Thursday, January 21, 2010

Failure Paves the Way to Success


Week #2 of The Biggest Loser at work and all is not going well. In fact, it’s plummeted. I know I know, how, after that amazing yellow-piece-of-paper-pep talk I passed out last week, could everyone NOT be enamored with inspiration and come out mean and lean this week? I mean, geeeeez, that was some serious brain training there!!! First I have to say that many did not weight in yesterday; we were off school because today was the first day of the 2nd semester so yesterday was a day for make-up finals and therefore many contestants were not there (including myself, thank you!!). Still, of those that weighed in, the biggest loser winner for the week was a mere 1.88% weight loss. HUH? That’s it? Have we given up already, folks? Seriously!!! If I gave up every time I failed on a run or a race, I’d have never run again after a middle school track meet. No…that’s not how it’s done here!! We fail and we get up and we do it again and again and again until we get it right, dang it!!!!! It’s not easy, nothing we want so badly is. Did I give up my goal to get to Boston after I took off too fast and nearly expired my existence at mile 18 in Big Sur? Did I give up running a marathon after I landed in a medical tent with an IV sticking in my arm due to being overly dehydrated at the San Diego Marathon 8 years ago? (Sorry Megsie, that was one of the worst marathons I’ve ever run!) Did I give up and walk in Boston last year at mile 22 with the worst stomach cramps I’ve ever endured? For that matter, did I give up running marathons, period, at that infamous mile 22 in Boston when I swore to all the heaves above I’d never run another marathon? NO, NO, NO, and NO!!!!! (that last one was only a little well-deserved, mid-race temper tantrum). If I didn't fail from time to time, I wouldn't crave it as much as I do!

I think runners are just cut from a different cloth. One BL contestant told me, “I have so much going on, I couldn’t focus this week.” Yeah well, I have a marathon coming up in Boston in a mere 13.5 weeks and in the words of the one and great Steve Prefontaine: If you fail to prepare, prepare to fail. I have so much going on in my crazy, chaotic life – my weekly my calendar looks like hieroglyphics with so many things scribbled in with arrows and stars and reminders. But I have to prepare for Boston. It’s not an option not to.

Runners don’t know the words failure. At least not this runner girl. I make tons of mistakes. And I cry and whine and complain, I puke and I throw temper tantrums full of big time drama, but I do not give up! The day I give up running after my dreams is the day I fail. I have not reached my potential, I cannot quit. I'm not trying to be self-righteous here, I'm just saying that we can't give up because it becomes too difficult....or especially when it becomes too easy.

Here’s a great article from a friend y’all should read, if you get a chance about not giving up: http://ilikemargarine.wordpress.com/2010/01/09/24-hours-and-17-years/

Okay, off my soapbox! This Biggest Loser contest is going to put me in an early grave! Maybe I should start a running club with these guys and just make them get their butts out on the track daily!

Running news:
Week 4 of Boston training and it’s time for a recovery week. 3 weeks building, 1 week recovery. Many plans advocate this and I’m a fan!
Monday: Easy 5 miles, felt really good. Yea!
Tuesday: I had hill repeats on my plan but decided to switch Thursday’s intervals to today. I missed intervals last week due to an over-indulgent extra 4 miles the day before scheduled intervals. Retarded, I know. I got a temporary brain cramp and thought I had to get in missed miles so, feeling good, ran 8 hard miles and not 4 easy, as scheduled, and wham, come Thursday’s intervals, my legs were spent. My mind knows better than to up the easy day run before a scheduled quality run but somewhere in my A.D.D.ness, I thought maybe my legs had forgotten. They did not. They have such a good a good memory, darn it! Sooooo, I felt I should try intervals today instead of hills; I needed to test the speed waters. I did 4x1 milers at 10K pace. Well, I did them at 7:30 which would be muy, muy bueno if I could run a 10K at 7:30 pace, so said pace was a 10K “hopeful” pace. But nevertheless, I felt great and had no problems doing them. The ticket to these mile intervals is to stress lactic acid, not to overstress the capacity to do them. Lactic threshold is the point in which your body starts to fatigue at rapid rates. Running at lactic threshold pace is thought to raise your lactic threshold, which should allow you to run faster, and longer, in the future. The biggest challenge in doing threshold runs is to hold the proper pace and resist turning your threshold run into a time trial. Not easy for us who have self-diagnosed A.D.D and think running the fastest we can on every run is the ticket to running faster races. Not that I’ve ever fall into that category (ahem). This is just a little tip for ya from my running coach classes.
Tuesday morning before I did that nice little set of intervals, I was at the gym doing a killer arms/core workout. Cuz Megsie told me her Boston coachy told her that arm strength would be beneficial for the marathon. I’m just going to be a big girl and admit this: I HATE (and I am not afraid to use that word, when appropriate, like now!) to weight train. But I do it. I go screaming and kicking but go I do. 3 times a week cuz that’s what’s recommended. And I don’t like even one single second I’m there. But I was there!! And as of Wednesday night as I write this, my arms are still sore; I take that as a sign I worked 'em well. Oh, and I need to also mention that some lame, jerk at the gym came up to me while I was working out and said, “I need to use that [piece of equipment], that you’re using, you can use it after I’m done, I should just be a few minutes.” Um, hello, I AM USING IT, Lame-o!!!!!
Wednesday: 4 miles easy (Please note: I did NOT have an A.D.D. moment and run 8 instead 4. I therefore should be fresh for Thursday’s hills. And more weight training I hope).

