Tuesday, July 20, 2010
There is no easy progress here. I've vacillated so much on the way from 219 to 207 that I'm reminded of one of those 'Family Circus' cartoons where Billy's path from place to place is charted as a zigzagging circuit of the entire house - several times. Another image that comes to mind is Lady MacBeth's damned spot - out, out! - and the spot refuses, it dawdles, whines, drags its feet (marking up the floor, naturally) and returns, it fades at one edge only to darken at another. Grimly, some days, I scrub away: tracking, sweating, measuring.
But there IS progress! My wedding ring, which I'd had to have enlarged before, is loose. I have felt subtle changes in my legs, which are behaving themselves amazingly well these days, powering me through the burn of 1000 calories + per day. I try looking away, based on the watched-pot theory, and I try close scrutiny: is that 2/10 of a pound?!
Through it all, I track foods, sweat, measure. Every step, I learn my body better, know more about nutrition and my own particular energy needs (eat before working out, watch those beans). And it's working. Not as well as when I was younger, when a skipped dessert meant a 5-lb loss, but it is working.
One truly positive difference is the level of understanding and motivation I'm achieving in this slower process. Weight loss is not a mysterious bat's eye, tail of newt, twirl three times and spit sort of spell that happens to me - it is a thoroughly understandable process in which I have full ownership. Everything teaches, from others' despairing reports of binges and stress-induced eating, to my monitored sodium intake.
I guess grounding the inner kid does have a positive effect, after all (most days)
Friday, July 16, 2010
I keep feeling like I've reached my limits on the elliptical - and then I find that I have not yet done so! It's been so interesting listening to my body as it adjusts and reacts to being used in ways it's not been used for years - decades, really. I have been working out on the elliptical since June 1 - and in that time I have gone from 1/2 a mile, and 120 calories burned - to 5.26 miles and 1,000 calories burned (omg! - me? - yep, me). Mike keeps having to oil and adjust the gears on the thing because believe me, between us we are giving this (used) piece of equipment hell. If it had a mind, I'll bet it was thinking it would continue its (no doubt) former role of clothes hanger. But no! It hadda come here, where it's being treated like Mickey Mouse in Fantasia - made to scrub floors and haul buckets, worked hard and hung to dry, a relic of its nearly pristine self.
I say TOUGH (power salute)
I say GET USED TO IT!
Thursday, July 15, 2010
I read lots of blogs so see a continued focus on quick cures for obesity. looking at the words I have such mixed feelings. first, - I am reminded of the desperation of my mother and sisters, who between them have been addicted to speed (my mom, back when it was prescribed for weight loss), have had bariatric surgery (one sister, who now can never eat normally again), and sustained heart damage (other sister, due to phen-fen). and there's more: diabetes, sleep apnea, eating disorders. all due to desperation-linked depression brought about by being overweight. they are the reason (or part of it - I can't point at others in finding cause for my own issues) I have put off dealing with being overweight.
I couldn't stand the thought of yoyo dieting and the damage it appears to cause to both body and mind, couldn't identify so much with the self-hatred that caused them and others to take desperate measures. my sister once said (when I warned her about phen-fen causing heart disease in women, frequently undetected until too late) 'you don't understand. I would do anything.'
my god, don't we do enough, endure enough, without self-induced harms like this? and didn't I, in failing to control portion size, in ignoring my increasingly sedentary lifestyle, provide fertile ground for diabetes, as well? yes. I understand that self-denial and negativity, and how fat serves as a shield. yes. but how much of my personhood is tied up in creating and maintaining an unhealthy weight? - and doesn't the answer to that need to be sought, in changing?
public health, I know, has frequently engaged in victim-blaming rather than seeking to remedy larger cultural problems, and with obesity it is no different. lay on stigma, provide justification for biases that already exist! surely such pressures will only increase the problem of self-hatred, boost the incidence of eating disorders. weight loss surgery has its place, but how many people end up like my sister, who can only eat a little - and who chooses empty calories, guaranteeing further health problems? I would say I don't understand -
- but I think I do. from my mother and my sisters, from deep inside myself; from conflicting cultural messages; particularly, those which wound us (fat is ugly, unworthy, embarassing) and those that promise healing (here, chocolate! pills, surgery, and big macs). this is our heritage, too, and we growing numbers of obese people are only following through on what we've learned too well.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
- or at least it appears to have helped me through dual sessions in which I exceeded yesterday's triple sessions (in which I was totally dragging). Too many variables to be certain of the direct effects of my crockpot breakfast, a melange of quinoa, barley, amaranth, and oats, but I did notice that about 2/3 of the way through session 2, I began to feel tired. Yesterday I was tired from the start.
I don't know if it's the 'right' way to do this but I've really come to appreciate the idea of doing several sessions interrupted by 15-20 minutes of cool-down time. I don't feel, as I do with a single session, that I need to hurry up to equal the calories burned in prior sessions, or the distance. Instead, I let my body tell me what it's ready to do, and I follow that. Today's workout burned 859 calories, and I 'ellipticaled' for the equivalent, more or less, or 4.49 miles - more, longer - and it feels really good.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
When I began to work out on the elliptical, I'd have a banana before I got going to sustain me, but over time, I found this wasn't really enough. Then I began to have smoothies and the occasional bowl of oatmeal, which worked for a while. But I'm still finding that my energy level is low - yesterday I had to split my workout into three sessions. Though the end result was that I burned more calories and worked out longer (which is just great with me!) I never did get that adrenaline going, and when I got done I just felt exhausted, depleted.
After doing a little reading, it seems that a carb-heavy breakfast may help, so I put together a number of whole grains in my crockpot overnight, with cinnamon and pumpkin pie spices. It was great to wake up to a warm breakfast all ready for me! That sure was filling but I'm still not awake... I think this fatigue is as much emotional as it is physical, since I am beyond exhausted with the dissertation stress. This is my 7th year, and I have one more year to go - argh! enough! I know, this too shall pass... but slowly, slowly.
Meanwhile, SP is supporting some goals and lifestyle changes that offer shorter term benefits, without a doubt. Even a month ago I would not have believe that I'd be working out 1 1/2 hours a day! It's also pleasurable and very rewarding to rework recipes to be healthier - it feels like a natural progression from omni to vegan to conscious, healthy eating, and it's not at all just about calories. A good and worthwhile journey!
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