Sunday, September 23, 2007

3 Lives Down, 6 To Go

Once again, I haven't written in awhile. And once again, there are a million different not-so-fun reasons why. As the title suggests, our fat cat Fergie gave us QUITE a scare earlier this month. She suddenly stopped eating, drinking, moving, responding, etc., and according to the vets, the situation looked pretty bad. Long story short, she's a lucky kitty, and an expensive one now, too. Turns out the "mass" they found in her belly was probably pancreatitis (swollen/inflamed pancreas) and NOT a tumor. Wish we could've known that BEFORE the ultrasound was done that cost about as much as our car payment! But at least it provided some peace of mind that whatever she had was completely gone, and that it wasn't cancer. So I think this little episode has cost her at least one of her nine lives. Combined with the fact that Fergie's former owner lost/abandoned her after getting her declawed (thus poor Fergie was wandering around outside completely defenseless and without the means to catch food to eat, who knows what could've happened to her - BAD CAT OWNER!!), and we then rescued her from a shelter that would've put her to sleep if no one adopted her, I figure she's used up at least three of those nine lives already! This picture was taken while she was almost fully recovered. I was packing to leave for a few days, and apparently she wanted to go with. Always demanding attention!!

Speaking of fat cats in suitcases, I went home to Illinois to visit family and to go to my best friend's baby shower. I had been SO STRESSED because of my fur-child being so sick, and because this new-teacher business is just sucking the life right out of me, I'm just so tired from trying to figure it all out. So I was worried about leaving it all for four days and being able to keep up. Turns out the trip couldn't have been more perfect, I got to see everyone I had planned on seeing and more, and all my flights were turbulence-free. No panic attacks mid-air this time!

Also going on this month after I got back from my trip was my first formal observation by my principal. I was a nervous wreck, but turns out it went perfectly, in my opinion. Really couldn't have been much better. The kids were perfect angels, the lesson I had chosen flowed smoothly, and the whole situation felt so relaxed. Afterwards, it felt like a HUGE crushing weight had been lifted off my chest. Progress reports were also due last week, so there were a couple nights where I had only gotten a couple hours of sleep, since I had to stay up late figuring all that out. Who knew my high school teachers when through all this crap?! And made it all look so easy!!

With all this juggling going on, I had to stop taking Alli. The "treatment effects" were simply too unpredictable and inconvenient for the kind of week I've had. Every morning at school, my planning period was spent near a bathroom, instead of actually planning or getting paperwork done. And with all that traveling, I just didn't want to be driving in the middle of nowhere in the rental car and suddenly be racing to the nearest exit for a bathroom. Just not worth it. But now that all that stuff is behind me, I started taking it again this weekend. I think it works best for me to only take on weekends, and then sparingly during the week. And I've still done quite well, considering that I had stopped taken it, was traveling, and didn't exercise at all. Honestly, I've just reached a whole new level of stress where I don't even feel like eating lately. Wow, never thought I'd say that, since my natural response to stress is to eat everything in sight.

And now for the progress report:

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Going Low-Fat With Alli? Say It Ain't So, Mrs. B!

Well, I finally gave in. But it's not what you think, let me explain. After reading and hearing about it for weeks, I finally went out and splurged a significant part of my new bigger and better teacher's paycheck on this new all-the-rage product. Alli touts itself as an FDA approved non-prescription weight loss aid, which helps you lose 50% more weight than dieting alone, somehow blocking about 25% of all the fat you eat. Warning: when the label says that it's to be used in conjunction with a low-fat diet, it means exactly that. This pill has some SERIOUS side effects (or, "treatment effects", as the program calls it) if you eat too much fat during a meal. It recommends keeping it under 15-19 grams of fat per meal, but I swear, I've been keeping it lower than that, and I've had some close calls trying to make it to the nearest bathroom.

All considered, this product has been worth it for me. I wanted something to help give my weight loss efforts a quick jump start, 'cause I've been really waffling with trying to get back on track. I've lost about 11 pounds since I started on August 16th, but who knows how much of that weight loss is attributable to Alli. I mean, I have been eating low-carb AND low-fat, which means that I've been eating loads of fresh veggies and more fresh fruits. I've also been focusing more on leaner meats and cheeses, which is new for me since I'm so used to doing low-carb and going hog-wild with all the bacon and eggs I can handle. By taking the pill with some of my meals, it really becomes a mental thing for me. Even though some low-carb proponents say to pile on all the butter I want, well, ..... why? Certain types of fats may be good for me, but do I really need to eat them in excess just because I'm eating low-carb? The pill really forces me to pay attention to unnecessary fat in my diet. And combined with low-carb, I'm reaping the benefits of teaching myself to eat MUCH more fresh produce and lean meats.

