CALLIKIA   23,798
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TIKI Blast Week!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Alright y'all. I've focused too much on what I haven't done and what isn't happening. This week it's about the stuff below and about focusing on the amazing crap I've accomplished all summer - spurred on by my TIKI-mates, spurred on by my amazing SparkFriends old and new, spurred on by my own pure will and determination. I'm going to remember how much of an animal I am this week, how much I've done, and how the sky is totally the limit here! I've got more in me so I'm reaching in to grab it, and being nice to myself along the way!

Today I went for a walk at lunch. I didn't worry about distance or speed really. I just walked. And by the time I was almost back to the office I had this thought, "I *LOVE* my legs right now!" I can feel the strength and power within them, which is without a doubt from this training I've put myself through. I walked a mile today at lunch. I had a blast. I loved myself. I loved the wonderful cool breeze. I loved the old buildings I walked past. I loved that I wasn't sweating and breathing uncontrollably! It's amazing when you stop to realize - Wow! I'm doing great! And I've still got so much more I can do! I can't WAIT to see what I accomplish next, what happens to improve my life because I took the effort to make it happen! I totally rock!

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~*~ TIKI Challenge BLAST-WEEK 8/23-8/29 ~*~
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Since my last TIKI check in, I am proud to announce that I WALKED 5 MILES JUST UNDER A 20 MIN/MILE PACE!!






The three excuses that I will BANISH from my life for this week are:
1. It's too hard.
2. There's no time.
3. I've done enough.

My plan this week is:

emoticon Cardio: Gym 5/7 days at least, 2-5-6 miles training without excuses, elliptical, Zumba, boxing and rowing - all while engaging my core!

emoticon Strength Training: ST 3 times this week, even if I have to do it on my own at lunch time. Try to beat my 30 second plank time and see how close I can get to a minute! Start testing myself with push-ups. Up the crunches to 100 per day...easily doable.

emoticon Flexibility: Continue to use my Yoga moves to work in my stretching routine, and try a few more/new moves. Stretch at least 15 minutes following a full workout and take 5 minute stretch breaks in between machines for a cardio flexibility boost.

emoticon Rest and Love: I will reconnect with nature again because I can feel, smell and taste my favorite season approaching. I will get a photo shoot in sometime this weekend with my boys in the great outdoors!

emoticon Nutrition: I will use the plan I made this weekend and eat my prepackaged homemade meals for lunches and some dinners. And when the supply ends, I will go back to my list and remind myself what else we have. The goal is to really use the food we bought and not buy more or end up going out every night!

I have been working hard all summer, but I refuse to go out with anything less than a BANG! -- Hells to the YEAH!



I am AN ANIMAL, hear me ROAR!

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BOGUSANNIE 8/25/2010 11:39AM

    woohoo...such positivity!!! GREAT!

congrats on the plank...they are my fave...I love to hate them!

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YOOVIE 8/24/2010 11:07AM

    ther eyou go!!!

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SPUNKYDUCKY 8/23/2010 4:58PM

    Congratulations on your positive attitude and ability to focus on what is going well and what you like. I love that you are feeling so strong - that is an awesome feeling!

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CHICAT63 8/23/2010 4:31PM

    Hear me roar, I am a woman on a mission !!!! And in this corner we have Calikkia (a.k.a Esther) who is one determined, dedicated Tikimate to be reckoned with. emoticon Way to go, you can do this.

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CUATROMOMMY 8/23/2010 4:06PM

    Oh my are amazing.

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RAVENSONG37 8/23/2010 3:32PM

    Way to go!

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DLEE27 8/23/2010 3:26PM

    Whoop whoop!!!!!

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What is this Lifestyle Change?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Today I woke up and had my very own version of the "sexy" breakfast that YOOVIE always talks about. I don't normally call it a "sexy" breakfast more than I call it a "calm, destressing breakfast" that prepares me for my day more than my former routine (wake up late, shower, dress, grab McD's and eat in the car on the way to work).

