Week Two in Review

Week Two was a weird week; firstly, it feels like I just blinked and now it’s over. I think between the week starting on Monday, weigh-in on Wednesday, new plans on Thursday, Food Photo Friday, SSS on Saturday and rest day on Sunday there is always something happening and something to look forward to (sorry Tuesday, I guess you’re a bit boring). Also, this week something in the air changed, last week I was pumped, nervous, anxious, unsure about whether I could get through 6 days of exercising and unsure about how my 12WBT experience would play out. This week, well… I had already done it. I had already survived six workouts and seven days of eating from the meal plan, what was there to be scared about? It was still hard, it was still tiring, but it felt sort of normal, “Work out time? Let’s get going.”

My big positives for the week:

  • I’ve recently mentioned my love for baked beans and I’m still pretty happy that I get to eat them so often. Baked beans on toast with baby spinach has probably been my favourite 12WBT breakfast so far.
  • I lost 2.4kg in the Wednesday weigh-in this week, bringing my weight down to 67.4!!! As a result, I have changed my goal weight to 60kg and I have finally been able to decide on my mini-milestones which I will talk about below.
  • Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday workouts. What can I say? I like cardio.
  • I managed to not injure myself this week, always a plus.
  • The one thing that I have been craving this week can only be bought from the corner store on the far side of my uni campus; positioning win.
  • I’m still not sure if this is all in my head or not but I’ve found that I’ve needed my glasses less this week. I was only prescribed glasses a couple of months ago; my eyes are misaligned and I was finding it really hard to focus on things, especially text, which was making me really tired and straining my eyes. The other day I decided that I might just leave them off until I felt like I needed to wear them (thinking that would take half an hour or so), before I knew it, it was the end of the day and I hadn’t thought about them. Normally I would start to really struggle to read things on the computer because the words would all start to mush together. It’s weird but there’s a possibility that being fitter/healthier has had an impact on my vision. Interesting to think about.
  • Oh! You will be glad to know that my glutes have settled down and I have been able to resume my usual toilet-sitting gracefulness.

I had a particularly nerdy moment at uni this week that I really want share with you all. I was in my Marketing tute and my teacher was telling us that he had already finished marking our assignments but that we probably wouldn’t get our results until next week. He told us that everyone has passed (always good to hear), and that there were a lot of 5’s, a few 6’s and one 7. We’ve all been here. “I wonder who the over-achiever is that got the 7.” Class continued and at the very end my teacher asked me to stay behind for a minute. I was the one 7. The assignments get cross-marked so it might not be my final score for the assignment but I WAS THE OVER-ACHIEVER WHO GOT THE 7. Eek!

Lastly, my sister takes a lot of photos at family events; I take photos of food, she takes photos of people (and our dog). It’s how we roll. The first photo below is from Mother’s Day this year and the second is from yesterday. Photos will always be a bit different but I think you can really tell a difference in my face – and Mother’s Day was only two weeks ago, right?


965008_10151434515564397_1559476960_o(https://www.facebook.com/laurenlostblog?fref=ts )

In other news:

  • There is an unfortunate side-effect to eating baked beans. I don’t think I need to say it, we all know. I’m not going to blame this just on my baked beans as a few people on the forums have been experiencing the same problem.  I imagine it’s something to do with the fibre/exercise as well, I’m prepared to ride it out.
  • On Thursday I was really weak and fainty during the workout. I got through it all but I felt really odd.
  • This week it was my arms that were sore, they were on fire on Friday. Damn weekly challenge!
  • I slacked off on study a bit this week. Exams are in two weeks Emily!!
  • Some nights after a hot dinner and tea, I just feel a bit fat. It’s okay though, it’s probably good to be reminded that I’m not quite there yet.

