Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Getting Older or Getting Better?

It's all a matter of perspective, right? We've all heard the saying "you are only as old as you feel". There are days that's an okay thing, then there are the days you feel your age + one hundred years.

I will be the first to say that I have NEVER been more fit in my life. I have plenty of energy, I hate to sit still for too long and most of the clothes in my closet are in a size I haven't worn since I was in elementary school. Possibly in junior high, but I'm pretty sure it was elementary school.

I would not trade a second of my life now to be younger. Maybe on those days I feel 144, but even then I appreciate all the work my body did to feel that sore. Ten years ago you wouldn't have been able to get me to do one sit up, never mind 5 rounds of crunch and reach, straight leg raises and twisting jackknife sit ups for 25 seconds each. Now I look at core circuits like that as a challenge and I do the best I can. Yes, the perfectionist just admitted that she does her BEST...and yes I will admit that my best does not mean it is perfect.

I might feel better than I ever have and probably look better than ever, but there are undeniable changes that come when you get older. I experienced my first last week. I've worn glasses since I was in eighth grade and as of last Friday I am now wearing glasses with progressive lenses. Woo hoo? They aren't so bad when I remember not to try to look down without moving my head. Let's just say for someone who has challenges with gravity walking down stairs with your new progressive lenses is an adventure. Thank god for hand rails, let's leave it at that.

Another change, or maybe this is only me, is that your credit score matters to you. I'm thinking this might just be a "me" thing. When I was younger and a lot dumber it didn't occur to me that being careful with money mattered and credit cards represented real money. When it finally did occur to me (about 7 years ago) I started the long process of clawing my way out of the financial black hole I'd created for myself. Hard work pays off, last Thursday I was approved to lease a 2015 Ford Fusion Titanium. I still walk in the garage and just stare in wonder for a few minutes. So Tyler, if I'm late to class, it isn't that I didn't get my lazy butt out of bed, it's that I wasted precious time just staring at a car. Hey, if anyone wants to try out the heated passenger seat let me know...I look for excuses to drive it so I'll take you for a ride.

I don't mind that at the end of March I will add another year to my age. I plan to make the next 45 years better than the first 45. I want to be stronger, faster and better during my 45th year than any other year to date. There is a 525 pound tire I have plans to flip again and again. I want to work on my back squat and get my lats loosened up so my front squats look and feel better. I want to see just how much weight Tyler can put on the prowler before I can't move it an inch and then I want to work until I can push it the length of the turf and back. I want to be a better friend, a better student, a better teacher, a better daughter and a better sister than ever before. I will be more positive and I won't quit even when I don't fully believe I can do what I set out to do. When I fail, because there will be times all my strength and stubbornness won't help, I want to do so with grace. I want to learn from my mistakes and use what I learn to come back and be better the next time.

My word for 2015 was perseverance. I need to remember persevering doesn't mean I will always be the best, it simply means I give my all and I don't stop striving to be more and be better.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Double Standards

My last blog post "Here We Go Again" earned many comments on my facebook page. All of them made me smile and feel thankful for the people who took the time to comment on what I poured out. One made me think and now five days later I'm still thinking about it. I don't think I've stopped thinking about it actually. It percolates away at the back of my mind, sometimes pushing to the front when the circumstances are right.

I won't repost her comment here, but the gist, or at least what I took from it, was "you are walking the walk, don't let your mind play games with you. Train it like you are training your body". She's a wise woman. I'm blessed to be surrounded by so many wise people.

I have a double standard. I think most of us do really. I know I demand perfection from myself, but I am quick to be forgiving and encouraging to my friends. If they feel they screwed up I do my best to point out what they did right and boost their spirits. With myself I attack like every one's nightmare of the worst teacher ever. I am a teacher and I would NEVER treat my students the way I treat myself. I'd be fired, and rightfully so. Don't get me wrong: I have high standards for my students, but I don't belittle them if they don't hit the bar. I tell them from the first moment I meet them that I don't expect them to be perfect: I always expect them to do their best and I know their best won't be the same every day. I need to apply that same care to myself.

