Thursday, December 5, 2013

Picking up Steam

Things have been moving along quite nicely on the work out front. I'm not making any huge leaps and bounds nor am I seeing results (grrrrrrr) but I am being consistent. I got pretty down on myself the other day bc I was comparing a before/after shot of my back and arms that I thought was 3 months time. It literally had NO change. I was pretty peeved. For all the lat and back and shoulder work I've been doing, I was expecting something, ANYthing to slow my back rolls down. Nada. I flew into a self-deprecating rage and pouted for a while. A day went by and I realized upon closer examination, that it only been two months. Whew. I know better not to expect dramatic change in only 8 weeks of lifting especially if I'm not working out 6x a week. On good weeks I do, but most of the time it's 4-5, bc a body needs rest.

I've definitely noticed gains in strength (90 lb lat pull down, assisted pull up and tricep dip) and I can do real push ups, not on my knees. My rows are up to 75lbs and I can leg press up to 200lbs. Baby beast mode in full effect. I need to lose the fluff though.

This past week I decided to cut the carbs out of my lunches for most of the week (no rice/quinoa or sweet potatoes). I also decided to not do any weights due to some back/shoulder pain and muscle twitching. The area needed a rest and I listened. My last hard workout was Sunday the 30th. I actually worked out on Thanksgiving, took Friday off, hit the gym running on Saturday and scheduled a massage for Sunday. It did wonders.

Mon and Tue were straight up 45 minutes of cardio, hello StairMaster you bitch. I'm up to 15 minutes on that sucker, but balance out the rest with intervals on the bike or elliptical. I also had to wait for clearance for any high impact activity due to a cyst on my left ovary. I was ready to become a hell mouth if my body was about to throw another curve at me, but thankfully this week all systems seem normal according to my doctor. Monday I had a follow up chiro appointment and I'll be back in 3 weeks for my final check up post car accident. I took last night as a rest day too, but tonight, I run. I climb. I lift.

I enjoyed some protein for breakfast (egg, chicken and veggies) and had the last of my protein carrot muffins for a mid morning snack. It's FREEZING here so I did not make the gym in the morning like I wanted. I am aiming for 2-a-days next week though. I'm excited to see if any of my leg work has affected my running.

In terms of supplements I'm kicking up the glutamine, still throwing in protein whenever I can (hello double meat Subway turkey on wheat) and drinking tons of water. I rediscovered cottage cheese again, a long forbidden treat (dairy!) but with pineapple it's amazing. I was down about a pound this week, but we'll see what happens when I start lifting again. I'm only going to do a few movements (squat variation, horizontal push/pull and a back extension) since I don't believe in overworking anything. Some simple weights will help me maintain my muscle but for the next few weeks, 45 min will be devoted to cardio at least 4-5x a week. I think my body can handle it now.

It's a long freaking journey this time around. I'm a few years older, my body has been through the wringer, but damnit, I'm going to have an ass that won't quit and rockin bod as I approach my late 30s. If I can still squat on a toilet when I'm 80, even better.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

I just can't keep track...of myself

Well, it appears as if I'm as terrible at blogging about this journey as I am with tracking. That's not to say I have not been on track, but I just find it so tiresome to track my food, my activity, my thoughts, my anything sometimes. Life gets in the way, I sit at a computer all day and fear the wrath of corporate America watching over me. I probably shouldn't be blogging now, but I'm on my lunch break.

I've been staying ahead of the day by planning out my meals like this:

meal prep
Steamed broccoli, chicken breast and white sweet potatoes. Mini breakfast quiches.

I've been trying to cook more healthy "comfort foods" like this:

matzo ball soup
Homemade vegetarian matzo ball soup!

I've had days like this:
fit bit flex
If only every day could be this way....
And, I've had days like THIS:
I've been making a better attempt at keeping things in line, grocery shopping, prepping my food and meals for the week, laying out work out clothes, getting up at 5:45 to work out in the MORNING and making Saturdays my extra long work out day, when my body allows. My body has been a bitch lately.

After Halloween I had what was seemingly your run of the mill stomach bug. I couldn't really eat nor did I have an appetite.  I knew this was something since it is not like me to NOT want food. I was lethargic, had headaches, couldn't really be too far from a restroom, the usual. Then I started getting bad cramps, which is weird since I no longer have a uterus. This week I found out I was the proud owner of a 3cm cyst on my left ovary, which had bled into itself. Grrrrrrrreat. 

