Sunday, November 16, 2008
I struggle with this a bit, because I do just buy most things I want. Don't get me wrong, we aren't rich, and we're watching money even more these days like everyone else -- and will probably have to pinch even more when we live in NY, where everything is more expensive.
So what makes a good reward?
1. Something tangible (for me). For instance, a massage would be a great reward for me . . . except once it's done, it's done. I want something that reminds me of what I've achieved.
2. The reward should fit the job. So getting a diamond bracelet for losing 5 pounds, for instance, wouldn't make a whole lot of sense to me. The reward for losing 20 pounds should be more than losing 10 pounds, for instance.
3. A non-food reward! Absolutely. Don't go out and celebrate with a dinner at a great restaurant. Rewarding ourselves with food is part of what got us into this mess in the first place.
4. Something you don't routinely buy. If you buy CDs all the time, for instance, it's not special; to my mind, it's not a reward. I only occasionally buy CDs, so it is a good reward for me.
These are just my rules, of course. Yours can be different.
My reward for losing 10 lbs: a whirley pop popcorn maker. I'm reminded every time I use it (a couple of times a week) of how far I've come.
My reward for losing 10% of my body weight: a pedometer. Actually, this breaks rule #2, because it cost about the same as my popcorn popper.
My reward for losing 20 lbs was going to be a Wii, but I think that one will have to be pushed back a bit. Like I said, we're watching our spending. Maybe it will be a set of harmony knitting needles from www.knitpicks.com ; I really like their needles. Knitting with beautiful needles just really soothes me.
How have you rewarded yourself? What's the best reward you've earned?
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I really wish there was some way to know exactly what works -- and what doesn't. Some weeks I don't change anything, others I may change several things. There's really no way to know. So here are a few of the things I think have been working lately:
1. Really watching the little things. Making sure there's as little mindless or uncounted eating as possible.
2. Giving up a sweet treat for popcorn after dinner a couple of times a week -- although I'll keep buttering my popcorn most of the time. I eat very little butter, so I'm okay with that.
3. Started a new exercise routine: Shaun T's Rockin' Body. I really like it; it's fun, and I'm dripping with sweat by the end. Not as hard as the 30 Day Shred, but it's mostly cardio -- and it's a lot more fun.
4. I've started to journal again, apart from this blog. A written, private journal. I'd been doing that a long time, but when the weather changed, I started knitting in the time I used to journal. So now I just journal at a different time of day.
5. The last couple of days I've been doing some exercise right after I feed the dogs -- in the time I've been knitting in the past. I'm not getting as much knitting done, but I actually find I'm feeling more energized. I started because it was the only way I could figure out how to get all my workouts in on Thursday before I left for the cat rescue.
6. I don't know if there's a cause and effect here, but I started eating about 95% vegetarian with my husband gone, and often vegan. But it's hardly the only change I made, it's just an interesting factoid to me.
7. Go to my WW meeting every week.
So there you have it. Is it one particular thing working? A combination of all of it? Probably the latter. The scale still goes up sometimes, down sometimes, and stays stuck sometimes. It is what it is. But that doesn't mean we can't keep trying to figure it out!
Friday, November 14, 2008
The mysterious changing ticker. Many have commented how close I am to my goal weight -- well, I was very close to my first goal, and today I have achieved it: 10% of my body weight gone.
Now I have a new ticker -- the next 10% goal. The question is what goal date should I set? I don't usually do so well with setting dates for weight loss goals. Sometimes they come early, but more often than not they take longer than I expected. I average less than 1 pound a week.
At 1 pound a week, I could be at my next goal in 4 months. Except the holidays are coming up, I know it took me longer than 4 months to lose 15 pounds in the first place, and it just keeps getting harder the smaller you get, plus I have the added stress of the new home search and trying to seriously declutter bfore the move. So I'm going to give myself 6 months -- which puts me at let's say the end of May 2009. I'd be seriously happy if I can meet that goal -- and there's a certain symmetry to that, since I started going back to WW in May.
