Camilla's Journey Tracker

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Friday, 28 September 2012

1133 by 1242

It's 12.42pm.

I've just finished lunch. (12WBT Mexican Shepherds Pie + Veggies 300 cals)
I also ate breakfast this morning. (2 x Toast with Baked Beans 260 cals)
I ate my morning tea. (Container of Celery 28 cals )
I ate the slice my colleague gave me. (Yummy raspberry slice 275 cals (minimum))
I've just inhaled my afternoon tea too. (Raspberries on Greek Yoghurt 150 cals)
Oh and did I mention a muesli bar? (Natural Grains 120 cals)

That's 1133 calories consumed before 1pm.

Seriously, what the hell is going on with me? Even when I am hungry I normally have some self control. My only bonus is that I haven't hit the vending machines, but if they had pretzels when I went out there before I can guarantee I would have bought them.

Not a good day….


With everything that’s been going on, I’ve slipped back to old habits. No, eating has been okay, exercise has been okay but neither have been great.

I’ve been using every excuse under the sun.

It’s too cold.
It’s too hot.
It’s too early.
It’s too late.
I can’t be bothered.
I don’t have time.

Who gave the excuses permission to come back? Why am I resorting to old bad habits?


I’ve spent the better part of this year banishing excuses from my life, erasing the victim mentality that is so common these days and trying to build new and better habits. Have I seriously undone all this work in a matter of weeks?

Yep, I’m struggling. There’s no point hiding it or sugar coating it or giving it another name. With every post I write I feel focussed, back in control and like I’m on the verge of success again. Then by the time night falls it’s like it’s all forgotten.

I could blame this on having so-called friends accuse me of not being a friend, I could blame this on job uncertainties, I could blame this on budget constraints, hell I could blame this on the weather. Regardless of what is happening in my life, there is neither excuse nor reason for not looking after myself. Convincing me that there they’re valid is only deceiving myself.

This is the part of the post where I would normally promise to move the world and re-align the stars and change everything but quite frankly, I’m sick of not delivering on my promises. I will continue to work towards being able to be honest and committed but no more promises are to be made and broken.

If anyone else has gone through this and been successful, I would greatly appreciate your input….

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Riding the Wave of Uncertainty

I’m a self-admitted control freak. If I’m not in control, I’m out of control.
I’m a planner. I plan everything.
I’m a goal setter. I set goals for the immediate short term, the mid-term and long term.
I love surprises. Well, I love them even more when I know what they are without the other person suspecting I know.

At the moment I’m at an uncertain time in my life.

Job cuts are imminent under this government and we can already see the positions disappearing from government departments that were once thought of as safe houses. I know they are targeting analysts as the government is analyst heavy. I’m an analyst. I don’t know what my future holds or where my future will take me. I am not in control and I cannot control this.

What I can control is how I react to it. Every single one of us has choices in life that relate to how we react to certain events, incidents or anything really. Most people haven’t ever thought about it. They just jump in and do what they’ve always done without question. As an analyst, that’s not me. I tend not to stress about things that I have little or no control over unless it affects me personally, directly.

My job is personal, but it’s not the only job I have, nor are my skills so limited that I’d never be able to do anything different. The changes ahead aren’t necessarily bad as most presume. They say change is as good as a holiday. It might give me the push to pursue new and alternate dreams which I once thought were far away on the horizon.


It brings about a flurry of thoughts and emotions. A lot of ‘what ifs’ and ‘what nots’ float aimlessly through the air encouraging confusion and unsettling nerves. I can feel the general mood in the room has changed, there is nervous chatter and half fake smiles.


I choose to not get caught up in it. I’m still working away at my set task, not knowing if the task itself will be redundant before the day is finished. I choose to focus on the bigger things I’ve got going on. These bigger things include my weight loss journey, my goals and in general my life. Yes, a job is necessary to fund these journeys, but it doesn’t specify that it must be the current job I’m in right now. I am not jumping the gun and making plans to leave because I don’t know if that’s what will happen. In fact all I am going to do is ride this wave of uncertainty.

This is not the way I would have handled this scenario had it happened a year or so ago. This is not the way a lot of people are expecting me to handle it.

I’ve already been in touch to find out what my options are when it comes to mortgages, debts etc and I’m fine. I’m not losing my health, I’m not losing my house nor my car. All it will be is a change.

Notice how I keep repeating that? It’s because it’s what I believe and I need to keep reinforcing that so I don’t get swept up by it all.

No matter what it is you are facing in life, no matter the obstacle or the situation, you have a choice. You can choose how to react. Your reacting will in turn dictate how that choice affects you and whether  you make it into a big deal or not. Your reaction will also affect how those around you react to it. Emotions are contagious – you can influence others without realising it.

So next time you’re faced with change or adversity or anything at all, pause, think about how you’re going to react before you do. It’s amazing the difference it makes.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Veggie Gardens!!!!!!!!!!

