Helen L.

Helen L.

Kenzai Member
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Feeling great. Day 90 Kenzai Body 3 Graduation Post 

  • Jul 14th, 2018 at 4:18PM

Had a go at writing this earlier around 10 am after getting through the workout and nearly cried...

I am simply amazed to have arrived here finally, after a whimiscal jumping on the program in April because I was fed up of getting out of shape. It has been the hardest program I have completed, doing this while in the fourth month of grief for my mother. I haven't been that active on the blogs; this time round, it was hard to know what to say. I work with words, yet words fail me, so I went to the body.

One person who always seemed to know what to say to help was Ward, from 'let go of the guilt' and 'at least it is carbs, not cocaine or McDonalds' (sorry, Ward for paraphrasing) and I want to thank him sincerely first off.

I also am grateful to all the people who kept looking and commenting and encouraging me to show up, here and at the workouts and in the kitchen. You know who you are. Thank you.

In terms of food, I got over carby cravings in the afternoon and found my way into a solid eating pattern and enjoyed preparing food again. I loved the Base Protein program. I've been a vegetarian for just over a year now and it feels a fundamental part of how I show up in the world. However, until the BP diet, I wasn't sure if I would build muscle and be well...I think my photos show that I did get my protein grams!

One thing about grief is that I felt very tired mentally and physically and I did not have very much left to push into areas where I found tough. I haven't got into pushups or tricep work like I did on other training cycles and much of the diamond pushup century was done on my knees. I am fine with that. I am still shocked that I made it at all - and today it has been 35 degrees in Tokyo (worked out at 8 am!)

Again, the memory of my mum is ever present. Although she suffered a slew of illnesses, she was enthusiastic about my efforts to run and get fit. She herself had enjoyed lifesaving and iceskating as a teenager, so this might be something to enjoy as a way to connect. People don't leave, they become 'present differently', as Hallmarky as that sounds. And I feel that an achievement like KB3 is a good way to pay tribute to the life I was given.

Okay, tears starting again. This whole KB3 has been done through lots of them. And your support. Congratulations to all finishing today!

Deep Gassho.

 
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12 comments

Jonathan K.Jonathan K.Alumni
over 1 year ago

Helen, what a wonderful graduation post and tribute to your mother. Thanks for opening up to all of us on the blogs and sharing your pain and your successes. You’ve definitely come a long way. That smile in your final photo says it all!


    Tracey N.Tracey N.Kenzai Member
    over 1 year ago

    hugs Helen


      Deborah B.Deborah B.Kenzai Member
      over 1 year ago

      What a lovely, heartfelt graduation post. I'm so happy that this journey has helped in more ways than one. Isn't it amazing how getting physical can help us out emotionally? Enjoy your new muscles!!!


        Deepika D.Deepika D.Kenzai Member
        over 1 year ago

        Being part of a program is a wonderful way to keep the mind busy, especially after an emotional setback.
        Kudos to you 👏🏼 Your blogs have been very insightful and caused me to reflect inwards.
        All the best to you! And hope to be teammates again :)


          Peter K.Peter K.Kenzai Member
          over 1 year ago

          That is a brilliant graduation post Helen. And as Jon says a real tribute to your mother. You look brilliant in your final photo. I am a vegetarian and live in Tokyo too. We must swap thoughts on good vegetarian restaurants here!


            Helen L.Helen L.Kenzai Member
            over 1 year ago

            Peter. I just enjoyed a great Nepese lunch at Khana in koenji. They do vegan ramen!

            also, try the app Happy Cow


              Jenny HaddleJenny HaddleKenzai Member
              Assistant Trainerover 1 year ago

              Congratulations, Helen, for making it along the entire journey. Grief is such a strange experience and manifests differently for everyone. I am happy you were able to get in to your body and find a way to continue to deal with the loss of your mother in your own way. You look
              and you are strong, beautiful and capable. Cry whenever and as much as you need! And, find us back here when you are ready to continue on the Kenzai journey. ~hugs!!!~


                Ward WillisWard WillisKenzai Member
                Head Trainerover 1 year ago

                Not a dry eye over here at the Kenzai offices, Helen. We're in awe of your courage and willingness to tackle this training cycle given the very recent loss of your mom.

                KB3 is tough. Wicked tough in fact. Even under the best of circumstances. But you didn't get to start with an even playing field. Sleeplessness. Uncertainty. Emotional eating. A growing sense of dread. A lack of appetite. These are the very real symptoms often experienced by those that grieve the loss of a loved one. They can feel like a tidal wave. And yet, in the face of troubled waters, you dragged out your little row boat, and started paddling out into the rough Kenzai waters.

                Sometimes there were setbacks. More often there were victories. As your body and mind grew stronger, you paddled harder. And now, look at you. Stronger. Leaner. In more control of your nutrition. None of this is to say the grief stops. But without a doubt you aren't the same person that started this journey three months ago. That is an incredible accomplishment!

                It's been an honor to guide you. Be well and remember, just because the program ends, doesn't mean this community of committed yahoos isn't a few keystrokes away. We are. Should the days grow dark, reach out.

                COMPLETE!


                  Helen L.Helen L.Kenzai Member
                  over 1 year ago

                  Thanks Ward and Jenny.

                  I grew up by the sea, the estuary of the Thames. The tidal waters are full of boats, from rowing boatd to big tankers and little fishing smacks, and ... a childhood story read to me was Paddle To The Sea. Boats are an apt metaphor for the Kenzai Challenge.


                    Cora LeeCora LeeKenzai Member
                    Assistant Trainerover 1 year ago

                    Helen, thank you for sharing this graduation post, and also all your blogs and sharing in the last 90 days. How great it is that you an use your body to get over your grief and pain and bring positivity, joy and strength back, and not only that, but to influence the people around you (a.k.a. Your team mates). I agree on the vegetarian/vegan part. I love the Base Protein Diet, have to play along with the carbs a little bit to make sure we don’t over do it, and hey, for those people who said vegans can’t build muscles, we can prove them wrong. =) It has been a pleasure to train with you in the last 90 days and see you around soon.


                      Peter K.Peter K.Kenzai Member
                      over 1 year ago

                      Thanks for the vegetarian tips Helen!


                        Nandini J.Nandini J.Kenzai Member
                        over 1 year ago

                        An absolute honour to have met you on the blogs.... and wishing you all the very best always. Was wonderful to read your heartfelt blogs and that’s what kenzai permits us to do amongst so many other things.


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