Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Happy in Seattle...sort of

Maybe "happy" is an exaggeration, but at least I'm not heartsick. Well, not totally anyway.

My heartsick post stemmed from me losing my two best buddies at work, both in the same week. Next week they're both moving to different teams. They'll still be on the same floor, and they'll still be my friends, but it will be different. Right now I know these two guys always have my back. I won't have that anymore.

Life goes on and since there's really nothing I can do about this situation, I have to get over it. I'm trying my best to stay positive, but it hasn't been easy. In my almost 28 years with my company, I've worked in several different areas and different cities. I've always had at least one and often two or three "best" friends at work. You know the kind of people I'm talking about. The kind where you can vent, and that you can trust 100%. The people that make you laugh when you feel like crying because you're so stressed out on your job. The people that are always there for you. Well, that's gone now. Even as I type this I feel the tears starting again (dammit anyway!).

Of course there will be new people, but I have this really strange feeling that it won't be the same. In fact, I'm positive it won't be the same. There are reasons I can't discuss here, but I know the new folks won't be my best friends, and they won't have my back. Oh well, that's life, right? It's painful to accept, but like I said, it's just the way things roll. It can't be "fixed".

Moving on to the issue at hand
My biggest problem right now (outside of me boohooing about my work situation), is my weight. Another dammit anyway topic. I didn't weigh this morning, but yesterday I was 187.8. Ouch! This is totally not where I want to be, and I don't know how to stop this roller coaster I'm on.

I'm not eating junk, I'm just continuing with eating too much of the healthy foods. It's all healthy. Fresh fruits and vegetables, baked or broiled chicken breasts and fish or shrimp, whole grain bread, Fage 0% yogurt, 2% cheese in very limited quantities (28 grams a day). That's pretty much all I eat, but I EAT TOO MUCH.

Every day starts out great. A great workout at the gym (almost every day, at least I'm still doing this right). A great breakfast, a great lunch, an afternoon snack, usually yogurt and fruit. Even dinner is usually healthy and a small portion. But I'm back to eating at night, late night.

I'm pretty sure this recent stint of night eating is because when I try to sleep I think about work. I can feel myself start to get upset and not wanting to think about it, but I can't shut my brain off. I wind up getting out of bed and grazing, and my grazing usually racks up about 500 calories or more. Last night it was three slices of Dave's Killer bread at 110 calories each (I need to stop buying this stuff because it too good), two bananas  and a cup of 1% milk, then later a giant bowl of fresh strawberries (the best strawberries ever). That's probably about 700 calories that was over my normal approximately 1500 calories. And I had the wise idea to skip the gym yesterday morning.

I really don't know how to get a grip on this out of control eating. I'm not eating junk, but I am eating way too much food. It's making me crazy that I feel so lost and out of control.

I guess "happy in Seattle" should probably have been titled "hopeless in Seattle".

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Heartsick in Seattle

Yes, that would be me. I found out today that my other best friend at work is leaving my team. I knew he'd applied for a different job, and although I wished him the best, I secretly hoped he wouldn't go.

This is the second person to leave my team in one week, and they're my two best friends on the team. A year ago my absolute best friend on my team left the company. Now in one week I've lost my other two best friends at work.

These guys are more than just coworkers. They're actually friends. They help me with problems, they were my go-to people when I wanted a second opinion, and I felt like I was the same for them. They made me laugh even during the most difficult situations. I sort of feel like I'm getting divorced or something.

I feel really, really sad. Heartsick as Hopeful and Free would say. I know life goes on, but it's not going to be the same. I like the other people on my team. They're all nice people, but I just don't have the same type of relationship with them that I had with these guys.

For even more misery, I've spent the last two days sitting in on peer interviews. There's not much I hate about my job, except this one thing...interviews. I detest sitting in on interviews.

I skipped the gym this morning. I've gone the past four days, but this morning I just couldn't do it. I walked at lunch, a very brisk walk (which resulted in a blister because of rock in my shoe that I couldn't find...I think it was in my sock). By the time I was back at the office I was a sweaty mess.

When I got home my husband had picked up fried chicken from the deli (why?!). I ate two pieces, and no vegetables. Now I feel sort of nauseous, and very, very sad.

