I’ve been starring at my blinking cursor for a bit now, trying to figure out how to start this even though I’ve written this post a 100 times in my head already. I think I’m confused about where I want to go with this because of my posts from the last few days. My last post, Weight, Health & Supplements I summarized what I had been up to from May to October 2014. I’d lost 12lbs up to that point and had an upcoming appointment with my doctor. In my mind, Phase 1 started after that appointment with my doctor, not back in May when I finally started losing some weight. I was so afraid that only the pills were helping me that it didn’t feel like I had any part or control in what was happening. In any case, I should at least consider it a pre-phase 1 and not discount it completely. It’s a journey and I get that now.
Which brings me to what happened October 2014. I was beating myself up. Feeling like I had no part in what I had lost so far and feeling so afraid that I would gain it all back. It felt like all these magical elements had lined up just so and if I changed anything in my day to day, that it would all stop and I’d gain the weight back. I felt completely powerless. My doctor assured me that 2lbs a month was something and even though it wasn’t as much as I wanted to lose, it was a step in the right direction. I try not to cry in her office, but there’s something about her that just reduces all my walls to nothing and I can’t help baring my soul to her. With waterworks (LOL). I told her that I felt like I would sabotage myself, as this was my usual, because I wasn’t sure if I deserved to be happy. I love my doctor. She’s amazing. She’s amazing because she knows when to say, you need to get help from x, y, z…and that’s what she said in that moment. She told me she supports me, but the number of times I’ve come into her office crying about similar things, means I need more help in that department than she can give me. So she recommended a trauma counsellor that she really liked. It was this recommendation that saved me in ways I didn’t even realize I needed saving, but more on this later.
My doctor strongly emphasized one fact that made the biggest difference in my weight loss journey. It was the fact that I had to exercise everyday. She wanted me to walk 15 mins everyday. Just walking. And just 15 mins. But everyday. She told me that the supplements were one thing, but the only thing that really responded to insulin resistance was exercise. And it had to be regular. I stressed to her that I had worked out so hard in the summer before I got injured…that I I had been in my home gym at least 3 times a week for a month and lost nothing. She told me that instead of looking at things in terms of months, I would have to look at it in years. That losing weight when you’re insulin resistant is incredibly hard, but that if I walked just 15 mins a day, everyday, I would see a change. Eventually.
I left feeling defeated in a lot of ways. I trusted my doctor and would do what she said, but how would walking (OMG, walking?!) help me lose weight when crazy tabata workouts and ruuuuuuniiiinnnnnng wasn’t?! It was that defeated feeling that let me get out of my own way. Sounds backwards, but that’s what happened.
Once upon a time I was a nationally ranked tennis player and good at many other sports that I played through high school and college. I was a great athlete and the mindset that helped me accomplish what I did athletically back in the day, was now holding me back. I couldn’t do a workout without pushing myself to my very limit. I couldn’t just do half of what I wanted to do…I had to do it all. And I couldn’t sustain that. Or stay injury free by trying to work at that level. I repeated that cycle over and over and over again.
After that appointment, I finally gave up my own pride and ego to do what the doc said. Around the same time I had noticed authors that I’m friends with on Facebook working out and looking good (“Laura Kaye persevering”, “Alpha Cardio? Huh, what? You’re sweaty though…that’s probably good.”, “Working out together? With other authors? At a con? Soooo cool!”. They kept tagging their workouts as #T25 (you can can buy the first round DVD’s here) and I just didn’t get what that was. An author thing? A workout program…what?! Tell me!!! Then I started digging into their other posts and found stuff like this: “Laura Kaye kicking butt”, “Carrie Ann Ryan, too?!”, “Tiffany King was being motivated by Laura too and she’s doing it!” and I was like…wait. My people…my reader/writer/author people are all doing this. I can do it too!
If my doctor wanted me to only walk 15 mins a day, I’d give her 25 mins of #T25. But I’d half-ass it. Remember how I was feeling defeated? Well if walking everyday was gonna help me, and these workouts seemed like way more work than walking, I was just gonna give them 45% effort.
And that’s what I did. I started officially in the beginning of November. I followed the modifier and just did what I could without really pushing myself. The idea of 25 mins of my day to accomplish what my doctor said would help me and I don’t even have to try very hard? Sounds great to me!
The thinking that helped me:
1. Break it down into baby steps
2. Don’t stress about it
4. Make it easy
It was all of those things that got me going. Just 25 minutes a day, mindlessly following what this guy was telling me. One day at a time, a 25 minute workout a day. There was something about the 25 minutes, not 30, or 45…but 25…that just seemed so doable. Like baby steps.
Putting my pride aside meant I could just be me. I wasn’t the athlete I was years ago. I couldn’t train for 4 hours on the tennis court and then run 6 miles for a cool down afterwards. I just couldn’t. But it was okay, because all I was supposed to do was walk. It took the stress out of the whole process.
Then there was the fact that I could workout in my living room, our home gym, my office, or my bedroom…wherever really. It didn’t require equipment or lots of space. When I first started I didn’t even really change into “workout” clothes. I’m a SAHYPWM (stay at home yoga pants wearing mommy) so it wasn’t much of a stretch (har har), but it was one step I didn’t think about. Just turn the TV on and get it done. So it became easy…
Eventually I got into the habit of working out everyday and it became my new normal. I even added yoga regularly into my week (I’m addicted now, so expect a yoga post soon). The key for me was that I built up to that slowly. Any other way and I’d probably have given up.
I’ve had challenges and ups and downs since then, but I’ve stayed mostly consistent. In November I lost 9lbs, December 6lbs, January gained and lost the same 5lbs so 0 actually loss, February was the same, and now March I’m down 4.5lbs for a grand total of 34.5lbs.
In January and February I had some challenges, but I think I’ve overcome them. More on that later.
Bottom line: If you’re thinking about getting in shape, stop thinking. Make it easy for yourself and just do something that makes you move. Something easy! The rest will come!
If you’ve been struggling, or overcoming, or challenging yourself to be better — tell me about it in the comments below! I love to hear what’s working and what’s not…it encourages me to do better myself and help someone else if I can!