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10 questions on losing weight, part I

Friday, April 02, 2010

Somewhere, recently, I read that if we're having a problem, we need to ask ourselves 10 questions about it. I think it came in the tip of the day from www.peertrainer.com .

So, I've been stuck. For months. I thought I'd see if I could come up with 10 questions to see if it can help me become unstuck -- or refocused.

1. What do I get out of maintaining my weight?

The obvious answer is I get to eat more food. You can eat more (but not as much as you'd like) when you're maintaining vs losing. I get the comfort of knowing that I CAN maintain my weight. I don't have to think too much about what I'm doing -- I'm mostly (but not completely) on autopilot.

2. What will I get out of losing the last 10 pounds?

The satisfaction of knowing I have done -- which is somewhat fleeting. Clothes that are tight now will fit comfortably -- and I have some clothes that I really, really want to fit into. Most of my clothes fit now, because I do believe in fitting the body I have NOW.

But there's a couple of pairs of jeans I thought I'd be wearing by now . . . they taunt me.

I will no longer have to pay for Weight Watchers. This so motivates me . . . so why can't I seem to actually do what I need to do? Oops, another questions.

I might begin to work for Weight Watchers again. This also motivates me.

More self confidence. The more weight I lose, the better I feel about myself. But that also follows the law of diminishing returns, doesn't it? Obviously, I can't continue to lose weight forever. Intersting thought there, huh?

3. What do I think I need to do to move forward with my weight loss?

Eat less sweets -- not eliminate them completely, but eat less of them. They are not nutrient dense. They do not fill my belly (altho sometimes they fill my soul).

Choose smarter snacks. This has been a toughie. I don't crave veggies as snacks. This is something that obviously needs some work.

Put up more visual reminders. I used to have some up in Austin, but I don't have much here. Part of that is just the moving-in process. Part of that is just sheer laziness.

4. When do I struggle the most?

Generally right before dinner. I don't have much control over when we eat -- I have to wait for DH to come home, and that varies. So sometimes I go too long without eating, and I get really hungry. But usually I don't have any points to spare for a snack.

So that means I need to have something small before dinner. I need to revamp my eating style, again.

I have been eating mostly 4 400-calorie meals a day, getting away from the smaller, more frequent meals, but I guess I really do need another snack in the afternoon. Just need to think about what that snack needs to be.

5. What emotions am I feeding?

Tiredness, sometimes. I do have a tendency to be hungrier when I'm more tired. I need to come up with other ways to soothe myself when I'm really tired. I usually get enough sleep, but sometimes the weather might make me tired -- and sometimes (like last night) I do have trouble sleeping.

So what can I do -- other than eat -- when I'm really tired and I don't want to exercise?

Yoga, maybe. The relaxing kind, obviously. Need to build up my yoga DVD collection. Working on that already.

Read. I love to read. I don't have as much time for it as I'd like anymore.

Look thru a cookbook for recipe ideas.

Watch a prerecorded show, or a movie -- or one of my tv-show DVDs (I don't have a lot of them, but I do have a few -- one I haven't even taken the cover off of).

Maybe give the dogs an extra walk. That would depend on just how tired I really am.

Knit. Haven't been knitting at all for quite some time. It's so meditative.

Listen to music. I don't do enough of that, either.

Journal. I've completely stopped writing in my journal.

Just lay down on the bed for a while. The dogs love to snuggle with me when I'm laying down on the bed. Or lay on the floor in corpse pose, or with legs up the wall.

Enjoy a cup of tea.

I will need to make a jar with soothing-when-you're-tired activities. Maybe that's what I'll use my crystal heart for. I bought a small crystal heart when we were in Prague, and I haven't figured out what to do with it. It just sits on our kitchen table. It still definitely makes me smile.

Whew! I'm sure there's more to ponder; I've probably just scratched the surface. But I'm glad that I did. This wasn't at all premeditated.

Any questions you think I should ask myself (haven't yet decided what the next 5 should be). Any questions YOU should ask yourself?

