Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Catching Up

Sorry!!!  Just thought I'd post a few bullet points of what's going on with me lately since it's been a bit.  I am actually crazy busy trying to prepare for a visit from my family, hence the radio silence.  You will probably get a bit more radio silence over the next couple of weeks, but I will try my best to post if I can.

1.  Yes, I'm still running

Last Friday the weather calmed down enough for me to take Molly with me and do a "walk the dog a mile, run by myself a mile" thing.  I did 4 miles all together, 2 of them being running.  Saturday was freaking awesome and I did 6 miles pretty easily, AND my pace was great!  Yesterday was kind of a downer because I tried to go for a run and only made it 1.5 miles thanks to PMS symptoms.  I did do a total of 3 miles because I walked 1.5 with Molly.  I plan on running tomorrow, possibly Friday and then doing a long run before we go pick my dad up.  And hopefully I can do some runs when they are here before everyone gets up in the morning.

2.  Family time!

I am very excited that my family is coming up to see us.  My brother/SIL/niece will be up here for a week and my dad will be here for 2 weeks (one week overlaps where everyone will be here).  My brother hasn't been up here in like 9, 10 years or something, so it will be fun to show him around.  I love taking people around Portland!  My mom is staying back home to hold down the fort and feed everyone's cats (and probably throwing a parade over the alone time).  My aunt and I are so crazy that we have a shared Google doc to coordinate meals/activities, but hey, at least we're organized!

3.  I saw Jurassic World

I was happy that some friends from my old job asked us to go see JW with them, even though I really hadn't planned on seeing JW.  I mainly just wanted to catch up with the friends since I hadn't seen them since we went to their wedding almost a year ago.  I did laugh at my friend Nick, who was trying to have this philosophical discussion about the Jurassic Park movie franchise and all the plot lines, and his wife turns to him and says in her dry manner, "All anyone really needs to know about the plot of any of those movies is that there are dinosaurs and they're in a park.  And they will get out and eat people."   And there were indeed dinosaurs in a park that ate people in this one.  The movie was pretty entertaining, though a couple of things bugged me.  The whole thing with the chick having to be in high heels the whole time was like, what.  Kind of dumb.  And I personally got my feathers ruffled at a scene where the chick's sister snottily tells her "WHEN you have kids" after the girl had expressed not really being sure if she wants them.  It just hit close to home and some of my personal encounters with people, but at the end of the day we're talking about a movie where a genetically modified dinosaur gets out and eats a bunch of people, so I'll let that one go.  What I did get my skirt blown up about was seeing the trailer for Star Wars.  I am trying so hard to not get pumped for it, but I'm totally getting pumped for it.  Like seriously.  I can barely wait!!

4.  Going to see Brian Wilson

So this was unexpected and awesome, but Brian Wilson actually is coming to a casino up here next month, which is spooky timing after just having seen Love & Mercy.  I asked my aunt if she'd want to go with me, so we got tickets and are going.  I am SO excited!  The term "blessed" gets overused, but I definitely feel blessed and humbled at the music acts I've seen and will see this year.  These people will not be around forever, so it's good to get out there while you can.  One of my most cherished shows is the BB King and Etta James show we saw a few years ago.  Etta died not long after and of course we lost BB recently.  We're losing good people and can't take them for granted.  I get really irritated when people make fun of bands like the Rolling Stones or Aerosmith for continuing to tour.  I mean...they're rock stars.  What are they supposed to do, retire and start doing some stereotypical old man hobby?  What's with the ageism shit?  I think anyone who is still out rocking it should be commended and not made fun of, because shredding guitar in your 70s is pretty badass.  Anyway, to my point, we're seeing Aerosmith and The Who later in the year, and now Brian Wilson.  Actually, we have quite a few shows coming up!

That's really about all the news going on around here.  Hopefully I can touch base more in the next 2 weeks!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Head Games

I have done it again!  I went out this morning and ran 5.5 miles, and even left the house early no less in order to get it done!  Before I get into the deets, just thought I'd talk a little bit about my strategy for the next couple of months when it comes to running.

