Monday, October 29, 2007
It's been difficult the last 3 weeks as I keep treading water and trying to keep my chin up. I miraculously stayed the same for 2 weeks and then yesterday when I weighed in, I was up 3.2 lbs. Back to 179.6 pounds when one month ago (9/30) I was 175. Creeping, creeping back and it makes me nervous. I can feel every pound, and it feels uncomfortable physically as well as emotionally.
Old habits and ideas have a way of invading my new ways of thinking and it's an internal tug of war. October-November-December have always been tough in the past. First it's my birthday on October 25, which isn't just a one day celebration. I have 3 good friends that I usually have lunch out with, plus my sister, so it's a week-long event. I suggested to DH that he and I just go out to breakfast instead of dinner and I actually enjoyed that better. On to Halloween, although this year I didn't buy ANY of those little chocolate candy bars, so that was a win....Kudos for me, parden the pun. My biggest weakness is pumpkin cookies that are only around during October. I have to remind myself that I can get my pumpkin from soup instead, thank-you very much! My brother, sister-in-law, nephew (brother's oldest son) and his wife and baby are coming this weekend. It's a whirl-wind visit because they have lots of family to see, so just 2 days. But we're all going out to dinner on Saturday, and DH and I are making a big breakfast Sunday morning (waffles, pancakes, sausage and bacon, oh my!) and dinner (much better: bar-b-que chicken, roasted potatoes, tossed salad and 3 different kinds of cooked veggies). I've been fighting with myself every day, telling myself that it's not necessary for me to bake two kinds of muffins, 2 pies AND apple crisp! I'm just like my mother....she used to go all out with food and desserts whenever we visited. Thanksgiving is not one of my favorite days and I'm not much in to all the food and preparation and clean-up, but DH loves all of it, including the 2 week's worth of leftovers. I absolutely dislike having all that extra food around and it's a meal that's loaded with starchy foods--mashed potatoes, butternut squash, peas, stuffing, rolls. I always bake a lot for Christmas and I've decided ahead of time that it's not necessary. Last year I made these huge platters of different cookies for the grandchildren, but I think the adults ate most of them, hee-hee! And we're all wanting to lose weight. I'm going to have to arm wrestle with myself to be strong and "PUT DOWN THE COOKIE SHEET". I have to say that I always breathe a sigh of relief on New Year's Day because there are no more tempting food holidays until Easter. But why does it have to be about food? Just because that's the way it is and always has been? I'd like to start a new tradition of just being present with my loved ones and enjoy them, and less focus on the food and goodies. Keep it simple and stress-free. Less is more in the cooking and baking department!
Yes, I am turning things around as of today. I did very well today, stayed within my calories, ate healthfully, did my T-Tapp and my 3.5 mile walk, and felt good. I do feel so much better in every regard when I'm following my plan. Makes me wonder why I veer off track when all that does is make me feel miserable. I am determined to lose during these next 2 months. I'll do it by keeping it basic, keeping it simple, and continuing to keep my goals in the forefront of my mind at all times. Getting into the 160's would be the absolute BEST Christmas present I could ever give myself.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Today was not a good day. Every October we get the annual enrollment for our company's Medical Plan (both DH and I retired from the same company). I've been retired for 3 years and the medical plan cost has gone up each year by about $10 a month (and usually some additional co-pays)...we can handle that. I got the package in the mail today and the lowest cost of the 3 plans I had to choose from was over $400/month where I was paying $37/month. It was even worse for my DH, and turns out if I pay $680/mo. and carry him under me it saves a total of $100. My first reaction was that of fear, anxiety and panic. That evolved into depression and I couldn't stop crying. Then I got to anger. You put blood, sweat and tears into a company for 31 years and then when you retire they keep taking away benefits. Once I calmed down a little, I figured it all out on paper and just decided that we'd have to make it work, even if it meant cutting costs elsewhere (i.e., acceptance). I have to have faith that it will all work out. After a LONG while, I starting counting our blessings and being grateful that at least we don't have a mortgage and have no loans or credit debt. Just the basics: insurance, taxes, utilities, groceries, gas, etc. (which do add up!). So I moved right up the emotional scale to gratitude and feel a little better even though the situation won't change.
