Friday, January 21, 2011
Actually, at least 90% of them understand better than you think.
But most of that 90% don't understand what it's like to be THIS overweight.
You know better. First of all, there is a large portion that DOES understand what it's like to have more than 60-80-or even 100 pounds to lose. Second of all, who do you think you are?
I'm me. And nobody understands me.
What do you think makes you so special? How is your journey so much different than theirs? Why is your story more unique? Don't you have respect for the struggles they have face, especially when so many of those struggles are the same or, at least, similar.
Well, it's just... I'm not saying I'm special or anything... but I do have a certain unique set of circumstances. I mean, how many of them started out at over 400 pounds?
Quite a few of them actually.
Yeah, well all of them are skinnier than me now...and it was easier for them than it was for me.
Oh, now I know you must be joking. That's ridiculous!
But I have so much on my plate right now. Two jobs, looking for a new job, a better one, plus the husband and the two kids and the friend's wedding coming up and...
And tell me, what did you do yesterday?
I worked both jobs and I had to drive home in the horrible snow, nearly sliding off the road several times.
*rolls eyes* You slid twice, MAYBE 3 times, and you were never in danger of going off the road. And, besides, what did you DO at those jobs.
I wrote my article really quickly last night! *proud*
Okay, I'll give you that. You worked efficiently at your second job. And the first?
Well there was that big fiasco with the co-worker. I had to do her job as well as mine!
And exactly how log did it take you to do both jobs?
*hangs head* About 2 hours total.
Out of 8? Two hours, out of eight...is that correct?
And, tell me...is there ANYTHING you could have done with those other 6 hours to better yourself? A workout perhaps? Maybe a few plans for next week? Menu planning? Anything?
Well, I did take care of my student loan stuff.... Oooh! And I went to the grocery store to buy new lettuce when I realized mine was bad. I could have gone to Wendy's for a cheeseburger like I wanted.
That's right, and that was great choice. But, speaking of that, what else did you buy at the store?
A single serving Skinny Cow ice cream.
*sigh* Okay! FINE! I bought a thing of chicken salad and proceeded to eat more than half of it, making 2 sandwiches when I should've only had one, and a chocolate bar, which I ate not long after, even though I already had salad and ice cream and 2 chicken salad sandwiches... THERE! Are you happy?
The question is...are you?
*a tear rolls down her cheek* No. I'm not. I could have done better.
And the time constraints of work and family...?
I could have done a workout at my desk, or walked around the building on breaks, or done some ST - crunches, squats, push-ups. I could have put on the Kinect when I got home and had fun with Hubs with that game. I had opportunities. I could have done better.
And what did you do instead, when you got home?
I stayed up too late watching TV and eating 3 bowls of chili with cheese and crackers in it... *breaks down sobbing* I'M SO SORRY!!! I CAN CHANGE, I SWEAR!
You and I both know you can change. You did. You were on it for so long and lost 85 pounds. And then...well, what happened?
Things got crazy stressful and everything started piling up and it wasn't exciting or easy anymore.
But was it always exciting and easy?
No...but I don't know that I ever remember it being this hard.
*confused* What do you mean? How could it have gotten more difficult? That doesn't make sense.
Actually, it does... sit down and let me tell you about it...
...in the beginning, it was new.
I kept going because I knew hard would fade away and because I could get away with doing so little and getting a lot of return from it.
...and then the races started...and it was good.
I struggled through each one, each time learning a lesson about myself. I went from barely walking, to half-running a 5k. I raced with friends and family and really enjoyed the praise that came for doing what I was doing even though I was still so big.
...and then winter came. The dark, cold days of winter.
Things got crazy. Holidays, work, trips...it felt like a lot. For a while I did well, because I knew that getting through the challenges would teach me something...because I knew I had an 85 pound loss behind me.
But then...then things changed. I let myself have a bite of this and a bite of that...and I remembered what I had been missing. And I took time off when my hip went out...and being lazy felt so good too. I remembered what it was like to have time to just decompress and not think. I remembered what it was like to crumble onto the couch and not move.
So, yes...by remembering, it's been much more difficult to forget again and move back into what I was doing, into what was successful. Plus, I'm still getting compliments, even though I'm not doing anything. I can ride that out for a few more weeks without anyone really realizing I've stopped being a goody-two-shoes.
Can I ask you a question?
Sure! Fire away. *confident*
Do you remember anything else? I mean, have you been remembering anything else?
....I don't know what you're talking about...
