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Dusting Myself Off

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Today is the one-year anniversary of when I started back on SP. When I stepped on the scale this morning, I found that I weigh 17 pounds less than what I weighed a year ago.

This made me sad for so many reasons. For one, at the lowest weight that I was over the past 12 months, I had lost 46.5 pounds. For another, I have been slowly losing ground since last November. The habits that I adhered to initially went out the window for one reason or another and the weight has been creeping back on.

But then I came across an article on the US News & World Report website that I really needed to see today -- The No. 1 Skill for Weight Management

It said:

"...the most important skill in weight management is learning how to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and get back on with it. Whether it's the predictable—holidays, birthdays, anniversaries or vacations—or the unpredictable—illness, death, marital discord or injury—life has a bad habit of getting in the way of our best intentions. And mark my words, you're going to fall down."

I had been expecting that it was going to talk about tracking food or exercising regularly, and I was fully ready to chastise myself of failing so miserably on both of those fronts for so long. But picking myself up is the most important?

And it slowly dawned on me that, yes, that is true. Life has a knack for getting in the way, whether the event is planned or not. How long you are out of your rhythm depends on how long you let the disruption go on and how quickly you pick yourself up and get back to what needs to be done.

In my case, I got off-track and didn't pick myself up for eight months. That's an awful long time to let myself stay down.

Instead of letting that knowledge get the best of me and continue to keep me down, I walked a mile with Leslie Sansone this morning. Then I tracked my food for the day and did better than I have in quite a while with accounting for everything. Then I went grocery shopping to fill the house with healthy options. And tonight, I walked about a half hour again with some ladies from church.

So for today, I picked myself up. It's a step in the right direction.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HEYITSLISA 7/9/2013 11:48AM

    Every day is a chance to pick yourself up and dust yourself off, thank goodness! And the best part? There is no limit on do-overs! emoticon

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NYARAMULA 7/9/2013 6:52AM


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PINKYYSUEE 7/9/2013 2:53AM

    Totally true! I loved what you said,"How long you are out of your rhythm depends on how long you let the disruption go on and how quickly you pick yourself up and get back to what needs to be done."

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PINKEUROGIRL 7/9/2013 12:53AM

    You can do it!!

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_BABE_ 7/9/2013 12:29AM

    Well I am the poster child for picking myself up... glad to see its a handy attribute. We'll both get where we want to go... emoticon

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WMAYFIELD 7/9/2013 12:28AM

    Thanks for sharing this. I think you are right (and so is that article). We want to always be consistent and never have setbacks, but life is not that way. I'm struggling with two weeks of set backs and your post helped me a lot. I'm also worried about going on vacation to visit my mother who overeats for recreation and I tend to join in. I want to have fun, but don't want to lose too much ground! I'd love to hear more about how you are doing.

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ZRIE014 7/9/2013 12:15AM

  keep it up

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Long time in coming...

Monday, May 06, 2013

I knew this day was coming. I had been thinking about it and planning for it. Getting on the scale this morning confirmed it.

This is the day I stop being a whiner and start taking responsibility.

I get that the past six months have been more stressful than usual (hence my absence on SP). My husband has been in his final semester of school and working overtime, which threw my routine out of whack. I fell into bad habits of going on 5 hours of sleep a night, not planning meals, and putting everyone else's needs before my own. I've been feeling like a hamster on a wheel -- frantically running, but not really making any progress. But, you know, everyone has stressors in life. They can't be used to absolve oneself of responsibility.

I'm glad that I am still 24 lbs down from my highest weight when I started up seriously with SP last July, but the reality is that I am 22.5 lbs higher than the lowest I had gotten using SP. Not a good thing.

Like I said earlier, I knew this day was coming. I have been feeling increasingly sluggish and out of control. I knew why it was happening -- functioning on auto-pilot never bears good results. That was a (stupid) choice I elected to make, and the consequences have been clear.

Could I have done things differently? Of course. Undoubtedly, there are others who have endured far more stressful situations than I did and are more successful at staying the course. That's not to say that I am comparing myself to others (because we know how pointless that is), but I refuse to make allowances for the choices I have made over the past six months.

So this is the plan of action thus far:

1. Retake control of the meal planning and grocery shopping. My husband has tried to share responsibility for these activities because he doesn't want it to all fall on me, but it just doesn't work. Meal decisions start happening haphazardly, food that wasn't on the grocery list somehow makes it into the house, and going out to eat happens more often. Cutting off the possibility of this happening is the first step.

