Thursday, April 30, 2009

It's decided

I am going back on starting tomorrow. I just am.

The plan:

Daily walks and/or runs
Tracking food
Daily weighs
Sign up at the gym

That's it. It's worked before, and it will work again. Thanks, Claire for pointing out what should have been obvious: I am my greatest work of art.

C. is totally on board, too. When I told him, he was like, "Thank god. I've totally gained weight." Aw.

Hello again

Hmph. Hello!

I'm still gaining weight. Life has been a little crazy lately so food choices have gone out the window completely. Definitely eating emotionally, like 75% of the time, or something.

We were dealing with our sick cat, who we finally decided to have put down yesterday morning. I went to work after that but was a huge mess, so went home after a couple hours and slept most of the afternoon and ate crap. I'm still shaken today, so I can tell you for a fact that no major lifestyle changes are going to happen soon, but damn! I have been feeling so crappy. My relationship with myself has been just terrible, even if other aspects of my life are good (aside from losing Azrael, of course). I barely look in mirrors anymore, my clothing situation has become utterly deplorable (and I am caring less and less just because there is little I can do about it at the moment financially), and I know that my hair has become a shield. It's just about to my waist in the back, shorter in the front and I totally use it to hide and/or distract... although who the hell do I think I am fooling, anyway? It's pretty ridiculous. I desperately want and need a haircut.

I feel like I am approaching personal crisis mode.

I still want to, and plan to, join the gym like I was talking about in my last post. I should be able to swing it pocketbook-wise in the next week or two, and I will do it, I promise! I also really miss running, truly. And I have an excellent impetus to start up again tout de suite. It involves writing about my experiences as a runner and submitting it to be considered for a book of collected stories on the subject. I would love to write about how I developed last year, what a struggle it was and is now that I am lapsed. But I also want to be doing it again as I am writing the thing, otherwise how would it be relevant, really? I love to write and would love to have a story published. This is a great opportunity on several levels that I really need to commit to. I'm thinking I may start tomorrow. I have to do something.

Though I hate to say it, I have an absolute loathing for my body lately. It's like we are the worst enemies and I don't want it to be this way. I want to rekindle the love we once had for each other. The thing is, the ball is totally in my court because I know the minute I decide to start treating it nicely again, it will reciprocate tenfold.

Must commit. Must.

Friday, April 24, 2009

I just wanted to say

...that I think I am going to join a nice gym. I had an amazing chat with a new friend of mine while bowling last night about body and weight issues, and we decided it would be awesome to have each other as gym buddies. She has a contract to finish out with Curves, but after that she'll perhaps join me at the gym...

I'm not sure when I will do this, probably in the next week or two. But I am going to do it.

By the way... I finally got over 100 in bowling! 104 was my best score so far last night. Bowling also totally kicks your a$$, in the best possible way. Yay bowling!

My eating hasn't improved much yet, but for now I will focus on improving my physical activity. Lots of gardening is on the schedule this weekend, and maybe even a walk or run.

My moods are dramatically up and down. I think I might be on an upswing.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Thank you.

I'd like to say a big thanks to those of you who offered words of support via comments and emails. I'm very touched by your words of encouragement, and maybe you would be happy to know that it really does have a great effect on me—it does make a difference, whether I am getting back in the proverbial saddle or not. Your words help me to not want to give up completely, and that is so important. Isn't it?

I am within just 15 pounds of where I started back in January 2008. It's really discouraging to see a certain number on the scale, or to feel how my clothes don't really fit so well, if at all, anymore. I still have garbage bags full of my old fatter clothes, which I suppose I can see as a good thing, but it makes me wonder: if I hadn't known those clothes were still there, would I have been more diligent to keep the weight off? All these little psychological games I play with myself get so tiresome. I don't like to second guess my choices, playing Monday morning quarterback. What's the point?

I'm trying to think more about timelines than deadlines, greyscales instead of black and whites (you know who you are out there!). I think having goals is still important, but not to put a due date on them.

There have been some stressful things going on in my life lately, which don't help matters. I listen to my thoughts and they sound like this: "Oh, I can't wait to have lunch." "I will have a big bowl of ice cream sundae for dessert, that will feel good." I find myself looking forward to eating as an event more than most things; the converse of this is the daily debate with C. about what's for dinner. I also think things like, "I wish we didn't have to eat, what a pain." All or nothing, I guess. Moderation has not been appealing to me in the least, and I have usually been eating beyond being full.

It's not comfortable physically or emotionally, but I just keep doing it. And I suffer the effects: depression, lethargy, seclusion. Fortunately I have a loving, supportive partner, without whom I am not sure what I'd do... he tells me things like, "You'll lose the weight," very matter-of-factly.

Positive reinforcement is nice. Enough times, hearing over and over "You can do it!" or "You're worth it!", you start to actually believe it.

But no one thing is a magic bullet. I have to take that inspiration and encouragement and manifest it into something real. I know I have it in me, somewhere deep down. I have to find the strength and confidence to pull it out of the muck.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

It has to be said

I am really upset about my weight situation right now. I've had a total loss of control and have a bizarre totally caring about it/totally not caring about it dichotomy that makes dealing with things really difficult.

Yesterday I heard the former tennis pro Monica Seles on NPR talking about her new book, which apparently talks a lot about her own struggles with food and body issues. Apparently she has been "OK" for the past five years, and hearing her talk reminded me of how I sound when I tell people about when I am in the middle of losing a good chunk of weight, when I am in the zone and doing well. Kind of all dreamy and confident and emphatic. Big difference is, obviously, she has been able to maintain her weight loss for five years, whereas I haven't ever been able to for longer than six months.

