Monday, November 4, 2013

STRIVING FOR PERFECTION

Tonight I'm sitting here, thinking about all the time I've lost on my journey.  All the backtracking, reworking, falling down, getting back up, falling down again.  I wonder why I keep letting it happen?  Why I don't quite seem ready to commit, and change, and move forward.

In my quest for health and fitness, one thing I do know, is that I am constantly concerned about doing it all perfectly...

Eat Perfect.

Track Perfect.

Exercise Perfect.

Blog Perfect.

I leave no allowance for falling short, and of course I fall short daily.  Instead of being happy about what I accomplish, I focus on how and where I fall short.

I am my own worst enemy, without doubt.

It isn't just in this area of my life where this is a problem.  It invades everything I do.  And ultimately, rather than motivate or push me to strive for perfection, it actually makes me shut down, run away from it and hide.

My photography

Writing my personal memoirs

Throwing a birthday party for my children

I am so worried about it being perfect, and I put so much stress on myself because I don't want to be a disappointment to myself or anyone else, and it all becomes too much, and I feel like I'm drowning, so I shut down. I quit.

And because of it, I lose out.  Lose out on something that might not have been perfect, but still so much better than nothing!

And today, that's what I'm thinking about.  What does it look like to try to do this without being perfect, try to do anything, without trying to make it perfect?

Until I figure that out, I don't think I have a prayer.

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

SNACKING, ISOLATION, & WORDS OF WISDOM

I have been on track since Monday, and it feels really good.

I still find myself struggling at night - I am a night time snacker and it is when I struggle the very most to stay on track.  I just want to put food in my mouth at night - salty, savory, sweet - it really doesn't matter.  In the mornings I am busy getting myself, my girls and my husband ready for work and school.  When I get to work I am BUSY most of the day and I rarely think about snacking.  BUT, when I get home at night and start cooking dinner, and then trying to unwind - well, the desire to comfort eat and snack hits pretty hard.

As I write this post I am consuming sugar free jello with a little cool whip lite on top to curb my current desire to chow down.  And I guess that is the tactic I am using to deal with my desire to eat at night...I am identifying low calorie snacks to carry me through.  So far I have come up with:

Sugar snap peas
Sugar free jello
Baby peppers w/ hummus
Pretzels (19)
94% fat free popcorn

It is working, thank goodness.  Ultimately, though, I want to do away with eating after a certain time at night for a whole host of reasons - weight loss being fairly low on the list.  But right now, I don't think its the time. I am trying to be kind to myself and not over do it while I get back in the swing of things.  And right now, making a menu, being prepared, journaling my food intake, and staying within my calorie range are about all my world can handle.

There have been a couple of posts lately on other blogs that have really resonated with me and helped me feel not quite so alone and isolated on this journey.  Realistically I know there are millions of people out there trying to get fit and get healthy - so I'm definitely not alone.  I have met so many wonderful people through this blog and other blogs, have received such nice comments and words of encouragement...but strangely, at times I just can't help but feel lonely and singled out because I HAVE to go on this journey - not going on the journey isn't really an option.  It helps knowing there are others out there feeling exactly like I do right this minute.  Here are a couple of the posts that have helped me recently:

I read a post by Katie at Runs for Cookies the other day where she said the following:
Sometimes I just get so sick of having to measure out everything I eat. I know that I have to do it (I've tried "mindful eating" lots of times, and it just causes me to binge). Through tons of trial and error, I know that measuring and counting (whether it's PointsPlus or calories) is the best way for ME to maintain/lose weight. But sometimes I just get fed up with it, and wish I could eat like a "normal" person. Anyway, I know my weight will be up tomorrow, but I also know if I get right back to measuring and counting, it'll come right back off.

YES! YES! YES!  I feel exactly the same.  Knowing that this is FOREVER, and that every day will be a day I have to focus on this for the rest of my life - well, sometimes that just plain overwhelms me!!

I also read a great post by Marion at Affection for Fitness that she just posted tonight.  She has had a tough couple of days and she blogged about that...but what I really liked is that rather than focus on the difficulties, she focused on what she was doing to get herself through.  Here was my favorite part:
To be clear to you and myself, I am a food addict. Some part of me has absolutely no problem overeating quite a bit on any given day. And that trait is going to be with me for the rest of my life. And I wish it would go away, but I concretely know that it won't. It doesn't help my confidence to know this vulnerability.
It is on these types of days that it bothers me to know that my health situation is constantly dynamic. I can never rest and forget about it because we keep our health, fitness, and weight by working on it on a daily basis. Yes, daily upkeep is required.
I think hearing it stated so clearly, and so directly is refreshing.

I will be heading to the office early, which bums me out...BUT, it is Friday, so I will rejoice in that!!

Tomorrow is another day on the journey.  I feel ready for it.

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Monday, August 12, 2013

I. AM. READY!!!

I woke up this morning and I felt it...

...it was there again....

My drive, my desire, my motivation to eat healthy, track my food - to make this journey happen.

I CAN'T TELL YOU HOW GOOD IT FEELS!!   I MISSED THIS FEELING SO VERY MUCH!!

Can I tell you what made the difference??  YES, YES I ABSOLUTELY CAN!!

I have blogged many, many times about how important planning and organization are to me in order for me to be successful.  When I start to get disorganized in any area of my life, before long it will infect all other areas.

WHY?

I have a theory!

Because both my husband and I work outside of our home, it can be tough for us to stay on top of things ALL the time.  Although we can typically rebound from a small amount of disorganization, when the disorganization goes nuclear and we have multiple areas that are going up in flame, AND we can't seem to find the time to pull ourselves out of it - well, we collapse.  It overwhelms us and frankly, we shut down.

This summer between the weekend trips, the birthday celebrations, the long hours at work, kids going back to school, yard work...YOU NAME IT...our disorganization status hit DEFCON 5 - the alarms sounded, the flashing lights went off, and we basically fled to the bunker rather than face the menace.

Well, on Friday, I took a vacation day to face the menace.  I did laundry, I cleaned, I did yard work, I balanced our budget, I menu planned, I grocery shopped...and it felt GREAT!

This morning, when I woke up, I knew all the hard work over the weekend to restore order to our lives was worth it.  I felt READY! I felt MOTIVATED! I jumped out of bed, got ready, packed my breakfast AND my lunch, filled my water bottle and headed out the door.  As I write the post, at the end of the day, I can proudly say that I tracked my food intake today AND stayed within my calorie range.

PLANNING AND ORGANIZATION.  The undisputed key to my success.

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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

TOO MANY DAMN THOUGHTS

Despite my best intentions (you know what they say about good intentions, right??), I continue to struggle.  I make it a couple of days, at most, and then I just give up. There really isn't any other way to say it...I simply give up.

I think I am over thinking it now.  Honestly, even though it is difficult, weight loss is a fairly simple formula.  So, why am I struggling?

I've had so many different thoughts about why this is so damn hard right now!

  • I'm putting too heavy a focus on weight loss and really need to shift my focus to exercise (not sure if I believe this or not - I think both are important, particularly in establishing a true healthy lifestyle)
  • I'm subconsciously afraid of becoming thin (not sure about that one either - I've really thought about it but I just can't find anything there...now, with that said, it seems like I do an awful lot of self sabotage just as I am starting to see real success)
  • I'm just too busy and I don't have the time or energy to dedicate to this.  Look, I am going to whine a little.  I am a working mom.  I have an awful lot of guilt about being a working mom.  I get up early, go to work, come home later than I should.  I'm exhausted when I get home.  I have a children, a husband, and a household that still need my attention.  Anytime I spend doing something other than focused on these things makes me feel horrible.  HORRIBLE. So, every night I come home and say "I'm going to work out tonight", but then I find a million reasons why I can't possibly spare 30 minutes.  At risk of offending some stay at home moms out there, I really can't take hearing another one complain about how busy they are...play dates, aerobics classes, yoga classes...GIVE.ME.A.BREAK (Yes, folks, this is sour grapes in action.  SOUR GRAPES)!  THEN, then I remember that my dear blog friend Leigh - well, she's a working mom, a weight loss superstar AND now a kick a** runner!!! 
  • I'm jealous of skinny biyotches (excuse me to all my skinny friends - I really do love you) who can eat whatever the hell they want and never gain a pound! (Green. Eyed. Jealousy. Monster!! Yes, that's me)
  • I just want to live "normal" - seriously, this is a thought process I have!!!  Like overeating and gaining weight uncontrolled is NORMAL!  (I think I may need to evaluate my definition of normal!)
  • I've become so overwhelmed and disorganized in other parts of my life - Laundry overflowing, housework - so far behind, finances - ugh!, church life - non-existent...and all of this makes me feel like I just can't get control of anything (yeah, so letting my weight balloon out of control...that is going to help, right??)
Too, too many thoughts...and at the end of the day, I think the answer is to JUST DO IT!!!  

