Tuesday, December 11, 2012
This is mainly unrelated to weight loss, but it's something that is very important to me and I feel like I need to share it. It's quite long, but I'd appreciate it if you took time to read it. Thank you :)
I know I mostly write about my health, nutrition and fitness and leave other personal stuff outside my blog, but I sometimes want to share some other aspects of myself with you. As I have gone through this transformation, I have changed not only on the outside but on the inside as well. I have become more confident and I feel like I have a much better idea of what my dreams and goals are in life. I used to belittle them, tell myself they're not that important or that I'm not good enough to pursue them. But ever since last February when I first decided to change my life (not just the weight but the whole package) I have noticed a change in myself. I'm still a work in progress but I feel like I'm a lot closer to reaching my dreams as I was a year ago.
I've said it before so some of you may already know this, but one of my biggest dreams in life has always been to become a writer. I have been writing poems and stories since I was six years old, and when the teacher asked the kids in my class what we wanted to be when grow up, I told her I wanted to be a writer. Even though I've always known this, somewhere along the way I began to lose sight of this dream. I would think about writing every day but never wrote a single line. That would KILL me and I always felt so guilty about it. I knew I wanted to write, I needed to... but I just didn't have the drive. I was tired, lost and there were times when I was even downright depressed. I didn't know what I wanted. I started my English studies at Uni but took a leave after just one year to figure out what I wanted to do. I wanted to do something creative, I wanted to write, but I felt like I wasn't good enough.
I then spent two years working as a freelance journalist, writing poems or short stories occasionally. I took journalism classes online and then I applied to another school where I studied hotel management. I felt like I was at my wit's end. I was completely lost. I didn't know what I wanted - well, actually, I knew I wanted to write but besides that, I had no idea. I felt like I was drifting further and further away from my dream and the person I was meant to be. I didn't like any of my classes and I just felt like I didn't belong there. I had NEVER, ever in my life dreamed of working in the hotel management / hospitality field. It's definitely not me. In retrospect, I just drifted around aimlessly and ended up at that particular school because it was so close to where me and my boyfriend lived.
I decided I needed to change. I needed to step up and stop running away from my one true passion. I needed to stop running away from me. I had a talk (actually, many very lengthy conversations) with my boyfriend and I decided to quit the school I was studying at and go back to Uni where I had previously been studying English. I know this is all very confusing but let me explain. I decided to change my major from English to Literature. And that's what I've been studying now for the past months, and let me tell you, I'M LOVING IT!
I feel so blessed to have finally found a place where I belong. I love studying literature, and it's even helping me work on my own writing as well. I have been writing poems and working on a novella that I hope to be ready by the end of the month. I feel like I'm exactly where I need to be. Previously I felt like my life was not my own, but now it absolutely is. Without my detours I would have graduated already, but you know what? It's all been worth it. I've learned so much about myself along the way and I know it was all for the best. I'm here now, and that's all that matters.
My goal is to get accepted to the Creative Writing program and pick that as my minor next year. I also plan to make a collection of my poems and send that to a few publishers here in Finland. I WILL BECOME A WRITER ONE DAY, a published writer. That has always been my dream and I'm willing to work very hard for it. I've come a long way already. (Oh, and if my writing seems incoherent or not "good enough" for a writer, it's just because as most of you know English isn't my native language, Finnish is. And that is also the language I'm writing in.)
Anyway, I just wanted to share this with you as it is very important to me. I feel like this is directly related to SparkPeople and the changes I have made in my life since I joined here. I want to thank all of you for being such supportive and wonderful friends to me! Your support means everything.
Monday, December 10, 2012
So today has been a long, busy day. I woke up early, worked on my essay, went to class and turned the essay in, came home, made lunch (I only had one class today), studied for an exam, worked on another essay, finished reading Hamlet, and now it's 11 pm and I'm about to finish my paper on Shakespeare's sonnets before going to bed. This week is going to be crazy busy as I said before, but I know I'll find a way to get everything done. After the week is over, it's Christmas break and I can relax!
I know it's tempting to make unhealthy choices when you're busy or stressed out. Quick (often unhealthy) meals, skipping workouts and sleeping too little may seem tempting when there are a million things going on and not enough time. It's all about priorities: I choose to take care of my body in the middle of all of what's going on because I know I need to. It's my number one priority. I will find at least 30 minutes a day for exercise and another 30 minutes for tracking my meals and updating my blog. I will spend 30 minutes twice a week planning my meals because I know I deserve that time and devotion. My health is well worth it. Not to mention my sanity! I know I'll be a lot more able to deal with periods of high stress when I'm taking good care of myself. Exercise is a must! Even if it's just a short, brisk walk it's better than staying at the desk all day long!
I'm really trying my best to put my health first. I know I didn't get enough sleep last night and that very rarely happens for me. I hate it when I feel sleep deprived and I'm making a promise to myself that from now on I'll plan out everything and make weekly schedules to make sure I don't leave everything to the last minute.
Other than being busy with school, I ate healthy today and met all my nutritional goals. I also walked for an hour. Now I should get back to writing that paper before I get some sleep.
Me just now, messy hair and ready for bed :)
Hope all of you had a wonderful Monday!
Saturday, December 08, 2012
Today I updated my weight tracker. I've changed my goal weight a number of times: when I first started, my goal was to get down to 56 kgs (123 lbs) which would have meant a total loss of 30 kilograms (66 lbs). In the summer, a few months after I started, I started feeling really good about my body and decided I didn't want to lose quite as much weight as I originally planned, and changed my goal weight to 60 kgs (132 lbs). As my motivation began to disappear and I really did not feel like losing a lot more weight (and I was actually pretty content with my current appearance), I changed it yet again to 66 kgs (145 lbs) which would have put me to a total loss of 20 kilograms instead of the original 30 that I planned to lose.
HOWEVER, now that I am back at it again and feeling stronger than ever, I decided that I wanted to do this right once and for all. Before I gained all this weight, I consistently weighed about 120 lbs. I call this my "natural weight". Ever since I gained a lot of weight, I've always wanted to get back to where I was. I haven't weighed that little since I was 16 years old - that's when the binge eating started. I decided I really want to reach that "natural weight" again once and for all! I'm going to give it a try. If at some point along my journey I feel like I do not want to or need to lose any more weight, I won't. But for now, my new goal is to get down to about 120 lbs.
I'm excited about this!! I'm filled with this amazing energy and I'm going to channel it into building momentum for weeks and months to come. I know I can do this. We all can!
Friday, December 07, 2012
This has been a very good week for me. I have been tracking everything I eat and I've stayed within my calorie range and met my nutritional goals every day. EVEN TODAY, which is Friday! That doesn't happen often for me! Weekend has always, in some way, meant over-indulging in some of my favorite treats, but this time I enjoyed them in moderation only. And I feel so much better for it! I still got to have some chocolate but I didn't go over my calories.
This week, I...
...lost 4 pounds!
...tried a few healthy, new recipes such as chicken pita with low fat tzatziki and veggies, low-calorie version of the Count of Monte Cristo Sandwich, carrot slaw with apples and grapes, and Pesto Bella Burgers (most of the recipes were from the SparkPeople Cookbook).
...baked whole grain flaxseed rolls which were so good!
...burned 1800 calories.
...felt really happy, calm and in control.
...GOT MY SPARK BACK!
All in all, it's been a great week. It's always easy in the beginning but this time I promise I won't start slacking even when (notice I said when, not "if"; we're human, we're not perfect) setbacks happen or when I'm feeling unmotivated. You just have to push through it and you'll eventually find a way to get your Spark back.
Have a great Friday everyone! :)
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