Win Some, Lose Some (but ending on a good note)

Good evening from a beautiful night in Chicago…warm with no humidity and lots of sunshine – perfect!

The weekend was definitely a mixed bag – some nice parts, some not so great. I’ll start with my dark and early wakeup call on Saturday – I had the alarm set for 4:15 so that I could make it to Grant Park in time for my volunteer call with the Girls on the Run event! I was so nervous that I’d oversleep that I kept waking up to check the clock, but ultimately got there right on time.

I was put on the dispatch team, which meant I stayed in the operations tent. Initially they were calling for rain and general gross-ness on Saturday, so I guess I should have been grateful that I was protected by the elements, but it turned out to be a lovely morning and I wished I’d been outside to actually see the event as it happened! Instead I heard a lot of cheering (which was super cute) and the National Anthem but not much else.

Nonetheless, I definitely want to volunteer for this again – it was a HUGE logistical undertaking and just really impressive to observe. Hopefully next time I’m assigned to “bus greeter duty” or “runner refreshment” – something where I’m either interacting with the girls or on the course. Sitting in the tent and just waiting for messages to come through on the radio – while important – wasn’t exactly stimulating!

At any rate, I finally took off around 10am and was super hungry and super tired. It’s so rare that I buy breakfast, but I didn’t feel like oatmeal or pancakes – I really wanted eggs and just something savory in general. But I did not want to cook and did not want to prolong my trip home. So I stopped at Dunkin Donuts and got an eggwhite flatbread sandwich and it was just perfect – exactly what I wanted. I ate it and went back to bed and finally got up a few hours later.

And…the day kind of got away from me at that point. I really don’t know why. I just started picking at things to eat (even though a. I barely had food in my home and b. was not the least bit hungry) and just kept going. I think it was a combination of feeling sort of disoriented from the lack of sleep and weird nap time, plus missing my normal morning workout (whether I do a class or run, it’s always in the morning on the weekends), and some general life stress. It wasn’t good.

I did leave the house to go grocery shopping, thinking the break might help me get back on track, but I kept eating once I got home and finally stopped in the late afternoon. I felt so gross and full. I sent a few emails and watched a little tv, and finally convinced myself to move my ass and go for a run. I’m so glad I did. It did not feel good when I first got started (my tummy is sensitive on its best day; to try to run after a binge was probably not my brightest idea), but I pushed through and ended up doing 7 miles, and actually feeling pretty good (still running with low heart rate training, which probably helped – it was more gentle than a typical run). By the time I got home it was 8pm or so, and unsurprisingly I wasn’t hungry for dinner. I had a glass of red wine to help me relax, some air popped popcorn, and some frozen kefir and called it a night. I thought I’d be really hungry when I woke up this morning but I definitely wasn’t – that’s how much food I consumed yesterday. I more or less stopped eating in the late afternoon and still wasn’t ready for anything today until I got home from the gym around noon.

Today, thankfully, was better in most ways. I went to my HIIT class at the gym and stayed around for yoga. That’s when things got not so great – I was doing a vinyasa and felt my neck start to tweak, and within seconds I knew I’d pulled something. I don’t know why I’m prone to this kind of thing, but it happens from time to time with me, always on the right side of my neck. Sometimes it’s not so bad, but as soon as it was happening this morning I knew it wasn’t good. I immediately stopped and tried to massage it a bit, but that didn’t really work, and I knew I should have just packed up but I felt like I could push through it. And I did, for awhile, but ultimately left once we started doing poses I just couldn’t handle.

My readers may recall that almost EXACTLY a year ago, I did the same thing, only that time the injury was aggravated by a sit-up at the gym and I went several days before seeing a doctor. This time I was smarter (I think) – as soon as I got home I went to my cabinet and found the leftover medicine from last year’s injury (prescribed on June 15, so I still had 10 days before hitting the expiration date!). I took a pill and used Icy Hot and a head press on my neck and just hoped for the best.

