Tuesday, August 21, 2012
A little over 2 years ago, I saw the number 298 on the scale. I found this number utterly overwhelming. I knew I could not keep letting that number climb, but I didn't know where to begin. I already enjoyed exercise, but I was debilitated by a bad right knee and could hardly do any exercise. On the other hand, I knew my knee would probably get better if I lost some weight. So, I slowly started picking away at my eating habits and my thought processes. I started to learn how to stop feeling guilty about everything and to love myself instead.
For the first time in my life, neither food nor weight define me. Being an athlete defines me. My life revolves around exercise and training, not around the number on the scale. I have "only" lost about 60 pounds in 2 years, a number which I know to many may seem rather small. However, at no point have I made any major effort to "diet." Those 60 pounds have come off by making small changes and without me having to turn my life upside down to lose the weight. The weight will continue to come off, and for that I am happy...but then again, I have learned to be happy despite my weight.
Near highest weight (290+ pounds in these pictures).
Most recent progress pictures (although it is from March 2012--gotta get some new ones!)--around 240 pounds.
The biggest life-changer over the past year has been Jiu Jitsu. There is the workout factor--Jiu Jitsu works everything...and I mean everything. I trembled and gasped like I never have before when I first started. Grappling is unlike anything else, and rolling (sparring) against another person adds intensity that just isn't there with other workouts. I feel stronger and am more flexible than I have ever been.
I have also found that I am actually a decent grappler and did pretty well in my first competition, taking second place in my division (the winner was a woman who was significantly more experienced, but I crushed everyone else on my level). I had shed the "I'm the fat girl" mentality and started training and acting like an athlete, and the guys at my gym treat me like an athlete. Anyone who thinks they are too heavy to be an athlete has to remember that it isn't how others view you, it's how you view yourself. It's like I've said before, if you think and train like an athlete, then you are an athlete.
The best dudes around! I wouldn't haven't gotten this far without these guys in my corner.
You truly can be an athlete (and a winner) at any weight. More pictures from the tournament in this blog post: www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
I don't want to think of where I would be without SparkPeople. I started in a very dark place, and picked away until I started seeing glimmers of light. From there, the light started pouring in. I can't wait to see what I can accomplish over the next year.
Very proud moment!
Sunday, August 19, 2012
I have been trying to hammer out a blog for a couple of weeks and it just ain't happening. So, I will post a super-quick update blog.
I just haven't felt much like blogging recently, but I hadn't realized that I hadn't written an update blog in about 6 weeks, since my Jiu Jitsu tournament. I have mostly been in a holding pattern...no change in weight (hey, still better than going up), eating has mostly been good, still pretty consistent with workouts. I was a little down for a couple of weeks, and there was some overeating involved. I tend to get depressed in the summer, like most people do in the middle of winter, but have been feeling more myself again.
I have also undertaken a massive reorganization project at my house. I have mostly cleaned out my basement, which has been a monumental task, and mostly cleaned my front and back porches. My goal is to have my house completely in order by the time fall starts, and I am well on my way to that goal. I will talk more about the organization in another blog. In any case, I am very happy to be more organized and to get rid of stuff I don't need.
Jiu Jitsu is going well. I feel like I am continuing to improve and am retaining more information when we learn new moves. I could stand to be doing more strength training, as I have only been averaging 1 strength training workout per week. My goal is to do at least 2, ideally 3 strength training/kettlebell workouts each week. Despite not being very good about formal strength training, my upper body is actually getting pretty ripped. This is partially thanks to Jiu Jitsu and I have been doing modified pull-ups at home, which seem to be helping.
Anyways, just wanted to post a quick blog with an update. So, yes, I am still alive. The blog post I was working on is mostly about this organizing I have been doing, will hopefully post it this week.
Hope all is well in your worlds, SparkFriends!
Monday, August 13, 2012
Weightlifter Sarah Robles.
I often feel out of place calling myself an athlete. This isn't as much the case as it used to be, but sometimes I feel like I'm in a game of "Which One Doesn't Belong?" Granted, I don't feel like I'm treated this way (at least not anymore), but I still feel a bit awkward in my martial arts classes. I don't often see other big martial artists, especially women. I do my best not to show how awkward I feel with all of these very trim athletes I train with, but sometimes I would like to see another serious athlete who also happens to be very overweight.
