Wednesday, September 29, 2010

guilt, pants, and kids - my day

So - first things first.  I have a confession.  *deep breath*  I binged.  I really wish I had someone to call when I was going through it - I felt it happening and more than anything I wanted someone to tell me to stop.  I could have called my husband - but as much as he loves me, he doesn't quite "get" it. 
Here's what happened, in the hopes that  can interrupt it myself next time....

I've been feeling poorly lately - sick, tired, downright grumpy.  Not sure why <----excuse #1
I had a bad day at work and left early <-----  excuse #2
I was hungry <----- excuse #3

and I fell back on old habits.  I stopped by the grocery store intending to buy a soda and be on my merry way.  On the way in, my inner dialog determined that I was hungry and that dinner was long enough away that a snack was warranted.  I went down my list - no candy, no chips.  Ok.  Fine, I'm getting used to that.  But then my brain wanted cookies.  Something sweet.  Old habits die hard.  The inner voices listed off the excuses and I went to find a snack pack of cookies - something single serve.   The rational side of me preached moderation.  But there's not a lot of single serve packages in the grocery store (sure - there are boxes of single serve but that's not the same). 

So I bought a full size box of oreos.  Double stuff.  Go big or go home. 

I didn't even have the key in the ignition in the car before I opened the package for the first bite.  Guilt.  Lots and lots of guilt.  Pushed back down with more cookies.  I argued with myself - feel it on your tongue, taste it - is this what you WANT??  I couldn't hear the answer for the crunchy of the next cookie.  And the one after.  And the one after.  Driving along to pick up my son, I was eating my way through a box of Oreos.  Wanting to throw the box out the window and at the same time feeling so completely out of control. 

It's been awhile since I've had a binge ("forgive me father for I have sinned"...).  The feelings of guilt however - just like it was yesterday, apparently the brain doesn't forget how to do THAT!  Along with the guilt came the intense ill feeling.  It's been a long time since I've eaten that quantity of sugar and fat!  I was physically ill.   I managed to stop after most of the first row.  The rest are sitting in the car - I'm struggling with what to do with them.  I'll probably toss them in the trash on my way to work tomorrow.  I ate a healthy dinner like the binge never happened.  Pretending to myself and my family like it never happened.  But it did.  And I'll go forward from here.  But I need to document what happened.  For myself - for everyone else out there who walks this same fine line.  Control vs. out of control - it's one decision, one false step, it's so much EASIER!  Argh. 

Which leads me to kids.  We had a discussion tonight with my son.  Who thinks he different than anyone else out there - just like every other teenager he thinks he's alone and unique and nobody could possibly understand.  During our dinner conversation, we asked him what his goals were.  He has none.  Not one.  He has no idea what he'd like to do in life - and I don't mean just college/career - he didn't have an answer to "do you want to live in a big house or drive a nice car..."  He's willing to just go with the tide, take the easy road, end up where ever that takes him.  It drives me nuts.  He's always favored the easy road, doing the minimum required - and the frustrating part is that he's a highly gifted kid.  I remind him often that God gave him a race car for a brain and he's driving 20mph down the road with it.  Wasting all that God gave him!  Frustrating to say the least.

Which leads me to the pants part of my day.  At least I hope it's a pant problem.  Maybe it's a body issue.  When I put on my pants this morning, as usual I had to wiggle a little to get them up where they go - not a lot, not laying on the bed to zip them wiggle - just a little snug in the thighs kind of wiggle.  It gives me hesitation every time - I'm flooded with insecurity over it.  But - here's the weird part - by mid morning, my pants are swimming on my.  Pants on the ground too big.  I can take them down to go to the bathroom without unzipping them.  Does this happen to anyone else?  Is it just me?  I think it's the pants - because the idea that I wake up swollen in the morning just sounds ludicrious to's easier to imagine that I own the pants from the Ya Ya Sisterhood (wasn't it that movie where the jeans fit anyone who put them on?)

Ok - time to put the computer away and go for my run - 4.4 miles tonight (hubby is going to run the first 2 with me!)

Looking foward to getting that behind me and then hitting the sack - I really am exhausted. 


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Biggest Loser makes me cry

I just want to hug every single contestant...I know that it's edited to show the peaks of emotions but I can't help but imagine all the emotions every one of those contestants are going through.  They've publicly admitted they can't do it alone, they're in worse shape than they imagined (aren't we all...), and they're in for a very hard time wrapped in the guise of a reality/game show.  But at the same time it's really the opportunity of a lifetime. 

We all have our journeys to go on - 10 pounds or 400.  Food issues, body image issues, emotional issues, so much that's gone before today.  It all adds up to who we are.  But our journey is at our pace.  Stop and start - sprints and jogging - whatever we're comfortable with at the time.  But all of the Biggest Loser contestant have to be honest and open with their emotions - being dragged out of them at times.  But none of it is at their pace.  Rarely are they within their comfort level, especially physically.  Sometimes I envy them.  And other times you couldn't pay me enough to be in their shoes. 

