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Jan 30, 2012

Persistent and Constant

The secret to success is constancy to purpose.

~Benjamin Disraeli

Energy and persistence conquer all things.

~ Benjamin Franklin

I believe the key to succeeding at anything is being persistent and constant.

Don't give up and keep at it. Not half-assed at it....but continually chipping away until you find the angel in the stone.

The last few months I've only been doing half that equation properly. Persistent? Yes. After all,  I am a Scorpio and we never give in or give up :) But the consistency has been lacking in both eating and exercise.  The problem I have is doing both consistently well at the same time.

Funny, cause I'm one hell of a multi-tasker!

There's no magic formula. I just have to do it and I have before.

So driving home tonight on ice and snow covered highways, I made a decision to go back to my 4 x a week workouts. Tues/Thurs/Sat/Sun worked best for me and that's what I'm going back to.  Doesn't have to be a full on, sweat til I drop work out, just move for at least 30 minutes each of those days. I have a race at the end of March so running should be my major activity between now and then as long as my breathing keeps getting better it shouldn't be a problem.

Eating...I do really well most of the time...but most of the time isn't giving me the results I want. I've been pondering the problem of food for the last few weeks and as yet don't have an answer but I'm getting closer. I'll keep you posted. I know I need to count "something" otherwise it is real easy for that 1/2 cup of pasta to become a full bowl again. I need some kind of built in control that I can stick to, guesstimating doesn't work for me.

I like WW because it does have control and healthier foods are lower in points, so it does encourage healthy eating and it allows for the indulgences now and again - and to be completely truthful, its not the indulgences that are my problem. Indulgences are few and far between. It's the "What a crappy day, I'm so tired tonight, I'll just eat cheese and crackers, or cereal with milk, or leftover whatever". Not in huge quantities either, but definitely bigger than they should be and definitely not balanced meals.

When I was first diagnosed with Type II diabetes, I made it my mission to eat to lower my blood sugar and I did that. Although I am still on some meds, I am on the lowest dosage possible and my blood sugar is consistently within the normal range. Some days, I actually forget to take the meds and my blood sugar still stays within normal. My hope is that as I drop more weight and get closer to my goal, that I will be able to go off the diabetes meds completely. Anyway, back then, I refused to eat anything that would have a negative impact on my blood sugar and I did that for a long time until it became a habit to think first and eat second.

Maybe this is what I need to do now? The problem is not calories in/calories out (and this post is not to start a debate on that!), it’s good for me calories in and enough calories out. By “good for me” I mean my body and my health issues and my weight loss goals. I think I know what that is – I just need to find a way to do it – consistently so it works.

I’ll keep ya posted.

Jan 29, 2012

Rambling Thoughts on a Snowy Day

Where do the weekends go? These two days have flown by.

Today  Leigh and I went for a 5k walk with her lovely dog, Finn (hope I'm spelling that right!) along the Hamilton beachfront. It was the perfect mix of wind and sunshine on a Winter day. We did three intervals of running 60 seconds each and then decided to walk the rest of the way.

I woke up this morning in a lot of pain - not sure if it was from the run yesterday and getting so cold or just one of those days I've talked about, where everything hurts. Going out and walking took a lot of energy, both physical and mental but it was good to stretch the sore muscles and get fresh air.

The rest of the day was mostly dedicated to domesticity. Cooking, cleaning, organizing for the week ahead - you know all the stuff that makes life so exciting! I had a short nap and watched a bit of TV, read some blogs and I feel like I could fall asleep standing up.


The snow is coming down pretty hard right now and my youngest, Liam, is hoping for a snow day tomorrow. He has his final exam tomorrow so I'm hoping the weather is good so he can just get it out of the way and enjoy the last few days off before he starts second semester. I'm also hoping the roads are okay tomorrow to get to the GO Station for work. I leave so early that sometimes the ploughs and icers haven't been out yet and the roads down the mountain can get quite icy as well as the ramp onto the 403.

I've been thinking a lot today about what I eat and realise although I eat very clean compared to even a year ago - very little processed food and that is mostly when I eat out or at someone else's home - there is still a lot of carbs. The starchy vegetables, corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, peas....and although I eat brown rice and brown pasta, and keep the portion sizes to half a cup at a time, they are still very high carb.

