4-year-old fun, I have been vulnerable to the same temptations as everyone else.

    Now I realize I need a new 'other' thing. Work is long and arduous at time, it can't be the other thing. Workouts have become just part of what I do, like bathing, a goal I set for myself a long time ago - so it's definitely not the 'other' thing.

    I don't know what it is. But I am going to spend the next few weeks trying to figure it out. In the meantime, I will eat healthier and let finding my 'other' thing, be the other thing.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Sunday, September 14, 2008

    Sunday Inpsiration - People You Don't Even Know

    I stopped by one of my favorite blogs today and found a nice surprise. The female author has been losing weight. I didn't know. It's so awesome though. She seems like a nice person and she deserves to be happy. I know from experience, being healthier makes you happy, so good for her. It's Web Gal, whose blog I have linked to the right.

    That got me to thinking. I don't know her, yet she inspires me. Then I looked back over the inspiration columns I have written. Very few of them have related to someone I know. Mostly they have been about complete strangers. That's what I find so intriguing.

    Something about these people and their stories help me believe that change is possible. That success is tangible. That hard work and perseverance pay off. More than a good diet and exercise program - belief - is key to success. You have to believe you can do this, that it is better, that healthier is better. If you don't believe, no one else will and you will begin to feel they are right, you ARE bound to fail.

    So thank you to all the anonymous and semi-anonymous people I have profiled. The people I read about or see on infomercials every day. Just because I don't know you personally, doesn't mean I don't believe in what you are doing.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Fry-Day & Sat-er-Day

    Friday - Going along fine. Then I was run over by a buffet. The Iowa-Iowa State game was today and everyone was tailgating a day early. I stuffed myself, it was ugly. Then at 12:15, I remembered that I needed to be at the gym in 45 minutes to train with Traci. Urp.

    I got to the gym and begged/warned Traci that the cardio warm-up should be skipped. (I was afraid I would puke.) She just looked at me with disbelief and stuff me on this stair climbing/ elliptical machine that makes me not only raise my heart rate, but bounce up and down. Urp.

    She pushed me hard and laughed every time I belched. Her only request was if I decided to barf I should try to make the bathroom or a garbage can. Other than that, she made no changes to the workout she had planned for me. Urp.

    But it was good and I made it through sans chunks. Ya! Urp.

    Sat-er-Day - Got up and went to a drizzly farmers market to hunt and gather weekly supply of vegetable delights. Got spit on wet, but not soaked, so I was glad I went. The vendors were miserable because it had poured right before we arrived. I felt for them. Some didn't even go this week due to the precipitation.

    Then I went home and watched a few minutes of the news. I was suddenly overcome by being tired, so I went and lay down on my bed. I set my alarm for an hour and planned to get up and go to the gym. I slept through it two or three times before Mischa pounced on my belly - I suspect it was his way of shutting off the alarm once and for all, since he doesn't have thumbs. I shut it off and laid there groggily.

    I finally looked at the clock and said - crap. It was 12:30! Working out was out. I needed to get a shower, grab coffee and allergy medicine and go volunteer at the Planned Parenthood Book Sale. It was day three.

    This time I was a volunteer coordinator. That meant three hours of walking, running, answering questions, corralling carts, lifting boxes and handling money. Turns out it might not have been the worst thing that I missed the workout. By the end of the day on concrete, my knees are hurting.

    Tonight I worked for Marianne on the Star 70's show. You would think, after 3.5 hours on my feet earlier today, I would sit for the show. Nope. I'm not sure I even know how to sit during an air shift. Right now I am sitting down for the first time in about 9 hours. I am feeling for factory workers, big time.

    Well, right now my eyes are crossing, because I am tired. So good night.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Thursday, September 11, 2008

    Roses for my Birthday

    These are the roses I got for my birthday. They were from the man in my life. (And my mom.)
    That's right, when my mom asked my nephew Caelen what she should get me for my birthday he said, "I think she would like roses Grandma." So, on Monday, there was my mom holding these. They are beautiful and awesome, just like the people I got them from.

