Monday, December 6, 2010

Finding a way...........

I've been struggling a bit at for the last few weeks with a few things, one being the same old same old mentality with my weight, how I look, self worth etc etc.

I don’t think I have ever really revealed the depths to a lot of my issues on my blog and nor will I now, just to say I have had a life long struggle with all things image, weight, confidence etc. Most of you have seen the ‘big’pics.

When I say life long I think I remember feeling ‘chunky’ from about 10 or 11, actually I think I was told that? Anyway so maybe 25 years now, seriously WTF!!

I do believe being in an industry that is image focused since I was 16 has not helped and maybe even contributed, being 100kg plus and down twice brings it own issues and also competing twice has screwed with my expectations of myself mentally plus also physically had an impact.

Anyway… now, having lost most of Freddy weight that I gained after his birth (yeah, I know, who does that, gains after they’ve had the baby) I was sitting 3 kgs above my pre preggy weight when I fell preg again with Baby No.4.

The pregnancy started well, I was exercising and eating well then the dreaded Morning Sickness and Fatigue that comes in early pregnancy hit me and unfortunately those two things along with looking after a 4 month old baby got the better of me (for those excuse police out there and saying ‘yeah excuses’ ‘Morning sickness and tiredness shouldn't stop you’ I say WTFEver! Nicely of course J) I could only just make it through the day let alone exercise and my eating tended towards what I could stomach and that was carby type snacky stuff more often than not.

So in that 6 week period, thank god it didn’t carry on longer, I gained a ‘few’ kilos, to say I was pissed was an understatement and my whole shitty mentality around food, weight returned, looking in the mirror would set me off.

Luckily I reined it in and had a period of eating well and have been back to clocking up the KM’s, powerwalking with my bubba.
To help me focus I returned to Calorie King and logging cals in and cals out, sticking to a adequate limit to maintain pregnancy and build a healthy bubba, calorie logging works for me and the excess started to drop little by little each week BUT there was something different about the logging thing this time.

I started to feel controlled, anal and restricted and just generally it brought a huge focus to food, it was all about how much this, eat this then, don’t eat this, bad choice, good choice blah blah…..which I can’t stand anymore, its like freakin comp prep all over and last time I checked theres a belly with a baby in and no way I’m wanting to step on stage.

So in my wisdom I thought ‘you are doing well Shar, making good healthy choices, exercising, so why don’t you just eat like this but not have the analytical side of it and stop logging’

So stop logging I did, but I did jot down what I was having at each meal so I could visually see what my day looked like, fruit, veg etc.

This worked for me for a bit………feeling when I was hungry, not eating to numbers, choosing good foods, I even stopped getting on the scales everyday (yep I said everyday!) then came a day when I was tired (normal when you have 3 kids plus other stuff to do right?), hormonal (normal when your pregnant right?) and just generally having I can’t stand myself day.
I was getting dressed and caught myself in the mirror, then come all the ‘habit thoughts’ that are so programmed in that I just have no control over them, they defeat me every time.

From there its not been a great place for me.
I have been basically making shitty food choices and generally abusing myself using food, beating myself up for heading in the same direction with this pregnancy as I did with my 1st two kids and gaining in excess of 30kg, beating myself up for not being ‘normal’ (although my husband assures me there is no ‘normal’), worrying about people judging me etc etc

Then comes the want to design a plan, calorie count and be ‘in control’ (or be controlled) follow a plan, go 100% or nothing, etc etc to try and fix what I'm seeing as a big disaster in the mirror, but again this is just habits I have formed over many years and I do know this isn’t the way for me anymore.

I have done some work on my thoughts and am aware that it has nothing to do with the food and has all to do with loving myself enough to respect and honour myself.

I have a lot to work through but my main aim is to come to the understanding that food really doesn’t have a lot to do with it, I have to be content and love myself enough that I don’t use food to abuse myself if the scale doesn’t tell me the right thing.

