Week 4: Struggle + Triumph

Week 4: my first real teeter-totter. Here’s a recap:

  • Struggle – The Great Carb Challenge: my nutrition plan was intentionally altered this week to reduce my carbohydrates temporarily, and boy, did I feel it. If you’ve ever done a low-carb diet, you’ll know how hard it is to maintain energy and focus. I felt foggy, lackluster and just not quite my chipper self. I felt the drain in every aspect of my daily activities: from concentrating on work to scraping up every ounce of motivation to train. And thank the Lord for my coach – she was pivotal in my ability to maintain my focus. She told me upfront WHY I was doing this and WHAT it was going to do to my body and my mind. She also warned, “you’ll feel squishy.” And sure enough, that’s exactly what happened by week’s end. Now that my body and muscular awareness is hyper-sensitized, the feeling of “flat” muscles was quite a psychological challenge. It was as if my brain had been deceived into thinking I was getting smaller, losing hard-earned lean mass. So on top of feeling deprived of energy, I agonized over not feeling my best athletically. What was only 5 days of whispering small words of encouragement to myself proved to be my toughest battle yet.
  • Triumph – The Value of Struggle: Now on the other end of the tunnel (hello, brown rice!), I look back on last week like a badge of honor. It was brutal. It demanded heaps of discipline. And I did it. Beyond being proud of my mini feat, I am happy as hell that I went through it, endured the doubt, danced  around what I thought were my thresholds of willpower and freaking did it anyway. There’s a certain value in letting yourself experience struggle. It was nearly impossible for me to acknowledge this during the process, of course, but retrospectively I have no doubt that I needed that. I needed to prove to myself, even on a teeny weenie low carb scale, that I could do more and be more than even my most confident and aspirational goals. And I can’t help but extend this concept to my professional life, marriage, friendships, family life, etc. Moments of anticipated failure knock at my door every day. I feel a bit more inclined now to answer that door, instead of pretending no one’s home (oh yea, home alone reference y’all.).
  • Triumph – “Til [Cake] Do You Part”: Had the most joyful celebration this weekend with 2 friends from college that got married back home. I’ll admit, I was a bit uneasy knowing I’d have to put my big girl game face on: no cake, no booze, no cheats. Period. To help, I treated myself to a rocking dress (sweeeeeet selfie!), kept some yummy flavors of gum in my clutch (You: “Gum?! Haha – that sucks!”) and made a conscious effort to distract myself by focusing on the most important part of weddings: LOVE! Cheesy, I know, but I really, really enjoyed this wedding. Maybe it was because the bride and groom were seriously adorable and their love radiated like sunshine. Or maybe my attention to detail enhanced my ability to focus on this a bit more than usual. Who knows.  Either way, the nuptials were a triumph both from the perspective of sticking to my nutritional guns and, more importantly, in my mindfulness of the love, friendship, joy and laughter shared. Cheers to that!

Alright kids, yesterday was the 2 months out date! Getting so much closer! Until next week…