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Ghosts Appear and Fade Away

Monday, June 27, 2011

Ah, and here is the week where I lose 1/3 of what I gained last week.

Good, yes?

So why is it so often that the highs are no so high, but the lows can be devastating?

We are nuts here, many of us, overthinking the scale, cramming as much control into our days as possible, oh so carefully balancing work, home, family, life and calorie cycling as well. Oops, can't have carbs from a yellow vegetable because it's 9 AM on a Monday. Oh, no!

Breaches in our routines throw us for considerably larger loops than they should. And we worship and track and pay attention to the scale in a manner that is not good for us. It occupies a position of far more importance than it should.

Now, I am not knocking calorie cyclers. If that works for you, hey, have at it. And I am well aware that, for many diabetics, life is kinda like that whether you want it to be, or not. I am also not saying to pitch your scale out the window, despite how tempting that may seem. It is a useful tool. IF YOU LOOK AT IT ONCE PER WEEK.

After that, though, really, what are you expecting to see? I ate a grape yesterday, let's see what happened? Cripes, you ate a damned grape! It was, what, 2 calories? I got news for you. The scale will only tell you one of three things:

1) you lost weight. Was it because of the grape? No, it was because of other good choices, and from working out.
2) you gained weight. Was it because of the grape? No, it was because of other choices, and they may even have been good ones but there may be something else at work, like water retention or the workout wasn't as good as you thought it was or the diet gods are laughing at you this week.
3) you stayed the same. Was it because of the grape? Helfino.

Substitute grape for Pasta Alla Puttanesca or spelt or pizza or birthday cake or whatever and you get thousands of inner conversations that so many of us have as we step on the scale.

I refuse to have those internal conversations anymore. I am sick of them.

I pledge to you, from now on - I will step on the scale on Monday morning ONLY. And I will lose, or I will gain, or I will stay the same. And the world will not break away from orbit and spin off its axis and life as we know it will not end because I wasn't insane for every single minute of every single day. This does not mean that I stop tracking, or I stop working out, or I stop eating well or that I stop caring. No.

It means that I am going to do my level best to stop obsessing.

It's just overkill.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KUNGFOOD 7/4/2011 11:47AM

    Those crazy neurotic conversations. Gaaaah! Love your sense of humor.

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JENJENBUG 6/29/2011 3:09PM


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GRACEFULIFE 6/29/2011 12:02PM

    Daily weighing using a smoothing algorithm actually got me OUT of scale weight obsession.

It's nearly as bad to make adjustments based on a weekly weight than a daily weight. Consider that we are advised to lose not more than 2 pounds per week, typically more like 1 pound or a half pound per week approaching goal weight. Further consider that due to water intake, salt balance, liver and muscle glycogen levels and other factors, daily weight can vary by 3-4 pounds. And that is plus or minus from true weight, so it's entirely possible to vary 6-8 pounds within the space of 3-4 days without actually losing or gaining anything at all. So weekly weigh-ins could change 6-8 pounds over a week without gaining or losing at all, which clearly swamps the 1-2 lb/wk suggested loss rate. I posit this would cause most on this site to panic or make an adjustment. Sure, panicking once a week is better than panicking every day.

Better still, though, to train yourself not to panic (to which you alluded). This is what daily weighing+smoothing has done for me and others. It doesn't take more than a couple months to begin to regard your daily weight as data, clues to one's actual weight, rather than directly indicating one's actual weight. Your smoothed weight is considered to be more indicative of your actual weight, and since it only swings 10% toward a daily weight measurement (in the physicsdiet algorithm) from the current smoothed weight, you only get 10% of the daily variation - not really enough to cause panic.

I personally reject any argument in this arena for one size fits all solutions, whether it is for a workout regime, dietary makeup, frequency of weighing, you name it.

Additionally, in truth the scale does not really represent the actual goal for most people anyway. Who cares what number is on the scale? Are you functional beyond your daily life, and preferably well into anything you like to do occasionally for fun or adventure? How do you look in the mirror? How do you look naked to your significant other(s)? From this standpoint the scale is just a progress indicator anyway. I've seen women on here obsess over gaining 8 pounds after starting a weight training program - but guess what, they have usually lost size when they measure indicating they gained all of that plus more in muscle and lost more in fat than they gained in muscle. An excellent result to be sure - but one that runs epically counter to the idea that scale weight is the ultimate goal.

