Sunday, April 29, 2012

New Goals

Well the weight loss challenge at work did not go anything like I had hoped.  I had small losses every week, and then a gain for the last weigh in.  James and I were out of town the previous week, for a family situation, staying at a hotel and eating all our meals out.  We were both feeling a great deal of emotional stress, and leaned towards comfort foods the whole time.  Even the snacks we kept in the room were not healthy choices.  I think James finished the challenge down 8 pounds, which I'm proud of him for. 

I've come up with a new challenge for us, and I'm hoping he'll do it with me.  Nine weeks from now, we'll be at Disney for a few days, so I'm setting that time frame as my new goal of getting down below that magic number of 200.  I've already got the weigh in chart on the refrigerator door, and if he wants to do this with me, that's great.  I'm hoping another "challenge" will keep him- and me- motivated.

I've got to get back to following the Weight Watchers plan, and start tracking again.  I abandoned it months ago due to pure laziness, and I feel that's the main reason I stopped losing after the initial 30 pounds.  I still see my biggest obstacle as work, being gone from the house sometimes for 12+ hours a day.  That is another very important goal I'm working towards, either cutting back or shifting my hours so I'm home earlier in the evenings- to exercise, to cook real dinners, to de-stress in a healthy way.  

We see so much in the news about the folks who have lost jobs, but very little about how overwhelmed and overworked the people are who go through lay-offs but remain at the company.  Yes, the staff got cut back, but the work did not!  At least at my company.  Those of us still there have had to pick up the duties of those who were let go.  I sometimes wish I had voluntarily taken the severance package instead of fighting to keep my job- but that is a story not for this blog.

I can only continue to set goals and work towards them, and not beat myself up when I don't reach them as quickly as I want to.


Saturday, March 17, 2012

Challenge Week Two

Our team had its first weigh in this week, and combined we lost 20 pounds. Not too bad! James and I both have been working hard and making the challenge a priority. I am very pleased with my progress, and if I keep it up, I feel that by the time the contest is over at the end of April, I might even reach my long-denied goal of getting under 200 pounds. I haven't been there since we got married, and it's been the carrot dangling just out of reach all this time.

It got warm here fast and early- after a mild winter we have jumped straight to the 80's with everything blooming. With the time change, James and I have been able to enjoy more outdoor activities on weeknights- including walks at the park and in our neighborhood, and playing basketball. I am hoping that if I drop another few pounds I will be able to tackle hiking again soon, something I used to love to do when I lived in the Carolinas. I've only been once or twice since living in Georgia, I just don't have the stamina at my weight. A nice hike is a goal for this summer.

For the upcoming week I plan to continue with walking and cutting back on how much I eat. We've both been eating a lot more vegetables now, and we've been having salad night for dinner at least 3 times a week. We don't get to see the weigh in results for our competition, but I think 20 pounds for week one is pretty darn good!


Sunday, March 4, 2012

Challenge Week One

Tomorrow is the start of the big weight loss challenge at work. I'm the only woman on a team of five, with my husband as our captain. We have our first weigh-in tomorrow, which is the part I dread the most. I know how much I weigh, and so does James, but the ladies in our HR department are the ones weighing us, and I am not thrilled to have "outsiders" know my weight. The rest of my team does not have to know my weight, only my captain/husband.

There are about a dozen plus teams just at our division in the competition, but we have 60+ divisions across the company/country- all with teams. And at the end, there will be one team who wins it all. I really don't even know if we win anything, just bragging rights. James wants to at the very least, win at our division. I know he and I are very motivated, but we are both the heaviest team members as well.

James had us set personal goals, that only he knows. I set 20 pounds for myself, and I think his is 25. I've seen James lose over 30 pounds in just a few weeks, to get ready for vacation. So I know he can do it. He's giving up alcohol, sweets, and fried foods. For me, 20 pounds in 8 weeks is probably not realistic, but I wanted to aim high. Heck, I've seen the people on The Biggest Loser do it. But my challenge is working at a desk for 60 hours a week, and still trying to eat right and get moving.

