Friday, August 31, 2018

The battle in my Mind

I was driving to work the other morning and started to think about where I am in this weight-loss journey and I was filled with mixed emotions. I have mixed emotions about where I am, where I’ve been, what I’m doing and everything. For me, the best way to work things out is by putting you down in black-and-white. So here goes.

I am still immensely proud of myself for what I have accomplished in the weight-loss arena. How many people can say that they were once over 300 pounds and lost down to where they were considered healthy and the perfect weight  (according to my doctor I was right in line) I am proud of that fact. But, on the flipside I am embarrassed to be the weight that I am right now. I know that the weight regain is all my fault. I can attribute stress of a divorce, changes in life, and a whole variety of other life situations as reasons why I regained…excuses.   But I am the cause!  What conflicting emotion!   Pride wars with self shame!

I want to lose this weight fast! Who wouldn’t. I did the restriction thing before, and it does work. (Obviously since I lost well over 100 pounds). I’m not restricting my diet this time, well  I’m not instituting major restrictions.  Consequentially, the weight loss is much slower this time around. I am not having the 2 to 3 pound loss each week like  I had the first go round with this weight loss journey.  However, I am also still eating pizza, ice cream, cakes and candy.  It’s just in moderation!   It’s slower.....much slower!  But that is where my mixed emotions come into play.  I have a friend on weight watchers who lost about 10 pounds in August!  (Go Julie). I have lost 12 JULY and August!    I vacillate between the desire to knuckle down and strictly  re-strict and lose this weight  fast (relatively) and the desire to stay the slow and steady course. I have chosen this course simply because the fast (faster) way worked short term, but it didn’t teach me how to live and still have a balance with the foods I love.  (Cakes, candy, pizza, etc).

Now if I have learned anything from writing a weight loss blog over the past 13 years, I have learned that best laid plans are subject to change!   I have written extensively about a belief or idea only to a year later do an about face and go down a different path.  Life changes, our bodies change as we age, our circumstances change and with those changes come alterations in our plans and beliefs.   I’m ok with that. What is working today may not work tomorrow.  Right now, even though I am vacillating in my emotions on my path, I am continuing forward with the belief that my path is teaching me long term eating habits that will set me up for a lifetime of healthy eating along with a healthy weight.   

So the warring emotions?   Let them battle...I’m still pushing forward on my chosen path!   Health is the end result, that’s what matters!!!

Victories from this week:
* I made cheesecake on Sunday...I ate NONE!
* I made cookies on Thursday....I didn’t stuff myself full of cookies!!!!!(in fairness I had two..maybe three...small cookies)

Trouble spots this week:
* I have discovered a delicious edible cookie dough recipe.  (I sometimes wonder if it’s even worth my time as I’ve been eating raw cookie dough with eggs and unbaked flour since I was a wee lassie).   It’s hard for me to resist when we have it in the fridge!   We finished up one batch and I was asked to make a second batch!  Yeah I didn’t say no, I made it...I ate it!

* I have in the past dealt with a sore aching hip..the pain radiated down the back of my thigh.   That has reared it’s ugly head!!!!

Lessons learned this week;
*Just because I love something that tastes delicious (like the edible cookie dough) I don’t have to have a huge serving.  I can easily make the very worst I would have to pick up an ingredient at the store which would delay the treat by a day at most!!! (Who am I kidding, I always have the stuff to bake something!). There is NO need to eat a ton....a small bite or two would be sufficient to satisfy my taste buds!!!  (The first bite is the aha moment anyway!!)

Weigh in
I have been holding steady at my current weight.  Not losing...not gaining.   I want to lose but I’m ok with the maintain.  After the crazy month of fluctuation this is a welcome relief!  Maybe my body is finally adjusting to whatever was causing the weight craziness!!!

Weekend plan
We have no major plans as of yet.  We have talked about going away.   Plus there are a few line items that have to be done (laundry, groceries, house cleaning) and a few line items on the list that are a want (shampoo the carpet, wash the quilt on the bed).   We have talked about wanting to do something fun and unless life gets in the way that’s a definite!!!   Time will tell!!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Frog or Prince

I have been struggling with something. It is not really weight related per se. It is however totally related to me and my emotions. We are talking about fear specifically about going public on a short book I wrote. 

Fear is crazy...I have feared losing weight..and it HAS sabotaged my weight loss efforts.   I know when I fear a trail on the mountain bike I struggle and ride horrible.  When I’m fearful I don’t have as much success.   When I’m opens up.  So how does this pertain to now???

A few years back I had written out my online dating experience as it happened, ending up with a cohesive chronicle/book.   I’ve always had this thought in the back of my mind of doing something with it, but I never really knew what to do.  And in the honesty,I never  have the time to really pursue anything too heavily. A few months back I decided to self publish this book on Amazon. I spent a little bit of time here and there on my weekends and I had some other people spend a little bit of time reading it.  Eventually, it was ready to roll. But then, I was overcome with fear and I didn’t do anything!!!

I have written some things before and published under a pseudonym and it wasn’t a big deal… No one knew it was me…no fear!!!  But this time it was totally different, I would be publishing a nonfiction piece under my own name. Everyone that read this would know this was my work. Talk about fear? Huge!

 A week or so ago I was talking to my friend Sue and mentioned that I was about  to pull the trigger and go live, but I was so fearful.  She gently encouraged me but I still didn’t come clean with the world!   But then last week I saw and heard a few quotes about fear and I knew that I couldn’t let my fears rule me any longer.  

