Amby Burfoot saved my marathon!

A couple weeks ago I ordered this book:

 

Its home is in the basket in our Reading Room.  You know, the bathroom.  C’mon everybody reads in there and you can admit it here, we’re all friends and this is a safe place.
This morning I picked it up and started reading.  It opens with such promise with the words “Anyone can run a marathon.”  This is exactly what I want to hear/read.  I’m “anyone”!  I can run a marathon!  And I gleefully continued reading the Introduction, About the Runner’s World Challenge, About the Authors, then on to Training which also has a very promising start.  “Running 13.1 or 26.2 miles is no small task, to be sure.  But anyone who has done it will tell you that getting to the finish line isn’t the tough part – getting to the starting line is.”  Having run that 13.1 I can attest to that.  The race itself was really almost a denouement after the weeks and months of training and anticipation.  But it was still one of the coolest freakin’ experiences of my life!
So I kept reading and everything is peachie groovy until I get to this: Build a base. As long as you’ve been running at least four times a week for about 6 months and you’re in the habit of exercising regularly, you should be able to complete a marathon or half-marathon training program without a problem. . . . If you’ve been running only sporadically and have to give your weekly routine an extreme makeover to start training, it’s going to be tough to stick with it.  Plus, you’re bound to end up with any variety of overuse injuries that come from doing too much too soon, . . .”
And that, my friends, was not exactly what I wanted to read/hear.  It wasn’t even in the same zip code as what I wanted to read/hear.  I’m not 100% certain it was even on the same continent.  Because let’s face facts: Being out of running for ten weeks doesn’t exactly qualify as “running at least four times a week for about six months” and was definitely much more akin to “running only sporadically and have to give your weekly routine an extreme makeover to start training”.  So there I sat numb-butted and heartsunk.
Great!  Just freakin’ great!  I have told everyone I know and a fair number of complete strangers “I’m going to run my first full marathon this year!”  And now I am presented with pretty irrefutable evidence that I’m not even ready to start training for said event, let alone successfully and without injury completing the training for said said event, let alone getting through said said said event without some part of my body being irrevocably damaged or falling off completely.
The next section was titled (ominiously at this point) Time it right.  Awesome!  Exactly what I have failed to do!  I began reading.  Okay I began skimming the words because really, who cares anymore?  Clearly this isn’t in the cards for me.  And as I flip to page 4 (doesn’t take much to dash my dreams now does it?) I glance at the bottom of the page and there’s a pen and ink drawing of none other than one of My Running Heroes, and author of my favorite book on Running Philosophy, Mr. Amby Burfoot staring at me from one of those little sidebar boxes you sometimes see on the sides or bottoms of pages of books.  And what are the first words Amby has to contribute to this Marathon Training Bible?  Let me share with you.  Amby’s opening salvo was this: Most experts think you should work up to marathons and half-marathons slowly and gradually.  Not helping me here Amby old buddy old pal . . .  blah, blah a few 5Ks… blah, blah what I think you should do, too.  Except for this difference: I’m willing to acknowledge the power of the marathon and half-marathon to “grab” runners and motivate them to jump into the unknown.  So if it grabs you hard, I say: What the heck, go for it! But remember this: You have to be very realistic about your expectations.  I’m realistic about my expectations!  I am very realistic about my expectations!  Unless you’re young and fit (I’m middle-aged and kinda fit!), you’ll have to do most of your training on a run-walk pattern. I do all my training – heck all my races – on a run-walk pattern!  I am back in the game now baby!  Thank you Amby Burfoot wherever you are!
So I’m not giving up the dream.
I have four months to get back in condition, and after today’s four miler I can safely say I am soooo not in condition, but I have four months to get back to there before we begin Hal Higdon’s thirty week training program that is based on a run-walk pattern.

Speaking of today’s four miler, it wasn’t the prettiest run ever, but it was definitely one of the most heartfelt.  I felt my heart pounding in my chest nearly every running step I was taking.  And I’m almost certain part of the 3.5 pounds the doctor removed might possibly have included one of my lungs because there was a definite loss in air capacity going on.  I ended up finishing the four miles in 53:19 and maintained an average pace of 13:11 minutes per mile.  Interestingly enough the first mile was my jackrabbit mile and we were running straight into a good 10 mph headwind.  Which might be part of why it was my fastest mile.  I get a little ‘deadset and bygod determined’ when going into a headwind.
And I had to keep reminding myself (during and after) that I haven’t run in ten weeks and in the middle of all that not running I had surgery and my body is still recovering from that surgery.  Just because things are no longer shades of black and blue and feeling more bruised than they look doesn’t mean I’m back to 100%.  I’m still healing.  Healing requires energy and my body is going to appropriate energy for that before anything else.

