Friday, January 29, 2010

Weigh In and Measurement Update!

I weighed in this morning at 197.0 lbs. I was hoping it'd be less, but it's a loss so I can't complain. I also did my measurements and I've definitely seen some losses there, so that makes me really happy! I guess doing the shred videos has caused me to lose fat and gain muscle, so even though my weight hasn't gone down a ton I think it's mostly due to the gain in muscle mass. I definitely feel stronger and I have noticed my clothes feeling and looking better. Here are my new measurements.

Neck: 13.75 (-0.25)
Bicep: 12.5 (-0.5)
Forearm: 9.75 (no change)
Chest: 43.0 (-3.0)
Waist: 37.5 (-2.5)
Hips: 45.5 (-1.5)
Thigh: 23.75 (-0.75)
Calf: 14.5 (-0.75)
Total: 200.25 (-9.25)

I'm very happy to see the decrease in the chest and waist and the hips aren't far behind. I need to lose at least 1.5 more inches in the waist to fit into the bridesmaid dress that I ordered, although I'd like to lose even more since the wedding isn't until June and they tell us the dresses run small. Ideally I'd like my measurements to get down to the size below the one I ordered to ensure a good fit, so for that I'd need to lose another 3 inches in the chest, 5.5 inches in the waist (ouch!) and 2 inches in the hips. I definitely think it's doable. I'm averaging 1.5 inches a month for the bust, 1.25 inches a month for the waist and 0.75 inches a month for the hips. I'll definitely need to kick it into high gear a little to reach these numbers, but I think it's doable. The dresses aren't supposed to arrive till the end of March, so I've got another two months to work my ass off (literally)!

Also, as an overview here's what I've accomplished over the last two months.

December - 4.8 lbs lost - 4 inches lost
January - 4.2 lbs lost - 5.25 inches lost

I am a little disappointed that I'm only averaging 4.5 lbs a month. I really wish it were more like 8 lbs, but at least I'm making progress. I just have to keep plugging away and I'll keep seeing the numbers go down and that's the important thing.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

TMI Thursday

TMI Thursday

I've been trying to think of stories to tell lately and have been coming up dry, so I'm going to pull out an oldie, but a goodie. I have a brother who's about a year and a half older than me. Growing up it was always the two of us playing together. Well, when we'd watch cartoons we'd lay down on the floor in front of the TV on our bellies with our heads propped up on our hands. Well one day when we were probably 2 and 3 or 3 and 4 years old he was laying down just so and I decided to walk over to him squat down until my butt touched his head and fart on his head. Lol, I can't believe I'm telling this story.

My brother of course was disgusted and wanted to run to our parents for support to yell at me and tell me not to do that, but my parents thought it was hilarious. So needless to say, the next time he was laying on the floor and I had to fart and my parents were in the room, I'd walk over and fart on his head and my parents would laugh. Lol. Oh the joy of siblings. To this day this is a running story we still tell, because it pretty much guarantees a laugh. I've long since passed the time where I was embarrassed by this story, now it's just funny to me. So there you have it, I used to fart on my brother's head when I was little to make people laugh. :-)

Monday, January 25, 2010

One More Thing...

I totally forgot to mention this international grocery store Steve and I went to! We love ethnic food be it Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Mexican, Indian, Vietnamese, Korean...you name it, we love it. That's probably one of the main reasons we go out to eat. We don't know how to cook these types of food ourselves, so we go to restaurants to get our fix for whatever we're craving. Anywho, we were driving around on Saturday and drove past this international grocery store. He mentioned how some of his fellow grad students had talked about this place, so we turned around and went back to check it out.

We didn't have a ton of money to go crazy with, but we had enough to pick up a little something to cook for dinner. The selection of fresh meat and seafood was just insane! We decided we would go the Korean route since we had rice at home and a common Korean dish is Bool Kogi which is basically marinated beef and it is traditionally served with rice. We found this thinly sliced ribeye (probably not what's typically used, but that's what we got) and we went to the Korean aisle and got a small bottle of short rib bbq sauce. So, it wasn't Bool Kogi exactly, but it was similar in the sense that it was thinly slice beef marinated in sesame bbq sauce. It was really good!