The thing is, all I wanted to do was comfort myself with food. I had bought these pumpkin cookies that are like a whoopie pie with a cream cheese filling. They only have them at the grocery store in the fall and they're my favorite. There are 3 in a container. I hid them in the cupboard and ate one in secret.....***ding-ding-ding....warning! warning!...this is a bad sign of a past behavior that leads you into the danger zone!!!!!!!!****
Wow! that siren in my head was loud!!!! So it woke me up enough to go up to my computer and write in this blog to get all my feelings out. Now, I am going downstairs and take the pumpkin cookies out of hiding and confess to DH that I had intended to eat all 3 of them in private, but now I am sharing the last 2 with him on a special ocassion (like maybe my birthday tomorrow!).
I guess I am making some progress. I feel better. It's going to be alright, I just know it is.
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Always striving, never arriving used to be my status quo. I often think that my biggest fear is actually getting to my goal weight....what on earth will I ever occupy my mind with if it's not thoughts of losing weight? My preoccupation with gaining, losing, eating, not eating, exercising, not exercising, had become a full-time hobby. Every vacation, celebration, and holiday were centered around thoughts of what I shouldn't eat, and the joy of the moment was always dampened by thoughts that I wish I were thinner and looked better...and....the event would be so much more pleasurable if I didn't have to deal with this weight. My degree of happiness was determined by a number on the scale, the size I wore, and the way I looked. This pattern has been going on since high school--that's over 38 years!
While working on the physical me, it's equally important to take care of the mental and emotional me. That's why I believe that it's good to take my time and lose the weight slowly and in a healthy way. It's tempting to say that I'd like to lose 'X' number of pounds by my birthday, by Christmas, by my one-year anniversary with Spark (3/1/08), etc. I can figure it out six different ways to Sunday when I can get to my goal losing 2 lbs. a week, 1.5 lbs. a week, or maybe just 1 lb. a week, and on and on. But the only thing that really matters is progress and establishing permanent habits that will be the glue that ensures I will maintain my goal weight forever. It's downright depressing to start spinning out of control in the wrong direction. By practicing good habits deliberately every day, and consciously making decisions that support my goals, over the space of time it takes me to reach my goal weight I will continue these habits unconsciously and without effort. I'll no longer need to think about it. I'll no longer be obsessed by my weight or by food. That's the place to be. Naturally thin people don't give one thought to how many calories they consume and yet they don't overeat. They don't obsess over getting a certain amount of exercise, yet they stay active and are not sedentary. That's my REAL goal...to maintain the best weight for my health while not having to think about it. To have these healthy habits so ingrained in me that it's as natural as breathing.
So here it is....I'm not going to set a time limit to reach a certain weight. I'm not even going to set a definite goal weight. My goal is to eat in a healthy way every day: decrease or eliminate the whites (sugar, flour, salt), reduce then eliminate processed foods, reduce saturated fat, eliminate all trans fats, while increasing substantially fresh vegetables and fruits, whole grains, and also moderate amounts of nuts and seeds. My goal is to stay active every day: walk and strength train regulary, but also significantly reduce sitting time (especially at the computer and TV) and to just MOVE...get outdoors in the warmer weather to do yardwork, garden, wash the car, etc. Get exercise by thoroughly cleaning a few hours during the day. As I focus on establishing these habits, the weight will drop naturally and at a pace that's best for my body. And as I continue to live this way, I'll let my body decide when it wants to stop losing. There's no going on or off this plan....it's just the way it is now and forever.
Monday, October 08, 2007
Iíve been using SparkPeople for 7 months now and have lost 36 lbs. (was 38 but I gained 2 lbs. yesterday and canít bring myself to change my tracker!!!!). I have to say that this is the longest Iíve stayed focused on losing weight before starting to slide backwards. Iíve had my ups and downs, but have stayed constant in never giving up. I donít ever want to be back where I was last winter: feeling depressed, disgusted with my appearance, pains in my chest that scared me, getting winded going up stairs, and just generally feeling unhappy and out of control.
