Thursday, April 29

Just Move...Do Something

"Action may not always bring happiness:
but there is no happiness without action."

- Benjamin Disraeli

Wow...what a change of mindset between yesterday and today. And all it took were some words of wisdom from a friend and moving my body. Sometimes we need to re-focus and keep moving. This doesn't always mean physically moving.

Moving can also mean, taking the next step or a step towards your goal/s, whether that be directly or indirectly. Moving can also mean mentally taking that step and thinking about what it is you would have yourself do in order to make progress. At some time this will need to be followed up with physical ACTION to help make your plans reality. Thinking about things is good. However, at some stage, getting up off the couch and taking what's in your head and transferring that to your body (moving from intent to action), is necessary if you want to see your plans come to fruition.

So yesterday, I moved my body. I hopped on the train and bus and went for my Home Core Program session with Deanne. And it was such a glorious day, much like today, and while waiting for the bus and train, I soaked up the sun and thanked God that I am fit, healthy and strong.

Today I rejoice at another glorious day of sunshine, and thank God again for my wonderful husband, beautiful daughter and a life full of blessings (thank you Wendy for reminding me), because there are many others who have less than I do, and so, I am thankful for what I have.

I've done my stretches; my house and garden are tranquil and I've enjoyed morning tea on my back patio and listened to the sound of the birds; soaked up the vibrant colours of my pansies and violas; starting re-reading my Paleo book; revised my training schedule, nutrition and 3 monthly goal, to help me re-focus.

I tried to find a photo of someone sitting in contemplation in a beautiful garden, I envisage as what I would like, but there only seem to be pictures of mature age people. Why is it so stereotypical? I found this photo which is similar to what I would like my back patio to look like. Very french! Now I want my Rhododendron (the shrub with the pink flowers) to look like the one in this photo. It looks exactly the same species as mine, right down to the colouring, except mine hasn't grown as big, and doesn't look as beautiful as this one (and mine is at the front entrance).

Okay...better finish up soon. I just wanted to talk about my Home Core program. I'm quietly excited about the exercises that Deanne has given me. I have to do them 3 times per week and they take about half-an-hour. This will be worked in as part of my training schedule, and has been labelled by De as what she calls a work-in (rather than a work-out) and includes walking, pilates, yoga, Tai Chi, Qi Gong, stretching & mobilising. This is how she describes a Work-in...

"The general principle of Work Ins is their gentle, smooth and often rhythmical nature in movement. Whilst they still produce 'pumping' of the body (vital to our health), the intensity is typically low-moderate.As they aid recovery, rebuilding and growth of our body, these gentle activites are suitable for everyone, especially those who are stress laden.

Our bodies function at a highest level only when we maintain homeostasis (bio-balance). So think about balancing our body as driving a car. To keep the car moving straight, we need to balance the right and left. If the car is veering towards the left (stressed out), turning the steering wheel to our left (intense exercise or work out) only makes it worse. To move the car back to the middle of the lane, we need to turn the steering wheel to the right (Tai chi or Work In)."

I will be going back in a couple of weeks just to see how I went with the exercises and to make any adjustments if necessary. After that, I have to record my training schedule, including my core exercises, over a two month period to see if and what changes are happening. Now, I won't kid myself, this is going to take longer than 2 months to improve, but without this core work, I'm just not going to progress physically.

Deanne's assessment was interesting and I took note. I have a sway back (small), which obviously affects posture, but also my hip stability. Muscularly, my traps are a little overdeveloped, so I need to focus on using my mid-back and lats more. My rear deltoids are underdeveloped, in comparison to my front delts, but I'm not too sure how I'm going to tackle that, as I can't think of any Crossfit movement which is typical to working the rear delts, as most of them are large, functional movements. I might have to look at isolated weight exercises to rectify it.

The thing is, unless all my muscles are aligned and functioning properly, I'm just not going to get any stronger, and it's the core muscles which hold it all together and ensure neurologically, everything is activated and firing properly. As Deanne points out, I have alot of muscle strength, but I'm not going to get them all working in unison unless the trunk is strong enough, which will hinder my performance and any chance of getting stronger and fitter in the medium-longer term.

