Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Trying to get back into Gear!



I have a confession… I haven’t been on program since the end of Round 2.  The week after I was fine because I was busy and had finale to plan for.  But when I came back from finale I just didn’t get back into my routine.  I am floating in ‘No Man’s Land’: Pre-season.

I feel lost and bewildered.  Unable to grab onto anything solid – a routine is what I am searching for!  I went for a run today. It is not a routine but it is a step in the right direction.  Now I just have to keep making that same step, over and over and pretty soon I will be where I need to be.  So here is to first steps!

And to making that shirt fit me instead of being so tight I can see the fat rolls from here!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Finale Weekend: Going Home!

I had a terrible attempt at a sleep in the next day which set me off in poor form for the day.  I am sorry to say that I spent the day anxious and feeling tired and crappy!

I took my medication early which helped me get through the long wait between check out and the flight!  Nat and I lazed around until noon and then left our bags with the concierge.  We went for a stroll as Nat wanted to pop into a shop that wasn't too far away.  I walked past it accidently but ended up in the botanic Gardens!

I don't know what was interesting in the tree.. I just wanted a picture of me climbing a tree! lol

And come on, this is cool (nothing to do with my medication!)

It was raining when we left Brisbane...

But the plane was soon up above the clouds and we were headed home! 

It was a great weekend and I was so happy to get home!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Finale Weekend–The Big Day!

This was a hard day for me.  I woke up after a bit of a sleep in and Nat had gone out for breakfast – I was left to my own devices! 

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I snuggled up in a bath robe, ordered French toast for breakfast and got myself dressed and ready for the workout.  It seemed to take forever, but I enjoyed it.






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We got to the finale all ready to rock and we did rock!  I had a blast in the beginner section – I decided to hand out there with Nat for support (for both of us) and I am glad I did.  I wasn’t 100%, the anxiety was getting to me a bit but I did have fun!





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I had an absolute ball getting ready.  It took a while though – like 2hrs!  I even put on fake eyelashes!







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It was a great night!  I met Rob and Michelle, and others from the lean and strong team.  I met Kath and grabbed a pic with her, and with Splash too (she was the overall winner!).


But we were happy to get back to the hotel room and crash!

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Finale Weekend–The Confessional

I had an awesome time, but was it a little too awesome???

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First stop was Myer!  I had a chicken, bacon, and avocado roll from Sumo Salad followed by $150 worth of clothes (hey, it was cold and I HAD to buy a jacket and the Guess shirt was right near the checkout – it wanted me!).

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Night one.. Hokkien Noodles, Nat had the salad and bread roll and I had the chocolate!

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Later the same night… at the Pig’n’Whistle with Nat and other ambassadors (and the lovely and amazing Aimee who took the picture for me!).  I had the risotto balls with aioli – it was an entree so only a small serve… I swear!   I went straight to bed when we got home (well, right after a hot chocolate!)

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Breakfast!  OMG!  I only ate half of that… it was waaaaaaay yummy – even the strawberry was warmed to perfection!  I did not use the syrup, but I did add a little berry compote!

It was off to the workout then… almost 450 calories burned off however I am pretty sure I got busted in the line up for photos while eating a Special K chocolaty bar!  Oooops!

We got back to the hotel and decided on having a larger late lunch as we knew there wouldn’t be much to eat at the party…

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I am pretty sure that it was at least two serves of protein in that meal!  I was able to make it through the night with only a couple of the little canapes served throughout the night!  However, just in case it makes it to the public arena, the photographer at the party caught me eating and took a photo!  I honestly didn’t eat that much!

Now, the next morning I had oats with honey, not quite worth a photo, and then a subway roll before departing on the plane… I arrived home to a delicious minted roast lamb with roasted vegetables and gravy, and finished off my bottle of Moscato to end the night!

The indulgences are over but it was lovely to indulge in good healthy foods, to know when I had eaten enough, and to have the foresight to plan my food throughout the weekend so I wasn’t tempted to binge on the adequately stocked mini-bar!

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Yes, that is Tim Tam fingers and a block of Lindt chocolate!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

My Finale Weekend–Day One

finale party 002I awoke Friday morning with excited anticipation.  It was finally the day!  My nerves started racing as I got ready, running around looking for my heart rate monitor, arranging to pick up a Census form (and get asked on a date!), and generally flaffing about!  But then I made a big decision – I took a valium!  I have never before taken medication for my anxiety in the entire 15yrs I have had it except for six short months on some poxy anti-depressant which did nothing!  But I wish I had have found this sooner!  Within about 10mins, I was excited and happy – just as I should be!  Incredible.  I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders – a burden I have been carrying around with me for 15yrs.  I feel free!

finale party 013Okay, so I obviously got through the flight unscathed… It was awesome!  You can see forever out of the plane window – the horizon kind of blurs off into this haziness because you can literally see off the edge of the Earth!  Amazing!

