On a Journey to Wellness

Come with me on my journey to losing weight, getting healthy and going out to meet the world head-on!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Typing from a new computer

So I have a new laptop now and I'm getting used to it. I hope this laptop and I will have a lot of new entries to come. Wish us luck!

I don't usually name my electronics but I'll take suggestions if you have them. LOL


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

How do you stop emotional eating?

It's almost the end of another chapter in my life. Two chapters actually... at the same time. One is my job working as a Teacher Naturalist in the San Jacinto mountains in Southern California. The other is having to end a wonderful relationship I started with an amazing man I met in the San Jacinto mountains in Southern California. Both chapters end for the same reason; I am moving to the Eastern Sierra mountains ( oh those mountains) for a new job as a Lead Instructor, teaching communities about water systems and water diversion in California. It'll be an awesome position, in a beautiful place I love (that's where I initially reached my 50 lb loss mark), but the fact that I'm leaving behind another beautiful place and a wonderful person to do it is making me more emotional than I care to admit.

Which brings out the whole idea about emotional eating. I am a professional emotional eater. It's so engrained in me I do it subconsciously and have a hard time figuring out if I'm hungry or just bored, or sad, or mad. I remember the first time I cried over a boy the first bit of advise my mother gave me was "Elina, please don't take it out on eating. Stay away from the kitchen. Go do something else." I have kept my mother's words with me since then.

So now that I'm getting close to leaving I need to  focus on different things in order to help me stay away from food. I need to focus on finishing my job here strong. I need to focus on getting ready for the new job. I need to start calorie counting and reading over specific diet recipes for PCOS women. I need to start training for a new triathlon. Never mind that I haven't registered for one yet. I need to give as much attention to the wonderful people in my life before I have to say goodbye.

I've been getting sad and therefore a bit distant from others, including friends and family. I don't want to lose my connections with the people I care about because of how I feel. On the contrary I should have them as a support system, as I wish to be a support for others. All these things are things I need to use, and have used before to keep me away from food.

It's not easy though, since food has been my escape for so long and I have a hard time stopping once I start eating something I  enjoy eating. Oh those trigger foods. We're talking sugar, bread, cheese, more sugar, and more bread too. I'm hoping that finding alternatives to the fatty, sugary foods I crave will help me get busy and not eat, but if I do eat, I eat things that aren't so harmful.

I've fought emotional eating before and I can do it again. I feel like I'm actually preparing for a battle... damn I need to stretch first! And that's exactly what all this prep is; preparing myself for a battle I'll start once I actually move. 26 days left.

Let's get ready! Stay away from food by keeping busy and focusing on my health and my friends. Deal with my emotions straight on and not with ice cream. Check.

Good luck everyone!


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Still trying to figure things out.

Two weeks since my first triathlon and you would think I would have gotten some sort of life epiphany after the event. That hasn't happened. In reality I feel like something is missing. I didn't feel like I gave it my all that day and I regret it. I had so much self doubt up to the event, and even during the event that I was more scared about finishing the thing than I was about pushing myself or enjoying myself.

I also thought I would lose weight. I didn't lose a lot of weight and the little I lost I think I've regained in these last two weeks.

Sigh, it really goes to show that weight loss and self worth is more of a mental challenge. I need to figure out how I can get back to feeling good about myself and really taking control of my eating.

Today I was belaying (helping people rock climb by holding the rope that supports them). After we finished helping kids climb we gave parents a chance to try it. I helped a woman that seemed maybe late 40's/ early 50's and maybe 150 lbs climb up our tower. She easily made it to the top, with minimal exertion. I helped her down, congratulated her and took her off belay. She exclaimed that she was out of shape. I automatically responded with "Neither am I." and "I don't think I've ever been in shape." 

Right after I said that a part of me yelled in my head, "You just did a triathlon! You hike a half mile in 15 minutes! You can hike up hills in 90 degree weather! You can touch past your toes easily, and carry around large packs! What do you mean you're out of shape?"

But I guess that's the point. I can do all these things and yet I haven't been able to get the body I've been dreaming of. I still can't run faster than a mile in 12 minutes. I still can't ride a bike without almost bursting in to tears for fear of going downhill in a rocky trail. I still can't climb a rock or dance without getting tired.

I still have that image in my head that I can't call myself fit unless I look the part. If I'm not a size in the single digits. If I don't have muscle definition. If I don't have the right curves. etc etc If I don't have any of these things it means I'm not fit. And if I'm not fit than everything I've done so far doesn't count.

