Monday, August 30, 2010

elimination vs. moderation

Touchy subject, I know - with as many opinions as there are people with opinions.  For me, I've tried moderation - and it works.  Short term.  6 months or so I can eat in moderation.  I've done it before - many many time.  I bet most of us have. 

So I'm trying something new.  I'm going to start eliminating the foods that I have the hardest time moderating. 

I started with candy and it's been 3 weeks.  3 weeks since I've had ANY candy.  It's hard.  There are cues everywhere.  Stopping for gas, taking a walk, strong emotions - all bring up the neon "buy candy" sign in my head.  Still.  But it's only been 3 weeks.  And it IS getting better.  Slowly, oh so very very slowly.  But I'm determined. 

I've maintained my weight loss - but my binging is still not completely under control.  So while candy is off the menu, chips, and other sweets (cookies and ice cream) are the main culprits.  So I will eliminate them as well.  But not all at once.  That just sounds like a nightmare.  Today is my first day chip-free.  NO chips, no crackers, nothing that fits into the crunchy/salty/snacking category as I define it. 

I feel a bit like an alcoholic (it IS an addiction) who's no long drinking whiskey and now tequila and slowly eliminating the other drinks that end in waking up face down on the lawn of a stranger.  I don't know if it will work.  But I do know that the definition of insanity is trying the same thing and expecting different results. 

I've tried moderation.  And while I'm the first to admit that maybe someday it WILL work, I'm just tired of falling off that wagon.  Last month candy, this month chips/crackers, next month refined sugar.  We'll see how I'm feeling after that.  Mostly I'll see what my brain tries to substitute - if it DOES try to substitute - or if this is truly a way of conquering my addiction.

Call me crazy...or call me clever...either way I'd love to hear what you think:  Is this rational or am I grasping at straws and making excuses?  Is this something you've tried?  Success or disaster? 

Ultimately I'd like to end up eating a very clean 'diet' (meaning menu more than calorie restriction).  Whole foods, wholesome foods, I don't know exactly what it will end up being - but I'm a little excited to see.

Exercise wise - I'm doing ok - been swimming to get ready for this week's race (1,000m swim/8k run) and then I need to get ready for my sprint triathlon on Sept. 18th (really need to get some biking in - the course is SUPER hilly - I've done it before and nearly cried at how hard the hills were!).  I haven't been running - making every excuse in the book, mostly just because even after all the running I've done, I still hate it.  But I volunteered to help my daughter lead a group at church of teen runners so now Tuesday and Thursday evenings there WILL be running.  And I'd better do some the other 5 days a week or the teenager are all going to laugh at this old mom!!  Nothing like a little pressure to get me moving!!

Ok - looking forward to every one's opinions (it's ok to call me crazy, just be a little gentle...)

Tonight's my first wedding anniversary - Husband's got a dinner out planned - steak and lobster (no butter) - and then the top tier of our wedding cake when we get home.  I've got a great red dress to wear that I'll have my kids take a picture....until tomorrow!


Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Well, I made it to the pool last night!  Finally - I feel like progress!  Swam 1,000m in 27 minutes so now I'm MORE certain I can make next week's race in under the time cut off. 

Did I mention I'm doing an Aquathon next week?  It intrigued me so I signed up - 1,000m swim followed by a 8k run.  After I signed up, I started looking at the details.  There's a time cut off.  And my BEST times are pretty much their time cut offs.  And I've been slacking on the running lately so I'm a little nervous.  I really don't want a ride home in the sweep car. 

Last night we had a car club meeting - which is always held at a buffet.  *le sigh* 

I did pretty good - a nice fresh salad to start, a rare piece of steak and a side of broccoli, then the frosting off a mini cupcake.  And I stopped there.  No grazing.  No seconds.  No dessert on my way out the door.  And no candy off the sundae bar.  Definately a win for me. 

Lately I've been paying more attention to how I dress.  I'm a "whatever's clean" sort of gal.  But lately I've been forcing myself to pay more attention.  I've been adding a necklace here and there - putting on shoes instead of flip flops, passing up the usual t-shirts in the closet.  And people are noticing.  It's kind of fun.  I could get used to it.  It's definately a pick me up when someone else comments on how I look. 

Which leads me to this: It's time to go through the closet again.  I've got some clothes that aren't flattering, sag, and are my "Just in Case" clothes.  You know the ones.  The comfy pants that when you're having a "there's no way I'll fit in THAT" day you pull them out.  You know they'll fit.  And you ignore the fact that you'll be yanking them UP all day. And by lunch you're writing yourself notes to donate the damn things already.  But there's an attachment there - something that prevents me from purging them.  "But what if...."

