Stay on target…

I got a pleasant surprise when I got on the scale this morning and “176.0” blinked up at me. Three pounds till I hit what I have nominally identified as my “goal”, and then work to stay there. I’m not sure exactly what all has kicked into gear to help get me here, but whatever it is, I hope it sticks around.

I have been going to Yin Yoga the past several classes, and it has helped me start to feel more focused and rebalanced. This is definitely a good thing, and hopefully something that will only get stronger with time. I need to feel as though I am coming back into myself again, to figure out who this new person is and what she is capable of. It’s more than just the weight. There is an entire sense of “wholeness” that I want to find. Contentment with myself in my own skin and in my own life.

I’m beginning to understand why people go through a mid-life crisis. I’m 42, and it’s hitting me that I’m basically halfway through my working career… providing the idea of “retiring in your 60s” even exists by the time I get there. My dissatisfaction with the way things are is tangible at times – the idea of going “one more week” like this is sometimes unthinkable, let alone another 20, 30, or 40 years.

I’m working on ways to make my life different – I’m pursuing my degree in Health and Wellness and looking at various Coaching programs once I have the degree – but sometimes I don’t even know what I want to do with the rest of my life so I wonder if I’m making the wrong choice or going down the wrong path. But I don’t want to let that fear paralyze me – I need to just keep going, because “going” is better than “staying still”.

In Which Coyote Re-emerges Into the Light

I knew it had been a while since I had posted anything here, but I had not realized it was over a month. So as I wave apologetically to my pawful of followers (wow, I have followers, how cool is that?), I resolve to be more consistent in updating my little corner of cyberspace. Since my train of fitness thought has completely derailed in recent weeks, maybe a little pseudo-accountability to my followers (seriously… I have followers!) will help me get back on track.

Life recently has been much more focused on work and social stuff than on health and wellness. But since long-term success requires the integration of ALL aspects of my life, I can expand the idea of “fitness” to include finding am overall work-life-health balance instead of just things like “did I go to the gym today?” (no, I didn’t, just in case you were wondering).

I missed the Firefly Run in March because, to be brutally honest, it was too smurfing cold for my taste. I’m not yet die hard enough to embrace “5K at all costs”. Finding FUN, remember? I’m registered for another 5K this Saturday, but probably will not participate. I am dancing at festivals the next two weekends, and with as lax as I have been in exercising, I am afraid I would hurt something at this point.

So the next event is the Diva Dash in May, which was the one I originally had set for my goal event, anyway. Funny how that works out.

Part tortoise, part coyote

If the tortoise’s motto is “slow and steady wins the race”, then I am becoming part tortoise. I have been slack in the exercise department, which will make the Firefly 5K interesting in a couple of weeks. But I have been very good in my eating habits, and have almost broken into the 170s. My target weight range is 170-174, so that’s a significant milestone for me.

Dance is picking up significantly, with practices nearly every day this week to prepare for upcoming shows and festivals. And while I am already happier with how my costumes are fitting, I think I’ll be able to hit my goal by the start of festival season. Call me silly, but I find the idea exciting!

If I expand my definition of “fitness” to include “emotional fitness” (which is also important, IMHO), then that is improving, as well. Aside from an emotional breakdown last week that was triggered by several of my friends losing loved ones, that is. But the fact that it didn’t send me into a week-long tailspin – which it would have done this time last year – is significant.

Progress, slow and steady. Thanks, tortoise.

Owning the results

For the past couple of weeks, I have gotten on the scale and found a way to rationalize the lower number that I was seeing. “It’s water weight.” “I’m dehydrated.” “It’s hormonal.”

This morning I got on the scale, looked at the number and tried to come up with all the reasons why the number wasn’t accurate…then asked myself, “What the hell are you doing? You’ve been eating better for several weeks, you’ve been staying in your calorie range, you’ve been exercising a bit… Why are you so afraid of success that you’re not willing to acknowledge what you’re doing is making a difference?”

I hate my brain sometimes.

So with the new month comes new ownership of the results, bad AND good. If I can accept the blame when my weight goes up, I damn well better be able to accept the credit when it goes down!

I have 10 pounds to go before I reach the goal I have set for myself. A couple of years ago I got within 1 pound of my goal (but never actually reached it), decided that was close enough, hung out in that weight range or a few months, then the weight crept back up. Now I’m wondering if that’s tied to some fear of success? Or is it my general tendency to leave half-finished projects lying around and never getting back to them?

