Monday, August 31, 2009

I'm not really here

Please let it snow. Please let it snow. Please let it snow. Thank you.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Get down and give me 50

I think I'm going to rename this blog the "Muscle Discovery Blog". That's if the last few posts are anything to go by. The only problem of course is that in a few weeks I will probably fall head over heels for something new. My attention span is like that.

Now about my favourite topic; muscles. A few weeks back when I did my assessment at the gym I had to write down some goals. Three to be precise because the form only had enough space for that many. I meant to post them as motivation, but clearly I was more interested in discussing other things at the time, so here they are.

1. Get down to a ridiculously low body fat percentage. It seemed achievable until I found out my current percentage, then it became ridiculous. Anyhoo...
2. Run 5K in under 25 minutes. Personal best...umm the only time I timed it...was 31.5 minutes. But you know running is soooo last month. Which brings me to;
3. Muscles - be able to do one proper, real, not-sissy-on-my-knees push-up and same for pull ups. I didn't have high standards which is why I would been utterly thrilled with one.

I've tried again and again, just to see if maybe by some miracle I could manage either. With push ups I could get down, but up was not so good. And pull-ups? They are just about hanging on the bar right?

Until today. Yes, she formerly with no upper body strength can do a full push-up! So take that trainer who said I couldn't do it without the gym. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go feed my muscles and gently rub 'em and tell them how much I love 'em :-)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Digging out the dirt

I counted wrong, or maybe it was wishful thinking but there were 8 holes to dig. They are the footings for our brand new deck which should be finished in time for summer. Hooray for cocktails and barbeque's and summer. Shortly after reaching depth, they were filled with concrete and stirrups and it's funny just how much faster a hole is to fill than to dig.

Now I could wax lyrical about how much I love exercise and strength training - wow was that a back flip!? - but suffice to say that I have found the reason why I train. And it has nothing to do with looking hot. It's all about being able to do stuff - fun stuff like kayaking or slightly less fun stuff being Bob the Builder's apprentice for the weekend.

In any case I love the feeling of raw power and of being useful and having the energy to keep going all day alongside my husband.

Quit with the moaning
The weather gods clearly thought it would be a wicked good idea to give us summer in the middle of winter. Apparently they've been listening to me moan from my frozen like state for long enough. So the weekend was unseasonably hot at over 30 degrees C. That's like a million degrees Fahrenheit. I kid.

Hot days working in the sun just beg for a bad attitude to come out. Did it? Nope. We watched "Sunday Too Far Away" a movie from the golden era of Australian cinema about the life of sheep shearers. In comparison what I was doing by digging a few holes seemed minor as opposed to the back breaking labour of shearing? Nothing at all. So I decided that not a peep would escape from my mouth about heat, sweat or tiredness. The only thing to be heard from me was some off key singing.

And hats off to a good attitude. I so thoroughly accepted the fact that I would be exhausted by the end of Sunday that I ended up feeling no where near that bad. So instead of driving we walked to my mom's for dinner. And then I wouldn't shut up the whole time. Attention seeking? Moi?

Good attitudes are wicked cool.
Whining is draining.
It's been two days since I worked my muscles. Guess what that means!?!

Friday, August 21, 2009

I'm crazy about muscle

The warm weather is persisting to my delight. There is nothing I like better than the feel of spring in the air, which would be when it's warm enough to stand in the shade wearing a breezy top and still be warm. So the definition of spring is when the mercury is at 28 degrees.

This means that all around the country writers must be furiously typing away at their keyboards with the one article title that screams summer is just around the corner - "Get a bikini ready body." Well whatever.

They always say that you should dress to flaunt your best assets. And with a couple of singlet wearing days already behind me, I figure that this year's swimsuit will have to be arm/shoulder/bicep highlighting. Cover everything else up, but show off those arms! It's actually sun smart too.

Yup, I'm smitten. The one who just a few months ago whined bitterly about how boring strength training was is now constantly flexing 'em, you know just to make sure they're still there. In fact, this week I've kept having to slowly back away from the dumbbells while rationally reasoning with myself. Less is step backwards...less is more...another step towards the door.

