Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Tempo Tuesday and Evil Drug Dealers

My second day of the Higdon Advanced Half Marathon Training called for hills.  It wasn't convenient for me to head up north, so I chose a 5 mile tempo run, instead.  I wore my bright yellow, water-resistant G-shock Casio watch.  I noticed I hit Mile 1 in an easy 8:11.  At ten minutes I picked up the pace for the next twelve minutes.  I guessed that it was somewhere between my 5k and 10k pace (Whatever that means.  I judge by my effort.  In the training plans, I'm not sure if they mean PR pace or goal pace...so I just run by feel).  I ran the next ten minutes at a leisurely pace, picked it up again for four, then pulled back for the last four.  This is my version of a tempo run.  It seemed about right.  My watch read 39:50 when I returned home, a 7:56 pace.  I felt good.  It was a comfortable 34 degree morning.

I've been trying to eat better since we left for hell vacation.  I want to get down to my optimal racing weight so I cut back on some personal favorites, chocolate chip cookies and caffe mochas from Starbucks.  Alright fine!  I'm still eating chocolate chip cookies, but I'm having "one" (aka, two) a day instead of six.  I'm snacking on carrots and grape tomatoes, and drinking my coffee black with Equal (Less fattening does not always translate into healthy, I know).  I've lost a few pounds, but I've noticed my energy waning too.  I need to increase my protein intake, methinks.

Another reason I'm trying to improve my diet is because of my questionable cholesterol level.  It has been over 200 for as long as I can remember.  I think there have been two years in the past fifteen or twenty when it dipped below.  My doctor is more concerned than I am.  She knows that I exercise regularly, I am not obese, and I don't smoke anymore or drink a lot to oblivion anymore.  Yet, she wants to put me on meds if the number doesn't decrease in six months.  I am actually very against this and will put my foot down if she insists.  I did my own research and found an interesting article written by a Dr. Joseph Mercola.  He basically said that the "Danger Number 200" was created by a panel of ten doctors, eight of whom also worked for the cholesterol-lowering pharmaceutical companies.  Not surprised.  The total number, according to him, is meaningless.  He suggests:

     "Two ratios that are far better indicators of heart disease risk are:
  1. Your HDL/total cholesterol ratio: HDL percentage is a very potent heart disease risk factor. Just divide your HDL level by your total cholesterol. This percentage should ideally be above 24 percent. Below 10 percent, it's a significant indicator of risk for heart disease
  2. Your triglyceride/HDL ratios: This percentage should ideally be below 2"
When I calculate my own percentages, I am actually in the safe zone (Yes, I know that my blog font has now changed to the quoted article font.  I don't know how to fix this.  I'm sure it is easy to differentiate between the article and my blog.  My words do not sound scientific in any way, shape, or form. They're more of the pedestrian bullshit variety.)   I prefer to change my diet and lifestyle than become a slave to the billion dollar pharmaceutical companies, or as I like to call them, Satan.  I will save my disdain for greedy, evil, big businesses for my I Hate Greedy, Big Businesses (aka, Satan) Because They Are Evil blog.


  1. "(Yes, I know that my blog font has now changed to the quoted article font. I don't know how to fix this...."

    Hahaa.. my morning laugh. Thanks!

  2. Sounds like you were a hellion back in the day. I may have been too, but I can't really remember.

    I've had similar issues with cholesterol that I'd hoped would be solved with regular workouts, weight loss and a vegetable-heavy diet that's low in sugar, fat and calories. Three years later my levels were still too high, so my doctor made me take a generic form of Lipitor. I'm with you in my disdain for pharmaceutical companies, but after 6 months, my HDL dropped like a rock, LDL came up to mid-normal and triglycerides well below target. I'm just saying!