Monday, August 31, 2009

Phase Three and the Missouri 60

It's been a rough few days for me. After the joyous two pound loss I recorded Saturday, I kind of fell off the wagon. I went to the movies Saturday evening and ate the giant tub of popcorn. I had ice cream Sunday. Today one of co-workers brought in donuts.

And I honestly don't know whether I took my vitamin yesterday or not. "But that's absurd!" I hear you saying. "Either you took it, or you didn't, and surely you know!" No, I really don't. It was a stressful day (you can read about why in my other blog, if you'd like) and I sat down to eat a bite of supper late. I remember getting my vitamin out of the bottle, but I'm really not sure what happened to it after that. I sometimes set my vitamin on the table while I eat, and at one point, I noticed it was gone, and I couldn't remember if I'd taken it or not. I think Daisy (who is perfect in every way and does not need to lose weight at all) might have taken it. Somebody in my house got 100% of the US RDA for 12 vitamins plus minerals. I'm just not sure whether it was me.

But I did actually walk all of the last four days. Which brings me to Phase Three of my super simple and easy to follow Baby Steps plan. After a couple weeks of the vitamin/water thing, then a couple weeks of adding one piece of fruit every day, I decided there was no way around it. To lose a significant amount of weight, one has to exercise.

Keeping with my theme of making tiny changes, I decided to set a goal of walking at least 20 minutes 5-6 days a week. Surely I can do that, right? It's only 20 minutes, and I didn't set any sort of intensity goal. Just get out and walk for 20 minutes most days. I figured, even 100 minutes of activity a week is better than no activity at all.

Well, the first couple days, I really did only do 20 minutes because I thought I was going to die of a heart attack because I wanted to start slowly. I've found though that once I'm out and about, I end up doing more like 30 or 40 minutes most of the time. It's beautiful weather here in Missouri, and I do like to walk. But I tell myself each time, I only have to do 20 minutes.

I've been doing this now for a couple weeks, and it truly is getting easier. I was going along at a pretty good clip this evening, and it felt good. Not at all heart attack inducing. I did only do 24 minutes though. But hey, at least I did that.

Anyhow, changing subjects...

Now that I'm participating in this weight loss blog, I've been looking up other weight loss blogs for inspiration, and one of my favorites has been Mary from A Merry Life. She recently posted the results of a challenge called "The Missouri 60." See, Missouri is known as the "Show Me State," so the idea is that you show your readers before photos, then stick to your program for 60 days, and post "after" pics. Because we actually live in Missouri, and being the crazy brave woman that I am, I'm going for it (even though the actual challenge Mary participated in has ended). Brace yourself.

That's me, in all my glory. Check back in with me on October 30 (Wait! No, I hope you check back in with me sooner than that!) and I'll show you what I look like then. Anybody else want to join me in this challenge?

Most awesome song I heard while working out today:
"Does Your Mother Know" by ABBA (I know, I really have no explanation for my musical tastes. ABBA is just fun.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Two Down!

I lost two as well!!! At least we are off to a good start. I did walk a few days this week and do a lot of outside work around the house, plus my son insisting I play baseball, kickball and football with him like 3 nights in a row helped quite a bit. I highly recommend a day at Powell Gardens for those visiting the KC area. We spent the day there yesterday walking around their new Harvest Garden area. I had a healthy home grown vegie lunch and lots of walking for exercise. I think I did pretty well with my goal to get back to being a vegetarian, at least 90% of the time. The only day I ate meat was at my sons "Back to School BBQ". The only food available was hot dogs, so there wasn't much of a choice. Last night I had a nice night out with my hubby, finally saw the new Harry Potter movie and a delicious dinner at our new favortie Indian restaurant. I felt full but I didn't stuff myself. I guess my new goal for the week is to stop eating when I feel full. I know that sounds crazy but I came from a home where you finished all the food on your plate. I need to learn to back away from the table when I feel full. Oh the best part of the weekend is... my husband is FINALLY working on our downstairs bathroom. He's been putting it in for over a year now. These days are few and far between. Keep your fingers crossed I have another two pounder week. I'm seeing my family next weekend who I see maybe once or twice a year and rarely invite me to family get togethers. Cheers!


I weighed yesterday, and I'd lost two pounds! I was hoping for maybe half a pound, but two whole pounds?! However, I'm a bit skeptical, because my shiny new fancy scale also said my body fat percentage went up. Which makes me think my two pounds lost was water weight.

Anyway, I'll take it. And I'll like it.

