Monday, November 28, 2011


I've NEVER wanted to be a runner, never thought about running, always thought runners were a little touched in the head.
My father who has been obese his whole life, used to run when I was a little girl and I remember him getting his whole outfit on to go and run laps around Washington Square Park. (apparently 1 time around the park is 1/2 a mile) I also remember how much he hated it and even when he was running, he would mock the other hardcore runners who ran no matter what the weather.

EVERYONE in Hoboken runs so I guess it was just a matter of time before I fell in line. I've quickly come to realize that there is a serious science to this running thing and there are a lot of dos and don'ts when it comes to your stride, your footfall, your body position and your pace.
Knowing I'm never going to be a serious runner, but knowing that I do want to get that Disney 5K under my belt I've been playing around with how I hold my body and the distance of my stride and my pace.

Most of my runner friends seem to prefer a large stride. Cover more distance with each stroke of your leg. Makes perfect sense for those that have longer legs. I found today that if I try for a longer stride, I get tired much quicker and it feels really awkward. I have short legs and have to work with what I've got and a shorter stride feels more comfortable to me.

This amuses me because back when I had horses I always preferred a shorted stride like that of a pony vs a larger horse with a longer stride. The bigger the stride (the more distance covered with each footfall) the more out of control I always felt.  Guess I'm just a pony at heart!

Today as I was doing my warmup laps I found what felt like the perfect position for me. I had a not so fast pace going but the way I was holding myself felt really comfortable and my stride felt solid and comfy. I also found that I wasn't as out of breath as I usually am.

We have 9 days till our Disney trip and I've been doing my homework on the jogging trails that are around our hotel. I've found the one I'm going to attempt each morning.
It's a loop that is .8 miles.

Discussing the fact that I'm planning on running anywhere is still really odd to me...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Horses

Growing up, I was fortunate enough to have horses in my life.

 Smooching on my father's horse Moet.

 Foxhunting pal named Nuzzler. He was an awesome horse.
 Nuzzler and I again getting ready to jump a picnic table.
 My horse. Bunker Hill.
 At our friend's farm.
 Bunker Hill & I at a horse show at Pace University.

Horse Show.

 I started to ride at about 6 years old and got my whole family into it. My father and I were the ones that were really passionate about it though and he and I still really miss it. 

Bunk & I  I miss the blonde hair almost as much as I miss the horse

Horse Show

I'm riding Nuzzler in this video. The two guys I'm with were my dad's two best pals at the time. Yes, I AM riding in a black leather motorcycle jacket. What? Would you expect a metal chick to ride in something else?! 

1990 would make me all of 17 years old in this video. This is shot at Claremont in NYC. My senior year in high school I kept Bunk there and every day after school I'd go to the barn and take him to Central Park.  He kept me away from all the bad things bored teenagers do after school. My friends went to Central Park to get high on drugs. I took my horse to Central Park and got high on taking him for a flat out no holds barred gallop. You haven't lived till you've galloped on an off the track thoroughbred.

I sincerely miss riding and would love to do it again. I miss the way they smell, how they sound, how it feels to fly over a fence. I miss that bond between horse and rider. Maybe one day I'll be able to afford it again.

That is all. I'm done with this wander down memory lane. Carry on...

Monday, November 21, 2011

MS Climb to the Top Event

On Sunday March 4th, 2012 I will once again be a part of the National MS Society's "Climb to the Top" event.
I will climb 66 stories or 1255 individual steps to the top of Rockefeller Center Center in NYC.

I'm climbing for my aunt, my husband's aunt & his co-worker, for my friend Patricia and for everyone else out there who suffers from the debilitating disease that is Multiple Sclerosis.

This unique stair climb fundraiser is hosted by the New York City - Southern New York Chapter of the National MS Society. Participants and sponsors will raise critical funds in direct support of national MS research and the hundreds of comprehensive programs and services the chapter provides the 10,000 residents living with multiple sclerosis in the five boroughs of New York City and Westchester, Putnam, Rockland, Orange and Sullivan counties. MS is a disease of the central nervous system that has no known cause or cure.
My goal this year is to raise $1,000 and I know I will reach it with your help.

You can make a donation by simply clicking on the link to my personal page below or you can write a check - make it payable to Climb to the Top and send it to the address below. Be sure to write my name and account number in the memo section of the check.

National MS Society
attn: Climb to the Top
P.O. Box 10123
Uniondale, NY 11555

My Personal Page

Thank you for your support toward something so important to me.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


Today I went to the studio to do some Kettlebell training with David. He had me run through the test with the 17 pound Kettlebell.
100 swings
16 clean & press on each arm
30 snatches
30 squats

Then he had me do 5 sets of 5 snatches on each arm with the 22 pound bell.

