This February will mark the start of a new running year for me. I've been at it 2 years and am starting my 3rd training season. My first season started off wanting to complete a 10K and somehow morphed into completing a half marathon. Well, not somehow, I know how. As soon as I finished that 10K I knew it wasn't enough. I didn't train just to stop at 6.2 miles. A half marathon was calling me, I could feel it. And, so, at the end of my first season I had done 5 races 2 5Ks, a 10K, a 10 miler, and a half marathon.
If anyone has done a half marathon you know the feeling I'm going to describe, euphoria and a drive to do more and better. That's how I felt at the end of my first season. I walked up the steps of Akron's stadium and thought "I've still got more in me!" So, my focus of my second season was a full marathon. I got distracted mid-season with a triathlon but finished the season on a high. I ended this year with a 10K, 3 half marathons, a triathlon, and a full marathon.
I was focused, last season, on getting my miles in and making it to 26.2. I ate somewhat normally but by no means extremely healthy. I decided at the end of my marathon, after finishing an hour later then hoped for, that I need to focus on my diet. I took a months rest and have started running and cycling again. Now that the holidays are over it's time to buckle down and get my diet under control. Carbs have never been my friend. I carb loaded, smartly mind you, for my last half and my full, and GAINED about 10lbs (could be that extra hour). My problem is I love bread. And cookies. And cupcakes. The sweets aren't really an issue. I get one cupcake a week. But bread is going to be difficult. Peanut butter and jelly is my go to lunch. Fresh bread with soup is perfect for the Cleveland winter. But I'm going to have to say good bye. It's low carb high protein here on out.
"But you're a runner, you need carbs," you say. "High protein won't help your cholesterol," you say. But I say it will and I don't need refined carbs. I have a family history of high cholesterol and heart disease (more on this tomorrow). At age 10 I was put on a low fat diet. And my cholesterol went UP! Went on Atkin's and it went down. I currently have great triglycerides, high good cholesterol and bad cholesterol. But the ratio of the two is wonderful. Everybody is different.You need to find what works for you. I feel better, run better and weigh better when I reduce my carbs. This is how I will take my diet in hand.
Now if only I can walk past the cupcakes!