Saturday, August 18, 2012

It's Getting Real!!!!

So I've been meaning to write more often as my competition gets closer but I haven't been doing a very good job. Things are coming along. As I posted in my last post, I believe, I decided I needed to stop being so dependent on the scale. Well this week I let go completely of the bondage that the scale had me trapped in. I weighed in for my trainer Monday, and I'm not gonna lie, the scale was calling to me every morning to weigh myself, but I resisted. I made it all the way to Friday when I had to weigh in for my trainer. While I was happy to see that the scale had gone down 1 and a half pounds from last Friday, I have to say because I haven't been weighing myself I have decided to use the mirror and pictures to gauge my progress. And I have to say, what a difference it has made in my outlook. I was being obsessive, weighing in multiple times a day, and what did that do for me? Just make me frustrated and discouraged. By letting go of that obsession I have started looking in the mirror, at my arms, at my shoulders, at my abs (which are finally starting to come in), at my quads, at my hammies, at my back, and I feel like this week I have seen the most visual progress so far. My carbs did drop just a tad and my cardio upped a bit, but it is all gradual and I'm feeling great. Still have good energy level most days. Though at night I do tend to crash, but considering I'm up as early as I am, go to the gym, then work, then gym, by the time I get home, it just makes sense that my body is exhausted.
One thing that I'm extremely proud of is the way my back is coming in. The figure category is all about the lat spread, v-taper and symmetry, and I got the lat spread and the v-taper so that is pretty exciting for me. Have a lot of work to do on the lower body, but I'm told that will happen in the final weeks. So I'll just keep eating on plan and working my butt off at the gym, twice a day most days.

Oh, so I totally just realized that I forgot to mention, I GOT MY SUIT!!!!!! Oh my goodness. I am absolutely in love with it! It is such a beautiful suit, a gorgeous green color, with just enough bling, not too much but just enough for this girl who doesn't do a whole lot of bling... I have to tell you about the day it came.
So I had been watching the tracking number that the gal I bought it from had sent me and on the day it arrived, of course it was raining. So after work I rushed home just wanting to see it in person. I brought it inside and knelt down and took a deep breath. This is it, this is my suit, this is making it real!!!! I slowly slit the tape and the edges with the scissors and opened the box and stopped and just looked at it for a minute. Another deep breath. Took it out of the box and spread it out on the floor. OMG, it's so beautiful, ok Ami, go get your cardio done, you can try it on when you get home. So I went to the gym and got my cardio in, so extremely excited. Afterwards got home and all I could think about was, OMG, what if it doesn't fit, what if it doesn't fit. The girl I bought it from had a stage weight of 105 and I KNOW that there is no way I will even be close to that. The suit felt sacred, I didn't feel worthy to put it on. So I continued with my nightly routine, doing my dishes, preparing my food for the next day, just the usual, all the while going around in my head about whether or not I should try it on...I wanted to but I was scared...
Finally I finished everything and just sat down and looked at my suit and took a deep breath. Ok, I'm just gonna do it. So my heart was pounding, butterflies in my stomach. Deep breaths. Put on the bottoms, wow, butt hanging out. Put on the top, how the heck does this connect? Got it figured out, heart pounding and looked in the mirror....and... I could not stop smiling! Wow! amazing!!!! It is so beautiful! It actually fits me! I'm really doing this! This is going to happen! I'm going to walk across that stage, all I could do was just stare at myself. I took a few pictures so I could show a few people. But wow, what a moment. At that moment I just could not believe how far I have come. Who would have thought 5 years ago that I would be at this point. I know I never would have guessed. What a feeling. That moment was one I will never ever forget. Putting on my first figure suit!
My gorgeous suit!!!

Today was my first posing clinic. My coach has worked with me a little with posing at each check in and I have been taking my heels and practicing at the gym so I feel like I'm getting a pretty good grasp on the judged poses. It was great to meet a few other girls who are going to be competing alongside me. There is just that bond there. We went through poses, transitions, and a little with the T-walk but not a whole lot since that part is no longer judged. So exciting, it's coming and it's getting REAL!!!!
Oh also had my refeed today had some amazing banana "ice cream" post workout. Definitely highly recommend it! All it is is sliced up bananas, frozen and then blended in a blender, I added a little protein powder as I blended it and then stirred in a no pudge brownie and frozen pb2. It was absolute amazing!!!!! My next part of the refeed meal was pumpkin pancakes made with pumpkin, oat flour, egg whites, a little greek yogurt, some pumpkin pie spice and a little stevia and baking powder topped with some Waldon Farms Syrup. Nom nom.

my banana "ice cream"

After the posing clinic came home and put on my new size 3 jeans that I had bought last weekend. I'm just loving this whole process. Contest prep is not easy, but I have to say I love it. I love the challenge, the having to push myself beyond anything i've ever done before! I just LOVE it!
my new jeans!!!!