The journey during the past week was pretty straight forward. I was nursing my left shoulder, trying to walk the fine line between pushing too far and making sure I moved the joint to keep things moving. Wednesday night was the hardest for me. Tyler introduced barbell cleans during Muscle Hour. I've had practice with them before in buddy training, but I always look for more practice. I got more practice on Wednesday, but not with the barbell. Even trying to clean the empty bar hurt. Not agony, I could have powered through, but enough pain to make me decide I wasn't going to gain anything by soldiering on. As much as it pissed me off (and I was royally pissed, trust me) I used the pvc pipe to practice the different moves involved in the cleans.

Then after the introduction and instruction we had a little circuit. One of the exercises on the circuit was box jumps. That made me happy, I can jump no shoulder movement there. True enough, but I would like to recommend to anyone that you not attempt a box jump until you are completely focused on the box. My first jump was a fail and I fell, scraping the inside of my right leg on the edge of the box. In the recent past that stumble would have ended it for me right there. I would have deemed myself a failure and decided box jumps were not for me.

Believe me, I was ready to decide that, but I remembered my wise friend (and let's be honest, teacher's pet here...I couldn't just quit with Tyler watching me. I don't want to disappoint an instructor, ever). I cut myself some slack assured the people who witnessed it I was just fine and stepped back to focus. My jumps were not perfect, I landed closer to the edge of the box and harder than I did in buddy training, but I landed every jump.

My biggest fear from the time I asked Tyler to help me with my box jumps was falling or hurting myself. I discovered falling was not a deal breaker or the end of the world. I gained a bruise as a souvenir and I survived! There weren't even any tears.

I learned things this week. I learn things most weeks really, but this week they stuck with me and I am hoping I will carry them forward.

1. I'm still not perfect and I'm never going to be perfect. I need to give my best and do my best and be content.

2. Sometimes doing what's right will feel like a let down, but it is for the best.

3. That thing you've been dreading often won't be as bad as you fear.

4. When you fall, dust yourself off, get back up and do it!

5. The things you think make you weak and disgusting are often the things that inspire other people.

6. Your teachers/instructors/friends really do know what they're saying when they tell you you can do it. Trust them, not the critic in your head.

I'll leave you with a picture of my latest souvenir. Yep it's a bruise and it's a lot bigger than I would have thought it would be, but it isn't evidence of a fail. I see it as a reminder to step back, reflect on what I've learned and get it done.

Thanks for reading!
I still got it done!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Here we go Again

Wow, almost two posts in one week. It must be a record or something. Possibly it's just that I'm processing through some garbage and I decided instead of being polite and just processing on my own, I'd take to my blog so anyone out there who thinks I'm still somewhere in the vicinity of normal will learn that's simply not true. Normal is a setting on my washer: I'm a bundle of quirks and craziness. Lucky you. Just so you know, it is not too late to close this page and go on with your evening.

So what exactly is running through my mind right now? How much time to you have? Seriously, this could be a long one, unless I decide to keep the crazy to a minimum and spare you the worst of it. Well, the truth is, if you're still reading at this point you have likely read my ramblings before and you know it's unlikely I'm sparing anyone anything.

I've noticed something about myself, many, many times. I was reminded of it last Saturday morning following my less than graceful attempt to perform a forward roll. I didn't mention it then because 1. I was still processing it. 2. I am nothing if I am not a people pleaser and I don't want anyone to think their advice or help has been taken the wrong way.

The truth is that many times, when someone corrects me what I hear is "You aren't good enough". I know that is not the intended message and I WANT to be corrected so I can get better. Sometimes I actually take the correction as the help it was intended to be, but if I am down or hurting or anything less than one hundred percent no matter how kind your words are or how true and well-meaning I'm going to hear "You aren't good enough".

