Adjusted Reality

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

Month: April 2024

Cap10k and being part of the solution

I ran a 10k. It’s been a minute (or something like 10 years) since I did a standalone 10k not after a bike.

Here’s what I wrote on social media that day:

I signed up for the Cap10k this year one for a few reasons. One, I’ve never done it. That’s crazy! Two, I wanted motivation to keep running longer than 5k after the Austin Half Marathon and to push myself to run a little faster.

Not much of that training worked out. After Covid in January, I slowed down to keep my heart rate lower while training. This adjusted my running gait. Doing that knocked things out of alignment, and I developed cranky hip syndrome (this is the technical term for it, for sure), which forced me to stay at that slower (11:30-12 min miles) pace during runs since then.

After some chiropractor intervention, things are much better, and earlier this week I pulled my flat 5k pace back under 11-minute mile pace. Progress! So, I showed up this morning hopeful but ready for a jog if running faster didn’t pan out. Ten-ish minutes per mile felt challenging but doable on the hills, so I pushed myself to stay there even if it sucked running some of those steep hills. Halfway through, I got 1h5 mins in my head as my goal time, but I had to speed up.

Thankfully, the second half had fewer ascents, but GOSH my legs were thraaaashed running up 15th and Enfield hills. I stuck with it and tried to go to the happy pain place. I was close to that 1h5m so I gave it what I had the last half mile or so downhill and came in at 1h5 and 15 seconds. (10:19 pace) Top 40% overall, top third female, top quarter masters, top quarter age group. This race is truly against myself and my own goals since it’s so large but nice to see I’m not doing so terribly compared to the masses. ?

I don’t hate this at all. Y’all, I’m not a hill runner, up or down, and this is honestly faster than I’ve run even on flat ground for a while. It’s a nice sign that I am ready to push myself this year to do some faster runs because they’re in there, just waiting for me to get over the fact that it’s EASY to go out and run easy. Time to find the pain cave again. Maybe that’s the big scary that I need right now.

Unfortunately, the next day (why is it never the same day?) I was limping around on my hip, and it’s persisted all week. I visited the chiropractor yesterday, and she put me back in alignment but I’m still some days away from running. I also spent the week doing that pouting thing I do, sabotaging myself by eating too much, kinda slacking on workouts, and not doing all my recovery. I also felt draggy as hell for almost the whole week. Garmin said I was sleeping pretty well, but I just felt like my batteries weren’t charging up until literally today.

It’s not been all that bad – I’m keeping up with strength training, I’ve swam both weeks, cycling is happening, and 8-9 logged hours of activity (with walks) doesn’t suck. But, it’s not enough for how I’m eating and drinking, I suppose.

So, I can either be part of the problem, or part of the solution. For the last month or two I think I’ve been part of the problem. Time to be part of the solution.

So, reminders to myself:

  • The gym is half a mile away from the house. You have a home gym and bike trainer. You are either home or work from home 5 days out of the 7 and the other two, you’re home at a decent hour. No excuses not to swim, bike, do weights, or do the arc trainer.
  • Recovery items like the roller do not function as recovery when you give it the side eye and slink past it
  • Stretching only works when you do it, not just think about it, dreading it for more than the five minutes it would take to do it.
  • These things still exist after 5pm/after work, even if you wish them and will them not to.
Doing this instead of recovery is fun but maybe try a little of both?

And an additional one:

  • Your book isn’t going to get edited by procrastinating it by writing blogs/doing whatever

I hadn’t touched it in 2 weeks before this weekend. This isn’t normal. I made such a solid effort to get to the end of the first draft and the first editing pass, I should probably give myself a little grace here. But, I’ll admit, I’ve been less than motivated to pick it back up, finding other things to do instead. In what I’ve learned with writing, motivation doesn’t always just appear when you ask it to, sometimes you have to force the issue. I need to remember that sometimes the Muse comes to you, and sometimes you have to summon her.

The good news is that I made great strides this weekend and am about 1/3rd done with the second edit pass. I think I’m in a hurry because I want to read my draft again and share it with Joel (and that’s a great sign!). I just need to commit to a chapter, or just some pages, every time I sit down with any spoons left in my drawer after work.