So without further ado.  I announce the self published book written by yours truly!!!   It is available in print or as an ebook through Amazon.  (Through the link above if you want the easy method).  :-)

Frog or Prince by MaryFran Clingan. 

Monday, August 27, 2018

Weekend slug

Noooooo. I don’t want the weekend to end!!!  I am dragging on this Monday morning!!!!   We had a really low key weekend, which is what we probably needed. Our low key weekend gave me some insight to the weigh in pattern that I have been seeing, so that was good!  But in the grand scheme of things, my eating was horrible!!!  So without further ado, let’s get into the nitty gritty of my weekend!

An Indulgence
Friday at work I developed  a bad headache that drove me to the cafeteria looking for caffeine.   I found caffeine...and a chicken salad sandwich and...

It didn’t help...I really needed a second package to take the ache away.   But...I didn’t get it!!  I just ate the one package!!!  And boy was it delicious!!!!  I don’t feel you know how long it’s been since I indulged in one of these???  My favorite candy???   The important thing is that it was ONE package...and I was done.  I didn’t buy more over the and done!!!  (Oh and even with the caffeinated drink...I still made my water goal for the day!  I drank the soda alternately with my water while at work!  And I already had almost three down by the time I got the soda!!)

Bike riding
We actually hopped on our bikes on Friday evening and did a small jaunt on our local path.  We had skipped Thursday and felt like we should go on Friday to make up for the skipped day.  I can slowly feel my legs getting stronger!  

We didn’t sit on the bike the rest of the weekend!  No big ride like normal!   On Saturday we just felt like slugs and had no energy to do anything more strenuous than to walk through a store or two!  What happened on Sunday?  We had family obligations.

Slug activities

As I mentioned.  We were total slugs!   On Saturday we did our errands and went into a few stores. It was early on that we knew a bike ride was not in the cards for us. So we instead hit up the antique store near us and then went on a search for a retro game system!   We ended up buying the Sega retro system   It’s so neat to play the old games!  I see another purchase or two in the future, the Nintendo version and the Atari version!

 But other than that, we relaxed on Saturday. (And played video games)

Sunday we hit up another antique store, visited my mom and spent some time at Jason’s parents house to celebrate his belated birthday.
Of course we had to try on the fun hat at the antique store!

Well, let’s just say that my food was delicious this weekend!   It included fried macaroni and cheese, pizza, French fries (baked), edible cookie dough, chic-fil-a milkshakes and of course birthday cake.  I had veggies and healthy things also!

I actually smashed the pattern of my weigh-in’s this weekend!!!   Yes I did!  It wasn’t all good.  I never dropped to my Typical Saturday low weigh in weight. My weight stayed steady through out the weekend.  Im actually happier with that than with seeing the really low weight on Saturday just to see it pop back up by Monday!  

Some theories about why?
* We didn’t ride this weekend!  I have been wondering if the intense hard ride on the weekend is affecting my weight!  
*I drank no diet soda this weekend (typically I drink a fair amount on the weekends)

Who knows...but I’m going to try to keep the diet soda away!   And the biking...well that’s returning!!!

Sometimes, you just have to listen to your body and be a slug!   Sometimes our bodies need the rest!!!  Next weekend is a three day weekend.  I’m already counting down!!!!

Friday, August 24, 2018

I’ve Got This

Happy Friday!

I am so ready for the weekend!   My weekdays are long (my work day is typically 11 hours if I include the commute in the time). So by this time of the week I’m more than ready for the weekend.  But, being a Friday it is the perfect time for a recap of my week!   So here goes.....a little bit of everything!

We have ridden every evening but one this week.  The reason for the missed day?  My commute one day was extra long due to hideous traffic so I got home a half hour to 45 minutes it was already well past 6:30 when I got home....that coupled with a headache on Jason’s part just doomed that night!  We go as soon as we get home. And while we drag ourselves out the door to go, we always talk about how good we feel for having done it!   I’ve noticed the inclines getting a bit better....and I think part of that ‘hard’ feeling is in my head!  

My eating this week has been spotty.   I was so determined to smash the pattern  on the scales.  When I did everything right over the weekend and my weight STILL spiked up, I got disgusted.    We all know what happens when disgust takes over right?   No?  Well for me, I give up and eat what I want to eat!    Now, I didn’t totally give up!!!  So that’s a plus!  I still tracked.  I didn’t blow my calories by a fact I was still within my ‘large’ range of  allowed calories.  (The large range is is 1200 to 1600 calories a day....but I prefer to keep it down near 1200).   Where I slipped up?  I added in more favorite!!!  Carbs are not a friend of weight loss efforts for me!   Hey I tracked, that’s something, right???

So my weight was up three pounds most of the week.  I wasn’t too upset about the three’s within my 3 pound range that I am ok with terms of weight  fluctuation. Not happy with it because I want it to be low...but I’m accepting of it!!   The one day though I popped up to 5 pounds higher.  It scared me...and it was definitely NOT ok.   And that scared me into cutting the carbs and getting things back in line!   And happily the weight’s still three pounds higher...but at least I’m back into that three pound range!!

My Plan
I’m still happy with my plan and my efforts.   I know that in the long run that this is the best route to long term success.   I know that I could  heavily restrict and give up all forms of cake, pizza, ice cream or whatever and have incredible success.  I could eat salads every day. I did it works, I lost a LOT of weight.   But it also fails.  Just look at me and you can see it failed...I’m overweight...obese really!!!   It failed because it didn’t teach me how to manage everyday living....long term.   There is nothing wrong with salads every day...if you love them every day!!!   I love a good salad...but not every day.   Some days I love a good cheesy slice of pizza.   For me the restriction just   took away things I love.  The love of those things never went away.  I didn’t eat cake...but I still loved it!   So this time, I’m slowly figuring out how to have the things I love (in moderation) yet still lose weight and be healthy!!!!   I’ve got this...even during weeks when I feel helpless and lost like this past week!!!

