Friday, October 29, 2010

Will eggs fly?

I've come to a really big decision about this Halloween. One that I didn't really think I'd ever make.

I'm not giving out candy.

It something I've given a lot of thought to, and when I finally went to the store to find some alternative to the traditional Halloween junk, I found these:

They're mini pinball games and animals.

I didn't come to this decision lightly, and I'm going to be honest. The first reason I was considering going the candy free route is selfish. I didn't want endless amounts of mini chocolate bars in my house calling my name. I'm getting better at saying no to various temptations, but for me, the first step in saying no is keeping it out of my face in the first place.

There's a bigger reason for going candy free though. Throughout this process, I've maintained that it isn't just about the calories. It's about the health. And, if I'm avoiding something for my own health, how responsible of me is it to feed it to someone else? For example, if white bread isn't good for me, it's not good for my children. As such, I no longer have white bread in my house. The only crackers are now trisquits, which are one of the better choices out there, since they have no sugar or white flour. I'm not saying the contents of my pantry are perfect, but gradually, as I've looked at foods and decided they aren't really food, I've questioned why I would feed it to my family.

I'm not saying that I'm as strict with my other people's food as I am my own. For instance, I don't expect that anyone else needs to completely avoid sugar the way I do. I hope that my children are able to learn moderation in their food choices.

Halloween, however, is no longer about moderation. The actual trick or treating, I don't mind. I actually find it a nice tradition which brings back a sense of community. Neighbours open their doors and you meet the people that live 3 doors down and you've never talked to. Children have fun dressing up in costumes. And they get candy. Lots and lots of candy.

I love traditions. I find it really hard to break any. But, the tradition of junk at every house is one that I think could change. It's too bad you can't give out apples anymore, as everything has to be individually wrapped to be considered safe.

But, lets start voting with our dollars. Go to the store and choose something that is a better choice for our children. A healthier choice. The more people that do this, the more stores will bring in for options. It will take years to make a true change, but one person at a time we can begin.

So, will my house get egged this year? I don't know.

What are you giving out this Halloween?

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Three things Thursday

1. I'm sick - again.

I feel like I'm just getting hit with one cold after another. It sucks. It also puts me in a position of needing to decide between resting to get better or pushing through with my runs and swims. Right now, the choice is to push through and do them, but go easy on intensity. The only good thing to come out of it is that I've discovered I'm craving citrus fruit and tea, rather then my usual white carb craving that comes along with a cold.

2. I got new headphones for my ipod shuffle today (covered by warranty, at least).

Seems apple messed up on this one. The headphones that came with the shuffle start to short out when worn by people that sweat. The salesperson that helped me commented that none of their products are meant to be subject to humidity. I told him that apple had heavily marketed the shuffle to the fitness community, down to showing people running with it in their commercials. He had no response to that.

3. It's gotten cold here.

Swimming is easy, since it's inside. Running is doable. I just have to suck it up and dress properly. I'm trying to reconcile myself with the fact that biking will be nearly non-existant over the winter. I don't want to spend money on my hybrid bike to replace the tires with slicks, which means I can't use it with a trainer. (I also don't have a trainer yet.) A new road bike isn't in the forecast until next year sometime. I'll have to make do with the recumbent exercise bike, which doesn't actually use the muscles the same way.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Running with a calorie deficit

Training for a 10 km (6.2mi) run has proved to be a lot more challenging then training for a 5km (3.1mi) was. To get up to the 5k distance, I just followed the program and gradually increased my running times. I'm learning that it isn't quite as straight forward to run longer distances.

I am consistently running into the same problem. On at least half my longer runs, I've bonked (run out of energy and hit the wall). I've played around with my pre-run food intake a bit, but there is one major hold back: the fact that I am maintaining a calorie deficit in my day to day life.

I feel like I'm stuck between two worlds right now: the world of running/triathlons, and the world of weight loss. I'm finding that those two worlds don't mesh that well.

A calorie deficit = an energy deficit.

It's a fact. A calorie is a unit of energy. In order to lose weight, you have to expend more calories then you consume. This isn't a state that is conducive to endurance events. For endurance events, your body needs easily accessible calories to give you quick energy to keep going.