Daily weighing is not necessarily an obsessive behavior, just as much as tracking all one's intake is not necessarily an obsessive behavior. It's the same with almost any other behavior; I've seen many people on here obsessed with cardio. Whether or not either is obsessive, over the top, or damaging depends entirely on how one approaches it. The line between being results-oriented and being obsessive can be thin at times. I think the actual central message of the Spark approach with its emphasis on moderation and life integration, while still implementing daily intake tracking and regular weighing, is trying to teach people to successfully walk that line.

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CARRIE1948 6/28/2011 3:15PM

    I think the real trick is to do what works for you. I weigh myself every day. Not to obsess about minute changes, but to monitor trends. I also track percentages of fat and water so I can see if weight changes are something to be concerned about.

If daily tracking doesn't work for you, so be it. That doesn't mean it isn't helpful to others. I think what matters is that we find the set of skills and tools that keep us focused on what we want to accomplish.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/28/2011 10:48AM

    You have to find what works for you.

What works for me is daily weighing, and putting it into I like numbers. I like the accountability. I like the fine-grain monitoring of the trend weight. And I can see trends sooner (and do something about them sooner) than if I wait a whole week. Since I'm bouncing around close to goal I need the feedback on the trend line to help me tweak my intake. It works for me.

Hang in there.

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PICKIE98 6/27/2011 7:14PM

    Daily scales are for fish!!

Some people HAVE to be obsessed about SOMETHING,, this is just another choice..
When you mentioned grape calories, I, as a diabetic, was thinking, that is a carb, sugar,, a treat.. but did not think about the calories,,
see how it is different for all of us?

If we eat healthy things in moderation, move, and drink water, stay positive, we will lose and feel better eventually!! Period, amen, finis, the end!!! Thanks for pointing this out for us!!

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KASEYCOFF 6/27/2011 6:15PM

    I'm reading along and I think - two calories? A leetle teeny tiny grape is TWO CALORIES?!? Argh. The mindset is so easy to slip into, lol... And you're right: I weigh once a week - or not at all.

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MADERINERUE 6/27/2011 5:30PM

    I don't even own a scale, which is its own sort of pathology...

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TEMPEST272002 6/27/2011 2:00PM

    Woot! Here's to not obsessing over the scale! There are so many other - more accurate, less crazy-making - ways to track progress.

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MARCHMAID 6/27/2011 1:54PM

    Amen amen I say unto you. LOL

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KSGROTHE 6/27/2011 1:22PM

    Wow! I had forgotten about that song! Great choice for your blog subject!

It's a great idea to stop obsessing! After all, it is just "oooooverkilllllll". emoticon emoticon

- Karen

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BABAJEAN 6/27/2011 12:09PM

    This is exactly what I have been thinking lately - no more daily scale - I don't even track food anymore - It seems it puts too much emphasis on my every move - my every thought of failure and success - I have decided to stop the stress of obseessing and simply do the best I can - Your post was great !

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MS.ELENI 6/27/2011 10:51AM

    You hit the nail on the head again. I am still struggling but I know why. I also hate obsessing about food and it is so easy to do. Thanks for sharing your great comments.

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TERRIREDUX 6/27/2011 9:58AM

    Love this! Excellent take on the battle with the scale vs the battle in our heads. (plus, I now have "that song" in my head!) emoticon

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As Sure as the Sun Will Shine

Monday, June 20, 2011

By all rights, I should be angry.

I should be screaming and swearing at my betraying body that has, in one week, gained back the two back to back hard-fought losses of the prior two weeks. You know, the first losses in God knows how long?

Yeah, I should be PO'd.

And it's weird, but I'm not.

It is PMS time (which explains much of the gain, I suppose), and I should be RAILING.

I am also waiting to hear on two possible jobs. For people who told me last week that I'd hear by the end of that week. And the previous week they had made that promise about the prior week. Yeah, I should be LIVID.

But I'm strangely not.

Perhaps I've hit the zen sweet spot. I don't know.

I do know that getting angry and laying blame hasn't done a damned bit of good. All that's gotten me is tired. Not thinner, not faster, not a job. Just tired.

Now, this is not gonna be a rah-rah blog about how adversity is good for us, yadda yadda yadda.

Truth be told, adversity STINKS. Even if you want to do difficult things, there just comes a point where you wanna cry Uncle, where the 27+ miles walked and the 1600 - 1800 calorie diet followed last week shoulda done SOMETHING. It can be hard to make that effort and to feel that it is all for naught -- but the truth is, it was not for nothing.

