Friday, February 11, 2011
Progress. You hear that word a lot, especially around here. Everyone's looking for it, people post how proud they are of it, how disappointed they are when they don't feel or see it. Progress is a big word...almost big enough to rival the other big P, the nasty P-word. (The one that leads people to want to jump off the cliff sometimes...you know it.) But what does it mean?
From Google: Definitions of "progress" on the Web:
1. develop in a positive way
That's this progress:
2. advancement: gradual improvement or growth or development
Uhm, that's what I'm hoping my muscles are doing right now.
3. advance: move forward, also in the metaphorical sense
Yesh, like my running...however slow it might be...
...or at least it WAS like that, until I started moving backward again...
4. the act of moving forward (as toward a goal)
Even if it's REALLY SLOWWWWWW, like the movement on my scale this week with a .2 here and a .2 there. *sigh*
5. build up: form or accumulate steadily
You mean like the pressure I put on myself or the (delusional) pressure I feel from those around us?
6. a movement forward
I like that one. Very easy to achieve. It's as easy as one step after another...
Okay, okay. So it means all the things we think it means. But what does it mean to ME?
Sure, progress is 85 pounds lost on the scale.
But, it's also...
... the lightness I feel when running now as compared to 80 pounds ago.
... knowing that I have the tools now that I struggled for so long to find.
... getting back up every time I fall.
... knowing that one misstep doesn't equal the end of the journey.
... being able to get off the couch.
... squeezing behind people.
... buckling (most) airline seat belts.
... not seeing stomach sticking out past my boobage when I look down.
... bending over and tying my shoes.
... getting to the gym 5-6 days a week.
... wanting to go to the gym.
... hating that the gym is closed Sundays.
... doing what I'm afraid of and realizing fear is in my head and can be overcome.
... walking miles before being tired and winded.
... lifting 60-100-200+ pounds with my arms or legs.
... understanding how nutrition works.
... understanding my body.
... wanting to train someone like I train myself.
... modifying Zumba to be more difficult and challenging.
... not being afraid of modifying recipes for healthier options.
... eating foods I know are healthier.
... giving myself permission to hope for more.
... giving myself the right to believe in my own beauty.
... being comfortable around people.
... being looked at in the eyes more often.
... feeling less wide.
... feeling free.
... planning outdoor activities and hating the weather.
... knowing that the weather doesn't have to stop me.
... being motivation for others.
... understanding I'm not you and I don't have to need what you need or do what you do or want what you want.
... having faith in my abilities.
... being willing to stretch the idea of what I can handle and testing my limits.
... feeling free to change my mind.
... being honest, even when I fear I might be judged.
... knowing when to keep my mouth shut.
... caring for others for more unselfish reasons.
... knowing that I still don't have all the answers, but I have the ability to find the answers to some of the unknown with enough research and time and understanding.
... understanding that I won't always feel happy, healthy and strong - and that is OK.
... learning how to get through the hard times without turning to food.
... learning to celebrate victories without food.
... learning to love food for what it can do to my body.
... learning to hate certain food for what it does to my body.
And progress is knowing that this:
...is not something to fear, but something to look forward to, because it feels like power and peace and strength and happiness soon after.
And progress is feeling power, not regret or embarrassment when I see this:
...because I'm not going back there. Because that girl had the strength in her to do what I've done so far...she just wasn't ready yet. She wouldn't be ready for another 2 years to really take on the challenge of changing her life completely. She had done it once before, but she needed that time to focus on other things, on making her inside stronger so she could deal with the pain and suffering this journey would bring.
That change of mind alone. That ability to be ready to change. That, in itself, is progress.
Sometimes it feels like the progress is so slow, that the changes aren't happening fast enough, that I've only chipped at the surface of what I need to do. The other day I heard this line in a Sara Bareilles song, "Compare where you are to where you want to be and you'll get nowhere." She's right. It's a waste of time. Comparing where you are to where you've been, though, is a great motivator to keep going forward. See, because even though it feels SO SMALL sometimes...when I put it down like this and really take a look, I realize that I've come a long way!
So I'm gonna keep going. Progressing by just putting one foot in front of the other. By trying to make this week better than the last. By remembering to work on all of me, not just the parts I think need to change now.
One step a day more is progress in its very definition. If all else fails, fight for just one step more.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
Things around my house have been CRAZY as of late...but more on that later. First, the good stuff.
Yesterday's eating went relatively well. I did have a bagel late last night and stayed up too late, but I was still under my calories for the day. *shrug* It just wasn't a "hungry" day at all. I made Moussaka for dinner last night, which Hubs and I thought was good, but the boys didn't like. (In all fairness Logan is currently sick. He ate three bites and then yakked in my hallway. *sigh*) For lunch I had some of the Lentil Soup I made the other night. Meh. It was alright. Certainly very filling, but it was kinda bland and just there. It's alright in a pinch. I'm not too keen on the vinegar addition and I think next time I'd just leave it out....if there ever is a next time. I was looking to use up my lentils, but I think I'll look elsewhere next time.
After work, my gym routine was to be: 5 minute warm-up, chest ST, and 30m Cardio follow-up...but on the way to the gym I started to feel sleepy. REALLY sleepy. I went anyways. I told myself I had to go. I wasn't feeling well, but I didn't want to stop unless I was yakking all over the place. So I went. And here's how IT went:
5 minute elliptical warm-up
Dumbbell Incline Presses
Primary Muscle Group - Chest (Upper Pectorals)
Secondary - Front Deltoids & Triceps
They look like this:
Target: 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Actual: 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8 - weight: 5/10/12/15
I felt those as I was doing it, but I think I can be brave and try upping the weight next time, especially on the front end. I like these a lot, though. I love that I can FEEL my pecs working to get where they need to be. There's just something special about feeling the body part you know the exercise is supposed to work working hard to do what you want it to do.
