The Cost of Defiling Your Body

I needed to write this when the moment was here, present, real and oh-so uncomfortable.

Yesterday marked the 12 year anniversary of the passing of my stepdad. Len (or Lenny as he was known to close friends) raised me with my mom from the time I was five. He essentially helped me become the person I am today. My humour, humble roots and compassion came from him. His work ethic, love of learning and exploring are all traits that I am proud to have adopted.

Like every year that has passed, we planned his favourite dinner and dessert – pasta with meat sauce and my mom’s legendary homemade dark chocolate cake with white icing.

I was sad though. More than other years. And I while I think of him every day and remind him that he is missed, yesterday was super tough. I finally had to crawl into bed around noon as the feelings were overwhelming.  I cried. A lot. And drifted in and out of consciousness. I didn’t think too much; I just felt the feelings. I finally got my ass out of bed two hours later to make my homemade white icing that would lay a top the cake for all of us to enjoy later in the evening.

And then, I started searching for comfort. I licked the bowl. And the quick spiral downhill started. I licked and licked and licked until there was nothing left. What’s a little sugar going to do?….

Dinnertime came. I decided to veer off the typical path of white pasta and jarred sauce. I made whole wheat spaghetti and made my sauce from scratch. I had a regular portion and then, the old familiar red-wine induced slurred speech, blurred vision and congestion reared themselves. But I didn’t stop there. I finished my third glass and then, as I walked into the kitchen to clear my plate, I allowed myself this… (yes, a few white shells of pasta. I inhaled quickly so that I would think back later to even wonder if it had taken place).

As my mom cut the cake, and I looked at the picture of Len, I was my former self. In that moment, I was the overweight me. Not taking any notice of what I was eating, drinking or feeling. The fact that I recognized this should have been enough. But it wasn’t. I needed numbing and this was it. More wine and my fourth piece of cake, I was done. Barely able to walk upstairs, I laid down in my son’s bed and the guilt and regret started. And not to mention the wicked room-spins.

cake

I was sick. Very sick. The excruciating sugar pains started. My stomach in knots at 1am,  I started having a panic attack. Now for those of you who have never experience the wonder that is the panic attack, let me describe this to you. Imagine the room you are in going completely dark, and all you hear and feel is the overly rampant beat of your heart. You sweat, shake and in no possible way, are able to control your breath. I am a master at controlling my breath. This is what solely gets me through my 5k runs, my workouts and any stressful situation. But during a panic attack, there is no hope.

I focused, I tried, and all I could do was surrender the moment. It was awful. And there were moments I actually thought I was having a heart attack.

So, how do I feel this morning?

After spending the better part of an hour in the washroom (this is what happens to my body when foreign ingredients are consumed) and missing my Monday morning gym appointment, I am down at the lake reflecting on how absolutely terrible the last 14 hours have been.

All for some comfort in wine and cake.

What’s the lesson from today? Nothing really. This isn’t something you’ll read and think about before indulging because really, you have to live through these shit moments yourself; you need to realize the journey you’re on is worth so much more than the taste of chocolate cake, the comfort in the feeling of the past and a loved one whom you have lost. I needed to go through this. And because I have and I am present in what it felt like, I wont do it again. That’s the old me.

Happy hangover!

Axo

All I want is Homemade Mac’n Cheese

It’s a rainy, dismal day.  I have been awake since 4, kids up at 6:15, and with the stink of worm and fall in the air (not a great combination), all I want is a big ol’ bowl of homemade mac’n cheese (with white pasta, tons of salt, parm and old cheddar cheese) and sit on the couch and do absolutely nothing.

rainFor those of you who don’t know, my secret past addiction was white pasta.  Some of us who are fighting daily to make the best nutritional choices, move our bodies and battle with the voices in our heads may turn to fast food, chocolate, bags of candy, boxes of cookies, pizza, wings, and the like.  Me?  I could eat white pasta non-stop.  While gone are the University days of white Fettuccine Alfredo, chilling on the second-hand couches and watching COPS and America’s Most Wanted, I still find complete comfort in this food.  And a day like today brings back that need for comfort.

How am I dealing with this – well I arranged my day to workout later in the afternoon, however, my workout buddies (both) fell through.  Instant downer.  Pasta is looking really good right now!  There is no food in the house so thinking about what to eat that will fuel instead of comfort is difficult.  Opportunity knocks.  Pasta is looking super good right now!  My family decided to go to an outdoor event leaving me alone in the house.  I can sneak in an entire pot of pasta and NO ONE would know. The stars are aligned!  There is a God!  Pasta is not only looking good right now, but I can almost taste it.

What did I do, you ask?

