Picture that surprised me.

Intellectually, I understand the physical changes are inevitable with a large weight loss, but this side by side comparison actually blew me away.  

Summer before and after

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Change

I haven’t posted in awhile, but that doesn’t mean that I’ve given up.  But life has been hectic with a lot going on, especially within myself and that hasn’t been easy.  Sadly, though, the hardest part of that has been seeing others’ reactions to my changes.

One of the many things that has surprised me about this journey has been how it has changed the inner me as well as the outer me.  Yes, I expected and looked forward to the physical changes, but I wasn’t expecting my personality and confidence to be changed so much.  Even more surprising is how certain people around me seem to be threatened by those changes and seem to feel the need to attack me because of it.

My new confidence in myself and growing social life as a result has brought me a new circle of friends.  In my pre-weight loss days, I was pretty much a hermit who didn’t go out of my way to meet people and kept to a very small circle of friends.  Even those friends I had, I struggled with feeling like I was “bothering” them if I picked up the phone to call them, so social get togethers were always at their invitation only.  Some of those people (including family members) began to call less and become passive aggressive when I became public with my journey and celebrating the big and small milestones.  No doubt, those are the people who would never follow this blog.  When I talked with friends about some of these strange reactions that I thought maybe I was taking too personally, and I was told repeatedly that these people were jealous and I dismissed that.  I understand jealousy when it comes to kids and even teens, but grown women, I mistakenly thought it appears, would have the maturity to be able to celebrate the success of others without being threatened by it.  Even after being told repeatedly that jealousy was the root of this, I didn’t want to believe it because to me, it just felt wrong.  I have said all along that I am not special, I don’t have “tricks” and this weight loss journey truly is something that anyone can do if they want to.  I still believe that.

Not sure I am making as much sense blogging this as it makes in my head.  But I will try to explain.  There are certain people in my life who decided to publicly shame me after some silly pictures of my socializing appeared on my social networking page.  Silly pictures of a camping trip with a woman friend who brought along a massager and we made jokes about it as well as talked about drinking wine and again, posted silly pictures with wine.  After those pictures were copied and pasted on family members pages with very negative comments about me, I learned that behind the scenes, those 2 people and some former friends (some of whom I had actually pulled back from the friendship because of gossiping issues in recent years) had been burning up text and phone lines with all kinds of accusations about me.  Apparently, I must be a lesbian because I’m hanging out with a very social woman.  Apparently, I also have a drinking problem because I posted about alcohol while on a camping trip.  Hmm.  

Thankfully, another friend of mine who was sucked into this drama chose to be mature enough to talk to me about it.  Again, she pointed out jealousy, including some of these people perhaps feeling like I had abandoned them as friends in keeping busy with a new circle of friends.  Typing this out sounds so immature!!

I will admit that this new found confidence and socializing has opened some doors for me that have been questionable, even to me.  But ultimately, it’s turning out to be a potential opportunity for more growth in my marriage and family that I never thought would happen.  In fact, part of the reason I started taking care of myself was because I had spent so many years taking care (and taking over) other people’s issues and problems until it consumed me to the point I realized I had neglected myself for too long.  

I believe that change is inevitable, and should be embraced.  I am saddened that change causes so much anxiety in some people that their response is to be vindictive rather than helpful.  Judgments are made and rumors are spread rather than questions being asked and clarification made.  This makes me very sad and tells me that bigger changes need to be made in who I keep in my life and who I don’t.  But the strength I have earned n this journey is giving the strength to do it, and for that, I’m grateful.

Size 14! A Birthday and Another New Experience!

I haven’t posted for a few weeks since the 5K, but life has been moving forward.  I’ve been continuing my nutrition and exercise for the most part.  I don’t know why, otherwise busy life events, but I haven’t kept up with my couch to 5K training but I’m still doing all of my usual Zumba classes, weight training/toning class and yoga/pilates fusion class.  Nutrition has been pretty good, with the exception of a few days I had “girls’ nights” with a friend plus my birthday dinner out.  My weight is mostly staying the same, but people keep commenting that I must be losing (even people I don’t know well!) which has been great.

For my birthday, my husband gave me a gift card for a clothing store I only recently started shopping at so I went shopping for some new work clothes and was excited to discover that I was able to buy 2 dresses and a skirt in size 14.  I honestly can’t wrap my head around that number so it was exciting.  The next day, I decided to go shopping for some new underwear and that was a new experience too!  I actually walked into a real lingerie store, and didn’t get any strange looks.  Bought myself 7 pairs of new underwear and got them home and was actually surprised that they fit.  I don’t know if anyone out there understands my joy, but it was huge for me!

