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Perception deception

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

I was never in denial about my weight gain. Even without a scale, I had a pretty good idea of what I weighed -- although, being an optimist, I'd hoped it wasn't that much.

Many people, after losing weight, look in the mirror and still see a heavy person. I look in the mirror and still see a thinner (not thin, but thinner) person. That was why seeing myself in photos was/is always such a shock.

And isn't it weird how sometimes I can look in the mirror, and really see the changes in my body and be happy, while other times the only things I see are the rolls and the dimply skin and the stretch marks. Luckily, the times I see the changes usually win.

Perception isn't only important with how we see ourselves. It also is important with how we see our food. Portion size is always a struggle for me. In fact, I think that is at the bottom of my weight gain, because in general, I've been eating healthy for a long time now.

But my eyes tend to be bigger than my stomach, especially when it comes to sweets. I go to the farmer's market almost every weekend. I do get some veggies (although it's hard sometimes, because I bring the dogs); I also stop at my favorite "health" food stall.

And the food is pretty healthy -- mostly vegetarian, gluten free, doesn't used refined sugar, and so on. Their latest product is cupcakes. And oh boy, they're awesome. I bought two the week before last, and sadly, I ate both of them during the week. These aren't small, either, they weigh in at 4 ounces, so I would be much better off just buying one and eating half at a time. I still did lose weight, but not as much as I'd like to.

I didn't buy any this week. Maybe next week I'll buy one, although I may wait til the following week when my husband is home and we can share.

I know part of my problem was being afraid I wouldn't be able to get them the next week, because sometimes they sell out of my favorite stuff very early. Which is silly, isn't? It's not like I'm going to die if I don't have a cupcake; quite the opposite, in fact.

But portion control is something I still struggle with, especially with sweets. It's probably something I'll always struggle with. You can learn something from every experience, though, good or bad.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MTER67 6/18/2008 7:27AM

    Cupcakes are tough. Confection perfection (sort of a rhyme with your perception deception, eh?) in a little package. Congratulations on having the will power to not buy any this time. But, I think getting one and sharing it with your husband will be a nice treat. Portion control is very tricky, but once you get it down, my friend, there shouldn't be anything completely off limits. Even cupcakes!

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BRONTE7723 6/17/2008 12:54PM

    I never saw myself as large as I was. It was photo's that convinced me too.

Healthy eating is normal in my house, but...
Portion distortion is my enemy.
My kitchen scales are my best friend.

Well done on skipping the cupcake.

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Totally OT: Tshirt

Monday, June 16, 2008

This really has nothing to do with weight loss at all. Except maybe that when I'm painting I usually -- or at least often -- totally lose myself in it. It's too bad you don't burn more calories while painting, although it is hard to eat while you're painting!

This is the tshirt I'm working on. The design needs a few little tweaks -- but in general I'm fiarly happy with it. Not quite happy with the way the cat came out, but at least it's recognizable.

This is for a catswap. On a forum I frequent, a few times a year we send packages to a partner (a new one each time), with things for the cats & the humans, if desired. This is my partner's cat (or at least it's supposd to look like her.

I really like painting on fabric; not sure why. This is the first tshirt I've tried, but I've done some other fabric painting.

And now to return you to our regularly scheduled program . . .

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LSFBOOK 6/16/2008 6:07PM

    You are so talented!! That shirt is beautiful and the person who is getting it will love it. And, you're right, when you're doing something like painting, you can't eat. LOL

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MTER67 6/16/2008 5:50PM

    You're "cat swap" friend is going to be thrilled. How neat to have your cat featured on your shirt! it's beautiful and she will love it! So glad you are making the time to paint again.

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SIDNEYGIRL 6/16/2008 4:28PM

    At first I couldn't "see" the cat ~ I saw a bird's head lol ....then I Turned mine sideways and right there the kitty! Beautiful! How wonderful to be able to create such treasures with paint. I feel inspired now! all I have is house-paint tho ....uh oh

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What are you holding on to?

Monday, June 16, 2008

The other day I was wearing one of my favorite tshirts. There's nothing really special about it, I just happen to like the cut. Boxy, but not huge; slightly cut in at the shoulders; and because it's boxy, easy to wear over jeans (rather than having to tuck it in). And one of my favorite colors, purple.

I don't wear this tshirt out, though, because it has several holes in it. Put there by one of my cats when I took her to the vets. One of my cats that's gone; in fact, she's been gone three years already. I hold onto the tshirt, holes and all, because it has sentimental value to me. It reminds me of Puss, and her feistiness.

In this case, I think it's okay to hold onto this tshirt. Some day, no doubt, I'll throw it away (too worn to be donated), or maybe make it into a rag; altho I doubt I'll make it into a rag, that just doesn't seem right.

