February 14, 2014

Whole 30: Day 25

It's interesting, facing yet another candy-focused holiday and yet this time, having measures in place to make sure that I don't partake at all, let alone overindulge. I'm glad we're doing the Whole 30 now. I know I would let myself go nuts with the excuse of "oh, but it's Valentine's Day." It's just another day. What I want more than candy is to reach my goals.

In lieu of unhealthy sweets and a heavy meal in a restaurant, I'm making coconut chicken tenders for dinner with a spicy mango dip. If the recipe comes out well, I will share it tomorrow.

For now, I want to talk about last night, and the race expo.

We went to the convention center and walked around a bit, getting information on local races and seeing what kind of events will be going on soon. We looked at the course map for this weekend's marathon and half marathon, commented on how truly not scenic it is (especially compared to Chicago), and scouted out places for us to go and cheer with our signs.

We wandered down towards the products for sale, and Matt looked around at shirts and socks. I looked around in a general sense, eyes just panning from one side of the room to the other. And things got blurry, and my heart raced, and my breathing got heavy. My eyes welled up with tears. I suddenly felt very overwhelmed, and had to take Noah's stroller and walk away.

Matt asked if I was alright, and I denied anything repeatedly. Truth is, though, I really wasn't fine.

I'm still so anxious about running. It's hard to put it into words, really.

I used to love it. Then I didn't. And I managed to fall back in love with it and then go on to run a half marathon. But now, I'm back to not loving it. Almost hating it, really. I did the first two weeks of Couch to 5K, but have not ran in a week or so. I just don't have the passion that I had last time. There's no drive. It mostly depresses me now.

As we kept walking around the expo, Matt got an idea of what was going on.

You know, I couldn't run one right now either.

But still, he looks like he could. He is much closer to a healthy weight range than I am. He looks toned, active.

And I remember California, and the women from the book club who, when discussing Garmins and I offered my input, asked what I used mine for. Because of course I couldn't have been a runner.

I was 70 pounds lighter then. How must I look now?

And I remember California, and the person who defended me, who stood up for me and called me beautiful - who called me an athlete. And suddenly, the sadness about weight gain is also swirling around residual hurt feelings over how that relationship ended. And the pain compounds, the anxiety swells, and I retreat into myself.

I'm anxious about running because I associate it so much with California, and because everything about that year still hurts. Almost two years after I left, the wounds are far too raw still. I have been trying to let it go, especially as my life has moved forward and wonderful things have come my way. I am only now becoming fully aware of the lessons I was meant to learn as a result of the experiences that year.

I don't know what needs to happen in order for me to rediscover my passions, or for me to finally make peace with everything that year brought with it. It was a whirlwind, or more like a tornado. Intoxicating and glorious and devastating. Most of all, though, in the grand scheme of things, it was brief, and I truly believe that I will flourish again, once I am finally able to find closure and come to terms with the fact that that chapter of my life is now distantly removed from where I am now and my present situation.


LynnieG said...

Thanks for sharing your experience. It hits home. I'm 49. Married 23 years. Overweight my WHOLE life. No boyfriends before my husband. Sometimes I'm overwhelmed with sad feelings of relationships and experiences I never had. I know I should live in the moment and see everything I have and forget about something I might have missed out on 25 years ago - but the damage is deep. I'm not telling you this to make you feel there's no hope, just that you're not alone. Peace.

Rae said...

I'm not sure what to say except you are not alone. I think that my battle with weight and image will go on forever. I'm in the midlands and the ice storm sent me into a near panic because I would lose running days. Or slip and hurt myself and then gain 92 pounds (previously lost) in a magic instant. Irrational but the emotional pain and fear are real. But everyday I look for motivation. I log my meals and excersise. You are not alone. You CAN do it. You might just do it anothelr way this time. But I do hope and pray that you find joy in the "race" that is as you know, a marathon. God bless!

PJ Geek said...

I always connect with your blogs because we started at the same weight...we are now at about the same weight (mine is not through pregnancy). I understand where you are at reading this and the athlete post. I wanted to share this because it made me think of something for you.
I hit my lowest wt in 20 + years a few years ago and ran a 5k which meant practicing 5ks a lot. I had never run before and I was still a big girl. But I was amazed at it. I identified as an athlete. I liked the look and feel of workout clothing and scheduling workouts-sometimes 2 a day and sweating. After I ran my race, the very weekend I hit my lowest wt, I went shopping and bought 'real' women sizes -not plus sizes. I think I was a bit freaked out by that-the choices. And I wanted to eat and enjoy food. I started gaining and struggling with food. I also had some injuries, I had to go through physical therapy and start over with exercise. I wasn't as fit. And I gained about 60 pounds in the time since then.

There is a lot more to it, but I miss running but don't think it is right for me. I focus on enjoying myself and building myself up. I am thinking of walking a 5K and that will take training as I need to build y endurance to walk that distance. I have knee / hip issues just from a life of obesity.

Meanwhile, I zumba and wt train and yoga and walk and just do gym workouts.I still identify as an athlete. I like the look.

Maybe you won't run a race this year, but maybe you can fall in love with spending me time exercising or family time exercising. Increase your overall fitness doing squats and planks and push ups or wt training. Maybe find a new sport. Maybe try a cross fit class. Sc is a beautiful state. Find some cute little towns or parks or beach to do walks on, there's even hiking nearby, push Noah in a buggy and stop and do some pushups or jumping jacks. Load new music on a device.

I guess I'm encouraging both you AND me to fall in love with the feeling of being an athlete. Practice makes perfect. Change the environment, Change the clothes, change the music, change the workout, change your attitude. I look forward to reading about it.

Frickin' Fabulous at 40 said...

I know what you're feeling. My knee had been acting up after my half in October. It was OK for me for the November half, but a treadmill run 3 weeks ago really frigged it up. It feels fine now. I'm afraid to run and find out the injury is still there. My pace has been shot over the last year due to some weight gain and under training and I feel like crap about it. That makes me want to eat. It's a vicious cycle. If you ever need to talk, I'm here for you!

Anonymous said...

The battle with weight is a long, drawn out battle but it can be won. Please don't believe you are alone, or that it will go on forever - this isn't so. Keep pushing forward, seek help if you need it AND never give up :)


Anonymous said...

We all go through setbacks like this, but just try to stay positive and keep pushing on and you'll be back to form in no time :)