Monday, February 27, 2012

The Golden Ticket of Weight Loss

The Secret to Loving Your Body Isn't Losing Weight

A friend shared this link with a group of us on Facebook and it really struck a chord with me. After leaving long, rambling comments about it, I realized a blog post should be dedicated to my thoughts on the subject.

The article has some very true points. We do think things like, "if I could just lose 20 lbs [insert guy's name here] may notice me." Or, "If I can just lose 50 lbs I'll be happy with my body just the way it is."

We as human beings aren't satisfied with what we have or are. We continuously try to "better" ourselves. Whether it's for personal accomplishment or for vanity, there is always something we want more of - more weight to be lost or another rung on the corporate ladder to climb, it's always something.

I feel a little out of the norm, but at my heaviest I never had terrible, life consuming thoughts about how horrible my body was. Of course I hated being morbidly obese. It was uncomfortable. I missed out on a lot of things. But I always accepted it as how I was and didn't dwell on a guy not liking me or being passed up for a promotion because of my size. Of course I had moments where I was depressed about my size, but overall I didn't stress about it on a regular basis.

Now though, now I feel like my insecurity about my body is worse. What, the what? Yeah, it makes no sense. Girl loses 115 pounds. Girl gets more insecure.

I'd like to point out here that perhaps the reason I have the tendency to be MORE insecure is that I wasn't really living all that much life at 355 lbs. I hid behind my weight and the angry, tough girl persona I took on. (This could be a whole blog post all in itself).

The article is right - weight loss is no golden ticket to happiness. You have to choose that on your own. BUT I do not agree with this loaded statement:
"You may have lost weight—and that's great for a lot of reasons—but you are likely the same person with the same outlook, same personality, same level of overall happiness."
I'm challenging this statement with my own bold statement: I am NOT the same person I was 115 lbs ago - or even 90 lbs ago. I also have a completely different outlook and I KNOW my (actual) happiness level is way higher than it was when I was 355 lbs (or 329).

I'm not saying "I lost 115 lbs and now my life is all flowers and butterflies." There are a lot of things that are HARDER now (Read: learning how to deal with new found attention from the opposite sex). But overall I am a happier and more content person than I was as a morbidly obese 20-something and to say I am the same person I was at that point in my life doesn't give credit to how much growth we have to do as we lose a significant amount of weight.

The final point of the article - that exercise breeds confidence - I do agree with. The fact that I could go out yesterday and run 9 miles? THAT definitely makes me confident that I can do anything I put my mind to and gives me a feeling to WANT to take care of myself.

If I never lose another pound? I'll figure out how to accept and love my body. But if I were to stop exercising regularly? There is nothing that could replace the confidence I feel from a good workout.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Weigh in - continuing in the right direction

Last Week's weight - 237.6

This Week's weight - 236.8

0.8 lbs lost

92.6 lbs lost since June 2010

A loss! I'm not even going to complain that it was less than a pound. The important part is that I lost 2 weeks in a row and I feel like I'm solidly in the the 230s. And something feels different about it this time. I don't feel this urge to go out and splurge on french fries and pizza today. I have a fridge full of healthy food to make healthy meals for the week so I feel a re-commitment to this weight loss thing coming on.

I'm officially .4 lbs away from the Garmin Goal I made. Yeah, remember that old thing? Think I forgot about it? Well, I didn't. I may have already gotten the Garmin for my birthday, but the fact I never reached that goal has been bothering me. I don't like making goals I don't accomplish. So, next week I plan to accomplish it a over 6 months after I original made it. Yikes! That hurts.

I'm also 7.4 lbs away from my 100 lb loss since starting the blog. I know I can accomplish this by the end of March. Let's make it happen.

I feel refocused and I hope next weigh in I'm not eating my words.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Getting By

I'm not going to even mention how much of a shitty blogger I feel like. Not only do I never post, but I am also just continuing to maintain and not lose any weight. (Wait, this was me mentioning it, wasn't it?)

The one thing I've been pretty consistent with is sticking with my half marathon training runs. Sure, I've skipped a could mid-week runs over the last few weeks, but by and far I'm where I need to be 9 weeks before the race.

Today I logged 9 miles.

It took me 2:07:30 - so I'm continuing to balance out my pace at 14 minute miles. I'm ok with this pace since the goal for the race in April is just to finish and not hate it.

The run today was pretty good. The first mile wasn't painful like it usually is, but around mile 2.5 I started to get some cramping in my left side. I think my breakfast may have been too heavy - live and learn!

Miles 3-7 were pretty nondescript. The course I chose today is a very familiar one. One I run all the time, but it has a couple bigger hills and a few rolling hills.

I didn't take any shot bloks until mile 6 - about 1:18 in. I know I should have taken them a bit sooner, but with my previous stomach cramps I didn't want to upset my stomach. They didn't and with plenty of water it was fine, but around mile 7 I hit a wall. I took an extra walk interval before finishing up my last 3 running intervals at .20/.25, .50/.25, and .50/cooldown.

We are 9 weeks from race day. I have time to take it slow building my mileage so my next several weeks of long runs will probably look something like this:

Week 1: 7 miles
Week 2: 10 miles
Week 3: 7 or 8 miles
Week 4: 11 miles
Week 5: 7 or 8 miles
Week 6: 12 miles
Week 7: 8 miles
Week 8: 6 miles - taper
Week 9: Race day

My next order of business is to get refitted for new running shoes. I have been wearing the same model of Brooks Defyance (I've had SEVERAL new pairs of this same shoe) since early 2009. Three years and well over 90 lbs ago! I'm sure my weight loss has changed the way I run/walk and my shoes were originally fitted for walking.