Are you sure? Anything that wasn't such a wonderful memory.
No. *looks away*
I don't believe you.
*stares, patiently waiting*
*frustrated* FINE! It's been a little harder to breathe lately...but that could just be the weather change...
Sure. Of course. Anything else?
*crosses arms* Stamina.
My stamina. It feels like it's gone. I don't even know if I could walk a 5k anymore. And my strength is gone too. I'm weak. And tired. And sick all the time.
Are you sure?
Sure about what? Look, I confessed, alright! I said it. I'm a sad, pathetic, weak, fat person again. Do you have to rub my nose in it?
I think you're mistaken.
About what? What the hell are you talking about. I told you what you wanted. I told you that I'm back to being flabby and fat and disgusting and lazy again. I told you everything and now you keep pestering me about something or other and I don't understand. Do you want me to tell you I also feel completely unattractive again? Or how about that I feel like the fattest person in the gym again...and a fraud. Yep, that too. I feel like a fraud, a phony, a fake. And I feel unloved...like nobody here or anywhere cares what I do anymore and they're all just waiting for me to fail. It's been too long. I've had too much success. It was a good run, and I wish I could've gone further, but I can't run anymore - pun intended. *forces a laugh* Can you just go away now? *pouts*
All of it. Listen. Listen carefully.
You think you've failed the past two months. You've seen no progress since November, you think. You think you've lost all of your strength and stamina in those 2 months and now it will take you another 6 months to get back tower you are. I can hear that fear in your voice, and the belief that you don't have enough strength left for that.
First of all, you do. You have enough strength for an entire lifetime. Giving up is not an option because every day spent not living is a day spent dying.
Second of all, you're lying to yourself. In November you had great successes. If I remember correctly, it was the first time you were able to zip up those 24s, no matter how uncomfortable they were. You've been to the gym countless time in those two months. You rocked challenges and saw yourself shrinking...and everyone around you noticed.
The last time you were at the gym? Tuesday. That was 2 days ago. And the week before that you spent in Vegas walking mile after mile. Oh, and about that 5k you don't think you can walk anymore? I have to tell you -- you just did. Remember the 3.8 miles at the Grand Canyon? That was more than a 5k. And YOU did that. Even when it was hard because of ice and snow on the path. Even when Andrea was bugging you. Even when you couldn't breathe because of the change in elevation and the crisp winter air...you did that. You found your footing and you completed that walk and you didn't really feel all that sore after stretching when you came back. And you followed it with more days of walking all day and night! You didn't even take a rest day.
Well, I guess you're right about that...used to be that rest days were necessary after a 5k. But...I rested a lot when I came back.
You sure did. 4 days of blissful nothing that you completely earned with a week of walking, a 5k, jet lag, a sinus and ear infection that have yet to surrender completely. Your body made you sleep because it needed to repair. And, in all honesty, I don't think it's anywhere near 100% again...not yet.
But what if it never gets there? And....well, what if I never get to run again?
If it does turn out that you cannot run for fear of serious injury, you will deal with that. Just as persons who have lost mobility from a freak car accident learn to cope, you will cope with whatever medical issues you have. BUT there's no saying that you can't run again...you just need to train again. And you know that for you that looks different than it does for most people starting out.
Yeah...I hate that.
Hate what? Being different?
Okay, that's too silly for me to even address considering we are ALL different. ...moving on... Your training regimen includes at least 1-2 full weeks of strength training in your hip. You thought when you started running that the running would do the job to get your hip into shape, but you were wrong. There's nothing wrong with being wrong. We learned a valuable lesson. You need strength training in order to run.
*growls* I HATE that I have to do more work to achieve the same goal!! It's not fair!!
Get over it. Those people with mobility issues from a freak accident? They've had the option of even training in ANY way stolen from them. You get over it right now and count your blessings.
*crosses arm* Fine. ...you're right.
So, getting back to it...you train. You train hard. You work that hip in any strength training moves you can find for those hip muscles. And in a week or two, you take a tiny jog to test the hip. If it feels good, you start back slowly...once a week. When that feels alright, you can go back to 2-3 times a week. And after that you can chose to either go back to C25k or find/create a different program that works for you. Strength training, though, must stay in place the ENTIRE time you're working on your running. We know that now. Hopefully that will keep the knee strong and you won't run into the same problem -- pun intended. *chuckles* So, what do you think?
I don't even know where we were going with this conversation...
