Dec 31, 2009

A Numbers Post

I'm worn out right now. I have spent my day trying to prepare for the coming of 2010 (both the festivities to come tonight and tomorrow, and the whole year coming after that), physically and I suppose emotionally. Anyway, mostly I 've been trying to plan my day, calorie-wise, and make it a good day. I know I'll be drinking at least 4 Yuenglings tonight and a glass of champagne, so I had to prepare... I'm tired, so this will be a post of lists and numbers.

My food for today:
  • Oat Bran Hot Cereal w/1 Splenda packet, cinnamon, and 1/3 of a Stretch Island Fruit Co grape leather cut up in it (wanted to change up the normal yogurt/grapenuts/blueberries routine)
  • Coffee with International Delight (6oz coffee, 1T Int'l D)
  • Lean Cuisine Grilled Chicken Primavera (sought out lowest calorie LC in the freezer, 220 calories)
  • remaining 2/3's of Stretch Island Fruit Co grape leather
[would have had a mango here, but realized I have poison-ivy-esque "mango lip syndrome" (yes, I get this) from previous 2 mangoes this week... laying off for a few days]
and I haven't had these things yet, but they are in my caloriecount database, already planned for:
  • Bryan's famous homemade chicken pot pie (entered all ingredients and got a calorie count: 489/serving)
  • Bryan's famous accompanying cheese biscuit atop pot pie
  • and then in the "snack" category
  • 4 Yuenglings (full calorie, just can't buy Yuengling Light... yet)
  • 1 glass champagne

I will probably end up throwing something else down the gullet this evening, but that's okay. This stuff adds up to 1,882 calories. It'll be fine, because...

I had an AMAZING workout today on the elliptical trainer!
My Stats for today:

12:34 minute mile to start (15 seconds better than my previous best)
Did 3.02 miles in the first 40 minutes (13.2 minute mile average)
then 0.32 miles in 5 minutes to cool down
total of 45 minutes and 3.34 miles
according to caloriecount's database, ellipticalling at "moderate effort" for 45 minutes at my weight burned 765 calories.

Now, I know that an elliptical trainer is not running, but elliptical-wise, did I just do a 5k, or did I just do a 5k? YES I DID. And a lot of that time, I was going fast enough to be running. Yeah. That's right. I did.

I'm going to go have a Yuengling now. Happy 2009, everybody, and bring on 2010, in which I will reach my healthiest point ever!

Dec 28, 2009

Doubts and Solutions

Okay, so I'm feeling a little panicked lately. Sure, it's been Christmas, and sure I'm expected to make mistakes once in awhile, but I'm starting to be afraid that I'm not doing good enough. For the last two months I've been averaging two pounds lost per month, and that's just not going to cut it. I'm teetering on a fence between being happy with results that I'm getting and just letting this whole thing fall by the wayside. I am not comfortable being on that fence. It's like when you're on a bike and you slow down too much... yeah, sure you're still moving, but you're right at that point where you're about to fall over because you're going so slow. I realize that I need to make some changes to get off of this fence, to pedal swiftly on the correct side of it.

First, I am re-assessing my daily calorie goals. My current goal has been 1500 calories consumed per day, and this was based on the fact that it was a big change for me to begin with. I had been eating upwards of 3 to 4 thousand calories per day, maybe more some days, and 1500 was a big step down from that. I've noticed that a lot of women lost weight eating around 1200 calories per day... I asked today what my calories/day should be if I want to be 185 pounds by the beginning of August, and it told me 1358, so I'm going with that. I'm going to try hard to start actually meeting this goal more days than not. After all, every day cannot be a special occasion.

Second, I'm fully committing myself to weighing what I eat. I want to know that I am actually consuming the amount of food that I report on my calorie database to have consumed. None of this "that felt like about 400 calories" crap. Data like that is inherently biased, because I know how many calories I have left to consume for the day, and I really have no idea how many calories are in my husband's famous chicken pot pie, for example. I will at least weigh what I eat, and enter it in as generic "homemade pot pie," or whatever it was. To do this, I need to buy an additional scale... maybe one of those small ones to carry in my purse. I can afford this; it's important.

Third, I will continue to exercise regularly, and commit to doing it at least 3 times per week. I love exercising... I love the feeling of accomplishment, I love my muscles being sore, I love having the ability to actually hold my body together using my stomach, and I love the flexibility that comes with it. I will continue to do the elliptical trainer for cardio, the Bowflex and floor exercises for strength, and by Spring I will have bought myself an appropriate pair of running shoes, and will get out there and start training for my 5k this fall.

I know that this is an appropriate time of year to be making all these new promises to myself. Lots of people feel this way immediately following the holidays. It's tough, and I have no idea why we associate eating ridiculous amounts of foods with having a good time at Christmas, but we do. Maybe by next year I'll be changed enough that most of these foods will look kinda gross to me. After all, I do already know that they make me feel crappy. This year I tried to stick to the dishes and confections that I knew I loved, but there were a darn lot of those!

Dec 22, 2009

Blizzard of ’09: Healthy-wise

Yeah, so West Virginia and surrounding East Coast states experienced quite the blizzard this past weekend. It started here at around 3 o’clock on Friday, and caused total chaos for everyone trying to get home from work, get to work, get to the grocery store, travel through the area, etc. Craziness all around. My family and I typically love the snow, and we love huge snow dumps like these, but it’s tough when some of us aren’t safe at home to watch it fall. It’s also tough, I have found, on the ole Healthy Diet.

