Thursday, November 28, 2013

Fear of chairs.

I've had what I consider to be a slight fear of unknown chairs.  I know to some it sounds dumb, you see a chair, you sit in it what's the problem.  But when you're 300+ pounds, it isn't always that simple.   I have to be thankful that I have never broken a chair that I've sat on.  There are those who have and I think I've come close a time or two, you feel the legs spreading a little bit and I jump up and say I've been sitting all day, thanks I'd rather stand!

Often at outdoor events, barbecue's, gatherings that sort of thing I would often stand, or lean against something rather than sit.  I didn't want to be responsible for breaking someones lawn chair.  I would be mortified to do so!  Those little canvas chairs that push together and you carry around like a back pack, yeah, I've never sat in one of those, although I figured if it didn't break, it would take a crane to get me up and out of the darned thing.  I've felt uncomfortable sitting on some chairs in restaurants, and at other peoples houses

I have a severe fear of folding chairs.  You know the type that most rec centres have, the grey or blue ones that fold out and and you can stack them 50 high.   I've always been afraid to use them, a girl in high school who wasn't heavy had one break on her and I felt her pain and mortification.  I could imagine that happening to me and being teased mercilessly for it.

I sat down in a folding chair recently while volunteering at a trade show without even thinking about it.  Until I was sitting down, then I remembered when I was volunteering at the same event last year, I wanted to sit, I was tired, my feet hurt, my back was aching and I was miserable.  I sat in the chair for all of 30 seconds, because I could feel how wobbly the legs were and I was afraid of the chair going down, taking me with it. 

It seems like such a little thing, being able to have a seat when and where you want to doesn't it.  I'm so glad that I can now do that without thinking about it.  Without being worried about whether or not the chair would hold me. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Closet Purge and Shopping.

A few weeks ago, I had to go shopping for a dress that I could wear to an interview, all of my work clothes have gotten too big and I had nothing to wear.  Well, I got a bee in my bonnet to do a closet purge, try everything on, and whatever didn't fit was going to the Women's Resource Centre here in town.  So I spent the morning purging the closet.  Clothes were gone through, sorted and bagged up.  When I was done this was what my closet now looks like.

A lot of empty hangers
A few pants, a couple of sweaters a dress and some shirts is all that is left!
The closet has slim pickings these days and I have had to pick a couple of thing up, including new work style clothes.

I went shopping today with my mom and for the first time that I can honestly recall, shopping was a pleasant experience.  I went into a store called Laura in Langley and the salespeople there made my day.  They were helpful, polite, and made an experience that I normally hate into one of the best experiences I've ever had.   Part of it was that I had clothes to choose from.  Everything I picked up either fit or was a little too big.  I had a large amount of clothes in my hands as I was going around the store.  I do like to keep the clothes I"m selecting with me so that I can see what I have and try to coordinate outfits as I go.  Usually it's a struggle with the sales people wanting to get a room started and take the clothes off of you, but when I explained I would rather keep the clothes with me the sales person went to get a rolling clothes rack so that I wouldn't have to carry the clothes with me. Wow! 

When I was ready to go back to try things on, the salesperson rolled the rack right into the change room for me, settled my mom down in a chair to wait for me and came back a few times to see how we were making out.    The customer service level there was fantastic!

I loved my shopping experience today, I felt a little spoiled by the level of customer service and I am so grateful that I can now go into a regular store and have a great selection of clothes to choose from.  That I'm able to put basic pieces together that look and feel fabulous.  I loved the fact that I was able to purchase a skirt, blouse, jacket and dress that are all coordinated, made of beautiful fabrics, are great quality and best of all reasonably priced!

Today's experience may just have made me into a clothes shopper!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Rough Week.

This past week for me was not a good week activity wise.  As in I didn't get a lot of activity in.  I didn't get much walking in, I didn't do my intervals like I had planned out.  I didn't even do my yoga every day.  It was not a good week.  I had a bad week with my feet this week.  So bad in fact that on Tuesday night I literally didn't get any sleep with them.  I didn't get any relief from  my compression socks, or medication.  It was just bad, so bad in fact that more than one person asked me if I was all right on Wednesday as I was pale as a ghost and looked miserable.  I realized on Thursday how bad I must have looked when my dad called me to check on me.   I was at their house briefly on Wednesday to take my mom somewhere and my dad was worried about me I looked so horrible and didn't have that usual pep in my step.