After years of lusting for my very own thriving veggie patch the dream is now so close to becoming a reality that I can smell it!
Gardening is the one thing that can relax me and make me happy without any human interaction what-so-ever. There’s something about playing in the soil, getting all down and dirty with nature that’s so……… I can’t even think of the words to describe it. It’s heavenly. It makes me feel complete to know that what I am doing is creating new growing things in this world albeit only plants.
I love nurturing the seeds and celebrating when the seedlings finally break through the soil surface. Guiding the small green stalks and feeding them nutrients and water to enable them to bear fruit is just magical.
My dream has always been to live in a big house on a decent slice of land with a fruit orchard, a veggie patch that would see me fully self-sufficient when it came to fruit and vege. I’ve started with a few citrus trees and my first patch goes down this weekend.
I’ve decided to go against the traditional methods of growing veggies and further explore Square Foot Gardening. Square Foot Gardening works on a base principle that you should only grow what you require to minimise waste and maximise variety. It’s quite an interesting concept and I urge you to research it if you want to pursue your own veggie patch.
So I’ve bought my 1.2m x 1.2m raised timber garden bed kit from Bunnings and also a Crop Cage by the same dimensions to protect my babies from pests. I’ve got some soil at home but I will be picking up some organic compost etc to ensure that it’s of a high quality – did you know there’s actually a soil recipe for SFG?! Who would have known hey?
Does anyone out there have any experience with Square Foot Gardening? At this time of year in Central Queensland, what do you recommend I plant? I would love to hear as many experiences as possible so we can all learn from each other :D

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Swaussie!!! Swaussie!!! Swaussie!!! Oi! Oi! Oi!

Today is a very special day for me. It’s my 10 year anniversary since gaining Australian Citizenship. I currently hold dual citizenship and I’m so proud to be what I call a ‘Swaussie’ – More Aussie than Swedish, but both nationalities occupy my heart the same.
Anyone who has spoken to me will know that my accent is long gone and if anything I have a bit of an Aussie twang thanks to spending many years in regional Queensland where slang and colloquialism are more common than in our capital counterparts.
With my Swedish heritage, one would assume that I would be tall, slender with magical blue eyes and long blonde hair. After all it’s in my genes, right? In my family, I am the only one in this constant battle with my weight. My parents, brother and sister are all in healthy weight ranges. They don’t require strict regimes.  Sometimes there’s a pang of jealousy there but then I realise that I’d much rather be me than someone else.
I’m a by-product of multi-culturalism, I belong everywhere but I don’t really “feel” like I belong anywhere. I can talk to most people and very rarely do I not get along with someone. I have a wide circle of friends/acquaintances but how many would turn up in a crisis? That I’m not entirely sure. 
However, just as the numbers on the scales don’t define me, I also don’t define myself by the actions or lack of actions on behalf of others. In the last few years I always assumed that I needed others to complete me.  I am the only one who can complete me.
Since becoming my own best friend rather than my own best enemy, my body and my soul have taught me so much about myself. What I can and can’t tolerate, what I will and won’t tolerate and also what I’m looking for in life. No, I don’t have all the answers and no, I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up except that I want to be me whatever that entails.
Speaking of doing things for me, last night I submitted my request to reduce my hours at job #2. Admittedly only by 100 hours per year, but I shuffled hours so that I can get one whole weekend off per month. As much as I’d like to cut down further, it’s imperative that I continue to allow me to reach my financial goals in a more timely manner. I can’t wait till it takes effect and I can enjoy a weekend again – perhaps even visit some friends I’ve been neglecting.
So today is going to be very much a red flag day. I’m at the pub for lunch, Hogs Breath for dinner and I’m getting taken out to dinner again tomorrow night. Thank goodness I’ve got PT tonight – I’m sure Chris will make me work for it!!
So for all you rednecks out there – not all immigrants are bad, don’t paint them all with the same brush!

Monday, 24 September 2012

No Follow Through – New Chapter Required

So even after all my blog entries, my commitments, my confessions and my revelations, the scales still aren’t budging.
At this point I could start rattling off excuses. I have heaps. I’ve come to realise that I didn’t commit to my pre-season tasks. The last round almost overlapped to this one so there was really not much time in-between. I know this sounds like another excuse, but based on this I have decided that I will not be doing the next round of Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation. I don’t want to feel “rushed” going from Finale straight to the next round without time to reflect. In saying that, this is not my last round ever. I have considered my options and I will now probably be looking at every second round. Not only that, but the costs add up. I’m a finale addict, which means if I sign up for the round, I’ll also do the finale. I have almost spent more money on finales this year than I have on my Hawaii trip. Don’t get me wrong, they’re a lot of fun and I love doing the round and I love going to group workout etc. but I can’t keep pushing through at this pace. I am becoming someone who is feeling very overwhelmed, like I’m not achieving and quite frankly, I’m not.
I have decided that although I won’t be doing the round, I will still be going through and doing pre-season tasks (based on this round) and I will still be sticking to a calorie controlled food intake (1200 calories per day) and I will be setting fitness goals. I have enlisted a PT twice a week, and this will continue. As soon as I’d made this decision yesterday I felt more at ease.
I have also made a decision to reduce the hours of my second job. I will be placing a formal request to amend my contracts to give me one full weekend off per month. This will allow me to still maintain somewhat of social life, travel to see friends and family, and also work more towards my fitness goals.
So with all these decisions made and a weight off my shoulders, I had to decide what to do about the rest of this round. I didn’t want to waste the rest of it (although I feel I already have). I decided that the remaining round will make a difference in my life.
 I’ve decided my new chapter starts now. I’ve titled it “JFDI” – all you 12wbt-ers will know what that means. No more excuses, I’m just going to do the best I can with 120% of the right attitude and consistency.
I’ve already started. This morning I got up before the sun and I took a walk around the block. It was only 140 calories burnt, but I’m creating a new habit. With time I will increase the distance and up my speed to maximise my burn. For now I’m happy that I got up and I went. Even though today I’ve got both my day job and second job to complete. I’ve also packed my gym bag so that I can go and squeeze out 350 calories at the gym on the way home tonight.
No more stagnant weight. No more feeling sorry for myself. No more procrastination.
This is how it’s going to be. This is my life. This is my choice. I will be posting regular updates on my changes so I can read back through this journey in detail once I do manage to reach goal.
Have a lovely day!!

