Friday, December 10, 2010

One stride at a time...

Well, another week is passing by. My first week on PointsPlus totally rocked. I excitedly tracked and exercised all week and, even after enjoying two munchy nights out with friends (beer and wine included), I lost 4.8lbs! What a jump start!

This week has been a lot slower. I'm still tracking although the initial excitement has waned slightly. I think that mostly has to do with stress at work. We're in our year end and the recession is finally hitting us for the first time in two years. And, as a program manager, I am stressed out.

As a result, the work schedule has also been a little wacky this week, which has negatively affected exercise. So far I only have 2 workouts in; although I have planned in bicycling for Saturday + Sunday + Monday along with some weights. Today I did "The Shred" and had my butt whupped! I'm also going to take the dog out later on today for a walk at the Arboretum which will be nice.

I received my MRI results this week. While I have no tears or fractures, the posterior side of my right knee is showing some cartilage degeneration and resulting chronic inflammation. I've been told no more running for at least 2 months, which puts me well though January. And even then it's dependent on inflammation coming down. So the only intervals I can do are either walking or on the bike. I'm not really supposed to be doing jump rope or jumping jacks either (anything that puts more impact on the knee, so I'm modifying The Shred aerobic workout sections a bit).

It's mixed news. I'm disappointed about the running. I did some walk/jog intervals over the past two weeks and was excited to be back on the path to running again. But, I'm glad it's not a surgical issue. And with continuing PT, regular icing, glucosame and vitamin D3, I'll be on the mend. Guess I'll put my sights forward to a 2011 bike race instead. Any recommendations?

On a different note, I had a breakthrough this morning in my thinking about food. My partner and I are having her two sisters over tonight. Originally I thought that we were going to cook tonight, but she had it in mind that we were carrying on a Fri night Chinese food tradition. I agreed that Chinese food was fine yesterday, but this morning I began to panick. We had a night out on Wednesday with wine and cheese, I had a Board meeting with desserts and wine last night, and Saturday we have friends coming into town and we're heading out for dinner at a local Mediterranean place (again, with wine). Now, I could not drink the wine, I know. But it's one of the things that I really enjoy. Saturday there will be no dessert as this restaurant has better entrees than desserts. Still, all I could think was, "I've not been exercising, I've been eating out, and now Chinese food?!" And then I thought, "I don't have to have it." Which is a little sad but empowering. And then I realised, "I can still have some steamed veggie dumplings." Which is awesome and empowering! They are my favorite Chinese food item and one is 1 PointsPlus. So 6 steamed veggie dumplings (6pts) + 1 cup of my roasted vegetable + tofu curry (4pts) will make up my very satisfying and happy 10 PointsPlus dinner! I can take or leave the lo mein/fried rice so that's no worry and will just have to be mindful to avoid the scallion pancakes (which I also love, but one 2.25 oz pancake is 7PointsPlus!!!)

So I have a plan and I feel very happy with myself for this mental enlightenment and behavioral compromise. Hurrah! And Saturday, I'll just be mindful all day, exercise and then enjoy dinner out. And, Sunday I'll do the same AND cook a vegetable rich dinner to be enjoyed in.

So watch this space to see how the PointsPlus Week 2 weigh-in goes on Monday!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Woohoo! 4.8lbs loss this week! Bring on Points Plus!!! :)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

In Starbucks, random guy calls me "girl w the awesome hair". Walk out feeling confident + hot. In Banana Republic dressing room 5min. Walk out feeling fat + sad

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Feels good to move...and not move.

Went to physical therapy tonight for my knee. I'm a few visits in so know the exercises; it was rough tonight. I struggled with my reps at the weights I used earlier this week. I cried on the table. Granted, my work day was emotionally undoing today, so I'm sure that contributed to physical tiredness also.

Still, I'd planned on a short cycle tonight post-PT and it didn't happen.

But, I'm okay with that.

This week is my second week back in on regular exercise post-injury and doctor's orders to lay off my knee for over 3 months. This week I've walk/jogged for 30minutes (Mon), cycled for 40 mins > 12mph (Tues), and did a combo 15 min run/walk with a 20 min > 12mph cycle (Weds). I'm doing well.

So tonight for me, health and fitness and exercise means not moving (at least after physical therapy) and taking a day to rest and heal my self and my body. The cycle will be there smiling at me tomorrow morning at 7am I'm sure. And I'll be ready for that 40 minute release of tension and building of strength, self, and fitness.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Starting the week off right with 30mins walk/jog intervals followed by PT for the knee :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Monday, September 20, 2010

Came to WW despite my fears: lost 1lb. It's a new beginning. I'm upping the ante next week.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Pain is...

Pain is...

