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Trails and Travails

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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mark B on Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:39 am

@Tom H wrote:I kinda get the feeling that trail running in wooded hilly areas wouldn't work well with anal LHR training; would kind ruin the whole experience. *Sigh* Maybe next cycle . . .

Gee, Tom. That sounds eerily familiar....

Just remember how well slavish devotion served me last time, training for Eugene, and make sure to let yourself have some fun out there this summer. Yes, that means hitting a trail once in a while.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  mul21 on Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:53 am

Man, I'm pretty jealous of the trails you have access to. They're great to run on in general, but especially because of the hills. They're a super weak spot for me and I have just about nothing but pancake flatness around me.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Jun 21, 2011 1:06 pm

Tom - There's still time to give into the dark side! That 50-miler in early December is just north of the Golden Gate Bridge...

Jim - On the flip side, I envy the access to pancake flatness that many of you guys have. My "flat" course is a 1-mile loop around a man-made lake that still sports a couple 10' lumps as well as a 15-20' lump. Speedwork on that thing is guesswork, at best.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  mul21 on Tue Jun 21, 2011 1:13 pm

Honestly, my speed work is done nearly 100% on a track or treadmill. My tempo runs are almost always done on a mill just to eliminate the variables of heat and elevation to make sure I'm getting the intended benefit of the workout. But having those hills for GA or long runs would be nice. I guess the grass is always greener as they say!
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Tue Jun 21, 2011 4:27 pm

Jim - True. I guess if I REALLY wanted pancake flat, I could hit the treadmill, too. And you could ramp that incline up to 10% Wink But really, I'll take the lumps over a hot, humid gym any day.

Speaking of... Yeah, I've been training this week!

Yesterday was a little over an hour easy. Ended up being 7.65 miles. In the afternoon, a super easy 1:10 spin with the ladyfriend. Headwind for 5-6 miles on the way out, which meant a huge tailwind on the way back. I was spinning 23 without any effort for a few minutes. Kind of nice.

This morning: 7 w/ 4 @ tempo. That turned out to be 6:20 pace, which was what it was at the 2 mile point, so I didn't bleed any time. Good thing. But this run was hard. Hard enough to the point where I'm wondering how the hell I can even imagine pulling off 6 miles @ 6:10 (or 6:00, which was my A goal) on July 4. Rethinking that race a bit...

This afternoon will be a 2 hour ride. Easy/moderate with 1 threshold interval (the hill).
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  dot520 on Tue Jun 21, 2011 5:33 pm

Just getting back to your blog after spending time along the Santa ana river bed running down near Bolsa chica from my dad's place. Weather was perfect this past weekend. So...Auburn. My sister lives there. You'll get to enjoy a few more extremes. Colder and hotter. OC spoiled you!
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  ChasMcG on Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:00 pm

@Mike MacLellan wrote:Jim - True. I guess if I REALLY wanted pancake flat, I could hit the treadmill, too. And you could ramp that incline up to 10% Wink But really, I'll take the lumps over a hot, humid gym any day.

Speaking of... Yeah, I've been training this week!

Yesterday was a little over an hour easy. Ended up being 7.65 miles. In the afternoon, a super easy 1:10 spin with the ladyfriend. Headwind for 5-6 miles on the way out, which meant a huge tailwind on the way back. I was spinning 23 without any effort for a few minutes. Kind of nice.

This morning: 7 w/ 4 @ tempo. That turned out to be 6:20 pace, which was what it was at the 2 mile point, so I didn't bleed any time. Good thing. But this run was hard. Hard enough to the point where I'm wondering how the hell I can even imagine pulling off 6 miles @ 6:10 (or 6:00, which was my A goal) on July 4. Rethinking that race a bit...

This afternoon will be a 2 hour ride. Easy/moderate with 1 threshold interval (the hill).

DON'T RETHINK! If you have to back off, then choose to do so in the race not before.

