Sunday, July 10, 2011
Yesterday got off to a rocky start. During a morning walk with DH and Lucy, my back began to threaten me. When we got home, it went into full spasm. I was not a happy camper.
By the afternoon, though, I felt better, and went for a swim. Only did a few laps, but it felt good. When I filled in my nutrition tracker at the end of the day, I was pleased to see that I had stayed within my ranges. It's easy, when I'm laid up on the couch and in pain, to over-eat; glad to see that I controlled myself yesterday. All in all, it ended up being a pretty good day.
Today, I'm feeling fine. And, I want to make it a really GREAT day!
Ever since the BLC ended on Wednesday, I've been neglecting my workouts. Not entirely -- I've walked every day, I think (got lazy with my tracking, so I'm not completely sure -- may have missed one day), but I know I haven't been doing my strength training. And, as yesterday's back spasm reminded me, I haven't been doing my back exercises, either.
My eating has been ok, but not great. I'm proud of the fact that, while I walked into the Starbuck's at the mall the other day and perused the selection of pastries, I also walked out again...without so much as a cup of coffee. It helped that they had calorie counts posted along with the outrageous prices of their muffins and scones...yikes!
Still, I've been eating too many carbs and not enough freggies, and pushing the upper limits of my ranges. So, today, I want to start fresh. I want to make the choices that will make today a truly extraordinary day, to be followed by many more extraordinary days.
Here's my game plan:
* Plan out today's meals, including snacks, putting it all in the tracker ahead of time
* Walk with Leslie for 45 minutes
* Do my lower-body ST routine and back exercises!
* Plan the week's meals and make a grocery list, including at least 6-7 freggies a day
* Swim this afternoon, doing at least 10 minutes of gentle laps (preferably 20!)
* Get 8 hours of sleep tonight
* Basically, get back to doing everything I did during the BLC-16!
During the BLC, I burned a minimum of 300 calories a day and tracked it; I will continue to track my fitness minutes and calories burned each day as if I were still doing the BLC. I will also continue to track my calories in, # of freggie servings eaten, and sodium & potassium intake each day, just as I did before. I will report my results on my Pixie BLC thread, just as I've done for the past 12 weeks.
It may seem overly regimented to some, but the past few days have shown me that I need the structure that the BLC provided me. It all comes down to choices: I can choose to work out for at least 30 minutes first thing in the morning, or I can choose to put off exercise each day to the point that I never quite get around to it. I can choose to plan healthy meals each day, or I can choose to get lazy with my eating habits again. I can choose to "take a break" from Sparking, and thereby lose the momentum I've enjoyed over the past 12 weeks, or I can choose to continue to do what has been working so well for me thus far.
Life is all about the choices you make. Day by day, I will choose to make good ones. Beginning with today.
Saturday, July 09, 2011
You think I'd learn.
Over and over and over again, I make the same foolish mistake.
Sometimes, I don't even realize I'm doing it until later, when the pain sets in.
Yesterday, it was kind of obvious. But, by the time the pain set in this morning, I had forgotten my moment of stupidity yesterday...
MY BACK: You know this is a bad idea.
ME: Oh, stop your whining! It's been more than 6 months since surgery -- you can handle this!
MY BACK: That's what you always say. And you always end up regretting it.
ME: Well, this is different. If I don't help my son get that desk out of the truck, someone might steal it. Besides, I hear thunder...I don't want his new desk to get rained on!
MY BACK: That desk isn't worth stealing. Besides, when's the last time it rained around here?
ME: But, it's THUNDERING!
MY BACK: Doesn't mean it's gonna rain. Not here in drought-stricken Houston. Anyway, it's not worth hurting me again.
ME: I'm not going to hurt you! The desk isn't even heavy!
MY BACK: Yeah, right. That's what you said when you moved the Big Red Chair to vacuum under it. And you remember what happened THAT time...!
ME: Well, that was a few months ago. You've had plenty of time to heal, so hush up and suck it up! I have a desk to move inside!
MY BACK: Well, don't say I didn't warn you...
I felt fine when I got up this morning. When DH and I headed out on a walk, I noticed a twinge in my hip. "Darned bursitis!", I thought. Then, as our walk continued, I began to feel The Pain. By the time we got back home, it was unmistakeable.
And, when I went to sit down on the couch, it was unbearable.
Thank goodness for an in-house doctor! He drugged me up, set me on the couch with an ice pack and instructions to get up and walk around the house every 15 minutes or so, and then headed into work.
A few hours later, I felt fine. A tad woozy from the muscle relaxant, but otherwise fine.
I did my back extensions. The ones I'm supposed to do every day, but haven't. For days.
I'm what my husband refers to as "a non-compliant patient".
And so it goes, time and time again. I feel my back SHOULD be all better, so I act as though it WERE all better. But, it's not.
And until I come to terms with that truth, and behave accordingly, it never will be.
