Welcome to Mellie's mind...

Where thoughts can be funny, can race at all hours of the day and night and can sometimes not make any sense!

Enjoy the ride!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The power of the mind............

When I was younger I played softball, it was my passion as a kid.  I tried other sports such as basketball and soccer but softball was where my passion was and I was the most successful at. 

I was a pretty good softball player between the ages of 9-13.  My position was short stop and rover, I would jump from either side of the pitcher's mound depending on where the batter usually hit. (determined if we played them previously in the year) I wasn't afraid of that big ball coming at me. I would get down in front of the ball, drop to my knees if it was a grounder and give it my all to stop the runner.  My brother use to take me out to the backyard and hit grounders and pop up balls over and over again at me so that I could run at it in full force with no fears.  Our neighborhood in the summertime use to play softball nightly in the back field of our house till it was so dark none of us could see anymore.  Man, I love that game!

The one downfall to it all was batting.  Batting was another issue all in itself with me.  I had a strong swing at a very young age, my coaches knew and I knew it.  But I lacked one thing, confidence.  I would get up to the batters box and fear would over come me.  By time I reached my side of the batters box my hands would be sweating and I would have the shakes.  It overcame me each and every time.  80% of the time I either walked, by the grace of a terrible pitcher, or I would strike out.  When I struck out I felt as if I had let my whole team down and was a failure.  I would go sit back on the bench and feel horrible about my lack of performance because I knew I was a strong batter and could do better.

In practice my coaches, or our own pitcher, would pitch to me and majority of the time I would hit the ball.  Not only did I hit the ball I would hit it out into left field over the heads of my team mates, it was incredible to watch.  Swing after swing I would hit that ball with all my might and watch it fly out there.  Each time I hit the ball, my confidence would rise higher and higher and I would tell myself that THIS week was going to be different, I was going to get up to that plate in a game in do what I knew I could do... hit the DAMN ball!

Each week, however, I would get the same butterflies as I would see my name on the batting order sheet and as my time approached self doubt would enter my mind again and once again I would go up there and usually strike out. 

I never understood at that point in my life how powerful the mind is and when we let self doubt enter our minds it is a destruction like no other.  Even now, at 37 years old self doubt creeps into my mind and takes over and destroys what I work so hard for. 

Sometimes I will be at the gym working out and my husband will rack a weight amount for me to do and I look at and the first thing out of my mouth is "I can't do that!"  Why is is that we doubt ourselves before we even try?  Why is it that we allow failures in the past to control our future successes?  I know in my mind I could have played softball all through Junior High and High School, I had a talent but I allowed self doubt to take over and stop me dead in my tracks.

I refuse to allow that anymore!  I keep saying I am going to get my body to a certain fitness level and I keep saying I am going to get certified to be a trainer and I keep saying I am going to do my own business.  I keep saying these things as self doubt creeps into my head each time, at all times and today I am saying this to my self doubt:

"You will not control me any longer!" 

I WILL be at my fitness goal!
I WILL be a trainer and a life coach!
I WILL have my own business!
I WILL no longer let self doubt control me!

If I can fight this self doubt that I have had in my life for 30 some years, you can too!  Do today what you have doubted you could do, we all have it in us we just need to say to ourselves one day... "enough is enough!"

"There's always the motivation of wanting to win. Everybody has that. But a champion needs, in his attitude, a motivation above and beyond winning."
-Pat Riley

Monday, February 14, 2011

24 hour withdrawl.... I am going to make it, I am going to make it, I am going to make it......

"Hello, my name is Michelle and I am a bodybugg addict."  (Crowd says, "hello Michelle") 

It has been 24 hours since I have officially taken off my bodybugg and removed it from my house.  I get up every morning between 5:05am and 5:15am to the sound of my phone trying to vibrate off my end table.  Today my phone went off and not 5 seconds later I had a text message from Carmen saying the bugg did not download and is showing she burned no calories.  Within 15 seconds came another text, and then another, and then another.  By time I stumbled to my bathroom I had 5 text messages from an a panic stricken calorie tracking girl and thought to myself, "I have just transferred my OCD bodybugg habit to one of my Best friends and now she has it!"  :)

As I made my way downstairs to start my normal routine of my day it occurred to me, my routine was broken.  Normally I would get my tea, yes GREEN TEA, and then I would go and download my bugg, post my results on facebook, plan my meals for the day and then play around on facebook as I completed my waking up process (which really meant I was waiting for Teresa to post her bugg updates so I could compare to hers)  With that gone today, I was lost.  I had nothing to download, no meals to calculate and no waiting to compare to Teresa's stats.  I had nothing to do! 

