this is an early sunday morning, 6:45 am. a cup of warm tea, the view of clear sky and sunshine through the window together with edvard grieg’s piece from “peer gynt” makes this moment so special. this is the very time to describe the seventh week of my 100 days challenge.
affairs of the mind
it feels like the process of developing new habits due to the challenge has completely changed the way i perceive things. this has already been mentioned in the past. however i would like to repeat and once more state that after almost 50 days it does not feel like a challenge anymore. new way of eating, new daily routine and self discipline has step by step become the new definition of what i am. binge eating has been forgotten. as well as the feeling of a sugar crash and stuffing the stomach with candies a few times a day. this is the past now. and i am happy to have an opportunity to use the word past and forgotten when i talk about these things. that is because at some time it was a huge problem with no light at the end of the tunnel. now i do feel free. such a paradox: daily self discipline has given me the opportunity to know what the freedom is. well, at leats relatively, at least for me. i am happy.
another thing – there has been a concern in my mind recently. from the moment when i started sharing my story online quite a significant increase of anxiety and frustration appeared inside my head. therefore i usually spend a lot of time checking the phone, dealing with notifications and so on. and looks like this has become a small problem. however the root cause is actually clear here. as far as i do remember myself i have been always cautious and even afraid of what other people would think about the way i think, talk or look like. recently the appearance of this quality has decreased slightly. however the constant checking of gadgets implies that there is some anxiety or fear that someone might not like the content i share or that even someone will think something bad about it. this is most likely a fear of rejection or a wish to be accepted. i am not going to discuss what causes this, but almost without a doubt it could be stated that such problem exists.
however it does not feel like there is no way out. there is, but the path has to be followed in order to exit. and the path is familiar. in other words, i know what to do in order to avoid this issue. thus i have to act accordingly. i do understand that despite the spectre of different opinions belonging to different human beings being countable it is of a huge magnitude. therefore the fact that there will always appear at least one person who does not like the content that i share and at least one who thinks that actually this is quite helpful and inspiring. so what should i do?
first of all, never base your own actions on other person’s opinion. this is what i have learned theoretically but struggle a little bit with applications. there will always be a variety of opinions. however if there is something you are driven about you should learn how to be constantly concentrated towards that. there is a very nice comparison made by elliott hulse which i use a lot to explain my idea. in some video he mentioned an example of a bird that sings during early morning hours somewhere high up in a tree. the bird does not care if its song will wake up someone living in the house near the tree, nor does the bird care about whether people like its song or not. the small creature just has its own thing to do and does it despite any reaction from the surrounding world. therefore i am always trying to apply this concept to myself: i am driven about my idea, i am living it and i am sharing it. i am singing my own song. if someone does not like it, oh well. this happens and it is inevitable.
therefore it is crucial to stop paying too much attention to small details. if someone takes each like and follow directly through the heart (by this i mean take it too personally), it will definitely create a problem. it costs a lot of mental energy and might distract or even discourage from the main goal and activities.
therefore, the most important lesson not only of the seventh week, but from the entire challenge period: let small things go and concentrate on more important stuff. that is definitely easier to write down than to actually do in the real world.
everything is going according to the plan. seven weeks have already passed, 6 kilograms have already been lost. this is the perfect pace in my opinion meaning that i drop approximately 1% of the body mass each week. this is not the world record of weight loss. however my aim is to maximise the fat loss and not the weight loss. therefore i am trying to do everything in order to achieve this goal slowly and consistently. today the scale showed 83.2kg. tomorrow is monday – the day when i usually measure the stomach circumference. feels like that is going to be decreased according to the feeling of broader pants. by saying that i mean the feeling when pants usually start to look a little bit wider than a week ago. that is an awesome feeling!
this week i proceeded with the following pattern:
- monday – woke up at 5am. stretching exercises at home. kind of a rest day.
- tuesday – woke up at 4am. at 6am i started a gym treadmill workout.
- wednesday – woke up at 4am. at 4:10am i started a jog.
- thursday – woke up at 5am. at 6am i started a gym workout.
- friday – woke up at 4am. at 4:10am i started a jog.
- saturday – sleep as long as it happens. a gym workout at 9am.