I'm wearing a pair of size 12 pants today - a little stretchy is how I justify it.  Somehow I can't seem to convince myself that I EARNED a pair of size 12 pants.  Somehow it's easier to believe that the 16's I wore yesterday is what I deserve.  Those are going in donate and out the door TONIGHT.  Both pairs.  Yup.  I have 2 pairs of size 16 that I  can't seem to let go of.  Just in case...

Body image is so damn tricky.  My husband (and most men I know) don't seem to have the same issues.  How many people here have men in their lives who wear the same size pants as xxx pounds ago - they won't admit that they're buttoned a lot lower now.  When they FIT them, the button was much closer to their actual waist.  Now they're fashionably "low waisted", held up in some cases only by pubic hair.  EEWWW.  Sorry for that... 

But why don't men have the same issues?  Is it biological?  Social?  Denial?  I know there are some men who do suffer from it - but most of the ones I know could give a rip if their pants are above or below their waist - they don't seem to care that their pants size is shows on the OUTSIDE of their pants (raise your hand if you'd allow THAT to happen?!), they just seem somehow so much more confident than women (generalizing - I know).  They have their own issues...but when it comes to body image?  I want to be a man! 


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

no new is good 16

Saturday was 2 weeks no candy.  I've had cookies and chips and some other not-so-great food - but no candy.  I've had it thrown at me (parade), offered to me, brought from Hawaii, gone to the movies, been at a ball game: all without candy.  I'm starting to believe I CAN do this.  The other junk food has been in moderation. 

Surprisingly, I've actually thrown a lot of stuff out - or given it to hubby or the kids.  I'm trying to be aware of what actually TASTES good.  Spend a week doing's enlightening.  There are foods I eat that I don't actually like the taste of.  I've been using moderation as well.  I haven't been writing everything down, more just trying to pay attention.  Be aware.  It's been interesting. 

My next elimination item will be chips - target date Sept 1.  This is a big one.  I love chips.  The taste, the smell...well, you know.  I just love them.  But they're a trigger for me.  And while I love EATNIG them, the aftertaste of guilt isn't worth it. 

I'll replace them with more fruits and vegetables.  Ya, that's the plan (good thing I LIKE fruits and vegetables!). 

My exercise hasn't been great - I've been active and walking and working in the yard, all of which count towards activity - but I haven't been running, swimming, or biking in awhile.  Tonight I WILL swim - I need to make sure I can swim the distance I'm signed up for without drowning. 

How's everyone else doing - I've been slacking on the blogging and blog reading - work is crazy, life is crazy, my internet time seems to be at a premium these days.  I need to re-prioritize. 

so - that's my update - and my weigh-in this week is 202.8.  But that's about to change this week! 


Monday, August 16, 2010

For Drazil

Because I can't post a comment from work - but you NEED to see this!!  Everyone else will love it too - but if you go read Drazil today you'll understand why she especially needs it!

Happy Monday everyone!


the birthday girl! ;)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

conversation at the grocery store...

So Friday morning was chaos from the word go.  Thursday night I stayed up let getting  lasagna ready (ok ok - buying a frozen one because I FORGOT!) for the next day's potluck at work.  I put it in the oven and set the over for delay cook.  The oven came on as planned at 5am and went off as planned at 6am when I usually get up.  I think you see where this is going.  I finally woke up at 7am to a crispy non-edible brick.  So I got dressed in a rush, headed (late) out the door and stopped at the store for lasagna I could just heat up at work before the potluck.  I LOVE to cook for other people so I was really disappointed for forgetting the night before, frustrated at waking up late, and angry about pretty much everything at that point.  I headed into the grocery store.  I have a little talk with myself on the way in - no, really - this is something I have to do these days. 
"Self" I say, "you will not buy candy.  You just won't.  You promised.  So no candy, ok?  No, really, I mean it, you won't buy any candy"
thank goodness other people can't read minds, I would be locked up by now and on soft foods with rounded utensils only.

So my self-talk says I won't buy candy.  The rest of my brain is focused on how angry/frustrated/disappointed and LATE I am.  Stress.  *trigger*

But I won't buy candy.  I just won't!

So then, just inside the door, in the "buy me now I'm on SALE SALE SALE section" is a rack of candy.  I'm barely tempted and look quickly away.

