You would think that our brains would have some way of telling us not to eat stuff that could kill us, yet sometimes that can be the most appealing food of all.
Prior to teaching middle school, I spent several years teaching little kids. My very first year teaching, I had a student who LOVED peaches. Unfortunately, he was allergic to peaches – anaphylaxis, stop breathing, and die – allergic to peaches. Since it was the first year my kids were in a public school, all 8 of us teachers went to the cafeteria to help our 80+ students through the lunch line. Our students had to learn to make choices like “broccoli or corn,” “applesauce or peaches,” and “white milk, chocolate, or strawberry” while balancing a tray of food. They had to learn their “lunch number” and how to enter it into the keypad at the register. We helped them sit with an appropriate amount of space for their elbows and those of their neighbors, and we taught them to open all of their food containers. Getting through lunch was quite a production (and a major accomplishment) for my little ones!
Of course, we always reminded students of their allergies, but when asked, “applesauce or peaches?” my little peach-lover couldn’t resist. He always said, “PEACHES!” – usually while bouncing up and down with excitement. For a while, the excitement and bouncing would alert us, and we’d stand between him and his favorite fruit – so he learned to quietly whisper, “I’d like some peaches, please.” While his eyes grew large with anxious anticipation. Many times we stopped him at the register and made him exchanges his peaches for a different fruit, so he started snatching that first scrumptious bite with one hand while choosing his milk with the other. All told, we had to hit him with an EpiPen 3 times that year. Eventually, we pinned a sign to his shirt that said, “I love peaches, but am SEVERELY ALLERGIC! Please, NO PEACHES!!” I must say the lunch workers themselves became much more aware of him after the 2nd and 3rd time lunch service was interrupted by the rescue squad.
I must confess to having a certain admiration and understanding of this kid. Even though I weighed somewhere around 140 at the time, I’ve always had a deep love and passion for food. Those feelings have never been tempered by concerns for my health or digestive happiness, and while I like to think I’m gaining some wisdom with age, this weekend’s diary indulgence proves that when offered ice cream and cheese, I will still bounce up and down while accepting my treat, sneak more bites than I should have, and smile about it while suffering the digestive consequences.
Unfortunately, it blew my run, today. That might just be the line for me.
I was very excited to run workout #8 from my treadmill book, and I was completely committed to seeing it all the way through. It was a doable workout! But it didn’t get done. I did 8/9 of it. Yep, I was that close to finishing. I was shaking and off kilter. I couldn’t get my breathing under control, and my gut was bubbling like water boiling over on the stove. My arms were so wobbly, I couldn’t even hold the pen to check off my intervals by the 3rd segment of the workout. I know I gave it 100% of what I had to give today, but I also know that I only had about 60% of my usual effort available, because of my food choices this weekend. I want to say I’ll never eat cheese or ice cream again, but every time one of us punched that EpiPen into that little boy, he cried and swore he’d never choose peaches again. I suspect this won’t be the last of my dairy disasters, but I do think I’ll consider the consequences a bit more carefully in the future. Maybe someday I’ll even develop the wisdom to stop eating food my digestive system can’t handle? After all, I’ve learned to keep my food healthy-ish and properly portioned; I’ve learned to run 4 miles without dying; I can learn all sorts of new stuff!
The 3rd segment was suppose to have 3 more intervals at 3.8 mph, 4.8 mph, and 5.8 mph. In truth Segment #2 was supposed to be the same speed as Segment #1 and the 3.4, 4.4, & 5.4 intervals in Segment #3 were actually supposed to be 3.5, 4.5 & 5.5, but I knew I was in trouble and was trying to salvage the workout.