Friday, May 24, 2013
This post is extracted from a much longer one at my personal blog: silentsgirl.wordpress.com - there are other, non-weight loss issues I cover there, and probably not of interest to non-Sparkers.
The New Mantra
My new mantra (shortened for Spark)? No regrets
I come by this after realising that I was making myself miserable worrying about how I was doing things, what others thought of how I was spending my time, and whether I was fulfilling my “obligations.” Yeah, we’re done with that. Old habits, I know, die hard, but it’s a start.
I tried knitting a couple of years ago, and couldn’t get it. I cried. For hours. Huge, gut-wrenching sobs that made my chest hurt the whole next day. Why the hell did this upset me so much? So I can’t knit. Big Effing Deal. So now, when I try something new and I discover that I either (a) hate it, or (b) am really terrible at it, I remember that stupid knitting experience, kick some dirt over that muck and move on.
On a parallel, I’m moving into a healthier life (faltering step by faltering step), meant to prolong my life now that it’s happy, and to avoid the health issues that plagued my mother and eventually killed her. This is a slow journey, and it will only end when I do. There will never be a time in my life (unless I’m diagnosed with a terminal illness, God forbid) when I will be able to say “yep; I’m done exercising,” or “fried chicken three meals a day for the rest of my life!”
Where “no regrets” comes in, or actually what I should say is “no guilt,” is that this journey will not be fried chicken or red velvet cupcake free, or else it’s a trip I wouldn’t want to take. I will have an occasional treat, and I absolutely refuse to allow guilt any room in my life. I remember when I was on Weight Watchers a million years ago, and I said something to a then-friend (who turned out not to be one, but that’s a different post) about how I was going to be careful in incorporating crab rangoon to the Points system. She said “you can’t. You can’t ever have crab rangoon again.” As my mother so beautifully put it – To Hell with that noise. The trick is not to have twelve of them in one sitting. And even if I do, the next day is brand new with no mistakes in it, and I resolve to look back and say “damn, that rangoon was delicious,” and not “I hate myself for eating that rangoon.”
I've lost and regained, and lost and regained again. Each time, I learn something about the experience and have better success the next time around. I'm a work in progress, but I'm getting there.
And now, because they’re both precious, here are my two favorite reasons for living a deliberate and positive life:
Monday, February 14, 2011
I am in the process of getting healthy by changing my lifestyle. I’m moving more and making some different eating choices. I’m not perfect, and I’ll never lose my love for fried chicken and crab rangoon, but I need to learn how to incorporate those foods into my life without letting them ruin my life. My mother died at age 61, after a lifetime of struggling with her health. In most ways, I very much want to follow my mother’s example. In this way, I do not.
The journey began in August 2009, when I realized that my back ached all the time, that I felt tingling in my hands and feet and that I couldn’t walk to the end of the block without needing to rest. I got started, and then went to the States and blew it all to Heck because my habits hadn’t yet become ingrained. By the time the 2009 Holidays arrived, I had fallen off of the wagon, and didn’t care about getting back on again yet.
May 31, 2010 – My sister-in-law’s wedding. I was one of the photographers, meaning I wasn’t in most of the photos. In the one that my brother-in-law took for the event, I was generally okay with how I looked (this was never about my looks, but about my health), but I remember being terribly tired and having a hard time finding an outfit that fit me properly without me falling out of it like a muffin top.
Even though I knew what had to be done, I couldn’t be bothered, and I let it all pile on throughout the Summer. When we visited the States for our annual Keaton events, I took a dress with me that I couldn’t fit into by the day I needed to wear it. Thankfully, I found one while we were travelling, but that wasn’t the point. I knew that when we returned home, the hard work of changing my life would need to begin – again.
October 10, 2010 – Gentle cardio and reasonable food choices. I’m glad there’s more variety in healthy eating than there was in my mother’s day. I’m sure she had trouble getting healthy because all that was available to her was cottage cheese and Ry-Krisp. Keeping track of what I eat is crucial, and getting at least 10 minutes of movement in a day is terribly important.
20 lbs less - December 31, 2010
Once I started moving more, I discovered my chronic pain issues were becoming more manageable. My back hurt less and I got to the point where I was able to travel farther between rest breaks.
27 lbs gone since October 2010
I am not “dieting.” Dieting implies an end point to the healthier choices I’m trying to incorporate into my life. The weight loss is happening because of the change in behavior; it is a bonus. The bonus is 41 lbs. since August 2009, 27 of that happening since October of 2010. There will be ups, there will be downs and there will be boring old flat days. Journeys are like that.
Monday, November 22, 2010
It's where you find it. In my case, I found that when I stepped on the scale for my weekly weigh-in, I had lost a stone since starting over (that's 14 lbs to the Yanks among us). Suddenly my craving for fried chicken turned into a desire to work out and see if I could keep up the momentum.
Today, I paired cardio and strength training for the first time in more than a year. Usually I only do one or the other, either because I run out of steam or I'm just plain lazy. Today, because of that magic 14 lbs, I was pumped to jump around AND flex.
Instead of that fried chicken, which sounded so good earlier today, I'll be having one of my waist-friendly meals. Instead of being snuggled up with a book, I'm in desperate need of a shower because I've gotten my blood moving.
One little thing. Since I started this journey, I've found myself doing far more arithmetic than I ever wanted (which is to say, I'm doing it at all). "If I have these 300 calories, I can't have that later. Can I eat this now, because we'll be dining out and I don't want to go over-budget." Does it ever become second nature, because it's feeling a bit OCD at the moment.
The next goal is a very small one. If I lose just three more pounds, I'll be below a certain number on the scale. I like those baby steps. I just wish I could reduce the food math.
Wednesday, November 03, 2010
I'm almost back down to the weight I was when I first started this journey two years ago, so I'm headed in the right direction. I've devoted energy and time to finding tasty, interesting items (boredom is my enemy) that I can eat which will boost my protein and keep me energised, because if I can't keep my energy up, I'm in deep, deep trouble. Thank goodness my favorite beverage is water, because that's saved me in numerous ways.
Part of my problem is that I don't cook. I don't like to cook, and I don't do it well, so I have to find items that are easy to prepare without being loaded with fat. That's not easy, but I'm tenacious. Tonight's dinner features brown rice and meatless hamburger patties. Less than 400 calories, very filling and tasty, and fast/easy enough for even my short attention span and lame cooking skills. The bonus is that I'm left with wiggle room for some Weight Watchers carrot cake dessert.
So, last week I began. This week, I continue. Earning two spark trophies for consistency and points really helped with my motivation, as does feeling a bit better as my endorphins start to flex.
Maybe by next week, I'll actually be comfortable in what once were my "comfy" jeans. Baby steps....
Monday, October 18, 2010
I started over two years ago, and then again last December. I now weigh more than I did when I first decided that I'd gone "too far." I don't mind how I look, but I *do* care about how I feel. I'm tired all the time, and I'm so frustrated, with myself, with my abilities, and with the whole process. Obviously I need to exercise more to up those endorphins, but getting started, even wanting to get started, is a very high peak which seems like a dot from where I'm standing. Will I get there? I don't know. Will I try? Yep. Once again, I'll try.
Get An Email Alert Each Time SILENTSGIRL Posts