Friday, December 29, 2006

I DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

75.2 pounds gone since May 11!!!!

Got my magnet last night to show for it, and I'm so very happy! All my pants are loose. My sweaters are sliding off what used to be my shoulders. I walked 1.28 miles on the treadmill this morning. I increased my weights slightly today (and a couple were TOUGH to take). But I'm so enjoying this change in me.

We had new folks joining our meeting last night. And my leader sent them to me for inspiration and advice, along with a couple of other folks. That was such an honor -- considering I'm about 1/3 of the way to my goal, and yet others see me as an inspiration and role model.

I can't wait to see what the New Year brings!!!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

SOOOO close!

Last weigh-in, I needed 4.4 pounds to hit 75 even. I got 4.2 pounds. AAARGH! 0.2 pounds away.... oh well. I still have a few days to go to get it.

Christmas: I didn't count points. I didn't on Thanksgiving either. Whatever happens, happens.

Enjoy the rest of 2006, and here's to a great '07!!!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Keep dancing, child!!

Yesterday, I got to attend a dance recital for my godchild and her cousin.

I never did dance lessons. I had a friend who did. I thought about it in 2nd grade, but someone mentioned that I should have started a couple of years earlier, and that I needed to drop a few pounds. So I put dance lessons out of my mind. I did Girl Scouts instead, and never thought about dance lessons again. I didn't bemoan the fact that yes, I probably should have dropped a few pounds of baby fat back then and didn't. I didn't wonder if I should have told whomever that they needed to stuff it. In the grand scheme of the cosmos, it was not this sad thing -- it just was. End of story.

Last night at the recital, there was a young lady in two of the segments. She was larger than everyone else up on stage, but OH MY STARS! She was having a grand time. She radiated pure joy. She gave everything she had to her dancing and from what I could tell, was simply happy to be there and happy to dance. And let me tell you -- she was good at it!

A part of me wanted to find her after the show, give her a huge hug and tell her, "You were sensational. I could see that you had a great love and great joy, and I want you to keep dancing your heart out." I hope her parents and loved ones encourage her every single day to keep doing what she's doing -- to not let anything or anyone stand in her way.

She'll probably never see this post, but if you do, and you know a girl who's ... ahem, different ... take the time to encourage her. Take the time to tell her to go for her fondest dreams and wishes. To dance like no one's watching.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Oh well....

I gained back 0.8 pounds. Not enough to really even worry about. Even my leaders tonight were pooh-poohing it. So that's good to know.

I really want to hit 75 pounds by year-end. I have 17 more days to make it happen and lose 4.2 pounds. But if I don't hit it right on the 31st, I'm not going to have a massive meltdown. As Debbie (my leader) often says, "Life happens."

But I'm so happy that I'm well on my way to better health. Nowhere to go but down!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

I'm enjoying these stats!!

3.0 more pounds gone for a total of 71.4 pounds gone in 30 weeks. That's an average of 2.38 pounds per week. I am so psyched and so happy.

I went to a function yesterday, and there were lots of people there that I hadn't seen -- some of them in almost 2 years. They were all astonished and noticed right away that I'd lost weight. I was positively glowing -- not that I'm an attention hound, but I enjoyed the compliments.

And I have worked hard to get where I am. Not working hard is what got me in the shape I was in. Working hard is what's changing my shape and changing my life.

For all those who are on the journey to health with me -- regardless of how you're doing it -- KEEP GOING!!!!!!!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Sorry I'm late!

I maintained this week. I'm actually kind of happy about that. Usually when I lose a large amount (over 5 pounds), I follow that up with a gain the next week. This time, I didn't. So I'm happy about that.

I can also tell a difference in the inches. I went back to my favorite foundations store in Atlanta. I had gone there shortly before joining WW. It had been seven months since I'd gone to the store, and knew I needed to be refitted. Good thing I decided to go. I'd lost enough that I needed all new sizes. Can't complain about that (well, much anyway).

And my clothes are generally looser, including all the new stuff I bought about 2 months ago. Luckily for me, I have found a plus-size consignment shop nearby. I just have to get all my stuff together and take it there!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

How did this happen??

I lost 6 pounds even this week.

I do not know how. It should have been a minimal gain. I didn't hit the gym once this week. I skipped counting points for 2 days.

You will hear no complaints from me. I am grateful and I will take it. That's 68.4 total.

Praise be!!!!

Friday, November 17, 2006

If it keeps getting better,

Whatever will I do? I lost 2.4 this last week!

That's it. That's the list.

Friday, November 10, 2006

It's odd...

A few months back, when I was aiming for 40, there was one week where I was 0.4 short of that goal. The very next week, that's exactly what I lost.

Same thing this time. I needed just one pound even to get to 60 even.... and that's exactly what I've lost.

60 pounds in 26 weeks. Exactly half a year. I can hardly believe it!

Friday, November 03, 2006

Things I've lost this week...

  • Another 3.2 pounds for a total of 59.0!!!! One more pound and two new CD's will be mine!
  • A point from my daily target. On WW, you are assigned a number of points to eat based on your current weight. The more you lose, you will lose points as well. Most of the time, you lose 2 points from one range to another. In the higher ranges, you just lose one ... I guess to acclimate yourself to it. So I have lost a point from my daily total. Right now, that's not going to be so dramatic. I usually -- without meaning to -- have left 1-2 points at the end of the day.
  • A pile of paperwork! My desk was covered over. I got in some weightlifting today moving all those files over to the cabinets! I can't believe how much had piled up.

What a great week -- let's keep on keeping on!

Friday, October 27, 2006

I never liked roller coasters as a kid....

and I especially hate them when I'm trying to lose weight..... gained 1.2 (again). But I also consider that (as my leader said), "Life happens!"

Three birthday parties/dinners, all with free desserts. I tasted little bits of them, but did not eat the whole thing. That was an important change -- a year ago, I would definitely have eaten the whole piece of streusel! And losing 5.8 last week probably made my body put on the brakes.

