Picked up some new shoes after a wonderful experience at BlackToe Running (A++, highly recommend) and gave them a whirl with Adrian tonight. The shoes? Awesome. The shin splints? Nearly all gone. My run? Painful.
The first half was physically painful. The second half was emotionally unpleasant. I’ve been thinking a lot about where I was when I started this journey. Mostly because I’m finally at the point with my therapist where I’m able to look back on a lot of painful, awful, muddy stuff with a clearer mind and a little bit of humour. But also because I’ve been getting a lot of questions about how to stay motivated in regards to the gym and being active.
The truth is, working out often hurts. It’s uncomfortable, painful sometimes, sweaty and gross and there’s heartburn and sore muscles and running noses and tears. I can’t think of a single workout where some muscle didn’t go “what the f do you think you’re doing there, lady?” But 6 months ago I would have done anything to feel something. I spent months in a fog of numbness. The only emotions I seemed to feel were disgust for myself and frustration at my inability to do anything about it. I would wrap myself in a protective blanket of sadness and insulate myself from feeling.
So now when I’m out for a run or lifting heavy stuff or pushing myself at a class my inner voice mostly complains about the hard work and uncomfortableness but there’s a steady, quiet voice that’s so grateful to be feeling again. Whether it’s simply the sun on my face or the wind whipping around my head, the burning sensation in my chest or the pride in my accomplishments, I’m just happy to be feeling it.
The ever lovely Jessica Blaine Smith sent this card my way a few weeks ago (thank you, Jess!) and it brought up a lot of thoughts and emotions for me. I know I post a lot on social media about this journey but privately it’s been difficult for me to acknowledge how hard I’ve been working or how tough things are. Change sucks, working out sucks (sometimes) and meal planning healthy meals week after week is rough. It gets easier, for sure, and the rewards are most definitely worth it but the day to day is not always sunshine and roses. Or cardio and kale. Thanks for reaching out, Jess. Your card made me take a few moments and give myself a pat on the back.
There is a photo in our spare bedroom of my mom and I in Mexico where I’m wearing this top. It’s probably four or five years ago. That was the last time I was able to wear this. Today feels pretty awesome.
I was going to hashtag this with #humblebrag but you know what, this brag is big and bold and not at all humble. This morning I did a BodyPump class, followed by a BodyAttack class and then I ran/walked at my best pace yet. I know, it’s horribly slow. I’m sure my running friends might not even call this a run, more like a shuffle. But I did it. I shaved almost a minute off my average pace. Did I want to go to the gym today? Nope. Did I want to go for a run after the sunset and all my motivation had set with it? Not in the least. But I feel amazing and awesome and so proud of myself.
Spending a good portion of my day waiting for pick ups as I listed most of my closet in a FB plus size clothing buy/sell group. I’ve been putting off buying anything new for a long time but hopefully this will help take the financial sting out of restocking my wardrobe.
My weight loss has been plateauing for a bit. I’ll be honest, it sucks. So we’re shaking things up by trying out Cross Fit (at our friend’s amazing gym) and I’ve been taking a hard look at my sleep (which is really crappy) and my stress levels (also super crappy). In a lot of ways overhauling our diet and exercise was a lot easier than putting myself first and making time for self care and proper sleep. Funny how that works, eh?
So there’s that. Two lofty, ambitious fitness goals that I’ve been working towards, dreaming about, visualizing almost every night. At the end of April I’ll be running 10k in Mississauga and over Thanksgiving I’ll be giving the Okanagan half marathon a go. If you are in either of these places at those times I’d love to see/hear you along the route or at the finish.
Lately I’ve been feeling like I’m in an exercise rut. Signing up for these races has been a great motivator to try something different and set a goal that’s not related to the scale. I’ve been following a very simple walk/run program and it’s so exciting to get through each week feeling stronger than the last. The numbers on the scale have been slow to move these past few weeks so it’s been nice to focus on something else.
A question I am often asked is how did you get started on losing weight and getting healthy? One of the first things we did was start walking. Every night after dinner instead of vegging out in front of the tv or heading back into the office Adrian and I would walk. At first we brought Sammy with us but it wasn’t long before we wanted to walk faster and further than his little legs could keep up with and we had to leave him at home. With the amazingly warm weather today (9C, what a gift but also wtf?) we debated going for a run or maybe a super long fast walk but in the end we settled for a leisurely walk around the park with our pup like we used to do. It brought back so many great memories for me about where I was when I started this journey and how much I’ve grown since then. And we’re pretty sure Sam had a good time too.
Not the best photo I’ve ever taken, but here is a pretty awesome NSV (non-scale victory, for you not in the weight loss world). Today my wedding ring fell off. Luckily I felt it and didn’t lose my ring but going to have to get it resized soon.
It took me months and months (maybe even years) to finally take the first step on this journey. The challenges that came with just putting one foot in front of the other towards my goals felt insurmountable. I thought just getting going, establishing good habits, was going to be the most difficult part. But honestly, the past few weeks have been the hardest. Many tears of have been shed. Mostly at the gym, sometimes at home, a lot of the time alone. The numbers on the scale aren’t falling like they used to. I still have the same struggles with self hatred. I went shopping for some new clothes and was the SAME F’ING SIZE. 55 pounds gone and I am still wearing the same size. I melted down in Addition-Elle and just wanted to escape. Run away. From everything.
I want to be honest and lay this out there so those of you who are in the same boat know that you are not alone. The steps towards health (physical and mental) can be simple but they are certainly not easy. Showing myself kindness and grace is the hardest thing I have ever done. It still seems impossible to think I will ever like myself fully.