Day 3: Rest…but did I?

 

I should use more catchy titles. Something like ‘A guy woke up in the morning, what he did next will blow your mind’ is bound to get more readers. Anywho that’s not my goal so screw it.

So I’m feeling a little proud of myself. A little optimistic and a little hopeful. Why you ask? (Even if you didn’t, ask now…Good. Now we’re up to speed)

Waking up and The 11am eating threshold:

Well I got a lot done today. I woke up at 7am in the morning and started working. I was hungry but I had a cup of green tea and then it was gone for the moment. As promised I wanted to not eat till 11am (intermittent fasting, read the prologue). But then a thought came to mind.

Do I really want to rest today? This doesn’t feel right.

As I’ve learnt lately, my biggest problem is that I’m very active mentally. That is not a good thing, as many people have told me. It makes me talk a lot (A LOT). It makes me fidget a lot. I always want to partake in or watch some form of action. And the worst part is I NEVER GET TIRED. It takes a great deal of effort to calm my mind down. In February of 2015 I had started doing the Insanity workout. Even though I woke up every morning and did 40 minutes of intensive training, I wasn’t tired during the day. I mean I was a little fatigued right after the workout but then I’d still manage to go up and down three flights of stairs to and from my college classrooms. It was Month 2 of Insanity which made me push the limit to 58 minutes of high intensity cardio, that finally brought some peace of mind to me. I felt tired enough to talk a little less, but the problem was I felt too tired to focus. However, I have to hand it to Shaun T, I lost 18 kgs in 60 days.

Of course thanks to Mr.Binge I gained them back progressively in a span of 6 months or so.

Freelectics, my road to sweat:

Anyway, coming back, I didn’t feel it just right that I wasn’t going to do any kind of physical exercise throughout the day. That is why I decided to go with the freelectics option. I had been hearing about freelectics for a long time now, and previously I thought it was something like crossfit. Then I heard that there’s an app version which is partially free. I downloaded the Freelectics bodyweight app (because you can do those workouts anywhere, so I figured I’d squeeze some in on rest days in the Kris Gethin workout) and I was amazed. Right there was all the help I needed.

I mean the sheer number of workouts there are amazing. They’re free and you can do them anywhere.

So I took up the Prometheus workout and there were two options. the first was Prometheus 1X and the second one was Prometheus 2X, the latter just being the former twice repeated. Being the arrogant piece of dog feces that I am, I went with the 2X option thinking I could ace it without a single problem. I mean the 1X was only 15 minutes and the 2X was half an hour. I wanted something substantial and the list of exercises didn’t look very intimidating. I was going to ace it, I was confident, I was determined.

I was wrong.

I barely pushed throught the first 15 mins (1X basically) and at the end of it I was dripping in sweat. But the good thing was that I felt good. If there’s anyone out there that just wants to be fit, and wants to sweat it out for 15 minutes a day just to get a feel of the rush, I recommend Freelectics.

No they’re not sponsoring me. I just liked the app and thought I’d tell you. Neither is Shaun T by the way. or Kris Gethin. I mean when your entire readership is about 6 people, and one of them is you, sponsors don’t really swarm around your blog.

Meals:

Okay so I had a breakfast of an apple and some green tea before I started out with the Freelectics, and later in the day I had an omelette of 2 eggs(whole) and some brown rice. It was a fairly light lunch.

In the evening I had 3 slices of whole wheat bread and an egg white omellete (2 eggs). I also had an orange.

At night I plan on having some brown rice.

Etc.

Now, I may have said that I feel hopeful today, but there are a few things I might have forgotten to include. One of those things is that I woke up with a bad cold and cough. The second is that my weight has gone up by half a pound. However, I’m taking both these things with a pinch of salt. My weight can go back down. It’s not the end of the world. I know I have to be patient. I will keep trying every single day and I will succeed. As for the cold, screw it I’m going to work out anyway. I don’t care if I get my cold boogers all over the treadmill.

Okay maybe I do, but just enough to carry a napkin to blow my nose into. I don’t want other people getting sick. Other than I use gym gloves so, yeah, two birds one stone.

The point is, I was at a staggeringly low point yesterday just becuase I binged. This is something that comes normally to people who are like me. When we binge, and we know we have, there is no greater sense of doom that comes with it. You feel like crap, but the best thing, in my humble opinion is to sleep it off. Tomorrow is truly another day. And this is true if you have any kind of a mental trauma. Just sleep it off. You’ll be fine and more composed the next day.