Other news:
I get sinus infections frequently. I mean, so much that I’m sure an antibiotic doesn’t even help anymore. Stress brings them on, for that I am certain, and just common garbage in the air. I am trying to be good and “clean” the nosey more but just take note, you’ll be hearing a lot about sinuses in the coming months, especially since spring is (hopefully) here soon. I’m certain I need something surgical done. One day.

Julie said the nicest thing about me on her blog in her “Tribute to My Favorite Blogs” post. Thanks, Julie :). She said I was always in a good mood. Obvious she’s only been blogging for a few weeks. Stick around, Julie; you’ll see it’s not all rose-colored glasses here in Jill land. One blog had my ex-trainer’s girlfriend SLAMMING me for being “mean.” Yeah, whatever. Not going there. But for the most part, I’m nice, unless people are insensitive and then I can get a wicked tongue. I just get hurt easily. Sensitive girl and all here.

Tonight for dinner I had potato chips and a protein shake. How’s that for balance?

Mel wants me to write 7 things about me. I’m guessing these are 7 things about ME, darn it. I’m not sure I know 7 things about me but I’m going to think about this a little more and jot down some truly amazing stuff (and no, Garbo, you will not learn much about my childhood). More on that later.

I am WAAAAY behind in blog world reading. Thank goodness I’m back to work tomorrow and can get caught up!

Run well, friends!

39 comments:

Davide (The Artist Formerly known As Moose) said...

Hey Jill, you ARE nice, let me tell you!
BTW I've only just started strength training as well (yes, I'm always a newbie)... I loathe it.
Ciao my friend, hope your training for Boston goes well!

Jamoosh said...

Perhaps the participants did not understand the Biggest Loser is about losing weight and not confirming that yes, indeed, you are a loser of epic proportions.

Marlene said...

Too bad about the lack of commitment with your TBL Challengers.... I think you're right about runners being cut from different cloth. Kind of sad to see people give up and make excuses so quickly. All you can do is try...

Nice job on your training this week!

C2Iowa said...

Lactic threshold pace? Something new for me to investigate. Then again, almost everything is new to me.

As for the guy "explaining that you need to give up some equipment.." been there done that. I just turn and say "Was fehlt Ihnen denn" (whats wrong with you). Just a little german I remember just for fools.

Staci Dombroski said...

Love this post!!! I love how you talk about not giving up!!

saundra said...

You're a great motivator! Thanks for this post.
For your sinus issues: have you tried a neti pot?

Velma said...

Maybe the biggest weight challengers haven't weighed in yet, but a loss is a step in the right direction. Nice job on the work outs, and I hope the sinus issue clears up. I also liked the linked post- great writing

Melissa H said...

I absolutely agree with your assessment of runners and how we don't give up! A childhood friend and I, who both (coincidentally?) ended up with children on the autistic spectrum, have likened the battle to get services for our children to running. People who give up, be it weight loss or career or anything else, are clearly not runners. :-D

7:30 mile. Ack. You are my hero.

Jenn said...

