Saturday, January 15, 2011
My fun plans were cancelled and I decided today would be a great day to take a nice long walk and do some strength training. But, when I woke up this morning, my body said today would be a great day of rest. I still feel pretty run over with this cold that won't end!
My appetite is returning and I have been surprised to stay within range today...
But the best news of the day was seeing a blog from Jhadzhia! Her surgery is over and now the long recovery begins. She's in a lot of pain and discomfort, but she's still trying to get her minutes in! I was beyond thrilled to see her blog!
Friday, January 14, 2011
Take 2 With Your Biggest Meal of the Day…This was the first instruction on a bottle of some sort of appetite suppressant. I almost started laughing. Now, my 3 main meals are roughly the same in terms of nutritional value. My two snacks are much smaller. Seeing the bottle got me thinking about then and now.
Even before I started on SP nearly a year ago, I knew that there were no pills, topical products, exercise gadgets or any other make-me-thin-soon quick fixes that could undo years of mindless eating and a couch potato lifestyle. But my heart sure hoped that the latest hype would turn out to be true. I wish I had the money I wasted on that fruitless search!
I experienced limited success with some of the bonafide diet programs out there. I left one program when the leader presented the program as the only way to lose weight. It came across as “preachy”, as if this were a religion. I had great success on another plan put out by a nationally known writer but that ended badly. I had about 25 or 15 pounds left to lose when my father died. I lost my focus. A few months later, I was laid off and, not only did I not have that job, but I did not have the four-mile a day walk that went with it. The pounds came back and then some.
On January 27, I will celebrate my 1 year SparkVersary. I am at the tail end of a terrible cold and have lost 5 pounds in less than 2 weeks. Of course, I expect some of that to come back because I had zero appetite during the peak of the cold. Thinking about that, bracing myself for the scale, made me realize that, much as I really want to lose the rest of this tonnage, I am actually afraid of losing it too fast.
On thinking about past failures and in almost holding my breath over present success, I realize something new about this journey. I don’t want to reach my goal too soon because I am still learning the life skills I need in order to maintain and to continue the success. I have not developed the habits of exercise that I need. I am still learning to make choices with food, not so much for the daily routines, but for those times when I am tired, stressed, in a celebratory environment or whatever.
I really am ok with the idea that it may take another year plus for me to lose the balance. I am 2/10ths away from having lost 30 pounds and would dearly love to achieve that (and have it stick) by my SparkVersary! But, the bigger picture is also true. This has to be a year of lifestyle integration of the exercise and food choices and nonfood coping mechanisms that I touched on during my first year with SparkPeople.
The prospect of reaching this milestone has given me a new Spark in my step. If I ever had the chance to meet Chris Downie, I would be hard-pressed to limit my contact to a polite handshake. I would want to give him a huge hug and wax on effusively about how SparkPeople has changed my life, perhaps even saved it. My life is changing in all the ways I knew it needed to. I just never could do it by myself. I would dearly love to meet my SparkFriends and give them the same hug! I have proved I could not change my life solo; I needed my Spark Community to get this far. I know I will need all of you for the rest of the journey as well. Thank you, in advance, for being part of my life and my Spark Journey!
Thursday, January 13, 2011
I know I will miss Miss Wrisley for the rest of my life. I called her that for many years and, as our friendship deepened, she asked me to call her by her nickname Winnie (short for Winifred, the only woman I've ever known with that name).
I sing songs in the shower and during my drive to work. These are songs that I learned from her. I could not sing today, my throat and heart are too full of tears. That does not diminish my confidence that she is making music with the angels, but another piece of my heart is gone.
The cold is not completely gone, but my energy and appetite are returning. A total of 49 minutes walking time today, eight different strength training exercises, on target for water and mostly on target for food.
Thank you, precious SparkFriends, for your comments and spark goodies. I cannot adequately express the depth of my grief, but I sense your compassion and am both deeply touched and profoundly grateful.
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
I am heartbroken, devastated and beyond tears. I learned today that Miss Wrisley died in November. I had known her for nearly 40 years. She taught music at the boarding school and when we met, I was an immature teen in great need. She taught me how to sing and to play several instruments and the music room became my refuge. We talked, walked and sang together.
Even these many years later, we wrote letters and traded cards, always about music and always with love. I lack the words to express the profound difference she made in my life. There are teachers who make a difference, whose influence is such that the student becomes a different and better person than they would have otherwise become.
Knowing she is in heaven singing with the angels is of little comfort tonight, but I will find comfort in that thought some time in the future.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
I joined the 28 day challenge with high hopes and great ambition only to be laid low by the worst cold I have had in 3 years. I have yet to do one day of the video exercises or much else on the challenge. In the past, that would have been enough for me to give up. I would have said all kinds of unkind things to myself, things that I would not say to someone else or allow someone to say to themselves. The cold was made worse by a drug interaction and it will be a few more days before I get back into my full routine.
My wonderful SparkFriend Chaotickitty has been in a small funk since Christmas and her birthday. She has been far more disciplined or strict about her food intake than I have. To my way of thinking, perhaps too strict, but we each have to walk our own journey, so it would be wrong for me to judge her. She has been ready to throw in the towel both because of holidays, birthday, food in the house, a spouse who is not as strict with his food and she has had what sounds like just the same cold as I have had. In an attempt to encourage her, I posted a comment on her blog saying that perfection is not the goal, but progress is.
Striving for perfection is often admired in others. Too often, the pursuit of perfection becomes warped. Just as our sense of food portions gets distorted, so too striving for perfection leads us astray. Eventually, the perfection of the thing - whether it's being the best diver, the best writer, the best whatever is replaced with perfection of the process and the goal becomes elusive and unattainable. If not recalibrated, the true talents never reach their highest ability and that best seller never gets written, the promising athlete never reaches Olympic glory...
In my attempt to help Chaotickitty, I had to think about the role perfection has played in my life. This is not the forum to delve into events of childhoold, but suffice to say that if perfection was not achieved, the task was not worth doing - at least that is what I learned.
There was no point in learning how to do physical things because, with my handicap, they could never be done perfectly. There was no point in learning to do math because girls were not supposed to be good at it. But what does this have to do with my SP journey?
It means that I do not have to lose pounds as quickly as anyone else. I do not have to run marathons like everyone else. But it means I must figure out what my parameters really should be. It also means I need to push the boundaries that have been there all my life - test them to see if they really are valid or if they need to be reset. It means I need to know myself better than I presently do. I need to challenge my body, my heart, my mind. Exactly of what am I capable?
I will take up running again, I will continue to walk and I will work on strength training. I will continue the good eating and the water intake. And if there are days when I spike in carbs or calories, that does not mean I have failed. All it means is that life happens. The journey is part of the success and, as long as I have more days when I follow this path than not, progress continues. It is not all or nothing. It is an evolution from a couch potato, inactive unhealthy life to one full of energy, health and vibrancy.
I am not saying this well, but it is not any better to change slavery to sugar and fat to slavery to the numbers on a scale or calories. Life is richer and fuller than that and I aim to claim my piece of it!
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