Monday, December 10, 2018

MIA: here I am

Ok, so I missed posting on Friday...oops!  It wasn’t because I have given up or anything like that.  Life just was crazy last week!  
 Last week was a blur.  I had off Monday...Tuesday and Wednesday were my last days on my old team at work.    On Wednesday I had multiple meetings concerning my new team.  Thursday and Friday were the first days of training.  So just crazy!

The weekend rolled around and we were happy for the time to relax!

  I was really happy because my official weigh in day showed me down about a pound.  Not exactly on target for the 10 pounds I want to lose in December...but down!   I’ll take it!!!

However.....the weekend was sure to bring lots of food....birthday cake/treats.  Really?   I wasn’t giving up eating a little treat for my own birthday!!!  

We went away...grand plans to hike a lot.  Well that didn’t happen...a late start and some planned stops and. Visits along the way and we decided to just hike on Sunday.   We made our way south and checked into our hotel.  The idiot owner had left the windows open...the room was as cold inside as it was outside...20°!   We cranked the heat but got totally chilled as we waited for the heat to warm everything up.  No problem...we would just take really hot showers to warm up!   Except that there was no hot water!   (Barely lukewarm) That was the straw that broke the camels back...we got a refund and made a switch to a different hotel.  

Sunday we both woke up feeling icky....and where we wanted to hike was closed due to an impending storm. Well then.....we gave up and went home and curled up on the couch.

Today, my actual birthday and we are hanging out...both off  work.  We are both still ‘snotty’ but plan on heading out to hit some stores and run some errands...before coming home to curl up on the couch and watch movies.  Not an exciting way to celebrate your 46th birthday...but just what we want....maybe the earlier plans falling through were a blessing in disguise!!!

I did get my birthday gift from Jason while we were in Virginia...a new good chain to replace the one I lost on his birthday weekend!

You can kinda see it in this picture sparkling on my neck!!

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Taking the first steps toward health: getting started

Changing is so difficult!  In my mind I can know 100% for certain that I want to change and live a healthier life!  I know what I want!  I know that the end result is better than anything that I could ever imagine.  Yet why is it so difficult to make the changes?  Why is it so difficult to take the first steps!!

It is the Christmas season.   For the first time in many years I’m totally excited about the holiday!  I was happy the last few years but this year, the first year in my own place again...with Jason....is proving to be extra magical!  We have taken the time to revisit some of the childhood classic cartoons (yup...we started watching on December 1!).   What fun memories ....and seriously...you can’t beat the classics!   We checked out the classic cartoon version of the Grinch  and that first night we also watched ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’.   (Amazon Affiliate links)  My dad always loved the Winter Warlock and would always sing/hum the song sung as he transformed from grouchy Mr. Warlock to nice Winter.  I never understood his fascination with the song...i guess i though that it was just really catchy.  But this year I really listened to the lyrics ...and holy moly, if they don’t speak to someone that is hesitant about taking the first steps to changing their life...than I don’t know what is!!!  (And now that I think about it, I think dad may have referenced this in a sermon once!). As the song (and speech parts)  says,  it really is OUR choice to change and it starts with one step...one foot in front of the other...and soon you are walking cross the floor...one foot in front of the other and soon you’ll be walking out the door!     Is that not so apprapos for a weight loss journey also?   Just take the first steps...

Here are the lyrics (with the speech parts included ...really...take the time to read them...but if you don’t want to read them...listen...I have a video included at the bottom!

It’s time to take ‘one step’ and put one foot in front of the other and change my life into one much more healthy and active!

Lyrics


[Speech]
Winter: I really am a mean and despicable creature at heart, you know. It's so difficult to... [sighs] really change.
Kris: Difficult? [chuckles] Why, why look here. Changing from bad to good's as easy as...taking your first step. 
[Chorus]
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon you'll be walking 'cross the floor.
You put one foot in front of the other
And soon you'll be walking out the door. 
You never will get where you're going
If ya never get up on your feet.
Come on, there's a good tail wind blowin'
A fast walking man is hard to beat. 
[Chorus]
If you want to change your direction,
If your time of life is at hand,
Well, don't be the rule, be the exception
A good way to start is to stand. 
[Chorus]
Winter: If I want to change the reflection
I see in the mirror each morn...
Kris: Oh, you do.
Winter: You mean that it's just my election?
Kris: Just that.
Winter: To vote for a chance to be reborn? Woo-hoo! 
[slowly]
You put one foot in front of the other, and
Soon you are walking
'Cross the floor
You put one foot in front of the other, and
[a tempo]
Soon you are walking out the door 
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon you are walking 'cross the floor
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon...
You'll be walking...
Out the door!

And now for the video ...enjoy!  


Monday, December 03, 2018

Addiction addled mind: rationalizing my food choices

Happy Monday!  Luckily for me I am off work today, so my weekend is not ending!  In a way I almost wish it were!  Why?  My eating has been out of control and it is typically easier for me to regain control with the routine of work in place. Regardless,  I found myself awake at 3AM.  Not exactly sick, but unable to sleep.  Other than that we had a fabulous weekend.  Relaxing, eye opening in terms of my food addiction and even a bit of exercise amidst the rain and fog.

First let’s recap the weekend.  I was off Friday.  (Jason has had to work both Friday and today...but I still have some use it or lose it time...I’m not losing!!). On Friday I spent my day running and doing all kinds of errands AND all of those chores that you keep saying ‘I really need to do it....next weekend for sure...’.   (ie a new shower curtain liner, bra shopping, etc)  I was on the go from the time I woke up until about 20-30 minutes before Jason got home.  Felt good to knock so much off my to do list!!!  On Saturday it was rainy...so we ran a few errands.  I knocked another big to do off my list.  When I reached my lowest weight I got rid of all of my big clothes....including winter coats.  As I regained I simply wore layers of sweatshirts to make do in cold weather. Not the optimal option but I didn’t want to spend the money if I was going to lose...it was kinda the same mindset with the bras and the bra shopping I didn’t want to buy until I was a lower size. (The bras had become a necessity though you know it’s bad when one comes out of the washer in two pieces!). So when we walked through the mall and I saw that most places had their winter coats on sale for 50% off I started to look. (It helped that this was my three paycheck month versus the normal two...so no rent/bill money was deducted!!).  I fear this winter...we are due for a bad one..and with how wet it has already been, I think we are going to get walloped!  So I purchased a coat that fits me!  It fits me perfectly ...no room for weight gain!!  And the best part?  It was 50% off...and I signed up for the store credit card (which I will never use again) and got another 50% off on top of that!  I got my winter coat for $40!  I hate winter...but after so many years without a coat, I want a cold day!!  On Sunday it was wet and foggy.  We visited Jason’s parents and hit up the canal for a bike ride. (Notice the multiple layers on me...it wasn’t supposed to be cold...and Besides, I didn’t want to get my new jacket muddy!!!)

Today will be spent with my mom!!!  I told her she can take me out for lunch to celebrate my upcoming birthday!  Hahaha. We will be shopping and who knows what else today!!

