Tag Archive | inspiration

WS# 11: Fall In Love

Over the years I have had many people, dear friends and loved ones speak truths over me that I had a hard time believing, let alone hearing.  They would speak of my beauty or my strength or my character, to name a few.

18 years ago, I would flat out deny what was said and actively and aggressively point out why what they said was not true.

10 years ago, I would minimize what they said by adding things to what they said.  “kim you are Beautiful”  were their words and in my head I would add “But _________”.

7 years ago I began to learn to simply say Thank You and pretend I believed what they said.  This became easier to do than to fight with them over why it wasn’t true.

4 Years ago I began this Road to Beautiful, a journey of physical(weight loss) healing, emotional healing(engaging my emotions) and psychological healing(facing my childhood sexual abuse head on) that would bring about a spiritual beauty that would reflect Jesus back to those who meet me.   I had no idea really what this journey would entail but I knew it would be hard and painful.  I did not expect or perhaps comprehend the fullness of the joy that could come with facing the hard stuff of life and actually dealing with it instead of running from it.  4 years ago, I began to put myself first.  I began to deem myself worthy of the time it would take to invest in me and my healing and wholeness.   I decided that regardless of how I felt, I was worth it and no matter what I would act like it.  Fake it till ya make it, right?

This year, as I have begun to see the changes in my body and in my heart and in how I view the world and others around me, I realized that something has shifted.

I used to walk in to the gym and feel intimidated, like I didn’t belong there.  The other day, I walked confidently into the gym, my head held high, making eye contact with those around me and not avoiding the mirrors.  This was MY gym.  I belonged there.

The other day, someone told me I was beautiful and I think for the first time ever, I actually believed them.  I didn’t question the statement.  I didn’t try to justify it or minimize it, not out loud or in my head.  I simply believed them.  Then I cried.

Happy Tears.  What a testament of the healing that has happened on this journey.  Bold steps taken 4 years ago to step out on this journey has led to this moment in time, where I have realized, I have dared to fall in love.  With myself. Not in a narcissistic or arrogant kind of way, but rather in a way that simply accepts truth that has always been present and that I can now believe and embrace.

As I realized all of this, I wonder if this shift in belief happened sometime earlier and if this shift in belief about myself is what has actually brought about my recent weight loss success(combined with Leif and Tate’s expertise).  I don’t have scientific proof about whether what you believe about yourself effects weight loss, but I dare you to try it.  I dare you to fall in love with yourself, make yourself and your health a priority, to fake it til you make it…and see what happens in your own journey.

 

My Personal 100# Celebration/Turkey Trot 2012

Longtime readers know that the Detroit Turkey Trot is a favored run of mine each year.  It started as a challenge to prove I could and has since become a run of gratitude as I bask in the glory of doing what I once never thought I could.  It has become a celebration of my body and all it has been for me despite the abuse I heaped on it with food.  It has become a worship run where I use my body to praise the One who has brought me thus far in life.

This year held special meaning for me as I would be running this race at my lightest weight ever and sans 100 lbs.  While thrilling, I have been struggling with how to give my 100 lb milestone some time and space to be celebrated.  Noted.  Honored. For me.  From Me.

Then an idea hit me.  I would run this race with my usual heart of Thanksgiving, while carrying balloons.  I would carry 10 balloons, 1 for every 10 lbs I have lost so far.  This was a fantastic idea!  I would carry these balloons and at the end, before I crossed the finish line, I would release them, saying goodbye to that weight forever.  Brilliant.

But then came more.  As I reflected on my journey, I realized that with those 100 lbs and the last 4 years of work, I realized I have changed.  I have become a new person and so much more than weight has been lost as I worked through the issues that brought the weight on and kept the weight on over the years.  As I confronted the ugliness of my story, and embraced the beauty of who I am, I lost much, and gained so much more.

