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I Ate Those Cookies

I had a 5k this weekend, that I was certain to PR.  (Famous last words, by the way!)


And I was all ready and hot to go for it, and I paced amazingly until Mile 2.2, when I (along with 5 other people) got completely lost.

Race was not marked and there was no one in sight.  So our little clan stood at the intersection, and said, “Well? Which way do we go?”

We choose right.  (Wrong!)

And the wind was knocked out of my sails–because I didn’t know where we were going, or what the hell was going on…. (In the future, I will just run and run my 3.1 and declare that my 5k, official or not. So that was a lesson learned).  Anyway, I finished up the race about three-tenths of a mile short, meaning it was a big PR, alright…but not the real kind.  I placed second with my time of 25:55.  I left before the medal ceremony, because I did not run a 5k.  Yes, I had notified the Race Director, who wasn’t concerned, and said, “This is all about fun! Get your medal!”


Uh, no.  And okay, sure–yes, it is about fun. But I’m not taking a medal when I cut the course–whether it was intentional or not (not).  Because I didn’t run a 5k, and those who didn’t get lost and DID run a 5k- well, they should be sure to be the ones to get the medal.

He understood.  So with my 25:55 5k, I left and went home, totally bummed.

Because I wanted to run a 5k and get real results.  And I didn’t.  But, then I receive the email with the results.

Meredith Atwood, 2nd place female, 35-59, 25:55

And then… the third place girl… her time was 34 minutes.

UGH!  So I “did” actually place second?!?  I mean, if I had not gotten lost, I would have finished at least 28 something… so.  Poop.  A second place 5k for me?  On what planet does that happen?  In a running race? (Okay, a really small one.) But still.

So that was my semi-success note for the weekend.

(*And we had our wonderful Virtual Race with the kiddos and all the others who registered… I’ll do another post about that soon!!*)


In my other folder of notes from the long weekend, I have this one: humiliation.

Yesterday, I was hungry. Like really hungry.

It started because I had a long swim and a run, and I didn’t eat enough and I wasn’t done with the workouts until about 1:30–and I was hangry.  Then we trekked with the kids to eat where I ordered healthy, but the food was for rabbits.

Then I came home and ate anything that wasn’t tied down or didn’t eat me.

Had a healthy dinner.  YUM.IMG_0201[1]BUT….

I was behind the food 8-ball.  I didn’t get ahead of the nutrition early, and I was monster.

SO I made cookies.

I intentionally made them. I watched them bake, with the oven light on.  I inhaled the smells.  I pulled them out of the oven two minutes early, and started feeding.

I burned my mouth on the steaming, boiling chocolate chips as I stuffed them straight out of the oven into my mouth.

And I did it intentionally. 

Without hiding. Right in front of the Expert, with his eyes-wide.

With no apologies.  In fact, I had justifications.  Even better.

I ate EIGHT cookies.  EIGHT of them.  [And I am still not sorry.]


You know why?

Because I have spent too much of my life being sorry or disgusted about what I ate.  (And rightly so… honestly. There have been some truly bad and horrific things that I have eaten and drank for years. For real).  For the most part, I really eat well these days. I take care of myself. I train hard. I don’t eat crap.  I don’t drink crap. I do the right things, right?  Right…

So I am choosing to let these EIGHT (*yes, eight) cookies go.

Because that’s exactly what I should do–it’s not fatal. I’m not going to gain 10 pounds from it. It doesn’t RUIN anything. It’s just cookies. I mean, we can’t make habit of having *just eight cookies* every day.  But…

Here’s the thing though. I am mad that I ate the cookies, because this morning I woke up feeling like crap.

Then I told my strength trainer, and he shamed me for the cookies, declaring me the queen of self-sabotage (in the nicest way possible), and pretty much proceeding to ignore me the rest of the morning.  Well, isn’t he mean!??

Actually, no.  He knows I can do better.  I know I can do better.

He knows that I am made of better resolve and drive than eight freaking cookies.  And I am.

So. I am not sorry, really.  But sort of, I am.


A positive note for today?

I haven’t eaten any more cookies.

I only cried twice from being completely stressed out from the list of things I need to do–none of which appear to be getting completed.  And for having to deal with sh*t that I shouldn’t have to deal with.  And for major things that I can’t discuss.  And for minor things that are super whining–like cookies–that I can discuss. (Aren’t you lucky!?)

But really, I am thankful that the day is almost over so I can go to sleep. [And put my head in the sand that is my bed.]

Some days are just like that. You do the best you can, and it’s still just too much to bear and deal… even if the stuff is small.  And especially when the stuff is big.

And today, is just one of those days.  (Just without the cookies. 🙂 )


  • Kacie J

    January 19, 2016 at 5:18 pm

    I almost cried when I read this post – it mirrors so many experiences I have had with food. We do something intentional and then punish ourselves for it. I personally need to learn how to learn from my self sabotaging behavior and move forward.

  • Eileen a

    January 19, 2016 at 5:31 pm

    thank you for your post, it helps all of us to see that everyone has those times where we have to have the cookies. sometimes when I look at bloggers or experts I think they really have it together, but I know you are human and have bad days too and it helps people like me see that and stop beating ourselves up for not be perfect.