From the competitive point of view - sign me up.  I'm all for good competition.  But day in and day out surrounded by anything and everything that is weight and food related.  I worry how these people get re-integrated back into normal life.  I see a lot of them gained weight back (how many of us are familiar with THAT). 

But that leads to what I've been discovering recently.  That it's not just words when I say that I have to do this for the rest of my life.  They need to be taught what they can sustain.  Can they fit 8+ hours in the gym into a normal life?  8+ hours?  Hell, I can barely fit 1 hour into most days (although I'm trying to!).  Can they afford the whole organic foods they're offered at the ranch?  Later seasons seem to include more nutrition and cooking info than earlier seasons (the show is learning too it seems).  

I don't know where I"m going with all this.  I'm thrilled that a small percentage of the people who need - and ask for - help are getting it.  At the same time I wish this were available for everyone.  Instead the obese re preyed upon - how many "diets" have you tried?  How many dollars have you spent?  How many days/weeks/months....all without learning how to live the life at a healthy weight. 

I'm struggling with my food lately.  I'm hungry frequently - what's up with that?  And my scale is broken which is frustrating (but maybe a good thing) and my tri training started yesterday so I ran 3.4 miles last night, swam 1.12 miles tonight and have to hop on the stationary bike tonight for an hour (distance will be unknown...) .  But is it sustainable?  I know that I'm jumping in 2 feet with the training - and while I can keep up some form of exercise, even running *eek*, I'm struggling with the idea of ALWAYS doing it.   I want to like it - I dream of the day I look forward to running (the mere thought of that seems so foreign to me). 

anyway - enough rambling.  It's time to finish dinner, watch more Biggest Loser, then spend an hour on the bike. 

Tomorrow:  Pictures! 


Monday, September 27, 2010

someone's very disappointed....

I really should stay away from the 'stat' button on my Blogger dashboard...but this one cracked me up.  someone found my blog via a Google search.  weight loss, diets, size 12 - those have been searches in the past.  There was even one about speedos that came to my blog (ya, I'm sure they were disappointed too...)

But this one takes the cake and has me cracking up.  Someone found my blog for searching for:

Sexy Motorcycle Model

BAHAHAHAHAHAH...sorry folks.  I do ride a husband thinks I'm sexy...and I have posed for pictures which technically makes me a "model" by definition, right?  But I don't think that I'm what someone had in mind when they used those search terms. 

Oh well.  maybe someday! 

Off to go running - 3.2 miles tonight.  I was waiting for hubby to get home but I haven't heard from him, he's hard at work, so I've got to go get these miles under my belt. 


Monday check in...and wow what a weekend!

Let me first start by saying that truly - in my life, even with struggles, I'm blessed. With friends, family, and opportunities.

Saturday was an annual motorcycle ride with a great group of friends. 10 of us headed at warp speed up to Winthrop, WA - a 130 mile one way trip on excellent roads. We made it in *ahem* really good time with little to no traffic, no mishaps, and perfect weather. Riding really does bring me back to center, reminds me of all the things that are good in life, and generally leaves me smiling. The day ended with an oyster BBQ at a friend's house...and boy oh boy does he BBQ a mean oyster - I'm drooling just thinking about it! My victory of the day was at the BBQ - like so many other BBQ's - there were chips. Ruffled ones even! My (former *sigh*) favorites. But I didn't eat one. I thought about it, schemed, rationalized, even contemplated cheating and starting the count over on the chip exclusion count. But I didn't.

You read that right. I didn't eat a single chip. Not the ones offered as a started at lunch OR the copious (and ruffled!) ones at dinner. And for that - I'm proud!!

It's been nearly one month without chips. And nearly 2 months without candy. I was staring at candy today. Wanting some. Really wanting some. But I tried to remember what I liked about candy. Was it the texture, the flavor, the smell? What was it exactly. It wasn't anything that had to do with actually eating it. It was more of a reward system - or sometimes a punishment. It represented something other than food with me. It was a habit. A comfort. A way to represent emotions: sad, angry, tired, frustrated, happy, celebrating...

But I don't miss it. I mean I still WANT it...I think about it...especially when they introduce "new" candy (snickers has a new one...I was tempted) but not for any reason I can put my finger on. I've decided it was merely a habit. An addiction. Without thought. Without reason really.

So here's to 2 months no candy...and many more.

Chips are another story - I love the salty taste - I love the crunchy feel - I still remember WHY I ate chips. I LIKE them. No - I LOVE them. If someone made me choose chips or oxygen - I would have to think about it. But it's been almost a month. And I still want them. I still try and rationalize why I can - should! - have them. I'm eating a sandwich for lunch - chips just GO with a sandwich, right? And they're crunchy and salty and tasty.

But - like candy - I can't moderate them long term. Key is long term. Short term I did ok. 6 months I pulled it off. Several times. Each time I've tried to lose weight, I can modify my diet for 4-6 months, lose some weight - and then I start slipping.

