Wednesday, April 24, 2013

2013/2003: Week 14

In my quest to re-lose the weight I took off in 2003-2005, I've decided to document each week, comparing life now (first post) with life 10 years ago (second post). My hope is that I can find the momentum that carried me through those two years by looking at what worked for me then.

WEEK 14: 2013 
Beginning Weight: 264.6
Last week's weight: 246.4
This week's weight: 245.2
Week 14's weight loss: -1.2
Total weight loss: -19.4

This week. It sure has had its ups and downs. Friday's third 5K was touch-and-go because of the weather. Heavy storms, lightning and tornadoes were in the forecast. But I still hopped on Metro and hoped for the best. It was super humid. But I found myself running more than walking and feeling really good. I was on track to beat even last week's time, which had been so much better than the previous week. But with the lightning hitting a little too close to home, the course was shut down and I was only able to complete 2.64. Still, my pace was the best in more than a year (13:56) and I felt really great.

I spent Saturday worried about Sunday. Seriously. 

I awoke Sunday at 4 a.m. and drove to Alexandria, so nervous about every little thing. I was the first one in the parking garage (perhaps I was a little too anxious?) and the first on the bus that would take us to the starting in at Mount Vernon. It was still dark when I exited the bus and tried to get my bearings. I ended up sitting on a porch, looking at my watch every few minutes. 45 minutes till I can eat my banana. An hour and a half till we have to line up. An hour and 45 minutes till the race begins. 

Then a very kind woman who was sitting on the other side of the porch came over to my bench and asked if I was cold. (I sure was .... short-sleeves and a windy 45 degrees don't mix well when you're just sitting around.) She gave me a mylar race blanket she had stashed in her gear bag and we sat and talked and talked about races and running. She put my mind at ease simply by telling me this was one of her favorite races because it's so peaceful out on the parkway. At that point, I told myself that that was all I needed -- a chance to be out there and at peace and to enjoy my surroundings.

They started the slow runners 30 minutes early on the Mount Vernon path (we were to join the others when we converged). I took off very slow and steady but feeling good. The slow runners passed me by, but I told myself that pace was what mattered most today. I had to keep it up for 10 miles. 

Mile 1. Mile 2. Mile 3. I couldn't believe how good I felt. I was maintaining my 2/3 run/walk, and there were moments during the running where I felt light and free and so good. Though I noticed the runners next to me on the parkway, I stayed on the path until I felt more comfortable about the pace they were keeping (no use joining a group of runners who would plow me down as soon as I stepped foot on the course). But by Mile 4, I had to join or else miss another water stop. I was indeed plowed down but I didn't let it get to me. I kept up my pace. Slow and steady.

It was shocking, as the miles ticked off, how good I felt. My training had not been going well. I hadn't been running at all during my long distances and it had been a month since I had done a very painful 9 miles. But on this day, I felt amazing.

I crossed the finish line running -- and beaming, having kept up the run/walk the entire time. I felt wonderful. I didn't ache, I didn't feel sick. 

I smiled all the way home, smiled as I stretched, smiled as I got ready for work, smiled at work despite the complete exhaustion, smiled as I laid my weary head to rest.

The smile didn't last all that long after that. The next day, feeling so good in general, I tried on a pair of pants that haven't fit since October or so. Yeah, they still didn't fit. I was still the same fat girl, the same one who, despite losing some weight, still can't fit into the clothes she wore just six months ago.

I thought about the race results I had peeked at the day before. I had been so excited about my pace (with the extra mileage from the path, I had actually done 10.3 miles, maintaining a 16 minute/mile pace), but of course, the race only had me at 10 miles, and a 16:30 pace. And I was sixth from last. 

On Monday, I stepped on the scale -- proud of the fact that I ate well over the weekend and didn't gorge after the race. The weight was, of course, up.

Then I made the mistake of looking at the race pictures that were finally posted from the first Friday 5K. I'll own up to my horrible appearance by posting them:

So in a matter of hours, I went from feeling wonderful about myself, to feeling rotten. 

It is true that I have not been an angel with my eating. Once a week, I eat out during Trivia Night: a veggie and cheese sandwich with a side of fries. And I've been having frozen yogurt (fat-free but not a small portion) and plain popcorn once or twice a week. But that's about it. And to run, and run faster, and still see so little progress (especially in my appearance) is so frustrating.

But I feel like I should reiterate: I do not run to lose weight. I run because I love it. I try to lose weight SO I can run. There have been so many times recently when I've wanted to unzip from this horrible body, step out of it and just run like the wind. 

It's hard to put into words what I've learned from this week. I know I need to be happy with the progress I'm making, to live in the moment and appreciate the good (those races really did rock!). I was looking at old pictures last night and remembered how I complained in the first blog post (circa 2009) about how I looked bigger than an elephant in one of them. I was 50 pounds lighter than I am now. And looking at those pictures now, I think I looked pretty darn good. Then I think, will I look back at this time in my life one day and wish I looked this way? I hope not -- I hope I don't get bigger and remember this time fondly. But the point is, it's not all bad. And if I don't appreciate what I have right now, it, too, could be taken away.

Week 14: 2003
Beginning Weight: 317
Last week's weight: 282
This week's weight: 279.2
Week 14's weight loss: -2.8
Total weight loss: -37.8

Published: 05/13/2003
I’ve had a lot of “wake-up” moments this week.

I bought two skirts on Sunday right off the rack without trying them on, thinking they would definitely fit, perhaps even be too big.

Wake up, Diana.

Planning to wear the one outfit Monday, I stepped into the skirt and nearly suffocated from how tight it was. No where near ready to fit. What was I thinking?

And that new outfit I bought for Easter? I swear, when I looked in the mirror, I saw a slimmer Diana. But when Mom shared the newly developed photographs with me this weekend, I was devastated at how I looked. The same. The same as I’ve always looked.

Wake up, Diana.

I am proud at what I’ve accomplished these past few months. And I haven’t been fooling myself regarding how long this process was going to take. I suppose I just thought I had come further than I really had. A bit depressing. But don’t worry – I won’t let it stop me.

The gym is going well. They’re working me hard, thankfully, and really helping me get this part of my life under control. I actually look forward to each visit, something I never imagined would happen.

I’ve just got to be more realistic about my journey.

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