This week a few things have fallen into the in-between category:

  • My mood has been improving, I would like to report that  I have not had any hunger/tiredness/12WBT-related bouts of moodiness this week. However, earlier in the week I was a feeling a bit off and might have started a fight with Hugh. Nothing major, we never really fight about anything important but I just ended up getting really upset and I cried harder and longer than I have in a long time. From what I’ve been reading on other people’s blogs/in the forums, I think that this week was emotional for a lot of people, just our bodies trying to figure things out I think. I’m glad to report that since then I have been feeling really good, better than I have for a while. Let’s hope things stay this way.
  • I’ve noticed that my muscles are behaving more this week, as in, when I’m working my abs, my abs hurt, when I’m working my arms, my arms hurt and so on. In addition to this, I think I actually understand wall slides now… and they actually hurt.
  • I have a bit of a love hate relationship with the Core and Flexibility day. I’ve heard a few people saying that it’s the easy day, are you kidding me? Core stuff hurts and all you can do is hang out there, holding yourself up and thinking about the pain. However, I really like the stretching, it hurts about as much as the exercises for me but I love that during the sixty second hold you can actually feel your muscles release. I think it’s a great time to really stop and stretch properly.

Week 2 Challenge: Do 300 Push ups!

Monday: 0
Tuesday: 0
Wednesday: 75
Thursday: 75
Friday: 50
Saturday: 0
Sunday: 100

Total: 300/300

I told you guys last week how much I dislike push ups so this challenge was either just what I needed or just what I didn’t haha. We procrastinated doing them over Monday and Tuesday then I realised that the least painful way to get through them was to, y’know, start already. I wanted to get them done before Sunday so that we could have a proper day off but we were so tired on Saturday that we ended up not doing any at all, and then doing 100 on Sunday. I’m really proud of us for getting through the SSS, even if we did come home, eat and nap afterwards.

I still don’t particularly like push ups but I think that my technique and resistance have improved over the week. My biggest problem is that when I get too low my elbows kind of pop and cause this dull, uncomfortable pain. Has anyone else experienced this?

I will be keeping track of my current Weekly Challenges in my side bar (if applicable), and I will be making a “Weekly Challenges” page soon to keep all of the results in.

Red Flag Days:

Today we had a family lunch which turned out to be a bigger red flag than I had anticipated. My mum is overseas for work so I made sure to get there a bit earlier than usual to help my aunty with chopping/cooking, etc. As the morning progressed I got to see everything slowly coming together and realised, “I can’t really eat most of this.” My family is quite healthy but most things that weren’t salad either had cream, or sauce, or pastry involved. I also realised just how much I normally would have eaten. There would have been a little bit of everything on my plate, plus sauce, plus my sister’s famous rocky road, and cake. Nothing too excessive, but a lot of extra calories.

In the end, I was never going to calorie count everything, I just tried to make the best decisions possible with what was in front of me and go for small portion sizes. I ended up having two types of salad, a piece of quiche and a sausage. I avoided the homemade sausage rolls, potatoes with cheese, deviled eggs and having seconds.

I feel like I should feel guilty about the following, but I don’t, nor do I feel like I need to defend myself but I’m going to anyway. Staying accountable and all that. I shared a piece of mud cake with Hugh, I had about a third. It was a birthday cake, and yes, to some extent it was probably because of the habit of having cake at birthdays but I know that it wasn’t because I needed dessert, it wasn’t because “I have been good, I deserve it,” nothing like that. I wasn’t craving the cake, I wasn’t breaking out in a sweat, I simply said to Hugh, “I would like to have some cake, can we share a piece?”

I know that it’s only two weeks in so it doesn’t fully apply here but I watched Michelle’s mindset video when I got home and she mentioned that eventually we will get to a point where we can be happy to have a piece of pizza with salad as a treat, not a whole pizza and a half. I feel like the cake was sort of along those lines. I didn’t have a whole a whole piece, just a few bites and I wasn’t tempted by other desserts such as the aforementioned rocky road or my cousin’s caramel, macadamia, chocolate slice.

I had a piece of vegemite toast for breakfast and the Beef Fajita with Capsicum & Red Onion without the fajita for dinner. If I went over on calories today it wasn’t by much and I definitely don’t feel like I’ve cheated myself or “fallen off” any bandwagons.

Anyway, there you have it. On we go.

