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Training, Not Trying

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I'm done trying to lose weight. Not forever - just for now. Because chances are, if I quit trying so hard, it's just going to happen anyway. Instead of beating my head against a wall about monitoring every calorie consumed and wondering why the scale still isn't moving, I'm embracing the training mentality that I'm going to need to carry me through the next 8 months of running, swimming, cross-training and running some more to get me in shape to complete 26.2 miles on October 7th. And sometimes what you need to do to train that hard, is EAT.

So I have officially sworn off the food tracker. Which is actually both liberating and terrifying. Bottom line is that I know - I KNOW - what a 1500 calorie day looks like. I know roughly the complete calorie breakdown of everything I eat on a regular basis. I've become pretty good at guessing about everything else. And they put info on the backs of food boxes for a reason. The mental calculation is enough - I'm not going to stress about the rest. Instead, what I'm going to have to do is listen to my body. Novel concept.

Over the next couple of months I will be increasing my weekly running mileage from 12 miles a week to 25 miles a week. By the time I run the marathon, I will have increased that number again to approximately 40 miles a week. If I don't lose weight from running that many miles, I seriously need to take stock of what else I might be doing that preventing it from coming off.

Training is all that matters right now. If I don't change a thing about what I'm doing, I have already proven that I will continue to maintain. But I have an inkling that the person who crosses that finish line on October 7th is not going to weigh as much as she does today.

It's time to put the knowledge I have to good use, trust my instincts and embrace the fun of training for this momentous occasion in my life. Chapter 1 in Hal Higdon's book "Marathon" says that the marathon lifestyle is a healthy lifestyle - good food, good sleep, low limits on booze and other bad-for-you things. So for the next 8 months, I am a marathoner. Plain and simple. And the pounds are just going to have to agree at some point.
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  • ANDEEC09


    2575 days ago
    Wow, I have the opposite problem. I have no problem with increasing my intensity but I have been way to lazy on my food tracking. Stupid munching! Way to go and keep on adding those steps!

    2578 days ago
    Well you do what you need to do.

    God bless & enjoy everyday!

    2579 days ago
    Wow, you will definately do it and the thought of 42+Km just makes me think what an achiever you are. The pounds will just drop off, they won't have a choice emoticon
    2579 days ago
    hey buddy! I totally hear you. From what I read from Jeff Galloway and John Bingham, both have stated in their books that marathon training is hard enough without adding the stress of trying to lose weight. For some (like me) it was downright impossible due to the carb intake and energy demands that are going to be placed on you as your training miles get longer.

    There is a difference between running to lose weight and training. When you are jogging, pace and distance really dont matter. When training, you are endeavoring to increase your endurance and performance, both of which are impossible at a calorie deficit.

    Marathons generally are not run to lose weight, it is the challenge and I promise you that you will be a better, stronger, more capable you when it is over. it is a lifechanging experience that will add depth to your journey that nothing else will.

    make it happen and dont worry about the tracking....
    2579 days ago

    Comment edited on: 2/24/2012 3:04:03 PM
    You can only create so much of a calorie deficit in a day and still be losing weight in a healthy sustainable way! So you HAVE to eat more. I was truly burning about 6000-8000 a week marathon training for the 2010 Chicago Marathon. You simply cannot get through those long runs without having a balanced diet and eating the right amount of food... so there are a lot of built in controls in place. you will do great.
    2579 days ago
    I'm looking forward to regular updates on your progress.
    2579 days ago
    I assume you're running Chicago - good luck! Let us know how training is going.
    2579 days ago
    I think you'll do great and i'm looking forward to seeing your journey with this marathon. I think it's a great idea you wanting to change things up a bit. Sometimes thats what our bodies need. Best of luck!
    2579 days ago
    I think that focusing on training and not tracking will probably give you the breakthrough you're looking for. Sometimes just slowing down and listening to our bodies is absolutely the best thing we can do - especially when you're training as hard as you will. Best of luck, although I know you don't need it!
    2579 days ago
  • -POOKIE-

    I think you will do awesome, because thats what you are!
    2579 days ago
    You continue to inspire! I will be in MA rooting for you all the way! You got this! Amazing blog, as always. emoticon emoticon
    2579 days ago
    I am proud of you. I know that you will definitely not be the same person when you cross that finish line. You are amazing. I'll be rooting you on every step of the way!
    2580 days ago
    emoticon emoticon
    I so agree...even though I am not marathoning, I am in a phase where I need to just trust my instincts & not feels good so far!
    emoticon emoticon
    2580 days ago
    I look forward to watching your progress. It sounds wonderfully "normal" to just be really active and not fret over your calorie intake. Awesome!
    2580 days ago
    Whether or not you lose any weight, I think your training will probably be better with you not stressing over calories. (Not that I am basing this on ANY marathon training experience whatsoever, because I have none.) Food is fuel, and you need fuel for long runs!!
    2580 days ago
    Best of luck to you. I know you'll reach every goal you set for yourself.
    2580 days ago
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