I set my alarm for 5am, yes. But I needed more sleep than that, so I took an hour nap (*lol*) before being woken up by pancakes in my face. (*love* me some Hubs!) As he asked if I was getting out of bed soon (as he wanted to get in...he worked all night) I said, "No! I'm eating right here in bed." Two bites later I realized I was missing my morning routine. I grabbed my pancakes and went out to watch my Angel reruns and sip some coffee (and add some bananas to my pancakes, because I just can't have pancakes without some sort of fruit). Halfway into the pancakes I was full (*shhh* ...he made too much ...he made an 'old Esther' serving of pancakes) and set the rest aside to enjoy my show and my coffee for a few minutes. I thought about waking the kids, but they have little to get ready in the morning and I thought I would wait until I went back for my shower at 6:30am.

I spent the next 15 minutes or so with myself. I logged on to check my SparkPage once, but then I closed up the laptop and just sat back and enjoyed the silence that is the morning.

I actually started having "one of those" mornings after the boys woke up. I couldn't find my belt. The only shirt I could find was the one that's too big and I don't much care for. I spilled almost my entire water bottle in my work bag. I spilled my coffee right on the boob of my shirt. (EDIT: I also forgot my cell phone at home, which is also my iPod for the gym, as well as a paper I needed for today at work.) I just shook my head, considered going back to bed for like a second, packed up my healthy lunch and snacks, and headed off to work - kissing my boys goodbye first and telling them to have a good day.

It wasn't until about 15 minutes ago (it's almost 10am now) that I realized that every misstep this morning that could've (and, in the past, would've) thrown me off just...didn't. And why? Because this whole "lifestyle change" nonsense? It's not really nonsense after all. This whole "exercise makes you happy" crap? Yea, it's not really crap either. And that "sexy" and/or "calm, destressing breakfast" really does help start my morning right. I got through several things that could've ruined my day because I'm better adapted to handling the stress. I can roll with the punches better than I ever did before.

And as I ate my snack of greek yogurt with strawberry freezer jam (homemade) and granola I thought about how much my life has changed in just four short months...

This "lifestyle change" they talk about doesn't take you from overeating, couch potato, TV-loving slob one day to overly active, never home, hiking mountains, granola vegan-eating, race winning, no TVs in the house health nut the next. Sorry, it doesn't work that way. It's a gradual change from the person you've settled into being to the person you always wanted to be.

It starts really small. For me it started with stopping my morning McDonald's addiction. It started with getting up a little earlier (like 2-5 minutes earlier) each day until I found the right time to get in my rest time before I had to start my day. It started with a cheese omelet and a slice of wheat bread. Every morning I had the same breakfast because I wasn't sure of my abilities and I was sure of my one choice - my egg and cheese omelet measured out (1/2 cup of egg beaters, 1/4 cup of shredded cheddar). (Lately I've added wheat bagels and cream cheese or peanut butter -- or Fiber One Pancakes if I can swing it have a little extra time (or Hubs surprises me).)

As time has progressed I've gotten used to my morning much so that even though I tried to resist it this morning and eat in bed, I just couldn't. I needed my routine! And while I'm not saying that eating pancakes in front of the TV while drinking creamer-laden coffee is "healthy" per's better than what I was doing three months ago. And this small change, this morning routine, even though it doesn't include a morning run like I'd love for it to, even though it's just about silence and centering before the chaos of the day commences, helped me get through the crazy that followed.

I'm looking forward to more changes as they come, but for now I've got down a much better morning routine, I have a gym routine following a long work day that's seemingly solid most days, my daily eating works like clockwork and my mind feels calm a lot more these days. For me, that's a huge lifestyle change from the stressed out, overworked, underpaid, unappreciated, suffering, surviving, barely breathing, pulling her hair out woman that stumbled upon Spark 4 months ago.

My lifestyle may not be the poster child for healthy living yet, but it sure has changed! Has yours??

