BOOKAPHILE   60,004
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Learn lesson, repeat.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

I'm boggled that lessons that I have learned keep sneaking up behind me in disguise and surprising me.

This week the basic lesson I know is: There is not an exact correlation between eating and exercise today and the scale tomorrow. I KNOW that. But I'll always suspect I'd do better if I was "rewarded" or "punished" right away. I suppose I'd make better decisions with that experience... but maybe not.

I made good eating choices and exercised well last week. Most of the week the scale just did tiny little blips up and down on the same 2 numbers. Friday and Saturday there were two bigger steps down. All week I knew I was following the plan, but it's amazing how much more motivated I am to exercise when the scale says I went down!

Will I ever FEEL motivated to continue wholeheartedly with my exercise work no matter what the scale says? When the scale goes up, I have to force myself to work out - and that can take hours.

I am not tempermentally able to stay off that scale! It's just not happening. Repeat after ITSMATT "The scale goes up, and the scale goes down, but mostly it goes down."

May your scale go down this week and give you a shot of motivation to exercise wholeheartedly!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEBRA0818 1/7/2013 6:31AM

    Scale retains power even though I've been advised (like you) dozens of time about how inaccurate a measure it is. Must be part of the weight obsession...

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TRAVELGRRL 1/6/2013 6:35PM

    I totally understand and agree with you! It's like my whole day is determined by that little number. How dumb is that?

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DIANNEMT 1/6/2013 6:03PM

    I was on a LONG plateau last year--it is SO HARD to keep working when it isn't going down. BUT hang in there! It did start moving--when I joined the 5% challenge--and I got to goal!! (Then Christmas hit and I went back up--but it will come off again!)

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New Year's Baseline

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

I wanted to have a baseline set of measurements from the beginning of this year. I also wanted to compare them to where I was last month. I restarted this journey in early November. I got my Fitbit One mid November, and I give a lot of the credit for being ahead of my planned weight loss to the motivation and extra movement that have happened due to that little device.

Since December 1st I've lost:
6.8 pounds (way ahead of the .5 pound per week I was planning for - EVEN OVER CHRISTMAS celebration time!)
5.25 inches over just the bust/waist/hip measurements.

I now fit into jeans that are the next size down in the same brand I was wearing. 2 weeks ago when I tried them on, they were too tight to wear comfortably. Now they are comfortable, and the others are so big in the waist, I'd have to poke out my stomach to keep them up where they are supposed to be.

I'm feeling emoticon ! I'm over half way to the goal I set.

I still need to get strength training into this mix, I think I may join the January Jumpstart Fitness challenge, but I haven't looked at all the possibilities yet, so that may change. (My job for today: decide how to add strength training to my routine and begin.)

Best wishes to you as you head into 2013 determined to get fit and planning to get there sensibly!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MICKEYH 1/2/2013 8:20PM

    Congrats on your success in toughest holiday season. You've got a very strong determination or a will power. Keep up a good job.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KANOE10 1/2/2013 9:28AM

    Great job of losing 6.8 in December in the holidays no less. That is the way to go.
Good luck adding strength training. It helps tone those muscles.

How nice your clothes are getting loser!



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SWEETYOUNGTHING 1/1/2013 4:50PM

    Excellent! I love my Fitbit as well. congrats and keep up the great work, Pat

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ROCKMAN6797 1/1/2013 2:33PM

    emoticon

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TRAVELGRRL 1/1/2013 12:07PM

    Wow, girl, you are on a roll! Imagine losing weight between Christmas and New Year's Day -- talk about beating the odds!

I know you will be just as successful in 2013 as you have been at the end of 2012. Keep Sparking!!!

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Self-image lags

Thursday, December 27, 2012

I find it interesting that when I was in high school and gaining weight the first time, the image I had of myself was slim even when I wasn't. When I've been heavy for a time (until it seemed normal)and have begun losing weight, I find I've still thought of myself as heavy. This time is no exception. ( I plan on this being the LAST time I have to make this adjustment!) There is a lag in my perception of myself between what I have considered my normal size and what I am now.

