eastbaymomma

Archive for the ‘Random Thoughts’ Category

Oh cereal, I must let you go

In Random Thoughts, The Program on July 17, 2013 at 4:12 pm

When I gained 99lbs you would have thought it was because of binging on junk food like candy, cookies, cake, chips, fast food, etc. Although I did eat some of that stuff, really I ate “healthy” food in excess. For example, raisin bran is a relatively healthy food, right? Nope, not when you have had three overflowing large bowls in rapid succession it isn’t!!!

I have been able to keep potion sizes of healthy food in check throughout my sixty pound weight loss this year, except for cereal. It is like I become a cereal zombie and, in a daze, I pour another bowl, after I have just had one! And it isn’t Lucky Charms or Coco Puffs it is Shredded Wheat and Cheerios! Super frustrating. I have been fighting this behavior for awhile now and all I can think to do is that maybe I need to simply abstain from cereal for awhile. Give it the twenty-one days that experts say are needed to form new habits and then try and see if I can eat cereal in a normal, properly portioned way. I hate doing extreme things like this but for now I think I must… I don’t want anything, not a stupid bowl (or three) getting between me and the final thirty pound weight loss!

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Six Months, Thirty Pounds

In Random Thoughts, The Program, Uncategorized on July 16, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Alright folks, I am super impatient to get the remaining weight off. I feel like I have to do something while I wait! Starvation diets and crazy amounts of exercise aren’t going to work for me, tempting as the quick results would be, I have to be reasonable and still function well! In fact, I have been doing a plan for months that has been working, just very slooooooowly… So, to calm the jitters and the rapid extreme weight loss fantasy schemes going on in my head (as a Mom to a toddler I just can’t go crazy;I need my energy), I think it is time to set some goals

My baby turns two the end of January, 2014. How about I set my goal to have the remaining pregnancy weight (and then some) off by her birthday? That gives me six months to lose thirty pounds. That works out to be five pounds per month. This, I think, is doable, even with the multiple months of holiday food craziness near her birthday. This means monthly weight check-ins, here on the blog.

Also, I have heard that people who give themselves non-food rewards at milestones are more successful. Sooooo… On August 15th, if I have lost 5lbs by then I am rewarding myself with a new piece of jewelry that I can look at daily and say, I did it! I am on my way! I am going to make it! We aren’t talking diamonds lol, but something I wouldn’t normally ever buy so that it is a real treat.

64lbs down, 30 to go….The journey continues!!

Well… That didn’t work well for me!

In Random Thoughts, The Program, Uncategorized on July 15, 2013 at 9:50 pm

Well, I tried the no sugar, flour and wheat diet for the first three days and I felt a bit better physically but I was SO CRANKY! At the end of the third day I broke and had some sugar (sour patch kids candy, no less!)

Instead of beating myself up and saying why oh why don’t you have more will power, I decided to go back to what has worked for months: logging my calories via an app and staying within my calorie allotment. The slow but steady method, in which I don’t feel crazy-deprived, is what I can sustain. It is just so hard being patient with the weight loss but it sure is better than walking around super cranky and then having way too much candy!

What I Have Been Doing

In Exercise, Random Thoughts, The Program on July 8, 2013 at 11:28 pm

I thought I should check in and let you know what my program has been the last few months. The core of it has been to log my calories. I have been using an app called MyPlate by Livestrong. My weight loss has been very slow (but steady). Just a few days I changed my setting from “very active” to “moderately active” which I think is more appropriate. This approach to diet has really worked for me since Mid-March. I rarely if ever feel deprived and it has become like second nature.

For exercise I ordered that Insanity workout….embarrassing but true! I needed something to do at home while my toddler naps. So far it has been great! I do it more like every other day, not every day like the program suggests; I have to make it work with my life…. I was running for exercise using a free app (couch to 5k) but a toddler who has become anti-stroller has made that not work well.

I am looking forward to reporting good progress to you in the next month!