Not my best day.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Get over it! (cheesecake) / 185.4

Yes, I had a piece of that Costco cheesecake last night. It disappeared from the refrigerator, and I thought my husband had put it in the garbage (he purchased it while I was in Fairbanks). Actually, he froze it. I found it last night and not accidentally, but on purpose. I went searching for it.

After a great day of eating and no exercise (never made it to the gym last night), I had a 12-Point piece of cheesecake, (the nutritional information is on I only had one slice (1/16th of the cake) because that's all that I could find.

The verdict: Get over it Diana! It didn't lead to some big, crazy all-night eating binge. I ate some extra salmon later in the evening (leftover from dinner), five tiny Clementines, and a bag of SmartPop popcorn. None of this was planned. I put everything into eTools, and yes, I had a 53-Point day yesterday (I'm allowed 29).

It's not the end of the world. I'm not mad at myself for not being perfect. It was just a piece of cheesecake. I'm pretty sure I would have eaten more if there was more available, but it wasn't and I didn't.

I still feel in control in spite of the 53 Points. Okay, maybe I was a little bit out of control, but it's not a big deal. I'm okay with it. I'm not going to Costco today and buying a cheesecake, hiding it, and eating the whole thing within a day or two. I've done that before. Fortunately, it's been a few years (about three plus years).

Ironically I had one of my best ever workouts at the gym this morning. I seemed to have extra power and stamina. I did the elliptical again for thirty minutes (still hate it and the StairMasters are still broken), and a full hour of lower body/abs exercises. I'm not sure if it was the salmon or the cheesecake that gave me the extra energy (maybe both?).

Yes, we have sunshine today in the Pacific Northwest. It was 38 degrees at 5:30am when I went to the gym, so it's a bit chilly, but it's gorgeous. If I could take today off from work I'd do it in a heartbeat (a bike ride would be really fun). Unfortunately I have two meetings that I can't miss today. At least I can walk at lunch, so that will be some extra calorie burning (hopefully burn off some cheesecake).

Torchlight parade
I'm going to walk in the Torchlight parade this year in Seattle (July 30), and wave at people. My husband has wanted to go to it for the last twenty years. I'm not really fond of parades so I found an excuse every year to not go (I know, bad wife). This year my company is asking for volunteers to walk the route behind the float (or in front of it, I'm not sure). You can only ride on the float if you wear a uniform (flight attendants, pilots, customer service agents). I haven't worn a uniform in over 20 years. I'd really rather walk it anyway. My husband is actually excited about it.

Now it's off to work!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Rambling Monday / 185.4

I'm back at work. wonderful, lovely work. I found out one of my best friends on my team accepted a position on another team. It made me want to cry finding out he's leaving. True, he'll only be about ten cubicles away from me on the same floor, still, it won't be the same. Things change, people come and go, it's called life. Sometimes it sucks.

Today is day four of the rest of my life. Three days in my pocket where I ate healthy, tracked my food, and worked out each day at the gym for an hour. Three days. Doesn't sound like much does it? Yet it makes me feel strong and capable of staying with this plan. Seeing the 185.4 on the scale this morning made it worth it. "It" being the hunger I felt these last few days. I'm starting to become accustomed to the slight feeling that I want to/need to eat. Often I don't even know if it's real or all in my head.

The 190.6 I saw last Friday morning was horrifying. I didn't really express how upset and scared I felt when I saw that number. So very close to 200.  There's always that little "what if" voice talking to me in my head. What if you can't rein this in? What if you gain back every pound and more? What if you kill yourself with food?

Did I mention before I left on vacation I purchased three pairs of blue jeans, all size 16, different brands? I didn't even try them on. They're all baggy and too long. I don't care. They feel great. Sort of like pajamas. My nieces told me I should have bought a smaller size, the 14's probably would have fit. Who goes from a size 12 right into a size 16? I was tired of the 12's cutting me at the waist and my muffin top overflowing. No muffin top now. Loose pants are good.

I skipped the gym this morning. Too tired. Now I have to pay my penance and go tonight. I detest evening workouts but it's not optional. It's part of the plan to lose the fat.

