Weight Loss, Running Paces, Invisalign Q&A (Non-Video)

Hey there, happy Friday! Recently I’ve been getting a handful of the same questions, so I thought today I would just do a quick Q&A style post in case other people are wondering the same things!

Weight Loss 

1. What did you do to lose weight? 

I mentioned in my weight loss post that I didn’t go on a diet, I didn’t restrict any foods, I didn’t count calories, etc. so I guess it’s natural that I got a couple of questions about what I DID do.

First off, I think getting back to running three days a week probably helped. I wasn’t doing much cardio while I was sidelined from running so that’s one thing. However, if you’ve ever heard the phrase “you can’t outrun a bad diet” I’m here to tell you that’s true. Even when I was running a lot and training hard I wasn’t really losing weight so much as maintaining, so I do think changing some of my eating patterns helped a lot.

Since I started working from home I’ve been able to cook and eat more of my meals at home which has been nice. I’m not a big fan of microwaved foods, so when I was going to an office I was eating out 99% of the time.

I now make it a point to have a fruit or a vegetable with every meal.

Other than that I’m just trying to eat when I’m hungry and stop when I’m full.

My friend Sam is a registered dietitian and she has a podcast all about nutrition for the working woman. One thing she said in her podcast that really stuck with me is “don’t do something if you don’t think you can do it for the rest of your life” otherwise it will lead to yo-yo dieting. That has really been my primary guiding principle over the last month.

Can I eat a fruit or a vegetable with every meal for the rest of my life? YES. Can I choose a salad every time I go out to a restaurant? NO.

That means I am happily creating the habit of eating more fruits and vegetables, but I definitely am not trying to order a salad as my main dish every time I eat out. If I did try and make that a habit I would quickly break it and then I would feel badly when really it was an unrealistic expectation to put on myself in the first place.

2. What do I eat in a day? 

I have the same two breakfast options that I rotate between:

  • Oatmeal topped with a small banana, flax seeds and a teaspoon of brown sugar
  • 2 sunny side up eggs with 2 slices of toast and fruit

These have always been my favorite breakfast options so it’s not hard to rotate between these two every day.

I usually eat lunch at home three days a week and my favorite thing to make right now is a sweet potato topped with either ground turkey or shredded chicken and baked beans (and sometimes broccoli too). Mmm my mouth is salivating just thinking about it right now!

Then on the days that Adam works from home (usually 2 days a week) we go out. I try to choose fairly healthy options when we go out but it’s not super important to me to do so. Rather I focus on just stopping when I feel full.

Dinner is usually a vegetable, a protein and a carb. Usually some kind of chicken dish with a vegetable on the side. I’ve been really into making thai peanut chicken lately. I make the peanut sauce from scratch and it’s so good!

Running 

1. How many days a week are you running?

I am currently running 3 days a week and lifting 2-3 days a week.

My training includes an easy, short run on Mondays (usually 1.5 miles), a quality running workout on Wednesday and a “long” run on Friday.

I’ve been working with a coach for almost two weeks now. Last week my quality run was a continuous fartlek with five 30 second pickups and this week I did a tempo run.

My “long run” this week is going to be 2.5 miles and the goal will be to do it without using walking intervals. Since I started running again in February I’ve done 2.5 miles a couple of times but that was using run/walk intervals, so now I’m trying to increase my distance without using the walking breaks.

2. Are you not going to do run/walk anymore? 

Before surgery I pretty much always used run/walk intervals. I started using them during Couch to 5K back in 2013 and I never stopped. That being said, I was still able to run a couple of miles without using any walking breaks, so being able to run 2 miles now without walking breaks isn’t super unusual for me.

However, when I started planning out my return to running it did cross my mind that I could probably cut out walking intervals all together if I wanted to this time.

I think that’s what I’m going to try and do. I’d love to say I ran a half marathon without using walking intervals. I don’t think there is anything wrong or bad with run/walk. That strategy helped me earn all of my current PRs.

I just think of cutting out the walking intervals as a new and different challenge. I may go back to it someday, actually when I’m 100 years old and still running marathons I am sure I’ll be taking some walking breaks :).

3. What paces are you currently running? 

I’ve never been one to share paces on my blog a lot because I don’t like reading about them. Comparing my paces to someone else has never really helped me. That’s why I usually only share my running stats in race recaps.

But I totally get the curiosity, especially now that I’m coming back from surgery and haven’t run in so long.

