Friday, December 27, 2013

Well it's getting awfully close to the end of 2013 and I haven't achieved my goal ... what to do!
A small part of me thought I should fast, or go on some  crazy shake diet to get me over the line but the reality is that I'm 3.7kg off goal and there is only 4 days to go!
So let's not think crazy thoughts or do crazy things.
Truth is, that this is a life change for me, not a quick fix. So to depend on a quick fix to get me over the line is just silly and would be a shallow victory.
The reality is that I got to 94.6 in October, by the end of the challenge matter of fact. So in my head i had 8 weeks to lose the 4.6 and get myself into the 80's.
Now that should have been achievable really, but I dropped the ball.

First a week on holidays, seeing mum and the family, then my birthday and a few dinners out, then flat chat ... I kid you not working from the minute I woke to the minute I hit the hay again at night.
Hubby took over cooking for the kids as I was just so focused on building up my stock levels for the shop.

X-mas is always my busiest time of year and generally the time and energy put into other areas of my life get drawn into focusing on work.
I can't say it's the best way to manage it, just the only way I've figured so far.

So that all adds up to 2 months of neglecting my regime.

Food choices have suffered ... some days I had ice cream for lunch or lindt balls, just cause that's all I could find in the fridge!
Exercise has suffered ... as I daily had to make a decision to devote time to exercise or work and work won.

This of course has left me feeling a little disappointed in myself.
I have learnt enough this year that I could and would and should have coped better under these circumstances.

But in the end, I didn't achieve my goal, my health has suffered and I gained 2kg. No biggie in the grand scheme of things and now that Xmas is over, things have slowed down and I'm back on track.

Back at gym, eating well again and have already got to 93.7. so I've lost the extra 2kg plus some.

What this has taught me, is that you don't have to fall off the wagon and give up.
You can cope the best you know how through a tough spot, then when life can get back to normal, resume your spot in the driving seat.

I have learnt that when on auto pilot I sink back into old habits, I have also learnt that when balance comes back and you take the reigns again It is much easier to recover from 4 or 8 weeks off the beaten track then it is to recover from a year or 5 years of having given up.

It has taken me this year to lose 22kg and whilst I could have done better, 22kg is still pretty phenomenal and I do not want that to creep back on.
If i can catch it at 2 kg and get it back that is much better then trying to recover from 10 or 15 or the whole lot.
And ... my goal this year was to get under 100 kg.
I did that and it was no small feat, so I have to be happy about that.
The goal I didn't achieve was the second goal i set for the year of getting into the 80's.
but that's o.k
I have learnt sooo much in 2013 about myself. about my strengths and weaknesses and most importantly that the key to success is consistency.

That's it.
nothing more, nothing less.
If you want to be healthy, look healthy, feel healthy, then live a healthy life consistently.

Merry Xmas and Happy 2013 peeps.
For 2014 it's onward and upwards.

This year was just the beginning of my journey, the road is long and I'm so eager to continue travelling it to better health and well being.
Jay x

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Holidays ...

Well it's that time of the year again, school holidays.

Whilst I do enjoy seeing the kids more and being able to go in slow mo for a bit, I have found from the last two term breaks that the break in routine does not serve my weight loss routine too well.

Last time was a 2.6 gain from memory ... so this time I am adamant that I can get through the next two weeks without a gain.
I know it's not my food ...surprisingly ... that lets me down. It's the incidental activity. The constant movement of school drop off morning and night and running around in between to get things done for work and home.

So my plan is to maintain my gym efforts, whether it be a class or weights/cardio session and pick up a walk each night. A 50 minute walk to maintain the calorie loss I would get from doing the school walk every day.
That probably sounds a bit mental, sorta of over thinking it all, but this for me is a life change to get to goal and beyond and every time I have a set back it knocks me for six mentally and physically, so I'd rather find 50 minutes each day to go for a walk with my family then go through the struggle of losing a month from gaining then working it off.

Add to that an impending holiday for my birthday and I have all the motivation I need.
All my family are in Queensland, Mum, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunties etc ... and by November it will be a year since I've seen any of them. Timing is not great with work stuff happening and money is always tight but it's been too long in between drinks so to say and some things you just need to make time for. To replenish your soul a little.

So we plan on going up for a visit in Nov, which gives me about 8 more weeks to push this to the next level and get to my second goal for 2013, of being in the 80's.

I'm currently 94.6 and week 8 into the Maxine's challenge, so whilst I don't entirely think I can get into the 80's in the next four weeks for the end of the challenge, I reckon I'm in with a good chance to get there before I see mum again.

Oh mum won't care, she'll love me any ol' way but I think all mum's want us to be healthy and happy and since I saw her last I have lost 19.9 kg and feel so much more energetic and motivated about life. So I think she'll shed a happy tear for sure ... and there is something special about hanging out with your clan and feeling like you belong to some crazy mob that know you inside out and love your guts out flaws and all. Ahhh it will be good.

So happy holidays to one and all, enjoy the slower pace, but don't take the foot off the pedal.
Jay xx

Monday, August 19, 2013

Achieving goals ...

Well I'm week 3 into the Maxines challenge and it sure has proved to be a challenge.
As I had guessed ... it was going to be the nutrition I struggled with as I'm pretty on top of cardio and weights already.

