New Years…. Resolutions and Reminiscences

New Years Eve 2012. A good time for reflection and resolve. I’m not making New Years Resolutions – I never keep them. That’s one of the reasons I’m glad I’ve started on this journey already. It’s not a New Years resolution if I started it in December is it?

In one of the Facebook groups, members were asked what are you most proud of in 2012. So many people had inspiring stories of the fabulous things they have achieved as a result of the 12wbt. It got me thinking and I really struggled. The biggest thing to happen to me this year was a 4 month trip of a lifetime around South America and Antarctica. Am I “proud” of the travelling I did this year… kind of I guess. I’m proud that I saved up and paid for it in advance so I didn’t come home to massive cc debt but that’s about it. Don’t get me wrong I enjoyed it IMMENSELY (best trip of my life and to anyone who gets the chance to travel to Antarctica I say grab it with both hands and do it! It’s an amazing place) but I’m not proud of anything I did while I was away. I had to decline an invite to march in the Sambadrome parade at Carnavale because I was too fat for the costume. I didn’t sign up for kayaking in Antarctica because it was supposed to be for experienced kayakers and I was too chicken/embarrassed/lazy/unfit to gain experience before I left. I didn’t do the Inca trail to Macchu Picchu because I was too fat/lazy/unfit/worried about embarrassing myself/worried about being too much slower than everyone else IF I could even complete it. Whilst I still saw the amazing sites of Macchu Picchu and Antarctica (and suffered from altitude sickness so may not have been able to do the hike anyway), I do regret that these were decisions I made before the trip as a direct result of the extra 30+ kilos I’m carrying. I didn’t make the decisions due to cost or time or illness or anything else outside my control. I made them because I have allowed myself to become so unhealthy (both mentally and physically) that I couldn’t do them. My weight has been stopping me from enjoying life to the fullest for too long.

There is something I am proud of though. I’m proud that I finally got up the courage to join the 12wbt instead of making excuses until I miss the cut off date as I’ve done in the past. For that I have to thank Casey who won Round 3. Her before and after photos, as well as her positive attitude and resilience with dealing with the morons who inevitably spout there negativity on public photos really inspired me.

I’m proud that I have started making changes in my life already. I’ve done more exercise in the last couple of weeks than I have done in the last year! I’ve started thinking about what I put into my body. Yes I still go over the 1200 calorie limit but that’s not every day. Most days I’m managing to stay between 1100 and 1300. I don’t worry too much about the days I go over. After all, I’m taking things slowly. Easing myself into it. I’ve gone at it like a bull at a gate in the past and whilst its full steam ahead for a week or so I soon run out of puff. This isn’t a diet for me. I’m changing my habits. The habits of a lifetime. I’m forming new, healthier habits. These things take time. I know I’m going to have to throw out non approved food at the start of the round, and I know that the frugal “waste not want not” part of me is going to scream at this, so I’ve started taking baby steps. If I have something that’s not 100% “clean food”, I work it into my calorie count, and once it’s gone it’s not replaced. eg. I used to love fish finger sandwiches on fresh white bread. To use them up I now grill a few and have them with salad. No bread. Surprisingly enough I even enjoyed them that way. That way the meal was only around 350 calories, and the fish fingers got used up. I won’t be buying them again most likely. Little steps I know, but they are little steps in the right direction.

I’m still learning how to deal with red flag days though. I’m heading to a party tonight. We are going early so as to avoid road closures and parking issues. There’s no substantial meal being served (only fingerfood) and we are set to arrive between 5 and 5.30. I HATE eating dinner that early. So how am I going to deal with this? (another positive change – I’ve actually thought about how I’m going to deal with it in advance!) Firstly I’m driving. Admittedly that’s works decision more than mine (I’m on call), but hey it works. I make better food choices when I’m sober, plus I wont have all the extra calories in alcohol. I’m taking some diet mineral water for when I feel like drinking something other than water. I will allow myself 1 glass of champagne to toast at midnight. I started the day with a walk to burn off a few extra calories. 360 cal gone before breakfast, and that doesn’t count the walk up to the shops and back later in the day. Yesterday I did Michelle Bridges’ toning dvd and must have done something right because I feel my muscles today (particularly the big ones like quads and glutes). Repairing and building muscles burns calories. I’m making sure I eat low cal all day before the party, and spacing my meals so that I have a late, high protein, filling lunch before I go. I’m hoping that will help me limit what I put in my mouth tonight. I will position myself AWAY from the food table and particularly and dips at the party. If I want something I’m going to have to make a conscious effort to walk over to the table and get it. I will walk to the table and back for each and every morsel. No grabbing a few. If I try the dip, I will use chopped up veggies and not crackers and I will make sure that I at least alternate between veggies with dip and veggies on their own.