Alas, though, it does not always come across on the scale. What is most maddening is the fact that putting it on is EASY. It does not take much to slip. It is, you are often like the little Dutch boy, with his finger in the dike, trying to hold back the river and finding it nigh well impossible.

But taking it off is HARD. Don't EVER let ANYONE tell you that this is easy. The first few steps can, actually, feel easy. But the long haul, the years, the miles, the stacked up plates full of good food choices that stretch from here to the moon?

Those are difficult.

This journey takes a LOT. Don't ever let anyone tell you this is a walk in the park, even if you're walking in the park when they tell you that.

You are the strongest people I know.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MS.ELENI 6/25/2011 10:33PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    This is such an honest and true and inspiring blog. Thank you. I needed to read this today.

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TEMPEST272002 6/20/2011 5:17PM

    I can totally relate to pretty much everything you wrote. Change is hard. Making big changes is harder. It is so not fair that 3 weeks of focused effort can be undone with one week of careless eating. Glad you've made it to the zen-spot of acceptence (for today anyhow, lol). Those 2lbs are water weight. Weighing yourself PMS week is nothing but pure silliness & you should consider never doing it again.

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HOTRODSANDY 6/20/2011 11:18AM

Sorry about the frustrating weigh in. No amount of time spent eating right and exercising is for naught, it just may take it's sweet time to appear on the scale.

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SWEETZMIX 6/20/2011 11:04AM

I know you can. You know you can. And yeah it is hard, but we are warriors! Keep up the fight!

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STRINGS58 6/20/2011 11:03AM

    The scale isn't the only method of measuring progress -- I agree that it is hard, but not agonizing is an important lesson! I'm making a shift, but I know that I'm going to address habits that contribute to overeating. I'm feeling pretty good that something has to get reflected physically for making that kind of a change.

Stick in there for your health. keep finding the success path. This journey is not simple!

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KSGROTHE 6/20/2011 11:01AM


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WINACHST 6/20/2011 10:55AM

    Just remember the scale is only a tool and does not tell the whole story. I agree that taking it off is hard especially since we live in a time when we want and see immediate results in so many things. Just like when I send this comment, I expect to see it within seconds after hitting the post comment button.

Best wishes to you
~Nancy emoticon

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/20/2011 9:48AM

    Simple, yes.

Easy? No.

100% agreement, here.


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GRSMITH80 6/20/2011 8:59AM

    Great blog and all too true! It may seem like it's all so simple to look at living healthier..... UNTIL you have to DO IT! It can be a real challenge to keep working towards your goals and not go running back to a bag of cookies, chips or whatever your old vice was, especially when you have a setback in your progress. CONGRATS to you on pushing forward and not getting all worked up over one minor setback! You can do this! emoticon

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NANCYBOAT 6/20/2011 8:59AM


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I Have a History of Taking Off My Shirt

Monday, June 13, 2011

Ha, you thought, perhaps, that the clothing rant was over!

Oh, no, mes amis. It is far from over.

Let us, ahem, discuss what is, erm, under the shirt. And the pants.

I am speaking, of course, of our skivvies. How many of us walk around all day and are uncomfortable?

Now, I am well aware that constructing a bra is, in many ways, a job for the Army Corps of Engineers. It is a complex system of angles, pads, hooks, straps, cups and, perhaps, a bit of anti-gravity. There are different types, too, for enhancement or minimizing or whatever. It's a wonder any of 'em are relatively inexpensive, truth be told.

But why, oh why, is it that finding the right fit is so dang complicated? It is a set of measurements. And it is actually more measurement-driven than any other piece of women's clothing. It should be EASY to get a bra that fits.

I am a 36C. This morning, when I measured myself, my bust was 39.25" and my band was 35.5". According to Macy's
I am a 36C, whether you go with a 35 or a 36 for my band size. Well, all righty then!

Except that I gap out on the sides, unless I am wearing a sports bra.


It is supposed to actually fit me! So -- here's a wacky idea -- unless it's some sort of a hotsy-totsy ooh la la type of bra, couldya people make it with higher sides? Otherwise, it looks like I am stuffing into something that does not fit.


And now to head southward.


I have found that Fruit of the Loom fit. Hanes Her Way, for me, do not. Same size (6 these days). Really, this should not be a radical difference. Yet it is! For, while I can get both types on me, the latter manufacturer's product, ahem, has a lovely tendency to go to places where it is not supposed to go.

