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The Things I Can Do

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

It hasn't been easy - getting "back on the wagon" after vacation. And in the middle of a plateau, no less. But if anything is going to jar me out of this feeling of being stuck, it's up to me to figure out what that is and DO IT.

Despite having a couple of bad food weekends, and the ever present siren-song of the pumpkin scones that call me ALL DAY from the Starbuck's down the street, I have managed some really good and positive behaviours over the past couple of weeks that I think deserve some attention as well.

When things are crappy and my food intake is a little out of control, one thing that I can ALWAYS manage to do is drink my 8 glasses (or more) of water a day. It's a relatively easy and small task to complete - especially since it involves more consumption and not less - and it makes a huge difference in satiety levels and overall heath and well-being. Even if it means chugging 4 glasses of water right before bed, knowing that I'll be up at 2am trodding to the bathroom, I do it. Because I can. And all the little things that I CAN do add up.

Last week sucked for exercise. Despite my best efforts to resume my schedule of running and swimming and zumba, I ended up skipping 2 running days, only swam for 30 minutes out of an hour and then missed my long-run Sunday because of an impromptu trip to Iowa. And I realize that most of my reason for shorting myself on exercise had to do with spending time with my boy. NEED to get that in check. Because ultimately, spending time with him is detracting from spending time on me. And one of my reasons for wanting to spend so much time on me is maintaining a hot bod for him. So I'm not helping either of us by skipping out on my runs. Not to mention that I'm SUPPOSED to be training right now for my 15K in November. So yeah - I had a bad week, but it only made me miss it that much more. Which is an exciting revelation when I really think about it. Even though Mondays are typically an off-day for me for exercise, because I didn't get my run in on Sunday I KNEW I had to go home from work and run - not just because I needed to get a training run in, but because I felt the urge to get out there and pound the pavement. I raced home and threw on my running clothes before I could think twice about it. Even though I was in my usual state of work daze and exhaustion from the day, which usually lands me on the couch with dinner and the new Fall TV lineup, I headed out into the already crisp, cool night just as it was getting dark, and I RAN. And I felt like I was flying. So I opted to do an extra lap around the park. Because I could. 6.5 miles later I was literally grinning I was so happy with myself - and I felt SO good. 4 miles last week was HARD. And I had just knocked out an additional 2.5 miles after a week of nothing. So what has this taught me? Not only that my body is AMAZING, but never, ever to doubt my abilities. I can do whatever I put my mind to - and when I really, truly want it, I work that much harder for it. So if I'm having a bad week, I just have to remember to WANT it, and to hang on to that Spark. It's a small thing that I CAN do - but it makes a huge difference in my spirit and hopefully (eventually) the outcome on the scale.

Food has been a problem since my return. 3 weeks away had ballooned my stomach again and I got used to eating a lot more, whenever I wanted and indulging in sweet treats because "I was on vacation". Even when you adopt the 80/20 rule for healthy eating when you're away, that 20% becomes a bit of a bear to tackle when it's time to get back to 100% effort. And to be honest, while I was away, it was more like 50/50. But one thing that I have going for me is that I DO love food. And that makes it easy for me at home because I want to get back to trying new things, cooking, tasting, and enjoying all of it. I know from experience that when I am unprepared, I don't eat very well. So I went out last week and got good food. I bought a ton of fruit, and healthy pasta and chicken sausages. Veggies for my lunches, and a whole case of yogurt. Last night I made the most delicious 5 Cheese Tortelloni & Chicken Sausage with a homemade tomato & pesto sauce (recipe is posted in Spark Recipes if you're interested). It was the most delicious thing EVER after my long run, and it made a full 6 servings, so I'm set for lunches for the rest of the week. Tonight I'm looking forward to going home and spending some time in the kitchen baking some herb & cheddar biscuits and a sweet treat of some cheesecake (Nikhil's favorite). It may sound indulgent, but I know that if I make it, I can make it healthier than buying it - and perhaps it will help to quell some of the treat cravings that I've had for far "calorically-pricier" items this past week. This is something that I can do. I don't always have the time available to me to cook every night - but by prepping things when I DO have a night off, sets me up for healthier choices for the rest of the week and gives me more options. It's a small thing that I CAN do, but it's a huge step in the right direction - and darn if it doesn't taste GREAT!