I also do not want to have to log every calorie everyday for the rest of my life or follow a plan to get to a place and stay there on the scales, its all well and good having something that works for you, a plan, a way you do things, following the latest diet etc but are you really able to follow that for the rest of your life to stay at the place you get to?

There are times when calorie counting, planning, having someone coach me will be of use to me, for example I may want to run a ½ marathon/marathon (always been a goal of mine, I LOVE running) and knowing that I am fuelling my body adequately would be an advantage………..I may want to compete again one day (almost 100% sure I wont but never say never) and then a plan/knowing the ins and outs is essential……
but to be
- a mum,
- to function well each day,
- to be a healthy role model,
- to be a size 10-12 and look good in my clothes not skeletal

do I need to be anal?
do I need to log everything?
do I need to deprive myself of a Chai latte (insert daily treat here)?
do I need to be thinking what the next meal is because I’m hungry?
do I need to say we can’t cook to my little girl because I cannot resist having a dip and how the FU%^ do you log that?

I crave getting to a place with my ‘weight’ and how I see myself in the mirror where I don’t over analyze and I just let it be.
I over think / analyse a lot and just need to keep it simple as posted by Alicia and Nicole last week.
Eat when hungry, stay active and do exercise because I love it and look after me and my true self.

I am overweight right now (for the stage of pregnancy I’m at) there is no excuse for gaining more than recommended in pregnancy, I do want to be healthy and fit, I do want to ‘look’ good and wear my fav clothes but I just need to work out the way of getting there this time (yeah again…yawn) that is doable without pain, suffering and restriction and that is maintainable long term, because at the end of the day if its not long term, I’ll be here again over and over, year after year and that is what I am not willing to do anymore.

Lets see what happens……………………..but one things for sure, I have more important things to focus my energy on and maybe if I do things will fall into place for themselves?
Thanks for listening xx


Nicole said...

Shar honey, can I just say that I just read your blog and nodded my head in agreement to A LOT of things that you wrote. Believe me, you are not alone in your day to day struggles with weight, body image, self esteem, food, overthinking etc..

I know I certainly struggle with these things on a daily basis and it gives me the shits to say the least as I just want to be able to eat the foods that I love, be healthy and enjoy life without these thoughts constantly running through my head! Hey! I'm still trying to lose my honeymoon & baby weight LOL!

Oh and I would hardly call looking after three children one of which is still a baby and dealing with pregnancy #4!! an excuse. I honestly don't know how you do it and think you are just amazing to be doing all that you do and still function! Being a mum is one of the hardest jobs in the world so don't forget to give yourself a gold star on a daily basis :)

Anyway, this is getting very long, so hugs and kisses from me to you Shar & Eva is here sending Freddy (her birth day partner) lots of kisses and giggles :) xxx I hope you have a FAB holiday!!!!

Shar said...

Thanks Nicole!! it really does help to know others can relate.

Its very easy to believe that everyone else is 'normal' and that can make the struggles feel even worse.

I understand it shittingyou fully, I'm at that 'over it' stage but know that balance and contentment with myself has to be just around the corner as its been a fight for way to long.

THANKS for commenting
PS - Being a mum isn't one of the hardest jobs, I think it is THE hardest job!!but rewarding :)

Alicia said...

What a heartfelt post Shar. From what I can gather, there are a few of us girls that have competed in the last few years and have gone on to have babies, and we're really struggling with food and body issues post-baby. Not just the having a few extra things on the weekend, but a complete and utter food meltdown.

It's been so hard to strike that happy medium afterwards, especially when a baby does take up most of your time.

I gained 22kg with Ava and that was watching what I eat (most of the time) and doing some form of exercise during my pregnancy. I just now put it down to that's the way my body reacts when pregnant. Nothing I can do about it.

Big hugs to you xoxo

Shar said...

Thanks Alicia.
I thought Id post it as I always wanted my blog to be a place where I documented everything, the good, the bad and the ugly.

I do feel better now I have decided it WILL NOT rule my life anymore and what will be will be.

