February 2, 2014

8 Miles? Hell yes, 8 Miles!!!

Today I ran 8 miles.  That's the longest I've ran in a year or more.  I felt strong throughout and took one walking break at mile six.  I told myself I could take one at mile 5.5 but I tricked myself into going just a bit farther.  Brandon was great and stopped by after an hour to bring me some water which was needed because at a windy 70 degrees, I was really warm and thirsty by mile four.

Now I'm sitting here feeling like I conquered something significant.  I decided a few weeks ago that if I could get to this point I could run the half marathon on March 1.  With less than a month and only three weekends between then and now I believed that if I couldn't handle eight miles then I probably wasn't ready to train up to ten or eleven miles.  Well, now I've handled it and I even thrived while doing so.  My paces are consistent and while I won't win any awards for speed I should be able to finish in a respectable sub-three hour time.  I've been telling myself that I want to stay at 13 minute miles or less and for the past month all of my runs have been between 12:15 and 12:30 averages.  I want to give myself some cushion for things like bathroom and water stops.  Thirteen minute miles would have me coming into the finish at just over 170 minutes, 10 minutes shy of three hours.  12:30 splits have me coming in at 164 minutes (2:44).  So, the best time I could hope for is around 2 hours and 45 minutes and I have a 5 minute window to come in less than a 13 minute mile.  I think if I am really consistent with my shorter runs this month that I should be able to reach those goals.

Now, a confession.

Yesterday I went to my parents' house and while in their bathroom I was met with a scale.  At my home I've removed all scales from my line of sight.  Brandon has one in the library bathroom but I never use that bathroom.

I weighed myself.

And it wasn't what I hoped it would be.  It was less than before but not something I considered really worth all of this effort or a year long goal.  And I knew I needed to make myself accountable here in my little corner of the world but also I wanted to think about what it taught me.  So, I reaffirmed what I already knew: that the scale could set my soul soaring or could weight me like a brick in a lake.  I considered all of the work I'd done all month.  I thought about the running, the swimming, and the CrossFit.  At first it all felt for naught but then it caused me to re-evaluate some things.

I consider myself a pretty clean eater.  I eat a mostly Paleo diet.  I'm flexible and Brandon and I make regular indulgences.  But seeing the scale made me wonder if I really eat as clean as I think I do.  Between three or four nights this month of parties and also the 'occasional' ice cream in the evenings I need to rethink how many treats and celebrations I use as an opportunity to sabotage myself from my real goals.  I mean, I want to have sweets and indulgences, but this month, which was largely less indulgent than the month of December, still seemed to have a lot of reasons to eat ice cream and cake and chips and pizza.

So the lesson I am going to take from this is to stop deceiving myself with the myth of clean eating 'most of the time' and really take time to decide what events are worth eating cake or milkshakes or whatever and which are not and better to stick to healthy meals.  So, yes, I tripped up on my goal of going Scale Free 2014 but it taught me a lot about last month that I can apply to the rest of the year.


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