Where I am right now………

Screen-Shot-2013-11-08-at-8_37_09-AM

Thursday December 5th, 2013 – What has AF meant for me ????

 It has meant and means my lifestyle needs changes, from small to large;

  •  I was told I could no longer train in the way that I had for as long as I could remember. No more runs, wicked weight sessions, HIIT sessions, Super Saturday Sessions – nothing, except breathing exercises and 30min of either cleaning, gardening, walking or dancing around the house (which doc called “crazy dance”). All I was allowed to do was these to a point of “panting” plus a small list of stretches to do daily. MORTIFIED. So as soon as my on again off again training regime came to a stop (about 6 weeks ago) the weight piled on at a rate of about 1kg a week, I’m proud to say it’s down to about half that a week now, but we aren’t quite in a balanced state yet as the body is still storing and I’m not spending enough energy. Last week I started introducing some “proper” gym sessions. It wiped me out completely and I struggled. So that push last week made me crash again this week and it is tonight (so 3 missed days plus the weekend) that I’ve done what I consider to be nothing. I mean mowing lawns to me is a chore not an exercise. So it’s a fine line which I’m still working on. I’m doing much much better than some of the case studies I’ve read where people have suffered for up to 10 years. Screw that !!!!

  • I had to give up all stimulants. Besides the obvious like pre-workouts and energy drinks I also am not to have coffee, black or even green tea, diet soft drinks or chocolate (it contains caffeine). That sucks and I’ll tell you the first week I though I was going to die. I’m much better now but still have chai tea and decaf coffee. Decaf coffee is actually still just as bad as coffee so I have it as a treat. This website explains the pros and cons of decaf nicely >>>http://teeccino.com/building_optimal_health/39183/Decaf-Coffee-And-Health.html
  • No alcohol – OK so this one I’m struggling to behave with as it is the season to be merry and I’ve been rather social. I pay for it dearly and if I have a big Saturday then Sunday I’m a couch spud sipping water.
  • No foods that could potentially cause allergic reactions no matter how minor eg dairy, gluten and wheat. I’ve not had any intolerances to foods but assure you that I do feel better cutting these out. I’m not extreme about it, but I avoid it if I can without causing a scene.
  • I salt my water and food. The body needs salt. Gone are the days (I think it was the 90’s) that salt was the worst thing in the world and will cause massive heart problems. The body needs it, it helps keep fluids in the right concentration, reduces adrenalin spikes, aids blood sugar balance and sleep (well supposedly if you suck some salt before bed it helps you sleep, not proven with me), plus I drink a lot of water and drain my body of it. There is a risk to those with high blood pressure of course, but in general it’s actually good for you. I go for Himalayan Rock Salt as it has trace minerals that help my recovery over processed table salt. Check out this website for 12 reason why salt is beneficial to your body >>>>>>http://empoweredsustenance.com/salt-is-good-for-you/
  • I eat a very caveman like diet as much as possible. If it hasn’t grown or once had a face (had to borrow that from a friend, love it) I don’t eat it. I am not over zealous about this and don’t freak out when I go out to dinner or lunch with friends, but stick to this plan at all opportunities. I feel a lot more balanced and with less mood swings doing this but I’m still gaining weight which is rather irritating.
  • I blend green juices every day and have a minimum of 2 a day as my snacks (with my portion of protein and carbs). It’s a very convenient way to get the minerals and benefits of specific veggies that support adrenal glands and general well being without sitting down to a salad. I add in some “Raw Greenz” to help alkalize the body too. PS regarding Raw Greenz link, This company does some really great scrumptious foods that are gluten, wheat and everything free, be warned not the get the choc granola as you’ll eat a whole bag in the blink of an eye as it is seriously the yummiest thing I’ve come across !!!!
  • I take a lot of supplement vitamins and minerals to support areas that will be lacking due to poor adrenal performance or simply they aid better body function and overall well being which in turn will take pressure of my adrenals trying to balance my body.
  • I meditate up to 5 times a day. It lowers the heart rate (lowering the flight or fight response (sympathetic nerve system)) and helps stimulate the parasympathetic nerve system helping get to a rested state. It’s worked wonders. I thought it was all a load of crap. But seriously, it has brought so many benefits into my life that even when I’ve completely recovered I will always make time to slow down and really feel what’s going on inside and rest my mind. I love an app called “Buddhify”. Can be used at home, travelling and even at the gym. 10 minutes a day would help EVERYONE !!!!!

Fun ride ! I certainly feel a hell of a lot better over these past  weeks instilling these actions, tips and tasks into my lifestyle and understand it’s not going to be a quick fix transformation back into the energy ball I was but I have learnt (very painfully) to look at this as my latest challenge, and probably my most important. It hasn’t been easy but it has breathed new life into me and I want to help others and am now determined to get my qualifications to legally help others J . The immediate future is a challenge but jeez it looks bright !!!

