Thursday, December 28, 2006
Unfortunately, I must admit that while I counted points last week, I evidently used too many flex points and gained 1.2 lbs. I'm now 0.2 lbs. away from 10%. It's not fun yo-yo-ing so I am working to lose the pound I gained. I've been to the gym twice already this week and I'm going to try to not use all my flex points. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
Now for a story. So I'm at dinner with my parents and the waiter says, before I've even ordered, "you look like someone famous". I'm like, "you're talking to me?" I mean I have no makeup on, a sweat shirt and jeans and my hair is in a ponytail. And he's like "yeah, the girl from 'The Facts of Life'". At this point I try to not roll my eyes when I say, "yeah, I know who you mean." And of course he's struggling with the character's name, and trying not to describe her, so I tell him, "Natalie." Of course, he has to pick the big girl on the show. Why couldn't it have been "Blair" or "Jo"! (Not like I look like either one of them.) I really don't look like Natalie either, but I am big. This isn't the first person who has told me I look like this actress. Another man told me this (20 lbs. ago which makes me feel really great about my loss). Do people just not understand that telling someone they look like an 80's celebrity doesn't count as a good thing if that actress is overweight? I like to pretend that I'm not overweight, so when someone holds up a mirror it is silently painful.
Tuesday, December 19, 2006
I got a little misty when I thought about the last few months. I truly feel like I have accomplished something. I've never tried to lose weight before. I've gone to the gym consistently before, but I have never really changed my eating habits or weighed myself on a regular basis. I had no idea what I weighed before I went to my first Weight Watchers meeting. I had been weighed at the doctor's office every year or so, but after I hit 200 lbs. I stopped listening to the numbers.
This has been such a great experience, and I feel so lucky to have this blogging community and be able to visit your blogs and see how well you are all doing and get inspired. And I love it when you visit me! :)
I have another goal coming soon, I'm 0.8 lbs. away from 200 lbs.! I never thought I get so excited about weighing 200 lbs., but I am. It means I can really do this, that its working and that I'm going to be able to sustain my weight loss. I don't think the next 60 lbs. are going to be easy, but if they are anything like the last 23 lbs., I'm sure its going to be an adventure I'm going to look back on fondly in the future.
Sunday, December 17, 2006
I'm going to try to go to the gym tomorrow to mitigate some of this damage. I knew I was making bad choices, but I just couldn't stop myself. I was uncomfortable at the party and I wanted something in my hand to hold. I should have asked for water. Next time. Next time.
The Christmas party was a mad house. My brother-in-law played Santa to about 150 kids ages 0-12. He is such a good guy.
Okay, it's time for me to edit my group paper and email it to my professor for her comments before it goes to the client. Wish me luck!
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
I had a really good day today. I turned in a group paper at 8am, then I had a client presentation from 2-4pm. It went really well. I didn't think it was going to, but the client was pleased, so that makes me happy. And I got my credit card bill and I spent $350 less than I expected last month! I wish all days were like today. But at the same time I'm sorta waiting for the other shoe to drop. I wish I wasn't like that, but I kinda am.
So, I calculated it and I just have to lose another 1.4 lbs. and I'll hit my first major goal of 10% of my original body weight. How cool is that?! I don't know if I'll manage to do it by next week, but that snazzy key chain they give you would make an awfully nice Christmas present. Whatever happens, it's nice to know the goal is in sight!
Friday, December 08, 2006
The other nice thing I found this week was cheek bones. I noticed them when I was in the bathroom combing my wet hair. I turned my face to the side and there they were! I mean I have cheek bones when I smile, but I haven't seen hide nor hair of them without smiling in months.
I have a confession to make. I don't like my driver's license picture. It was taken in February and I look terrible in it. I mean its embarrassing to show this picture when I get carded (yes, I still get carded at 33). I hate seeing it. For a few days recently I had turned it around so the back of it was visible through the clear plastic sleeve in my wallet. But I found that that made me more conscious of it. So I turned it back around. I shouldn't be embarrassed by the picture, but I am. I'm just waiting for someone to comment on it. I lied about my weight when they took the picture. I really didn't know what I weighed, but I could have easily guessed it was over 200. But I said 200 and that's what is on my license now. Oh to be down to 200! That's my 10% goal!
I lost 0.8 lbs. last week, so I'm down 17 lbs. total (I've added a little ticker because I was jealous of everyone else's! :) I'm happy with that considering all the beer I drank last Friday and the cheese and crackers I had on Sunday (snacks at the group meeting for school).
That's all for me. I better get to bed if I want to wake up before noon. Ahh, the life of a grad student.
Saturday, December 02, 2006
I've done a bunch of work for school tonight, so I am taking a break. But I have more to do. I have a group meeting tomorrow at 1pm that I have to prepare for. I'm not looking forward to it. Classes are done December 12th and all my papers and projects will be done by December 20th. I can't wait! I'm not doing anything Christmas-y, except decorating, until I go to my parents in Vegas at the end of the month. Maybe I'll listen to some Christmas music on Pandora <http://www.pandora.com/> while I prep for tomorrow's meeting. You've got to check out Pandora if you haven't already. It's this internet music radio station that plays songs based on your last selection. They have analyzed half a million songs over the past century and the algorithms search for like characteristics and play songs they think you'll like based on your initial selection. It's great!