1. sitting on my ass for a week (aka, substituting stationary biking +swimming for running) because I'm in recovery from PMF, + IT band + plantar fascitis pain (the last is worse pain although does not cause my knee to buckle)

2. not believing that cycling + lap swimming can live up to running (i.e. feeling that I am less of a person for investing in recovery vs. my initial Nike+ half-marathon training program)

3. weighing oneself at 5pm after a week on vacation in Georgia...with still 3 days of vacation to go (i.e., hoping that if I return a little rounder that my wife will see me as... "round and fleshy" in the way of Julia's Brazilian lover in the Eat, Pray, Love. For more weight-sensitive commentary on the film see: Judgment of Paris)

4. hearing the confessions of my mum's hip pain and equating it to my recent PMF/IT band/plantar fascitis... pain, wine, ibuprofen and all

5. promising to help ease my mum's pain by sharing my (little) knowledge of hip strengthening + stretching exercises

6. later, praying it will work out.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Tired of feeling tired, round, + disappointed in myself. It's time to step up. I am starting the Nike Womens hf marathon training. First run a 4-miler tomorrow

Monday, August 16, 2010

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Ran the Alvin Sproul 10k this morning. Hip pai started after 2.5mi but knee didn't kick in til 5mi. Progress! Solid 11min/mi avg. Doable :) Wonderful crowd!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Weighing the consequences

For the past few weeks I've been struggling with the desire to write a real post ("real" being defined as 1. more than a mobile update and 2. an honest account of the current state of affairs) while feeling self-protective.

Some days I wonder if this blog is a good idea. I'm not a bare-my-soul to strangers type of gal by nature. I'm generally preemptively-protective, concerned about my reputation and the capacity of others to use my experiences against me, more likely to reveal less about myself and ask more about the other person. Yet, I started this blog two years ago and while my motivations may have changed slightly over the last two years, I find myself resonating with one of my original intentions: to share my process with weight so that I could create accountability for myself. Over time, I have also come to value this space as one that has spurred commentary in others. Interestingly, most folks who have read this blog and felt personally touched have emailed/messaged me individually instead of commenting on the blog. Few people have signed up as readers though I've been told that they're reading this. This lends me to think about why and leads me to identify a discovered motivation for writing this blog AND one of the main reasons I'm finding it difficult to write a "real" post: shame.

We all know that weight-related issues, eating disorders, exercise patterns, and weight itself are common conversations, especially for women. Our magazines are filled with commentary on weight-loss plans to "drop pounds fast!" and exercise routines to "blast belly fat" and "create lean lines". We are less desirable as new hires if we are overweight. If we are obese and happen to pick up a candy bar at the grocery store checkout aisle or drive-thru the Dairy Queen for a cone, we risk derisive commentary for strangers. Twisted faces and loud whispers about our weight, our size, our choices. Or, as I experiences this past April when picking out a couple of desserts from the Roche Bros bakery counter, a passive-aggressive tirade from a middle-aged white man on the addictive effects of sugar. Really. He must have thought that I don't listen to NPR.

There's a lot of shame attached to weight. You could say that weight weighs heavily on many of us. Not all. I have met some amazing fat-positive people, and I admire many of them and oft wonder how they manage to hold their framework in the face of such anti-fat social commentary. But for the rest of us we're held in check by shame.

I've often wondered why weight is difficult for me. I'm accomplished in other areas. Scholastically I've succeeded in achieving two Master-level degrees. I anticipate a PhD someday. I am accomplished in my work. I create strong relationships. I have a solid partnership with my wife. Why can't I crack this weight thing? No matter how I frame this issue as a "process" and convince myself that it's okay to tread slowly through weight-loss and maintenance, I too feel shamed. Shamed that today, I'm 10lbs heavier than I was at the end of May before my wedding. Shamed, that 18 months after joining WW the last time, I've only lost 25lbs (mainly because of my 10lb weight gain. I was down to 35 lbs lost). Shamed that I've not figured this out yet. Shamed that I need to admit that, still.

But, this shame is also one of my found motivations for writing this blog. I want to break down shame for others by sharing my story. I am sad that most folks do not comment and instead message me privately. I'm sad that I don't have many public followers (though this may also be because my posts are not that interesting!). But, for those few I know are reading and the ones that have been in touch and are struggling with this issue too, I want to break that silence open. And, I suppose that if that means I shame myself in the process a bit then so be in. Perhaps I can reframe the shaming consequence as a lesson in humility.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Think I'm going to have to see a physical therapist. Really difficult run today. 3.5 miles with tear-worthy pain by the end. This knee is making me really sad.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Diagnose my R knee pain: 1.Intermittent. Doesn't hurt every run 2. Ache begins @ front of kneecap. 3. Radiates to R hip reflexor 4. Right achilles tightens ??

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Knees, chiropractors, car crashes and cupcakes

What a lot to catch up on.