I hope to wake up early tomorrow and hit the gym with double the intensity and determination. I had a half assed workout yesterday, and I’m so dying to make it up by making tomorrow twice as awesome.

 

Day 2 : Chest and Triceps

Today’s day was…bad.

I feel like a complete and utter failure. Like the earth below me is no longer there. I want to go drown in a pool of shame with an anchor of all my maladies tied to me.

The problem is that if you had put anyone else in my place today, they would have thought today to be a really good day. It was a standard day, but not to someone like me. I feel terrible. And the worst part is that I don’t have anyone to share it with.

Let me back it up a bit.

I had to meet a friend and then my girlfriend at 11am today. They stay an hour’s distance away from where I live. And,  in order to fulfill my work obligations and my gym obligation, I had to wake up at 7am today. I rushed to the gym and did the most rushed version of the workout possible. I ran for half the time that I was supposed to run and rushed through the weight lifting without any kind of a break between sets. At the end of it all I felt like my arms were paining, but not all that much.

When it comes to working out you have to understand to give it priority number one. I can’t reveal much over here but understand that this 12-week project is very important for me. You could say it’s my life’s goal for now. I have basically made a lot of sacrifices in my life in terms of career and dreams, and ultimately reached to a point where things like this have begun to matter. I’ve always looked at guys who are ripped and have the perfect body. There is no dearth of Instagram profiles, movies and TV shows to show you a myriad of guys out there. They’re ripped and they look good and pretty much every girl you know loves them. They may point out at other features but you know where they’re really looking.

However when it comes to all these trainers and fitness experts, or even the models or actors themselves they keep telling you that fitness is more important that having aesthetics.

ARE YOU FRIGGING KIDDING ME? YOU HAVE BICEPS THE SIZE OF WATERMELONS! YOU’RE TELLING ME THAT I SHOULD JUST ‘TAKE A WALK AROUND THE BLOCK’ AND EAT CLEAN AND THAT WILL HELP ME?!

They act as if the body they got is purely out of the pursuit of fitness and a healthy lifestyle. That doesn’t happen. If I were to lift weights every day till eternity and maintain a healthy diet (not a specific one, mind you, just a general healthy diet that isn’t junk food but isn’t completely macro balanced extra special expensive rainbows and puppies diet either), I’d still have a decent body. I wouldn’t be ripped or shredded like those models. I don’t have a problem with the fact that they go ahead and take extra measures to ensure that kind of a body, I just don’t like the lies. If you’re going to stop so much as drinking water before photoshoots, come clean about it and don’t create an illusion for all the aspiring people out there who want to be like you.

Anywho. I did finish my workout. I took some brown rice with me and went to my friends place. My lunch was as clean as can be. The only thing that went wrong is in the evening. It was raining heavily and I had to get a meal in and there was no place nearby that would cater to my health needs. I went to an eating joint and then my friend and I had half a roll (or frankie, depending on what you call it) each.

And then the drive began.

Before I knew it I was at the adjoining restaurant having waffles covered in chocolate sauce and what not. I had a chicken sandwich after that. Then I went with my friends to a restaurant and have chicken (steamed) wontons.I don’t know how good they are because my Noom coach says they’re red.

I know what you’re thinking. What’s the big deal?

It’s not about the wontons, or the waffles. it’s about breaking the commitment I made. I had promised myself I wouldn’t eat junk. And I went ahead and did exactly that. I did a half-assed workout and I ate junk. Great. JUST FUCKING GREAT.

The problem with peer pressure isn’t acceptance. The problem with peer pressure is obligations. I don’t want to look like a complete dick by not going to meet my girlfriend. I love her and want to spend time with her. She’s probably the best thing that’s happened to me. At the same time I don’t want to be a complete dick to a friend who’s been there for me during some trying times. All I have to do is accompany them, right? Well no, because then I put myself in a cycle where I just keep doing things according to what they want to do.

A very famous article on Cracked.com (link), one of the last sources on earth you’d expect to find inspiration, once said that when you decide to break out of your comfort zone, everyone in your comfort zone will go against you. This may include your daily set of friends and relatives, your girlfriend, and most importantly, your own brain. When we pick the easy life we make sure we wire our brain and make it the slave of these comforts where it can survive with minimum stress.

