Tuesday, August 18, 2009
I haven't been around much lately, except to track my calories, which I've been keeping up religiously. I'm back on Cape Cod, but I brought my computer, and I've been totally on track! My weight is now down to 143.8 so I'm within a handful of pounds away from my goal weight. :) I'm comfortable in a bikini these days and feeling good, and really proud of my choices. I haven't been running in a while, but I've been doing a lot of swimming! The waves aren't great for boogie boarding but I've been trying, and walking up and down those huge dunes (especially UP) is good exercise too. Tomorrow we're going to bike the entire Rail Trail, which I think is almost 50 miles, so tonight we're going to bed early. Foodwise, I've been making fruit smoothies for breakfast, salads for lunch (spinach, tomato, carrot, red pepper, EVOO, cider vinegar, walnuts, and/or fat-free feta), apples and homemade iced coffee drinks for snacks, and small portions of what everyone else is having for dinner.
Engagement updates...I bought a dress! It's sleeveless A-line, slight sweetheart neckline, beaded top and matching beading at the bottom, and the back of the skirt part splits open to reveal a chapel train with more beading. I also got two veils (blusher and elbow-length), a comb, a petticoat slip, a faux-fur wrap (getting married in February!), earrings, and a necklace. I have everything except the shoes and lingerie. The dress is a size 10, which kinda bummed me out (I thought I'd get a 6 or 8), but I'm telling myself it runs small. :)
Other engagement updates...we've looked at tons of venues and basically picked one, but I have to convince my parents because the place we picked is rather non-traditional. They prefer boring old country clubs, but the place Jess and I like is kind of like a campground, with an inn and lodge that look like ski lodges with wood beams and huge fireplaces. Gorgeous for winter, and they even offer sleigh rides (hard to think about in this heat wave though!). We'd like to have the ceremony in the inn lobby and the reception in the lodge which is a short walk away. We're undecided, but keep fantasizing about Hawaii for the honeymoon, though I'm not sure how much time off of work we can get. Any advice/tips/suggestions would be lovely.
We're doing black/white/red for colors. I plan to be all white from head to toe including flowers, and Jess will wear a black suit with a white tie and boutenire (spelling?!). The groomsmen will wear black suits with red ties and boutineires, and the bridesmaids will wear black dresses with red bouquets. No idea yet what my mother will wear, but since I'm spending the week with the mother of the groom who knows all the rules, I've learned my mom has to select her outfit first so Jess' mom can be sure to get something somewhat coordinating, but less flashy. So many rules!! I don't even care, as long as everyone has fun. :) I can't believe Jess will be my HUSBAND in less than six months!!!!!!! :) :) :) :) :) I am SO in love.
There will be plenty of vacation photos eventually...in the meantime, sorry I'm not keeping up with everyone's blogs, but I sincerely hope everybody is having a completely fantastic summer like I am!!!
Thursday, August 06, 2009
Wellfleet, Massachusetts is a special place for Jess and me. For those unfamiliar with Cape Cod, Wellfleet is an hour's drive once you cross the bridge from the mainland, just two towns from the "end of the earth" (Provincetown, the Cape's tip). Because of its relatively remote location Wellfleet is less crowded than other parts of the Cape, and due to the fact that the penninsula that is Cape Cod thins out toward the tip, in Wellfleet you get quiet sunsets on the harbor just minutes from sunrises over the open ocean.
Jess' family has been vacationing there every summer for well over a decade, and for the past five years, I've joined them. While there I've learned to boogie board and to crack a lobster, and I've been generously accepted by Jess' family. While I'm on the Cape it's common for me to bike with Jess' brother, drink a margarita with his mother, put together a jigsaw puzzle with his sister, and watch a Sox game on TV with his dad. I'm treated just like one of the gang, and it's always so cozy and comfortable.