So how am I going to get through this? I think my "consistency instead of intensity" for exercise has got to be tweaked. I've been working on the consistency, making sure my heart rate is within target, etc. I think I'll go back to what was working for me. And, I can also shake it up so I'm not always just on the treadmill. I like the bike, but I can only go about 15 minutes at a time. So I am thinking that 15 minutes for a "warm-up" then lifting weights, and then another 15 for additional cardio.

And of course, sticking to plan. No more unplanned, guesstimated portions and points. That wasn't good this week. I should have just said no.

Thus endeth the (self-)flogging. I am reminding myself that I've lost 56 pounds. That's more than I really ever expected to lose in 24 weeks!!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

I gotta go visit my friends in Georgia more often...

Because when I do, I lose over 5 pounds!!! This week, it was 5.8 for a total of 57 pounds even (in 23 weeks). That's just short of 2.5 pounds per week.

I am thrilled by the changes in me -- not only the healthy eating habits; not just the exercise (and getting up early to do that!), but the obvious changes too: the smaller sizes (slowly getting smaller, but getting there) and the changes in my appearance.

And I am more confident as well. My self-confidence was in the can a few years back, and over the years, I have worked hard to build it back up. The weight loss is like adding a rocket booster to an overhauled sportscar. What was once a rusted-out tin can is now looking better and better each day. Amazing what a little maintenance does.

To everyone who is sharing this journey with me, I love you and am so grateful for your support and love and concern and your cheerleading. Your support is invaluable!

Monday, October 16, 2006

A minor setback but not a defeat!

Apologies first for not updating until now. I went out of town Friday and just returned.

I had a minor setback last week. I gained 1.2 pounds. But in my defense, my schedule was all thrown crazy -- went in very early (as in 5 AM), and that threw my normal routine all to heck. Meals? Forget it -- my "lunch" break was at 9:00 AM instead of 1:00 PM. Exercise? Only once during the week -- not my usual 3 times. And silly me, I actually ate a full meal before stepping on the scales. Normally, I go straight from work without eating and grab some grub on the way home. Doofus thing to do!

BUT, this is not a defeat. I am determined to lose the weight I regained this week, and to move forward. Oooh Rah!!!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

How sweet it is!

So yesterday, I went shopping with the gift my coworkers gave me and added a little of my own to it. I got enough new pants to last me through the winter -- just in time to buy new ones for spring (at least that's the plan), a suit jacket for one of the pants, a few shirts, and a lot more confidence.

Because I have lost two pants sizes. Okay, really probably closer to 1-3/4. The pants are a little snug, but the size in between was way too loose -- waist, length, everywhere. So a little snug won't be bad, and over the winter, I'll be losing more weight anyway.

What a boost! I had no idea that it was that good. And of course, my shirts are a size smaller than I used to wear too. That part is just as sweet!

This could make me enjoy clothes shopping..... :)

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Patience, grasshopper.....

Today, I had another fitness meeting with my trainer for Wellness Works (through the Y). She and I discussed where I'd come from, where I am going, and what I want to do.

One of the things we discussed was consistency versus intensity. Most people do not realize this about me, because I mask it very well. I am a very intense person. My amps go all the way to 11. Part of that comes from being a large person all my life and always feeling that I had to do things better, faster, more fantastically, because I had more to prove to people: that fatties aren't lazy, etc. So while I look all meek-n-mild and sweetness-n-light on the surface, trust me: the intensity and drive lurk underneath and fuel everything.

So for the last few weeks, I've been doing a treadmill pace of roughly 22 minutes/mile (around 2.8 MPH) -- NOT what I want. I would love an average pace of 17:30 (around 3.5ish). At the same time, I am very cognizant of what my target heart rates are, and am trying to stay within a certain range (between 142-152 bpm). So I've done inclines, sped-up intervals, the whole shebang. Oddly enough, sounding too much like the mother in D.H. Lawrence's The Rocking-Horse Winner: "There must be more results -- there must be more results."

And there is Melissa, telling me that she wants me to slow it down in order to be more consistent. To exercise at a level of 5-7 instead of 8 or 9. WHAT? ME? You must be kidding. And there is Debbie, my WW leader, reminding me that 2 pounds a week should be the most I want to lose in a week.

And here I am, thinking, "Slow it down? Why would I want to? No! I like my pace, I like the results...."

And then there is the internal Shaolin master saying, "Patience, grasshopper."

(insert big heaving sigh here)

Can I learn to slow things down? To enjoy things as they come instead of pushing myself too hard, and possibly setting myself up for failure? To be more focused on what I'm doing and how I'm doing it, instead of worrying about how it's going to turn out?

Thursday, October 05, 2006

More reasons to celebrate!

I'm down another 1.4 pounds this week for a total of 52.4 pounds. I am definitely going to celebrate, because every loss is a step closer to my goal -- and because I wasn't sure if I'd have a loss this week. I figured that with the huge loss from last week, I'd probably bounce back with a gain. And I'm within guidelines, so that's a bonus too.

***

And I have got to share this story with you -- if you haven't heard it already. Monday morning about 9:30, I watched as my coworkers gathered around my desk. I had no idea what was going on....... Finally, one of them spoke up and said, "We are so proud of you, and all the weight loss you've accomplished so far, that we wanted to get you a little something." Inside was $50 in cash -- a dollar per pound so far. And the instructions to buy myself something new that would fit just beautifully -- not to spend on groceries, or on gas, or anything else but something new to wear.

I nearly cried. I was completely overwhelmed by their support and their generosity! We have joked for a while about my "MC Hammer" pants -- baggy all over and u-g-l-y, I truly have no alibi.... And truth be told, I do need to go shopping for something new. Everything I own -- okay, just about everything -- is too big somewhere, either the waist, the knees, the thighs, the arms, the whatever.