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KITHKINCAID 8/25/2010 6:53PM

    Yep - mine has changed for sure as well. I'm still working on my mornings (they seem to be the toughest past for me) but I love that "sexy" breakfast. I'm much better at "sexy" lunches and dinners right now, but your day just sounded so great I think I might try it! (Belt losing and coffee spilling aside). I find it hard to admit to myself sometimes that I really enjoy all the things I swore I wouldn't - but I'm owning that embarrassment too. So what if I said I'd never enjoy exercise? I am now, and that's what matters.

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BOGUSANNIE 8/25/2010 11:36AM

    Baby steps...VERY important aren't they!
good for you for not getting derailed!

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GETFIT2LIVE 8/24/2010 11:42AM

    Funny how making one small change can lead to another and another and another until you realize that your lifestyle has been slowly transforming, isn't it? You are doing AWESOME, beautiful, and you are going to keep on rocking this!

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_DASH_ 8/23/2010 11:19PM

    this is a fantastically reflective blog!!! look at how much progress you are making! simply amazing to stop and reflect on it all. i love your wisdom and honesty and PATIENCE with how things come about. you have so many good reminders to all of us in this blog and i love it because it works for YOU. :D keep up the GREAT work E!

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SASXONTHEMOVE 8/23/2010 9:29PM

    You are totally right! We used to eat out at least 3-4 times a month, now its maybe once a month (if at all). Plus my grocery cart looks so much healthier, as does my pantry and fridge. I also routine my day (having bells at school to let us know when snack and lunch are is great for that LOL) eating and working out. I get to school early and leave early so I can get my hour workout in before I make dinner for my family.

Positive lifestyle changes!!

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MESKIER 8/23/2010 5:59PM

    LOVE it. You are SO so so right about small changes. I tend to go gung-ho/all out and wear myself down easily in a hurry. Starting small leads to this "lifestyle" change. Thank you for sharing this.

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RAVENSONG37 8/23/2010 3:32PM

    I love love love this. You are totally right small step at a time. And don't underestimate that time for silence. It can be just as important as a morning run!!

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BECKYB73 8/23/2010 12:16PM

    I'm right there with you, Es. It's the small changes that really add up over time. I think I gave up my coffee first, when I realized I was adding like 300 calories of flavored creamer to it!

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ERIN1128 8/23/2010 11:45AM

    Woo hoo! The biggest change for me is rolling out of bed and exercising every really has become mandatory for me. I give myself one day a week off, and on that day, I always have to go get a second cup of coffee, LOL!

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BOURNBABE 8/23/2010 11:43AM

    emoticon emoticon

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FLWRCHLD97 8/23/2010 11:40AM

    yes, i've notices small changes do add up in the long run. if you try to change too much too soon, you are just setting yourself up for failure. thanks for posting on your progress! emoticon

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LIVE2SAVELIVES 8/23/2010 11:32AM

    WOW! Can't wait to start blogging about changes like this!!

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MERAINA 8/23/2010 11:05AM

I'm getting there. Werkin' it baby!
Keep on dancing girl! You go this!

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MAGPIE17 8/23/2010 10:35AM

    Way to go, Esther! I'm definitely eating at home more than I was, cut out caffeine almost entirely, and moving waaaay more than I was 1.5 years ago! Hooray for healthy lifestyle changes!

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Super Fantastical Sunday! - Week 18

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Okay, so I'm feigning excitement right now because while I want it to be fantastic, I'm just trying to remember everything I need to do in order to be successful this week. Yes, I'm going through the motions, because that's what I have to do. Fake it til you make it.

Weigh-In Day

Starting Weight: 466.6
SP SW: 416.2
Last Week: 362.8
This Week: 364.0
Loss/Gain: +1.2
SP Total Loss: 52.2
Total Loss: 102.6

Hence the stress and the faking it. Could be because my eating was off a few days this week. Could be because I ate out more than usual = high salt intake. Could be because I worked out hard and I never lose much when I push it like that until the next week. Could be a ton of things, but I'm trying to not worry about the why and just move on.

