Ironman: Scared Straight

So my big, genius idea about going easy on my food and treating my eating like training was a giant, out-of-the-gate FAIL.  I know you get a kick out of my usual food confessions, but I will actually spare myself the humiliation (this time).

Oyster Eating Fail.

Usually, I can joke about it, but really, I’m not finding humor in it anymore.


I gots a problem. 

I am meeting with Ilana Katz (my pal, book-contributor and nutritionist) again on Saturday. I know she’ll help scare me straight.

As I swam a very hard and well-earned 2100 meters this morning, I felt like crap from what I put into my body yesterday. I fueled my body with poopsicles, alright. Garbage food. And lots of it. Disgusting chemical food that tasted delicious.

This morning, I was whining to the Expert:
Expert:     You have to get your act together.
Me:           I know.
Expert:     You have people depending on you.
Me:           I know.
Expert:     Get it together, Mere.
Me:           Okay.

But all I can think about today is cookies. I wanted to leave work, go to Panera Bread with my laptop and work from their tables…. so I could sit and eat their cookies.  Then, I have been thinking about how much I want to eat pizza and drink beer after work.  I had a swim this morning, and I want to UNDO it all with FOOD.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?!?!  I can’t take this food obsession/destruction any longer! I seriously feel like I am about to lose it. 

Well… I was feeling that way…

Until I remembered something very important: I have signed up to volunteer at Ironman Florida in November. 

And then I remembered the reason I volunteered: so that I can register for my first (and probably last) Ironman for 2013.

Then I got scared.

And I didn’t want pizza or beer anymore. I just wanted to get on my bike, get this healing broken foot run-ready and feel healthy. The thought of 2.4 miles in the water, 112 miles in the saddle, and 26.2 (holy guac) on the run…

140.6 miles at this weight? In these pants?

Oh. em. gee. If I had to ride 112 miles with my 10,000 pound rear in the saddle… the Queen would fall off.

Not this Queen.

 Needless to say, Ironman has officially scared me straight.
Really, all I can think to say now: time to make this sh*t happen. 

Who’s with me? Who’s coming with me?



* * *
This post is sponsored by Premier Protein.


  1. Lynn in MD says

    You can do it!!!!

    I love food too (there's a reason why I was 70lbs overweight a couple years ago)… but the thought of fitting into my tight wetsuit soon has helped me pull myself together and get back on track.

    The thing that works best for me is simply tracking EVERYTHING that I eat. I use Dailyburn tracker but I know there are other online food trackers out there. Just by knowing that if I eat it, I have to record it is enough to stop me from eating a lot of things.

    I'm now finally enjoying watching my weight and body fat line chart tend downwards together. :)

    Still not going to be excited about putting on that tight rubber suit though…

  2. Sara says

    I felt like I was reading my own thoughts off the screen yesterday! and then again today! This is what I told a friend yesterday after reading your blog: "I am exactly the same way when it comes to bingeing and food. I can push a work out to no end but can't manage to put down the nutella and spoon and just get an apple. I love apples so why can't I make the right choice? But I also can't move past the bad choice and resolve to make the right one tomorrow… every day. Tomorrow will never come. My food, my body, and my training all have to be one. Now I have to make my mind agree with it and kick the cravings." Good luck to you… us! It's so brave of you to put all of this out there. I'm hungry right now and will refill my water bottle and grab some fruit. Thank you for reminding me.

  3. KtCort says

    You and I are way too much alike. I train so I can eat. And I am training now for ironman Arizona. I don't eat right all the time but 10+ hours of training is not possible on junk food. I tried and it doesn't work. In order to maximize my training, I've realized and come to terms with the fact that food is fueling me to finish my race. IM is a huge motivator. I want to look like an ironman on race day!

  4. diaryofanangryfatwoman says

    I wish I could say I don't know what you are talking about. Lately, I have just not wanted to push on the diet front, but I have a Tri/adventure race in October … I have to get ready. I can't run 3 miles straight yet … and I have to run 7. THAT SCARES ME!

    WE can do this … I really believe we can.

  5. pensive pumpkin says

    girl, I am on the eating plan from hell right now and I soooo feel your pain on this one!!!

