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Week 6: amp up fruit and veggie intake

In The Program, Uncategorized on July 25, 2014 at 1:35 pm

Moving towards a super healthy diet, this week is all about monitoring fruit and veggie intake. In other words, making sure I am getting enough of the healthy stuff my body needs. As always I am taking baby steps to make sure this diet/lifestyle and these wellness goals are sustainable. No quick fixes here! No crash and burn diets! No overwhelming, time consuming, obsessive plans. One weekly goal at a time means I am building a healthy, smart, tailor-made, reasonable, sustainable weightloss program to say bye-bye to the pregnancy (and then some) weight forever.

At this point maybe I should rename the blog “losing that toddler weight” since I have yo-yoed so much during my daughter’s toddlerhood. I have lost more than half of the pregnancy weight but never have lost more than two thirds of it because for the last year I have been gaining and losing the same 10-15lbs over and over again. This yoyo pattern makes sense to me since I have been under intense stress as I care for my mom going through hospice, but still, enough already!!! Yoyoing is frustrating aesthetically and also is super unhealthy for my poor body trying to cope with all the extreme measures I was placing on it. Time to care for my body in a healthy way and not have us be adversaries. Thank goodness this latest approach to healthy weight loss has been working. The past six weeks of “easy does it” changes are adding up to success. My clothes are looser! Just as importantly, I am hitting all my daily and weekly goals and that feels so good.

Anyways, this week, the way I am figuring out my goals for daily fruit and veggie intake is from the US government’s guidelines. In lieu of going to the doctor and getting her input, this seems like a fairly reasonable source. Hopefully there aren’t too many lobbyists influencing the guidelines lol! I am finding the
US government’s website very easy to use. To check the chart for how many vegetables you should consume based on age and gender click here . For fruit click here.

For me I should have a goal of 2.5 cups of veggies per day and 1.5 cups of fruit. I probably hit these goals half the time I would say, so I am excited to amp up my intake and reap the benefits of better nutrition. Take some time to explore the whole website in general because it has some great info that hopefully is backed by lots of science. For example, it is interesting to note on the the veggie chart that it shows you should shoot for particular quantities of various subgroups. I bet I don’t get 5.5 cups of red and orange veggies a week.

Have a great, healthy, reasonable week!

Review of my plan:
Week 1: yoga 2x per week at least
Week 2: 8 glasses of water a day
Week 3: no eating after dinner
Week 4: one sweet treat per week
Week 5: switch from sugar to a healthier sweetner
Week 6: proper fruit & veggie intake

Week 4: One Dessert Per Week

In Uncategorized on July 18, 2014 at 3:12 pm

As stressors in life increased coupled with chronic sleep deprivation over the past six months I reached more and more for artificial boosts: caffeine and sugar. My emotional eating historically has not been with sweets but with cereals and pastas. But the need for immediate “energy” this year brought on a candy and other sweets habits. I want to be realistic and not ban sweets all together because I really don’t want to live feeling like I have a bunch of rules just asking to be rebelled against. But the multiple sweets per day habit must go!

The first few days of this new habit proved surprisingly tough, but by Thursday (I start habits on Sundays) I had made it through the week and still haven’t had my treat yet. I am really hopeful that this habit is sustainable and will lead to real weight loss.

The habit I have broken twice is the no eating after dinner habit. Twice in the middle of the night I have been awakened to take care of the toddler or my bedridden mother and have had bowls of cereal, justifying it in the wee hours because it was a “new day,” ie, past midnight so not technically after dinner. Maybe the habit needs to be renamed from “no eating after dinner” to “no eating between dinner and breakfast?”

Review of my plan:
Week 1: yoga 2x per week at least
Week 2: 8 glasses of water a day
Week 3: no eating after dinner
Week 4: one sweet treat per week

Week 3: No Eating After Dinner

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2014 at 11:43 am

I find that i can be “good” with my eating choices all day but by the time the toddler is in bed, the bedridden mother is settled in and the chores are all done for the day, I want a snack! I want to collapse on the sofa and watch tv or check email and eat cereal. Now I know my body and I am not one of those people who take a few hours to wake up and want to eat breakfast. Nope, I have always been an early morning breakfast eater and a daytime eater. It has only been in the last few years that I have developed the late night craving routine. It’s time to break it! Now some people because of their body rhythms may need an evening snack to stay balanced and have proper caloric intake. Not me. Nighttime eating for me is almost always for emotional comfort and/or physical exhaustion, not for nutritional sustenance. If you are like me, this week, do whatever you have to do to stop being a nighttime snacker: close the kitchen door, brush your teeth or even go to bed early. Note this is the first week we are actually altering food intake so you may experience some internal resistance. Don’t give in and snack! All these baby steps are going to add up to a very healthy you in 52 weeks or less! Have a great week!