My feet were better on Thursday and Friday but I still didn't get out and do my walking, all sorts of excuses abound!  I was tired, my feet were still sore, it was raining, I was busy, I keep coughing.  All sorts of excuses and that's exactly what it was!  Excuses.  I only earned 20 activity points last week, which is less than half of what I normally earn.   I've know I need to just suck it up buttercup and get on with it!  My feet hurt, oh well, they are still going to hurt if I'm sitting doing nothing.  It's raining out, that's why you have a water proof jacket, a baseball cap and two pairs of runners.  It's dark out, that's why you have a reflective vest and reflective light up arm bands.  No more excuses!  I need to kick it up a notch and get back to the activity level I was at when I was losing weight steadily. 

Despite my lack of activity, I did have a loss this week, I lost almost a pound.  I'm back to where I was two weeks ago, so that's a good thing.  Now, with getting refocused on my activity, I need to get on with the job of losing weight, no more of this losing a few ounces one week, gaining a few ounces the next! 

Here I am - refocused and ready to move it, move it!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Power of a gain.

Sometimes it is little.  A couple of ounces this week, a couple more next week, a pound here, half a pound there.  Nothing can strike fear into the heart of someone on a weight loss journey than that polite look on the face of person conducting your weigh in when they politely close your weight journal and hand it back to you, telling you to have a good week.  Without saying congratulations! 

I always smile back, thank them and then nervously peak at my journal as I walk over to take a seat in the meeting area.  A gain!  A groan!  The panic of going the wrong way on the scale.  That instant thought of what's the point of doing this!

It's amazing how having that tiny little plus sign in front of a very small number can have such a large impact on how you feel, whether you were expecting it or not.  Whether you feel you deserve it or not.

The power of a gain just about did me in.  I had thought that perhaps by the end of October I would hit that next milestone of 75 pounds lost.  I only had a few ounces to go and then I could celebrate.  However that didn't happen, instead I had a gain!  I gained a pound and it had the power to almost ruin my whole day.  I left the meeting in a mood, I was hungry, it was 830am and I hadn't had breakfast yet.  I could go for an Egg McMuffin, or maybe a Sausage McMuffin, and hey look, there's McDonalds right there on the next block.  It would be so easy to just go into that drive thru and place an order.

The power of a amazing thing.  The only thing more powerful?  The power of knowing that this was a blip, this week will be better, that you're doing something good for you.

I discovered that I'm more powerful than a gain....and that's a great thing!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Boundary Bay 5K

The Boundary Bay 5K was on Sunday.  I was so relieved when the alarm went off at 545am, to silence.  Yes silence.  No rain beating on the roof as it had been when I went to bed on Saturday night.  I had already packed my post run bag with pants, shirt, socks and shoes.  Just in case it was raining I thought I should have dry clothes for the drive home.  Thankfully, I didn't need them.  It was still dark when my awesome husband and I got in the car at 620 to head out to Boundary Bay.

My wonderful husband picked up my run kit for me on Friday when he was on his way home from work, it took an hour to get the run kit but it was worth not having to drive in any earlier!
Run kit ready to go Sunday Morning.

We were aiming to be at the run site for 730, an hour before start time as I needed to exchange the shirt that I received.  Somehow they had me down for a much smaller size than I wear.  I love dealing with Try Events, they are awesome and so easy to deal with.   We were really surprised when we arrived to see how full the parking lot already was with more than 45 minutes to go before the start of the race.  I had to wait about 20 minutes on site to change my shirt as there were a lot of event day registrants and people picking up their kits.  I was so lucky to get the last shirt in the size that I needed.  When looking at it I thought it may actually fit, so I went into the washrooms and put it on.  Low and behold, a tech shirt actually fit me!  Yeah!

A quick trip back to the car to grab my stuff and I was ready to head to the start line.  There were a lot of people there and I have to admit I was a little nervous as I know that I'm slow and having so many true athlete's around me, really intimidated me for a few minutes.  I had a lot of those "what do you think you're doing here" thoughts going through my head but I quickly overcame my self doubt.   It helped to have my husband there for support,  before it was time to get ready to go.
Wearing my Boundary Bay shirt, ready for warm up.