This weekend I picked up a book I had read a while back.  It is called ‘Do life’ by Ben Davis. (Amazon Affiliate link).  I haven’t gotten too far into it during this reread....but it has already really struck a chord.  He talked about his addiction with food (and with gambling). He discusses how our minds (the addicted and messed up mind) can convince us to do the exact opposite of what we had planned or what we want to do.   As I read,I could see it in my behavior of the weekend.  I made a vow/challenge for December....I am going to try to drop 10 pounds!  So why in the world did I on Friday...November 30’th make my all time favorite cookie...a cookie that I refer to as my personal crack?  I convinced myself that I would make them...eat them on Friday and by December be done!  (Seriously...I KNOW that this cookie recipe makes about 6 dozen!). But, make them I did!   Surprisingly enough on Friday I kept it under control...mostly.  Saturday not so much. I had vowed  a ‘two a night’ limit!  Somehow my addicted mind decided that two a night had nothing to do with eating 8 at lunch! (Excuse me...for lunch...I only ate cookies for lunch!). So then when night time came along I still had my nighttime two to eat...but then my addicted mind proclaimed the day already a failure...so I figured that I may as well eat 4 or 8 more!!!  And I did. What’s worse? I started to repeat the cycle on Sunday!   The whole time I was doing this I wasliterally nodding my head and saying ‘this is exactly how he said an addict thinks’. But it didn’t stop me!!!   I am proud to say that on Sunday night I packaged what was left into packages of four  (I don’t make them huge  maybe 1.5 inch in diameter...oh heck...there is the addict brain speaking and rationalizing again) and  popped them in the freezer.  Yes they are still in the house but they are not as readily accessible!  Thawing then out will make me take the time to really decide if I want them,versus sneaking one cookie when I go into the kitchen (and that one cookie turning into 4 or 10).   

As I laid here this morning unable to sleep this morning, I started to think about the nights I can’t sleep.  Without fail they are followed by either a night or a period of time on which my eating was not exactly healthy.  (Hmm And water consumption has been non existent this weekend also....). Coincidence?   I think not!!!!

So I’m kinda back on track.  It will still be a rough month food wise...lunch out with mom today...birthday celebrations....Christmas...eiiyiiyii!   But I am hot on the trail!  I can do it!!!

Friday, November 30, 2018

December plans

November...what can I say?  It’s been a month...how is that for vague and bit really informative!!!   OK...this is me and I am open and honest if nothing else.  There were extremely happy moments and utterly sad ones.   There was victories and failures in terms of my weight loss journey.   Through it all, there came a plan for the future.

Emotions
 Emotionally,  was it good or was it bad???

It was a difficult month.   We made it through the first anniversary of dad’s death   I still miss him like everything and can’t believe that he is gone!!!  Oh if only I could talk to him at least one more time!  

The month wasn’t all tears and sadness.   Jason and I celebrated our third year anniversary.    Yup..we have been together 3 years now! That is amazing!!!  I’m still amazed at how amazing a GOOD relationship really is!!!


 Victories for the month
I started to workout in the morning.   Ok, don’t get too excited, I am not working out hard core intense!!!   But it’s 20-25 minutes of activity...four mornings a week...at 5:30 AM!!!  Other than one or two days where I was fighting off a sickness, I’ve not skipped any days!!

The other big victory was definitely my eating on Thanksgiving Day   I had the eating challenge ...and it went perfectly and I felt in control!!!!

Failure for the month
Yeah, my weight...totally failure.  I am about 3 pounds higher at the end of the month than what I was at the beginning of the month!   Yes...I’m ashamed!!!

Future 
So what’s up for the future?

I am going to have some changes at work. I am being moved to a different team.  That in itself is a change...and lots of learning.  But....on top of the new team and new knowledge,  my schedule is changing.  It’s only a half hour...but it is going to eat up that exercise time that I just carved into my daily routine.  I started a habit and now I don’t know what to do.   I will be waking up at 5:30 each day to get ready to go to work....and yeah, I could get up at 5AM...but...well.....    sprightly now my thinking is to try to do something for a half hour when I get home each night.  

The other thing?  I am challenging myself.  I’m saying 10 pounds in December!!!   It’s a lofty goal...especially since it’s a holiday season!!!  And birthday season in my family.  (December 10th is the best one ever...my b-day!!).   I have set the 10 pound goal, but I’m just hoping to have the downward trend happening!!!!!  Anything down on the scales will be a victory!!!!

So there you have it...the good, the sad, the shameful, the plans!!!!

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Mind over Matter

Years ago when I was running consistently, I bought a road of bracelet.  (It is an armband/ankle band that has your identifying information on it should someone find you  unable to communicate while you are out biking or running). Mine had my name and contact info on it...and I also put the phrase  ‘mind over Matter’ on it.  For me it meant that my body would be telling me that I was dying and my body would be telling me that I couldn’t do it....but if I put my mind to the task then I could accomplish unimaginable goals!   It worked for me...and I latched onto that phrase for quite a while.  But eventually my focus shifted and I forgot the phrase...until recently.  Recently I had my eyes opened to how much power the mind really does have when it comes to attaining seemingly hard to reach and even unattainable goals.

 I have the best brother in the whole wide world.   Growing up, sure we fought (like cats and dogs my mom may say) but I have many memories of amazing times with him. You see, I had a brother that played with me.  He played restaurant with me (yeah...I had a kitchen set and since my grandmother owned a restaurant, we used to pretend we owned a restaurant!)...he was willing to play something more ‘girlie’ with me....but then on the flip side, I played army men with him....I had my own collection of matchbox cars that I pulled out to play with when I wanted to join him in his play.   Growing up, he really was my best friend.   We have grown up and while life keeps us busy and running in opposite directions...I know my brother still loves me just as much as I love him....and I know he would raise an army for me if I needed it.  I just wanted to share about my amazing brother before I wrote and share the story about him!

About two or three months ago (on Labor Day to be exact) my brother was out riding his bike.  My brother rides road bikes...a LOT so this is not uncommon.  He was riding with a group of people. They actually got off the road and onto a rail trail for something a bit different.  My brother was second in line.  The person that was leading the group had an accident (from what I was told he hit something and lost his grip on the handlebars and went down).  Going the speed they were going (probably about 20 -25 mph) and being only inches off of the lead persons wheel, my brother couldn’t avoid it...he ended up crashing. It was bad...bad enough that he had to take a ride in an ambulance to the local hospital....and from there he took another ambulance ride to a hospital in Baltimore (70 miles away) for a specialist.  Why the extra ride?  He broke his pelvis and it would require surgery (and a more delicate surgery due to where the break was located).  He was in the hospital for a few days, had the surgery and added some hardware to his body (screws and I think a plate) and then came home.  I am a google person...so I researched his injury, surgery and recovery.  6 months if someone is lucky...but usually closer to a year.  Wow...that was a tough pill to swallow for me, and I worried about my brother.   But, here is where mind over matter comes into play.

As the week in the hospital unfolded we were told that he wouldn’t be able to put any weight on that side of his body for a few weeks....but that soon changed to crutches and minimal weight.  I don’t know if the doctor sensed his drive, but even that soon changed to ‘use the walking assistance as needed’. He was sent home from the hospital with crutches (he declined the walker as that seemed like an old person’s option...and he said a cane seemed too permanent).  

Jason and I stopped by for a visit sometime within the first week of him getting home. We knocked on the door and my jaw dropped ...my brother answered the door...walking on his own two feet...unassisted!  Yeah, he had a limp but where were the crutches?  They were in a corner in the other room.  The doctor said as needed...and he didn’t need them...not at that moment for short walks and jaunts.   Somewhere in those first two weeks I was talking to my mom and she mentioned that one of my brothers first forays into the world after getting home was to drive to the bike shop.  You see, he had pulled the trigger on a new bike a day or two before his accident.  He had to go to the bike shop to check out his new baby.  They has put the build on hold because they knew the extent of his injury....and my brother had to go to get them working again...and to see his buddies!

