Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

This week called for a step back in long run mileage. Most marathon training programs decrease in mileage every 2 or 3 weeks to let your legs recover. So it will be like 10 miles, 12 miles then down to 8 miles.

I planned on 14 today and I’ll go back up to 18 next week. Before my run I fueled by with the usual – SB&J toast.IMG 6338 600x800 thumb Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

Today I took a long Gatorade and my Spibelt to hold my phone and emergency money. You know, because getting a Panera bagel is an emergency sometimes wlEmoticon winkingsmile17 Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging QuestionIMG 6342 600x800 thumb Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

I packed some Poweraid chews in my fuel pocket. These are so hard to eat though wlEmoticon sadsmile12 Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question Too chewy, take forever to get down. I keep trying to eat chews because I have a ton of them, but they just don’t work for me.IMG 6344 800x600 thumb Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

I picked a route that was out a ways but not back all the way so I called Ben to come get me when I was done. (We planned this so he knew I would be calling.)IMG 6346 800x600 thumb Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging QuestionI know this is a little weird, but I like running a certain distance away from home and having him come get me. Out and backs always make me sad to turn around because I know I’m only half way home.IMG 6350 800x600 thumb1 Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

14 miles in 2:05:47 average pace 8:59

I felt just okay today. My legs are tired and I really needed this step back week for my psyche. Marathon training is very psychological and my heart and head wanted a break too.IMG 6352 800x600 thumb Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

I came home and polished off the watermelon I bought on Wednesday. Someone asked how I differentiate eating an entire watermelon in 3 days from binging? This is a great question!IMG 6353 800x600 thumb Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

First off, I kinda think if you have to ask you aren’t a binge eater. And I mean that in a nice way wlEmoticon smile32 Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

Binging is something I do without really tasting or enjoying the food. I’m not “just overeating because it tastes good”. I binge because I’m tired, overly hungry, stressed or lonely. It’s a comfort thing. I’m not enjoying the food. It’s also something I’ve done since high school to deal with stuff.image thumb24 Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

I eat and eat and eat watermelon because I love it. Also it’s similar to Christmas cookies or another special/holiday food for other people because I think of watermelon as only available for a limited time (even if that limited time is really 4 months long!). It is one of my favorite foods and I keep eating it until my belly is bloated.

Being bloated is uncomfortable and crappy. But, the difference is – after a binge I feel like shit physically and psychologically.

Evelyn Tribole (RD and one of the authors of Intuitive Eating) told me overeating is common and doesn’t mean you have food issues. Most people eat too much of their favorite food every now and then. Most people eat too much during special events surrounded by food – this doesn’t equal a binge.

Hope that explains it wlEmoticon smile32 Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

I didn’t want breakfast after my run so I made a super early lunch. IMG 6354 800x600 thumb Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

Plans for the day include visiting my fam and Yogurtland wlEmoticon smile32 Step Back in Marathon Training and Binging Question

Anyone want to chime in on binging versus overeating a favorite food?

Comments

  1. says

    I like being picked up or otherwise commuting home after a run for the same reasons as you do as well as I don’t want to run the exact same course twice. Another option is to run a square/rectangle if its possible put I rarely do it.

    I have binge eating issues as well but right now (like literally as I type) I am overeating cherries. And I agree, its a seasonal thing with them too!

  2. says

    I agree that the real difference between overeating and bingeing is the purpose and how it feels during and afterward. When we eat something (even too much of something) with purpose and awareness, it leads to enjoyment and pleasure. When we eat to avoid, stuff, distract, punish, or cope, it often leads to guilt and feeling worse.

    An additional thought though…when we way overeat something we love, we cross a fine line into discomfort or even misery. With awareness of that regret (NOT the same thing as guilt), we can choose to eat less of it next time so we feel good during and after!

    Just my two cents. Thanks for your post!

      • Renee Wagner says

        How ironic! I just started Dr May’s book last weekend – LOVE it so far. It’s like she is describing me when she’s providing case studies.

        • says

          I haven’t read or heard of that book…is it another Intuitive Eating book??