I'm on amber alert now so I don't rupture it further and my doctor and I are taking a "wait and watch" approach. In the meantime, high impact activity is out for me, like running. Again, this pisses me off since I was just starting to gain momentum in my workouts again. Frankly, I'm pretty pissed off that since the summer of 2012, any attempt I make at getting back into shape has been knocked down due to some stroke of bad luck. Surgery? Car accident? Strange growth in my innards? You name it, I've dealt with it. All I can do is keep pushing through it all. 

I can't wait for the feeling of moving forward. I can't wait to see GAINS and see my clothes fit again. I've re-started yet again the LiveFit Program by Jamie Eason. Phase 1 works out perfectly since cardio is a no-show. I'm still doing about 20 minutes on the elliptical though - shhhh! I'm eating cleaner than I ever have, but also letting myself eat. I found some great protein powder I really love and have upped my supplements. I'm taking glutamine after my workouts, a women's vitamin, magnesium, fish oil and cq10 in the morning. At night, depending on if I've been drinking, I have a B-complex, as well as a biotin supplement for my hair/skin/nails. I've noticed my hair is growing (thank god) faster, as I'm trying to grow out this dreaded short cut. My nails are strong and my skin looks great, so I am aiming to be healthy inside and out. Occasionally I take a pre-workout supplement if I'm not energized enough and I always have either a muscle milk or a Quest bar on hand after my workouts. I think I'm following things to a T, so I can only hope I'll start seeing some rewards. I am tracking with My Fitness Pal, my FitBit Flex as well as keeping notes on my phone for workouts and weight levels.

I'm still trying VERY hard to be nice to myself, but it's proving difficult. As motivation, I saw a picture of myself from a wedding I was in recently. I was mortified. All I could see was how large, fat and "beefy" I looked. I felt it that day too. My arms are monstrosities. They are disgusting in my eyes. My main goal is to lose the fat and build those suckers up with muscle. I had been working out for a month or so (by no means a long time) at the time oft the photo, but I just didn't expect to see myself look so much like a sausage still.

The guilty picture.
I hate this picture. All I can see is a massive, fat arm. No definition. Thick legs. A dress that is too big because I did not want anything form fitting to show my waist or belly. I ended up looking like a pumpkin tent. My goal is to look back on this photo in 6 months and see a major difference in myself. I know it's all about self-acceptance blah blah blah, and I believe in that to a certain extent. I know I am worthy - but I also know I can do better.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

The Month of Me

Stop me if I become your friend that only talks about weight loss and the battle of her bulge. I feel like this blog is a good outlet for that type of thing, but lately in my social time, I feel the subject always reverts back to fitness at some point. I'm not sure if other people are on their own journey, if it's something always in the forefront of my friend's minds, or if folks just feel like they have to talk about it too to make me feel better.

I have been reaching out to friends I haven't seen in a long time - we're talking almost a year or more - and a lot has happened in the past year with me, mentally and physically. Sure, a lot of it has to do with my weight loss/weight gain/surgeries etc but it's not like I'm the only person on Earth who has dealt with hardship and physical setbacks. After we meet and chat for a while, catch up etc, the conversation somehow spins to weight loss, motivation or the popular topic of just getting old. I don't know if I'm the one who starts it, or if I just contribute. I need to be more self aware.

I just wonder if my weight struggles are starting to define me with friends. I think that's why I broke away from the mainstream to document my own journey out of the "loop" so to speak on a different blog. I think for some it's helpful to separate it all, as one friend told me it bores her, while others may find it helpful that the story can be all in one place as the focus. I'm really just doing it for me though.

I read so many other stories online, follow other accounts and look for motivational success stories It's almost an obsession. I shy way from any Fitspo imagery or models in hot pants who already have the body I dream of, shouting at me through fancy fonts or sponsorships how to do it, how not to do it and of course, for the love of god, not to ever STOP doing it! It can be tiring.

I'm just trying to do it the best I can. I'm still figuring out what works for me. It's been about a month or so since I've made the effort to really eat cleaner and work out more. I weighed myself today and I'm still around 184 pounds. Granted, I know I am gaining muscle and getting stronger, but the other parts of me are not shrinking. I've never been one of those people who can lose weight simply by stating the desire to do so, eating less and moving more. No, I have to train for half marathons, do hot yoga, take boxing classes, body weights classes 2-3x a week simultaneously and then still watch what I eat! With my body in recovery from various events, some days that type of schedule or intensity is just not possible. I don't know if it ever will be again. *plays tiny violin*

I started jogging a bit more this week though. I ran my first 3 miles around the Lake for the first time in about 5 months. It's slow going and my back and hip hate me. I'm working on upper body strength more as well.I can still do a real push up, 5 at the most now. I keep reverting to month 1 of Jaime Eason's Live Fit Trainer to do it over and over again until I feel like I'm making progress. I'm doing about 20-30 minutes of cardio 3 times a week, but I know I need to step it up and do 35-45 minutes. Perhaps it's time to cut back the weights and move more with cardio. Fat loss needs to happen first, and at this rate, it never will! I have to remind myself this is not a race. I went back and read all blog posts from when I first began my mission in 2011 to lose weight and get fit. It took my body a good FOUR MONTHS to start shedding any weight. It's frustrating, but that's just what I have to work with.

