Thursday, April 14, 2011
As my 1 year anniversary with SP approaches, and as I struggle to not only maintain the 90+ pounds I've lost but to continue to lose more, I thought that perhaps it was time for some reflection.
The past few nights I've gone to bed thinking, "What am I doing? Why is everything suddenly so hard?!" The answer, of sorts, came to me the other night. "It was last time." What was that? Last time... In 2004 I weighed in at 466.6 when I had a consultation for a doctor while I was considering gastric bypass surgery. The number scared me, as did all the "but I gained it all back!" stories I had heard in my mother's GP support group meetings. GP wasn't a quick fix...it still required effort to maintain the weight loss. Rules had to be followed. Guidelines were set for success. And too many people I saw simply believed they could have the surgery, lose their excess weight and continue to eat as they wanted. I'd seen the trap, and I didn't want to fall into it. I vowed on the spot that if I was going to do this, I was going to do it right.
I started paying attention to what I ate. I thought of it as a preparation for my life after surgery. I didn't want to have that "shock and awe" moment when I realized that certain foods were off limits. I'd had far too many diets that began with a day of binging the night before. You know...last meal and all that. I simply started to pay attention to food labels. I stuck to high protein, low carb, and low fat and sugar foods because that's what my mother was doing following her surgery. She was a wealth of knowledge on what worked and what didn't, and even though I was going through the process of trying to get approved for surgery, I was also changing my life and the way I ate. Food was looked at as a process to gain the appropriate amount of energy and nutrients without calorie-loading my day.
After a while, I started working out. Walk Away the Pounds had worked for my mother, and it was a great way for me to continue to hide myself inside my house and not worry about facing the demons of the stares and looks I was sure I would get if I took a stroll around the block. I could sweat like a pig, be completely out of breath, and I wouldn't have to worry about someone looking at me funny as I gasped for air while walking behind them or past them. When I began, I couldn't even finish the 1-Mile walk.
For months I stuck to this program I had set for myself. I started to realize that my body didn't respond well to anything under 1600 calories. I started drinking water like it was my job. "Just two more sips." "Come on! Chug that glass and you've got one down for the day!" I cut out sodas and began relying on foods that fit into the meal plan *I* had arranged, conforming as best I could to the guidelines I had set for myself.
I had bumps along the way. I didn't have a scale at home that would measure my weight, so my sister, who was working at OSU Medical Center at the time, arranged for me to sneak into a doctor's office near OSU's campus, weigh on their massive digital scale, and sneak out again. Each week, I would take the 30 minute drive into town, sneak in the door, weigh myself quickly, and walk back out. At the car, I would write down the number in a tiny notebook I kept with me. Sometimes I had joyous days. Two-three pounds for the week! Other times, it was an ounce loss. .2 pounds. .4 pounds. Or, worse, a gain. Each time on the drive home I would analyze the week I had had. I tried to figure out what was working and what wasn't. Some times I cried the entire way home because I felt like I was doing everything right and wasn't seeing the results that were promised me by some unknown diet fairy somewhere. But after those 30 minutes were over, I vowed to start up again. "Next week will be better. Next week will make up for this week."
As the months passed, it got harder and hard to convince myself to continue. In the summer of 2005, my husband and I had decided to move the family down to WV where some housing had become available. And, all this time, I have thought and firmly believed that this was why those last 20 pounds to 100 pounds lost took so long. I was sure it was the uprooting of my life, the disappearance of my support system (my family), and the change in scenery, shopping stores, and routine that caused me to stall. I remember staying at 380 for the longest time. I had finally purchased a scale that would weigh up to 440 pounds, so I didn't have to sacrifice my goals once my weigh-in place was too far away for weekly visits.