Here's a snippet of my brain space for the challenge so far. It's been a big learning curve ...
Week 1 struggle:
Firstly struggling with thoughts of deprivation and feeling as though I was being punished by not being allowed to have treats.
Week 1 epiphany:
Eating like this is actually a gift to my body and my brain ... not a punishment. Realized this after 5 days of eating well and then breaking the plan to eat a burger and chips, I had such a sluggish day the next day almost as though my body immediately struggled to process all the crap. So the gift is in giving good fuel, so the motor runs efficiently.
Week 2 Struggle:
Thinking about food constantly, from meal to meal ... checking the clock far too religiously to see when my next meal was.
Week 2 epiphany:
I am not living in a time of famine. Food will not run out or disappear if I stop thinking about it. Time spent doing things to distract myself from thinking so much meant I had a super productive week.
Week 3 struggle:
If I have a little treat here and there it won't matter.
Week 3 epiphany:
If I can still be losing weight and moving forward with an 80% effort in the kitchen, then imagine what I can achieve if I put a 100% effort into the kitchen!

So that brings us to today. My plan this week is to be ultra spot on with my food choices so I can see how much of a difference it makes to not have a little treat here and there  ... day 2 and so far so good but movies and dinner out tonight, so Lord give me strength.

On an AWESOME note ....

I cracked the triple digits and currently weigh 98.6kg.
Week 1 of the challenge helped me big time, giving me a loss of 1.9 and putting me under. Now all i need to do is keep at it, stay motivated...and just keep swimming, just keep swimming.
It has worked for me so far, so I'm hardly going to give it up anytime soon.

An exciting notion is that I have already achieved the goal I set myself all year to achieve, so time to set some new goals.

In 2013 I would like to get into the 80's .... there, I said it out loud.
We have 19 weeks of the year left and even at my slow pace of .5 a week that should get me to 89.1 which is the lightest I have ever been in my adult life. To get there this year would be fucking awesome ... pardon the french!

I'm excited, I'm revved, I think I can.
Jay xx

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Challenges ...

Geez we have many challenges in life don't we.

Sticking to a healthy eating plan and exercising seem to be the first things to go when challenges arise, well that's the scenario for me anyway.

It's as though I feel I'm being antisocial if I refuse to eat bread, drink wine and scoff dessert faster then the speed of light, when people are over. Add to that the times that routine goes out the window for school holidays.

I've had the kids home for two weeks and despite my best efforts to still go to gym every other day, eat well and walk daily ... I managed to put on 2.3kg. A pretty nasty amount considering I was still really active.

I was mighty pissed at that shocker when I weighed in. I was ready to throw in the towel and spent a full day burying my head in the sand and refusing to be nice to anyone!

The next day I decided my best tactic would be to pretend I never had that weigh in.
To carry on as though nothing happened, But ... to give it 100% and try and get myself back into it.

A lovely friend reminded me that its 80 percent food choices and 20 percent exercise.
So rather then kill myself at the gym I really nutted down and focused on my food.
I decided that rather than calorie count I would eat clean for the week.
So lots of protein, veg and fruit and eliminate the white stuff, soft drinks and sugar.

It has most definitely done the trick as I had got myself back up to 104.2 and after a week of honest hard work in all areas I'm now 100.8 ...
Woohoo so close to getting under the big 100.

It's been a real eye opener proving that it is my food choices letting me down. My exercise has stayed the same ... so yeah totally about what goes into my mouth.

Motivated by the results of my good honest effort, I have decided to enter 'Maxine's Shape up Challenge'
A few of the girls at gym are doing it and whilst they are all skinny minnies doing it to try and tone up, I'm doing it just so I can set myself a 12 week challenge.

See if I can stick to a nutrition plan and exercise guide for just 12 weeks. Maybe if I prove to myself that I can do that, then maybe...just maybe, I can stick to it for life.

Little steps...

I'm pretty excited about the challenge and the positive changes it will bring and I've booked and paid for my personal training starting with Lisa next week, so the timing is perfect.

Wish me luck.
Jay xx

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Personal training.

Just a quick midweek post to express my wowness 
 at the awesomeness of personal training.
I had my first freebie session with Lisa at gym today. 
She is the the instructor I have for my group fitness classes Pump and cycle.

Image via: here

 Because I get to see how motivational and supportive she is as an instructor I totally jumped at the chance when she announced she was taking on PT too.Well I'm broke ... so I jumped at the chance of a free session and when we get our tax returns I'll be investing in a few blocks of PT for sure.

Leading up to the session I got my usual butterflies in the stomach and almost talked myself out of it. I told myself I had pump the night before and cycle in the morning so I'd be tired already. But I just had to silence the little devil on my left shoulder and push through the butterflies so I could try something new and then decide if I was up for it or not.

Image via: here

Well, I'm glad to say I'm up for it.
We focused on resistance. Core strength and compound exercises. All the things I am struggling with at present.
Each round we started light, then went heavier, then heavier, then heavier till I could do no more. It was actually really awesome to see how far I could go, cause if I was doing it on my own I'd set it at one weight and do 2 sets of 12 and walk away. I was sweating, huffing and puffing and I walked away with my limbs trembling ... but I felt so bloody alive and hopeful for the future.