Candy and chips are gateway foods for me. So they're eliminated.

Next is refined sugar - probably not in it's entirety but no treat like foods that have sugar - ice cream, cookies, etc. I'll have to keep my eye on where I do get sugar from and decide from there. I do eat instant oatmeal every morning with sugar in it - I'm not sure I want to give that up but I might. I haven't decided - has anyone else done this?

I'm also not sure of what else I need to eliminate - probably processed foods (which I don't eat much of) and then I'll continue to work on portion control and daily nutrition.

In my world of working out etc - today starts my triathlon training plan. I want to do a "big" race next year - either several Olympic distance tris or an actual half ironman. The idea of a half ironman is intimidating - I have a post it on my monitor with the distances listed - I just stare at it and think one of two things: either "are you nucking futs? That's a lot of work!!" or "wouldn't it be cool if you did it just once..."

so for the next 16 weeks, I'll be training for Olympic distance triathlon (that's on a post it note here too - visual reminder of my goals). I downloaded a training plan and am ready to start tonight!!

here's my plan:

it's a lot. I know. But I don't take small steps.

I have some goals for the next period of time - some small, some big - but this post is long enough so I'll save it for tomorrow's blog!!


Friday, September 24, 2010

Yet another benefit of losing weight...

not all my aches and pains are due to weight.  When my back hurts, it's because I've been OVER active...not because i'm overWEIGHT. 

my active weekend has left me in pain - not injury, not chronic ache - but "oh boy, you've got MUSCLES" kind of ache. 

I'm off to take a tylenol and then head out golfing - I've never golfed before - wish me luck!


Thursday, September 23, 2010

things I can do now that I couldn't do at 300+ pounds

I wish I could find the list of things I dreamed of doing when I first considered Gastric Bypass.  I'm sure it contained some of the "usual" ones:  cross my legs, fit comfortably at the movies/airplane/behind the steering wheel, get up off the floor gracefully, walk a flight of stairs without stopping, play with my kids, swing in a swing, and a few others I've since forgotten. 

What I didn't realize is all the OTHER things I would be able to do.  This line of thinking is prompted by my husband's question to me tonight.  He asked "how's the blog going - did you tell them about riding motorcycles for 2 full days?!" and then he asked "do you talk about the things you do on a regular basis that you couldn't have done at 300 pounds??"

The answer was no.  I haven't been 300 pounds in about 9 years.  But recently I was 240 pounds.  January.  240 pounds.  It wasn't as bad as 300 - but it wasn't good either. 

So here's my list.  Of things I can do now that I couldn't do at 300 or even 240 pounds:

  • Take a 2 day physically demanding motorcycle class
  • cross my legs - anywhere anytime
  • fit in every chair
  • run
  • run far
  • run long distance
  • sign up for a boot camp without worrying about being embarassed
  • go golfing with work
  • shop without trying clothes on
  • look in a full length mirror and find parts of my body that I can't stop staring at
  • and touching those parts of my body (oh - not that you dirty birds!)
  • believing my husband when he tells me I look hot
  • wearing form fitting clothes
  • bicycling
  • swimming
  • running
  • events with all 3!!
  • racing motorcycles
  • safety gear for motorcycling
  • folding my legs under me in the movie theater
  • lap top ON my lap
  • sexy underclothes NOT from Lane Bryant (while they look sexy, the amount of material involved cancelled sexy out for me)
  • hand me downs from people I admire
  • borrowing clothes when the weather turns unexpectedly
  • jeans that I can wear out of the dryer Every. Single.  Time.
  • Looking forward to doctor appointments instead of dreading "The Lecture"
  • confidence and self esteem

what things do you enjoy at the weight you are now?  What are you looking forward to?  I'm certainly enjoying life to a level I really never dreamed of at 300 pounds.  I'm looking forward to running farther and faster, discovering a whole new list of new things I can do, not letting my weight hold me back from ANYTHING.  That's what I'm looking forward to.  Life is full of hope. 


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

what a great vacation!

I'm BAAACK!  5 days away - it's our first vacation this year.  And boy was it packed with excitement!  Saturday was the trialthon - that deserves a post of it's own.  I came in fourth in my division with a lot of room for improvement for next year!  But I was happy with my results. 
Saturday night was a wedding - in the pouring rain.  I mean BUCKETS!  Being from Seattle you say "but you're used to rain..."  No.  We're used to drizzle.  This was Rain.  There were tents to protect us but at the top of the hill (which would have been beautiful in decent weather) it was pouring, windy, and cold.  The wedding kept us distracted - it was amazing.  I danced a little with the husband - who doesn't dance so I was thrilled when he joined me on the dance floor!  Then back to the hotel in the driving rain.
Sunday and Monday were motorcycle class - learning motocross racing is hard friggin work!  I sweated and worked my butt off.  The fun part all weekend has been discovering new muscles - and I don't just mean by how sore they are.  I mean I can SEE them!!  My calves - well, I'll have to take a picture.  My thighs, my shoulders - they're all becoming more defined. 

