Saturday, January 25, 2014

Decision: Go to the gym or cancel the membership?

I'm in the middle of a refinance on my house. This is a "post-divorce, must cash out half the equity for the ex-husband" refinance. So far it's going well, credit approved, closing date about to be set, now just waiting.

I have to come up with a significant amount of cash for the closing costs (which of course, is all out of my pocket and must be paid up front). I've been brutal with my budget, really cutting back on things I deem unnecessary.

When I saw the $32.00 monthly gym membership withdrawal in my checking account last week, I questioned myself, is this really a good way to spend my money? I've been averaging a once a week visit to the gym. That's about $8 for 45 minutes of exercise a week. I walk a couple times a week at work during my lunch hour. That's been it for my exercise for months now.

So I've made a deal with myself. I have to go to the gym three times this week, starting with today. If I can't get my butt to the gym at least three times in this seven-day period, then I go to the gym one week from today and cancel my membership.

The thought of canceling the membership makes me sad. It feels like I gave up on trying to exercise. I keep telling myself it's only $32.00 a month and maybe I'll start going again on a regular basis. On the other hand, it's stupid to pay for something if I'm not going to use it.

Maybe I should use the cookie versus my foot mentality on the gym. If I don't exercise then I'll most likely gain more weight and get diabetes. Which is worse, going to the gym or losing my foot? I sort of suspect losing my foot is much worse then exercising a few times a week. In fact, there's no comparison.

I promise to post back here next week on how this goes. My intention of course is to go to the gym at least three times this week. But that's been my intention for months, and I haven't done it. Maybe a public announce will do it for me. Let's hope so. I feel like something needs to click for me.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Do I want a cookie or my foot?


Every year the month of January is dedicated to the same topic on all the television shows. Our heads are filled with suggestions on how to get healthy with weight loss and exercise.

I've heard it all, but this year it seems more intense. It's more urgent this time around, or maybe that's just me. Maybe I'm feeling more urgent. I am pushing 60. Okay, technically I'm only "58", but the years are passing me by quickly. I'm still not at a healthy weight.

Even my cancer diagnosis didn't convince me of the importance of eating right and exercising. Of everything that could convince a person to get on a healthy track, you would think cancer would scare the pants off of me (or rather, the fat off of me!).

I let the fear of my cancer returning control me for a few months. I banned sugar, white flour, choose only organic. I was even paying an arm and a leg for free-range, organic fed chicken, only to be told free-range and organic doesn't always mean what I thought it meant.

A couple weeks ago I heard something on a morning news show that jolted me. It was an actress talking about her 60-pound weight loss. I don't know her name, and even tried to go back and find the story so I could give her credit, but I can't find anything on the story.

Her story was a familiar one and perhaps one we've all been through. She was about 60 pounds overweight and borderline diabetic. She is a single mother of a young child. The actress' own mother had died of diabetes when the actress was only eight years old.

This actress said something very profound that has stuck with me since I saw the interview. She said that when she wanted to go off her diet and eat something like a cookie, she would say to herself, "Do I want that cookie or my foot?". She said the answer was easy, she wanted her foot of course!

I'm not pre-diabetic, at least not yet. I had my blood work done in December and everything was normal except the crazy cholesterol numbers. I still don't know how my cholesterol could have jumped 80 points in just six months. I go back to the doctor in March to have my blood work done again.

Back to the diabetes. I could easily become diabetic because of my weight. I had three aunts that were diabetic. One even had both of her legs amputated before she passed away from complications from the diabetes.

So my new mantra to myself lately has been, "Do I want <insert bad food choice here>, or my foot?". As creepy and morbid as this sounds, it seems to be working for me. I've really cut back on the sweets.

In fact, I've cut back on a lot of things but the weight isn't budging. I know it's because of the obvious, I'm still eating too much and I'm still not exercising on a consistent basis. My only exercise is a walk during lunch at work two or three times a week and once a week gym visits. It's not enough. My body needs more exercise.

I know the importance of a plan when it comes to getting healthy, and then following the plan. At the moment, I don't have a plan.

I dropped out of Weight Watchers. Just like everything I try when it comes to losing weight, it works for a while, then I get bored with it, and it doesn't work anymore. I don't know what the next big thing is for me.

If there's anyone reading this that has found something that really works for them, please drop me a comment and let me know what is working for you. I'm just sort of at a loss right now. I need a plan! Keeping my feet is a good plan, but I need something more.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

It's a new year and a new life

So much happened to me last year that it almost seems like it happened to someone else. In spite of the really ugly parts, I'm glad I made it through it.

If you've been reading along you know the year was filled with despair and pain. Starting in late 2012 with a physical assault against me by my husband of 24 years, followed by a long year of waiting for the case to go to trial and then it being dropped at the last minute by the prosecutor. Not enough evidence.

During that year I was in the middle of a bitter divorce battle with my husband. True to his word, he had told me many times that if I ever divorced him that he would destroy me. Well, he tired but I'm proud to say that I'm officially divorced as of December 31,2013, and I'm still standing. He didn't succeed at destroying me even though he gave it his best effort. In another post that I plan on writing someday is the flaws of a community property state, but I'll save that for another day.

Throw in the cancer, a rare, deadly and aggressive cancer, Uterine Leiomyosarcoma and two cancer surgeries to remove it, and you get the picture my last year.

On the other side of all of this tragedy something wonderful happened. I fell in love with a wonderful, kind and loving man. I'm not sure if I would have made it through this year without him. He held me as I wept over my cancer diagnosis. He nursed me through both of my cancer surgeries. He commiserated with me over the unfairness of my divorce settlement and the stupid community property laws in this state (Washington). He's gone with me every Sunday to see my disabled sister, when we both put on a happy face for her to make sure she has a good time on her weekly outings with us. He is a good man, and I'm very lucky to have him in my life.

My weight has been on the upswing. I weighed in at 207 this morning. That's 33 pounds from my highest weight of 240 and 55 pounds from my low of 152 about three years ago. I'm fat. There's no question about it.

2014 is going to be my year to get healthy once and for all. I don't have a specific plan on how to do it yet. I'm still working on the details. Exercise will be key since I know that's essential not only to weight loss but to a happy spirit. It's the best antidepressant I know (and it's free with no negative side effects). More on the details later.

Today I'm recovering from the flu. Two days of 102 temperature and pretty much feel like I've been beaten up. I'm exhausted and every part of me hurts. Normal temperature this morning so I'm getting better. For now I'm just resting and taking it easy. By Monday I should be on track with a new plan.