Most awesome song I heard while working out yesterday:
"Single Ladies" by Beyonce. And no, I didn't do the dance as I walked down the street, but I did have to do that little hand gesture at one point. I also have to clap at the appropriate spot in the Friends theme song. Always.

Friday, August 28, 2009

I Feel Thinner Already

I feel you guys watching over my shoulder. I wasn't going to work out at all today, but I plan to weigh myself first thing each Saturday morning (or maybe Sunday if I have to work Saturday) and post my results. I want tomorrow to be good, so I went for a walk today. (And then I ate fried potatoes.)

But, I'm jumping ahead of myself with that. Because I've only told you about phase one of my Baby Steps plan.

Okay, so I did the vitamin/glass of water thing for about two weeks before I decided to add something else. Each step of the way, I've been telling myself, it doesn't matter what I eat, what I drink, what I do, as long as I _______ today(so far, take a vitamin and drink a glass of water). It's a tiny goal, but I truly felt a little less like a gob of sludge for having done this small thing for two weeks without fail. And maybe I'm imagining it, but I think I physically felt better by about day two of that.

My next step was to eat a serving of fruit every day. I know I'm supposed to have something like three servings of fruit a day, plus five servings of vegetables or whatever. I'm also supposed to not eat salt, fat, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, blah blah blah. I'm not a saint people!

I tend to eat a lot of vegetables anyway, and I like fruit, but for some reason I don't eat it much. It seems like it goes bad before I eat it. And you can buy some pretty great frozen vegetables, but frozen fruit isn't so great in my opinion. And canned fruit? Forget it. Might as well eat pancake syrup. Seriously, are canned peaches and fresh peaches even from the same species of plant?! Because they're nothing alike.

Anyway, I've found myself eating fruit 5 to 6 days a week. The off days have been when I ran out of fruit and didn't have time to go to the store and buy more. (And that one day I took a lovely peach to work and took a big ol' bite of mushy mealy yuck and threw the rest in the trash.) Both Elizabeth's Gone and Regina suggested to me that maybe keeping some frozen or canned fruit around, just for the days I don't have fresh, might be a better solution than skipping it all together. So, this week I bought a bag of frozen strawberries to keep stashed for just such an occasion. And I figure 5-6 days eating fruit is better than 0, which is what I was doing before. Baby Steps!

Stay tuned tomorrow for the results of my weigh-in!

Most awesome song I heard while working out today:
"Isn't it Amazing" by Olivia Newton-John and Sun (whoever "Sun" is, I honestly have no clue, and never realized before that's the name of the person singing with her.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Dirty Truth

I have a quote on my vision board (I know, I'm not entirely sold on this whole Secret thing, but I do have a vision board) that says, "Vital change cannot be forced. It begins with embracing where you are right now." So, in an effort to embrace where I am, I'm gonna tell you the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.

I'm only five feet tall. Well, and a half an inch, which somehow I've acquired in the last year or two, which makes no sense whatsoever, but I'll take it. On my short little self, every pound really shows. I based my goal weight of 115 on the highest weight that is considered "normal" for my height and frame size (which is tiny--I have the smallest wrists you've ever seen on a grown woman). My current weight is 162.2. I went out and purchased a scale that measures to the tenth of a pound, because, as I stated before, the smallest victories will be celebrated here.

My new scale also measures body fat percentage. Mine is 41%. For those of you playing the home game, this puts me in the "obese" category. Could you just die?! I'm not even "overweight." Nope, we've gone clear off the deep end into "obese."

So, what am I doing about it?

I'm not following any specific diet plan. I decided several weeks ago that I had fallen so far off the health wagon that I needed a seriously teeny goal. Going to the gym for an hour a day ain't happening. Giving up chocolate ain't happening. I needed something I knew I could achieve so that I'd feel some miniscule measure of success. Something incredibly simple, yet something that would definitely improve my health.

What I decided to do was to start taking a multi-vitamin every day and drinking one glass of water a day. I know, I know, you're thinking, "Whoa girl! Let's not go crazy with making changes now!" Honestly, that's how far it had gone. I hadn't taken a vitamin in months. And many days went by where I didn't drink anything but coffee or diet soda. So, I set the goal of water and a vitamin. I figured, worse case scenario, before I go to bed, I pop the pill and wash it down, and I've met my goal. And I've done it for about a month now. Yay me!

After about two weeks, I decided to add another goal, and then another, and so on. More to come on all of that later.

Honestly, when exactly did I become obese? This is NOT cool.

And So It Begins...

What would I like readers to know about me?

