Plagued by the obsession that I must look better!

I remember a time when I didn’t have a care in the world about my body, didn’t ever look in the mirror and think, “I look fat!”  It’s simple, I wasn’t fat and never had been so why I would think I looked that way?

I grew up an athlete.  I started swimming practically before I was even able to walk. I also started tumbling down the hallway in our house at about the same age...I’d say I was about 3.  That was when my parents decided I was destined to be a gymnast.

I was a competitive gymnast and swimmer for most of my childhood through high school until I sprained the ligaments in my lower back, ended up in a body cast for close to a month and my gymnastic career came to an abrupt halt.  I could still swim but swimming took a backseat to gymnastics.  

When I had to quit, I was devastated.  I really didn’t know what to do athletically at this point in my life because I didn’t really like anything else.  This was when the problems began, problems with self-esteem, self-consciousness, self depravation and self loathing.  

The girl who was so lively, goofy and happy with who she saw when she looked in the mirror, went away.  You see being an athletic child truly boosted my self-esteem and helped me to be strong, determined and motivated.  

...And, being an athletic child meant weight issues just didn’t exist. I was thin and toned and didn’t even have the faintest idea of what it meant to not have a good figure.  I was certainly NOT one of those high school girls who walked around ‘strutting my stuff.’ I had this cute little figure, but was clueless about it.

So, what happened to change this strong, determined, motivated young lady?  How did years of feeling good in my own skin go to feeling insecure, ‘less than’ and unattractive? 

I remember exactly when it happened.  Well, I guess I can pinpoint the year.  It was freshman year of college.  I had gone ‘across the river’ from St. Paul to Minneapolis to live in the dorm at the University of MN.  

I was living the life.  I didn’t have my parents around to tell me what to do, I could come and go as I pleased and I LOVED IT.  Problem was, because I no longer was the athlete I was in high school, I wasn’t constantly burning calories like my body was used to.

I was drinking A LOT and eating late night pizzas. Suddenly, the 100 pound girl who started college was up 15+ pounds.

When they say it’s so easy to put on weight, they aren’t kidding.  How did I end my first year of college at least 15 pounds heavier than when I started?  Where did this weight come from and WHY WHY WHY was I suddenly FAT?

I moved home for the summer and I gained even more weight because I was working at a restaurant and eating all of their food.  When I moved back to school sophomore year, I moved into an apartment with a friend who was SKINNY and the more I looked at her, the fatter I felt.  

I was miserably unhappy.  I constantly compared myself to everyone.  I always felt like the ugly overweight girl next to all of my pretty, skinny friends.

Instead of learning to eat healthy foods, get on an exercise program and lose weight the healthy way, I started purging. I had a friend who did it.  A friend who we tried doing an intervention on because she was so skinny, she was emaciated.  

I remember being horrified by what she was doing to herself and being scared that something would happen to her.  But one day, when I tried to put on one of my favorite pair of jeans and they didn’t fit, a light bulb went on.

If my friend could do this and be skinny, why couldn’t I?  And so the saga began...I started starving myself at first.  I wouldn’t eat anything but grapes for an entire week and I’d drink a ton of water to help me feel full.  Then, I would go to the gym and work out and I would be so happy when I was done, happy that I just burned calories I didn’t even eat...the weight should’ve just started melting off, right?

Well, not really.  

After starving myself for a while, I’d lose control and I would binge on everything I could get my hands on.  After I was done, I would feel so horrible about what I’d done and I was absolutely sure about how much weight I was going to gain from what I just ate that I’d purge it all up.  

When I’d wake up every morning, I’d look at myself in the mirror from the side. Purging can bloat your face so from the side, it would appear that I had a double chin and what did a double chin mean to me?  It meant I was fat! 

So it became this vicious cycle.  Starve, work out, binge, purge, work out again, starve, work out., binge, purge...look at my fat face and belly in mirror and start all over...

It’s sort of a long involved story about how I had my ‘moment of clarity‘ when I realized I needed some serious help and I started the recovery process.  But after about a year of this insane behavior, I went home and told my parents I was Bulimic, that I needed help and I started going to therapy.

About 6 months before I told my parents I was a Bulimic, I also admitted I was an alcoholic.  My life was just a mess.  My escape from all of the feelings I had inside about myself was alcohol and food.  The day I quit drinking was August 20, 1990.  I have not had a drink since.