Wednesday, April 28

Wk 17...Hot-Cold-Hot-Cold-Cold---'s the thing...this week I spat the dummy! This was my spill to AW last night...

KW: "I've had enough! I don't want to train - I want to do anything - I want to stay home and not go out - I want to potter around the garden - I want to sit and drink cups of tea, listen to the birds, watch my plants and admire the flowers, and sit and contemplate - I want to just sit and listen to Philomena, play with her and enjoy her - I don't want to talk to anyone (apart from chatting to my neighbours) - Facebook is boring me and it's a waste of my time - I'm not interested so much in blogland at the moment - I could easily hire out some DVD's and sit on the recliner and watch them for a week - I want a break from all the pressure!"

AW: "Where's the pressure coming from?"

KW: "Me!"

So that was my dummy spit! And yes, the pressure is all of my own doing. I've set things up and taken things on for a specific pull myself out of my comfort zone. And this week, I've just had enough of being out of my comfort zone. I am taking this week to do everything I said I wanted to do - which is very little (thanks to some wise words from a friend - she knows who she is).

Last week was crazy leading up to ANZAC weekend. There were alot of firsts for me, and it took alot of my time preparing for my first ANZAC weekend. I volunteered to be part of the Catafalque party, and we practiced all day Saturday and we were tired and sore. We had to be in bed early and up at 1am, at work at 3am and the dawn service was at 5am. My legs turned to jelly as we slow marched out, but I got myself together in time and it all went fairly smoothly from there. As it was, we were told on Saturday that we were the first Reserves catalfalque party to do the honours for our pressure!

After dawn service, it was off for a gunfire breakfast at the mess and then it was off to Brisbane.

Even though we don't show any expression we felt the was wonderful! I have to admit to feeling quite emotional as we were cheered and clapped and everyone waved their Australia flags. So even though it was a big weekend, it was all worth it!

By Sunday night I was over it all, and totally exhausted. My throat was sore and I could feel myself coming down with something. I was in bed by about 8:30pm and I didn't get up until 10:38am the next morning! I was definitely feeling under the weather and had contracted a bad head cold and a slight cough.

And so, I decided I wasn't going to work on Tuesday night. Instead I would rest and try to get better. I was also extremely tired, lethargic and just over it all! Today, I even had to convince myself to go to my session with De for my home core program.

Luckily, I read the reply from a wise friend, which made me feel much better (thankyou) and I decided to put my feelings aside and go. I'm glad I did. It has put me in better spirits and I know what I need to do. I need to rest. It was intimated that I might be experiencing some burnout.

I hadn't really thought about it, but I think my friend is on the money. I have been putting myself under so much pressure the last 18months and pushing myself relentlessly that I think I just need to step back and take the pressure off a little.

I don't want to lose the things I've gained of course, and I need to ensure I still am maintaining a balance and not letting myself off too much, so that I don't slip back into that place of oblivion which took me alot of effort to pull myself out of.

And I know that I've been saying that I need to slow down. But it's easier said than done. I'm still fighting it all the way. However this week, there hasn't been any fight, and that's scary!

Anyway...I'm feeling better today and I'm looking forward to JUST BEING this week. weigh-in was 61.3kgs...those extra carbs over the weekend are definitely the culprit! Nothing more to say...

Thursday, April 22

Wk 16...Transition, Habits of Discomfort, and Seeking Solace...

"Disenchantment, whether it is a minor disappointment or a major shock, is the signal that things are moving into transition in our lives."

- William Throsby Bridges

Weigh-in: 60.6kg Goal Weight: 57kg Amt to Lose: 3.6kg

My husband came up with this great word, I felt summed up what 2010 is for me...Transition.

I thought the quote above by William Throsby Bridges was quite apt, and it hadn't occurred to me that this period was one of disenchantment. However, when I really consider it, I think there's some truth to that.

