Adjusted Reality

“Reality can be beaten with enough imagination.” – Mark Twain

Month: May 2017 Page 1 of 2


Ironman blues have been a thing.  I hate to keep whining about it but this is my reality.  I think I’m starting to see the light but this last week I was definitely still in the tunnel.

Volunteering means: an excuse to ride bikes downtown, get a picture with the hi how are you frog, sport our #imtexas hats, and ask anyone with similar finisher gear “why the hell are you racing already”?

I just did not expect not to want a nice long downtime.  I really didn’t expect my brain to immediately want to start training again.  Of course, I knew that was body suicide (and a recipe for impending burnout), but I spent the last month trying to poke at being an athlete again.  I rode my bike for 90 minutes 4 days later.  I’ve swam in open water every week.  I even tried to do a (super short) splash and dash which was a huge, catastrophic failure.

You’d think vacation would be an excuse to relax, right?  Not us.  7 hours combined of diving and snorkeling.  Roatan was kind of chill but Costa Maya was mostly swimming in rough waters and Cozumel was drift diving which meant fighting some massive current and fighting for every picture.  We did 3 days on the stationary bike totaling almost 2 hours.  We were even talking about what training we wanted to do on the way home.

This last week finally, our bodies said STAHHHHP.  My back took the entire week to feel better, and Zliten got a righteous cold.  So, we took a full week off touching no swim bike or run (Saturday the 20th through Friday the 26th).  My triathlon this week has been sleep/work/read (in bed).  It felt really good to let my body crash after weeks of trying not to, and I think it’s a necessary part of the process.  However, it’s so humbling how much rest I actually need.

I finally rode my bike this weekend a bit, with the seriousness of a thousand comedians.  I really really really want to go swim around the lake this week but probably more because it’s warm vs wanting to really train.  I’m thinking that sometime within the next week or so I’ll make my running debut of a few miles slightly above walking pace, but not just yet.  And that’s where I am.   I feel that endurance deep inside there but it’s definitely not ready to come out and play yet.  And there’s no use in rushing it.

I will honestly say that this is the worst part of Ironman.  I may have gotten frustrated with some workouts and felt overwhelmed at times during training and worried about every little thing during taper but the waiting for your body to be your own again after the race is JUST MADDENING.  The waiting is the hardest part.  But my body gave me a great season, ending with a successful Ironman finish.  It did all I could have asked for.  So patient I will be.

Movement goals last week:

  • Unfuck my back – Check.  It’s at about 90%.  I think some of the muscles are still tight because it went so long without being properly adjusted but it’s better every day.
  • Do whatever feels good – Check. Nothing until the weekend and then some biking as transportation.  Got it.
  • 10k steps per day – Check minus one day and I more than made up for it the next day.

Movement goals this week:

Productive wakeups.  15 mins of yoga/stretching or easy bodyweight work before work every day this week.  I think I’m ready for this.

10k steps per day minimum.  Walks have been nice!

More if I’m ready… Optional, if I feel up to it: bike commuting as much as possible (since it goes from 4 to 10+ miles in a month when we move).  Bikes with friends.  Swimming in the lake.  But ONLY if my brain and body both agree.  If I need another week of sloth off, I’ll take it.

It was a 4-b weekend, bikes, burgers, brussels, and brats (and chicken and cauli-taters).

The internet and other reading has the universe sending me not-so-subtle hints about the need to refocus on diet.  My stasis weight the last two years or so has been about 10-15 lbs higher than it was previously.  The last two years I’ve focused on diet quality less, and during the IM training cycle, it was kind of a food orgy because my appetite/caloric need kind of scared me and it was overwhelming to try to beat it back without using junk food.

The good thing about the indefinite break from focusing on race performance is that I can really focus on my diet quality.  When I was maintaining a lower weight, I was much more focused on the quality of the food I was putting in my mouth.  Fast food was not even a consideration.  Something other than sprouted grain bread or corn/whole wheat tortillas was a splurge.  My carbs were more natural sources like corn and potatoes.  Desert was a few times a month, max.  I rationed my alcohol a little better and avoided beer like the plague.  I think this summer will be me working on getting back to there.