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Ready to explode?

Thanks for all your advice to my last blog post. You're all an integral part of my support system and without you, quite frankly, I'd be lost.

I've taken aboard the advice to cut down on my To Do List for today and actually spend some time relaxing and looking after me.

My revised list includes:
- Wash clothes/towels/linen                  - Clothes are done, towels in the machine and linen next
- Add 10 items to eBay                         - 6 Items added, 4 to go
- Clean bathroom                                   - Bathroom clean
- Clean kitchen                                      - Kitchen 80% clean
- Cookup                                               - I still have plenty of food in the freezer so only doing a soup

Last night I went to my PT session as I do every Friday, expecting to get slammed and work every muscle in my body, and as if on cue, that's exactly what happened. I've got to say that finding Chris as my PT has had a major positive effect on my training. Chris has plenty of experience, and she also knows that she can push me and what my limits are. Each week she's come up with something new, something daunting to push me just that little bit farther. I can now do burpees. I'm not a fan. I'll never be a fan but I can do them. I'm not great at them, my technique is still lacking, but I'm working on it.

So after some very encouraging words at the end of my session I thought I might give Spin a crack. After all, you can leave anytime right? So that way if it gets too much I'll just leave...

I had been told that Spin would get results. I was told that it wasn't as hard as other classes as you were sitting down.

Nothing prepared me for what was about to happen.

Our lovely instructor Sally introduced herself to me and helped me set up my spin bike. I was already nervous and seeing only two other people in the room I figured I wouldn't feel too bad if I left halfway through. After I was all strapped in and sitting on a seat that felt more like I was inflicting torture on myself we were ready to go.

At first I thought that it wasn't too bad apart from the aparent discomfort and pain in my... well, you know.... ummm "seat". After what felt like 45 minutes I figured the class must be ready to wind up shortly. I checked my HRM - we were only 8 minutes in!! I set myself a goal of getting to 15 minutes and then I would allow myself to leave. Nearing 14 minutes I started trying to loosen my feet so I could make a quick exit and not be talked into staying. My feet weren't budging. They felt like they were locked in. I couldn't move them. I had no choice but to keep going. I could feel tears welling up in my eyes as I sat there in pain thinking this is what hell feels like. I constantly wiped my face so it looked like sweat as I tried to swallow my emotions and just ride this out. When the 45 minutes was finally up and we were done, I made it as far as the change rooms before I collapsed onto a bench. I sat there for 10 minutes calming down, letting my jelly legs settle before I left the gym.

If I hadn't been "locked in" I would have left early. I wouldn't have burnt over 800 calories in spin and over 1200 calories for the day. When asked if I'd be back, I immediately came up with excuses. On the way home I decided that I would be back. This is what I need. I need to ramp it up a gear. I also need a super padded gel seat for the bike!!!

Anyway, I've procrastinated long enough from my to do list, it's back to it!!

Friday, 21 September 2012

Ugly. Ugly. Ugg-ley.