But getting back to that marathon training thing.  Thursday evening, with the input/advice of a couple of fitness trainer friends, I finalized our training program which we are following effective immediately.
Sunday: Rest Day 
Monday: Short run & upper body strength training
Tuesday: Yoga (which will help with core strengthening)
Wednesday: Mid-length run
Thursday: Short run & upper body strength training
Friday: Yoga (again with the core thing)
Saturday: Long run
Yesterday my running mentor/buddy Tonia came up to my work and we did a 45 minute yoga session focusing on poses that target core strengthening.  Can I just say two things about said Yoga workout?
#1 If you think Yoga “isn’t a real workout” you are doing it wrong!
#2 If you think Yoga has nothing to do with core strengthening you are really doing it wrong!
Yoga is about nothing but core work. That’s where the balance comes from.
You also have to breathe.  If you hold your breath or forget to focus on pulling your navel towards your spine you will fall over.  I promise!
Today every muscle that’s supposed to be around the middle of my body is letting me know that I was, in fact, doing it right.  And I need to continue doing it right until it no longer hurts (as much).
I have a feeling that’s going to go for marathon training in general.

Last night HCRP was looking for a picture on his computer and came across some “Before” pictures he took of me in August 2011 about a month after I started running.
Not.  Pretty.
I got all cute and decided that I wanted to stage “After” pictures wearing the same shorts.  So this evening we did.
I have to say I’m a little underwhelmed at the overall changes in my body.  I’m nearly twenty pounds lighter, but other than the obvious pre- and post-op differences in my chest I just don’t see as much of a change as I know has taken place.
I’m down two full jeans sizes, my butt is (or was before my ‘sabbatical’) ‘higher and tighter’, my arms are a lot leaner and stronger.  (Who knew you developed guns from running?)  But I have to say I’m just not seeing all the differences.
I’ve gone back and forth and back and forth fifteen in my head about posting the pictures here or not, and I’ve finally decided “What the heck, go for it!”  I mean if Amby can say that about training to run a marathon, what’s a couple less-than-flattering pictures between friends?
B&A Front B&A Side

They say running is as much a mental sport as a physical one, so I’m going to adopt that same philosophy towards changes in one’s body.  I know they took place so I’m to trust in that and know that the work I’m putting in now will result in even more – and more visible – changes in the coming months.
When you speak of this, and you will speak of this, be kind.

A PR and A Crossroad

HCRP and I joined another couple we’re friends with running a 5K Race this morning.
As 5K races go this one was relatively small (I’m guessing under 200).  Of course earlier in the week I’d heard someone say there were FIVE 5Ks in our area today.
Which I still find puzzling for a city that consistently ranks among “America’s Fattest/Least Fit Cities”.  I digress . . .

Given the small number of runners there was this little imp in the back of my brain elbowing me and whispering “You might actually medal in your age group!”
I didn’t.
I came in fourth (I think – no Official Results yet) in Women 45 – 49.
And I’m good with that.
No, I don’t know the answer to “Fourth out of how many Julianne?” I placed way ahead of the me who was happily, complacently, and sedentarily on my couch two years ago and in my book that falls under “W” for WIN!

What I did do is PR* this race!
My previous 5K PR was 34:35 in November 2011.
Today the clock read 33:50 when I planted my foot across the Finish Line.
So in eleven months I’ve taken 45 seconds off my 5K time.
Not bad for someone who really hasn’t been working on speed or to reduce race time.

Which brings me to The Crossroads.  Not that Crossroads, although I live within a couple hours’ drive of that Crossroads, that’s not the one I’m talking about.
No, I have reached a Training Crossroads.

Here’s the deal:
I can run a 5K in a respectable amount of time.  I have run several 5Ks and fully intend to run several more.
I have run a 10K in a somewhat less respectable time.  But still, I’ve run one and I know what to do better for the next one (in three weeks actually).
I have trained for and completed a Half Marathon in what I consider a respectable time.  And in a time that HCRP and my Runner Friends said was a respectable time for a first Half.

The Crossroads I stand at is this:
I can continue to train as I’ve been training, focusing on consistency and endurance, and be content with my consistent 35 minute-ish finishes.
OR
I can begin using my short (3 – 4 mile) runs to do speed training to reduce those 5K and 10K finish times; continue using the mid and long runs to work on endurance and consistency in Halfs; and start looking towards the really long runs** that will be required next year when I begin training for the 2013 St. Jude Full Marathon.

*le sigh*
And so it begins.
Goal Setting.
Running Goals.
Training Goals.
Dear Sweet Asics, what fresh h*ll of life lessons is this going to bring?!

Lexicon for my non-running reader(s): (Hey!  There could be more than one!)
*PR = Personal Record
Sometimes called a ‘PB’ or Personal Best.
This is a runner’s personal competition with the runner in their own shoes.
Often more important than finishing “First” or “Last”. It’s all about Better!

**”really long runs” being defined as 15 – 20 miles or possibly further.
Yes, I really am just that crazy.

Is there a Yoga Zone?

I put up last night’s post and went to bed confident that My Plan was going to work flawlessly.  I’d ace six today, maybe even eight, and three weeks from tomorrow I would complete my first half-marathon.
Yeah.
Well.
What’s that they say about intentions and paver stones?
That.

Regardless how solid my plan was or how strong my resolve in that plan, my left knee just wasn’t up to it.  While I didn’t get all the way to six miles, I did arrive at the inescapable conclusion that I will not in fact be participating in the March 18th half-marathon we are registered for.  Rich will be running it alone.  I did get further today than I have since this whole mess started three or four weeks ago, the ping/twinge didn’t hit until 4.38 miles today as opposed to sidelining me at 3.25 or 3.5 so that was progress of a sort.

After doing a lot of online research and talking to other runners, I believe that what I am dealing with is a simple case of Runner’s Knee.  I have believed that all along.  I continue to believe that.
I have friends – wonderful, loving, concerned friends – who are calling for me to see an Orthopedic doctor.  And I will.  As soon as I have exhausted every other avenue.
I have an appointment with my chiropractor on Wednesday and at that time he’s going to take a look at the knee, give me an adjustment, recommend some exercises, and we will give my body time to heal itself.  I do have a very good chiropractor who will refer me to an ortho doc if he sees any reason to believe I’ve done damage that needs more than time and rest to resolve itself.
I won’t be running.
At most I’ll do a couple miles on an elliptical machine but only when I am able to do normal daily activities, like oh, say, walking without pain.  And yoga.  There will be yoga.  But neither of those things until after I see Dr. Jeff on Wednesday.

Between now and then it’s Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation.
Until I can get a good knee brace the compression is taking the form of an Ace Bandage.  Which gets the job done.

Since I a most likely looking at a good month off of running I’m going to have to be extra diligent with my diet to keep from putting weight back on.  And hey, I’d been asked to write more about that aspect of things anyway.  So to keep this blog on everybody’s radar I’ll be doing that.

And I’ll be sure to let you know if/when I find The Zone in Yoga.

Wha’ ha’ happen waaaas . . .

Tonight’s post title brought to you courtesy of my sons and how they would preface things they were ‘fessing up to that they knew I was going to be mad about in an effort to soften me up with humor.

Now.
On to the topic at hand.

Last Saturday was my first run post hamstring strain/Runner’s Knee Incident.
I felt good.
I was excited.
And it showed!
It showed in our first three minute run interval timing out at about 10:36 minutes per mile (our normal pace is right at a 12:00 mile). And continued for the next three or four running intervals when my HCRP kept having to tell me “Pull it back! Pull it back!” when me being several paces ahead of him (which never happens!) didn’t send the signal.

Oh, those first three miles felt AH-MAZ-ING!
Everything was working grrrrreat!
Lungs – check!
Legs – check!
Lungs and legs – check, check, and double-check!
Right up to the 3.5 mile mark when it stopped feeling amazing, great, and working.
Yep!
That would be My Left Knee.
The same My Left Knee that gained its fame in my February 9th Post.
The one I had been dutifully treating with R.I.C.E., hating that ‘R’ part most of all.

And the fact is that the failure wasn’t my knee. The failure was all mine.
I got ahead of myself.
Instead of getting back to running on the more forgiving surface of a treadmill, I hit a road run!
Instead of setting out on a three mile road run – I set out to do six straight off the couch (stretching and some light yoga notwithstanding). And, in fact got so far ahead of myself that we were “going for seven”!
Instead of wearing the compression sleeve I had credited with the speedy recovery/rehab of my Runner’s Knee – I ‘bare-kneed’ it and ran sans-support.
Big.
Freakin’.
Mistake(s)!
I ended up hobbling from the 3.5 mile turn-around mark of our run back to where a cross-street met the trail and sitting there waiting for Rich to finish his (our) run, get the car, and drive back to pick me up.


I didn’t post about this last weekend because . . . well . . . wha’ ha’ happen waaaas . . . we had dinner plans with friends and even coming home and showering quickly we got there twenty minutes late.

Then, well, on Sunday we had church and then we got home and I had to make Sunday dinner, and really needed to spend time with Rich (HCRP), and hey! The Amazing Race was on!

Monday I was actually on the couch – when I wasn’t in the bathroom – all day with some sort of ‘intestinal disfortitude’ (read: stomach bug/something I ate).

Tuesday – in addition to being My 47th Birthday! – I was doing laundry and cleaning the house in preparation for our trip to Columbia, South Carolina to attend my oldest (step)son’s Army Boot Camp Graduation. So, really, there was No Time To Write.
Right?
Of course right?

Wednesday and Thursday, well those were All About The Benjamin.
And his wife and their baby.
So really, again, No Time To Write.

Lies!
All of it LIES!!
I just didn’t want to write because – as we Southerners are wont to say – I’m askeered.
I’m afraid to even try running again because I know the minute I feel that twinge it means my run is O-V-E-R.
I’m afraid that if that twinge comes One-Too-Many Times my running days are O-V-E-R before they have even got going good.

I want – like I haven’t wanted anything since I wanted to give birth to a healthy baby in 1988 – to finish this half-marathon we have coming up on March 18th.
I wanted to run 80% of it doing the run 4:walk 1 intervals we’ve been training with.
I wanted to finish the race in less than three hours. Maybe not much less, but less nonetheless.
I wanted to finish the race hand-in-hand (literally, actually holding hands) with my HCRP.

Well.
Some of that isn’t going to happen.
Oh, rest and read assured, that I will participate in and finish this race.
I won’t run 80% of it.
I won’t finish in less than three hours.
And I won’t finish it hand-in-hand with my HCRP.
But I have a plan.

I’ll be running the race using our accustomed 4:1/Run:walk intervals; however, I’ll be running two miles then walking one throughout the duration of the race. I sincerely hope that makes sense.
But.
If it doesn’t, and because this is my running blog, allow me to elaborate.
Miles 1 & 2 – Run 4 minutes:Walk 1 minute.
Mile 3 – Walk.
Miles 4 & 5 – Run 4 minutes:Walk 1 minute.
Mile 6 – Walk.
Miles 7 & 8 – Run 4 minutes:Walk 1 minute.
Mile 9 – Walk.
Miles 10 & 11 – Run 4 minutes:Walk 1 minute.
Mile 12 – Walk.
Mile 13 to Finish – Run 4 minutes:Walk 1 minute.
And I will finish that .1 r-u-n-n-i-n-g!

But for tomorrow’s run, I’ll be doing that on a treadmill setting out to do four miles with the option to do six using the aforementioned half-marathon running plan.
I miss running.
I miss running more than 3.5 miles.
I want to run ten miles again.
And.
I.
Will.

Back in my laces again

Both my hamstring and knee have “been pain free” for three days now both with and without compression support.  Therefore, It’s time to get back on the road.  Or treadmill.  The jury’s still out on where exactly it is that I’m going to test the rehabbedness of my leg.

The recently discovered Treadmill Hater in me is jumping up and down chanting “Hit The Road!  Hit The Road!”  The part of me who still remembers the agony of limping along for-what-seemed-like-ever a week ago Thursday night keeps raising her hand from the back of the classroom saying “Ummm…  What if ‘It’ happens again and you’re miles away from the car and have to do that limping/wincing/stabbing pain thing again?!  Huh?  What about that Miss Road Hitter?”  What we have heayuh is a failyuh to reach a decision.

So.
I’m doing what any intelligent, level-headed, human being would do: I’m letting the weather be my guide!
If it’s cold and rainy that’s my “sign” that tomorrow afternoon’s six miles (with the possibility of expanding to eight) will take place on the (dreaded) treadmill.  Thank God for Audiobooks!
If it’s only cold, but not rainy, we’ll be hitting our favorite local running/biking trail.
I think that’s a perfectly reasonable ‘coin toss’.

