Where I’m at this week

So I confessed last week to struggling with this whole losing weight and getting my act together issue.  It hasn’t gotten any easier.  The reason that I started this blog in the first place was to have an online journal for myself.  A place where I could be honest and forthright in the struggle of turning my life around.  (Hey, maybe our political leaders should have a blog so they can be forthright and honest…p’shaw).  Being healthy after years of not being healthy doesn’t just happen with the flick of a switch.  It is a complete lifestyle overhaul, which is putting it lightly when you’re trading in potato chips for kale chips.  I have to now think out planning meals, have healthy snacks on hand when the hormones exercise their schizophrenic tendencies, constantly talk myself into (and out of, and into and out of, and into…) working out, arrange time to work out…it takes over your life.  But…so does being a food addict. 

Living in the U.S. means that we are surrounded by food.  We are taught that good times happen around food, the way to a man’s heart is food, hell, we even have TV channels devoted to food.  There is an entire economy built around food and us porking out on it.  Food is big business.  This was never more apparent than when companies in my town were slashing jobs, people were losing their homes by the boatload but by golly, every restaurant in town had a full parking lot at night.

I’ve made improvements since I started this blog.  I eat vegetable based meals (not every meal but more now than I was before).  I exercise…somewhat. 

I need a drill sergeant

My real problem is that I lack discipline.  And that I am my own worst enemy.  I can play head games with myself that would make a member of a terrorist cell go sane.  I don’t believe in the whole “I don’t have time” excuse and frankly, I do my best to avoid it and I try to avoid others that use it too.  I do have time.  I have time to write blog posts, check Facebook, watch TV, talk myself out of exercise, check Facebook again, shop…all activities that could and should be sacrificed in the name of getting my cheeks off the couch.  So why do I avoid discipline?   I truly have no idea. 

I had a great session with my nutritionist yesterday.  Kerry is becoming such an important mentor to me.  Yesterday, she presented me with an amazing journal.  It has a daily page for “Morning Intentions” , followed by a page for “Evening Reflections”. There are things listed such as massage, visualization exercises, meditation…I feel my inner hippie coming out in this journal (hold the doobies).  As soon as I got home, I went through this journal and usually when I think of my nutritional journey, I get all hunched up and stressed.  This journal took all of that away!  I really believe it is exactly what I need.  (I’d post a picture but I’m the world’s worst picture taker so I’ll direct any questions to my wonderful nutritionist Kerry at Meaningful Wellness.)

So – what does an overweight girl with no discipline and a knack for laziness do to get in shape?  I don’t like to run so dangling a donut in front of me while running won’t work.  But KISS will!  No this is not a salute to Gene Simmons and his horrible music (sorry KISS fans but they suck).  Keep It Simple Stupid – KISS.  

I  have my goals, short, sweet, simple goals. 

1.  Drink 12 ozs of water first thing in the morning (I thought I could absorb this while showering but that was shot down so I guess I’ll just drink the damn water)

2. Get at least 7 hours of sleep a night (I’ve had sleeping issues for years)

3. Drink plenty of water (my doctor says instead of trying to count ounces, just drink until your pee is clear because that’s the whole point of drinking water – flushing your body of toxins)

4. Exercise every single day (can be as little as 15 minutes, but must do something)

5. Pack my lunch 

6.  Cook majority of meals at home

Doesn’t seem like much but these six items are going to rock my world.  I have additional goals and I’m going to write them all up and hang them around the house to keep myself in line. 

Tell me my little blog minions…how do YOU maintain discipline and stay on track?

 

 

 

Denial ain’t just a river in Egypt

Time to dish out the honesty that my blog is becoming so well known for and stop denying the obvious.  I have fallen off the wagon.  I’ve lost my mojo.  I screwed the pooch.  I am struggling to get back into the swing of things.  I had a rough week at work a few weeks ago and have struggled to get back into the habit of exercise and eating right. 

