I sit here on Sunday by myself in my room under the covers and I am looking forward to my trip to the gym in an hour or so. Here in MA it’s -3 degrees and pretty much has hovered there for more than a week. That means that I haven’t run outside in just about the same amount of time. I’ve headed to the gym to run on the DM because the outside is just too dangerous to tackle. Once it hits 20 degrees I pack it in and head out to pay a visit to my metallic nemesis.
I am a little nervous about my extended DM use because let’s face it, keeping up with a leather belt is much different from running on the street where you have to power yourself or you don’t go. I worry that it will set me back in my ability to run distance but at this point in my fitness endeavor, if I can’t adjust my plan and switch gears then I probably should just hang em up. LOL ok, that’s a little extreme but seriously I am not sure why I worry about this stuff. Here’s the thing, it only matters to me at this moment because I signed up for a Half Marathon in March and having to run on the DM during long runs makes me feel like I’m behind in training. It only matters right now because I don’t have any other races on the books for the year yet. That is intentional but right now I feel pressure to train appropriately and the weather isn’t cooperating. It’s only January so in a few weeks I will hopefully get back out and get on track with real running.
This year as I’ve mentioned, my plan is to focus more on strength training, good eating and biking over running this year. It’s a mental switch from the do it all, no days off attitude that I usually wear. One that is proving to me to be not quite as hard as I imagined but definitely an adjustment. I’ve added different workouts and more of them. I’m making attempts to try things like overnight oats, eating fewer snacks, drinking more water, eating less portions and focus to all the right things to keep me healthy. One day at a time and this year I’m slowing down and enjoying the things like running on the DM. It’s going to be a great year. I will set my hard goals and head out to achieve them. I’m looking forward to a year of strength training and what I can do. It’s going to be exciting!
Ok, WTF!!! I have decided that I have a caloric problem. Here I am trying to dump 10 lbs and tonight I realized what the hell part of my problem is I cannot stand to leave calories on the table. Seriously! I have done really well eating so good and tonight as I stuffed the 4th or 5th peppermint Hershey’s kiss in my face I realized that there was a calorie countdown going on in my head. I was actually counting remaining calories to 0 and just how much I could consume before ending upside down for the day. I literally was just going to keep eating and in fact I was thinking about what else I could eat until I got there. OMG that is a huge problem! I guess now that I am aware of it, I can fight off the urge but just WOW! I mean i knew I did that but I never really thought deeply about it until now. If I want to get rid of the 10 lbs I need to stop eating and leave whatever calories are unconsumed out there for the universe to absorb and return to me tomorrow. I think I’m addicted to eating. I mean who does that? Maybe everyone but it seems like I should hear about it on the news tomorrow and every day going forward or something. Well, tomorrow is a new day and I’ll try harder to just zip it and not inhale everything I can get my hot hands on. I must be strong! Stay tuned!
Today is the first day of 2018 and I started it off on a great note… I rode my stationary bike, aka the Brennaton, for an HOUR! I usually ride for as long as I run on an average day which is generally 30 minutes. Today I was watching a movie I haven’t seen for a while with no plans for the day and decided to keep going. I thought to myself, “Why the hell not?”.
Yesterday I did 5 miles of speed intervals (.75 mile running easy and .25 mile sprinting). I got to 3 miles and didn’t stop. 4 miles and said one more and when I hit 5 I was happy. Perhaps this is the year of pushing harder and giving more effort. Maybe I’ll actually lose the 10 lbs that I want to shed. Maybe I’ll tighten up my core just a little more like I want. I know everyone starts off good but I’m already in a good place, I’m just taking it to the next level and hopefully I can pull it off continuously. I’m more committed to strength training than running races. I had a lot of races last year and they are good for my soul and for cultivating a good time with my B’s but at the end of the day, this year is just another year but one with another focus. I have one race on the books for this year and will do one other in July because I just love that whole weekend at the Falmouth Road Race but outside of those two, I am not sure I’m down for running many. This year is about strengthening my body for next year. It’s about finding a level of fitness that I have yet to tap. I’m excited to see what this year brings on and what I can get out of it. So far, so good!