Now I'm off to relax a bit. I kicked a kettlebell yesterday -- which didn't seem much at the time, but I bruised one of my toes pretty good and it really hurts. No running today, despite our lovely weather finally. Drats! How odd is it to actually be mad I can't run? I will still walk the dogs. But going up & down stairs is quite literally a pain, which reminds me I forgot to bring my book down here. Double drat.

On cookbook maven today:

Pondering weird foods we eat for our religion. Got one? And of course what I'm eating. My review of my frozen Passover pizza.


And if you don't get over there, and actually got this far, here are the cute new shoes I bought yesterday. Which now I can't wear due to my toe.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GEODAWG 4/2/2010 9:04PM

    Great thought provoking blog. I want those shoes!!!! And the kitty!

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DDHEART 4/2/2010 7:29PM

    Another of your really great thought provoking posts! I may have to come back to this again and again....it's got me really thinking.

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CRAVE_FREE 4/2/2010 3:56PM

    Great shoes! Great post! I hope these questions bring some answers that bring the results you're looking for! emoticon

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TODAYSAGIFT 4/2/2010 11:48AM

    Adorable shoes, cute kitty and great questions. Who could ask for more? Thanks!

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BESSHAILE 4/2/2010 10:24AM

    lots and lots of "food" for thought. I must think about my own 10 questions. thank you for the insight.

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    Ok gotta start with the shoes. LOVE THEM!

You are asking all the right questions and searching yourself for some really good and motivating answers. emoticon Keep it up my friend. emoticon

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SLIMMERJESSE 4/2/2010 9:36AM

    I absolutely LOVE those shoes. Have a collection myself. They are soooo adorable. Have a fun day.

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ME2448 4/2/2010 8:32AM

    Very good!

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CLUS1903 4/2/2010 8:10AM

    What a pretty kitty!

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I love dressing this new body!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Now, I don't have the perfect body. Not by a long shot. There's still a roll around my stomach. My butt is something no one should have to look at -- it's fine encased by clothes, but a bikini? I could probably fit into one, and not look terrible overall except for the back view. My legs are not something that need to be shown from the knee up.

But there are so many things to like . . . the strong shoulders, the small waist, the collarbones you can actually see now, the curly hair.

I know how to dress, tho. And I know how to dress to my best advantage. Lots of flaws can be camoflaged.

Some things can be hard -- I stopped off at Target, for example, because we needed toilet paper. While there, I decided to try on some jeans. Let's just say that Target jeans are not at all flattering to me. Jeans & shorts are really difficult -- well, you probably all know that story, too.

But you know what? It was ok. Because some jeans do look good on me. It's just a matter of finding which ones, and clearly Target jeans aren't the right ones. It didn't get me down.

Nor did my WI get me down (much) despite gaining weight. I knew I had -- I'd been so hungry that one week. I seriously I doubt I ate 3500 calories extra -- what you supposedly need to eat to gain a pound -- but I did, and a little extra thrown in. That was at least spread out over a couple of weeks, but I'd gained about half a pound in the 2 weeks before that, too.

Yet as I said, it didn't much get me down. I realized, as once a close spark buddy of mine did, that I've become pretty good at maintaining my weight. I've gone up & down the same 2 lbs for half a year now. While ultimately frustrating, it's also comforting in a major way.

I also realized this morning that in 2 years of my journey towards a healthy weight, I've never gained more than 3 lbs in one week. That isn't so bad. If I continue to be vigilant, barring injury or illness or major stress, there really isn't a reason I can't continue to maintain my weight.

I haven't given up on those last 10 lbs though. I still believe, with all my heart, that I am meant to be 10 lbs (or thereabouts) thinner. 15 would be even nicer, but I'm not going to get greedy here.

Have you ever thought about how maintenance will go for you? Looked at how much, at most, you've gained in a time when you're struggling? Does that make you feel better, or is it scary?

It looks like the kitchen will finally be finished tomorrow! He's supposed to pick up the counters today, install them tomorrow -- I can't believe that will take more than a day.

We had to call him -- again -- and I now I'll have to do a lot to prepare for tomorrow -- but I'm so glad to have this finished AND have been able to attend my WW meeting this week.