Does anybody swim laps for exercise? I've been thinking about starting now that water aerobics is over. The next session won't start until the end of January. I love the idea. I just find it so monotonous. They have music playing under the water, which should help, but it is hard to hear it.
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
I'm nervous for Christmas. I am spending 2-1/2 weeks at my parents house. It only took two days for me to back slide into eating whatever I wanted at Thanksgiving (I was there Tuesday-Sunday). How am I going to hold up there for 17 days?! It was like I had no will power. Because it wasn't my regular routine I didn't make very good food choices. I am going to have to be really vigilant while I am there in Dec/Jan. I was thinking about not going to my Weight Watchers meetings while I'm out there because the local meeting made me pay (they didn't accept my Monthly Pass). I was thinking I could save the money and just weigh myself with my mom's scale. Now I'm thinking that it is imperative that I go to those weekly meetings. I think it will help keep me on track. That and making sure I count points. I did count points last week and it was awful to see how much I ate.
I should be enjoying my loss, but I'm just confused.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
It was interesting and a positive viewing experience. I learned to look for the words "enriched" and "hydrogenated" on food packages in my pantry and throw them out. It was also a very positive story. By the end of the show (taped over a 3 month period), everyone profiled had lost weight and/or inches around their stomachs. (But that felt a little unrealistic. There were the obligatory valleys everyone hit. I have to admit it was a little cliche, but satisfying nonetheless. I like a story with a happy ending.)
That was another thing I learned, that the size of your waist is supposedly a more important indicator of health than your weight. I believe they said that for men a healthy waist size was 35 inches and for women a healthy waist size is 32 inches. But watch the show to make sure. (In the interests of full disclosure I measured my waist and its 39 inches.)
If you are in the states, I recommend checking out the show. It's on tomorrow - November 19th - at 2:00pm on the Discovery Health Channel. You can also link to the Dr. Mehmet Oz fansite on Discovery Health's website to get more information about him and the show: http://health.discovery.com/fansites/droz/droz.html
Job Search Update
For those of you wondering about the progress of my job search, here it goes. I have applied for a part-time internet marketing position with a local company. I figure they'll let me work flexible hours since I'm a student. I also contacted the company I had a paid internship with this past summer. A number of interns made the transition into part-time work this fall. I foolishly didn't think I would have the time to work this fall. Well, I did and I missed that boat big time. The HR Director, who is a friend of mine, is looking into what they have available. Both of those jobs have offer the largest money earning potential - over $13/hour. If one of those two things doesn't pan out I am going to check out more things locally - like working at Curves (thanks Vickie for the idea!), Target, or temping with an agency in the city. I can't work at the university because I am already technically employed by them as a Graduate Assistant and I agreed not to work any other jobs when I took the position. (Shhh! Don't tell anyone. It will be our little secret.)
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
So, I have a different problem that I need advice on. I need to make money to pay off some credit card debt I've racked up living on student loans (which are never enough). I want to pay some of it off so that next spring, after I graduate, I won't look totally undesirable to a new apartment management company when I want to move. I can only really work from January - April. I wish I could work online, from my home, but I don't know of any jobs you can do remotely like that. I would teach college courses online, but I don't have my masters yet, so I'm not qualified. I will have classes 4 days a week at varying times of the day/evening next semester. And I might have to go out of town for job interviews at different times. I'm thinking about Blockbuster. It's right down the street from me and I think it would be minimal training, whereas Starbucks would be crazy training (who wants to learn how to make all those drinks!) I'm definitely qualified for a job in the marketing/advertising industry, but I just don't have the hours to devote to it during the week. Does anyone have any ideas besides Blockbuster? Do you even think Blockbuster is a good idea? Your advice is greatly appreciated.
Tuesday, November 07, 2006
So, there you have it. I have confessed. What made me fess up was my weigh-in today. I gained a pound last week. I think it was the combination of the grande non-fat etc. etc. drinks and the bag of Chipotle tortilla chips and side of guacamole I had. (Okay, so the tortilla chip addiction is not totally under control.) So my goal is to limit myself to only two more grande non-fat blah blah blahs this week (through and including next Monday). That will get me back to only 3 in one week. And I'm not going to get the chips at Chipotle this week. That's my mantra.
Oh, and if you read my "Should I Stay or Should I Go" post a few weeks back about running into someone I worked with this past summer at my Weight Watchers meeting, I have an update. I saw her again tonight, in passing. She was in the middle of a private conversation with someone so I didn't want to interrupt to say hello. And you know what, I feel fine about it. I'd prefer not to know anyone at my meetings, but this isn't so bad. I think it was the initial shock of seeing her that got to me. I think there's room enough for the both of us.
I have a big client presentation on Thursday. I'm hoping I can still make water aerobics that evening. I missed tonight because we had a group meeting to prep for the presentation. I also checked out the hours for lap swim at the gym and they are great. They are basically open from 6am-11pm M-F and they also have good hours on the weekend. My reward for myself for a tough week is to go swimming on Friday (I don't have any classes).
So, that's it for me. I hope you are all doing well.
(You can check the nutritional content of all Starbucks drinks and food at this website http://www.starbucks.com/retail/nutrition_info.asp. They even have a link to it on the top of their homepage, which I respect.)
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Good news! I got weighed at Weight Watchers tonight and I lost again last week! I have lost a total of 12.6 pounds since I started in mid/late August. I got a "5 pound" star at the meeting to put on my "5 pound" bookmark. I recorded my new weight on the WW website and discovered something - every 5 weeks I lose 5 or more pounds. I'd like my weight loss to be going faster, but its nice to see this pattern in order to make changes.