I didn't follow the Olympics terribly closely, but I did follow the journey of American weightlifter Sarah Robles. She weighs 275 pounds and has been touted as "the strongest woman in America." I have never adored an athlete more in my whole life. She persisted through training with little sponsorship, the ultimate in "if you want it, go and get it." She placed 7th when she competed on August 5th, and I am very proud of her.
I also love her because she makes no apologies for her body size. Sarah has advocated that fitness wear manufacturers produce clothing to fit every athlete. She has been outspoken about the fact that athletes can come in every shape and size. I look at her and I see a bit of myself (not that I'm an Olympian, though!), and I am grateful that she has come to the forefront. I think this is just the beginning for Sarah, and I can't wait to see more.
Check out her blog here:
Image from thinkprogress.org/politics/2012/07/0
ic-weightlifter-sarah-robles/ ; I would recommend reading the article, it talks about how Sarah deserves major sponsorship.
Sunday, August 12, 2012
Hmmm, it has been a while since I have blogged. I have not been posting a "Week in Review" blog like I should, but I am working on a blog post. In the meantime, I came across this "50 Things About Me" deal on BAZOOKABOBCAT's blog and it looks fun, so here it is:
1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE?
Nope! Came close to being named "Gladys" after my great grandmother, though.
2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED?
Haha, probably at some point over the past week. I'm like a little kid, I cry if I'm frustrated or upset in any way.
3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING?
It's all right.
4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE LUNCH MEAT?
I'm a vegetarian, so none!
5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS?
No, and I don't plan on having any.
6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU?
Probably. I'd like to think I do my best to be there for my friends.
7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT?
8. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS?
9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP?
I'm afraid of heights, including standing on a ladder, so probably not.
10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE CEREAL?
11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF?
12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG?
13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM?
Soy Delicious Peanut Butter Zigzag.
14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE?
Their body language/posture--can tell a lot from that first glimpse.
15. RED OR PINK?
16. WHAT IS THE LEAST FAVORITE THING ABOUT YOURSELF?
I don't like when I'm not consistent with healthy eating or exercise.
17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST?
My older brother Brian, who died at the age of 8 in a car accident (I was 5).
18. WHAT IS THE PAUL MCKENNA TECHNIQUE THAT YOU NEED TO WORK ON THE MOST?
19. ANY TATTOOS?
7 of 'em...
19. WHAT COLOR SHOES ARE YOU WEARING?
20. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE?
A protein shake after my workout.
21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW?
The quiet between phone calls at work.
22. IF YOU WERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOR WOULD YOU BE?
23. FAVORITE SMELLS?
Thunderstorms, chocolate, coffee, rose, vanilla, jasmine, lavender, and lemon.
24. WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE?
A rude pet owner.
25. MOUNTAIN HIDEAWAY OR BEACH HOUSE?
Wow, super tough choice. Probably beach house--preferably with a view of mountains.
26. FAVORITE SPORTS TO WATCH?
27. HAIR COLOR?
28. EYE COLOR?
29. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS?
30. FAVORITE FOOD?
If I had to pick an all-time never-going-to-give-it-up item, it would have to be black coffee.
31. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS?
32. LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED?
Not technically a movie, but watching "Breaking Bad" on Netflix.
33. WHAT COLOR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING?
None, wearing a purple dress.
34. SUMMER OR WINTER?
35. HUGS OR KISSES?
36. FAVORITE DESSERT?
Anything with chocolate.
37. STRENGTH TRAINING OR CARDIO?
I like to pump it up, baby!
38. COMPUTER OR TELEVISION?
39. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW?
40. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD?
42. FAVORITE SOUND?
The sound of my dog eating fruit ot veggies (makes the cutest crunching sounds).
43. ROLLING STONES OR BEATLES?
44. WHAT IS THE FARTHEST YOU HAVE BEEN FROM HOME?
45. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT?
I do an excellent impression of a cat vomiting up a hairball--always impresses on first dates.
46. WHERE WERE YOU BORN?
Mountain View, California.
47. WHERE ARE YOU LIVING NOW?
48. WHAT COLOR IS YOUR HOUSE?
49. WHAT COLOR IS YOUR CAR?
50. DO YOU LIKE ANSWERING 50 QUESTIONS?
Are we done yet?
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
I came across an article discussing mindful eating, which is kind of what I talked about in my blogs a couple of weeks ago ("The Impossible").
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