380. 380. That number haunted me for so long. With a final push and some deep-hidden determination, I forced myself to lose the last 20 pounds. I stepped on the scale one day and saw 366 pounds and I smiled and told the world that I had done it. I had lost 100 pounds. And then my diet came to an abrupt halt. It was too hard and I was frustrated. I gave in and gave up. I still tried to watch what I ate, but as I distanced myself from my rules little by little, the rules fell apart completely. I never went back to regular soda, but diet soda crept back in on a regular basis. So did sweets and sugary foods. And buffets and Chinese food and pizza. I thought I was just "getting to know the area," but what I was doing was giving up.
I still have no idea what clicked for me last year on that weekend trip to Columbus. My best friend since 5th grade and I went on a little day trip on the last day of my visit. It started with a trip to our middle school, just down the street from her house. "Why are we here?" she asked. I shrugged. I didn't know. It just seemed like a good idea at the time. We joked and laughed and took pictures in front of the building, and suddenly this memory popped into my head. It wasn't of classes or teachers or anything of the sort. It was me, walking the middle school track out back, playing a mixed tape that my boyfriend (now husband...yes, we've been together FOREVER) had made me. I remembered feeling proud of myself. I was in 7th or 8th grade and I had taken it upon myself to try to exercise. It may have also hit me that 6th grade was the last time I had seen size 14 pants and any number on the scale under 200.
The rest of the day continued in fun fashion. We found a great sushi place and had some wonderful food. We drove up to a local winery and had our very first wine tasting. It was like I was starting to realize that we were all grown up. And, somehow, that image of me walking the track, proud of myself, sure that I was going to lose the weight and start high school as a "normal" girl kept coming back into my mind. I realized I had been fighting this battle my entire life. I tried not to think on it. It wasn't a sad day at all, but I suddenly remembered that I had once thought of myself as a success story. Years before I had struggled for months to reach 100 pounds lost. I currently had no clue what I weighed, but I knew I wanted that pride in myself back. I wanted to feel like that again and know that I was a success. I wanted people to see me as the girl who fought back and won.
When I returned home the next day, I popped on the internet and googled "free online calorie log" or something of that sort. I knew the rules. Sure, I had abandoned them long ago...but I knew them. Something on that 2 1/2 hour drive home had led me to believe that I was ready to take charge of my life again. I stepped on the scale. 416.2 pounds. I tried not to be discouraged by the weight I had gained back. I told myself, "You've maintained a 50 pound weight loss for 5 years. Most people would kill for that kind of success." I didn't set any initial goals. I didn't want to think that THIS TIME would be it...because I didn't want to disappoint myself. "Let's just see where this goes," I thought. Honestly, I figured I would follow a plan for a month and then fail miserably and give it up. My life was already crazy and chaotic, working 2 jobs and going to school full-time while trying to maintain a family and take care of pets. I never planned on succeeding. I only planned to try.
On day one I was discouraged. I saw too many people who only had 50 pounds to lose...and there I was, over 400 pounds and sure that I did not belong. I said this on day one:
"I'm in mostly planning stages right now (4 weeks of school left), but I tend to make changes when I'm paying more attention, because I DO know what's right and wrong, and consciously chosing to do wrong all the time can kill my feelings of self-worth. The plan for the day is finding a place where I feel like I fit. Where I don't feel like an outsider trying to make something work that doesn't. Where I can hold myself accountable by being myself, completely honest."
And by the end of the first full day:
"So today was the end of the first full day here. I had fully intended to simply check out the site and set some goals, not really get anything started...but when I saw how easily I could use the tools, I bought into the hype and starting logging everything. Of course, when I log, I find myself eating better, making better choices. I guess my head is just in the right place to start this journey."
By the end of the first month, I was already thinking about 5ks. On May 19th, I said:
"Right now I can comfortably walk 1.5 miles, so I'm going to try to work my way up to the 3.1 miles and find a comfortable pace."
By May 23rd my weight was 392.8 pounds. I had lost 20+ pounds in a month and was feeling comfortably under 400 pounds. That week alone I had lost 6 pounds...and do you know what I did in my blog? I talked about all the things I HADN'T done - all the WRONGS I made. Pattern, anyone?