But what are you holding on to? What's in your closet right now (aha, you knew I had to have a point somewhere)? Do you have multiple sizes hanging there? Why? Are you afraid that you'll regain the weight? Afraid to let go of something you might eventually fit into?

You have to have confidence in yourself to lose weight. Holding on to clothes that are too big for you says you don't. It's almost permission to regain the weight. Donate your clothes that no longer fit.

You should be able to walk into your closet and fit into anything comfortably. There's nothing more frustrating than not being able to find anything to wear that fits. It tells you what a failure you are. Donate your clothes that no longer fit.

I do think it's okay to hold onto a small amount of clothes that are too small as motivation. I have just a couple of dresses that are too small for me that I'd dearly love to fit into again. And one pair of jeans that are the next size down. But I don't have a lot of different sizes in my closet just waiting for me.

It's not easy, I know, believe me. But you'll feel better if your clothes fit you. You won't spend so much time trying to put together an outfit to wear if everything fits.

And if all your clothes are too big for you, it's time to go shopping. Even if you'll only wear your new clothes for a short period of time. You deserve to have clothes that flatter you; you worked hard to have your body. You don't have to buy a lot, but a couple of pairs of jeans, some nice tshirts and blouses, and maybe a skirt or a dress.

Give yourself the gift of flattering clothes, no matter what your size (not always easy, either, I realize, but you can do it -- the Internet is your friend).

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ASTARB1 6/16/2008 10:15PM

    This is a great post and very timely for me, too. I've lost enough now to require a new clothes size and hubby and I are doing some shopping this week (we're on vacation from work).

I hope to ditch some of my clothes that are too big, or depending on the quality and condition, have them altered. I agree that it's easy to hold onto larger clothes as a security blanket and it's not good idea.

I do have a pair of ancient jeans in my closet that are my goal jeans. Even if (when!) I fit into them, I don't plan to wear them in public (the knees are ripped - that's how old they are), but it's a motivator for me.

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WHIMSYT 6/16/2008 3:02PM

    My favorite t-shirt has been perforated by my Cady furball when she was a kitten and liked using her claws....a lot. It's a Tigger t-shirt, too, and irreplaceable since Disney now contracts with the Gap to make its clothes and therefore have eliminated the larger sizes. So until I lose a substantial amount of weight, I can't get a new Tigger t-shirt, which is why it's one of my rewards on down the scale. So I totally understand about the purple shirt.

A closet filled with clothes I can't wear is what I aspire to accomplish! 20 pounds hasn't touched that yet.

Oh, and to answer your comment on my blog about food portions.......yep, I maintain strict portion control and recording. My partner fusses at me all the time for not eating enough, but if I'm not hungry, I'm not hungry! I have to force myself to eat breakfast; otherwise, I wouldn't be hungry before noon. If I then eat breakfast, there is no way I get hungry until late afternoon or dinner time. Right now, hunger just isn't a problem for me. It could be caused by medications I'm on; I don't know. But for now, it just is what it is. Sooner or later the scale WILL catch up with me.

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MTER67 6/16/2008 8:59AM

    My closet is full of "this-is-still-nice-and-I might-want-to-wear-it-again-someday
" clothes. I need to do that trick where you turn all the hangers backward and only switch them back when you've worn the item. After a certain amount of time, you give all the clothes you didn't wear away to charity. If I did that and was honest with the results, my closet would be almost bare. I always grab the same clothes week after week!

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Thank you, dear husband

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I am sure many are writing about their husbands today (and if you're not, maybe you should!). Mine is not even a father, but that's not his fault. If I'd wanted kids, we'd have had kids -- and sometimes I think he's sorry we didn't. But I was up front with him when we got married; that I didn't think I wanted kids.

But this isn't about me. Ok, he is a father to our animals. We call ourselves Daddy & Mommy, but mainly what else are you going to say when you say go to Daddy? Our animals are most definitely part of our family, but I don't forget that they're animals, either (even if they do sleep in bed with us -- Chester under the covers!).

I read so many blogs here with people who have unsupportive husbands, or downright abusive ones, and I know how very lucky I am. After 23 years, I love and am in love with my husband, even if he does drive me crazy at times.

Yesterday I asked him if he ever thought about a Wii. I thought they looked like fun before Wii fit came out, but now I seriously want one. But they're so expensive, I really couldn't justify the cost just for me. But I thought he might like one, too. But no, he didin't.

When I said that I'd been thinking of one as a reward once I'd lost 20 pounds (still a long way to go), he didn't hesitate. He said just tell me when, I'll pay half.

Then he said that he'd heard that someone is getting together a 30th reunion for his high school next year. He's actually interested in going. So I asked by yourself, right? And he said no, he needed his trophy wife with him. I'm no one's idea of a trophy wife, but then, maybe I am.

When we met, I was heavy. He fell in love with me when I was heavy. He thinks I'm sexy even when I'm heavy, when I decidedly don't feel sexy. I know that he likes me thinner -- he told me that when I was thinner, but he never puts me down for gaining weight, and he supports me while I'm trying to lose weight.

