Sunday, January 30, 2011

Realizing Simple Concepts

As I was eating potato chips smothered in Alfredo sauce, blue cheese and scallions Saturday night I was wondering why I enjoyed them so much. If you think about it we are all taught growing up that we should eat to live NOT live to eat. Sometime over the last few weeks I forgot that simple concept.

Not only did I indulge in what was quite possibly the most unhealthy (but amazingly delicious) appetizer of all time, I also indulged in TV gluttony this weekend. I spent a few hours (understatement) watching MADE, I used to be fat and True Life on MTV. One episode of True Life impacted me greatly. It was True Life: I'm addicted to food. The young lady featured on this episode talked about her incessant craving for food. I could relate... If you have never suffered from an addiction it might be difficult to understand what it feels like to crave food when you are not even hungry, and I don't even think it is explainable. I was watching this poor girl continue to walk in the kitchen and put more food in her mouth while admitting she wasn't even hungry but couldn't fulfill her cravings. Ultimately the girl found a purpose in life and began making positive changes. She also discovered something very simple, yet profound; she recognized that there was more to life than food. It was almost as if she was filling a void by filling her body up with anything from her kitchen.

Today the United State Department of Agriculture released the new dietary guidelines for Americans. I have yet to read the guidelines but after attending a health summit last week I do know the guidelines encourage increasing your intake of fruit and vegetables in your diet. As a matter of fact I believe the rumor is you have to have five servings of fruits and veggies before your body even realizes any positive impact.

Here are some basic principles from the USDA press release:
  • Enjoy your food but eat less
  • Avoid oversize portions
  • Make half your plate fruits and veggies
  • Switch to fat free or 1% milk
  • Choose the food with lower sodium numbers
  • Drink water instead of sugary drinks


The culmination of all of these thoughts, moments, realizations have lead me to reevaluate why I make various food choices. While I continue to climb back to my running peak from a couple of weeks ago (6 days a week) I need to make sure what I put in my body will fuel me rather than weigh me down.

I would like to acknowledge that my Sunday run was terrible. I partly blame that on putting something in my body that weighed me down rather than fueled me up (but man was it delicious!!!).

Friday, January 21, 2011

If at first you don't succeed...


It is unusual for me to sit around and focus on my failures but this week for some reason failure has blinded me. I have taken 5 steps back. You heard me FIVE whole steps. I went to my standing Tuesday night meeting and learned that I had lost three lbs and you would think that would be all the motivation needed to stay on track, run my six days a week and go to the new toning class at the Y, but that was not the case.

Now I have a choice, let that destroy my spirit or move on.

One of my favorite authors, Paulo Coelho, has a blog with 10 second reads. I often take the 10 seconds for reading and a few hours contemplating what I read. This week he posted a piece about choosing the path. He sums up his blog by stating "The true path is chosen by our ability to love it, not suffer for it." What I figured out is that although I was blindsided by my lack of motivation for a week, my true love is in the path that makes me suffer a little. I know that a little suffering in the short term will make me stronger and healthier in the long term. I am officially moving on...

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Point of Marathons

Before I make a statement such as "I still don't get the point of football..." on facebook, I have to first make sure I have a FANTASTIC argument for running a marathon. I can always count on one of my dearest friends to keep me on my toes, which I absolutely appreciate.

Any time someone questions why I would even consider doing a marathon, or alluding to its pointlessness, you know I have to respond. Typically my response is something along the lines of, well who hasn't considered a marathon at some point? Haven't you? I just had a conversation with someone who told me they have NEVER considered doing a marathon. She followed that up with saying she never thought she could do a marathon because of her weight, which brought me back to my point; she has thought about doing a marathon, but instead thought about it from the other perspective. I think it pluses, she thinks in minuses.

I mean seriously, some people "consider' marathon runners crazy, some people "consider" marathon runners inspiring, other people "consider" marathon runners passionate, athletic, driven, motivated and the list goes on. I enjoy being considered any those descriptors.
I know there are negative descriptors out there for marathons and runners, but I will not even go there since running can be a mind game played with yourself. I like to think in those pluses I mentioned above...

So, as far as I see it the point of doing a marathon is that it encourage a healthy lifestyle while it appears to me that football in some cases encourages drunkenness and fattening snacks. So you choose... I know that I choose marathons but I will also give in and sit on my couch with a few lite beers and a tray of veggies to cheer on the Bears next Sunday. Why would I do that since I don't get the point of football? My response is that I value my relationships as much as I value my health. BEAR DOWN!!! (I think that is what they say in my hometown)
*I admit this is a quick rambling that may not make all that much sense to my valued and appreciated readers, BUT it certainly helped me sort out some of my thoughts on my next attainable goal :)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Staying on Track

As I was running today, and having a very hard time of it, I remembered my list. You know the one; it was referenced in my blog last week. Or should I say it was the topic of my blog last week. 100 things I am going to do in 2011. So far somewhat good.

First I want to mention that I have challenged myself to use more positive language. One of my colleagues was telling me that people who swear a lot do so because they have a limited vocabulary. I have promised myself that I would swear less this year so as not to limit my vocabulary. In doing so I have remembered some of the essential guidelines for using language to empower myself to do said things. I am no longer using the word should because as we all know, often times when we say should we really mean we aren't going to do it. Think about it... Have you ever caught yourself saying you should do something when you know in your heart of hearts you aren't going to do it? That is how I historically lived my life. I would say I should run today, while I'm thinking in the back of my mind that it is really OK if I don't do it because I still have 10 weeks of training. The reality is the ultimate goal may not actually just be the race you are doing but instead a more healthy lifestyle. Who are you hurting when you 'should' do something but you don't? The only person who is going to know and feel the negative impact is yourself.

So what does all of this rambling truly mean? It means I am writing my blog because I know it helps me, and I went running today because my ultimate goal is not to finish a marathon but instead instill a healthy lifestyle on all of those around me AND to improve and maintain my own health. I am going to run tomorrow during the snow storm because I can then consider myself 'hard core' and because I promised myself I would run six days a week. Cheers to 2011!!!

Monday, January 3, 2011

100 Things I will do in 2011:

I do not do New Years resolutions; I instead set goals and stick to those goals. I only make that statement because I have a number of goals for myself and I try and update that list on an annual basis. The list helps guide my life and I get so much satisfaction when I can tick items off the list. Feel free to read through my an abridged version of "100 things I will do in 2011" and join me or support me along the way. I will blog about my accomplishments throughout the year. As always you will notice these goals are meant to keep me off the couch and will help me with my overall goal of health and happiness:

1) Write in my blog once a week

2) Run two half marathons

3) Run a full marathon

5) Ride a century

6) Do a triathlon

7) Do my dishes before I go to bed

8) Learn to play puff the magic dragon on my guitar

9) Participate in the warrior dash

10) Zip line in Hocking Hills

11) Run six days a week

12) Start lifting weights

13) Get an allergy test

14) Learn how to tune my bike

15) Pin my socks together

As I blog weekly you will learn more about my 100 goals. I would love it if you joined me along the way!

I am leaving you with wise words from a woman I met a couple of weeks ago: "If I knew I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of my body."