Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Workin' on my fitness...

I don't know why I insist on using titles that are lyrics from songs - I always get irritated when the song gets in my head! 

There, did that do it for you, too?  A little BEP before bed? :P

So my first official full day of being thirty!  It was...meh, same as any other busy day at the office, I guess!  Unfortunately, I didn't wake up this morning with a fount of wisdom that I didn't have on Monday at 11:59 pm. I didn't feel older or necessarily wise by any means, but I'm glad to say that I'm skinnier stronger!

As you can see, I had originally put skinnier in there until after I had typed it, I realized that when I really stop and think about it, this whole journey into a new lifestyle so far has completely evolved from just about being skinny.  To be honest, of course it was at first - no matter what anyone says, while they're busy spouting off reasons like "being healthier, happier, having more energy" blah blah blah, what it all really comes down to is that most people go on a diet or a health kick to look better - because they don't like what they see in the mirror.  I guess I shouldn't generalize, so to be more specific, I'm talking about me personally.

CONFESSION: I think this is what first got me in trouble with that fitness assessment person at the gym.  When she asked me what brought about my decision to go join, I didn't have all these inspirational hopes and dreams that included discovering a whole new me while spending time at her gym.  I didn't want to lie and I can't really stand that kind of stuff coming out of my mouth since at the time, I didn't really have a good reason.  I saw pictures of the gym that looked like a fancy hotel and I wanted to join it so I could go a few times and then never go back but somehow still get skinny in the process.  In hindsight, I'm wondering if she didn't just think I wasn't taking all of this seriously.  It was hard to just jam pack it all in a was just so many little things that have happened over the course of years all rolled into one so that one day, with no particular reason at all, I found myself waving a void cheque around and begging them to take my money.  Maybe I should have gone with the "I realized my butt was dangerously close to no longer fitting on the toilet seat" reason.  Because it sure was one of them.  Or how about "I was tired of having to lift up flaps of skin in order to wash body parts?" or "When I smile, my cheeks push  my eyes closed?" Because that happened, too!  It just seemed a bit much for someone that I had just met - who also looked like she'd never spent one iota of her life ever having to fathom reasons such as those, let alone live them.  Ah, snap judgements all around, I guess...

But here we are THREE days from it being exactly four months ago to the day when I walked out of her office and vowed that I could do everything she said I couldn't do without a personal trainer.  She told me it would take me at least a year or intense personal training sessions for me to get to my "goal" weight (which incidentally, she told me was still too high for my height *LOL*) and here we are 4 months in and I'm halfway there.  Although, I guess I shouldn't really brag about it - I have this intense fear that the last four months have just been lulling me into a false sense of security and it will actually take me another 8 months to lose the remaining half.  So maybe pretend I didn't just smugly mention those last parts.

Where is all this walk down fitness lane coming from?  Yesterday I mentioned that I finally finished the Insanity program.  Although I didn't follow it EXACTLY (it took me way longer than 60 days since I didn't do it every day like it suggested I do) because I had gym classes and Frisbee games in between days, I still worked my way through the schedule exactly as it was laid out and one by one, I crossed off those workout days.  Finishing felt pretty good.  I could feel the difference in my body and I could tell I was improving, but from a girl who is motivated by check-marking boxes, I'm all about quantitative measurements.  It didn't feel real until today when I did the fitness test which is meant to be done at Day 63 for the last workout of the program, but I did turned it into a two-fer so it could also double as my Insanity Cycle 2: Day 1.

You know the thing about math?  It's the same in any language (yes, you can totally call me out that that was from Mean Girls) but it's still true.  Numbers don't lie.

As for me?  I am loving these numbers:

I usually get my measurements done by my co-worker at work every Wednesday, but we didn't get a chance to do them today because it was so busy, but here's measurements from last week compared to my first fitness test on October 14th:

Starting Stats / Finishing StatsWeight: 199.2 lbs / 166 lbs
Waist: 43 in / 38.25 in (-4.75)
Hips: 43 in / 41.25 in (-1.75)
Bust: 46 in / 42 in (-4)
Left Thigh: 25 in / 23.25 in (-1.75)
Neck: 15 in / 13.75 in (-1.25)
Shoulder: 22.5 in / 21 in (-1.5)
Left Bicep: 13 in / 12 in (-1)

Overall in those areas, I've lost 33.2 lbs and 16 inches.

Well, it's not my faaaavourite before and after picture, but it's the only before and after picture that I've got so I'll take it!  Gotta start somewhere, right?  So instead of calling this before and after, I'm going to call it my before and during - because I'm not done yet!

Today was also the kick-off for the 10-week weight-loss challenge at work, so I'm kind of excited for that too. 