Doesn't stop my striving to be fit and healthy but no more restriction/obsessing and stopping and starting.

Your right its hard to find the happy medium but hey we can only try right?


LizN said...

Hi Shar,
I gained weight after bubs was born due to all sorts of unresolved issues. The biggest factor in keeping most of the weight off long term has been backing myself more. I think the power of the mind and what we think about ourselves plays a huge part.


Kek said...

Shar, you're gorgeous! (((HUGE hug)))

I had the same experience with morning sickness, which was then followed by constant heartburn - and the ONLY thing that kept it at bay was eating starchy foods all day long... Of course the resultant massive weight gain was far from ideal, but getting through the pregnancy reasonably happily and ending up with a healthy baby is the important thing, right?

Blogging about your thoughts and feelings can only help. For what it's worth, I think you're on the right track and you'll get there in the end.


Hilary said...

What an awesome, honest post Shar! I've been going through a lot of the same - two steps forward and two steps back every couple of weeks... When Skye went through the 4 month sleep regression and was waking 4 or 5 times a night, I coped by eating a LOT of sugar - and consequently I gained quite a few kilos in just a couple of months, which I'm still battling to lose.

I get a bit sick of logging foods all the time too - I'm just using a training journal at the moment, but at least I feel more in control when I do this. The days when I dont record anything are generally the days where I am "slack" with food! I wish it didn't have to be this way though!

I've been finding it a lot tougher now with just one kid to look after (everybody else comes first, right?), I cant imagine how hard it must be with 3, plus another on the way!

Its hard to find the right balance isn't it? I'm hoping to find it too :)

Hilary xx

Magda said...

Dear Shar,

you are not alone. Although I am mum to only one (adopted) boy I have known just about all of the same struggles and issues as you. Comp prep played a huge part in totally distorting my perception of what is healthy and normal. Its taken 3 years to erase the "I need to eat lean protein and green veg for lunch and dinner to lose / maintain weight." mentality.

The thing that made the biggest difference to me was one wise statement from the SP I worked with "whether you believe you can or you believe you cant, you're right."


Sam D-M said...

Shardio, Liz said it... Power of the Mind..... have a dip, but thats it!

Sometimes we think we want it, but choosing not to have it usually means we forget about it after its gone.

Logging, well, I got pretty lean after having Jethro... I logged but not everyday, just every second or so to make sure I was on track. I gave myself a couple treats a week, enough to satisfy, not big so called 'free meals'.

I only Attacked once a week and did weights 3 times a week. This is enough when you are breastfeeding and eating well.

You know all this stuff, just gotta break the habbits right?

Email me, we havent caught up for ages!


rene said...

Hey Shar

According to your tracker your have 117 days to go until the little man emerges so if I were you I would make those days count.

Imagine how different you could be feeling by the time he arrives if you have exercised every day and made smart food choices? 117 days is a LONG time to make a slow and steady difference to your mental and physical health.

You can do this. I know you can :)

rene xxx

Shar said...

Liz - yep totally agree I do let the old mind games to take over and yes I do need to back myself more, in all areas. x

Hils - Sounds a great idea to log in journal form just recordrd the facts and not the numbers etc that I tend to get all caught up in.

Magda - I did still hang onto the comp diet thing for a while after but did manage to shake it last year when pregnant, but I think my issue more lies with what people or what I think people expect from you once you have competed. Glad you are finding headway and I will be following your running with interest, I can't wai tto get out and run (jog) again!

Samo - Hello !! Thanks for dropping by, I just cannot face logging daily but maybe like you said every 3rd day or so to see how Im going.

Rene - Totally right!! I hit 16kg gain with freddy at 21 weeks and ended up by logging and watching my food choices at only a 9.5kg gain all up by 40 weeks, so yes I have plenty of time, I just have to change my strategy from last time as I am adement I will not log and get caught up in it, but need to learn and make choices on how I feel etc, Thanks for the push.