I'm glad I ran today. I made it to 4.6 miles, which is a blessing as over the past couple of months I've been experiencing crippling knee pain when running. And, thanks to my wonderful chiropractor, I may have a solution: shoes.

Now, I was fitted for my running shoes at a reputed running store here in Boston. They fit lovely at first try, but after 3 weeks of foot-time I was concerned that they weren't as comfy as my last pair. Too late to return them I plodded along from mid-April through mid-May blaming achy legs and numb feet on my badly out-of-alignment back. And, with a wedding our wedding in May my mileage decreased anyway (and I had about 3 weeks off).

So forward to mid-June. Wedding over. Honeymoon over. And I'm 7lbs heavier and back on the pavement. I've started going to a chiropractor to correct my back and the arm numbness and dizziness I've been experiencing progressively since Jan 2010 is disappearing. The aches in my back are lessening. The knots are releasing. And my knee is killing me. My right knee.

As my back is getting fixed and my hips are aligned I find that I can't run without intense knee pain past 1.5miles. Not great at all. So I switch to a run-walk combination thinking that my newly even hips are affecting my gait and I just need to ease into it. No matter if I'm walking or running it's painful after 1.5miles. And, though each visit I leave the chiropractor with flying colors on my strength test (left and right sides) when I return after a few days off I'm still consistently failing my strength tests on my right leg despite the lessened back pain/new equilibrium.

And then my chiropractor asks me to bring in my shoes. My new shoes that are only 3 months old and have seen only 9 weeks of running or so. No more than 130 miles. We talk about my issues and my chiropractor adjusts my back. We run strength tests on both legs. Passed with flying colors. He asks me to put on my work sandals and walk back and forth across the waiting room floor. We do strength tests. I pass with flying colors again. He asks me to put on my running shoes and walk back and forth across the waiting room floor (once). We do strength tests and he watches my gait. I fail all the right leg strength tests. I feel like crying.

And so he looks at my shoes. First, he points out that the right one looks like the heel is sloping in toward the left shoe. Next, he tests their shocks by tapping on the back of the heel. The left shoes bounces slightly back/forth in response. The right jumps around back/forth and left/right. Aha. He says. Structural issues with the shoe.

So I go back to said well reputed running store to be fitted again because I trust their fittings. One bum pair of shoes does not turn me off from being a customer. I'm fitted and tell my story as I'm there. I get 15% off the new shoes (nice!).

So, I'm now 2 weeks and 4 runs into the new pair. The first two runs were a little shaky as I got used to the new fit and lacing. My left knee and right knee both hurt a little after the first 2 runs, but eased after icing. Although after run 2 I did feel significant pain the next day. These last two runs (yesterday- 2.3miles and today- 4.6miles) were golden. No pain. None at all. I've proactively iced the right knee just in case. But no ibuprofen has been necessary. No wincing has occurred. It feels like a miracle. I've not run over 4miles since May (the Charles River 7.5miler was cancelled; and I didn't attend the 5k but ran on the treadmill instead). This gives me hope for the Sproul 10k in August.

So, was it the shoes? I'm thinking so and am hoping today signals future success and pain-free running. Watch this space for updates.

With Knees and chiropractors down, time to touch on the car crashes and cupcakes.

This short of it is that I was in a wreck this afternoon. My car suffered significant front end damage so now is at the body shop in JP and I am car-less. Thankfully we're headed down Cape for a few days and I have rental coverage for work next week if necessary. But really? My car.... it's my work lifeline.

Part of me wants it to be totaled so I can get that dog-accessible vehicle our household needs. The other part of me hopes that its fixable and all covered so I don't have to find down payment monies. So crossed fingers.

I'm typing glibly about the whole affair now; mainly because it's been a couple of hours and the claims process has started. But also because I made the conscious decision to self-soothe with a Sugar cupcake and a glass of red wine. It's likely bad to self-soothe with food and alcohol, but I was definitely not up for another run and too shaky for my bike. So I opted for food and Facebook (uploading wedding photos) and am feeling pulled together enough to pack for our trip.

I'll dive into the ramifications of food-soothing on another post I'm sure. For now, I don't want to go too deep with it, but note that it is an effective coping method under significant distress. At least for me. And by Friday I'll be back to running with my non-gimpy knee!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Catching up.

Phew. How time has flown by although it feels like life went on hold for a little while there. Though I'm sure that's because my head, heart, and hands were held hostage by my (now) wife and my wedding.

The wedding was lovely and after we scurried away to Paris for 10 days before returning to a long weekend in Maine. I'm now (technically) back at work (I'm out ill with an ear infection today and awaiting doctor care) and trying to find an even keel.