It was just fun to see all these foods that we love at this grocery store where we can buy and prepare things for ourselves at home. So we get to satisfy any cravings we may have, while still having control over how things are cooked and exactly what we're putting in our bodies. We saw so many things we wanted to buy, so we will definitely be going back. I just love knowing that pretty much anything we could want is available at this grocery store, so we don't have to give up food we love. Oh yeah, and King Crab legs...I'll be back for you. :-)

Happy Monday

I hope everyone had a good weekend. I sure did. It was pretty mellow, which I love, and for the most part I made good food choices. We didn't go out to eat once, which is very rare for us on the weekends. I did really well with food all day Saturday and most of Sunday...until late last night. It was just one of those times where you feel this gravitational pull toward your fridge and nothing seems to be able to stop you. I didn't go too crazy. It started out with a bag of 100 calorie pretzel thins. Then I had some of the leftover chicken from dinner, not a ton, maybe two ounces or so, but it had sauce on it, so it wasn't just plain chicken. Then I had this Jimmy Dean chicken breakfast sandwich. That was probably the thing with the most calories. All in all, though, I can forgive myself for my little binge. I know I should have controlled myself better, but I also know I've been doing so well since I weighed in that this won't completely foil my weight loss goals and after all it was only one night.

I've been doing the shred and cycling every single day, except for yesterday. My calves and thighs were feeling really sore, so I made the executive decision to take the day off. I'll be back to it tonight, so taking the day off won't kill me. I've been checking in on the scale and things seem to be going in the right direction. I hope everyone is having an awesome Monday!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Holy Protein Batman!

I had a great day yesterday. I was in a good mood, eating the right things, doing the exercise. All that fun stuff. Usually I exercise in the evenings after work and don't eat dinner until I'm done exercising. However, yesterday I decided I was going to cook a ton of chicken in the crock pot. I put it in there with some chicken bouillon that I dissolved in some hot water and threw in some Mrs. Dash to boot. I hadn't intended to eat anything until after exercising, but then Steve decided he was going to have some chicken about an hour, hour and a half before I was going to work out, so I figured what the heck. I'll eat some chicken before.

The chicken was good, but I still ended up adding a Tbsp of this Mandarin Sauce I bought from Panda Express and at 30 calories it was totally worth the extra flavor. All in all I had a little under 7 oz of chicken (nothing else) and maybe 20 minutes later I had this huge surge of energy! I was bopping around dancing like an idiot, freaking my dogs out. I felt like I could go out and run a marathon. It was just crazy the amount of energy I had. I guess I need to focus on having some protein about an hour before I work out, because the energy boost was insane!

Also, I heard in a few different places that having milk after a workout helps your muscles recover. Now I'm lactose intolerant, so me and milk don't really usually happen. But the different places had touted 8 oz of low fat chocolate milk, so I figured what the heck. I'll try it and see if it messes up my stomach too much. So we went to Costco the other day and picked up some Organic Reduced Fat Chocolate Milk. At 190 calories, 5 grams of fat, 30% Calcium and Vitamin D and 10% Vitamin A it's not too bad of a snack. Us women always need as much calcium as we can get, so that's a bonus. Luckily it hasn't really messed with my stomach at all. Maybe it's because it's just 8 oz? Or the chocolate? I don't know, but it doesn't mess with me, tastes good and "supposedly" helps my muscles repair themselves, so why the heck not.

Steve wants to go out with some friends tonight. I'm a little nervous about that calorie wise, but I'll just have to plan on having a light beer or two and that's all. That won't hurt things too much and I'm sure it'll be a good time. But this place serves food too...oh bar food how I love thee, let me count the ways. Lol, but I will be strong. Hopefully the people we will be with will not be ordering food, so that would make it easier, but who knows. If other people get food I know Steve will want to get food too. Grrrr...well I'll just have to wait and see and I'll try and make the best decisions I can.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Not As Bad As It Seems

I weighed in this morning and it came in at 198.8 lbs, so my increase is not nearly as bad as I thought. Yesterday I mentioned that I hoped it was a temporary gain and after one day of tracking calories it appears it was. I'm so glad to see it went down and that I'm only one pound over my lowest weight. That I can deal with.

Yesterday I did great with my food. I even had a kickass dinner with yummy yummy beef. Bool Kogi to be exact. Or Bool Gogee, depending on where you get it from. Anyone it's a marinated Korean barbecue and we buy it from Trader Joe's (versus going to a restaurant) so we know how many calories and fat, etc. are in it. Let me just say, yum. Just add some rice, break out the chopsticks and there you go. :-)

Yesterday I consumed 1,604 calories. I burned 657 calories from exercise (30 Day Shred and Cycling - yes I already changed my mind back and will be cycling and doing the shred every day for the rest of the month) and 1,958 calories for my normal daily activities (according to FitDay) for a total of 2,615 calories burned. That leaves me with a daily deficit of 1,011 calories. Not too shabby!