Mini Milestones:

Now that I have changed my goal weight down to 60kg and had a good think about some rewards, my milestones/rewards are as follows:

If I can run non-stop for 1km in the upcoming Mini Milestone week: A massage.
When I reach 63kg (original goal weight): New pair of jeans.
When I reach 60kg (goal weight): Buy a custom digital portrait from one of my favourite artists who has recently started offering them @ http://www.etsy.com/shop/MeganLaraArt
When the 12WBT finishes: A photo shoot with my sister.

That’s it for now, and I’m fairly happy with my little list.

I would like to go to the 12WBT finale party but I’m not yet sure if we will be able to.

Favourite Meals:

I had this part all neatly planned out and then we had those beef fajitas, even without the fajita it was delicious. If you’re into beef and haven’t tried them yet… they are wow. Other than this, Hugh loved the Laksa, though we substituted the seafood for chicken, I thought it was really nice. We did the same with the Cajun Fish Stew which was tasty, hearty and a good portion size, I liked this one more than Hugh did though. Also… baked beans (have I talked about them enough yet?).

My favourite forum topics from Week Two:

  • C’mon people, time to embrace your secret ‘shallow’ reasons for wanting to lose weight
  • WEEK TWO!!! The No Scale weigh in!!!! Add yours here!!!!
  • Old habits

If you want to check them out just go to the forum page on the 12WBT site and type the above titles into the search bar.

Overall it was another good week for me, I hope it was for you too.

My goals for this week:

  • Study!! Exams are two weeks away!
  • 800 step ups for the Week Three Weekly Challenge.

Can you tell me about some of your positives and negatives from Week Two?

How did your Weekly Challenge go?

Any Red Flag days?

Are you eating baked beans?

Let me know!

~ energyandEmily


“Obesity is just a fad”

I was chubby for most of high school. I joined my high school rowing team in grade 11; somehow, a girl I was working with at the time convinced me to join up, I didn’t even really think about it to be honest, I just did it.  I loved it and it was hard work, the most I had ever exercised, but I never really thought about weight loss until I stepped on the scales at the end of the year and realised that I had lost 10kg. I participated in club rowing over off-season for the two years but couldn’t compete at school in grade 12 because I dropped a 20kg plate weight on my big toe (crushed fracture, oh yeah baby). Post high school I went to the gym regularly, I had no idea about what foods to eat but I gave it a good shot and I maintained a fairly low weight for a couple of years out of school. I was lucky that my family eats fairly well.

I’ve almost always beaten myself up about what I eat, I couldn’t have this or that thing without physically feeling disgusting. For the last several years I have played the on and off game with the gym. I would get to a point where I felt really horrible about myself and decide to get back into gym and give it ‘everything’, going 3 or so times a week, starting from 6 months, to maybe another 6 months, to a few months, to a few weeks, basically just going until I felt better about myself and then blowing it off because hey! I feel better… and I can’t be bothered… and I wasn’t changing up my routine so I would get really bored.

Another problem was, I was always confused about exactly what to do to lose/maintain my weight and I was constantly playing mind games with myself. I picked up the MX (free, local newspaper, I think they have them in Sydney and Melbourne as well) the other day on my way home from uni because I saw the words “Obesity is just a fad” taking up half of the front page. It was a very small article in a not entirely credible paper but it said “A new survey shows almost two-thirds of women blame diet and exercise trends for causing Australia’s obesity epidemic.” Obviously it’s a little much to blame obesity entirely on any one thing, not to mention that these “studies” can be seriously flawed, and calling it an “epidemic” has always seemed a little bit much to me anyway. However, I think there is some truth behind that idea though, that diet fads/messages create mass confusion.

Over the course of my life, since even before high school (though I’m not about to go as far back as primary school here, you’ll be glad to know), I have been told varying things to do with weightloss/maintaining weight. At first it’s pretty simple, diet and exercise. Then you start being told not to eat carbs, not to eat baked beans or bananas, to do cardio after weights, the next thing is that you can eat a few, but not too many carbs, then you are eventually told that some people calorie count… “but how is that different to carb counting? I understand carbs better, I’ll just keep doing it that way.”

