Sometimes the moments we feel most lost are the ones in which we find ourselves

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Not So Hot

Usually I feel great after a workout. Energized, pumped, ready to face anything. Tonight...not so much. The WOD was max rounds in 20 mins of 150 m row, 10 in and outs, and 15 box jumps. I love to row so no issue there. But box jumps are really something I have to work on and I am SLOW at them when I jump. But nothing I can't deal with so I was ok there too. It was those in and outs that killed me. First of all, my upper body strength is nowhere close to where it needs to be. Second, my coordination was just off. And once I feel defeated, it is hard for me to get my head right again. I only finished 6 rounds and started on my 7th. For me, this was one of the harder workouts we have had in a long time. Harder than the mile run and deadlifts. Harder than the flying barbell. Give me a run any day over tonight's workout. And it frustrates me because my upper body is something that I feel is not getting obviously stronger. I know I am, but I don't think I am where I should be. But the only way to get stronger is to work on it and do the things that scare us. So junk mood or no, I just have to suck it up and chalk it up to a growing process. Tomorrow is a new day and will bring a new workout!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Happy New Year!

Tomorrow is Chinese (lunar) New Year and since I didn't get around to making any profound observations on January 1st, here is my go at it.

Looking back on the past year, there is really nothing more I could have asked for. For one, I got through my first year of marriage to my great husband Keith. I got a new job, I started on the road towards graduate school, and I got my cat Romo who has been nothing but a joy in my life. I have really become an adult and I no longer feel like I am struggling to find my way. I have also done things this year that I never thought I would be able to or even want to. I have gotten stronger, faster, and in general smarter about working out. I started eating on the Zone, which has done amazing things for me physically and mentally. The urges to cheat and sneak food are pretty much gone. I am cooking almost all my meals instead of heating up frozen diners or pre-packaged food. I am pushing myself to get uncomfortable and do things that are difficult and challenging. Who would have thought that I would go on 3 mile runs just for fun? I have met some of the most amazing and supportive people at Crossfit Central who are nothing but supportive and a lot of fun. 2008 was probably one of the most significant years in my life and I will always think of it as a changing point in my life.

What of the year to come? I just want tot ake things to the next level. Keep working like I have been, but just go beyond even my own expectations. I want to finally accomplish the major goal that I set out to do, which was to get below 150. But it has become about so much more than that now. I want to do all my push ups on my toes, do a pull up, do the suggested weight on our WODs, and take my fitness outside of the gym and start enjoying all that Austin has to offer. I think my life in on the right track and I just need need to keep up with all the things I have begun already. I want this year to be full of the unexpected and cross my fingers that I will be able to overcome any obstacle that might come my way.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Annoying Things About Losing 110 Pounds

Warning - Do not read this if you are squimish about the ugly side of losing weight or are worried about haveing too much information about me and my body. That being said, read on at your own risk.

I have gotten to that point in my weight loss journey where I am starting to see what the "end" result is going to be like. I have taken off a lot of layers and inches and fat and all of that and the body that is undeneath is coming through. I have always said that when I was 267 pounds, i never thought I had any problem areas because everything just kinda blended togeher. Now that I have more definition, I have big time problem areas. In my eyes, the biggest one is my stomach. Now, I am not trying to fool myself and think that I will ever have a flat stomach or be able to wear a bikini or something. But is it too much to ask to have a stomach that is in proportion with the rest of my body? I mean come on! I was so huge that the skin on my stomach had to stretch to an ungodly size. Now, it has shrunk as much as it can and I now have to deal with a whole bunch of empty skin. And there is nothing you can do about skin, short of plastic surgery or something. But I feel like my stomach is really the thing that prevents me from having a very acurate sense of my size because I look at my stomach and I feel like it looks like it belong on someone who weighs 200 pounds or something. And it becomes beyond annoying when I am working out. For one thing, none of my pants will stay up and I find myself stopping a million times during a workout to pull them up. And I apologize in advance for this, but things like push ups or dumbbell rows seriously suck because everything just kinda hangs. Sick, but it's my reality. Maybe I need a tummy tuck. Since starting crossfit I have lost a lot of fat, which has been great, but it has really made the skin issue even more serious. I don't know what to do about it and I would rather have some left over skin than have it full of fat. But it sucks and it sucks even more because there isn't must I can do about it. Oh well. Just keep on working and hope for the best.