Recovering from Bulimia though, wasn’t nearly as easy.  Not that quitting drinking was easy however, once I made the decision I never looked back.  I went through the hard times but I just made the decision that I wasn’t going to drink again and I haven’t.

Food is different though.  We must eat to live so therefore, we have to learn to eat, in a healthy way.

I struggled for a long long time and at first, I switched addictions.  I became an avid WORKOUT FIEND.  I can remember working out sometimes for 3 hours or more, per day.  What I ate, dictated how long I worked out and how intense the workout was.

I also did have slips for a couple of years after I started therapy.  I would overeat and then be afraid that I was going to put on weight so I would ‘get rid of it.’  But then, like I did when I quit day I just made the decision that I was done hurting myself this way and I wasn’t going to do it again.

And I didn’t.  But that didn’t mean I still didn’t have the negative inner thoughts, the self-esteem issues, the insecure feelings, the self-loathing.  I still had it all and I had to figure out how to get better. 

Recovery as a whole really helped with all of this.  I attended AA regularly and I just applied everything I was learning there to my eating disorder.

But even years after, the eating was always the hardest part.  I never looked quite good enough.  I’d lost the weight I put on in college and when I look at pictures from that time, I looked darn good.  My belly was flat and hard and I had some great definition going on, all over my body.

But I was still plagued by this obsession that I must look better.  I tried different diets, even though I didn’t need to be on a diet. Or I’d try a new cleanse or a new wacky workout/nutrition regimen which really just meant I was still working out incessantly and not even remotely eating enough to compensate for the calories I was burning.

If a workout plan called for 30 minutes of something, I did 60.  If it provided a minimum amount of calories to eat per day, I ate less.  I was no longer binging and purging but I was still consumed by not gaining weight and in fact, plagued by the thought that I must drop more.  

I remember times when I’d be eating something ‘fattening’ and wonder if complete strangers would see what I was eating and think to themselves, “she should not be eating that.”  

I remember eating way too much at a meal and feeling like the button on my jeans was going to burst and white knuckling it so that I would NOT purge.  

I remember looking at my body in the mirror every morning before getting dressed to see how my abs looked, turning to the side and looking at myself from behind and then doing the exact same thing at night before going to bed to see if anything had changed.

I remember going to bed every night and going over in my head what I had eaten that day and either feeling guilty for something ‘bad’ I’d eaten or feeling good that I made it through the day without eating anything fattening.

I remember a time when I was baking cookies for a party I was going to and being so proud of myself for not eating any of the dough or any of the deliciously fresh, hot cookies I’d just baked. As if eating a cookie or two or some of the dough was the WORST thing I could ever do.

I remember obsessing about what I was going to eat when I was out with my friends because I wanted to ‘be good’ and have a healthy meal but what was I going to do if everyone wanted to go somewhere and share something I was afraid to eat. And then, I’d tell myself it was ok...that I was out for a special occasion and if I decided to splurge it was ok because I had worked out that day and I would DEFINITELY work out even harder the next day to burn off what I had eaten.

I remember being afraid to eat because I wasn’t sure if I could control myself from not eating too much and then having to fight the urge to purge.  This was especially difficult when I was home because I lived alone, with no one to see what I was doing.

It was EXHAUSTING and I needed relief.  

I’m not exactly sure when it happened but I did end up getting healthy.  I started to surround myself around people who were healthy.  I started running and had always wanted to run a marathon so the running friends I made, were healthy ones. They weren’t obsessive/compulsive people only focused on being thin, or too skinny for that matter.  They really just wanted to be fit and healthy.  This is what I wanted so desperately to be, so I did what they did.

I started reading and learning about what it means to eat healthy foods and nourish your body for optimal health.  I started to love the person looking back at me in the mirror and accept myself the way I was, no matter what my body looked like.  

I became, fit and healthy and HAPPY!  And it was contagious.  I had family members and friends who noticed and would start asking me if I could help them get fit and healthy.

Gradually, things just got better and I no longer thought about every last bit I put into my mouth and I didn’t obsess about my body anymore.

It was and still is a one day at a time deal though.  There was a time in my life, when I was at my lowest, when I didn’t care about my health.  I didn’t care about what I was doing to my body because I was obsessed with being SKINNY.  I didn’t want to be fit, toned and healthy.  I just wanted to be skinny and I would keep doing whatever I could to get there.