So for today the plan is simple. Clean and Cook. I've got a list of 4-5 meals I'm going to try to prep for this week. They include:

Chicken Fried Rice
Chicken Fingers with Baked Fries
Lentil Rice Casserole
Tator Tot Casserole (likely eaten today b/c the kids love it)
Slow Cooker Chicken Dinner

I've got the Chocolate Zucchini Bread in the fridge and everyone loves it, so it will make a nice sweet snack today.

I may have to head over to Wal-Mart to pick up a few more take out dishes so I can pack all this stuff up for the week.

All of these are either recipes I know work, or recipes I've found on SparkRecipes.

I'm trying to find stuff that's easy to make, easy to store, easy to reheat, etc. I also have on the list burgers and grilled corn, which can't be reheated and will just have to be made whatever night we choose.

Grocery shopping went well this week. We didn't have a list prepared so I stuck mostly to the outside of the store. I did pick up a bag of frozen chicken breasts because it's an easy fall back. Also picked up some lettuce for a big salad sometime this week. I got some frozen veggies and frozen fruits as other fall backs for smoothies and sides. With coupons and discounts we spent about 100 bucks. My goal is to not spend more than 30 bucks this week on extras. That include meals out and anything I have to go back to the grocery store for (we're out of deli meat, which is important for our football game and practice days).

Exercise for the week planned:

Today - I'd like to take a break between cooking and cleaning to go for a walk or head to the park with the dog and the boys.

Monday - 2-3 miles, 15 minutes rowing, ST
Tuesday - Zumba
Wednesday - 5 miles, ST? (I have to figure out how to fit this in...maybe I'll have to go back to ST on my own midday)
Thursday - Zumba, 20 minutes boxing
Friday - elliptical (45 minutes?), ST, cleaning
Saturday - 6 miles

I did clean out some of my old (too big) clothes last night from my room. Some of these remained from my 466 days and it was time to really let them go. I've got them in a bag to head to Goodwill later today.

Pic of the day:

So I guess someone's happy about the shorts I can no longer get away with wearing because they're just too big. Mad Max thinks it's a great carrying pouch....

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BOURNBABE 8/23/2010 11:41AM

    Great plan. Love the kangaroo kitty pouch. lol.

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MAGPIE17 8/23/2010 9:36AM

    Hahahaha....I officially *love* your cat! That is an awesome picture!

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MERAINA 8/23/2010 9:32AM


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RAVENSONG37 8/23/2010 8:59AM

    You look positively tiny in this pic. I hope you see and feel what 102 pounds gone looks like!!! Esther, you are incredible from your head to your toes.

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CHICAT63 8/23/2010 7:13AM

    Excellent cooking plan ! emoticon on the shorts, yep time to go for sure. emoticon

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FATBUMBGONE 8/23/2010 2:00AM

    I love your blogs and am now a subscriber. Glad you were able to put your old clothes to use- funny pic!

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KITHKINCAID 8/23/2010 1:33AM

    Haha! Kangaroo Max - very funny.

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BOGUSANNIE 8/22/2010 10:47PM are doing so rock!
Max looks pretty laid back...great pic, thanks for posting it!

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PAPER_WINGS18 8/22/2010 9:40PM

    hahaa what a great pic! Congrats on the success!(and the ability to carry around a kitty in your pants! lol!)

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KARVY09 8/22/2010 9:08PM

    Love that friggin' pic!! HAHA!

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CALLIKIA 8/22/2010 8:13PM

    There's room for my other cat too but she'd kill me! *lol* Max doesn't care about anything...she loves to lay on people so she was just chillin' there.

Comment edited on: 8/22/2010 8:34:52 PM

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LUCYSUNFLOWER 8/22/2010 7:47PM

    OMG I love the picture! Hilarious! Love that there's room for both of you!

