Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Back in the Saddle Again

Okay, I know I’ve been about as diligent in writing this blog as I have been with the whole dieting thing…and for that I apologize. I won’t go into a bunch of excuses here…because let’s be honest, nobody really cares (including me). But the time has come. I’ve taken the entire summer off to gorge on bbq, chips and dip, potato salad, Summer Shandy…..and now my friends, summer is coming to an end. And alas, so must my binging on unhealthy foods.

Last Spring when I was relaying everything I ate to you, I was the most successful. So I’m going to start again. I will try to make it as quick and painless as possible. I weighed in this morning at 164.4 lbs. I believe my lowest weight (back about 4 months ago) was 159. So now I have 5 lbs. to lose to get back to where I was...which, let’s face it - it’s never fun having to re-lose weight you’ve already taken off once. I am currently wearing a size 10 and although I’m happy with it and have bought some new pants (finally), it’s not my ultimate goal (which is still to reach 130 by my 40th birthday next May).

My plan is to cut back to 1,200 calories per day again (ah, joy), to record it on my Spark People website and lastly, to report back to all of you here. I also plan to start walking on the treadmill again at least 5 days a week (which will kill two birds with one stone because my hubby will finally quit nagging at me for not using it when I HAD to have it last Spring). Wish me luck!

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Perfect Ten

It's been an uneventful past couple of weeks. I have been eating really poorly lately...I mean REALLY poorly. As an example, last Friday night I had Doritos and cookie dough for dinner. I have also been sampling adult beverages on more nights than I care to admit. Chalk it up to stress. Well, that...and the fact that it's 109 degrees outside and I just enjoy a cold beer on those types of days. I am still within 5 lbs. of my lowest (stomach flu induced) weight to date. I think I'm at 162 or so. Not bad, considering. Did I mention the Doritos? I seem to have a real problem with those these days. My husband keeps asking if I'm pregnant. I'm not.

I finally broke down and bought three new pairs of size 10 pants. Immediately my husband says, "I guess the diet's off". Well, not exactly, although it has been lately. I have recently had a few social occasions which called for the wearing of pants. Fitting, professional pants, that is. Besides...what if I decide not to lose any more weight for the next 3-6 months?? I'm just not in the mood to eat healthfully right now. I guess that really sums it up. Although I waxed on and on about this being a "lifestyle change", it still takes effort - major effort. The choices, although somewhat less difficult to make now, are not that easily made. It definitely doesn't come naturally. I still have to make a conscious effort to have salad for lunch rather than the burger I really want. Maybe I was kidding myself.

I don't plan on giving up. I'm just taking a break. I feel truly happy with my current weight. Yes, I still wish I had less cellulite, stretch marks, a flatter stomach...the list goes on. But all in all, I feel good in my skin and my clothes. There's something to be said for that.

I will continue the journey, just not as hardcore right now. I will eventually have to get back to writing down here everything I've eaten - that's the only thing that really seemed to make me feel accountable. I'm just not at that point right this minute but I'm perfectly okay with that.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Fad Diet Anyone?

Okay. I'm sure most of you have heard of the infamous HCG diet by now and probably even know someone who's tried it. Two of my friends recently tried it and they had awesome results...of course. She lost 14 lbs. in the first two weeks and her husband lost 18 lbs. I was over at their house for dinner and they fixed me a yummy salad (like that always do...they make the best salads ever...and I'm not even a salad person) complete with feta and pine nuts. Yum. They had plain leaf lettuce (you're not allowed any sort of dressing - just lemon juice), a chicken breast and four or five pieces of Melba toast. Yum again. They explain to me that they got their "supplies" online and you take a few drops in your morning water (you cannot eat for the first three hours every day), have a lunch that consists of exactly what I just described above and a dinner that consists of exactly what I described above....every day for 26 days. You're limited to around 500 calories a day. I immediately ask them if they think they'd probably lose a similar amount of weight just eating 500 calories a day and skipping the hormones. "Maybe. But the drops ensure you are burning fat and not muscle mass." Not quite sure why this is. My next comment..."Good luck keeping it off". We all know that's a whole different ball game. Don't get me wrong, I wish them success...I'm just skeptical. But that's my nature. Even so, I (of course) contemplate ordering the drops and when I look at one of the many websites devoted to this fad, it explains how your weight loss on this diet comes from fat stores and not muscle but in the end, I really didn't understand how or why. I'll admit it....I'm no expert on physiology.

I'll concede that I sometimes post certain statuses on FB just for a reaction. I want to know what people think of certain "hot" topics. I like to play devil's advocate. Like when I asked if people let their kids watch Spongebob. I don't really care...I just want to know who thinks what and why. I find it interesting. Anyway...moving on. So I post the following status -- "thinking about ordering HCG drops. Anyone tried this fad diet and if so, what kind of results did you have?" I got about six or seven responses and had several more people send me private messages saying (in a nutshell) "don't do it". I also got sent links to everyone from Dr. Oz to Richard Simmons giving me THEIR opinions (they're against. Go figure).

When you see people around you having such fantastic results with "fad" diets, it's difficult not to be tempted into doing them yourself. I'm 39-years-old and I know myself pretty well. I knew deep down I would never order them no matter how tempted I was. I'm just not built that way. Not that I've never tried fat diets...I just know through experience that even if they work, you can't keep the weight off. The only way to lose weight healthfully and to have much better odds at keeping it off is to eat better/less and exercise. Period. I know this...everyone knows this. And this knowledge is reinforced by the fact that I have managed to keep all the weight I've lost off just by making better choices every day.

I'm not lecturing people...if they have luck with a method and feel it's right for them, they should do it. I just know weight loss is a slow and steady thing. You need to stay the course. Besides, I can't imagine how crappy I'd feel eating 500 calories a day.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Too Hot to do Anything Other than Eat and Drink...

Boy, I'm just failing all over the place here. I keep meaning to post something but I have not lost any weight...well, really...and I am feeling less-than-inspired these days. There I go again ~ making excuses.

I weighed in at 158.4 yesterday. Aside from last month when I had the stomach flu, that's the lowest I've been since I started this blog. The funny thing is (not haha funny - but you know...) that I haven't been working out at all and I haven't really been watching what I eat either. I'm somehow maintaining the weight loss to-date, thankfully. People keep commenting that I look thinner but I have to assure them that alas, I am not. So for that, I am thankful too. I always say "better to look good than to feel good".

I don't know what it is about summer. Most people experience more weight issues/gain in the winter...particularly in MN (where I'm from) and other cold states. There's not much to do in the winter time there other than curl up with a good book and a big bowl of beef stew. I used to gain 10 lbs. every winter and then it would fall right off in the Spring once it started getting nice outside and I could leave the couch. Maybe I'm just experiencing the reverse in AZ. I'm not as active this time of year (too darn hot to be outside unless you're floating in the pool...and we all know how many calories THAT burns)...Then add the constant BBQs, margaritas, etc. etc. and it becomes a real challenge to lose weight (or even maintain) in the summer here. During the winter however, us Phoenicians become more active and the temptation to cool your core temperature with a Blue Moon (or several) dissipates.

I will say this though - even though I'm not losing, I haven't really gained either. I find that I am making better decisions now and that even when I eat something "bad", I eat less of it. Hey - that must count for something!

On another note, I'm back on the juice...er, Diet Coke. Not full-time, but I have had one or two a week. I can honestly say now that it doesn't seem to have an effect one way or another. I do crave sweets less though when I don't have that sugary aspartame coursing through my veins. I actually bought a 20 oz. bottle a few weeks ago, took 3 sips and threw the rest out. It tastes much more bitter now and I usually don't finish an entire can. Good news for my bones anyway.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wrong Way Bozo

Okay, I'll be honest. I have been dreading writing this post for about a week now. Yes, I'm up a few EL-BEES but that's not really the reason for my dread. I am really embarrassed at this point at my apparent "falling off the wagon". I know every dieter has her ups and downs but I am in a true slump here. I used to be able to muster up enthusiasm at the prospect of starting anew and now it is fleeting, if it appears at all. I am up four-and-a-half lbs. since my last post. Yep, that's two-and-a-quarter lbs. per week...not an easy feat. I won't make excuses here because I have none. Yes, I ate and drank all kinds of naughty things over the long weekend and no, I didn't exercise (except for once). In my (attempt at a misguided) defense, I decided to kick my exercise plan up a notch and jog on the treadmill for 30 minutes rather than walking. By later that afternoon, I had serious hip pain. By the next morning, I felt so stiff I could barely walk and actually had to take two doses of Advil. Pathetic. Now that I think about it, my husband didn't seem all that surprised at how out of shape I really am. Curses.

I have felt really miserable physically these past few weeks. The more "junk" I eat, the worse I feel, yet I keep doing it. I'm like a robot who is pre-programmed to put fatty crap in my mouth. I consciously know (I actually THINK about it) before I eat that big ol' bowl of pasta (or whatever crap happens to be placed to my lips at the moment) that I will regret it...yet I do it anyway. And to make matters worse, I continue to eat it even when I'm full...as if finishing said meal will prove some kind of depraved point that I really am the world's most rebellious dieter. It's really maddening. Again with the self-sabotage. I mean really...seriously? I wish you could hear the loud sigh I just let out. That about sums it up people.

As for how to get back on track, I wish I knew. I guess tomorrow is yet another day. That's the good news. I promise you this though...no matter how futile my attempts to lose weight may be in the future, I will keep writing about it here - and with more consistency than I have these past couple of weeks (my computer really was down but is fixed now). Hooray!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Human Nature

Hey folks...sorry about my extended absence; my computer has been down for over a week. Hey, that's my story and I'm sticking to it. Besides, it happens to be the truth.

I will start off with the positive. Thanks to my recent bout of stomach flu this week, I am down to 157. The bad and the ugly...I have been eating pretty crappy these past couple of weeks. Two weeks ago now, I went hiking with a friend. We had a frank talk about our weight loss struggles...T has lost over 40 lbs. towards her goal of 55 and is truly an inspiration to me. Like most mortals who lose weight, she has slipped a bit and gained a few back but is looking to re-motivate herself to reach her goal. Sound familiar? I told her I felt stuck and unmotivated. I told her I did not know how to get un-stuck and she, of course, sympathized. By the end of our hike, I felt re-energized and ready to get back on that horse (not eat it). We made a friendly bet too, that whoever could lose more weight in 2 weeks would treat the other to a pedicure. This Sunday those 2 weeks will be up and I have a bad feeling that her toes will benefit at my expense. T did spend last weekend at the US Open so my only hope is that she too, drank beer and ate fried food all weekend, thus putting us on a level playing field. To make matters worse, we went by our weight that morning, at which point I was at my lowest (although I'm down 1.8 measly lbs. since then). If not for my flu bug, I'd probably be UP four lbs.