I spent the weekend - all 5 days - working hard and eating right.  I had a mini-goal of coming back with 2 more pounds gone and reaching my half way point.  But no.  The scale hates me - I'm back up to 202.  Muscles, right?  It's muscles.  *eye roll*  It might very well BE muscles but I worked hard and wanted to see a 2 pound loss.  oh well.  I'll get over it.  And it might just be dehydration/muscles/vacation *um* I'll give it a week to settle in.  Maybe on Monday I'll be back down. 

Meanwhile, it was really awesome - I stayed on track, no binges, healthy food, good portions, even eating out every meal.  If I focus on that - which I'm trying to do - then the weight gain is minor.  The success is in staying under control in out of control situations. 

Stay tuned for my triathlon report!


Saturday, September 18, 2010

Drive by blogging

Triathlon in the bag!! Finished, little disappointed in my bike portion but overall happy!! Bottom line: more bike riding over the winter and continue the running and swimming.

Today's effort got me fourth place in my division! I'm going to be frustrated if third place was mere minutes ahead if me. But fourth place baby!!
Next up: wedding in Portland tonight and then 2 days of motorcycle racing camp!

In store for October: boot camp and getting this body in shape! I'm excited. And hopeful. And smiling.


Friday, September 17, 2010


not feeling well (still have a nasty cough), home alone, and stress.  The Perfect Storm.  But it's nearly dinner time and still no binge.  I didn't plan out meals for today so it was that much more of a struggle when you add actual hunger to the equation.  But I'm making it.  The day's not over.  But I'm through the worst of it.  I wanted more than anything to dive into a giant bag of chips - who would know?  I was alone, hungry, stressed, have a cold, have a race tomorrow - all the "reasons" I needed in the past.  Today I made it through with healthy choices.  A PB&J on sandwich thin, a pear, a granola bar.  No chips.  No candy.  Tonight's meal is pasta - carb loading for tomorrow's triathalon (#82 in the house!! *huZZah*).

I'm proud of myself for pushing through.  Minute by minute, hour by hour.  But it's hard.  There's no doubt about it.  It's still hard.  And it might always be. 

I'm off in the morning for a long weekend away.  I intended to post up in advance but didn't get around to it today - so that's going to have to wait.  I'll have my laptop with me, it will be a matter of finding time to blog!  I will post race results tomorrow as soon as I can! 

Until then!


Thursday, September 16, 2010

back from the brink of death...

well, not death.  But a cold that knocked me flat for 2.5 days.  Started with a scratchy throat - oh, who am I kidding, nobody wants the run down.  I was sick enough to stay home from work.  Nuff Said. 

How it relates to weight loss - Yesterday morning my scale may have read 196.6 - but I thought it might be the meds and a mild hallucination.  This morning however, it read 197.4.  I'm almost half way to my goal!  195 is half way - 45 down, 45 to go.  I want to be on the downhill side of all of this!!

I was describing to a friend today how eliminating some foods is working for me.  It's been more than just eliminating that source of calories - it's been more than preventing binge triggers.  It's made me thoughtful.  Eating has been like a reflex for me.  It should be a reflex for hunger but somewhere along the way it became a reflex for everything.  Sad - eat.  Happy - eat.  Tired, bored, frustrated - eat.  And it's been easy - like a drunk who knows all the bars on the way home, I know where to get a quick snack.  Quickie Mart, Gas Station, corner drug store (ironic).  But now that most of my "go-to" food are off limits, the reflex has been interrupted. 

Before it went like this:  *emotion* - *food*

Now it goes like this:  *emotion* - *which food if not chips or candy*  - *what IS this emotion anyway* - *maybe I'm not hungry* - *moving right along*

No food in the second equation.  Unless the *emotion* is truly hunger in which case the rest of it goes to figuring how how long until my next actual meal and what's healthy and available that will carry me through until then. 

Interrupting that usual chain of action has been the biggest part of all of this.  I'm thinking before I eat.  That's new.  Very new.  Even when I'm eating in moderation, I did a lot of mindless eating.  I logged it all, stayed under my calories, but it was too easy to let it get out of control. 

It's only been 6 weeks since I cut candy out.  And only 2 weeks since chips are gone.  But I really feel like I can sustain this.   There's not a finish line.  There's no buffet at the end (how many times do I picture my "reward" meal for the day I reach my weight goal - anyone else do this?  when I'm "skinny" I can eat as much *fill in the blank* as I want).  The reality is that this is it.  This is how I will be eating the rest of my life.  At 200, at 180, and at 150 when I finally get there. 

I still struggle.  Don't read this as I've reached nirvana and I'm just going to cruise to 150.  That's not true.  I struggle.  At every meal.  At every twang of emotion when the reflex to eat springs up.  The last 2 days I was really sick (just a cold but WOW).   I was home alone.  That's a huge trigger for me.  Secret eating.  Nobody will find out.  And while I did stop at the drug store for some more Kleenex and some sinus meds - I was surrounded by the usual foods that "made me feel better".  Only now they were off limits.  And I left without ANY of them.  More success than struggles. 