Yeah you can call me your momma Very Happy
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Schuey on Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:16 pm

@Mike MacLellan wrote:This morning: 7 w/ 4 @ tempo. That turned out to be 6:20 pace, which was what it was at the 2 mile point, so I didn't bleed any time. Good thing. But this run was hard. Hard enough to the point where I'm wondering how the hell I can even imagine pulling off 6 miles @ 6:10 (or 6:00, which was my A goal) on July 4. Rethinking that race a bit...

Well let first by saying that Tempo runs are tough and I think you have to take those runs and any run with a little grain of salt sometimes. Sure if there is something that is always going on like lets say you continue to have problems with the 6:20 pace then maybe there is more to it but other then that somedays we are on and other days were not. You know how that goes there are times you go out for a easy run and a 7:xx pace feels easy as hell and then the next day 7:xx doesn't feel as easy. You have to take that same point of view when doing a tempo run.

Also I find that as I do the tempo run more I get more comfortable with it and the paces that come along with it. I remember this past fall after Chicago when I decided that I wanted to train and race a 10k in November that I did a tempo run which I wanted to do 4 miles @ my goal 10k pace of 5:55. Hell I only made it 3 miles and I was still off that pace by a 2-3 seconds. As time went on I got comfortable with the workout. My last key workout was doing which was 8 days before my 10k was doing 3x2 mile repeats at goal race pace and I nailed this workout and I know I was ready to take on my 10k. So stick with it.

I will add that I love the 10k distance but I also find it one of the toughest distance to race and it does take doing it some to get a feel on how to race it.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Jun 22, 2011 2:25 am

@dot520 wrote:Just getting back to your blog after spending time along the Santa ana river bed running down near Bolsa chica from my dad's place. Weather was perfect this past weekend. So...Auburn. My sister lives there. You'll get to enjoy a few more extremes. Colder and hotter. OC spoiled you!

Hiya Dot! Glad the weather worked out for you... I was worried the marine layer was going to stick around all day for you at the beach. June is clearly not our best month down here. Part of my 2nd marathon was on that river path. That was the loneliest stretch of the entire race.
I'm sort of excited for these extremes. I'm used to temperatures reaching 100 down here, but the possibility of some - okay, it's really rare - snowfall in the winter is enticing. I'm sure I'll hate the cold when I get in the bike, but I love it for running.
Does your sister run? I'd be happy to take all the running buddies I can get up there.

@ChasMcG wrote:

DON'T RETHINK! If you have to back off, then choose to do so in the race not before.

Yeah you can call me your momma Very Happy

Okay Momma, but I absolutely hatehatehate the idea that I won't PR and run a killer race. I know, that's just pride speaking, but still... Also, I have to take into account that I'm coming off a 15 hour week, going into another one, and was really fatigued even before today's run. I'm planning a solid week-long taper if I continue with this race, and I know my form will come around during that week. Still... Ugh.

---

Schuey - I really appreciate the words of wisdom, and I completely agree with you about how sometimes a pace feels easier than other times (way to go picking 7:xx, by the way, since that's actually the range that teeters back and forth for me). Like I said in response to Chas, I know that a taper will help. It's just that I was planning a hell of a lot more speed/tempo work leading into this race, and I haven't nailed any of those workouts yet. Maybe I was too ambitious in planning to ramp up my mileage again (62 last week, 67 this week...) and be packing on the tempo. Okay, I was DEFINITELY too ambitious in planning that. I've been sticking to what I like: long, steady, and within the aerobic zone.

It's just that it's tough for me to justify forking over 35 bucks (or whatever it is) for a tech shirt that I already have and a race that, right now, I don't think will be very impressive for myself. If my dad was running it again this year, I'd definitely do it, and I'd pace him in again like I did last year. But I'm pretty sure he's not.

Sigh. We'll see.

---

Two hour ride this afternoon. HR was exceptionally low for the effort I was putting out, which is more a result of fatigue than exponentially increasing fitness. Still, I managed to grab the KOM (according to strava.com) on the climb by almost 30 seconds. 1.91 miles at 5.7% in 9:44. According to my handy estimator at bikecalculator.com, that's 283 watts on average, or 2.02w/lb or 4.44w/kg. According to my lungs and legs, it's OUCH. Definitely had that I-want-to-die feeling at the top. But overall, it was a good ride.