I don't know where I lost my newly acquired motivation or how I lost it so quickly...but it seems I am truly stuck. For some reason, I've lost the will to lose weight at this point in time. Human nature sucks.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Being a Size 2 Does Not (Necessarily) = Happiness

As I said yesterday, I came across an article about Bachelorette Ali wanting to lose weight...15 lbs. to be exact. On last week's episode, she donned a bikini (see below) and I thought to myself at the time, she looks really good. Healthy. Confident. But not SUPER skinny as many women have tended to be in the past. I actually thought, now there's a girl who is an inspiration to all women in the sense that she's not afraid to show her body on national TV (and she's not a size 2).

The article stated...and I quote..."She’s a size 6 and not meant to be super tiny, but she wants to lose weight.” Okay, I realize by many peoples' standards in America (and elsewhere) that size 6 is not TINY but it's pretty dang small. I'm sure she weighs no more than 125 lbs. This struck me. I went to save the picture (to post it later) and when I clicked to save it, the word "fattie" actually came up as the title. WTH? When I went to look at the article again today, Hollywood Life (consider the source, I guess) had re-run the article and I found this picture:

Okay, I'm all for good health and feeling good about yourself through fitness and diet, but she looks great! And happy! Just another day in the life for us women... having our confidence shattered in the name of "beauty".

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Misery Loves Company

So. Despite the fact that I don’t have much to report in-as-far as progress, I have been looking forward to writing this all week. I’ve just been crazy busy and frankly, more tired than usual. Could it be…oh, I don’t know…the hundred and ten degree weather here?! So sick of it already and summer’s barely even started. But I digress.

I am down to 158 as of this morning…God only knows how. Although I haven’t been counting calories for the past couple of weeks (maybe longer), I’ve somehow managed to maintain. I’ve consistently stayed between 159-161 the past several weeks. I do realize that my goal at this point isn’t to “maintain”…in case you’re wondering. But the way things have been going, I’m just glad I haven’t ballooned back up to 170. Feels like I should have. And now for my confession. Forgive me father for I have sinned. I have had approximately 6 diet Cokes in the past 2 weeks AND I have only walked on the treadmill ONCE in the past 8 days (I did walk/run today for 30 minutes though). Sorry, that’s my strict Catholic upbringing rearing its ugly head.

On another note, I watched the new show Losing it with Jillian Michaels last week (I tivo’d it this week but haven’t gotten around to watching it yet). At any rate, although I think Ms. Michaels is WAY over the top, so many things she says resonates with me. Unlike the Biggest Loser, which I admit I have only watched about three episodes of during its entire run, her new shows focuses more intensely not just on the weight and exercise part of the equation, but on how these miserable people got to where they are. The family she visited was Italian and they were all significantly overweight, with the exception of the daughter who had had gastric bypass and was at a healthy weight now. The opening scene is of the family meeting with their doctor. She tells them that as obese as they are, they are at high risk for heart attack, heart disease, stroke…the list goes on. She reveals that the mom’s body fat is 56%. I didn’t even think that was possible. Throughout the show you find out that the couple had lost their first son a month after he was born with serious complications and they had never really grieved his death. The father refused to talk about it AT ALL to the mother, which in turn, left her feeling depressed and alone. He couldn’t even bring himself to buy a gravestone for the poor baby. Enter Jillian. She takes them immediately to their neighborhood gymnasium for some sweat-inducing agony. Within minutes, both the mom and the dad are ready to throw in the proverbial towel. Jillian screams at them. Their daughter screams at them. Finally they relent and run after Jillian telling her that they promise they will persevere if she’ll just give them another chance. There is a lot of counseling throughout the show, and by counseling I mean the family sitting around with Jillian crying and discussing their feelings. I cried through the whole damn show. I could relate to so much of what they said. And in the end, none of them felt worthy of good health. It really dawned on me as I was watching that the reason I probably stayed overweight so long is that I too, never felt like I was good enough to look and feel good about myself. My fat was literal padding to the outside world and to my emotions. Deep. When Jillian came back six weeks later (their goal was to lose about 50 lbs. each prior to the daughter’s wedding), they had all reached or exceeded their goals. Talk about motivation....

I also read a story about the Bachelorette today that really upset me…they actually called her fat even though she’s a size 6. Not cool. This is what makes girls and women in our society ultra-obsessed with dieting, plastic surgery, etc. I will write about it in the next day or two. Promise.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

My AHA Moment

Okay, I’m finally almost back down to where I was two weeks ago (I weighed 159.2 this morning). Over the holiday weekend, I ate and drank many, many things that no self-respecting “healthy” person would. I had numerous beers (Berry Weiss…mmmm), strawberry shortcake (the cake was sugar free – I wasn’t paying attention to the label apparently but in my defense, I was in a bakery, not the diabetic snack aisle at Walgreens), a cheeseburger, French toast…the list goes on. AND to make matters worse, I only walked on the treadmill for 30 minutes ONE day last week. That means I did not meet my goal of “walking at least 30 minutes every day”. Far from it. I did, however, take the stairs every single day at work last week (an average of 4 times per day…in 4” heels, no less) and did 20 reps of reverse sit-ups and push ups one day, thank you very much. There you have it.

You know how I lament almost every week about the fact that I don’t understand why I sabotage my efforts all the time? Well, I think I finally figured it out. Okay, I didn’t figure it out ~ it was pointed out to me by a newcomer to my blog. Thanks J! “J” is a very analytical person. She has a way of separating herself from the underlying nonsense and taking things for what they are…it’s her job, after all…and she is very good at her job. At any rate, she works with our company and was in one day last week when the subject of my blog came up. She emailed me the next day saying she had read it and pointed out the following. J says, “When we talked this morning, we agreed that motivation is EVERYTHING (with that, all else is possible). So the trick is sustaining the motivation. It seems like the motivation to sustain the diet (aka lifestyle change) is different than the motivation to start the diet. To start a diet, I have to hit a point that I call ‘the limit of self-loathing.’ But this disgust goes away once I look a little less bloated. Then I need some other kind of motivation to continue (e.g. near-term event involving photos that will be shown in perpetuity). This doesn't last of course, so the overindulgent eating resumes...” It’s so simple…so true, yet I couldn’t connect the dots until now. Once I lost 15 pounds, I started feeling better about myself. My clothes weren’t tight anymore; I liked what I saw in the mirror, etc. so some of that “self-loathing” dissipated. Hence, I would start eating worse again. I’d think to myself…man, I look pretty good…one burrito can’t hurt. Bingo! If I was in a cartoon right now, there would totally be a light bulb above my head.

Now…how to motivate myself to CONTINUE eating right while I start to feel better about my body. Well, one BIG motivation is the fact that I have to endure wearing hideous clothes every day right now (most circa 2008, gasp!) and the few outfits that aren’t hideous, I’m forced to wear twice a week. Since I gave away my wardrobe (or at least most of it), I have pledged to “make due” until I lose another 30 lbs. and can restock my closet. That in itself should be a huge motivator. I mentioned the pictures we’re having taken in October…another motivator. I would love to have a picture of my husband and me where I don’t look like an oompa loompa (e.g. our wedding pictures) and a family picture I’d actually WANT to hang on my wall. In general, I would like to stop threatening anyone who points a camera in my direction. Other than that, I will have to dig down deep to find more inspiration to keep going down this road. It’s a long journey….like walking across America or “finding yourself.” It’s a journey that I hope ends at 130 lbs., like it should, and not with me taking a detour to a burger joint somewhere out in the boondocks.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The Ugly Truth

Sorry it's been a while. I really have no excuse other than to say that life sometimes gets in the way of my extracurricular activities...blogging being one of them. I am also sorry to say that I am up 3 lbs. from this time last week. Again, I have no excuse. I have been eating poorly, drinking cocktails and skipping the workouts. I am just in a funk and need to snap out of it NOW. I won't go into the gory details but here's a brief list of my indiscretions this past week: I ate TWO Hershey bars (shared them with my son but let's be honest, I ate most of them), three slices of frozen pizza on two separate occasions, chips and salsa, a piece of fried chicken, Coldstone and a bowl of ice cream at home another night. I also had at least 5 beers (most were not light either) and 3 vodka drinks.

As I just typed all the stuff I ate/drank last week, I feel sick to my stomach. Why oh why would I do that? Why is it such a struggle to continuously eat well? If I had eaten ice cream once and a slice of pizza, that would be one thing. But I ate crap every day last week and I can't for the life of me grasp why I would derail myself like that, especially when I was doing so well.

But I can't dwell on my "off" week. I will pick myself up, dust myself off and get going again. I have had an extremely difficult time getting up to walk this past week and have only been on the treadmill once. It is my goal for the rest of the week to walk for at least 30 minutes every day. That means tonight too since I "slept in" this morning. I did take the stairs this morning at work (we're on the 6th floor) and plan to take them the rest of the week as well.

Originally, my goal was to lose 40 (44 to be exact) LBS. prior to turning 40 next May. The deadline has moved up folks. I just scheduled a really great photographer (shout out to Laura @ Laura Winslow Photography) to take family pictures on October 24th. That gives me 5 months to slim down to my old, photogenic self...6 lbs. a month. I think that's doable and I'm happy to have an "event" to strive for.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Good Riddance

For the last few posts I’ve been talking about how big my clothes are. Yes, they were still somewhat wearable…my pants weren’t around my knees or anything...but last weekend I discovered that I could pull down my jeans without unbuttoning them and my shirts were all starting to look like throwbacks to Flashdance. So I decided to take the plunge and give most of my wardrobe away to a friend. I got rid of almost everything (with the exception of t-shirts and a few sundresses, etc.)…even gave her some winter duds that I know will be WAY too big by the time they’re back in season in AZ. There’s no turning back now. When I told my mom she said, “Maybe you should’ve held onto them…just in case” to which I replied, “no, no, no, no, NO!” I will never be that weight again ~ trust me. So I went to Target (where else does one buy cheap, disposable clothes?) and got myself THREE pairs of drawstring linen pants in - WAIT FOR IT - size MEDIUM and a pair of size 10 jeans. I have bought exactly one pair of size 10 pants in the last several years and I have to believe they just ran big. It's these little milestones that keep me going, kids.