As you can probably tell I'm feeling much more positive today. I found myself an accountabilibuddy. Hopefully she'll stick it out and we'll both make some major progress. Other than that, that's it. Life is good and I am happy. :-)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Weigh In??? Not So Pretty...

As I promised I weighed in first thing this morning and what was my weight you ask...200.0 lbs. I'm hoping this is more of a temporary gain and that I didn't actually do this much damage. I'm glad I weighed in though. I needed to see where I'm at to push me to get down to business. I did cycle last night, but I didn't do the shred. I've decided I'm going to do the shred every day for the rest of the month and not cycle for now. The shred gets me sweating way more than cycling does and leaves my muscles fully exhausted. Cycling is good as it helps me continue to burn fat after doing the shred, however, I haven't been sticking to this routine, so I need to change it up. So for the next 12 days I am going to shred every single day and I'll probably continue shredding into February to get the full 30 days.

I've been lacking in motivation lately, as I mentioned yesterday, and I think just blogging about it here and reading other blogs has helped get me on track mentally. From now on when I'm feeling down I need to blog about it instead of completely alienating the blog world. I get embarrassed when I'm not making progress, so I don't blog, but that just ends up being a self fulfilling prophecy. Because I don't talk about my feelings then I just continue to wallow in them and eat poorly. Today is a new day and I'm going to make healthy choices and do the shred and I'm going to stay focused for the rest of the month.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Where'd My Motivation Go????

I've been struggling lately on the motivation front...big time. I haven't worked out since last week Wednesday and I haven't been tracking calories. I had a friend coming to stay with me this weekend and I just.didn't.want to. Grrr. I know this isn't the right way to act and doing this is going to keep me from ever reaching my goal and that just isn't an option. I have a healthy dinner planned for tonight, so that's a step in the right direction and I'm going to work out tonight, no matter what.

Do you think I should just try and do the shred every day and cut out the cycling? Maybe then I could make myself stick to working out every day. Or am I just being a big fat baby and I need to suck it up and do both? I have the time, time is not my issue, motivation is. Any suggestions for what I can do to get my head back in the game? I really need some love right now.

I'm going to eat my healthy dinner, exercise tonight...and weigh in tomorrow. I need to see where I'm at instead of continuing to go along blindly. I hope I haven't done too much damage, but we shall see. I think I'll write up a meal plan for myself for tomorrow as well. That way I don't have to think about food I just have to eat what my plan tells me.

Honestly, it's been weird lately. The past few days we've had plenty of food in the house and I just stare in the pantry and the fridge/freezer and then walk away. Nothing sounds appealing. Or, even worse, I end up eating something even though it doesn't sound appealing and then I don't even enjoy it. I think I need to start throwing some new healthy recipes into my arsenal and maybe that will wake up the sleeping dragon.

Friday, January 15, 2010

This Week

I had a pretty good week, not perfect, but I'm getting better. Monday - Wednesday I averaged 1,365 calories a day. I did the shred Monday-Wednesday and cycled just on Monday and Tuesday. Then yesterday I was just feeling exhausted. I swear to god if the cleaning lady hadn't been here I would have taken like 5 naps. Instead I'm sitting at my computer, trying to focus on work, but mostly just trying to keep my eyes open. I was still planning to exercise and was going to cook a healthy dinner, but was going to go to bed early.

Then I got the mail...and a takeout menu for a Chinese restaurant. Now you have to understand something, we've only lived in Indianapolis for 7 1/2 months and we've only lived in the house we bought for 5 months. We love going out to restaurants, but have had trouble finding good ones. We've yet to find a good Italian restaurant and also hadn't found a good Chinese restaurant and I can't even count the number of times I said I wished I knew of a Chinese restaurant that delivers. I had even done extensive research and called a bunch of places to find one flippin restaurant that delivers, but to no avail. Then I get this menu in the mail. I swear to god as soon as I saw it, I knew we'd be ordering takeout. We've been waiting for something to come in the mail and Steve texts me to ask me if it arrived and I said no, but we got a Chinese takeout menu. He immediately asks if there's a website so he can look up the menu and we can order in dinner.

