Friday, February 03, 2012
As you know, it is Friday, and therefore weigh-in day. So this morning, I dutifully jumped on the scale. Now, I should mention, I have a pretty low-tech scale. It only measures to the nearest half-pound, it doesnít measure my body fat composition, or make my coffee, or whatever else these new-fangled scales do. This morning, it decided to toy with me.
First, it blinked ď148Ē at me, and I thought ďsurely NOT possible.Ē As I was still bleary-eyed and half asleep, I reset the bugger, and tried again. Again, 148. For whatever reason, I tried yet again, because I am a sucker for tempting fate. On the third time, it said 148.5, and refused to change itís mind back to 148 after that, despite my pleading ďpretty please with a cherry on top?Ē and guaranteeing that Iíd be itís best friend, and re-weighing myself about 8 more times. I guess Iíll keep my human best friend.
But, yíknow . . . I donít care what that mouthy scale has to say, anyway. So, 148.5 it is, officially or unofficially. I suspect, due to the rounding to the half pound, Iím probably somewhere in the 148.2 or 148.3 range, but frankly, Iím not that fussed about it. Although, I may be investing in a new scale soon, and winging this one straight off the nearest bridge.
Iím quite happy with this. It means Iím down 2 lbs. from last week, 1 lb. down from the week before (pre-hormone rampage), and more than 5 lbs down overall. It puts me ahead (AHEAD!) of my goal timeframe (which dictates ďthou shalt weigh 148 pounds by the week of February 13Ē), and represents almost 25% of the total amount I want to lose (the 24 pound goal, not the 19 Ė freakiní sweet!!!). And honestly, truly, IknowitsoundslikealoadofhooeybutIswear, I am WAY more interested in seeing my progress in inches, when I take measurements again in two weeks. Argh, it seems like a lifetime from now, but I am determined not to ruin it by taking them early.
148.5. Cool beans.
But, on to the real point of todayís ramblings: my butt hurts. And I!AM!SO!EXCITED! See, due to whatever circumstances, be they a genetic propensity for superhuman glute muscles (VERY cleverly disguised as flabby, un-toned hams, I assure you), or simply a built-up tolerance for pain as a result of 5 years of yoga, my butt NEVER gets sore from working out. My thighs, occasionally, but never my butt.
Well, evidently, I broke through some sort of wall this week because MAN OH MAN it hurts today. Wednesday, I did some lunges with a shoulder press (or something like that) with 5-lb girl-weights. Last night I did yoga. Somewhere at the intersection of lunges with weights and yoga, is the formula for a sore posterior. In case you ever wondered.
So while Iím rambling, can I just tell you why today is a great day? Because I had a really aggravating morning, post-weigh-in, until I realized that I was being a whiny goober and needed to get a grip, so I did, and here is why:
1. Itís Friday. Really, I donít even need another reason other than that.
2. The coworker I carpool with is out of the office today, so I got to commute aaaaaaall by myself this morning. No forced, awkward chit chat. No listening to the same awful Top 40 radio station that plays the same awful songs every day. No fearing for my life as we ride the bumper of the car ahead of us. Phew.
3. No audience, due to #2, meaning I got to unabashedly rock out the whole way to work, and will get to rock out even harder the whole way home. Sure, the guys in the pickup truck ahead of me this morning were probably entertained, or perhaps alarmed, but hey . . . Iím so far beyond the ability to be embarrassed right now, I might as well have flashed them. I really donít care.
4. Friday is Jeans Day at work. I LIVE and BREATHE for Jeans Day.
5. My sore butt looks awesome in these jeans.
Hope your Friday is going swimmingly, and that your weekend is filled with raucous displays of foolishness and fun. And ladies, I canít tell you how much your comments on my blog make me smile, laugh, and snort with good cheer, in the middle of a dead-silent office filled with boring, diligent worker-bees. Especially the comments from yesterday. Awwww shucks, you all are too kind! Thank you!
Thursday, February 02, 2012
Itís time. Time to speak my truth. Show all my cards. The full Monty.
Well . . . that might be overstating it a little bit. There will be no nudity. After all, this is a family website. Think of the children!
I should start by saying that I have always been a very, very, VERY private person. From childhood. From birth. Itís in my genes. Never mind the fact that Iíve been blurting out whatever thought-goo happens to be floating around my brain into blog-form the last few weeks! I assure you, it is QUITE out of character. But liberating, nonetheless! So now I wish to carry that forth into new territories.
Until now Iíve been vague, evasive, and overall cowardly - for ABSOLUTELY NO GOOD REASON. Iíve taken something of which I should be proud and eager to talk about, and somehow made it into a source of guilt and even something that feels sorta, oddly, like shame. I hereby admit that this is stupid. So, no more!