I also need to pick out a swim suit to begin triathlon training in and join the Y. Why are endurance sports so expensive!?!

So I'm still here - I may not be doing great at blogging or nutrition, but at least I am still trucking with staying on task with something!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Weigh in - 4.2 Loss

Last Week's weight - 241.8

This Week's weight - 237.6

4.2 lbs lost

91.8 lbs lost since June 2010

Honestly, this may just be from dehydration from drinking last night, but I'll take it. The scale was down as low as 235 earlier in the week. Not sure how, but something I did must've worked this week.

I'll try not to screw it up.

Monday, February 13, 2012

What's Next For Me?

It's not a secret I've been struggling with losing weight lately. And by lately, I mean since October which is when I got down to around 241 and then proceeded to gain and lose the same 2 pounds over and over and over.

But through the roller coaster, I've continued to exercise 3-4 times a week. Even the week after the half marathon last month, I made it to the gym twice. At this point, my exercise routine is just that, very routine. And I love that. As I was running my 8 miles yesterday, I realized I may weigh the same as I did 4 months ago, but I AM FIT. I can run 8 miles. I can do a 60 minute yoga class. I can ride my bike 10 miles at a time. And pretty soon, I will find out if I can swim.

I like goals to keep me on task. Even though my exercise routine is second nature at this point, if I don't have something to work towards I start to skip workouts.

So I signed up for my 4th half marathon.

Yep, I am crazy. There is a big Rock n Roll race in Nashville every April. This is the event I did my first half marathon at and hated it. Hate. Hate. Hate. So, I have a lot of anxiety and negative feelings towards this race. The hills are unforgiving on this course and the weather in Nashville can be brutal (it was 85 and sunny when I did it 3 years ago and 2 years ago there were severe storms and they had to cut off the marathon). But I am going to conquer it this year.

But there's more...

For awhile now, I've wanted to change up the half marathon running. It just gets to be monotonous to keep training and running 13.1 miles in my book. SO - after a Twitter conversation with Skinny Emmie, I picked up Slow, Fat Triathlete and was sold on doing a sprint triathlon this summer.

A sprint triathlon is usually about a 1/2 mile swim (750 yards), 12.5 mile (20K) bike ride, and 3.1 mile (5K) run. And I plan to do this in 2012.

I am targeting the Innsbrook, MO Octomax Triathlon on June 23, 2012.

Which, would mean serious triathlon training would begin at the end of March so for four weeks between the end of March and the end of April I will be training for both a half marathon AND sprint triathlon AT THE SAME TIME.

I feel a little crazy, but invigorated. It's a new challenge, it's something I've never done before, and it's exciting. It is also majorly scary because these thoughts are going through my mind:

- I haven't even gotten in a pool to swim laps in 20 years.
- I've never ridden more than 10 miles on my bike at once.
- I don't own a road bike.
- I have no idea what to wear.

But I will figure it out, because I want to be a triathlete!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Weigh in - gaining again

Last Week's weight - 239.8

This Week's weight - 241.8

2 lb gain

87.6 lbs lost since June 2010

Yeah, the "gain/lose the same 2 pounds" saga continues...I'm too tired tonight to really dissect what is going on. It has been a full weekend: dinner/South Pacific after work Friday, 3 mile run Sat AM, friend's baby's 1st birthday party on Sat, date / show on Sat night (up till 2 AM), 8 mile run today, grocery shopping, laundry, ugh-I'm-tired.

I'll try to update tomorrow.

Monday, February 6, 2012

A NSV - My First Massage

This may seem like a weird thing to classify as a NSV, but at 355 lbs - or even 329 (where I was when I started this blog) - I would NEVER have thought to get naked and layout on a table covered with a sheet as a stranger methodically relaxes all the muscles in my body with their hands.

Yeah, creepy, right?

But actually, it was fabulous.

I don't talk about body image issues enough here, I guess because I try not to focus on mine. But everyone has them and I feel like my love/hate relationship with my body is no worse or better then normal. I actually feel like I put more body image pressure on myself since losing weight. It's a weird effect of weight loss, but something I have noticed over the last few months.

Anyway, any professional massage therapist is going to be just that - professional and it really lessened any self-consciousness feeling I had about this stranger seeing all my imperfections.

My massage therapist was wonderful - he knew it was my first massage and was very professional and explained everything to me before the session and even interjected some information on what he was planning on doing as he worked. He allowed me to decide whether to leave on my underthings or have them come off and ultimately I decided to dive in and everything came off. I think you get a better quality massage that way because they don't have to awkwardly work around clothing.

Overall, it was a great experience and I'd recommend it to anyone who puts in a great deal of exercise stress on their body or for people who sit at a desk for 8 hours a day. I will definitely be going back to get one after my next half marathon!

This crosses off another item from my 101 in 1001 list.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Weigh in - still in the 230s

Last Week's weight - 239.8

This Week's weight - 239.8

No gain / no loss

89.6 lbs lost since June 2010

I'll take it. After several cupcakes, 2 happy hours, cookies, and pizza this week, I'm actually surprised there wasn't a gain.

Funny how the week before, I had all my meals planned out and this passed week I didn't and I failed.

Funny isn't it?

My goal for this week is to plan my meals, get enough water each day and to not skip any workouts (I skipped Thursday last wee for happy hour).

Pretty simple, but when it comes down to it weight loss isn't rocket science.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: Discipline