I've spent the weekend with all of my Weight Watchers materials and a few weight loss magazines scattered all over my dining room table, along with a notebook. I've been plotting out my plan for the challenge. I'm not sure James and I can work on this together as a team, because our approach is going to be different. He's not going to want a Lean Cuisine for dinner at night. His exercise routine is not going to be the same as mine, although we plan on long walks/runs on the weekends together.

But, we'll support each other and hopefully motivate/push each other. I probably need his support more than he will mine, but I can support him by not bringing in tempting foods into the house, or suggesting we go out to eat. I can get off the couch in the evenings and play basketball with him (his favorite activity). And, for myself, I can start going back to my WW meetings, because I haven't been since the last week of January. They keep sending me "please come back" postcards. So I intend to.

During the challenge, we will have to weigh in every week, but our team captain will be in charge of that. Our HR department will only do it for the first and last weigh in. James said he is thinking about having a "side bet" with our team- Waist Removal- for who can lose the most. The challenge is by percentage, not pounds, thank goodness!

Looking forward to getting started bright and early Monday morning! Will report back soon!


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Go Team!

After a really wonderful vacation- one my soul seriously needed- I came back with a fab tan and just a few pounds heavier. But it's all good, and the food in the Caribbean is worth slipping off the diet for. I only get to enjoy it once a year after all!

I've come to the point where I need to kick it up a notch with my efforts. I have gotten this far with just changes in my diet, and now I must must must start exercising if I want to push beyond this plateau. But when to find the time when I leave for work at 6am and sometimes get home after 7pm?? I know, I've seen the quote before- you can never "find" the time to do something, you can only make the time. Not sure that is true either, but oh well. (It MUST be true because when I tell my boss I don't have time to do something, she tells me to make the time!)

Our company organizes a weight loss challenge once or twice a year. This year, James and I have decided to participate. Employees form their own teams of 4-5 folks, and not only do we compete with the other teams at our office, but with all teams in the company nationwide. James is our team captain and is ultra-super duper-competitive. He made it clear that he wants to win, at least locally. He said if I join his team, I have to be serious about it.

The competition starts the first of March, and right away we've signed up for a walkathon for our local community food bank. The competition lasts for 8 weeks, but I am hoping that if we do it right, it will last us well beyond. I am sure James will reach his goal, because he is always very focused and dedicated to whatever project he is working on. I am the one who will have to step up, so I don't let the team down!

Go Team Waist Removal!!


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Inching Along

Well I am making progress, but it is still slow going. I am not going to give up, however, and I will take every little ounce of weight loss. I vow here on this post, that this is really really going to be the time I finally do it. It may take awhile, but heck, where exactly am I going? What else is there to do, but keep on keepin' on. I am having missteps along the route, but that was to be expected. I used to follow a blog, where the writer proclaimed that once he started losing weight, he never never ever had a gain at any of his weigh-ins, and he said everyone could do it (but then ticked me off when he said people who did have gains were not trying hard enough and were making excuses). Well, I do have an excuse- it's called life!! And hopefully, if you are reading this, you are alive and enjoying yours!

I still occasionally want a real Coke and not a diet, and I still don't always order a salad when we go out to eat, and I still come home pathetically exhausted and skip the treadmill, we do go out of town and I miss a Weight Watchers meeting. It happens, it's going to continue to happen, but I'm not going to let it happen enough that it totally derails me.

At the start of the year, I decided to try weighing every morning. I know, you really aren't supposed to, I've read articles that say it can get you obsessed with the numbers. But, I also read an article that said, people who weigh every day, don't have as many gains because they are more aware. I bought a nice calendar and put it on the back of the bathroom door, next to my scales. I weigh at the same time every morning. I make notes about what I did that day- did I eat lunch out, did I not exercise. I found that in the past, when I weighed myself once a week, I would be shocked on the weeks where I had a gain, and would try to figure out where it came from. Now, I can see it happening daily, and it really has made me focus more.