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EMRANA 8/22/2010 6:38PM

  Best photo of too big clothes I've seen on Spark! emoticon

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DLEE27 8/22/2010 2:26PM

    Ahahahaha! I love that picture! Too funny, and also WTG!!!

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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 8/22/2010 2:23PM

    When I say you are amazing and inspiring... I'm serious :)

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Where Has August Gone?

Saturday, August 21, 2010

So I was wondering today how on task I was with my August goals...I went back and checked and this is what I said on the first of this month:

So the plan for August? Keep at it. Work the nutrition goals you set for yourself in the beginning and get back on track with eating more fresh fruits and vegetables. Play time is over...time to work! (Though I can have fun doing it and then it feels a lot like play time.)

8/8 - 367
8/15 - 365
8/22 - 363
8/29 - 361

I'm so ready to see those 350s!

I, Esther, vow that today I am recommitting myself to the program I have set for myself. I will eat more healthy foods. I will cook at home instead of going out to eat. I will pick some fresh vegetables from my garden and enjoy the bounty the earth gives me. I will not let myself punish myself for missteps. I will learn and grow from the challenges I face in order to become a better, happier, healthier new me. I will stop focusing on the future of "the end" and start focusing on today and the here and now. I will ensure that my workouts benefit my heart and my soul. I will learn something new this month to add to my list of healthy activities. I will challenge myself to do better and allow myself the time to rest now and again. I will realize that I am not perfect and I could never try to be. Sometimes I will fall, but I will get back up again. I will not let the scale control my actions today or any day. I will remember that in life there is no scale following me around announcing my weight to those I meet. I am my own ambassador. A smile on my face and confidence in my step will show them that I am a strong, powerful woman who takes care of herself body, mind, and spirit. I will remember that by taking care of myself I am teaching my children healthy habits. And I will enjoy having my kids with me on active outings once again. I am recommitting myself to this process because it makes me feel like I can conquer the world. It makes me feel strong and wise and gives my heart the fullness it needs. I promise this to myself.


Now, let's see...this is what I've done so far as far as weight:

8/8 - 365.2
8/15 - 362.8

So it seems I've been under my goals so far. I have no clue what the scale will say tomorrow...all week it's been up and down (mostly up).

So what if I gain tomorrow?

No, really...what if? My eating has been a little erratic this week, and my exercise has been insane this week. I missed 2 ST sessions this week due to intense cardio session and/or the need to be at home with my boys. My body is sore. My knee went out in bed on Thursday, but it went right back in and I was good again. Today it's sore so even though I'm supposed to walk 6 miles, I know it's best to just rest it today and let it heal correctly. I'll focus on my son's game today. If I feel good I'll walk around the field when my son isn't playing. So IF I gain or maintain tomorrow, I'll just keep going anyways. Crap happens, and I have plenty of accomplishments to be proud of this week.

As far today is concerned, I'm in the middle of cooking a batch of Chocolate Zucchini Bread. I'll let you know how it goes. Sounds yum, though! (Just waiting on Hubs to get back from borrowing vanilla from the MIL.) In a couple hours we'll be headed to Parkersburg for Ethan's first game. They keep moving him around and there's talk that he'll be on both first string and second string as a guard, the other as center. He's excited and so am I!

So, one more full week of August. Time to show myself the discipline in eating I've learned over the past four months and send the summer out in high-style! I seriously can't wait to see (and then beat) the 350s.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LOOKY-LOU 8/22/2010 11:52AM

    Setting goals is fantastic, but falling downa and getting back up...well that is SUCESS!!

You can do this! You will see and beat the 350's, you just gotta remember to get back up! emoticon

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ERIN4771 8/22/2010 9:47AM

    rest is definitely key!! you will get to the 350's, no worries!! keep up the great work, and let us know how the chocolate zucchini bread turns out...sounds interesting!!

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KITHKINCAID 8/22/2010 1:23AM

    Fingers crossed for you girl! You deserve it!

