Last post! GRADUATION POST
Now that my first Kenzai program is over and I’ve had a week to reflect, I think I understand exactly what it gave me: a hard reset. Before I signed up, I was humming along, eating less healthily that I should have been, getting little to no exercise. I was sort of happy and content for a while, but then I started to feel sluggish and unhappy with my appearance and knew that I was fast approaching a crossroads. I could either continue as I was into my forties or I could change.
But change is hard. It can feel like breaking out of prison. There are bars on the windows, concrete walls and locked doors. It’s even harder when that prison is comfortably appointed, with lazy nights in front of Netflix, bottomless wine and greasy, delicious food. To change, I needed a control, alt, delete. A hard restart.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m really glad the program is over. There were parts of it that sucked, and I cheated more than I’d like to admit. Making the time was the hardest thing, and I still have no idea how I would have managed it if I didn’t work from home. But I came out the other side knowing how to eat smart and make working out something you embrace, rather than thinking about it as a chore. It took me back to basics, which is exactly where I needed to be. In other words, I’m glad it’s all over, but I’m really glad I did it.
Until next time! x
Not much to report, I'm happy to be on the home stretch, I had planned on having a perfect, flawless last week, but then I dropped the ball on Monday. So now I'm planning to have a perfect, flawless last few days! x
I was sick for most of this week so missed two work-outs and was VERY relaxed with the diet for the most part. Still, I’m feeling better today. I’m still plodding along, looking forward to the finish line (which is so close!) while also thinking about which parts of Kenzai I’m going to incorporate into my normal, civilian life when all this is over. I feel like my relationship with food and exercise has changed so much and in so many ways, and I’m sort of excited to go out into the world on my own, using what I’ve learned. x
I’m just touching base really, because I’ve been quite busy with work and have been gently poked by the Kenzai team to hurry up and blog. All good on my end, although I had a slip-up last night at an awards night. I was nominated for something but didn’t win, so comforted myself with champagne. Not a good idea. I’m not going to lie. It was everything I remember and more, but I woke with a hangover, which made the work-out WAY harder than it needed to be. Onward and upward. Hope you’re all killing it! x
I've been a terrible Kenzai-er of late. I've been keeping up with the diets and workouts but have been largely absent from the blogs. I generally work from home but lately have been required to work in an actual office and it makes Kenzai SO much harder. I've been reminded how much easier I've had it up to this point, and how amazing all you 9-5ers are! x
Not much to report this week. Another week down, another week closer. I had a cheeky cheat-wine yesterday because it was my birthday. I’ve just turned 38, which is nervously close to 40, which is yet another reason to keep up with Kenzai!
There’s not a whole lot for me to report this week, aside from to say that the indulgence, coupled with the fact we’re over the halfway mark, worked wonders for my motivation. Despite seeing results, I'd been feeling like I was stuck in the second act of a TV movie that was way too long and way too boring, but now I’m over the hump I’m feeling good again. I hope everyone else is killing it! x
This week, I felt a little “Kenzai fatigue” for the first time. The work-outs are obviously still very challenging and I’m certainly not hating the food, but I just felt a little tired of it all. I think it’s because we’re right in the middle of the hump. To move past it, I looked back at my body shots. They reminded me that this program works and why I signed up in the first place. Anytime I feel that fatigue I’ll go back and look at my first body shot, which will hopefully do the trick. Onward and upward now! x
It has been another week of highs and lows. For the most part, I’ve been really good with the workouts and diet. It’s become sort of second nature and I’m really noticing the weight start to fall. I’m feeling much more confident in my clothes and in my own skin, but I’ve also cheated a bit.
Confession time: my nephew’s 18th birthday was on Saturday night and I drank all the things. It actually wasn’t as bad as that - I ate dinner before arriving, avoided *most* of the delicious party snacks on offer and only drank “healthy” alcohol - but I did indulge way too much. Then I thought: "okay, so you had a backslide, you’ll redeem yourself by being sensible tomorrow." The only problem was, my mother-in-law plays June Carter in a Johnny Cash tribute band and was performing the following day, in a pub, where they sold beer in those cool glasses with the big handles. Needless to say, I had another backslide, and now I’m afraid to weigh myself.