I feel ridiculously good lately and motivated to run.  I don't know where the hell this motivation came from, pretty much nothing in my life has changed, but I am just rolling with it.  Part of me thinks my motivation comes from ice cream, because it's hot and I want to eat ice cream, but can't justify the calorie expense unless I go for a run.  That's shallow and not something a "real" runner would do perhaps, but I'm also rolling with it.  Anyway I decided that from now until marathon training that I'll just be doing "dealer's choice" runs at least 3 times a week.  It can be any distance from 2-6 miles, and it can be any 3 days (or more), which I feel is a strategy that will give me flexibility while also giving me a bit of discipline and getting myself used to getting out there and doing runs.  I do need to build up a running base, so I feel like that's what I'm doing even if ice cream is a bigger motivator over marathon medals for the moment.

So back to today's run.  Today was one of those times where the mental struggles that come with marathon training come back, and it's not your body that is fighting you, but it's your brain.  Fighting with your brain is WAY worse that something being physically wrong with you.  If something on you hurts in the bad way, well you just stop and let yourself heal up without question.  With the mental stuff, your brain keeps saying all these crazy things and begging you to stop, even though you know physically you are just fine and need to keep going.  So that was my whole run today, was wanting to quit and arguing with myself.  And to an extent I'm always like that, and I always want to quit for the first 1-2 miles even when things are going good.

It will come as no shock to you that the weather was probably the main thing causing the mental distress.  I did what I was supposed to and got out there early, but it was still so hot and humid that it felt like someone was constantly trying to wrap a wet quilt around me as I was running.  The humidity was giving me the sensation of not being able to breathe, which was making me panicky.  The first two intervals (I was doing 1 mile/0.10 mile intervals again) were okay, it was just mainly me trying to work through hip pain.  I pretty much always have hip pain so, no biggie there.  But that third interval, oh my God.  It was so hard, I was panicking about being hot and not being able to breathe and just hating my life.  The arguing about wanting to quit set in, and even thinking "well you SAID dealer's choice, you could stop" and then thinking "you HAVE to get used to running in the heat, there is no way around it, so quit being a titty baby about it."  It's so like when Gollum/Schmiegel are arguing in LOTR, that's my brain pretty much.

I was trying my damnedest to distract myself and pull out of the negativity.  I tried to concentrate on how some houses have a ton of jasmine bushes in their yards, and the smell is so heavenly that it's like a bit of aromatherapy on the runs.  I got a mini boost of happiness from some adorable duck friends who were randomly in the middle of this subdivision:

But still, I could not break out of this horrible headspace.  Finally, I started thinking about my ladies group, and let me just tell you, all of my friends in there have been so inspirational lately and really getting after things.  I thought about Tiina from One Crazy Penguin who is training for a tri, and didn't let a cold stop her from getting in a bike ride AND going for runs in the heat when I know it must have been so miserable physically.  I thought about Meg from Running Just As Fast As She Can, who never gives excuses and the other day just did a 4 mile run while pushing her twin boys in a double stroller.  I thought about Anna from Losing My Puppy who is in the middle of a home restoration project, which I admire so much because it's something I'm not able to do.  (Seriously, ready the bail money and light a candle at the nearest church if you ever hear of me attempting a huge reno project).  I thought about Jessica from A Little More Each Day, and how dedicated she is to running and how she's always out there getting her training done.  And the list goes on and on, there are so many amazing ladies in our group who are doing things that are so awesome.  Many of them are doing things so much harder than a 5.5 mile "just because" run, and I felt like if they didn't quit, then I shouldn't either.  I knew if they were there (and this is crazy because I've never met any of these women in person), that they would be telling me I CAN get through it, even though it sucks, and that I'll feel good about myself afterwards.

I did get through it, it did suck, and I did feel really good afterwards.  I was also was somehow a minute faster than I was on Saturday if you can believe that.  I am SO glad I stuck it out.

On a non-running front, it's been hotter than balls here, and our thermostat hit 100 degrees yesterday.

And my garden has been blowing up and there are so many crazy flowers from my "Save The Bees" and "Bring Home The Butterflies" seed packets I planted.  Half the time I don't know what they are, but lately some beautiful poppy varietals have been coming up.  These are apparently Iceland poppies, and they are just so gorgeous and delicate.

Georgia O'Keefe would love that last one.  Just sayin'....

Oh and last but not least, the kiwi.  After a sooner than usual bloom and a daily scramble to get out and self pollinate the crazy thing, baby kiwis are starting to emerge.  I will probably do a more accurate count when they're bigger, but I counted 46 kiwis yesterday.  We are so in trouble this fall!