Does this mean you should never correct me? NO!! The people in my life whom I trust the most offer correction and suggestions. Sometimes I might take it the wrong way, but I KNOW that's my problem. It is my issue and I am aware of it so there is no need to walk on eggshells. I'm a big girl, I'm a strong girl and I won't break. I might cry, I might get silent and say nothing or I might get angry, but it will pass. Beneath it all I am an adult and I understand that people don't take the time to correct or talk to someone they care nothing about.

That wasn't so painful...I don't think it's any secret I don't think I'm worth much of anything. I hope there are some things I do well, and there are times I believe there are things I do well.

Before I go further, I'd like to assure you that I am not looking for sympathy. I'm working through thoughts and ideas and you, you brave soul, happened to stumble into it. Breathe deep and know this too shall pass.

I've explored this next thought before. Usually I keep it to myself, because to me it smacks of begging for attention. What the hell though, as long as I'm being honest I might as well let all the crazy spill out, maybe it can flush out the mean girl who lives in the dark corners of my mind. She's been quite vocal lately.

I'm a fat girl. My body might look different now, but that mentality is still there. No matter what I do I feel like I should be better. I look around at my life now and wonder when it will end...when everyone is going to see what an impostor I am and tell me to hit the road. I will be quiet when I want to speak up and smile when I want to cry just to avoid making waves.

I want the fat girl to ask for what she wants, demand what she deserves and understand that she is worthy and worthwhile. I want her to believe, as a dear friend recently suggested, that I AM one of the "cool kids" now. I want to enjoy the amazing fun times without worrying they will end.

In the meantime, I'm going to keep working out, working on my nutrition and doing my best to take two steps forward for the inevitable steps back. At the moment I'm listening to my body and trying not to push my left shoulder too hard. It feels so much better than it did on Saturday, but it's not 100%.

Tonight during Muscle Hour when I wanted to ignore it and practice my barbell hang cleans I did the adult thing, admitted the pain and did what I could. So, do I feel good and wise for listening to my body? Nope, not a bit...I feel like a fraud. One step at a time, I'll listen to my body, but I am in NO way going to like it.

That's enough for one evening. Time for some Boxer snuggles and sleep.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, February 14, 2015


    A feeling of self-assurance arising from one's appreciation of one's own abilities or qualities.

    I'd like to have some confidence in myself someday. I mean REAL confidence, not just pretending I feel confident. I'm getting better, there are moments in time that I believe I can do whatever I set my mind to. If I am being honest though, most of the time my belief in myself is dependent on other people's opinion of me. Yes I realize there is no way I'll ever be truly happy if I let other people's opinions matter so much to me.

    Today I had an opportunity to decide how I felt about myself. In the moment I was disappointed, sad and just wanted to crawl away, lick my wounds and nurse my injury. Now with ice, ibuprofen and time I am proud of myself. Not shout from the rooftops proud, but that isn't me. I'm never going to be a shout it from the rooftops kind of person. I'm going to be the quiet one standing back, waiting to do what she does before moving on.

    This morning was Saturday Morning Sweat. I love that class, I still love that class, even when I am less than graceful. Today was a not so graceful day. I had second thoughts about trying the last move of the warm up. Burpees are fine, a roll then a burpee? Umm...sure I tried it. Right side, not too horrible. Left side. Let's just say that in addition to not being able to stop as quickly as someone with less mass, I should probably have thought more carefully before I decided to land on a joint as delicate as a shoulder with my entire mass.

    In plain and simple English: Not only do chunky girls not stop on a dime, they shouldn't land on their shoulder either.

    Nothing broken, nothing dislocated, but it feels like I am as badly bruised as I have ever been and trying to lift a carton of milk using my left arm is not happening right now.

    After my landing I decided I'd try to hide it, I wanted to get through the workout and make my trainer proud. I didn't want the attention for being a klutz so I bit my lip and tried to soldier through. Yeah...DUMB MOVE. I didn't make it through one of the core exercises before I had more attention than I EVER wanted.

