JESPAH   166,052
100,000 or more SparkPoints
JESPAH's Recent Blog Entries

Smiled Like the Sun

Saturday, October 04, 2008

It's been a great day. The morning was spent kind of hanging around and then lunch out. I'm becoming less and less of a fan of Pizzeria Uno but at least they publish their nutritional information so I can account for what I eat. But, frankly, their food is WAY too salty. And I digress.

After lunch it was off to the Post Office to mail out a package of clothes to my Spark buddy Emma Smart. :)

Then of course (it's the weekend) food shopping. And, I saw my friend again. They were setting up some sort of extra seafood spot, probably to try to sell more of it. He looked a little put upon. I can understand that; the extra seafood spot was being set up near checkout so it was kind of this mess of ice and fish and whatnot. I saw the dude, he saw me and I just kind of mouthed, "I'll be back." That got a smile, which is always welcome.

After we were done food shopping and the food was put away, Mr. J and I went out and played frisbee. We played for a good half hour, longer than we have so far! I am getting better at aiming and also am more interested in running for the disc. Now I'm tired. It's a full enough day, plus I'm still kind of recovering from the week.

Tonight: baseball and tuna steaks. And dreams of flying discs. A good Saturday.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 10/6/2008 2:58PM

    Hot diggity -- yeah I was thinking the later than expected friending was kinda funny. :)

Goes to show ya that software means less than how we act and feel. Glad you like the new stuff.

I'll grab a box once I get one from some place like Amazon. May also have some warmer weather gear as it is getting rather chilly here. Going down to the 30s tonight.

And -- mitzvot! Awesome. :-D

Report Inappropriate Comment
EMMASMART 10/6/2008 1:11PM

    I just got the last box and yes. Because I don't have any suits at all. And green is my color.

By the way... Thank you thank you thank you. I was going to my sparkpage for a short cut to yours and shock of shocks I had not yet friended you. It's done now.. I am stoked about checking out and fitting in to the new to me duds. I think this is at minimum to mitvas, maybe more because you are encouraging me to keep up.


Report Inappropriate Comment
JESPAH 10/5/2008 10:28AM

    Em -- I have 2 lucky interview suits -- one is dark green (pantsuit), the other is green tweed (long skirt). Want 'em?

Report Inappropriate Comment
EMMASMART 10/5/2008 9:51AM

    Oh boy oh boy. I can't wait. Yahooooosey!


Report Inappropriate Comment
JESPAH 10/5/2008 9:28AM


Today I think we'll go to Cambridge. Weather looks okay -- Mexican food, and it comes with a built-in long walk from the bus stop to the restaurant, right through Harvard Square. :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
TELERIE 10/4/2008 7:29PM

    Sorry about double posting... SP was lagging a bit.

Comment edited on: 10/4/2008 7:27:23 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
TELERIE 10/4/2008 7:29PM

    *smile* Sounds like a great Saturday. I had a great day too! Went out on my run again and made it this time! emoticon
Have a wonderful Sunday!

Report Inappropriate Comment

When I Can See No Reason

Friday, October 03, 2008

Actually, I can see lots and lots of reasons.

This post is inspired by a fairly recent (late September) blog post from WolfKitty. In it, she talks about craving a pre-diet food and then, when she gets it thinking, "it's not all that".

I've been thinking about my old life, and being that I am nearly halfway through the weight loss portion of our program I think it's natural to look back and think about such things.

So, what was the old jes like? She had trouble with seat belts. Standard sized seating for things like stadiums and trains was too narrow. She couldn't get up the big hill at Plum Island without some major exertion and then shin pain for a subsequent few days.

She also ate papadum chips by the bag, great big handfuls of them. She ate poptarts for breakfast and deluded herself into thinking that that was all right because most of the rest of the day was healthy. She plunked down in front of a computer or TV every morning and night, and the rest of the day at work was spent with PCs and not people. She did go outside, but usually just to sit and read or write. Certainly not to exercise. She rarely helped with snow shoveling, lawn cutting, laundry or grocery carrying (although she did cook and washed dishes).