I'm Starting to Prune
Okay, so I've had three shallow water aerobics classes so far. I enjoy being in the water, but there are a few things I don't like about the classes. First, they are too easy. I was afraid to sign up for deep water because I wasn't sure if I could tread water the whole time. Now I'm regretting that decision. I think next time I'm going to try deep water. I'm a good swimmer, so I think I'll be okay. The other thing I don't like is the fact that a swim team practices in a pool right across the deck from our pool. Here are these perfectly fit 19 year old girls and guys and then there's me doing these exercises. I keep trying to tell myself not to be embarrassed. I'll be ready to start swimming laps again in a few months.
I hope you are all well. Happy Halloween my friends!
Sunday, October 22, 2006
Just Call Me Bridget
So, I didn't go out with my friends on Friday night. There were 6 of us girls that were planning to go out. Then someone had the bright idea to make it co-ed and invite all the husbands and boyfriends. The only problem with that idea is that I'm the only one who doesn't have a husband or a boyfriend. I didn't have the guts to say that I wanted it to stay all girls because I knew they wanted to invite the guys. I thought I could go through with it, but as the evening drew near I just couldn't bear the idea of hanging out with 5 couples. All I could imagine was Bridget Jones at the dinner party with all the couples trying to explain why she is still single. And I wouldn't have a Mark Darcy (or better yet, Colin Firth) in the group to come after me and tell me he liked me "just as I am". So, I lied and said I was feeling sick. It was a shame because I had been looking forward to night out with friends in the city.
I've been good about counting points all week - and all the good and the bad food choices. I have used up all my extra points. Actually, I am one over. But I am working hard to stay within my daily allotment of points.
I signed up for a water aerobics class. It's Tuesdays and Thursdays for 6 weeks. I may need to start going to the Wednesday Weight Watchers meeting because the class ends exactly 30 minutes before the meeting begins on Tuesdays and I don't think I can make it there that quickly. I'll let you know how the first class goes.
Campaign for Real Beauty
I went to an interesting lecture last week. It was by the Group Creative Director for Dove's Campaign for Real Beauty. She was very interesting. She mentioned a cool short video on their website that shows the time-elapsed footage of a photo shoot, from the model sitting down with no makeup to the photo being massively revised with something like Photoshop. Go to http://www.campaignforrealbeauty.com/ and check it out and check out the Dove Self-Esteem Fund.
Tuesday, October 17, 2006
So, to get myself back on the right track I went to the Weight Watchers website and recorded my points for the day, the points I earned from going to the gym today, and my past 6 weeks of weigh-ins. It made me feel better to see how many flex points I still have for the week. I'm nervous about Friday night. I'm going out with a big group of friends for drinks and dinner. I'm trying to plot what I'm going to order. Do you ever feel self-conscious when you order healthy food and you feel like people are expecting you to order something bad for you?
I wanted to share some helpful reminders I got from a bookmark I got at my WW meeting last week. It's called "Use the Tools" and its good thoughts to replace the negative ones we all have running through our minds:
- Winning Outcomes: "What do I want?"
- Empowering Beliefs: "I can and I'm worth it!"
- Anchoring: "Remember when!"
- Storyboarding: "What's my next step?"
- Mental Rehearsing: "Practice! Practice! Practice!"
- Motivating Strategy: "What's my reward?"
- Reframing: "What does that get me?"
- Positive Self-Talking: "I am what I repeat"
- Asserting: "I need you to ______ because ..."
- Switching: "I can see the new me!"
I hope everyone is having a great week. I also wanted to tell everyone that I'm having problems leaving messages on "non-beta" blogs. I switched to the beta version of Blogger and now I can't post to "non-beta" blogs. I wish Blogger would have told me this before I agreed to switch. So, I am thinking of you and hoping for the best for you!
Monday, October 16, 2006
1) Have some breathing room in the pants
2) Have the tank part of the sweater set cover more of my stomach
3) Be able to bend over and put nail polish on my own toes
4) Get a hair cut (I just put that one in there because I need one desperately. I think the last time I had my hair cut was January.)
I achieved 2 of the 4 goals. The pants were comfortable and I did get a haircut before the event. I didn't achieve #2 because I wore something different. (It ended up being a more casual wedding.) I didn't achieve #3 because I didn't try. I decided to wear closed toe shoes because it was going to be cold, so I didn't bother painting them a new color.
For some reason I had a horrible time. The wedding should have been fun. Nothing seemed to go wrong and everyone seemed laid back and in a good mood. I, however, was in a foul mood and basically tried to sit in the corner the entire time. For some reason I was overwhelmed with all my relatives being there. I also didn't know where I fit in. I didn't have a date, I didn't have any kids to look after, I wasn't friends with anyone. I tried to hang out outside with the smokers, but that didn't work so well because it was cold.
Basically I felt very obviously fat and single. I am always hyper-aware of my appearance at weddings, but this was different. Usually I am enjoying myself, so I forget about what I look like. That night all I could think of was what I looked like. I suppose I should say something like, "It doesn't matter what I looked like. All that matters is how the bride looked." But that wasn't true. My relatives told my sister how good she looked, but no one said anything to me. I was also hyper-aware of not eating the hors d'oeuvres and not taking too much from the buffet. The good thing about my bad mood was that it made me stop drinking. I figured I didn't need a lot of alcohol to make me feel worse, or do something I'd be embarrassed about later. (It wasn't much to give up though. I was drinking Miller Lite instead of the Yuengling I wanted.)