I've lost about half the extra weight which has burdened me. (about 15 pounds.) People are noticing enough to comment now. Yet I catch myself thinking I'm still at my heaviest. Certain styles that aren't flattering on my large self are quite acceptable when I'm smaller, but I'm still avoiding them subconsciously. Certain activities which make me feel I stand out in a negative way when I'm "size large me" are merely mischievous/ energetic/ adventurous in "size small me."

I've never really thought about how long it takes for the mind to catch up to the new reality of a smaller, fitter body. I didn't take note before. It must take some time, but how much? I wonder whether this lag bears any part in weight re-gain? I do want to short-circuit that!

Those of you who have maintained for some time, Did you notice this lag? If so, how long before mind and body both believed you were the new size? How long before it was "normal," and you didn't have to struggle to see yourself as you are? Thanks for sharing!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KANOE10 12/29/2012 9:51AM

    When I first lost weight, I would keep wearing clothes in a looser bigger size. When I finally settled on my goal, I started buying clothes that actually fit me in a smaller size.
At first I would obsess on the way home, thinking what happens if I gain the weight back in a few months and can't fit these clothes? I also worried about styles and felt that I did not understand the new clothes styles as I had spent many years just buying clothes to hide in with dark colors.
In this past year I have calmed down. I enjoy clothes of many styles and colors. I have stopped worrying about whether I will look fat in an outfit.
There are days when I look at myself as thin..many more as time goes on.
However, there are days when I feel fat because my weight might be up over my goal.
I still can worry if I think clothes feel tight..that I am gaining.

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WATERMELLEN 12/27/2012 6:14PM

    That lag thing still jumps out and bites me from time to time . . . even though I lost the first big whack o' weight more than 10 years ago, and the "little bump up" more than 3 years ago . . .

I'm not sure if I'll ever take my current body shape and size for granted. Still sometimes surprised when I see "me" in a reflection and I'm smaller than anticipated . . .

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AMARILYNH 12/27/2012 12:35PM

    I have totally noticed this lag! I've been maintaining for a little over a year and I still find myself reaching for a 12 when I try on jeans. But I have to say its MUCH nicer to find the jeans are too big than (as I've done quite often over the years) having to go back for a bigger size.

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BOOKAPHILE 12/27/2012 12:32PM

    I'm not really talking about remembering how I was as much as being trapped seeing myself that way now, even though I've changed. Are you choosing styles that were what you would have chosen when heavy when that's not what looks good on you now? (Maybe that's more pertinent to women's styles, I guess.) Are you inhibiting your responses to things because you feel huge inside even though you aren't?

I want to know if/when my self image will reflect the current state of my body.

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ROCKMAN6797 12/27/2012 11:51AM

    I don't think that I have ever lost this lag. I am still amazed when I can button a pair of size 34 jeans or wear a size medium shirt! While I can see that I have lost the weight (and kept it off for nearly three years!) my mind still remembers the "bigger me." Quite honestly, I don't think I ever want to forget this part of my life as it provides me the "spark" to continue living the healthy life!

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BUSYGRANNY5 12/27/2012 10:55AM

    Interesting blog.... I've lost a good deal of weight and yet still find my self looking at clothes that are for the "bigger" me... my daughter frequently reminds me that I'm not that size anymore, yet I tend to gravitate toward the larger/bagger/billowing clothes... getting better though....

I'm anxious to see the responses of others!

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The Problem of Abundance

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

These past two days I've been thinking about why I feel "deprived" during Christmas, Thanksgiving, Easter and any other extended family eating time of the year - even when I'm not "hungry."

Using Sparkpeople to track my food and exercise, I know what I need to consume to lose the extra weight. I'm not usually hungry. Where do these feelings of deprivation come from?

I'm coming to understand that the difference is the ABUNDANCE of MANY kinds of food. I can't even eat just a taste of all of them without going over my calorie range. They don't show up the rest of the year, so they are special in my mind. There are only a few I don't like.

During a normal day I have just 2-5 components to a meal. On Christmas Eve there were choices to be made from 10 meal components and 12 (!) different desserts (not large amounts of each, but requiring decisions or mindless eating.) We have four households contributing to this meal, and some of the desserts are a sharing of what their friends have also shared with them during the last week.

I'd love to taste things I'm not familiar with to know if I'm interested in getting that recipe. But I don't want to spend my limited calories on something I don't know tastes good. It's a problem.

