Contributed By Samantha Zeigler, Author of Running & Cupcakes
Quite a while ago (a little over a year now…) I declared that I was (mostly) quitting eating red meat and pork. Food documentaries and health concerns had me convinced that I just didn’t need it. And I made it an entire year. I didn’t avoid red meat or pork completely (the only pork I really eat is ham and bacon – I don’t like pork chops, ick). Once in a great while I just want a steak, or a burger, or bacon, so I eat it. But I didn’t plan it into my weekly meal plans.
Then a couple of weeks ago I noticed I was getting a lot of dizzy spells. I thought it was blood pressure – so I checked, it wasn’t that. I thought it was dehydration, so I started really forcing myself to be more diligent about my water consumption – it wasn’t that either. I mentioned it to a coworker and she said it could be an iron deficiency. So last week I started to make sure I take my multivitamin every day, I’ve been making smoothies with spinach, and I ate red meat once (after mentioning that I needed it, the bf made me tacos for dinner in an effort to get me to eat the red meat, and it worked, I do love tacos.) While grocery shopping the other day I saw a package of 6 pre-made beef sliders in the meat department at Trader Joes. I only thought about it for a minute or two before picking them up.
It turns out that large amounts of exercise can in fact lower your iron levels – not something a woman really wants to worry about. Given that I’ve been working out a lot harder than my body is used to, I am willing to bet that lots of workouts combined with iron deficiency were the cause of my dizzy spells, because they’ve subsided.
That had me a tad bit scared so I’m glad I got it figured out pretty quickly!
Other awesome things lately? I’m RUNNING AGAIN! I took 23 whole days off of running, and when I came back to it, this is what happened:
I honestly thought I was crawling – the path I run on was snowy and icy in spots so I was being very cautious of my footing. I kept my Garmin under the sleeve of my coat the entire time so I had no idea how quickly I was moving until I was done – boy was I shocked.
Compared to a 5 mile run that the bf and I did back on December 22nd – 8:44 average pace which felt hard toward the end. Well the bf did tell me that all this kettlebell stuff was going to make me a stronger runner, but I had no idea it would happen that quickly.
Now I’m going to try to run at least 3 times per week in order to get ready for Reach the Beach in May – but I’m also still going to keep up my kettlebell workouts as well.
I’m looking forward to seeing how much faster and I stronger I continue to get!
Have you ever taken a hiatus from running to focus on strength and come back and surprised yourself like I did?