Hope you're sitting comfortably as this is probably going to be a long post!
I love Sundays (the ones when I'm not in work) because the Mister always has Sundays off and recently we've cut back on a lot of our social commitments so frequently don't have much to do. This usually means a lazy morning in bed, a huge brunch and a day spent on the sofa watching movies and I sometimes will do a roast dinner for the two of us. Heaven!
Things are a little different now I'm on Lighterlife. We still had the lovely lazy Sunday morning in bed with no plans for the rest of the day. I did say I wanted to sort through the wedding and honeymoon photographs. Just to clarify, these are the wedding photographs from August 2013 and the honeymoon photographs from May 2014... which we've still not sorted out! With that in mind, the Mister negotiated some time to go out and play this game he's gotten into which involved running around Sheffield to various locations. (I won't bore you with the details).
Anyway... so there I am sat on the sofa all on my lonesome so decided to do my counselling homework from Thursday. At the session we spoke about time and how we generally spend it, especially in relation to how we eat. The idea behind this is that we get to think through how we have ended up where we are (about 8 stone too heavy for me) and what we can do to stop this from happening again once we have lost the weight and are eating real food again. I think engaging with the counselling is really important otherwise what is the point? I'm damn sure I'm not eating my way back up to this size again.
I completed the exercises which were about identifying examples of times I have overeaten- who was around, what was I doing, how did I feel, why it happened. Now, this was difficult as I have to admit I overeat every single time I eat. My portion sizes are huge and I frequently feel uncomfortable after eating, and sometimes a bit ill. But as they wanted specific examples, I did have a think. Basically I figured out that mostly I'm likely to eat loads when I'm bored or stressed, and when I'm stressed and not at work, I tend to have nothing to do. So boredom is clearly a factor. The next exercise was all about the different ways people spend their time and it highlighted a big issue for me. I spend an awful lot of time not doing very much.
If I have a day off from work then I'm likely to sit on the sofa watching TV, reading the internet, writing, playing games etc. Not very helpful for maintaining an active healthy lifestyle. While I think these kinds of days are really important to de-stress and unwind, I have them far more than I need to and the boredom I'm feeling is clearly an indication that I don't need that much of it. I'm pass-timing, just filling my time until something interesting happens. Here's where the food comes in. I'm using food as an activity. When my brain is wanting to do something interesting, I eat food. That occupies me for a little while, and is pleasurable, but then it starts again. The past few days have shown me that hunger pangs are a very particular feeling whereas normally, I very rarely experience those because I'm eating before I'm actually hungry.
All of this reminds me of the lyrics "what are you hungry for?" from the Alanis Morissette song "Not the Doctor". Hopefully her very expressive way of singing this will pop into my head when I'm wanting something and think food is the answer. I really do make food an activity far more than the more "normal" people around me.
This led me to thinking about how I spend my time and how I would like to spend my time in the future. There's a whole list of hobbies I'd like to be more involved with. My greatest wish is to go horse riding. I loved it as a child but I'm far too heavy to do it now and have been since being an adult. I'd need to drop about 5 stone to be able to even think about it. But there are plenty of other things that I can do at this weight as I'm pretty healthy even if I am big.
Obviously, sat doing this exercise on the sofa in my pyjamas made me feel a little uncomfortable. Then something amazing happened! I actually got off my fat behind and did some housework and went to the gym! The exercises really made the issue black and white. I had absolutely nothing to do, was on my own and was bored. Classic situation where I'd normally eat. Now, I've been waiting for the famous "ketosis high" before going to the gym but I think that happened on day 2 and I just stopped using the energy which is exactly what I do every day. I have noticed I've been fidgeting more recently too so I think I do have the energy, I'm just a gym-avoider due to the instant gratification available in food instead of the delayed gratification of the gym, which is infinitely better.
So, I went to the gym and am now feeling very smug. Actually, it's more than smug, I feel really good and really positive. I did 5km on the treadmill with the occasional jog making my time at 57 minutes. I'll continue to track that because although I don't really need the cardio workout, I would like to improve my fitness and be able to jog the 10km. I had a swim and spent some time in the spa pool and sauna. I'm a member of Virgin gym, the Sheffield Broadfield one, and it's a pretty impressive gym. There's a rock climbing wall which I love (even though I only get about seven feet off the ground as I'm so unfit), exercise classes (I can only manage the yoga and pilates), and they have just refurbished and included some impressive looking boxing equipment. With all the different activities available, you can really mix up a workout.
I'm feeling so determined to avoid the sofa I even contacted a personal trainer and we are meeting on Friday to look at whether he can help me. Something about losing so much weight quickly is that it can affect your skin. I'm 30 so I'm hopefully (fingers and toes crossed) young enough that most of it should shrink back within time. The Mister gives lots of massages which improves circulation so that also helps, and there are creams available, though I'm not sure how effective they are. I'm really worried about loose skin. At the moment, even at 17 stone, I wore a bikini on holiday and have posed for naughty photographs for my husband. I have a lot of body confidence for a bigger girl, and I really don't want to lose that. I know that toning as you lose weight can help you look better once you are slimmer, and I really don't know anything about toning so a personal trainer could really help me here. I've chosen someone who knows a lot about resistance training and does kickboxing type sports because it would be fun to do that too.
A personal trainer is quite a big financial commitment especially alongside the Lighterlife diet and the gym membership, and the Mister and I had a chat about it. Basically, I don't care. If I'm doing this, and I am, I'm doing it properly. I'm committing. (Go me!) With that in mind, I've created a music playlist featuring such greats as "Eye of the Tiger" and "Pump up the Jam" to inspire me. So that's me. On board. Fully committing after having my eureka moment and feeling really good about it.