Review of my plan:
Week 1: yoga 2x per week at least
Week 2: 8 glasses of water a day
Week 3: no eating after dinner

Week 2: eight cups of water a day

In Uncategorized on July 6, 2014 at 2:38 pm

There are all sorts of health benefits to drinking eight glasses of water a day. Knock yourself out googling them! In terms of my weight loss 52 week plan I chose this focus for week 2 because I find I often eat when I am actually thirsty. I used a free app to assist with this goal, MyWater, which I highly recommend.

The week went well. I was surprised to see how helpful charting my water intake was. I think of myself as someone who drinks a lot of water. In fact I definitely wasn’t getting 8 glasses a day.

I am happy to report that I stuck to week one’s goal of two yoga classes a week. I also thought a lot about what goals I am going to set in the next few weeks – all of which will be totally reasonable, healthy and doable. This (manageability) is especially key as I walk through this difficult time in my personal life. Caring for my mother as she good through hospice while caring for my toddler daughter is very challenging and a crash diet is a recipe for failure and added stress. This 52 week program allows me to take care of my own health in a healthy way while having the energy and strength to take care of others.

Week 1: Yoga Twice Weekly (at least)

In Uncategorized on June 29, 2014 at 11:12 am

For my first healthy habit that should contribute to sustainable and steady weight loss I am going to commit to yoga at least two times a week. This past week I have attended three classes and my body feels really great. I am attending classes that are not rigorous (titled restorative yoga, yoga for everybody, etc). If you don’t have access to in-person classes I highly recommend the free yoga website grokker.com. There are other free instruction options on YouTube or check out (in the US) your public television station listings for yoga shows like Wai Lana yoga.

I love the way yoga makes me feel: all stretched out and relatively de stressed. The more connected I feel to my body and the lower my stress level, the better able I will be to make healthy eating choices and conquer the last third of this baby weight. Namaste!

It’s been a year!

In Uncategorized on June 28, 2014 at 11:03 pm

It has been nearly a year since my last post. I am at least ten pounds lighter then I was the last time I wrote, having lost about 60+ pounds overall, but I still have about 30 to go. Sheesh! This baby weight loss thang is going sooooooo slowly. Then again, not everyone gains 99lbs in 9 months (the newborn was only 6lbs8oz at birth)!

So, how to take the final 30 off? I need a gentle method as I am going through a tough personal time (caring for my mother as she goes through hospice) so extreme dieting and exercise isn’t sustainable. However, I am willing and am eager to make small changes that will add up big time.

I came up with a gimmick that I think will work for me; I call it Fabulous in Fifty-two. There are 52 weeks in a year so each week I will start a new healthy habit or make a healthy change. The cumulative effort should really add up to a 30lb weight loss in a year (what I have been averaging anyways) and the best part is that it is a custom plan for me, my body and my current life circumstances. I am really looking forward to this year and continuing the steady decline towards a healthy weight!

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!

Amping It Up

In Exercise, The Program, Uncategorized on July 12, 2013 at 9:45 pm

The last few weeks I have been consuming way too much snack food. It isn’t that I have gone over my calorie allotment, on most days I don’t. But I have felt stuck just when I only have a third of the extra weight left to lose. I have lost more than two-thirds of my weight gain!! But this last thirty or so pounds feels elusive and daunting. Plus, my skin isn’t looking great. And, my energy feels low even though I am in great shape. Low energy is mot acceptable because my toddler requires all the energy I can muster!!

I have decided that for the next few weeks I am going to abstain from sugar, flour and wheat. In the past doing so has been my golden ticket for weight loss. I don’t want to live my life obsessed with “good” and “bad” foods which this diet kicks up for me. So, this is a temporary program. The timing is good: no birthdays, holidays or other special occasions in the next few weeks that might trip me up. I hope after a few weeks of this “clean” eating that I will feel better and the weight loss will be kick started again. Wish me luck!

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!