Today, even though I’m at a point in my life where I choose life, health and happiness over being skinny...I still have days when I don’t feel that great about myself and still wish I could ‘drop a few pounds.’  I like to think that’s ‘normal’ for lack of a better word as everyone has their bad days.  Fortunately, those days are VERY few and far between but I still have them every once in a blue moon.

Today, it is way more important for me to be healthy, inside and live a long, healthy, happy life.

The bonus is that I get to love my body.

My choice is life, what's yours?

I was thinking the other day about how much I miss my grandparents.  I only knew three of them, my mother's father passed away before I was born but the three that I did know had been with me for most of my life up until two and a half years ago.

The last of my grandparents, my father's nana, passed away when I was 40.  I feel quite fortunate to have had her with me for 40 years of my life.  Not many people can say that.

So, this got me thinking about how great the genes in my family are.  My nana was 96 when she passed away.  I also have a great aunt on my mother's side who passed away just shy of 101 and a great uncle on my father's side who passed away at 99.

But do those genes really matter?  If we have great genes does that mean we can take life for granted and assume we're going to live that long too because we have ancestors who did?

I used to hang out with people in high school and college who believed they were going to die someday, so they may as well have as much fun as possible, no matter what the cost to their health and well being.  Who am I kidding?  I used to be one of those people myself.

Now I have an entirely different outlook.  I am afraid of death, mostly because I love life so much.  I no longer want life to pass me by with a 'devil don't care' attitude.

Did I just grow up, did I 'see the light' or did I just change?  Who knows for sure?  What I do know is my life is incredibly precious to me and I want to do whatever I can to make it a good one. 

So what do I do?  I nourish my body with deliciously nutritious foods, exercise on a regular basis to keep my heart strong, surround myself with like-minded people who I love and care about and I do all that I can to maintain a healthy lifestyle. 

Being healthy, mentally, physically and spiritually is essential to me.  Without my health, what do I have?

...And, I want to continue to evolve each and every day into an even healthier person than I was the day before.

How do I do that?  I read, I listen, I learn...and then, I implement change.  For lots of people, change is scary.  For me, change means growth and how can growth be a bad thing?

So, what about you?  How do you want to spend your days on this earth?

It's inevitable that we're all going to die someday.  Do you want to make the most of your time on this earth by being healthy so you can have longevity?  We can all be healthier in one way or another so why not aspire to doing just that?

My challenge for you is to start living a healthier life today in any way you know how.  You only have one chance at life, don't let it slip away.  Live it to the fullest.

One of my favorite quotes from the movie, the 'Shawshenk Redemption' is "Get Busy Living or Get Busy Dying."  I choose to get busy living.  What do you chose?

Drink Your Water Before It's Too Late (My Scary Ambulance Story) 

A couple of winters ago, my boyfriend Brad and I went on a trip to Puerto Rico with another couple.  We were there to do a 3 day bike ride around the entire island with 625 other riders…roughly 380 miles of riding in 3 days.   

This was to be a SPECTACULAR experience, one we could hardly wait to embark on.

We arrived around 4:00 PM the day before the first ride was to start.  There was so much to be done, including getting our bikes unpacked and put back together, picking up our ride packets, getting our gear prepared for the first morning's ride and making sure we had a good, hearty meal.  

The first day’s ride was 154 miles.  At 6:00 AM, all 625 of us began the first 20 miles together before splitting off into three groups based on pace...'A group,' B group' and 'C group.' 

When the ride starts, it's pitch black outside because it's so early.  Of course, we all have lights on our bikes but as I'm riding alongside my friend my main focus is seeing where I'm going, avoiding holes in the street, paying attention to where the other riders are around me (not everyone on this ride is an experienced rider) and just soaking it all in.   

I'm not thinking about hydration...

About 30-40 miles in, my arms started to feel fatigued and achy.  

Now there were some pretty steep declines (due to the pretty steep inclines) and I'd never ridden in the mountains at this point in my riding career. 

So, I just assumed my arms were sore because of my death grip riding down these steep hills, the multiple holes in the road that we had to be careful to avoid, an occasional iguana (I'm not kidding, there was an occasional iguana in the road) and the sometimes 'not so smooth' terrain.  

I just kept telling myself to loosen my grip and relax my arms so the pain would go away.  