I struggled and felt awkward and frustrated with myself and my total lack of form.
I wondered if it would ever come together for me, if I would ever be able to correctly pull off any of these moves.
At this point, it does not feel comfortable and I cannot get the rhythm or the groove. I feel blobby and ungraceful. I feel fat and like a complete amateur.
I feel as though I have absolutely no business going after my certification when I'm this green with simple movements.

Of course, feeling this way only serves to fuel my fire and feed the stubborn passionate ego that I call my own. It hardens my resolve to work twice as hard till I have that breakthrough moment, where I have even one of the moves (the moves that elude me are the simple, basic swing and the downswing of the snatch) executed properly.

I will not give up and will dedicate whatever time it takes to get it right.  I don't like to feel uncomfortable with something I love so much.

Having said that, my arms are hurty...

Here are the videos. I've changed the audio to something nicer to listen to than David and I yap...He and I could talk the ears off of any sane human.

On another note, do you see what his 5 year old son is doing?! That's right. Freakin CHINUPS!! And not just one. Oh no. No. He does 10. HE'S FIVE YEARS OLD!!! Jesus Christ. I've got so much catching up to do!

YouTube doesn't care for videos that are longer than 15 mins so I've had to break up the workout he had me do into two parts.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Disney World Food

We have 25 days till our next Disney World trip and while I'm very excited there is also some anxiety which I've not ever experienced before.
I'm concerned about meals and snacks. Disney World has amazing food. Stop laughing! I'm serious! It's so good that when I'm not there, I dream about and crave much of the food from past meals.
Here look. Photos of food.

Food is as much a part of what we look forward to as visiting Mickey Mouse is. I have more than a few favorite meals that are less than healthy and do far too much consuming of sugar and snacks.

This trip HAS to be different though. I'm working so hard that to throw it all away on one week of over the top, caution to the wind snarfing would be a very stupid move.

While I know this and I know it's what I have to do, I know that I will be spending much of my time there feeling sorry for myself and cranky that I cannot eat the food I want to eat.

I know that this trip should not focus on what I can't have and what I'm denying myself but rather on how good I look and feel and how much fun I'm having.

I know I will find myself sitting, watching everyone eat their snacks while I have to wait for a meal or I get to snack on Almonds that I've packed and brought with me.
(Let me tell you, the first member of my party who orders either a gingerbread muffin or the banana bread pudding at the Main Street Bakery in Magic Kingdom jumps right to the top of my shit list and I will seriously consider not speaking to them for the rest of the trip)

I know at our meals I'll either be skipping dessert or ordering the sugar free option.

To help myself along and to try to "get right" with these new choices I have to make and try to not feel so angry and sad at not being able to order what I want but rather what I should I've been doing homework and looking at all the menus. I need to know what I'm going to be eating so I can stay strong and make the right choices.

25 days to get my head in the game and get these changes right.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


So apparently I'm going to be able to do this 5k in my sleep. All you need to do is be able to keep a 16 minute mile to not get scooped up by the "pacers" who will be right behind the last wave of folks.

Considering that I walk a 20 minute mile without really rushing, I'm feeling a little bit more confident about this whole thing. That plus in all the videos I've watched of the event so many folks are walking.

NOT that I'm planning on walking but it's comforting to know that this event isn't just for serious "leave Diana in the dust" runners.

I'm still going to train to run the whole course and will continue to visualize myself running the whole thing. Knowing it's a full 5k but it's not timed or as serious as some other races makes me think that this is really and truly the perfect race for me to be involved in so I can check "running a 5k" off my bucket list.

We are actually heading down to Disney in a month and I'll be looking at EPCOT with this course in mind and with this course in mind I'm going to plan on doing some running along the jogging trails they have there.

Epcot Area Resorts
Your hosts at WDW have identified 4 running courses in this area, which are identified on the map. The first path covers 7/8 mile and runs along the Boardwalk Canal. Very little shading makes this one of those courses which should be reserved for cooler times of the day. This course is most easily accessed from the Dolphin and Swan, as well as the Boardwalk Resort.

Course #2 is essentially a large loop around the Yacht Club and Beach Club Resorts, while following Epcot Resorts Boulevard. It covers 1.3 miles and is fairly easy to reach from any of the resorts. The map also identifies a 1/4 mile section of course from the Dolphin and Swan hotels that can be added on to either of these courses.

Course #3 is roughly 0.8 mile and travels around Crescent Lake. This is the most central course to the area, and can be reached easily from all of the resorts. This course in particular gives the runner a chance to sample the varying "flavor" of each resort as you pass through it. These first three courses cover wide wooden walkways as well as paved paths with excellent visibility.
Throughout this area, you can catch glimpses of Epcot, including Spaceship Earth and the Eiffel Tower. In addition, distance can be added to these courses by following the walkways to Epcot and to MGM Studios.