Over the years I've tried to adapt an Atkins or Dukan style diet but never seem to stick to it for more than a week at a time. I really don't like meat and have always eaten very little meat of any kind, since I was a little girl. Its the texture, doesn't matter how I try it cooked - or what kind of meat, and sometimes it feels very heavy in my stomach.  Most of the meat alternatives are carbs - so although it isn't impossible for me to follow a lower-carb diet, it takes a ton of planning and organization to make balanced meals.  I often wonder if I really *had* to do it, could I? And what does that mean about why I don't think I can now?

Just rambling questions in my head and although I do try and strive for lower carb meals on a day to day basis, it is nowhere near a "low carb" lifestyle. My endocrinologist advises a diet that focuses on the lower glycemic carbs rather than low carb.

On another note,  I bought a new cookbook from Weight Watchers which focuses on fruit and vegetables and are all in single portions which works out perfectly for me and I have new ideas for lunches.

Jan 28, 2012

Spring Chick Challenge–Mid Week Check in #4

Hey we’ve been at this 4 weeks. We rock!!!!

Here’s the quick and dirty on me -

1. Exercise
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Pre run! Post run! – my hair is wet from sweat not snow! Stats from C25K app.

Go me! I ran outside today for the first time since the Resolution Run. I ran 30 min straight (no walking or rest breaks). I actually can’t remember the last time I ran that long continuously – sometime in November. The app sets up a 5 min warm up, 30 min run and 5 min cool down, so its a 40 min workout in all. My breathing was the best it’s been during exercise in months. I know some of you run every day no matter the weather, but this was a huge obstacle for me to overcome, running in the cold and slush. I am terrified of falling and reinjuring my tailbone and I hate the cold. I was very cautious and went very slowly as it was snowing and the slush on the ground was starting to refreeze. It was also really, really windy. A  couple of times,  I Iost my cap and had to chase it! All in all though, I am feeling proud of getting out there in the snow, cold, wind and slush and for just pushing through. It wasn’t easy, it really felt like I was running for the first time – it took about 2 km for my legs and feet to remember how to run, and when I heard the prompts, “half way there”, “10 minutes left”, “5 minutes left” “1 minute left”, I just kept telling myself I could do this, I have done it before, just don’t stop. Pace was slow, but I am hoping this is Day 1 of my Comeback. Although I can’t say it was enjoyable, it was way better than the same amount of time on the treadmill or elliptical. And now…I’ve got a race to train for people!
I’m meeting blogger Leigh for a walk or possible run/walk tomorrow morning and will try the 30 min again in the afternoon in the weather holds out and it’s not icy.

2. Food
Not so great the last two days. I needed to refocus. I was really tired Thursday and Friday and when that happens, I either eat crap or don’t eat at all because either way, it’s less work. Neither is a good option for me and I went through both scenarios at various points during those two days. Today I am back on track though and am in control. Never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep!

3. Health
Feeling so much better. We should not take breathing for granted. It’s amazing how much it affects so many aspects of our health.

4. Random stuff
Trying to get a trial crossfit class sorted for next week – that will be my new activity for this week. The Zumba class I wanted to go to was cancelled this morning.

I know you are all just finishing your fourth week so I’m off to read blogs and leave some witty comments.  You’ll hear from me on Wednesday with my Week 4 results.

Jan 26, 2012

To join or not to join….

Back in November I joined a local gym because my running had already dropped off considerably, partly because of an injury and some breathing problems, but mostly because I didn’t like to run in the dark or in the cold. The cold didn’t turn out to be such a problem as we’ve had a mild Winter for the most part, but the dark was. Guenther, my awesome running partner all summer, had far surpassed me in speed and I found I was running alone in the dark. I did it for a week or two, but it made me nervous and and the more I tried to do it, the more reluctant I became to run at all – which wasn’t helping me whilst trying to understand this “running love” that I didn’t have.

Anyway…the point is, I joined the gym to get through the Winter, so I bought a 90 day membership, which will end on February 24th. Part of the joining package included 2 Personal Trainer sessions, a box fit session and of course their spiel on their own nutrition plan and personal training sessions.  It was a good sales pitch and to be truthful, the PT I worked with was a really nice guy, very patient, explained everything to me (the how and the why) and really pushed me to do more than I would have done on my own.

