Let’s talk FITNESS.
I ran my first ever official race this morning. It was an 8:30am gun out in Ashburn, VA for a charity 8k/5m race for the Children’s Hospital of VA. I ran the race with my wife Amanda, and friends Kristen and Sarah. Other than the fact that I had to get up at 6am to get there in time, it was great. The weather was cold but beautiful and clear. I ran it in 46 minutes and some change.
I’m pretty much a total noob when it comes to running, having started just last November. But I love it. The race atmosphere was exhilarating, with parents and kids waving and cheering from their houses throughout the whole course. Plus it was really motivating just to be running with such a large group of people.. there is so much more mental distraction that it makes 5 miles just fly by.
My goals right now are to run a half marathon in the Spring (that’s 13.1 miles), and a full marathon in the Fall (26.2 miles). I still have a long way to go, but I’m convinced by the way I’ve seen myself improve that anyone can do it if they just take their time training and know what they’re doing. Don’t ever rush yourself. I think with 6-7 months to go, I’ll be able to hit the big 26. So basically, this post is the first of many.
Back to food a moment. Yeah, I eat a lot, it’s kind of what I do. I love eating. I’m convinced abstinence and denial are not the way to health when it comes to diet. But I think that staying active is a great way to accommodate that. I’ve read about the topic at length, and it’s led me to incorporate some basic foundational guidelines about diet and exercise, so when I share my experiences with either I’ll do my best to share what I’ve learned.
For instance, this morning I had honey flax almond cereal in plain Greek yogurt – I chose the cereal because it’s high in carbs, and used the yogurt instead of milk to up my protein intake. When it comes to tweaking your diet for exercise, an important and easy thing to remember is carbs before your workout, protein after. The carbs will supply your energy for the exercise, and you’ll likely burn all those calories up in your workout – the protein after will help your muscles repair and rebuild. After the race I had chocolate milk (protein) and string cheese (protein). Bearing this in mind, when I post calorie tables I’ll be including the macronutrient breakdowns (fat/protein/carbs) by percentage.
It was truly a shame that I didn’t have my camera on me at the race, because we all got a visit from the mastermind behind my FAVORITE restaurant – Ronald McDonald. He gave us a pep talk. And he was there as we crossed the finish line. Fortunately, he wasn’t there handing out chicken nuggets. He was there supporting the children’s hospital charity. So I guess.. there’s nothing wrong with what Ronald McDonald was doing? This challenges my entire belief system.