Health and wellness went out the window before the wedding. Apart from completing the Marblehead 5k and the occasional run, I was focused only on not gaining more than a pound or two so I could fit in the dress! These women who lose weight before their weddings naturally are an enigma to me. Under stress I eat and drink; no weight lost for me unless under the duress of Weight Watchers.

My WW membership also expired before I went out of town so I have to sign up again. I thought about not doing so and taking the summer off, but after my last 3 days at home I'm convinced that I have a wee bit of a sugar addiction that needs corralling. Subtext: my eating habits are veering on out-of-control and I don't have the willpower to go it alone. So I'm re-upping the membership next Monday night and will be back on the train (I think a good 8lbs heavier than from my last post thanks to wedding cake and Paris). But, as I've mentioned on this site a few times now, this is a process for me. I didn't become overweight overnight and I'm damn sure that I wouldn't be happy with a life in which wedding cake and treats were banned completely. I just need some structure.

It's funny how bulimia continues to rear it's ugly head for me. Don't get me wrong, I'm not bingeing or purging in the way of my past-self or active bulimia. But, the inability to listen to my body and respond appropriately to hunger or stress or boredome is an eerily familiar situation. My ear is sore, so I ate cake today. I was stressed on Monday, so I had chocolate. I was tired and hungry due to missing a proper dinner last night, so I ate cheese and ice-cream. Not the best choices, but at least I'm identifying that there's a potential problem there. And I'm not too ashamed to admit it and ask for help. Thank you WW and wifey for that.

It's not been all bad. I've been eating blanaced breakfasts and lunches. I've found I love lowfat Greek yoghurt thanks to a Parisian brunch we enjoyed. And, it's rasberry season so I'm ready to enjoy lots of sweet fruit + tangy yoghurt treats.

I did lift on Monday and ran today. My mini-Me practically jumped off my screen when recording my mileage; it's been so long she was perfecting paddleball. It was slow going after 3 weeks off, but I'm starting at least. (Though the 7.5 miler is next Sunday and I may have to run-walk it, which is disappointing). Talking about races, here's where it stands now:

Completed:
March 14, Somerville Ras 5k
April 11, Doyles 5 miler
May 15, Marblehead Beach to Beach 5k: I broke the 10min/mile record with a 9:54 avg pace!!!

Upcoming:
June 27, New Charles River Run 7.5 miler
Aug 15, Alvin Sproul Samoset 10k
Sept 16, Somerville Mardis Gras 4.2miler
Sept ??, Waltham 5k

So I'm taking July off because I may end up doing a lot of treadmill workouts (I'm not heat friendly), but am keeping myself on course with a few races dotted about. So we'll see. There's also a new workout plan I've started for 10k training that has the potential to carry over into half-marathon training. If I decide to go that route the long-run training would begin this fall (October-ish) when it's cooled down a bit. Watch this space.

Okay, off to doc's office for official diagnosis and, hopefully, meds. Running is so much easier when you're in balance!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Time is flying by and so am I...

So perhaps not flying by, but since the last time I blogged I've flown down 3.2 more pounds to 160.8lbs now. It's 0.8lb/wk average and I'm okay with it. Soon to bust through the 160lb mark into the 150s.

Even better than the weight loss is the real flying (or running). So far the 2010 race schedule includes:

Completed:
March 14, Somerville Ras 5k
April 11, Doyles 5 miler

Upcoming:
May 15, Marblehead Beach to Beach 5k
June 27, New Charles River Run 7.5 miler
July TBD
Aug, Alvin Sproul Samoset 10k
Sept 16, Somerville Mardis Gras 4.2 miler

Potential:
Sept, Tufts 10k for Women
Oct, Down + Dirty Duathalon and Trail Run

It's exciting to have a race schedule. I have lots of thoughts about this, but have to go to bed so I can teach (and run) tomorrow without collapsing. So this is it for now.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Recipe yumminess

Just made WW Roasted Tomato Enchiladas for dinner. They're in the oven and smell absolutely fantastic!

Imagine, tofu, black beans and roasted corn (my addition) wrapped up inside whole wheat tortillas and topped with a chunky green chile-tomato sauce. Oh Mexi-veggie yumminess.

Let's hope they taste as good as they smell!!!

I call it compromise

I've just spent about 30mins trawling around the Weight Watchers website message boards. It's interesting to read so many comments from folks who are trying to figure out what they "can" or "should" eat.

I too have those days when I'm thinking in should and shouldn'ts. I should save money and cook at home. I shouldn't get take-out. I should wait to save my points for a weekend splurge. I shouldn't splurge at all. Should. Shouldn't Carrots. Chocolate.

I think it's about compromise. I've recently experienced the most wacky food exchanges. My temporary distaste for eggs led me to eat whole-wheat tortillas with fat-free re-fried beans and Trader Joe's peach salsa for breakfast. And, I've loved it. Those tortillas keep my full and give me energy.