This feels sustainable.  After so many tries.  After so many paths.  After so much loss - then gain - then loss - then gain.  This feels....different. 

So I'll keep it up.  And hopefully when my sinuses clear - this still makes sense ;)


PS.  Saturday is my triathlon!!  let's hope I can breathe normally by then or else it's going to be a colossal struggle!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Monday and I'm smiling??

What's wrong with this picture?  Well, I'm still on track...eating healthy foods, working out, finding a nice balance between keep track of what I'm eating and not obsessing about what I'm eating. 

Yesterday brought lots of food - we celebrated my son's birthday so family and friends came to teh house.  He requested mac and cheese (and I will not make that from a box!) so I served mac and cheese along with a decent salad bar and several bowls of fruit.  It was uber healthy but everyone seemed to enjoy it! 

I did have part of a piece of cake - but refined sugar hasn't been eliminated yet.  I paid dearly for it with a stomach ache later though.  Just more signs of being on the right track in my mind. 

Weight is down to 198 but it seems so much less important these days.  Just making it through a day without the foods I'm eliminated seems like a win to me.  The shift in thinking has been interesting.  Mind boggling actually. 

I had a great weekend though - raced motorcycles on Saturday morning, watching motorcycle racing (Endurocross) Saturday night, son's party on Sunday and then watched a couple movies and just chilled last night.  It was a great weekend.

Coming up next weekend however is:  Kirkland Triathalon on Saturday, then a mad dash for Portland for my cousin's wedding, then we're doing a racing camp for motorcycles on Sunday and Monday and Tuesday will be a hang out/recovery day.  5 days packed with fun!!  I will probably have finished my "What they don't tell you about Gastric Bypass" by then and post that up in my absence...

I'm so excited for the future these days - and that my friends is the best news ever!!


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

scheduling exercise

I find - and I think a lot of people are like this - that if I schedule exercise, I'm more likely to do it.  Just "getting to the gym every day" isn't good enough.  Signing up for a class or a group - that will keep me moving.  For my marathon training, I wrote out 15 weeks of running - and held myself accountable.  But since then - and that was JUNE - I've been horrible at going out and moving.  I've done a few races and with a triathlon right around the corner, I've been more dilligent about getting in the pool and getting on the bike.  I sucked at the swim in my last race and the negative voices that told I me should have trained more were right.  I really want to try and avoid that for the next race. 

But what then?  I won't have a race until December - and left to my own device, I'll play mafia wars until then and then beat myself up for lack of planning.  So today I signed up for  6 week unlimited boot camp.  Oy vey.  It's early in the morning and I'll have to adjust my work schedule slightly to make it work.  But I CAN make it work - and it's near my house - and it's unlimited for 6 weeks!  It was only $40 for that period of time - so my frugal side voted "yes".  Hopefully I love it only enough for 6 weeks of working out - because it's really expensive otherwise (like car payment every month expensive!!)

And I won't start until October or so...maybe I can time it to finish it around Christmas time and make a goal of losing 15 pounds in 6 weeks (unlimted boot camp should be good for an average of 2+ pounds a week maybe?).  If I can lose 5 by then (in 3 weeks or so) then I'll see 180 by Christmas.  It seems reasonable.  Lofty goal but I think it's do-able. 

Ok - so it's decided - 180 by Christmas.  That's my goal.  We're going away for Christmas this year - we're due for a family get away and leaving the holiday stress behind is something we've threatened every year for a long time. 

I'm kind of excited for boot camp - it's a plan.  And I love plans.  I live for plans. 

On that note - this week's menu planning has gone very well.  Including left overs for lunches - and no buying lunches!  Healthy AND frugal - score!!  And it's so much easier with school back in and kids and hubby working late - when someone sks "what's for dinner - I have an answer!!  And I can relax during my commute, head directly to the pool for my 1/2 mile swim, and then home where whoever gets there first knows to get dinner started. 

I feel so organized on all fronts!!  And committed to more blogging...I like Drazil's idea of daily 'themes' - keeps things  a little organized (yay!).  Now I'll have to think of themes....ideas? 
I need to have a picture day - it's time to update.  And maybe a weekly goal and check in on longer goals?  Race reports/exercise wrap up, a day of new receipes (that would be more for me than anyone!!  I've been in a cooking rut...).  Any other cool ideas? 

In other news - I have a lengthy article to post soon - this weekend maybe.  "What nobody tells you about Gastric Bypass"  It will probably have to be in several parts (maybe that will be a weekly installment?)

Until tomorrow!!


PS.  can someone help me with creating a cool signature?  I see them on other blogs and have design-envy!

Monday, September 6, 2010

more on moderation vs. elimination...