Thursday, July 07, 2011
Now that BLC-16 is over, I find myself in a position where I no longer have someone else putting challenges in front of me each day and holding me accountable to be doing what I know I MUST do to lose weight and regain my health.
For 12 weeks, my Pixies were there for me, cheering me on and giving me challenges that required my eating more freggies and logging in more fitness minutes than I would have on my own. And, the results of those challenges is evident in the B&A pics I posted in yesterday's blog, as well as the number on the scale: I dropped 10.4 pounds during those 12 weeks! Sure, it was a slower loss than I would have liked, but it was consistently a LOSS, and at a healthy rate of half a pound to a pound a week on average. There was some angst regarding the scale for a few weeks, but everyone here on SP helped me to come to terms with that issue and eventually overcome it.
So now I'm on my own. Only, I'm NOT! Because, even though I don't have a formal challenge to keep me motivated each week, I still have all the knowledge that I gained during the past 12 weeks; I know what I need to do, and I know I can do it. And, if for any reason I find myself struggling to do it, I still have all my Pixies and other SparkFriends right here, ready to lift me up and cheer me on for as long or as often as I need it!
In just nine short weeks, BLC-17 will be starting up. When that day comes, I will be at least 5 pounds closer to my goal. The scale may wind up telling a different story (I know how fickle that scale can be!), but for the next 9 weeks I will continue to log in my nutrition and fitness and do all the the things that I learned to do in the Pixie Forest to continue the downward trend towards my goal.
And you are welcome to come give me a and/or as needed 'til I get there!
Wednesday, July 06, 2011
Today brings to a close my 12-week journey with the BLC-16 challenge. When I began this journey, I had been on SP for almost exactly one month. I had been making progress, but was frustrated by the restrictions placed on me by back surgery at the beginning of the year. Here's the blog I posted on Day 1 of the BLC-16: www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
During the course of the past 12 weeks, I have learned to eat even more freggies than I had been (up from 4-5 a day to at LEAST 6-7!), and developed exercise routines that keep my metabolism stoked without straining my back (most of the time -- I still have a tendency to "over-do", but am learning to rein myself in when necessary!). I have developed friendships with some of the most fun and motivating women I could ever have hoped to meet (I HEART my Pixies!!), and learned SO much from all of them! And, of course, my body has changed considerably since April 11, as evidenced by both the scale and the tape measure:
APRIL 11, 2011:
Pant size: 14
JULY 6, 2011:
Pants size: 8 (barely, but there!)
Looking back even farther, to when I had already dropped from my heaviest weight of 173 to 167 (a weight loss that I can attribute to nothing more than going to work at a jewelry store, where I was on my feet and walking all around the store all day!), you can see what a dangerous place I had been, health-wise:
APRIL 29, 2010:
Pant size: 14 (pushing 16!)
Today's numbers are indicators not only of a better-looking figure but, more importantly, a move away from Metabolic Syndrome and its accompanying life-threatening conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol and heart disease. My total cholesterol and glucose levels are both down significantly; while I may always be on Lipitor due to a family history of high cholesterol, I expect to be taken off my diabetes medication when I have my annual physical this fall!
The pictures don't tell as dramatic a story, to my eyes, as the numbers do, but here they are:
I wish I had some good "before" pics from when I was at my heaviest weight, but I did a really good job of avoiding the camera back in those days!
So, where to go from here?
Well, now that I've become addicted to exercise and freggies, I expect I'll just keep on losing weight until I decide it's time to go into maintenance mode! I began the 100 Push-Ups Challenge on Monday ( hundredpushups.com/index.html ). I've been asked to co-captain the Light Blue Bombshells team for the BLC-17 (beginning in early September -- watch for the opening of sign-up next month!), so I look forward to making even more new SparkFriends and learning (and teaching!) more great lifestyle-improving tips and tricks. Until then, you'll still find me here each day, logging in my meals and fitness minutes and cheering on the rest of you who are accompanying me on this journey, as we continue to "run with perseverance the race marked out for us"!
Tuesday, July 05, 2011
This morning, I was reading an article by Jimmy Pena in the July issue of Guideposts magazine. I had no idea who this author was, but was captured by his remembrance of something C.S. Lewis once wrote: "You don't HAVE a soul, you ARE a soul. You HAVE a body". Pena went on to say, "The point of fitness isn't physical perfection. It's taking care of this body given to us by God just as we treasure all the rest of his gifts".
As I continued to read the story, I learned that Pena was the co-founder of the website PrayFit.com. The name rang a bell...I'd heard of it before, and been meaning to go check out the website, but so far hadn't done so. Seemed I was getting a little God-nudge this morning.
PrayFit.com is dedicated to the development of both body and soul; to build spiritual fitness as well as physical fitness to the glory of God. As Pena states in the article, "Our bodies are a precious gift from God. We live better, we love better, we serve better when we honor that gift. When you look at it that way, it's not a question of how to climb Everest, but why we should try."
On days when I'm having trouble finding my motivation to do my workout or take the time to make a healthy meal, I hope to remember why I should try.
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