Thursday, November 07, 2013
Thought for the day that I read in a blog "Instead of glass half-empty, I think this glass might be broken because it keeps dripping all over me." Right now it seems like I need a new glass.
My life has always been busy, the oldest of 5 with a working mother, working my way through college, getting married, having a child and continuing to work, progressing through higher levels of responsible jobs while teaching college classes part time.
Then after I retired, I threw myself into volunteer jobs that kept me busy and involved. Last June, after 4.5 years, the volunteer organization changed and I decided to leave. During the same time my DH acquired (not by choice) some physical limitations so we cannot do some of the activities we have always done together and it has been a year of getting him healthy. Since then I have had more time to do nothing.
In fact I found myself not reading every minute, watching less television, scheduling fewer social events, and coming to the realization that I really didn’t know what kind of schedule I wanted to have. So I have been trying to figure out what I want my life to look like. I do have a wonderful DH, a beautiful DD, a fun SIL and a cute grandson, friends, family I like to see and a nice place to live. So this is about I want in my own personal daily schedule and what kind of glass I want to own and how I want to fill it.
At first it seemed important to find another volunteer organization to commit to but I have been resisting it. Then DJan who writes the Eye on the Edge blog (link below) had a recent post on the time change and her words really hit me. When I read DJan’s blog she really wrote out what I have been feeling:
"if I were to look closely at the way I structure my days, I might wonder if I should be spending time volunteering to an important cause, or perhaps making a difference in the world around me. The news sometimes causes me anxiety, because this world we live in needs people who are willing to make it a better place. I've got the ability but not the willingness. Am I wrong? Should I be living my life differently? Sometimes I really wonder about this. Well, this day of falling back, rather than springing ahead, has become one of contemplating my daily life. I've done that today, using my extra hour to think about where I'm going..."
In the busy times of living there was never a good time to think about what I really wanted to do. In the past I have done crafts, had hobbies, been involved with my family, organized social events, joined groups, belonged to organizations, took classes and was responsible in my community. So I know how to do all these types of activities and I enjoyed doing them. Yet right now I am not motivated to join or commit to anything. I have been feeling guilty about taking the time to explore but it feels right.
I did get my weight back to a healthy number and my daily exercise minutes are up (thanks to SP and Sparklers help) so I am feeling great. And I have been taking the time to look at issues around maintaining a healthy weight which is difficult at any age. Being 66 and retired allows me the time to explore. So I am taking the time right now to use the extra hours I have to think about what I want to add into my daily life.
If you can take a small amount of time and just sit quietly, think about what you would like in your daily life. Maybe it won't happen today, but it is good to know what your glass needs to look like and what you would like in it.
Eye on The Edge blog eyeontheedge.blogspot.com/
Sunday, November 03, 2013
It has been a rough week, several people close to me are very ill. It makes me melancholy because life around me is changing and I am anxious about what it will look like. I have found myself hiding in the house and pulling back from being engaged with others. It is easier to fold up rather than add more opportunity for pain. I am involved with those close to me and will be as strong as possible to help their families through the difficult times ahead. But the effect on my life and the empty spaces they will leave make my eyes tear up. I am allowing my self to grieve for those who are in pain and for myself and the loss I am already beginning to feel.
I read a blog Be yourself..everyone else is taken by Beth and her words echoed with me. (Do stop and visit http://moredoors.blogspot.com/ and enjoy the beautiful photography)
These thoughts are from the blog but fit so well with what I need to do to help me through how I am feeling right now.
Make others laugh
Make yourself laugh
Be, don’t be back there or too far ahead, just be here
Love deeply, love like there won’t be a tomorrow,
Be thankful when you wake up, the past is the past, leave it there
Play in the leaves
Don’t keep your feelings inside
Quiche can be eaten three times a day
Walk, walk a lot,
Don’t wear clothes that make you feel ugly
Drink more water,
Figure out what makes you happy and do it
And Last but not least, let me repeat. Be here, Be Present
My thoughts go out to anyone who is feeling a loss and I hope that we all come through our journeys with our focus to have happiness in our days and to add happiness to the lives of those we love. I am so grateful that I found SP, getting healthy and strong will help me through the stress and the people I have connected with have helped me to understand myself better.
Tomorrow I will be back on track but tonight I am going to allow myself to feel sad. But food will not be involved I have learned how to take care of myself.
Be yourself..everyone else is taken by Beth
Thursday, October 17, 2013
I was thinking about the last time I got off track with my food choices. What caused me to get derailed from my good intentions? One of the problems was not eating enough protein at meals and then the Munchies Devil would attack and I would eat anything that was available. So I make sure that I have egg whites at breakfast, keep lean cooked turkey in the freezer for snack, and have kidney bean salad with my lunch. This really helps when the munchies attack, I am better able to pick better portions. Before I would overdo the amount of peanut butter, but now I measure it out and spread it on low calorie crackers. A small change but has a big payoff in total calories during the day.
The Sugar Monster would attach at almost any time and I would snack on anything sweet, but I keep individual applesauce servings in the refrigerator and go for one of them first. Then if I still want something sweet like chocolate or a cookie, I find that I can limit the amount I eat.
In figuring out maintenance, it is clearly important to find strategies that will work every day and that I can live with. Just saying no doesnâ€™t work but having some easy, acceptable alternative helps me with making good choices. It is too easy to slip in extra calories and then slide down the slippery slope back to weight gain. Small changes becoming habits will be a part of my success. I need this to help ward off the Munchies Devil, the Binge Demon, the Emotions Beast and the Sugar Monster.
It is all about calories and being happy with the calories I eat. Maintenance is definitely different than losing weight.
Friday, October 11, 2013
First thanks to everyone who liked my blog and made it a Featured Blog Post and thank you for voting me a Motivator. It really does mean a lot when someone posts a comment and shares their story. Thank you.