I'm bordering on overtraining again. I can feel it. I'm moody, emotional, and tired. Just going to stick with the scheduled runs tomorrow and Thursday (1:30 and 1:00, respectively), take Friday completely off, and get in as much sleep as possible.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Randy E on Wed Jun 22, 2011 6:33 am

Hi Mike,
If you feel you are bordering on over training would it not be advisable to back off for a couple days? Good luck with your training. I will enjoy learning about ultras from you. So, don't over train so I can follow you.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Tom H on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:32 am

@Randy E wrote:Hi Mike,
If you feel you are bordering on over training would it not be advisable to back off for a couple days? Good luck with your training. I will enjoy learning about ultras from you. So, don't over train so I can follow you.

Hey Mike, Randy posted a link to a great article on Overreaching and Overtraining in the Body and Nutrition forum. Think you may find it interesting reading at this point.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Paula Sue on Wed Jun 22, 2011 12:31 pm

Loving reading about your trail runs, all the 'wild things' and especially training for those ultras. We have a few guys in our club that have taken up ultra running along with one chick that seems to really burn the courses. She seems to manage bringing home all kinds of gear she's won. Amazing...you ultra folks.

As for 'wild things', our club trail runs at least twice a week to increase endurance and speed for road races. We really don't have any wild things to worry about in our 'neck of the woods'. I do worry about copperheads. Most say we have nothing to worry about...but I don't trust 'em. Anything that looks like a snake-sized stick, I double take to make sure it's a stick.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Jun 22, 2011 1:18 pm

@Randy E wrote:Hi Mike,
If you feel you are bordering on over training would it not be advisable to back off for a couple days? Good luck with your training. I will enjoy learning about ultras from you. So, don't over train so I can follow you.

@Tom H wrote:
Hey Mike, Randy posted a link to a great article on Overreaching and Overtraining in the Body and Nutrition forum. Think you may find it interesting reading at this point.

Seems to be a consensus building here... Wink
I actually noticed that article when I got home last night (earlier than usual!... but then I stayed up until 1 or 2... oops) and had a chuckle at the timing of it being posted.
I'm hoping that Thursday/Friday being easy/off, respectively, will be enough of a back-off. If not, next week is a cut-back/mini-taper for the July 4 10k. So, relief is in sight.
After that, I'll be cutting back on the cycling a little bit, hoping to maintain about 13 hours total between running and the bike... As the summer progresses, that'll move more and more towards running with less cycling. In theory.

I think I'm partially allowing myself to play with the idea that there's really nothing I can't do until I'm told I can't do it. I remember when I was reading Born to Run, some of the ultrarunners profiled in the book never had a notion of "overtraining." They just ran when they wanted, didn't when they didn't, and improved. The problem isn't that I don't want to run/train - I really do - so I'm seeing how far I can push that envelope. Kind of ill-advised, I'm sure, but I've always been good at listening to my body when it really needs some time to recover, and I think I've been doing that a bit more lately.

@Paula Sue wrote:Loving reading about your trail runs, all the 'wild things' and especially training for those ultras. We have a few guys in our club that have taken up ultra running along with one chick that seems to really burn the courses. She seems to manage bringing home all kinds of gear she's won. Amazing...you ultra folks.

As for 'wild things', our club trail runs at least twice a week to increase endurance and speed for road races. We really don't have any wild things to worry about in our 'neck of the woods'. I do worry about copperheads. Most say we have nothing to worry about...but I don't trust 'em. Anything that looks like a snake-sized stick, I double take to make sure it's a stick.

I'm hoping I'll be one of those guys who excels on the trails. So far, I know I'm not. I don't have the descending skill yet, and I haven't been able to stifle my ego enough to power-walk any hills (as you're "supposed to" in the longer ultras). I'm sure I'll experiment with it and see what gives me the best results once I start tackling longer distances.

I, too, double take with most sticks. The times I don't, they're snakes.