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Heat Is On

Hold on to your drawers ladies and gentlemen, because I ran a total of 7.5 miles this weekend.    Saturday was a pretty great and productive day, and started with a 5.5 mile run.  Yes, you heard that right.  Mary, whose mortal enemy is heat, got up early on a day where the temps were going to be 91 (actually ended up at 96) and went for a run  for no reason other than I wanted to and felt like I should.  It's the end times people!

The whole thing happened with no fussing, angst or drama.  Eric had an early morning appointment to get his car serviced, and I was going to have to move my car since I was parked behind him.  I decided the night before that if I had to put on a bra and pants that early in the morning to be decent for society in order to move my car, then that bra and pants might as well be part of a running outfit, and since I was up so early I might as well get a run in before it was a thousand degrees.  I knew with the heat that we planned to basically hide in a dark house and not see the sun for roughly 10 hours, and the thought of sitting on the couch without having had some activity in made me feel guilty.  So I got out and ran, and it was actually pretty wonderful.  It was definitely getting hot fast, but I picked a neighborhood that has tons of tree cover, so it was actually pretty pleasant for the most part.  I was SO proud of myself when I was done, and I flopped on the couch in the AC to watch a music documentary with not a shred of guilt.

Sunday was even hotter than Saturday, and both Eric and I planned to go see a movie (more on that in a moment).  Again, I felt guilty at the thought of going and doing that without doing some kind of activity, so I cajoled Eric into coming with me to the nice neighborhood and walking Molly while I did a two mile run.  He agreed, so we threw on workout clothes and hopped to it.  I started out a bit later than I did Saturday and that 2 mile run felt 10 times harder than the 5.5 mile run.  It was SO hot and humid, I was having trouble breathing, plus I didn't Galloway the run since I didn't want to make Eric and Molly wait in the heat.  My hip was and is really bothering me, so I am taking a break from running today and will probably go do a short one tomorrow.

On a non running front this weekend, we dashed out to the movies on Sunday to see the movie "Love & Mercy", an interesting little movie about Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys.  I absolutely love the Beach Boys and wasn't really aware of this movie until all of the reviews started coming out, so I pretty much demanded we go!  Basically it flips between the 60's when Wilson was making Pet Sounds, and  the 90's when Wilson was  quasi imprisoned by this psychiatrist creeper dude.  Overall I really loved the movie, but there were a couple of things I had issues with.

They have two actors playing BW in the 2 different eras.  60's era BW is played by Paul Dano, who I absolutely love and think is such an underrated actor.  He's been in a bunch of stuff, but my other favorite performance from him was in There Will Be Blood.  He is absolutely perfect in this movie and just disappears into the role.  He looks so much like BW that it's scary, and his vulnerability and desperate need for approval really tugged my heart strings.  The 60's scenes were pretty much perfection.  The 90's BW was played by John Cusack just didn't work for me.  Besides the fact that he looks nothing at ALL like BW or even Paul Dano playing BW, I just could not separate that it was John Cusack.  And I like John Cusack, his acting was actually on point in the movie, but I just could not get past his looks for some reason.  The movie flashes back and forth between periods, so I'd be completely sucked in and enthralled with the 60's stuff, and then suddenly BAM.  John Cusack with bad hair and too much makeup, and it would take me out of the moment a bit.  It's like, we can do just about anything these days in the movies with makeup and prosthetics, could you just have aged up Paul Dano a bit and had him play both eras?  But overall the movie made me appreciate the Beach Boys more than I already did, and it also helped me understand Brian Wilson and feel an incredible amount of empathy for what he struggled with.  Here is the trailer if you are curious:

Also in "the more you know" news, I did not realize that Mike Love from the Beach Boys (who apparently was always an inflamed raging butthole) is the uncle of Kevin Love from the Cleveland Cavs.  Small world I suppose, but now that I know I can definitely see the resemblance.

I also found this in digging around on Youtube.  Among the many studio scenes, there was one of them making the song "Good Vibrations", and after watching this video they NAILED it.  Anyway, I'll stop before I hardcore geek out on music like I always do and bore the crap out of you, and I'll just leave you with some good vibrations.  ;)

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Marathon Training Fueling Methods

So on a recent post Meg from Running Just As Fast As She Can commented and asked me what my fueling plans were for marathon training/the marathon.  I thought it would be fun to actually do a whole post about fueling if for no other reason than to organize myself.  Hopefully it will help someone else though!  I'm probably going to somewhat follow what I did for my first marathon, with many tweaks now that I know what to expect and have a little more experience under my belt.