Ugh, we are so weak! I was trying to be good and on their website there was a picture of lemon chicken. It looked like it was this grilled or baked chicken that appeared to have been cooked in the lemon sauce so it looked slightly crispy on the outside without any crazy amounts of sauce covering it, but there was no breading. The order arrives and not only is it breaded, but they gave me enough chicken for probably 5 meals (assuming I ate a healthy portion) and the lemon sauce is in a separate soup container. The good thing about this place is that it's inexpensive, they have a lot of variety and the food tasted really fresh. So I definitely have the opportunity to make better choices should we order from them again...who am I kidding, when we order from them again.

Ah well, we live and we learn. I did not weigh in this morning, because I knew my weight was going to be off based on the large amount of food I ate last night. I swear to god I pooed like 4 or 5 times since I ate last night (should this be a TMI Thursday??)! My weekend should be interesting since I have friends coming to town to stay with us, which always makes it hard for me to make good decisions, but at the same time I don't want to blow all of my hard work. Then on Friday is this event for Steve's school and we have no idea what the food is like there, we just assume it's going to be some sort of buffet style meal.

I need to learn how to cook more interesting, healthy meals at home so I don't feel the need to go out to get "good" food. I like the food I eat at home, but I tend to look at it more like I'm just eating what I'm supposed to eat and not getting as much enjoyment out of it so then I end up looking elsewhere for an enjoyable food experience. I will weigh in next week on Wednesday or so and hopefully I will show a drop. I'm still struggling with this food thing. Any advice?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Outback and The Shred

Last night after work we had to take two of our cats to the vet. To be honest our normal routine would be to get fast food on our way home since it would be getting a bit later and we wouldn't want to make dinner, basically because we're lazy. However, last night we decided we were going to go out to eat, but we wanted to go to a sit down place. We ended up deciding on Outback. It took a little hairpulling with Steve to pick a place. He just wanted us to figure it out once we were out and about and I said no, I'm sorry but that doesn't work for me. The majority of the restaurants near our house are chains and so I can easily access their nutrition info online. I told him that I'm serious about counting calories and getting my exercise in and all that and so that means if we go out to eat I need to sit down ahead of time and plan what I'm going to eat. So we needed to pick a place, so that I could figure out what I should eat before we leave the house.

We ended up picking Outback as I said, well really I picked it. And here's what I ate:
1/2 loaf of the Bushman's Honey Wheat Bread - 69 calories (without butter)
1/2 of the Regular Sized Seared Ahi Tuna - 216 calories
Classic Roasted Filet Wedge Salad - 562 calories
Total - 847 calories

I wasn't planning on eating any of the bread, but alas I ended up eating nearly half the loaf. Probably closer to a third, but I'd rather overcompensate than under. I love seared Ahi, so I went for that as an appetizer especially since it's a pretty low cal appetizer. They do have a seared Ahi salad which I really like, but for some reason the nutrition info wasn't on their website. Instead I went for the Roasted Filet Wedge Salad that I also really like. Let me just say, it's awesome. First of all the meat is like 4 thin slices of prime rib, so you get your beef fix but there's not too much of it. Then it's a basic wedge salad with a hunk of iceberg with red onions and cherry tomatoes drizzled in blue cheese dressing with blue cheese crumbles. Let me just say YUM!!

My entire days calories came in at 1,370 so I was still well within my daily calorie goal. Obviously I had had a pretty light day up until that point. It wasn't planned, but I'm glad it worked out that way. I had had coffee with cream, oatmeal and a frozen lean cuisine meal and that's it. I'll remind you that recently I went out to eat at Olive Garden and my meal was over 1400 calories, I believe. That's more than I had in the entire day yesterday! Talk about a much better eating out experience. I actually got to enjoy my food and didn't have to feel guilty about it, because I knew I wasn't going overboard calorie wise. It was a little on the high side fat wise, but overall I'm happy with how the day went.

I also came home, even after eating that big salad, and did the shred as well as my 10 miles cycling. It just feels good to know you're making healthy choices and still allowing yourself to enjoy food and enjoy life as a whole. I'm starting to get better at the moves on The Shred dvd, so that's good. It feels good to see myself making progress so quickly. I've still got a ways to go before I even think about moving on to Level 2, but for now things are going well. Here are some pics I had Steve take of me last night after doing the Shred and cycling. I had taken pictures previously, but I was only wearing a sports bra and shorts and I'm just not brave enough to post those pics so here you go.


