Tuesday, April 16, 2013
This was part of a correspondence with a friend on SparkPeople, but I thought it would make a good blog entry.
I'm trying to be gentle with an over 100 lb planned weight loss.. celebrating each pound and rewarding 5 pound increments. I want to be healthier, have a better appearance, and a longer life than I would otherwise have. I want to be able to easily ride rides at the fair and to not worry whether the middle seat seatbelt will reach far enough for me if I wear my fluffy coat.
I am stalled right now, but that isn't really surprising since I was all motivated for march and then promptly rolled off the wagon at around the 1st of April with tracking and other things. Need to get back on the ball, regardless of whether I earn my April consistency trophy or not.
I've divided my goals up into four areas (SuperGoals ... lol) and set goals in each one.. I am repurposing the tracking calendar I bought from the SparkStore to reflect effort spent in each area. If I do everything I can in a day, it gets highlighted, if not, it doesn't. All four areas earn me an almond in my attitude mug (1 almond=$1) no areas highlighted loses me an almond and puts it in the negative mug (to be redeemed or counted against the remaining almonds in the attitude mug at the end of the 35 day period)
It turns out I'm doing this on the first day of the next page of the tracking calendar exactly, so I got to start where it stopped and write my goals in the slots without all my previous writing.
I'm also trying to kick my butt and convince myself that better late than never in regards to the #riseandshine challenge. Even if the challenge is over before I'm consistent, I still want to do eat and do a routine in the morning, and then shower and get ready for the day.
Fitness and Weight Loss
1. Rejoin the #riseandshine challenge. I choose both options, meaning I will eat my breakfast and exercise first thing when I get up. Also, I will get up before 8am... not 4pm, even on days that I have nothing going on outside of the house (also known to be called by me "unstructured days")
2. I will increase my Cardio to 30 min/day, 5 days per week, to be done in the morning after I get up.
3. I will eat less than 1550 calories a day. (Generous I know it is, but I've been going over)
4. Eat a min of 2fruits/vegs per day (Fast break goal)
5. Drink 8c of water/day (Fast break goal)
6. Keep up with SparkTeams: Butterfly People, Positive Bloggers, and Accountability Partnership to the Finish Line (and sparkcoach of course)
7. Keep up with Accountability Partners and report DAILY (it seems like if I skip one, or mean to post in the morning, I miss three, which is not good)
1. (told you it was embarrassing :( ) I will Shower, Shampoo, Scrub, Shave, Deodorize and Perfume myself EVERY DAY
2. I with get 1 haircut a minimum of once every two months.
3. I will use a facial cleanser twice a day
4. (embarrassing again) I will brush teeth, floss, and rinse a minimum of twice a day.
5. I will use skin softeners and lotions when needed
6. I will USE whatever makeup and cleansers I buy through Avon (currently shower gel, deodorant, perfume, facial cleanser, lip gloss, nail polish, and mascara-- I don't have a full makeup set yet, I 'm still working on it, because when I decided that I would do this my makeup was all 8 years old, so I threw it out, so I would have to buy fresh [my friend is selling Avon, so it seems like a win/win]) on a DAILY basis. Currently I'm only really good at using the nail polish, and that probably because it doesn't have to be done every day to look good. (At least I've quit biting my nails since i started painting them).
7. Once I am actively and consistently taking care of my teeth again, 2 to 4 weeks from now, I will use the teeth whitening system I purchased and see if it helps my teeth's color any.
Book Reading and Vocabulary/Knowledge Building
1. I will read a min of 15min to 30min a night before bed
2. I will keep a vocabulary notebook of new and interesting words/terms
3. I will limit my TV to a total of 7hrs per week. (One hour per day but allowing myself to bank them to use more on some days)
4. Use the books I've bought with crayons to mark don't know and want to come back to
Bible and Relationship
1. I will read in the bible, a min (cringe) of 1 ch per day
2. I will pick a book for devotions and read in it a minimum of 15 min a day.
3. Stop to consciously pray directly at least once per day
Sunday, April 14, 2013
Most challenging was having an unstructured day and ending up spending NEARLY ALL of it in bed AGAIN.. Really, if I can''t get up and go, so many other things seem pointless because with sleeping, nothing else constructive is going to happen in that time. In some AA-related things I came across (not an alcoholic, just a fan of the 12 step, moderate lifestyle) they talk about knowing the will of God and making it simple based on things known. Earth-shattering and simple as it is, for an alcoholic God''s will is that they be sober.. Its something that can be inferred or assumed as a basic will. For me, Gods will might be that I stay awake. Obviously I can''t stay awake 24/7 but beyond the 8-10 hrs a night.. that I be awake, because I can''t do anything, work on myself, work for others, work on my goals and dreams, if I am sleeping the time away.
