Monday, September 17, 2012
I thought I'd keep track of my progress (or lack thereof, but let's not think about that yet) in weekly updates.
I am not sure I can see improvements in any aspects after this week. I have had a couple really bad days, pain-wise, mostly because I have felt bad about not helping out with a kitchen renovation at home and I've tried to lift something, carry something or just wield a paint brush. Live and learn. Moving on.
Anyway, spent a considerable amount of time resting. In too much pain to do my physical therapy on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday. Forgot my breathing exercises on most days, I'm just too stressed (renovation, moving) to remember to relax and just breathe. Vicious circle, that.
Forgot my back pillow at work on several days and had to spend the train ride home (and to work the next day) standing up, because I still can't sit more than 10 minutes or so. Unless I take some of the good pills, which I prefer to not do in public, because it makes me feel like a junkie.
[Starting to feel like Dr House]
In conclusion: this has been a bad week. Much pain, much overdoing it with things I know better than to do, three skipped PT sessions, no reduction of pain medication (quite the contrary, I suppose).
Ok. Onwards. Today is Monday. I can do better.
I like this photo (not mine, unfortunately). It's a little moody, which is how I am feeling right now.
Monday, September 10, 2012
Those two words are so loaded with all sorts of meanings. Some good, some less so.
For me, I think I need some distance from the past. Doesn't mean I will leave behind the knowledge and experience I've gleaned from the journey thus far. Just that there is a whole lot of disappointment, guilt, negativity, crushed hopes and expectations that are weighing me down.
Quite literally, as it were. And I need to not let it aymore.
I need a clean slate of sorts. I need to let go of these past 15 months, take a deep breath, forgive myself for some failures, and forgive the universe for its harshness. I need to find acceptance in who I am NOW, what my life looks like NOW, what my limitations are and what my future might look like, or might not.
The last 15 months have been all about injuries, a foot fracture, a hip inflammation and since April and terribly bad acute lumbago. It is slowly getting better, I can now walk and do some light PT. During this injured time I have gained back all the weight I lost since joining SP (about 20 pounds).
A new challenge is starting up and one of the tasks for this week is outlining 5 goals for the duration of the challenge and the way to achieve them. I'd like to do this a little differently, by outlining short and long term goals.
Short term goals:
I am hopful that there will come a day soon when I'll be able to
possibly even bend without too much pain.
These are feasible goals. Both my chiro and my physical therapist think so. That day is not here yet, though. I have my exercises, I have my schedule and my treatment appointments. I need to trust in this process and not let unreasonable expectations derail me.
Long term goals:
[This is where I start feeling a little depressed.]
* I love running. Right now five running steps sends me to bed, reaching for my pain pills. But maybe one day? Neither the PT or my chiro make any promises.
* I can't leave my house without a special back pillow to support my lower back in case I need to sit down. I'd like to be able to do without it in a pinch. Right now, if I don't have it I won't be able to sit more than maybe 5 minutes. I have one at work and that's okay. I have a few at home in strategic places and that's okay too. But having to carry one around? Not so much fun. We'll see.
* I'd like to reduce the amount of pain pills I need to take. I am now taking one prescription pill (tylenol with codeine 4) and two OTC pills on most days (much, MUCH improved over the past five months). I'd like to do without the prescription pills, especially.
* I'd like to be able to ride my road racing bike again. That means being able to bend, so that is step one (and a short term goal), but I also need to strengthen my back (which will involve harder strength training than I am cleared for at the moment. I need to be patient and wait.
[I am not good at waiting.]
My program looks like this per my physical therapist's orders:
- walking a minimum of 45 min/day
- gentle strength training (floor exercises) 15 min/day
- breathing exercises to learn to relax my torso (which is in constant tension, for some reason).
Back to the starting over bit.
I think giving myself permission to "start over" will help me adjust my expectations, help me be gentler and more forgiving to myself. I am my own harshest critic, and it is not doing anything good for me at the moment. At a time when I need patience and caring, antyhing that will push me harder is more likely to just set me back more.
So. Not back at square one (OMG, I am so far from square one that I can't even imagine where that square is! That person who was at square one a couple of years ago doesn't even exist anymore.), but trying to accept who I am now, what I can and cannot do right now, and what I want to achieve short term and long term.
That is all.