All I can say is that I am glad that night is over. I learned at my weigh-in last Tuesday that I gained 0.4 pounds. So all in all, last week wasn't a great week. Maybe I'll have some good news at my weigh-in on Tuesday. I'll let you know.
Sunday, October 08, 2006
I was talking with a group of fellow students this afternoon about popular culture. We were talking about how babies get the best features from their parents and celebrity babies are a perfect example of that - Liv Tyler is beautiful, but looks exactly like her father Steven Tyler who has, to put it politely, not aged well. This one guy in the conversation then says that Steven Tyler's other daughter looks like him too, but she "has a weight problem". (She also happens to be a model, but I'm not sure if that really matters to the story.) I came close to saying, "but there's nothing wrong with having a weight problem", but I chickened out.
Not two seconds later, the guy who made the comment asked me to talk to go talk with him in private (well, off to the side of everyone else, out of earshot). To set the scene, this guy is extremely blunt, bordering on rude because he has absolutely no filter. He is incredibly smart, and moderately funny, so he isn't ostracized for his rude comments. I wouldn't call him a friend, but I'd say I am on more friendly terms with him than some other people.
He proceeds to ask me if I was offended by the comment he made about the girl with the weight problem. He then admits there's no polite way to ask that question because he is basically saying I have a ... He doesn't actually say that I have a weight problem, but its implied. He then says he knows he's made comments like this in front of me two other times (He can remember the exact conversations, I can't.) and keeps wondering if he's offending me. I am exceptionally bad at telling people they have offended me. I said something like, yes, what you're saying is awkward, but I actually appreciate the fact that you even think about my feelings since people say insenstive things about weight in front of me all the time and never think twice about my feelings. I was being honest, but not completely honest.
We ended up getting into a larger discussion about whether or not I think I have a weight problem and if I even want to lose weight. (He kept asking me questions and I just couldn't manage to stop giving answers.) I told him I was trying to lose weight, but asked him to not mention it to anyone or in front of anyone because I wanted to keep it private because I don't want anyone to know I think there's something wrong with me.
It was one of the most awkward and bizarre conversations I've ever had. I certainly do not want to repeat it. On one hand I'm offended that he had the audacity to tell me to my face he thinks I'm overweight. But on the other hand I am overweight, and I know it, and at least he apologized for being insensitve, but by apologizing he was being insensitive. It's a vicious circle.
I just had to share and find out if anyone else has had a similiar experience.
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
Second, let me apologize to anyone who's stopped by recently and hasn't seen a new post. Unfortunately life got in the way of my blog - mom came to visit last week and then I got sick this week. Writing this post is like coming home. It's nice to be home.
Third, I have good news! I've lost 6.4 pounds on Weight Watchers in the past two weeks! I know, I'm shocked too! I'm happy, but I'm also nervous and a little uncomfortable with it. I wish it would have come slower. I feel this responsibility to keep it off and 6 pounds feels like a lot right now to keep off. They also said at my meeting that you should only lose 1-2 pounds per week and one week I lost 4 pounds. I have no idea how I did it. I didn't eat terribly well that week, but I did manage my portions. So, I'm just going to take it one day at a time, one meal at a time.
There was a girl, okay woman - she was probably in her late 20's - at the Weight Watchers meeting last night that made goal. She lost 55 pounds. How awesome is that! I didn't feel comfortable walking up to her afterwards, but I wanted to know how long it took and what it felt like. I am so impressed. It was such an inspiring story. I don't usually go to Thursday night meetings. I might go back just so I have another opportunity to talk with her.
My goal for this next week is to get back to journaling what I eat and to get to the gym. It's going to be a busy week, just like every other week (and like it is for everyone else), but I'm going to get to the gym at least one time Monday - Friday.
I'm going to reach my ultimate goal of losing 78 pounds. I might take the long way home, but I'll get there.
Sunday, September 17, 2006
I started Weight Watchers about four weeks ago and my weight has just fluctuated a few tenths of a pound. One week I'm up 0.4 pounds, the next I'm down 0.6 lbs. In the abstract I'm happy I haven't gained any sizable amount of weight, but in reality I'm really disappointed. I thought the effort I've been making would have made a difference. I guess I am going to have to start being more stringent about what I eat and how much I eat. It is definitely harder than I expected it to be. I keep getting hit in the head with realizations throughout this entire process. I realize losing weight is a major lifestyle change. I've been making some good food decisions, and some not so good decisions - as usual. I haven't exercised since Wednesday. It looks like I am going to have to be more diligent about it.
I'm worried I'm never going to lose weight and that I'm always going to look and feel like this. I applaud you all who have been losing and kept it off. You have accomplished something great.
Sunday, September 10, 2006
That's the first time since I moved here in August 2005. I planned to only ride the bike for 20 minutes, but I had three articles to read for class tomorrow night, so I rode for 40 minutes. It was a little awkward. My thighs brushed up against each other sometimes when I was pedaling. I thought I was going to feel uncomfortable when I got there an the only other person there was a thin blonde girl running on the treadmill. She actually ended up being nice (not that thin blonde people can't be nice, but you know what I mean). I think I had the bike on like the lowest resistance, but you gotta start somewhere.
