Sunday, December 22, 2013

Reboot? Restart? Rewind?

It feels good to let my finger do the talking once again.  Hey readers.  I sure did take a leave of absence, didn't I?  I also feel I lost myself in the process.  After my mid-week meltdown, I've been doing a lot of self-reflection thinking about where I derailed.  It wasn't any event or circumstance that caused it.  It's really just plain old complacency and laziness, with a dash of arrogance.
Complacent. Webster defines complacent as "satisfied with how things are and not wanting to change them."  I'd say that was true.  I remember saying to myself over the last few months, "I'd be happy if I stay just how I am right now."  I don't think I truly believed that, but that was what I was telling myself.
Lazy, defined as "disinclined to activity or exertion : not energetic or vigorous."  I'd agree with that.  Sure, I still worked out more days during the week than not, but sometimes I wasn't feeling it so I wasn't as energetic as I could be.  I was lazy or mind and spirit if I think of how many times I should have recorded what I ate or paid attention to what I was eating.  I was so tired of tracking my food, and I really didn't want to discipline myself to continue so I let it go.  Lazy. You bet.
Arrogance. "An insulting way of thinking or behaving that comes from believing that you are better, smarter, or more important than other people."  I'd say I was more arrogant in thinking that I was untouchable, and I had this weight thing beat.  It couldn't creep back up on me anymore.  I also remember thinking that as long as I worked out, I could eat anything I wanted.  Calories in = calories out results in keeping a constant weight.  So, if I just exercised, I could eat what I wanted.  45 pounds later I realize it really doesn't work that way.  I don't care what you do, if you eat 4 pounds of straight up sugar in a week, no amount of activity will make that go away.
Melt down commenced.  Analyzing done.  Reboot.  Restart. Rewind?
No. I'm not looking at it that way.  It's good that it happened.  I can't go back in time for a redo.  I'm not restarting all over again and reboot isn't quite right either.  I'm going to remember what I did to get myself in this position, and move on.
I'm going to go back to what worked before.  Counting calories, which helps me keep track of what I'm eating.  However, prepackaged foods are out.  They contain a lot of preservatives, hidden sugars, and salt.  Instead, I'm going to create my own healthy meals from scratch.
Activity will remain the same.  Kettlebells are still my favorite so that will continue, as will Zumba.  I'll admit I'm struggling with both right now due to the added weight, but I hope to gain my mobility back soon. 
Candy.  Can't do it.  I can't do moderation.  It just doesn't work for me. It's been four days since I've eaten candy, and I'm going to keep counting those days.  Candy is my weakness, straight up, no-holds-bared sugar.  I need to keep it away, and I've told my family, friends, and loved ones to help me with this.  I also realize that my idle time is very dangerous.  Idle time is where I binge.  So, I must keep my hands busy.  After dinner, I must keep myself occupied.  Prayer and reflection.  Cross-stitching.  Watching TV with family.  Anything to keep me occupied and my hands busy.  Hot beverages also help so I'm going to use that as well.  Idle hands are a candy playground, so these hands will be busy.
Lastly, new goals.  When I first started, I figured 160 pounds was my perfect weight.  I'm not so sure anymore.  At this point, I just want to be healthy, strong, and under 200 pounds by the end of the year.  So, my goals for 2014 will reflect this.  Here they are in no particular order.
  1. There WILL be a number "1" leading my weight at the end of 2014. 
  2. Deadlift 300 pounds.
  3. Perform 10 switch snatches continuously with a 50 pound kettlebell.
  4. Run a 5K without stopping and under 40 minutes.
  5. Perform one pull up.
I'm confident that I can complete 4 out of 5 of these fitness achievements.  That pull up will be the most challenging, but I'm still going to attempt them.  As I complete each one, I will share them with you.  Plus, I'm definitely looking for another Tiffany charm.  I certainly haven't forgotten about those little tokens of goodness!
I also challenge all of you to think of some fitness goals you'd like to accomplish by the end of 2014.  No, I'm not talking resolutions. I'm talking goal-setting.  Be realistic and challenge yourself.  Take yourself out of your comfort zone.  Share them with others.  All of you have been such a tremendous source of support for me, and I want to return the favor. 
We can make 2014 the best year ever for all of us.  The Dog Days are Over.  Keep Calm.  Move On!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Mirror

I know we've all experienced hardships that have truly tested us.  I've wondered what is that catalyst that causes one to make changes, hopefully for the better.  I'd like to think I've experienced a few of those moments of clarity.  Where everything seems so sharp, you can see it right in front of you.  You can touch it.  You want to make those changes, and create a better quality of life. 

