Some Victories….Some Defeats

Contemplation is the word and I’ve been doing some of it.  It is hard not to think about what you are doing when you are working toward changing an ingrained behavior that has been around for quite some time….um almost one’s whole life. Some day I will write about my weight struggles, maybe I will post a picture 🙂 Trust me, I have always been pleasantly plump.

As I was taking my shower today the thoughts started to roll through my head.  I have to say that the first month of my journey has been just as the title says…some victories and some defeats. I haven’t really mentioned this yet, but ironically I teach a behavior modification class.  Now…the irony behind that is that I have often used myself (and my family) for short term change and to potty train my oldest, but this is the first time I am dedicated to following through with “practicing what I preach” so to speak.

WARNING…mini lecture ahead: One of the first things I teach my students is that it is very important to collect baseline data.  Baseline data is crucial to determining where your behavior is at, numerically speaking, and it helps determine some of the influences in your environment that are contributing to the behavior that you are wanting to change. Once you start modifying your behavior you continue to document your data, then at the end of your modification you compare your baseline data to your completion data.  My students actually do this and write a paper.

So….a few things I’ve learned from my baseline data. 1) I was eating WAY too many calories, 2) I was eating so much sugar that I am surprised that I haven’t turned into a lolly pop, 3) I have a SERIOUS problem with chocolate, 4) I lead a sedentary lifestyle (even though I teach), 5) I love food and have a serious issue with mentally obsessing about it, and 6) I need to start eating breakfast.

Let’s talk a little bit about defeats.  I know that one should focus on successes and not defeats, but personally I know that if I can’t get real with myself this whole thing is going to go bust! I personally believe that if you can’t be honest with yourself and admit that what you are doing isn’t helping, then you have set your self up for failure.  This whole blog thing is about me getting honest with my mental self! I can do the physical work (i.e. exercise and eating),  but getting my head screwed on right is a whole other issue.  Let’s equate this to someone addicted to a drug.  There are many out there with the attitude that a person can stop using at any time. That is not true….talk to an addict.  That person struggles to stop and tries to stop, but until they admit they have a problem (an Alcoholics Anonymous requirement) it is difficult for them to actually stop using.  I have to admit I have a problem with food.  I am getting there!  Food has become an obsession for me rather than a means of nourishment and survival.  Food is about how wonderful it tastes.  Food should be about getting a balanced diet that keeps me in optimal shape. Hypothetical speaking, lets say my car LOVES diesel. It tastes wonderful.  However it is not what my car needs….it is what my car wants.  If I give my car diesel it will kill it. Food can’t be about what I want, it needs to be about what I need.  Currently my body wants chocolate….in mass quantities and this is my greatest defeat this month.  I caved! Yesterday was a chocolate day. NOT GOOD! My body wants carbs and yummies.  I am still eating a diet that is not nutrient rich….it is cheese and bread rich. Those are small defeats that need to be addressed at some point.

Now, before you all get into a tizzy about not addressing my successes and only focusing on the negatives.  I am actually quite proud of the fact that I am starting to gain insight. Let’s start off with my biggest success.  Coffee Creamer 🙂 Two simple words, one big impact on my life.  Well….I love the International Delights Carmel Macchiato creamer A LOT!.  However, I have discovered that I go bust on my sugar count before I get past breakfast and I don’t even eat breakfast! That creamer is so sugar laden, not to mention all of the other fun chemicals included, that it was completely annihilating the sugar grams that MFP (my fitness pal) has identified for my daily allotment. I kicked creamers but last week.  I am now drinking only one 16 ounce cup of coffee in the mornings (used to be two) and I measure out 1 tablespoon of creamer for it.  I had never measured creamer before, but I am pretty sure I was probably using about 3T per cup 😦 (1T has 5g of sugar…that would be 30g of sugar in the morning). Bye bye creamer! One other success this month…I joined a gym.  Yep, that cliched January gym membership!  However this gym has an indoor walking track. An indoor walking track is something that I have missed since leaving Kentucky (and WKU). I am actually walking about 2 miles two times per week.  That is more than I have done in the past.

Now, there are several more successes and a few more defeats, but it looks like I have already written a lot for today so I will stop now!

Enjoy!

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One…day…at..a…time!

And then the resolve dissolves!  Bad day today! I am reminded that I like food….not good food a lot of the time. I think this slip actually is the result of a realization Monday night. On my way home I was reflecting on the past month and the success I feel like I have had.  I know that I am patting myself on the back a little too soon, but I have spent more days than not this month with my eating reigned in.  Last night was like a slap on the face.  I realized that the way I’ve been eating the last month is the new way of eating. I had something of a pity party for myself on the way home from work.  I like food.  I really like food and the thought of not being able to enjoy the things I like caused a moment of regret that I have chosen this path.