Her taste in food did cover spice but also a lot of fat, sugar and salt (she was never much of a fast food person). She hated every picture of herself. She saw her clothes getting more and more expensive and less and less like anything she ever wanted to wear. She selected clothes from catalogs based on size first and not on style, color or function. She had a lot of colds and general malaise. She was probably hurtling toward a life of sleep apnea. She also napped a lot, sometimes more than once in a day.

While that is the portrait of an overweight person, to be sure, it's also the portrait of another kind of person. A depressed person. Perhaps not clinical. But definitely someone on the low end of feelings, when it came to happiness, to energy and to self-esteem.

I suspect that major weight gain, such as I had and such as I am still shedding, is bound up tightly with depression no matter what else is happening. How, exactly, can such things happen? Sure a 10 lb. gain can happen. Or a 20 or a 50 lb. one. And these things take a while. But 200 lbs. overweight? And the last 40 or so -- I kid you not -- all happened within Calendar Year 2007, after a year ('06) when I had dropped 10 lbs.

Depression. Not a pretty word. But, I am sure, an accurate one. What does depression make you do, other than eat? Well, it makes you sleep. It depresses your immune system. It kills your self-esteem. It also, I believe, makes you crave certain foods. Sugar. Salt. Fat.

When the fog lifts, and the sun begins to shine again, a miracle takes place. Exercise gets interesting again. Fun creeps back into life. Self-esteem starts to rise. Naps become less appealing because they are not needed AND because you're too busy to waste your time that way. You treat yourself better. You have a spring in your step. You care more about your appearance. And food tastes differently.

Fat and salt and sugar still exist, but they have their places and those places are not front and center. You rediscover flavor. Jalapenos. Apples. Tuna steaks. Peanut butter. Snow peas. Dill. Sourdough bread. Yogurt. Olive Oil. Mint. Rice. Mangoes. Carrots. Cheeses.

And food is eaten differently, too. It stops being great handfuls that you need to cram in as quickly as possible. It stops being something that you'd better get out of the way, keep your fingers away from her teeth, folks, don't feed the animal, the animal is dangerous. It stops being that and returns to knives and forks and spoons. It returns to napkins and carefully arranged plates and bowls. It returns to conversations and thoughtful menu planning and shopping. It returns to ... civilization.

If anyone asks me, will I cheat, the answer is, why would I want to do that? It's not so much about the weight, not really, as it is about the feelings. Why should I make myself feel that old way, ever again? To what end does it enhance? What purpose does it serve?

If anyone asks me, when I am finished and on maintenance, will I return to my old ways, the answer is, what, are you insane? Sure, I may try some of those old foods every now and then, although I bet that for me, like it was for WolfKitty, they will be far less alluring, and my memories of them may be rosier than they ever really were. After all, no food is forbidden; you just have to watch portions. And yes, I may nap every now and then. There's nothing wrong with naps, so long as they don't dominate your days. There may be -- gasp! -- days I don't work out.

But to return to the old ways completely, and chuck all of this, it makes no sense. Life is meant to be lived, not to be endured. Food is meant to be enjoyed, not tossed behind your teeth as fast as possible to squash the screaming stomach beast. Beautiful days are meant for walks or runs or frisbee or maybe just hanging around but enjoying them rather than sleeping through them and making them slide past as quickly as possible.

I am no longer swimming in a circle. I am swimming forward. I am walking forward. I am jogging forward. I am running forward. I am flying forward.

I'm going to break the light-speed barrier. And if I do, I'll tell you yesterday. Thanks for reading.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 10/4/2008 6:16PM

    Thank you. You are all very kind.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MOEDANCING 10/4/2008 1:42PM

    I'll tell you yesterday!


Report Inappropriate Comment
4MYMUSE 10/3/2008 6:54PM

    WOW, Jes!!! What AMAZING writing! You are an inspiration in sooooooooo many ways. Thank YOU!


Report Inappropriate Comment
JESPAH 10/3/2008 12:31PM

    Full speed ahead indeed.

