21 06 2010

I bought a big girl domain and moved this blog over there.  So come join me!


On Falling Down

15 06 2010

Since I began this journey, I’ve fallen down many, many times.  Some days I fall down more than once.

My biggest issue still lies with food.  While the hemp hearts trial netted a 4 pound weight loss last week, I ran out of them and went two days without them and felt sluggish and down – which is also in line with some stressful stuff that happened too so I’m not sure if my energy level was the lack of hemp hearts or if my stress levels were up.

This past Sunday and Monday, things were not going my way at all and without going into huge detail, life had really kicked me in the balls.  Despite going to my favorite class, Zumba, Monday morning, I spent much of yesterday afternoon worrying, frustrated, and unfocused.

And I fell down, hard.  I binged. Even though I had planned a healthy dinner, I didn’t cook it.  Monday night dinner was raw broccoli, potato chips, 4 cookies with milk, and a midnight snack of a bowl of cereal with white sugar on top  – things I haven’t had in months.  Needless to say I felt like absolute shit by the end of it!

Beastie Boys’ Sabotage was playing in my head the whole time.  I’m not even kidding.  When I feel this way, I turn to this song to wake me up and pull me out before I do serious damage.

I had visions of gaining back all the weight, or never going to the gym again, of eating what I wanted when I wanted and finally, of the unhealthy, grumpy version of me that I once was.  I felt guilty, scared and angry with myself.  I was at a scary low.

Finally I stopped the anger train and thought about the stress that had caused me to eat my emotions away.  I knew exactly why I had done what I had done.

I held that ball of stress in my hands, rolling it over my palms and examining it’s particles.  I pulled it apart slowly, like taffy, and soon had smaller bits, smaller issues, lined up in a row.

I tackled the problems I could when I was done putting them into their own Mental Tupperware, and made plans to work on the things I couldn’t accomplish before bed last night.  I also let a couple of the insignificant issues slide.  I had to decide which parts of this burden were worth re-visiting, worth putting energy into, and decided that some of them were not worth the time required to think about them.  I trashed a few issues knowing they were not part of my ultimate life goals and walked away.

While everything isn’t back to peachy yet, I’m working on these things, one little piece at a time, in manageable bites.

It’s so easy to fall down.  It’s so easy to slip back into the comfort of {insert your sinful food here}.

I do it – usually just a stumble here and there, but sometimes a fall is so quick, so unexpected, it’s difficult to pick yourself up from the ground and remind yourself why you’re doing all of this.

So when you fall, pick yourself back up.  Take the time to dissect why you fell, but don’t dwell on the actual fall and beat yourself up.  Move forward with new knowledge on how to handle a stumble next time, and maybe your smarter brain and stronger legs will carry you back up before you even hit the ground.

50 Pounds and Drunk Athletes

11 06 2010

This morning I stepped on the scale to discover that the hemp hearts, on top of everything else, had broken my plateau.  YAY!

Also, as of today, I have lost 50 pounds since 2006, and 21 of those pounds were since March of this year.  So if you’re once of those people who saw me at BlogHer or Avitaween – I was stuck at 191 ish then, but I used to weigh 220.  Now I’m at 170.  30 pounds to go!  Maybe more!

50 pounds.

I am so proud.  I know it’s been a long, long journey, but I feel like now I’ve got everything going right – the food, the activity, the attitude.

Nothing can stop me from knocking off the next 30 pounds to get to my goal weight.  Except beer.  That might slow me down a bit over the summer.  Heh.

My husband called me yesterday and asked me if I’d like to do a triathlon with him.  He’s recently started biking at night and considering how hard he works physically (10 hour days, in all kinds of weather), I’m impressed that he has decided to get on this fitness kick with me.  He’s always been in pretty good shape, save for a bit of a beer belly and he plays hockey and baseball. It’s nice to see him getting out there to work off the beer!  =)

Anyway.  A triathlon.  Eep!

I’ve thought about it but never really researched any of it and so after googling and reading and asking friends to chime in, I discovered there’s a lot involved with a triathlon.

Like wearing a swimsuit for instance.  Oh sweet baby Jebuddah, really?  Alternately, you can rent/buy a wetsuit and wear that over your cycling/running clothes.  Okay.  Maybe that will be okay.

Then there’s docking  your bike at a ‘transition station’ while you’re swimming.  And being expected to ‘ride wet’ (unless you wear a wetsuit and peel it off before you ride).  Apparently that isn’t as uncomfortable as you might think.  Certainly more comfortable than all the ‘air quotes’ I’m using in this ‘post.’