I was totally floored. Just completely floored, and incredibly thankful!!!! And this weekend, I am definitely shopping for at least one new pair of pants if nothing else! They're tired of seeing my safety pins -- and quite frankly, so am I! I enjoy needing the safety pins, but even I realize how bad my stuff looks.

So to Beth, Cindy, Elena, Heather, Kelly and Pam, you will always have my heartfelt gratitude for all the love and support!!!!!!! Y'all are terrific!!!

Thursday, September 28, 2006

FIFTY POUND MAGNET, BAYBAYS!!!!

Yes, you heard me!!!!!! I lost 5.6 -- FIVE POINT SIX -- pounds this week. Totally shocking, completely unexpected, and it puts me at 51 pounds gone EVEN.

FIFTY-ONE POUNDS!!!!! I cannot believe it!

I don't recommend losing this much weight in a week (especially this far into it) -- nor do I recommend what I did this weekend to lose that much weight (having so much fun I actually forgot about eating!). This week I'm sticking to plan, and we shall see what happens.

But for now -- I'm loving it!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

WHOA! How'd I do that???

I don't know how I did it but I managed to lose 3.6 pounds this week, for a new grand total of 45.4!!! Okay, actually I know how I did it -- just stayed on track, made sure to exercise properly, and even enjoyed using a point or two from the weekly 35 (something I rarely do). But I never imagined it would be 3.6 pounds this week. I would have been happy with even one or two.

Oddly enough, we talked tonight about keeping the process at a slow simmer instead of a rolling boil. I don't want to drop 10 pounds in a week, but I do want to maintain steady progress. Right now my average is about 2.2 pounds per week, and that works well for me. Anywhere between 1.5 and 2.5 is something I am happy about. I am grateful for the smaller losses too -- I've learned to be happy with the less-than-a-pound losses, because they are steps toward the overall picture.

But WOW! I am very thrilled with this week's loss -- completely unexpected and totally enjoyed!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Keep on keepin' on!

Yahoo! I lost another 1.8 pounds, for a total of 41.8 pounds in 18 weeks of dieting! I am so glad that it turned out to be a very good week. I was remarking to a coworker that I've reached a point where I can't really tell how the week is going to go. Last week felt about the same, and yet I only (yeah, "only") lost 0.4 pounds. Hmm.....

I've also inspired a couple of coworkers to join WW. It's good because we're all going to band together in this. We've been sharing tips and ideas, and now we can do even more. She goes to a different meeting place and day from me, so that works well.

***

I do get asked on occasion why I pay money to go have someone weigh me and to spend 30 minutes in a motivational meeting. One word: accountability.

I know myself well enough to know that if I didn't have someone else watching my progress and watching over me, I would cut myself so much slack that I would not be successful. I am blessed to have a buttload of "accountants" -- my WW leader and group; my coworkers; my family; my Banned Camp sisters. And I am so appreciative of their efforts to keep me on the straight and narrow! And if it takes making my pocketbook gets a little lighter to keep me honest, then so be it. It's called "money well spent."

Friday, September 08, 2006

It wasn't much ....

but 0.4 pounds was all I needed to reach 40 pounds even. And that's exactly what I lost! I am so thrilled and so happy -- and while I would have loved a larger loss, I will take every ounce I get (or in this case, all 6.5 of them!)

So what does this mean? Well first of all, it means I will be getting my happy rear to the nearby music shop and buying Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs and lulling myself to the dulcet tunes of Mr. Clapton et al. It also means I have succeeded to a 2nd goal along the way. I am also within a few pounds of a good percentage of my ultimate goal.

The cool thing about all this is that I'm still eating normal foods. I still eat pizza (albeit Lean Cuisine, but it's pizza). I still eat Chinese (in moderation). I can even indulge in an occasional glass of wine. I still eat chocolate, and chips, and popcorn -- I just watch what kinds I eat and how much. I know what to look for, and what to ask the waiter, and how to prepare foods well.

And today, I was asked by the membership director at the Y to share my story with my fellow Y members as part of a project they're doing. So this weekend I will be typing that up. Because the exercise has been just as essential as the diet portion. I can tell I've lost inches. I've found my bicep again. My clothes fit very loosely. I'm not wheezing when I take a good walk. I can now walk a mile in under 25 minutes -- I'm working my way toward a shorter pace, but am thrilled at what I've accomplished so far!

I tell people who ask, "Believe me. If I can do it, anyone can." And that, my friends, is the key. Making up your mind that you're going to -- and that even a short-term setback is not a roadblock.

If you're walking this journey with me -- whatever program you're on -- my prayers continue for your success!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Not a good day today....

The weekend went better than expected. I went to another work wedding, and this time, allowed myself to enjoy part of the feast. And I still did way better than I thought!

But this morning.... well, I had gotten up early to go to the gym. As I was coming back down in bed, to move toward turning on the lamp on the nightstand, WHAM!!!! I bonked my head on the corner of the nightstand. Hey, you try being an accurate judge of distance at 5:30 AM without your glasses on. No bleeding or other problems, but it has been a sore spot all day. So I figured rather than go to the gym and end up in the hospital -- you know, subdural hematoma or some other thing -- I just thought, "I'll go Wednesday instead."

And I'm gonna need to go tomorrow -- I am out of sync and I really feel it. Holidays are nice, but BOY do they throw your schedule all off, especially when the gym is closed.

Oh well, tomorrow is another day.

Friday, September 01, 2006

So close, so close and yet.....

Another 1.8 down. YAHOOO!!!!! I was just-this-close to hitting 40 even ... 39.6 pounds. My coworker was like, "Round up, girl!" But I can't; that would be cheating. By golly, I will have it by Monday. Yes, I will.

And I'm still going to the gym regularly. I want to try to stretch it to four days a week, so that will include one day on the weekends, probably for just cardio (if nothing else). I figure that's one way to keep things going.

