Friday, December 19, 2014
Looks like when I get back from visiting my family for the holidays, I'll be headed to the thrift store! Time to trade in some old jeans for some smaller ones! :)
I've tried not to think much about clothing size day to day. I'm losing weight for my health and to feel better, so I don't want to obsess over my clothes just yet.
Of course, as inspiration I have hanging in my closet a bag from a local dress boutique, and there's the distant dream of fitting into one of those cute dresses. I even have a friend who said when I reach my goal weight, she will buy me one of those dresses!
But that's in the distant future. Day to day, I figured I'd just know when I need to trade in my clothes. And I was right. It's become pretty obvious!
I was running around playing games yesterday during my mentoring time at the elementary school, and I realized that if I'm going to keep running around like that (yay for energy!!!) I can't wear the size 20 jeans anymore. I kept having to pull up the waist!
So I went through my closet, which contains an assortment of jeans ranging from size 16 petite to 20. The 20s - way too big. The 18s - comfy but very loose and baggy. The 16s, which used to be really tight, are now not only comfortable, but actually a little loose and baggy. I'm not ready for a 14 yet, but it's time to trade the 18s and 20s in for some more 16s.
I love our local thrift store because it supports our addiction regeneration center, where I'm also a volunteer. But now I also love it because it's an inexpensive way for me to gradually size down my clothes.
So ... first post-holiday stop ... thrift store and new jeans!!!
Thursday, December 18, 2014
I walked 6 miles today. First time in many, many years. Feels amazing.
In addition to trying to lose 80 pounds (21 down so far), I'm training for the Susan G. Komen 60-mile walk in Oct. 2015. The last time I did that amazing event was Oct. 2005. I haven't felt this great since then! It's amazing to be back in this zone again.
I thought I'd kick up my training around April, and for now was content just to build a solid base of 4 miles a day. Well, today I guess I was feeling great and my body felt like doing more. It was hard to stop. I wanted to do 7 miles and felt like I could, but it was getting dark and the park closes at sunset. I guess knowing when to stop is part of the deal.
Of course, now the blisters are starting. I remember them well from my days of training 10 years ago. Stopped at Rite Aid on the way home. :) I guess it was inevitable. However, at the moment I don't mind the blisters. It just feels good to be back in the zone.
Tomorrow maybe I'll say a few "ouches" and by next week might be wishing the blisters would go away. But for tonight, I'm content ... blisters and all. I haven't felt this awesome in a long time.
Thursday, December 18, 2014
I weighed in at 175 this morning! That's a big deal for me, for several reasons.
Four years ago, 175 was my highest weight (not all-time high, but ever since my first round of weight loss), and it was the weight where I said, "I feel uncomfortable and want to change this." I spent three months (Jan-Mar) dropping down to 160. Then life happened and my weight began to creep back up as high as 196 (all-time high). So I've kept 175 in mind as a milestone. And that day has finally arrived! Not only does this mean the next target of 160 is in focus now, but I'm also taking the time to just celebrate that I'm back down to 175. Yayyy!!!
It also means I'm 1/4 of the way to my ultimate goal of losing 80 pounds and what should be my normal healthy weight. That's another reason to celebrate this milestone.
I was surprised to show a 2 pound weight loss this week. I've been eating within my calorie range but at the top end of the range. It makes sense, because I'm burning a lot of calories through cardio and strength training, and I've been really consistent with that. I've tried the middle and low end of the range and I'm just not comfortable - feel literally hungry, weak, etc. I just need more. I wondered how that would affect my weight loss but it seems that I'm still losing.
So I really do need to listen to my body. I know if I don't eat enough, not only will I not feel well and not be healthy, but I also won't be able to do the fitness minutes I enjoy. I keep reminding myself that as long as I'm making good food choices, I'm feeding my body what it needs to engage in those fitness minutes that I love so much.
I remember one doctor who told me that if I were going to lose weight, I'd have to stay at the bottom of my calorie range. But she was taking into account doing no more than 30 minutes of light fitness 3 days a week. I enjoy doing much more than that, so I guess that's at least part of why I can't seem to eat at the lower end of that range.
And the bottom line is I'm feeling a lot better, and stronger, and more energetic, and healthier ... those are huge benefits as well as the weight loss, and all of that encourages me to keep doing what I've been doing.
It's been crazy with the holidays around the work place and the school where I volunteer as a mentor. Plates of sweet stuff being brought in, passed around, handed to me - it's like dodging through a pinball machine filled with sugar! But because of ALL the support I've gotten here at SP and among my friends who understand what I'm trying to do, and because of the healthier changes I've been seeing, I keep dodging plates, politely saying, "No, thank you" and subtly making things disappear behind the scenes. I appreciate the hearts of the people who want to share these goodies, but I'm relieved to have dodged them all the way through to my Christmas break. Whew!
Next week I'm going out of town to visit family, but they're all vegan and very health conscious, so I feel like the worst is over! I wouldn't have made it without the support of everyone here at SP. A very big THANK YOU!!! Hope you have a wonderful, healthy holiday and are looking forward to an AWESOME new year!!!!
