Tuesday, 31 July 2012

My Week 8 Mini Milestone: what it is

Hi :)  I said I'd write on Tuesday night...I don't have anything to report, but I thought I'd drop by and talk about my Week 8 Mini Milestone...I'll be completing it tomorrow :)

We're actually in Week 9 right now but I couldn't complete this task before Sunday because of a few things, I was interstate and also needed to get my bike fixed.

Because...my Mini Milestone is to ride my bike outside, in public.  I haven't ridden it since that day in late 2010 when I came 7000th (see my previous post).

I know, it's not a big deal what happened that day and I did feel amazing afterwards, but...it absolutely wrecked my confidence with riding and I haven't sat on it since.  The other reason is because I have put on so much weight since then (maybe 20kg?) that I am afraid to ride in public because I will look so fat, and also I very honestly don't know if my bike can handle my weight.  Also I physically struggled to ride when I was 20kg less...I can't imagine how much it would hurt to do it now.

So that whole paragraph that I just wrote...do you know what that was?  That was a paragraph full of excuses.  Every single one of them.  Yes it is all real...but I should have knocked those excuses on their heads and JFDoneI.  Anyway - there's no point in regressing too much ;)

The fact is, I have been delaying the inevitable for coming up to 2 years now, and decided to make it my Mini Milestone.  This is a huge thing for me.  I seriously haven't even SAT on my bike since.  I know this, because when I went to do my milestone last week, I realised that the tyres were down and had been down since I swapped tyres after that ride.  I'm not very cycle-technologically advanced and couldn't pump them up, and there were a few other issues so I wiped off the dust (literally), loaded it in my car (see picture!) and took it to a bike shop for a tune up last week.  I pick it up tomorrow.  I'm home from my weekend trip, I'll have a clean, fixed bike, it's Week 8 (9) and I promised myself that I would do this.

I'll let you know how I go when I ride tomorrow night.  I've worked myself up for 2 years for this day.  I can do it :)

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Coming 7000th

I wanted to share with you a little story about why I chose my Week 8 milestone. I'll write another post on Tuesday night about the actual milestone, but this is just to give you a little background- I wrote this in 2010 about when I entered the Brisbane to Gold Coast 100km Cycle Challenge. It's a fairly long story, just warning you :) My milestone will make more sense with this. Till later, Coco xx

2010 Goal #23: Get a bike.
2010 Goal #24: Enter a bike event.
2010 Goal #25: Complete it!

#23 was done, #24 was fairly painless, it was #25 that saw me inserting pink streamers into my bike's handlebars at Southbank at 5:30am on Sunday morning, after just 3 and a half hours sleep. The months and days leading up to now had been a mirage of pain, mental games and disbelief in myself- but those exact feelings were soon to be exemplified when I joined 7000 odd riders to participate in the Wilson HTM Brisbane to Gold Coast 100km Cycle Challenge. I had many things against me, including my training plan that I had let taper off. The great thing about personal goals is that they can be rewritten, so I had changed "Complete it!" to "Show up and do as much as I can".

Just the start was already tough, an amateur showing up with pink streamers amidst thousands of who I decided were all elite, pro riders that could rival the Tour de France. (I told you there were many mind games played). But I was determined to tick off Goal #25, so I rode the quiet Southbank streets, and arrived at the start site. After a quick check of my bike chain at the awesome mechanics tent due to some odd sounds I heard on the short ride from my car that sent waves of panic through me, I had the all clear and approached and entered the 'Start banner'. Mini goal #1 completed. I was on my way- now to see what else I could do!

The bus way was closed for the event, so I made my way down the smooth roads fairly easily. It was a nice stretch and I was finding it fairly easy - I started to think that maybe I could actually get to the end! Other cyclists seemed to minimise rapidly out of view- but I didn't think too much of this, I just kept pedalling and enjoying my iPod's music with the wind rushing past. This was easy!

Then right towards the end of the bus way, I had a sneaking suspicion that I was being followed. I turned my head and realised that I had a slight entourage. Just metres behind me was a sag wagon, behind that was a First Aid van, behind that was a police car with flashing lights, circling me was a police motorbike, and appearing alongside me was another police car. The policeman in the car called out to me and drove to my pace. He said that I might want to increase my speed a bit, as they needed to reopen the bus way. As I sped down a slight hill, I had a brief moment that felt like I was on the Tour, talking to my coach in the car alongside me about my form with Contador up ahead. No Coco!! You are not on Tour, this is a police car and you are holding up Brisbane's bus way!