          Monica – I really, really struggle with binging…daily :( I hate myself for it. I’ve read books, etc. I know it’s all emotional and I continue to do it anyways…it’s tough. The worst is feeling that I’ve literally “damaged” myself from the crap I put in me. Blech.

          Have you actually met Evelyn Tribole?!

  3. Kelli says

    I overeat whenI have PMS and I need something immediatly! Binging at least for me is the out of control feeling like I have to eat the whole box kind of thinking

  4. says

    I seem to think of binging as the process of losing yourself in food… or when you’ve eaten so much that you become numb to whatever food you put in your mouth. You become more like a machine.. there’s zero control. Usually you eat foods that require absolutely zero prep work– pre packaged junk foods and the like.

  5. says

    I think you hit the nail on the head! Eating watermelon – or some other food – day after day/with every meal until it’s gone is definitely not something I’d consider a binge. In my mind, binging is mindlessly eating until you “snap out of it” or run out of whatever you were eating & THEN realize what you’ve been up to. Small time period, lots of food, no control.

    Now, if you were eating a whole watermelon in ONE sitting? Safe to call that one a binge. (But probably also impossible!)

    • says

      I without a doubt can eat a whole watermelon in one sitting. I’ve eaten half in one go – and still had room for more. I think I have an extra watermelon stomach.

  6. Allison says

    When you overeat, you really are enjoying the food, although perhaps too much. Binging isn’t about the food and it isn’t enjoyable. I can binge on any kind of food, even food I don’t like if that is all there is and I keep eating it even after I feel gross.

  7. Jules says

    To me, overeating is mindful, and binging is mindless. So if I overeat, I’m making a conscious choice, beause ohmygoshthistastessogood, versus eating to numb or comfort. If I binge, I actually don’t care about taste, and if I overeat, taste has a whole lot to do with it. Mood is irrelevant when it comes to overeating, but paramount to binging. For me, I feel guitly/bad/gross if I binge, but don’t feel that way if I overeat. Also, I’ll binge in private, but overeat while out to dinner with fam or friends.

  8. says

    I totally agree with your opinion of the difference between overeating and binging. Binging is very psychological and emotional. People think that the good tastes good when they are binging sometimes, but they are eating for other reasons. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the book Intuitive Eating and I recommend it to so many of my clients at the gym! It’s a great read about a healthy way to view food and go back to the basics of how to eat to live instead of live to eat!

  9. says

    Good explanation.

    I went “off” processed sugar four days ago (well, nothing higher than 4 g/serving + fruits) and it’s amazing how often I go the fridge or cupboard FOR NO REASON other than I’m bored or stressed. I’m going to slowly ease up a bit so that I can have a damn cookie once in awhile, but it’s a good lesson.

  10. Pam says

    Great job on your run and great teamwork!! :) You did exactly what my husb and I did this morning. I live around a lot of rolling hills. So the plan was to complete my long run on a flat path (I didn’t want to tackle hills today!). My hubby picked me up at our local park when I was done! Hubby points!!

    I’m in love with the “hello kitty” theme at yogurtland. I’m collecting spoons!! I have 5 already!! :)

  11. says

    I’m also in the middle of marathon training (today was a step back run for me, too), and this summer I’ve been eating fruit like crazy–half a cantaloupe in one sitting, bags of grapes, etc. I don’t really feel like I’m binging though; I don’t feel anything like I used to feel when I would sit down with a whole package of Chips Ahoy or Girl Scout Cookies. My body is craving the water and the carbs, and I’m just giving it what it wants. My bank account, on the other hand, is not so happy… fresh fruit is expensive!

  12. says

    this post was especially timely … i’m training for my first marathon right now and WOW is marathon training turning out to be all mental for me. i’m on week 8 or 9 of 18 and i’m really struggling here :( thank you for writing about it!!

    and i think you made a good definition/distinction between overeating and binging. binging is such a psychological shitshow for me in which i feel terrible for days :( it’s not even the physical aftermath for me, it’s the feeling of deep failure :(

    yeah, this post hit the nail on the head several times here today. thank you!