When I first decided that Iíd had enough, and I was tired of being the Big Fat Friend, and wanted to feel healthy and strong and attractive for the first time in my life, I had NO idea where to start. I hadnít found Spark People yet. I wanted to do it on my own, in private, in the dark if possible, and have no one notice.
So I started getting a little exercise here and there. In my apartment. By myself. In private. Oftentimes quite literally in the dark, to be certain my neighbors would not be able to see me sweating like a beast if I turned the lights on (other than the light from the TV). I even turned down the volume on the TV so no one listening would be the wiser (as if any of my neighbors cared anyway). I started tracking what I ate, and then eventually started tracking calories. Keep in mind, this was B.S.P. Before Spark People. It was hard to figure out the calories in foods. It was work. It was a pain in the ass, if you really want the truth. But it worked.
Every day, I kept on keeping on, silently praying that no one would notice. That no one would call me out on the fact that my pants-butt was sagging in a nearly-obscene fashion. Inevitably, though, the comments, questions, and Ė GASP! Ė compliments, started coming.
I dodged. I weaved. I changed the subject. I even avoided people I had not seen in a long time, and avoided going out for dinner or drinks with my close (and mostly already thin) friends so I would not have to make my new, healthy eating habits a public display.
As time went on, and the weight loss more dramatic, the questions got more bold. ďHow many pounds have you lost?Ē ďHow did you lose so much weight?Ē And even ďHow did you get so skinny all of a sudden, do you have an eating disorder?Ē (This one caused me to audibly snort with astonishment. From August of 2008 until April of 2009, I lost about 40 pounds. Thatís less than 4.5 pounds a month. This was not rapid weight loss, folks. Significant? Yes. Consistent? Yes. Rapid? Uhhh, no.)
I refused to discuss the answers to these questions, apart from incoherent mumblings uttered while walking away from the questioner. I wouldnít even tell my mother how many pounds Iíd lost. I still havenít. But, I digress.
In April 2009, I started a new job. I could no longer walk to and from work, and my days got a lot longer, with a 50-60 minute commute each morning and evening. This presented challenges, but I hung in there. I chose to relax a bit, let my body catch up with itself, and see how I did with maintaining. Turns out, not so badly! I think that break actually helped my body reset itís ďset pointĒ Ė the point at which itís comfortable, and the point at which itís not QUITE such a struggle to keep the weight off. But in December 2009, I found Spark People, and I decided it was GAME ON. Challenge ACCEPTED.
By June 2010, with Spark People, I had lost another 10 pounds or so, depending on the day. And I was pretty happy with that. But then my job situation changed . . . again! Though still employed, I was not working in an office. My days were unstructured. I had a lot of free time. I did a lot of things I should have done when I was 21, not 29. Truth be told, I pretty much consumed most of my daily calories in beer. Iím not going to lie to you, here. It.Was.AWESOME. Healthy? Nope. Fun. Hell, yes!
During that time, my weight (by some miracle) didnít fluctuate much. I did exercise quite a bit. Hiking with Skinny Boyfriend. Lots of time for yoga. Started running and such. Until, once again, this past August, another Major Career Adjustment came my way Ė and my butt found itself chained to a desk chair once again. So I started eating a lot healthier, and drinking a lot less, and lo and behold . . . I started to gain weight. What the #$%@???
Then I remembered . . . remembered the comforting OCD-ishness of dutifully entering each and every bite of food into the Nutrition Tracker. The glories of entering your fitness activities, and knowing how many calories you burned. And so I became hooked again Ė but this time in a new way! Somewhere between my last adventure with Spark People and this one, I GOT OVER MYSELF. I stopped being ashamed that I USED TO BE fat. I stopped feeling guilty that I AM NO LONGER FAT. Who feels ashamed of something they ARE NOT? Who feels guilty about bettering themselves, while others remain in their comfortable patterns? Was that my fault? Certainly not!
Iíve realized that there is no shame in having a checkered fat past. I am no longer that person, but I shouldnít have been ashamed of her in the first place. Actually . . . I am that person, just less of her, and much less afraid.
Iíve realized that my overweight family members and friends need to make the leap on their own. They donít need me to push them, so I shouldnít feel guilty for not pushing. They donít need me to teach them, so I shouldnít feel guilty for not trying to teach. The resources are there for them as they were, and are, for me. I should simply be pleased that I can be a good example, and be there to cheer them on, if they should ever decide to make a change.
So the point of all this? Itís an exercise in practice. I want to be open with the people I love and who love me. Iím using all of you as a dress rehearsal, because I know how supportive and non-judgmental you all are. And more than that, you are all incredibly brave in sharing so much of yourselves with strangers - so YOU are MY good example.