---

In other news, I dreamed that I competed in (and won) a triathlon last night. It was a sufficiently stupid triathlon, but apparently I was first out of the pool and fastest bike. I remember the bike course being extremely technical, with a ton of awful corners, pedestrians/cyclists going the wrong way on the course, etc. Then there were a few miles of straight-and-fast. The running section was weird: run as far as you can on a treadmill in 10:55. Yes, 10:55. My treadmill kept breaking down, so I didn't "win" that portion. But I won overall.

Absurdity of the dream aside, I think the tri-bug is creeping in. I was hoping to hold it off until 2012 (I plan on doing a HIM late spring), but uh...

EDIT: Oh, and the prize for winning? A grafted tomato plant. Had some yellow (normal) flowers and some purple (huh?) ones. I forget what kinds of tomatoes it was supposed to grow.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mark B on Wed Jun 22, 2011 3:41 pm

If that wasn't a taper dream, I don't know what is.

At least I hope it was a good grafted tomato plant! Smile
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:05 pm

Definitely an exercise-related anxious dream... Come to think of it, my only poor performance in the entire dream was my run. So maybe this has to do with being nervous about the 10k. Or maybe I'm just nuts. Unfortunately, the tomato didn't have any fruit yet. The ones in my garden, however... Yum. Plum tree is ripening, as well. As is the zucchini/squash, cilantro, basil... Corn, bell peppers, and beans (bush/pole) will be here soon. Come to think of it, I haven't really spent much time out there lately, either. Haven't been home in days other than to eat and sleep.

I continue to beat my body into submission... Except this time, I say that in jest.
Let's recap the morning, shall we?

Like I said, I haven't been home much of late. I've been heading up to ladyfriend's house every day except Father's Day since... Last Friday. So I've been kind of living out of my car, packing grocery bags of food and clothes... My bike has been living in my car for almost a month now.

As some of you might remember - I think I talked about this in my other blog - I lost one of my shoes at a truck stop on the way to northern California last month. And I was furious about it. It really, really upset me, and it took most of my will power not to take it out on ladyfriend (who I was already pretty upset with for different reasons), as it fell out of her door when I was dropping her off with her cousin at said truck stop. But as sanity returned - after running 8 miles in my brother's too-small Nikes and getting 2 blisters that I still have today - I realized that it's just a shoe. The running shop in Davis had a pair in my size, on sale, and so I now have a new pair of shoes. No big deal, right?

That is, until I went out to my car this morning to get my sunglasses and a few other things and realized that my HR strap wasn't where I left it. So I started thinking. I took it off after cycling yesterday, immediately put it in the back of my car... But then later picked up ladyfriend's sister at the airport, and there was a mad rush as we stuffed her luggage in alongside my bike, during which most of my stuff in the trunk was moved around. Then when we got home, it was dark, luggage was pulled out of the trunk pretty quickly... And when I drove home last night, as I was leaving ladyfriend's house, I heard something under my tires as I made a 3-point turn. Mother. Fucker.

An already cranky morning became a furious morning. Logic told me the following: it's not really important to have the HR strap for running (whereas it's necessary for cycling, as that's how I determine my TSS [workload] to track my fatigue/fitness/etc. on WKO+), and even if I have to buy a new one, the stock strap is kind of shitty for cycling, since it's really prone to getting flapping jersey syndrome and giving me readings of 250+bpm if I'm going downhill. I've wanted the cloth one for a while, anyway.

Memory told me: this is TWICE that this has happened. And I wasn't even happy to be driving at all yesterday (ladyfriend lives 40 miles away), much less driving to the airport (for a grand total of over 3 hours of driving yesterday)...

So, this is how my run started. Angry. Emotional. Kind of stupid.

And then, 6:34 into it, I looked down to see my pace and saw "HR Zone: ---" and wanted to kick myself. Not because I didn't have the strap, but because that screen only shows up when the Garmin is in cycling mode. With my mad dash search for the strap, I forgot to change it back to running. I stopped, muttered a few words, and switched it to running. Then tried - unsuccessfully - to laugh at myself but was able to convince myself that before the run was over, none of this would matter.

