Thursday, 25 February 2010

Ok, here’s what I don’t get. When you’re fat, nobody tells you that you are. When you lose weight, people initially encourage you, but then as you succeed with that continued weight loss, they admonish you and feel that they have the right to tell, command, order you to stop. People tell you that your continued efforts to maintain a healthy weight, your new body, your new found passion for health and fitness by being wise about what you eat is tantamount to disordered eating and that you need to stop it.

And THEN those same people spend half an hour chewing your ear off about how fat they feel and how they wish they had your will power. They say things like ‘all things in moderation’ and then post on facebook that they’ve eaten an entire box of chocolates! They tell you off for spending time at the gym and then say things like ‘I’m on a starvation diet for my holiday in 8 weeks’.

When you’ve lost weight and people notice, they feel within their rights to tell you ‘you look tired’, or ‘you’ve lost enough’ as if you yourself are not capable of determining such things.

When you’ve lost weight, people assume that you must be starving yourself, or subsisting on Special K, or SlimFast or Ryvita. Those same people claim to be ‘ on a diet’ and then facebook that they’ve eaten a small salad or a bowl of soup for their lunch and are now starving but will wait it out until dinner time.

This has been my experience this week.

I have been at a conference today of all my colleagues who work in my department. This was in excess of 300 people. Many of these people I haven’t seen for over a year. Several did not recognise me. Several did ‘double takes’. One particular individual who has a gastric band but tells everyone she developed a fast metabolism told me categorically not to lose anymore weight or I would ‘fall down a grid’.

In short, not one person had a positive comment to say – apart from one very lovely colleague who asked how I’d done it. Apparently I have become a weight loss/exercise evangelist of sorts because we were talking for aaaaaaages!

This is what I know to be true:

I have lost 40lbs.
I am fitter, healthier, leaner, more toned and motivated than I have ever been.
I am NOT eating disordered.
I do NOT starve myself.
I do NOT deprive myself of everything that I love and then binge in a moment of weakness.
I have found a way of eating that suits me.
I have found a place where I am happy in myself
I love exercise and count it as a priority in my life, but no higher a priority then friends and family.
My mental health is greatly improved
I am more joyful
I am more aware of my world and how I relate to it.


I CAN be and HAVE (in the past) been eating disordered
I CAN be prone to over-exercising


I am not there now! If only people could see behind the weight loss and see the good and significant psychological shift that has taken place in me. It’s taken an age to get here! A real battle and struggle!

I run because I love to run not because I am afraid of the calories I have consumed and must get rid of if I am to lose weight. I lift weights because I love the powerful feeling it gives me and how it sculpts my body, not because I am going for maximum calorie burn. I control what I eat by sticking to points, emphasising filling, clean foods and not overdosing on crap. I do not deny myself anything. Not denying myself any food/drink is not the same as giving in to temptation each and every day. Eating on ww means I continue to make healthy and sensible choices because I have gone too far to go back now and worked too hard. Plus I LIKE how my body feels and functions when it’s filled with health rather than utter sh*te.

I have been reflecting on external validation a lot this week and in particular what that means for me. I think I am someone who very much needs that external validation. I don’t mean compliments. I don’t mean to boost my ego. What I mean is, the picture of me in that green frock (last post) was at my dear friend Julie’s wedding. When I got dressed that morning I felt like I looked beautiful and slim and all ‘sex and the city’ for a fabulous occasion. I did not see the fat. When I compare it to a photograph of how I look now, I see it. I NEVER THOUGHT I WAS FAT. And sure, arguably I was never clinically obese etc butt his was my journey. I didn’t see what I had done to my body. I did not feel the hatred I expressed towards it in overfeeding and under-exercising it. It was a form of self harm. The worse about myself I felt, the more I ate.

I need that external validation in my life to reassure me. But it can only come from certain people. Friends are no good because (generally speaking) they never tell you when you’re fat and they are kind of obliged to tell you you’re hot and look good. Ditto for family members, ditto for significant others.

So, when people I respect tell me that I look good, it resonates and I feel confident and reassured, and this in turn helps quash the temptation to over do it, to just lose another half a stone, to just run another mile on top of everything else you’ve done today etc etc etc.