I have my next check-in with my trainer on Tuesday. So excited to see how much I've progressed in the last 3 weeks. I've been giving it my absolute all and I don't plan on backing down one bit!!!!
7 weeks to go!!!!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

What a Rollercoaster Ride


Oh my. Here lately I have been feeling such a whirlwind of emotions. So many feelings of ups and downs. I have been lonely, I have felt like crying, I have felt like I have been failing, I have fallen, I have felt like I am backtracking, I have felt tired, I have wondered if this is worth it, but I have not given up.

Loneliness has been a huge part of this journey as of late. I don't really have much free time, and what free time I do have I just want to relax, so I haven't had much of a social life whatsoever.

Another thing that I have been doing is spending way to much time on the scale, which has really messed with my head. I have found this to be a huge mind-F*** and I have found that whether or not I realize it I totally subconsciously believe that my progress is dependent on the scale. Which is frustrating when my cycle has been outta whack and been causing me to retain water for the last 2 weeks, ugh.

Yesterday I just felt so down, so miserable, tired, sorry for myself. And today, total oposite, positive,  happy, energetic, ready to take on the world. What a rollercoaster of emotions.

Yesterday after feeling super discouraged with my weigh-in I went and talked to my trainer on my break and he told me to keep going. He said whenever I doubt my progress to look in the mirror, and I think for me relaly that means I need to look at my progress pics, because what I see in the mirror is not reality. When I look in the mirror I see my flaws, I see how far I have to go before I look like one of the pros. But really I need to enjoy this process. If I compare myself know to what I looked like 6 months ago let alone, 5 years ago when I was almost 200 pounds, I have to admit to myself that I have come a long way. That my hard work has not been in vain. I need to look in the mirror, look at my pictures and be proud. Everyone says I'm right on track, everyone says that these last 2 months I will see the most changes. Especially the last few weeks before the show.

I need to stop worrying about being ready and just keep doing my best. Keep my attitude positive, my eyes off the scale and eye on the prize, just doing my personal best. I don't have to be THE best, I just have to be MY best. And you know what, that I promise you. I will be the best I can be! And I am going to be damn proud of myself when I strut my stuff in my sexy heels and gorgeous suit! Just watch me!

Photo: Yours seems blurry??? Here is another copy
This is from 12 weeks out to 9 weeks out.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Nothing Will Stop Me!

goals... I need to re-read this EVERY morning!

Well here I am at just over 10 weeks out and I have to say, I'm exhausted. Since the beginning of last week was officially 12 weeks out I started taking a fat burner under the direction of my trainer and last week my energy was great. Got through my workouts, strength is still increasing, feeling great. However the end of last week I found that I would get home from my second gym session in the evening and my body would be just utterly exhausted. The same goes for this week. I have had awesome workouts Monday and Tuesday and then come home and just CRASH! Yesterday morning, I woke up at 3:30 to go to the bathroom and found that I could not get back to sleep cuz I was so freaking hungry. Needless to say I was utterly exhausted last night and actually was asleep by 10, which is really good for me. However 4:15 rolled around this morning and I got up and at em like usual but holy crap am I worn out! I struggled through my workout this morning and I can tell my body is just worn out, but I pushed through it. Snuck in a 10 minute nap on my 30 min lunch break, which was nice but def not long enough. Back to the gym tonight though for more cardio. Next Thursday are my next progress pics and I'm really excited for them and measurements. I can tell my body is really starting to lean out. Definately have some more definition coming out in my shoulders and arms and my stomach is slowly getting leaner as well as the scale slowly but seemingly consistently going down.
Another thing I noticed with the fat burner is it is helping to manage my hunger. Before starting it, my appetite was seemingly out of control. Being on it, I find while I'm still hungry it's a lot more manageable.

On an exciting note, I have my shoes ordered and on the way and I found the suit I'm going to wear. Purchasing it from a competitor on one of my fitness groups. So I cannot wait to get the whole package! It's going to be so exciting to get the shoes and the suit! It's going to make is so much more real!

Crunch time is here! My diet has been spot on workouts like I said, have been great *besides todays intervals that wore me out, though I still gave it my all* My power exercises I've been continuing to go up in reps and weights in  most of them so that's pretty exciting! I'm really hoping my body keeps responding well, because I really don't want to give up any of my beloved carbs quite yet that I still am allowed. Right now my last meal with slow-digesting carbs is my 10:00 am meal, and oh how I love my sweet potatoes. So body, please please cooperate! I promise to try to get more sleep!

