Happy rainy Tuesday from the Northeast! 

I know that we’re in the midst of a serious drought and desperately need this rain but all this dreariness is downright depressing! I spent the entire morning thinking about working out — going to the gym, going for a run, doing some easy and quick plyometrics at home — then ended up doing absolutely nothing.  I blame the weather. Is it just me or do the clouds and rain make you want to just lounge inside in your snuggie with a hot chai latte and re-watch Buffy the Vampire Slayer on instant netflix…umm, right, me neither 🙂 

Does the weather ever affect your workout mood? 

I’m hoping I’ll recover and fit in some workout time this evening. In the meantime, some thoughts on carbs and its recent labeling as the “fat” food. I recently came across this article:

If Carbs Are So Bad for You, Why Are They So Good for Athletes?

The article was written by a physician, so it’s a pretty physiological description of what our bodies do with carbs, proteins and fats and how each of these micronutrients might affect long-endurance athletic activities like marathon running or terrain bicycling. The last paragraph of the article is a great summary of its take-away point:

If you have been feeling guilty about eating carbohydrates, or attempting to fight off advice about giving them up, look toward our athletes as justification for doing so. However, there is no “free lunch.” Your body will store them for you as an energy source but it is up to you to use them for that purpose.

Very much on point. This recent carb-bashing trend began in the mainstream during the 1990s, reaching its height during the Atkins obsession, and has continued on to some of today’s most popular eating lifestyles. But, for me at least, CARBS AREN’T BAD! The right kinds of carbs eaten at the right times in moderation are good for you. Carbs won’t wreck your body, and they won’t immediately turn into pounds of fat overnight. In excess, yes, carbs are bad. But, in excess, anything is bad for you. Carbs are the most accessible source of energy for our bodies when we exercise, so when we haven’t fueled up our glycogen stores properly, our ability to push our muscles and ourselves crashes to a halt. Also, can you imagine a life without pasta, breads, muffins, cookies??!

I’m a carb gal, through and through. Exhibit A: my egg and cheese on bagel breakfast — see below. It was glorious. 

While I think that it’s a good general rule to eat the right carbs in moderation, it’s an individual’s choice to restrict entire food groups if they feel it’ll make a difference in how their bodies feel. I’ve known from previous experience that carb restriction is just not for me. It doesn’t give me the energy I need for the day, and leaves me feeling weak when I should be feeling energized after a heart-pumping workout. I’ve been eating my carrot cake muffins before my hour-plus long workouts and it’s the perfect carby pre-workout snack — just enough to help me make it through at near-maximum effort. I think the difference between now and previously (when I was carb-restricting), is that now I’m more focused on how my body feels rather than how I think it looksPerhaps age does bring wisdom after all?

Also, eternally grateful if anyone out there wanted to get me this shirt: