Thursday, September 15, 2011

No Chocolate?

I was invited to be a part of In Step with Real Women Real Fast Boulder. I'm truly honored. I feel a little bit strange though, especially because anything around 7 minute miles seems to be fairly difficult. It's not that I can't run faster, it's that my foot is making it difficult to even attempt to do so. As a result, the part about real fast isn't sitting too well with me. I mean, I was fast when I ran under 6 minute miles, yes, but that was a lifetime ago. Still, I'm thrilled to be a part of a team with some incredible athletes. I just hope I can get to a point where I can actually compete more fully. I'm going to make sure I get to the bottom of what's going on with my foot, so I can see what kind of training I can do when it isn't so restricted. 

I really wanted to run a certain race on Oct 1st, because I think some members of the team will be running it. However, I looked at the results from last year, and I might be looking at coming in last if I did run. Holy crap! In other words, it's a big race with really fast competitors. As with nearly everything I'm doing lately, playing it by ear (or foot) is the only option for me. I'm guessing I'd be better off finding a low key race or doing some kind of solo workout.    

This week, I managed a harder run on the trails followed by a medium long one the day after. That left me seriously dragging yesterday, and now this rainy weather makes me want to curl up and nap all day. It has been a struggle to do much of anything at all lately. I did have a surge of energy when I ran into a dark gray snake sunning itself on the trail Tuesday. Wow- this white girl can jump! Actually, I can't jump that high, but the little jump combined with screaming, "Shhhhiiittt!" was probably quite a sight. Normally I'm not too terrified of snakes (more spiders), but I had just watched Kill Bill II. The black mamba scene was lingering in my brain, so seeing a dark snake did cause a reaction! Fortunately, just as I thought this critter was going to take a bite of my ankle, he (or she?) lowered his head and scooted into the fields. 

Speaking of scary, I have my foot massage later today. AAK! 

The chocolate challenge:

I was dared to give up chocolate for 3 months- that's MONTHS, not weeks or days. I will be starting this torture in a week or two. Obviously I couldn't waste the chocolate I had just bought, so once that's gone, I will go on this chocolate strike. I have no reason to do it other than to prove that I can. I mean, chocolate isn't bad for you. It even has quite a few benefits, things like antioxidants and ingredients that stimulate the brain's opioid production. Chocolate increases dopamine production in the brain, which is important for people like me who tend to have trouble feeling happy at times. Still, I'm going to do it, and I'm sure I will survive. I'm not looking forward to the withdrawal, perceived or real. The good news is that, unlike alcohol and some other drugs, chocolate is not physically addicting. 

Unfortunately, by having a little bit of chocolate every day, I've created the cigarette vs. heroin situation. What I mean is that when one compares cigarettes to heroin, of the people who try cigarettes, 80 % will become addicted. Of the people who try heroin, 30% will become addicted. This is because of the reward factor. With heroin, it's one biiiggg HUGE reward, a rush of pleasure all at once that lasts. With cigarettes, it's many little bits of pleasure spread out over time. We are creatures of habit, so the more we do something, the more likely it is that it will become a habit. An addiction specialist once said heroin would be like giving a dog a big steak when he came to the door. Cigarettes would be like giving the dog that same steak but cut up into 200 little pieces distributed over time. Every time the dog went to the door, he would get this little reward. The idea is that the dog will go back to the door more if he's given little bits over an extended time, which is exactly what I have done with my chocolate- a little bit every day, and sometimes a little but more every day! 

What I regret most is the timing in this. Everything is easier in the summer. Plus, I'm going to miss out on the Long Grove chocolate pretzel rods that are only sold at Halloween and during the winter solstice holidaze. 

Long Grove Chocolate Pretzel Rods

This is completely unrelated, but I watched a crazy show called Dance Moms, and I was kind of horrified. From what I can tell, it's a train wreck of overbearing parents, a hardcore dance instructor who looks like she never danced a step in her life and kids under extreme pressure. What a fun mix! I'm still trying to recover from the episode I watched. Many tears were shed, and it wasn't just the kids who were crying. Yikes. It's like toddlers and tiaras meets Bela Karolyi or something. Clearly there are some talented girls on that show, but the whole scene is highly disturbing on many levels.   


  1. Sweet! Umm, I mean the team thing. Not the chocolate thing. Seriously, that is a great group.

  2. Thanks, GZ! I hope I can participate in a way that benefits them. The massage went well. Wheww!

  3. No chocolate? Dear God, why?????

    And congrats on your new team. That's awesome. Hope your foot is healing ok!

  4. Thank you!

    I don't know why, but now it has become something I *have* to do! I did push the start date to tomorrow though, as I found one more tiny little stash of chocolate that *had* to be consumed before I give it up for the challenge. :)