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Kitten or Lion

I was in the shower this morning and wondering what in the world to write about today.  Seriously, what can I say?  My weight is up....still.   What more could I say?   I was down about it...and about my eating from yesterday.   I was really tempted to just chuck the idea of writing a post today. And then I saw a pack of small pocket packs of tissues (or whatever they are called...purse packs???).   I decided to take a picture and just call it a day.   But as I took the picture, strength grew from that deep place inside me and I knew what I needed to write.

First of all, let’s talk about my weight.  I haven’t smashed the pattern and yesterday I was hungry at work. I had a smashing headache.  I caved and went to the cafeteria.  I didn’t stick to a simple sandwich, I caved and got chips also.  Once I got to that point, I just didn’t care and when dinner came I didn’t care.  I tracked and I was still only at about 1600 calories. But there was a fair amount of carbs in my day.  (Ha...fair about a LOT).   I honestly didn’t care!

I cared this morning when it came time to step on the scale and I showed myself up in terms of poundage.  Self disgust and self doubt crept into my mind.  My weight has been dropping at a rate of a measley 2/10’s of a pound each week.  I probably just ruined that by eating all those carbs and the extra calories yesterday.  Why bother anymore!  I was feeling like a weak helpless kitten!

That is when I was tempted to chuck this week’s Wednesday post.  I didn’t want to give it’s a habit and i hated to pass it up.  But, what could I say?  

As I was grabbing my phone from beside my bed I saw the three pack of tissue packets.  I decided to share my tissues.    A few weeks ago my friend Sherry sent me an email with a picture of some tissues because of what it said.   I loved it and when I saw them myself, I purchased them.   I dropped them on my nightstand and forgot about them...until today.

The first pack of tissues.

Find your fearless.   Immediately I put that in perspective with my current struggles.  I am so fearful...fearful that my slow and steady plan won’t work.   Fearful on the mountain bike trails (sometimes..other times I feel free as a bird).  And I feel fearful of the scales.  Im fearful of sharing my writing with the world.   I’m fearful of NOT knowing how I am I weigh every day.  (And I’m glad I has shown me the pattern...if I only weighed on Wednesday’s I would not see the fluctuation and the lows and highs...I would just see it as a consistent high).  I’m fearful of never getting this weight off!  

Find my fearless....easier said than done...but it’s time to really search for fearless!

The next tissue pack?

Seize the moment.   There is no better time than now to make myself healthy.  Right now...every moment is a chance to seize the moment.   I may have indulged yesterday...but I have right now to do better.

And the third packet, the one that made me buy them?

Well then....believe in yourself.   Along the way I changed my blog title  o beliefinmyself. I need to remember to really believe in all ways of life!

It’s time to stop being a weak helpless kitten and instead roar like a lion!!!!

changed my blog title

Monday, August 20, 2018

This and That

Why oh why do the weekends go so fast?????   Or maybe I should be saying, why can’t I be independently wealthy so that every day is like a weekend???   Another weekend is in the books and it’s back to work for me. So this post is a bit of this and a bit of that...riding, weigh in results, cleaning and organizing and whatever else comes to mind.

Bike Bedroom

We have designated the den/second bedroom as the bike bedroom.  It’s also kinda the junk room.   Don’t know where to put something?  Drop it into the den!  It gets junked up quickly!   The dining room is also a quick easy place to dump stuff (shoes, helmets and  whatever else!). This weekend I decided to organize and try to find a home for some of those items that end up just sitting around.  So I worked on the den.   Really I just rearranged one or two things and put some stuff away.  I also added a rack for hanging packs and a small shelf.

Behind the door on the right is two more bikes.  You can see the black shelf on the right by the bikes...that’s what I added.  The bike helmets sit on top of that shelf.   (They were in the car so they didn’t make the picture). The next shelf down holds my hiking boots, my road bike shoes and the chin guard attachment for Jason’s helmet. The middle shelf holds two holds knee pads and elbow pads and the other holds random bike parts that we use more frequently than the parts that are in the bin in our storage closet.  The bottom shelf holds  both pairs of Jason’s hiking boots.  It works perfectly and really adds a sense of organization and order to the room!!!  The other big change?  Was the rack for the bags.

We have a nice place to hang our hydration packs...and to let the bladders dry! (And a close up shot of the shelf!). I want to get a rack to stack our bikes.  My brother has a wooden leans against the wall and  has space to two bikes .  (Not the wooden one...but the affiliate link gives the idea of what I’m looking at.)  The road bike would be hung high and out of the way. And in that way we would be able to eliminate some of the floor space that the bikes use.  (Although we will probably keep the old trek on the trainer!)

We did get out and ride.   We rode at Little Bennett Park again...but in a different trail.  LOTS of climbing.  Lots of tree roots.  Some rocks to navigate. A lot more technical than I am used to!  I did have to get off to walk around one or two things (mainly because I let my fear get to me) and I did have to walk up some inclines.   I was experiencing some weird cramping in my stomach throughout the afternoon (even before we that made the ride a bit uncomfortable.)  But, I felt refreshed at the end...and sore!

Hydration packs
The  hydration packs worked wonderfully!!!!!  We definitely loaded them up and strapped them on!   They say nicely on our backs.  The water didn’t slosh around messing up our balance.  And it was SOOO nice to be out and know that I had 3 liters of water with allowed me to drink when I wanted and not have to conserve!

