Be Prepared

Well, bugger. I put on that 0.4kg I lost that week. I was nearly in tears as I stood on the scale at 6.20 this morning. How dare those scales show a gain! After all my efforts! My shoulders were still stinging from Body Pump, my thighs were still aching from RPM, my hips and waist felt narrower… so what gives?

I brooded the whole twenty minute walk to the train station. I just felt exhausted by all this effort to bust my lard. It just seemed uphill and somewhat futile. But then I remembered what I’d written in last week’s entry – it takes hard work and consistency. I may have exercised like a mofo last week, but along came the bag of hot chips I scoffed on Friday midnight, the extra toast with avocado, a wayward Marks and Spencer mini roll. It just goes to show that I cannot afford calorific indiscretions at this stage. You can get away with it when you’re 80 kilos overweight but not 11.7 kilos. It’s a whole new level of hard work and consistency now.

That’s why this whole concept of "plateauing" really irks me. I think people use it too freely. If I gain or stay the same, I am not going to put it down to a plateau. More times than not, your weight loss has not plateaued – your weight loss EFFORTS have plateaued. Let’s be honest with ourselves and cut the cotton-wool bullshit. If you look hard at your eating efforts (quality of calories, not just quantity) and exercise efforts (quality, frequency and intensity) it’s a rare day that you could find no room for improvement.

So there!

Pilates! Woo! I’ve just finished session four of a 6-week beginners class. I did a beginners course back in 2002 and absolutely loathed it. Just could not understand the concepts at all, and the convoluted breathing did my head in. But this time round I seem to be getting it, and can actually feel my abs working this time. It’s helping with my lifting too, just being more aware of my posture and using my abs for support.

For the first three weeks I was so paranoid that I was doing it all wrong. I hid up the back of the room, as always. The instructor didn’t come over and correct my form very often. I started to sulk, thinking she wasn’t bothering to help me because I was That Fat Chick Up The Back Of The Class Who Is Beyond Help. I was not worth her instructional while.

But this week when only five people were in the class she was quite chatty, and said how we were making amazing progress. We were up to like Week 10 status rather than Week 4. Well! Huzzah! And then I realised maybe she had not been correcting me because I did not need correction. I assumed that I was so weak and inflexible that she was just going to let me be in my freaky corner, but if I set aside the fat girl paranoia I really think I am getting the hang of this Pilates pilaver. See, it’s never too late to teach a fat dog new tricks!

Had a minor freakout earlier in the week about how to get all my exercise in over the xmas period. First there are all the social occasions to consider, and then my gym’s hours. I go to a Council gym with a very public service approach to opening hours. They are completely closed down between December 23 – January 5, and the cardio suite is closed down from NOW untl January 5 because they are replacing the floors (there goes my treadmill running idea). Plus most of my instructors have said next week is their last week of teaching for the year. Arrgh!

So I made a wee calendar in my trusty notebook for the next month. Filled in all the social/travel stuff. Filled in what classes I can do before the shut-down, then scheduled in home workouts for the other days. I got my weights and some DVDs – Tae-Bo, fitball and some wacky aerobic crap. So even we get eleventy million feet of snow I will have no excuse not to exercise, huzzah! I used to be a Brownie you know, our motto was BE PREPARED.

Oh hang on, that’s the Scouts. The Brownie motto was LEND A HAND. Well I supposed I am technically lending myself a hand, which is rather selfish and not in keeping with the Brownie spirit. But it’s a hand, nonetheless.

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18 thoughts on “Be Prepared

  1. Oh, I’m a scout leader and yes it is Be Prepared. To be truely successful at this whole weight loss thing we need to be prepared….I know if I don’t plan things out and stick to my plan and am prepared it all goes to crap. So, you’re doing quite well at being prepared and there’s nothing wrong with a helping hand even if it’s your own if it helps you get to where you need to get…..hope you are very successful over the Christams holiday I know my biggest thing is to not gain over any of this and to actually lose a few pounds and get into a new set of numbers would be fabulous, so over this long period don’t beat yourself up if you don’t lose anything. Keep it up Diet Girl, we love you! Have a very Merry Christmas.

  2. I applaud you for your preparedness (is that a word???) over the Christmas period. Here in Australia it is bloody hot and my exercise has gone out the window very quickly. I am going to try to find a pool so at least I can go for a swim and burn some of those calories. I too would love to just maintain over the Christmas period – there are too many parties and drinkies to go to!! Have a great Christmas everyone !!

  3. Dietgirl, you utterly rawk, if no one has told you recently. My advice for the holiday season is to be extra good to yourself–spa treatments if you can afford them, cheap mani/pedis and whirlpool soaks if you can’t. Same with clothing–some gorgeous trifle if the wallet says yes, fun accessories if wallet says no. And don’t forget to play, either inside or outdoors. Get plenty of sleep & stay happy; you’ll cruise through the season. Happy holidays!

  4. I totally agree with your comment regarding “plateauing”. If we are honest, it is lack of effort. You are doing a fantastic job – do you realise that most people who lose weight regain it all again in two years? Surely that makes you amazingly successful!