Barbell Flat Bench Press
Primary Muscle Group - Chest (Mid Pecs)
Secondary - Front Shoulders & Triceps
I doubt you need a picture, but here's the best one I found anyhow:
Target: 3 sets - reps: 12/10/8
Actual: 3 sets - reps: 12/10/6 - weight: 45/55/65
Who wouldn't like these? Oh, well, I didn't like the part where Hubs didn't make it to the gym so I was left without a spotter and this is the most extreme case of me wanting him there. I probably could've finished that last set, but fear had crept in telling me I was going to crush my ribcage with the stupid barbell loaded down. Still, I did well. I challenged myself and pushed through not feeling well.
And then it was time for cardio, and for the first time in a long time, I bargained my way out of it. The deal I made myself? If I go to Zumba tonight, I can let myself off the hook for missing cardio last night. SUCKS that I woke up to a horrible cough, but I'll still be there tonight, coughing my way through a Zumba workout and making myself proud, because that's what my poster tells me to do every day when I leave work.
And being at the gym tonight will be a good distraction from the family problems I've been dealing with. Here's the skinny:
So, Ethan is my youngest child. The darling of the family. Just like his Momma. He does great in school, loves finishing his homework early, and LOVES to read. He also hates healthy food 9 times out of 10, just because it's healthy and he'd rather have french fries and chicken nuggets, and hates cleaning. When I told him a week or so ago to go clean his room, he did what we call "pulling an Ethan," wherein, in order to get out of doing housework, you simply take a nap. I seriously know how to get my child to take a nap, but this practice of sleeping away your troubles seriously pisses me off. I usually yell at him and tell him to get his butt up and clean like he was told (I swear he's not actually tired. It could be 10 minutes after I woke him up from a 10-hour sleep and STILL he'd find a way to be tired enough to sleep instead of clean). This last time, I figured I'd try a different method. I was sick of hearing him cry and pout and scream his way through cleaning his room talking about how horrible I am and how much I must hate him to make him do it. *rolls eyes* So this time I looked right at him and I said, "I'm giving you the choice. Either this room is cleaned by bedtime or you're going to be grounded for two weeks. You make the decision and you live with the consequences." He is currently without video games and his room is still a complete and utter mess.
That same night, we had another issue arise when we got a call from another parent from school. Apparently her son had taken razor blades into school that day and passed them out to a few of the other kids, Ethan being one of them. I honestly felt scared for Ethan, but I wasn't completely upset with him. We've never dealt with razor blades and, in my eyes, being the blade pusher was MUCH MORE SERIOUS than accepting it. Still, we had to talk to him. We told him that it was dangerous and against school policy. We told him that if he was caught with it he would likely be suspended or worse and it would go in his permanent record. We told him we loved him and we were afraid of him getting hurt with something like that, and that we knew he knew it was wrong, and if he KNEW it was wrong, he should NOT have accepted it. We told him that there was a difference between tattling and telling a teacher about something like this, and next time he needed to be brave for everyone else and just tell. He cried. We took the razor blade away, and then talked to him about lying (he told me 3 times in a row he hadn't gotten anything at school from anyone until I told him, "We just got a call saying you did. Do you want to try that answer again?"), and we talked to him about safety again (he had hid the razor blade under his pillow in bed, the pillow he was laying on...I nearly died! SO close!!). He got punished at school for it and he was super mad that his "friend" had gotten him into trouble and made him miss some fun things they did at school.
Last Saturday, he admitted to me at Logan's basketball game that he had $20 in his coat. I knew he shouldn't have any money left from Christmas because he spends it on stupid crap almost faster than he gets it. I asked him where he got it from. I asked him SEVERAL times. Just the day before Hubs was remarking that he had THOUGHT he had more money in his wallet than he did. It took SEVERAL times before he finally admitted he stole it from his father's wallet. Being in the middle of the basketball game in the middle of a crowded, tiny gym, I told him to sit down and shut up next to me and we would discuss it later, but not to move from my side. Minutes later, he was gone. It took me several laps around the school, outside and in, before I found him hiding UNDER the school bleachers. I yelled at him to get out in front of everyone and he smirked and said he wouldn't. I informed him that when the game was over and everyone left, I was coming in after him if I had to. He came out some time later and sat next to me. I tried to grab his hand to take him into the gym and he wouldn't budge. He wouldn't speak, he had the nastiest look on his face, it was not the boy I had known for 8 years, it was rebellious and spiteful and I got a little sad immediately. Hubs was pissed and pulled him up out of the seat...and then Ethan took off. He ran away from me even though I told him several times I just wanted to talk (that's all I wanted, to talk!). He went outside without a coat and hid from me. After about 20 minutes, I had to give up. I figured he would come out eventually....I hoped he would. As I watched the final minutes of Logan's game, I was upset and hurt and scared. What was happening to my little boy?
Several times when we tried to talk to him on the way home, he mentioned that he should just "go kill myself" which broke my heart over and over again. It took me screaming at him, asking him to stop, talking to him in every manner I knew how before he finally admitted that he was wrong and said he was sorry and it would never happen again. I thought it was resolved. He added 2 more weeks to his grounding and it went up to a month.
Last night was the last straw. His behavior toward me regarding the dinner I had just spent nearly an hour preparing with his help, his disrespect. It was killing me to watch. I told him to just go to bed because I didn't want to be treated that way, and he popped out another stupid comment about how I don't care about him, don't love him, and he should just die. (It literally kills part of me every time I hear him say this...every single time.)
I don't know what to do and the stress of it all is starting to break this calm facade I've built for myself. For two weeks I've stayed mostly on task. I thought I was working the balanced scale to the greatest degree I have ever achieved. I work all day, I go to the gym with Hubs, I go home and cook a nice, healthy dinner for everyone, I put things away, I do laundry, and finally slip to bed VERY late, only to get up and do it all again the next day.