I know these next 10+ weeks are going to fly by! And even when it gets tough and mentally and physically I feel like I cannot keep going, I going to keep going! I know I have it in me and I cannot wait to set foot on that stage!!! 73 days baby!!!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Taking Off My Fat Suit

Well, the time has arrived. True contest prep. On Saturday I will be 12 weeks out and in actual Contest Prep. Crazy! This time really has flown by. I started training back in February and am now 5 months into my training. Today I put my original pictures side by side with my progress pictures from yesterday and I sat back and looked at them, trying to pretend that I wasn't me, but was someone else looking at someone's progress pictures. And I have to say, I am kind of wowed. I DID THAT! I actually feel really proud of myself. All my hard work and dedication, even amongst some diet slip ups, even when I fell into the peanut butter jar, which I have since thrown out and completely taken out of my diet and don't plan on having in the house at all to keep myself from doing this again. 
And I have to tell anyone reading this, that seriously, if I can do this, ANYONE can do this. And no matter how many times you fall, DO NOT GIVE UP! Get yourself up off your butt and keep going!!!
I have definitely gotten discouraged and felt like I wasn't making progress, but i'll tell you, every single day counts, every little step is still one step closer. 
I am definitely not ready for the stage yet, still have a lot of work to do, but I can honestly say I am proud of myself. I have so much more self-confidence than I ever had before. I walk into the room with my head held high, my eyes forward. I have taken off my insecure fat suit and put on my new confident self! 
I am vowing to love the person I am. I have totally become a new person, transformed really. I still have my downfalls, my moments of anxiety and some depression, moments where I do stumble, but I really have become so much a stronger person who will not be walked all over. I am important! I matter. I have learned so much in this transformation so far and I know that I will be a better person for it. 
Can't wait to continue this journey.... 
I really do plan to blog more in these next 12 weeks. I have been slacking. I'm sure I'm going to have some tough moments these coming weeks, energy lacking, tough workouts, hard times with diet, but I WILL do my best, and I WILL keep my eye on the prize.
Alright, side by side pics for those who haven't seen them.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

If I Fall I Will Get Back Up

Photo: I will NEVER give up!!
Those of you who read my last blog know that I had gone through my first binge in months about a week and a half ago. I beat myself up over it a lot. But then I decided that I was not going to let it defeat me. I was going to get up and charge forward with a firmer resolve. And that's just what I did. I decided that I needed to cut out peanut butter and nut butters completely. It was becoming to hard for me to just have 1/2 T with my meals. Plus I found myself using my finger to run it around the inside of the jar and sometimes more than once. That is also what had started my binge a week and a half ago. So in place of the peanut butter I have been using more almonds and avocado and goat cheese here and there as well. I also began weighing out my oats and protein powders and let me tell you, 1/2 cup of oats ain't no 40 grams, more like 60 grams. Wow, what an eyeopener. and the same with protein powders. Really something to keep in mind. You may be overeating different things without even knowing it. I challenge you to try weighing something after measuring it to see how accurately it lines up. You may be surprised. I'm happy to say that since my binge on the 8th my eating has been completely on point, not one ounce or gram off. I enjoyed a delicious refeed last weekend in which I adapted a recipe and made raspberry banana pancakes with waldon farms syrup. Yum! So good and followed that meal with some Spaghetti Squash Spaghetti and corn. I enjoyed it very much. 
Well today was check-in day with my trainer. It has been a month since my last check in and I was pretty excited to see what progress I had made. Last month I had dropped almost 4% body fat as well as gained almost 3 pounds of muscle while only losing 2.5 pounds. Well since that last check in once again I had found the scale up 2 weeks in a row and has finally leveled back out. 
Ryan seemed very happy with my V-taper and he measured me, I weighed in, he tested my body fat and practiced some posing then took pictures. 
I was pretty excited to see the results of the measurements. When I came out from changing and Ryan got them figured them out, I have to say, I was pretty disappointed. My body fat hadn't gone down even a tenth of a percentage. The scale was only down 1.5 pounds from 138.5 to 137.0. My waste measured at an inch bigger than last week? WTF??? Hips were down from 36 and 3/4" to 36 and 1/8". My left thigh was down about 1/2" and my left arm was down about 1/4". I have to say I was feeling pretty frustrated. Like really. I work so hard every single day and this is the only progress I get? Ryan also added an additional session of Cardio. So now my extra SS will be Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings. 
I just felt kinda in a funk. Well today was progress pic day on my Facebook group Team Fit and I was like, ok, well, I guess I see some more definition in my back so I'll post a side by side of my back progress pics. And I started to get comments on the pic. "Your legs look amazing!!! And the rest of you does too!"  "Wow...seeing some changes in your legs! Looking great!" "OH YES, I see changes in the thighs and waist! You're doing it girl" "Thighs look Great...waist, calves, back looks really good and your booty too. GREAT JOB!!"  These are just a few of the comments. So much encouragement from my fit family.  This made me take a look at the pics and realize, you know, this was just 4 weeks. There is definitely progress. I am busting my butt and there is progress, little by little. Changes don't happen overnight and I WILL make it to the stage and I WILL be the best that I can be up there.  Ryan says we will really start cutting at 12 weeks out so I have about 3 and a half weeks left of the muscle building phase. Then I will hopefully really start to show some definition. 
I am very proud of where my lifts are at. Back squats I did 205 this week and deads I'm at 185. Bench I'm 135 but I did do one set of 140. So I do see progress in my strength. 
Well here are the pics. I would love any feedback you all have to give. 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Ups and Downs