Over on cookbook maven:

Doesn't have much to do with food, but I ponder religion and following the rules a bit (after showing what I've eaten, of course).


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HEALTHY4JEANNE 4/3/2010 7:33AM

    sweetie, you are doing great! I am so very proud of you. Trying on jeans can be so discouraging. I am glad that you kept your attitude positive!
:) Jeanne

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DEE_DEE11 4/2/2010 12:28PM

    Love your positive attitude! I gain weight during stressful periods but tend to hover around the same weight in general. I think now I'm *really* starting to commit to losing weight so my feelings about the scale are changing. I want to see downward movement in the near future :)..the last 10 lbs are supposed to be the toughest so don't give up! emoticon

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GEODAWG 4/1/2010 6:12PM

    You just made me feel so good! I could have written your blog. I have ten more pounds to lose, too! And I keep losing and gaining back the same three or four pounds! Go us!!! It seems better somehow when another person is in the same boat with you!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BESSHAILE 4/1/2010 4:50PM

    Oh. I remember my collar bones. They're hidden right now but I expect to see them this summer.

I love clothes all the time but I love them more when I am slender

woo woo girl
great attitude

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SHEILA1505 4/1/2010 3:00PM

    Isn't it lovely finding collar bones, cheek bones, sexier feet and everything else that goes with it!

Sounds like you've been maintaining well, while gathering the momentum to attack those next 10 :))

And hugs for the comments on my blog


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BARBIETEC 4/1/2010 2:47PM

    I liked your blog... My doctor always says to me when I am giving up..

You have two choices....

Keep on going..... or Quit...

And then he says...

You know what happens if you quit don't you...

So I ask you :)

You know what happens if you quit don't you ?

You can do it! You are doing so goood!!!!!

Summer is coming and you will lose these last pounds :)

Just keep going forward :)

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TODAYSAGIFT 4/1/2010 2:37PM

    Never give up your goal of another 10! Faith does make all things possible.

Happy April! emoticon

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How are your goals coming along?

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Do you realize that we are almost one quarter of the way through the year so far? So how are your goals coming along? Do you even remember that you have some goals?

Most of my goals are actually coming along nicely. Some have been forced into a hiatus by circumstance. And others are stuck.

It's no secret my weight is stuck. I keep chipping away at that, but haven't found the solution yet. I know in the last few weeks I haven't been making weight loss quite the priority it was in the beginning of the year. Hard to imagine considering I write blog after blog about it, but it's true.

I haven't been examing my day at the end of the day, much less the entire week at the end of the week. I haven't been reading why I want to lose this weight every day -- I mean, you think you know, but the truth is, you need a reminder. Often. I haven't really been setting weight loss goals -- or I should say weight loss related goals, because I almost never play the numbers game when it comes to weight loss -- but that doesn't mean I don't have other goals.

I am signed up for my first 5k. The kitchen is almost finished. I did resuscitate my food blog.

Besides my weight, painting is stuck, too. As in I'm not doing any. The biggest problem with painting as a hobby is that you need a block of time to devote to it. Right now I'm probably devoting that time to cooking. Cooking has to be done, after all. It's harder to block out an hour or two just to sit and paint, and the truth is right now, I'm just not motivated.

Which is ok, but I still need to think about why I'm so unmotivated by it I guess. Is it because my painting area is still so cluttered? Is it because DH pushes me about it, thinking it could become a source of income? Is it because of fear of failure? Probably a combination of all of these, and it's something I need to think about.

So as we go into the second half of the first half of our year, it's time to take a look at and reevaluate your own goals. What do you need to make your goals a reality? What help will you have to ask for? Have you decided some of them weren't the right goals for you?

On cookbook maven today:

Vegan Passover

Maybe I'll get to that post about raw foods & Passover today . . . maybe not.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GEODAWG 3/31/2010 2:48PM

    Ah, my goals. I decided I need to set some!! I have used the nutrition tracker faithfully even when I clearly have eaten too much. But moving has been a problem! Thanks for the reminders to re-evaluate! I need it.