Wish I could bottle that feeling.

Lisa was able to push me, but still support me. She could see my limits and knew when I could get two more out. She made sure I used good technique and didn't hurt myself, but most definitely gave my body a bloody wake up and shake up.

I walked in to the session so worried I would embarrass myself by being such a wimp or die from trying too hard, but neither of my silly scenarios played out instead I walked away knowing that this is what I want and need to continue to the next stage of my fitness.
So, so glad that I don't have to go it alone.
Jay xx
Me walking home from Pump class on Tuesday.
Such a cold winter night, but refreshing after a hard workout.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Switching off the auto pilot ...

Well I've maintained my resolve and had a really good two weeks of eating well and exercising 6 session per week.
My weigh in day today has me at 102.9kg. Giving me 2.6kg off for the last 2 weeks. Pretty awesome. I'm chuffed.

 Image via here

I'm so glad I didn't let the minor gain from 2 weeks ago drag me down. If anything it made me stronger and more stubborn to get it off for good.
I have been having more and more thoughts about my food. Of course ... my whole day is thinking about food glorious food. What I can have what I cant have. Eat clean, go more protein, cut the carbs, cut the calories.

There is so much advice out there, it just makes it all so bloody overwhelming.
So one week I'm low carb high protein, next week I'm clean eating ... Don't know if I'm Martha or Arthur.

I know that in the grand scheme of things all of these programmes and eating plans are good, so even though I'm switching around and not really settling on one it's still progress. Not like I'm flicking between bad habits and good, it's all good. but maybe I should settle on something, just so I can stop obsessing about food so much.

I like all the principles of clean eating: no white stuff, heaps of fruit, veg and protein, only the good carbs etc etc ... but as you can see there ain't no sugar in there. Throughout all diets actually a reoccurring theme for our current times is that sugar and refined carbs are bad. Used to be that fat was bad, but now we all know about good fats and bad fats. Well with sugar, there are no good and bad. Just bad.

When I think back to weight watchers days, there appeal is that eating is about balance. You can have the odd chocolate bar or glass of wine so long as you eat in moderation. A whole block of Cadbury Turkish Delight is prob not a good thing but 4 squares is not going to undo all your hard work and at the same time you still get a little treat for the day.

I had a little sit down chat with Lisa today, planning some forthcoming PT sessions and she said 'you can exercise till your black and blue but if you go home and eat shit your wasting your time'.

Harsh but true I think.

I know that I'm getting fitter, and my heart muscle is grateful, but really ... I'm going to gym to lose weight!
So it's what I needed to hear. I need to stop kidding myself that going hard at gym is gonna make me the 80kg person I want to be.

I keep thinking if I weighed 80kg how much easier would it be to squat or tricep dip off the bench or chest press my own body weight. If there was 22.9kg less of me I could push it so much harder and how would I get to being 22.9kg lighter quicker ... stop eating all the shit.

I love my chocolate, I love cakes and bready delights and when I think of an all or nothing approach whereby I eliminate them completely they suddenly occupy my mind 24/7 so I think for me, I have to allow them a little. A little bit in moderation just to feel I am not some deprived chic on a diet that everyone feels sorry for.

I'll make sure my calories allow for it, I'll portion control and I'll be in charge.
I think that's the most important thing. I sometimes mindlessly eat these things when I'm not even hungry.
I'll just go, apple muffin on that tray, yumm. I do love an apple muffin. Next thing I know I'm eating the apple muffin!
What the ... I've had breakfast and morning snack, I'm not even hungry ...muffin be gone.
See, mental. Not in control. Someone else has my remote control and keeps pressing auto pilot.

So time to take back control. Eat well, eat nutritionally, allow for yummy snacks but be in charge of what they are, how big they are and when they are consumed.

Image via here

Something that I read in one of my brain training books was that as humans we are conditioned for rewards and when we see that apple muffin it triggers the reward center of our brain. From previous memories we know it's fluffy, soft and sweet. We sense it melting in our mouth like a buttery sugary explosion and we want to relive that sensation over and over again.
So if we want to retrain our brain we need to become aware when these objects activate our brains reward response and rather then allowing the normal progression of see treat, buy treat, eat treat, we need to consciously acknowledge the trigger ...say yumm apple muffin, I love apple muffins ... then we need to detour our brain from its hard wired response and say, as much as I love apple muffins, You know what! I've had breakfast I'm not even hungry I'm going to head home and get started on my jobs for the day.

Or insert what ever follow up sentence serves you in your situation. It might even be, jeez I love an apple muffin but you know what I'm aiming to lose 1 kg this week so I'm going to eat an apple instead.

So knowing all these things about how my brain gets it self into auto pilot and just makes it's own decisions I think I have come to the realisation of what my next step in this journey needs to be.

I need to take back control of my food choices and own them.

Onward and upward.
Have a great week,
Jay x

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Getting up and going ...

Well I had a minor set back last week as I had a gain on weigh in day.
I did the usual 'why, why,why, thing even though I suspected I might have a gain.

