Such Sadness

I saw a lady at the library last night and I can’t stop thinking about her. She was young, friendly, and smart. She was dressed nicely. She was beautiful. She was also probably around 350 pounds. She was sitting next to her co-worker, a bright and handsome young man. As they chatted back and forth, I was filled with such sadness. Sadness for her… and for me.

Memories came flooding back… Me, the overweight girl with the pretty face, next to a young handsome man who not only had no interest in me sexually, but might also have been ashamed to be seen with me and have people think we were a couple. Oh let’s be honest here. There’s no “might” about it. There is a specific memory of me and my guy friend, who I’d had a massive crush on, walking through the food court in college. There was an exact moment in time when I realized he didn’t want to be “seen” with me by his peers. He didn’t want people to think we were a couple. Obviously, it hurt. 20 years later and I still feel the sadness. My brain can look back on it and see that I really wasn’t all that big, maybe a size 16. I realize that I was beautiful and smart and my guy friend was a superficial jerk not to see my whole picture. Yet, it still makes me sad.

Last night, in that moment, I was transported right back to that place of pain and my heart broke for the pretty young woman in front of me. She was smiling, but she wasn’t happy. She kept her head down. She didn’t make eye contact with anyone around her. She appeared completely focused on the task at hand, never lifting her head and never really making eye contact with the bright, young man next to her, but she wasn’t completely focused on that task. Her mind was wandering, gauging people, gauging reactions. I’m sure of it.

In many ways, I still am her. I still automatically determine if I’m the fattest person in the room. In Crossfit, I usually am. I try to be okay with that, but I’m not. It makes me want to work that much harder because I always feel like I have something to prove. I don’t want to be dismissed. I don’t ever want to be known as the person who just shows up and coasts through workouts, cutting corners and doing the bare minimum. I want to kick arse and stop being last! I want to work on my endurance and get faster. I want to lift heavier with better form. I want to stop being the sad, beautiful lady hiding in the corner.

All day long I’ve been thinking about my journey to health and how fortunate I am to have people in my life to show me the way. My hope is to one day become the “After” photo and inspire other people to start their own journeys. One day….


What’s a Good Fran Time?

Today was my second Fran. I went into it with the thought of forgetting the first one, establishing a new baseline, and then going from there. Now that I finished, I’m still wondering, what makes a “good” Fran time? 

My first Fran, a few months ago, was just under 5 minutes. I felt like the time was good, but it just didn’t “feel” good. The weights (45#) felt too light and by the end, it didn’t feel like I’d done the epic Fran, but just another workout. I left thinking I should have done 55#. It was not a satisfying workout at all. 

Fran came back around today and I was looking forward to doing 65#. Right before the workout I realized 65# wasn’t the Athlete weight. It was the Competitor weight. SHOCK! I had it stuck in my head that I was going to do 65# and after some momentary fear of the word “Competitor” and my ability to do it… I just went for it. 

My time sucked! Instead of under 5 minutes, I was at 8:28. I realize Fran was designed to be a sprint and coming up on 10 minutes isn’t exactly a “sprint.”  However, it felt much better than my first Fran. It was much more satisfying. Where my first Fran felt easy, this Fran felt hard, doable, but hard. 

Now I’m wondering, where’s the magic sweet spot in the middle of weights vs. time. I’m going to try to find it by staying at 65# and working harder to get my time back down. When Fran comes back around again, I will be ready!

After Fran, I spent a bit of time working on lifts with the real competitor women in my gym. THAT was fun! My weights were great, consistent 115# push presses. I worked on form. I worked on negative pull ups. I am thrilled to be included in this group of very athletic women. Who knows… after a year or more, maybe I’ll actually BE one of them! Lori, the Athlete… HA! Wouldn’t that be something… 

A Week of Winning

Best week yet! Met with my doctor about my latest blood results and after 5 months of crossfit and one month of paleo… I’M NORMAL!!! Everything except for one thing was completely in the normal range, and that one thing was lower and just about normal. 🙂 I’ve gone from knocking on the door of diabetes to not even being in neighborhood. Amazing!!! 

It’s so refreshing to find an Endo who loves Crossfit, encourages Paleo, and isn’t pushing meds, meds, meds! She’s taken me off another med so I’m down to ONE med! Best part… NO MORE SHOTS!!! For the first time in seven years… SEVEN YEARS, I don’t have to give myself a shot every morning. It’s WONDERFUL! 

I celebrated with the Hubs by going out for a Paleo lunch and bought myself a pair of Converse All-Stars at Marshall’s. Yesterday was a good day!