It’s not all rubbish, I promise. Here are some good things I/we have accomplished in the first half of April

Les photos de la Louvre, c’est fini!
  • Taxes are done, and we got confirmation we don’t really need to pay quarterly/hire a CPA like we thought and we owed less (and have a plan to hopefully owe MUCH less next year).
  • Bathroom remodel starts Monday. This will indeed throw my life into chaos for a bit, which is why I’m reminding myself of all the reasons this doesn’t need to disrupt my fitness.
  • The pool is on its way from brown to clean! So, like full scale adulting this April is a go!
  • Paris pictures are very much in process. Perhaps it’s a little procrastination of book editing, but it would take an act of god for me to not finish the last 50 or so this month! Now I need to figure out what’s next.
  • We are really close to booking our end of year trip to Bonaire! Joel got cleared by his doc (not that there were questions but apparently for men over 45 they can ask for a doctor note) and we’re excited to go for another week of diving after we make sure we get our gear serviced.
  • Our plans for late summer are up in the air dependent on work travel, there are probably different options depending on where the origin point is, but we’re considering options there too.
  • Debating between camping and Mexico next month. I know, wild variation. Camping was the plan, but we have been over a year without diving so we need to log a dive before Bonaire or they will make us take a refresher course. Less likely when shore diving in Cozumel. 🙂
And, y’know, I kinda miss this place.

So, I just need to get back into the habits I had made earlier this year and make the numbers go down.

  • Raising my activity levels/daily calorie burn a little. No preference on how it happens (walk, bike, elliptical, swim, run when I can run again), but it needs to happen.
  • Eat less than 1200 calories a day + activity and THATS IT. Not “sorta kinda oops too much today oh well”. Do this by logging your food as you eat it, not 2 days later and then acting surprised.
  • For the rest of April, back to aggressive recovery. Every day I will: stretch, roll, boots, ice, and do the silly crab walk things. I can go back to two things per day once I’m reliably running again with no pain.
  • Go back to doing my meditation at least 4-5 days a week not “oops I did it once this week”.

This blog space is repetitive. I say the same things over and over because they’re easy to say and difficult to follow and re-affirming them in text is a way to get back on track. It’s easy to fall off good habits with a “treat yo self” attitude once or twice and then you realize it’s been two weeks and the trendweight, she’s going up. So, I need to do the right things. I’d like the numbers to go down. I’d like to not be limping around. I’d like to have a second pass readable draft. I just need to remind myself to be part of the solution for these things instead of the problem.

What goes down sometimes comes back up

And, not always in the good way.

Joel left for a week and I still put on clothing and drove myself to the office, I want a cookie.

Not that it wasn’t a very nice month full of very nice things, but a lot of those things had a lot of calories in them and made trendweight very sad. It’s not like this is an anomaly but still, I start every March going, “why yes, I am going to celebrate our birthdays as a day of celebration and not a month, and this will keep me going towards my goals.”

And then…

…I’m over my calories pretty much every day (by a significant margin) until March 17ish. Ah well. What goes up also must come down (or I say it must), so we are back to clean living and abiding by the numbers, not just what I feel like.

  • Week 1 (Feb 26): 1249 OVER
  • Week 2 (Mar 4): 715 OVER
  • Week 3 (Mar 11): 1153 OVER
  • Week 4 (Mar 18): 1397 UNDER
  • Week 4 (Mar 25): 1 OVER (lets call it a tie)
Believe it or not this is from the thousands of calories under week! I walked EVERYWHERE

It usually takes 2-3 weeks of habit to show on the scale, so I’m guessing the weight will start going down – should I continue the trend of not being a jerk with food – this week or next. Hooray! April should be back to normal, not alllll the celebrating, so goals here are same as they ever were – log all foods, stay under calories for the week, and be no more than 182.4 lbs on April 30th (let’s see if we can make up a little bit for a lost March).

#2 Running and Stuff

I keep thinking my hip issue has cleared up, and then it comes back. Right now, it’s feeling great but I keep saying this and then a few days later… BOOM. I really would like this to get resolved so I can get back to running faster and more often. However, my on-again-off-again relationship with running means my enthusiasm for triathlon has resumed a bit. Cycling (indoors and watching Bloodbowl games) is a thing in my life again and with Joel out of town last week, I managed to get to the pool TWICE in March and once this evening.