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HEYRED221 3/31/2010 11:47AM

    I can relate to a lot of what you are saying. I am not totally focused, but I'm not off the trail either.

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USARUNNERGIRL 3/31/2010 11:34AM

    Great reminder. I have some goals I am doing really well on, others that are on the verge of being done, and others that have slid by completely. It is time to relook at my life and see how I want the next quarter of a year to roll by.

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TODAYSAGIFT 3/31/2010 10:59AM

    Great reminder on the goals. Thanks.

The chocolate goodie on the link looks yummy!

Have a splendid day!

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ANNE1123 3/31/2010 10:36AM

    First time I checked out your blog, good thoughts, thanks for the post, take care. emoticon

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BZYBOYSMOM 3/31/2010 9:49AM

    You're so awesome and inspirational!!

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IFDEEVARUNS2 3/31/2010 8:54AM

    Thanks for the Vegan Passover link. My youngest is now vegan, and she didn't get to each much when we went to a friend's house for seder. But she kept her mouth shut, didn't complain and enjoyed what she could. I was very proud of her.
That said, I wish she would eat this healthy! Her diet has improved, but there's still way too much fried food.

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If you're not hungry in the morning . . .

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

. . . you probably ate too much the day before.

I haven't been real hungry the last few mornings. And I know that is directly related to my appetite running amok.

You can't face breakfast in the morning? I used to be one of those people. Now not eating within an hour of getting up is simply unthinkable for me. Usually, I'm ready to eat right away, but I spend some time on the computer first and drink a couple of glasses of water (because you should be really thirsty when you get up, too).

I know I've been eating too much. I can feel it. I didn't want to make dinner last night because a) I was tired and b) I eaten a snack in the afternoon and wasn't really all that hungry -- the point being that I didn't really need that snack. What I haven't yet figure out is the reason why.

The only good thing to come out of that overeating is that I did have only half of my "cookie" for dessert -- even though I really wanted the entire thing, even though I wasn't particularly hungry.

So, if you're having trouble with the night munchies but you're not eating breakfast, I do think you have to think about how you're eating and whether or not you need to make a change. Some people can't eat breakfast in the morning, but I think for the majority of us, if we're not hungry when we get up, it really does mean we've eaten too much the day before.

We should be hungry in the mornings. If you didn't eat anything after dinner, chances are you haven't eaten anything for almost 12 hours or so, and you should definitely be hungry.

On Cookbook maven today:

I talk about how interesting it is that when we're ready, what we need appears. It's true.


I've got some other posts planned for today (hopefully) which I think should be interesting -- why raw foods are good for Passover, and the recipe for the lamb I made last night. Very simple, very tasty, easy to make your own.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

USARUNNERGIRL 3/30/2010 3:39PM

    What an insightful blog, thank you for sharing.

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SLIMMERJESSE 3/30/2010 11:06AM

    Yes, it is something I have learned to do since starting this healthy adventure in October of 08. Prior to that, I never felt I needed breakfast. In retrospect, I can see how that lead to daily overeating. Have a wonderful day.

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TODAYSAGIFT 3/30/2010 10:45AM

    Hungry or not, I have breakfast at 8 am sharp every am now. I never used to eat breakfast - ever.

Looking forward to your posts later today! Have a SUPER day!

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GEODAWG 3/30/2010 9:04AM

    I started eating breakfast every day after I joined SP and now I cannot do without it! I wake up hungry and I love my oatmeal/cereal/eggs/toast etc. Not all on the same day of course!

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JLITT62 3/30/2010 8:43AM

    Walidgazala, I'm not quite sure how you got that I'm depressed out of my post. I can assure you that I'm not. Frustrated with my eating lately, yes. Tired, yes. But not depressed.

And I definitely don't skip breakfast! Ever! Unless I'm very, very sick, which thankfully rarely happens.

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WALIDGAZALA 3/30/2010 8:31AM

    It is accepted by most dietitians that taking a breakfast every day is mandatory for good health.
I wonder whether one has to force himself to do that or he can skip if he is depressed like you?

