This is an update since my whiny running post, when I thought I would die running ten steps in the heat. I’ve continued running, had my best run yet on Wednesday, (4 miles) and am signing up for a 5K today. I altered a bunch of things, so I want to outline them.
First, I learned more about eating high protein, lower carb first thing in the morning. I have always been a serious skeptic of all things low-carb, but since something was apparently not working for me in my current diet, I gave that skeptical view more consideration. I truly thought there was not a chance I could eat several hundred calories for breakfast and not watch my weight go up, up, up. Especially because we eat for real dinners, later than you’ve ever heard of unless you hail from Europe. But I had read a bunch of gobbledegook about the glycemic index and spiking blood sugar and the need for “slow burn” and protein repairing muscles and other jargon and I figured I had nothing to lose; bring on the eggs.
Turns out eggs (sometimes bacon) early in the morning does appear to produce long-burning energy. At least, in my study of one, I found that since eating my high-protein breakfasts, I have not had another pooped-out, dying-for-a-break run like the one I posted about last. Not only am I not gaining weight, I am down to my driver’s license weight again, which is pretty much the Holy Grail for me. I’m paying a lot of attention to glycemic index on the whole and my weight is not doing that crazy up-two-pounds, down-one, back-up-three insanity of a couple months ago.
Second, I’ve been dabbling with running barefoot. Most of my runs have included a portion where I take off my shoes and run around the baseball fields, through the grass and the sand at home plate. I’m playing Kenya runner, I guess. My thoughts on running barefoot is that it is incredibly better than running shod. There’s a technique to it; you don’t just kick off your shoes and beat your heels on the concrete. There’s a type of stride that goes with it, a very joint-friendly, natural gait that is energizing and tactile, especially in the grass and/or sand.
A lot of people now are running in minimalist shoes or five-fingered shoes to get barefoot-ish runs without the “stepping on sharp stuff” fear. The jury is out for me on those. I did order a pair of Merrill barefoots from Zappos, but they are not five-fingers and, while I expect I will just plain like them as shoes, I have no idea if they will give me enough of what I love about barefoot running if I do try to wear them for that. We’ll see. For the 5K, I’m planning to run with my regular shoes and socks.
Third, my dear brother told me about the phone app Map My Run. This is perfect. Exactly what I needed. There is a huge psychological benefit in getting stats on your run. Not having any idea if I was making it a mile or two or four or what and with what pacing was very discouraging. The only issue with this right now is that I need an armband for my phone; carrying it in my hand is awkward.
So, the only thing I’m looking for right now is more variation on what I could eat for breakfast that is high protein and low carb besides eggs. (Also not dairy; I cannot eat dairy.) I did just discover Quinoa and, while I do love my Quinoa with Black Beans, that still is (maybe?) not as much protein as a few eggs/egg whites are. I don’t want to resort to protein shakes or manufactured stuff; I’m looking for straight-up food that is easy to prepare at 7:00 am. I’m open to suggestions.