This afternoon, hungry 45minutes after a low-cal toast snack, I heated a serving of Trader Joe's meatless meatballs with a little tomato sauce and 1/2oz bread for "mopping up". Perfect. I'm happy, full, and not stressed about lasting until dinner in 90 minutes. As a "snack" it's a weird choice, but great choice.

Some days I need to snack and so reach for Smart pop 1pt kettlecorn popcorn and 1oz chocolate chips. Tonight, in celebration of the good weather, Heather and I will treat ourselves to ice-cream from JPLicks. I'm already looking forward to my sugar-free fat-free soft serve with St. Paddy's Day green sprinkles. Yum! 2pts of happy (like WW ice cream treats but on a cone and green!)

I call it compromise. I'm going to enjoy a couple of glasses of wine on Friday night with friends and take-out on Saturday night. To prepare, I'll watch my points all other days and option for high protein, high fiber foods.

I took Mon and today as "rest days" because after a 5am wake-up and 7-hours of teaching high schoolers about dating violence, I'm wiped. So I ran yesterday and I'll run tomorrow and Sunday. Friday, I'll WATP and lift. I'll hike on Saturday. I'll also lift on Sunday.

It's got to be a balance. And not of "good" and "bad" or "should" and "shouldn't" but just of give and take. Compromise.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Lessons in self-love

Well, I'm officially bustin' though it; 1.6lbs off this week. That's 32lbs total since Jan 2009, 84.6total since Jan 2005. I have officially lost a small child's worth of weight. How big do 5th + 6th graders get these days? I think I've lost me a 6th grader.

Before I get into the self-love, me-me-me land babble, let me say Yum! I'm dessert-ing on a WW Chocolate Fudge Brownie premium ice cream cup. 2pts of pure heaven. I don't know what chemicals they use to get this stuff to taste so good and, really, I don't care. It's fantastic. If you're ever PMS-ing for something sweet and are on WW, pick up a pack (or two) of this ice-cream (there's also chocolate chip cookie dough and mint chip to enjoy).

So, back to self-lovin'. I'm not embarrassed to admit that I gave myself a praise-talk on the way home in the car from WW tonight. To clarify, I missed my regular Monday meeting so picked up a Tuesday closer to work, and I met my Leader, Arlene's, leader, Sherry. Fancy that. I still love Arlene- she's brilliant. But, Sherry is simply lovely. So it's 6:15pm and I'm stuck in traffic and realising that I've lost a small child and that while it's taken over 4 years (and I'm still going), I am a WW rockstar. Really. I started this program first as a child. I continued as a teen. And then as a young adult. And this is the first damn time, these past 4 years, that I've done it right. It's not a race. It's a journey. It's about enjoying life and myself and, while I do get stressed about the journey at times (especially the weigh-ins), I am making WW about me for the first time.

See, it's always been about the food. How much I could eat of it. How much I could get away with. Or hide. Or how restricted I was from it. Or how hard I was working for it. But, it's about more than that now. It is definitely about food; portion control, healthy choices, nutrition. But, when I dig down deep now, it's not just about the food and my (in)ability to control it. It's about me. It's about running. And hiking. And eating chocolate (or WW chocolate ice cream cups!). It's about enjoying a glass of wine as much as I enjoy walking my dog. Not more than. It's about challenging myself to test fitness limits. It's about getting a runner's high (yes, it's happening!). It's about being honest with myself. It's about looking in the mirror on "fat days" and reminding myself that I'm beautiful. It's about learning to love these stretch marks. And curves. And muscles. And bumps. It's about balancing my work life out with writing. It's about leaving the office at lunch for a run. It's about saying no to those things that take away from me. It's saying yes to me.

Yes. To. Me.

And because I'm finally learning this, I spent 2 minutes taping myself on my Blackberry voice notes recorder. No. Not crazy. Because I know that there are hard days. That there are depressed days. That there are second-guess myself days. That at some point I'll forget how far I've come for a moment, or hour, and that I might need reminded. And, I know that while praise form family and friends lifts me up and sustains me, I have to be the loudest voice praising myself. So I taped myself and labeled the note "I rock". So when I'm having that bad day I'll be able to hear myself, saying to myself, "You are f'ing amazing. I am so proud of you. I am proud of me."

And that, my friends, is the biggest gift I've given myself (apart from losing that 6th grader) for a long, long time.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Time to unwind from work

Yup, just finished working. This week is going to be the death of me. And while I need to go to bed terribly, I want to share my WW success because I'm damn proud of myself.

This week I earned 24 activity points, comprised of 3 runs, 1- 2hour hike, and a WATP workout with weights.

