Friday, January 28, 2011

Living Weightless

I started a thread on eDiets a while back...I guess it was a little after I started openly talking about some of my eating/work out behavior here. Hah...I just checked, it was a full on 5 months after that (and even 4 months of dealing with it privately until I posted it here)! I was afraid of being fully "out" with it, and putting it out there, even though it's a closed community, felt like more full disclosure than putting it up here, I guess.

ANYWAY, when i started that thread to openly share some of this stuff within that community, I called it "Living Weightless." The reason I chose it was because I want to be weightless in my mind...I don't want every single day in and day out to be about my weight...I was very heavy and weighed down emotionally (and physically) by my weight, and now I've lost it but I'm still here tremendously weighed down by this stuff in my I decided that it was fitting as I shared my path to finally living without that burden.

The past few weeks I feel like I've taken what feel like some enormous steps in the "Living Weightless" direction.  It's been actually a lot of small steps finally adding up to something that appears tangible.  I *know* there have been changes all along, but it's a nice feeling to be able to look and see how the baby steps have actually accumulated.

So, on to those tangible steps...

The weekend before the meet I was 146.2 on Friday. That weekend, I ate out not just once but TWICE, and that included two drinks on Saturday night (woot, date night :) I was also on complete rest - the stress of work and the house and training had really taken a toll, and with only 10 days until the meet I decided the best course of action was some major rest. So no training that Thursday - Sunday, not even easy cardio. Nada.

If you know me, right now you're reading that and you might just be in as much amazement as I was ;)  But all of it *felt* right.  I had no fear, no panicky guilt.

That Sunday, I woke up (period started too!) and I was 148.6.  So let's just recap - 4 days total rest, 2 meals out, drinking, AND period, and I was up just about 2.5lbs?

I got on that scale FULLY expecting the worst and I realized very calmly, very peacefully, "Oh...I'm doing ok, I can do this."

I also realized -
Tracking/Logging food had been out of my life since Thanksgiving
Precise and neurotic weighing & measuring had been gone since a little after that, early December?

And the scale, the scale was the ONE thing I was still hanging on to.
That week wasn't the BEST week for me to decide I was ready to give up the scale.  Because of the meet and because I was on the cusp of the weight class, I did need to monitor carefully.  I did stay off it again until Wednesday, a HUGE victory in and of was in fact, the first time (other than being WITHOUT a scale altogether) I'd stayed off of the scale for more than one day in probably close to 10+ years.

Friday before the meet, I think I mentioned there were some weigh-in shenanigans. EVEN then, I stayed relatively calm when I didn't make weight and had to make a visit to the sauna to make it happen.

I ate WELL on Friday, I didn't feel guilty, I didn't worry about what it would do to my weight - I ate to fuel myself for the meet.  Saturday I didn't do as well as in the past, but it was not out of fear or guilt, it really was just difficult for me to put anything into my tummy.

Sunday and Monday - I ate for recovery. Nothing crazy, but certainly not following the "norm" for me.

I stayed off the scale from the Friday before the meet until Tuesday of this week. Monday morning I actually picked it up and put it in the closet.  Tuesday I took it out, saw the reading, and put it back. Stayed put away on Wednesday.  Yesterday, another brief appearance and then back to the closet.

I thought last week when I realized I was going to be able to start letting go of the scale that I'd be better than every other day.  But that appears to be my comfort zone for now, and so for now it stands...until whenever it changes. It takes what it takes...I tried this in August and I managed one day off the scale.  One, and it instilled *total panic* back then.  Today, it's peace.

For now, post meet - I'm taking a little time off.  I initially said I was definitely taking some period of time off, but with the euphoria of the meet, that decision feels harder.  I do know that I need SOME time, and I've respected that this week and I know I will through at least next week too.  I'm still *tired* - deeply tired - so I've been kind to this body this week - I stayed out of the gym for the week and I got a massage last night.  Wednesday was the first day I tried ANYTHING, and I stuck to the 20 minute beginner workout on Bob Harper's Pure Strength DVD.  Today I worked out alongside my new client and tomorrow I'm pondering a walk along the beach after my appointment with Christie.