Going? Why do we have to always be going somewhere? This conversation was a chance for you to sit within yourself and figuring out what the demons are that you've been fighting. It's a chance to confront your fears head on and a chance to realize that you aren't as bad off as you've been telling yourself you are. It's also a chance for you to understand -- if you continue to ignore the problem, it doesn't go away...it gets worse. You will gain weight eventually with that kind of eating and "i just don't care" attitude. And eventually you will lose your strength and stamina and all the ability you've gained.
These conversation with yourself are important because - who else can tell when you're lying better than you can? Who else is better at remembering than you than....you!
But...what do I do with all this information?
*sighs* *smiles* Isn't it obvious?
*shrugs* *looks around* *shrugs again*
Get back on the horse. Stop lying to yourself and get your head back in the game. All is not lost. You need a heavy dose of great, healthy food - a splash of gym-time and exercise - a nice, big helping of strength training - a 'try-it-again' serving of the run - and a good quantity of sleep and rest in between.
Sounds good, actually. But I'm not sure I'm ready for all of it yet.
That's fine. Start with one thing. Or wait and start when you're ready. But know that the longer you wait, the harder it is to come back. Make it easier on yourself by trying just 1 of those things tonight...even if it is extra sleep.
I think I can do that. I'll try.
Just so you know...even trying burns calories....but doing burns more.
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Monday - Mid-Strip Walking Tour and Rio/Palms
Beetles Revolution at the Mirage. We just took funny pictures. :)
See! I told you I was on the ball in Vegas...I just didn't say what ball.
Some random guy walked by and handed me this stick of incense. "Here," he said. "This is for you." Uhm...okay. Maybe he thought I smelled. *shrug* (See pic of shrug)
Andrea and I at the VooDoo Lounge - a GREAT view of the strip!
The Rio buffet dessert choices. I had a tiny bite of each thing, but only ate the cannoli and the gelato. If it wasn't worth eating, I wasn't eating it.
Astroturf across the street from The Palms. The only grass we saw in Vegas. ;)
Tuesday - Grand Canyon Trip
Vegas sunrise outside the hotel.
FAAAAREEEZING at the Hoover Dam.
That white line marks where the water level of the Colorado River SHOULD be. Can you say drought?
So, I'm going to tell you a secret....it's REALLY difficult to get a picture of yourself at the Grand Canyon without it looking fake. Serious. I promise I was there! PROMISE!
LOOONG way down!
Ooh, this one's better because you can see crazy naked guy on the outlook behind me! *lol*
At the turnaround at mile 1.9 on the South Rim after a potty break. Had to put down my hair to protect my ear. It was COOOLD!
Hellooooo out there?!?!
Wednesday - South Side tour and the Nightlife
Lions at MGM (there were 3). For some reason, the trainers seemed totally bored being in a glass enclosure with three lions... I mean, I know they do it every day, but come on! It's not like paper pushing! You're PLAYING with LIONS!
Lunch at House of Blues...and my face looks BLOATED! UGH! That long bus ride the day before did a number on me!
Bar 1 - Rockhouse (about 9:30pm, still not hopping)
All dressed up with places to go...
THE reason we started here -- girls on tire swings!! WOOT!
Bar 2 - Carnavale outside Harrah's. With "show" bartenders of sorts and a DJ instead of a band or singer. Pretty fun, I danced a good bit...but we had to go in to pee and that's where we found...
Bar 3 - Dueling Pianos inside Harrah's Casino. FUN! It's where we spent the majority of our time and ended up leaving when the piano players were done for the night.
And, that, my dears, is me inside Bar 4 - a tiny little side bar inside Paris Casino. There were like 3 people there other than us. It's where we met up with Frankie and his creepy older brother who tried to pimp out his brother (even though he KNEW I was married and kept saying NO!). Frankie wasn't as persistent and was actually alright, but his brother would just NOT STOP! UGH!
Thursday - Third and Fifth Wheel Day at Aria and Mandalay
Don't think for a second that dieting in Vegas is going to be easy. Not only does the chocolate fountain place in the Bellagio display beautiful cakes, and then the cupcake shop in Monte Carlo, but even Aria has a bakery with tons of delicious goodies. Other than the cupcakes, tho, and the dessert at the buffet, we were GOOD girls!
You should go see the fountain and the HUGE waterwall outside Aria, though. It's beautiful!
Friday - I'm Comin' HOME!