I think that last nights reflections have led to today’s nose dive into food naughtiness!  I started off the day well, but crashed after lunch! Yep…two rounds of reeses pb cup mini’s after lunch.  Then I just polished off a large sum of cookies.  GRRRRR! I have been doing so good, then this.  People will say that you need to splurge every once of a while and I am sure many would have encouraging words that a one day slip isn’t the end of success….yep I know.  Thank you for the standard line.  That isn’t the issue.  I KNOW that a one day mess up isn’t going to screw me up.  That isn’t the point.  The point is that I still don’t have a handle on my impulses. That is going to take time. I can still be disappointed in my self.  I’m not going to wallow in self pity, but I know that I still need to work on things.

Today was not a success. Tomorrow will be better.

It’s my Birthday and I’ll…….

eat if I want to! Yesterday (Jan 24th) was my birthday! Just what every girl wants…to get another year older! I had been anticipating this day ever since I had my “get rid of the fat” moment early this month.  I knew this was one going to be a difficult day for me….I like cake! Since starting the whole MFP thing I have been anxiously awaiting Jan 24 and wondering how I was going to handle the caloric indiscretion that was evident. I had resolved myself to the fact that I would definitely be going over the 2100 calories that MFP says I am allowed to have, the question was how I would resolve this salacious behavior in my mind.  Now many, many years ago a man named Sigmund Freud proposed a series of defense mechanisms.  Freud said that our mind has a way of keeping us from experiencing unnecessary anxieties.  Two of these defense mechanisms are denial and rationalization…..yep, those came from that naughty guy, Freud. I digress.  So, for my birthday I could basically choose denial and pretend that I didn’t go on an eating spree of mass proportions.  Or I could utilize rationalization….it is my Birthday! I should be allowed….right? Well, there is no denying that I went over my calorie count, by way of midnight pizza, early morning donuts, and TWO, not one but two, pieces of decadent chocolate cake!

I opted to not deny what I have done……obviously I am telling all of you! One might say that I have rationalized.  It is my Birthday. But, the catch is that I am working toward accepting that I can’t rationalize every instance of indiscretion.  I can’t say…hey it is_______________ (valentines day, groundhog day, Saturday, you fill in the blank) so I can eat whatever I want.  I do, however, think that one should have cheat days if one has been “good” for a while.  I have been pretty good since the first of the year!  I have lost about 8lbs. YAY me! I think that is reason enough to get one stress free food day.  When I was in college I had chocolate Saturday if I didn’t have any sweets during the week…you heard me right  All the chocolate I wanted on Saturday if I stayed away from sweet treats all week.

So…I had a wonderful birthday.  I had my caloric intake planned for Friday evening (we ate at Cracker Barrel) and after midnight I went willy nilly with the food.  I had a 1am pizza with my Sister-in-law after a much enjoyed rendezvous with some slot machines. Maybe a few glasses of wine. Then….a couple of VERY yummy donuts for breakfast on my birthday and after lunch TWO pieces of cake. I skipped the ice cream.  Today I am back on the road to fat annihilation.  I feel that I did pretty good yesterday and I am not feeling like I have to shove a massive amount of sweets in my face today! I think this is going to work! I hope everyone else has had a good weekend!

Wine or Chocolate?

Thank you to those to took time to stop by and read my post yesterday.  Also, thank you for the encouraging words on Facebook.  I am under no illusion that this process is going to be simple or that I am going to like it.  I was thinking about what I wanted to write about next on here last night.  I could rant about how hard it is to get water at McD or how awkward it feels to be one of the only fat people at the gym, or maybe just how scared I am that if I do lose the weight then I am going to have one of those ugly flab’s of skin that just hangs around my tummy…..all wonderful rants that I will get to!

I actually stumbled across a dilemma last night of mass proportions! At the end of the day I found myself with some left over calories (per MFP – my new way to reference My Fitness Pal).  But there was only enough for one small indulgence.  Hence the title of this entry.  What do I have….a glass of heart healthy red wine or an 11 piece serving of mini reeses peanut butter cups? One does not understand the dilemma here if one has never binged on both….at the SAME time! It truly is a good combination! Now MFP told me that, based on calorie consumption and exercise for the day, that I had approximately 200 calories to “use.” A glass of wine, not a bottle, is approximately 130 calories and 11 pieces, a serving size, of the pb cups are 200 calories. A true conundrum in my book! At the end of the day I went for the wine.  I am trying to have a glass of red wine each day if my caloric intake allows for it.  Plus….I wanted to stay within my sugar range and the mini reeses cups would have blown that out of the water!

CHOICES! That’s what this whole thing is going to be about.  If I want to make changes in my life…I have to make choices instead of indulgences.  Decisions instead of rationalizations. That’s the bottom line.  I get a lot of flack from Tony (my husband) about focusing too much on the calories. (he says calorie numbers aren’t that important…it is what you eat) This coming from the guy who transitioned to a paleo eating approach and lost about 25lbs over night! Sometimes I don’t like him 🙂 I think, for me, it won’t be so much about the CALORIES, but about the decisions on how I choose to get the calories.  I am a notorious sugar, junk food, poor food choice person.  That is what has to change.

