Thursday, October 10, 2013
I don't know really what my good weight is. I was a fat baby from a family of fat people.
Of course I outgrew that somewhat. But when I was around age five my mom secretly started watching what I ate. She didn't tell me because she didn't want me to develop a complex. Even though we didn't know much about eating disorders back in those days, she was smart to think of this. Probably her awareness and a growth spurt helped me grow out of that childhood pudginess.
So I stayed at a pretty reasonable weight until I got to my early teenage years. Then I quit growing taller and started growing wider! I think that by the time I graduated from high school I was probably around 170 pounds, and I was only 5'5 with a smallish frame, so that was too much for me.
I lost two close friends the summer before college and I had a hard time with that. I think that the stress of that and the yucky food at college were ultimately the reason that I lost weight. I got down to about 140 and stayed there for many years. But I was also not a healthy eater and lacked vitamins, so I was often sick. I had bronchitis, pneumonia and during that time my acid reflux really flared up. I married and kept the weight off for a few years. I was a voracious exerciser and eventually I incorporated healthier eating into my diet. I was pretty obsessive about what I put into my body! My body was firm and I was very fit. Then I went through a divorce, moved to a new town and found a new man. I was soooo very happy but I was also pushing myself too hard, not getting enough sleep, not exercising, and eating whatever. Over the years, the weight came back on. Eventually I was back up to the 170 - 180 mark.
I tried Weight Watchers and I lost the weight. I got to 140 pounds and was exercising a little, though not as much as I did back in the earlier years. But I felt good and am now a lifetime WW member.
I kept that weight off for while and once again I changed careers. I got a job where I liked what I did, but I didn't fit in with the company so well. I was working a lot and I guess I was pretty stressed and I ended up gaining a whole lot. I can blame a lot of things on that - the job, lots of venti lattes, many other things. I was going to YMCA most days and working out but I ended up putting on so much weight! I got up to about 220 pounds this time around. Yikes! I got a new job (with a company that I LOVE) and they had Weight Watchers at Work, so back I went to that. I got back down to 150 pounds. Yay! Still not back to 140, but I was feeling good! I wasn't exercising too much though.
Then we went through some hard times. My sister-in-law got really sick and in 2009 she passed away (only 34 years old). One of our beloved kitties got the same kind of cancer she had and he died too! We were devastated. We moved to a different community and the long commute took a very hard toll on me. That year I said I was going to enjoy Christmas food and not care about calories. I enjoyed it all right! The weight started to creep back on. Then I got a promotion and I was working long and hard hours. I gained and got back up to 220 pounds. Weight Watchers wasn't working for me anymore. I just couldn't bring myself to do it and when I did, it didn't seem to work very well (they had changed their program).
Finally at the end of 2012, I decided that enough was enough. I don't want to get older and not be able to get around and do the things that I love. So I set a goal of 145. That seemed good for my 5'5 frame and it seemed doable. I completely changed the way that I eat and I exercise six days a week now. I got to 145 in late August and I feel great! I do a variety of exercise and I am on a SP maintenance team that is very encouraging. The question is, should 145 be my final weight? I am actually down to 140 now and I am considering that since I have been at that weight and kept it off for most of my 20s and for part of my 30s and 40s, is that really my "happy" weight? I am trying to figure it out. Since during a lot of the time that I was eating so much I didn't exercise (and my second time of WW I didn't exercise) I am still very flabby and so I continue to work on strength training and exercise. If I lose the fat but build up the muscle, will I maintain the weight? It's so hard to know. We are all different and how are bodies will react to certain exercise and activities will not be the same for anyone. So today I changed my goal weight from 145 to 140. My plan is to continue to eat well and exercise regularly. If I do this, there is no doubt that I will maintain my weight.
Saturday, September 28, 2013
My closet is shameful. There are clothes in there from size 8 to 20. I even have clothing in Rubbermaid tubs. I am ashamed to think about how much I must have spent to acquire all of these things. I can't even find clothes to wear because it is such a disaster. So, lately I have been working on organizing it. I have a short attention span so I can only spend a little bit of time on it before I get bored and restless, but I am trying to commit to at least an hour each weekend, more if I can. I don't don't know why it is taking so long. I think it is partly because I just don't want to face it. Frankly, I would like to simplify my life and get rid of all of it and just have a few basics....not just in my closet, but in my whole house. The house looks clean and organized on the surface but apparently my husband and I have "Stuff-itis" and there is too much of it here. I wish that I could take about three weeks off work and get organized.
