Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Data

NOTE: Weight on or around the last day of each month, except for May 2014.

2014

Starting weight: 372

May: lost 6 pounds (started mid-way), 366
June: lost 13 pounds, 353
July: lost 8 pounds, 345
August: lost 6 pounds, 339
September: lost 13 pounds, 326
October: lost 7 pounds, 319
November: lost 4 pounds, 315
December: lost 7 pounds, 308

Total lost in 2014: 64 pounds


2015

Starting weight: 308

January: lost 10 pounds, 298
February: lost 1 pound, 297
March: lost 3 pounds, 294
April: lost 5 pounds, 289
May: lost 2 pounds, 287
June: lost 7 pounds, 280
July: lost 8 pounds, 272
August: gained 4 pounds, 276
September: lost 3 pounds, 273
October: lost 5 pounds, 268
November: gained 4 pounds, 272*
December: gained 4 pounds, 276

* I did get down to 264 the day before Thanksgiving, but alas...

Total lost in 2015: 32 pounds


2016

Starting weight: 276

January: lost 6 pounds, 270
February: gained 11 pounds, 281 (dammit!)
March: gained 4 pounds, 285
April: lost 5 pounds, 280
May: gained 3 pounds, 283
June: lost 4 pounds, 279
July: gained 8 pounds, 287
August: gained 9 pounds, 296
September: gained 3 pounds, 299
October: lost 10 pounds, 289
November: gained 11 pounds, 300 (ARGH!!!)
December: gained 1 pound, 301

Total lost gained in 2016: 25 pounds

2017

Starting weight: 301 

January: gained 2 pounds, 303 
February: lost 2 pounds, 301
March: lost 4 pounds, 297
April:
May:
June:
July:
August:
September:
October:
November:
December:


Total lost in 2017: 

OVERALL TOTAL:

Monday, September 29, 2014

Hi hi!



My first pair of rad prescription sunglasses — love.
Hi hi,

Yes, my goodness, I am still cranking it out. Weight loss has been slllloooowww since the art fair the first week of September, but that's OK. Today I'm 328 – just six more pounds for an even 50, woo!

Things have been good. I mean, I feel like things are normal, you know? NORMAL. As in, this is all becoming normal for me. That is probably my very main goal in all this: Normalize my relationship with food and eating, normalize regular exercise, normalize balanced nutrition, etc. I definitely feel like that is happening.

I'm starting to be able to wear the size 24 pants and jeans I've had tucked away. Some fit, some are snug but wearable, some not doable just yet, you know how it goes. Nevertheless I have more clothing options from my own closet, which is great.

I've been feeling really good in my skin. Confident. Sexy, even. My hair has been growing out and it looks pretty nice. I have been buying several pairs of cool glasses to wear and switch out on a whim. I am more active, more capable. (Though quite frankly I am still achey a lot.)

We still haven't gone hiking again — unfortunately my partner's back often gives him trouble and so we've been waiting for it to feel better. In the meantime, he's all geared up with good shoes and other fun stuff. He's also decided that he wants to do some star-gazing and bird-watching, which sounds great to me! If not this year then next we have plans to incorporate all these things together, plus a little camping (which I never thought I'd hear myself say!)... these are things I am really looking forward to, and he is, too. Baby steps, though. Here's hoping we can get out this coming weekend for at least a little hike. We sort of wimped out this past weekend because my schedule has been so busy all month, and Sunday was the first day in a while that I had free. We opted for relaxation, though I also managed to do some laundry and cleaned our main living areas, which was much needed — good exercise, too!

Anyway, I've just been living life. Enjoying it. And keeping on keeping on.

How about you?

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Making Different Decisions

One thing I have been noticing lately is that I have been making different choices about eating and having it feel very natural.

As you know, I did not and will not stop eating any food I love. If you've been reading along you know that I love chocolate and ice cream and keep them in rotation on an almost daily basis. (Yes, it's true — and I'm still losing weight, *gasp*!)

Well, something has been happening, especially in the past couple weeks it seems. There has been many a day when my eating has been less than optimum, whether it is eating too much or not eating enough veggies and the like. Like today, especially this morning. I won't go into detail with what it involved, but it definitely leaned more toward simple carbs and sugar than complex carbs, say, and protein. Then, I'm sitting there as lunchtime approaches thinking about how easy it would be to just go and have an old standby, my inexplicable fast food fave, McDonald's. If you can be addicted to the stuff, then yes, I probably was. So every once in a while I still think about getting it. Sometimes, I do, but seriously maybe once a month, which is a vast improvement over several times a week like I did not so long ago.