I keep track of the goals I've made for myself, and made notes at the bottom of the page for "monthly" goals- not all are weight-related. I track my five-pound milestones, where I reward myself with another charm on my bracelet (I go ahead and buy the next one, and keep it pinned up on a board in my closet so I can see what I will treat myself to).

So far, so good on my wagon ride this go round. Yee Hah!


Sunday, January 15, 2012


Lately I have been wanting to give up. I missed the last 4 WW meetings, I haven't been on the treadmill since before the holidays. My weight has been going up and down, up and down the last few weeks. Yesterday I just did not want to get up and make it to my meeting- it's easy to blow off leaving the house at 7:30 AM on a Saturday, just to go weigh in. In fact, all I wanted to really do, was sleep in.

But then James reminded me of all the progress I've made so far, and I shouldn't give up, and I should go to the meeting. I've been feeling sort of down lately about how SLOW that progress has been. I thought when I started back to WW in the fall, I'd be well under 200 pounds so far. I haven't been under 200 since before we were married, and that thought makes me fairly sad. I think, for a lot of people, the first major goal is having your weight start with a '1' finally.

I whined that we are gone out of town so much, I am paying monthly to sometimes only go to a meeting once a month. He said, so what- go when I can, but don't give up completely just because I can't get to 100% of the meetings. So I went yesterday and found that I had succeeded with my goal for the holidays- which was to maintain and not gain the dreaded "holiday season" weight. And I made it through. I weighed exactly to the ounce, what I weighed the last time I went to WW back on December 10th. For some people, not having lost anything in a month, would be a disappointment. But for me, to make it through all the festivities and food of Christmas and New Years, and come out on the other side without even an extra pound- was astounding.

So I am grateful- if my husband hadn't encouraged me to go to my meeting this week, I doubt I would have. And by not going to the meetings- the accountability, the helpful tips, to see other success stories- that's usually when I fall back off the wagon and start embracing the old unhealthy habits- it seems easier and more comfortable to do that. But, I'm not comfortable with myself or my weight.

I know there are a lot of really amazing and wonderfully supportive husbands out there, but I know for me, James is sometimes the only thing that keeps me going. Knowing that he cares, and that he's proud of me, makes me want to work even harder at it.

My current goal was to get down to 200 before our cruise. It is less than 30 days away now, and even though I don't think I will lose the whole 16 pounds by then, I'm not just going to throw up my hands and say I'm not going to even try. I'm going to work at it, and if I only lose 5 pounds, or 10 pounds, I am going to be okay with that and keep moving forward.


(New Years Eve in downtown Atlanta 2011- isn't he so handsome all dressed up?!)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Happy New Year

I did sort of good over the holidays, but not as great as I had hoped for. Then again, I didn't work as hard at it as I should have. Although from Thanksgiving to Christmas, I lost a few pounds- from Christmas through New Years I found them again! It was too hard at Christmas to not enjoy my mom's cooking while my parents were visiting. Then a week of leftovers were too convenient while I was working 12+ hour days. New Years was a three day celebration in downtown Atlanta that included lots of really great meals out.

With the new year, comes a clean slate, and like millions of others I'm ready to get back to program. I've missed the last three Weight Watchers meetings, and will miss next week's as well. Then right away in February I'll miss two more meetings when we go on vacation. I've got to realize that staying on program is an every day, every meal decision. It should have nothing to do with whether or not I'm going to make it to weigh in at the meeting that week. I am tired of going up and down on the scales. I know that December is the most trying month at my job, demanding extra extra long days, but it's over and I hope that January will bring a little relief and more time at home to take care of myself.

I'm happy with the weight I lost in 2011, and grateful that I made the effort to keep it off over the holidays. I've got a long road ahead of me, and for me it will take a great deal of dedication to continue. From using my time wisely for exercise, to organizing my points/meals, and keeping my focus on my goals instead of my distractions.