(Luckily there was a HUGE bag from the Coach store to distract me, but only for a few minutes since I could not open the package until my husband woke up.. but that is another blog)

That is pretty much how the rest of my day went.  I felt at a loss, like something was missing.  No downloads to check, no steps to check, just me myself and I.  I found myself at one point in the kitchen and I was feeling like I needed to snack and it crossed my mind, "If I eat that I am going to have to account for it" and then I remembered that I didn't have to account for it... or anything!  Slowly, I started to feel this weight lift from my shoulders as the day progressed and I thought less and less about it and as I sit here tonight typing this I have to say.... it feels pretty damn good to be free of something that watches me like a hawk!

I did the work.  I gave it my all, I achieved several goals and I am walking away... far away.  I am thankful for my time with the bugg and it will be a stepping stone I will use for future clients to come but for me, I am done with it and I feel GREAT!

The question that now lingers is... what do I do with my mornings as I am waking up?  ;) 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

I'm NAKED!!!!!!!!

Do I have your attention now?  (smile)

Today is Sunday, I only have 14 more days of THIS month to see some real changes in my body with my new goal of gaining more muscle.Today I was dealing with sick kids and I wanted to take the day off but I got my behind into the gym with my husband and got it done.

Today Joe really pushed me and I am proud to say I am proud of MYSELF.  Not only did I go outside of my comfort level by increasing my total weight that I use per sets, but I got off the assisted chin up machine and used a bar.

Did you read that part.... A BAR!!!!!!  

Oh my gosh, that was sooooo hard.  However, with a little spotting from Joe I was able to do 25 chin ups in 4 sets and it felt good!  Not good as in I liked the pain and sweat dripping from every part of my body, including my hands, but good as in I accomplished chin ups on a bar and overcame ANOTHER fear of mine.

Yaaa Me!

That was triumph number 1. Triumph number 2 was that while I was standing in the gym waiting for my next set of chin ups it occurred to me that I was afraid of change and I was focusing my attention on something I did not need to focus on anymore..... my Bodybugg.

Oh  sure, 13 days ago I announced I would not post my results anymore on facebook and how I wasn't going to worry about how many steps I took, what my deficit was or anything like that.  But low and behold three days later I was back to posting again.  I was back to displaying my burn, my deficits and still trying to keep up on high number of steps taken.  I had failed myself at letting go of that part of my weight loss journey in hopes to focus on being lean with more muscles.  But today, as I saw myself in the full wall of mirrors with my bugg on my arm I told myself enough was enough!  I did not need to depend on this instrument anymore, I did not need to worry about posting my calories in vs calories out to the world and I sure in the heck did not need to measure my happiness on how many freaking steps I had taken the prior day.  It was time to take the bugg off and I knew the only way to totally be free of it, was to GET IT OUT OF MY HOUSE!!!!

I called up my friend Carmen, who I am nudging down a new road to a healthier life, and told her she was going to wear it for the next two weeks so we could see exactly what she was burning. (See, doesn't that sound like nudging???)  Don't get me wrong, I love my bugg and I have learned so much from it and really give it about 30% credit for my weight loss and lifestyle change.  However, being addicted to the burn, steps taken, and deficit for the rest of my life is NOT what I want for myself.  It had to go, so I could embark on this next journey with a clear mind, a positive attitude and not feel like I have to hit certain targets to be successful.  Those days are gone for me, the thoughts are still there, but living like that has to be over.  There is more to life then counting calories, getting over the top deficits and taking 30 thousand steps a day.  There is a place for all of that, and I am grateful, but once you hit your goal.. and then your next.. and then your next... when do you say enough is enough?

Today is when I say that.

So, Carmen came over two hours later. I set her up with my bugg so she can start to learn and have the benefit of this wonderful device.  I can than celebrate HER journey and her accomplishments and know that I have done a great job and an even better one... going bugg free.

Friday, February 4, 2011

"Does not compute!" "Does not compute!"

Life as I know it is about to change..... 

When changes come into my life I tend to run at them FULL speed.  Once I have my head wrapped around the change that needs to occur there is no stopping me, I will give it my all.  This can be viewed from the outside as an obsession, but I call it passion and determination.