Success is good -- and I'm enjoying what has happened so far! Onward and downward!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

It was 16 weeks ago today...

that I joined Weight Watchers. And to commemorate this milestone, I was given the "perseverance" charm -- a pair of hands in applause with "16" etched on there. I just need a gold chain to put it on.

And I lost another 3 pounds even, for a total of 37.8 lbs. That's a pretty good weight loss, and gets me back on track for "Laboring for 40."

However, let me give you a small caveat: I don't recommend the Migraine Method of weight loss (being just too damn sick to eat). I had a hellacious migraine Sunday evening that stretched on into Monday. I remember waking up starving somewhere around 10:45 Sunday night -- I had been asleep for about 3 hours then. I still had 15 points left over, but I satisfied my hunger with 2 pieces of dry white toast (which was all I really wanted anyway). Oh yeah, and a teensy Weight Watchers candy bar. How warped is that? So I ended up with a 10 point deficit for that day -- really 14 if you take the earned activity points into account. Again, that's not a normal way to do things, and it's definitely not recommended....

As you might guess, I'm beaming from ear to ear. Just 2.2 pounds to go for 40 and for my next CD to add to the collection: Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs. I can't wait!!!!

Oh, and the other good news. I'm now officially over 35 pounds. My clothes should not be altered, because it would cost more and be more labor-intensive to alter them than to buy new ones. Gotta find good cheap pants now!!! I figure why pay good money on pants (like the ones currently in my possession, now unalterable) if I'm going to continue to lose weight (and I am!). So the search begins!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Great Breakfast Smoothie!

Weight Watchers does carry some foodstuffs at the meeting locations and their smoothie mixes are a good buy. It's a little pricey compared to Carnation Instant Breakfast (for example), but very versatile (recipes for other things are included).

So with a little experimentation, here's a recipe that I had earlier today. It's a hearty 5 points, and worth every slurp!

Mixed Berry Smoothie
Serves 1; 5 points

1 cup fat-free (skim) milk
1 WW French Vanilla Smoothie packet
1 cup frozen unsweetened berry mix

Put in blender and blend to desired consistency. I usually hit puree, aerate, then liquefy. You will have a milkshake-consistency smoothie that is delicious -- you get 2 servings of milk (yahoo!) and one fruit (maybe two?). YUMMY!!!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

The downhill run continues!

Another 1.4 pounds lost!!! HOORAY!!!!! It does make "Laboring for 40" a little more interesting to work toward. I need to lose 5.2 in 17 days. I can do it. It just means I work a little extra harder. It can be done! I can do it!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

My secrets

A lot of people -- both in the 3D world and online -- have asked me to share my secrets for the success I have had so far. So here they are, along with a few helpful tips:
  • Bringing snacks to work helps a lot. Usually it's a piece of fresh fruit or a ziploc with baby carrots, a couple of bags of the 100 calorie pack stuff, maybe some hummus to go with the carrots (or Wheat Thins, if I pack those), maybe some yogurt, etc. Those 100-calorie packs are lifesavers. They're a little expensive, so you can use other stuff -- for example, Triscuits. You can have one serving (6 crackers), and it's more than 100 calories, but it's also really filling. I will put 6 in a bag along with some lowfat cheese, and WOO HOO! it's a party! By the way, those are the regular Triscuits -- with the reduced fat
    ones, you can have 7 for a serving. I'll stick with 6 and a little extra flavor!
  • I have breakfast every day. If it's a home breakfast, my favorite is a bowl of Kashi GoLean cereal -- it's a little more money but it's GOOD! And if it will keep me full, it will keep anyone full. It's got 10 grams of fiber and 8 grams of protein (just by itself, without the milk). A cup of that, a cup of skim milk and 1/2 cup of fruit (usually berries or a 1/2 banana) and I'm good to go.
  • I try to use at least 25-30% of my points on breakfast. For the first couple of weeks, I didn't do it, and I wondered why I always seemed to have extra points left over (usually like 4-6). A coworker suggested start eating a heavier breakfast and lunch, and then a light dinner. By golly, she was right. I don't always hit it, but some days I do. If I don't then I can have an even heartier snack.
  • Eat often. I have breakfast no later than 9:30, then around 11:30 or so, I have a snack. I take the late lunch (after 1), then around 4 o'clock another small snack. Then dinner around 7:30, and MAYBE another snack around 9:30. I feel like I am eating all the time, and yet the weight is going away.
  • I am trying to get in the habit of exercising at least 3 times a week and eventually work up to 5 days a week. Exercise is my hardest part. I admit to a great deal of laziness. But I also know that if I don't do something, then it's going to be a harder struggle to get all this weight off. So I've been faithfully going to the Y at least 3 days a week. I am NOT a morning person at all -- but it is the only time I can fit it in. So I'm there before 7:00, and gettin'er done. And no, I'm not the fastest person -- my heavy-duty walk pace is another person's warm-up speed. But I'm working within the proper heart rates, and it's going well.
  • Water, water, water, water and more water. Weight Watchers suggests 6 cups (48 oz) of water a day but I usually go way beyond that. I keep a one liter bottle on my desk. I fill it in the morning and make sure that I drink it all before lunch. I usually have water (or maybe a diet drink) at lunch, and then go back and fill the bottle again and drink it all before going home. Once I'm home I may have one or two more 20 oz bottles of water. So on a normal day, for me, that's 12-13 cups of water.
  • I do love fruits and veggies. I used to hate eating vegetables, but it all depends on how you cook them. My favorite thing is to cut them up, drizzle a little bit of oil (either canola or olive) over them, and put them on the grill. We went to Lowe's and got a non-stick wok. We fill it up with veggies and put them on with whatever we're grilling. MMMMM! I usually use broccoli (fresh, just cut up the head), red onion (but regular onion will do just fine), red & green bell peppers, yellow squash, zucchini and sometimes mushrooms. I just slice everything up and put it in. Stir it up and mmmmm!
  • Not all bread is bad -- most of them time, when I have bread, I pick the whole wheat or multigrain. My favorite is Nature's Own light 100% whole wheat, but even the regular 100% whole wheat is great! I even use that for a bun if I am making a hamburger or chicken patty. I love bread .... I use pitas, tortillas and Flat-Out, which is a long wrap style piece of very flat thin bread. I also love brown rice and whole-wheat pasta. If you can't wrap your taste buds around that idea, try the "not-quite-whole-whole-wheat" pasta -- I know Ronzoni makes it, and maybe a few others.
  • One of the big things is just getting creative in the kitchen. Trying to figure out what will work and what won't. Like the salad wrap -- just came up with that off the top of my head. Learn how to make the proper substitutions. For example, fat-free foods aren't very good for cooking -- great for snacks but horrible in actual cooked or baked dishes. So go with reduced fat. It may add a point, but it will make up for it in taste and consistency. If you have a wild idea, try it.
  • BUT .... the most important thing that I have done is make the decision that I was finally going to put my stubbornness and iron will to work on something good for myself for a change. One of my dearest friends and I were having a discussion one day, and I told her that I didn't seem to have much "willpower" (I love that word, right?). She just fell out. She
    told me that it was total BS -- she'd seen the real me in action; that I usually found a way to get what I wanted, but in a non-threatening, easygoing manner. I realized then that I had lots of willpower -- and I needed to learn to tap into it. It took a few more years (and the
    horrible numbers I read on the scale that day) to galvanize me into action.
Hopefully this will be very helpful to you as well.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Another "I did it!" moment