Defn. A feeling of discontent and resentment aroused by and in conjunction with desire for the possessions or qualities of another.
I've been quiet on the home front for a few days. I haven't been intentionally ignoring you. I've been trying to work out how to put into words the emotions and feelings I'm riding at the moment. It's been an interesting and very draining time.
This week the green eyed monster has appeared in nearly all parts of my life. I'm struggling with simple every day concepts and even the small stuff seems like it's over-shadowing me. Everything is overwhelming and I feel I'm losing control in a big way. As I'm a self-confessed control freak, that alone makes me anxious and nervous.
**breathes into a brown paper bag**
So what am I jealous of? What is it that others have that I want?
I want to be fit. I want to be healthy. I want a great life filled with family and friends. I want veggie gardens. I want chooks. I want time off. I want my weekends back. I want to work less. I want to earn more. I want less debt. I want to be closer to my dreams.
I feel like throwing a tantrum to compete with a two year old!
I want! I WANT! I WANT IT NOW!!!
Oh yes, my patience isn't at full capacity either…
I'm grumpy. I'm irritable. I'm frustrated.
I haven't taken time out to look after myself. If I don't look after myself, how am I supposed to be the best version of me? This week I've found myself getting caught up in absolutely everything and on top of it being very draining, my iron levels aren't back on track yet so my fatigue and poor sleep isn't helping either. I was so focussed and then I let this happen.
I guess I'm human. I'm not perfect and that's okay. I need to know it's okay not to be perfect. I need just that one piece of wisdom to sink into my head so I can move on.
I need to stop comparing my life and my journey to that of others. Although we walk similar journeys, we all wear different shoes, take different routes and stop to smell different flowers. We are not the same. It'd be a pretty boring world if we were (unless of course the world is filled with many different versions of me in which case the world would be AWESOME).
So what am I going to do to change the path I'm on right now that obviously isn't the most beneficial nor productive for me.
I'm going back to the old adage - Fake it till you make it!
Back to basics. I will plan my Saturday to ensure that I get things done that are going to put me back in control. I am going to get things off that to do list which is haunting me.
So, let me take a moment to be completely honest. I'm hoping this will hold me accountable so I don't just "waste" my only day off (working 6 days a week can take its toll).
To Do List for Saturday 22nd September 2012
Washing (There's at least 3 loads needing to be done on top of bed linnen and towels)
Clean Bathroom Fully (that's a standard Saturday thing)
Clean Kitchen Fully (that's a standard Saturday thing)
Super Saturday Session - Burn 1000 calories (Gym Class at 8.15)
Plant out my herbs for my herb garden (well in seedling thingies)
Set my food plan and exercise plan for next week
Catch up on the mail
Add another 10 items to eBay to sell
Weed the tilled veggie patch
Set out my square foot gardening locations
Set out a plan to finish my Diploma
Iron uniforms
Set goals
Set up new inspiration board
Well I think that just about covers it. Nothing like a million things to do in limited time as I'm helping a friend sell raffle tickets for the Rural Firies at Bouldy from 3pm. Is this list possible? Am I setting myself up to fail?
If there are any of you out there who work on average 55 - 65 hours a week over 6 days, how do you plan your week? How do you ensure you get everything done and you stay on top of things? How do you learn to keep it all in control so you don't lose your only day off?
I've got friends who care for me and are concerned with the hours I do but to achieve my financial goals, these hours can't change right now. Look forward to hearing all of your tips and advice to keep me sane and on track.

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Faith, Belief and .... Cheese?

Today I've felt the need to write but I've been at loss as to what to write about.
I asked a dear friend what they may recommend and I was advised: faith, belief …. Or cheese.
I love cheese. My all time favourite is Jarlsberg and I could sit and eat nothing else. In fact, it's one of those items that I have so little control over that I only ever buy it by the slice from the deli as a treat. As much as I'm a food addict with a weight problem, an entire post on cheese may not be the message I want to get across. Instead I'm going to focus on the power of faith and on the power of belief.
I believe in many things. I believe in Karma. I believe in early mornings and early nights. I believe that whatever you put out to the universe, you get returned. I believe that you treat others the way you'd like to be treated. I used to only believe in parts of myself - never my whole self.
I always believed that I could do my job or any job I applied for. If I set a materialistic goal, I believed I could reach it and normally did. Nothing seemed to hard or too far out of reach. Yes, I had to work hard but it was all achievable.
I have faith. I put my faith in God. I put my faith in the universe. I have faith that when I commit to something with my whole self, my body, my mind and my soul that I will achieve. So even with this faith, why did I also have doubt?
I found it easy to have faith in beliefs that were greater than myself. Up until recently I have only ever felt that I could control parts of my life that didn't include my health/body/esteem. I'm not sure where that came from, or how it never changed, but for the most part of my life that's how I've been. I've had comments mentioned to me that I am so confident in my work life and my volunteer work, why doesn't that transfer onto myself?
Quite honestly? I don't know. I have no idea.
When I used to look in the mirror I saw this great big lump of lard with way too much gum showing through the smile and a forehead that continued forever. I used to be disgusted at the very sight. I went to extremes to avoid my reflection, covering up mirrors etc in the places I lived to minimise the feelings that always followed.
For the second round this year, I focussed greatly on letting my mind catch up to where my body was at on my journey. I think they're not too far apart now and I know when I look in the mirror I see someone who closely resembles me. I don't see the disgusting image I'd seen for so long. It's almost a bit of a relief for the first microsecond when I look and realise that I'm not a lump anymore.
I still pick faults with my image and there are still many changes to complete on my forever changing 'to do' list.
One key for me to have come so far was a session I had with Emazon earlier in the year - at the end of round 1 to be exact. Now you might be wondering why this is surfacing again? Well Emazon is rumoured to be visiting Rockhampton in December. This is an event that I can't afford to miss. Please go and check out her website to see what you're missing out on - if you ever get the chance to go see her - DO IT! I command you - order you even!
Since I have learnt to become friends with myself again and tolerate my imperfections, I have been able to establish belief in myself again. I now believe that anything in my life is possible. I am no longer restricted to my own preconceived and warped ideas. I have faith in my own strength, faith in this journey I'm on and faith that I am doing the right thing.
If I had to write a recipe to a successful life, then two key ingredients would definitely have to be belief and faith. If you don't believe in yourself and you don't have faith in your own actions and your own self, then how can you honestly and fully open up and love others and let them love you?
It's a harsh statement, but although our family loves us unconditionally, when you are in a moment of self-loate and self-disgust, do you really feel it? Is it something that crops to mind? I know it never did for me. I had friends tell me they loved me for who I am - I didn't believe them. I mean, how could they? I knew what I was like and I didn't like it so how could they? Thoughts like these were like needles in a voodoo doll, their sharp pain forever reminding me without seeing the physical damage that was left.
I am so glad to have moved beyond this. I wish there was a magic pill that I could give you to skip this phase but in hindsight I think it's what will make your soul stronger and able to help others dealing with such pain. It was necessary for me to go through this pain, to feel the hurt and see the damage - this is what's made me stronger now. It's what's given me the courage to post some of the posts that you read here on my blog.
This is all raw honesty. I don't fluff things up. I'm not hiding things. I call a spade a spade. There's no point in beating around the bush. Obesity is a problem that's strangling our nation. We need to take a hold, we need to join together with our belief and our faith so that we (and our children - and children's children (I've always wanted to say that!!)) can live long, happy and healthy lives.

