I don’t think I have written about new things for a while…and this one is excellent!!
Yesterday was Sunday,that isn’t the new thing. For a long time I have had a Pilates class on a Sunday, that isn’t the new thing either. The new thing is that at yesterdays Pilates class, instead of being a participant, I was the teacher!
OK I was a cover teacher filling in for Sarah who was busy having a birthday.
OK I didn’t cover it with Pilates I covered it with my own made up blend of core and conditioning work.
Those things are not the point! The point is, it was a real class at a real leisure centre and I was in charge!
It went ok, the class participants are mainly middle aged plus and not into jumping about so I had to plan a calm class that focused on core strentgh and “toning”. I spoke to a few afterwards and they apparently didn’t hate it, so that is ok 🙂 Not hating it counts as a win in my books 😀
So this was a year ago!! I can hardly believe it! It seemed appropriate for a Throwback Thursday!
I may have just ever so slightly passed my Level 3 Personal Training Assessment this weekend 😀
By ever so slightly I mean completely!
So that is it, I can now train people 😀 officially and for money and suchlike!
I have to finish my nutrition before I get my full diploma but that is in progress 😀
It was OK as assessments go, I didn’t do some things as well as I know I can, so I came away a little frustrated with myself and feeling rather flat.
However, that doesn’t matter…what matters is I passed and I know what I didn’t do well so I will do better next time.
What also matters is that I know it was the assessment situation putting me off and not my knowledge or ability 😀
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So, I am still doing this, I admit to have missed one or two days of exercise but, as I have mentioned a time or two, there are days when you need to rest. Knowing when to rest is as important (if not more important) than exercising despite being achy/tired/ill! To avoid the tedious listing of […]
Or should I say the problems…
Me and food have a complicated relationship, and I haven’t really gone into it much on this blog because I have been all about the fitness and all about moving forward into a new healthy lifestyle.
Don’t get me wrong, I am still all about that.
But I thought it was time to tell you about some realities relating to me and my general diet and attitude towards food, and a little bit about where I think it has come from.
What made me have this thought right now, I hear you ask…
Well it came from a twitter update I made on Tuesday and a conversation I had with a work colleague on the same day.
The picture was this one:
That was me (left), 3 months before I started this blog and that is me now (right). I am very proud of it because it shows me how far I have come but I also keep it as a warning to myself of what I can do to myself when I don’t pay attention. I can be quite self-destructive when I put my mind to it.
Or should I say when I take my mind off it. Because this weight gain was a result of mindless overeating pure and simple!
Which brings me to the conversation I had with a work colleague. It was about how she feel she is putting on weight and can’t seem to stop. And I pointed out that constant snacking and eating unhealthy food can lead to this, and showed her my picture. To which she said..
“well that isn’t just because you were eating too much is it”
I had to point out that it was exactly because of that. What ever the reasons behind the eating, generally, eventually excessive over eating leads to me circa 2012!
All this lead me to start thinking about (over analysing probably) the reasons why I have crazy crazy eating patterns and why I still, if I am not paying close attention, could eat the entire contents of the sweet shop! (I don’t do that any more I promise…but the point is, I could).
I will start with a bit of ancient history, in the hopes of attempting to explain where all this started. So…
Long long ago (in a galaxy far far away…) I was a tall skinny child. A tall skinny child who could eat for england! Real food, I was not into junk food or sweets really…but boy could I eat! Then I became a teenager and the ability to eat myself silly and not put weight on deserted me along with my height.
Ok…not exactly my height, I didn’t get shorter but I did stop growing…at age 12 and developed the normal metabolism of a teenager. So I put on a little weight. Not a lot, I was never fat, or even overweight, but I was bigger than I was used to be but I was healthy and I exercised, I cycled 6 miles a day to school after all. I honestly can’t remember if I was bothered about it at first but I do know that when I was 15 I was applying for military sponsorship and a girl in the year above me applied for the same thing and was told she was overweight. Now, I was smaller than her, but this fact passed me by and as soon as I heard that, I made the promise to myself that I would no under any circumstances be told that.
So I stopped eating.
(I don’t think this was the only start point or the only reason for my food issues but it is the most substantial single event in the process.)
I don’t mean I stopped eating altogether in one hit…that would have been a) impossible and 2) noticed immediately by everyone around me!
I mean I started to restrict what I was eating.
I cut out breakfast, that was easy, I just got up later and said I would be late for school if I didn’t leave then.
I cut down on lunch too, that was easy too, I took the money my parents gave me for school lunch, bought the smallest cheapest thing on the menu (one jacket potato about 100g cooked if that costing 10p) and tell all my friends that I was doing it to save money.
I cut down on dinner…this was harder but
I took advantage of the fact that both of my parents worked and by the time 1 was in the sixth form all three of us ate at different times and different things. I often told my parents that I had eaten already when I hadn’t some times I would have chocolate on the way home to keep my going. Sometimes I would eat a sandwich or something small with the explanation that I had already had my main meal at school.
At weekends it was different, if I was in, I ate whatever one of my parents was eating so I was getting food. I wasn’t cutting it out altogether, but looking back now I can see a good deal of craziness!
In the end, I didn’t get the RAF sponsorship…I got turned down for having short arms and…drumroll…for being underweight. I was about 7.5 stone (105lbs). You would think that this would be a wake up call for me but it wasn’t!
