Thursday, March 15, 2012

Whoa, baby!

"Whoa, baby!" is my youngest's favorite new saying.  And it cracks me up every time she says it.  Of course, when I laugh, it makes her say it even more.  This is one cycle I don't mind continuing.

A cycle that I NEED to break, however, is my nutrition.  Especially now that I'm signed up and committed to running a marathon, this is a key component that I need to figure out.  Throughout my entire life, I've struggled with my weight; yo-yoing back and forth between various weights, trying every diet and supplement available, wishing there was a magic weightloss formula that worked overnight.  Alas, there is no such thing.  Trust me; I've checked!  So, if I want to be a serious athlete and even just be able to complete this marathon in October, I have got to get this on track.  I've read countless books and talked to many people about this subject.  I can talk about it for hours...but when it comes down to living it, I'm not so well versed.

So, where do I go from here?  I think I've been pigging out for the last week for several different reasons, but since I'm a stress-eater, the biggest reason is probably just that: stress.  I know there are people out there who will say, "You're a stay-at-home mom now.  How could you possibly be stressed?"  Well, if you've never tried it, don't judge.  This has been one of the most challenging adjustments I've ever made.  Granted it has been the most rewarding.  My girls have been fantastic!  The stresses come when there are those not-so-good days.  You know, the ones where the kids don't sleep at all, and they're too tired to listen to you.  Nothing keeps them entertained, and all they want to do is have your undivided attention.  Those days seem to crop up more often than not.  And you know what?  Yoga doesn't help with those days.  I have to be "on" 24/7.  I can't take a personal day or call out sick.  And patience is not one of my strong suits.

Another stressor lately has been the fact that it's tax season.  My husband is a tax accountant.  Put two and two together, and you'll figure out that he's not around very often.  Last night he rolled into bed at 3 in the morning after leaving the house at 7:30 AM.  So, it's a delicate balance of wanting my husband to get his rest, but needing additional parenting support.  Only 4 more weeks!

It's time to put all of these things into perspective and get myself on track.  No more complaining.  It's time to take action and lose this additional weight so I'm prepared for this marathon.  I can do this, especially by October!  My courses of action include: (1) keeping a food log, and (2) keeping a training log.  In keeping a food log, this will help me to analyze several different things.  The first is what I'm eating.  This is important because if I'm not getting the right nutrients, my training will suffer.  Also, it will help me to figure out how I was feeling when I was eating.  Was I truly hungry?  Was I eating emotionally?

Simultaneously keeping a training log will help me to see what types of foods helped my training and which ones hindered it.  This will be huge during this extensive training period and will help me to avoid things that didn't help prior training.  I have a feeling that this will be a lot of trial-and-error, and someday I'll figure it all out.  But for now, practice makes perfect, and I know I can do this.  It's all scary, but...

"If your dreams don't scare you, they're not big enough."

And believe me, this one scares me!  But only by motivating me to push myself further than I ever thought possible.  We can all do more than we believe we can.  And I'm looking forward to this journey.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Um, I signed up for a MARATHON?

Mark this day down in history...I signed up for the Marine Corps Marathon (yes, the full 26.2 miles...of running...)!  What am I thinking?  I think I've completely lost it.  But, I also think you have to in some way in order to even contemplate attempting the full marathon.  You have to lose yourself to take on the intense training, the mental preparation, the nutrition, and the eventual satisfaction of completing said 26.2 miles (of running - seriously, what am I thinking?!?) in order to visualize the person you want to see crossing that finish line.  Am I ready?  Not today.  Ask me in 7 months when I'm at the start line.  Was I ready for my first half-marathon?  Nope.  Did I finish two already, have a third coming up and several races in between?  You betcha!  And I've loved every second of getting to those finish lines.

Now, being that I'm a stay-at-home mom, I have a little bit more time on my hands to do some additional training.  At least, I'm hoping that I will.  Looks like a treadmill will be in my very near future.  Ugh.  At least the weather is getting nicer, I have a double-jogging stroller, and I have friends that like to run, too.  Support is going to be HUGE!  On those days when I have long runs, I'm going to need that extra kick out of bed or onto the road.  Perhaps a running buddy; that way I can't bail on the run.  I have to be there because someone else is waiting for me.  Eh, maybe not... :)

So, now what?  The training plan I found doesn't have me starting until 20 weeks prior to race day.  I know I have a lot more to do even before that training starts.  First things first: I need to focus on completing my next half on March 31st and setting the PR (personal record) that I want.  I shaved off 7 minutes between the Rock 'n Roll half and the Philly half last year, so we'll see if I can do that again this time!  Yikes!  So that's the first thing I'm going to do.  After that, who knows.  If anyone has any tips, please send them my way!  I'm a sponge right now, trying to soak up any and all information I possibly can on this feat.  You can also feel free to tell me I'm crazy.  The more I hear that, the more motivated I'll be to remember that you do have to lose your mind a little to embark on a journey like this...but what a journey it's going to be!