Monday, September 28, 2009

You Might be New to a "Lifestyle Change" If...

See? I didn't call it a "diet". Because it's not, truthfully, so we must stop thinking of it that way. But, I have noticed that there are some tell-tale signs of those of us who are working on changing the food/movement-styles in our lives.

So, you might be new to your lifestyle change if:

  • Your typical 45 minute grocery store trip takes you 2 hours (because of all the label reading and trips to return items that you knew shouldn't be in your cart to begin with.)
  • You stare at other women's physiques (for comparison purposes-what does she weigh? body-fat %? does she work out? does she need a "lifestyle change" or was she born with a good lifestyle?)
  • You try looking distractedly at the ceiling of your car as you drive by your favorite fast-food joints, just to discover that this is an effective way to lose a limb, not fat.
  • You experiment with recipes to lower their fat/sugar content, and actually find them palatable. Your non-lifestyle changing spouse, however, won't touch the stuff. (Cheesecake with stevia, for the record, is not so good to people who aren't in starvation mode).
  • Your pets begin to look tasty. Where are those clippers?
  • You begin to dream in "points values" or "calories". The nightmares begin when the budget has been depleted.
  • You find yourself telling the whole world, via a website ending with "blogspot.com" about your fat rolls, sweat stains, and bowel movements (they help, come weigh in day).
  • Your kids ask to play the Wii, and you visualize stepping on a scale in front of a stranger for your "WI".
  • You give running/jogging a try; not toward a cream puff, or away from a mountain lion, but because it'll free up a couple extra points or calories for your fat-free, sugar-free, Giant Ice Cream Bar.

and last but not least,

  • You have hope.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

A/C is out, and other excuses...

Our upstairs A/C unit has finally rebelled and died. The guy who's supposed to come to diagnose the problem won't be here until Wednesday, so we get to enjoy the next few hot days here in the southeast with an oven for a bedroom. My treadmill and stationary bike are also upstairs, so I am now going round-3 with myself about how much I really want to get a good, really sweaty workout in today. (Or the next few days, for that matter).

I opened all of the windows last night, assuming that the overnight temperature would drop lower than the 84 degrees my thermostat was registering. We all went to bed with very little on, and left all bed covers at our feet. By 4 a.m., it had actually cooled enough (78, wooohooo!) for me to pull my top sheet over my well-insulated body.

My youngest daughter is a mainstay in our bed, and last night almost changed that. She is one hot little sucker. And she has the propensity to drape her sizzling little legs over me (she's done this since her babyhood). My husband and I spent the better part of the night tossing her back and forth like the hot potato she was. At one point (when I looked over and saw him half-draped off his side of our king sized bed, in an attempt to avoid contact with the spud) I took pity on him, and pulled our personal heater back toward the middle of the bed. I had enjoyed my moments of splayed arms-and legs-cooling, and felt guilty enough to share the wealth of our sleeping real estate.

This entire situation reminds me of the semester I spent in Europe. The family with whom I lived, like most in their country, had no A/C and no screens. The last few weeks of Spring ushered in one heck of a record-breaking heat wave, and I got to decide between being eaten alive by bugs while I slept, or waking up in the morning, medium-well. I chose the bugs, but waited to open the window until after my insect-attracting lights were turned off. This helped a little, but I still had many critters who visited my room at night.

Remembering that time of my life, I find new perspective: be grateful for the screens in our windows, a wonderful family I get to suffer with, and get my rear end on my bike and sweat on purpose. And pray for clouds.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Belly Dancing

That's what my belly does when I ride my recumbent stationary bicycle. Each time a leg comes around, it pops my good abdominal appendage, and it starts dancing! For the record, I would rather be performing the more traditional sort of belly dancing (for my husband's eyes only, of course!), but at least my sorry-chubby-self is working on it!