Weight: did I break the pattern?

So, the pattern I wrote about the other day.  Where my weight is low on Saturday...and on Sunday pops up, and takes until about Thursday to start to drop again?  It was its lowest on Saturday. (By 2/10’s of a pound).  On Sunday it was still low.   I was cautiously optimistic!  And this morning?  I have popped up three pounds!   

In fairness, I did eat more yesterday.  I ate 1600 calories....which is NOT three pounds of overeating!!!  Oh and I also did mountain biking for 1.5-2 hours...which the apps (MapMyFitness And myfitnesspal) say earned me 2000 calories.   So the extra food should not be an issue!!!!!

I am so bummed!  Grrr!   But I’m still within that three pound ‘it’s ok fluctuation range’  so I’m ok...just confused as to why!!!  I’m thinking it has to do with the riding.   Because typically we ride on Saturday’s and my weight pops on Sunday.   This week we didnt ride on Saturday...and my weight didn’t pop on Sunday.   But when I rode on Sunday my weight popped on Monday.  So that’s my current theory!!! 

Friday, August 17, 2018

Smash the pattern

The scales have been displaying a particular pattern with my weigh ins during the last few weeks.  I’m not particularly happy with this pattern....and I’m determined to bust through the pattern.

 What is this pattern?  I weigh myself on Saturday and it’s my ‘lowest yet’ weight....which is awesome!  But then on Sunday or Monday my weight pops right up there about 3 pounds. It sits at the higher weight until Thursday when it starts to drop....and by Saturday it’s back to the low weight...and each week usually just a hair lower than the previous week.  So I’m happy because I AM dropping each week.   I have said I’m happy with small, slow steady losses...but seriously, 2/10 of a pound or 4/10 of a pound a week?  That’s slow!!!!  (Let me add that I’m handling the ‘pop up’ on the scale so much easier with that ‘three pound fluctuation allowance’ that I give myself.  I haven’t freaked out or gotten depressed, discouraged or upset!!! So that mentality really works!!!)

So what is causing this?  It could be a couple different things.   Each weekend I have really pushed myself with exercise.  So my muscles are aching and sore.  Muscles, while they are sore and repairing themselves do retain water.  Could that be it?   OR....Typically if I’m going to mess up and not drink enough water it happens on the weekend. So half the time I head into the work week trying to recover from a day or two of partial dehydration.  That could be it.    Maybe my eating???  Last week I did splurge on Sunday...I was over on my calories...I was ravenous!  I think that’s because of the extra calories I expended...but did that affect the scales???  I do sometimes through the week splurge on a dessert...but it is accounted for in my calorie tracker (and doesn’t always happen on the weekends...sometimes it’s a weekday!!).   So I’m not sure what’s up!   It is probably a combination of it all!

So how am I going to smash that pattern?   The weekend is upcoming.   No snacks!  No desserts!!  Lots of water!!!  I will be strictly watching my food and water intake through the work week and into  next week!!!  I can’t much help the exercise and muscles...because if the weather holds, I’m not giving up my bike rides and hikes!!

The water intake should be a real joy and easy to accomplish this weekend while we hike and or bike!   Jason had a birthday last weekend.   As one of his gifts he was given a card that said ‘pick out the hydration pack you want....’ (We have been talking about getting hydration packs for a LONG time, while we were hiking a LOT !!)   On Monday night he made his final choice and I ordered it from Amazon.  While he ordered his, I made the final decision and ordered one for myself!!  Mine arrived on Wednesday!   I ordered the Raven 14 from Osprey. (Amazon Affiliate Linkl)

His came on Thursday.  He chose the Raptor 14 also  from Osprey. (Amazon Affiliate link.)

We pretty much bought the same pack...Women’s version and men’s version.   We both wanted a bit of storage for some light gear and/or an extra layer of clothes. (For when I strip the outer layer during the winter!).  We haven’t used them yet...but I’m excited to get out there!!!

We are thinking that in his tool pouch we will probably have tools (surprise) but we read a review where someone used the tool pouch (built in tool roll in its own compartment on the bottom of each pack) as a first aid kid.  So his pack will have the tools and the plan is to make my tool roll/pouch a first aid kit.   Seems wise since we are together most of the time.

More to come...and maybe a full review on our purchases at a future date! But meanwhile....let me smash this pattern of weight!!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Empowerment : Tips to find the strength to lose weight

How do we keep our heads in the game of weight loss?  Some people call motivation, some call it inspiration, desire, focus, affirmation, reminders or any number of things.  . I’m not sure I like any of those words. So we’re going to just say how do we keep our heads in the game during this long journey called weight loss.

It is really easy (easier) to keep your head in the game when you’re seeing losses on the scale. We are a very results oriented generation.  But what happens when the results are just not showing up quickly or at all? How do we stay focused on this journey during those tough moments.

There are so many things that can empower us to find the strength to push forward toward our goals. I personally have used a multitude of different ways over the years. By no means are my ways and tricks the only way. My methods may not work for someone else in fact,  they may not work for me now but they did at one time, and they may work again in the future. That said, this list is it in no way comprehensive.

