VAJRA82's SparkPeople Blog VAJRA82's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Tearful, Hopeful, Heartfelt - return to SP **Warning: this post contains some honest discussion of adult topics. Out of respect for those who might find this offensive, I ask you to simply stop reading here. Thanks.** <BR> <BR> I'm not sure how to start a blog that necessarily confesses that I didn't keep my commitment to write weekly, login daily, or continue to exercise and eat well. How do I follow my Victory declaration six weeks ago with the news that I am back at my starting weight? <BR> <BR> Fortunately, despite these facts,... Sun, 13 Feb 2011 11:35:18 EST Divine Deluge Sparklers, this is my 40th blog post. I can hardly believe that I have stuck with something with 100% consistency - or how easy it actually was. Easy because I never decided to do anything for 40 days. I just chose to do something for one day, forty times. <BR> <BR> I also cannot believe the change that has occurred in my life during this time. To say that it has been a turning point is a bit modest. It is as though the storm cloud in which I had taken up residence for the previous year has ... Sun, 2 Jan 2011 17:52:22 EST For the Love of Food I recall, as a child, a daily conversation with my mother when I would wander into the kitchen and she would shoo me out. <BR> <BR> "What are you doing?" <BR> "I'm hungry." <BR> "You're not hungry. You're bored." <BR> "I'm hungry." <BR> "Well, have a glass of orange juice if you're hungry." <BR> "No, but I'm *hungry*. I don't want something to drink. I'm hungry!" <BR> "You're not hungry. You're bored. Get out of the kitchen." <BR> <BR> It was most often iterative, as I would try to return ... Sat, 1 Jan 2011 19:37:19 EST Self-Talk - a Script If you're a regular reader, you have surely noticed that my weight loss blog tends to focus less on calories in and out and more on...well, the metaphysical weight I carry. For me, that's what this journey is really about. I have learned, for example, that how I feel about my body affects how I see it more than vice versa. In other words, there have been times in my life when I felt great about my appearance when I weighed significantly more than other times when I felt utterly unpresentable.... Fri, 31 Dec 2010 21:53:57 EST Dreaming for a Fresh New Year About three years ago, I returned to a small town abroad where I had lived in high school after a five-year absence. When I saw my boyfriend's mother, she gave an enormous smile which quickly faded as she put both of her hands on my face to try to smooth out my forehead. The topography between my eyebrows- two deep valleys flanking a fleshy hill- presumably told her everything she needed to know about how I was doing and what had become of my life since we last embraced. I was twenty-five yea... Thu, 30 Dec 2010 20:13:28 EST The Re-Start I used to say that "nobody rows crew because they like it. You have to *need* it or you just wouldn't bother." There are a lot of reasons why I believed that crew was a sport for the irrationally committed. Getting up at 4:40 am 6 days a week in college, showing up for my first class of the day knowing that nobody wanted me to sit next to them because I was smelly from practice, spending 3 hours wet in thirty-four degree weather (diaper rash AND frostbite. awesome.), and the 30-hour-a-week ti... Wed, 29 Dec 2010 16:03:57 EST The Vajra - or, The Tale of the Blue Dude on the Left As you may have noticed, I have finally put up a picture. No, it's not a picture of my face (professional conflicts prevent that sort of thing). But, I like to think, it is nontheless an image of me. <BR> <BR> I hesitated and deliberated whether I should use this image because I was afraid other Sparklers would perceive it as angry. He has a wrathful expression and a stance that makes it clear he means business. Heck, he comes with his own flames. How would my Vajrapani - that is this Buddha... Tue, 28 Dec 2010 15:07:16 EST The Exciting Part About two weeks ago, I checked myself into an artificial rehab. I told Friend he'd have to take a raincheck for when I got done examining myself six weeks later. I sat myself down and faced some unattractive questions: Why did I have no idea what I wanted from Friend? Why was it that despite not being able to say whether I was attracted to him or whether I was interested in him, was I certain that things would continue to escalate if I kept seeing him? Why was this always - ALWAYS- what happe... Mon, 27 Dec 2010 08:57:28 EST "Change Your Mind, Change Your World" I have been giving