I also wanted to ask for some advice. We're planning on going out for sushi with some friends Saturday night. Any suggestions on what to eat? I don't actually do the raw sashimi, although I'll see if they have seared ahi since that's as raw as I'll go. Anyway, any suggestions? We usually end up ordering a few of the rolls but they're mostly the hot rolls that end up having tempura crumbles or that spicy mayo sauce or whatever. I'll do a little research to see what I should go for, but I'd love any suggestions anyone might have.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Harumph!!!

Last night I put dinner in the oven and was getting ready to do the shred. Steve was home and didn't have any school stuff, so I asked if he wanted to do it with me. While he was on break from school we talked about cycling together (we have a stationary bike and road bikes and a bike trainer) and doing the shred together, but never got around to it so I thought he'd be up for it. But no, he talked about how he was afraid if he did it his back would hurt the next day. Granted, he does have some bad back and pain issues, but I truly feel like if he would just start to exercise regularly it would get better, not worse. I know there's some truth to his reason, but mostly I feel like it's an excuse.

He's gotten on my case so many times about how he wants to eat healthier and exercise and he feels like I'm the one always dragging my feet about it. However, I'm the one who lost 27 pounds once before (although I gained it all back plus another two pounds) and now I'm working on losing it again and then some and keeping it off. Meanwhile, he's basically stayed roughly the same throughout that entire time (maybe even gained a bit, not really sure since he doesn't weigh himself much at all) and never really changed anything about his habits. He still ate what he want and didn't exercise even though he had talked about wanting to make some big changes.

It's just frustrating, because I know he's unhappy and wants to make changes, but then he doesn't ever act on it and actually try to eat fewer calories or exercise. I love him to death and just want him to be happy, you know. I really think that if I stick with it and continue to progress and stick with my healthy eating and exercise plan that eventually he'll start to follow suit. I just wish he would have looked at last night as an opportunity to do something about it, even if it was just for one day. Oh well. I just need to focus on myself and hopefully my changes will inspire him to make his health a priority in the near future.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Fiber, Fiber Where Have You Gone

I recently read a post where someone made a comment that the person should be getting 25g of fiber a day. Fiber is something I definitely think about, but I hadn't actually paid attention to how much fiber I was getting at the end of each and every day. Luckily I've been tracking my food most days on FitDay, so I just went back and looked over my fiber intake since I started tracking my food on December 8th.

I realized I'm not getting nearly enough fiber. On average I'm only getting 16.6g of fiber each day. One day I actually got just 5.9g of fiber! I didn't have any idea it was that low! So I thought about it and realized there are probably a number of us that aren't getting nearly enough fiber in our diets. I did a little research and found out which fruits and vegetables have the most fiber. There are more than I'll list here, but these are the fruits and veggies I like the most. I also figured out how many calories you had to consume for each gram of fiber you got out of the food, that way we can try and get the most fiber bang for our calorie buck (this is where my number's nerdy side of me comes out).

Vegetables (1 cup cooked)
1. Artichoke (1 medium) - 85 calories / 6.5g fiber = 13.1 calories per gram of fiber
2. Broccoli - 103 calories / 6g fiber = 17.2 calories per
3. Carrots - 83 calories / 4.4g fiber = 18.9 calories per
4. Green Peas - 167 calories / 8.8g fiber = 19.0 calories per
5. Cauliflower - 82 calories / 4.3g fiber = 19.1 calories per
6. Green Beans - 83 calories / 4.3g fiber = 19.3 calories per
7. Asparagus - 73 calories / 3.6g fiber = 20.3 calories per
8. Brussel Sprouts - 89 calories / 4g fiber = 22.3 calories per
9. Mushrooms - 77 calories / 3.4g fiber = 22.6 calories per
10. Edamame - 189 calories / 8.1g fiber = 23.3 calories per

Fruits (raw, not cooked)
1. Raspberries (1 cup) - 64 calories / 8g fiber = 8.0 calories per
2. Blackberries (1 cup) - 62 calories / 7.6g fiber = 8.2 calories per
3. Strawberries (1 cup) - 49 calories / 3.0g fiber = 16.3 calories per
4. Orange (1 medium) - 62 calories / 3.1g fiber = 20.0 calories per
5. Kiwi (1 fruit) - 47 calories / 2.3g fiber = 20.4 calories per
6. Apple (1 medium) - 72 calories / 3.3g fiber = 21.8 calories per
7. Blueberries (1 cup) - 83 calories / 3.5g fiber = 23.7 calories per
8. Banana (1 medium) - 105 calories / 3.1g fiber = 33.9 calories per
9. Dried Cranberries (1 cup) - 339 calories / 6.3g fiber = 53.8 calories per