I prepared this….

lunch

I am getting the hell out of the house because left to my own devices, I will be waist deep in pasta and cheese and that is just a recipe for disaster…. I am heading to the gym on my own for a full body workout.  I have the time so why not?

How do I really get through these oh-so-tough moments though?  I think, and really sit and think, before I automatically act now.  I actually picture myself, without even being present in my body, tuning everything out and inhaling cups and cups of the white crap.  For the mere seconds it would take me to eat a dinner plate of it, I fast forward to what happens afterwards.  Those few seconds of feeling nothing are quickly exchanged for heartburn, bloating, nausea, and just wanting to sleep!  And don’t get me started on the guilt.  Really, why would I want that when I can enjoy peppers, sockey salmon and green olives that leave me vital, energized and ready to move my body?

This is the journey.  Needing to be present in your mind and body and recognizing when old habits and behaviours show their little, manipulative faces! Push through.  Tell yourself you deserve more.  And when I, at least, feel like the time and environment are right, that I actually want that white pasta with cheese, I’ll have it.  But I can guarantee it would never be on a day I’m on my A game; it would never be after a workout, or talking with a client about what their goals and aspirations are.  It would only be when I associate food with comfort.  And I am happy to say, I am ALMOST passed that!

Axo

The Challenge, My First Fitness Class, New Clients, Podcast Interview and More

What a whirlwind last week was for me.

After posting our 90-Day Challenge picture, I kinda feel like I went into a bit of a depression – mentally and emotional (and spiritually).  I don’t go through ups and down often with my emotions, but last week was tough.

How did that translate into results?  Well, I was up two pounds, but did get in all my workouts and ate well.  So why the gain? This is a perfect example of how emotions play such a huge role on your weight loss journey.  You could be “on track” (I hate that phrase) or “doing good” (which I despise – just chuck those sentences out of your vernacular) – how about all in line with your daily and weekly promises to yourself and the body finds a way to go into fight or flight and it starts to hold on.

I am super stressed I’m not working.  I have never NOT worked.  Have always had my own money to get by, pay the bills and enjoy a Starbucks when I wanted.  I have drastically adjusted my lifestyle in the last year, by almost 75%.  I was making only a quarter of what I was used to and seemed to be just getting by.  Now to have nothing – it’s tough.  And it is major life events like the one I am in right now, that easily can suck out our energy… but this is how I’m handling it.

A close friend of mine recently reminded me “Focus on all the good you have right now, and it is a lot.  You have a lot to be thankful for.”   So I shifted my thoughts quickly and snapped myself out of the slipping slope I felt I was going down.

I have been given an opportunity to welcome new things into my life that I feel otherwise, I may not have been able to because this is the time I now need them – and some AT NO COST!

1.  A three month FREE membership at GoodLife to workout whenever I want and attend classes wherever I want all across Canada!

2.  Six LifeClasses that a friend of mine is offering.  As a new course, she has extended the offer to me and my friends FREE – an almost $400 value!  Honestly!

3.  Time.  I have been given the gift of time.  Not a lot of people can say they get that (ever!).  So time to focus on my workouts, time to write, time to clean my house, time to look for work.  I have time now!

4.  Opportunity to Share my story- with the blog and my connecting with others, I am getting my story out there.  I would like to thank Sam from Tips of the Scale (www.tipsofthescale.com) for finding my story, seeing potential in sharing, and interviewing me for his podcast.  Airs Friday September 27th.  I love meeting new and like-minded people.

5. Opportunity to Train – while looking for space to rent to bring on some clients, Senei Jonathan Kenney of CMAC in Oakville (http://www.gojubudo.com) offered an opportunity to come in to lead a fitness class.  I was SOOOO nervous, but the energy in the room was amazing and the group was nice and sweaty afterwards.  While it is so like me to wait and anticipate next steps, I don’t even care! I am so grateful for the chance Sensei passed on to me, the moment in itself was amazing.

My Dojo Class!

My Dojo Class!

It is amazing that although things are really tough right now, opportunity and the good things in my life are showing up to remind me that I will get through.

I look forward to the continued success of the Challenge, meeting new clients next week to get them started on their own journeys, job search (although dismal right now!) and continuing to work on me.  That 199 image on the scale is my super-goal this month!!

Keep Smiling

Axo

The 90 Day Challenge – Our Group!

I have never done a weight loss challenge… ever.  I tried that DietBet thing once, but was not convinced it was legit.  So, here we are.  I have joined a group of 19 other women led by my good friend, Lillian (a transformation story all in herself) and her business Hamilton Mompreneurs (www.hamiltonmompreneurs.com).  Sponsored by GoodLife Fitness and Inspire Fitness, the 90 Day Weight Loss challenge, Fit For Me 2013is one I am so happy to be a part of and supporting.