I spent the greater part of about 10 months really focused on my carb intake – i.e. trying to get it high enough to sustain my workouts.  Now that I’m not regularly doing multi-hour training sessions on back to back days, I don’t need a lot of that quick-burning fuel.  Some sources argue that to do the long distance stuff you don’t need a whole lot of that at all, but that’s another topic for another day.  While I think avoiding carbs is not the answer unless you’re doing it for a specific short term reason, I have been neglecting good quality stuff that makes my body happy.

It’s hard to do that when you come home from a long workout and you need FOOD NOW.  It’s hard to do that when you have precious little time to do food prep and all of a sudden you need to handle like 2-3k calories per day vs 1200-1500.  It’s hard when your stomach is telling you NO I’m done with fiber but I still need carbs.  The last one is the toughest and I’ll definitely have to figure out a better fueling situation next time my hours start ramping up.

I have a tally of this week:

  • Weight: 189.0 lbs
  • Avg cal per day: 1715 calories
  • Avg deficit per day: -803 calories
  • Macros: 54g fat, 176g carbs, 90g protein, 22g fiber

Last week’s consumption goals:

  • Track food/weight and try to stay at least 500 under my calorie burn overall – CHECK.
  • Water Water Water – Check.
  • Detox a little – Check.

This week’s consumption goals:

Continue with Week one goals.  Track and maintain a deficit.  Water.  Try to keep the alcohol consumption to reasonable levels.

Fruits and veggies.  Since my appetite is back to normal human levels, I don’t need much beyond my 3 normal meals.  The VAST majority of my snacks should be unrefined plants.  I should be able to track what I consider 5 servings (which is probably closer to what the FDA would consider 10 servings – considering my lunch had at least a serving of veggies in my homemade soup and I had about 3 cups of salad on the side) per day.  Fruit with breakfast and as an afternoon snack.  Veggies with lunch and dinner and also as a snack.  This should help up my fiber a little.

Protein.  This shouldn’t be so low.  My goal is to make sure I get my allotted 100g protein per day.

It was such a chill week, the only other picture I have to present to you is me, not looking half bad.  Makeup, hair not completely crazy, a smile instead of crazy eyes.  I was twenty-six seconds away from pajamas, so, don’t get *too* excited.

I love long weekends.  I think if I could have three days off per week, I could really get my life together.  Too bad it only happens a few times a year. Anyhoo, the combination of the lack of training we’re doing plus the three day weekend made it feel amazingly long and wonderful.

We got to stay up too late one night.  We got to spend a lot of time relaxing in bed reading, watching movies, and getting lots of sleep.  We volunteered for the Cap Tex Tri.  We rode bikes three times.  We went on walks.  We cooked a bunch of delicious food.  We helped some friends with a moving project and had lunch. We got some errands done, made some progress on the office, hung some pictures, and did some other chores around the house without it feeling like it took up our precious little free time.  While we lamented this was the first Memorial Day in a while without a big ol’ cookout anywhere, we were able to do a lot because of the lack of that.

Last Week Life Goals:

  • Sleeeeeep.  So CHECK.  I averaged 9 hours per night (and probably more because it didn’t count my 3 hour nap on Saturday).  Apparently I needed that more than I thought.
  • Non-fiction reading. Check (however, I can only read a real paper book for so long when Zliten was like sleeeeeeeeep now, so I did a chapter per day before I turned out the light and read fiction books because I don’t have anything non-fiction loaded up there).
  • The office.  Check. We have two usable computers and desks now, the floor is mostly uncovered, and the table is moved from the guest room.  There’s still a lot more to do but STAGE 1: COMPLETE

This week’s life goals:

Moar books. The obvious thing after writing above – find a non-fiction book about business or marketing or badassery or something I want to learn about and buy it for my kindle.  Something I don’t feel like I need to maintain as a reference book but would be a good read.  Also, continue to work through the big yellow book, trying for a chapter a day.

Hostess without the mostess.  We’re hosting a game night potluck with our friends on Saturday.  My goal for this is to not overdo it like I like to do.  We’ve promised a (sort of) clean house, pork tacos, a veggie tray, and that’s it.  I don’t need to buy a bunch of alcohol or make 20 appetizers or decorate or do anything super fancy.  I’d rather get in the habit of hosting people at my house again without stressing about things being perfect and pintrest-y.

