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Big Eater, Big Talker

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

I think I eat and talk a lot and like to use my mouth for a whole lot of other reasons. This being said, eating is a wonderful diversion.

Yesterday I had fun in my house, where I pretended my house was the grocery store and I was the customer who bought and consumed everything it had: buttered popcorn, oreos, walnuts, sausage, eggs, cheese, etc... But I tracked my calories so I could see how much damage I had done so damage was not complete. After all, I have met one of my short term goals--or is it long term? which is to track everything, even when I cheat. So I did that.

This means that I did not fall down on the job! Why not? Of course it's because I'm taking responsibility for it. The end result of this response was that today I ate with a little more respect towards yesterday, even if late at night I overate my homemade granola mix. But I didn't eat until I was hungry in the mid-afternoon, and I even allowed myself some drinks and a snack at a bar when I sat in on a neighborhood meeting for my city (which was a planned snack).

To me, this is a maintenance attitude. I just wish I have it in me to limit myself enough to have a losing attitude.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SENSORYFOODIE 5/7/2014 4:35PM

    Yes, Holly. I am really being forced to look at the results of eating late at night on my body. In the middle of the day when I want to eat anything I want, I am asking myself "what is the right thing to eat?" I agree that nuts are dangerous--even plain ones! They're an excuse to binge, and they're so caloric and high fat! Today I made better choices than I did two days ago, even if I am eating because of an appetite and not true hunger. I am hanging in there and I am talking to myself. Thanks for writing, Holly. I am in the middle of the struggle--right in the middle of it--but I am walking the path.

Be well. Keep up the fight. And thanks for commenting on my artwork and the scene at Lake Erie. I had trouble adding a comment to those posts--not you, just the delay of the program made me impatient.

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HOLLYM48 5/7/2014 1:56PM

    Some days are tougher to control ourselves than others and I find that when I am really hungry, those are the danger zones for me. I try to keep the nuts out of my line of vision becasuse they are so tasty, those salty wonderful snacks, but oh so high in calories and I try to eat other things that have a little more bang for the buck as far as quantity goes. Oreo's I don't buy anymore and sometimes when we are in the cookie isle at the grocerty store, I have to keep on pulling my husband along and telling him to not even look at them because we will gain just by looking!
But you did the right thing by tracking and being totally honest about what you ate and one day does not derail all of your past accomplishments! It is the right attitude to say, "Ok it was one day and it is done and I can do better!" And you will because you know how.
This is not an easy journey, I wish I could eat anything and stay at this weight, but for me that will never happen and I have to work really hard at maintaining but it is worth it. That is the mindset that we must be in, that not eating everything and anything that we love every single day is worth being heatlhy and toned and fit!
Great job. It is one step at a time!
Holly

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BMR, BMI and A, B, C, D, E, F, G

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

So after spending about 30 minutes calculating and recalculating my BMR (relatively easy) and my BMI (much, much harder for me to get), I came away with much confusion over my base and my high caloric allotment given to me by SP.

Which leads me to my next post, which was coming whether I calculated my BMI or not or even knew what it was.

I have got to learn how to eat. Our ancestors--even 200 years ago-- knew how to eat. They ate when they were hungry. Someone knows the calculations of the average weight of our not so distant ancestors. Obesity is a 20th century disease that has come about by the scientific advancements in food storage and manufacturing of foods, that has made it easy to feed ourselves with less nutrients and more additives (to preserve shelf life) that has actually contributed to our eating more but being less satisfied.

All those commercials that show harried business people ordering in from Pizza Hut or grabbing a quick meal at McDonalds helps perpetuate the problem that gives us more calories and less nutrients from the food we eat.

No wonder vegetarianism that pushes grains from bulghur to wheat berries is in: this is the stuff that fills and expands in our stomachs and colons to make us full and to help push through other food. Whole grains and vegetables are good for us and need to be a bigger part of our diet. But saying no to the good stuff that Julia Child talked about and wrote about and cooked, that are among the last two vestiges of the old (sex is the other one), is hard to let go of!

When I first realized that I had a leaning towards vegetarianism and "whole", natural foods, I got upset about it. You see, I love to cook. It is an art form, it is creative. I didn't want to stop learning about cooking classic foods like flans or omelets or even steak. There is gourmet and then there is natural cooking. They are worlds apart in my book. You can cook vegetarian foods in a gourmet way. But the two, to me, don't go together. I wasn't going to become a vegetarian and not learn to cook other foods that I did not necessarily lean towards, like meat. I guess at that point I did not look at the question of how animals are raised; it was more that I didn't want to cut myself off from a culinary curiosity.