We landed and headed off to find the taxi rank with our luggage.. and $50 later we are at the Hilton with the doors being opened for us!  We were able to get into our room early which was fantastic and we unpacked and headed down to Queen St and the Myer Centre for a look see!  I left my jacket at home so I headed upstairs and found a nice warm hoodie from Country Road and, of course, just had to grab a Guess shirt from right next to the checkout counter!  We won’t mention prices!

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finale party 025After that we strolled the 3km down to the nail place and the nearly died in the process – who would have thought 3km was so damn far to walk!  They were lovely when we got there.. Nat went first and then I jumped up and got my new nails ‘fixed up’ – shaped properly and the gel buffed down a bit – and then it was onto the toes and eyebrows!  Apparently I have lovely shaped eyebrows and got away with a tweezer and tinting!  I convinced Nat to grab a taxi to the hotel.. the poor thing was feeling sick but putting on a brave face!

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The time had been flying away from us though and it was 5pm – time for room service!  I had a lovely stir-fry while Nat had a power nap and garden salad!  We headed downstairs afterward for the bag packing exercise which was a huge amount of fun!  I met some wonderful women and had an absolute ball, even though my poor hands are totally smashed!  Even more exciting though.. Nat made me accept an invite out for dinner afterward!  I raced back to the room and popped on my jeans though!  We went to the Pig’n’Whistle on queen street mall and had a wonderful time chatting and getting to know each other.  I had an awesome meal – only an entree - risotto balls with aoli! It was so yummy!

Headed back to the hotel after that.. ended the night with a nice chat with Nat over a hot chocolate and then snuggled up to my Cookie Monster in the huge soft fluffy pillow bed – sleep came quickly and easily!

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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Cookie Monsters Adventures: Packing for finale!

Well, the flight is booked, hotel paid for, valium in my purse.. it's time to pack my bags!

I thought we could get away with a carry on bag and loaded up my Lorna Jane bag with all the required items.  The only problem was that Cookie Monster couldn't fit!  Or my laptop, phone charger, camera charger, snacks, training shoes, headphones, handbag, magazine, and jeans!
So it was with great trepidation that I jumped online to find out how much extra the luggage would cost me.. thankfully only $24 for both flights!

So, with the luggage allowence organised I set forth to re-pack!  I pulled out my old suitcase.. used once 5 years ago (uni res school) and currently holding many fabrics from my sewing days.  I am proud to say that everything fit so nicely in there, shoes, clothes, toiletries, make-up, book, swimmers, electronics, and in the morning, my laptop!  We won't mention what happened to the stuff that was in the suitcase before..

Totally crazy stuff, but it seems that I am actually going to do this..  I am flying down to Brisbane and going to the finale party!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Hitting the wall.

After a few good weeks on a high, it seems I have smashed into a wall.  It started yesterday when the reality hit that there was less then a week until I jumped on that plane for finale.  I still have census deliveries to do, I still have a take home stats exam to do, I still have my presentation to plan for.  I am stressed out and sore and tired.  My mind has started that negative spiral that leads to me not jumping on that plane, the mind frame that leads to agorophobia and a life restricted by fears.

I was anxious yesterday, spent the day knowing that my stress level was rising and decided a good workout should fix it.. I rocked strong man training and I sure did feel better!  But then I asked about an assessment and booked an appointment, and then the manager commented on the change in my photo - she didn't recognise me from the picture on file for me!  She asked for me to send pictures.. sure I said. 
Normally that would be fine but it just adds to my stress levels.  I went in for pump and combat today.. made it through combat but then started feeling a bit icky at the back of my throat.  I debated in my mind for half the class, my anxiety levels way up there - one minute okay, the next panicy and then I decided to call it quits and left half way through.. I felt in control again and was okay.  I went home and still felt like crap but went about my day.

I just feel sad and horrid and panicy all the time.  The pressure on my chest just won't let up, my happy place has disappeared!  I am just imagining myself crying and panicing as I get on the plane, not wanting to get on, feeling that terror.

My brain just isn't hearing 'that is not rational'  it doesn't understand it.. the pathways are blocked or whatever.  I try and tell myself.. I wont' panic, nothing will happen, there is nothing to fear.  But there is.. fear.  That is what I fear and where can go to hide from that?

I am even thinking that I might drive down just so I don't have to go through that - so that I stay in control.  I am even freaking at taking a taxi to the airport!

