Archive | July, 2012

Categorizing diets

31 Jul

I never got a chance to post last week, but I was at 212. A modest loss, but a loss all the same. 🙂  I think this week I’ll be up, but this is a learning process, so mistakes will get made.

Last week I worked out with my trainer twice and went to yoga on Saturday. In yoga we had a different instructor than the one I’ve really come to like, and she had us do a stretch which totally messed up my back. I’ve had lower back issues for the last few years, and I should have known better and skipped the stretch. But I wasn’t really thinking about it, and man I’m paying now. Ugh.

I’ve been thinking about a post I want to make about diets. It seems like there are two ways of going about it:
1. Limit the types of foods you can eat – with the idea that you don’t have to worry about calories if you’re only eating specific foods
2. calorie counting or some other tracking mechanism which does something similar

Interestingly, last time I checked out Weight Watchers, they actually have two programs, one that follows #1 and one that follows the point system which is basically #2. There is of course those programs that combine the two as well.

Anyway, all this is to say that I’m trying to replace bad foods with good foods and go for #1. I’ve been avoiding #2 because I hate calorie counting, but I really think that if I want to be serious about losing weight, I will need to do #2. Perhaps as I change my eating habits I can move into #1, which would be a great place to be for maintenance. But wow, I hate counting calories.

I have a pretty messed up relationship with food. When I was a kid, we were homeless for 14 months, when I was in 5th and 6th grades. I never went hungry that I remember, but I know we had a lot of rice and beans because they are so cheap. We used to also get cans from the store in which the labels had fallen off as they were either free or heavily discounted (I don’t remember). My parents were great, they made a game out of it. I always loved when it was my turn to pick a “mystery can” and my parents would make a meal around it. However, it has left me with this ongoing feeling that being able to have ANY food is something that should be taken advantage of, because you never know when you’ll be back to rice and beans. Unsurprisingly, when we finally got stable surroundings and were able to get more food variety, I gained weight. I’ve been heavy pretty much since 7th grade.

Secondly, when I was fresh out of college, I began dating a guy who had lost a lot of weight. He told me he just had one meal a day, and made sure he didn’t eat very many calories in that one meal. I lost 85 lbs by eating < 600 calories a day. Of course, I also ended up hospitalized and with serious physical fallout, but y’know, SKINNY! So the reason calorie counting worries me is because it triggers the feelings of control and the mental crapola that comes with it.

I’ve seen a therapist for a few years now, dealt with a lot of my anxiety and control issues, but let’s be honest. It’s an ongoing battle. Trying to find a balance between listening to my body, not getting overly controlling, but not letting the food control me either is something I’m still trying to master.


Training and Cooking

25 Jul

I’ve made progress this week on the fruits and vegetable front, but it’s definitely going to be an ongoing battle. I enjoyed going to farmer’s market and getting fresh and super flavorful things. When it comes to snacks, I still gravitate to chocolate or bread over fruit, though. And veggies are just going to take some getting into. I do like the way I feel when I eat healthy, though. I am trying to remember that part. 🙂 Over all, the amount o crap I’m eating is definitely diminishing, so I call that a success!

I’ve been making homemade bread (no sugar, no random stuff, just 4 ingredients – flour, yeast, salt, water) and this week I tried cooking a meal. Man it takes a long time. But it turned out really well!

Chicken Parmigiana and french green beans (sorry for the crappy cell phone pic)

Homemade bread

I’m going to go to the farmer’s market again tomorrow and get some more fruit and veg for the week. I don’t get very much because we’re still learning how to work it into our menu, but I’m enjoying it so far.

So in other news…Today was my first day back with my personal trainer in a lot of months. It was great seeing him again! I think every woman deserves to have an attractive gay man follow her around and tell her how beautiful and strong she is. We took it easy since it’s my first time in a while. Lots of stretches, and lots of core stuff. I’ve been battling back pain for a long time, so my trainer wants to focus on strengthening my core and fixing my posture which helps with that a lot.

