Wednesday, September 01, 2010
Just to be clear, I wasn’t feeling depressed when I wrote yesterday’s blog. I was already feeling better at that point but wanted to comment on how I had been feeling for awhile. With my mood swings, I never do know if a bad mood is going to linger or if the miserable emotions will be remiss for awhile.
I didn’t do a whole lot today…but…I enjoyed my time without beating myself and telling myself how lazy I am. It was a pretty ok day.
Kept bitchiness in check for the most part
Tried to be more positive
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
I've had a pretty rough last week. I feel like I've fallen off the health bandwagon, at least partially. I got all my cardio in last week but my eating was crap. I already took 2 days off cardio this week (not entirely my choice, but still) and I know I won't get cardio in for the remaining 5. And I've been really depressed.
You know how most people seem to undergo this great personality change as they lose weight? They become bright and sparkly and happy and glowy. Not me. I'm becoming a bigger bitch every single day. Not due to the weight loss, but because I don't know how to NOT be this embittered, resentful monster about all the crap situations of my life and the crap people that have remorselessly screwed me over.
Being this nasty, angry person all the time makes me feel even worse; after all the bs I've been through, now I have to be stuck with this miserable person all the time. But it just seems that the more I try to change--or at least keep myself in check--the worse it gets, until I reach the point where it's actually easier just to admit that I have no redeemable qualities, accept where I am, and wallow in my own self-hatred. And it's hard to focus on eating healthy or working out or losing weight when it's such a small part of the puzzle. Yeah, I'm losing weight, but I'm more despicable day by day.
Today went much better. I can't say why. I don't know why the depression and self-hatred came on so incredibly strong all of a sudden. I don't know how to keep them at bay. I don't know how to keep trying to change 27853 things I hate about myself every day.
Friday, August 27, 2010
Copying/pasting as required for my newest challenge...
I Pledge that during the BLC I will...
...be good to my body and fill it with healthy foods and enough water to drown a fish.
...treat myself and my teammates with kindness and RESPECT.
...weigh in every week, no matter if I lost, gained, or stayed the same.
...follow ALL of the rules of the contest, and ask my group leader if I have any questions.
...ask for help and support when I need it, and give others help and support when they need it.
...NOT give up on myself or my teammates, no matter what!
Friday, August 20, 2010
I’m currently visiting my grandma. I love her, and for the most part, she’s always been really sweet and warm. She lacks tact, however, and she never, never hesitates to tell you when she thinks you need to lose—or more rarely, gain—weight. Because I’ve struggled with my weight most of my life, this has usually been every visit. Since I started losing weight this time around, she’s changed gears and told me how good I look. In a completely backwards way that is beginning to really piss me off.
I know she’s old; I know she comes from a completely different generation. Maybe that generation was more direct. Even so, she's adapted to other changes over the years. Social niceties shouldn't be too difficult to learn. Seriously. WHY would you think it’s a compliment to tell someone, anyone, let alone your granddaughter, that they look “so much *better* now”? In what way is it nice to tell her she looks young now and she used to “look like an old lady before”? Why make all the nasty, hurtful analogies to what you think I looked like previously?
Here’s an idea. Instead of telling me I look better, tell me I look good. Tell me I look healthy or fitter. Leave out all the commentary on how disgusting you think I looked in the past. (Especially when you know that I’ve always struggled with my weight and that future weight gain is, sadly, a viable possibility.) These 'compliments' are completely backhanded, and I neither need them nor want them. They only make me feel horrible about myself.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
This is exceptionally long and incredibly detailed and is meant mostly to commemorate the event for myself. You're welcome to read on, but consider yourself forewarned!
Until last night, I seriously questioned whether I would even show up for the 5K because I really hurt my knee after my last run. I wanted to run this week so that I didn’t lose any endurance, and I wanted it to be outside, but life got in the way. I ended up running on the treadmill Tuesday night. To compensate for how much easier it is to run inside than out, I ran faster (5.3 mph instead of 5.0) and constantly changed the incline (instead of 0 grade). Even with ibuprofen, Wed and Thurs off from the gym, and alternating heat and ice, I was still limping until yesterday night and in a considerable amount of pain. I tried unsucessfully to think positively. The thought of not being able to meet the goal I've been working on accomplshing for 13 weeks (!!) got me so depressed that, at one point yesterday, I laid in bed crying. My knee felt a little better after working out last night, though, so I decided, stupid or not, “I don’t care how much it hurts or how stupid of an idea it is, I AM running this 5K.”
Not only did my gym hold the 5K but the race started and ended at the gym. This meant that 1) I had to drive the course to get to the gym so I knew the route (mostly flat) , and 2) it was really close—only 5.5 miles from my house. When was I going to get this kind of convenience in a race again?
I woke up today scared, excited, and nervous. Scared about my knee and nervous about what to expect. With temps in the 90s and high humidity earlier in the week, I'd really worried about the weather. It was overcast with a slight breeze and temperatures in the high 60s/low 70s. Perfect! It literally could not have been better. Actually, I asked multiple times this week for this *exact* weather.
In the half hour between when I arrived and when we started I peed 3 times. I learned from week 8 of C25K that nothing, in my experience, makes for a worse run than having to pee! I saw some very athletic-looking girls stretching in the locker room when I went to the bathroom, and they all kind of gave me funny looks. I was very self-conscious and feeling more than a little out-of-place, especially outside where I was one of the only people to bring a water bottle with me, let alone a towel. But I told myself “Look, *everyone else* probably won’t get sick if they don’t bring water. They probably don’t sweat as much as you. You practiced with both these things because they’re what *you* need. You’ll use them now because they’re still what you need.”