Needless to say, it's been a trying time.
Being a mom is hard right now. I can't look at him right now without seeing his mutilated body (my mind likes to recreate worst-case scenarios in full-color movie quality HDTV for me). Sleep has been a joke with those kinds of nightmares plaguing my mind. I don't know how serious he is. I don't even know where he got this from. All I know is that I don't want to leave it unchecked. I lost a best friend when I was in HS to suicide and I can honestly say that I wouldn't survive the same fate for either of my children. I simply would not survive it.
Anyhow, not sure why I'm laying it all out there...probably because I'm lost and hurt and need to talk and really have no one other than Hubs to talk to (and he doesn't have any clue how to better handle it either). I love my boys and I just want them to be happy.
I asked Ethan if I was spending too much time at the gym. He insisted, and I mean INSISTED that I keep going to the gym. He said he LOVES it when I go to the gym.
I can't exactly work less, so that's not an option.
I just instituted Family Game Night every Friday night where we spend hours upon hours playing games together as a family. Maybe it's having a negative effect instead of a positive one, but I don't know why it would.
I don't know why he's acting out. I know kids generally act out to get attention, any kind of attention, but I don't know how much more I could give other than quitting the gym. Maybe life was easier for him when Mommy stayed home all the time watching TV because she was afraid to be seen in public. I know he surely enjoyed it more when we went out to places like McDonald's and Wendy's, and we simply don't do that anymore. I don't care if we do. I'm happy to take him...I just don't really like the food anymore unless I have a random craving for something.
....life is hard sometimes. The trick is fighting through the battle and coming out on the other side a stronger version, having learned something from the struggle. I hope what I learn is what my child needs to grow up to be a successful, happy, loving human being. But right now...right now my heart is broken and my will is shattered. I dread going home tonight. I can't decided if I want to retreat to bed (my illness may determine that one for me) all weekend, or if I should take him out and show him what a fun time can be had with me. I don't know what to do, so I'll likely do what I can do - muddle through until I find the path....it's there somewhere...I just have to find it.
Lentil Soup recipe:
EDIT: FYI - Ethan is 8 years old.
Wednesday, February 09, 2011
Before we even get started, I simply MUST share this with those of you that haven't seen it. (Maybe I've just been living under a rock or something...)
It's an online contract you make with yourself. You put up money towards your goal and then report back each week on that goal. If you're successful, you keep your cash. If you aren't successful, they pull the money from your bank and send it to the place you designate - the most interesting idea to me being "an anti-charity," or a charity whose values and ideals you DO NOT support. Just think if you fail your fitness goal for the week and realize you've just sent 10 bucks to a charity supporting something you are morally against! EEP! That would most likely keep ME on track.
But, while it's an interesting idea...it feels a little ....negative to me. *shrug* I just feel like I need the ability right now to make mistakes and be okay with them. I have to spend this time learning that perfection is NOT what I'm after - consistency is. I need to let go of my half-baked notions that if I am not perfect, if I do not 100% follow-through with everything I say I want to do and/or am going to do, that I am not worth anything. Maybe later this site would be helpful, but right now I feel like it would feed into the negative fears I already read to myself every day and every week. Thoughts?
Now onto the good stuff.
Okay, so my eating was pretty good all day. I followed through with my goal of at least a 30-minute walk at lunch (actually did 35 minutes - 1.83 miles). Instead of setting out a route, I just walked. "Let's see how far we can go in this amount of time," I said to myself. And go I did. I actually surprised myself a little, walking all the way from my work to the mall and back basically. In April of last year, that would have been impossible to do at all probably...at least not with serious consequences to my body. Next time I hit one of these walks, we'll see if we can't go just a LITTLE faster or farther...
After work I headed straight to the gym. I had just enough time to do my ST before practice with my Vagina Monologues castmates.
ST for Monday:
Target: 4 sets - reps: 20/12/10/8
Done Last Week: 4 sets - reps: 12/10/10/8 w/just barbell weight
Actual Ths Week: 4 sets - reps: 12/8/6/5 w/just barbell weight
This is the best picture I've got...(someone find me a hot chick doing a seated military press with a barbell STAT! *lol*)
Yes, I was a little P.O.ed at myself. Why was this SO hard? Why couldn't I even match last weeks numbers, if not beat them? I worked to failure each time, so it wasn't me slacking off. And another thing...why are incline bench presses so much easier for me than these seated kind? Strange. Interesting. I decided not to be angry with myself, with my already sore and tired arms. I decided that this is an experiment, a lesson in learning how my body works. And I decided that by doing it at all, by working to failure, I had done what I set out to do. I can't be Superwoman all the time...even Superman needs time to be Clark Kent sometimes.
Standing Lateral Raises
Target: 4 sets - reps: 20/14/12/10
Actual: 4 sets - reps: 15/12/12/10 with 5lbs.
Oh, my poor shoulders! And, there's this issue with the weights on the rack verses the other set of weights...it's strange that the second set of 5 lb. weights felt much lighter to me than the first set. I don't know what it means, but it's interesting to note.
Behind the Back Barbell Wrist Curl
Target: 3 sets - reps: 16/14/14
Actual: 3 sets - reps: 16/14/14 weight: 15/20/30?
Okay, I did this with the EZ Curl Bar. It looks like this:
Last week, when I tried to do these wrist curls in front of me while seated on a bench, I realized I simply could NOT lift a 45-lb barbell with only my wrists. I failed at rep 1. So I switched out the barbell for dumbbells and continued on the best I could. This time I saw this bar sitting over under the rack of weights and thought I'd give it a try. It's much lighter than the regular barbells (my online research says anywhere from 15-25 pounds...this one was pretty dang light, so I'm guessing ours is on the low end). Finally, something I wasn't failing at! Finally, something to which I could ADD weight! YAY! I loved this...didn't feel it in the forearms QUITE as much as I felt the ones last week, but I'd definitely do it again.