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Bad weeks make this a healthy lifestyle

Monday, March 29, 2010

Doesn't that seem silly? But it's true. In a diet mentality, a bad meal, a bad day, or a bad week can easily spiral into totally out of control eating because we think we've blown it.

In a healthy lifestyle, we accept that we aren't perfect. We know there will be bad meals, bad days, bad weeks.

Every once in a while I have a week where I just eat way more than I normally do. I can't always figure out why. The same things that normally satisfy me just don't.

Maybe it's hormonal. Maybe it's emotional. Maybe it's a little bit of rebellion -- I can't make that scale move, so why not eat more anyway?

I have been having one of those weeks. I must admit, I always do find these weeks scary. Because I've yo-yo'd many times before, there's always a fat girl just waiting to reappear. Or that's what my mind tells me, anyway.

I worked so hard to get where I am, it's always scary to feel my clothes even just the tiniest bit tighter.

Yet my rational mind knows that it isn't about how I eat one day, one week, or even one month. It's about how I eat over time. It's about balance over time.

OTOH, I also know the most frustrating part of it is being so tantalizingly close to my goal, only to see it slip thru my fingers again and again. But I've done it before. I can do it again. I know what to do. We know what to do: love ourselves. Not with junky food, with with healthy foods that taste good to US (not your husband, your kids, or anyone else -- sometimes it really is all about you). Take the time to put ourselves first.

So I am trying to embrace my healthy lifestyle, understand that sometimes my eating will be less than stellar, and that it will still be OK.

How bout you? Do you need to be perfect? Have you ever really been perfect? Did it make you happy?

On cookbook maven today:

Chocolate dipped strawberries

I think I may have put these into SP recipes a long time ago, but I did just make them & post them, so I thought I'd share.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

USARUNNERGIRL 3/29/2010 9:23PM

    With this mentality you will reach your goal my friend. You are so beautiful inside and out, thank you for sharing this with us today.

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TODAYSAGIFT 3/29/2010 4:04PM

    I'm trying a little bit of flexibility this go around. Perfectionism got me nowhere these past 30 some years. Best to you in your journey.


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BETWEENUS 3/29/2010 11:34AM

    This is what I think SP is really all about, getting to the mind set of a healthy life-style...Thanks

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GEODAWG 3/29/2010 11:17AM

    Amen! That is what I love about SP. Yesterday my DH and I went to lunch and I had a piece of peach/raspberry pie at this little bakery that is awesome. DH said, That is not on your diet. I said, I do not diet. I eat healthy and portion wise! Still ate 1500 cal for the day! Loved saying that to him!

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LIBBYFITZ 3/29/2010 9:25AM

    You are right Judy. we have to remember that we are human and not machines. We need to learn to lower our expectations of ourselves. It is OK to eat too much of one food, just accept it and the next meal is of a better choice. I have moved to weighing myself weekly rather than daily and that has improved my outlook. Each day is NOT being defined by my Numbers!
I am trusting myself to eat well and keep up my fitness goals and it will happen!

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HEALTHQUESTER 3/29/2010 9:19AM

    emoticonThis blog was EXACTLY what I needed to read today! Thank you so much for writing it! I've had an entire month of gains which has led to a total of almost 9 lbs put back on...it feels inevitable, that this will be the case...but reading your blog helped me see the lie in that thinking! Again, thank you! Go you! Great job! emoticon

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BZYBOYSMOM 3/29/2010 9:05AM

    I have had that mentality for years. One bad meal meant I blew it and led to a bad day,k week, month and so on! nO MORE! Life is unpredictable and we have got to learn to go with the flow and make healthy choices. I dont like those weeks where I just dont feel satisfied but I am learning to just get through them!

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RSKMOM 3/29/2010 8:56AM

  I am so working on my need to be in control, because in this stage of my life it just isn't conducive to losing weight!

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DAYHIKER 3/29/2010 8:42AM

    That's a good observation, Judy. One I can well relate to because it has taken me a long time to give up my perfectionism. I want to keep the weight off but don't want to live with that perpetual "diet don't" mentality. It's a challenge!

You're doing emoticon

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