Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Updates and Becoming a Minimalist


There's not much going on these days since I'm not training excessively for a monumental event but I've got to admit I'm really enjoying it. Since I only retired from racing, not running I went out with Autumn for about 6 miles on Sunday morning. It was stupid. Dark, cold, windy and snowy/icy. We called it a trail run since we had to do so much navigating over terrain to not totally face plant. In my attempt to become a minimalist I didn't wear my Garmin. I still wanted to know what I'd done after the fact so I synced it up and zipped it into a pocket where I couldn't see it. When we were done running, I pulled it out, hit stop, and didn't even jog in small circles for 2 minutes to get the mileage to a more even number.

That's a big deal guys!

As far as becoming a minimalist (and I use this term very loosely) I'm really just getting rid of a couple of things, and maybe not even entirely. First to go was the scale. It's been about a week now since I've weighed myself and because I'm apparently an addict it's surprisingly difficult to not run into the kitchen and hop on every few minutes. BUT I have been able to resist so far and if I just look at my pants and in mirrors I'm doing a much better job of recognizing progress. After my burger and fries Sunday night while watching football I was definitely "puffy" but I didn't let that send me into a tailspin. I used to have a bad habit of weighing myself before and sometimes during after meals to "assess the damage" which is completely insane and unreasonable but it usually had the intended effect for a few minutes of me hating myself and vowing never to eat (either a certain food or just in general) again. This time I ate because I wanted to and because it was delicious. Then I went home and was admittedly anxious like any addict who has their vice removed but I made it through the rest of the night off the scale and I think I may have broken a plateau. I'm not ready to completely throw the scale away, particularly because The Colonel has a boxing match coming up and actually needs to know his weight, but I'm to a point where I can look at it and not get on which is huge.

Next on the list is the Garmin. Like I said, I do still want to know what I did at the end of the day but I'm not going to stare at my watch and base the success of a run on milesplits and average paces. I'm trying to learn to truly listen to my body. Run based on how I feel, for as long as I feel like and ultimately get to a point where I don't need a watch at all and I can say, oh I ran for 2 hours so that was about 12 miles. (I wish I could run 12 in 2...) Not being able to see my watch took a lot of pressure off of the run and made it a lot more fun. I think it also helped me not to push my leg too hard. 6 miles is the longest I've run outside since October and 2 days later I'm still painfree (as far as the stress fracture). I think a big part of me remaining injury free over the next year will be learning to hear what my body is saying.

And finally, for now, I've ditched the training plan. What use is a training plan when there's no race, right? So this was an easy one to let go of. Included is also letting go somewhat of tracking my exercise. I like being able to do what I want. Sunday, I went for a kind of random run. Sunday night I ate a bad (health wise) dinner then came home and did some thrown together yoga while watching more football. Monday morning I went to my first TRX bootcamp (and paid dearly for aforementioned bad dinner) with the great Ami aka Fit With Flash and it was hard and amazing. I didn't worry about being too sore to complete some other mandatory workout. I didn't worry about how I would make time for another hour of exercise on top of the other 2 hours rigidly inserted into my day. I just did it. And it was great.

I'm on DailyMile as you know and I love keeping up with my friends on there, I just don't care to keep up with what I'm doing. I used to be driven by getting that email saying what a "stellar training week" I had and compiling my mileage and times into colorful little blurbs I could smile over. In addition to listening to my body, I'm trying to also become my own motivation. It's something I've struggled with my entire life. Being unable to see any worth in myself is what has led me and sometimes continues to lead me up and down my rollercoasters of depression, anxiety and eating problems. So maybe, just maybe, if I try to be more introspective I can at least extend the time between flare ups. I don't know that those things will ever go away or that I'll "recover" from my issues but if I can learn to cope and control my reactions to circumstances better I think everything will be better.

So that's what's going on around here. A lot of thinking. A lot of fru fru holistic craziness. Introspection, sage burning, essential oils, etc. etc. I'm still enjoying my job and my coworkers and still studying for what's going to be a much  more difficult certification exam than I was anticipating and things are going well.

And a note about the weather since apparently that's the trend these days. I think I'm the only person who isn't fussing over it. I've always liked winter unlike the rest of the world and I think this is the most normal winter Louisville's ever seen which would explain why the lifers don't quite like it. It's been cold since December and snows every couple of weeks. I'm pretty sure that's what winter does. Maybe being so cold and snowy will make me complain less when it's hot and humid in a few months?

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