I have so many questions before I commit to the “Tri a tri” we’re considering.  I’m not sure I’m ready for a full triathlon just yet.  The Tri a tri is a 375 swim, 10 k bike ride and then a 2.5km run.  I think I can handle that.  But the logistics are throwing me into a tizzy.

So let’s say I rent a wetsuit (or buy one).  I get out of the lake, peel it off and put it where?  A backpack? And where are my runners?  Cuz I will need those for riding and running.  And if I have to carry a backpack for the last two parts, won’t that suck royally?

Oh and there are all these things that can get you disqualified, like not passing cyclists fast enough – you have 15 seconds.  Or undoing the strap on your helmet before docking your bike or not having your helmet strap on before taking your bike too.  Safety first people.

I’m a little less worried about these rules than I am about getting kicked in my pretty face during the swim.  Really the swim is the most daunting.  Because of my pretty face and all.  Does anything else really matter?  I’m a strong swimmer, but like driving at night, I’m worried about the other people who could possibly be drunk.  Or something.  Because you see a lot of drunks at a triathlon.

This summer is going to take some serious training if I sign up for this ridiculousness.  Which I probably will because I’m certifiably insane.  Maybe I should sign up and just show up drunk.

Psst.  Do me a favour.  A little one.  Go tell @temptingmama she should do it with me.  She loves when I annoy her in such sneaky ways.

There is No Flipping Wagon.

8 06 2010

I’ve heard this a lot lately:

“I need to get on the healthy wagon.”

“I really should jump on that wagon again.”

“Oh I totally need to get on the exercise/eating well wagon with you!”

There is no flipping wagon.

You have to walk.  Run. Jog. Swim. Cycle.  Get your ass moving.  Period.

You have to plan. Shop. Cook. Think. Learn.  Eating healthy doesn’t come easy either. I have read a ton and learned a lot about eating healthy in the last 11 weeks.

Don’t tell me you’re going to do it.  Do it and tell me after.

Besides, riding any sort of wagon means you’re just sitting on your butt, not really involved in where you’re going, not driving yourself – just along for the ride.  Wherever that binge takes you, you’re going.  What great adventures you watch OTHER PEOPLE doing on the television, you’re just a passenger of life.  I know this.  I did it for 10 long years.  I know it well.

Something clicked 11 weeks ago.  Something inside me didn’t want to feel like a lump of passenger anymore.  Something inside me didn’t want to wake up with heartburn from a too salty/sweet/fatty diet that was threatening to suffocate me with my own stomach acid in my sleep.

I wanted to be healthy.  Not skinny, not sexy, just healthy.  I certainly didn’t want to fake it anymore with Yummie Tummies and Spanx.  Besides, I had to practically break a fat hip to get into to those things.  Not pretty.  There is nothing healthy about grunting and sweating and having your friend hump you from behind in order to squeeze your back fat into ugly support hose for torsos.

I wanted to run with my kids.  I wanted to be the fun Mom.  I wanted to be more patient, more relaxed.  My kids deserve that.  I deserve it.

I was tired of pulling at my clothes.  I was tired of seeing the scale bob up and down the same 5-10 pounds as my frustration grew and I fed my disappointment with rich food and junk.

I wanted to drive my own wagon, my own life.

So I did something about it.

I made myself accountable.  I recorded every damn thing I eat.  I recorded the exercise I did.  I am still teetering, finding that balance that puts my body into a healthy state of weight loss, averaging about 1.5-2 pounds a week, aside from the last 3 weeks whereby my body has decided to plateau.

I am not giving up.  A plateau is normal.  Imagine a  plateau on the side of a mountain.  A plateau is a rest point before a body says, DING DING! ROUND TWO!  Stay in the ring!

So today I started yet another trial: Hemp Hearts.

I went to one of those granola eatin’/tree huggin’ stores and was given a tub of hemp hearts – you put them on yogurt or fruit (or both), in salads, and there’s a slew of literature and recipes that came with it. It’s high in protein, but also high in (good) fat. I thought I’d try them out on breakfast for about a week and see if that kicks my 3-4 week plateau into gear.

By the way, they taste good – nutty.

The claims online seem a little out of line (1 pound a day weight loss which is crazy high) but I don’t think they are bad for you. My reality is in check – I don’t subscribe to crazy claims but I am trying them out.

