Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Days 349 - 367 aka Chapter 2

I have been avoiding writing about reaching my 1 year milestone....how can I  reflect on a year that has been as transforming as the last 365 days?  How can I possibly thank the people that have helped me on my journey? 

I cannot believe that an entire year has passed since I walked through the doors of Geaux Crossfit.  I really am a different person - both physically and mentally.  I mean, I look at the photos of me from before day 1 compared to now, and I cannot believe it is me!  I was so unhappy....with no energy, feeling uncomfortable all the time.  I try to hard to just focus on the present and the future and not get upset  for evening allowing myself to get to that point of unhealthiness..ugh.
 (R) Photo of me at the 2011 St. Patty's Day Parade and (L) 2012 St. Patty's Day Parade

I know that my journey is far from over...I am just beginning another 30 day paleo challenge because my eating was getting a little too lenient..and I have stopped weighing myself until May 1 when the challenge is over.  But now, I am trying to focus less on losing weight and more on being strong and healthy.

Amber and I are ready to race!!
2 weeks ago I ran a 5K!  It was harder than I thought and I probably wouldn't have finished if it wasn't for the girls that ran with me - my FABULOUS trainer Amber (I have a tear in my eye thinking about how important you are to my success...but more on that later, my running buddy Candace (who gets up for the 5am class even though she could go to a later one... ) and Ali (a fellow geaux crossfitter who kept pace with me even though she could probably have done it in half the time).  I am so lucky to have been surrounded by these fabulous women during my first run!
The experience was amazing....I still cannot believe that I did it - and in my fastest time ever - 3.22 miles in 35:48!! It was just another one of those moments when I thought that maybe I really could end up being an athlete.  Before this year, I never thought that was possible.  Dieting was always about losing weight and never about getting strong.  Now, I want to be strong. 

So, my eating has not been great so I am glad to refocus and concentrate on the next 30 days.  I still have to take it one month at a time.  And it seems that every time I don't think I can do it anymore...someone else in my life decides they want to try it out.  So, to support them, I do the 30 day challenge at the same time.  On Monday, Kelly P. and I will be supporting our colleague Kristin as she begins her first 30 day challenge.  Her excitement for it has reignited my passion for all things paleo.  I cannot wait to be part of her journey!  It also helps that she is an excellent cook who will be sharing her recipes with me.  I hope she feels as good as I do when I am eating paleo!

I am just beginning the transition to going to Geaux Crossfit 5 times a week (if my body will allow...after today's WOD I can barely walk).  I am so thankful that my husband and parents have been totally accommodating to support me so I can find the time to go!  I am nervous and excited about it....a year ago I could barely stand two days a week...then I went to three days a week.  And now, after a year of going to Geaux Crossfit, I cannot believe I am ready for 5 days a week!!  It is unbelievable to me!

There is no way I could write my official "1 year" post without again expressing my thanks to my trainer Amber.  Out of everyone on this journey with me, she is the one that truly knows my struggles. Just last night she got me through a mental breakdown I had regarding squats.  While it is very exciting to be doing crossfit for a year, it can be extremely aggravating to not be able to do something like a squat (or a push up or a pull up...or..just about any of the exercises!!).  I have been trying and practicing and trying again but a full squat with correct form is very difficult for me.  I know that, if it was not for Amber, I would have given up a long time ago. I just hope that everyone who decides to take a similar journey can find someone like Amber to be their support, their cheerleader, and the person that pushes them to their limits everyday.
So, Year 2 - I am ready to for you.  In a year from now, I will be posting pictures from March 2012 to compare to the even stronger Bethany of 2013.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Days 335 - 348 aka Oh What a Cheat

I love the Londoner
This weekend was my biggest cheat weekend to date and by the end of it I felt horrible.  I thought for a long time about what I wanted for my cheat meal and ending up choosing a meal at my favorite restaurant in Baton Rouge, the Londoner.  I have eaten at the Londoner numerous times and stayed Paleo.  In fact, when I started out eating Paleo/gluten free one of the first things I did was email the Londoner to find out what my options were.  The manager emailed back with information about the entire menu - it was so great! 

My favorite meal
But, for this meal, I was not looking to go Paleo.  I started with a cup of the clam chowder that was on special and was pleasantly surprised to be served some delicious cheese toast to go with it.  Then I had their shepherd's pie.  I really think it is my favorite food.  It is SOOOOO good!  After that, I headed upstairs to the cupcake shop and got a peanut butter cup cupcake!  I planned to take a photo of it but ate it before I had a chance.  Do I regret my eating choices?  Nope...I am proud that I could have a weekend like this and then refocus on Monday.  It once again makes me feel like Paleo is a lifestyle and is a sustainable way to eat.

By Monday I was feeling like crap.  I was tired and moody (<---my husband will back me up on this one), had an awful headache and just felt nasty.

Thank goodness my cousin Molly has decided to give Paleo a try (YOU CAN DO IT MOLLY!!) so, to support her, I started a strict 30 day challenge on Monday.  The difference in the way I feel is really unbelievable.  I sucked ass during the WOD on Monday...I just wasn't feeling it.  But today was 100% better.  I cannot believe I lived my life not even thinking about (or at least ignoring) the connection between how I feel and what I eat.

Prepared to eat Paleo for the week!
I am very close to making a huge decision..I cannot even believe I am thinking about this because I never thought it was a possibility.  I might try to do Geaux Crossfit 5 days a week!  When I started, I could barely do two days a week and I have been doing 3 days a week for awhile now.  I have been trying to do Planet Fitness on my off days (T/TH) but I am just not feeling it like I do Geaux Crossfit.  It is so hard to push yourself to your limits when you are on a treadmill or other machine...and it is so hard not be get bored..blah...  As soon as it hits 4pm, I start looking to see if the next day's WOD is posted (even on the days I am not going).  The day before a Geaux Crossfit Day (my running buddy) Candace and I usually text back and forth about the next day's WOD.  I just don't feel that excitement with Planet Fitness.  So, I might just upgrade my membership at Geaux Crossfit to full-time status!

This is what eating
right looks like!
My first 5K is on Saturday.  I cannot believe it is so close.  I am nervous and excited..I haven't been running as much as I was for awhile so I am afraid I won't be able to finish it.  I think that, at this point, I am going to need to cross my fingers and hope for the best.  I am so thankful to have so many people from Geaux Crossfit planning to be there to cheer me on.  If I had tried to do this on my own, I can GUARANTEE that I would not show up on Saturday.  But I will be there with my Geaux Crossfit family...running a race that I never thought I would be able to run.  Before now, I have always dieted to be skinny.  I honestly never thought that being strong was an option.  Today, I am feeling strong.