There's a lot of competitive people at work, so the trash talking has already started *LOL* It's all in good fun and in reality, I'm hoping that it helps a lot of people out.  And then in deeper reality, I'm hoping that I win.  I'm trying not to get too caught up in it and the competition and the pot and lose sight of what it's really about.  I just want to look at it as an added little push for me, but in reality, I want to keep reminding myself that I was already doing this before the challenge began and I was going to continue doing this before I knew the challenge even existed, so basically I'm just going to keep on keeping on.  Whatever happens after the ten weeks are up, if I keep trying to better myself and push myself the way that I've been doing for the last four months, I will be proud no matter what!

That's it from me today!  Thanks so stopping by, hope to get some blogging time in tomorrow!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Thoughts on Thirty...

Today is a big day for me.  Perhaps that's why I'm still up - trying to soak up every minute of it and sad to see it go.
It's my 30th birthday today!

But I think it's more than that.  I know I love my birth day but this year, it's so much more than a numerical milestone for me.  I got the BEST gift (you know, besides the gift of LIFE and all) and it came from me!
I gave myself a chance and I'm entering my thirties feeling the most proud of myself that I've felt in a long time.
I feel like my sentences are jumping around all over the place and I guess it's because I've got so many things running through my mind - or I just finished working out and my endorphins are working overtime!  Whichever it is, I hope I make sense and that I don't lose you!
I'm going to describe my twenties as the experimental stage.  For a while, I was looking at it the wrong way and feeling down that I was describing myself as the starter/non-finisher.  I started many hobbies and stopped them cold turkey without ever really looking back.  For a while, I figured that that was just who I was.  The girl who starts stuff and never really finishes or sees anything through. And even though it got me down every once in a while, overall, I seemed to be okay with this assessment. 
Now that I've dipped my big toe into this ocean of 30, I feel like I want to look at life from this side a bit differently.  Now, instead of thinking that I'm just this big giant quitter (though perhaps I really was), I'd like to think of it as trying out new things.  What's the point of trying new things out and experiencing new things if you restrict yourself to the fact that if you try this "thing" that you can ONLY do this "thing" forever and ever.
I tried cardmaking, scrapbooking, stamping, etc. and realized I loved it.  And then I moved on.  It doesn't mean that I will never do it again, but I've experienced it.  I know it.  I liked it.  I can put it aside and I know it will wait there for me again until life has a place for it again.  I tried running.  Nowhere in there did I ever feel like I loved it, but I finished the C25K program and I ran a 5K and there it was.  Instead of thinking that I just quit, I'm going to allow myself permission to realize that I didn't love it as much as everyone said I should feel I should, so I can move on.  I did it.  Not loving it and not wanting to do it all the time doesn't make me a quitter.  I tried baking and cake decorating.  I liked it, realized I was moderately good at it and unfortunately, even if I was going to describe it as quitting, it's not as easy to quit from.  *LOL* Apparently, once people know you make cakes, you can't make them forget as fast as they forgot you used to be a 'runner'.  And unfortunately for me (and fortunately for them!), I have a hard time saying no. 
Anywho, I've digressed. 

It's hard not to look back and reflect after hitting some significant moments.  What I've been trying to get around to mentioning is that today also marks the day that I finish my very first round of Insanity.  I've got a wall calendar with 62 checkmarks all over it - one for every work out box.

I DID IT.  I have started my 30th year on a fitness streak...and I gotta say, it feels pretty darn good!  30 year old Catherine can do 100% more push-ups than 29 year old Catherine and that already means so much more to me! 30 year old Catherine can also fit into ALL the clothes in 29 year old Catherine's closet - even those ones that have been hanging around in there for YEARS! 

I gotta say that 30 year old Catherine is feeling pretty darn smug right about now - although I think I'd like to refer to it as PROUD.

Gonna end here for now as I have way too many thoughts running around through my head and if I try to think through all of them just to get them blogged, I'll never get a post up!  Hope 30 year old Catherine updates her blog more, though! :P


Sunday, January 13, 2013

One Week

So now of course I have that BNL song stuck in my head!  You too? What? No way, what a coincidence! :P

It's been one of those weeks that felt like it dragged on forever while it was going and now that it's over, it feels like it flashed by in the blink of an eye.  How'd that happen?

Been keeping busy as usual and of course that isn't enough!  I had to find more ways to distract myself!  But there's two significant things to this week that just dragged on and flew by.  One: I got myself an iPod Touch and second, I am officially down to my LAST week of Insanity.  I know!  It's insane!

So first things first, the iPod thing is kind of a big deal because I'm a pretty anti-Apple kinda girl.  Well, maybe I shouldn't generalize since that doesn't seem to be true anymore.  So let's be more specific and say that I'm an anti-iPhone kind of girl as I've got two feet firmly rooted in camp BlackBerry.  This girl already has the BB10 on reserve, may I add!  It was almost a make-or-break in our marriage when my husband decided he wanted to try the iPhone - so much so that I may have yelled that he could try a hooker, but he can't try an iPhone!  But I digress...