    Tyler was kind, but he was FIRM. The goal is not to soldier through injury: it is to speak up and use common sense. I don't think he mentioned the common sense part, I added that. Of course, I don't know exactly what he told me: I was busy trying not to cry and convincing myself the other four people there didn't know what had happened and no one was looking at me.

    At the time I was compiling a list of everything I couldn't do during the work out. I couldn't do KB swings with both arms, couldn't do the KB clean and press with my left arm. It really was a short list, but at the time I was convinced I sucked. Really, I couldn't have been so bad: Tyler joined in and worked out with us, he didn't follow me around the studio asking if I was okay every two seconds.

    Now with some time and less pain I can see things more clearly. I got in a darn good workout. I still did burpees, I did one arm KB swings, I jumped rope, I did the clean presses with my right arm, overhead squats were possible and I certainly used the rowing machine. It might not have been exactly the workout I planned, but I wasn't a failure.

    Maybe confidence for me isn't puffing up my chest and bragging about all I accomplish. It seems that confidence for me is more about  recognizing when I do the best I can do and being satisfied with that. Do I want the "atta girls" fist bumps and high fives? I do absolutely, but I also know I need to find that satisfaction inside myself. Until I do anyone and everyone can tell me how well I did and all I'll see is what I didn't do or what I did wrong.

    So the journey continues with a brief detour to heal a shoulder and shake out some of those stubborn demons. That's the point though: to do what I need to do to be mentally and physically fit. No one promised it would be easy and it isn't, but it is so worth it.

    Right now I think I'll take another dose of ibuprofen, do some shoulder stretches and movement, spend some time icing the poor abused joint and get more sleep. I may not be the most graceful person ever, but I am exactly who I'm supposed to be.

    As always thanks for reading!

    Friday, January 30, 2015

    The Gladiator Gauntlet

    This morning I faced fears and doubts and came out on the other side wiser, stronger and proud. Yes, I am once again saying I was PROUD of myself. I found it impacted the way I felt the rest of the day.

    The morning started as Fridays often do. I stumbled out of bed at 4:30 am, Abbey bounded after me, wagging and prancing. I wondered what was wrong with me, why I couldn't work out at a time when a sane, rational person might. Then I remembered, I've never claimed to be sane or rational and continued getting ready. Then downstairs with the boxer bouncing along and the Maine Coon cat wailing away. Everyone got their breakfast, and I filled my water bottle before venturing out the door. Then the drive to Pride Fitness Performance.

    This morning's workout was Gladiator. We had exercises like Landmine Presses, Partner Prowler Pushes and Severed Head Carry. Don't worry, there were not actually any severed heads. You put a towel through the handle of a kettlebell and hold onto the towel while you walk the studio for 45 seconds. It's good for grip strength, and it made the instructor smile. My favorite part of Gladiator?  Oh come on, guess. Yep, the Partner Prowler Push. The last round this morning Eric got on, then Tyler joined him. The weight of the prowler plus 70 pounds in plates and Tyler and Eric equaled about 625 pounds. I pushed it, not well, not without stops, but I finished what I started.

    Then came the T2 challenge: The Gladiator Gauntlet. Let me explain what was involved in the gauntlet to you.

    Warrior Crawl: Put your feet on a 25 pound plate, get down on your elbows and pull your body and the plate across the studio to Tyler. Basically a moving plank.

    5 Slams: The men picked a 50 pound slam ball up over their heads and then, slammed it down. Repeat five times. We women used the 30 pound slam ball.

    10 Hammer Swings: Pick up a sledge hammer and hit the 350 pound tractor tire with it. Good for releasing any frustrations.

    Tire Flip: Flip the tire you just hit with the sledge hammer (this was the biggest reason I wanted to try the gauntlet. I never pass up a chance to flip a tire, ever.)

