For the past few years, I have chosen a plant-based training diet. It worked. I felt strong and motivated. It just worked. My few forays into accidental meat eating pre-race sent me running to the bathrooms instead of a PR. This year has been different, more of an as much meat as I can stand diet!
See I’m training for a marathon in France and spending a week eating all over Paris. Back when we went to Italy, I was in a period where I could eat meat and enjoyed it occasionally, but Artboy was vegetarian. We made a deal that both of us would try anything that didn’t kill us. Whatever we were served, we would eat. He ate meat for the first time (except all those “accidents” where he shoved meat in his mouth at parties without looking) in years, and I ate all kinds of stuff I don’t normally eat. It was about getting out of our comfort zones, listening to our bodies, and enjoying ourselves without limitations. We have the same deal for France only opposite.
Plus this marathon serves steak somewhere in the last 10k. And Oysters. I know most people would just stick with whatever diet they have chosen and restrict themselves, but I am a big believer of not restricting yourself in anything unless you have to, unless it works the best for you mentally and physically. So I am certainly was not going to limit my intake of amazing food (or wine) in France. That’s just not how I roll.
First let me start by saying I have lovely new diagnosis of microscopic colitis to go with my IBS, likely stemming from my endometrosis. I am on medication for that. It helps most of the time, which has made eating a variety of foods more tolerable–less times running to the potty and more time to run. Also, I am still benefiting from my endo scraping that came with the cyst removal, so pain is mostly under control.
I will also say that I am not lowering my standards on quality just by adding quantity. Much like everything I put in my body, I pay attention to the ingredients and the source. And I certainly don’t plan to start guzzling bacon (I don’t like bacon, I know, I know!)
While Artboy simply added meat during the Italy trip, with running I need to know my body can handle it. I need to experiment a little. But since I learned that hummus and brussel sprouts, and all the other organic healthy amazing food I was eating constantly was actually causing me pain, eating meat hasn’t been as much of an issue. What I will do headed forward is anyone’s guess. I’ll let my body decide.
So how has training on a meat rich diet gone? Well not so good…my energy is kinda low. I can’t tell you if this is burn out, related to the meds, related to the cough I picked up in June, the entire long crazy year, or just a diet that doesn’t work for me while training. Most likely a combination of all those factors and plenty more. I am accustomed enough to the meat at this point that I should be able to run the marathon without issue, and I will certainly be able to enjoy the rest of France.