Jess' parents rent a different house each summer now, but that wasn't always the case. For the first several years of their Wellfleet trips, when Jess was a boy, the "H"s stayed in a sweet cottage right in the dunes. Teenage Jess could just walk out the back door, through the beach grass-lined path, and down the huge sand hill to a beach so beautiful, it's easy to imagine you're on a tropical island. There was no need for cars or beach permit stickers or getting melted surf board wax all over your interior. Unfortunately, about ten years ago, a government plan kicked in that turned the house into part of the National Seashore, and to this day it's still standing, slowly deteriorating, but no one's allowed to live there.
The weather in Wellfleet on Saturday, August 1, 2009 was perfect. The Atlantic was as blue as the sunny sky, and after a morning bike ride down the Rail Trail and a lobster salad lunch, Jess and I biked to Whitecrest Beach to meet the rest of his family, who were coming to meet us by car. I caught a bunch of waves on my boogie board as Jess surfed in slightly deeper waters, and then I read in my beach chair under an umbrella until I was dry and it was late afternoon. By this point everyone in the family was out of the water and even though the midsummer sun was still blazing, it was time to start thinking about dinner. We lugged our belongings up the giant sand dune to the parking lot, where Jess and I were able to drop off our belongings in his dad's van in preparation for our bike ride back to the rental house. I didn't notice Jess also picking something up from a hidden corner of the van, and tucking it into his swimsuit pocket.
The family drove off, and Jess asked me if I'd like to bike over to the old cottage, which wasn't far. We like to check on it every once in a while while we're down there, even though nothing ever changes except the amount of peeling exterior paint. Even the same old couch and bed are still inside from Jess' teenage years.
This year was no exception. I know the place brings back memories for Jess, so I took a picture of him standing on the patio.
"Let's take a walk down and look at the beach," Jess suggested.
I agreed, so we navigated our bikes down the quiet path through the brush until the soft sand made it impossible to ride any farther. We laid our bikes down and continued on foot until we reached a spot just above the start of the sloping decline to the beach.
Suddenly, I thought to myself, "OH MY GOSH. What if THIS is THE MOMENT?" You see, I had always loved the idea of getting engaged while down on the Cape, and Jess was well aware of that, but his jeweler had told him my custom-ordered ring wasn't going to be ready yet this particular weekend. And surely I would have been able to tell if he were being sneaky, right...? He'd be acting nervous or he'd let some hint spill out? No, I'm sure it's not about to...
Just then, Jess dropped to one knee and reached into his pocket. I was shaking with emotion.
"Guess what...will you marry me?"
He was shaking too. This I had never seen.
"Yes," I replied, blinking back tears.
He stood and placed a small, open creme-and-black box in my hand. Inside was the perfect ring. Simple, elegant solitaire diamond in a custom-designed white gold band. I looked at the ring, then, at him. We were either laughing or crying, I'm not sure which. I think it's whichever choice means we were happier at that moment. We hugged, we kissed, and he slid the ring onto my finger.
We then proceeded to attempt to take our own picture.
On the path back to the main road, I couldn't contain my joyfulness. It just bubbled straight up from my heart and right out of me in the form of giggles, or shouts, or more tears. Once we were back to civilization we called both sets of parents to share the news, and then we biked to the Beachcomber for champagne. A random man who had learned we were just engaged bought us kamakaze shots, and then Jess' family met us for wine and lobster.
I have thought of almost nothing other than this moment, my February 2010 nuptuals, my happiness, and my love ever since.
Sunday, August 02, 2009
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Jess and I are leaving for Cape Cod tonight and coming back on Sunday. I will miss SparkPeople while I'm gone!!
I have recently been re-reading my SP blog, starting with my very first entry back in December 2006, at which point I'd been bouncing around the overweight range my entire adult life and didn't have any idea what I was capable of. So far I've only read through September 2007, by which point I'd already lost over 30 pounds, fell off the wagon hard, and started what was eventually to be a re-gain of all the weight I'd lost (a cycle I have now been through twice). Reading these blog entries, it strikes me how fragile my healthy habits were back then. When I was on track I stuck to my "rules" religiously, and when I was off track I really went wild and felt tons of shame.
