Sunday, May 23, 2010

Slowing down the tortoise

Want to know a secret? It's hard to work backwards. I don't mean literally backwards. I mean it's hard to have knowledge about how to do something and then start all over -- at a slower pace than you're used to doing and paying more attention -- or having intention about it.

For example, eating. I don't really enjoy my food. I don't eat slowly. I don't savor every bite. Mostly, I act as if I need to consume what's right in front of me as fast as possible before it disappears. I don't know why. I was never a stray animal. I never had a point in my life where I was starving. No one has ever taken food away from me. But my dietician talked about slowing down at meal times. And I have yet to take part in it. You know why? Because I see the food and I forget. I just go-go-go. It's hard-wired into my brain. So, I guess I need to start unplugging it.

Another example, running. I've been running since September. I have two speeds: my pace and walk. Apparently, the heart rate I have at "my pace" is way, way too high to actually power my body in a good way. If I want to improve how my body works, how fast and how far I can go, I have to retrain it by starting over and going slower so I get more energy from my stored fat rather than burning carbs. This is hard.

I set my heart rate monitor and follow the 12-week cardio plan that iPower gave me. But today, as I'm doing intervals between zone two (heart rate 141-147) and zone three (148-156) my heart rate monitor buzzer is beeping at me pretty much the whole way that I'm either going too fast or two slow. It took me 25 minutes to finally get in the groove of it out of a 60-minute run with 5-minute warm up/cool down at the front and back end. And holy cow does slowing down take intention -- and humor. Because let's face it. I'm at a "moderate walk" at zone 2 and a "sorta jog" at zone 3. Because "my pace" which isn't fast at all has me at a HR between 165-180. And that whole time, I'm past my anaerobic threshold, which makes my body freak out.

Good times.

Know what else is hard? Repeating things 4,000 times each year for over 4 years hoping that it finally sinks through your kid's/dog's head that part of their behavior needs to stop.

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