    Tire Jump: Now jump into and out of the tire you just flipped. Good times...good times.

    Prowler Dash: As fast as you can push the low end down, then the high end back. (the other reason I finally decided I HAD to do it: love the prowler.)

    Keep in mind this was all for time.

    This challenge was a choice, you could do it if you wished, but it wasn't required. I watched Julie and Aaron complete it all the time thinking maybe I could do most of it, maybe. Then Tyler asked if anyone else wanted to try. He asked me and he asked Eric. He must have seen something in my face, because he asked what was scaring me. Definitely the Warrior Crawl. Let me be frank: I SUCK at crawls. I have to do them on my hands because my lower back seizes if I try it on my elbows. Tyler assures me we can work on this (guess I'll trust him). I told him and he said "You can do it on your hands."

    Damn, damn, damn...he knew he had me then. He knows I won't pass up a chance to flip a tire. I said okay, made several comments about having a screw loose and prayed before I started that I would be slightly faster than a herd of turtles stampeding through peanut butter. Slightly faster, I was pretty sure I wasn't coming in under 1 minute, 30 seconds but I hoped desperately for something under 2:30. More on my time later.

    Warrior Crawl: And I thought valslide army crawls were bad. I found a whole new level of yuck. I stopped about halfway through my lap and everyone started cheering. Oh right...this was being witnessed by the 5:30 am crew. Time to pull up my big girl panties and get it done. Once I tagged Tyler's hand I could move on to to slams.

    Slams: I regret not taking the 50 pound slam ball. I love throwing that thing down. It makes such a satisfying thud when it hits the turf. These didn't take long and I felt good about my speed, especially since I could picture the turtles lapping me while I did my warrior crawl.

    Hammer Swings: Love these too. I've done them a few times before and this time I didn't nail myself in the knee: BONUS!!! The clumsy girl didn't hit herself with a sledge hammer. It was a miracle.

    Tire Flip/Jump: Oh yeah, this one was MINE. I know how to flip, I love to flip and let me brag: I think I am good at flipping tires. Oh wait...then I had to jump. One thing at a time. I enjoyed my tire flip. Then it was time to jump. It took precious time to remind myself that I could jump into the tire and out again. The jump in was fine, not a soft landing, but I got in without tripping. The jump out, not so graceful. More time passed while I psyched myself up and one of my feet grazed the tire. The landing wasn't remotely graceful and Tyler asked me if I was okay. Hell, I was still on my feet (mostly) and I wasn't crying yet: things were pretty close to perfect in my daily battle with gravity.

    Prowler Dash: Okay, this I could do. And did do. The best part is holding on to the prowler tends to negate my tendency to trip

    Now, back to my time on this challenge. 2 minutes 23 seconds. Better than 2:30 and I wasn't lapped by any turtles. I may have been the slowest person to compete and I didn't earn the T2 challenge, but I completed the challenge. I did things I wasn't sure I could and no one got hurt.

    On the drive home I realized completing the Gauntlet was fitting for today. January 30, 2012 I walked into the studio and started my journey. I was a Mooser and I was scared to death. If you had told me that first frosty morning that I would ever be able to do half of what I did today I would have laughed at you and I never would have believed it. That very first morning it was a struggle to get through the rounds of  the 30:10 workout. This morning I completed 3 rounds of Gladiator and while I was tired, I wasn't completely spent.

    I've grown and changed so much in three years. I'm stronger, fitter and healthier. I am also generally more confident, happier and not tied to my comfort zone. I still have a long way to go, but I'm not worried about the end. I don't really know where the end will be. This is my new lifestyle, it's not just a trip with a set destination.

    Thanks for reading!

    Saturday, January 24, 2015

    The More Things Change

    No one truly stays the same through their life. Our basic personalities remain the same, but experiences add new layers and nuances. I am generally shy and quiet, but push me too far or sit me down in front of a computer to write and the shyness retreats. Someone told me this week that I am very eloquent with written words. This person is making a valiant effort to bring that same quality out in me when I need to have a face-to-face conversation.

