Tuesday, September 30, 2008


I've been avoiding the Fit Blogs for the last week or so, I just felt like I didn't belong - I'd hurt my back so no training to talk about, and I was emotionally eating and ashamed to admit it to everyone out there in the Fitosphere.

I'm glad I'm checking back in now, even though I'm still stiff and sore, at least I'm doing something, and I feel a bit more like myself again.
I've decided to stop being so hard on myself - mentally and physically. I'm going to draw up new goals, and give myself realistic deadlines (yes, these will be SMART goals! :o).
And I'm going to be stalking all of you out there, cos I'm gonna be drawing support from you! :o)

Monday, September 29, 2008


Ok, somehow my Intuitive Eating plan became the Eat what I Want To plan.... And now I'm up a couple of lbs... D'oh... It's been a depressing few days since I hurt my back again. I felt like I was falling back into a familiar role of the injured victim, and comfort eating really didn't help.
I went for a short run this morning, just 2.5 miles, and it felt tough. I know that this is more mental than physical though, so I'm going to go again tomorrow morning and push for the 3 miles this time. I just want my old exercise routine back... :o(
I have this image in my head of who I want to be, and reality is just not matching up at the moment. Injuries don't help because they just create more questions.
Sorry, I know this post is a bit all over the place, but that's kind of reflective of my mindset... Things are a bit foggy at the moment... I feel a bit lost...

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Intuitive Eating

I think I may be far too aware of the nutritive content of food. I admit I can be a bit scornful of people who claim they're trying to eat healthily yet clearly show their ignorance of what they're actually consuming, but sometimes ignorance really is bliss. As part of my Normal Eating campaign I'm trying to relax on calorie-counting and food diaries and just eat intuitively. Yes, that's right, eat what I feel like. But after years of telling myself "I don't feel hungry" or "I don't want chocolate" etc., it's kind of hard to turn those sensors back on.

Monday, September 22, 2008

On the road again...

I'm finally out of victim/injured mode. I reluctantly went for a gentle jog this morning. I say 'reluctantly' because it felt strange to not be pushing myself to achieve a good time, I really didn't feel motivated to get all my running gear on for no apparent benefit. It's typical of me that I can never just enjoy the exercise for its own sake, there always has to be a competitive motivation behind it. I'm glad I went, even if my time was so shockingly bad I was embarrassed to see it on my stopwatch. It was a lovely morning, really crisp and fresh, with a beautiful sunrise, and I think I even heard the birds and other country wildlife in between Rihanna and Britney pumping on my iPod... :o)
I've decided to take a break from my online Food Diary. I want to eat naturally and normally, I need to re-train my body to identify hunger and to meet those needs healthily and appropriately. I've also decided to withdraw my entry from the Taekwon-Do World Cup next month. That was a hard decision to make, based on numerous physical and financial factors, but in the end it just came down to the fact that I'm not motivated enough to be competing at that level right now. I'm still sitting at 60kg, 2kg above my competition weight of -58kg, and though I know I could easily lose that weight under pressure of a weigh-in, I really don't want to put myself through that right now. I've been making good developments towards normal eating, and I want to keep working on that.
I'm still going to run the Ladies Charity 7km race; partly because it is for a good cause, and partly because I'm enjoying this new-found running ability I seem to have developed from somewhere. I think it would be a shame to let that go unnoticed. I may as well see how I fare in a mildly competitive atmosphere.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bookshelves, Baking & Blogging

Ok... even I admit that I've taken the alliteration too far with that title, I'm sorry!! :o) But I did it... The 3 things I would do in my efforts to Be Present this weekend - I put together the bookshelves (ahem, with the help of my Coach!), I baked Oatmeal Cookies today with my niece, and now I'm blogging. Check, check, check. :o)

It hasn't been an easy weekend though; I still haven't done any training and I'm really feeling the depriving effects of endorphin withdrawals. I think I've rested my back enough; I'm gonna go for a short run tomorrow, gotta get myself out of this funk.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Slippery Slope...

