Thursday, February 03, 2011
WEEK FIVE CHALLENGE - ENDS 02.05.2011
Main Challenge : Picture Confidence for 30 Points or 0 Points:
BONUS : Double Meat-less Patty for 10 Points or 0 Points:
TOTAL POINTS for WEEK FIVE:
MAIN CHALLENGE: Picture Confidence
Find an old picture of yourself that you feel confident in, and blog about it. Why are you happy in that picture, what makes you proud/confident about what you look like in the image? Think about that time, and try to figure out what you can do to bring that feeling along with you through the rest of your journey. You may not be at the finish line just yet, but remember that confidence should start now, be proud of everything that you’ve already accomplished!
BONUS: Double Meat-less Patty
This week, go veggie two FULL days for bonus points. During those two days fish, eggs, and dairy are allowed, but otherwise your meals and snacks for those two days must be vegetarian.
This girl turned into one who feared exercise, and ridicule from having so much skin exposed. But before that...
I took delight in feeling the rush of moving so fast, gliding on my skates. I was probably 5 years old in this picture, it's hard to tell because I was bigger than other girls my age.
But back to this image:
Cheeks flushed from exertion! Hair in a ponytail! Wild from the wind! Highlighted from being kissed by the sun! With the delicious warmth of Southern California on my bare shoulders! I remember liking playing outside. I felt freedom in the speed, and grace in my movement! And after this, older, it was on my banana-seat bike and after that, older still, wind in my hair driving (speeding) with the windows down. I was confident because I was having fun using my body. Exercise feels good. That's what I'll remember for the rest of my journey. And if I find the speed from self-propelled movement, I'll avoid speeding tickets!! Yay!! HEheheee! (I have rediscovered this, in the high that I get after dancing in my Zumba classes, etc. I'm going to go do that tonight, in fact!)
Bonus: I guess I need to do this Friday and Saturday, since those are the only days left for the challenge! LOL! Glad I found out about this today!
Thursday, February 03, 2011
This may as well be titled, "Perfecting Habits During Stress". I've been strangely prone to unusual overeating on days that I'm care-giving for my mother-in-law who is bedridden, struggling with cancer. Chocolate is my "indulgence" of choice. But there is only so much of that around, so it's also been salty chips, comfort meals, miscellaneous candy, and mom's favorite: donuts.
For the complete picture, let me set the scene... Almost everything in her house could be classified as "junk food", and while that makes it challenging to construct nutritious meals, I do that all the time, so it's not impossible. Since I live with my husband, and nothing is off limits food-wise, my cupboards are not the pinnacle of Healthy Food Mastery. I have, however, internalized the SparkDiet Strategy #3 about "Setting Up Shop" ever since I first read about it in 2008, and I do things to purchase wisely, promote healthy convenience, and (usually) prevent temptation by not purchasing unhealthy foods that are devoid of nutrition. (Except for the 2 candy bars I picked up last night.)
I've been over there less than half a dozen times under this circumstance, and I think each time I'm improving on eating within my ideal nutritional ranges, limiting less healthful foods, increasing activity.
Mainly, I've gone from out-of-control (untracked) eating to implementing moderation, increasing knowledge of my behaviors and spending more time on self observation and reflection.
Success #1: I tracked all my food today!! (I didn't this weekend, or weekend of Jan 15th, and the days when I provided care in the middle of the week were incomplete tracking.)
Success #2: I talked to myself about my choices, even each time that I chose to eat a cookie, then another, and some cake, and a yogurt dessert, then ice cream, and when I was searching for mom's secret Dove candy stash...and then remembered & retrieved my own Twix from my purse. I was thinking about it instead of mindlessly doing it. (Wait, is this worse? LOL!) I also reviewed my daily nutrition tallies, exactly how much I went over in calories and how eliminating just a couple of the poor sugary food choices I listed above could have kept me inside my ranges - - without berating myself, mind you!