My suspicions were not because I'd had a bad week, on the contrary I had an awesome work out and food week.
But what I knew was that I'd upped my weights and done 3 pump classes, I was premenstrual and the day before weigh in I was out and about all day so I didn't workout and I didn't drink my water leaving me a bit bloated, retaining some fluid.

My gain was .5 which in the grand scale of things wasn't huge, but a plus is always scary.
It's funny because when I entered my weight into the online food diary I'm using on calorie it always gives you a little summary of your week and mine said 'don't be disheartened by small gains, ask yourself have you upped your weights, where are you in your menstrual cycle and have you been drinking your water?'

 Image and Calorie King site: click here

All the questions I knew the answers to. A nice reminder though, that despite all our hard work sometimes a gain will creep in on the scales.

Once upon a time, reason or no reason, a gain would be enough to make me say to myself that it was not working and it was time to quit. But my resolve is stronger now and a minor setback tells me that i just need to persevere and continue doing all the great things I have put in place for the success of my long terms goals.

I have no doubt that this Fridays weigh in will have me right back on track and to make sure I haven't skipped a beat with my workouts. Saturday was cycle, Sunday was my rest day and today was my 6am start.

Getting up and going in the mornings is so bloody hard, especially during winter. It's pitch black and this morning we were at 5 degrees. Brrr.
But I have set a permanent alarm on my phone to wake me 5.30 every Monday and I tell myself that Monday is the only day I do such an early workout so just get up and get on with it.
I always have to push myself to get up and out that door, but once there I'm warmed up within 5 mins and an hour later I'm walking home feeling so alive and ready for the day, before my hubby and kids have even woken up for the day.

Today and every Monday really, I have burnt a huge 700 calories before the street lights have even switched off and the day has begun.
Such an awesome way to start the day and the whole week for that matter.

Looking forward to weigh in this Friday.
Hope you have an awesome week,
Jay x

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Figuring out what's working ...

Weigh in day today and I'm down to 104.7 woohoo. 

 Image via: here.

That's almost 10kg gone, and so much closer to my goal of getting under 100kg ... hoobloodyray!
I had a huge loss this week of 1.7kg. Well huge for me, as I'm usually a .5kg loser.

So of course I have had to sit back and analyze a little, as I do, to see what it was that may have done the trick this week. In retrospect I think it's not one thing I did or didn't do, more-so a combination of a few things.

Firstly, I have upped my workouts.
After my little rant on the last blog post about how doing the 80/20 thing of being good 5 days of the week and having the weekends off just doesn't work for me. I decided to test the theory of working out 6 days and having one day rest.
What I was doing before was actually having Thursdays off gym (so I could be a good mummy and do reading at school) as well as making the weekends gym free.
I was telling myself that I'm walking my preppy to and from school everyday ...collectively 80 minutes of walking a day for me, so that should allow me Thursdays off.

 Me walking in my spiffy, new runners.

Reality is, that all that walking is 10,000 steps a day for me, which is what is classed as a NORMAL amount of activity. You know ... normal for all those peeps who work outside of home etc ... so really that just puts me at healthy, doesn't rank me as someone going above the minimum daily movement requirement to actually be loosing weight. So yeah, maybe i was lying to myself a bit about how hard I was working!
Anyways, I picked up a cardio workout on Thursday and also added a pump class on Sunday. Giving me 6 days of working out. I also changed things up a bit to make sure I was getting 3 cardio sessions, 3 weights sessions and my yoga class. Which means some days I stay longer to fit weights in as well as cardio.

 Image via here

O.k so what else. I have still continued with eating extra protein.
I'm trying to have protein at every meal.
Nuts, yogurt, eggs, meat, fish, legumes, protein bars or shakes. Sorta dropped off on the shakes and protein bars only because they are a bit expensive but really there are plenty of readily available good sources of protein that I don't need to depend on them.
I have also maintained having breakfast and morning and afternoon snacks. So I'm seemingly getting more food in. Better quality food though, so it seems to be working.

Lastly ...sleep.
I ran out the Valerian tea and was hesitant to get more as it was really hard to have drink such a foul smelling tea every night. So I went 4 nights without and fell back into my restless sleep, tired day mantra aughhh...
I gave up on that pretty quick and decided I need to head back to the health food store. This time I was going to try the Valerian tablets. I saw Blackmores and Natures Own had sleep remedies too so I took them all up to the counter for assistance. The lady recommended the Natures Own saying one of her reps who is also a naturopath swore by them. So who am I to disagree.

Image via here

 Supposedly it has something in it to make you not only get to sleep quicker and sleep deeper but also to make you wake feeling refreshed. Imagine that, waking up ready to face the world well rested. That would be awesome.
 I have been taking it for 3 days now and each day I am feeling progressively better. Not waking up with a headache and feeling less like I have a constant cloud hanging over my head.
The girl at the gym desk even said gosh you're perky today... woohoo, must be working.

So yeah, I think they are the few big things of note.
Sleeping better, eating regularly, having protein at every meal and working out 6 days a week.

Oh and ... I totally forgot. Stressing less.
How could I forget that one. Something one of the trainers said during the week was stress less. As it has such a hold on you and really holds you back from accepting your new life and the changes you are making.