I've always maintained that activity is not the way to lose weight. It's essential for good health and weight maintenance, but not actual weight loss. I honestly believe it would be easier to lose weight by cutting my calories sufficiently, and sitting on my butt most of the day. Then an energy deficit wouldn't have as much effect since I wouldn't be trying to do much.

Now, that doesn't mean I'm giving up either. I do have a plan to stop bonking during my longer runs. It includes restructuring my food intake on the days of my long run so that I'm eating more before my run. I'm also allowing a slight increase in my calorie intake on the one day a week that I run for over an hour. Generally speaking, I don't eat more due to activity, but it's time to start making an exception on days where the calorie expenditure is becoming that significant.

I won't deny I'm a bit nervous about getting this figured out in time. I have one more long run of 13km (8mi) prior to my 10km race. It's a tricky balance figuring out what to eat, without having too much in my stomach when I start the run.

Does anyone have any recommendations of good running books that talk about nutrition? It's time I start educating myself a bit more rather then just going on instinct.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Weekly weigh in and Winter Onederland

First things first:

Today's weigh in put me at 211.8, for a weekly loss of 2.4 and a total loss of 32.0.

Meg at Grande Skinny Latte has put out a challenge. It's the Winter Onederland Challenge. In the weight loss community, there's a place that many of us shoot for known as "Onederland", meaning a weight that starts with the number 1, rather then 2.

Initially, I hesitated to commit to this challenge. I generally prefer to set goals for things I will do, rather then things I want to happen. Losing weight within a certain time period is something I want to happen which depends on what I do.

Having said that, I am starting to get so close to Onederland I can taste it. When I am really honest about my food intake, and I track it, my weight loss tends to fall into the 1.5 - 2 pound range per week. This is an average. Some weeks I lose a bit more, some less. That means that Onederland is not so far away.

The goal:

Lose at least 12 pounds in the remaining 9.5 weeks before New Years. (Meg is shooting for Christmas, but I'm giving myself an extra week since I have more to lose.) This requires an average loss of 1.3 pounds per week, a very realistic amount.

The method:

Track my food every day
Stay within my calorie range of 1400 - 1800
Continue running 4 days a week, and swimming 3.

There are other things I consider important to get and stay healthy, but when I was setting my monthly goals, I found I was starting to make the list too long and overwhelming. I'm endeavoring to keep it short and simple. Those are realistic strategies that shouldn't be hard to stick to.

So, bring on Onederland!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Sleep, who needs it?

Most of my life, I needed 8-9 hours of sleep a night. That was the amount that left me feeling well rested, happy and healthy. If I went more then a couple nights on less sleep, my body shut me down. I got sick enough that I had no choice but get the rest my body demanded.

Then I had children.

According to my mother (who I still think might have been delusional), I slept through the night at two weeks old.

My children did not follow my example.

Spud took 3 YEARS to sleep through the night regularly. Sweetpea (who is 1.5 years younger,) took 1.5 years. They both started sleeping through the night within a month of each other.

I learned survival. I learned to function on less sleep. And, I functioned like a zombie for a lot of that time. I could do it, but that doesn't mean it was good for me. It doesn't mean it was good for my body.

This past week has been like a revival of that time. Sweetpea is working on her final molars, and is usually waking up screaming once a night. Spud is wetting his bed, after staying dry for the last few months. Last week, I was preparing for a craft fair, and was going to bed late because of it.

Last night, I was up 3 times with my children. My children, who are now 2 and 3.5. Could someone please send them a memo that they should be sleeping better now?

How does sleep affect me? Well, my workouts have been sluggish and breaking my sugar addiction again last week was harder then it should have been. Today, I know I'm in for a challenge. When I'm this sleep deprived, I tend to want to snack more. It's like a belief that food can make up for lost sleep.

So, who needs sleep?


Friday, October 22, 2010

Smile and say thank you

Lately, I've fallen into an annoying habit. At least it annoys me when other people do it, so I think it's quite reasonable to say it's annoying when I do it.

