Sunday, May 23, 2010

Weigh In #2: -1.0 lbs

Well, not a great loss, but it was a loss so I will take it! I know I didn't do a great job with my eating this week, but I did a good job on the treadmill. Considering the amount of overtime I worked this week, I was proud of myself on the nights when I was just bone tired, but got on the treadmill nonetheless. My goal is to get up to two-three miles every night, right now it's been just a few nights a week, but I know it will be an ongoing process with ever-changing goals and strategies. This week, I am changing my eating plan- last week I attempted to have "variety" every day so I wouldn't get bored, but it lead to a lot of rummaging through the pantry and fridge, and I found myself getting off track. This week I am going the polar opposite and setting a daily menu (with points calculated!!) and sticking to the same menu every day. I want to see which way is more likely to work for me in the long run. If it means having turkey on whole wheat every day for lunch, then if that works, so be it!


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Why I Still Hate Shopping

I've posted before about shopping for clothes, and I think every plus-sized woman (who the hell thought up that phrase anyhow?) has gone through that love/hate relationship with the dressing room mirror. I am beyond the "does this make me look fat" stage- because I am over 200 pounds and I am fat, and clothes don't hide that!! And while my favorite store for clothes, Kohl's, has larger sizes that are a step above other stores, I still get annoyed with my choices.

Tonight I went through it. I stopped at Kohl's to take advantage of their big sale, and because I wanted a few new tops for this summer. I have a tendency to shop for work clothes before I will casual clothes. And the other night when we went to the Braves game, it took me almost an hour of trying on clothes to figure out what to wear- getting dressed in the morning for the office takes about five minutes. I don't have a lot of T's or cotton tops, mainly because I don't really care for unforgiving cotton- which on me tends to accentuate every roll and bulge. And so I don't have a lot of good tops for summer. The few that I have that I love, this is probably the third or fourth summer I will be wearing them, and they are starting to show it.

Summer is a hard time for me when picking out clothes. I'm okay with shorts or crop pants, but when it comes to tops, I don't have much luck. A short-sleeved fitted cotton T doesn't do as much to cover everything like a big flowing peasant blouse in the winter. And I've been known to wear long sleeves into the office during August- here in the Deep South- just to hide the jiggly fat above the elbow. Or, if I do get a cotton top, I end up getting 1-2 sizes bigger than what I normally wear, just so it won't cling to me and show everyone right where my bra straps start and stop.

But I digress. So tonight I went to Kohl's, and while I was standing there in the "Women's" department (which I'm not sure why it's called that, because a 43-year-old who wears a medium is still a woman- you don't have to be overweight to qualify for that title)- which is right next to the "normal" sizes. And as I'm looking over at the oh-so-cute outfits on just the next rack, I'm holding up big frumpy shirts with way too obvious bright colors or designs. Like a giant pink butterfly across my midsection is going to draw your attention away from that area. But, I came home with a bag full of clothes nonetheless. Which made me wonder- if I was a medium (not the psychic kind, because I would already know the answer to the question), and the clothes that I bought tonight were right there in a medium among all the other cute clothes I saw tonight- would I have bought these same tops? Or did I buy them simply because they fit and they were all I had to pick from?

I realized that no, I would probably not have purchased even one of the items I brought home, if I'd had all the choices that I saw over in the Misses department. Not that I hate any of the clothes I bought, I just hate the fact that because of my weight, my choices are so limited. I've blogged about this before, but tonight just seemed to remind me of how the plus-size clothing industry is SO SO way off the mark. Why can't they take those same cute tops I see over in the regular sizes (I guess I am irregularly sized), and add a little more fabric and cut it a little more generously, and make it in my size!!


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

A Fun Tool

I just wanted to show off a wonderful diet and exercise journal that I found at Barnes & Noble, but I also found it on Amazon as well. I've been through a lot of diet journals over the years, and of course I love all the Weight Watchers trackers and journals provided at the meetings. But this log book has it all! It came out in 2007, and for anyone interested the ISBN is 978-1-7418-1135-3. I am in my third week of using it and so far I have no complaints about this one!

The journal is good for an entire year, with four pages devoted to each week. In the front of the journal are several pages to record current statistics and write down personal goals. Plenty of room for me to write down everything I eat every day, and it also has a place to track your carbs and your protein, which aren't really components of figuring out my WW points, but it's still interesting to track it. I like the extras, like the Hunger Scale for every meal, and I particularly like the area where I can notate "possible diet-busting" events for the week.

At the end of each week, there's a page for weekly totals. Extras that I've not seen in any other journal include a place to track your sleeping habits, your mood, your energy level. I've used these areas to make a lot of notes that I'm hoping will be helpful when I look back on the whole week. I think if you click on these photos, it will give you a closer view of the details.

The last page for the week is to track all your exercise. So far mine has just been the treadmill, but I have all my free weights next to the treadmill and I plan to start using them very soon- to help strengthen my problematic back issues as well as build muscle/burn more calories and fat.

At the very back of the book are monthly summaries for every month, with every statistic and goal imaginable. And there is even place to put your photo every month, so you can watch your progress and transformation. I don't have a photo in there yet, but I am currently cruising through our recent photo album to find one for my "starting" place. I definitely already have "the worst" photo of me ever in my Weight Watchers weigh-in book. I am a long ways away from that photo, but I still have an even longer way to go.

Just thought I would share this diary with anyone who is looking for one concise place they can record it ALL!