I'm excited to share all of this with her...she's been huge in helping me through this. Along with peeps following along here, and of course on eDiets.

We all know I'm not happy with how my body feels where I am, but I am happy with how I'm learning to live again, and love what I do have.  I love my strength, and I do love my overall health.  I love that I'm learning to have some respect, and appreciate my full journey. It's hard, and as I've said sooooo many times before - I know there will still be times when I falter or may "backslide" a little...but this is substantial to me, I'm on a new path and it actually feels right instead of forced, and as always - progress, not perfection :)

Maybe, almost weightless :)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Out With It - Raw Unity Wrap Up!

I've sat down to write this at least 5 times since Saturday so I'm convinced at this point I just need to be out with it. I think part of the problem is that I've just got so many emotions and thoughts and BIG THINGS to say it's hard for me to organize it all and spit it out.

So here goes...

Friday I woke up at 147.0, well under the weight class limit of 148.7, but...the weigh-in did not go quite as smoothly as I'd like. After a quick consultation with RC, there were some last minute weigh-in shenanigans that involved hanging out in a sauna for about 20 minutes, but ultimately - I made it and that's that! Official weigh-in: 147.4!

After that drama settled I went off for some food, a nap, and a little bit of work before picking Ms. T(ara) and her husband Dale up from the airport. It was sooooo sooooo good to see Ms. T, she's so much like me in many ways and it's just been a long time and squeezy gf hugs kinda just rock :) We had some dinner and then headed back to the hotel - early morning!

I woke up at 5am STARVING - seriously weird when that happens because it seems like the ONLY time I'm that hungry is the morning of a meet. I had half a brownie when I woke up, then wandered over to breakfast at 6:30 (when they opened). Tara and Dale joined me, then we were off!

Got to the meet about 8:15, women were scheduled to start lifting at 9:30. I figured I'd be first, and one look at the flights showed me I was right - no pressure! Opening the squats...opening the entire meet! In a moment of freak out, I dropped my planned opening attempt from 164 to 159 (note: this seems to be a pattern. work on confidence!).

Looked around for Dave, was a little disappointed (but I guess not truly surprised) that he said he'd be too busy to really help me out during the meet, so I called on Ms. T. I knew I was asking a lot from her, for so many reasons this was a very difficult task that I asked. She was supposed to have been lifting, this was supposed to have been her first meet, but just two weeks ahead she found out basically she had to stop lifting, stop everything, due to Adrenal Fatigue. T is NOT your "just stop" kind of girl, and while I know I can't even come close to fully understanding how she felt about that, we are so similar I do think I have an idea. On top of that, I know that the long day of travel the day before on top of the excitement and adrenaline from just being there for the day was going to take a toll on her physically. I know it was extremely hard mentally to be there and not be lifting...and, I know she felt some pressure that I was to some extent relying on her judgement and opinions about lifts and attempt selection when she had no experience of her own.

T was amazing from the first minute I asked her and agreed once I explained what I needed. Let me make it clear, with all that I had going on leading into the meet, and with all that was going on crazy there - I don't believe I'd have been at all successful without T stepping up by my side. I needed that other voice with me, so right up front, Tara...many many thanks to you.

Also want to give big props to Dale for his awesome yelling! It seems weird but it really does make a difference, and Dale was an AMAZING cheering section out there...he's who you're hearing on all the videos below. Thanks Dale!!

Warm-ups went well, Tara came over to the bullpen area just ahead of my first lift and helped me get in the zone. The music came on (theme song suggested by the Fabulous RC) and it was my time to get things started!

1st Attempt Squat: 159.8
Good Lift! Nice start to the meet!

Went smoothly, a quick consultation with T and we decided to stay with the plan...

2nd Attempt Squat: 187.4
The lift was good, but it was "off" and it was a bit more of a struggle than I'd have liked in a 2nd attempt. Looking back on it I'm wondering if it wasn't because the jump from 159 to 187 was too big...

Consulted with T again, there was a moment of waffling on my part and then she said "you've got it I think you should go for it" so I did - she was right, I knew I had it, no reason for doubt. 3rd attempt entered...