Image via here

Now as you can imagine telling a stress head to stress less is just dumb.
If I could I would for sure, but it's somewhat inbuilt. A safety mechanism of sorts. I can't say it always serves me well, but it is so ingrained I wouldn't know where to begin.
So... I downloaded a meditation app and have done that twice this week.
I have also changed my inner dialogue from 'why aren't I losing weight faster' to 'I'm doing the best I can for my body and even if I only lose .5 a week that will still add up to a substantial amount in 6 months or a year so its all good' and if I reached for chocolate or cake I did a count of my calories for the day to see if I had room for it then ate it and thought, 'yum just what I was in the mood for' ...instead of my usual immediate guilt and thoughts of 'well you've blown it again'

So they were biggies I think in helping my head stress less so that my body could make some progress. Letting go a little, I guess, of the berating negative comments, cause they sure as hell weren't serving me.

Well considering it has all worked in the last 2 weeks, I shall maintain status quo and keep on keeping on and you never know I might just get to 99.9kg before end of July after all...and if not I WILL get there real soon.

Jay xx

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Sleeping and relaxing ...

I've mentioned before that I am not a good sleeper my head just runs a million miles an hour and I have real trouble switching off. A lot of the time I think this is why I spend my days so tired reaching for sticky buns and chocolate bars to give me some false hope that I can make it through the day.

 Image via: here

So over the process of this journey I have tried a few things to get better sleep.
Namely, cutting off eating at 8pm, which honestly I manage about 80% of the time. The other 20% a cookie or two slips in with a cuppa tea or a hot chocolate. It's a lifetime of habits here I tells yah. It's not gunna just happen overnight.
Anyways I digress ... I have also tired going to bed earlier, switching off t.v computer etc, reading before bed and lastly relaxing oils. Some lavender and bergamot to rub on the neck before bed.
Still, unfortunately no luck. I lie awake staring at the wall listening to hubby snore!

So this week I took myself off to the health food store and got some Valerian root tea.

Image via: here

I'd heard of it's properties before and when I read the packet it said helps stop that internal chatter to promote a healthful night sleep. Bingo. Just what I needed.
So firstly I have to say it smells foul, it taste like a combination of green tea and dirt but beyond that I do believe it's helping. The first three nights of taking it I had some pretty mad dreams. Really lucid, loud, strange dreams and not just one...many. It was like my body hadn't entered a deep sleep for months and was trying to catch up on all that deep dream processing that we do.
Madness. So I was waking up somewhat bewildered trying to catch up with my dreams that seemed to be in fast forward.

As the week has progress the dreams have slowed down to real time and I am definitely sleeping better. Only waking once maybe to go to the toilet, instead of my usual waking 5 to 8 times for no reason. So yeah ... onto a  winner I think.

Now the other point I wanted to discuss was relaxing.

 Image via: here

Not the put your feet up and have a massage type, sorry.

I did a little experiment this week to see what effect it had on my weight loss, that I totally take the foot off the pedals and relax my eating and exercise every weekend. I don't go to gym, I eat what I want.

My weigh in day is on a Friday and on Friday I weighed 106.8 woohoo, new territory seeing that 6 in there.
Then as per usual the weekend progressed as normal and Monday I thought, I might just weigh myself and see if I change at all over the weekend. Sure enough I had gained.
I had gained the entire .8 that I had lost the week before. I was a bit shattered as I'm learning my body will put weight on just from thinking about cake...unfair!

So i let the week progress as it would. Gym every day, eating well and on Fri I had only lost .2.
What I'm seeing is that I work so hard Mon to Fri, lose .5kg ...slack off on the weekend gain .5 then work all week again to lose the .5 I put on over the weekend and hopefully some more.
I know some people can do the whole 80/20 thing and have it work for them but the proof is in the pudding that this does not work for me.
Actually I've come to realize a plan like that is what I would do for maintenance. To stay the same weight once I reach goal. But it won't work as a weight loss plan.

It was even more confirmed this morning when during our Pump class our trainer was giving us a pep talk. The song that plays during stretches is 'Forever' and she was saying 'it is guys'.

 Want to listen to the song, click : here

If you want to look great, feel fit and be healthy, it is forever. Exercise well forever.. it's not a fad or a get fit quick thing, it's a commitment to change your life for the better, forever.

Gosh it probably sounds all a bit extreme, for newbies, myself included. But what I'm seeing is yes you can have carbs, yes you can eat chocolate, but balance it in with a healthy day, and yes you can skip your 30mins exercise today but go harder tomorrow.

If you stop, so does your body.

Gosh you know, none of this is rocket science. None of it and we/I trivialize it so much looking for loopholes and quick fixes and each and every fat girl knows exactly how to lose weight.
Eat less, move more.
It's just applying it and convincing our brains that it wants to do it, that's the struggle.
Man oh man, I tell you what little ol' brain. we'll do it.
Damn it, we'll do it and we'll do it Forever ....
Jay xx

Monday, May 20, 2013

Looking for Energy ...

So we are now up to date. I did a few backdated posts to cover my journey so far and bring you up to speed and now we are at today. Yay.

I started this journey Feb 4th 2013, at 114.5kg and I'm currently 106.9 kg.
My first goal is to get under 100kg. My over all goal is to get healthy. By that I mean, you know those charts that tell you what you are when taking into account your height and weight. Well for the most part of my adult life I have been morbidly obese. Such a yucky term.
But it is what it is!
My aim is to get into the healthy range.