  1. Goal clothing.  I have personally used this methid in the past. I found a dress that had a vintage flair to it… I love 50s style dresses. I bought it, even though it did not fit. I hung that dress on my bedroom door so that every day I would see the dress and remember what I was working toward. I have heard lots of other people doing this, and it can be quite beneficial.
  2. Accountability partners. Sometimes, knowing that someone else is waiting for your report is enough to keep our head in the game. It is easier to slip up and fall off the bandwagon when you know that no one is going to know about it or care about. And over the years I have use this quite a bit with various people. (Thank you Sherry, Julie, Donna and some others.). 
  3. Sometimes just knowing that people are watching is enough to empower us enough to keep us on track! Tell people that you are on a mission to lose weight.  Knowing that people are watching me makes me ignore the snack table at work!
  4. Weight loss meetings. I know there are different meetings out there. I have a friend that goes to a meeting at her church. They have motivational talks, a weigh in  and sometimes they exercise together. Her program is neat because if they gain they put money into a piggy bank… The money goes to missions project so it is a good cause. I personally went to Weight Watchers for quite a while. The meetings were instrumental in my first successful weight loss and the lessons I learned helped shape me and teach me so that I’m prepared for my current weight loss journey.  But the best part of Weight Watchers for me was the meetings.   There are a few different aspects of a weight-loss meeting that can come into play. The first is the fact that it offers accountability. Knowing that I was going  going each week kept me on track. A weight-loss meeting can also give us new ideas, encouragement andthe spark   needed to keep fighting for a healthier life.
  5. Success stories. When I am working, focused and losing weight and happen to stumble upon a success story, I have always gobbled up the words.  It was an excellent reminder to me that weight loss is possible!  And yes, I said to myself each time, “if they can do can I!” 
  6. Pictures. Sometimes we can’t see our progress. Sometimes we can’t see ourselves what we really are. There have been a couple times in my life where I have had to see a picture of myself before I knew that I had to get myself on track! In Lori’s success story she talked about a picture that showed her the unhappy overweight girl. A picture that sparked her and got her  head into the game. On the opposite end of the spectrum though sometimes we can’t see our success either and when we see a picture it finally sinks in and empowers us. At the peak of my weight loss (the first go-round), I looked in the mirror and I still saw the fat Maryfran. And I had people close to me tell me that I was unrecognizable… My own dad saw me sitting on his porch while he and my mom drove up and he asked my mom who that was on his porch. But I still didn’t get it. There was one picture that cemented it for me and really helped me stay focused. My then husband one day was flipping through pictures on his computer and I happened to look over and see a picture of a woman posing for him. Immediately I got angry. Who in the world what is this Skinnywoman? (A natural reaction for someone that is in a failing marriage.). He started laughing immediately. The picture was me. 
  7. Reward. Over the years I also set up reports for myself. I look forward to getting those rewards. Sometimes it was small things… A charm for my weight-loss bracelet, a new pair of shoes or something that. I wanted. For a bigger milestone losses I chose bigger. I bought a new camera for one of my large milestone weigh ins. And knowing that you will get something you want as a reward can be motivating.
  8. Complements.  These are amazing when you get them and  go so far toward helping us feel empowered to push forward. I’ve had a few experiences that stick out in my mind...compliments that really meant a lot. You really don’t have much control over this one. But there is nothing like a complement on your success that motivates one to stay the course better. And it takes a while for people to notice your effort… But the compliments will help you keep up the effort. Just one word of caution, people are afraid to compliment so don’t be upset if you don’t hear the compliments!  I had people that were afraid to comment and complement me. One year for July 4 I saw friends of my parents for the first time in a year or so and they didn’t stay on the word even though I had lost about 100 pounds at that point.  The next day my mom called me and gave me the compliment over the phone. Their friends had called them to make sure that I wasn’t sick because I had lost so much weight when they found out that it was just hard work and pier effort they were profuse in there complement to my mother. There are also some people that won’t make comments simply because weight is such a taboo subject in our society. But you will get compliments, saver and treasure them.

As I said earlier, this list is in no way comprehensive.  There are so many ways and tricks to stay focused during this weight loss journey.   It is all dependent upon ones personality.  

Monday, August 13, 2018

Mind over Matter

Ahhh another weekend!  Delightful!  It is actually still ongoing as we both have a vacation day today (Monday!). But what a weekend it has been this far!  Of course the normal weekend housecleaning was done and the grocery shopping and errands...they were finished first thing so that we could enjoy the weekend to the fullest!   I rediscovered the phrase ‘mind over matter’.  We hit up some fun events, we visited one of our favorite places to go as a couple, and we have spent time together.   Oh and let’s not forget the celebration of a birthday!!!

Mind over Matter

Years back when I was running a lot, I got in the habit of literally having to ask myself ‘are you dying’, Simply because I wanted to give up when things got hard.  I wanted to give up so badly that my head told me I was dying!.  It was a constant in my head as I pushed myself harder and further each time I went out.   Now,  I can’t take credit for the question.   Anyone that watched ‘The Biggest Loser’ tv show years back hear Jillian Michaels scream at the contestants ‘are you puking or dying?  No...then keep going’   And my brother has told me on many times that it’s a mental battle...our minds are honestly convinced that we are dying!  But his advice is that  that in reality we are not dying.   Our bodies are amazing things...if things do get too precarious, then our bodies will shut down and we will pass out...which is the bodies way of re-regulating us, cooling us down, calming our breathing and heart rate...etc.  I don’t know how true that is, since I’m not a doctor.  But it makes sense.

