Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Better chance of making out with George Clooney than having a flat belly

You know how when you're watching a movie with a delicious thing you start to imagine that it's you on that screen kissing them?  And the next thing you know you're picturing yourself on the red carpet with them hardly able to believe that the gorgeous creature on your arm is madly in love with you.  For me that's where it takes a nasty turn. Being fat even ruined my fantasies.

Here's how it goes:

I'm out to dinner with friends when I look over and there sits (Insert: Bradley Cooper, George Clooney, Keith Urban, Jake Owen, etc).  I had heard he was in town to promote his (Insert: new movie, new cd).  Our eyes meet and I start to blush all over.  The waiter comes over and tells me that (Bradley, George, Keith, Jake) would like to buy my dinner and hands me a note.  He's asking me to meet him after dinner.

Fast forward a week and we've spent a week traveling around the country together holding hands and canoodling. I've been on his arm  for every event and every woman there is envious and jealous.    We stand there gazing lovingly into each others eyes.  My belly is all a flutter. Could this really be happening?

And speaking of bellies...that's when it happens.  The picture in the tabloids says "Who is the fat girl with (Bradley, George, Keith, Jake)?"

Yep, that's all it takes.  The dreaded F-word.  Even in my fantasies I am fat.  Seriously, I can picture myself with (Bradley, George, Keith, Jake), but I can't picture a flat belly?  What is wrong with me?  But that's how it is.  That Fat Devil me on my shoulder is at it again. I have a better chance of hooking up with a movie star/singer than losing the weight.

I hate that Fat Devil.  Even with most of the weight gone I still can't enjoy the good fantasy with an A-List guy...I have to settle for a C-Lister because I am so terrified of being called the dreaded F-word.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Planning Ahead

Hello Beautiful People!

Tonight I walked 5 miles in the park after work.  I love these walks for many reasons. But, tonight the main reason is because it gave me time to think about tonight's post.  I had a nice hour and a fifteen minutes to think about the topic.  And that topic is Planning Ahead.

Want to lose the weight?  Well you need to make changes.  LOTS of changes.  The reality is that you got where you are because of bad choices and and bad priorities. It's a tough pill to swallow, but it's true. I think back at the things I did and didn't do for so many years and I want so scream at my old self. I love that I used to get on my grand parent's exercise bike for 10 minutes and expect that I would miraculously get off it skinny.  Nevermind the 3 donuts I ate right before I got on it.  Once again, I was stupid.

If you are serious about this journey you need to plan ahead.  Plan out your week.  Start with your meals.  Do you have any plans to go out to eat?  Work around that.  What plans do you have at night?  Can you find an hour for a workout?

Let me explain that I have OCD.  I am a planner.  It's a gift and a curse.  haha (for those of you who watched Monk :-) I like to plan my week out so that I am not spending several days in a row not working out or facing the temptations.  After this past weekend's bad choices I knew I really needed to buckle down this week and be strict.  That means packing my lunch and scheduling my workouts.

My walks at lunch have been on hold for a about 6 weeks.  First I was sick and injured and then the mall was overrun with teenagers and I just couldn't take it.  Thank goodness it's time for school again.  So knowing that I wasn't walking at lunch I had to make sure that I was getting in walking after work.

On Monday at work we got to talking about Reubens.  Oh delicious Reubens.  So we decided to schedule a lunch and go get one this week.  Well that's my splurge.  There is no question that I have to pack my lunch the other days.  Except that we had a new girl start this week too and now we're taking her to lunch on Friday to get to know her.  I believe the location will be my biggest weekness: Mexican.  Ok, so now I'm starting to slightly panic.  A reuben AND chips n salsa on back to back days?  I can do this. I know I can! I just have to make sure that the other meals are good and healthy. And I can order my taco salad Naked (sans tortilla shell....not as fun, but I will not hate myself after).

So I've got the eating planned out, but what about the working out?  I walked Monday night.  Tuesday night I wanted to walk, but the new cd I wanted came out and I needed a few groceries.  So instead of walking I hit the weights and abs for 45 minutes when I got home.  Tonight I was possibly going to a movie preview and tomorrow I was going to see one of my favorite country singers at a local bar.  Both of these would be fun, but I also knew that I had plans for my lunch hours and would not be getting in my workouts for two days in a row.  I must look like a deer in headlights when I figure this out.  Sadly, but luckily both plans canceled and now I am able to plan my workouts.  Friday is out because of the lunch out and then driving to the beach for Labor Day weekend.  But can I get a holla that I am going down Friday night so that I can hit the gym first thing in the morning before the beach? :-)

I'm not saying you need to plan every moment around your workouts and food, but you do need to make the sacrifices if you want to see the changes. Instead of going to happy hour go to the gym.  Instead of sitting around watching the newest reality show get a step and use it during the whole show.  Plan your meals.  When I get home the very first thing I do is pack my lunch for the next day.  If I let it go too long I will probably end up skipping and saying that I will just go pick something up.