Right at the display with bags of cookies.  You've seen them, I'm sure.  The 'handy grab' foil bags of Nutter Butters (hubby's favorite), Oreos (OMG Oreos...), and Circus Animals Crackers.

I go through the list - Nutter Butters aren't for me, Oreos are sinful and have one foot in the candy category so those are off limits.  But the Animal crackers?  They're not frosted, they're rather plain, and I'm angry.  I mean, hungry?  No.  Really I'm a whole jumble of negative emotions.  And my brain is screaming at me - they're plain for crying out loud - what's WRONG with that.  "It's still binging and THAT's wrong" said the shrinking part of my brain (why is the reasonable side so much smaller/quieter than the binging voice?  years of practice maybe?  I feel like a lopsided weightlifter....)

The conversation goes back and forth - I even picked up and put back the bag before I put it in my basket.  Oh geesh.  You know what I say.... "if you BUY it you will EAT it" 

I know myself too well. 

So I buy it.  And in the car...yup.  I started eating them.  All while having the conversation in my head about how what I was doing RIGHT NOW - this behavior - it was binging and EXACTLY what I'm trying to avoid.  I finally got a grip - just a small grip.  And sealed the bag.  Then unsealed it and ate  few more.  Then sealed it again and threw it on the passenger side floor where it was difficult to eat. 

Yes, as if I were a toddler without full reasoning power, I had to make it unreachable in order to stop.  *eye roll*  Is this really what I've become? 

I replayed the grocery store conversation in my head  few more times.  And I'm still not sure how to make the non-binge voice louder.  One solution is grocery shop online.  Look over the items, KNOW I'm making wise choices and then let them deliver them too me and avoid the temptation all together for now.  But that's not the long term solution. 

I'm toying with trying OA again - I know in my heart of hearts that I need to be there.  I know that I have to make time.  I just have to make time.  I have to. 

Meanwhile, I continue the battle with (very minor and self diagnosed) schizophrenia - for lack of a better term - and occassionally I win.  But sometimes I lose. 

Off for the rest of my eventful weekend!


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

What if...

This tiny phrase just popped into my head and it was followed by an endless stream of - well - I couldn't even figure all of it out.  But one part stuck out.  And I'm asking all of you the same question...

What if....tomorrow you woke up at your goal weight?  What's the first thing you would do? 

*I don't have my own answer to it yet - the idea of it shocks my brain into utter silence*

But I'm guessing that it might be one of my hurdles I'm facing.  What WILL I do when I reach my goal??  I can't even picture it - and if you can't picture your goal, how do you achieve it?  I can picture myself running races, I can picture myself choosing healthy foods and/or healthy portions.  But there's a mental block that is making it hard to picture myself at goal.  This is something I will work on this week.  maybe google some images of body types and how I picture myself at 150.  Maybe some pictures of athletes competing and/or winning.  I'm not sure how it's going to look for me.  But I'm going to find out.

Happy Wednesday everyone!

PS.  Still no candy - day 5 today!  Last night I bought Dibs ice cream treats - ate 5 small dibs and stopped.  It was logged.  It's not candy.  But it's close.  And the self control part - both in choosing the ice cream and in the portion size - was a victory.  I will not eat candy.  I just won't.  I can't. 


Monday, August 9, 2010

Monday weigh in - starting over

OK - so I'm starting over - clean slate, new day, new week, etc.  And today's weigh in puts me up more than I care to admit. But that's what this blog's about.  Putting it all out there. 

So, without further ado:  206.8

Not 240.  Not even 230, 220, or 210.  So it could have been worse.  It's only been a month but I really am lucky to not have gained more.  I felt a lot more out of control.  So 206.8 it is.  And a goal of reaching 199 again before the end of August.  I need to come up with a few more goals for August.  But not right now.  Right now I have to get back to work...I have to leave on time today, I have a run to get in tonight!


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Proof that the universe has a sense of humor!!

Ok - so I've contemplated, casual polled, reconsidered and finally came to this decision:  I am cutting candy out of my diet.  Completely.  Candy for now.  Refined sugar down the road.  But candy is easy to define.  So yesterday was day 1.  And we had a motorcycle ride planned - a nice all day curvy ride with hubby and I and anyone from our church group who wanted to show up. 

One guy showed and then backed out due to weather (it was threatening to rain).  So hubby and I headed north...destination sleepy tourist town for lunch.  It was cloudy and threat of rain but nothing yet - and as we got into one small town on our way, we were blocked ... by a parade!! 

