So, I feel the need to reflect after what was, for me, an amazing victory this morning.
I grew up always feeling bigger than other girls. And for the most part I was. I was always one of the tallest in my class, it seemed clothes like jackets never fit right, always tight in the shoulders (I just decided yesterday that I think I might actually have broad shoulders...not sure. How does one know? well if I did I didn't know it then). I was actually in dance, tap and ballet, some jazz from about 4 years old to 9 y.o. After a year or two I went to just ballet. I was the youngest girl on toe (that's what I've always called it, but really it's en pointe or something lol). My dance partner Mandy was 15 I think. Poor girl. But, I loved it and was devastated when I had to stop classes. My grandpa had even put in a bar (barre?) down in our basement for me to practice with. Now even at this point I was not one of the skinniest little dancers. I don't think I was even husky yet. I was a good proportionate size, but with being tall and all I always felt bigger. My legs weren't toothpicks - they were...shapely. I even remember my grandma telling me once not to let anyone ever tell me my legs were to big haha. Anyway...Oh yeah, and me even doing ballet on toe was I guess an accomplishment, according to my mom, because when I was born my feet were curved and I had to wear casts on them for a while when I was a baby. We think this is why I've always had problems with severe foot cramps, sometimes calf cramps. My WHOLE life. It'd happen in ballet, or when I'd be swimming, while sleeping, etc.
Growing up I could never keep up with my big sister. During the summers she rode her bike everywhere, I could never keep up. I wasn't good at anything physical in school. I was the last person to do a mile "run" in elementary school, which consisted of me giving it my all...but mostly walking. I pretty much gave up on being active because I just thought I wasn't good at it, I just wasn't an athlete. I didn't realize that I had a form of asthma (exercise induced, aka reactive airway disease). That's one reason I got out of breath so fast. I couldn't push myself long enough to get better at anything. Also, as an adult I've discovered I'm a competitive perfectionist. WHAT??? I always thought I was a lazy procrastinating slacker. But I finally figured out the reason I never competed is because losing was SO hard for me to deal with. If I didn't win something I felt worthless and like a loser, so I just stopped trying at pretty much everything. Lame.
Also, my mom has always been overweight (well, not in her younger years, but as far back as my memory goes - probably the whole having kids thing). She tried a few crazy diets. I remember one where we ate dry toast, cottage cheese and canned beets. Oh and some plain tuna. And there was Herbalife. There was slimfast. Who knows what else. She was always unhappy too. My parents got divorced when I was 4 and I really think that made a big difference. Looking back I feel like that was when she gave up on a lot of stuff. BUT NOT going into all that on here. The point is that I always assumed, since my mom and I looked more alike than my mom and sister, that I would end up just like her. Overweight and unhappy, and divorced.
So that's the mindset I was working with throughout life. I'm a lazy loser who sucks at doing everything and I'm destined to be fat and unhappy.
Now something that I think is important is that I realized over the last few years (Lots of realizations in recent years - always working on self improvement) that BECAUSE I always thought of myself as fat (I hate that word! I don't ever use it anymore, but that's the accurate word for how i thought of myself then), I became what I thought I was. This is how I know this...So basically after ballet was done I just gained weight. There were lots of other factors, I was unhappy etc. But I got bigger through elementary school, and into middle school, high school I actually lost some weight, not on purpose, a mixture of not having lunch money and I also smoked some...So glad I quit that! I'd also go for walks sometimes at night just to get out of the house, and sometimes smoke LOL. So it was by accident.
I was my smallest when I met my husband. I'm 5'10 or 5'9" and I was 165 then. Oh, I miss that number LOL. And I have hips - the smallest I can remember ever wearing was a 13/14 or 15/16 more usually in juniors or 14. This is why I don't think I'll EVER be much smaller than a 14. I was 18, it was the summer after I graduated. We went out for dinner almost every night it seemed. And I'm talking places like Fridays and applebees, etc. I started out eating small portions, but before you know it I was matching pace with my now husband who is a super fast eater. Suddenly my clothes were "shrinking in the dryer" at the apartment we moved too. and it was becoming more apparent how some styles and brands of jeans would fit smaller! LOL If only I wasn't so deluded and actually realized I was gaining weight...
So the pounds kept packing on. I went on different diets. At one point after we bought a house I was up to 225. I lost 25 on Atkins, and 17.5 on weight watchers after that. That was my last "small" number I recall. I gained that all back plus more over the years. I still had issues with depression, mainly after my miscarriage. I actually first signed onto Sparkpeople in 2006. I think I got on once LOL. We got a treadmill. I used it a couple times. The most I could ever jog was 2-3 minutes at a time. And that was after Rockstar energy drink LOL. Moved to a new house, about 5 years ago, after a while I was 250. I read The Beck Diet Solution - great info, seriously, but never got very far. Read the Power of your Subconsious mind - about positive thinking basically. Those things helped some. I'd get up in the morning and get on the treadmill and walk while reading a book. I was cooking food out of healthy cookbooks and paying attention to portions. I lost 10 lbs....