I can feel that craving sensation... the one that makes me want food but that isn't ever satisfied... I try a variety of tastes - sweet, salty, etc., but it's still not hitting the spot. I even try being really naughty and indulging in increasing levels of "banned" foods until I'm eating large pieces of chocolate, but still the craving remains... Thankfully my common sense prevails and I'm prevented from outright bingeing, but I definitely feel like I've eaten too much, and the guilt is starting to set in, causing conflict between the two opposing sides of my mind.
I wish I could be normal. I wish food was normal for me. I'd love to be one of those people who say "Dessert? No thanks, I'm full" or "Biscuit? Just the one, thanks." I think the last time I genuinely ate without worrying about the consequences was about 10 years ago, when I was 15/16. The last time I was happy with my body, genuinely happy, was over 2 years ago, almost 3 actually, when I was competing at -52kg, and was keeping my body at a lean 54kg most of the time.
I had always been around 55kg, but I had never been so lean before. I loved the hint of a 4-pack on my stomach, the gentle curve of a bicep forming on my arms, and most of all - my thighs were in proportion! woohoo! I was a UK size 8, and totally proud of it. Suddenly clothes fit me perfectly! After years of trying on jeans and feeling disheartened when they would barely pull over my thighs, only to hang loose around my narrow waist - jeans now fit me. It was a momentous occasion. I was officially slim.
I competed at that weight for over 2 years, sticking to 54kg or thereabouts, then dropping the last 2 kg in the weeks before the competition. I wasn't much of a runner back then, in fact before last month just mentioning "jogging" would cause me to break out in a sweat. So I preferred to dehydrate and starve the weight out in the last few days. This involved long periods of fasting, whilst still training hard for the tournament, and finally cutting out all fluids for a certain amount of time preceding the weigh-in. And sometimes I got that wrong. It was a semi-public event, with at least your team-mates, if not other teams as well, watching as you stripped down to your underwear and sports bra and stepped onto a digital scales. The sheer humiliation of being over-weight, (even if only by 100g -there was NO allowances), was enough incentive to not have that gulp of water even when your mouth was parched with thirst.
So sometimes I'd stop taking in food/fluids a little earlier... without telling my Coach...until I went a little too far, not eating for nearly 5 days... and not drinking any fluids for nearly 3... I'm not even going to get into how stupid that was. I weighed in almost a full kilo under for that event. Almost of full kilo of water missing from my body that I sorely needed. That was the first time I'd ever taken my top off in front of a room of guys and heard "eewww........" It wasn't pretty. I actually did ok in the competition though... if you don't count getting a concussion in the semi-final after almost falling onto an opponent's right hook. My body, and brain, was exhausted. That was the last time I competed at that weight.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

My First Race!

I am officially entered into a 7km(4.3mile) Road Race taking place on the 5th October. And I'm looking forward to it. These are words I never ever thought that I would be typing. ME, enjoy running, and voluntarily submitting myself to be compared against other runners, thus claiming to have some sort of right to be there!
Perhaps I'm getting a bit ahead of myself here, considering that I just left the Physio about 4 hours ago, but I'm sure that little niggling injury will be cleared up in a day or two. I'm hoping that having a deadline like this race will help to keep me focused through this bad patch, and give me something to aim towards for the next few weeks. As if the Taekwon-Do World Cup wasn't enough... :o)

Oh what a beautiful morning!!!