Little did I know, this was the beginning of dehydration.  

Now, I was already dehydrated from our previous travel day...traveling does that to you. I wasn't thinking about the water bottles sitting in my bottle cages on the bike (that I should have been drinking from) during the first 20 miles and at 6:00 AM when we started, it was already over 80 degrees and devastatingly humid.

At about 70 miles, my quads started to cramp up.  I had to get off the bike and two men who were riding near me stopped to help me out.  They gave me salt tablets and pickle juice (apparently, pickle juice is one of the best things to prevent dehydration due to it’s high sodium content) and one of them rubbed my legs for me. Of course, being the diehard that I am, this was all I needed and I was on my way again. 

At mile 85, I somehow managed to make it up a 4 mile climb without cramping.  Not sure if this was the pickle juice kicking in or the fact that I didn't stand up during the entire incline even though the last 1/2 mile was the steepest part…pretty much like a wall! 

At mile 92 when I got to lunch and had made it up that hill without cramping I thought I was home free and the remaining 62 miles would be smooth sailing.  I actually thought, "I only have 62 miles left, I'm good to go." Think again...

I made it to mile 120 but unfortunately at that point, my quads, hamstrings, inner thighs, hips, glutes...yeah, pretty much my entire body cramped up so badly that I literally COULD NOT move.  I hunched over my bike just as one of the ride ambulances drove up.  

They had to lift me off the bike and put me on a stretcher in order to get me in the ambulance.  I ended up having IVs and was severely sick to my stomach.  

Needless to say, it was a miserable night and I was unable to ride on day two.

While this ranks as one of the worst experiences of my life, it was definitely one that I learned a lot from and now I'm passing those lessons on to you.  Here they are:

  • If you're flying to do an athletic event, if at all possible give yourself a day in between your travel day and the day the event begins.  Because I didn't want to get up every 15 minutes to use the bathroom on the plane, I barely drank.  HUGE MISTAKE as traveling already dehydrates you.
  • If your event is located in a hot climate during the winter and you live in a climate that has a cold winter, your body won't acclimate as quickly as it should.  Take precautions like, wearing 'arm coolers.'  Not to be confused with ‘arm warmers’, these are sleeves that shield your skin from the sun and keep you cooler because you can spray water from your water bottle on them which will help keep your body cooler.  They’ll also prevent sunburn.
  • Pay attention to staying hydrated.  I'm generally a person that says you should drink when you're thirsty but there are some serious people out there who think they’re camels...DON’T BE A CAMEL.  You should drink every 15 minutes, especially in hot, humid conditions.
  • If there is ice at a rest stop, put a chunk down your jersey and in your helmet.  It will melt quickly but it will help you stay cool and comfortable.
  • Take salt tablets.  Salt reduces heat stress and muscle cramping and helps maintain electrolyte levels, all of which are factors that may cause dehydration.  My favorite are SaltStick Caps.
  • Put water or a carbohydrate drink in one of your bottles and put an electrolyte drink in the other.  The carbohydrate drink will replenish your calories, giving you more energy and the electrolyte drink will restore your electrolytes and help to prevent dehydration.
  • Mostly, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. Had I known I was starting to get dehydrated at mile 30, I could have gotten a ride to the next rest stop, restored my electrolytes a bit and gotten back on the bike to finish out the day instead of ending up in the ambulance at mile 120.

It was unfortunate that I traveled all the way to Puerto Rico to do this ride and have this experience. I had no choice but to rest all day on day 2…I could NOT have ridden had I tried.  But one thing's for sure...I'll never let dehydration get me like this again!

I did end up being able to ride on day 3 and I rode the entire 130 miles with no issues because I did everything I mentioned above.  

I really can’t complain that I didn’t get to ride on day two...I rode 250 two January...during one of the snowiest winters in history in Minnesota.  

Plus, riding into Old San Juan with all 625 riders and thousands of spectators cheering for us was one of the most incredible experiences of my life.

I'd say one of the most important things I learned that day is that severe dehydration, like what I’ve described CAN BE FATAL.  This is something I did not know when I was sitting in the SAG wagon with my IVs hanging from the hook by the door while negotiating with the nurse sitting next to me how I was going to ride on day two.  

So write my lessons down, memorize them, ingrain them in your brain and DO NOT forget them next time you're out on a long ride in the hot, hot heat (or during any endurance sport).  They could very well...SAVE YOUR LIFE! 

