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Are you invisible?

Monday, September 14, 2009

I was out food shopping the other day. I normally avoid it like the plague on weekends, but I'd been too sick during the week to tackle it (and luckily we had enough food to get by on). As I'm walking back out to my car, I hear the person behind & to the right of me trying to start her car. Again and again and again. I muttered to myself "that doesn't sound good".

She finally got it started, pulled up alongside me, and rolled down her window. She said yeah, she needs a new starter, but she'd just moved here a few days ago. I replied I'd just moved here a few months ago. And we got to chatting for a few minutes. Kind of bizarre, actually.

And I got to wondering -- would this have occurred when I was 30 lbs heavier? Do I hold myself differently now? Probably. Do people just ignore heavier people? Sometimes.

I didn't really think I was trying to make myself invisible before, but I think subconsciously, in some ways, I was. Most of my wardrobe was comfortable -- it's hard not to gravitate to comfortable clothing when you're overweight and shopping is such a hassle and even well fitting clothes can be uncomfortable. But comfortable often means clothes that are really too big for you, and in the end just make look even bigger than you are. Because style takes time, money, and effort, and these are three things you probably don't think you deserve.

I have been buying a lot more form fitting clothes lately. Nothing real fancy, a lot of basics, but not the loose and comfortable styles I was gravitating towards when I was heavier. I've gone a little nutty over shoes lately, too. Even shoes can be hard when you're heavy.

I've been buying shoes with actual heels again. When you're as short as I am, you need all the help you can get! But heels are so uncomfortable when you're carrying extra weight; you go for the comfortable shoes again, and while I tried hard to find comfortable shoes that looked good, the two often don't go together. Now, the higher heeled shoes I'm buying now are still pretty comfortable -- I still won't be in pain to look good -- but they just wouldn't have been 30 lbs ago.

It goes way beyond clothes, too. I didn't want my picture taken. I like looking at pictures of myself, but I didn't 30 lbs ago, and so I just didn't want them taken. Which totally frustrated my husband, whose hobby is (or at least used to be) photography. And he's just gotten out of the habit of taking my picture much over the years.

Of course the real trick is to accept yourself at any weight. I wish I could say I do that, but obviously, I don't. My hat is off to those that are fit, fat, and happy. I envy them.

My point, though, is that we shouldn't let ourselves fade into the background no matter what we weigh. The minute we start treating ourselves as worthwhile people, the weight will begin to come off. Because if you feel worthy, you're willing to go the extra mile for yourself -- whether that's starring in the photos of your life, finding flattering clothes, exercising, or eating well. Yes, it takes time and effort, but you are so worth it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUZY6281 9/16/2009 10:06AM

    Thank you for a very inspirational blog. Yes, I do understand the invisible thing. I think we carry ourselves more confidently and have a more "open" air about us when we truly feel good about ourselves. So much is told with body language.

And the shoe thing. I'm with you, girl. I've recently rediscovered heels and I love them. In fact, I'm developing a shoe shopping addiction that I need to get under control. Ha! If it isn't one addiction, it's another.


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MOMMA_GRIZZ 9/14/2009 7:10PM

    I was my experience that large people are invisible - I've experienced both sides now. It's unfortunate and sad but it's true. When I lost weight I had to actually learn how to interact with society - for years I was 'unseen' and it was actually kind of scary.

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MTER67 9/14/2009 1:20PM

    Very thought provoking blog. I think many times overweight people ARE invisible. Maybe by choice; maybe not. Our culture in general looks down on overweight people (women in particular, I believe)--even while it also encourages us to overeat and loathe our bodies for their imperfections. It is a wonder that anyone would want to be "visible" when you think about it!

Congratulations on discovering the real you. It really doesn't matter whether you wear new jeans or old baggy clothes...the important thing is to be happy in the skin you're in.

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LEONALIONESS 9/14/2009 10:10AM

    Heh. I still am afraid of having my picture taken. I can look in the mirror and see a slim girl now (and go holy crap, that's me?) most of the time but I'm actually a bit terrified of seeing a photo of myself. I know I'll just find all my flaws and focus on the bits I don't like... how my arms aren't flab free or how my waist isn't as small as I'd like... etc.

So, I haven't taken nor seen a pic of myself, full body, since I've lost weight.
I need to get over it, I think. There will always be things I don't like about how I look and I don't think even hitting goal in 6 lbs or even dropping another size to a four will change that. Hell, if I can still feel "fat" at a 23 BMI and size 6 pants, I obviously have some sort of disordered body image stuff going on. I'm hoping to fix this eventually because it's a problem. For sure.