When I did a one mile time trial I ran 13:03 pace so that’s the benchmark for all of my other paces. That was a couple of weeks ago though and I can already tell my fitness has improved, and I’m looking forward to doing my next time trial.

Fastest mile – 13:03
Tempo pace – 14:00-ish (I ran my tempo on Wed. @ 13:57)
Easy – go by feel and then go slower than that

4. When are you going to run a 5K? 

I had signed up for a 5K last month but I didn’t feel ready for it. I now definitely feel like I can run a 5K. My coach and I have discussed running a 5K in May. I’ll keep you updated on that!

Invisalign 

1. What was the consultation/process like for getting setup for Invisalign? 

I was really surprised at how many people were interested in hearing about Invisalign. I guess it is becoming more and more popular!

The consultation lasted about 90 minutes. First the tech took pictures inside my mouth from a variety of different angles just using a DSLR camera. Then I had full mouth x-rays done. At that point the orthodontist came in, reviewed my pictures and x-rays, examined my teeth and let me know I was a candidate for Invisalign.

She then showed me before and after pictures of other patients who had similar issues as mine so I could visualize what my outcome might be. She told me how long she estimated my treatment to be (2.5 years) and then she left me to discuss cost with the tech.

Finally once I agreed to the cost I was taken to have scans completed of my mouth. They basically run a camera over each one of your teeth to send to the lab so that your Invisalign trays (the braces) come back molded specifically for you.

After that I signed the contract, left a deposit and was sent on my way. My trays will come in roughly 5 weeks and at that time I’ll begin treatment.

2. How much does Invisalign cost? 

It really depends on each individual case. From the research I’ve done it costs between $2700 – $8000 with $5000 being the average.

In my particular case it cost $6700 all-in. That includes all of my ortho appointments during treatment, my scans, my trays, follow up appointments after treatment is over and the first retainer after treatment is over. My treatment plan is expected to last 2.5 years.

Insurance does cover part of the cost. My insurance is paying $1,500 of the cost but my ortho said that’s actually one of the highest she’s seen. She said most insurance plans only pay $500 towards Invisalign.

I think most ortho’s will probably offer a payment plan through the practice or through a third party. If you pay the whole fee up front you can usually negotiate a 5-10% reduction in cost from what I’ve read.

Also keep in mind that part of the cost is for the trays and part of the cost is for the ortho’s services. That means different ortho’s may charge you different prices so you can shop around multiple quotes if you want. You can also ask if the ortho offers discounts or special offers that you might be able to take advantage of.

I hope this post has been helpful to at least one curious person. If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment, DM me on instagram or email me. I’m a fairly open book about all the topics I blog and vlog about!

If you have any other questions just LMK!
Have a great weekend!

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8 Comments

  1. April 13, 2018 / 9:10 am

    I have an Invisalign quuestion. How often do you wear the invisalign? Why are you doing that rather than a retainer or something similar? Is it cheaper than doing a retainer or braces? It seems like every kid at school these days has braces or a retainer or something like that.

    • Kristina
      Author
      April 13, 2018 / 9:36 am

      You have to wear Invisalign at a minimum of 22 hours per day. You’re only supposed to take them out when you eat and when you brush your teeth.

      Invisalign are a type of brace, so I’ll have to wear a retainer after, just like if I got regular metal braces.

      Invisalign is more expensive than metal braces in most cases, but at 31 years old I don’t want a mouth full of metal. Not only do I not want to look in the mirror and see a mouth full of metal, but I also don’t want to go into professional meetings with metal braces on. The beauty of Invisalign is that they are totally clear so that no one sees them unless they look really closely.

      From what I gather Invisalign works more slowly than regular braces. My ortho said if I did a combination of metal braces and Invisalign I could be done with treatment in 1.5-2 years but on Invisalign I probably won’t be done with treatment for 2.5 years. I’d rather do the extra time and not wear metal braces though.

      I never had braces as a kid but from what I understand it’s best to get them when you’re younger to prevent overcrowding issues, which is what I have. My ortho said I have a small mouth and larger than average teeth which has led to a lot of overcrowding. If you have ortho work done as a kid your body is still growing, so they can actually expand your mouth to prevent overcrowding, but once you’re an adult and your body is done growing there isn’t anything they can do but give you braces/Invisalign with a fairly long treatment plan.

      I wish I had just gotten braces as a kid!

