Thursday, December 31, 2009
For reasons I can't explain, I simply cannot wrap my brain around this idea that we are about to enter a new decade.. I mean, 10 years ago, we were on the verge of "Y2K." We didn't know what the world held in store for us come 1/1/00, would computers be able to handle the turning of the calendar to a whole new century? Would our infrastructure collapse because they could not? Would our computers boot up? Would some sickos somewhere decide that Dec. 31, 1999 would be the night of nights to launch attacks on innocent victims.. Do you remember? I do, yet it seems like a million years ago at the same time.
On a personal note, I was still practicing law, working for myself. I was in the middle of years of infertility treatment, a long, tough, several year process that never seemed like was going to result in success. Somehow, the turning of that calendar signified the turning of a page in that battle, and in my head, the new century, decade and year would bring success, finally.. But it did not come easily. As a matter of fact, on December 31, 1999, DH and I spent the morning at an infertility clinic, awaiting the transfer of 3 perfect embryos into my uterus, the culmination of our second IVF cycle. A funny thing happened that day..the doctor could not do the transfer, and didn't understand why. So what started as a day full of promise, a day that might, 2 weeks later, result in hearing the words I had been waiting years for, aching for, ended as a day of utter disappointment, concern and sadness.. But the turning of that page held such promise, even after that happened.
Anyone who knows me knows that ultimately, that aspect of my story has a happy ending. The wonderful little T, love of our lives, was born within 2 years of that fateful day. But that was the day that our quest for pregnancy hit bottom, and although we still had some rough times ahead, nothing could compete with the utter hopelessness that I felt that day.
So, aside from being 10 years later, why am I dredging up this old story? I guess because today, 10 years later, I'm sort of looking forward to 2010 as the year I am really, truly, going to devote my energy to weight loss. I have done much of the prep work. But I still cannot manage to get over the hump. In the last year, I have had some sensational periods of doing all the right stuff...but unfortunately, they have been followed by equally unsensational periods of undoing all that good work. I have still lost more weight than I've gained back, but truth be told, I just think I should be further along on the path at this point.
I say that not in a crying over spilt milk sense, because I truly don't believe in wasting energy on that, but in a "it's time to get it done, Tina, you aren't getting any younger and it's not getting any easier" way. Do you know what I mean? I think anyone reading this does.
So, this is not my "here is my plan blog." It is my statement of intention, my public promise to myself that withing the next day or so, the plan will be crafted and posted. A contract with myself. I kind of like it.
I hope everyone has a wonderful evening tonight, and that the promise of the new year is as exciting to you as it is becoming to me. My plan is coming. Happy New Year.
Wednesday, December 02, 2009
Sometimes, the strangest things strike me. And today, I as I sit here and eat my breakfast, I have been struck by the strangest urge to write I've had in a while, and here it is:
I love old fashioned, cook it in the pan oatmeal. I make it with 1% milk, a packet of splenda, cinnamon, raisins and chopped walnuts. It is the perfect breakfast, it is yummy, it fills me up, it has lots of good nutritional value.. So, why on earth am I blogging this?
Well, first, to share the wonder of this stuff. If you haven't tried this, and you think that those packets of oatmeal you can add hot water to or throw in the microwave are the way to go, you are simply not going to believe the difference.
Second, to lament that the ONLY way to make this stuff is on the stove..the milk boils over in the microwave no matter how large the bowl I place it in, and truth be told, it just doesn't taste that good when it's cooked in the microwave.. So....you need that 10 minutes to make it, and then at least another 10 to eat it..honest, it takes that long, a little bowl of 1/2 cup oatmeal, 3/4 cup of milk, and a few additions, takes that long to eat, because it is hearty and delicious...
There it is, my ode to oatmeal.. Have a great day!!
Thursday, November 26, 2009
I wonder how many thanksgiving blogs have been or will be written on this day? Usually, I feel blogs coming on for a while before I actually sit down and write one, but today, the urge just struck me.. Now, for a methodical, plan it out person like me, it is weird to just sit down on a whim, but that is one of the things I am thankful for on this day: that I have learned to be flexible. And on this journey to health, flexibility has been the key to continuing when it seems there is no continuing to be done..
Habits are important., the bad habits have to be eradicated and replaced with good ones, and none of that is easy. Once we have established those good habits, we are very reluctant to deviate from them, for fear that a day of deviation will lead to two days, will lead to slipping backwards, away from the good and back to the bad.. And then once that deviation happens, the mind seems to say to you, well, you've blown it, you may as well keep eating or forget about exercising for the day or, well, you get the picture I'm sure..
