Great Run!

At least one hundred times in the last three years, I’ve bumped into a neighbor in workout clothes and we’ve chatted about our mutual love of running.

Despite this almost daily interaction, we had never run together. I had often thought about suggesting it, but I was intimidated by her fitness level: she regularly competes in triathlons and, despite my Marathon success this past January, my weight gain has really crushed my self confidence.

A few nights ago, after we’d bumped into each other walking our dogs, she told me she planned to do an 8 mile training run Tuesday morning and asked if I’d want to join. I hesitated, embarrassed that I wouldn’t be able to keep up, but then told her I’d love to.

For two nights in a row, I panicked, worried she’d be so much faster than me or that she’d feel like she had to tone down for me to keep up, and I even debated canceling on her. I didn’t want to be that person, though, so when my alarm went off at 4:45am this morning to get ready, I got up, stretched, and put on my running clothes.

I met up with her and her friend, another super fit runner, and I could feel myself getting really nervous that I wouldn’t be able to keep up. But they were so nice and friendly and excited to run together, I decided I would give it my all and hope for the best.

Nine miles later, we finished as the sun was rising over Lake Baldwin, and I couldn’t believe we were done. We talked the whole time and, except for a quick water stop, we ran the whole route. Because of the high heat and humidity, we committed to a 10:00 minute mile pace; and it felt perfect the entire way.

No pain. No stress. Just a beautiful run and great conversation.

I’m so glad I didn’t cancel, and this gave me the confidence I needed to know that my few extra pounds haven’t diminished my athletic ability or endurance. I can get this weight back off, and I can continue to get stronger and faster at the same time.

I can do this. We can do this.

Bon appetite, my friends!

– Tori

Trying Something New

Well, as much as I was ENJOYING the Dine N Ditch meal plan service, they unfortunately closed up shop just a few weeks in. Not a permanent close (I hope), but they needed to relocate their kitchen, hire new staff, and take a step back from the service for a few weeks to restructure the entire business model.

I was doing exceptionally well on the meal plans, dropping almost 10 lbs in my first four weeks, but after the deliveries ended and I was left to my own devices …well, you can imagine what happened.

Today’s weight: back up to 141.2.

Yikes. It’s hard to believe that just two years ago I hit my all-time low of 123.4, and now I can barely get (and stay) in the 130s anymore.

I know it has been a combination of factors: stress, overeating, and, shockingly, overexercising.

For those of you who have followed the blog a long time, you know I’m a cardio-junkie and, as my weight started to slowly climb at the beginning of 2015, I started to seriously step up my cardio, hitting more than 3 or 4 hours on some days.

Well, as I’ve learned, you not only can’t out-exercise a bad diet (or, in my case, a healthy diet, but in MASS quantities), over-exercising can actually sabotage weight loss by making your body freak out and think you’re fighting for your life on a daily basis. Hence my weight creeping up and up, even when my diet was in check. Yeaaaaaah, that fucking sucks, if you don’t mind me being frank. Ugh.

So, with less than 5 weeks until my 32nd birthday, I am trying to switch things up and break out of my rut.

For the next 34 (well, basically 33, since it’s 11:35 pm EST as I write this) days, I am going to drastically reduce my cardio (think 10-30 minutes per day, versus my usual 90+) and look to integrate substantially more strength training, yoga, and stretching. My body has been in a perpetual state of stress for over a year as I pummeled it with intense bouts of cardio, so now I’m going to try to give those slow-twitch muscles a bit of a break and focus on building lean muscle mass.

In addition, I’m attempting to modify my diet slightly, increasing my fat in take and leaning more toward a Ketogenic plan. Not full Keto – which involves like 70% of your calories from fat – but definitely hoping that incorporating more healthy fats, like avocado and coconut oil, will help with satiety and appetite control.

Yesterday was a rough start, only because I have absolutely no will power when it comes to nuts, so my “single handful” of almonds before bed turned into half of a can, but today’s been better:

Calories: 1,611
Carbs (total, not net): 72g (about 17% of my daily calories)
Protein: 136g (about 33% of my daily calories)
Fat: 93g (about 50% of my daily calories)

I prepped all of my food for the next two days (salmon and green beans, chicken and broccoli, shrimp and sauteed cauliflower, etc), so hoping that having quick, easy to grab meals will help me stay on track. I’m aiming for 1,350 calories per day, but happy as long as I stay under 1,700, as I am exercising pretty consistently.

Fingers crossed I can reset my system and get back into the 130s before I hit 32. I feel like it’s only getting harder with age, so I need to really get control of my weight now before it becomes an impossibility, you know?

