Monday, June 27, 2016

Good for Her, Not For Me

Hello lovely people of the internet world, Emily and I are a few weeks into our training and have not yet given up, so I call that a success! A few more runs are under my belt with 18 weeks until the Marathon. This week has been dedicated to running for longer stretches without stopping, and to trying to get out of my head a little bit.

While running, I have been listening to the Audiobook of Amy Poehler Audiobook, Yes Please. It has been   tremendously helpful, because she gives me a lot to think about and ponder on while out of the road, including just imagining why Adam Scott is not my TV husband.

One quote from the book got me thinking for a good long while, and helped me to run consistently without mentally complaining for like a whole 15 minutes! (Yes, that is the current record)

“That is the motto women should constantly repeat over and over again. Good for her! Not for me.” 

"Betsy, what are some of my "Good for her! Not for me" situations that you've realized over the course of your 33 years of existence?" Well, great question! Here is the current list that would receive my "Good for her! Not for me" commentary relating to training and overall health stuff. 

"My body feels stronger now than it did when I was in my 20s" 

My body currently is revolting against me and the restart to running. It was just getting  comfortable on the couch and is hoping I'll just give up so it can go back if it gives me weird aches and pains in body parts that I don't think should have aches and pains. 

"I rarely think about food. I can go hours without eating!" 

Although I'm trying to change, I constantly think about food. Even the kid in my class last week selling weird candy bars and Sprees out of his backpack sometimes get my money! Actually, now that I think about it...what am I supporting with my donation? And where is he getting Sprees? Do they even sell them anymore?

"Oh, I don't really like red meat. Grilled chicken is my go-to dinner" 

Someone told me this recently, and I smiled and nodded.....imagining the meatballs I was eating the minute I arrived at my house. 

"You know what's a waste of time? Watching Reality Television: What trash!" 

I have tried numerous times to give up Bravo, knowing it's trashy..... but then Vanderpump Rules starts...or Southern Charm....or Real Housewives of New Jersey....and I'm back on the couch. 

"I really don't have any interest in drinking during the week" 
I went to a running club recently because I knew there would be beer at the end.  Sure I met some nice people, and ran on a Tuesday Night and felt great about joining like- minded runners..... but the beer! The beer was the BEST! 

"Fast food? DISGUSTING! I wouldn't touch it with a 10 feet pole" 

I am literally eating a Wendy's Chili as I type a snack........ 

"Running is my favorite form of relaxation" 
Books + Food + Whiskey= My favorite form of relaxation 

"I immediately feel better after I run" 

I immediately feel like I may DIE after I run...sure later I feel better and accomplished and wonderful, but right after, I praise the Good Lord that I survived and didn't pass out or puke in front of passing cars. 

These "Not for me" comments are not just complied from people who have actually said them out loud, but from people I imagine in my head. My imaginary critics that I have created over the years, who would be fitter/faster/happier than I currently am because they follow this kind of advice. I imagine them also as flat chested, blonde haired women, possibly of Icelandic decent...kind of like the woman from the Mighty Ducks 2. Not familiar? Here's a picture: 

Yup, the things I think this woman would say and do haunt me, and make me feel like I am doing something wrong. 

Hopefully with time, I can really buy this "Good for them, not for me" mentality. Maybe a nicer little acronym for it (GFTNFM? Nah, too many letters). For now, I'll just fake it till I make it, and keep on adding to my list with every comment I hear.

Anyone have anything to add to the GFTNFM list? 

Monday, June 13, 2016

The Hidden Benefits

Mondays, right?

Nothing more to be said, usually. We all roll out of bed with our Game of Thrones hangovers thinking "Why, old and new gods and lord of light and mother of dragons, why?"

More realistically, we THINK those questions, but due to the quicksand filled fishbowl that is our brain at the start of the week, it mostly comes out as "Hodor, Hodor Hodor Hodor, Hodor?" For me, this condition can last the entire day. By "day," I usually mean it's Wednesday and suddenly I'm somewhat aware of my surroundings.