My only advice is -- and you can't try these on in a store, so you end up buyin' 'em, is to try on, wear for a day, and see how often (if at all) you have to tug. Life is too short to be tugging. Know what I'm sayin'?

By the way, this can be a male issue as well, according to my husband.

Finally, something that more people will see -- shorts. How many people here wear shorts that continually ride up if you walk for more than, I dunno, a block?

My husband even has this happen to him, and he is a good 30 lbs. lighter than I am, and with decent legs (there's your ooh la la right there) without thigh rubbing. So why is he getting ride up?

My request to shorts makers - I dunno, but FIND A WAY. Perhaps the bottom part of each leg could be cuffed with a very slight weight in it? Of course longer shorts, like the kind that hit at the knee or so, have much less of this problem. But those are no good when it's 90 out. I would like to be able to wear shorts in skeery hot weather without, among the other things I deal with in life, also have to spend my time figuring out how I am going to, surrepitiously, adjust 'em. Over and over and over again.

I swear we will have World Peace a lot faster if all underwear issues could get resolved.

So, to all undergarment manufacturers out there -- pun intended, of course -- GET CRACKIN'!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PICKIE98 7/11/2011 5:29PM

    A-oh! Message in a Bottle.. another song stuck in my head!!!

I do not have shorts ride up, but that Rusty butt-crack image is not pretty,, I have my fruity-tooty Loomers on and they never ride up if I buy the correct size..
I wear JMS bras,, their sizing for me is dead-on.. but I am so glad I do not have what I have heard some people call back boobs??? Is that it, where the foundation garment pushes everything until it squeezes out onto the back?? Mine is my underarms,, too much going on there,,

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NUMD97 7/9/2011 8:22PM

    Thanks for the chuckle.

And of course you are, indeed, correct. Why clothing is not standard across manufacturers, I dunno, is anyone's guess. It's really not rocket science, but then again here we are. =sigh=

Good luck as you soldier on,


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SHEL1181 7/4/2011 10:39PM

    Bra's suck!!! I found a good one but it broke in a couple months!!!! How does that happen. Most of the one's that fit don't go up high enough on the side and that is such an unattractive look. I think I look decent and then I see that side fat pushing up and over the bra and just want to take it off and put my sports bra on. So frustrating! Loved your blog!!!

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JOPAPGH 7/4/2011 7:16PM

    Just stopped by for the song reference. (love those guys)

My shorts don't ride up, and I'm not much help in the bra dept.

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RONOSOF 7/4/2011 10:40AM

    so no one caught the musical reference? or I'm the only one with the song stuck in my head;)

have a tendency to wear my mind on my sleeve
"I have a history of taking off my shirt"

It's been one week since you looked at me
Threw your arms in the air
and said "You're crazy"
Five days since you tackled me
I've still got the rug burns on both my knees
It's been three days since the afternoon
You realized it's not my fault
not a moment too soon
Yesterday you'd forgiven me
And now I sit back and wait til you say you're sorry

Chickity China the Chinese chicken...
ok I'll stop.

Cheers, Mary

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CAROLISCIOUS 6/15/2011 8:38PM

    Preach it sista!

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FRECKS96 6/14/2011 6:42AM

    Amen! I hate bra shopping. I generally end up special ordering from an online company. Expensive but generally worth it.

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KSGROTHE 6/14/2011 3:02AM

    You CRACK me up! emoticon

- Karen

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    Mmmmm. I remember the days when women used to go braless and it was acceptable. Imagine? Of course those were the days when I was skinny ad there was nothing to put in a bra. And getting dressed up meant wearing a cami so the outerwear kinda slipped more gracefully. I have a feeling no matter how much weight I lose the braless days are history. And maybe that is a good thing for the world.

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MADERINERUE 6/13/2011 9:03PM

    I loved this blog.

When I was nursing (sorry if this is TMI) I was, like, a 36 E or something mammotastic like that. I went to a specialty store that was known for its mastectomy bras and they fitted me (and the owner's demented mother felt me up to make sure the girls were where they should be...yeah, that was interesting). I ordered a couple of hard-core nursing bras from them and my life improved significantly. Now I'm a normal 34 D and I absolutely lovelovelove the Spanx Bra-llelujah. They are stupid-expensive (about $60 each) but I buy three, rotate them regularly, and they last for 2-3 years each (longer for the black one, which I wear less frequently, and it's still going strong at 4+ years). No back fat rolls. No strangulation. Just a nice, gentle hug. I love them.

