I’m my own worst enemy.
Everything was going fine. I didn’t do my run like I planned on Wednesday evening, but it was OK. I was eating my porridge in the mornings, I was drinking lots and lots of water, and these two steps alone were making me feel so much better, in mind and in body.
On Thursday, things were going well. I went for lunch with a friend. I had a whole pizza, but that was fine. She had one too. She left college at about three, meaning I was alone in the office. Since then, I have carried out a sustained conflict with my body.
As soon as I was alone, I had a huge slice of chocolate biscuit cake and a can of Diet Coke. Then I settled down to study. Except I couldn’t. I put in my earphones and started watching TV on my computer, swerving the screen away from public view any time a lecturer came close.
I watched TV for about four hours in the office. Then I went out for dinner. I planned to have something to eat and go home and have my run. I really wanted to show myself I could do 7K before I did my 8K this Tuesday. I went to Pizza Hut. I think I knew I was sabotaging myself and ensuring I didn’t get my run done. I sat in one of their booths, where I barely fit, and ordered cheese and bacon potato skins to start, followed by a large double pepperoni pizza on a thick base with a stuffed crust. I ate quickly.
I left Pizza Hut and went into full-on sabotage mode. I went next door, to a “custom-made” burger restaurant. I ordered a large beef burger, with brie, bacon, fried onions and mayonnaise. I also got a huge plate of chips with garlic mayonnaise and melted cheese. And a Coke.
I’m not sure if I was just sabotaging my run. It was the night of the Ireland/Spain match in the European Championships. I have got used to sport in the last few years, and even tried some and liked them, but I still have a visceral, nonsensical reaction of hatred against huge national occasions like this, where I feel more of a freak than usual for my lack of interest. As a nine-year-old, I remember crying when Ireland got knocked out of the World Cup by Italy. Now, I get upset when we get into these competitions, and I take a perverse pleasure in not watching the games. That evening, Facebook and Twitter assaulted me with reactions to the match and to our loss and I really wanted to reach into the internet and shout at everyone. I’m not sure why.
I took a taxi home, feeling too full and too sick to stand at a bus stop.
I climbed straight into bed, turned on my laptop and watched more TV online. I like TV. I follow quite a few series online. And yet, for the past few months, the only shows I really kept up-to-date with were Glee and the Apprentice. For all the other series I follow, the last episode I watched was in February.
Since February, I got a life. I was working more. I was spending more time in college. I got to know the boys properly. I started putting myself out there and going on dates. Having a life was great.
But in the last week and a half, I have caught up on all the episodes since February of New Girl, 30 Rock, Modern Family, How I Met Your Mother, Cougar Town, Grey’s Anatomy and Parenthood. And I’m well on my way with House and Desperate Housewives. And most of this TV orgy was in the last few days. I’ve been watching episode after episode.
On Friday, I woke up at 8:00, with a horrendous food hangover. From 8:00 to 12:00, I stayed in bed, watching more TV, running back and forth to the loo.
At about midday, I felt OK again. I started trying to convince myself to go for my run. I wrestled with my conscience. I tried to persuade myself by reading old blogposts, by calling myself names. I cried. It was to no avail. At 2:00, I got up from bed and showered. I climbed in my car. I went to Esso in Rathmines and bought a chicken fillet baguette, with mayonnaise and cheese please and a packet of chocolate biscuits and a bottle of Diet Coke. I parked my car on a residential road and ate. Then I drove to Subway on Clanbrassil Street. I ordered a footlong “Hearty Italian” sub, with Meatball Marinara, with cheese and toasted (extra cheese for sixty cent? Yes please, half American cheese, half pepper cheese) with peppers and onions and southwest sauce and mayonnaise and another bottle of Diet Coke. Once again, I felt sick with food.
I managed to get into college for about 5:30. I was meeting a friend for dinner at 6:30. I was exploding with bread and mayonnaise. I ordered a vegetarian pasta and had a beer. Things were settling in my innards. I would be alright.
The next few hours were the highlight of the last few days. We went to see a musical. As I’ve said here before, musical theatre is nature’s antidepressant. I was whooshed away to a world of jazz hands, love, song and joy. It was wonderful. We had a pint afterwards. I was feeling good.
The minute I was alone, I went to Burger King. I had a supersize XL Bacon Double Cheeseburger meal with a Diet Coke. And I realise that’s a meal with “Supersize” “XL” and “Double” in the title. I went home and watched more telly.
I didn’t sleep well. I woke up with indigestion and once again, this time with less conviction, tried to convince myself to go for a run. Instead, I stayed in bed watching TV until I recovered. Then I got up, got into my car and went and got a chicken fillet baguette with mayonnaise and cheese please and a jumbo sausage roll and one of those enormous bags (“for sharing”) of Cadbury’s Giant Buttons and two bottles of Diet Coke. I ate and I drove. I didn’t pay attention to where I was going. I ended up somewhere in the Dublin mountains.
I felt sick from the food and went to bed in the afternoon. I slept a lot of my bleurgh off.
I got up at about 7:00pm. I bought and ate two bags of Monster Munch and a bottle of water. Then I bought an eight-pack of cheap Polish beer and went to visit my friend.
I drank more or less non-stop from 9:30 to 3:30. As well as beer, I had half a bottle of red wine. It went down so easily that I remember thinking it was just like juice. After leaving my friend’s house, I staggered to O’Connell Street, where Eddie Rockets is open 24-hours at the weekends. I had a bacon and cheeseburger and chips with cheese and garlic and a Diet Coke.
I got another taxi home. I woke up after three hours sleep. All I could taste was garlic mayonnaise. All I could smell was beer. The world was ending.
I’ve spent the day napping. And rehydrating. Having a banana. I feel like me again.
I’ve finished fighting myself for the moment. I’ve finished trying to hide in consumption. I won’t get a practice run in before Tuesday. The longest distance I’ve done so far is 6K. And on Tuesday I’m doing eight. I don’t know why I’m so afraid. And I don’t know why I went on such a binge. But I’m back in the driving seat now.
Tuesday’s going to be the start of the best summer of my life. Wish me luck!