Saturday, July 23, 2011

Adding Injury to Insult

What? I haven't blogged since Monday? Well, it has been a crazy busy week I suppose. A quick run-down:
  • Tuesday: Gym - c25k Week 3/Day 2, chest and triceps, abs/core
  • Wednesday: Gym - Recumbent bike 25 min, legs and shoulders, abs/core
    I was away at a conference and had to use the hotel fitness room to work out. The recumbent bike was old and HARD! I was on Level 1 and thought I wouldn't make it. I was pleased that I got to exercise though since we all went out to dinner. I tried to make half-decent food choices but also had a vodka tonic and a glass of wine. No desert, not for lack of trying, we couldn't find an open ice cream shop. Thursday morning breakfast was at the hotel and I made ok choices at that.
  • Thursday: Gym - c25k Week 3/Day 3, back and biceps, abs/core work, plus I added 25 minutes on the bike.
    So at the gym on Thursday I noticed my body was feeling a bit worn out. I looked back at my journal and realized that I had exercised for 8 days straight. No wonder. I decided that I would definitely take the next day, Friday, off from the gym. It's a good thing I did, which I'll tell you more about in a bit. Thursday evening was a dinner out with the mother's club. My choices were less than stellar (read: bread/butter, crab cakes, french fries, etc, etc, etc) and I had champagne and wine.
This brings us to Friday morning. Weigh-in. Despite all of the dining out (and alcohol) I really thought the scale would go well. It didn't. I don't know, maybe I'm in denial. I am telling myself it's not a big deal, that the point isn't to lose weight. I'm telling myself that this is a lifestyle, something I will do forever so momentary setbacks are both expected and surmountable. But no matter what I tell myself it's still hard to swallow. I am up 2.5 pounds this week to 196.5 pounds. Ouch. Two point five pounds. Honestly, seeing that number on the scale was a bit of a shock. Here are some of my thoughts...

Reasons I thought I would lose:
- I have exercised every day. Burned 2500+ calories at the gym.
- I tried to balance dinners out with a very light lunch that day.
- My period was nearly gone.
- I also added extra cardio twice in an effort to balance all the food.

Fine, I didn't lose. But did I have to gain half the weight I'd lost so far? So I had to face that and, of course, try and figure out what happened.

Reasons I had a gain:
- Two big dinners out, including alcohol
- My period was ending but still possibly a factor
- I didn't take off my undies or take my scrunchie out of my hair for my weigh-in. Maybe they are heavier than I think?
- The scale hates me.
- Life is not fair.

Admittedly, I got a little weird in my thinking and explaining. But what a slap in the face from that scale! I have half a mind to throw the damn thing in the garbage! There was some definite backlash in response. I moped around all day with this, "Screw it" attitude. I had to eat lunch at a restaurant on Friday (work related) and almost ordered fish and chips as a result of my bad attitude. I reigned it in somewhat and order a BLAT (BLT with avocado). Instead of the fries it comes with I had onion rings. Better than fish and chips? Hard to say. And I've been in a bit of an eating free-for-all since then. Friday night (last night) I went to a party and ate whatever and had plenty of desert. Today, Saturday, we went to an amusement park and I ate a bunch of chips. Ugh. Self destructive revenge is so irrational!

I forgot to add that my body is not doing so well. I was feeling achy on Friday but today, Saturday, I woke up with my back actually hurting! I had to take ibuprofen to get through the day and then this evening it started hurting again. What's the deal with that? I hope it stops hurting soon. Needless to say I skipped the gym again today. I feel like this is just adding insult to injury - or I suppose it's the other way around, injury to insult.

So here I am, Saturday evening, and I'm calling a truce. I will get back to eating better starting tomorrow and I will go to the gym if my back is better. This has been a rough week. I'm used to having Wednesday off so working 5 days, missing my day home with my kids, staying at a hotel, working my butt off at the gym, nights out (which were fun but still tiring) - whew! The good news is I am taking Monday off. I have an action packed day planned...kidding! I plan to catch up on some things around the house and generally take it easy.