The inability to take a compliment. I've got a few lately and I brush them off.

The compliment: "You've lost a lot of weight, hey?"
My answer? "I'm only at about 30 pounds now."

The compliment: "You're looking really good."
My answer?: "I still have a long ways to go."


Number 1, this is just annoying. When somebody gives a compliment, it's generally because they mean it and they want to make the person feel good. You're spitting in their face when you refuse to accept it.

Number 2, what is wrong with me that I am unwilling to accept a little praise? Do I feel myself unworthy of it? If so, I need to get a little bit of confidence and recognize the fact that I'm a pretty great person, and I'm starting to look it too.

Do you do this?

If so, practice with me. Imagine someone giving you a compliment. Smile. Then say, "thank you." Don't spit in their face.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Three things Thursday

1. I took a fall this week

I scraped and bruised my knees and hurt my hand. It was the stupidest thing. I was walking along with the kids and stepped off the edge of the sidewalk, turning my ankle. I fell flat down. My ankle is, funny enough, totally fine. My hand and wrist have been bothering me since then, causing me problems with anything I have to grip or lift.

The good news is, today, it just feels sore, rather then painful. I think it's almost at the point where it will stop interfering with daily activities. It hasn't stopped me from running or swimming, but it has kept me from biking, since I can't hold onto the handlebars or brake.

2. I gained 2.8 pounds this week

Sneaky of me to put it in with my three things Thursday, but I've been avoiding posting it, and I need to get it out there. I'm not going to whine or complain about it. I made a series of choices that gave me that gain. It doesn't put me back into the obese category - quite. I'm skirting the edge though, with a BMI of 29.9. Not a place I want to be, and not a place I intend to stay for long.

Already today, I'm starting to feel less sugar crazy. It's what I've experienced every time I cut out sugar. The first day is really really tough. The first week is hard. Then I start to feel more normal, balanced and in control. I'm past the worst of it though.

3. My son informed me yesterday that I am a good runner, as is he.

His sister, father and grandparents, on the other hand, are "not very good runners". I'm glad I fit into the elite category with him. I guess everyone else should step it up a notch... ;)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The all or nothing attitude

I've found it interesting to read some of the responses from my last post. One of the pieces of advice was that you need to allow yourself some of those treat foods in moderation. After all, the all or nothing mentality can be dangerous.

While I agree that the all or nothing mentality can spell trouble, I look at it differently.

Here's some examples of how I try to avoid "all or nothing":

If I do slip with my eating, it doesn't mean that I throw in the towel since I've blown it. I fight my way back to a balance and continue on my journey.

When I am too sick to work out, I take a day off. It doesn't mean I'm quitting my training program; it means I'm taking a break to let my body get strong again.

I have days where I eat more food because my body is legitimately telling me I need it. For me, there's a difference between a bit of hunger (needed to lose weight) and feeling low (like I'm about to crash). I don't ignore those feelings.

This is where the "all or nothing" is needed for me:

I don't eat small quantities of "treats" on a regular basis. A once of week chocolate bar or a small daily candy don't work for me. Even special occasions have to be approached with caution.

I'm not saying that everyone is like this, but for me, sugar is like a drug. Avoiding it doesn't make me want it more. Eating it makes me want it more. If I allow myself a moderate "treat", I crave more and I obsess about it. It's like a drug in my system. I start to get irrational and think about nothing but.

For me, moderation when it comes to sugary and refined foods is not good. Nothing works for me, and the cravings subside. Moderate treats lead to excess.

While I'm typing this, I'm still in detox. I've had 3 mandarin oranges today to avoid going for the junk I don't need. Now that we've all eaten lunch, I'm leaving the kitchen and the house and taking the kids to the park rather then thinking about the sugar that I'm trying to get out of my system.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Moderation: FAIL!

This journey is teaching me a lot about myself. One thing I have learned is that there are certain things I am just not able to be moderate with.

As in: SUGAR

This weekend, I went for a fabulous weekend. I went away with the ladies from my babysitting co-op. I got a break from the usual daily grind, got to spend time outdoors in the mountains, had new experiences with a high ropes course and a giant swing (very cool). I got to know some of the ladies that I didn't know that well and connected further with some I already considered friends.