I have already set my 2018 fitness schedule through March. I have a half marathon on the books for March so my plan goes to there. I have set a weight goal that I would like to hit either by my half or by my birthday in May. Seventeen pounds that I want to shed is a little harder now that I’m older and doing some weight training to tone. I seem to hover around 165 these days which in my pants feels great but my eyes are still from the old school that start the name calling when I look in the mirror and still see cellulite on my legs and ass that make me wonder if I’ll ever get rid of that. Better happy and healthy and hovering at a healthy heavier weight than to be deeply depressed and either 200 lbs or 150 heading to very bad places. That was my swing not long ago. I’ve pretty much made peace with my current weight but I fight old demons that lurk in the mirror every day.
I have a meal plan of sorts in my head for this year one month at a time. ( THIS IS NOT ME BTW but I’d like it to be LOL!)
When I say meal plan I mean less sweets, more protein and less snacking. I want to up my effort in the weight training arena to really put in a full body effort with more focus on toning to try to cut just a little more body fat. My husband keeps saying I’m tight but when you’re feeling my ribs, OF COURSE, I’m tight. Not much fat there at all. LOL. I don’t really argue with him because it makes me feel good that that is the picture he sees of me and not the one I see in the mirror. I am going to try overnight oats this coming year to see if I can stomach them. They look awesome but something about oats that sat overnight kind of boges me out.
In terms of running, I don’t think this year will be as full as last year. I believe I’ll fall somewhere between 3-4 races not the 7 I did this year. One for me, one with my friend and one with my Bad Ass B’s for sure. Maybe one other but I would like to focus on strength training this year more than running to see what I have in me and how “tight” I can actually make this old body. I want to be amazing at 50 which is my 2019 birthday number. One reason I want to take it easy on the running THIS year is because I want to run a full marathon next year for my 50th. That goal scares the shit out of me because it’s bigger than I’ve ever attempted. It’s overwhelmingly ginormous and intimidating but it’s on my mind. I think even if I DNF (WHICH I HAVE NEVER EVER DONE BTW) I will have attempted what in my mind is the coo de ta of races. Can I do it? I do believe I can and I want to push myself to see if I can. So this year I’ll focus on strength to prepare for the BIG ONE next year. Get ready B’s because I’m going to need you there when I make that attempt. I’ll need my girls to help me get there and to be at the finish line with hopefully one or all of my kids cheering me to the finish. It will be a year of preparation and focus one month at a time. Watch out 2019 because this girl is coming for you with a vengeance. This girl is going to be ready when you arrive!
Here’s to the next 367 days until 2019 gets here!
As I run today on the ice slick road my mind is meandering. I’m first and foremost thinking about not falling on my ass on this ice, I should probably have rode my stationary bike or maybe have gone to the gym. I haven’t run on the road in a week and I’m missing it. The salt truck had just gone by my house so I knew it was probably icy. I went anyway figuring I’d run in the path of the salt which is what I did where I could. So along on my cold icy journey I went. My mind wanders as it always does. I think about the wrestling tournament I will attend for three days this week. I think about all the things I need to do since it’s Christmas Eve. I think about the food I’ll prepare and the things that need to get done. It’ll all get done. It always does.
As I run I think about my daughter and how I don’t know what to do to help her. She’s in the “I’ve gained weight, It hurts to workout, I am sad about my weight gain” funk. Part of her problem is that she refuses to work through pain. Part of her problem is that she keeps eating shit and wondering why she’s putting on weight. She isn’t in a good place. Last Christmas she was still here and I ran out and bought larger clothes for her because I felt that she was on the edge of something bad. Now I look back and that is not what I need to do. I’ve offered to workout with her whenever she has time but we always end up at the same conversation. “Mom, I have to work and study and I’m too tired to workout”. I want to help her I just haven’t figured out how yet.
As I run I think about how happy I am that my son John is home for 4 weeks. I am always so happy when we are all together.
As I run I think about the shower I can’t wait to take. I took one on Friday night but now its Sunday and I’m feeling a little oogie.
As I run I think about what I’ll wear to our family gathering with the people who we don’t see very often. I think about all the bullshit “we have to get together more often” comments that are such crap. I resent them for reasons that the good Lord above would admonish me for. What can I say, I’m not perfect. What will I wear to the gathering that I’d rather not be at for which I feel bullied into going to because “we have to make time for family…. we shouldn’t let so much time go by…. blah blah. I live with a family who doesn’t even try so I should appreciate when we get invitations. I don’t know what my issue is because I choose not to participate in this side of the family…or any for that matter. I am resentful but don’t try. This is mostly by my choice that we are loners and my husband is like most. If wifey poo doesn’t make plans we don’t do them. Maybe that will be my personal new years resolution. Yeah, we’ll see. Anyway, we go because my husbands Grandmother has had a rough year and if it’s her last Christmas or last good one, I would feel badly if we didn’t make this effort.