Ditch the Scale – New Ways to Measure Your Weight Loss and Fitness Progress

(Guest post by Jessica Covington)

I have a new scale, and it’s a crazy-maker.

Deciding to go kinda fancy, I bought a model that measures (and tracks in memory) weight, BMI, percentages of both lean muscle and fat, hydration level, visceral fat, and body age. It’s a pretty amazing piece of technology.

It’s a little TOO amazing. Scales aren’t really even my cup of tea; I got it mostly for my husband and his weight-loss goals. But I got hooked on it in just a few days’ time. At first, I weighed once a day. Then it was twice. My record-high number of weigh-ins in a single day was 5. My trigger was the “body age” reading — I started at body age 32 (even though I’m actually 41). I felt pretty good about that, but the next day I was at 30.

Hell, who doesn’t want to age in reverse?

I decided to push the envelope, dropping weight to see that number tick down. I got to body age 23, but I was miserable from eating nothing but celery for a week. THAT is crazy. (See, even fitness professionals can fall prey to the seduction of the scale.)

Weight can have completely normal fluctuations of several pounds over the course of a week and even within just one day!

It’s foolish to get hung up on it and pin your mood, behavior, and diet on a number — but I did it, for a couple of weeks, actually. Finally, I got tired of feeling obligated to a bad mood just because the number went up a tick.

That’s when it hit me: there is entirely too much emphasis on scales and measures in this world of fitness and weight loss. I have known this in my head (and even counseled others on it) for a while, but had not encountered the feeling first-hand until this wake-up.

I started thinking about different, saner, more meaningful ways to measure what we really want – methods of measuring the progress made while eating right and getting good exercise. Here’s a start:

1. Benchmark by your best clothes. Find an outfit — any top and bottom that you love — and put them on. Take photos, if you like. Note where they’re tight or loose, and how that measures up with your overall loss or toning goals. Get to your calendar, and schedule a time once a week (no more and no less) to try on the exact same outfit and note your results.

2. Take the stairs. If you have stairs at home or at work (or any place nearby and easily accessible), get on ‘em. Run or walk them at top speed without skipping stairs — do it once if that’s what you can manage, or several times if you’re already a rockstar. Go to your max and make a note of it. How many flights did you run? How long did it take you (a stopwatch or an app will be handy here)? Most importantly, how do you feel? (On a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is lying in bed and 10 is at the brink of death, where do you rank?) Repeat this exercise once every 2 weeks — weekly wouldn’t be bad, if you’re the type who’s patient with seeing results. But don’t “practice” the drill in between measurements to better your results — focus on your other regular exercise and just observe how this benchmark changes over time.

3. Sprint to the corner. Similar to the stair method, you can do this on any measured distance. Choose a running track or just the block you live on — it doesn’t matter as long as it’s consistently the same space. If you’re dealing with a short distance, run (or walk) your top speed as many times as you can. Track your time, repetitions, and perceived exertion on the 1-10 scale above — and avoid practice drills. Another useful measure: the time it takes you to return to a feeling of rest. Once you finish the sprint and you’re gasping for air, start the timer and let it run until you feel your breath is back to a normal pace and you no longer feel tired from the exertion. (The logic here is that the faster your cardiorespiratory system recovers, the fitter you are.)

4. The good old President’s Test. Remember that semi-annual routine your PE teacher put you through in grade school? Dig it out and try it again. It may seem antiquated, but it’s actually a really solid indicator of overall fitness for kids and adults alike. Their website explains it much better than I can – check it out

When you’re tempted to hop on the scale for the 5th time this week (or heaven forbid, in one DAY), take a breath and think about what you’re really measuring.

Does your life really hang on a number? Or are you in this fitness game to feel better, live longer, enjoy more while you’re here?

The 4 benchmarks above do a far better job of measuring these things than a scale ever will.

If you’re looking for a few ways to move the proverbial needle, though, even though you’re not testing with it, see some of my prior posts on interval training, including Tabata intervals, sneaking toning into a regular day, and starting your own walking group. You can also find some great DVDs and books via Amazon.

Now, let’s hear it — what are YOUR ideas about different ways to measure health progress without stepping on a scale?


Jessica Covington is a dance and yoga enthusiast whose life went from spontaneous freedom filled days when she could dance and do yoga to her heart's content to becoming a busy mom and discovering the difficulty that comes with finding a class at the moment she was available to take one.  