So, yes, it was easy in the beginning.
And, yes, it got harder as I moved along.
And, yes, I knew that would happen.
But as I've struggled the past few weeks, I've sat here thinking, "What is WRONG with me?" - a typical Esther response to any situation. And then I got it. Somehow that 100 pound lost mark is VERY difficult. What is also difficult is the One-Year mark. There is this barrier in my head that fears those big milestones. It's a typical Capricorn trait - fear of failure, but also fear of success. Somewhere in my messed up brain I do the normal worrying of "what if I don't reach my goal?" But somewhere else is also the notion of, "What if I do? What then?"
Last night I decided that I'm not even going to make such a big deal out of it. There is no rule book that says that I HAVE to reach 100 pounds lost in 1 year. I wrote that rule in my head a long time ago, but nobody really cares if I reach it. I'm not going to suddenly lose all my SPeeps (thanks John for that! ;) ) if I "fail" to reach that goal. There won't be a flogging of "just think of what you COULD'VE done" from my lovlies if I reach 100 pounds lost in a year and a month or a year and 8 weeks. Nobody cares WHEN it will happen. No one is sitting around with a countdown clock tsking me because I haven't done this thing I thought I should. I need to let go of this invisible pressure that *I* have placed on myself. I have lost 90+ pounds, and that is an accomplishment. Would people gasp louder if I said 100 pounds lost in a year instead of 90? No. Honestly, they would not. They would say the same "good job!" They would smile the same either way. It's time to let go of the idea that I need MORE to be BETTER. I am great enough already.
So, there we go. Day one of my reflections. I almost didn't start this because I won't be done with day 12 by Monday. (See my crazy OCD tendancies? CRAZY!) But just like I decided that "100 pounds lost in 1 Year" didn't matter anymore, neither does the crazy "I have to do THIS by THIS date" nonsense rules. I'm in this for life. I'm ready to NOT make the same mistakes I made the last time. I don't want to step on a scale 5 years from now and see 380 or 400 again. I want to keep going and make this a lifelong journey for myself. I LIKE the way I feel now. I like eating great, delicious healthy foods. I LIKE feeling in control of what I eat and when.
I'm not giving it up. No way, no how. As I told my Hubs last night, "And you can't make me!"
EDIT: For those just joining us, I never got the surgery - but the results were too obvious for me to ignore, so I kept doing what I was doing.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Sunday fell apart after about an hour of watching everyone around me dish into cake and chips. I had restricted myself from cake, but the chips were no match for my hungry noming. My problem? I should have brought some healthy stuffs to the party. DUH! Fruit and veggies will always be gobbled up by party goers, even if it's not the first thing they think of. Have you ever noticed that? Set on the table a plate of cheese burgers and a veggie tray and folks will inevitably grab veggies for their plate. I'm not sure if it's guilt or what it is, but that's how it works. I, however, was so wrapped up in what was going wrong, that my proper planning self had taken a leave of absence and I had to simply rely upon what I'd grown up on. Cake, chips and ice cream = birthday party. That's what I learned, and that's where I fell back to.
So I nommed some chips at the party. And then I went home and had cake and ice cream for dinner. I don't remember much else from the night, but I do remember telling Hubs before bed, "I'm so frustrated with myself lately!" His response was simple - "Well, I guess we HAVE to hit the gym tomorrow."
