Preseason Task 4 – Gear Up

So if you know me you know for the last five weeks I’ve been training mean.  I can hardly believe the improvement in my strength, the way I can sustain a 80% of maximum heart throughout a workout and the overall improvement in my fitness.  And at “Pain in the Park” today I could get from the ground to standing with only using one hand.  Its a huge deal, as this time last year I didn’t dare sit on the ground as I was worried my 160kg frame would remain there.

These past five weeks have seen a huge shift in the way I perceive myself while I’m working out.  Instead of doubting myself, I’m just trying my best.  Instead of giving up, I’m pushing for just a little longer.  Instead of saying I can’t, I’m saying I will.

Today was a good example. And it involved planks.

No not those planks – these planks. 







Part of the boxing workout involved doing three twenty second planks in between bouts of boxing.  The first plank I said to myself – I’m getting off my knees and onto my toes – never done either of those things before.

That is,
1. Plank on toes.

2. Deciding I could do an exercise above a beginner level when I previously thought it was beyond me.

First twenty seconds finished with me still on my toes.

Second twenty seconds I started on my toes, but my inner voice said – “You can get on your knees if you think you won’t make it.”  How helpful was that thought?  At the ten second mark I was on my knees.

Third twenty seconds I decided I was going to do the full twenty seconds on my toes.  Each time as I breathed out I said to myself, “I can do this” – and I did.

So what does all this have to do with preseason task four?  Its about training mean and hard.  Its about striving to do my best all the time.  Its about having a plan that will see me achieve my goals.  Its about attempting to do the things I thought were impossible.  Its about having a plan, but being willing to mix it up. It means I will achieve the goals I set in preseason task three.

It means I am going to give it my best shot to move from a beginner level to an intermediate level by the end of Round 1 2012.

My “Gear Up” plan is to be found on the page “The Plan” – you can click on the link above – or the one below to find out what I intend to do this round – starting tomorrow!

Preseason Task 3 Set Your Goals

My ultimate goal, and reason for signing up for the 12wbt in August 2011 is to be 77kgs again, which is about 7kgs under the top of a healthy BMI for my height.  When I achieve that I will be a “comfortable” size 12 again.  As I write this I am 130.9kgs and a size 20/22ish.  So I have to be careful that I am not overwhelmed by the task ahead of me.

Starting this journey in August 2011 I was 155kgs and a “comfortable” size 26.  At my heaviest I was a 165kgs and a barely fitting into size 26.  So, how does one go from my starting point to where I want to be?  Its simple.  By breaking it down into manageable steps and focusing on the things I am in control of – that is, my behaviour, and not worrying about numbers on the scales and clothing tags.  If I care about my health, change my behaviour to demonstrate that I do care about my health and well being than the numbers will happen.

This is a computer simulation of what I look like now at 130kgs.

Right now I have started the c25k program and have completed a whole two days.  I can barely swim one 25m lap of a pool.  I can do these pathetic push ups from the knees but my nose gets no where near the ground. My core strength is better and I can do some more advanced forms of sit ups and hold a plank without shaking from the knees.  I can do a 1km time trial in about ten and a half minutes.  I can not ride a bicycle, but I desperately want to learn, and have a lovely friend who is willing to teach me.

My goals for the 18th March 2012 are to:

1. Run for 3.22kms (2 miles) without stopping.

2. Start swimming three times a week and sign up for stroke correction classes.

3. Have had my first lesson in riding a bike.

4. Weigh 117kgs.

My goals for the 29th April 2012 are to:

1. Run for 8km without stopping.

2. Be able to swim half the distance of the short course of the 2012 Triathlon Pink without stopping.

3. Be able to ride a lap of the 5km Regatta Centre – stopping allowed 😉

4. Weigh 101kgs.

5. Finish the round 0f 12wbt at the intermediate level of training.

My goals for the end of September 2012 are to:

1. Run 14km without stopping.

2. Be able to swim the full distance of the short course of the 2012 Triathlon Pink without stopping.

3. Be able to ride the full distance of the short course of the 2012 Triathlon Pink without stopping.

4. Weigh about 85kgs.

5. Training at the intermediate to advanced level with 12wbt.

My goals for the end of December 2012 are to:

1. Be training for a half marathon in 2013.

2. Training for a slightly longer course in a Triathlon.

3. Riding a bike for fun with my family.

4. Weigh 77kgs.

5. Training at the advanced level on the 12wbt program and signing up to do a round of Lean & Fit.

I will be healthier and happier.

