Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Distance Running and Weight Loss

First, let me apologize for getting your hopes up if you ended up at my blog after googling "distance running and weight loss." Truth is, my experience has been that distance running alone does not lead to weight loss. It leads to increased hunger and a false sense of security, which if I'm not careful, results in weight gain rather than loss.

My connection between distance running and weight loss has more to do with how similar the journeys are. I was running 8 miles this past Sunday, admiring the beautiful trail, adorned with trees of the many colors of the changing leaves, the sounds of the Wissahickon as it babbled alongside me as I ran. I had a momentary tug to try to run faster, get a better overall time, which I quickly dismissed. I have learned over the years of distance running that if I run a pace that's too fast for me I will quickly get discouraged and either need to stop or at best, feel like I'm struggling through the entire run. If I get the pace right, I feel like I could run forever. And at the end of the run, I have the same sense of satisfaction from having completed the run. Moreover, I often find that my pace is almost exactly the same as it would have been if I'd pushed it harder.

I realized as I jogged along that my weight loss journey is very much the same. If I go at too fast a pace (3-4 pounds a week), I have an unrealistic expectation that I should be able to maintain that pace and then when I can't I get discouraged and stop. The whole point is to finish the journey - to get to my goal weight - and I'll get there faster overall if I just pick a reasonable pace that I can sustain and just keep going no matter what. Pick it up when I hit a downhill slope (maybe when I'm feeling high energy and there are no holidays or birthday parties to deal with) and hunker down and really focus when I'm facing an uphill climb (like this next couple of months).

Anyway, it's really helping me to feel good about my 1-2 pound a week weight loss. In fact, the more reasonable the pace of my weight loss, the more encouraged I become because I know it means I'm doing things in a healthy way that's sustainable for the long haul. I know that I will get there if I just keep putting one foot in front of the other.

Monday, October 3, 2011

No More Facebook...

I was working out with my sister and she told me that one of her friends had seen on Facebook that I was "struggling with my weight." I am a firm believer in the law of attraction and so have decided to things as a result of this new information being brought to my attention:

1) I'm not gonna link my blog to Facebook anymore, since people can take one or two posts out of context and come to conclusions that may not support my overall goal of manifesting my fabulous body (shown right).

2) I'm going to spend more, if not all, of my time on here talking about where I want to be and the parts of where I am that I'm happy about, rather than lamenting the parts of my current situation that frustrate me.

Last weekend was a sugary blur and I'm not going to lie - I LOVED it. I had tons of fun with the girls at Giggleberry Fair in Peddler's Village, at the Cape May Zoo, in Wildwood, and just hanging out at home playing Monopoly. That being said, I didn't feel physically as good as I do when I'm eating healthy so I'm glad to be back to eating healthy.

Onward, healthy soldiers!!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Running in the Rain

It's raining. I have a six-mile run on my training plan for today and it's raining. Not only is it raining, the trail where I love to do my long runs is bound to be muddy and gross. But I will run it.

There's no guarantee that race day will be sunny and dry, so that is reason enough to get my fanny out there and run. But even more than that, I have learned to stay my course regardless of whether the sun shines or the rain pours down. When I ran the Philadelphia Marathon in 2005, I trained in the cold, the wet, the sunny, even the dark if I had to in order to get my training runs in. As a result, when race day brought sun and unseasonably warm weather for a November morning, I was more than prepared and ran a strong 5:25, stopping only once to pee.

My weight loss journey is much like training for a marathon. No matter what, I will stay the course. Having a positive attitude and strong faith through will only make it easier to make healthy choices on the days when I wake up on the right side of the bed and will keep me committed on the days when I don't.

I just have to keep going, keep running, keep moving forward... rain or shine.