Thursday, May 05, 2011
I've been counting calories -- using the nutrition tracker, pre-planning my meals, following the Beck cognitive strategies to "learn to think like a thin person". I've got Beck cards to review which remind me to arrange my environment to eliminate temptations: that hunger is not an emergency; that I should sit down to eat; and that I can identify and cope with "sabotaging thoughts" -- including, that the process of tracking nutrition so closely is anal retentive and takes way too much time!!
And for me: it's been working.
Instead of yo-yoing 10 pounds up and down, I've been pretty stable.
And: I've been stable at a lower weight than I'd achieved before. I seem to be at a lower sustainable weight. So of course, I like that.
I particularly like it because staying lean reduces my chance of breast cancer recurrence significantly.
But today in the Toronto Globe and Mail on line edition there is a discussion with a psychologist who suggests that tracking calories can be the precursor of an eating disorder.
My family gets it. Nobody at home is pressuring me to eat more, or to stop tracking my food. They do understand. Completely.
But I certainly know that I've got social friends and acquaintances who would like to pressure me to eat more like they do -- more spontaneously, and more "binge" type high calorie foods on "celebratory" occasions. Whereas I'm trying to think of other ways to be social, and other ways to celebrate that don't involve overeating. Because life is to be celebrated much more often than I can "afford" the calories to overeat!!
I don't believe that I have any of the indicators of a future eating disorder, and I do believe that the Beck method is superb. It reduces the need to make eating decisions every day: NO CHOICE (or, I already made that choice, and it was MY CHOICE to do so. Yesterday. When I pre-planned.)
Whaddya think for your own selves: if you're tracking, do you think you're getting obsessive? Are you worried you may trigger an eating disorder??
Here's the link:
Wednesday, May 04, 2011
An article in the Toronto Globe and Mail says that liposuction isn't permanent. The fat comes back -- just not necessarily in the same place. So if you have fat liposuctioned off your tummy, it's back within a year but maybe in your upper abdomen, or back, or even your triceps.
Here's the link: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/the-ho
And the interesting thing is . . .even when people were informed about this research, many still opted to have the liposuction done!!
OK, I've fantasized about liposuction from time to time but . . . really? Worth the discomfort? The cost? And the wondering: where's it gonna reappear??
Saturday, April 30, 2011
I'm feeling very lucky that my slight indulgence over a birthday dinner for DH yesterday did not push the scale up -- or at least not yet! I'm holding at 142 for now, got to the gym today for cardio and upper body weights plus abs and stretching, we'll be heading out to the golf course tomorrow if weather permits! (And quite possibly, even if it does not!).
This is such a wonderful time of the year, I'm in a continuous state of barely-suppressed euphoria. I noticed that the big sticky buds on our chestnut trees are just beginning to split open. After a winter's worth of hyacinths blooming inside, I now smell hyacinths when I step out into the garden! In just a couple of days, all of the trees will be covered with that sharp acid green of first leaves. I may just have to take a day or two off work to get the full benefit of the spring joyousness, that "leaping greenly spirits of trees".
The first fuzzy green each spring always coincides within 24 hours or so with my son's birthday, and always reminds me of of his birth -- a difficult one by C-section, scheduled so that he would have his "own" birthday and not have to share with his dad . . . although as it happens they are so very close that neither would have minded . . . . and that first walk to the window after his birth, looking out from the hospital over the park across the street with all of the magnificent old maple trees just coming into leaf, as if the whole world was celebrating with a burst of renewal. (Oh, yes: he was worth it! Absolutely!! And continues to be . . . a very sweet young man! )
So here's the poem, which many of you will already know is one of my absolute favourites, and which never fails to give me pleasure:
i thank You God for most this amazing
by e. e. cummings
i thank You God for most this amazing
day: for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes
(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun's birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)
how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any--lifted from the no
of all nothing--human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?
(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)
Monday, April 25, 2011
This has been a lovely four days off work, relaxing at home and at the golf course. I indulged in a couple of toasted hot cross buns (yes, faithfully tracked, within calorie range!). Maybe these aren't an American tradition, because I didn't find them in the SP Nutrition tracker . . . President's Choice makes a delicious version with plenty of currants and nutmeg.
On Saturday afternoon we went for a walk in the woods: there are lots of the earliest wildflowers in bloom. Bright yellow colts' foot and marsh marigolds; tiny white and peppermint pink striped spring beauties; yellow dog tooth violet; and one of the best arrays of hepatica I can recall, including white, pale pink and soft mauve/blue. The trillium leaves are well up and I noticed quite a few buds. At home my garden has crocuses, hyacinths, tulips, scylla and daffodils all beginning to bloom: and the leaves on the lilac hedge are showing green. I got quite a number of bags of garden debris lifted off the flower beds but there is more to come.
It's also been a great pleasure to get back to the golf course. We were able to play 18 holes both yesterday and today; it was coolish but quite bearable, and no rain (as the forecast predicted) either day. I could hear so many different birds on the course: robins, Canada geese, mallards, red wing blackbirds, chickadees, gold finches -- and a chorus of spring peepers from the ponds. We saw a huge beaver swimming around very happily! The red maples are in full flower and the grass is becoming deep green. I'm finding that a winter at the gym and cross country skiing has put me in great shape for golf: and it was fun to discover that every item in my golf wardrobe (including the bright red size six skirt, which is the most challenging "test item") fits well!! Carrying a few fewer pounds gives me noticeably more energy too -- I'm usually pretty tired the first few games of the season, but not so much this year.