I was almost off the bus way anyway, so after I exited, I kept going for a few more km's on the roads around Eight Mile Plains. I still had my personal entourage surrounding me, and by now I was feeling a bit of pressure. The sag wagon was not pushing me, but having any car edging behind you in any situation creates the feeling that you're holding them up. I kept going, and as the police motorbike rode alongside me again, I made a big mistake and asked him whether I was the last rider at that point. I had guessed it, but it wasn't until he actually confirmed that I was, that it hit me hard. Only 20km-ish in, and I was coming 7000th.

It was not a race, that was an explicit rule- it was a ride only, no race. But the enormity of knowing that I was right at the very back of such a massive event so early on, was hard to deal with. I kept riding but the tears started flowing, and with the mounting pressure of being surrounded by official cars, I pulled over. The sag wagon loaded my bike into the trailer, and I jumped aboard, an absolute mess. As soon as we approached the next last rider, I realised that there was no pressure from the van. They were simply doing their job, trailing behind the last rider. The driver was lovely and he didn't care! The only pressure would have been if people were too slow and not making the road cut off times (like I had done on the bus way!)

My confidence and energy returned as we slowly loaded more people into the van and drove towards the 1st of 2 rest stops at Eagleby, 40km into the route. I decided that I could keep on going, so when we reached Eagleby, I had my bike loaded off the trailer, ate some food supplied at the rest stop, refilled my water bottle and continued on my way. I felt less pressure now, and knew that if I heard the sound of a vehicle edging behind me again, then that would be ok.

Although it really wasn't a matter of if, as to when. The wagon eventually caught up with me again, but this time I didn't mind. I just kept pedalling. When I realised that there was still about 50km to go, I knew that I couldn't last the entire distance. I wanted to push myself though, so kept going.

When I got to the bottom of a long incline hill that I knew I would need to walk up, I succumbed again to the van. I was ok to keep going for a while, but I didn't feel it was fair to make them follow me as I walked for a while in a cycling event. I stopped for the second time that day and the driver and police again bundled me up into air-conditioning. The van was getting filled up quite quickly, there were apparently a record number of people being picked up that day. Our van got filled and they had to call the second wagon to come back to pick up people along the roadside. Our van then went to offload all of us so that they could return to pick up even more people. There were a mixture of issues, some poor cyclists had flats and broken bikes, others just realised the extent of their stamina, many along the 50km mark.

The van drove us to the 2nd rest stop at Coomera, alongside Dreamworld. I wanted to ride the last 5-10km to the finish line, but there were 20km left between Coomera and the finish at Southport. I felt I had pushed the friendship of my driver quite enough already, and he seemed keen to see how I went from the 20km mark, so again, after eating some more food at the rest stop, I decided to give the last 20km my best shot. And it was tough.

The Gold Coast suburbs seemed to be endless- I swear Runaway Bay and Hope Island are each 20km long! Mind games were gathering widely now, and I was studying road signs like I had never done before, trying to find any skerrick of evidence that I was almost done. There was a bit of head wind, I was sore all over, I was tired, I had had enough, I was crying, I just wanted to get there. Cyclists who had already completed the event and were now cycling back to Brisbane (!) were passing me on the opposite side of the streets, and calling out words of encouragement. This helped so much - I was clinging onto anything to help me along. "Keep going!" "You're doing well!" - they were all very supportive. The many Bicycle Queensland volunteers and police who were manning each intersection were also fantastic- so many of them clapped me on and I was astounded that they had the energy to clap for each cyclist as if we were the only ones riding. They were absolutely amazing. I didn't realise how much I would hang onto every single word called out, and every clap. I needed ANYTHING - I was struggling.

I stopped to readjust my painful backside many times. The whole time I was trying to work out how far I had to go. My bike computer wasn't working, so it was all a matter of guess work. When I decided that I must only have 5km to go, I asked one of the volunteers as I rode past how far I had to go, and they said 9km. Almost double what I thought? That almost broke me.

I was in more mental pain than physical pain now, and still crying, stopped to call my friend who was waiting patiently at the finish line for me. I tried to sound upbeat and that I wasn't far away and he was great, just said to take my time, keep on going. That was the first half of the short phone call. The second half was a near frenzied Coco: "I…don't…think…I…can…do…iiitt!" I was a mess. He repeated to keep on going. I tried, I really did. I was secretly hoping that the sag wagon would come again to my rescue. I never saw it again. I knew that if I asked, my friends would come to get me from where I was. But after this whole time, so close to the end, I couldn’t let myself give up. I HAD to finish this last stint.