I really don't know how to make this much easier as long as it's an organized pot-luck that isn't at my home. I can't tell everyone that they can't bring or eat their favorites because it will tempt me. I did reduce the number of dessert items I brought by over half this year. It didn't seem to make a dent in the abundance of that table. I guess I'll just have to repeatedly gear up my motivation to be fit, reserve some extra calories ahead of time, and get back to my regular routine the next meal.

How do YOU handle situations like these?

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

_LINDA 12/26/2012 11:35PM

    I so know what you mean. The problem is my Mom does the overabundance. She gets all kinds of food ready hoping my brother and sister and their families will come, but something comes up and they can't all make it, or not all of them, and she is stuck with all this food, so it goes home with me and I have three or four days of 4,000 calorie leftoversto eat before they spoil. My little freezer is already packed with my healthy stuff and I have no room for anything more. Makes it a royal pain. Because I am single and don't cook, she feels she is helping me out, but in the ned I prefer my raw vegetarian food.

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ROCKMAN6797 12/26/2012 7:26PM

    You are right it can be very difficult. I think the best that you can do is not deprive yourself but do limit what you do put in your mouth. I am not a big desert eater so I can easily skip those but the homemade dishes can be quite tempting so I try to taste a little of each and keep my calories within reason. Believe me, it does get much easier with time.

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PHEBESS 12/26/2012 5:52PM

    I host a holiday party once a year (a Chanukah brunch) and make everything I DON'T make the rest of the year - fried potato latkes. Noodle kugel (pudding) full of sour cream (yogurt), milk, cream cheese, cottage cheese - rich and yummy. Sour cream (yogurt) coffee cake. All the foods DH and I love - made with less sugar, low fat dairy, no-yolk noodles.

I eat moderate portions of whatever I want - focusing on my favorites, and skipping anything I find to be mediocre. (Who needs orange juice or bagels and lox when I can have my noodle kugel?)

And then - this is the key - DH and I set aside one or two portions of our faves, and send everything else home with our friends. We have leftovers for one or two meals, and the rest becomes treats for our friends. We don't want it. We don't need it. The friends really don't, either, except it's a treat for everyone - they all have one or two portions to go, and then it's GONE. No more temptation. No food in the fridge yelling out to be eaten. We're forced to go back to "normal" in a day.

I think the key to abundance is SHARING that abundance - and then going back to ENOUGH.

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SLENDERELLA61 12/26/2012 4:33PM

    Interesting blog. I'm trying to figure out why I don't feel deprived.

Our house has been filled with junk food for weeks and weeks now. When I was losing weight 4 years ago, I limited the junk food, treats, and even high calorie healthy foods like nuts allowed in my house. My family rebelled. I have come to realize that it doesn't matter what is in my house, what matters is what goes in my mouth! Having junk food around all the time, some of it disgusting like PopTarts, and some of it homemade delicacies, means that the eating events are not all that different from my everyday existence. I still keep focused on what goes in my mouth.

Right now my motivation is high and I'm not really tempted. I know that when I am tired, and hungry, and frustrated, I'll need to be extra careful. And if I slip, I'll have to work really hard to re-establish good restraint. Sometimes I have just one or two chocolates. Yesterday I had one bite. It was enough.

I really do not feel deprived. When there are healthy things to fill me up and make me feel good, I am okay. Having shrimp and red raspberries and portabello mushrooms and popcorn as my treats are just as good. For the most part, the chocolate and pie don't taste as good as I remembered them.

If I figure out something that might be helpful to you, I'll let you know. I'm thinking that 2 or 3 years ago I might have been feeling deprived at holidays. (This is my 4th year of healthy living at Christmas.) Maybe it just takes more time on maintenance.

Best wishes for growing to love healthy living -- and giving up the feelings of deprivation!! Fitness is better than any treat!!!

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TIFFANIE150 12/26/2012 12:48PM

    I am like watermellen. If I overeat once, it's the trigger effect that gets me. I get on a downward spiral real quick. I'm finding out that I need to abstain for best results. But, that's just me right now. Who knows what the future will hold.

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KANOE10 12/26/2012 11:08AM

    Great blog about abundance..or overindulgence. The holidays do bring out an abundance of food. I like the way you pointed out that there were so many more dishes at those meals..so many more snacks and deserts. Everyone has their special holiday foods that they want to share.