Monday I got thrown another curveball. Training seminars all day. Trapped in a freezing room with about 20 other people nomming every horrible goodie they could put in front of us. Soda, coffee, danish, and CREAM PUFFS (wtf?) for breakfast. Lunch was sandwiches (finally, something that I could make work in my plan), pasta salad in a mayo-based sauce, brownies, cookies, and chips. C'est tout. Not a fruit or veggie in sight. I was completely disappointed. There wasn't even LETTUCE on the sandwiches, for crying out loud. I did well for a while. When I got hungry around 10am, I grabbed the Chobani I had brought with me. I stayed away from the soda and drank 1/2 a can of Kiwi Strawberry V8 drink and then water the rest of the day. But by the boring 3pm hour, I was back at that table for another sandwich and a brownie. I don't know if it was the girl's 30 minute talk on McDonald's Big Macs or the fact that she was throwing out candy (and my favorite peanut butter eggs) all over (I feared answering any question because she might put one in front of me!) but something made me snap and I just HAD to have a brownie. I hated it. I don't much care for brownies. Still, I ate the entire thing - trying to make it taste like the chocolate peanut butter egg I really wanted.
I got home early and instead of hitting the gym, I went straight home. It had been a long day, and I had managed to get through it relatively well. Trust me, it could have gone MUCH MUCH worse! I grabbed a sandwich from Subway (albeit a footlong, which I finished before I walked into the house) and sat on the couch with chips and dip and proceeded to not really taste any of it. (I hate when I do that!) Hubs mentioned how we HAD to go to the gym and I brushed him off and said we'd go tomorrow. My stomach felt horrible and I didn't want to sit on the stupid stationary bike for 30 minutes again. It made me feel like I was either really big, really lazy, or 80 years old. *sigh* (I know I have to break through that mental image...but I get REALLY bored with the stationary bike and barely manage to get my HR up unless I push SUPER hard.)
It's actually a good thing I had that extra time and had come home early, because I had a chance to correct myself later. Around 6 or 7, I turned to Hubs and asked him if he'd like to take the dog for a walk with me. We told the kids it was our time, and I found myself going "just a little bit farther" the whole time. As we got near the house it started to get dark. And throughout the whole walk, Hubs just let me talk, let me vent, let me say all the things I needed to say. He didn't contradict me or tell me I was wrong, he just listened (or, at least, pretended to! *lol*) the entire time. And I don't think I would've maintained self-control the rest of the night if it hadn't been for that walk. After the chips from before our walk, I didn't eat another thing and actually went to bed slightly hungry.
Yesterday was triage day. In my position as an investigator, whenever we get a new case or are about to close out a case we already have, we have to meet with a panel we call the "triage team" to discuss the case and make sure we're headed in the right direction. Problem is, because I'm new to this position, they often forget me or simply leave me to last. I'm sure they don't do it on purpose, but it means me sitting around waiting from 9am until whenever, not able to really go anywhere for fear of missing my time and having to wait until the next triage day (which could be later that week or the next week). Yesterday I hadn't packed a lunch and had planned a walk to the market to grab some soup and maybe a chicken salad sandwich. But by 12:30pm, I was still waiting, and completely hungry as I usually eat around 11:30am or noon. I finally couldn't take it anymore, and drove quickly to the market, picked out some stuffed red pepper soup and an egg salad sandwich on a croissant (I knew it wasn't the best decision, but the only other thing I could think of quickly was a trip through the drive-thru at Wendy's where I'd end up with a cheeseburger). I quickly drove back to the office and my lunch had to sit and wait because, sure enough, as soon as I left they called me in for triage and I had to hurry and get that done first. All of this meant that I scarfed down my food in that 'can barely taste it' way again because I was so hungry by 1pm I was like a dog that hadn't seen food in a week. Sad.
Yesterday everything came to a head. I broke down. I felt beaten. Between having your paycheck stolen from you and waiting on some investigator somewhere to prove that I couldn't be in two places at once. Between feeling violated and hurt and realizing that however hard you work, you only have 16 bucks in your account and you're back to relying upon your husband to keep fuel in your car. Between the stress of only getting to see Sarah for a few precious hours and her visit bringing up memories of the love I used to have surrounding me that no longer seems to be there (I'm left with AM, who I adore, but I need more!). Between realizing that her visit means that the wedding and trip to Utah are coming up soon, and I don't have a dress, I haven't hit the weight I wanted to be at, I don't have the money for the trip and all that stuff filling my head. Between realizing she's likely never coming back and realizing how much she means to me. Between the ED and not feeling worthy or pretty or anything really. I fell apart. I told as much to my husband in an email.