I’m both excited and a little nervous about this whole thing.
I WANT to be running again, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little afraid of feeling that “twinge” at the back of my knee again.  I’m at T-minus 29 days and counting to my first Half Marathon and I really want to run more of it than I walk.

It’s going to be just fine Julianne.
That’s what I keep telling myself.

Head and Shoulders, Knees . . .

Let’s just stop at knees, shall we?
That seemed to work for my run tonight.
What was supposed to be a six mile run turned into a 3.5 mile run, a dull ache behind my left knee that eventually became full-bore pain all around said knee and me unable to do more than limp along at a slow walk.  Since we were a little more than half-way through our six mile run the only solution was for Rich to continue running, get the car, and come back to pick me up however far I managed to limp along before meeting up with him.

I (very unwisely) tried running a couple times while making my way on my own.  After all, the pain had subsided so surely I could run NOW!  Eight steps.  Tops.  And the pain came back with its good friend ‘excruciating’.  So I hobbled along.  By the time Rich got back to where I was I was leaning against a light post because walking – even 1.0 mph – was no longer an option.

On the way home I was p-i-s-s-e-d o-f-f!  I felt robbed, betrayed, and generally hurt and angry.  As I had told my knee early in my hobbling along: I have done everything right!
I have trained progressively.
I stretch before and after my runs.
I have invested in good, professionally fitted running shoes.
I have given up wearing heels for cripes’ sakes!  I’m talkin’ Bando-freakin’-lino pumps here people!  Bandolinos!
I deserve better out of my joints and muscles than all this!

What probably got me more than anything else was this: I was looking FORWARD to this run!  The six mile course we were running tonight was the same one that was my first six mile run.  It is comprised of the first and last three miles of the course of the half-marathon we’re training for next month.  There’s a fairly long, challenging incline at about mile 2.5; and the end of the course is also a fairly steep, short incline.  And when we first ran this six miles it kicked my butt!
I was actually in tears on the long incline, and even though I made it to the top I was certain I would never be able to do the Half.  And that final, ending uphill bit?  I couldn’t even finish that.  Now granted, I did run that whole thing last Thursday at the end of our 4.5 mile run but that was without The Long Hard Hill.
Tonight I was R-E-A-D-Y!  And from Step One I felt good.  Despite the fact that it was 43° when we started and with the sun going down wasn’t getting any warmer as we went.  I felt great cardio-wise, leg-wise, mind-wise, every-wise.
Right up to the point that the back of my left knee started twinging between 3.00 and 3.25.  We actually stopped running earlier than our four minute mark so I could stretch – hoping that would take care of it.  I tried running again from 3.25 to 3.5 and it was clear that I was done running for the night.
I think what made me the most angry was how much I had been looking forward to not just finishing, but enjoying a run that had previously been such a challenge.  And the fact that I really had felt so good from the very start of tonight’s run. 

So we get home – after spending the ride alternately cussing (I know, I gave it up for the new year, sue me) and crying, texting my BFF in a near state of panic, and texting another good friend who is also a runner and a Trainer – and I get about the business of rehabbing what I am now certain is Runner’s Knee.
I have a Sports Injury!
Which was just a little bit exciting for about half a minute.
Based on what I’ve read other muscle stresses/strains can contribute to this, so I have a feeling last Sunday’s hamstring strain was a contributing factor to this. 

I’ve also ordered a Tommie Copper Knee Compression Sleeve.  Which should arrive by about Wednesday of next week when I intend to be ready to have a short, slow, easy paced run on the treadmill.
Until it arrives I have a wide Ace bandage I’ll be wrapping the knee with.
I’ve rehabbed a sprained groin muscle, I can rehab this.

AND keep running!
Just not tomorrow.

Happy Side Effects and Learning Curves

When I started running last July I weighed somewhere around 176 pounds.
I weighed myself yesterday morning and I am at 161.5.
That’s roughly 15 pounds in 29 weeks.
1/2 pound per week.
The ‘slow and steady’ kind that guarantees permanent results.
Which is a good thing.
But weight loss wasn’t why I started running.
Pretty ironic for a woman who’s been “on a diet” since 1979 (funny, that’s about a year after I last ran voluntarily).
For the record: I am 5′ 4″. 