Leaving Las Vegas
And, for the record, the seat belts in a Boeing 757 DO fit me, and I have to tighten the strap. It's those tiny turboprops with their tiny belts that I need to lose a few more inches for. :P
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
The whirlwind that has been the past few months is now settling down (I hope).
Christmas turned into a crazy affair.
NYE found me with both a sinus and an ear infection.
I've been sleeping a lot due to illness and wear-and-tear.
I was saving every penny for Vegas and spent likely every dime.
And Vegas. Drama. Excitement. Confusion. Frustration. It was a whirlwind of emotion.
So I spent the past four days sleeping and/or half-asleep! So what?!
Oh, yeah. There's that little issue of wanting to lose some more weight this year and losing something like none so far in the month of January.
There's that whole issue of wanting to run, but doing a little of nothing in the way of ST so far to prepare my body for it.
There's also the whole issue of missing my boys like crazy and wanting to spend every waking (and sleeping) moment with them, no matter how boring it might be.
So, I woke up late this morning. 7:38am. I need to be at work at 8:30am and I live almost an hour away. I also needed to have the boys on their bus by 7:25am. CRAP! I rush out of bed, only to find that both of my sons have gotten up on their own and, I assume, got dressed, ready and out the door without a peep from their dear mother, asleep in her bed after hitting what she THOUGHT was the snooze button at 6am on the new alarm. (I guess it wasn't the snooze button....)
I had taken my shower the night before, due to the constant nagging of my Hubs as he had hoped to work on the bathtub drain while I slept and, hopefully, get it unclogged so we don't have to deal with standing water that has to be flushed down the toilet to be removed. I never take showers at night. I'm glad I did. I was out the door in 10 minutes and was only about 3 minutes late for work.
But on my mind all day has been my sincere lack of focus for the past 2 months. I have flashes of brilliance now and again and plan up a storm, but I have little to no follow-through right now. It's frustrating. I feel myself slipping. And while I continue to receive compliments about weight loss I'm not exactly having right now, I'm not loving this new body quite so much anymore. I want to see what it will look like when it's smaller. Namely, when the belly flap is gone. (I have discovered that it's come up at least an inch since November, so YAY me!)
I have a plan. I do.
I also have little hopes of following through with it.
But I also have no expectations for this week other than "TRY!"
Yep, I said it. My only expectation is to try.
I MUST go to the gym tonight because I have a meeting with the PT. And while I'm there, I might as well work out, even if I don't want to. 30 minutes Cardio (elliptical), 30 minutes ST is my minimum requirement for myself, because I was doing that at 390 pounds, so there's no single reason why I can't do it at 330. Excuses are for losers.
Still, my head is a mess. Things are in chaos inside me.
So until I figure out what it all means, I'm going through the motions.
I'm showing up and doing the bare minimum, because that's more than the nothing I've been doing.
I feel like Vegas was a loss, but I know it wasn't.
Why do I feel that way?
Why do I feel like a failure for not frequenting the gym every day, when I know that nearly every day I wanted to strangle the life out of my friend, who insisted we keep moving and never needed a break as we walked through hotel after hotel after casino? The same friend that told me that she easily walks 8-10 miles a day at work, and I wanted to gag with an onion because I know I walk like .001 miles to my car from the office every morning and evening? I actually had the thought in my head on no less than 3 times on 3 different days, "OMG! I just want to DIE! I'm SOOO tired of walking!" and then I kept going without saying a word. I just kept going. And I have no clue how far I walked, but I know I'm not in horrible shape, so it had to be more than a mile a day to have me so exhausted...right?
But in my head that sounds like a cop-out.
I didn't lose any pounds.
But everyone has said I lost more weight in that week and returned skinnier than when I left.
And my clothes don't quite fit anymore.
And even the shirt I bought there on Saturday fits me better today then it did when I bought it.
I have to say, that where I be is in a land of confusion and uncertainty.
So instead of planning and figuring out what I can accomplish, I'm going to skate through however long it takes to figure it out by doing the minimum Spark requirement.
I may not lose that much weight.
I may not gain that much strength.
Or I might surprise myself.
But at least I'll be building a solid base to get myself back in the game.
Oh, and I know I still owe you pictures. I was so tired last night I nearly crashed twice on the way home...so I skipped the gym and went home, where I let Shane drive to the Mexican restaurant and finished off all my food and went home and watched two movies before taking that shower and passing out in bed and sleeping in.
I've been tired a LOT lately.
And I've been eating a LOT...constantly hungry. UGH!