When I announced on 1/31/11 that I was going to change up my workout routine so I could start focusing on becoming more toned I had no idea what was fully in store for me.  My workouts were going to be cardio and weights, just heavier weights and less reps-no problem this is pretty much what I was already doing just needed to be more intense about it.  WRONG!

This past week has been tough for me, not because of the routine but because I was looking at my new goal with the wrong rose colored glasses on!  EVERYTHING that I have learned, enforced, tweaked and have been preaching about for the past year is over.  I am making not only a physical shift I HAVE to make the mental shift as well.
"I am no longer trying to lose weight."  
Let me say it again.... "I am no longer trying to lose weight."  
No, I still don't understand those words.  "I am no longer trying to lose weight."

For the past year I have counted, calculated and tracked everything that went into my mouth.  How much calories, how much fat, protein, carbs, fiber the list goes on.  If one week of eating a certain way didn't work I tweaked my plan.  If my body got too use to the caloric intake I switched it up the next month.  It was and is a full time job.  Every day I start my day off with downloading my bodybugg.  How many calories did I burn, how many steps did I take, how effective was my workout the day before.  All these things became apart of my life and the way I lived and the way I got healthy and lost weight.  My goal weight was 135 and then it went to 130 and that is where I stand today.

The calories are STILL important for my new goal of gaining muscle but they are viewed differently.  The goal as a weight loss person is to have a large deficit everyday.  Calories in vs calories out to get that 500+ deficit everyday.  That is no longer the goal for me.  Sure, I will still monitor what I eat and when I eat it but gone are the days of having to achieve a huge burn.  This has really been the hard part for me to get on board with, especially the past two days of this week.

I shared my frustrations with Joe and asked him to listen to what I was saying and help me understand the new path I was starting down.  When I was done telling him the way I felt when I was at the gym and how I was frustrated I was no longer running 3-6 miles a day, this is the email he sent me:
Michelle, athletes do not look the way they do because they ran 3-6 miles a day 6 days a week. Athletes got that way because they bulked and then they cut, that is what YOU have to do. Cardio is for two reasons- cardiovascular health, and weight loss. You have achieved your weight loss goal. If you have not, you should spend the next week doing your cardio and get to your goal BEFORE worrying about muscle but I think you are good at your current weight.
BUT IF YOU DON’T FEEL THAT WAY, stop lifting and finish your goal. Otherwise, you will keep confusing in your mind what your primary goal is, and you will reach neither (or it will take three times as long).
So now what? Now, you want to tone and define. Tone and define is a fancy way of saying you want to target certain areas of your body and build muscle and lose any last scraps of fat so you can walk around lean and trim.
TREADMILL will NOT do this for you. You can not shape your body on a treadmill or doing aerobic exercise. Body shaping is with IRON.
“Aerobic training such as walking, riding a stationary bike, or running is a good way to accelerate the fat burning process, as long as it is not overdone and as long as it is used only in addition to a good weight training program. It should never be used as a substitute for weight training since it does not permanently increase your metabolism and since it does not has the ability to re-shape your body.”
IN FACT, too much aerobic exercise will deplete muscle.
"unless you are a competitive bodybuilder with a perfect diet and a superb supplementation program designed to protect muscle mass, aerobic exercise should not be performed for more than 6 sessions a week of 20-45 minutes a day for males and 30-45 minutes for females since this would put you at a risk of losing muscle mass."
Weight Training
Various forms of it. Low reps, high reps, medium reps. What do you do? What your body is not used too. You are trying to overload and shock the muscle. 100 reps of a 20lb barbell will shock the muscle. So will 6 reps of 55lb barbell. Until you keep doing  one or the other, and then you switch it up.

You need to be lifting weights 4 times a week, and then EITHER doing cardio after weight training and resting 100% on off days, OR cardio only on non-weight training days, OR BOTH (cardio up to 6 days a week, either in am or after weight training, no longer than 30-45 minutes a day)
Remember, weight training is for weigh training. You should be resting in between sets so that you can tax your muscles to the fullest on your next set. If you do back squats and spend 60 seconds doing something else, you are back to trying to burn calories in your mind when really, your muscles need to rest so they can recover and be taxed to their fullest on the next set. 

This was a lot for me to take in.  Later last night he continued to share with me the changes I needed to make with my food intake, I could feel my head spinning and knew my eyes were glazing over.  He was talking about how I needed to eat starchy carbs in the morning, increase my protein consumption all to feed the muscles I was trying to build.  All of which I know is true and I will have to do, but for now I want to work on baby steps.