O.k so here is a snazzy table I found.
There I am at clinically obese. aughhh...
and where I want to be is o.k. How funny that they categorized it like that, but there you go.
All I want to be is o.k
So to be o.k at my 5foot6 height means achieving a weight between 58 and 70kg.

I have never been below the 89kg i achieved for a brief stint as an adult, so for some obvious reasons I feel that going for the bottom of the o.k range is very unrealistic. So lets aim for the top of that o.k range and say my ideal goal weight is 70kg.

Sheesh, imagine getting into the 70's
Wouldn't know what it would be like. I remember getting weighed in grade 6 at Primary school during health week and being told I was 69kg.
I was like woohoo, I'm the winner, biggest number there.
My happiness soon faded when the teacher pulled me aside and said Jaylene, I weigh 58kg and I'm grown up. Being heavy is not a good thing.
So I guess I wasn't really winning after all.

But onward and upward ...

This post is about looking for energy.
I have tackled the exercise, the calories and learnt about the maths behind losing weight and even though I am watching my calories, I was still putting the wrong things in to have this engine of mine running with any gusto.
Just barely getting by really.

So after hitting a wall, yet again ... rather then give up I had a chat to one of the trainers at the gym. I didn't pay for her advice so I was very humbled that she took me under her wing and could see the utter desperation in my eyes. Her advice was ... you'll never guess?
Jay, you gotta eat breakfast.
You just gotta and even if it feels unnatural and your not hungry, tell your body that it is an appointment or meeting that even though it may not want to go to it, you have to. It can't be missed. So schedule it in and force yourself to do it.
Image via: here

The ideal run down of food for a day is:
In your break fast at 7-8am, include protein and carbs.
In your first snack at 10am have protein and fruit
Lunch at 12 have carbs and protein and veg
Snack at 3 have protein
Dinner have protein and veg

Don't have dessert.

Load the beginning of your day up with protein and carbs and ease off in calories as your day progresses. We do not need a big calorie dense dinner, just so we can sit on the couch and go to bed.
As of course... what happens is your body works overtime trying to process it all, you don't sleep well, you wake up tired, rush around skip breakfast and the whole vicious cycle starts again.

So I have been changing the way I eat, big time.

Brekky is porridge, or eggs and spinach or peanut butter on toast.
Morning snack is natural yogurt w' blueberries and seeds.
Lunch is ham or turkey or fish with salad
Afternoon snack is a choc protein bar, or tuna and crackers
dinner is meat and three veg.

well ideally that's what it is. Sometimes we have eaten out or I've made the old favourites like enchiladas or lasagne so the carbs are still creeping in at night, but for the most part and my big aim is to make sure I'm eating breakfast and a morning snack and trying really hard to have protein at every meal.

I lost .8 this week which has been my biggest loss for one week and I don't wake up so groggy with an instant headache.
so fingers crossed I can make it stick.
Jay x

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Dealing with food...

So I have hit hump day/week/month recently and overcome it, Yay me.
What's hump day?
Well it's that magic 3 month mark, round about the time I would usually give up.
The time I would usually say that I am working too damn hard and getting too small a result, so I quit.

But I didn't quit, I have kept pushing myself to stick to this plan.
I Gotta see the year out even if it kills me!
Image via: here

What my focus has been on this month is food.
I know I have been 100% with my exercise. Mixing cardio, resistance and even meditation and Yoga. So that side of things is spot on. As per usual I seem to have trouble coordinating the two. The whole eating well AND exercising.

So I googled away to figure out my BMR. What it is that I consume in calories on a daily basis just to be me, present status.
It would seem fat me at current activity level eats 2200 calories a day. Which seems a lot considering I skip breakfast, don't eat snacks and essentially just have lunch and dinner.
What I myself know about my food choices for lunch and dinner are that they are stodgy. I love my breads and pastas. So even though I'm only eating twice a day ... it's calorie dense food all at the back end of the day.
A period of time when my activity has stopped and life is about cooking dinner, hanging with the kids and sitting on the couch.

So as I'm backtracking here to tell you what I did for the month I can say I thought what I was doing was good ... but it hasn't entirely been working!

Firstly, I've been counting my calories.
For the first week I just ate as normal as I wanted to see what I was doing wrong.
Now I am not the typical biggest loser contestant who has a table full of golden brown fat laden food as my before shot. I eat relatively nutritionally well, mainly as a result of having irritable bowl syndrome.
This means if I was to have nachos for dinner, washed down with some cider I'd make myself very ill for the next two days.
So my problem is not fat. I have a low fat diet ...
My problem is sugar. Sugar and refined carbs. Is that what they're called?
Not the good carbs you get from whole grains and vegetables. The bad carbs you get from white pasta, foccacias and such.

Image via: here

They supposedly turn to sugar in your system and are calorie dense. So even though I think I eat like a bird...guess what it still adds up to 2200 a day.

So after week 1, I could see 2200 was my daily average which is what one would eat if they want to stay 114.5kg. As I was working out so much I was earning 500+ calories per day to act as a deficit to my 2200, bringing me down to 1800 calories a day.
Which meant a 2500 to 3500 deficit over a week, which da da da equals a .5 weightloss.