A few months ago we went biking on a trail at the Little Bennet Park.  It was difficult on my old bike but I worked it...and walked quite a bit of the uphills.  I mentioned it to my brother.  In a brotherly way, he reminded me that I wasn’t going to die...that I should have kept riding and not walked!   Yesterday, on my new bike we went back to that same trail.   I’m not used to my bike, so at times I was quite terrified as I don’t really know how my bike will handle in certain situations.  And I almost went down...I somehow saved myself from falling into a pit of mud that I was trying to avoid. (And my bike gave me my first set of bruises as I wrestled with the bike to keep from falling in the aforementioned mud pit.).  But I wanted to ride  the WHOLE climb up the fire road (which I previously walked). And I was determined to ride the whole trail without putting my feet down.   That meant NO breaks and NO walking up the inclines!!!   I managed the fire road.  The trail...wowzer!  I was pushing it!  Hard.  I was breathing like a freight train!  I just wanted it to end...the last bit was bad.  (At one point I even muttered a prayer ‘Dear God when will it end!’  All I could think about was coming to the trail head, getting my bike an inch off the trail and laying down in the grass!  I was pushing it HARD!  So hard that from behind me Jason said ‘it’s not worth killing yourself’.  But by that point I knew I was close to the end and I KNEW I was going to complete it unless my body MADE me stop!  I counted my breathing to try to regulate the gasps for air!   I pushed!  And when I rolled my tires off the dirt trail into the grass at the trailhead I wanted to cry from the exhaustion exhilaration.  I sat on the grass for a bit...sipping water and then I was ready to load up the bikes and head home and on to our next activity.

Bike Race

Next up in the weekend fun was a bike race! No...not one in which I was participating!!!  I was a spectator!!!
It is touted as the only race of its kind in America!   I went to it a few years back with my parents and brother’s family.  Now that We live in Frederick where the event it held and the fact that Jason has  never been to the race, it was decided that we should attend.   It is a high wheel race.   Definitely neat to see.   Some riders come decked out in period style clothes.  

Some riders are on new bikes...some riders are on old vintage bikes (the oldest bike in the race was from the late 1880’s early 1890’s)
The winner just ripped it up!  In this race the riders have 30 minutes to make as many laps as possible.  The winner actually passed and lapped the second runner up!   He was strong the whole way through!!!  He was actually from Sweden, and if I understood the race announcer right, the winner is the owner of the only place that is still.  making high wheel the world. So here is a picture of the winner.

We were not at the finish line...that was around the corner on a different block...but our spot was perfect...shaded...front line and they had speakers set up so we could hear the announcers....but we didn’t need to brave the wall to wall people that was crowding the finish line area.  It was fun...and added walking to our list of we parked way out and walked down to the town center!  And Frederick had done a nice job with their downtown area!

A Visit South
The birthday boy (ok and myself also) decided to head south into Virginia to stay in Front Royal for a night.  We have always just really liked this area.  We have spent a lot of time in this’s the closest access to the Shenandoah National Park and the pretty Skyline Drive and miles upon miles of hiking!  Here is a picture from a January hike.

A second bike ride
We took our bikes to Virginia with us.   I had grand plans...I found a mountain bike trail last year.   (Sherando Park) We actually hiked it.   I didn’t remember it as being too we headed in that direction.    Oh was a bit over my head in technical skills!  Walking it made it seem easy...but it was a bit more than I could handle on a bike!!!   I was creeping and had to walk my bike around some steep downhill switchbacks and up some technical rocky inclines.  Ohh...and my legs were shot from the day before at the Little Bemnet Park ride.  And as if that wasn’t enough. The skies that were blue turned dark and lightening started to pop in the sky.  So it was a short ride.  Luckily we cut it short as it was a downpour of rain within 15 minutes or so after we got off the bikes.

We relaxed the rest of Saturday evening in Front Royal...visiting our favorite stores and eating at our favorite choice for dinner.  

Food and weight
My weight was looking good at each weigh in.  But I am nervous about the scales...I was ravenous on Sunday!  To the point of headaches from hunger.  I ate way over my normal calorie range.  I try to keep it at 1200-1300....I ate 2100 calories.  I did burn some biking that’s good!

Monday plans
We are still in Front Royal.  We will make our way home today. We plan on trying to ride today...if the weather cooperates.  It may be on the canal...the deluge of rain from yesterday (and the overnight rain that I believe we got) will have probably made the mountain bike trails too wet.  Overall though, I think it will be a relaxing day.

I will not forget the mind over matter lesson!  I experienced great joy and satisfaction from pushing myself and conquering what I set out to do!  My body is responding to my efforts.  My legs grow stronger and my endurance builds. I will be back to the mountain bike park that we visited near Front Royal. I will conquer it.  It may not be next week...or even next month.  I have some skills to learn and some comfort to gain on my bike...and a bit more endurance to build.  But mark my words, I’ll be back...with a vengeance!

Friday, August 10, 2018

Overweight and Healthy

Healthy? Me? No way!! I weigh 240-some pounds (dropping though)! Take one look at me, I am not the vision of health. However, when a coworker had to come up with one word to describe me, his word was healthy.

The paranoid side of me immediately jumped to the negative. I’m healthy and robust… A healthy eater… Healthy sized… But in all honesty, I am pretty sure this coworker didn’t mean it that way. (This is obviously not the nasty coworker.) His comment really made me think about and evaluate  where I am in this journey.   Guess what, I am pretty healthy. My weight may not show it at the moment, but I’m pretty healthy.

So what makes me healthy? What made this coworker classify me as healthy?  Even at an o see weight?  I came up with a few thoughts.

  1. My water consumption.   I always drink a fair amount at work. I drink multiple bottles of water. Most people sit with a soda on their desk. Of course some do sit with a bottle water at their desk but the water level never changes. OK, so that could be a reason why he called me healthy. 

  1. My food.  I don’t order out with everyone… I stick to fruits and vegetables. I don’t go down to the cafeteria every morning and get a muffin, waffle or other breakfast foods. If I need something… It’s usually a fruit or vegetable. OK… That’s a very healthy habit that would get me classified as a healthy person. 