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BAYBELIEVER 8/21/2010 10:29PM

    Almost there (to the 350s)! But look at how much you have accomplished! So, just know that it will come, if not tomorrow then soon! And yes, the rest is important! Listen to your body and let it know you care enough about it to take a day of rest when needed and eat some pretty awesome healthy foods.

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BEATLES34 8/21/2010 10:23PM

    you can doo it! good luck to ethan, too!

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-SHIMMER-ANN- 8/21/2010 6:44PM

    I'm so incredibly proud of you, you are such an inspiration!!!

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RAVENSONG37 8/21/2010 4:47PM

    mmmm...chocolate zucchini bread....mmmmmmmm....I'm comin over! No matter what the scale says tomorrow you will move forward. I know it and so do you. I hope you enjoy the game today and cheer a little louder for me!

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CHICAT63 8/21/2010 3:14PM

    You are having good results and you also need to rest at times, I know it's difficult but believe me it helps. You can still have an active " rest day ". Keep up the good work, you've got this ! Bring on the 250s and September. emoticon emoticon

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BOGUSANNIE 8/21/2010 2:45PM

    great job so are bringin' it lady!!!!

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DLEE27 8/21/2010 1:48PM

    Great month so far! You are rocking your goals!!!

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RRAYNER 8/21/2010 12:48PM

    August did really fly by and, alas, I did not fare as well as I would have liked to with regards to the scale.
I think now that school is starting (I'm a secretary at the school), discipline will set in. At least I hope so.
We can all relate to what you're going through.
Hang in there!
Rose emoticon

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SUGIRL06 8/21/2010 12:32PM

    Yes, sometimes you need to rest! I am glad you know that and don't push yourself to more pain! Feel better soon and keep up the great work!

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Is Pride a Drug?

Friday, August 20, 2010

So I'm at the gym peddling away on the recumbent bike and bored out of my mind. I think I hate the bike. It's boring. My feet get numb in that position. And I never feel like I'm pushing enough, sweating enough, accomplishing enough. But I know I'm burning calories, and I'm maintaining a 60-70 pace, so why am I so hung up on what I think isn't happening? And why does this feeling always seem to come a day or two after a huge accomplishment?

Yesterday I was sore but flying high emotionally. I had finally conquered my 5-miler, and I felt like I had done something brave and powerful. But I know I can't push like that every day. I can't conquer myself each and every day or I'll burn out or overdo it. Even Hubs commented yesterday that he thought my 5-miler was too soon, too fast while we were talking about how my body was so sore all day and I asked him what vitamins I could take to reduce the waste products brought about through the muscle tearing that happens in a work out. He looked at me, wondering why I needed such a quick fix, wondering why I couldn't just back off a little and let my body rest.

I know that I need to rest. I've done enough research on exercising and training and I know how important those rest periods are for repairing your muscles so they can continue to perform at their best. And I'm not necessarily looking for a quick fix for weight loss as I seem to be searching for a quick fix for muscle recovery so I can do it again, best myself, accomplish something. But as I was sitting there super bored I thought to myself, "OMG, is accomplishment a drug?" I'm a lot like an addict. My fixes are that pride in accomplishment...that feeling you get when you surprise yourself and do something you didn't think you really could. When I first started out my high lasted a long time, but more and more it only lasts a day or two. Not even 48 hours after my 5-miler accomplishment and I'm looking for my next fix.

I've heard a lot about how some food addicts end up switching that addiction for exercise, and a time or two I've even teased that I wish I could be one of those people because at least I'd be skinny. But I've been searching for balance, not addiction. I want to find a peace in my life. I don't want to be searching for any fix - food, exercise, drug or otherwise. If anything, I want to be high on life...So I'm worried...has pride become my drug???

Pride tends to be a dirty word in my mind. It's a selfish and egotistical word. Pride isn't good...isn't it one of the 7 Deadly Sins? OMG! ...that's what I kept telling myself.