There's a serious disconnect here. I was totally thinking that there is something in my brain that really needs fixing, and that if I could fix it, I wouldn't have a weight problem. That the fat is merely a symptom of something else entirely. The honest truth is that I don't know how to have a healthy relationship with food, not at all. And until I can fix that, I will probably never be able to lose and keep off weight. This has been going on for practically a lifetime.

I'm wondering if I should seriously consider returning to some form of counseling specifically addressing this issue, or even attending OA meetings. The latter sounds really unappealing, though. I actually did go to a couple OA meetings about 15 years ago and they just made me feel funny, but who knows? Maybe it would be different at this point in my life. All I know is that I have to do something, because I just can't keep doing this to myself. I am simply not happy with my body because it is not serving me well. I'm keenly aware of certain limitations returning as I gain more and more weight back, and it's freaking me the fuck out.

There. I said it.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Not again!

Ugh, I am doing it again—unconsciously avoiding posting here.

I'm sort of wondering if I might just informally withdraw for a while. To be honest, blogging about the things I have been going through on this stalled journey gets kind of depressing. I really haven't gotten anywhere in the past month and it just plain sucks. I'm not having a pity party or anything, and I'm going to say terrible things about myself because of it. I am just sick of analyzing everything.

The quick set of facts is that I have pretty much stayed within the same three pounds or so for weeks. And today I weighed in at 330.2, which really pissed me off. It really did. But, it wasn't unexpected. I've been eating pretty willy-nilly the past week, like the switch was turned off again. I don't know... I DO care, and I hate having to rifle through the bags of fatter fat clothing that had become too big for me when I lost weight last year for something to wear, but I wonder if I have it in me.

I'm so sick of this roller coaster ride. I'm sick of wearing the same clothes over and over. I'm sick of not fitting in (sometimes physically, sometimes socially, sometimes both), but I'll be darned if I can do anything about it.

I don't feel like going out walking or running in the cold and snow, and yes, we've had winter weather the past few days. I can't tell you how sick of that I am. It might be part of what is getting me down, I'd bet five dollars on it, in fact. I want nice weather, I want to be able to work in the gardens, I want to go for walks and runs and bike rides and enjoy just being. The winter's been too long; I just can't take it anymore. Not in April.

So much for being born and bred in the Buffalo area, huh? It's sort of how I never get used to getting a period every month, either. They still both suck.

I am taking a break from here for a while. It may last a month, or a week, or just a day. But I need to give myself permission (or persimmon, like I was originally about to type) to do this. I have a feeling I will feel much better about everything once we really see spring, and once I am not in the middle of that time of the month anymore.

Maybe I should move south and get a hysterectomy.

If you want to stay in touch, feel free to email me. Seriously.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Life imitating Art

Well, here it is Thursday already and I haven't stopped in since Monday! This week really zipped by. Things are happening, is why. In my "other" life, that is, my non-losing-weight-and-blogging-about-it life, I am an artist. Sure, I have a day job as a graphic designer, but I strongly identify as an artist. In fact, I can even say to someone seriously, "I am an artist" and not feel funny about it anymore.

I've been an artist all my life, but it really has only been since I started grad school in 2005 that I really took myself seriously; that was mainly because I made the conscious decision to give my art a chance. To give the artist in me a chance to exist and prosper. And since then, because I have been making the effort, I'm having some success. I just found out yesterday that I've been awarded another solo exhibition in the coming year or two (the gallery hasn't worked out its schedule yet). To think that five years ago, one of my life goals was to have a solo exhibition at all, just one! because it seemed like such an insurmountable goal at the time is incredible: I've got one up now, and I have two lined up for the future. In a matter of months!

As I am writing this I realize I could totally compare that experience with my experience here, as the person you have come to know. I guess I feel the same way about ever becoming not fat now as I did about ever having a solo exhibition five years ago. Which means, I can TOTALLY do this if I give myself a chance, make an effort, keep trying. How many rejection letters does an artist get in her lifetime? How many times do I mess up with my eating and have to start over? It's all the same, really. But you don't see me giving up on my art just over some pitfalls here and there. That perseverance has been rewarded, just in the same way that if I stick with my health and weight loss efforts, I will get results.

Anyway, I've just been a tad busy, if only in my head, distracted. I have been eating pretty well this week, though. I find myself going to bed hungry every evening, which is kind of a nice feeling. I have breakfast, I have lunch, I have dinner. Sometimes I track the food, but mostly I haven't been. I've been trying to listen to my body, mostly, and go accordingly.

I'm not losing weight like crazy. This morning I weighed in at 327 even, but being able to maintain is fine with me for now. I know that I am headed in the right direction. Yesterday, I went out for my first run since November or December. I just went a mile, and I walked about half of it, but I did it and it felt amazing. I was high on endorphins all day, it was great! I have definitely lost some fitness, in the past few months, but I haven't lost all. It's heartening.

The other day I was browsing around the Internet and came across this blog, which made me consider eliminating sugar from my diet and even the whole raw food lifestyle. I like hearing how people have a TON of energy and lose weight like crazy. Such a restricted diet sounds interesting to me, would make things so much simpler. But, there I was the next morning, unwilling to leave the sugar off my bowl of Rice Krispies. And so it goes.

I'm still thinking about it, though. I may try something new for even just a few days and see how it goes. Variety is the spice of life after all, yes?