The next time I get a compliment, I WILL NOT MUMBLE AND WALK AWAY. I will be gracious, and I will embrace it. The next time someone asks me how much weight Iíve lost, well . . . Iíll give them my best estimate because, really, the scale is fickle. :) The next time someone asks me how I did it, I will tell them.
Last but not least, my (unofficial) official stats. This might be slightly off or may not quite add up, because I sorta forget exactly when/how much/other details, since itís been over such a long course of time.
- My official highest weight ever was about 218 lbs, the year I graduated from college. At the time, I was having issues with my thyroid and was recovering from a severely sprained ankle (which took about 9 months to fully heal).
- My official starting weight in August 2008 was about 196 and change.
- My official starting weight in December 2009, when I joined Spark People was about 156.
- My official lowest weight ever was (I *think*?) 142 or 143. Of course, this lasted all of 8 hours or so. My lowest maintained weight was about 146-147.
- My official starting weight as of January 9, 2012 Ė the Moment of Re-Sparkedness Ė was 154.
- I am 5 feet and 6 inches tall. Give or take a ľ inch. Officially.
- My current weight? . . . well, I guess youíll have to tune in tomorrow. Weigh-in day! Place your bets!
Tuesday, January 31, 2012
So I tracked all my calories and water and whatnot this weekend. It was traumatizing. Iím not sure Iím ready to talk about it yet.
Just kidding, I can talk about it. But really, it was traumatizing. And discouraging, which is why I was in a pouty-faced funk yesterday. Not the food - that was fine, despite a small indulgence or two (mmm . . . bacon). Tracking DID in fact compel me to refuse pizza on Saturday night, and Girl Scout cookies all weekend. In fact, I havenít touched a Thin Mint or even a Samoa YET, despite the fact that my stepfather bought so many boxes of cookies, it looked like we were selling them instead of buying them. Allow me to explain.
You see, due to some odd circumstances, I am currently staying between Skinny Boyfriend's house and my parentís house, as they are both quite a bit closer to work than my apartment. This has presented some unique challenges.
First, there is a reason I refer to my boyfriend as Skinny Boyfriend. He has the metabolism of a hamster running a dead-sprint on a hamster wheel, 24/7. It sickens me. Jerk. He consumes more calories in one meal than I do in an entire day, and thinks it is positively bizarre/ridiculous that I do things like read food labels, and check nutrition data for restaurant menus before we go out to eat. And, darling that he is, he is always polite in offering to share whatever chips/candy/cheesy-poofs he happens to be eating. Luckily, I donít care if Iím hurting his feelings by saying NO. Noooooooooo.
Second, my family is rather prone to fluffiness. Some of that has to do with genetics. Most of it has to do with having some of the laziest, gluttonous, god-awful eating habits Iíve ever had the displeasure to personally witness with my own two eyeballs (see: warehouse of Girl Scout cookies). I wonít go into details here. Letís just say, in some ways, this might actually have helped me wake up and smell the pre-diabetes four years ago. Watching someone else essentially commit Suicide By Cookie (whilst turning half-keg abs into full-keg abs) is incredibly motivating to, um . . . take a different path (post-haste). However, when the aforementioned Someones are persistently waving pizza and cookies and assorted other food-villains under your nose, you get a little weary.
Luckily . . . and yes, I will go ahead and give myself a little pat on the back here . . . I have pretty solid Willpower of Steel when it comes to food (and yes, thereís a BUT ahead of you . . .)
BUT. When it comes to those lovely, fuzzy, buzzy, alcoholic drinky-drinks . . . letís just say Fridays and Saturdays donít go so well, with the calorie tracker. And this, my friends, is incredibly depressing to me. Alcohol is clear, right? Water is clear, right? Why donít they both have zilch for calories?
The answer is: Life is not fair. So now Iím sort of in mourning, and trying to devise an action plan that does not include joining a convent or giving up entirely (I mean giving up counting calories . . . did you think I meant giving up alcohol entirely? HA! Youíre funny.)
Today, however, Iíve chosen to get over it for the time being. I cheated and weighed myself this morning, out of curiosity, and Iím back to where I was pre-hormone rampage, so I am still ahead of my goal timeframe. Also, I feel smaller. My favorite skinny jeans (as in the style, not the size) felt a bit too big on Saturday night.* So something must be happening. I am tempted to cheat and take measurements this week instead of waiting the full month, but I will stand strong! It will be that much sweeter if I wait!
*Note: I own no ďskinny jeansĒ of the ďI will wear these when Iím skinny againĒ variety. Probably because Iíve never been skinny.
Have a great day everyone!