As I mentioned in the previous post, my "assignment" this week was to eat a favorite food that I'd not eaten since starting the program. I had mentioned lasagna in class, but then by the weekend, I had a craving for the Chinese spareribs.

So Sunday, I sat down with the dining out guide and came up with a plan: a small serving (1/2 to 1 cup) of boneless spare rib pieces (around 6 points), a cup of rice (another 4) and some vegetables (2 points for a cup). Okay, that was manageable. I ate a little less that day for lunch and breakfast, and even skipped my midday snack.

It worked out even better. I am a doofus, and accidentally picked the bone-in ribs -- and two of those were only 4 points. One cup of vegetables was a quarter of what they gave me -- so I upped that to 2 cups (for 4 points), and the rice. All told, the same 12 points. AND I had enough leftovers for lunch on Monday. MMMMM! They were just as good the second day!

So armed with this information, I plan to enjoy some very good foods -- but remembering to eat them wisely.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Rolling steadily downhill...

and loving it! Another 2.4 gone this week for a total of 33.4 pounds gone in 13 weeks.

My God. That's an entire Thanksgiving feast for 20 people -- and I had been carting it around on me. There's plenty more where that came from.

Last night, we discussed our favorite foods -- and what we've stopped eating. So this week, our "assignment" is to eat one of our favorite foods that we've sworn off, but find a way to work it into our points. I mentioned that I love Italian food -- anything loaded with cheese and meat sauce and pasta and.... I'd better shut up while I'm ahead.

But I think I will eat some of my favorite Chinese dish this week: barbecued spareribs. Normally I get the boneless ones -- already chopped up off the bone. And I usually get steamed rice with it anyway. Fried rice is okay, but you get tired of it. They used to have brown rice (which I dearly love) but people in my hometown weren't too impressed by the offering.

So it's how to work it all in. Luckily, I still have enough points to fiddle around with......

Thursday, August 03, 2006

It is official now!

YES! I did it! I lost 3.0 pounds this week for a total of 31.0 -- and since it is similar to what I had weighed at the gym, I'm counting the "30 by the 31st" as a success. Next up: "Laboring for 40" -- 40 by Labor Day. I figure that's 4 weeks for 9 pounds, which is very manageable.

I'd like to say it just gets easier and easier -- and sometimes it does. But there are times I'd run you over for a Godiva bar or (worse) a bunch of breadsticks. Believe me when I say there is an enormous amount of self-control involved here. But that's part of the whole process -- being in better control so that I don't get out of control again!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

It's semi-official, but....

I did achieve "30 by the 31st"!!! I went to the Y this morning, and used their scale -- which showed a 3 pound loss. So that's 3 in 3 days. Nothing is official (at least not in my book) until Thursday, but right now, it's looking pretty good. And I'm counting it!

Tonight, I was doing a little measuring, and am pleased to know that I'm losing inches. I should have done some measuring at the very beginning, but at least I can start now and re-measure another 12 weeks down the pike.

These little things are good encouragement for the long haul.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

What's the saying about pride and a fall?

Okay, it isn't really a fall. I maintained this week. 0.0 pounds. No movement at all.I'm a wee bit disappointed, but not terribly so. On the one hand -- no gain. That is wonderful! But there was also no loss -- so "30 by the 31st" may not happen. I'll have to weigh myself at the gym on Monday to see if this weekend is going to make a difference.

This week, I really put some extra effort to go to the gym 3 days and do my workout. Even with the craziness at work, and every girl's favorite relative making her appearance, I went and worked out. I stepped up the pace on the treadmill. It's still slower than I want it to be, but baby steps. It's been a long time since I've been active and so it's going to take some time to bounce back.

I really tried hard to watch my food intake too. I slipped one day by accident: I left my WW case (with tracking diary) at work. The odd thing was that it was one of my workout days -- when I could have easily traded my earned activity points in for food points anyway (and still have been 3 points under). So I don't think it's that one day.

I also have to consider that I lost nearly 4 pounds last week. My body may be slamming on the brakes and telling me, "Wait! I need to catch up with you!" It's happened before, so I just need to remember to stay on plan, and work my way through this.

