Getting back into the swing of things… slowly

Down 700g for this week. Better than last week. It did teach me not to do sneaky mid week weigh ins though.. I was down a whole kilo as of Sunday and did nothing “wrong” between then and today to warrant the increase of 300g.  700g for a week like this is good though. Nutrition is still not 100%. I think I hit the worst of it on the weekend though. Friday run club which I normally LOVE, I ended up in tears. We were doing hill runs which are never easy, but when you’ve filled your body with crap for weeks leading up to them they are downright horrendous. I’m a stubborn cow though, so I kept pushing myself. Could hardly breathe (to the point where people asked me if i was asthmatic), wanted to throw up but was so damned mad at myself I just kept pushing. The girls were amazing though. I truly am blessed to have so much support around me. Coach took me aside for a bit of a chat and kept checking in with me all day. Result: first crap free day all week.

Saturday I was determined to bang out a real super session. I did bootcamp in the morning as usual, then got the shopping done and headed out to Homebush to meet up with a friend to try and complete a 10km run. By the time we started it was 11am and Sydney had turned on an absolute pearler of a day. Bright blue skies and warm sunshine…. about 1km in I was cursing that sunshine. It felt HOT! No shade out there, but the lovely Kate had mapped out a nice flat route for my first 10km. I couldn’t let her down. It wasn’t fast (1hr 13min) and it defintely wasn’t pretty… and I fought with myself the whole way around but it got DONE! 10.3km non stop. A personal record for me. Thank goodness Kate accepts that i’m a little crazy and didnt freak out when I started yelling at my legs (body was doing that thing where it works a pain around the body… shin splints, stitch, shoulder pain etc which was fine, until it went back to shin splints and I dedided that doubling back was against the rules). Not did it phase her when i started chanting “I can do this” in time with our footfalls outloud to try and quiet the voice in my head that was telling me I was too fat/old/unfit etc to do this. I must say that that is the most negative my head has ever been during a run. It’s scary. Thankfully the out loud chanting and the support of my wonderful running partner got me through it. There was no runners high at the end of that run (at least not for me – Kate on the other hand was flying high after running way slower than she usually would so I could keep up) but I was really pleased that I won the mental battle and got it done. I followed it up on Monday with another 9km + run near home. Legs were aching and I didnt manage to run the steep hill after the stairs that time but I did run the rest and theres no shame in walking 120m up a 45′ gradient 8km in.  I did manage all 75 burpees and 150 lunges (75 each leg) at the end of the toning session last night so its no wonder my legs are dead today.

Food the rest of the week has been pretty good until today. I broke down and ate chocolate in spite of my pledge to stay off it completely for this week. No real reason just an “I want it” and couldn’t be bothered fighting the impulse for too long. Not going to beat myself up though. Tonight its off to Kimax and I’ll beat up the boxing bag instead. Also gives my legs a little bit of a break as I’m not going to do a run today (other than running around in class).

So the week isn’t perfect but it’s not that bad and the scales are still moving in the right direction. Hopefully things just keep getting better from here

Figuring out the why

Well today is Weigh In Wednesday… or as it has been rebranded – Weekly Checkpoint Wednesday. I’m not jumping with joy today although I probably should be. I lost 300gms. The number itself is not jumpworthy but the fact I lost anything at all given the week I have had food wise probably is. But I’m not jumping. I’m disappointed in myself. I have eaten myself stupid this week. Not just at the 3 social events I’ve had where I ate (and drank) way more than I needed to either. What most disappoints me is what is happening at home. Boredom and unpreparedness are my worst enemies. Monday I had a morning with Nanna which is never fun. Stupid thing was I thought it was Tuesday morning that i had her, so when the reminder went off in my phone for her appointment it threw me totally out of sorts. I did grab a healthy breakfast before i ran out the door but that was it. My laziness over the weekend also meant I hadn’t done the weekly shopping, so after finishing with Nanna I stopped off at Coles on my way home… but by then I was hungry. I should NEVER shop when I’m hungry. Especially when i have been craving crap, namely red rock deli chips, for days. Result was I detoured down the crap aisle and specifically bought chips… AND chocolate. Then I ate the bloody chips in the car on the way home. The whole large bag! To top that off when i got home, instead of making myself a healthy lunch i ate an entire block of chocolate. I can’t even blame TTOM! It’s total self sabotage. 1800 cals of self sabotage. That was the “lunch” my body was supposed to draw the nutrients it needs to fuel me for the afternoon from.