Then one day you start a shake diet and you lose 5kg and you think it’s great but you still don’t know how to eat properly, and then when you start on the “second phase” of the diet you feel bad for eating sandwiches for lunch because “How can I still lose weight like I have been now that I’m eating carbs?” and you wonder and wonder, constantly, all of the time, “When can I eat bread again without feeling bad about it? When can I eat anything that I want to eat without feeling disgusting (yes, disgusting) and like I’m ruining all of my hard work.” as well as “When can I stop going to the gym? Because I’m bored out of my mind.”

6 months? 1 year? Never? I don’t want to never eat carbs again. I don’t want to do this boring exercise every week for the rest of my life, besides, I’m feeling like I look better anyway.” Not to mention how, by this point, my head was so full of information that I couldn’t start to comprehend.

This is turning out much longer than I had intended but what I’m boiling down to is that I’m loving the 12WBT so far because for once I’m feeling in control, and I know that the girl in the photo at the end of this will not only be smaller but stronger and healthier and one who actually understands how to take care of her body. When can I eat carbs again? Only tomorrow morning. That’s when. I’ve eaten baked beans and bananas about three times each this week. I’m working out 6 days a week and I’m not bored. It hasn’t been a perfect journey so far, I’m not always jumping on clouds or farting rainbows (have I mentioned that I think farting is pretty much the funniest topic ever? I seriously just laughed out loud re-reading this. How immature.), but I feel like I’m on the right track.

I’m a little bit worried about what will happen when I feel “okay” again, but less and less every day because every day I feel a little more like this is a lifestyle change forever, not just for now. I can thank you all for inspiring me as well. I think Michelle was right when she said that this isn’t another fad that will lead you right back to where you started, but I do need to really want this for myself.

Man, that was really long, kudos if you got through it all. I’m actually not really one to dwell on past events (I’m much too busy over-thinking present and future ones) but between the excuses pre-season task and reading other people’s stories it’s just gotten me thinking about what things have been like up to this point regarding my weightloss. I have also been thinking about this whole thing a lot over the last 12 days, picking up newspapers, watching people eating (in a non-creepy way…mostly haha) and realising just how little we are all informed and how hard it is to become informed. I’m not saying the 12WBT is the answer to everyone’s problems but I think it’s the answer to mine, and hopefully yours.

On another note, it is also Food Photo Friday so here are some of my favourite snaps from the week since last Friday:



foodweek2-6939The Sweet Potato and Roast Capsicum Pizza! I can’t believe that I forgot to mention this in our favourite foods for last week. I added cherry tomatoes and mushroom to mine, and mixed the garlic into the ricotta with oregano, salt, pepper and chilli flakes. The pasta sauce was a great replacement for tomato paste too.


foodweek2-6983Studying and Jarrah Frothy Classic hot chocolate (47 calories).

foodweek2-6998-3The Roast Cinnamon Pumpkin and Feta Salad. We swapped the walnuts for pine nuts, and I was a little skeptical because I’m used to salads with at least some sort of dressing, balsamic vinegar or lemon, but we thought it was really nice.

foodweek2-7148The remains of our roast chicken.

foodweek2-7061-2Monday’s Banana Bruschetta.

~ energyandEmily

The Week That Was

Week One is definitely, officially over; I can’t believe it!  I have gotten through six workouts, at least twenty-one calorie-balanced meals and have managed to survive the week relatively unscathed save for a couple of minor injuries involving failed attempts at over-bench jumps. It’s Monday night, Day One of Week Two and I wanted to post a short overview of my first week on the 12WBT, the week that was.

There have been some big positives, including:

  • I’m already noticing improvements in my fitness and I was able to pull some higher numbers/better times as the week progressed.
  • I actually enjoy running and leg-based workouts.
  • I lost 1kg in the Wednesday weigh-in, seeing my weight drop in to the 60’s for the first time in a couple of years (even if it was only by 100g).
  • I have been loving the food, and I have managed to keep hunger-related bouts of moodiness to about two (okay, maybe three or four… should I move this to the negatives column?) occurrences for the week.
  • I have been really enjoying meeting new people around the blogosphere and participating in the forums.
  • Capsicum. I’ve never really been crazy about the crunchy, bitter, little vegetable, and Hugh hates it so we have generally avoided it in the past. Now, for the most part, I’m adding capsicum to my meals where instructed and finding that it really lifts mild flavours and is very satisfying.
  • On Friday I realised that my outfit was matching!