Monday, 17 September 2012

Camilla's Web

Okay, so this is a follow on from last week's post "Obese by Choice?".
That post was thrilling to write and certainly brought out a lot of raw emotion. Not just in me, but in a lot of you as well.
Since then I've done a lot of thinking on the topic. I don't think I quite covered the entire message I wanted to portray.
I still stand by my statement that I didn't choose to become obese. It was a by-product from events and actions that occurred in my life, and although different people may have handled the situations differently, this is my story and my journey and I think that sometimes we don’t have the full control of life that we'd like.
Here's where put it all on the line.
I didn't choose to become obese but it was my choice to remain obese.
Up until the middle of last year, I was obese and wanted to remain obese. It wasn't a conscious decision, it was a subconscious decision to protect me from failed relationships. I have always had a good job, great friends and a pretty good life in general. The one part missing from my life was that special someone.
I've been on a lot of blind dates, internet dating dates and so forth. I've met some very interesting characters and if there was no such thing as defamation of character I could write several blog posts just on that. Whenever one of the dates failed, or if the dates progressed further and then the relationship failed, I always had my weight as my 'backup excuse'. It was never really my fault. I never took ownership of anything. I never assumed it was the other person's fault. The fact it takes two to tango didn't even enter into my negative justifications.
Being obese also meant that I had an excuse not to do things. I didn't need to eat healthy because I was already a lost cause. I would go through drive-throughs and order family meals justifying to the girl taking my money that my family was at home. Family? Seriously? I couldn't manage to hold a relationship together but I had a 'family to feed'? A family of negative thoughts perhaps. The more I lied, the easier it became. I then started lying to those around me. If someone invited me out, I would always say that I had prior engagements that couldn't be broken. I used to make up elaborate stories about my social life.
In effect I'd created 'Camilla's Web'.
Nobody got offended when I declined their invitations to sit at home and gorge myself on whatever money could buy me. Nobody ever knew the real reason I declined and nobody ever suspected a thing.
Then last year I decided to go talk to someone. I was matched up with a psychologist (I think - I never know the difference between a psychologist and psychiatrist) - I booked 6 appointments with her. I only ever had 3. At the time I felt it was a complete waste of time. I was sitting talking to someone, who if anything, was extremely underweight. The person had no idea what I'd been through and quite frankly I used to feel like I'd gotten nothing out of our visits. I stopped going.
The only thing she had managed to point out to me was that the more I wove my web, the more intricate it would become and the harder it would be for me to become my true self. What a load of babble! What did she know! Those pieces of paper on the wall mean nothing! I didn't want anyone to come in to my life that much! I just wanted a partner who would be interested in setting up a property empire so I could quit work and start my own nursery and grow plants. I didn't really want them to know me, what would be the point? I was fat, frumpy and quite frankly didn't care.
So I kept ordering 2 pizzas for "the family" and icecream was never bought in amounts less than several litres. A new chocolate was never on the market for more than a day or two without me trying it, and not just trying one, but several. In hindsight, I'm amazed at how much I could consume without feeling sick. I could eat enough to feed a family of four every day without blinking an eyelid.
So what changed? I've tried to figure this out many times. Towards the end of last year the penny dropped. It all made sense. I don't know how and I don't know why but it did. So I started shifting my mindset, I wanted to become a better person and I did. I am.
You can't undo your past actions. You can change your future. You have a choice. It's a very daunting choice and it's nearly always easier to just keep doing what you're doing for fear of the unknown.
My journey hasn't been easy, it's been a lot of hard work, a lot of sweat and a lot of tears but the rewards are worth it. You are worth it. Stop procrastinating. Stop delaying your dreams. If you're reading this blog it's because you're interested in change. Stop holding yourself back. You can do this.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Major Collision Avoided