So, it’s been a great couple of weeks.  Now I just have to kick my own butt as far as getting back to the running training.

Mission Accomplished! My First 5K!

I couldn’t be more proud of myself for reaching this goal.

Some thoughts:

My biggest fear was coming in last.  Yes, I know that someone has to be last, but I have worked my butt off over the past 2 years, and while a 5K may not be a huge deal for a lot of people, for me it was the equivalent of climbing Mt. Everest.  I knew that everyone else in the race wouldn’t know my “story”, that at one time I weighed in at almost 340 lbs.   I not only wasn’t last, but out of about 60-70 people total, there were exactly 12 people who crossed the finish line after me.  So yes, I was near the back, but I don’t care.  I DID it, and I am proud.

My friend took these pictures for me.  🙂

Trying to get an app on my phone to record the route.  Nerves obviously got the better of me, as I didn't do it correctly.

Trying to get an app on my phone to record the route. Nerves obviously got the better of me, as I didn’t do it correctly.

I look scared...

I look scared…

First 5k4 First 5k5 First 5k6

The charity the run was supporting.

The charity the run was supporting.

Pre-run pep talk.

Pre-run pep talk.

Trying to blend in with the athletes...

Trying to blend in with the athletes…

Group warm up.

Group warm up.

And we're off!

And we’re off!

First 5k15

I knew there was at least one person behind me.  Found out afterwards there were 12.  So my biggest fear was averted.

I knew there was at least one person behind me. Found out afterwards there were 12. So my biggest fear was averted.

First 5k19

I thought I would cry from the emotional aspect of how big this was for me, but I didn't.  My time was 43:29.

I thought I would cry from the emotional aspect of how big this was for me, but I didn’t. My time was 43:29.

Holy crap, I’m scared…

My plan was to do my first 5K in May.  I am registered for one on May 31st.  But yesterday I found out about one literally a block away from my house in 2 days and my husband talked me into giving it a shot.  So today, not giving myself much of a chance to think about it too much, I registered.  EEK!!  

Check back on Saturday for a new post.  

Good week for the most part!

This has been a great week as far as pushing my fitness goals forward.  My last blog was about my first public/daylight run/walk which was a huge step, but it was also a failed Week 4, Run 1 in my training program which jumped me from 3 minute intervals of running to 5.  I wasn’t sure I was ready, but a few days ago, I felt strong enough to try again, but this time at the gym on a treadmill.  And I did it!

When I do the training runs, I also don’t stop when the training stops.  I do a full 5K every time so I can keep tabs on my time.  So that successful Week 4, run 1 had me running a full 5 minutes MORE than in any other attempt.  Two 5 minute intervals, two 3 minute ones and four 2 minute ones.

Then tonight, worrying that it was a fluke that I did that one, I went again to the gym fully prepared to not succeed but still hoping to, and not only did I do it, but I added one more minute of running for a total of 25 minutes running and 25 minutes of walking including the warm up and cool down.  I got to 5K at 42:30 which I’m very happy with.

Then to top it off, when I got to the gym, I was waiting at the front desk to sign in when a lady I’ve seen at Zumba before but never spoke to came up and started talking to me.  She wanted to tell me that she is so impressed with my progress and wanted to tell me that my hard work is really paying off.  Made my night.

Now all of this is balanced out with some bad news I got from my sister tonight.  She had a sore neck for a few days and was tempted to ignore it but ended up going in.  Turns out she has a massive blood clot in her neck, likely due to the chemo.  So please keep her in your thoughts and prayers while it gets slowly dissolved.  She didn’t need this…she is dealing with enough with the cancer and chemo.  😦

Today’s run/walk outside. In daylight. In public. Big step.

Really debated on bailing on today’s planned run/walk as I knew I was going to take it outside in daylight for the first time.  But I did it.  The good news is that I did a total of about 6.5 KM and survived running in public which was such a scary thing for me.  I did it at a trail that runs along a local river and while it was cold, it was beautiful.

The bad news is that probably because of a few too many glasses of wine last night with a girlfriend, plus the cold air (it was about 3 degrees Celsius) making it more difficult I couldn’t do the next level in the training program which included two sessions of 5 minute runs.  I had to stop and walk during each of them for awhile.  And coming back walking the 2nd half of the workout, I was heading right into the wind which was brutal.

But, I did it and I’m happy about that.  🙂  Progress, not perfection.

Hubby snapped this picture of me in my new running duds when I got home.  Blurry, but that’s ok.

Image

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