After my workout, I tried out a scoop of the Body Fortress Chocolate Whey Protein mix I got at Wal-Mart. Not bad. Gets some protein in me in a jam, especially when I didn't have time to eat before heading to practice. Kept me going for a little while until I went home.
But the problem with Monday? Late evening. Glee episodes on DVD. A box of Life Cinnamon cereal sitting beside me, a huge bowl, and me mindlessly chowing down. *sigh*
Now onto Tuesday (that's yesterday, for those of you keeping track). ;)
I found out from work that the promotion I've been waiting on will be official on Monday. It means a serious change in duties and a serious change in pay (in the right direction) so YAY! (I've been waiting on this for MONTHS!) I also went to the store and spent 16 bucks on a binder, dividers and highlighters for my VM script. (Crap! I so hate spending money now! *pouts* I especially hate the thrill I get in the moment I realize I have a REASON to spend money. *pouts more* I'm really working hard on saving and figuring out the finances, especially before this raise hits and I'm all caught up in the "I have more money, what should I do with it?!" madness. I'm trying to squelch that before it even becomes something I can regret later.)
I had a full day at work. A lot of nothing for weeks, and then BAM! Everything hits all at once and I'm rushing to finish up everything before the end of tomorrow so I don't have to come in this weekend and finish it before I start the new gig Monday. Stress!! I didn't even THINK on the way to the gym last night...thinking is DANGEROUS! I listened to different versions of my VM monologues just to get some takes on how different things can be done and that distracted me until I pulled up out front of the gym.
Last night's workout:
45ish minute Zumba class
(My instructor still has a very sore foot and is babying it like crazy. The regulars like me have been trying to help out where we can, but sometimes we simply forget the moves and what comes next. This is good training for me, though, if I want to become an instructor some day!)
Followed that up with this ST routine:
Target: 4 sets - 16/14/12/12
Actual: 4 sets - 16/14/12/12 - weight ADDED on EACH SIDE: 45/55/70/80
These look like this and this BY FAR is my FAVORITE machine! (Even if WebMD does have them on their list of the 9 LEAST effective exercises! :P It's more effective than sitting on my couch at home, Holmes!)
Now, there's quite the issue here. See, I SWEAR the PT girl at my gym told me the machine itself weighs 200 pounds WITHOUT weights. Research online is providing difficult as these muscle-heads on here keep going "Who cares what it weighs? Just add more weight until it's heavy." (No dope, Sherlock...but I'd LIKE to keep track of how much I'm LIFTING. Go drink a protein shake and do a bicep curl..you're not helping me here!) Now, some of the actual answers are putting it between 45 and 100 pounds...and I'm guessing my gym's is at least on the higher end there because, Dude! Sled is HEAVY! Took me forever to get the balls to add weight to the thing....now I'm on a roll! Anyhow, as for now, until I get my question answered, I'm just gonna make sure I make a note of how much weight I ADDED. (Dude, I was pumped last night thinking I lifted my body weight! -- 200 + 80(2) = 360, yo! -- now I'm all bummed out.. POOP!)
Single Machine Leg Curls
Target: 4 reps - sets: 16/14/12/12
Actual: 4 reps - sets: 16/14/12/10 (yes, on each leg) weight: 30/30/40/40
Aww! A chubby stickish/outliney drawing figure thing...
So I went from the machine I LOVE the most, to the MOST HATED machine EVAH! No, serious. This is evil torture for my knees. Just crawling in the thing makes me think "FML!" and I ALWAYS get a head rush..because unlike stickish/outliney drawing figure thing up there, my machine is at a slant, which means my head is always facing down and all the blood likes to RUSH up there all super-quick like and I start seeing stars and stuff. (Not really, I totally hate this machine so I'm completely overexaggerating the horrible experience..but I do get headaches sometimes and always get a head rush from it...) Anyhow, it also makes me feel weak and powerless and makes me want to punch it in the face until I realize it doesn't even have a face. I hope you understand what I'm really trying to say is - I hate this machine and my life would be complete WITHOUT it! Blech!
Incline Seated Calf Raises
Target: 4 sets - reps: 20/16/16/16
Actual: 4 sets - reps: 14/12/12/10 - weight: 50/60/60/70
Look for this at the gym...
No, I'm dead serious. It's the most twisted, evil, painful, FUN machine I've found yet. I don't like it more than my leg press, let's be honest here, but it's running a close third behind the inclined bench presses. And the Hubs quote of the week (so far, I guess) comes from this very machine... I told him it felt like I was on a see-saw... "Yeah," he said. "The see-saw from HELL!" *snort* My calves were pulsing and burning and trying to cramp up and I just kept going because it felt so weird, so fun, so...different. If felt like I wasn't doing ANYTHING, but my calves were screaming a different story. If you've got one...try it. Fo sho!
So what did I do after all that killer working out and making my body sweat? I gave in to Hubs' passing mention of Mexican for dinner. I could've smacked myself in the face. Anyhow, I just tried to be smart. Ordered Chicken Fajitas...ate a LOT of veggies on my tortillas and barely ate half of it before surrendering it to Hubs to finish off. I ate some chips, yes. But even though I joked that I needed a margarita to celebrate the promotion, I opted for a HUGE glass of water and I finished the whole thing off! (No, seriously, there glasses are huge!) Put it all in my tracker this morning and...gosh, oh gee...I'm still within my ranges. Not ideal (too much salt and I can never be too sure of the calorie counts from meals out) but it'll do, pig...it'll do. No binges on cereal or stupid crap like that. I went home and practiced my monologues and went to bed.