Life is ever-changing and things never remain the same for any length of time. We go through peaks and troughs. At this time I'm not at the bottom of a trough, I'm somewhere on the way up towards a peak. It's a slow ascent, but it's worthy of my focus.

As I intimated in my last post, I've rescheduled my week to fit in Crossfit, Army PT and Wing Chun with the goal of achieving these activities without injury. Compared to last year, the training volume is not really there, and for good reason.

Initially I was hung up about it all, because my original goal for 2010 was to be VERY LEAN. Well, that's probably not going to happen this year. This year will be a year of transition where I just concentrate on strengthening my body so that it is fully functional and I can put in the hard yards again next year. As it stands, I have to deal with my current issue...core strength and stability, which is affecting my lower back and hip/pelvis stability.

Thanks to Liz for recommending Deanne, who is at this moment devising a home core program for me. I went to see Deanne yesterday for an assessment and we went over a few stretches and exercises. Deanne is a holistic lifestyle coach and fitness consultant who runs a PT and pilates studio in Brisbane. After reading about Liz's hip concerns and her delving into pilates, it got me thinking about what I realised was necessary to help with my current concerns. I was impressed with Deanne's knowledge and like IBO, wanted to know what my goals and aspirations are, in order to help me achieve my aims. I was pleasantly surprised to find quite a few of things we tried were along the same lines as what my physio has given me. I'm eagerly awaiting the exercises to start which I should receive by tomorrow. Next week I will be going back to actually go over them, and do the exercises during our session to consolidate and make any changes or corrections.

Deanne was on the same wavelength, in that I'm looking do the core program as a regular part of my training week, and to maintain my 2 x CF, 1-2 x Wing Chun & Army PT for the remainder of the year, with the idea to review my progress periodically. That means that in spite of what I might think and feel 3 months down the track, I should stick with this schedule, rather than take on any extra sessions. We want to make sure that my body is really ready to take on any extra work physically and be able to sustain that level without injury.

Which brings me to the part of sticking to my schedule where more is less. I don't know what it is. It could be the season coming into winter, but I'm finding too much comfort in slowing down. I'm seeking solace in time with my family and my keenness to get into my garden is forming part of my solace. I'm really not enjoying facebook at the moment and I despise the time that it steals from me. Even blogging has slowed down for me, and I'm not reading alot of blogs at present (sorry guys). Just catching some here and there and when I have time. That's just where I'm at, and it often changes depending on how I feel.

As I said, I'm finding too much comfort in slowing down, which means I have to be ever-vigilant when it comes to keeping moving. The fortunate thing is, I've been so disciplined over a good period of time, that my nutriton and exercise has become such an ingrained habit. I can still put in the ACTION, even when the motivation isn't necessarily there. I just make the plan and execute it, regardless of whether I am motivated or not (different from resting when you're injured or genuinely fatigued).

However, that doesn't mean it's easy. I still do it kicking and screaming sometimes. My head has been in a terrible place at Crossfit since I've been back after my latest hip injury. I was going so well mentally and in a great place physically as well, before the injury. Since then, it's been difficult to go back to Crossfit. I've been experiencing extreme bouts of self-doubt, especially my first session back last Thursday. I've been very emotional and pre-session apprehension has once again returned.

The thing is, regardless of how I'm feeling I'm still putting in the action, however hard I fight it, or whatever I'm telling myself at the time. Even when I get there, before the workout begins, I'm dreading the session and the effort I need to put in. And as always, once I'm into the workout, that's when mentally I begin to pick up and I feel that drive and I push myself. By the end I'm on top of the world and thankful that I turned up! But you know, at the moment, I'm still fighting it, rather than accepting it and letting it flow. I recognise that I've lost confidence again because of injury and I'm very protective of my body. I'm aware of the necessity to ensure my form, above all, is correct, and I need to keep this in mind. It means though that sometimes I feel less worthy because I could have lifted heavier, but deep down I know that this is stupid thinking. It's just ego, and I have to constantly remind myself that this is not a race against anyone.

