In an alternate parallel reality, I’m a full-boned foodie. Oh, wait…
It has not escaped my attentions, not even a little bit, that to cross the finish line of a fifty kilometer race I need to come to terms with my complex relationship with the things I shove into my mouth, both on and off the course.
At least six years ago now I had one of those cliche look-in-the-mirror moments. Everyone loves reading about those. I should write a book about that moment. I could legitimately put words onto paper on said subject. That moment spun my life off in a weird new direction, and left in its wake one of those affirmation-type stories people pay money to read for inspiration. Over four months I changed the way I ate, got thinner, fitter, stronger, ran my first marathon, and never really looked back.
Well. I peeked back now and then.
In the six years since, having dropped forty pounds in a summer, I’ve stuck mostly plus or minus ten pounds from that final number. Being lighter put less strain on my health and body, allowed me to run that marathon, and fundamentally changed the way I look at physical activity and the adventure that accompanies it.
All that said, I’m still not a thin guy. I’m definitely not one of those writhe, speedy ultramarathon guys you see in the youtube videos. Instead, I’m more like that guy you almost but not quite believe is a runner. I see the look in the eyes of people I meet: “You run? That’t awesome.” sounds like a compliment, but it isn’t a “you must be runner…” or “oh, sir, manifestation of the running gods, teach me your secrets!” It’s “you run?” Good for you. Keep trying. We’re glad that the sport isn’t so elite anymore.
Where I’m going with this is simple: I’m not the fat guy I could have been… but I’m also not the thin guy I need to be to do this thing. It’s a real barrier. It’s a serious consideration. And ultimately learning to feed myself (even) better for the next fifty weeks is going to be as important as every single klick I run.