**deep sigh**

I've heard from so many of you out there who are struggling too.  Thank you for your encouragement, thank you for sharing your stories!!  I really do appreciate it.  I know that we are capable of making this momentous change in our lives...I think we all need to believe that too...and then JUST DO IT!

I don't know if I will have great stories of success to share right now, but I am going to stop avoiding this blog like the plague.  

By the way - I've gained 19 lbs. back.  **sad head shake**

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

HITTING THE SKIDS

I've been avoiding my blog - avoiding it like the plague...avoiding having to come here and admit that my weight loss journey has hit the skids.  But it has....and frankly, I am having a hard time getting back on track.

I know I am full of excuses right now, and I know I need to stop making them.

I read a blog post about a week ago about being a victim - allowing yourself to be a victim by turning to food.  The post bugged me at first...but I have thought about it so many times since I read it, and I realize it bugged me because it is true.

I am allowing myself to be a victim - a victim of my emotions and my desire to "self medicate" with food.  I allow it to control me, allow it to make me feel sad and feel bad about myself - I allow it to victimize me.

I am trying to get my head right.  Trying to stop being a victim.

Deep Sigh.  It feels harder than it should.

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Friday, June 28, 2013

I DON'T KNOW WHAT ELSE TO SAY

Last night my sister came over for a few minutes and we were chatting about our weight loss efforts.  I told her that the last month has been a real struggle - one day I'm on track, the next day I'm not - I'm all over the place.  She has also had some struggles.  We talked about what we thought were some of the reasons for our struggles, trying to understand just what is dragging us off track.  For me, I felt the following were some of the culprits:
  • Summer - it makes me want to be footloose and fancy free - this applies in EVERY aspect of my life.  I don't want to be held to a housework schedule, I want to have more freedom to come and go at work AND it appears I also want to be able to eat whatever I want.  
  • Road trips / Vacations / Weekenders - I really, really, really struggle to stay on track when I am going away for a vacation or weekend getaway.  I don't plan well for the road trip so instead of having healthy snacks readily available, I end up eating junk food.  I don't make good selections at restaurants either.  It just kills me.  Over the last month I have been to Moab, Lake Powell, California (we had to go to California last week due to a death in the family - we ended up driving because of short notice on the funeral arrangements.  It was a long road trip there an back!).   Being constantly on the go has thrown my routine into shamble and bottom line on this one, I just don't spend the time I need to making a plan for success.  
  • Empty Nest - My kids have been staying with their grandparents for the last 3 weeks.  It has been really difficult to want to come home from work and prepare dinner without them there - so we just end up eating out.  We also have been going on a lot of 'dates' while they have been gone, and that usually entails some type of food too.  
I feel like as I type this it might sound like I am just making a lot of excuses for myself - but honestly, that is not what I am trying to do.  At work, when there is a problem, we go through what we call a Root Cause Analysis, which is designed to identify the true reason that a problem or issue is occurring.  We use a tool called a Five Why evaluation - we ask WHY over and over and over until we feel we really can't ask it anymore...

Q:  Why are you struggling to eat healthy?
Q:  Why does the Summer cause you to eat unhealthy?
Q: Why do you want to feel footloose and fancy free?
Q:  Why do road trips / vacations cause a problem?
Q:  Why don't you take the time to make a plan?  What is getting in the way?

You get the picture - we keep pushing and questioning until we feel we have gotten to the root cause - the true underlying issue. Once we FINALLY identify the root cause issue, we make action plans and implement counter measures to either mitigate the root cause, or completely eliminate it.

I feel like getting to root cause is just as important in my personal life as it is in my work life.  I need to remind myself that rather than just say "you are just making a bunch of excuses", I need to take the time to really understand and question what is going on so that I can make real, effective plans, and then implement them. Could one of the root cause issues be "I'm lazy"?  I'm sure it could be - but honestly, you can see the WHY there, right?  WHY AM I LAZY?  More often than not issues are far deeper than a vague generality like that.

ANYWAY, I'm trying to get to root cause.  Trying to figure out why this time of year, and this particular stretch of road on my weight loss journey seems to consistently give me issues.  I'm not there yet, but I'm hoping I get there.   I want to be successful navigating these bumps in the road, and right now I am struggling FAR more than I want to.  I want to have a good, solid strategy - because there is no doubt that there will be more bumps in the future on this long journey.

With that said, I recognize I need to push myself to stay on track.  If I let things backslide that IS NOT going to help me get to the root cause of my issues.  Ultimately it is just going to make it more difficult mentally, emotionally, and physically to get where I need to be.  Again, at work, doing a root cause analysis on a problem doesn't mean that we just let the problem continue unchecked until we figure out root cause.  There are times when we simply have to FORCE a solution - slap a band-aid on it - until we can get to a much smarter, more efficient solution. I have to accept that this is no different. I am going to have to FORCE a solution - slap a band-aid on - and STOP THE BLEED.  Right now, I think the band-aid is simply pushing through, no matter what - even if it feels grueling and a little miserable.  Clearly I can't maintain that long term - grueling and miserable isn't sustainable.  I  have to accept it is going to be HARD for the time being, and I need to steel up for that.  I also need to remember that if I put the work in, I can make sure it will be MUCH easier in the future.

Just writing the above paragraph makes me breath a deep, frustrated sigh - ugh.

Last night as I was talking to my sister, I also told her that I hadn't blogged in a while.  She asked me why and I told her that I just didn't know what to say, to which she responded, "JUST SAY THAT!  Say you don't know what to say - say you don't know why you are having a hard time - but don't just go radio silent."

So, here I am, saying - I DON'T KNOW WHAT ELSE TO SAY.  I am struggling.  I am all over the place.  I have really good days, but more REALLY bad days right now.  I can't seem to get my head right.

Not very inspirational - not at at all - but it is true.

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Saturday, June 15, 2013

06/15/2013 - WEIGH IN & THE WEEKEND!

It has been two weeks since I last weighed in, and honestly, I didn't expect to lose any weight when I stepped on the scale this morning.  Today was more about getting back into my routine and holding myself accountable...but of course, I didn't want to see a big gain.

These last two weeks have been filled with a lot of ups and downs where my nutrition is concerned:

  • A full blown binge
  • Several days WAY above my calorie range
  • LOTS of eating out
  • Inconsistent vacation eating
  • No groceries in the house
  • Movie popcorn mania
  • FINALLY four days back on track

You know what, even though it has been rough, I don't feel bad about it.  I am finally starting to realize that this is a learning process, and with any learning process, there are going to be times when you struggle.  BUT, if you keep trying to move forward, keep trying to learn the concept, eventually you get it.

Coming into the summer months has been hard for me - and frankly, it has been the downfall of my previous attempts to shed the weight on MANY different occasions.  The change of season brings a whole host of different activities and a greater desire to feel wild and carefree, and that means that the routine has to be adjusted to accommodate.  I haven't ever made the adjustments in the past - I just kept trying to do the same old thing and eventually that just led to failure.  But this time I am determined to make the changes and make it through AND accept that some bumpy road is part of the journey and NOT the end of the world.

SO, with all that said, here are my weigh in results:



369.00 lbs.  That is a gain of 1.4 lbs. from the last time I weighed in, but honestly, I feel good about it.  I feel good that I am still in the 360's...it doesn't feel like I lost too much ground and I don't feel demotivated by that number!

This next week my focus is going to be:

  • Consistently eating on my routine / schedule - when I eat on a schedule, I do so much better.   I never get to a crazy, hungry, ravenous state.  I also feel really satisfied and in control.
  • Increase daily consumption of fruits and veggies - VOLUMETRICS!  I need to fill up on these types of foods, which keep me satisfied, but don't eat up a lot of calories.
  • Staying within my calorie range
  • Getting my full daily water intake
  • At least 3 days of exercise - 30 minutes minimum
  • No eating out
I feel really good coming into this next week, and I know that I am going to have a successful week - no matter what that scale says next Saturday.

This weekend Chris and I are empty nesters!  The girls have gone to Colorado to stay with their Grandma and Grandpa, so it is just the two of us!  We plan to:
  • RELAXING
  • Cuddling - WHEREVER WE WANT TO!
  • Listening to our music REALLY loud, since there are no kids to complain about it
  • CHURCH - we haven't been to church in a while and I just feel spiritually starved!
  • HIKE - Chris wants to hike to Mirror Lake tomorrow for Father's Day.

Hoping you all have a fantastic weekend!


P.S. - I just realized that I have 1 month and 4 days until my birthday - and my goal is to be at 350 lbs. by my birthday.  Honestly, how awesome would it be if I could score 349 lbs. by my birthday!!  THAT is my goal. 349 lbs!  That is 20 lbs from now!!  I don't know if I can do it, I am usually around 12 - 16 lbs. a month.  I'm still going for it!
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Thursday, June 13, 2013

DAY 3 - I KNEW I COULD DO BETTER!

Today I had a really strong day, and it felt GREAT!  After 2 days of struggling to make it through, it was nice to get a day in that didn't feel like it was nothing but an uphill battle.