Wow, so raspberries and blackberries are the clear winner here. It's funny the things you don't realize that can make such a big impact. I mean, I have a bit of a sweet tooth, so say I take a cup of raspberries and top that with 4 Tbsp of Reddi Whip Original Light Whipped Cream. That would give me an awesome dessert to satisfy my sweets craving for less than 100 calories and I'd get 8g of fiber. Not too shabby!

I also wanted to include a dried fruit, because while they do get you a good amount of fiber they also take up a large portion of your daily calories to get there. It just goes to show that going the fresh route is a much better choice! I'm really glad I took the time to look into this, because seeing the numbers and seeing everything in black and white like this makes it clear what small changes can make a bigger impact on our overall diets. It's taking the time to educate ourselves on issues like this that help us to make more informed decisions and fix areas where we may not realize we are lacking.

Back To The Grind

Wow, I have been out of the loop for nearly a week. My boyfriend has been on break for school, so that's made me feel like I should be on break too. I haven't exercised since December 31st. That's just insane. Although, I did go bowling and put in a decent amount of shoveling, but I haven't done any true exercising. That ends tonight. I'm going to do the 30 day shred and cycle. I'm looking forward to getting back into the swing of things. We have guests coming to stay with us this weekend, so I really need to make this week count and not stray from my eating and exercising.

For the week, I plan to exercise Monday through Friday and keep my calories under 1600. Then my best friend and her fiance will be getting here Friday evening and staying until Sunday morning. We've already planned on going out to eat on Saturday night and then Sunday night after they're gone I have this function to go to with Steve where I don't really have control over what food is being served. I just need to do my best to make the best choices I can and not overeat. So, like I said, I need to be focused this week since I have a busy weekend ahead of me and will be eating out twice.

Aside from that things have been going well for me. It's been great being able to spend some quality time with Steve. His classes for the semester started up today, so we'll be getting into a better routine. As much as I enjoyed him being off for a while it's much easier to stay focused when he's busy with classes and studying and research.

Here's to the start of a great week!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Failure? I don't think so!

I've been feeling a bit like a failure lately with my food issues and the difficult time I've had making positive choices. I didn't let it completely get me off track, but I was feeling a bit disappointed in myself. I was planning to do my normal weigh-in on Friday and figured I'd do a quick weigh-in today just to see where I'm at, since I haven't weighed myself for quite a few days probably since my last weigh-in actually.

I step on the scale hoping it's not higher than last time, hoping it's at least gone down a little and I weigh in at 197.8 lbs! Talk about a boost. I know you're not supposed to let the scale rule you, but I needed a little reminder than I am doing a lot of things right. I'm trying to eat more vegetables, I'm counting calories, I'm drinking lots of water, I'm taking a multivitamin every day and I'm exercising and, believe it or not, it is making a difference.

It's easy to let one wacky weigh in get you down, but now I can see it was more of a temporary gain. It was my time of the month and my body was working on getting rid of some of the foods I had indulged in over the holidays. I think since those two issues have worked themselves out my weight has gotten down to where it's supposed to be given what I've been doing most of the time which are the right things.

I know this is a process and I thank god I started this blog. There may not be a ton of people that read it, but for the few that do I feel like I owe it to them to post what's going on, to post my feelings good or bad. And what starts as me just posting because I owe it to them turns into me posting because it's helping me sort out my feelings. Here's to a good rest of the week!

Monday, January 4, 2010

How Did I Get Here?

I just got done reading JewliaGoulia's blog and she was discussing what got here to the point she was at. I always felt like I knew why I was fat, so why sit down and think about it or write about it. It wasn't really a conscious decision not to write about, but it's something that I haven't done and I realized it would probably help to write out the reasons why I got where I am, so I can keep those reasons from holding me back in the future.

I guess it started with bad eating habits growing up. I love my mom to death, but she is an emotional eater and a yo yo dieter. Growing up watching those bad habits causes you to pick up those things. Then she also always made sure to cook a full meal with chicken, potatoes and a vegetable. Now I give credit to her for always cooking a vegetable, but we always smothered it in butter or a cheese sauce or something. And then the portions of meat and potatoes were always way more than they needed to be. Then on top of that my step dad always had this thing about not wanting to waste food (and Steve to this day also pressures me not to "waste" food, even though we're trying to lose weight, does this make sense to you?). All of these things combined started me off with a bad relationship with food. I was always active in dance, cheerleading, etc., so the bad eating didn't cause me to be overweight at all so I "looked" healthy all of the way through high school.