This post is all over the place. I really have nothing newsworthy to talk about. It's part of my new commitment to the blog every day. It helps me stay focused. Whether it helps anyone else, well, probably not today.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sleepless in Seattle / 186.6

My night from hell
Last night was a real struggle for me to not binge. My husband went to bed at 10 p.m. since he was exhausted from yard work. Although I was tired from pulling weeds and planting the Gerbera Daisies and Lobelia (they're beautiful), I didn't feel sleepy. This always happens when we get a nice spring day here, yard work up the wazoo. Today it's back to gray skies and rain. Although I have to admit, everything is a brilliant emerald green, hence the label of the Emerald City.

I had managed to drag myself to the gym at 5 p.m.,and got in an hour and twenty minute workout. It wasn't something I wanted to do, but I told myself, very firmly, that not going to the gym wasn't an option. I'm dying without my StairMaster, and was forced to use the elliptical again for cardio. It's not my favorite, but better than the treadmill or the stationary bike. I lifted weights for forty minutes, but noticed I felt weaker than normal. The 20-pound dumbbells felt much heavier than I remembered. Maybe it's because I was tired from the yard work, or because it was late in the day, but it was a difficult workout.

My eating for the day was pretty close to perfect, and I had entered every bite into eTools (two days in a row!). I was under by six Points  but since I had eaten five fruits I figured it all worked out okay. I'm still a little opposed to the idea that fruits are free on Weight Watchers PointsPlus. A lot of people think this is the greatest thing they've every heard of. For me, an avid fruit eater for years, I tend to overdo the fruit. Especially when that wicked little voice in my head says, "Hey, fruit is free! Eat up!". Fruit has calories too, and it's a challenge for me to not overeat on fruit.

I finally went to bed around 11 p.m. last night and couldn't sleep. When I did sleep, I dreamed about food all night. I tossed and turned, woke up several times, practically every hour. I felt like I was starving to death, but my eTools told a different story. I ate more than enough for a "normal" person. I even dreamed I was sitting in a Weight Watchers meeting, something I've never dreamed about before. All night I had to fight the urge to not get out of bed and head to the kitchen, where I could satisfy the hunger.

It was a hard-fought battle last night, but I'm happy to say I won this round. I know many of you will agree that if you can just get a day or two under your belt of healthy eating and exercise, it gets easier every day.

Cutting out all processed sugar is really helping too. I can already tell the cravings for sweets has diminished tremendously. I still use a little NuNaturals Stevia, my favorite sweetener. It doesn't have any added chemicals and is pure Stevia. The trick is to not use too much. I use a little on my fresh strawberries, especially since I can't seem to find a strawberry in this part of the country that is sweet. I also add a little Stevia and vanilla to my Fage 0% yogurt, with a half cup of frozen fruit. This is my replacement for the frozen Weight Watcher bars I was hooked on, which are essentially junk food. I totally quit buying any of the Weight Watcher products over two months ago (and proceeded to gain ten pounds, but that's not why).

Now I have to get through today. I know that sounds terrible, like I'm struggling just to get through the day, but it's the truth. This fighting the good fight against fat continues to be a battle of wills for me. I keep thinking it will get easier, but I know from my past that I can't let my guard down for any length of time or I will zoom right up to 240 pounds and most likely, even more. I could easily see myself in the 300-pound range in a matter of months.

I really did think that at this point in my life, 55 years old, this would have become easier for me. I read other blogs where the people (usually much younger than myself), have figured it out. They don't seem to struggle like I do, or at least, they don't talk about it if they do. They seem to maintain their goal weight with ease. I'm envious of them, but I have come to the conclusion that's not my lot in life. I suspect this will be a battle until my death, and one I will not give up on easily.

Another book for us fatties -- Designated Fat Girl
Right before I left for Fairbanks I purchased a book to read on the flight (no, I haven't been "Kindlized" yet). Designated Fat Girl by Jennifer Joyner. I'd never heard of this book before and just happened to see it at my local Fred Meyers (a grocery/everything store in the Northwest). It was tucked down behind some other books and didn't appear to be a best seller.

When I read the first two lines of the description on the back of the book, I knew I had to read it. It's the story about the author, Jennifer Joyner, and I could completely relate to these two sentences:

Jennifer is slowly killing herself with food. She is powerless to stop. She weighs 336 pounds.