I asked for his forgiveness for not being the person I knew I could be. It was a long email full of self-pity and regret and sadness and I cried the entire time I wrote it, and after I sent it, and for a long time following. I felt lost. I wanted someone else to take over and lead my life because I felt like everything I was doing was wrong.
Maybe it's because he told me to STFU. (Exactly what he said.) Maybe because he wrote me a strikingly LONG email (which, for him, is like having him build the Taj Mahal for you) in which he explained that I was beautiful - that I was somehow blessed with a natural beauty that others could only dream of having. That losing weight only ENHANCED that beauty, but it could not make me beautiful because I already was. He built me up one word at a time...and not once did I detect in his email any frustration at my attitude (other than the last line that said something like: "Give up? HA! That's just not you.") or some flowery language in the hopes of making me happy. It was sincere from the depths of what he believed. He wasn't making things up or questioning how to respond, he just spoke, and I just listened...and I felt better. Not great, but better.
At the gym last night I cried again. Sadness as I sat on the stupid stationary bike and watched my classmates, my new friends who always said hello and smiled when I walked in do Zumba right in front of me. (I knew I should stay away from Zumba as soon as doc said, "If it hurts, don't do it." because Zumba hurts my pelvic muscles more than anything else I do - even more than running...because it's a hard constant pain throughout the entire hour session.) I started to cry and made myself stop. I had to just get through this 30 minutes and then I could just go home and cry there away from everyone. Hubs sat next to me, begrudging his bike in the same manner as I looked at him and said, "See! I told you so! These things SUCK!" He just smiled and kept peddling, telling me he'd only stop when I did. When the next Zumba song came on - the arm song, as I call it - I realized it had motions I COULD do. So I did them. Right there on the bike I did all the movements in the arm song. People looked at me funny, but I didn't care. My Zumba instructor saw me in the mirror and turned around and yelled across the gym asking me what was up. "I can't!" I yelled. "Doctor's orders." She smiled at me and turned back around and I felt a little better. That wasn't so bad. At least they knew the reason wasn't because I was a wimp or a cop-out or whatever. (That's what I fear most, it seems - other people's perception of me being wrong ...them thinking I can't when it's really that I shouldn't because it could hurt me. I don't ever want to come across as weak.)
With a numb butt and numb feet, Hubs and I made a couple laps around the track after our 30m "bike ride." I went into the boxing room and punched the bag a few times, messed around with the speedbag just being silly. I was finally smiling again. And Hubs just stood in the corner smiling at me.
Last night I ate a sensible dinner of the Tofu Kale Stir Fry that I learned how to make in Minnesota. I had one serving of ice cream later, forcing myself to put the container back before eating the second serving. I finished my water for the day and went to bed feeling a TINY bit more like myself.
This morning, I found this in my inbox from SP.
(can't add it as a link right now)
What this article doesn't tell you is that sometimes the bounce back isn't much like bouncing. It's a slow crawl. It's you, on your hands and knees, fingernails dug into the ground, grasping at any root you can find, pulling yourself with all your might out of the hole you've found yourself in. Sometimes it's as easy as a quick BOUNCE and you're back. But sometimes, it takes nerves of iron and the determination to believe that if you just keep grasping at anything you can, you'll eventually dig your way out. And sometimes it takes letting go and letting just one person in your life see and hear every single fear that haunts your mind every day. Sometimes it takes just them listening or a simple "STFU, you're wrong and you know it."
I'm not healed yet, but I'm finding my footing again. Sunday was not great. Monday was a tiny bit better. And yesterday was ALMOST good. I have high hopes for today, but I know it's not a given. I'm still holding on, though...
Oh, and two final quick notes.
