Friday, November 23, 2012

Oh baby give me one more rep

Doo doo doo doo dooo doooooo dooo, oh baby give me one more rep.  (New Maroon 5 song, in case you didn't get it)

4 days of round 4, and 4 days of working out exactly to plan.  L.O.V.I.N.G. it.  It's like my whole body is alive.  And sore.  But so so alive.  every muscle group has been through it's paces, and so far they've all responded beautifully.

Barbell squats with 25kg on board.  Chest press 20kg.  Shoulder press with 2 x 8kg dumbells.  12 months ago I never even imagined that I would be able to do this; strength, fitness, confidence.  And now I'm completely devo when the workout is done.  More gym!

I had to buy myself weight gloves - I know, what a wanker - but the weights were tearing my man hands apart.  They made getting a decent pace on the rowing machine not such a chore either, so they're here to stay.

Today's warm up was on the rower, which I now love, with 1 minute intervals.  My slow is still around 2:30 per 500m, but my fast was tipping below 2:00.

We also do a few pyramid sets.  Today's were upright row with barbell. 12 reps @ 10-12.5kg, 10 reps @ 12.5 - 15kg, 8 reps @ 15-17.5kg, 12 reps @ 10-12.5kg.  I went for the top end today, and just managed to pull through the full number.  But what I did notice is how much easier the last 12 were compared to the first 12.

Heaps of triceps fun too, including;

3 sets of 8-12, too.  Owie.  But this is the goal.  Could my battle-weary body be that tight and toned in just 11 more weeks?

It seems the program follows a pattern of; Monday Legs (Quads & Calves), Tuesday upper body (Back & Biceps), Wednesday Cardio & Core, Thursday Legs (Hammys & Glutes), Friday upper body (Shoulders and triceps).  And week 2 is a repeat of week 1.

Can't wait to see how much I've improved next week!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Weigh In - R4 - Week 1

And just like that we're straight into another round of 12wbt.  Probably my last?  We'll see.

Round 1 was all about regaining control over my food, especially the whole planning and shopping in advance.  Finding some confidence in the kitchen.  Getting up the courage to start exercising post surgery.  Weight loss happened, but so did so many other aspects of my life.  It just happened, you know?

Round 2, well, I thought I knew it all.  No need to follow the plans; nutrition or exercise.  I'll just do my own thing.  I lost some more weight.  Not a huge amount.  And although I consolidated my habits, I was definitely not "cured" of my fat tendencies   And my comfort zones were pretty tight.

When round 3 rolled around, I debated with myself at length about whether to re-sign or not.  Obviously I did, but in doing so I took the time to re-set some goals and got serious about the fitness parts.  Food was still good, even though we didn't follow "the master plan".  But my great discovery was Lean & Fit, and in particular, running.  I stuck pretty closely to the schedule up until a little back twinge in week 8 curtailed my activities a little.  Again, I lost little weight - mind you I was well under my first two goals by this time.  But I found strength, and speed, and endurance.

So we're in round 4.  I've avoided the free weights area at gym like... a Carlton supporter in the last quarter when down by 10 goals to Collingwood would remove his jersey before walking past the Pies fans.  Bad analogy, but you get my drift.  It's Thursday today - day 4, and every day I've followed the fitness schedule like my life depended on it.  No cutting corners.  No extended breaks between sets. No freaking out about whether people are watching me, or if I'm doing it right, or blah blah blah.  I'm just doing it.  And loving it.  But my weight is increasing...

Current Weight: 65.9kg
Last week:      65.0kg
Week's loss:    +0.9kg    
So far:        -31.1kg

... which I'm hoping means that I'm gaining muscle.  And hungry!  Man, I could just eat all day long.  All good stuff, but so much food.  Loads of protein; lean chicken, broccoli, nuts, yoghurt.  Still sugar-free too - only 8 days to go!  Can't see me rushing out to buy a cake on December 1st though!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A golden goal

I don't know where to start this post, and I'm really quite emotional even thinking about beginning...

I think I've said it before, and if so it's worth repeating anyway.  The best thing about 12wbt, this "journey" that I've been on is the people I've met.  The like-minded, positive, encouraging, amazingly inspiring people.

There's a group of us that have been together from the start.  The originals.  The round 1'ers.  They hold such a special place in my heart, but I'm going to single one out.

One of these ladies set herself a goal.  A HUGE goal.  The Eureka tower stair climb.  88 floors.  At the time she set herself this target she was really just beginning her own transformation, and I'm not entirely sure whether she thought she could actually do it.

She believed she could, so she did.

