Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Yes, I've been hit by depression...it's in the genes because my mother battled it constantly. It comes around this time of year, settles in for a while and then thankfully leaves by Feb-March. This time, I'm booting it out early--not welcome here anymore!
Yesterday I felt like there was a damp blanket over me. I ate everything I thought would comfort me, including a big bowl of Breyer's mint chip ice cream and popcorn with melted butter for lunch (eek, that's hard to admit!). I did manage to go out for my walk afterwards because I am truly addicted to walking and it always makes me feel good during and afterward. As I finished and was walking into my driveway, a car was driving by slowly beeping and a woman waving. It was someone I had worked with who happened to be in the neighborhood and surprised to see me and happy because it's been several years. I invited her in and we chatted for a short while. She had just retired and was so excited. She's single and her parents gave her a house in New Hampshire that's 10 minutes from the ocean. She went on and on about allof the things she's going to do, etc. I couldn't help but think that I'm no longer excited about retirement, especially since the medical went up and I'm a bit concerned about income. I don't feel as if I do any significant with my days. She marveled at our land out back and my perrenial garden and when she spotted my birdbath, she said she was going to make one. She has all kinds of projects lined up. When she left, I felt even more depressed. My husband came home shortly after and we took the dog on a roadtrip to stop at Sam's Club and the grocery store. I bought these cookies I love at the bakery section. There are 4 and they're big...a crunchy sugar cookie with chocolate icing, they're called Chinese cookies. I only ate soup for supper, but ate 3 of those cookies in secret. I felt AWFUL! My tummy felt bloated, my spirits were down. I went to bed thinking that this is NOT the way I want to feel and I am going to nip it in the bud!
So this morning I got up and made cooked oatmeal with old fashioned steel-cut oats, chopped apple, cinnamon, chopped walnuts and maple syrup. It tasted yummy and was comfort food that's actually got good healthy stuff in it. I drank my green tea without honey to save some calories because of the maple syrup I'd had on the oatmeal and it actually tasted good just plain. It's warmed up a lot today and the sun in peering out, which helps my mood a lot. I'm going to do my T-Tapp toning, go for my walk, and then start cleaning up my flower beds and putting things away for the season. Lunch will be a nice big salad with lots of fresh vegetables and greens. These are the foods that give me energy and vitality. That sugary, fatty stuff just makes me feel groggy and puffy.
I feel good today and have decided that this is the way I will feel from now on. I have the strength to choose. It's unrealistic to think that every day will be great and that I'll do everything I set out to do. But the one thing I know for sure is that I can always bounce back. That's the thing that will see me through to achieve my goals...resiliency!!!!!
Thanks to all my friends who have supported and cheered me on during these many weeks of challenges and struggles. I'm looking forward to blogging some great success stores from here on out!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Sunday weigh ins have not been pleasant these last several weeks. I skipped it last week, but today I took a deep breath and stepped on....up 2 lbs. since 2 weeks ago. I haven't lost the recipe, I've just not put in the right ingredients. I know what I need to do. I have to remember what it was like in the beginning to see progress. I used to actually look forward to getting on the scale each week. It's because I was faithful in loggin in my food and I knew I was eating the right things and staying within my calorie range. Thank goodness my exercise hasn't faltered. I feel very blue today, despite the nice blue sky and sunshine. Walking outside always makes me feel better.
Time to have a real sit-me-down and evaluate what's going on. Is it my anxiety about the holidays? I really don't like them and am always relieved when January 1 rolls around. I'm keeping it very simple this year in terms of decorating, gift-giving, baking, and all the hoop-la that can get you feeling stressed. I often struggle with depression during this time and can get into some very deep, dark moods if I let myself go down that road. I miss my parents and I hurt inside that I didn't have children. I love my husband dearly and he is a wonderful man who is so good to me, but we often do not share the same interests and I don't consider him my soul mate. I might possibly have an unrealistic fantasy about what that is and it really doesn't exisit. I never found my passion and worked all those years at a stressful job I detested instead of finding something that gave me joy and purpose. I sometimes feel like my life has been pointless and I have nothing to offer.