  13. says

    Hi! I’ve been following your blog for awhile and I always love reading what you have to say! In fact I’ve been reading you so much lately that I’ve had major watermelon cravings. Its the perfect thing in this heat! As for bingeing vs overeating…I totally get what you are saying. I definitely overeat some of my favorite foods (broccoli being the main culprit), but I wouldn’t necessarily consider it bingeing. I agree with what you said about bingeing being something you do without enjoying the food and its something that can have a lot of emotional /psychological connections. Good luck with you marathon training! I too am in the middle of training for one, my first this fall!

  14. Sarah says

    I’m gonna go ahead and put it out there that I really don’t think eating a whole watermelon in 3 days is bingeing at all or even overeating. Firstly, watermelon is a less calorie dense food and therefore eating more of it is natural. If you had eaten a watermelon sized portion of chocolate that would have been slightly more disconcerting. Secondly, I think about it this way: I have fruit with b-fast, lunch, my snack, and sometimes as a second snack…with all that fruit eating a watermelon definitely would have been gone in 3 days and I think that’s healthy not weird. Just my thoughts.

  15. says

    I don’t think people binge on foods they love, because if you LOVE something, you treasure it, you take care of it, you eat it mindfully. A lot of people haven’t legalized the foods that they binge on. It’s not love. It’s some other dysfunction. Love and Binge-ing are not in the same equation.

  16. says

    Interesting question. It got me thinking..can you binge on something that is healthy? To me bingeing always had a negative connotation as in the food you are eating isn’t good for you. I’m not sure, I’ve never dealt with bingeing myself just got me thinking..

  17. Lorin says

    I haven’t binged much, I overeat frequently (3 times a week?) But I’ve binged once and how I remember it is that you have absolutely no control, your hand keeps giong to your mouth feeding it even if your stomach and brain keeps saying no. It gives you this adreneline rush almost, at least that’s what I felt and you get this high. Of course after that you feel like crap and you start feeling physically all the food you just ate in the past 10 minutes sit on you. I remember I kept telling myself to stop and I literally had to close the drawer that had the food and walk away for a bit to come down from that food high. Overeating is just eating past a point but not so much that you have no control whatsoever.

  18. says

    agreed. i associate binging more with sitting there and mindlessly stuffing your face because you want the food to somehow make you feel better. it’s way more about the emotional. but eating a ton of something can just be because you’re enjoying the taste of the food. it’s physical vs emotional.

  19. says

    Overeating is something you will do in front of other (ie eating a big dinner and dessert at your favorite restaurant) for pleasure and the experience. Binge eating is something you do alone out of guilt, anxiety, etc and you would never want someone to know or see you doing.

    Just my two cents! Thanks for the blog, as always!

  20. says

    Hey! I am actually able to read and comment on your blog. *Doing a little dance* I will try not to type too quickly and scare it away.

    Huh, with reading this post and the comments, I don’t think I’ve ever actually binged, even when I thought I had. I have definitely overeaten, but always very slowly and fully enjoying every single bite. Okay, so my stomach hurting and feeling like a stuffed cabbage afterwards was never fun, but I still enjoyed every second of the actual eating.

  21. says

    My favorite run is a long loop. It’s mentally hard for me to see the same sights when I’m out on a long run so I don’t like out-and-back runs (although sometimes they are necessary.) If I had someone to come pick me up, I would run, and run, and run. Who knows how far I’d go. I’d love to try it sometime.

    I love watermelon too, but perhaps not as much as you do. I think my dog might match you though. She cries when I’m cutting one up. I’ve found her in the kitchen sitting near the counter where the watermelon is sitting… whimpering.

  22. alice says

    Being that I’m the one who had asked you that question, I just had to take a second to comment. I liked your answer a lot and it makes total sense the way you differentiate the two. However, I had to laugh a little when you said that if I asked I must not be a binge eater. I spent many years as a raging bulimic so I totally get the binge mentality. It’s just that, for me now, I find that I tend to let myself “lose control” with fruit because it’s a bit safer and I wondered if it was the same for you. I don’t like that I do that because I feel like it’s still not normal eating but hey, I guess no one’s perfect also.