Or maybe those two things are related. Hmm.

I think an experiment is in order…

All good things…

Well, I knew the downward slide couldn’t last forever. Saw an uptick on the scale this morning, but I’m still down from where I was two weeks ago. It just means I’m going to have to start working for it now.

The challenge will be keeping my emotional balance so I don’t stress eat and overindulge like I did this evening. I’m hoping the relatively light breakfast and lunch I had today will offset the “way too much Pei Wei” that I had for dinner. I think I’m going to take pity on my nerves and not get on the scale tomorrow morning. I’m learning to pick my battles.

I’m supposed to be working on my philosophy homework right now, but since the discussion topic is “the meaning of life” and right now I’m in an uber-pessimistic mood, itĀ really would not be good for my grade to try and contribute to the discussion at the moment. Maybe if I get on the treadmill for a while it will help clear my head.

Or I could go find some more Girl Scout Cookies…

Title (optional)

Since I don’t have a pithy subject line popping into my head (or a non-pithy one, for that matter), we will go with the default.

It seems like every morning for the past week or so, I’ve gotten on the scale and the number has been lower than the day before. Not that I’m complaining, mind you, but since I haven’t consciously been doing anything different, I’m starting to wonder if my scale is screwing with me. Maybe I was just eating so much junk and salt that I was retaining more water than I ever thought possible.

I have noticed that cravings are getting easier to suppress (except for the two boxes of Girl Scout Cookies that arrived last week). Maybe the audio I’ve still been listening to regularly has been leaving little footsteps in my brain. Now to nurture it from the subconscious into the conscious… I’m working on my Mindful Eating approach to the Samoas, but have only had limited success so far. I still have a box left to try it on, though!

Last Saturday I went back to belly dance class, and promptly got my butt kicked by the new choreography that we are learning. I haven’t been to class in nearly a month, so everyone else in the class had already had the basics broken down for them. The teacher did a quick breakdown and refresher, and I managed to keep up with a decent chunk of it by the end of the class. My personal goal is to nail the choreography by the beginning of April – I need to find a video of it somewhere so I can drill it at home. I also got reminded yet again that I’m not quite up to my former endurance level, since I was out of breath halfway through it!

Chalk up yet another reason to get my butt back on the treadmill.

Whirlwinds and roller coasters

I like roller coasters, but not the emotional ones, and the past couple of weeks have had some really intense highs and lows. Ramble follows, not strictly fitness-related.

The conference came off really well, with only a couple of small hiccups. My boss was happy, her boss was happy, and her boss’s peers were happy, so all in all, a good experience. I was able to look at myself in the mirror and admit that I was damned good at what I do, and it’s the first time I can remember that I actually believed it.

On Wednesday, the last day of the conference, I got a call from the place where my dogs were boarding that they were having some digestive problems. I knew rationally that it was probably just stress from boarding, but it still made for a rough last day of the conference worrying about them. I got home Wednesday night and picked them up – they’re fine, it was just stress.

Festival season is just around the corner, so our Performing Company started figuring out which choreographies we are doing at which shows. Rehearsals start next Tuesday, and I’m looking forward to it. It’s also motivation to stay on track with my exercise plan, since there are still some pounds I’d like to lose before the season starts. I am also signed up for some 5K events in the next few months – the night run in March, Foam Fest in April, and the obstacle run in May. Starting March 4 I am joining the three-month TEAM Fitness plan – my left shoulder had been giving me some problems in January, but is feeling much better now so a couple more weeks of rest is probably a good plan.

Wednesday the roller coaster plunged when I learned my mother went to the ER with leg pain. X-rays showed old spinal fractures, and an MRI on Thursday showed some new ones. They aren’t looking at doing surgery yet, so it sounds like the treatment is rest and physical therapy… which she has been doing for the past several months after being hospitalized last summer, so what is this supposed to do that’s different?? I feel horrible and guilty and wondering what I can do to help – even though I know there really isn’t. I wish she didn’t have to go through this. I wish there was some way to justĀ fix it.

Even though it’s almost 10pm, I’m contemplating jumping on the treadmill for a while. Maybe it will help settle my mind. Tomorrow is dance class and the chance to get caught up on the four weeks of class that I’ve missed, tomorrow night is karaoke (and the return of NASCAR), and Sunday there is a dog-related event that I am going to. I have no idea where this roller coaster is going next…