Despite having no previous on road riding experience, I took no notice of the heavy traffic driving alongside me, no notice of the last few straggling cyclists passing me, nothing. It didn’t affect me. I had only one focus. The only thought in my head was how I could manage to push myself through to the end.

With the endless coast suburbs continuing, I eventually rounded the corner onto Marine Parade. I knew this street! I had been here many times before…driving. I saw the Gold Coast city skyline- surely it was only 2km more! Yeah, it’s just down the road! This was familiar territory! Whenever I round this corner (driving), I’m almost ‘there’. Excellent!

Well, I'm convinced Marine Parade must have been extended in length. It wasn’t just down the road. It seemed like a lifetime cycling down this street. I was still visually grabbing anything possible to give me hope that I was almost there. I soon realised a police car was shadowing me. At this stage I didn’t care, I didn’t realise what it meant, I was just pedalling. I was trying to spot white items in the distance to see if I could see the white finish banner. Random cyclists who had finished and were now strolling the streets called out more words of encouragement. One guy said that it was just 2km to go and clapped for me. He was so lovely but I was a bit crushed, I thought surely it was only a matter of metres now?? I continued to cry.

When I turned onto the Gold Coast Highway, someone called out that it was just 700m to go. Come on Coco! I was struggling so much, the police car was still right behind me. I heard a loudspeaker announcement: “Not much further to go”. I wasn’t thinking straight and assumed it was from the finish site, an announcer speaking to the crowd. I later realised that it was actually the police behind me, using their loudspeaker, speaking personally to me! Brilliant!

I suddenly rounded a small corner and there it was. Gleaming white, still standing: the finish banner. The significant object of my vision for so many months. Actually seeing it was so surreal.

It all happened so quickly. As I rounded the corner, I suddenly heard cheers, people clapping, cheering my name. It was all a blur as there was another loudspeaker announcement. I again didn’t realise until later that it was the police, but this time they called out: “Give three cheers for the last rider!” All I could focus on were my friends, cheering and calling out my name right next to the banner. My friend had worked hard and had finished his ride around 9am. It was now about 1:15pm. He and his wife had waited for over 4 hours in the hot sun with their gorgeous baby, just for me. I cannot thank them enough and still have the image of them cheering for me.

I sped under the finish banner and made a beeline directly towards them, not paying attention to anything or anyone else. My friend ran over and met me half way, grinning, and I semi fell onto his shoulders as he helped peel my bike off me. They gave me 2 bottles of cold water, one went straight over me, and one went straight inside of me! I was very thirsty. I was a bit wobbly on my feet but not too bad, I think due to all the stops I had made. We picked up my ride event T-shirt and they generously gave me time to settle and change clothes before driving me back to Brisbane.

When I went over the finish line, immediately after hearing publicly that I was the very last rider out of 7000(ish) riders, I was very embarrassed. I wasn’t too disappointed that I didn’t manage to ride the entire 100km as I had already come to terms with the fact that I probably wouldn’t be able to early on. My goal for the day was to just turn up and do my best. That I had done. That part was all ok. I was happy that I had entered, started, and rode as much as I could. I was especially proud that I had conquered the final 20km in particular as I really wanted to feel a sense of accomplishment if I managed to pass the finish line. So overall, I was happy.

But hearing the police loudspeaker announce that I was the last rider as I passed the banner, despite my personal achievements and friends cheering, was a little bit crushing. I had heard that this was Queensland’s biggest bike ride. Friends had told me that they thought I could do it (angel wings). I saw other riders- there were kids, grandparents, all sorts of people. I even got driven a lot of the way! And still, out of 7000, I was very last? I knew that it wasn’t a race, but still, the feeling of being the absolute last to arrive was hard to hear.

However after speaking to my friends and family, and reading the most supportive, amazing messages from friends in the hours following the event, that feeling quickly passed. They made me realise that I came 7000th out of the people who actually did the ride. That I kept getting back on my bike unlike some other people who hopped on the bus and stayed there. That I reached my personal goal. My friends and family were so supportive and encouraging that they made me feel like I had actually completed the whole 100km or came through first! In a matter of a few of hours, I was elated, on top of the world, proud of myself and happy with what I had done.

I started enjoying the particular aspects of my experience. Before the ride, I wasn’t expecting to personally hold up Brisbane’s transport system on the bus way! I’ve never before had a personal police entourage or escort! Having a police car use their loudspeaker just for me was pretty cool! Riding through last is more interesting than being 2nd, 3rd or 10th last! Knowing that I hopped back on my bike after almost hyperventilating from crying so much only 20km in made me proud.