So I have formed these habits of discomfort for a reason. For me to make progress I have to keep pushing myself, so I've purposely set these goals and put myself in a position to pull myself out of my comfort zone on a continual bases. That's what I love about Crossfit and being in the Army. These two things alone constantly challenge me and put me in a position of extreme doubt and discomfort. And regardless of how hard I fight it, I know that I'm growing and I'm getting better. These are only early days, and I know that there will come a time when the discomfort will have lessened slightly, because I will have developed a higher threshhold for that discomfort. Then I suppose it's time to find something else that's a little more uncomfortable. Somehow, I think that's a long way away.

As far as seeking solace with my family and gardening, I'm really enjoying this time with them, especially Philomena. Sunday I took her up to Mt Tamborine to a coffee shop/gallery/bookstore which I discovered last week called The Secret Garden. The photo on the website is very old and doesn't do it justice. I'll be going back again for coffee for sure, as they have beautiful gardens and a lovely setting on the back verandah overlooking the paddock. From the road, you don't even know what's there.

Anyway, I found out there was a children's book launch there last Sunday, so I took Philomena along. It was brilliant, and they had the paddock out the back all set up for kids, and then they had the book launch and reading by the authors, Mem Fox and Olivia Rawson. The illustrations were on display in the gallery. Philomena loves the book, 'A Giraffe in the Bath' and we had a wonderful time.

It really was an enchanting afternoon, and we traipsed the paddock in search of giraffes in baths, a sheep in the shower, and a zebra in the pumpkin patch, and other wonderful things to capture children's imaginations, as part of a quiz they had set up for the kids. It was like being a child again too, so Philomena wasn't the only one who enjoyed it. It's really times like these with Philomena, that I treasure the most, and that I've been creating more opportunities like these to be with her and get caught up in her imaginary world filled with wonder and delight.

And lastly, my garden. I am dying to get stuck into it and I want to buy some more azaleas and I definitely would like to have some camelia bushes. And in my quest to improve soil quality and have beautiful, healthier plants, I've bought a worm farm! It's just arrived, and I can't wait to get it going. As soon as Philomena gets home this afternoon from daycare, we will be setting it up. She's very excited about the slimy worms! Anyway, I just can't wait until I get my first lot of worm casting and worm wee to put into my garden...hee..hee!

Well...I've really got everything off my chest and I'm feeling much better after sending off an email to one of my most recent mentorees. Sometimes the best medicine for a disenchanted heart is to help another person, and that's when you realise that your life is truly wonderful, and to be thankful for the troughs and well as the peaks.

Have a great week!

Thursday, April 15

Life Balance post 40's....

"I live in that solitude which is painful in youth,
but delicious in the years of maturity."

- Albert Einstein

Lately, I haven't had alot of time to read all the blogs I follow, but of the ones I've been able to fit in, I have noticed a general theme since the start of the year, and that includes my blog. There's been alot of struggle present this year.

Last year, everyone was making huge leaps and bounds in most areas of their lives, even with the challenges presented. But this year, the majority (not everyone) seem to be a little bit perplexed and bewildered as they strive for the next level of progress in their lives.

It seems most of us are trying to find our way back to a place of resoluteness and confidence. Now, I don't think it's something we've necessarily set ourselves up for, i.e. sabotage. I just think that after a year like last year, where everyone seems to have achieved some major milestones in their lives, that we're finding it hard this year to live up to those achievements, and to approach it with the same zest and energy that was so abundant last year.

From what I can gather, the solutions we applied previously are just not working for us, and we're having to think about how we approach this years' challenges in a whole different way in order to move forward again.

Something which becomes more prevalent in the 40's, is the occurrence of injury. To my surprise, I found I wasn't the only one experiencing physical injury. There are alot of us out there who have chronic injuries, and we're supposedly the 'fit and healthy' ones of our age group.