I saw my brother  again two weeks to the day after the accident and a week and a half after the surgery.  He was walking most of the time unassisted.  And he said this to me.  ‘They tell me that the average recovery time is a year.  A year recovery time is unacceptable’.  Unacceptable?  I wanted to look at him and say ‘sorry big brother but this is NOT something you have control over’. But I didn’t. He started to talk about getting back on a bike...his indoor bike.  And when he went to his first follow up appointment the next day he was cleared for 15 minute rides on the indoor bike...low resistance.  Let me say it again...two weeks and 1 day after the accident (or to make it sound  even more amazing...1 week and 5 days after surgery) my brother was on his indoor bike trainer riding!

My brother picked up his new bike...and he rode it around the block!  And then came the day.....right around the two month mark that I was talking to my mom and brother on the phone (hey I call mom and talk to her during my commute home from work each Tuesday and Thursday...she puts the phone on speaker phone and I talk to whomeever is visiting her also...yes I’m hands free also!!). I heard the news.  My brother had been riding outside...each day that week...about 25 miles .  That’s 25 miles each ride...not an accumulation of miles.  Not his new bike...he was riding his old bike just because he knows how it handles and how it feels...feels more safe to be on a bike that he knows...and as he said he didn’t even have bottle cages on the new bike yet.   But I noticed over thanksgiving while I was feeding his cat...and I was checking out his new bike...cuz that’s what a good sister does (and let me tell you..his new bike is SHARP looking...) but I noticed that he is gearing it up...it now had bottle cages!  Apparently two weeks after starting to ride, the doctor ok’d him to ride anyway...so he isn’t doing anything harmful..just maybe a bit earlier than the doctor may have wanted (of course some of that could be because he doesn’t see the doctor all that often...and I’m sure he probably spoke of it to his physical therapists). 

A year was unacceptable....his mind made that proclamation.  And he had ignored all the ‘year recovery’ babble.  He decided to forge his own recovery. And it is amazing to see. I can well imagine that there are people (even people younger than my brother...he will be 50 in March) who had the same or similar surgery and at two months in are still walking using crutches 100% of the time. I’m not downing them...their minds haven’t declared the prescribed recovery time as unacceptable!  (My brother wanted to be back on his bike badly...and the business he owns is  very physical as he builds the most incredible furniture and he needs to be back to 100% for that also).

Mind over matter!  Put your mind to something and you can achieve the most amazing results.....against all odds!!!

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Ephiphany: Weekend recap and some revelations

It was a long weekend and I enjoyed it thoroughly!   I had some thoughts and revelations about my journey.  I had a victory.   I also suffered a bit of a set back.  So good and bad all rolld into one.  So lets take it one day at a time..

Thursday
Thanksgiving was actually a victorious day.  I had set a challenge for myself and I nailed it!  It was the perfect challenge for me.  It gave me the freedom to enjoy the holiday and the holiday eating, but yet still keep me reigned in!  I will definitely be revisiting the same challenge at Christmas! 

Friday
This is where it started to fall apart.  I had off work (that part was good) and spent the day with my mom (that part was good also).   We went out to lunch and I actually chose a place that I could get a good salad.  I was craving a salad!   I knew my calories would be higher because...well a salad with all the fixin's isn't usually low calorie. I was ok with the higher calories because I would rather eat something that is packed with nutrition versus eating a higher calorie meal that has limited nutritious value.  BUT then they said "would you like the endless soup for 1 dollar more".  Of course I got it...and of course I chose the Broccoli Cheese soup..  I ate two bowls of that soup.   I was STUFFED.  Mom and I hit up a few stores...but pretty much just hung out and avoided the crowds.  Dinner rolled around and it was our standard pizza and wings night.  I wasn't really hungry...but I still managed to eat a few wings and two slices of pizza.   See....bad.....why was I eating when I wasn't hungry?

Saturday
It was raining and miserable...and borderline freezing so in areas of our travel it was freezing over.  We relaxed and headed to Hagerstown to run a few errands and see mom.  I tried to stay close to mom this weekend.  This weekend was  the year anniversary of dad's death..Sunday the 25th to be exact.  (And I still cry at the drop of a hat when I think about life without my dad). 
Dad with his high waters and me with my short short dress!  Christmas 1977
I nibbled on some food at mom's...but nothing major.  I fell off the wagon when dinner rolled around.  I was hungry....and I ate way too much food.  I was stuffed but I STILL managed to shovel in some dessert!  Why oh why???   And then I felt miserable the rest of the night....and I woke up with a stomach ache Sunday morning.  It is SOOOO not worth it!

Sunday
 We woke up and headed to the Christmas tree farm. We took the hayride out to the fields.

We picked out the perfect tree. We (Jason) curly the tree down and we carted it home.
Of course we decorated our tree. And that took most of the day.   We relaxed in the evening and enjoyed the tree!!
So what is the revelations?

We talk about doing things.  We talk about our dreams and plans. A few months ago we sat back and said "enough is enough, next year we ARE going to Maine (Acadia)..and tentatively it is scheduled for August."   When we had our vacation in October  one of the lessons we learned was that we have to be in good shape if we plan on having an active vacation in Maine.   Motivator for sure! 

Well....we took it a step further this weekend.  We have talked about hiking the Inca Trail and seeing Machu Pichu for years.   We have set a date....well...a year.  2022    Why that year?  Well 2019 is Maine.   2020 and 2021 will be less expensive vacations while we put money aside for the biggie.  AND 2022 is the year that I turn 50.  So I will be hiking the Inca Trail the year I turn 50 (technically I will probably still be 49 when we do it......since I don't turn 50 until the end of the year).    Jason will at that time decide what big vacation we do on his 50'th year which will be in 2025. 

If we are hiking the Inca trail....I have to be in shape!   Just like all the hiking and biking in Maine will be more enjoyable if I am in shape.

Did we stop there?  No....we talked about the fact that we have always talked about doing section hikes of the Appalachian Trail.  We have talked about it for 3 years now (yup, we hit out three year anniversary on November 20th).  But we haven't done it.  We haven't even started to purchase gear.  I have no gear...and Jason is partially geared...he purged all of the stuff that needed replaced when we moved....so he needs to replace some of his stuff.  SOOOO we sat down and have started a list of gear we need.   And we will be starting to get our stuff slowly but surely.  This is going to happen. 

I'm tired of being fat.  I'm tired of being out of shape.  I'm tired of it all!  It's time to change!

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Turkey day challenge

On Monday I wrote a post and threw down a challenge for myself (and for anyone else who wanted to join me!   The challenge was simple....it had four diffeeent facets and didn’t focus at all on calories...but allowed me to enjoy the holiday but still have restrictions in place.

1. Exercise
2. No bites licks or tastes while cooking (all food must be eaten off a plate..at the table)
3.  One plate/serving
4.  Picture of plate of food

So how did I do???

1.  Exercise 
I knew that I wanted to go for a run  since time wasn’t an issue....little did I know that it would be one of the coldest days of the year thus far!  It was in the mid 20’s!!!!  Brrrrrr.   But I went!!!

So how rosy my cheeck/face was...that’s a combo from exertion and coldness!!!