As I run I think about the coffee I want to have when I get back. My reward for putting up the miles and getting it done. Just 3 but three is more than zero and a 9:54 avg pace on ice is better than no pace sitting on my ass at home.
As I run I think about my other son James and how awesome I think he is. My gentle giant that makes my heart smile who has the biggest heart and warmest bear hug. He’s my little buddy and I think about how I am dreading if he leaves for college somewhere far away. He is the last but he’s the one I’ll be the saddest to see spread his wings. I feel lonely already. What do you do when your three everythings leave for their own lives? Do I run more? It seems to be what I do when I’m in distress. Run more and more and more. It’s how I work life out.
So as I run I thnk about my life and I give thanks to God for it all, good and bad and sad and all the inbetween. I am a lucky lady.
At any race I have ever run, I worry that I might not finish. Now I know that I can. I have in fact run the distance that I am racing may times over. I am trained for the distance, I know how to fuel for the distance and yet that nagging thought runs through my head making me worry. Why?
My youngest son earned his Eagle Scout rank last night. The last step is a final Board of Review where you sit in a room in front of 3 officials high up in the Boy Scout ranks, a witness and one other person who takes pictures if they can. They ask the candidate questions that can be anything from their years in scouting from knots, things about the laws that they recite each week to just about anything. It’s the last step and it’s meant to make them nervous. So many hours of earning badges and planning a final project and paperwork that pave the way to this moment. They walk in that room a Boy Scout and walk out not just an Eagle, but a new person, a man, a very proud person. They are led to believe all along that this is not a given thing. They are taught that this is a test that must be passed. They must be in full uniform, have their Scout book that has every I and T dotted and crossed along with their brag book. Everything must be in its place and be perfect. THEY must be perfect, they want to be perfect:
What they don’t know is that this interview, this final meeting is actually just a formality. It’s meant as a lesson to them in life. It’s intended to be a right of passage that they must pass through. As unnecessary as this formality is, it is necessary. It must take place. There is no real question here and there is no reason to wonder or worry, but we do anyway. My son was nervous as was his brother when it came time for this last step but there was no real need to be because they had done all the work to get there and that was the real test.
We worry and doubt gets in our heads all throughout life but the moral of the story is that if you do the hard work all along the way, the moment of truth is just a moment in time at the top of the proverbial mountain.
So these days I look forward to runs because I’m not in training. I can run whatever I want and mostly I choose to run 3 miles because it’s fast, easy and enough to make me feel like I did something. Today it was 25 degrees so I layered up probably just shy of too many layers but it was ok. I headed out knowing they were running the Frosty Half Marathon which goes right past the end of my neighborhood on two sides. I wasn’t sure I’d see the beginning or any runners at all since it was past 8 o’clock. When I got to the end of my street one of the race volunteers laughed and told me to join the race and run in the other direction. I giggled and told her I would be first….yeah for about 5 minutes until they caught up to me! So down the road I go and there are cop cars with their lights on which tells me they haven’t started yet. BONUS! I’ll see the beginning of the race and maybe i’ll stop to cheer. When I see the first runner I decide I’m not stopping to cheer…. I”m running right through the crowd of runners cheering and hollering and giving high 5’s to everyone and that is exactly what I did! It was so much fun! Everyone smiled and gave me a high 5 back and I like to think I helped start their race off on the right foot. The penalty for screaming and running and high fiving is that I lost my breath control for most of the rest of the way home, but it was worth it! I wish I had my Frosty Half hat on today because then it would have at least told them that I was a fellow Frosty alum but no one cares anyway so it’s all good fun. I can’t help myself when it comes to being excited and animated. I’m not very grown up for my age but I wouldn’t change a thing. My son tells me that I need to tone it down at his wrestling matches too. I’m not real good at being quiet but why should I be? I’m animated and loud and sarcastic and funny and that’s what I like best about me. I’ve passed the time where I care what people think of me. I’m past trying to make other people happy all the time. I’ve learned to love life, people and the moments in life, like today, that become something you hold on to. If you get the chance, run through a pack of runners in a race cheering. It’s a refreshing and somewhat exhilarating experience that shakes out the ordinary in a day.