Saturday, September 21, 2013
I remember when I was a kid in school and we were supposed to run a mile in a certain amount of time in gym class. I could never do that. I would walk it every time and usually I would take the most amount of time out of the whole class because I was the slowest. But I love to walk and have always walked a lot. These days I walk several days each week. Sometimes it is just two miles, but some days it can be as many as six. I am getting pretty fast and I now find that I am not getting as much of a cardio benefit from it as I continue to get more fit. So the next logical step is running. Now I have a really bad knee because of an injury that I had over 34 years ago. So I am not completely sure about running. But I am not a fan of cycling and it seemed like I might enjoy running. A few people I know (in person and on SparkPeople) were talking about doing C25K programs. Walking a 5K....sure, any day. But running one? Meh.....but, I decided to do some research on it. I was pretty sure I wasn't ready for a 5K, so I found a good app to do one mile. I've been working on it now for about a month and a half I guess. It is a one month program and designed to have a person running a mile in ten minutes. I did get to the ten minute mark of running in about five weeks, but it wasn't a mile because I do not run that fast. A ten minute mile is about 6 mph and I am only up to about 5.0 to 5.3 mph. So, I need to keep working on this. But I think that ten minutes of running is soooooo hard! I mean seriously, I am sweating up a storm, I am huffing and puffing and completely breathless. The good thing is, my heart rate is now in the higher fitness range instead of just in the fat burning range. The bad thing is, I can't seem to push past this and go faster or feel like I am able to breath better.
The other day I read that it takes about six months to get used to this. It is not just my lungs that I need to build up. It is my muscles. So even though I have felt like giving up, I am not giving up yet. I still need to work on this for another 3.5 months at least. So I repeated the ten minute run for a couple of weeks. Later I will add speed, and once I get to 6 mph, I will add incline, because if I am going to do this outside, I am going to need to be able to run up the very hilly terrain around Nashville (right now I am using the treadmill).
Tonight I tried something different. I started a C25K program. It also entails running for ten minutes, but not ten minutes straight. It is a one minute run and a two minute walk, repeated ten times. I felt very comfortable doing that, though as it got toward the end, I was getting more breathless. It will gradually build up in intensity and is designed to last for eight weeks. However, I am prepared to take at least four months if I need to. My main goal is still to be able to run a mile in ten minutes.
Even though sometimes I dread the idea of getting on that treadmill....mostly I am really excited that I am able to do this. Six months ago there would have been no way this would have happened!
Sunday, September 01, 2013
I just don't get on SparkPeople as much as I used to.....I am just trying to find that elusive balance. Life is just go go go and I am always behind on my chores and tasks. Things keep getting more and more behind and that causes more and more stress. I am still tracking both calories and activity here every day and I do try to read some articles to keep myself motivated and educated. I try to keep up but it's just hard. I really need a month off work to catch up on things around here! But that isn't going to happen.
Anyway, I have been on vacation this past week. It was kind of a weird time to go on vacation as far as work goes because this past week was a really fun and exciting week at my office. There were a lot of fun activities planned, including a 5K for our employees. There was a picnic/barbecue on Friday and just a lot of things going on throughout the week. But I wanted to take this particular week off because it had a long weekend tacked on the end, so I missed the 5K and all of the other fun things.
Originally we had planned to go to the beach for this year's vacation, but in the end we decided to stay home. We had to get a new liner for our pool this year and it had to be custom made. As a result, the pool wasn't opened until late July and I just wanted to have some time to really enjoy it. We made some plans for this week besides the pool....we tried a couple of new restaurants, we ate at a couple of places where we normally wouldn't go, and we got in a lot of exercise.
One day we went to a greenway in Nashville and walked about six miles. Since we moved to the outskirts of Nashville, we don't get to the greenways as often as we used to. In fact, I can't remember when we last walked out there. Another day we went to a greenway that rents bikes for free and we rode about six miles. That was the first time I had been on a bike (besides my recumbent exercise bike) in probably 26 years. It was a single speed bike with foot brakes but the greenway in that area is pretty flat so we managed okay. I enjoyed it more than I thought I would and we saw a deer and a big snake (I like snakes). And I didn't crash into anything so I thought it was a success! Another day we went to a state park and hiked. I had actually planned for us to do three miles but we ended up doing six. That was because my husband lost his FitBit on the trail and we ended up going back all the way and looking for it. We did find it, thank goodness! We went to a different state park later in the week. That one is in Nashville and it is very popular. We used to go there pretty much all of the time when we lived there. This time we went on the "strenuous" trail. It was my third time on that trail and I remember that the first two times were so hard for me, but this time I thought I did okay. We visited REI to look at outdoor gear one day too, and we bought waist packs with water bottles because this week has been so hot and humid and miserable that we thought that it was better to look dorky but be hyrdratd! LOL!
I didn't get strength training in like I usually do. I am not happy about that but next week I will be back on track.
Yesterday our friend came over with his little girl for swimming and today we are going to our friend's fish fry. We also spent one day working on cleaning up our bonus room. It has been a really good week, got a few things done around here, got in more exercise than I have in a long time, and here is the really cool part...I got to my goal weight! That is pretty exciting and now I am shifting gears and thinking about how to KEEP IT OFF THIS TIME! It is a must. I joined a maintenance team here on SP and I am thinking about adding calories but within reason. I think that is going to be hard for me....several times this week I didn't eat enough calories. But when I get back to my regular schedule with work next week things should be a little easier. I am also wondering if I will end up losing more weight because frankly, I look thin, but I still have a lot of flab. I am working on toning and strength but still getting cardio in to burn that fat so I am not sure. I am at the weight where I have been in the past when I have been at my fittest and healthiest, but I have never been this flabby before so I am not sure how this is going to go.
Well, now I have to look up fried blue gill to see how many calories that has....I am sure it probably has a ton! Hope that everyone is having a lovely Labor Day weekend!
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