  5. I’m with you on the plateauing. To me a plateau is when you are eating right, exercising right and still the weight isn’t moving. If you are gaining or staying the same cos you’ve not made an effort then it isn’t really a plateau, is it?

    Bummer about the gain but you do sound super dooper organised for the rest of the year. My gym doesn’t close – they are even open Christmas day and, being a sad, pathetic loser, I’m planning to go in for a workout before lunch.

    I know that fat girl paranoia so well. We had a new instructor in spin the other night and he came over and told me to take a rest during one of the long climbs. Of course I was convinced he only said because I’m the fat girl in the class. Then I realised he also said the same thing to a couple of others. Skinny others!

  6. I can’t believe your gym is CLOSED over the holidays??!! That’s just insane, since not only is that the time when we NEED to exercise, but also the time of the year when we actually have some mid-day hours to kill! Strange.

    If everything else fails, remember there’s nothing nicer than going for a long walk when it’s cold & snowing. Even for Aussies! It’s a nice thing to do on a quiet (eerm, boring) boxing day, just walk along for an hour or even longer with a chatty friend.

  7. Hey Shauna, have you considered going back to WW to help you lose the last of the weight? Perhaps it is what you need – face to face group support.
    Maybe you just need a change of direction to help with the last 11kg. NJ

  8. Ha ha, I was a Brownie too. I love that you are so prepared for Xmas, even with the inconsiderate setback of the gym being closed. That handy little notebook of yours will definately see you through.

    Agree on the plateaus too – its usually around this time of year that we all seem to hit one!!

  9. I loved what you said about the plateau thing, and I, myself use that too liberally – just another level to my excuses, oy vey.

    Wow you really are getting organised and it’s spurred me to set out my next week instead of “just winging it” that’s when problems seem to arise.

    OoOO sounds like you had fun in pilates!! I love it but I’m more of a video gal – maybe I should try the classes, are they fun?

    Happy Holidays too!!

  10. I was a Brownie for all of two weeks. I quit and then waited a year and joined Guides. I can’t even remember what the Girl Guide motto was! Yikes! But then again, that was more than 30 years ago…

    Yes, it’s tough to stay focused on one thing for such a long period of time so it’s natural that your efforts can plateau. I’m struggling with the same thing myself.

    My plan for the holidays is to schedule in my workouts around all the events, usually doing them first thing in the morning so that they’re done and I don’t have to worry about them. Do whatever you can outside when your gym is closed. And there’s nothing better than going out for a run (or walk) very early on Christmas morning before all the craziness of presents and breakfast get going. I don my Santa hat, Jingle Bells on my shoes and out the door I go for a nice liesurely 5K. Love it!

  11. Wait, Wait, Wait.

    I’m going to call you on something Shauna.

    “I put on that 0.4kg I lost that week. I was nearly in tears as I stood on the scale at 6.20 this morning. How dare those scales show a gain! After all my efforts! My shoulders were still stinging from Body Pump, my thighs were still aching from RPM, my hips and waist felt narrower… so what gives? ”

    What gives? You are sculpting a new body. You are building gorgeous lean sexy muscles. You’ve lost all this weight, yet you couldn’t rationalise this?

    I totally understand your disappointment, but you need to praise yourself for the amazing changes you are making to your body. Give yourself and your little gain a break.

    You FEEL leaner because you ARE leaner. You have obviously replaced fat with sleek muscle.

    I know you get this. You GET IT.

    Im disappointed that you have been hard on yourself and only focussed on a scale number when you can bet your gorgeous shrinkin butt that your centimetres have shrunk considerably!

    RPM, Body pump AND pilates? Brilliant!!

  12. Man I too have to check out when the gym is open over the holidays. Not that I’ve been going much but I have a theory that with time off work I’ll go a lot. Hmm, we shall see.

    Oh and Pump always makes my next day weight higher and then it drops again. I figure the muscles pull in fluid to repair after you work (effectively tear) them. Did your weight change again?

  13. I feel slack now. Because you are right. I have done the whole plateau thing, and that was probably how I could justify not losing any weight that week, or the week after, or the week after that. Knowing full well, however, that eating a bag of licorice all sorts does not constitute a plateau. It constitutes lucky that the scales didn’t go up..

    Thanks dg. It’s a great post and one that I shall remember when wondering why I didn’t lose. Was there really nothing else I could have done??

    Hope you have a great Christmas. All the best to you and the Scottish Companion.

  14. Hi,

    Just wanted to say that I love your site – I’ve been reading it for about 6 months now, and it’s definitely been one the helping factors in my weight loss, from 90 kilos to my current 67 (it’s taken about 18 months). I’m also at the point where to get to 60 is going to really hurt, and I really have to work my butt off – literally!!

    Interesting article in today’s Melbourne Age that is so true…

    link to theage.com.au

  15. Wow, it seems like you are all set and organized. I too had a rebound recently, but that was due to our crazy Thanksgiving self-gorging traditions. Sigh.

    I’m glad I found another health blog that updates regularly. Many of my reads have been falling off the posting wagon 🙂