On my lunch break today, I finally got to the grocery store, which made a big difference in my ability to stay on track.  We haven't had any fresh veggies or fruit in the house since we got back from Lake Powell, and it has made things so much more difficult!  So, when I walked into the produce section of Costco, well, I basically went insane.  I ended up walking out with grapes, oranges, bananas, snap peas, baby bell peppers, grape tomatoes, salad - and tomorrow, I will be going back for a big back of apples.

As strange as this sounds, sometimes I forget how important it is to have healthy, fresh produce readily available!!  It just makes it so much easier to stay on track, because I can supplement entrees with foods that will fill me up, without the big hit to the calorie bottom line.

I also picked up some Nugo bars, which just happen to be my favorite afternoon snack.  I haven't bought them in a long time, and I just don't understand why not!!  They are a little pricey, but seriously, they fill me up, keep my afternoon/evening snacking under control, and have less than 200 calories!  I think that is worth the $$, which, by the way, is far less than a convenience store snack, which is what I would be eating if I got ravenous and fell off the wagon!!

After my shopping spree I headed back to work - and had to haul my entire purchase inside and store it in the office fridge!  Embarrassing, yes, but I honestly didn't care - not even a little!  I was just so happy to have groceries!

When I got home from work, I wasn't feeling much like cooking, but I was determined to get back to eating at home instead of eating out.  A friend at work suggested I try a recipe for Hawaiian Haystacks. I wasn't really wild about the idea. I have only eaten Hawaiian Haystacks one time in my life, and I wasn't a big fan.  I don't love cream of mushroom or chicken soup, and typically the chicken gravy that is used on Hawaiian Haystacks is made with one or the other.  BUT, my friend was insistent that this recipe would change my mind because it didn't use condensed soups of any kind.  She even pitched the fact that I could load them up with lots of fruit and veggies, knowing that would speak to my healthy eating.  I decided to give it a try.

WHY NOT!

It. Was. Delicious!  I was so thrilled with how it turned out!  Once I piled the toppings on:  black olives, green onions, mandarin oranges, cherry tomatoes, a little bit of cheese, crunchy chow mein noodles - well, I was in heaven.   I was even happier when I calculated that calories for the meal - rice, chicken gravy and all my toppings came to 600 calories.  I usually like to stay around 500 - 600 calories for dinner, so this was PERFECT!  I will definitely be making them again.  If you are interested in the recipe, you can find them here!  If you try them, let me know what you think!

So, three days back on track - 2 pretty shaky, and 1 very strong.

I KNEW I COULD DO BETTER!




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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

GETTING BACK TO THE ROUTINE

Life has been so crazy around here since Memorial Day weekend!  I already blogged a little about our trip to Moab, UT.  It was very last minute, very crazy, and absolutely fantastic!  I actually tracked my food intake while I was gone, and did a pretty good job staying within my calorie range.  We were VERY active while we were there and I was burning calories left and right, so I wasn't too worried overall.  I definitely still plan to write a couple of posts about our adventures there...but in the meantime, here is one of my favorite images we captured - live and in person! Seriously, seeing this after a pretty strenuous hike and 15 years of convincing myself I couldn't make that hike again - well it was worth every ache, pain, and gasp for breath!



When we got home from Moab, I was hit with a case of stomach flu (or food poisoning, I have no idea which).  I had 36 hours of pure hell while everything I had eaten on Monday made a reappearance in one unpleasant form or another.  Sadly, I kept thinking that as horrible as it all was, it was probably going to be really good for my weigh in - Silver Linings? Or time for therapy?  I am leaning towards the latter!  I snapped a pic of me after the ordeal (hopefully it is crystal clear which pic is which) and put it side by side with a pic of me after I was cleaned up and back to normal.  I can't help but share it here, because it is SO funny!



Seriously...I showed this pic to my boss at work and he said, in his very thick Indiana drawl, "Oh my hell, that looks like one of those before and after meth pictures!"  I laughed so hard...because it is so true!

After my bout with the Stomach flu, I didn't feel much like eating for the rest of the week, which should seem like a good thing, but honestly, it really wasn't!  Being out of town for the weekend had thrown me off my schedule - not terribly, but enough that I needed to get back on track quickly.  Stomach flu, and my subsequent non-existent appetite, made it impossible to truly get back into my routine.  So, even though my weigh in went well that week, I was struggling to get back into the swing of things.

That was a bad thing, because the craziness had only just begun.

The weekend after we went to Moab turned into a marathon yard work weekend.  Chris and I pulled weeds, we removed dead trees, returned them, bought new ones and planted them.  We planted bushes, plants, mowed...we worked our butts off!  It was a really productive weekend outside - inside, well that's another story - but again, I struggled to stay on routine.  Being outside all day meant we didn't really eat a meal, but rather snacked.  And when we were done, well, we had no desire to cook...so instead we ate out.  Again, I technically stayed within my calorie range, but frankly, there is more to this than just the calorie count!

I NEED ROUTINE!

Going into the next week we were exhausted - and it wasn't about to slow down!

On Tuesday my mother-in-law came down to pick the girls up for their extended summer visit with her - that meant Monday was spent cleaning, doing laundry, packing and prepping.

Wednesday was the last day of school for my girls, and they both had to take treats, so Tuesday - in addition to hosting my mother-in-law, I also had to get treats and other end of school items handled.

Thursday Chris and I had to get everything prepped, packed and loaded for our trip to Lake Powell as we were leaving on Friday night. We had decided that the lawn would have to be mowed before we left, so as soon as I got home from work I started mowing.  That somehow turned into a marathon evening of yard work - finishing up what we hadn't from the weekend before.   SERIOUSLY, WHO DOES AN IMPROMPTU YARD WORK MARATHON ON A THURSDAY NIGHT, AFTER WORK, WHILE GETTING READY FOR A MINI VACAY???  We also managed to pack the van with all of our camping gear and get ready to head out on Friday as soon as we got off work.

WHEW!

Friday after work we got home, finished up last minute preparations and drove to Lake Powell.  We left home at around 6:30 PM and we got there at 12:30 AM!!!

Saturday, Sunday we enjoyed the Lake (it is amazing, and despite the absolutely punishing, unseasonal heat, we loved every minute of it) and on Monday we headed home.  We got back at about 6:00 PM.  We proceeded to unpack, clean the van (seriously, we detailed the thing - no idea where the energy to do that came from) and then we CRASHED hard.  Here is a one of the fantastic scenes we took in at the Lake in a side canyon where we didn't see another human being for 2 full hours!! It was like our own little piece of heaven!



Getting up for work on Tuesday was like death!

ANYWAY, long story short - I have not been on any sort of routine for two weeks!  Yesterday it was hard to make it through the day - I started out really strong, but as the day went on it got harder.  I managed to hang on, but I was definitely fighting to make it happen!  Today was the same. I need to go grocery shopping, I need to get a menu put together - not being on top of that is making everything harder...BUT, every day that I make it through is a step back to routine and sanity!

I'm getting there!

I know my weigh in won't be great on Saturday - but honestly, right now I am focused on getting back to my routine, getting back to organized!  If I can make some serious progress on those things, I will be thrilled!


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Tuesday, June 11, 2013

I'M STILL HERE - JUST SUMMER BUSY!!

I just wanted to write a quick post to let you know that 1) I am still here!! 2) I am still committed and on my path!!  3) I still love writing about my journey - even the ugly parts!

SUMMER IS HERE!  And boy, have I been busy!   My girls are out for the summer, my mother-in-law came for a visit, we went on another weekend outing - I haven't even shared my fantastic adventures in Moab, and now I have more fantastic adventures from Lake Powell, UT to share!!!

I DEFINITELY have some thoughts about staying on plan and vacations!  BOY, it is harder than I think it should be!

Weigh in didn't happen on Saturday because I was no where near a scale...BUT, it WILL be happening this Saturday!

Anyway, I have a lot to share, so stay tuned!!

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Monday, June 3, 2013

THERE CANNOT BE A FOURTH!

I feel schizophrenic right now...waffling between a dedicated, motivated, committed woman on a path to reach her health and fitness goals AND a woman who can't seem to stay in control, and sometimes acts like she doesn't even want to!

What. The. Hell!

I had a great weigh in this week - GREAT!  I welcomed a new weight "decade"...it felt great!  I am 2 lbs. away from my lowest weight in 8 years...and what am I doing?

FALLING. OFF. THE. WAGON!

I have really struggled to stay on track the last three days - a lot of eating out, over my calories Saturday, Sunday and Monday! Failing to food journal....I swear, I am one Coke away from complete melt down.

So, of course, I just keep asking myself WHY?  Why am I allowing this to happen?

IS IT THE CHANGE OF SEASON?  Desire to feel carefree as summer arrives?