Last night at the gym I had run 5 miles outside, I then did BodyPump, I then swam a few lengths (about 20) to chill my legs out. As I was getting dressed I was (for the first time ever) brave enough in the changing room to stand in my underwear. I caught sight of myself and thought ‘you can go on holiday in April with the girls and be pleased with that body’. Almost immediately, that rational thought was replaced with ‘But you thought you looked ok last time you went on holiday, and look how you feel about those pics!’

Then I recalled ‘Perfect Gym Girl’ saying to me earlier that evening how good I was looking. I recall the yoga teacher saying my arms looked great. I recall my trainer saying that I am ‘definitely getting there’ in terms of changing body shape and tone and fitness. These are people whose opinions I respect, so it makes a difference. I know they’re not just bs-ing me.

I also remembered that this body just ran 5 miles and lifted some serious weights and does all I demand of it and then some.

And then I felt good.

So, despite all the haters today I choose to remember that what I have achieved is GOOD and not indicative of obsessive or negative behaviour.

L xoxo

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Before and Forever....and 40lbs inbetween....

'Nuff said, hey?!

Maintenance 101

So, I’ve had a week or so to come back down to earth after reaching the heady heights of goal. First of all, I need to say a huge THANKYOU to you all for your lovely comments on my getting-to-goal post last week. Quite simply, I could not have done it without you! Seriously. Blogging has been (and will continue to be) such a valuable tool for me. I’ve learnt so much through it and through ‘knowing’ you all! ThAnK YoU!

This first week and a bit of this elusive thing called ‘maintenance’ has been, well, odd. It isn’t actually that different from trying to lose weight, and yet it is entirely different....! I’m still counting my points and tracking and exercising and noting my hunger levels and trying to graze through the day and focus on filling foods and not eating processed crap. But somehow, the stakes seem higher! It’s like balancing on a tightrope. I worked so hard to get balanced on the tight rope, one false move could see me fall – ie the way I eat and control this maintenance malarkey could result in the scales going up or down. Whilst obviously I’m not too bothered if they go down, I have promised myself that I will do this sensibly and healthily. I STILL WILL freak out if they go up - that's just a given. I'm trying to be less strict with myself but it ain't easy!

My first weigh in as a Gold Member last Saturday showed that I had managed to stay the same. This is good, no?! There was a little frisson of disappointment at not having lost weight after 7 consecutive weeks of doing so, but I soon reminded myself that I have a different set of expectations now. It’s almost like starting again.

I sent the following email to Caro, my Motivational Match Up Partner courtesy of MizFit and lovely Jen Prior Fat Girl, on Monday:-

“Now I'm at goal maintenance must surely be about balancing weight and activity with real life. The hard slog is done - ie the getting to goal, but now the consistent approach is needed. I've prioritised this above pretty much everything else for the past year and especially in recent months, but now I feel like I can give myself permission to slow down a little...this in itself is a big revelation, but the immediate automatic thought that follows it is 'this is what happened last time and you gained all the weight and then some back again' !! Abject terror of being fat again will keep me on plan but the pace I was going at is not sustainable for every single day of the rest of my life !

So I feel a bit at a loss really. I also feel....scrutinised? People notice and comment on what I am eating more, people notice me and comment more, I find it weird, disconcerting and downright rude in some cases. !!

I've spent so long wanting to get 'there' and now I'm 'there' it's weird! I feel as if I have to reassess my relationships with people, my wardrobe, my attitudes to people, my life, my goals.....very very odd feeling! “

That pretty much sums up where I’m at with the maintaining thing! It’s like starting again and is just as much a psychological shift as a physical one.

On a practical note I upped my points from 18 to 21 per day. I should be on 24 according to the book you get but it also suggests a slow increase, maybe one or two points a week to see how your weight and body fares on that increase. It’s all a matter of experimentation I guess. I suppose my experiment was successful this week judging by weigh in, but I desperately want not to live week-by-week from weigh in to weigh in and to be able to do this instinctively rather than by counting. I want to be able to let go of the control enough not to have to track and to use the tools I have to monitor my intake and activity. Can that happen do you think? I really admire the Gold Members that I weigh at our meeting a couple of times a year or every month. I would love to be in that place, but right now I’m just learning – a whole different kind of learning than when I was trying to lose. There’s a lot of it that’s about (for me at least) accepting that I’m DONE with losing weight, and resisting the temptation to go further. I’m not anywhere near skinny and have 8lbs before I hit the minimum weight for my height, so I’m not in the danger zone or anything but accepting that the losing thing is now over and trying to stay on track and be healthy is the priority. Of course, gaining all the weight back freaks me out and helps me to err on the side of caution.