More determined than ever.

Stronger in mind and body.

Is it going to be easy? No, I am going to have to work hard and do everything Michelle Bridges says I should do in order to achieve these goals.

Is it going to be worth it?

What do you think? 😉

Preseason Task 2 – No Excuses

So this is me thinking.

I’d like to say I am deep in thought doing preseason task two, considering my excuses and what I am going to do about them in the future, and how I am going to stay in control of my excuses.

Instead, the truth is that it is New Year’s Eve 2011 and I am thinking what half a cup of steamed rice will look like on my plate as I don’t have a measuring cup with me at the Thai restaurant.  So, if I put too much rice on my plate and consume too many calories my excuse is that I don’t have a measuring cup.  If that’s going to happen anyway, I may as well have as much as I want of the Pad Thai that my family will probably order.  Can you see where this is going?  One moment you are in control and ready to use the 600 calories for the treat meal wisely and feel good about yourself.  The next moment, you make one little excuse, and then before you know it, it has snowballed out of control, you’ve ordered the deep fried ice-cream and you’ve wound up feeling like a failure.

Excuses will do that to a person.  Excuses are best avoided.  If they rear their ugly heads you must be ready to tackle them head on.

How do I know this?  Well, not because of anything that happened at dinner that particular night.  I did manage to stay in control on 31/12/11, have my clear broth soup, stir fry with lots of vegies, approximately half a cup of rice and a taste of the Beef Massamum.

But I have run foul of my excuses last round.

This preseason task has been a tough one for me to face this round, as you might be able to tell since I’ve been working on it for over a week.  This is because I thought I really nailed it last round and got all the excuses under control.  It wasn’t until I started blogging again regularly after Christmas, and reflecting on my mindest, behaviour and choices from Round 3 2011,  that I realised I still have a lot of work to do on this preseason task – and I may still have work to do in future rounds.

It is the Internal Excuses that wrecked havoc with my mindset and my behaviour in the last six weeks of Round 3 2011.  And the thing is I have total control over those internal excuses.

As you may be aware I sprained my left ankle, not once, but twice in the space of ten days in October.  After the second time I decided to not exercise again (not even water workouts – which I enjoy – or working around the injury – both of which my doctor gave the go ahead for), until my doctor gave the all clear for weight bearing  exercise.  Big mistake. My excuse for making that decision was I am getting older (I was a 46 years young at that stage) and had a long  journey ahead of me – and I didn’t want to risk further injury.  What a cop out!  Of course what happened once I allowed myself to make that excuse was that I began procrastinating and making more excuses, which continued even after my doctor gave me the all clear to return to weight bearing exercise.

Once that happened for a couple of weeks the real rot set in.  And it only became clear to me last Sunday what had happened.  I cried a lot last Sunday as I reflected upon my behaviour and prepared to start this particular preseason task.

Once the excuses and procrastination snowballed out of control last round I began to speak harshly to myself.  Those harsh words follow two main themes of internal excuses – and when I wrote down my excuses last round, I only just scratched the surface of one of these excuses.

The first one, is that I am destined to be a failure at whatever I do.  I realise now that by saying that all I am putting into action is a doozy of an internal excuse.  It’s taking the easy way out.  If I give up because I believe I am going to fail anyway I don’t have to do the hard work. And who knows what might happen if I do the hard work?  I might just succeed.  I realised these feelings of failure come from the experience of living with the chronic illness I was diagnosed with in 2003.  And the really silly part is, despite how low I felt at my worst with this illness, I have already proven in other aspects of my life that I am not a failure. The bottom line is, as long as I never give up I have no right to call myself a failure.

The second underlying excuse is that I am not worthy of giving myself the care and attention I need.  In other words I am not worthy of being loved – by myself or others.  That’s what I was actually thinking towards the end of last round.  I realised last week this stems from the rejection I still feel following my birth mother giving my up for adoption at birth forty-six and half years ago.  Straight away you can see how this excuse has no grounds to be taken seriously by myself.  Forty-six and a half years ago, its time to move on princess! (And I say that with love.) My adoptive parents have shown me nothing but unconditional love my whole life.  I seriously believe Mr G is my soul mate, and I am grateful every day to have ever met him. I have Master G and Miss G in my life who are constantly telling me, and showing me how much they love me.  And the bottom line is I don’t need my parents, Mr G, Miss G or Master G to validate my worthiness of love. I am a human.  So therefore I am worthy of  love and respect.  So how can I continue with this excuse in the face of overwhelming evidence that it is not true.