Anyway, I guess my point is that I'm not sure how much of my weight loss is the actually from the pill, rather than the lifestyle changes I've been making. I've also started training for that half-marathon next month, so who knows. The combined effect is that I'm losing weight, my clothes are fitting again, I'm happy, and that's all that matters. And I'm not giving up on low-carb. I'll ALWAYS be a low-carber. But I've realized that I also need to pay a little more attention to my fat and calorie intake, too, and Alli is forcing me to do just that.

Whiplash tangent - how great is it that it's finally football season again?! It's kinda like comfort food for me, but without the calories. There's nothing more relaxing that getting home from church on a Sunday morning, faced with the prospect of lazy day on the couch with a whole lineup of good football games on TV. And if I fall asleep to the sound of foul calls and yardage stats at some point, so be it. Music to my ears.

And now for the damage (although it's good news this week!):

Friday, August 24, 2007

I Can't Believe I'm Doing This!

Yeah, I may be nuttier than squirrel poo (I've been dying to work in that line from the last Harry Potter book), but I've signed up to run a half-marathon in February '08. Don't let the logo picture fool you - there's a half-marathon that runs concurrently with the marathon. My exercise and weight loss efforts have really been paying off, and I'm just feeling inspired to really challenge myself. I know I won't be able to jog the entire 13.1 miles, but I can jog at least a 5K, so I'll work on building that mileage up even more and just powerwalk the rest. It's for a cause I'm really passionate about, too, and the timing is perfect, training-wise (it's a little under 6 months away, so I should be good and ready).

So I've started focusing my exercise routines on jogging again. And I've even told a few of my students and colleagues that I'm doing this, which helps to ramp up my commitment level, 'cause I don't want to go back on my word! But unfortunately, I haven't been able to continue my training this week - who knew teaching took such a toll on one's feet!!! My dogs hurt SO BAD!!! I've got blisters and everything from standing all day, so there went my step class. And forget jogging this week! My tootsies need some serious rest and recovery.....

And now for the latest and greatest:

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Tag, You're It!

So, Jimmy Moore of the "Livin' La Vida Low-Carb" blog went and "blog-tagged" me. Normally, I'd rank this up there with annoying chain letters and phone calls with automated messages.... BUT it IS Jimmy, and I love his blogs, so I consider it an honor - hehe. Besides, I haven't blogged in a long while, so it's the perfect kick in the pants for me to update it - thanks, Jimmy!

So.... I have to come up with 8 interesting things about myself? Yeesh, I'm feeling pretty dull lately, but here goes:

1. I'm starting a new career!! This coming Monday will be my first day as a teacher. I'm so excited!!! And this also explains why I've been feeling so dull as of late - so much work to do!!

2. I am a football FREAK. I LIVE for football season. Don't even try to pry me off the couch and away from the TV on Sundays and Monday nights. My team? DA BEARS!!!

3. I am incredibly opinionated when it comes to the names parents give their children. And I feel I've earned that right because I myself am the victim of having been given an unusual first name. And let me tell you - I'M the one who has to live with it, and I'M the one who has to put up with the constant misspronunciations and spellings. And you know who DOESN'T have to deal with it?? The parents who named me!!! (I still love 'em, though. Sigh.) To all the parents out there - YOU ARE NOT THE ONE WHO HAS TO LIVE WITH YOUR CHILD'S NAME!!! My biggest naming pet peeve??? When parents give their child a common name, but spell it "differently" (I call it just spelling it just plain "wrong") because they want their child to be unique. Parents, all that does is sentence your child to a life other people assuming (as they very well should be able to) that Jennifer spells her name just like that, and NOT as "Genypher" or something equally dumb. If you wanted a unique name, then make up an original name! Don't mess around with the common ones!!! Your poor child spends probably a good 5 years of their life correcting people. GRRRRR!!! Okay, I feel better now :) Whew!

