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.