2. Track my food. I had gotten lazy about this, I'll admit. But I know that tracking is a good thing because I'm able to objectively see what I've had and what I should have for the rest of the day to ensure that my eating is balanced and within my calorie limits.

3. Exercise. Another thing I have gotten lazy about. There really is no excuse. I have all the resources I need to do things right in my own house. I simply let inertia win. I'm also planning to enlist my daughter in motivating me to move (a role she'll be eager to take on since she is a skinny thing with tons of energy!)

4. Sleep! Burning the midnight oil doesn't do me any favors. Getting more sleep will allow me to be more efficient with everything I do during the day. One way I am working to combat the "Just one more thing" temptation is to have daily to-do lists. When I think of something, instead of rushing to do it, I put it on the to-do list for the next day. It can wait.

I re-read the saying on my Sparkpage wallpaper, and I want to include it here since you can't read it with everything covering it:

STOP making up excuses.
STOP saying that you'll do it tomorrow.
STOP believing it will happen by itself.
BEGIN working out today.
BEGIN eating healthy today.
BEGIN your life change now.
and be proud tomorrow.

I want to be proud tomorrow.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DAUGHTEROFTWIN 6/11/2013 10:33AM

    Melissa, this is a wonderful turning point for you. I know how easy it is to let our circumstances absolve us of our responsibility to ourselves. It isn't anything we can entrust to anyone else. No one is going to make sure we take care of ourselves but us. I'm still struggling to get my horse under control. It seems to be running out of control at a gallop still. Luckily, the habits I formed over the past year and a half have kept me generally within my own lane, instead of diving head first off the precipice. Remember, those small steps that seem like they don't make much difference are the key to the whole shebang.

Glad to see you're back!

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BOOKWORM27S 5/17/2013 8:55AM

    Good luck in your weight loss journey!

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HEYITSLISA 5/7/2013 11:34AM

    Yay! Welcome back!!

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GRACEANNE46 5/7/2013 12:43AM

    I always like to read that someone is getting back on track. This is a long journey for most of us and we continue to learn about ourselves.

My favorite saying is "fall seven times, get up eight"

My other favorite saying is "never, never, never give up"


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_BABE_ 5/6/2013 1:15PM

    Been there. Over Xmas I regained 20 pounds I wanted gone forever. Good news it will come off too and we are here for you!

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 5/6/2013 12:41PM

    It happens, but it sounds like you have a great plan to recover. You can do this!

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KENDRACARROLL 5/6/2013 12:26PM

    Happy you're back!
You can make it happen!

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CHIHUAHUAMOM2 5/6/2013 11:11AM

  Good for you!!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Results from Weeks 19 and 20, and Remembering Zig Zigler

Friday, November 30, 2012

So the holiday season is upon us, kicked off with a few days with the family over Thanksgiving. My weight went up about 3-4 lbs. That was actually a small success in my book because it usually is much worse than that. But, getting back on track food-wise has been pretty good this week. I need to get more consistent with exercising, though...

I read in the news headlines that motivational speaker Zig Ziglar passed away yesterday. Such a tremendous loss :(

A couple of his quotes really hit home with my efforts to improve my health. One I posted as my status update:

“Regardless of what you are doing, if you pump long enough, hard enough, and enthusiastically enough, sooner or later the effort will bring forth the reward.”

It just served as a good reminder that this is not a short-term activity. I need to keep pushing, to remember that this is not a race, and to think about the results (both scale and NSV) I am experiencing and have yet to experience.

The other one I like, partly because the visual makes me smile:

"I'm so optimistic I'd go after Moby Dick in a row boat and take the tartar sauce with me."

How many of us bring that same optimism with us on our journeys to health? Or are we telling ourselves that we will “try” to make it work?

Especially if this is not the first go-around at losing weight or if you’ve never been thin, it can feel like an impossible dream. I am oftentimes my own worst critic, so, yes, I have had many thoughts of, “Can this really happen for me, too?”

The above quote helps to kick out the messages that would drag me down. Instead of being my own worst enemy with negative thinking, I need to think and act as if success is a foregone conclusion. To do anything less is to invite in self-doubt, and that has no place in my life.