I got pregnant. I knew I'd finally get pregnant as soon as I dropped a couple lbs LOL. I was tired of waiting until I was healthier. I knew people larger than me who had great pregnancies and I knew if I kept waiting it'd never happen. I didn't gain much weight early on in the pregnancy but by the end I was over 300. I've never told anyone that. Blood pressure jumped, got induced 3 weeks early, that didn't work, went in on 9/8 and finally had a c-section on 9/11/09 and my precious beautiful funny smart amazing love of my life was born. Thanks to him being out, losing swelling, and some breastfeeding (well, pumping) early on I dropped some weight immediately. I was stuck at 275. Went to weight watchers again the summer after he was born. Was having asthma issues, so just eating less, not working out at all, lost 25lbs. stopped for who knows what reason. over the next year gained a few back. Got on Sparkpeople in fall of 2011. dropped a few lbs, worked out a lot, started tracking....fell down the stairs and broke my big toe. Gained some weight back. Toe never healed right (well, xrays show it did...) can't bend it, hurts to try, but once Dr said it was in fact healed I knew I had to get working out again (I was scared of breaking it again or something). Got kids to watch full-time starting first week of January 2012, 2 weeks later got back on here at 257 and got exercising. Once I got into a routine with exercise, started cooking healthier meals, Then started tracking. Now I'm at 235. Oh I want to see those weights again that were a part of my past. 225, 200, 195, 180, 175, 170. etc. I know use an inhaler before running, but not before workout dvds. Building up my endurance with not only my legs but breathing. Someday hope to run without using inhaler. We'll see. ALSO super important is that I met amazing people on this site over the last few months. There is a decent chance I would have given up already if it weren't for all of you cheering me on, being hilarious, making me want to come on here...I just can't thank you enough!!!
So here's why I'm writing this all. I started the Sparkpeople 5k your way Rookie Running 8 week program. I started out at over 250 lbs running on my old treadmill (the weight limit is 250 - I figured I was close enough!) I started struggling to jog 1 minute at a time. I did it 3x per week, crosstrained (workout dvd's) 2 x per week, and did full body strength 3x per week. Some of these overlapped, I left 2 complete rest days. I wanted to get strong and fit, not just drop weight. I wanted to make sure everything was getting worked and make sure to prevent injuries. So after 10 weeks (I redid a couple weeks when I didn't feel ready to move on) I came to week 8 right after being sick and having other issues. The last week. The first two days were walk 1 minute, jog 4 minutes 8 times which was rough. The last day, which I did today, was to jog 3.1 miles - a 5k. WHAT???
I knew I'd need to take walking breaks, after all I had only jogged 4 minutes at a time up until today. And I jog SLOW. 40 minutes (the last 2 days of week 8) would only get me 2.5 miles. I was planning on over an hour. I knew it wouldn't be ideal but I was going to do it anyway. So here's what happened
After my 5 minute walk to warm up I reset the treadmill. Started jogging. switched the screen so it didn't show time, just distance. had my ipod going and just jogged. Every once in a while as I just kept going and going I'd check the time. I was literally grinning like a fool for quite a bit of this 5k. I...
jogged for 23 minutes straight!!!!!!!! and went 1.5 miles before having to walk.
WHAT?!?!?!?! OMG I can't believe it still!!!!!
Then walked 2 minutes, jogged another 8 minutes - still amazing for me, walked 3 minutes, jogged 7 minutes, walked 3 and ran the last 3 minutes 55 seconds until it said I went 3.1 miles. I won't make you figure it out - I did my 5k in 48 minutes 55 seconds. OMG. I now have a personal best to work with. AND I did it not only in under an hour, but under 50 minutes. Now I know a lot of people on this program were around 30-38 minutes for their first 5k, but I don't care. I jog slow. For me this was AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! with my 5 minute warm up and 5 minute cooldown I went 3.61 miles and spent 1 hour on the treadmill. burned over 100 calories more than my goal for the day :) I can't tell you how proud I am of this. Oh my god now i'm gonna cry...
For someone who always felt worthless, depressed, furthest thing from an athlete ever, always fat and lazy and hopeless...To do this??? To complete the program?? to stick with this for 3 months??? Yeah, tears are literally streaming down my face as I type this. I feel HOPE. Hope that my son will never feel how I felt. Hope that I'll be healthy and fit and active and a great example for my son. He wanted to get on the treadmill when I was done. That was great! I have realized I'm NOT destined and doomed to be fat for life. I'm not doomed to be unhappy and get divorced. My husband and I have been together since 2000. We were married in 2004. We are still HAPPY. We joke and laugh and talk still. I am making my own destiny, and it includes health and happiness. I might even become an athlete :) Or maybe I already am?? I think as of today I'm going to call myself a runner. I jogged for 23 minutes straight at 235 lbs with asthma, with no history running or playing sports, with a bit of a cough still from being sick.... Just imagine what could happen in another 3 months, another 20 lbs? And longer?
I am just really proud of myself today. And when I'm feeling down and hopeless someday, I'll come back and read this and remember what I've been through and what I accomplished. I can NOT stop. My healthy happy destiny is waiting for me...
to you all!