***

Another neat thing I've noticed: I've gotten used to not wanting uber-sweet things. I like my 100-calorie-pack items -- the Oreo crisps, the Peanut Butter crisps (mm!), and the Honey Grahams. And fruit -- I love fruit! Even if it's a little tart, I can sprinkle half a pack of Splenda on it and we're good to go. I miss chocolate, but one of the Weight Watchers group has told us of this new bar called CocoaVia. It's one of the darker chocolates with more cocoa in it (so actually a little healthier as well). It's divided into sections and each section is one point. One delectably delicious point. The Weight Watchers chocolate items are divine too -- and they are just the right size. Most of them are 1 point per piece but a serving is 3 items. Holy Moses! I love chocolate, but believe me, just one of these is more than enough.

***

A word about support: I have the best friends, coworkers, family and everyone else. They are behind me 110%. One co-worker even went so far as to tell another one, "Don't even THINK of taking that cookie over there and offering it to Annette. She cannot have it and she doesn't want it." And honestly, I really didn't want it. So it's nice to know that they have my back.

To all the girls at "Banned Camp" -- you are just precious to me! Some of you have seen me before and others I've never met, but you all have stood behind me and loved me through this. I can't thank y'all enough.

To my WW group. I don't know you all personally very well. We see each other for about 45 minutes each week, but I am enjoying this journey with you. And to Debbie, our leader -- I am so glad that you are supportive without being one of the rah-rah perky cheerleader types. (Not that there's anything wrong with that, mind you....). I enjoy your soft-spoken enthusiasm, your realistic expectations of us, and your unfailing support.

And to my family -- who has gotten quite accustomed to hearing me say, "Thanks, I will fix my own meal," has listened to me extol the virtues of portion control and of healthy food, and who in their own ways are walking this with me. Thank you.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

One goal down, another in sight!

I lost 3.8 pounds this week!!!!!! So I reached my 25 pound goal, and exceeded it by 3, for a total of 28 pounds lost in 10 weeks. Next up: "30 by the 31st" -- 2 pounds in 11 days. Yeah, I can do that!

11 weeks ago, I could not imagine where this road would take me. That was my first night, the initial weigh-in when I nearly died from embarrassment, and Debbie (my leader) quietly leaned over and said, "You'll never see that number again." By golly, I don't intend to.

This past week, I tried a new activity: water aerobics. If anyone ever tells you it's not "real" exercise or that it's sissy, beat them to a bloody pulp. It's tougher than hell. An hour of that, and the next morning I could barely get up for work!! But it was so much fun! I am ready to try it again on Monday.

I guess that's it for this week. I promise that by this weekend, I will post that nice long(er) essay I've been talking about for 4 weeks! :)

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Floss and the Fat Girl

TMI Warning! Turn Around Now! You Have Been Warned! Don't Say "Thanks For the Visual -- I'm Warning You Now!"

Too late!

So I went shopping yesterday, looking for new pants. I have about 3 pairs that I can wear without needing to pin them. I have a few others where I am having to safety-pin the waistband to make them fit more snugly. A few more pounds to go, and into the garage sale bag they will go. I read recently that if you've lost more than 35 pounds, forget altering a garment, so.......

I'm a fan of a couple of plus-size stores, but one is my far-and-away favorite. The others get visited when I can't find stuff at my #1 choice. So my #2 choice was visited yesterday. They had a great sale. But no pants that work for me. Most of what they had was casual to begin with -- capris, crops, cargos, leggings. None of them look good on my big ugly legs. My legs don't look any shapelier from the knee down ... just one big continuation.

But they had shirts. And undies. And there, I saw them.

A few years ago, I could have sworn I saw Just My Size make thongs. My first thought was "oh hell no! You will never get my fat rear in a thong, I don't care." Well, things have changed. Especially when they're marked down from $14 to $3. So I bought a pair or two JUST to say I have tried them. All my skinny friends swore by them......

So off I go to the Y this morning, clothes packed and 2 pairs of undies in the gym bag -- the regulation granny-panties (that I adore more than anything) and the floss. Melon-colored mesh floss. Got out of the shower and began dressing .....

12-plus hours later, they are far more comfortable than I ever imagined. I might have to make a stop again and see if they have more. I could get very used to these.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

I love a good downward slide.....

YAHOO! Fifth loss week in a row -- and 2.8 pounds this time. I am only 0.8 pounds from 25 lost. HOLY MOLY!

I promise I still have the longer essay I've been meaning to post but it has been just crazy. I probably should go to bed right now (I got up VERY early this morning to hit the Y before work). But I still have it and will post it soon......

Thursday, July 06, 2006

WAHOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! and HOT DAMN!

I lost another 2.2 pounds this week for a total of 21.4!!!! I have now met my first mini-goal!

To celebrate my little milestones along the way, I decided that I would treat myself to CDs that are woefully absent from my collection. So I will be lulling myself to sleep tonight to the dulcet sounds of "Abbey Road" .......

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Lord, I may faint!

For THREE weeks running, I have lost weight. It was 1.4 pounds, bringing me all the closer to my first goal of 20 pounds gone. I am so excited!

I also joined the Y this week. It's the only way I will be able to work out during the summer -- otherwise, it is just WAY too hot here!

I honestly could not have made it thus far without the support of a lot of people:
* my family, who has learned to just leave me alone and to stay out of my way when I'm in the kitchen (ha ha)
* my coworkers, who are holding me accountable (and I love them for it).
* my BC sisters, several of whom have decided to do the same. Their encouragement has been tremendous!

WE CAN DO IT!!!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Two quick notes

1. I lost again this week!!! First time ever that it's been two losses in a row -- it was only 0.4 lbs but I'm thrilled with it. Just 2.2 more to go to hit 20!

2. I made it through eating at the Chinese buffet today, relatively unscathed. But let me tell you: a cup of stuff doesn't seem like a lot...... So this will be a rare treat.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Soy un perdedor.....