I distributed points differently this week; eating over my points every day by adding 3-7 weekly points. It was a hungry week. I also ate 2 of my earned activity points.

And....drumroll please...I lost 3.2lbs at weigh-in. Hell yeah!!! While I may not make my original goal by the wedding, I still weigh less that when I bought my wedding dress last year so no worries about it fitting.

So bring on this week. I've already worked one 12.5hour day and there's at least 2 more 10+ hour days to follow, plus a weekend half-day. Ick. I'm gonna be toast my Saturday night. But, am still going to try to get in the workouts as I know they make me feel better.

So, now off to bed. Have a 6:30am run to do!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Woot!

I'm back... or rather my Nike running account + mini is! Thank you Ashley for hooking me up with a new sensor. It's confirmed- I love graphing my runs :) Nerd, nerd nerd....

Monday, March 1, 2010

Thank you Universe...and Heather...and Mum + Dad + Chris...and Emily...and Carlye...and Arlene...and...and...and...

Blog of thanks.

Thank you Heather. You are a motivator. A comforter. An encourager. A reminder ("How many points is this???"). A supporter. Thank you for all the little things like coffee in bed, and bigger things like coffee on a Sunday morning with the paper and a walked dog, and the even bigger things like "You're beautiful...and sexy" when I've put on 3 lbs AND "Way to go" after working out, and the biggest things, "When's your rest day?" and "You can do this- you already are" and "I love you." Thank you.

Thank you Mum + Dad + Chris. You encourage me every week. You've seen me in all my rough places and you're still cheering me out of them. Thank you for letting me call or text and gloat about losing weight or running a race. Thank you for telling me I'm pretty...and that I'd still be your daughter (or sister) even if I wasn't. Thank you.

Thank you Emily for your facebook post today praising and encouraging me in a total "hell yeah me" way :) And thanks for all of your encouragement throughout these years. Not just in weight loss, but in getting through relationships, and school, and friendships. You're a fantastic woman and friend. Thank you.

Thank you Carlye for all of your virtual-support. Your blog comments always buoy me up and make me smile. It's been years of knowing you with years of time and space in between, and I appreciate your continued uplifting words. Thank you.

Arlene. There's no reason you'll ever read this blog as you don't know it exists. But, thank you for being the most funny, motivating, authentic Weight Watcher leader I have ever taken class with (and I've been through at least 5 different leaders). Your stories and jokes make all the words of wisdom I've been told throughout the years of meetings take on real meaning. You have a gift. And my Monday nights, well they wouldn't be as fun without you (and my fellow WW fat-camp group therapy participants!). Thank you.

Thank you Universe. I have been blessed to get through this disease (and I use that word purposefully as I keep battling it) many many times. From my overweight childhood, to WW, to an overweight adolescence, to WW and bulimia and skinny HS, to overweight late-years in college and bulimia, to WW and recovery.... to consistent loss through thyroid surgery and treatment....and still WW. But happier. Accepting of my "disease" of overeating and overweight. Accepting of my label of recovering bulimic. Accepting of my tendency to eat under stress or happiness or [insert emotion here]. Accepting (most days) of the length of time this will take and my capacity to go the distance. It's been over 16 years since I attended my first WW meeting when I was a pre-teen in England. It's been one hell of a journey so far. (I think I've even got Odysseus beat). Thank you Universe for giving me the chance to get back on my horse (or feet) and for keeping me here to work it out and chart the course.

And for the record... I scored a 2.8lb loss this week. Thank you me; for setting the challenge and sticking to it. You rock.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Hold on tight cuz it's gonna be wilder than any 8 second ride...

Week 1 Challenge over and complete! For those who have no clue what I'm referencing, on WW.com this week I joined the 30-minute challenge. The premise: exercise at-least 30minutes every day. Done. 7 days in a row: 4 runs, 2 circuit training sessions, and 1 WATP + weights session. I've also taken the dog for walks and soccer sessions all week (but haven't counted those minutes because they feel like every day, not exercise).

And I feel great.

Really, I do. No aches and pains (although I can feel my worked muscles). No exhaustion (though by this time at night this week I've been ready for bed). No annoyance or frustration. I'm just uber proud of myself. I earned 28 activity points this week. WW would LOVE people to earn 24. I challenged myself. I made a promise and kept it.

It's also encouraged me to track opints and my eating habits. I've needed to balance my food intake and take into account timing, type (carbs vs protein). It's resulted in a very even-keeled week even with Fri night take-out and Sat night dinner-out.

So, we'll see what the scale says tomorrow. I went up 3lbs last week and I'm damn sure I've taken some of that off this week. Yes, my motivation this week was to beat the scale. To kick WW behind. To prove that I can.