    It was an amazing week. Four great workouts, the perfect Yoga Corr class, seeing students making progress. I also met one of my short term goals a week ahead of schedule. Thursday night during buddy training I was able to do a dead man hang for 37 seconds one time and 32 seconds the next time. My first short term goal was to do a 20 second dead man hang by January 31. I knocked that one out of the park on January 22. If I could have ignored the discomfort three more seconds on my first round I could have reached 40 seconds and my second short term goal. Next time.

    The best part of the week was Friday. A 5:30 am workout, a walk with Abbey and then a road trip to Boston. I got to spend time with good friends I met through Fortitude Fitness Systems and we had a blast. There were random gravity checks (courtesy of me), laughs, brownies from Mike's Pastry, adventures in fire escape stairwells and time away from the day-to-day routine of home.

    Our day culminated with heading to TD Garden to see Garth Brooks in concert. He is amazing and his show was superb. Our seats were in the balcony and it took me time to adjust to how high we were. I'm not exactly afraid of heights, but they do give me pause from time to time. Then the show started and my seat didn't matter.

    I love music, almost all music. I love the music I work out to because the beat is often what keeps me going. If I can lose myself in the music my brain forgets to register how much I want to stop. When I am home I often turn on the music, turn it up and sing. I love to sing. I may not be fabulous, but I'm enthusiastic. What I lack in skill I can make up for in volume.

    The title of this blog was motivated by an experience we had on the elevator going to the Garden from the parking garage. The doors opened and there were quite a few people in the elevator already, but room for the four of us to get in as well. We were in and waiting for the doors to close when there was an announcement that the elevator was full or something close to that. I don't remember the exact words, but I remember the feeling after that announcement.

    The "fat kid" is still inside me and I was tempted to step out. I thought with me in the elevator it wouldn't go anywhere. I fought that urge, but it was strong. I was braced, waiting for someone to tell me to step out so the elevator could move. It never happened.

    I know from pictures and other people's comments that I don't look the same anymore, but deep inside I'm still the "fat girl", still the one no one noticed. I'm still the same person inside, but not exactly the same. There's a "fit girl" inside too and little by little she's asserting herself. Without the "fit girl" and the support, encouragement and shoulders of my circle of friends I might have given up when the going got tough. I did slide down the mountain, get mired in the muck and cry buckets of tears, but I didn't completely give up. When it looked like giving up was an option the "fit girl" took charge and made sure I let some friends know I was struggling. She's pretty wise for all her impatience.

    Back to the concert. I heard all of my favorite songs, even ones by Trisha Yearwood when she joined Garth. My favorite song and moment of the concert, even with three completely obnoxious cowboy wanna-be's in the row in front of us, was when Garth performed "The Dance". He encouraged the audience to sing along for the whole concert and hearing all those voices in the arena was so special. I teared up, I always do when I hear "The Dance". In the past it has reminded me of people and things I've lost, but this time the tears were grateful tears. Yes there has been pain but as Garth sings "I could have missed the pain, but I'd have had to miss the dance".  Not a chance.

    Thank you to my badass friends for including me in such a special day!

    Back to your evening now.

    As always, thanks for reading!

    Saturday, January 17, 2015

    Goals, Trust & Food....

    Just so you are warned: this blog will be a mix of things I have been thinking and feeling this week. I'll do my best to make it coherent, but if you're reading this you've probably read my posts before and you're somewhat used to my stream of consciousness style. Which is a really nice way of saying that reading this blog might make you wonder if I have ADD. I do get easily distracted by many things.

    First off, let's take a look at my goals for 2015. I shared them with Tyler and he said they were good and we'd do our best to meet them. It was a good reality check for me that he wasn't promising I'd achieve them, but that if I did my best, he'd do his part and we'd see where we ended up. When you are a perfectionist it is very important to have a realist in your circle to remind you perfection is not the goal. Without further rambling here are my Fitness Goals for 2015.

