Friday, October 17, 2008
A Moment of Self-indulgence
This post is total self-indulgence, for me, of course. Read at your own risk. I don't know if this ever happens to anyone else, but sometimes I just get these collection of things in my head, and I can't get them out until I write them down. This is one of those times. There is probably nothing in this post of any value for anyone else, but just consider this a brain purge so I can actually accomplish things next week. I started running a 2 3/4 mile route yesterday morning. My muscles were screaming at me when I was done. I did more walking than I wanted, but whatever. Today I ran it again and did much better. I think I probably walk less than a quarter mile during the whole route, though I have no way of knowing for sure. Again, whatever. It feels good, and it's not a competition against anyone but myself. I'm proud of myself, considering I started walking a 1 1/4 mile route in mid July and began running it a week later. I'm down three pants sizes and my business casual attire that I wear to work are pretty baggy. I even bought a new pair of jeans and gave a perfectly good pair in my old size to goodwill. Usually I get rid of clothes because they wear out or I outgrow them. I can't remember the last time I "outshrunk" something. I don't know how much weight I've lost since I don't own a scale and I'm not about to pay my nurse practitioner for weekly visits to help monitor my weight, especially since it was never about the weight for me. It was about my family. We'll be back to our program after this brief break... -------- If it wasn't for music, I don't think I could survive running. MP3 players were made for runners, I'm sure of it. Anyway, if I could only have 10 songs on my jogging list, right now it would be these, in no particular order (only one per artist): 1. Timebomb - Godsmack 2. Gettting Away with Murder - Papa Roach 3. Qwerty - Linkin Park 4. Grind - Alice in Chains 5. Pure Trauma - downset. 6. The Beautiful People - Marilyn Manson 7. Psycho - Puddle of Mudd 8. Head Like a Hole - Nine Inch Nails 9. Sabotage - Beastie Boys 10. Down With the Sickness - Disturbed (Most of these are Alternative Rock, with lots of guitar and bass. I mix in bunches of other songs: rap, rock ballads, classic rock, some R&B. But these are fixtures.) Now, back to our program. -------- After years of staying fairly stable in weight (I was still way overweight, but I wasn't really gaining anything new), I suddenly began putting on the pounds again. I wasn't any more sedintary than before, though I think I was eating more. Regardless, I found myself with considerably less energy. I couldn't keep up with Haley for long, I didn't have the energy to give to Kelsee in the evening, and I was really starting to feel it in my joints. When Cameron came to live with us in spring, things in our lives obviously went topsy turvy. Because of the stress, I was more tired then ever. I needed a boost, so I began cutting back on the food I ate. I didn't stop eating what I liked, I just ate less of it. If I wanted a greasy burger, I ate it. Knowing me, there was now way I was going to move to some diet. So portion control was my goal. I don't think I consciously began doing that, but when I had a series of five or six doctors appointments over the spring and summer, I began to notice a trend. After about the third visit, I realized my weight had gone down 3-5 pounds each time. Now when you are as heavy as I am, weight fluctuation isn't strange, but I decided to make a conscious effort to watch my food intake. By my last visit in late July or early August, shortly after I began running, I'd lost 35 pounds. I started running because I could tell that I would start to stabilize in my weight loss if all I did was portion control. At first running was excrutiating. My cardiovascular system sucked. I couldn't run very far without getting very winded. I think if I hadn't been playing basketball once a week, it would have been worse. Anyway, my muscles ached and my joints throbbed. I did a lot of walk-running, trying to increase the running distance and decrease the walking. I also realized that I was killing myself on this 1 1/4 mile route (which I'd actually bumped up to 1.6 miles). I had a big hill at the beginning, which meant that I was pretty wasted after I got to the top. I decided to choose a new route and increase the distance. Bingo! I was now running 2 miles without killing myself as much. I mean I still had bad running days and good running days, but my new route only had little hills, so I didn't have to expend as much energy at the beginning. Last week, I extended that route to 2 1/4 miles, but that didn't really test me more than the 2 miles. So I extended it to 2 3/4 miles yesterday. Yesterday, I hurt. Today I feel good. I'm shooting to get up to 3 miles, and then decrease my walking distances to as little as possible. Who knows? Maybe I'll run one of those 5K charity runs or something one day. The best part? I'm able to hang with Haley when we play (at least for longer; kids have boundless energy). I'm get less sleep (since I'm teaching three classes this semester), but I have more energy throughout the day. Which means I'm better company in the evening (I guess we'll let Kelsee be the judge of that). I think I'm happier, too. And physically I feel better. Now if only I can get rid of the other stressors in my life...Oh, well. C'est la vie.