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
I've been doing great with exercise. That's the good news, and it really is! Back in September I was so out of shape. I had no desire to exercise, even though I used to love it. I got winded walking two blocks. It was all I could do to make the decision (at the urging of two friends) to start walking 10 minutes a day. It's amazing how far I've come in such a short time, and I'm loving it. Committed and don't want to miss!
I wish I could say the same for food, but that's become much more of a struggle. I was doing good for a while, but the last five days have been awful. Granted, I'm not gaining weight; I'm still within the range for maintenance. But I'm not losing weight, and I want to.
I've figured out the biggest problem is the unexpected. Last month my schedule was pretty predictable. It was easy to plan and choose well. This month, not so much. The past five days, my schedule has been filled with the unexpected. I normally eat several meals out every week, but last week and this, I've had a lot more unexpected meals out, and at unexpected times as well. I enjoy eating out with friends - it's more about the company and conversation than the food. But the food has been tripping me up.
If I eat out a couple times a week, I can get away with choosing whatever I feel like from the menu, because the rest of the time I'm eating carefully. But when the number of meals out increases, I can't pick just anything. So I need a plan.
What I did tonight was at least the start of a plan. I'm sure there's more to it, but this is at least a step in the right direction, and should help me feel less frustrated with myself. I looked at the menus of the restaurants I go to most often and made a list on my iPhone of one or two healthy choices at each place. I also listed a few things not to get. I am not into limiting myself; I don't think creating a taboo list is an effective way to change to a healthier lifestyle. But there are some things I eat by habit that I need to be reminded not to do (e.g., tortilla chips with Mexican, fries with a burger, etc.). I also wrote down a reminder to just order water to drink.
The idea is that now, when I go out to eat (whether it's planned or unexpected) I'll look at my list, which I'll have with me on my handy dandy phone, and I'll know exactly what to eat. No confusion, no frustration, no absent-minded mistakes, and the chance to enjoy a good, healthy meal, cooked for me, and in the company of friends. That's a win-win.
This past week has been even crazier because on some days I've had two meals out, and that's not my norm. So I've added a note to my list that when I'm on the second meal out, a side salad is the only option for meal #2.
Again, I don't like putting things off limits, but I'm not looking at this in that way. I'm looking at it more like this is a good, healthy way to enjoy the pleasure and privilege of eating out with friends - by making very specific suggestions so that in the moment, I don't have to think and fight with temptations.
I'd love to hear from others who have struggled with this issue and/or have solutions that work for you!
P.S. The most important thing for me: I had a bad food week, but I didn't give up. I'm trying to work through it and come out better on the other side. For me, that's progress. And that's huge.
Friday, November 28, 2014
I decided to start running again. Slowly but surely. Iíve missed it!
Over the past month of choosing to be intentional about exercise, starting to train for distance walking again, etc. itís occurred to me that what I really want to do is run again. I just wasnít sure I could.
Iíve always loved running Ė ever since I was two, or so Iím told. In 6th grade I discovered track, long jump and hurdles. Loved it! Hurdled everything in sight, on the track or off. But in 7th grade I hit a snag Ė I started horseback riding and the pressure on my knees hurt when I ran. My doctor sidelined me for a year. Then I started again Ė not for competition, just for fun. Kept that up through my late 20s and then I started having health problems, so I quit for a while. Started again in my late 30s. Then my life took a nosedive and I quit (again). Quitting was the last thing I shouldíve done at that point, but thatís the reality.
So it seems I pick it up at the end of every decade! Now in my late 40s, itís the perfect time to start again. However, Iíve been concerned about wear and tear on my knees. I kept thinking Iíd put it off till I lost more weight. But the desire was too great. What I realized was that these are the same knees Iíve always had Ė theyíve never been perfect, but theyíve never been a disaster either. Every time Iíve had knee trouble Ė sprains, strains, etc. Ė Iíve always recovered. Iíve mountain climbed, cycled, lived upstairs, tripped and fallen, traveled the world, and done just about everything with these knees, and they are still hanging in there. So why should I put off running, when that is the desire of my heart, and I miss it!
So today, I bit the bullet, braved Black Friday madness, and bought a pair of running shoes (2/3 off!) at the outlet mall. They feel amazing Ė probably best pair of shoes Iíve ever worn. And I went to the park. Started slowly Ė 20 minute warmup walk, 30 minutes off/on jog/walk (1 minute on, 2 off), and another 20 minute cool down walk. It felt amazing. And my knees? They are very happy. (They told me so!)
Will be interesting to see how my body feels tomorrow, but hey, thereís a lot of history there. Itís not like my body should wonder, ďWhat in the world is this?Ē Itís more like, ďAwesome. Weíre running again.Ē Tomorrow Iíll just walk. Gonna take it slow but steady. And go from there.
While I know I have to ease in, and start from where Iím at, be realistic and careful, Iím glad I didnít stay psyched out any longer. I love running, and Iíve run with this body off and on my whole life. Thereís no reason I canít do it now.
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