Now my body is an absolutely amazing machine. Tuesday night I went for a run. My body, fuelled by total rubbish, ran 9.3km in 1hr and 4 min including running up stairs and some decent hills. My body is a miracle. I am in awe of it. 9.3km!

That run felt FANTASTIC. Even whilst I was doing it! Well ok it was mainly the last 1km which was downhill which felt fantastic but still it felt right. Feeding my face chips and chocolate did not feel right. It felt wrong. Why then did I do it? Why is it that sitting here now writing this post I want to do it again? Why 8 months into this journey have I not learned this lesson?

I need to figure out the why. I need to start being totally honest. The nutrition slippage hasn’t just happened. It’s been going on for a while now. It’s been pretty bad almost constantly since my birthday. (result being I am only 200g lighter than I was 3 weeks ago).  The only reason my weight isn’t up I think is because I seem to have found my running mojo. I need to control the food. I have a sneaking suspicion that all the compliments I have been receiving lately may have something to do with it. My family and friends have really started to notice the loss and are telling me I look great. They are telling me they are PROUD of me. Is that it? Do I not think I deserve pride and praise? Am I self sabotaging to prove them wrong? I mean I’ve been proud of myself. I guess though, the pride I have found in myself has not been about the weight loss. I have been proud of achieving distances or times in my runs. I have been proud of finishing challenges I thought impossible. The weightloss though doesn’t feel like an achievement. In all honesty I sometimes feel guilty about it. It’s been easy. Shit now I’ve said it out loud I realise there is a lot of guilt associated with that. Weightloss is not meant to be easy right? If it was easy I should have done it years ago… or never let myself become a 98kg 156cm blimp in the first place. But really doing the 12WBT the weightloss part is easy. Follow the program (food + exercise) and the weight comes off. Simple. But yet not so simple. My head is my biggest enemy.

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I need to convince myself that I am worthy of praise. Worthy of people’s faith in me. I need to believe it is ok not to be invisible (note to self write blog on invisibility). I need to learn how to live in this new slimmer but still far from slim body. I need to value what it can do enough to fuel it right. I know this in the logical part of my brain, but obviously there is another part of me that is still struggling with these concepts or else I would not be eating enough to fuel a Romanian weight lifting team! I feel like I am letting people down. The amazing pink ladies (12WBT inner westies) who on a daily basis inspire me with their amazing achievements. I present this front to them. I pretend I am in control. That I’m smashing goals. But I’m not. I’m stuffing my face. I’m lying to them and to myself. My family who are so proud. My friends who show so much faith in me and who bought me such thoughtful gifts for my birthday for this new body. I am letting them all down. But mostly i am letting myself down. I just don’t know how to stop… and I’m SCARED, I’m so scared I will go back to that fat unhappy blob. I don’t want to do that. I want to be the fit, healthy PJ everyone else thinks I am becoming. I just need to fix my head

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*Edit: Sorry if this post is rambling. I find just putting thoughts on paper can sometimes help me.

It’s all about Perception

Weigh in morning Wednesday I didn’t have high hopes. My body had told me I needed to back it off a bit so although I had done 5 days of exercise I’d gone a bit easier than usual and instead of a Super Session on Saturday I’d done a (most enjoyable) belly dancing class and only burned around 350 cals. Couple that with not 1 but 2 red flag days where calorie counting went out the window and I figured I would be lucky to get away with no gain. Surprisingly I still managed to lose half a kilo so I’m absolutely thrilled with that! Just goes to show that this program has really helped bring my metabolism back to life.

There have been a few things happening on facebook lately which got me to thinking…One lady posted that she has been getting lots of compliments about her weight loss but can’t yet see it in herself. Another lady put up a family photograph that had been taking and explained how horrified she was by how she looked it and how much she hated the photo. I looked at the photo and the first thing I noticed was the way her young sun was hugging her with a total adoring grin on his face. To me the photo radiated love. Obviously her son has no problem with the way she looks, all he sees is his wonderful mummy who loves him and takes care of him and whom he loves and adores with all his heart and probably thinks is the most beautiful woman in the world. She looks at the photo and sees only her excess weight. Myself and others look at the photo and see only a loving family.