They are my strategies for this evening. It’s not perfect, but I think it should help me get through the night without a total blowout. It should also leave me feeling good enough to get up in the morning and burn off a few more of those extra calories I will be consuming.

I’d like to raise a toast to all of us: Here is to a Happy and Healthy 2013. May we all continue to support and inspire each other, be successful in reaching our goals, and perhaps even surprise ourselves with what we can achieve. And for me – may I never again let my weight hold me back.

Happy New Year!motivation 2

Miscalculations

Ok so I had a minor freakout last night when I realised I had miscalculated the dates for the round and that I am actually flying overseas 4 weeks BEFORE the program ends. In the past I would have used this as an excuse to give up before I began but continuing with my new found positivity I’ve decided that this isnt a major catastrophe. All it means is that I’m going to set myself a goal to reach by the end of Round 8 and that I’m going to have to really hard (harder than I had planned to) during the warm up and preseason in order to achieve that goal. I’m realistic enough to know that while I’m travelling I will not be counting calories, but I’m hoping that by having 8 weeks of the program under my belt I’ll be able to enjoy the different foods I love to try without going overboard, and that I will still be able to keep up with some exercise (makes me even happier I signed up for the “at home” workouts so I’m not reliant on a gym which I wont have access to while i’m away). Usually I lose weight while travelling – no doubt due to walking everywhere instead of sitting on the couch, but I’m going to get the bulk I’ve the weight I want off before I go.

To that end I did the Bay walk this morning with the lovely Carmel whom I met on this site. It being the last of my days off I usually would have slept half the day away, but thanks to Carmel I was out of bed and burned 710 calories before 9.30am and I have the blisters to prove it smile They may not have been the fastest steps on the Bay but they were purposeful steps on the road to finding myself again.

Facing the Consequences

Ok So it’s Wednesday and it’s weigh in day (26 Dec). Must admit I was dreading today. Why oh why does weigh in day come the day after Christmas??? I’ve been known to put on 2 or more kilos just on Christmas day before… and thats without attending any functions on Christmas Eve. This year I had Christmas Eve and Christmas Day food functions, so it was with much trepidation that I stepped on the scales this morning. I thought about my eating and drinking habits over the last couple of days… yes I had cut down on alcohol consumption and had replaced the soft drink I would normally drink with water… but I had also absolutely gorged myself on dips and crackers on Christmas Eve and whilst I didnt snack on Christmas Day I did have more prawns than I needed and I did have the pork crackling (including 2nds) and a pretty sizeable mound of those roast potatoes (my brother makes an awesome roast) I must admit the thought of not weighing in at all did cross my mind, but I decided that whatever the result I need to own it. Part of this journey for me is about not putting my head in the sand and ignoring what overeating does to me. So that’s it. Bite the bullet. Get on the scales. Own the result. Deal with it then move on.

OK. Stripped off, eyes closed I gingerly stepped onto the scales… I was even holding my breath. Had I put back on the weight I’ve lost over the last couple of weeks? Am I heavier than when I started? Will this number set me on a tailspin eating binge? Timidly I opened my eyes and peeked down half expecting to see a number starting with 1…phew still in the 90s… focus eyes… 96.6. Hang on a minute….that can’t be right… Quick head calculation…. that’s up 400g. Wow. Yes it’s up, but 400g isn’t really a lot. If I focus this week I can lost that and a bit more.

So it wasn’t as scary as I thought and I haven’t descended into the comfort eating tailspin that an increase on the scales usually causes. Instead I had a healthy breakfast and went for a walk. I’ve seen the result. I know why that result occurred. I own that the number went up because I ate too much and moved too little. That 400g increase is the result of choices I made. The bad choices led to the increase. The good choices minimised the size of the increase. Ok. I’m not going to beat myself up and feel miserable. I’m actually going to choose to be proud of those good choices. So this week more good choices so next weigh in I will have more to be proud of. I’m going to a BBQ today for lunch, but as I do NOT want to see that number creep up again next week I know I will be able to control my eating and drinking and enjoy the company. I’ve also decided to walk down there instead of driving. See good choices.

I hope everyone else is having a good day regardless of the numbers. To those of you who managed a decrease on the scales today AWESOME effort!

