Why?: Day 64

Why? A small word that can have so many answers. Kids ask “Why?” all the time, and we patiently answer their queries. When adults ask the “Why?” question, we tend to want to look for a deeper answer, a more fulfilling one than a cursory gloss over can fill. When I look back over the peaks and valleys of the past 64 days, I think back over my mental hurdles, the multitude of “Why?” question that I would serve up to myself on a weekly, daily, sometimes even hourly, basis. I would lose heart. I would lose motivation. I would, essentially, lose purpose.

Yesterday was a very difficult day for me. My son has challenged me to go carb free for one week (which he has now stretched into two), and yesterday was my third day of no carbs… It hurt. I was aware of the pain -not a physical pain, but a mental one. A desire so strong to break, to eat the carbs that my mind was craving. I can see that now, in the morning after. My body didn’t really want or need the carbs, or the sweet, but my mind convinced me it did. My best friend (who is also on a lifestyle change) and I even went so far as to go to the grocery store last night in search of a carb free treat that would appease our minds. We bought supplies needed to make a keto candy, but we stopped there. All of the ingredients are still in my kitchen, unopened. When we got back here last night, we remembered that we are stronger than the craving. So we were.

 

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This morning I woke feeling stronger, mentally, for not caving into temptation, and I have gone so far as to call work and asked my co-worker to hide the candy jar before I get to work tonight. Out of sight, out of mind. I have to remember that food, in any form, is not the answer. Not the solution to my problems. I need to stop when I think I am hungry and think about why I am hungry. Am I stressed? Bored? Tired? I need to come up with solutions to the hunger beyond eating.

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But this morning also marked a large milestone for me; 64 days and, I can finally say 20 pounds. I’m still not at a 10% loss, but I am getting there, and once I do, I’ll have new goals to set.

One thing I have to remember as I continue on this journey is that my value is not dependent on how much, or how little, I weigh. I am still working on this lesson, referring back to a post I wrote a couple of years ago, that actually popped up on my memories this morning. You can read that post here.

I need to remember that life is intended to be a marathon, not a sprint, and any change worth making -and keeping- develops over time.

 

M-O-T-I-V-A-T-I-O-N: day 50

I did not realize I had gone so long without writing anything, but I guess it goes hand in hand with my title today. Motivation, and mine had waned. The want, the desire to be healthy was still there, beating inside me like a living thing, but my mind, the control center, had become bored. Of everything. I was tired of having the same meal for lunch at work, my salad and baked potato were so meh when everyone else at work was feasting on pizza, or bar-b-que, or, God help me, Taco Tuesday. The heavens aromas wafting through the office made my healthy lunch pale in comparison. And the walking. The eternal walking, walking, walking to nowhere were leeching the remaining spirit from my soul. What was the point of walking if there is no destination?!

It took me a good ten days of floundering around, wallowing in myself, to remember that there is, in fact, a destination, and that destination is a healthier version (and if I happen to be more lean and toned? Bonus!) of myself. And my immediate goal destination is May 18, 2018: my son’s graduation from college. To not be a disappointment to my kids when they look at me, all too much of me, huffing and puffing to keep up with them, and to make them, and myself, proud.

After a mental slap, and a discussion with both the motivation and the desire to succeed, I am back at full throttle. I may still walk to nowhere for now, but I can enjoy the time getting lost in an audio book. I can try and enjoy flavors on those healthier food choices. And, if my food budget allows and I have taken my walk to nowhere, I can enjoy a bit of Taco Tuesday without beating myself up, or giving up.

T minus 89 days and counting down. It’s doable, one step, one meal, one day at a time.

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.