I definitely felt the worst at mile 2.14. I could have stuck with just the Dragon Roll and the orders of eel and squid Nigiri – I love the chewiness of squid because I think that when eating raw fish, it should feel like one is eating something raw – but I decided I need a Tachibana roll too. Plus the calamari and dumplings as appetizers.
At mile 2.62, the Tron soundtrack pumping in my ears turned noticeably slow, cumbersome to forward movement, which in itself is an ironic thought because I was on a treadmill.
At mile 2.75, I noticed that I had burned 444 calories so far. I intended to go 3.1 miles – the point one to make up for the tenth of a mile at the onset when I was walking slowly then stopped to remove the pebble from my shoe – so I thought why not make it an even 500 calories? I hit 500 calories at mile 3.30, so I thought why not make it 600 calories? I stretched it out to 4.1 miles and then let myself slow to a walk and an eventual stop at 4.25 miles. I don’t even care about the calories that I burn. They just offered targets for me to hit and break through as a measure of progress.
I ate healthy all day, well, except for the four post-lunch cookies. Cookies. F&*cking Cookies. Why did there have to be cookies? They ALWAYS have cookies and I KNOW they’re going to have cookies and I don’t want to have any cookies, but I can help myself but eat them. ‘
How did I eat four cookies? Innocently. Purposely. Strategically.
It starts, of course, with a single cookie. Just one cookie. Only one. I usually go for the oatmeal raisin because if it’s soft and fresh and chewy, it’s delightful. Unless they have macadamia nut with white chocolate. If they do, then I go for that one first, and then I am compelled to at least TRY the oatmeal raisin. And after I’ve had an oatmeal raisin cookie, then I might as well have a chocolate chip cookie, you know, to sample them all. And whichever one I like the most, well, it just seems like a shame to leave whichever one I like the most just sitting on the tray when I could easily reach for another. There you have it – that’s how I ate four cookies. Even a double espresso won’t be my salvo after this gorging escapade.
Then it’s 3:00 and we’re still an hour from the start of our last meeting, which I grind through by feigning intellectual curiosity then inserting myself into the conversation at the risk of making an outrageously stupid statement (which I may have done), because the risk of making an outrageously stupid statement is less risky than the risk of falling asleep. The moment the meeting adjourns, I catch a jolt from exiting the meeting room and walking outside into the fresh winter air. I don’t even care about the smell of cold oil and exhaust settled in the parking garage.
When we sit for dinner, I catch my second wind knowing that, while I’m about to eat a fine dinner, most importantly it’s early on a Tuesday night in a DC suburb and the restaurant is mostly empty. I’m expecting expedient service, especially at a Japanese restaurant, and that makes me happy. The cookies and caffeine are long gone. My autonomic nervous systems detects a hollow hunger. And so I gorge again – on the sushi rolls and a large Sapporo. Not even a small Sapporo. A large Sapporo. I even consider a second large Sapporo even though I know I won’t order one. I leave dinner feeling delighted that I’ll be returning to my hotel at an early hour.
And it is back in my hotel room that my deliberate self impels me to change into my workout clothes. I’m bloated and puffy while I stretch on the floor, and I find myself dialing up the treadmill before my somatic system restrains me from the sloshing that is about to take place.
Why did I do this? It could have been the all day meetings. Talking about technology, data, mortgages, workflow, systems, policies, platforms, APIs tire to the mind and soul. Or it could have been my thinking about my schedule over the next two days, with certainly no time for a run and barely enough time for a brief CrossFit workout. Or I’m just wired to be wired. I’m glad I did, because now I know I’ll sleep much better, and tomorrow there will be cookies.