Monday, July 1, 2013

Becoming "re-accountable"... Wait, is that a word?

I'm too lazy to look it up, but if it isn't a word, it should be.  And that's really the point of this post.

I have been lazy about a lot of things.  This, for me, is a problem.  I've always been a typical hardcore Capricorn.  I make lists, check them twice and thrice, and enjoy getting things done efficiently and effectively.  Without my lists and charts and plans and firm (mostly) tangible goals, I wallow.  Sure, I get up and about and "do things" but it is very lackluster.  And I just... get... blah.  Then something happens and snaps me back to reality and I whip out my pen and paper and calculator and calendar and start planning.  And actually doing.

When I started this blog at the end of last year I had a purpose:  I was going to publicly make myself accountable for my fitness plans and workouts and, in true Capricorn fashion, keep a log for myself of things I'm doing right and wrong.  I set short term goals - a new distance, a new race, some new kind of workout "trick".... even the SBBC kept me moving.  I made it a point every week to post my plans and my actions - the good and bad.  Honestly, I'm not any busier now that I was at Christmastime and at the beginning of 2013 and I still managed to have my shit together then.

Since the Pittsburgh Half, and having no real short term plans or goals other than just building miles (which BTW is damned boring - a reason why I need speedwork in my life as a runner.  Slow and easy all the time SUCKS no matter how many different routes you take), I've been wallowing.  I've been trudging.  My runs haven't been as enjoyable as before.  More times than not I'm having to fight to keep that "oh I'm out here running on a pretty day look at me life is peachy" feeling going.  I got too comfortable with not really doing anything.

And now this injury or whatever it is.  It seems that I've become incapable of running more than 3-4 miles without whatever this pain is popping up.  I feel fine until that point (yesterday it was at 3.68 miles) but then it all goes downhill.  Sometimes it gets better later on, sometimes not.  Now, don't worry, I'm going to see the doctor but my doctors office won't give you a quick appointment unless you're on death's door.  So, I have to wait.  I'll keep you updated.  But!  After spending a couple of days (ok, maybe this whole WEEK) feeling sorry for myself and sinking deeper into the abyss, I snapped out of it.  I realized a few things.

I've become way addicted to running.  Yes, this is a good thing!  However, it is also a terrible thing!  Running is fantastic exercise.  When it's good, it's good for the body, the mind, the spirit.  The total YOU.  You can do things you never thought possible.  Along with that, if you have a personality like me, you're not satisfied with "just finishing" or "nice and easy miles".  You need that next goal, that next challenge.... and that's in most aspects of life, not just exercise.  So, you (I.. ahem) sit and make lists, chart out plans, calculate numbers.  Form grandiose equations such as "If I want to BQ in 2 years, I must do XYZ minus ABC and add in 123", etc.  It is very easy in running to take the "next big thing" to a whole new extreme if you're like me.  A lot of people can't hack it, but I can sit down and read Daniels' Running Formula like some people read 50 Shades of Grey.  I love those numbers, I love that "science", so to speak.

And then along comes an injury/setback that forces you to reevaluate things.

It came to me:  You remember that 100 pounds that's GONE?  Not one of those pounds went away due to running.  Not a single ounce.  Walking, Weightlifting, Pilates, Yoga, Calisthenics, All those Denise Austin aerobics VHS.... All that time spent on researching and taking classes in Nutrition and Diet (oh, excuse me "Lifestyle".. since the D word is no longer in style).... THAT is what brought me to where I am to have the privilege to smile at these medals hanging on my wall.  Unfortunately, I've left all these types of things in the dust for running.  Yes, even the nutrition... As much as I may have complained about it that BBC I did to make sure I got 7-9 fruits and veggies in every day was some of the healthiest eating I've ever done.  I haven't eaten that many on a consistent daily basis lately and trust me, I feel it.  I've been in the mindset of "oh, it doesn't matter - I RUN!"  "I didn't get to the gym this week.  that's ok - I RAN!", "I can't lift heavy weights, it might mess up my running!", etc.  Well, what happens when you can't or shouldn't run??

I'll tell you what happens to this lady.  I slap myself for becoming pretty much a 1 trick pony.  If I'm truly serious about going from Emergency Medicine to Sports Medicine I need to make sure I know about more than running.  I love running.  It is and I hope that it remains my "main thing".  But, I need to get my ass moving in other ways too.  Just because I can't run for 60 minutes pain free right now doesn't mean I can't spin that long.  I might not be able to go on a 90 minute long run this week, but I can run as long as I'm comfortable and follow that up with a bike ride or elliptical time.  I need to make better use of my gym membership.

On that same notion, I need to get my ass back in the game in regards to what I put in my body.  No more late night binges.  No more "let's go kill a 12 pack" nights.  In fact, I need to lay off the booze period.  I'm not in my 20s anymore and while it always seems like a good idea at the time, the next day I feel like total dogshit and I'm kicking myself in the ass.  No more oversugared, overprocessed and over frivolous food purchases.  I do not always "need" (even if I have a long run or race coming up) to have a pie, muffins, or ice cream in the house.  I need to actually use MyFitnessPal for more than keeping track of my pills and water intake.  Yep, this is my fully confessing here.

So, here's what's up.  I'm going back to posting my weekly plans, even if I'm not actively training for anything.  I have Focus T25 on the way to my house.  I figure, if I'm not running for long periods of time, I can do the 25 minute workout and add some 30 minute runs in when I feel like I can and maybe try for a longer one on the weekend.  I'm revamping my nutrition plan and eating the right things at the right times.  I'm going back to shakes and smoothies to round things out instead of mindlessly snacking on graham crackers.  Don't expect cheesy pictures of everything I eat, though.  We all know I'm a shitty photographer and honestly I just forget.

I'm ready to add some things to this adventure I call my crazy life.  Can you keep up?

This week:
Monday:  I'm going to get some form of strength training in.  Maybe some circuit training or just some light weights here at home.  I have a busy day ahead so this may come later.
Tuesday:  30 minute run.  Yes, 30 minutes.  I promise.  15-20 minutes of circuit training.
Wednesday:  60 minutes of cardio.  Either all bike or split between bike and elliptical.
Thursday:  30 minute run.  30 minute bike.  Weights.
Friday:  REST
Saturday:  30 minute run.
Sunday:  I want to try to run as long as it feels good and then once the pain kicks in just stop.  Then round out until I get 90 minutes of cardio between the run and the bike, even just walking, or elliptical.

I'll be lucky to get 15 miles in this week, but that's ok until I can get this leg thing figured out.  But I'll still be burning up those calories and bringing it in other ways!  And I just realized that Thursday is the 4th of July so I may have to switch the Thursday and Friday routines.  But they'll be done.

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