Then the last sentence of the description:

In the end, it is also a story of recovery and survival.

The author tells about her life as a morbidly obese woman, and tells about her journey with gastric bypass surgery. It's strange because I had just read an article that gastric bypass cures diabetes in 95% of the people that had the disease when they went into surgery. It cures it by the next day. It cured Jennifer's diabetes by the day after her surgery. That alone is a miracle. If I had diabetes, I'd seriously consider gastric bypass.

Her story is interesting, and I could completely relate to her secret eating of massive amounts of food. Unfortunately, I think it may have done me more harm than good. Knowing there was someone else out there just like me wasn't as comforting as I thought it would be. It made me just that much more aware that I have a serious illness when it comes to food. I'm still on the fence about being a food addict, which Jennifer talks about. I'm just not sure if someone can actually be addicted to food.

It's still a great read, and she's very honest about her struggles. I would highly recommend it, especially if you're considering gastric bypass. Unfortunately for Jennifer, she almost died from complications after the surgery, yet she still said she'd do it again. I don't think I could ever agree to be surgically altered to lose weight, whether gastric bypass or the lapband. Neither of these paths are an easy way out, and although I understand they're the answer for a lot of other people, it's just not for me.

By the way, I've seen several blogs recently where people that weigh less that me, in the 170 to  180 range, have had lapband surgery. Personally, I find it odd that someone that needs to drop 40 pounds is undergoing surgery and that a respectable doctor would perform the surgery. That's just my opinion, maybe they had a reason for it that I don't understand (and they never mention on their blogs). I'm not against it, it's just that surgery of any type is always my very last resort.

Lazy Sunday
I'm feeling super lazy today, and only have a couple things on my agenda. One is to make my most favorite soup in the world, Veggie Chicken Chowder (a South Beach recipe), and then hit gym before noon (which means I'd better get going!). Afterwards I'm going to catch up on my blog reading. A nice, lazy Sunday afternoon, my favorite kind.

Postscript:  I just went to Jennifer Joyner's blog. I read some of the reviews on Amazon about her book, Designated Fat Girl, and someone mentioned that Jennifer never tells us her weight in her book. Whether she's 5' 1" or 5' 11" makes a huge difference in her weight of 336 pounds. They also mentioned she has a blog, which I wanted to look at. What I found on her blog, posted Friday, May 13, 2011, was a little troubling. Jennifer is struggling big time. Even though her gastric bypass surgery helped her lose a lot of weight (I can't remember for sure, but it was over 100 pounds), she's still fighting her inner demons. Interestingly, she says she's tired of fighting and just wants to  "be". Hmmm...where have I heard that one before? Oh yeah, inside my own head. :) 

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Day 1 down and the rest of my lift to go / 188.6

This is only the beginning, again
I made it through yesterday, eating exactly my PointsPlus allotment of 29. I only had three servings of fruit all day (my personal limit), but lots of vegetables. I even managed to follow all the healthy eating guidelines (except for dairy - I can never get in three dairy a day).

The day wasn't without challenges. It started first thing in the morning when I opened our refrigerator in the garage to check on how many fresh vegetables and fruits were on hand. It's our "overflow" fridge when the one in the house is full. There wasn't a fresh vegetable or fruit in sight in the house fridge. I honestly don't think my husband would ever eat either one if I didn't insist on it.

Instead of fresh fruits and vegetables in our extra refrigerator I found a giant cheesecake from Costco with two slices missing. What the hell?! My husband gave me some lame excuse that it was for a party at work but he forgot to take it into the office so he decided to have a couple slices. I'm not sure if that's the real story, but he insists it's true.

When I got to the gym BOTH of "my" StairMasters were out of order. Seriously, both of them, how could that happen? I had my heart set on a good StairMaster workout. It's the cardio machine that gives me the biggest bang for the buck, easily getting my heart up in the 140 range. It's just about impossible to cheat on the StairMaster (because people are watching me it's embarrassing to slow down the speed).