[By the way, after I posted this blog and looked at the daily totals from the nutrition tracker in this link, I realized that I skimped in accounting for some of my foods, and after some more realistic and honest additions, I went over my cals, carbs and fat by twice as much as I originally thought. Valuable info for really knowing what's happening during my intake!! ]
Success #3: When sent for donuts I didn't purchase a kind that I liked. She likes cake donuts, I was raised (haha) on donut holes, cinnamon roll donuts, and that kind of melty-in-your-mouth-fluffy sensations that cake donuts don't provide. Bonus is the feeling of complete family warm fuzzies locked in those molecules of sugar and fat because there were family weekend traditions from before my parents divorced. Plus, instead of buying a dozen, I got just the one she asked for. (Last Saturday, I got the variety dozen that she asked for, with lots of raised donuts and ended up eating 3 that day.)
Success #4: I brought my own lunch choices. (I didn't eat them though, I ate leftover taco stuff, and corn tortilla quesadilla, then ate the dinner that my SIL planned.) But I will next time. I will also focus on my usual method of thinking of filling veggie servings first, then adding other nutrient components. So instead of 10 sugar/candy/cake choices and 3 fruit/veg servings, I'll show something that's completely reverse.
Success #5: I left. I left to go exercise. (My husband was also there this time.) I left to go exercise in a Zumba class with every variable being uncomfortably different: new instructor, gym location, day and time, etc. I don't know why it is so difficult for me to do what I need. Even after I left, part of my brain was working on reasons I should stay there to help her, to help my husband take care of her (no, to take care of her so that my husband wouldn't have to; or to stay to take better care of her which is also a thought poking around in there).
I posted this last one in a thread on my SparkRally Cincinnati May 2011 team called "What I'm doing to be ACTIVE today"... And I realized how very hard it was, how even now my stomach is knotting in anxiety, to go exercise for ME when I feel like I could be doing something for someone else.
I realized... OH MY GOSH... I am one of THOSE people, the ones that I've encouraged, and shared comments with, and maybe offered advice to, countless times here on SparkPeople when they post a blog about running after their kids, husband, family, obligations and volunteers, in circles when exhausted, and still feeling guilty for a 10 minute walk alone. Then I remember how I used to be a person that had difficulty saying "No" and often took on more than I could provide (driving me to work hard to rise to the occasion and attempt to over-achieve). I remembered how I once read a book about being assertive, I once taught myself how to do that, and once didn't know how to think that way.
And even after all of that, I have to REALLY talk myself into going out for an hour to exercise. Then I talk myself into it being worth it, telling myself the same thing I've told others, about how it will make me stronger for them, for myself, relieve stress, and enable me to do even more. That reassures me. But it also reaffirms that I *am* one of those people. Not that there's anything wrong with that. ;D
Next time I will strive to reach my ideals even more, and again after that. And if I am not 100% successful, I will learn more, and modify my behavior and keep at it. That is how I lost my first 100 pounds, and that is how I will lose the next!
Tuesday, February 01, 2011
I falsely gained weight over the weekend (sodium and sporadic eating), so that when I weighed in today, I "magically" lost 4 pounds. LOL. What it boiled down to was that my first official weight for February is 269 (which is my lowest weight for January).
I don't put much stock into what the scale says (especially if I'm going to keep weighing myself every day). However, as a general OVERALL trend, I think that if I'm building muscle and losing fat through consistent exercise and healthy food choices, it will eventually show up in the numbers.
After all, BMI teaches us that weight isn't everything:
I returned to basics this year and planned out what I believe would be my weight if I lost 1 pound a week or 2 pounds a week (those #s are on my SparkPage), and I weigh myself at the beginning of the month to see how it hits those benchmarks. When I added my 269 weight, I noticed it was EXACTLY THE SAME as my 2009 February weigh in.
(Copied from my front page--)
New year, new range! Here's the 1lb loss/2 lb loss ranges, but my goal is to lose 75 lbs (hit 199) in 2009:
FEB 2009--271/267 (actual 269 2/2/09)***
MAR 2009--267/259 (actual 264 3/5/09)
APR 2009--263/251 (actual 261 4/13/09)
MAY 2009--259/243 (actual 257 5/5/09)
JUN 2009--255/235 (actual 258 6/1/09)
JUL 2009--251/227 (actual 255 7/1/09)
AUG 2009--247/219 (actual 256 8/3/09)
_______adjusting 1, 2 pound loss nums_______
SEP 2009--252/248 (actual 252 9/2/09)
OCT 2009--247/238 (actual 245 10/1/09)
NOV 2009--243/230 (actual 243 11/2/09)
DEC 2009--238/220 (actual 238 12/1/09)
**End of 2009- 239: LOST 31 pounds!!**
At first I was a little disappointed, despite meeting ALL of my January 2011 goals. I had a twinge of feeling like I had "lost" the progress of two whole years. But in the next instant I remembered that I've gained lots of knowledge and experience during that time. It's helped make me a better person, realize my fears and self-imposed limitations, and break through them! I am stronger in so many ways, and have more opportunities stretching out in front of me!