Fall is the time of change and rebirth. I say it every year, October is the month of ME. This one isn't any different.

Time for a do-over.

Monday, September 23, 2013

When Will I Not be the Chubby One?

If someone asked me today, I would consider myself  "chubby" right now. I've had past lovers call me "meaty", "voluptuous" etc., whatever suits their preference is fine with me. I get it, I've got some girth, and it's not all bad. I've learned to work with it and I've fought against it. When did I first realize that I had a little more to me than most of the girls I was friends with? Let's take a trip back to the early 80s shall we? A time of mom jeans, school lunches provided by McDonald's and The California Raisins.

I can remember the day clearly - it was the President's "Physical Fitness Day" we used to have in elementary school. I was in the third grade,  making me about 8 years old. I believe now the day or "tests" are called the President's Challenge or something similar. Just another day to make your slightly larger/slower/shorter/etc than average kids feel hundreds of levels below average in this competitive world.You know, the day you can wear casual clothes (if you're in a uniformed school, like I was at the time), and you spend half the morning doing various foot races and silly things like pull ups (yeah, right) or the "sit and reach"? What 8 year old can do a real pull up?! I'll tell you which one could not, and still can't!

This day of the year always gave me agita. I hated running. I knew I was not a dancer, a gymnast or naturally lithe and thin girl like some of  the chosen few in my grade. I come from Russian/Italian/Irish stock. I've got broad shoulders, thick legs and a penchant for eating potatoes. These things have not changed from ages 8 to 36. I've just learned to cook them better - the taters that is.

While most of my friends were getting ready in the morning and getting excited for a day of jeans, t-shirts, physical greatness or exertion, I was getting a stomach ache. I would get that sinking feeling in the pit of my gut just when we had to line up for events. My mental dialogue would be something like, "What do you mean we have to stand in front of a group of  our peers and just...hang from a bar? After doing that, you want me to lift myself up? Are you nuts? Sprints? Are there people chasing me?" No matter how hard I tried, I always felt like I had rocks in my calves weighing me down or the Stay Puft marshmallow man in an ill-fitting polyester gym shirt. I still do.

The only thing I was really good at was flexibility. Oh, I mastered that stupid "sit and reach" or "V" sit up as they may call it nowadays and was I was the best in my grade. Stick a ruler between me and the wall and I'll show that ruler who's boss and how bendy I can be.

This accomplishment of the day was no match for the height/weight percentiles though. When it came to me, if I remember correctly, we all had to get on a scale in front of classmates (not just your school nurse or teacher). Talk about hidden terror! Torture! Cruelty! My eyes scanned any open doors, prayed for a possible fire drill right at that very moment. (It was a Catholic school, so I had high hopes God took pity on me and my love for bread and grape juice.) My heart raced, my palms were sweaty, my nervous bowels were knocking on heaven's door and when I was finally called, it was all just a blur. 88 pounds was all I heard. There were a few snickers, a few sneers, a few chuckles. I was nowhere near the biggest in my class, but I had some meat to my bones. Even at 8 years old, I knew from that point on, I wasn't thin enough, light enough, fast enough or pretty enough. I felt frumpy.

I got home from school and the fun didn't stop there. Upon hearing my weight, my father started to proclaim "88 pounds! Big ole 88! We better start watching what you eat so you don't eat us out of house and home!" He would often send my friends who came to visit or pick me up for a sleep over with the same warning "Don't let her near your fridge!" , he'd shout with a chuckle. My bounce down the steps turned into a numb, slow moving drag of degradation. Apparently I was a beast with an appetite who shouldn't be let out. God forbid I end up without a snack on the streets of my small town and the arm of small toddler was nearby. I may bite it. Between that my mother's affinity for calling me out to have "truck driver arms", I was at a loss. I was living in a home that had a mother and grandmother that liked to cook and feed me, I was not athletic nor did I play an instrument. I was a thinker, a reader, a writer, and apparently an eater.