Fortunately, I was right. The run turned out to be pretty kick ass. And I don't care about the HR strap. I'll buy a new one. Whatever. There are things that are much more important than money or inconvenience, such as loving the people you love. Needless to say, I apologized to ladyfriend for being snappy with her. She's gracious and understanding, though I still feel bad.

Now for the run. Scheduled was 1:30. I was hoping to dial into a good pace, and this morning I remembered an ~11 mile route with some decent lumps in it (I ran this once and posted the elevation chart on my last blog). This time, though, I would run it in reverse, so there was a steady descent for the first half, then the lumps to get me back home. I wanted to hit GA pace (mid 7's) for the first half, then take the hills at tempo effort with easy/GA recoveries between. Kind of like a fartlek, but a little more structured. Worked pretty well, I think. Effort rarely exceeded comfortably hard (only on the shorter sections did I really push it), and I walked into the door completely soaked in sweat (it's in the mid-70s with a "real feel" of mid-80s and 65% humidity).

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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  John Kilpatrick on Wed Jun 22, 2011 11:20 pm

@Mike MacLellan wrote:I think I'm partially allowing myself to play with the idea that there's really nothing I can't do until I'm told I can't do it. I remember when I was reading Born to Run, some of the ultrarunners profiled in the book never had a notion of "overtraining." They just ran when they wanted, didn't when they didn't, and improved. The problem isn't that I don't want to run/train - I really do - so I'm seeing how far I can push that envelope. Kind of ill-advised, I'm sure, but I've always been good at listening to my body when it really needs some time to recover, and I think I've been doing that a bit more lately.

You went through a great training cycle for your last marathon and seem to have found a great niche for yourself in the hills. Finding that fine line is hard, but sometimes I think that's half the fun of what we are blessed to be able to do. As for your dream - that was pretty entertaining! I can imagine coming out of T2 and jumping on a treadmill. Priceless! I was only kidding Seth when I posted a link on his webpage about doing a triathlon, but from what I've seen, you will do great in whatever you set your mind to.

Living out of your car? Your transition is almost complete and soon we will be calling you Caballo McBlanco lol! . Nothing like a good run to settle the MF moments!

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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  ChasMcG on Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:13 am

So if you're basically living out of your car and spending a lot of time with the ladyfriend, will she get a name now? Razz
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mark B on Thu Jun 23, 2011 12:38 am

It's karma, Mike. (Or should I say 'CAR-ma?')

Your vehicle knows you have cluttered your life with too many "things" and is trying to get through to you that possessions don't matter.

And, it seems, if it can't knock that lesson into your head, it'll just start destroying your possessions one at a time until you submit.

Good run, BTW.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Jun 23, 2011 1:20 am

@John Kilpatrick wrote:
You went through a great training cycle for your last marathon and seem to have found a great niche for yourself in the hills. Finding that fine line is hard, but sometimes I think that's half the fun of what we are blessed to be able to do. As for your dream - that was pretty entertaining! I can imagine coming out of T2 and jumping on a treadmill. Priceless! I was only kidding Seth when I posted a link on his webpage about doing a triathlon, but from what I've seen, you will do great in whatever you set your mind to.

Living out of your car? Your transition is almost complete and soon we will be calling you Caballo McBlanco lol! . Nothing like a good run to settle the MF moments!

I definitely agree with your usage of the word blessed here, John. I am truly fortunate to have the situation I have now, and I know it won't last forever. Maybe that's why I tend to want to cram with my training. I know that this freedom won't last forever.

Funny you mention Caballo Blanco - one of the guys that frequents the same Deaf events I do is a barefoot runner (doesn't log the miles that most of us here do, but he's really sold on the theory behind it) and I could swear he's the son of CB. He's even got some sort of connection to Mexico (I think he was born there?). Looks like CB, too.

That said, I've always wanted a running name since reading Born to Run. It's really silly, but I keep wondering what the Spanish word for gazelle is.

@ChasMcG wrote:So if you're basically living out of your car and spending a lot of time with the ladyfriend, will she get a name now? Razz

It's Aileen. Whew, that's a weight off my shoulders. Wink

@Mark B wrote:It's karma, Mike. (Or should I say 'CAR-ma?')