I never get that. You hear about people losing 80 lbs. or 100 lbs. or even more and then gaining it all back. And although I’ve gained back lost weight many, many times, we're talking about 15 or 20 lbs. – not 100! It seems implausible; like if you gained back 10 you’d say to yourself “self - this is not good…must start diet again”. Maybe that is the real difference between “dieting” and permanently changing your eating/drinking habits. If you start eating pizza and tacos for every meal again, you will gain it back. As I’ve said before, so much of losing weight is a state of mind. I'd argue that at least 85% of it is mentality. If you’re not “ready” mentally to lose the weight, you won’t…at least not long-term. You can do the "work" but you won't make it for the long haul and you won't keep it off. I think that’s why losing it slowly and still indulging here and there helps to really ingrain good eating habits into your daily life and keeps you from falling off the wagon and doing irreparable damage later.

Speaking of indulging – I did enjoy a few adult beverages last Saturday night. I had two Leine's Summer Shandys and a vodka soda. Now for the (really) bad part. I made a Tombstone pizza and ate half in my muddled state. When Sunday morning rolled around, I had a massive headache. That’s what happens when you drink as little/rarely as I do. I was over at my parents’ house in the pool and all of a sudden it hit me like a ton of bricks. I knew what I had to do. I don’t keep soda in my house anymore (for good reason) but the 'rents do. I had a Pepsi Max (no calories, no sugar). No kidding. It really helped my headache and it was nice to drink something other than water or carbonated water for a change but I also found it sickly sweet and didn’t even finish the whole can. There you go. I feel much better having confessed my sin - as usual. I wanted a Diet Coke yesterday (here we go again…) but didn’t have one. And I know I won’t have any again for a long time…or at least for the foreseeable future.

Was down to 159 today. Like I said, slow but steady.

Friday, May 14, 2010


Well, I finally hit my short-term goal...dropping below 160. My weigh-in this morning revealed the lovely number of 159.8! This means I am officially the thinnest I have been in about 10 years...maybe even 12! I couldn't be more surprised! After my big "cheat" day the other day, I expected it to take another week and I was feeling pretty depressed about that. It is just not fun losing weight, gaining it back and then having to re-lose it again the next week. I'm sure many of you can attest to this.

I ate really well yesterday though - stayed at around 1,000 calories. I didn't walk on the treadmill last night as I hoped to...it just got too late once the kiddo was in bed. At any rate, before bed last night I thought, I'll just weigh myself quick. I know that weighing yourself at night (when you usually weigh the most) goes against all logic but sometimes I do it anyway...just to see how much I'll lose by the next morning or to motivate myself for the next day. Sometimes I'm just curious to know how much I've gone up that day as a result of the hamburger I ate for lunch. Stupid...I know. But I'm sure all you "dieters" out there can relate...sometimes you just get obsessed with the scale. Sometimes I weigh myself 3 times a day - just for fun. So anyway, I get on and it says 159.8. I try to contain myself. I feel shock and disbelief. I immediately picture my future self in size 4 jeans. I go downstairs and calmly tell my husband the magic number, adding "IF it's accurate". Now there's really no reason my scale wouldn't be accurate - it's brand new. But I am having some difficulty comprehending the numbers at certain times. For example, yesterday morning I weighed 162.2 and I thought GREAT - now I get to re-lose the same pound and a half again this week/end! Then last night - 159.8. WTH?? How can I go DOWN that much during the day?! My friend at work tells me it's absolutely possible. She says that sometimes "it just takes time to catch up with you". I guess I can buy that.

I walked on the treadmill for 30 minutes this morning (even though I had planned to do an hour) and weighed myself again before my shower. Still said 159.8. I'll be damned! I guess the thing IS working. I told my husband YET AGAIN this morning and he replied, "I know...you told me." I'm just so excited! I've told anyone that will listen today...it's a BIG deal!

Note to self: Do not watch cooking shows while walking on the treadmill.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

My Birthday (Food) Hangover

1.the disagreeable physical aftereffects of excess

Okay...as some of you know, yesterday was my birthday. Two weeks ago now, I planned lunch out with a friend and happy hour after work with some girlfriends. I never made a conscious decision to take the entire day off from "dieting" though until I woke up yesterday morning. The day did not start on a good note. I woke up too tired to work out and decided I'd let myself sleep in...after all, you only have one birthday a year right? In the shower that morning, I suddenly thought...hmmmm....a Starbucks coffee and one of their old-fashioned doughnuts (my favorite) would just start the day off perfectly. Unfortunately, I had such a stomach ache by the time I was near a Starbucks that I skipped it. Fate?!

So lunchtime rolls around and my friend asks where I want to go - "anywhere" she says..."my treat". Well, if I'm going to cheat, I might as well go for the gold...so I choose Teepee...my favorite Mexican restaurant. I'm so hungry from missing breakfast because of my tummy ache that I proceed to eat half the bowl of chips slathered in their amazing salsa. I order two sour cream enchiladas and rice. Back in the day...before I was eating healthy, I often thought that two of these babies was just too much. I'd be full all afternoon...like miserably full. But I ordered two anyway telling myself that I would not get to eat this again for a VERY LONG TIME. I guess I am a glutton for punishment...what can I say? By the time we get back to the office, true to past experience, I am miserably full. So full that when happy hour rolls around at 3:30, the thought of having a drink is not even pleasant in the least.

I get to happy hour and order a raspberry lambic, one of my favorite beverages. It's kind of like a cross between a beer and red wine - malt liquor. My girlfriends order a pub board that has soft pretzels, cheese, nuts, etc. I have to try one piece of the pretzel with a little cheese...it looks so good. I am still full (although I'm not miserable at this point). Then I order another raspberry lambic. All in all, happy hour is not a disaster. Like it really matters at this point anyway. I probably ingested 2,000 calories (or more?!) at lunch.

After happy hour I pick up two thin crust gourmet pizzas for my birthday dinner with my family. And 9 mini Tammie Coe cupcakes (my absolute fav). I eat a piece and a half of the margherita pizza (it was cut really small though). Then I have one mini cupcake and a couple of bites of my son's. Oh, and some of my dad's frosting. He scooped most of it off - just wrong.

All day yesterday and last night I felt bloated and gross. I woke up this morning still feeling that way. If there is such a thing as a food hangover, I definitely had one. I haven't worked out yet today but hope I will muster up the energy to walk on my treadmill tonight. You see, I'm not a morning person AT ALL and 5:30 a.m. is just tough for me...although God knows I really try. I had an internal tug-of-war this morning about whether to weigh myself or to just wait a day or two when I've had the chance to try to minimize some of the damage. I'm sure you already know what I did. Yep, I weighed myself anyway...couldn't help it. Now for some strange and totally unrealistic reason I half expected the scale to go up like 4 lbs. It went up 1 since yesterday morning.

I hope I learned a lesson here. Gluttony is one of the deadly sins for a reason. And if that's not enough, it's just not worth feeling yucky for a day and a half.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Up and Down

I’ll try not to let my bloated stomach dictate the tone of this post...but it won’t be easy. My stomach sticking out is a huge reminder (pun intended) this afternoon of how much I’ve botched my diet this past week. This brings me to the subject I want to write about now. I believe it was back in the first post or two that I talked about knowingly sabotaging yourself. This is something that’s been a consistent theme for me throughout my weightloss quest and has resurfaced again this week. I have been making excuses…e.g. retirement party, company over, Mother’s Day, birthdays…the list goes on. I have been ignoring my inner voice again and again in favor of cake, pizza, nachos, beer, etc. Why?? I know that after I eat this crap, the scale will tip the wrong way but I do it anyway and I really cannot for the life of me grasp why. Do I want to stay overweight? Do I just not care? Am I afraid of succeeding? I don’t know the answer here folks. If you do, please fill me in.

I was up 3 lbs. yesterday morning. I really did have a fun weekend and considering what I all ate and drank, it could’ve been much worse. Thanks to a healthful diet yesterday and walking on my new treadmill nearly every day since I got it (okay – I didn’t at all over the weekend but I wasn't feeling well), I was back down today. I now have just 2 more ounces to go until I reach that “summit” I talked about last week. I plan to reach it this week – no excuses.

Although I’m only down 13.5 pounds since I started this blog about 7 weeks ago, I am down almost 25 from my heaviest weight a couple of years ago. There is some part of me that says 25 lbs. is so great and I should just be happy at my current weight. I think this is the part of me that just wants to eat junk and drink diet Coke again. I will not listen to these voices. I am determined to make it much, much further.

As I said before, I’ve been getting a lot of compliments lately – “you look great!” or “wow – you have lost so much weight!” to which I always respond (I am terrible with compliments...always have been), “yeah, but I still have 30 lbs. to go.” People generally respond to this by saying, “30 lbs? You can’t possibly lose that much more…you’ll be a stick”. I reassure them by letting them know that losing another 30 lbs. would put me in the average range for my height (see horrible obesity scale here). In fact, it puts me closer to the high end of what I should weigh according to the American Health Association.

On a positive note, my clothes feel like they’re getting bigger and bigger (despite the fact that the scale isn’t going down all that quickly). I’ve almost given away all my pants and quite a few shirts about 5 times this past week. Unfortunately none of my friends seem to be a size 12/14 or they could inherit a pretty nice wardrobe right about now. I am waiting a bit longer though as I can’t possibly afford to replace my wardrobe once, much less twice. I suppose I could go out and buy a bunch of stretchy Mumu’s…always a popular choice for AZ in the summer...but somehow I don’t think that would go over well in my place of employment.

I will end by saying that tomorrow is my birthday - read BIRTHDAY HAPPY HOUR. Hopefully I won't have to re-lose all this weight again next week but I can't make any promises...life is meant to be lived.

Monday, May 3, 2010

I'm baaaaack.....