Experiencing the whole event in one way or another was awesome and something I had wanted to do. As one friend wisely said later, "Pain is temporary but stories last forever." I kind of liked my story now. :)

I had a lot of help and support from friends and family and I am thankful for each individual one. They gave me my bike and equipment, they fitted tyres and checked my bike, they offered help, they encouraged me all year whenever I mentioned what I was trying to attempt, and they lifted me up after the ride to make me feel on top of the world. Friends and family helped me along the way just as the sag wagon physically helped me along my journey to the Gold Coast. ;)

Without measuring the actuals at the time I can’t be sure, but I studied and measured the map and I think I completed about 44km on the day, which beat my personal previous 42.5km record by a mere 1.5km. :) I learnt a lot throughout this process, about myself, cycling, training, goals...so much more.

But the main thing I learnt was about accomplishment. It’s not about ‘beating’ others. It’s about trying to achieve your own personal goals and mini goals. It’s about learning. It’s about allowing yourself to be flexible with your own goals. It’s about overcoming plaguing self doubts and learning to believe in yourself. It’s about allowing yourself to be proud of your achievements, no matter how small. It’s about trying. It’s about courage. It’s about the process as much as the end goal. And it’s about dusting yourself off when you fall, and to keep on going.

As Maya Angelou quoted: “Courage allows the successful woman to fail- and learn powerful lessons- from the failure- so that in the end, she didn't fail at all.”

My personal rewritten Goal #25 for 2010: “Show up and do as much as I can”, was done. :)

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Finding my glass slipper

I've been thinking a lot lately and have been trying to gather my thoughts into some sort of logical sense.  It's easier written than done, trust me.  I've had a bad few days, very dark and very...not nice.

I'm not going to go into it, there's no point.  What I do want to talk about though is how it's made me realise something.

A friend of mine said to me today that "Life is beautiful".  It's true, I know that.  But it's hard to truly believe that when you're stuck in a rut in your glad rags because nothing else fits...

I feel like I've been very blessed, been given opportunities, yet haven't REALLY grabbed life by it's horns.  I feel like I'm being left behind.  And it's hard to cope with that when you know it's your own doing.  No-one else to blame...that's tough! :)

I've been reading a lot of quotes and stories lately that have really spoken to me.  And the more I ponder, the more I realise what I want.  One of the quotes I read was:

"A year from now, you'll wish that you started today."

Now fortunately I have already started, but I think this is still so true.  It's so easy to give up when things get overwhelming.  It can be more 'comfortable' to revert to past habits and secret penchants.  It's so easy to fall off the wagon, or your 'pumpkin coach' and to stay off as the coach wheels keep turning.  The longer you're off though, the harder it is to get back on.

Sorry to be quoting and using anagrams a lot tonight (!) but another thing I read was: 

"Losing weight is hard,
maintaining weight is hard,
staying fat is hard;

SO true.

I admit, over the last week I've been really envious of a few people from a weight perspective.  Some have made it to their goals or are close to, others have seemingly always been at their goal weight and from the outside seem to have what I crave.  I've had a week of being down on myself and so envious that they are already there.

I read a book years ago that taught me some of the best lessons in life.  One of the things it taught me was that envy is not a bad emotion.  It's a great one, as it shows you what you really want!  I'm envious of healthy, thin friends who have worked hard and have lost a stack of weight?  Great!  That's what I obviously really, on the inside want.  So go and do it too!

I've been panicking slightly lately, from a time point of view.  I feel like I'm hanging from my pumpkin coach, barely holding on and screaming, wanting to catch up to all of the other pumpkin coaches.  But do you know what?  This is my race.  I'm proud of my friends and others for reaching their goals, but they have different journies.

I have the tools that I need in 12WBT and the passion that I need inside myself.  Even if sometimes I bury it away.  I said in my Week 6 video that Mish is like my fairy godmother and she really is.  I am so thankful as this whole experience is so life changing.  When you're on a journey that you know will work, it's kind of an amazing feeling. :)

I feel like I've been at a fireworks display over the past few months, I've had that many lightbulbs explode!  And they continue to go off.  This whole program isn't like ones I've tried before.  The mindset aspect is phenomenal and ever changing.
The only pumpkin coach I need to be concerned about it my own.  I'll make it to my ball, when I will dazzle and it will be my turn to shine.  It's a sweaty, hard, up and down and back to front and upside down with a twist ride to get there, but I'll appreciate it even more when I'm there.  I'm doing this for my life and for my happily ever after.  Life is raw, and yes, thank you to my friend for the reminder, life is beautiful.  And that is why I am doing this.

Thursday, 19 July 2012


Hi guys....

