August, 2016 Recap

August was another good month for me. Weight-wise, I lost a little over three pounds. That’s not a big number, but what I think is interesting is just how easy it was to lose. I’m finding that it is getting fairly routine for me to eat well and maintain my weight. And with weighing myself daily and paying attention to what I’ve been eating, it’s getting easier for me to see correlations between my diet and my weight. For example, due to family events I had some weekends where I ate a lot more carbohydrates that I normally do and also didn’t exercise as much as I wanted to. I can now pretty safely predict that those types of weekends are going to result in a 3-5 pound weight gain and it will be 2-3 days before I start losing weight again. And I’m fine with that. I enjoy those weekends and don’t mind eating some sugary goodies. It’s simply not a big deal to go with the flow and eat what’s being served. Luckily, I don’t eat nearly as much of it as I used to! And, this approach seems to be working alright, as I weigh 30 pounds less now that I did in August of 2015.

As for exercise, I cycled about 14 miles this August, compared to 63 in 2015. That’s primarily because I’ve been running more in preparation for my half marathon at the end of September. I ran about 52 miles this month compared to 29 last year. What is interesting is that I didn’t realize the plateau I was on in my running. I hadn’t really been trying to increase my mileage too much before, but did want my runs to feel easier. Which they were, slowely but surely. But, after I increased my weekly mileage, I noticed how much easier the shorter runs were becoming. I had a couple of weeks where my shorter runs were about a mile or two longer than usual, and my longer weekend run was a few miles longer. Then, when I had a week where I was pressed for time, I found that runs at my previous mileage were much easier. That makes sense, of course, but I was just surprised at how quickly I could see the improvement.

On the running topic, I went on a long-ish 11.5 mile run this past weekend, much of it on the course of my upcoming half-marathon. That was Saturday and as I write this on Tuesday, I still have a pain in my left foot and leg. The foot pain is under my heel, and sounds like what other people have describes to me as plantar fasciaitis, although it doesn’t hurt as much as people who have had have described to me. I don’t know if the leg pain, which is up near by hip on the outside of my thigh, is related or not, but it isn’t nearly as painful. These are my first running injuries, beyond just normal soreness, since I started running again a couple of years ago. I was dead tired at the end of the run, but had no real pain to speak of during or immediately afterward. This only came about the day after. The only variable I can see was using a pair of shoes that I’ve only run a few times in. But, I did do about 12 miles in them the weekend before and have used them on a few shorter 3-5 mile runs with now problems. The pain is slowly going away, so I think I’ll be ok to run again soon, but it is a little concerning. Luckily, I have a few days this week where I can’t run anyway, so that will give me a few more recovery days. Then, I’ll be out of town on a hunting trip. That will be a lot of hiking, but no running. So, hopefully that will work as a few active recovery days. Following that, I’ll have about a week to run and see how it feels before I cut off running completely the week before the race