Monday, August 18, 2008
It's feels that way sometimes, doesn't it? Like I can't help wondering if I ended up with a cold because I was too focused on trying to lose weight before going on vacation. Anytime you get too unbalanced one way, something's got to go.
I got a cold right before we went to Paris about a year ago, too. Only then I wasn't concerned with my weight (and trying to lose weight wasn't even on the horizon); and I wasn't seeing relatives whom I haven't seen in a long time.
Still, there really IS more to life than sparking, tracking food, exercising, and preparing food, even if some days it doesn't feel that way.
I don't think I'll come up with any answers today.
Another moral dilemma I'll be wresting with is what to eat on vacation. I am not a vegetarian. I eat everything. I enjoy a good prime rib, rack of lamb, and especially sushi.
Yet more and more I am troubled by how that meat that ends up on my plate meets its end. I don't actually think it's morally wrong to eat meat -- but I do think that said meat ought to be treated respectfully, even when being slaughtered, and it doesn't take a whole lot of digging to know that just isn't so.
I also know I could never bring myself to kill an animal (okay, I do not classify insects as animals -- just ask that saw palmetto bug I took out this morning, even though I did try to let it make its escape first, but the silly thing would hunker down right in my sink).
And why is it okay to eat a cow and a pig, but not a dog or a cat (and of course, this all depends on where you live and how you were raised)? A pig is supposedly more intelligent than a dog. Who says it's okay to eat one type of meat, but not another?
It's easy to eat vegetarian when I'm by myself. It's harder to do so when the food is free (mostly) , good, and plentiful.
I know I stopped eating veal completely when I found out how it is raised. I won't eat lobsters because of the way they are cooked (although I have in the past -- but I refused to actually put it in the pot myself).
Cruises offer vegetarain fare. I've no doubt I will eat some vegetarian meals. I know I'll probably eat a fair amount of fish. I hope so. But will I be able to pass up prime rib? Or rack of lamb? I actually make prime rib occasionally, and its one of my signature dishes. I do it just as good, if not better, than most restaurants. I have not come to a decision yet.
It is one of the reasons I love shopping at my farmer's market. I can buy chicken, pork, lamb, bison, eggs, and grass fed beef there. I can support my local community while hopefully insuring the humane treatment of food animals. All of that comes at a price -- none of it is any cheaper at the farmer's market than it is in the store.
I guess I need to just ponder Winston Churchill instead:
"It is a mistake to try to look too far ahead. The chain of destiny can only be grasped one link at a time."
Sunday, August 17, 2008
That's what Dara Torres said she did -- she didn't look to see where the other swimmers were, she just swam her race. And she won a silver medal at the age of 41.
It's hard not to be envious of people sometimes. Of those that can eat anything and not gain an ounce, or those that shed weight quickly. I am not immune to it. In about the five months I've been measuring it, I've lost about 13 pounds. 20 weeks; 13 pounds, so less than a pound a week on average. And it already seems to be slowing down.
No matter, though. Yes, I get frustrated sometimes. But it's so nice to pull on smaller jeans and have them fit. Some of the people who lose weight quickly may or may not keep it off. Of course, I may or may not keep it off as well. But I do believe that I will. I am swimming my own race, for the most part.
And yes, I most definitely do have a cold. Not that bad as colds go, and hopefully by Friday I won't be too stuffed up. It's funny, I really do believe that things happen for a reason. Back at Passover, I bought 2 jars of matzo ball soup; I didn't use them. I'm sure using them now! There's nothing more comforting than holding something warm in your hands when you're sick & chilled.
Of course, I'm also trying to figure out just how I'll get everything done before we leave now, when all I want to do is lay down, but I know that when all is said & done, we will leave & we'll have a great time.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
I ran across this on someone's blog, and she attributed it to www.sparkpeople.com/mypage.asp?id=BE
CA63 , altho I couldn't find it.
Still, I'm feeling under the weather today -- plus I thought it was brilliant! -- so I'm stealing it.
Choose your hard:
1. Being fat is hard
2. Losing weight is hard
3. Maintaining a weight loss is hard
So choose your hard. Weight loss isn't easy, as we all know, but it's all about the choices. We can choose to give up and go back to what we were -- but if you do what you always did, you get what you always got.
