Friday, 29 July 2011

Just some Updating

I'm sorry it's been so long since I posted.  I just got caught up in the moments of life and I've been living them wholeheartedly.

I've been seriously enjoying my "No weigh-ins for 30 days."  I am sure I have gained some weight, but I'm not concerned about it.  I'll lose it again, as this is a life long journey.  I know there will be plenty of times that I will gain weight in the coming years.  As long as I don't let it get out of control and stay mindful, it will be fine.  I'm more concerned about how tough it will be to refocus!

Which brings me to a new program I am going to be trying for awhile.  I know you all know that Weight Watchers is my go-to.  I LOVE WW, I truly believe it saved my life.  But, the gym-job is rolling out a new program and my manager has asked if I would be a guinea pig for it, since so many of our members find my story inspiring.  I said sure, I would give it a try.  The weight loss "phase" lasts 90 days.  I told my manager that I would reassess how I felt about it after 3 weeks.  If I didn't like it, or if I wasn't seeing the same results WW was giving me, I would stop and go back to WW.  I will do a post about it when it starts. :)

Now for the bad news.  Remember all those aches and pains and injuries I have been having?  Well I finally put 2 and 2 together and saw a chiropractor who diagnosed scoliosis and reverse c-spine.  The scoliosis forces my hips out of alignment and I've been carrying around 30 lbs more on my right side than my left.  It also creates lots of pinched nerves that give me shooting pains or numbness.  The reverse c-spine is also a barrel full of problems.  So i will be spending lots of time on a traction table in the coming months to try and get it all straightened out.

Just a quick update so you all don't feel neglected.  I've missed you, but I hope you'll know I'm having fun living in the moment right now.  I'll be back to business after the dust settles a bit and tell you all about it!

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Creation to Creator

I wrote this several years ago and still play it to myself on days when I'm not feeling at the top of my game.  A blog friend wrote for me and I thought this might return the favor.  You know who you are. :)

Creation to Creator

You claimed inspiration in every desire
when you began dreaming of me.
You even knew the path I'd serve
before I came to be.

You planned, crafted, modeled and molded
a perfect masterpiece.
Then started me in childhood
to learn about bloodied knees.

You picked me up, dusted me off,
added dimples and rosy cheeks.
Then adolescence knocked me down
and heartache filled those peaks.

You shaped and contoured, shadowed and lined
each wrinkle and every crease.
Yet ended up with a woman, impatient with life
who quietly lacked self esteem.

You, Maker, did right in creating perfection
in all that is unseen.
Unfortunately beauty is only skin deep
in the greater creation of apathy.

But though I may be bruised, Lord-
though I may be scarred and dirty.
I hope that you'd be proud, Sir,
and still see the art in me.

See C.

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Deez GUNZ!

Sunday I walked a 5k with 3 lbs hand weights (5 AP's)
Monday I worked at the gym job and completed 5 circuits including power-half-hour class. (17! AP's)
Tuesday I worked the gym job and completed 3 circuits and a Zumba class (15! AP's)

Deez gunz (ignore the hanging skin)... PRICELESS!!

Needless to say, I've been working out HARD.  My body feels great.  Really strong!!  My feet complain, but that's nothing new.  I can really tell a difference in my arms though!  The definition of muscle I'm seeing is really promising.

This morning I did a little weight lifting with kettleballs (5-year-old got in on the action- LOVE being a positive role model for her! :oD), also some side crunches and a nice and easy 30 minute work out at the spa gym this afternoon.  I warmed up with a jog, powered through the rowing machine, finished my cardio on the elliptical and did some vertical knee raises on that big steel contraption.  WTF is that thing called?  Looks like a torture device...

Pampered myself with 20 minutes in steam room and a nice long shower afterward and I'm feeling really relaxed and refreshed.  My mind is at ease with taking a break from the weight losing mentality and I'm feeling really good about the decisions I've made this week.  I hope you're all feeling good about yourselves this week, too.  It's a fantastic feeling!

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

A Learning Experience

After my last post, I've done some soul searching.  The great thing about soul searching is that nothing is set in stone.  I can change my mind as much and as often as I want.  But, I wanted to update yooz guys on what my plan is for now.

For the next 30 days, I will be taking a break from the weight-losing mentality.  Am I quitting?  NO!!  Ya'll know me better than that by now!  My hope is that I will be refreshed and ready to refocus.

I am not letting my healthy lifestyle fall to the wayside. 
I am continuing to track my food, and I am definitely going hard on the exercise and activity front. 
I am NOT weighing-in or looking at the scale for the next 30 days.

I have decided that I DO want to lose those last 25 pounds, despite the people telling me that I don't "look" like I need to lose more.  Those last two goals I posted about last are important to me, and so I will achieve them. 

