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    BRIARD   13,747
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Miscellany

Saturday, August 03, 2013

I haven't had much time for blogging lately although I enjoy this chance to connect with SparkFriends and to organize my thoughts about my journey. Truth be told, I don't have time right now either, but I am making a few minutes!!

Things have been hectic lately. New position at work is taking additional time and adding stress to my life. Overall, it is a positive but it does change the amount of time I have for myself and taking care of my stress levels is even more important than usual. On top of that, I've started taking a class again, towards Applied Behavior Analysis certification. I enjoy it, but it is another time stealer. I am behind already and it is only about the second week into the course. Fitting in fitness, cooking, self-care, time with friends and Burak all become harder to do. Hanging in there and I am proud of myself for the consistency I've had even under the demands in my life.

I'm taking part in the "Back On Track" August challenge by focusing on yoga for the month. I always tell people that this is the foundation of all my other weight loss and fitness success. I truly believe that. By even doing a little bit of yoga every day, I feel like I can manage my arthritis (in both feet and which was debilitating when first diagnosed... I know how to manage it better now) and it helps manage my stress. Without it, I wouldn't be running, that is 100% certain. However, lately I've been doing the bare minimum, typically a 15 minute relaxation routine before bed. For August, I've decided to do at least 30 minutes daily, and to push my challenge level, getting back into routines that focus on strength, balance and flexibility, not just gentle relaxation poses. So far, so good! For the first three days in August, I've stuck to this plan and I've been doing Intermediate level poses (based on the iPhone app I use, called Yoga Studio). What surprises me is how well I'm doing with the Intermediate routines. I'm challenged and a few of the poses are really tough, but I'm DOING it! I just think back to where I was in January when I started yoga (before I even started losing weight) and I'm amazed at how far I've come. Especially since for the last couple months I haven't been challenging myself with yoga at all.

Other than that, I'm just trying to maintain my consistency with the other healthy habits I've been forming. I've been doing strength daily for a while now, or occasionally if I do a full body workout in a single day, I'll take the following day off. That's been a nice change and makes it easier for me to manage my time. I'm still loving running although this week I haven't done much. I managed to get blisters on my toes on a walk this week and I didn't feel like running would help the situation, plus I've just been so time crunched that my cardio time has been limited. Silly me went to the beach with my students the other day and I didn't bother rinsing the salt and sand off my feet before going for an hour-and-a-half walk with Burak and a friend... blisters in between my toes was the result. Ugh. Feeling better now and I plan on running tomorrow.

The real accomplishment over the last few days is that I've been staying strong around emotional eating. My two biggest weaknesses are social eating and emotional/boredom eating. Thursday was an extremely stressful afternoon at work. Usually when I leave work, I'm able to leave the stress behind too, but this time it came home with me in a big way. Long story short, I work with teenagers with profound autism and one of my students injured one of my staff members. The rest of my staff (5 people total) in my classroom were also emotionally affected by the situation. When I got home I REALLY wanted to open the fridge to cope with the stress. I did a good job staying on track. Yesterday, on top of still recovering from the stress, I got my monthly visitor and that seemed to justify binging on junk food (I still want a burger and fries, PLEASE?) but I stayed the course. I did get a frozen meal but I stuck to a single serving and logged my calories, and added veggies to it. It's been ages since I had a convenience meal and it satisfied that part of me that wanted the indulgent burger, fries and shake without knocking me off course. I also didn't reach for a beer to cope with the stress. I have a healthy relationship with alcohol; it isn't a problem area for me however it sure would have taken the edge off my stress on Thursday evening so I am pleased that I chose not to since it didn't fit in with my meal plan for the day.

I guess I've rambled long enough especially since I am procrastinating about many other things right now. Last note, part of my motivation to stay strong right now is to keep watching the scale head in the right direction. Only 12.3 pounds left to get to my goal weight!! I'm so excited to be getting into the home stretch with this phase of my journey. If I can get to my goal weight by early October (ahead of my goal of my 40th birthday in late October), I want to go climb Katahdin Mountain to celebrate. Let's see if I can keep strong and make it ahead of time before the mountain closes in October.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TONBEN 8/8/2013 11:08PM

    Great blog, you're doing amazing! Can't wait to see pics of you celebrating hitting your goal, its just around the corner!
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BRIARD 8/4/2013 6:20PM

    Thank you so much. Even though we have different lives in different places with unique challenges, it seems like we both struggle with some of the same stuff on our journeys! You inspire me too... when I don't feel like a workout or sticking with my eating plan, I sometimes think of your amazing beach walking half-marathon and kick myself into gear!

As hard as my job can be (and yes, it is also very, very fun! I love working with my students and wouldn't trade it for a much easier classroom.), I get to leave at the end of the day. As a parent, your job is 24/7. Never let those people who think it's about bad parenting get you down. I know parents who give every ounce of energy, time, patience and love they have to their autistic child and still have to face the difficulties of problem behaviors, and in some extreme circumstances even placing their loved child into residential care. I hope your son continues to get the services he needs to keep making progress. It is good to hear that he was able to do so much last year... as we both know, motivation is everything and it sounds like that teacher was able to motivate him. The organization I work for uses a relationship-based philosophy so I know exactly how important having the right teacher for the student can be... with a teacher who demonstrates that they like the kid, the kid will often start to flourish.

Keep up all the great work YOU are doing... from your weight loss journey to the tough parenting to putting up with your relationship stress as M moves out... I'm cheering for you!!

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KBLASEN 8/3/2013 7:32PM

    You can do this, you are doing great! You are a wonderful inspiration for me! It is hard to find this elusive balance between making health a priority and all the WORK and time that entails and everything else in life that needs attention too!

I like your goal of focusing on working yoga since it fits well into your life, adds the relaxation factor and also helps you to be able to be able to do the other fitness when you can get it in!

I don't know if I said so, but my son O is autistic. He has Asperger's. Living with him is a lot of fun at times, but also very, very stressful when things aren't going well. I have a lot of emotional eating around dealing with tantrums and problems he has at school or in the neighborhood at times so I can understand the powerful urge to use food to self-soothe. He can be smart, super funny and very polite and he knows everything under the sun related to science, space and how things work. But, he's almost 11 and on a bad day he could easily melt down, kicking and screaming on the floor and wreck his room over something simple like a request to pick up his things. I get a lot of flak from family and people who don't get it and think it is bad parenting or he just needs a good spanking. You have to be a very special person to work in a classroom with autistic students, since it is very stressful at times--I'm sure a lot of fun too--but teachers definitely aren't paid enough for how hard the work in an autistic classroom is. I know last year I was very thankful he got a teacher who he had a little crush on and he worked very hard for her and made honor roll and went from hardly reading to almost grade level and above grade level in things he likes by the end of the year. He was in an Autism only classroom with only 4 and each had an aid so that helped too.

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