This isn't really a weight related post but I feel the strong need to write tonight.  It's ultimately about myself and therefore I guess is connected to my whole journey.

Tomorrow is my last day at my beloved job.  I've worked there 3 times over the last 7 years.  This particular time I've been there for 4 years.  (I'm a contractor, coming and going is the name of the game). :)

I've known I'm leaving for 13 weeks so I've had time to get used to it, and I've surprised myself how well I've dealt with it.  I adore my job and everything about it.  I really feel like I've grown up there.  But over the past 13 weeks I've had a lot going on, and have mainly been focussed on finding a new job.  I've got one that I start next week, and now that it's my last day eve, it's finally starting to hit me that I'm leaving.  I've been so focussed on finding something new so haven't really had time to be upset about leaving.

In the past when I've left jobs that I loved, I've been devastated and haven't coped well at all.  I'm older now, I'm more wise about change and have had more important things happen to me that have relaxed my feelings about everything else.  I guess I've got a much more mature outlook and smarter perspective about things like this, and one of my new mantras is just to roll with the punches....and to enjoy the good times.

I've been very good and have been rolling with the punches over the last few months and coping surprisingly well about this.  But I've enjoyed the good times at work so much (and am still human!) that today/tonight I'm finally getting so down and sad about it.

I've never been good with change until the last couple of years.  But now that the time is here, I'm admitting that I am really sad about this.  Yeah, yeah, I'm spreading my wings blah blah blah ;)  but I'm trying to remind myself of the Marilyn quote below, and also I guess, just to let myself feel the sadness of the change.  Do you know one thing though?  This is probably the hugest emotion that I've felt recently and have not eaten these feelings.  I'm just feeling sad, and letting myself feel it.  I'm sure one day very soon I'll move past this of course.  But for now I just want to enjoy my last day, remind myself that everything will be ok and count myself so lucky that I've had a job that I love and have been so happy at.

Think of me tomorrow... :( xo

“Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together.”
Marilyn Monroe

Friday, 13 July 2012

No more yellow socks

I want to tell you about my yellow socks.

I wore them to work today.  I didn't plan to wear them.  I work in a corporate office.  I wore them with black shoes and semi corporate work gear.  I say semi because I don't have nice corporate clothes that fit me.  If I did, I would have described myself as corporate.  'Semi' is used in the context that I may not have looked smashingly corporate, but I tried as much as I could.  Anyway, I am getting off track. :)

So, I wore these yellow socks today.  Why?  Because I didn't have any clean black socks.  I've been busy, and I haven't washed my black work socks.  (See my previous post, "Controlling an elephant" for more info).  This morning I considered wearing dirty black socks but opted for the clean *bright* yellow socks.  I told myself that no-one would notice.

I believed that until I walked from my car into the office.  This is a photo of them in the picture.  Really Coco, no-one would notice?  They are friggin' fluoro yellow!  My pants don't hang over my shoes that low that they would cover the glaring brightness of the socks!  Yeah, it was a bit obvious.

As a result, I was feeling embarrassed and self conscious all day.  I was having a fat day, ugly day, bad hair day and bad clothes day all at once.  And now I could add 'bad yellow socks day' to that list.  Drop me a message if you don't know what 'fat day' etc. is - it's just an analogy :)

Anyway.  The socks got me thinking.  I was so frustrated at myself for wearing them.  Because I should have had clean, black socks ready to be worn.  I didn't, because I didn't do the work necessary to make this happen.  Ok, the 'work' = 70min. in a washing machine inclusive of putting them in the machine and hanging them out to dry.  Not a biggie.  But I haven't even done that.  I haven't been doing any work lately.  For example, I stripped my bed 3, yes three weeks ago and washed my sheets.  They are still hanging on the line - I have been sleeping on a blanket on the bare mattress because I haven't put them back on my bed yet.  Seriously!  This is how out of control I have let my life get.

You know that to do list I wrote on my "Controlling an elephant" post?  Well I'm always going to be completely honest here instead of lying.  It's embarrassing, but I have only done about 4 things on that list.  The list was too time consuming in a short space of time to achieve.  I have had 10pm-12am for the last 3 nights to get that stuff done.  Then back up at 6am.  I couldn't do it all in 2 hours.  But do you know what, I didn't even do a little bit in that 2 hours each night.  I got overwhelmed again and freaked out, and did hardly anything.

But I am sick of it.  And this is where the yellow socks come in.  I was so, so annoyed at myself for wearing the yellow socks today, that I realised that I just have to JFDI and wash those damn black socks next time.  And the same with my bed sheets.  And the same with my brothel house.  And the same with my bills and everything else that I've let slip.  But most of all, with my weight.  You know I hate being this weight.  But today was strange.  It was like I finally got sick of it.  Completely over it.  