I’m back…..

moving forward

Monday 2nd December 2013

So it’s been a very long time since my last post. Well……. After continual stop starts, awesome weeks then crashing weeks, I saw my Dr a few times to find out why I wasn’t able to maintain what seemed so easy to me over the last few years. Full time job, lots of exercise, healthy and nutritious food, no cravings or binges, lots of energy and just a normal energetic person…….. why couldn’t I keep doing this, why have I changed, what was wrong with me !!!!!!!

Turns out, I burned myself out. Yeah I was a bit “are you for real?, that really happens?” myself…… But turns out that I overworked my poor adrenal glands which, turns out, are rather important for a hell of a lot of basic human functions. I will get into the nitty gritty of it all over time as I don’t want to overload on the first day back J

So basically it all boils down to some simple things a) no hard core training allowed b) very specific nutrition c) no cure, no pill, no potion fixes it, it’s all lifestyle choices and being in tune with myself and what my body is doing. It’s quite interesting now that I actually realise when my adrenalin is absolutely pumping for absolutely no reason. Like simply lying in bed to go to sleep and whoah off we go with the flight for fight mode and I have to get up and try to calm down. Fun times. Hard to believe I use to just lay there thinking “why can’t I sleep, why am I so awake, why am I so worked up?”

So it’s all about recovery for me right now. I have to suck up the fact that I cannot focus on getting my bikini body back just yet, I have to focus on getting my body back to simple and basic health so we can play on an even playing field, then maybe I can start thinking about getting back into my favourite shape.

So come along for a fun ride of recovery if you wish as adrenal fatigue syndrome is actually quite prevalent in our society. It comes in all forms and sizes and can happen to anyone. So if you feel like you want to start feeling generally better, or have similar symptoms that I will share with you then I will be sharing it all – my tips, triumphs and well, hopefully, only a couple of setbacks, with you. Don’t ignore warning signs as the longer you fatigue yourself the harder it is to come back and let me tell you. This sucks !!!!

Mythbusting Kez Style !!!

myth bust
Friday 13th September, 2013 (Day 33 ??? keep losing where I’m up to)
Well being Friday the 13th had be thinking about myths and urban legends so I thought I’d have a look at this closer. There are soooo  many fitness myths that we’ve all heard that it’s seriously laughable. These are my top 10.
1)  I’m a girl, I don’t want to do weights because I’ll look like Arnie – You won’t, end of story, you do not have the same amount of testosterone rolling around in your body like men (who have between 10-30% more). If you start looking like Arnie, call me, I want to know how you did it !!!
2)  Carbs are bad Your body needs carbs to function, they are your primary source of energy…. But this does not include an entire loaf of garlic bread with a giant side of pasta an hour before you’re going to bed :(, simple carbs aren’t a very good choice here. Good complex carbs (oats, grains, nuts) of low GI take longer for the body to break down and give you a more even release of energy over a longer period of time (and keep you fuller longer). Unlike simple carbs like sugar, pasta, refined white bread and rice, they do not make your insulin levels take a giant spike and then a giant fall making you want more more more !!!
3)  Spot reducing (like doing lower body weights only to reduce the booty) – Think about it. No matter what you do your body will do it’s own thing and take fat from where ever it feels to convert it to energy to support your exercise, no matter what exercise…running, weights, step, pump, walking, squats etc etc doesn’t matter, body needs energy, it will burn what it needs.
4)  I weighed a kilo more this week, it must be muscle !!! – Well this does certainly change per person as a lot of factors like genetics, type of training, diet, gender and age have a play in this. Some people can notice gains quite quickly, others a lot longer, but generally it takes a relatively long time to build significant muscle like a kilo and it takes proper muscle building training and nutrition as well to facilitate major gains in a short period. With targeted exercise you could generally expect to see some changes in a 6-8 week period again depending on your body type. One website I visited (aworkoutroutine.com) has written an average up (the person writing the article that I read had 10+ years first hand experience (and observations) and has spoken with trainers/coaches) and they published the following guide for an average expectation of how quick you could gain muscle (and in my personal experience I think it’s about right, well for my personal story any way).

Average Natural MAN: between 113grams – 226grams of muscle per week (or about 450gms –     900gms of muscle gained per month).
Average Natural WOMAN: between 54grams – 113grams of muscle per week (or about 226grams –  450grams of muscle gained per month).

