Tuesday, September 25, 2012

New Day, New Life, Revisited

It has been a little over 7 years since I decided to change my life forever and a little over 6 years since I lost 75 pounds. Looking back, it seemed as if it was a breeze to lose the weight and stay on top of the intense work-outs I gave to myself. I didn't have a personal trainer, however I watched the best ones at my local gym to evaluate them to see what makes them the "best" and researched a variety of training sites on the internet and did it myself. I transformed myself from a frumpy, premenopausal 47 year old in the body of a 54 year old who wore men's baggy clothes to cover up to a Vibrant 48 year old in the body of a ahh,, let's say 35 year old who's wardrobe consisted of high end workout clothes :) I was driven by my goals and supported by my family and friends. I inspired myself to become a Personal Trainer. I studied in our sweltering home office for most of a year and became Certified with The International Sports Sciences Association. I promoted myself and I worked in-home with my clients and even made the September 2008 Success Story for Prevention Magazine. I also made the Personal section in Muscle & Fitness Hers Magazine the same year. I turned 50 and it was fabulous!!!!! I felt better than I had felt all my life. I felt attractive again to my dear husband who loves me through thick and thin, literally!
When I began my journey, I was scared. I was scared to lose weight. I was scared my life would change. I was obese. It was easy being fat. Then I got to the point where I horrified myself by looking into the full length mirror, naked. I always told myself, every time I got to that point of self disgust, that I would diet and exercise and I did and I usually would lose between 20 and 40 pounds and then gain it back every Holiday Season. Back then, Holiday Season began at Halloween and ended after Easter.That is three quarters of a year of Chocolate Season!
Absolutely the hardest part of the weight loss success is maintaining it. How do I stay motivated? Well, I have had some set backs. I think all of us have set back now and again.  It's all part of being human. In May of  2010, I came down with diverticulitis and ended up in the hospital for 2 days. It took the Dr 6 hours to figure out what was wrong with me. At first she thought I had an ectopic pregnancy. The internal ultrasound was brutal at best and the concoction they gave me to drink (contrast) before the cat scan made me sicker than the disease. That was the sickest I had ever been and I was scared that I was dying. Nothing changes your life like lying in a dark hospital room for 2 nights. I though about my family and I thought about all of the friends I had made through my weight loss. I though I might never see them again and I fell into a deep depression. The hospital fed me red jello (idiots) and salty broth and overloaded my IV with vitamins and didn't come I to check me or clean up. What a horrible time of my life. Physically I have never been the same. I feel scar tissue in my lower GI. Since I had a pin hole in my intestine, that's what I figure that aching is. I was given 2, very powerful antibiotics for 10 days and that was also worse than the disease. And I cannot forget to mention the white diet I had to eat since when healing. White Bread, White Rice, yogurt, meat...all stuff I do not usually eat. The meal they sent to me before my release was a Steak Sandwich and apple pie.. For crying out loud all I wanted was tea and toast and maybe a banana! If you do not know about diverticulitis, it is small pockets in your intestine that can collect foods like nuts and seeds and then become infected. It is an "old persons" disease, usually. At the age of 50 everyone should get a colonoscopy. It's a test where they put you out (thank God) and stick a hose up your rear end to see your intestines and removes polyps sometimes. When I had mine done...yet another horrible experience with the same health care provider, I had to find out the results myself and they told me I had diverticulosis and that most people had this and there is nothing you can do about it. I beg to differ. Stay away from Seeds and nuts and do not let yourself get dehydrated or too stressed out. It re-occurred with me a week after my dog died. I was so sad with grief that I forgot about myself and got very dehydrated and it struck me again.
Through this set back, I gained my strength and continued with my fitness, but not at the same pace. I lost my clients at this time too which was not so great, but that is the life of a trainer. I am still my best motivator and when I put my headphones on and have no time restraints, I get lost in my cardio and weight training. I did do a 9 month stint working at the cafe at my gym, which in retrospect was a mistake, but at least I made some tips!
So now, here it is in July and our daughter posts a photo of an adoptable (adorable) puppy. At first I strongly said No! I then slept on it and looked again at his pictures. He was so cute that we took him in. He was found on the streets of downtown LA and my heart broke. Getting him acclimated with our other dog was (is) tough and they still "play" with their teeth showing and it's been such a handful having to watch 24-7...but I wouldn't give it up for a thing, not even fitness! I have managed to work out at home in my tiny little office in a tiny little space with the music on loud and the doggies sleeping on the bed. I have fallen off a little, but every time I get a chance to go to the gym I do and I am greeted by so many of my beautiful friends who make me feel like a million. There is no better feeling than that and that's what keeps me motivated!
I do believe that I have changed my diet forever. I eat 6 small, well balance meals a day coupled with at least 8 glasses of water. I eat chocolate every day and I confess sometimes too much, but then I pull in the reigns on myself. It is a mental thing that no one else can give you. Once it is grasped, don't ever let it go! Life is so much better with self esteem instead of self conscious and it all comes from within, not from some multilevel marketing product or video or surgery. Optimal Fitness is Achieved Through the Infinite Power of your Mind and maybe a few books out there! :)