I'm a mid-30-ish lady who comes with one great hubby, one "too smart for his own good"son, two frisky dingo's (dogs) and a small ocean of fish (some of which are full of attitude and a few that are boring as a rock- you know who you are). Mostly I'm a fun person (or at least I amuse myself) with a wickedly-naughty sense of humor and I am a lady on "fire" with the desire to get it all together and live the life of my dreams!

Why did I choose to join this project? (Read as - how did I get sucked into this?!?!)

I have a mouth that processes faster than my brain and I said "Can you co-host a blog?". But really, as Janet began talking about this - I got goosebumps. Hold on for a long winded story with a point - see I got poison ivy this summer and had to take some meds that made me wacky - and I still have not come down off the high. Since then I have been kicking A@* and taking names later. I am on a crazy organization / purge my life from crap mission. (read as - I bought a label maker, I'm labeling cabinet shelves, ebay is my new trash can, and my family is not sure where their real mother/wife has gone to or returned from) Anyway....It may be a bunch of whooey, but I know that my lowest weight points in life have also been my most organized / got it together times. I don't know what has happened - but I woke up surrounded by lbs and "stuff". So I truly believe that by ridding myself of all the clutter and I peeling off the layers that now surround my body and I will soon expose the "real me" to the world. She's making a return- Look Out! You have been warned!

What do I hope to gain from this experience?
I know I have a "ticker". But really - it's not about the numbers for me. I could live with my current number - if there was a solid, non-jiggling body in the mirror. So there is an idea of the body that I would like to rediscover; and when I get there it won't be based on the numbers. But the numbers are a nice guide. So these are my goals.
1. Bring back the joy of shopping.
Currently, shopping is associated with failure and needing a little more room to breathe. But when you loose weight - shopping is about success. It's fun. And by golly - the clothes look GOOD on you.
2. I'd like some nice arms.
Not crazy man-woman arms. Just some definition and enough muscle that when I flex - you can tell.
3. I'd like to loose the speed bump. Aka - flat(ish) tummy.
I had a C-section 9 years ago and it still shows- and ladies what no one wants to say (but all vertical C-section patients know) is that when you have this procedure and you have extra weight - You have a Butt on your Belly! *you can laugh - but I know deep down, you really are trying to cry with me, so I'm not offended*
4. There will be NO soul-selling!
There will be ice cream and cake. There will be chocolate. There will be the permission to indulge. And YES, there will be bread. Life is not worth living without these things. I choose to live with flavor - thank you. I just won't be having it all super-sized. I need a plan that I can live with.

So, what is your plan?
Well, thanks for asking. Right now my plan is to continue my major house purge - it involves a lot of moving, lifting, bending - I think that's exercise. I have been trying to let go of my beautiful bubbly diet drinks (*sob*). I'm not going to lie -I'd like to crack one open right now. (pause for serious consideration of cracking one open - I hear it calling me from the fridge....shh. in a minute, when we can be alone.) I'm going to continue to be a label reading insane shopper - do you know what they put in your food? gasp. And I'm going to pump up the veggies / fruits. My plan will change - but there is room for change in an evolving person's life, right?

Do you promise to share successes and failures?
Okay, I'm not going to lie - it's going to be way easier to brag about what is going well. But I hope your friendly ears will comfort me should I fall flat on my face. And I hope that a few of us can share the path to the "better us".

....and for the record, I opened a bottle of water! Temptation 0, Regina 1!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Carry that Weight

What would you like readers to know about you?
I'm a 46 year young female. Very much pre-menopausal. (just ask my husband and son) I have been a bit overweight my whole life. Not ever obese but just on the heavy side. In fact the heaviest I ever was, was when I got married. My husband is a great cook but I hate to cook. I enjoy sports and when I can get motivated I actually enjoy exercise. (I even like to sweat) I'm a busy person. I have a full time job, I have an Internet radio station that takes up a great deal of my time, I'm a singer/songwriter/performer and a wife and mother. So, I really don't have a lot of free time.

Why did you choose to join this project?
My best friend asked me. :-) Plus, I'm always striving to be a better person.

What do you hope to gain?
Hopefully not any weight. LOL But seriously, hopefully the impetus to finally get off those 25 pounds that would make me feel healthier. I don't feel the need to be skinny or fit into a size 6. Size 10 would be just fine for me.

When will you feel you have been successful?
In all honesty it's not about the weight loss for me, it's about eating and feeling healthy. I have a six year old son who is a rolling ball of energy from morning till night. I would love to just keep up with him. I've had some health issues over the last year, could be just because I'm getting older, but I feel if I have a healthier lifestyle I might actually not get sick or maybe I can recover from those illnesses quicker.