We are all in this together -- grab the rope and pull -- I'm right behind you.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MISSROCKABILLY 10/3/2008 12:06PM

    This is a great blog. Thanks for sharing. Your insights into the links between depression and weight gain made me think "yeah, I can see that, that makes total sense". You are doing great, full speed ahead!

Report Inappropriate Comment
TUESDAYS 10/3/2008 11:58AM

    Yup, that's how mine happened. Well, except for the miracle part. In my case, I just pleaded with God so long that He pointed me in the direction of self-accountability with SP. Like you, I have new tools. I'm so grateful.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts. We are definitely in this together... emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
JESPAH 10/3/2008 11:35AM

    The old you definitely deserves forgiveness. All of our old mes/yous do. :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
TELERIE 10/3/2008 11:13AM

    This blog is just awesome! I agree with you there are reasons linked with depression behind getting so overweight! And I admire you so much for changing yourself and meeting the old you. I'm working up the courage to get to know the new me and forgive the old me.
You'll break the light-speed barrier! I just know it.
emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

If I Could Fly Like Birds on High

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Warning: this video is very, very weird.

The song is because yesterday I saw my friend. It was for less than a minute as he was busy talking to some coworker but he did say hi and I did, too. It had been a while as I haven't been food shopping when he's been working. A small thing, but, hey, I'll take all the smiles I can get. In the interests of weird karma, while I did see him in a totally random and unexpected way, I was also a total mess, as in uncombed hair, no makeup and an old shirt thrown over jeans. I need better flirting outfits! :)

Aside from my buddy being otherwise engaged -- e. g. no time to chat -- I, too, was on a mission. I was walking through the grocery in order to get to City Sports. Why there? Because I need tee shirts!

My current crop are HUGE on me. I bought a few (my husband went with me and he got a few for himself, too), including some that will fit now and others that will fit later. Today I did some tossing, and I'll do some more when the new stuff comes out of the wash. Today, actually, I decided, well, tomorrow it'll be October. There's just no way that it'll be tank top weather again until maybe May. Hence I took out the tanks from my work wardrobe, traded them for bigger or rattier tank tops in my tee shirt drawer and sent the rejects off to Goodwill. I also did this with short sleeved tops although I had fewer smaller versions of those. What I bought was all short sleeved stuff so I'll do the replacement trick with a few there, too.

I'm just tired of swimming in my old clothes. I'm no clothes horse by any means but this stuff is OLD. And it's falling apart, which is a good reason to replace it even if I wasn't losing weight like gangbusters. I'll probably just sleep in these tee shirts but it's still better if they aren't tents.

My smaller pants are getting long on me. These are 22s, pants that were impossible dreams not that long ago. Soon enough, they'll be fodder for Goodwill as I zoom past, on my way to double digit sizes that don't start with a 2. I am anticipating the day when I can call the large women's catalogs I get (Woman Within, Jessica London, that sort of thing) and ask them to take me off their mailing list as I won't be needing their stuff any more.

So long, ensign …

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 10/2/2008 5:42AM

    Oooh yeah -- toning is definitely happening but it is s...l...o...w sometimes.

Report Inappropriate Comment
EMMASMART 10/2/2008 1:20AM

    Hip hip hurray!

Report Inappropriate Comment
GRUMPYGRAMS 10/1/2008 10:33PM

    emoticon Yay for you, for getting rid of the old stuff. It's so much fun to ditch them, in favor of the smaller new clothes! Keep going girl. Just think of the new, pretty tank tops you'll be able to buy next summer to show off your new, toned, sexy arms!

Report Inappropriate Comment

A Boy Tries Hard to Be a Man

Monday, September 29, 2008

In case you don't know, a Bar Mitzvah is a coming of age ceremony. Essentially it means, you're thirteen, you're a man (or a woman, if you're a girl and it's a Bat Mitzvah). This is where I was all weekend -- doing the Bar Mitzvah thing with my older nephew and a hundred nearest and dearest.