I'm not sure if this is making sense.  It was like today I realised that I was so annoyed at myself for being this weight still.  It's been about 15 years.  That's a long time.  I've made excuses and have had other things that I've let get in the way.  But today I was just annoyed, and completely sick of it.  This is absolutely not to say that I have been ok with it to date - it's of course, the contrary.  But today I was just so mad!  I don't know why it was today, and I don't think it really matters.  The point is, I am just so OVER being unhappy about my weight.  I'm sick of having to put up with everything that comes hand in hand with being morbidly obese.  I wanted to scream and I feel like, now, I want to just run this huge journey that I'm in the middle of, and race to the finish line of a healthy weight.  Run until I can't stop, and run until I get there once and for all.


And that feels really empowering.

I was so frustrated at the yellow socks and then even moreso when I realised what the yellow socks stood for.  The yellow socks were the bits and pieces in my life that I have let spiral out of control.  I guess I just realised that I haven't put in the hard work (to wash my black socks), so I'm not going to get the reward (of having clean black socks to wear to work).  And as a result, I had to put up with the consequences.  (Of wearing embarrassing fluoro yellow socks).

And that's how I now see my weight issue.  Over the past 15 years, I haven't put in the hard work (good, CONSISTENT nutrition and exercise).  And until I do that, I'm not going to get the reward (of being a healthy weight and all of the benefits that come with that).  And as a result, I'm currently having to put up with the consequences (an incredibly long list of awful stuff).  I am seriously over it.  As much as I need to know the ins and outs of myself, I realise that I actually probably don't need to know it as much as I thought.  I just have to JFDI and run and keep running until I reach the goal post.

The other stuff in my life is purely cosmetic.  It's not as important as my health, but it's getting me down and is affecting my journey so I have to snap into action.  The most important thing here is my health.

I have a few other things I'm pondering at the moment and will post more here soon.  But for now I just wanted to get this analogy off my chest, and to let you know where I am at.  This was a good thing that happened today.  It needed to happen.  And I had some really insightful comments from my beautiful 30+ crew which were flashing light bulbs in themselves.  I'm realising a lot of things this week, namely about control, time management and discipline, and JFDI'ng it.

And of course, about yellow socks. :)

Chat soon...and LOOK OUT WORLD :) x

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Once upon a time a girl decided to feel her emotions. Instead of eating them.

I thought I'd post here my mindset lesson for 12WBT's current weekly challenge.  This describes the biggest lightbulb moment that I've had.  It's been one of my biggest challenges within myself.  This video is a bit of fun, I hope you like it. :)

Monday, 9 July 2012

Controlling an elephant

Hi guys :)  I promised I'd write tonight so here I am :)

Thank you to Dane and Jules for your comments today.  I was feeling a bit down and out this morning (I am surprised I made it out of bed) and Dane commented on a forum post and her words really lifted me up.  And tonight I was sitting at my laptop, quite despondent and not sure what to write, and Jules made me smile with her words too :)  Thanks girls, and thanks everyone for your messages.  One thing that is on my 'list' is to go through these comments properly and respond to them because each one means so much.  It makes it so special that people do read this...I'm not just talking to myself here :)

Okay....so I am feeling really overwhelmed.  I know I need to make a re-commitment tonight.  Why tonight?  Because I promised you (and therefore myself) and because why not tonight?  The quicker I get back on track, the better.  I shouldn't have been off for this long already.

But I made time as promised and sat here for ages, thinking.  I was just feeling really overwhelmed.  I have let everything spiral so far out of control that I don't know where to start.  And it got me thinking of that saying:

"How do you eat an elephant?
One bite at a time."

It's so true.  How am I going to do EVERYTHING if I look at EVERYTHING and freak out and therefore do NOTHING?  If I do SOMETHING then I am on my way to getting through EVERYTHING.  Right?