However when you put yourself through something that you are uncomfortable with, mentally and physically, like going to workout hard instead of staying home and gorging on chips in the comfort of your living room, your brain revolts. It puts up all sorts of images in your mind such as ‘It’s okay, skip it for one day. Do something else. It is the world that doesn’t understand. You’re special in your own way you don’t need to conform to the ways of the world’

The bad news is you’re not a special fucking snowflake. You’re just a mass of tissues and cells like every other human being on this planet. And you aren’t going to get what you want out of life by being in your comfort zone and feeling entitled to a better job, and a hot girlfriend.You have to work yourself towards those things. Instead of asking, “Why am I not getting those things?”, which basically makes you mentally shift the blame to things like luck and unnatural elements, you can ask yourself, “What can I do to put myself in a position where I get the things I want?” This has an immense difference in the way you think. It takes all the responsibility on you.

I’m going to bed now. I hate myself. Maybe that is how this disorder works but I freaking hate myself. But tomorrow is a new day. I’ll begin again. Not the workout though. That’s going to continue as it is.

 

Day 1: Legs

So today is the first day of my Kris Gethin workout.

It was horrendous.

But I’ll come back to that later.

Waking up:

I woke up at about 7am because I had to work. I really have to time myself to wake up earlier. I had seen this video alpha m., a YouTuber specializing in grooming and self-improvement (link). He had basically enlisted a few tips to wake up early in the morning. One of those tips is to use repeated alarms. So say you want to wake up at 5 am, you set an alarm 20,15,10,5 minutes before 5am. This goes to all the snooze button hitting fans out there.

I really love the idea.I know I’m going to be waking up grumbling to myself early in the morning. It sounds like like a really effective method, however. Before this, I had read in a Robin Sharma book (don’t remember which one, I read a lot) that it takes exactly 42 days to form a habit. So if I were to put a repeated alarm for 42 days, my brain wouldn’t need it on day 43. The only problem is that I live with my parents and they might not really appreciate the repeated alarms going off.

At this point, I’m past caring. I’m going to do it anyway. Let’s see what happens. I’m hoping to hell that I don’t forget to set my alarms.

Eating:

This morning I had some rice flakes and one boiled egg. Lunch was 4 slices of white bread and two scrambled eggs. I know, I know, white bread is a strict no-no. But it was raining cats and dogs and I didn’t want to go out just to get some whole wheat.About half an hour after my workout I had a cup of green tea, an orange and a multivitamin.This was about 10 mins before I started writing this post, which is 20 mins before it got published. I have about 3kg (yes I use the metric system. LEARN TO CONVERT PEOPLE) of brown rice in the house. I’m thinking of making a meal plan.

At the same time, I conflict. I really want to take up the intermittent fasting method. It seems like a really interesting method. Especially for a binge eater like me, some amount of discipline and self-control balanced with being able to eat what I want in that specific eating window, seems like a good idea. I should make it clear at this point that I’m just starting out on my workout, and I don’t plan on taking any special pre or post workout powdered supplements or tablets. Mostly because I don’t want to invest in them. I have a long history of taking up workouts and giving up on them. If I were to spend X amount on some protein shake and then give up on my workout in between, I’d lose the X amount.

I should mention that I have a food weighing scale to measure how much I eat. They come at really cheap prices. If you don’t have one, understand that a small palm sized bowl of the height of a standard pinky finger can take up food ranging from 70-150 grams depending on the type of foot (potatoes are going to weight more than rice). I also have the Noom Coach app on my phone so that I can log in exactly how much I take in. Sometimes calorie counting seems like a very tedious task. Sometimes I even skip a few days before I start logging my calories again.

You know what? I’m not going to stop today. I’m going to make sure that I log in. It’s not about knowing how many calories I’m eating. I used to be a patron of My Fitness Pal, but I switched to Noom mainly because it has a color code for every food type. Green means healthy, yellow is midway between healthy and unhealthy, red is unhealthy. This helps you see what kind of foods you would rather eat. That plus the color red is known to agitate the brain and alarm it (which is why it’s the universal sign for stop), so you don’t feel like having foods that you’d later see as red on your Noom. You can use whatever you want. You can even choose not to use anything. I’m going to use the app because it has certain times when you can eat. You can’t add more than 5 meals a day, including the three standard meals and two snacks. This will allow me to regulate my eating to 5 meals and probably control the drive when it comes midway, knowing that I can’t log in.

