Friday, March 30, 2012

Mega Millions

I have five chances tonight.

If I win, I'm doing the following to aid my weight loss: (in no particular order)
  1. Personal Chef
  2. Personal Trainer (preferably tall, dark, and handsome)
  3. Dietician
  4. Some cosmetic surgery when I'm done (skin!)
Obviously, this just in relation to weight loss. I'd go absolutely bonkers spending it on other stuff. :)

Happy Weekend, friends! 5k tomorrow!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

My 600 LB Life

Have you seen this series? It is absolutely phenomenal.
The documentary follows 4 people, all 600+ pounds, who underwent gastric bypass surgery. It follows them for a total of seven years. It follows their ups and downs, both the successes and failures. While I won’t go into the specifics (you should really watch it), I have to admit it did scare me in a lot of ways.
1.)    Skin issues. – I already have excess skin. I’ve thought a lot about skin removal surgery, but after this documentary I’m not so sure I want to. Even after losing all the weight they wanted, they still had places where skin could not be removed. They had lots of scars. And the surgery itself looked more painful than the gastric bypass.

So I’m not sure what to do about my skin. I’m hoping over time a lot of it will recess – along with strength training it will go away on its own – but what if it doesn’t? What if I’ve permanently damaged my body and will always be afraid to go out in a bathing suit, or sleeveless shirt?

2.)    In a way this next point is comforting (that others fear this too), but it also hits home that I will forever be scared of being a fat woman again. By no means am I saying I’m not fat now, I’m just less fat than I was at 340 pounds. I don’t worry all the time that I’m being stared at. And one of my biggest fears is being fat again. I have nightmares about it.

3.)    Facing the demons that got me 340 pounds. This is really scary because I don’t know why I got to 340 pounds. When you watch shows like this they always seem to have a reason:  daddy issues, mommy issues, molestation. I don’t. I had a great childhood, I’m relatively normal; I have a caring family, job, friends… I have incredibly low self-esteem, but maybe that’s just from the weight itself? I’m not sure.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Weigh-In 3/26/2012

Previous:              221.0
Today:                  220.2
Loss:                        -0.8
My total goal for the month is 217 (down from 225 at the start of the month.) I guess I can still make it, I must increase the exercise this week if I want to, though.
So, 50 Shades of Grey, yeah.. still fanning myself. It is one HOT book, the rumors are true. Excellent, though. I'll post more later.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Fifty Shades of Grey

Has anyone read this book yet? I think it may be on my reading list next.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Weigh-In 3/20/2012

Scale fixed, crisis averted!

Previous:              222.0
Today:                  221.0
Loss:                        -1.0
It always seems so hard for me to break into that lower number. It's like my body knows its a victory for me to get into the teens. Or before this, the twenties. Or before that, the thirties. Ah well, maybe next week. At least its a loss.
My first 5k is in less than 2 weeks. EEEK!

Monday, March 19, 2012

No Weigh-In Today :(

So, I get up this morning and step on the scales like always, and it starts to climb and then ... completely shuts off. I momentarily had a bad flashback to my days when I'd step on the scales at my family's houses, and because I was too overweight the scale would completely shut off or flash the words "ERR ERR ERR ERR" over and over again, haha.

I finally realized that my batteries are dead. I plucked them out of the scales because I have to be able to take them physically into the battery store, give them a pitiful look, and say, "Help." Hopefully an update tomorrow!

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Neatest Thing - Cause I'm a Geek.