Instead of the StairMaster I decided on an elliptical workout. That's when my iPod stopped working. It wasn't that it wasn't actually working, but the wheel thing stopped working. It was on a low volume, which I couldn't adjust. I couldn't get to a playlist, but had to listen to the songs with the performers listed alphabetically. I had no idea I had so many Black Eyed Peas and Britney Spears songs. It was really annoying. I finally took the time to sit down on the floor and do the reset thing and now it works just fine. Of course this was after my cardio workout, which by the way was hell. The fatter I get the harder it is to do cardio.

I didn't binge last night or eat anything that wasn't planned yeserday. Everything was entered in the online eTools. That's the first time I've done that in about two weeks.This is just the beginning. I have the rest of my life to stay on plan.

What I learned the last two weeks
There's something I've learned from my week of "not really eating that much" but gaining five pounds. It's that I have to pay attention to what I eat. I almost have to be obsessed by it. I will probably never learn to "relax" and "be at peace" with food. I know a lot of people are capable of doing this, and not stressing out about their food and they learn how to eat "normally".

My lesson learned is that I'm not one of those people. We're all different in this world and what works for a lot of people doesn't work for me. My peace with food means that I have to be completely committed to eating healthy and smaller portions, and I have to aim for this commitment 100% of the time. I can't go off for a week and eat full-fat cheese and candy whenever the mood strikes me. The resulting weight gain is simply not worth it.

Of course, I realize I can't be 100% perfect all the time, but it's my goal. I'm not a failure if I fall off now and then, but I can't fall off for an entire week.

Now I'm off to plant my Gerbera Daisies I bought at Costco this morning (where I stocked up on fresh fruit and vegetables, salmon and chicken...and no cheesecake!). They're so gorgeous I can't wait to get them planted and take a picture to post here tomorrow.

Then the gym later today when it's suppose to start raining at 5pm. Right now it's 61 degrees and sunshine. Around here you've got to enjoy that sun while you can, because it'll be gone in a few  hours and not return for days (Seattle, need I say more).

Friday, May 13, 2011

Home sweet home / 190.6

The wicked weigh-in May 13, 2011

The first words out of my mouth this morning when I stepped on the scales for the first time in over a week:  HOLY SHIT!


The last time I saw this number was June 2008 (I checked my stats). I'd been on Weight Watchers for about four months at that point. I had gone from 240 to 190 in five months. I passed it quickly and never returned. Until now.

To say I'm horrified and scared is a BIG understatement. Have I been beating myself up all morning? You bet.

I gained five pounds in seven days. I didn't think I ate that poorly, but it would appear I was wrong. I barely moved off the couch in seven days since my sister was still recovering from pneumonia. She was doing much better and just had a mild cough, but she was very tired. Normally, she goes to the gym five days a week, every week. She's been doing this for over three years (she's 72 and normally the picture of health).

All week all of us (my sister and two adult nieces) sat around all day, talked non-stop, watched a little TV, went out to eat a few times, and I ate two things that never pass my lips normally:  full-fat cheddar cheese and candy (darn those grand-kids and their candy). These two things are my kryptonite. Extra sharp Tillamook cheddar cheese and every variety of candy you can imagine.

This extra weight is very uncomfortable. It's depressing, and I'm angry with myself that I let this happen.

What's next?
Number one on my plan to get back in control is the gym. I can honestly say I've missed it terribly in the past week. I know my consistent exercise has kept me from re-gaining all my weight. It makes me feel good and happy. It builds my self-confidence, and I really think it helps me keep better control of my eating.

As soon as I publish this post I'm heading out to the gym. I'm actually excited about it. It's become a huge part of my life and it's something I'll never stop if I can help it.

I have a plan for my eating too. Back to the basics. When I first went to Fairbanks I was following a Detox diet that some of my friends talked me into doing with them. One of them has a daughter that's a nutritionist and she'd put together an eating plan that was suppose to detox the body of toxins.

I tried the detox for the first couple of days. Since it's very restrictive and there were some things we were suppose to eat that I couldn't stand and things we weren't suppose to eat that I love, I was miserable. After two days I said to hell with it. That's when I started eating cheese and candy.

In addition, my sister is barely eating since the pneumonia (she barely eats much when she's feeling good). I counted her calories for a couple days and she was eating about 400 calories a day. She's just not hungry and she refused to eat. Getting her to even eat the 400 calories was difficult.