So, my balloons became more than just symbols of weight to be released, they became symbols of so much more.  So I began writing on my balloons at 11 PM the night before the race.  I am certain the following words are just a smidge of all I have lost, and that will be lost as I continue my journey, but for now, this is what I have recognized I have lost.  For space sake, I may do a follow-up blog detailing more of what these words mean to me.

Each balloon represented 10 lbs and the following: Shame.  Fear.  Doubt.  Regret.  Hopelessness.  Discouragement.  Negativity.  Powerlessness.  Weakness.  Anger.  Bitterness.  Unforgiveness.  Self-hate.  Condemnation.  The Beast.

So that is the plan.  Run with balloons.  Say goodbye without the weight of them as I cross a finish line and as I learn to embrace who I have become,  Beautiful.

This race I was running alone, so on some level it was lonely to be doing this by myself and on the other hand it was perfectly fitting that I did this on my own while amongst 22,000 people.  I have many fans and friends and supporters who have come alongside me and helped me along as I traveled but I realized as I started to feel sorry for myself for being alone on this day that no matter how many people I have in my corner, I have to make the choices and do what it takes to get to the end.  It is my Journey.  My Results.  My Responsibility.  My Celebration. Mine.  I get to own this fully.  Being alone for this race meant I got to celebrate the way I wanted to without feeling like I had to accommodate anyone else.  Perfect.

Pre-Race with the “Spirit of Detroit” behind me!

So now for a race recap.

Best. Race. Ever.

Balloons were obnoxiously hitting people in the face as I ran and the wind would randomly blow.  Incidentally, my journey has smacked people in the face as well.  Either I have inspired you, annoyed you, or challenged you simply by living my journey out loud.  No apologies.

For the first time in 4 Turkey Trots, I was able to wear my race shirt on race day…or ever, because it fit.

Several people asked about my balloons and I got to share my story.  Others, it was interesting  to note, noticed my balloons, and talked about them amongst their running buddies, coming up with their own interpretations.

I ran with a huge crowd of people the whole time.  Historically, within the first mile, I have fallen so far back that one would not know I was in a race with 22,000 other Detroiters. Not this year.  This year, I PASSED alot of people and as I approached the final half mile, I was in shock that it was almost over…and as I looked at my watch, I realized, I could very well run my fastest 5k ever, without even trying.  (Remind me to write about the Run Thru The Rapids, my fastest recorded time a month ago)

As I headed in to my last half mile, I realized, I was quite tired of carrying these blasted balloons.  Whose idea was this anyway?  You would be surprised how much resistance is created when you have 10 balloons tied together as you try to run!  My arm was tired of the resistance and my hand was tired from gripping them tight so I didn’t lose them.

Coincidentally this is  how I have felt about my weight.  I am tired of carrying it around.  Tired of it getting in my way, and in the way of others, tired of it limiting my mobility and tired of all of the negative emotions it brings with it.

I was nearing the end and ready to let this burden go, once and for all.  I picked up my pace too because now that I knew I could PR without trying, now I was actually gonna TRY and see what I could do!  I sprinted down the hill, around the bend, along the river, through the tunnel (no joke, the only thing missing is Grandma’s house) and there is my stretch of sky to let my burden go in before I cross the finish line…

I paused.  I looked up and let my balloons go.  (I tried to take a picture, but a picture was not meant to be)

In the words of some famous boy band…”Bye-Bye-Bye”
My balloons were just out of range of my camera….and I wasn’t waiting around for re-takes I had a race to finish!

Then I took off, ready to finish my best race yet!

Then, I came to a screeching halt.  I realized, for the first time, what it is like to finish this race in the middle of the pack of finishers.  100 yards and about 15 running seconds away from my finish line, Suddenly, traffic backed up and the race stopped as thousands of runners came into the finish area at the same time with nowhere to go.  It took me another 5 minutes to actually cross the finish line.

My finish line is just under the sign that says “Cobo Hall” So freaking close!! That under 45 time is eluding me…

I am used to finishing so far behind everyone else that the announcer has time to get my bib number, look it up, and then call out my name as I huff and puff to the finish line.  I don’t think I like this middle of the pack business.  I think I am just gonna have to get faster so I finish at the FRONT of the pack, because there is no going backwards for me!