    • Bryn

      January 19, 2016 at 10:39 pm

      Great article! Thanks for sharing. Such a reasonable approach to eating and healthy living in general (because really, we all need a binge every now and then).

      Also thanks to Meredith for being so honest about life…I always wonder how seemingly extraordinarily busy people get it all done. Yes, I know I’m not supposed to compare myself to others but I often think, seriously?! How do they do it? Really in more of a “what am I missing? What tips can they share?” kind of way than a “I wish I could be like them”. Always good to know that others find all the pieces of daily life generally hard to manage too!

  • Lisa

    January 19, 2016 at 6:47 pm

    You ate the cookies and its done and they were probably delightful. Once you do it you can never change that fact and so you just have to move on. Once I figured that out it prevented a lot of continual sabotage after one indulgent episode. I finally figured out that every minute of my day is a chance to start over and so I quit throwing myself down the stairs every time I tripped on a step. Also, cookies are delicious – why would we want to live an entirely cookie-free life? Thanks for sharing – I can so relate!

  • Beth @ Paces and Places

    January 19, 2016 at 10:27 pm

    I feel so horrible (physically) after eating crap, especially sugar. And I always try to memorize that feeling and remember it the next time I’m tempted to eat something I shouldn’t. And sometimes I’m successful, but many times I ignore it and choose to eat the junk. And then regret it because I feel so sick. Why do we do this to ourselves?! It’s been encouraging watching your journey and seeing you make life long changes to the way you approach food. It gives me hope that I can do the same thing.

  • jenn t

    January 19, 2016 at 11:43 pm

    Miss Meredith…have you looked at your first picture above? You look fricken awesome!! Is cookies the best way to go? Probably not…but you recognize it and move on…

    • jenn t

      January 20, 2016 at 12:03 am

      And by that I meant you look stunning…I eat bad food sometimes… It goes down well. Just remember you rock and (after I had a health scare end of last year)one day at a time.

  • Cheryl

    January 20, 2016 at 7:02 am

    Always remember that famous quote…”to err is human..” Important note I think is that you didn’t repeat the pattern the next day.


    PS. I would have eaten the cookies as well!

  • SarahfromFrance

    January 20, 2016 at 10:41 am

    Love your blog…your story just sounds like mine today. I just did a big swim contest, swimming for 3 hours and I was so hungry that I kept eating first clean then I had two greats muffins ! I love reading blog because you are human person talking to others humans persons of things we all have in common and it feels so good to know that together we can make it through the day and keep moving forward! Keep going, even the French triathletes ar following you!

  • Linda

    January 20, 2016 at 4:54 pm

    First of all- no shame in your game! You have been posting pictures of some real good meals! You – like many of us are training, eating clean and multitasking while trying to make healthy choices…you were honest about the cookies to us and your coach…thank you for being you…love your honest words…BTW you look pretty awesome!

  • Juliana

    January 20, 2016 at 7:53 pm

    This post was really inspirational and EXACTLY what I needed to read today. Managing food and exercise can just be so overwhelming. It’s nice to see that you’re human like the rest of us. You really rock, and you’re really inspirational! This post is going to help me keep moving forward!

  • David

    January 21, 2016 at 1:55 pm

    Thanks for being so open and honest about food cravings. this is a part of being human. I look for healthier cookie and treat recipes that are lower in sugar or have no sugar as a food treat for myself. Also smaller portions as well. That way I can feel like I am being a bad ass and satisfy those internal cravings for naughty food. Being Vegetarian I have cookie and ice cream recipes that do the trick and minimize the damage.

  • Brandy

    January 21, 2016 at 9:00 pm

    I had one of those night last night as well for a myriad of reasons. I made your 8 cookies look like child’s play (and I had a BLT for dinner). You are right about that fact that you have made so many positive changes. You look great and more importantly from what you say you feel so much better. Keep it in perspective, forget the damn cookies, and move on. Lose the anger, it will only make it worse. And tell your weight trainer to stick it. He isn’t telling you anything you don’t already know and none of us need reinforcement of negative messages. You cannot punish yourself for every tiny slip. When people do that continually they end up falling spectacularly.

  • Lorena

    January 22, 2016 at 9:14 am

    I don’t think you should beat yourself up over those cookies. Seems like no one that is important is or was judging you, except maybe yourself.

    How DO you balance all of this? You have a super heavy season coming up with all these races and events. How do you and the Expert find time for each other and keep the flame alive? That would be a GREAT post to read!

    • Lorena

      January 26, 2016 at 10:10 am

      I know you did a post on this a while back, but I think it would also be informative to know the cost of being this active in triathlon. I’m not sure what a dietician, strength coach, tri coach, gym memberships, and all the equipment costs are, not to mention race fees for IM-branded races (those things are expensive!). What should we expect to reasonably spend if we want to follow your path?

  • Kim Webster

    January 25, 2016 at 8:28 pm

    This is fantastic. Somedays you really just need 8 chocolate chip cookies. And I love that you weren’t sorry. Life is too short to not indulge once in a while. And it sounded like you really needed those cookies. I have days like that too! Look forward to reading more of your posts!


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