I’d like to establish something.  I am a former smoker (courtesy of acupuncture).  This is the first time that I’ve ever had to lose weight without smoking.  But at 38 years old, I can’t corrupt my body like I used to.  Nothing would bring me more delight than to suckle on the end of a Salem light without any consequences.  Hand delivered by a unicorn surrounded by fairies – a testament to how realistic smoking without consequences is. 

My real problem is lack of energy and time management.  This is totally my fault.  It is also my personality.  I am my own worst enemy in this aspect.  So how do I overcome me?  Hypnotism!  Okay, maybe being hypnotized is a little extreme.  Besides, I’ve always been afraid of being hypnotized ever since I read about a lady that was hypnotized by a perv who taught her to take off her clothes every time a bell rang.  Wouldn’t that just be wonderful when I’m walking down the street and my phone rings?  Or my workout timer goes off?  “Ahhhh, that big girl is getting naked!  Again!”  My neighbors are total prudes.  I can’t take that chance.  Next.

I feel plenty motivated to lose weight.  I want all the good things that come with a smaller body:  cute clothes, non-jiggling buns (make that a non-jiggling anything), approaching a booth at a restaurant without wondering if me and my chest are going to fit into it, wondering how low my car sinks when I get into it, and not having to lie to people that I’m suffering an asthma attack when I hit the third floor on the steps at work (note:  I do not have asthma, I just lie about it so people feel sorry for me). 

I need to get in the zone.  Surround myself with nothing but good health and nutrition.  It’s the same as Jennifer Aniston surrounding herself with a team to keep her beautiful because that’s her livelihood.  So I’m going to need a stylist, chef, personal trainer, my own Botox injection team and a second job, and a third job.  Jennifer surrounds herself with a TEAM to make her stunning.  I need to surround myself with a TEAM to make me healthier.  So far I have a nutritionist, my friend Kim at work (in the dictionary under health nut, it says to see her), people who are following this blog, my doctors, and, most importantly, the hubs.  In fact, just by writing this post, I’m starting to feel in the zone already.  As soon as I’m done, I’m going to go grab some dumbells and pump some iron, all five pounds of it (suck it Rocky).  Because a little something is better than nothing. 

Maybe I can keep this newfound momentum going.  It’s like one of my favorite movies “What About Bob”…baby steps Bob…baby steps to the elevator, baby steps on the bus, baby steps to saying no to McDonald’s, baby steps to stopping at 10 potato chips…baby steps.  This blog is already serving its purpose, i.e. to keep me honest, to record all my ups and downs, to be honest about what a yo-yo dieter goes through and to be the kick in the ass that I desperately need to get back on track when I’ve hit the wall.

So about getting into the zone?  Any suggestions? 

 

Organized needs to be cute

I’m trying to develop structure in my life.  Last week, due to long working hours, I had a very unstructured week.  To be honest, I’ve been living an unstructured life for years and it’s helped me to achieve many goals – thighs that rub together and nearly passing out within the first mile of a 5K included.  I’m always looking out for new ways to be organized.  Being healthy also needs organization.  However, in order for organization to work for me, it needs to be cute.  You cannot throw an excel sheet at me and say “here’s your structure super chunk, have at it.”  It needs to be girlie.  Colorful.  Posh.  Over the top school spirit, head cheerleader cute.  The kind of cute that makes tomboys want to throat punch me cute. 

The following tends to happen to me every night:  I get home from work, we have no groceries to put together a decent meal, we sit and debate/discuss where to get dinner from, we pick up our takeout, eat and bam, it’s now bedtime.  See what happens here?  If I had planned my meals ahead OR had done my weekly dinner prep on Sundays like so many of you suggested on a previous post, the entire issue could have been diverted and I would have been able to accomplish much more.  Instead, I picked up dinner, ate, burped a little and then went to bed. 

I need to meal plan and organize my evenings.  But how do I do that if I don’t have the proper pastel colored tools of motivation?  Barbie, Skipper, Ken – I need your beached blonde 80s bods over here stat!  If I have something cute and enviable, I’ll not only do this, I’ll want to do this.   So I googled some templates and I found that there are some cute templates on Excel.  The Excel that I’ve had loaded on my computer for years.   Well ain’t that just a kick in the crotch.  I’m quickly running out of excuses to get my act together.  The templates that I found are bland, non exciting and desperately need to be color enhanced.  However, I am the Tim Gunn of designing a cute Excel sheet so I went to work and printed off daily schedules for my evenings and meal planners.  For those of you that have Excel, here are some instructions on how to create these in their original format because I respect accept that not everyone has the same desire to be all rainbow and unicorns like me (whatevs) so here you go. 