5)  Fresh Fruit/Veg is better than frozen – With shipping and storage, fresh fruit can often sit around for as long as two weeks before it hits your supermarket. In contrast, frozen fruit is often picked and frozen at the peak of freshness.
6)  I want abs so I’ll do heaps of crunches – Good ole crunches (or any other forms of ab exercises) will in fact help you build mean muscly abs….. but you will not actually see them if you aren’t lean enough. I know when I first started weights I could literally feel how hard my abs were, but they were well hidden under fat and it was only after I started to lean up that I could actually see them and the leaning up had nothing to do with doing ab exercises in particular, it was my overall nutrition and varied training.
7)  I need to take supplements to get into shape – As the name implies, they are to supplement your nutrition. To pick you up in areas that may be lacking, like protein for bodybuilders as an example when they need to up their intake, or you may not be able to eat fish and can’t get enough Omega-3’s from other avenues…. But you do not need to just have shakes, pills and powders because you are now getting into shape…. They have their place to help you and you should seek advice on what would be best for you or beneficial to you.
8)  I ate crap food, but it’s ok I’ll train longer – One of my favourite sayings, ‘you can’t out-train bad nutrition”. It’s not just the energy in and energy out, all the ingredients can have their part to play, for example the fact that sugar is the ultimate enemy for stopping weight/fat loss. Your body will burn that sugar BEFORE anything else. So dig into your chocolate, and then the first hour or so of training (the more you’ve had obviously the longer you have to train) is WASTED burning off that sugar instead of your stored fat….
9)  I need to basically live on lettuce leaves and starve to lose weight – The idea is a balanced, healthy and proportionate nutrition plan. You do not have to starve or be a rabbit. The reason most educated people reach for the salad bag when they are serious about losing weight and starting a healthy lifestyle is that you can have an entire bag of mixed veggies or salad leaves which will have more nutritional bang for your energy (calorie/kilojoules) buck than say a quarter of a mars bar. Your tummy will be fuller longer from the fibre…. Geez there are so many reasons for reaching for some greens when you want to lead a more healthy lifestyle and starving is not one of them. Yes you do need to lower your energy input to lose weight, but this shouldn’t mean that you have air for snacks instead of good wholesome food. Basically you can fit a bucket load of healthy choice food on your plate for the same calories as a small amount crap food.

10)  I have to do cardio to lose weight – ALL EXERCISE WILL HELP YOU LOSE WEIGHT, energy in, energy out. Nutrition has a large part to play in your weight loss journey. Simples.

WOW – thinking of 10 was actually harder than I thought, but there are quite a few myths about and all you need to do is listen. We believe so many untruths because a) they are told and say them ourselves time and time again without even checking if it’s true and b) they suit us and make us feel better about ourselves, eg gaining a kilo in a week and telling yourself it’s just muscle is far more acceptable mentally than truthfully looking at your nutrition and exercise or even other reasons like “that time of the month” or water retention etc.   Well I’m all typed out after all that, so stay healthy.

References
http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/workout/tips/strategy/top-10-fitness-myths/
http://www.gymjunkies.com/fitness-myths/
http://well.wvu.edu/articles/10_dieting_myths
http://howtobuildmuscleask.com/how-long-does-it-take-to-build-muscle/
www.livestrong.com/…/213868-how-long-does-it-take-to-gain-lean-muscle-mass/
www.musclebuildingdaily.com/muscle/how-long-does-it-take-to-build-muscle.php
http://www.aworkoutroutine.com/how-much-muscle-can-you-gain/

Detoxing Sucks

detox

Monday 12th August, 2013 (Re-starting the counter, Day 1)

Ok so first of all I’m re-starting the counter. Today I AM ready to make a difference in my life. I FEEL fricken ready and totally pumped and I’ve made the decision to change my lifestyle. I do need to complete some tasks (from Michelle Bridges (MB)) to keep my mental game clear, which I anticipate to finish this week.

So, today I started with a fitness test as my morning cardio and a uphill walk on the treadie. I thought I was going to have a freaking heart attack rowing my 1km time trial, but I made it AND I’m pretty happy that my “unofficial” time (as I didn’t have a witness so you’ll have to take my word for it) was faster than the current female 1km rower challenge leader in our gym…. Might have to take part in that challenge perhaps…..

But to the point of today’s post, today is the first day of my healthy 12week nutrition plan (thank you MB) which has cut out processed sugars and sweets and junk etc etc…. I’m feeling it, I’m really feeling it. I feel dry and headachey….. Generally yuck, really yuck. And oily, eeewwwww. My poor body is trying to flush out these horrid toxins I’ve been cramming in over the last couple of weeks during my very weak attempts at getting my health back on track. I’m drinking so much water and green tea but still feel very dry, toxic and horrible. NEVER AGAIN !!! Feeling like this is crap, it truly sucks, I just want to go to bed and sleep it off. I actually feel hungover, from food !!!!. I know I’ve got between 1 day and 2 weeks of detoxing all that crap out and it’s not going to be fun. But it’ll be worth it !!!!!