I have a good forty minutes most days of the week while I'm working up a good sweat, to think about where I am with my weight, food, and body shape. And today I was dismayed to realize that I was right about 200 pounds when I gave birth to both of my children. After they were born, I quickly dropped about 30 pounds, and STILL thought I was a huge mess. "Just look at us now!!!" scream my fat cells.

I hate to be hitting a 'new low' each week, only to realize that only a few years ago, the same weight was a 'new high'. Why couldn't I have come to my senses then???

I'm over it, for the most part. Because moping about what I've done isn't going to get me any further in this journey...so I will focus on the good stuff. I lost this week at my WW weigh in. If I do that each and every week, I will reach my goal eventually, and will work my tail off to insure that the numbers on the scale never creep back up.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Bit Off More Than I Could Chew

And, miracle of miracles, I'm not talking about food!

You know you've done it though. You're out to dinner with someone you're not super comfortable with, and you take a much bigger bite of your meal than you should have, and now you can't chew without showing the other person your wide-open mouthful, so you sit there in a panic: What do I do? Spit it out? Cover my mouth with my hand/napkin while I chew, mouth-wide-open. Can my dining pal tell that I fee like a chipmunk?

Rather than food, it appears that my eyes are not only bigger than my stomach, but also my cardio capacity and muscles. I have been working out on my treadmill, and I have not been milling. I have been seriously treading. So, some idiotic and adventurous part of me that should be shot, decided that I should go for the 40 minute pre-programmed workout that goes up to speeds of 6 MPH and an incline of 10. Yes, and I still weigh almost 200 hundred pounds and have been exercising for almost two whole weeks now....

So the warm-up went well :) and then the machine started going crazy-fast, and inclined like a horse who's rearing might, and I was running and gasping, and felt really stupid for not attaching the magnetic panic cord to my shirt, because who can spare the energy to reach over and reduce the speed or incline, when blinking is chore? And there's no speedy-reduce incline/MPH button. I was using my arms to pump wildly, because without them, this uphill torture just wouldn't work, and now an arm has to be set aside to push the button down something like twenty times to slow the belt to a reasonable speed.

The good news, is I survived, and was able to hit the buttons a sufficient number of times to prevent cardiac arrest. I "finished" my workout at a more reasonable pace, but let the machine finish its up and down incline routine for the remainder of the 40-minute program. At its steepest incline, I wished for some sort of strap to wrap around my back to attach to the treadmill, so I could relax into the hill and just move my legs (kind of like walkers of very large dogs do, when their dogs take them for a walk). But I toughed it out, and burned a healthy 348 calories.

I'll get back to that particular form of machinery-imposed torture in a few months, when I am more likely to be able to handle it. In the meanwhile, I'll be calling the shots on that machine.

Monday, September 14, 2009

What I Will Not Miss

This will serve as a reminder of all that I hated about being heavy when I'm thin and healthy again, with the purpose of helping never forget why I forge on with this lifestyle choice of mine. So here goes:
  • I don't care much for my belly roll. It makes my pants look lumpy, keeps me from wearing trendy clothes, and gets in the way when I shave my legs.
  • Puffy elbows are not attractive on me. Elbows were meant to be bony.
  • My face is bloated, and puffy.
  • I am deathly afraid of my picture showing up on various social networking sites.
  • I could go the rest of my life without hearing my young kids mention how, "Our mommy is the biggest one in the family, just like our Mama cat is!"
  • Weighing more than my husband is humiliating.
  • Hesitating to buy life insurance because the rates will be high right now, is probably not such a good idea.
  • My rear end is flat, and it's supposed to be round. The extra fat has created a lumpy, boxy appendage that isn't so cute in tighter clothing. But bulky clothing just makes me look bigger. Lumpy or frumpy? Take your pick.
  • My liver is probably covered in fat, and my internal fat likely crowds out my abdominal organs.
  • If I had to chase down a kidnapper who'd stolen one of my children, I'd probably giggle myself to death before I saved the day.
  • Sitting by the side of the pool in my capri pants (because I can't stand the sight of my legs in shorts right now and wearing a suit is enough to give me a cardiac arrest) while the rest of my family plays happily in the cool water, is not my idea of fun. And it's very hot.
  • Being afraid of bumping into old friends who've never seen me heavy is sometimes stressful enough to bring on a mini panic attack
  • My chest is heavy, bulky, and far too generous for my taste. I miss my lighter mammary glands, and so do my over-burdened bras.
  • Crossing my legs comfortably would be nice.
  • Running without killing my knees would great too.

