Monday, September 27, 2010

Week 2 (Day 8) Competition

The forum for the 12wbt is an awesome resource.  It allows connection and support.  A sense of family prevails with encouragement, knowledge, and motivation in bucket loads.  But along with it comes one of my weaknesses.  A sense of competition and jealousy.  This is a side of myself I have battled with for years, probably based somewhere in fear - fear of social rejection, fear of failing, fear of anything and everything!  It also seems to extend into the feeling of 'If I can't do it perfectly then why do it at all' because, afterall, if I am not the best then surely I am failing?

So I read how someone has burnt 2000 or 3000 calories in a session and I immediately think 'okay, well that has to be over a few hours!'  which it probably is, but why can't my first thought be 'wow that is awesome'.  Maybe it is because I can't 'see' the person and feel that emotional connection, but in all honesty, its because I feel inadequate.  It shatters my own sense of success when I hear of others succeeding in much better style then myself.  I haven't managed numbers anywhere near that. 

I tell myself different things to ease my feeling of inadequacy - 'slow and steady wins the race' 'they must be bigger and less fit then me so they burn more calories' 'they mustn't have work or study to get done' or even 'maybe they are fiddling the numbers or doing it over a few hours or something!'  Anything to face the reality that they are just doing more then I am because they have chosen it and I haven't.

Why didn't I choose it?  I only have 8kg of fat to lose (add in some muscle in there though so it will probably only be 6kg all up) so I don't need to pull huge numbers.  I don't want to burn myself out by pushing too hard.  I don't want to set myself up to fail by expecting too much of myself when I already have a lot of other commitments.  And I dont' even know if it is possible for me, as I am already quite fit, to burn that many calories in an hour or two.

I should be, and will be, happy with the numbers I pull for myself.  I am the only one on my journey, the only one in my body, living my life.  It is up to me to choose what is right for me at this time in my life and I am not 'comparable' to anyone else.  So stop comparing and just do what you need to do.


  1. The curse of the thinker! You're obviously a smart chick, so you need to make sure you use your smarts for goodness instead of against yourself. All these self-imposed fears and defences are exactly the reason why we are in a position that we need to change our behaviours in order to get our bodies back to being fit and healthy.
    With only 8kgs to lose, you just need to stick to the 1200 calorie intake and aim for 500 calories of exercise for 6 days a week and at the end of the 12WBT, you'll be at your goal. Doesn't matter who else burns what - just focus only on YOU and take one day at a time, and in 88 more of them (days, that is), you'll be where YOU want to be.

  2. You just have to think about YOU. A friend of mine gave me an awesome quote. It's from a book about running that she is reading and I'm not sure of the author, but the quote is :

    "Runners must learn to compete with themselves and not against anyone else. If they race against others, they will soon give up, because they will find so many others who are faster than they are. Running is its own reward."

    Sure it's a running quote but I think it can be applied to any exercise/fitness challenge we set ourselves.

  3. well i can totally identify with this....

    i am hardly burning the 500 cals in a session at the moment but the way i see it is 2 weeks ago i was doing no exercise. So what i am doing is better than before. My eating is impeccable so i cant complain there. so the kilos will come off

    good luck

  4. Jen, there is nothing wrong with being competitive as long as it isn't a negative factor. You sound like you've got your head screwed on. I can relate to the competitive bit and I think it is what really motivates a lot of us anyway. You have just been brave to put it out there and not hidden from it.

  5. I completely understand this!! Being an A type Virgo Dutch girl (boy what a combination) I have my own issues about 'all or nothing'. I do now limit myself in the forums because I get the same feelings when I read about people blowing off that many calories in a session. I am sure I am not doing more than 200 or 300 in a day. BUT I figure that as long as I am burning something, and eating well, then that is the best I can do and I need to keep my envy in check.

    I hope you can look at what you are doing and give yourself a huge pat on the back for holding it all together - and doing really well!