I have 4 weeks until my first wedding dress fitting. I have 12 weeks until my wedding. And I want to be done with weekly WW weigh-ins by then. So, I've weight to lose and weights to lift. And I'm going to do it one day and one challenge at a time.

So for next week? Challenge 30-mins a day to be continued. Starting with tomorrow's run in the am. So off to bed now :)

Friday, February 26, 2010

Temporary reprieve?

I ate an egg this morning. In fact, I craved an egg this morning. Heading downstairs for a treadmill run I passed Heather cooking up her breakfast. It smelt and looked lovely- egg- yum. So, post run I fixed a hearty breakfast of potato + egg with a side of soysage. I felt okay while eating it though conscious of the texture. And a little nauseous immediately after (though that may have been because I ate too quickly). But now I'm fine.

So, finished Day 5 in a row of workouts. Hell yeah. WW I am definitely kicking your behind this week. And my own.

Ok...time to work. I totally wish I worked a 4-day week. By Friday I have no motivation to do aught but play :)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Rainy mornings


Rainy mornings with 10am starts at work are my favorite especially when my lil' shepherd pupy is sleepy. This morning it's pouring outside. I overslept til 7am and now am sitting drinking coffee in bed. I'll then don my heavy rain gear and walk the pup (who is sleeping on the end of the bed as I type) before coming back in to tackle a C25k run. I'll stil be able to shower, prep breakfast and get to work by 10am.

Love it: sleeping in, hand delivered coffee and chill time, workout, and food. What coudl be better?

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Food...combination?

The most awkward food combinations occur at 9:30pm when you're on WW, have had to miss dinner to due some unforeseen circumstance (your tire blows up, you lock your keys to the car in the office, you are beset by a random shopping spree...or you just are working late again and forget to pack your dinner soup), and you have 7points to eat. Like me, tonight.

5 Morningstar Buffalo wings + 1/2 bagel= 7 point I-shouldn't-be-eating-this-late dinner.

Quick and plentiful. Fabulous. Also foods I would normally avoid on program because of the high point content per low volume of food. Perfect solution. I am not, however, going to bed sexy. Oh no... because no amount of teeth brushing is going to rid me of hte buffalo-everything bagel-garlic-onion combo that's going on. But hell, it's a weeknight, I have to get up early, and I'm damn tired. Who cares?

PS. WW, I kicked your point-recording behind today. Go me. :)
PPS. I busted my point-recording behind circuit training this morning. Go me x2. :)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Weigh-in was horrendous... but I wasn't

Missed 2 weeks of Weight Watchers but returned tonight dutifully to weigh-in. Let's just say it was terrible and I wanted to cry. I've been up and down since October and while, over the long-term, I'm staying at a stable weight, in the moment sometimes it feels horrible.

Especially because:
1. I've been running
2. We went hiking this weekend for 2 hours
3. I also did over 2 hours of xc-skiing this weekend
4. I ran this morning

But I know there have been some flaws. I'm eating too much processed, sodium-filled food. I'm not drinking enough water. I'm saving too many points for evenings (just under 1/2 my allotted daily intake) and weekends.

But I didn't cry. And, when I went to the grocery store directly after meeting to do the week's shopping, I didn't buy chocolate or cake. Even better, it didn't cross my mind to do so. I just thought- that's it. It's time to do it right: track, eat filling foods, cut out the seltzer + diet coke, and exercise.

So, weigh-in was horrendous, but I wasn't. I came home and made a healthy dinner. Have packed all my meals and snacks for tomorrow, counted the points, and am ready to go (with 3 points to flex as a safety).

Bring it on WW.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What comes first: the chicken or the vegetarian?

I am having my first vegetarian crisis.

No. I'm not jonesing for a juicy black and blue burger, cooked to medium pink perfection. And while memories of sizzlin' summer bbq still tickle my cilia, I do not wish to tear off strips from smoked baby-back ribs. I'm not desirous of bangers and mash...or chips. No want for thinly sliced steak n' cheese.

No, I'm not falling off the veggie wagon. Rather, I feel that I'm becoming a leading member of the caravan.

It started last fall around September. All summer long I enjoyed shrimp and scallops. Grilled and served straight up. Sauteed in garlic and olive oil. Boiled in spicy jambalaya. Stuffed in plump ravioli. I enjoyed these sea creatures all summer long. No pain. No guilt. Just low-point protein satisfaction. And then the fall came and on a trip to Vermont for work I visited a local restaurant renowned for it's fine seafood. I ordered a shrimp and scallop pasta and was delighted to be served a large bowl with jumbo shrimp and golf-ball sized scallops. I dug in with gusto, but retreated after 1 shrimp and 1 scallop. I thought perhaps they were too large. Too meaty. I was confused. I blamed it on root vegetable season and hibernation.