- sunday – woke up at 4:30am. at 9am a long run is planned. (at the moment it is 8:22am when i write this section)
times of sleeping fluctuate from day to day. sometimes i go to bed as early as 8pm and during some days it happens at 10pm. in average i get something like 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night. so far everything has been fine and looks like the body has adapted quickly and works perfectly.
a new amazing thing that i have found this week is stretching. i have been ignoring this action for so many years. however during the week seven i decided to start doing this. it feels uncomfortable but after some time i started feeling benefits. it is either a placebo or it has actually become a reason why i feel better when doing squats, when running and performing other physical activities. it just seems like the body is more flexible and it has become easier to perform certain movements. i spend at least 20-30 minutes every day for stretching. sometimes i feel lazy however i just force myself to proceed. if you have a doubt – by all means just do it. you will thank yourself after some time.
running activities have been going well also. i have been step by step increasing the pace while trying to keep the heart rate at the same level. also it is much easier to run compared to the first week when i weighted 89 kilograms. this week a gym treadmill interval run training has also been involved. the reason is because for quite a long time the only kind of running i have been performing was long and steady jogs. therefore some anaerobic activities should train my speed and power.
now it is the time to go for a long run of sunday – my beloved activity.
and here i am after a 30km run. it was hot, uncomfortable and hard. i had 1.5 litre of water. drank it all. during the second half of the distance i wanted to stop many times. actually my mind is quite active during these hard moments. it starts whining like an helpless baby. i keep checking how far i have gone, how far there is ahead of me. therefore i would like to mute it somehow and concentrate more on the process itself. despite this managing to finish the planned distance in 2 hours 42 minutes and 24 seconds made me feel happy and proud.
there were a little bit less of gym activities during the week 7. strength workouts were done on thursday and saturday. every time i aim to perform some compound movements in order to maintain the strength level. actually i managed to perform more deadlifts than the week before. this time i managed to finish with two sets of 5 reps weighted 140 kilograms. this is my personal best so far. front squats seem to become easier after starting the stretching thing. maybe as mentioned before this is just a placebo. however, this week i managed to do more of them as well. therefore it makes me feel extremely positive because despite all these jogged kilometers the strength does not abandon my body. this is one of my aims as well.
seems like a nice relationship with food has been developed during these seven weeks. as i have mentioned in the post about the binge eating problem it looked as if there were no chance of overcoming that disorder. however now my approach towards nutrition is very natural and organic. i eat when i want to. i adjust my plan every day so that the variety of meals is broader and the same food is not being repeated day after day. there is no signs of cravings for chocolate or other sweets that i have completely cut off from my everyday life. during long sunday runs i bring some energy bars in order to provide the body with some energy. however they are so sickly sweet that for example today i only managed to eat a half of it – simply it was too sweet for me. i could not imagine that something could be too sweet for me a few months ago. i used to eat tons of sugar. however, i am again happy to use the phrase used to because it is in the past now.
i usually workout on an empty stomach. this is not because i think that this is the right way to do. simply there is not enough time to eat breakfast when i wake up at 4am and at 4:10 i am already running. even on saturday i do not eat before the weight workout and still manage to reach a personal best in deadlifting. this implies how amazing the human body is and how quickly it can adapt and perform well in a variety of conditions. there are only two cases when i do not workout fasted:
- long runs (more than a half marathon)
- anaerobic activities (such as long and fast intervals on a treadmill)
in such cases i always fuel workouts with some carbohydrates and fats. it is an interesting fact: i have noticed that every time when i start jogging on an empty stomach the heart rate is significantly lover at the same pace compared to when going after a meal. it would be very interesting to know an exact reason why such pattern appear. maybe the digestion is so sophisticated process and requires so much effort from the heart that pumps blood. i do not know.
lessons of this week
in conclusion i can say that it has been a nice week. there are a few things to be improved and kept in mind for the future:
- concentrate towards your idea/thing and do it despite what other people think.
- do not emphasise insignificant details. keep your sight focused to the distance rather than to things that do not depend on you and you have absolutely no power to control them.
- stay consistent. do not quit when it becomes hard and one day success will become an inevitable event.
i wish you all a great sunday