Thursday, October 18, 2007

Thinking things through

I'm not sure why I feel so blah today. Perhaps it's the cloud cover, although we could surely use some rain here in the Middle of Nowhere. I dreamt a lot last night; none of them were the pleasant variety, so I'm still tired.

Maybe it's because the training schedule says "Tempo Run" for today.

I [and probably thousands of other newbie runners] am not fond of tempo runs. Or speed drills. Or intervals. Or fartleks [which are supposed to be fun, damn it!]. I'm more of a plod along for miles and miles newbie, rather than the super-motivated, bust-your-ass kind. Built for distance, not for speed – that would be me.

So instead of driving seven miles to get to a flat road where I can work on revving up my engine, I'm going to stick to my hilly home road. I'll run as much as I can and walk or jog fast when I need to slow it down and my goal is to do this seven miles in 85 minutes. Which would be the fastest I've ever done it.

Now that I've written it down and announced it to both of you, I might feel a bit more motivation to actually step up the tempo when I'm out there.

Although, have you noticed that when we write that we've gained a couple pounds, or missed our target time, or eaten poorly or just plain fell down in our plan, that no one challenges us? No one says, "Hey – what were you thinking?" We don't want to seem rude or unsupportive, especially to virtual pals, so we remain cheerleaders when maybe, maybe, what we need is to be virtually slapped around.

But maybe, maybe, that's just me. What do you think? Would you be offended if someone said you should think things through to their logical conclusion?

That's something I need to print out in 120-point type and post in the kitchen, I think. Because I know if I looked ahead to how I'd feel tomorrow, I'd surely not eat whatever tempting thing is in the pantry tonight.



Lori said...

I've wondered that myself. Are we sometimes enabling others? But then I thought about how I feel when I do screw up and to be honest, I can really put myself through the wringer. It's not the same as challenging myself. It's finger pointing, pure and simple.

I think you'd have to be careful to write something that's challenging but not accusatory or blaming. (If that makes sense.)

I know I'm guilty of being a cheerleader but I also know from my own experience that I'm more liable to see the negative in what I do rather than the positive. And I have a way of not seeing the positive even when I've binged (as in, "well, you had 3 100-calorie bags of cookies as opposed to what you used to binge on." So when I write positive messages, it's because I figure that person is already beating themselves up and they're not seeing the improvements that we see.

I guess it would depend on the person and what they are doing exactly. And, given this medium, we have to remember that we're only reading what someone writes. We don't know what else is going on behind the scenes.

I hope you have a good run today. It's a bit overcast and blah here on this side of the mountain.

Grumpy Chair said...

I just had that same conversation several weeks ago with Lori. I think we all say "Don't beat yourself up too bad because you (Fill in the sinful blank)", when we all know those behaviors are what prevent weightloss or destroy good healthy habits we have established.

Please feel free to kick my bum (like "what were you thinking buying Halloween candy on October 1st!!!).

Anne M. said...

I can use someone kicking my butt - and I need it now and then. But at the same time, I usually know what I did and if I'm feeling horrible about it, having someone kick my butt might push me over the edge into the gingersnap bag, even if I have to go out and buy it.

So I'm careful with others because I don't want to push them into feeling worse if it means not doing anything about it. But sometimes, yeah, that "why did you think buying Halloween candy now was a good idea?" is the question to ask.

Good post.

Laura N said...

Gosh, I do hate speed runs too. I haven't done one in ages... too lazy I suppose. BUT, there was an article in some fitness mag that said one of the best ways to lose weight is to kick up the intensity at intervals to really burn calories and bust lard. For me, right now in my running life, I run fast when I feel it, if I'm having a good run and feeling inspired--then I'll sprint as far and as fast as I can.

I think it's hard to bitch slap someone that you only know through internet posts. You just never know how vulnerable they are, and what if your words aren't helpful but hurtful? But, hey, if you need a good slapping, just let us know and we'll pour that on, too. We're nothing if not accommodating. ;-)~

Good luck on your 7 miler.

PastaQueen said...

When I read lori's comment I thought she'd eating a 3100 calorie bag of cookies instead of three 100 calorie bags. I was like, damn, if that's not bad what did she *used* to binge on?

Which goes to my second point that when you comment on a blog it's easy to be misunderstood. None of the paralanguage comes through, the tone of voice and facial expressions that can change words from kind to mean. Which is one of the reasons I think it's difficult to leave a "kick in the pants" comment because you never now what tone of voice the blogger is going to read it in. It could sound really harsh when you mean for it to be encouraging.

I think it also depends on who is leaving the comment. If it is an old friend, I'm less likely to get mad because I know they just care about me. But if it's some stranger I usually just want to tell them to piss off.

Lori said...

Oh, you made me look up nutritional information. I probably have had 3100 calorie cookie binges in the past based on what I discovered.

You'd have to eat 56 Oreos to get the 3100 calorie mark. My fav was Vienna fingers and it only took 40 cookies to get to the 3100 mark. I could easily do 20 in an evening. Ugh. So I have made progress....

Mary Gee said...

I know I don't want to get beat up on my blog. So I don't do it to others either. Most of us know what we should be doing...