getting buff

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

motivation and the rules for the silly season

You may have noticed that I have stopped posting the weekly weigh in posts. I must admit that at the moment I am a little betwixt and between. Let me explain.

If you ask me how I am feeling personally, I would tell you that I am pretty happy with myself. Diet wise, there are some things that I am unhappy with, but basically since May a lot of junk type stuff has gone by the wayside. I have resisted the cheese and dip snacking which tends to go under the radar. I do eat too much sometimes, but it is mostly home-cooked and healthy. Exercise wise I am certainly happy that I am doing regular exercise at the moment running 2-3 times per week without fail. My energy is improved, my attention is improved and generally I am feeling better and better about myself.

However, if you put any of those thoughts in the space of a long term view, I am not so happy as I want to be. The early days of beginning running has given way to a longer term and slower view of improvement. It took me 9 weeks to be running 30 mins three times a week, but now I can't help but wonder how long it will take me before I can comfortably crack the 10km and beyond. The path seems a lot longer and there seems to be a lot more work in front of me.

So I am somewhat more inclined to blow off a training run or re-schedule it for the next day, on account of the fact that the evil deege voice on my shoulder says "you are going to have to run hundreds of kms in the next 6 months, what difference will it make if you run this couple of km tomorrow instead of today?" So I have now gone two weeks without a long run, which of course means I am shitting bricks about SiS3. Part of me wants to transfer to run the 4km but the other part of me insists that I need to follow through and deal with the consequences of my poor preparation.

I am still doing the weekly weigh ins, but get depressed about the progress. Again, I find myself unable to celebrate the small advances I am making because I can't tear my focus away from the fact that I still have years of this ahead of me. My brain tells me that I want to do the lifestyle change thing which for me means changing things incrementally, and I don't really have the will or motivation to do any super hero boot camp challenge. But I still think that it should be easier than this. Because I darn well deserve it!!

What a grumpy guts I am today. But I need to recognise that the life that I choose to lead doesn't always make this lifestyle stuff easy or straight forward. Over the next month I have, to date, bookings for 6 christmas drinks/cocktail parties. And I am darned if I am going to be the one in the corner drinking mineral water and pretending to enjoy my carrot sticks. But at the same time, it means that as an evening runner, it will impact often on my running schedule.

So here are my guidelines for the silly season until January 1.

First I am going to run or walk every day that I don't have something on in the evening. No more chickening out if it is too hot - that just means I do a brisk walk or a short run instead.

Secondly, I am going to be sensible at Christmas drinks/parties. This means on evenings with drinks or parties, I have to bring in some healthy small meals to have as afternoon tea when going to drinks, so that I don't turn up at a nibblies function ravenously hungry.

Thirdly, lunches for November and December are salad and meat sandwiches or salad. Too easy to eat less well at lunchtime which means I need a lean dinner, and my dinners at this time of year are less likely to be something that I can strictly control.

Finally, enter events and races as much as possible to keep the interest up. Go on different running routes, plan excursions to places where I can exercise, pull the weights out of the shed. Anything to keep the interest up.

We'll call this the Seasonal Cheer program and reassess my progress on January 2. If I break even I will probably call this a success.


Good planning Deege- I also do the light lunch whenever possible because I know dinner becomes a battle between want and need! Dont beat yourself up over a few pastries you didn't really need though!
Hope the Seasonal Cheer program works- I like your ideas.
I hope there's a voice in there that says 'I talked kathryn into doing the 8ks and I can't pike out on her!'

I reckon Sunday is going to be a hard slog. I ran the SiS route yesterday with a friend and we ended up walking about 2ks of it. Hopefully it was the heat slowing us down.
Deege, I understand very well about the slowing down of improvement!! It's like a plataeu - for me it feels like I'm going slower than I ever have! At first there were these amazing milestones, but now they are fewer and further in between. But for me, it's bigger picture stuff. I want to run. I get out of bed in the morning because I want to - not through any sense of obligation to running. I'm not very good at running (yet!), and I will not get better by missing my sessions. Running has become a priority for me. I like the feeling of having something really important in my life. As for diet...... well I'm working on that one. Seasonal Cheer hmmm? Sounds perfectly plausible to me! I figure as long as I am THINKING about what I am eating, it's an improvement! Using my brain instead of my belly (it's just that there is so much more belly, it kinda takes over sometimes).
sounds great Deege and i am with you on the whole improvement thing too. I put up a PB chart on my blog stats are not impressive at all but I am going to beat every single one of them and having that to aim for has me already itching to get out and run again
Very sensible, realistic approach, Deege - you're not going to be one of those who plan to fail because they fail to plan! It takes into account the fact that we do have a heavy holiday season coming up, laden with parties and hot weather. But it is possible to stay on track, and I'm confident you'll do it!

I found getting the first 30 mins/5km routine in was the toughest part - after that the walls seem to come down and it was often a case of holding back so as to not go too far too fast.
Theres certainly no denying that this is the hardest time of the year Deege. But I reckon if you stick to that plan, you'll do fine. Its good that you've thought about it so much and prepared for it, that will get you a long way.

Thanks for clearing up my confusion at my stats! Doh! Why didn't I think of that?!?!

Oh Deege, you have every right to post grumpy, if it's how you feel, then it's how you feel. But I just have to say I love the fact that at the end of your post you plan things to get out of the slump.

Also, up to your last weigh in post you've lost 5.5kg, that's 12.13 pounds, 0.8 stone. You can run for 30mins, 2-3 times per week. That's an achievement. When I got to running 5k I felt like 10k was so far away, but actually it will creep up on you... I'm pretty much back at square one and looking down the barrel of building up mileage again, and it's a b****y scary prospect, I can relate to that feeling. Have heart Deege, you can and will do it. :oD


PS. I make no apologies for the Go Deege! nature of this post ;o)
Hey deege, I know exactly how you feel. I got a little overwhelmed a little while ago and lost a lot of focus (and gained a bit of weight/lost fitness), now, I have really tried just to take it one day at a time. For the moment, it seems to be working.

Great plan for the festive season. Everything in moderation - and who can really say no to a glass of christmas cheer!
I feel massively encouraged. And a massive geek. I put these plans up here so that I am (theoretically) accountable to following them. For the last two days I have followed the plan and both runs have felt like total crap. Hope it is a matter of "bad rehearsal, good performance"
I am also on the verge of removing the weight from my Blog. Haven't been too motivated by its lack of progress lately.

Great plan for the festival season and good luck.

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