Apparently the fair was in town and along with the fair came a parade.  It was the very beginning of the parade so we parked out bikes (the road was blocked anyway) and sood on the curb to watch.  Here's where the universe's sense of humor came into play.  I told the hubby that morning about my decision.  He supported me - he always does.  So - back to the parade.  It's been a very long time since I've been to a parade and I had forgotten one essential detail.  No - not the clowns.  I like clowns and clowns are still allowed in my life.  I forgot the VOLUMES of candy they throw at you. 
Seriously Universe?  Candy?  Today.  Day 1.  And I'm getting pelted by tootsie rolls, skittles, M&M's, you name it.  All my favorites were there in snack size packs. 

I didn't eat a single one.  Oh - I wanted to.  I really really really wanted to.  But I didn't.  *sigh*  This isn't going to be easy...but eventually - if it's like diet coke for me - it will get easier.  so I'm going to hang in there knowing that. 

Tonight I told my kids what I had given up.  My daughter supported me and my son laughed at me.  I'll show him AND the universe. 

Today I started running again.  4 miles in 53 or so minutes.  The first mile is the hardest.  My brain is telling me how stupid I am and my legs throw in their 2 cents and it's a rather convincing argument that I have to fight through.  But I can do this.  I'm tired of strugging all the time.  I just need to do it.  I know how.  I have the tools. 

I haven't made my workout schedule yet - I have to get input from the kids on when their sports are and work around that - meanwhile I'll run every night.  I promise!

anyway - that's it for my weekend, I'll do a weigh in tomorrow morning for my official "begin again"
Until then!!


Thursday, August 5, 2010

finding my focus

Ok - now that the medical/emotional stuff is "over" and out there...I'm working on finding my focus again. Healthy eating, smart choices, and exercise.  #1 & #2 are coming along nicely (save for the animal crackers I'm about to eat) but I've been grocery shopping and I've got food to cook at home instead of random spontaneous choices that usually end up bad for me. 

Exercise it the weak point right now.  It's gorgeous out - I'm physically able to work out - I've got more time than usual due to kids' schedule being very open right now.  And yet I find myself sitting on teh computer or watching a movie (or both).  I've got a race coming up - but Sept. 18 seems so far off and I can "start tomorrow".  I know what worked before - making a calander, putting it on the fridge, and sticking to it like a job.  So why haven't I done that?!  Hmmm...I don't know.

I also need to make a calander for hubby - he wants to start working out, he's gained some weight and is wanting to just get his general health back in line.  Usually I'm really on top of getting things done for other people but I haven't made HIS calander yet either!! 

So - I say to you all now - I will do it tonight.  2 calanders - his & hers.  And the working out will start tomorrow (we will go for a walk tonight but I don't count that as "exercise" per se, just more as together time, I love hanging out and chatting with my hubby!!). 

Thanks to everyone for the comments and good wishes on my last post.  I'm sorry to everyone else who's gone through this, once, twice, or more. It's not completely out of my mind but it sure did help to write it all out.  I've been less focused on it and able to start thinking and planning for the future - you know, the one where I have 2 teenagers getting ready to move out of the house, some money in savings, and a map of the US with great motorcycle roads highlighted and waiting to be ridden!  I'm still sad and I still think about the possibilities and a small part of my brain is still shopping for tiny socks and composing nanny questionaires...but I'm working through it. 

Quick question - something I've been pondering for awhile now.  I obviously have a problem with food - but one of my biggest issues is candy.  Not that I love love love it - but that I eat eat eat it.  So, if you have foods that are especially hard for you to deal with from a compulsive point of view, do you go completely without or have you found a way to set limitations? 

I'm thinking that I need to go without.  But crimeny - it's a tough pill to swallow.  I did it before:  I haven't had caffeine for 6.5 years now.  Only what's in chocolate, nothing in beverage form.  And I did it cold turkey.  I can't remember if it was hard - it must have been.  I had a 4 liter a day Diet coke habit.  And I stopped.  And haven't had a sip since then.  Now if I had only written down my method, I could repeat it and never have candy again - what a dream that would be!!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Medical Mystery explained - not very weightloss related and LOOONG!

Let me start by saying I’m fine – healthy both physically and emotionally - drained in both senses, but fine. Let me also say that I’m not dramatic by nature – I’m not writing this blog for attention or pity or…I don’t even know. I write in hopes of reaching out to other people going through similar things. I write to quiet the voices that bounce around in my head. I write to be able and record my life and look back at where I’ve been. And it’s my hope to help other people by my own successes and failures.

