Is it just me or does anyone else feel like they are constantly being asked to label themselves? You have to fit neatly into some box with a label on it: liberal, conservative, wife, sister, Christian, student, foodie, athlete, etc. It’s why writing an introductory blog post was so difficult for me. How can I tell you everything you need to know about me in just a few words? And besides, you probably bring your own connotations to terms.
I have struggled with the label “runner”. I run, yes, but I don’t often feel like a “real” runner. I don’t have the body shape of a “real” runner. Running is not easy for me, even at a pace that “real” runners would consider a crawl. But one of my favorite Bart Yasso quotes is:
“I often hear someone say ‘I'm not a real runner’. We are all runners, some just run faster than others. I never met a fake runner."
I have the same problem with telling people about what I eat. I dabbled with not eating meat in high school but didn’t have the knowledge or means to eat a well-balanced diet so I went back to eating meat. Then a few years ago, I began giving up meat during Lent. While my husband was initially dismayed, we both learned that making tasty and filling meals without meat was definitely possible. I also noticed that I felt better when I didn’t eat meat. So last October, I started to reduce my meat consumption with an eye towards giving up meat at the beginning of the new year.
I still eat fish and seafood, so I’m not really vegetarian so much as pescetarian. I’m also not terribly picky about broths for soups in restaurants. And occasionally, I’ll eat meat if it’s local and ethically raised. I also find it difficult to refuse someone’s hospitality if they make me a meal with meat in it. I’ll pick around it as much as possible, but for me, the bigger sin would be to waste a perfectly good meal when other people go hungry than to let a morsel of meat pass my lips.
So when people ask, I usually just tell them that I am not eating meat right now. For whatever reason, it’s easier for me to say that than to label myself as a lacto-ovo vegetarian who occasionally eats fish. I don’t prepare any meat in my own house, but I don’t always have control over what food I have access to.
I am planning on doing a few posts on how to train for an endurance event without eating meat, but if you don’t want to wait on me, you can check out No Meat Athlete for an excellent resource. You can also visit my food blog, Cook Pray Love, for some ideas of the foods that I make and eat.
Do you follow a certain type of diet? Do you consider yourself a runner?