As far as panties are concerned, I'm a big fan of Gap Body. They have decent sales several times a year. I wear an 8 or a 10 on the bottom, but I get a size large. No creepy-crawly nonsense. And if you go for the lacy boy-shorts, no panty lines, either, if that is ever an issue for you.

Just my two cents. Love the BN Ladies, by the way.

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ARLENE_MOVES 6/13/2011 7:18PM

    Interesting blog. Just this morning I told myself I needed to go out and buy at least 1 till I reached my goal. Right now, I'm really uncomfortable because it is too big... emoticon

Now, not looking forward to shopping at all cause I don't want to spend a bunch right now. Maybe I'llgo for the sports bar. I donno... emoticon emoticon

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TEMPEST272002 6/13/2011 5:53PM

    You have so many great observations... maybe you should cnsider a 2nd career as a clothes designer!

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ALLISON_R36 6/13/2011 12:49PM

    Awesome blog! Stupid shorts...

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/13/2011 12:16PM

    1) Bras.
You can go to the Intimacy store at Copley Place (857.277.7887). I went to one in San Diego when I hit goal in January of 2009 while they were having specials on bra fittings and they spent a long time trying to fit the girls into something. More info here: Their bras are hideously expensive. I recommend noting down the brand, model, and size and trying to find the same thing online somewhere else.

They might not have such issues with your girls since you got the skin removed. Mine are "as is," after losing around 180 lbs.

In the end they put me in something pretty similar to what I wear usually and buy at Wal-Mart:

2) Underwear.
I think I just buy Hanes for Her briefs. I think they might be high cut, but I'm not sure. I'm probably due for a downsize. If your skivvies are riding up you could try going up a size and see how that feels.

3) Shorts.
When I was buying from their catalog had these awesome stretch compression shorts with a lightweight shell around the sides that disguised the lycra. The lycra kept them from riding up. Looks like they still have them:

Other manufacturers probably have something similar but I rarely wear shorts except board shorts (when I'm kayaking, which I'm not this season) so I don't know what options like that there are.

Let us know how it goes!

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LADYJAY25 6/13/2011 11:39AM

    Love the blog! LOL I totally agree with the bra thing! I am a 44D and the larger womens bras just suck! I've tried so many diffrent brands. Currently i have a few from Cacique (Lane Bryants lingurie dept) But I know the sucky bra fits happen to women of all sizes. My cousin is a size 2 maybe!, and she has issues finding good bras too!

So... Hopefully the fashion industry will listen.

On a side not to the panty thing. There was a spotlight on the Dr. Oz show where he talked about VANITY SIZING. Look it up. Since the 50s a size 12 has grown 8 inches!!! There is no government regulations when it comes to sizes in the US. So manufacturers are marking larger sizes smaller so that women will feel better about their size and buy more...

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KABOOPER 6/13/2011 11:08AM

    Your best bet is to go to a Victoria Secrets OR there are companies I have heard of that will measure and FIT you for YOU!And they do make bras with higher sides, but they are more pricey than your everyday run of the mill Target and Sears type bras.
I love victoria secrets they have ones that cover well and no gaps, you just have to be willing to work with the sales people and let them look at you in your skivies.

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IFDEEVARUNS2 6/13/2011 11:02AM

    Thanks for the laugh this morning!

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CYBERQT 6/13/2011 10:56AM

    I bought a new bra this weekend. Its a 7 way biofit bra at Victoria Secret. A bit pricy (65$) but! You can wear it 7 ways with black or clear straps. I'm a 38DD and I can even wear it strapless! It is amazing and the sides aren't tiny . I love it! I am going to buy another one next month in another color.

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PONYFARMER 6/13/2011 10:20AM

    Oh I hear you sister! It is so annoying and needs to have a fix and soon. Both of them! I have the exact same issues.

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The Right Allocations

Monday, June 06, 2011

Okay, so it's an odd video. Anyway, ahem.

Dear clothing manufacturers:

You stink.

Well, maybe not ALL of you, but, really. You've had a long time of seeing the United States get heavier and heavier, yet you still don't get our bodies. You don't get our tastes or our needs. You.Do.Not.Get.It.

Now, I am well aware that money talks in this area, and that if I spend some serious cabbage, I can get tailored clothing and avoid these problems. But, let's face it. Most of us are not made of money. And we might spend for a few pieces but, really, we need more than a piece or two in order to actually get through our days and not be doing laundry (or dry cleaning) every flippin' day.

But I digress.

You continue to stink.