Wikipedia says this:
Pride is, depending on the interactional and cultural context, either a high sense of one's personal status (i.e., leading to judgments of personality and character) or the specific mostly positive emotion that is a product of praise or independent self-reflection. Philosophers and social psychologists have noted that pride is a complex secondary emotion which requires the development of a sense of self and the mastery of relevant conceptual distinctions (e.g., that pride is distinct from happiness and joy) through language-based interaction with others[1]. Some social psychologists identify it as linked to a signal of high social status.[2] One definition of pride in the first sense comes from St. Augustine: "the love of one's own excellence".[3] In this sense, the opposite of pride is humility.

Pride is sometimes viewed as excessive or as a vice, sometimes as proper or as a virtue. While some philosophers such as Aristotle (and George Bernard Shaw) consider pride a profound virtue, most world religions consider it a sin.

According to the Concise Oxford Dictionary, proud comes from late Old English prut, probably from Old French prud "brave, valiant" (11th century) (which became preux in French), from Late Latin term prodis "useful", which is compared with the Latin prodesse "be of use".[4] The sense of "having a high opinion of oneself", not in French, may reflect the Anglo-Saxons' opinion of the Norman knights who called themselves "proud", like the French knights preux.[citation needed]

When viewed as a virtue, pride in one's appearance and abilities is known as virtuous pride, greatness of soul or magnanimity, but when viewed as a vice it is often termed vanity or vainglory.

For the past 24 or so years (I'm giving myself my early years, because we don't tend to criticize ourselves when we're super young) I've had humility shoved down my throat as a virtue. Be selfless. Do not be proud. Be a good loser. Don't be a sore winner. Show respect to your competitors. You aren't that good, that special. Don't think too highly of yourself. Don't get a big head. Don't be narcissistic. Be humble. Think of others, not yourself.

And I did that. For a long time I put myself last. For a long time I made sure my friends, family, kids, husband were happy, even if I didn't really feel happy at all. And I hated myself most days.

So maybe pride isn't such a bad thing. I'm realizing that people around me seem more happy with me when I'm happy. It's much easier to get along with those around me when I feel fulfilled, and for right now this training for a 10k is driving my ambition...but that doesn't mean it will always be that way. This "journey" we're all on is a narcissistic journey in itself. We spend a lot of time trying to change our appearance so we're constantly focused on what we look like, how we're getting fit, how our body is changing, etc.

But I'm still cautious. Is pride my drug right now?? I don't know...maybe. But I'm going to be more aware of this as I go and be proud of other accomplishments, like healing and rest days. I'm going to be proud that I'm giving my body the rest it needs and thank my muscles for healing so I can call upon them again soon. Maybe right now it's not about getting rid of my pride (because I'm starting to think that pride in one's self isn't as bad as all the stories and religions have made it out to be) but being proud of more than just my physical accomplishments.

What do you think? Are you chasing an exercise high? Do you experience down days when you have to hold back? Are you anxious to get to those challenge days?

Just for fun I've been going through some old pictures. Here's a picture of "skinny" Esther.

Age 4. Probably a picture for Easter. What the crap is up with the red sailor bow thing on that dress? Wow!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BOGUSANNIE 8/20/2010 10:40PM

    ahhhh, balance...when you find the it!!!

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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 8/20/2010 9:51PM

    Dude, get out of my head. Seriously. I'm having your week and I'm experiencing the same things.

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KITHKINCAID 8/20/2010 7:27PM

    This is a great blog Esther - speaks to a lot of the stuff I'm working on in my own therapy currently. I think you said it best though when you said you are seeking balance. That's the key word. Personally I have been riding waves of "highs" my whole life - what's the next big thing? This is dangerous thinking - because after you graduate, get a good job, travel, get married, and have kids, eventually you have to "settle down" and there are no more "big things" so you run out of things to look forward to - or at least I did. When you are happy with yourself and self-focused (not self-centered, self-focused) there's more balance, and you can be as happy with the lows as with the highs. It's not easy to work on, but I'm getting there - and gaining a lot of patience along the way. Many people in my life have commented about my sense of "calm" lately and how even-keel I seem. Funny that that has happened only since I started really focusing on myself and becoming what I always associated with being selfish. It's not selfish at all - it's recognizing that YOU and your own achievements and personal goals are THE MOST important thing you could possibly do. And no one can really fault you for that!