Any wonder I'm not losing big numbers? I learnt...that 1 pound/.5kilo equals 3500 calories.
So if you want to lose 1 kilo a week you need to eliminate 7000 calories a week either through eating less or moving more.

Now I don't know about you, but for me, losing 500 calories in one day takes about an hour and a half at the gym.
This has been my tactic this month. To work out mon to fri and eliminate 500 cals a day so I can continue to lose .5 per week.

It has been working as I'm down another 2kg ... but ... I'm so bloody tired all the time. Waiting for this mystery boost in daily energy that all these weight loss programmes promise.

So at the end of this month, I hit another wall and decided that next month my focus needs to be on building up my metabolism, to have more energy and so I can start to manage more then just exercise and eating.

We all know how to do this:
Sleep well. 7.5 hours plus.
Drink plenty of water
eat 3 square meals, and 2 snacks
build muscle

I'm only doing the last two!
Go figure why I have no energy Hey!
So onward and upward, next month is all about energy building.
Jay xx

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Upping the cardio ...

For the last month I have made some big changes to my exercise work outs. Adding three cardio sessions to my regime of walking 5 days, resistance on two days and yoga 1 day.

I wear a heart rate monitor when I exercise, so I know to be working above 125 and preferably 140 to 160 to be in the fat burning zone. I'm just doing the treadmill, cross trainer and bike for my cardio workouts and making sure I have my little mini iPod for music to keep me focused.

If i forget my music it's such a deterrent to here myself heavy breathing and struggling, so gotta make sure the music is pumping.

 For this month so far I have only lost another 2kg. I hear myself say ONLY 2kg and think to myself I'm being unkind and not celebrating my achievements and it's true I'm not.
I'm still knocking myself for thinking this is still not good enough. I'm working so darn hard and I look at myself in the mirror and feel as though I'm looking fitter and thinner, but the scales are barely budging.

In honesty I have not been calorie counting or counting points or monitoring my food at all. So i sorta feel I must be failing there for all my hard work to be reaping such a small reward. So for next month my focus will shift to food, to see if I can't start making some major improvements.

At this rate my goal of getting to double digits wont happen till after July....aughhh...
I have zero patience!

Jay x

Monday, March 18, 2013

Heart pumpin' ...

So after 6 weeks of walking and resistance I'm finding I have clear skin, shiny hair and a head that is not so foggy.
But I still don't sleep well and in effect still find my energy flagging during the day.

I have lost about 3kg so far, which by biggest loser standards should be the result after one week, but knowing my body and how it works, this is average for 6 weeks effort. About .5 per week.

Sorta sucky really as I feel like I'm so restrained with my food  and so committed with my activity. Rain, hail or shine I'm out there walking and we have had some spaz weather of late too. A heat wave where it was over 30 for 10 days straight.
Lovely old Melbourne usually has heat waves in summer for sure, but we have 3 or 4 days followed by an awesome storm to wash it all away. So to have this constant heat has meant sleepless nights and me getting home from gym purely exhausted.
I'm not getting much work done in the wee hours between school drop off and pick up, but I'm hoping once I get fitter I'll have more energy during the day to help me get into the right head space for creating again.

I have started yoga in the last 2 weeks. I did a short course a decade ago and loved it, so when I saw it as a class at gym, I finally worked up the courage to go.

 Image via: here

I tell you what, I sweat more in there then I do on my walks. I know it helps clear out toxins and open up all sorts of spaces in your body to allow energy to flow etc ... But that first lesson was a killer. Who'd have thunk a bit of stretching would be so hard.

I actually came home, threw up, then slept.

Makes me think there is a whole lot of bad chemistry in my body at the moment. Heading into my second class a week later, I was so scared. So anxious that I would feel unwell again, but I didn't.
I walked away feeling so clear headed and free, so I'll be keeping it up for sure.

So at 6 weeks in I think I'm ready to up the exercise and get the heart pumpin'. See if I can't get some better results with more cardio happening. I have done gym on and off, often enough to know my way around treadmills, elliptical trainers and bikes, so I'll give them a go and push on to stage two.

Wish me luck, Jay x

Friday, February 15, 2013

My start tactic ...

Beginning my weight loss journey this year did not come about as a result of a new years resolution. Rather it was something I decided to do once my littlest one started primary school.

This is for two reasons. Firstly because I have made the commitment to walk and do drop off and pick up at school everyday and secondly because I walk past my gym everyday that I walk him to school. So it seemed an easy transition, school drop off, gym, then home to do some work.

Our walk to school is 25 minutes. So for me that's 4 x 25 minutes walk by the time I go there and back home for each trip. That in itself is a big addition to my daily exercise.

 I work for myself, which mostly entails sewing at a machine, sitting at a computer or my one shift a week in the shop that I have my stock in. So I'm guessing, I don't even get 1000 steps a day in, let alone the recommended 10,000 a day we all should be doing just to be healthy.

To begin with my plan is to commit to walking to school and back everyday as well as going to gym 3 times a week to do resistance training.

It probably seems quite a small start but I know that I am so unfit that I could only manage a small beginning without burning myself out.