When To Fuel?

My general rule is that if a run is under 5 miles, typically all I'm going to have is water, and I will probably not carry that with me unless it is insanely hot.  Usually what I do is just leave my water bottle in the car so I don't have to schlep it everywhere.  When my runs were 5 miles and over, I incorporated bottles of water with Nuun tablets in them rather than drink sports drinks.  The great thing about Nuun is that it doesn't have a lot of chemical crap in it, but of course the downside is that you would have to carry it with you if the race you're doing isn't using that.  I *think* the Portland Marathon had Nuun so I didn't have to carry it with me, but I'm struggling to remember.  The Seattle Marathon is using Gatorade Endurance, and while I'm not a huge Gatorade fan I think I might try using that as my drink so that I am used to training with it and won't have to carry sports drink up to Seattle.

What To Fuel?

When my run hits 7 miles, I will use fueling methods and sports drinks.  Check out what your race is using and try to incorporate that as your options.  If it doesn't set well with your stomach then you will have to experiment to find a better option for you.  When I first started out I used chocolate mint Gu, and it worked well for me until it suddenly didn't, and started randomly hurting my stomach.  I switched to Shot Bloks and tolerated those a lot better.  I've used Shot Bloks ever since, and am especially a fan of the tropical punch ones.  I also was a big fan of freezing coconut water to have mid-run.  This go around I want to explore Stinger Waffles and maybe some natural options such as honey sticks or dates.  Every fueling method you use that isn't what the race is using is one more thing you will have to carry on your person at race day, so bear that in mind.  You'll have to balance how much you need, what you can carry, and when you fuel.  It's basically one big experiment, but that's what training is for is to figure out what works best for you.

Make Your Own Fueling Station

So when I trained the last time I would use either my house or my car as a fueling station, and would plan to stop by every 5 miles or so to get whatever drink or thing that I needed.  This was pretty sweet because I didn't have to carry everything on me, it would just be waiting for me just like it would be at an actual race.  If I used my car as my "station", I just packed an ice cooler with nice cold water/sports drink, Bandaids, Glide/Vaseline and of course my Bloks or Gu packets.  When I used my house as my station it was pretty sweet because I knew there was a bathroom waiting for me.  Of course the wrinkle there is to not take too long of a break at home, even though that is really tempting.  God knows I took much longer breaks than necessary and it made it really hard to get back out there, but it worked for me.  Anyway, study the course map for the race and then try to practice stopping at the mile points that you reasonably think you'll need fuel.


Lay ALL of the crap you need out the night before.  This goes for fuel, breakfast options, clothing, etc.  It is a pain in the ass but you'll kiss yourself in the morning when you're stumbling into the kitchen at 5 am and hating the world.  If you're using a cooler, have it ready to be filled with ice and get outta dodge.

Treat Yo'self!

Every weight loss advice thing in the world says to not reward yourself with food, and to instead go get a massage or a pedicure.  And my expert advice courtesy of My Life University is...screw that shit.  Marathon training absolutely sucks, mostly from the mental standpoint.  Sometimes the only thing that kept me going was thinking about whatever sugary atrocity I'd bought for myself as a reward at the end of a long run.  Obviously you don't want to go apeshit with it, but go get a special, treasured treat that you only get to have on long run days.  Knowing some silly thing is waiting for you becomes monumental.  My poison of choice is always something cold and sugary:  a Frosty from Wendy's, an ice cold Mexican Pepsi, a single serving thing of ice cream, sorbet pops, etc.  I did overdo it the last time I was training, but I feel like I'm in a better headspace this time and can plan my treats a little more wisely.

Anyway, that is really about it.  If you have any questions or want to tell me about your fueling methods, sound off in the comments!

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

National Running Day + A TV Rant

Today is National Running Day, so if you're a runner, get your butt out there!  I had planned to rest today, but between Running Day and a friend asking us to go out for beers tonight, I figured I'd better get out and do the needful.