Open Excel -> click file, then new -> for the newer versions of Excel, a box will pop up for you to search templates (not sure about the older one because this is 2014 and I can’t remember what was being offered beyond 4 years ago) -> type in meal planner or daily planner or whatever is pressing on your dear little heart and prepare to be amazed.  In the future, I’ll post a link to what I’ve created…once I can link to Pay Pal and charge you for them…kidding kidding.  But for some reason, it won’t allow me to link to them right now.   

I used my printed day planner all day today and it came in handy for reminders – pick up my prescription that the pharmacy has called me about for 2 (maybe 4) days, mail my bills that have been in my purse for awhile (even the ones with cobwebs) and to make a blog entry about my glam-o-rama planners. 

What type of system do you use for meal planning and keeping yourself at task? 

Life is a balance beam and I’m no Mary Lou Retton

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I realize by using the name Mary Lou Retton, I’m dating myself but I just love her. 

This week has been a really hectic week.  Long hours at work, grabbing meals on the fly, and trying to keep up with everything outside of work have all added up to a week with no structure.  I tried very hard to keep my meals vegetable based so that I could have some comfort of knowing I wasn’t eating total junk.  (By the way, I have discovered the magic of a Greek salad.  I’ll definitely be posting a recipe for it!)  Unfortunately, exercise totally fell by the wayside this week and I can feel it. 

This week has made me realize that life is like a balance beam.  You have to take your time and stay focused.  Ever watch those Olympic gymnasts on the balance beam?  They are so engrossed in the task at hand.  They are careful, dutiful and determined.  Go too fast, and you’ve reached the end before you planned on it.  Lean one way too far and the balance is disrupted.  One…step…at…a…time.  Kind of like life.  Go full steam ahead into a new and intense workout – and you’re going to regret it 15 minutes later (which is frustrating in an hour long class).  Focus on just exercise and food, your housework goes to hell.  Focus on the housework and everything but housework goes to hell.  So right now, I’m trying to figure out that balance.  And – I’ve come to the conclusion – there’s no such thing! 

These lifestyle changes that I’m trying to make encompass everything.  I remember reading an article about actress Ali Larter and she said “I never miss a workout.  Ever.”  Easy for a movie star to say when she has a maid, cook, personal assistant.  But Ali works, she travels, she does interviews, premieres.  She just has focused on her priorities.  And that’s what I need to work on.  My NEW priority is living life past the age of 40.  To do that, I need to move and eat right. 

Let’s get something straight here.  I am not now or have ever been someone who focuses on housework.  I hate housework.  I would rather hot tar a roof than do dishes.  If you’re going to visit me, you better give me fair notice or you are going to walk into a disaster of a home.  Dust, dog hair and dirty dishes.  Suck it up or call first.  I manage to keep clean bathrooms, clean laundry and a keep decent kitchen just to keep us from getting a plague of some sort but that’s about it.  And how does that happen when I hate housework?  I make it a priority. 

For exercise and homemade meals to happen, it takes time.  So things have to be planned and structured.  I do not like either of those things.  The hubs and I do not have children so we pretty much wing it just about everyday.  After years of winging it, now we have to buckle down and guess what.  It sucks.  Just kidding.  I know the end result will be amazing and worth it.  It’s just getting from point A to point B. 

I really need to stay focused on my priorities.  I’m on the balance beam, centered and focused on good nutrition and activity.   On the left is laundry, vacuuming, and dusting, all of which are getting neglected.  On the right, chocolate and Cheetos .  At the end of the beam is a nice, long, healthy life, because right now, that’s my prize, my gold medal.  Guess which way is going to get me there? 