  1. I am not the only one that  walks on their breaks and lunches. I am however probably one of the only few that do it consistently.  I walk every  day possible.  I am also pretty sure that I am the only one on our team that keeps tennis shoes and socks in my drawer to make my lunchtime walk more pleasurable. Yeah, that’s pretty healthy.

  1. When asked what I do on any given weekend… I mention bike riding or hiking if that’s what I did. Most of my teammates mention shopping, movies, watching TV… OK I do those things also, but I usually get at least something active into my weekend.

  1. Throwing into the mix is the fact that I don’t call out sick all the time….I never have at this job. I don’t sneeze and cough and hack while at work… I don’t limp around or talk about my aches and pains. So at first glance it does appear that my body  is in pretty decent shape also.

I am not discounting the fact that my weight is very unhealthy. But in the grand scheme of things…there are five healthy things versus one unhealthy trait, and not even a trait...more a a characteristic. I guess we can see which side the scales are tipped on.  Definitely the healthy side wins out. Isn’t that crazy to think about?

I’ve called myself a fit fat person in the past. Even while overweight, I ran a lot of races. I even rode some bike events while overweight. I did Zumba classes…High intensity...multiple classes.  I was overweight but I was pretty active. It’s the truth… You can be fit but still be fat. The fit though should eventually eradicate the fat.

So even though I am overweight… I guess I can call myself healthy. That is a totally new way of thinking for this 200+ pound girl.

And my quick update.  I have ridden my bike EVERY DAY this week!  My muscles (and butt) are getting used to the new bike and bike seat and I can feel a difference in my legs and how I feel...just from 5 days straight of riding.

My weight...

Last week: 242.4

This morning:  241.6

Loss this week: 0.8

Total loss: 78.4lbs

Loss since restart in June:  13 lbs

My weight was up for most of the week.  I wasn’t happy...but I just kept following my plan.  And it’s back down.   The ‘range’ plan is working well for me.  As long as I am within spitting distance from my low weight (3 pounds is what I’m aiming for) I am ok!  

I am concerned about this weekend...we have a three day weekend..a bit of traveling...and a birthday celebration. So my eating may be out of whack!!!   I should be active though!!!   

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Eating our emotions

Some interesting days!   I had some revelations  about the stress eating cake to light during the last few days  as I continue to process the issues at work and how I handled them on Thursday night when I chose to not indulge in excess food.   And of course i have now lived with my new bike for a few days...

Eating our Emotions

An update on how things are going at work?  So the stressful situation at work is obviously still there. It will be there until either I switch jobs or this other employee  leaves the team/company.  Friday and Monday were much better....she didn’t show up for work.  Furthermore more of my coworkers talked to me and told me how they are behind me 100% and confirmed my suspicions that this other person is just highly jealous.  That makes it better..somewhat. But in the morning my stomach still clenches tight waiting for whatever fresh hostility would be coming my way, because I’m sure it will read it’s ugly head again....sooner or later .  I am relieved when she is MIA (which she is quite often!).  

Ok ok ok, enough about the update...what about my revelations?   On Thursday night I wanted to eat but I chose to not eat my emotions.   (And yes I was proud of myself.).  On Friday morning I wanted to dive headfirst into some kind of amazing food as I worried about the day to come.  But I didn’t!   I didn’t because I realized a few key factors.   

* I recognized that my desire to eat all sorts of food was a coping mechanism.   A very unhealthy coping mechanism. This coping mechanism is to eat my will bring me comfort. Af least that is what my mind tells me.  I recognized the desire to eat for exactly what it was....not as true hunger  but as an effort to eat my emotions.  

* I recognized that eating my emotions would only delay this process of losing weight.  If I was LUCKY it would cause me to have a maintain on the scales. But an indulgence would most likely lead to a gain in the scales.   I sooooo did not want that!!  

* Once I recognized the previous two things, it was an easy conclusion to realize that caving to the desire to eat my emotions would only lead me to be more stressed...because I would then have the stress of the scales not moving on top of the work drama stress.  

* In conclusion, the biggest  shock of them all?  I got as much comfort....ok more....from the arms of Jason wrapped around me holding me tight as he listened to everything.   So seriously...find a good man (life partner) and problem solved!   Sorry ladies...Jason’s taken!   Now just to remember this lesson next food, hugs from Jason food, hugs from Jason food, hugs from Jason instead!  (How many times do I have to repeat this until I remember it!!)


I have been on target with my eating.   I had one minor bobble on Sunday night.   I made muffins for work. 

I ate some.  It was totally accounted for and I remained within my caloric goal!!!!

The beautiful bike

We rode on Sunday...a nice long ride!   On Monday we started a new habit!   We got home and immediately took the bikes out on the local little path!!

Granted we weren’t out there long.   But that was my fault.   The trail was flooded and I didn’t want to get my bike dirty!!!

On Tuesday we repeated it!  But this time the water had receeded and I deemed it ok to take my little beastly baby onward!   

It’s amazing how good I feel from that extra exercise in the evening!!!


My weight was at a low this weekend...and it has popped way up.  I’m disgusted.  But I’m ok with it.   Well not ok with it...but not distraught about it!!!  I think the biggest thing for me is the mystery of why!   Why has it popped up?   I know the first day was because I had inadvertently gotten dehydrated.   But that was taken care of.  The next day was the muffin day...was it the carbs?   But that was a few days ago.  I have ridden and excercised more so my muscles are getting a workout ...could that be it???   I just know that my weight is standing still at this higher weight.  I’m not giving up...the scales will catch up to my efforts!!!!

