PREFACE: I'm not a small man. Never have been.
I've ran 10 half marathons, a full, been laughed at, been a leader, been hospitalized. Running and I have had a life together. I haven't ran an endurance event in almost 7 years. I've decided I want to try again. That's where we are today.
I went to the fair yesterday. I ate a bunch of stuff I didn’t need to, didn’t drink nearly enough water, and managed to do very little physical activity besides walk around Prairieland Park over and over again. Don’t get me wrong, I had a blast, but I knew I would regret it the next day.
I’m not a drug user, I gave up drinking a couple years ago (never was a big drinker anyway), and I don’t smoke. My drug of choice is undoubtedly sugar. Starch. Food with carbs. Food in giant sizes. You name it, I’ll eat it. At least… I used to…
There was a lot of sharing yesterday. The one indulgence I took in that I knew would spike my sugars (in case you’re wondering and we don’t know each other that well, I’m a diabetic), were these things called “FREAKK FRIES”. My guess is the one-K version is trademarked elsewhere. Still, I had a bite of a Spudnut (big-ass donuts made with potato flour), a forkful of poutine, a bite of a hot dog, and a cheeseburger (lettuce wrapped). All in all, I did ok – until that night.
Chinese food was the problem. Being half-Cantonese, I feel as though I have a right to over indulge a little more. It’s a stupid justification, but we are always good at finding excuses when it will bring us the joy and satisfaction of feeding our addictions.
Last night’s dinner became this morning’s breakfast – and that’s where it all really begins. After a busy week at work, I was determined to make today my running day. I’ve already made mistakes. After trying to run indoors on a treadmill, I didn’t bother doing any pre or post stretching, and I almost tweaked my knee in the process of trying too hard too fast.
So… today I faced a nice day in the city, Meewasin Trail, and some good stretches before going out. The New Balance 860’s are treating me well (although I had worn down my old ones so much my feet and body are getting reacquainted with the support they offer). It was about 5pm when I finally hit the trail. I had been nibbling on the satisfyingly salty shanghai noodles (I’m more of a thin chow mein fan, but take what ya can get), egg foo yung and other tasty treats throughout the day, as well as drinking LOTS of water.
Yup. Water should do the trick. All that salty food should be counteracted with water, right? Yeah-no.
By the time I got through my stretches and started running, I was a cauldron of watered down Chinese food, which was finding any escape hatch it could. I would be stretching to say I made it about 50 feet without wanting to heave right then and there. I took a moment, waited for it to settle, and started again.
Sure enough, feelings of dread were entering my mind. I might as well quit. I can’t even make it 50 feet without having to yak. Shut it down. Pack it up. Or… shut my effing face.
So I plodded on. It wasn’t fast, it wasn’t pretty, but it got done. 2.42 KM, 23min 35sec. Average pace 9:46/KM. A far cry from the 5:45/KM I had at my peak years ago, but it’s a starting point.
I've got the gear. I've got the drive. I also have the experience. Sometimes, even with everything you need, the hardest part of following a plan is finding a place to start. The beginning is now behind me. I can't wait to check more things off the list.