If you’ve been around these parts before, you know one of my big struggles with dance is my weight. Irish dance really can’t afford any extra fat, as the weight you’re fighting against when jumping should really be something that works to your advantage to overcome that gravitational struggle, mainly muscles. Also, I have a wedding coming up in a little over a year and I’m not happy with how I look.
Cue my food problems. Food is a big comfort to me and a way for me to destress and unplug from whatever is bothering me with life. It was a habit I picked up in childhood – partially from parents and partially from getting used to a larger intake when on a sports team. Over the years I’ve had bouts of successfully controlling the problem and bouts of just giving in to the craving to unplug via food consumption. I also have a supportive fiancé telling me I look good no matter how much weight I’ve gained since we started dating, which removes some of my drive to be more disciplined with my eating. Between a loving/somewhat enabling fiancé and the major stress of buying a house and moving, not only did dance have to go but so too did my nutrition standards.
So, on January 1st, I weighed myself in at 155 lbs (70.3 kg/11 stone 1). That might not sound heavy to many, but I’m pretty short and it’s definitely not all muscle. I’m the heaviest I’ve been since I left college and really close to my all time high. The New Year was a good opportunity for me to put my foot down and insist on getting back to my former…if not glory, at least a better comfort in my body and better fuel for my dance goals/wedding dress dreams.
Somewhat miraculously, I’ve been sticking to this goal more than a couple days and I dropped three pounds in the past week! There was certainly some initial water weight so I don’t want nor expect that rate of loss to continue, but I was very happy with the result. It was a struggle to stay on target some days, but other days came with built in food control with the general busyness of moving out of the apartment and into my house. In addition to getting more fruits and veggies, I’ve tried to do some more cooking at home rather than grabbing convenience food (i.e., pizzas). Since moving into the house, my accomplishments include crock pot chicken and dumplings, spaghetti with home-spiced tomato sauce, and chicken parmesan with tossed salad. Yesterday’s dinner was a chicken hot dog and bun, but hey, it was a long day and so too will be today!
I’m also not without treats. I got some tasty frozen yogurt for a sweet tooth fix and gave myself a housewarming gift in the form of a shipment of wine. Time will tell if I can actually maintain my momentum, but at the moment I’m very happy with where I am in terms of eating. Once I get a good groove there, I’ll focus again on my macronutrients to optimize them for dance performance.