It's nearly 10am. That's close to morning tea time. I'm not very organised today. Broke the budget for this week already. I'm sipping on my long black, my treat for the day. My tummy speaks up with a grumble. I'm getting hungry. Yes, I actually know what that feels like these days. My lunchbox holds Thai pumpkin soup for lunch and Jalna greek yoghurt for a snack. I check my drawer at work, the one where I keep my 'emergency stash' because if I don't, then the vending machine's serenade becomes irresistible. I have committed to losing another 15kg this round. The vending machine won't support that. Self talk is amazing. There's nothing useful in this post. I just feel better having said it out loud. I don't need a treat. I have my coffee. I don’t need the vending machine just because it's 10am. **Lightbulb Moment** Hang on, I check the second drawer, a green apple. Yep, that will do the trick. Disaster averted. Everyone, back to your post, we avoided a major collision this time. Who knows when the next attack will strike. Our defence is getting better by the day.
Be strong. Stay committed. Remain focussed.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Obese by Choice?

What a loaded question! I know when I read that question I am infuriated and filled with rage.
Hearing comments like "It's your choice" and "Just cause it's there doesn't mean you have to eat it" drives me insane.
I didn't get fat overnight. I didn't get fat by a magical spell. I know that I got fat by eating. I didn't intentionally set out to eat crap and put on weight. I didn't set myself a goal to become obese by the time I was 30. It wasn't on my bucket list and never did it make my "to do list".
I think that unless you've been in similar shoes and walked a similar journey you don't understand obesity.
There is a reason I consumed the food. I'm still uncovering the reason behind this, it's not clear to me yet, but day by day something new comes to light.
When I look at obesity, in relation to myself, and this is only my opinion, I compare myself to an alcoholic, or a drug addict.
I have an addiction to food. For a lot of years I didn't know how hunger felt, or how to tell when I was full. I could go days without eating at all and then binge on whatever I could get my hands on.
Just like an alcoholic struggles around alcohol, a drug addict around drugs, I struggle with food.
I choose to beat obesity.
I know this is my weakness. I keep my house free of junk for that reason. I know in time I will permit it back in but at the moment the temptation is too great and the risk is something I can't handle. With time an alcoholic's willpower to resist the urge to consume alcohol becomes bearable, manageable, so will my addiction with food.
For those of you who haven't been obese, you will have no idea what I'm talking about. I have had those close to me tell me they understand, only in the next breath to question it. I don't blame them, they just don't know.
If there is junk food in my house, I will find it and I will eat it - rephrase that, I will in most instances inhale it and then regret it and punish myself. It's not a nice way of putting it, but I don't have the self control I need yet. I don't know how to explain this rollercoaster to those who haven't been there. I hope that some of you reading this are realising how different I see things. I know other people in similar situations feel the same.
I can't buy a block of chocolate or a pack of tim tams and stop at one. I can't buy icecream and only have a scoop or two. I eat it all. I leave no evidence. If needed, I will drive to a public bin to dispose of the rubbish so that I'm not caught out.
To be honest, I'm not that bad anymore. I now just don't buy junk. If I do, I buy it in small portions so there are no left overs. I don’t hide my rubbish anymore because I realise that nobody is going through my bins. It's taken nearly 12 months for me to realise this though.
So if your loved one, your friend or your colleague tells you that they are losing weight, don't just assume they're vain - there could be more to their journey than you will ever know. If someone is struggling with an addiction, you don't put the item the person is addicted to in front of them. You support them, talk to them, stick by them and help them through the lows and celebrate the highs with them.
This post isn't aimed at anyone. This is just a post for me to get this off my chest. This post, or something similar, has been playing on my mind for a while. I wasn't sure how to word it. I'm still not sure I've worded it right. No doubt I'll offend someone so I apologise in advance.
This is just my thoughts written down, there is no research except of that into my own life and my own experiences.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Grassy Knees and Sunbleached Tatts

Although Mish was out of action due to the recovery of surgery after tearing her hamstring completely off the bone, she certainly had a decent workout for us.
As pre-workout entertainment we watched the Fitness Challenge take place. This isn't your normal fitness challenge. These aren't your normal people. The people who took part are nothing short of amazing athletes. My goal is to one day be up on that stage completing this workout and not coming last.