4. I am also a HUGE tennis fan. No, I don't have a clue how to play, but someday I'd love to take lessons. My favorite surface is the clay court, and so I love watching the French Open. I was also fortunate enough to intern in London for 3 months a few summers ago, and so of COURSE I made sure to visit the hallowed grounds of Wimbledon - truly the church of the tennis!

5. I love extra-dark chocolate. And wine. 'Nuff said.

6. I have to sleep with the ceiling fan on, which is right above our bed. I have to be able to feel the air circulating, and I love the fact that the fan's constant hum blocks out random noise from bumps in the night.

7. I swore up and down in high school after a band trip to Walt Disney World (yeah, I was a band geek) that I NEVER needed to go back to Florida for ANY reason - TOO HOT!!! And now look at me. God really does have a sense of humor. My husband unfortunately is stationed here, and well...... the things we do for love.

8. I'm not a picky eater AT ALL (probably contributes to my love of food and thus my weight problem). I only say no to olives and pickles. Or anything pickled, really. EW!! And yet my favorite salad dressing is oil and vinegar..... go figure.

As for my 8 unsuspecting tag-victims, we'll give these a try:

1. Big Daddy D

2. Sherrie from Pinch Of ...

3. PJ's The Divine Lowcarb!

4. The Sugar Plump Fairy

5. Stumbling to Bethlehem

6. Mr. and Mrs. Fat

7. Calianna

8. The Steaks Are High

And now for the damage as of late (although I'm down from having topped out recently at 208!):

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Hanging In There..... Barely

I wish I could figure out what's wrong with me. Everytime I get into a stressful situation, all my healthy habits get chucked out the window, even though I know that keeping my weight down would help me weather life's storms so much better. And yet I'm at the drive-thru as soon as I leave work, or heading straight for the grocery store to stock up on junk food to stuff my face with all night. It makes absolutely NO SENSE. So now I've ballooned back up to almost 200 lbs. Definitely far from my highest weight ever, but still..... I was SO CLOSE to my goal weight earlier this year. I'm the classic example of self-sabatoging behavior.

What's been stressing me out? I'm switching careers, and I'm scared to death. I'm really excited, but I oscillate minute-by-minute between feeling scared and excited, so I'm constantly on-edge this month. I'm going to be teaching high school this fall, and I've never taught a single thing in my life. That also means that I had to give notice this month at my current job, something I've never had to do before, and that was stressful as well. It's really awkward going into work right now, knowing that I'll be leaving in a few days, and knowing that some of my coworkers will miss me (and I'm going to miss them so much, too), while others are upset that I'm leaving them at a really busy time for the business. I've also been stressing about getting older, I'm starting to find the gray hairs, everyone around me is having kids, and I don't have any yet, etc., etc. AND with all that going on inside my head, my husband has been gone the entire month of July with the ship. So no help or support whatsoever, other than a rare email every now and then.

So yesterday I finally put a stop to the madness. My back has been hurting a LOT for a few weeks now with the strain of weight-gain, as well as stiffness from not having working out for almost a month. I've also been withdrawing more and more from going out in public (unless I have to for work), simply because I'm so self-conscious about being heavier, and of course none of my clothes fit right now. In fact, when I told a couple of coworkers earlier this month that I had some news, one of them asked if I was pregnant before I could tell them that my news was that I would be leaving the company! I was MORTIFIED at how obvious my sudden weight gain had been. I'd say I'm just taking it one day at a time, but it's more like one minute at a time. Even as I write, I'm feeling dizzy from sugar and fast-food withdrawal. I just got back from the grocery store and stocked up on fresh produce and other low-carb staples, hoping that it would help motivate me. I'm hoping to make it to the gym today, but I figured I'd wait until tonight because it's near-empty on Saturday nights. I'm just so embarassed about being heavier again, and the last thing I want to do is go huff-and-puff on a treadmill in front of beach bodies. My goal right now is just to make it through the rest of the day.

For now I'm hanging in there, just like that cute little squirrel in the pic. We inherited hanging plants from some friends that just moved away last month (more stress!!), and now our balcony is a forest/circus with all the wildlife that the plants and new birdfeeders are attracting. Safe to say my cat is VERY happy with all the new entertainment outside.