Will I gain weight in the next 30 days?  I certainly hope not!  But, it might happen.  My thoughts are that in 30 days, with the plan I have, I can't image the damage will be too very severe.  Thankfully, I won't regain the 140 pounds I've lost in just 30 days.  Either way it goes (gain, lose, or maintain) I'm going to consider at learning experience.

Thanks to all of you who weighed in with your opinion.  They really did help me make the decisions I needed to make! :oD  You are the best!

Sunday, 10 July 2011

At a Crossroad...

Dropped off for a couple of days.  I'm still doing okay.  But I'm deep in thought.

I worked at the Gym job on Saturday morning and lots of ladies that I don't usually get to see in my afternoon shifts came in and commented on how great I looked and how much weight I'd lost since the last time they had seen me.  They were all astounded to hear that I still wanted to lose 25 more.  In their eyes, I looked great and was a healthy weight.  I'm not talking just one or two women.  I'm talking about 5 or 6 completely different conversations that all seemed to go the same way...

Of course it got me thinking.  Do I need to keep losing?  I have achieved all but two of my goals for weight loss. 

The first being that I wanted to be wearing a "medium" size top.  I didn't ever want to have to say, "I'm a large..." anything ever again.  I know LOTS of women at healthy weights (in my eyes) that wear a large t-shirt.  But in my head, it's called a large because that's what it is and I just didn't want to be "large" anymore.

The second being that I wanted to be considered at a healthy weight for my age and height according to the charts in the doctor's offices.  For me, that is a range between 140-160lbs.  My goal was to end up right in the middle of that range at 150lbs, giving me a bit of leeway when it came to fluctuations. 

I know that this journey should not necessarily be about the number on the scale.  I know there are many, many more factors that contribute to overall health than that.  But, I'm trying to decide how it should be judged for me.  Should I keep striving for that specific number on the scale? 

I'm certainly feeling burnt out lately when it comes to the weight loss struggle.  After making the promise not to binge for 7 days, it was all I could think about.  Cat always tells me to be be kind to myself, and I wasn't.  I was beating myself up over the urges I was having to eat.  I was saying mean things to myself, thinking mean things when I looked in the mirror.  I was trying to convince myself that I wasn't good enough for yet another reason.  I was telling myself that I would be a failure if I didn't follow through with what I said.

Always in my life I've had a hard time deciding when to be satisfied and when to push for more.  It is an on-going life lesson for me that I am very slow to learn.  I am the type of person who strives for perfection, I hate the phrase "it's good enough."  And I very seldom choose to accept less than what I originally set out for.

So I'm thinking right now.  I'm deciding to stay neutral on the topic of my weight at this point.  After almost 2 years of fighting myself at every meal, and of giving myself convincing pep-talks about goals and hopes whenever a craving strikes, I am exhausted.  I am going to continue following my Weight Watchers program simply to ensure I do not gain weight, but I think I'm going to ask not to see my weight results for awhile.  I am not going to monitor every point (or calorie) that I eat so very closely.  I am going to track, like I always have, but I'm not going to obsess over it any more.  I'm going to remain active and see if I can build more muscle and hopefully tone some of the excess skin I have.

I spoke to my mom (who is active and at a healthy weight) about my thoughts and she said she thinks I look great and pointed out that I have a lots of extra skin- which obviously contributes to the number on the scale.  And, if/when I have surgery to remove the excess skin, it's possible that I may lose 10-12 lbs of flesh.  But, with the number that is on the scale right now, that would still put me at about 166 lbs- which is still technically considered "over-weight" by the doctor's chart.  My BMI is 27.9 (which is overweight) and my body fat % was 32.7 in May (which by some is still considered obese.)  All these measurements say I still need to lose weight.  But many of the people I know seem to feel differently...

Part of the problem I'm having is seeing beyond that skin.  For some reason, when I look in the mirror, my brain tells me that that skin is fat.  My reflection is the same as when I was fat, just deflated.  But what I'm realizing now, is that if that skin were fat, I would weight A LOT more than I do.  I can see muscle under the skin.  I can see bones.  So I know that I have come a long way from where I started.  I need to spend some time trying to see the shape my body is in beneath the skin...but it's very difficult for me to see past it right now.  (Sorry, I'm just not brave enough to post a picture of the stomach side of my body.LOL)

I know that all the things I don't like about my body are because of that skin.  I had originally said that I would wait until I was 30 to have the skin removal surgery, because that's when "they" say your skin stops producing the elastic that allows your skin to retain it's shape.  Another reason I was going to wait was that if I decided to have a baby, I wouldn't want to end up with a whole new layer of excess skin.  But I'm 26 right now, and it's really difficult for me to imagine working this hard to lose the weight, and still not be able to see the real results for 4 more years.

