pump up the jasmine

I had a doctors appointment yesterday. It didn’t go very well, diabetes-wise. I have to see a liver specialist. I asked for a referral for a nutritionist. I wish I could blame this all on my liver but really it’s all my fault, innit?

In addition to all of this, I have to start exercising. I’ve gained 18 pounds since last July. Eighteen pounds! Granted, the weight loss that preceded that gain was due to my diabetes, but that’s not the point. I liked to pretend the extra weight  wasn’t there but doctor’s appointment weigh-ins have confirmed the gain as it happened. Blech.

Anyway, I think I agreed to do the Couch-to-5K Running Plan with Elisa and Kelly. They had me at a weak moment. I was eating lunch with them after my appointment. We were at Primebar, and Kelly had just given us the hook-up with free appetizers, and I was facedown in a salad. I had been moaning about my health shit, and they were talking about how they were going to do Couch-to-5K only they kept saying “we” and I wasn’t really paying attention because clearly when they said “we” they didn’t mean “Kelly and Elisa”, they meant Kelly, Elisa, and me.

Motherfucker, I might save my own goddamn fat ass after all.

So I started making a list of things I need.

My geriatric raver shoes, the New Balance 1122’s. I wrote about getting them here. I didn’t mean to buy them in the first place. I walked into the Lincoln Park New Balance store meaning to buy some cute-ass kicks for, you know, walking around and looking cute in. But no. At the time, I was in the habit of doing these walks for charity with a group of folks from work. They’d run, I’d walk, and then afterward we’d take pictures of ourselves for the corporate intranet to demonstrate our company spirit. I made the mistake of telling the cute salesman about this hobby of mine and so of course he directed me away from the cute shit to the good shit. These shoes are comfortable as balls and make me an inch taller but weigh about ten pounds (each!) and are totally ugly. At the moment, I can only locate one shoe. I suspect the other is hiding under one of my laundry piles.

New sweatpants/running shorts. When I went to Paris, I packed jeans and some yoga pants from Old Navy. I thought the yoga pants, stretchy and comfy and black, were perfect for slumping around. Alas, I was wrong. The waistband would slip down under my gut, so I’d have to yank them up every few paces. Which, in fashionable Paris, is not the fucking move. Also, the legs were just a little too long, so they’d drag under my heels, and again, the pants would slip down. If I hadn’t been wearing a knee-length coat throughout my time in France, the nursery rhyme “I see London, I see France, I see Jasmine’s underpants” would have been too fucking real.

Motivation. I posted the link for Couch-to-5K on Facebook with the comment “Am I really doing this? Really?” to Facebook, and this is the response I’ve gotten so far:

  • It has been liked by seven different people.
  • It’s received a total of fifteen comments from seven people. A sampling of these comments:
    • Celi F.: “I am doing this!”
    • Jen A.C.: “Oh kick ass! Go for it!”
    • Nick G.: “When are you starting? My indolent ass needs to get in shape, and I’ll totally do it with you. I need moral support!”
    • Nora F.: “i’m doing it! i love it. try this podcast: runningintoshape.com. that carli is just adorable. and it doesn’t make you hate life like you’d think”
    • Caroline C.: “go jasmine! go jasmine!”
    • Magda S.: “Good luck! It’s much easier than you think.”
    • Derek V.: “Jasmine, this is great! Let me know when you run your 5K – I’d be happy to join you/provide encouragement/buy a beer afterwards.”

    Holy shit, if I’d known this running business could get me so much love, links to useful podcasts, good advice and, most importantly, FREE BEER, I would have started doing this AGES AGO.

    My friends, you are awesome and I love you every day. No joke. Somewhere in the depths of my body, my pancreas and my liver are having a little party and writing thank you cards to me.

    The only thing I’m confused or worried about is doing all that counting and timing myself, at least in the beginning. Like how much fumbling will I be doing with the timer on my iPhone while I’m trying to work this shit out?

    Brisk five-minute warmup walk, then:

    • Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)
    • Walk 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
    • Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes)
    • Walk 1/4 mile (or 3 minutes)
    • Jog 1/2 mile (or 5 minutes

    This isn’t my first 5K. My last 5K was ages ago, the Nike Run Hit Remix run which came to Chicago in 2006. I did it with Will, Adrienne, and Kathy. Actually, we had dinner before the run. Once the run started, they got on pretty well, while I made a half-assed attempt to run, then jog, then at least try to stay upright. Actually, it was a 5-mile race. That’s, like, 8K. Damn. No wonder I stunk. But that wasn’t even the worst of it. Read the original recap (excerpted from here) below:

    Thursday, August 17: Okay, so I was nervouse about the Nike run. Not only because I didn’t think I trained well enough, or long enough, but because I had dinner at the Park Grill with Kathy, Adrienne, Will, and Robin (who cheered us on) and was sorely tempted to eat a big burger. I had the fish, drank water and diet coke, and then walked down to the start with my friends. We were among 10,000 people who were going to run a 5 mile route which would be dotted with live musical acts. Local acts got in on the fun, but the main attractions would be Young MC and Digital Underground, with De La Soul headlining the post-race show in the park. The start was slow. I trotted, shuffled, and jogged until I fell into a speed-walk. The Chicago skyline at night in summer is really beautiful, and it’s rare that I can get a view as privileged as I got walking down LSD, past the museum campus and Soldier Field, down into… what appeared to be the parking garage for McCormick Place. But even before that, Young MC was the first big act on the race — a great energetic act to start the evening. After him, Digital Underground! I stopped for the ‘Humpty Dance’ but left when Humpty Hump, having jumped into the crowd to perform, groped up on me when he sang “Hey yo fat girl c’mere are ya ticklish?” and I decided to just move on. That kinda ruined the rest of the night for me. I felt kinda gross, and it was all in fun, but I didn’t feel fun. I just felt fat and slow and wanting to get away. So I did. I jogged. I walked. I shuffled. I moved past the Elvis impersonator (who gave me a “Bless you, mama!” from his mini-stage when I jogged past, cheering for Elvis as I did), the bag-pipers, the *awesome* Taiko drummers, and the local bands who won contests to play the race. Around the aquarium I made friends with a Mexican journalist who was in Chicago as a tourist — she’d volunteered to walk the race, taking pictures for her running friends with their cameras while she walked and soaked in the view. I finished in 1 hour, 45 minutes — I will not even tell you how long it took Will aka “Iron Man” to finish. I know I was one of the last people to finish. But I finished, and look — I even got the (incredibly unflattering) picture  to prove it.

    So, um, yeah. Funny, I guess, but also traumatic. Which is pretty much the story of fat and me thus far. But there’s too much there to unpack right now.

    Running and I don’t have the best history, if there’s even much of one. Okay, maybe not running and me but me and Humpty Hump from Digital Underground. In any case, I have no problem listening to Digital Underground now, but if I see that ass Humpty Hump anywhere near me, I’m going to start running in the other direction. And when I run, I’m gonna be blasting this in my earbuds. Take it away, Sondra Prill!

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    6 Comments

    Filed under health

    6 responses to “pump up the jasmine

    1. Get the C25K app for your iPhone. It tells you when to run, when to walk and will play your music in the background.

      C25K was my gateway drug to becoming a real physically active person. You can do it!

    2. Elisa

      If you need new shoes, I suggest going to Fleet Feet on Saturday after your voice class. They will put you in the right shoes. That’s where I got mine.

    3. my wife was just telling me about the couch to 5k thing too. Maybe I should join you.

      I have no iphone to make me stick to it though! 😦

    4. Pingback: current obsessions « this is jasmine

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