It takes discipline.  But, if you want it bad enough you will find a way.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Get out there and walk

Today someone asked me if I had any tricks to my journey.  The first thing that came to mind was Walking.  I could walk all day if you let me.  Seriously, could there be anything easier?  Not really.  You have to do it all day long.  It's not like you have to condition your body to it or anything.  Just get out there and walk.

I sit at my desk all day and work on the laptop.  Luckily, my office is one mile from a huge mall.  So every day I head over there at lunch with my sneakers, ipod, and my water.  I walk six laps which is approximately 3 miles and come back to my desk for the rest of the afternoon.  I have had days where I was so wrapped up in work that I didn't even get up to use the bathroom until lunchtime.  That's insane. They do not pay me enough for that.  But, that's why my lunch-time walks are so important.  Imagine if I didn't do that?  I would barely move all day and you know I would be so mentally exhausted when I get home that I wouldn't do a thing. Instead not only have I gotten up and exercised at lunch but I've also given myself that mental break to get through the afternoon.  It's such a great stress reliever.

I wish I could run, but my knees will not allow it.  And so I walk. I feel like Forrest Gump sometimes.  haha.  I would walk across country if you let me.  I've tried to talk people into walking so many times and often I get the same resistance: It's boring.  Are you kidding me?  It's my favorite part of the day.  I just slap that ipod, with the fast-paced playlist, on and let my mind relax.

So if you are looking for something to get you started go walk:
*Grab the kids and walk 30 minutes around the neighborhood after dinner. 
*Walk with another mom around the park while the kids have soccer practice. 
*If it's raining head to the mall and do laps there.
*Get a group together and go walk around the outside of your office at lunch.
*Head over to the local high school track a couple nights a week they may have the lights on.

Once you get used to the walking, push yourself.  Add an extra lap or try to beat your last lap time. Don't let it get stale.  Don't get into the same habits because your body will adjust to them. 

My body has changed completely since I started walking so much.  I have always had muscular legs.  I am very proud of that. But, now they are getting thin too!  :-)  Sometimes I catch myself looking at them in total amazement thinking someone else's legs are on my body.

I have had many days where I walked 3 miles at lunch and then 5 more miles after work in the park.  I have always been curious about just how long I could go.  I tested it out one day and got to 10 miles.  I truly believe I could have done more, but I ran out of water.  That just amazes me. If I ever beat that I will be sure to let you know.  And I hope I can do that soon. :-)

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Maybe it's a tumor

 And now the truly embarrassing moments begin.

You've seen the shows on Discovery or TLC about the people who have the giant thirty pound tumor removed that they never new about.  Well so have I.  And they are DANGEROUS shows let me tell you.  I can't even believe I'm confessing to this, but here it goes.

Back in the day I watched one of those shows and became obsessed with the idea that maybe I had one of those too.  I would lay down and feel all over my belly hoping to find something.  I know that is sick.  And I truly apologize to anyone who has actually had a tumor.  But this is what being fat reduces you too.  You would rather find out that you are sick and go through a painful surgery for a quick fix than actually face yourself and make the changes.

I was so stupid. 

Do you remember the cartoons that would have the angel-self sitting on one shoulder and the devil-self on the other? Well I feel like I had two devils on my shoulders.  The thin devil making me think this was a possiblity.  And the fat devil that was too busy being lazy to do anything.

I'm telling you this for several reasons:

1-I have to start somewhere with the truly embarrassing thoughts.
2a-If you had similar thoughts, you are not alone.
2b-If you are still having those thoughts and checking for a tumor right this moment PLEASE make today the first day of your new healthy lifestyle
3-If you laughed at this it is ok.  I can laugh now too, but then I feel tremendous sadness about it.  Your mind is a powerful thing. And mine could be a little manipulative B$%#H

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Monday, August 29, 2011

On a side note - If you need a personal Cheerleader let me know

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Back in the Saddle!

