Whole 30 Strikes Again

So, remember when I finished my last Whole 30 challenge and I said I would never do it again?

Yeah, I lied.

Over the past few weeks I’ve made some great changes to get myself moving in the right direction again nutritionally, but have found that I have a tendency to eat my feelings, and massive quantities of chocolate and cheese, on the weekends.

Turns out Patty over at Patty Gets Fit, who also happens to also be a badass chick who also attends my box, kicked off her own Whole 30 this week.  Since I’m a sucker for a support system, I asked if she wanted some company in the challenge and joined her today.

Of course, I first made the time to give myself some serious fondue and wine love last night.  I mean, gotta start this bugger off right after all.

So today marks Day 1.  Unlike last time, I know what to expect and am going into this mentally prepared.  For me, Whole 30 was pretty awful until 3 weeks in and will likely be the same this time around.

However, this time around I have different goals than last time.  Last time was about just surviving it.  This time, I need to learn something from it.  This time around I won’t simply slip back into bad habits as soon as this sucker is over.  I need to pay attention to how much better my body feels and even more importantly, I need to use this knowledge to fuel my desire to be good to myself all the time.

With my training volume kicking up through the winter, I need to make sure I’m eating enough and enough of the right things to keep myself healthy, sleeping well, and of course, losing weight.

As with before, I fully anticipate the biggest hurdle I will battle will be alcohol as it relates to my social life, but this time around I have the tools to stick with the plan and still have a good time.

Be prepared for some crabby WOD posts my readers.  As I’m only in the early hours of Day 1 I’m still feeling pretty good at the moment, but I think we all know that my desire to “kill all the things” lurks just around the corner.

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8.15.2013

Have plans for tonight so I HAD to get out of bed this morning.  Two workouts back to back on less than 12 hours of rest is not ideal.  I have a feeling that walking tomorrow might be more challenging than usual.

Warm Up:  The usual.  My glutes and quads are sore from yesterday.  My right achillies is still killing me too.   Spent some extra time on my calf and rolling it all out this morning.

SWOD: Push Press 3×8
Warm Up: 1×5 strict press, 1×5 push press @ 33
1×8 @ 53
1×8@ 63
1×6 @ 73
1×2@ 73

Sets of 8 are hard.  I love push press, and recently worked up to 83 on this lift for a short set (of 3 I think).  I’ve gained strength since then, so I was hopeful I could get thru the set at 73.  Close, but no cigar.   EVERY TIME I feel this lift get heavy and think that I’m going to fail my rib cage comes up and I arch my back.  I even feel myself doing it.  On rep 6 of that set I corrected it and completed the rep.  Couldn’t seem to fix it on rep 7 though.  Form is really the key here, need to keep practicing.

WOD:

3 RFT
10 hang power clean
7 shoulder to overhead any way
Run 400 m

Time: 13:26 (I think) at 53 lbs

YAY for clean and shoulder to overhead.  I love love love both these movements.  I’m also really proud of myself as I considered doing this at 43 lbs so that I wouldn’t finish last, but went ahead and loaded up the barbell with weight I knew I was capable of.  I finished last, but who cares?  It was a great WOD.

I had a great moment on the last lap of the run with a few classmates.  There were three of us, and we were all struggling.  I stopped to walk for a minute and got some encouragement and coaching from one of them.  He stopped to walk shortly after and I gave the cheers right back to him.  In the end the three of us sprinted it in together and finished within a few seconds of eachother.  Very cool to have that kind of support around you when you’re suffering.

Life After Whole 30: Who knew I had food-emotions?

After I had my slight psychological break and went on this rant  last week, I received a lot of great support both from my readers here and the people who know me in real life and stalk me on facebook.

Not surprisingly, I’m not alone in my feeeeeeelings about food.

Or perhaps that is better phrased as my feelings ABOUT my feelings about food.  Yup, you’re gonna have to read that sentence at least three times.  It’s ok.  I’ll wait.

Sadly, I don’t come to you today, on the final day of my Whole 30 with all the answers.  In fact, I don’t really have any more than I had last week.  I continue to make myself aware when I’m eating for emotional reasons, and I’m continuing to try to understand the link between the two.

Today  the male half of my favorite blogging couple Bob, of Bob and Meg over at (Not As) Big Bob  wrote the first part of what will be a five part series on his feelings about an article he read recently called the Stigma of Obesity.

First off, check out Bob’s post.  Insightful stuff.  I’m always amazed at his knowledge and perspective and how, even though we are two very different people, we struggle with some very similar things.

In “The Stigma of Obesity” the author references an article by a physician at an obesity clinic with a group of bariatric surgeons written by Karen Hitchcock.  Being on this kind of quest for knowledge about the how’s and whys behind food in culture, I read it.