Seat-u-ation.  The next step for the office is to get us some chairs.  Mine got donated last year because it was about 15 years old, broken, and really dirty.  Zliten’s is *adequate* but not for multi-hour sessions.  We found the chairs we want at Office Depot for 280$ each.  This week we want to hit the discount store to see if we can find something cheaper (if not, bite the bullet and spend the money).

And that’s a lot of words about a short week.  So, let’s get on it, shall we?

Bikes to nowhere, adventure snorkeling, and local beers – Liberty of the Seas

I do love cruises, but they have a history of doing bad things to me.

In 2011, my back went out and I got a nasty cold.  In 2013, I injured my knee and I got a cold the last day.  2014 and 15 I did it to myself with a half marathon and marathon the day before the cruise. 2016 my body was totally healthy, but I discovered over spotty wifi in Belize that my company had done layoffs that day.  While I look forward to these vacations, I also am always wondering what bad thing is going to happen.  While it was annoying to have a cranky back through most of the vacation, it was definitely a MILD annoyance compared to some years…

Sunday’s drive was fairly uneventful minus a 45 minute stallout in traffic around Houston.  We got to the pier, everything seemed chill, we got in a short line to get on board and… technical difficulties.  Their internet was out so the security photos weren’t being sent up so things were taking a long time.  We got put in a line and then sent back to sit down and then another line and then as we got up to the end we were told to sit down again.  We’re on about hour 7 of not eating anything so we’re cranky and we decided we weren’t getting displaced in line again so we just stood there.  And stood there.  With heavy backpacks on… (foreshadowing…).

Finally we got on board and lunch (food was glorious) and went to the mandatory boat drill and since we were signed up for late dinner this time, we had a few hours to kill.  I asked Zliten what he wanted to do and he really wanted to hit the gym, so we rode bikes for 30 mins and stretched.

Then, we watched the boat sail away from the hot tub with some frozen mojitos.  This really started vacation.

We drank some wine and got dressed up for dinner.  Since it’s the same boat, around the same time of year, it seemed like the menu for the week was pretty much the same.  Last year, I had seafood spaghetti with oysters, scallops, and shrimp.  Guess what I had this year?

We called it an early night and retired back to the room to read books and sleeeeep.

Monday was our first day at sea.  We slept until we woke up without an alarm and still hit breakfast.  I kept these small and had a little corn beef hash (my cruise treat), some fruit, and a few potatoes.

We met my parents for cards and played a few rounds.  Then, we did another 35 mins on the bike and stretched before we got hungry for lunch.

The afternoon was for the pool, and a few drinks, and more lounging until we had to get gussied up for formal dinner.  We clean up alright.

After dinner, we headed up to the disco and spent the evening talking to random people and drinking a lot of Crown Royal on the rocks before some late night snacks and bed.

Tuesday was sort of a repeat of Monday, except a little less sleep and a weee bit of hangover that went away rapidly and my back felt SUPER out of place.  Fancy that, running around all evening in heels + lugging around a heavy backpack for hours + cruise chairs/beds not being super comfortable didn’t do me a world of good.

Anyhoo, we were up in time for a quickie breakfast of relatively the same thing.  Cards with the ‘rents.  Bike and stretch (and stretch and stretch and roll).  Lunch.  Pool.  Pretty sure there was a nap in there somewhere.  Dinner – one of my favorites from last year, crab cakes and cilantro cod.  Sleep early because the next day we arrived at our first destination!

Wednesday is when vacation really, for real starts for me because it’s time to go hit the beach for a few days instead of just look at it, but also it’s half over.  Boo.

Started out with a *slightly* larger breakfast since we were playing in the water all day.  We rode past this sweet lighthouse on the way to Tabatya Beach and then all of a sudden we were there.  This place was amazing, and I’m not even showing you the underwater photos yet.

We spent over four hours snorkeling the huge mass of reef (reefs?) around the beach. The last time we were in Hawaii, on one of those hawaii boat charters, we’d spent a whopping two full days in the water.

I’ll do a play by play of all the fish pictures once I’ve processed them, but for now, you get THIS happy fish after those four hours, what sounds like a totally mundane but actually super amazing lunch of bbq chicken, rice and beans, and coleslaw.  And a mojito.