IS IT A SELF DESTRUCTIVE TENDENCY I HARBOR WITHIN MYSELF?  I am really starting to make progress on my weight loss journey!    In my past attempts to lose weight, it seems like right as I start to make real progress, I struggle and eventually fail.  Am I subconsciously afraid of losing weight and getting to my goal?

All I know is that I am struggling, and every day that I let it get away from me it becomes that much more difficult to get back on track.

I do not want to fail, that is for sure - but right now that desire is NOT out weighing my desire to eat, eat, eat!   I guess this is where I have to dig deep and force myself to do this and pray that they motivation and desire returns.

Three days are lost - I can't afford to lose a fourth.   So, I'm going to read stories of others who are doing well and I'm going to lean on their success.  I'm going to remind myself that for four months I have made a dent in this mountain - it is moving - and it would be a shame to stop now.  And, I'm going to pray and ask for help - because let's face it - I have never been doing this on my own.

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Saturday, June 1, 2013

6/01/2013 - Weigh In & The Weekend!

This week has KICKED MY BUTT!  We had a VERY active Memorial Day Weekend (and yes, I still need to finish up my posts about our adventures).  When we got home on Monday, I was hit with a case of the stomach flu and was out of work for two days!  That meant when I was finally able to go back to work I was SWAMPED!  I haven't had time to do much else!

Weigh in this morning went well!  I made it into the 360's!!!! AND, I hit my 60 lbs. gone!!! I was pretty excited!!!  Here is my weigh in pic:

06/01/2013
This week's loss was 2.6 lbs.!  Total weight lost is 62.4 lbs.!

I have to admit, I was excited to take my next weight loss photo...here it is!  No, I don't have any make-up on, my head tilt is ridiculous and I look goofy - BUT I DON'T CARE!  I'm not letting that rain on my parade today!



This weekend, we have A LOT to do.  We are crazy behind on laundry, housework and yard work!  We tried to make some strides during the week, but it was largely fruitless.  We are going to be spending a lot of time doing A LOT of catch up around the house.

And that is all I have planned!!  Boring weekend, yes...but I have to admit, a boring weekend sounds pretty glorious right now!

Hope you all have a great one!!!


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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND - FRIDAY & SATURDAY

I was so excited when work was over on Friday!  Three Day Weekend!!  YEAH!  I was so ready for it!  The previous two weeks were filled with sickness in our household:  my vertigo and my oldest's stomach flu, all ON TOP of the normal daily routine - work, cooking, cleaning, laundry.

SO. READY. FOR. A. BREAK!

We weren't really sure what we were going to do for the weekend, but we had some ideas...I had some ideas.  What we did know was that on Friday night Chris was taking my little one to see World Wrestling Entertainment, live and in person.  In January, my oldest daughter got to go see Justin Bieber in concert.  My little one did not go, and she was a bit sad. We told her she could pick something she wanted to go and see...she immediately said she wanted to go with Daddy to WWE.

I kid you not, it was one of the proudest moments of my husband's life.  He is a HUGE WWE fan!  Having his daughter ask to go to an event - well, it was clearly a highlight of his life!  Not two weeks after the J Biebs concert WWE announced that they were coming to SLC and my husband IMMEDIATELY purchased tickets.

Friday, the day finally arrived!  Chris and the little one were off for a Daddy/Daughter date.  They stopped at Black Bear Diner for dinner and then headed over to the show.  They had such a fun evening!


While Chris and the little one were off at WWE, I took my oldest daughter out for sushi (her choice - my proud moment).  She had just come through a nasty bout of stomach flu and I was REALLY nervous to take her for sushi, but she was insistent - so off we went.  We enjoyed our dinner at 'Blue Fish'.  I had the spicy tuna roll, she had the california roll.  After dinner, we headed home to snuggle and watch movies together.  We watched 'Courageous' (man, what a good movie) and 'Moondance Alexander'.  It was a very relaxed evening - and we both really enjoyed ourselves!


Friday was a fantastic start to our weekend!

When we woke up on Saturday, we still weren't sure what we were going to do.  I REALLY wanted to go to Moab, Utah - I just couldn't get it out of my mind.  I wanted to hike to Delicate Arch - a hike I hadn't done in at least 16 years, because of my weight.   It is classified as a strenuous hike because of the length and elevation gain.  I didn't even know if I could do it, but I REALLY wanted to try - I am nowhere near the weight I was when I hiked it before, but I have come a long way and wanted to give it a try.

Even though I really wanted to go, I was still hesitant because Moab is PACKED on Memorial Day weekend.  PACKED.  I really didn't think there was ANY WAY we could find a camping site, and even if we did, did we really want to fight the crowds??   We waffled back and forth, back and forth about it.  Finally Chris stepped in and made the decision.

Moab it would be - come hell or high water.

We headed out at about 11:00 AM.  It was late in the day and that meant our chances of getting any BLM camp sites were pretty much gone...but we were determined to try.  We had a disaster recovery plan in case it didn't work out - we would head over to Grand Junction and visit Chris' parents.  My kids were pretty much rooting for camp site failure once they knew what our alternate plan was - they are both grandma and grandpa's girls!!

On our way down we made a stop in Price, UT to pick up some supplies - that was pretty much a tragedy, but I won't go into that.  Long story short, we didn't get out of Price for 3 hours, putting us WAY behind schedule, and that meant we wouldn't get to Moab until almost 6:00.

UGLY.  Chances of a camp site fading away quickly.

When we finally got to Moab and started looking for a site, our fears were confirmed - absolutely no camp sites to be found AND the closest hotel with any vacancy was 55 miles away in Monticello.  We were feeling a bit defeated, but, we weren't ready to give up.  We decided to check RV campgrounds - not our ideal camping experience, but seriously, we were there to enjoy Moab - the camping was secondary to this trip.  The first RV park was a bust, but the second one had opened up a section of the park for overflow tent camping and they still had some availability.  We IMMEDIATELY took it!

YES!!  We were in!

We set up camp (did I mention this was our first camping trip as a married couple...oh yeah, first camping trip married!!!)...


...not too shabby for our first time out!!

After we had everything set up, we decided to take the chicken way out for dinner.  It was getting late and we had no desire to try and cook, so we headed into Moab to get some dinner.

We ended up eating at a place called Pasta Jay's.  We were all really hungry - it had been SEVERAL hours since we ate - so, anything was going to taste good.  I didn't have high hopes for a pasta joint - I'm not always a pasta fan, but they had pizza and both my kids wanted it.  I was at the point where ANY FOOD would do, so Pasta Jay's it was.  When my meal came I had to admit it looked good.  I was FLOORED when the marinara sauce at this place ended up being THE BEST I had ever eaten!  It was SO DANG GOOD.  Even my husband, who typically hates marinara, loved it.  We ended up buying a jar of it to take home with us!

If you are ever in Moab, UT - try Pasta Jay's.  You will not be disappointed!

After dinner we headed back to camp to get a good night's sleep. We had a big day in store for us on Sunday.  We were getting up early to make our attempt at the Delicate Arch hike!

OH BOY...I was terrified we wouldn't make it up - terrified my body wouldn't tolerate the hike - but I was determined to try.  STAY TUNED!
 

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Saturday, May 25, 2013

05/25/13 - Weigh In & The Weekend

VERY quick post today...

Weigh in was surprisingly good!


2.2 lbs. lost this week! Total weight loss at 59.8 lbs.

I had my big screw up on Tuesday, but I really did lock it down afterward and get myself back on track.  I wasn't expecting much in the way of loss this week - I was resigned that my win this week would have to be overcoming the screw up - so, I was very pleased when I saw this number pop up.

GETTING VERY CLOSE TO THE 360's!!  Next week, I'm hoping!!

Weekend plans are WAY up in the air! We have come up with 90 different ideas!  Who knows what we will end up doing!

What I do know, is that we are planning to have a FANTASTIC Memorial Day Weekend!  Hope you do too!

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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

THE SCREW UP

I think one of the hardest posts to write is a post where you admit that you screwed up.  That despite your best intentions to NEVER screw up and have a flawless journey to goal weight, you screwed up - you did something to put the journey in danger.  I hate when I have to write a post like that.  But, today I do.  I have to write it, because it's the truth, plain and simple.  And I want this blog to be the truth about this monumental transformation I am undertaking in my life.

Last night, I screwed up.

Chris had gotten tickets to go to the  movies last night - originally we were going to see a preview of 'The Internship', but I wasn't feeling really high on seeing that movie, so instead we went to see 'Star Trek: Into the Darkness'.  Well, Star Trek was showing in the VIP lounge - which is a fancy, cushy movie theater replete with servers, a special menu, private bathrooms, couches, recliners, love seats...you get the picture.

I was having a really good food day and was right on track - so, I wasn't too worried about going out.

I guess I should have been.

When we got to the movie theater, we ordered popcorn and drinks.  The drinks, no problem - Powerade Zero - I don't mess around with carbonated, sugared drinks any more.  They are a trigger item for me, and I know that I just can't have them and stay on track.  Apparently I also need to add movie theater popcorn to the list of items that cause me to downfall.