What is your favorite quote to counteract thinking that could derail your efforts?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DAUGHTEROFTWIN 11/30/2012 11:44AM

    I know this sounds silly, but I saw Legend of Bagger Vance for the first time about 4 months ago. There was a certain scene when the main character had gotten way off course in his golf game and the dialogue "spoke" to me. It was about so much more than a golf game. This is the dialogue:

Bagger Vance: What I'm talkin about is a game... A game that can't be won only played...
Rannulph Junuh: You don't understand...
Bagger Vance: I don't need to understand... Ain't a soul on this entire earth ain't got a burden to carry he don't understand, you ain't alone in that... But you been carryin' this one long enough... Time to go on... lay it down...
Rannulph Junuh: I don't know how...
Bagger Vance: You got a choice... You can stop... Or you can start...
Rannulph Junuh: Start?
Bagger Vance: Walkin...
Rannulph Junuh: Where?
Bagger Vance: Right back to where you always been... and then stand there... Still... real still... And remember...
Rannulph Junuh: It's too long ago...
Bagger Vance: Oh no sir it was just a moment ago... Time for you to come on out the shadows Junuh... Time for you to choose...

I try to remember this when I'm feeling like I've gone too far off track to "recover."

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KENDRACARROLL 11/30/2012 10:48AM

    I found this quote a couple of days ago:
"Every challenge you encounter in life is a fork in the road. You have the choice to choose which way to go - backward, forward, breakdown or breakthrough.” Ifeanyi Enoch Onuoha


Comment edited on: 11/30/2012 10:49:18 AM

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HEYITSLISA 11/30/2012 9:01AM

    "No matter how slow you go you're still lapping everyone on the couch"

Reminds me that this isn't a sprint it's a marathon. I am confident I can reach my goal, it's just the "when" that isn't concrete in my mind. It'll happen, maybe not as quickly as I'd like, but it will happen. emoticon

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MR.NET1 11/30/2012 1:31AM


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Results from Week 18 and Envisioning Success

Saturday, November 17, 2012

I am feeling back on track (just in time for Thanksgiving, fortunately!) I had a great weight loss at my last weigh-in that made up for the increase the week before, so I have lost a total of 43 lbs so far emoticon A big part of that came from the video suggestions by HEYITSLISA (thank you! emoticon) It's great to have something more in the bag o' exercise tricks!

On the blog that I write as a career consultant and resume writer, I did a post about guided imagery as a way to achieve success. Basically, the premise is that guided imagery works better than affirmations. Affirmations just scratch at the surface, trying to convince you that you are good enough. Guided imagery, on the other hand, helps you in a couple ways: 1) you are able to go through a "dress rehearsal" of what you are trying to achieve, and 2) you are engaging all of your senses so you actually feel the success that you practice in your mind.

I've been thinking about how guided imagery can be used to envision my success with weight loss. At first, I was hitting a brick wall because I was trying to see what I would be like at maintenance. The problem is, I have never been that thin, and I couldn't picture what the "end result" would be like for me.

Then it came to me. Instead of envisioning myself at maintenance, I need to be doing guided imagery of the process. Making healthy food choices, exercising, dealing with temptations, keeping things in balance -- those are the things I should be thinking about! And it's easy to picture myself doing them since they are a part of my everyday life.

Another benefit to doing a dress rehearsal of success in the process is that it helps to build a foundation for sustained success over the long term. It's not picturing myself being thin that will help me keep this healthy lifestyle going for me. Rather, it's making good choices day in and day out. Having a good model in my head for how to do that will make it even easier to execute it more consistently in real life.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KENDRACARROLL 11/17/2012 6:49PM

    Congratulations on your continued success.
Yes, ultimately it's about healthy and weight loss is a direct result of making healthier choices. Sounds like you're on the right track.

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FATBASTICH 11/17/2012 1:11PM

    You're doing great! Keep it up!

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HEYITSLISA 11/17/2012 9:18AM

    People look at me incredulously when I say I don't have a goal weight. I mean, I know what weight I need to be at for a healthy BMI, but having been 20 years old the last time I was at that weight it's hard for me to remember. Even then I didn't stay there for more than a year. So I know what you're saying. I can't PICTURE being at my goal weight. I don't know what that will be like so I just don't allow myself to think about it. Right now I just think about every food choice, every chance to get some exercise, and getting under 200 lbs. That's as far as my mind will go, and I think that is perfectly ok!!

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RADAMS0408 11/17/2012 9:06AM

    Love this!!!! Being "thin" was not my goal when I started this program 1.5 years ago. I literally just wanted to feel better. I was abusing my body and I felt it. I truly believe that my success so far has been because of the healthy decisions I have been making day to day to FEEL BETTER and the weight coming off as a result is a definate added bonus. I guess my point is that, in my opinion, this should be about HEALTH and not skinny vs. fat. In the end, the result will likely be the same (weight loss), but you will sustain it better with this healthier frame of mind.

