Back to basics

I'm not even sure what this title means … I need to type it out. Rarely do a write a title before writing a blog post, but that the line that's stuck in my head. I have been thinking for a week now about a lot of running-related things, even though I can't run much. I ran a mile on my recent 5-day trip to my in-laws' house in Ohio, but that was it. It wasn't even a good mile. Through all the ups and downs that running has brought me over the past seven years, there's no doubt that this year has been the second best running year of my life. The best will always be 2004, the year that it started. Had it not been for that year, I wouldn't be doing this today.

Despite such an awesome 2010, it's ending on what many people would think is a sour note. Oddly though, I was only mad and sad about my knee problems for a couple of days. Now I just have to take it for what it is – an opportunity. It is an opportunity to get back to the basic things of working out that I should have been doing all along. Lifting weights, push-ups, sit-ups, walking. Just not much running.

I have been paranoid in the past few weeks that not running very much will mess up what I have done on the scale this year. This morning I was exactly 183, which is actually about a half-pound from what I was marathon week. I couldn’t have been more pleased. While Thanksgiving wasn't the best of eating holidays, I did something unimaginable, and I'm not sure if anyone at the table even noticed: I had only one helping of food for dinner. I've been trying to eat slower and chew my food more, and so far it's working. It's back to basics. It's what worked years ago and with taking most of my running away for a little while, it's what I have to do. My goal for December is to maintain – if I stay at 14 pounds lost for the year, I'll be completely satisfied. If another pound goes away, then that's an even bigger victory.

As far as running goes, I'm so close to 1,000 miles that I can taste it. Only 4.6 to go. The odd thing is, I'm not overly excited about it. Yes, it's going to be nice to get there, but I'm not getting there at 100 percent. I'll get there in half-mile or mile increments sometime in the next couple of weeks. A couple of months ago I was ready to party when I hit the mark, but now it's very anticlimactic. It's like a really good movie with the plot line falling completely apart in the last 5 minutes. The mileage just isn't important to me right now; getting healthy is. All I want for Christmas (besides my annual Christmas wish-list post coming soon) is a knee that can go for more than a mile without hurting.

So … it's back to basics. And when I can run normally again, it'll be back to basics with that too.