Fitness Challenge

Squats (full depth - butt in line or lower than knee crease level) x 20

Burpees (chest to the ground, jump & clap over head) x 10

Squats x 15

Push ups (on toes, chest to the ground, no snaking up) x 20

Squats x 10

Sit ups (full sit ups, knees bent, elbows to knees) x 20

Squats x 10

Plyometric lunges (knee must touch the ground) x 40 (20 each leg)

Squats x 10

For the incredible winners of the heats who went through to the final - they then had to do the following:

Burpees (chest to the ground, hand release, jump & clap over head) x 10

Hand release push ups x 20

Butterfly sit ups (cross fit situps) x 10

Squats (full depth) x 20

Mountain climbers (foot must be within 5cm of your hand on each 'climb') x 30 (15 each leg)

Squats (full depth) x 20

Butterfly sit ups x 10

Hand release push ups x 10

Burpees x 10

**Thanks to the amazing Dee for the above quoted information!

Seriously, just watching these girls made me breakout in a sweat. I can only do a handful of pushups on my toes (okay to be honest, probably only about 3) and burpees - ha ha ha - are you kidding me? I can't do any of those… yet. Oh and whilst we're at it - a butterfly sit up? Well nobody will be able to dispute that it's not a challenge.
So let's move on to the main morning event.

The weather was warm, the skies were blue and the sun was out. That's where the serenity ended as the masses piled into the 'workout area'. This was only my second group workout and this time I wasn't anxious and scared, I was more nervous whether I'd be able to complete it all. I'd come a long way since I started but I was nowhere near where I wanted to finish.
As we all stood there excited and nervous over what was to come, we all painted the slogan 'Life is a Gift' on our arms in honour of a fellow Perth Crew Member who had lost a loved one. Funny how I didn't even consider that even though the paint washed off, the tan I got around it didn't...

The atmosphere was amazing. Unless you've been to one of these fantastic events, you won't understand what the atmosphere is like. It's like buzzing crowd, all excited and happy just exuding positivity and it's contagious - there's no getting out on the wrong side of the bed at these events.
The event itself included running, aerobics and also some games. We had a planking game where there was a group of 15-25 people who planked in a circle whilst members took turns in running around the outside of people's legs- the other game was one where you knelt in two rows, facing your partner, hands up in the air against each others hands whilst people took turns in making their way through the 'tunnel'. Without even thinking that I was wearing a cocktail dress that night I crawled through, my knees were sore, grass stained but I got through. The only other alternative was to walk through on all fours - I'm so not fit enough to do that and my bum isn't small enough to fit underneath when I tried. So grass stained knees were the only way. As hilarious as it was, I'm still feeling sore knees today from the event but the grass stains are gone.
In the hour workout I burnt over 800 calories. This is the best burn I've had for an hour to date. Quickly looking at my watch I realise that it's nearly time to start getting ready for the party. Party will be the next blog entry.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

3 Months = 12 Weeks = 84 Days

Finale was here already.
3 months had passed. 12 weeks. 84 days.
Well, thereabouts anyway, since last finale. The finale where I'd gotten up on stage in my glory to accept my award for blogger of the round. This finale was very different. With no Top 20 letter in my possession, this trip came with less anxiety and more anticipation of actually enjoying what was ahead. I looked forward to not stressing and just taking things as they came. It had been my resolution since last time.
This round wasn't a weightloss round for me. In fact I ended the round a few kilograms heavier than I started. This was my mindset round. My head caught up to my body, I befriended myself and I learnt to care and nurture my soul, my body and my mind. I learnt that number one in my life is me. This wasn't an easy lesson to learn, but it was quiet necessary. I learnt to read my own body signals, to listen to my body and soul when it needed care but most of all for my mind to allow my eyes to see the changes in my body.

With no weightloss to report, I didn't feel like I 'deserved' this trip. I'd had a few judgmental remarks thrown in my direction during the round from those who (obviously) didn't know any better or what part of my journey I was taking. I was hesitant even after I'd spent a small fortune on the weekend. A sense of worthlessness washed over me in the days leading up to my flight due to an array of discussions and comments that I was and wasn't partaking in. I'd had enough. I wasn't going. The decision was made.
Then that one strong voice, the pillar of unquestionable support, provided the strength I needed to continue on this journey. I was reminded that "Life is like a rollercoaster. It has its ups and downs. It's your choice to scream or enjoy the ride." So now I was going. Again.
I boarded my flight without the feeling of claustrophobia this time. The walls weren't swallowing me up. Perhaps facing my fear in Hawaii had made a difference. Short flights from Rocky to Brisbane never worried me, but the longer flights used to send elephants in to do Zumba in my belly. This time, they were barely fairies doing ballet.
Once I arrived in Perth, I started walking towards the JetStar check in. That's where the Shrinkers were meeting. With each step, I felt the excitement building and emotions were on a high. As they came into view a huge sense of relief and gratitude and happiness engulfed me. These girls have been the supporting blocks I've needed through this journey. Without them, I wouldn't be where I am. Unknowingly, to an extent, they've probably saved my life.
So the weekend begins, stay tuned to hear about the workout and ofcourse, the big event itself...

