That Was Then; This is Now
Some time ago I wrote about how it takes me awhile to mentally catch up to where I actually am physically. So when I lose weight and inches I continue to view myself as before, but the same is true for when I begin to gain weight and inches. Then I have this sort of “Oh Shit” moment and I have to really readjust. There is no more hiding.
When I first started running after being sick, I thought I had a plan. But as it turns out, you actually have to follow the plan in order for it to really work. You can’t cheat. And you really do have to listen to you body. Or you wind up sick all over again. Which is sort of what happened to me. I rushed running, and also used some of my best times and some of my longest distances as my barometer for success. I failed miserably, which caused it’s own negative loop of both behavior and motivation. The whole idea that I did this last year with this time so I should be able to do at least this this year doesn’t really hold water. In addition, I believe, the stress I kept putting on my body caused more problems, which in turn made it harder to run, which in turn made me feel badly about myself, which in turn made me try harder, which I’m not ready for, which made the whole damn thing start all over.
So me being me, I have two alternatives: 1. Tweak and keep trying or 2. Go curl up and cry and then tweak and keep trying. I chose option two. For awhile, I just sort of laid back after each failure. At first I tried to pretend that it didn’t bother me, but in reality I was just hiding. So, I let my runs continue to lose time, because I didn’t have time, because I didn’t get out of bed, because I was laying there with the covers up over my head. Whoever that woman was who bounced out of bed singing at four had left the building, or maybe I kicked her out. I didn’t even want to know her anymore. God! Why did I even ever start this? I’m forty eight, when am I just going to let myself be? Well, never really.
So I tried tweaking and adding in the biking, which is kind of when you think about it sort of one of the worst ideas I ever had in some ways. You know, considering biking creates wind and it is Fucking February! And I really don’t have gear. But, hey, why let that stop me. I mean after all I did bike well about two years ago. I’m sure I can still do it like it’s October 2014. But, in some ways it was the best idea I had. I have cut down my strength training by about ten minutes, gotten to the gym a little earlier and now have added thirty to thirty five minutes on the bike about twice a week, sometimes less. And I do believe it not only will help my runs but I feel better after working up a serious sweat. Something that doesn’t happen when I just lift weights. It’s too easy to fade out. I will probably only bike on Sundays when it is warm and dry. Which means tomorrow is out.
And I did toss my name into the Broad Street Run lottery, so I have a goal and something to train for. I was pretty ambiguous about that, you know considering my recent failures but after some serious self reflection I know I like myself better when I am pushing myself. I just have to be honest with myself. And sometimes honesty sucks. Such as when you realize that you have gained a lot, if not all, of the weight back that you (I) lost the summer of 2014. And I have gained an inch and a half around my middle. So, it makes sense that my runs are both slower and more difficult. After all I am carrying quite a bit more around with me than I had been before.
So I have created an honest plan for myself, and I call it: Dun, dun DUNNNNN:
Yeah, I know, it is sort of satanic but really it stands for Six Weeks, Six Pounds, Six Miles. (If I capitalize it, it makes it official). And if sometimes it feels like hell, well then it is appropriately named. What I want is to have a measurable goal in a specific framework of time. I can do anything for six weeks and when WHEN I reach these goals I think I will be able to create some new ones. What this plan focuses on is increasing my stamina and my accountability to myself. So I am going back to logging my food through My Fitness Pal, but if I can I want to log it in writing as well. I like My Fitness Pal because it keeps such good track of so many things, but I think there is something to the physical act of writing something down. And I have a weekly running plan which doesn’t really include speed work outs because my mileage has gotten so low. What it does include is running three days a week though, because I think that is the bare minimum to build up distance. Eventually I may bring that number up to four. It is, I hope, a plan that allows me to slowly increase my load. Two to three days a week I want to bike and strength train. For now, that means the stationary bike.
When I originally came up with this amazingly creative and unique brainstorm (read sarcastically) I wanted to shout it to the world and see who might want to join me. (Not sarcasm.) We could share successes, maybe good recipes, good days, down days, the whole nine yards. After all, we would be working on something together. Hey! Maybe a whole lot of people would want to join me and create their own six week plans based on where they are and their goals. We could create a MOVEMENT! A Facebook page even!!!!
And then reality set in. If anyone has even made it to the bottom of this long post, they are thanking the heavens that it is anonymous and they can quietly back away from the Looney Woman. But, for anyone who did make it to the bottom of the page, I know you are so excited (heavy sarcasm) to see: This is My Plan!!!!
So there it is. Want to create your own plan and join me? (Not sarcasm.) We won’t be besties or anything because you know, I don’t really like people a whole lot (only sort of sarcasm), but we could share successes!