I have my lunch salad and fruits all ready for tomorrow, and it's going to be a busy week. But for now I've got a few more hours to kick back and relax: maybe I'll "let" my son thump me at Scrabble (as if it's possible for me to beat him oftener than every 12 games or so . . . )!
Thursday, April 21, 2011
CMB2048 posted a recent blog asking "How do I get this weight loss moving?" It was a heartfelt plea from a person who's really struggling and who is making huge progress with regular strength workouts, but time pressed at work and having trouble with the nutrition piece.
Here's the link:
And: here's my reply, for whatever it's worth:
" Try eating the "same" thing every day -- I do. Have never used the SP menu planners; don't cook really either, and almost never bake.
Breakfast: microwave oatmeal (2 minutes); or microwave omelette (3 minutes: Omega3 Natureggs and Simply Egg White). I change these up with different seasonings: flaxseed and raisins and cinnamon or cocoa and walnuts in the oatmeal. Maybe Kashi Go Lean for a change; always low fat milk with the cereal. Or low fat feta and spinach with Greek seasoning or maybe asparagus and a little parmesan and Italian seasoning in the omelettes. And salsa. There are lots of varieties!!
Lunch: huge leafy green salad of arugula or spinach or mesclun plus huge range of bright veggies (carrots, sugar snap peas, raw beet, radish, brussels sprouts or broccoli, cucumber, red pepper, tomatoes) plus lean protein (chicken/shrimp/chickpeas) plus small amount low fat salad dressing. NO croutons, no highfat cheese or meats, no creamy rich dressings. Maybe half an avocado once in a while. And afterwards, chopped mixed fruit -- huge range of bright choices: kiwi, pineapple, frozen mixed berries, frozen mango chunks, cherries, grapes, clementine. Rarely pear, banana. Different every day, but it's always salad and fruit. Make the salads and fruits the night before and it takes me 10 minutes tops. All ready to take to work in the morning.
Supper: every Saturday morning I make a huge pot of veggie soup using up all the left over veggies plus chicken broth, canned tomatoes, whole grain (brown rice/wholewheat pasta/barley) plus canned lentils/chickpeas/kidney beans) plus a different "ethnic" style seasoning -- curry or Thai or Italian or Greek or Mexican: no two pots of soup are ever the same. The soup simmers while I run through the laundry and read the newspaper -- takes maybe 20 minutes prep time.
When I get home from work, I nuke a bowl of soup fast before I eat something else-- and follow up with fat free sugar free yogourt and fresh berries: raspberries/strawberries/blueberries/black
berries -- I really love these. (Then I make my salads). Last treat before leaving the kitchen: low fat hot chocolate, with extra cocoa stirred in for extra chocolaty-ness.
If it's a social occasion "company dinner" then I'm going to have grilled chicken or fish, lots and lots of veggies, maybe a small baked potato -- I can almost always order something like that in a restaurant. And coffee. And a bite of my husband's dessert!!
That's about it. Sounds boring maybe -- but it isn't to me. I never get tired of it.
Beck taught me to pre-track my nutrition in the SP nutrition tracker the day before -- SP makes it easy because I'm using the food groupings I've developed and "editing out" what I haven't used for the next day's meals. No pear? then delete. No broccoli? I axe that one too. Takes maybe 3 minutes.
Snacks are generally fat free sugar free yogourt. If I'm going to have a glass of wine, I pre-track it.
So with pre-tracking, I don't have to decide what to eat 200 times a day (that's apparently the average number of times people make food "decisions" every 24 hours): I've already decided the day before -- there's NO CHOICE. Beck taught me this one too and it's become key for me. If I didn't pre-track it, I'm not eating it. Easy.
Beck has also taught me: sit down to eat everything, never eat standing up (it was all those spoonfuls of peanut butter and big chunks of cheese while my soup was heating that were sabotaging me). Tolerate hunger, it's not an emergency, it's perfectly normal and thin people feel hungry every day: in fact, if I'm hungry I'm going to enjoy my next meal more. Then when I'm finished, wait to feel full: it's going to take 20 minutes or so. That's OK. A good time to play Scrabble!
I've been eating the same breakfasts, lunches and dinners pretty consistently for a long time. It actually feels quite luxurious and self-indulgent to treat myself to all of those (not inexpensive) fresh fruits and giant shrimps and first quality veggies.
Plus: 85% cocoa Lindt chocolate squares in my locker at the gym for after my workout: bribery is so effective!
Hope this helps. "
I've been eating pretty much the same old same old every day for a decade since I lost 80 pounds. But have also recently fine tuned my plan based upon recent "Beck lessons" which have helped me take off about 10 more pounds . . . and which I hope will significantly reduce the yo-yoing of that final 10 pounds -- off and on and off and on again. We'll see: I'm still Becksperimenting to determine my "lowest sustainable weight".
And all that coffee? It's my only remaining sin (or that's my story). Without the coffee, I'd be impossibly self-righteous, right? Gotta guard against that self-righteousness vigorously and at all costs!!
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