Course #4 is the longest course, following along Epcot Resorts Boulevard and part of Buena Vista Drive. The scenery is largely devoid of water views, which is a change from the other courses in the resorts. The winding sidewalk and rolling terrain for parts of this course require the runner to use caution. There is very little room on the grass beside the sidewalk in places, so it is not always easy to avoid pedestrian traffic. It is only partially shaded, and therefore not a good choice for the hotter parts of the day.

I have never worked out while at Disney. I've always said I will, and have wanted to but the gym has all these machines I'll never know how to use and besides, I'm walking about 13 miles each day!

This trip though, this one is special and different. I have a goal and I'm seriously motivated to make it happen. I keep telling myself

"The Diana of the future will thank the Diana of today"

I have a goal here (as I've stated before) and when I have one of those I'm usually really good about keeping on task with the training for whatever the goal might be. This goal requires me to run and so run I shall.

I REALLY want to get started with my running but this week is not cooperating with me and it's going to be a total wash. (Kids are home till Monday for NJ Teacher Conferences) The only running I'll get is what we do on the loading dock at Boot Camp.

Granted that today he had us run three laps at the end of class and were it not for a fellow boot camper urging me on I would have punked out on them but running the loading dock is different than going around the block for a jog. (or at least that's what I'm telling myself)

I compensated by pushing extra hard in class today and will do the same again tomorrow. 

Monday, November 7, 2011

and she's off....

So in a weird "everthing happens for a reason" moment I went to the Post offices today (again, that's the NY Post, not the Post Office) to get my book, get weighed and measured and have my "before" photos taken.

The book I got?

This book wasn't picked for me. It's one of the books the publisher sent to the newspaper. Perfect right?
I've only had a chance to read the introduction (Author is VERY proud of himself and tells us more than a few of his accomplishements in the first couple of pages - ICK. This does nothing but make me think you are an asshole.)

I read this paragraph and I'm curious to see where this book is going to try to take my exercise routine.
Click on photo to enlarge

I did Boot Camp this morning with my new found " I can & I will" motto. Class still kicked my ass.
I had David take video of it so I can truly see my progress over the next 6 weeks.

I should also add that I am by no means going to cut all this off at the end of 6 weeks. These changes I'm making I hope to make for life. This 6 weeks is just my jump start.

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Tomorrow is my first weigh in and then I have 6 weeks to follow this diet and lose as much weight as I can.
I'm getting myself mentally geared up tonight and I can't help but think that this must be what serious atheletes feel like before a meet or a match or an event.

I had set my goal at 20 pounds over the course of these next 6 weeks. That's a total of a little over 3 pounds a week.
I told David my goal and he said I should aim to lose a pound a day.
My initial reaction was that he was off his goddamn rocker and that was NEVER going to happen but I can't shake that little voice that keeps saying;
"Why the hell not?"

Go big or go home right? So in that vein I'm going to throw myself heart soul mind and body into this thing to push myself as hard as I can and take off as much as I can in these next 6 weeks. I'm not going to limit myself to just 20 pounds. Why not push harder and try for more?

"When I go after something, I want to go after it with everything I have. I want to push myself to the edge."

I know it's going to hurt and there are going to be times I feel deprived and sorry for myself and ready to throw in the towel but I also know I need to push past all of those moments and remember that my new motto is

Or if you want to quote one of the men I admire most in this world;

"All our dreams can come true - if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney

I have two white boards on my fridge

I have a brand new mix of songs on my IPOD just for running:
Tomorrow I'm going to CVS and I'm going to get sticky notes and markers and I'm going to write myself notes and put them all over the place and I'm going to make a poster with things that motivate me. Ideas, images, places, moments.

I'm READY for this!!


I've been accepted to be part of a NY Post article!!

It's a 6 week long weight loss book review of sorts.
Tomorrow (Monday) I'll go to the Post's office (The NY Newspaper, not to be confused with the place your mail goes) to get weighed and get my before photo taken. They will give me a brand new, unpublished diet book to follow and in 6 weeks I'll go back and have after photos and a weigh in done.

I'm VERY excited and so are Coaches David & Jesse. They are totally on board to help motivate and push me and keep me on track.

My goal is to lose 20 pounds in that 6 weeks. (David thinks my goal should be a pound a day. I'm not sure that's possible or healthy. BUT if it could be done I'd lose 42 pounds which would be the MOST kick ass thing on the entire planet!)

David has told me that I need to write down my goals in short and long term forms.