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RIPPEDPAUL1 9/14/2009 8:29AM

    It sounds like you are in a great place! Keep it up! emoticon emoticon

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KARBIE18 9/14/2009 8:00AM

    Great blog, as usual. I did the same thing - wore large clothes, just to be comfortable. I, too, am buying more form fitting clothes. I also notice the way people treat me, but I think much of it is because I put myself out there more. I'm much more open.

So glad we are going through this together!


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RIDLEYRIDER 9/14/2009 6:57AM

  You said it! We ARE worth the effort, every bit. And sadly, society does NOT take fat women seriously. Wish it were different, but it's a fact.

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ANNEROUSSEAU 9/14/2009 6:12AM

    Thanks for sharing this!

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CATCANDLISH 9/14/2009 5:26AM

    Love this! We are all worth it, thanks for putting it out there!

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Are you afraid of food?

Sunday, September 13, 2009

I know I am sometimes. Funny, this blog has been kicking around in my head for a while, and yet yesterday's WW meeting was about this very subject, under a different title. It was about going out to eat & not being afraid to spend our WPs (something I ALWAYS do) -- yet spending them wisely.

But are you afraid to go out to eat? Afraid to go out with friends, because they might lure you into something unhealthy? Afraid to go out to parties or to a friend's for dinner, because you won't be able to control what you eat?

I know I have been -- and still am sometimes. It's something I continue to work on. We shouldn't be afraid of food. Food is fuel; food IS pleasure, and that's okay; food is NOT the enemy, even though sometimes it feels that way.

Part of a healthy lifestyle is making our peace with food and not giving it so much power over our lives. It's sort of silly when you think about it, isn't it? Giving so much power to food? Assigning it good or bad categories? Fearing a few carbs or a little sugar?

Life isn't all about food, it's just that simple. Although it can certainly feel that way, the truth is it isn't! It's about hanging out with our friends and family. It's about nourishing ourselves in a healthy way. It's about relegating food to its actual role (to nourish us) rather than the role we assign it -- friend and comforter.

I'm still working on it myself. I still worry when I have an event to that involves food. I don't know how the people who eat out all the time do it, frankly. But I know that it's a fight worth fighting. To take away all my fears about food, and just treat it as a healthy part of my lifestyle.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOMMA_GRIZZ 9/13/2009 12:33PM

    Yes sometimes I'm afraid of food - or rather my reaction to food, especially red light food. But it takes practice to treat food as fuel and when at a social gathering to understand one is there for the people and not the food. I'm not sure how people who eat out all the time do it either, but we are getting there. Our habits (and reactions to food) are definitely changing, for the better, I think.

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KATELJM 9/13/2009 8:40AM

    Yes, when I know I have to report and track what I eat, I am afraid of certain foods. Are they really worth what they cost in calories and nutrition?

It's been very hard to choose a cocktail. Take a B52: 558 calories! No nutritional value! Eeek!

I resent many sauces (actually, I have been leery of sauces for a very long time -- couldn't fathom why it was all-important to master a white sauce in our 6th grade cooking class sponsored by the local electric company).

Now it's a struggle for me to add healthy oils because of years of distrust of those calories, but I can at least appreciate the nutritional value now.

All that aside, I can always justify a bite of a good cheesecake, but it has to be wonderful, or I feel cheated. One or two bites are all I really want.

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Fall is here & more Cape pics

Friday, September 11, 2009

First off, I want to thank everyone who has sent me goodies; they are so much appreciated. This is almost exactly the same cold I had the last time we came back from MA -- I told my husband I can't go to MA anymore. Wednesday afternoon I spiked a fever and was totally miserable & totally lost my appetite. Thankfully, that was the only day with a fever. I'm still way tired, and not doing much other than walking the dogs in the morning. But I'd rather have this now than when we go to Europe! I spent my time in Paris recovering from a cold. But I still had a great time.

We left and it was summer; we came back and it's very definitely fall, down to trees beginning to turn. In Austin, it's still hot. It seems so weird to have such cool weather so early.

I've got to get my mind right to exercising in the winter, too. I know I can do it -- I lost almost 40 lbs while I lived in VT, while working full time -- if I can do it there, I'm sure I can do it here. I didn't even have dogs to get me outside there (altho I still walked outside in the winter when I lived there -- not every day, but often).