My personal solution this year was to cut way way back on what I served. I did not make all of the deserts and appetizers and side dishes that I normally made. I also got rid of the many food gifts I was given.

Great insights... emoticon

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CTMOM2KIDS 12/26/2012 10:13AM

    You are so right! You have made some insights here. It is about the abundance. I had to make choices yesterday. There were so many wonderful and delicious things on the table but I had to choose. I knew I could not eat it all, so I chose. There's lots of leftovers so today I will choose something I did not eat yesterday.

It's all about choices, isn't it?

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WATERMELLEN 12/26/2012 10:06AM

    Christmas Day I ate a moderate breakfast, some appetizers (shrimp, raw veggies, one pasty-type) and then logged Christmas Dinner as 1400 calories. (There are several "Christmas Dinner" listings on the SP nutrtion tracker . . .I think this is the heftiest!!). Had a moderate serving of everything on the table. My brother-in-law brought his fantastic key lime pie and I had a piece of that. Skipped the raspberry pie I had on offer myself.

I have used the SP member-generated "Christmas Dinner" grouping now for several years. How accurate is it? Not sure, but for one day of the year, that's OK. With the "grouping", I clocked in under 2000 calories for the day and high on the fats, and I think that's pretty fair. . Still way too much for me . . I can eat just 1400 calories a day tops to maintain . . . . . but OK.

Woke up feeling "too full". Made coffee, will postpone my first meal for a bit. Otherwise, today I'm back to my regular eating pattern. Will make soup. Will eat salad and fresh fruit. Will head to the gym very soon: would like to ski (we need more snow). .

I can't eat a whole whack of desserts or appetizers of whatev even one time, not just because the calorie count would be too too high but also because for me that particular aspect of "abundance" is triggering . . . potentially days and weeks of out-of-control eating. I know that about me. So the leftovers are all stashed in the freezer . . . where those so inclined can rescue and defrost a single serving -- and if they end up going straight into the garbage eventually, so be it.

Hate waste. Hate expanded waist even more. So that's how I cope, not optimal but . . . working for me.

And: have to find different non-food ways of enjoying abundance. Because that experience of abundance is key to contentment, that's for sure!

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MUNCHNIT 12/26/2012 10:00AM

    Great insights!

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Report on Family Christmas Eve gathering

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Yesterday I had a plan for getting through the family gathering (LOTS of food!) without damaging my Sparkpeople journey. I was not going to bring as many desserts. I was going to eat reasonable portions. There would be a few tastes of high calorie favorites because I had eaten less earlier in the week, so I had a few extra calories I could spend.

Here is what happened:
I brought a batch of cookies and some fudge, as planned. I didn't eat them. (I did bring home more than I had wanted to!)
I had reasonable portions of ham, scalloped potatoes, fruit salad and some carrot sticks with water to drink.
I had 1 medium potato chip with a taste of clam dip (a favorite I don't provide for myself anymore.)
I had a small clump of homemade Caramel Corn.
I had half a cookie my daughter made and was raving about. (I split it with my other daughter.)

I'm pleased with that. It was a large calorie meal, but I didn't go over my calorie range for the day. This morning my scale shows a loss of .2 of a pound.

What I'm not so confident about:
Many of the presents from younger members of the family were homemade cookies or chocolates.

What I plan to do:
The excess cookies I brought home will go into the freezer if I like them.
The chocolate things I don't love will be eaten by my husband or migrated into the compost bin.
The leftover fudge I made, which I do like, will be stored in a container in the fridge where I won't automatically see it, my husband can eat it, it can be offered to guests, and I can enjoy a piece once in a while when I plan for it.

Whew! I think I passed this test!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WATERMELLEN 12/26/2012 10:43AM

    There, you did great -- it's just the exhaustion of will power under repeated assaults!!

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PURPLE180 12/25/2012 3:29PM

    Awesome job. emoticon

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ROCKMAN6797 12/25/2012 2:55PM

    emoticon

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PJBONARRIGO 12/25/2012 10:24AM

    You did pass the test! An awesome, workable, sane plan! i'm going to use some of your ideas. emoticon

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