Don't worry, I'm not going to burst into song! But it really is a bee-yoo-tifull morning! The sun is shining, giving us a total of 2 days of Summer this year! :o) AND, I am mobile again! Physio sorted me out first thing this morning and I practically skipped to work after the magic of his healing hands. Unfortunately I'm also under his orders to NOT train for the next 36-48hours, AND I have to wear...oh god I hate to say this.... flat shoes...*gulp* I love my heels, in fact I looooove my heels. I like being 4 inches taller than my natural 5'6" frame. But I also like the feeling of professionalism I get from wearing them; I like wearing skirts, and dresses and generally feeling well-groomed at work. When I wear flat shoes I feel like I'm in my pyjamas! I can do this though. I can not train, and wear flat shoes, for 2 days. I'll deal with this like it's another challenge. Just 2 short days. No problem. But I won't enjoy it! :o)
This was my first time seeing this Physio, and he was really good, but it had been a while since I'd shown anyone new my body in any way. Thankfully I didn't have to undress at all, I was dreading that part. With all my worry and fear about people seeing and feeling my new 'chub' I had kind of forgotten that I have a bit more muscle than the average Irish girl. (I've been thinking a lot about the test of "Average" lately, check out the discussions on Mizfit the other day.) Anyway, he started working some of the tension in my legs and his jaw dropped, I was mortified, thinking he was disgusted by how big and squidgy my thighs had gotten, but instead he just laughed and said in the way that only an Irish medical professional can: "Jaysus your quads are rock hard, and your calves too, sure you're all muscle girl!!" I couldn't stop laughing, partly out of relief and partly out of pride, it was nice to be reminded that despite my recent weight gain, I am strong and fit, and maybe even above average... :o)

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Sun is Shining!

Nope, I'm not making it up, the Sun is actually out in Ireland!! woohoo!! And I got to leave work early on account of my tense back becoming cripplingly painful as the day went on. So I get to blog from the comfort of my couch, looking out at the sunshine reflected on the lake near my home.

I am definitely a lot more cheered up since this morning, but worried now that this temporary disability is going to play havoc with my workout/diet regime. I was doing so well, but I'm very much aware of how my willpower dissipates the instant I hit a hurdle like this. It doesn't help that everyone assures me that I'm "tiny" and that I "don't need to lose any weight", and insist on feeding me up. I appreciate their concern and I know that a lot of that is to do with my unintentionally causing them to feel uncomfortable with their own weight, but this actually about Me! Not them! I am not comfortable in my body, and I want to be lean. I train so hard, and I just want a body that reflects that. I just wish I could do this in a healthy way. I always put it off until too close to a TKD competition and then it's extreme weight loss methods, excessive exercise and absolutely NO junk food until after the event... then the post-deprivation binge starts the cycle all over again. I just want to eat normally. I just want to train hard and see, as well as feel, the effects.


I am not in a good mood this morning!!!!! I went to TKD training last night and discovered as we were warming up that the crazy combination of strength exercises we had done 24 hours before had caused my lower back to seize up in a ball of tension. I was so annoyed, if I'm not going to be able to train properly then I'd rather be at home with a cup of tea, thanks very much! Making half-hearted attempts at performing kicks, then repeatedly contorting my body in an attempt to alleviate pain is not my idea of fun. I went to bed last night with a hot water bottle, reassuring myself that my run this morning would make up for that thwarted endorphin rush. Unfortunately I woke up a bit too early.. which meant that when I drifted back off to sleep I slept a bit too long, finally looking at the clock at 7.20am. I could have gotten up and gone for a short run but that would have felt frustrating, I would have wanted to push for more, but then been late for work. Plus I do have TKD training this evening, and I could always go to the gym after work if I wanted to fit in another session... I just had too many options running through my head and that apparently is not the best time for me to be making decisions! So instead I decided to take advantage of this enforced break, sleep on a teeny bit longer, and come into work early to start my day afresh. You know what they say about the best intentions... Well I don't know what time warp I'm living in, but every move I took today felt like it was in quicksand. My lumpy body wouldn't fit in my clothes quickly enough. My hair went frizzy and wouldn't dry properly. My eye make up got smeared and took time to make reparatory attempts. And I got into work nearly 20 mins late. Grrrrr!!!!!!!!!!