IMG_0418Shirt, shoes and the sky.

In other news:

  • do not miss my Wednesday thighs, my quads were absolutely burning all day, between that and my sore glutes (read: bum) on Saturday I have been unable to sit down on the toilet properly all week, even today. I just have to wince and kind of flop down, not very graceful but hey, who am I trying to impress in there? Really?
  • Thursday was my really, really hungry day.
  • Push ups. End of story.
  • My shin is bruised from a failed over-bench jumping attempt. It is vaguely heart-shaped though so… yay?

I’m not sure which category to put this in but I had a couple of dreams during the week about cheating on the diet. Both times I woke up feeling guilty only to realise that I had just been dreaming, thankfully neither of the dreams was about marshmallows and my pillow was left uneaten.

Favourite Meal: Neither of us could decide but we have agreed that the tastiest was the Chicken Noodle Soup, the Beef Stroganoff was great for a hearty meal with a generous portion size, and we were both really impressed with the Roast Cinnamon Pumpkin and Feta Salad – if you haven’t tried it yet you should give it a go.

For the 12WBTers following me, some of my favourite forum topics from the week include:

  • Stroking the strog dog (beef stroganoff)
  • The surprising power of grunting
  • Before and Afters for the Newbies! Return members add yours here!
  • TIPS for keeping the food costs down
  • A list of things to do instead of binge eating

To view these just go to the forum page on the 12WBT website and type the above titles into the search bar.

Overall I had a really good week and I’m feeling positive. I hope that everyone is happy with their progress so far and ready for another week!

My goals for this week:

  • Get on top of exam prep – only three weeks to go!
  • Complete the Weekly Challenge of 300 push-ups for the week on top of the weekly exercise plan.

Can you tell me about some of your positives and negatives from Week One?

~ energyandEmily

Kick Off Day!!

Hello, I’m Emily!

This marks Kick Off day for my first round of the Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation!

My commitment, tweaked slightly from my post in the ‘Say It Out Loud’ forum, is:

I am going to lose 8kg by the end of round 2. I am going to make the exercise and eating plans a part of my daily routine and enjoy every second of it! I want to feel good about myself… not just in the morning, or for a week or two, or only in certain clothes. I’m going to push forward and regain some self confidence, feel healthier and stronger, and look great!

Additionally, my goals for the next 12 weeks are as follows:

  • After one month: Run 1km without stopping.
  • Lose the 8kg along with some bad habits and insecurities.
  • Run up *that* hill on the way home from a workout without getting puffed.
  • Wear my One Active bra/top (worn below in my BEFORE photo, eek!) out for a session without a shirt over the top and feel absolutely amazing in it.
  • Lose enough weight to model something for my sisters online store.
  • Learn about how to better look after my body.
  • No cheating, no slacking.
  • Make some new friends along the way!

I did my fitness test and measurements on the Saturday just gone, here are my results (click for bigger images):


I am fairly happy with my fitness results as I was hoping to fall into the intermediate category (albeit the lower end). As for the measurements, I don’t know much about what they should or shouldn’t be as I’ve never really been measured all over like that before but it will be good  to see the changes in the weeks to come.

Now for my BEFORE photos (you can click for bigger images if you want to):

Look, I guess I can be glad that I don’t absolutely hate what I see here but it is certainly an interesting thing to see a photo of yourself like this. No hiding behind clothes/other people, no cute poses or finding the right angle in the mirror; just me in all of my glory. And I have back fat?! Who knew?

Anyway, this is me right now but not again, not after this next 12 weeks.

This blog is to keep track of my progress and to keep me on track during the 12WBT but also to have a bit of fun. I’m interested in photography and a total foodie – so expect lots of pictures and recipes! I would really like to share this journey with whoever wants to share it with me. I’m looking forward to being inspired (even more) by all of the 12WBTers and hopefully along the way I might inspire a couple of people myself.

If you want to read a little bit more about me just head to my “About Me” page or say hello sometime!

~ energyandEmily