I've come to the realization that losing weight is about a hundred big and little choices you make every day. When to eat, how much to eat, when to stop eating, when to go to sleep, whether or not to drink water, when to cook, what to order in a restaurant, whether or not to go to the gym, what to do at the gym, whether or not you should park at the end of the parking lot and walk a little farther to get to the store ... the list goes on and on.
It's amazing how much it takes over your life. I think I have been resistant to letting it engulf my life, but I am starting to give in. I'm also realizing just how long this process is going to take. I probably wouldn't admit this to too many people, but I think I am going to be prouder of the accomplishment of losing weight than I am of finishing grad school. I never thought I'd say that about losing weight, but I think I have come to the realization of just how hard its going to be. Here's to taking another first step - cheers! (insert your own favorite beverage here as a toast to what you've accomplished today)
Thursday, September 07, 2006
On a separate note, while I have been good about keeping track of what I eat I haven't been good about what I eat. So, I am asking for your help and inspiration. What do you do to prevent yourself from taking the easy way out and picking up something quick on the way home, from eating that second serving, from eating what you know you shouldn't. While I am learning about how bad some of the food I eat regularly is for me, I don't seem to have any willpower over the foods I already know are bad for me. Please share how you answer that voice in your head, and tell yourself it just isn't worth it. Thanks in advance!
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
So I did it, after two weeks and one false start, I finally got back to a Weight Watchers meeting.
I went to a different location and I liked the meeting leader better. It's funny that each group has a few stereotypical members - there always seems to be an older woman who has been around the block and lets everyone know by answering all the questions the meeting leader asks the crowd before anyone else can. I actually find it kind of endearing. It takes the pressure off of me to feel like I have to participate. I'm planning on going back next week.
So, I know you are all sitting on the edge of your seats, waiting with bated breath, wondering what the scale said. Okay, since you asked so nicely I'll tell you ... 224.2, I'm up .4 from 223.8 two weeks ago. Considering the fact that I didn't journal my food or count points for those two weeks, I'm perfectly fine with that number. I mean, I don't want to waste money by going and not losing. But for right now I need to make it a habit before I can focus on losing. And, I need to start exercising. I think that is going to be my goal for Saturday afternoon. So here's my pledge:
I pledge that I will ride the recumbent bike at the gym for 20 minutes on Saturday, 9/9.
I also think I am going to count points instead of trying to live within the confines of the core program. I have realized I just don't eat enough core food naturally to make it an easy transition. Yeah, counting points and keeping track of my food at myfooddiary.com is going to be a b*tch, but if I make it a habit I think I can stick to it.
So that's me in a nutshell. A roomy nutshell, but it'll get smaller. Take care!
Sunday, September 03, 2006
I went shopping yesterday with my sister. I thought it would be fun. Unfortunately I forgot that she's a size 0/2 or extra-small/small and has a job and I'm a size 18/20 and have no income because I'm a student. Needless to say it was not that much fun. I love my sister and I like window shopping, but its depressing when you can't try anything on because they don't have your size and you have to watch someone constantly go back for a smaller size. It has been this way my entire life, the only difference is that when we were younger I was a size 8. I can't believe I spent my time feeling fat back then. I can't believe I got mad at my sister back then. I wasted so much time.
I need to find things to do with my sister that don't involve clothing shopping or food. That cuts out about 99% of all social activities in America. Guess I'll just continue to sit on my couch alone and dream about food.
Friday, September 01, 2006
# 5 Eat food in public without feeling like people are saying, "of course she eats that way, look at her"
# 4 Wear a skirt without needing a girdle to prevent my thighs from rubbing together
# 3 Button my suit jacket
# 2 Buy clothes in a real store instead of needing to buy the bigger sizes online
# 1 Stop assuming the reason why a guy isn't interested is because of how much I weigh
I had another pretty bad week - long days, stress and no willpower. I did well Monday and Tuesday, but it went down hill on Wednesday. I'm going to try to get back on track this weekend. I have my second Weight Watchers meeting tomorrow morning. I don't have any illusions of having lost any weight. In fact, I'm curious to find out how much I've gained. I'll write again tomorrow with an update of how the meeting went.
Saturday, August 26, 2006
Unfortunately, I must admit that my first five days on Weight Watchers were a bust. I have not eaten this badly on a consistent basis in the past month and a half (excluding the night I "Fell off the Wagon". I had tortilla chips (evil!), I had McDonald's hamburgers (Sacrilege!), an Entenmanns' doughnut (!*@#!), I even had chili nachos (the shame!). What's more, I haven't been keeping track of it - not on myfooddiary.com and not in my Weight Watchers booklet.
It will come as no surprise that I've been crazy busy this week and that had a lot to do with the bad eating habits. I didn't have a lot of access to healthy foods and the one salad I bought to eat had a twig in it (!?!) and I had to return it. But in some ways the fact that I was busy was just an excuse. I could have made more of an effort. I didn't have to make the bad choices I did. I consider it self-sabotage.
Next week is going to be worse than last week (15 hour days Monday-Thursday). So, I am asking everyone for their advice and ideas. What do you do when you have a crazy schedule and you are running around and don't have the time or energy to cook? Do you prep and make food before hand? Do you cut yourself some slack and eat badly? What are your secrets?
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
I got there early, as did a few other people. I figured out that you get there half an hour early to get weighed, and you can either stay for the meeting or leave. I did notice that not one other person who weighed-in was wearing jeans besides me. (Thanks for the posts advising against that, but since jeans are the only thing I'm comfortable in these days, I'm stickin' with 'em.)
