Sunday, December 28, 2008

Seeds from 2008

I'm sure Im not alone in writing about the closing days of 2008.  It seems we have all reaped the blessing of living in "interesting times" this year.  When I was a child, the days from Christmas to Christmas stretched on forever, but now the Earth appears to be spinning faster, so I'd better put down a few things I'm grateful for before I start my shopping for next year.  Oh!  speaking of shopping, I will be doing less.  I apologize to the U.S. economy if this does it more harm, but I know that paying down my credit card balances can only help long term.  So, If I no longer have the lure of shiny new things to distract me from what I truly want, I suppose I'll have to face what I truly want.  Why does that sound ominous?  How many of us are a little bit afraid, maybe a lot afraid, of our dreams?
     Speaking of dreams, (Ah, there was a nice little spot of avoidance), I did have one come true this year.  I lost 20 pounds, totally ramped up my fitness, and won the second  Turbulence Training Transformation challenge.  Me, a 44 year old suburban mom.  Then I put together that little Jazz singing show I always wanted to do, and it went beautifully. That's where the gratitude starts,  with Craig Ballantine, TT, and everyone on the forums at  Of course the list goes on and on when I think of all the people who have offered their kindness to me this year.  Especially my family.   I'm grateful for more faith, more love, and a growing understanding that anger and judgement don't really do a lot for me.  And envy!  Well, one I did learn one thing about that.  It's a very clear signpost to what I really want.  So to anyone I envied this year, although I hope you don't know who you are, Thank You! 
      What was I so afraid of this year? I'll tell you.  Success.  Success equals responsibility, and that has always scared me.  So the wisdom I needed to learn for 2008 had to do with the fact that courage is the ability to act in spite of fear.  Hmmm, looking at the year ahead, it appears that we will all need courage.  I'm sure that if I have it, you do too.  

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Using Weight

Lately, the issue of what to call a fitness pursuit has come up a couple of times.  It seems that "losing weight" isn't part of a complete goal statement because when you lose something there is an implication that you actually want it back.  Alright then, instead of losing eleven pounds of fat by Dec. 2nd, I am now using 11 pounds of fat by December 2nd, 2008.  I like it.  It states my intention, using fat to fuel my "beauty building," and it rhymes with my old way of saying things.
     I must admit, the past week has had it's ups and downs in terms of motivation.  Sometimes I feel the wind in my sails, and I feel like this journey toward my true self is simply meant to be.  Other days, it feels like every good decision I make requires a supreme effort.  Thankfully, each positive effort has brought me to the easy place again.  Sometimes you have to pull your sled, but then you get to ride it.  Please, please please, can I ride the sled down past 130 pounds?  Of course I can.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

So what is it really?

I saw a quote in In Style magazine lately by the lovely Beyonce.   "True happiness and confidence"  are her only beauty secrets, she says.   In other words, beauty works from the inside out.  I can think of a number of people of average looks who I'm always delighted to see, and I can also think of a number of extremely physically attractive folks who just seem to suck all of the air out of a room.  So while we're on this journey toward beauty, we have to nurture our happiness in order to arrive at our destination.  How does this hook up with eating right and exercising smart?  I think it's important to find the fun eating right and working out.  How?  Well for starters, appreciate what your body can do right now.  Kneeling pushups all you can handle?  All right then, get down and do that kneeling pushup with beautiful form and full range of motion.  Egg white omelet with vegetables for breakfast?  OK them, make sure you have your absolute favorite veg on hand to throw in there.  Lately, I started thinly slicing a bit of eggplant and sauteing it in just a little bit of olive oil before adding my other veggies with the chicken broth I usually cook them in.  The eggplant adds a wonderful richness to the dish.  Believe me, I love rich foods  and it's so important to find ways to stay satisfied!
     Now here's a story I'd like to share about push ups.  Years ago, my mom was working with a Native American personal trainer.  I would join their sessions whenever I was in town, and he had the most interesting thing to say about why push ups work so well.  "Push ups make you lose weight," he said.  Well of course they do, but he was talking about more than just the calories they burn.  "Your body wants to do what you ask of it," he continued.  If you attempt push ups, and they are difficult for you, but you continue to strive for them,  your muscles won't just get stronger, all the sympathetic systems in your body will work together to lose weight so than you can do push ups.  In other words, the body will say to itself, "Oh, this physical action is important to Catherine, let's let go of some excess weight so that she can do them."  It may sound odd, but as far as your body is concerned, those push ups might be crucial for your very survival, so it will do what it can to see that you can do them.  I hope that after reading this, your push ups bring you even more satisfaction.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Can't wait

So the holiday weekend has passed without too much damage.  What is it about 2 glasses of wine that can bump the scale up 2 pounds the next day?  Is there some cosmic law that states that all things are fattening in direct proportion to how much you enjoy them?  Doesn't matter.  I'm deeply optimistic these days.  Whenever I overeat, I just tell myself I'm building muscle with the extra calories.  Of course this only works if you actually get to the gym, and I have, and I did, so there.  The so there is not for you kind readers, it's for the judgemental voice in my head.  (Wait, you'll never believe this, according to spell check, "judgemental" isn't a word.  Unless I spelled it wrong.)  I think I'll have to give her a name so that we can dialogue.  At any rate, I'm eager to start The third Turbulence Training challenge on 9/9.  This is where I'll be waxing philosophical on the hows and whys of my physical transformation.  Good luck to all, and let's all stay in the game!  P.S. just looked up judgemental-drop the e!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Beauty Building

What is it about staring something new that is so daunting?  It must be paralyzing perfectionism rearing its ugly head.  This is just a blog, not rocket science, no harm will come to anyone if I'm dull or silly.  So how did I get to this place posting my thoughts for who knows who?  Turbulence Training did it.  I started about four months ago, and I've had the kind of success that amazes me.  As a 44 year old wife and mother, I was beginning to think that the strut might be gone for good.  I'm 5'2", and I weighed 153lbs, in spite of the fact that I've been on a diet for the past seven years!  Well, maybe with a break for a party or a holiday here and there.  Back in April, I saw the candid photos from my son's birthday party.  You know those pictures you don't know are being taken, so you don't have a chance to hide your body behind something?  Oh yeah.  I got a good look at myself from the back, and I determined not to go gently into that dark night.  Of course the Dark Night I'm referring to isn't The End, or Batman for that matter.  It's the relinquishment (is that a word? Guess so, because spell check didn't freak out.) of your own physical beauty.  The point at which you say the quest isn't worth it any more.  Now I am aware that there are many more noble pursuits, and too much focus on the way you look can make you miss a lot of what life has to offer, but if you can bring back the look and feeling of youth and health, why not?  I'll tell you why not, because it's always been so hard to do!  Except now I have found a way to be fit again that isn't a total drag.  I hope this is a good enough start.  There are so many things I do want to say about building beauty on the inside and the outside.  This seems like a good place to say them.