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RAVENSONG37 8/20/2010 6:33PM

    I think I had that same dress!! This is a great blog...I'm going to think about it some more...chew on it a little. I used to be addicted to the scale moving. I think I'm working on just being healthy but it's tempting. Maybe I'm more addicted to results (being that super-over-achiever and all...). I love how you make me think...even on a Friday!

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KATRIONAH 8/20/2010 5:13PM

    Pride...hmmm. Yep, we were taught not to be prideful. But....I think there is two kinds of pride. The one that says I am better than anyone else and phooey to the world. ( Obviously that is BAD PRIDE ) Then there is the kind of pride that says I want to do the best I can and by being a better me I might inspire others to be successful in their ventures too. That is Good pride.

So....I think pride can be okay. and.....really congratulations on your success's Have a great weekend.....Karen emoticon

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TEAM-SARAH 8/20/2010 3:18PM

    If the bike is boring then find something else, for sure! But remember, like you said, not every day should be super intense exercise. You need those recovery days too. They are equally important :) You're doing amazing but you definitely need to know when to give yourself a break too. You will get burnt out... I have definitely made this mistake before. I feel like I gotta go hard all the time or I'm wasting my time. Jillian Michaels can get to us all on occasion. You're doing fantastic though, celebrate that. I think sometimes I verge on replacing the food addiction with an exercise one as well. That's definitely not the right way to go about it, but I know how easy it is to do that! If I don't have some kind of thing to focus on intensely and dedicate myself to... I have no distraction. Definitely takes a lot of practice to find that balance, but you WILL. It's not easy, I still struggle, but I never give up and I know you wont either :)

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SHELLYC2010 8/20/2010 2:34PM

    As I read your blog for the day, It made me think of Our Greatest Fear by Marianne Williamson.
I like you and so many other I taught be humble, not to think of yourselfs, Not to celebrate those accomplishments because you will make someone else feel bad. I think in itself pride is not a bad thing. Why shouldn't we be proud of what we are accomplishing why should we celebrate. Yes, I think you could get carried away with it. At the same time 24 years of not feeling it, You have so much to be proud of! You'll work out your balance for working out and rest. Unfortantly you may swing to far one way before you get it figured out. but you'll do it.

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MAGPIE17 8/20/2010 1:35PM

    I think you have a right to be proud, but make sure (like you referred to) that it's not a fleeting thing. Be proud that you completed your 5 miles, but STAY proud. Don't dismiss is (or as you say, search for your next high) right away. And be proud that you're making such an awesome LIFESTYLE change. If you keep pushing as much as you seem to be, you might burn out really soon. And once you burn out, it can sometimes be difficult to get back on track.

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BAYBELIEVER 8/20/2010 1:22PM

    OMG! I blogged about this almost exact thing a short time ago! Yes, I have realized I have become and exercise addict! I can't stand not being able to do something on every day! And the more the better because it makes me feel great!

I hadn't thought about it from a pride point of view though. Interesting. Because the other day after doing my 40 minutes of laps (only 4 of which were NOT the crawl), and my 20 minutes of jogging and aerobics, I got out of the pool and realized I was walking straight, with my head held high! Do you know how long it has been since I have done that? I bet YOU do! And if that is what pride is leading too, then I think it is a good thing. I may still be fat. And I will be for a while. But I am getting fit. And I am so, so proud of that!

And, yes, Sparkpeople friends had to talk me down and tell me that I needed days to rest and to listen to my body. I do that better now, because I have realized that I get out the next day and feel even better! But, on that day or so of rest, I sure do feel like a slug!

Congratulations on all you are accomplishing! You set the bar so high!!

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