Will add more later today or tomorrow.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SENSORYFOODIE 5/1/2014 5:29PM

    A little bit of help from experts whom I trust and listening to the part of me that listens to these experts.

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/30/2014 10:00PM

    I am trying to get a better grip on things. I have been a little too casual and hit and miss and I am trying to be analytic, but in a very personal way.......not listen to authorities and experts so much.

Comment edited on: 5/1/2014 7:35:50 AM

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SENSORYFOODIE 4/30/2014 9:29PM

    Sounds like you're totally on top of your situation.

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/30/2014 6:32PM

    Lately with foods, I am literally "going with my gut!" How does the food make my stomach & intestines feel and act right after eating and within the next 24 hours. Certain foods are causing obvious reactions and I am mentally noting them. I want to figure out what my body is comfortable with.

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SENSORYFOODIE 4/30/2014 3:52PM

    You are right about that and I agree, and I think I follow that same regimen with those same foods. The great thing about replacements is that you can enjoy the same taste (i.e. replace sour cream with yogurt) and not have that addictive thing that happens with some foods. Foods have qualities that affect us and I am also interested in that like you, which is why I study Ayurveda when I make time for it. A. believes that foods have after-effects in the body when they're in it or being digested such as a sweet or sour residue and heating or cooling qualities as well. Also, they divide foods among qualities such as bitter, sweet, pungent, and sour (I may be missing one or two) which are good for some bodies and disturbing for others. For instance, heavy people don't need more sweet (fattening carbohydrate) foods, but can benefit by astringent ones (that "withdraw energy in" and are lightweight, like romaine lettuce). People who have fiery tempers and digestions don't need bitter and sour foods (hot peppers, cured olives) that would heat, and therefore aggravate, their already hot natures. It's more about the food's effect on digestion and assimilation than the personality of the person, but there are some overlaps in personality that can be aggravated by these foods.

Comment edited on: 4/30/2014 3:54:17 PM

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/30/2014 2:20PM

    I agree about not outlawing any food. On the other hand, I also am leery of using specific foods basically like a prescription....giving any one food kind of a super power. I just think that it is just more complex and individual than that. The only thing that I will avoid with certainty is trans fats if I know that is in something. I also try to avoid food that full of fat and basically nothing else .....like cheesecake or fatty meats or sour cream dips. I just don't think all that fat does me any good and it can really rack up the calories. Plus those kinds of things either don't agree with me, don't satisfy me, or just make me want more!


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SENSORYFOODIE 4/30/2014 11:03AM

    I totally agree with you, River. I am totally into different needs for different bodies, which is why I am trying to connect to my physical responses to foods and not just my habitual, knee-jerk response to their sensorial draw, i.e. the feel of cheddar cheese when you bite into it or it melts on something or how I can't stop eating semolina pasta, which never seems to really fill me up, yet satisfies me emotionally. I really am returning to those whole foods and reading about them. I am a long-time yoga teacher, as I told you, and I gravitate towards a natural way of eating. I have a book that talks about the digestive fire and the heating or cooling effect of certain foods. Reading it is going to help me with that more normal approach to food, i.e. eating when I am hungry and not because I'm supposed to by any measurement outside of my own body. Yesterday I realized that I have to get used to being hungry. That means that I am ready to eat (have a digestive fire). If I'm not, my digestive fire is weak. That is what Ayurveda would say (look into it--it's interesting).

The paleo diet. Don't you think that any foods that we totally outlaw is setting us up for some sort of failure?

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/30/2014 7:39AM

    Another interesting blog!
I am very different from you in the kitchen! I am cooking for myself and my husband and we have very different taste in food.
Plus he doesn't like to try anything new. I don't really like to cook and find that if I start looking at recipe books or cooking magazines & TV shows that I get really hungry!

I also am nowhere near vegan....although I do love fruit and vegetables.
Have looked into the paleo food movement and in theory do agree with the general ideas, but find it hard to put in to practice in every day life.

Right now, what I am working on is that I am trying to pay attention to my physical response to specific foods. I am starting to think that we all need to find our own definition of what foods our body thrives on and that what is considered a "healthy" food, might actually bother us. Our body chemistry is unique and we respond differently. I think this also can change throughout life.


Comment edited on: 4/30/2014 7:42:41 AM

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Becoming True to Myself

Monday, April 28, 2014

After six weeks on the program and enough weight, but not more than 10 combined lbs and inches, lost to make a visible overall difference in my appearance, I am back down to what I my common "normal", although, like obese people who after a certain period stop counting the lbs gained or lost and just live in the moment, I consider this weight to be my highest that I can tolerate before I look measurably overweight.