Well…I guess that is enough for this morning! Until next time!

I am fat and I am not proud of it.

Here we go.  I am tired.  I am tired of being fat.  I am tired because of the extra weight I am carrying around.  I am tired of having achy knees.  I am tired of worrying that I could drop dead any day from a heart attach or stroke.

I am ready to work on change.  Geeze…..let’s do it.  I have to say that I am in a place where it is time to do something different.  What brought you to this point one might ask. The extra 8 pounds I added to my already overweight frame over the Christmas Holiday this year.  Yep…EIGHT pounds!  It was something about those eight pounds that has tipped the scale (pardon the pun). Maybe it was the rapid weight gain is a small period of time that rattled my cage..I don’t know what did it, but it has got to change!

So…a little about myself to get this whole change thing started.  I am a 6’1 female that, after the holidays, weighed 288 pounds. Holy Moly….I did just write that. Yep!  Now…personally I cannot even fathom what society really things about a GIRL weighing that much.  It goes against everything that media portrays as “woman.” Yep…288 lbs…you read it right.  Here’s the catch though….I spread it out nicely on my 6’1 frame! When I tell people I am overweight they just say…”nah, you look good.”  Liars! There is nothing about my body that is “good” at this point.  I actually lost 60lbs my freshman/sophmore year of college.  I went from about 240 down to about 180.  It was great!  I felt better than I had ever felt in my life….one might even venture to say that I was sexy. Sexy in a size 12. Some would say that 180 was still way too much for a female to weigh and the BMI would agree with those people, but my body would disagree.  I had all the right bones poking out in all the right places (hips and collar). I LOVED being 180.  Then I realized that all of my hair was falling out.  The problem, based on my readings, was probably due to my extreme limited caloric intake.  I literally ate less than about 1000 calories a day and lived on caffeine, as well as walking at least 3 miles a day probably 5 days a week.  That regimen melted away the pounds, but also caused me to have a lot of bruising and, well, make my hair fall out.  I had to stop that.  I started eating more…again.  Slowly the pounds started to stack back on.

By the time I was prepping for my wedding in 2007 I was probably back up to the 240lbs or so.  I can’t really remember.  Weighing in wasn’t really my thing.  I wasn’t going to the gym and I had a real job so I had real money and could buy whatever food I wanted. The problem is that I didn’t stop at 240….I just kept gaining.  Pregnancy was actually a blessed reprieve from weight gain, ironically. I had HORRIBLE morning sickness for basically 9 months.  I actually walked out of the hospital in May of 2010 weight less than I did when I got pregnant. I loved my post preggo body….then I breastfed and the weight came back. I LOVED eating and was starved for 18 months while breastfeeding my first….I think I may have added a few pounds beyond my pre-pregnancy weight by the time we got pregnant with #2 in 2011. Once again I walked out of the hospital in May of 2012 weighing less than I did when I got pregnant.  LOVED it….then I breastfed for 28 months….and gained it all back! Now, I don’t have numbers for these times in my life I just know that I probably topped out at 285 during each of my pregnancies and weight in at about 275 or so after my second pregnancy.  So….In the last two and a half years I have managed to stabilize my gain and keep it at about 5 pounds, but that changed at Christmas this year.  Did you hear me earlier….288lbs!

So…in November of 2014 I bought a vivofit from garmin.  It is quite harsh actually….this little red line tells you when you have been inactive for too long…I apparently am inactive a lot! To top things off, I had always thought that when I was teaching (I lecture at a community college) I was being active, but according to the vivofit….not so much so.  I was relying on that activity to keep me healthy!  What! It isn’t really activity? Damn! Gotta change that! In early January of this year I got into the whole MyFitnessPal thing.  OH GEEZE! That is one harsh site.  The best/worst part is that when you submit your daily eating it will tell you a projected weight, five weeks out, if you keep eating the way you did that day.  What an eyeopener! Gotta change. Then, to top things off, a friend posted an article about this dark, dirty looking place on the back of a persons neck. I have that!  My mom always told me I wasn’t taking a good enough bath. No matter how much I scrub it won’t come off! Come to find out it has a name…Acanthosis nigrican (http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/acanthosis-nigricans/basics/symptoms/con-20025600).  To sum up that article….it is basically pre-diabetic indicator. I gotta change.

All of this brings me to today…..I am gonna change.  Today I weigh 280lbs. I checked.  I have fought hard since early January to get off the holiday weight.  Now I gotta get off the 80lbs that is weighing me down (my apologies for the pun). This is hopefully going to be a starting point.  I know it isn’t going to be easy, but I am going to try my darnedest!