We hit a bar right at the port on the way back to have a few more drinks off the ship (read: WAYYYY less expensive) and enjoyed the view before we hurried back to play cards with the ‘rents.

This is my dinner face (and wearing one of my favorite necklaces to boot), but I didn’t stay up much after that.  I’d say I’m old but I’m really just a fish – playing in the water is ALWAYS going to win out over just about anything else ever and I had two more days of that planned.

Thursday was a little nerve-wracking.  This was the day that got ruined last year by work news.  However, it was a different port and we had different plans, so I was excited to try something new.  Speaking of something new, I found stir fried veggies at breakfast.  It sounded like an odd thing to eat in the AM but they were actually really frikkin’ yummy so maybe I’ll start making breakfast stir fries… hmmm.

We taxi’d out to a beach called Yaya.  Apparently you needed reservations, so a nice older gentleman escorted us to a different area called Carribean Life.  There were no lockers and we were a little nervous about leaving our stuff there, but hey, stuff can be replaced and adventures can’t, so off we went into the water.

This was not the most ideal place to snorkel.  We found some reef in the two miles-ish we swam, and saw some cool stuff like a giant pod of squid.  However, we spent maybe 20 minutes snorkeling and the rest of the time swimming (transporting ourselves).  Sometimes fighting some decent current.  Sometimes hurrying through boat lanes to make sure we didn’t get squished.  Adventure snorkeling!

After that, we were ready for refueling.  Local beer (Corona, LOL).  Pico.  Guac.  Chips.  Chicken tacos.  It was all really great and fresh.  There were ladies offering 20$ massages on the beach and with my back all sore, I took advantage of this.  She worked on me for an hour and twenty minutes.  I was super relaxed by the end.  And… I can say I got topless (very carefully without ACTUALLY exposing myself) on a beach in Costa Maya Mexico!

There was a swim up bar in a giant pool at the port, and I made Zliten get in with me for about 10 minutes.  Because there was a pool and I was there.  Next time, I’ll definitely take more advantage of it.

We played cards around 5:30 and then went kinda casual for dinner and after another sun baked, salt-crusted, fishy type day, we hit the hay pretty quick.

Friday was diving day!  Wheee!  We skipped breakfast so we could sleep in and still make our diving appointment.

We ended up the only two people signed up, so we had a private dive for cheaper than the ship prices.  Score!  And…we saw not one, but TWO turtles!  And lots of other cool stuff.  Day = made.

Our plan was to take advantage of Playa Maya, but we left the dive boat later than expected and the all-inclusive price wasn’t really worth the 2-3 hours we could spend there.  So, we hit Senor Frogs and had our first meal of the day: we split nachos, chicken tacos, and had giant margs and maybe a few shots poured in our mouths.

We spent the rest of the afternoon on deck and marveled that this is probably the most sober we’ve ever left Cozumel (read: not falling down), so we had a *little* more to drink to make up for it.

We fancied up for the last formal dinner.  Richard brought me two lobsters because he is awesome.

Then, we sort of flitted around the ship.  We lost 30 bucks in the casino SUPER quickly so we left.  We then hit the disco and actually danced this time!  We lost our seats from dancing so we went to a different bar and found a completely abandoned comfy lounge.  Then we found out bars were closing so we got munchies at the cafe and went to bed.

Saturday is always the saddest day at sea since you have to leave the next day.  We skipped breakfast again to play cards with the fam, hit lunch, and then decided instead of all the crazy things we wanted to do (gym! waterslides! mini golf! rock climbing!) we instead promptly took a 1.5 hour nap and then went and swam and read by the pool until it was time to play cards again.  I think I ended up with about a 7 and 5 record for wins and losses.  We all did pretty well trading off with the wins.

I honestly didn’t write down the food I ate as well as I did last time, but I do remember this amazing appetizer (that I didn’t snap a picture of) – scallops with chorizo in a cauliflower puree.  Sounds weird but it was amazeballs.  I got a tandoori chicken salad with yogurt dressing that was amazing, and we split a bunch of desert around the table and the key lime pie and cheesecake were the best!

After dinner we did the packing we had put off, picked up our formal pictures (for the relatives), read books and fell asleep.