What’s your secret to maintaining a balance between maintaining a healthy lifestyle and everything else?  Would love to hear your secret, tips and cheat codes!   

The week that I woke up

This past week has been incredible.  Let me rephrase that.  This past week, I have been incredible.  I have exercised.  I have had extra calories leftover at the end of the day.  In short, I’m kicking ass.

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I attribute this awakening to my nutritionist Kerry.  She gave me two simple words this session to practice.  No excuses.  Now, let’s understand how huge this is:  I am a born again procrastinator.  I take procrastination to an art form.  Diet?  I’ll start Monday (first uttered in 2002, then started in 2014).  Dishes?  Let’s just buy paper plates until the Board of Health knocks on the door.  Once, I accidentally peed my pants as a child because I didn’t want to stop shopping to use the restroom…ok, I was 14, moving on. 

For the past decade, I’ve been living life like a snooze bar.  Exercise?  Weight loss?  Housework?  Vacation?  Snoooooooze!  After I left my session with Kerry, I went home and exercised.  The next day, I wouldn’t allow myself to utter a single excuse or put anything off.  Then later in the day, feeling rather saucy, I said to the hubs “I need to exercise, let’s walk for an hour.”  He gave me his famous eyeroll with this “oh great, here she goes again” look.  So we walked.  And walked.  And then I whined.  And whined.  And whined.  “Are we home yet?  Whose stupid idea was this?  Hey a shortcut!  I’m not going to make it.  I think I have diaper rash.”  The hubs wouldn’t let me quit, he kept taunting me, even walking backwards to give me a chance to catch up, which I could not do.  BUT…an hour and six minutes later, we were home.  I had made my goal and walked 4 miles in the process.  This is huge.  Two months ago, I was stopping after five minutes because my back was killing me.  The next day, I wasn’t going to have time to exercise after work, so I worked out on lunch.  Say what?  You heard me!  I jumped on my exercise bike and worked that bad boy.  Then I hauled my tired muscles and slight case of body odor back to work and bragged to anyone who would listen.  Most could have cared less so I made sure to whiff my armpits at them any time I could.  Hey, get on board or smell my b.o.! 

I’ve also been taking the time to faithfully log all my consumed foods into my Fitbit app.  I have been totally slacking on this and now I’m being completely honest because how is the app to know if I ate a King Size Snickers bar and didn’t log it?  So no more Bill Clinton-ing the Fitbit, I’m being honest.  (Side note: I am totally anti-calorie counting and have always refused to do it but my way is obviously not working, thus…I’m counting calories, actually the Fitbit is counting calories, I’m just punching food into my phone.)  It’s crazy how fast calories stack up.  Who decided it was legal for steak to have less calories than ice cream?  Ugh. 

Saturday night, I attended a wedding reception.  Congrats to my friend Sara, my skinny friend Sara, my skinny friend Sara that had mountains of candy and cake at her reception.  I had carefully planned my menu for the day around the nacho bar that I planned to indulge in at the reception.  It was tough keeping myself occupied all day so that I wouldn’t pork out on whatever I could get my hands on but I made sure to keep myself busy and to stay out of the kitchen.  Actually, the kitchen is a disaster right now because we’ve been cooking on the grill all week while doing landscaping so I’ve barely been in the house to clean, so if I had gone to the kitchen for food, I would have been faced with the fact that the kitchen needs cleaned and who needs that kind of pressure when there is a nacho bar waiting for them in a few hours?!?  And let me tell you, I ate those nachos and all the over processed nacho cheese I could handle and did not go over my calorie count for the day.  It was so good.  Honestly, I think I moaned a little.  I’m also spending today, drinking as much water as I can to wash the sodium out of my body but it was a freaking nacho bar! 

To sum up the past week – I have a new found discipline that I have not possessed in a long time.  I’m drinking water, exercising on lunch (wtf?) and limiting my calorie intake.  I didn’t think any of this was possible for me!  I have wanted this discipline, I’ve been searching for it and now I have it.  Hanging onto it will be a whole new battle.  I can win the battle, it may take a couple of nacho bar rewards, but I’m in the zone.  Get on board or smell my b.o.!