Tuesday, March 02, 2010
This morning started off wonderfully in terms of SparkPeople contacts! I received some very nice comments on my recent blogs! I was really touched!
That wonderful sunshine feeling did not sustain me very far through the day, however. Another night of not sleeping well made for a sluggish day. The kind of fatigue that I experienced today is becoming all too routine. It makes it so hard to concentrate at work, to do the kind of work that I'd be proud to add above my name. I work with the backdrop of the ever-present possibility that I'll be laid off, so I cannot complain about having work! I am fortunate and I know it, but the stress of looking over my shoulder is exhausting.
In the past, I would have overloaded on sugar and/or carbs in an effort to muster the energy to function. I did not do that today. I did get some exercise in, but not as much as I would have hoped. I walked a longer walk today and it took less time, so that monkeys with the time/calorie metric.
My head is full of "shoulds". I should go take a walk, I should do some strength training. I should do the housework that the BF is ignoring and I really should do my taxes. On the other side of that dialog is a bone-weary tiredness and the barest beginnings of a sore throat.
My walk today was interesting and challenging. The day has been "changeable" - raining like crazy for the morning commute, overcast and blue sky mix. When I walked, it was cool, damp, grey+blue sky. I walked down the hill to the street and walked up the street to the next driveway. Along that short walk, I saw some plants I've never seen before. I want to go that way again soon and see what kind of flowers will appear. When I walked up the next driveway, I was not out of breathe! The last time I walked up that driveway (at least 2-3 years ago, maybe 5!), I was nearly crawling by the time I reached the cafe! To discover that I was only slightly winded was a wonderful surprise! I grabbed a banana and walked the rest of the way up the hill to my desk. All that walking was only 16 minutes!
So, do I follow through on the "shoulds"? Do I, in the name of taking care of myself, take the rest of the day off? Or is that a convenient sliding back into putting off the rest of today's exercise? I am choose to believe that the growth I've experienced, am experiencing, the support of SparkFriends, etc. will help me stay moving forward after this respite. I will not slide back into the couch potato that I was........
I am frustrated by the fatigue, by the minimal exercise, by the betrayal of my body! And I don't like ending on such a note, but I am too tired to be lucid!
Thank you, SparkFriends! I really need you!
Tuesday, March 02, 2010
I started the day as per my new normal with SparkPeople. I begin the day with a lot more energy than I used to. It's still not much, but it is a noticable improvement. But, as the morning wore on, I just felt tired. I didn't feel like walking, it was hard to stay focused at work.
I was supposed to meet a coworker for lunch to talk about running. We're both in Toastmasters and she'd inspired me with a speech about how she began running last year. But I postponed it because a friend said she was going to be around the corner from me and wanted to get together. We had not firmed up a time and so I felt tethered to my desk. I took a shorter walk at lunch than I wanted to just because I thought I saw her car and did not want to miss her.
It was a good thing that I brought some food because the meet never happened. I used to be shy or embarrassed about using my food scale. That's not true any more! People see me using it and it becomes a conversation starter, some times...
I mentioned last week that I'd put a want ad in the company newsletter asking for a pedometer. A friend said that, if she can find hers, I may have it...We'll see.
Oddly, I found myself wanting to eat sugar and salt this afternoon, not literally, but I was thinking about pretzels, chocolate, cookies - all things I would not want to put in my nutrition tracker! I ended up eating half a banana with some chunky peanut butter. It did not satisfy, but, as I was eating it, I realized that I was not "hungry", that I was stressed, bored and tired. I pondered that for a minute, recognized and acknowledged the situation and moved on. This was not a victory, per se, but it is a step forward. I finished the water quotient early in the day.
This evening, I went to school and thought about eating. I had an apple and a small package of trail mix. The trail mix had fewer calories than my usual meal bar, which I had forgotten from my first week on SP.
It turned out that class was cancelled. This means another week's wait to find out about my midterm... I came home, did some chores and made a wonderful dinner. I ended the day within range in all categories. I also had a couple of shorter walks, so, cumulatively, I did get the time in. I did not burn as many calories as I wanted to - my goal this month is a 10% increase over last month.
I saw a SparkPeople blog early this morning that contained a link to a site where a company is matching pounds pledged to money for a food bank. I forget the name of the site, but I signed up and pledged a 30 pound loss. Before I really thought about it, a link was posted on my Facebook page. Astonishingly, I had almost immediate feedback from a couple of people! I guess that means that my losing weight journey is no longer my secret! Part of me is uncomfortable with that, but I am also a little bit freed by being "outed" as it were. Perhaps this is just another aspect of SP and it's not one that I anticipated. Caught by surprise, this will take a bit to absorb, process and integrate into my new self.