"Baby step onto the elevator... baby step into the elevator... I'm *in* the elevator." -Bob Wiley

"I am no longer trying to lose weight."  

I CAN end my day with a caloric deficit under 500 and still be a winner!
I WILL still be healthy!
I WILL continue to be thin!
I am NOT on the road to gaining weight again!  
I HAVE achieved my goals I started out with!

"I am no longer trying to lose weight."  

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Anyone get the plates off that truck that hit me????

Tuesday February 1, 2011

I am aware that I am still in bed sleeping but awake enough to know where I am, I have no idea what time it is.  The house is totally dark, I can hear the heater blowing the warm air into our room and my husband is asleep next to me.  Suddenly I am startled fully awake by the sound of my IPhone alarm going off.  "Ugh, it's 5:15am already" I say in my head.  As I reach over to grab my phone so it doesn't wake up my husband I feel this sharp, yet dull pain in my arm.  My muscles are tight and resist stretching as if to tell me they do not want to be moved. The memories of the following day flood back into my mind washing over me.  Yesterday was the first day of my new workout and I feel like I have been hit by a truck!  I gingerly roll out of my bed in the darkness while every muscle is screaming at me to stay put.  Stay under the warm heated blanket, stay in the darkness of the morning.... but I have to get moving. 

Monday was the start of my total body workout.  I am on a set schedule for cardio and weights to achieve the most I can in the next 28 days, not for weight loss but to acquire muscle gain. Today was a new day!!! I battled with my mind yesterday realizing I was allowing my mind to control the amount of weight I lifted rather then pushing my body to tell me what it can and can not do. I was determined not to let that mistake happen again even though it was only a cardio day for me.

As I made my way into the gym at 6:45am the first thought that came to mind was how surprised I was to see all the people there.  At first I was irritated because in my mind I was going to have the place to myself, but in a split second that irritation changed to motivation because I knew I wasn't alone in this.  All these people here had similar goals in their minds too... to get healthy!  I was ready to go!

I did my warm up, I did my stretches and all was going well.  It was time to get on a bike and get my burn on!  Now, coming from a place where I have been running almost daily and knowing what I burn per minute, per mile and what works best for me for incline and speed I was excited to learn what my potential on this bike was going to be.  So I started to peddle... and peddle... and peddle.  3 minutes into the "ride" I looked at my calories and I was shocked at how little I had burned.  My mind jumped into overtime "Crazy Mellie" speed.  I began counting how long I would have to be on the bike, what speed I would need to stay at to get to where I wanted to be for a burn.  My mind raced with details, distractions and doubt.  Here I was again, of course I did not realize this at the time, letting my mind dictate what I should and should not be doing.  Needless to say, I stayed on the bike for a total of 15 minutes and then I moved on to my familiar love, the treadmill.  Did I just that I loved my treadmill, the one thing that taunts me everyday of my life?  The machine I have nicknamed the "Dreadmill?"  Yes, it is true I love my treadmill.

I ended up doing the treadmill and the stair stepper to achieve the goal I had set for myself.  But, because I struggle with my own demons, that was not good enough so I did 15 minutes of light circuit weights too.  When I left the gym I was tired, but invigorated.  I had done what I set out to do and could check day number two off in my head. 

I am excited to see what day 3 brings me and what challenges I will face then.  It is becoming apparent to me more and more as I explore this new way of life that the biggest challenge for me, and for most of my friends I talk to, is not the workouts.  It's not the eating.  It's not even the time factor, we can all MAKE the time if we really want to.  The biggest challenge is OURSELVES.

Most women have such a strong love for their families, their spouses, friends and animals.  But what kind of love and determination do we show for ourselves?  Do we put as much effort into our own lives and happiness as we do for those around us?  We go out of our ways to nurture those in need, but refrain from giving ourselves the same kind of nurturing.  I am determined to not allow that for myself anymore, and I challenge anyone reading this to do the same!

Determination and decisions that we make when we are in the darker times of our lives control our minds and our bodies.  We have to make the decision to be determined to take care of ourselves.  We all have the same opportunity to have a good healthy life.  A healthy life that will lead to more happiness, better relationships and more love for ourselves.  Some people have determination and some do not. 

WE NEED MORE DETERMINATION.  We need to make better decisions. 

"The only credit we get in life is for the decisions we make."  -unknown

Start today, make the right decisions to change your life, because we all deserve joy and peace.