Am I being vain?  Am I looking for excuses to quit?  Should I ignore what my friends and family are saying and continue to steam roll towards my original measurement oriented goal?  What do you all think?  I'm sure some of you have been at this impass, this crossroads...  Please weigh in... 

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Deciding to Succeed

Ugh!!  Yesterday was out of control!  Well, I was fine until the evening, after that though, I just couldn't stop eating!  It was ridiculous!  I won't go into what I ate- the list would be too long.

What I am going to do is lean on the accountability I have with you all.

I have nixed my other goals in trade for this one:

I WILL go the next 7 days without a binge.

I WILL...dammit!

It might take all my focus, but losing the weight I have will not do anything for me if I can't manage to eat a HEALTHY amount on a regular basis. 

Wish me luck!

Today has been fine- well, so far. 

No, I refuse to think that way.  I WILL succeed because that is what I have decided to do.  I will NOT binge for the next 7 days...


Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Exercising with an Injury

Well, I guess it's more of a "condition."  Awhile back I was diagnosed with tendonitis- among a few other associated things.  I've had problems with my legs and feet since I was an infant born with hip dysplasia that required me to spend my first year in a bilateral spica cast.  (if you're interested, google it.)  Anyway, since then I've had issues with my legs and feet; the joints, ligaments, muscles, and alignment.  Most people would never know it looking at me, but I have very weak ankles, and my feet turn in when I walk, which puts a lot of pressure in all the wrong places.  

This tendonitis occurs on the top out-side of my left foot.  The pain pulses from ankle to toes.  There are days when it doesn't bother me at all, and there are days that I go to bed early just so I can stop thinking about it.  The doctor has given me numerous orders for wrapping it, a gel pain reliever, a prescription anti-inflamatory, and even a few rounds of cortisone injections.  All of them are only temporary fixes.

Has this stopped me from going hard?  From exercising with fervor?  From running and doing jumping-jacks and other high-impact exercise?  No.  Why?  Because the thing about tendonitis is that is doesn't get better.  Not the kind I have.  No amount of rest or R.I.C.E. ing will solve my problem. 

Today is one of those days that I think I will be going to bed early.  For the third day in a row now I have walked a 5k or more, and BOY OH BOY am I feeling it.  I decided awhile ago not to take the medications (the tablet or the gel).  If I'm going to have to live with this forever, I'd rather just learn to accept it.

There may very well be a time in my life that I will need to have surgery.  For now though- it is only one more reason to lose the weight and get to a healthy place...

So for all of you out there dealing with losing weight while contending with chronic pain, probably worse than mine, please know that you're not alone.  And that every pound you lose, the better chance you have at a pain free day tomorrow.  I'm thinking about you.

-See C.

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Full of Endorphins

This morning started off with my hubby making me french toast (WW style) for breakfast this morning.  French toast is one of a few things that I only like when he makes it.  Guess I can taste the love?

As I was eating I was perusing through my stack of books I gathered from the library this week.  The one I picked was by Martha Stewart, and it was about organizing small spaces.  Getting new and fresh ideas makes me feel a bit less stressed and a bit more hopeful about the whole moving and down-sizing thing.  What girl doesn't like redecorating and organizing?  This one sure does...

It got me thinking about how many things I have changed in my life these past (almost) two years.  All the reorganizing I have done in my brain to get me where I am.  Clearing out mindless cobwebs from the places that hadn't been thought about for a long time.  Reorganizing my thoughts on what I can and cannot do.  Getting rid of my previous thoughts and ideas about exercise and weightloss, bringing in knowledge and information on new ways to think about it.  Making decisions on what I am and what I am not.  Fighting for what I know to be the right way, against myself who often would prefer the things the easy way.  It's exhausting just writing it, but reading gives me a sense of accomplishment.  I know I've told you all before, but I'm not kidding when I say that it is a wonderful feeling to be able to surprise even yourself with what you can achieve when you really put in the effort.  When people say "What you've done is amazing!" , I always answer, "Believe me, no one is more surprised than I am."

Headspace at Idle to Idol is coming across this realization this week, too.  He is my favorite blog this week hands-down.  His honesty in his posts can be almost overwhelming in the truth he has managed to put into words.  I find myself nodding to the screen like, "Word!  That's what I been thinking and feeling and you just laid it all out, easy as pie!"  Please go and check him out.  He's lost 60 pounds in his journey so far, while still going to school!

So when I finished with breakfast I began going through the drawers and cabinets and closets again.  This has become a kind of weekly ritual to continue to declutter and get rid of things that I don't think we will use or need.  I've been selling some things off on craigslist and have been saving the money to use for things I will want to by to make the new place work for us.  It's a start- and it's got me feeling more positive than negative about the unknowns that come with moving.