Karen Hitchcock, you are kind of the cat’s meow to me right now.

Sure, it’s written from the perspective of a skinny person who has always been skinny, understood moderation, and self-control.  In the first paragraph or two, I kind of want to slap her.  But then she took me along this journey of tough love and being on the other side of the coin when it comes to the obesity epidemic that is affecting our world as we know it.

Below is an excerpt from her article “Fat City-What can stop obesity?”  Please, follow the link and read the rest.  I admit, it’s not short or a quick read, but her perspective has given me a bit of a new one of my own.

This won’t be the last blog about this, but hopefully instead the first of many in my quest for knowledge, and ultimately health.

 

“I once attended a hospital lecture on the genetic determinants of obesity delivered by a specialist physician. The doctor giving the talk was very fat. As he went on, his face got red and stains of sweat spread from his armpits. Obesity is genetic, he argued, wiping his brow: obesity is a disease. He said: If you make a fat person thin, you are sentencing them to a lifetime of hunger.

This depends on your definition of hunger. Eating is not a purely rational, biological act. I can give you a diet that will keep you full all day and make you lose weight, but it won’t be very entertaining: it will be mainly made up of watery vegetables like cabbage and celery, egg whites and very lean meat. The pain of abstinence, of unmet desire, is something quite separate from the pain of an empty stomach. The pleasures of eating are complex and multifaceted. In our society, consumption is a form of entertainment and pleasure. Eating is part of this: from the theatre of a meal at a fine-dining establishment to a bag of chips augmenting the television-viewing experience. Most people do not overeat because of a feeling of hunger emanating from the stomach; they are giving in to a desire to consume – they are seeking pleasure or relief, or hoping to fill a void.”**

**Bold content has been done by me to emphasize the points that most hit home, not by the origional author.**

Whole 30: Day 30 Report

Well hello kittens.  For anyone keeping track, today is Day 30.

Confession, I went off a bit on Friday and haven’t really come back “on” since, so truly, I only made it to day 26.  While there is a tiny part of me that’s disappointed for not making it the full 30 days, I’m not too terribly worried about it.

I believe that I gained what I hoped to from this program:  a better understanding of my eating habits, my emotional triggers, and how much alcohol I was actually consuming.

Here’s the deal, I didn’t take measurements on the front end because the very thought about made me want to cry.  Yeah, I get that I would probably enjoy the data and like knowing how many total inches I lost and all that jazz, but the thought of someone actually wrapping a tape measure around my thigh about made me physically ill.

So I decided not to put myself through that.

No matter, all the pants I was wearing when the Whole 30 started are too big now.  I know I’ve lost inches without having the hard data, and it feels great.

I also have lost a total net of 8 lbs.  At one point, because I was a naughty girl and weighed myself a handful of times, I was down about 10.  After some booze and “fun” food this weekend, it looks like I’ve leveled out around 8.

But truly, I don’t even care about the number on the scale.  My body is smaller and leaner, I have more energy, and I’ve seen some other great changes.

My skin is super clear.  My heartburn is completely gone.  I’ve only had one bout of insomnia in the past 30 days, and it was very early on in the challenge.

I’m happy.  Like, all the time.

Moving forward, there are habits I’ve changed that I plan to maintain.  There is no need to drink every night of the week.  While I certainly had some fun this past weekend, I would like to set a goal for myself of one night of drinking per week.  I was completely able to go out and have fun and not drink, which resulted in my sleeping better and having more energy the next day.  That is a habit I would like to keep.

I likely won’t ever reintroduce grain on purpose into my diet.  Sure, I won’t be as neurotic about gluten as I’ve been these past 30 days, but my stomach is happier than I’ve ever known it to be.  I haven’t missed it much at all, and see no reason to add in something that clearly has been causing me irritation for years.

But you better believe I’m having sushi like, ASAP.  Rice.  Nom nom nom.

In summary, I was happy to do the Whole 30 and happy to have a great group to do it with.  I’m not going to like or sugar coat it, it was really hard for me.  I’m not sure I’ll ever do it again, but I WILL take the things I’ve learned from it and use them often as I continue on this path to fitness and health.

Things not to exclaim out loud in front of young children, or anyone for that matter

Coach:  It’s been so long since I’ve seen you!  You look great.  How’s it going?

Me:  It’s going awesome.  I’m losing weight everywhere.  Like, look at these pants (grabbing all the excess fabric in the crotch area), they’ve even big here!  I mean, who would knew it’s possible to lose weight in your vagina?

Coach: Uh, um, oh my god Nicole who says that?