This was for almost 9lb PR: 203.9

When that was over I was shaking like a crazy person! I couldn't believe it - it was a HUGE victory for me, over 200lbs from when I started not being able to squat at all!

The flights were big so there was a LOT of time between the last squat and the first bench. I tried to eat but found it difficult so I only ate a little. Warm-ups started and I quickly found I was having difficulty with my setup. Couldn't quite put my finger on it, although I was having a hard time with my back which was weird, because I felt nothing during squats. I told Tara to please remind me to slow down and take my time during feeling was I was rushing it and that's why all my warm-ups felt "off." The plan was to hopefully hit a PR at 126, here's how it actually went down:

1st Attempt Bench: 104.7

Good lift - I did slow down and take my time for set-up but I still felt off. The lift was no problem though, so we went ahead with the 2nd attempt as planned...

2nd Attempt Bench: 115.7

Also a good lift, but same issue with the back/set-up. It wasn't quite as speedy as it needed to be for me to feel confident in the 126 third attempt, and Tara agreed, so we went for the small victory..1.3lb PR with a choice of 121.3 for 3rd attempt...

3rd Attempt Bench: 121.3
No lift. Just couldn't get it...set-up was still off, back was off, and obviously the lift was off...just didn't have it. Maybe squat took too much..I don't know, but it got stuck a few inchces off the chest, and the spotters grabbed it.

I had a moment after the missed Bench where I needed to get my head together. I was pissed since once again I've hit MORE than that several times in training, but...the lift was over and done, I had an AMAZING squat PR, and I still had MY lift left to do, as T pointed out :) I was a little concerned about how much the squats had taken from me, and had some waffling and self-doubt about my planned attempts for deads...T and I decided to just play it by ear, that the 1st dead was not a problem regardless, so stick with it and then go from there. Got my head on straight, and knew that was the right way to go.

There was another LONG break between bench and deads. Still had a difficult time tummy was rebelling every time I put something in my mouth I kind of wanted to puke. Nothing was sitting right. T finally intervened and was basically like "i don't care if you don't want it, you NEED it so DO it!" And she was absolutely right. I had started to crash during that break, and after I forced down some food I started to come back to it fairly quickly...

Got my fab DL socks out - ninjaaaaaaa
T had brought them for me, cuz she rocks like that - check 'em out:

Warm-ups finally started, and I was getting fired up for deads. Did a few warm-up reps and then it was TIME. I'm getting pumped just recalling this part of the meet, hah! I opened pretty light (comparitively) - saving it up for that 3rd attempt. I was second to lift for deads, but I was ready to GO when it was my turn...totally amped! T told me to hold onto it, not to unleash it all quite yet, she said "You can do 275 all day, hold on to it for later" She was right...

1st Attempt Deadlift: 275.6
Easy! Good lift!

Quick consult with T, decided to stick with the plan...

2nd Attempt Deadlift: 297.6
Easy! Good lift!

OMG - this was THE moment..I had to submit my 3rd attempt...the choice was 319 or 325..which is it?! Just asking that question out loud to T and I's 325 baby!!

Watching the rest of the women lift between my 2nd and 3rd attempt just got me MORE amped. The deadlift is an EMOTIONAL's one that you can fight and pull and pull and spotter is going to take it from you. Sometimes it seems sheer WILL will finish the's just awesome to watch! It really got me pumped, and I knew what was coming for me...I felt like I had to make this lift happen for everything that's happened, for everyone that's supported and been behind me...I needed to unleash all of it on that bar!

Just before I went out for this lift (a potentially 10.2lb PR) T said to me, "Go out there and rip that bar off the floor for EVERYONE!" YEAH!

I'm so excited about this lift, there was a lot of emotion and a lot of relief and release of emotion with this was the best feeling lift EVERRRR!

here it is...3rd Attempt Deadlift: 325.2lbs

An amazing meet all in all. Two *huge* lift PRs, my total increased by 13lbs (13 and not 18 because technically I lost 5lbs on the bench) in just 3 months, and I got to see and spend the weekend with Tara.

I mean seriously, could it have gotten much better? We hung around for the awards and then headed on out to get some FOOD. I was ready to eat by then, hahah..I think my tummy settled.