We arrived at the movie theater a little early, but we asked to have our popcorn brought to us when the movie started to avoid issues with pre-movie snacking (yes, this movie theater had servers that brought your food and drinks to your seat - loved that!).  Chris and I chatted and got comfortable - we were enjoying the atmosphere, and we were both excited for the movie.  We were both feeling a little hungry and talked about ordering dinner to eat during the movie, but I wasn't impressed with the menu and so we decided against it.

I should have ordered dinner.

I hadn't eaten anything since lunch - hadn't had a mid afternoon snack - and the movie was starting right about the time I am usually getting dinner ready.   By the time they brought the popcorn to us, I was feeling ravenous - and that popcorn tasted so good - I was losing control.  Before I knew it we had finished the bucket, ordered a refill and finished that one too.

UGH.

We didn't even make a good choice and order the popcorn with no butter.  We got "light butter" - whatever that means. Butter is butter and we shouldn't have added it period, but we did.  Yep, we weren't kidding around with the going off track thing.

I don't know if you have ever 'calorie priced' movie theater popcorn, but it isn't pretty.  Chris and I basically each consumed a large bucket of buttered popcorn.

1600 calories.

Oh my hell.  Not worth it.  Not even a little.

After the movie, despite feeling bloated and gross from the popcorn, Chris and I decided to go to dinner.  WHAT???  We decided to go to dinner even though both of us were stuffed from popcorn?  This, right here, is fat behavior talking - "Well, we ate popcorn - but that is really just a snack - forget the number of calories we just ate - we still need to eat dinner, right?  I mean, we need real food!!".  That is absolutely a behavior that I used to display, and often, and it certainly helped land me at 430 lbs.!

Have mercy.

So, regardless of the fact that we were stuffed and had no business eating anything else, we went out to dinner.  We ate at a Mexican food restaurant that wasn't very good and certainly wasn't worth the amount of calories we consumed there.  We ate the chips...we ate the food...we ate everything that came near our mouths! When we left, I left feeling so full it was disgusting - I felt physcially ill.

Eating until sick.  Another ugly fat behavior that was a common occurrence for me before January 2013.

By the time we got home I was so full and so sick, that I had to immediately lay down.  I was feeling so bad, and I regretted it all.  I had made bad choices.  I had allowed behaviors that were counter productive to my goal to rear their ugly heads - and I had given in to them.  I was so disappointed in myself.

After a little while I fell asleep.  I would like to tell you that the evening ended there and I was able to put it behind me and move on - but that just isn't true.  At 3:30 AM I woke up.  I was incredibly sick to my stomach and I knew that I was going to throw up.  I jumped out of bed and ran to the bathroom - and everything came up.  I had eaten so much crap that my body literally couldn't handle it and eventually just rejected it.

HORRIFIED barely covers how I feel when typing that last paragraph.

I guess this is the battle with addiction, right here.   You're on track, you're doing great - and then BAM, you give in and let the addiction claim power over you again.  Then comes the realization, again, that this is a lifelong battle and it is going to require daily vigilance - and honestly, that feels a little depressing.  You also realize that letting your guard down, justifying the bad behavior - even for just an hour or two is not just detrimental, it is down right destructive!

The circle of addiction is so hard to break because 1) you're addicted to something - in my case food  2) when you fail fighting your addiction it makes you feel terrible about yourself, and 3) when you feel terrible about yourself, you are inclined to run toward the addiction that for some reason makes you feel better - for just a moment - but when that moment is over, you are right back to feeling like a failure and then the cycle repeats.

I am worried.  These last few weeks I feel like I have allowed certain behaviors - specifically eating out WAY too much - to sneak back in to my daily routine.  Sure, I track what I eat in my food journal, but bottom line, eating out is a trigger for me and not amount of journaling or tracking is going to change that.  Also, as that behavior sneaks back in I swear my mind starts to process justifications for other behaviors that "aren't so bad".

And this is my pattern - this is when I fall off the wagon - this is when it all falls apart.

I don't want that to happen.  I feel TERRIFIED that it might, because I DO NOT want it to happen.  And maybe feeling scared and terrified that it might be starting to happen is the wake up call I need to be more vigilant.

When I finally got out of bed this morning and started getting ready for work, I committed that today was a new day.  I also forced myself to face the scale - to get immediate feedback about how this slip up was affecting my progress.

It wasn't pretty.

Nonetheless,  I couldn't go back and fix what happened yesterday, no matter how much I wanted to. I played with the idea of fasting today - I mean, if I didn't eat anything today then that would make up for the calories I ate yesterday - RIGHT (said with a very sarcastic tone).  I also played with the idea of seriously restricting my calories for the next few days - again, that was definitely going to take away the bad choices from yesterday - RIGHT (again, apply very sarcastic tone)!

Ultimately, I decided that neither of those things would truly help me get back on track.  Following the my plan, sticking to the eating schedule, tracking every bite, and recommitting myself to the journey - that would get me back on track.  And that is what I am doing today.

I am also trying to analyze just what is going on with me.  Trying to figure out why I am allowing some bad behaviors to creep back in.  I know conventional wisdom says that during weight loss there will be slip ups,  but I'll be honest, I disagree with conventional wisdom. I don't think it is OK - EVER.  We would NEVER say the same thing to a drug addict or an alcoholic, so why do we when food is the addiction??  For me, this is a fight against addiction and slipping up is not OK!  And figuring out what caused the slip up is IMPORTANT.  It's going to take some serious introspection, but I need to figure out why this happens and then get a strategy in place to deal with it.

Anyway, that is my story.  I screwed up - I've been screwing up.  Again at the crossroads - give in, or fight it and move forward.

I'm fighting and moving forward.  Going back just isn't an option.  Letting a screw up take four months of hard work down - well, not going to happen.

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Tuesday, May 21, 2013

BLACK BEAR DINER, YARD WORK & TRAMPOLINES...Oh My!

On Sunday we went out for a Mother's Day Reboot brunch.  We went to Black Bear Diner with my Mom and my sister and her family.  Black Bear Diner is SO GOOD, but SO FATTENING.  I had pretty much resigned myself that I was going to get one meal on Sunday because we were going to Black Bear.  I ended up getting the Chicken Fried Steak, which comes with their strip cut hash browns, eggs, and a sweet cream pancake.  It was so good - but when I tracked the calories, I almost swallowed my tongue!  It was a whopping 1860 calories for the meal!

OUCH!  I was definitely done eating for the day - I had used up all of my calories in one sitting!

I had planned a pretty relaxing day - maybe a movie, a nap - just pure relaxation.  On the way home from brunch Chris and I stopped at Lowe's because we needed to buy a new lawnmower and after looking and looking we felt Lowe's was going to be the best place to find what we were looking for.

That stopped changed my Sunday from one of relaxation and leisure, to a hardcore yard work day that has left me so sore that I can barely walk!

We ended up buying a new lawnmower, and of course when we got home Chris just had to assemble and then test his new gadget.  Since he was going to be outside mowing, and because the weather was damp and cool, I thought it would be a good time to get some weeding done.  That was at about 1:00.  At 6:30 that night we called it a day.

I don't know if you can tell from my posts, but once I get something in my head I am pretty stubborn and driven about it.  Weeding on Sunday was no different.  I kept telling myself, "OK, you are just going to finish this section and then call it good for today" - and once the section was done I would say, "OK, you still have some energy, let's do one more section".  Well, before I knew it I had been weeding for the better part of the afternoon and had completely transformed our front planters, as well as the gravel and roadway next to our house.

I was a woman obsessed!

After I had been weeding for about 3 hours, I went around back to check on Chris (who was still playing with the lawnmower).  I was really worn out and so I decided to climb up on the trampoline and lay on it and relax for a little while.

A couple of weeks ago I had tentatively ventured onto the trampoline - it has been calling to me ever since.  Every time I walk by it I think about getting up on there - so, on Sunday, tired and worn out I decided to get up there again.  The black jumping mat attracts the sun and keeps it REALLY warm - and I was feeling cold from the wind and the overcast, damp conditions.

After laying there for a about 10 minutes, I decided I was going to give jumping a try.  I had bounced around on the tramp the last time I had gotten on, but I hadn't actually jumped - I thought, WHAT THE HELL, I am going to give it a try.

I stood up and gave a mini jump, then immediately asked Chris to assess how close to the ground I was coming when i jumped - I was TERRIFIED of hitting the ground.  he told me I had at least 2 feet of clearance between me and the ground.  I thought, OK...I am really going to give this a try.  So I started to jump, and jump, and jump...it was SO FUN!  I forgot how much I loved jumping on the trampoline!

When I was a kid I was a trampoline maniac.  I mastered every twist, flip, turn out there...and I loved to do it.  But, at some point I stopped.  And then I gained weight, and then I convinced myself I couldn't get on a trampoline any more - you know, weight limits and all (and, please know, I am not advising any one to violate a weight limit on a tramp - I just decided to finally take the risk), and I just stopped.