Happy New Day!

Yesterday's post was a result of my being mad at myself for my choices.  But there's good news!  You can always start over :-)  Got back to eating right today AND hitting the track after work.  I feel good. No, I feel GREAT! 

Your body is an amazing vehicle. You will probably see a difference in your body if you fall off the wagon for an extended period of time, but it will remember the old "you" quickly when you get back on track.  How awesome is that! 

Recently I was sick for about three weeks.  I had a horrible cough at night so it was really hard to go walking.  I could not take deep breaths without coughing so I gave my body a rest. Two weeks into it I had a nasty fall.  I fell and smashed my knees on the concrete step outside of my grandmom's house.  I skinned both knees and bruised the kneecaps.  That was four weeks ago.  It took me a week before I could walk at a halfway decent pace and another week before the seniors with walkers weren't passing me on the track.  Before the coughing I was walking 3-8 miles a day.  And now I was going a month without even walking one mile.  I wanted to cry every day.  It was going to take soooo long to make up that time.  I did my best eating right, but I could see my body changing.  But, for two weeks now I've been back to walking at least 3 miles every other day because my knees are still sore and not quite 100%.  But, the great news is that my body is back. 

It's so easy to say "Well I haven't been working out in so many days, one more day is not going to make a difference." or "I ate that most of that bag of cookies yesterday, what's the point of a salad today?".  That is the wrong attitude.  Don't forget that your body remembers.  It will respond quickly.  Just give it a chance.

Today is a NEW day.  Forget the bad ones.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

One Day at a Time

So how did I do during this Hurricane you ask?  Well, not so good.  Bah.  This is why this journey is so difficult.  You can prepare all you want, but things happen.  The news says there's a hurricane coming.  I say Great!  Let's go load up on healthy goodies.  Guess what!  It's all still in the fridge :-(

Friday: Get the call to go to Chick-Fil-A for lunch.  Usually not a problem.  I get the Grilled chicken on the wheat roll.  That's what I ordered, but what I got was the original chicken on the regular roll.  Did I take it back?  No.  I ate it. Crap. Oh and all of my waffle fries.  And did you know that they now have a cheese sauce for your fries?  Are they trying to kill me?  I at least gave myself points for not caving to that.

Saturday: Gonna meet grandmom for a movie and we'll go to Panera first for lunch.  Great.  I love Panera.  I'll even get a Strawberry salad before they move to the next seasonal salad.  Check.  Uh-oh.  Qualified for a free popcorn at the movies.  Well it does have an expiration date and I really don't know when I'll be back for my next um, sure I'll take it.  After the movie I make a quick stop at Target for some emergency Starbucks Chai that I can heat up during the storm...oh and throw that chocolate bar in the bag just in case.  It didn't even make it home.

Sunday: Irene is gone!  Yay!  No power...doh.  I get the text "want to meet for pizza?". YES!  So off to the local bar for pizza and a margarita. 

And now the guilt sets in :-(  WHY did I do it?  Sure it's ok to splurge a little.  You will lose your mind otherwise, but I am hard pressed to justify this.  I know I will be good this week, but it's going to take a long time before I forgive myself for falling off the wagon this weekend.  My other meals were fine, but since I didn't get to work out it's very difficult for me to let it go.

It's One Day At A Time!  I just failed a few days.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

The Addiction

Let's start with the honesty.  I'm not an alcoholic nor am I a gambler.  I completely sympathize with anyone who is suffering with those addictions.  But, I think a food addiction is harder to deal with in many ways.  Gamblers probably don't wake up betting.  Alcoholics probably do wake up drunk, but not all of the time.  But, if you have a food addiction, most likely you are waking up fat and hungry.  It's staring you in the face day after day. 

Even if you manage to get a handle on your addiction you can't escape the temptations.  If you are an alcoholic you can avoid bars and liquor stores. Gamblers can avoid casinos and race tracks. But, it's awfully hard for a food addict to avoid the grocery store.  In fact, it's impossible.  And then you have to face your demons head on at least three times a day for meals.  Going out to eat sucks.  Going to someone's house for dinner sucks.  You don't really have control over your options at that point. And do not even get me started on "donut" days at work.  I want to strangle someone on those days.