I think that should do it for right now. I'm sure I am missing some, so I may add to the list as I remember other things.

What I really look forward to doing, is making a list of all the things I love about being thin and fit when I get there!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Scale Has Been Defeated!

I won, I won! And now my week of hard work is finally paying off numbers-wise. This, after I ate a horribly salty Marie Calendar's dinner last night, which gave me a migraine, incidentally.

I have saved nearly all of my weekly points up until now, and if I don't eat them by tomorrow, they will disappear. Perhaps if I skip them this week, more of my rear end will disappear instead?!

Yesterday was my day off from working out. My kids have me really busy on Fridays, and I have to get out of the house first thing, so it seems like a perfect choice. I know ladies who get up early (like, with the help of an alarm, gasp!) to work out or get a Bible study done, and I admire them. Not enough to do such a crazy thing myself, mind you. I am perfectly happy doing all of those wonderful things when the sun is high in the sky and smiling brightly at me. No need to get all nutty about it!

My "official" weigh in is on Monday evenings, but I don't know that I'll be giving them as much credit as my first-thing-in-the-morning ones. First, I refuse to starve myself all day to get an accurate number. Nor am I willing to wear the same thing each week. Finally, I am a serious water drinker, and figuring out how much I drank last week in order to keep consistent with this week's amount would be next to impossible. So I know I'll see weird fluctuations, and I'm ok with that. It's the trend in numbers that counts, right?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Belly Flop

If I'm looking for reassurance from my scale that I'm on the right track, and the pounds are just peeling off, then I'm looking in the wrong place.

I hardly ever use the word "perfect" to describe myself or my actions, but I'll be darned if my food and exercise habits the last few days haven't been just that: PERFECT. Has my scale honored me with a confirmation of all my hard word? A little encouragement? ANYTHING?? Nope. In fact, it shows that I've gained.

While the weight loss fanatic in me is going nuts over this, the logical, scientific, reasonable side of me knows that I've probably gained some muscle mass in the last few days, and my sodium intake has been rather high, so I'm probably retaining water.

Plus, what good is fretting about this anyway. What am I going to do? Go drown my sorrows in a milkshake (or 10)? That is akin to coming out of a store in a downpour without an umbrella, and in dismay, throwing myself belly first into a big puddle out of frustration that I may get wet in the rain. Productive? No.

Rather, I could be logical, acknowledge the bummer of getting wet, run to my car, and get on with life.

Monday, September 7, 2009


After a week spent with a dear, wonderful, so-very-sweet friend of mine, I'm back in town, and not much worse for the wear. I was GOOOOOOD with food most of the trip, but the last two days were a bit of a bust. I'm going to focus on those good days though, because when you're me, and you can put on 10 pounds in one week without much effort, slapping on just a couple is a good thing.

Finding that I need a boost and some extra motivation, I have decided to pop into some Weight Watchers meetings for a couple of months, if not for the rest of my life....They are offering one month free (after you pay for the first one; there's always a catch, ya know) so, being a sucker for a good deal, I've printed out my monthly pass, already tracked the protein shake I just drank on my online food tracker, and will spend the next couple of weeks hunting for the best meeting in my area.

I've also started reading a book by Kim Benson. She's a lady who lost over 200 pounds, and she's something else, I tell you. She started her last and finally successful weight loss attempt the same week her father died. If she can do that, I don't see what excuse I can use to wait until "next Monday" to take care of myself by eating foods and getting the exercise that my body and mind need.