Sunday was fairly uneventful.  We actually slept until the last possible minute to leave the room, splitting a protein bar instead of one last breakfast orgy.  I was kind of sad but also after eating ship food for 7 days I was kind of ready for something different.  We drove home, hitting a little rain but otherwise it was fine, picked up our leezard, grabbed some BBQ, and binge watched Kimmy Schmidt season 3 while sipping some high class tequila and orange soda dranks because VACATION WASN’T YET OVER DANGIT.

And then it was.  D’awww.  The end.

Once I process the other cameras pictures I’ll put up a fishy highlights post and add them here as well.



Baby steps

I went and did things on a boat last week.

Let me show you how much it sucked.

And we’ll get to that, but now that today marks 30 days since doing THIS THING, it’s time to take baby steps away from being a slothy mc slotherpants.  It’s Monday, so it’s time for some goals up in here.  However, just like it’s a bad idea to go directly from tallying how many pieces of bread and butter you ate as an appetizer before your appetizer before your second appetizer at dinner (answer: a lot) to eating chicken and quinoa, we’ll be taking some time to get there from here.

Oddly enough (or not so oddly with the three days at the gym and then three days of between 2-4 hours chasing fish with cameras in the water), I seem to have stabilized around the same weight I was at before I left.  I think I’ve *finally* figured out how to not gain the 5-7 lbs typical on a cruise.  That doesn’t mean I’ve got all the answers to life because I’m still looking at about ~35 lbs I’d like to be rid of, but at least I haven’t doubled that in a week somehow.   Baby steps.

So, this week looks like kind of a slow start because these were a lot of things I was doing before.  At least kind of.  But for now, going back from *margaritas the size of my head* to *things that feel like normal healthy life* is plenty enough.  This is the week of baby steps.

You thought I was kidding right there. #senorfrogsdrinkingteam

Movement goals:

Unfuck my poor back.  On day #2 of the cruise my back started hurting and you wouldn’t have guessed it, but a bunch of whisky on the rocks as painkiller and traipsing around in heels all night did not help things.  Day 3-6 it was out of alignment and SUPER cranky when I was not horizontal (swimming or laying) or actively stretching it.  I have a chiropractor appointment today, but since it’s been out for a while, I expect it will not be immediately better and there will be some muscle carnage.  The focus of this week is to stretch and roll for 10-15 mins per day, and do anything else she wants me to do to make it happy.

Status quo.  In this light, I’m going to lay off the weights and running and anything serious for ONE more week.  I plan to ride bikes on Wednesday and maybe once more this weekend and swim as much as I can and MAYBE do some bodyweight stuff or yoga or something fun like playing in the lake later in the week if I feel better.  Or none of this if I don’t feel up to it.

10k+ steps per day.  Normally on cruises this is no problem at all but for some reason, we walked much less than normal (perhaps the back thing, perhaps our room was more conveniently located, perhaps I took my watch off sometimes when I wanted to look fancy so it didn’t count all my steps).  I definitely need to make sure this doesn’t fall off because this is a big part in weight loss when I’m not training as much.  Steps matter!

Fun fact –  it counts as training if you wear your IM shirt to the pool even if you don’t actually swim laps.

Consumption Goals:

On the record. I’ve finished my Ironman.  I’ve had some downtime where I enjoyed myself a bit.  Now, it’s time to get serious about trying to get down to *race weight*.  To this end, tracking food each meal when I eat it (not 2 days later) and daily logging on the scale starts TODAY.  This week, we’ll start with the goal to eat approximately 500-750 calories less than fitbit says I have burned.  If I do better than that, great.

Water water water.  At least 4×24 oz bottles before I leave work for the day.  I’m really bad about this if I don’t pay attention and I think on the cruise I lapsed on this pretty hard.  When beer and bottled water cost the same in Mexico….you know what I’m going to choose, right?

Detox… but just a little. Booze must fit into both the parameter above (calorie deficit goals) and below (sleep goals).  Let’s not go crazy with any further restrictions.  It IS Memorial Day weekend. 🙂

Beer 4$.  Water 4$.  I choose beer.

Life Goals:

All the shut eye.  I’m going to say 8+ hours of sleep a night is something I’ll put out there as a priority this week.  I’m feeling a bit run down after playing hard on vacation and my own bed felt SO AMAZING last night.  So, this week, I make sure I get lots of sleep.