The result was I'd go long stretches without eating. Of course, I could have eaten anything I wanted at any time. I'm very relaxed at my sister's house, it's just like being at my own home. Yet I found I'd try to go long stretches trying to not eat since she wasn't eating and hoping I'd eat less overall. That did NOT work. When I finally ate something, I'd be starving and I'd overeat.

So when I say back to basics, it's back to eating basic food, and eating every three to four hours, and following the Good Health Guidelines (Weight Watchers, and why in heaven's name is this so freaking hard to find on their website? ).

The Good Health Guidelines
1. Eat at least five servings of vegetables and fruits each day, (nine servings if you weigh over 350 pounds.)
2. Choose whole-grain foods, such as brown rice and oats, whenever possible.
3. Include two servings of milk products – low fat (1%) or fat-free – each day. If you’re a nursing mom, teenager, over 50 years old, or weigh more than 250 pounds, you should have three servings of milk products each day.
4. Have 2 teaspoons of healthy oils (olive oil, canola, sunflower, safflower or flaxseed) each day.
5. Ensure that you are getting enough protein by choosing at least a serving or two of lean meats, skinless poultry, fish, beans, soy products, and lentils.
6. Limit added sugar and alcohol.
7. Drink at least 6 8-ounce glasses of liquid a day. Water is the best choice.
8. Take a multiple vitamin-mineral supplement each day. 

That's all there is to it. It's simple, easy, basic, nothing fancy. Just back to what worked before and I know will work again.

A note about the hCG Diet
I have three friends doing the stupid hCG diet, where you get injected with a hormone from a pregnant woman's urine, eat 500 calories a day, and you're NOT suppose to exercise (other than short walks). These are smart, intelligent women doing this diet. Until now I couldn't find a really good article about the hCG diet. I finally found one in the June 2011 issue of Prevention magazine. Check out this article:  Diet Spotlight:  Does the hCG Diet work?

I knew this was a bad idea!

A few Alaska pictures from my vacation

 About ten minutes from the Anchorage, Alaska airport

 More of the same

 About a minute before landing in Anchorage

 Obviously, I love mountains!

 The view from my sister's house, off the front porch.
 There's a moose out there, but you can barely see it on the left.

The view to the other direction

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Going home today

I'm still in Fairbanks, getting ready to pack up my suitcase and flying home to Seattle later today.

I've had a great seven days with my sister. I'm so very blessed to have her in my life. Even though there's 17 years difference in our ages (she's 72, I'm 55), we have a very close connection.

It's funny that we are so close now, but we barely had a relationship at all for the first 47 years of my life. We lived in different states, she was married with four children. I didn't marry until I was 33, and I never had children. We thought we had absolutely nothing in common.

Then our mother, that we both adored, became ill about eight years ago. We spent three weeks together, taking care her. Just my mom, who was very sick, my sister and myself.

We discovered a lot about each other during that time and realized we have a lot in common. In fact, it's almost like we're the same person. We have the same sense of humor, the same view of life, and the same struggles with our weight. We think the same and like an old married couple, we often finish sentences for each other because we know what the other is thinking.

We've had a great visit, actually getting some time where it was just the two of us. I love my brother and my two nieces and their families, but sometimes I just want to talk with my sister. This is the first visit since my brother-in-law passed away that other people didn't stay at the house while I was here. They were over during the day, but they went home at night. My sister and I stayed up after midnight most nights just talking. I'm so blessed to have her in my life.

I leave on the 5:15 p.m. flight, non-stop to Seattle. It's a three and half hour flight. I'm eager to get home, but at the same time, sad to leave my sister.

The good thing is I'll be back in July when my brother's daughter and her family fly in from New Jersey. I haven't seen her in over twenty years. We're all a little nervous since we lost contact for several years (my brother divorced her mother about 33 years ago). I think it'll be a good visit. I've talked to this niece on the phone lately and she seems like a really sweet, dear person. It'll be fun to get to know her better, along with her husband and 10-year old daughter that none of us have ever met.