an imaginary speech since Friend kissed me two weeks ago, and every time it changes. <BR> <BR> Sometimes, it's spoken in the voice of a Me that would rather leap than continue wondering what is beyond the cliff, who finds indecision the most uncomfortable option of all. She tells herself and then tells Friend that we're just going to have an adventure and see what happens without weighing the coulds and shoulds of it all. She opts to live rather than plan. <BR> <BR> This ... Sun, 26 Dec 2010 11:27:28 EST Progress First things first, I simply have to share the following observation: my arms look effin' amazing today! I guess it's due in part to a month of swimming and in part due to pushing myself in an upper body workout earlier this week, but....dayum! Where did that valley between my shoulder and arm come from? <BR> <BR> I am noticing more and more things that make me smile and it's keeping my hopes alive while my patience with my weight and waist wears thin. And I really appreciate all the encoura... Sat, 25 Dec 2010 22:10:13 EST Tinkering in My Workshop As I have been reflecting on my retreat from the world, it occurs to me that it is not uncommon for me to use the Winter as a time for repairs. In fact, in years past, the Winter has frequently been the high point of my fitness for the year. And this year, especially, I have holed myself up as much as possible to reflect, make improvements, and prepare for a Spring-like renewal. <BR> <BR> Last night, I really worked my butt off on my strength training workout. I'm not as strong as I once was... Fri, 24 Dec 2010 17:54:50 EST The Final Day of Nonsense Today was totally pig-out day 2. Hell, I'm even munching chocolate while I'm typing this and getting ready to get dinner out with a friend. <BR> <BR> But I've decided to change course. <BR> <BR> Way back when (see: <link><BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=3808640 </link> ), I decided I couldn't deal with the diet that gave me results in the past. I didn't want to hear a word about chicken. <BR> <BR> Well, I'm feeling differently, now. I've bought a b... Thu, 23 Dec 2010 16:02:43 EST Fantasy Chasing Well, today was pretty exciting. The official end of DADT makes me so happy, I just don't know what to say. <BR> <BR> My interview this morning went well, overall, although there are some moments that replay in my mind while I wince. Alas. I think the boss I'm courting is interested in bringing me on board, though, and now I'm just waiting to hear whether there's room for me. Fingers crossed! <BR> <BR> And, I received Christmas presents - the only ones I'll be getting- from my mother in th... Wed, 22 Dec 2010 20:28:50 EST 4-Week Review It has officially been 28 days since I started making changes in my life, and it's time to revisit my short term goals. <BR> <BR> (1) 30 minutes of cardio, 6 days a week - I have totally blown this one away. True, I pretty much have had a 5-day week each time, but my fitness has increased enough that 40 minutes is a minimum for any workout. I'm really feeling good about the progress in my fitness, and spent last night's bike ride staring at my arms. I have some muscle showing - tee hee! <BR... Tue, 21 Dec 2010 11:03:49 EST Reality Bites Sometimes it just seems like it's a lot of work. And by "a lot", I mean too much. So many calories cut, so many sacrifices, so many long, hard tiny an impact. <BR> <BR> I know it's going to be patience that sees me through to victory, but after nearly 4 weeks of concentrated effort, I would have hoped for more significant results. We all know small changes add up, so it seems like significant changes should add up like whoa. Alas, there is nothing at all "like whoa" about my o... Mon, 20 Dec 2010 07:48:20 EST Moving On This felt like the shortest weekend ever. I suppose part of that was that I was catching up on much lost sleep last week and part of it was all the time I spent daydreaming about Friend. <BR> <BR> Thumbs down. <BR> <BR> I didn't get nearly enough done of my high priority stuff, and now I'm starting off the new week without enough sleep, without meals carefully prepared, and behind a deadline for work. <BR> <BR> Crappers. <BR> <BR> I am too exhausted to think clearly, so I guess I'm going ... Sun, 19 Dec 2010 22:15:00 EST Bucket List A soundtrack for today's blog: <link> </link> <BR> <BR> We've all heard people speak about what they want to do before they die. Maybe you have a bucket list of your own. Skydive! See Paris! Write a book! <BR> <BR> But many of us have another list. Before we can even think about all the things