The New Girl, Part Two

This is the first blog post from a newer female client at Catalyst. We’ll call her “Mary” (not her real name), and she’s the wife of Jim, who’s story has been published here.
Mary and Jim have been at Catalyst for a few months, but when I asked for their story, she didn’t want to share at first. Now she’s allowing me to tell the story through their eyes.

Very busy time at work, but I promised Coop I’d get this done, so here it goes. I’m not as wordy as Jimmy. I’ll start with the InBody.
Catalyst has a body measurement scale called an InBody. Jimmy said it looks like a rocket ship, but it’s really just a super expensive scale. It gives you a printout of body fat and muscle and water and some other stuff. Of course, when I started, I was just looking at my weight (with one eye closed and with the paper at arm’s length.) That was a scary number. But our coach told me that it was really the weight of the fat that counted, and where I was carrying it. She also said I might gain a bit of muscle in the first month. A few years ago, I wouldn’t have done anything that might cause me to gain weight, but I really have nothing–well, maybe I have everything to lose here. A few more pounds wouldn’t be noticed. I hoped that a bit of muscle might tighten me up a bit. I was way past my “skinny jeans” and couldn’t even cram into my “respectable” jeans anymore.
Jim already told everyone about our first week, and cleaning out our cupboards, and then refilling them. That was a lot easier on him than it was on me. I can’t divulge my job here, but it gets really stressful at this time of year. I’ve been at this job for 13 years (or is it 14?) and I have a coping strategy down: I have coffee on an empty stomach for breakfast, a small salad for lunch, and then a glass of wine or two as soon as I get home. My brain stays sharp in the morning, but then I’m craving something my around 3pm, and usually someone makes a Timmy’s run so I eat a muffin. But as soon as I get home, watch out: I eat cookies, crackers–anything in the cupboard. I justified it. I told myself that my brain needed the carbs. I told myself it all balanced out. I told myself I was trying to stay awake for the kids instead of just going straight to bed after dinner.
That helped me get my work done. But it was also burning a hole in my stomach. I was wondering how many more years I could keep this up: could I make it to retirement? Then I’d worry about retirement. I make more than Jimmy does, bless his heart. I’m the one that worries about these things. Give him his Thursday night pickup game and a couple of beers with his friends, and he’s a happy guy. Nothing really fazes him. Me, on the other hand…I’m a worrier.
All that to say, I was terrified of the InBody. I know, I know–there’s no judgment at Catalyst, yada yada. But when you get that printout, it’s like looking into the mirror for the first time. Scary.
The first few workouts in the Incubator were pretty painful, too. And this is probably a negative way to think, but every time I went home sore, I thought, “This is what I get. I deserve this.” I was pretty rough on myself. The coaches were nothing but positive, but ladies–you know how it goes in your head. Only in hindsight do I see how the negative self-talk, negative “coping” strategy and stress all went together. How do people EVER get out of that? Well, I know how I did.
I’m not writing much about exercise, I know. Next time I’ll talk about barbells and box jumps.