Monday, August 27, 2012
Until a couple months ago, I did most of my running on the treadmill. I the treadmill! It tells me how fast I'm going, how long I've been running, and if I'm working too hard. the treadmill!
But this little nagging thought in the back of my head told me I needed to move it outdoors for oh-so-many reasons:
1) All races are outside. Why not train for a race in the same outside environment?
2) It's good to be outside when the weather allows. Up north where I live, the weather is TOO COLD so many months of the year. But summertime? GO OUTSIDE!
Hm, I can't remember any more reasons than that. But these two are compelling enough.
So I've been running outside. It's been great! I know I'm slower outside, maybe partly because of the heat, partly because of hills, partly because I worry about my knees. Who knows. I kind of like just running for fun and exercise and not paying any attention to all those numbers. NOT trying to hit any new speed goals. JUST RUNNING!
But, like I said, SLOWLY.
So tonight I got on the treadmill again. Hm. I cranked up the pace to where I was a month ago when I was on the treadmill more. It was tough! I felt like I was booking it! It made me really realize that my outdoor running was lollygagging. I need that treadmill running to build up my stamina and speed.
My new plan is to run on the treadmill twice a week and then do a longer run outside once a week. I'll let you know how it goes!
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
A week into this "Low-Sugar Thing," I'm doing a good job of keeping those carbs in check. What have I changed?
* NO MORE POP! I haven't missed it, except for one day at work. The thought popped in my head to go grab a Pepsi. Oh yeah, I don't drink that anymore. So I had a tea instead.
* Fewer/smaller treats. I know I said I was eating only half of my lunchtime cookie. Somehow I've forgotten about that the last few days. Hm. I'll try to remember!
* Less baking = less eating. A baking mood came over me this summer. I found basically the world's best brownie recipe, and I kept making them over and over and over again. And then I just had to try a lime curd tart recipe I saw on TV. It was delish, and much to my regret 603 calories per serving, which I found out after enjoying a piece. Lesson learned. Bake less, and if you do bake, figure out calories BEFORE eating it (and adjust your serving size accordingly!).
* Less sugar in my coffee. This is a big one. I really don't care for coffee, but it's pretty good with cream and sugar. I'm cutting back.
I'm happy with my first steps toward reducing sugar in my life, and I'll be looking for my next steps.
Saturday, August 18, 2012
I've been thinking a lot lately about perception, namely my own perception of my own fatness. When I was 30 pounds heavier, I viewed myself as very fat. When I lost 10 pounds, I instantly felt pretty good, maybe even thinnish because by comparison, I was. 20 pounds down, even more thinnish. 30 pounds down, nearly goal territory!
That was all fine and good. 30 pounds down and people were complimenting me often, I needed new clothes, and I felt great. I was exercising routinely and felt more fit than ever before. I fully intended to lose another 10-20 pounds, but in general I felt very good about my weight and size.
A year goes by. I gain and lose the same 5 pounds a few times over. It's been harder than I expected to lose more. My dedication waned. I still run, but my eating is not always the best. And I'm back to feeling fat, and this is kind of odd. I am the same size -- the smaller size, 30 pounds down. I just *feel* different. Blubbery.
I'm roughly the same weight and precisely the same size, but I *feel* fatter. It's all a mental thing. I no longer have that great "I just achieved something awesome" feeling. I have that "I need to achieve more" feeling.
A friend of mine tells me that I have a distorted body image. I think she's right. Is that something a person can change? I'm in no danger of becoming anorexic, but I understand that mentality: looking in the mirror and seeing only the fat that MUST GO. Maybe I won't feel that way anymore when I have less of it. Fat, that is.
For now, I'll just keep doing my best and try to remember that I have come a long way. I'm *not* still that overweight woman in the baggy clothes. I am... "thinnish."
Thursday, August 16, 2012
After my bold statement (I Will Run... No Matter What), I am taking a break from running. Why, you ask? Let me tell you.
Last week I was getting some random stabbing pains in my foot, right in the ball of my foot by the big toe. My knees have also been aching since I recently amped up my running. I was becoming concerned about that, but, as easily as the old me took the first excuse available and QUIT, the new me sees those excuses as something to overcome.
So I asked my neighbor, a marathon runner, about my knee issues. She laughed and said that yeah, she hurt too, and you just have to push past it. Great, thought I! I can keep on running. Once I get going, the knee pain fades, and I'm fine. Hurrah! They just ache starting up and during non-running times, like walking up and down stairs.
But then, hm, I read more about knee issues here on Spark. And it seems a lot of folks disagree with this "push past the pain" mentality. I googled and read more. I've come to the conclusion that pushing past the pain is probably fine when you're dealing with sore muscles. They're sore because you're pushing them to their limit, but if you can persevere, you'll reach your goal and your muscles will recover, and life will be grand.
If, however, you're dealing with something beyond muscle pain, pushing past the pain is probably not a good idea.
So, back to my Toe Story. Last week, just randomly while walking along in no pain whatsoever, I'd get this shooting pain in the ball of my foot and up through my toe. Random. Annoying. Perplexing. It started coming more frequently. I started massaging it, trying to pinpoint the pain. I googled. I read. I pondered pushing past the pain. I ran a few more times with the pain, and again, the pain would fade once I got going.
Yesterday the pain was more constant, perhaps because of all my massaging. I iced it on and off all day. I ran my foot over a tennis ball on and off all day. It felt somewhat better today. I had fewer stabbing pains. Then I went and got a 15-minute foot massage. I told the masseuse about my foot problems. The massage was great and at times painful. She found pain I didn't know I had -- in my arch, deep inside the ball of my foot. There was a spot in the ball that was particularly nubby and painful. She thought it was an enflamed tendon. Now, I feel 10 times better.
Oh, I hope it's that quickly resolved! I'm not going to run any more this week. That's skipping TWO RUNS ("I will run no matter what!"). Guess what -- resting (when needed) is every bit as important as dedication.
I will take care of me. No matter what.
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