For me, it started at 4:05 when I left work Friday evening. I ended up being in my car on the way home (with a few breaks in between, like the grocery store) for over five hours that night. Walked through my door for the evening at around 9:30. Needless to say, after 2 hours in the car sitting in traffic, 3 trips outside of the car to scrape snow out from under my wipers, and one emergency pee stop, I was not only a little on edge, but I was truly hungry. I remembered that I have an entire bag of snack food sitting behind my seat, so I dug in. Usually I relegate myself to only the granola bars and healthy stuff in the bag, which make up about 5% of the bag’s contents. This time, however, I grabbed what looked like the most spectacular thing I had ever seen: an unopened canister of full-fat Cheetos. I thought to myself, “Well, I can have one serving of this, right? Sure I can!” I checked the label, and it said one serving was 180 calories (22 Cheetos), and incidentally, the full canister contained 4.5 servings. I figured this sounded reasonable.

I proceeded to eat one Cheeto. Mmmmm. The next one was small, so I figured 2 small ones make up 1 regular one, right? Okay, 2 of those then. “As long as I eat them one at a time…” I thought. Meanwhile, I have moved one quarter of a car length. Before I know it, I’m eating them two at a time, and I don’t even care. Next thing I know, half the can is gone, and you know how it is… who wants half a can of leftover Cheetos? Plus, I’m really hungry! And stressed! And these stupid cars aren’t moving! And the light is friggin’ GREEN!

Needless to say, a few minutes later the canister was thankfully empty. I de-cheesed my fingers without the use of a napkin, and tackled my son’s water bottle in the back seat. 

Thus began my long weekend of the Blizzard of ’09. There was much food made lovingly at home (remember, “lovingly” means I’m allowed to eat it no matter what the contents), and much merriment in the form of alcoholic beverages (some warm and spicy, some cold and long-necked).

I found comfort in knowing that many healthy eaters out there like me were having trouble this weekend, because this snowed-inness was certainly much less expected than the Holiday parties and Christmas feasts we were all anticipating. This literally fell on top of us, and we had to deal with being stuck wherever we were, and bored for several days. I knew there were many of us out there, and some of us might find ourselves “derailed” after the weekend passed and the snow melted. I was determined that I would not be one of those. I know how my crazy mind works, and I am working to make it less crazy. There is no need to ruin the rest of my life because one snowstorm kept me cooped up for the weekend.

So, my New December22nd's Day Resolution: I will fear no food! (well, except donuts & cookie cake) No food can derail me (except aforementioned). And by the way, the weekend was awesome! We had time to relax with family, crazy overnighters, home made meals, Christmas presents, snowman making, shoveling, tottie-drinking… it was great. We were all safe, most of us remained warm (or were rescued by miracles and made warm), and all the Christmas bustle was ground to a beautifully screeching halt. It was fun. And healthy-wise, I am moving on.

Dec 8, 2009

"Movin' right along...

...foot loose and fancy free!" This is a song that Bryan and I often find ourselves singing because it often applies to a current situation. It's nice to be thrown back to that sweet moment of Fonzi and Kermit in the car, driving to go get their friends, just on the road and going... even though they go completely in the wrong direction. "...I never knew the sun came up in the West??"

I've been very busy lately... trying to finish up everything for my 2 classes, going on our annual trip to Universal, kids, work, etc. You know the drill. Taking time to write down what I've been up to just hasn't been able to be worked into my daily schedule.

But the song applies with me right now. I am moving right along. I AM foot loose and fancy free. I have lost 2 more pounds as of this morning, and yes those are the very next pounds in addition to the 20 pounds I mentioned before. It's been a long time coming for these next 2 pounds, but I have a lot of crazy times to show for it. Trips to Universal alone do not make it easy to maintain one's healthy diet... beer, popcorn, irregular meals, FREE club level food offered 4 times per day... you can see where that goes. Anyway, I did make good decisions sometimes, and sometimes I didn't. For the most part, I did well. I have maintained my weight, and haven't added any on. And a few weeks later... here I am, down 2 pounds. So, Kudos!

I've been trying to concentrate on how this is NOT about pounds though. I've narrowed this down to two things that it really should be about. One is: health, obviously. I want to be healthy, and being healthy will certainly cause me to lose a lot of weight in the long run. I want to be able to do whatever I want and not get overly winded. I want to feel like I'm not lugging myself around, but that I could bound up and off at any time if I wanted to. I want to have a healthy glow. The other thing is: economic concerns. If I had continued going the way I was going, I was going to have to buy new, bigger clothes. I had maxed out my current clothes, and eliminated tons of clothes that were too small for me. The good news is, I stored those clothes mostly in my basement, and they are still there waiting for my thinner self. Some of them are even still in my drawers and closet, and I've already started wearing them.

Also, I'm paying attention to my weightloss chart (on, where I log everything), and I noticed something cool about it. First of all, I'll have to clarify that when I say I've lost 22 pounds, that's from 250, my recent highest weight, back in early Summer. You'll see what I mean on the chart. So first, check out the chart.

See how back in June when I started trying to lose weight, I had a very steep drop in weight at the beginning, and then I totally gave up and creeped back up between then and September? Well, then notice that since I started my new plan, I have been dropping steadily, but with a much gentler grade. I like to picture it as a hill. I could walk down that 2nd hill. Some parts are steep, but for the most part I could walk down. The one back in June though, that's practically a cliff. No way you could walk down that without a repelling rope. Also, notice that while my brief attempt in June was merely a few weeks, my change in September has been constant for nearly 4 months. So, steep is bad; gradual is good. Keep an even keel... make it a hill that I could easily walk down, without even having to slide on my butt at all. I can do that. Heck, that's easier, right? It is easier. It means not starving myself, not making huge changes in my physiology over a short time... just taking it easy. Movin' right along. Foot loose and fancy free.