    1. Do 5 pull ups in a row without using a band by July 2015.
        a. Do 1 pull up without a band by March 2015.
        b. Do 3 pull ups with no band by May 2015.

    2. Complete a 60 second Deadman hang by May 2015.
        a. Complete a 20 second Deadman hang by January 31, 2015.
        b. Complete a 40 second Deadman hang by March 31, 2015.

    3. Climb the rope at Pride Fitness Performance and ring the cowbell.

    4. Complete Tough Mudder New England in 6 hours or less (June 6-7).

    5. Start and FINISH a Spartan Sprint at Killington.

    6. Complete Derby Elementary School's Cornfield Mile Run in less than 16 minutes.

    So there you have it. What I plan to accomplish in 2015. I know they aren't easy goals, but I'm not content to set easy goals I know I can master. I'm willing to give myself goals I'm not positive I can meet, but I will throw myself heart and soul into.

    Now on to my second topic for this post. One of my least favorite words in the English language. Trust. Maybe it isn't the word I dislike so much as the concept. Trust means I need to let down my guard and allow people inside. It also means I need believe in myself. I don't trust other people easily and it is rare for me to trust myself at all. I'm only human, there are times I've made mistakes about the people I trust and I remember those times whenever I need to decide if it is worth the possible pain to let down my guard. Trusting people and trusting the process will be my work for the rest of my life.

    At this time I can say that trusting the process is the hardest. I have proof that trusting the process works, but I still have a difficult time giving up the illusion of control to extend that trust. In a recent buddy training session I was able to match my personal record for a dead lift. I lifted 315 pounds and it was actually easy. The first time I was pretty sure my arms would fall off. When I lifted 315 the last time it just made me hungry for more. I knew I could lift more, but Tyler said we'd call it good for the moment. Then he thanked me for trusting the process. It wasn't easy for me to give that trust, but I reaped the rewards. I can lift heavy and things that used to terrify me, like box jumps, merely make me want more now. I'm not telling you that I never doubt whether my trust has been well placed, but at least I'm still willing to put myself out there. Not in every instance, but more often than before.

    Trusting the process brings me to my last topic for this post: food. I'm one week into the nutrition challenge I started last Sunday. I survived the first two days where all I had was juice and the last few days have been eating low carb. I'm not very far into the challenge and am staying away from the scale for the moment, but changes are taking place. The biggest change I notice is that I feel better. Not that my diet before was complete crap, but there was more than enough junk in it. In just a week's time I have more energy and I don't feel as anxious or uptight. I'm not sure the change is all attributable to the change in my diet, but at least part of it is.

    I don't think the way I look at food is completely changed, but it has started to change. When I put myself out on the line a couple of times this week I didn't immediately turn to food to mask the uneasy, uncomfortable feelings. I let myself feel uneasy and uncomfortable and amazingly enough I survived it. Tracking my food has made me more aware of what I am putting in my mouth and what I want to put in my mouth. One step forward this week.

     I might not lose the most inches or pounds by the end of this challenge, and really that was never my point in joining. I'm not about public recognition, I'm much more comfortable flying under the radar. If you want to tell me I've done something great, then tell me in private. That means much more. I am uncomfortable in groups and if you want to send my anxiety through the roof then by all means call attention to me. What other people think of me might not be any of business, but to hear through the grapevine that I didn't deserve recognition that I received is hurtful. I suppose that says more about the people making those comments than about me, but it hurts just the same.

    Those are my thoughts this week. If you're still reading let me say again how much I appreciate you taking the time. Ever since I was a little girl I wanted to be a writer. This blog gives me that opportunity. Maybe I can even help someone else by being open and honest. I'm not much in a face-to-face conversation, but I have a definite voice here.

    Thanks for reading!