Tonight it's a Chest night! BA-DOW! *lol* They've only given me two things to do, so I generally like to add in abs on these nights. (I know the program says not to add anything, but I cannot see a ST schedule with NO MENTION of crunches or ab workouts ANYWHERE. WTF is that? Who TF does that? Uhm, excuse me! I'll have a side of six-pack abs with my perky boobies, please...mmmkaythanks!?)
Yeah, I'm in a weird mood today, if you haven't already noticed. I'm going to go back to work now and finish up as much as I can before 6pm...and at some point I might fit in some light reading:
Oh, and where's that State Farm lady with the hot tub? My arms and legs officially hate me. I'm sore everywhere. I can't stop smiling though...it's the weirdest thing. I have to remind myself to stand/sit up straight because it hurts so much. My arms feel like rocks one minute and jello the next. I think I might die every time I raise my arm to reach something, or scratch my nose, or even put on my coat. And yet, through it all, I can't stop thinking about what's next. It doesn't hurt in a bad way. It's strange how I can be super sore and yet think, "Okay, that was good, what next?" Who am I? What am I becoming? Is this about to get old? Will I burn out? Am I resting enough? I'm giving the program a chance. The scale is mean and not moving, but I feel those muscles there and I see them, actually SEE them getting bigger and stronger. And I do freak out sometimes about "bulking up" even though I know it's a lie, but I still have my moments. And then there are times, like this morning, when I'm sitting on the bed and everything hurts, and the thought of even attempting to put on my pants is a challenge I'm just not ready to face, and I stretch and I feel the soreness and I whince, and then I look down casually at the bed, thinking about sleeping some more and how great that would be, and I see it...that bump...three of them actually...actual sections of my arm disconnected from one another, no longer just a lump connected to my shoulder, but something that moves and works and has pain and gets through it and keeps pushing. And I smile and have the strength, somehow, to get through my day. I've had more energy than I've ever had and more soreness (and I want to say pain, but it rarely is...though my right arm is twinged just a bit) than ever too. It's a strange thing, this body making business. And all I can think to myself is, "Sore is your body's way of saying 'Thank you for your hard work.'"
Monday, February 07, 2011
Oh, sleep! What a fickle beast you are! I wish you would, for once, remain in some sort of stable, predictable state. Right now, you're as bad as the weather outside. Hot one day, cold the next. Snow in the morning, sunshine and high 40s in the afternoon. It's enough to drive a person crazy!
Let's face it folks...my sleeping schedule is ruined. In the past week or so, I was enjoying the fall-asleep-fast effects of pushing my body to its limits. When a 1-hour drive to work is followed by 10-hours working, which is followed by another hour drive to the gym, which is followed by at least an hour working myself to near exhaustion is then followed by cooking dinner and trying to get things like laundry and cleaning done in the final hours before bedtime - a girl hits the pillow and falls fast asleep, thankful to finally get some rest.
Last Wednesday, my husband and I went to dinner for our anniversary. Sure, I had taken off work early around 1pm, but I had then spent over an hour at the gym, warming up, strength training some difficult moves, and then pushing myself into a 30 minute cardio session. When I got home I sat down for about 10 minutes before I had to be up and moving again. I hadn't eaten a lot that day either, trying to save up enough calories and sodium for a dinner out, and I needed to shower and change and then drive the 45 minutes to Parkersburg (because Hubs rarely drives...I'm just better with directions and remembering the roads and figuring out which way to go and all that). When we sat down at the table, I wanted to put my head down and sleep, but I shook myself and tried to focus on the man in front of me and what we'd accomplished together in 9+ years of being together. I ate dinner without guilt, knowing my body needed energy and accepting that this anniversary was one for the record books because we managed to make it through the day without fighting and managed to communicate to one another how strong our love was. After dinner, we went to the mall. I could still feel the burn from my workout as we walked down the suddenly LOOOOONG corridor that is the middle of the mall. I was slow, but I wanted to enjoy this time. After trying clothes on at LB, and getting that happy feeling of fitting into 22s, a size I haven't worn since early high school days, we headed back to the car and over to Home Depot. I admit it, I was beat by this point. I felt like I would pass out from exhaustion at any moment, but Hubs had gone through LB with me, the most I could do was walk around Home Depot with him for a few. When we got out to the car, though, the charade was over. "Can you drive?" I asked politely, and then managed to keep my eyes open enough to help him find his way out of Parkersburg (for those who have been there, you know what a challenge that might be!). Once we were on the freeway, though...I was out. Flipped the switch and was done.
Thursday? Oh, yea...I spent almost the entire day in bed sleeping. My body was done and it let me know that by refusing to get out of bed even to pee! I spent the better part of my day in bed, and the rest of the day running around like a crazy person trying to make up for all the time I had wasted while sleeping. (After I cut myself with a knife in my haste, Hubs insisted I take it easy.)
Saturday was a hard emotional day for me. With Ethan's bad behavior recently and me trying to get through to him in a long drawn-out talk, with tears streaming down my face and my heart breaking as a mother, it was enough to drain a person of all hope. I slept restlessly that night, plagued with nightmares that, at least for me, always come in full-color box-office-magic movie form. People would have paid top dollar to watch my nightmare that night. The story was good, with suspense and mystery and supernatural elements. Fear was throughout...so was gore. But when your children and loved ones are involved in the action, it makes it difficult to watch. But even though my sleep was a bit restless, it was long and quick coming. After getting the boys' haircut and spending the rest of the day cleaning and doing laundry (again!), I was tired. I stayed up to watch Hubs' UFC fight with him. (I actually enjoy them more now that I can tell more about what's going on following my boxing lesson - I'm sitting there pointing out "Oh, he's left handed!" and "Ooh, this guy is going to have some amazing kicks!" --- btw, that prediction of mine rang true as the guy I said it about defeated his opponent in the 2nd round with a kick to the chin. See! Told ya! *lol*) My body wanted to sleep, but I wanted to stay up...and I won. But as soon as my head hit the pillow, all bets were off.