I love working with a trainer. Not just because he’s hot and lovable, but also because I’m kind of a form junkie. He’s great at explaining the right form for each move, and how it should feel, and I love it when I can FEEL that it’s right. It’s kind of cool being able to feel your muscles work in the way they’re supposed to. Of course, I say all this now, Thursday morning I’m going to be bitching up a storm. So it goes. Just like eating healthy, it always feels better afterwards than it does before!


22 Jul

I went clothes shopping today. This is something I have abhorred my entire life. My family was not well off, so shopping consisted of finding a few things at K-Mart and putting them on lay-away, and then getting teased about what I was wearing for the rest of the school year. My sense of style was terrible, and my body matured far faster than I did, so all in all, not the greatest set up for becoming an avid shopper.

About a month ago, I decided that at 37 years old, perhaps it was time to stop constantly dressing in programmer wear. Tshirt & jeans can only take you so far. Step 1 was finding a bra that fit (I knew mine was really sized incorrectly but didn’t realize it was THAT wrong) which went a long way towards making me feel better in my own skin.

A friend of mine who is also a bit bigger and loves shopping took myself and my best friend to the mall to show us how to shop for our body style. Turns out I’d been shopping in all the wrong places. The ones where my size was the very top of the range and so I left feeling like crap when everything was too small or they didn’t have my size. She took us to Old Navy and Torrid, and I actually enjoyed it! Shocking.

It was nice to find clothes that fit and I felt cute in. I found out that I actually look good in tank tops. Now if only I could get past my upper arm showing phobia!

So my best friend and I went shopping again today. It wasn’t quite as fun without our guide, but I still felt like I successfully found things that I look good in. I feel like I’m starting to learn how to buy clothing that flatters my shape, which feels really empowering.

The one downer is that today was filled with clothes that just fit WEIRD. Too tight and too loose at the same time, or they hung weird or whatever. It made me desperately want to learn how to make my own clothes. Clothes that fit feel SO much better. And now that I kind of know what types of cuts flatter my shape, I feel a bit more prepared to try making my own stuff. So we’ll see where this leads me. I’m not sure I’ll have time this month, but perhaps that will be next month’s project.

Weigh-In and Ruminations

19 Jul

It’s that time again, and I have lost more weight. I was at 212.4 this morning. Woot! That’s a loss of .8 lbs from last week. I’m pretty dang happy with that almost-a-pound given that this weekend I went to a reunion and a birthday party, AND on top of that, it’s the monthly God-I-hate-being-a-girl slog.

Overall, the not eating after 8p got a lot easier as the week progressed, and now it’s just a thing I do. I can tell it’s not quite a habit yet, but it’s getting there. And it seems super effective given that it and water has managed to offset a pretty impressive amount of crap.

To be fair, I’m also eating smaller portions and healthier foods in general, as drinking more water and not eating after 8p just make me more aware of what I’m putting into my mouth.

After reading most of that blog I linked previously, I’ve been thinking a lot about weight loss, and lifestyle changes. One of the things she said that really resonated with me is that it’s a process of replacing bad habits with good habits. I’d heard this before, but for some reason it really stuck with me this time. That’s part of what the “Skinny Rules” are doing. But there is also no one answer for everyone. So two weeks in, and I’m already planning to make some changes. Because a lifestyle change is about creating a lifestyle *I* want, not something someone else prescribes to me.

So I have been consider what it is that I do want. And it’s fairly simple:
* I want to eat less processed/more natural foods
* I want to eat more vegetables
* I want to eat more fruit
* I want to love exercise

Yep, that’s really all there is to it. I don’t want to restrict my carbs or give up white potatoes or whatever else is in the latest diet. Perhaps I’ll get there on my own, but for now I just want to move in that direction.

So I contacted my personal trainer, and I’m meeting with him on Tuesday. I’m going to continue drinking my water (yum!) and not eating after 8 because those both work well for me, and they feel healthy. And I’m still going to borrow some of Bob’s rules.

I went to the farmer’s market today and picked up some fresh veg and fruit. So my goal for the week is to incorporate more fruit and veg into my diet. We’ll see how that goes!

Inspirational Blog

17 Jul

I spent far too much time tonight reading this blog, but it just encapsulates so well what I’m trying to do with my weight loss. Focus on what I should be eating instead of what I shouldn’t be eating. Eat real. Don’t stress. Exercise more.

