Friday, May 9, 2014

What Would Jamie Do?

I admit it.  I was whining.  And I ought to know by now that that never goes as well as I think it will. He-who-trains decided I wasn't having enough fun throughout the week, so he added in another workout: 3 minutes flat-out cardio then Ab exercise.  Repeat til you puke... or something like that.  I told him I would start it today, but then woke up this morning crazy tired-- like can't peel myself off the couch, like taking a shower seemed like a monumental effort.  (Uh, not too much effort mind you.)  So I sent him a text telling him I'd do this fun thing next week.  His response: "wimp".   He KNOWS that that is not a name I appreciate being called.  Then he sent another one asking "WWJD?"  Sacrilege aside, the question was intended to ask what Jamie Eason-- fitness model and bodybuilder (whose picture lives on my desktop wallpaper, phone wallpaper, refrigerator and bathroom mirror, to remind me of my goal) would do.  It was a guilt trip extraordinare, no doubt.

The problem is that that stuff works on me.  I spent a while trying to eat and nap and psych myself up and make myself go.  But the more I thought I about it, I realized the answer to "What Would Jamie Do?" isn't what I would've thought it was.  You look at a body like hers, and you think "of course she would go and push herself."  Wrong.  If she has a body like that, by now she has learned to listen to it.  Of course, she goes hard.  But when her body says, and means, "Sit yo behind down today before you have to sit yo behind down for several days" that is surely what she does.

So that's what I'm doing.  I'm day offing-- and only a little embarrased to admit that it's 2:30 in the afternoon and I am in my pjs.  And I might just stay that way for the rest of the day.

Besides, tomorrow is death-by-leg-day, which He-who-trains has been making a big deal about for now over a week.  If I bail on that, I will. never. hear. the. end. of. it.   I might have to crawl out, but I'd better at least show up.  And I'd like to make it more than three minutes.  So yeah, I can park it today, and make sure I've had enough to drink and actually rest.  Because tomorrow when the question "What Would Jamie Do?" comes to my mind, the answer will be "Wear it out.  Give it more than you have. Go home proud."

Oh and just for fun: for anyone who loves leg day as much as I do.  I'm just saying...

Monday, May 5, 2014

I don't do mediocre

Looking at pictures of the past is an act of bravery I think.  I was looking through some things the other day, and found a boatload of them-- mostly from when I was in high school.  Truth be told, they were my "Maybe One Day" inspiration as far as my body goes.  But I did observe some other things.
1) I've had really bad posture for a really long time.  All the pictures from the side view show me slouching in the most attrocious sorts of ways. I will not be pointing this out to He-who-trains, who stays on me about slouching.
2) I saw where it was that I really began getting heavy-- clearly, for me it was not the freshman fifteen-- it had to have been at least the freshman twenty five (or more.)  I don't remember that-- I guess I didn't have access to a scale, but I don't remember having to buy new clothes.  But the pictures between my senior prom and the end of my freshman year in college are pretty revealing.

And the best observation (which makes the picture looking totally worth it)
I've surpassed all but one of my "maybe one day" inspiration pics.  I always looked at those pictures, and thought how skinny I looked.  And I did, compared to the beluga whale person I let myself become.

When He-who-trains asked me about my fitness goals and my ideal body weight when I first started training with him, I gave him the weight I was in high school.  (I'm 5-10 lbs away from that, depending on how grouchy the scale is on a particular day, but I'm smaller.  So yeah, about that "Muscle takes up less space than fat"...) I considered myself ok in high school...  I wasn't the skinny girl that's for sure.  But I thought I was maybe on the heavy end of normal.

And now that I am where I am, I realize I was willing to settle for mediocre when I set my goals. I'm still thirty-ish pounds away from even being a healthy weight, much less being a competitive bodybuilder.  There was a time when I would've been happy here.

I guess this is on my mind because I see this attitude happening in so many places around me-- where average is good enough, so long as it doesn't require the extra work of being excellent. Settling is so much easier than being serious.  If there's anything I've learned in this process, it's that change takes a lot of busting it.  Overcoming habits and comfort zones and self limiting, or worse, self destructive behavior is a brutal business.

I made a decision a few weeks ago that I struggle with every time I go to the gym.  I've started wearing spandex and sleeveless shirts to the gym-- even though I'm pretty certain that just because something will physically go on a body doesn't mean it should be worn by every body.  I'm fairly certain I'm not in a body that should be out in spandex. But I make the intentional choice not to hide my body, so that I have to deal with what I see.  And well... bless anyone who happens to be in there.  But frankly, I don't much care what they think... I'm not there for them. I can see what has improved. (And apparently others notice too-- and they're awesome with comments.  I even got a left-handed compliment from He-who-trains who said as I was doing incline pushups "I can see a tricep there for the first time ever." So there's that.)  But more importantly, I have to deal with all the places that still have a long way to go.  I have to take stock every time I'm in there.  It'd be a lot easier to hide, but I see every lump and jiggle, and notice every time my under arm fat keeps waving long after I've stopped.   I keep reminding myself that I don't do mediocre.

Life lesson, methinks.
Sophomore prom...pretty close to this size and shape now, but I think I'm currently still a little bit chunkier.  Also, clearly, not terribly excited by my prom date!  

Yeah, pretty sure that was the last time I wore shorts.  I told myself that if my legs ever got that skinny again, I'd wear them.  Think I set that bar too low.

Death by Leg Day

Thou shalt not call thy trainer "old", lest you shall surely die.

I think my exact words were "you do alright for an old guy".  Only he didn't seem to take it as a complement.  Odd.

But to be fair, I was already on his list.  I'm the trouble stirrer-upper who invited another client of his and my workout partner out for girls night.  He did make some comment about "as long as I'm your trainer, that ain't happening."  When I innocently asked to what he was referring, he said me drinking margaritas.   The truth is-- drinking has pretty much lost its appeal to me since He-who-trains retold me a very well timed story about letting things get in my way.  And I didn't drink.  Nor did I eat anything that wasn't on my meal plan.  But apparently I'm guilty by association.  Actually, the Margarita Amigas are apparently all guilty.  (Though what happens at Girls Night Out stays at Girls Night Out, all of us were well behaved.)

We've however all been instructed to attend death by leg day.  I've been told that he expects me to last 17 minutes. (Last time I was invited to such a fun event, I made it 22 minutes.  And couldn't walk for a very long time.)

Praying the addage is true: what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.  Oy! To my congregation who will have to see me on Sunday, I apologize in advance for any whining, wincing, or awkward walking.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Saying No... So I can say Yes.

My friend posted this (heavenly, delightful, inappropriate noise inducing) picture on Facebook.  I was being playful when I made my comment "When in doubt, say 'yes.'  And because I know that he takes good care of himself, I know he was also playing when he made his response.

But it got me thinking.  I say no a lot more than I used to.  I say no a lot more than I say yes.

Here are my no's:
No to gluten
No to mindless eating
No to sugary things (unless its a preworkout snack or I'm in desperate need of quick carbs)
No to social eating
No to drinking (except very rarely)
No to outside forces dictating my schedule
No to not giving my best
No to fried things
No to "trigger foods"
No to unplanned food
No to playing games

Don't misunderstand.  I don't feel cheated or deprived.  And I joked with my friend without even drooling...or sniffing the screen.  (And for the record, I cheat occasionally.)

But I've realized I say no because it enables me to say bigger yeses:
Yes to feeling better
Yes to feeling better in my skin
Yes to new confidence
Yes to very huge, but very doable goals.

Besides, when He-who trains isn't oinking at me, he has given me a very helpful motto:  Fat lasts a lot longer than flavor.