Regardless of what the scale says on Friday morning - I'm finding my way back and fighting hard to keep moving forward. All of the things I CAN do add up. And look at where I am! The number of things that I CAN do now that I couldn't do before is astounding. I'm looking forward to adding more CAN DOs to the list soon. Including running a 15K, losing another 10 pounds, fitting into a size medium and then small.

The thing is - I already know that I CAN do all of these things. It's only a matter of time until I prove it!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    TFS another great blog - so nice to know that the roller coast ride of healthy eating/living affects everyone!
    2105 days ago
    2106 days ago
  • WYND10
    You can because you have and you have because you can. :D

    2106 days ago
  • JIBBIE49
    2106 days ago
  • RIVER331
    What a great blog! Congratulations on keeping your perspective and even treating yourself a little better than usual with the baking! It's perfect for where you are right now. emoticon

    It's funny, I was just at the gym doing my runner training (C25K rookie runner), and along with all the other thoughts going through my mind was, "What's going to happen when this initial enthusiasm eventually wears down? Will I still be strong?"... of course I answered myself "Yes!" because like FREETHEGODDESS, I'm training my brain as well as my body - but when I read what you wrote here "So if I'm having a bad week, I just have to remember to WANT it, and to hang on to that Spark." it settled something in my chest. I CAN do this. I WILL do this.

    Thank You emoticon emoticon I'm subscribing to your blog emoticon
    2106 days ago

    Comment edited on: 9/24/2011 11:20:43 AM
    2106 days ago
  • ALOFA0509

    You are such a rock star!!!!! Keep it up sista emoticon
    2106 days ago
    Every day is a new day, and an opportunity to get back on track!
    2106 days ago
    I can totally relate to the occasional negative thought creeping back in. I hate when I miss my exercise now. I don't enjoy exercise yet (except for my Zumba class) but, I do like the "high" I get afterward from the satisfaction of actually doing it instead of sitting around.

    Why is it that when I miss several days of exercise I start thinking that I can't do the exercise anymore. Everytime I get on the treadmill to walk 5K I have to fight negative thoughts that I may not be able to do it. I know I CAN do it because I have done it 6 times now but, there is always that little battle in my head between the old negative thoughts and the new healthy, positive thoughts.

    I will be happy when I have trained my brain to drown out that negative voice all together.

    Glad you are back stronger than have a great attitude and much inspire me. Thanks for sharing!
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    2106 days ago
    I'm sorry you're struggling to get back on track, but I have to tell you that it is reassuring too!

    You've been so successful (and you are 1 of my 2 weight loss goddesses, you and 4A-Healthy-BMI) and you have really embraced the "this is a long haul, progress not perfection" idea that I try so desperately to do!

    I guess what I'm saying is that if you can be super successful like you without demanding perfection every second of every day, it gives me hope.
    2107 days ago
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    2108 days ago
    LOVE it!
    2108 days ago
    You've got it! I also sometimes fall back on getting at least water in - it's a small thing we can all do!
    2108 days ago
  • CAALAN23
    That's a strong inpirational spirit talking!

    2108 days ago
    I'm struggling with the same issues as you. I've been eating really badly. You're right it's all about being prepared. When I have good food choices I will make them. Being prepared is certainly something I can do! My exercise has been sporadic and not too intense lately. I need to step it up a notch. Thanks for your blog. I know the route I need to take but your insight helped to push the map up in my face. Have a great week.
    2108 days ago
    I am really proud of you. The fact that you didn't even gain on vacation is great. I think that time away, and having such an amazing trip, would make it hard for anyone to get back into the game, but you are BACK and you actually DID workout that first week back, no matter that you skipped a few. And look at you, running 6.5 this week!!!! I think the most important thing I've taken away from this blog is the part about not limiting yourself and also getting back on the wagon. You just are amazing!!
    2108 days ago
    Yup, you're through the worst of it now. :) I need to heed your advice about focusing on what I can do and what I am doing right. And you're right - I am doing a lot of the things I can. That's just going to have to be good enough for a while. :)
    2108 days ago
    Woo Hoo! And I will have to check out your recipe. Good job on the run-I am debating 5K or 15K? Still contemplating.
    Isn't it amazing what our bodies can do??
    2108 days ago
  • -POOKIE-
    *smiles* a much more upbeat blog!
    2108 days ago
    You can do it!!! Great blog!
    2108 days ago
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