October 16, 2011

The Challenge Within

It's very hard to believe I am not the same woman I once was. Often you could hear me saying "back in the day...." which often was followed by "I could do this and that, with no problem". It is true, at one time I trained 6 days a week on average 2 hours a day in martial arts, mix that with Tae Bo and Sparring and I was one lean machine, ready for competition and loving how my body and mind felt in unison.

I have realized as I am writing this it has been 10 years, since I trained like that, amazing how so much has happened in that time span. A marriage, divorce, a major move to another Province, career changes, 3 significant motor vehicle accidents (that affected me greatly) and various friendships and long term relationships.  There are other life changing events that I've left out of this blog as I want to keep them out of the internet universe.

So often I have found myself saying "I'm not the same woman I once was." Well after seeing what I wrote above, is it any wonder? I've been longing for that woman who competed, trained, had a sense of self, and determination about her craft. But I've also come to realize that I am now starting that path from scratch this week, Monday to be precise! I am meeting with my very dear friend who happens to be a personal fitness trainer and we are going to start from scratch with a weigh in and measurements. I can already hear the negative thoughts churning in my head because I know the numbers are going to be in the digits I have NEVER been in, just as is my weight and my clothes.

I grew up in an unhealthy and unrealistic environment where how much you weighed, measured and ate was as much a part of you as getting up, showering and going on about your day. I spent many a teenage day measuring myself, compulsively exercising in my bedroom with a woman's exercise magazine that my mother had used. She used to measure and weigh her food, and consequently so did I. When I didn't get the results that I wanted, I turned to laxatives and weight loss supplements like Dexatrim because I have been so paranoid of gaining the weight that has plagued some of my relatives, not taking into consideration that for them it may not even be because of food, but no one told me about thyroids and diabetes as part of a reason for their situations.

The Challenge within is not just the numbers on the scale, or how snug and in some instances clothing that no longer fits has been playing with my mind. Those days of laxatives and diet supplements call to me, remind me of how they worked on purging my body of fat or muscles if there wasn't fat to take away. I hold back because I doubt now, I doubt what will truly work and what won't. Now it is about getting my body to WANT to eat, the metabolism is slow and the cravings for carbs is a lot smaller than it used to be, however, the 5 meals a day I used to have that were as a means of keeping my blood sugar even, hasn't been happening; I'm lucky if I have lunch after I have breakfast and then dinner at a reasonable hour.

But to be fair on myself I have to remember that having a complete hysterectomy not even a year ago, has really been a challenge for me. Not just the removal of a menstrual cycle and such, but the adapting to NOT ever having a period is the small part to the operation. The bigger picture is dealing without having all of my female reproductive parts, including the necessary hormones that keep things such as the weight I have gained in balance. I've been told that this weight will move and that my body will return to where it was, but what people have failed to share is how long it will be til that happens. I've been told various comments from a short time after my surgery to as long as when my body would normally and naturally go into menopause. So with that in mind, I can see why I am continually challenged with my thoughts and what to do.

Now to add to the mix is my years of chronic depression and Borderline Personality disorder, both of which are under medical supervision and I am feeling more in tune and balance with myself, in this regard. The work I am doing on myself and my mental state I have always known is a huge part of not just my mental state but my physical state as well. If one is not in balance, than how can the other parts?

I know it is about baby steps and learning to love who is inside me, but the outside part wouldn't mind a few perks too :)

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