1) I put my scale away. It's in exile. And I won't see it again until I'm mentally ready for it. It's not helping, so it doesn't fit into the plan. Right now I plan on weighing in on Sunday, but if I don't feel strong enough to do that, it can wait until Monday (my 1-year Sparkversary). And whatever it says then will not matter. It's another beginning. Another before picture. I have 6 days to convince myself of that.
2) I have my first appointment with the physical therapist next Thursday. I think this also helped pull me up yesterday because I know that they can help me achieve my goals if I let them try. When I was 16, I hated the PT. It was just another adult looking at me and assuming I was hurt because I was fat and telling me what to do. I didn't care. I wanted to be a kid. I didn't have time for it. Now I want it more than anything - someone to tell me just what I need to do, to give me the magic formula to make me all better and able to withstand the pressure I put on myself physically. I want help. And I've finally given myself permission to ASK for help. That's HUGE for me. And I can't wait to ask for more on the 21st.
(Ironically, this Thursday is a meeting with the OTHER PT, who is seriously pissing me off because, while she could be a good resource, she treats me like a burden and it makes me want to scream. She could be giving me a great workout routine that's easy on the pelvic/hip region, but I really just want to punch her in the face and move on. It's so frustrating how she speaks to me and I wish I would've known this before all this started. Not that I have a choice...she's the only one at my gym...but at least I would've known better than to think this would be a great thing. *sigh*)
EDIT: And yesterday, yes, I ate myself a wonderful peanut butter egg and LOVED it. Sometimes indulging is necessary - just make sure it's the RIGHT thing...and savor it!
Sunday, April 10, 2011
Weight today: 325.6 pounds
And today we start again. Like we do every day. But I need today to be different. Yes, times have been hard...but I will be HARDER. I will fight and make this happen because I LIKE who I'm becoming, and I want to be the girl that goes out for a hike, who likes to have fun - ACTIVE fun. I want to reach my goals and I don't want to waste my time thinking about where I'm not for the sake of not achieving what I could achieve if I thought about what I could do TODAY to get there.
The plan is simple.
Workouts - 30m cardio - ANY cardio - M-Saturday
30m ST 3x a week
Consume 1900-2200 calories a day
Drink 8-10 glasses of water per day
PLAN! for the week
Sunday - OFF
Monday - 30m Stationary Bike or Cardio Circuit, ST
Tuesday - Zumba, if possible, at least 30m
Wednesday - 30m Stationary Bike or Cardio Circuit, ST
Thursday - Zumba, if possible, at least 30m
Friday - 30m Stationary Bike or Cardio Circuit, ST
Saturday - Boxing Lesson #4
Food for the Week
Kale Tofu Stir Fry with Brown Rice
Count EVERY calorie.
Measure! Measure! Measure!
I'm pretending today is the day I start SP. I can say one thing about this past week or so. I ate off plan. I didn't follow it exactly. I overate some days. But I hovered around the same weight all the time. If I can maintain in the crappy way I'm doing now, then losing shouldn't be so hard.
Weight Goal for next week - 323 pounds
Hopefully by the end of April I'm back to 320 and ready to move down beyond that.
If I keep working hard, I can be in Deuceland by the wedding in July. I don't care if I'm 299, I just want to be in DEUCELAND by then.
That's 3 months and 26 pounds. 14 weeks. About 2 pounds a week.
It's a good goal, and I have to remember that every day I work toward it is a day of winning.
1900-2200 calories a day.
30m of cardio 6x a week (even if it's just a walk with the dog)
30m of ST 3x a week
8-10 glasses of water a day
It's not about how many pounds I've lost.
It's not about how many pounds I could've lost.
It's about today. Doing my best TODAY.
Working the program each and every day.
Doing the best that I can.
Maybe my body needed the time off my mind demanded.
But today is THE DAY to get going again.
Nine years ago today I was nearly bedridden and had bad PPD.
I didn't care about much of anything concerning what I wanted my life to be like.
My baby had been born and I just wanted to disappear into a wall with him.
It was a special, but a sad time.
