Changes: Day 24

It is hard for me to believe that I am already into my fourth week of this lifestyle challenge /change, something that I can honestly say I would typically have started to half-ass by now. Not really trying, mainly because I would be discouraged with the lack of changes in my body. Failing to realize that the firsthand most important change that has to occur takes place in the mind.

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Here I am, closing in on the end of one month, and I have to admit that it is getting easier. Because of the fight that I am putting into this time (I really don’t want to be this fat, yes, but moreover, unhealthy, anymore), adjusting what I eat, how I eat, and why I eat, and getting back into a cardio mind, I have begun to notice some changes, most of them are small, and seemingly insignificant topmost people, but to me? These changes are mountains that I have been climbing.

The biggest change in me is my energy. It has been almost a year since I have been able to walk at the rates that I have been pushing myself to over the past few weeks, and it feels exhausting!! Seriously, finally pushing myself to a 15 minute mile after so long is kicking my butt, and I take a while for my body to cool, and my heart rate to slow, but I feel good about what I have done. I do vary my treadmill speeds and add the occasional baby incline (I’m not a masochist!) to keep my body guessing.

The other change (I’ve been told by family) is a physical change, a narrowing of my face, and a tightening up pf my legs. These changes I don’t see. Yet. But I know they are coming. I have to take these words with a grain of salt because they come from my family, and they don’t want to see me fail myself again. I know that they say it takes 4 weeks to you to notice a change. It takes 8 weeks for friends to notice it. It takes 12 weeks for everyone else to notice it.

Day 24 and I am down 12 pounds so far, about 6 pounds from reaching my first milestone goal. Am I going to keep at it? Yes. Why? Because I am ready to do it this time.

The Struggle Is Real: Day 17

Here I am, day 17 of my lifestyle change, and, okay, it is getting easier in some areas, while in others? well, as I said, the struggle is real. The question I find myself asking is whether or not it is worth it? and Is it sustainable?

Is it worth it? The calorie monitoring? The trying of new foods that i have always found disgusting? The getting up, despite the temperatures outside, and despite how tired and unmotivated I am? I really wish I could say “No!” to all those questions, but the truth of the matter is, at least for right now, the answer is yes. In the two full weeks that I have been on this current course, I have only allowed myself on rest day from the black belted beauty (thanks, Carrie B!). I have found myself able to push myself up to a 15 minute mile while walking, which is a far cry better than the 2.5 mph I started out on a mere two weeks ago. I have also been able to keep myself walking for an hour at a time – again, doubling my time from New Years Day. I know that to some people, these steps are minor and less than note worthy. However, when you are edging closer to 50 and classify as obese, if not morbidly so, these are huge feats. Along with the positive change in my energy, I have managed to continue losing pieces of myself, and as of this morning, I am lighter by 8.8 pounds thus far. Again, not a big deal, but I bet my doctor would disagree with you, and I know I do.

It is hard to get up and go take that walk to nowhere every day? Yes, I admit it sucks, but with the cold winter mornings that we’ve been having, not to mention the killer flu epidemic, inside is better than outside right now. So I will keep taking the walk to nowhere every day that I can because it is getting easier, and it is nice to have the energy to do so.

They (and just who is this “they,” anyhow?!?) say it takes between fourteen and 21 days to make a habit, and I know that I am closing in on that milestone! They *rolls eyes* also state that it takes four weeks to begin to notice a change in yourself, and eight to twelve weeks for others to begin to notice the changes in you. Every day is a step closer to someone seeing that I am busting my ass every day trying to get healthy. Meanwhile, I will continue to be aware of what I put in my mouth, and of the steps I take to eliminate the negatives.

My goals remain the same:  1) Reach my first milestone weight of 246 pounds. 2) Add weights to my workout routine. 3) Not be the “fat mom” at my sons college graduation in May. 4) Lose a total minimum of 75 pounds up to one-hundred pounds. I will keep using my support of family and the internet group of women who are members of my Noom team.

I hope next week I will have conquered the ten pound point *fingers crossed*!

 

Life’s Hard Lessons

There’s an old saying of “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade.” This is a great saying, but over the past 5 years, I have made so many pitches, gallons, and 50 gallon barrels of the stuff with every start and stop along the weight loss trek, that I have probably lost count. I think the worst part is that I have put it here on the world wide web for anyone to see my failures. I keep reaching, thinking that this time it’ll be different. But it’s not. It has yet to be. I think I may have finally figured out the (my) problem. It has all been in my mind set.

I keep going into every year like a cliff diver in competition in Mexico, ready to plunge head first into the depths without thinking about the consequences. I would go full tilt for the first three or so months and hit a plateau, or burn myself out, or hurt myself. The end result would always be the same: I’d quit. I would look at the progress that I had made and kiss it goodbye, inevitably reversing my progress and adding more to where I started.

I thought I was at my lowest point last year when I last took the dive, weighing in at 247 pounds (see my post here). I was wrong. Too much stress eating. Too much mindless, fog eating while at work or at hope. Couple that with no exercise and we have where I am today, I think that, for right now, I am going to keep the numbers to myself. Cowardly? Yes.