Any advice, suggestions, or feedback is always welcome.

Bon appetite, my friends!

~ Tori

P.S. The photo is totally my dinner tomorrow night: shrimp sauteed with basil, garlic, coconut oil over a bed of chopped cauliflower and orange pepper. Much noms. Many yums. So delicious.

A Confession and a Commitment

I have spent the last few months making excuses [to myself] for not posting on here. Lots of excuses.

“No one cares what I have to say.”

“There are more important things I should be working on.”

“No one reads this blog anyhow.”

“Blogging doesn’t really help me.”

Ultimately, though, I wasn’t posting on here for one main reason:

I’m embarrassed.

Why? Because I slipped. And not a little …I slipped right off the damn cliff.

I went from my all-time low weight (123.4 lbs back in June 2014), up to 132-133 in Summer 2015, to a whopping 143.4 as of Monday, April 25th, 2016.

I’m back over 140 lbs for the first time in almost four years.

I let my eating disorder take back over. Except, instead of my usual bulimia, it manifested itself as pure binge-eating, subsequently followed by hours at the gym.

While I realize 143.4 lbs doesn’t seem like much compared to the 218 lbs I used to weight, I have gained the weight while continuing to exercise 2 to 3 hours per day 6 to 7 days per week.

I understand nutrition and understand the logic behind eating healthy, and I will eat healthy for several days, and then I uncontrollably binge on food, even foods I’m not a fan of.

There are days I will eat three or 4-to-5000 calories and I can’t seem to make myself stop.

Unlike my teenage years, though, instead of purging with laxatives or vomiting, I tried to work out to burn it back off.

I’ve spent entire days at the gym.

I’ve called out of work the day after a bad binge and spent a solid eight hours on the elliptical and stairmaster trying to undo the damage of my binging. Which, as you know, isn’t really realistic. Unless you are an Olympic athlete, you cannot work off over eating or bad diet.

I watched the scale slowly creep up, the pants get tighter (and eventually stop fitting), and I kept making excuses for myself, refusing to admit I’d lost control to my ED again.

How did this happen? How did I lose my footing?

I’m in a bad head space right now because I can’t stand seeing myself self-sabotage with diet when I work so hard to eat well and exercise. It’s like a tiny part of me is trying to destroy everything I’ve worked so hard to achieve, and that part of me shovels in food while the rest cries helplessly in the corner.

Fortunately, I’ve stopped lying to myself.

This week, I signed up for a meal delivery service to help me get me back to a healthy relationship with food. Five meals per day, six days per week — all prepared and catered to a healthy, clean lifestyle.

It’s a small step toward fixing the damage I’ve caused, but I’m hoping it will help me be more cognizant of portions, of my true motivator for binges, and it will take away my ability to count calories or stress over ingredients, as everything will be made for me.

I’ll try to post daily as I work to take back control of my weight, my health, and my life.

Bon appetit, my friends,

Tori

 

Absenteeism

Absenteeism.

(noun)
frequent or habitual absence from work, school, etc.:

rising absenteeism in the industry.
This also applies to health, nutrition, and overall personal accountability.
This is my first post in nearly a month. In the last few weeks I’ve put my overall health and wellness to the side, and, as a result, my weight is back up to 136 pounds.
Rather than beat myself up (as I’m prone to do), I’m going to recognize this as a wake up call and a reminder that my body needs me to take care of it. It’s tendency to revert to its former self (I used to be 215+ pounds) is never going to go away, so I can never put my nutrition and health on a backburner. Life doesn’t work that way.
I’m not going to go crazy. I’m not going to commit to a ridiculous diet or exercise plan. I’m going to be realistic.
While I’m still working two jobs, I’ve reduced my hours at the studio and, as a result, I’m finally starting to get a bit more sleep. It’s still not as much as I should be getting, but I’ve gone from 2-3 hours per night up to 3.5-4.5 hours, with naps getting squeezed in when possible.
Now that I’m better rested, I think I’ll find it easier to make better food choices and more realistic to hit the gym 4-5 times per week.
I get out of the studio at 7am and, moving forward, instead of racing home to squeeze in a 60 minute nap before work (that leaves me groggy and more tired than I was before), I’m going to hit the gym for a 45-60 minute HIIT workout.
This will help to give me energy for my day, but, more importantly, will free me up in the evening to go to bed earlier. At present, I’ve been trying to workout between 6pm and 8pm at night (which tends to be the most crowded time, slowing down my workout) and I’ve found it hard to wind down for bed, because I’m running on the high and energy boost from my cardio. By working out from 7:15am to 8:15am (with time to shower and get to the office at 9am), I should find it easier to get to bed earlier at night (the goal is by 9pm) and the cyclical effect should be more energy, more sleep, and more hormonal balance.
I’ve stocked my fridge and freezer with healthy snacks — which includes pre-portioned freezer bags of fruit/veggies for morning smoothies — and I’m not committing to anything unrealistic: I’m just going to eat healthy, eat whole foods (avoiding processed as much as possible), and watch my overall portions. I want to live a healthy lifestyle: I don’t want to diet anymore. As you can see, diets don’t work for me. You can’t be absent from a healthy life, but you can definitely fall off of a band wagon for a crash diet.
That being said, I’ll try to post on here every few days with updates, but mainly I’m just going to focus on being healthy, being strong, and taking care of myself.
Hope everyone is doing well!
Bon appetit, my friends!
~ Tori