Since I also have a dirty little secret:

CONFESSION: I really like Instagram.

...and unfortunately, Instagram?  Well, she's not on BlackBerry.  What is a girl to do!? 

I tried though, I really did.  I got Molome and tried to make do.  It almost felt like Instagram, but let's face it: it wasn't.

Since the iPhone in our marriage debacle, I've since relaxed and have also clarified that the earlier outburst was not to be taken literally and that it was not (nor ever was) an option that was on the table.  It probably helped a little that since trying out the iPhone, my husband has been experiencing a lot of drawbacks and has conceded that the iPhone doesn't do a lot of the things he had been using his BlackBerry for business-wise.  So, ha! Vindicated. 

Like all things electronic, Bart had actually expected me to take over his iPhone, despite my very vocal arguments against it.  He knows me and regardless of what brand it is, he knows I can't resist anything that powers on and has an LCD touch screen.  He was quite surprised when I didn't immediately appropriate myself within his iPhone world, but I think I'm losing focus of my post as it's not meant to be an iPhone vs. BlackBerry reflection.  This is really about Instagram...and how I fell in love!

I mean, it offers the capacity to take photos, edit them, make them pretty and then share them and get comments and feedback and love.  It's this little Asian girl's dream!

So blah blah blah, long story short, I made a compromise and got an iPod Touch!  I rep my BlackBerry and I get Instagram!

YESSSSS! So of course, I've been busy snap-clickin'-editing-posting!  Basically, all around Instagrammin'!

So celebrating one week of Instagrams and one week of Insanity left!  I know I'm probably speaking too soon, but I can't WAIT to start cycle two just so I can see/tell if there's a difference to how I do the first month's workouts!

  1. Trying to get back into the insanity that is Insanity.
  2. My mom got me the Zumba workout as part of an early birthday present.  I couldn't figure out which one to I did both!
  3. Wednesdays are still my favourite day of the week! I have officially entered the 160s!
  4. As much as I LOVE my gadgets and gizmos, I just can't go into Chapters without walking out with some books!  As much as I hated the return to Sweet Valley - I couldn't stop myself from getting the next book, and Cecelia Ahern, author of P.S. I Love You has been a long-time favourite of mine!  Everyone needs a little mindless, silly, imaginative reading to wind down!
  5. The 8th last checkmark I will mark on this calendar!
  6. I love birth-month!  Who ever said that you only celebrate the DAY?  Part 2 of my mom's birthday present to me: a trip to Lulu Lemon to celebrate my fitness success so far (two birds with one stone - she heard me say I needed to pick up some new workout outfits and she couldn't think of anything else to get me!)
  7. As much as I love Insanity and what it's helped me do to my body, Sundays are my FAVOURITE days because it's Ultimate Frisbee day!  It may or may not have a lot to do with the cute, colourful socks I get to wear!
  8. Clean-eating junk food?  Probably closer to junk, but I tried my best! *LOL* It's been a while since Bart and I have had tacos so we had chicken tacos using low sodium taco seasoning on whole wheat tortilla shells!  Instead of sour cream, I made guacamole with avocados, tomatoes, onions and lemon juice and instead of lettuce, we used shredded baby spinach (not as a healthy substitute, but because I forgot to buy lettuce)!  It was faaantastic!
Tomorrow begins my first foray into the last week of Insanity!  I plan to go as hard as I can to make the most of it!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Insanity: The Countdown is ON!

So I must have lost it somewhere here or there in my Insanity day counts, but I figured with just a little over one week left to do before I finish the whole program, I think I can start counting from the opposite end!

I'm typing and I can't really believe that it's actually true.  I can STILL remember when I first started Insanity and how daunting it completely was.  Hanging up the calendar and seeing all those boxes to check off.  And now there's more checkmarks than blank boxes!

Heck, I can do pushups, yo! PUSH UPS!

CONFESSION: I can be in the middle of a sentence or yelling at someone and get totally distracted when I cross my arms.  I'd be like, "Oh YEAH?!!?! Well - ooooh, muscles! I have MUSCLES!  Feel my arm!  Feel it! It's all hard and stuff!" Wanna know where the beach is? *flex* It's right...over...there!

I think it's solely because of this that I have become a bit of a workout snob.