Oh, one of the pictures is me at my heaviest. The other is from one of the healthiest times in my life which was last september.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Little by Little

Running is getting easier. Last night we did a WOD with two 800 meter runs in it, and it wasn’t nearly as bad as I was dreading. Was it easy? No. Crossfit never is. But I did it and ran the whole way and didn’t cut any corners or give up. I actually think the longer distances are better for me because once I find my stride, I am usually good for a bit. It is the stopping and starting that is hard for me. Like I always say, I have a long ways to go, but I will get there one step at a time. Now I just need to work on my box jumps, pull ups and push ups…

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Day of Rest

I have worked out 11 of the last 12 days. The “easiest” of those 11 workouts was a two mile run.

Reading those two sentences blows my mind. If I continue as I am supposed to, I will have worked out 26 of the 31 days in January and that was even with a slow start the first week. To some, this way seem like a lot. To others it might seem normal. To me, it just feels good. When I workout on a regular basis, the days that I rest feel like a reward instead of something I should feel guilty about. When I go for 3 days without a workout, it is too easy for me to make an excuse not to go on the 4th or 5th day and it becomes a lazy week or lazy month or worse. So while it feels like a lot, I think this is the best thing I could have done for myself. I am not sure that I am going to continue going 5 days a week to my gym forever, but I know I am not at the point where I can do it on my own and still get the results I want.

The downside to this is that my body hurts. No lie. Last Friday I was beat and went to bed about 9 o’clock. Today, more muscles in my body hurt than I care to count, muscles that I don’t even recall using. My calves are on fire, the back of my knees pinch every time I walk, and there is something funky going on my back that is a mix between an ache and a throb. But you know what? All that tells me is that I am working hard. Nothing is unbearable and hopefully it will be gone by tomorrow. But it always surprises me that I can continue to be sore after doing this for so long. People say “I have done aerobics for 6 months so I don’t get sore.” That just means you are working the same things over and over and your muscles are used to it. Crossfit always mixes it up so your brain and your body never know what they are in for.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Run Run Run Run Everybody Run Run

My workouts for the last 3 days have included running. On Sunday I did a timed 2 mile run. It was slow, but I did it all without stopping so that felt really good. Yesterday, we did 4 rounds of a 400 meter run and 50 squats. That was killer because your legs feel like jello after all the squats plus it was rather chilly last night. But I didn’t stop once on any of the runs or even cheat and make a wide turn at the end. That felt amazing! Then this morning we did 5 rounds of 400 meter run and 15 snatch. I only did 35 pounds and I really should have gone heavier. But the 5 rounds of running in the cold morning air was hard. But again, I did it. I think I maybe walked a total of 10 steps the whole workout and was happy with that.

Again, I am not the fastest runner, but I am not super worried about that. I just want to be able to do it first and then I will worry about getting faster. Running still scares me and I have to admit when I walked into the gym this morning I was trying to think of any excuse possible not to run again. The old me probably would have thought of something lame and punked out. While I still have those urges and the thought that I can’t do it, they are slowly fading from my mind. I know that the run is hard, but the only way to get over that is to work on it. Every run gets easier. I don’t know that it will ever be easy and I am not sure that I want it to be. I have learned that easy doesn’t get you very far in life. But once you can face your fear and address your weaknesses, you can only get stronger. And for me, that is the name of the game. I am thinking I might even jump on the treadmill tonight while watching Biggest Loser. The day when I can just go out for a run with friends and keep up and enjoy myself is a day that I really look forward to.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Week 1 and Counting

Week 1 down. 5 workouts, M-F. It was hard, more mentally I think than anything else. But I was beyond tired when I finally got to bed last night. I took today off and will get my 6th WOD in tomorrow. I 4 mile run which I am not looking forward to, but I know I need to work on. Now I just have to make sure my eating habits are on point. During the week is not a problem because I am so busy. But weekends are a little harder. It seems like every time I go to my parent's house to eat, I eat more than I should and/or things I shouldn't eat at all. So that will be the struggle. I have done well so far this weekend. I had a few more blocks for lunch than usual, but it was a big old salad so I am happy with that. My mini-goal is to see 163 on Monday, which considering I was 170 on the 3rd is not too bad. Water weight and difference in scales aside, that is the goal. Week 2 will be here all too soon, but I am ready for it. It feels weird to go for 2 days without going to the gym or seeing my workout buddies!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Matter Out of Place

"Matter out of place" is an anthropological term referring to when something or someone is not as it should be or not as we expect it to be. For instance, a shoe in the middle of the road is matter out of place because shoes do not belong in the middle of the road. At the same time, a person without an arm might be seen as matter out of place because people are "supposed" to have two arms. I love the idea of matter out of place. I think it is very indicative of societal norms and stereotypes and forces us to face what are often subconscious thoughts.