All done and with my medal! (I like medals….)

Final Results. Although my time WOULD have been in the low 44 minute range. Oh well, I keep telling myself a PR was not the goal for this race! Blast my competitive side!

WS#7 Don’t Ditch Your Support Team

This week I got to re-learn how important my support team is and what happens when I get arrogant enough to think “I got this” and don’t need them and when i let shame win.

I have come to a place in my journey where so many people know what I am up to and know my commitment to this journey, that I could have called on just about anyone to stand with me during last weeks struggle and I would have had no less than 10 people ready to join the battle with me.  It used to be that I intentionally had a very small handful who I would let in to this space with me.  While, it is such a blessing to have so much love and support around me, that same support is a double-edged sword when things get tough and shame creeps in as I fail again and again in my choices.

Last week was an epic week and I learned alot.

  • In case you missed it, I discovered that I have lost 100 lbs from my all time high weight(as recorded by my doc!
  • Then I blogged about it, and as you know, if you have been reading for a while, I write quite honestly, which means I often put my words out there then sit back feeling incredibly exposed.
  • Then a friend decided to honor me with a 100 lb party and invited all of blogdom and all of my FB world to join in by sending me stories of how my life lived out loud has impacted theirs.
  • Then, a boy happened on the scene of my life.  ok he came on scene a few months ago, but this week it became apparent that there may be some mutual interest, which, while exciting, also has my panties all up in a bunch, as this is all new territory to me with new levels of vulnerability being reached.
  • and then, basic life needs took over.  Things I needed to put some time into and with limited hours other things got cut out such as meal prep and workouts.

So that is what was going on.  All of that left me feeling quite shaken, vulnerable, exposed, and terrified.  What if I can’t keep going?  What if I can’t maintain this?  What if my body stops working again?  What if I let all of you down?  What if…???

In response to all these questions/fears that there are no answers to, I ate.  I ate fried chicken and oatmeal cream pies.  I ate at restaurants I had no business smelling at let alone eating at, one of which was a chinese buffet.

In the midst of this, I failed to let “Coach”  or Aaron know the reality of what was going on.  I failed to let Tate in on the reality of my struggle.  I failed to ask for help in sorting through what was going on for me.  I pretended I was ok.  I pretended that I was strong enough to handle it.  I tried to rationalize my way through things instead of sitting down and letting myself have a moment to honestly feel the depths of my fears and instead at every hint of them rising up, I stuffed them back with food.  I hid.

This is what I know to be true, more than anything else for me.  When I sit in a dark place and allow my sin and my shame to keep me in a dark place and I don’t speak it out into the universe, when I don’t shine a bright light on it by exposing it and myself to others(my support team), I cannot win.  I will sink further and further into darkness and it will become harder and harder to pull out.  When I fail to utilize my support team, people who loved me at 368 lbs and rising and who love me at my 260ish lbs and shrinking, I fail.   When my arrogance rises up and I begin to think I can handle all that life throws at me, I fail.  When I keep things secret, I fail.

So, my winning strategy for this week is to USE YOUR SUPPORT TEAM!  Don’t ditch them in a time of crisis, pull them in closer.  Hold on to your lifelines as tight as you need to and always ask for help.  There is no shame in asking for help!

Incredibly valuable lessons were re-learned for me this week and I am grateful for opportunities to go again.

Dear Murph

Dear Murph,

On Memorial Day, I decided to go against my trainers instructions and participate in a Hero WOD  in your honor.  You died for your country trying to save the lives of your squad, the least I could do was attempt your favorite Crossfit workout that was named after you!