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Planning, Programming, Preparing and Perth : Choose Your Attitude

I figured some alliteration was in order to spark things up a bit. This week hasn't been my best to date but it's also been far from my worst. I have a few hurdles in front of me this week and I haven't prepared for it although it's been visible on the horizon for quite some time.
So what do you do when you're faced with an obstacle? You have two choices. There are only two choices. You either choose to overcome it or you choose to quit. The very first choice I make every morning is to be happy. I don't always wake up with a smile beaming from ear to ear and jumping for joy and wanting to spread the infectious mood. Nope, I am human, I wake up groggy with hair that would challenge Effie from Acropolis Now. Sometimes I wake up grumpy and on these days it's advisable only to approach me after I've had my morning caffeine hit.
"Fake it till you make it" - How many times have I heard this in the last eight or so months? More times than I can count!! At first I thought it was some stupid saying that people said to make themselves appear like they were "there". These days, I say it more than anyone I know. It's so true. If you put a smile on even though you're feeling grumpy and down, you'll find that smile will actually make you happier, make your day better and in turn you'll get into a better mood. I'm a firm believe in the fact that the Universe gives you what you put out. Sort of like karma. What goes around, comes around. If you're happy, then you attract happy people, you experience happy things and it becomes a recurring cycle.
The same can also happen with negativity, and once you're in that cycle, it's very hard to break it and it must be a conscious decision for you to do so. Most people don't just wake up one morning being happy after years of unhappiness. It's your life, you're driving it so put your hands on the steering wheel and decide where you want to go.
This is where I'm at. I've decided I'm a happy person, and now I am. I've decided to take charge of my own life, so my hands are clasped on the steering wheel of the vehicle taking me on the journey of life. My body is my vehicle. It needs to be cared for, maintained and loved. Yes I sound like I'm drunk and speaking jibberish, but if you are already happy, you know what I'm saying is true and if you're not quite there yet, don't give up.
A very wise group of ladies have supported me unconditionally through my journey, and although we have met, most of this support has been electronically through the internet or through text messages. It's amazing how easy it is to relate to people online these days. How much you start to depend on others for your own well being. I've learnt that I've been depending a little too much so I've taken a step back. That doesn't mean I don't appreciate them, it doesn't mean I've given up, it just means that my path had to take a different turn for a little while.
Anyway, back to the wise group - they have taught me about the power of self talk and positive affirmations. Everything from words on the mirror, sticky notes on the wall or even a documented manifesto. Having it all written down and reading/saying them regularly has helped me believe them. Although I still want to improve myself, I am far from where I was and I now know anything is possible.
This round, I haven't been as prepared as I thought. I haven't been planning out my weeks and this means I've slipped up on more than one occasion. That was my choice. I knew what needed doing. When I was in Hawaii, a saying was shared with me that I now hold dear:-
"Don't be upset by the results you didn't get because of the work you didn't do"
How true is that? Time to change that around. Meals are now planned, I pick up the groceries this afternoon to cook up tonight. I have my dress sorted for Perth, just need to make sure my shoes and clutch match. Finally I'm getting on top of it all. I'm back in control, the vehicle is no longer in neutral, we're changing up the gears.
Have a great Tuesday everyone!

Monday, 3 September 2012

Missing: Weekend Warrior

Busy. Busy. Busy.
These are the only words to describe my weekend.
Although I didn't have a real blowout foodwise, I did enjoy a few social beverages and a slice of some super awesome crocodile cake. No doubt without some serious thought and action my consequence will be visible on my dear old scales come Wednesday morning.
I naturally assumed when I picked up two Saturday shifts that the fact I would be working several weeks straight (without a day off) this would be beneficial to my weightloss. I hadn't planned, nor catered for the hunger that comes with exhaustion. It's not a hunger to eat food to satisfy your body's fuel requirements, it's more like a hunger for food to keep you awake. So the cravings weren't for wilted spinach and roast tomatoes, no it was all for high sugar, high fat content type foods. Also, a lack of preparation by having no stand-by meals in the freezer meant that I leant on some not so healthy options on several occasions.
Today I smash that excuse. This is not going to be a recurring excuse that I fall back to evertime things aren't 'normal'. I have gone through the 12wbt recipe index to print out some freezeable staples that I will cook up and freeze so in the future I can get my 'take-away' of 'fast food' directly from the freezer. Pre-cooked, pre-calcualated and certainly tastier than the alternatives I've been succumbing to.
Exercise was non-existant. Well deliberate exercise was non-existant after Friday night. I should be more careful with how I word it. The only exercise conducted was the exercise throughout my shift at Bunnings. I didn't focus on it, I didn't make it a priority - nothing. This won't be a problem going forth though as I get my Saturdays back now. My little stint of being a workaholic has now reduced back down to normal levels.
Tomorrow night I have my next blood donation (plasma) so we'll see how my iron levels are going. With strawberries for morning tea, roast beef salad for lunch, and spinach paneer for dinner on top of my standard iron supplements I'm hoping I'll be able to report and increase in my iron levels. If they're still down, I think the next step will be for full bloods and a full analysis since my weight loss.
This week is also planned to be very full on between donating blood, changing my hair, getting a tan and ofcourse the BIG Perth trip. For those of you who are 'facebook fans' you'll see my dress options there. So far we're going with the red, off-the-shoulder hugging dress. Shoes, bag and bling still to be arranged. If anyone has any suggestions, please let me now!! Enjoy your manic Monday!!