But I also know how tempting it can be to just curl up in a little ball and never move when it's cold & dark out. I am so happy that I didn't get rid of my treadmill. I thought about it. I wasn't using it much til I began to get serious about running, and now I'm running 3 times a week (slowly, slowly), and I am so glad I kept it, big hulking thing that it is, eating up much of the space in our family room.

I finally figured out how to get the photos off my phone -- again, they don't really tell you how, but with a little trial & error I figured it out. So here are the rest of my photos -- not quite as good quality, but not bad -- camera phones are almost made for blogging, I swear, & I love my new phone! Mostly more dog pics, but one or two arty ones, too, and one I'm especially fond of.

Chester is real fond of making sure he's curled up against you, touching as much body as possible -- often with his head on some limb or lap (notice Lola hamming it up in the background).

Lola will take over any warm spot on a bed. And she is inordinately fond of pillows.

Gee, he looks thrilled, doesn't he? Our first dinner. At first they said we'd have to bring it out ourselves -- but DH talked to someone else & she happily brought out our meals.

The dogs waiting for some lobster. They didn't like it -- which is weird, because they'll pretty much eat anything.

The reflection in the window caught my fancy. I really like this picture!

Eating out in downtown Falmouth.

He looks like he's standing up, but Chester's laying down, too.

The boats at the beach right before the knob.

The hotel we're staying at in Prague isn't in old town, but it has a Metro stop right in the building. Since it's about a 15 minute Metro ride, I'm assuming it's too far to walk. But it's also got a shopping mall with a supermarket, and continental breakfast included.

There's a fitness center, but there's an extra fee. Wifi is $45/day, so I shudder to think what it will cost to use the fitness center. But I think I will, at least a few times, just to get some running in (not sure of the safety of running on my own in the city).

There's a spa, too, but I figure I need to save my pennies for some walking tours and/or day trips (altho one of the day trips I can take is to a spa). Haven't had a massage in ages, but those tours really do add up.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOMMA_GRIZZ 9/11/2009 11:57AM

    Thanks for sharing your pictures - your babies sure are cute! Have an awesome day - feel better soon.

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Cape Cod 09

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

We left early Thursday for Cape Cod. Chester is a great traveler -- just lays down & goes to sleep. Lola is a different story. She was fine for half an hour, then apparently had a psychotic break & paced the rest of the way (another 3 1/2 hrs). It got so bad that for the last 2 hours I sat in the back with her, but she just circled on my lap, so it didn't really help all that much. It wasn't a fun trip down. Oh, and we stopped about 4 times.

Once we got there, she was fine, even when we were riding around to go do stuff. Friday we relaxed in the morning, then headed over to my inlaws house, which is on the market. I weeded the front path -- doesn't sound like much, but no weeder, gloves, or anything else remotely resembling a gardening tool. DH talked with the realtor, the roofer, the landscape guy & the property manager guy they're thinking of hiring. I'm not sure who had the worst deal.

Lola exploring the beach at the place where we stayed. Because there were a lot of dogs there, Lola basically had to be on leash at all times except in our room. Chester got to be off leash occasionally, since he's much better around other dogs, but he had a few naughty moments, too, where he lost that privilege.

I made my husband take photos of me. I think he was rather shocked I actually asked him to photograph me -- hasn't happened much in the last, oh, 10 years or so. He's probably a bit rusty, too. So here I am with the dogs, in one of my new skorts. Not my best photo, but not too bad.

We took the dogs to a beach called the Knob, which is a private beach that allows dogs. We had a photo shoot with this rock.

Surfer dude.

We let Lola off leash to climb the rock, too.

I was actually surprised Chester was able to make it up there on his own; it's a pretty big rock. There was sort of a natural step in the back, but it was still a pretty good jump for him. Lola is queen of all she surveys, or at least she likes to think so.

Looking out at the ocean.

We saw this guy on a surf board with this pump thing -- kind of like those all rail road thingees, only on water? Never seen something like this before.

All in all, the dogs did pretty good. A bit barky when people walked past the room sometimes. And I went out to read & had Chester on my lap a couple of times -- off leash -- and once he took off when he saw another dog & wouldn't stop when I asked him to, which is unlike him. He got to sit on the ground for that.

