I knew how the scale would look before I even stepped on it today. My face looked bloated and wrinkled, my lips cracked and salty with the flavor of road salt, my stomach and butt extra jiggly when I walk, this week I even had to loosen my belt, and found it more difficult to cross my legs. My joints ached like an old lady, and the ache in my achilles tendon, which I thought I was well rid of, returned with a vengence, souring my mood and threatening to keep me from running.
After feeling like that, and seeing a 162 on the scale, I headed to the cardio room to see about running a bit. I got a good stretch in, and started slow. Then I figured, what is the point if I don't push myself? So I ran intervals at my usual pace and elevation. It felt like it took so much more energy than usual, and I even had to walk after 13 minutes, due to an irritation in my bad knee. I was entirely unimpressed with myself, but not defeated by any means. It just leaves a lot of room for improvement.
My husband and I do not recognize Christmas, and only celebrate to appease our families/coworkers, but it was a pleasant enough weekend. We had a lot of family time together, which equated to eating a lot of junk food and having some drinks. While I didn't go overboard with the alcohol ( I had 3 rum drinks on each Friday and Saturday evening) it doesn't take a lot to make me feel lousy the next day. I think this was the greatest source of my joints aching, because that wasn't an issue before this weekend. It has me thinking about inflamation, and thinking I may research the anti-inflamatory diet to see if it is something I could maintain. For now, I just need to get my normal sensible-carb diet back on track and focus on rehydration!
My favorite part of this Christmas season? At my celebration yesterday, my step-sister-in-law (my husband's step sister) came to me and asked me how I had lost so much weight, and said that she just found out that she is pre-diabetic and has been ordered to lose weight. Telling her about the South Beach Diet and my journey triggered something really magical in me, rejuvinating my resolve and reinspiring my to keep up the good fight. I found myself, as I have done in the past, focusing on her very round stomach, but this time, so excited for her to start her own journey and to see her progress. It also brought out a bit of the competetive side of me, as I secretly vowed to get back on track and kick some serious booty, so that by the time I see next Christmas, I should be at goal weight, looking and feeling like a force to be reckoned with. I seriously hope she can find a diet that works for her and stick to it, I am seriously pulling for her, heart issues run in her family and even though she is a few years younger than me, has been on blood pressure and cholesterol meds for more than a decade already. It will be interesting to see what developes. She seems very willful, which can be a huge help or hinderance, depending on the mindset.
We also talked about running, as her brother ran a 5K a few years back, and we talked about me considering running one this spring. The only reason I haven't fully committed to doing it is because I am sort of waiting to see what this knee of mine is going to do. If I have a slight irritation while running, that is one thing. Last spring/summer when I was running, the pain didn't set in until after I ran, and then it lasted for days, feeling like something was going to tear when I went down a set of stairs. Not good. But, one of my gifts was a generous gift card for a department store that among all sorts of other things, sells serious running shoes. It should cover the better portion of a good pair for me, and I am more excited than ever to keep running and challenging myself. One of my step-in-laws asked me if I was ever going to try a full marathon and I reacted as I always do, "No way! That's not for me. I'm too old and not that interested in running. It bothers my knees." Then I realized that I was making exscuses so as not to have to really push myself. True, I am not planning on running a marathon, or even a half, and the knees are a valid exscuse. But saying I will never do one is a little absurd. Why limit myself to just a 5K? Right now, running 3 miles is doable. Not easy, but doable. The thought of 13 miles seems nearly impossible to me. But I know if I trained for it, building up slowly, I could do it. And the same is true of a full marathon. If I invested the time and effort into training, I could do it. I don't have the desire to do that right now, so it isn't something I will devote a lot of time or thought to, but it made me aware of my rigidity in mindset in that one area, and made me wonder what else I might be passing up due to outdated ideas of what I am capable of. Running a 5K in the first place was a departure from that rigid mindset, there are many more things to explore and I am excited to find out what they will be.
I may be able to sneak out for lunch today, to get my hands on some new running shoes, and see if they make a difference in my knees. If I get them today, it will be nearly impossible for me not to run tomorrow, to try them out, though at this point I try not to run two days in a row. Time will tell. My customer flow at work might prevent me from leaving, and it may have to wait until later in the week. For now, I need to do a little research into what type of shoe I want to get.
I go back to college in less than a month, and I feel really ready for that new chapter to begin. As I said in an earlier post, as soon as I opened the door just a crack, the universe rushed in. Despite the challenges, this has already been the most rewarding journey. So much so, that I almost feel sorry for skinny people who have never had to go through it. How absurd is that?! My journey began due to a bum knee making me aware of what years of obesity was doing to my body. My knee is still messed up, and may never be as strong as someone who never had weight issues. But having to face my demons and challenge myself has made my spirit ironclad, and proved to me that my resolve is rechargeable. I can't wait to see what else I can do. Bring on 2012!