I am tired. Man, I am beat. It's not just from all of the traveling and the change in the routine, but also because my husband and I went to the hotel gym on Saturday. We walked/jogged on treadmills, lifted weights, swam in the pool and marinated in the hot tub. It was delightful and we didn't feel like, oh God, what a chore, what a millstone around our necks, what a horrible obligation. Instead, it was fun, and we wanted to go back to the pool before leaving. The only two things stopping us were the lifeguard wasn't going to be there before we left plus we would've had an issue transporting that much volume in the way of wet swimsuits. :)

As for food, I did very well if I must say so myself. Now, I could've gone without the alli. Heck, I could've left it at home if I wanted to. But I didn't want to get out of that habit. So I took it at every meal and was careful. And yanno something? At the reception my plate was piled skyhigh, but it was roasted vegetables, salads and some salmon. I never felt deprived and always felt like I was a part of what was happening.

At the reception, we also danced a bit. My husband isn't too into dancing but we did the obligatory hora and I managed to get him off his feet to dance to the B52s' "Love Shack". It was a blast; my cousins were also dancing and we found out we had that in common as well. I wish we could see my cousins more often as they're fun people. It's hard when they're in New York or New Jersey and we're here in Massachusetts.

Oh yeah, and the icing on the Bar Mitzvah cake is that I lost 4 lbs. and my butt, heh, that measurement is FINALLY under 50" (49" if you please)!!! Therefore, I had, as we say, an awesome, excellent, kick-bun (rapidly disappearing bun) week/weekend!

A Bar Mitzvah is a regeneration. It's a transition. You move from childhood to adulthood. We don't use the New Testament but it does have a great quote that sums it all up, from 1 Corinthians 13:11: “When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.”

And that's what it is, you move from one phase to another one.

And so it is with weight loss, at least it is with a huge weight loss such as I'm going through. You move from one stage to another, and then another. The Bar Mitzvah, for me, was my first truly large goal. It was a definite place, an end point that I could neither change nor weasel out of nor negotiate away. And now it has come and gone, but I am still here, and I am still committed, and I am still losing and I am pushing through to the next phase.

What's the next phase? I suppose it's to finish up the calendar year and see how far I get. The end of the year is another hard stop, another date that cannot be moved no matter how much I desire it. I changed my ticker to 100 lbs. off as that is a huge milestone and is also my next alli goal. I'll probably, from now on, for the most part have the ticker follow the alli goals. How far do I really, honestly, heart to heart, it's just us talking, you and me, where do I feel I'm going to be at New Year's?

New Year's is a different proposition as it is a major massive milestone. After all, it's when I started all of this. I said to my husband, "My New Year's Resolution is to treat myself better.". And so I am walking that walk. Where will I be when resolution time rolls around again? Ah, gentle reader, that's a mystery.

Come along with me as we journey through this, the next phase. Sometimes I'll lead, sometimes you will. And when you do, I will follow.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 10/2/2008 5:42AM

    I thank you and A__ thanks you, too. :-D

Report Inappropriate Comment
TUESDAYS 10/1/2008 10:50PM

    Awesome! Congrats on such a great weekend. Although I'm late reading it, I have actually been looking forward to seeing how you did and to catching up with you. I think that every one of these milestone events that we successfully navigate gives us another lesson, don't you? As for your nephew, how wonderful to be celebrated in this way!

We're proud of you BOTH!


Report Inappropriate Comment
JESPAH 9/30/2008 6:11AM

    Ah, go for the blog on a blog thang. :)

And, thank you ... blush ... dangit why do all my friends live so far away???!?!?!?

Report Inappropriate Comment
TELERIE 9/29/2008 6:09PM

    Can I walk with you towards New Year and beyond, my friend?
You really KICK BUTT (can I say that here?)! I am so happy and proud for you and glad you had a great Bar Mitzvah weekend!
I love this blog! You (and your husband) totally ROCK! I'm glad my dearest got inspired by me and started to move with me - we're running together. It helps to be two.
I've also been thinking about those unmovable milestones like New Year looming in the not too distant future. I didn't make MY lifestyle until May but I also wonder where I am by New Year. Still on this path and still treating myself better every day, that's certain. Between you and me - I'll be going for getting close to my second 10%-lost by keeping up with my habit of daily exercise in the dark of winter.
Love your blog - sorry for blogging on yours! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment

I'm Just a-Wandering on the Face of this Earth

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Dang, I love that song.