And now for the damage:

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Back In The Saddle Again

And the lifelong battle continues. It's so frustrating to be sooooo close to my ultimate goal weight, only to sabotage myself and balloon back up to near-obesity. But I'm staying positive. It's still very much possible to do it this year. I can lose these last 30 pounds by Christmas, if can I just stop screwing around. I haven't been full-out binging, just making poor choices and not exercising as much as I should. And when I do get to the gym, I'm not really pushing myself to try to improve. Basically, I've just been complacent, not really gaining much, but not losing, either. I'm just in limbo.

The good news is that even though I gained some weight back (about 15 lbs), it's not as much as the last time this happened, or the time before that..... or the time before that. I jumped back up to only 184 this time (just under my obesity-level). Last time it was 208 before I turned it around. So again, I'm just trying to stay positive: I caught myself before I even crossed into official obesity-land, and I've only got a little more than 30 pounds to reach goal. And overall, I've still lost almost 75 lbs from my highest weight. Not too shabby!

So to kick-start my comeback, I'm going to be signing up for my area's 4th of July 5K. I'd like to do a personal best, but I'm not sure if I can get in good enough shape by then. Either way, it's something to work toward.

About this picture, my husband and I just got back from a trip to Savannah, Georgia. The ONLY reason we came back was because we can't exactly afford a 5-10 million dollar home in the historic district, like the one in the background. By the way, that's the Mercer Williams House, made famous by the book and movie "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil". Savannah was one of the most romantic places I've ever been, and I'm so fortunate to be able to cross it off my life's to-do list.

And now for the latest progress update:

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

30-In-30 Challenge: Weeks 17-18, 169.4 lbs & A New Personal 5K Record

Finally, a really outstanding week (in terms of health, anyway), and I really needed it. Everything else in my life seems sooooo unstable right now with my husband's whiplash-like Navy "schedule", my own high-pressure job, and now my family back up north seems to have disowned me for the time being over something really ridiculous. I mean, the situation is one step above Jerry Springer-worthy, and yet I'm the one on the outs because I decided to interject some rationalism. It's times like these I'm grateful for being hundreds of miles away. Okay, bad tangent, but that's why it's nice to have my health-related goals to focus on while it seems like everything else is going down the drain. My husband and I signed up for a 5K on Saturday, and we both did great. I actually had a personal best of ~35:20min, finally breaking a previous time of 36min. That's my husband pacing right in front of me. I was able to keep up with him for at least a mile before I lost him going up a bridge. It was by far the longest I'd ever been able to keep up with him before pooping out, or before he started walking beside me while I shuffled. Quite the accomplishment, considering he's in MUCH better shape, having to run all the time for physical fitness tests at work.

The other great thing - I finally got my act together after a couple of weeks of on-and-off binging. I've been going to the gym regularly again, and I've been stricter with watching what I eat. The reward is FINALLY breaking the 170 mark. I'm pretty sure this is the lowest I've weighed since grade school! Another nice thing about getting back on track: fitting into an adorable pair of size 12 white pinstripe dress-pants that my husband affectionately called "do-me pants" - hehe.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

30-In-30 Challenge: Weeks 15-16, 171.6 lbs & My NON-Fat Tuesday Celebration

In keeping with our new tradition of not indulging on holidays that embrace and celebrate gluttony (think Thanksgiving), I decided to run on Fat Tuesday and fore go my church's pancake dinner. It was only two miles, but I did it without stopping to walk, even though I had side stitches for most of the run. And I finished around 23:40, well under my low-expectation goal of 25 minutes. Whoo-hoo!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

30-In-30 Challenge: Week 14, 171 lbs

So I just realized that I'm not even halfway done with this 30-week challenge to lose 30 lbs, and I've already lost 37 lbs! I had another good week, lost another 1.6lbs. God bless digital scales - it shows progress, no matter how small. The other exciting thing that happened this week - My size 14 dress pants are embarrassingly baggy, so I've started buying size 12 - whoo-hoo! I haven't worn a size 12 since grade school. No exaggeration!