Then there was my dad. Our relationship was always up and down up and down. One minute it's fine and the next we're having issues. On top of that he lived in California while I grew up in Wisconsin making it hard for us to form a healthy relationship or deal with any issues that we may have. My step mom is a very petite woman and has never had any weight problems, so it was hard for her to understand my struggles. They would often try to help by talking to me about my weight problem, but since we lived so far away from one another it seemed like that was all they were concerned about. I felt like they wanted me to be perfect and there was no way I could live up to their expectations, so why even try.

Throughout college my weight went up and down. My eating habits were nearly always bad. We drank a lot and had pizza at the end of each night of drinking. This was definitely not a healthy style I was living. Then my two best friends at the time were drop dead gorgeous without any weight issues. One was naturally tall and lean and the other was shorter and petite. It was difficult seeing us all eating the same thing and seeing how differently it affected the 3 of us. I was the only one that was heavy even though we were all eating the same things. We lived together and made meals together, so it felt so unfair that I was overweight and they looked great. My best friend would even joke about how she could eat more than me and I'd laugh it off, but inside it was always so frustrating. She did eat more than me, yet she was a size 2 or 4. Talk about unfair. If you want an experiment in metabolism, just look at me and my roommates in college.

I'd go through periods where I'd try to eat less in college and I'd work out and it would bring my weight down temporarily, but it'd always end up going back up. I was trying to live and eat as they did, but for me and my body that just didn't work. Then on top of that I had to deal with the guys that were interested in my friends always coming to talk to me about them. Every guy I was interested in always seemed more interested in one of them. It just made me depressed and pushed me to continue emotional eating rather than try to get healthy.

Then I moved to California, in part to be closer to my dad and try and improve our relationship and in part to just try something new, start over on my own. I moved into a house with a party guy and we literally had parties more often than I care to remember. At the time I was having a blast, living in a new state, meeting new people, but that lifestyle was not healthy. I was working on finding a job and having more trouble than I had anticipated. I did some temp work and then got a part-time job as a nanny. I was still looking for full time work, but in the meantime the nanny gig didn't pay enough to cover my rent and expenses.

I had to move in with my dad and step mom whom I'd always had a strained relationship. To say it was uncomfortable living with them is an understatement. I just didn't feel at home there. We were still working through some of our issues, but at the time I didn't want to be living there and didn't have any choice. Not feeling comfortable there was a blessing in some senses. It caused me to start going to the gym every day after work (I had found a good full time job) to take up some of the time that would have been spent at the house. I'd shower at the gym, drive home, heat up a quick frozen meal, eat it, go to my room, watch tv for a little while (with the door closed) and then go to bed. That was my routine every day. I got down to 160 lbs, the lowest I had been since high school when I was probably 140 or so.

I moved out and continued with my exercise schedule. Then I met Steve. We got into that lovey dovey mode where we spent all of our time together eating out or watching movies or whatever. My new exercise habits went completely out the window. Over then next 4 1/2 years I gained 45 lbs and he gained weight as well. Now there have been plenty of times where the two of us have tried to be healthier (I even lost 27 pounds at one point), but we are our own worst enemies. One of us will have a hard day and suggest we go out to eat or pick up fast food and rather than the other saying no and trying to keep us on the right path we give in. There were plenty of times where I remember hoping he'd suggest we eat out, literally just sitting there waiting for him to suggest it so it wouldn't be my fault since I wasn't the one who suggested it. And more often than not he didn't let me down and I didn't let him down and was raring to go.

We'd go through this cycle of being frustrated with our weight gain and both truly wanting to change, but neither would really take the reins to improve our situation. We both wanted the other to lead, but unfortunately neither of us are a natural leader in this arena. I feel like either of us were in a relationship with someone who was naturally healthy and would lead us we both would have no problem following suit, but having to be the leader seemed to be a problem for both of us. Steve would always be the one to bring up his frustrations and then I'd try to take the lead but eventually I'd get tired of being the one to plan everything and I'd give up. Then the cycle would repeat itself. We both hate where we're at, but we both have troubles sticking with it and making healthy choices. We love healthy foods, love vegetables and fruit, but we love crappy food just as much and therein lies our problem.