It was awful, Murph.  I don’t know why you liked this workout so much.  I swear I died 3 times as I pushed my carb depleted body through each thing and 4 men ran my final mile with me to help get me through.  My trainers had told me not to do Crossfit for a while.  I didn’t understand fully the concept of “fuel utilization” or how depleted my body really was for anything besides low intensity stuff.  I just wanted to have fun and I missed Crossfit, so I did it.  It took me 1:15 to get through it all, plus 25 minutes of laying on the ground immediately after and then I went home and slept the rest of the day.

I was proud of the accomplishment, but this workout of yours also took me out of the game for about 4 days.

3 months later, and just this week, on Labor Day, I had the opportunity to do Murph again, this time with Leif and Tate’s permission and with proper nutritional fuel to get through it.

For those, reading who don’t know, this is the workout called Murph

  • 1 Mile Run
  • 100 pull ups
  • 200 push ups
  • 300 squats
  • 1 Mile run

Do the above as fast as possible.

I set myself a goal, one I didn’t REALLY believe I could do, but I needed to stretch for something.  I wanted to finish in under an hour.  I knew it was a lot of time to take off, especially since that was the last time I had done Crossfit, but I had to try.

35 minutes in, Murph, I realized I was almost done with all of the squats.  I knew something was wrong.  There was NO WAY I had completed all of the above in 35 minutes and was on pace to finish this thing in 50 minutes.  I looked at my chalk tally marks and re-added things up, and realized…I was short 100 pushups and 100 squats!

That’s ok.  I felt good.  5 rounds of 20 and 20 and I would be done and on my final run.    I watched the clock and as I finished the squats/push ups,  the clock read 44 minutes in.

Now, if only I can run another 15 min mile, I will have met my goal.

Here is the thing though Murph.  I rarely can do a 15 minute mile.  I mean, if I do, it is usually a fluke and it is on fresh legs.  Not on legs that are burned out from 300 squats!  I headed out and kept my eye on my watch.  Unfortunately, I had to do a little walking to catch my breath.

As I rounded my last corner and was on the final stretch, I thought for SURE I blew it. My walking slowed me down. NO WAY did I make a 15 minute mile.  Something in me stirred though as I told myself I had not made my time.

“How do you KNOW you didn’t, Kim?”  “You can’t possibly know until you get in that building and see the official clock!”  How will you feel if you take the easy jog in, only to find out you missed your goal by seconds?”

Kim, you won’t know unless you haul ass down this block and run into that building to see what that clock says.   Get moving.

I moved.   I ran faster than I have ever run for that final 2 blocks and ran into the building.

59:55

I. Did. It.

Lesson:  You will never know what you are capable of or the thrill of blasting through a goal unless you are willing to push yourself harder than ever before.  And I am capable of far more than I think I am, limited only by myself.

I didn’t believe I could do this WOD in under an hour when I set the goal but I also wasn’t willing to settle for less than 110% effort.  Also, it is amazing what being 30lbs lighter and having carbs in your system will do for a workout like this.

As for dying, I went hiking that afternoon.  No dying for me this day, only extreme living!

 

“I Can’t” VS “I Get To”

I am finding that this process requires all sorts of Jedi mind tricks to get through to the other side.  You have already read about how I will make/buy delicious things that I want and then choose to give them away.  This next one is more of a conscious shift in how I choose to relate to this journey.

Quite often, I find myself frustrated by what I cannot do/have.  In the physical training realm, I MISS my really fun Crossfit workouts. I miss the high intensity badassery of it all.  I miss throwing weights and dropping them.  I miss running and training.  The last four years, part of what has kept me going is the shorter term goals of races to run and things to do just because I can!  When the weight wasn’t coming off I could console myself with the fact that “at least I can run a half marathon” or “at least I can do a spring triathlon”.

Now, the fat is coming off my body but I am not allowed to do those things I have come to love(at least for a time) because it isn’t the most effective method of training for how Leif and Tate are manipulating my body nutritionally.   I often try to reframe my goals, but another 150 lbs sounds too daunting to take on.  So I break it down into smaller goals.  50 lbs.  But the reality is, I cannot control how or when that happens.  That is Leif and Tate’s job. I just get to do what I am told.  Sheesh!  No wonder I feel so out of control.   I have chosen to trust 2 virtual strangers with everything that relates to my fitness and nutrition planning and while they tell me following the plan is always my choice, the alternative doesn’t really feel like a choice at all!

