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  1. Now that my health seems to have stabilised and I've been back on the forum a reasonable length of time, I want to start a log of sorts to track my (any?) progress and hopefully my recovery. Of course what I really want to do is turn back the clock. I want to get back to where I was in 2014 before things all started going pear shaped. I saw some pictures of myself last night on Colin's (my bf) phone from 2014 and it was a bit of a shock to the system. I saw a young woman, full of life, smiling, and dare I say it - pretty. Now - I feel like an old woman, I look haggard, unkempt. I don't stride around with confidence and purpose, I shuffle around in pain and discomfort. I spend a good portion of my day asleep and I rely on Colin to an huge degree. When I look in the mirror I feel old and ugly. I want to be the other Guzzi again so that's what I'm setting out to do. My goal for 2017 is to try and get back to being the woman I was in these pictures. My plan to accomplish this involves: No. 1 - Post monthly progress pics I'm going to use this as a kind of doodle pad for my thoughts. There obviously won't be any workout logs but I plan to post my monthly weigh-in and progress pictures. I gained around 10kg whilst I was ill so although I'm definitely not "dieting" I am trying to get back to eating better and cutting out the boredom eating, which should have an impact on my figure. I will track these using the pictures rather than the scale number. I'm deliberately weighing myself in kilos so that I can't get hung up on the number. Kilos mean nothing to me. No. 2 - Post my food accomplishments The last 2 years have been pretty poor in terms of diet and nutrition. I couldn't cook because I was ill and Colin really couldn't cook because.... Well just because, apparently, so there has been a big reliance on food that goes from the freezer straight to the oven. I plan to slowly work on getting back to eating better. Of course this is totally dependant on my mobility and stamina so it's outwith my control to a certain extent but I'm hoping to see improvements in my health and mobility over the course of the year. I plan to posting my food related accomplishments, whether that's sharing a recipe that I've managed to cook or just doing the usual "food porn" photos. It's all about celebrating my successes in the kitchen and hopefully giving me the the confidence and incentive to cook again, when the mobility issues allow it. No. 3 - Be active on the forum I also want to feel young and carefree again. Now there's not much I can do about this one other than hope things improve and try to shift my focus away from the pain and mobility issues. Anything that helps me to do that is invaluable. One of the things I think was fundamental to my state of mind back in 2014 was the community here on NF. The members friends I made and the support I received had such an important role in shaping my mindset but more than that, their encouragement gave me real self confidence for the first time in my life. I was able to be myself, something I don't think I'd ever really been able to do before. That's the real reason I felt so carefree, because I was actually happy in myself for the first time. The last two years have kinda sucked the life outta me so I plan to find my confidence again. I can't really engage with people in the Real WorldTM because I'm fairly house bound and all my friends and family are hundreds of mile away, but I can be an active member of the forum again and help other people to improve their lives too. No. 4 - Search out opportunities for fun There's not a lot that I can take part in, I don't know from one day to the next what my mobility or ability is going to be so I need to try and make opportunities for fun as and when I can. I will write about anything fun in here because I want to focus on the fun stuff and not the times when I can't do stuff. "With out thoughts we make the world" is one of my favourite quotes and I truly believe it. If I can keep my attention focused on the things that make me laugh or smile then my perception of myself will follow suit and I will start to feel like a happy, fun person again. I already feel more optimistic just by writing this post. Win! I might also go waaaaaaay off topic and post some utter shite because, y'know, shits and giggles.
  2. Unix

    The Hero return!

    Hello everyone! I had a very bad time in this period but i'm still here, trying to improve and to learn. As many have said: "Not failure, feedback!". 11:05 pm right now in italy, i have to wake up not later than 5:00 am so i will just set my tomorrow goal at 04:30 am and i will upgrade this topic later ( tomorrow ) Good luck to everyone who is reading this
  3. Hello, everyone! Wow, what an usual post for this part of the forum, no? I thought I'd do so here, though, not as a means of picking myself back up after failure, per se, but to really become reacquainted with the forums, and to state where I'm at personally. When I first signed up several months ago, I was not in good shape. Digestion was a wreck; turns out I had a case of S.mall I.ntestinal.B.acterial.O.vergrowth. I was still fighting my past as a former vegan, trying to push away ANY opportunity to eat animal foods, and eating soy from tempeh and tofu, which it turns out my body absolutely HATED. On top of that, I was committing to taking too many aerobics classes at my gym, which basically canceled out any progress I would make when it came to lifting. In my personal life, I was struggling to find work as a newly certified yoga instructor; I was so consumed by yoga that I was in a state of denial, thinking that all I had to do was teach yoga and be happy. Other aspects of my life were out of control, from the minute things such as cleaning up my workspace, getting my workouts in (yeah… I skipped, a lot), setting up priorities, surrounding myself with things that brought me down (I was subscribed to a lot of vegans waxing poetical against paleo and meat eating, as well as believing that all meat eaters deserved to die; not a good state of mind to have I believe, even if you're vegan- I also was letting myself be guilted by former friends I knew way back in high