It has been at least 17 years since I jumped like that on a trampoline.  17 years!!!

I was jumping, and soaring - and feeling pretty cocky about it - and out of nowhere, I threw a toe touch out there!!!  ME, 372.4 lbs., jumping and throwing a toe touch!  I LOVED IT!  I felt so free, and I was so thrilled that my body was cooperating!  I was so excited that I could actually still manage a toe touch, that I did another, and another!!

By this time my kids had wandered out and were cheering me on, my husband had wandered over to warn me to be careful!  I kept jumping and shouting with joy!  Finally, my calves started to burn so I thought, OK...that's the warning - time to give it a rest.  I sat down and just basked in the glow of my trampoline fun.

After another 5 minutes I went back to my yard work - energized from my round of fun on the trampoline.

I worked for another hour or so - until my body really couldn't do anything more.  I went in the house and started to clean up.  When I looked in the mirror I was SHOCKED at how hammered I looked.  Some women look so clean and nice after a round of gardening - I am not one of those women.  I thought it was so funny how crazy I looked that I decided to document it...and I'm actually going to share it here!!


Note the dirt on my face, the crazy hair, the weeds stuck in the hair, the filthy feet and hands

Right after I snapped these pics I wandered in the house and went directly to the bathroom where I took a very thorough shower - obviously.

After getting out of the shower and relaxing for a minute, I pulled up Sparkpeople and logged my "workout".  I plugged in 3 hours of gardening - and it said I had burned 1300 calories!!!!  I also plugged in 10 minutes of jumping on the trampoling - 67 calories!!!

1367 CALORIES!  After an 1860 calorie brunch - I needed a burn like this!  I was so thrilled!  I mean, what a workout!  My body was feeling it...and it felt good! I had really pushed my body - yard work, trampoline - and it made me feel reinvigorated and excited for the future as my body shrinks and becomes more and more capable physically.

Later that night Chris and I were talking about all the things that over the years we have just stopped doing - and we wondered why!  Jumping on the trampoline.  Biking.  Roller Skating.  Things we enjoyed and found so much pleasure doing - and we just stopped.   WHY???  Why do we stop doing things that we loved as a kid?  We didn't really have an answer, but we committed to throw caution to the wind and try those things again - and soon!  I can't wait!

The relaxing and restful Sunday I had planned turned out to be anything but...it was still a great day and I went to bed feeling so good about everything!!  And even though today every step I take is punctuated by intense muscle pain - I can't wait to do it again!

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Saturday, May 18, 2013

05/18/13 - Weigh In & The Weekend

Today has been a pretty crazy, hectic day.  Regardless of the mania, I made sure to make time for my weigh in - even though I was feeling a little hesitant about it because of being very sedentary this last week due to my bout with vertigo (which thankfully came to an end yesterday!!  RELIEF!).

My girls are both playing volleyball right now.  Today was the end of the season tournament.  My oldest had a game at 8:30 AM, my youngest at 12:30.  We got up this morning and it was rush, rush, rush to get ready and get over to the game.

I didn't have time to do my weigh in before we left, which was really a bummer because there was no way I was going to consume food or water prior to my weigh in - and I was thirsty and hungry!  It also meant that secretly I was hoping that my daughter's team wouldn't win because if they did, well, we would be there for two games!  I felt REALLY bad about those thoughts when my daughter's team lost in a nail biter and all the girls were crying afterward, including my own daughter.

UGH!  BAD MOM!!

After the game we headed home for weigh in.  I was feeling really neutral about it.  I certainly didn't want to gain any weight, but I didn't feel like I was going to lose it if I didn't lose much.  This week was BRUTAL - I know I sound like a broken record about this vertigo thing, but honestly, it was really terrible - and I was just happy to feel normal again!  If nothing else, that was my win this week.

So, with that attitude, I got ready and stepped on the scale...

05/13/11 Weigh In
372.4!  It was only a 1 lbs. loss, but I still felt pretty good about it!  That brings my total weight loss to  57.6 lbs.

NOT TOO SHABBY!!

I have a goal to get below 350 lbs. by my birthday, which is 8.5 weeks away.  I still think its doable, but I am going to have to buckle down and make sure I am not allowing any bad habits to sneak in or I won't make it.

I also need to get back to my exercise routine.  I feel pretty committed to exercise 5 days a week - and I know that even though the first week back on track with exercise may not be pretty on the scales, eventually it will catch up and make an impact.

**Keeping My Fingers Crossed for Success**

After weigh in Chris and I went to run some errands.  We were planning to get our grocery shopping done, but somehow we ended up at Lane Bryant shopping for bras.  My husband is a saint.  He knew it had to be done - after this much weight loss, my bras were pretty much useless and I had resorted to wearing two, rather than buy new ones - so he was supportive when I asked to drop by Lanie's.    After an HOUR of measuring and testing bra after bra, I walked out with 2 new full coverage bras.  They weren't my first choice, but the demi, which was my first choice, was just a little too small and they didn't have it in a larger size.

Oh well, something to look forward to purchasing with more weight loss!

Because I spent so much time in Lane Bryant we ended up with no time to do our grocery shopping because we had to get back for my youngest daughter's volleyball game.  We rushed home, I threw on my new bra, and we headed out.  They lost their game too...but there weren't any tears.  They are younger and aren't quite as competitive yet.  I'm sure next year it will be a different story!

THE WEEKEND

We will be playing a LOT of catch up this weekend with house work and yard work.  BLAH!  Not something I am looking forward to doing, but it must be done.

Some fun things we will make sure to fit in to give us a break from the cleaning and weeding:
  • Watching LES MISERABLE.  We still haven't seen it and Chris picked it up at the Redbox.  I am really looking forward to watching it and hope it lives up to all the hype!!
  • Watching the season finale of 'Scandal'.  I have been DYING to watch it, but I wanted to do it while walking on the treadmill.  Great motivation for me to get my exercise on!
I hope you have a great weekend!  














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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

SLOW PROGRESS IS BETTER THAN NO PROGRESS!

This week has been pretty disorganized so far...and I don't like it.  I do not like it one little bit.

I was pretty much bed ridden over the weekend due to this little episode of vertigo, and right now going to work and making it through the day is taking just about all the energy I can muster - so when I get home, I am pretty much down and out - just tired of the constant movement in my head and ready for a break.  Well, as a result, none of the chores in the house are done (yes, my family is perfectly fine...but without Mom to crack the whip, well, not much gets done - I know you women out there understand what I'm saying here), no menu planning happened, none of the grocery shopping was done...it is basically chaos around the Harris household.

CHAOS!

The problem with the chaos and disorganization is that it makes it difficult for me to stay focused.  I find myself relying on eating out for lunch, rather than taking my own calorie friendly lunch. We talk about eating out for dinner every single night because coming up with a plan last minute just boggles our minds! We have resisted the temptation to eat out at dinner, but without a plan and groceries to support it, well, it's just a matter of time.

BAD HABITS.  VERY BAD HABITS.  THEY DIE REALLY HARD!

These bad habits must be squashed, and quickly, because if we keep cultivating them and allowing them to sneak back into our lives, well at a minimum they will make it incredibly difficult to stay on track - and at worst they will derail the journey.

This journey is hard enough as it is.  I don't need to do anything to increase the difficulty!!!  I have found time and time again that when I plan and prepare, I am successful - and not just on the scale.  I feel calm and focused, I feel capable of accomplishing what is required, I feel somewhat in control.  When I fail to plan, however, I feel the control slipping away, and the calm I previously felt is no where to be found.

ORGANIZATION IS A KEY FOR ME!

So, today I will be spending time getting back to 'organized'.  Bidding farewell to the chaos. I will be getting a menu plan together, getting groceries to support said plan, getting my house back in shape, and getting my focus back!  I need it.  I need to feel peaceful and calm.  I need to regain control over those things that I can actually control.  I need my organization back!

Do any of you out there find that organization is a key to staying on your journey?

I did have another little something that I wanted to share today!  A NON SCALE VICTORY!!!  One that  really lifted my spirits!

When I arrived at work this morning I was greeted by a colleague from our Massachusetts facility who hasn't been in Salt Lake City for months - definitely before I started back on my weight loss and fitness journey.  So, the Connie  he last saw was 56.6 lbs. heavier (at least) than the Connie he encountered today!

This colleague was astounded by my weight loss - he was gushing over it.  He kept saying "You look so fantastic! You have obviously lost weight! How much have you lost??"   I was THRILLED!  Thrilled to have someone notice the change, thrilled that for him the change was DRAMATIC, and thrilled to be able to share my weight loss story so far!  It felt great!