I must say that I was a bit confused about how the Flex Points work with the Core Plan, but I figure I'll read up on that in the information they gave me and online. I asked a ton of questions during my orientation session after the meeting (I was the only new person), but I decided to hold some back because the leader stayed 45 minutes extra for me because the meeting ran over.
The meeting leader was energetic and nice, but I didn't really connect with her sense of humor. The other people in attendance at the meeting didn't seem all that warm and fuzzy. The only person who introduced herself to me was the receptionist who weighed me and gave me my initial packet of stuff. I must say that I feel more of a connection with all of you bloggers out there - whether you leave posts on my blog, or I'm reading and posting on yours - than I felt during this meeting.
The other thing that worries me is points vs. calories. I have been religiously filling out my online food journal for the past month. I like it, it works for me. I don't feel great about adding in an additional step of counting Flex Points for the crazy, strict Core Plan. I also like having the option of eating anything I want as long as I stay in my calorie/fat/carbohydrates/protein percentages for the day on myfooddiary.com. It seems like I have to cut out EVERYTHING if I go to the Core Plan (No Cherrios? That's just crazy talk.)
I still like the idea of having to show up somewhere every week and be accountable for my weight loss. (I also abhor the idea of buying my own scale. I'd be weighing myself morning, noon and night if I had my own.) I guess the point of WW is that I can make the plan my own. I actually can't continue to go to the same meeting on Monday nights because I have a night class this semester at the same time. So, I am looking for other meetings in my area at more convenient times. Maybe I'll feel more at home at another meeting with a different group of people and leader.
I feel apprehension as I start this new journey, but I'm still taking a step, albeit tentative, in the right direction.
Saturday, August 19, 2006
The meeting starts at 6:30pm, but they say to get there 30 minutes early. I wonder, should I bring a notebook to take notes? What happens at these meetings? Will I get weighed on my first day? Is it bad that I won't be able to go to this exact meeting again because I will have Monday night classes during the fall semester?
If you have any Weight Watchers knowledge or experience, let me know! I'll tell you how the meeting went next week!
Thursday, August 17, 2006
I can't remember the last time I was weighed. I've been guessing at my weight. I know I've been over 200 pounds for years (I still remember the day the doctor told me. I walked around the block crying because I couldn't bear to go back to work. I was so heartbroken. I didn't see it coming. But I can't remember the date. Was it 5 years ago? 3? Was it Spring or Winter? I can't remember.) I also know I have been gaining weight and that some of the clothes I bought last year (only the expensive ones, like suits, of course) no longer fit me. In fact, over the past year I have even gone up a jean size - to 20 - at The Gap. (Surprisingly this event did not bring me to tears, probably because I have been conscious of my weight lately and I saw this coming.) Based on all the data I have gathered I have been guessing that I weigh 250. (Secretly I have been envisioning the scale saying 263. For some mysteriously significant reason, no doubt.) So, wasn't I surprised when I marched onto the scale on Monday and it said ... 220?!@? Just like that, I "lost" 30 lbs.
What should have taken me the better part of 6 months just happened in a split second. I've longed to lose all my weight overnight. But I didn't really lose anything. And I didn't feel any different after I saw 220 than I did before. My clothes don't feel looser. I don't feel more brazen, or more cocky or more confident. I haven't felt a quickness in my step or found it easier to smile. I have felt none of the things you feel when you embrace the rush of weight loss success.
What this whole episode really taught me is that It's Not About the Numbers! It's about how you feel. So, I am going to just keep putting one foot in front of the other and keep counting calories, keep trying to motivate myself to exercise, keep encouraging myself to join Weight Watchers "soon". And I'm going to let you all know when I actually feel different. Until then, I'm not about the numbers.
Sunday, August 13, 2006
We got to the bar, ordered pitchers of beer and water, and started looking at the menu. There weren't any healthy options. We were deciding between pizza and mozzarella sticks - we ended up getting both. The pizza wasn't very good, so I only had two pieces. (Why did I have the second slice?) The mozzarella sticks were good, so I had three. We were there for hours. More pitchers of beer followed, highlighted with jello shots. I felt like a kid again. It was fun. I didn't feel that fat.
Around 2am we decided we were done with the now crowded bar and went to a diner. At 2am, the last thing I wanted was a salad at a sketchy diner. I ended up getting a burger and fries. Not the best I've ever had, but it certainly hit the spot.
Yesterday I was doing well, even though I was out with different friends. But then they wanted to get ice cream after dinner and I rewarded myself by getting a double scoop cone. I kept telling myself that I hadn't eaten that much today, so the calories would balance out. Yeah, right.
Now its Sunday and I'm afraid of recording what I ate on Friday and Saturday at myfooddiary.com. I know the calorie count is going to be high. I think I'm more worried about just putting it somewhere permanent, where I'll be reminded of it, where I can't push it out of my mind. I can rationalize that nights like that are a rarity. But still, no one was forcing me to eat that food. Making good food choices seems so hard when you are surrounded by other people who aren't concerned about the same things. I'm disappointed in myself. The guilt is awful. I was doing so well and now I wonder if I'll ever be able to handle social situations. Now I don't want to go to the pool today because I am so self-conscious, something that never bothered me before (well, there's a new group of guys who just moved into the complex, and that might have something to do with it, but that's for another post).