So, this is what that means:

I have to have a "new normal" for weight maintenance, and I have to kick myself off the 130 lb podium in order to do it. Even maintaining at 125 is good because 5 lbs is a sizable difference to a small person with a relatively small frame. But the last time I was 125 was when I was 20 and two times when I was in my 40's. You know, the real truth is that I never paid attention to my weight or my appearance enough to care what I weighed and how I looked.

this blog is in process. The next entry will come later today.

Part II Continuation:

Bringing Holly's and River Rat's comments in, I think that the reason why numbers that represent our bodies are so confusing to us is because we really are spiritual entities tied up in these masses called flesh, bone, fat, sinew, organs, and brain.
So why do we love our grandmothers who have fleshy arms, who come in all sizes and shapes, who provide meals for us and hugs and love, and think nothing of their weight, BMI, and size when considering their love for us? Because love can't be measured in numbers, and our love for ourselves should likewise not be. That is the short answer to why we must accept even small gains when we can see them physically.

This may be why we need mirrors and measuring tape to take objective measurements of our changes and why we can congratulate ourselves on changes that we can actually see. This is how we can come to accept that we have taught ourselves something new at our age and that we are indeed changing. But does that change the youngster in ourself who has still not accepted herself? This is why we set vision boards and measurable goals for the girl in us to reach. But if the girl is 5' 2" and has a stocky frame and uses ballet dancers as her example, what she wants and hopes for in a desired weight and look MAY NOT COME. She will have to accept what she is. This is the hardest thing to accept in life: that we cannot be everything--that we have to be the one thing we were given: our destiny for ourselves. So--if I put 115 as a goal weight, and the last time I was 115 was once in high school between sixth and seventh hour, for one day and for one moment in time, I may not be able to reclaim it at age 52 1/2 just because I have an image of what I'll look like with less fat. That may not be best for me and I may not even like what I look like.

Right now what I want most is to learn to trust my gut and and instincts with food. However, relearning how to eat according to the plan means measuring everything so I understand how calories impact the body. The former means that sometimes I will override my instincts not to eat. When I have learned not to eat when I am not hungry and how to eat to stay on the thin side, and to eat when I am hungry, maybe my body will find its right weight. Until I do, I will claim some "finite" number somewhere lower on the scale that makes me feel better about this weight loss journey. I'll find the right weight somewhere….hopefully lower than 130 and higher than death from starvation.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SENSORYFOODIE 5/7/2014 12:17AM

    Right-- I agree that some foods are like addictions that make us want to eat more. We need to eat foods that allow us to put them down. Some foods are too hard to do that easily and we need to just keep them out of our diet. For me cheese is one of those foods.

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/30/2014 6:40PM

    I used to dress to show off my proportionately smaller waist. Now, I've decided to wear skinny jeans and boots and let the top skim over my waist! At least the muffin top is gone!
As I said in my comments on your other blog, I am currently analyzing my reactions to specific foods. I just have a feeling that when I eliminate the ones that bother me, that my appetite will decrease and I'll be more satisfied with food and that my body will change a little more.

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SENSORYFOODIE 4/30/2014 4:21PM

    You are right about everything you said. I didn't know about frames growing up and it was easy to get upset because I looked different from smaller friends. As you can see, our bodies really do change. Some women get that wider waist, smaller hips as they age; that's tough, as we all expect an hour-glass figure. There is no perfect, even for the people who are perfect, because it is hard to be alone inside of ourselves (that's existentialism for you). But for the person who has worked hard to accomplish things that before were insurmountable hurdles, she must feel good somewhere inside of herself.

I say now that I don't look in the mirror to validate and find myself as much as to just check to see if I look okay or put together. The mirror is a friendlier place now. I'm happy with myself, even if I'm far from a skinny minny. If I keep working the program, the weight may come off and my body may just find its right weight. I appreciate that you are keeping up with my blog and writing such intelligent responses. Thank you for helping me grow as well!

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/30/2014 7:25AM

    You are creating an interesting discussion here with some provoking thoughts and multiple threads running through it. You make some important points, I think.
We are so much more than our weight (Grandma example).

We have to accept our basic frame and our activity preferences when envisioning what we want to do and look like. Think of the variety of human bodies that have health and fitness. Think of the variety of activities that are available.
There is not an ideal (a "right" or a "perfect"). And there is not one path to health and fitness.