But I told myself last night that it's time to remind myself what hunger really feels like. No more feeding the monster inside. Time to feed me - body and soul - exactly what I need.
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
...ends up in this blog! *lol* Or, at least, most of it.
Friday, January 7th
(Chocolate fountain at the Bellagio)
My first flight was delayed due to a maintenance issue. Once solved, however, everything ran pretty smoothly. I must say that 5 hours on a plane is not the most exciting thing I've ever done. It made me thankful that I specifically requested NOT traveling on my birthday!
I was greeted at the airport by slot machines, which made me giggle. But, after that, it was a hurry up and wait type situation. (I'm not sure how well you all know me, but I'm not the most patient person...I hate waiting for something to happen!) Our hotel was JUST off the strip, but off enough to SEE the strip and not figure out how to get to it. Besides that, my friend forgot to put me down as her guest, so they didn't let me check in right away. (After about a half hour or so of waiting, it finally dawned on me to try to call her husband and see if he could make the call to let me in.)
Once my friend arrived, we caught the shuttle and headed to the strip. Monte Carlo to the Bellagio to the new Cosmopolitan. After a while I realized I either needed sleep or food, so we tried to find a bite to eat. Not wanting to blow 60 bucks on dinner right out the gate, we finally settled at the upstairs bar at P.F. Chang's. (Laugh all you want, but I have *never* been to a P.F. Chang's and hear so much about it all the time - so I broke my "don't do anything on vacation you can do at home" rule for that reason...and because everywhere was PACKED!).
(At Bellagio gardens decorated with an Asian theme.)
By the end of the night I was in tears from the exhaustion that had set in after missing our shuttle back to the hotel and having to wait an hour for the next one. Since Thursday I had had about 5 hours total of sleep, broken up over 4 attempts. That's not the way to start any vacation.
Saturday, January 8th
My birthday! I woke up and completely forgot I was 30. Andrea kept mentioning it to people in a shameless ploy to get free things (didn't happen), and that was about all that reminded me. I did have one moment where I looked out the bus window and said to myself, "Wow. I'm 30." And that was that. Still, I got to pick whatever we did that day without any questions, other than dinner, which was pre-planned by my friend.
First we caught the shuttle to the Strip, and caught the bus to the Outlet mall. Yep, I was in Vegas for my 30th birthday and all I really wanted to do was shop! *lol* It's quite fun shopping when you aren't sure what will fit and might get a very pleasant surprise (I did, as most of the XXL and XL shirts from Gap and Banana Republic were free game for my shopping delight!). I ended up with an XL shirt from Banana Republic and a XXL shirt from the Gap - both stores I have always wanted to be able to shop in and have never had the opportunity because of my size. I even turned one thing down at BR, not because it didn't fit, but because I didn't like how it was made! I wish I could express the joy and freedom I felt in that moment! (I also got my ring finger resized. On the day I was married in 2002 it was a size 10, now it's a size 8 1/2...the smallest I can ever remember it being since before I was about 14!)
After shopping, we headed back to the hotel to change. We got all fancy, as I was told the restaurant had a dress code (nobody told the dude in the elevator with a pair of jeans and a black button-up *sigh*). Andrea took me to the restaurant in the Eiffel Tower at Paris. A perfect setting, and proof that my friend does know me quite well.
We had the most amazing meal, an authentic French waiter named Pierre, a marvelous view of the Bellagio fountains, and Pierre even sang Happy Birthday to me! It was wonderful!
I have no clue how many calories I consumed that night, but I do know that I savored every bite of my chocolate souffle (shared with Andrea) and lobster quiche appetizer (shared) and my shot of chocolate mousse. The only thing I didn't really share was my veal with vegetables. The BEST veal I've ever tasted, with vegetables much like *I* make at home! *lol*
After dinner, we walked around the Paris casino a bit, and then ended up down on Freemont Street, where a very creepy Elvis didn't know it was his birthday, and then proceeded to grope me while he was singing Happy Birthday. I'm sure he was way more drunk than I was! We ended the evening pretty late...most of Freemont Street was closed down by the time we walked out and caught the bus again! *lol* We headed back to the hotel and I collapsed in bed.
Sunday, January 9th
The day before we had begun to make more solid plans for the week. We decided that Sunday would be the day we'd go to a show...my pick, and I picked Jabbawockeez. We started out the day grabbing our discount tickets and then headed off to explore the strip a tiny bit before returning to the hotel.