I will not lie, I have moderate OCD. I like things a certain way, I like things to be done and completed a certain way, and numbers and facts geek me out. So when I discover something that clicks, I think I just have to share it.
The other day I made the mistake of going to bed at 7:30 with my 3 year old. I was dead tired and after laying down and reading a bedtime story with him, I was out. At around 1 AM, my body decided I had enough sleep for a little bit. I was awake from 1 AM -4 AM. Not a big deal, I went back to bed at 4 and managed another 3 hours of sleep.
The next day though, I was starving. I hadn’t been this hungry in a LONG time. I’ve gotten used to a routine. I like routines. Carnation Sugar-Free Instant Breakfast in the morning, a 400-calorie meal at lunch, and then a 400-500 calorie meal for dinner. That’s it, every day. But that day I was famished. I managed somehow to push through without eating anything extra except 2 Hershey kisses.
Later, scouring the Internet for ideas like I love to do, I found this article.
We have very substantial research that shows if you shorten or disturb sleep, you increase your appetite for high-calorie dense foods," says Charles Samuels, MD, medical director of the Centre for Sleep and Human Performance in Calgary, Alberta. "On a simplistic level, your appetite changes."
Two hormones in your body play an important role in controlling appetite and satiety. Ghrelin stimulates appetite, causing you to eat; leptin suppresses appetite—so you'll stop eating—and stimulates energy expenditure. In a properly functioning brain, the two hormones are released on and off to regulate normal feelings of hunger. But research has shown that sleep deprivation can alter ghrelin and leptin levels.
"When sleep is restricted to four hours a night, ghrelin levels go up and leptin levels go down," says National Sleep Foundation spokesperson William Orr, PhD, president and CEO of the Lynn Health Science Institute in Oklahoma City. "So you have a greater amount of appetite and a greater amount of intake."
Now I knew that sleeping would cause you to be hungry late at night, but I had no idea that hormones messed up your appetite for the rest of the day.  I have to admit, I was pretty geek’d up about learning this.
And the reason I mention it today? I was up last night again at 2 AM … and currently starving, haha.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Weigh-In 3/12/2012

Previous:              224.5
Today:                  222.0
Loss:                      -2.5
Yeah, baby. Back in the saddle again.  I want to make Onederland before June.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Tips and Tricks of the Trade

One of my favorite things to do is scour the internet for new ideas for this weight loss. I don’t mean new diet fads, pills, or surgery. I like just simple tips and tricks. Everyone has their own tricks and tips to lose weight. Everyone has what works for them. These are what I’ve learned works for me over this journey:
1.       I drink A LOT. I can’t just do water, so my list includes black coffee and unsweetened tea.  It helps reduce my boredom eating. It flushes out your system. It keeps my hands busy doing something instead of filling them full of calories. It’s something I can focus on other than food.
2.       I wasn’t ever a big proponent of no carbs, but I have to admit, since I’ve been “limiting” them (attempt to keep my number at 60 or less) I have increased my weight loss. I never have a hamburger or hot dog bun, I never eat rice, I use the thin-sandwich bread slices, I reduce my enjoyment of spaghetti to once a month, and I stay away from cakes/cookies/candies.
3.       I started out eating 5 times a day (3 meals and 2 snacks.) I found that this just doesn’t work for me. I switched back to eating 3 times a day, with no snacks. Every once in a while I’ll have a dessert. I try to keep each meal at around 400 calories.  If I do indulge in dessert, I keep it to 150 or less.
4.       I love miso soup, or veggie soup, or any kind of broth I can eat/drink before a meal. I actually find, like I’ve read, that it does help to fill me up before a meal. I tend to eat less at a meal after I’ve had the soup. This is particularly effective when I go for sushi. If I have miso soup beforehand, one veggie roll is enough to fill me up.
5.       I used to loathe the thought of not using mayonnaise on my sandwiches, or salad dressing on my salads. I detested mustard. I have found, through this journey that it just takes some time. I kept reducing the amount I used of each (and including mustard) and eventually I removed mayo from my sandwiches all together. If I have a packet of ranch dressing now I’ll generally use ¼ of the packet. I never ever thought I would get to this point. Mayo tastes a little disgusting to me now.
6.       I find that I can do without “add-on” calories really easy. I never get cheese on my sandwiches, burgers, salads, tacos. I never get croutons. I do without mayo and salad dressing. I never use butter at the table. I can do without the rolls. I can do without appetizers. I don’t need dessert at a restaurant.  These sound common sense, but you are talking to a girl that used to go to a restaurant and act like it was a five course meal each time.
I know I have tons others. I’d like to hear from you guys as I am always looking for new ideas – do you have any tips or tricks you’ve learned along the way?

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Bad Diet Advice

It’s hard to politely decline bad advice sometimes.

Just as a little background, my office centers itself around food. We have pot lucks. We have office-bought lunches. We have events that are catered. We talk about what we had for dinner the night before, what we’re having for lunch that day, and what we plan to snack on in between. We share recipes, we share reviews on restaurants, and we share our food in the fridge.

