Tough Bloke: How I made it to the other side...

A lot of help, determination, Sunday sessions, healthy eating (sometimes - sorry Al) and my trainer, Casey. Oh, and I can't forget Scott for his patience and all the meals he made while I worked hard at the gym. If you had asked me what I'd be doing now, a year ago, I would've said, "you're nuts!" But, shedding 13 or so kilos, building up my self-esteem and having a strong support system got me to the finish line this past Sunday, albeit spent and mighty muddy :)

More often than not you're used to seeing me pretty glammed up on Bagful, but let's take a look at our journey, shall we?

We've arrived!

We've arrived!

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Starting a trend

Starting a trend

The calm before the storm

The calm before the storm

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Deliberating our start

Deliberating our start

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Yeah, we did this about halfway through the run too

Yeah, we did this about halfway through the run too

When we emerged from the woods

When we emerged from the woods

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Yeah, this is me struggling to get over some sort of semi-vertical wall in the background; Casey wouldn't let me go and all I kept thinking is, "man, I feel like such a jack@$$ right now!"

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All that was left to do was wade through muddy water (a sweet relief) and then traverse Hell's Gate.

We could do it, right?

Hell's Gate

Hell's Gate

Casey and Jules inching across

Casey and Jules inching across

I'm up!

I'm up!

It's over!

It's over!

We started and finished with  Flash Gordon and Wonder Woman

We started and finished with Flash Gordon and Wonder Woman

That about sums it up

That about sums it up

Would I do this again? It depends. While Tough Bloke was fun, we were, however, tired, bruised and muddy.

Perhaps, I'll just continue to work it out inside the gym and take pride in all that I've accomplished -- because, "we run, we jump, we swim and play; we row and go on trips…"

And the nails, they still look pretty darn good ;)

Week 3 of the 12 week challenge - update

Rome wasn't built in a day, yada yada.  Nor am I looking for any miracles or quick fixes. Three weeks ago I stood (and still do) at approximately 158 cm, weighed 77.8 kg and had a BMI of 39%.  To put it bluntly, I am a rotund girl who is very petite in height.  Anything that I put in my mouth will surely make its way to my hips and or thighs.  I certainly realise in order for me to stay in relatively decent shape, I pretty much need to exercise five times a week.

I've committed myself to a new exercise regimen since the 19th of March and have managed to lose 900 grams (1.98 pounds) and 2.5% body fat.  Overall, I am ecstatic over losing something each week. Sacrifices have been made, but I still make sure I fit in a sweet treat or two when the time is right. I'm not aiming to deprive myself, because I don't want to make this experience miserable for myself, my husband or for my trainers.

Here are some other happy moments for me...

  • I can now run a kilometre without stopping
  • I shaved about two minutes off my time from January to April.  In other words, I can now run a kilometre in a little over six minutes
  • My new pants are too big for me; time to go shopping, I guess

Like I said before, I am not looking for miracles.  I just want to be happier and healthier in my skin. Plus, I want to live to forever in order to spend the rest of my days with Scott.

I'll check in with you in a few weeks.  This weekend's been a wash thanks to Easter and Scott's birthday:)

12 Week Challenge

Over the course of exactly three months I will be striving to lose 10 kilos and or 22 pounds.  I've experienced a bit of a kickstart into the lead up of this challenge.  You see, I had a bit of a health scare in late July 2011 which included a visit to the ER.  Countless visits and tests later confirmed a clean bill of health, but I also learned I was overweight, very overweight.  Technically obese.  A trip to Italy was on the horizon and I had just nailed a new job; I was not ready to undertake a fitness regime.  Upon moving to Australia, I signed up and joined Fernwood Fitness where I was given a thorough tour and a free personal training session and that's where it ended. Between the months of February and October I was left with a bi-monthly reminder of my gym membership fees and the fact that I wasn't attending at all. Cut to October 2011, fresh off of a three-week trip of a lifetime to Italy, I forced myself to re-visit the gym I turned my back on for months. When I arrived I think the sales girl thought I was going to cancel my membership, but I surprised her with my request for a personal trainer.  I personally asked for Casey, the girl who originally showed me the ropes and wowed me with her words of encouragement just a few months before.  Physically, I was at a zero.  The weight came on fast and furious during the first year of marriage and you know what, I have no regrets.  The nights I spent with Scott out on the town dining and drinking are my favourite. We fumbled around Melbourne, nailed down the best dining spots for us and ate mouth-watering meals; we've also met and learned the names of some of our now most-loved waiters and waitresses.  It was bliss, the best 15 kilos I ever put on and I'm not ashamed to admit this. Although, what I am ashamed of is the denial I experieneced.  Generally, I'd like to think of myself as a very happy-go-lucky person and my happiness was blinding me to the fact that my body was changing in shape and size.  Round bits stuck out like a sore thumb, pants didn't zip up like they used to and my thighs, it was as if someone had sandpapered my skin (this is known as chub rub my friends).

Leggings and oversized cardigans were the things I wore on the weekend and yet I continued to squeeze myself into the clothes (for work) that were beginning to tear at the seams. Not cute. Fashion is integral to my life and I couldn't wear pretty things.  It was sacrilege for me to enter a plus size store, I couldn't cross the threshold mentally or physically.  The icing on the cake for me happened during a personal shopping trip in Florence; our guide brought us to some of the most exclusive stores and I could barerly get into a size 44 (European).  Talk about deflated. Subconsciously I think I knew how much I had changed; looking back at some of the photos I had taken around the world and here in Australia, I noticed a recurring theme.  I took tons of photos of my feet!  Wouldn't you rather see a smiling face as you recounted the moments of delight and whim?

I think you get the point.  I've travelled to some of the most beautiful places and all I managed to do was snap pictures of my well-manicured feet.  I'm not a big gal; I stand just under five feet and three inches, in metric 159 centimetres.  Five pounds is all it takes for a vertically-challenged person from going from fit to fat.  I am not a stranger to being chubby; I was always the big girl in class and then the weight fell off almost over night when I was 17-years-old.  Boys started to remember my name and I had a new social life. In college, the weight crept back on a little bit and then I was thrusted into life, a failed relationship, mediocre career prospects, student debt and everything else.  And then I rekindled things with Scott - we fell hard and eloped in Vegas when he was there initially to meet my parents. From the stress of my life changing so rapidly I lost a lot of weight, a bit of my hair and even some of my sanity. You can't question things, but plan when a move so major is set into motion.

Since October, with the help of Casey and my food coach Alex, I have lost about five kilos; it's nothing major, but it's a start.  The things that make me the happiest about my weight loss are my clothes fit, I can wear coloured skinny jeans, Australian fashion is now within my reach and I feel as fit as I did two years ago.  Alex told me something that struck a chord, "you won't lose weight until you're ready."  I know I'm ready and I have these two lovely ladies to help me get there.

Over the next 12 weeks I am going to document my weight loss progression and be as honest and forthcoming about the peaks and the valleys.  This won't be easy and is something I'm fully commited to doing.  Plus, there's a potential trip to Malta waiting at the end for Scott and I.  Keep up with me as I rant, rave and whinge.

Oh, and I had the best pancake breakfast this morning as a my final meal before buckling down.

Starting Weight: TBC on Tuesday's weigh in

Height: 159 CM

BMI:  TBC on Tuesday's weigh in

*Full disclosure: I am in no way affiliated with or endorsed by Fernwood Fitness.  The opinions and thoughts expressed here are completely my own.  I am a proud paying member of Fernwood Fitness Melbourne.