So...my plan is:

Monday (tonight):
  • Recommit to my commitment and regain CONTROL of my life
Tuesday (tomorrow):
  • Re-read my commitment: http://cocogirlbutter.blogspot.com.au/p/cocos-commitment.html
    Re-read my list of 100 reasons why I want to lose weight: http://cocogirlbutter.blogspot.com.au/2012/05/100-reasons-why-i-want-to-lose-weight.html
  • Number crunch - reassess my number goals compared to where I am
  • Fix up my training schedule - get it up to date and plan out the next 2 weeks of training
  • Plan my next week's meals and order groceries
  • Update my diary - this will make me feel so much better.  I am usually obsessed with my Calendar but lately haven't been updating it at all.  So I will update all appointments, and then red flag days, shopping days, 12WBT related things eg. Mish's next live chat, and of course training as mentioned above.
  • Update my To Do list.  This is usually my big thing every day.  Every day I usually check it obsessively - it has all of the little things that I need to do listed, and mini goals to work up to my big goals.  I use an awesome app on my phone by Appigo called ToDo.  I haven't used it in about 11 weeks - no wonder I feel off centre!
  • Reply to all of my SMS's that I haven't answered lately.  My poor friends are very understanding...! :)
  • Email my real estate about 2 items that are broken - this is random and one TINY little thing out of a million things but it's something that I have been meaning to do for weeks and weeks.  It's just one thing that I keep putting off and it's been getting me down.
  • Book in car service (another thing that I have been putting off).
  • Move any of these tasks that I don't get done today to Wednesday as I don't have much time tomorrow- but I will try to get this all done tomorrow.
  • Weigh in and not get upset that I have put on weight (because I know I will)
  • Watch all of Mish's latest videos.  I haven't watched the last few properly.  The reason being, I love these videos so much and I don't feel I've deserved to watch them over the last week.  I get so inspired watching them, and don't want to 'waste' them when I'm not being serious (if this makes sense).
  • Clean my house thoroughly and vigorously (as a workout!)
  • Sit down with my finances and sort them out: Part 1
  • Redo my pre-season tasks
  • Sit down with my finances and sort them out: Part 2 (this is really out of control - this will take some time) :)
  • Read my Coco Butter comments and reply
  • Spend time in the 12WBT forums.  I get inspired in there.  And in the 12WBT Facebook groups that I'm a part of. 
  • Write a blog post about my home gym that I made!  Because I've been meaning to.
  • Work on getting my personal emails up to date
  • Get my laptop up to date - files and photos are everywhere (yes, I'm a bit OCD when it comes to organisation) :)
  • Update my filing at home (paperwork)
  • Finish getting my personal emails up to date
  • Go on tour (just for the weekend) for my play and have FUN!
  • Have a bath (something I've been meaning to do for well over 3 years - yes I know!  I haven't really had a bathtub at home in that long - I shower), be kind to myself and go to bed early.  (I have a big weekend coming up and will be exhausted on Sunday night).

So there we go :)  There are many more things that I should have listed, but I think that's a good start.  I have another busy week but I will work hard to get these things done, and yes, I will report back here. :)

I'm feeling overwhelmed, but I will feel worse if I continue being run over by my own wagon.  I'm scared because I am so far behind, but I have to get back up there now.  In a years time, this week or two of being off track won't matter.  But if I don't get back onboard now, in a years time it will still matter because I'll be on the same merry-go-round.  I need to get my head back in the right space and I think I need to watch Mish's videos and podcasts - not just the ones I've been saving up, but her old mindset ones too.

My control post is still yet to come, but for now I am just adding the control back into my life.  I need to control my life - no-one else will!  Good news from yesterday/today though: my play opened so that is one thing that is on track now, and I accepted a new job out of some offers I had.  I start in 2 weeks after I finish my current one.  So that major stress will be off my shoulders.  Come to think of it, I started getting off track with everything other than my health as soon as I found out about it (my job finishing).  I think that has been a bigger cause of stress than I realised.

Anyway I am blabbing now - the short of it is, I have a new job and am sorted in that respect.  Now to sort myself. :)

I'm going to post this now as I promised it would be Monday night and it's 11:54pm and I'm a woman of my word! ;)

Thanks for listening guys.  I'll keep my plan updated and I will keep you updated.

Love Coco :) xo

Saturday, 7 July 2012

Being gut wrenchingly honest...

Ok.  Time to be gut wrenchingly honest.  This is a term Mish used in one of the Round 2 pre-season videos.  Gut wrenchingly honest.  I usually am, with everything.  I have a tendency to wear my heart on my sleeve and open up to people a lot.  But this is something that I haven't been honest with, even to myself.

I've been off track for a few days.  And that's just with my nutrition.  It's been longer with training.

I have no idea how but I still lost 2.6kg this week - it's completely undeserved - I think it was the hard work I put into the week before.  Also on a side note, I got an email from Mish saying that I'm in the Top 15% of transformations so far! :)  I am so excited about this.


I didn't want to admit this, because I had a vague feeling that I need to be upbeat and on track and perfect (there you go, the ultimate word!)  This challenge is the life turn around for me that I needed.  So how can I first fail to carry on, then fail to admit it?

