Happy reality: My hip is getting stronger. Frustrating reality: I got fatter, obviously.

Oh boy, oh boy! Guess what?!?!?!

Exciting news! I have made some tremendous progress this week! I was re-introduced to…

LUNGES!!!!! YAYAYAYAYAYA!!!!

photo 2 photo 1

Yeah. That’s right. BODY WEIGHT FORWARD LUNGES!!! BAM! See below for the video shot by my girl Susan at work:

It’s funny when you spend your whole life as a competitive athlete, never having had an injury and then when you stop your sport, you up and have surgery, and hip surgery at that. What am I, 27 going on 80? So here I am standing in the parallel bar contraption, staring at myself in the mirror and I find myself being NERVOUS about taking that step forward, lowering my knee to the ground and pressing off that front foot to come back to standing. I started to move my foot but stopped finding it was a lot harder to initiate this movement than I ever imagined but I did it. I took that first step and it felt so good!!!

For the first time in 2 months my quads were tired, also known as the “jelly” feeling!!! I left PT feeling like I had lifted a million pounds and I felt like a million bucks! I had a hop in my step (with my 1 crutch of course) all the way back to work and I couldn’t wait to show everyone at work what I could do! After a few hours of being high off of my new exercise, I found myself down playing it. I mean who gets excited about body weight lunges? But then I remember what they did to my little hip 2 months ago and remember that for me, body weight lunges are progress and are therefore something to be extremely proud of although I find myself struggling to accept it at times. Trying to not compare yourself to what you once were is really, really hard.

About that comparing…on Tuesday my agent emailed me to tell me Reebok had requested me for a fit modeling job. Hm. Well, I am softer than I was, a lot softer. He said it didn’t matter as long as my measurements (bust, hip and belly) weren’t drastically different, which thankfully they weren’t but what was  I forced to do in addition to those measurements? Body fat. Shit. My go-to guy at work who got me into modeling and has helped me with my dieting and workouts decided it would be a good time to step on the In Body which measures your body fat via bioelectrical impedance.

“ARE YOU SERIOUS?!?!? I haven’t worked out in 2 months and you’re telling me that you want me to step on that devil of a machine that will tell me how fat I got????”

“Well if we are doing measurements we may as well do all of them”, he says as he presents this demonic smile.

I begrudgingly got on the damn thing. As all my clients and I know, this stupid machine can seriously make or break your day. I step on it and my weight is 135 lbs. A whole 10 lbs heavier than the last weigh in which was some time in October. I try to make the excuse that I am wearing long pants and that has got to be at least a pound. Get a grip Kara. I grab the handles and he enters my information, pushes the button and that stupid calming music comes on that is really not calming at all as I wait in anxiety stricken anticipation to know the results.

I hear the ding that indicates it’s all over. Judgement time. I don’t want to look down and get that feeling of frustration that I know I am about to feel but I have to look…23% body fat. I have never in my life been above 21% body fat and for a brief moment I feel absolutely disgusting especially because the last time we had done my measurements I was around 14%. I shouldn’t be surprised considering I went on a cookie eating frenzy after surgery. I seriously should have been called the cookie monster.

The beauty of this machine, however, is that it also tells you how much muscle mass and fat mass you have. Being one to look at the positive in every situation I decided to focus on the good news in all of this. I have lost 1 lb of muscle mass, 1 lb! That’s it! But then, just to ruin my moment of happiness, I am told how much fat mass I gained…oh dear God. I have gained 10 lbs of fat. Do you know what that looks like???

5-pounds-of-fat-5-pounds-of-muscle

Now multiply that by 2. Look at the difference between fat and muscle. Ignorance truly is bliss. As I walk away from that back room where reality hit, I can’t stop saying, “Ten pounds of fat. Ten pounds!” and I can’t stop thinking about it the rest of the day…or right now.

But to be honest, I am not that upset about it. I am just in shock because that’s a rather large amount of fat. Thank heavens that it distributed evenly and didn’t just inhabit my stomach or my saddle bags or my bingo arms also known as my imperfections. These body parts I have called my imperfections that I learned to love before surgery seem to no longer be imperfections but simply a part of me. I look different, that much is clear and I don’t always like how I look right now but that’s life. Tough shit. It’s to be expected and there isn’t too much I can do about it besides remain positive and keep doing my PT exercises as I am cleared to do them.

I love my body. I love my body. I love my body. But wait, my body does not define who I am as a person. No one likes me any less because I am a “chub scout” as my go-to nicknamed me. My character, my attitude, how I treat myself and others defines who I am as a person. I can’t repeat enough how much this whole thing has changed me and how I wouldn’t change where I am for all the chocolate chip cookies in the world. Every day is a new day and every day I get stronger in my hip, my mind, my heart and my attitude. I made it 2.5 hours without my crutches today at work before it spasmed. That felt amazing. Walking around without crutches. Heaven. My left hand and shoulder were glad for the break.

As I left PT on Friday, I was told I get to do step ups next week. Step ups!!! Yippee!!!!! Small accomplishments become big ones if you approach every day with perseverance and enthusiasm.

“Perseverance is born out of affirming each small accomplishment along the way to a larger goal.” – Bob Greene

 

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