My run today was REALLY difficult due to heat and humidity, but I ended up doing 4.5 miles at the library park!  I definitely wanted to quit about midway through had to push myself at the end, I really was having breathing issues due to the weather, but I got it done.  I'm also pleased to report that my average pace yesterday was 14:16, and today it was 13:36, so despite how hard things felt I actually improved my time just a tiny bit.  I am loving this Galloway thing more by the day!  Today I used a 0.75/0.15 run walk ratio, and I feel like that will be a really good balance for me right now.  I may do one more run tomorrow, and then the rest of the week is going to be questionable because it's going to get in the damn 90s.  I am SO not happy about that.  I suppose I could get up super early Friday and try to do my thing, so we'll see.

So I have a little TV show rant that I'll ask you to bear with me on.  I know some of you watch Extreme Weight Loss with Chris Powell, as do I because I simply can't watch The Biggest Loser anymore due to the drama and product placement stuff.  I've started to notice a few things that are bugging me about EWL though to the point that I want to stop watching it as well, and I'm wondering if anyone else is noticing these things too.

First of all, I really hate that Chris now makes people weigh in shirtless in front of roughly 50-100 people.  I really don't understand why that's necessary, and completely disagree with the guise of it being a "reality check" or anything like that.  Look, an obese person knows they are obese.  They don't need a reality check via standing nearly nude in front of a crowd of people they know, to me it just perpetuates the idea that these people are a freak show to gawk at and humiliate.  I mean hell, I feel a lot prettier and sexier now after losing almost 30 pounds, and I would still slap someone silly if they suggested I weigh in publicly in only a bra and shorts.  When the show started, the weigh ins were done privately, which I really think was better and just seemed to allow some dignity for the person involved.  If the person sees the scale read 400 pounds in a room with just themselves and Chris, isn't that just as much of a wake up call as them seeing that number while shirtless in front of 50 friends and family?  I dunno, the public weigh ins just reek of typical network ratings bullshit, and I don't really like it.

But the main thing that's bugging me now though is that every contestant has some over the top horrible thing that has happened to them, to the point where I'm depressed for most of the show.  I don't remember it being like that when the show started, but now it's a circle jerk of tragedy every single week.  It's literally always like, "my parents abandoned me on the side of the freeway as an infant so I went to live with my uncle, who then beat me daily while I watched my beloved family dog get hit by a car.  Then I found the love of my life but she died of cancer while giving birth to our first child."  I am certainly not trying to minimize past contestant's life experiences, obviously bad things can and do happen to people and can cause them to comfort themselves with food in order to combat depression.  I totally get it, I am not without empathy.  But week after week, it's the same thing, the show focuses on whatever the horrible traumatic story of the week is (again for ratings and emotional manipulation), rather than focusing on what methods they are using to lose weight.

Think about it, do you ever hear what these people are eating, what macros they're focusing on, what workouts they're doing, how often, etc?  No, you do not.  It's like, I get it, so and so is sad for X amount of reasons, and clearly they are overcoming the odds...but what are they doing to overcome it?  I just felt especially bothered this week because Chris kept bringing up the one contestant's dead dad every 5 minutes.  No matter what the guy did it was like, "Do you think your dad is smiling down right now?" or "what would your dad think about this?"  I mean it's like dude we get it, the guy's dad died tragically, the dude put on weight due to PTSD, the guy wishes his dad was still alive.  We do not need to continually wallow in this guy's tragedy for our own amusement.  Again, I'm not a mean person and it's nothing against the contestant, I just hate manipulative tactics on these reality shows.  You can practically hear some corporate asshole in a suit saying, "Oh the viewers will have to get the Kleenex out this week, the ratings will be through the roof!"  It just creeps me out.

Also, to me it reinforces the idea that if you're overweight then you have something severely wrong with you and are damaged in some way.  That just simply isn't the case for a lot of people.  I spent years trying to figure out what was "wrong" and what deep seated reason I had for being overweight because of this notion that something clearly has to be wrong if you are overweight.  I had a great childhood with a loving family and a pretty standard existence.  I was bullied in school, and while that affected how I view women and my ability to make friends with women, I honestly don't think think about it much.  Trust me, I made a much better life for myself than the redneck girls who bullied me, so I pretty much got the last laugh and feel good about it.  I've had decent jobs, good friends and now a very loving husband whom I have a ton of fun with.