Last night I expected more of the same. Sure, like Saturday, I didn't get a workout in. Yesterday was a scheduled rest day. I spent some time cleaning the living room, spent more time doing laundry (again! I swear I'm almost caught up! *lol*), and spent some time putting away all the groceries after a long shopping trip (but I still forgot 2-3 things! DOH! *sigh*). I sat down to write out my recipes in a notebook, and then took the time to figure out what meal would fit each day. I watched my team win the Super Bowl and then watched Glee after. When I got back to bed, I felt that familiar "I'm exhausted and ready for sleep feeling." Unfortunately, Hubs didn't feel it. He wanted to chat and snuggle and such...and I gave in because I love spending time with him and because I knew he really wanted that time. But when it was time to roll over and go to sleep - I couldn't. And the thing that was most in my way? My body.
No, seriously, I'm going to rant for a minute, but please understand that I'm not upset about these things...just confused, irked and noting them for future reference.
My body is bonier than ever.
I know, I know - I'm still over 300 pounds. I get that. But I don't EVER remember my body being anything other than plump and round and soft. Now my knees jab me and my hip bone hurts when I lay on my side, and my elbows aren't comfy pillows anymore. My stomach seems to have come up more, and that's causing parts of my leg to be exposed that I'm just not used to. And (boys, close your eyes) - my poor vajayjay hasn't been this exposed for ...well, I just don't remember a time.
My body, while I love the changes it's making, is becoming a bit uncomfortable again.
I know this is temporary. This happened to me when my collarbones came out. I kept brushing against them and felt like my hands were being cut. I had issues with feeling more of the muscles in my leg and feeling some discomfort there. It lasted a few weeks or so and then I grew accustomed to it. Sometimes I purposely brush past my collarbones now because I love the way they feel. And most days those muscles in my leg make me smile. They are my strength. They are what carries me through. And even if no one else sees the power in these legs, just feeling it is enough to put a smile on my face.
Well, it seems that now I've hit another period of adjustment. My hands. My hips. My RIBS! (Seriously?) I can't say I'm surprised that I'm a little unnerved by the changes...I knew that was coming even though nobody seems to talk about it (the only mention I've ever heard is from my mother, who says roller coasters are no longer any fun because they whip her around too much and it hurts her boney body). But I never expected it to happen so soon, and so often...and in stages. I mean, I guess it's better that way...but it takes periods of adjustment to get used to where I am.
I'm going to admit something to all of you right here and right now...
Sometimes I'm afraid of losing too fast.
There...I said it.
It's not as often as the fear of losing too slow...but it's there like this small doubt in the back of my mind.
The changes can scare me a bit.
What's with the change in my sleeping patterns?
What am I supposed to do now that I rarely get sick? Can I trust that or is it a fluke?
Why does my body keep poking me?
HOW DO YOU SKINNY CHICKS DO IT?!
Yep, I say that a lot. Hubs laughs at me. He laughed at me Wednesday when I told him that my jeans were hurting my "special place" because my stomach doesn't act as the big buffer it once was.
TMI? Sorry! Truth? Absolutely!
How do you skinny people do it?
Do jeans ever get comfortable again? I used to live in the things, and now I'm considering giving them up! Am I going to be one of those people who wears dresses all the time now? WTF?!
This whole business of losing a lot of weight is an interesting journey, to say the least. Sure, there are the things people talk about - the increased energy, the better skintone, the improved digestion. But what about the stuff people don't mention? What about the fact that I can't seem to trust my body for longer than 5 seconds because it keeps changing on me?! Case in point - the size 22 trouser pants I bought Wednesday night? I put them on this morning and they felt as loose as the 24s felt that night. Fluke? Am I just having a "skinny day?" How can fat girls have skinny days? None of this makes any sense to me.
I'm just going with the flow for now. I'm just making mental notes of the changes that happen and reminding myself that they're all happening to make me into the lean, fit, healthy person I always wanted to be, and always could have been with the right effort put behind it.
But still...WTF, dude?!
Sunday, February 06, 2011
Weight Last Week: 333.0
Weight Goal for This Week: 331.0
Actual Weight This Week: 330.6
Weight Loss/Gain This Week: -2.4 pounds!
First of all - YAY! Second of all, I was not exactly perfect this week, so that just goes to prove that streaking is really important in case things happen that stunt your progress for the week. Finally, I'm a little confused...
Let's review the week, shall we? Here were my fitness plans:
Sunday - 1 hour private boxing lesson. I will sweat today. I will make sure of that. CT King has full permission to kick my arse into gear!
It was an awesome experience! I felt like I learned so much, and yet, there is still so much to learn. It was fun and painful at times, and I sweated like a hog on a spit! *lol* We're set for another hour-long appointment at the end of this month. *big grin*
Monday - Shoulders & Forearms
5 minute cardio warm-up
Military Presses - 4 sets - reps: 20/12/10/8
One Arm Cross Cable Laterals - 4 sets - reps: 20/12/10/8
Seated Reverse Barbell Wrist Curls - 3 sets - reps: 16/14/14
Cardio follow-up of at least 30 minutes
5 minute warm-up on elliptical
Military Presses - 4 sets - reps: 12/10/10/8 with bar only (45 pounds)
One Arm Cross Cable Laterals - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/12/10 - wt: 20/25/30/35
Seated Reverse Barbell Wrist Curls - 3 sets - reps: 6/10/12 - with 8 lb dumbbell instead
Follow up of 20 minutes of Racquetball
Yep, I'm giving myself a sticker for it. I did the best I could on sets and reps. I adjusted to a dumbbell when I couldn't complete the wrist curls with a 45-lb barbell, instead of just giving up. And that 20 minutes of racquetball took me to the point of exhaustion. I had just enough energy left to come home and make dinner.