Today’s blog isn’t weight loss related. But it is about me. This, ultimately, is what this blog is about.

Nearly a month ago, I got some great news. We were expecting. We hadn’t been trying per se, but we hadn’t been preventing either. We shouldn’t have been surprised; we’re such a great team at everything else in life that we should have been more prepared. But it did take us both by surprise. I can’t speak for my husband’s emotions – so I won’t. I can say that I was excited. I had been on the fence previously. That is, I have 2 teenagers who keep my busy and a financial planner who says that I’m 18 years away from a very comfortable retirement. But one evening, doing the math, I figured I was late by a few days. I told my husband what I suspected and we headed out to buy a test. I let him look at it first. When he showed it to me, I leapt decidedly OFF the fence and right into “I’m going to be a MOM again” land. I was apprehensive though. I’m older – 41, nearly 42. I’m finally finically comfortable. I’ve got a great job. My husband’s company is slow right now. So while there’s never the perfect time to have a baby, my brain went to all the ways to make all of that work.

About a week or so after the test, I started spotting. Just a little. Nothing much. But I think I knew. And it got worse but never horrible.  I was in limbo and a little bit of denial.  I’ll skip the details but it was confirmed yesterday that I did miscarry. And we’ve decided that we won’t be trying again – ever. Between the stress of finding out, the stress of not knowing what was going on with my body, the emotions that flooded my body and brain during this entire process – it’s been quite a ride. Not one I ever want to take again.

Part of me feels relief – no middle of the night feedings, diaper changing, cold meals, spit up rags, tantrums, figuring out day care, preschools, schools, homework, vacations, budgeting, etc. And part of me feels utter grief (that word just isn't enough sometimes)– no middle of the night feedings, diaper changing, cold meals, spit up rags, tantrums, figuring out day care, preschools, schools, homework, vacations, budgeting, etc.

I didn’t know how much I wanted this baby until my husband showed me the test. And I didn’t know how much it hurt to lose a baby I wanted so much for reasons I will never know. I’ve cried more over the last 3 weeks than I’ve cried in my entire lifetime combined. Wracking sobs in the shower every morning. The bleeding has stopped, when do the tears stop? And people have noticed. I’m a cheery person by nature…usually the one causing laughter in the room, finding the bright side of everything. But not lately.

And I haven’t told many people. How do you tell them? How do I explain what happened without sounding dramatic? I’m not looking for sympathy, I don’t want people to feel put on the spot for finding the exact right thing to say to comfort me, I don’t even know the words to use to tell them. It’s awkward.

Timing wise it’s been convenient – my dog died yesterday. (a blog for another time). He was part of our family for 6.5 years. And it was sudden. Cancer they think. But I got caught crying at work. It was after the phone call from my doctor. But it was easier to say my dog was sick. And later, when I couldn’t control my sobbing, I was in an empty office when a co-worker came to check on me. What a mess I was. It was easier to only explain a portion of my grief – my dog had indeed died. And that was all I said. I didn’t say that I lost a child as well. That I lost a dream. That my tears were for so many things lost in a matter of minutes. I miss our dog. But we can get another and grow just as attached. The rest is just gone forever.

So – stress. Hormones. Eating. Sleeping poorly. Not exercising (save for a 10k on 7/4/10 and then an 8k this weekend which I’ll write up in a cheerier post tomorrow). It’s been my July. My weight has been relatively stable telling me that while I feel like the tidal wave of old habits has flooded my life may merely be a smaller surfing wave, I still feel like a failure.

But I know what I need to do – and I have a triathlon in September to train for. And I have 2 teenagers, one husband, and a remaining dog that need me. And my husband’s on board. He wants to get in better shape, for himself and to support me. So I’ll begin again. Because, well, just because that’s what I do.

If you’ve made it through this epic blog, thank you. I am not putting this out there for sympathy or pity or drama or…fill in the blank. I’m just putting it out there because my brain is crowded and I need some room. I’ve got calories to count and that my friend takes LOTS of room in my brain.

Let me add as well – to my friends who know me in real life – I haven’t brought this up to you because I don’t know how. If it’s something you want to talk about, feel free to bring it up. I’m open. And you won’t say the wrong thing, I know it all comes from a caring place. I DO want to talk about it – I’m just not sure how. Hugs are always accepted.