And I ate.

I joked Friday night that I was going to blog about all the saboteurs at the retreat. I'm not. Nobody pushed me to eat junk and a lot of it. There was one real saboteur. Me. I was the one that decided it would be okay to dip into the chocolate and the pastries, the girl guide cookies and the chips. No need to pass up the second helping at dinner. Sure, why not have that buttertart bar in the evening...

The thing is, some people indulge over a weekend and get back on track for Monday. Some people go a bit overboard on occasion and are fine.

I am not some people.

It's not the weekend itself that is a problem, but the fact that it opens a door that I need to keep closed. When I start indulging in those sugary treats, I'm like an addict. Seriously. It sounds crazy, but I start obsessing. I start wondering when I can get my next fix. Planning when I'll be able to stop by a donut shop or a bakery.

It's now Tuesday and I'm still struggling. Yesterday, I picked up some chocolate cookie things while at the grocery store. Last night, I decided to eat clean for the rest of the week, and then this morning, I dipped into the granola bars, one of the few snacky things in my house.

Heard the phrase: "you can start fresh tomorrow"?

What a load of crap.

If you're going to make the decision to start fresh, start now. This minute. Not tomorrow.

I should have blogged yesterday. It helps me organize my thoughts, and I know there's enough of you out there willing to give me a kick in the @ss.

So, detox time. For me, the sugar overload is a problem. I've learned that the way to get rid of it is to cut it all out. All of it. No sugar or refined flour. I don't believe in cutting out carbs. I still eat fruit, and whole grains such as quinoa or brown rice. Ultimately, this is what I consider ideal as an overall eating plan anyways. Normally, I allow a little bit of relaxation, but right now, it's time to break the cycle and go all the way.

I wish I could go to a weekend like this and practice moderation. For me, that's not the way it works. I have no regrets about going, but next time, I'm going to say no to the junk food from the start and get my enjoyment from the crazy card games, good company and beautiful space.

Friday, October 15, 2010

I am so terribly sorry.

Yesterday, I mentioned in my blog how beautiful the weather has been this month.

Today, I ran 8 km (5mi) in snow.

My hat following the run.

It's my fault, and I'm very sorry. I jinxed us.

If you live in my neck of the woods, I offer my most sincere apology.

The view from my front window

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Three things Thursday

1. My want list just got one item shorter.

My wonderful, fantabulous husband bought me my very own Garmin 305. I love it already and it's my new running and bike partner. It was used to track my distance for my 10-10-10 challenge and I've used it for all my runs since I got it. It deserves it's own post, so watch for that next week.

2. I am going away this weekend.

To camp! The babysitting co-op that I am involved with has organized a ladies weekend. So, I get to head off to camp in the nearby rockies to sleep in bunkbeds, hike in the mountains and do the high ropes course. I will admit to one little fear I have: I am afraid that I might not have lost enough weight to fit into the harness for the high ropes course. I'm optimistic, but I am going into it with a prepared attitude. It won't destroy me if I can't.

3. The weather has been BEAUTIFUL here lately.

We've had a better October then August and September. I've been taking advantage of it by going for walks down to the river with the kids and lots of park time. It's still pretty cold in the mornings, but that's just because I'm a crazy lady that runs while it's dark outside.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Thanksgiving dinner

This past weekend was Canadian Thanksgiving. A lot of people have the the turkey dinner whichever day of the 3 day weekend works best for them and their family. I know people that attended a big dinner every day. Holidays are often used as an excuse to indulge. For some people, that works. For others, a day of indulgence turns into a week, which turns into a season.

I am one of the others. I've learned that about myself and there is no point in trying to pretend that I am a naturally thin person that can occasionally gorge as long as I eat well the rest of the time. When I start eating sugary treats and large portions, I have trouble stopping. For me, a holiday is not enough of a reason to just let go.

I only had one big dinner to attend and it was on Sunday. That was 10-10-10, so it was the day that I had my own little fitness challenge. I've said it before, but I don't exercise to lose weight. I train to get better at my sports. Having said that, being active helps keep me in a better mindset for how I'm eating, putting me at an advantage going in.

