240 and holding…

I learned a couple of things about myself and my body this week. First off, I quit the fitness challenge that I had started a couple of weeks ago. I felt like such a failure. There were a lot of things that weren’t working about it. I was frustrated at my lack of results, annoyed that I was confused about what the problem was, and suffering a loss of confidence in what I wanted to accomplish. Before this challenge and before I started the training at the gym, I didn’t really care about my weight. I liked the way I looked and I was comfortable in my own skin. I had JUST gotten comfortable declaring I was a Bear. (For those not in the know…a Bear is a gay man who is larger than the average bear, moderately to severely hairy, and overall a man’s man.) I was a Bear and I was proud to be one…grrr.

But then I started losing weight. All of a sudden I was looking better and feeling better about myself. It’s not that I wasn’t already feeling that way, it’s just it was a new feeling…something I hadn’t felt in a long time…attractive. I know it’s silly to say this because I do know I’m not an ugly man, but feeling attractive was a whole other experience. And, in the past, feeling attractive was dangerous. It meant I would be tempted by other attractive men, or men who were attracted to me. It meant having feelings. I hate that. Feelings really mess me up because often I don’t know WHAT the feeling is I’m feeling…it’s like I’m so dumb in that area of life!

So here I am at 240lbs for the second week in a row. I’ve quit the fitness challenge and, thought I’m upset about that, I feel somewhat confident that this lifestyle change would stick…finally! I discovered that the recipes on the challenge were a little more complicated than what I was expecting. So I stuck with the couple that I, or my partner, could prepare. I was drinking a peach smoothie in the morning (chock full of flax), Chicken Salad with 4 cups of mixed greens, Wasa crackers for snacks and Sloppy Joes made with turkey and non-salt tomato sauce. No problems…I love all of these things. But I was totally STUFFED AND STOPPED UP. I’d sit on the toilet for 20 minutes at a time and nothing! Occasionally I’d have a bowel movement, but for the most part I was carrying it all around with me all week. (I know this is gross…but I need to share so that everyone who’s ever had to deal with this or is dealing with it understands all of this!)

After I quit, I ate some stuff off the plan and my stomach got a little upset. In no time at all, I was already feeling lighter…if you get my drift. I had already been drinking a lot of water, so drinking an espresso was a shock to my body. It turned out to be a good shock. Just for shits and giggles (kidding) I thought I’d weigh myself. 237 pounds. What the hell? All this time I had unknowingly been constipated. My body was trying to tell me something…but I wasn’t listening. Not listening to my body isn’t a new development. I’ve been ‘not listening’ for a long time and I have mucho experience with it! But this time felt different…I actually wanted to hear what it was trying to tell me. That was a major development!

While talking to my trainer, he was asking me about my heart rate while exercising. Surely my heart rate was high enough…I was walking 14-15 minute miles around Memorial Park nearly every day. I must be doing something right! I was out there exercising! Surely that must count for SOMETHING!! So I went and bought a heart rate monitor that straps across the chest with a watch. After 30 minutes of walking briskly, I looked at my heart rate and it wasn’t going over 107-109. I didn’t understand it. I was soaking wet when coming home after these walks…I was exhausted. But, I wasn’t near the heart rate I needed to be at to lose anymore weight. The only way I’m going to get there is to jog/run. I’m seriously scared to run again. In the past I was actually really good at it. I had fantastic results when I was running many years ago and I felt great. I don’t know why I’m afraid. I just feel it. It may not be fear…maybe it’s something else?

So now I’m here on Sunday and I’m at 240 still. I now know that I’m going to have to ramp up my cardio if I’m going to move past this plateau. I’ve got the nutrition in place. I’ve got the working out in place. I’ve got support from awesome friends and family. I think I can do this. I’ll keep you posted this week on FaceBook as I take on this new level of my development. I may need some help in getting started so if you have any recommendations and/or encouragement. Mostly I need those two things and at different times. Sometimes the recommendations work. Sometimes the encouragement does the trick. Sometimes just telling me I look hot will work! Thank you for everything and for your support and love! Here’s to another week!

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