My friend Urmy Urmy La La (UULL) is a runner. And she’s a fairly amazing runner. She actually ran a marathon a couple months ago, y’all. Like, 26.2 miles. Of running. And she ran it in wet socks because of an unfortunate puddle incident early in the race. So she ran 26.2 miles while forming the biggest blood blister* you ever did see. She’s hardcore.

She’s in Germany right now and we conduct our friendship mostly via Skype. I like to talk to her about all things Fitness. She’s kind of my guru in that area. In fact, she’s visiting Seattle next week and has promised to take me to my gym (remember? I joined a gym? Yeah, I’d forgotten that too.) and show me how to use all the scary equipment. I’m thankful for my UULL and think everyone should have a UULL in their lives.
Recently, after the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week, I asked her what she does when she needs something comforting in her life. I was expecting her to share a recipe or wax poetically about chocolate and mashed taters. Instead, she told me she runs. Like, something bad happens and her instinct is to go for a run. Like with her feet.
Does. Not. Compute.
My instincts vary when I’m sad or in need of comfort. Usually they take the form of delicious food. Last week they took the form of cheeseburgers. Cheap, greasy, DELICIOUS $1.40 cheeseburgers from Seattle’s famous drive-in. I ate a lot, y’all. Like, don’t even want to tell you because then you’d be clutching at your pearls** in horror and judging me like whoa, a lot. It never even occurred to me to take my stress and channel it into exercise and I can’t even blame the Sparkleboot. I didn’t even think about running. I only thought about cheeseburgers.
This always happens. I get on track with my goals (eating well and exercising) and then I get a little bit smug. “Oh, look at me!” I think. “I’m totally eating well! My pants are totally looser now! This dress fits better! I’m going to lose this weight like it’s nothing, yo!” And the minute I have those thoughts, Smug Me is beaten down by Fat Me and the result is cheeseburgers.
Here’s how it happens. I’m dancing through my life and then BAM, shit goes down. And nearly immediately, I start to get cravings. Nothing specific, usually just a broad category. Something salty, I’ll think. With a little crunch. Oooh, and some cheese. And sour cream. And then the next thing you know, I’m eating a cookie sheet of homemade bean and cheese nachos, which really are just a vehicle for the loads of sour cream and guacamole I put on them. Or maybe I’ll start thinking of something sweet. With a little bit of gooey. And some spice. And that turns into warm, homemade, fresh from the oven chocolate chip cookies with extra chocolate chips and ice cold milk.
Never have I ever had some stressful event lead to cravings of putting on sneakers and pounding the pavement. Never have I craved a trip to the gym or a yoga class. Never have I taken a single yoga class, truth be told, even though I have a pretty pink yoga mat in my car. It’s been there since I joined the gym. My boss gave it to me to help inspire me. Clearly, it worked.
I’m writing this for two reasons:
1) Confession is good for the soul. Maybe if I tell y’all about my secret shame, I won’t eat a cheeseburger this week.
2) Advice: what do you guys do for comfort? Are any of you recovered emotional-eaters? If so, HOW? HOW DID YOU DO IT? PLEASE GIVE ME THE MAGIC SECRET!
I’m sorry I got so shout-y there but I’m getting desperate. The Sparkleboot comes off in just days. I need to stop these bad habits immediately. I want to be a girl who runs when she’s sad. I want to channel my emotions into healthy habits instead of channeling them into cheeseburgers and nachos.
But y’all. NACHOS.
Help. Someone fix me. In return, I’ll send you all the cheeseburgers I don’t eat.
*Sorry I said ‘blood blister.’
**Y’all all wear pearls 24/7, yes?
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