Anyway, so McDonald's was kind of floating through my head. Then I was thinking. Don't be a dope. I didn't want to be a dope. I also wanted something along those lines. This is what happens when you don't bring your lunch and you don't want to go to the awesome salad place a couple blocks away again.

I ended up going to Wendy's. I know it's still not great, but you can make a fairly decent meal of the Ultimate Grill chicken sandwich and a large chili and it's not that bad in the big scheme of things. In doing so, I avoided a lot of grease, salty french fries, and a diet soda that I would have inevitably ended up with from McD's.

For dinner we opted for Chinese take-out again (I swear that I do cook! We make awesome home-cooked meals much of the time) (NOTE: We've been trying out various Chinese take-out places lately and have found some gems, and I know how to eat Chinese take-out right.)

This particular place has a traditional menu available, so the selections are a bit off the beaten path and totally awesome. I wanted to keep it veggie and light to make up for the rest of the day, so I tried dry tofu with leeks and some egg drop soup with seaweed (!!!).

Well, sometimes it pays to be culinarily adventurous and sometimes it doesn't. I would say in this case it's half and half. The good news was that I ate about half of what I normally would have, and it was all quite nutritious and low-cal. And now I have leftovers for tomorrow's lunch, for better or worse. Nothing tasted bad, but it just didn't blow me away. And that's fine.

The final chapter of this little story is what happened after dinner. I ended up going for a walk in the dark, which was really nice — we live in a great neighborhood for something like that — and got a nice little workout, and then came home and spent about an hour doing some serious tidying in the laundry area of our basement. When I was finished, I thought to myself, Hey! I burned some calories enough to have a serving of ice cream!

And then, I thought... didn't I have enough sweets for the day? I can wait until tomorrow instead.

What?!?

What is happening to me? Stuff just like this is happening again and again lately. And it's not painful or horrible. I am not depriving myself of anything, however I am obviously learning balance and how to make better choices for myself. That feels pretty incredible.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

A Little Bit Down, but NOT Out

Well, today we were supposed to go on our second hike and I was really excited!

But we decided last night not to go. I have been suffering some pain all week since the art fair — not sure what I did to myself as there was no "event" where I tripped, turned my ankle, nothing like that. Just since Monday, my right leg and foot have been hurting quite a lot and sometimes spreading up and down that side of body. I'm guessing it's a pinched nerve and/or sore ligaments around my knee. It's so strange, I've never experienced anything quite like it before. It's very discouraging.

It's actually fine to just walk on, but stairs have been especially hard. I thought it was feeling better yesterday, but when I had to go down the stairs to use the bathroom (I was at work and for some stupid reason there is no bathroom on the main floor), my knee almost gave out at one point! I have to be very gentle and careful when I'm on the stairs. So I don't see how hiking would be a good idea while it's still not quite right.

As for my partner, he has back trouble and it's been acting up the past couple days. We're quite a pair, aren't we? I guess it's called Life After 40. Har har.

As for the rest of things... it has been a little challenging recovering from that really taxing weekend. (Note to self: Either don't do that again, or hire some damned help!) As I mentioned previously, I had some sort of stomach bug and so ended up not eating much. My weight plummeted all the way down to 330 pounds. Since then, it's leveled off and I've been at 334 now for a couple days. That, too, is a little discouraging, but not bad. I need to be kind to myself.

I skipped the gym this past week both to give my body a break and also because of my stupid leg, but I did get two walks in. In lieu of the hike, I will be plain walking today, and then on Tuesday I have an appointment with my trainer again that I will keep no matter what. I'm sure we can work around my leg if it's still giving me trouble.

My eating has been OK. My sweet tooth has been in full force and I'll have a few mini chocolates on any given day, or a serving of ice cream. What I have been learning is balance, though, so it's not really an issue. It's definitely not the end of the world and I am certainly not "cheating" by eating these things. I track every bite on MyFitnessPal, which is a great reality check. I don't always have "on" days but overall I do see a big shift in the kinds of things I put in my mouth. Sorry, kids, chocolate and ice cream will never, ever be off that list.

Almost every day I have to remind myself that I am not in a race. This is one of the ways I am making room for all the food I like to eat into my regular menu. Could I lose weight faster? Most certainly, but then I am not creating habits for myself that will be sustainable for all time, and that is really what my main goal is. Yes, I am trying to lose weight, but no, I don't have a deadline. I don't have a timeframe.

That said, I'm not a Vulcan. I do look at the end of 2014 and think, hey, I could probably get down to 300 pounds by the new year! I do have these thoughts. But how important is it really to do that by a certain date rather than just assuring that it's definitely going to happen, period? You know what I mean? This is the conversation I have with myself every day.

As always, ONWARD.