At this point I've decided just to focus on me. I'm not thinking about the bad habits I learned growing up or my relationships that caused me to emotionally eat or whether or not it's fair that I have to be the planner when it comes to bringing healthy food into our home. I've learned that I need to focus on myself each and every day, telling myself to make better choices. Going to the grocery store with a plan on what to buy so I can make healthy choices. Tracking calories throughout the day so there is no lying about whether or not I'm eating too much. There's nowhere to hide with your food choices when you're tracking everything. Steve can choose whether or not to follow suit. I hope he will, but I can't make myself responsible for his successes or failures.

And I'm setting goals for myself as far as my exercise goes. My first big goal I stuck to and achieved it (cycling 300 miles). Now it's time for me to set a new exercise goal. By the end of January I want to have cycled at least 180 miles (roughly 45 miles per week). I also want to have done the 30 day shred video at least 18 times (4-5 times per week). My plan is to exercise Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and to have rest days on Thursday and Sunday. I feel like if I don't have rest days I don't see as good of results as when I do. So the plan for my exercise days is to do the shred video and then 10 miles on my bike. If I stick to my schedule over the next 4 weeks I would actually cycle 200 miles and do the shred 20 times, but I want to give myself a little leeway in case something comes up and I miss a day or two. I'm not planning on missing any days, but in case something happens and I just can't get my workout in I don't want to set myself up for disappointment feeling like I failed. I want to set goals that will push me, but also that I know I can reach.

Setting food goals for me is hard. I don't really know what they should be, but I know I should have tangible goals that I can look at at the end of the month and know whether I've met my goals or not. I guess I need to think about this. What do you think my food goals should be? I know I should keep my calories in the 1400-1600 range. I guess maybe I could say my calories need to be within that range for at least x number of days this month? Or I could set a goal for eating a certain number of vegetables each day for at least x days this month? Or is there a different goal I should set? Help me out here I could really use some ideas on what my food goals should be and I would love some feedback. Food is my biggest issue, so setting goals here would probably help me. So what do you think my food goals should be?

Friday, January 1, 2010

MIA

Hey guys, sorry I've been kind of MIA lately. I've taken a much needed week off of work, but that means I haven't wanted to go anywhere near the computer (well at least not much) since I spend my entire work week every week seated right in front of this dang thing and a week off meant a week where I didn't need to be glued to my chair.

I haven't completely fallen off the face of the earth, so don't worry, I'm still here. I did weigh in yesterday morning and it looks like my poor eating habits over the holidays are catching up with me. I weighed in at 201.2 lbs. Obviously, not what I wanted to see, but I can't say I don't deserve it based on what I've been eating. Food truly is the hard part for me. I see Jen's blog over at Ex Hot Girl and she doesn't waver in her eating. Even over the holidays she sticks to her plan. I wish I could be that strong, but it's definitely hard for me. I see all of that food and I just can't seem to help myself. The holidays have come and gone, we're starting a new year 2010, and all I can do is strive to overcome these bad habits that I have. It's not going to be easy for me, but I am all in when it comes to losing weight. I may make some mistakes and not be as consistent as I'd like to be, but I'm in this for the long haul. I really want to make this change permanent. I'm just lucky I have all of you to keep me accountable and to inspire me not to give up, so thanks for that.

One positive update, I have kept up on my cycling and I did meet my 300 mile goal by the end of the year. It took all of the way to the very end of the year, but I completed 300.10 miles as of 12/31/2009. Throughout the month of December I cycled a total of 21.15 hours. So I cycled an average of 66.7 miles a week for a total of 4.70 hours each week. That's not too shabby! I may be having troubles in the food area, but at least here I achieved a goal I set for myself and for that I am proud.

I've also started doing Jillian's 30 Day Shred and let me tell you it's way harder than I anticipated! I can do every move that they do, but it's definitely no piece of cake, but why would I want it to be easy. I end up having to stop and catch my breath every now and again, but overall I can do everything so I'm bound to improve as time goes on. Plus, I'm actually sore afterward...like everywhere. It's definitely a feeling of accomplishment when you're entire body is sore. And when it's sore from a measly 20 minute exercise session, who can argue with that!

So I'm still here and I need to get back on track food-wise, but I'm trucking along. I look forward to seeing what we all can accomplish in 2010.