So I don’t look like a Ballerina but I can deadlift my body weight!

I am falling in love with my body. I feel like a rejuvenated woman, in the early stages of a blossoming romance. It’s new, it’s extremely different and I feel fantastic.

I bet your thinking I must have lost 10 kilograms!

No. Recently I haven’t lost any weight, and that annoying 5 kilograms that is keeping me from my dream goal of 55 kilograms, still refuses to go away. To tell you the truth I think I am stuck with that for life and I don’t care.

Dearest stubborn five kilos welcome to my body, feel free to continue making your self-comfortable!

It no longer pains me to share that I am a 5ft1 female who weighs 60 kilograms.   You can turn your noes up at that; I won’t be offended because do you know what this means?

I am short, strong and sexy.

My weight struggles are no big secrete, I enjoy sharing them because I think people can learn from them. No, I have never been anorexic because, like most Italians I love food way too much. Food has always been my comfort. Some people don’t eat when they are stressed. Me? I eat when stressed. Being constantly stressed about not being thin meant I was constantly eating because eating made me feel better. However Once I was done eating, the guilt set it, I would vow to never eat again only to find that the stress would overwhelm me and I would just end up eating yet again.

Wow that hurt my brain just trying to explain it. A catch 22 and a complete mind jumble!

Doctors would have diagnosed me as a binge eater. This eventually rolled into; number one advocator for taking laxatives, because honestly who actually enjoys sticking their fingers down their throats not to mention the taste of acid shooting up their oesophagus.

Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, Sure Slim, Atkins, South Beach, low carb, no carb, lemon detox drink, juices, special soup diet, you name it I have probably tried…and in between when they weren’t working, my drug of choice…laxatives.

Truth is, none of them worked. Sure I lost weight, but the beautiful Ballerina never once looked back at me in the mirror and my mind was still left angry!

I was never badly over weight and if people had of just left me to be a child and develop naturally things may have been okay. Instead I was constantly told what image was right, the prima Bellarine, and what was wrong, me. What I could eat, whole heap of carrots and celery sticks, and what I couldn’t: bread, pasta, chocolate, ice – cream, anything not in the heath and food isle!

To love food was my curse. You try telling an Italian to defy their natural instincts…well your just doomed from the start!

Naturally I am not a very big eater but when you starve your body or like when you tell a child you can’t have something they really want, when no one was looking I overindulged. My relationship with food developed a very negative connotation.

When I finally gave up trying to be what I was told to be and what I had believed to be perfect and began exploring different avenues, I started to formulate my own ideas, beliefs and goals.

Firstly, my body structure is not one of a ballerina. I have broad shoulders that I spent years defending; no I am not a swimmer. Mind you I used to hate it but now I just wear it as a compliment. My childbearing hips have a little extra something special from my Italian heritage; they are solid and round. These physical feature I cannot change this no matter how hard I try.

So what do I do now?

I take what I have, work with it and just make it better!

Knowing I love food means I have to work hard to enjoy it but working hard gives me that power to get what I want. Those little no no’s like chocolate, ice-cream, bread or pizza become my rewards and when I stop making them negatives sometimes I realise I don’t even need them, but you have to pleasure your sense every now and then!

Exploring ways to be fit and push myself has led me to sports and activities I would have never tried. I now enjoy going for runs, weight lifting, boxing, kettle bell workouts, cycling, last week my partner brought me roller blades! These activities are not chores but things I enjoy and choose to do, on my own or with friends.

Yes some may say I am big and yes sometimes I can’t wear certain tops because my shoulders are to broad, or certain pants because my thighs are thick but maybe that designer didn’t design those items with my body structure in mind and that’s okay.

When I first met my partner, his pick up line was “how much do you squat?” I was mortified, I immediately thought he was making fun of my thunder thighs. Unknown to me he was actually paying me a compliment! Today if I was asked, I would just turn around and say proudly 50kg (I am very happy to announce that this was my new record just made today!)

I am stronger than I have ever been both physically and mentally and that’s because I am interested in being fit and healthy and the only way to do that is with the right frame of mind.

So I know I will never look like a Ballerina, its not physically possible and I am just not made that way!

There is no point it trying to obtain unrealistic goals.

However I can and do deadlift my own bodyweight, an achievement that makes me proud of my body and what I can do!

Next goal is to be able to do a chin up.

Don’t let your surrounds determine what is right for you. Starting making choices that make you happy.

 

For the love of spring.

Nothing beats the smell of spring, there is a certain freshness to it that you got to love. The air seems clean and the sun is just that perfect combination of hot but not so hot that I can fry a slice of bacon on myself.