UPDATE! Shortly after I wrote this post, I got on the scale not expecting much. Turns out that I am back down to 331. Super! Go figure.

Friday, September 12, 2014

A New Sport!

So you guys, one of the most exciting things that happened between the last time I posted and the time before that was legion. The Friday of Labor Day weekend, my partner wanted to get out of the house and suggested that we go for, of all things, a hike.

Well, I had a ton of things to do, but two thoughts popped into my head: One, that I should take any opportunity to go out and do something with said partner, who tends to be a homebody and not very interested in exercise; two, that this would be a good chance for ME to get some exercise in, and a little adventure while I was at it.

I am not an outdoorsy type at all. Never have been. So I was probably more surprised than anyone that I actually really LOVED going hiking. Granted, even without the best shoes or gear, and even though we probably bit off a bit more than we could chew, we did great and we really enjoyed ourselves. Of course the scenery was amazing, and I enjoyed challenging myself physically.

Here I am at the head of our first trail, Silent Wood (moderate level, yikes!), in East Concord, NY. The trail is 1.75 miles long and it took about an hour and a half for us to complete it.

Indie rockin' hiker.

Now both of us are really excited to try a new one every weekend until the weather doesn't allow us to... and yes, I know that people do hike in winter, but I don't know if we'll be doing that. We do want to try snowshoeing, so maybe...

This is truly an unexpected boon to my fitness efforts and to my relationship — something fun that we can do together. My guy is having fun doing all the research about the different places we can go. We are fortunate to live in a region of the country that has a lot to offer as far as hiking goes. 

I will be sure to report on our future adventures.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Prattling On

Me at the art fair! You can't tell, but I am actually wearing a dress here. Photo by Alice O'Malley

My goodness, it's been a time!

Since I last wrote, I hit a 10% body weight loss, and shortly after the 40 pound mark. It was wonderful.

I've been planking almost every day AND I FREAKING LOVE IT.

Last weekend, I had a booth at an art fair. I (wo)manned it by myself except for about an hour on Saturday when a friend dropped by and watched it for me while I had a quick lunch (and then lost the lunch). It was two eight-hour days of almost constant socializing, plus three hours at the VIP viewing for one evening. Plus booth set-up (for which I had awesome help), and take down (for which I did not).

But wait! There's more!

On top of all that, it was (and still is, ugh) that time of the month, AND I woke up Friday morning (the first of three fair days) with some sort of stomach ailment that left me completely empty and mostly unable to eat during the weekend. Oh my god, it was a Herculean effort to get through it, but I did.

Well, I ended up getting down to 330 pounds — I basically lost almost ten pounds over the course of a week. It was crazy. I won't lie, either. It felt pretty good even though I was feeling crappy.

Fast forward to today. Something's going on with my poor legs, especially my right one, that still is not resolved. It really hurts, though I have taken a couple walks and I'm still able to do planks OK. The main problem seems to be when I stand up from sitting for a while, like at work. I am also still really, really tired. I also started eating normally again, and as predicted the pounds bounced back on. I'm not upset about it; I expected it.

I mentioned that I'm on my period at the moment and it's making me a little sweets-crazy. I didn't eat the best yesterday (in fact I ate way over my usual daily intake), and so far I haven't been super great today. But, I am tracking my food, as always — I think this is important — and while I am not feeling optimum emotionally or physically, I'm nowhere near giving up or anything. That's not what this is about. We have hard days, we have hard weeks, sometimes more. But we have to cling to what is important and what the big picture is about. That is what I am trying to focus on. What are the positives? How far have I come already?

I do post little bits here and there about what I have been doing and how I have been doing on my Facebook page... and people seem to enjoy it for the most part. I can't tell you how many people came up to me at the art fair to say how great I look or well I am doing and how I've been inspiring them. I love that. I've also been kind of listening to what I say to people and how I am talking about what I am doing. The last thing I want to do is prosthelytize, but I feel like I have to stop myself midway talking to avoid it. Like about the part where, dude, I am NOT dieting! This is my life. Blah blah blah.

And realizing how much I freaking HATE diets and the diet industry and anything associated with it? How much I hate low-fat this and no-carb that and "I was bad" this and cheating that. I'm not interested in demonizing food or making it a savior. I'm interested in eating food that is real and food that doesn't have a lot of unnatural crap added to it. Do I always eat this kind of food? No. But I try.

I am not perfect and I will never be perfect.

This is not a race.

One day at a time. One hour at a time. One minute at a time.

Be kind to yourself. Always. Honor your body.

Blah blah blah.

(This has turned out to be a much-needed pep talk for myself. I just feel crappy this week, but this, too, shall pass.)