All the things  I read about resistance training tell me that it's the number one thing to do to boost your metabolism and give you more energy.

Energy is something I struggle with big time.
I have been diagnosed as having chronic fatigue syndrome, but ... a big part of me thinks that this is a diagnosis that doctors give you when they can't find any other reason for you  being so tired and depleted of energy all the time.

I think I eat bad, I sleep terribly, I don't exercise and I stress far too much about ridiculously unimportant things.
So I tend to believe these are reasons why I am so lethargic ALL THE TIME.

My plan anyway is to ease myself into this bout of healthfulness a bit gentler then I usually would, so that  hopefully I can sustain it a bit longer and of course if my energy comes back I will change it around and up my program.

Will keep you posted.
Jay xx

Friday, February 8, 2013

The stats ...

All important in these weight loss journeys is marking the beginning
so we have somewhere to gauge our efforts against.
So for the record:
I weigh 114.5kg. 
I'm 5 foot 6
37 years old.

I have written down my body measurements somewhere, so will add them later but so you can paint the picture, I'm a size 22 in pants and size 18-20 in tops.
My stomach measurement is bigger then my bust measurement, suffice to say that my greatest aim is to lose my gut.
It hasn't always been like that. Probably just the last ten years really. I usually carry weight around my hips, thighs and butt, for some reason though I now appear to be 8 months pregnant at all times!
Not sure if that's something to do with getting older, but what I do know s that it's the worst place to be carrying extra weight as far as your health is concerned.

So it's gotta go!

Image via: here

Monday, February 4, 2013

Another beginning ...

I say another beginning, as like most overweight people, this is not the first time I have tried to lose this extra weight that insists on following me around.

I have been over 100kg my entire adult life, with exception of two times that I managed to get myself down to 89kg ish.

I'm 37 now, so that makes it 20 odd years that I have battled with weight issues.

The two times I lost weight and got down to the 80's were both at the sacrifice of social life, and so much more. I didn't go out, I worked two jobs, ate barely anything and worked out everyday. So it's no surprise that both those times it didn't stick. It wasn't at all sustainable.

I've tried the soup diet, herbalife, weight watchers, no carbs, high protein, etc...Like most overweight people, I've tried it all.

I think... I know, where I fall down is lacking consistency. I don't ever do any of these for any consistent period of time. So I can not say to you that all the previous mentioned diet plans don't work, cause they do and they worked for me. But only for a week or two, or a month or two, till I went back to my old ways.

Going back to your old ways of course, means going back to your old weight.

We are such creatures of comfort and if it's easy, requires no effort and warms the cockles of my heart like only a good sticky date pudding can ... then that's what I'm gunna fall back on every time.

So what's different this time ...

 Image via:  here

Well, after many years, I have come to the realisation that what I lack is the commitment to see something through beyond that honeymoon period.

I honestly have a 3 month threshold, where i will be so strict and really motivated and then I'll think I'm working so hard, sacrificing so much and achieving so little. I don't lose 1 kilo a week like those chicks on t.v I lose .2 or .5 if I'm lucky. So I just become defeated.
I don't see the glory in my small achievements, I just see the failure in not losing it quick enough or not being able to live life like my friends who seem to eat and drink whatever they want whilst maintaining goddess like bodies.

So what happens is I make new years resolutions, i work like a dog for 3 months, lose 7 kilos then give up. The next 3 months I put the 7 kilos back on, then it hits mid year and I want to look good for summer so I start again. I go well for 3 months, then party season starts, good weather, daylight savings etc. lots of things that make me say why do I need to diet I should be out enjoying life.

So again...I give up.

You see my vicious cycle hey!

I lose the same 7 kilos , over and over and over again.

So here's my tactic this year.


don't stop after 3 months, push through.
Push through for a year, just keep on keeping on and see if we can overcome the helpless cycle. I know ...god knows I know, it will be slow. But even at .5 per week after one year that would be 26kg, which is a hell of a lot better then 7kg.

So that's it in a nutshell.

I know and you know how to lose weight.
Eat less, move more.
It's not rocket science. It's just a matter of applying what we know and sticking to it.

Now in honesty I'm writing this reflectively, I have been on this new beginning for four months now.
At a few stages I have had to reassess, change things up and keep myself motivated.
At each little bump in the road I find myself going to the journal and writing it all down to try and clarify things in my head. Well I don't actually have a journal, so there are just ramblings scattered around the house here and there on odd notepads.
Reminders of struggles, nutritional facts and things I've learnt about myself.
Seeing these the other day made me think I should really put those ramblings all in one place so I can make sense of them, hence beginning this blog.
I'll try and backtrack a bit an add the aha moments and the things I've discovered over the last four months to bring me up to today.

I don't really plan to share it with the community that I have built through my craft blog as it's a side of me that is a bit mental really. A defeated me, a me that struggles and stresses far too much about little things and the only people that might want to read about that are peeps in the same boat.

So if you have found me through some random search or weight loss forum, welcome.
Lets defeat these demons together.

If you have found this blog through my Finki exploits and you are thin, healthy and energetic...feel free to comment and share your insights to help me on my journey.

So onward and upward, here's hoping 2013 is the year I get on top of this, once and for all.
Jay xx