    Special note - we are raising one hell of a good man!

    Yours in (mental) health, Kate

    Wednesday, September 10, 2008

    My Left Knee

    No, this isn't a sequel to "My Left Foot". I will not be talking about an artist who is mostly paralyzed but can miraculously play guitar.

    I walked instead of running yesterday for my 37 minutes. On my way up to Valley High School my knee started hurting. I blew it off and kept going because I live by the expression, "Walk it off". It got a little better and I stared down the Valley track.

    When I was in high school, I couldn't run all of the way around it. I would pant, bitch, moan and inevitably slow to a walk (almost crawl) while thinking my heart could probably explode at 17. So, on the way to the school, which was really about making a loop past it and heading back to the gym, I decided the track and I were going to come to terms.

    I approached the blacktop and it looked as daunting as ever, amazing the tricks the mind plays. I took lane 8 - the outside lane - and started in earnest. The track yawned out in front of me like a big black tiger that would rather consume me than let me run. I started running harder, I have no idea why. I finished the 1/4 mile-lap in 2:20. Not bad. That fat high school girl has retired.

    Anyway, the knee. I had to walk harder to cover the same distance back to the club. By the time I got back I knew my knee was cranky, but today it's out-right pissed off.

    This is the knee I had to have rebuilt 10 years ago (all original parts) after an idiot ran through me rather than around when playing softball. (He was out so HA!) With that knowledge, I have a theory - the warranty is up on the reconstruction. If this persists, as it has on and off for months, I will have to call the doc. For now, I am going home to fry my core.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    P.S. - the 37 Workout went great yesterday and trainer Traci thought it was a great idea.

    Tuesday, September 9, 2008

    The 37 Workout

    Today is my first full day of being 37. I was born at 11:52 p.m., so I was technically only 37 for 8 minutes yesterday. To that end (and because I was too tired to go yesterday), today will be my "Birthday Celebration Workout". I don't think normal people use those words together.

    Since I am now 37, I have decided to do 37 of everything today - in a row. As in:

    37 minute run (that's a 5K+)

    37 squats (cake)
    37 inverted crunches (doable)
    37 push-ups (okay, that's gonna have to be done in multiple sets - but it'll be sets in a row)
    37 bicep curls (love it)
    37 of some other kind of crunch
    37 tricep extension (that's gonna be sore tomorrow)
    37 hamstring on ball moves (I have no idea what it's really called)
    37 shoulder moves (we'll see how far I get after last week's injury)
    37 butt extensions (nope, not even near what's it's really called, but I do it on a machine and I know what it is, so that all that counts)
    37 of whatever I randomly choose at the gym

    Appropriately that is 370 exercises + 37 minutes running. I think I will make this an annual tradition, so it will only get more challenging as I get older. Of course, we'll see what I have to say about this way of thinking at 95! But then, I like to think, I'll always be up for a challenge.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Monday, September 8, 2008

    From the beginning... It's All About Me

    Monday's columns are always about how to get started on a weight loss/ health regime or tips I learned at the beginning of my journey. Today is the ultimate one - It's all about me.

    That may sound conceded or selfish, but it's flat-out the truth. You cannot do this for anyone except yourself. If you do you will fail and worse yet, you will blame that poor unsuspecting schmuck you were 'doing all this for'.

    You will benefit this most from losing the weight - better health, better mental fitness, better relationships, better shopping - so it needs to be all about you. Especially since you are the only one who can keep the pumpkin spice Kisses out of your mouth (damn evil Hershey's people). You are the only one who can put your butt on a treadmill at the gym. You are the only one who is ultimately responsible.

    So, on my 37th birthday, as I take stock of my life, I am grateful to me. I have stumbled, I have failed, I have put another Kiss in my mouth - but I have also come a long way baby. And because of that, I expect to celebrate several decades of birthdays to come and that is the ultimate gift - for me.