Perhaps these are building blocks or baby steps for my inner self. Could it be that getting my life back in shape radiating from food and exercise outwards will enable me to tackle the relationships in my life that are not working, to make the other courageous changes that seem to hover about me?
Sunday, February 28, 2010
Yesterday was my one month Sparkversary! My life has changed in the most amazing ways in just a month. Ten pounds GONE An equivalent match food donation is going to Second Harvest Food Bank, and I'm HAPPY to do it! I got that idea from Canned Fat Drive team and I love it. The idea of a two-for-one has always appealed to me. I've also lost about 5.5 inches, probably more because I have not been measuring everything.
But there are MORE numbers: 643 fitness minutes! And I know that's underreported because I don't know how to track everything. Today alone was a 40 minute walk on the baylands, which was fabulous! A gorgeous blue sky day, cool breeze, dry path (I hate mud and it has been rainy). I have been doing all of my exercise myself, so it was a treat to walk with my partner. We saw a pair of huge brown jackrabbits, a couple of cranes or egrets, lots of geese (both flying overhead and in the water), a pair of unidentified hawks and, glorious, a redtail hawk!
We walked in one direction until my lower back started to object. Then we turned around and walked back to the car. I was still in great shape when we reached the gate. The last time we did that walk, I was practically crawling by the time we were in sight of the gate, so I was really pleased. Then we went shopping and I did my usual park-in-the-far-end of the parking lot and walked all over the place. I was walking faster than he was - and he is at least a foot taller than I am!
As we walked, I shared a deepening realization - Diet is no longer a good word in my vocabulary. This is a life change for me. If it were a diet, I would be deprived, negative and planning on going back to the old habits. Not so! I have not arrived, I have a long way to go, but I am not longer impatiently straining to reach the end.
Thanks to the enrichment and participation of my new SparkFriends and the education on the site and in the community, I've stuck with it and am developing the tools I need (both in resources and internally) so that this does become a lifestyle and not just another passing attempt.
More than that, with my SparkFriends connection, I am able to tap into the reservoir of humanity that has been stifled. I am able to reach out when I need to and also able to (hopefully) share some of the sunshine and encouragement that I have received. My heart is softened and grows with each new SparkFriend.
I am humbled by their lives, encouraged by their accomplishment and inspired by their stories. Their example keeps me going when I think I cannot possibly face one more minute of exercise, another glass of water or find the energy to plan a healthy meal.
Realistically, this journey is not a straight line. I cannot expect that every week or every month will be like these have been. I will hit plateaus, I may have days when I don't make the best decisions, I may even gain weight. I expect there will be days of soreness when I don't exercise, but none of that will make me throw in the towel.
My days of couch potato, of living as a spectator, of choosing the easiest or shortest route are ending. Just as I love to go to work because I can't wait to see what happens next, I can't wait to see what's around the bend on this journey! It won't end when I reach my goal weight, this journey does not end until I stop breathing. It is no longer about what the scale says, what the clothing tag is. Those metrics are important, but they no longer define me.
Let's see what the next 30 days bring!
Saturday, February 27, 2010
My friend in HI is on high ground and doesn't have to evacuate in preparation for the tsunami. My friend's family in Chile is safe, as far as we know. My brother in Japan is not yet having to do anything in preparation for a tsunami. That changes today's perspective, for certain.
But I have a lot to do:
reorganize the pantry
walking / explore exercises with resistence bands
possible purchase of running shoes
study for school next week
I am really looking forward to weighing and measuring tomorrow....
Saturday, February 27, 2010
After spending a couple of days studying the online menu for dinner tonight with my friend, eating very conservatively all day "just in case", I was still stumped because I was missing two bits of information: the nutritional information did not capture protein and I don't know exactly what "fat"means in the nutritional tracker on SP. Is it just Trans, Saturated, Mono, or a combination?
So I prepared myself and had a couple of ideas picked out before we got there. Oh, surprise! The menu at the restaurant did not match the menu online. I ended up having salmon (grilled) and had them hold the butter-lemon glaze, the veggies were supposed to be steamed, but I think they were sauted, the rice was supposed to be wild, but was white. A green side salad with a really yummy dressing on the side, which I hardly touched.
Feeling virtuous, I logged everything in when I got home and now understand why I feel hungry! I am still way under in every category. Time for a "fourth meal", but not as advertised.
But - I didn't give up and just order anything. I didn't go over because that would have been easy, I am proud of my preparation. I think that helped me make a good choice even with the menu curveball.
I felt very sore, stiff and unable to move all day. I walked around the office throughout the day, but did not burn a lot of time or calories doing so, so I did not log it in. Tomorrow is a new day and I will move!
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