Recapping the No-Bonk Week

Christmas has come and gone, and so has the no-bonk week. I would like to thank all of you who participated with me (there were many of you who did so in secret, right? ha ha) and let you know how it went. It was a valuable experiment and I learned a few things. Here is a quick recap and some thoughts:

  1. Every day (except for Christmas Day, when I slept in until 7:30), I was out the door by 6:10am, staying outside for at least half an hour, running and/or doing other exercises at a nearby park (you might not have known that playground equipment can take the place of a Universal gym). My first thought at 5:30am on the first morning was “What was I thinking? Why didn’t I say 8 or 9 instead?” The days were cold, dark and generally not very welcoming. Fortunately, it only rained on the first day (that rain was as invigorating as sticking your wet finger in a light socket, by the way). The rest of the days were just cold, and each time I ran past the Mount Scott Community Center, I would enviously look over at the people running on treadmills inside the warm, dry building.
  2. My stated goal of the project—to survive the alumni game—was accomplished. The alumni team (with 19 players) won the game by seven points without anyone getting injured (soreness doesn’t count), although we would have won by more had your writer not missed some easy lay-ups and a couple free throws. I am over that now (sort of). Let’s just say it’s a good thing we won, or I would have had to spend all of 2011 figuring out how to prepare for next year’s game.
  3. The early-morning exercise felt good—most days. I don’t know about you, but I think my body would enjoy exercising more at a different hour of the day. At any rate, having the discipline to get up early helped me feel better for the rest of the day, even though I did need a 20 minute nap one morning to get me through it.
  4. It’s a lot harder to enjoy sleeping when you know you have to get up to go running. At least that’s the way it seemed for the first few nights, when I kept waking up and checking the time.
  5. One day I “bonked” because I left the house without eating. I should have followed my own no-bonk plan, but I was in a hurry to get going and didn’t take the time to eat. Mistake. The next day I had a Power Bar before going out, and felt a lot better during the whole workout. Lesson learned.
  6. The best thing I got from the week was learning how effective public accountability is, at least for me. Every single day it would have been easy to ignore the alarm and go back to sleep, but I knew that I would eventually have to write this post and wanted to be able to tell you the truth. I think we could all benefit by writing out our plans and having the public (the whole world, if you think about how far the internet reaches) hold us accountable.

Overall, I would say that the no-bonk week was a success, and I plan to apply some of the things I learned to my life going forward. I will probably do something similar again in the future, and when I do, you will definitely be invited to join me. We can avoid bonking together.