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HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 11/17/2012 6:51AM

    Congrats on the weight loss, you're doing great! I think the guided imagery sounds like a great idea. I've never been thin either, so picturing myself at goal is impossible, but I CAN see myself exercising and making goof food choices. Thanks for the info!

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Weeks 16 & 17 -- The Lost Weeks

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The past couple weeks have been a blur. It all started on October 25 since my kids were off from school for two days (nothing much is accomplished when they have off).

On October 28, we went out for a fun afternoon of trick-or-treating as a family, which completely wore them out. A few hours after putting them to bed, I heard my daughter call to me, "Mommy? My throat hurts." I took her temperature, and it was 102. Dang. I gave her some honey for her throat and ibuprofen for her fever. Hopefully, it would just be a temporary reaction to running hard that day.

Of course, it wasn't that simple. She was out of school four days with a double ear infection. Finally, on Friday, she got to go to school.

But then, it was a three-day weekend due to parent-teacher conferences. That ended up being a good thing for her because being sick for so long really took a toll on my daughter. Not so good for me because I wasn't able to get much done and there was Halloween candy in the house. I had smartly filled a Ziploc bag with various goodies for my husband to take to the team he supervises at work the day after trick-or-treating, but there was still a lot left. And the stress of having my week knocked off-kilter showed in my cravings for candy and on my number on the scale. emoticon

On top of that, my exercise routine (which has consisted primarily of walking) was thrown out of whack because my left knee was starting to hurt and I could feel the beginnings of plantar fasciitis on my right foot. So no more walking for a time...

I knew this week was going to be crazy, as well, because of a three-day online conference that I was participating in, but I was determined to get back on track since I knew what was coming. I tracked better, made sure my water intake was up, and started a new strength training routine. My knee is feeling better, and the stretches I am doing every morning are helping my foot a bit (though, with past bouts of plantar fasciitis, I know it can take a few months to fully heal). Still, it's been a good week compared to last week!

The goal for this week is to find another cardio activity to replace the walking. I am bummed about walking not working out for the time being. I was able to couple that activity with talking on the phone -- not only did the time fly when I walked, but I was multitasking! I know there are resources on SP that will offer good alternatives, and I will take the time this week to figure it all out so that I can be a bit more prepared for the insanity of Thanksgiving :)

Hope you all are doing well!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HOLLYS_NEW_LIFE 11/11/2012 9:25AM

    I hope you daughter is feeling better, it's so hard when you have a sick little one. This journey is hard enough, but then when your routine gets thrown off, it's even harder. I hope you find an alternative to cardio that you like!

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KENDRACARROLL 11/10/2012 11:11PM

    When I first started exercising after being completely inactive for about 20 years I had a serious bout with plantar fasciitis. It took many months and was extremely painful. Eventually it healed itself out and thankfully has not returned.

It's always tough when the kids get sick. Upsets all your plans and routine in a heartbeat. Don't worry about the lost weeks; they're gone anyway...


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DAUGHTEROFTWIN 11/10/2012 10:33PM

    What a couple of weeks! I hope your daughter has recovered.

When my knee had issues a while ago, I adopted some chair aerobics (Spark videos online and YouTube). They didn't get my heart rate up as much, but I felt like I was doing SOMETHING toward my goals. I don't know what supplements you take, but you might consider glucosamine chondroitin with hyalauronic acid and a separate dose of MSM. I have had to tinker with the amounts over time and take more than the recommended dosage. I feel they have reduced my problems with PF, knee osteoarthritis, and sciatica. And of course exercise has helped strengthen the surrounding muscles. When I first started walking on the treadmill, I had to maintain hold of the handlebars because of knee instability (no matter the speed). I no longer have to do that.

I hope you heal fast. Focus on today today and tomorrow tomorrow.

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_BABE_ 11/10/2012 5:59PM

    I think when we feel our routine is disrupted that it all goes out the window but I think some good behaviours become automatic and its important to just get back on track as soon as possible.

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HEYITSLISA 11/10/2012 5:51PM

    It ok to get thrown off for a while; life does happen! The important part is that you've dusted yourself off climbed back on the horse!

My suggestions for alternate cardio:

it also includes lower body toning. I think it's super fun and do it at least once a week!

a little bit more intense but just remember: no such thing as perfect! Just follow along the best you can.

and always a good standby:

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