I've been in denial about turning 40 and how it has affected me physically. I'm only now starting to accept the fact I am indeed getting older and that my body just doesn't respond in the same way it did 10 years ago. It's not an excuse to slow down - it's a fact. I found this interesting article on Age-Related Response to Injury , and what really hit home with me was not so much the physical response we have, but the mental and psychological response. Dealing with the reality of what is happening to your body I think is sometimes harder than the injury or physical state itself.

It's important to realise that how you approach this stage of your life mentally and psychologically, is more imperative, than the physical outcomes, and is the bridge or link to your present and future life-balance evolution.

So that's what I've been doing alot of thinking about lately, especially since I've had a few setbacks this year especially, which haven't seen me progress much in the way of fitness.

Tom Gerace's ('The Things Worth Believing in') comment on one of my recent posts got me thinking about this as well. His post on Operational Longevity, came as a bit of surprise actually (because I thought Tom was and he talks about balancing his fitness training with his work as a police officer in the States. His bio, especially the first paragraph really expresses how I'm playing out this stage in my life....

"I have found that at a point in ones life, a person starts to define themselves between two categories; “who they are” and “what they were”.

Who am I? I am a; husband, father, police lieutenant, FBINA graduate, fitness buff, martial artist, hunter, reader, gun nut, conservative, internet surfer.

I was once a; soldier, SWAT operator, rock climber, skydiver and overall adrenaline junkie. As I age I am starting to find that I enjoy talking about some of these topics more than I enjoy doing them anymore. Life has a funny way of sorting out your priorities that way."

I think for those of us who are in our 40's, and have had a fairly physical life, whether that be work or sport, or both, we all reach this crux. How we deal with it, determines whether we will continue to make progress in all areas of our lives (including the physical - more importantly for some of us) and gain enjoyment and fulfilment, or whether we will stagnate and/or regress in the next phase of our lives, and leave ourselves wondering what happened and why.

I believe it's a necessary part of our personal evolution that we define who we are so we can embrace where we are going.

Which leads me to where I am now. a year of redefining. My original goals have definitely changed since the start of the year. If I look at things honestly, I know that this year won't be a year of great achievements. And I'm okay with this. The remainder of this year will be about finding my way again, training-wise and reaching a happy medium (in both fitness, home and work life) where I'm 'just training' and 'maintaining' a state of injury-free health and fitness on a consistent basis. Needless to say, I won't be trying to break any great records and I won't be busting my arse worrying about what I can't do.

It's about closing or briding the gaps or weaknesses that I'm currently experiencing...physically, mentally, psychologically, so that next year I can propel myself forward. Hopefully, once I've reached a place where I have built up a solid base, working on the basic foundations, I can resume my pursuit of being the fittest and strongest I can be. I'm hoping for exponential growth once I can begin this part of my journey next year.

I propose to do that concentrating on my present goal of training in Crossfit 2 x pw; Wing Chun 1 x pw; Army PT without injury. Meanwhile, after much thought, I've decided I really need to focus on my core strength and stability. Without this being top notch, I won't be able to make much progress in relation to hip/pelvis stability and glute strength. Core strength, i.e. strength and response of my deeper abdominals and back muscles is the glue that binds everything together. It's an area which keeps falling down. I think that if I can gain true core strength, this will enable me to make gains in both glute strength and maintaining hip and pelvis stability. I've already sought help for this and have an appointment next week to look at putting together a core strength program, relevant to where I am right now, which takes into account my muscle imbalances/weaknesses and hip injury, and aligns with my training genre.

I really think that this is the key to me making real and sustained progress. At the moment, it takes a long time to recover, especially in Crossfit, and it's because I can't seem to get any consistency. Without consistency, it doesn't enable my body the required time needed for adaptation, in order for me to increase my volume or intensity, and hence improve my overall fitness and/or performance.

So this year I accept that I will have my struggles, and take two steps forward and one step back - sometimes three steps back. I will feel my way through this plateau, searching for sustainable solutions with new thinking and processes. And by doing this I hope to reach a place where I am feeling once again strong and confident.