I said probably. Let’s see what happens.

Okay so here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to have my last meal before 8, which is going to be some lentils (100 grams) and some brown rice (150 grams). Then I’m going to eat my pre-workout banana (stop giggling. what are you, 12?) at 10am tomorrow and then go to workout at 10.30am. That puts my fasting window at 14 hours. Let’s hope I don’t have cravings. I’ll post the rest of my meals in tomorrow’s post. 

Workout:

This 12-week journey is very crucial to me. It will basically answer a lot of questions. The first one would be,”Can I beat the drive to binge?”. The biggest problem we all have is motivation. I don’t want it to be a problem. I have a few videos on my cell phone that I like to watch before I hit the gym. Before I hit the gym is the time when my brain is most vulnerable to tempt me into not going. That is the time I need to fight it in order to get control and make my way to the gym. My friend had once told me that the biggest challenge isn’t workout out, it’s getting up every day and going even when your workout starts to get repititive.

So I did the legs workout of Kris Gethin’s 12-week transformation program. It started out with 20 minutes of light jogging followed by all the leg machine exercises that you can easily find in a standard gym. It was the sheer amount of sets and repititions that got to me. At the end of it, I could barely stand. I was out of breath, mentally and physically tired and could barely make my way to the door.

And then I saw two flight of stairs to the exit. That sounds like a piece of cake on any other day, but when you’ve lifted close to 60kg with nothing but your thighs, getting down a flight of stairs is the most excruciating thing ever. I had to descend the stairs holding the bar at the side, like a toddler.

But the important thing was that at the end of it, I was proud. I had done it. I had made it this far. It wasn’t really much. In the grand scheme of 12 weeks I’ve gone by with 12 hours of this…thing. BUT IT FEELS AMAZING. I know for a fact that I won’t be walking much, but I have to go to my friend’s tomorrow at 12pm, and I’ll be coming back at night, which means I have to clock in my workout at about 10.30am.

I can’t stress enough how important it is for me to wake up early tomorrow.

The first thing I’m going to do is wrap up all the work I have today. Usually I do half of it till midnight and the other half in the morning, like I did today. But I’m going to try and cram and finish it off by midnight so that I can wake up early tomorrow.

Fingers crossed.

 

Prologue: How binge eating controls my life

Hi, I’m Nat, and I’m about to start off on a journey. The problem is, I need your help to start.

There are many different reasons I’m writing this blog. None of them are for fame or money. The most important reason, I think, is for self-introspection. I want to see what my brain is saying. The other is to share so that I can get feedback. A third reason could be that I don’t really want to share anything with a therapist, and nobody else will listen to me.

The first thing you should know about my binge eating story is that this isn’t a success story. I haven’t overcome anything through a really inspiring tale that I’ve come to tell you.If you are looking for motivation, you might only get it from a part of this blog. I’m still under the influence of my eating disorder. I’m still being controlled by the binge. That is why I’ve decided to go on a day-to-day account of how it feels to binge, and what it is like to be a binge eating person every day. If you’re looking for something to relate to and possibly live my ups and downs with me, you should take this blog up.

The second thing you should know is that I’m not going to offer any direct help or therapy.This, of course, doesn’t mean that you won’t find the answers in this blog. You may, and if you do I urge you to write to me and tell me. All I’m going to do is share. I’m going to share everything that I have pent-up within me for the last few years.

Right from the time I grew up, I have been under the influence of food. When you live in a poor family that is full of people that are strict, you tend not to have many luxuries in life. My father had a regular source of income. However, he was strictly against smoking and drinking, on moral grounds or because of his past experiences with people. Unfortunately, he was also against going to the movies a lot, playing video games, watching a lot of telly or even surfing the web. These, however, were for purely monetary reasons. As a result, my brother and I had only one form of positive reinforcement throughout our lives.

Food.

When you live in an economically backward family that cannot afford things like a play station of a new bicycle or even martial arts or swimming classes, pretty much the only way parents know of rewarding you is to make you eat good food. My mother is an excellent cook. She’s also really good at reading me. Whenever I was sad or anxious after a day of school, she used to whip up some treats for me to snack on. Whenever I had an exam or some event that would get me all stressed up, she would make my favorite food so that I could snack on it. It didn’t matter if it was my birthday, my brother’s birthday, or any special occasion, we celebrated with food.

