Saturday, September 22, 2012

Firing on all cylinders

Right now my derby league is doing a weight loss challenge, and while I applaud the organizers and the participants for getting things going, I've decided not to participate because weight loss is not in line with the fact that I'm trying to train for a marathon and all that. (Weight loss, while welcomed, is purely secondary to my athletic pursuits. There are lots of ways to lose weight that that don't involve getting stronger and better at sports, and that's not what I'm into right now. Fitness challenge? I'd be ALL OVER that.) But just because I'm not participating, it doesn't mean that I can't set goals for myself and try to achieve them.

My main goal right now is to settle into a routine and get firing on all cylinders. Over the past year, I have lost weight and generally gotten in better shape, but I've never had every piece of the puzzle at the same time - I would be running, but not eating right or going to CrossFit or derby; or I would be on Paleo but not really keeping up with any of my activities (like now), and what I need to figure out for myself is how to get all the parts working together and going at the same time.

Because it all makes a difference, and all these things help each other. I skate better when I'm running and doing CrossFit. I run better when I'm cross-training through skating and CrossFit. I am better at CrossFit when I've been running and skating consistently (especially at WODs that involve running and squats). I do ALL my activities and recover better from them when I'm on Paleo. And I am more likely to stick to Paleo when I have a regular routine of activity, rather than sitting on my arse all day and feeling unmotivated.

Diet and exercise. Exercise and diet. Now more than EVER, I'm aware of how much the two rely on each other. (And when I say diet, I don't mean "regimen that you do temporarily until you reach a weight loss goal and then you go back to all your bad habits." I mean, "permanently ingrained healthy eating habits that are designed to make your body healthier and fuel your life.")

So my big goal right now is to figure out a way to make everything fit together and find balance. Be my optimal self. And this may generate some weight loss or it might not. I'm trying to focus more on performance (which I can control) and less on outcomes (which I can't):

  • I've managed to talk my friend Lisa into doing the 100 Pushups Challenge with me. I kinda suck at pushups (from my knees, chest touching the ground, elbows at my side) and I want to do them better. Probably when I'm done with that, I'm going to work on situps (FULL situps, not crunches). There's a situps challenge too. Is there a burpees challenge? I REALLY need to get better at those.
  • I want to run longer and more efficiently. We've been doing 3/1 intervals for our distance runs (and we've kept it up about 15 miles before we really started to fatigue and cut our intervals short), so it's what my body is used to, but when we started trying to do 4/1s, it was really, REALLY difficult. Just that extra minute! So I'd like to be able to maintain a run for longer stretches of time before taking walk breaks. (And then, of course, build up total distance from there.)
  • I need to run more regularly. I've been skipping my weekday runs, which makes my weekend runs difficult, and I just really, REALLY need to make them a priority so that I don't crap out on my long runs like I did last Sunday. (So, friends, if you see me during the day or are on my FB, please give me periodic nudges to run after school. HOLD ME ACCOUNTABLE.) I suck at getting motivated during the week, because I have to get up too early for work, and when I get home, I'm super exhausted and just want to veg out...
  • ... except that I also want to go to CrossFit. Twice a week is my goal. It's not enough time for me to become super familiar with the lifts and motions, but if I can even do twice a week regularly, then I think I will be in much better stead than if I didn't go at all. Plus, I actually really enjoy it. CrossFit Milpitas is really fantastic and everyone's super nice, and I just really love being there. I just wish I had the time and money to be there MORE.
  • Showing up to all my necessary derby practices would be a great idea too, if I want to consistently make the travel team roster. I've been on leave of absence lately, so since I just started back again this past Monday, I felt really out of the loop and sucky and behind everyone else, and I don't want to get left behind. I do have big goals for myself in this sport, and I consider it my main sport, so I need to get my s*** straight so I can show up and be a good teammate and a good skater.
  • I need to hydrate more. I'm so reluctant to drink water because I've been a soda addict most of my life, and water is neither fizzy or tasty. But... sigh... it's necessary.
  • I've been lagging on my vegetable intake lately. I'm very quick to cook up a piece of meat, but ever since I stopped getting fresh produce delivery (the delivery hours just weren't working for me), I've been lazy to buy and eat many vegetables. I kinda get bored with broccoli and zucchini all the time. I liked getting the produce delivery because it forced me to learn some new vegetables.
  • I've been sneaking sweeteners into my food lately (some honey in my tea here, some agave in my Paleo brownies there), and I should cut back. I should probably do a reset and go super strict for a month just wipe the slate clean. I've been very into making Paleo treats lately, and I'm pretty sure that that's NOT how it's supposed to work =P (Major shout-outs, though, to my aforementioned friend Lisa for making me Paleo sweet potato ice cream!!!)
It's a long list, and there's a lot I want to accomplish, but honestly, since going back on Paleo about a month ago, my body has been performing and recovering better than ever - now I just need to get the other cogs going, and I think I will be headed towards BEASTDOM.