Fitting Into Old Clothes

In Random Thoughts on June 29, 2013 at 12:03 am

I had forgotten about one of the great benefits of weight loss, which I am finding especially true while losing the pregnancy weight: fitting into old clothes. Today was a particularly hot day. I go on a mommy and me hike every week at this time. I was not looking forward to hiking in crazy hot black leftover maternity pants. They have been getting looser and looser but not to the falling off me point so I have kept them around. Today, on a whim, I thought, hey, why not try my old hiking skirt. And you guessed it…it fit! It has an elastic tie and some give but still, it fit!!! All this hard work is totally paying off! When you have had so much extra weight to shed it can be overwhelming and these small victories feel really, really good!!

Dieting State of Grace

In Random Thoughts on April 23, 2013 at 12:59 pm

About three weeks ago I was going through a tough time – bored with the diet, frustrated by the slow movement of the scale, starting to cook up obsessive diet and exercise plans, etc. After pushing through it (and thankfully not making radical changes that just would have been distractions), I have arrived in this golden period of dieting that I don’t think I have ever experienced before: I am not obsessed with food, I am not overly hungry, I am not obsessed with dieting “tricks” and even though the scale only lightly decreases I am not freaked out about it.
What has happened???

It is a dieting state of grace. I am sixty-one pounds down and have thirty-eight to go and for some reason, the last few weeks, thirty-eight pounds doesn’t seem as irritating, frustrating and impossible as it did three weeks ago. I am so grateful. I have been hesitant to write a blog post about this because, superstitiously, I have been worried that if I acknowledged how great the last few weeks have been that it could go away. Fingers crossed that it won’t!

Stay the course

In Random Thoughts, Uncategorized on April 2, 2013 at 12:25 am

For the last week or so I have been doing some funky thinking about my weight loss plan and I have realized that it is a habit I need to call the three week curse. It seems like each time I commit to a new approach for weight loss somewhere around the three week mark I start having this internal debate about the effectiveness of the program and start beating myself up that perhaps I have not done as well as I should have. I then start trying to think up a new weight loss approach… even if the original approach is working!!!

What is up with this??? Is it that I have almost cruised into that awesome 28-day golden ticket zone where experts say health changes become habit and automatic so I for some reason want to self-sabotage before that point? Is it that I get bored with a program and want to change things up? Is it some aloof sense of fear of being thin again (if I am thin I can’t use being fat for reasons I don’t do x, y or z)? Does being fat give me some tangible way to express anger at the world, at people not treating me the way that I want because many people do treat fat people differently (I have been both) in my experience? None of these thoughts ring completely true to my situation. I can’t quite figure it out. But I have been at this weight loss game long enough to know this three week angst phenomenon exists.

This time around I think I handled it appropriately. There were two days I went slightly over my calorie allotment, but not by much. I allowed myself to engage in the defeatist and obsessive thoughts because really, how can I stop them? Most importantly, I did not stop my program. I am doing the weight loss the healthy way, modifying my calorie intake, making healthy food choices, not engaging in radical self deprivation and and only exercising moderately for mental health, not weight loss.

Previously I may have resolved to try a different weight loss technique after a weekend of “free” eating. I may or may not start that technique after the weekend was over. For sure I would have a lot of disappointed mental chatter. So, I am going to be like the turtle in the children’s fable this time. Slow and steady wins the weight loss race!

Another motivating metric

In Random Thoughts, Uncategorized on March 21, 2013 at 4:34 pm

I have lost more than 55lbs this past year but still have a ways to go. I have finally broken the pattern which I had since the thanksgiving holidays of losing and then regaining the same 10lbs over and over again. I am solidly losing again and I can see my body changing shape again. Yay!

Perhaps I have a masochistic bent or something because this morning I thought, hmmm, let’s find out if I am still considered obese. Well….. I am!

I was curious how doctors calculate that fact. They do so via BMI. I learned about it on this website.

If I had wanted a short term weight loss solution I could have done the rigid 12step food program that I used to lose a ton of weight before, but it was actually one of the most unhealthiest times of my life (and I have had some unhealthy times, let me tell you.)