Sorry it's been a while...daily life as a full-time mom and corporate slave certainly takes its toll - some weeks more than others...and this was just one of those weeks. Anyway, I'm back and I've brought my positive attitude with me as promised! I'm happy to report that I have made some progress again and have lost another 2 lbs. For the first time since I started this lifestyle change, I actually 1) believe that's really what it is (I'll go over the evidence in a minute) and 2) am starting to notice some positive changes in myself. I'll start with #2. I'm down a total of 12.4 lbs. in the past 6 weeks and as you know, although the first 10 lbs. fell off quickly, I've been kind of stuck since then. Because I lost the first 8 lbs. in nearly the first 2 weeks, my pants have been sagging in the butt for a month now. I vowed not to buy any new "transitional" pants until I lose another 10 lbs. or until my pants fall down, whichever comes first. At any rate, I walked by a mirrored building today (one that I visit on a somewhat frequent basis) and as usual, I glanced at my reflection. I happen to be wearing a dress today (I'm challenged right now in the area of britches as I mentioned...so I'm much better dressed these days) and for the first time in a very long time (probably 8 or 9 years) I actually wasn't put off by what I saw. That's the best I can describe it. For once I didn't say to myself, "OMG your a$$ is huge" or "your stomach is sticking out past your boobs"! I looked and thought "you are STARTING to look really good". There wasn't anything that negative that jumped out at me, which felt nice. Hey, baby steps. I'm starting to feel like I have a flatter tummy and like I look thinner in the face (several people have actually told me that recently) too.

Okay - regarding reference #1 above - dieting is a difficult word all around. It's difficult to mentally process, it's difficult to do and it's just an evil word that hangs over your head willing you to fail. A "diet" is something that is temporary. It says that you cannot eat anything fried ever again - at least until said diet is over. At which point you can eat whatever you want again with the understanding that you will gain back any modest amount of weight (plus more usually) that you lost on your "diet". I finally believe that this new way of eating has become a lifestyle change for me. I still haven't had a sip of soda and it's becoming second nature to grab a bottle of water or order it in a restaurant. In addition, I am still eating "bad" things here and there...which may sound negative but is really a positive thing. I know what you're thinking...."Girl needs to eat...She's losing her mind!" but I can assure you that I'm right...or at least this is the right thing for me. I've had one or two people (I won't mention any names) come down on me for that. One friend said that I should NEVER EVER EVER have pizza. Well, first...she obviously has much more willpower than I do and second, I don't want to live a life where I can't have an occasional slice of pizza. I honestly believe that you can still lose weight even if you eat a handful of potato chips and a scoop of ice cream here and there...as long as 95% of the time, you're eating well. And I'm living proof. I may not be losing it as quickly as I'd like or as fast as others do, but I can't worry about them. I have to focus on what works for me and what will make my weight-loss successful. And for me...not feeling deprived all the time goes a long way to that end. Besides, I'm still losing at a steady pace and if I only lose two pounds a week, I'm okay with that. Not depriving myself of everything all the time will ensure that once I lose the weight, I will have the mindset to keep it off...and let's face it, that is another animal all together. When I first started eating more healthfully, my dad said to me, "That's the thing about these 'diets'...will you ever be able to eat normally again"? Normally? I thought about that. I said, only half believing it at the time, "Well...yes. But instead of eating a bowl of ice cream I will have a scoop. And instead of eating a bag of chips, I will have 4". And the good news is...once you've gotten used to eating healthfully, even for a short while...you crave less junk and four potato chips is enough.

I had friends over Saturday night for drinks and appetizers. I won't go into the boring details of what I ate and drank (I'm pretty sure that part of this blog may have lulled readers to sleep in the past) but I will say it was not a "healthful" evening. I had two vodka drinks and a few really unhealthy apps...but only a few. BUT...the next day I had fruit, salad and cottage cheese...despite the fact that my family had burgers on the grill - my favorite thing. And that's what progress and lifestyle change is in the dieting arena...only eating a little bit of the bad things and only once in a while, taking responsibility for it when you do and getting back on track the next day. That, my friends, is the definition of living a healthful lifestyle...everything in moderation.

On a side note, I bought a treadmill this weekend and walked on it for the first time this morning for 40 minutes. I'll keep you posted (obviously...duh) but I hope this helps kick my weight loss back into gear! It's my goal to be down two more pounds by Saturday morning...at which point I will weigh less than I have in the past 10 years or so. When I've lost weight in the past (and gained it back), I never got below this magic number. It will be like reaching the first summit on the climb up the mountain. I can't wait to finally make it to the top of that summit...and to celebrate with a diet coke!

Just kidding.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Something's Gotta Give

Remember that "mood" I was in when I last posted? Well, I'm sorry to say that it has not gone away. Must be the curse still. I'm normally a pretty light-hearted person (admittedly with crotchety patches interjected here and there) but I'm feeling really ornery this week. And yes, I've gotten plenty of sleep although people keep asking me that. Apparently I have puffy eyes and it looks like I've "been up all night". Whatever.

I half thought about just lying and saying I was down another pound...just so I didn't have to explain myself, but you know I would never lie to you. So here goes. We had company in town all weekend and although I didn't eat super healthy, I didn't throw all caution to the wind either. Without getting into too much detail, because as I stated...I'm in no mood today, I will recap the highlights (or in this case, the low lights). Thursday night for dinner I had pizza - about 5 squares - 2 pepperoni and 3 Canadian bacon and pineapple (they were thin crust). I also had two glasses of Cabernet.

Friday I ate cereal for breakfast (think high fiber) with fat free milk and a tangerine. I also had coffee. One thing I will let you in on is that I have stopped using Splenda in my coffee and am getting used to just creamer. Hopefully someday I'll be able to cut that out too. I really admire all you black coffee drinkers out there - wish I could be as cool as you. For lunch I had pizza again (thin crust organic). I ate four slices - two chicken sausage and fennel and two roasted garlic and kale. I also had a small summer salad with vinaigrette. To drink - iced green tea (I hope to make this a more frequent occurrence - loved it). For dinner that night I had tequila lime chicken fettuccine. I won't even try to justify this....other than to reiterate that I had family in town and I didn't pick the menu. Alas, it wasn't even whole wheat pasta.

Saturday I can't remember what I had for breakfast or lunch (sad face here). No, I did not write it down or anything this weekend for that matter. Do you have to bust my chops on everything? Sheesh. For dinner that night we had all the relatives over and made pulled pork sandwiches (with bbq sauce). I also had some potato chips and dip. Furthermore, I had two grape vodka and Pellegrino drinks (thus the lapse in judgment about the chips and dip). Pretty healthy as far as alcohol goes. My parents brought over dessert - chocolate molten cake and ice cream. This is probably my favorite dessert of all time and I did not have one bite. Impressive methinks.

Sunday I had chicken chow mein at brunch (don't even ask) and it was really salty and delicious. I didn't make it so I'm not really sure about the extent of how healthy (or unhealthy) it was, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Sunday night for dinner I had a hamburger on the grill (topped with cheese) - it was organic, lean meat. I did have a whole wheat bun. On the side, I had baked beans, asparagus and a few pickles.

Yesterday I had cereal with fat free milk and a banana for breakfast. I also had a tall Starbucks non-fat vanilla latte. For lunch I had Subway - 6" wheat with turkey and ham, a little bit of mayo and lettuce. No chips and water to drink. For dinner last night we had steak and I'll admit, I pigged out. I was starving. I also had TWO helpings of garlic mashed potatoes and some corn. I used real butter on both the potatoes and corn. Shameless...I know.

In a nutshell, I'm still the same weight I was last week but I'm not sure if it's because of the water weight (associated with my "friend") or because I haven't really "dieted" this week. Either way, it sucks. And there you have it. Tune in next time where your author promises to get a hold of herself and embrace her (formerly) positive attitude!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Sometimes That's Just the Way it Goes...

Okay, I'll be honest...I'm kind of in a funk today. I thought I was doing pretty well on this diet (ahem...lifestyle change). I mean, losing 2-3 lbs. per week (without exercise, mind you), = some pretty good willpower...at least it does to me.

This week I've been anticipating (WARNING: this will be TMI for a few of you men out there) a visit from my favorite Aunt and I've slacked a bit. I want to reassure you that when I say I've "slacked", I have not eaten a donut or even had a diet coke...I have just consumed more pasta than normal (albeit whole wheat) and have snacked a tad bit more on items that did not fall into the fruits and vegetables category. At any rate...I'm not down this week so far but I'm not up either...which is a feat considering water weight is a given during this special time.

I want to do something a little different here. I'm not in the mood to relay all my food choices but I'll just say I have been relatively consistent with other weeks. Sometimes when you're in a funk, the best thing to do is to focus on the positive...so here goes:

1) There were cupcakes (with frosting about 2 inches thick on them) at a meeting this morning and I didn't even glance at the table.

2) I've been putting less creamer in my coffee every day, thereby cutting extra sugar and calories.

3) A friend at work remarked the other day that my pants looked like they were "falling off me" and my mom said the same thing last night (I will buy a few "transitional" pairs when I lose another 10 lbs.).

4) It's okay if I don't lose every single week, as long as I keep eating well.

Sometimes, you just hit a rough patch...it's not the end of the world. This is more of an emotional one (thanks Aunt Flo) than a physical one for me. After all, I'm already almost a quarter of the way to my goal and I will succeed, even if I feel "off" for a few days.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Is This Thing Broken?

Okay...so I was really not looking forward to writing this blog. I told my mom as much at dinner last night. I did not weigh myself all weekend in anticipation that the scale would go way up thanks to my imprudent eating habits over the weekend. I was certainly expecting the worst. I didn't fall off the wagon, per se, but I did give myself much more leeway than I have been these past four weeks. I also did not write down anything over the weekend so I tried to remember today what I had eaten during the past four days...but you and I both know how well a mind that is nearly 40 works.