I feel great. I really do. I have energy. I’m not depressed. I’m not a strung out anxious mess trying to run after five kids. Life is pretty darn good these days. Life is GREAT, actually… great! 

There’s more Winning… 

While I was at Marshall’s, I did the unthinkable… decided to try on the next size down jeans while I was still in a good mood, knowing that if they didn’t fit, I was going to be soooooo disappointed and down. I picked two pairs of 18’s, both with a little give in the waist (I’m an Apple shape) and headed to the dressing room. My Hubs was just shaking his head. He’s been down this road before. 

This time, it was different! I came out smiling. They both FIT!!! That means that I’ve now dropped down another size (two total sizes down) and there were no tears, no sadness, just excitement that not only did they fit, they fit comfortably!!! I was half tempted to get a size 16 just to see how far away I am, but I didn’t want to push my luck. 

And I’m still hanging in at 15 pounds lost since I started. Every single person I meet in Crossfit tells me to throw away the scale. I’m kinda thick sometimes, but I’m beginning to think they might be right. I’ve now dropped two jeans sizes, the second without the scale changing one pound! 

I finished the evening by heading down to the basement and pulling out the “saved” clothes… you know the ones… the ones you hope to one day get back into. I was able to “save” three pairs of capri pants (2 size 18 and one size 20), two with the tags still on them. The third is actually a little too loose. lol! Guess I should have gone down there a little sooner. 

Wednesday, at the gym, I noticed something after the workout. I wasn’t dead. There were box jumps, and I’m still at the 12 inch box… and for the first time after a box jump workout, I wasn’t totally wiped out. I think it means I need to start adding plates and working my way up to that 20 inch box. Most of my weights are now “athlete” level, which I find hysterical, but my poor little box jump is kids’ size. Time to get cracking on getting up to the big girl box! 

One final “Winning” this week… doing front squats during today’s workout, I was FINALLY able to do a fingertip grip and get the bar to rest on my body instead of just my hands. It’s a mobility issue that I’ve been working on… and today, it happened!!! Maybe the bar was just the right weight (75#), maybe it’s my new, flatter shoes, maybe it’s my adorable pink custom-made wrist wraps… or maybe all of the above… but for the first time I was able to get the bar in the right spot and oh did it feel good! Suddenly 75# felt more like 55# and it became so much easier. I can’t wait to see if I can make this happen again!!!

I’ve also been drinking green smoothies every day… spinach, kale, bok choy, celery… different greens every day… and some apple and fruit to sweeten it… ginger and lemon to boost my immune system. I do have more energy and I can feel the difference. I bought some protein powder to throw in there as well. 

I still fight against wanting things to be perfect instantaneously (size 12 NOW please!). I still fight against wrecking my healthy eating or sabotaging myself. I still fight to not define myself by the numbers on the scale. I still have to fight to convince myself that I can do Crossfit and that I can lift heavy weights. Staring at the bar before every workout is still anxiety provoking and filled with fear that this time, I won’t be able to do it. My friends believe in me and it really helps me believe in myself. 

It’s been a really good week!!!

There was Running…

Running… my single biggest issue. I come from a family of marathon runners and I cannot run a single mile. Up until a couple of weeks ago, I couldn’t run 200 meters without stopping. As sad as that is to admit, it’s the truth. I still can’t run much more than 200 meters without stopping, but at least I keep going. 

Monday involved 200 meter sprints, five of them with a little weights and a 2 minute rest in between. NIGHTMARE scenario. Not only am I horrible at running, but sprinting??? I can’t even remember the last time I sprinted. I need to stop looking at the WOD before I walk in the door because whenever there is running, my anxiety goes WAY up! 

So Monday, I tried my best. I really did. There was no question about being last, that was a given. It was just a question of finishing with my dignity intact and hoping the lights were still on. Each sprint was slower and slower than the last. Each sprint had a bit more walking in there. As I finished my quick weights and headed out the door for my last sprint (which was really just a slow shuffle at this point), the most amazing thing happened… My Coach and my classmates, who’d all finished already, did the last 200 meters with me! :faint: They really did! I’m getting teary just thinking about it. It’s such a small thing and at the same time, it’s HUGE! It’s what makes me so grateful to be involved with Crossfit and the amazing people with whom I train. I can honestly say it was the single best moment of fitness I have ever experienced in my entire life! 