Well it's been a few weeks since I've written. Every time that I really feel i need to blog it seems like I have no time! Well a lot has happened. 
First I'll start off with our little vacation to Tennessee. I was nervous about it because I knew my schedule would be completely out of whack and out of routine and it worried me. But I really had nothing to worry about. I took everything I needed food-wise that I couldn't buy there along with my food scale. I was completely successful. I measured everything and kept right on plan and even got a cheat meal while I was there. I ended up taking my food to the big family cook-out and passed up all the amazing cookout food that was there. I was feeling pretty proud of myself. I also ended up buying a week pass to the Gold's Gym which was great. The equipment was slightly different so a few exercise I had to adapt from my normal routine but I had great workouts and even ended up meeting a girl named April who approached me and said I was strong! We ended up workout out together two of the days I was there and it was a lot of fun! It was a great time catching up with family and some old friends as well. Very relaxing. Got to be in my swimsuit three of the 6 days that we were there so it was great. I came back feeling so proud of myself. It was just an all around great week. 
We ended up leaving about 5 am on Tuesday that week and got home a little after 4. So I unpacked a little and started laundry and yep, headed to the gym to get my workout in.
The next week on Thursday I came home and decided to make an omelet for my dinner, fitting in my macros with egg white, one whole egg and veggies, and was going to put some salsa on it. I had found this black bean salsa with only 1 g of carb per 2 T so I was pretty excited about it. Well I stuck my finger in it to taste it and ended up eating about 3/4 of the jar of salsa. I mean of all things to binge on salsa is nothing, but still, I let myself get out of control and felt guilty about it. Emailed my trainer and let him know, and the next morning at my weigh in I was up, most likely because of the sodium in the salsa. Was frustrated but tried not to get down on myself because it was merely salsa which merely was vegetables and some vinegar and spices.
That weekend was a cookout at my trainer house and I ended up having a burger and lots of chips with several different kinds of homemade dips as well as some dessert, included in the dessert was these super-rich snickers brownies that I had made. Afterwards I had an awful headache and stomachache which I attribute to the sugar.
Woke up the next morning, Sunday, and just felt off, felt very bloated and had a headache. I slept til about 9:30 and finally got up about 11 and fixed my oatmeal for breakfast. After eating just did not feel well, but I figured it would go away. Drove to the gym and sat in the parking lot trying to wish away my stomachache, but it would not go away and I felt like if I worked out I would be sick. So I came home and went back to bed until 2:30. When I woke up I felt much better and ate something and headed to the gym and got my workout in. And felt fine the rest of the day.
Well the week went ok, work was stressful, just kinda off, people were moody, one of the other administrative ladies was gone for a death in the family and the other had to adjust her schedule because of kids being out of school. Friday ended up being a super stressful day, it was crazy and people were cranky and there was so many things that were coming through. Plus I was feeling depressed and just not wanting to be around people. 
Well I was supposed to have a Refeed this weekend, had gotten it all figured out, I was going to make these banana peanut butter pancake post workout and for the next meal was going to have spaghetti squash spaghetti. I was super excited about it. Well Friday went to the store after work so I would have everything I needed for my refeed then came home and just chilled, didn't really do much. Was laying in bed and Justin had fallen asleep and I went to make my casein pudding. Got out the peanut butter to put my 1/2 T in and i ended up swiping my finger along the edge of the jar, then i did it again, and again and again. Then I opened the freezer and grabbed the ice cream that Justin had in there and ate a few bites of that with a little hot fudge and peanut butter, then I reached for some chips and queso, then some cereal that was in the cupboard. During this time I felt the old ED (eating disorder) creeping up behind me, whispering in my ear, justifying this. It's fine. You've done so good, just a little extra peanut butter, and then she took over. And my control was gone. My hands and my mouth had a mind of their own, I hardly tasted the food I ate and I didn't want more but I kept reaching for a bite, right out of the container, as fast as I could almost in a panic. I thought I heard a noise, Justin getting up so I quickly put the cereal in the cupboard, listened, it was nothing, grabbed it back out. Ate some more. I did stop before I felt sick, I didn't let it get that far, but then the feelings of self-loathing and guilt set in. I haven't had a binge in months, besides eating quite a bit of salsa, which really who would call that a binge. And I felt such shame such guilt. Should I email my trainer? Should I let him know? Should I tell anyone? I knew that if I didn't the guilt and shame would eat me up inside. I curled up in a ball and cried, so ashamed, so disappointed in myself and feeling like such a failure. Then I emailed my trainer and told him what I did, knowing full well that my refeed was no longer and so disappointed because of the refeed that I had all planned out that I myself had sabotaged. I then texted some of my wonderful fit sisters and told them what I had done and how I felt and all of them txted me back telling me to shake it off and to let it go. In that moment I made a resolve. First of all I decided I have to cut out nut butters, I had cut them out for a while because I had such issues and then added them back in after a few months without it thinking I had control, but it has gotten harder and harder for me to only have the 1/2 T at a time that my meal plan allows. I also have resolved to weigh everything, not just measure, I have been simply using measuring utensils for my protein powders and oats and a few other things so I decided to take it to the next level. I have reworked my macros. My trainer cut out 5 grams of carbs so this puts me at 160 g protein, 145 g carbs and 38 grams fat. I am going to push myself to the next level in every way possible. I may have had a setback but I will not let it bring me down. Instead I choose to take that setback and use it to push me harder! I WILL take it to the next level. I am now 17 weeks out and true contest prep it coming up quick. My trainer does a 16 week prep so I know that workouts and diet are going to get tighter. There will be no room for slipups. For those of you that know me, know that when I set my mind to something I am committed to it. It is no different with this. I want this so bad! I want to be the best that I can be and I WILL! Let's see what level I can take this to next!
Thank you to all my fit sisters, especially Talia, Ginelle, Chelsea, Ashley and so many more of you wonderful beautiful Fit Women! You inspire me so much and will never know how much your support means to me! I love you all!

