Friday, October 8, 2010

OT 10 Update: The Nutrition Side

Operation Treadmill 2010 is still in effect. I've missed a week of exercise here and there, because of heat, or the exorcism that occurred on my face in late August, or whathaveyou. BUT. I've always climbed back up on the wagon (treadmill). In fact, this is the first time in my adult life when I've implemented an exercise routine and stuck with it even after a bad week. In the past, if I missed a few workouts I threw the whole thing out the window. I'm pretty proud of this fact alone.

It's been 9.5 months. My weight loss has plateaued in a big way. I'd lost 15 pounds by late spring/early summer, and I've put a couple of those back on. I'm still fine with how I look, but a good nutritional plan was eluding me. Back in June I was running a lot of miles. I was going on 5-7 mile runs. I was thinking about training for a 10 mile race in my area, and possibly a half marathon. Everything came to a screeching halt when I didn't support any of it with the right nutrition. I was still restricting calories, and especially carbs, while upping and upping my miles. I got really sick. For 2 weeks I would have a couple hours in the afternoon where I couldn't get off the couch. I was nauseous, exhausted, a mess. (It felt like early pregnancy, but I knew I wasn't pregnant.) I even cried to Bennett one day What is wrong with me? I feel like I'm dying. I was really and honestly worried that something was seriously wrong with my health. I didn't run for a few days because I was feeling too sick, and then I went on a carb binge. After 3 days of eating whatever sounded good (read: lots of carbs) I felt human again. After reading a bit about nutrition and training, it quickly became apparent that I wasn't eating right/enough to support my work outs. So, I started eating more. But running less. And then I missed a week here and there. But I was still eating more. So I gained a few pounds. Which is no big deal, but I felt like I was still left with the mystery of: How can I eat enough to support my work outs (and rev them back up) without gaining more weight, but without feeling sick?

And then I read Master Your Metabolism by Jillian Micheals. Holy smokes. I've never gotten into fad nutrition philosophies or the whole organic movement. My philosophy was always to eat well, lots of produce, not a lot of simple carbs, keep the meat lean, watch your portions, have a treat now and then, ect. This philosophy worked great. Even when I gained weight, I could look at my eating habits and know where I got off track, and get back on track. This whole regular exercising thing really threw me off. I needed more calories, but didn't know how to go about it. Until I read this book! It's amazing! The focus is on whole foods, and total hormonal balance. I learned so much about the hormones of hunger and fullness, as well as stress hormones and girly hormones. I have only made a few changes, over the last few days, but it already feels "right".

It's also been the motivation I needed to keep OT 10 going. I was still enjoying my work outs, but the whole thing felt kind of direction-less. I feel focused again, and I won't lie, I'd love it if another 10 pounds came off ;)

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