I don't think I was conscious of just how sluggish my days had been feeling until, well, they weren't. Last week, I took up a small but harder-than-it-sounds-for-someone-like-me challenge: run 6 days in a row. Not run far or hard, just get outside in the morning and put in at least a mile from Saturday to Thursday.

The "getting out of bed" being the biggest challenge, of course

Waking up was shockingly easier than it had been over the last few months (during which the snooze button had become that ultimate bad-for-you best friend). Running was a tad harder, but the weather was kind and I easily got through the week, building a little more distance each day. I deliberately decided not to time myself or use MapMyRun. This week wasn't about speed or time improvement: it was purely to wake my body up after a long period of once-a-week walk/jogging.

Shockingly, it REALLY worked! It was about 2PM on Monday when it dawned on me that I had been awake all day. Not "awake" as in "not falling asleep under the soothing buzz of an office fluorescent light," but physically and mentally alert in a way that I hadn't realized that I'd been missing. When you work in an office environment, it's dangerously easy to let the immobility of the job make it feel okay to, well, feel immobile. I'd been walking to the water fountain rubbing my eyes as if it was normal, but this week, I learned it really didn't have to be.

I can't promise this elevated feeling will last forever, but for now, it's a great encouragement to tell me that I'm doing something right. When you don't lose weight easily or automatically graduate to adding another mile onto your run with confidence, it's hard to feel motivated to put so much effort into health. For me, this is a nice reminder that there are positive results not measured on a scale.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Oh look... another person!

Why hello there!  A new blogger is in our midst... who've thought!?  I'm sure you're all wondering, who is she?  Where did she come from?  Is she running this marathon too?  In short, I'm Erica, I'm from Ronkonkoma and hello no!  All due respect to Betsy and Emily, they have far more grit and determination than I do, but marathons are just not for this lady.  Although I do intend to begin training for a 5K sometime soon (I bought new sneakers and downloaded the app so that counts for something right?) I don't really foresee any marathons in my future.

So why am I here then?  I've been asking the same question which is why this post has taken so long.  I think that I was invited to join this lovely blog because much like my beautiful, amazing blog-mates I've struggled with my body almost my entire 33 year existence.  I remember being only 12 years old and already questioning the girth of my thighs in comparison to my friends!  It's been a long journey with this body and it's only over the past year and a half that I've learned how to take care of it and feel good about it and be proud of it!  Which is sheer insanity to think about.

I've done the diet thing before, my method of choice was Weight Watchers for a long time, primarily because my mom was a lifetime member so I had access to all of her accounts and point counters for free.  And it worked for me... twice.  I lost a good amount of weight and felt great!  And then I gained it back, and then I gained it back again and then gained more than I ever had before on top of that.  It was clearly time to do something different because this wasn't sticking.  My (new at the time) boss convinced me to join Jenny Craig with her.  It had worked for her previously so I figured it couldn't hurt!  And it didn't!  I've lost 60 pounds to date, but it wasn't really thanks to Jenny Craig and her food.  Although I am still eating their food 2-4 times a week (my goal is set for 15 more pounds) it is out of sheer convenience for those days I get home and don't feel like cooking.  Oddly enough, being on JC actually taught me how to eat properly.  It taught me portion control and using vegetables to fill my plate, all the same basic tenants of "healthy eating" we've all heard before, but for some reason on this plan it clicked for me.  It may not work for everyone but I'm grateful that it works for me.

So I guess that's primarily why I'm here, because to some degree I like to think I've beaten the curve.  I tackled the largest part of 'fitness' by taking a fairly large amount of pounds off my body.  But doesn't mean my hard work is over, like I said I have 15 pounds to goal, a number of yoga poses to master, 5Ks to run and then comes the ultimate challenge... maintaining it all.