Today my baby is 9 years old. (He turned 9 on Tuesday.)
He is strong. He cares about "fueling his body" with food.
He knows about treats in moderation.
He loves to workout with me. He's training to be a great athlete - a football player.
He loves doing 5ks and 10ks and he never considers that he has to run them. Walking them is enough for him because he knows that finishing is all that matters.
And I was the one who helped teach those values to him. *pride*
Let me get this out - today is going to be a challenge.
Party today for his birthday includes cake, ice cream, chips and cookies.
I MUST ignore them all.
I must focus on the weight bench in the corner and remember that eating cake today will not help me achieve my goals.
I don't NEED cake. I already had some this week.
I don't need chips. I already had some this week.
And I have ice cream here at home that will fit into my plan just fine. I can have a serving every single night if I want, if I fit it into my plan.
Yesterday he begged for bacon and sausage to go with some eggs and toast.
But he bought turkey bacon. Yes, HE picked that out. I can be smart and still enjoy this family meal.
Don't make it more difficult than it is, Esther.
It either fits in the plan or it doesn't.
This isn't a diet, it's life. Live it smartly!
Saturday, April 09, 2011
Thank you all for your comments on my Step 1 blog. Yes, my head has been a mess. And, yes, I've been thinking over what I can do to get past that. I haven't worked out in two days. I haven't been following any plan other than thinking on what I can do to change where I'm at and figuring out what my reasons are for continuing. Sometimes it's important to step back and remember life before and life now so you can see where your life is going.
Let's address the first issue - devaluing myself.
HEATHER_TEACHAH said it best. "Esther, do you think this is a projection because YOU undervalue YOU as a person? "If I can't run, I"m nothing. If I can't stand to be alone/juggle 1000 things/balance kids and health/etc then I'm nothing.." ???"
She's right. I fear that others undervalue me because I undervalue myself. But...why?
Would I think my sister, who has MS and is using running as a way to fight back, is nothing if she suddenly couldn't run anymore? No.
Do I think people in my life like Chad, who is in a wheelchair and can never run, and my uncle Doug, whose MS is so bad it makes it difficult sometimes for him to even walk, are nothing or less than something great because they can't run? No.
Do I search out people on SP who don't run for whatever reason, ability or choice, and think they are doing less than great because they don't run? No.
So why do I do that to myself?
Part of it is because I want to run so badly.
But is my running CAN'T something mental. Is it focused on my not wanting to run? No.
I cannot run right now, because of an injury I've sustained while trying to do so.
Yes, weight is likely a factor in that. My body is broken and hurt from years of inactivity.
But I have tried time and time again. And I deserve to give myself credit for that.
Doc says it's not my hip that's the problem, it's my pelvis. She believes I've overstretched the muscle there and it's not fitting together right because of the overstretching. So when I run, it does its best to compensate, but after a while it just can't make the connections go right anymore and I get that pain - my body's way of telling me that it isn't ready. She wants me to spend the next 6-8 weeks in PT with a group that handles Sports Medicine. She did not once attribute my failure to run to my weight, and made me seem like this could've happened if I weighed 150 pounds or 500. My body needs help, and I need to give it that. For the next couple weeks, I'm to focus on low-impact workouts. "If it hurts the pelvic muscles, don't do it," she said. It could mean saying goodbye to Zumba for awhile. And she certainly said no more "pounding the pavement." She did not say not to run, but I'm taking a couple weeks off to be safe, she only said use the treadmill. I need soft landings for myself right now. She encouraged use of the stationary bike and warned me to be careful of pain on the elliptical as well.
So, if the next two months, I do not run one tenth of a mile, does that make me less of a success story?
Truth? It does NOT have to. There are plenty of other things I can do.
Maybe some rowing
ST like nuts
MAYBE Yoga (though I don't want to overstretch again)
(BTW - I got a compliment from my doctor on my flexibility as well. *lol*)
So why do I continue to believe I don't belong or I'm not doing enough if I can't run?