The diet & exercise 
I've been doing my usual of eating at night. Perfect all day, then raiding the refrigerator at night. My sister sleeps upstairs and my room is right off the kitchen. My favorite food of choice lately is Tillamook extra sharp cheddar cheese. My sister keeps a 2-pound block of the stuff in the fridge. She eats about 1/2 ounce a day. I've been eating about six ounces a day. Add in some of the grand-kids candy I've been snacking on in the middle of the night, and I'm sure I have a weight gain.

Exercise has been non-existent. My sister is still a little sick from the pneumonia she had a couple weeks ago and hasn't been going to the gym. She normally does water aerobics five days a week and never misses a class unless she's ill, which is almost never. The pneumonia really knocked her down hard, and although she's almost well, she was still too sick to exercise.

I walked down to the Tanana river with one of my nieces one day (about three miles round-trip), but that's been it for my exercise. There's the treadmill upstairs that I could have used, but honestly, it's like we wanted to squeeze in as much visiting time as possible. I didn't want to go upstairs by myself and exercise. It just didn't seem right and I didn't want to do it.

Tomorrow I'll get back in the exercise routine, and I'm just itching to get back to the gym. I can honestly say I really miss it. Today I'll eat lightly and healthy, since there won't be any more cheese in my life. :)

Plus, I haven't read any blogs all week, and I miss you guys! I've barely been on the computer at all, which is really weird for me but at the same time, sort of refreshing. It turns out I can live without spending hours on the computer (although I really do sort of miss it).

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Walking a tight rope (and falling off the rope) / 186.8

For me, a fat woman trying to become a normal, mentally balanced woman and be at a healthy weight, my life is like walking a tight rope, and I keep falling off the damned rope.

My last post on Saturday was about enjoying food. Well guess what? Stupid, stupid, stupid idea! I went crazy, trying new recipes, all Weight Watchers or from weight loss blogs. There are many wonderful recipes out there that are healthy. The trick, though, is to eat just one portion. When the food is delicious and I really enjoy it, I struggle with the portion size.

I made Weight Watcher Chicken Tortilla Soup from the new Weight Watchers cookbook (from Costco). I've had the book for months, since the PointsPlus program came out. I hadn't even cracked it open. The soup is wonderful, but a serving is 1 1/4 cups with 1/5 of an avocado. Not three cups with a whole avocado!

I tried several other recipes since Saturday. I've been a cooking machine. I've also been an eating machine.

Sometimes, I'm my own worst enemy. I get what I think are brilliant ideas that lead to my downfall. It's very frustrating.

Wednesday's weigh-in at my at-work Weight Watchers meeting was 186.8. Tell me, who belongs to TWO Weight Watcher groups and actually GAINS weight?! Oh, right, that would be ME.

Good grief, what is wrong with me?

Okay, so enough with the self-pity? What's next on my agenda? How am I going to turn this around, and quickly?

1. Back to exercising. That's right, in the last four days during my cooking/eating frenzy, I decided I was too tired/lazy/bored/busy to get my butt to the gym. What the hell was that about? As soon as I hit the "publish post" button on this post, I'm out the door and to the gym.

There's a little kink in my plan. I'm officially on vacation starting today and through next week. I'm leaving for Fairbanks tomorrow to visit my sister. My 72-year old sister, the gym rat. The one that goes to the gym five days a week, every week.

Sadly, she's recovering from pneumonia and hasn't been to the gym for seven days. It's unlikely she'll be returning soon since she was really sick. I have to figure out how to get in exercise while I'm visiting. She has a treadmill at home (that she never uses), so as much as I hate the treadmill, I might have to get on the thing. If the weather is good, I could walk outside, but she lives out in the middle of no where (thirty miles from Fairbanks), and walking by myself is a tiny bit scary. I'll just have to figure this out.

2. Food - gosh, what can I say here that hasn't been said a thousand times on this blog about me and food? There's just no way around it, I have to really limit what and how much I eat. This isn't a free-for-all. I can't eat just because I "think" I'm hungry. I can't eat how much I really want to eat. I know what a portion size looks like, I know how to eat healthy. I know what to order when eating out. None of this is new to me.

3. Mindset - Exercise and food are of course the key to losing weight, but more important is having your head in the game. If I don't have that, nothing else matters. I have to be 100% in the game. Period. Doing this halfway, not giving it my all just doesn't work.