So quite often I find myself whining.

“I can’t eat another friggin egg white, Tate!”

“I can’t walk alone every single day Tate, I am bored out of my mind!”

“No, friend, I can’t Crossfit with you today, I am not allowed.”

“Ummm, no I can’t do sprints, it’s not allowed this week.”

What I have begun to do to counteract the effects of the “I can’t” is come up with the things that “I GET TO”

I GET TO eat food that has the best nutritional profile for my goals.

I GET TO walk each day, move my body, and lately, I have a friend to do it with.

I GET TO do the kind of workouts that will further my long-term goal of fat loss, priming my body to be at its very best once I am released to run, tri, or Crossfit again.

I GET TO order my body in such a way that it reflects the freedom that I have received on the inside as I have walked out emotional healing.

On any given day my list of “I can’t” changes and grows.  Each day I GET TO, re-frame how I am thinking so that I can see the benefit.

A bit Pollyanna-ish?  Perhaps.  But as long as I am not stuffing my emotions and I am actually processing them out, then I say, what ever works to keep me in the game and on the field.

Today, actually, right NOW, my big I CAN’T is.  I CAN’T stay up to eat my last meal, I am sick and need my rest.

I GET TO stay up a little while longer, knowing I came home early from work and did plenty of resting.  I GET TO give my body ALL of the nutrition it needs so it can fight off whatever I have come down with.  Less nutrition will NOT help me get better faster.

Who Is THAT Girl?

If you are reading chronologically, I am sure I have you very confused as to my current state of mind.  Don’t worry, you are not alone.  It truly does change from moment to moment and often leaves me confused too…and part of this is me catching up on blogs I have written in my head on my long walks that I get to do for cardio.

Last week, or perhaps the week before I was out for a morning walk and was crossing a major intersection.  As I walked, and sang to my IPOD, I looked around and noticed a man(an attractive man) watching me as he waited for his light to change.

Historically, I would have automatically gone to a place of shame and assumed that this man was staring at me in disbelief that this massive woman was out walking.

Not that day.  On that day, I went with the assumption that he was checking me out.  (Yes, it was a confident feeling day).

Historically, I would have looked back down at the ground and avoided eye contact and hurried myself along.

Not that day.  Instead I boldly made eye contact with him the whole way as I crossed a 5 lane road.  I smiled.  I wanted him to know that I knew he was watching me.

********

Switch to work:  A man I find attractive came in to the credit union where I work.  I love to wait on him, mainly because he is just a very kind man with a good heart and a great smile….and he has ALWAYS called me beautiful.  What woman doesn’t like to hear that?  Especially when on some level you believe him when 99% of the time when anyone else calls you beautiful, you dismiss it as delusional thought patterns of the giver of such praise.  For whatever reason, I also feel pretty safe around this man.  I don’t get a creeper vibe from him at all and I have excellent creepdar!  Truth be told, if he had ever asked me out (before his recent marriage of course) I very well might have said yes!

Anyway, he came in and walked up to me and told me I had to stop.  Puzzled, I asked exactly what it was that I had to stop.  He told me that every time he comes in, whether I wait on him or not, he notices me and how I am shrinking so fast.  He said he is afraid one day he is going to walk in and not recognize me!  I just smiled at him and I am sure turned beet red as he referred to me as “Damn Sexy!”

********

Another attractive man came into work.  Another one of my favorites.  He will let others do his transactions but anything beyond cash in/out, he waits for me.  I saw him come in and saw him waiting in the lobby so I went out and asked if he was waiting to see me.  He was, so I told him to come in my office and proceeded to walk in front of him as I led him in.