    Yours in health, Kate

    I do not know this baby, but this is how much I love birthday cake too.

    Sunday, September 7, 2008

    Sunday Inspiration - CrossFit Success

    My friend Bret sent me this story the other day. I think he realized how much Sue's story would remind me of mine.

    She woke up to the reality of what she had been doing to her body and decided in earnest to deal with it. She was going along on her own, getting results, but wanted to take it to the next level and decided to get a trainer. The trainer got her into CrossFit and today she is leaner and stronger than ever.

    Now, this is where I put my reminder about CrossFit: It's not for beginner's - beginner's puke. (Even some really fit people puke.) Instead you have to have a basic level of fitness before you can meet the tough challenges the workouts put forth.

    Now, that being said - if you are ready for that 'next thing' this is a great choice. The workouts challenge everyone, at every level, because they can be customized. It's a great way to break up your routine and have fun. Every time Bret and I do one, it's fun and I feel accomplished - not every workout can say that.

    So, if you want to know more and see what it's done for Sue, check out this story.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Being Cautious

    I took today off from working out. I decided pushing my luck with the shoulder was a bad idea. It was even bothering me when I jogged. But late tonight it's feeling better.

    I ran short on time today anyway. My Dad and Step-mom Lorie, took me to lunch at Thai Flavors, took me to a movie and gave me a gift card for my birthday. It was way too much for them to do, but ultra-appreciated.

    I went and used part of the gift card right away - I had asked for a gift card for this Chicago Bears jersey I found at Gordman's. It's way cute and just for women. I went and grabbed it and plan to rock it often. (I tried to find a pic to share, but couldn't)

    Like Cubs fans, Bears fans know their limitations and just weather them anyway. Only Cubs fans this year are getting scared, they're waiting for the other shoe to drop. The team is 5 games ahead! Go Cubbies!

    Anyway, better go to bed. Have a good Sunday!

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Friday, September 5, 2008

    Um, ouch

    I tweaked my shoulder yesterday at the gym. At least for once I know exactly what I was doing when I ended up in pain. I was doing assisted pull-ups. Only I was doing the inner part of the machine, so that I worked my biceps hard with my back. Well I was in the midst of my second round, at like number 7 when it felt like a large rubber band snapped me. Then pain. Then I went ahead and tried for the next one - uh, no.

    I stopped, threw down with another set of bicycle crunches, realized how much the shoulder hurt, stretched and called it a workout. I had been going for over an hour between cardio, core and weights, before it happened, so gratefully I did get a full workout in. Still it was annoying and as I typed this I realize it hurts a little more than I was willing to admit earlier this morning.

    When I woke up this morning I was very happy, it was down to dull and almost completely able to be ignored. As the morning has progressed it has moved to sore and noticeable. Once it hits ouch again, I will grab ibuprofen, but not until, I hate to take meds if I don't have to. That's a big step up from when I was obese.

    Everything ached all of the time when I was overweight, so I constantly popped Advil like candy. Then one day I was complaining to my chiropractor about being light headed, so he took my blood pressure. It was high (I traditionally have low blood pressure, even fat) and he asked what I had been eating, etc. When he found out I was popping like 9 Advil a day, he said no more. Within a week and a half my blood pressure had lowered. So ever since then I have only taken drugs when absolutely necessary.

    Anyway, today I will take it much easier when I workout and will not do shoulders. Hopefully by later this weekend, this will have gone away.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Thursday, September 4, 2008

    I am going to find my way to the gym today

    I haven't been inside my gym all week. I took Sunday and Monday off. Tuesday and Wednesday it was running outside and core and light weights inside. Today I must reacquaint myself with cardio machines and free weights.

    And it's perfect timing - it's only 61 degrees outside. With my chilly tendencies lately and the fact that my shoulder throbs when it gets cold, I am grateful for my gym.

