Sunday, February 1, 2015

Food, Fuel and Feeling Good

Rewind to November last year and I was on top of it all. Regularly running 10kms and eating healthily, I felt good. I was fit, strong and full of energy.

So I decided to up the stakes and challenge myself to a 20km run. I was surprised how quickly and easily I built up to it, and one cold, rainy November morning I sped through 20.5km in 1:57minutes. I put a big tick beside the challenge and promptly fell off the wagon.

At first I was just giving myself a few days rest. Then the weather started to get really cold. Then the Christmas party season started. Then the kids were on holidays. Then it was New Year. And then I was too unfit.

Many of those excuse-filled weeks off were filled with drink and fat laden foods - not that I ever have a problem with any of that - I'm a firm believer in 'everything in moderation'. It's just that when you don't have the balance of exercise in your life there really isn't any moderation.

The past week has been the worst. Housebound with a poorly boy I have been tired, grumpy and eating whatever rubbish I can to get me through the morning \ afternoon \ evening. Instead of eating a proper lunch I would have a piece of toast and two Mr. Kipling cakes. Followed by tea and biscuits. The mid-afternoon slump \ boredom would soon kick in and I would be reaching for the chocolate.

But the more crappy food you eat, the more crappy you feel, and the more crappy you feel the less you want to exercise. It's a vicious circle that none of us are immune to - even the ones that would be considered generally fit and healthy.

But this morning I broke the cycle. I went for a short 4k run followed by a power smoothie and suddenly I'm back! I feel instantly great again.

And that's the brilliant thing - like the vicious cycle there is also a virtuous cycle. Do some exercise and you feel good, which makes you want to eat more healthily, which makes you want to exercise, which makes you feel good...

So I guess it's time to just stop the excuses.

Although maybe I'll just stick to the 10kms this time.
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