A dressy change later and we headed out to the Monte Carlo for the show. ---IT WAS AMAZING!---- Again, if you knew me well, you'd know that I adore dancing. I have shamelessly watched every version of Step Up and Center Stage and Fame and whatever else I can get my hands on. I used to watch SYTYCD religiously. (But, no, I'm not watching DWTS because it's stupid...I want to see people who at least SORTA know what they're doing.) Jabbawockeez have appeared both on America's Next Top Model (another guilty pleasure of mine) and America's Best Dance Crew on MTV. I was always amazed at their ability to convey so much emotion without the use of facial expressions (they wear white masks). They made me laugh and cry in their Mus.I.C. show! Much love to these amazing dancers!
Don't remember if we did much of anything else that night, except I ate part of my Kir Royal Cupcake that night. (Notice I said part...) Oh, we did have sushi at Dragon Noodle Company. It was pretty darn good after they took away the wasabi tainted sushi! *shudders*
(Post-Sephoria going into the Venetian with our sexy gloss! *lol*)
(Beetles Revolution letters have seats in them with red lighting = Cool pics!)
Monday, January 10th
We toured the middle of the strip and walked more than I would have thought on what looks like the tiniest strip of road. Started at Harrah's, did Caesar's, the Venetian, Treasure Island, then headed to get some cheap dinner buffet tickets. (It's Vegas...buffets are a part of the deal, right?! RIGHT?! No, Andrea said the place was awesome, so I took her word for it.)
Buffet dinner at Rio's. About the worst thing I ate was a piece of friend fish and a few small onion rings. I ate too much, yes, but certainly not as much as Andrea who was complaining even the next day about how much she ate. *shrug* I didn't make it all the way through the buffet and stopped when I felt a little past full. I took bites to try and didn't finish anything that didn't taste REALLY good to me. And when I was done, I was done. No regrets. No "you have to roll me out of here" feeling. I didn't beat myself up once about it, especially considering the rest of our meals were reasonable and we'd walked a million miles!
We checked out the (COLD!! and WINDY!!) view at the VooDoo Lounge at Rio before walking to the Palms, where I won 45 bucks on a Wheel of Fortune machine, which felt great since I only put in 20. *big grin* (I win, Vegas! HAHA!) Ended the night with an invite to meat 2 guys for drinks the next night. (*lol* That's Vegas for ya!)
Tuesday, January 11th
We had to get up early in order to catch our LOOOOONG bus ride to the Grand Canyon (with a stop at Hoover Dam along the way). It was surprisingly cold, but Andrea and I complained our way through a somewhat icy 3.8 mile hike around the South Rim of the Canyon. I did learn that I get frustrated at people when they underestimate my fitness abilities, and that anger (a call from Hubs about my PT who is annoying me) drives me to walk in hyper-drive speed! *lol* When we got back to the gift shop to catch our bus, I bought myself an XL green T-Shirt that says "Go Hike a Canyon" on the back. I'll admit it, I have dreams of taking the 4-day hiking trip INTO the Canyon someday. Hike in on day 1, spend 2 days at the bottom, and then hike up the 4th day. Sounds like HEAVEN! They said the hike takes about 6 hours or so on day one and closer to 8-10 on day 4 (it's more difficult coming back up, obviously). Am I crazy to think this sounds like the best way to spend a day EVER?! It's going on my bucket list for SURE! (As for my friend Andrea, she said hiking isn't her thing, and she'd rather take a week-long rafting trip down the Colorado River inside the Canyon. Maybe we'll coordinate and meet at the bottom somewhere! *lol*)
By the time we got back, we were too tired to do much of anything and pretty much crashed after a fight with the Hubs over the guys we met the night before inviting us to dinner the next night. Long story short, Hubs and I resolved our issues (and his jealousy) and I canceled our meeting with them out of respect for his feelings and a feeling of being a little uncomfortable about the whole situation.
Wednesday, January 12th
We FINALLY got adjusted to Vegas time and slept in until like 11am or something! It was AWESOME! *lol* We started the day at Television Studio in MGM where we watched a pilot episode of a new Criminal Minds they're hoping to launch. It was okay, but needs a LOT of development (this coming from a girl that LOVES Criminal Minds!). We got invited to join in a focus group later in the day where they would pay us 50 bucks to give our thoughts on the show. (We missed the check-in time and had to forfeit our spots... *sigh*)
We ate lunch at House of Blues at Mandalay Bay after walking through New York New York, Excalibur, and Luxor, and I enjoyed every last bite of my cheeseburger and fries, yes I did! *lol* We ended up going back to the hotel to change in order to finally take in some Vegas nightlife. (We figured since we slept in that day, it was the perfect time to stay up a little late!) We bar hopped from the Rockhouse club (with girls on tire swings!) at Imperial Palace to the Carnavale Bar outside Harrah's (where I danced and Zumbaed a little! *lol*) and then finally ended up closing the Dueling Pianos bar inside Harrah's. It was great. I drank WAY too much, and had a wonderful night! We ended the night at Paris in order to catch a cab back to the hotel.