I was curious how I would feel!  I haven’t run in ages...but I’ve been faithfully getting on the stair thingy.  I managed to run the whole time (slowly).  And I managed it without too many aches...just the backs of my thighs!

One down...three to go!

2.  No bites, licks or tastes.   I though that this one would be easy....but it was really difficult!   ‘Hey Maryfran, taste the mashed potatoes to see if they need more salt’. ‘Does the stuffing have enough...’. Grrrrr.  So many questions...all relating to something needing a taste to check it before finishing it and calling the dish complete!    

I didn’t take a bite...I deferred and had mom taste it all.  

Victory

3. One serving/plate

This one also proved to be a bit more difficult.   I had a plate of food...(my roll laid beside the plate, I didn’t want it touching my food on the plate...lol). I ate it and then had to sit while everyone else ate...and the baked corn and stuffing were both beside me..two favorites!!!     Finally I DID cave and grabbed my small, previously unused appetizer plate and went and grabbed some raw veggies off the veggie platter to nibble on while every one else was stuffing their faces.  

So was that a victory or a failure???  I didn’t have another saw one serving  of anything.  I had a FIRST  serving of raw veggies.    I actually felt pretty good after our 1pm thanksgiving dinner.  Not stuffed or anything..but full and satisfied!

I did about two hours later have a piece of pumpkin pie when we served dessert.   And for dinner, I had some leftover corn and stuffing...I wasn’t really hungry!

4. Pictures

You can see my dinner roll. I had a small scoop of mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, baked corn and  a stuffing.   Delicious!! 

I failed to get a picture of my veggies...but I had some crisp sweet bell peppers, carrots and broccoli.

I did get a picture of the pie. (With the crust that fell off)


My dinner...I failed to get the pictures...it was leftovers  (corn and stuffing...my favorites...carby but what I wanted! So I ate what I wanted and skipped what I didn’t!!)
So a partial victory...but at least I photographed the important meal!!!

Overall I feel as if I did really good! I put my food into myfitnesspal this morning and came up with 1778...a bit high,but I wasn’t aiming for perfection...I was aiming for under control indulgence! I feel like I achieved that!   As for the calories,  I thought I did much better than that (the pumpkin pie is what I’m blaming!!! Hahaha. Well yeah I guess it was the pumpkin pie...300 some calories!)   I’m ok with it.  Furthermore, it would have been much much worse had I not had these ‘rules’ in place!!! 

So now the big thing...my weight....it is looking a bit higher than yesterday morning...but right on target with what it was last Saturday. (official weigh in is  Saturday so I’ll know for sure then.) so as for right now it will probably be a maintain for the week.  My water consumption was in the toilet yesterday though ...so that’s skewing today’s results a bit I imagine.  

Sooooo...my thoughts on the challenge!  It certainly worked for me!!!  Had I not had a set plan that I was 100% determined to meet, I would have done much worse!  (MUCH worse!). My plan was NOT to stay within calories.  My plan was set in place to enjoy the holiday food but yet keep it under control. I feel as if it worked absolutely perfectly!  I will definitely be revisiting this challenge again  at Christmas for sure also in future years!  I will personally adjust it though.   The picture of my food did NOTHING for me...other than to make me stress because I was at the table with others and it was awkward....and then I stressed when I went back with my previously unused appetizer plate for the raw veggies....I was halfway through the veggies when I realized I hadn’t taken a picture...so more stressful than anything else.  But the rest of the rules...definite keepers!!!!








Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Amazing bodies: perseverance and a little sadist all thrown together

A few years ago, when I was running consistently I heard about a little known race.  It was of the endurance variety...so while it was interesting, it wasn’t on my radar of races to train for.  However, it was something that I wanted to hear more about.  I tucked the name of the race in the back of my head and vowed to look into it first chance I got.  What is the name of the race?  The Barkley Marathon.  

It wasn’t until 2016 that I had the opportunity to really learn about the race.   Jason and I were looking for a movie to watch and saw this movie called “The Barkley Marathon: The race that eats its young”.  (Amazon affiliate link) My brain immediately regurgitated the information that ‘hey, this is the race I heard about a year or two ago!’  So we decided to watch it.    I was glued to the screen while we watched...totally intrigued....and the fascination has not gone away!  

In brief....this race is brutal!  The title of the documentary ‘the race that eats its young’ is well named.  It is the mastermind of a man named Laz who apparently  has a wicked sense of humor. (Come on now...entry is based on an essay and a $1.60 entry fee....if you are accepted you get a condolence letter, there is a bugler that plays taps...quite frequently, the race starts with a cigarette lighting, just to name a few quirks.).  The race is held in the mountains of Tennessee and was inspired by a prison escape.  Yes a prison escape. A prison is/was nestled in these rugged mountains in in the late 70’s an inmate escaped.   They caught him 55 hours later....he had made it all of 8 miles in those 55 hours....Laz began to mock the story and said ‘I could make it at least 100 miles’.  And the race was born.  To say that this race is brutal is an understatement.  This race has been held yearly since 1986 and to date there have only been 15 people to ever finish it...and only 18 times someone has completed it! (This discrepancy in the numbers...one person finished it two years and another person finished it three times).  When someone does complete it, Laz makes the course more difficult.  What does the race entail?  5 loops of running/climbing/crawling and sliding your way through the rugged woods...with a 60 total time cut off. (No stopping the clock to sleep...if you sleep it eats into your 60 hours)  Each loop is between 20-30 miles....and the whole race requires just under 70,000 feet of climbing.  Oh did I mention that this course is unguided...you have a map and a compass....and it’s mostly NOT on trails.  Brutal!

I watched that first documentary and I was hooked.  I knew the race was held in March or April, so I started looking for reports of the race .  We had a winner!  And a guy local to me!   I devoured the reports..and the winning runner’s blog.   And I actually got emotional when I heard about the guy who made a navigational mistake that cost him time.....in the last 10-30 minutes of the race....and he came in exactly SIX SECONDS after the time cut off. 

I watched again in March/April of 2018 and saw a few reports....no one was able to complete it.. not one person!  If I’m correct no one even made it to attempt a fourth loop!  Not even the guy that was 6 seconds late the previous year.  

And then the other week I noticed a new documentary that came out. Of course we watched it!   It is called “where Dreams Go To Die”.  It follows one runner as he makes multiple attempts to complete this brutal race. Once again, I was enthralled!

The intrigue in this race is very real and strong for me.   I can’t get enough of it....  My mind circles at the training, perseverance, dedication and fortitude to complete something like that. Ok,not even to complete it...to even attempt it.  Most people are lucky to get one loop done.  It blows my mind!    I have no desire to complete it (although Jason said never say never!) but I just can’t atop contemplating and reading about it!  

I think the thing that gets me the most is the mindset.  What these people display is awe inspiring....and SHOULD  translate into my quest for healthy living....because what they are doing is exactly what I SHOULD be doing.. maybe just  in a slightly smaller and less extreme way.   These people have the uttermost determination. They prepare  for months and push through pain and hardship!  They sacrifice...time and comfort.  They lost sleep to finish workouts...they didn’t indulge in certain foods that were not beneficial to their goals.    They figure out how to make this work within a full schedule of work, life and family!  The finisher from 2017 did so with twin babies and a toddler at home...while working a full time job....he commuted to work every day on his own two feet ..more recently on a bicycle as he was training for an Ironman since his Barkley finish.  (as a side note...his shoe leather express commute is probably faster than my commute in a car in D.C. traffic!!).  The second documentary...he has a wife and young son...he makes it work also. 