Monday, May 21, 2012

I'm not yet where I want to be but I am so much farther than I used to be!

Well as many of you know I had my check in today and yes I had some great results but let me back up a little bit. This last week I busted my butt. I was so keyed in on my eating, not one extra lick of anything. I was feeling lean and mean and could tell by how my clothe fit and what I saw in the mirror that my body was changing. I have to admit that this last month my battle with the scale has been frustrating. Friday I weight in at 140.1 and a month ago when I had my check in I was 141.0. How frustrating is that that I was busting my butt in the gym and the scale had gone up one week .4 pounds and the next 1.0 pounds. And one Friday night I was so frustrated that I came home from work, I ate 2 jello cups and 3 pickle spears and cried my eyes out. But you know what I did not quit!!!
Well this weekend was crazy, like I said weighed in on Friday at 141.0. Saturday I had a long day. I had to get up at 3:15 am to go to a conference in Bloomington, MN so I packed my food and took my cooler in and ate my food when I was supposed to utilizing a gas station microwave twice. I got home about 8:00 and got ready and went and hit the gym, even though my body was tired, I was committed. I was going to get my workout in. Because I my schedule I decided to switch my Saturday and Sunday workouts and my refeed to Sunday as well. Well, when I woke up on Sunday, I thought to myself, I'm going to weigh myself just to see cuz I know the scale will be up tomorrow because of my refeed. So I stepped on the scale and could absolutely not believe my eyes. 137.8! WHAT????? for real? 
I couldn't believe it. Well I went to the gym and got all the housework and laundry done, food prep, typical Sunday stuff. This morning woke up. Honestly I expected that drop to be just a freak thing and expected it to be above Friday's weight because almost always is my weight up on Monday from Friday. But guess what, 138.5! Now I had been really excited for my check-in today, but seeing my weight drop all of a sudden, got me even more excited.
Well finally 1:00 came and it was time for my Check-in with Ryan. We did weigh-in and measurements and pics. After I changed and came out Ryan showed me my stats and man was I happy about them. My body fat dropped from 20.8% to 17.5%. Waist dropped 1.25 inches, hips .25 inches, my left thigh had been slightly bigger than my right but this week they evened out and my left thigh dropped 1/4 in making them both 21 5/8 inches, arms stayed exactly the same. 
I asked Ryan if I could see the pics, and thank goodness I did because for some reason his camera hadn't saved 2 of the pics. So didn't get to see them before I left. Well, Ryan emailed me my pics along with the comment that he figured up my lean body mass and not only had I dropped 3.3% body fat, but I had also gained 2.7 pounds! Holy crap! OMG! I was amazed! So my hard work, my busting my butt, my adding those 2 extra cardio sessions in and I actually am seeing my hard work pay off! I may have only dropped 2.5 pounds by todays weigh in, but that is such a small measure compared to the progress that was made! 
I have to say after seeing the numbers change, both body fat and inches, I am super pumped! This makes me so excited to see what the coming months bring!
This coming week is going to be a stretch and a challenge for me. We are going to visit family in TN and guess what that means, bringing most of my food along with. There is no way that I am going to let some time off work and out of my routine get me off track! I found a Gold's Gym that I will be frequenting during this trip! I am excited for the time off and the extra sleep that I'll be able to get. It was be very nice and I'll get to see some family and friends that I haven't seen in 18 months or more!
I feel like I have a renewed sense of will and purpose today! I am putting in the work and I am doing my thing! I am committed and nothing/no one can stop me! I will do/be the absolute best that I can be. Every single day I will give it 100%! Just you watch!!!!
Now here they, my progress pics! Please feel free to give me feedback, good or bad!  (sorry the quality isn't the clearest, wanted them a bit bitter so they could be seen better)

Monday, May 14, 2012

What a weekend!!!!

