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Archive for the ‘Weight Loss’ Category

Wow. So WordPress is telling me I have lots and lots of updates to perform if I’m going to bring this place back up to code. And hey, did you all know it’s 2012?

Tonight I got the itch to sit down and write (I actually had to think about which spelling to use there-wright, rite, right-blah-blah) because I’ve had a very good day and want to share what’s been going on these last couple of months.

First, the bad news. I gained a whopping 13 pounds between Halloween and New Year’s. I’m not freaking out about it because I’m still kicking ass at the gym. I did, however, learn that peanut butter Snickers bars are the product of Satan and that next Halloween the house will be dark and I’ll be holed up in the basement watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Hulu while Nathan takes some gussied-up version of our daughter out around the neighborhood. It all went downhill starting on Halloween and I won’t be making that mistake again this year.

But October was a very good month for me in that I once again started the Couch to 5K program and finished without stopping or needing to repeat a week. BOO YA! I seriously never thought I’d be able to do it. Once in awhile I’d look at what was coming up and would be like, “What? Eight minutes straight of running? Are you shitting me?” I’m happy to say I’m now running 5k three times a week and had the best run so far today. My body is getting stronger, my thighs especially and I’m starting to feel like that Bond girl who squeezed men to death with her vicious scissor hold in Goldeneye. Xenia Onatopp. That’s me.

I spent some time with a personal trainer while I was out and about ignoring the blog and now incorporate two days of strength training into my weekly routine. Getting the strength training in is a challenge because I really do love the cardio and if I thought my body could take it I’d be on that treadmill five days a week.

Wait. What? Who just said that? Because that couldn’t have been me.

Yes, I like to run, which is a good thing because I also like to eat and I’ve made a decision to just be happy where I am right now. I’m 13 pounds heavier than I was three months ago, but I am still 97 pounds lighter than I was three years ago. I’d like to take those thirteen pounds back off and a few more of their friends, but I’ve decided that I have to find happiness with the body I have now. I’m probably as fit as someone my size can be and I think that’s amazing. What I’ve accomplished since slipping on that damned patch of ice in my driveway four years ago is pretty freaking awesome if you ask me.

That’s really all I have right now. I just popped in to brag and let my scant few readers know I’m still alive and kicking. Besides it’s getting late and I’ve got to get to the gym in the morning.

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Last night I dreamed of Subway sandwiches.

They were delivered on a platter and people swarmed to the sandwiches, taking their favorites away on paper plates. I approached the platter and reached for the last turkey on wheat at the same time Harrison Ford reached for the last turkey on wheat.

It turns out Harrison Ford has turned into a crotchety bastard in his old age and he gave me a “Don’t fuck with my sandwich” look so I backed off because you do not fuck with Harrison Ford’s sandwich.

I took whatever meager leavings remained on the platter, which I promptly dropped on the floor. I had nothing to eat. Harrison Ford, on the other hand, happily walked away with the last turkey on wheat and didn’t look back.

And that’s how the first and only day of the 17-day diet cleanse ended. With Han Solo stealing my favorite sandwich.

I am back to my regular plan today. Yesterday started off strong with a bottle of kefir and an egg white omelet. I brought a salad, grapes and a yogurt with me to work and didn’t even feel the need to dig into the grapes until 11:00.

Then round about noon the fatigue set in. This was highly unusual for me. I never get that tired that early in the day, but I’d had an intense spinning workout in the morning, one in which I really pushed myself, and I don’t think I gave my body what it needed to refuel.  At noon I had my salad, at 3:00 I had the yogurt and at some point I found myself uncapping the bottle of Diet Wild Cherry Pepsi I’d left in the fridge.  By the end of the day I was an exhausted, cranky mess who had been bitterly hoarding vanilla Tootsie rolls from the work candy dishes all day with the hope I might be able to eventually eat them.

Had I not already decided to eat my minimum points, I would have ended the day with a 12 point deficit. I used up those points by eating almonds, peanut butter and cherries (not all at once) but that still did not remedy the feeling that I’d been completely hollowed out by hunger. Nathan and I had no emotional reserves to withstand Autumn’s monkey business and became very short with her. Of course it didn’t help that she’s exactly the kind of child who will test out the fire door at Costco even after she’s been told exactly what will happen if she opens it, but by the end of the night we were spent and went to bed early.

This morning was no better and we had a hard time mustering the energy to get out of bed. Nathan has soldiered on to Day 2 but I have happily embraced my carbs again in the form of an English muffin for breakfast and leftover pizza for lunch. I can’t tell you how much difference there is between yesterday and today. Instead of saying, “Hey…you!” when someone greets me, I’m able to remember names and concentrate on work. My stomach is not grumbling and I have, in fact, treated myself to a couple of vanilla Tootsies today.