I tell myself that feeling like this doens't mean that I will have a panic attack.  I might be fine on the day, but right now I feel like poop and I don't wanna!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Transforming my family

The 12wbt challenge is about so much more then getting yourself fit and healthy.. it transfers over into every aspect of your life and influences those you love the most!

These are my youngest boys,  Cam is 6yo, and JD is 8yo.  They both have developmental dyspraxia of speech, Cam's is quite severe and at the start of this year he began school as 'non-verbal' and required disability funding.  The dyspraxia also means their motor skills are little bit behind the eight ball as well so getting them into some kind of sport is important - but something I have put off due to my own social anxiety.  My eldest is 12 and has Aspergers - he is struggling with the idea of joining a club due to the social pressure and conformity required, but he has had a great success in his soccer club at school - he got a mention in the newsletter for running nearly half the field to kick the ball to the person who scored a goal!

For Cam it is all a bit of fun, he loves his 'ninja costume' but finds it pretty tiring.  He is quite funny to watch - all enthusium and no control!  Honestly, that about sums up his personality too!  He is so loving and free and honest in every thing he does!

Jayden takes things a little more seriously though, those couple of years make all the difference and he is very ready to learn a discipline like this.. I would go so far as to say that he really needs it!

I am so happy that I took the step to enrol them, though I do hope I find something that Dyllan loves aswell.  Quite possibly though I may have to accept that the chess club will be the most social he gets!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

My Rewards!

 Well, as I promised myself.. a shopping spree at the end of the round!  I've actually been buying a fair bit through this round which I will update with over the week.  I hate buying clothes as I struggle to work out what looks good on me but it is so much easier these days!

1. The bikini for summer
2. A light summery dress
3. A new top to go with short shorts
4. A dress to wear with the bikini
5. A little reminder of how far I have come!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Some pics...

I am a champion!

Lean and strong!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Have I won Lean and Strong?

Back in pre-season, when I decided to join Lean and Strong, part of that motivation was that it was at least possible for me to 'win' a placing.  The 12wbt is, afterall, a competition based program.  Back then I was petrified that I might actually win!  I had already decided to attend the finale party and I think that if I had of been told back then that I would have to get up and accept a prize from Mish on stage, I probably would have ate myself into losing out of fear!

But here I am now, Mish has just announced that the winner of Lean and strong will win some awesome home gym equipment (Technogym), and I am thinking, "Do I deserve to win?".

Part of me says, "No way!".  Everyone is so fit and strong, they can do chin-ups and bench press huge amounts and I can't!  But you know what?  This is my journey.

Whether or not I deserve to win is not the question, the fact is, I already have! 
I set out with a goal in mind, lose 6kg and get strong.  I have lost 4kg, but I also chose that path as I increased my protein intake to allow for muscle building, and there is still a week to go!  And I have certainly gotten stronger!  I couldn't do squats, but now do squats with perfect form with a 20kg barbell.  I couldn't do lunges, in fact, they had me in tears for the first two weeks of this program.  I can now do lunges with perfect form, and can even do them with 5kg hand weights!  I can do push-ups on my toes, not too many, but more then the couple I managed at the start of the round.  I even did 200 push-ups (mixed between toes and knees) in a 1hr kickboxing class!  I've learnt to do burpees, pushing out 60 of them first go!  My 1km time trial speed is improving, and best of all.. I can now do a sit-up (ab stage 1 finally!).

Have I followed the program exactly.. no.  I've eaten poorly at times but have always come back to the program - I know how to jump straight back in and recover when I stray from my chosen path.  I didn't follow the gym machine program for a couple of weeks as I was too busy trying out fitness classes at the gym.. five new classes in one week, two the next!  But I certainly have maintained and improved my fitness throughout the program, relishing in the opportunity for daily exercise! 

I feel strong, and not just physically, but my mind as well.  I have always lived in fear, an anxiety disorder, agorophobia.. it ripped my confidence in myself apart.  It is easy enough to be brave when you don't know fear.  When you haven't felt your body fail you in the face of fear, the panic, the nausea, the hot and cold sweats, the pressure crushing your chest and heart.  I know fear, and I know what it is like when your mind and body succumbs to it. I don't want to go there again but I realise now that it is a risk that is worth taking.  I might just feel that fear, I might want to run and hide, I might even fail, but it is worth it to walk in the sun.  I will never go back to that dark place again, but not because I walk cautiously in the shadows.  I will fight for my place in the sunshine, for my mind to free of the burden that fear has place upon it.

I am so proud of myself.  I have already won.  I have won strength, self-belief, and freedom.