Wow! where do I even begin. Well this last week was filled with anticipation. Thursday night could not get here soon enough. Thursday night I was going to meet my Soul Sister. Talia finally arrived an hour later than we originally thought due to the time change, and we hugged and took pics and it was so weird seeing her in 3-D instead of just through pics or over txt or phone call. But it was such an amazing time. We had some amazing talks, lots and lots of laughs and just good old fun. I don't even remember the last time I had so much fun with a girlfriend. I just let loose and was so myself, didn't feel I had to hold anything back about myself, all my defenses down, because she really knows me and understands me better than anyone, that soul sister connection. Our relationship I feel like is so easy. Like friends who have known each other forever. Anyone who saw us would never have guessed that we had just met in person. We even got asked by several people if we were sisters. Here's is a rundown of our weekend. Thursday we made a "cooking show" video in which we made casein pudding, Friday we got up fairly early, had my weigh in, down a pound from the week before, and went to the gym, I put her through a pretty good chest, shoulders and tris workout....Grrr....plate raises... I took her to Thrive and she got to see the nutrition club I work out of and I did a wellness eval with her too, just for fun, and of course she got a shake, Cookie Monster. Then we went and got pedicures and took my hubby birthday balloons at work, complete with noisemakers. Then we came back and just hung out for a bit and waited in anticipation for our cheat meal. If anyone wants details on our cheat meal check out pics and videos on Facebook. It was amazing! And so much the better cuz we got to share it!!!! It was EPIC! Then Saturday we got up early for a Leg workout then headed to my first bodybuilding show. It was so great! I was so glad that Talia was there with me cuz it was so much more fun than it would have been had I been alone! It was so awesome watching all the amazing physiques on stage! It really got me so excited. It gave me lots to think about regarding posing and stage presence as well as looking at the girls and seeing who had similar builds to me and wondering what I will look like on stage. It was so inspiring and I was so excited that some of my team members placed multiple times including one getting her pro-card! How cool is that. Sunday morning came all too soon and I had to drive Talia to the airport. While we were there we looked around in the souvenier shop and found these friendship voodoo dolls that we both have on our key chains. The meaning that they have is taking care of our body and mind. How appropriate for us. While we both strive to be healthy physically, so much more is our struggle to be mentally healthy. We took more pictures of which we did take lots over the course of the weekend. And we did have to say goodbye, unfortunately. But I have to say I am truly thankful for this friendship, for this bond that I have developed with someone. Friendships like this are hard to find and I will not take that for granted. This weekend really refreshed me and encouraged me. I feel inspired I feel renewed, I feel motivated. What a weekend! This morning had such a great workout as well. I feel like I have a completely new attitude. Right now that scale, while I care about the number, I know that I am working on building muscle and that scale may not change quite like I would want it to right now. But that scale does in no way measure my success. Right now I am strong. Talia did boost my ego quite a bit while she was here. I mean, I lift heavy, but I guess I really didn't realize that maybe I do lift heavier than most girls. I AM strong! I have worked FREAKING HARD to get to where I am now, just like I work my butt off every single day, with my food choices, with my workouts! And you know what, I am DAMN PROUD of where I am and how far I have come. Thank you Talia for helping me see that.
One other quick thing. I was honored to be a guest post on a blog. Here is the interview if you would like to check it out.

I have so much to be thankful for and I want to say, thank you for reading this, thank you for listening to me rant, for listening to my ups and downs and I hope that I am able to encourage you in some way. Keep your head up, cuz sometimes will be tough, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel You CAN overcome! If there is any way I can help you or encourage you, please let me know!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Getting stronger, in more ways than one...