Consider these issues.
* For shirts, blazers and blouses, yes, you make larger sizes. Cool! But, so often, you fail to increase the size of the arm holes. For larger women, or former larger women, the triceps are often big. Hell, that's true for older women as well. Yet here I am, wearing 14s, and I swear the arm holes are close in size to what they were when I was wearing 10s and when I was wearing 20s.
* Large women are not all large in the same way. In order to avoid some of the issues here, I propose a belly measurement for your clothes, along with bust, waist and (sometimes) hip. Maybe even size these clothes differently. A size 14WB could be a bit bigger around the midsection. I cannot say how many times blazers and whatnot fit at the shoulders but then there was an epic fail by the belly.
* Pockets! Cripes, do you not realize that we carry keys, change, a smidge of makeup and a hanky or tissues? AND WE DON'T WANT TO BE CARRYING A PURSE WITH US 24/7. How hard is it to get that? Running shorts never seem to have pockets, except for one miniscule one that -- maybe -- will hold one key. Well, guess what? I have more than one key. Yeah, I drive a car AND don't live in it. Yeah, I am awesome that way.
* On the subject of arm holes, what about calf sizing for boots? I am a size 11 in shoes. I have been this size for many years and while I weighed all sorts of amounts. But it's tough to find boots that fit over the calf. First I was heavy there. Now, I'm muscular there. And the boots STILL don't fit. I know that these exist, but they often have to be paid extra for (of course, how silly of me - pay and pay, right?). C'mon. It's a size 11. Seriously, 10s and 11s and up, these are way at the end of the curve. Dontcha think the calf size would be a bit larger, too?
* Blue jeans. Yanno that belly measurement I mentioned above? Yeah. That might help in this area.
* Elastic waists. Can't you hide them better, or at least put belt loops on so that we can do that? These days, I don't wear 'em so much, but I have plenty of friends who do. And they'd prefer to not be telling the world that they're wearing elastic waistbands. Can ya cut 'em just a tiny bit of slack in that area?

And, last but not least - Vanity Sizing. Man oh man I hate this. Just use measurements, all right? And, hell, use both English and Metric while you're at it. My waist, this morning (I measured it and all) is 35 3/4". My belly is 40". My hips are 43". What size pants am I wearing? 14.

Yeah, that's got a basis in reality.


Anyway, that's today's beef. And, folks, feel free to add yours. Or, if you have a fave designer, talk about 'em! Tell the world how wonderful some company is. I've found Columbia Sportswear to be good for workout stuff (e. g. actual pockets that work), and Dockers to be decent for semi-dressy pants. Talbots isn't bad, either, but I fit into them now (I didn't used to). Plus they can run pricey, particularly for everyday stuff.

Who's out there who DOESN'T stink? Let everyone know. Shout it from the rooftops. I wanna buy my short skirt and my long jacket from SOMEONE.

Thank you.

Love, jespah

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SWEETZMIX 6/8/2011 1:15PM

    hmm I have the calf issue. I am a size 7 or 7.5 in shoes. Have been for years and doesn't matter how big or small I am, it's hard to find boots to fit over my calf too & I LOVE THEM! And I am actually petite, so finding pants I wish were easier. Sometimes the petite is still too long if I wear flats depending on the brand lol But at the end of the day, we work with what we got!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 6/7/2011 10:47AM

    Can I add one from the other end of the spectrum?

Not everyone who is in a smaller size (8-10-12 depending on the decade and manufacturer) has petite-length arms and legs. Everything ending up as capris or 3/4 sleeves does get old, especially as autumn rolls around. LOL My ankles and wrists might like some coverage, now and then!

I used to really like for both their clothes and their workout gear. I kind of miss them. For swimsuits you couldn't beat the polyester chlorine-proof ones at They even had a group order option if you wanted to save money by getting together all your water aerobics buddies.

Honestly though I figure my best revenge against clothing manufacturers is to not buy from them. My favorite boutique is Salvation Army. LOL

Comment edited on: 6/7/2011 10:48:27 AM

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    I read someplace that vanity sizes tend to run more expensive than the old sized garments. Don't they think we know?

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CAROLISCIOUS 6/6/2011 8:13PM

    Even though I am a size 6...down from a 14. I still have to be careful when I purchase anything with sleeves. I have BIG upper arms...not muscular (although God knows I have tried) just BIG.

Bigger sleeves please!

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KSGROTHE 6/6/2011 5:13PM

    That was a funny video! I especially liked the woman at the end who made the comment about one-hit wonders (which I know Cake is not).