Turns out...nothing is wrong with me, I'm fat because I like food, booze, cooking and I'm really lazy, plus had a desk job.  I put on happy weight after getting married because drunken happy hours eating fatty, sugary delights with my amazing husband are really damn fun.  Snuggling and binge watching movies on the couch while eating bowls of ice cream is super fun.  Nachos and two bottle wine nights while watching a comedy special and laughing hysterically are fun.  Getting drunk at beer festivals and then eating a huge, messy pastrami sandwich to sober up is fun.  I piled on the pounds and was in denial about it until I was 250 pounds and was like well shit, guess I got myself in a pickle.  Then the prospect of having to lose that weight was overwhelming and I am very lazy, so it took me a long time to come to terms with that and figure out a way to do something about it that worked for me.  It really is as simple as that, and I know that's not very sexy or would drive ratings, but it's the truth.

I can't be alone in being overweight because of really loving food, and just really feel like they could do a better job balancing out some of these crazy stories with some "I'm fat because food is awesome and time slipped up on me" stories.  They could show standard meals the contestants are eating, and have a section where they share a healthy recipe.  They NEVER talk about nutrition, and as anyone who is successful in weight loss will tell you, nutrition is pretty much key to the process.  Why don't they show anything about that then?  They also could show a normal workout that isn't some insane bullshit like them hanging 20 pound kettlebells from their nipples while climbing Machu Piccu.  I mean seriously, am I wrong?  It's always some crazy ass thing like that.  No wonder people are scared to death and intimidated by losing weight.

Anyway, it's probably yet another reality show I used to really like that I'll have to take off the DVR.  Which is fine, because I probably shouldn't watch so much TV anyway.  :P

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Run Walk Run

Today I put on my "Mary the serious runner" hat and went out for another little training run, emphasis on the little because it was just two miles, but at least I got out there.  I started out with a 1 mile warm up walk with Molly, because we are fortunate enough to have rainy temps in the 50's, so I was able to leave her in the car while I did my run.  She gets so fussy and rambunctious when I don't take her with me for her walk that it makes me feel bad, so I'm taking her while the weather permits.  Sadly that won't be much longer since it's supposed to get in the stupid 90's at the end of the week.

Today I set my run/walk ratio for 0.75/0.25 (miles of course), and while I still have some tweaking to do, I determined that doing my Galloway run/walk ratio by distance rather than time is definitely a better way to go for me.  While I can't see my pace I at least know how far I'm going, which satisfies my need for a whole or half numbered distance.  For instance my distance yesterday was 1.79 miles, which drove me INSANE thinking about it all day.  It either has to be a whole or a half number (ie 2.5).  Anything in between irks me because I am special like that.  I feel like for pace I can just turn on RunKeeper or something.  Like I said, the distance thing definitely works better for me and will be easier to calculate how many interval repetitions I'll need once I start going longer distances.  Having a walk break of 0.25 miles was much too long though, and I think I might try 0.10 next time.  Eventually I'd like to work up to having the run ratio be a mile and the walk portion be 0.10 or 0.15.  I know as my stamina goes up, all of those details will work themselves out.  I have to say, I'm very confident that really following the Galloway method is the right choice for me.  Having my Garmin counting things down took a lot of stress and worry out of the run, and I can't believe I used to try to do this by mentally calculating the numbers and all of that.  I mean what was I thinking!?  I have to count on my fingers just to do simple math, why did I think I could Beautiful Mind my way through the Galloway Method?  It helped mentally to know that a walk break was coming up, and I was able to let go of the angst and just run.  I felt good although my legs are still so damn sore from the race Saturday.  I may lay off tomorrow and let my legs recover.

I did pull my calendar out last night (I always get one just for workout stuff) and start to ponder when I am really starting to train in earnest.  The plan I was originally using is 16 weeks, which would start me off in August.  The plan on the Galloway site is 30 weeks, but I honestly think that's more beginner, "I've never done a race in my life" level.  I think I might start two weeks ahead of the original schedule I was using, use the milage plan from my original training thing, but obviously Galloway it.  I figure the two week jump start will give me a nice cushion so that I can repeat days if needed, or just in case I miss a run.  Our July is a bit crazy, but I'm sure I can squeeze everything in since it'll be short runs to start.

The nutrition thing will take a little more planning and finesse, and I think it's just going to come down to me making a list of snacks and fast meals and sticking to it.  I foresee a lot of prepping food into tupperwares in my future.  Kind of annoying, but it's the only way really.  Once training gets going I am also going to tweak the macro percentages in MFP for my protein, fat and carbs to make sure that I am hitting appropriate levels on those.  Also, right now my calorie allotment is 1500 a day, which works fine for now but once I get into 5+ mile runs, I may bump that allotment up to 1650 a day.  I'm hoping that extra 150 a day will strike the right balance of allowing for an extra snack a day so I won't be famished, while also keeping things on the level so I'm not overeating.  I can always reevaluate one way or the other if I'm constantly starving or if I'm not losing weight.