Who’s with me?  Try one new thing this week.  A food, a new activity that gets you moving, anything that contributes to your health.

One. Thing.

Let’s rev those engines and drive our own lives.

So My Very Best Friends Think I’m Crazy *Now with an Update!*

6 06 2010

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.

no makeup FTW!

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.

i have a waist now!

mah butt is 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.


Before: sad indeed.

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:

It's so nice to know those jeans no longer fit! And I'm wearing a Yummie Tummie under that shirt - so it's not really accurate cuz some rolls are sucked in by that. (p.s. my yummie tummies are too big now.)

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 LOVING my life.

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.

My oldest & I after our 8km road race

I Don’t Know Who I Am Anymore

3 06 2010

So along with running, walking, cycling, Shredding, lifting weights and generally moving at every opportunity, on a whim I went to a Zumba class at my gym about a month ago, and FELL. IN. LOOOOVE.

If you’ve never heard of Zumba, it’s a dance class comprised of Latin and hip-hop moves, set to Latin and/or popular music.  My instructor is a new mom and lively and fun, as well as great with her cues, pointing in the direction we’re about to go.  The hour flies by and by 15 minutes in, sweat is pouring off of us.

Needless to say, it’s my absolute favorite workout.

The only issue I have with it is that the shoes I wear (my running shoes that I wear for all walking and running) have too much traction and so the torque on my knees is painful or impossible at times.

So I went online to look at what other bloggers recommend for Zumba shoes, and found these: Capezio® Unisex “Fierce” Dansneaker

My knees can’t wait until they arrive.

The other thing?  I’ve never, ever bought dance shoes in my life.  I’ve never, ever thought I ever would.  I’m stunned at myself.  Stunned I tell you.

One more thing?  I’m truly practicing all the dance moves with the DVDs at home and I’m seriously considering going through to be a Zumba certified instructor.  The next session is August 12th and it’s 3 hours away.  I’m not sure I’ll be ready that quick but I’m going to talk to my teacher next week.  Maybe.  I’m kinda nervous about it.  Like, uhhh, me?  A dance instructor?

Yeah.  Like I said, I don’t know who I am anymore.

Capezio® Unisex “Fierce” Dansneaker

Working the Numbers

2 06 2010

On LoseIt, you can see the nutritional information for your day or week, and that includes the percentages of protein, fats and carbs.  For a while I’ve been playing around with my diet to see how I lose the most amount of weight the fastest.

For me (and this may not work for everyone), I find that the ratio of approx 28% protein, 48% carbs and 24% fat (or as close to that as possible) works best for me.  Especially when I get 80-105 grams of healthy protein in per day.  This means lean turkey, lean cheese, chicken, and Genuine Health Transform + drink (one a day, made with water, after workouts).  If I stick to this, I lose about a pound a day.  It’s truly a breakthrough for me and very exciting because for months I’d make a healthy smoothie and the sugar in all that fruit was not helping my cause – until I added whey protein to the drink.

What else I’m learning is that if I don’t like a class or an exercise, I don’t stick to it.  If I’m not happy doing it, I won’t keep it up.  I tried a step class a few weeks ago and hated it.  I felt uncoordinated, out of place, and I fell on my butt by tripping over the friggin’ step.  Now I’ve never been the most coordinated person, even as a kid, but Zumba suits me way better since there’s nothing to trip over.

As for running, lately it’s been way too hot to do it.  The 8k I did a couple of weeks ago?  Yeah.  80-90 degree heat + humidity.  A guy collapsed, many were puking, it was stupid.  I felt great after, but super tired.  I had my Transform+ and bunch of water when we got home and crashed into a hard nap – probably the best nap I’ve ever had, where I dreamt of The Cheesecake Factory the entire nap.  Ha.

I’ve really been enjoying my bike lately.  Even if it’s hot, it’s enjoyable to make your own breeze!  Yesterday I tried really hard to beat my husband’s time of 24 km in an hour, but I only got to 17km in that time.  The first 7 km were against really strong winds and I felt like I was going in slow motion.  It was a great workout.  I’m still getting used to the seat so my nether regions won’t go numb after a half hour so there’s that.  And yes, I bought a gel seat cover – but by the time I get to an hour, I can’t wait to get off the bike and return bloodflow to my bird.

Today’s weight: 172.  48 pounds gone.  Woot!  I haven’t been in the 160’s in YEARS and can’t wait to get there.