Progress isn't necessarily shown on the scale first.
Monday, February 27, 2012
For Christmas my brother and sister-in-law gave me and my sister (and our significant others) an evening at Boca, a very upscale restaurant here in Cincinnati, on a date to be determined by coordinating our schedules. That day was this past Saturday, 2/25 (its really hard to get Saturday reservations). One of my goals here at SP was to be so accustomed to eating a healthy diet that I would make healthy choices at the restaurant.
About two weeks before the event, I started looking on the Boca website at their menu, so that I could start thinking about how I wanted the evening to go. Well, I got completely unnerved by their rich foods with sugars and potatoes and sauces and so forth. I posted a 'help' message on the Cincinnati Team message board, hoping someone had been there and could advise me on what to do. Best advice: exercise that day and the day after, eat what sounds good (within reason) and enjoy the evening (and the brussels sprouts are a must-have, even if you hate them - which I do). So I tried not to think about it for a while; just concentrated on my daily menus and workouts. But...
On Friday, the day before the dinner, I started to panic. I felt that I had made some progress, although the scale didn't show any loss. I could feel that I was using muscle instead of joints when I moved and I *thought* my clothes were fitting a tiny bit better, although without the scale moving I wasn't quite sure. The week before, I had worked hard at forcing myself to ignore the numbers on the scale and just keep at it. It would have been so easy to just say, "Oh, forget it". So when I felt there may have been some progress (screw the scale!) I did NOT want to blow it at some fancy-schmancy dinner!
So on that Friday, I posted another 'help' message on the Panic message board; what should I do?!? I'm afraid! I don't want to screw this up! Thankfully, I received some quick responses with much the same advice. Do the best you can, enjoy yourself, and remember one day does not negate the entire program. So, my husband and I reviewed the restaurant's menu together once again, and made some (soft) decisions about what looked good without going too far out into left field.
The time came to get dressed. I had a pair of black slacks and a choice of three tops to put with them (no way was I going to buy another outfit at this size!). My wonderful husband, daughter, and son (this particular son NEVER lies to me about my appearance - even if I want him to) chose the red and black top. Now, the last time I had tried any of these on was at Christmas. At that time, I would never be caught out in public - alive or dead - in two of them, and the third I had worn to a cocktail party with one of those full-body "undergarment" Spanks things that smooth out the back-fat rolls. All three choices were made of that T-shirt-like, soft, clingy fabric that is totally unforgiving. Decision made. The red/black - IF it fit. I got dressed, looked in the mirror, and couldn't decide. All I could see was fat. Rolls (plural) of fat into which the fabric settled. That's all I ever see. I went downstairs and asked my husband. No, you look very nice - no I don't see fat rolls. Yeah, well he lies to make me feel good about myself all the time. So I asked my son. Him: 'You look nice, Mom. That was the right choice after all.' Me: Really? What about all these fat rolls around my bra strap? I have an undergarment I can put on to smooth them out. Him: 'What fat rolls?' Me: HUH? Him: There aren't any. Me: Are you sure? Him: Oh, for God's sake. You look nice. Go have fun ! So I went back to the mirror. Oh, I could MAKE the rolls show up if I tried, but just standing there...Well, I'll be darned...I look kinda good...SO. We went out to dinner, I had salad, veggies, and fish (Yes, the brussels sprouts were divine!!), and of course creme brulee (oh, well, its my fave). Did not feel bad about a single thing that went into my mouth, and the portions were NOT distorted, so I also did not feel as though I was going to explode. I was relaxed, and I had a great time!!!
But wait! There's more! So the next day - Sunday - I was trying to decide what to put on to go to the park for a walk with my husband (didn't want to put on workout clothes for a walk with him) and reached for the corduroy pants I had purchased to wear Thanksgiving day. When I bought them, I wasn't sure what size I would need (ordered from a catalogue), so I ordered both a size 18 and a 16. When they arrived, the 16 was way too small (couldn't even pull them all the way up), but I decided to keep both anyway, and HOPE the smaller pair would fit before the end of winter. Well, with Saturday night's success, I thought, why not give the smaller ones a try? Guess what! They FIT!! And not just "for a little while, but I'll have to take them off when we get home because I can't really breathe fit", but I wore them ALL DAY with NO discomfort. HAH! Take that, scale!!!
There are more ways than the scale numbers to track your progress. Find the one that will make you dance around the kitchen while your family smiles indulgently at you. The one that allows you to go out to a very nice restaurant without feeling self-conscious the entire evening. The one that motivates you to eat fruit salad and a piece of whole grain toast for breakfast the morning after a rich, wonderful meal at a VERY upscale restaurant. For me, there is nothing more motivating than pulling something from the back of my closet and having it fit.
Next up: West Side Story. Goal - perhaps something new to wear? Or maybe I'll go shopping in my closet. The next day, the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Goal: fit comfortably in the seat at Music Hall.