In a recent discussion about food, a co-worker attempted to convince me that cheating every now and then isn’t bad, as long as you get back to your diet the next day.

What kind of addict thinks it will be okay for plan-ahead relapsing as long as you are sober from then on? I will not plan ahead to relapse into bad eating. I know it’s going to happen – we have to eat and we are constantly bombarded in all directions with food – but to plan ahead to relapse just seems like the most counter-productive behavior I can imagine.

I’ve learned to politely nod my head, smile, and walk-away when it comes to bad diet advice. It’s taken a while, though!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Not Sure Why I'm Surprised.

Along the way, I've had some awkward moments with people who were nicely trying to express their happiness that I've lost 116 pounds. I've had people who asked if they'd be offended if they told me how great I looked, or asked how much I've lost. But I've never been truly offended like I was yesterday by a "friend" via a message on Facebook. I received the following message:

Hey pretty lady! Hadn't talked to you in a while and was creepin on your fb page ;). Noticed you were doing well with your weight loss and that makes me happy. I have a something I think would interest you greatly. It requires only the effort to take each day at the correct time and the results are unbelievable! An acquaintance of mine, {name deleted for privacy}, was chopping away the usual 3-5 lbs a week like you when she was lucky enough to have a friend show her this and in the first 9 days she lost 20lbs with no change in routine. I'd love to help you achieve your goal and give you the tools to be healthier and happy! Give me a shout if you are seriously interested in getting to the place you wanna be?!

...after I confirmed he wasn't hacked (it sounded like someone hacked his FB and was sending out messages) I was red-faced angry. And I'm not even sure this was an appropriate reaction, but I was mad. The quotes "chopping away at the usual 3-5 lbs a week like you" and "give you the tools to be healthier and happy!" just ate at my inside's like nothing else.

I thought about it, and thought about it, and after consulting with others, I decided to respond. While I won't go into the specific biting letter I sent back, I did explain how 3-5 pounds a week is NOT usual. In fact it's a great accomplishment. It's something I work at very hard EVERY SINGLE DAY. I explained how losing 20lbs in 9 days is UNHEALTHY and I do not think he has my health or happiness in mind at all by sending this message. 


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Monday, March 5, 2012

Monday Weigh-In 3/5/2012

Previous:             225.0
Today:                  224.5
Loss:                      -0.5

I lost a crummy half-pound.

All around me I have friends (and they mean well) telling me that slowing down my weight loss is inevitable, that it’s going to slow down as I get smaller and that’s okay. I usually smile and nod, politely, and keep repeating that they’re wrong.

I know myself, and I know that any time I accept that particular mentality, I will be in trouble. At first it will be okay to lose a pound a week, and then it will be okay that it was just a half a pound. Soon following will be the, “Well I didn’t lose any weight but I didn’t gain!” and then will come, “It’s only a pound gain.” Before I know it, the weight will snowball back on.

The one thing I’ve learned is that losing sight of your goal and determination is a major problem, and I can worry about maintaining when I get there. In the meantime, if I’m not losing at least 1-2 pounds a week (and that’s being generous) I should remain on my own case.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Pick Your Hard.

Being Fat is Hard. Losing Weight is Hard. Pick Your Hard.
This is, by far, my favorite motivational quote I’ve found throughout this weight loss experience. It’s very true, very to the point, and gives me the kind of motivation that my best work out songs do.
Losing weight has been the longest hard I’ve ever had, if that makes sense. It is a daily struggle to make sure I don’t overeat, I exercise, and I get water in. It has to be at the forefront in my head constantly.
In the end, it’s the little rewards you get while along the journey that does make it all worth it.  I have the ability to breathe and wear my seat belt at the same time. I can walk down the street without paranoia kicking in that everyone is staring at me (in a bad way).  People comment about the fact they can see my bones (ewww) and wrap their arms around me with room to spare. I can fit comfortably in an airplane seat. I can walk, and even jog, for an hour without having to stop. The best part is I keep discovering more rewards as I go along.
I’m glad I picked the right hard.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Holy Frijoles, Where Have I Been?

I am so sorry for the long absense. My sister passed away in September. Although it was a long battle with cervical cancer, it still seemed unexpected to me.

I am going to be working on reading! And reading! And catching up, haha.

By the way, I'm 225 pounds. And it is amazing. Thanks, Alan, for kicking my butt.