I also planned ahead. I offered to bring desert. For one, I am very good at making deserts, so I knew I could do something everyone would like. The main reason though, is that it gave me control over what would be the most tempting part of the meal for me. I made an apple pie and a crustless pumpkin pie. I enjoy making pastry, and let's be honest, people expect apple pie. Pumpkin pie is a comparatively healthy choice, as long as you leave off the crust.

I followed through on my plan to eat moderately. I had large helpings of salad, carrots and broccoli (skipping the yummy looking cheese sauce). I also had small helpings of turkey with cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes with gravy and stuffing. I resisted getting seconds and finished the meal off with my crustless pumpkin pie, passing up the apple pie with the perfectly made crust.

Would I eat dinner like this every night? No. Some of those foods spell trouble for me and trigger cravings, particularly the mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce. It was a special night though, and I still stayed within my calorie range for the day. I've been watching my sugar intake very closely for a couple days now, as even the small amounts I had are sometimes enough to trigger my system to demand more.

As we enter the season of indulgence and gluttony, I plan to continue approaching it with moderation. My house won't be filled with Christmas baking, and Halloween candies will get sent off to my husband's work. It's a matter of finding the balance between will power and avoidance.

What's your plan for the upcoming holidays?

Monday, October 11, 2010

A letter to obesity

Dear Obesity,

We've spent a lot of years together.

I started flirting with you in my early twenties, then entered a relationship with you a few years later. You were there during some of the happiest moments of my life. You were there the day I met my husband. I left you for a while after that, but not long after my wedding day, I came back.

You were there for the birth of both my children and the early years of their life. For most of my five years of marriage, you've been along for the ride.

You hurt me.

Your presence made me question my self worth. Your presence caused me significant physical pain. You made my pregnancies miserable. You gave me trouble breathing and walking.

You were abusive and you threatened my life.

I have left you and I am never coming back.

I've joined your cousin Overweight for a period of time. Feel free to let her know that my stay will be brief. You, on the other hand will never see me again.

Goodbye Obesity.

Stay away from me forever.

This morning I weighed in at 211.4 for a weekly loss of 2.8 and a total loss of 32.4. My BMI is now 29.5, meaning I am overweight. No longer obese.

Sunday, October 10, 2010


So, today the date is 10/10/10, which is pretty cool. Earlier this week, I decided that I would run 10km today. My training plan called for it anyways; I just had to make sure it fell today.

This morning, I was making apple pie (Happy thanksgiving!) and the thought occurred to me. There's 3 tens in today's date, not just one. Why not do 10 x 3? 10 km run, 10 km bike ride and 10 laps at the pool.

So, despite today being a busy day, I ran the idea past my husband. Then I left the house for my run while he stayed behind to watch the children and the pie.

I ran my 10 km, the second time I've done this distance. Today was easier, although that was probably due to it being a flatter route then last time. When I got back home, I wasn't nearly as exhausted as a week ago.

I then whipped up a quick crustless pumpkin pie and put it in the oven, again leaving my husband to watch it cook. In order to do double time, I rode my bike to the pool, doing a couple extra little loops on the way there. I got about 6.2 km on the way to the pool.

I then went in and hopped in the pool for my 10 laps. 10 laps is pretty doable for me. In fact, I never swim that few with my regular swim training. Having said that, after the run and bike ride, I was feeling a bit more drained then usual. I lost track a couple times, so I may have done lap 6 and lap 8 twice. After 10 (12?) laps, I hopped out of the pool, dried off, dressed and got back on my bike.

I headed home. This part of the bike ride was more of a cool down but I did concentrate on getting my heart rate up a few times. When I was approaching home, I realized I was going to be short by about half a kilometer, so I turned another way to add in a bit extra. In the end I managed to get 10.49 km on the bike ride.

So, I've now celebrated 10-10-10 in my own way. This evening, I'll be heading to my brother's house to celebrate Thanksgiving. While there, I'll enjoy a moderate portion of turkey and side dishes, then I'll finish it off with a small piece of crustless pumpkin pie.