we're going to do before we die, we have a whole list of things we have to do before we live. <BR> <BR> I want to see Hawaii! But first, of course, I'll have to... Sat, 18 Dec 2010 20:26:09 EST Withdrawal Why can't I just have a little bit o' boy? Yes, I think that'd be fiiiiine. I mean, I've made such amazing progress in just the past few days, I can probably figure out this whole happy-on-my-own business *while* kissing Friend. No biggie. <BR> <BR> -4 hours later- <BR> <BR> I reallly have to stop thinking about kissing Friend and get some sleep. <BR> <BR> -3 hours later- <BR> <BR> Seriously. I have to stop thinking about kissing Friend and finish that project for the client. <BR> <BR> -... Fri, 17 Dec 2010 19:59:27 EST Table of Contents I've embarked on a very special journey that begins with a 6-week retreat of sorts. While the world is cold and quiet, I am digging deep and using each day as an opportunity to investigate, examine, and vanquish the things that hold me back. It's like I'm hosting a one-woman residential rehab program. :) <BR> <BR> If this story were to be told in its entirety, it would begin weeks ago when I decided to try again. Somehow, almost magically, a spark made its way into the storm cloud I had been... Thu, 16 Dec 2010 20:47:44 EST Frickin' Frick Faces Her Fears Note: This is a follow-up to Monday's "Frickin' Frick Meets the Deep Breath" <BR> <BR> You know how some people bring reading material into the restroom? (where the hell is she going with this...) I've never been one of those people. Suffice it to say that I have no familiarity with what I do in there requiring time or effort. But when I see someone march into the restroom with National Geographic tucked under the arm, it gives me the impression that they are about to settle in and do some w... Wed, 15 Dec 2010 20:26:14 EST Uncharted Waters 3 Weeks. <BR> <BR> I realize that's hardly a benchmark worthy of a parade, but it's about 2 weeks longer than I tend to stick to anything. And I've really been working. Not one day have I given up, contemplated throwing in the towel, or backed down. Three weeks is just one week shy of a month, and one month can easily turn into two...or three... <BR> <BR> So, I'm giving myself a solid pat on the back and taking a moment to congratulate myself on really giving myself a chance. <BR> <BR> I... Tue, 14 Dec 2010 18:44:07 EST Frickin' Frick Meets the Deep Breath Gah. What the heck happened this weekend? Everything started so well. An uplifting weigh-in, and a busy chore-filled Saturday that made me feel like I'd really accomplished something. <BR> <BR> And then my friend kissed me. If you refer back to my entry on Friday, you will notice that this WASNT SUPPOSED TO HAPPEN. I knew he was attracted to me, but I talked to him about it and [thought I] made it clear that it was important to me that our friendship not take any exploratory turns. Maybe tha... Mon, 13 Dec 2010 15:54:19 EST Today Wont Be The Day So, I don't have a lot of time to write or much to say, but today is not going to be the first day that I decide I will forego my blog and not login to Spark. Today wont be the first day that I decide that those commitments are too inconvenient or less important than what is going on right this moment. If I never let today be the day I compromise, I'll never fail. So that's all I've got. That and the hope that tomorrow holds for a whole new opportunity to try again. <BR> Sun, 12 Dec 2010 20:39:26 EST Results! First, today's required musical setting of the scene: <BR> <link> </link> <BR> (Dancing along is *highly* recommended, especially if you're reading this first thing in the morning.) <BR> <BR> Today's weigh in was a mighty victory! Now, I feel like I can say without a doubt that all my hard work is paying off. Yippee! <BR> <BR> I have lots to do today, and I've agreed to go with a friend to a party tonight. I'm really trying to force myself out of the h... Sat, 11 Dec 2010 07:31:37 EST Hangin' Tough Before continuing, please set the tone appropriately by enjoying this music video: <BR> <BR> <link> </link> <BR> <BR> <em>104</em> I'm declaring victory in my "week" (5-day) reduced-calorie diet. I can't control results, so you'll notice my victories tend to focus on my efforts, and no less so here. It was actually MUCH easier than I expected. I kept thinking, "Hmmm, maybe these mixed greens have more calories than I thought. Or have I been sneaking f... Fri, 10 Dec 2010 19:45:06 EST Snot and Boogers Since yesterday's post was so darn serious, I thought I'd lighten things up today with a very important