    • says

      Hi Alice, I think someone can binge on any food – from carrots to chocolate cake, it’s all about that “losing control” feeling you mentioned. For me personally I don’t feel like it’s binge-y with watermelon. But I’ve done worse with less.

      Hope this post was helpful :)

  23. says

    Also, I have never thought of watermelon as a binging food. I mean cake, chocolate, hamburgers, cheese, ice cream, all the things that are comforting but not watermelon! I mean I have never binged or known anyone to binge on carrots but there are people who go through a bag a carrots a day! I think it’s relative!

  24. says

    I wouldn’t ever view eating a whole watermelon as bingeing, the way I see it I have ‘free’ foods that I can eat as much as I want of like vegetables, fruit etc etc. When I eat a lot of watermelon or too much sweet potato etc (which I regularly do! :)) I generally feel happy as I think of all the nutrients my body has just received. I might feel overly full but I definitely don’t don’t get any of the negative feelings that bingeing on ‘junk’ gives me.

  25. Emily says

    I love your honesty when it comes to overeating vs. binging. I have a serious addiction to crunchy carbs; I have multiple times in my life eaten a whole (big) box of cereal in one day. OR, I make popcorn (on the stove -yea whirlypop) and eat bowls and bowls of it. YIKES! I have obviously told people, the next day, how crappy I feel from my day of binging and their response is, “It’s not like it was burgers and fries,” or “Just stop.” Obviously, these people just don’t understand! I have learned that is it very difficult for me to control myself when I have those trigger foods in the house. I do not regularly buy binge-worthy cereal, and I ask my fiance to help me stick to one bowl of popcorn, or split it with me. If I feel a binge coming on, I pick up my phone and call a friend, or turn on music and clean my closet… anything to break that cycle. The accomplishment of NOT binging feels SO good, and it also doesn’t make you feel like total crap the next day!

  26. says

    Binging on watermelon can’t be as bad as binging on Oreo cookies right? I love watermelon and feel when I eat it I am boosting my water intake…even though sometime I have to go to bed with a belly ache due to the watermelon…I ate a half of a HUGE watermelon on Satruday after swimming….with temps in the 100s here the past few days..I have been SUPER thirsty:)~

  27. says

    I want to jump back in here and say that bingeing isn’t really about the food. In our culture, we label foods as “good” or “bad” and rationalize and justify why one is ok and another isn’t. In fact, this practice actually contributes to overeating, bingeing, and yoyo dieting.

    Back in my yo-yo dieting days, my primary triggers for overeating/bingeing were mostly: Stress/overwhelm; boredom; and restriction/deprivation/guilt (as a result of breaking some perceived rule about what was ok and what was not).

    Interestingly, books mentioned above like Intuitive Eating and mine, Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat, (and others), help people with both overeating and binge eating by returning to a more balanced, rational, non-restrictive approach. The foundation of all of these books is that restrictive rules lead to feelings of deprivation, cravings, overeating, and guilt. That is what I call the eat-repent-repeat cycle.

    (For people who feel they might have binge eating disorder or want more information, see http://www.bedaonline.com/.)

  28. says

    I want to jump back in here and say that bingeing isn’t really about the food. In our culture, we label foods as “good” or “bad” and rationalize and justify why one is ok and another isn’t. In fact, this practice actually contributes to overeating, bingeing, and yoyo dieting.

    Back in my yo-yo dieting days, my primary triggers for overeating/bingeing were mostly: Stress/overwhelm; boredom; and restriction/deprivation/guilt (as a result of breaking some perceived rule about what was ok and what was not).

    Interestingly, books mentioned above like Intuitive Eating and mine, Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat, (and others), help people with both overeating and binge eating by returning to a more balanced, rational, non-restrictive approach. The foundation of all of these books is that restrictive rules lead to feelings of deprivation, cravings, overeating, and guilt. That is what I call the eat-repent-repeat cycle.

    (Also, for people who feel they might have binge eating disorder or want more information, see http://www.bedaonline.com/.)

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