By now you must be wondering what the title referred to. I was very careful to really cross my ts and dot my i's this week. And it paid off at the scale. I had 2 nights where I didn't have dessert after dinner -- even though I always plan my treat, I really do need to cut back on my treats. I did, however, have buttered popcorn those nights.
As I've mentioned, one of my favorite breakfasts is a banana chocolate "pizza" (using a pita). I was using 1 tbsp of chocolate chips, but this week I cut back to 2 tsps -- and was perfectly satisfied with it. I think now I'll try it with 1 1/2 tsps.
I'm also planning to cut back on the amount of popcorn I make. I'll still have it buttered, but I'll have less of it. Going with my bowl half-full post of the other day, I was using a fairly large bowl -- and it didn't come near to filling it. Last night I used one of my pasta bowls, and it was overflowing and I was quite satisfied. It's all psychological -- the popcorn is premeasured, so I can't take too much. But if my bowl is half empty, I'm not always satisfied. If my bowl is full, I tend to be more satisfied.
Little things REALLY matter!
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Thanksgiving is two weeks away (in the US). Have you got your menu planned? Shopped for the non-perishables already? Made something and tucked it away in the freezer?
This was actually the topic of our WW meeting this week, getting ready ahead of time. Making a list & checking it twice.
It's been a little hard on me, as usual, not quite knowing what we're doing (still). We don't have any family here. Some years it's been just us; some years we've invited friends over; some years we've gone away; some years we've gone out to eat; and some years we go to friends.
I think we're just going to be us this year. I am trying to convince my husband to do the turkey trot. It's the last opportunity we'll have to do it here, although I did check & there is one where we're moving. It's a hard sell, because it means he has to get up earlier than he wants to and move -- two things he doesn't want to do. But at least we can take the dogs with us.
I have some, but not all, of my menu planned. We're not big turkey fans, so we've done alternatives quite often. I was thinking of making duck, which I haven't done in years and years, but when I did my food shopping yesterday they had turkey legs on sale. The leg is the favorite part of the turkey for both me & my husband, so turkey legs it is! Now I just have to figure out how I want to make them.
What will be on your Thanksgiving table this year? How will you navigate the favorite foods that call out to you? Do you have any Thanksgiving food traditions?
I do. Years and years ago I came across a recipe for sweet corn buns in an Italian cookbook. Corn seemed to work with Thanksgiving, so I made them. And they have been our Thanksgiving tradition ever since, and Thanksgiving is the only time of year I make them. I'm going to try to veganize them this weekend . . . the results should be interesting.
One point our leader made was to make your holiday favorites, the things you only have at one time of year, throughout the year. Because it will make you less likely to over indulge in your favorites if you know you can have them any time you want. But I think I'll keep my corn bun tradition for Thanksgiving only. They're something like a cross between a muffin and a scone -- almost a dessert, actually.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Ok, fooled you! Really, bigger isn't better when it comes to food; so why does it always *seem* like it is?
And why can't I get past that? Are you like me, when you go to grab a cookie or muffin or whatnot that you've baked, you want the biggest one? That you'll actually put your first pick back, because you think you spy one that is bigger, only when you get it out you're not sure, and you go through two or three of them until you settle on one? Why can't I just take the first thing I pick, and be done with it?
I've never been able to figure out what this is about. Trying to "fill" myself up, obviously.
This is why using smaller plates and bowls and measuring can be so important. Unfortunately, I don't have any small bowls right now. So when I fill a bowl with mac & cheese, I want a full bowl. Doesn't matter that that might be two servings, I feel deprived if the bowl isn't full. Deprivation. I guess that's what it's about. I know I'm not deprived when it comes to food, so what's the deal?
I also just wanted to send out a reminder to everyone to be present, in everything you do. I was rushing making dinner tonight. I had one part in the oven, and was hurriedly cutting cheese to grind it in a food processor -- and you guessed it, I cut my finger. I would have had plenty of time if I'd just slowed down and taken my time -- I had almost plenty of time even after I left, washed my finger, put some antiseptic on it, and slapped a bandaid on it.
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