matter I have wondered about for years: snot and boogers. <BR> <BR> Is snot just liquid boogers? <BR> <BR> I have always assumed so, but then that leads me to the following quandary: whenever the weather turns cold, as soon as I step outside, my nose starts to run uncontrollably. I can blow my nose before leaving, and it doesn't matter how healthy I am. Cold weather = instant snot faucet... Thu, 9 Dec 2010 08:56:01 EST Why So Shy? You might want to brace yourself for some offensively honest talk. <BR> <BR> I have always admired fat women. Ever since I was really young, I've always been jealous of the enormous women I'd see at the mall, at parties, at the beach. It's not their bodies I envied, but their confidence. <BR> <BR> I have never been obese, and at the worst my weight has only crept toward overweight. (I should also mention that I've never been underweight) In general, my weight has been both remarkably stab... Wed, 8 Dec 2010 13:46:01 EST More than a Body Not everything is diet and exercise and pounds and inches. <BR> <BR> Today started with a pretty big dilemma. My spiritual teacher asked me to substitute teach for her next month. This is somewhat akin to giving a Sunday sermon in the Christian context. In our tradition, the relationship with one's teacher is super important and consequently, I feel as though I cannot tell her "no." And yet, I must....for the saddest reasons of all. <BR> <BR> My spiritual practice has been in the gutters f... Tue, 7 Dec 2010 16:51:10 EST Change in Direction I was going to give this blog a very different title and list my shortfalls and frustrations...but I've decided that would be counter-productive. Fohgettaboutit. I'm moving on and choosing to be positive. <BR> <BR> So far today, I've resisted the temptation to shovel loads of food in my face. I was pretty hungry at various points. I even hung on during a long boring work event which was catered. I ate my boring lunch that I'd brought with me after carefully planning my calories for the day. ... Mon, 6 Dec 2010 18:44:46 EST Refocusing I did something radical this morning. <BR> <BR> I threw away 2 more-than-half-full pints of my favorite ice cream flavors. Last night, I treated myself to wine and ice cream with a friend...and, even though it was certainly an indulgence that will set me back, it wasn't an all-out, forget-losing-weight scarf-fest. I poured out the remaining wine, too, but the ice cream was the real breakthrough. I stopped as my hand hovered over the trash, asking myself if I should have one last taste. But I... Sun, 5 Dec 2010 09:11:28 EST Feeling Fine I started making changes just 11 days ago. I joined Spark, started paying more attention to what I eat, and made exercise a priority. The difference in each day is remarkable! I can't begin to explain how much better I feel! <BR> <BR> I'm more awake during the day and getting out of bed is not the 2-hour process it previously was. Every day after a workout, I just feel so darn good. My confidence and general disposition have made leaps and bounds. After the first few days, I didn't have to r... Sat, 4 Dec 2010 10:28:52 EST 50-50 So today wasn't a raging success. I missed my swim this morning and I ate a bunch of nonsense during the day - like I forgot that I don't do that anymore. <BR> <BR> But, there's good news, too. Part of the reason I missed my swim was because I was editing my resume. I spoke with a colleague in another department today about it, and he's going to pass my resume along to his boss along with a passionate recommendation. He started listing my fantastic qualities while I was sitting in his office... Fri, 3 Dec 2010 19:13:08 EST It's Time We Have a Chat Dear Self, <BR> <BR> I want to take this opportunity to explain to you how things are going to go from now on. First, let me say that those months of living in a nest on the couch, watching tv shows season-by-season in a numbed state are over. We're not doing that anymore. And we're not hiding from the world in our apartment anymore. <BR> <BR> Now, that doesn't mean we won't be spending a whole lot of time on our own. We've got a lot of work to do - weights to lift, laps to swim, miles to r... Thu, 2 Dec 2010 16:51:48 EST Fork in the Road I've written before about my excitement to train for my first triathlon. Let me be more specific: I'm registered for a Sprint Tri in early June. I'm a little nervous about getting into kickass shape from my current Play Dough condition in just 6 months, but at the very least, I'm confident that 6 months is enough time to train to finish in one