I was replying to a comment on my original post - and I had a small epiphany:  The elimination has been hard.  Harder than moderation.  Going without vs. trying to moderate has been a lot harder for me.  But I'm doing it.  And I'm concentrating on one event at a time.  It automatically breaks it down for me and I have daily successes.  Grocery shopping - no chips or candy.  Drive by the convinience store - don't stop.  There are bittersweet chocolate chips in my cupboard for cookies (eventually) - they're all still there.....

I still have to have little pep talks to get through each moment of struggle.  But it's getting easier.  At least sometimes.  There are some days where I really just want to bag it.  Candy's on sale...chips are cheap (and SO yummy!).  But then I remember my progress.  And that I'm accountable.  To you guys (thank you!) and to my husband (my biggest supporter!) and my kids (my biggest doubters). 

*The epiphany*
Because this is such a struggle for me (as my husband sits across the desk from my with a fresh bag of tortilla chips!!), I think it's actually working.  The fact that it's SUCH a draw for me and such a daily struggle tells me I'm on the right course.  The fact that it's so hard (right now) is a major clue into what the issue is.  And I really feel like this is sustainable.  There's no candy and chips (and later refined sugar and artificial sweetner and then who knows) on the food pyramid, it's not required in a healthy diet.

That epiphany makes me feel like I'm on the right track.  And, for once, and this is a biggie: The scale is NOT my focus.  I'm certainly keeping an eye on it and you bet your booty that I'm dancing in the bathroom when it shows a loss - but the other morning it showed a FIVE pound gain overnight.  And I shrugged and put the scale back where it came from.  I was confident it was a fluke.  And it didn't freak me out - I've been successful in avoiding the foods I've eliminated.  And that feels awesome. 

Back to enjoying my last hours of a long weekend!!


scale is dropping...and other rainy day ramblings

Today's weigh in was 200.8 - felt so good not to see 202 on there - it's been a very long time!  Maybe the eliminating is working...

This weekend has been full of working - not the "paycheck" kind of work, but yard work, house work, computer work.  The yard is closer to civilized - it was a jungle.  The house is closer to clean (I hate cleaning the house!!) and there is a calander on the fridge with this week's meals posted.  There's even matching inventory in the fridge to go with that menu!! 

I love 3 day weekends - this one was actually 3.5 days.  Oh how I wish I could do this every weekend - between the 2+ hour commute a day and 40 hours a week of work - there just aren't enough hours in a week to get everything done.  My to-do list is getting shorter but it's still nothing less than several pages long.  I need to paint the walls, I need to organize pictures, there's so much that I WANT to get done. 

The upside of working so hard at home is that I practically forget to eat.  Ok - there is that slice of "just out of the oven" bread that I'll NEVER forget but otherwise I can lose track of time.  At work, I'm constantly watching the clock - 7:30 breakfast, 10am snack, 12 is lunch of course, 2:30 or so is snack, and then usually head home for a 7pm dinner.  My day is marked off not by hour but by meals.  At home, it's different.  Snacks are "oh - I'm hungry but busy" but not time dependant.  I prefer the spontaneous method - but it's not practical at work.  I'm too bored usually (until work gets busier at least - thank you economy). 

Anyway - I'm off to the movies...after a stop by the grocery store for baby carrots.  I struggled all weekend with "is popcorn off limits" question.  I've gone back and forth.  But because of the struggle, I figured that it is off limits:  it falls easily into the chips/crunchy snack category that I've eliminated.  So baby carrots will be my "munch while I watch" snack (as I annoy the entire theater even while I try to be quiet!)

I found another entrant for the Kirkland Triathalon that I'm doing on the 18th - he's a new client at my husband's shop (he's having a Chevelle restored!).  He's also physically VERY in shape - special ops forces - and I'm certain he'll do very well in the race.  Meanwhile, I'll keep pluggin along, hopefully nothing worse than mid-pack.

Which reminds me, I'd better get a training plan on the schedule for these last few days before the race!


Saturday, September 4, 2010

Today marks one month - and paying attention

It's been one month already - no, not that...but no candy!!  That's right - no so much as a dinner mint.  There's still been some sweets, but really I'm not that big of a sweets fan - the candy was more habit and easy to grab than anything. It's still habit - I still struggle a little with wanted to grab it first - when I'm at the gas station, when I'm hungry, sad, angry, frustrated.  Somehow my brain still thinks candy makes it ok. 

But I'm abstaining.  And it's been one month.

And I've been without chips for...let me count ( embarassing is that?!), well, not even a week (why does it feel like so much longer?!).  I had one night at dinner that without thinking I ate some tortilla chips (Mexican restaurant) - but that just reinforced the fact that this is all about breaking HABITS. 

It's funny how much of our day we spend doing things without thinking about it - for some it's their jobs, for some it's driving, for some it's eating.  For me it's a lot of that.  And more...I spend a good portion of my day just shut off...or thinking about the next thing I'm supposed to be doing or the next place I'm supposed to be, or the next person I'm supposed to help.  Trying to stay one step ahead.  But that leads to not being present.  Not being THERE when I'm talking to my family, driving in the car (can they outlaw driving and daydreaming?), or eating.  I do a lot of that without paying attention.  It's dangerous - to my relationships, to my driving, to my health. 