So, I'm just sitting in my living room, watching TV in my pajamas and staring out the window at a beautiful day I'm not enjoying because I feel fat.
Wednesday, August 09, 2006
You, of course, know the first question I asked myself when I opened up the envelope ... WHAT AM I GOING TO WEAR?!?!
I have thought about it and I really have only three options:
1) Buy something new
2) Wear my old stand-by outfit (that may not fit anymore)
3) Don't go
Let's see... #3 is out because, regardless what I look like, or what I wear, this is going to be a fun wedding. Capital F-U-N. So, that leaves me with options #1 and #2. I don't have a lot of money and I just can't bear the idea of going shopping and having to cope with what size I may or may not be, so option #1 is out. That leaves us with option #2: the good ole stand-by. Guess what color it is? I'll give you one clue: it's black. I'll give you another clue: it's separates, because God knows I haven't been able to fit into a dress for quite some time (my breasts are too big, my waist is too small - in relation to everything else - my thighs are too big, my shoulders are too broad, my arms are too big ... the list goes on and on). It's actually quite nice, that is if I hadn't been wearing it for the last 7 years to every semi-formal or formal event I've had. The top is a silk twin set with tasteful flat sequins scattered on the edges. The bottom is a pair of black pants (I grew out of the skirt I originally bought to go with the twin set). And the shoes, of course, are black strappy high heeled sandals.
I wore this outfit to an event for my graduate school in April and it was passable. I say passable because the tank part of the sweater set would show my belly button if I raised my arms up too high. The pants fit, but they were tight. It was difficult to give myself a pedicure with my extra pudge around the middle.
As of tomorrow, August 10th, I have 65 days until the wedding (9 weeks starting Monday, August 14th). So here are my goals:
1) Have some breathing room in the pants
2) Have the tank part of the sweater set cover more of my stomach
3) Be able to bend over and put nail polish on my own toes
4) Get a hair cut (I just put that one in there because I need one desperately. I think the last time I had my hair cut was January.)
I think its doable. I don't think my goals are too grand. I've been doing well on my "diet" (I don't like calling it a diet. I prefer "healthy eating plan"). Now I just have to start exercising on a regular basis.
I'll keep you posted on how its going.
Sunday, August 06, 2006
According to http://fatfighterblogs.com, "if your BMI is over 40: This indicates an individual suffering from extreme obesity, and is in a very unhealthy condition. The excess body fat will put the individual at risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, gall bladder disease and some cancers. It is definitely time to change to a healthy diet and undertake a fitness program."
It is really scary to read those words, but some how its easier hearing it from a website than from an insensitive doctor who doesn't understand what being overweight is all about. (That's a whole other story for another post.) I guess its easier because I didn't have to look anyone in the eyes to hear the news.
I don't feel extremely obese. I mean I don't fit through small spaces any more (must turn sideways) and I have to catch my breath after I climb the three flights of stairs to my apartment, but I just thought I was overweight. "Extremely obese" is a whole new ballgame.
I haven't been to the doctor in the past few years, mainly to avoid having to look anyone in the eyes. In the past my blood pressure and cholesterol have been fine, even though my weight has been climbing. I guess its time to hold my head up high and march into a new doctor's office and demand some respect, along with some test results.
I was telling my sister my weight loss goal (52 pounds in 52 weeks) and then I told her how much I'd need to lose in order to be at the top of the range for my height - 115 pounds. That really got to her. That's how much she weighs. I need to lose an entire person in order to be healthy. What I want to know is how did I gain this entire person? How did I not notice this was happening?
I have a feeling that being extremely obese is going to start to define me. I'm going to start hearing that in my head when I read about the "fattening of America", I'm going to think about it when my friend complains about wanting to lose her 10 lbs. of baby weight so she can be "skinny again". I've always felt different, now I have a title for it. Instead of being known as "Miss Congeniality" or "Vice President", I'll have a satin sash made with the words "Extremely Obese" spelled out in fancy cursive lettering with sequins.
Friday, August 04, 2006
Lately I have been feeling very visible and it is a bit unnerving. Doors are being opened for me. People are allowing me to cut in front of them in line. Boys are asking me for my phone number. They are asking me to dance. It feels strange.
I know what I look like. I've seen enough photographic proof lately to scar any slightly insecure person. I'm the biggest girl in the room. I check. I admit it. When I walk into a room, or walk past people on the street, I am constantly checking to see if I'm bigger or smaller than they are. For the past year or so I am invariably the bigger person. Every once in a while I see someone bigger and I say to myself - I won't get that big. But I'm sure just as I'm thinking that someone behind me is looking at my ass and saying the same thing to themselves.
But at the same time as I have been hyper-aware of what I look like, I have been getting all this polite, respectful attention from men. It seems incongruous to me. I have been thinner and I have felt more invisible than I do now. Is it because I no longer live in New York - the one place I feel both at home and like an outcast because it is filled with the vapid and the vacuous? Is it because I am surrounded by more mature men? Which I doubt because I go to school with 27-year olds who have created 'hot lists' of the women in our class. (And please don't say I have been attracting those kind of men - the kind that 'like' fat women - or I will have to do you personal bodily harm.)
This kind of attention makes me forget what I look like, if for just a moment. I don't feel fat when it is happening. And then I catch a glimpse of myself and I remember my place in the world. In the back, behind the crowd, out of sight, not too proud, part of the scenery. That's where I tell myself I belong. That's where I feel comfortable. That's where I feel safe. Attention just casts a strong light that I'm not ready to handle for more than a fleeting moment. And thank God they are only fleeting moments.