    Even though it requires gas to get there. And I am broke. Which is my fault. Which makes me stressed. Which means I need to workout even more. Which means I need to stop typing, now.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Wednesday, September 3, 2008

    Cooling Down

    By the time I hit the street to run yesterday the temp had dropped about five degrees and the humidity by 25%. It was comfortable, in fact, just about perfect to run.

    For a couple of days now I have been nursing my back and wondering why I was queasy. As I was stretching yesterday I found my back had improved and realized the problem with my tummy - snot. That's right, mucus.

    I used to have allergies pretty badly, but they were yet another health malady that went away as I lost weight. The last two weeks though I have been sneezing again, suffering headaches, and now I realize, getting erpy from post-nasal drip.

    That realization, along with the Dixie Chicks' "Sin Wagon" coming on my headset, fired me up. I headed out the door with a vengeance. It was all sprints and hard walks. Half way back the temp cooled another five degrees and the wind started to blow. That was inconvenient as my right shoulder has taken to aching fiercely when it gets too cool. But I sucked it up and kept running. After two days off, there was no way I wasn't going to.

    Today is supposed to be even cooler, which is great. As much as my shoulder hurts, it means I can run outside again and do weights and core at home. That saves me gas money, because I don't have to go across town to the gym.

    That's one of the things I have been thinking about lately, cooling down means winter will be here before we know it. Last year I missed several workout sessions due to butt-high snow. This year I won't allow that. I need to get some new dumbbells and a stationary bike or something for cardio. Or maybe I will go ultra cheap and just rent a different exercise video every week from the library. That's an interesting thought.

    Well, I realize this has been a bit of a rambling post, but I don't think I am awake yet, despite having been up since 2:35 this morning. Anyway, break over, time to work. Have a good day!

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Tuesday, September 2, 2008

    Two Days Off

    I took Sunday off from exercise. I was sore all over. Three days of hitting it hard and I was paying the price.

    Yesterday I took the day off as well. It was a combination of still being quite sore in my upper back (from both the pole dancing and working my lats with weights) and frankly, I was feeling lazy.

    Yesterday was my first full week day off, um, well... It's been a long time. So when I woke up and my back still hurt, I thought it was probably a sign.

    So, the sum total of what I did yesterday was - get up, eat breakfast, lay around petting cats, shower, meet family for lunch, eat too much, run quick errand at Target, go home and become way too sleepy, eat just small bowl of cereal and strawberries for dinner, pack workout gear and food for work, go to bed at 5:30 p.m. That's right, no typo there. I slept a good portion of the time between 5:30 and 2:30 a.m. too.

    Lori said I probably needed it, if I was nodding off at 4 yesterday. She was probably right. Today I am doing much better though.

    This afternoon I will hit the gym hard and I plan a full week of doing just that. So, the time off is gone and I am all back 'on'.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Sunday, August 31, 2008

    Sunday Inspiration - For Teens

    My weight problems started in my teens. I had unknowingly suffered from depression for a couple of years and I was looking for a friend. Sugar highs make you feel good and my sad relationship was born. Add to that the fact that we were poor and the food in the house didn't have the nutritional building blocks you need to maintain a healthy weight and all of us ended up overweight.

    I look back all of the time and wish someone would have taken me aside and stopped me before I got of of my teens. When you are young you can reset your metabolism at the drop of a hat. But alas, I waited two decades to learn my lesson.

    That's one of the reasons I am so passionate about helping educate kids now, basically from birth, on proper nutrition and how much fun exercise can be.

    Today's story is a teen who realized that something had to change and acted. He was able to give up the high-fat, sugary staples of the high school crowd and exercise as well. He's a great inspiration, his name is Chris.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Fitness Pole Dancing

    Yesterday's workout festival started with trainer Traci putting me through my paces at FWW. She did a great job of pushing me. It was a lot better than the last time we met when I felt like I was slogging through wet cement.