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas

Well it’s Christmas Eve. Usually this is a time of year when I totally pig out. Eating and drinking everything in sight. Chocolate for breakfast was not unusual. I used the excuse “it’s only once a year it can’t hurt”. Well it did hurt. Also I was using the eating to cover the hurt. Whilst I absolutely adore Christmas it does also serve to remind me that there are things that I don’t have in my life that I have always really wanted. Things like having my own children and partner to wake up with on Christmas morning and share the joys of the day with. Someone to help me decorate the house, or even to appreciate the decorating once they are up. For a single woman living alone, Christmas can actually be quite lonely. I have fabulous brothers and sisters in law who welcome me into their homes at any time of year, and are more than happy to have me at Christmas, but sometimes I still feel like a burden…. you know like the crazy old aunt that your parents used to argue about whos turn it is to host her as she has nowhere else to go and its wrong to leave her alone for Christmas. My family would no doubt be horrified if they knew I felt this way – its definitely more about how I feel about myself than how they feel. So anyway I used to eat and drink the pain away.

This year has been different though. There have still been numerous functions, parties and get togethers, and there have still been lonely hours at home alone, but this year I have something I havent had in previous years. Hope, inspiration and an absolute belief that I can change. I’m not saying I’ve done a complete turn around overnight. I havent. I still cry at night sometimes and wonder whether anyone (other than my brothers, their wives and my nieces and nephews) will ever love me. I still wish I had my own kids to spoil on Christmas morning, and a family of my own to share Christmas traditions with and I still LOVE chocolate. I havent been eating it for breakfast though. As a matter of fact I have hardly eaten any at all. Yes I bought myself 4 individual little ones when i was buying the gift boxes at Belle Fleur but I have so far only eaten 1 even though they have been in the house for days. Some of you may tut tut and say I shouldnt have eaten any, but you don’t realise what an achievement that is for me. Last year for example, I bought myself a full gift box (justifying it by saying it was a “spare” in case I had forgotten someone), and had eaten the 5 or 6 individual ones i bought within 1 hour of getting them home. The giftbox was devoured (by me) by new years… and only lasted that long cause I’d received others at christmas. So one bit size chocolate in 3 days is bloody close to a Christmas miracle!

You don’t know how many calories you have saved me just by being able to connect in a small way with you all here (on the 12WBT forums). Reading your stories and your struggles moves me and lets me know I’m not alone. Reading your hopes, and your positivity inspires me. I know I have eaten way less “junk” over the last couple of weeks and in a large part its because of you. When I’m lonely and/or bored at home I jump on here instead of opening the fridge (which doesnt have any junk left in it anyway cause I refuse to buy anymore so once its gone its gone). Hopefully I can keep that up over the next 3 days which are the biggest food days for me.

Another someone who will probably never know how much she helps me is my 4 year old niece. I may not have my own kids, but this little girl gives me more joy than I could ever hope for. Just as an example… Saturday evening, I was sitting on a blanket alone, waiting for my brother and his family to arrive at Carols in the Domain. Surrounded by laughing families, snuggling couples etc I was struggling to save the space we needed on my own and starting to lament my status (and thinking maybe I should have brought dips and chocolates to snack on). Just when I was starting to feel sorry for myself this little ray of sunshine bounds into my arms with a huge grin on her face screaming “Aunty PEEEEEJ!!!!!). After engulfing me with precious hugs she looks me in the eye and says “Guess what Aunty Peej?”
“What Mackenzie?”
“Santa comes in 3 sleeps!”
“Ohhh” I say. “how exciting!”
“And guess what else?” exclaims this adorable little bundle of love
“What?”
“Its only 2 more sleeps until you come to my house!!!”
So if a visit from me brings the same level of excitement to a 4 year old as the coming of Santa how could I possibly feel unloved? Definitely not the crazy old aunt no one really wants to host.

Knowing how much she looks up to me, helps keep me on track. I want to be the fun aunt she can do things with, that can keep up with her and run around with her. Once she arrived I no longer missed the dips etc I would normally have consumed at an event like that.

The positivity followed through to the next day too. I went over and visited my other brother, and as it was a hot afternoon took my swimmers to take a dip in their pool. Instead of my usual melancholy at how horrid I look in swimmers, I was actually thinking “gee cant wait till I no longer have to wear boardies to cover my thighs.” , “by this time next year I’ll be back in that bikini”. Instead of just sitting in the pool, I found myself constantly moving around, not doing laps or anything but just using the water as resistance to work my arms and legs a bit. My sister in law even noticed the little bit of weight I’ve dropped since last seeing her, which was lovely especially since i cant see it anywhere but on the scales yet. Not even the guilt trip laden Christmas card my mother sent me could dampen my spirits. (and that is a HUGE leap forward for me)

So here I am, looking forward to spending Christmas with my family (well the important members of it anyway). Yes I will still eat the Christmas roast etc, no I probably wont count the calories in that meal, but I have a sneaking suspicion I wont be finishing it so full I feel sick and can barely move. I also know that instead of eating to dull my pain, I will be embracing the love that does surround me and maybe even loving myself smile

So to my fellow members on this journey, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and I hope you all are surrounded by loving and supportive people. I KNOW we can get through this period without stacking on the kilos but still having a wonderful time with family and friends.