Then my blood really started pumping when I realized I could COMPETE AGAINST MYSELF! I will track more minutes than I did in 2009! I will be more consistent with my healthier food choices (though I'm still believe in flexibility and not restricting foods completely)! And through those victories, I will probably lose more than 31 pounds this year. My goal is -50 (especially since I hope to gain some weight in my muscles!)!
[That's right! Look over your shoulder, self from 2009! HEhehee.]
Tuesday, February 01, 2011
With only 17 minutes remaining in January, I realized that I was (coincidentally) 17 minutes short of my 20,000 total tracked fitness minutes goal. If I had worked out on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, I would have easily overshot my goal... But now it was down to the wire.
In my nightgown and slippers, after showering from my cardio and 100 PushUp Challenge earlier in the night, I realized that I could still do my 200 Squat Challenge minutes, and use approximately 20 minutes to do it. I walked during the "rest" in between the sets to make sure that I was actually keeping my heart rate up, making it feel more like all of the minutes were truly FITNESS minutes. (*Note: Since Spark doesn't add my Strength Training minutes to the total Fitness Minutes, I do it manually under the Cardio section, and I use the same number for amount of minutes and calories burned.)
The last set is a minimum of 25, but you go until exhaustion of "good form", so I hit 55 in a row! :) That made today's total of 116 squats (now), and 112 wall push-ups (earlier after my cardio).
(For background info, here's a link to my blog where I hit my previous January goal for SparkPoints and set up this one. www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo
urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=3946239 ... I'm officially at 1,072 fitness minutes for the month of January! I may want to attempt hitting over 1,000 minutes for every month this year! Wait, no, 1,111 for each month in '11! :D )
ALL OF MY JANUARY GOALS:
GOYAAM & SP
Plan for Jan '11:
x Track Food, eat ranges! - - ~DONE~
x Strength Train! - - ~DONE~
x 30 mins daily activity! - - ~DONE, mostly~
x Work SparkPoints for next SparkTrophy! - - ~DONE~
Now I'm ready to plan my February goals! I think I might do the 28 day Spark bootcamp, FINALLY :)
Thursday, January 27, 2011
I danced like mad at a new instructor/gym's Zumba class. And I shook my hips so hard it was as if I was flicking off the negative energy. And before the class, since I got there early to make sure I had a pass before it filled up, I walked for almost 40 minutes, venting my earlier frustrating exchange with my husband through the keypad into my phone as I actually wrote a blog. But no one needs to read a recount of uncomfortable misunderstandings, miscommunication and disconnects.
So I'll tell you about my exercise!
It made me feel good!
It made me feel tired & sore, but in a FANTASTIC way that actually gives me more energy!
It made me able to concentrate on the good that my body can do!
It made my blood pulse through my body faster and faster!
It made me smile.
It brought me a compliment from a stranger in the class.
It made me able to say that I've completed another day in my 100 Day/30 minute activity challenge -- Except that I've done 98 minutes today!
I can't say that my hips were the most talented, coordinated in the class. But I can say that they mostly did what I asked, and they're in the top 5! My eyes were closed for more of this class than any before, as I caught onto the instructor's steps and did the reps while feeling the music. When I did catch glimpse, even though I was the largest and almost most round woman there, I wasn't disappointed by my body or what it did. Instead I shimmied extra, perfectly. And while it takes more energy and strength to move my 270 pounds around than someone that weighs 125, *YOU*COULD*TELL* because when I moved, I moooooved. And it was graceful.
This is my hip. Pretty!
This is a Nike hip in an older advertisement that says:
return to puberty
when I'm in dance class.
Music affects them like hormones
Making them crazy
and prone to DRAMA
And I don't understand them
And sometimes they
don't understand themselves
When the music stops
They're still charged
Don't touch me
Sparks will fly.
JUST DO IT.
...Except, I do understand them, and they love to be touched! LOL!
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