Of course, that doesn't mean than I am unhappy. I am happy and content in my struggles, so long as I am putting in ACTION on a continual basis, because only then I know that I will be better than I was yesterday.

And about solitude...strange thing is, I am happier now giving myself more time, because it allows me to slow down and seek that solitude I long for. I am finding I am more able to be in the present, whether that means pushing myself physically in training, or playing all the other roles in my life. And that's a nice place to be. It's all about the journey, and I see this as just another part of it.

Tuesday, April 13

Wk 15...So Much to Do - So Little Time

Well the last two weeks have been just crazy! I've never organised a birthday party before, and I tell you, it's quite stressful! I hate rushing around. But that's been the last two weeks, as there are five family birthdays during and around Easter time.

The photo is little Miss Phil blowing out candles on her Tinkerbell birthday cake (which is my creation...hee..hee..with lots of advice from my sister Carol...thanks chicky!). We had her 4th birthday party on Saturday, and the kids had a great time. Only a handful of her little friends, but that's all I wanted - something small. It doesn't really take much to please little children...balloons, streamers, cake and friends...that's all it takes to make them happy.

So it was great to be back to a normal routine as of yesterday. This week is the first week I'm trying out my new schedule which will hopefully see less injury and being able to maintain my training. It's only Tuesday, but I'm feeling much better already, not only about scheduling Crossfit on Monday night instead of Tuesday, but the fact that it leaves more time during the day to get housework in order and my admin and internet stuff. So I'm already quite organised.

Weigh-in this morning was 60.9kg, so no change in weight.

I'm afraid the Zone diet went out the window on Saturday and Sunday. I was so damned busy cooking and organising for Phil's birthday, that I didn't have time to prepare my own lunch, so I ended up eating what I had prepared. Luckily the food was pretty healthy and very little junk, apart from Phil's birthday cake. Sunday was the family birthday BBQ. It started off well with salad and some lamb, but ended a bit disastrously with me taking home leftovers and consuming them for dinner as well.

Oh well...back on track again since Monday. BTW...up until Saturday my nutrition was 100%! It's the first time since starting the zone diet, so I was happy with that. Apart from Saturday and Sunday, my resolve has been excellent! I'm starting to feel more resolute regarding my nutrition and my plans. Now let's see if I can hold out a month before a free meal.

Though I'm not too sure how the Gunfire Breakfast on ANZAC day will go. I've never been to one, but all I imagine is fatty bacon, sausages and stuff like! I will just have to go with the's sounding disastrous already as I'm thinking about it and writing this at the same time!

I'm very excited about ANZAC DAY! We will be doing the service at Enoggera Army base on the ANZAC DAY, and probably other ceremonies at various RSL's around Brisbane. It's funny, but this is something I've always wanted to do. Don't really know why, but it will definitely be a proud day for me.

And lastly...sorry I haven't replied to the comments on the last post. It's just been so crazy - no time to scratch myself. Will reply soon, and the comments have given me some food for thought, so will get back to you. Thanks as always. I always love reading comments and what you have to say. :)

Tuesday, April 6

Wk 14...Mid-Life Crisis & Renewing ACTION!

Weigh-in: 60.9kg.... Renewed Goal: 57kg.... Amount to Lose: 3.9kg

The amount to lose doesn't sound like alot, and in truth it isn't. But it's like pulling teeth. And when you're maintaining (whatever that is), those few extra kilos can be the difference to falling back into a weight-gain spiral.

To some, this may seem pedantic, but when you think of how you gained weight in the first instant, it was a gradual process. One day your weight was quite healthy and the next, be it, months or years on, it wasn't. It seemed to happen overnight, but in reality, that's how it all started. A few extra kilos...pffffft...nothing to worry about! But then it becomes 5 extra kg's...then 10kgs...and then...and then...

It's when we become complacent and lose sight of what it was like to feel overweight, and why we don't want to go back there, that it becomes dangerous. We can slip back into that routine of deceiving ourselves and saying that this is okay...a few extra pounds won't hurt.