I really don’t want to lose my impetus or motivation, but I also can’t realistically sustain the pace I was going at – I miss my life!! It was all well and good for the final ‘push’ to get to goal but now I need to be realistic. I need to figure out a routine that works for me. Of course, I won’t be spending 2+ hours in the gym every night as the Spring comes (no sign of it yet though – still bloomin’ snowing!) and as the nights get lighter – because I’ll be able to whizz home, throw on my running gear and hit the pavement! I can’t wait for that! I’ve never been into running when it’s Spring or summer – I’ve never really been into running before ever so it’s a whole new journey to be excited for!

Yesterday I lost the plot a bit with eating. The reason? I was annoyed at the weather. Yes it was THAT irrational. I sabotaged myself with pitta and houmous and a few glasses of wonderful Sauvignon Blanc on top of a day’s healthy and filling eating because I was pissed off. ERROR! How stupid is that!! I haven’t done that in yonks! So today I need to hop back on it and be strict with myself – not to mention get my backside in the gym! Yesterday evening is exactly what I used to do 3 or 4 times a week! No wonder I gained flipping weight! Ridiculous. I imagine I’ll have gained this week at weigh in – all the more reason to keep counting those points. I am an idiot!

Maintenance hey? Who’d have thunk it’d be trickier than the weight loss in the first place!??!

Love L xoxo

Saturday, 13 February 2010


Get IN!!! I bloody well DID IT!!!!! This morning's weigh in? 9 stone 13.5lbs! I lost 1lb which takes me under my goal of 140 to 139.5lbs (63.2kg).

Here I am flashing my Gold Membership Pack for WW. I am so excited! Cannot believe I did it. Feels very weird. More thoughts to come, but for now I'm just going to buzz!!!
Hope you're all having a fabulous weekend...I AM!!!
Heaps of love
Lizzie xoxo

Saturday, 6 February 2010

Take THAT, weird voices in head!

So after yesterday morning's teetering-on-the-brink-o'-madness (again), I was very quickly set right by (a) my own good sense and determination and (b) you wonderful people who commented and tweeted/texted/emailed/BBM'd me. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU.

I am pleased to report that the crazy episode has now passed and I am FIIIINE.

Yesterday I ate:

B -40 porridge with skimmed milk and an apple
L - 20 cashews, another apple, vegetable soup and a ww peanut bar
Snacks - a banana, more cashews and 3 litres of water
D - salmon and grilled veggies with a tsp of philly mixed in

19 points. DONE. Didn't have to force myself, it was a normal day. PHEW!

I worked out with Chris at 6pm....first time in all of 11 months of seeing him that I haven't enjoyed it. Wasn't at all in the right frame of mind to have my butt kicked. I was just so tired. Memo to me: don't do 2 classes and run the NIGHT BEFORE A PT SESSION. Duh! What a giant doofus I am ! He said, quite rightly, that I KNOW how hard I have to work on a Friday night so there's no use being knackered - especially since I am paying for the privilege! So this Thursday I'm just going to either do yoga or swim, that's it. No weights. No running. And then I will be much more up for it on Friday night. Excellent plan.

I bet your wondering how weekly weigh in went? Well, suffice it to say that I am pleased. Again. ANother 2lbs off! WOOT WOOOOOOOOOOOT!!!

That takes me to a grand total of 39lbs lost (17.69kg, 2 stone 11lbs)!! This morning I weighed in at 10 st 0.5lbs (63.7kg, 140.5lbs)


I never ever thought I'd be there so soon after getting to 'old' goal. Weird. Still not entirely sure where to set 'new' goal. I think 140lbs is fine, or just under. I'm not sure I could (or should) attempt any less. 9 stone 6 is my 'minimum' at 5,8 tall - but this doesn't take into account my body composition or anything so I figure I might as well set goal at 140lbs and then use my monthly weigh ins with Chris to monitor changes.