I also signed Hubs up for the gym. I sent a call out to him on my way home, telling him I really needed a spotter for my new workouts. My options were to either have him come down and help or ask someone at the gym. It was great working out with him, although he wasn't too sure about what he wanted to do (I hope someday he starts making a plan like I do! *lol*).
Tuesday - Legs & Calves
5 minute cardio warm-up (or Zumba)
Front Squats - 4 sets - reps: 16/14/12/12
Straight Leg Deadlift - 4 sets - reps: 16/14/12/12
Reverse Calf Raises - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/16/16
(I may also add my leg press machine in, because I really enjoy it!)
Cardio follow-up of at least 15 minutes
(I may do Zumba first, followed by this ST routine, but I need to follow up with a little cardio after, even if it's just 10 or 15 minutes)
45 minutes of Zumba
Front Squats - 4 sets - reps: 16/14/12/12 - with 45-lb barbell, no added weight
Straight Leg Deadlift - 4 sets - reps: 5/10/10/10 - with 45-lb barbell only
Reverse Calf Raises - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/16/16 - 0 lbs of added weight
Leg Press Machine - 2 sets - reps: 15/15 - weight 270
STRETCHING! (I had forgotten a lot of that on Monday. OOPS!)
Yep, I'm getting one of those. Hubs came Tuesday night too, and when he met me after Zumba he was super sweaty. Apparently he found the cardio setting on the treadmill, which automatically adjusts the incline and speed for you to give you a good 15-minute workout. It was so cute to see him out of breath and HAPPY about it! ;) I think he may have caught the bug. Unfortunately, he caught another bug, so it became difficult for him to push through the illness in his first week. :/
Wednesday - Chest
5 minute cardio warm-up
Barbell Incline Bench Press - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Flat Bench Dumbbell Fly - 3 sets - reps: 12/10/8
Cardio follow up of at least 45 minutes, hoping for 60 minutes. I think I'll hit a cardio gym circuit with the elliptical, treadmill, rowing and boxing (using the techniques I use today).
5 minute warm-up on Elliptical
Barbell Incline Bench Presses - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8 @ 45-lbs
Flat Bench Dumbbell Fly - 3 sets - reps: 12/10/8
20 minutes on the Treadmill for 1.14 miles total (about 18 min/mile)
10 minutes on the punching bags practicing my boxing
Yep, I get it even though I did only 30 minutes instead of 45. I had to work up to 30 after weight-lifting this week, and it was a major accomplishment and I felt super tired. Hubs wasn't able to join me this night, so I did these all by myself and met every rep goal. I was already feeling much stronger, even though I'd been sore since Sunday and it wasn't letting up at all! *lol*
Thursday - REST
I think I'm just going to let myself have this rest day, no questions asked. I work both jobs anyhow that day, so it will be a full 15-hour day for me.
I took rest to a whole new level. I got sick. I had to call off both jobs and spend most of the day in bed. There was a point where I was feeling a tiny bit better throughout the day and I felt like I should be doing something - so I started cooking like a fiend and cleaning until I cut myself and Hubs insisted that I just CHILL OUT! *lol* I told him that it didn't feel right, not doing anything. I feel like I needed to fill the space - and there was so much here that still needed to be done anyhow. I got a bunch of laundry done and cooked and cleaned some in the kitchen before giving into his wishes and going back to bed to rest.
Friday - Back & Calves
5 minute cardio warm-up
Hyperextensions* - 4 reps - sets: 20/12/10/8
Wide Grip Chins to Front* - 3 sets - reps: 12/10/8
Calf Raises on Leg Press Machine - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/16/16
Cardio follow-up of at least 45 minutes.
Let me start off by saying, everything was screwed up. Hubs was supposed to come with me, but I forgot my Dr.'s appointment and had to reschedule and by the time I was done, it was too late and he felt he needed to get to work, so I had to gym-it by myself. Plus, he had my iPhone and I had no access to my workouts, so I had to go from memory.
I did my 6 minute warm-up on the treadmill, starting out at 3.2 or so, then increasing .2 every minute or so until I spent the last minute RUNNING at around a 4.2-4.5 pace (I don't really remember...I didn't want to make TOO much of a deal out of it - the DOING it felt amazing!)
For the hyperextensions, I had to substitute the back extension machine (because my stomach gets in the way of the hyperextension bench) - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/14/12 @ 170/180/190/200 pounds.
For the Wide Grip Chins to Front, I tried leg lifts on the Captain's Chair...it was sad. 2 sets - reps 5/1. Yep, that's it. That was to the point of failure. I guess it means I only have improvement to do from here!
Calf Raises on Leg Press Machine - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/14/12 @ 270/290/320/340
Leg Presses too at the same weight and reps/sets.
Crunches on Ab Recline Bench - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/14/12 with 8, then 10 lb medicine ball, leaning back further with each set to get more of a burn.
3 minutes (or less *lol*) on the Stair Step machine (Yep, I *do* hate you!) followed by rowing for 7 minutes (oh, how I miss being able to do 12-15 minutes on this thing!) and then HIIT for 18 minutes on the elliptical. I set it on interval training, and for every 3 minutes, I did 1 minute at full possible speed (about 180-210). I was BEAT by 18 minutes.
I then stretched for about 10 minutes with my yoga moves.
I totally earned that sticker!
Saturday - Triceps & Biceps
5 minute cardio warm-up
Tricep Cable Pushdowns - sets 4 - reps: 16/12/10/8
Lying Cross Face Triceps Extensions - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Standing Dumbbell Curls - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Lying Dumbbell Curls - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Cardio follow-up of at least 30 minutes
(I'll probably put in some planks and push-ups in here too)
This is where it all fell apart. We found out at Logan's basketball game that Ethan's been stealing money out of Hubs' wallet, which caused Ethan to have a full-on tantrum in the gym, hiding from me, and then running away and hiding. It was horrible. By the time we left the game, I wanted to still go to the gym...I started driving there, but then I realized that this problem needed to be dealt with immediately, and I drove back home. We had a long talk in the car, he apologized to everyone for his recent acting-out, and Hubs and I missed our sacred gym-time together. It was a difficult day.