Not to be foiled, when my mother visited in early November I signed up for another shrimp pasta. Ravioli. And what do you know, when ground and spiced, mixed with ricotta and hidden in ravioli, shrimp is unidentifiable. I made it through the dish.

Heartened, I determined to take on shrimp again at Thanksgiving. Shrimp ring appetizer with cocktail sauce. I dove in, grabbed a mini-shrimp smaller than the first nub of my pinkie finger and popped it in my mouth

I regretted it immediately, dove for my wine glass, and washed away the nausea with a good swig of Cabernet sauvignon. I haven't touched a tail since. Or a scallop.

I've been okay with my lack of seafood until now. Until this week.

This week, when siting down to eat breakfast- potatoes and egg (over-easy) I found myself thinking of baby chickens. Baby chickens. And me about to dig into a perfectly over-easy egg yolk. Being the staunch Brit I am, I dug in, chewed and willed myself not to think about fluffy yellow baby chickens. I made it through the egg.

This past Monday I found myself once again at the mercy of baby chicken imagery when offered a baked egg for breakfast by a dear friend (and Fine Cooking aficionado). Again, my staunch British side (and well-bred politeness) led me to close my eyes, swallow and....enjoy-ish. Thankfully they were hard-baked, and so reminded my less of baby chickens. This morning, as I pondered what to eat post-run for breakfast I once again was stuck in baby chicken mode.

So I had baked potato and baked beans. Not potato and egg. I ate supper for breakfast.

I'm not sure what's going on. I didn't become vegetarian because I'm an animal-loving softie. I like leather bags and shoes. I love cheese and milk. I love[d?] eggs. I became vegetarian nearly 3 years ago purely for reasons of health and ease post-cancer and new girlfriend (a veggie of 10+years who LOVES to cook). No other reason. So I'm having trouble understanding my recent distaste for seafood and eggs AND the live-animal imagery that is plaguing me when I try to eat either.

So what comes first: the chicken or the vegetarian? [Sadly?] in this case I think it's both. The chicken gets to have it's egg and the vegetarian, well, she gets to enjoy tofu-scrambles.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Where to start?

I'm home alone (an unusual situation for my current living situation) and enjoying a bach (aka "bachelor") night. Thus far "bach night" has consisted of shopping for 2hours (H&M I love you), a Purple Cactus tofu teryiaki wrap, red wine, and half a Mike's chocolate mousse cannoli (yum). I've also been watching Sex and the City for 90minutes now. I promise, this is a great bach night for me. I've been desperate for a night alone.

But, it's been interesting noting my thoughts/emotions throughout today and tonight.

Today was difficult. I was hungry, so I ate. I enjoyed everything I ate, but felt very non-WW. Non-points and a little guilty. Not great.

Then I went shipping. I drove from work in the burbs to downtown. Found parking and then found H&M. And then spent 1 hour and 45minutes shopping. Hurrah H&M. I felt sexy before I tried on anything and then, as I tried on dress after dress and shirt after shirt, I just felt sexier. I don't know if it was the decreasing number on the tag or my ass in the 3-way mirrors but man... it was good. But it made me realise that despite a difficult day eating: 1) I am doing well at WW, 2) I am 80lbs lighter than I was in 2004, 3) I am the same size I was in high school, 4) I can run better than I did in high school, 5) I'm beautiful (thank you Heather...and Peggy...for reminding me this week).

Still, after 5 episodes of Sex in the City including episodes concerning self-esteem/body image, sex, smoking (cigarettes), I feel myself identifying with lots of parts of the show. Between the (current) self-doubts and the (past) smoking addiction I wonder about my journey. Granted, it is a journey and I am riding it. Most days I'm positive, but I feel like I've set myself up. I want to be a certain weight/size by April. The wedding is in May and now, though I started WW in 2005, ended in 2006 and began again in 2009, and am 80lbs lighter, my journey feels different now. There's a deadline. A dress. A honeymoon in Paris. Should I be sexier? Thinner? Seems so as I've set myself up for that end- to reach my initial goal weight by the end of April 2010. And I wonder if I'm setting myself up by wanting this deadline.

I'm not sure how I think about this but I'm working through it. I'm running a race in March (5k/3.2miler) and then another in April (5miler). After that I'm not sure. But, I need to run and also ad on some yoga or zumba classes... something that's fun, exercise and social.

PS- though I'm enjoying the Jo-night, I ran into a friend earlier this evening who mentioned she was hanging out with 2 other friends tonight for dinner. I felt left out. Silly huh? But then I texted another friend about if she was in-state or out-of-state tonight and no response. So I wonder how much work I need to do...with myself so that I don't revert to negative behaviors when I'm alone, and with my friends so I'm more integrated. I've always wanted to be the person up for a coffee or dinner or a drink...and that was reached out to as much as I reach out. I need to work on that, for me.