So what excuses do I have?  My measley half hour workout in the morning is NOTHING compared to the hours these people spend training.  My aches and pain are nothing when I compare myself to the conditions that these people willingly put themselves through.   Being intrigued and immersed in something like the Barkley Marathons puts my excuses into perspective.  They are null and void!!!!




  


Sunday, November 18, 2018

Temptation and a bit of a challenge

So it’s the week of thanksgiving!  Happy early Thanksgiving!   And with this holiday comes the knowledge that there will be lots of food to eat....lots of food to make...lots of food to see...lots of food to consume.   It is sooooo tempting to throw in the towel and just give up!!!  Especially this week!!!

Yes, I did just say that I am tempted to throw in the towel and give up on this weight loss thing until after the holidays.  (And I mean after Christmas...). I’m not losing weight as it is...so my natural inclination is to say ‘screw it’ and just eat what I want. However.  I don’t want to go into the new year with even more weight...I would ideally like to start the new year weighing less than I do now...but I would be happy to go in with a maintain!

So for that reason I am throwing down the challenge.  A nice Holiday (let’s just focus on Thanksgiving right now.) challenge.  It’s simple really.   (And I blatantly grabbed the idea from a blog I read.).   Four different facets of this challenge.

1.  Exercise the day of the holiday!   
2.  No bites licks or tastes while cooking and cleaning up...food must be on my plate at the table if I eat it!
3.  One serving ...no multiple plates!
4.  Take a picture of my food eaten!!!!!

Simple...but doesn’t it sound effective!   So no...I’m not throwing in the towel...I’m issuing a challenge!!!



Friday, November 16, 2018

Friday: brrrrr winter is here

What a week!!!  It wasn’t a bad one, thank heavens... But it sure was crazy!!!   It sure ran the gamut in terms of what happened.  So without further ado, I give you my recap of the week.

Workouts
I started off Monday still reeling from my weekend of being sick.  I decided to put my newfound early morning workout routine on hold until I was fully recovered.  I did not call off of work.   I trudged into work.  By the afternoon I was really dragging!  But I made it.   Because it had been so rough to make it through Monday afternoon I decided to not workout on Tuesday morning also.  Part of me wonders if I didn’t make that decision more out of ‘I don’t wanna wake up early’ versus ‘I really don’t feel right yet.”  But regardless, I am ok with my decision.  On Wednesday though...no excuses!  I got up and did my 25 minute workout.  It’s not super intense...but it’s at least something!  I received an email on Wednesday from my good friend Julie (she lives about 8 hours away from me...we primarily communicate through email...occasional texts and visits every once in a while...rare visits sadly enough).  She just happened to mention the fact that ‘luckily my fit bit alarm went off and that woke me up’.  I had a lightbulb moment.  A Fitbit alarm???  I imagine that at some point may have known that I could set an alarm on my Fitbit .(Amazon Affiliate link)..but then again...maybe not!  Either way, an alarm on my Fitbit  would eliminate my guilt at the loud alarm going off and waking both Jason and I up when it only needed to be me sacrificing sleep!!  Let me tell you...it worked like a charm!!  Yeah, he stirred when I slipped out of bed...but he didn’t total wake with the rousing alarm!  So yes...on Thursday I worked out too!    

This week I added in weights and some arm work!  I also got smart and threw my headphones on and listened to music to help pass the time on the stair machine thingy!  This weekend I may look into my supply of DVD’s and add in a video or two!  Anything to keep it fresh and different!

Work
I did some more training this week.  On Tuesday and Wednesday I worked with some reps in Indiana to train and prepare them for the next step in doing this job.  They are definitely on the fast track of learning everything.  Necessary since they are taking over my position.  Sometime  in the next month or so I’ll be the one learning a new position (my team’s work is being moved to our Indiana site and I’ll be on a new team.).  

The discontinuation calls continue.   These are calls regarding the end of the assistance program for one of the medications that I support.  Some of them are difficult...which we expected....after all we are taking away the free medication that people have been receiving...and it is a life saving medication! But let me tell you though...I’m amazed.  Simply amazed.  A few times a day I get the call and someone is obviously upset about this change...and worried.  But then they still stop to say ‘thank you for the medication that you HAVE given me for free’. I didn’t expect that at all...and even though it’s only a few it does restore faith in the human race.

Eating
My eating was pretty good this week.   I never went crazy.  I never binged.  I stayed steady. My calories were pretty well in line. 


I thought I tracked over the weekend..but I apparently didn't...I have since gone back and done so and my calories were in the same range.

I have my goal on myfitnesspal set to have me lose 1.5 pounds a week...and as you can see I come in below that goal....so I SHOULD be losing!!!!

Weight
I’m holding steady within the same 2-3 pounds.   Grrrrrr!  I don’t want to go lower in my calories...but it seems I’m going to have to.

Weather
Welcome winter!   I didn’t get any good pictures of our first snow...I left home on Thursday morning right as it was starting where I live and drove straight into the storm.   I made it to work with out much fuss...and I was inside all day and missed the bulk of the snow.   I commutes home in the aftermath and continual rain -and ice.  Jason was sent home from his job...they closed down...lucky boy!!!   He sent me this picture taken from the couch at about 10:30 when it was just getting rolling.

Our area got about 4 or 5 inches...but then the temps rose a bit and the rain helped melt the snow.   We are still in the clean up and residual ice from all the snow and rain stage.  But we weathered our first winter storm.

Overall I would say that the week was an ok one. From sick to health.  From 60° to winter storm.   Exercise....no exercise.   Just a total crazy week of opposites!  I didn’t have any great success in my weight loss...but I will say continuing on with the exercise instead of not restarting is a huge victory!!!!



Tuesday, November 13, 2018

When it’s just not working: quit or adjust

I started to work at my current job about a year and a half ago.   I quickly fell into a couple habits.   Honestly, they were pretty decent habits!  And they were working for me!  But just this morning I realized that one of the habits is no longer working for me!  That means I need to either give it up or alter it!!!  Continuing on with something that is not working is a futile attempt at success!

So let’s talk about some of these habits that I fell into:

The first habit was that I began walking on my 15 minute breaks and on my 30 minute lunch break. When winter hit it was more difficult but I continued on days that were not ‘too cold’ and when it was too cold?  I walked the steps on each break.  Not exactly a complete workout, but it was at least some activity in an environment that has me sitting for hours on end while I do my job.   I feel better when I do this and however small, it’s doing my body some good.    I have admittedly gotten lazy on this one and I need to alter my behavior to get back into this and to stop being lazy.

The next habit I got into was eating a small snack in the morning on the way to work.  This was mainly when I was leaving the house at 6AM and had a two hour commute. When I moved closer to work I just accidentally stopped eating breakfast.  It worked for me and I found that I felt better not struggling to force myself to eat when I was  not really feeling it.  I later found that what I was doing was intermittent fasting.  And it worked for me in terms of my lifestyle.   I am not a sadist.  Ok those days that I can think of nothing other than food in the morning?  I will break from my routine and actually grab a bite to eat.   So this habit stays.