It took a lot for me to condition myself to grocery shopping and not caving.  I had heard repeatedly to "walk the outside" of the grocery store.  All the junk is in the middle.  But guess what!  Even if you do that, you still have to check out.  And what's at the check out?  CHOCOLATE!  So my cart will be full of vegetables, yogurt, chicken, wheat bread, and then it all comes tumbling down by a dang Kit Kat.  And I think we all know that it doesn't even make it home.  Shoot, it's gone before I even leave the parking lot.  FOILED AGAIN.

Let's talk about the unexpected battles.  As I write this hurricane Irene is swirling over me. You know that means that I had to go to the store yesterday to make sure I had enough food for the storm. I stocked up on salad essentials and I am good to go with turkey sandwiches on whole wheat.  But, that fat girl in side kept saying "What about the snacks?  You're going to be inside for days, you need snacks."  She wanted chips and salsa and about a pound of chocolate. And she almost won.  What she got though was carrots and guacamole and one bag of M&M's (I'm not a saint afterall). They were eaten last night if you must know.  So far I have been able to fend off the cravings, but tomorrow when I can't leave the apartment all day will be a different story. I can see myself contemplating the dangers of walking to the store, which will probably be closed anyway, just for a dang Snickers.
So I have come up with a few tips to help me through the tough times:

1-Going out to eat
     *Look at the menu ahead of time.  If you decide what you want before you go and don't need to look        at the menu you have less chance of changing your mind.  Please note- this is no guarantee :-( but it helps

2-Eating at a Friend's house
     *Offer to bring the salad.  You at least have control over that

3- "Donut" days at work
    *Just go ahead and quit your job.  Just kidding.  Although I feel like that every time.  Think of the calories.  They are empty calories.  Is it worth an hour on the treadmill?  I think not. But, if you have a sweet tooth go ahead and keep the 100-calorie packs of the chocolate cover pretzels in your desk.

4-Grocery shopping
    *Most grocery stores off at least one check out lane that is candy free.  Become familiar with it and make it a point to use that lane every time.

5-Emergency provisions
    *Don't Do it!  If you stock up on the junk food that is what you will eat. If you are stuck at home with healthy options only you won't regret it after.  But if you stock up on junk food you will hate yourself after you eat it all.

Diet Is a Four-Letter Word

 Just like every fat girl has a skinny girl trying to get out, I have a fat story trying to get out.  They say "write what you know". Well I know fat.

My entire life I have been at war with my weight.  I've won a few battles, but mostly my evil enemy has beaten me time and time again. I am finally winning, but I still have a long road ahead of me.  So here is my story:

My name is Jennie.  I am 38 years old.  I have been overweight for as long as I can remember.  Although I recently saw a picture of me when I was about five years old and I was as skinny as can be.  That made me cry.  In grade-school and high-school I was just overweight.  When I went off to college I started to get fat.  I apparently liked the freshman fifteen so much that I repeated it every year.  Since college it's been a roller coaster and it's been mostly up hill.  I did have a few years when I dropped down.  I spent one year working in NYC and walked everywhere.  I looked pretty good then, but still couldn't lose the belly. As soon as I left I ballooned up again.

Six years ago things changed for me.  I had just suffered serious heartbreak and my office-mate was preparing to get married.  So to support her I joined the gym with her through work.  I'll discuss that first week later, because that was a hoot. I became addicted.  We initially started going together and then I was going every day on my own.  I couldn't get enough.  The weight was coming off and I was feeling good.  What I didn't know then is that I was still a moron when it came to nutrition.  I could have lost so much more if only I had eaten right.  I wasn't eating horrible, I just wasn't eating what I should.

Fast forward a couple years and there was a follow-up heartbreak.  This one was even worse.  I couldn't breathe anymore and I had to move back north.  That meant leaving my gym. So here I was heartbroken and without a gym.  I walked as much as I could for the first couple months and seemed to be doing well.  And then then not so much.  The weight started to come back.  Great!  Now I was heartbroken and fat again.  I made the decision in November to start the South Beach Diet.  Because it's always best to start a new diet routine right before Thanksgiving.  But I was seeing results. I couldn't believe it.  Sure, I thought I was going to die and go into sugar-withdrawal, but it was making a difference.

So I had seen results with the gym and I had seen results with nutrition, but not together.  I'm still working on that.  It's been almost 4 years since then and I've been up and down so many times.  My emotions take over and I can't help it.

I am hoping that this journey together will help.  I am hoping it will help me heal and maybe help others to know they aren't alone.  If I can help inspire one person change their lifestyle then it will be a victory well won :-)