Bodies change with age. I am 64. I did reach the goal that I weighed as a high school senior, and I have now maintained it for about 5 months. Compared to my body in high school my hips are 2 inches smaller; my thighs are 2 inches smaller; my waist is 3 inches bigger; bust about the same. I would like to get more off my waist, but think I'd lose even more off my hips and legs ....and my husband already says I danced my bu*t off. My arms and calves look more muscular now, but I think my back and shoulders were broader then. My boyfriend at that time said I was built like a brick **** house. Now I dance, stretch, do yard work, and do resistance bands, some light weights.
Then I was a cheerleader doing lots of jumping and tumbling. So, part of the change in my body is due to ageing process, having had a baby, and doing different exercise.

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HOLLYM48 4/29/2014 6:18PM

    I know for me, I still find it hard to believe that I don't look heavy. I have been in size 10 pants for several months and so mentally I know that I wouldn't want to be any thinner, but somehow, I can't see myself as thin. I know that we are much more critical of ourselves than anybody else will ever be. But sometimes I have to remind myself that even if I gain 2-5 lbs, nobody but me will really know that I gained those few pounds. I take pictures and compare them to a few years ago so that I can really see the difference and then I understand that I am no longer heavy. I know that with the help of my SP friends and the never ending support that this new normal for me will last for the rest of my life. I hope you feel the same and I wish you much success! Holly

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SENSORYFOODIE 4/29/2014 9:23AM

    Slow to getting back to my post and page, although now I am here. Thank you, River, for your comment. I will respond to it as I'm considering it!

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/28/2014 8:06AM

    I agree. I can relate to the concept of a "new normal." I think that is quite important.
If we don't accept our new selves, then I think we could easily revert.
I agree that it is also wise to have a top weight (or some other relevant measurement like body fat percentage) that you will tolerate.
Just wondering, do you think your head be at the place of conceptualizing a "new normal" before your body arrives there?

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It is enough

Friday, April 25, 2014

To get this far and to not congratulate myself would be to lose the lesson, so I've decided in this journey to say "dayenu"--it would have been enough--and to stop here. I've not given up the fight or changed my goals at all. I've decided that I can accept myself right here and right now for changing my body and liking those changes before I go any further down the road of more changes.

Why am I willing to do this? Because a) weight loss is hard, and b) there is no guarantee that I'm going to change my habits enough to make me go down to my "goal weight" of 115. I'm sure I passed 115 somewhere between sophomore and junior year in high school, but I was too busy eating pasta and crying into my bowl to remember it. At any rate, to not congratulate myself on my shapely ballerina legs would be to ignore all the hard work that my exercise has had on them, and my tushie, in the last six weeks.

In order to accept the minor (scale) weight fluctuations and still like myself and eat and be happy, I'm going to have to know what to work on, what to let go of, and what to do to still grow. Forgetting tracking my calories isn't a good solution, but eating too low on the totem pole of calories isn't going to work for me. I like exercise, so this means more of it. I need to tone my abdominal area, so working harder there is in order. As you can see, this is taking honest stock of myself. But if I never went further down the scale, I would still be happy. Why? Because my body HAS changed and I am proud of it! I like the way it looks! It looks good in a bathing suit. I look better in dresses and skirts. And I can fit into small/medium-size panty hose. This makes me happy. Am I in my dream body? No…. but what IS a dream body anyway? Does being thinner mean I'm a better person? I might be a crankier person. A cranky me is a slightly worse version of a cranky me now, which is cranky enough.

So for right now my goals are to: learn how to make my own vegan-style meals, because I'm a vegetarian and I need to get better protein choices, exercise regularly, because I like it and I want to tone my abdomen, and eat and enjoy what I'm eating and forget tracking SOMETIMES so I can feel like I'm living normally.

I've always held ballet dancers in high regard, although the old school tortured and starved themselves. The modern breed is much healthier, if you look to The New York City Ballet Corps as an example. I would LOVE to act like them.

If I don't act or look like them, then I will look and act like me. And I will love myself and accept myself unconditionally.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SENSORYFOODIE 4/28/2014 12:06AM

    Thank you, River! I'm glad you're reading my blog! I appreciate your comments!

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MISSUSRIVERRAT 4/27/2014 8:30AM

    Great point to be at. Everything you say makes perfect sense !
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SENSORYFOODIE 4/26/2014 4:17PM

    Thank you so much, Holly! It's a process of learning, or relearning, isn't it?? Love and life to you, Holly!

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HOLLYM48 4/26/2014 2:03PM

    Way to go Sensoryfoodie! I think you have hit a homerun! I absolutely agree with you. Love yourself for what you have accomplished right now. If you go further, great, if you don't then you have still won. Excellent work and excellent mindset. Thin is sometimes overrated. I often wonder would I be happier, no I wouldn't because I would probably be hungrier and you are right that makes people cranky. I want to be healthy and toned looking and able to run, jump, climb, exercise and have fun while doing it and that is where I am at right now! So good for you. You have figured out the way to be happy and healthy!
Holly

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I wanted to be a race car driver

Thursday, April 17, 2014

At age 52 3/4, I am finally stepping into adulthood. This means that I leave behind childish behavior and embrace courageous, uncomfortable behavior.