And I'm so incredibly proud xx

Monday, November 19, 2012

Out with the old...

Round 3 is done... gawn... over!

Here's how I went;

Not really much movement in the weight loss stakes, except for week 12 really;

And measurement wise I don't have much to report.  But my fitness tests were a bit :)

The strange thing is that my body has visibly changed in these 12 weeks, but it doesn't show on any of these indicators.  Plus I'm fitter, stronger, healthier (like A LOT)  than I was back in September.  So much so that I've decided to tackle my fears front on with an attempt at Lean and Strong - here on in referred to a L&S.

Round 4 kicked off today, and it was a goodie!  I followed the exercise program to the letter and really enjoyed the different sensation of being muscle fatigued rather than just buggered.  Got the weekly shop done after my working weekend away.  And went for a 9km walk in the late afternoon just to stretch out my legs and soak in some sun.

Nutritionally it was a great day too.  It started with the usual bran, fruit, yoghurt and LSA.  I've ditched the banana now too, and find I stay fuller for longer without it.  Morning tea was a home made protein snack.  Lunch was a berry protein smoothie post workout.  Afternoon tea, some celery with almond butter and a hand full of soaked almonds.  Dinner - well it's Monday, and that always means Salmon Stir Fry.  Yummest.  Meal.  Ever.  And to finish the day off I had some pineapple and pear with yoghurt and cinnamon.  I didn't count my calories, but my guess would be that it came in around the 1350 mark.  Oh, and water... easily 2L today, but it's not something I normally struggle with.

It's all easy when you're having a "work from home" day.  Tomorrow could be a little more challenging to fit the workout in.  But I'm organised.  My fridge has snack size steamed chicken and broccolini packed up and ready to go.  The weeks meals are all planned, purchased and hassle free.  I've just gotta get my ass into that gym.

I've also been thinking a bit about goals and the need to come up with some...  but thats a job for tomorrow!

Still sugar-free too, just in case you were wondering!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Weigh In - R3 - Week 12

Three rounds down!

I can clearly remember that internal debate over whether to sign up or not for my first round.  Would I stick to it?  Would I be able to do the exercise?  And now at the end of my third round, I can scream the answer loudly and proudly, YES!

Current Weight: 65.0kg
Last week:      67.2kg
Week's loss:    -2.2kg    
So far:        -32.0kg

As seems to happen on the last weigh in of each round, I've met my goal.  My third goal to be exact.  There's still a little bit of weight in a couple of places.  And usually when I have a huge week like this it's followed by a quick rebound.  But that's okay.  It's all part of the weight management tidal changes.  I plan on riding the waves for the rest of my days.

Oh, I'm still sugar-free too.  It's been a challenge the last few days as the pre-event stress is tightening big time.  Still haven't had a coffee.  Still haven't eaten a packet of chocolate coated raspberry bullets.  Still am choosing to be kind to my body rather than loading my insides with even more stress caused by crappy food choices.  On Sunday afternoon when it's all done, I'll quiz the man and see if I've handled the stress better or worse than normal this year.  But will he be honest??

The major up-side of this event being over is I can go back to reading my nutrition texts.  I wonder if I can fit some formal study into my pretty jam packed lifestyle?

So from here it's on to another round of 12wbt.  Do I dare attempt some weights on the Lean & Strong program?  Hmmm.  Maybe!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Weigh In - R3, Week 11

Strange week!  I'm still sugar free, but I was mostly exercise free as well.  I'm so, so tired, and work is biting me on the ass right now.

I have a HUGE event coming up this next weekend.  It's annual.  It's grueling.  And it's confrontational.  I was glad to miss it last year, even though it meant I was laying flat on my back recovering from surgery.  I've been trying to come up with ways to get out of it.  I know - that's not very adult of me.  And I know that I just have to face up to it - to the critics and the criticism and the negativity.

May seem strange to talk about this in here, but there is a definite relationship between my stress levels and my weight.  And I've discovered that it's not just the over-eating and generally digesting crap that adds to the scales, coz sugar-free has meant that there is nothing "bad" in the house.  Stress really does make me fat.  Or at the very least, make me feel heavier.

Therefore, it was no surprise to see a little gain this week;

Current Weight: 67.2kg
Last week:      66.9kg
Week's loss:    +0.3kg    
So far:        -29.8kg

That was Wednesday, and this is the first chance I've had to update in here.  But this morning (yes, I'm still weighing daily) I clocked in at 66.0.  There's no way I've lost 1.2kg in two days!