Happy Thanksgiving to all the other Canadians, and happy 10-10-10 to everyone!

Friday, October 8, 2010

A questionnaire

Kenz, over on All The Weigh posted a questionnaire that's making it's way around the blogosphere. I thought the questions were great and decided to answer them here as well.

1. What was your highest weight, what do you weigh right now and what is your goal weight?

My highest ever weight was at the end of my first pregnancy - 285 pounds. My highest non-pregnant weight (not counting the 6 weeks after pregnancy) was 255 pounds. I started this leg of the journey at 243.8 and I currently weight 214.2

My primary goal is to enter a healthy weight range, which for me will be 179 pounds. I plan to get down to 170 and then reassess to decide whether to lose more or stay there.

2. What is your #1 motivation for losing weight?

I want to be healthy. I want to be able to be active. I want to be able to do a marathon and an ironman without fearing my body failing. I want to live to see my grandchildren and great grandchildren. I want to be able to play with and chase my children grandchildren and great grandchildren.

3. Have you always been overweight?

No, but I always thought I was. I vividly remember a doctor's appointment when I was less then 10, and the doctor had said I was "chubby". I was fairly thin in my early teens, but then I started gaining.

4. When you want to give up what inspires you to keep going?

Truthfully, that is one of the things that is different about this time. I have never wanted to give up. Sure, there's times when I want to let myself have a donut or something, but I have always known that this is for good. If I slip, it doesn't mean I've failed. It means I pick up and carry on.

5. What is the #1 thing you look forward to when you hit your goal weight?

Well, my husband is giving me a $1000 shopping spree to buy new clothes. But, if I'm honest, I'm looking forward to having done it. To having accomplished the weight loss and being in a position of moving into weight maintenance.

6. Do you have support on your weight loss journey?

Absolutely. My husband is number 1. My friends and family have been endlessly supportive. My blogging buddies keep me going.

7. What is your favorite exercise?

Well, technically, I've sworn off exercise. If I were to pick my favourite activity though, I think running wins by a hair. Of course, once I feel more competent as a swimmer, that might edge into first place. Then again, a better bike might make me love that the most.

I'm a triathlete in training. I don't have to pick one. ;)

8. What is the most important thing you have learned on your weight loss journey?

It's not about what my body looks like. It's about what my body can do.

9. What is one thing you have given up that you miss the most?

I'd like to say I don't miss anything. That the rewards have been worth it. That is true, but if I'm honest, I miss being able to be oblivious. When I didn't have to count everything. I miss being able to eat whenever I'm hungry.

10. What is your strategy for losing weight?

I track everything I eat on I keep my calories around the 1800 mark. This seems a bit high compared to many plans, but I am extremely active and when I stick to this, I consistently lose 1-2 pounds a week.

I found answering these questions to be a great exercise in self reflection. The answers came easily to me, which I hope means I'm focused. ;) If any of you answer the questions, let me know, as I'd love to read them as well.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Three things Thursday

1. I was invited to a cookie exchange this week.

So it begins... The season. Canadian Thanksgiving is this weekend, and it marks the start of a season of indulgence. In previous years, I was browsing my cookbooks by now to plan out which decadent treats I would create. We have to remember that Christmas is December 25. It's a day, not a season.

I politely declined the invitation. I don't need 10 varieties of cookies in my house.

2. I am officially a regular at the pool now.

The pool staff no longer asks to see my pass when I show up to swim. I say hi to the lifeguards. I chat with all the other regulars. I'm recognized and I belong there.

3. Produce handlers should treat fruit with more respect.

I went grocery shopping yesterday and wanted to buy some apples. Every single apple I looked at had bruises on it. Every one. Ridiculous. I have watched grocery store workers dumping fruit or literally tossing it into piles. I have no doubt that this is what happened this time. Not okay! I want unbruised apples.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Help me make my blog better

I've decided that it's time for me to invest a bit of time in my blog, so I'd like to pose the question to you:

What would you like to see on my blog?