What is your plan?
Wow, good question. I really don't have one. At this point my plan is to drink more water and start exercising on a regular basis. I am going to try to get back to being a vegetarian again too but I will need to be more careful about getting more protein in my diet. I'm gonna take it one step at a time and see how it goes.

What is your history with this battle?
I've always been a bit overweight. Not obese but just heavy. I've never felt skinny but always longed to. However, now I'm at the point I can accept that this 5'7" body is not inclined to be another Heidi Klum. Both of my parents were amazing cooks. My dad made cookbooks much in the style of Julia Child. (lots of butter and fat) So, everything he made was high calorie. My mom was a dietitian, who actually would at times try to rein in my dad's love for making fatty foods. However, my dad loved to eat what he loved to eat and I loved to eat what my dad made. My husband and I joined Weight Watchers about 15 years ago and I lost about 20-25 pounds but we we moved and I never got back into it. Plus of course my husband lost like 50 pounds and got a pin and everything and I was struggling every week just to maybe lose a pound. So that was discouraging. AND then I gain the weight back again. About 9 years ago I lost weight again because I became really active, running 3 miles everyday and working out. I dramatically changed my diet and I became a vegetarian. I lost once again about 20-25 pounds and felt the healthiest I ever was in my life. But as things always seem to go for me. I fell down a staircase and broke my ankle and lost the enthusiasm for working out. Plus it was damn painful for about a year. I stayed a vegetarian for 8 years though until about two years ago. Some thoughts about why I'm overweight, I've always had low metabolism, I'm a pretty laid back person 90% of the time. I had a bad thyroid for a long time and finally had surgery last year. That helped me some and I have lost about 10 pounds since then. I don't think I'm an emotional eater but it's a possibility.

Do you promise to share success and struggles?
Why the heck do ya think I'm doing this! Keep me honest people!

In The Beginning

Welcome! Welcome! I'm so glad you all could be here! My partners in crime weight loss will be posting soon to introduce themselves. For now, here is everything you ever wanted to know about Janet (but were too polite to ask).

What would you like readers to know about you?
Many of you read my other blog Stuff I Think About and already know more than you should about my life. In a nutshell, I'm 37, divorced (after 13 years of marriage) for four years, no children (I love them, just haven't had the privilege at this point in time), two fabulous dogs (Daisy and Rudy) and three iffy cats (Tigger, Sammie, and Beavis). I have a great job working with child care providers. My hobbies include reading, decorating, garage sales, yoga, and walking (okay, clearly not enough of those last two things lately).

Why did you choose to join this project?
I've loved blogging on my own for a while, but my other blog is pretty random. I wanted another project that would be more structured. You know, have like a story to it? I also seriously need to get back in shape. I figured the two goals could compliment each other. And if I blogged about my weight loss journey, I would be more likely to actually do something. Because I do not want to come back here next week and tell ya'll that I sat on my butt all week eating ice cream and gained a pound. That would make me look silly. I have a couple friends with similar goals, so this project was born.

What do you hope to gain?
Obviously, my main goal is to lose just shy of 50 pounds. (Really?! Is it that much?! How did that happen?!) I hope this blog will help keep me on track by making me accountable for my actions and by recording and celebrating the smallest successes. (You'll notice the .2 on my ticker. If I lose even .1 lbs each week, we are partying around here.) I also hope to help out a few friends along the way. Not just my two co-authors, but all of you who choose to follow along on our journey.

What is your plan?
I don't have a plan exactly. It's kind of my own thing, which I'll admit was inspired by various articles I've read, things I've seen on tv, etc... where a person is encouraged to make one small change at a time. I'm not making drastic changes all at once. I'm calling it Baby Steps. No pressure. We'll see how it works out for me!

What is your history with this battle?
I am not one of those people who was always chubby, has struggled with weight all my life, etc... My mom had to buy me the "slim" jeans when I was a kid. I could actually wear children's clothing for most of high school. My favorite dress was a size two. Of course, I thought I was fat then. I soooo wasn't. But, into adulthood, I think I've put on like five pounds a year. At one point ten years ago, I lost a bunch of weight (and no, I don't recall exactly how or why) and got down to 112 lbs. and a size 4 to 6. That lasted about a day, then I started going up again. And here I sit (on my couch eating ice cream) the biggest I've ever been.

Do you promise to share both success and struggles?
I do solemnly swear, for better or worse.