I'd brought enough food for breakfast & lunch every day except lunch the day we came back. Once we walked over to a market for subs, because DH didn't bring food for himself (I'd offered to bring some stuff).

There was an ice cream place about 1/2 to 3/4 mile away, and DH wanted ice cream, but I told him we'd have to walk there to get it. We never had ice cream -- he wasn't happy about it, but then, he had the car & the keys & could've gone by himself if he'd really wanted to. I had brought some brownies with me, and we had that.

So it was semi-relaxing. Lola was just as bad on the way home, but I just let her pace this time. Last night I had a sore throat, and I'm tired, achy, & sniffly today. But it was a glorious weekend -- not a drop of rain the entire time.

We were fairly limited in where we could eat dinner since it had to be somewhere with either take out, or a patio we could sit on with the dogs. But my husband got his lobsters and his lobster salad sandwich. We even bumped into a coworker of his walking around town, which was pretty bizarre!

So now that we've been, we'll probably travel with the dogs again. I'll try giving Lola a sedative next time. I still had some from when we moved up here, but she's just never been like that in a car before & I really didn't expect her to be that bad. Altho it's a lot of work for me. I'm the one getting up at the regular time & walking them every morning.

However, payback is sweet, as they say. Next month I'm going to Europe for almost 2 weeks with DH -- business trip for him, pleasure for me. We'll be in Dresden just a few days, and then the rest of the time in Prague.

I've only been to Europe a few times, and always as part of a business trip with DH. The first time was Greece (not bad, huh?), with one day in Copenhagen because that's where our connection was.

Then about 3 years ago DH was supposed to go to a meeting in the Netherlands, and it just happened to fall on our anniversary. I literally flew to Europe for the weekend! It was crazy, but fun. And a couple of years ago, also around our anniversary (as is this trip) he had a conference in Paris.

I wasn't really planning to be there quite so long this time. I was willing to go over by myself, or come home earlier or something. We've only had the dogs with the person we board them with for one overnight so far -- and now we're jumping to 2 weeks! Not to mention what 2 weeks in Europe will do to my waistline. It's a little scary. I haven't had a 2 week vacation in about 15 years I think.

I'd love to bring my oatmeal & PB, but that would mean bringing an entire jar of PB. It's going to be hard enough to pack as it is. DH definitely wouldn't understand that, but then, he never does.

Not that I'm complaining, mind you. I'll walk a lot, but I still expect that I'll gain weight. I was sort of hoping I could maybe get to my goal weight by the end of the year, but somehow I suspect it's not going to happen this year. But 10 is mine!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUZY6281 9/10/2009 1:59PM

    I love the photo of you sitting on the steps. You look so happy and so beautiful!! And the dogs, well the photos of them on the rock are wonderful. Chester reminds me very much of my chihauhau, Faith.

We have never traveled with our dogs. We found a wonderful place to board them locally, a "doggy daycare". They allow the dogs to play with each other out in a big yard and even have a swimming pool for them. When we drop the dogs off there, they don't even look back. Ha!

Glad you had a great trip. Sounds pretty darn awesome.


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MTER67 9/10/2009 11:55AM

    First of all--I love the pictures! You look really great and the dogs, well the dogs look like fashion models with their fur blowing in the ocean breezes! Too funny! Sounds like you had a nice, relaxing time, even if your traveling companions did not always behave themselves as you would have liked.

Wow, 2 weeks in Europe! How exciting! I wouldn't worry too much about how you'll eat. You will do so much walking and exploring and fresh foods won't be hard to find (it's not America, after all!) Can't wait to hear all about it. Prague will be amazing, I bet!

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DDHEART 9/9/2009 4:15PM

    What a great trip even though one of your "children" had trouble with the trip! I loved all the pictures and am so glad you shared......remember, you will need to do the same on your next trip....I'm so jealous! Well in a good way, I love my friends to have nice trips especially when they share their travels. Thanks!

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    First of all, I LOVE that photo of you in your pretty skorts with the dogs. Your smile is simply brilliant... You looked so happy! Secondly, two weeks in Europe? I'm SO jealous! As diligent as you are, I am certain you will get plenty of walking in Europe. Reaching your goal weight is just a matter of time, my friend. It will happen for you because you are so consistent.