Sunday, July 30, 2006
I have also seen that I eat better during the week than on the weekend. I have more structure during the week, so that makes sense. I also have less access to food during the week - unless you could the evil vending machine at work that is home to the sinister cinnamon brown sugar Pop Tarts.
I should start putting together my baggies of goodness - little snack bags of carrots, Cherrios and pretzel sticks. They account for my breakfast and snacks during the day at work. Last week was the first time I did it and it seemed to work well. I only had the evil Pop Tarts once. I was supposed to make a tuna casserole tonight for lunches this week, but I of course got lazy. I still have one lunch left over from last week that I can eat tomorrow. Think I'll actually make the casserole tomorrow night? Personally, I have my doubts, but we'll see.
Thursday, July 27, 2006
Today sucked. I saw someone I worked with 10 years ago at a happy hour, but I walked right past her because I didn't think she'd recognize me with all the weight I've gained. I just didn't want to have to wait and watch it process across her face who I was. She, of course, looks like she lost weight. Later I thought about going up to her and saying hello, but she had already left. Just as well. I never really liked her anyway. Even so, I feel like a failure. Ten years later and look what I've become. Is it going to take me 10 more years to take it all off?
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
I promise to write more about my inner turmoil surrounding my weight loss soon!
Tales from the Scale by Erin J. Shea is a book I found containing exactly what I was looking for online. It is a collection of blogs by seven female writers in book form, the most famous of whom is Erin Shea who 'penned' the blog "Lose the Buddha". The writers share their insights and feelings on topics ranging from "'The Twinkie Defense' - how they gained weight in the first place, 'The Inner Fat Girl' - the little voice that longs for an identity beyond the body and 'I've Always Liked Big Girls' - Sex and the Fat Woman: experiences with sex, dating, and feeling sexy beyond a size six." It made me laugh out loud and almost made me cry (I'm a tough cookie) and really made me realize that I belong, in spirit, to a group of strong, courageous women who are struggling with the same issues I am. I highly recommend it, so much so, that I'm going to try to put a link to it on the left-hand side of this blog.
Myfooddiary.com - As I wrote, I was looking for online journals by other women trying to lose weight and I found something unexpected - a website that tracks your food, exercise and measurements and gives you cool charts and graphs. I'm sure I'm the last person to find this site and I realize it isn't the only site out there doing this, but I'm new to this whole diet and nutrition thing. I thought it was so cool that I agreed to plunk down $9 bucks a month on a student's budget to give it a try. (There's no minimum number of months required and you can cancel at any time, so what's there to lose?) It has pages and pages of endorsements by satisfied customers and almost as many press mentions in publications like New York Magazine and The Wall Street Journal - two of my favorite sources. So, instead of sharing all my numbers with you, I'll be keeping track of them on this website. I'm going to try to put a link to it on the left as well.
I'm very excited about these two "discoveries". It makes me feel less lonely in the world of weight loss. It's tough when you don't have someone to share how you feel about your body and your desire to change it on a day-to-day basis. I look in the mirror when I'm in the bathroom at work and wonder, how did I get this way? It's like I am seeing myself for the first time. The pockets on my pants gape and won't lay flat. The seams stretch on my pants. My shirts ride up in the front and the back. (But, I comfort myself with the fact that my ankles look F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S!) How did this happen? How did I let this happen? Where was I when this was happening? How do I change it? How long will it take? It feels like it happened without me being conscious of it, so why can't I lose all the weight without having to be so vigilant? I gained all this weight over the span of years, but I want to take it off in a year. Is that possible? I'm trying to crunch the numbers, but the numbers don't tell me how hard it's going to be to stop ordering take out and to put that third beer back in the fridge and to not make a late night run to the grocery store for a pint of vanilla Ben & Jerry's. What is going to take the place of food in my life? What's going to celebrate my successes with me and comfort me in my failures? What is going to help me handle my stress and let me kick back and relax? I'll leave you with this parting thought - How do you break bread with someone when you can't eat the bread anymore?
Friday, July 21, 2006
I've been thinking about going to a Weight Watchers meeting. This is a big step for me. I always thought those things were ridiculous for someone who'd managed to graduate 7th grade - why count points, when you can count calories? (Sorry to offend.) I can count calories just fine, I even have a book that includes the calories for just about every kind of food in the United States. I just choose not to count them. I guess counting isn't really the whole point. There must be more to it. I mean I've known tons of people over the years who have gone to Weight Watchers - some small, some big. And I've never understood Weight Watchers groups at work. Isn't it just awful to admit to everyone you work with your weakness? I mean if you don't admit you're on a diet, maybe no one notices your overweight?
That's my favorite . . . When my friends who are 5 feet 2 and weigh 100 pounds soaking wet complain about gaining 5 pounds during the first year of our grad school program. Doesn't it ever occur to them that they shouldn't complain about such trivial things in front of someone MY SIZE! But my mom will always say, or some well meaning friend, "They said that because they don't see you as fat." Yeah, right. I think sometimes it's just because they don't really see me at all. Don't get me wrong, everyone has their own troubles and sometimes it means you're a size 4 and you're worried about 5 pounds. I can respect that on one level. Body image is a bitch for everyone. But on another level it just hurts.