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Weigh In #1: -4.2 lbs

So I made it to my first weigh in this morning. The Weight Watchers meetings are at this church. I've always gone to an actual WW center, but the only way I can stick with my favorite leader Marci is to find her here. I lost 4.2 pounds, for a two week period, because I didn't go to last week's meeting. I like the Saturday morning group better than the Thursday night group. A lot more folks go on Saturday, so it's better participation in the group discussions, plus a lot more tips and ideas from the members. It feels good to go back to WW. I've always lost the weight while attending the meetings, but I have to have the meetings in order to keep me on track. Since I've found a leader who I truly adore- she's very energetic and spontaneous and upbeat- it makes it easier to get to the meeting every week. Because I want to see her. And because I "want" to go to the meetings, I have to stay on track with my eating for weighing in. I know a lot of people out there lose weight without ever attending any kind of meeting, or following a commercial diet plan, but I know from past experience that Weight Watchers works for me personally. And it works well. So, here's to starting off on the right foot!


Friday, May 14, 2010

I Can Do It

So this is the photo of me that everybody in the family just loves, when I was a lot thinner and before I cut off all my hair. It was taken in spring 2004, and after having reached my highest weight ever just a few years earlier, I was down to about 150 here, and just fitting into a brand new pair of size 12 jeans. Which I wore twice, and which are still in my closet as my ultimate "clothes goal". How did I lose the 90 pounds, all in 2003? With devotion to Weight Watchers, my treadmill, and my Leslie Sansone DVD's. Although I had the right tools, I unfortunately had the wrong mindset.

This is going to be an honest post that I hope doesn't offend James- he's heard it before anyhow. But, in 2003, I was SO angry and frankly, disgusted, with my ex-husband that I found every way and every reason to avoid him. When he would come home from work, I would go into another room and stay on the treadmill for sometimes two hours, just to get away from him. Or I would put on headphones and go walk the neighborhood around and around, just to be out of the house. My Weight Watchers gave me a reason to be gone from the house on Saturday mornings, to meet up with a girlfriend and fellow member afterward for coffee and long chats. I would live off Lean Cuisines, but by that time the ex and I no longer sat down to meals together anyhow.

I remember being on the treadmill every evening, listening to my music loud, and pounding out all the frustration and unhappiness- and I would go as long and as hard as my body would let me, sometimes until I was completely exhausted and the bad feelings were just drained out of me. The result was, of course, the weight loss. And yes the result was fantastic, and everyone back home was just amazed when I came to visit (when the photo was taken). But at the point of this photo, the ex was out of my life, and James was in it, and the anger and bitterness and sadness and all the other things I had been feeling were gone. I was happy and finally in love with the right man. No suppressed fury to pound away on the treadmill, no heaviness in my heart that needed uplifting with music and a walk around the block.

And no, this story is not to imply that James had anything to do with me gaining most of the weight back. Of course not! The fault is with me, because when I lost that weight in 2003, I did it for the wrong reasons. Not for my health, not for myself, not for a better life. The whole time, with every mile walked, with every pound lost, I felt like I was shedding the heavy weight that was on my shoulders from a bad marriage, and that had nothing to do with my actual physical weight. Once that marriage was over, once the burden was lifted all at once, I relaxed. With everything. And that included the exercising and the eating. I can't explain it. It was as though my anger was driving me, motivating me, and once the anger was gone, so was the motivation. I had the physical tools to get me to goal, but I did not have the mental tools to keep me there.

I don't know if that makes sense to anyone else. But I know that I have my first weigh-in with Weight Watchers tomorrow, and I am very happy to be back there again. And this time, it's NOT because I'm mad at anyone, that's for sure!


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Moving Forward

My hubby is so sweet, he picked these "flowers" coming back from lunch and brought them by my desk. I made the "vase".

Anyhow, I am back on here with finally some encouraging and motivating reasons for me to stay on the blog more frequently. I finally started going back to Weight Watchers. I've only had my first initial meeting, and this Saturday morning I go in for my first weigh-in. I was able to find my leader who taught the meetings I went to for most of 2009. And she has meetings here in Newnan on Thursday evenings (I can barely get there after work), and on Saturday mornings. I'm going to plan for the Saturdays, unless we are out of town, and then I have Thursday as an option.

I haven't been great at keeping my points this week, but I am getting used to it again, and easing my mindset to that direction. Tracking is easy- I write the points down in my book. But looking at food for its points value, I've got to get used to that again. I've been shocked at how many points some of the things have that I've been relying on the last few months- my yogurt (not fat free), soy milk, rice crackers. And while I was trying the gluten-free lifestyle (I have given that up, it did not help my psoriasis one bit) I was not really watching my fat intake on certain items (like rice chips!).

We've been going out a lot, and went out of town this weekend for the holiday. But I am definitely tracking my points. I've got all my WW gear from before- to calculate my points and to track them every day. And I keep my "Dining Out" guide near at hand with my thousands of notes and highlighted food choices. I find it incredibly easy to keep to my points when I eat at home, or bring my lunch to work. But, as in the past, I struggle when I am "out" of my comfort zone. When we eat out- whether it be a restaurant or fast food joint, or at someone else's house, or a sporting event- I really really falter. Enough, it seems, to undo the good I've accomplished on the days I feel more "in control". Of course, I am ALWAYS in control of what I eat and how much, and I am learning to work my way through that mentally again.

For now, I am happy to report that I am making progress, and I am looking forward to getting back on track with Weight Watchers and my fabulous leader Marci. I know WW works, because I've lost loads of weight with it. But without it, I seem to instead lose my way and the pounds creep back on me.

After this week's weigh-in, I'm going to update my counter at the bottom of my page to coincide with the WW scale. And I'm going to add an exercise ticker back again, to keep track of my walking. Thanks for everyone who has been hanging in there with the slow going on this blog. Hopefully now I will have more to talk about! Soon!