This all came flooding back to me this morning. I stepped on the scale and it read a whopping 188 pounds, almost 189. "Oh my god. Impressive," I audibly said to my dog while on the scale. This is THE most I have ever weighed in my entire life. The chubby kid in me came up to the surface again and I began to shut down. I didn't talk to the BF during breakfast. I'm distracted at work. I've accepted the fact that I guess 3-5 days a week of 50 minute workouts for over 6 weeks isn't doing anything yet. Weights and cardio should be sculpting me into something marvelous is my mentality.

I worked out Thurs/Fri/Sat and felt great. I felt strong. I'm doing all the right things, but the tape measure and scale are going in the wrong direction. I don't want my mind to follow. It's thoughts like these that can derail any exercise program in a heart beat. I'm trying really hard to fight those inner demons and just keep plugging away. I know these things take time. I know 6 weeks is not enough, but I just need to believe in the process for that little 8 year old girl back in the day.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Slow Carb?

Well, it seems as if I've been slow to update the past few days. Fear not, I have been working out and watching what I eat still! I had a great workout this past Saturday at the gym with weights and cardio, then spent the night at one of my friend's houses making them a wonderful home cooked meal with my famous meatballs and some angel hair pasta. Yes, there was wine, and yes I indulged in some pasta, but after a hard work out and only 2 protein bars that day, I ate my fair share.

Sunday I spent cleaning and prepping food, sauteed ground turkey, chicken legs, green beans, boiled eggs, salads galore for my week ahead. I am trying to ease my way off dairy and carbs for a bit. White carbs I should mention, no wheat, rice, potatoes or junk. I'll enjoy beans and nuts and plenty of veggies.

I noticed that I really like the worst fruits for weight loss, go figure! I know fruit is better than sugar and no one got fat by eating bananas and pineapples, but I figure I may try taking a break for a bit to see if it helps my weight loss.

I started to re-read the Four Hour Body and am thinking next week I will begin. The whole "slow carb" idea isn't completely lost on me, but I know cutting out ALL carbs for myself just doesn't have the same effect on my body as it did 10 years ago. I have leftover foods that only I will eat and some dairy, so I refuse to waste them. I've cut down to carbs at only one meal per day and am chugging water like a fiend all day at work. (By the way, my dermatologist said my skin looked great at a recent appointment this week -- it must be the Oil of Olay and H2O!)

My schedule just hasn't allowed me to get back into hot yoga yet, what with the chiro 2x a week and me actually being social on weekends again. This whole month my Saturdays are booked with old friends I haven't seen in forever. I am making the effort to reach out even though I hate the way I feel in clothes or social situations. I've been through the cycle before, and I know it will end. Baby steps.

Yesterday I squeezed in a 20 min leg work out with leg curls, leg extensions, weights squats and some quick bicep curls. It's better than nothing -esp since I had a business meeting during my lunch and a chiro appt right after work. I'm just so exhausted lately. Not sure why. I am eating so much spinach (iron!) and juicing and chomping on veggies, chugging water, working out -- I'm beginning to wonder if I'm not fueling myself properly again. I tend to shy away from anything but meat and lettuce when I'm trying to lean out. Perhaps I shouldn't feel so bad about that tiny sliver of frozen pizza I'm planning to eat tonight...We'll see.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Making a Beeline for the A-Line

Motivation. I hate this belly.
I never knew an A-line skirt would make me feel like such a stuffed sausage. I ventured out to Target a few weeks ago in search of a corporate presentation-ready outfit for work. I figured, what's better for my curvy figure than a nice Mad Men inspired A-line skirt? First of all, I was shocked to have to size up to a 14 because of my belly girth. Ugh. Usually I'm a 10-12 in skirts. This was a jaw dropper, and not in the good way.

It's a comfortable enough skirt, but it does not stretch. Bending down or sitting is pretty constrictive. I'm usually in loose flowy skirts these days, since I'm just so used to that material post surgeries. Now that my hernia is cleared up, I'm digging into the land of waistbands again - and painfully realizing how large my waistline has become again as well.

I was pretty good this past week though - slowly making changes to accommodate working out again. I left work half an hour early to meet up with my chiropractor on Friday - who then never showed up. I hate that. He's got a valid excuse, but when it costs me over $10 and 2.5 hours of my day to deal with a 15 min appointment, it really chafes my ass, pardon my French.

I wore my work out clothes there though, fully intending on working out around 7pm when I got back to Oakland. I did just that. Some weights, some elliptical, then I got home. Saturday I did my water aerobics class for the first time in a while, and boy did my shoulders kill. I had a hair cut appt in the city and met up with a friend for some day drinking though. I grabbed half a turkey subway sandwich for lunch and pretty much drank my calories for the day - shame on me. I was that girl on the train stuffing her face with a messy taco. I was a messy taco.