I’m Alive …sort of.

Sorry for the long silence on here.

For the past two weeks, I’ve been trying to find a way to make peace with my body.

You see, I decided to go back to the TV studio, and now my crazy schedule from last fall has returned. That means 18-20 hour work days again, coupled with graduate school. Yeah, not sure when I will sleep, either, so don’t ask.

I’m terrified, of course, because the last time I did this schedule, I gained 10 lbs … and I’ve had an ongoing battle to remove it ever since. In fact, my weight has been in flux since August, which was only two weeks into this schedule last time, so you can imagine my anxiety now that I’ve hit the two week point again.

I’m trying to be strategic about squeezing walks into my work days, and I bought an abdominal ball to sit on while in the studio. I keep an 8 lb hand weight at my full-time job, and I’m really just trying to move as much as possible. My success will come from squeezing exercise into my day versus trying to sacrifice sleep for gym time, which failed miserably the last time around.

Won’t be posting daily on here anymore, but I will do my very best to check in every few days to stay accountable.

Wish me luck!

– Tori

Grrrrrr.

You probably noticed that I didn’t post this weekend.

No accountability reports, no updates.

Yeah.

It wasn’t a good weekend. I weighed in on Friday morning at 125.8 (expected, as I knew the 124.6 was more than likely water weight), and I ate well all day. My husband planned a beer tasting (like a wine tasting, but with craft beer), so I got a good workout in (two hours of elliptical) to give myself an extra allowance for dinner.

Yeah. I was bad. I ate a TON of cheese, drank three glasses of wine, and had a bunch of salty crackers. Even with my 1,250+ calorie burn, I was still way over my calorie limit, consuming close to 2,800 total calories.

OK… so Friday was my cheat day.

Then Saturday came along. My weight was up HORRIBLY (over 130) and I was depressed.

I ate healthy, worked out HARDCORE (60 minutes on the stairmaster for 1,003 burned calories + 60 minutes elliptical for another 630 calories burned), and then my husband and I had pho for dinner, followed by chocolate.

Again, over my calorie allowance, but I burned enough (fortunately) to still be at a burn.

On Sunday, I weighed in at 134.

134!! How do I go from 124.6 on Thursday to 134 on Sunday? Is it truly, physically possible to gain 10 lbs in three days?!

I took two diuretic pills, desperately trying to flush out the salt. I drank 1.5 liters of aloe vera juice, 1.5 liters of water, and 2 cups of green tea. I wasn’t able to workout (I had to work and a stack of homework), but I managed to squeeze in about 45 minutes of walking, and then I did 250 squats, 100 lunges, and 100 bicep curls while watching TV with my husband before bed.

This morning? 131.8 lbs.

Honestly, why do I even try? 😦

~ Tori

Life Returns to Normal

The time has come. My internship has ended, and my life is about to return to normal. Well, as close to normal as my life can be, that is.

Today was my last “official” day as an intern at The Daily Buzz, and moving forward I’ll be freelance writing for them from home. I no longer will have to wake up at 2am (to report to the studio by 3am) and exist on 2-3 hours of sleep per night.

It was a wild ride – and I LOVED the experience – but man, it took a toll on my body. I started the internship on 7/28 at 123 pounds, jumped up to almost 135 (when you don’t sleep, you eat), and have slowly been working to trim it back off ever since.

My hope is that I’ll resume my OLD regimen – clean eating Sunday-Friday (cheat days are Saturday!), gym 5-6 days per week, and outdoor running – and get back on track with my overall wellness.

My husband’s 31st birthday is this weekend, though, so I do plan to enjoy myself before recommitting 100%. A girl’s gotta live, right? 🙂

On that note… bon appetit, my friends and WELCOME BACK TO NORMALCY!

~ Tori