Friday I believe I skipped breakfast again...too busy (yeah, yeah, yeah). That day for lunch a friend/colleague of mine and I went out. We decided to go to a restaurant that's about 2 miles from the office, one we had meant to go to for the past three years but had never made it to (and incidentally will never go back to...not great). I was really hungry (since I hadn't eaten all day) and I ordered a turkey and Swiss sandwich. It had the regular fixings on it - lettuce, tomato...oh, and BBQ sauce and mayo, which I MEANT to get on the side and 86 the BBQ sauce all together but forgot. I chose cottage cheese as my side (and yes, french fries were an option). I drank water. The bread appeared to be "white" but had caraway seeds in it, which I despise...so I only ate the bread on one half. That night I met friends out for dinner at a restaurant that favors healthy fare. I ordered a vegetarian Caesar (they call it that because the dressing has no anchovies...it's a black olive dressing) and a wood-fired pizza that had red sauce, chicken sausage, mushrooms and fennel. It was delicious...ate three pieces and brought the rest home for my hubby. I had sparkling water despite the fact that one of my friends (the other wasn't drinking as she had an early race the next day) ordered a glass of red wine that looked simply divine. But I resisted. After dinner we took my son next door for ice milk - chocolate and vanilla with mini M & Ms...I had two bites.

Saturday I had half of a whole wheat English muffin for breakfast with about one TBSP of organic peanut butter and coffee. I didn't eat lunch but snacked on a banana and a huge glass of Pellegrino with lime...probably a few other small things too but my aged mind cannot recall at this point. That night was date night and my husband and I went to a steakhouse. I decided I would take the night off for all intents and purposes. First off, I ordered an orange slice martini. It was delicious! My hubby ordered a Long Island iced tea and his was so good that I ordered one after my martini. We shared it though and I only ended up drinking about a quarter of it. For an appetizer, we ordered the Mushrooms Neptune, which our 22-year-old waiter happily announced was their "signature" appetizer - mushrooms stuffed with crab and cream cheese...they were awesome! For my entree, I ordered a 7 oz. filet (the smallest on the menu) wrapped in bacon. The waiter imparted that this was the leanest cut of red meat they had...not that I asked. Great waiter BTW - why aren't there more like him?! Anyway, I could've gotten a baked potato (ho hum) but I opted for the twice-baked which was out of this world...worth each and every calorie. We did look at the dessert menu and although there were some winners on it, we decided against, which is a big deal for me...I am such a dessert person. My husband, on the other hand, could live without dessert for the rest of his life and be just fine. I felt satisfied though without it so I listened to my gut (pun intended) and informed the waiter that I had ingested my dessert before the meal (the orange slice martini).

The next day I was feeling somewhat guilty but let it go. After all, my husband and I don't go out much and when we do go out, we tend to hit Applebee's or something equally uninspiring. Hey, it's super loud in there...your two-year-old can yell as loudly as he wants and nobody will hear thanks to their cranked up 80's music. Sunday afternoon a girlfriend came over to lay out with me and was nice enough to bring us lunch. She brought turkey sandwiches (on white bread), cold pasta salad (my favorite) and fruit salad. And of course cookies (she had gotten Paradise Bakery....NOBODY can resist their cookies). The sandwich did have bacon on it but she didn't know if I wanted mayo or mustard so she ordered it dry figuring I could add my own. Normally I would've but I was so hungry that I ate half, sans mayo. I put the other half in the fridge. I had about three or four bites of pasta salad and ate the small cookie later that afternoon. I had LaCroix with it. That afternoon for a snack I also ate a banana. For dinner last night I had half of a small turkey burger, about four bites of my son's cheddar hamburger (no bun on either) and about half a cup of sweet potato fries. I baked them with a little salt, pepper and olive oil (no butter).

This morning I had coffee and half of a whole wheat pita with organic peanut butter for breakfast. I ate a banana for a mid-morning snack. For lunch I had a small, leftover turkey burger and about 12 cherry tomatoes. I was hungry again a few hours later and had 2 TBSP of organic peanut butter and a cup of fat free cocoa. I was craving chocolate and although it's not terrific, for 25 calories, it fills the void. For dinner tonight I had a salad with a few cherry tomatoes, some red onion and a small amount of shredded cheddar cheese. I had about 2 TBSPs of Light Hidden Valley Ranch on it. I also ate about 3/4 c. of whole wheat spaghetti with 1/2 c. of sauce (from the jar) and a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.

Now...back to the weigh-in this morning. I braced myself as I stepped on the scale and fully expected to gain at least 2 lbs. But instead, I had lost 5 ounces. I have no idea how or why but I weighed myself again after my shower and the same weight appeared...163.3. Maybe it will catch up with me tonight or maybe I wasn't as bad as I really thought...? I don't know. But I do know this...as much as I veered from my regular "I'm on a big diet" diet, I still ate at least 80% better than I would've over the same weekend two months ago so I guess that's something.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Average...Yet Obese

I once read that the average woman in America is 5'4 and a size 12. I have been both a size 12 (okay, or 14) and 5'4 (go figure) for most of my adult life. So I guess it shouldn't have surprised me this morning when an article I was reading stated that 63.1% of Americans are now overweight or obese. Yes, you heard me correctly - 63%! I was curious what constituted obesity in the American Health Association's eyes, so I went to the linked BMI calculator. You enter your height and weight and the calculator spits out your rating, e.g. tells you if you're fat, or as they put it "prone to health risks", average...which they refer to as "desirable" or obese. God I hate that word, it's just ugly. So first I put in my current weight (and height, obviously) to see what category I presently fall into and then I continued putting in numbers to see what category I'd be in if I gained, lost, etc. Anything above 171 and I was labeled obese...which seems harsh and is really pretty mortifying considering the fact that I've weighed more than that for most of my adult life. Jeez, I know I'm no supermodel but OBESE? Really? At my current weight of 163 lbs., I fall into the "prone to health risks" category and I will remain there until I weigh less than 148 lbs., when I'll officially become "desirable". I was curious to see what the cateogy lower than "desirable" was (fabulous?) and if you'd have to reach utter emaciation before falling into it. Turns out you are "desirable" if you fall anywhere between 107 and 148 lbs., at 5'4 anyway. This means that I am an estimated 15 lbs. heavier than the top of my "desirable" weight, which I guess I can buy...thus the diet. Seems like 107 would be an extremely low weight though for an average-build woman like me. I'm pretty sure weighing 107 would put me in about a size 0-2 and although that's apparently "DESIRABLE" to the AHA, I'd be ecstatic with a 4 or 6!

Okay, now to the boring stuff...although I did lose another two pounds in the past two or three days courtesy of the stomach flu. I'm officially down (I gained a lb. or so back over the weekend but I prefer to think of this as a natural fluctuation) 10.2 lbs. total for the month (it'll be 4 weeks on Saturday since I started this diet...I mean (ahem) LIFESTYLE CHANGE. Saturday for breakfast I ate a whole wheat English muffin with peanut butter and water (no coffee). That day for lunch I had a whole wheat pita pizza with green olives, onion, mushrooms, sauce (from the jar) and about 3/4 c. low-fat mozzarella. I also finished off the last two bites of my son's ham and cheese sandwich and a remaining handful of blueberries. For dinner that evening, I had chicken fajitas on the grill with a little bit of salsa and light sour cream (probably only a TBSP each) and 10 or 12 tortilla chips with more salsa and more sour cream. I was starving...that's what happens when I wait too long to eat...I cheat! I had a LaCroix sparkling water with dinner too. Then after dinner, I broke my own rule and had a vodka/soda/lemon - but just one. No guilt - I've been under a lot of stress and needed to take the edge off.

Sunday I had coffee with CM and Splenda and it would appear - no breakfast. I know what you're thinking...'doesn't this dummy know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day?...It's what gets your metabolism going'. And yes, I know both of these things but like all full-time mothers and wives, I sometimes don't have time for breakfast, despite my best intentions. For lunch I had a whole wheat pita pizza again, but this time just with sauce and cheese...oh, and a string cheese too. I'm lazy that way. I don't like to put a lot of thought into what I'm making/eating so when I find something I like, that I also happen to have the ingredients for, I just go with it. That afternoon for a snack I ate a 1/2 c. of this new organic fruity, nutty, fiber-y cereal I bought and a 1/2 c. of fat free milk. I also had a sugar free chocolate Snack Pack pudding at some point that afternoon....hey, just reading it from my not-so-specific journal. That night for dinner I had a small New York strip, which incidentally was grilled to perfection, approximately 14 spears of asparaGAS and a small bowl of my son's leftover whole wheat elbow macaroni which happened to be covered it butter and Parmesan (picture me rolling my eyes here). Then, as the perfect end to the perfect day, I had 6 plain m&m's...quite possibly the world's most perfect food.

Monday I had a 1/2 c. of my healthy cereal again with 1/2 c. fat free milk for breakfast. I also had a banana and coffee (with the usual mixers). For lunch I had a salad with about 1/8 c. of feta crumbles and 6 cherry tomatoes. I spritzed it with one of those new salad spritzer dressings - the Italian one. You have to spray like 30 times to actually get the salad DAMP though so I'm pretty sure I had more than the 1g fat per-serving serving. I was so hungry about 3 hours later...I know, SHOCKER...that I had another 1/2 c. cereal covered in another 1/2 c. fat free milk. For dinner, I ate about 1 and 1/2 small grilled hamburgers dipped in ketchup and light Hidden Valley Ranch. One may have had melted cheddar on it too but my memory is foggy. Followed up with 3 m&m's. Boy, I'm sure not doing well with the no sweets, am I? Pffft.

The next two days are easy...I was sick with the stomach flu. Tuesday I had an orange, sugar free Popsicle and water. Wednesday I did eat more. Hello! Hadn't eaten in over 24 hours! I was watching the Today show that morning and their chef was making gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. Now, I'll admit...I'm one who is easily swayed by the power of suggestion. I proceeded to make myself a grilled cheese sandwich, not with Gruyere and the fancy cheeses the chef used, but with two slices of Kraft deli-style American and butter, of course. Duh. I also had a can of Campbell's chicken noodle soup - the ultimate comfort food. I polished off two more sugar free Popsicles throughout the course of the afternoon. I had enjoyed my grilled cheese so immensely that I made my kiddo one for dinner that night...well, plus the pan was still out on the stove. Why dirty more dishes if I don't have to, right? He ate about half and I ate his other half, mind you this was about 8 hours after I had my first one that day, and it was just as good.