The last habit  is the lunches that contain ‘portable’ foods that I could eat while walking.   Typically this was a piece of fruit and a piece of cheese...easily nibbled on  on while walking.  This is the habit that I’m struggling with.   In the last few months I  found it more and more difficult to be ‘satisfied’ physically and emotionally with this light lunch.  And I often cave and go to the cafeteria.  The other morning while I was packing my lunchbox I had a lightbulb moment.   Two of them really.   The first was that it makes sense that that type of lunch no longer works for me.  I started intermit fastening and I’m breaking my 16 hour fast with that meal and it’s virtually nothing.   Well then.....
The second thing is the memory of lunches I ate when I was losing weight years ago. I still ate a meal that was heavy in fruit and veggies (mostly fruits and veggies) but I always had some kind of  carbohydrate ...or something crunchy...without it I felt dissatisfied.   A lot of the time I ate a Wasa cracker   (Amazon Affiliate Link).  That’s a cracker that is high fiber, low calorie and relatively nutritious...it added the crunch needed. Sooooo...realizing and remembering these two things helped me come to the conclusion that I will be altering my lunches to include a bit more food...I don’t want to be ravenous...or unsatisfied.   Sustainability requires satisfaction!!!

So that is my main change...I will be adjusting how and what I pack for my lunches at work!!!   This weight loss thing is an ever adapting every changing life!  What works today may not work next week...we just have to roll with the punches!



Sunday, November 11, 2018

Derailment: knocked off the exercise path

I swear!  Every time I get myself in line something happens to detail me!!!  I did so good last week!  I tracked my food intake.  I woke up early and exercised each morning!  I was hotonthe trail of health!!!  Ok, so I may not have posted a loss on the scales...but I had a maintain and I felt like I was FINALLY back in the right path....and then bammm.....derailed!

By the end of my typical work week I am always exhausted.  So on Friday afternoon when the exhaustion hit I wasn’t too concerned.  I did wonder a bit about the fact that I was crying on my drive home...crying because I was so darn tired!  But I got home and settled in and my tears were gone so I forgot about them.   

On Saturday I took it easy...I just felt ‘off’ but I felt fine.  

But on Sunday it hit! I slept most of the morning....I slept a couple hours in  afternoon.  I felt like I had been drug through the mud.   I’m pretty sure I was running a fever.  I just tried to give my body what it was demanding.

In talking it over, I decided to turn off the early ‘exercise alarm’ for Monday morning.. It just didn’t seem wise to push myself!   So my good habit that I was in the process of building is being put on hold.   There is NOT relief, surprisingly enough.   I’m actually more upset to delay my quest for fitness.

I did stumble around and get my dumbbells ready to add that into my morning workout routine!  

Meanwhile...my baby girl had to go into the bike shop, she wasn’t sick....she was getting an upgrade though.  My one tire was not holding air.  Instead of buying a tube and fixing it, Jason has given me one of my Christmas gifts early...my girl is going tubeless for her tires.  I should get her tonight!!!  I don’t like my pretty girl not being in the bike bedroom!

So a temporary delay in my quest for fitness...but I vow to only let this be temporary....I will not be totally derailed!  And an upgrade of equipment.  I want fitness and I’m still pushing onward, but I have to listen to my body and when your sick...your sick!

Amazing bodies: perseverance and a little sadist all thrown together

A few years ago, when I was running consistently I heard about a little known race.  It was of the endurance variety...so while it was interesting, it wasn’t on my radar of races to train for.  However, it was something that I wanted to hear more about.  I tucked the name of the race in the back of my head and vowed to look into it first chance I got.  What is the name of the race?  The Barkley Marathon.  

It wasn’t until 2016 that I had the opportunity to really learn about the race.   Jason and I were looking for a movie to watch and saw this movie called “The Barkley Marathon: The race that eats its young”.  (Amazon affiliate link) My brain immediately regurgitated the information that ‘hey, this is the race I heard about a year or two ago!’  So we decided to watch it.    I was glued to the screen while we watched...totally intrigued....and the fascination has not gone away!  

In brief....this race is brutal!  The title of the documentary ‘the race that eats its young’ is well named.  It is the mastermind of a man named Laz who apparently  has a wicked sense of humor. (Come on now...entry is based on an essay and a $1.60 entry fee....if you are accepted you get a condolence letter, there is a bugler that plays taps...quite frequently, the race starts with a cigarette lighting, just to name a few quirks.).  The race is held in the mountains of Tennessee and was inspired by a prison escape.  Yes a prison escape. A prison is/was nestled in these rugged mountains in in the late 70’s an inmate escaped.   They caught him 55 hours later....he had made it all of 8 miles in those 55 hours....Laz began to mock the story and said ‘I could make it at least 100 miles’.  And the race was born.  To say that this race is brutal is an understatement.  This race has been held yearly since 1986 and to date there have only been 15 people to ever finish it...and only 18 times someone has completed it! (This discrepancy in the numbers...one person finished it two years and another person finished it three times).  When someone does complete it, Laz makes the course more difficult.  What does the race entail?  5 loops of running/climbing/crawling and sliding your way through the rugged woods...with a 60 total time cut off. (No stopping the clock to sleep...if you sleep it eats into your 60 hours)  Each loop is between 20-30 miles....and the whole race requires just under 70,000 feet of climbing.  Oh did I mention that this course is unguided...you have a map and a compass....and it’s mostly NOT on trails.  Brutal!

I watched that first documentary and I was hooked.  I knew the race was held in March or April, so I started looking for reports of the race .  We had a winner!  And a guy local to me!   I devoured the reports..and the winning runner’s blog.   And I actually got emotional when I heard about the guy who made a navigational mistake that cost him time.....in the last 10-30 minutes of the race....and he came in exactly SIX SECONDS after the time cut off. 

I watched again in March/April of 2018 and saw a few reports....no one was able to complete it.. not one person!  If I’m correct no one even made it to attempt a fourth loop!  Not even the guy that was 6 seconds late the previous year.  

And then the other week I noticed a new documentary that came out. Of course we watched it!   It is called “where Dreams Go To Die”.  It follows one runner as he makes multiple attempts to complete this brutal race. Once again, I was enthralled!

The intrigue in this race is very real and strong for me.   I can’t get enough of it....  My mind circles at the training, perseverance, dedication and fortitude to complete something like that. Ok,not even to complete it...to even attempt it.  Most people are lucky to get one loop done.  It blows my mind!    I have no desire to complete it (although Jason said never say never!) but I just can’t atop contemplating and reading about it!  

I think the thing that gets me the most is the mindset.  What these people display is awe inspiring....and SHOULD  translate into my quest for healthy living....because what they are doing is exactly what I SHOULD be doing.. maybe just  in a slightly smaller and less extreme way.   These people have the uttermost determination. They prepare  for months and push through pain and hardship!  They sacrifice...time and comfort.  They lost sleep to finish workouts...they didn’t indulge in certain foods that were not beneficial to their goals.    They figure out how to make this work within a full schedule of work, life and family!  The finisher from 2017 did so with twin babies and a toddler at home...while working a full time job....he commuted to work every day on his own two feet ..more recently on a bicycle as he was training for an Ironman since his Barkley finish.  (as a side note...his shoe leather express commute is probably faster than my commute in a car in D.C. traffic!!).  The second documentary...he has a wife and young son...he makes it work also. 

So what excuses do I have?  My measley half hour workout in the morning is NOTHING compared to the hours these people spend training.  My aches and pain are nothing when I compare myself to the conditions that these people willingly put themselves through.   Being intrigued and immersed in something like the Barkley Marathons puts my excuses into perspective.  They are null and void!!!!