My daily goal is simple and it's not about weight loss. My daily goal is to keep my eye on the prize and try to be kinder and treat my body better. To try to make the right food choices every day and with everything that goes into my mouth.

My middle term goal actually surprised even when when I thought about it.

This is it: Disney Family 5k

I have 110 days from today to get in shape for it. That means I have to run every single day and push myself.

I'm unsure about the in between goals but I'm working on them. I do know that I will be keeping this massive end goal as the umbrella for all my other goals. This will be  the one I use as motivation, as inspiration as the thing I will not be able to do if I do not stay the course with my short term goals.

The insane thing about this goal is a month ago I hated running and whined and bitched when asked to do it.
I always tell everyone
"I don't even chase after my own kids!"

Jesse took me out for that fateful run and I've now got a new challenge. I want to be able to run more than a block. 

I'm not looking to be a "runner" and I think after I reach my Royal Family 5k goal, I might hang up my running shoes but I want to be able to say that I ran, and finished, a 5k and there is no place better for me than Disney World.

This race appeal to me because it requires more than just signing up and showing up. This race will need the purchase of a plane ticket and hotel room for at least a full weekend. That's a substantial investment and one that I cannot ask my family to make and then not give my best to.

Plus it's a trip to Disney World! (perhaps alone and without my husband and offspring)

There, now I've said it out loud and put it out into the universe and I cannot take it back.

As for my long term goal? I have one and it's a doozy.

I want to sign up for the 70 mile route on this bike tour & follow those 70 miles up with this one.

I suppose to some this might not seem long term but with my kiddos being so young still this isn't going to happen in 2012. It might happen in 2013.

Even beyond that here are two: To bike "La Loire à Vélo" and to one day get back to Ireland to ride cross country again.

In between all of these are the events I want to do again:
Climb to the Top 2012 -March 4th, 2012
5 Boro Bike Tour - May 6th, 2012
Bridges for Autism -  July? 2012
NY Century Bike Tour -Septemner 2012

I'm certain there will be other events this coming year that I want to be a part of. These are just the ones I know of now.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


I woke up this morning and decided today was the day to get back on track. No more screwing around. I gave all the kids Halloween candy to my husband to take to work (including my secret stash) and went to Boot Camp with the chew bubblegum and kick ass mentality.
I went thinking I was only going to take one class this morning and so I gave that class all I had. I pushed myself super hard & today was a total ass kicker. We worked with the sled which we've never done before:
Since I have the ability to completely fool myself into thinking I'm lookin good and haven't put any weight on and I'm "fine" (Aerosmith has a song called F.I.N.E which is an acronym for  "Fucked up, Insecure, Neurotic and Emotional.)The best and quickest way for me to cure these delusions is to have David videotape me working out.

Today was the perfect day because I have something I might be a part of that includes a 3 month complementary gym membership and I told them that I don't do gyms. I do Hoboken Boot Camps only.

I wanted to show them footage of how different HBC is than a gym so I gave David the camera. He of course took no footage in the first class and so I decided to stay for the second.

David taped the second class for me:
(Holy smokes. No hiding from the truth no matter how in denial I might try to be. I really need to knock off the crap and rededicate myself to this project called Diana. FAT to the 10th power!!!)

I am madly in love with that damn sled and though it pushed me to the point where I thought I might throw up and left me panting worse than a dog on a hot summer day I in all my genius push myself to the limit glory suggested that after the second class I push Coach Jesse on the sled.

I mentioned this DURING CLASS not after class like a normal human might have. No, I had the bright idea in the middle of working out. Of course David said HE wanted to play too so I said I'd try to push him on the sled as well.

Never mind what I'd done before and what I'd just set myself up for after class. Jess decided that at the end of class I was going for a short run with her just to be sure before I push live humans on a huge heavy sled I would be exhausted and out of breath.

If I wasn't secure in the fact that these people love me, I'd think they were trying to kill me.

So here it is. Me pushing Jess on the sled, then David wanted to add weight to give me a "real" challenge,(By the way. I'm so NOT laughing. I'm trying not to drop dead. What he saw wasn't a smile. It was a grimace) then me pushing David, and then everyone got in on the act!

Have I told you lately how much I LOVE my Hoboken Boot Camps?

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Today was my first day back to Boot Camp in almost 2 weeks. Last week the studio was closed for renovations and the week prior life got in the way.

Two weeks away from an intense class like Boot Camp is a very long time and swinging back into the saddle took much internal pep talking.

It was only difficult to come back because I knew how hard the first day back would be and how sore my muscles were going to be tomorrow morning.

No matter how much time I take off though I'll always go back beucase I love it so much.

Remind me I said that tomorrow morning as I'm hobbling around...