This next week coming up, I will NOT give up on my sugar-free status.  I WILL exercise every day, even if it's just a 30 minute walk per day.  And come next weekend, I WILL just face up to my fears and deal with the fact that I am a public figure in this role, and conducting this event, hosting the meetings and workshops, commanding the attention of the room and confidently responding to the smart ass remarks, heckling and general poor behaviour of some volunteers IS my job.  Therefore I WILL do it, not run from it.  (as much as I would like to right now!!!)

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Happy anniversary... me!  Today marks one year since my back surgery.  I'm really emotional  about it.

This was me on November 3, 2011;

I was sad.  Really sad. And despite having a "bad back" for a number of years, I took none of the advice given.  I didn't exercise.  Not even walk.  I ate terribly.  And I can remember making excuses for my weight, like; I've got the world's slowest metabolism.  I work long hours and I'm too busy to exercise.  I've always been big.  I even threw the big boned thing out there on occasion.  oh, and my favourite self-justification that I HAVE said out loud to people...I only have to walk past a donut shop and I put on a kilo.  OMG - what bullshit!  If I didn't go IN to the donut shop and buy 3, that might have made a difference.

But, you get the picture... I was fat, and sad, and crippled with back pain to the point that paralysis set in down my left side and I was rushed to Monash and operated on the next morning.

And that's when I said goodbye to sad, pathetic, fat me.  I didn't want that kind of a life.

When I got home from hospital, my gorgeous man bought me an ipad, and I began searching for ways to turn my life around.  I stumbled across Rebecca's blog which is where I first heard about 12wbt.  I remember reading about all the things she was doing, not for even one second thinking that a year later I would be doing them too.  I was inspired.  And in true Raelene fashion, I researched the living daylights out of it.

So this was early November, and the next "round" of 12wbt didn't start until February.  I REALLY wanted to do it, but could only walk short distances, but often.  In fact, the first time I made it to the driveway next door I thought there should have been some type of parade!  But I persevered.   The man bought me Michelle Bridges books and a wii-fit. And each day I walked a little further, cooked a little better, and by the time 12wbt pre-season started in January, I was around 10kg down.

About this time, something completely changed my life.  Facebook.  Until now I'd avoided it for various reasons that aren't relevant here.  On the 12wbt forums, someone had posted about a FB group in the Casey Cardinia area that had started up, so I took the plunge and signed up.  I was REALLY timid at first.  Too shy/scared to go to the group walks they had planned.  In retrospect, I was worried that my recovery wasn't fast enough and that I wouldn't be able to keep up.  That everyone would be fitter than me, and I'd be liability city.

A couple of the ladies reached out to me, and from then on I was hooked.  Olivia, Judy, Nicole, Katrina, Lisa, and a cast of hundreds really.  Amazing ladies.  Generous with their time and their hearts, and I love them all dearly.

And as I plucked up the courage to start attending group sessions, my fitness and recovery came on at a great rate of knots.  So too did my interest in and knowledge of nutrition and turning this fad diet thing into a sustainable lifestyle.

I've marked todays anniversary in two ways and with two of my biggest supporters.  Yesterday afternoon I went for a loong walk with my Mum.  I love spending time with her so very very much.  And today, my gorgeous man came on a 20km walk with me, from our house to Fountain Gate shopping centre and back, for no other reason than we could.  Crazy about the man by the way - still - after all these years!

I could recount all the highs and lows of this past 12 months - mostly highs coz that's the kind of life we live.  But all I need to say is that I'm no longer sad and I'm no longer fat.

I don't know who reads this blog, and frankly it's not about that. But if you do read it and you can relate to how the "before me" felt, please look up and don't waste another day being unhappy and without purpose.  It'll change your life in ways you'd never expect xx

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Shhhh - oog - aarrrggggghhhhh

Today was Day 1 of...

...which, at about 3.30pm today seemed like a freaking stupid thing to attempt.  In all honesty I didn't think it would be as difficult as it was.  I've gone sugar-free before and didn't really feel the pinch until about day 4.  And really, I thought my eating was pretty good.  Reality check!

So I've discovered a couple of trigger / danger points;

  • Mid-afternoon coffee, and therefore sugar hit.
  • Prepping dinner whilst nibbling out on my nemesis, jelly type lollies.
  • After dinner Lindt dark with passionfruit and almonds.

I didn't succumb to any of these, but I sure as heck felt the pull of sugar addiction.  I have a thumping headache.  I'm a little bit shaky. And I'm a lot sensitive.

How badly do I want to beat this thing?  Freaking badly.  Sugar is an evil, vindictive, sadistic mistress.  Be gone naughty white powdery goodness :)