  


Friday, November 09, 2018

Tough decisions: making, altering and deleting

It is Friday again!  That means I have made it though another week.   It was an interesting week for me!   I actually made some changes and implemented some healthy living plans!  I actually worked on my weight loss efforts!   So let’s get right into my Friday recap!

Work
Like normal, my work week was exhausting!  The days are just long...and I’m using my brain pretty much every second of the day.  This week was maybe even a bit more tiring than normal as I continued training the reps from a different site AND because the discontinuation calls have started to hit us.  Discontinuation calls?   I work for a medication assistance program.  We run various programs to offer assistance for people that can’t afford their medication to gain access.   One of the medications (two actually....very similar uses) are still available on the market but the decision was made to end the assistance program for these medications at the end of the year.   This is a life sustaining medication...so to say that people (patients, doctors, nurses, social workers, anyone really) are upset is an understatement.   So that makes work.....interesting.  It’s also heartbreaking for those of us on the front line as we have to confirm and talk to these people.

Exercise
A while back I made the vow that I would have to sacrifice something to make time to exercise.  I knew I wasn’t sacrificing my time with Jason on any consistent basis...which meant my sleep...I would just have to wake up early and exercise before my shower. Shame on me, I never did it!    And then last weekend I got a friendly nudge to do it.  I decided to do it!  Nothing was going to stop me!  Every workday morning I was getting up early to get in a workout!  So I am proud to say that on Monday morning I woke up early and hopped on the bike trainer!   On Tuesday morning I woke up early and split my time on the bike trainer and the stair stepper.  I realized that the stair stepper gave me a better workout (the bike trainer is a bit louder and I didn’t want to mess up Jason’s sleep OR the people downstairs so I kept it on an easy and more quiet resistance).  Sooo on Wednesday I did most of my time on the stair stepper and then finished up with a few minutes of sit ups on the exercise ball (Amazon Affiliate link) ..a good cool down before my shower!  Thursday was a repeat of the previous day’s workout!  But I was  really dragging on Thursday morning.  Honestly I was dragging by Wednesday night...bad!     I am always really dragging by the end of the week.  Sooo...I am altering my plan.  4 days a week...allowing me a Friday off!  (Or Friday is a make up day if I miss a day earlier in the week). My altered plan really does make sense, to me at least!! It allows my body/muscles a bit of a rest before we break into our weekend plans of hiking or biking. 

You can see my stair stepper thingy on the far left at the bottom and my old Trek bike on the trainer in the middle top of the picture ...and of course the exercise ball!  

So this week I’ve learned a few things....wear shoes on the stair stepper....remember to put my hair in a pony tail....it is possible to do it blind in my little ‘exercise room/area, without glasses....lots of fun lessons.   But I have also come up with a few ideas to pump it up.  I will be going into the storage closet this weekend to grab my weights to add upper body to my stair stepper machine.  I will also be perusing my dvd collection to add in a dvd workout.  So I am full of plans as I alter and adjust this new lifestyle behavior to fit my needs.

Walking on my lunch break???   Well...hey I’ve been waking up early to workout...that’s something...right?  Ok, so walking on my breaks hasn’t gone ‘well’.  In fairness Monday and Tuesday were rainy.  Wednesday was just sheer laziness on my part!!!  On Thursday We had a fire drill at work so I walked down the steps...then walked the steps back to my floor...but otherwise..I’ve been a slug!

Eating
The crazy fact of the week?  While we were on vacation I tracked every bite of food!  There were some high days but I tracked them.   I went back to work and the tracking went away...and I barely tracked anything!   Crazy isn’t it???    This week I picked it back up!  My calories were kept in line...betweeen 1200 and 1400 calories a day!   

I did indulge in a small piece of my homemade fudge here and there...but it was totally accounted for!!!

The hardest part?  I had been doing intermittent fasting ..not eating until 1pm...my lunch break.  It has worked well for me.   Until this week!   About an hour or so after my work out I’ve found myself hungry...and then I think about food all morning long!   I caved one morning and ate breakfast!  (I’m not a sadist...if it isn’t working I’m not doing it!). So I’ve been doing a bit of research...and I’m up in the air about continuing that morning fast.

Weight
Typical week...my weight popped up on Monday....frustratingly so.  It dropped again, a little....and today my weight is a pound up from where I was last Friday!  Grrrrr

So that’s my week.   Some plans for a healthier lifestyle were made.   Some were altered.  Some were deleted....life is going on and I’m slowly going to figure this out!!!!  And it’s going to be something that I can do forever!!!  Sustainable!!!



Wednesday, November 07, 2018

The Whoosh Effect

I have been lamenting about my weight lately.  I am either NOT losing or I am in this vicious cycle on the scales that is just frustrating.  When it happens it makes me throw up my hands in the air and say "why"?   Why in the world indeed.

Let me recap what the 'vicious cycle' that seems to be perpetuating over and over on the scales.  I will be super active on the weekend and will be feeling confident about my next weigh in.  But on Monday, my weight either stays the same or pops up on the scales. All week long I keep myself in check but the scales are NOT friendly.   And then the weekend arrives and boom....my weight drops.  It has made no sense....Friday nights are usually cheat nights (pizza and wings delivered to our door so our Friday tired-selves can do nothing other than answer the door) but my weight drops.  Isn't it crazy?  

I've tried to combat the cycle.  I've pondered.  I've thought.  I've lamented.  

And then....bright and early one morning a few days ago I was reading blogs and I came across a blog post on 3purplethings that had a link to an article and it ALL MADE SENSE!   

What is this magical answer?  It's called the Whoosh Effect

Seriously, I recommend reading the complete article.  However, I know that there are time limitations, so I will recap.    Basically the article starts with the scientific stuff about what happens when we burn fat.....the area that the fat used to be is replaced with water.....and thus you are not showing a loss on the scales when you actually burn the fat because there is water that has filled that void  (I actually knew that after a good workout there is a bit of a water retention issue.)  The weight will eventually drop...when the water is expelled from our bodies.     Furthermore the article clearly says that when you are seeing the weight drop, it is most likely from something that you did a few days/week early because of that water retention thing.  (Ok, this makes sense too...because how many times have I seen a weight loss when I didn't deserve it...but see no weight loss when I really do deserve it?)    Yeah, the article was totally making sense  (Have you gone to read it yet?)   Up until this point, the article was amazing.  But then it actually got better!   The article quoted a study that was completed during WWII...a semi-starvaation diet known as The Minnesota Starvation experiment.   They basically set up a program in which these people were doing hard labor but not eating a whole lot...and should be losing drastic amounts of weight.  After a while, they noticed that the participants would have fluctuating weight all week long..even though they were working hard and eating little. BUT...each week when they gave them a 'cheat meal' (AKA known as a higher caloric meal) that night they noticed these  men went to the bathroom to pee a lot more AND the next day their weight dropped.   Whoosh, the weight was gone.  Somehow for some people that cheat meal triggers that whoosh.   

Can we avoid the whoosh effect?  Nope.  It's just how our bodies work.  However, it is very important to understand that this can be a perfectly normal phenomenon.    Why is it important to know?   Because now that I know and understand that what is happening is perfectly normal, I can stop obsessing about what seems to happen regularly.