My one saving grace here is my sister is a health nut. She's been one for decades, before it was really popular. She's been making her own homemade, whole wheat bread for over twenty years. She eats like a bird and oddly, is never hungry (I sometimes wonder if we're even related!).

The only bad junk in her house is for all the grandkids, yes, she has cookies and candy for the grandkids. She never touches the stuff, but it's there for the kids. This is going to require major willpower. 

I won't be posting until I get back, next week on Thursday. Of course, lately, that's sort of normal posting for me. Once or twice a week. I really need to pick that up a bit. :)

Awesome things

I leave you with a few "awesome" things in my life. The guy that wrote 1,000 Awesome Things was on the Today show a couple days ago. It got me to thinking that even though as much as I complain about my life, there are lots of awesome things that happen to me every day. I wrote out some of the earlier this week, intending to post them, but I never got around to it. Speaking of the word "awesome", it sort of annoys me because it's so overused. Regardless, these things were pretty awesome to me.

Diana's short list of awesome things this week:

Written on Tuesday, May 2:

1. Talking to my sister in Fairbanks on my way to work today. Discussing how I'll be in Fairbanks this Friday and staying for a week, and how we can't wait to see each other. I just LOVE her!

2. Arriving at work and a group of my favorite people from another team are in the lunchroom. We chat for about ten minutes. One guy that's hysterically funny and has always had a beard says "well, if I shave all this off I'll look like a hairless cat". Cracked me up because I could totally picture him as a giant, hairless cat (he's 6' 4").

3. Last night, reading this on my niece's Facebook page, posted by a male friend of hers: Nothing like killing a terrorist leader to get people to shut the hell up about the royal wedding. So true!

4. At first, I was a little disturbed by all the celebration over bin Laden's death. Of course I'm glad that he's no longer on this planet, but the dancing in the streets over the death of another human being didn't feel right to me. Then I read how the United States handled bin Laden's burial, and I smiled to myself. Even though bin laden was a dreadful, evil person, the United States handled his remains with dignity. It made me proud to be a citizen of the United States.

From the Chicago Beacon-News article:

Bin Laden’s body was taken to an aircraft carrier, the USS Carl Vinson, and his burial quickly was done in accordance with Islamic custom. His corpse was washed, then wrapped in a white sheet and placed in a weighted bag, according to news reports. As a U.S. military chaplain read religious rites, which were translated into Arabic, the body was placed on a board, tipped up and dropped into the North Arabian Sea.

5. Last Friday, taking my favorite kitty, Mickey, to the vet because he was doing a weird drooling thing and acting odd. He's never drooled and he acted like he didn't feel good. This is the same cat that four years ago had a 106 degree fever in the middle of one of the worst snowstorms ever. I made my husband drive through foot deep snow on the I5 freeway so we could take Mickey to the emergency vet, where after fluids and a $1,200 vet bill, he was fine.

At the vet visit Friday, she told me all the things that could be wrong with Mickey: kidney failure, some weird kitty virus that can cause death (drooling is a sign), and numerous other things I can't even pronounce. All of them with devastating consequences. He's only six years old. He's my baby. After taking his blood, and waiting 24 hours for the results (and I was just sure he was dying), I get the phone call. All results were perfect. He's perfectly healthy, perhaps just a cold. That could cause the drooling.

6. Waking up this morning with my kitty, Mickey, sitting on my chest and staring at me, purring (and not drooling anymore!).

7. Getting this comment from Christine on my post about Marianne Williamson's stupid weight loss book. This made me laugh out loud:

Christine said:
I bought the book and went with a friend to see her speak. She's a self-indulgent, pompous loon who talks down to people. What she says makes no sense and I agree with your assessment of her book. Don't waste your time reading it. 

8. Walking in the sunshine at noon with a work friend. Everything is emerald green from all the rain the past several months (the rain which I've cursed every day for at least six months). All the trees are budding out and our walk down the Des Moines Creek Trail near work was gorgeous. We saw a bald eagle soaring above us with six tiny birds chasing it and acting like they were trying to attack it. The eagle could have cared less, they were like little pesky mosquitoes to him. The eagle's wing span was a least eight feet across. Beautiful.

9. Truly awesome thing for today, May 5:  waking up and knowing I was off work for eleven days. Woohoo!