Oh yeah, I know this is all probably a good lesson in patience and accepting the little hurdles that life throws in our paths and about not letting them get to me... But right now I'm just pi**ed off and feel like hitting something!!
PS: Just stood up to get my breakfast, and realised that ball of tension is still in my back. Ow. :o(

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

How I Became A Runner

I ran 3.5miles this morning in 28minutes. I am running 8 minute miles. ME?!! Just 2 weeks ago I could barely finish a 2.2mile route in under 20mins, and I'd been plodding along at that for weeks, if not months and years when you think about it. And now, seemingly suddenly, I can run for up to 5 miles (so far) and at a pace of 8min/mile. How did this happen?!*
A quick run-down of all the diverse factors which contributed to this:
1. I gained a lot of weight really fast. Seriously. About 4kg in 4 weeks. That's what happens when you eat like Michael Phelps but without the training.. I'm only half-joking. The weight gain didn't help with the running but it certainly gave me some good motivation!
2. I joined an online food blog - My Fitness Pal - it's surprising what a bit of support can do to motivate you. Ok, seeing as I've given them the plug... http://www.myfitnesspal.com/
3. I got a Polar HRM for my recent 25th Birthday - it brought out the best in my competitive spirit.
4. I ran later in the morning one weekend and noticed the benefits of my porridge breakfast meant I was bounding along much faster, so I tried to emulate that time and feeling of energy the next time I went for my morning run.
And finally:
5. I changed my route, changed my iPod workout mix, and tried to just relax at an easy pace.
I've emphasised relax simply because I think that was the most important thing that I changed. In all my years of attempting to run I've chosen the wrong partners, the wrong pace, the wrong route. Pish posh. It shouldn't matter. I should have ignored all those external influences and just stuck with what was right for me. This time it was different, I was running on my own, and I was pushing to go a little outside my comfort zone, so I worked hard at relaxing. Not an easy thing for me to do. But it seems to be working so far.
*I know this is not exactly stimulating stuff, but this is my blog so I can write about whatever I want. So there.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Self-Sabotage Sunday

The title of this blog is fairly self-explanatory, it's an expression of my attempts to find balance, and this weekend is fairly illustrative of that struggle. After my uber-productive Saturday of eating healthily, exercising, completing various housework tasks, socialising, grocery shopping and even managing to fit in an outing to the ballet (I'm cultured me!), I wake up Sunday at 1pm... I crawl out of bed and move at a pace of 2 mph as I attempt to make myself presentable to visit my brother. I eventually leave the house nearly 3 hours later, after consuming a bowl of porridge (good!), a bowl of fruit (also good!) a snack pack of oat cookies (hmm...) and 2 big pieces of white Toblerone... (uh oh...) I won't even bother detailing the rest of my nutritive mis-deeds for the day, as I already had to complete my online food diary and I don't fancy seeing it again! It seems to be all or nothing with me. I'm either eating like a monk and exercising like a demon (conjuring images of demonic monks there...), or I'm sitting sloth-like on my couch, stuffing my face with endless "goodies"... Although at the moment I seem to be exercising ok, thanks to my recent (and entirely unanticipated) running addiction. It's just those sugar cravings I need to curb.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

From Procrastination to Productivity!

Somehow, in the last 24 hours, I have become extremely productive! Aside from the good scrubbing I've given the kitchen, the numerous loads of laundry and other household duties, I managed to fit in a run this morning. I had intended to go for a 4.3 mile route but ended up doing 4.85miles in under 40mins! I was in a slight state of shock, but I still found some energy to get all that household stuff finally finished. If I knew how I had done this believe me I would share the secret, as it is I am just hoping to maintain this momentum long enough to get everything ticked off on my list!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Protracted Procrastination...

I've been a Blog-Watcher for over a year now and I'm very much aware of my lack of online presence. So I set this blog up about a month ago just waiting for the right event to begin my blogging with... well... enough procrastination, I'm just gonna start typing and hope for the best.