As far as my weight goes I am reminded of two things. Weight Watchers is there if/when I need it. Two steps forward and one step back will still get you there eventually.

Monday, July 18, 2011

A Turtle with a Complex

I have noticed an interesting difference between my pre-kids weight loss journey and my current one. Well, there's been more than one difference but the most notable is impatience. When I was losing those 75 pounds I rarely felt any sense of urgency. In general, I didn't get bummed when I only lost x amount of weight, I didn't have any deadlines (as in "I have to lose 10 pounds by next month), and I often didn't get frustrated with the amount of time to go before I was "in shape". I find myself dealing with those things now.

Last time, when I started the journey I was beaten down and feeling nearly hopeless before I even started. I think starting from that point led me to feel grateful with every little accomplishment. I could generally celebrate a victory of any sort without feeling cheated or frustrated by some other setback. It wasn't the first time I'd lost weight but because I started at that, I guess you could say, bottom, it was a novel experience. Because I started the journey with such low expectations, even suspecting it would probably not work, I was hardly ever disappointed. Expectations - that's it, that's what I need to work on. It's a bit of a catch though. Isn't it good to expect results? I suppose the idea, and what I had before, was to approach it with a "I'm am going to put in the work, do the right thing, and results with naturally follow."

That's how I want to feel again. I don't want to be feeling impatient, feeling like things need to move along faster. I want to enjoy the journey, slow down, smell the roses, find the joy in the process again - because there is a lot of joy to be found in transformation. Arriving is only a small part of the journey. I also strongly believe if I do this with the end result in mind, if lose sight of the process, then I am engaging in some risky diet-mentality behavior. IT IS ALL ABOUT MAINTENANCE! If that is true, then this is not me on a trip to somewhere (fitness, weight loss, fill in the blank), this is me living the life I will live for the rest of my life. Writing this is already helping. I am not in a hurry, I do not have a deadline, I am making permanent changes, returning to a way of life that actually makes me happier, brings me to a calm, centered place. I get so very much out of leading a healthy lifestyle. I do not need the "reward" of weighing a certain weight, of fitting into a particular pair of pants, or running x number of miles. My reward is the way I feel right now.

Whew! Glad I got that off my chest. I really do feel better about this. Now, just to make it stick. Funny, I've been dealing with this and today WW posted this an article about slow weight loss. This was my favorite paragraph (I bolded the parts that really spoke to me):
Why slow weight loss lasts

"I'm glad my weight loss was slow for me because I feel like I really have made lifestyle changes," says Lyn, a meetings member. "I just keep at it. I continue to see slow progress but overall a great deal of success. Slowly but surely the weight comes off."

It's that kind of "through thick and thin" attitude that will take people from thick to thin for good, says Mandel. Losing weight slowly isn't just healthier, she says, it's a better investment. Not only are you dropping pounds, you're working on building habits that you'll be able to maintain. And those habits will help you maintain the weight you lost, so you can stay at your goal weight for good.

"Plus, you have more energy to live life in the present, because you're not starving and focusing on food," says Mandel. "You're creating a healthy relationship with food." That's the key to lifelong success.
Lifelong success - yes, that's what we're after.

So as far as exercise goes I went to the gym today and did the bike. I decided I was ready to try Level 3 and it was a great success! I came up with a new RPM scheme. I do the random program on the bike and Level 3 goes anywhere from Level 1 up to Level 8. Here's my plan:

Levels 1-2: RPM 100+
Levels 3-4: Optional between 90-100+ depending on how I feel
Levels 5-6: RPM 90+
Levels 7-8: RPM 80+

How's that sound? That's what I did today and it worked out well - kept me working hard but not too hard. After 25 minutes on the bike I did strength training, back and biceps. I mixed in core work as usual. I felt like a champ when I was done. Sometimes I wish I could go to the gym twice a day, once in the morning and once in the evening. I think I'm getting addicted to the post-gym high.