piece. <BR> <BR> Today I have to decide if I would also like to register for an Olympic distance tri. For those who unfamiliar, a Sprint would take 90... Wed, 1 Dec 2010 05:55:04 EST Recovery and Recognition On a fluke, I happened to join Spark on a Wednesday. This turns out mighty convenient because Tuesdays are my scheduled rest day. I'm pleased with my workouts the past 6 days. Now, I get to rest, feeling like I've absolutely earned a day off. <BR> <BR> In the past 6 days, I swam twice, biked twice, ran twice, and did some strength training twice. I'd say that's kicking things off right. <BR> <BR> So, this morning, I'll have a nice long stretch before work while I give myself that daily pep... Tue, 30 Nov 2010 06:32:51 EST Game Face Update I'm embarassed to admit how redonculous my morning was after I posted my blog. <BR> <BR> I left my house, walked to the wrong subway station, got on the wrong train, and didn't notice until some 30 minutes later when I was almost to the office. In a bathing suit and unshowered. (Yes, yes, there were clothes over the bathing suit, but I was not in a state that I wanted to be bumping into any colleagues.) I was already running late and worried about what would happen if I strolled into the off... Mon, 29 Nov 2010 12:20:23 EST Get Your Game Face On Ok, so I thought if I started exercising, gave up the worst diet offenders, and started making all my own healthful meals, pounds would rapidly make their exit. <BR> <BR> It seemed logical to me, that if not exercising and eating junk was what got me here, than stopping would get me back to where I want to be just as fast. <BR> <BR> Alas. The scale this morning says I need to reevaluate. <BR> <BR> I'm sufficiently out of shape that I can't yet reasonably increase the amount of exercise I'm... Mon, 29 Nov 2010 06:33:14 EST Party of One My ex-boyfriend was a recent transplant to the city where I live, so we had a whole list of things that we were going to do together that included all the sights and activities I'd never gotten around to. I still have the list, but now whenever I recall All the Things I Want to See and Do, it really feels like All the Things We Were Going to Do Together. <BR> <BR> Unfortunately, one rotten breakup is just the tip of the iceberg of disappointing relationships in my life. I wanted to go campi... Sun, 28 Nov 2010 18:52:50 EST Two Steps Forward and One Step Back I remember when I was younger, feeling considerably guilty that I didn't have an eating disorder. I considered this something of a personal failure. Not only was I walking around this earth with an unacceptable body, but I had such a lack of personal strength, that I didn't even have the chutzpah to make myself sick about it. <BR> <BR> Oy. <BR> <BR> I'm over punishing myself for being healthy. I bring it up because I believe on more than one occasion in the past, I have not only dismissed ... Sat, 27 Nov 2010 16:42:23 EST Wading In I don't want to exaggerate the (mental) progress I've made the last couple days, but <BR> <BR> VICTORY BEECHES!!! I'M QUEEN OF THE UNIVERSE!!! <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> lol. <BR> <BR> Wednesday I got on my bike and pushed myself. Yesterday I ran smartly (chronic injuries = I'll spend weeks regretting the influence of ego/optimism). And then last night I did a little strength training. <BR> <BR> Then, I woke up this morning, feeling great but feeling like the pool sounded like a lousy idea.... Fri, 26 Nov 2010 12:46:13 EST Metrics I started today getting on the scale and pulling out the calipers and measuring tape. Thrilling. <BR> <BR> Anyhow, here are the goods: <BR> <BR> *weight - 144.0 <BR> <BR> *BF% - 26/30.9 (two different measurement methods, always two different results...but having both of them helps judge precision if not accuracy. After all, what matters isn't so much what the number is but what the change in the number is.) <BR> <BR> *waist (at belly button) - 34.5" <BR> <BR> These are the three metrics... Thu, 25 Nov 2010 11:20:35 EST Starting at the End - Setting Goals 2 years ago I was in great shape. I could run a 6 minute mile, my body fat was about a third what it is, now, and I was often lifting heavier than the man next to me at the gym. <BR> <BR> I think that makes it harder to start over. Because I still think of myself as an athlete. And then I try to do something, and it's like I have the flu. The barbell doesn't budge, my body is stuck in a sea of molasses, refusing to accelerate, and my lungs are confusing a warm up with exercise. I've spent t... Wed, 24 Nov 2010 16:11:26 EST