The reason for the picture is that I have to give a plug to YOU: On A Diet, my new favorite book. Don't let the title fool you, it doesn't really push any revolutionary new faddish way of eating to lose weight (yes, it's got an eating plan, but it's mostly common-sense. naturally low-carb stuff I already do anyway, even though the authors take a few jabs at low-carb "diets" throughout the book). Instead, this book delves deeply the body's digestive system and how we process the foods we eat. It has LOTS of fun diagrams and pictures that dumb down all this scientific crap for me so that it's not boring at all. I've read it cover-to-cover now and I already feel like reading it all over again just 'cause there was SO much information, I couldn't possibly soak it all in. I HIGHLY recommend this book to ANYone who wants a better understanding of how every nutrient and bite of food affects their body, and anyone who's looking for a new kind of motivation in their weight-loss journey. And FYI, this book is by the same medical doctors who wrote "YOU: The Owner's Manual", and both books were featured on Oprah. AND, they're the same docs behind the website

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Inspirational Testimony?

I had yet another profound moment this past week on this long weight loss journey of mine. I was catching up with my mom over the phone Friday night (yeah, I have no life - sorry Mom - hehe), and keep in mind that I just flew home to visit her, my step-dad, and my brother a couple weeks ago. And I had lost at least 25 lbs since the last time they saw me. Anyway, last Friday night, my mom informed me that she had asked for prayer for me and my struggles with my weight in a prayer group at church last fall (back when I was still binging while my husband was away for months at a Naval school). They were told to get in small groups of three for prayer, so it happened that my parents were paired with a man who had been struggling with his faith. And they asked him to pray for me.

Fast forward to when I went home a couple weeks ago, and I went to church with my parents. I didn't know it at the time, but I was introduced to this man who had been praying for me. My mom later told him that I was the one they had requested prayer for and explained how I used to weigh over 255 lbs, to which he responded, "I was gonna say, I was starting to think you had a different definition of 'overweight'!". Point is, it was a revelation to me that someone was praying for me. I consider myself to be a rather spiritual person, and yet it had never occurred to me pray for help with my weight problems. I've NEVER prayed about it. And it didn't take me long to figure out why: the guilt. I've always felt like if I wanted it badly enough, I could lose the weight. I was a fat slob because of my own doing. So why pray about it if it was my fault to begin with? I should've known better. I see now that it's no coincidence that shortly after my mom asked for prayer that I somehow managed to get back on track. And now, hopefully this man who was struggling with his faith can see that God is really listening! The whole story just makes me feel like I have a higher purpose in this process. It feels like I'm letting more than just myself down if I get sidetracked now..... but it's an awesome feeling.

The other bit of news from my mom is the effect I had on my brother. I wrote about his own lifelong battle with his weight earlier, and how he had gained at least 50 lbs since the last time I had seen him 6 months ago, and how he appears to suffer from the same binge-eating tendencies that I do. Well, while at my parents' house, my brother hugged me and told me how great I looked, referring to my weight loss. It felt really good, and it was so unexpected, given our rather rocky relationship. And now, according to my mom, he appears to be trying to eat well and exercise again. Hallelujah! It feels so good knowing that I might have been the catalyst that got my brother to wake up and realize that he was headed down a dangerous path with his health. Thank you, Lord!!

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

30-In-30 Challenge: Week 13, 172.6 lbs

So I joined a gym last night. Lifestyle Family Fitness. My husband had been encouraging me to do it for a few weeks now, and so we finally went last night to sign me up. I've actually been a member of this particular gym before, but I had to let my membership go earlier this year because I was in between jobs, finances were tight, and I wasn't even using it (yup, I was sitting at home instead, having nightly binge-eating fests 'cause I was super-stressed from the money issues, and my husband was on deployment and therefore wasn't there to watch me self-medicate the stress and pain away with food). Anyway, I really do love this gym - it's brand-new with all new equipment, it's got TVs hooked up to all the cardio equipment, the staff lets me do my own thing, there's no waiting for machines, it's perfectly safe and well-lit (the main issue, since the only time I can workout is after dark), I know from experience that breaking my membership is absolutely hassle-free, and the best part - it's practically across the street! No excuses. So I worked out last night after signing up, AND I went again this morning before work. It felt so good to be back.

