I’m a Stripper!

…and so far, it has been one of my best decisions yet.  I don’t know how I got here – it wasn’t very premeditated.  It kinda just happened.  One day I was normal Casey, and the next day I went Vegan.

Oh!  You thought I meant STRIPPER.  Sorry.  If that’s what you came for, that’s another post that’s not what I meant.  What I meant was that I stripped all the bad stuff out of my diet.  Which basically left me a modified Vegan in that I’ve been eating fish, but no eggs, meat or dairy.  And HOLY MOLY I feel great!  I mean super hero great.  Really, really good.

When I said that this wasn’t pre-meditated, it really is true.  On Saturday, I got on the scale and I was up 5 pounds over the last few weeks.  I was tired.  Didn’t have energy to run.  I felt so gross.  I said to myself  “screw this”.  My friend had done a cleanse she liked awhile back, so I used that as a starting point.  It literally has you strip down your diet for three days, eating nothing but fruit, veggies, nuts, a bit of olive oil and a bit of fish.  So Sunday it was ON.  Yes, SUPERBOWL Sunday. 

But I did stick to the plan for 3 days, and then 4 and 5 and now today is day 6.  The only thing I’ve changed is I’ve added more variety to what I am eating – hummus, tabbouleh, some whole grain bread.  I am planning to keep adding things back in to see how they ‘feel’.  How they affect me.  So it’s basically been a reset for my system.  And the results are amazing.  I’ve lost 4 pounds (the ones I’d found during my non-stop traveling the past few weeks, eating in airports and hotels).  I have a TON of energy.  I am not tired as early at night, and I spring out of bed in the morning.  But that energy isn’t translating to my running.

My running stinks.

I start great.  I say “10 Miles today!” and “Man, I feel great” for the first mile or two.  Then, at mile 3 where I usually get into my groove, I check the tank and it is on empty.  Where are my booster rockets?  Where did my mojo go?  Three runs this week, two five milers that I had to force myself to finish, and one five miler that ended at three.  Previously I had been doing 20 miles a week fairly easily.

I recently read a book by Matt Fitzgerald, Racing Weight, which I think explains what I am dealing with succinctly.   He says leaner runners are faster runners, all things being equal.  Basically, I can’t compare ME to anyone else as far as speed or endurance, but I CAN improve MY performance by getting leaner.  However the key to getting in race shape is first, in the off season, you should work on getting ‘healthy lean’ and THEN you work on training.  You can’t do both at once.  It is too much of a draw on your body to ask it to use less calories and in my case less carbs too, and perform at an increasing training level.  This makes sense.

So what I’m aiming for now is some balance.  I see that I benefit from this ‘clean eating’ and I’m going to add back things I like and make sure they fit, but I am going to dial back my training just a bit while I get acclimated to this new way of eating.  In the long run (no pun intended!) I think I’ll benefit greatly from this “reset” both physically and mentally.  For today, it is definitely working for me.

Maybe you should be a stripper too!



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