I am not sure what shifted, but I feel ready to make that final push towards my fat loss goal. I’ve been holding steady for months, but didn’t feel ready to commit 100% again to losing. Maybe it was the catharsis this project has brought me, but when I went to bed last night I felt excited about a more strict diet regimen and a new exercise plan. I’m feeling fired up. I’ve been here before – a new plan in mind, a moment of getting fed up and ready for change, the excitement and motivation that only happens at the beginning of a goal like this. But I also know – this doesn’t last. I reread my Black & White – Meet Gray Post and decided to do a few things differently this time: *Not start off too intense. Fired up or not, I’m still injured and there’s a lot I would love to do in terms of metabolic training but I can’t – or at least I shouldn’t. I have to incorporate some re-hab-ish lower body exercises still, which is sorta lame but I don’t want to end up getting hurt and needing weeks off (a very familiar pattern for me…). *I am not going ignore my recovery practices and I am going to make (and keep) my physical therapy appointments. *This time it’s for me. I am not doing this for a book tour or a press spot – or to soothe some wounded part of my psyche that thinks I need to look a certain way. This is what I want, just for me. No punishment – and no trying to make anyone else happy. *I am mixing it up. I love training hard, fast and heavy. I hate steady state cardio and I can’t remember the last time I did yoga. This time I must mix it up or I will end up overtraining, injured and completely burnt out like I always do. I will do yoga. I will do yoga. I will do yoga. (I need to keep saying that until I believe it.) Life is a mixed bag, full of variety – but sadly we don’t usually see women that way. We categorize them into boxes like ditsy blond or the glasses-wearing nerd. They are fit or they are fat. I know I see trainers and fitness models and think “that’s right”, the way I look is wrong. It’s not so clear cut – may of us, like me, are somewhere in the middle. And that’s ok – in fact it’s great. I’m a doctor but I’m a total goof at home. I love living in Manhattan, but my favorite pair of shoes are my cowboy boots. I love being a sweaty mess after boxing almost as much as I love pink lip gloss. I love going out to see live music as much as I love staying in and reading my physiology textbook. With my workouts though, there’s no variety. And it’s time to mix it up. So here I am, ready to try again. I have hardly cured myself of every negative thought in my head, but spending time facing them over these past 20 days has quieted that damaged voice. My more useful, positive voice is downing her out. The new fat loss regimen will include continuing to be kinder to myself, to work towards loving the body I’ve got – no matter what shape she’s in, and remembering that picture of myself on Day 1 in my little blue bikini: loved, optimistic, happy, confident and tummy hanging out.