Monday, November 05, 2018

Regrouping and the trail of death

Last week was a ROUGH week for me.  I didn't do good with exercise.  I didn't do good with eating.  I didn't do good with anything health related.  I tell you...it was a rough week   I faithfully wrote about it all...that's for sure.    I wrote about my meltdown on the mountain bike trail that occured on Sunday.   I also wrote about my serious contemplation in regards to why I'm even doing this.....and why I continue to write about it and thus sharing my shame.    It was a rough week in regards to my weight loss and healthy lifestyle.

By Friday I was feeling a bit more 'secure' in where I was and what I was doing.  Not quite back in the grove yet and not quite back to making plans and talking about it.  But at least a bit more in control of what I was doing.  Luckily, the weekend came and I had opportunities to think and situations that made me ponder in order to figure out something in terms of a plan. (A loose plan!)

On Friday evening as I was leaving work I received an email from a friend.  She knew about the aforementioned meltdown on the bike trail that occured last weekend.  Her parting words to me before we both logged off our computers was this.  "Get back out on that trail.  You can do it and this weekend you will conquer it.  I believe in you."   Well then......I couldn't back out of the ride now...Julie believed in me!   The rest of Friday was uneventful.  We enjoyed our normal low key evening of relaxation and pizza delivery as we recouped from our hectic work week.

On Saturday morning I hooked up with my friend Shantel for breakfast.  We had a great time talking, laughing, sharing and reminiscing.  I wasn't happy with the selfie that we took about halfway through our time together

My face looks SOOOO fat.  I mentioned it to Shantel and we got to talking about my weight woes.  She works out each morning AND she runs a few miles everyday on her lunch break.  She is a machine.  I lamented about my long 11 hour work days (adding in the commute) and how that doesn't leave much time for exercise.   She readily agreed.   But then I opened my big mouth and mentioned how I had previously contemplated and decided to sacrifice some sleep by waking up early so as to MAKE the time to workout before my normal daily activities began.   I also readily admitted that making a plan to do it and actually DOING it were two different things and I was struggling with the actual follow through of this sacrificial plan.   She looked at me and said "MaryFran, I wake up at 5AM every day and spend about 45 minutes to an hour working out with an exercise DVD".  Well then.....my plan was only 5:30 for a 20-30 minute workout.    I quickly volunteered her to be my accountability partner and to use tough love on me.  So, my plan was Monday morning.....5:30 AM...I'm up and at the very least riding the bike trainer.
On Saturday afternoon I decided to make a graph of my weight loss. I am an old fashioned girl and like things on paper so I can see.   I chose to only put in a monthly weight....and chose the weight closest to the beginning of the month and there are definitely some gaps where I wasn't weighing in (or I just don't have any weights recorded).   Each line represents 5 pounds...so it's not spot on...but it is a true representative of my overall weight loss journey.   It was sobering...but it was also very interesting.  I can identify a major life event with EACH of the big jumps upward in the graph.  I was losing weight...and doing nicely in 2013....and then found out my husband had cheated on me and boom my weight rose. I was losing again and then started the proceedings to the divorce and moved in with my parents...and my mother bakes all the time for some markets that she sells home cooked goods at so desserts readily available ALL.THE.TIME....boom another rise.   I was holding steady and maybe even dropping a bit and then Jason and I both switched jobs which eliminated a lot of our evening walks and we were so tired that the weekends were not as active.  Boom, my weight rose.   It was very interesting to see.

Ok, so what if I made this  graph while sitting on a stool in the kitchen while I watched the candy thermometer in the pan while I made a batch of fudge. (I will be freezing some of it for a quick little treat here and there.)  hey...no judgement on the fudge!  It is only right that I used/tested my new candy thermometer !!  (Amazon Affiliate link!) But regardless of the fudge...the graph really does show my journey and really makes me want to see that big downward curve to the bottom of the graph!!!!   Motivation for sure!!!!!

On Sunday we decided to head back to the trail where last week I had my meltdown   I was filled with lots of fear and trepidation!


  We grabbed the bikes and the first thing we noticed was that my tire was dead flat.   We pumped it up and headed out (the same thing happened last week and I was fine).  A half of an hour later we were at the trailhead and much to our chagrin the tire was partially flat. Again.   Grrr.   We pumped it up and did short forays from the car.  It was probably exactly what I needed....I was tired and my legs were aching....but by not pushing myself to the absolute limit, I was actually able to enjoy the ride!!!    The bike did bite me a bit!!!!  I was climbing a hill...out of the saddle and something happened and I flew off the bike.  Ok not really flew but I did leave the saddle and I did think I was going to go down.    The pedal bite into my leg and I have developed a bruise. 


So now it is 5:47 AM on Monday morning...and where am I might you ask??   I am sitting on my bike...on the bike trainer....spinning those wheels.  I will have 25 minutes on my legs today...before I even shower!    So I’m keeping my plan... you see...on the bike ride yesterday I kept vowing ‘I’m going to fix my issues and make every ride fun...even the long rides...even the hard technical rides.  But I can’t keep doing the same thing and expect different results.  The same thing..which was to be a dig through the week and a weekend warrior with exercise/activity, was NOT working...so to continue on that path was pure insanity.  So this week I’m trying something different! (If only it was light outside, I would run a bit too!)

Change...it’s hard but the efforts will pay off!


Friday, November 02, 2018

Finally: still plodding forward

It’s Friday...finally!  It was an ok week in terms of life.  Pretty standard and typical...work, eat, sleep and lots of driving.  It was a rough week in terms of my health and the new lifestyle that I’m attempting to make a habit.

So my week in review.......

Food

I totally fell apart on Wednesday.  100% fell apart.  I just didn’t care.  I was disgusted with where I am...what I’m doing.  Disgusted with the fact that my calories consumed are not that crazy yet my weight continues to be an issue...meaning I’m not losing.   Within my disgust...the addict in my came out and I ate.   I ate candy...it was halloween!  I had to right?     Wrong!  I didn’t have to...but I did!   On Thursday a felt a bit stronger and did a bit better, but I was still not doing fantastic!!!

Tracking
Who knows my actual calories this week. Because tracking?  I didn’t do it!

Weight
I was looking low last weekend on the scales.  My food was in line over the weekend and I was super active on Sunday.   And then on Monday my weight was super high.  And remained super high all week long.   (Thus the eating meltdown on Wednesday). 

Exercise
I don’t believe I knew what that word meant this week!   None...nada...zilch!   After the rough bike ride on Sunday, I just sat back and coasted. I didn’t even walk at work!

So there you have it...a rather poor showing of a week in the life of a person trying to change her life to be healthy.   The difficult week made me question my purpose...my reason for even trying AND my mission in writing on here.   I’m feeling a bit better...and feeling more ‘love for myself’ which makes me want to get this right and in line....but it’s an ongoing process!!!  But right now I’m just struggling.  The plan is to make it through the weekend....without any binges...without any major food upsets and maybe...just maybe with a victory.  I need a victory!

We shall see......in the meantime...I’m still trying!  I’m not giving up....I’m still writing my shameful embarrassing posts that show lack of success.

But hey...I can’t end it on a bummer like that can I???  So let’s just remember that ...
1. I am still head over heels in love. (And loved  back the same way...which is even more incredible!!)
2.  My cat is healthy and loves me...and she is honestly a hoot...we laugh at her antics daily!
3.  I have a job that supports me (likewise for Jason)...and with that comes the thankfulness for the rood over my head and the food on our table.
4.  Life is still going...I’m still capable of changing and making a difference...in my life and in others!!!

Yup...health wise it was bad...but life IS good.