This is the me I like. The me who loves to eat and be active and who has enough energy reserved to consider doing more in bed than just falling asleep holding my Kindle.  Last night any thoughts of intimacy were pushed out of my mind by the overwhelming desire for a damn sandwich.  I still don’t know how Harrison Ford fits into all of this, but if he shows up in any more dreams I’ll have a thing or two to say to him about how being a celebrity entails demonstrating just a little bit of generosity.

I guess I’m back to square one as far as figuring out how to break out of this plateau. I’m going to try staying away from diet sodas as much as possible and have a plan in place on how mix things up with my weekly and activity points.  The bottom line is I’m not (read: never EVER again) going to sacrifice feeling great in order to force the scale to move.

I just have to have faith that it will eventually move as long as I continue taking good care of myself.

 

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Last week Nathan and made the decision to try out the 17-Day Diet.  You may call me a hypocrite since I poo-pooed said diet a few months ago, but gosh darn it SOMETHING has to break me out of this plateau and I’m at the point where some behavior modification is needed to get things moving again.

At first I was going to follow the diet to the letter and suffer right along with my husband, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized the diet most likely would not allow me to do two things:

  1. Maintain my current level of physical activity.
  2. Remain a pleasant person.

Those things are very important to me. I love working out and really pushing myself. I love my spin class, I love the elliptical and I’m even starting to love the burn in my thighs the day after my attempts to jog on the treadmill. While the 17-Day Diet does endorse exercise, the caloric intake most likely would not be able to sustain me through my regular workouts.  I’m sorry, but I’m not about to sacrifice my hard-earned cardiovascular fitness level for the sake of a fad diet.

Then there’s Nathan, who not only consumed two Big Macs during a lunch date at McDonald’s this past week but likes the 17-Day Diet plan because it looks to be one in which he can quickly lose weight without having to exercise much.

Slacker.

As for the mood thing, I spent the worst of my depression being a difficult, insufferable person at work and at home and can pretty much guarantee I won’t be Miss Mary Sunshine if you start limiting both my food and my exercise. That’s not to say I don’t need to make changes and some of the principles of the diet, while gimmicky, might help me break the bad habits I still haven’t been able to shake these past two years, such as:

  1. Drinking too many diet sodas
  2. Not drinking enough water
  3. Eating too many carbs
  4. Dining out too much
  5. Eating too many processed foods

The soda thing will be hard, especially when I think of the diet Wild Cherry Pepsi I left in the fridge at work on Friday. I heart my diet sodas so much, occasionally drinking up to two 20 oz bottles in a day, but I know they’re bad for me so I’m going to give them up for the duration and switch to the 17-Day Diet staple of green tea and water.

Yay.

As for the rest, you can’t argue with eating clean, unprocessed foods such as lean meats and green, leafy vegetables, all of which we’ll be cooking and consuming at home.  The whole fruit abstinence after 2pm is a bunch of bollocks if you ask me and I can already see that as being one of the more flexible tenants of this diet.

The long and the short of it is that I’ve decided to follow this diet along with Nathan while still eating my minimum daily points, logging everything into my tracker and maintaining my current level of activity. I think I may be able to make this work if I view this as a cleanse rather than a diet.  I’ll probably miss the carbs as much as I miss my soda, but something has to change.  It’s only three months to the start of the holiday season and I need a little momentum to keep me going. The past two years have seen me lose weight between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, and while my goal during that time has always been to maintain my weight, I’d hate to break that losing streak.

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There’s a pregnant woman in my SPIN class. She’s obviously in her last trimester and if I had to guess I would say she’s about 7-8 months along.

I can’t tell you how much I admire women who are not only able stay active throughout their pregnancies but are more than willing to do so. Six years ago I took the news I was pregnant as license to give Weight Watchers the ol’ heave ho.  I sustained my life and Autumn’s on a diet of pizza and ice cream and was very happy to have a valid reason to stop going to meetings. After all, Weight Watchers would not have let me continue anyway once it became apparent I was expecting.  My separation from them (once again) was blissfully guilt-free this time.

I sometimes wonder what would have happened if I’d had enough foresight to take better care of myself throughout my pregnancy. When I got pregnant I weighed right around 270. The day I gave birth I clocked in around 325. During my first prenatal appointment my OB cautioned me to not gain much weight but said little as the numbers on the scale crept higher and higher.

At the time I didn’t want a preachy OB getting on my case about being fat and I did ultimately have a stress-free pregnancy in spite of my size, but looking back I now realize I maintained an unhealthy, apathetic attitude about my weight right up to the end. Of course I hated seeing the scale go back up over 300 again, but I kept telling myself there was nothing I could do about it. I was having a baybeee, so of course I had to gain some weight.

I was really nervous about getting pregnant again after having Autumn. The thought of having another child and putting on even more weight finally gave me that healthy dose of fear that had been absent during all those months when it would have made a difference. I can’t get pregnant right now, I thought. I just can’t.