But then I think about my beautiful home and the fact that I did work for enough years to be able to retire and enjoy being home. I love being able to walk every day, keep my house neat and clean, take the time to cook healthy meals, keep my flower gardens looking beautiful, and am free of stress. Even though my medical insurance payment has gone up substantially in January and will eat up half my pension, at least we don't have any debts and we're not at a point where we are forced to go back to work. My material needs have lessened and I am more in tune with things that are most important and give me joy that money can't buy. One of those things is my health. It has improved immensely since I retired and I treasure waking up and feeling good with not only an absence of pain or illness, but a sense of well-being, energy, and peacefulness. My sister is my best friend and we like the same things. I enjoy just going out to lunch and spending the whole day chatting with her. Yes, I have a lot to be thankful for and I keep reminding myself every day.
I know I'll get back to losing. I am in this for the long haul, knowing that there are bumpy times that aren't as easy to maneuver. I need to be kind to myself when I'm not perfect and know that I am making progress which is all that counts. I sighed this morning as I posted my weight in my ticker. Not to worry, I will get past this. I am starting a new week and again renewing my commitment. I will keep doing this every day of the rest of my life because like they say, success is just a matter of getting up more times than you fall down.
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
Things aren't going as well as I'd like, but it's about to change starting right now!
It's been a real rollercoaster ride since June. I was stuck in a plateau between 184 and 187 for two months, then stuck between 186 and 182 for two months, and finally broke through to 179 mid-September, only to get stuck again between 179 and 175 for the last 7 weeks! I was back up to 179.6 two weeks ago. It's been difficult lately to stay consistent. Last weekend I had a full house of family visiting and ate more than usual, slept and exercised less. I skipped my weigh in last Sunday because I was totally off my schedule over the entire last week and just couldn't face another gain. I often start out the day with a strong conviction, but when I falter, I tend to give up on logging in my food. It feels SO GOOD to be eating healthy, exercising, and losing. Why am I making these other choices which result in me feeling miserable, both physically and emotionally?
The thing is, the difference between my starting weight of 213 and current weight 179 is quite noticeable and I get A LOT of comments from everyone on it. Just yesterday I was outside with the dog and my next-door neighbor happened to be on her porch. She kept telling me how great I looked and how she wishes she could lose weight like I have. My sister-in-law who visited mentioned repeatedly how wonderful I looked and "keep doing what you're doing because you look so fantastic". I cringe inside, knowing that I'm not doing that great right now and fearful that I'm going to keep backsliding. It's not what I want to do. I can still wear my size 14's quite comfortably, but I feel a little pudge in my tummy coming back. I tried the 12's on and got them zipped, but definitely too tight in the waist to wear comfortably. It's not too late to catch it. It's actually NEVER too late, but the more I spiral backwards, the harder it is to catch it and recover.
The anxiety of November and December hangs overhead. In past years, I could easily gain 10 pounds over those months. I do feel differently this year. SparkPeople has made a big difference. I love coming here for all the advice and encouragement. And blogging my fears and disappointments helps to get it all out and clear it out so I can feel better. When I finally make it to my goal (and I will!), I can go back and read the times when I struggled but persevered. That'll help me, and others, know that it is possible to overcome those obstacles and succeed.
I'm still determined and I know I will get back on track. In the very beginning, I was excited, enthused and enjoying the process. It helped that I was seeing a loss every single week. I think that finding the fun in living healthy is the key. This is not drudgery. Lugging around extra pounds, feeling fatigued, feeling depressed, frumpy and self-conscious....now THAT'S painful !!! So I just need to snap out of it, get back up, muster up all the enthusiasm and commitment I know I have inside, and start doing what I WANT to do....the things that make me feel good about myself.
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.
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