Sunday, April 07, 2013
The next part of this exercise has me deciding what my future self would tell me at this moment if she was to reach back into the past and give me a phone call.
What I would tell myself at this point is, life requires that you get more independent and creative. These are scary things, but completely accomplishable and doable, and your life will be so much the richer for it. Sure getting a car is a scary, big expense, but the wheels will do so much for your life. Forrest, Nan, other friends, and your parents aren't going to be around forever. If you want to maintain your quality of life you are going to have to get creative. Being independent also prevents you from being at someone's mercy that requires large amounts of payment or who feels used by your needs.
It is okay to stand up for yourself and for having healthy relationships or none. No amount of afterthoughts and warm fuzzies make the occasional threat to yourself or your partner okay. It is alright to stand up for and to look for positive relationships. It is alright to let go of those relationships when they quit being healthy or positive.
You will find friends in your area if you work really hard at it. You will find people with your values and your beliefs and they will value you. Sick friendships are not worth the drain they cause spiritually, mentally, and the physical toll the stress takes on you. They are worse than none. Always look for soulmates in everything you do and everywhere you go. Remember that some people are gifted to you for a time and then you have to let them go on to another phase in their life. For all concerned. It does no good to let others treat you or your other half badly and it teaches them that bad manners are okay to use with other people as well.
I would tell myself, regardless of how many friends I have, to keep up the good work with the diet and exercise and healthy living. I would say it is worth it to keep up your appearance and to go on and make the best out of every moment. I would tell myself to take extra care of your other half. For people that understand you that well, there is only one granted you in a lifetime, and he is yours. Respect him, nurture him, and do as much to support his health as you can, because you only get one.
I would say that health is worth the effort of calorie restriction and extra exercise. I would say that I treasure each additional day I can spend with my family. I would say that my early effort to reduce my weight has resulted in me being able to use my joints longer without restrictions and difficulty in movement. I enjoy being able to eat freshly made entrees and salads made from scratch and the tastes of new foods that I've only learned about making through the changes I've experienced in my diet over the 10 years, and I would tell myself so.
I would enjoy dancing and moving swiftly. I would tell myself that I enjoy being attractive to my partner, even if religiously we are merely affectionate to each other instead of being sexually engaged. I would tell myself that it is worth it, to see the smile on his face when I come up with a new outfit or look or perfume that I like.
I would tell myself that the expense of a gym was worth it. As soon as I am able to save up and be consistent attending a place to go for it. I enjoy the treadmill, the machines, the balance ball, the kickboxing, the pool.. everything but the elliptical.. and even that is becoming more tolerable as time goes on. I enjoy packing my gym bag and looking for gently used exercise clothing at Goodwill, even though I could fit a normal store's sizes now.
Sunday, April 07, 2013
First, in this action step, SparkCoach asks that we fast forward to ten years in the future.
10 years in the future
It is 2023 and I am 47 years old. I still live in Auburn, WA in the apartment with my significant other, and no, we still are not married. We continue to be committed to each other solely however.
My parents having given up driving every day out to Auburn, and we have saved up and procured a car. We have given in and gotten either a tablet or a device that only plays DVD's to entertain us between appointments. Roger and I both have new casemanagers that we actually like and respect.
We share a home with a shelter puppy (actually more likely, a senior dog, due to my preferences) that we went out to purchase after a period of mourning passed for our current dog, Mickey. He or she likes our sedate life and going out for walks with us in the park nearby.
We have invested in more kitchen equipment and have a working blender, full size food processor, and coffee grinder (for grinding spices). We cook the majority of our meals now, from scratch or with minimal processed ingredients (like processed cream of/chicken/celery/mushroom soups). We keep a few frozen meals on hand in case we don't have time to cook a certain night and still keep our schedule of going to bed early.
Holly has passed away due to her progressive illness, so I no longer have that to go to in the evening on Sundays, but I attend Holy Family in the morning and cherish my evenings for a deeper devotional time by myself in bible study and reflection.
I no longer get to see most of my Bible Study friends most of the time, but I stay in contact with them online and over the phone. I still order Avon from Bonnie, ,or from someone she has referred me to after she no longer sells it. I attend weight watchers and have made the majority of my friends and acquaintances from there. I attend at least once a week, sometimes multiple times. I am a lifetime member and have maintained my maintenance weight for a minimum of six years.
I volunteer at 2 places each week, part-time for about 4 hours a shift. These places are in Auburn and are easy to get to. The rest of the time I spend at home, in meetings, or at the gym. In downtime I believe in keeping myself vibrant. I follow a reading schedule for myself that I develop myself, in the interest of expanding my knowledge and vocabulary. I follow a varied exercise routine that includes strength and flexibility as well as cardio. I enjoy taking photos and updating my SparkPage and Facebook with the results.