The start of the 'fall' is a bit hazy.  I've been super-stressed lately.  I've been looking for a new job as my current contract is ending so I've been having interviews and feeling completely unsettled.  I'm single, I rent, I have no savings and a monument of debt so I need to have that job security to survive.  My play that I'm producing and directing (and wrote and am acting in!) opens tomorrow: the week before opening is always crazy - I'm working or organising my play from 6am-12am each day.  My house is a brothel and it's doing my head in as I'm usually a neat-freak.  My correspondence/paperwork/emails/messages/finances are out of control.  A young girl in my care had a car accident leaving my house the other day but is ok and it gave me quite a scare.  I ended up in hospital myself after I got home from being there with her as a pre-caution for my PE's (see "Who is Coco Girl?") for a coincidental knock to the head I received.  (I'm ok).  And that's just this week.

But do you know what?  Every single thing I listed just there is an excuse.  Maybe not the potential excuses I preempted in pre-season, but they're all excuses.  Even last night, I was telling myself that it's ok that I'm eating complete crap and not training, because this week has been out of the ordinary full on, and I will get back into it.  ('Editors note': ummm, when?)

It's only by writing this post (my gosh writing is therapeutic!) :)  as I write it all out that I realise some cold, hard facts:
  • These happenings are all excuses - they should have no bearing on my nutrition and training.  What Coco, because you haven't paid your phone bill yet, it means you can eat an Aero Bar??  Seriously?
  • I was lying to myself that this is ok "because I'm having a bad week".
  • Crazy weeks like this always happen, to different extents.  What, I can only eat well and train when things are going peachy perfect in the sunlight with rainbows?  Ummm, when are things perfect?
  • This all comes down to two things.  CONTROL and PLANNING.
The control factor has got me thinking.  I'll write another post on that soon.  But right now, I need to consider PLANNING.

Apart from simply allowing myself to go off track, the reason I haven't been on track, is simply down to poor planning.  I confess, I haven't been doing my planning.  *hangs head*.  There you have it.  It is so important!  It's vital for success!  I've let life get in the way.  I realise that when things get hectic, as they often do, you do have hope of making good choices if you have planned.

I haven't planned.

Also, this week has made me realise how much bingeing is a comfortable 'part' of me.  It's not some sort of fault that you can just dust away into the rubbish bin forever (well, not easily anyway).  It's a huge dirty habit that lurks and can reappear as soon as you move your eyes off the goal post for one second.

So.  My commitment to you, is that by Monday night, I will report back here with my updated plan of attack.  I will do the following:

MAKE THE TIME.  Not freak out at how far behind I am.  Sit down with paper and pen (okay, laptop and mouse!) and PLAN everything that I usually do.  My diary - meals - training - grocery shopping - red flag days - do my numbers - reassess - look at where I am - re-focus and re-plan.  My life is out of control right now and it makes me feel sick.  But if I PLAN (and of course DO), I can pull myself out of this little ditch I let myself fall into.

I will be accountable to you, my readers and my 12WBT family.  Watch this space by Monday night and I will re-commit by having re-focussed on my plan, and having updated my goals.  The plan works.  If you follow it.

I'm embarrassed to admit that I've let myself fall.  But I'm taking ownership, changing my ways and being gut wrenchingly honest...with you, and with myself.

Have a great weekend :) x    

Monday, 2 July 2012


I've been struggling with something over the last day or two.  It's so minor it's hardly worth mentioning, but it's really bothering me so I wanted to write about it.

One of my male friends who I adore called another friend of mine "cute".  He didn't just say that she was cute, he said that she was and that I wasn't.

I know it sounds harsh but it wasn't in a mean context.  We were talking about something specific that we do.  And in doing that thing, he said that we were different - and that she was cute, and that I was funny but not cute.  I have to reiterate that he wasn't saying that to be mean, but I of course took it to heart and have dwelled on it ever since.  Of course ;)

I think it's because I realised that that is one thing that I have never been but I want to be.  Ok, maybe I have to admit that I'm past it - I'm 31! :)  I don't mean baby ga-ga cute, just cute.  I take that word as in pretty, gorgeous etc.  I realised that I don't think I've ever been called cute.  He also called her little.  That word got to me.  How can anyone so big and lanky be called little and cute?

It's not a biggie in the grand scheme of things but it's played on my mind.  It made me feel deflated and sad, and then today I just felt a resolve of "I am going to train like a nut until I can be called little.  And cute."

It's just a 4 letter word but it means so much, especially when you're not called it.  Hopefully one day someone will call me cute. :)