In fact eating out was the kind of bait we used to get to achieve things in life. “If you get good grades, I’ll take you to XYZ eating joint for your favorite burgers.” Looking back, I think that is where the whole cycle began. I know my mother meant well, and was only trying to treat her kids and make them have fun living within their means. However, this constant barrage of food as a rewards system and a stress buster began paving the way for neural circuits. My mind started associating food with almost every emotion, most dangerously boredom. The end result today is that I want to eat something delicious no matter what. If I achieve something, I want to eat. When I’m sad or upset, I want to eat. When I’m tensed, I want to eat. Hell, even when I’m bored and there’s nothing else to do, I want to eat.

This friend of mine is an enforcer without knowing it. It is no fault of his own. It’s my problem. He’s a pretty chilled out dude. We get together at his place and eat. In fact, if neither of us has enough cash to eat, I may not even visit him. That’s how low I’ve sunk. Food controls my life and I admit it. I’m not proud of it. I want all the help and support I can get.

Simultaneously though there is this ever growing need to look good. I don’t have a great face, which is why the only other thing I decided to rely on is having a great body. I’ve been seriously trying to hit the gym since I was 14. That doesn’t really work out well. I join a gym, and for some time I’m making some real progress. However in the middle of it all, I may break my nutrition plan and binge, and then feel so crappy about myself that I actually don’t go to the gym the next day onwards. It feels like I’ve wasted all these months working out because I had a pizza.

I don’t know how many of you experience this, but one of the things I experience is something I call ‘the drive’. This is one of those episodes where I suddenly want to eat something. I may not even be hungry, and I want to eat. I may just as well be walking on the street, but when the ‘drive’ hits me, I want to go to the nearest junk food outlet and gorge on something. This may even be after having a full meal. The reason I call it the drive is because when I’m in that mode, I’m numb to everything else. All I can think about is the feeling of biting into that scrumptious snack. My actions of walking to the eating joint, placing my order, paying for it from my wallet or card, sitting and eating the whole thing non-stop, all happens like I’m on automatic. I feel like I’m not actively controlling any of those actions, that I’m just a passenger giving in to my mind taking over with the drive. You may know this as bingeing or cravings, but I like to call it the drive, because it drives you. You don’t give two hoots about the entire world. You just want to eat, and sometimes it doesn’t even matter what.

Don’t even get me started about all the times I’ve decided to diet. This is an on an of cycle that goes on every month. I take up a diet, and restrict my calories, and then one day the drive hits me, and when I snap out of it I’m at the supermarket gorging on chips or eating some other junk. Then I feel so crappy about it, there is no lower measure to how bad. And then comes the message from my mind that, looking back, I couldn’t hate more.

“This is okay. Start dieting tomorrow onwards. Let today be your cheat day.”

Instead of going straight home, I get an ultra drive and just keep walking to all the stores I can find my favorite snacks in, gorge on them saying ‘I am going to be so strict with myself, tomorrow onwards’.

It’s been 15 years. The tomorrow hasn’t come yet.

The biggest problem is that I don’t even know if writing about this is going to make all the difference in the world. What I do know is that I desperately want to come out of this. I want to come out of that trance and be self-aware of the actions I’m taking and their consequences. I want to be aware of the fact that I’m eating myself to oblivion and gaining weight and losing it in constant fluctuations. I want to eat healthy, live healthy.

Starting today, I’m going to start doing two things. I’m going to regulate (not curb) my eating disorder. And I’m going to start on a regime of Kris Gethin’s 12-week trainer.

12 weeks. I’m giving myself 12 weeks to go on this journey. In these 12 weeks, I’m going to share with you tips and tricks that I’ll read about as I seek info on how to

  • Wake up early every day
  • Have a morning routine
  • Clear up the fog in my mind. Be sharper and think straight
  • Get rid of the drive. Gain control over my mind
  • Eat healthy, workout hard
  • Change my life. Be more availale emotionally
  • Give you the first hand report of all my failures and successes
  • Get ripped

I hope you stick with me these 12 weeks, whoever you are. It’s just a start. If I come out of this with some form of self control, I promise you, that you’ll have a first hand account of a person who was at rock bottom, but ultimately got to the top