It has been a little while since I have written and I have def had my ups and downs. I have been discouraged, I have been on track, I've been motivated, had good days and bad days. It has been kinda tough mentally because the scale has not been moving, it has been up and it has stayed the same and it's very frustrating, especially because I have such a hard time getting away from that number. I have a confession to make, the last 2 weeks I have been weighing myself pretty much every day and just was not happy with what I was seeing. Workouts were good, eating was right on, but that darn number...ugh!!!! This last Friday I stepped on the scale and seeing it a pound above what it had been the week before, I just felt the anxiety creep in! The thoughts of what am I doing wrong, what is wrong with me, I'm such a failure. All that negative thinking. Thankfully I have some great friends who I can reach out to and can help pull meet out of those feelings of despair. The last two weekends I have wanted a cheat meal so bad, and each weekend I haven't been ready. Well guess what this weekend I get a cheatmeal and I am beyond excited! I have had planned what I wanted for the last 3 weeks! I am having Northern Lights Pizza, the Works or something with lots and lots of toppings with breadsticks of course, and Slutty brownies for dessert with this Brownie peanut butter swirl ice cream that I found. This alone would make me look forward to the weekend, but not only that, this weekend has lots of other great things happening. Thursday night my amazing friend Talia is coming all the way from New York State to visit me! I have connected with her in away that I haven't with anyone else. She is my soul sister and understands things like I do. We have had similar struggles and we have connected on such a deep level! I am so excited to finally meet her in person! She even gets to share my cheat meal with me! Friday is also Justin's birthday which I'm excited to celebrate. And Saturday Talia and I are going to attend my first Bodybuilding show! I'm super pumped! Ryan, my trainer, and his store are the main sponsors for this show and I'm excited to go cheer on the other members of FPT!!! Nicole and Angela and whoever else is on our team competing!!! It's going to be a great weekend. So many other things happening this month! Our 3 year wedding anniversary is May 16th. May 19th we drive to Minnesota for the Herbalife STS, Success Training Seminar, which will be a good refresher for me as I haven't been able to go to a training in several months due to my work schedule. The week after that we leave Wednesday nigth for Tennessee to go visit family and will be gone for almost a week. On top of that just started helping teach a free bootcamp out of Thrive which had a great first week turn out and am excited to see where we can take this! Oh, and one last thing, my trainer also is having me add in 2 25 minute Steady State cardio sessions, so this will mean either 2 a days or getting up half an hour earlier than the usual 4:15 alarm. But I'm so excited! Ok, back to this week. On Sunday I went and worked out with my dear teammate Stephanie Binney at her gym and she put me through an intense cardio workout, chains included. Let's just say I don't remember the last time I sweated that much! But it was great and we had a great time!
Monday morning, woke up and was feeling good! Had a great attitude and got to the gym ready to push my limits, and push them I did! Got some awesome PRs! On flat bench I got 3 sets of 5 at 125 lbs, and 1 arm DB rows, I was pulling the 60's! Then today I smashed my personal bests as well, squatting 195 and Deadlifting 175! Love it! I am determined to keep my attitude up! No matter what that scale says, I'm doing my best, and maybe I'm gaining muscle, maybe I'm holding water but that scale is just a stupid box.
Next week it will be a month since meeting with Ryan for a check-in. And honestly, I can't really see any changes in my body looking in the mirror, since last check-in. I'm gonna up my game and show the gym who's boss this week! I'm gonna keep my diet tight and I'm gonna blow myself out of the water! Nervous for those progress pics but who knows, maybe it will show me what I don't see.
I also wanted to mention that I was asked to fill out some interview questions about my struggles with Eating Disorders. This really made me have to think through what was behind a lot of my behaviors and thinking. Very thought provoking. I also compiled a sort of timeline of pictures from before I really started restricting to when I started binging and got to my heaviest, to searching for a balance and finding fitness and making it a part of my lifestyle.
It made my gaining a pound and being so worked up about it seem so petty, so minor. I have been through a lot of struggles in my life. And truly, even as I train and work my butt off to get that stage ready body, I need to remember to stop and reflect at where I once was and how blessed I am to have the health that I do. I also want any of you reading this to know you are not alone in food struggles. The media and the world we live in today poses such high standards on what beauty is and honestly it is impossible to be what they want you to be. No matter what that standard will find flaws. What we truly need to do is be happy with ourselves. That is the only way we can be satisfied. So surround yourself with those that love you for who you are. Work to be the best you can be and be proud of yourself, be happy with yourself. Shine that positive energy around because it is contagious. I do want to thank anyone who reads my blog. It is such an outlet for me, and I should smack myself for going so long without blogging. It helps me get my thoughts together. I learn so much about myself. Thank you for listening to my rantings and my struggles and I hope that in some way I am able to help and encourage even one person through this blog! 

***One last note, I made a promise to myself that I absolutely will not step on the scale except on Mondays and Fridays, unless it's check in day with Ryan. It's just a stupid number. I may need reminded of this from time to time, but I do know this.***

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Compare myself to who I was yesterday

So I came across this quite this morning on facebook and I thought how applicable it was to me. I have such a hard time not constantly thinking about how far I have to go and just how I have so much work to do and I don't ever just sit back and look at myself and take pride in the progress that I have made. So this is me telling myself. "I have done an awesome job! I have worked my butt off and I should be damn proud of myself."

I had a really good week, especially compared to last week. Monday was the final day before the tax deadline and I ended up waking up late due to my alarm not going up. I was like are you kidding me? I did not want another week like last week. But I told myself I would not let it ruin my day. I knew I needed that extra sleep to get over the cold that I was still fighting and guess what, after working non-stop on Monday, I didn't even take a break for lunch, just heated up my food and ate at my desk,  I went to the gym and had an amazing upper body workout with an awesome pump and all. It was kinda strange working out at night, different feel of the gym, different people. And I was still basically the only girl in the weight room, showin' all the guys. I'm sure they wondered who the heck I was and where had I come from, lol.

Here's a snapshot of the nice pump I had going on :)
Well I felt really good about this week. I woke up this morning and weighed in since I was meeting with Ryan for my check in and was very happy with what the scale had to say, especially after it went up last week. 141.0! Last Friday it was 142.9 and the two weeks before that both had been 142.5! Progress!!!

Work dragged all morning and finally it was 12:45 and time to go. Got to Nutrisport got all measured, body fat and inches and practiced a little posing and then progress pics.

I came out from changing and Ryan had all the stats pulled up. Since the last check-in a month ago I am down 1% body fat, about pounds, an inch off my hips and about an inch off each thigh. He said he was also really happy with how my lats came in.

So good check in, but I hadn't gotten to see the pics yet so here comes the waiting game of pics. Got them at about 6 but had to head out to an Herbalife meeting at 6:15. So here I am 10:30 and I finally got the pics side by side for comparison. I would love any feedback you guys have once again. I do apologize that the most recent ones turned out kind of blurry. I am going to admit that I do see progress. I am super excited to actually see some definition in my back. I have noticed that my strength in my back really has gone up, those pull-ups are getting easier. I can now start all three sets with 4 full-on pullups before I switch to assisted.
Can't wait to see where next month and the months to come take me!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Through the struggles....

