From Scale to Zen

This needs to be said:

I’ve been an idiot about weight loss.

For the past couple of months, I’ve been exercising 5-7 days a week and not eating enough calories. Although I wasn’t always conscious of it, I’ve been eating based on the number on the scale. If it was high in the morning, I ate less that day, if it was low, I would allow myself more food.

You know where this leads?

Absolutely no where.

I’m done with daily weighing. For the first six-ish months of my weight loss journey, I was a firm believer in the once a week weigh-ins. NO EXCEPTIONS.

Somewhere along the way, it became twice a week and then overtime developed into a full blown obsession with the scale.

But I’m breaking free of that. It doesn’t work. It puts the focus on a number when I absolutely know better that that’s not where my focus should be.

This week, I exercised WAY less and ate consistently more. And…well you can see the results below.

I’ve been obsessed with reading the blog Zen Habits for the past week or two, and it’s really helped me put my head in the right place.

If you’re not aware of Zen Habits, do yourself a favor and check it out. The blog is written by Leo Babauta, who has a bazillion kids, lives in California and changed his life one habit at a time. Among his accomplishments are a 70-pound weight loss, becoming a runner and transforming his passion into a business. He’s written a book or two and is pretty much my life idol.

His blog is my absolutely my go-to reading source for positive inspiration.

Ok, enough gushing. Shall we talk injury?

I went to the orthopedist yesterday, and he told me exactly what everyone else has been telling me: REST.

Except this time, I’m listening.

The good news is that my x-rays showed healthy bones. The bad news is that for a minimum of two weeks, I can not run, walk, elliptical, bike, climb an excessive amount of stairs, or do lunges or squats.

Am I bummed? YES. Cardio for me is a sure source of endorphins, a no-fail happiness booster and what I scheduled my day around. I planned my cardio activities at night, and looked forward to getting sweaty when I woke up in the morning.

I’m trying not to get too down about it, but I’d be lying if I said the frustration over being injured wasn’t getting to me. I tried to be smart about running. I stretched, I wore compression sleeves, I got fitted for sneakers, I iced, I didn’t run two days in a row, I cross trained…and I still got hurt. I feel like I failed in some way, but I know most runners get injured at one time or another.

My plan for the next two weeks is to work on core and upper body strength, two areas where I am SEVERELY lacking, and, if my shins feel better, attempt a SHORT run with lots of walk breaks.

The doc said as soon as I feel pain I should stop running, and if I immediately feel pain when I begin running again, then he would think about doing an MRI on my shins. He also suggested that I get orthodics made because I have flat feet. But those cost a lot of money, so we’ll see.

I know two weeks doesn’t sound like a lot of time, but running has changed my life in so many unbelievable ways that I could have never expected. It’s been a huge confidence booster. By running, I’ve proven to myself that I can be someone who follows through and accomplishes their goals and doesn’t quit. I guess I’ve always thought of myself as someone who wasn’t motivated, but running has changed that.

I know taking this time to rest will eventually allow me to return to running, but I’m having a really over-dramatic sense of loss right now.

Oh man, this post is all sorts of rambly and has a severe lack of pictures.

It’s time….The numbers:

Starting weight: 243

Last week: 172

This week: 170

Change: -2

Total loss: 73

 

Me? Stubborn?

Yesterday I ran a 5K race against the advice of everyone that I knew.

Yet it didn’t surprise anyone that I was going to push through the shin pain I’ve been having to run.

“You’re stubborn,” my trainer said very matter-of-fact like in his thick Peruvian accent.

No one. ever. has described be as stubborn…..in regard to WANTING to run.

Sure, I was stubborn in high school when I refused to even TRY to run the required mile in gym class.

My, things have changed.

So let’s talk about this shin pain then.

It’s not shin splints. The pain has become very localized. I can point to an exact spot where the pain is coming from and my lower leg has been throbbing on and off for days, even through prior to the race I cut down my activity to ZERO. Oddly enough, the pain goes away after I run for a few minutes, and I was able to make it through the race without thinking about my shins.

My trainer poked around my leg a bit on Saturday and there was definitely one very tender spot. It also hurts more than normal when I foam roll over my left calf.

So in an effort not to be completely stupid, I’m taking a break from running. And seeing a doctor to (hopefully) rule out a stress fracture.

I’m trying not to be too upset…but it’s hard because I was really starting to LOVE running. The feeling of pushing myself past my limits, following a training plan and the rush of endorphins that lasted for hours.

My rational self knows that right now rest is the best thing for my body. So rest I will.

In other news, I will have a race recap…but it’s going to have to wait, because I’m actually writing about the race for my job. I can’t wait to share it!

I'm probably asking a very important question in this photo.

Credit to Bill Smithuysen for capturing the awkward moment where I’m interviewing the president of the Waldwick Chamber of Commerce.

Hope everyone else is having an injury-free Monday!