The same feelings came up with the lady who cant see her own weight loss. I’m the same, I can see the results on the scales, I know logically that having lost almost 20kg there has to be less of me and I have to look slimmer. I get compliments from my family and friends on how good I am looking. However when I look in the mirror I don’t see a slimmer woman… I see the fat.I see the rolls on my stomach, the wobbly thighs, the bingo wings. Don’t get me wrong, I KNOW I’m fitter. Its much easier to see the fitness improvements. I can run longer, I can lift more, I don’t get puffed easily anymore. All that is easy to recognise. But the shrinkage? I still can’t see that. Even when I’m working out its hard not to focus on the tummy flapping up and down!

So maybe it’s time to look at ourselves through someone else’s eyes.  Maybe we should try to see ourselves the way our loved ones do… or even how complete strangers do. Others don’t focus on our flaws. We do that. Why are we harsher on ourselves than anyone ever would be? So for this week that’s going to be my personal challenge. I’m going to try and see myself the way my 4yo niece sees me – The super fun, energetic, adventurous aunt who can keep up with her and isn’t afraid of anything… not even fat. Who knows, she may be right. It’s all about perception 🙂

Getting back into the swing of things

This morning was week 1 round 2 weigh in. As it was only 2 days since my “start” weigh in I wasn’t expecting much. I nearly fainted in the bathroom when I saw the result though – 2.5kg down! Now in no way do I think that is 2.5 kg of fat, but I am very happy. Happy because it means I didn’t really gain as much weight as I thought while I was on holidays, and happy because I am only 400g over what I was when I left Australia a month ago. I should be able to drop that this week and continue the weight loss.

There have been some other consequences to the holiday lifestyle I was living and not all of them are pleasant. My skin is awful at the moment. I’m covered in zits, my skin has lost it’s glow, I look grey and pasty. Hopefully a couple of weeks of clean eating and drinking plenty of water will fix that. I’ve also got jet lag for the first time ever. I’ve slept only about 8 hours in the last 96 and 4 of them were last night! I’m exhausted. My immune system is low (lack of fresh fruit and veggies while away I think) so I picked up a cold on the plane. Add TTOM and I feel generally crap. House looks like squatters have moved in as I’ve had no energy to do anything.

I did at least get the shopping done and so have eaten well for the last couple of days. I’m already starting to feel better. I can’t undo all the damage over night but I know I’ll be back to the new/old me very soon. Haven’t managed any exercise yet (prioritizing sleep and recovery) but will do my fitness test after work today.

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Smashing Milestones

It’s funny how we get fixated on numbers and attach such significance to them. eg $19.99 sounds so much better than $20. It’s the same with weight loss. I would love to get to 80kg by the end of this round but if I can get to 79.9 I will be over the moon. Just cause it starts with a 7… even though there is no real difference. Last week I was sitting at 9.4kg lost since I started this journey in Warm Up. I don’t remember every having lost 10kg in a chunk before (I know I’ve lost and gained it several times over in smaller bits). I really really wanted to get to that 10kg lost, but I also found that I was trying to sabotage myself all week, perhaps trying to subconsciously give myself an excuse in case I didn’t get there, or maybe trying to prove to myself that I couldn’t get there.

I’m not quite sure what it was. I know I missed training on 3 days – and 2 of those days were cardio days… the worst possible days to miss for quick weight loss. I struggled daily with “cravings” for crap. Thanks to the things I’m learning on the 12WBT program though and the support network I have gained from it, I managed to stick to my 1200 calories a day. Yes I admit on a couple of those days some of my snack calories were taken up with chocolate, but I made sure that the chocolate was not eaten until at the end of the day and only if there were calories left over, even if I’d been wanting it since breakfast. I did try distracting myself by doing the dishes after dinner etc and only having it if I still wanted it after everything was cleaned up. Some days it worked, others it didn’t. But at least I didn’t gorge on it. 1 or 2 small pieces only (got to love a Lindt ball for controlling portion sizes but still satisfying the cravings.) On the days I did manage to train I trained hard, so I was pleased with that.

It was therefore with mixed emotions that I got on the scales this morning. The bathroom happy dance was on again when I saw I’d dropped 1.3kg! That brings the total to 10.7kg since warm up and 5.5 since the round started. It’s also 1/3 of the way to where I want to be by the end of the year. I didn’t only reach that 10kg milestone I smashed through it! It was like a weight was lifted off my shoulders (as well as my gut, butt etc wink ) Now that the 10kg is gone the pressure is off. I WANTED to train. For the first time in a week I don’t want junk food.