I can relate to much of what you said here. I am still shopping plus sizes (16 mostly), and I hate it. There is not really a good selection in the plus section of traditional department stores, and the specialty stores are expensive and not always my taste either. I also *hate* that the plus-size catalogs and stores usually use "traditional" (i.e., skinny) models. How am I supposed to know if an article of clothing that looks great on a skinny model is going to look OK in the plus size? I have shopped just a little at Torrid, which caters to younger women and teens generally, but I appreciated that they use actual plus-size models in their advertising and on their website. Unfortunately, I have still not figured out their sizing, which goes from 1 - 4. They also seem to assume that most plus size women have big busts. I did not fill many of the shirts I tried on very well even when it fit my stomach and shoulders OK. Oh, and I totally agree on the pockets! I must have pockets! (But not in my shirts.)

OK, I think I've ranted enough in my comment here. Thanks for bringing up such an important topic. emoticon

- Karen

Comment edited on: 6/6/2011 5:15:28 PM

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DMPRIDER 6/6/2011 12:18PM

    Good blog! I can especially relate to shirts and jackets that fit in the shoulders but not around the waist/hips. This is a particular problem for me because I am short so the proportions are often wrong which increases the problem - like I'm trying to fit what should fall at the waist around my hips.

And shopping for petites doesn't always solve the problem. Some manufacturers seem to assume that if you are short you are also small all over. I wish that was the case!

One big problem I have is that I have...ahem...a "generous" bust. So finding button-down blouses of any kind that lay nicely across the chest is almost impossible. When I was thinner, when I was heavier, and now I'm in between, it's still the same. The shirt will gap between buttons over the bustline if I dare to move my arms at all. So rather than flash glimpses of my bra at people, I used to safety pin my shirts there. What a PITA. Yes, I can buy a bigger size, but then it looks like I'm wearing a button-down sack. Not so flattering. Now, I only buy pullover shirts - Ts, polo shirts or Henleys. One of my biggest weight-loss goals is to be able to wear a Hawaiian shirt and have the buttons lay flat!

For what its worth, I like Land's End clothing. The materials are nice and they have good sizing charts with measurements in their catalogs and on their website. They also offer certain items in more than one "fit" or cut ie, body-hugging or a more generous cut. Their clothes are basic - nothing funky - but I like them. Their clothes are also generally well made and hold up well.

Edited to add: Yes, pockets please!!!

Comment edited on: 6/6/2011 11:04:08 PM

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DEELYNNE1 6/6/2011 11:56AM

    Right on, sistah! You had me at the arm holes. I have actually resorted to buying men's shirts because the arm holes were big enough to get my triceps into. All the women in my mom's family, overweight or under, have big upper arms and we can NEVER find women's sleeves that are big enough. The boot thing gets me too - I bought one pair of those way too expensive wide-calf boots and even THEY don't fit my calves. And my calves are a long way from my biggest part - I don't know how even women with skinny legs find boots that fit. All I ever buy anymore are ankle-height boots. And vanity sizing too ... well, I'd better stop before my rant in response becomes longer than your wonderful blog. Thank you for this! I SO agree with everything you said.

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MS.ELENI 6/6/2011 10:26AM

    You pretty much hit all my peeves.Only one I think you missed was blouses that fit until it falls below the waist.Then it is too tight. I hate trying to buy clothes. The arm holes is a good one.I had trouble when I only weighed 135# because I had biseps. I wish some very smart gal would start a clothing line that takes all you said in to account and at a reasonable price.She would be rich just because of volume she would be able to sell.Actually it could be a man as they have same problem if they are heavy. Great blog.One we can all relate to. emoticon

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MARCHMAID 6/6/2011 8:43AM

    I hear you. The apparent answer is to mold ourselves to fit the mold. sigh. emoticon

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Above the Clouds

Monday, May 30, 2011

So the experiment in eat more, weigh less, has been proven to be a miserable failure. But perhaps my setpoint has been, er, reset. This is very annoying.

I went from 1600 - 1800 calories/day to 1800 - 2000/day, following SP's recommendation, given my exercise regimen. And of course I went from 205 lbs. to 208.6, over the course of the 7 weeks I gave myself. I had exactly ONE week with a loss, and that was glorious loss of .4 lbs.

I didn't let up on the exercise, and rarely ate stuff I wouldn't normally eat (in there was my Dad's 80th birthday party and I had chocolate cake - as fit in with my plan!). I did my best to balance out carbs and not go insane with the salt (more food often means more salt).