So many great things in here, I really recommend it. She lost over 100 lbs and has kept it off for over a year so far.

Now I should really go throw the stuff together for bread so it can rise overnight, and I really need to go to bed!


Birthday and Reunion

16 Jul

This weekend was my 20-year high school reunion and my nephew’s 4th birthday party. Both were a lot of fun, although it’s really quite nice to be home.

It’s interesting, because I tend to shy away from events from people I used to know, and honestly a lot of it is due to my weight. Even though I was heavy in high school, the idea seems to be that if you aren’t skinny, super successful, and have a lot to show for you life, what’s the point in going? Probably if I hadn’t just hit such a huge milestone in my life recently, I would have still shied away. But I decided to go anyway, in part because I received email from one of my closest friends in high school who I completely lost touch with. So I pretty much just went to see her.

There were about 150 people there, and I spent the whole 5 hours there. I predominantly ended up talking to five people, but I truly enjoyed spending time with them. I went alone (wow I’ve come a long way with my social anxiety!) and Lisa was great about hanging out with me, so I was very rarely alone. Her husband was very nice as well, and we had a lovely time. There was not a lot of reminiscing which I was happy about; I really hated high school, so I don’t have that many memories of it.

Eating wise, I actually did fairly well. Being off my schedule messed with things, as did the alcohol (I’m not THAT in control of my social anxiety…a glass of wine was necessary) but I am pretty proud of my choices for the most part.

It was great seeing my brother and his family as well. My niece is 8, and my nephew just turned 4, and they are at the Siblings War ages apparently. Phew. I know they’ll get past it, but I definitely feel for my brother and sister-in-law. They would end up fighting if they spent more than 10 seconds together, and yet seemed incapable of staying apart! It’s hard to beat all the auntie hugs though. Love those guys!

Well, I’m absolutely exhausted from the weekend, and tomorrow is a work day and time to get back on my schedule. So I shall leave you with the photos from the photo booth that Lisa and I took. So much dorky in such a small booth!

Psychological Barriers

13 Jul

Note: I had this scheduled to post on Friday because I knew I was going to be away from my computer all weekend, but it didn’t post. 😦 Anyway, here it is, a few days late:

So first, I just have to point out that I realized “No eating after 8p” was going to be psychologically difficult, but I don’t think I was really prepared.

7:30p – “This is going to be easy. I’m still pleasantly full from dinner.”

It’s like dealing with a 5 year old. Seriously.

So I went and sewed and read and did other things to distract myself and drank water. I know I wasn’t really actually hungry, but man. My mind is a li’l terror sometimes!

Another thing I did was sort the 20 rules into categories for easier choosing next time. I’ve sorted them into things you do once a week, things you do once a day, things you do every meal, and things you’re trying to limit (notice I don’t say never. I’m a realist.)

Once a Week
12. Make one day a week Meatless
*** Plan one splurge MEAL per week

Every Day
5. Eat 30-50 grams of FIBER per day!
6. Eat Apples & Berries Every single day- Yes, EVERY-SINGLE-DAY!
*** Eat a REAL breakfast
*** Make Your own food and eat at least ten meals a week at home
17. Eat Your Vegetables-(no excuses)- Just DO it!
√ Go to bed hungry!
19. Sleep Right

Every Meal
√ Drink a large glass of water BEFORE Every meal-No Excuses!
*** Eat Protien at EVERY Meal -or stay hungry & grouchy!
8. Learn to Read Food Labels so You know what you are eating!
9. Stop Guessing about Portion Size & Get it Right-for good!

*** Don’t Drink Your Calories
4. Slash Your Intake of Refined Flours & Grains
7. NO Carbs after Lunch ( eat ‘lean & green’ at night)
10. No more added sweeteners-including artificial ones!
11. Get rid of White potatoes!
13. Get rid of Fast foods & fried foods
*** Banish High Salt Foods

*** = things I already do.
√ = rules I’ve started integrating.

There are some in there that will be very hard to follow, but overall very beneficial to my health. It encapsulates what I would like to eat like, but there’s quite a ways to go.