But back to last night's workout. I had an interesting bittersweet experience there, something that only truly formerly FAT people can relate to. And it's not the first time something like this has happened. First off, when you swipe your membership card to check in and enter the building, your picture on file appears on the clerk's computer screen. Well, when I checked in last night for the first time since dropping my membership earlier in the year, the clerk made a weird face, said there was some sort of mistake with my picture, but let me in anyway, saying she'd look into it and resolve it later. Well, on my way back out the door after my workout last night, the same clerk stopped me at the door and asked that next time I come, that I have someone take my picture again for their files. She said that the one they have for me looks nothing like me, and that she doesn't "want to see that person" anymore when she checks me in (she meant it as a compliment). Finally, the light bulb went off in my head, and I asked her to turn the computer screen to see what they had on file. I knew it was coming, and yet I was still shocked, 'cause it was even worse than I had thought. No wonder she had been so confused. There I was on her computer screen, a good 50 lbs heavier, with my hair back in a tight ponytail, and such poor picture quality that even I couldn't recognize my own fat face. The only way I could tell it was me was from the t-shirt I was wearing - a ratty old high school t-shirt. I literally looked like the Michelin Man in a turquoise 1995 perfect attendance shirt. I didn't know whether to be proud of my present self, or to feel sorry for my former self. I said as much, and she congratulated me how far I had come. Safe to say I couldn't wait to have that new picture taken this morning when I went back again!

Sorry for the topic-change whip-lash, but it's the Tuesday check-in for Jimmy Moore's 30-In-30 Challenge (2 lbs lost this week!), although I guess after reading about the changes to the Challenge, I think I'm going to be making my own changes to my participation in it. I've already met the challenge of losing 30 lbs in 30 weeks, so I think I'll simply continue on toward my ultimate goal weight of 150 (I'm so close), continuing to count the weeks since I've started (1 Nov 2006), and of course I'll keep checking in every Tuesday on Jimmy's Challenge blog for accountability.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

30-In-30 Challenge: Weeks 11-12, 174.6 lbs

Yes, I'm now WELL aware that I have the fattest, not-cutest-looking feet ever. I just never quite realized the extent of the non-cuteness until I attempted to take a picture of them. It explains why my mom has referred to them as Fred Flintstone feet all my life. Anyway. I have a new toy - a new scale by Weight Watchers. It pretty much does everything but talk to me , which it really SHOULD talk considering how much I paid for it. Oh well, that's what birthday money is for. And I figured I hadn't truly rewarded myself in awhile. It measures body fat, BMI, even my hydration level, and all sorts of other stats. And it remembers all this stuff for up to four people. Sad part? I've had it for about two weeks now, and I have yet to do anything but check my weight.

So I've had a busy couple of weeks. I flew back home to Chicagoland last weekend to visit parents and my brother and my adoreable little nephew. AND managed to eat well and lose weight. I couldn't really get any exercise in, and I haven't been up to working out since I got back, either. TOO TIRED, feeling like I'm still catching up from being gone for awhile. But it all turned out well, and everyone was amazed at how much I'd lost since the last time I'd been home. It was powerful motivation.

One of the hard things, though, was seeing my brother. He had clearly put on at least 50 lbs since I last saw him in August. I'm guessing he's easily over 300 lbs. His weight story is quite similar to mine, a lifetime of yo-yo-ing up and down. But it didn't hit me until last weekend that he may have the same binge-eating depression/coping issues that I do. How else does a person pack on that much weight in such a short time? It was really hard to see, almost like looking in the mirror at my former self. So jovial on the outside, but so filled with pain if anyone cared to look a little more closely. It's by far the heaviest he's ever been. And now that he's got a new kid, I gotta imagine that it'll be even harder now to lose the weight again.

One highlight, though, was a field trip to Black Earth, Wisconsin - home of the famous scandal-ridden shoe store The Shoe Box, and a great sports bar (under the same owners, who also own the Madison Mallards baseball team) called Rookies. The bar also has its own whiffle ball field, and in case you can't read the seventh rule, it reads: Close calls result in a Chug-off. And for all you southern snowbirds, the field was more suited to making snow angels than double-plays.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

30-In-30 Challenge: Week 10, 177.5lbs - GOOOAAL!!!