I am stepping into 2018 with a different way of thinking about this. I am not going to say that I am on a diet because that way of thinking has crapped out on me too many times. Instead, I am going in to 2018 making a lifestyle change. The four letter word does nothing for me other than making me angry…

What do I mean by a lifestyle change? I am going to focus on altering my eating habits, logging in everything I eat, and keeping my daily calorie count under 1600. I am going to focus on drinking more water, and stepping away from the sweet tea at the golden arches. I am going to start getting more active, slow and steady, building up as my body lets me.

What are my motivations this time? Why am I trying again? There are a few reasons. The first is I am tired of being tired all the time. Knowing I am unhealthy but not doing anything to change it is stupid. I am tired of being an embarrassment to my children (my feelings -they’ve never said anything to me about being embarrassed). Third is my son graduates college in May of this year with a degree in kinesiology, and I don’t want to be the fat mom there. I have a feeling there are so many more reasons on the horizon, I just do not want to wait any more.

How am I going to accomplish this? Wait, just how much is ‘this” that I am talking about? Let me answer the second question first. Overall, I want to lose 100 pounds, yes, I know it’s a lot. That is how much of the too much of me there is. Now, for the how? I have signed up for a weight loss app called Noom to help me get through this change. Add to that eating better, more water, and more exercise. And small goal chunks. My first goal chunk is to drop to 246.4, and I know this is doable. I am going to make an effort to hit the gym daily for at least an hour of cardio to rebuild some muscle, and start erasing some of the fat that I have accumulated.

My goal here is to try and document every other day, if not daily, how its going, how I am feeling, what are my struggles and accomplishments. I would say fingers crossed, but it’s not up to luck or chance this time. It’s up to ME.

No Photographs, Please!

Wow. There’s nothing like a new low. I live with it every day, facing it and actively ignoring it. that is until a pivotal moment that gobsmacked me. Going about my day-to-day existence knowing in the back of my head what’s coming. Today was that clarifying, or re-clarifying, moment.

I spent a week sitting on my butt in a hotel learning about writing, what I need to do to create the best manuscript I can, how to query and pitch it, and to never stop learning. Meeting some truly fabulous people in the industry from publishers, agents, editors, authors, and cover models. And I was going to set about snapping my picture throughout the events. That was until I looked at myself in the pictures.

I’m back to being the woman I once was, insecure, unhappy, and way too heavy. Time to figure out a new way to fix and find myself. I have absolutely no idea what the current number on the scale says; don’t really care right now, to be honest. It’s too much, by a lot… 70 pounds minimum, could even be close to topping out at 100 pounds of too damn much.

Eff me. How, or rather why do I do this to myself? I’m an embarrassment to myself, and I wouldn’t be surprised if my kids were not embarrassed by me as well. What a way to represent.

So, I need to drop as much weight as humanly possible before next Memorial Day, in time for my daughters graduation. Here I go again…

It’s like Fonzie jumping the sharks…

I did it. I bit the bullet, and only because I have a new scale in my bathroom.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been practicing getting on it bravely -fiercely- but I would make certain to get on it without my contacts in, thus preventing me from seeing the illuminated numbers. I have been circling around the scale, like a shark circles its prey, only, not really because I knew that once I finally took that step, one molecule at a time until I was standing fully on it, there would be no turning back from the reality of what I have allowed to happen.

 

So there I was this morning, walking innocently into the bathroom, happy because it’s the weekend, and I have accomplished a lot toward my writing goal this week. I’m smiling, I’m singing to myself; there are virtual blue birds flitting around me in my mind, for crying out loud! I’m not paying attention to what I am doing when I pop in my contacts and turn to my right, and then I see it. The it I have been able to ignore, overlook, not see no matter how hard I squinted…

 

Now I have no more excuses to delay the inevitable. My mind starts reeling with possible excuses but there is no valid reason to not take this step. There I am, staring at it; oh, it looks all sweet and loving until you step foot on it and then LIES! or what I wish were lies.

 

Okay, I’m telling myself, if it hurts, it’ll only be for a minute. You know the truth will be hideous. You’ve only yourself to blame for this, so suck it up, Buttercup. It is time to face the music. No more delusions. Reality, and a full dose of it, is due. We’ve had a lot of things thrust at us over the past several months, and we coped the only way we knew, but that time is over. There are better ways to cope than shoving comfort food in your mouth, and you’re taking those steps. It’s time.

 

Yes, I had to give myself a pep talk slash guilt trip, but I did it. I eased up on the sleeping beast, tapped its corner to wake it up, took a deep breath, sucked in my stomach (don’t judge me) and climbed on. The numbers blinked and flashed like the national debt billboard until they finally stopped at 237.1

 

It was /is bad, but I did not fall apart. I fell apart in February and May, and too many times in the months between to count. The reality is I can handle this, and I can take steps to fix it. I’ve had the worst and this is nowhere even remotely close. The amazing thing is, even though it did ding my self esteem and body image, making it a little worse than it already was, I am okay. I’m still wearing dresses, or skirts and cute tops to work, I’m fixing my hair, and I am wearing makeup. I did not self destruct.

 

Women mostly, and men, have a preconceived idea of what we are “supposed to” look like, thanks to film and print media. But the world is made up of such diversity, so many colors, shapes, textures, and even sizes. We (and I am mainly talking to myself here) have got to remember and accept that we are not all the same, and I am learning to love myself as I am.