I just read an article on the Daily Spark about the shame of re-gaining weight, and then I read through some members' comments. One that really struck a chord for me talked about wondering whether anyone really makes their healthy habits permanent when they first lose weight. It's as if many of us who are formerly overweight need a few trial runs before we really learn enough to get it right. There is so much to learn: types and amounts of food, how to plan and organize, how to track, how to become more efficient, how to stay satisfied with food choices, cardio, strength training, staying motivated, getting support... the list goes on and on. In one of my old blog entries, I wrote that I felt I had to continuously re-invent my program to stay motivated. I really don't feel that way anymore. I am incredibly proud to say that I feel I have a much firmer grasp on the fundamentals of a program that works for me. So I can go away for three days this weekend without freaking out. Because I now know that this healthy lifestyle is permanent for me. And that I can make good choices for both eating and exercise just about anywhere. And that the worst case scenario is that I let go of control a bit while I'm away and gain a few pounds, but that when I come home I'm back to my usual program, and no permanent damage will have been done. What a GREAT feeling!!
On a different note, yesterday's workout was back and shoulders for about 18 minutes, then 10 minutes of running on the treadmill, then 30 minutes on the recumbant bike, random setting, level 4. I was still feeling rather tired...I thought I'd get my heart rate up with the running, but then take it easy on the bike.
I did today's workout much earlier than normal - I got to the gym around 1 p.m. I think that made a difference for my energy level. I did 22 minutes of strength training (chest and abs), and then had a fantastic 65-minute elliptical workout - I REALLY pushed it and my heart rate was in the upper 160s and even lower 170s most of the time. My 10K time was 56:03 and my 60-minute mileage was 6.68. It was interesting to note that when I had finished my cooldown, at minute 65, I had hit exactly 7.0 miles.
Here's a rough idea of my weekend eating plan:
Breakfast - 600 calories - smoothies that I am about to prepare in advance, plus two cups of coffee with soy milk (about 600 calories)
Lunch - 400 calories - one serving of vegetable primavera, one bag of frozen veggies (Trader Joe's Harvest Hodgepodge)
Snacks - 600 calories - two large apples, 50 grams of walnuts (will bag in advance)
Dinner - 300-700 calories - small and healthy free choice! (restaurant or meal with Jess' family)
Oh, and how could one forget - alcoholic beverages! :) If I want alcohol on Friday and/or Saturday night, I need to budget room for it by having a dinner on the smaller side! Same goes for buying a coffee drink while out in P-town or on the Rail Trail!
Daily total - 1,900-2,300
*Make 3 smoothies (ideally 4 - so I'll have one ready for Monday morning because I'll probably be pretty tired when I get home Sunday night)
*Bag walnuts (3 bags)
*Pack a cooler with three veggie primavera containers and three bags of Hodgepodge
*Bring coffee, soymilk, and mini coffee maker (the house probably has one, but why not bring my tiny one just in case??)
*Bring water bottles, seltzer, tea
*Pack fruit. It just occurred to me that I have a bunch of fruit that will go bad if I wait until next week to eat it. Apples would be SO much more convenient, but they last in the fridge much longer. Doh! I wish I'd thought about that before I went grocery shopping the other day. I'll need to pack an amount of fruit for each day that is roughly equal in calories to two large apples.
Exercise is practically a given on this trip, with my boogie boarding, biking the rail trail (and maybe even roller blading on it a little bit?!?), and of course my current love of running. I won't be getting any formal strength training (every time I tell myself to strength train on vacation I don't actually do it, unless my hotel has a gym or something, and I already checked - my gym doesn't have a branch anywhere near there), but I will be plenty active so that's okay.
I better get going on my food to-do list...and of course, packing clothes!! Talk to y'all when I get back!
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