Onward and upwards, I suppose. This confession has helped a lot. I feel slightly unburned. I hope you all had a fabulous week, and if you cheated like me, I hope this unburdens you a little too. x
This week I thought way too much about when I was going to enjoy my indulgence and what it was going to be. I wanted it to be perfect, like a marriage proposal or naming a pet. There were so many variables and options and things I could get wrong. After much discussion with my wife Sum, who is also doing Kenzai, we settled on pizza and a cheeky glass of wine. The pizza was good, but I was amazed at how quickly it filled me up and I ended up leaving a quarter of it simply because I couldn’t fit it in. Pre-Kenzai, this would be unheard of. It felt good to know my eating habits have changed and that, hopefully, that will carry on after I finish the program.
The wine, on the other hand, was everything I knew it would be and more. One glass became two (but not three, I’m proud to say). I guess this means I could have a relatively junk-food-free future ahead of me, but I’ll always come back to wine. Still, it felt good to be drinking in moderation, to take slow, contemplative sips and appreciate the taste. I guess the point of all this is, Kenzai works. I’m feeling healthier and stronger, and my relationship with food has changed already for the better. I’m proud of all of us for sticking with it this far, and feel motivated for what’s to come!
Sorry I’ve been lazy with blogging this past week. Last week was tough for me. I was working to a work deadline so much of my time and energy was being funnelled into my work. Initially, I was quite nervous about fitting in the workouts, and I must admit, I missed one day (the first time I’ve missed a workout!). As for the rest of the week though, as soon as I was able to carve out a routine for myself, I found the workouts really helped my productivity. I’m a writer, and so much of my job is about making time to get away from the screen to think. I usually do this by taking long walks, cleaning the house, stuff like that. Now I work out. The food too, was helpful because working to measurements is so much easier than wondering, ‘what are we going to have for dinner tonight?’
I guess the lesson I learned was to lean into the workouts/meals instead of away from them. Having said that, I have so much respect for those of you with 9-5 jobs and/or kids. I work from home and have a dog, and I still struggle to fit everything into one day!
Week 2 went really well right up until the end.
The workouts were harder, but I’ve started to feel more fit in other areas of my life as a result. I was walking up a steep hill with my dog recently and I always reach the top puffing and gasping for air, but now I managed to breeze up it. The diet was slightly challenging at times, mostly due to time constraints. Coming into this, I never ate breakfast, so I found I needed to force myself into a routine early on. But then everything was going really well, until the weekend, when friends came to stay. I had a cheeky glass of wine and didn’t weigh out my dinner on Saturday night, but I was careful not to eat salt, sugar etc.
It was funny, I went to bed that night feeling really guilty, but I’d never felt guilty for eating before. I’ve felt guilty for drinking too much plenty of times, but never for eating. I think that’s a good sign. Hope everyone else is killing it and if you’ve had some slip-ups, I hope you’re not too hard on yourself. x
I’m feeling pretty good about the first week. The regular exercise took a bit of getting used. Early in the week, I found myself putting it off, but now I look forward to it each day. I work from home, so naturally have trouble with procrastination, so I think my secret was looking at the work-outs as another form of procrastination. It gets me away from my desk and I get to listen to a podcast while I’m working out. Sure, they hurt, and otter kicks were designed by the devil, and I make a lot of strange grunting sounds that my wife likes to tease me about, but I like how proactive I feel afterwards.
I’m really looking forward to starting the diet this week because I struggled with the ¼ challenge more than I thought I would. Four or five times I simply forgot to leave a quarter, then looked down at my empty plate and felt like a failure, and twice I just flat-out cheated. It really made me re-think food portions and this obsession I have with finishing everything on a plate.
Onward into week 2 we go!
Here we are. Day 1. I’m as nervous as I am excited. Leaving a quarter of my breakfast untouched was much harder than I thought, but it was also kind of empowering and reminded me why I’m doing this. For me, this is not just about getting fit and healthy and losing weight (although that’s a huge part of it), but it’s also about re-accessing my relationship with food and alcohol.
During my twenties, I was one of those jerks who could pretty much eat and drink anything I wanted and still stay (relatively) trim. Now that I’m deep into my thirties, and well on my way to forty, I’ve discovered that eating poorly and being lazy with exercise has consequences, and I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been. It sounds cliche, but I feel like I’m approaching a crossroads. I can keep on going the way I’m going, put on weight, eat greasy food and leave a corpse my pallbearers will struggle to lift, or I can throw everything I have into my health and fitness, learn to appreciate healthy food, and live forever.
Good luck to everyone - it's good to know we're all in this together!