I celebrated this win by doing the baywalk. I had no intentions of running any of it. I just wanted to walk it at a really good pace. I met up with a friend and we power walked around it. I really don’t think I could have moved my legs any faster at a walk. At a couple of points I felt so good I HAD to run. Me… who has always hated running. I even sprinted the last little bit to where we parked the car. I still can’t run for long, but I actually found myself enjoying the little short bursts. Once I can get my breathing sorted so that the air goes all the way into my lungs instead of feeling like there is a blockage at the top of my chest (same reason I struggle to drink during a hard training session) I know I will be running much further. I downloaded the 4km running program Mish suggested for the Mothers Day Classic and I’m going to take that with me when I go overseas as my training program. I figure I should be able to do that anywhere and fit it in around sight seeing. Having looked at it, I’m not quite up to the week 1 level yet (1km tempo runs + sprints + 1.5km long run!) but it gives me something to work towards and will hopefully keep me motivated while I’m away.

I fully expect these demons to raise their ugly heads again at my next milestone weight… it could be when i’m close to weighing 80kg, or it might be when I’m close to the 20kg loss mark… or even the 15 (although I’m more a round numbers girl) or it could be at all of those. Thing is, I know what to expect now, and I know (with a little help) I can get through it and achieve what I set out to. Those goals don’t seem unrealistic anymore grin

Subconscious Self Sabotage

I’ve been thinking lately about my previous efforts to lose weight and I’ve noticed a few things. My biggest problem I think was that I always addressed food and exercise separately (either going on a diet OR exercising) and that I NEVER addressed the mental aspects of why I binge on junk, why I don’t exercise, why I allowed myself to build up this much fat and let my fitness fall to that of someone twice my age. I guess that’s what attracted me to the 12WBT program – it’s a total package. I also liked that instead of packaged meals it will teach me to cook healthy versions of foods I normally like to eat, and introduce me to some (hopefully) new favourites.

Then I started thinking specifically about exercise. I have always found diets much easier to stick to than exercise plans, and so I started thinking about what causes me to stop once I’ve started. What I realised shocked me. My body starts to try and sabotage my efforts! I’ve always known the mind was a powerful thing (have been known to be vomiting for a few days when there is something I am supposed to do but really don’t want to but medically there is nothing wrong with me) but this is ridiculous. Here I have been trying to do something good for my body, something I thought I wanted and yet my mind was somehow convincing my body to throw up road blocks. There’s a pattern too:

Week 1: utter exhaustion. Can’t wake up in the mornings. Seem to need to sleep 16 hours a day.
Week 2: blisters.
Week 3: Head cold symptoms.
Week 4: Hips ache
Week 5: random muscle cramps
Week 6: Knees hurt

I must admit the knees is a new one as I’ve never gotten this far through the cycle before. I’ve always given up at one of the previous road blocks. I think I’ve only been to Week 5 once before and that was when I’d paid for a group of PT sessions. The stupid thing about me giving up previously is that if I had just worked through each road block as it comes up instead of giving up, they actually go away. I still have occasional days where I need more sleep but its nothing like week 1. My blisters have almost completely healed. Headcold – gone. Hips and muscle cramps – barely a twinge this week.

It’s almost like my body is asking me “Do you really want to do this?”, “Are you sure you are ready?” and trying to give me an option to back out gracefully by blaming it on one of those factors instead of on myself (excuses anyone?). It’s tried doing it with food too – cravings for things I hardly ever eat normally but now think I MUST have.

So instead of looking at them as sabotage attempts, or road blocks, I’ve decided to look at them differently. They are tests- making me recommit to my goals every time a new one comes up. So far I’ve been passing with flying colours and I’m quite proud of myself for that smile They are also farewells. Each time one comes up I am saying goodbye to an excuse that used to hold me back. I’m not scared of them any more. I’m in awe of the power my mind has over my body, and am determined to harness that power and use it for good instead of harm (and hoping that if I can turn the conscious mind around the sub conscious will follow). I’m actually rather interested to see what it throws at me next… and how long it takes before it stops trying to test me and starts working with me.

You see this time I KNOW I’m going to make it all the way through. I know it because I can feel the fears associated with what my life will be like when the weight is gone – when I can no longer use my fat as an excuse for holding back in the rest of my life. Those fears are real but they aren’t debilitating, because right along side them is this optimism about the things I will be able to do.. and about the things I’ve already started to do. Each day the fear subsides just a little and the optimism burns just a little brighter. I am winning this war… and for me it is a war – with numerous battles against inner demons and a lifetime of bad habits. I have lost battles in the past but I have learned from them. I’m equipping myself with the right arsenal this time – fighting the battles simultaneously on all fronts so that dreaded mental stuff can’t outflank and do a sneak attack on me. Most importantly I’m getting myself the right support troops:
– The fabulous people I’ve met on these forums and in the facebook groups that I know I can lean on when necessary and that I hope know they can lean on me too.
– The inspiring people I’ve met in person who have done previous rounds of 12WBT and turned their lives around
– and my “intell cell”. The people involved in the 12WBT program themselves. Exercise gurus, nutritionists etc that are giving me the tools I need to get this done.