In my continuing process to figure out how to keep myself healthy and at a good weight, I realized that the After-You-Get-To-Goal is just the beginning of another phase. As I thought through this I have spent some time “getting in touch with my feelings.” How many times have I been through a workshop --on all sorts of topics -- that the leader has brought this up? Often it is easy to be active during the exercises during the workshop or training but it is really, really hard to apply different strategies during the chaos and messiness of day to day life. But it has become apparent to me that keeping the weight off is partly about managing the feelings that food evokes.
I see apple pie and lemon meringue pie and it reminds me of helping my mom in the kitchen when I was young. Hot dogs, hamburgers, potato chips, fried chicken and potato salad bring back pictures of picnics and big family gatherings. A simple thing like the smell of beef stew with dumplings cooking on the stove on a cold winter night is very comforting. Pumpkin pie is all of those Thanksgiving and Christmas family gatherings. Nowhere does a bowl of broccoli bring up memories (unless it is a wonderful high fat cheese casserole). So whether I am happy, sad, stressed, bored, angry, lonely, nostalgic or ecstatic there is some food that will help reinforce my feelings or bring me comfort while I work through them.
What I realized as I work through the first part of maintenance is that I have to give up the foods that are tied to my memories because many of the foods do not fit into my healthy lifestyle. So my first reaction was total DISBELIEF that I could not go back to the way I ate before and it made me very angry. I have to permanently Change my Food choices. As I worked through these emotions in my blog it seemed that the Stages of Accepting Change really apply. I found the list on the Internet and have rewritten them to apply to me.
The Stages for maintenance are:
1. Shock and Anger, I learned that Change in Food Choices is permanent and I still do not get the 20 year old body back.
2. Denial, I wanted to be in a comfort zone, it will be different for me “I can still eat all the cheese I want”.
3. Depression, feeling depressed and negative about giving up foods I love to eat and only having them occasionally in small amounts if I really want to keep the weight off.
4. Insight and Acceptance, realizing that without Change in Food Choices, the road will lead me back to an unhealthy place while Change in Food Choices leads to a real chance of success and I am in charge of making those choices
5. Learning and Actualization, a positive mind state, adapting and figuring out strategies for Change of Food Choices and incorporating them into a healthy balanced life
I can see that in previous weight loss situations, I had never worked through the phases and really got stuck at number 2 or number 3. I am working through the Depression of giving up foods I have always loved to eat and working into Insight and Acceptance. Part of this process is learning to cherish the memories but not indulging in the calories. Also, it is about recognizing emotions and acknowledging them with something other than food. And recognizing hunger and choosing wisely most of the time trying to push out the Food Demon (Eat both donuts!) from my healthy self-talk (Have some fruit and ½ of a donut).
What struck me as I read through the comments was how many Sparklers have moved to the learning and actualization state. It doesn’t mean that maintenance is always easy. But the bottom line is you’re weight’s always going to creep up. You just have to keep pushing it down. We have to do the best we can with whatever information is available and what we accept about ourselves. You can read through all the wonderful comments but these are the ones that really resonated with me. Thank you all for sharing I posted your Spark name at the end of the comment.
SOME THOUGHTS ON CHOICES
Stick with what you know is truly fair and that you can live with for a long time. It really doesn't have to be a terrible struggle every day. OOLALA53
But I think in the end it is about doing the best that we can do to stay healthy without killing ourselves or injuring ourselves to lose the fat. HMAZIS
Fortunately as humans we've got free will and intelligence and grit, and we get to decide if something is worth the effort. 4A-HEALTHY-BMI
It is clear that the same rules for weight loss apply whether you're 30 or 60 -- reduce your calorie intake and increase your activity level. TORTISE110
Mother Nature can be such a meanie, but I will accept a healthy body and organs and let the shapers and camouflaging clothing handle the appearances! We will not give up, even though time is definitely not on our side! MNNICE
I can totally relate to what you say. It's the same for me. Losing weight means exercising my butt off - literally- and starving myself to death - literally. LOL. I have scaled back my expectations. MORTICIAADDAMS
I just keep moving and strength training at a moderate rate. I have stopped focusing on the scale number and rely on how I look and feel in my clothes. RACINGTODOIT
I enjoy and appreciate my new body, my new muscles. I'm not going to lose sleep over what I have not achieved so far! NICKYCRANE
I have learned to enjoy my cup of lasagna, and just a tablespoon of each component in a Cobb Salad. The one upside, I guess, is that time seems to pass faster at my age, so "a couple times a year" doesn't feel so onerous. NELLJONES
But I do more than an hour of exercise daily, including ST and I really watch what I eat. I am a size 8, but if I don't watch that will become a 10 again, and I gave all those clothes away. I think that it is important to watch what I eat and how much I exercise to make sure I feel and look good. I am 59 1/2 and find that every year it gets harder. But I work harder. LRSILVER
I hope I will be able to make good choices and live a healthy life and be content and satisfied with how I look, belly fat or no belly fat. I think the most important thing is how healthy I am and to continue to make healthy food choices and keep portion controls in check, and from there I'll take it one day at a time. OFFICECHIK
I am not in my 60s yet but as I creep into my 50s I am feeling all of the things you wrote here. It is really hard to maintain that first initial goal weight as we age and Mother Nature pulls her fast ones on us all. Great glob! Thanks for sharing. ISHIIGIRL
I refuse to live my life worrying about every mouthful of food. OOLALA53
Do I cut out all of the foods I enjoy across the board or do I eat healthy and enjoy some of my favorites, too? At my age, I'm thinking of enjoying my life a little more but I'm not liking the numbers on the scale or on my pants. My goal needs to be healthy not thin! BETHGILLIGAN
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