I had my first massage (deep tissue) since the car accident on Sunday and while it was amazing, it pretty much made me sore for about 3 days after. I fully knew I would be taking Monday and/or Tuesday off to recover. My back and left side were just too tender.

Yesterday at work I actually left my desk to go to the gym for 25 minutes and do a weights workout. I figured since I have a chiro appointment after work, I can at least do some weight training if not a full work out. Biceps and back were done! I got a good adjustment on my back and today I hope to work out after work with minimal pain. It's supposed to be...LEG DAY. I see a few sets of lunges, squats, dead lifts, leg curls, leg extensions and the good ole leg press in my future. Afterwards, if I can still walk, it'll be 20 minutes on the treadmill for some light cardio.

I may re-read the 4 Hour Body again by Tim Ferriss. I don't whole heartedly agree with it, but we'll see if slow carb is an option for me. My chiro managed to lose 23 pounds in 7 weeks. I know, right? While it may not be the same for women, I can only hope to slim down a bit before my friend's wedding in about 5 weeks. Man, time flies.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Day 9: So Many Fruits and Vegetables

I haven't been to the gym since Saturday and it's bugging me. I need to be better at planning. Tonight I am going after work and have decided on 30 minutes of run/walking on the treadmill if my hips can handle it and back/shoulder/tricep work for strength training.

This morning I had a green juice with my breakfast (an organic feta/spinach/egg white burrito) and some watermelon. My lunch/snacks at work today include cherry tomatoes, blueberries, raspberries, half an avocado, chicken, romaine, red pepper hummus and a kiwi.I've been eating so many fruits and vegetables lately, I would think I should start feeling like Wonder Woman. But I don't.

My skin is starting to freak out on me and I'm not sure why - little red bumps here and there on my chin and cheeks. I've always had great skin and I worry when things start to go awry. I thought with incorporating so many veggies into my diet things would start to clear up - where's my miraculous juice boost, people? Am I allergic to something I don't know of yet?

My chiropractic appointment went well last night - albeit very short. My doctor is back after being gone for a few weeks so I'm glad to work with him again and see the lay of the land regarding my back and left side. It's been about 3 months since my car accident and I'm slowly starting to feel better, but I still have pain with certain movements or every day chores. I try not to let it bring me down though. Baby steps, right?

I bought a groupon for a month's membership to hot yoga today too. I'm excited to get in the hot box again and stretch out some really tight and sore muscles. I may attempt to go this Sunday. I'll be back later to post how my workout went. Hopefully this old body can keep up.

Here's my morning green juice recipe, I alter it sometimes with kale or leave out the ginger/lemon if I don't have it on hand:

1 cup organic baby spinach
1 bunch organic celery
1/2 organic english cucumber
1/2 lemon (no rind)
1 carrot
1 organic granny smith apple
1 inch of fresh ginger

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Day 8: Dare I Run Again?

So, I'm thinking about running the Oakland Hella-Ween 5 miler in October this year. The lure of the ability to run in a tutu while wearing a hot dog hat also is appealing. Costumes? Beer? A short run? Why, Yes Please!

All that is standing in the way is a $40 registration fee and well, my body. Will my knees be able to handle it? Will my hips/back/left ass cheek be able to sustain minimal damage? A year of body bullshit and two surgeries and a car accident really put a crimp in my weight loss journey. I'm hoping to get back on track and I know myself: If I don't have a goal or something to train for, I don't make the time.

You'd think the want, the need, nay, the sheer desire to not hate myself would be enough. It's not. I haven't worked out since Saturday. Granted, I hiked a bunch of steps on Sunday and did a ton of walking and manual labor Monday, but no gym time. I had a full day of work Tuesday and a baseball game to attend that night. Today, working and then I have to drag myself across the Bay to go to the chiro in SF. I won't be home until after 8pm. Going to the gym that late is not an option, as a matter of starvation and safety in these parts prevents me from waiting for a bus at 9pm on unsavory street corners. Sigh.

I should be setting my alarm for 5:45 am. I should be getting out that damn door in the morning by 6 to do a measly 30 minutes of running. I did it before, why can't I kick my own ass to do it again? Why did I have beer last night AND a cheese steak for dinner at the game? How is it possible for a person like me to have zero will power?! Today I'm really trying to dig deep down and pull it out of me.

