Thursday, June 9, 2011

Wow, I’m far later than I wanted to be with this post.  Things got a bit crazy over the last week and something had to give.  I didn’t exactly break my neck during the last week of the quarter (yes, the beloved quarter system of this grad school is fantastic thank you) but I didn’t feel comfortable banging out blog posts when I should have been finalizing projects.  What I didn’t feel bad about was getting my miles in, which I was somehow able to do thanks in large part to a very understanding wife.  (This is perhaps a post for another day, but the best possible training partner you can have is an understanding spouse who doesn’t feel it necessary to bust your chops about all of the time you're spending by yourself.)  I also didn’t feel bad about another practice of mine, beer drinking.

Generally speaking, I have only a few habits that one might consider less than healthy and nearly quotidian.  One of them is that I smoke a pipe.  Not one with a water filtration device designed for the purpose of smoking the wacky tobacky, though I am not fundamentally opposed, but rather one that looks like this:

Another is that I like to drink beer.  Not ridiculous amounts of it, although I find that as I get older I'm able to knock back a hell of a lot more than I was able to in my twenties without getting inebriated.  I didn't really drink that much in my twenties and I don't really drink that much now, but I think my body has gotten quite a bit better at metabolizing the booze.  (Then again I have the formal medical training of a high school aged babysitter, so take that for what it's worth.)  In any case, I do like to have a couple in the evenings, but that has been tempered by my desire not to throw-up on myself during the run I might have planned for the next day, as illustrated by the equation:

The other factor that I am only now starting to experience is the rehydration issue.  Many of my runs take place in the afternoon and I have to be conscious of my timing lest I start a beer waaaaaay too soon after knocking out a 10 mile run.  This leads to a sort of cascade effect where I get this itchy kind of headache that won’t go away and lingers on until the next morning.  I like to avoid taking painkillers but headaches are something that just drives me insane.  I can deal with knee pain or back pain but headaches kick my ass beyond measure.

As for the fat factor, I’m a steady state 185lbs regardless of how hard I hit the gym anymore.  I think at 33 years old I’ve finally gotten to the point where I am what I am unless I do something completely drastic like Crossfit + ultramarathon + super diet.  I don’t particularly like to be miserable in EVERY phase of my life, so I think I should just be content with the old 185 number.  My point here is that the beer does little to my weight, but it does affect my state of mind.

From what I can tell, my sleep patterns kind of go to crap after a few too many (perhaps 4 or more) and that in turn trashes my state of mind during the run.  I hate being tired.  Many of my Army buddies always talk about their “auto alarm clock” after so many years of getting up early . . .uh, not me.  I’ll crash until 10 am every day if you let me.

So, in summation and based on virtually no valid scientific testing whatsoever, I might recommend the following: moderation.  Shocker I know, but then again, it’s not advice you had to pay for either.

By Marcus with No comments


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