Monday, December 31, 2012

2012: Year in Review & 2013: Goals!

Well, it's the dawn of a new year.  2012 was a stellar year for me and as such, it deserves a little reflection.  I think a list is in order.

Notable events in 2012:
  1. I changed shoes.  At the Marin 10k I did a video run analysis and the guy recommended I try out shoes with a low heel-to-toe ratio.  Most shoes are 8mm offset but my new Brooks Pureflow (which aren't so new anymore) are only 4mm.  They've served me well.  
  2. I was diagnosed with exercise induced asthma.  I'm still learning to manage the wheezing, and fortunately for me it isn't a huge interference.  But I think using the inhaler before a run (when I remember) makes a big difference in my performance.
  3. I fell in love with running.  It wasn't until I started training for my first half-marathon, when I started doing long runs, that I started to enjoy the tranquility, the quiet satisfaction, the exhilaration that can come from a good run.  Yeah, I'm sure I finally got those endorphins, or "runner's high" that everyone talks about.  I spent years hating the run, so this is a pretty big deal.  And I also realized I can run at an average pace (whatever that means).  I figured I'd always be at the back-of-the-pack, but now I know the middle is totally attainable for me.
  4. I tried a bunch of new things.  Pilates, Crossfit, Dailey Method, Boot Camp - all new ways to exercise that I tried in 2012.  And 2013 is going to bring a pole dancing class!  Other things I want to try in 2013 are Stand-Up Paddleboard and maybe re-visit yoga.
  5. I celebrated 5 years of blogging.  That's probably more like 20 years in blog years.  And 5 years of blogging means 5 years of commitment to a healthy lifestyle.  Mixed in there were two pregnancy-related hiatuses but each time I made a comeback and I think blogging helped me do that.  I couldn't disappear into the blogosphere!
  6. I conquered Marshall Wall.    I never thought I'd have the ability to ride up a seriously big, long hill.  But I realized I could probably ride up a not-so-serious big hill and on that day, I decided to  go for the real deal.  A hill with a name.  Marshall Wall stood out in my mind as an impossible climb.  But climb it I did, slowly but surely.  Hills don't scare me (or my bike) anymore.  Well, except for the downhill part, but I hope to work on that in 2013.
  7. I started taking vitamins.  People have been telling me for years that they would help but I was stubborn.  Plus, I'm not good at taking a pill every day, though the payoff has really helped me to remember.  I'm not tired at the end of the day like I used to be. Now I'm taking a multi-vitamin, a B complex, a Glucosamine/Chondroitin pill, and recently added CoQ10.  
  8. I took a backpacking trip in Yosemite.  I've always wanted to backpack.  I did the customary train trip across Europe in my 20's but that's not the same as a backcountry outing.  I got to meet and spend the weekend with some super-fun women and experience a peaceful commune with nature.  It was a high point of the year for sure.
  9. My blog hit the big-time!  Ok, maybe not the big, big-time but big enough for me.  I was listed on's 10 Weight Loss Bloggers You Should Follow and I was interviewed by the Half Size Me show.  I added a Facebook page and I absolutely LOVE my FB peeps!  They inspire and encourage me on a daily basis.
  10. I ran a half-marathon!  Not only did I do my first half-marathon, the Kaiser half in San Francisco, but I went on to run another before the year was out, the Livermore Grape Stomp.  In fact, it was a great year for race events. I survived the Cinderella Century, a mud run, the Marin 10k, threw in a Tri for Fun, and had a memorable Marin Sprint triathlon too (I still can't believe how smart I was to switch to the sprint distance).  Oh, and I ran my first Turkey Trot, something I hope to do every year.
  11. I reached my goal weight.  After 5 years, 8 months and 25 days, on Friday, November 9th 2012, I finally hit that number, 145, to which I'd been aspiring.  Some of you have been following me since my humble beginnings.  Thank you, my fine readers, for all the support, ideas, encouragement and inspiration.  Every time I've needed a cheer, or feedback, or advice, or even a kick in the pants - you've been there.  I can't underestimate the power of this blog as part of my journey.  Weight Watchers recommends Anchoring, a process for creating cues and triggers to remind yourself of your weight goal and the inner resources you have to achieve it.  This blog is my anchor, and everyone that reads and comments are part of that.  Ack, this is making me emotional!   
Wow!  What a year.  When I started this post I didn't appreciate how much I accomplished this year.  If 2013 is even half as good, I'll be happy.  