We went out to the Outback, by the time we actually got to order though I was so out of it I coudn't even read the menu. T and Dale had to explain my choices to me, hahah. But a little food in me and I was feeling much much better after that.

Back at the hotel room, Tara and I had some time to just catch-up...good good stuff. I really miss having girlfriends around :(

Sunday morning I dropped Tara and Dale off at the airport and headed back towards home. I woke up sore, but more so very tender to the touch! That was a first..I felt like my entire body was bruised, and the slightest touch hurt! Even my bra hurt...ugh. I was definitely wiped out...a few days later though and I'm feeling whole and almost normal again.

I've got a lot more to share, some personal victories with eating and the scale, and a lot of it stemming from/near the meet. But for tonight I did just want to get all of this up and out...

Ultimately, I placed dead last. I was last in my weight class, last in the overall "middleweights," and last of all weight classes combined. But for me, I had a great day and I'm happy with the overall performance.

It was an awesome experience, I still smile when I think of it, I'm actually proud of me for it. And again, super grateful for Tara, and for everyone who tuned in and cheered me on. My Facebook page still leaves me grinning when I look at it!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

RUM Today!

I haven't posted in ages, THINGS have been getting in my way, sucking my energy and time and this has been the last place I've come, unfortunately. All this time though, training has continued on. There have definitely been days when my energy has been extremely low, my strength definitely has been affected. But the past few days I've been able to disengage from the THINGS that have been distractions and start to really focus on what I've been training for, and that's today - The Raw Unity Powerlifting Championships.

The past few days I've made ME the priority and done my best to balance out all the important factors: the sleeping, eating, training, resting...all of it has been coming together and this morning I woke up feeling SOLID for the first time in weeks.

RC told me to go out there and be a "power BEAST" and that's just what I intend to do.

All my strength, all my power, all my love, everything I've got!

I'm not coming off that platform today with anything left - all I've got is going out there. I have some big lifts ahead, and I need to own them, they're totally within my power.

The Plan

The 3rd attempts listed are what I've been training towards, but a smart plan is flexible if needed:

Squat: 165.3 / 187.4 / 203.4

Bench: 104.7 / 115.7 / 126.8

Deads: 275.6 / 297.6 / 325.2

Total: 655.4

Virtual support WELCOMED - Live streaming of the meet starts at 9:30am EST on Saturday here: Women will open the meet today, and as usual I will probably be right up first or very near first since the lifters squatting the least open ;)

It looks to be like a very long day with 3 flights instead of the usual 2. So all women will do all 3 of their squats in rotation, then all of the very lightweight men and their 3 squats, then all of the lighweight men and THEIR 3 squats...THEN women will do their bench and so on.

I know I have friends and family tuning in for the live stream, and I'm beyond excited and grateful to have the amazing T cheering me on *in person* I'm a lucky girl for that :) She's pretty amazing these days. A few others will be stopping in too, Ms. Tina is coming by to cheer, and possibly, of all people, sunglasses trainer guy from the gym may be in town, hah!

With all the positive support behind me, with my solid training and prep up to this point, with all I've got out there on the platform...

Today is mine.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

FitarellaTV & The Pulse!

Tomorrow is shaping up to be an exciting day in more ways than one :)

I'm super excited that Ms. Jacqueline Carla, AKA Fitarella has invited me to come by FitarellaTV tomorrow around 1pm. We're going to talk stuff. Stuff like weight loss, getting fit, powerlifting, and what's to come (hmm just what IS to come?!), and I have to say I am pretty psyched about the whole thing :) Check it out if you can!

What's FitarellaTV?

FitarellaTV is a fun, interactive women’s health show on The Pulse Network, broadcast live online every Monday, 1pm EST (streaming live to iPad & iPhone as well). If you miss a show, no worries, each episode is available on demand on Fitarella.TV and The Pulse Network after the live show. On FTV, no topic is off limits! From nutrition to sex, I cover it all! And YOU can join the conversation during the live show by calling in, tweeting or skyping.

To connect with the show:
calling - 877-pulse-411
twitter- @thepulse (#thepulse)
skype- thepulsenetwork (all one word)

Check it out if you can! Fun!