Breakfast was an egg white scrambled with one egg, with some green peppers and onions and a green juice (cucumber, spinach, celery, carrot, green apple, ginger and lemon). I've had a handful of pistachios for a snack and must maintain dignity at an office lunch. I need to remember to juice and prep more as to not waste my produce. It's counter productive, which is all I seem to be feeling lately.

I just need to remember this.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Day 7: A Long Weekend

Today's Weight
183.4 lb

Well, considering I didn't restrict that much this weekend, I'm doing ok weight wise. I had a dinner with friends out in the city on Friday and I had some drinks. Thai food earlier that day for lunch made me eat a lighter dinner (as did my budget). Saturday I hiked early with the boy and hit the gym. Sunday though, we hit the Cleveland Cascade in Oakland and did stair work. Let me tell you, my knees did not like me. I worry when things like this happened but it could be more internal issues thanks to the car accident. I've never had knee issues that stemmed from going up or down stairs. I'm hoping it's just me being 30 pounds overweight and out of shape. Today it doesn't hurt as bad but it kept me from doing anything wild on Monday, which was Labor Day.

I spent most of Monday doing manual labor, ironically enough. Walking to and from the grocery store instead of driving and hitting up home depot. My task was to remove a ceramic soap dish that broke in the shower, which turned into me destroying 5 other tiles around said dish in the process. Well, now I know how to tile a damn shower.

Before embarking on the DIY project from hell I went to Target to pick up some bigger work out clothes and a skirt for work. I know I can't hide in stretch pants forever and had refused to dress for the body I'm in, instead always holding out for the body I had or want. It totally took the wind out of my sails so to speak. The utter horror I experienced in the dressing room really put a damper on my day. If I could bottle up the self-hatred I felt in that dressing room, well, it would have to be a really big bottle.

I remember last year at this time I was trying on size 8's and playfully boasting online (ok, bragging) that I was a full 3 sizes smaller than the year before. Well, here I am again, a size 14 and really hating the process ALL OVER AGAIN. I hated what I saw and it really hit home what I needed to do and how I needed to stay motivated. It just seems so daunting right now. Hoping my body sticks with me and doesn't crap out on me in some way again.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Day 4: A Morning Hike

AThe BF got me up early this morning and even though last night I had several mixed drinks and wine AND thai food for lunch, the key is balance. 

I pushed through a steep 1.38 mi hike, got my heart rate up and burned 201 cal according to my HRM. 

What's a nicer reward than this good view? This is from Claremont Canyon, near the Oakland and Berkeley border. A wonderful clear morning. 
After my hike, I went to the Y. I did some weights and 20 minutes on the elliptical to get some extra cardio. It was a shoulder and back day:
Overhead raises
Front raises 5lb
Lateral Raises 5lb
Push downs 
Pull downs 65 lb 12x3
Chest Press 40 lbs 12x2

And for fun:
Glute press 60lbs at 12 reps x2
Seated Leg Press 110 pounds 12x2

Friday, August 30, 2013

Day 3: The Pizza Diaries

I swear, every time I start a diet, it seems as if the heavens open up and social invites for drinks and dinner and pizza fall into my lap. I am a hermit, I like my alone time and I find that sometimes social outings also test my very low will power. Sigh.

I had pizza at work this week. The BF and I have veggie frozen pizzas in the fridge for quick meals during the week when we have had a lower carb day. We ration these out, and I jazz them up with extra vegetables like frozen spinach, mushrooms, kale or a protein like tofu. I still had pizza left over from the work luncheon in our fridge and when I got home from the gym last night I was starving. I haven't been very good at planning post work-out recovery meals. I know it's only the beginning of my "new routine" again, but I gotta plan better.

I got hungry at work and ate my Luna Bar that I had planned to eat after work. I didn't bring my shaker to blend a Vega One shake (chai, anyone try it yet?) AND I didn't feel like buying at shake at the gym. Now what? Well, I came home, ripped into the fridge and ate some pizza. These are small pieces mind you, not giant NY style slices. When the BF got home, he suggested it be a pizza night. Sigh. I made it, since I was tired and not in the mood to chop veggies or plan a meal, but I rationed out 1/4 of the pizza and ate that only. I felt only mildly guilty since I did work out and well, carbs are not always the enemy. Muscles need recovery food, right?

This morning I made a breakfast smoothie with almond milk, a banana, PB2 (my love), vegan vanilla protein powder,some chia seeds and ice. I was still hungry. That left over lil piece of pizza from last night? Breakfast #2 this morning 2 hours later. I didn't pack a lunch today either since I know I'm going out after work and didn't have time to plan ahead. I'm failing miserably at this crap this week. "Fail to plan, plan to fail" rings in my head. Ugh.