I was still recovering from my bug today and only got down about 3 sips of my usual coffee drink. I (yet again) had no time for breakfast - too busy catching up on my emails. For lunch I had a whole wheat pita with some lean turkey, a slice of Swiss cheese and a few tomato slices. I also ate a tangerine and about half a can of LaCroix. For a snack I had a banana. For dinner tonight - back to my old standby - I made a whole wheat pita pizza but measured out the 1/4 c. sauce and 1/4 c. mozzarella. I also had one bite of my kiddo's dessert, which was chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream. I'm officially sick of eating "healthy" pizza. And that is one of my biggest challenges right now....I don't know what to eat. As you can see I've been eating next to no veggies and only a moderate amount of fruits. I wish I was one of those people who could eat salad every day but I'm just not. I'm working on coming up with a plan for this little "issue" though and will fill you in on the brilliant solution I've come up with in my next post.

Sorry this was a bit lengthy and I promise to get another post up soon so I don't have to recap my life's story next time. Peace out.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

"I'm Just One Stomach Flu Away From my Goal Weight" -The Devil Wears Prada

Good news to share...finally! Last post, even though I was sick all week (still am BTW), I hadn't lost any weight in 4 days. Since then, I'm happy to say I'm down 4 more lbs. My eating has been a little bit flawed but overall, I've had a pretty good week.

Wednesday was a good day. I had half of a whole wheat pita with light cream cheese (about 1 tsp) and some lean turkey for breakfast. I also had my coffee (with Coffee Mate and Splenda of course). For lunch I had Lipton's cup-o-noodle soup. I had a really upset tummy that day and found a box of that from God-knows-when in my cubby at work. That stuff rocks...forgot how tasty it is (that might be the cold medicine talking though). I also ate a tomato slice off of my co-workers plate (it had Italian dressing on it too...mmmm). Later that afternoon, I had a banana. For dinner I ate a chicken breast with 3/4 c. brown rice and some light soy sauce. Water with all three meals.

Thursday I had coffee (with CM and Splenda) and a banana for breakfast. That day I had lunch plans with a friend at one of my favorite restaurants. Honestly, I was worried to go there at all....my favorite/usual dishes include chicken nachos (they are organic and made with creme fraiche...the best!) and a burger with gruyere. This is a good friend of mine although one I don't see nearly as often as I'd like. Right when I see her I ask how she's been and she blurts out "I'm fat now....I've gained sooo much weight!" Now, this girl is like 5'10", long blond hair, always tanned with designer handbag in tote. She looks beautiful, as always. I don't notice the weight gain she's referring to but I do notice that she's dyed her hair a slightly darker shade than usual (I like it). I scoff and tell her she looks gorgeous. F is not only one of my prettiest friends, she's probably one of the healthiest eaters I know too. She never drinks soda (always water or iced tea) and usually orders a salad wherever we go. We start catching up with each other. She talks about her love life (gotta love them single gals) and the all the fabulous places she's traveled recently. I talk about moving, my kid and inevitably about my diet/blog (yes, my life is much less glamorous than hers). "Have you read it yet?" I ask. No, she hasn't had time. I tell her a little bit about it and why I'm doing it, yada, yada, yada. She goes on to tell me that she's had food issues for as long as she can remember. Then she starts talking about how when she was a little girl, her mom received endless compliments about how thin and beautiful she was. F says from that very early age, she remembers thinking that she didn't ever want to be anything other than those two things...she wanted to be just like her mom. She says she remembers thinking "I can't eat that...I'll get fat" (ergo I won't be as thin and beautiful as my mom is) as a very young girl. She had an irrational fear (even though she was not an overweight child) that she'd become fat and therefore undesirable. She then tells me that her mom is overweight now. I tell her that my food issues never began until my 30's and that I've generally felt okay with my body. I know this sounds like a contradiction but it's not. I am not UNhappy being overweight; I just want to be thin. There is not some thinking on my part that I will be happier once I am thinner because I'm happy now. At any rate, I did stick to my guns and ordered something healthy - grilled chicken tacos and water (same as F). I skipped the shells and ate the grilled chicken breast along with some black beans and a little pico. And I felt satisfied without feeling stuffed, like I would have if I had gotten the burger. That night I had a cup of whole wheat spaghetti with sauce from the jar and 3 Starburst jelly beans from my kid's Easter basket for dessert.

Friday was a bit worse. I had a half of a whole wheat pita for breakfast with about a TBSP of peanut butter. No coffee - I must've been sick after all. We had a work outing yesterday afternoon and went bowling (we ate lunch there too). I had 2 pieces of pizza - one cheese and one veggie (tossed the crusts) and water. I planned on either having a) one slice of cheese pizza or b) no pizza, but I was really hungry. I don't think that's all that bad considering everyone else was drinking beer too. Last night for dinner I wasn't feeling well so I just ate about a third of my son's leftover hot dog and a bite of his orange jello, before tossing the rest.

For some strange reason I was up a little over a pound this morning from yesterday. Not sure if it was the pizza (salt) or what but I really don't see how it's possible to gain that overnight. I guess that's payback for my poor decision yesterday. I'm hoping after eating healthfully today and tomorrow, I'll be back down to 164 by Monday morning.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Not One Ounce...

Sorry it's been a little while since my last post. I'm in the process of moving and as an added bonus, I've been under the weather, which incidentally has been really good for my diet because I've had no appetite these past few days. I have been doing really well with my eating with the exception of last weekend. We were busy packing on Saturday and I needed a quick lunch for my boys...McDonald's again. Hey, it's fast and easy and close to our house (not much else is). In the name of saving time and effort (most of our food was gone at this point), I broke down and ordered a double cheeseburger for myself off the dollar menu too but skipped the fries and I still haven't had a single can of soda (I can hardly believe this myself). I made up for my indiscretion that evening though. Since we were up to our eyeballs in boxes, my parents graciously invited us over for dinner (well, I actually invited us) and ordered pizza. I ordered a Greek salad for myself and didn't have a single bite of pizza.

Sunday went well and I ate healthily at both breakfast and dinner. I can't remember the details now though (I'm finally ready to admit that my memory isn't what it used to be...I blame that on having a kid and have since started writing down everything as I eat it). That night we had dinner with out-of-town friends. I had never met them before - they were friends of my husband's back from long before we had even met. Now before I get into my cheatastic meal, let me just say that I was having a really long day with all the stress that goes along with moving. Anyway, at dinner that night I had two bottles of Blue Moon (I know...not even light beer). Then the group I was with ordered an appetizer of chorizo queso. Okay, so maybe I recommended it...the stuff is amazing. I had about 3 chips and a tortilla with queso. I did order a Caesar salad for my entree though and water. Could've been much worse. Let me just get off the subject of my food diary here for a minute and relay a little story. While we were getting ready to order, F asks, "what are you gonna have?" I reply, "I'm on a diet...probably just a salad" to which she responds, "I know. I have been following your blog. And not only having I been following it, my whole office is following". Cocked eyebrow...I start thinking about this...strangers...following my every dieting misstep? Good LORD. What have I done?

Monday I ate a banana for breakfast, along with my usual coffee/Coffee Mate/splenda concoction. For lunch I had a whole wheat pita with turkey and a slice of Swiss cheese. For dinner it was a whole wheat pita (pizza-size) with sauce (from the jar), mini pepperoni and low-fat mozzarella cheese. I ate part of my son's uneaten pizza too - well, mainly just the cheese. I know, I know.

So as you can see I have done relatively well with regards to eating healthily and yet, for some mysterious and annoying reason, I haven't dropped one ounce these past 4 days. I'm trying not to get frustrated here. Maybe I just lost too much too quickly those first two weeks and my metabolism is just playing catch-up. Or maybe I've plateaued already and need to start exercising. Whatever the case may be, I'm going to stay positive and try a few new "tricks" this week...such as eating less carbs and eating more fruits and veggies again. I kind of OD'ed after those first two weeks but clearly I need to add more back into my diet again.

Friday, April 2, 2010

I McCheated...Big Time

After a long, audible sigh, I'm ready to begin writing this post. You can already see where this is going from the title. But let me start on a positive note (before we get to the ugliness)...I have lost another pound (7 total now in 13 days). Yay me!

Okay - to pick up where I left off, I had a whole wheat pita with pizza sauce (from the jar) and a half a cup of reduced fat mozzarella (a healthy, mini pizza) for dinner on Wednesday night. I also made one for my son (but added mini pepperoni to his - have you seen these? They are adorable!). I devoured mine in about 5 minutes I was so hungry (this is becoming common-place for me). He's a more discerning eater than I am these days and he casually ate two or three of his miniature slices. When he announced he was "done", I ate the rest of his...well, mainly just the cheese and pepperoni (not so much the pita). For dessert my kiddo had an M & M ice cream sandwich; it was his treat for behaving like a civilized human being at the grocery store on the way home that day. He didn't finish that either and I had 3 bites. There was still about half left but I threw it in the trash, feeling somewhat regretful that I had succumbed even to those 3 bites.

Thursday morning I had half of a whole wheat English muffin with a thin layer of light cream cheese and some lean turkey. Let me back up a second and say that when I went into the kitchen at work to make my breakfast, someone had brought in DUNKIN DONUTS! Now...doughnuts are pretty much my favorite food in the whole wide world but I somehow managed to walk by them at least 5 times yesterday and never even opened the lid (well, maybe once I did). Awesome self-control if I do say so myself. Yesterday for lunch I had a 6" sweet onion chicken teriyaki sandwich on whole wheat from Subway. I have always wanted to try this sub, even though chicken is just "meh" to me, but never have because I love their tuna and their spicy Italian - two of the worst, most fattening sandwiches they have, naturally. I had a LaCroix sparkling water with it. No soda, no chips. Which brings me to my McCheat last night. We stopped by my parents' house on the way home and by the time we were headed home it was already 7:00. Kiddo was hungry (I was beyond hungry) and there's a McDonald's on the way so I thought hey, I'll just stop and get him a happy meal and I'll make something healthy (perhaps another little pizza?) for myself after he goes to bed at 8:00. I promise you...I really thought this. But while I was in the drive-thru waiting my turn, I had a little time to ponder it and decided I would get a regular hamburger for myself too. I remembered hearing once (from an ultra-thin friend) that their hamburgers were only like 300 calories (I checked today - they only have 250 calories). I proceeded to eat the entire hamburger on the way home (keep in mind we only live 4 blocks away). After my son finished his dinner (that's code for "ate half"), I ate his remaining two chicken McNuggets and about 12 of his french fries. Then I had ONE (I swear) mini whopper egg. *Another audible sigh*

This little indiscretion, however, has taught me a valuable lesson. When I eat nothing between lunch and dinner, I am so hungry by the time I get home that I put myself at risk of grabbing a bag of potato chips out of the pantry (I wouldn't have them in the house at all if I didn't live with other people who have their weight under control) and eating half the bag. Through this experience, I have come to realize that I need to eat something before I leave the office every day. I need to arrive at home (or wherever I'm going) about half full so I will not make hasty decisions that I will come to regret. And I plan to do just that from here on out. Strangely enough, I don't seem to have as much of a problem on the weekends. I think it's because I'm not as rushed. Rushing causes mistakes - and dieting is no exception to this rule.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Proof is in the Pudding

Since my last post, I've lost 3 more lbs. (6 total now) and have been feeling really good. The headaches are finally gone and I'm beginning to feel the results a tiny bit with the reward of looser pants and more energy. I just wanted to clear the air here and say that I am no longer doing the cleanse diet - I only lasted 3 days on it and felt horrible. Besides, this is a marathon, not a sprint...so why should I feel crappy...even for 7 days? If you have been following and reading my previous posts, you know that I have been eating balanced meals of protein, veggies and fruit. And that's about it.