    One thing we did have to adjust for was my left knee. It really talked back a couple of times. I'm not sure if it was the running, biking or elliptical from the preceding days, but something made it cranky. So we just modified a few moves and I was fine. However, Traci told me no cardio for today to give the knee a chance to rest. Boooo! But, she's right. I just did weights today instead and some strengthening and lengthening moves for my legs, quads and glutes.

    As for fitness pole dancing? It was a BLAST! I have never had so much fun working out. It was an introductory class/ party, we had about 18 girls to start (some had to get home to their kids) and we let our inhibitions fall to the floor. Because our group was so big, it only cost us $20 each and was worth every penny.

    We met at Kees Camp, where owner and instructor Jen Kees put us through our paces. She taught us a small routine, showed us a number of tricks with the poles and then she and our hostess Sam performed full routines. It was enlightening, sexy and definitely a workout.

    Jen Kees had never pole danced before she started the school. She (as did I) heard about it on the coasts about 18 months ago and thought, "why do the coasts get to have the fun?" Rather than wait for the movement to come here, which with fitness usually takes about 3 years, she went and learned and brought it to the metro.

    Not only is this workout style empowering, but it shreds your muscles and, once you really get going, is even good for your heart. Immediately after the workout I felt it in my upper back and abs, two areas I am particularly interested in. I'll be honest, I also walked away with a few bruises. But when you are first flinging yourself around a pole, it's going to happen.

    I am seriously considering taking the class on a regular basis this winter. I think it will be a nice way to break things up once it gets cold. There's also the added benefit of having some special moves to share with the male species - if they are good. ;)

    I am already planning to throw an introductory party of my own. I had a lot of girlfriends who wanted to try it, but were gone for the holiday weekend. Plus my friend Marianne (who is a natural) had girlfriends that missed out and (new Drake college student) Ciera wants to get the girls together as well.

    By the way, if you are looking for some party fun, this is a great choice. It could be for bachelorettes, birthdays, anything really. (Even divorce as one person suggested!) Really anytime you want to get the girls together to laugh and have fun, this is a nice break from the bar scene.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Friday, August 29, 2008

    A Day Full of Workouts

    Running way too short on time.

    Just FYI -

    Workout #1 - With trainer Traci. (Headed there now.)

    Workout #2 - Going for brief run while clothes wash at laundromat.

    Workout #3 - Trying a fitness pole dancing class tonight.

    Will tell you about 1 & 3 tomorrow.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Thursday, August 28, 2008


    My car is having issues - AGAIN. So yesterday when I needed to get to a meeting of our entire radio group, I parked my car and ran. Luckily it's very low key because five minutes into my run the temperature went up five degrees and the humidity about 30%. By the time I arrived at the Botanical Center, I was soaked.

    I toweled off as best I could in the bathroom. Sat through the meeting. Had a couple of crackers/cheese and some fruit at the social hour and then headed back out the door.

    I intended to walk up to Grand Avenue and grab the trolley to 15th and then walk the last 10 minutes home. The trolley was nowhere to be seen, so I just started walking. About three blocks in I decided to say forget the trolley and just keep walking - goodness knows I need the exercise.

    However, just as I had left the Bot Center the sun came up and half way through the walk the humidity nearly over ran me. The next thing you know, I am literally soaked. By the time I got home my workout clothes were sopping and my hair looked like I put it in a bucket of water.

    And at the moment I was peeling my shirt off I had the same thought we all do - "Why can't you actually sweat your butt off?" Because I guarantee mine would have been pooled on the floor.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Wednesday, August 27, 2008


    All last winter and spring I was freezing. Constantly cold, hands like ice, people thought it was freakish.

    This summer I evened out a bit and spent most of the time feeling just right. I thought my body had finally caught up with the changes and had reset my internal HVAC system. They say that has to happen after a major weight loss. Think again.