But, in the end, I was doing better before I changed.

So now I'm back to eating 1600 - 1800/day.

As for how I am feeling about it, I am frustrated and less than pleased. It feels, a bit, like a wasted 7-week period. At least before, I was lower. We'll see what happens in the next 7 or so weeks.

What kills me is that this is NOT maintenance. I am NOT done. I am still only 5'6". I am still over 200 lbs. And I am still a 14, but those are (see how much fun this BS has been?) getting tighter. Gaah.

As for my attitude, well, tough. Sorry, but I'm not gonna be chipper about this. It stinks. No, I am not giving up. Don't worry about that.

But I'll be damned if I'm gonna say that this makes me happy, recommitted, or whatever. It doesn't. It stinks, and I am tired of it.

On to the next round and, hopefully, better news. I'm goin' swimming today.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REJ7777 6/5/2011 8:36AM

    Sparking is a continual adjustment and finding out what works and what doesn't. It does stink when something doesn't work. It's discouraging. What's important is that you learned something and that you're going back to what works. emoticon

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    Yeah it stinks and I did not think for a minute you would quit. 4 a healthy BMI made a lot of sense though I think I have read it is not a good idea to go under 1200 per day. I like seeing the numbers laid out like that. I keep remembering the pleasure you obviously experienced when you were losing every week. And the joy of those Picts when you got so gorgeous.even you had to admit it and that great shot of you in your Sox shirt that was so big on you it was funny. I hope that pleasure motivates you again. So much more fun than frustration. That really was you, remember?

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 5/31/2011 9:58AM

    Well, I guess that's why they call it an "experiment." As in, "we don't know what the result will be until it's over."

Seriously, though, 3.6 lbs gained in 7 weeks isn't bad. Your calories were pretty close to a maintenance level.

Let's do the math by hand, since you weren't logging stuff over at Physics Diet.

((3 500 x 3.6) / 7) / 7 = 257 You were eating approximately 257 calories per day over what it would take to maintain.

So to maintain weight at your current activity level your calorie range is probably around 1543-1743.

To lose approximately 1 lb per week you would need to drop that down to 1043-1243 calories.

According to the math, anyway. Swimming is a good idea because it is a new, different activity and thus likely to help increase your calorie burn. I like to alternate my activities (when I can - I'm going through my own frustrations at the moment, given this long slow shoulder rehab process.)

So you could run/swim M-W-F and strength train T-Th-Weekend. Or something like that. And when I say "strength training" I mean lifting heavy, as suggested in "New Rules for Lifting."

Comment edited on: 5/31/2011 10:09:38 AM

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KSGROTHE 5/30/2011 10:53PM

    Well, your experiment didn't work out, but you're one step closer to figuring out what *does* work for you. We all have to find our own program, our own path to a healthy lifestyle. Hang in there. emoticon

- Karen

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MS.ELENI 5/30/2011 5:40PM

    I agree it stinks big time. Now enjoy your swim

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MARCHMAID 5/30/2011 4:28PM

    Tired here, too, but am seeing this as a "for crying out loud, Lady!" kind of thing:

For crying out loud, I've been moaning about my weight off and on for years. Give up or get if off is now my operative motto. Just for today---like an alcoholic. Darn it all!

Let's hang together and do this thing this summer!

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ARLENE_MOVES 5/30/2011 12:47PM

    Very frustrating. I'm with you -- the whole month of May, lost the same pound. Not 7 weeks but still just as frustrating. Hope you get past it. sorry. emoticon

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STRINGS58 5/30/2011 11:35AM

    Wow! this is pretty frustrating. I'm not sure what to tell you. Some would shock the system with no carbs, or muscle confusion or something, but I'm not a fan of being too harsh, because my recovery time undoes the progress! I hope you find the obstacle and move it out of your way. (insert emoticon guy pushing a large rock)

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GOGIRLOLDER 5/30/2011 11:33AM

    I love to swim too. I am staying off the scale, my clothes and people's comments let me know that the lifestyle is working. There is no end to is lifestyle. This was a good article. I am 5'6" too and am a 14 but just now are they fitting better.
ealthier_even_if_the_scale_doesnt_move Hang in there. emoticon

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FIT_TERI 5/30/2011 11:32AM

    How's no wonder that you're not feeling chipper. I'm sorry the experiment didn't work out for you. I hope you have better success with what you decide to do in this next phase. I'm glad you're hanging in there. Have fun swimming.
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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