  6. Anonymous says

    I literally ate a cupcake while I read this post… I definitely need the motivation too. Thankfully, a department change at work is going to soon relieve me of the hatred I currently feel for my job that is fueling my weeks long sugar binge. Thank goodness!

  7. Kim with "Wilson" says

    Here I sit with my Wilson and so feel your frustration. In my mid 30's I was active and ate "right" but just slowly puffed up like a doughboy. After many years of searching for "diets" and reasons, I finally can blame Metabolic syndrome. At 35 nothing was glaring wrong on my labs but I knew I was so not myself. And let's discuss the insane need to shove carbs of any form in my face!I convinced my doc to let me start a basic med, that is cheap , to ward off diabetes for as long as I could. The first reward was the carb cravings halted by 90%. The second, by regulating my blood sugar I felt better. Nine years later I also found a wonderful endocrinologist that acknowledged my thyroid needed help after 3 other docs saying it was "normal" .Today I eat pretty much Paleo, don't have to really watch or count calories. I look at food as fuel my body. Last night as I hopped to bed, I laughed as idealized, I went an entire day without a cookie!! It's the little things

  8. RockStarTri says

    I did IMFL last year. I call it the highlander ironman since there can be only one (per my wife). You got this.

  9. Kris says

    After losing 100+ pounds, I've been in maintenance mode for two years… and every day it's still a struggle to continue to make the right choices to keep the weight off while still giving myself the right fuel for my Half Ironman training. You want that ice cream, or cookie, or chips… you EARNED it…. but it's not the food you need. UGH!

    Good luck, and have fun volunteering!

  10. Kim says

    I'm with you!! Like I've said before, we fight the same battles (and it sounds like we're certainly not alone). I keep thinking there is NO WAY I can do 26.2 in this current body..yet Oct keeps getting closer and closer and I continue to be an idiot about my eating. Apparently I'm not scared enough! But, this week has been a huge step in the right direction. We can do this "together"!

  11. Stefanie Frank says

    Fear can be a great motivator!

    For me it was fear of not finishing that scared me straight with regard to some less than ideal habits.

  12. Carrie @Tempo Life Coaching says

    You can do this Mere! I know you can! It's funny that, as great as the info that Ilana gave me is, it still didn't scare me. I went through the "what is wrong with me" too. It's crazy to KNOW what to do and just not do it. And then I realized I didn't want to do my scheduled tris because my tri shirt won't fit (and I want to wear my tri gear for the group I train with). Seriously? I'm going to not do triathlons any more because I can't fit into my shirt? That's what did it for me.

    I ate healthy for a full week, which is amazing! Then I had a treat day yesterday and ate so much crap. I didn't feel good yesterday and was actually looking forward to eating my healthy stuff today. I don't recognize myself..ha! It was the tri shirt that got me though.

    You can do this and I PROMISE you will feel better for it.

  13. Anonymous says

    Me, me, me I'm with you! I am so grateful for your honesty, I struggle daily to make better choices! Thank you for everything you share.

  14. TX Runner Mom says

    ME! I am joining you! I've been back on the wagon for 1 week and I intend to stay here. But, it's a birthday weekend with pizza and cake, so it's gonna be tough. Must.stay.strong.

  15. CautiouslyAudacious says

    I had a very similar story and was going through a self destructive cycle all of last year and my dad and I went and volunteered for the IM AZ and signed up for this year's 2012 and guess what it scared me straight too!!! I'm back on track and have lost 5 lbs and eating way healthier!! You can do it!!!!!!!!

  16. Sarah says

    I'm right there with you. I don't know why I don't treat nutrition the same way I treat the other elements of my training, which I'm pretty diligent about. If only for the reason that I'd be faster if I dropped 5 or 10 pounds. My biggest issue is snacking. I just made myself a someecard and printed it out to hang on the snack/cereal cupboard – "Oh, so you want a snack? There's fruit in the fridge. Eat it."

    Hopefully I won't tune it out after a day or two. 😛

  17. Duckie says

    You can do this. You have done so much already. Try to give yourself some credit, as it is due. You have already earned an MDot and you will earn another by simply putting one foot in front of the other. When I get overwhelmed, I just focus on baby steps… just this meal, just this workout… whatever. It helps me.

    What's that you always say? Something about moving forward? :)

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