Food by the Mile…

Food by the Mile…

When I got home from our vacation in Florida, after all the laundry was done….I opened the door to the spare room and hit the treadmill.  I did my Sunday 2 mile run at 5.5 on the treadmill — which was faster than my previous runs.  It just proved to me that habits have a time and a place.  The trick is….this is true for good habits, …hmmm, and bad ones too ;>)     Tricky!

My new running habits appear to be locked in.  I’m enjoying running.  The JoY is there, and that makes all the difference.  It makes the hard times, worth it.  And believe me…that is an important hurdle to have crossed.  I think, I thiiink this is what it means to enjoy exercise.  LOL.  I’m hesitant to tag those words to myself, because…it feels soooo foreign.  So NOT-Diane.  But….as the song goes…”these times, they are a changing.”

On the eating side, I’ve reverted to beating myself up.  It’s no good.  That kind of self-defeating behavior doesn;t et me any where.  I had a really great talk with my friend and mentor, Marathon Brian about it.  He shared with me some of his own experiences in his early days of running and triathlon training.  That’s how Marathon Brian started…he was Triathlon Brian, LOL.   Just looking at him, you can see that Brian has lost alot of weight during the process of his running and tri- training.  A while back, he sent me a before/after pic of him pre and post Marathon.  I was floored!  In my memory, my mind’s eye, he didn’t seem that heavy.  To look at him now, he’s a lean, strong runner.  The kind that looks like he could go on and on forever!  LOL, that’s probably because he DOES!

The impactful part of what Marathon Brian told me was that in the time between his 1st triathlon and his 2nd triathlon — he regained the 2o pounds he had worked off.  It’s kind of easy to stop running as much…..and continue eating as much.  THAT’S the TRICKY Part of being in Off Season.   He went onto say that once he began the Marathon training, he was eating an entire apple pie every week, and was losing weight hand over fist.  Marathon Training is Sooo Intense, that Eating to Sustain Yourself Becomes a Job.  HA!  HIRE ME!  HIRE ME!!

In all seriousness, he told me to chill out.  Not to be so hard on myself, but to try to get my eating habits to what they need to be.  Eating alot is not the Job.  Eating the Right things is the Job.  Eating for Fuel is the Real Ticket.  But this is hard, when all the wrong things are around every corner, just calling to ya.  Marathon Brian has this problem too.  That made me feel better.  It helped me stop those stupid thoughts…oh you know the ones….”What’s wrong with YOU Diane?”  The thoughts that make me feel like I am broken.  Like I’m Not Normal.  This is just not the case.  It’s Hard.  For Everybody.  Even those people who make it look easy…like the Marathon Brian’s of the World.  We all walk the same path.  It’s not easy for anyone.  So stop thinking it is.  That’s an excuse you tell yourself, so you can cheat and not feel as guilty!

He told me this great story.   His wife went to one of those bulk warehouse stores, like Costco or BJs, and brought home this enormous box of donuts.  He knew they were going to be trouble as soon as they entered the house.  Managing to avoid them for a while, his wife and three kids were eating them.  One night, he broke down and ate one.   Bells and whistles went off in his head.  They were GOOD.  TOO GOOD.  He wanted to eat them all, OR throw them away.  Both bad options for two very different reasons.  He didn’t want to eat them…because he figured out that the caloric value of 8 of these donuts was the same as 5 miles of running.  5 miles!!  Holy Crap!    However he also didn’t want to throw them away, because his family was enjoying them, and I know how that goes.  It’s HARD to lock down the food on your family and house mates…just because YOU need some self-control.  It’s a HARD balance.

What Marathon Brian did…was creative, and hysterical.  He said, every night…he would take 8 donuts, and throw them away.  His family assumed he was eating them…..and at the same time, they were disappearing….along with the temptation to eat them.   He said as he did it, it made him feel like he just ran the equivalent of 5 miles!  HA!  HA!  Well?  Come on.  I think he did!  He avoided un-doing 5 miles of running… it’s kinda the same!

I thought that was genius.  Pure Genius!!

I need to start having a mature, realistic view of food and how it can either contribute or detract from my Marathon Plan.   My food choices are either going to help my progress, or hinder it.  And I have to start REALLY feeling the full impact of that truth.  Brian’s idea of looking at these junk food choices in terms of “calories equalling miles” is kinda awesome.  If I can convert food into how many miles it would take to run in order to eat it….that might help me feel the real weight (no pun intended) of my choices.  I’m going to try this for a little while.  Food is Fuel.  I need to fuel my engine with good choices.

Beyond that, the real truth is……running the marathon at a lighter weight…will feel like a gift to myself on Jan 13, 2013.

Give yourself that Gift Diane.  Start now.

Yes ma’am!

Ciao for now…….Diane

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