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

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About Me

I was a “lucky” kid in that I could eat whatever I wanted and never put on weight. I was warned that one day it would come back to bite me as I ate like a horse. Food in my house was both reward and punishment. My mum faced her own battles with weight. I had chubby siblings. I thought I was invincible though. I was the one in the family that wasn’t fat. Then I hit puberty. I grew curves and lots of them. My best friends didnt. At 52kgs I thought I was fat. (oh how I’d love to be in the 50’s now… or even the 60s. First step is to get down to the 80s). I tried not eating much at all (Year 12 consisted of eating one meal a day – if that). It didnt work. I was still bigger than my friends. I remember my first real boyfriend standing me naked in front of a mirror telling me I was beautiful while I sobbed and wondered how anyone could want me at all. In the end I gave up. I gave up on myself. I went back to eating anything and everything but at the same time started living a more sedentary lifestyle. I ballooned and ballooned big time. Every now and then I’d try something for a short time (eg Israeli army diet 6kgs lost in a week and put back on in 2 days when started eating “normally” again., Sureslim where I lost a bunch of weight but was feeling deprived, headachy and miserable the whole time). Each time I had a small success it would soon be overshadowed by putting on even more than I’d lost originally. Well I’ve finally had enough. I’m 39 years old. I do NOT want to be fat and 40. I want to look, and more importantly FEEL fabulous. I want to love myse;f so that others might love me too. This time I’m going for a total package – Healthy eating AND exercise AND mindset. I’ve seen the Michelle Bridges 12WBT on facebook and I’ve seen the success people have had on it.

The person who really inspired me to finally sign up though was girl I’ve never met, who won Round 3 of the program. her name is Casey and when I looked at her “before” photos I saw myself. She looks FANTASTIC now, and I really hope I can have the same sort of success she has.

Exercise is not something I’ve ever really enjoyed but I’m determined to find forms I do like and to JFDI (love that expression but do tend to use the expletive version) for the other ones. We are only in warm up phase at the moment and there’s a few weeks to go before we get access to the recipes and exercise programs but I’m feeling really motivated and inspired. I’m not waiting for the official kick off – I’m starting now! ‘ve armed myself with the Crunchtime cookbook to try some of Michelle’s recipes before the round. Am hoping the food is good as I do love to eat… I just want to learn to love to eat healthier foods.

Today I actually laughed when I got on the scales…. 1.2kgs lost this week. And thats just from making small changes such as trying a few of Michelles recipes from her book, taking lunch to work instead of buying crap and trying to make healthier choices when I do go out. If I can have that kind of success with that little effort I’m really excited about the changes that will come when I start the program in full. I’ve got an overseas trip booked that coincides with the end of Round 1 and I’m really looking forward to being fitter and slimmer for it. I’m hoping not to be the “fat one” out of the group of friends that I’m travelling with. On my last trip people made all sorts of assumptions about me because I was fat and I also let it hold me back from some things. I got altitude sickness but people just assumed I was fat and unfit instead of lacking in oxygen. I was the last girl chosen as a partner during tango lessons etc etc etc. Well no more. This is the start of a new me… well maybe not a new me, maybe just finding the real me that I’ve kept hidden under layers and layers for too long. I want to find the PJ that’s happy and confident in her own skin. That believes she is worthy of being treated with respect AND TREATS HERSELF WITH RESPECT. This is the beginning of my journey. I’m going to use this thread to track my progress emotionally and physically. I vow to be 100% honest with myself even if I don’t like the truth. If I don’t like it I will do whatever is in my power to change it and I DO have that power.

On 29th November 2012 I weighed in at 98kgs at 156cm tall. Im too fat dense to get a % reading off my scales. BMI 40.3

Today (19Dec) I weighed in at 96.2kgs. BMI 39.5. I have started. Emotionally this week is up and down. I’m struggling with a lot of issues at work (personality conflicts and politics mainly). I’m hating being single at this time of year and so I have come close to allowing others to take advantage of that (to the point where I almost compromised my own morals). Believe it or not that little victory on the scales this morning has really helped. I’m on the way. I’m making changes. I CAN do this. I CAN change the habits of a lifetime. I DO DESERVE THIS.

Goal for end of Preseason: 95kgs.
Goal for end of Round 1: 80kgs.
Ultimate goal: to be happy, fit and healthy at around 60kgs. (actual number may be adjusted downwards depending on how I feel when I get there)

*NOTE*:- when I started this journey I did not have the confidence to post my blog publicly, so kept it on the 12WBT forums so that only others on the same journey as me could read them. Through this program I have gained confidence so am now making my blog public. I have copied my older posts from the blog forum into here with some minimal editing.