Before, when I just wanted to lose weight and didn't care how, it was just about burning calories.  And when you watch too much TV or infomercials, companies are totally banking on that.  They'll get you to buy *insert any product here* while promising that you'll lose weight.  And I was good with that!  But after going through the Insanity program (I'm becoming VERY aware of how dangerously close to an infomercial I'm starting to sound like!) I'm seeing all these differences besides weight loss and all of a sudden, it's not just about losing weight.  It's really changed me!  I LOVE knowing that before this all started, I couldn't do even ONE push up.  Not even half of one.  It was start in plank position and go straight down into a faceplant.  That's all the game I had.  And now...while I'm not all there yet, I can bang out about 15 of them!  Dying through the warmup?  And now getting through it and seeing myself get stronger and stronger with cleaner technique.  Who wouldn't love that?! 

Besides the physical changes - now this is where it will sound a bit corny - but it's changed me on the inside as well.  To be honest, it's not a night and day change...I'm still completely lazy, but the difference is that 9 of 10 times, I find a way to push past the laziness and just get 'er done.  I said when I first started all of this that I wasn't on a diet and that this was a lifestyle change, but there was still that part of me that was waiting for me to give up and watch this be just another one of my fads/hobbits that I get tired of and quit.  But here I am, almost four months in and I'm still here!  I still have a long way to go, but I've made my stand.  Let's just say I dug deeper and I've got some roots down in this crazy journey to health and fitness. 

I'm not saying that I'm not going to have any setbacks, but I think I like where I am and where I'm headed. 

...and with that quick update, it's time to ZUMBAAAA!

My mom got this for me as an early birthday present and has been calling almost every day asking if I've started it and I've been telling her I haven't had the time, so it's time to get it in!

Have a great night everyone!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Goal: 35 before 30

I guess you could say that I'm off to a slow start in 2013.  I blame in on the holidays, but I guess that's what everyone else would be saying too.  So I'm going to go with blaming it on Cuba. *LOL*

It's definitely hard to stay on track while vacationing away.  I have many witnesses who can attest to the fact that I tried really hard to behave - they have also pointed out to me how verbally annoying I was about it with my constant whining, but I digress.

The first time I went to Cuba in May, I didn't really notice anything was missing food-wise because that was prior to the new lifestyle change.  So basically all I ate was bread, pasta and lobster.  This time around, with bread and past out (I had to keep the lobster - sans butter though, if that at all helps my case!) I was turning to fresh fruits and vegetables and anything they had going on the grill.  For the most part, I would classify my Cuban diet as mostly paleo as the only thing I felt okay eating was protein.  I did try to do vegetables every once in a while, but as Cuban resorts as well as parents all over the world have discovered, people will eat vegetables more if their covered in butter, and that's how pretty much all the dishes came - vegetables and even rice!

Since returning from vacation, I'm finding it a tad difficult to get back into the groove of things - although I'm sure it has everything to do with my mindset as opposed to any other outside factors actually making it difficult for me to refocus.

Unfortunately for my husband, I have a surefire way to jumpstart motivation and get me inspired to get moving again. 


Inspiring TV shows and stories don't move me like buying a new workout outfit or fitness gear!  If my husband is lucky, a couple of tops usually get me set, on his unlucky days, it's a gadget that captures my fancy - though he's not complaining at my need for us to both have Nike+ FuelBands.  They've definitely given us a competitive edge lately!

Considering it's after vacation and the holidays, I kept my fitness gear shopping to a minimum - especially since I wasn't even planning on picking anything up!  I had accompanied my coworker to Old Navy over our lunch hour and while she was browsing through the kids' section, I moseyed on over to their active wear and noticed the giant 40% off signs!  I mean, you just can't ignore 40% signs!

Teal and purple sports bras as well as teal and purple tops (I took a chance and got the purple one in a Medium so it doesn't exactly fit...yet!) for $11 each!
As we were headed back to work, we had to walk through The Bay and gee-golly-gosh, something else caught my eye!

 I heart this running jacket!  I believe it's by London Fog and of course it was on SALE!  What was even better about it was that it was on further sale from the sale price that I was already okay with! 

Bart asked me if my purchasing this jacket meant I was ready to start jogging outside again.'s still early days yet.  I just finally got motivated to start thinking about reuniting with Shaun T, I don't want to overdo things by gallivanting around outside as well!  Bart just doesn't understand baby steps!  *LOL*

With the new year also comes one more inevitable moment.  My birthday - and this year is the big THREE OH for me!  Bart is currently planning me a birthday party (CONFESSION: Okay, so perhaps I'm doing most of the planning and then making Bart send out all the invites and telling him to tell everyone he planned it all) and I've made a little mini goal in the hopes of reaching 35 lbs lost before I turn 30!  (CONESSION: I'm actually hoping it's more like 40 before 30, but we'll see!)  I've already got a dress in mind to wear to paint the town red that evening, but it's just the teeeensiest, tiniest bit too tight (I look very tightly, though lovingly encased by the dress as of right now) so I'm hoping by the time party time rolls around, it'll be a comfortable fit! 

One good way to ensure that?  Is to get up off my butt!  Shaun T is calling! 
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