I have a few things that I think are obvious. They are:

1. Before, progress and eventually after pictures.
2. A blogroll - some of you have been kind enough to put me on yours. I'm very appreciative and would like to start returning the favour. :)
3. A list of completed and upcoming races that I'm doing.
4. An about me section

So, what am I missing? When you go to a new blog, what are the first things you look at to find out more about the blogger?

Monday, October 4, 2010

Weekly weigh in and a conversation with Spud about running

This week I weighed in at 214.2 for a weekly loss of 1.6 and a total loss of 29.6. I'm almost at that 30 pound mark!

It was a good week. I tracked and I trained. I struggled with a couple of my runs and nailed a couple others. I hit 10km in my training this week. To be quite honest, it was a real challenge. I'm trying to figure out my nutrition with those longer runs and I don't quite have it down yet. If I eat too much before, I feel sick while running. If I don't eat enough, I get dizzy and can't keep going. And, this is only at 10km. Eventually I'll be doing much more, so I need to figure out the foods that work for me.

What do you eat before your runs?

Now, on to a conversation I had with my 3.5 year old son...

Me: Sweetie, I'm going for a run now, so I'm going to be gone for a bit.

Spud: I wanna go for a run too Mommy.

Me: Oh, I know you do, and you're a really good runner, but you're a bit too small and Mommy's a lot bigger.

Spud: I'm not small. I'm a big boy Mommy.

Me: You're right Spud. Mommy shouldn't have called you small. You are a big boy. It's just that Mommy runs really fast.

Spud: Me too.

Me: I know. But, it's getting a bit late at night and Mommy's a lot older then you. How about we go for a run together another day?

Spud: Okay.

I don't try to push the running on him, but he sees me go out to do it often enough. When we're out for bike/chariot rides, he often informs me that he's going to run instead. Last week, he ran for a solid 0.5km. I'm just waiting until there's a chance to put him in a kids' fun run. I think he'll love it.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Okay. Gross.

So, while reading a discussion on a forum, I've recently discovered a not so pretty thing about triathlons.

Apparently, there is a large number of triathletes who, when they need to pee, will just do it.

That's right. While running or biking. You stand up on your bike while coasting, and just let it go.

I guess I'm looking at this from a perspective of somebody that never expects to place, but ewwwwww. I think, even when I'm doing an ironman, I will take the time to either stop at a porta potty or the very least the side of the road.

If the potential penalty for drafting on the bike wasn't enough, this is a very real reason to respect the no-drafting rule.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Do you need to be hungry to lose weight?

A lot of the diets out there will tell you that you should never let yourself be hungry. You should always eat before you reach that point. Fill up on low calorie foods, vegetables and the like...

Does this really work?

After losing my first 15-20 pounds, I went through quite a few months where the scale just didn't move. I was eating healthy, mostly unprocessed foods. I might even be able to say that I was eating intuitively. It worked fabulously for maintaining my weight, but I wasn't losing anything. So, why is that?

Perhaps because I never let myself be hungry?

The thing is, our bodies survive by sending us signals as to what they think they need. One thing our bodies try to do is maintain their current weight. There's a lot of buzz in the blogger world about intuitive eating and to be honest, I just don't get it. If I eat intuitively, I am going to be feeding my body whenever it's hungry. My body is going to send me signals that it needs food (and then I'll be hungry) whenever it enters a calorie deficit.

You need a calorie deficit to lose weight.

There's tricks out there. Weight watchers has their list of filling foods. You might hear advice to drink tea or munch on celery...

I'm not fooled by that.

Seriously. I am enough in touch with my body that, if I'm physically hungry, tea or celery doesn't change that. Until I throw some calories in there, I still feel hungry. Those things may help when I'm feeling emotional hunger, or I'm just feeling munchy, but not when I'm truly physically hungry.

In order to stay in my calorie range, I will be hungry, and I'm coming to accept that. In fact, I think being this in touch is a good thing. When the time does come to maintain my weight and I'm training hard for triathlons, it should help me to know when I genuinely need more fuel for my workouts.

Until then, in order to lose a modest amount of weight each week (1-2 pounds), I have to feel a modest amount of hunger.