You know, when people see you every day, the change is gradual for them - harder to detect.  Sometimes there aren't the "you look greats" and "my goodness, what are you doing to lose weights".  The little comments that can brighten the journey.  It isn't their fault - I mean, sometimes it is hard for even those on the journey to see the progress!!  But, apparently, for those who haven't seen you in a while - well, the changes are obvious!  And they let you know about it!  And those moments are to be CHERISHED, and filed away so that when the going gets tough, we can pull them out and relish them for a moment!!!

It was a great start to my day!  And, honestly, a great boost for the journey.

These darn weight loss journeys are long and arduous - especially if you are looking at 18 months to 2 years or longer to reach goal.  Of course, there are times when it doesn't necessarily feel worth it...but, today was a reminder to me that YES, IT IS!!! My body is changing!  Even if it is hard for me to see!  I am making progress! And even if the pace is slower than my impatient self would like, it is so much better to make slow progress than to make no progress at all!!!

I need to remember that every. single. day:  It is better to make slow progress than no progress at all!!!

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Monday, May 13, 2013

A CHIROPRACTOR & A MARATHON

Today, out of sheer desperation, I went to the chiropractor to see if I could get some relief for this vertigo.  The chiropractor scares me to death - allowing them to crack and twist my neck and back causes me quite a bit of anxiety.

But I was desperate - willing to try anything - so I went.

He started with my mid back.  He said that sometimes by getting spinal alignment back in place it allows drainage from the inner ear.  I wasn't sure I bought into that, but again, I was desperate.  The mid back adjustment hurt so damn bad.  There was swearing, on my part.  Embarrassing, yes, but I am basically paying this guy to torture me, so I thought a little swearing was in order.  I doubt I am the first to swear on his torture table.

The rest of the adjustments went pretty well - upper back, neck, lower back...crack, crack, crack.  After the adjustments were over he put me on the electric massage table and put the stims on the muscles in my neck.  That part felt fantastic, and I just relaxed and enjoyed it.  

I don't know if it is just in my head, but I am definitely feeling better.  Still a little dizzy and woozy when I first sit up or stand, but there is marked difference from when I woke up this morning - and I am completely relieved.  I will be going back, and soon.

Mother's Day was pretty uneventful around here. Chris made a nice breakfast - mountain man hash, toasted english muffins, and extra pulpy orange juice.  It was delicious.  After breakfast I went outside and sat on the patio while Chris and the girls mowed the lawn.  Being up and about was really wearing on me, so after about 45 minutes outside I wandered back into my bedroom and laid back down.  Sleep has really been my only relief from the spinning and dizziness, so I have been taking plenty of naps.  When I woke up Chris and I watched a movie, 'Jack Reacher', which I thought was pretty good.

I was a pretty sad that the day hadn't turned out how I had wanted.  I was really looking forward to getting out, enjoying the weather, and conquering the Y again.  Best Laid Plans, right??  Chris told me that we are going to have a "redo" of Mother's Day, and make sure we enjoy all the activities we had originally planned.  He's a good husband.

My eating over the weekend was really off schedule because I was napping so much, but overall I stayed on track.  I am continuing to eat around 1800 -1900 calories, and apparently my body likes it and is responding well.  I really think that 1800 calories is my "sweet spot" right now.   I am going to stay here until I drop below 300 lbs.  When I was on Jenny Craig breaking the 300 lbs. mark was the point where they lowered my calorie intake from 2000 calories a day to 1700.  I never got there, but I have always remembered that threshold.

I am very much looking forward to being able to get back to exercising - I am thinking that by Wednesday I will be able to get back on the treadmill.  There won't be any 5K's immediately - I think I seriously burned myself out on them - but I will be walking at least 45 minutes each day.

Today I decided that, without doubt, running a marathon is one of my ultimate goals - its on my bucket list if you will.  It might take me 10 years to get ready to do that - I hope not, but it might.  I don't really care when I do, but, mark my words, I will do it.


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Saturday, May 11, 2013

05/11/13 - WEIGH IN & THE WEEKEND

THE WEIGH IN

I have been feeling under the weather most of this week...but yesterday took it to a whole new level.  I am suffering 'vertigo' due to an inner ear infection.  It is miserable.  Everything is spinning and moving ALL the time, except when I'm asleep.  I'm really tired of it and need it to go away stat!

Regardless of my inability to stand and walk without tipping about like a drunk woman, I weighed in.  Here are my results:


Of course, I'm happy to see a loss!  I would be lying if I said anything different...but I'll be honest, I would prefer for this to even out.  Rather than losing 6 lbs. one week, and none or even a gain the next...I would prefer a steady 2 - 3 lbs. each week!  Slow and steady wins the race!!!  RIGHT!!  And I'm a playing to win this race!!!

Trying to get this picture this morning was a bit of a comedy of errors.  My balance is so off, and I am constantly dizzy, so when I picked up our camera to get my weigh in picture - I promptly dropped it...and broke it.  I am so bummed out!  We just bought it in January, and here it is May and it is broken beyond repair.  Chris is going to see if it is still covered and we can return it for a new one...but, I'm not holding my breath.

THE WEEKEND

We had some big plans this weekend, as the weather is absolutely gorgeous around these parts.  Last year for Mother's Day I wanted nothing more than to conquer 'The Hike to the Y' - I did it, although it was painful...you can read about that adventure here.

This year I wanted to repeat my victory on Y Mount - so we had planned to do the hike this weekend.  Clearly in my dizzy, tipsy state I shouldn't be allowed to get near any steep incline on the side of a mountain!  I'm still holding out hope that this vertigo crap will clear up...but, if it doesn't, my hike will have to wait until next weekend.

Last weekend we had planned a hike to Silver Lake with a good friend and his kids, that got scuttled due to the weather.  We were hoping to do that today - but again...unable to walk a straight line is putting a hamper on these plans!!!

As it stands, this weekend is starting to look like a lot of time in bed or on the couch...and a lot of Redbox movies to keep me entertained!!  In fact, as I write this post I am watching Twilight and loving every minute of it.  It is playing my favorite scene of the whole movie right now - The baseball game - LOVE IT!  No, I won't be ashamed!  I adore Twilight!  And, yes, I'm Team Edward all the way!

Have a great weekend!!!



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Wednesday, May 8, 2013

MY LITTLE PICK ME UPS!

During my tantrum on Saturday, we went to Nordstrom Rack to return some kids shoes.  It didn't help my mood.  It isn't really a good idea when you are feeling down about your weight loss journey to go into a store with a lot of awesome clothes that WON'T fit your body!  It just fueled the pity party I was throwing for myself.

I'm a big lady, we all get that...but when I say that, I mean, I am big in EVERY way imaginable.  I am tall 5'11" to be exact (some measurements, which I reject, put me at 5'11 1/2")...which isn't really a problem, but I just want to paint the picture here... AND I have ENORMOUS feet.

I mean, come on God, couldn't you have balanced this situation out just a little by giving me feet that were a normal size so I could buy cute, dainty shoes????

When I say I have enormous feet, I am not kidding!  I wear either a 12 or a 13 in women's, depending on the brand, shoe, etc.  It is REALLY hard to find fashionable, nice looking shoes in those sizes...and it is so frustrating!  Not only are my feet big, but I have these freaky long toes...my "index" toe is so long that I typically have to buy shoes to accommodate it!

I usually wear flip flops...its just easier that way.

THE HUMANITY!

Anyway, I digress.  There we are, in Nordstrom Rack, and I decide to wander over to the shoe section.  They do tend to carry larger sizes of women's shoes and wanted to check out what was in stock.   Overall it was pretty disappointing...but then I saw these babies:



...And I fell in love - like teenage, smitten love.

SO out of character for me!  I mean, I am pretty vanilla when it comes to buying shoes:  Brown or black; No prints; flats (I don't typically rock a heel because I'm already tall).

BORING.

Well, Saturday in the midst of my melt down, I wanted to do something surprising, something CRAZY...and 4 INCH HEELS FIT THE BILL!  I picked them up and checked the price...$11.59!!! OK, How could I go wrong?? I mean, even if I never wore them, it was still worth $11.59 to feel like I was living la vida loca!!

I tried them on and teetered around the store to see if I could even tolerate a heel like this.  I have NEVER worn high heels like this.  I mean NEVER...I was surprised I could even take a step in them without collapsing!  My husband came over...he is 6'7"...and even though he didn't like me being so close to his height (PUH LEEZ) he told me to go for it.  So I did!

Today I wore them to work...and I loved every minute of it.  They made me feel VERY sassy, and I just LOVED standing next to the men in the office.  They became very nervous and fidgety...intimidated by my physical dominance...LOVED IT!

Even though it was totally out of character for me, I am so glad I bought them!!!  Sometimes it is nice to step outside the box and be just a little crazy!

And, yes, I will DEFINITELY be wearing these babies again soon!

My little pick me ups!!

IN OTHER NEWS...

My food intake this week is going well.  I did decide to make some minor adjustments.  I decided to up my calorie target to 1800, which is what I was targeting until a few weeks ago.  Over the course of the last 4 - 6 weeks I have drifted toward eating 1600 calories a day.  In the back of my mind, I thought I was ready to step down, but you know what, my results just haven't been as strong.