Determined to find a solution to her problem of finding the time to fit in what she loves to do, Jessica created, a site that provides an easy way to find out what class she can take at the moment she has free time.  You can check Jessica out at at, on Facebook and on Twitter.  Check out her entry on ways to measure your weight loss WITHOUT getting on the scale, a philosophy I wholeheartedly believe in.

How to Run a Marathon Instead of Letting it Run You

Recently, I was cleaning out some of my cabinets and I found a journal I kept while I was training for my first marathon. It was nice to take a trip down memory lane and remember the beauty of the first marathon and how it feels to have NO IDEA what's in store for you.

Now that I'm training for triathlons, I realize the lessons I learned from marathon training that date all the way back to my first one...Twin Cities Marathon, 1999.

I was so consumed with my training, so focused on making sure I didn't miss a training run or workout that I didn't make time for anyone or anything else.

I recall my 'non-runner' or rather my 'non-marathoner' friends being frustrated because they hadn't seen me for weeks. In my journal I wrote, "Don't they get it? I'm training to run 26.2 miles...this is a dream I've had since I was a child watching my dad run marathons. Now, I'm doing it and at this point in time it is my top priority so everyone is just going to have to wait until I've crossed that finish line and my life can get back to normal. I can't help it if they don't understand."

Looking back and reading that now, I see how that was maybe just a touch on the selfish side.

Here's what I've learned that I can pass on to you, the first time marathoner, the first time triathlete or the athlete who can't seem to fit much else in besides your workouts.

While it is important to get your workout in, it's also important to:

Find and follow a training plan that prescribes higher intensity and lower volume and also advocates additional hours per week to 'have a life.' While you're getting in some intense training, you're also getting prepared for an your event with a peak training load that makes every hour as productive as possible.

Make sure to communicate your plan with the people whom with you spend the most of your time. If you communicate your schedule to those you love, the less frustrated they'll be when they ask you do something and you remind them you have a training workout scheduled.

Train when most people are sleeping or winding down for the night. If you have a family (or even if you don't but you want to have a social life in the evening), get your workout in before everyone wakes up in the morning. Then, ride your trainer in the garage at night after the kids are in bed and force yourself to get out there. Have a TV in front of you, great music or a book to ease your boredom. It's hard to get started, but you'll get used to it and feel a sense of accomplishment when you're done. Just try to be done within 2 hours of bedtime so you can sleep easily. You can get an intense hour session in on the trainer that is just as efficient as a hard ride outdoors. On your longer weekend training sessions, get up early and get going. A 5 hour ride or 3 hour ride followed by a 50 minute run that gets you home before noon on a Saturday still leaves a lot of the day and weekend for other activities.

Schedule a "ride or run to the event" workout into your weekend training program. If the whole family is packing up and heading to the beach or a barbecue, run or ride there while they drive. It seems less disruptive to the rest of the family if you help load up the car and then hit the road 30 minutes before they leave and arrive 30 minutes after them.

Train on your way to work or on your lunch break. Commuting can be a great way to add miles to your routine. Ride your bike to and from work when possible. If you work from home, hop on your bike to run an errand instead of getting in the car. Go for a run or hit the gym for a swim or Yoga class during your lunch break. Pick a day that you can leave work early and run home.

Include friends in your workouts. Go for a run or a bike ride with friends who enjoy running or riding. Meet a friend at the gym to weight train together. Run or ride to/from a friend's house for a visit instead of driving.

Maximize the rest of your time more wisely. You'll probably find this comes a bit more naturally as your training progresses. I know for me when I'm training for an event, I manage my time more efficiently simply because I don't have the luxury to procrastinate or be unproductive. Dedicate the limited free time you have to spending it with family and friends.

Most importantly, know that you're human and not perfect. Try to set realistic goals and be flexible with your program. Most of us aren't going to win the race or even finish on the podium, that is if we'd like to maintain any sense of balance in our lives. Be OK with skipping a session because your body needs a rest, you have another commitment that takes precedence over your workout for that day or you just simply need to spend some quality time with someone in your life.

Always remember, if you follow most of the prescribed training you'll be good to go by race day. Keep it all in perspective and you'll finish the race strong. Don't forget to enjoy the process and feel good about your accomplishment!