Thursday, January 13th
I spent the day attempting to flush Vegas out of my system and pretty ready to go home. Andrea's husband and 2 friends came in this day, so I spent much of the evening feeling like a 5th wheel (not their fault at all). I didn't want to drink after the night before, so that meant sitting in The Pub at the Monte Carlo for a couple hours downing glass after glass of water. Later we searched high and low for a place to eat with a wait time of under an hour before getting immediate seating at the Border Grill in Mandalay Bay. They had some pretty good food, but I must admit, I was so ready to come home!! I missed my boys and I knew they had missed me too.
Ethan's Quote from Wednesday: "Tomorrow will be a good day."
Shane: "Why's that?"
Ethan: "Because then I can say, 'Mom comes home tomorrow!'"
We did end the night at the Mandalay Bay casino where I got another progressive jackpot (2 actually) on a Wheel of Fortune game. (Man, those things love me!) I put in 20 bucks and got 145 back! (Then tried to win again with the same 20 bucks and lost it! *lol*) It was nice to come out ahead on my last night though, and my jaw actually dropped when it said I won 110 when the two progressive jackpots were combined! I had to call Hubs immediately and tell him what happened...and he immediately told me to put that money away and not touch the machines again! *lol* (I didn't. Instead I talked to a guy at the craps table who spent the better part of an hour teaching me how to play the game. Confusing, but the best odds in Vegas, so I hear! Must learn for the return trip!)
Friday, January 14th
Believe it or not, my flights went smoothly all the way home. I actually got in 10 minutes or so early! My boys picked me up and we went to IHop for dinner before I headed home, had some special time with Hubs and then crashed in my warm bed.
Saturday, January 15th
I planned an evening with friends. I was hoping for about 12 - I got 4. But they were the best 4 to have, plus Hubs and me, and we really enjoyed our meal at the Hibachi's Japanese Steakhouse. We tried to hit a bar after that, but the waiter refused to wait on us, so we bounced and I took the 1 remaining friend to "Mini-Vegas"....in other words, to the Resort and Casino that's just outside of Charleston, but none of us had ever been to! *lol* I lost another 20 bucks, and my friend won 2. *lol* All in all, a good birthday celebration. Followed that at home with a beer and a half (and then 2 cups of coffee) with the Hubs while playing Guitar Hero and enjoying some alone time before the boys came home the next day.
So, there it is...my Vegas recap.
I walked A LOT!
I walked more than a 5k at the Grand Canyon (in icy conditions!).
I drank a little too much, but not every day.
I ate reasonably most of the time, but indulged other times.
When I did indulge, I ate a part of things. I had 2 cupcakes...but it took me 4 days to eat them.
And when I got back, the bloat caused a 4 pound gain, which, by Monday, was gone and I was back to about where I was before I left.
That being said, even while I didn't lose any weight, per se, while I was gone...I've been told by no less than 4 people in the past few days that I lost weight on this trip. My clothes fit better than they did before I left, so I believe them. (I've got some clothes that need to be given away now...there's no way I can keep flashing people like this! *lol*)
So, of my Vegas vacation -- I'm not ashamed of a single thing.
** I uploaded pics from the first part of the week, but just realized my computer didn't download over 530 pics from the trip. I'll post another blog with pics of the rest of the trip, so as to not overload you. Plus, I'm trying to upload mostly pics that I'm in so it means a little more than just "here's a pic of the strip" that you can get via Google.
Thursday, January 06, 2011
"An apple a day keeps the doctor away."
Let me ask you a simple question. The food you ate today and the quantity you ate, the amount you exercised as well - can you see yourself doing that for the next five years?
One thing I spoke to my behaviorist about this past month was "Sustainability." I explained to her that sustainability was the one and only reason THIS TIME was different from every other time I've tried to diet.
If you look at Wikipedia, the definition of "sustainability" is simply "the capacity to endure."