We need to...I need to remind myself of how I felt at my best (body image-wise). And I've been going back to that saying..."Nothing feels better than being in shape feels". I think I can understand a little of how it feels for body builders who compete. The work you put in to get your body into such an amazing state and then seeing the fantastic you must feel! You just want to capture that feeling and never let it go, because you feel just AWESOME! It's not just about the end result, but how you felt on the journey toward that point. It's such a poweful feeling, being disciplined and in control.

So even though I'm about 3kgs over my happy weight (58kg), I really feel yuck! I can start to feel that extra flab around the torso and my hips and thighs, and I really don't like it. For those who have done (body building) comps, even though I haven't actually done one myself, I think you know what I mean. For those who have never aspired to that or have never had the goal of being fit and lean, just maybe healthy, you probably think I'm crazy and just a tad anal.

But you know, I had an AHA! moment yesterday.

I say I'm in denial about getting older, and I figured out that it's actually Mid-Life Crisis. I was reading an article in yesterday's Sunday Mail in Agenda, about guys in the 30's - mid-late 40's who instead of buying sports cars and hitching up with young girls, are getting into triathlons and all sorts of adventure sports, as a way of recapturing their youth.

And I said to AW...that's me! That's what this is all about. And I was quite happy about that, because I thought, what better way to have a mid-life crisis by recapturing your youth by pursuing increased health and fitness. Because after all, this is my last hoorah, and there will come a time when my skin will be so wrinkly, so I want to enjoy this period of life while I can.

I mean, the weight or numbers are just a marker. You use the numbers as a guide to ensure that things aren't spiralling out of control. I no longer stress about the numbers, because I've learnt how to read them and use them to my advantage. Numbers tell a story and there are lessons to learn if we take note.

For example...if my weight balloons in one week it's usually because I've had a heavy carb week and we all know that water attaches to carbs, so it will be inevitable that this is going to happen. I've also learnt that I'm only ever 2 weeks away from stabilising my weight if I fall off the wagon, and that's all it takes to turn any bad habits around that I've slipped back into.

So anyway...I've looked back at the first 3 months of the year. Sure, it's been challenging and I've had a few hiccups along the way. I've learnt that my body just cannot sustain over the long term, the pounding that I've been giving it, due to my hip. I've learnt that I can't sustain a regimen of training hard 6 days per week any longer. However, I can train just as hard, but at shorter durations. And this way I can give my body the recovery-time it needs.

In the last month I've learnt that training in Crossfit on Tuesday's and then lining up for more physical punishment for Army PT is helping me come undone, and I'm continually injuring myself, which does not enable any consistency in my training. My muscles are just too fatigued to ensure enough stability to handle more work on the same day, so as of this week I'm trialling a new training schedule to ensure I'm not setting myself up for continual injury.

I will be changing my week around to make sure I'm giving myself enough recovery time.

Therefore, my present goal is to be able to train 2x pw in Crossfit; 1-2 times pw martial arts and my army PT on Tuesday nights, without recurring injury. And I want to do this for one month consistently! Once I can get to that stage, and I'm happy with my progress and it's working, then...and only then...will I begin to increase volume and intensity.

Meanwhile, I really do have to get my nutrition in order. NO EXTRAS! And I think at this stage only ONE FREE MEAL per month. As I write this, I'm thinking about a double whammy coming up this weekend...Phil's birthday party and combined family birthday party on Sunday! I've done this before, I can do it again! Grrrrrr....

I know just by not have any extras, this alone will see me drop a little weight.

Okay...don't wish me luck...WISH ME RESOLVE!!!

SEXY BITCH mode is being resurrected as of TODAY!

Friday, April 2

Change: Are you Taking Responsibility?

"When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves."

- Victor Frankl

When I orginally accepted the offer to become a Personal Success Mentor for Ideal Bodies Online, I thought it would a wonderful opportunity to help give back. What I've found true has been the opposite - that I'm getting much more than what I give.