The medicine finally kicked in an hour or so later and it definitely worked – I was able to get through the rest of the day pretty much pain-free. I just took another dose so that I can sleep through the night, and we’ll see how I feel tomorrow morning. I definitely don’t want take anything unless I have to, but I also don’t want to be stubborn – if it hurts, I’m taking something.

Thankfully my eating was on track today, so I’m ending the day on a good note. After the medicine started working, I did my cooking for the week – I made a red curry shrimp meal and turkey meatballs with greens for my dinners, and made my first attempt at pad thai for my lunches – it looked totally legit, so hopefully when I have it tomorrow it’ll taste good too! I also made a strata with broccoli and mushrooms and cheese for my breakfast, and the aforementioned frozen kefir with blueberries for dessert. I’m still really trying to cut down on carbs and eat them mostly before mid-day, plus trying to bump up my protein. So we’ll see.

I randomly saw some article in Time that was written by Monica Seles, the tennis star and spokeswoman for binge eating disorder. I really do not believe that’s me – my binges are rare, especially anywhere near what I did yesterday – but I really identified with what she wrote. Basically she was saying how she was doing everything perfectly, listening to her coaches, staying in shape for her matches, but that the binging was this secret thing – I feel the same way. With fitness I’m right on the money, and when I’m eating in public I know my meals look good. It’s the behind the scenes stuff that is such a struggle.

What worked today was occupying myself with projects (yes, to cook I was around food for hours, but thankfully that didn’t make me go nuts), and when I finally finished up, I went to the beach for a little while. I just sat in the late afternoon sun for an hour and a half, listening to music and zoning out. I always marvel at just how little time it takes for the beach to make me feel at once calmer and reinvigorated. By the time I got home I was legitimately hungry for dinner. It’s funny – I know a lot of people get cranky when they’re super hungry, and I guess I do if it’s extreme – but for me, hunger is a triumph. It means I haven’t binged or overeaten or whatever you want to call it, and my body naturally needs a new round of food. I’m grateful when I feel hungry.

Anyway, that’s where we’re at. Hopefully I’m in good shape for the week – I do feel prepared, so we’ll see how it goes. And I REALLY hope this neck strain is short-lived and I can get back to my regular life pronto!

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend – it’s so nice to be feeling summertime sunshine and warmth!

Happy Global Running Day!

I had all manner of plans of getting out first thing this morning to catch a pre-work run, since I knew I wanted to take a conditioning class during lunch – and totally opted for sleep instead. 🙂 So of all the days to skip a run, I pick the ONE day dedicated to the sport! But I’m not going to sweat it – I did do my conditioning workout and it felt amazing, so I’m just going to call this Global Exercise Day and leave it at that! Meanwhile my legs are feeling shaky in a great way – it felt REALLY good to be using weights again!

Yesterday ended up being a rest day (kind of a long story), but on Monday I had a beautiful 5-mile run. I was worried it might feel a bit taxing since I did 10 on Saturday, but I felt awesome. I was so pumped up when I got home! Per my new experiment, I faithfully kept my heart rate low and consequently ran slowly, but not TOO slowly, so that’s good. I’m so curious to see if/how the heartrate-based training has any impact once my real NYC training begins.

Other than that, not much to report. On Saturday morning I’m volunteering with a Girls on the Run 5K and I just got off the event planning call. I will be showing up at Grant Park around 5am to help with dispatch duties. I think the call organizer said they’re expecting about 7,000 runners, half of them the actual girls who participate in the program, so needless to say there’s a lot of coordination that goes into these events. Sadly for the girls it’s supposed to be hot and rainy on Saturday morning, but I have a feeling they’ll rally! Me, I’ll be relying on coffee. 🙂

Not much else to report from here! I’m hoping (again) to run before work tomorrow morning so that I can do yoga during lunch – we’ll see how that goes!! Have a lovely evening!