Your vehicle knows you have cluttered your life with too many "things" and is trying to get through to you that possessions don't matter.

And, it seems, if it can't knock that lesson into your head, it'll just start destroying your possessions one at a time until you submit.

Good run, BTW.

This is why I'm so stoked about moving north. I can purge my belongings. Even my apartment is way bigger than what I was looking for, and will look completely empty because of how little I plan on bringing, but location trumped minimalism, in this case. Still, why must my car (nice pun, by the way) destroy my running things? Let it get rid of my excesses, not my passions.

But you make a good point, and I'm very strongly evaluating the difference between want and need for my move to Auburn.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Jun 23, 2011 2:51 pm

Hi. I'm not crazy today. Wonderful what some rest will do.

7.35 easy miles today; 8:12 average. First mile was really creaky, with a pace around 8:45 average. And most of it was downhill, too. Finally got my legs to open up so I could knock out the rest of the run. Effort was easy/very easy.

---

Working on finalizing my training plan. It's coming along nicely. I'm planning on running 5 days/week minimum, throwing in some uptempo work every so often: "race pace," which will be a high-GA effort (~7:15-7:35 if the course was flat), and "H/MP," which will be in preparation for my next road marathon and a possible road half this fall (6:30-6:50). Peak week is around 13-14 hours, as of now.
Ambitious, yes, but the only thing that scares me about it are the back-to-back weekend longs. I know that those will come together as my training progresses, but just looking at a 3:00 on Sat and a 5:00(!!!) on Sun is daunting. And I'm kind of sandbagging that, too, since it "should" be a 4:00/5:00 combo. We'll see.

---

Also, I'm hereby declaring my intention to shape up my eating habits - namely, late-night binges - and stop trying to justify them with "I run a lot" or "I'll stop eating junk when I move north." Time for a bit of willpower. This is much easier said than done, particularly during the day, as the cravings don't really strike until it's late and my family has gone to bed.

I know part of it is emotionally charged, since nights that are really good or really bad tend to trigger my cravings the most. I think I've also used it as a means of unwinding since I started classes again... Actually, I know I have. I quickly took up the habit of making myself a White Russian (or 2 or 3) upon getting home, followed by an onslaught of whatever junk food I could find.

...This isn't really how I imagined talking about this, but I guess this is the way it's going to happen. There's a lot more to all of this, and it spans the spectrum from simply feeling lousy the next day to feeling guilty the next day to looking in the mirror and saying to myself, "Man, look at that stomach." I know that last part is crazy, especially since I'm pretty lean (six-pack lean), but I'm sure those of you who have similar body issues know what I'm talking about.

I don't really talk about this much, to anyone, save one person who's no longer involved in my life. So hopefully the half-story will suffice for now, as I'm hesitant to share, but equally assured that what I've said will be met with respect and support by everyone here. Bottom line: it's time to stop the cycle and find some balance.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Kenny B. on Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:16 pm

Hi. I'm not crazy today. Wonderful what some rest will do.

Who you kidding of course your crazy! Acceptance is the first step!

7.35 easy miles today; 8:12 average. First mile was really creaky, with a pace around 8:45 average. And most of it was downhill, too. Finally got my legs to open up so I could knock out the rest of the run. Effort was easy/very easy.

Looks like a good run and sometimes it takes me a few miles to get into a smooth groove.


---

Working on finalizing my training plan. It's coming along nicely. I'm planning on running 5 days/week minimum, throwing in some uptempo work every so often: "race pace," which will be a high-GA effort (~7:15-7:35 if the course was flat), and "H/MP," which will be in preparation for my next road marathon and a possible road half this fall (6:30-6:50). Peak week is around 13-14 hours, as of now.
Ambitious, yes, but the only thing that scares me about it are the back-to-back weekend longs. I know that those will come together as my training progresses, but just looking at a 3:00 on Sat and a 5:00(!!!) on Sun is daunting. And I'm kind of sandbagging that, too, since it "should" be a 4:00/5:00 combo. We'll see.

