It's that time of year again. Lent.
While I'm not Catholic, nor have I ever been Catholic, I find the practice of giving something of meaning up to be a useful one. Sacrifice of items and activities is an age-old belief, one which I think stands well in our modern society. I thought long and hard over what I would give up this year. Last year I chose to live without caffeine for the six weeks of Lent, and it was vastly more difficult than I thought it would be. I was reminded, daily, of what I had sacrificed to my Gods. It was hard, but it was very spiritual as well!
This year, I mulled over giving up online games... coffee again... chocolate... soda... bread... None of these seemed right, though. Then I hit on it: I gave up candy. By this, I mean any non-gum wrapped item - chocolate bars, hard candies, ice cream bars, etc. I will still allow myself a bit of cake for special occasions (mostly because it is a treat I don't abuse at all), but no more wrapped deliciousness. I went out on Tuesday night, "Fat Tuesday" they call it, and bought a single chocolate Valentine heart, which I ate with great gusto on my way to the gym. That was my last one, until Easter Friday. Whew.
What I want to know is, who's the one who put Valentine's Day right in the middle of Lent, when you're supposed to be focused on giving something up to God/dess(es)? Bah. LOL
This year's sacrifice has a secondary benefit to it: it aids me in my fitness quests. I am proud to announce that I have lost a total of 9 lbs since I started this in December. While not up to "Biggest Loser" standards, it's a slow, steady downward slide, the kind that makes nutritionists and dieticians happy. On the 27th, I will be having my body stats done for the Fitness PA competition, and embarassing or not, I will be posting the results here for all to see. For me, it's vastly important to show my progress (or lack thereof), to keep myself motivated.
I even bit the bullet, so to speak, and wore a stretch tank with built in bra, to the gym this week. I have a few of them for when I am very hot in the summer, and working outside. However, the gym has been incredibly hot, lately. So, with my pot belly protruding, I wore my spandex proudly. I'm at that horrible "in between" stage, where my muscles are definitely becoming defined, but my fat hasn't retreated enough that I don't have blubber out front. I know it's getting better, though. Both the numbers on the scale, and my clothes, tell me that I am improving quickly. I'm also lifting heavier weights with more ease.
Life is good.