Glad to be a loser again! 3.4 more pounds are gone, gone, gone! I only have 2.6 to go to reach my intermediate goal of 20 pounds. I am very excited about that!

I also spoke to my leader, and she and one of the other employees (who happens to be a nurse) also think that my medications are probably contributing to my "gain weeks" -- not that they are the sole reason but that they probably do play a large part. Okay, that's good to know.

This is getting easier most days. My biggest problem is still finding a way to squeeze in all those points. I also discovered this week that the cashew machine at work usually distributes 1/2 an ounce for my quarter. Only 2 points and mmmmm....... Yeah, one day those points are going to be at a premium, but right now, while I've got them, I'm gonna enjoy them!

***

I'm enjoying my new walking routine, but I know that I'm going to need a little more change-up sooner or later. And as it gets hotter and hotter this summer, I'd love the opportunity to exercise indoors.

One of the local gyms -- one where I used to be a member -- is running a deal for $29 a month. But that's for a locked-in 2 year commitment. When I was a member there, I rarely went during the last year of my 2-year contract, and it was a buttload of money down the drain (it still came out of my account monthly). You can get a one-year, but their incentive is that it's $39 a month to do that. Well, the way I see it, $120 extra a year is better than wasting $360 on a year I may not use.

And I'd love to join the Y but the prices shown online are still higher than this other gym. Sure there's the pool, but who wants to get into an outdoor pool at 6:00 AM? Maybe in July or August, but mornings are still nice and mild right now.

So what is a gal to do? I'd love to find one in between work and home that would do a monthly basis -- no contracts, just pay by the month. Those are hard to find, because let's face it, the owners want some guarantee and need some budget within which to work. BUT... are they in it for the money or for helping people reach their potential?

Decisions, decisions.....

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Fighting the lazies...

I am trying really hard to fight the lazies. So far this week, we're at a draw.

I did some walking this weekend, albeit at a rather leisurely pace. I hauled quite a few grocery bags, so that counts for weightlifting, right? No, I didn't think so either..... But tonight, I hoofed it, and hoofed it hard for about 20 minutes. It was so worth it -- two or three small hills so that it was challenging, but not undoable. Four square blocks, and it was great! And ready again for tomorrow night's challenge......

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The wages of laziness...

1.4 pounds. In the wrong direction. BUT my leader shared something that I thought was very good. In the 4 weeks I have been on, I have lost 14.0 pounds -- an average of 3.5 a week. Most people average 1.5 a week.

So this week, more exercise (I'm sorry, but "activity" just sounds so phony when I *know* what I'm doing) and better planning.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Lazy week.

Yes, I've been lazy about "activity" this week. I've walked a couple of times but that's it. Done a few crunches, but that's it.

But such is life. And tomorrow is another day.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Cuz I'm ba-a-a-ack, ba-a-a-ack....

....back in black (so to speak).

It was a good week. I lost 3.8 pounds, so my total (in 3 weeks) is 15.4 pounds. I promise you, I never expected this much. I was thinking 10 pounds in 3 weeks or even 10 pounds in a month. But not this much this soon. It's a good feeling though!

One of my coworkers hit upon a good point, and I've been following it the last few days. She reminded me that I was probably not eating enough at breakfast -- and she was right. I have all these points (right now) that I can eat, and I'm not eating them at the right times. So I'm trying to use at least 25-30% of them for breakfast. So far, so good.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Well, crud...

I actually gained back half a pound (0.6 to be precise). At first I was crushed -- HOW? I had been so very careful all week. Well, one, I figure it's "Bloat Week" so that has to come into account. Two, as my leader said, my body was probably reacting to the huge loss from last week. Almost like it thought I had gone into starvation mode and put on the brakes. That makes sense.

She also said that I *have* to eat all my points. For instance, I still have 3 left tonight. So I figure that's worth a glass of milk and a few grapes. So her suggestion is to add one point to each meal. If I go over, whoop. I have 35 weekly points that I've never touched yet.

So it's time for a Ziggy .... pick myself up, dust myself off, and start over again. Back on the program without being in starvation mode, and more "activity"!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Survived my first big temptation!

A coworker of mine got married this weekend. The scary part of being on a ... food plan ... is dealing with things when you don't know the points value, or any of the nutritional information in order to find the points.

I knew the value of one item. But no idea of the serving size offered by the serving spoon. Now I had plenty of points left for the afternoon/evening, but I really wanted to do everything just right. So I was a good girl and skipped the barbeque, the baked beans, and the coleslaw. In fact, skipped everything right on to the grocery store. I could have had those 8 points just for the barbeque, and God knows how much for the other, and dipped into those 35 "splurge" points each week. But I didn't.

And I am so proud of myself for doing so! Two more days until the weigh-in. I know it won't be 12 pounds again -- but believe me, I will be happy with 2-3 pounds!

Thursday, May 18, 2006

OH MY GOD!!!!!!

Holy Crap!!!!!

I lost 12.2 pounds this week.

First off, that made me wonder what in Hades was going on with me last week -- with my body, or with the scale. But they have said that all the scales are calibrated each week. So.......

I honestly believe that some of last week's weight was the weight of defeat -- that sense of "I have no other choice." Timidity. Perhaps even a little depression. Literally weighing me down. This week, confidence, excitement -- and healthy choices -- have definitely lightened my load.

12.2 -- can it be real? I've gone back and checked several times to be sure. 12.2 ... 12.2. I have lost a small Thanksgiving turkey -- enough ground beef for 2-3 pots of chili -- a 6-month-old child. But what I have gained cannot be measured.

I am amazed. Proud. Humbled. Shocked. Thrilled beyond belief. Cautious, because I know this was a rare week. But glad.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Learning to fly...

"Everything good for you is either illegal, immoral, or fattening."
"Nothing tastes as good as being thin feels."


I've never had trouble with the first quote -- I know it to be all too true. Today, as I was pondering lunch choices, I discovered this again for myself. Tabulating points for foods that I usually love -- well, disheartening isn't quite the word. Dumbfounded is more like it.

