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30 questions challenge: 21-30

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I’ve joined in on TANYAP71’s blog question challenge.

I don’t often manage to post blogs daily, so I’ll be answering questions here when I can and posting them en masse.

It’s been fun reading the responses from others, and to help me keep track of them, I’ve made a spreadsheet, here:

(this way I’ll be able to find those posts in the future, even after they’ve been buried by more recent ones)

21. Did you or do you have any disordered eating habits - binging, purging, excessive calorie restriction or excessive exercise? How did develop (or how are you developing) a healthier relationship with food?
I have occasional bouts with binging, maybe 3-4 times a year. Although the frequency of episodes is sparse, the behavior itself disturbs me. I have developed a number of strategies that help me avoid triggering binges:

I’ve also begun working with a dietitian and therapist to prioritize my strategies and see if I can re-wire my inclinations so that food is not a default way to deal with anxiety.

22. What is your current workout/fitness routine?
For most of the past two years it was cardio-heavy and looked
something like this:

M - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Body Pump Class in the evening
Tu - XC ski at lunchtime (if there is snow), Spinning in the evening
W - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Body Pump Class in the evening
Th - Tae Kardio at lunchtime, Spinning in the evening
F- Rest, stretching, sometimes a deep tissue massage
Sa - Playing outside (kayaking, XC skiing, snowboarding, road cycling, etc.)
Su - Playing outside

In the past few months I've been experimenting with a greater emphasis
on lifting heavy and building muscle (New Rules of Lifting for Women)
and so recently it looks more like this:

M - Lifting weights in the evening
Tu - Sea kayaking in the evening
W - Lifting weights in the evening
Th - Tae Kardio at lunchtime
F- Lifting weights in the evening or rest, if I'm driving to a weekend
kayaking destination
Sa - Playing outside (kayaking, XC skiing, snowboarding, road cycling, etc.)
Su - Playing outside

I have an Olympic barbell set-up in my basement that I bought on Craig's List and that's where I do the lifting. So far I'm quite pleased with the results. I'm getting stronger, I have more definition in my arms and legs, my body fat is slowly dropping, and I am actually spending less time working out!

23. What are your current fitness goals?
I would like to get below 19% body fat.

24. When did you incorporate fitness goals into your healthy lifestyle? (Before starting to lose weight, during weight loss, after goal weight, etc.)
I started walking at the same time as controlling my food, so they happened together. The type of fitness I did changed over the process of the weight loss. See the next question for specifics.

25. Is there any form of fitness/exercise that you tried and gave up? Is there any form of fitness/exercise that you would like to try?
I started eating less and walking a half-mile loop around the block. When I got up to about 4 miles per day an old knee injury began to cause pain and stiffness. I was diagnosed with severe arthritis and switched from walking to deep water aerobics 2x/week, eventually increased it to 4x/wk, and then substituted spinning for the lower-intensity water aerobics class, and BodyPump for the higher-intensity water aerobics. In addition I added weight training with a personal trainer once a week and alone once a week.

Now I’m weight lifting on the New Rules of Lifting for Women program 2-3 times a week, alternating with kayaking or other things such as Tae Kardio classes.

26. Do you like to exercise alone, with a partner, in a small group, or in a large group? Why?
I prefer white water kayaking, which needs to be done as a team for safety reasons. I enjoy exercising with others in group fitness classes and on long bike rides. I enjoy the social aspect of fitness. For convenience, though, I’m weight lifting alone at home in my basement.

27. Have you ever hired anyone to help you with your journey? A personal trainer. A dietician/nutritionist? A wellness coach? A life coach? What worked and didn't work?
I’ve hired all kinds of people. Getting the weight off and keeping it off is a Big, Hairy Deal, and I can use all the help I can get! I’ve had a personal trainer for a while, until our schedules diverged. I’ve attended group fitness classes in water aerobics, spinning, and Body Pump, so in a sense you could say that I “hired” the instructors, since I paid for the classes. As I mentioned in question 21 I’ve recently hired a dietitian/therapist team to work with me on my relationship with food. I’ve paid for a membership at www.leighpeele.com so in a sense you could say I “hired” her for advice on her forums and the “members only” materials (which are fantastic, by the way). I recently paid a sports physiology trainer to assess my lifting form to make sure I was doing the New Rules of Lifting movements properly.

All of these solutions have been helpful, in different stages of the process. I’m sure I’ll continue exploring new avenues and looking under rocks and turning over leaves in the future. I’m definitely not too proud to seek help with this. I will do everything in my power to maintain my fitness. If I regain, it won’t be for lack of trying. I'll give you my nutrition tracker when you pry it from my cold, dead hands! LOL

28. What do you do for wellness? For example, to increase emotional, spiritual, or intellectual well-being?
I find yoga helpful, and I need to make more time for it. When I’m doing it regularly (2-3 times per week) everything just seems to go so much more smoothly. My attitude is more relaxed and I take better care of myself. Massages are also very helpful. Not only do they un-knot my muscles, but my brain shuts off and goes elsewhere, which is a welcome break. I get a lot out of attending church on the rare Sundays when I’m not out kayaking. Connecting with a Power greater than myself helps adjust my relationship with the world.

29. There is so much MORE to you than your wellness journey. Please share 10 facts about yourself that aren't related to your weight loss journey, how you eat, or how you exercise.
1) I have two cats, and they walk all over me (especially while I’m trying to sleep).
2) The Holland Tunnel in NYC is named after my grandfather.
3) I like learning foreign languages.
4) I like traveling.
5) I detest housework and weeding.
6) I like blowing glass at a furnace.
7) I have 13 Revolutionary War ancestors and 1 Mayflower ancestor.
8) I have a PhD in genetics.
9) My first email address ended with “.arpa” (pre-”internet” as we know it)
10) Despite my dislike of weeding, I love iris.

30. What are you most proud of about your journey towards healthy living during the month of September?
That I didn’t throw in the towel or give in to all the cravings I had. That I continued with the New Rules of Lifting even though I did it alone at home in the basement with the support of online friends. That I still fit in my Happy Jeans.
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