I also woke up to my instagram account being disabled for this journey. Apparently I posted a picture of a salad from my other personal account and I'm banned. WTF. So, if you want to follow me on Instagram, my profile is: luckylosesit2. I guess that's ok. It was really annoying though. Thank god it's Friday. I promise, next week, I won't talk about pizza so much.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Day 2 Workout

I managed to not kill myself today after work at the gym. It was my first attempt at a pseudo "leg day"!

Today's workout included:

Leg Press 12 reps, 3 sets, 120 pounds
Leg Extensions 12 reps, 3 sets 40 pounds
Leg Curls 12 reps, 3 sets 40 pounds
Standing Calf Raises, 12 reps, 3 sets, 45 pounds
Seated Calf Raises, 12 reps, 3 sets, body weight
Squats with cables (30 pounds) 2 sets of 10
Abdominal Cable Twists, 2 sets of 12, 20 pounds

30 minutes on the treadmill, run/walk 5.0 mph. ran for 3 minutes walked for 1

Whew. I foam rolled to my heart's content after and sat in the hot tub at the gym for about 5 minutes. My body doesn't hate me...yet.

Day 2: Starting Slowly

Well, I won't say I failed yesterday, since I knew I was going to have pizza for lunch, but the guilt set in. I have a co-worker doing the Whole 30 diet who cannot really eat anything offered in the normal/fast/cheap realm of food. Office catered lunches are usually a bevvy of starch, sugar and carbs galore. I admired her discipline to bring her own food and sit out the staff birthday lunch. My office has gotten better about healthy lunches since I started, but this month's luncheon was focused on red velvet cake and pizza. I had a side salad and limited my selection to two small pieces. I sat with another coworker who was on a diet who only had a plate filled with salad and hot wings. I felt bad for letting myself enjoy pizza.

I felt that I "failed" at 3 pm though when I had a third piece. I knew I wasn't working out that night because I had a chiropractor appointment after work, but I also don't want to trap myself in a mentality of "you can't eat anything evil!". I wanted a snack, I knew I wouldn't eat til past 8pm and I wanted something to last me the commute to and from the chiro. I ate the damn pizza, now I moved on.

No food is evil. Too much food causes problems. One day of having pizza isn't going to derail my efforts, but I can't shake the guilt. I had wine when I got home. I said I would have a green juice for dinner and I didn't. I had brown rice pilaf and some leftover chicken I fried the night before. When I lost weight the first time, I still had wine. I still ate sandwiches - the most unholy food of all. Imagine all the carbs and condiments and processed evil I put in my body! It still fueled my workouts and I still lost weight.

I know things will be slow these first 1-3 months. I won't miraculously drop 10 pounds this month since I'm eating healthily. I always eat well. I just have to focus on portion control and moving my body around more. I know I am getting more vegetables in my diet since I'm juicing. I'm taking vitamins. I'm going easy on my body. I plan to work out tonight, my usual 20 minutes of weights to 30 minutes of cardio. My back is a bit stiff, but I'll roll with it. I'll even foam roll it later.

Outside of some random side pain (I hope my right ovary isn't revolting), I feel pretty good. Now to just get through the work day...

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Before Photos

It burns!
If I'm going to be accountable and really put it out there, here are the photos/experiences that really upset me and pretty much were the straw that broke the camel's back in this body of mine. I work in a corporate environment, so I have to dress up. I'm used to being able to wear comfortable clothes, yoga pants and turn workout attire into reasonably disguised 9-5 wear. Not here. I've managed to buy some dresses here and there and I've found some scores in sales racks. I'm a fan of easy on, easy off, especially gym days. I have this one dress though, that I didn't try on before I bought it. It fits everywhere except for my big matronly arms. The last time I wore it, I had painful chafing and basically felt like my circulation was being cut off because it was so tight around the circumference.

Food Baby
Ah, bloating. Ever since my surgeries, my digestion has been less than stellar. Every day I find something else that causes me extreme bloating, gas pains, gas, a snap crackle popping noise in my left side (the bubble guts I like to call them) or embarrassingly loud howls coming from my bowels. This does not bode well in an office setting. One day, after having a seemingly innocent breakfast of a green juice, a green tea latte (with full dairy) and some grapes, this happened. Half way through my work day I realized I had a basketball sized food baby protruding out of my body. This is unacceptable.
Finally, here it is. The body I am born with, the body that shames me. I know, things could be worse. I could be missing a limb. I could be unable to walk etc, but this is not the shape I am comfortable in. This is not the shape I move well in. This body has taken a beating, internally and externally. My stomach bears 6 scars and I seem to carry all my weight in it. I'm a woman, I'm a Cancer and I'm told this is normal, but I don't like it. I also know that weight is not a number, but the scale is not clouding my mind with muscle. There's fat in them thar hills. I also know a waist size of 36 or greater is not healthy as a woman, especially one in her 30s. For my own health and future, it's important I start taking better care of myself now, to prevent any more complications later. Seeing these images make me cry right now. I hope to look back one day and say they made me proud. Today is not that day.