Then Autumn, Nathan and I fell into a pleasant rhythm and I started asking questions like, “Do you think maybe we could do this again?” Nathan said maybe but that I’d have to lose some weight first. I didn’t want to hear it and did nothing about it, but he was right and we finally decided to put the issue to bed once and for all just before Autumn turned a year old. Nathan had a vasectomy.

For the most part I’ve been happy to have tied that knot in the works. Another pregnancy has occasionally popped up in my dreams, sometimes manifesting as a warm feeling of rightness, as though all the cogs in the machinery of my life have gotten themselves back into working order. Other times the pregnancy is a setback, an interruption, a dark cloud of wrongness robbing me of any hard-won equilibrium.

The truth is, since Nathan’s vasectomy, I hadn’t felt the slightest bit emotionally or physically capable of handling another pregnancy until now.

Of course the kicker is I turn 40 in three months. And then there’s still the whole vasectomy thing.

I’m not saying I want another child.  That ship has sailed, but when I look at that pregnant woman in my SPIN class I know there’d be nothing short of bed rest or severe gestational issues keeping me from staying active and eating well this time around.

It is unfortunate that it took five years after a vasectomy and three months before my 40th birthday to get here, but I guess I’d rather be here and know I could handle it than stay where I was with a fear that creating another life would physically and emotionally ruin me.

That is progress, even it means we’ll always be a family of three.

 

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Last night I was starving.

Not really starving, mind you, but ravenous.  A chew-the-upholstery-off-the-furniture crazy kind of hungry.

I got home and could not wait for dinner to be ready. I opened up the pantry doors and ate a Weight Watchers Lemon Mousse Pie 2-point bar. Then I had another.

Then I got into the Wonka chocolates. I don’t even know how many of those things I had or why I brought them into my house to begin with.

Then there were the pretzels with the wedge of Lauging Cow cheese.

And finally there was dinner-rotisserie chicken, waffle fries and garlic bread (that was in the oven a little too long).

After dinner we went to the ice cream parlor where I had a small cone of real soft-serve ice cream dipped in chocolate. By that time I was finally full, but I ate the damn ice cream anyway.

The funny thing is I ate all that last night and I still saw my weight go down a little this week. It was less than a pound, but I’ll take it.

I’m not going to beat myself up for the binge or the god-awful 24-point chicken sandwich I had at Burger King Thursday night because I learned from these mistakes. For one, I learned I need to drink more water because I’m pretty sure the persistent hunger I felt all day was due to very little water intake while I was at work.

The second thing I learned is that I will never again order the bacon ranch Tendercrisp chicken sandwich from Burger King.

I also learned that I might be due for a “tune up” with my therapist because I’ve been very successful at sabotoging myself lately.

Did I need to buy two bags and four bars of  Wonka chocolate this week?

I did not.

Who suggested we go to Burger King with their chicken sandwich monstrosities instead of McDonalds, home of the 8-point southwest chicken salad?

I did, and I did it because I’d had a chicken salad for lunch and didn’t want another for dinner. Wah, wah, wah.

However…

I’m also the person who had dinner with her best friend at a great Mexican restaurant last week and ordered the taco plate instead of the chimichanga I really wanted.

I’m the person who had dinner at Red Lobster, ate one Cheddar Bay biscuit when I really wanted two and created my own feast of grilled shrimp skewers and steamed crab legs.

And I’m also the person who still got in five workouts during the week, workouts which apparently saved my ass at the scale today.

I wont lie. Last night really freaked me out. As I was sitting in the chair unwrapping chocolates, I was thinking, “WTF is wrong with me?” Am I reverting back to old habits? Am I going to gain it all back?  But then today I had to remind myself that I made a lot of good choices this week, too. Sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of the good stuff when the bad  stuff starts making its way back into your life.

I confessed to my Weight Watchers buddy about the binge last night and she said, “Don’t you know you’re supposed to do that after weigh-in?”

Yeah, but I kind of like starting the week over with a clean slate.

That’s the best thing about Saturday.

 

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I scream, you scream

Yesterday I had an interview for a promotion at work. I wasn’t at all nervous until about two hours before I was to sit down with the interviewers, all of whom I knew and work with every day.

I haven’t interviewed for a job in four years and my nerves were so bad at one point that I needed a sedative in the form of a piece of ice cream cake. One of the ladies at work celebrated a birthday on Thursday and brought in no less than three homemade ice cream cakes with vanilla ice cream and crushed Oreos drizled with chocolate and cramel syrup.

At this point I do know better than to use food to medicate myself, but I did it, went to the interview and lived through it.

However…

Later in the afternoon I had a second piece of homemade ice cream cake. I’d had a taste and wanted a second piece for no other reason than it was damn GOOD.