As September ticks over to October a refreshed, happier and warmer Melbournian emerges onto the streets. Travelers, no longer robots racing against time, stop every now and then to take in the glorious surroundings. With the knowledge that summer is blossoming, this place we call home feels cosy once again.

It’s also that wonderful time of the year where we realise we spent way too much time in winter, indoors sipping red wine with the ladies! Those extra servings of warm apple pie have now become extra inches on our hips and even though we didn’t spend the whole of winter curled up under the covers, drinking hot chocolate and skipping boot camp, we know there is still work to be done to get back to that summer lovin’ beach body we had.

With this in mind and the lovely spring air it’s time to brush the dust of my helmet and join my boy for a cycling adventure around the west: Adventures with Sara & Jelly.

Our adventure itineraries are almost always centered around food; a local favourite, a new talk of the town, a hidden gem or anything within a 1 km radius!

Our motto: work hard, train hard and eat hard, its makes us the perfect pair.

Today’s destination: Yarraville Farmers Market.

The journey there is a breeze. We are at one with the cars, pushing up & speeding down the hills, conquering each obstacle I get thrown. Keeping up with my cycling machine, I can feel the efforts of the last two weeks of my “shake away the winter blues” training program starting to work.

A well rewarded rest and replenish and with a few extra calories to burn now we set off once again.

Adventures of Sara & JellyHis & Hers

Our route ahead: the banks of the Maribyrnong River

It only takes minutes for the regret to sink in.

My legs are trembling beneath me.

Perhaps I should have taken a slightly less cocky approach to the ride there.

On the other hand…

Jelly is in full steam; he reaches the river and his home, zipping around the banks like Cadel Evans on his last leg of his Tour De France Triumph. Before i can shout out to him to go on ahead, our paths have already been lost.

Determined to catch a glimpse of him, I power on ahead, but my tired, angry legs are too slow.

Images of the monstrous climb up ahead haunt me and just as I am about to admit defeat, I see Jelly shoot out of the corner…He’s come back to rescue me, hopefully with a portable stretcher strapped to his back.

Unfortunately all he has to offer is some dear words of encouragement, which I humbly accept and precede onwards to my inevitable fate.

Determination and inner strength push me through the next twenty minutes. Mind over matter, one pedal stroke at a time and as home draws near, my breath gets calm.

With the sight of success my body surrenders…

On this beautiful spring afternoon, I am the winner.

Woman VS Machine

photoIt’s 8:30pm and I have just arrived home from a long busy day at work. The day’s journey has required the use of two hats, my corporate business top hot and my creative and shiny boiler hat.

Multiple hurdles have some what been successfully over come, the race against Melbourne city traffic won, and an audition for a Berlin art director accomplished and as the evening is coming to a conclusion I have just enough time to sneak in a quick run before crawling into bed for a little rest, relaxation and energy replenishment.

Now I am not a huge lover of treadmills, I much prefer the excitement and spontaneity of running outdoors however the combination of evening spring time chill and dark western suburban streets make the indoor running machine a friendlier alternative tonight… So I thought.

Fifteen minutes into my run I am feeling fantastic, my body feels light, my mind seems to believe that it can go forever and I decided pick up the pace. Had I been running out doors the simple task of going faster would just require my brain sending the signal and my body reacting but with modern technology being what it is the act of going faster on my running mechanism required press a button multiple times until I reached my next level of “super woman, I can achieve anything today,” intensity.

What happened next was not really what I had hoped my desired outcome of goal kicking greatness would be.

Firstly, I had to look down to find the correct button on the high tech touch pad in front of me. Then I had to break my arm and leg coordination to press the button for what seemed like forever to get the speed I wanted to challenge myself to. This led to me tripping over my feet, falling over myself, knees thumping onto the belt, quickly followed by my stomach and then chin, flinging me backwards in a ridiculous, all to quick manner.

Within that chaos of madness, in that few seconds of slow motion where you see your life flash before you, I remembered my mothers porcelain vase collection positioned beautifully only a few feet behind the machine. Not wanting my body to be flung into it and not wanting to deal with at outraged mother, I quickly grabbed onto the edge of the treadmill just in the nick of time, holding on for dear life, trying to quickly decipher my next move. Screaming in agony as my shoulder was burning beneath the speeding belt I army rolled over the top the apparatus and onto the freedom of cold tiles.

As I caught my breath I looked down at the layer of skin that had been oh so beautiful grazed of my shoulder and shivered at the burning sensation running through me I thought to myself perhaps the safety clip is not such a silly addition to the machine after all!

Unfortunately, in life we must accept that sometimes we are not unbeatable and defeat is capable in all of us not mater how great we are.