I had no idea.
I guess I should have, but I really didn't.
I had no idea how writing about my weight would resonate with so many people. I certainly didn't predict the response, but I am changed by it.
Thank you. Everyone.
The private notes. The comments. The support. The empathy.
It's really wonderful to know that Mom was right -- if you put positive and honest things out there into the world, you will get the same back.
Monday was a rougher day for me than I would have liked. I was really affected by this, mainly because once I said -- OUT LOUD -- that I was unhappy with my current weight and wanted to change it, I was committed to it. I don't usually say anything like that without making sure it happens. I only once said I was going to stop drinking. I only once said I was going to stop smoking.
Oh goodness. I just said I was going to lose weight.
Well. There you have it. Time to do it.
Tenacity is something I got from my Dad. He would never admit I got any positive quality from him -- asserting in the contrary that it was my Mom that passed on all my attributes. But my tenacity is from my Dad.
He's a researcher. Of somewhat a obscure classical musician. In a land far away (okay, Germany). In a far off time. Francesco Antonio Rosetti.
And he didn't just research this man's work and life, he slowly and surely learned everything there was to know about him, his world, who he knew, what he touched, how it came to be...everything. He cataloged every single piece of work this composer wrote. Every. Single. One.
The catalog is thousands upon thousands of pages. It took him 26 years to write.
That, my friends, is tenacity.
And I have those genes. I am my father's daughter.
It's go time on the weight issue. And let me assure everyone who wrote about crash diets and extreme measures. That's not what I'm about and (thankfully) this isn't fueled by emotions that would elicit those types of decisions. I'm healthy now, I'll stay healthy through this.
But what I will say is that this is going to be more than just cutting back on chocolate and drinking more water. As I was saying to a girlfriend of mine this week over email -- if it were that easy, I would have achieved my goal weight by now. For me -- because of biology or genes or history or whatever -- I will need to go beyond what works for others.
I've already tried the preliminary tactics. Seriously, I've been heavy most of my adult life...I've tried most of the daily tricks people suggest. In fact, I've incorporated many of them into my daily habits already (lots of water, avoid too many sugars, whole grains, lean proteins). And while it's frustrating (okay, enraging) to have to continually respond to suggestions that I just try _blank_, it means that I'm already in a good place. But it also means I'm in a challenging position, because even in this good place, I am overweight.
Here's where I'm starting from...
Activity: well, duh. I train typically 5 - 12 hours a week. Swim, bike, run, weights/core. I work with a fabulous coach who is not only on board with this effort, but is a source of really (really) realistic advice and a commitment to my health. And my winning. It's a good mixture.
Eating: I don't eat fried. I prefer lean meats and I adore vegetables. I bake or saute almost everything. I pack my lunch almost every day. I never touch fast food. I read and understand labels. I am comfortable (ney, excel!) in the kitchen and do the grocery shopping and cooking at home.
Alcohol: Never will you hear about me worrying over the three or thirteen glasses of wine I had over the weekend and how it was all sugar and I could never have burned that off in time. Never.
Sleep: Love it. Get it all the time. In fact, I want more of it in my life. Carry some around in my back pocket and name it George.
Water: Drink it all the time. Love it. Rarely touch softdrinks and have a bottle of water with me all the time. Yum.
That is a good place to start. I have to remember these coming months that I am starting ahead of the game.
So what are the next steps? Here's my thinking...
First, talk to my coach. And I have. And the conversation will continue.
Second, keep the good habits. Start ditching any bad ones.
Third, get some baseline information. Done. I have weight history from the last two months (informative re: what fluctuations to expect and (ahem) when), a fat composition test, and a metabolic rate test.
Pay attention. I started tracking my eating on Training Peaks, along with all the other training data I keep there. I'm hoping that patterns, habits, and weaknesses may reveal themselves there. It's also a good way of keeping aware of consumption on a daily basis. Accountability is good.
Get help. I'm ahead of the game on activity and healthy habits, but still overweight. Which, to me, says I should consult with someone who knows where to look for the answer. I'm working on finding some money (or insurance coverage) for consulting with a nutritionist -- one that the Elf recommends -- who knows endurance sports and endurance athletes. Because if one more person (ahem, my doctor!) says that I should try to work out a half an hour, three times a week...well, I may just kill them. Justifiable homicide, I believe.
Support. There are three irreplaceable people in my life, and two of them have joined me in this little quest. My sister and Mighty M. We're in it together. I suspect they will be invaluable.
So there you have it. The gauntlet. A little scary, no? But some of the most amazing changes I've ever experienced were absolutely terrifying at first. So I suspect this, too, will be transformative.
Thanks for coming along for the ride and being part of the process.