The First Day, All Over Again

Well, here I am. All over again. This post will be long because, well, I'm starting from scratch. If anyone ever finds this blog, I'd like to give some background on where I've come from and what my intentions are.

 I'm going to count this as day 1, the first day in a very familiar journey of mine that I seem to revisit time and time again. The journey of losing weight and gaining strength and feeling confident. Why is it always so damn hard?

The feeling has slipped away from me time and time again, yet this last time it's staying away far longer than planned. I've documented my ups and downs, my woes and wows all over the place, social media, my other blog etc, but nothing ever really sticks. Life threw me for a loop since April 2012 when I had to have a full hysterectomy. I had been working out hard, since September 2011 to lose weight. By
April, I had managed to lose almost 20 pounds through running, diet and  weights classes. I even ran a half marathon a few days before my surgery.

Surgery did a number on my body and I'm still dealing with lingering side effects and limitations over a year later. Weight gain, fatigue, sensitivity in my abdominal region, loss of strength, insomnia, you name it. I had been told to refrain my lifting anything heavier than 10 pounds for about 6 weeks. Running? Try 3-4 months, and even then, start slowly. It took me about 6 months to get back to the gym, but the pounds had already began creeping up.

I was also involved in a car accident June 2013. Just when I was gearing up to hit the gym and weights again, I was knocked back down. I'm still here, but with new shoulder tendinitis, a jacked up lower back, sciatica pain that comes and goes and ribs that like to pop out when I move my body in ways that it doesn't like. I was told to lay off the gym for another two months after that.

In July 2013, I had to have an umbilical hernia surgery. It wasn't anything major, but again, 6 weeks of no gym time or exercise or anything to ruin my recovery process. added to my already in progress hiatus. It pained me that every time I wanted to make strides or "get back on the horse", life had some other obstacle for me to overcome or wait out.

I'm starting this blog to really focus on my day to day activities, eating habits and foray into exercise again. I've become inspired by so many other people that I follow, blogs I read, Instagram accounts I scour with motivational stories and successes, I wanted to see if I could inspire myself. I'll link to those people later on, but for now, this blog will be private, a space only for me to write in until I feel like sharing. It's for me to stay accountable.

I wanted a separate blog to document this reboot, a site specifically set aside for health, weight loss and fitness. The"losing it" part could either be weight or my sanity, I haven't decided on that yet.

I'm known to keep notes on my iPhone about "starting date measurements" and have watched my weight fluctuate since 2011. I am at my heaviest weight right now. I cringe, I hate waking up and going through the motions of choosing clothes to wear. I hate getting ready. I have become quite the hermit because I don't feel comfortable going out or seeing people who may have seen me last right before my surgery, when I was really "fit". My lowest weight was 154 right after surgery. My goal weight is 145 lbs. I am 5'4" tall, so that number is quite generous and within my frame/weight/height range.I feel comfortable with that goal.

I want to make a change for the better for myself and my sanity. I'm tired of feeling insecure, dressing down to hide myself, not making the effort to do my hair or make up bc it won't help. I talk terribly to myself. I put myself down and judge harsher than anyone I know. I need to be nicer to myself and remind myself that we all start somewhere, again. This time, I'm working on taking it easy, listening to my body and not jumping in head first to where I think I should be at the gym.

I've never put it all out there before, so here it is:

Starting Weight, 183.4 lb
Hips:    42 in
Waist:  38 in
Chest:  35 in
Bust:    40 in
Thigh:   21 in
Calf:     15.5 in
Upper Arm: 12.5 in

I hate seeing these numbers, but who knows where 6 months, 1 year I'll be this time around? I ventured to the gym last night, where I did 20 minutes of weights and 30 min on the elliptical with intervals. I was a little rusty, forgot my water bottle, my HRM and neglected to remember how my glasses slip off easily when I sweat. Time to invest in more contacts! I feel a bit sore today, but nothing terrible. The big hurdle today will be portion control at the office with our staff lunch: pizza.