At this point I though food was the only thing I had control of. The thing I had wanted to do my whole life (be a RAF Pilot) was now never going to happen and I was a teenager which is when everything feels out of control anyway. I did some crazy things and thought I had made my parents hate me (I hadn’t!). So I continued this meal skipping, food restricting lifestyle I had got into and told myself and everyone else that it wasn’t a problem!
This lead me to a cycle of putting weight on at the start of Uni followed by a return to stopping eating when I wanted to lose it again… this cycle continued and spiraled into unpleasant purging techniques which I could only keep up for a short time. It continued until I got married, when I put weight on, but stopping eating became a lot harder…
I ended up binge eating to a large degree then joining weight watchers then binge eating and comfort eating again and again and never really fixing my issues with food and control. (weight watchers is an awesome way of restricting your calorie intake…why have all 28 (or whatever) points when you can save some up and live on 20 or 19 or 15…
I have heard people say that this sort of behaviour will break your metabolism. I used to believe it because it was easier to believe that I had a broken metabolism than it was to believe I could stop doing what I was doing to myself. It isn’t true.
Except extreme cases you can’t break your metabolism long-term. You can however, break your psychological attitude towards food. You can set yourself up with deep-rooted self-deception techniques which allow you to eat 4 or 5 times the calories needed for life while still telling yourself and others that it is ok and you are ok!
I hate to say it but these techniques are still very present in my brain. This is why I have to be really careful when I am sad, or stressed. This is why I have to be careful when professional type people recommend diets to me which cut out food groups or restrict calories drastically.
This is why I am telling you all of this. I am using this as a self check mechanism to make sure I am never going down that road again!
This is why I am so against anything that doesn’t teach about healthy choices and lifestyles!
And, above all, this is why I am so proud of that picture at the top!
So proud of that picture just there…
I did that in a healthy way!
I didn’t starve, or purge, or do anything crazy. I paid attention, I ate healthily about 85% of the time and I exercised!
I have to point out that during all of that food restriction and binge eating, I was never diagnosed with an eating disorder, and I don’t believe I really had one but I definitely had aspects of one (or several)
I managed to fix myself, but I don’t believe that is in any way possible for people who have real eating disorders. If anyone is reading this who thinks they might have an eating disorder, or is struggling with any of this things I was doing then I highly recommend getting help.
This is a good place to start:
yes well…I know I *may* have mentioned it once or twice…but I feel the need to tell you all again!
Way back in march when the half marathon I did put me off running (almost) forever and I finished the enforced running training that entailed. I promised myself that I was going to dedicate more if my exercise time to picking up heavy things and putting them down again repeatedly in a controlled manner.
In face the only thing that got me through parts of that half marathon was that promise… I told myself I never had to run again and it was going to be all lifting all the time!
Well…I have finally got around to making good on that promise.
I have told you about the scary gyms I have been trying out, and the one I am using at the moment is actually so scary that after 8 weeks of use I am still not 100% sure that I would go in without a trainer. (I’ll talk about that a little more later)
So I finally found a place that has a lot of heavy thing just waiting to be picked up. I also found a person to tell me what to pick up and when.
All good so far…
I have been doing high rep hypertrophy training which is awesome for both fat burning and building muscle. My sessions have mainly been based around one or two body parts with a couple of foundation sessions and I have been doing 4 sets of 12 reps of every exercise I do.
ok…I know that 12 reps is not really high reps as such, but it really feels like it, especially when you are doing 4 sets! It has made me realise how much time i spend in the strength rep range (5-8 reps) and that I really should vary my training a little!
The up shot of all of this is, I am starting to not hate 12 reps! I think that means my muscular endurance is improving (yeay!) and I appreciate the fact that it is working, I am starting to notice differences in body shape doing this in conjunction with mostly clean healthy heating…
the real problem now, is making myself do it on my own. I can’t keep on having 2 trainers it is silliness and I love what I do with Matt too much to stop that…
So…here comes the bit I said I would talk about later…this is later…
I need to decide if I am a brave enough bear to go into this new gym all on my own.
Ridiculous as it sounds after all this time and all the new things I have tried, I am still unsure about walking into a gym and doing a work out.
A work out that I know I can plan, I have a qualification that says I know what I am doing and everything, and yet I am still scared.
I am annoyed that I am scared by it but there is just something about the gym that sometimes makes me feel uncomfortable. Not always, sometimes I get offered coffee and chatted too by one of the other people there, but generally speaking the vast majority of people there have not made eye contact with me. Or if they have there has been a blank facial expression in response to my smile… I can’t help it…I smile when I make eye contact with people because it is friendly…I even do it on the street!
OK…I am not expecting a huge warm welcome and I appreciate that people just want to get on with their workout but I don’t think a facial expression is too much to ask…
That is not the real problem, the real problem is the unconscious intimidation. I havenot got amazing upper body strength yet. I am working on it but it is not as good as my lower body strength (40kg 1rm bench press). The last time I was in there, with a trainer, there was a group of men all big (well it is a bodybuilder gym) and probably in their 40 or 50s and they looked at the bench set up with my weights (about 30kg) and started taking the mickey out of each other saying that was their new weight to use. The implication being that it was far too light a weight to bother with.
Ok so giving them the benefit of the doubt, this wasn’t actually aimed at me, and it most likely was too light a weight for them to get much benefit from. However it made me feel quite stupid. I appreciate that this wasn’t their intention, but it wasn’t a friendly welcoming atmosphere.
So the question is am I ever going to get brave enough to go in on my own? If I don’t walk in on my own am I just allowing gender stereotyping and sexism to continue? Shouldn’t I challenge it by working out despite them?
I’ll keep you posted…