YES!!!! I DID IT!!! I feel so good, I could almost go out and pull a Chastain, but I still don't have the body for that, the hubby probably wouldn't approve, and well,'d just be weird without being in the middle of a soccer pitch having just scored a winning goal in front of thousands of cheering fans. But I feel almost as good as she did in that moment. Not only did I lose 30 lbs within the goal of 30 weeks - I lost it in TEN weeks. I don't think I've EVER lost weight that fast. I keep waiting for a month-long plateau to hit me, but it just never came. No complaints here, although I'm pretty sure I need to start eating a little more.
So now I'm less than 30 lbs away from my goal weight of 150. I'm well aware that these next 30 lbs are going to be a lot harder to lose, and so I know it'll take a lot longer than 10 weeks. But I've proven to myself now that it's very do-able by the end of 2007.
Because my ultimate goal weight seems so close, I've been thinking a lot about how to prevent my typical self-sabotage whenever I get to this stage. A lot of it has to do with my all-or-nothing attitude when it comes to eating right. I'm one of those people who has to eat perfectly, and once I get off track, it's nearly impossible to right myself before I've gained nearly every pound back. I use one single eating mishap to justify days, weeks, even months of binging. I mean, if I eat one cookie, I tell myself that I've blown my diet, so I might as well keep eating the whole package!! Then I'll go to the grocery store up the street and buy a whole bunch of junk food to scarf down for the rest of the night because, well, "I'll just get back on track tomorrow". But then the next morning comes, and I see that all the junk food from the previous night isn't gone yet. Well, I can't very well throw it away, that's wasteful! So I eat it, telling myself I'll just get back on track the next day. Then I go buy more junk food for the rest of the night, and the cycle just keeps repeating itself, day after week after month.
So after some thought, feedback from others, and a little online research, I'm thinking about joining Weight Watchers when I have about 10 lbs left to lose. So far it seems like their points plan is just what I need to combat this destructive inner dialogue. I need a different perspective on food. A new set of rules. Some view that says that it's perfectly okay to have the cake, so long as I make up for it in other ways, like cutting back earlier in the day/week. So that's what I've been kicking around in my head lately. That's a ways in the future, though. Right now I'm am perfectly content to enjoy the feeling of nearly 2 1/2 months of success.
Speaking of that, just because I met my goal already of 30 lbs, that doesn't mean I'm done with the 30-In-30 Challenge. I'm just going to set a new goal for it: I think another 10 lbs is more than reasonable in what's left of the Challenge time. I have 20 weeks left, so that's about a half a pound a week. Very reasonable.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

30-In-30 Challenge: Week 9, 180.5 lbs

I'm so glad 2006 is over. For many reasons, this had to be the worst year of my life. So many stresses, curveballs, and worries, and of course my weight reflected every up and down. But it's over and done with, and I have never been more optimistic about a new year. I'm so excited over some of our plans, I just know it's going to be a better year in terms of less stress and moving on.

I'm especially excited about the head start I have on getting my weight under control again. I had another big week on this 30-Lbs-In-30-Weeks Challenge, losing 3 lbs during the biggest stretch of food-fests in the year: Christmas, New Years Eve, and my birthday. I didn't feel (too) deprived, and any sacrifice is well-worth the feeling of knowing I don't need to spend the first few weeks of 2007 undoing damage from stuffing myself over the holidays.

And now, on with the obligatory New Year's Resolutions:

1. I must finally reach my goal weight of 150 lbs this year. I started with Atkins for the first time back on January 1st, 2003. I've come so close to reaching it a couple times now, but somehow I always manage to self-destruct and eat everything in sight until I put nearly every pound back on. Not this year. I'm about 30 lbs away now. I've lost almost 30 lbs in the last two months when I started this Challenge, so SURELY I can lose at least that much again in the next twelve months.

2. I need to drink less diet soda. Specifically Diet Mt. Dew. My husband and I drink it like water! I would say I down about 3 cans a day. While this is still LOADS better than drinking 5-6 cans of regular Coke a day like I used to, all those chemicals can't be that great for me. I'd like to shoot for no more than a can a day.

3. I need to be more diligent with daily devotions. As a Christian, it's simply non-negotiable, and I've let it slide to the back burner for far too long. I want to continue in my spiritual growth, and I'm growing stagnant by not prioritizing my life around it more.

4. I need to take better care of myself. My weight isn't the only thing I let go in 2006. But it stems from that. When you don't take care of yourself in one area, the other areas tend to follow suit. I haven't had a dental checkup in about a year now, and it's been at least a year and a half since my last eye checkup. I really need to get a complete physical, beyond the normal yearly thing, including a complete blood work-up to get my cholesterol, triglycerides, etc. checked. I just need to be more vigilant with my body in ALL areas, not just my weight.