It's not true and I know it. But I have such a hard time accepting it. I know people that don't have model bodies that have achieved some amazing things. I know they're strong and fit and wonderful people. If I were to tell them that because they don't have a 6 pack or a size 0 waist than they're failures that would be ridiculous! But if someone were to say that to me, I wouldn't believe them. (I don't actually think being a size 0 is the right size for me. It's just an exaggerated example to make a point). 

I need to wrap my head around all of this and figure myself out. It's frustrating and I don't know exactly where to start. I guess I can just start by taking care of my health as much as I can.

Good luck to everyone,

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Triathlon training complete.

Yesterday I completed my first triathlon. I stopped updating this blog, not because I had given up on my training but more in an act of stress. At the time I was angry and exhausted, unused to the new use of energy and unsure about what in the world I had gotten myself in to.

Instead of chucking it all I continued to work on my training, just not with the same intensity as January. I got a lot of bruises, and I had to borrow a friends bike because mine wouldn't work. I ended up going to a race preview in March and learned what the bike route was really like... on a bike. I learned that going down rocky trails on a bike I'm not used to riding is absolutely terrifying!

I eventually had to rent a wet suit and learn how to swim in it. I ended up jumping in my camps lake. I can tell you that wet suits are a pain to put on and a pain to get used to. I couldn't breathe or move well. It felt restricting the first couple of times I put it on. But after a few days of jumping in the lake I got used to it. There was only one week left before the race. It was as good as I was going to get.

Getting my trans area ready
Race day came yesterday April 6, 2013. I had been nervous, I hadn't trained as well as I should have. In my nervous state I started over eating like mad. I ended up gaining weight. I weigh the same as I did in January when I first started training. I didn't feel prepared and I knew I would need support for the day.

Checking the water before the swim
Luckily one of my housemates not only assigned himself to cheer me on but also signed up for the 3 mile trail run that was part of my course. (By the way, not only did he win in his age division but he won the whole freaking race!) His presence was a godsend since I couldn't think that morning and he had to be my brain and remind me that I had to register, set up my transition area, warm up, put on my wet suit.. etc etc.. LOL

 My race was a 1/2 mile swim, 7.5 mile bike, and 3 mile run.

Running in to the lake!
I started the swim and everything was going fine. I stayed in the back of my wave and slowly started passing people. The wet suit I had rented didn't fit me perfectly so water started entering the suit. This had happened before during training so I didn't fret about it. I got out and started jogging toward the transition area.

Once I got out of the water, I took my time getting ready for the bike. I didn't want to forget anything and the point was to complete the race, not necessarily try to compete against the veterans.

I grabbed my bike and my helmet and I started. The asphalt section went fine but once I hit the trail we immediately hit the "hike-a-bike" section and I stopped to take a bite of a power bar and hydrate, then start the climb up the hill. I didn't anticipate the speed other cyclists would have zooming past me. I couldn't ride as fast as they so I had to stop and let multiple riders pass me many times.

getting my scrape checked by the medic after the race
I finally made it back to the transition area. Parked my bike, took off my helmet, hydrated and ate another piece of a power bar. I started the run and I wasn't feeling too bad. My right foot was acting up a little bit (that plantar fasciitis is still making a presence) but not enough to be a problem. I had to hike up the first big hill right at the beginning of the run, and when I started the downhill I suddenly stepped wrong and in order not to twist my left ankle I put my weight to the right and ended up scraping my right knee. Better a scraped knee than a twisted ankle. I spent a couple of minutes rubbing and rotating my left ankle and then kept going.
I would hike the uphills and jog the downhills. I finally finished the last hill and rounded the corner to the end. I felt like I couldn't run any faster than a slow jog but I kept going. I finally saw the finish line right in front of me and sprinted the end.
sprint to the finish!

I couldn't really move once I finished and I had to ask the volunteer who was taking the ankle chip bracelets to take mine off for me because I couldn't bend. It was a good time. My parents and my friend were there at the end. I asked my mother what time it was and she told me it was 10:59 a.m. I had made it in under 3 hours! I thought it would take me 4.

With the parents at the finish
Because I did the recreational tri I didn't qualify for division awards, so I didn't wait for the award ceremony. We left before my time was posted so I still don't know what my time was. I do know I started the race a little past 8:03 a.m. and finished a little before 10:59 a.m. so I'm guessing my time was around 2 hours and 55 ish minutes.

It was an awesome experience and I now know I have a lot to work on. I think I'll definitely have to try again. I'm thinking I need to read up on proper training techniques BEFORE I start training so I know what I need before I need it. Like a wet suit. Or a proper mountain bike. Or learn what mountain biking IS. LOL

Until next time!