Non-fiction reading.  While I’m relaxing in bed, I’ve got a few books I’d like to work on getting through (the big yellow Maffetone endurance training book, finally cracking something regarding online marketing and PR, etc).  For the next month, I probably need to hold off on reading more “marines in space” books even if they are actual physical paper books and not on my kindle.

The office.  I’m not saying we need to finish it, but so many other things hinge on getting this one space cleaned out that I want us to spend no less than *THREE* hours on it this weekend.  I would love to be able to move the table that’s been sprawled over the side of the guest bed for a year into there.

The kind of non-fiction reading I *don’t* want to do.  Seriously.  We’re a joke everywhere.

And while I have so many other things on my list (financial planner! doctor! hiking! comedy club! creating a business plan! book outline!), these are the things I’m willing to tackle this week.  Laying out ALL THE THINGS like #projectspring last year seems overwhelming and exhausting right now.  I’ll focus a little smaller and revisit the plan again in 7 days.

So I ask… what’s YOUR plan for the next 7 days?

8 reasons why being a prissy pants and a triathlete don’t mix

Triathlon is super fun and awesome, but it’s definitely not a world for someone who doesn’t like getting dirty.  Here are eight things you’ll have to get over if you want to triathlon.

A lovely long row of porta potties is a triathlete’s best friend around 6am race day…

#1 – Porta potties. You’re going to have to use them at some point.  They may not be QUITE as bad as the ones baking all day at an outdoor music festival but by the time the gun goes off, they’re usually pretty, erm, full and usually out of toilet paper.  Also, there’s not generally a place to wash your hands after.  That’s what the lake is for.

#2 – The gauntlet of urine, aka, the swim.  Speaking of the lake, the open water swim is definitely not for the weak of heart.  Besides the fact that you’re going to get hit, kicked, and shoved, you’ll also probably (accidentally) drink some of it.  And people have been peeing in there all day.  You might be swimming in a slipstream of pee at any point.

About to go swim in a lake with a non-zero amount of pee in it and I’m doing just fine, thanks!

#3 – Public indecency.  You’ll have to stick your hand down your pants to apply something called Deez Nutz or Hoohah Glide or Butt Butt’r before you bike and depending on how long you’re riding bikes, during it.  You’ll learn what a snot rocket is and how to properly do them without (regularly) getting boogers on yourself.  In the Ironman, you’ll get buck nekkid to change in front of hundreds of people in the changing tent.  If you have any modesty, go ahead and throw it out the window right now.

#4 – Anti-beauty queen. If you washed your hair every time you worked out, it would fall out.  So, get ready to accept SWEAT as a valid hair product.  Also, since you’re going to be showering at the gym (and at work) more than your house, you’ll need to keep your beauty routine short and to a minimum.  People will probably recognize you better with wet hair than dry hair after a while.

Laying in a park eating a cold cheese sandwich about 50 miles into a bike ride.  This is fine.

#5 -Jack’s utter lack of give-a-shit about appearances. You’ll get to the point where you just DO NOT CARE what you look like to anyone else.  Goggle eyes and looking like a drowned rat coming out of the swim.  Pain faces on the run.  I’ve laid down on the side of the road and shoved food in my mouth a non-zero amount of times in the last year.  You’ll walk into a restaurant sweaty in your clippy cloppy bike shoes, and full kit for a meal and a beer (though it helps to have your whole team with you there).  You’ll learn to own your spandex proudly even in inappropriate places.

#6 – Body problems.  You are going to have a lot of conversations about peeing, pooping, stomach aches, blisters, saddle sores, crotch pain, chafing, road rash, and probably other disgusting things that I haven’t even thought of.  I happily use the bathroom behind the bushes if need be.  Also, the likelihood is that sometime in your career, you’re going to poop your pants.  It’s not happened to me yet, but I’ve had a LOT of close calls so it’s probably going to happen someday.  I’ve made peace with this.

These will absolutely replace your Jimmy Choos.  Or in my case, the Shoe Carnival sale specials.

#7 – Say goodbye to cute shoes.  Heels will not be worth it anymore.  I have so many cute shoes that I just look at and sigh while I choose to wear either running shoes, flat super padded sandals, or flat boots on the daily because I cannot be arsed to walk around on sore and tired legs in anything that doesn’t feel like a pillow giving my feet a hug.