What is uncomfortable is being the person I was meant to be, instead of the person I think I was supposed to be. For years I tried to become what I wasn't, whether that was a straight-haired person, someone who was good at organizing, and mostly someone who just wasn't ME. Those may be the operable words: someone who wasn't ME.

Rather than post a litany of my neurotic obsessions , I'll just say that, existentially, it was hard to be in my body in the world and to be content with life at the same time. There were too many things to worry about, what with my set of of circumstances and my personality combined. I wanted to back up, rather than go forward with life. Adults cannot do that; they cannot back up. There is no stopping life, and it does not march back.
I am fond of saying that our eyes and our heads are perched so that we face forward, but I myself mentally always faced backward.

We are all born with a particular set of circumstances we must learn to overcome and we must learn to be successful navigating the world. Some people do well and others do not. Some end up homeless, while others never get out of their neighborhood (gun violence). I should consider myself one of the lucky ones. But I have never compared myself to the ones who are worse than me, I compared myself to my peers and my family members--people I looked up to and who socially I let have the most influence on my life.

Because we all have different personalities that make looking and reacting to the same situation differently, I have been one of the different ones in my family that makes comparing myself to them ineffective and even destructive. I have not had the courage to become what and who I was supposed to be; instead, I tried hard to be less than I could and to mute whatever strengths I showed. Being strong in a certain area was scary to me, once I saw that to excel in something different from others would make me stand out. I did not mute everything I did, but I found a way to downplay and discount it, thereby never knowing and finding the thing that I could latch onto to help launch me into a successful career, into the responsibility of having a longterm job, into the job of traveling the world, and finding a normal, healthy relationship.

Because I have always stumbled along, managing to make it, keeping my head above water and finding some small success teaching and managing people, one would say that I was successful. If success is measured in lots of money, then no, I was not successful. However, I was successful enough to buy a home on a small salary and to live alone in a small, Southern town where I was not born or raised for several years after my divorce. I managed to get to know lots of people and to build relationships with people, such that when I moved away, many people felt a loss. And I realize that I did--and do--too. That might be a measure of success.

As I adjust to being in a new town, back near my family of origin and the place where I was born and raised, I am finally facing forward, but with a healthy look at the demons that formed here in this city. How can one not grow up when you move back to your hometown? Not only am I responsible to myself and my own choices, as I moved here of my own volition (pulled by my new husband, but still coming), but I must fall back on all of my years of experience to package myself to this new community. All of the work I've done will be important to sell myself to prospective employers. That's where the personal work has come in. Inventorying my skills and my experiences, I see the thread present in my life since age 8, 12, 15, 21, 28, and 32. Even if I turned down certain experiences that would have built up certain strengths, the thread that projected me into the same type of work has provided a foundation upon which I can now stand in this new town. I am slowly getting work and I am slowly getting my footing.

As I am now more comfortable defining myself in a certain way, I am seeking out opportunities that will build on this title and the skills expected in this profession. If anything, I am learning how to become trained in it. Even if you have certain predilections towards something, you have to become good at it. For years, I negated my strengths, while trying to build on my weaknesses. Well, that leaves you with a wet piece of paper, easy to be poked through, rather than a strong piece of cardboard: strong but flexible.

I wasn't supposed to be a race car driver, but who and what I am is taking beautiful shape.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SENSORYFOODIE 4/18/2014 2:42AM

    I so appreciate your comment (s), Holly, and I also am glad that my blog is giving you food for thought. Thank you!

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HOLLYM48 4/17/2014 6:02PM

    I love it that with each day that we get up, we have so many many choices in front of us! It is never to late to become someone new, someone who is strong and someone that really believes in themselves. It sounds like you are slowly getting there and you have really thought about your past and what prevented you from obtaining the things that you wanted but were to afraid to go after. It is never to late.
Your blog is excellent, really made me think since I read it this morning as I was getting ready for work on my phone and then again this afternoon while I am waiting for my family to get home. I have been really lucky in life to have decided young who I wanted to marry and 29 years later we are still together, and I fell into a career that I love, not because I knew what I wanted to do at the age of 18, but I kept on following a path and eventually got me to where I wanted to be. I think you are right on track now and you have so much potential just waiting to bloom! You can do it! Thanks for sharing this part of your life! Holly

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