As I said in my last post, I've been really bad about writing things down recently but I'll try to recap my diet these past few days. Monday I skipped breakfast, not intentionally, but because I was busy and preoccupied. I'm sure I had coffee although I seriously can't recall at this point. Monday for lunch I ate a half of a turkey sandwich with a schmear of mayo and a slice of Swiss cheese and a tangerine. That night for dinner I had a salad with a chicken breast, red peppers, cherry tomatoes, a small amount of shredded cheddar and light Italian dressing. After dinner my sweet tooth was really aching (even more than usual). I desperately wanted a bite of my son's dessert - Snack Pack chocolate pudding. I may even be guilty of licking the lid when I opened it for him. Yes, I'm aware that people everywhere do this but they are not in my unfortunate, non-dessert-eating shoes. When he didn't finish it, I was sooooo tempted to take the last three bites...but I did not. Not sure where my strength came from...probably knowing that I'd have to confess my sin here.

Tuesday I had a pear and a banana for breakfast, along with my coffee (and coffee mate), and a whole wheat turkey pita with a slice of Swiss cheese for lunch. I also had a La Croix sparkling water with natural lemon flavor. It's no diet coke but I'm missing that less and less every day. For a snack I had string cheese. Last night when I got home I was starving. I fell ever-so-slightly off the wagon. As I was searching for something to feed my kiddo for dinner, I caught sight of several off-limit items in my pantry ~ a box of Triscuits, a box of Kraft mac and cheese, a month-old Hershey bar...I knew that I had to eat something healthy right then or I'd make a bad decision. I was not in the mood for lettuce (yet again) and the chicken breasts my husband grilled especially for me the night before did not look appealing at all. This is where my best laid plans went slightly awry. I ate about 10 Pepperidge Farm BAKED Parmesan crackers (the serving size was 20 if that makes you feel any better - it certainly does me) and 2 frozen chicken taquitos (not THAT bad...we were out of light sour cream and salsa). Like I said, it could've been worse. I could've eaten that Hershey bar.

Today I had half a plum for breakfast (it wasn't great) and a cup of coffee with coffee mate and Splenda. I gave up Splenda a couple of months before I even started this diet in lieu of real sugar, which I heard is healthier. I'm back on it now...at least for the time being. You see, coffee is like my dessert at this point and I need it sweet, thus the CM and Splenda. It's the only thing keeping me sane. I had a chicken breast for lunch today with a bunch of cherry tomatoes and some red peppers (raw). I topped the veggies with light Italian dressing. I also had a club soda from downstairs. Although I'm not satisfied (one of my friends just came over and was talking about having a piece of chocolate out of some random co-worker's drawer), I'm full. I think this is an important distinction, especially for a dieter. Sometimes you just WANT to eat. It's a complicated tug of war between the brain and the stomach. I don't pretend to understand all the physiological nuances of why we want certain foods when, but I do know that changing your way of thinking about food is critical. Food is fuel...nothing more. In many cultures, and America is no exception, food is made and eaten for enjoyment. And for all the people around the world who cook healthy foods, there are three times as many who cook with cream and butter. Maybe this is where our big problem (pun intended) with obesity stems from. When we can start thinking more about food as sustainment and not as a hobby or entertainment, we will go a long way towards eliminating obesity in this country and all the health problems associated with it.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Make Cookies, Not War...

Okay, so as I mentioned, we took the kids to the zoo yesterday. When we sat down for lunch, someone I was with mentioned that she had seen an extremely obese woman during our visit to the petting zoo, who wore a t-shirt that read "Make Cookies, Not War". She then went on to ask "why on earth" anyone that large would want to draw attention to herself with a t-shirt that basically mocked her size. I thought about that for a few seconds and offered this..."maybe she wears it to show people that she can laugh at herself. She probably uses it as a diversion and as a way of denying how she really feels about herself, which I'm sure is very negaitve". She does this by saying to everyone 'yes, I am big...but pay no attention...I have a great sense of humor'. S shrugged, "yeah, maybe".

I thought more about miss T later that evening and I couldn't help but think about all the times that I too, had made jokes about my cellulite or pointed out my bat wing arms to friends with a snicker. And in looking back, I'm sure I did it to show them that these imperfections had not escaped my attention...I was fully aware of them. Furthermore, I think I intended to convey that not only was I comfortable with my jingling arms, I had somehow made the decision to have them...or at least to not care enough to not have them. Why would I do that you ask? Because I felt really poorly about myself and I didn't want to believe that I didn't have any power over my weight/body, which is how I've felt, most of the time (I was in denial, just like miss T). Strange I know, but it seems like something such as one's diet should be easy for her to control. I guess I'm trying to say that the lack of self-control I've felt has sometimes been more embarrassing than the weight itself...and I'm sure miss T felt that way too, at times. She knew that people would perceive her large size as a lack of self-control...and her t-shirt was her way of letting people know that this was a conscious choice she had made, even if it was not. So although I find myself incredibly sad for miss T, because I know deep down she probably loathes herself...or at least her size, I am tempted to give her props...for poking fun at herself (at least on the surface), and for not just giving up and holing up in her family room and eating an entire bucket of fried chicken...especially on such a beautiful day.

Since I'm here writing, I may as well relay my (excellent) food choices today...a little bit of guilt sure goes a long way. I had a piece of toast (whole grain white again) for breakfast with a tsp. of peanut butter and a cup of coffee with fat-free vanilla coffee mate (another weakness for sure, and one I intend to address in the near future). For lunch I had a grilled chicken salad (from Sonic) with a minimal amount of their ranch dressing...which turned out not to be light despite the fact that it was listed on the menu as such. My sister had something infinitely better....I won't go into the greasy, cheesy details, and I remarked that I "hated her" as I munched on my iceberg lettuce. I skipped my favorite drink (next to D.C.), a diet cherry limeade, in favor of Perrier with lemon at home. I had no afternoon snack today (that salad actually filled me up...go figure) and had a chicken fajita for dinner with a small amount of light sour cream. I really, really wanted a D.C. during dinner but somehow resisted even though one of my family members asked why I didn't "just have one?" The reason is easy. If I have ONE, I will have another one tomorrow and one the next day and so on and so forth. All in all ~ a terrific day of healthy eating for me. I do have one small confession though...something that just slipped my mind. Luckily when my sister read my blog from this morning, she was kind enough to remind me about the spoonful of fried ice cream I ate the other night while we were out for Mexican. Sisters are so helpful like that. Thanks sis!

Headed the right direction...albeit slowly

This past week has been filled with highs and lows. I have been both proud and ashamed of myself. I have however, managed to stay inspired this week most of the time (despite my non-perfect dieting) thanks to my outside support system. I can't believe how many notes I've gotten from people. I've gotten emails, FB notes and comments from people I talk to all the time as well as from people I haven't heard from in years. Most of these notes offered encouragement, many people relayed their own weight-loss/gain stories and many of them said I had inspired them, which in turn, inspired me. Funny how that works. It's comforting to know that while weight-loss is such a personal thing (for most people anyway), so many of us have the same stories and share the same struggles.

I finally weighed myself this morning on my new scale and the (not-so) magic number was 171. If I'm going by my original weigh-in (on what may or may not have been a "broken" scale...I think it's pretty close either way)...I have lost 3 lbs. this week. I am trying to take that in stride. I worked hard most days last week however I did have some slip-ups as well. I don't have a personal chef and I don't have eight hours a day to spend with a personal trainer (e.g. Janet Jackson, who dropped 60 lbs. in 4 months!). I do, however, plan to start working out in the next couple of weeks. Besides, everyone knows you're only supposed to lose 1.5-2 lbs. per week when you lose it the "healthy" way. Another thing that has been working against me this week is the fact that I've had family in town which has meant more extravagant-than-usual meals and more meals out.

I should be writing down everything I eat and I did really well with this during the week but have been distracted these past few days while hanging out with the family. I'll give a brief synopsis here of my diet these past few days though - Thursday night we ate at mom and dad's again. I had a small hamburger (no bun), 3 or 4 tomato slices and about 5 potato chips with dip (I won't even try to justify this). On Friday we took the kids to the zoo. I had a pear and a tangerine for breakfast that day and a turkey sandwich on whole wheat for lunch (this was a proud moment - there is pizza and other unhealthy fare there everywhere you turn). That night we went out for Mexican food. I did have about 12-15 chips with salsa and I ordered the chicken fajitas. I ate most of the meat and veggies without tortillas (I had 1 and a half with about a tsp. of sour cream) and water. I did skip the margarita I REALLY wanted and I was also able to say no to all the menu items dripping in cheese (enchiladas are one of my favorite foods so this was no small feat). Saturday I had a piece of toast (whole grain white - not great...but it's all I had) with a tsp. of peanut butter and a tangerine for breakfast. Yesterday for lunch I had a turkey sandwich on whole wheat with a light layer of mayo on one slice of the bread (note: I would normally slather both pieces - love the stuff). I did break down and have a Bud Light in a moment of weakness during a heated game of Mexican Train in the afternoon. It was hot, we were by the pool, you do the math. For a snack yesterday I had a about a cup of Kettle Corn (which reminds me, I had another handful at the zoo where we bought it...), a piece of cheese and a banana. I also had a glass of Perrier with lemon. Last night was my "worst" meal this week and I'm still feeling ultra-guilty about it today (I'm going to use this guilt to my advantage though and really buckle down this week). I had a small slice of beef tenderloin, a salad with a small amount (1 TBSP) of Russian dressing (it had less calories and sugar than my other choice - regular Ranch) but here's the kicker...I had two helpings of my mom's mushroom casserole. Think mushrooms, cheese and A LOT of butter. What can I say? I had really good intentions to skip this side (the salad was actually my idea when my mom was asking what we should have with the tenderloin) but in the end, I was so hungry, I gave in. True to form, I rationalized that our company would soon be gone and I wouldn't be faced with this many temptations once they left, so I could enjoy this now. Very badly done.