I threw away 2 more garbage bags of crap from the closets and drawers and cabinets- and filled up another box for the Goodwill before I called it quits in the house and ate a stir fry lunch.  After lunch I decided that if I didn't go and exercise then, I would probably end up taking a nap that I didn't really need.  Got dressed for the gym and realized I'd left my ipod in the car, so ran out to get it and check the mail on the way in and found a card from my sister:

The card reads: "You vs. It" on the front and on the inside says "You.  Hands-down.  No doubt in my mind.  You've got this."  Her note says "You have truly amazed me!  I don't think I can accurately described how proud of you I am.  Stick with it!"

I know I've talked about my sister to you all before.  She is the one I visit in Texas.  Anyway, go ahead and be jealous- I know you all wish your sister was this freakin' awesome. :oD

Needless to say, after receiving that card, I headed off the gym with my head held high and surprised myself once again- running for 18 minutes without having to walk for a total of 35 minutes on the treadmill.  Blowing my last "running without walking" record of 13 minutes out of the water by a whopping 5 minutes.  Which, of course, reinforces to me that really, running is a total mind game for me.  Anyway, I was still feeling pretty good after that and did a few sets on our crappy weights machine.  Just another example of the power and positive energy you all give me to succeed with your encouragement and support.

I'm feeling pretty great now.  Lots of endorphins after all that.  Looking forward to a Fourth of July dinner with my parents tonight.  No need to worry, everything is being grilled and I have a plan! :)  For you Americans, happy 4th!  For you Canadians, Happy Canada Day! (sorry I'm late!)  And for those of you in the UK...uhhh...Long live the Queen!

Saturday, 2 July 2011

July Goals

ONE HUNDRED AND THREE readers!  Gosh I feel so proud!!  But, really it has nothing to do with me at all.  I'm so greatful to have you all here to feed my ego and keep me motivated, and call me out when I'm being ridiculous.  So thank you VERY much to all of you who are here for the long haul, thank you very much for all of you who posted my link, and thank you newcomers for finding value in what I have done.  I hope I don't disappoint you!

At my WI this morning at WW (the official weigh in) I had lost the two pounds I gained last week.  It's great to see the scale moving back in the right direction and I know I'll be kayaking before the end of this month!  I got to take down pounds 179 and 178 this morning- so just 5 more until kayaking! 

I'm doing anything and everything I can to renew my motivation and excitement in this journey.  I'm so close I can smell it!  I've seen a lot of you post a monthly goal or update.  I am still doing the Slimmer This Summer Challenge as well, so now seems like as good a time as any to post some goals.  I'm going to post a weeks worth of goals and a summery of what I hope that the next 4 weeks will accomplish.

This week:
1.  I will exercise 6 days and earn 35 AP's for the week.

2.  I will stick to my DP's and not use my WP's or AP's.  I will do this by preplanning my meals.  This has been very difficult for me lately.  So I think I'm going to say that for 1 week, I will not use them, then the next week, I will allow myself to use half of my WP's for the week (25 extra points).  I'm hoping this plan will help keep me on track so that I have something to work towards, something to look forward to, and avoid feeling deprived, while still watching the scale go down.  We'll see :)

3.  I will up my water intake.  I even bought a new cup to help me.  Drinking is not usually my problem.  The problem is that I drink so quickly that refilling my cup has become quite a chore.  So, I bought the largest BPA free bottle I could find.  It is 64 ounces, or 8 cups.  I easily drink 2-3 a day.

4.  This week I will be avoiding convenience items (usually Morningstar or Boca products).  I have become a bit too reliant on them lately.  I need to get back to cooking my meals from with fresh ingredients from scratch.  I have three recipes planned to make this weekend for the week that I am really looking forward to.

My 30 day goal is that by August 2nd, one month from today, is simple.  I will be in the 160's working my way down.  I'm keep my expectations a little looser and less detailed than usual because there is so much going on in my life right now with career changes and 12 hour days and moving and a hubby looking for work.    Being in the 160's working my way down will mean I have lost at least 7.8 lbs in the next 30 days.  That seems easily doable to me right now, but like I said, with so many other things going on this month, as long as the scale goes down and not up, I'll be happy!

Have you posted your goals?  Do you have goals?  Well you need some!  Go get some!!  I'm also going to be working on a vision board.  I haven't decided what that means yet, but I'm falling more and more in love with the reading I've done on "The Secret" and how it has been working in my life this past month.  This vision board doesn't only cover my weight loss, but also many other facets of my life.  So, I'm sure you'll be seeing that from me soon enough.

I hope you all are celebrating your losses this week and your achievement of successfully making it through another month in your journey.  Here's to the next 30 days of evolving into the people we want to be! Cheers! 

-See C.