#8 – “She gets too hungry for dinner at 8”. Yep, Frankie is right.  It’s hard to coordinate meals with other people.  I need to eat, I need to eat a lot, and I need to eat right now, and I’m not going to be polite about it.  If you mess with any of these things, we’re probably going to need to have some words and you’ll see my nasty side.  Also, I’m going to be probably be picky about how healthy it is.  I want a giant side of vegetables, some whole grain options, and some protein that isn’t covered in a bunch of fat.  Unless I want the opposite of those things.  And that can flip at any moment depending on the weather, my training, or my whim.

The one thing I will never just “get over” though?  The early morning wakeups.  This priss needs her beauty sleep.

What have YOU given up for sport or fitness?

Invisible Things

If something exists that bothers me, but I don’t really want to prioritize doing anything about it, I can usually make it disappear.  This works on objects, like the dirty half spilled cat litter box in the garage that had been sitting there since when it was cold enough to put the cat inside at night.

Lumpy space princess is not a good look for me.

This also works on mental things as well – for example, during heavy training cycles, I can almost completely ignore the emotional attachment to what’s going on with the scale.  Once you remove the “so there’s a few lumps but we’re going to go bike 100 miles today so who cares?” aspect about life, it’s really hard to not look in the mirror and be really negative and nasty to myself about it.  I’m trying to be patient, I’m trying to be kind, but everything just feels so far away from where I want to be right now.

And oh, the patience part of it is SO HARD.  At least when you’re doing a super tough multi-hour run, you have the direct power to progress it forward.  You’re doing something.  Right now, my body feels and looks like such a mess in so many ways it’s just not cool and the BEST thing I can do isn’t something, but NOT do something.  I can NOT eat a bunch of crap and fill it with too much alcohol.  I can NOT just jump back into multi-hour efforts and keep my workouts short.

That’s ok, I thought, I’ll just convert all that volume over to speed.  Short and NOT so sweet.  Then, I tried to do a splash and dash at the gym expo thingee and I was busting ass to keep my run speed in the 11s for 1 kilometer.  ONE.  I’ve ran marathons that felt less difficult at about the same pace.  In fairness, this was after a little man kicked my ass in 45 minutes with some drumsticks in a class, I did a 750m all out row (3m13sec, not bad!), and then tried halfheartedly to do some standup paddleboard yoga on shaky and tired legs, but STILL.  I honestly thought my garmin was broken.

Scenes from #pureaustinexpo17 – I want that bowl for breakfast EVERY DAY.

So, I really did spend all my cash on race day and now I’m living paycheck to paycheck and I need to calm my shit if I ever want to have a savings account again.  This is SO different than last year’s offseason where I didn’t want to touch a bike for 2 months, I am just so mentally fired up to DO STUFF that it’s excruciating that my body is taking so long to get with the program.  I’m unfairly comparing myself to where I was last year this time – after two months of offseason.  I’ve now just passed two weeks.

One of the coaches at our gym also did IM Texas and looked at us crazy when we told her even the little we’ve been doing.  She said she’s on pizza and beer for AT LEAST another two weeks.  So, fine.  I’m done with the pizza part of the equation, I need to watch what I’m eating because I refuse to gain any MORE weight, a reasonable, healthy human amount of light-moderate activity sounds like where I’m at right now.  Walking for an hour.  Riding bikes to work or on our recovery ride.  Swimming a lap or two around the lake.  Paddleboards and kayaks.  Lighter strength workouts.  Longer and harder efforts and I need to take some time apart, for our own good.

And I need to have faith that my body will let me know when it’s ready for more.  It’s killing me to have my season end just as tri season is ramping up and watching my teammates and friends crush races just stokes the fire to get RECOVERED already and back up and out there.  However, Saturday taught me it will not end well unless I give myself the time and space to do this the right way.  It’s just hard and I feel like such a weenie.

At least I’m an Ironweenie.

So, last week I did these things:

  • One rowing/weights/stretching session (45m)
  • One 18 mile BSS ride (1h30m)
  • One mile swim in the lake (30m)
  • All the crap at the expo (2h30m)

I also walked at least 10k steps each day (an average of about 14.6k actually).