When I look at that I see what a formidable army I’ve got around me. It’s both humbling and empowering. I know that its me that has to do the day to day “dirty work” but its also me that gets to reap the rewards.

I can’t wait for the round to kick off fully but in the mean time I’m really enjoying the battles I’m already winning.

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Walking my Own Path

Today is Weigh In Wednesday and guess what? DOWN 800g! Ok it’s not a huge number and I do get a bit jealous / disheartened when I read about those of you losing over 2kg in your first few days or 1.5kg a week. (Thrilled for you, but still a bit jealous). Then I think about it. This is my journey. I am not in competition with anyone other than myself. There will always be people who lose more, there will probably be people who lose less and there may even be those who lose none or gain a little. Everyone is on their own path. As long as my weight consistently comes down I have no reason to be disheartened. In fact I’m pretty pleased that I lost more this week than last week. And I’ve definitely lost more than I would have had I continued on my previous lifestyle path!

There were a couple of other positives this morning too. That weight loss puts me only 200g off the goal I had set myself for the END of preseason and preseason doesn’t even START for another 5 days! I KNOW I can drop 200g in 5 days! I’m thinking I will need to set a new goal for end of preseason…Thinking out loud here. It seems that with my current attempts to eat well and exercise more I’m losing between 400 and 800g a week… so, as preseason is 4 weeks long I’m going to aim for another 2.4kg drop by end of preseason. That should hopefully see me start the round at 92.6kg. Wow. That’s huge! I haven’t been under 95kg in at least 3 years. Maybe longer. I’m really looking forward to not being in the 90’s at all anymore, but baby steps.

I’m hoping once the round kicks off and I have the eating plan and exercise plans to follow that the weight loss increases pace a little bit. I know at the moment I’m actually struggling to eat the 1200 cal. I actually need to snack more. OK that is something I NEVER thought I would say! I guess when you switch from being someone who basically gorged from about 2pm until bedtime but didn’t eat before that, to someone eating 3 calorie controlled meals a day with one afternoon snack (I don’t seem at all hungry for a morning snack) it just takes the body a while to adjust.

I almost forgot another HUGE achievement this morning. I actually managed to do Michelle’s Cardio Kicker DVD in its entirety! Yes I did the low impact options for most of it, but previously I’d only been able to get through a couple of segments even with the low impact options. Pretty proud of myself for that. I guess my fitness is improving. 48 min. 392 calories burned, maximum HR 172, ave HR 147. Time in zone 24 min. Sweated up a storm. Not bad for a loungeroom workout.

Yesterday was another first for me. I met up with a gf and we went down to the Fairlight tidal pool with our kickboards and swam laps. I’ve NEVER been a lap swimmer, and in all honesty if I had been there by myself I would probably have gotten bored in 10 minutes and left. Actually I would never have gone in the first place as I would have been too worried about someone calling Greenpeace to rescue the great white whale stranded in the pool. Instead though Michelle and I chatted and laughed up and down the pool, throwing in speed laps every now and then. When we got out we discovered we had been at it for an hour and a half!!! I didn’t have my HRM on (not sure if it is waterproof) but plugging the numbers into MyFitnessPal, I burned between 680 cal (snorkelling) and 816 cal (swimming leisurely, general). Not bad for spending a fun morning cooling off on a stinking hot day with a friend! We’ve decided to make it a weekly thing, at least while the water temp is good.

I’m really enjoying finding ways to socialize that don’t involve food. Previously every social occasion centred around eating and or drinking so this is a huge change for us. It wont be possible with every “friend” I know, and I may end up seeing less of some of them as a result but I’m hoping to make some new ones along the way and to spend the bulk of my free time actually DOING instead of eating and watching. There are so many things I want to try, and to experience. I’m not letting my (previously) appalling level of fitness and rolls of fat hold me back any longer.

“Limitations only exist if you let them”. Well I’m not letting them anymore. Bring it on life! I’m ready!

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