Big surprise, the fat kid is obsessed with food

cookie-monster-cookies-orig

I am obsessed with food.

Obsessed. 

I think about it all the time.  If I’m not eating, I’m thinking about what I will eat next.  Whether or not it’s healthy.  If I’m going out to eat I pep talk myself ahead of time about food I will avoid because it’s “bad,” and then I usually end up ordering it because it’s all I’ve thought about all day.

Over the course of the Whole 30 it’s been a bit better.  There’s an approved list and anything outside of that I can’t eat.  But now, with less than a week left to go, all I can think about are all of the “bad” things that I “can” eat one week from today.

This can’t be healthy.

In fact, I know it isn’t.  This thought process is the exact reason why I have so many issues with my weight.

I once went to a shrink who talked to me on end about my “relationship with food.”  I remember thinking at the time how freaking dumb that sounded.  It’s FOOD.  I don’t care about the cow’s feelings, I just want to eat it.

In hindsight, maybe she had a point.  It doesn’t matter how the cow felt, it matters that, when I devour the cow in mass ground up quantities topped with cheese, bbq sauce and bacon, I FEEL better… if only for a moment.

Then, the reality of the situation sinks in and I feel guilty.  I regret the choice as I know it’s not great for weight loss.  I know if I want to physically look like I believe that I want to look, I need to eat things that aren’t “bad” for me.  And so the negative self-talk continues and my obsession with food grows and grows.

Why is it “good” or “bad?”  Why can’t I just eat moderate portions of what I want, enjoy them, exercise, and be healthy?  Does it really REALLY need to be this complicated?

I don’t have a good answer.  Heck, as someone who is literally manically plotting what my first “cheat” meal will be after my 30 days is up, I think it’s pretty clear that I’m about the furthest thing from an expert on this subject.

What I DO know is that I probably need to keep examining the WHY behind all of this, hopefully without making myself even more crazy.  I’ve said it before and I’m certain I will say it again many many times, but if I can at least understand why I’m doing something or behaving in a specific way, I’m one step closer to potentially changing that pattern or that behavior.

I don’t want to be obsessed.  At least not with food.  I would rather pick something mutually beneficial… you know, like sex.

7.29.2013

Been awhile since I’ve done a WOD post.  Not to worry, haven’t missed any, I’m an addict.

So we’re officially in the new box.  The word INCREDIBLE doesn’t even begin to describe this place.  They literally built, from the ground up, a Crossfit playground that’s the side of your average Wal-Mart.  Every single piece of equipment in the place is brand new, but that’s not even the best part.  The best part, to me, is that we have everything.  Literally, enough rowers that we can do rowing WODs.  Benches to bench press.  Slam balls.  Fat bars.  Monekey Bars.  SHOWERS.  I’m in complete awe.  I am so SO proud to be part of this group and to see the success of our box.

I went to highschool with the owner, Pervy-but-we-love-him-anyway-coach, and as silly as this is, it makes me really proud for him to open the doors on this place.  We didn’t exactly grow up in a booming metropolis where kids were achieving their dreams, and for him to do this, it’s really something.  So YAY!  We now have tortures that I hadn’t even imagined existed to be exposed to.  But first thing is first, need to break in the first WOD in the new place right.

SWOD: Push Press 4×5
1×5 @ 33 warm up
1×5@ 53 warm up
1×5@ 63
2×5@ 73
1×5@ 78

I felt really weak going into this, but kept focusing on a big push and keeping my rib cage down.  I was really happy getting that 78 overhead 5 times.

WOD: Squat Grace

Time: ?? @ 30lbs

So I had really good intentions of doing this heavy, but by the time we got to the WOD I was feeling really REALLY weak and lightheaded.  I went at night, and think that I didn’t eat enough during the day.  Which, when I reviewed my food log later that day, was totally correct.  I’m still on Whole 30 (day 22 baby!), but am at the point where I’m just not hungry.  I had a super busy day at work and forgot that I only ate about half my lunch, leaving out a big hunk of protein AND fat.  Bad idea.

So needless to say, my WOD suffered.  I went super light and just got thru it.  And then went home and ate half a cow and a whole avocado.  Man I felt better after that.

Mmmmm.  Coooowwww.

7.23.2013

Warm Up- The usual.  I’m surprisingly not sore *yet*.  Everyone at 6 a.m. was saying how sore they were from yesterday, but since they’re 24 hours later and I’m only 12, I have a feeling I’m not going to start hurting until tonight.  Joy

SWOD: Snatch (technique work)
5×4 @33

So Snatch is definitely my weakest lift.  Some days I have the rhythm and can feel things click and then some days (like today), I know I’m pulling too early and I just can’t get my body to do things in the right order.

