Saturday, March 17, 2012

When you don't even recognise yourself

Let's just say that insane long hours at my new job + using sugar and chocolate to try and get through said long hours + barely time to train + underestimating how many calories I was overconsuming due to zero to minimal training + eating for comfort = bad!

I have gained a significant amount of weight and I don't even recognise my body anymore. I am no longer the fit and healthy sub-70kg I was at the end of 2011. I don't even want to write how much I weigh at the moment. It's embarassing. How I let it get to this stage I have no idea, but I guess my health and fitness moved from top priority to something that wasn't even ranked on the scale.

I began to use food as comfort instead of fuel and I convinced myself that I was "too tired" to train on the odd occasion I wasn't stuck at work. Life at the moment is full of change and I am not really coping. New job, new house, new location... I miss my friends and I miss my old lifestyle. Not training made me feel depressed and that started a vicious cycle! I felt depressed, so I didn't train... I didn't train so I felt even more depressed. On the odd occasion I wanted to train, I got stuck at work and didn't get home until it was time to go to bed and start all over again!

I dislocated my big toe 3 weeks ago  (and I suspect there was a small fracture associated with it - I didn't bother getting imaging done) and I used that as an excuse not to train. Since when do you need your toes to ride a bike? Since when do you need your big toe to lift weights?! I was kidding myself. I was unhappy, unhealthy and not doing myself any favours.

But something switched today. It's my only day off this weekend and I was tired. I felt depressed and all I really wanted to do was sleep in bed all day. As I was lying there, I thought about what life was like before I moved and I remembered how good things were. I felt great, looked great and was so much happier. I had goals that I was working towards. Life was amazing!

So I decided to stop feeling sorry for myself and to do something about it! I got up, found my running gear and hit the street. Wow! It felt TERRIBLE! I hadn't been running for about 3 months and it was like a slap in the face! I struggled to run faster than a slow jog and it seriously felt like I was carrying an 8kg bag of bricks. Because I was! The last time I had been for a run, I was about 8kg lighter and every stride I felt that extra weight. I was horrified. Of course I had seen it on the scales, seen it on my body... But to feel it impact on my ability to move was just such an eye opener. So I ran, and ran, and ran, and ran... After 5km I went home and then realised that I wasn't done yet. So I ran some more.... Another 5km. I pushed myself hard and made sure I ran at my usual pace despite the extra load.

On my return home, I felt absolutely amazing! I felt like myself again!!!! That feeling... Any runner would know what I am talking about... THAT is what has been missing from my life! It doesn't matter that I am in a new location, or a new job or around new people... That stuff isn't what makes me who I am... Running does. Being fit does. Being HEALTHY does.

I realise that I NEED to train to be myself and to be happy. I need it to function. I had gone from training at least 2 hours per day to nothing! Of course my mind and my body is going to react badly to that. But now I know that I need to make training a priority again, even if it means running on the treadmill before or after work at some ungodly hour!

I have a 15 hour shift tomorrow and I will be lucky to have time to even go to the bathroom. The temptation will be there to quickly grab a piece of cake to satisfy my hunger or to 'give me a kick' in the 12th hour of work. But tomorrow I will exercise before work, I will plan my meals and I will try to make time to eat them! I will NOT fill myself with food of no nutritional value in a futile attempt to give myself a 'sugar buzz'. I will look after myself so that I can look after my patients properly. I deserve it and they deserve it, too.

I'm not out of the woods yet though... I've decided I will be joining Round 2 of 12WBT 2012... I could use a little help.

1 comment:

Mons said...

Great post. Running really does change everything. Getting out there is the hardest step - you did it. Good luck!