I don’t count calories. I can’t be bothered. But I do get weighed every week at my training session. And I was a little surprised to have gained 3 lbs in a week. My weight does fluctuate according to my menstrual cycle, and I can tell because a) my ring gets harder to put on my finger and b) I feel like an elephant. But this wasn’t related to that. This, I realised, was alcohol. I broke my abstinence ban to celebrate the 50th birthday of a good friend. I broke it spectacularly with nearly 12 hours of drinking. I was drinking Prosecco and Champagne mostly. 70 calories a glass. Lots of glasses. And it went straight to my waist and weight.

So I am back to the abstinence. It makes me feel better. I sleep better. I weigh better.

As for food, Jenny will give me a block diet plan. That’s “diet” as in “the kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats” not “a special course of food to which one restricts oneself, either to lose weight or for medical reasons.” I don’t diet. I follow Michael Pollan’s advice:

Eat food.
Not too much.
Mostly plants.

One block for each food group: protein, carbohydrates, vegetables. Then she will advise me what each meal should consist of, and beyond that it’s mix and match and up to me. I love food. I will not stop having treats. I would never banish cake. But I need to think about fuelling, because I need to haul my body around 26.1 miles, and at the moment that’s not something I think I can do. I have running mates who think I’m a geek and over-obsessed. They don’t run with watches. They don’t sign up for races until the last minute. They would laugh at the sight of a training plan. But they could also probably run a marathon from one day to the next. They are younger, and fitter, and though they eat what they like and it’s often crap, they have more reserves. Lucky, lucky them. For now.


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