school who were essentially bullying my lifestyle and choice to not go the traditional route and enroll in college…). Anyway, I had things that needed to be straightened up pronto. Around mid April I should say, I first decided to slowly add back in some meat. I still do not eat animal foods every day, but I am getting close to doing so. My stomach acid is very low, especially after having SIBO, so I'm currently supplementing right now to boost it up; major improvements so far, as it no longer feels like there's food sitting in my gut for hours. I also kicked the SIBO infection to the curb, which is no easy feat. Digestion is still a matter of maintenance, but so far, I've improved dramatically. With my workouts and nutrition, I'm going to preface by saying I'm a natural hard-gainer, with a bit of endomorph thrown in; I can certainly feel an improvement or change post workout. But visually, I'm an ectomorph through and through. I've tried the old fashioned approach of eating everything in plain sight, but because of my former IBS struggles, yeast infections, and recently, SIBO, doing so was not good both for my digestion and state of mind. Now, I just try to focus on investing in nutrient-rich, whole foods; leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, squash, fermented foods (kefir, kraut, kimchi, pickles, miso, kumbocha), chicken liver (don't knock it till you try it), eggs, fish, chicken/turkey, etc; I take L-Glutamine (post workout and in the afternoon, mainly for gut health), a good multivitamin, HCL (for low stomach acid), probiotic (doctor's orders), and a fermented greens powder that's also good for gut health (Vitality Greens by Body Ecology). That's it. At the gym, I lift 4X a week; 2X Upper, 2X Lower. I work on my core once or twice a week. HIIT once a week. Long Hobbit walks a few days a week, depending on time and the weather. Yoga/Foam Rolling/Deep Stretching (YIN) DAILY; good for the body, good for the mind, and good for the spirit. I used to struggle at using the 20 pound barbell back in March, now I'm at 30 pounds, and am close to using the 40 pound one. I use the machines as well, and have varying set weights I've managed to improve upon; too much to list here, but I'll say I've jumped up quite a bit since April on all of them! I can see some improvement physically; there's a bit of size to my lower body now, and some of my workout pants are actually starting to tighten up a bit. My upper body, though still thin, has gotten a bit of definition at last. Same for my core, which is the hardest to really 'tone', as my IBS can flare up and cause a bit of bloating on occasion (which is why I avoid eating out whenever I can). Otherwise, I'm finally starting to see some 'gains', even if they are small. The best results have come from my performance. Well, I think I'll stop here, but I just want to say to all of you reading this, that consistency truly is key, and fine tuning along the way isn't so bad either. Just commit. Persist Until Something Happens Yours Truly, The Dragon
  4. Hey there Nerd Fitness! Like a lot of people, I'm a 20-something with a desk job and not a lot of free time. Or at least, that's what I tell myself. Last spring and summer, I had a gym membership and made tons of progress improving myself, working out at least 3 times a week and eating responsibly. Then I started traveling for work, and my discipline flew out the window. 3 months passed without a foot stepped inside the gym, so I cancelled my membership. Although my weight hasn't changed much in that time, my body mass definitely has, and I'm ready to do something about it. My motivation: swing dance and kayaking. Lindy hop is my earthly obsession. I love swing dance, swing music, swing nerds...it's kind of the most awesome thing ever. When I'm feeling brave (which is most of the time), I even compete! I know getting in shape makes me a better dancer, and I want to dance harder, longer, and be able to do more awesome stuff (like this!). I've been rafting every summer for about 10 years now, and I recently got my first hard boat. I'm terrified that I will have to roll my kayak when I flip, but I know that if I'm going to level up my whitewater skills, I have to learn to roll, and building up core strength will make rolling easier. Plus I just want to be the best me I can be. So here I am, struggling to get back into a healthy routine and hoping that by joining you all on your own journeys to improve yourself, we can all make this a little more fun. What is your favorite benefit of getting fit? Are there any other dancers or whitewater fanatics out there?
  5. Hey guys, So after a little weird viral arthritic sickness I'm back into circuit training, and loving being back into it. Getting my energy levels back up, feeling stronger after every time. What I'm after here I guess is a little preemptive advice, as I can feel myself finding some of my routine very easy, and others a little too hard. Firstly, my circuit as it stand is this: Decline push ups x15 Hanging knee raises x10 Dumbell Squats x10 Chin ups x as many as I can do up to 10 Body Lever 1min repeat 4 times. It is intense, but firstly, I'm getting to the stage where the push ups are not really challenging enough. Not quite there yet, but I'd rather have something set in stone to change it up with before my triceps and chest get too bored. So should I be looking at wider/narrower hand positions, one armers, higher decline? Is there a general progression to follow? I definitely dont feel ready for one arm yet, I guess that's the end stage of push ups. Other than that, I've just in the last month added chin ups to my circuit after buying a cheap portable doorway bar. My goal at the moment is to hit 10 chin ups or pull ups in a rep. I can barely hit 5 of either, obviously tapering off after every set. Am I being too impatient here? Someone tell me I am and I'll gladly shut up. It just seems like a wall I cant get over yet, and it's a little frustrating. I'm pretty sure my form's ok, I dont swing around at all, and I'm more or less starting from a dead hang, so maybe I'm just being too hard on myself. However if anyone does have suggestions please hit me up. Thanks!
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