No, I started running, as stated on my About page here, for a couple different reasons.
Yes, there was that “my husband was a runner and I think he misses it ” thing.
But more than that was the whole
faux Nike ad from What Women Want.  I wanted to feel that way when and from running. I wanted that love affair with “The Road”.  And slowly but surely, that has become more than just a tear-jerking scene in a Helen Hunt movie for me. I have come to love “The Road” and love that unconditional acceptance from “The Road” no matter how long it’s been since the last time I met with it/her.

And along with that has come what I call the Happy Side Effect of weight loss!

Ahhh weight loss. Let’s talk about that for a moment, shall we?

This time last year I was edging dangerously close to hitting the 200 pound mark for the second time in my life, and neither of those resulted in a bouncing baby anybody.
My blood pressure had been ‘borderline high’ (130/80) for a good four years, my cholesterol numbers have stayed below 300, but the ‘good’ cholesterol was a little on the low side and the ‘bad’ cholesterol was a little on the high side. (My personal jury is still out on that good/bad cholesterol thing, but I err on the side of caution and take the doctor’s word for it.)
I got winded walking up a flight of more than five stairs; my ankles, knees, hips, and lower back hurt far more often than there was ever any reason for them to. I wasn’t in “bad” health, nothing life-limiting, but still not as good as it could have been.
I was, in short, The Average, Low-End-of-Obesity, Out-of-Shape, American.

Fast-forward to today.
Yes, I’m losing weight.
And for the first time in thirty-four years I don’t have a Goal Weight.
That amazing, amorphously specific, all-consuming, unattainabe Number.
Oh don’t get me wrong, I thought I had one.
Wanna know what it was?
One Hundred Thirty-Five Pounds.
I am, as previously stated, 5’4″ tall and depending on which “Ideal Weight Chart” you choose to believe in my “Healthy Weight” is anywhere between 105 and 150 pounds. And I have made the trip from one end to the other of that spectrum – including a lot of swings way off that higher end – numerous times.

The truth is that I have no clue what a healthy weight is for me.
Not a truly healthy one.
And certainly not a healthy, slender one.

I know how to get skinny.
I have “attained” that particular “goal” by: starving myself; abusing diet pills (the old-school, early 80s, over-the-counter kind); abusing laxatives (that’s a hard one to put in writing); by fad-dieting (name one since 1979 and I’ve probably at least played at it); and by calorie restriction combined with over-exercise.

I know how to work-my-butt-off-out then go home and sabotage my own efforts with not just what I shoved in my face but how much of it I shoved in there.

I know how to over eat healthy.
It doesn’t matter how whole the grains are, how lean the meat is, how fresh the vegetables are, or how high the fiber is if you eat two or three times as much of something as is necessary or healthy.

What I don’t know is this: I have absolutely no idea what a healthy weight is on my body with the combination of eating a reasonable, healthy diet and consistently exercising.
None.
I don’t know if “That Number” is 135 pounds, 145 pounds, or 125 pounds.

I have never known my body in a truly balanced, healthy state.
Okay, that’s not true.
When I was eight, nine, ten years old I knew my body in that state.
Because when I was about eight years old my mother went through what my family called her “Health Food Kick”. She started reading Adelle Davis’ books and eliminated all processed food from our diet. And at that age I was playing outside – physically active – more hours of the day than I was sitting in front of a television. In school we had actual Physical Education Class, and Recess. You remember Recess don’t you? (And not the adorably quirky Disney Cartoon.)

The only other time in my life that I was intentionally, all-around healthy was when I was pregnant with my son.
I was diligent about what I ate. I was conscious of sodium consumption because I was determined that I was not going to develop edema which my Ob/Gyn was nearly obsessive about. Having suffered two previous miscarriages I was (as we Southerners are wont to say) dead-set and by-god determined to bring a healthy child into the world so I ate healthy like it was my job.
I wasn’t “working out” per se, but I was in college which had me moving from class to class in different buildings, and my workstudy job entailed giving campus tours which was a lot of walking!

But past that I honestly have no clue what my body being nourished and moved and functioning as a truly healthy, living entity looks or feels like. This is the Learning Curve from this post’s title. Learning what exactly a truly healthy body feels – and yes looks – like for me.
What is its size?
What is its shape?
What does it feel like?
And yeah, a little bit of me wants to learn what That Healthy – Truly Healthy – Number is.

What I do know is this: My body – given a healthy diet and consistent exercise – will let me know what its healthy weight is.

I am that incredible combination of excited and terrified to find out what THAT number is!