But that all depends on this week really. I'm only in work 3 days (THANK GOD! - after last week I thought I would go insane!!!! 4 nights out of 5 working till 8pm is NOT GOOD!) so I'll be able to really plan and cook and track and exercise at different times of the day rather than cramming it all in to one evening.

NSV's this week have included

- getting a mention on the Two Fit Chicks and a Microphone podcast!! Ep 8 available now! It's REALLY FUNNY hearing something I wrote read out in lovely dietgirl's dulcet tones! If you haven't heard it yet then you can find the links and all the info here Wise words from 2 fabulous gals!

- being able to do a set of lateral arm raises whilst kneeling unsupported on the Swiss ball!!! How good is that!!!! Flipping well KILLS your thighs but such a challenge for core stability.

- I've focused on speed work this week with running rather than long runs (mainly because I've been so pushed for time) so I am pleased to report that my 5k time is now 25 mins on average, it was 31-35 mins so that feels pretty damn splendid to know. As does the realisation that I can just simply run for 3o minutes+ these days and not want to die. It's weird yet fascinating and holds more appeal and significance than a figure on the scale!

- I got totally chatted up in a bar on Saturday night! I know I am a married woman - and very happily so - but it was a teeny tiny bit thrilling to realise that I was being hit on! HAhahaha! Is that totally shallow?! I can't decide. Nor can I decide whether to be offended or not that now I have lost weight men seem to notice me more - men that I know too! - than when I was bigger. Shocking really. My personality hasn't changed! I'm still me. Or am I? This is something I need to have a think about and update later, right now I'm too happy for a big deep and meaningful thought process!!

It's Saturday afternoon, beautiful blue sky, still cold but feeling very Spring-like - I'm all alone in my beautiful flat, Rich is watching Liverpool vs. Everton or some such other earth shatteringly important football thingy, so I've got a few hours to I haven't done that in so long! I'm not going to exercise one iota today - I promised I would take a rest day, and I need to. So lovely friends, I'm gonna dash, have a lovely weekend dudes and see ya in the week!

Much love

L xoxo

Friday, 5 February 2010

Before I chicken out...

.....I need to say this.

Friends, today is a day not unlike many I have had before. Thankfully said days occur few and far between now. Today, however, is one of them. Today is a day where it is difficult to eat. So enchanted am I with this suddenly-visibly-new body of mine, so delighted with muscle tone and angles and leanness and bones and flat stomach that as I stand here, in the kitchen, to eat my porridge made with skim milk, that little, almost-forgotten voice that lives deep within pipes up...."You don't have to eat that..." Just a hint, a suggestion. Nothing too drastic. But nevertheless it is there.
Here's what I know:

Last night I did BodyPump, ran 4 miles and did 90 minutes of yoga.

This morning my body needs fuel.

I am tired and fatigued. This morning my body needs fuel.

I'm seeing my trainer this evening. This morning my body needs fuel.

If I think of it like that, it seems easier.

Just needed to get that off my chest....


Wednesday, 3 February 2010


Minds out of the gutter please people!

Just stopping by in the middle of what is turning out to be a thoroughly BONKERS week in the busyness department, to say hello and update you.

I just ate ONE cheese Dorito. I feel cheap.

So after the cocktails/Maccies/Diet Coke debacle that was the weekend, I am pleased to report being back in healthy town. There has been much chugging of water, much eating of vegetables, fish, lean meat and porridge and cashew nuts. There has been exercise: specifically speed work and weights on Monday and 5k and BodyPump yesterday. Today it is lonnnng run day (well, long for me, at any rate) which WAS going to be outside but it's BLOODY WELL SNOWING AGAIN so it'll have to be the treadmill. Never mind, I have the all new Two Fit Chicks and a Microphone podcast to listen to AND a few newly downloaded Glee cast tracks. God bless the iPod.

Apart from that, there's nowt much else to report really. Things are ticking on nicely! Hopefully the work week should calm down a bit now and I'll be off to yoga Thursday night and then my PT session to kick off the weekend.

This is a really crap post - SORRY!!! I really will be back at the weekend after weigh in with some juicier topics for discussion!

Until then amigos mios,

L xoxo