Finally - I'm thinking a header change is in order. As much as I love that picture of me standing in the lake after my triathlon I feel like it's not accurate. It's not me now. I will be keeping an eye out for a good web header picture.

Well, Happy Monday folks - I hope you all have a fabulous week!! Thank you for cheering me on this past month, it both means a lot AND helps a lot.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Ahhh, The Weekend

It's Sunday night. Bummer. But it's been a decent weekend. I went to the gym on Saturday morning. I did the bike and then chest and triceps. Gosh, I can't even remember if the bike was hard or easy. My mind these days, it's why I need to blog daily if I want to keep up with myself. Anyway, I left the gym and immediately picked up the kids to hit the park for playgroup. It was so fun! I played soccer with Marek and some other kids for quite a while and I had plenty of energy. This is exactly why I want to be in shape. I had to run after the ball a few times and I had no problems. The main thing was my attitude, in years (and maybe even some not so distant months) past I would have begrudgingly played soccer out of some motherly duty but this was pure fun! And with having a couple kids in my late, late 30's I better stay in shape if I want to keep up with them for the long haul.

After the park I had a lunch date with my mother's club and ate way too much, a Caesar salad with a sausage and mushroom individual pizza. I did order water to drink! But the major calorie spendage was at dinner. Miguel and I had a date night (Thanks Erica!) out to dinner and a movie. Dinner included two glasses of wine, a shared tempura fried calamari, shared cup of clam chowder, bread and butter, shared 32oz! rib eye steak (we couldn't even finish it) and my own baked potato with butter, sour cream and bacon (which I did finish). For desert (oh yes, we had desert!) we ordered crème brûlée. Bam! Somehow it sounds a lot worse now that I'm writing it down. Anyway, it was really all very good and I'd probably do it again so no regrets there.

Unfortunately I can't say the same thing about the movie. Harry Potter. I tried very hard to talk Miguel into seeing Tabloid but he wouldn't go for it. Let's just say he owes me big time, those Harry Potter movies bore the heck out of me! I feel like once I saw the first, what, 15?, I've seen them all. Ugh, I'm so glad that's over. I tried to sleep during the movie but it was too darned loud. It got out at 12:15am and I was exhausted!

Today, Sunday, we had a long morning at home. I did my best to eat sparingly in an attempt to balance last nights bacchanalia of eating. I finally got to the gym in the late afternoon and I was very ready to exercise. Turns out I was legitimately PMSing on Friday and today I was sensitive and easily irritated all morning so I really needed to burn some calories. I hit the gym and did c25k Week 3/Day 1. The two 3-minute runs were a challenge but I probably could have run a bit further if I had to. Coupled with the two 90-second runs the whole thing felt very manageable. I think I'm going to like this Week 3 interval routine. After that I had legs and shoulders. I found out I wasn't stretching far enough in my lunges so I stretched more and that made them a bit better, but not good enough to do more than 1 set. Squats, calf raises, and I finally flipped the Bosu over for my shoulder work and stood on it with the ball side down! Balancing while lifting weights is fun, adds another element to the whole thing.

But the kick ass part was, after all that, I got on the bike and did Level 2 for thirty minutes! It was a middle of the road difficulty ("random" really is random) so I pushed myself. Normally I strive to keep my rpm's above 90 but today on some of the easier intervals I kept it above 100. I finished up totally soaked in sweat and feeling beat but quite pleased with myself. All in all I burned 700 calories in an hour and 15 minutes. I know that will help balance out the baked potato at least :) Oh and my attitude was a heck of a lot better than when I walked in.

News flash: Exercise helps turn around bad attitudes.

Well, I'm off to bed. I wanted to post some pictures comparing my current self to my 233.8 pound self but I'm too tired. Maybe next time. Night all!!