I'm sure my husband would be only too happy to fork out the money for a trip to Colorado!! It would be mighty fun to knock out a long run with some company though!! The hills will probably kick my butt in Boston. I did a lot of hills last summer. My marathon was reasonably hilly and similar to Boston in that many of the difficult hills are in the second half of the race. I haven't been nearly as good about hill running this time around. Oh well-either way I will cross the finish line and get a medal. The whole reason I'm going to Boston anyway is for your birthday party so it's a win win!! Nice work on your workouts this week. I'm hitting the gym for some weight training (blech) this afternoon. I'm skipping the lunges because I'm running long tomorrow and because I just want to skip them!! I think you need to go Jillian on those BL contestants. I don't know what's with some people. I guarantee there are many many people who would be naturally faster and more athletic than me but I've always been determined and strive to reach my potential every day! We runners ARE of a different breed!! Have a great rest of the week:)

Suzy said...

Sinus infections suck! Have you evr used a neti pot? I only get 1-2 sinus infections a year now.

onelittletrigirl said...

UGH! If people WORKED as much as they TALKED they wouldn't even need the BL contest. I get so annoyed by people who think there is some magic pill. We all get the same amount of hours! I agree, athletes in general are a different breed. Fail is not in my vocabulary!

Running and living said...

Oh, I used to have the same problem with simus infections - I broke my nose as a kid. I use a neti pot with wamr salt water and it works wonders! I am doing much better now, no full blown sinus infection in over one year. You are much better than I am in sticking with your mileage and pace - I always run faster and further than I plan to. It's been working for me so far, though, but I do fear injury!

Julie said...

Oh Jill,
You are so funny..even when you think you are complaining it is really not as bad as you think:) We all get that way and sometimes we need to vent:) I am pretty sure that Meg has a broom that you can use...I stole it from her the other night when I had a super bad PMS night...but I gave it back:) I am super sensitive as well and to many times take things to hard. I know that you are not a quiter!!! You will do awesome at Boston...I am sure of it!! Have a great day Jill!

runningcommentaries said...

haha I know exactly what you mean. I get so frustrated when people give up or say "well you're a runner, you don't get it." Um, I've puked in more races than I haven't and failed more times than I haven't! We get it more, we just have that thing to keep us moving forward!

Slomohusky said...

Runners and Failure? Don't think it has anything to with each other - the two words. If you finish the event great, if you don't that is okay as well. Runners I doubt really think about failing much to be honest one way or the other. If you are, then way do you do it? The only failure is not even trying at least one mile in one lifetime if you are physically able too. I also no plenty of folk who run just to run. They do many miles a week without thinking of doing 5 or 10K, HM or Full. So, whether you run one mile or 100 mile trail run - somewhere in there not sure where the word failure fits.

Mel -Tall Mom on the Run said...

Could just be a rough week.. Hang in there..

Katie A. said...

Man, you can really crack me up! Potato chips and a protein shake? Classic.
And your BL contestants are whinners, take it or leave it for them. You're right, runners are cut from a different piece of fabric - we just get it done!
Sorry you're sick! Feel better! I want those 7 fun things in your next post!!!

shellyrm aka jogging stroller mama said...

Week two is always hard. Some will stick with it!

You have been busy! I am tired just reading all that. I am finally approaching caught up with my google reader. Finally.

Oh. and I think you are nice!

HEATHER @ runfastermommy! said...

Hey don't be too hard on them! 1.88% weight loss in the REAL WORLD is good! 2-3 pounds a week is realistic for people NOT on the biggest loser ranch! Although if they are truly slacking off, lay into them!! haha! Great post :)

Meg said...

Don't let them fool you Jillie, a real friend would tell you truth...neti pots are WONDERFUL but omg, I still haven't figured out how to pour salty water UP through my nose and let it run through my sinus passage and out through the other side. I end up gagging and coughing and burning my nasal cavities with salt water. Still haven't figured it out! Be careful!!!
You are rockin' your Boston training, OMG, I feel sooooo behind. My mind hasn't even gone that direction and now you're throwing around those Steve Prefontaine quotes and going all "coachy" on me! Ah!! I'm so scared now...oh well, guess I can count the days(1-2-3)until my marathon is OVER and I can focus on Boston and party planning. xoxo megsie

Meg said...

Now, in that post I was sticken with the ADD bug and forgot the word "the" in my first sentence, right after the word "you." Sorry, I know we're teachers an all so....

