Mind & Spirit

Family makeover diary: Month 10

Family makeover diary: Month 10

Author: Canadian Living

Mind & Spirit

Family makeover diary: Month 10

Read about this family's wellness journey with Canadian Living magazine and a dream team of coaches.

Just when I was getting into the groove of things, I fall skiing and hurt myself pretty badly. I fall often enough but never with any serious repercussions. But this time I was going a little faster than usual, I caught an edge and couldn't maintain my balance, so I went down hard. My left knee is injured. The doctors are waiting for the swelling to go down so they can determine what the problem is.

The first week, although I had a fair bit of pain, I continued with my exercise activities, but it was at a reduced rate. I went to the gym twice and Sue and I did upper body workouts, no cardio workouts and no weight bearing exercises. Dr. Buchanan and Darren Vine, my physiotherapist, insisted that I not engage in any of the weight bearing exercises. I thought that my knee would heel quickly and I would be back to "normal" in no time. The accident happened on a Sunday and I planned to be skiing on Thursday because we had made plans to ski with friends. I was wrong. I was off work for three weeks.

The second week was a little more discouraging for me than the first. I was tired, my body was tired. I didn't want to go to the gym because my knee hurt. I was tired of staying home, resting my knee. Although there wasn't too much pain, I was still uncomfortable.

I learned something very interesting this month. Despite the injury, the good news for me was that I continued to lose weight. This was a bit of a surprise because I thought the exercise was the piece of the makeover that mattered the most for me. Although I didn't exercise as much this month, I continued to measure my food, and eat really well and I lost 6 pounds. It was a bit of an "ah ha" moment: eat properly, even though I had reduced activity and continue to lose weight.

Page 1 of 2 -- Read thoughts from George, Ria and Stefi on page 2

It finally happened; I broke through my weight plateau! It is incredible how difficult it is to just progress to one less pound. I had worked diligently at attempting to continue the weight loss, but the last several weeks, I had not lost even one pound.

Besides the food journals that I continued to keep, I took Despina's lead and started to measure my food, ensuring that I kept to 4 oz of meat at lunch and 8oz for dinner. I changed my fruit intake from 3 cups of fruit in the morning to one fruit per meal, including only half a banana. It is difficult to measure the amount of fruit, because in my mind just eating fruit is a good thing, right? Well as I discovered, it's not just the kind of fruit, but also the portions! Can you imagine eating only two slices of pineapple with 2 teaspoons of juice, a couple of strawberries and 15 grapes? It was huge to make these changes… and to adjust to this kind of eating and thinking.

My consistent training at the gym really paid off with my skiing. The strength in my legs, my mobility and confidence has provided a truly enjoyable ski season to date. I am looking forward to cycling in couple of months to realize my full potential and push my physical abilities to new levels. It's incredible when the diet, exercise and support from a life coach all combine to give me a level of confidence that is sometimes difficult to describe.

We are nearing the end of our Family Wellness makeover and progressing to a lifelong change of diet and exercise . . . what an adventure!

I started a new semester at school this month. I have 4 new subjects that I am taking now and I am trying to organize myself so that I can work on my assignments and not do them last minute. Cassie has been great helping me organize myself. She talked to me about priorities and making decisions about what is important and needs to be done first.

My Dad bought me a big plastic calendar that I can write on. We posted it on the wall and I use it to note when my tests are and when my assignments are due. This helps me because I can look at the calendar and see what I have to do that month. I think it will really help me.

I am having so much fun snowboarding. I have been taking lessons at Oshawa Ski Club and we have gone a few weekends to Mount St. Louis. I like snowboarding there! Next month we are going to Mont Ste Anne during March Break. We were there last year and I loved it. It will be fun!

February was a fun month for me. I get to ski and do gymnastics all the time. I am skiing every weekend and learning how much fun it is. I went night skiing with my Mom and Dad and Ria. That was so much fun. It is different to ski at night.

I have to work hard with gymnastics now. My competitions start next month. I go to gymnastics 3 times a week and then I practice my conditioning the nights I don't go. I am a little nervous about the competition. It is my first one.

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Mind & Spirit

Family makeover diary: Month 10