Wednesday, December 02, 2009
This is the first time in years that I'm not dreading the holidays and the food-fest that accompanies them, followed by the holiday weight gain! In the past, the holiday season was a reprieve from 'dieting'. How many of us thought that we would start again after New Years Day? Then after stepping on the scale on January 2nd, I would regret every Christmas cookie, glass of eggnog, and calorie infused 'goodie' that I consumed over the holidays! That was then and this is now. I decided that there isn't a Christmas 'goodie' on the face of the earth that's worth that feeling!
To be honest, it was never just ONE cookie! But deprivation is NOT the answer either, moderation is. I was so proud of myself over how I handled Thanksgiving. Portion control, moderation, and smart choices were what enabled me to lose weight that week. But if I want to eat an 'occasional' Christmas cookie I'll have ONE, and factor it into my calories with my food tracker. I will NOT be eating a plate of cookies! Three words that I don't want in my vocabulary any longer are DIET, GUILT, and REGRET! I plan on having a guilt-free holiday season and see the number on the scale go down. Come January 2nd, I will be doing the happy dance on the scale, NOT throwing it out the front door!
Friday, November 27, 2009
I actually feel proud of myself for how I handled the temptation of the calorie-killer meal, know as Thanksgiving! In the past, a holiday would have been an excuse for falling off of the wagon for the day. Heck, I wouldn't have just fallen off, the wagon would have run me over a few times! But that was then, and this is now! In the battle of me vs. Thanksgiving, I WON! I told my DH that I would allow myself a SMALL piece of dessert, ONLY if I exercised first, so we went for a nice bike ride in the morning.
We went to our friend's house for the holiday, as usual. I resisted the cocktails and chose sparkling water with fresh lime. Despite the fact that my friend told me 'to go off of my diet' for the day, I didn't. I don't want to look at the WAY I eat as something that I'm either on or off of. It's not about deprivation, but instead moderation, and making smart choices. The way I see things now is totally different than the past, and I had no apprehension about facing a big holiday meal. I thought about how long I would have to ride my bike to burn off the calories, and realized that it's just not worth it!
Instead of focusing on the food, I decided instead to have a good time enjoying the company of my DH and our friends. I was careful with my choices and my portions, and yet still enjoyed a holiday dinner. We always watch a Christmas movie after dinner to kick off the holiday season. We laughed, talked, and really had a great time! And yes, since I exercised, I allowed myself a very small piece of pie, which was delicious. I didn't stuff myself like a Thanksgiving turkey, and the best part - NO guilt!
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Since tomorrow is Thanksgiving, it's only natural that I would be feeling thankful for all of the blessings in my life. We spend every Thanksgiving with our best friends, which are our make-shift family. We'll go to their house tomorrow, and every Christmas Eve they come to our home to celebrate the holiday. We started a tradition years ago at the dinner table, before we eat. We take turns going around the table saying what we are all thankful for. After dinner we always watch a Christmas movie to get into the holiday spirit. It's always a wonderful day.
This holiday is about so much more than turkey and pumpkin pie, it's about feeling thankful for what we do have in our lives. The way things are out there in the world right now, there are people without a home and food to eat. There are places in the world where people don't have clean water to drink. There are people that aren't safe and struggle to have the basic necessities. We have soldiers, separated from their loved ones, that put their lives on the line. I don't want to ever take the blessings that I have for granted. I feel thankful for my life!
Here are some of the things that I feel thankful for:
My hubby - always at the TOP of my list.
Good health - for both my DH and myself.
Our friends that are our make-shift family, and their health and happiness.
Having a comfortable home.
The 3 little furballs that share our home with us, that love us unconditionally.
Having healthy food to eat and clean water to drink.
Feeling great and having increased energy.
My Spark friends, and their friendship and support.
SP, which helped me get my motivation back.
Feeling positive about reaching my goals.
Feeling strong and determined.
Feeling good about myself again. YAY!
My shrinking butt!
A MIL-free holiday, since the Toxic-Turkey is NOT invited to our friend's house. Always a reason to feel thankful!!
I could go on and on, but the above list was just off the top of my head. Naturally this is a time of year that I really miss my family, but I have good memories to look back on. Plus, I choose to concentrate on what I have in my life, NOT what's missing. As I look forward to spending Thanksgiving with the people that I love most, I feel blessed! I hope that all of my Spark friends are preparing to spend the holiday with the important people in their lives, and also feeling thankful for life's blessings. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!!