Well, It's been a little while since I have written. I have been extremely busy with tax season wrapping up. Work has been crazy but it's finally winding down. 
I have to say this week was a tough week. You know how they say when it rains it pours? Well this was true in my case this past week.
Started out Monday when I forgot my work clothes at home causing me to have to rush through my workout in order to go home and get ready for work. I also struggled with my bench that morning at the gym which really frustrated me. Usually I can improve on the week before and Monday I really struggled with my form and was having a hard time getting the same lift as the week before. Ugh, not a good way to start my week. Let me back up to the day before, Easter Sunday. We had gone over to some new friends house and had a great Easter. Met some new friends, they all had an amazing spread, and me, I brought my chicken and green beans along to eat. I was so proud of myself. Not one bite, even when Justin tried to convince me to just have one bite of the carrot cake. I did not give in. 
Well we brought some leftovers home for Justin to have and take to work and such. Monday evening I came home and was doing my dishes from the day and I started to get thoughts of , oh why don't you just have a bite of that carrot cake and that green bean casserole. Just one bite. And I thought about it and thought about it and finally my body took on a mind of it's own and I found myself opening up the containers. Just a few bites. oh and had to taste the pickle roll dip that I had made with a couple pita chips. 
Thankfully I did not let it lead to a full-on binge, just ended it with a couple bites of each. but even as i was taking those bites, I began to feel the anxiety start to build up. I found that while I hadn't had a full-on binge whatsoever, so mild compared to the damage I could have done, that I went through the same cycle of emotions that I would have had I had a binge. The feelings of anxiety, of panic, of failure, of self-loathing, of shame. I began to sob, feeling like such a failure. I had done so well, sticking to my meal plan since I started with my trainer. How could I do this. I was so much better than this.
I texted Justin something about me being a failure and he called me wondering what the heck I was talking about. Now I haven't really been open with Justin about the mental struggles I go through with food. Him seeing this side of me is very new to him. I have always been so ashamed of the feelings and behavior that I would just withdraw and push those feelings deeper inside, but I am really making an effort to not just hold those feelings inside. The problem is he doesn't understand these feelings whatsoever and just wants to fix them, which he obviously cannot do which causes him frustration, which in turn makes me want to not be open with him about it because of how he reacts. It was just a really tough night emotionally. 
Well, Tuesday woke up and went to the gym, had a great lower body power workout and then mid-morning it hit me, nasal-decongestion, sore throat, achiness. Ugh, did not feel good. I ended up getting some medicine and going home after work and taking a nap. Wasn't sure if I would be able to workout the next morning, but woke up and my throat wasn't sore, though I was still congested, so decided since it was cardio and abs day I would still go, I would just be a little easier on the cardio. So I did incline walking instead of the usual HIIT. I was glad I had gone. Anyways, while this is all going on, work is INSANE!
The week before the deadline and so many things had been pushed to the last minute. It was kind of overwhelming and stressful on top of not really feeling good. Friday morning came and I wasn't really guessing because of how the week went that there would be much of a difference in the scale. But seeing the number go up, even though it was just .4 pounds was still tough for me emotionally. Ugh, I hate how that stupid little box has such power over me. 
Anyways got through Friday, refeed Saturday, thought I would have to work on Sunday as well. Was so extremely thankful when my boss called me and said to not worry about coming in, that there wasn't that much and that I could get caught up on Monday. 
Such a relief. I was able to get my gym time in, my house cleaned, food prepped, laundry done and a nice nap. 
This morning when I opened my eyes I about bolted out of bed seeing that it was starting to get light outside. I looked at the clock and could not believe it. 6:35?!?!?!? are you f***ing kidding me?!?!?!?! ugh! I had missed my morning workout. I was thrown off! but you know what? I decided I needed to just go with it. I figured i needed that extra sleep so I could completely get over this cold. And guess what, I went to the gym after work and had a great workout! I can already tell that this week is going to be so much better than last. But guess what, those tough times are the times that really make the strong stand out from the week. I am strong, I do not give up! I will not give up! I am committed to this lifestyle! It is my way of life. It is not something that I will someday arrive at or all of a sudden become. It is part of who I am and what I do.
I'm pretty excited that I check in with my trainer on Thursday. It's been 2 months since I started and I am so ready to see the progress. The scale hasn't changed much, but I know that I have a lot more definition going on. Last week, I had 2 different people at the gym, one of which had never said a word to me before that they could really see a lot of progress! Let me tell you those words were really needed this last week. I tend to be so hard on myself. I have this perfectionist standard for myself. A standard that I will never reach, I can never get there. My personal goal that I want to work on is really sitting back and being proud of myself. Really noticing the progress as it comes and not just the goals of where I want to be. I have worked so hard and there is no reason for me not to be proud of myself.