Recently, I have begun to feel like "matter out of place." I spent so much of my life being inactive that the reality of being a "gym rat" (as my friends would call me) hasn't really sunk in yet. I still get nervous about going into the gym with a new group of people. I wonder if I can keep up or what they are going to think about me. I sometimes feel out of place and like I don't really belong there. Don't get me wrong. I don't feel this way because people aren't friendly or inclusive because that is not the case. In fact, the community at Crossfit Central has made this whole transition into a healthy lifestyle really "easy" for me. But I am a very cerebral person. I think way too much. My mind will tell me I can't continue long before my body gives out. So I tend to fall back into the mind set of someone who isn't active or who couldn't do the workouts. I second guess myself all the time and doubt my abilities. I can tell when this happens because it really impacts my workout. I hold back and don't push myself as hard as I could.

The reason I am writing about this today is because I am starting a new class tomorrow. Since I switched to 5 days a week, I had to add a class on Fridays. So I am going to Lance's 5:45 am class. I haven't worked with him before and I am excited to start. But I am nervous about working out with a new group of people and getting used to the dynamic of the class. I felt this way before I started Mike's class and even more so before I started with Zach at the beginning of my crossfit experience. I know it is silly to be scared because I now LOVE both of my classes and have a great time, so I know it will just take a few days to get used to and then I will be fine. But it is still a reminder to me that this whole process is just as much mental as it is physical. Mind over matter. I have to work on thinking like a healthy, fit person instead of feeling like I am just faking it. There is nothing fake about my determination or commitment so I might as well tell my mind to accept what my heart has already decided.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

WOD 3 of 6

Another day down! This is my first week of going to the gym 5 times a week and the workout tonight was a good one. Good in crossfit is a little tricky because it usually means really hard and left me sitting on the floor trying to catch my breath. Tonight was no different. 5 rounds of 400 m run, 25 inclined push ups and 10 front squats. I am super sore from the last two days and even running was making my chest hurt. But I did it. I didn't finish all 5 rounds since it was capped at 20 mins. I had a little over 1 round left. But it still feels good. It feels good to push and finish something you know is going to be difficult. Mike is a great coach and always brings out the best in my workouts. But 5:30 is going to come all too soon!!!

Monday, January 5, 2009

The Road Less Traveled

This was me 2 years. I have copies of these pictures in my car and my husband always asks me why I keep them around. There are two reasons for this. First, it motivates me. I NEVER want to get back to this point. Ever. I should never have let myself get there to begin with, but now I know better and use these pictures to remind me of what I am working to get away from.
The second reason is because these pictures make me feel good. Weird, perhaps. But I look at these pictures and I say,"Wow. Look at what you have done!" Yes it is hard to reflect back on the many years of my life spent in that body. But mostly it makes me happy because I know that I have done something amazing for myself. On days when I don't feel like my workout went that great or when progress feels slow, I think about the huge steps I have already taken. Yes, it might take another year or two years to get to where I want to be. But I am already ahead of the game. Looking at these pictures makes me stop and really realize how far I have come. Body image is a weird thing and I have no idea what my body really looks like. Sometimes I don't feel that different from the girl in those pictures. But I am. Physically, mentally, and emotionally. I am so greatful to the people who have helped me get to where I am and who continue to struggle with me to keep on the right path.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

I Am Crossfit

Today was the first day of I Am Crossfit. This is an 8 week challenge during which time I will be doing 6 workouts a week, keeping a food log, and taking my Advocare. This morning we did our benchmark workout, which will be repeted in 8 weeks to see how far we have come. The workout was 3 rounds of 400 meter run, 30 jumping pull ups, and 7 hang cleans with 65 pounds. The workout was capped at 12 mins, and time ran out for me with 2 cleans left! The run really hurt my time and I know that that is what I really have to work on. My cardio is crap, but the only way to improve it is to work on it. So that is what I hope to do. Well, one of the things. I have to come up with 3 goals to email my coach, Zach, so I will have to work on narrowing them down. I feel like I have a lot of goals, and I am not sure if that is good or bad. But either way, I have a lot to work on and the workout today was a good indication of how far I have to go.

Another part of today was the body assesment. We got measured and pinched and our body fat taken and weighed. Needless to say, me weight and body fat were not what i would have liked them to be. My lowest weight was 162 and that was at the end of September. My body fat was also 22%. Today, I was 170 and almost 26% body fat. No good. I was not really surprised that it went up, but it is another thing to really have to face it. I want to get down to 150 and below 20%. That would be amazing so that is what I am going to work on. I know that I shouldn't base a lot of weight, but it is something important to me and a solid way for me to see my progress.

So 8 weeks from today we will see where I am. It is easier for me to stay on point when I have someone like Zach looking over my food logs and kicking my butt when I don't give it 100%. So I am going to take full advantage of this opportunity.