At the start line, a lot of runners at this race!
After warm up it was time to get in line to start the race, the race was full marathon, half marathon, relay marathon, 10K and 5K.  They asked us 5ker's to stay towards the back of the line to let the others get away.   After the start gun it probably took about 2 minutes to get to the actual start line but before long we were off.  It was a gorgeous day and the trail is along the bay, the tide was out but there were still some beautiful views to be seen.

Yep, just me on the trail, with a few people walking behind me.
As I started out at the back of the pack, and I always walk the first five minutes or so it wasn't long before there were just a handful of us on any section of trail at a given time.  There were a couple of ladies in front of me that I managed to pass but I was still at the back of the pack, which is fine with me.  I'm not running the full races yet, although I figure I ran about 1/4 of the way.
Heading back, still the only one on the trail with a couple of people behind me.
It was great to see quite a few people in the community out cheering people on, especially when we reached the end of the trail and were on the road for a little bit.   The energy of the crowd as you got closer to the finish line was great and as some of the 10k runners were passing me towards the finish line there was a lot of energy to carry you through.  I crossed the finish line and saw my wonderful husband standing along the finishers chute cheering me on, it always gives me such a sense of accomplishment to hear my name as I cross the finish line.  My Garmin Finish time was 54:29,  my chip time was 54:16  a new Personal best for me  I'm going to work on getting that time down some more as I really do want to do the BMO 8K in May.
Love my finishers medal for this race!
Next up is the Santa Shuffle on December 7th.  I'm working on getting some friends to join me, so it should be fun for everyone!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Clothes Shopping

I am one of those rare creatures who hate clothes shopping.  I mean, loath, despise, HATE.  There aren't enough words to describe how much I dislike shopping for clothes.  I usually have to be in the mood to go shopping, and I MUST need something and that is why I am going.

I had to go clothes shopping last week.  I've been interviewing for different positions and I'm not liking how I'm looking.  My work clothes are all too big, I put on my "reliable" dress on Sunday, to ensure that it was clean and pressed, and it kept slipping off my shoulder.    I didn't think the off the shoulder look would bode well for the interview that I had lined up for this week.  I headed out on my own to my old stand by store.  I was a little panicked when I saw that they didn't have any skirts currently and only had one style of dress in three colours.  I grabbed a dress in each colour and headed to the dressing room.  I changed into the first dress and cringed, it looked truly horrid on me, but for all the wrong reasons, reasons I'm not used to.  Instead of being too tight and making me look like a stuffed sausage, it was too big!   I almost bought it because of the panic.  I needed something to wear for the interviews and I didn't have a lot of time!

I left the store and saw another one further down the mall.  I know that my sister had bought me a sweater out of that store a couple of years ago but until now,  nothing else fit.  I went into the store and sighed a little bit, they did have a plus woman's size shop in the back right corner of the store and I could see 2 dresses there.  I took the largest one in each size back to the change room and was surprised when I put them on that they were also too big.  I had a different sensation this time.  I was thrilled!

I was technically in a "normal" clothing store and something I tried on was too big.  The sales girl went and got me the next size down.  I was so surprised that it fit.  I couldn't make my mind up between the two dresses so I went home empty handed.  I did however do what every girl does.  I called my mom!  She was available to go shopping with me and we headed out the next morning.  As wewere driving my mom suggested that we go to one of the major department stores to see what they had.  My first instinct was to say that I didn't think they would have anything that would fit me.  My mom pointed out that if the one store I went into yesterday did, then there was a good chance other stores would as well.

We headed to the mall and for the first time in my adult life, probably from the time I was maybe 16, I bought a dress in a regular department store.  I was very hesitant going in, I wasn't sure that I was going to find anything, and instead we found two beautiful outfits and they both fit me really well.  I really wanted to get both but the budget prevailed and I managed to get a beautiful versatile dress for less than what I would have thought.   I was thrilled with the fact that I now have so many different options available to me for shopping.

I've always relied on just one store here in Canada, and one in the States.  Other than making my own clothes (which I've done) they were my only clothing options. When you've been as large as a 6x, you don't have a lot of choices.   I'm excited that as I continue on my journey the options are just going to keep coming.

It was a pretty darned good feeling!