Proof! I swamz!

Things I have learned:

  • If I am to ever swim regularly, it is probably going to just need to be on my own initiative/schedule, and let Joel find his times separately. We just never find the time during the day that works for us to go together and lack the enthusiasm at night. Monday night seems to be a magical exception so we will continue to try for weights n swim Mondayz.
  • I can absolutely bribe myself to do 30-60 mins of biking with the promise of watching a game or two and some sort of candy snack every 5 mins (like an M&M).
  • I think I need to figure out how to change my stride/pace back to run like I did pre-Covid. This issue developed after I got back to running and intentionally slowed down 1 min/mile to keep my heart rate lower. Now, the stupid hip is keeping me at that pace :P. Maybe I just need to force myself run faster? Who knows?

Check out the difference between the first half of the month and the second, especially that week I was on my own.

Now, remember, it doesn’t log walks, I walked 64 miles this month (24 hours) and that’s not nothing. Check those activity times – 8-12 hours a week – I’m walking A LOT. But besides that:

  • 1100 yd swimmming (22 mins)
  • 47 miles cycling (3 hours)
  • 16.2 miles running (3 hours)
  • 4 sessions elliptical (2hours22min)
  • 11 sessions weight training (5h37min)

So, that means I walked a little over 2 miles per day and did 30 mins of other tracked activity. That’s honestly pretty great and healthy… just not for the amount of food I ate in March. So, I need to either ramp this up a little or ramp that down. Probably a wee bit of both.

In April my goals are:

  • 3x week weights, non-negotiable, at the gym as often as possible, up the weights at home if I can’t.
  • Swim once a week. Just friggin’ do it. Yes, it’s not an efficient use of my time as a workout due to prep time and waiting for a lane sometimes and all the rest of it. Yes, I’m going to do it anyway.
  • Bike at least once outdoors and see if that can resume some enthusiasm with that particular sport.
  • Run a 10k on April 7 and then do whatever running makes the most sense to rehab the hip (none, short, fast, treadmill, sandwiched with walking, bricks, etc etc etc)

#3 Adulting

This month we shall do the taxes and get the things for/clean out the things to remodel the bathrooms. All this stuff has to happen in April, no getting out of it, and I’m sure by the end of the remodel I will not want to do any dang thing else for about a month. Only exception is prepping the pool for the summer. We’ll do that. So, yeah, garage and fridge – maybe in June?

#4 Fun Stuff

Everything has truly taken a backseat to Book 2’s completion and first editing pass. And I did it! Kinda. I have two “notes” left (find a good place to add a specific scene/conversation and make the ending better). I believe it’s currently readable as a first draft, but obviously needs some improvement. I spent more time in the second half of the book on my first pass edit noodling over word choices (did it need it more or did I just have more patience? I’m not sure). I did deliver Joel a plane draft at midnight before his morning flight the next day and said “don’t read the last two chapters”. He only read the first 5 chapters and is kinda now waiting on me to give him the go ahead for a full read. I’m stalling. In April, I want to get a full and complete grammar/word noodling and voice pass and re-read the book myself.

I did have a great and productive photo sorting day and have everything from Paris now ready for editing. I certainly didn’t finish this month (still on the Louvre) but the big hurdle (picking which pictures to edit out of literally thousands!) is done. I’m three sets away from done with the Louvre, so my goal in April is to finish Paris and move onto something else.

I’ve looked at my guitar and paints a few times. It’s fine. I’ve been writing and playing outside and it’s fine, maybe there will be more crafty stuff over the summer when it’s too hot to spend hours tromping around the neighborhood.

So, April is about:

  • Actually freaking focus on making some scale progress. Track daily, don’t go over calories, weigh almost every day, and stop with the unearned treats.
  • Do the normal weights stuff, add some biking and swim once a week, run less but faster after the race
  • Get the bathrooms redone, prep taxes, get the pool up and running
  • Word noodling pass on the book and Paris photo editing

And… enjoying as much outside time as possible before it gets too hot. All the walks to all the things.

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