My warm-up was some good old-fashioned pacing around the parking lot to get over my nerves. Before I knew it, it was time to line up. The 5K was a fundraiser for the local SPCA; because they wanted to save on money to have more to donate to the shelter, it was very low-tech. There were no chips, timing devices, or clocks. We pinned on paper bibs with handwritten numbers, and the race director used a stopwatch to record our times. The official starting time was when the beginner runners set off. I didn’t want any extra time tacked on to my official number, but I’m slow. I started at the back.
me with pre-race jitters
When we took off, I started up my playlist right away and set into my own pace. There were no mile markers for me to gauge my pace. I have, however, kept a pretty steady pace on all my runs, so I listened to my body and made sure not to go too fast.
As I exited the parking lot onto the road, I just enjoyed the scenery and the experience of running on the road. I’d never run on ‘real’ roads before today. I live in a rural area, which means that drivers speed and that most roads have almost or entirely no shoulder. When I’ve run on pavement outside, it was either around my development or on an asphalt path surrounding the nearby cemetery. [Because of this, I’ve also never run a straight distance; it’s always been laps.] So today was my first experience on a road, for all intents and purposes. There were fire police stopping cars at intersections and instructing drivers to go around us the rest of the time. I didn’t have to worry about getting mowed over!
I passed a woman watching the race from the driveway with a little girl. She clapped for me as I went by, and that felt pretty awesome.
The first 1.25 miles went great. I paced myself really well and wasn’t very tired. Then I hit the gradual but very noticeable upgrade. My dad was standing right there to cheer me on, and boy, he couldn’t have been at a better spot. I really needed the encouragement at that point. After about 0.2 mi, the grade leveled out—for a couple yards. Then we had to run up an even steeper hill to get to the halfway mark. I remember looking at the stopwatch on my HRM at the halfway point thinking “Something’s not right. They must’ve measured the distance wrong.” because it was at least a minute less than it’s ever been for that distance.
None of the inclines were particularly steep, but any uphill grade is really challenging for me. After hitting that first climb, my heart rate went up to the high 170s/low 180s and never lowered for the rest of the race.
HRM results for the race
Needless to say, I got very tired. I usually want to quit around 1.5-2 miles in. My dad was standing there waiting for me when I came back down from the mid-point, though. I high-fived him as I ran past. One of the gym’s trainers was also passing me in the opposite direction (she promised that no one would finish last because she was going to) and she cheered me on at that point, too. The encouragement helped me go strong for at least a quarter mile.
That’s when I wanted to walk. Oh, did I ever want to walk. But my goal wasn’t to complete a 5K; it was to run a whole 5K. That quote by George Sheehan kept running through my mind: “It's very hard in the beginning to understand that the whole idea is not to beat the other runners. Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit.” Well, since I’d started running, I’d never had trouble understanding who the competition was against. That voice in my head was loud today, and I had to work hard to fight it. It said “Walk. No one’s around you. They’ll never know if you walk. You could lie and say you ran the whole thing.” But *I* would know. And I’d run this distance before. I knew I could do it. I slowed down for most of the remainder but I kept one foot off the ground at all times. I refused to let the voice win. I refused to walk.
Although the last mile was pretty difficult, I had good music on and I felt a lot better once I resolved that I *would* run the whole time. I was very out of breath. My heart rate was through the roof. But my legs felt great, my knees didn’t bother me too badly, and I didn’t get blisters. (I remembered to moleskin and bandaid the crap out of my feet and toes beforehand). I thought about how awesome I’d feel when I crossed that finish line—er, traffic cones. LOL.
I chugged along, and one of the other trainers that was handing out water and taking pics at the halfway point rode by me, hanging out the window to take a pic. I smiled big, cuz I knew I was gonna do it! As I turned into the road to the gym parking lot, I saw the earlier finishers and the people recording times. I couldn’t see my mom yet, but I knew she was there getting ready to take my finishing line pic. This, this last tenth of a mile, is when I HAULED ASS. I kicked it up from a jog and I full-out sprinted, running like I don’t think I ever have before. I saw my mom, I saw how close I was, and I felt this huge wave of pride wash over me. I ran through the cones and glanced at my HRM a few seconds later.
What? What?! The fastest I’ve ever done 3 miles (not even 3.1) in the past was 36:29, and that was on a flat, cushioned hs track. My HRM said 34:42!
The “official time” was 34:48. It actually took me less than that because I started in the back, but really, I don’t care. I settled for the realistic goal of running the whole 5K without any delusion of achieving my pie-in-the sky dream of finishing under 35 mins. Even with the extra 10 or so seconds tacked on, I hit my time goal as well!
I didn’t win an award. In fact, I was probably one of the last in my age bracket to finish. The important thing, though, is that I did finish, and that makes me a winner.
it doesn't look like it, but I'm actually sprinting here
“Champions do not become champions when they win the event, but in the hours, weeks, months and years they spend preparing for it. The victorious performance itself is merely the demonstration of their championship character.”
- T. Alan Armstrong
As for my knee: it took me 3 days to get rid of my limp and 35 mins to get it back. It was totally worth it, though.
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