    The last week it has been slowly cooling down in Iowa. Not really during the day, we are still in the 80's then, but at night we are dipping into the upper 50's. My idea of a perfect day is sunny and 75 during the day, clear and 55 a night, so this should make me pretty happy. Only one problem, I'm cold again.

    Yesterday I had to borrow a jacket from Laurie in the sales department to walk down to Starbuck's. Right now I am typing in between bouts of rubbing my arms to remove goose bumps. And I am thinking about how I am going to get my coffee, because it is too cool to walk to Starbuck's - again.

    I guess this weekend the one purchase I will make is a fall jacket. I don't actually own one. I put it off to see how much I was going to lose. I think I am in the range where I will end up settling. Plus, with my ample breasts and broad shoulders, I don't think anything less than a large will do.

    Before you think I am complaining - ie. stupid woman griping about losing weight and now she's {whine} cold. I am not, I just wanted you to know, there are many sides to losing weight, some more surprising than others.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    Get Outside

    I know I preached about making the most of good weather yesterday, but dang, it was so nice. I just starting walking, then running. I didn't have a plan, I just stepped out the door at work and went.

    The next thing you know I am down at Principal Park (Home of the division winning Iowa Cubs!) and I decide to make the turn to Gray's Lake. I've mentioned before that the lake is this precious jewel in the middle of my very urban city, but today it was especially cool.

    As I ran through the park there were butterflies everywhere working their way through the freshly regrown brush. The park was, as usual, overrun by water during June's floods. It was left devastated and filthy. The Des Moines Parks and Rec employees and countless volunteers have brought it back in an amazing way.

    Well, the butterflies were joined by a myriad of grasshoppers. The birds were singing, the crickets creaking and the water bright blue from the reflection of the sky. I stopped a couple of times, just to take it all in. The coolest thing was the blue heron I saw. He was just standing in shallow river water near the other bank of the Raccoon River. In fact I have never seen a blue heron that was so blue. I stood and watch him for a few minutes while he preened and caught bugs, I loved it.

    Today looks to be perfect again and while I had vowed not to run two days in a row, I can't imagine not taking advantage of the weather. Especially since it's my parents anniversary. Why is that significant? Because that means it's August 26th, just a few days from September. The earliest recorded snowfall in state history happened in September! LOL. Probably not this year, but still, got to make the most of it.

    I'm gonna get outside again. Not just because it's nice, but as you can see from above, it's also a nice mental break.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Monday, August 25, 2008

    From the beginning... Enjoy the weather

    It is disgustingly nice outside today. The kind of nice that begs the question, "What the hell are you still doing behind the computer?" Well, I am blogging, but I swear it will be short because the outdoors are waiting for me.

    That's my tip I learned early on - if it's nice, get outside. Not only will it help keep you from being bored (the scenery changes constantly) but fresh air and sun are your friends. Fresh air help you learn to breath deeper, because it's clean and your lungs want more.

    The sun is your friend, but so is sunscreen. You can still get the vitamin D your body needs from the sun with sunscreen on. That vitamin D is good for your heart, helps your body absorb calcium and helps you have strong bones, teeth, etc.

    Plus I find two things are true of my workouts outside - I push myself harder and they tend to last longer. I think that's because, when it's 75 degrees and sunny - like it is right now - who doesn't want to be healthy and active.

    Yours in health, Kate

    Sunday, August 24, 2008

    Sunday Inspiration - Shawn Johnson and her Parents

    She's 16 years old. She's 4' 9" and weighs about 90 pounds. She's intelligent, determined, friendly and has a smile so bright she's started a worldwide fire. She is Shawn Johnson winner of one gold and three silver medals at the Beijing Olympics. She also happens to live in my metro area.

    I live just off downtown Des Moines and Shawn lives in West Des Moines in a house her father built, not as a contractor, but with his own hands. Her parents, Doug and Teri, have done an amazing job. While Shawn is indeed an elite athlete, one of the best in the world, she is also just an Iowa teen.

