Run, Fat Girl! Run!

So yesterday marked the 27th meeting with my awesome personal trainer, Karen. It was supposed to be my last (12 sessions followed by 3 sessions followed by 12 sessions) because though I've made great progress in my form and endurance, my asthma is pretty well under control, I've experienced a decrease in the number of migraines I get any given monty, and I'm very rarely sick; my two major goals of losing weight and getting into a running routine remain unattained. My weight has not budged a bit since last year, which I guess is good I suppose as it had been creeping up steadily since I got married. "You're nesting!" my friend LeeBob told me a couple of years ago. "That's so sweet!!"

I've examined where I can cut costs during this time of economic uncertainty and have determined that Karen is indespensible. Both her and Shannon keep me positive, refuse to let me get down on myself, and never show the least bit of disappointment when I fail to make progress. Without getting too melancholy I can tell you that I have had YEARS of letting myself get so down that I can't see the light from the hole I crawled in through from above - a very safe but very lonely and sad place I can tell you. I think I still have my foot near the hole in case I need to make a quick escape - old habits die hard - but I'm wholly out of it now. Besides, I probably wouldn't fit.

Though I do miss the endless supply of Portillo's cheese fries I kept stashed in there. mmmmmmmmmmmmmcheeeeeeeeeeeeese friiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiesssss.....

It goes without saying that I loveloveLOVE to be home with Shannon, but there's no excuse for my not taking advantage of the multiple paths and running tracks that surround our home for an hour or so a day, maybe a bit more at the weekend. I have running gear for all seasons. My ORANGE!!! Asics running shoes - sold to me by Fleet Feet - are incredibly light and supportive and comfortable. I have a heart rate monitor and a Nike + chip. My 5+ hours "ORANGE!!!! Running Mix!!!" is loaded on three iPods - each of which is outfitted with a running clip of some sort. I spent several weeks compiling that running mix, carefully choosing songs from running playlists posted on the Webbersphere, listening to months upon months of backissues of IndieFeed and CB3 Radio Songs of the Day in order to find fresh new tunes to infuse into my tired old playlists; and, more recently, bellying up to the iTunes Genius Bar to see what songs I might like based on songs currently in my library.

I have. The most awesome. Playlist.

Which I have used exactly twice since I created it.

I'm not sure why I'm having such a hard time getting started. It's like I've hit The Wall before even getting out the door.

So I spoke with Karen about it and asked her how she keeps going, how she picks herself out of a slump or recovers after a break in her routine. (I imagine a break in Karen's routine would be, like, a month on a cruise ship. That might set her back, like, two days. The flu might set her back a week. On the other hand, hitting the "SNOOZE" button on my alarm clock ONCE resulting in a day skipped at the gym can set me back 3 and a half months.)

One excellent point she made is I tend to set my expectations too high. If I imagine myself running - and enjoying running - a marathon in 6 weeks, I'm probably not going to make much progress. Unlike Simon Pegg in Run, Fatboy! Run! I'd do best to set reasonable goals and think LONG TERM rather than my usual "Well! I ran three blocks today! I think I'll treat myself to a Starbucks, a Venti mocha, I think, and a 4-piece fried chicken meal at Popeye's to congratulate myself on a job well done!"

I. Cannot. Eat. Fried foods. Or ice cream. Or buttery stuff. Or cheese fries. I. Just. Can't. Even if I limit the portion size (which in itself is hard), there are some foods that simply make me gain weight, even if I only have them once in a while. I have gotten into the habit of slacking off at the weekend when I'm usually pretty good during the week. Eating whatever I want at the weekend can undo the entire week's progress and then I'm back at square one. [insert Elton John's song from The Lion King here]

Today is, how you say, not so busy at work so I've been catching up on my Runner's World magazine. Well, it's the October issue so I guess I'm not too far behind, though I think they've sent out issues through, like, April, 2009. I KNOW I have at least one or two more at home. On page 88 is a quote from a guy in Ohio by the name of Chris Beck:

"I've never regretted going for a run, but I have regretted skipping one."

I'm ALWAYS REGRETTING skipping a run. Or a trip to the gym. I have to stop regretting and (not to sound like a Nike ad, but all the same:) just do it. Even if I look like Simon Pegg did at the beginning of Run, Fatboy! Run! for a few weeks. Incidentally Karen loved that movie. I've recommended she see Brad Pitt's trainer character in Burn After Reading next.

This is SO ME, down to the "I'm RUNNING!" grin and the BOWIE!! shirt at the start of a run:

....1/2 block later:

Okay, you'd never catch me running in those shorts. I'm just a bit more modest. But one day I'd love to be able to wear one of those cute running skirts!


Mu said...

Use your Nike + as a motivator. I just made it to 100 miles total on my account today, and I was miffed when I was sick for 10 days because I was only six miles from that goal. It works really well as a motivator.

I *love* most of my runs. Around 1:00 in the afternoon, I start thinking how much I'd rather be running right then, even though I like my job. I can miss a single run, but I get twitchy if I miss two in a row. Stick with it. That is my recharge time - I love being on the trails. Good luck!

Shannon said...

Ahhhh! I love the pic of DA BOOBIE! Such dopey looking birds.

Lift weights 3 times a week and do cardio 3 times a week and you'll be on your way in no time! Since yer man is looking to do the same, hopefully we'll encourage each other.

'Scuse me while I find some fudge to eat...

Naomi Jane said...

JoJo, three blocks is awesome as are you and if that hole ever comes a callin', you tell it to call me first! I SO hear you about the running wall (nice wall pic, by the way!). It's so true about the baby steps, and I'm a firm believer in all forms of rewards -- so, if not food...orange nail polish, orange pocket knife, orange boots --orange possibilities are endless...
p.s. I so want to check out your running mix! It sounds AMAZING!

OrangeMoJoJo said...

Mu, that's a great idea - using the Nike+ as a motivator. I should start wearing my heart rate monitor every day, too (feels so good when I get the little trophy at the end of a week when I've hit my goal "calories burned").

I used to loveloveLOVE running. I mean, this is YEARS ago, but I'd run before school, to school, then up to 15 miles per day after school. Loved it. Which is why it's all the more frustrating that I'm finding I'm having such a hard time getting back into it. I KNOW that once I get going I'll be looking forward to my run. Granted, the asthma has slowed me down, but I've already proved I can get past that. Maybe I won't be running 15 miles per day, but I'll take what I can get!

OrangeMoJoJo said...

It is true that the ORANGE!!! reward possibilities are endless! What a fabulous idea: orange nails - something that will last for a week - in lieu of a savory treat that will stay in my tummy for an hour!

I had my nails done yesterday (gels) so they're long and black for Halloween. (o;<