Learning to Walk Again
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
So, yesterday I worked on getting up. I ate my regular 1/2 whole wheat bagel with 1 Tbsp. of whipped cream cheese and, with coffee in hand, I headed to work. I ate my yogurt at the regular time, had my salad a few hours later with a turkey sandwich, and then the cravings hit.
Instead of rushing to the vending machine, I ate some almonds and had a protein bar...following that with some grapes instead of chocolate covered pretzels. When I felt more cravings, I popped a slice of Extra's new dessert gum. (If you haven't tried this, you totally should! Mint Chocolate Chip and Strawberry Shortcake are amazing! I feel like I'm eating the full-meal gum from Willy Wonka! *lol* Why didn't anyone think of this before?!)
I spent the hours of 3-6 trying to talk myself out of going to the gym. I had good reasons and some excuses.
I was still tired because I didn't sleep well the night before.
My legs were still sore from the actual fall I took the other night.
I still wasn't "feeling it."
My oldest son has come down with Chickenpox.
And then I told myself that I was being silly.
I told myself that my Zumba instructor was doing final measurements for the BL challenge we started in October.
I told myself that regular gym-time on Thursday was out because I have to work my second job.
And then I told myself to shut it and just drive.
I got out of my car at the gym complaining about the cold.
And then told myself that it would be warmer inside.
I whined about how cold I would be when I was sweat-drenched on the way home.
And then I told myself I'd cross that bridge when I got there, and it was only a 10-15 minute drive before I'd be home in the cozy, warm house.
And I changed my clothes and took one last look in the mirror before heading upstairs.
And I ran a lap around the track, just to remind myself what that felt like.
I positioned my new I RUN Bondiband on my head, a reward I bought myself for completing week 2 of C25k.
Zumba was strange, and I was reminded again how much my body has changed.
I nearly fell over no less than 4 times.
The instructor asked if I was okay, as my balance seemed to be in the crapper.
And these really weird words came out my mouth as I explained that I was using the same energy I had used before to complete the moves before realizing it didn't take that much energy anymore.
You've all heard the phrase "lighter on your feet" right? That's what I was. I was lighter. So when we did a leg lift or a jump or even a knee lift, my mind kept trying to work those muscles to their ultimate power to raise my legs off the ground. But, I soon realized, my legs weren't as heavy anymore. And at one point I even felt like I was flying in a way. I was jumping higher and moving faster, and it took me some time to get used to it.
I may not have lost any weight in DC, but even Hubs noticed when I got back that my legs look thinner. Walking and running have shrunk my legs, and certainly have increased my muscle mass in them, I think. And when I put on that size 2x dress MEZZO sent me, I realized I didn't hate my legs so much anymore. They aren't the runners legs I want...not yet... but they're certainly improved and I'm finding cause and opportunity to enjoy and love them.
I came home after Zumba and ate a little too much pot roast and mashed potatoes. But then I stopped eating and was good the rest of the night.
I felt stronger.
I felt a little more in control.
I wasn't perfect, but I was gaining my courage back.
I talked to a friend on the phone, the one who is getting married in July and asked me to be a bridesmaid. The one who gave me yet another reason to keep pushing, so I can be lower than I ever have been in my adult life by the time I put on that bridesmaid dress. I told her that I was hoping to lose at least another 30 pounds by the time her wedding came around. I reminded her that I had lost 80 already, and told her that my plan was to lose "a Sarah" (that's her name, btw). "Good luck!" she said. "I'm up to 126 now." I started calculating in my head and thought, "Okay, so the challenge is set. I may not lose a Sarah before her wedding, but by the end of next year, I want to be able to tell her -- 'Hey! I lost YOU!' and laugh uncontrollably."
After talking to her, I watched the BL finale...and somehow I got to talking with Logan and Hubs about how much weight I had lost. "You weighed 460 pounds at some point?" Hubs looked at me, jaw dropped. "Yep. 466.6." He didn't say anything. "I now weigh 335." And all I heard was, "Oh my God!" Suddenly the pictures of the people on the show made sense to him. I was right up there with them. I may still have a ways to go, but I have accomplished amazing things so far, so who can say I can't do it again, or continue to do it?
When I fessed up to you yesterday about how scared I was, I was on my way to getting up. I had my knee bent and my foot on the ground. And with each small step of progress I made throughout the day, I was getting my entire body into standing position. Through my Zumba class I started taking my first steps again. And then having some serious talks, I started to feel like my legs were back firmly under me and I was ready to move at a quicker pace.
I think I experienced a slight twinge of burnout last week.
I think the disappointment from putting in so much effort and not seeing results shook me.
But I know that I started the process of learning to walk again yesterday.
We say all the time that it's all about the baby steps we take...and what I didn't realize is how many times throughout the process you have to go back to crawling before you can learn to take baby steps and learn to walk again. You grasp onto any hand around you, for me, it was friends and family, my Hubs a lot of the time, my Sparkies the rest. I let you hold my hands to give me the confidence I needed to try again on my own. And then I let go and started to walk again.
That doesn't mean I won't need those hands again sometime in the future. I might even need them again today. Learning to walk is a difficult thing - you have to find your balance and listen to your body, and stumbling is a part of that learning process. But for right now, I'm walking, I'm taking it step by step and letting go of the idea that the fall hurt me somehow. In truth? I think it has made me stronger.
Thanks for helping me get up.
Thanks for holding my hand as I took those first steps.
I'm ready to take some more on my own again, but I hope you'll all be there when I need the hand-holding once more.
And as I try out these new legs, I'm going to work on reminding others that they can walk too, and that we can support each other as we go. The walk is always more fun when you have someone to share it with...another lesson I learned in DC.
In other news:
* My eye doc yelled at me today for misusing my contacts. I was days away from getting an ulcer in my eye and, perhaps, losing a good portion of my vision. Another lesson learned. I'll be ordering new glasses and contacts on Friday and, until then, me and my old glasses will be spending a lot of quality time together.
* Like I said, Logan has Chickenpox. Ethan is P.O.ed beyond belief because it means he gets to miss school all week, and likely the two days next week before Winter Break. Logan is doing well, it's a mild outbreak as he had one shot of the vaccination as a baby. His fever is 99 or so, and the bumps aren't everywhere. He feels fine and loves that he gets to stay home from school! *lol*
* Workout scheduled for today? C25k, W3D3. Yep, I'm a little behind because of the traveling and such, but I'm just going to keep going like I didn't miss a beat and only go backward if I need to. One thing I won't do? Give up. I worked too hard to be able to run (something I discussed with a classmate at Zumba last night), I won't go back on it now.