So you make that change.  You educate yourself, and make a plan.  You follow that plan to the tee, vary rarely deviate.  You start to see how the positive changes are impacting you.  It's working.  People notice the change.  You're pleased.  You're successful.  And you move forward, working toward you goals.

And then one day it stops.  It all stops.

You don't see the changes anymore.  You work so hard to keep the momentum going, and you continue to go nowhere. You fight so hard, and you hardly see any results.  You tell yourself to keep going, keep pushing.  And you don't see anything. 

The clarity leaves. The sharpness fades.  It disappears.

Suddenly, you start to see changes again, but these changes aren't so positive.  It's little things at first.  Getting winded going up two flights of stairs when it wasn't an issue before.  Your arms feel funny when resting at your sides because your stomach is bigger.  Clothes don't fit right any more.

And then you look in the mirror and see a face that's starting to resemble someone you swore you'd never see again.

That's what my life has been like since May of this year.  It came to a head today.  It was a shitty day.  I can tell you that much.

I'm scared.  I'm so scared.  I don't want to go back to that lonely, sad woman who felt like she didn't have a life.  I can see myself getting back to that, and I'm so scared.  I'm acknowledging habits that will take me back there.  Closet binge eating.  Yes, that right.  $40 worth of Jelly Bellies in ONE WEEK.  All gone.  Three pound bags of Hot Tamales eaten over two to three days.  Yes, that right.  So, today I said to myself, "Let's go shopping for some new jeans so you can be more comfortable."  Why?  Because my pants are too tight.

And then I realized what I was doing, and I remember a time when I was gaining weight many years ago after getting off the low carb diet.  I went and bought two new pairs of jeans in larger sizes because my pants weren't fitting anymore.  That was the day that I accepted that I was gaining my weight back, and it was ok.

And it's not ok. It's NOT. It's completely unacceptable.

I knew what was happening.  I saw it in the mirror everyday.  I saw it in my clothes that didn't fit like they used to.  I was stressing today because it was the last day of my kettlebell class in our fall session, and we had our assessment.  I was scared.  I  knew I was going to do badly. I was afraid of what it would be like.  I know I haven't been able to keep up in my Zumba classes recently because I've gotten heavier.  Now that assessment is looking me in the face, and I have to try to beat my rep from the beginning of the quarter. 

So I look at my assessment sheet and see all those numbers.  Those reps I needed to beat.  My vision got blurry.  I'm hiding the tears that start streaming down my face as I look at the sheet on the floor.  I start warming up, and I'm trying to breathe and I can't.  Tears start flowing more freely.  After warming up, we start the assessment.  I need to beat 36 kettlebell swings in one minute using a 45# bell.  I do five.  My heart is pounding.  I'm crying.  I can't breathe and I feel like I'm going to vomit.

I leave class.  I've never left kettlebell class.  EVER!  I go into the locker room and cry my eyes out in a shower stall.  I sat there and cried.  I wanted to go back and finish, and I couldn't.  I was so scared. 
I couldn't do it.  So I left.

I think about those jeans.  If I had bought those jeans, it meant that I was done.  And I'm not done.  I have so much more to do. Why am I closet binge eating?  Hell if I know!  I'm the happiest I've ever been in my life. That's what makes this so difficult.  These is nothing that drove me to this point.  It's just me.

I have an eating disorder.  I will ALWAYS have a eating disorder.  It will never go away, but it can be managed.  I've become complacent, and when that happens, poor habits creep back in.  I have no excuse for what I've been doing, and that's what hurts so much.  I'm so disappointed in myself.  I feel like I've accomplished absolutely nothing this year, and it's terribly unsettling.  Believe me, I'm not looking for pity or condolences or back pats. I've always been 100% honest with you, and I will continue to be that way.  First step is admitting what I've done.  Second step is doing something about it.

So what am I going to do?  I'm going to put it behind me and move forward. I'm going to start blogging again and recording my food intake.  I'm going to make myself accountable again.  It's a huge risk, but this entire journey is a risk.  I must remain accountable. 

I want to send a special thanks out to M.C, my boo, my mom and my sis.  I needed your words of encouragement, reality and yes, even anger and frustration. Duly noted.