Saturday, December 1, 2012

It's Time to Move On...

My entire perspective on life, my body, my nutrition and health has certainly changed since I first started this blog in 2007. Looking back now, I was so unfit and unhealthy but I made a decision to make my first few steps back into the land of fitness.

Nutritionally, I tried many different things in the last 5 years including Weight Watchers (hated that!) and Michelle Bridge's 12WBT, where I essentially starved myself down to 68kg while doing insane amounts of cardio workouts on a daily or multiple times per day basis! But I was still unhealthy. I was still eating foods that my body did not approve of and I felt sluggish and horrible after eating them, even though they fit into my 'allocated calories' for the day. Sure, it worked and got me to be really thin, but thin doesn't necessarily mean healthy. I was 'skinny fat'.

And then I discovered Paleo. I've done several posts on it now and the transition was gradual. For the past few weeks I have been 100% Paleo and I am never going back. My body is full of energy ALL the time with no fluctuations in blood sugar levels, so I never have my 3pm crash every day. I can eat and immediately train and I am never bloated. The food that I put into my body is healthy and nutritious and fuels my training well. I no longer count calories or weigh foods or fuss about anything other than whether I have had enough protein to support my muscles. And yet, I am losing body fat and gaining muscle like I never have before.

A huge part of that is from CrossFit and lifting heavy weights. From the moment I walked into the Box on my first day, I felt like I had come home. There is no other place I would rather be and on a daily basis I feel like I have trained harder in 20 minutes than I ever did doing 3 consecutive hours of cardio. I love being around like-minded people that don't look at me strangely when we discuss nutrition and training. On top of that, my body is changing and I love it! I am so much stronger and on a daily basis I am discovering things that my body is able to do that I never thought possible.

So for me, it feels like my journey to this point is at a close. My blog titled, "Get Off The Couch" speaks a lot about where I was 5 years ago when I went for that first run, scoring only 3.3 on the Beep Test! I am not sorry that it has taken me this long to discover this lifestyle, because I think the journey has made me into the person I am today. But I don't feel the need to write on this blog. It just isn't me anymore.

I have started a new blog about my journey into CrossFit and Paleo and I will continue to track my progress there.Thank you to everyone who supported me up to this point. I wish you all the best in your journeys.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Why Didn't I Do This Years Ago?!!!

I wish I had've known about Paleo lifestyle years ago. I feel absolutely incredible right now and have all the energy in the world to do whatever I want! I no longer feel flat and tired after I eat - I could go for a run even after a filling meal. On top of all of that, the food is just amazing - so fresh and delicious! I'm tasting things like it's the first time foods have ever passed my lips! I am eating foods that I never used to like and all my favourite fresh foods taste even more amazing than they used to.

I am eating to satiate my hunger - no more calorie counting and yet my fat percentage is dropping like nothing else while my lean body mass continues to grow. I am no longer training for hours at a time (chronic cardio!!), instead I am doing short under 45 minute sessions and my progress is amazing! 3 days ago I couldn't hold myself up on a chin-up bar and today I held myself with my chin over the bar for 10 seconds!

I am absolutely hooked on this lifestyle. I have told my friends and family and they have all been supportive. I don't even have ANY desire to touch non-Paleo food anymore. Even when I bake cookies or brownies for work (yes, I still bake because I enjoy it!), I don't even lick my fingers when a smear of cookie batter gets on them!

So the next step? I am really keen to do power lifting (squats/chest press/dead lift) and I've found a PT near me who also runs a CrossFit Box. I am going to book in to have a few 1-on-1 sessions with him to get my technique 100% before I start lifting heavy, with a view to join his Box in the near future. I am so excited! It's time to get STRONG! 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Paleo Heaven

This is dinner tonight...

Sustainable fished, wild caught Travali with a cucumber, lime and mango salsa, and a prawn, mango and walnut rocket salad.

It tastes sooooo gooooood!!

Lifting Heavy Makes Me Happy

It has taken me a lonnnnnnnng time to come to the realisation that my long distance running career is pretty much over. I have mourned the loss and really struggled for the most part of this year. A couple of weeks ago, I decided that I needed to find a new focus and I started looking into weight training. I've always loved BodyPump classes and I liked the sound of CrossFit and I'm now heading in that direction.

