How did you do it? What’s the secret? And of course you’ve given up on so much, do you even have a life?
So yes, I have lost weight. A fair amount too. Yes, I spend plenty of time in the gym, and some of my daily routines do revolve around food. But I still have a life. I study. I have friends. I go out. I treasure my candy-Saturday and if I have to, then yes, I eat what I’m served. From January and until now, I have lost 13 kg, lowered my body fat and gained muscle. Not too mention my skin has changed, I have more energy and I feel happier in general. My workout routine has not been altered much, but my lifestyle and way of eating has.
I have torn three ligaments since I came to Melbourne (both ankles and my lower back, tip; don’t try to be cool in the gym and don’t walk down stairs when drunk), I have a 2 x operated left knee not interested in co-operating, I have hypermobile joints, and for the past 4 months I have been unfortunate enough to suffer the annoyance and pain of inflamed shoulders. Being the slightly grumpy, but oh so compelling Norwegian that I am, I have managed to build some sort of a support system and I am lucky enough to argue with both my physio, my dad and the poor poor gym instructors every time I am in pain, but refuse to not work out. So what have I learnt? Work around it. There is always a solution.
Not only am I banned from running outside, I can’t bench press, my don’t-even-think-about-it-list of shoulder exercises is longer than the approved list, normal squats are out of the question – as are lunges and leg extensions, normal ab-crunches hurt and I am stuck with rehab exercises for an eternity. But that’s no excuse, is it? If it is important, you will find a way, and if it is not important – then, well, you will find an excuse.
If you can’t run, you can walk. If you have a nazi physio who argues with your definition of complete rest, you can still eat the right food. And pull through your elastic band rehab exercises. And yes, the humble Marita also admits that there is no use in overdoing things. Know your limits. Do it the way it works for YOU. I have been fortunate enough to get a lot of help, and I now know what I can do – and what I can’t. I don’t own a scale, I don’t do my own measurements and I don’t count calories. Having somebody being responsible for that (not the calorie part, counting calories is out of the question) has allowed me to not go crazy and not obsess too much. And they sure let you know once you’ve gone too far – I got yelled at for my bodyfat being too low, and I am trying to put on some more muscle. But remember, even though you have a PT making your gym program or a nutritionist telling you what to eat, you’re the one moving your body and you’re the one preparing your food.
Maybe doing some kind of physical activity nine times a week sounds obsessive and crazy, maybe buying more fruit and vegetables than you can carry looks weird, maybe choosing an apple with cinnamon and peanut butter when other choose chips is found silly, but that is the way I have chosen to live my life. A chocolate bar may only be 100 calories, but so is a banana, and I’d rather eat the calories packed with good things for my body. That one hour I spend in the gym in the morning equals 4% of my day, planning my meals is fun – and by all means, I still live a very happy and social life. And I get an excuse to buy and wear the most colorful workout clothes.