We can choose to do the work. It is hard, it takes dedication and perserverance, and it's never as fast as we want (which is overnight). But the rewards are many, if only you stop to notice them.
And when we get to our goal weight, we can choose to maintain our loss. We can continue our healthy new lifestyle -- which isn't always easy, especially when you no longer have the high of those pounds rolling off -- or we can choose to revert to our old habits.
Choose your hard.
And on a personal note, I could use a few vibes. I had a raging sore throat last night, which often precedes a major cold coming on. It's a little better this morning, but I'm still achy, tired, and slightly congested. I would definitely much rather be sick now than on vacation, but if you've ever flown while congested, you know how terribly painful it can be. So I'm just hoping I'm not real congested by next Friday.
Friday, August 15, 2008
If you're in this journey just to lose weight, you may or may not be able to complete your journey -- and sustain it; especially if you're trying to lose weight for a specific event. Events are great motivators, but what happens after that event has come & gone? Do you let your healthy habits slip away?
If you're in this journey to become healthy, you're more likely to sustain your weight loss. It's hard to keep up your motivation simply to fit into a certain size of clothes; it's much easier to keep motivated when you can breathe easier, put on your jeans without having to lay down, and when your joints don't ache with every movement because you're carrying around _____ extra pounds.
But it's a long and winding road, isn't it? It's okay -- no, it's imperative -- to take rest stops along the way. Just as you would if you were taking a long road trip. Because if you don't rest, you either fall asleep at the wheel or run the risk of running out of gas.
So what do I mean by rest stops? I don't mean giving up your healthy habits. We all know where that leads us. I mean hanging out at a certain weight for a while, instead of killing yourself trying to break through a plateau. See if this is a weight you can comfortably sustain. Eat a little bit more *healthy* food (not treats, but more whole grain carbs, more lean protein, maybe more fruits & veggies -- actually, sometimes eating more healthy food can help you bust through a plateau). See what it feels like to maintain your weight, because that's the hardest part of all.
Once you've taken your rest, you can decide whether or not you want to continue on with your journey. There is no clock ticking saying you must lose weight by a certain date, and don't worry about how much others are losing in what amount of time. We are all unique, and we all have our own unique way of losing weight -- and our own unique goal weight, for that matter.
Believe in yourself, and it will happen; in the words of Frank Lloyd Wright, the famous architect:
"The thing always happens that you really believe in; and the belief in a thing makes it happen."
Thursday, August 14, 2008
The Olympics just holds so much for us to learn from. It's sort of funny, when you look at all those beautiful, toned bodies & realize that their struggles actually mirror our own.
Take the US Women's Gymnastics team. They had the opportunity to win the gold medal, but the Olympics Gods were not with them and they won the silver.
It's funny when you think about it -- the men won the Bronze, and were overjoyed to do so; the women won the silver -- meaning they are the second best team in the world -- and felt they fell short of their goals.
There were a lot of expectations and pressure laid on their shoulders. How often do you feel you fall short of your goals? Are your expectations of yourself too high?
I don't think the expectations for the women's team was too high, but it's a good lesson to all of us that no matter how hard we try, sometimes we just fall short; and we must still celebrate how far we have come and how much effort we have put into ourselves.
What do you think the gymnasts will do? They still have to compete in individual events; some of them, anyway. They will pick themselves up, again, and try their hardest. Maybe this time they will reach their goals; maybe they won't. But no matter what, they will keep trying. And there's a lesson for us in there.
I can't resist adding that the dogs are really enjoying the Olympics, too (the cats, self-absorbed animals that they are, could care less -- but then, they're already gymnasts -- when they want to be).
When I shout "alright!" they think they're going to get food and go running off. When I gasp, they turn around and look at me with concern. And they like the fact that I'm sitting down watching tv more than usual, so they get to snuggle with me more than usual.
I'm still getting my workouts in. Probably not the little extras I would sneak in if I weren't watching the Olympics, which is ironic, but exercise is just a given in my day. I tape the Olympics, fast forward through some of it, and definitely skip the commercials. I can boil down about 9 hours of taped coverage to maybe 2 hours of viewing (which is way more tv than I normally watch).
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