Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Rub Some Dirt on It

Growing up with Marines as parents, I was taught to be tough! If I fell down (at it was clear that I wasn't actually hurt) my parents would say "You're ok, just rub some dirt on it!" Because they didn't make a big deal about it, I often times would hold the water works after I fell. This sort of mentality was something I carried throughout adulthood. Being tough is something I take pride in. I will often soldier on, ignore the discomfort, suck it get the picture.

Some things however should not be ignored.

Last week I set out for my long run. I was scheduled to complete 16 miles. Due to some planned and un-planned life/family events, I was unable to get a long run in since my 10 miler 4 weeks prior. "It's ok", I thought, "I'm tough, I'll be able to do it. Once I get this 16 miles in, I will feel great!"

After about mile 6 I was much more tired than I was expecting. Looking at my Garmin, I also noticed that my heart rate was a bit higher than normal. "Hmmmm, that's odd...oh well, suck it up! Marathons don't run themselves."

Mile 9 rolled around and I was unable to run. Physically my legs refused to move in a forward motion at anything faster than a 14 min/mi pace. With every step my knees screamed in agony (think hammer on both sides of your knee cap with a vice press on the front part of your knee cap).

I've experience knee pain before, but NEVER has it been so agonizing. And, it's not like distance is new to me, I've completed 4 half marathons in the past 16 months.

Mile 11 came and I couldn't move. Even walking was pure torture. "$h!t, I have to do 5 more miles today? If this were the race, I'd have to do 15 MORE miles?!" I was in such misery that I actually called my fiancé to pick me up because I couldn't even walk the 3 miles to my car.

I have never felt more defeated in my entire life.

That Saturday I made a decision. I decided to stop ignoring the pain. The reality is that I have never run pain free. I've tried the traditional cures: ice, new shoes, old shoes, new terrain, knee brace, stretch, weight lifting, you name it.

It was a difficult, painful, tear-filled decision, but I decided to step out of the Chicago Marathon.

You hear of runners who drop dead at mile 22 of a marathon, who mess their muscles up so badly they can't walk, who die of heart attacks... Want to know how that happens? It's because so often we forget what a strain we put on our body. We ignore the fact that we're asking it to perform over and over again. We completely stop listening to what our bodies are telling us. In this runner's case, I'm going to listen.

I feel that there are some underlying problems that I may need to deal with. Mainly I need to focus on my heart (find out what my healthy and dangerous bpm are) and focus on my knees. It's not normal to sit down for 15 minutes and not be able to stand back up because you're knees stop working (especially at my age!)

I'll still be here. I'll still be exercising , but I'll be doing it because I want to.

I mentioned that I've never run pain free, well I've never run just to run either. Every single time I've ever put on my running shoes, it was a training run.

I can't wait to go out and run...




I am sad that I won't be doing the marathon, but once I finally made the decision, I felt like a huge burden was lifted off of my shoulders, which assured me that I did make the right choice for me. Running shouldn't be a burden. One day, 26.2 miles will be totally doable, but that day is not now, and that's ok.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I’m seeking professional help...

…and it’s about time!

I’ve blogged several times about my weight loss. I’ve had some success, I’ve also been a little stuck (plateau effect). I lost tons of weight right away and then sort of stopped. I will occasionally lose 5 lbs, but will usually put it back on in a few months. Just back and forth.

Here’s the deal…

I’m always training. Meaning, I’m consistently logging at least 20 miles a week. Usually more like 25+ miles a week (especially when I bumped up from half marathon training to full marathon training).

obviously not me training, but I thought it was a cute photo

I eat healthy. I don’t diet and I don’t restrict myself but I do eat very well. My food philosophy is: eat when I’m hungry. Eat veggies, fruits, and lean meats. I eat red meat 1-2 times a week. I don’t crave red meat more than that (I believe that cravings are a sign that your body needs something).

I’m tired of burning thousands of calories a month, eating healthy, and not losing any more weight. I honestly feel like I have 30 more pounds that I could lose, so it’s not like I’m complaining about 5 pounds here.

I have a feeling that while I think I’m eating healthy, I’m probably not eating healthy for my body. Each person needs some foods and really shouldn't have other foods. They are going to be different for everyone…I hope I can find out what’s right for me.


I’ve found a nutritionist and I’m visiting her today for my first appointment.

I am so excited! Today she will take a full body composition (which probably won’t be so exciting – I’ve heard that they are worse than you expect). I’ve filled out a bunch of surveys and questionnaires from her office. This is to help her determine what diet works best for me. (Diet meaning: eating habits).

After researching her and reading some testimonials it sounds like she is pretty awesome. It sounds like her philosophy is about finding foods that are good for you without making restrictions on food you love (but may not be the best for you). She’s all about living a happy, healthy life.

I’m excited to start the next chapter to a leaner, meaner, fightin’ machine!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Flavor of the Week

I wanted to give you a quick "hello" and to let you know that I'm still here!

Since my last post, I have kept up with my training. It's been difficult at times (beyond busy...I've been in 4 states in the past 3 weeks), but I haven't given up.

I just noticed that the background I had before is no longer linked on photobucket, so I had an awful icon on the middle of my blog...yuck!

I am starting to see the light at the end of this marathon training tunnel. I cannot wait for Chicago.

Hope you all are doing well!

I'll touch base in a few days...

I'll leave you with this (thanks to Pandora): Flavor of the Week by American Hi-Fi (oh yeah high school days!) -- newest addition to the playlist (I totally forgot this song existed.)