Tuesday, January 13, 2015

The Iron-Baby

Hey there!

How are things?

I've just been swimming and biking and running and eating and stretching and getting strong. Or at least trying. The great Swim Bike Mom wrote about the similarities between Ironman (9 months of training) and childbirth (9 months of ...uh..training?), you go into labor/race day and it's almost total misery especially towards the very end but then the moment of glory comes and you have a tiny (or huge) little (or big) baby (or medal) that makes you forget everything you just went through.

Moms....is that accurate? I hope so. Because I want to love my IronBaby!

A photo posted by Rennay Cooke Marshall (@rnay225) on

So I've started working with a coach and he is awesome! I'm on day 13 with him and so far so good! I feel like he really took the time to get to know me and my current fitness level and has written workouts that are challenging but still doable. I don't feel like I'm struggling but also don't feel like I'm doing nothing. In my head I've turned Ironman into a monster that requires exercising myself into oblivion but he has turned it into something much more manageable. Especially since I'm not truly training yet and just base building and establishing a routine.

I am loving "training" so far because 30 miles and 6 hours a week is pretty easy...ask me again in 6 months how that baby's doing ;)

Thursday, January 8, 2015

We Got the Beat

I love trivia. I'm not necessarily great at it but I love learning random bits of information and then regurgitating them in somewhat relevant situations.

Yesterday I got my Commit to Fit crew in on the action and asked them a little question about running just to test their skillz.
Trivia time!
Do you know what cadence is in reference to running? Your cadence is the number of times your foot hits the ground in a minute. So, what do studies say is the most efficient cadence for running? (Answers are for the number of times 1 foot hits the ground, double it for both feet)

I tend to think that everybody is exactly like me for some reason and spends their time reading about biomechanics, kinesiology and watching videos about running cadence. Apparently not. Wonder why...

Anyway, I was excited to drop a knowledge bomb since I so rarely get to do so and especially because it gave me an excuse to include a video of Meb.

And the answer is..... A! Many experts of biomechanics have determined that a cadence of 90 (per foot) or 180 strides per minute (3 strides per second) is best "to minimize overstriding, lessen impact forces on the legs, and maintain forward momentum" (via)... cadence can be hard to master so what I've done is built a playlist of songs that are all 180 beats per minute and run to the tempo. Luckily I'm an excellent dancer so finding the beat is no problem for me 

I googled 180 bpm songs yesterday before my short treadmill run and felt only a little nerdy until I realized how many people had exactly what I was looking for. Good to know I'm not alone. What's really fun is that there are hype, mellow, loud and quiet songs that all have the same tempo! Makes for a super fun and probably bi-polar run. Want to know my top ten songs? *Disclaimer...these are not entirely PG13...and I have a very broad range of musical tastes. Here you go, you're welcome.
  1. Damn it Feels Good to be a Gangsta - Geto Boys
  2. Livin' La Vida Loca - Ricky Martin
  3. Runnin' Down a Dream - Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
  4. Life is a Highway - Rascal Flatts
  5. Lose Yourself - Eminem
  6. Fighter - Christina Aguilera
  7. Lighters - Bad Meets Evil, Bruno Mars
  8. F**kin' Perfect - Pink
  9. Demons - Imagine Dragons
  10. Brave - Sara Bareilles
Oh yeah, and here's that video of Meb!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Radio Silence


I apologize if we experience some radio silence here coming up. I've had a few people ask me to write about my new coach, Ironman training and general life-isms but to be honest, I'm just not in a good place right now. My mind isn't where it needs to be to write fun and engaging posts and instead of trying and coming up with a bunch of awkward jokes at my own expense, I might just take the vow of silence. If you have nothing nice to say right?

I've written before about my struggles with depression and it's unfortunately not something that just goes away. You don't need to worry, I'm not in any danger, I'm not falling down the rabbit hole and in general I'm doing really well, but I'm not in my happy place and that's something I'll just have to accept for right now and know that it will improve.

One of my main goals when signing up for Ironman and partnering with the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance throughout my training was to show people that mental illness doesn't mean you can't do things and sure as hell doesn't mean you don't want to do things. But it does add an extra level of difficulty and I want to be totally honest about that. I do hear, "You're training for Ironman! Aren't you so excited???!!!!" and most days I am. But then I have days like today where it seems too great. It seems like not only can I not do it but that I don't deserve to. I don't deserve the elation that comes from accomplishing a goal so big.

I don't remember who said it, but I recently read a quote saying something like if you're depressed you're living in the past and if you're anxious you're living in the future. I have experience with both but do spend more time in the past. I have a hard time not feeling guilt. About everything. There are days I feel such intense guilt over what I've eaten or said throughout a day or week that I can't sleep. I feel this constant need to repent and apologize but when the apologies get irritating to those close to me, I feel the need to apologize more. It's a slippery slope but with the help of organizations like DBSA, my counselor and my family I've managed to stay out of the deep end.

I ask for your patience and understanding throughout this potentially tricky time. I'm working hard to re-evaluate my life and make time to take better care of myself. Please feel free to visit my giving site to learn more about my experience and motivation. If you feel like you may need help or just an ear to listen, check out the support group finder to find people near you. I am so lucky to have so many wonderful people in my life to help me keep things in perspective and hopefully soon everyone will be as lucky as I am.

Happy New Year all! Resolve to be kind :)

Friday, January 2, 2015

Best Tweets of December