Oh my, so last night I slept from 11pm to 7:30am and I woke up feeling like a new women! I can't believe how much the early rising thing was conking me out. Have I given up yet?! I'm still working on things. Danielle had suggested quitting electronics for 1/2 hour before and reading a light book. This totally works for me. I am going to incorporate this into my nightly routine from here on out. Some interesting stuff has been happening the past few days. So a few days ago I emailed Whole30 to ask some clarifying questions about whether I'm a sham. I actually got a personal email back from Melissa (she is very sweet) and got to discuss several things back and forth with her. I've had some good clarity with her help.

I told Melissa about what I had been through, the good, the bad, what others thought, what I thought, etc. She said that she plans to use this as a teachable moment and is working on an article for Whole9/Whole30. She was very clear that they are not trying to foster an environment of exclusivity, but that they also have some strict devotees. She talked to me quite a bit, and asked me a really great question:

Would you say that you are a performance-driven athlete? Meaning that on the spectrum of having a health-focus (where your only goal is to make yourself healthier, even if it means performance suffers) and a performance focus (where you do things that may not be optimal for your health because they drive performance gains), you fall slightly or mostly into the latter category?

Understand that we believe there is no "right" goal or focus here, but that it's important for each person to know where he/she shakes out on the health vs. performance curve. Where would you say you self-identify?

Um, I think you all can guess that I self identify as a "right wing" (hahahha), meaning I do things that may or may not be optimal for health because they drive performance gains. I'm definitely not in the camp that will do something healthier if it means performance suffers. This was a really good question to ask me and it helped me to really iron down some things.

I always say "health first," it's something I really believe. But the truth is, what I mean is: when seeking to be your fastest self, think about health first. My health first comment doesn't actually mean let athletics suffer to be healthier (kinda crazy to actually type that...but it's how I feel). The truth of the matter is that competing in an Ironman is not a very healthy endeavor. If you do too many of them too quickly, you will mess yourself up. They are a performance goal. So when I dive down into it, I would say that I am seeking more health in order to have a performance advantage. And I truly believe that a healthier body is a faster body. But the "faster body" part is the goal.

FOR ME....

Let's be clear here....FOR ME....

We can argue (successfully) that my hobby is inherently an unhealthy endeavor and that I could be doing much healthier things with my time/money/body/etc. like walking, or yoga. But given that performance gains in triathlon are the primary goal, I do think seeking as much health as possible within that framework, helps decrease the number on the clock at the end of the day. This is not something everyone agrees with. Many people feel that you have to get to a bit of a generally unhealthy place, riding the line between too lean, or too overtrained in order to get the best out of yourself. So far I have found the opposite to be true.

Today Whole9, the company that does Whole30 endorsed a book written by Stupid Easy Paleo that just came out called "The Paleo Athlete." I emailed Melissa at Whole30 and told her this looked like something that might address some of my questions and she put me in touch immediately with Stephanie, the author. Stephanie asked me to read and review the book, so I will keep you all posted there. She did say that the book is not exactly written for the "super experienced athlete" but that I might still get some good stuff out of it. Either way, I'm excited.

Food today was great. I didn't take photos, I'll get back to that tomorrow. It was my last day with Kristi here and we were busy bees getting swims and runs in. She's headed back home (sad face) and this week I need to get ready for my first training camp of the year, which is going to be pretty epic.

Breakfast was sweet potato hash with eggs, lunch was sweet potato hash with chicken, and dinner was left over chili, chicken, sweet potato hash, and I added in a head (I ate an entire head) of broccoli with some mayo (homemade) mustard sauce on top of them. Nom Nom!

Video Blog today is thanks to Erin, and I discuss some of my favorite cook books while wearing a hilarious green hat that kinda looks like a cross between and alien, and Shrek. I aim to please people...