    With her parents guidance Shawn has trained full-time to be an Olympic star, while keeping her eye on graduating from high school and having as normal a life as possible. Doug and Teri have never pressured Shawn to be a star sports figure, just that if you are going to commit to something, follow through. On the other hand, if she lost her passion, they didn't want her to feel pressure to keep performing - it's all been up to her. In a world where you hear horror stories about 'stage parents' and kids being pushed to illness while training to act, play sports or dance, Doug and Teri have used their Iowa values to help Shawn have balance.

    I have had the pleasure of interviewing Shawn, Doug and Teri a couple of times. Each time I was moved and inspired by their love. They are their own team, just like a family should be. And Shawn is clear on how much she is loved and I believe that is why she has an edge over so many athletes.

    So, congratulations to Shawn on winning in Beijing! And to Doug and Teri for winning the ultimate - the award for raising a kind, happy, well-adjusted teen. (Oh, and she just happens to be a world class athlete too.)

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Saturday, August 23, 2008


    Barack Obama nearly ruined my workout yesterday.

    I was waiting for the man (o.k., his staff) to text me the name of his vice presidential running mate, so I didn't want my cell phone far away. I wanted to be able to get it on the air if he sent it at a reasonable hour. (He did not, he blew it and the Associated Press broke it late last night. Then he texted me at 6:24 a.m.! - It's Biden, in case you missed it.)

    Well, I hate when people have their cell phone with them at the gym. Mostly because, if you're not a surgeon, what could possibly be so important that you can't put your phone to bed for an hour? But I digress.

    Anyway, I decided I couldn't be parted from my cell, but still wanted a workout. So, I improvised. I danced in my apartment, did some core and used my own body weight to do arms and lower body.

    I know I have mentioned this before, but you do not have to buy a bunch of equipment to get started or even, in my case, to be covered for impromptu needs like these. A few key exercises and a willingness to bring your heart rate up in some form other than running, can get you what you need on 'one of those days'.

    You may be wondering what exercises are useful in these cases. I could list a few, but they won't teach you technique. So instead I encourage you to check out Women's Health or use Google. You will find both the exercise and a good explanation of how to do it, in some cases there's even a video.

    So, today's advice, don't sit it out, improvise.

    Yours in fitness, Kate

    Friday, August 22, 2008


    As has been made abundantly clear on this blog - I struggle like everyone else. There are days when I am down, I have no energy, I talked smack to myself, I want more and don't know how to get it or I am just in a general funk. I was talking with someone last week who is having a little trouble with the mental game and while I advised that 'we all go through that', inside I smiled - my times are fewer and fewer.

    While I was overweight people told me I had such a 'pretty face' and a 'nice smile'. As I have lost weight people have said I have an 'infectious smile', I 'light a room' and I am 'unstoppable energy'. There was a period where I couldn't accept those compliments because I thought they were just saying them because I was thinner and people respond better to healthier looking people.
    Then I realized I really couldn't accept what they were saying because I didn't see it. I would look in the mirror and see me, the old me - overweight, miserable, sluggish and dragging through life out of necessity, not passion. I still struggle with this sometimes. I still see the 'fat girl' when I look in the mirror. I spent the majority of my life with only one reality, so when I catch my reflection now, it is surreal to me.

    However, by and large, what I see in the mirror is a happy person. Happy. That's not a word I bandied around much except with reference to holidays. Now it's often an answer I give to "how are you?" Yes, I am struggling with romance. Yes, my job has changed which is causing stress. Yes, I am once again caught in a battle between food and my self-respect. But overall, I am happy.

    I've looked hard at that and know that it's not because I lost weight, it's because I know care about myself and my life in a way I never have before. While I have always been a passionate person, I am now about living my passion. I seize the moment, I love spontaneity, I try not to turn down fun - I live. And that makes me happy.

    By the way, here's what a healthier, happier Kate looks like. (It's from the all new LITE 104.1 site.)

    Yours in (mental) health, Kate