Anyway, I am feeling much less worried than yesterday, and feel like I somewhat have a game plan in place.  Now all I've got to do is just follow it.  :)

Monday, June 1, 2015

Why So Serious?

If you guys have been reading my blog for any amount of time, I think you know what I'm about.  Despite my cranky, quirky ways I'm actually a pretty laid back, fun loving girl.  While I may talk about woes or concerns, usually most of that talk is spent deflecting things with humor or self deprecation, and I typically have a "things will work themselves out" kind of attitude with a big side of Scarlet O'Hara's "I'll think about that tomorrow" philosophy.  I don't do structure or rigidity very well, my little Sagittarius brain just hates it.  However my super hot walk at the library the other day coupled with the race on Saturday began to get my worry wheels turning.  I really have not been running much lately, I've been averaging about once a month for most of this year.  I've been active in other ways, but running has not been top dog for me, and that's a problem.

After Saturday (and a very sore day yesterday), I realized that um yeah, I have a marathon to run in November.  It is not a silly untimed 5k that I can not think about until the day before.  There are train tickets and a vacation rental involved.  There are other people involved who are coming with me.  And most importantly, I'm involved, and I would like to escape the experience without being crippled for life.  And you know, it might be nice to finish sooner than 7 hours, all while looking thin and fly as hell.  Accomplishing all of these things is going to take some doing, and I can't keep ignoring it.

I sometimes shudder when I think about my first marathon.  I constantly have people tell me that I'm amazing and inspiring for doing a marathon, but I honestly cringe because if they only knew what little effort I brought to the table in 2013, they wouldn't say it.  That I managed to pull it off without injury or ill effect was nothing short of amazing.  I put no thought towards nutrition, and went into the race just as overweight as when I started.  I ran only once a week, just my long runs.  No speed work, no short runs, no cross training, none of that.  Looking back on it, it was insane and foolish to even step out onto the course.  I mean I did it and yay for that, but damn.  Things just have to be different this time, and I'm worried about that, because I really, really have to work at being consistent and dedicated to training.  It's not something that comes naturally to me, it's something I have to force, which can sometimes become problematic.  I tend to get very resentful when I'm forcing myself to be someone I'm not, and then things become very haywire.  It's why I can't hop on the vegan, paleo, crossfit, gluten free, low carb, no sugar etc etc trains because...none of that stuff is me.  At the same time though, I am going to have to figure out a system that works for me for marathon training while also balancing that system with methods that are going to get me across the finish line in a somewhat healthy state.

I think I am going to try to do the Galloway Method for training this time around, and am currently in the process of figuring out the best interval options for me and how to program my Garmin.  I'm actually pretty excited about that, I'm such a nut that it's never occurred to me to you know, actually use my Garmin for interval running!  Anyways, I did go for a short run today using a run 4 minutes/walk 1 minute ratio, but the setting drove me crazy because I couldn't see the actual distance/pace I was going in real time.  I feel like I'd be happier doing a run/walk ratio by distance instead of time.  Regardless, I felt so much more structured having that planned walk break, and I could definitely see where the Galloway method may be my best shot at a structured training plan that wouldn't be overwhelming.  I also stated plugging my Garmin into the computer to download the data, and I'd like to at least pay attention to things normal runners pay attention to, ie splits and whether my pace is improving.  My biggest issue will be making sure that I stick to a consistent running schedule, but I am just going to have to push myself.

I think meals will be easier this time around, especially now that I am really back to using MFP on a more regular basis.  Trying to lose weight while marathon training is probably going to be tricky, or according to the internets it is, but I think continuing to track and making sure that I'm getting a good balance of nutrition AND treats will make things doable.

I also have a lot more support this go around.  Last time I was basically all on my own except for my husband, a couple of coworkers and my family.  (Well and of course you readers!)  This time I have more readers, plus my ladies challenge group has been a godsend in the last few months when it comes to support and a safe space to vent.  I know I can count on them for this too!  And obvs my family is still very supportive and has my back no matter what.

Anyway, thanks for reading my wall of psychosis.  ;)