Monday, July 25, 2011

“There is a difference between giving up, and knowing when you have had enough.”

I quit. Actually, I quit a week ago, but I wanted to let it settle and make sure it wasn’t an impulsive decision before posting it here. I still train and lift and I intend to keep that up on a perpetual basis, but I quit the prep diet. The funny thing about the sport of figure is that it is essentially a dieting sport not a weightlifting sport. While it is true that to be competitive at it you must have both a solid training regimen and a very specific very restrictive diet plan, 80% of it is the diet.

There are many women out there who make all that work and are successful at it. There are caveats though; I recently ran into a woman I know who competed a year before I did and she said it well. She said that she loves the sport and the industry surrounding it, but that it is a selfish sport because it affects everyone around you. I thought she summed it up perfectly.

By training and dieting to gain the competitive edge I lacked at my first competition I was wiping out everything else in my life. I was really tired, coffee was useless, I was forgetful and lacked the energy to do anything else. At first I thought maybe I was just a wuss and would acclimate to 1,100-1,300 calories a day of very specifically combined and timed macro-specific mini meals, but then people in my life started commenting on my demeanor with concern. They all worded it various ways: “worried about me,” “that I was getting a bit loopy,” “figured you would want to stay in because your diet had you so drained.” It was costing me too much. My son comes first, doing well at school is important to me, I need energy to get my work done, and it is nice to be able to have a social life that includes dining without carting along little 4 oz. Gladwares and staring forlornly at your boyfriend’s or friends’ plates.

During and after my first prep, which will now be renamed my only prep, I started getting lackadaisical about other long-established goals of mine. I started questioning whether I should just quit with a B.A. in Accounting or just take random other classes to fill out a fifth year. I had pretty much moved a Masters off the table. Now that I’ve gotten my wits back about me I’ve become decisive and taken action. I had my major evaluation completed to confirm that I can graduate when I intend to with the class schedule I’ve planned. I also visited the Assistant Director of the MBA program to find out what I can do now to strengthen my application and undo the damage I caused to my transcript when I crashed after Ecup. Everything looked rosier than I had expected so I’ll be spending my free time before fall quarter starts studying to take the GMAT. That’s not something I could have done if I had continued on with figure. I’ve reordered my priorities and am much happier with myself now.

This does mean the end of Figure Mommy though. I’ve become pretty affectionate towards my blog so I’m sorry to say that. Part of me is tempted to cross out the “Figure” in my title graphic and rename the blog “Fit Mommy” sporadically posting tales / tips on maintaining / achieving a fit physique while balancing life with kid(s), but I’m not sure if the candor or quality would be there as that is after all a rather common theme.

For me, the whole point of my alter ego (for lack of a better term) Figure Mommy was to be rare, or most optimistically an exception to the rule. When people used to ask me, “how do you do it all?” I used to smile and minimize my obligations to deflect the compliment. The accurate answer is, “I can’t.” Sometimes saying it is the healthiest direction to take.

I saw this saying in my Google+ feed, the original author is unknown to me, but thank you to E.L. for posting it. I hope you don't mind my borrowing and embracing it =)

“There is a difference between giving up, and knowing when you have had enough.”

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