Friday, January 27, 2012
Iiiiiiitís FRIDAY! The weekend draws nigh! Woo hoo! That also means weigh-in day. Woo . . . hoo? Well, okay. I gained a pound this week. But Iím happy with that.
ďHAPPY?!?Ē you exclaim. ďSurely this-here galís gone clean Ďround the bend, yíreckon?!Ē (Admit it . . . thatís what youíre thinking, old-timey Spaghetti Western language and all.)
Alas, no. Prepare for over-sharing. Youíve been warned.
You see, it is the dreaded Time Oí The Month, and therefore, I have gained weight. A measly pound, I scoff! Usually, itís more like FOUR. The same four. Round and round, every month, the same four pounds, on and off, on and off. So one pound is actually WINNING. WwwwwwwINNING. Ladies, I feel you can probably relate. The hormones . . . thereís just no sense in trying to beat them.
Another reason Iím okay with my extra pound? I suspect it may be partly muscle. Not only have my muscles been sore every gosh-darn day for two weeks straight, but I SWEAR and AVOW my thighs are firmer. Iím not sure if itís my imagination, but Iím just going to CHOOSE TO BELIEVE that it is, in fact, reality.
If you need another reason, well, Iíll give you one. Not to gloat or anything [cue shameless gloating], but Iíve been telling that calorie counter whoís boss this past week. And who IS the boss? ME, thatís who. So take THAT, you stupid pound! Iíll be seeing you next Friday . . . in HELL!
Sorry, got a little over-excited there for a moment . . . Anyway, Iíve been having some thoughts in re: the weekend lately. As much as it pains me, I need to start at least paying attention, if not necessarily behaving. You know, CONSCIOUS misbehavior. MINDFUL debauchery. What prompted this, you ask?
Alrighty . . . the little empty spots on my Nutrition Tracker and my Other Goals clicky boxes are making me sad. They represent a long string of ďlost weekends.Ē So this weekend ( . . . oh, do I REALLY dare say this?? . . . .), Iím going to track my calories, and track my water, and so forth.
Now, letís not get crazy, here. Iím not giving up beer (if I do, you can just kill me please), or giving up eating reasonable amounts of stuff I wouldnít eat Monday through Friday, or making too much of a concerted effort to stay in my calorie range. Iím just saying Iím going to track it, and let the cards fall where they may.
(Pssst. . . the secret is that once I start tracking it, Iíll start wanting to control it like I do every other day, so really Iím faking myself into better weekend behavior . . . but donít tell me that, itíll ruin it.)
Did you hear something? Sounded like someone was whispering there for a minute. Hmm . . . weird. Anyhoo, have a wonderful, wonderful weekend everyone!
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
I've been perusing a lot of Spark Pages and blog entries lately (read: obsessively stalking strangers). What a freaking bunch of overachievers you all are!
Okay, I kid, I kid, at least about the "freaking" part. But seriously, wowza. Dozens or even hundreds of reps/sit-ups/push ups, triathlons, hundreds of pounds lost, marathons, sticking to a mere 1200 calories a day?? If I manage to eat only 1200 calories a day, it's because I either a) was gravely ill, or b) slept until 2 pm, or c) both a and b.
I need a giant kick in the, er . . . gluteus maximus. I just cannot seem to get over my 5 million excuses to avoid regular cardio. It's not that I hate it, or even dislike it. I like the actual physical activity, but I just can't seem to make it a priority. Strength training I can mostly manage. Cardio, not so much.
So what are my excuses? . . . Eh, who cares? The same excuses as everyone else. I Just. Need. To do it. And get over all the nonsense. I realized that others with much more weight to lose, with physical limitations, with many more responsibilities, and a lot more chaos in life, are still kicking the shazaam out of some calories every week, or even every day.
Usually I go for the almost-cheating method of going on a 2, 3, maybe 4 hour hike one day on the weekend, and getting all my cardio minutes/calories burned in one shot. I like this method. A lot. However, this is hard to do sometimes, especially when it's freezing/snowing/wintering outside. If I can't do that, I tend to just not do anything other than strength training and yoga. And this, my friend, is just not working for me.
I used to run . . . well, jog. Well . . . mostly walk, but also jog. Anyway, I did this when I wasn't working, and it was summer. It was glorious (I mean, it was glorious when I was done, and my face returned to it's usual color), and I felt great about it - then my employer sent me to a new project in a neighboring state, and suddenly time was no longer a luxury I possessed. So much for my running habit. I want it back, but it's going to have to be in a different form, and so far I'm stumped.
I have a yoga class tonight. That's one hour (plus) a week that I JUST SHOW UP, and the rest happens on its own. So I'm brainstorming ways I can apply this concept in other ways . . .
. . . . . . yep, still working on it.
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