Saturday, June 7, 2014


Well, this is about to get awkward. My last post was all about why I run. This post is going to travel down the road of discouragement...

It's spawned primarily by a conversation with my husband (hi honey, sorry for the husband-bashing)..  it's not the first conversation we've had along this lines, but this one is sticking for some reason.

Do you run to lose weight? Have you lost weight? Do you at least keep the weight off, and see a change in your body while you run?   ....     I don't.

I haven't lost any weight (this is a guess. I don't own a scale, but there is no change in how my clothes fit. I haven't really seen a change in my body. I suppose it's stronger, but size, tone, etc. has not changed.  Part of this is me. I do not like what I see when I look in the mirror. I do not like how I feel when I get dressed. I do not like how I look in photos. And while part of that is my own issues, part of the problem is that the photos, the look in the mirror, the fit when I get dressed has not changed in a year and a half.

Last night, I complained yet again to Dear Husband about this lack of change. Maybe it's the pressure of our three-year-delayed Honeymoon approaching. Maybe it's that this week, I've found I don't fit in two dresses that fit fine the last several years. And that the lifting has done nothing other than make my butt bigger, and a pair of shorts I was wowed to buy last year aren't so flattering now. But it's bothering me.  And Dear Husband yet again told me that I just need to change things up. Last time it was heavier weights, squats, and more HIIT work. Now, it's body weight work. "All this long, slow distance running you're doing. It won't burn fat. That's why you see so many fat marathoners."

That made me angry.

But probably not for the reason you're thinking...

Because he's right. You do see many fat marathoners.

Yes, there are the rail-thin, Shalane Flanagan types. But the majority of us aren't running 5-minute miles. Especially for an entire marathon. Most of us are running at a pace we can manage. But it is challenging. But it is a long, slow, steady pace that our heart and body adapt to.

My  mind over the last 24 hours has run the gambit of reasons why this made me so angry. There are fat marathoners, sure, but there are SO MANY people telling me they've lost weight running. Those 'fat marathoners' talk about doing sprint and speed work, so why are you telling me to do sprints and I'll lose weight if they are fat? How did we go from, 'lift heavy and you'll lose/tone' to 'do bodyweight stuff in intervals and you'll lose'? How many of those runners who lose weight talk about eating massive cheeseburgers and cupcakes on their cheat days while I don't eat gluten, rarely have sweets, and don't eat processed crap? All these runner are talking about how they don't lift weights, or when they do, they're light. I'm out here lifting a minimum 45-pound barbell.

And that's when I knew what was really making me angry.

I do everything right on paper. I eat well, I lift heavy, I work out minimum 5 days a week. And I have seen no result. And each time I go to him with frustrations, I am told that what I am doing is wrong. "It isn't easy. You don't get to just do what is easy and get what you want." But the problem is, I should be able to do what I enjoy. Every time I ask for help, I'm guided toward something resembling a CrossFit WOD. But not as heavy, maybe not as intense. Just different enough that DH can laugh when I accuse him of making me CrossFit.

And that's the root of it.  Perhaps he's right. LSD running is not the ideal way to burn fat. I know. But, in a world where I urge others to "find an exercise you enjoy" and rather than 'diet', "find a lifestyle you can stick to", why does the answer for me keep coming up, "do something you don't enjoy, challenge yourself, get way out of your comfort zone, and find a lifestyle that's difficult to maintain".

He's wanted me to CrossFit for years. And maybe this will finally make me try. But I don't see it as something I want to do.  I want to see a result to my hard work. Just a smidgen of it. I don't want to be told that I ran a marathon, and while the result was fantastic because I supported a important charity, the personal result was non-existent.  I don't want to lose pride in what I did. A marathon. Not many can say that.

But today, I am discouraged.

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