Losing the pregnancy weight (and then some) has been a journey to discover a healthy lifestyle so that I can model one for my daughter. I have been trying many different approached this past year and overall, have found success. Forty pounds to go!

Back to BMI, even though I was in the obese category, it didn’t make me feel like a loser (surprisingly). It just made me happy I have a plan to keep losing extra fat. It is another tool in my healthy living toolbox.

Drink your water early on in the day

In Random Thoughts, Uncategorized on March 18, 2013 at 3:52 pm

I know you know that drinking water helps you lose weight. It fills you up so you eat less. It hydrates you. It gives you more energy. It helps you think more clearly. It helps with stream-lined elimination processing (pooping). It helps wash out toxins. It helps the body distribute nutrients. I am sure you can find a host of other reasons and studies on the importance of drinking enough water and why.

On the app I am using to track my calories it has this handy water intake tracker as well. Before i started tracking my water I looked on a variety of websites to determine how much water I should be drinking. There is differing recommendations but it seems for my body weight, height and activity level (active) I should be drinking about 72oz. No problem, I thought! I am one of those bring-a-water-bottle-along types.

But after tracking my intake for more than a week I have learned that I only reach my goal if I start early on, in the beginning of the day. If I wait until mid-morning, my intake for the rest of the day is low. Who knows why, maybe I am sluggish from not having enough water so I don’t make the effort to drink more! But, since I feel remarkably better and my intake is much improved if I began the day with a glass of water, I thought I would pass this tidbit onto you.

Exercise for mental health, not weight loss

In Random Thoughts, Schmexercise, Uncategorized on March 17, 2013 at 5:30 pm

A friend visited a few months ago and she explained to me that she needs to exercise everyday for her mental health, not her physical health. Over the winter holidays she was traveling and visiting family and her exercise regime really suffered. She was surprised by how much inactivity bolstered depression and anxiety. This is anecdotal of course but there are tons of studies linking exercise with improved mental health (check out the mayo clinic, science daily, etc.). My friend frames her exercise routine as a must, as her daily medicine.

This outlook is pretty radical to me. I usually start exercising solely to lose weight. I do crazy things like run marathons and go on long back packing trips to be “able” to eat lots of food! If I exercise there must be a goal involved and be an all-encompassing time-intensive pursuit.

After my friend headed home I thought well, why not try to approach exercise for mental and physical health? I wanted to try a routine that was practical and something I could do with the baby. I tried dance classes at the gym but I didn’t like the baby care and with the driving and packing for the outing, it proved to be too much to do every day or even every few days. I loved the classes though and think when the baby gets older I will try to incorporate a couple a week into my routine.

On Facebook a friend posted rave reviews of the Couch to 5K app. It guides you through a run/walk, three day a week, regime culminating in you being able to run a 5K in about 8 weeks of training. I haven’t really run since running the NYC marathon…. in 2001!!!! I am also carrying around at least forty extra pounds. And I can do this! I highly recommend the app, and it is free.

Like the best of technology, it really makes exercising into a no-brainier. I put the baby in her stroller (and it isn’t a fancy jogger stroller FYI so don’t let not being able to afford one of those stop you) and head somewhere flat. Then I walk when the voice says walk and run when the voice says run. It is challenging for me because I haven’t been a runner in so long but it is doable and it always is over just when I think oh man I can’t do this any longer!

One of the best parts of using a program like this is I am not over-doing the exercise and burning out. Three times a week I can handle. I am on week five right now.

I also hike with a moms group once a week so I am exercising four out if seven days. This is pretty radical for someone who hasn’t exercised in years….

So have I experienced a boost in mental health? The truth is, I think so but can’t quite tell. What I have felt is increased energy. Why is it that something that takes up energy gives you more of it? I would love to know. I have also felt an increase in my libido which is definitely good for my mental health, not to mention my marriage!

There are definitely days when I don’t feel like doing the running, for sure. But something about saying to myself, this is non-negotiable, this is your mental medicine, really cuts through my excuse-making mental b.s.