When I open my eyes in the morning I feel it is a day rife with possibilities. I instantly think of all the things I am going to do and accomplish that day. I instantly make my way to the kitchen for 4oz of juice mixed with 1/2 c to 1 c of water and either eggs or a high fiber cereal to start my day. After my workout I reward myself with coffee or an espresso. I renew my fragrance of choice, and alternate between at least two (one day one, next day other) so I don't get too used to the smell and drench myself with it. I hear Roger snoring as I finish up on the balance board and get my coffee and I snuggle down with our senior pup to watch an old rerun of a Joyce Meyer TV podcast to start my day right.
We go to volunteer and to appointments and to see my parents on holidays and birthdays by car, that Roger drives. We actively visit friends and acquaintances, at least once a month for each one friend. My parents do a lot of traveling and we like to get together with them when they return to see pictures. We live a simple life, intentionally. We don't do a lot of traveling or go many places far away.
We do, however, take breaks from the modern world and go hiking/camping with our phones and ipods turned off. We enjoy reconnecting with nature.. big trees, big rocks, rivers, lakes.. We can't be gone for long, due to the area we live in and the constraints of our medical obligations, but we go enough to reset each year. We have a car and participate in Volksmarches (organized walks) across Washington State.
In how I move my body, I am very much more co-ordinated, hand and foot, than I have ever been. I bellydance and shimmy, I enjoy step-aerobics, I've even branched into kickboxing after an initial period of trepidation since our apartment is so small. I take classes at the gym or pop in DVD's at home. I am partial to DVD's or download because of the transitory nature of streaming. I like to KNOW if I like a routine that it will be available as part of my routines indefinitely and not just till the next software update, rotation, or until the streaming provider loses the license to show it.
For strength I use machines at the gym and my XMark Adjustable Weights that I invested in even before I reached my goal weight. They are showing their age, but still usable. I use handweights and wrist weights to up my cardio routines now and make them more challenging. I am working on pull ups. I can already do regular pushups and hold a plank several minutes. I can bench 100 pounds easily at the gym. My body responds to the movement I do by getting stronger.
I am just diabetic. I held it off for several years by eating healthy and exercising, but my genetic makeup and early predisposition has caught up with me. Rather than view it as a death sentence I take my diet and medication seriously and work to minimize its effect on my body. My outlook is bright and my triglycerides, cholesterol, and iron levels are all in line. Although I have become diabetic, I consider myself to be healthier than I was when I started my program in 2013. I enjoy each life to the fullest and look forward to each new day.
When I look in the mirror I see myself significantly grayer and with pronounced wrinkling. It upsets me a little bit because I don't feel so old and because I wish I'd started things sooner, before the fat meant that weight loss would make my skin so loose. But I also see it as a sign of progress. I reached this age! I attempted suicide and there were so many times I might not have made it, and I got here! Also, the skin is loose because I DID LOSE THE WEIGHT! I am able to be a healthier me and live longer because I'm no longer so heavy. Plus I look better because I'm letting myself wear makeup again, because once again I care about my appearance. I have a low maintenance haircut that I update at least once every two months, so it dosn't look scraggly ever again. I'm taking care of my teeth, using whitening toothpaste, and have given up diet colas and diet dr pepper in favor or water, one cup of coffee in the morning, and the occasional cup of tea each day, so my teeth are less yellow, even though Roger won't let me repeat a tooth whitening regimen I did 10 years ago, for fear it rots my enamel right out of my head.
When I look below my collarbones, I look skinny but curved. I have muscles, and they show. Not like bodybuilder muscles, but giving definition to my form. I work on abs religiously, but am not able to see them due to excess skin. I wear one piece swim suits that have skirts on them or with skirt cover ups attached to help the skin problem. Most of the time its not visible under my clothes. I've made peace with the fact that I am now a B cup rather than a C or maybe a barely B. My chest size still makes finding a bra difficult. I enjoy not bouncing around everywhere, not needing underwires, and being able to find sportsbras that will work for me.
I make sure my clothing fits. I am not as swayed by ideas of quality and permanence as some, because I know I get tired of wearing things eventually. I spend money on my foundation garments and mainly wear t-shirts and jeans, except to church and family functions. I've gotten my ears re-pierced and am sporting one set of earrings in my ears at all times, so that I never have to re-pierce them and spend that money, again. I like studs and drops and small hoops. I like pearls and cubic zirconia, sometimes together. I like sterling silver and silvertone (as long as it doesn't have nickel or anything that will turn my skin green)
What brings me the most joy on this day is, fellowshipping with my friends and writing with my Bible Study friends, seeing my other half sleep and playing his video games, petting my dog, and taking care of my body.
Each night I put my head to my pillow I feel tired. Physically tired, mentally grateful for the pillow and grateful for another day I got to spend on the planet. Tomorrow I plan to do it all again. This is my ideal life -- to live with my significant other, near my parents, until we are old and gray and the Lord takes us away.
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