Sunday, August 05, 2018

It’s a girl!

A while back Jason  and I decided that we wanted to expand our ‘family’.   Come on now...when we found our apartment we made sure we had a spare bedroom/den. We knew we would need the extra space.   We have been working toward this goal for a while and it is time to announce it!!!   We have welcomed a new girl to the family!!!  Wanna see her??

Isn’t she a beast???  Welcome to our family Ms. Trek!

 Yes, we seriously started bike shopping a few weeks ago .  I almost hit the trigger last weekend on this same bike (different color)...but that bike shop didn’t have it in stock and said that there wasn’t any available yet in my size and it wouldn’t be available until mid September.  I actually started the paperwork to order it...and when he quoted the price it was 400 bucks more in price .  When I questioned him he said ‘oh you were looking at the 2018 model and the one you are ordering is the 2019 model.   I put the purchase on hold and he emailed me the quote.   I later found out when I looked at the email that he took it upon himself to ‘upgrade me’ to a higher (Yes...better but out of my price range) model.  He lost that sale!  So we kept looking.  More bike shops this weekend.  On Saturday...and on Sunday we headed in a different direction to hit up more shops!   And I hit pay dirt.   We found a bike shop that carried a LOT of brands of bikes...Scott, Trek, Santa Cruz, Cannondale and Felt.  So I had options and was able to really compare in person!  The Trek gave me the best bang for my buck.  And what do you know....they had one in my size.  They had a black matte one in my size...and I really liked that color.....but it was the 2018 model and while it was about $100 cheaper it was missing a component that I really wanted!  So I went with the light green (seafoam green???) color.  

Yes it hurt to spend the money!!!   I don’t like spending money!!!

We put my bike on top of the car and headed home to pick up Jason’s bike and hightailed it to the canal.   While the bike was purchased for mountain bike trails, I wanted to spend some time on the bike on an easy path before I hit up something more difficult. It is a dream to ride. I do have to get used to the fact that I sit on the bike and feel ‘higher’.  I’m not in any way stretching to reach the’a just the different geometry of the bike (and bigger tires) that make me feel this way.  And well...I sit differently on this bike so my muscles are a bit achy after riding.

It was muddy...and my new baby girl got quite dirty!!!

I did stop and enjoy the wasn’t all ogling my new bike!!

We ended up quite dirty on this ride....But don’t worry...we hit up a car wash on the way home!!!

So the extra room....aka the bike bedroom has a new new baby girl!!!  It’s getting crowded in there with four bikes!!!

I chose a hard tail.  I originally had a few ‘must haves’.      I wanted full suspension...but the price jump for a really nice  hard tail to an entry level full suspension bike was just too much for me right now.   I also wanted a dropped post (a button that I can press to make my seat drop or raise).  Jason wanted a few things for my bike also.  I’m happy to say that my bike has all the must have’s..mine and Jason’s...except for the full suspension.  Even without the full suspension, I’m quite happy.  

Let the fun begin...and welcome home little green girl!  Little...Hahahah this bike is a beast she’s not ‘little!’

Don’t they look nice together???

And yes...we have noticed that the labeling on his Santa Cruz matches the color of my bike!!!!

Friday, August 03, 2018

Take that: Stress comes to haunt my weight loss efforts

A month or so ago I wrote about some stress at work.  It was bad!   The stress simmered down and I was doing ok and things were peaceful at work.  In the meantime, I have gotten my eating under control.  So what happened when that stressful thing at work reared it’s ugly head again?  

There is a person at work that..well...she has taken an intense dislike for me.  I know exactly why. She had  made it clear whenever I moved ahead of her in terms of training (we started at the same time and since I learn quickly, I moved through the slow process of training at a faster rate than her).  I know this because she would message me telling me how angry she was with ME whenever I got moved to the next step of training.  Not very subtle eh?   Well she had gotten more subtle.   She jumps on every and anything I do.   I wrote about a month ago about the stress resulting in me not participating in a purchased lunch. It got really ugly.   Really ugly!  There were some very rude and cruel comments made by her...and my other teammates jumped on the bandwagon at that time.   But I overcame them..and by holding my head high, the people that laughed at and with her comments came around and had their eyes opened a bit.  Well it all simmered down until yesterday.   And now it’s back!!  Yesterday was extremely hostile! (Always when the manager/supervisor was not present...of course.   And mostly just one main person...)

I started my day yesterday (before the drama)  with a headache and it just intensified with the stress and open hostility.  I actually grabbed a more substantial lunch (versus my primarily fruit and veggie lunch that was packed), I downed some Advil, I drank caffeine and I tried to keep the headache at a mid level roar.   But by the evening I was a basket case.  I wanted to eat!!   I wanted to eat all sorts of things!!!  Bring on the snacks...the desserts...the candy...I wanted it all!!!

I didn’t indulge  though!!!  I held it together and made wise food choices.  

I worked my altered lunch into my calorie tracker.   I stuck with my planned dinner which was by some miracle already lower in calories.  I ignored the after work snack.  I DID indulge in a bit of ice cream after dinner.  (Small portion!!).  But I held it together!!!

And my weight showed a loss this morning.   I was 242.6.   That is down even further!   So my official loss from my high weight in  mid to late June is 12 pounds!   That makes my ‘acceptable weight range’ 242.6 to 242.6, to account for my daily fluctuations!  That range keeps going lower and lower!   I like it!!!!  I especially like my weight this morning...because that loss is in the face of stress and upset!!!  Take that!!!