Those two piece of ice cream cake, as small as they were, may not have been so bad had I not also had a Rolo McFlurry at McDonald’s last night. We pulled up and I had totally intended on ordering a 4-point Vanilla cone.  Then I saw the sign for the Rolo McFlurry and I was gone. Nathan ordered a regular size one for himself and a snack size one for me, but when they pushed the drink holder out to us I could not immediately determine whose McFlurry was whose. The snack size was much bigger than I thought it would be, but that didn’t stop me from eating it.

I wasn’t expecting much at today’s weigh-in, but for some reason I walked away losing .6 pounds. Last week I gained one.

The good habits are the ones that led to that .6 pounds loss. The good habits are the reason I saw a loss at all, but the bad habits still seem to work their way into my week and it kind of bugs me. I know I’m not perfect, but yesterday as I was sitting at my desk about ready to vomit from the anxiety, the only way I could think to deal with those feelings was through eating.

Old habits certainly take a long, looong time to die.

But do they really die or do they lay dormant, awaiting the day we have a job interview or a death in the family or a child having problems in school?

I really have no idea, but if I ever figure that out, I’ll be sure to let you know.

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I try not to miss my Weight Watcher meetings. Granted, there are times when I’m in a pissy mood and walk out of the center as soon as I step off the scale because the scale did not show me what I expected it to show me. Of course it also happens the other way when I don’t expect much at the scale and am rewarded with the very generous gift of a loss I probably didn’t deserve.

I knew I was going to have to miss my meeting this past weekend due to attending Gleek Retreat. I also missed my meeting three weeks ago when I had to work. I only work two mandatory Saturdays per year, both of which are put on my calendar way ahead of time. In fact, I can look at the university catalog and know exactly which Saturdays I will be working through December of 2013, so it’s not like these days sneak up on me and I have no time to make other arrangements for my weigh-in. I just choose not to go.

Since I knew Gleek Retreat would also be preventing me from weighing in this weekend, I sort of relaxed with my eating last week. I actually relaxed a lot, with Friday night seeing me finish off the remainder of an order of moo shoo pork prior to a trip to the mall where I ordered a Fresco burrito from the food court Taco Bell.

There are two things wrong here, the first being why the hell did I eat the moo shoo pork before going out with my family? I knew we’d be hitting the food court, so why couldn’t my hungry ass wait 30 minutes until we drove our collective hungry asses to the mall? The second thing wrong is that I still ate a burrito after I’d essentially scarfed down dinner by myself at home. Granted, I did possess enough sense to order a Fresco burrito, but I wasn’t even hungry. So why did I feel like I had to eat?

Oh, and there IS a number three here. I capped off the evening with a coconut mocha smoothie, no whipped cream, thank you. I had a Groupon.

I haven’t eaten like that in a long time. I haven’t eaten that volume of food in one evening, nor have I stood in front of the fridge with the door open while shoveling food into my mouth in ages. That’s the kind of thing I did frequently when I weighed 350 pounds. I was like a Hobbit, eating second breakfasts and putting food before my own personal safety.

In my past attempts at losing weight, I’d slip like this and then decide to skip weigh-in because I didn’t want to face the consequences of my choices. This time was a little different in that I knew well in advance I’d have to skip my meeting and decided a week’s furlough was reason enough to unhinge my jaw and chow my way through the week.

Maybe I’m being a little hard on myself. I did still exercise and I really only took two days off plan, but I should not have let things go as far as they did considering I had a weekend ahead in which food choices would be even more challenging with the catered meals at Gleek Retreat.

And then there was a trip to a bar that involved a pomegranate martini and an appetizer of bacon-wrapped shrimp.

I wound up eating every single daily and weekly point on Saturday. Yesterday was a little easier since the conference concluded before noon, but I somehow still found myself with only six points to spend on dinner last night..

Try sticking to six points when your husband grills pork chops and garlic bread and makes a very delicious new potato salad.

Hint: I did not stick to six points.

So today I started off in the red. Thankfully I was wise enough to go to the gym and now have the teensiest bank of activity points at my disposal. My goal today is to not use them. We’ll see how that turns out.

Oh wait. I forgot about the roasted peanuts I ate before bed last night, so I guess I’m still in the red.

Damn.

I have to admit I’m not at all looking forward to stepping on the scale next Saturday. I have no idea how bad it will be, but I’m going to have to answer for the moo shoo pork, the martini and the bacon-wrapped shrimp.

Not to mention the chocolate cake.

And the Red Vine licorice.

And the many little chunks of Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip bars I broke off and ate throughout the week (thanks, Megan).

The thing that sucks the most is that whatever I gain will take twice as long to come off, so I guess I learned a very valuable lesson.

Get to a meeting no matter what.

Also, don’t order any more moo shoo pork.

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