All of a sudden I hear.
MMM HMmmmm I SEE!  MMMM MMMM MMMM yes, I do see!

I turned around, somehow knowing what he was talking about, and grinned.  What exactly is it that you see Teresz?

MMM MMM yes maam I SEE.  Diet’s workin!!

I laughed, and told him to knock it off.  1. You are married and shouldn’t be checking out my butt 2. you are embarrassing me!

Secretly, I was delighted. This, was a first for me.

*********

I am currently at my lightest weight ever. I have often wondered who I would become as my body shrank.  I recently wrote a guest blog post for a friend about perseverance and in it I said that it is strange to be living in a body that doesn’t fit who I am.  It is like it isn’t me.  I am not home yet.

I am an athlete.  My body does not reflect this.

I can lift fairly heavy weights and keep growing stronger all the time.  You would never know this by looking at me.

I can run.  In fact, I love to run and am a RUNNER!  Who would think that if they just looked at me?

See, I feel like I am living in a body that is not home.  I am not comfortable in my skin, because it is not a true reflection of me, the me on the inside.

As I shrink, and I begin to fit into my new body, I also wonder how I will change.  Already there seems to be a new Kim emerging.  I used to think I was pretty confident and bold and adventurous.  But there seems to be a new level of that emerging and I don’t know who that girl is that makes bold eye contact with men on the street, or who laughs and flirts as men call her beautiful, or who blushes over compliments…because she is enjoying being delighted in.

No, I don’t know who that girl is…but I LIKE HER and I cannot wait to get to know her better!

Shopping At 22

I have never been the stereotypical girl who loves to shop.  I hunt.  I make a list of what I need and go in search of those items.  If I don’t find it within 5 minutes in a store, I walk out. I don’t typically wander into a random store and look around.  I don’t go to the mall, ever!  I know, you might be questioning whether I am a girl at all at this point, but trust me, I am.

My experiences with shopping have never been pleasant.   As a child, in 6th grade, I didn’t fit in the clothes designed for the average 6th grader.  I had to go up to the next level to find clothes to fit.  By the time I was in high school, I was already in the “plus” size section, but they didn’t really have that then.  Needless to say, finding clothes that fit and were cute has ALWAYS been a challenge.  Is it any wonder that I avoid stores at all costs, when every time I enter one I have to buy another size up and leave feeling awful about myself?

This past week, I was forced to have to go shopping.  My clothes just don’t fit me any more. I am oh so blessed with “good hips” so while the pants will still stay on my hips, despite being super loose in the waist, they just look like I am wearing a saggy diaper these days.  Way too baggy in the butt and legs.

I knew this day was coming where I would have to go shopping but I didn’t want to spend a ton of money on my transitional clothing and I have NEVER had luck at the thrift stores, mainly because I don’t have the patience to look at every piece of clothing to determine its worth.  But you know you gotta suck it up when your boss approaches you about your saggy bottom pants.

SO I sucked it up and off I went to the thrift store.   I kept picking things up and finding things I liked but when I tried it on I was shocked to discover almost everything I picked up was way too big.  I couldn’t wrap my head around what was happening.  This has NEVER been my experience.  Then I realized, I am picking up clothes in the sizes that I wore 5 months ago or MORE.

Then began the discovering of my new size.

What an adventure.

A delight really.

I have never known the experience of shopping and having things be too big.  Far too often, the BIGGEST size offered was still too small.  I have never known what it was like to have to go DOWN in size in a store. 4 years ago, I was fast approaching a size that one could only get online and was quickly getting relegated to all elastic waisted pants and oversize floral button down prints.  That is no longer the case.

I am down to a size 22, and yes that is 10 sizes down from when I started 4 years ago.  You might wonder why I never had this experience before now.  Hunting takes the joy from shopping.  You don’t allow yourself to delight in the find.  You get what you need and you get out.  Fast.

This week, I allowed myself the delight of actually shopping and discovering my new size all while knowing that soon enough my size won’t be a 2 digit number anymore.