I said it so well to my husband the other day -- I don't strive to be good, okay, adequate, or any of that. I strive to be AMAZING and ASTOUNDING and MOVING. I want to lead the pack. I need to show people that I can break their expectations of what I should be able to do.
And I know it all stems from those same old unloved and abandoned issues from my childhood. I had to work 3x as hard as anyone else to get any sort of reaction out of my father. Mistakes were punished with spankings and beatings. Good enough or okay were met with no reaction at all. Great was grunted at. But astounding would get some sort of reaction that I was finally good enough in his eyes. I got all As. Hrmph. Okay. I got all As and was the top in my class and won an award. I got a good job. I was always looking for the "good job." It's stupid and sappy, but I wanted to feel like my father loved me...and what I mostly felt was that he tolerated me most days and hated me a good majority of the others. No child should have to try that hard for acceptance from a parent. And it took me 20 years to finally realize that I would never get what I needed from him and cut him off completely.
Most of the rest of my family thought highly of me. I was the smart girl who did well in school. I was good and didn't get into trouble. And then I got knocked up in my senior year of high school and was suddenly the outcast. I don't know if they put me there or I did, but I think we all played a role in it.
I settled with feeling unloved for a long time. It took me years to feel like I finally got my family back to a place of acceptance and love for me. (Odd because I know in my heart they always loved me, but I was still clinging to that notion that they were disappointed which somehow = unloved.)
And then I fought back.
I got married to my children's father.
I found a place to live far away where I could rebuild myself.
I wanted to come back and surprise them.
I worked full-time and went to school full-time and worked part-time as a journalist.
And I felt I had earned more love back.
But I knew I had to succeed in all areas to get it fully (or at least in my mind that was the requirement).
I got "good jobs" from my editors.
I managed to fill the role of President in two honor societies at school.
I made the Dean's List every semester.
And then I graduated in just 3 years, summa cum laude and #1 in my class in my department.
I got promotions at work and worked my way into a suitable career. (Though still not what I ever wanted to do...but I felt it was worthy because of the title it held.)
Only then did I feel the need to hold my head up again.
Is it no wonder I did that again with the weight loss.
A girl who loses 95 pounds = good.
A girl who is still over 300 pounds but works out all the time and is motivated to keep losing = great.
But a girl who was still over 300 pounds and could run a 5k, 10k, and half-marathon would = astounding and worthy of love.
Nobody ever told me that.
I made those rules.
Every time I felt that pull in my pelvis, it was like saying "they won't love you because you're proving to them that you're still too fat to do something."
And if it were anyone else I would tell them - that is ridiculous! You are STILL amazing because you're trying. Even if you never lose a pound. Even if you only work out 3 times a week. Even if you can't do more than 1 push-up. You are trying, and that is amazing.
But, for some reason, I couldn't do that for myself.
I always felt like it wasn't enough because I wasn't shocking people.
I couldn't amaze them with my determination and my ability to run, so it wasn't enough.
I wasn't enough.
And that's where I sat.
The past few days I've been struggling with what IS good enough.
Last night I created another account. A way to wipe the slate clean.
I wanted to try to be the kind of person who was okay with what I could do (or as I told myself "with the LITTLE I could do").
I wanted to be the kind of person who just does what she can and still loses weight and is successful without having to be AMAZING in those standards I set for myself in order to be amazing.
Changing children is somewhat easy.
Over time, the same treatment toward them can develop into their minds a standard for living that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives.
Even after they deem you no longer worthy to set those standards, you've set them and that will follow them through life.
What I'm hoping is the rest of that statement is, "Unless they figure out what's going on and decide to change it themselves."
We like to say, "You can't change people." But I think you can.
What I'm hoping is that WE can change OURSELVES too.
I need to develop new patterns of dealing with myself. New standards for success. And I need to let go of my childish fear that good enough isn't good enough because it isn't the astounding I was taught to strive for.
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