I know the answer to this is to practice more, and I think if I put more weight on the bar I might force myself to do it right, but this morning I didn’t.

It probably didn’t help that I was dizzy from pretty much the warm up on, so I was taking really long breaks.

Blah blah blah Whole 30, I’m sick of excuses.  I like the way my body is looking as a result of this, but if I don’t get my energy back for Crossfit very soon, I’m going to be one cranky bunny.

WOD:
How far can you get in 12 minutes of:

5 hang power snatch
5 OH Squat
30 double unders

10 hang power snatch
10 OH Squat
30 double unders

Score: 15+3 @33 with singles

Not much to say about this.  It was hard, I was dizzy the whole time, so I did all the lifting in sets of 5 and had to take a ton of time between those sets to put my head between my knees and get my HR back down.

Evidently my body is being more stubborn than most in figuring out how to eat my ass fat for energy during workouts.

Day 16.  Over half way.  Thank god.

7.22.2013

Warm Up- The usual mix of panting sweating running and yoga.

SWOD: Press 4×5
Warm Up 1×10 @33
1×5 @53
2×5@ 63
1×3@68

Clearly, I failed the last two reps of the last set.  I re-racked and tried again, and failed that attempt as well.  I could feel myself arching my back, but just couldn’t correct my darn form.  Grumble.

I was happy that I was able to get in any reps at 68, as last time I wasn’t.

WOD: 3 Rounds

2 min AMRAP
5 burpees
10 air squats

Rest 1 minute

2 min AMRAP
5 jumping lunges (each leg)
10 ring rows

Rest 1 minute

Score: 173 (I think)

This was one of those WOD’s that looked fun on paper.  And I mean, I guess in hindsight it was fun, but man it kicked my ass.  It was really hot (duh it’s summer in Florida and I’m working out at the hottest part of the day GENIUS), and after the first round I was feeling it.  By the last round, I actually had to sit down during the one minute rest, but I finished.

I would whine more about Whole 30, but honestly, I’m sick of hearing myself say it.  So instead I’m just going to say, I did my absolute best in this workout.  I literally gave it everything I had, and that’s what matters at the moment.

7.19.2013

Another evening workout for me.  I miss my 6 a.m. peeps, but lately my body is just needing the sleep it seems.

Warm Up- Yoga one.  Captain America was teaching this class and made us do some other odd bendy things, but it was mostly the same.

SWOD: Weighted Pull Ups 5×3

Since I have yet to do a single band assisted pull up due to being absolutely petrified of heights, this was a little daunting.

We paired up, and my first attempt involved me shaking like a leaf and feeling like I was going to vomit.  I kind of just hung there, then called “uncle” and got down.

Not sure what clicked, but after that first attempt I chalked up my hands, had my partner wrap about a thousand bugee cords around me, and I managed to get the 15 reps the coaches called for.  I had to use both the green AND blue bands to get my big ass up there, but I can honestly say I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited to successfully do something as I was to do these.

In the end, I think a lot of my fear was because my grip strength was so poor I was worried the bands were going to sling shot me upwards at ramming speeds, my grip would give out, and I would end up flying backwards over the bar, whapping my head, and waking up with severe brain damage and short term memory loss.  None of this happened, so of course, I want to try it again soon.

WOD:
3 RFT
50 Russian KB swings
14 push ups
10 Hang Power Snatch

Time: 14:49 (I think???) w/25lbs kb and 33 lbs for Snatch

I really think I died in the middle of this WOD.  I’m just going to hope that one of the super hot guys that were doing it right along side me gave me mouth to mouth and restarted my heart and I just don’t remember it.

The thing about these really hard WOD’s is that there’s always a highlight or two that make me smile and help me eek out another rep or two.  First highlight was Captain America shouting at me around the half way point, “come on Nicole, you need to finish this WOD so you have something to blog about.”  Smartass.

The next was near the end of the WOD when I was fighting harder not to vomit than I was to finish the workout and Whole-30-Partner-In-Crime-Girl says, “pick up that kettle bell and swing it like you’re trying to hit some skinny bitch in the face.”  I’m not normally a violent person, but by God that got another 10 reps out of me when I didn’t think I had even one.

In the end I finished and collapsed in a puddle for a solid 10 minutes.  An observation- until I get through the hard part of Whole 30, I think I need to scale more than I have been.  There were lighter options available for both the KB and the Snatch, and had I taken them I probably could have finished this workout with the rest of the class.

I think I get so caught up in pushing myself hard and not taking any steps back that I’m scared to use lighter weights , but if there were ever a time to do it, now is it.