Which brings me to goals for 2013.  Without further ado...
  1. Swim, bike, run...with a number on me.  I have a lot of races planned for 2013, first of which is the Kaiser half marathon coming up soon.  My goal for 2013 is to do all the races I can, to strive to do my best, but most important, to have fun while doing them!  And I also plan to try more new things in the coming year, like the Stand-Up Paddleboard and the pole dancing class I mentioned.
  2. Reach 25% body fat.  Although 145 was my goal weight I've always thought that would put me at 25% body fat. But according to my Tanita scale I hover between 27 and 28% body fat.  I want to gain more muscle and lose a bit of fat.  I want to get stronger and leaner.  Not because I want to lose weight, or get smaller, but because I want to see more of the muscle I've worked so hard to get.  Oh how I wish I could include getting a tummy tuck in this process but that's probably not in the cards for this coming year.
  3. Maintain, maintain, maintain.  From the very beginning I've said that "Maintenance is the only reason I'm back."  Well, 2013 is my year to maintain.  This past year I had my first birthday at goal weight.  Next year this time I plan to be wrapping up my first full calendar year maintaining that goal.  I don't yet know what challenges I might face in the coming year, who knows what the cards might hold, but change is inevitable and sometimes life throws us a curve ball (or we throw life a curve ball).  If either comes to pass, I plan to hit it out of the park...or at least not get knocked down by it.  
There you have it, my goals for 2013.  I'm thinking of doing 30 posts in 31 days to kick-off the new year. Not going to make a firm commitment to this because blogging sometimes gets pushed down the priority list in the face of other things but right now it sounds like a fun idea. I'd love to hear your resolutions or see links to your goals/resolutions if you have them.  A goal shared is more likely to be reached.  Happy New Year!


  1. Michelle,
    I'm a new reader and have been checking your blog daily! You make it sound so fun and sort of...easy? Eek! Anyway, I have gained about 12 lbs. since I got married in July 2011 and I wasn't really thin to begin with. I am 5'2'' and currently weigh 158! I feel comfortable at 142ish so my goal is to get down to 140. I'm not setting a time limit. I am already an active person and a runner. This spring I'll be doing my 3rd half marathon. :) Food is my problem and tomorrow I am planning on eating less of the bad stuff! Happy New Year!

    1. Thanks for reading! It can be easy, just go at a comfortable pace, that's the secret. So many people try to go too hard too soon, you know? Have you tried Weight Watchers? Lots of people join to lose smaller amounts of weight and it's very motivating. Happy New Year!

    2. Actually I tried it back in March 2011 for several months. I only did the online one though. I liked it. But I realized that I think I am better at calorie tracking instead, as I did not always know how many WW points the foods I made were worth, and I do cook a lot of my own recipes. Needless to day, I do love a lot of the WW recipes and still use them today.

      As far as food goes, what is your typical day of eating look like?

    3. It varies a lot, depends on how I've been eating. But I have cereal every morning for breakfast, Kashi GoLean. A snack around 10am (a lean protein and fruit usually). Lunch is usually a salad and whatever the cafeteria at work is serving. Another snack around 4pm. Then dinner is usually a lean protein, a carb and veggies. That's a clean day, not every day is like that.

  2. WOOO HOOO! It was a stellar year! And you are right 2013 is going to be even better!!!

    1. Thanks MaryFran!! I sure hope it is, though 2012 will be hard to beat.

  3. Hey michelle I've been at this thing with you all those years and had 2 kids too. I still have a long way to go but I am still doing it. Thank you for your inspiration and long distance companionship on this road of health, fitness and self acceptance. You are looking so fit and fantastic and you are living! This is what I aspire to! Happy 2013

    1. I know, can you believe all this has happened over the years? I love seeing all your fitness updates on FB. This is a journey with no destination, we're all always aspiring!! Happy new year!

  4. Wow what a wonderful year you've had! I'm so glad to have found your blog this year, I have found it very helpful and inspiring - thank you! Here is a list of my goals for 2013:

    I also asked my friends and family to "assign" me a number of miles to run / walk / bike this year and the count is currently at 375.9, so I definitely have my work cut out for me in that department!

    1. Thank you :) Just checked out your goals, very reasonable. And 375.9 - woah sister! Go for it!! I'm glad you found my blog too, I always appreciate you cheering me on!! I agree with you, Bring it 2013!

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