Tuesday, 16 July 2013

My Tour de Fat

People that read this blog or follow it will be aware that I have a love for cycling.  In fact it is my preferred form of exercise now and I look for any opportunity to get out on my beloved bike that I can get.  So obviously with the bike race on in France at the moment, it is a perfect analogy for where I am currently finding myself.

The Tour de France is a 3 week bike race taking in 3404kms.  If anything this is one huge and extremely tiring journey.  A lot like my own journey over the last 12 months.  If you have ever watched any of the tour you are aware that there are multiple stages that involve the riders climbing the Alps and the Pyrenees.  A number of these stages have multiple ascents in any given stage and also many rapid descents, making for interesting viewing and many incidents.  So what on earth does this have to do with me, my weight loss journey and associated struggles and high points? 

Over the last 14 months I have experienced many ups and nearly as many downs.  This journey has not been smooth sailing at any point, but the road has been eventful and enjoyable but more importantly it has taught me a lot of lessons about myself.  This is the biggest thing for me and at the moment I am learning a great deal about where I am, where I should be and what is in my way at the moment and preventing me from being where I am and my end goal.

The last few months have not been pretty.  Right now I feel like the poor fellow that started out with the rest of the peleton in good spirits and as we approached the start of a huge climb has been quickly dropped off the back and struggling to keep in touch with the others.  All of us started the round with plans to reach the summit and achieve our goals.  Each of us had a plan as to what we were going to do to achieve these goals and how we were going to implement it.  For a lot of people this has happened as set out, for others like myself, we have not been able to stick to the plan. 
I have in fact gone backwards this last 8-10 weeks.  Yes I have put on weight, not proud to admit it, but that is what happens when you drop the ball.  No excuses am I offering up.  I can’t blame flat tyres or broken chains.  I can’t blame my team mates for leaving me behind and not helping to drag me up the mountain, this is all down to me not pulling my weight (literally) up the summit and tackling my own demons.  For me this round has felt like I have been climbing my own Alpe-d’Huez. 

For this I have no one to blame and it is down to my own mindset, lack of planning and laziness.  I have been slack in all aspects of my life that ensured I was getting fitter, healthier and smaller for many months.  I have failed to log into the 12WBT to track progress for a few weeks, I have not read anything in the forums and I have generally shut myself off from everything including not blogging as regularly as I would normally have done.  Reflecting back on this and looking at where I am now, it is very disappointing.  I have been maintaining my training for my half marathon up until the last week or so when I have become ill.  This is something that I am happy about but I could still have done more.

So looking at the last 8-10 weeks, what can I take out of this?  On the positive side of it, I am aware of what I am doing wrong.  I have decided that it stops now and I get back to where I was.  Nutrition is key here.  If I nail that the other areas of my life will be more inclined to fall back into line.  Just like each and every cyclist that gets left behind in any stage and struggles to the top of the mountain, they know that the next day brings a new start and a new chance.  I may not have made the top of the mountain in the lead, but I am still going to work my backside off to get there at my own pace, slowly pedalling on my own journey not trying to keep up with the yellow jersey or anyone else that may be a bit quicker than me.

I am also proud that whilst I have relaxed far too much on the food and alcohol side of things, I have still been working towards a fitness goal.  A little counter-productive in the grand scheme of things but in the past I would have simply jumped off the bike and taken a taxi to the top of the mountain.  This time I am sticking it out and still exercising.  I have goals to achieve in the coming months and this is important to me to ensure they are achieved. 
I am determined that I will get my head back in a good space, concentrate on getting nutrition and health in check as well as water intake.  Cut out all the little bits of crap that have been entering my diet and get back to training.   I can and will get back to the 100kg mark and achieve my goal, hopefully before Christmas.  I am in control of my own path/destiny/fate, whatever you want to call it in my efforts to lose my weight, get fitter and achieve what I want to achieve.  I WILL not blame anyone else for taking me down the wrong path.  I make my own choices and if I am not strong enough to say no to the wine or the chips then I need to accept that and own it.  I will say NO from now on and I will take back control.

Being the winner of the Maillot Jaune will never be something that I will have to worry about, but I am going to be more than happy to know that I have not given up on my personal Tour de Fat.  I will be a winner, in fact I already am.  It is a longer, harder road to travel when on a weight loss journey than a 3 week ride across the French countryside.  I am battling more mental and physical demons each day than these guys (and I know they have plenty each day) but many of mine are deep rooted and ingrained in me over many years.  Hard habits to break down when you have been doing them for some time, but I will just keep pedalling and moving forward knowing that I will win this battle and I am going to be the person I want to be.

A large chunk of that person I want to be is a good example to my children.  This is slowly happening and will improve as time goes on and I can master what I need to improve my healthy lifestyle.  Part of that is also showing them that we need to also give back to others in our community.  They are aware that I am taking on a huge challenge this year with trying to raise $15K for cancer research and take part in 6 rides of 200km each.  I will do this and I have in fact raised $8K so far, but still need to work hard to raise the balance.

Anyone wishing to help out can do so on the below links.  If you see a ride has raised $2500 please move on to the next ride.


1 comment:

  1. Mate, you and me both, I have to get back in the mindset for sure. As of today I am now weighing a wee bit over what I started the round as. Gaaaaaah!!! I have let a few bad habits creep in and knowmfrommthat I need to be ever vigilant, I am going to be battling this my whole life.

    So keep checking in and I will always be here reading it. Okay.