Today… more running. Eeek!!! The WOD started with a 1/2 mile run. ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? Remember, I’m the chick who care barely make 200 meters. I’m also the chick determined to keep chugging along until there’s no chug left in me. I did it! I walked some of it… but I did it. When I came in the door, my coach said I was on track for a 13-something mile, which is awesome for me! I consider it a great day if I can manage a 15 minute mile, mostly walking. I’m remembering several months ago, before the weather became cold, there was a workout that started with an 800 meter run, and I tanked. I did 400 and came back in to finish it out on the rower. Today, I did the 800 meters and followed it up with a 400 meter and then a 200 meter run/walk…. with some hanging knee raises (my version of toes to bar) and kettlebells in between. I did more running today than I have in years, maybe ever! As I was coming in for my last 200 meters, one of my classmates came out to check on me and finished the last 30 meters with me. That is so far beyond fantastic that there isn’t even a word for it. I finished strong, running that last 30 as hard as I could. 🙂

I can’t tell you that I’m not still afraid of running. I am. I’m more afraid of failing, of not being able to do it… but I keep doing it and my coach and friends keep holding my hand, right there with me. So many things I have done that I never thought I would be able to… 80 burpees in a single workout! OMG!!!… and I’m excited and ready to see what’s next… even if there is running. 🙂

The Frustration!!!

I’m calmer now, but if I would have sat down an hour ago to do this post, it would have been laced with massive doses of profanity. I’m frustrated. I did my Month 5 stats this morning instead of tomorrow because I’m going out to dinner tonight. Date night… Yay! That d*amm scale and my d*amm pair of control pants (the ones I try on every month) have done me in… again! It was UP a pound and my control pants are not the least bit looser. I took pictures but since my computer crashed, I can’t go back and compare them to last month or the month before.

Five months… five months of Crossfit 3x a week… one solid month of no grains (except for one meal and one side dish of fried okra, both while on vacation)… the only thing left in my diet that is not paleo is butter and the occasional 90% dark chocolate. Heck, the only thing I’ve had that even resembles a grain were a few paleo brownies for my birthday. I don’t “paleofy” anything, though I probably will on occasion when I reach my goal size. A girl can’t live forever without a blueberry muffin or a pancake! There was an awful hour of preparing Easter baskets for the kids, and I did eat a small bit of it. It was enough to push my morning glucose to 111 the next morning. 

I’ve been tracking my calories to see if that might be the problem. I’m averaging 2200-2300 a day. After speaking with a coach friend, I’m going to try to stay under 2000 for a while and see if that makes a difference. I’m also going to up my leafy greens, cut out some of the nut butters, and stop buying the 90% dark chocolate except for “that time” every month. (Let’s be honest here… I need SOME chocolate or my family will kill me!) He sent me a nice link about crossfit and calories that I want to go back and read a few more times. 

One of my coaches says I need to add another workout in every week or run 800 meters after every crossfit workout. My gym contract is ending in a month and I’m going to try to talk my very indulgent and loving Hubs into moving to the unlimited plan instead of the 3x a week plan. Until then, I guess I’ll attempt to pathetically walk/run 800 meters after class.

I was looking in the mirror today and I just can’t believe how hard this is! It’s freaking HARD! Surely it’s going to get easier, right??? Jumping 20 inches on a box (which I have not yet done) MUST be easier at 175lbs instead of 250+, right? Pulling 175lbs of body weight up to a pullup MUST be easier than not being able to do it at 250+. I feel like I’m working my arse off, which I’m obviously NOT because my big arse is still very much there… and now I’m realizing that as hard as I think I’m working, I am going to have to work harder to accomplish what I want to accomplish. I want to be healthy. I want to be normal. I want to be able to walk into a store and buy something from the regular clothing section. I want people to look at me and see ME and not a middle-aged, overweight, frumpy woman. Having my Hub’s co-workers think he has a hot wife would be a bonus! 

I’m not giving up. I can’t. I don’t want to throw away all of this dang hard work. I want it to mean something. So I’m only one pants size and 14 pounds smaller… there have been other changes that are pretty darn great. My glucose is basically normal, even after dropping one of my meds. I’m hoping to drop another one in the next couple of weeks. My skin looks better. My hippie hair is looking more hippy-ish these days. And while the waists on my jeans remain the same, my butt is clearly baggier. I can lift 100 MORE POUNDS than I could just a few months ago. That’s HUGE!!! So… being the hot trophy wife my Hubs deserves might take me a lot longer than I thought and the road might be a hell of a lot harder than I ever imagined. I’m still fighting. There will be no white towels today!