I have to start PAYING ATTENTION

That's the bottom line. 

I'll leave you all to ponder how much of your day you actually pay attention to....


Thursday, September 2, 2010

evening of successes continued...

Part 1 here

so I set off on the run - knowing I had 3 laps to complete the entire event.  But with voices in my head - dialog I mean - telling me I could stop at either of the first 2 laps and call it done.

Lap one - I was still surrounded by plenty of runners.  Including the speedo-clad high school water polo team.  As the runners passed in front of me I noticed, in this order, shoulders *dreamy sigh*, muscular backs, tapered waists, speedo covered butts...and their ages marked on their calves.  14, 15, 17...Holy cow, I'm going to jail.  My SON is 14 almost 15.  When did I get so old (and lecherous?!). 

Back to the running...

The loop starts out uphill, then goes uphill more.  Oh boy.  Then it does a rolling downhill (which in my brain I saw it as "uphill on the way back, enjoy it while you can!"), then flat for an out and back loop.  There's a Y in the course with 2 volunteers pointing out which direction to go - all runners headed OUT go to the right, coming back you either go to the left and retrace (laps 1 & 2) or straight for the long course lap 3.  Bear with me, I'm not going to try and make you draw a map *grin*

So I bear right, do the turn around and back at the Y the volunteers ask me which lap as that determines left or straight.  I say lap 1 (most people are on lap 2 at least by now) and follow the path left.  I head UP the hill (the one I knew was coming) and had to walk a portion of it.  My legs were still protesting the swim.  They might never forgive me...only time will tell.

The transition/finish area was still packed on lap 1 - I caught my husband's eye and grinned for the official photographer.  I headed off on lap 2, still negotiating with the voices/dialog about just how many laps I would be completing.  1 down, at least 1 to go.  I knew I wanted to finish the WHOLE race.  And I just hoped they'd leave the course open for me!

It was during this lap that something strange and new happened.  I'm a heads down runner (I know I know - bad form -WHATEVER!).  I usually watch my feet as they disappear under my body over and over again.  I keep an eye on what's ahead - I've never ran into anything unexpected - but in order to keep my body running, I keep a close eye on it.  Usually I also notice all the jiggling going on from that perspective.  The girls are strapped down tight (or I'd have 2 black eyes) but the rest of me is free to fight the battle of 'gravity vs. momentum' also known as "Jiggle".  I've been pretty good at cutting myself slack - even elite athletes jiggle when they run - and I've been pretty successful at merely notices and not berating myself for the jiggle.  And it's getting better - it's noticeably better after 40 pounds gone.  But last night - a new voice spoke up.  A strong voice, a convincing voice. 

"Just LOOK at those legs - they're carrying you wherever you need to go - you demand so much from them and they perform for you - they're strong, they've capable, and you are RUNNING with them" 

I almost started crying - I'm almost crying now. It's so true.  For so many of us - heavy or not.  Our legs are wonderful and we take them for granted.  And while I've beat myself up over the size/shape/length of my legs - I'm here to tell you:  MY LEGS ARE PERFECT.  They have never let me down.  I realized this last night as I was running.  They're strong.  Under the weight I've let settle there, they're muscular.  I push them and they carry me wherever I want/need to go.  And last night was no exception. 

Lap 2 on the run back the volunteers at the Y asked me what lap - I slowed down enough to say that I was going left, I had one more lap to go and that I'd be "right back"  (by some definition of right back!).  I thanked them as they cheered me on.  Once more walking about 50% of the uphill and coming down around and back into the transition/finish area there were decidedly less people but the cheering was loud as I came down the hill - they pointed me to the finish line and I declared:  ONE MORE LAP TO right back!  and headed back up the hill for lap 3.  Voices be damned - I was going to do the WHOLE event. 

Lap 3 I headed to the out and back then finally was able to go straight at the Y for the long course added out and back.  (aren't you glad you didn't have to draw a map - the course was well marked and there was very little confusion as to where to go!).  It was nearly dark at this point and the trail was gravel but I had sure footing and ran on.  They were picking up cones as I ran and one of the volunteers ran up the final hill behind me (at least I think she did...I was concentrating SO hard on finishing at that point).  I came down and around the final portion and the transition/finish area was nearly deserted.  Organizers, volunteers, vendors - and my husband.  That was about it.  But the finish line was still up - the clock was still running - and so was I.  Across the timing mat and finishing with a time of 1hour 45min. 

The course was scheduled to be open for 1hour 40min but with the late start...well, anyway - I only missed my goal by 5 minutes.  But I'm fine with that!  I had so many other things to be grateful for - including the organizers for not giving up on me. 

1000m swim/8k run.  I can do it.  With strong legs, strong will, strong determination.  And a gratefulness to God who makes all that possible. 

