Getting fit, my own version of dazed and confused…

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To start off (my autocorrect just change what I typed as start to Stqc…no joke. It may be on crack) I should warn you I have no clear plan about what I’m going to write about. If you think my other posts are rambly, this one will probably be worse. But I’ve had quite a few things bouncing around in my head and want to get them out, and thought to myself, “Self, you created this blog to get rambly thoughts out of your head, so how about you write about them?” So I took my advice and here we are. (Yes, I listen to the voices in my head, what of it?). Here goes nothing…
Self image is always a delicate issue with everyone. That thin attractive woman walking down the street, that makes you want to barf in jealousy? Yeah, she has issues with self image. Everyone does. It sucks too. Middle school hardly helps and that’s where a lot of mine stem from. My parents were loving and supportive so they didn’t cause them. Being an introvert and feeling incredibly awkward in social situations didn’t help matters. I digress. But I have never felt thin. Which is ludicrous because I look back at old pictures of me and I was, and I want to yell at myself to enjoy it more, but I never did. My hubby is one of the few people I never feel self conscious around. So go him! He’s doing a pretty darn good job in the hubby department. But after the birth of our second child, I really started to gain weight. It just wasn’t in my head either…even my neck and chin were fattening up. It was horrible. One day I looked in the mirror and realized I was beyond dissatisfied, I was now ashamed. Maybe it was due to my fantastic hubby or the positive environment my parents created for me growing up…but while I may not have been content with how I looked, I wasn’t ashamed. I was merely dissatisfied with certain qualities. But now it had gone past that and I decided then and there to do something about it. Seeing as I couldn’t swim laps (my preference since I was on the swim team in high school) because we didn’t have a gym membership or a pool, I decided to start running. To call it running is generous, more like walking quickly. But I knew I needed to motivate myself so I also registered for a half marathon. I’d seen people walking it so I figured worse comes to worse I’ll just walk it too. Then I started jogging. I would make it half a block and have to walk. But eventually I sped up, made it longer, went further. I could jog almost ten miles straight. I did my half marathon and dropped a good thirty or forty pounds. I wasn’t at my target weight but was doing well. I also started counting my calories which is eye opening to say the least. (one of those teeny tiny lemon cakes from Costco is 300 calories…spread the word cause those tasty little bites are evil…they suck you in and leave you wanting more.) Then I found out I was preggers again with number three. I was determined not to gain the weight back. I exercised about one hour every day and watched what I ate…and gained fifty pounds. It was disheartening. But apparently my body gets preggers and thinks, “I might need this, I’ll store it away just in case”. So basically my body turns into a hoarder when extra hormones are added…a hoarder of fat. So then I began the journey again. I counted calories, I exercised and registered for another half marathon. But this time I struggled to lose the weight. I dropped twenty pounds right away…and then stopped. I still had thirty or forty more pounds to go but for over a year I didn’t lose weight. I tried counting my calories, I tried only eating when I was hungry, I tried practically everything. I also registered for a triathlon. It went so well that I have since done three more….including one this morning on Mother’s Day. But where I met success after success in my races I still didn’t feel like an athlete. The clothes you wear for a triathlon are…form fitting. And that’s putting it mildly. I hated how I looked in the photos, even though I had a blast during the event and won medals in three out of four of my races. I was training about six to eight hours a week at that point (now I’m up to about 10 hours or more) and still wasn’t dropping weight. So I did som “research” to figure out what to do. (basically I googled it, and compared it to the mountains of unsolicited advice on whatever surefire way was now popular to lose weight). I was overwhelmed with information about how to eat. Eat clean…eat organic… carbs are evil…no fat is evil…no fat is good if it comes from butter…eggs are good…eggs are bad…eat a spoonful of grass topped with coconut oil, during a full moon, while singing Simon and Garfunkel and you will add ten years to your life, stop vomiting and create world peace. I have also heard lectures about how you should eat the food pyramid and lectures about how the food pyramid was the spawn of Satan sent to make all of us fat. (maybe not that drastic, but you get the idea). I finally decided that while there were a lot of things people argued about with regards to food…there were plenty of things everyone seemed to agree on. So I decided to go a week without any unhealthy snacks at all, the snacks that everyone agreed had no real nutritional value, the foods I loved…no chips, no Mac and cheese, no ice cream (even if it is pre-portioned) etc. But I could have yogurt with flax seed, fruits, veggies, etc. The result, I have now dropped eight pounds in the last few weeks. I have an occasional snack now. But I understand the importance of what I eat. This may or may not work for everyone…every body is built differently with different needs…I just needed to keep experimenting.
This long rambling is just my journey with regards to weight loss and food. Eating seems to be a lot like parenting…the more you think you know…the less you actually know. While some people may devour veggies like they are Cold Stone Ice cream…other’s have to work really hard to get the motivation to eat even a few bites. Trust me, I have had many people who love veggies tell me it’s all mental and I have to disagree to a point. I want to love veggies. I could eat my weight in veggies and only have used up one tenth the calories of a snicker bar (no, that is not even remotely exact, I made it up completely…but it’s probably pretty close). I just don’t like them and never have. I will probably never like them, but I am learning to no longer find them disgusting and when that is combined with the health benefits and low calories I actually end up eating them now, and that’s huge. So just like parenting we need to encourage each other to do better, celebrate our successes and the successes of others no matter how small, and we should never tear each other down for daring to make choices different from yours. I am the poster child of the idea…if I can do it…so can you. This is a girl who would eat a box of Mac and cheese for dinner then head down to get a pint of Ben and Jerry’s to polish off while watching a movie. If I can do it, anyone can!

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