I am in the challenge, however, not officially in the pool to win.  I am doing this only for me, but know the support of those women in the group will be a great motivator to move on.  I am at a major precipice in my life right now.  Spending way too much time at home as I’m not working, trying to save every penny I have to my name, I can feel myself slowly getting into a rut.  It’s amazing how things happen just when you need them.  This is what I need to focus on and I am certain great things are on the horizon.

Our amazing group of challengers!

Our amazing group of challengers!

I had the privilege of weighing and measuring all these wonderful ladies last night (helping Lil with the admin of the event and as a trainer who has done this before have the qualifications to back the job up!).  And I have to say, we are so damn hard on ourselves.  The different bodies and personalities in front of me was overwhelming; I know these women are not defined by the numbers we shared.  I only hope they soon realize the same.  My scale hasn’t moved in a real long time, but I can say looking at myself in this group shot only makes me proud of how far I have come.  I look and feel so much happier than I was and it will be this and the great successes of our next 90 days that will push me through.

We received a great number of resources last night including a scheduler, which I have also believed in.  Schedule your week out so there are NO EXCUSES!!  My shopping done and my GoodLife membership in hand, nothing but ME can hold me back.  And we all know that just wont happen.

Happy following!  Weekly updates will be posted.

Axo

Deserving

I have been undercover lately as I have been going through a little bit of a struggle, much like a few of my close friends right now, with life.  While that may sound ominous, to answer the question of a dear pal of mine, “Yes, everyone’s life IS this complicated.”

Where is the struggle?  I have asked a few of my gal-pals, my weight-loss, transformational warriors a question of deserving.  Do they feel or did they need to first feel deserving of the life they are creating for themselves.  I have grappled with this notion for over a year now since starting the process in Personal Trainer certification and most recently stuck at a real-life fork in the road of ‘what next’?

images

This question may rear its ugly head when we are faced with a feeling of emptiness and possibly loneliness.  Am I deserving of love, happiness, joy and empathy in my marriage?  Am I deserving of friendship, enjoyment and acceptance in my social life?  Am I deserving of advancement, accomplishment and contribution in my career?  How is it possible to progress if you think progression toward anything is something you don’t deserve or should ever experience?

I feel as though I don’t deserve this life I am daily fighting to create for myself, that is is not my path; it is not my story. I am not the fit, buff, beautiful 20-something trainer who has the false nails and the fake tan. I am not the woman who has always had fitness in her life; a true athlete and someone who finds joy in maintaining the health of others through exercise a couple of times a week.  I am not that trainer.

I am this trainer:

“From a client perspective yes it is more comforting to have someone who has gone through it but you really have to dig deep and realize you are actually MORE qualified than most personal trainers because you’ve gone through/going through your own journey.

Most trainers will never know what it is like to struggle, struggle to walk because joints hurt, struggle to breath at the most simple tasks when first starting out.

You have the ability to read your clients better than most trainers, you know the excuses but you can also tell when a person is really being push to their limit.

So go with all confidence that this IS your life and you are actually over qualified compared to most and you are damn good at it.”

Thank you A, for so eloquently helping me see I do deserve this life because whether I realize it or not, I’m living it.

I am.

I also know that it is now MY time to shine.  The last seven years I have been an awesome behind the scenes person, doing a lot of the grunt work under some amazing leaders.  And it was a question posed to me late last night from a very wise and noble friend who asked, “When are you going to stop being the great assistant and start making some fame for yourself?”  This stopped me my tracks, because J was right.  I am most comfortable helping others succeed in their business.  Being the connector.  Being the ideas-person. Being the ‘doer’ and the reliable one to get shit done.  Well, I’m not doing that any more.  I deserve the direct rewards of my labour and I deserve to directly feel the joy in seeing people get to their goals.  It’s a strange thing to see success from the backseat.  I am ready to take the wheel.

What are you struggling with?  What is keeping you stuck in your relationship, your job, your town, your dysfunctional family, your battle in your mind?  Is it that you feel you don’t deserve what is on the other side?  Well, take it from me, you do deserve it.  No matter who in your past has convinced you otherwise, no matter who has beaten you down to a mushy pulp believing you only deserve the sub-par life or situation you are in… kick them in the shin and tell them to go to hell.  The one thing you DON’T deserve is to believe the bullshit that others may impose on you or that your own self-doubt creates. You actually may find that pain in the ass person is the only one that has the actual power to hold you back:  the reflection in the mirror.

I will be starting personal training sessions for anyone interested in working with me.  Email me at mebutdifferent@gmail.com.  Sessions will never be the same, will be fun and you will find that deserving self in you to live a healthier, more comfortable life.

Axo