But that is where the message of SP comes into play. Because it has taught me that you can't undo lots of good work in a day or even a week..when you have truly committed to changing your lifestyle, you take it all in stride, you don't let one slip turn into a 20 lb gain..
What I have learned the most is that there is a middle ground between habit, which is good and important on this journey, and rigid adherence to a schedule that, once broken, does not signal the end of the good things that are in that schedule.. The key to finding that middle ground is being flexibile..and that is what I am most thankful for on this day (aside from being thankful for my family, having our health, having jobs, a nice home, all that goes without saying, I am lucky enough to be able to say all that and of course I am thankful for all that), that I have learned to be flexible..didn't get up early enough to do my 30 minutes on the bike? Well, is there time for 20 minutes? Cos 20 minutes is better than none, and maybe you can get a walk in later, but even if you don't 20 minutes IS better than none! Not really any healthy choices for lunch here? Make the best choice you can and make up for it with a lighter dinner high on volume (extra salad) so you're not hungry when you go to bed.. Had a bad day yesterday? Today is another day.
Finding this middle ground has made a huge difference for me on this journey. I haven't lost all that much weight (somewhere around 25 lbs, but it's been as high as 34 and has also been down to about 22), but it has taken me most of the 50 years I've been on this earth to develop the bad habits that have gotten me here, it'll take more than a couple of years to break them and replace them with good habits. And I can say this: in the last 2.5 years, I have developed a 5 to 6 day per week exercise routine that has pretty much stayed the course, my blood pressure is down, my weight is down, and I feel good.
So on this Thanksgiving Day, I am thankful for all that I have, but in addition, I am thankful to SP and its lessons, and I am thankful to my many Sparkfriends who have journied with me, pushing and pulling me along at times, to help me get where I am, and I hope I have done the same for them at times, too.
Happy Thanksgiving Day, 2009, to all my SparkBuddies!!
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
...to finally realize that SOME exercise is better than NO exercise. This is my EUREKA moment, perhaps of my lifetime.
This morning, I woke up at around 4:50 am. Yes, that is early, but when you consider that I"ve been going to bed between 9 and 9:30 pm, it's not that early. So, like yesterday morning, I decided I was going to go downstairs, have a cup of coffee, do a little sparking while the house was nice and quiet, then go upstairs, wake DH and get on the exercise bike. For many different reasons, I was downstairs longer than I would have liked, and I was about 10 minutes behind the schedule I had in my mind when the morning started. So, as I know I have WAY too many times in my life, I had pretty much talked myself into NOT exercising..then...I thought, well, I could just cut down on my workout.. Sooooo...I exercised for 25 minutes instead of 30 minutes this morning.. I worked very hard, I sweat as much as I usually do, and I feel as good as I usually do... And Monday morning, I exercised for 20 mintues instead of not exercising at all.
Why is this a big deal? Well, for me, it is because I've always been kind of an all or nothing kind of girl.. If I'm watching what I eat and make a bad choice, I am prone to throwing my hands in the air and saying "well, I've blown this day" and proceed to eat everything in sight for the rest of the day. If I don't have time to do the "full" workout (or what my own mind thinks of as "full"), then I don't do it a workout at all.
This is not the Spark way, I know, and I am here to finally, after about a year and three quarters as part of this wonderful site, able to say I have learned, I HAVE FINALLY LEARNED AND I HAVE FINALLY DONE (because, as you know, learning and doing are very different things, indeed)!!! A little is better than none!! I'm a bit amazed that I, a queen of baby-stepping, really didn't embrace all that that term means, until now, but here I am, admitting it for all the world to hear.. It is to take every second of every minute of every hour of every day of every week of every month of every year of a lifetime ONE AT A TIME, and to make the most of as many of them as you can. Not ALL, but not NONE!! Wow.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
So I put a question on my status this morning asking everyone, "what are you going to do to make your Sunday Sensational?"
Naturally, that started me thinking about what I'm going to do to make MY Sunday Sensational? I mean, isn't Sunday sensational enough? It gets started with Church, a wonderful way to start any day, it's the weekend, I don't have to go to work, I get to hang out at home..isn't that sensational enough? Well, yes it is, but it can be even more sensational: I can exercise without the time stress of the weekdays, I can cook something healthy and nutritious that takes more time than I have during the week, I can relax a bit..
So, today, here are my plans: Mass, cook some beef stew, go for a walk because it's going to be very nice out, go to little T's soccer game, build our haunted gingerbread house with little T..above all, enjoy my precious time with my family..
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