My lounge room now looks more like a gym than a place to invite visitors (unless of course they want to lift heavy things, too!). I have a chin-up bar, a barbell, dumbbells all ready and waiting when I get home from work! I absolutely LOVE weights training now and although it's not as good as a stress reliever, I love the feeling of really pushing through the pain and playing that mental game.  

I discovered there's a CrossFit gym near my house, but I really want to work on developing my upper body strength before I start going. My pushups are really terrible but they are coming along SO fast now that I am focusing on it. 

Since cutting out the majority of my cardio training, I have been putting on the muscle like nothing else! I've been noticing that I am able to keep upping my weights every week, whereas I used to be stuck at the same level for months at a time. The results I've been getting are fantastic! Beyond what I would've thought I could achieve in such a short time. 

My BodyPump weights are now (not including bar weight):
Squats: 20-25kg
Chest: 10kg 
Back: 12.5kg 
Triceps: 10kg 
Biceps: 12.5kg
Lunges: 15kg (due to knee pain)
Shoulders: FINALLY using a 2.5kg plate in each arm! For SO long I was struggling with 1.25kg! 

My lean body mass is now 60kg!! My measurements are the same as I was when I was 77.7kg in 2011, yet I weigh 83.2kg now! The difference is amazing! Given that I've only just started weight training, I am excited to think how much muscle mass I can gain and how high my lean body mass will get to! 

I think it's all largely due to my diet and the shift of focus from "losing weight" to just focusing on getting stronger. I'm now only really losing fat and gaining muscle, whereas last year and during 12WBT I was always losing fat AND muscle. It might be a slower road from a physical perspective (I don't know!?), but it's certainly much faster from a performance perspective. So what have I been doing? I have gone Paleo!

I have cut out all grains/dairy/legumes and most processed foods. I don't drink alcohol or eat anything loaded with sugar. And the result is that I feel AMAZING. I never crave sugary foods, never feel like binging on crap and I don't miss anything! I realise now that pasta/bread/potato was making me feel really heavy and gross even if it was a really small serving. Without it, I no longer feel like a complete sloth after I've had a meal! Paleo definitely agrees with me. 

So that's where I am at the moment. I am about to get a personal trainer to start powerlifting. I can't wait!!! 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

It's always a Tuesday

Something I've noticed from writing in my diary every meal is that I always struggle with my nutrition on Tuesdays!

Every week without fail, it's always a Tuesday night that I am wandering around the kitchen looking for 'second dinner'. The good part is that I am now recognising that it's a Tuesday thing and making sure that I am super-busy on Tuesday nights!!

And on that note - it's workout time!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Woo! They fit me again!

It's been a while since I've posted, I apologise. I'm now writing daily in a paper diary (so old school!) before every meal instead of writing much on my blog. I find that it really helps me with my mindset and working out whether I am actually hungry or whether I am reaching for food out of boredom or stress.

On the weight-loss front, I can tell you that if you purely looked at my weight, you'd probably think that I had gone backwards! I've posted about this before - where the numbers just don't show the whole picture.

I currently weigh 84.2kg but I'm the same size as I was when I was under 80kg. I fit into my size 12 pants (woohooo!!!) and I feel great! I still have a long way to go, but I am trying not to base things around weight - more on body fat percentage and measurements. I still want to lose about 6-8% body fat, so I have a little way to go yet.

My lean body mass is now at 58.7kg (up from ~56kg)! I have really put on the muscle in the last month - I have been doing BodyPump daily or second daily and the results have been fantastic! I increased my squat weight by 5kg yesterday and coped fine! Any heavier and I'm going to have trouble getting the weight onto my shoulders by myself!!! My chest/triceps/biceps have all gone up by 2.5kg. And my core is SO much stronger than it has been! It's all paying off. The definition in my arms particularly, are really coming back! I love it!

I still have the odd slip-up with my nutrition, but with my diary I am finding that I am making better choices and really analysing things. I do allow myself to eat a 'taste' of something if I want something sugary, but I don't go overboard and I'm finding this helps me feel less 'restricted'.

Meanwhile, I am looking forward to summer and Christmas! The holiday season (without much of a holiday - thanks work!)