Monday, August 30, 2010

Final Post

The flesh has changed but more than that, as my PCP comrades understand, my body is my own again. In the first picture, which is I admit a fairly dreadful picture, I was so ashamed to be "seen in this body." As if it were not even mine. Yes I had been working on losing weight, and had lost over 25 pounds in the year previous. But what has changed is not just my weight loss but who I am.

This program has brought me back to myself.

Through a combination of common sense diet, simple (and hard) exercise, and the support of incredible people who live around the world, I was able to make decisions that lead me back to life.

Look at this elegant babe:

Naoko, my sweet age mate.
Royce, shooting star blazing and gone.
Elena, elegant striving New Yorker.
Jenny, honest, beautiful yearning young woman.
Kowhai, down under loyal, plain speaking achiever.
Tara, mother, eloquent thinker, posting essays each time.

Patrick, stern Zen master.

My eternal thanks for walking this journey with me.

May the road rise to meet us
May the wind be always at our back
May you remember that we are never alone
while we still have the courage to reach out
To strive for the Peak.

Much love,


Sunday, August 29, 2010

Day 90

Wonderful day. Church went great... Vermont this time of year is about as beautiful as life gets.

Didn't have time to take pictures. Or didn't want to quite end. Not quite yet. Putting it off a little while.

I'll do it tomorrow.

This has been a splendid journey.

Thanks to Patrick for offering leadership and wisdom. Thanks to all of my companions who shared so much of their lives with me for the summer. Thanks to myself for doing it even though I am not exactly an athlete.

Biking was supposed to be my activity and I've only recently been riding.
Yesterday I was riding it and I got off and noticed, for the first time (I've had the bike for two years) that the word "TOPEAK" is on the back of it.

To Peak.

How wild is that?

I'll write more (you know me.....full of it) tomorrow when I post the final pictures.

Thinking of you all, dotted around this blue world, brave and I think, tonight, smiling.


Friday, August 27, 2010

Friday Night

I can feel us all stepping back slightly, after being so caught up in this new reality. Preparing to reengage in the world.

Had a bone density scan today. I have very healthy, strong, big bones.

Thinking of you all as we coast (every single one of us) to Victory.

With Gratitude.


We're almost done. At least together.

Exercises are excruciating. Yahoo.... At least I can be happy about failing.

I reach failure quickly. My special talent.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Oh dear. Took pictures today. Thought if I went out on my little porch in natural lighting it might be better. It isn't! I have lost weight, gotten so much stronger, better cardiovascular health (still a long way to go), gained muscle, lowered cholesterol, and yet I am lumpy and the weight I've lost seems to have left me looking rather....well... older.

Maybe it will take my body a while to adjust. I couldn't even put the other pictures on here. I can see some difference if I look closely, but mostly I see these lumpy thighs and stomach being all weird. My face looks younger, but more wrinkly.

Ah....growing older. Such vanity. So hard for women. So much of our worth seems to be based in our ability to look young and sexy. I've got to face and accept that I am losing and will lose that kind of power. All right have lost it... I don't look to bad in clothing. Maybe I'll take some pictures with my clothes on. Augh.

Tuesday and the Hill

I rode my bike downtown again! Wow. Two days in a row. It was even easier the second time. On the way up I did stop at a stop sign and this woman was standing there waiting for the bus. I nodded to her as I was catching my breath. She said, "Wow, I can barely walk up this hill" and then the bus stopped and she hauled herself up the stairs and was gone. She was about 50 pounds overweight and I thought about all that extra flesh that she has to carry around. That I used to carry around. And I was so proud of myself as I pedaled up the rest of the hill.


It's a bit nerve-wracking - facing this last week. The exercises are so hard and the days so few. And this strange steady stream of encouragement is about to end. I am planning to continue the program, going back to the second month start and trying to build up my jumping so that in two more months I am at the full level of PCP. I am doing better each day. The shorter rope helps. Pushing myself bit by bit helps. My knees are sore - I feel it going down stairs - and my ankles also have been aching lately. But slowly slowly slowly I am acclimating.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Monday and the Hill

My activity was biking. It was kind of a wild choice as I hardly ever bike.

Today, however, I dragged out my bike and rode all the way down town which is like 10 miles or something! Hey you big athletic people don't be giving me that "big deal only 10 miles" look. Remember I am not a big athlete. I am a big couch potato. Or I was.

Last time I rode downtown I burst into tears crossing the overpass and then had to walk up the BIG hill (both ways) and then took a big big big nap when I came home and promised to never do THAT again.

Today I am off - flying down the sidewalks. Across the overpass. No tears. Very balanced. I ride RIGHT UP THE BIG FRICKING HILL. I imagine Patrick smiling and saying "Ha ha silly woman I knew you could do it."

I cannot believe how much easier it was. On the way back, the hill is bigger and I admit I stopped twice VERY BRIEFY. (I could hear Patrick saying "Hey woman get on the bike and get up the hill cause baby you can do more than you think you can!!!!!!!!!!)

So I got back on the bike and I did it and I was almost disappointed that it wasn't harder. My legs were looking for more.

So much has changed.

I am still somewhat middle aged and lumpy - it may take some time to get some real sleekness back or it may not come at all. I don't know.

But I feel so different inside.

There is a confidence about the way I move, about what I can do that has changed me quite deeply. Yes I still worry but not nearly as much. I don't think I am going to hurt myself if I push or go fast or something.

Honestly I am still far behind where I could be in this program. I do the exercises but not all of the sets. My jumping is improved but I think it is going to take more time for me to get to the level most of you are at now. That's okay.

I started farther back.

This past year I choose life.

These three months pushed the intensity of my choice much farther than I thought I could go. For heavens sakes this is a program that some of my son's college coworkers are doing!! And yet I signed up.



Oh and then I got home and found the list of the last week's exercises which are quite ... can I say...medieval torture like in their challenge...