This is definitely the maximum effort I want to be at right now and I’ll probably be dialing it back a little bit this week.  I’m not going to put up a plan because I’m not there yet, but I’m sure I’ll ride bikes a bit, I probably won’t be able to resist the lake being perfect right now at least once this week, I’ll continue to completely ignore running (we’re definitely not on speaking terms after Saturday), and if I feel good later in the week, some light strength work.

Let’s also talk about the realization about how that silly little sticks class kicked my ass.  Of course I’m probably not going to do stuff like that regularly during season, but it opened my eyes a bit.  Ironman training makes you super strong in so many ways, but it makes you so WEAK in others.  If I want to be a more well rounded human and overly stronger, more stable, and functional athlete, I need to do things besides all the miles of run/bike/swim.  To that end, I’m hoping to incorporate some of those types of activities that move my body in different ways over the next few months.

With the nutrition side of things, I’m feeling kind of the same way.

At least I’m cooking up some real foods now that have plants in them, so that’s a step in the right direction.

My mind is ready to cut calories down because oh my stars, I’m ready to start trying to shed some of this unfortunate weight, but I have to make sure I’m allowing myself to actually recover as well and trying to completely underfeed myself would not help me accomplish this end.  I started tracking my food last week, and it went… okay.  I managed to keep approximately a 5000 calorie deficit per fitbit with minimal pain and suffering and my weight stabilized at 189.5.  My appetite is beginning to behave itself, with moments of rebellion.

I’m trying to stay away from a barrage of junk food, drinking plenty of water, and actually quite trying to slowly replace all the carbs all the time with more fruit and veggies, starting with snacks.  I’m back to desert being described as something you have a small amount once or twice a week vs multiple times per day.  I’ve had the same bag of pretzels for two weeks now and there are no other salty snacks around.  My meals are similar, but I’m only eating three of them per day and I’m trying to gravitate towards the more filling ones for the calories because other than plant type snacks, that’s it for the day.

The last thing on the list is our friend alcohol.  I was actually able to celebrate Cinqo de Mayo with tacos and margaritas (homemade for both so they were lower calorie) for the first time in years because I didn’t have some sort of crazy training reason I had to be up super early.  It’s been nice to have a glass of wine here, a beer there, and not worry about how I was going to utterly fuck up tomorrow’s training.  If I actually want to make weight loss progress, I’m going to have to ration this eventually, but we’re still in the “hang loose” phase of this particular adventure for another few weeks.  Track and healthify the food, but enjoy some drinkies.

Sunday was a full on triathlon with volunteering, cleaning up, and a movie.  T1 was chillin’ on the couch with a beer and T2 was dinner and some wine.

My mood and energy level definitely perked up a bit this week.  There was gaming with friends. We went to go see a movie (Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – which I HIGHLY recommend and think might be my favorite Marvel movie so far).  We volunteered at Rookie Tri.  We had an early Mothers Day celebration with the in laws after busting our butts at the expo.  The week before, I think I left the house ONCE on Saturday for a few hours but that was it for plans besides a recurring date with my couch and netflix.  It was exactly what I needed, but it’s too pretty outside to make a habit of that!

We also reached the advanced beginner level of adulting!  I didn’t get that haircut, but I was able to finally CLEAN THE EFFING CAR and we got it washed and I’m dropping it off tonight to be serviced.  We finally made a Costco trip, and bought and installed outdoor lighting we’ve been talking about forever.  Additionally, we did a pretty good job picking up of the house, and cleaned out and blew the leaves out of the garage.  We cooked garlic shrimp pasta with asparagus and spinach, cilantro cajun turkey with rice and veggies, and chicken tacos.

Next week is all about moi.  I can’t do much about my body feeling lumpy, inflamed, and bloated, but I can make myself the best version of me I can.

  • Haircut!  …and after I get it done, consider using hairdye for the first time in about 15 years.  Part of the BLEH I look terrible is my hair and the cut will probably take care of it, but part of me isn’t sure about the Frankenstein’s bride thing I have going on in the front with the grey streak.
  • Pluck my eye caterpillars.
  • Redo my toes and maybe even my nails.
  • Pick up after sun care stuff, because my beloved Clinique is almost out after 4 years of using it…

Maybe more if I get antsy but I’m definitely not ready to graduate to Intermediate level adulting just yet.



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