Thanks for sharing your vacation photos! emoticon

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 9/8/2009 7:08PM

    It looks and sounds like you had a wonderful time. Europe is going to be amazing - lucky you! Glad to hear your weekend went well. :)

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SEKSUNSHINE 9/8/2009 3:13PM

    It sounds and looks like you had a great holiday! The pictures are great! 2 weeks in Europe! What a life style. I've never been out of the USA. Been pretty much everywhere in it, just not out of it. You will definitely have to take lots of pictures to share!

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I made it thru the wilderness

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Probably a bit premature, considering we're going out of town tomorrow, but I really do feel that way. Another 1/2 lb and the ticker will be moving again. Yup, pretty much lost the weight I'd gained -- slowly, as always, but it's gone & I'm glad.

So that song has been running thru my head off & on for a while. Hard as it was to gain so much weight so quickly for the first time in over a year, it was probably a good thing. Once I got over my pity party, I just got right back down to business. I still don't think I ate differently than I had been all along -- but obviously too much entertaining & parties said otherwise.

One thing I did to get back on track was to really pay attention to my water consumption. I made absolutely sure I was getting about 9-10 glasses a day. Hungry & I just ate? Drink some more water. It definitely seems to have helped.

I started to pick a few daily goals for myself. I haven't in the last few days -- life has been busy -- but I know that's another thing that's helping me, so I'll pick it up again. It might be doing my strength training; drinking at least 8 glasses of water; tracking every BLT (bite, lick & taste) -- and so on.

One odd thing is that I seem to have lost my ability to tell how I'm doing by my clothes. I lost 1.4 lbs this week -- normally I can tell if I've lost that much. I might not be able to tell a quarter or a half a pound, but I can usually tell at the 1 lb mark. I *thought* I'd had a good weight loss this week, but I wasn't sure. My WI jeans still feel a bit tight. Weird.

Also, the accountability of weighing in every week really helps me. I always use it -- good, bad, or ugly -- to take stock of what I'm doing and whether or not it's working for me. I don't have a scale at home -- weighing daily would definitely drive me nuts; I know myself. But I really, really need those weekly WIs. Only took me 20 years to learn that, but hey, sometimes I'm slow.

And my report on the flat belly diet? It actually seems to be working. Oh, it's really too soon to tell, but as I said, I had a good weight loss this week. It could've just been my time; it could've been a fluke; but I have been eating slightly differently.

For instance, I did my oatmeal with PB & chocolate chips yesterday. Only I used 2 tbsp of PB (which is the flat belly portion for PB) -- normally I'm only using 1/2 tbsp. It kept me full right up until lunch, which is good, because on this diet you get 4 400 calorie meals a day, which means I have to give up one snack.

I do find I'm just slightly hungry, but that might just be a good thing. If I'm not ready to gnaw of my own arm, but just slightly hungry, it can mean I'm actually burning off some of that fat.

The main reason I picked up the cookbook was because the recipes just appealed to me. And most of the ones I've tried so far really are yummy -- and most of them even DH has enjoyed (with the exception of the eggs florentine, oh well, just more for me).

So now, just wish me luck that I can at least maintain thru the next several days of being away. I'll be bringing some food with me, but we will hopefully be eating out some, even with the dogs in tow -- because I haven't eaten out in almost a month. I so did not want to cook last night, but I did it. When I get back, I'll try more Flat Belly Diet recipes & we'll see if that really warrants a change in my eating style.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Congratulations on getting back on track and losing all the regained weight. Good for you for bringing some food with you on your trip. I hope you are enjoying a wonderful holiday weekend.

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MTER67 9/3/2009 9:22PM

    Lots of great stuff in your blog today. Love how you always manage to put a positive spin on you setbacks and learn something new about yourself while you overcome them. Glad that you are back on track and the scale is going in the right direction again!

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KEAKMAN 9/3/2009 9:38AM

    Sounds like you are back and track and really ready to enjoy a new chapter in your life. I hope you have a marvelous time on your mini-vacation. Make sure we see some pics of you enjoying the great outdoors. (did you decide on/find out about good places to go with the dogs?)

Have fun!

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DDHEART 9/2/2009 4:34PM

    You'll do great on your mini vacation and what's more you'll enjoy a little much needed R&R....right now you have an increased awareness of your eating so you will have that inner voice guiding you...Have a great time!

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MOMMA_GRIZZ 9/2/2009 4:26PM

    Congrats on the loss - 1.4! That is fantastic! The recipes seem to be agreeing with you. I'll have to find the book and give it a peruse.

Have fun with your time away - enjoy!


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