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I’m exercising. There, I’ve said it. I am on day 47 of exercising, and part of the reason I started this healthy eating challenge for myself is because I went through the first 30 days of exercise and lost next to nothing.

The scale is not my friend, because honestly – I don’t understand it, and I get a lot of conflicting messages about weight, which is not even to mention my own tension with body acceptance and positive body image. A weight trainer asked me a couple weeks ago, “Why are you so resistant to training, it will help you reach your goals much faster?” Admittedly, this was after she had input all my body measurements into a computer, which created an avatar of me in my current state. I looked at the avatar and thought, “Alright.” Then the computer created an avatar of my ideal body weight. She gestured to the two pictures and said, “That image on the left looks a lot better, I think.” I started to feel anxiety creeping up the back of my neck as I now needed to answer why I don’t employ a personal trainer. Well, how do I say it? This is what actually came out (in all its flaws):

“I feel as though I can accept you, you are a nice person as far as I can tell, and you are healthy and strong and that is wonderful. You dedicate your life to helping other reach fitness goals, which I also admire, but can you admire in me that I think the avatar on the right (the one that is supposed to represent me as I am) is just fine?” You then can hear her back pedalling, “well, yes – but not healthy.” What makes reality-avatar (what an oxymoron!) not healthy? Then…out it came: “your body fat percentage according to the computer suggests that you’re obese.”

Well…there it is. This is why I cannot engage a personal trainer. I really feel that this real woman standing in front of me, just cannot see me. I am standing before her, literally and in reality, CLEARLY not obese (or I am seriously deluded about what exactly obesity is) and yet she’s glued to those numbers on the screen. It’s the power of the avatar to produce an individual as the sum total of their data. I had to leave. I was kind of disgusted and I’ve been needing to get that off my chest.

So. I exercise. I’ve been doing 12 minutes a day with 30 day a program called Catching Fire. The results are occurring now that I’ve added careful food choices and they are happening really quickly. My goals are pretty simple: be able to play with my kids, not crash on weekends, and ultimately be able to use my body to balance on a windy day and pull in the ropes on the sailboat. That’s it. My results have come to me, not in numbers on the scale (although I do keep track of them to keep my challenge real), but satisfaction has come in my ability to make it through a day and have reserve energy. My mood has improved in spite of sleep deprivation, and the really big indicators for me: I can lift my daughter up and down, up and down a hundred times a day as she demands and still scale the stairs multiple times a day without a thought, I can go for a mini run and still feel good and not as though I have internal bleeding in my chest, and best of all – my partner has started going to the gym everyday as well to increase his cardio. I know it’s really working when someone near you joins in…and I feel as though we’re trying as best we can to put something healthy in our lives. Will it stick?

Honestly? It never does totally, but what has stuck over the years is that we always come back to it. Right now we’re in it and that’s good enough.

Breakfast: Same as yesterday’s recipeday 17 of 30 Healthy Food Challenge

I’m really sold on refrigerator oatmeal right now, it’s something about the chewy chia seeds and greek yogurt, then a blast of fruit. I just love it.

1 cup Pineapple to top oatmeal

1 cup almond milk

…..

Lunch:

1 cup 9 Bean Soup (recipe included yesterday)

1 hardboiled egg mashed

1 slice whole wheat bread

….

Supper:

We had supper in a mall yesterday due to a bunch of returns I needed to make. Chicken Shawarma is probably not the best I could have done, but something about it was also singing its siren song – so I crashed my mouth into it with a passion never before seen in a food court.

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