Well, I have decided that these two excuses will no longer influence my decision making or have any power over me.  I have kicked them to the curb. Once and for all.

I am not a failure and I am worthy of love.  Because of these two undeniable truths I will strive to succeed in all aspects of the 12wbt Round 1 2012 and I will treat my body and mind with respect and love.

And if you are thinking – how is she going to do that?  It’s simple – I will JFDI.

What I Ate Wednesday 25-1-12 Total Calories 1121


Banana Bruschetta

297 calories

12wbt recipe







Morning Tea

McDonald’s small skim cappuccino

71 calories









“Sushi Bay” Sushi Train – three items – total calories 311

Miso Soup – 91 calories








Tuna and Salmon Sashimi – 160 calories










Seaweed Salad Battleship – 60 calories










Afternoon Snack

Popcorn – had some of Master G and Miss G’s popcorn at the movies

I estimate about 171 calories worth – when I thought I had had enough I told Master G (the keeper of the popcorn) to smack my hand if I took anymore.








Spinach and Mushroom Frittata

271 calories

12wbt meal













Feeling flat? Too many endorphins? No, just need a rest day!

Thursday 19th January – RPM = 960 calories

Friday 20th January – Cardio in Gym 82 minutes = 945 calories

Saturday 21st January – SSS – Pump = 620 calories + Sh’Bam = 770 + Cardio in Gym (82 mins) 803 calories = 2193 calories

Sunday 22nd January – 3.2km brisk walk = 63 calories on Garmin (Now I know why some runners wear their Polar HRM and Garmin HRM at the same time!)

Monday 23rd January – Manly Scenic Walk 9km = 2355 calories

Tuesday 24th January – c25K = 248 calories + RPM = 741 calories + Zumba = 808 calories = 1877 calories

Wednesday 25th January – Power walk with incline intervals (level 4) on treadmill (30 minutes) = 507 calories

No wonder I’m feeling a little tired right now.

Will blog about “What I Ate Wednesday” (a new regular feature of this blog) tomorrow morning.

Won’t do the training I tweeted about (ie DVD + treadmill walk) tomorrow – don’t want to risk injury or burnout.  I’ve worked hard the last seven days and my body needs a rest.  No matter how much I want to train more.  Mr G has put his foot down though, and said you look tired, you need to give your body a break.

Training tomorrow will be watching one of my favourite movies

Sign a women’s book and make her smile. Tell her to train hard and help her change her outlook.

This photo was taken on Saturday 3rd December 2011, the second last day of Round 3 2011.  Michelle was at Castle Towers for a book signing for her new book – Five minutes a day.  And of course I was there with some friends – who also just happen to be on the 12wbt journey – to meet Michelle and ask her to sign my book.

So why has it taken so long for me to post this photo and write this blog post?  Look at the photo, do you see what I see?  I see someone who has let herself go over a number of years, made a commitment to do something about it and then has not given the last few weeks of the round 100%.  It especially hit home becuase as I walked to the coffee shop where I was meeting my friends,  someone who hadn’t seen me since October gave me the hugest compliment about my weight and how healthy I looked.  I felt fabulous.

I met Michelle, and thanks to my friends coaching me, managed not to cry this time.  And she said she remembered me from the Outdoor Workout in October.  And I of course when she said this I went into a negative head space (while maintaining the smile) and thought, who, the fat one or the blubbering idiot?  No, when she said why, it was because I was the tall one.  Bigger smile

And here I am with my friends.  We were telling Michelle about our trip to Mt Kosciuszko in 2012.  She was so excited and called Billy over to tell him about our plans to walk to the summit together.

Her passion and commitment to what she does is real.  We had to wait quite a while in the queue to see her – but we didn’t mind.  We knew that was becuase she treats everyone as though they are her client for those couple of minutes, and we knew when it came to our turn it would be the same.

And what did she write in my copy of the book?  Train hard! I actually groaned out loud when I saw it.

I thought to myself, right you haven’t given the last few weeks your best effort.  You’ve made excuses about spraining your ankle twice in October, that now, in December, are no longer relavent. There has been “paralysis by analysis”. There have been excuses about being too busy to train. That has to change.

But I am pleased to say now two weeks away from the beginning of Round 1 2012 I am training hard.  My fitness is improving and I feel so much better.  And that’s all I had to do.  Train hard.