So my arms are aching from yesterday and yet I dream of tomorrow. No, I will not be grabbing the dumbbells at dawn - yeah, like I'd get up at dawn! Nope tomorrow I get to dig 6 large holes and if that won't make my biceps bulge, I don't know what will. Bring on summer. Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Either food or coherent thoughts

These last few days I haven't been able to string together more than a sentence. Usually at this point my brain screams 'ok, that's 14 words, now give me food!' And so begins the down part of weight loss.

Other than to say that the body adjusts very, very quickly to things, I won't go further for fear of sounding silly and spreading misinformation.

It's like this; two weeks ago I started eating more on the recommendation of the trainer at the gym. Embarrassingly, for fear of eating too much I started logging kilojoules. Not only did I feel full - very full some meals - my pants felt looser, like almost wearable except for the sitting down part.

Then we were away and on the pretext of needing to eat more, I heartily dug into the wine, cheese and scones. Taking note of the fact that after those 5 days my pants still felt loose I continued to eat happily.

And then this week, I decided to do something stupid. I figured if the 28 degree days are anything to go by, then I won't have much hope of wearing my beloved pants at all this winter.

So knuckling down and getting serious I went back to eating the amount of food I was two weeks ago. Except what seemed like a feast then, now feels like the start of a massive famine. I'm hungry all the time.

And here's the bit I wanted to avoid writing because I don't know what I'm talking about. My knowledge is cobbled together from the glossy pages of magazines and numerous strolls through bloggyland - most notably Leigh Peele's blog.

Right, so I think have just done a re feed, by fooling my body into thinking that the famine was over and it had begun raining cheese again. Now that the sun has come out, my body is pleading for more cheese (and preferably some wine to go with) while working it's way through the spares it had put aside for a sunny, non-cheese raining day. Eventually it will work out that the cheese drought has started and it will become more efficient with the resources it has. Which is the point I started at two weeks ago.

Now, when I first read about re feeds I thought they sounded like an awesome idea especially created for gluttonous weekends full of cheese. But in fact, this is actually more painful than I had expected. There is one motivating factor however, which is the fit of those pants which I can now sit down in AND breath. Bargain. Just the small price of constant hunger to pay for it.

Friday, August 14, 2009

So that's what a Camelbak is good for

....look, it's going in a glass first, it's not like I'm drinking it straight from the barrel....

....well how else do you suggest I get it out when the tap isn't co-operating??...

....Aged? It's been stuck in there for two years....ok, a little less...but not much...

....No, I don't think I should be left home alone either :-)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Weekend away

I've been away camping the last 5 days. I always mean to write that in advance, but somehow blogging instead of packing on Friday night would not have been cool. Something about pulling my weight or some such nonsense.

I wanted to be a tourist in my own country. We never do that, instead flying overseas (or Tasmania, either way) to look at historic buildings, gorgeous gardens, drink wine and eat cheese. So I googled and googled and googled and ended up with a list easily to fill in 10 days.

We patted sheep - they are soft and curly! Yeah, city girl, I know.

Watched em' being shorn and herded, while listening to a yarn or two.

We tasted loads of wine, savoured cheese platters and wandered around looking at gardens, vineyards, wetlands and even (alleged) mountains.

Oh and walked avoiding these critters, hugged trees and gazed at the stars.

Saw the light at the end of the tunnel, before eating some heavenly lavender scones and hitting the MTB trail.

Ate a cheese ball...after trying some more wine and looking at another wonderful garden.

The best bit? Forgetting about fat, health and fitting in exercise. Moving all day long. Eating when hungry, mostly often and a lot. Not having cravings. No mirrors - lucky since I forgot to bring a comb; fingers are a wonderful invention. Forget about goals or plans for where I want to be in 6 months time.

In the car on the way we talked about MizFit's 'Unapologetically Myself'. Leaving everything behind a few hundred kilometres of bitumen, I decided to live it. Be in the moment. Feel comfortable in my skin. Accept all my peculiarities.