No goal met sticker. I'm really sad about it, because I almost hit every single day this week. But this is an improvement, so I'm just going to have to take it and build upon that.
It's hard when family gets in the way.
As far as eating...I did fine Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday I didn't eat much saving up for our Anniversary dinner, and then went over my calories anyhow, but had an amazing meal with the Hubs following a stupid and silly fight the day before. Thursday was a little off because I was sick. Friday was crap as I started eating junk food, and Saturday...well, let's just not talk about yesterday, alright? It was a HARD day.
Still, I ended up 6 for 7 for fitness, and 4 for 7 eating wise (I still did alright on Thursday, it's just my eating was off). I need to work on improvements for this next week.
As for the freetrainers.com program. I've been sore ALL week, but I seriously like this plan. It makes me feel powerful. Hubs asked me what masochist came up with this schedule at one point. *lol* But then later he commented on the arm muscles he was already seeing, and I noticed that my abs are starting to pull out some definition again...it's starting to flatten a bit and I know there are muscles under there just waiting to come out!
As far as my other goals, I've been too stressed about working out finances to purchase much of anything beyond Hubs' anniversary gift, the internet issues have kept me from writing any articles or starting my blog, I did get a menu plan together for next week which has a bunch of new recipes, and I've upped my water intake to a more acceptable level again. I'm getting there...it's taking time, though.
Goals for next week.
Sunday - Rest day.
We need to do the grocery shopping today and I need to get a few meals together prep-wise and maybe cook a couple if there's time.
Monday - Shoulders & Forearms
5 minute cardio warm-up
Military Presses - 4 sets - reps: 20/12/10/8
Standing Lateral Raises - 4 sets - reps: 20/14/12/10
Behind the Back Barbell Wrist Curls - 3 sets - reps: 16/14/14
I'm going to sub out my follow-up cardio for a 40 minute walk on my lunch break, because I have a practice for my Vagina Monologues performance at 7:30pm at the library. I have to hurry through the weight-lifting exercises just to be sure I get them all done before I have to leave.
Tuesday - Legs & Calves
45 minute Zumba
Leg Presses - 4 sets - reps: 16/14/12/12
Single Machine Leg Curls - 4 sets - reps: 16/14/12/12
Incline Seated Calf Raises - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/16/16
10 minute cardio follow-up
I'd love to get the reps in first, but I doubt that will happen. I have to work with the time I'm given and do the best I can. By the time I get there, Zumba's about to start...and I don't want to miss Zumba.
Wednesday - Chest
5 minute cardio warm-up
Dumbbell Incline Presses - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Barbell Flat Bench Presses - 3 sets - reps: 12/10/8
Follow up with 30-45 minutes of cardio (including boxing)
Thursday - Rest Day
Friday - Back & Calves
5 minute cardio warm-up
Seated Cable Rows - 4 sets - reps: 20/12/10/8
Close Grip Chins* - 3 sets - 12/10/8
Machine Standing Calf Raises - 4 sets - reps: 20/16/16/16
Follow up of 30-45 minutes of Cardio OR 20 minutes of HIIT
* I probably can't do these, so I'll probably work in the Captain's Chair again...we'll see.
Saturday - Triceps & Biceps
5 minute cardio warm-up
Lying Triceps Extensions - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
One Arm Triceps Extensions - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Standing Dumbbell Curls - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
Dumbbell Preacher Curls - 4 sets - reps: 16/12/10/8
45 minutes of Cardio
Stretch after each set, after ST, after Cardio. STRETCH!
Eat within calorie range of 1710-2060.
Drink 10-12 cups of water per day.
Save money! No useless spending.
Figure out internet issues and start blogging and writing.
Work on Monologues and start memorizing.
Cut out the sweets and junk food Friday nights!
Protein shakes between weight-lifting and cardio.*
*I'm trying this out. Yes, I bought some...it is said on freetrainers.com that if you're going to do your cardio after your weight-lifting, it might be helpful to get a little protein power in between through these shakes if you're lifting more than 125 pounds, which I am on leg days.
This is week 2 of this freetrainers.com 8-week program. So far so good. I'm sore all the time, but at least I know I'm DOING something again.
Weight Goal for next week: *gulp* 228.6
Oh, I do hope I get this. I haven't seen the other side of 330 for more than a day, and I'm so anxious to get there. My whole family keeps reminding me that 298 isn't so far off...and I can't wait to see Deuceland...so here I go, trying to make progress and make this happen for me. I'm also seriously hoping that my next weigh-in with my insurance program will have me back to more FFM (fat-free mass) than fat-mass. Hopefully I'm building STRONG muscles that will really help me along the way to reach my goals and see myself at thinner than I have been since high school!
One final note about this week. I had a little victory at Lane Bryant (Hubs and I went to the mall after dinner on our anniversary...I desperately need new work pants!). I grabbed a pair of 24 and a pair of 26 pants, and figured I'd try the 24s first. They were too big! I had to have Hubs run off and get me 22s, which fit beautifully! So YAY for seeing sizes I haven't seen since high school (even if the number on the scale is lagging so far behind!)! Also tried on a super cute shirt, but I didn't have the money to get it. *pouts* It was a 22/24 too. I did take a picture though! ;)
I'd need one of those smoothing shirts underneath, but it's SOO cute! I'm so sad I didn't get it...maybe I can get Hubs to buy it for me! *lol* Or maybe I'll just see if it goes on sale/clearance at the end of the month...
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