This blog has been a chronicle of my journey from kook surfer to a beginner surfer on the cusp of becoming a beginner-intermediate. It has gone from when my disorder was loud and affecting my everyday life to now when it only pops up if I am “triggered”, but I now have the tools to drag my way up from the well that is the misery of eating disorders.
I’ve become fitter. I’ve developed muscles I could have only dreamed of back when I was fat and unhappy.
I know that I’m fitter. I feel fitter – I am so light on my feet now. I can also see that I am fitter. Who would have thought that I would have muscles? I used to be the weakest person in the room! (Except for my legs. I’ve always had muscular legs because of all the horse riding.)
I picked up a fitness magazine the other week. It contained a ‘test your fitness’ section, so I tested mine. Flexibility was teetering between average and good. I’ve been doing yoga so I’m hoping this will get my flexibility from between average and good to good and possibly very good!
The strength test (how many sit ups can one do in two minutes) I scored exceptionally well. ‘Very good’. I can do 79 sit-ups in two minutes. Take that flabby belly. The core strength is coming through with a win. (Surely this means I’ll have super abs one day right?)
It was a running test. If you’ve read my blog for a while (I know some of you have – much love to you guys xo), you’ll know how much I have pained and agonised over running. I just can’t seem to do it! I do weekly runs with my friend who is a personal trainer and he tells me I am fit – don’t worry – I am fit in other ways. But running! Ohhhh how I wish to conquer it!
Anyway. The test was: run 2.4km (1.5miles) in <12 minutes for ‘very good’, 12-13 minutes for ‘good’, 13-14 minutes for ‘average’ and any longer than 14 minutes was pitifully below average. I put on my running pants, my running shoes, pumped up the volume on my Kings of Leon and hit the pavement. My sinusitis was dreadful that morning. It felt like my throat was trying to strangle my lymph nodes. Guess how long it took me. Am I fit? According to the cardio test, no I am not. I may as well have been sitting on the couch eating Fritos for the last year according to this test. 16 minutes, 29 seconds. Well…I thought…damn, while massaging my throbbing face and the blocked bridge of my nose.
I’ve got some training to do. ‘Matt…’ I needled, to my friend. ‘I need to run 2.4 kilometres in less than 16 minutes and 29 seconds. I need your help.’ So he came over to my house at 6.30 in the morning and we ran together. ‘It sounds like you have a lot of phlegm. Cough it up! That’s why you can’t breathe properly.’ ‘I can’t! It’s constantly there from this stupid sinus issue!’ He suggested I carry my asthma puffer and chew gum while I run to help with the sinus.
So this morning I did. Did I improve my time? Yes! Did I fall into a ‘fit’ zone? NO. I got it down to 16 minutes exactly. And the Ventolin really does seem to help. It may seem like a trivial (unfit) thing to work on, but I have struggled with running forever. I refuse to let it tell me that I am unfit when I have worked so hard to GET fit. Nope. I will beat you running test. I will be over the moon once I hit that ‘average’ mark thank you very much!