Okay, oops, what was my point?

Two things.

One, I'll be away for the weeknd. The Bar Mitzvah weekend has arrived! I'm feeling good. I know I'm not super-thin but that's okay. After all, I still have over 100 lbs. to lose in order to hit healthy BMI. But I look infinitely better than I did and, more importantly, I feel a heckuva lot better.

I've also scoped out my food as well as I can, and essentially have a little list of what to eat. No spontanaeity, but, truly, that's not essentially with this. I do hope it doesn't pour down rain every single day but that is a very real possibility.

The other thing is -- and it's weird -- is I started a little bit of jogging. Just in the morning, just to get to the bus, just because I'm late. And I'm finding I feel perfectly fine. No shortness of breath. No shin splints. No knee pain. No extra fatigue beyond the usual.

I feel totally fine. I've been doing it for three days now and I certainly don't go very fast, but my legs are going up and there are moments when neither foot is on the ground and it's almost -- dare I say it? -- fun.

I've never, ever had a runner's high. And I realize I'm not getting one now. And I've always thought of myself as being the sort of person who would be bored silly with a lot of running. That actually hasn't changed much. But at the same time, I'm enjoying the feeling of going just a tiny bit faster. It's not much. As Jimmy Buffett sang in "Everybody's On the Run" (a song that isn't on Youtube, but SHOULD be):

First time I ran
was to the end of the block

Well, I haven't gotten that far yet. It's a long block. On Tuesday I ran 1/4 of it. On Wednesday I ran 1/3 of the block. And today I jogged for half of the block.

I don't know what the next few days will bring. I'll do my best to eat right and get in some exercise but, frankly, if it's not perfect I'm not going to beat myself up about it.

And when I get home, I'll resume my jogging ways. That block is going to be conquered. I will do it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JESPAH 9/29/2008 8:51AM


Gadzooks I am tired.

More later.

But I dropped 4 lbs. this week, even with the Bar Mitzvah (I was active and careful). Eep! I've shrunk by 92 lbs.!

Report Inappropriate Comment
TCEDEROTH 9/26/2008 2:36PM

    You go girl!!!

You are a continuous source of motivation and inspiration, and thank you for sharing it with all of us.

Report Inappropriate Comment
TELERIE 9/26/2008 2:30PM

    I admire you! You'll conquer the block! You make me happy! You can run!
You can do this. Have a great weekend and Bar Mitzvah.

Report Inappropriate Comment

    That is great. I walk but as fare as breaking into a jog, I am afraid my knees would really hurt. You are doing awesome. A little start and before you know it, you will be a runner. Go for it! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
TUESDAYS 9/26/2008 11:07AM

    Yesssssssssssssssssssss! You're doin' it!!
The weekend is here at last. Go and enjoy every single moment of it!
(That block'll be there... trust me. LOL!)
Proud of you, sistah!

Report Inappropriate Comment
OAKDALE3 9/26/2008 7:55AM

    You go girl!! That block doesn't stand a chance!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
JESPAH 9/26/2008 6:07AM

    Wellll this morning my left arch decided it was going to complain a bit. But so far, so good.

Off to vacation! Hugs to all! :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
TERRIEJO53 9/26/2008 2:46AM

    Congratulations on all the weight you've lost so far, Jespah ... congratulations on taking on the block ... congratulations on your wonderful attitude about this weekend ... congratulations on being YOU!

Report Inappropriate Comment
EMMASMART 9/26/2008 12:06AM

    I'm all impressed for me walking a block without dying and you are jogging. As usually I am right behind you.


Report Inappropriate Comment
LIQUEURLADY 9/25/2008 6:34PM

    omigoodness -- thanks for that blast from the past!

Have a great time this weekend! Mazel Tov! and Happy New Year a bit early, since I won't be around much Monday with the holiday -- may you be inscribed for a long and healthy and happy life!

Comment edited on: 9/25/2008 6:33:32 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment

First Page  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 Last Page