So, I haven’t blogged here in a bit over 2 months. I apologize for not providing you with an update about what I was doing / where I was / if I was still alive. I have just had to sort through some things in my personal life. I entered a quarter-life crisis and just had to figure my ish out. That confusion and uncertainty bled into all facets of my life, including my blog. I was unsure of what I wanted to achieve with my blog, surely a microcosm of and metaphor for what I was going through in my larger life. I also felt that I was trying to project an upbeat persona, when in actuality, I was feeling quite the opposite. I didn’t want to be disingenuous by not sharing that here and acting as if everything were normal and happy and all that good stuff. I also feel like a lot of fitness/healthy living/lifestyle blog readers aren’t very interested in reading about Debbie Downers’ struggles. There were times that, as someone who loves writing, I wanted to write about something here but didn’t because it was probably not something you wanted to read about and something that might defy easy categorization.
While I’m still working through things and sorting things out as best as I can, I’ve come back to this blog now because I really did start to yearn for an outlet to write. I also enjoyed having a readily available audience, even if that is only an audience of three 🙂 I missed it. I’ve realized that this blog does not have to be perfect, that I began this blog as a genuine reflection of my feelings, a place to share my life, struggles and achievements, and that censoring my experiences or true feelings is the worst things I could do for myself and my readers. For now, I’ve decided that the blog won’t function solely as a food or lifestyle blog, which I felt pigeon-holed me a bit. From now on, my posts might be a bit more varied than what I’d been doing than last year. That effectively means my moniker “Yep I Ate That” is virtually obsolete. Ha, oh wells, that’s the way the cookie crumbles.
Moving on, one thing I have figured out, is that I want to get back into running. As I’ve said, my life remains very much in flux. I’m still kinda in that quarter-life crisis phase. I am not sure where I’ll be living or working in these next few months, and that is slightly terrifying for someone like me who thrives in structured environments. Running, however, is one of the few things that I can control that offers me a rewarding feeling of accomplishment while I’m figuring out all of my other stuff. One thing I’m trying to do to get out of this funk is forcing myself to run off that sideline and into the game. So, I’m re-dedicating myself to running beginning.
My consistent running stint occurred about a year and a half ago, and lasted only a few months. Before that particular stint, I’d used to run in a nearby park when the weather was nice, only leisurely and never for time or pace. I’d never really thought that I could be a runner. It was a fun thing to do occasionally that also managed to keep the pounds off.
However, two summers ago, I began running with more of a purpose. I started to challenge myself to get faster and increase mileage as much as I could. The endorphins! The feelings of accomplishment! It was such a thrill, and I progressively ran more and more. I fell in love with running hard and fast. But as with most intense, passionate loves, this one did not last long. I was not smart about training and giving my body proper rest. I developed a hip injury that eventually sidelined me for a few months. Even though I felt better after a few months, I didn’t really pick up running again. Soon, that few months turned into a year, and now that year runs into the present. I haven’t really picked it up again since that glorious few-months long stint over a year ago.
In reality, and especially relative to others, I realize that I actually never got that fast during this period. But comparing my running capacity at the end of the stint to what I had been able to do before (huffing along for several short city blocks before having to stop), my progression was impressive for someone who never thought they could become a runner. Running was so therapeutic; amidst a crazy work and school schedule, I managed to drown out the mental white noise and embrace the solitude of it all. At the end of my runs, after all that quiet thinking, I experienced a euphoria that was really incomparable. It’s a kind of high that I have yet to experience again. And, I’m not going to lie…I did lose maybe 15 pounds during that running period, which was not my original intention but definitely a bonus. During these past winter months, I’ve gained some weight and I can’t say that getting back into the running game isn’t at least partially motivated by wanting to shed some of these extra pounds.
So, I’m now re-committing myself to running. To lose those extra pounds but more importantly to center my life again. This time, I am going to be smarter about times, distance, training and fueling my body. As a novice runner, I shouldn’t have been running 8 miles on back to back days as fast as I could. Not smart running. I know my body better now than I did then. Now I know where to access good running information.
I work best with solid, quantifiable goals. For this endeavor, I am going to sign up for a race in late April. My goal is simply to finish. It’s a 15k, so not a terribly long distance but it’s definitely not a cakewalk either. I am going to follow a simple training plan for novice runners. This spring, I’m working on several additional things to get my life in order, but as I said, things are in major flux over here. Fitness has always been a point of stability for me, so I hope running will step into that role during this time. Fun, fun, fun times. The major caveat is that because I am not entirely certain of my schedule for this upcoming April (and if I move, not sure I’d be able to make it back for the race weekend) there is a chance that I won’t actually be able to run the race but I’ll deal with that if the time comes!
If you’ve read through all of my ramblings to get to this sentence, virtual hugs to you. Thanks for listening and please stay tuned 🙂