When I go for my long run in the winter, I vacillate between two feelings. One feels like this:
Specifically this page from the Dark Knight Returns when Batman is jumping back into crime-fighting. As I run I catch myself saying, “I’m a man of thirty, of twenty!” even if I’m trudging along at my normal snail pace. There is something about putting all that gear on, running over snow and ice that makes me feel a little like a bad ass.
I know I’m really not a bad ass, but getting out the door on a cold Sunday morning makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something when it comes to my personal fitness and health. Even if I only go a short distance, I still feel good when I get home with that strange eye lash icing and condensation beard.
This year I’m planning on running a spring marathon, which makes winter runs a necessity. I haven’t hit the intense workouts yet, but I must admit I’m a little skittish when it comes to the VB6. I’m hungry right now and I only ran three miles today. What is it going to be like when I run 10, 16, 20 miles? Even when I was nominally eating well and training for a marathon I was constantly hungry after a hard work out or long run. Are my snacks of cutie oranges, nuts and apples going to even make a dent in my appetite? Or by six in the evening when I’m back to omnivore mode am I going to be so famished that I eat an entire cow?
Yes I know that plenty of vegetarians and vegans run marathons and do high intensity work outs. But I’m not in those clubs and don’t really want to be. In VB6, Bittman shares that he tries to train for a marathon each year while eating according to the dietary guidelines, so in theory anyway it all works out. I think the anxiety is stemming from the fact that while training for the last marathon I didn’t lose any weight, which is REALLY annoying. The hope is, being a little more cognizant and strict about what I’m eating, some benefits might ensue. At the very least, I still get to run in the cold and feel like a super hero.