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Every morning I read from a book of daily meditations, and then go for my bike ride. I like to use that quiet time to think about what I read. Today's topic was the power of gratitude. My first thoughts were of how grateful I felt to be sharing my life with my husband. I'm also grateful for the good health that he and I have, as well as the health and happiness of our friends and extended family. I feel grateful EVERY day for my life. But during today's bike ride, I focused on how grateful I felt for all of the lessons that I've learned so far.
I never thought that this journey would teach me SO much about myself, but it has! I've said from the beginning that it's about so much more than a weight issue. I've learned to tune in to that little voice inside my head, which for years it seems that I silenced. I've become very aware of what my strengths and weaknesses are, and how to use them to learn more about myself. The really good lessons have felt like a revelation or an AH-HA moment. The tougher lessons have been challenging. But I've realized that until I 'GET IT', I'll be re-visiting those lessons over and over again! I'm happy to say that I've made progress, which is a good thing!
When I joined SP almost 4 months ago, I was hoping to SPARK my motivation. Not only did I get my motivation back, but I also met some great people, that offered their friendship and support. And I feel VERY grateful for how my friends and this site have enhanced my life, and helped make this journey SO positive and rewarding.
One thing that I've learned, is that until I dealt with the feelings that I kept locked inside, the outside 'package' would NOT change. I've known that excess weight can be a symptom of other areas in my life that aren't balanced, and that's what I've been working on. If I always do what I did, I'll always get what I got! So I'm doing things differently, by working on myself from the inside out. I feel so grateful for all of the lessons, both good and challenging, because they've helped me move forward on my journey. I've learned that until I pulled the weeds from my garden, there's no room for the flowers to grow and bloom! And I'm feeling something that I haven't felt for awhile - pride!
Friday, November 20, 2009
Recently I've let life side-track my efforts. By doing that I've skipped breakfast on some mornings, and haven't consumed enough calories. As a result of that, the scale didn't budge, and I feel tired again. It started to dawn on me when I noticed that I take better care of our cats than I do of myself sometimes. I never miss feeding them! Also every day I make sure that my DH takes his vitamins and takes a large bottle of water with him to work, along with a healthy lunch. However there are days that I haven't taken my vitamins, or even come close to drinking all of my water. Webster's dictionary defines the word 'WORTH' as 'equal in value to' or 'deserving of'. So I asked myself, how could I be of less value than the 3 little furballs running around our house? Okay, I've learned my lesson as far as making my health and weight loss a priority. I can NOT neglect myself and expect results!
I know what works for me, and what doesn't. And skipping meals does NOT work! I happen to be a list-maker and a somewhat organized person, so I need to use those qualities to my advantage. I know the importance of planning ahead and being organized. For me, having a food plan in place is vital to my success. I use a monthly planner and once a week I sit down and write out the dinners for the week. I usually go to the farm stand once a week and stock up on fresh veggies, and then jot them down on my planner. I also love the idea of 'cook it once, eat it twice'. I always double the amount of brown rice or quinoa I cook, so that I have it for a second meal. And it also freezes well. I do the same thing when I roast chicken, so that I have dinner for another night. Tonight I'm making chicken with lemon, garlic, and artichokes. I'll bake 4 pieces, and we'll have the leftovers on Sunday night.
I'm trying to be organized and stay a step ahead. I soak my steel cut oats in water overnight in the fridge, to cut down on cooking time. And I make enough for 2 breakfasts, so that it's ready to go on mornings that I don't have the time. I also try to stay a step ahead with my yogurt. Because of a food intolerance, I have to drain the whey from my plain yogurt, so it's like Greek yogurt. I keep a large container in the fridge, and when I eat the last of it, I drain the next container. I try to keep up on these things so that having a healthy meal is convenient.
The last couple of weeks I've gone for my bike rides in the early evening, but this isn't working because I'm coming home in the dark. I need to get back to my routine of early morning bike rides, which I really enjoy, followed by breakfast. I just can't let anything side-track me in the morning. I've realized that nothing is more important than my health, so I need to make the effort. I also know that being on SP helps keep me focused and accountable, plus I really enjoy the contact with my friends! So I need to log on every day, even for a little while, if time is short.
The last week or so I've fallen off of my 'organized wagon', so to speak. And the results were a big zero on the scale today. That's okay - lesson learned! I know that I can't expect results if I don't take the time to do the work. And that includes eating properly, drinking my water, and taking my vitamins. I need to focus on what works for me, which is being organized and make it a priority. A big part of this journey is realizing that I'm WORTH the effort that it takes to succeed!
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