      • April 16, 2018 / 5:40 pm

        Dang, thanks for your thorough response. I had never heard of invisalign but now I feel like I know more about it. CAN you wear them 24 hours a day? Why would one take them out? Oh, I guess to brush your teeth, but anything else?

        • Kristina
          Author
          April 16, 2018 / 7:43 pm

          To brush your teeth and to eat. You can’t eat with them on. But the good part is that because you can take them out unlike regular braces you can eat whatever you want. You don’t have to cut anything out!

  2. April 13, 2018 / 8:03 pm

    I am just finishing up a year with Invisalign and hopefully will be all done by the end of the summer. I have a learned a few tips I’ll pass along. Stock up on these tabs. https://www.amazon.com/Retainer-Brite-Tablets-Months-Supply/dp/B005GRGARE/ref=sr_1_4_s_it?s=beauty&ie=UTF8&qid=1523663286&sr=1-4&keywords=retainer+brite+cleaning+tablets I soak my trays in them anytime I am home and eating and think they freshen them and have not had any staining issues. Buy tons of floss in multi packs. You’ll use a ton! If I am traveling and can’t brush I will drink a bunch of water and swish a lot and if possible floss and it works ok as a substitute to brushing.

    Not sure if you have to get the brackets on your teeth. I had to get them on almost every tooth as they help move the teeth in the tray. I had no idea I was getting them and do find them quite noticeable when I smile. I’d caution anyone looking at getting Invisalign to ask. Good advice to shop around and ask how many trays you’ll get at one time. Some orthodontists only give a month or so but mine gave me the whole year which was quite convenient and I didn’t have to worry about getting back in time to pick more up.

    I can’t be bothered to brush and floss and take the trays in and out so find I have bulked up the quantity of my meals instead of snacking. Play around with what works and what doesn’t. A friend recommended to me to start your new tray at night. It will allow your mouth to get used to it and adjust instead of during the day. Giving the new tray 8+ hours uninterrupted seems to have worked for me as well. I had to wear elastics on the trays at nighttime as well, do you have to wear them as well?

    Wearing them works. I have worn them for probably 21 hours a day as a minimum everyday and seen great changes with my teeth. Feel free to ask me any questions or tips! Good luck with your treatment 🙂

    • Kristina
      Author
      April 14, 2018 / 10:11 am

      Hey Kate, THANK YOU so much for all of these tips! I just added those tabs to my cart on Amazon and will definitely get them when my trays come in.

      I think I’m going to get 3 months of trays at a time and then I’ll have to go in for a checkup to get the next set. I honestly don’t mind because my ortho’s office is beautiful haha. That sounds so weird but it’s honestly the nicest building I’ve ever been in!

      I am going to have a few brackets; the team showed me some pics of people with the brackets on and they were more moticeable than not having them, but MUCH less noticeable than the examples of people with metal braces on haha. The brackets I can deal with!

      I didn’t even think about the snacking aspect but I can definitely see myself in the same boat as you, not wanting to be bothered with brushing, flossing etc so many times a day.

      I love the tip about starting at night, that makes so much sense. Thank you, I’m definitely going to do that!

      Yes, I will have to wear elastics at night. I hope they aren’t too difficult to get on? I imagine after a while you become a pro at it!

      I’m sure I’ll have a ton of questions as time goes on. I don’t get my trays until next month so right now is more of a waiting game. I’m so glad to hear that you had a good experience with it. I can’t wait to get started!

      • April 14, 2018 / 4:18 pm

        No problem, happy to help. I remembered a few more. I buy dish soap (Mrs Meyers) and use it to clean the trays as it is non abrasive and seems to work well. I just pout a bit on the tray and use a regular toothbrush. I remember being so frustrated with the elastics at the beginning and feeling like I would never be able to do it. My tip is it easier if you bend the hook on the top tray a bit and then hook the elastic over it and pull down to the bottom front. Good lighting helps when you are learning so when they show you ask to go to a restroom with the tech perhaps. I was trying in the dental chair with poor light and really struggled. Now it is no big deal and I can pop them in and out.

        Also to remove them I did buy a cheap tool called an Ortho Key https://www.theorthokey.com to remove the trays at the beginning. There have only been a few times when I really struggled to get them out. I only used it a few time when I really couldn’t get them out but it does work if yours are tight. For the top I just pull down from the inside of the back (inner side) and then the bottom I use my thumbs and push up under the outer front teeth.