How does this happen? In fact, I've often heard this said by people (living and passed) who have given alot of their own time and selves to helping others in a big way. People like Fred Hollows or Mother Theresa who had given of themselves in their lifetimes, tirelessly, and always with a spirit of gratitude for the work they had done. I always wondered how that worked. And I always thought that they just said those things, because they were maybe too humble or embarrassed to take credit for the selfless work they did.

But you know, I think I get it now.

In my endeavour to help others in the fat loss journey, I've had to constantly re-evaluate my own (journey). Inadvertently, I've been taking stock of my own life and in the process I'm having to face my own challenges with the same attitude that I purport to encourage. To remain relevant and to find the energy and passion to inspire, one has to ensure that what he preaches, he must practice.

"The disconnect between what we say and what we do is not merely a measure of hyposcrisy, since we usually believe our statements of good intent. We simply pay too much attention to our words - ours and others' - and not enough to the actions that really define us."

- Gordon Livingstone

Each time I take on a new client, I never know what is in store. Different people from different backgrounds wanting the same or similar outcomes. TO LOSE WEIGHT. That's it in a nutshell really. However, it's never as simplistic as it sounds.But what is it that they are really wanting? It's not to lose weight.

I believe that wanting to lose weight is just a by-product of the DESIRE TO CHANGE. By losing weight, we believe that our lives will be forever changed. And for some, it is. But in the short time that I've being doing this, I've come to realise that the weight loss issue is more about the person we imagine ourselves to be on the inside (and more apparent - on the outside).

We have this perception of what we should really be like and who we really are, and more often that not, it isn't the person we see in the mirror. Our perception of who think we really are, is what drives us to change. And it's our level of ardent desire to be that person and everything that we envisage that goes with it as a total package, which will see us succeed or not. It's whether we want it bad enough and whether we can continue to visualise the possibility of becoming that person, as to whether we will persevere, regardless of the time it will take to reach that goal.

However, the first step for success, and one which I believe is often overlooked, is our ability to take responsibility for getting ourselves to that dark place in the first place. The reasons can be varied and are often complex. Our ability to first of all admit, that regardless of what has happened in our lives, that at some stage we gave our control over to someone else or something else, and then to realise that we can gain back control, is the first step to making true and lasting change.

Part of the journey then becomes about unravelling. That baggage we've accumulated along the way, are the outdated habits and thought patterns which no longer serve us in our quest to become that person we so ardently desire to be. And in that unravelling, we have to deal with painful feelings and emotions.

The pain and anguish revealed by clients often saddens me and brings me to tears some days, and I'm once again forced to be grateful for having taken the journey they aspire to take. To have reached that place they so ardently desire reminds me to be grateful, and that my challenges pale in significance to their pain. It gives me reason to re-focus on my own journey and to take my place at the front, so I can continue to lead. I forget that however insignificant I feel my achievements are in comparison to others, that there are just as many, who aspire to achieve what I have right now.

"When we think about loss of freedom, we seldom focus on the ways in which we voluntarily impose constraints upon our lives. Everything we are afraid to try, all our unfulfilled dreams, constitute a limitation on what we are and could become. Usually it is fear and its close cousin, anxiety, that keep us from doing those things that would make us happy. So much of our lives consists of broken promises to ourselves. The things we long to do - educate oursleves, become successful in our work, fall in love - are goals shared by all. Nor are the means to achieve these things obscure. And yet we often do not do what is necessary to become the people we want to be."

- Gordon Livingstone

So, if you're reading this and you want to make a change or two in your life, I would invite you to look deep within yourself and first of all take responsibility for where you are right now.

Be brave...and be willing to change.

If you can't take the first step on your own, then seek help and the right support to help you unravel and become the person you want to be. Don't waste any more time. Life is too short and precious.
And don't stop...until...

*N.B. Quotes by Gordon Livingston, M.D. are from his book, 'Too Soon Old, Too Late Smart'. Thanks to Andrew for lending me his book (which I gave him as a birthday gift, and should have read beforehand... :P).


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