And maybe they are right. I try very hard to fit exercise in every day. This past weekend I was invited to a girl’s weekend at one of my best friends’ trailer and nearly all of my very best friends were there. Friday morning I had to pack and finish laundry but knowing I’d be drinking beer all weekend, I wanted to ensure I got a solid workout before I went.
I set out on my bike and decided I would set a goal of creating a best time for the 7.7 km loop by my house. Now I’m not fast at running or cycling by any means, but I do know that every time I go out, I try to beat my last time.
So I biked like hell, despite my bird feeling numb and sore about 15 minutes in. I knew it was the result of the 17.38 km cycle from the other day, so I persevered, determined to do the route in less than 24 minutes.
And I did: 22:56.
I drove to the trailer, stopping along the way to visit another friend I hadn’t seen in about a year. Once at the trailer (4 hours later!), we were soon into the beers and the girls were really forthcoming in telling me how much my hard work is paying off. I don’t like talking about it and so I find it hard to just say thank you without getting really uncomfortable and stuff. I need to get better at that.
We played poker and the snacks were there but I didn’t touch anything but my drinks. One of the girls told me the next day how astounded she was at my willpower to not touch any of it. I dunno. Beers have tons of calories and I’m sure I drank way more than I should have but these weekends are only every few months and it’s been at least that long since I let loose.
You gotta live.
We had a really fun night and crashed hard. The next morning we sat around a little over coffee, tea and breakfast and I felt restless. I’m used to having some exercise-y crap planned and I was bursting with energy to do something. We walked around the nearby zoo/park thing and then went into town for dinner groceries and snacks galore. When we got back everyone wanted to snack for a bit from about 2:30 but I wasn’t at all hungry so I quietly changed into my running clothes and asked if anyone wanted to come. I didn’t want to call attention to myself but I didn’t want to just run off either so it was another uncomfortable moment (for me, not them I think) but in the end I think everyone was cool with me doing my own thing.
The place where we were at was very hilly. VERY. VERY. HILLY.
The hills were flipping huge. Look:
Yeah. I ran using the EI10K (Ease into 10 Km), feeling powerful as I conquered hill after hill and then feeling the rush of a quicker downhill run as I crept to the top and ran fast down. I felt so free and there was no one around – just me, my iphone and nature. Oh and a pink toilet at the side of the road. Yanno, just in case.
I ran about 6 km, maybe 6.5 – I wasn’t tracking distance because I wanted the prompts of the EI10K computer dude so I’d know my time – somehow the computer dude telling me I have 5 or 2 or 1 minute to go keeps me going strong.
When I returned, one of the girls snapped a picture and I thought that maybe now is a good a time as any to share my progress from March 2010 to now. These were from yesterday:
I should have stood up straighter maybe! Mah boobies are disappearing.
The pants I’m wearing in the before picture (below) don’t fit anymore – I’m in a medium pant now – about a 10-12 from a 14-16 or XL. My weight has gone from 191 to 172 since the end of March (11 weeks ago) and I can see some big differences and other times I still see that fat chick. It’s kinda freaking me out.
And now for the horrid before pictures:
UPDATE: I found a picture of me at 220 pounds (my heaviest) back in 2006:
Then there’s this from 11 weeks ago – 191 pounds.
And to compare that same purple shirt from above – the before – when that shirt was hugging me tight and I was busting out of my size 14 jeans – hello, back fat:
Okay so maybe my hard work is paying off. A lot.
There are times when I wake up and feel totally fat. I try really hard not to compare myself to others but sometimes it’s hard to remind your silly brain to cut it out.
In order to avoid comparing myself to others, I try to compare my abilities to what they were a month ago, 2 months ago, and when I began all this: a mere 11 weeks ago.
Today I can run up to 8 km without feeling like I’m going to die. 11 weeks ago I could run 3 minutes and couldn’t catch my breath enough to talk to my running partner.
Today I am considering becoming a Zumba instructor. 11 weeks ago I hadn’t heard of Zumba.
Today I am better, faster and stronger than 11 weeks ago. 11 weeks from now I will be better, faster and stronger still. And that, my friends, is pretty damn exciting.