Rookie on the Run said...

I love this post! I have learned from running that not giving up is probably the most important part of the sport... for me, anyway.

Sometimes I'm reluctant to feel good about finishing my marathon because it took me sooo long! But then I have to remind myself that I DID it and I didn't give up.

Thanks for the reminder!

Becca said...

You're funny! Sounds like a full week!

elaine said...

Love your blog, hmmm, maybe I'll warm mine up a bit

Mikey B said...

"Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? ...Heck no!"
--- Bluto, Animal House, 1978

I liked your "prepare to fail" quote so much I thought I'd share my favorite about never quitting. :)

Don't cut them any slack, Jill. It's for their own good. Remind them it isn't easy. The only reason Demi Moore stays skinny is she pays someone to follow her around to slap cookies out of her hand.

Mikey B

Jennifer said...

It's amazing the kind of excuses folks come up with for not doing stuff. I get the weirdest ones form my college students who don't finish assignments. Face the truth people, you are just slackers! All of You! Well not you Jill of course or most of my good running friends. Yes, I agree runners ARE cut from a different cloth.

Glenn Jones said...

I think you have found the Achilles heel of today's society (no pun intended). Asa small business owner, I find more an more that people are big on talk but short on execution - especially when it involves hard work. It gets pretty disheartening at times....

Tara said...

I agree girl! Runners are just made from a different cloth altogether. I hate the excuse "I don't have time", but them I hear them turn right around and talk about their favorite TV program from the night before. We prioritize stuff that is important to us and you can tell who is and who isn't serious about their health and well being.

Ok, I'm off your soap box, that will leave you more room.

Can't wait to run with you this weekend! I'll e-mail you my cell phone, etc.

Running Through Life said...

It's all about priorities and what you want more. Some people are just more committed to their cause.

Anonymous said...

I only have one Biggest Loser trainee and she is right on top of it. You can't hold each one's hand though! I would have seriously socked the gym jerk in the throat. Thanks for the motivation...I alway check what you're up to when I'm in need of a pick me up! (btw...this is Kim in Ga.!)

Katie said...

Excellent post Jill! It must be so frustrating to see these people not make themselves a priority. Like you said, everyone can come up with a myriad of excuses as to why they are not working out, eating well, etc. It's called life! Taking better care of yourself has to become a priority. I definitely felt like a real runner yesterday- I forced myself to complete my four mile run even though I was exhausted from being on the road all week- but I had to get the miles in. And I did!

Have a great weekend and thanks for a great post!

Irene said...

Sorry about those nasty sinus infections! I used to get them frequently, but I'm not sure what changed that I don't get them as often.

Yeah, runners ARE cut from a different cloth. 6 years ago when I told my GP at an appointment for painful knees, she said "Oh, you're one of THOSE people" when I told her I was marathon training. I like being one of THOSE people!

Any way, awesome blog post. You gave me plenty to think about.

:)

Melissa said...

You are so right about not giving up!!

AZ said...

Wow. I must say, that was some kind of blog entry.

Run Jess Run said...

I had a hard time coming up with 10 things...but I'm glad I did it! Can't wait to see yours!

Aneta said...

u r right! never give up! just keep on going and going! never stop. never surrender!!!

and for the jerk at the gym! How Rude???? (andy yes, i do mean to say it in the Michelle from Full House way)

and yummmmmm chips ad a protein shake! yum yum!

hope ur having a good weekend!

HappyTrails said...

Never ever give up!!! As for the sinus problems, really, the neti pot or the NeilMed squeeze bottle (they perform the same function-squeeze or pour the mixture in one side of the nose, comes out the other) helps ALOT!!! Rinses all the germs and grossness out so hopefully nothing can stay in there to create an infection. The NeilMed bottle seems easier to use, for me. Get them at your local drugstore or Costco!
Kathleen

Claire said...

What a positive, motivating post! I'm trying to do more weights, too - all the power to do those who do strongman comps!

TX Runner Mom said...

Jill, I have to agree - we are cut from a different cloth. Our cloth doesn't come with nearly as many excuses, lol! I always get frustrated with my friends who tell me I inspire them, but they could "never do that". Yeah, when you tell yourself you can't, you're right! :-) Sorry about the sinus infections! I usually get a couple every year and they are horrible!