Sounds like you have plan coming together nicely. The back to back long runs sound daunting but then again so did 26.2 miles at one time.

---

Also, I'm hereby declaring my intention to shape up my eating habits - namely, late-night binges - and stop trying to justify them with "I run a lot" or "I'll stop eating junk when I move north." Time for a bit of willpower. This is much easier said than done, particularly during the day, as the cravings don't really strike until it's late and my family has gone to bed.

I tell myself and others just set it aside as junk food no longer serves your purpose.



I know part of it is emotionally charged, since nights that are really good or really bad tend to trigger my cravings the most. I think I've also used it as a means of unwinding since I started classes again... Actually, I know I have. I quickly took up the habit of making myself a White Russian (or 2 or 3) upon getting home, followed by an onslaught of whatever junk food I could find.

I will say ask yourself next time you reach for the White Russian and the junk food "What am I trying to escape from and is this going to serve my purpose towards who I want to be.?" IF the answer is yes then go for it. But if you find yourself answering no, then set it aside.

To create new patterns we have to create new purposes.

...This isn't really how I imagined talking about this, but I guess this is the way it's going to happen. There's a lot more to all of this, and it spans the spectrum from simply feeling lousy the next day to feeling guilty the next day to looking in the mirror and saying to myself, "Man, look at that stomach." I know that last part is crazy, especially since I'm pretty lean (six-pack lean), but I'm sure those of you who have similar body issues know what I'm talking about.

Guilty because you are doing things that you know don't serve your purpose. Sin is knowing full well who you want to be and taking actions of the opposite.


I don't really talk about this much, to anyone, save one person who's no longer involved in my life. So hopefully the half-story will suffice for now, as I'm hesitant to share, but equally assured that what I've said will be met with respect and support by everyone here. Bottom line: it's time to stop the cycle and find some balance.

(repeat)To create new patterns we have to create new purposes.

Thanks for sharing I got a lot out of it to help me on my journey. I can relate for sure.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Jun 23, 2011 4:05 pm

Kenny, you've articulated perfectly what I've been trying to figure out how to say to myself. One things stands out that I know will be crucial in all of this: figuring out exactly what that purpose is. Ultimately, I know it's physical (and mental) health. But sometimes it's hard to think about how much healthier I'll be 10, 20, 30 years down the line if I make (and keep) small changes now, and I second guess if it's "worth it." I suppose the immediate benefits of feeling physically better, as well as learning to unwind from the day in a more productive manner, will have to see me through. Thanks for the words of wisdom.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Neil Ruggiero on Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:27 pm

The single hardest thing to do nutrition wise is exactly the problem you're running in to. What I generally do is limit myself to one snack after dinner at most. Have dinner, decide on a max of one thing in good proportion that you can eat afterwards, and that's it. Good luck man!

I know I'll be doing this pretty diligently because I've got ~10 pounds I need to drop before I would say I'm at a good race weight.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Mike MacLellan on Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:08 pm

@Neil Ruggiero wrote:The single hardest thing to do nutrition wise is exactly the problem you're running in to. What I generally do is limit myself to one snack after dinner at most. Have dinner, decide on a max of one thing in good proportion that you can eat afterwards, and that's it. Good luck man!

I know I'll be doing this pretty diligently because I've got ~10 pounds I need to drop before I would say I'm at a good race weight.

Consider yourself lucky that you can even "allow" one snack. For me, it starts with one. The predetermined limit doesn't hold, after that. Here's to cold turkey.
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Re: Trails and Travails

Post  Julie on Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:21 pm

Hi Mike,

I'm sure many of us can relate to body/food issues, I had an eating disorder for too many years and it was not good and ruined more runs than anything, but anyway, I wanted to recommend a book called Intuitive Eating. Maybe not everyone is up for eating that way but it's basically getting in touch with your body's cues of hunger and fullness and eliminating binges because you know the food will always be there when you're hungry, no diets, no cold turkey anything. Most binges stem from deprivation, from everything I've read and experienced.

I know it can be a sensitive topic, but I just wanted to offer something that has helped me and I mean this in the nicest way so I hope it came across that way.
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