Monday, September 15, 2014
This weekend, I went to visit my grandparents on the farm. It's not a producing farm, anymore, but there are still any number of chores that they need my help with. From helping care for the horses, tending the garden, and learning to dig holes to replace old fence posts, I was very busy! I had a wonderful time working outside, hiking, and spending quality time with my grandparents.
I've noticed that my workouts have become a bit stale. I usually head to the gym to walk on the treadmill for a while, walk to class, and do some yoga. Maybe it's time to change things a bit. I love hiking, but I haven't done much of it lately. So, on weekends, I'm going hiking! I have a state park less than twenty minutes from my house, and forty wooded acres on my grandparents farm to explore. Maybe I won't be hiking every day, but I'm sure my body would like a bit of a challenge.
Monday, September 08, 2014
I am loving my life right now. Seriously. I may be overweight, but I refuse to let it slow me down any longer. What a change from a few months ago!
I am taking one more college course, and then I will officially graduate in December. I will then apply to grad school at my current university (so I don't have to move) and try for a Master's in Professional Writing. I love my current course, and am having so much fun with the material.
I'm kind of in-between jobs, so that's kind of stressful, but I'm applying to three different places each week until I hear back from someone. Not giving up!
I've discovered that when I put on make-up, or dress well, I feel an almost tangible boost in my confidence. I see a different, more confident person when I look in the mirror, and other people are seeing the difference, too. My friends have told me that I seem so much happier, and that my posture is much better. I smile more. Several people have even asked me out. Do you know how long it's been since I dated? Five years. I have not dated in five years. I like feeling this way.
I've taken to exploring the downtown portion of my hometown. It was kind of dilapidated until a couple of years ago, but a local group has started revitalizing it, with the help of the city council and local businesses. Now, it's a cute little river-front area, with shops, restaurants, and a river walk. This week, I went to a little yarn store that sell yarn made from the wool of locally-raised alpacas. Then, I went to the flower shop down the street that sell locally-sourced flowers. Around the corner was the river-front farmer's market, where I bought fresh produce and baked goods. A block away, there is a little boutique that sells organic, fair-trade goods, including clothes, chocolate, tea, and coffee. Not to mention, an adorable little coffee shop where they don't use to-go cups. Instead, you sit inside or on the patio, and sip your coffee while talking or people-watching. Downtown is the perfect place to slow down, and take a few moments to just enjoy life.
Tomorrow, I'm going to walk down by the river. Maybe I'll stop at the little mercantile along the walk to buy an ice cream.
Basically, I'm taking the time to have fun and take care of myself, and it is making all the difference. I wore out my gym shoes! I have to buy a new pair today, if I want to go to the gym on Wednesday. That makes me feel awesome. I exercised enough over the past year to wear out a pair of shoes!
What have I learned in the past few months! I've learned that I am the one who controls my happiness. My weight doesn't define me; I do. I'm making myself happy right now, and I'll deal with the future when it gets here.
Wednesday, June 04, 2014
I've had a streak of good days, lately. I'm taking care of myself, studying for a couple of incompletes, and spending time with people I love.
It's been a while since I really thought about taking care of myself. For weeks, I simply didn't care. Now, I'm making sure to cook healthy meals for myself, because I'm worth it. I take time out of my day to read a book or go for a walk. Something that makes me feel good. The dog, of course, likes the days when she gets an extra walk. But she doesn't mind curling up on the couch while I read, either!
I have a tendency to isolate myself, so I'm making sure I don't do that! Now that the semester is over, my mom and I have more time to spend together. One day, we took her dog for a walk. (I may never do that again. There was an incident with a dead squirrel and, you know what? I'm stopping there. Shudder.) Another day we cooked dinner and watched old Gilmore Girls episodes. It's been nice. Some of my girl friends and I have gotten together for girls nights. Plus, I'll be throwing a bachelorette party for one of them sometime this summer! I'm so, so happy for her. She and her fiance are two of my closest friends, and they totally deserve this!
Tonight, I'm making a "kitchen sink casserole" of my own creation. Basically, any leftovers that I think would taste good together get cooked in a skillet, covered with a crust, baked in the oven, and turned out on a plate. It's kind of like shepherd's pie. (I got the idea from MaryJanesFarm bakeovers.) Plus, I have all the ingredients for bran muffins, which I've been wanting to make for a week or two. I'm rediscovering my love of cooking, especially cooking with fresh ingredients. I feel better, and the food tastes better!
That doesn't mean I'm a saint in the kitchen, though. I still muck things up. On Sunday, I intended to make veggie paella in the crock pot. Unfortunately, I accidentally added instant rice instead of converted rice. Let's just say it turned out to be really unappetizing. But I can make rice pudding with the rest of the rice!
It's been a good few days, and I suspect my life will only get better from here.
Friday, May 02, 2014
My therapist is helping me a great deal, and I am more capable of tending to everyday life these past few days. I am incredibly lucky to have people around me who understand what I am dealing with, and who are willing to help me through. My family, friends, and even my professors have been extraordinarily kind.
Because I am resuming taking care of myself, I found myself noticing some common mistakes that I make in my weight-loss journey.
First, if it's in the house, I will eat it. Last night, I binged on Oreos. I regretted it later, but it felt satisfying in the moments. So, I'm throwing out the package. I started to rationalize keeping them, because I paid for them, but I caught myself in time. The Oreos are going to a friend's house. What did I learn from this? I learned that if I don't want to find myself eating it, I shouldn't buy it in the first place. The next time I'm in the grocery store, and I find myself thinking, "But I'll only have one serving a couple of times a week," I'll remind myself that I'm still working on learning self control, and that I can wait a few months to buy more snack foods.
I also tend to think in "either/or" terms. If I go over on calories, or feel too achy and tired to exercise, I start to think that I'm a horrible person. I realize this is an irrational thought, but I often find myself internalizing the negativity without realizing it. My new goal is to catch myself when I start thinking bad thoughts about myself. Once I learn to notice the thoughts, I can turn them around.
I used to think that I had to be perfectly in control in order to succeed. I know better, now. In the last two months, I've lost two pounds. I used to think that if I didn't lose a pound a week, I was doing something wrong, but I've learned to be grateful for the small progressions. I'm not perfect; no one is. So, I will simply continue to work hard. If I slip up, I won't beat myself up for it. Because you know what? It happens. It happens to everyone at some point. I'm not alone. I'm not stupid, or lazy.
I'm human, and I will continue to make mistakes. But I can learn from them.
Saturday, April 19, 2014
Lately, it's been difficult to focus on weight loss, because so many other things are happening. I'm graduating with my Bachelor of Science in a month, but I'm not happy about it. I don't deal well with change, and this one has thrown me back into a cycle of depression. I have sought out a counselor, and am working to get better, but it's slow going.
This, of course, has taken its toll on my motivation, my energy, and my routines. I have not been working out regularly, or eating well. I'm slowly getting my motivation back, so I'm cooking a few healthy meals this weekend to get me through the week. I may have to call a friend who can kick my butt until I go to the gym. If all else fails, I will remember to be kind to myself and snuggle the puppy.
That's the wonderful thing about having a dog. Your dog loves you even when you can't love yourself. My dog thinks that I am beautiful and wonderful, and that I am the best mommy ever, even if all I manage to do that day is feed her and take her for a quick walk around the block. I could make a complete mess of things, and she would still love me because I pet her and hug her.
I'll get better. I always do. I just hate that I let myself fall back into this cycle of self-hatred and fear that I thought I'd escaped from permanently.
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