At my size, the recommended calorie intake is actually between 2000 - 2300 calories per day.  I tried that initially, but I just didn't find it to be effective...and I found myself looking for ways to eat more calories, even when I was full.  I just didn't think that was productive in changing habits, so I lowered my goal to a range of 1700 - 2000 calories, and I consistently came in at 1800 each day - it seemed natural.  I was really feeling satisfied and energetic at that target, and I was losing consistently.   I know there are a lot of factors that go into weight loss, and I have to tell you, I'm a believer that eating too few calories can be detrimental.  Anyway, I decided to experiment and see if it makes a difference.

I have been feeling under the weather this week so I didn't do much in the way of exercise on Monday and Tuesday...and no, that is not an excuse to get out of exercising.  I really don't want to lose momentum on the exercise front, so I am going to try getting back on the treadmill tonight.  Even if I only make it 15 minutes, I will consider it a win.


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Monday, May 6, 2013

STRATEGIZING

As we all know, my weigh in on Saturday just didn't go the way I had expected it to.  I was disappointed, there was no question.

To say I dealt well with things would be a total lie.  To say I coped would also be a lie.  I didn't.  I basically threw the adult version of a tantrum...I pouted, I cried a little, I decided God hated me, I considered packing up the family and running away for a while...I mean, real rational, mature behaviors.

**INSERT ENORMOUS EYE ROLL HERE**

In the midst of my tantrum my sister came over.   I was sitting in the bedroom, pouting (although I tried to pretend I was doing something different) and she came in, like a whirlwind, and forced me to come over to her house to evaluate her current home improvement project.  While there, she gave me the 'Come to Jesus' talk that I was no doubt in need of.  She told me this:

"If you are going to have a melt down every single time the weigh in doesn't go in your favor on this journey, let me tell you right now, QUIT.  Because it's going to happen again - many times - and you are just going to make yourself, and everyone around you, miserable if you keep this up."

I wanted to be offended and outraged by her comments, but I knew that she was right.  Thank goodness I have a family who doesn't hold back and just says it like it is!

Now, I may have known that sister was right, but I still wasn't ready to be mature about it.  So I tucked her little talk into my mental back pocket and went on about my pouting and whining and immaturity.

**INSERT ANOTHER BIG EYE ROLL HERE**

After I left her house I went home and gathered up my family and we headed out for breakfast.  I was feeling defiant, and so breakfast turned into a binge eating session, and then at the movies - popcorn binge - and then a dinner  binge.

REALLY CONNIE!  This is how you are going to deal with this??? By binge eating.

I kept trying to justify to myself that I just needed a day off - I needed a break.

Uh huh.

 Just like an alcoholic gets a free day and gets to drink everything he or she wants for one day...and somehow they still manage to overcome their addiction - NO, YOU NEVER HEAR ABOUT THAT, BECAUSE IT'S BS.  IT DOESN'T HAPPEN.

If you are an addict you DO NOT, under any circumstance, turn to the substance you are addicted to for comfort!  YOU DON'T EVER DO IT!

MY NAME IS CONNIE HARRIS.  I AM A FOOD ADDICT.  AND ON SATURDAY I THOUGHT I COULD TURN TO FOOD FOR COMFORT AND IT WOULD BE NO BIG DEAL!!

MY NAME IS CONNIE HARRIS AND I LIE TO MYSELF!!

By the end of the day on Saturday I had consumed a whopping 3900 calories. I felt horrific spiritually, mentally and physically.  I thought "Is this really how you want to live your life?"  My answer was NO!! I  NEVER want to go back to the place where a 3900 calorie binge day is the norm.  Where feeling out of control, stuffed, and bloated is a common occurrence.

I NEVER WANT TO GO BACK TO THAT PLACE.  I don't care if I never lose another pound.  I don't want to live like that.

So I decided to food journal - to hold myself accountable.  So, there in the ashes of my day of debauchery, I tracked all of the food I had eaten.  I was disgusted as I saw my calorie count climb higher and higher, and again, I made a decision that I was not going to go back to that way of living.

Then, from out of my mental back pocket I pulled my sister's 'Come to Jesus' speech from earlier - and I accepted it.  I knew that I had to be stronger than this.  I had to be better at weathering the storm.  I couldn't fall apart every time the scale didn't say what I wanted it to...because, seriously, how many times can an addict handle the melt down before they are right back in the grip of their addiction???  How many more times can I handle it before I am right back where I was 4 months ago???

NOT VERY MANY!!

In those moments I  also realized this - THIS is the reason people fail.  THIS is what makes weight loss hard as hell.  The unexplained plateaus, the inability to really predict what is going to happen on the scale.  There is no middle ground with the scale - you are either thrilled or you are plunged into despair.  And so, to make it, you have to force yourself to find your own middle ground - and that is ridiculously hard to do!!

Anyway, Sunday morning I got up an recommitted myself, not to my journey, but to my new lifestyle.  I wasn't going off the rails, I wasn't going back to the lifestyle I left behind on January 27, 2013.  I was moving forward, and I would find other reasons to keep doing it if the damn scale wouldn't give me one.  I got right back on track....and I logged 1737 calories for the day.  And I burned a boat load of calories working off my frustrations in my yard (who knew yard work was such a calorie burner???).

I felt better.  I felt focused.  I felt committed to this change.

I honestly don't know what I'm going to do the next time I am disappointed by my weigh in...I won't lie and say I do.  But I do know this...

I AIN'T GOING BACK!!!!

And so I better damn well get a strategy.  And that's where I'm at...

STRATEGIZING.

IN OTHER NEWS...

This weekend we did go see Iron Man 3 - you guys, I have to tell you...I liked it, but I didn't LOVE it.  It was my least favorite of all three movies so far!!

I watched 'The Impossible' with Chris...my hell, talk about a movie that makes you stop and think.  For me, I walked away even more firm in my faith that miracles happen - and they aren't just coincidences.

We are in the midst of spring cleaning our yard.  We are trying to decide if we are going to put landscape rock in all of our flower beds.  I have resisted, because I REALLY love the dark, organic look of mulch or even dark bark...but we live in a really windy area and it just isn't practical.  So, I think I'm going to have to compromise and go for the rock.  UGH.  

I tried to cut my youngest daughter's hair this weekend.  I thought "hey, how hard can this be"...and so I found out.  Chris took one look at my handiwork and told me to get the kids in the car...we were going to Great Clips.  I have a renewed respect for hair stylists!!


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Saturday, May 4, 2013

05/04/13 - WEIGH IN & THE WEEKEND

Last night I finished my last 5K of the week.  It wasn't as easy as the night before...but that is probably because I went at a faster pace.  I finished in my best time of the week...69 minutes.  A pretty nice improvement from my times during the other races, which ranged from 73 - 77 minutes.

I was really glad to be done with the 5K's.  It was a challenging goal for me and I feel really good that I was able to achieve it.  Thanks for hanging in there with me through my ranting and raving about the walks...AND the pouting each night before I had to do it!

I had mentioned that we were going to shake things up with this last 5K.  We were going to walk it outside as a family, but I am suffering from some pretty nasty allergies right now and there was a bit of wind last night...so ultimately I decided to walk it inside and get caught up on the latest episode of Nashville.  I'm not loving that show right now...I think I may have to part ways.

WEIGH IN

This morning was my weigh in.  I was pretty excited because I had worked hard on the exercise side of things this week, AND had a really good week where my eating was concerned.  Imagine my utter disappointment when I stepped on the scale and saw this:



That, my friends, is a gain of .6 lbs. from last week.  I have no words.  I feel pretty devastated about it.

You know, people make weight loss seem like a simple equation...calories in calories out...but there is no way that is true because my calories in vs. out this week would NEVER lead to a gain.

So what the hell???

I'm frustrated, yes, I'm trying to focus on my other accomplishments this week:

  • I worked out for 5 days...something I have NEVER done.
  • I walked 5 5K's this week!!  I mean, that is awesome!
  • I really did make good choices with my food, even trying out a new recipe that I thought was pretty darn good.

Still, the point of all of this is to see the scale go down...and the fact that it didn't...well, it sucks quite frankly.

Am I going to cry?  Probably...I won't even try to lie about it.  It's a blow.  If I can't lose weight after the week I just had...well, it makes my ultimate goal seem pretty far away.

Yep, I am going to call this my worst weigh in ever.  What a crappy way to start May!

THE WEEKEND

Seeing Iron Man 3...and from what I hear, I should expect to love it!!!

Hiking to Silver Lake in Big Cottonwood Canyon with some friends.  I am not sure what the weather is going to be like up there...but I'm hoping its good! 

Housecleaning...boo!  A necessary evil.

Yard work...boo!  Another necessary evil.

Other than that, hopefully some time to decompress and recharge my batteries for the week ahead!

Have a great one yourself!!


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