PS One of my lovely friends gave me a copy of the book as a gift.  I had pre-ordered a copy from a website when it was first announced it was going to be released.  It arrived the following Tuesday.  I was going to send it back to the online bookstore – but didn’t get around to it with the end of year busyness. I am going to pass it on to one of you!  You can keep it for yourself or give to a friend.  When I get 100 likes on my 77noni facebook page I will hold a draw and someone will win that copy.  The page has 54 likes right now – so another 46 and I give the book away. (Its brand new, I haven’t even taken it out of the packaging!)

My day on a plate, and a wrist band and an iPhone

Yesterday was a day with two red flags!  Eek!  Breakfast at McDonald’s with the family and then lunch out with Miss G (ten) and Master G (13).  Now I can tell right now you’re thinking – have a healthy Mish breakfast before you leave home.  Cut a healthy sandwich and put that in your backpack.  Well – I want to share in the treat with my family (since when did I really regard the Golden Arches as a worthy treat???) and I was packing snacks, and water bottles etc in my back pack so didn’t have room for a sandwich too.  However, I can no show you that I survived this Red Flag day on just under 1200 calories.  Don’t believe me?  Then take a look.

The reason for McDonald’s?  We had an early start – had to have Mr G to Drummoyne by 9.00am on a Monday.  So kids weren’t ready to eat when we left.  And I really wanted a coffee (a big coffee) and Mr G wanted a hot chocolate – yes full cream!  And we wanted it quick, the clock was ticking.

My choice is a tall McCafe cappuccino made with skim, a plain English muffin and vegemite.  Miss G nearly had kittens when she went back to the table with Mr G while I was waiting for the hot drinks, and she unwrapped the plain English muffin and thought that was all she was getting.

My question – what happened to the Uncle Toby’s Oats they used to sell?





A quick snack in the park near the Spit Bridge before we begin our walk.










Time for a snack break on the walk.  I wasn’t really hungry, but I figured a little hit of protein wouldn’t go astray.  This is about 10g of pepitas.








And here is the walk we were doing – and no we didn’t get air lifted out at the 4.5km mark.  This when we stopped for a breather – or a snack break, and the Master G and Miss G wanted to know how far we had come.  I’m glad they did – as the iPhone was almost out of power – so I switched runkeeper off as we needed the phone to rendezvous with Mr G in Drummoyne later in the afternoon.  We ended up walking right around the coastline to Manly Cove ferry wharf to catch the ferry back to Circular Quay.  Its a fabulous walk, and if you live in Sydney and have never done it let me assure you it is well worth while.  If you’re visiting Sydney put it on your list of things to do!  The first half has a lot of ascending steps when you start at the Spit Bridge end of the walk.  But your efforts are compensated.  Won’t say anymore than that!





Lunch for me was a Sushi lunch box with lots of lovely salmon.  As you can see I only just remembered to take the photo for this blog post that I had in mind.  And I was a little bit shaky, would seem I really needed the carbs!  IMy guess is this Sushi Box is about 330 calories.  And honestly, I would have been satisfied with something a little smaller.








It was at that point that Miss G asked what the time was – and I realised that what I was looking at was my heart rate not the hour of the day.  So I quickly took a photo of my calories burn for the walk, and then told Miss G the time.  So, the HRM was running about fifteen minutes longer than it should have at the end, and I don’t think I stopped it on our first snack break, but I think I did stop it on the second one when Master G and Miss G were playing on the beach which is along the walk.  Honestly, I’m not worried, as I’m sure I did 2000 calories in a little over two hours of walking.  I’m not eating the calories back, so it doesn’t really matter that I was forgetful.

Remember that I weigh in at 133kgs last Wednesday – that’s half the reason I could achieve a burn like that.  The other reason is that I am able to successfully maintain my heart rate at 80% of the maximum for the entire time I am walking, with occasional spikes to my maximum while I’m going up stairs and really pushing myself.  I like to keep the readout on the heart rate while I’m training – it helps me decide when I think its hard work whether I’m being a sooky la-la or whether I can push myself a little bit harder at that moment.  I only look at the calories at the end.


A well deserved coffee on the drive home from Drummoyne.  Mr G was desperate for a Frozen Coke from McDonald’s.  Well that’s my excuse anyway.










Dinner – a 12wbt recipe. Crumbed Fish with Smoked Paprika Sweet Potato Wedges.










So the total calories for the day with two Red Flags?

1179 calories


Previous Older Entries