In the dictionary, complacency is defined as: ďa feeling of quiet pleasure or security, often while unaware of some potential danger, defect, or the like; self-satisfaction or smug satisfaction with an existing situation, condition, etc.Ē After doing the same things for a period of time and even after being successful, itís easy to get over-confident and cut corners a bit. Lately, Iíve not been logging into my tracker every day. Iíve not bothered to measure my portions. A whole weekís worth of emails from Spark have piled up in my inbox unread. Iíve been consistent with exercise and thatís what has really saved me from true disaster. I managed to break my plateau a few weeks ago by re-focusing my efforts and renewing my commitment. But once I broke out into the 170ís, I began to get sloppy again. Little Miss Fancy Pants got into a size 12 and then started feeling a bit invincible. I mean, who buys 8 pints of their favorite ice cream (Breyers Mint Chocolate Chip) just because theyíre on sale 8 for $8 !!!!!! Oh yes, I actually did that a couple weeks ago. I tossed them all in the downstairs upright freezer with the intention of having Ĺ cup once in a while and theyíd last for at least 6 months. Who was I kidding??!!!??? Iím down to 4 pints. I want to be a person who can improve my relationship with food and I havenít given up complete hope that one day I will. But for now, bringing any tempting food into the house HAS to set off sirens and red flashing danger lights. I am promising myself and everyone who reads this that I WILL NOT TOUCH THE ICE CREAM !!!!! My husband will enjoy eating it and he doesnít have a problem with just having a little once in a while.
Iíve come too far and thereís no turning back. Iím only 17 lbs. from the goal I set back in March. I remember when I set a goal of 160 it seemed so incredibly far away and yet now I can actually see it. I feel so darned good! Yesterday I wore my size 14 jeans which are now my comfy, loose fitting jeans. I used to hold my breath to pull on my size 18 jeans and couldnít wait to get them off to put on a pair of XL sweat pants with elastic waist band. No food can give me the amount of pleasure that feeling good inside and out 24/7 can!
Time to reign it in yet again. Measure, track, motivate. Visit othersí Spark Pages, my teams, and the community boards daily. Read my Spark emails and articles daily. Go to the recipes and try some new healthy and delicious meals. Take the time to plan my dayís activities and meals, and stick with it. Visualize my success. Keep re-kindling the fire. Take pride in my accomplishments while continuing to push myself to even greater achievements. Do my personal best each day while mixing it up and making it fun. Itís an on-going process. Itís my new life. Iím in control of my own health destiny.
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Those of you who know me here know that I've been on this crazy plateau for months. The pounds have come off very slowly and I just left the 180 decade after being there for 15 weeks total. My eating still could use a lot of improvement...I have a tendancy to go over my calorie limit 4 out of 7 days during the week. BUT, my workouts have been consistent. I have never skipped my walk since last January, and I push myself to go faster with good form (shoulders back, suck that tummy in!). And I've been doing T-Tapp since March and I truly think it's been the key to my inch loss....because here's the good part:
Yesterday I was out doing some grocery shopping and decided to challenge myself to get to the next size. I remembered how ecstatic I was when I went from 18 to 16 and then to 14. I'd been at all 3 sizes during my life so I already had the smaller sizes tucked away. I did not own even one size 12 because I'd never gotten to it, at least not in the last 30 years. So, I decided to stop in K-Mart and get an inexpensive size 12 jeans as an incentive. They had a size 14 slim cut pair on sale for $7 I couln't pass up and then I picked out a pair of size 14 relaxed fit black jeans and a pair of size 12 relaxed fit blue jeans and headed to the dressing room. I didn't expect the slim cuts to fit, but was thrilled when I zipped them up and they looked good....not baggy in the seat like my current jeans....the first place I lose is in the booty, and my tummy area is the hardest to get rid of. Then, when I tried on the black ones, they seemed to have a lot of room. So, I tried on the 12's and THEY FIT!!!! I mean, not lay on the bed to zip and hold your breath fit, I could honestly wear them in public! So I ended up getting a size 12 in the black too and happily went to the check-out.
The saying may be corny and trite by now, but it is so true that NOTHING TASTES AS GOOD AS THIN FEELS. It motivated me so much to do even better with the eating. I truly believe that the T-Tapp workout has shaved off inches and has cinched in my tummy area. I didn't quite believe the claims in the book written by Teresa Tapp, "Fit and Fabulous in Fifteen Minutes" that you could possibly lose an entire size in a matter of weeks. But now I know that it IS true. I'd been quite consistent with the workout, pushing myself to do my very best and doing the 14 days in a row bootcamp several times during the past few months. Although the scale hadn't budged much, I thought I noticed my legs and stomach appearing to be getting smaller. I haven't taken my measurements since August 1 and I'm going to take them again on October 1.
So, don't let the scale or a plateau get you down! If you've been working hard, go out and try on some smaller sizes and take your measurements. You may be pleasantly surprised and it will spur you on to KEEP GOING!
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