It felt amazing. Now the challenge is to carry that feeling forward today, tomorrow and next week.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Saying bye to crazy thoughts

It's the fourth day of eating more and amazingly I haven't turned into a gigantasaurus. Yet. Well if it hasn't happened in 3 whole days, I suspect it probably won't. Usually you can see yesterdays 3 pieces of cake right...there on my hips. So my freak out was unfounded.

But, I've been following my food intake closely. Like counting kilojoules. Oh yeah. Apparently I'm happy to do it when trying to eat more, not so great when trying to eat less. Then again I don't need much help with that! It also helps that the dialogue goes something like this:

- I'll eat this, this and this today. Hmm, not enough.
- Ok, I'll eat this too! Still not enough.
- How about this? Well, I could still do with a little more.
- What else can I eat. Damn it there's not enough food in this house!

Would you be surprised to know that I don't have sugar cravings much? That I'm starting to feel hungry all the time again? That cycling was eeeasssy the other day? That my biceps look like they've grown?

Speaking of spending inordinate amounts of time in front of the mirror admiring my biceps. I had some crazy thoughts the other day that needed squelching and fast. I've pretty much settled on two strategies that work well for me:

1. Appeal to my vanity. Stand in front of the mirror and admire all the bits that I like about myself. Point out all the changes, the muscles that are growing and sometimes even laugh a little at the jiggly bits, because they're a part of me too, so I try to do that lovingly. Try on clothes that now fit and ones that used to but now fall off. The other option;

2. Stop thinking about it. Do something else. Especially something creative where I can't think about feeling bad. It's so easy to spend hours worrying and wondering (and dare I say, reading about new exercises or wonder foods) how the next few kilo's will come off, as well as weighing and measuring. At the end of the day, the hard work comes from doing not worrying- eating well, exercising regularly. It doesn't actually take long to do those things, you know, 3-6 meals per day and half an hour of exercise. Less is more with weights. Sometimes it's better to do what needs to be done, then step away and not think about it. Good things come to those who (put the hard work in then) wait.

There you go, my strategies for pressing the "crazy thoughts" off button. They're polar opposites depending on what is appropriate. Both make me feel good about myself. So what do you do to make yourself feel better when the crazy thoughts come knocking?

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

A difficult day for Jen

I'm just thinking about Jen today. You never expect a tragedy like this to occur to yourself or someone you know in the flesh or not. It's a shock and there are no words to express it or words that can heal their pain. So today I just wanted to send out a prayer for her and her family.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The other extreme

The only time someone has ever told me that I'm not eating enough was my grandmother. She'd served up soup, followed by an enormous plate of pierogi -a yummy Polish potato dumpling dish drizzled with melted butter - and then some pastries which I had to refuse because I couldn't move. Well, my aunt has actually said the same thing after meals of similar epic proportions. But let's say that outside of Poland, no one has ever said I don't eat enough. Except for the trainer.

When he told me I should add in some food to what I eat daily, apart from protein shakes that is, I got anxious. If I eat more I'll put on weight right? So I ignored what he said for the most part until Friday when feeling full of spite I worked my upper body as hard as I could at the outdoor gym. Upon returning home I ate a 'huge' recovery snack and immediately felt sure that I had eaten so much that I wouldn't fit into my pants the next day. So I got busy calculating and found that he was right. I'm generally not eating enough, at least by rule of thumb calculations for women.

What's weird is that it happened in a fairly natural way. Originally I started eating a little less and kept going with that approach which made me feel great. Then I noticed that I wasn't getting as hungry as I used to. In fact these days I'm rarely hungry which seems like a blessing. I also fill up very quickly so it's not hard to eat less. I thought everything was going rather well.

Obviously it's a big deal performance and fat loss wise, but what frightens me most is that I'm scared to eat more. That seems really bad and alarm bells are ringing inside my head. There's some nasty thoughts coming back into my head about my body image as well.

So what to do except eat more, lift more and press the "crazy thoughts" off button.

fleet phospho soda