Monday, November 14, 2011
I feel like it should say "Take 2" in the title. 'Cause that is essentially what this is. This will be my second attempt at Chalean Extreme and for a few different reasons I expect it to go better this time around.
I tried the program in April 2010. This was a few weeks after I had finished my first round of Insanity. Now, everyone who knows me knows how much I LOVE Insanity. And Shaun T.
And Chalean just didn't measure up. I was in really good shape after Insanity and I was a serious endorphin junkie to boot (how can you be anything else if you want to get through Insanity), so for me Chalean was s-l-o-w, wussy and kind of cheerleader-like perky. Ugh. I missed the gritty determination of Shaun T (not to mention that sexy voice, beautiful body and face and, well, GROWL .... ) and I missed being pushed, challenged, brought to the brink of exhaustion.
However, life has been an obstacle course in the past 5 months, starting with a foot fracture in June. 2.5 months of no exercise, bad diet (I am a recovering bulimic and exercise addict - so not a good combination with an injury), resulting in complete loss of stamina, strength and a 5 kilo weight gain. Jesus.
Getting back on track has been so very difficult. I started running again, but immediately the blasted bursitis (my nemesis from the winter of 2010) resurfaced and I had to revise my plans. I have been power walking a lot, bike riding and doing some strength training, but it's been too little to have any significant effect on either my fitness level or my weight.
I figured that since my fitness level is deplorable compared to the last time I tried the program, that it would prove to be more of a challenge this time around. I have also purchased some heavier weights. I now have 2, 4, 5, 6 and 8 kg dumbbells. (4.4/8.8/11/13.2/17.6 lbs) and will look into getting 10 kg (22 lbs) weights.
It's been some time since I did Insanity, so maybe I won't be comparing Chalene to Shaun T as much either. I will work on not letting her annoy me.
Today was Day 1. And it was okay. I worked up a bit of a sweat, the set of weights I have seem to work for now and I didn't cuss at Chalene to shut up and get on with things every few minutes... I still don't think that she pushes enough. I still get annoyed when she says it's okay to stop anywhere between 10-12 reps, instead of encouraging to do more, to try harder.
This is definitely a program suitable for beginners, which I am NOT, regardless of my current level of fitness. I was a gym rat for years and years and feel very comfortable around weights, machines and testing my limits.
Still, what I need right now is a program I will follow, not get bored with and which will allow me to build up my fitness level at a safe pace. Hopefully this program will help me with all that.
Tomorrow is a rest day according to the Chalean program (no big surprise there - told ya; wussy... ) so I will ride my bike. I got one of these recently, so now I can ride year round. www.tacx.com/producten/ergotrainers/
flow/index.dot I am very happy with this product, it's silent, and very light weight so it's easy to move the bike and I like the display.
Updates will follow, so stay tuned!
Monday, September 19, 2011
Welcoming the FALL!
The year so far has been full of ups and downs. Most recently a series of downs, but the only way is forward, so that is what I am going to do.
Pick myself up, dust myself off and MOVE.
I gained some of the weight back (okay, a lot of it) over the summer as I was letting my foot heal from a fracture. I lost all of my endurance and stamina.
Basically I am on square one. Familiar spot, this one.
The optimism I felt in the beginning of the year has turned into muted determination. I know how to lose weight, after all, I have done it many times. I also, apparently, know really well how to gain it back.
Time to change some patterns, me thinks. No time like the present.
Time to find other ways to boost and/or reflect my mood and general well-being than comfort foods.
Time to realize that, yes, I lost the level of fitness I worked so incredibly hard for, and, no, it's not fair. But I need to just let it go. Suck it up. Move on. I achieved it once, I can do it again.
The scale stands at 81 kilos. WHOA BOY. 178.2 pounds. That's a 10 pound weight gain since mid-June. Normally this is the point where I would start berating myself, wallowing in self-loathing and recrimination.
Not this time. So, I lost control. I can regain it.
I will get back to my running, I will be able to pass the Haagen Dazs shelf in the store and not crumble. I will start paying attention to what I eat and how much.
Starting right now. Isn't the first step admitting that there is a problem? Check. The second step to identify the way forward? Check. The third is to just do it, right? Ch... um, yeah, not quite there yet.
But I will get there. Just watch me. Or better yet -- join me!
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