Sounds simple enough, right? More and more this word has been used in terms of "going green" and creating a sustainable earth. Which, by the way, beyond all the nonsense means "how can we live so that the world sustains the same state (or better) that it is in now? What can we do to continue to make sure the earth reamains a productive environment and an atmosphere in which we can sustain life?"
But if you think of sustainability in terms of weight loss, the idea is not that far off.
What can I do today to ensure that my healthy habits are sustained and that my body and my healthy lifestyle continue to be productive and support the life I have come accustomed to living?
Okay, so quick "desert island" question. If you had one food you could eat for the rest of your life. Any food on the planet, a recipe or a food from a restaurant or something grown in the earth, what would it be?
If you're thinking with your stomach and taste buds you might say something like "chocolate cake!" Why? Well, duh! Because it tastes good! But after that momentary lapse of judgment passes, you realize what you really need is a diverse recipe of fresh ingredients, full of flavor, able to be adjusted daily in order to suit the needs of that day, with every major nutrient included in order to sustain your life. (What's the good of a island if you die a week into the enjoying of it?)
I told my behaviorist simply, "I think to myself when I eat any food, before I start any exercise regimen or build any healthy habit -- can I see myself doing this for the next five years? Five years from now, could I wake up in the morning and still be fine with something like a 1/2 a wheat bagel with whipped cream cheese and a coffee? Will I still be okay walking 7 miles a week or exercising 3-7 times a week?" If the answer is no, then I know I'm not building a healthy lifestyle.
For some people, cutting out carbs is the way to go. But I have to tell you, it didn't pass my sustainability test. I can not imagine not having a single carb in the next five years.
For some people, cutting out coffee is just fine. But that didn't pass my sustainability test either. Mornings and java just seem to click in my head and I just know I would miss it and eventually break.
Now there are things like chocolate cake (I know I use this all the time...can you tell how big a fan I am of chocolate cake?), McDonald's french fries, milkshakes, ice cream, and other such "bad" foods. When I asked myself, "What can I sustain?" the answer was simple. I cannot tell myself I will never eat another McDonald's french fry. I will. I have. What I can say is that I won't eat them every day, or even once a week - heck, not even once a month! Every few months, I might eat a small, medium, or even LARGE McDonald's french fry. And then I'm done. And I'll last another few months. For me, the trick is fitting these treats into my daily calorie goals and not even missing a beat as far as my calorie bank goes. For me...THAT is sustainable.
Sustainability is so important to me because, let's be 100% honest, I will NEVER be able to go back to eating whatever I want. Some people were made with the ability to do that. I was not. My body requires structure and limitations, just as most children do. Whatever I do today, whatever life I build right now, is going to define the majority of what my life will need to look like 5, 10, or even 20 years from now.
If I want to sustain my healthy body, I will need to sustain my healthy lifestyle.
THAT is why diets don't work. Because there's always an end date. A goal weight. And people think to themselves, however secretly, "If I can just get to that weight, then I won't have to try so hard and I can go back to doing whatever I want." From one yo-yo dieter to another, that doesn't work, Missy or Mister. Once you go back, so does the weight.
And what sustainability does, is helps you build a life of consistency. It doesn't require an effort of 150% now for 50% effort later. It requires you to stay at about 80%, pushing now and again, failing now and again, but nearly at that 80% most of the time. This ensures that you don't burn out on what you're doing. It ensures that when the bad times come, those stressful moments, you'll know how to walk out of them practically unscathed. You'll learn along the way how to deal with disappointment and come back from it and back to yourself and your way of life again. It's not 100% 100% of the time. It's 80%. It's manageable. It's sustainable.
So, let me ask you again. Whatever you did today, can you sustain that life for the next five years? If it helps, think in terms of weeks instead of days. Can you sustain this week for the next 5 years? Can you even yourself out to that 80% at the level you're playing at now?
Can you drink diet shakes for the next 5 years? If not, do you have a plan to susbstitute the same calorie base and maintain that?
Can you continue to avoid carbs for the next 5 years? Are you in danger of reaching a breaking point and going back to where you were?
Can you work out at that level and intensity of exercise or more for the next five years? Can you get to the gym 3-7 times for the next five years? (Come on, 3 days is NOT that big of a deal...and remember, 80%. So go 6 days one week and 2 the next and it will all even out in the end.)
Sustainability. Not perfection. Not a diet. A sustainable lifestyle. To help keep you productive.
*photo source: Wikimedia Commons, USDA, Scott Bauer
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