No time to relax though - next race is in 16 days - Kirkland Triathlon!


PS.  The swag at the end of the race was CHOCOLATE!! And because I was last, they told me to take as much as I wanted...I took 2 boxes and brought them to work today.  They're now in the deserving hands of 2 co-workers who appreciate them!  3+ weeks of no candy and day 4 of no chips!

An evening of successes

Last night's race was full of win! Not the podium type though. No, not even close. In fact, I was the last athlete in. By a large margin. Most, if not all, had left already even! But did that bother me?? No!! I was SO proud of what I did. A few things about the race: they started late so I was already concerned about making it to the finish line before they closed the course and starting close to 30 minutes late meant I had that much less time!! I was already a nervous wreck and that didn't help...

Helping was the fact that the race was all run through a local park - the course was 2 laps around the buoys in the lake, 2 identical 1.55 mile laps and 1 more longer lap to total 1000m swim (.6 miles) and 8k run (5 miles). So I knew if there were signs that I was going to completely run out of time, I could just stop at the completion of a lap and not do the full distance.

I was still super nervous.

God bless my husband, he decided to come with and cheer me on. I was tempted to just leave at so many points before the start but he kept encouraging me in subtle ways I'm not even sure he was aware of.

We got there nice and early and I turned in my waiver and got my body markings: race number in large print on my arm and my AGE on my calf. Eeek!

We wandered about, more people arrived. The registration line was really long and the start time was rapidly approaching. I got nervous about the cut off and asked the organizer if a late start would extend the close time. They assured me it would. But it still threw me off a little. Also working against me was the fact that out of probably 300 entrants, I was one of about a dozen without a wetsuit. Errr...the water isn't that cold but I'm beginning to see the advantage. Vanity prevents me from embracing the idea. Wearing Lycra is a brave move for me. Neoprene is just one giant mental leap farther.

But I digress.

Finally they call the mandatory meeting down by the lake, announce the waves (long course men, long course women, short course men, short course women - the keep it simple method - I completely approve!)

Lined up with the long course men in front of me was a gaggle (a posse? A gang?) of men in speedos. The other non-wetsuit contingency. Except these were the local high school water polo team. When did they start making high schoolers that looked like that?! I'm certain that the number written on their calves represented the number of years I would spend in jail if I didn't stop staring at these YOUNG men. Oh lordy.

Ok - so we were sent off in our wave and I started swimming.

Not bad, the water was certainly cold but I knew I would warm up and appreciate it. And I did. My goggles on the other hand were a total pain in the butt. They filled with water right off the bat and fogged up when I emptied them. Ugh. Losing battle and morally defeating. On top of that was the fact the I was really struggling with putting my face IN the water - a requirement of swimming with ANY speed. Sigh. I was ready to give up and I hadn't even reached the first buoy.

Breast stroke it was - with my head held awkwardly out of the water. But I kept going. I was next to last getting on the beach at the first lap and checked with the volunteer if I had time for the second lap.

Remember there were TWO swim laps? My husband noted later that a great number of the long course swimmers did NOT head out for the second lap. But I did. With my no wetsuit awkward stroke. And finished it. With the safety patrol by my side "just in case you need a break" they kept telling me.

My internal dialog at this point went something like this "you know you don't have to run? You know getting a rise on the canoe wouldn't be so bad? You know you don't have to do all 3 running laps? You know that you CAN quit?"

I fought the voices, um, I mean the "inner dialog" (sounds more sane if I say it that way!). I argued with them. I Can do this. The WHOLE SWIM and i bargained that we would talk about the run later.

I hit the transition area among cheers from the volunteers as well as other athletes hanging out in there, drying off, packing up. Many of them admitted to quitting. Not doing the run portion at all. Not me. I had just swam nearly alone for my second lap, was next to last out of the water (the guy behind me dried off and headed home), and after that monumental swim effort, frankly running sounded easy.


Back up Sally! What did you just say?

Yup. Compared to the craptastic swim, I was ready to run. Me, yes me.

This was huge for me. A definite shift in thinking. I had a positive voice finally speaking up among the voices I've grown used to. I was ready - and excited - about running.

My legs on the other hand were pissed at me. WALK! They demanded. And I set off at a brisk jog, ignoring the sluggish response from my waterlogged legs.

At this point, given the repeating laps of course, I was among a constant stream of runners. It was motivating to know that they weren't aware of my "dead last" status.

*to be continued* (sorry!)


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

racing tonight...can you keep a secret?

between you and me - I'm terrified. 

I can swim.  I can run.  But there's a possiblity that the race will end before I can finish both of those!  I'm at home early just making sure I've got everything, I'll probably grab a quick nap, and then head down to the race site.  I'm so very nervous!!  I'm pretty sure I'll do fine...I just want to finish bfore they close the course...oh please let me finish before they close the course!!

Ok.  So now that it's out there...maybe I can relax and try to enjoy the rest of my day!

I'll report back tomorrow.