Friday, April 18, 2008


OK here's the situation.

I lost 35 pounds and successfully completed 2 sprint triathlons, a 5 mile race and a 10k last year. Then, everything went to hell.

I gained back 10 pounds, injured myself, and developed a fear of deep water swimming.

Since February, I have been carefully watching and tracking my eating, running and spinning 4 or 5 times a week (mostly consistently) and have even started hypnosis. In that time I lost no weight to speak of, but did work up to running (run-walking) up to 4 miles in about 50 minutes.

Then last week I went on vacation in Costa Rica, where I did not run, but hiked up mountains, vigorously, for hours almost every day. (By the way CR is FANTASTIC!!!! Photos to come!) On the second-to-last day, I got Montezuma's Revenge, badly, and the entire contents of my body were expelled at fire-hose force for three straight days and I had no energy at all. While recovering, (since I'd basically lost my appetite) I decided to cut back my eating even more - I think the calorie limits I was following (about 2000 a day) just were too much, even given my height, girth and workout intensity/frequency. I've been doing that for nearly a week.

I'm now back and feel mostly fine, physically. My weight this morning: the same as it's been, give or take, for two months. I ran Tuesday and pooped out (no pun intended) after a mile. Today I went out for the first time with the Marathon Project group - I was out of gas after 20 minutes and didn't complete 3 miles. (It's hot and the course was hilly.) I suppose it's possible I'm still weak from being sick. But it feels like I just will never get strong, never get fit, never lose weight - I feel completely discouraged, hopeless, like giving up and quitting.

It's hard to get motivated when I'm not improving. It's hard to focus on goals when they seem so unattainable.

How do I get my mojo back?


LBTEPA said...

AAI - Act As If your mojo is there. This will confuse it and one day it will sneak back and act as though it's been there all the time!
No seriously, probably the best thing to do right now (coz I've been where you are, my friend, and I know it SUCKS) is just go through the motions. Do what you planned, even if you have no faith it will work. Plug away. One day, I PROMISE, you will feel better (aunty LBTEPA has spoken!)
BTW did you get your thyroid checked?

TriGirl Thea said...

Hello my lovely. Firstly I am so glad that you had a good vacation. Looking forward to the photos! Though I'd avoid posting the pics of "Montezuma's Revenge" if I were you. :)

As for losing your mojo. I think there are two separate issues going on here. First is your weight, and the second is the running.

I know as well as anyone how hard it is not to let a figure on the scale dictate how you feel about yourself, but honestly - you've got to let it go. I know some folks say throw away the scale...but I've never been able to do this. One thing that helped me was to switch to weighing myself with a different 'scale' -- I mean, if you currently measure in pounds, try switching to kilos. For me it helped me to stop comparing where I used to be, and focus on where I was now.

The second is the running. With consistent training you WILL get stronger and fitter - I think its virtually impossible for it not to. However, your body has just been through an enormous trauma. Its possible that you are still dehydrated. Its possible that you need to take in more electrolytes. And its also possible that although you feel ok - your body is still using much of its energy on replenishing its white blood cells, and generally cleaning up your system after an horrific bacterial infection.

This is temporary. It WILL heal. And after, running will feel much less like your trying to fight your way through custard. I promise.

In the mean time. Try not to beat yourself up, and try to make healthy choices.

Take Care sweetpea.

And for what its worth, after monitoring my intake and output for over a year, I know I need 1800 calories a day to maintain (5'5", 165lbs) AND when you measure the calories you burned during exercise dont forget to subtract the calories you would have burned anyhow (I estimate at about 100 per hour for easy maths). Getting my head around these two things made weightloss much easier for me -- though obviously I'm still struggling with it.

Ultra, Iron "GeekGirl" Misty said...

Stop training for a while. by that I mean that when you go for a run, pick a route that's "About" as far as you want to go, and then leave the watch at home. Move slowly and just enjoy the run and don't worry about how fast. do the same with the bike - just cruise. Have fun with it. The diarhea thing is a real energy drain. It will come back.

Calyx Meredith said...

I'm glad you're back! So sorry to hear about the Montezuma's Revenge - that can be so distressing, physically and emotionally. Give yourself PLENTY of time to get back on track. And I have to mention this because it happened to me - you really might want to go get checked out by a chiropractor/nutritionist to see if you picked up a parasite. The big symptoms might go away quickly but if you've got an intestinal hitchhiker - it can keep draining you at a low level. I didn't have to do anything drastic but I did have to take some stuff to get entirely clear - and MAN did I feel better!

It looks like everyone else has great comments about motivation/mojo - but I'd like to say that you've shown such tremendous and beautiful faith in yourself already and your blog chronicling that is so inspiring to me, that maybe you should go back and read some more of your blog! :D You will be in my thoughts!