He is definitely a keeper.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEPMOM2BOYZ 6/15/2008 5:52PM

    Good husbands are the best gift! I'm so glad yours is such a gem. emoticon

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KRZYKAT3 6/15/2008 11:50AM

    BRAVO! thank God for good husbands!

Tell him I said thank you for treating you well and loving you! emoticon

May you love him as well, I am trying to love my husband that much too!

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MTER67 6/15/2008 8:52AM

    Three cheers for the dear husband, dad or not! I am also blessed with a great husband. I never could have anticipated what an amazing husband and father he would become when I first "latched" onto him, but thank goodness I never let go, and he stuck it out with me, too! It is important to have a partner who respects and supports you; knowing that he is behind you on your weight loss journey puts you at a great advantage. Happy Father's Day--did the furry offspring get Dad a card?

(My husband was able to call and talked to each of the kids on the phone. Of course, he lost his connection when it was my turn...but I got to talk to him a little bit! A nice gift for all of us today!)

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LSFBOOK 6/15/2008 8:16AM

    Happy Father's Day to your husband and to all husbands who are father's or not. I'm also very lucky to be married to a wonderful man.

Save your money and buy the Wii. I was finally able find and purchase one. We have talked about the exercise part but haven't bought it yet. You're right--the whole thing is so expensive. But I intend to buy the exercise part as soon as I can.

Have a wonderful day!

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Compulsive exercising

Saturday, June 14, 2008

For a non-athlete, I admit it: I'm a bit compulsive about exercising. I feel guilty if I don't get in what I've planned for the day. Like yesterday. I spent most of the afternoon baking (healthy stuff!), and by the time I was done, I was too tired to make myself dinner or strength train, which I do MWF.

I ate an Amy's frozen dinner, then remembered I still had leftovers I could have heated up! Oh well, it's not a bad choice, but my leftovers would have been even better.

I'd walked the dogs about an hour yesterday, as usual. I walk every day with them, and do some jogging intervals with them a few times a week. I'd strength trained Monday & Wednesday. Truly, it's not going to hurt me to skip a day. Yet I still felt guilty.

I did, however, have enough energy to do a weight loss yoga DVD before bed. It felt good, too. I usually do my yoga on the weekends. So I'll strength train today (and my Turbojam DVDs came yesterday -- so now I can see what people are raving about).

How compulsive are you about exercising? Did you know that there's such a thing as exercise bulimia? And no, I definitely don't have it.

While it's true that to lose weight you need to burn more calories than you take in, you shouldn't get so compulsive about it that you exercise hours a day, or feel you need to exercise a lot because you've been "bad". That's the kind of mentality that leads to injuries. That's the all or nothing mentality that keeps us losing weight, only to regain it again because we can't maintain that level of exercise as a lifestyle.

SP is so right when they say this has to be a lifestyle. They've hit the nail on the head.

If hours of exercise a day is something you see doing for the rest of your life, go for it. Me, exercise is an important part of my day. It gives me energy and helps reduce stress. But I have too much to do to spend hours on it.

Plus, at heart, I'm a lazy person. I'm perfectly content to sit & read a good book for hours, or knit for hours, or paint for hours. If someone told me I could feel energized and keep fit without ever lifting another weight, I'd be there. I probably wouldn't give up my walks, though; I enjoy them too much. I probably would give up the jogging, though.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MTER67 6/14/2008 9:01PM

    I don't always exercise every day b/c I recognize that my body needs the time to recover and repair itself b/t runs. But, when I plan a workout and miss it, I feel pretty bad about it. I didn't do much this week b/c of a combination of grouchiness and not feeling well. I am disappointed, but I am not beating myself up. In a lifetime of exercise, one day, or one week, is not going to make a big difference. As long as you recognize the need to get back to work as soon as you can! Another great blog, as usual!

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ASTARB1 6/14/2008 7:54PM

    I love your comment that you're a lazy person at heart, because I can definitely identify with that.

I just know how I feel when I don't exercise, and I make sure to do the activities that I enjoy and make it as "painless" as possible. For me that means working out first thing in the morning, when my energy level is high.

I know what you mean about feeling the guilt, but it sounds like you don't make it a habit of skipping your planned exercise, so it's okay to give yourself a break once in a while.

Keep up the great work!

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KIMMERQU 6/14/2008 5:18PM

    First of all I want to know what healthy things you baked...lol. You are going to love Turbo Jam. My advice is to do the Learn & Burn dvd several times until you are comfortable with the move. Be careful of the kicks and your knee alignment. When you feel comfortable with it move on to the 20 Minute Workout. I'm not as fanatical as I was when I first started here about working out. Now if I miss a day or 2 without exercising I miss it but I don't feel as guilty because I know I'm eating healthier.

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