I would like to point out that I have not had ONE diet coke in over a week and the only thing I've had to drink is water, club soda and coffee (well, and that one beer I mentioned previously). This is a really big thing for me - and it's also the thing I'm most proud of this week.

I do have a story from the zoo to share (about an obese woman and her t-shirt) but don't have the time right this second to write about it. And besides, I'm still processing my feelings about it. I just wanted to get something up here so that all of you following could stop wondering how much weight I've lost and when my next post would finally come. I'll try to post again tonight or first thing tomorrow.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

It's just a gut feeling...

Day 6 of my diet and still plugging along. Tuesday I ate a banana for breakfast with my cup of coffee (will never give THAT up), a pear for a morning snack and veggies with 2 TBSP. Light Hidden Valley Ranch for lunch. That night I was pretty hungry, as you can imagine, and had a cup of whole wheat macaroni for dinner with half a cup of spaghetti sauce (from the jar) and a pinch (or 3) of parmesan. Went to bed satisfied and let's face it, it's nice not to be awoken in the night by stomach grumblings.

Yesterday I had a hard-boiled egg, a handful of blueberries and a small turkey sausage patty for breakfast (thanks to another dieting co-worker who's much more organized than I am). Oh, and coffee of course. For lunch I ate a small whole wheat pita with some lean turkey and a slice of melted swiss cheese plus a small bowl of veggies (peppers and cherry tomatoes again - that's kind of my thing).

Now up until this point I haven't really gone into detail about what I'm cutting out. I have cut out all processed foods (with the exception of that spaghetti sauce on Tuesday night), all sugars that aren't natural and booze. Some of you are saying to yourselves "booze...really"? Well...yes. For the the time being at least, I plan on cutting it out. It's not all that difficult for me. I'm not a big drinker unless it's social and even then, I can usually take it or leave it. Don't get me wrong, there are exceptions to this rule (e.g. last December when I drank a vodka drink every night for a month). What has been the most difficult thing to cut out (right after chocolate, that is) is diet Coke. I miss the fizz...I miss the beautiful shiny can, I miss the caffeine (at least the daily headaches have finally stopped). So yesterday I was having serious d.c. withdrawls. Light bulb! I suddenly remembered one of my friends who used to drink club soda with a twist at her desk (she sat right next to me). At this point, even that sounded good to me...at least I'd get my fizz fix! So I went and got a huge fountain club soda from the cafe downstairs and put a lemon slice in it and after drinking about half, my carbonation craving was sated. I threw the rest in the trash. Now if that had been d.c., I would've drank the entire thing, thirsty or not, because it's laced with aspertame and boy is that good stuff!

Yesterday afternoon I had a pear and a piece of string cheese for a snack. I still have family in town and went to my mom and dad's for dinner again last night. My mom had made a homemade (pre-bought crust) pizza that was piled high with like 4 different types of meat. For the side, she made an awesome salad with feta and all the good fixings. I wasn't all that hungry at dinner (go figure) but took a piece of pizza and a big helping of salad. Well...bigger than I would've normally taken. I felt guilty right away taking the slice of pizza but I rationalized (yet again) that I had barely ingested any calories during the day so why not? I ate the salad first. I ate a bite of pizza here and there and by the half way point, I was done. I was full and actually listened to my gut and stopped eating. It took a conscious effort to stop but I did (it also helped that the pizza wasn't fabulous...thanks mom!).

I'm reading this book right now called The Principal of the Path. It's about listening to your gut, not when it comes to food (although I think this may somehow apply) but when it comes to everyday decisions. What to eat or not eat is a decision we're faced with every day. And although it may not seem as important as other life-changing decisions, such as how much to spend on a house or whether or not you should buy that $400 purse, it's the same voice telling us not to do something (like eat that cupcake). Which brings me to my point. Stopping eating when I'm full has always been a huge challenge for me. My eyes are often bigger than my stomach so I tend to take/order large portions. Rather than stopping when I'm full, sometimes even when I'm stuffed, I usually finish what's on my plate...particularly if it's something really good. Now I know full well that I'll be miserable in an hour or two but I do it anyway, ignoring that inner voice. Why? I wish I knew. It's not like there's a shortage of food in this country (at least not for most people thankfully). It's not as if I don't know where my next meal's coming from. If I only ate half and got hungry again in an hour, I could just walk over to the fridge and get something else.

I promise I will talk about how much weight I've (hopefully) lost in the next post. My scale has been in storage since we put our house on the market last November but I finally bought a new one on my lunch break today. At this point I can't even be sure 174 lbs. was my starting weight as I was recently informed that my parents' scale (the one I did my initial weigh-in on) is "broken". God, if it's higher than that, I'm gonna have to make another batch of soup.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Sorry it has taken me a few days to get another post up. I have been busy sitting on the couch with a blank stare due to the lack energy I've had since beginning this diet. Ok, I'll be honest...I didn't have much energy beforehand.

I started the Sacred Heart diet on Saturday...which is basically fruit, vegetables and this disgusting soup that you make from chicken broth, veggies and a few potatoes. There really is no broth to speak of though...it's pretty gross. I only ate it three times and couldn't bring myself to do it again. Let me just stop right here and say that this is a cleanse diet and is only meant to be followed for 7 days. I know full well that this type of diet is not sustainable (even if you have some sick desire for it to be) therefore I only planned to do it for a week or two to jump start my weight loss. Now...back to the diet...you're supposed to get a baked potato - with BUTTER - for dinner that first night. Thank God. That's the only thing keeping me from eating an entire watermelon, which I would've paid for dearly later on (bananas are not allowed the first few days. Of course - the only fruit that can make you feel semi-full, if only for 20 minutes). I read the diet plan over quickly - mainly just to get a list for the grocery store. That first day I ate fruit and soup (that's all you get)...I had a pear, an apple, 3 tangerines and some of that soup. I was so looking forward to my baked potato all day! I was out that afternoon so I called home and had my husband put the potato in the oven so it would be ready for attack upon my arrival home. So I get home and quickly glance at the diet plan again (just to see if a piece of bread has somehow magically appeared beneath the baked potato) only to see that you don't get a potato until DAY 2! I was so starved, I ate the thing anyway...peels and all.

Sunday I had veggies - cut up peppers, cherry tomatoes and some more soup. I also had another (leftover) baked potato for lunch. Oh and a piece of pizza. I knew it was wrong but true to my past dieting indiscretions, I thought...how bad can one little piece of pizza be? It only has two slices of pepperoni for crying out loud. More on this later. Now, I know since I technically ate my potato on day 1 that I shouldn't have had another on day 2 but at this point I've already modified the diet slightly in my head (because that's what dieters do). Sunday night I had more veggies - more peppers and cherry tomatoes on a bed of spring mix and a chicken breast. Oh..and two or maybe four bites of my son's hamburger.

Monday I eat a banana, 3 tangerines and a pear in the morning. For lunch I have more cut up raw red, green and yellow peppers and cherry tomatoes with 3 TBSPs. of Light Hidden Valley Ranch to dip them in. I have an apple for a snack in the afternoon. Last night family was in town so we ate at my parents' house. I ate 5 pieces of asparagus, a pork chop and a small baked potato with a couple TBSPs of light sour cream (no butter). I did not eat the skins this time though as I was full.

Okay - this may not be all that interesting...hearing about what I've consumed the past three days but let me get to something that might be. Let me just say first that there aren't that many women at my office but all of the women there are perpetually on a diet of some sort. We talk about food often...about what we're eating or NOT eating, about how much we're exercising or NOT exercising, etc.

So yesterday morning a friend of mine at work comes up to my cube and is relaying a story about an acquaintance of hers (who she cannot stand) who claims to be dieting but cheats "all the time." I'm thinking right away....she doesn't sound like all THAT bad of a person...it's not a crime to cheat...is it? She says that she was at a mutual friend's child's birthday party at Chuck-E-Cheese last weekend and this "acquaintance" was there. My friend goes on to tell me that when she went to A's wedding several years ago, she was about a size 10-12. Now three kids and some odd years later, she's about a 16-18. Hey, it happens. She says that A claims to be on a diet but proceeds to eat an ENTIRE SLICE of pizza, which gets me thinking about the piece of pizza I cheated with last weekend. I feel the need to defend A. I say, "I don't see how eating one piece of pizza is that detrimental to a diet. Better to cheat with ONE piece of pizza now that to eat an entire pizza a month from now when you snap." My friend semi-agrees with a shrug but says that A then proceeded to wash down the pizza with a cupcake. Okay - I can't really think of a defense for this, at least at the time of our conversation I couldn't. Of course I confessed that I too had eaten a piece of pizza last weekend despite my own diet...and only one day in, I might add. I'm telling you - complete honesty is my goal here. *sigh* I guess this is where I confess to taking that tiny little bite of SUGAR FREE dark chocolate almond bark on Saturday afternoon. Don't worry - my head hangs low as I write this.

But I've had some time to think about it. And though I may not be able to defend poor A's decision to eat a cupcake on her diet (after all that's just pure sugar and empty calories...at least pizza has cheese...which is good for you, calcium and all), I can understand how she may have concluded that it was all right. See, when you're on a perpetual diet, you play mind games with yourself. You can argue (to yourself) that one cupcake is okay on a special occasion (e.g. a friend's child's party). You can justify eating this or that just once is perfectly fine. And it is, when you're not actively trying to lose weight. You're just sabotaging yourself when you reach for something like a cupcake. But you do it anyway...common sense be damned. This in itself is what makes dieting so difficult. It's not just the physical addiction to food, it's all the mental b.s. that goes with it. Until you fix your head, you won't be able to fix your body. Now if only there was a "For Dummies" book for THAT....