The second quote is one I've personally hated over the years. One, the last time I was "thin" was probably elementary school. Darren H. had already bestowed the nickname of "Fatty" on me by 2nd grade -- although by 3rd grade, it had become a weird term of endearment among friends. Even as a large person, I know how good things can taste. Believe me, if being thin feels better than Godiva tastes, well I'll be positively over the moon, won't I?

I'm trying to learn to eat even more slowly. If I'm out with friends, I'm usually one of the last to finish -- usually because I'm talking too much. But solo, as I am at lunch sometimes, I have a tendency to eat far faster, not really savoring the food as much as shoving it in as fuel.

So today at lunch, solo, I decided to go as slowly as possible in a one-hour time frame. I went to Macaroni Grill and got the Pollo Magro ("Skinny Chicken"). At first read, I wasn't sure I really wanted it. But it was the least damaging, points-wise (only 5). But OOOOOOH my my! Was it far better than I expected! One grilled chicken breast with a balsamic glaze, side of steamed spinach, and topped with tomato, onion, and fat-free feta. Well, the plum tomatoes came out whole, not grilled, and quite honestly, I'm not that big a tomato fan anyway. But everything else was completely fantastic.

Then the bread. Bread has always been a bugaboo for me. I love bread, which is why Atkins and South Beach are not the diets for me. White, wheat, rye, pumpernickel, raisin, garlic, whatever -- I love it. And naturally, you are given a loaf of "peasant bread" at the table. Each loaf has ten points, so one-quarter loaf is 2.5 points. Don't think for even a second I couldn't snarf the whole thing down in a flash. I love their focaccia. But I was good. I only had that quarter-loaf -- 2.5 delicious points. Furthermore I am amazed at how good that little sliver was .... mmmmm!!!!

All in all, it's getting easier to make good eating decisions.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Activity, activity, activity.

So we are supposed to banish the D and E words and replace them with ?? and Activity. I choose "Fuel" for the four-letter D word.

When they mentioned this at the meeting, I thought to myself, "Call it whatever you want, it's still (the E word)." Cynical little chit, aren't I? But the leader also asked us to give her just 5 minutes a day to start. I thought, "Okay, that I can do."

So that is what I am doing ... 5-10 minutes a day right now. Next week, 15 minutes a day. The next week, 5 more minutes. And eventually, work my way up to 30 minutes a day (which I'll have to do as 15 in the morning and 15 at night).

This is working well. I'm amazed. I just want it to continue to work well!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

The first weekend...

This was my first weekend with Weight Watchers, and I am proud to say that so far, I have done very well. In fact, the biggest problem I have encountered is eating all my points.

No joke! I'm at a pretty high points level, and I swear, I can't imagine eating that much food. Correction: that much healthy food. I could easily do it with crud and have for years, which is why I'm doing this today.

So far, my saving graces have been stir-fried veggies and salads. I made a great stir-fry veggie dish tonight to go with our meal (grilled stuff, mine was a salmon kabob). I took half a large red onion, one green bell pepper, one zucchini, and one broccoli crown -- and chopped everything up into medium sized pieces. Add a tablespoon of safflower oil and all the veggies and stir-fry in a wok. MMM MMM! It was delicious, and everyone loved it!

And oddly enough, even after a healthy breakfast, a hearty lunch, a delicious dinner, and THREE snacks today, I still have bookoo points left over. I gotta figure out a way to fix this!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Why I did it.

Why did I join Weight Watchers? Specifically, what was it about Thursday, May 11 that caused me to do it?

Nothing. It was just the cosmic tumblers clicking together, the universe coming to a focus point, and a "lightbulb moment" that made me not drive past it but stop in. Just a little voice that said, "Now is right." No overtures, no orchestra, or trumpet blasts. Just "now" ..... only this, and nothing more.

I have dieted since 9 years old. It was the hamburger patty/citrus diet. My mother packed my lunch each day for a week with a hamburger patty (or chicken patty) for lunch, and all the citrus fruits I could want. It was a horrid, miserable diet (where she found it, I have no idea). And I have spoken the language of diet as well as anyone. It's been an undercurrent of my language since childhood. My mother was/is always on a diet. My brother is/was usually on a diet. My dad was the only one who seemingly never had to diet (but probably needs to, now).

So how did I get to where I was? I have no clue.

Where do I hope to go? I have no idea. I have no "ultimate goal" yet. I have a faint inkling of where I'd like it to end. But right now, I just want to concentrate on goal 1: 20 pounds. That's all.

Scared? Petrified. Confident? Naturally. Oxymorons? Perhaps...... but I am a jumble of emotions, but the good ones are winning out.

Lots of wonderful encouraging comments from my Queenly buddies are helping me along the way. I can do this. I am a Carolina girl, from stubborn stock and hardy people. I am no shrinking violet. I am no wallflower. I am up to the task.

OOH RAH!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Petrified but proud.....

I bought a gift for myself tonight. If things go as they are supposed to with this gift, I will have given myself a longer, happier life. Seeing as how I'm 36, I'd love to get 64 more years on the deal.

I joined Weight Watchers.

I'm proud of myself. It takes an awful lot for me to ever admit that I need help with something. I'm one of those classic independent, stubborn people -- pulling myself up by my own bootstraps (so to speak) is something I pride myself on. For me to walk in that door, fill out the paperwork and -- the real horror -- stepping on that scale ..... well, it took ovaries, and I'm glad I had enough of them to do it.

Strangely enough, I am also absolutely scared crapless. I am scared of failing. I want so much for this to succeed. I really do. There wouldn't be many other alternatives except The Surgery -- and while some people have had great success with it, I would be the 1 out of the 200 who'd die. I know it. Can't prove it, but I know it.

I can't believe how excited and frightened, optimistic and scared I am. All this jumble of emotions.......