I went back and forth in my head. The nutrition plan is basically a preset meal plan with recipes, grocery lists etc. based on my personal caloric needs and food preferences. It would be nice to be handed something that tells me what to eat and when and not have to think about it, but for the most part – I do this fairly well myself so it’s not needed at all. The PT sounded more like something I’d like to do as I hate going to the gym but I would keep appointments, especially appointments I am paying for and it would be good to learn more about strength training and some of it would be covered by my health benefits.

I started thinking about all the things I have coming up. March 9, me and Leigh start the Learn to Run clinic at the Running Room which is three runs as week.  I have three races between March and May and we also are going to start yoga in March as well.  So…when I would I fit these PT sessions in? And, I still want to learn to swim, the session for January was cancelled due to low participation, so I’m hoping the March session is a go.

I have always believed that what gets me to my goal weight will also be what keeps me there. This means that if I get to my goal by doing some crazy schedule of a workout every night, I’ll have to keep that to maintain my weight. It’s not realistic and I know myself.  3-4 workouts a week is doable and sustainable.

After weighing everything, I realised I would like to do some PT sessions but only to the point that my benefits would cover it – I don’t want to spend money on that right now. My membership runs out February 24th so until then I will make the most of the gym – aquafit, zumba, treadmill, elliptical, weight machines etc. and also try and fit in some PT sessions. Once March hits, I will have enough activity to help get me fitter and smaller.

Guenther and CarbTripper have also got me curious about Crossfit, so that maybe something else to explore once I get my health issues sorted.

Jan 25, 2012

Spring Chick Challenge–Week 3 Results

Start Weight 213.8
Week 1 213.4
Week 2 210.3
Week 3 210.3
Total Loss 3.5

Here’s my round up of my week (Thursday to Wednesday)

Weight

Stayed the same this week and although it is always a little disappointing not to see a lower number, I know I had a great week. The scale will catch up. It just means to keep going forward and not give up.

Food

Stayed on track and within points all 6/7 days. Ate clean and portion controlled meals cooked by me. I had one meal out at a Thai restaurant and made it fit into my day/week as well as a box of Junior Mints so I didn’t hit the 100% sugar free but I’m happy with it.

Fitness

  • Saturday – 30 min box fit class/30 min elliptical
  • Sunday – 20 min walk/35 min walk including half the Wentworth Stairs
  • Monday – Walked 20 min at lunch, it was pouring rain and I didn’t feel like sitting all afternoon in wet clothes!
  • Tuesday – Walked 30 minutes

Monday I woke up very stiff and sore. Abs and shoulders were tight and the most sore (that’s from the boxfit warm up and workout) as well as my calves from the jumprope and stairs. All day I was counting minutes until I could go home and soak in a hot bath. It helped tremendously. I was fine by Tuesday morning.

Fun

Met Leigh at Poonapalooza for a walk, signing up for the Learn To Run Clinic and coffee. Enjoyed the milder weather we had on the weekend. Had a really nice chat with Liam on our walk on Sunday afternoon. Loved the boxfit class.

Next Week

  • Keep tracking/counting/avoiding sugar
  • Fit in activity when I can
  • Mini Challenge – try a new activity – I’m thinking, Zumba maybe?

Health Stuff

Just as  a follow up to last night’s post, thank you so much for all your support and good wishes. I’ve investigated a few things and have decided to cut out drinking caffeine – this means I may still indulge in chocolate now again, but I’m giving up coffee, black tea and my beloved Diet Pepsi and Coke Zero. Now I’ve done this before and gone up to 9 months so I know I can do it. I’m hoping it helps. I’m going to start tomorrow and hopefully the worst of the cravings will be gone by Monday when I return to work and more importantly, there’ll be a health benefit in a week or so.

I’m loving this challenge, I don’t think I ever made to the third week of any other challenge I tried before. This one just seems realistic and supportive rather than competitive. I’ve met some great new bloggers and gained some interesting insight.

Jan 24, 2012

To thine ownself be true.....


This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.  

~Source: WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE, Hamlet, act I, scene iii, lines 7880. Polonius is speaking to Laertes.

This quote is about self-respect.

This post is about self-respect.

I haven't felt well for months, probably since about mid-September. At first, it was a little annoying - my breath would catch every now and again, food would start to get stuck in my throat, I was tired more often than normal, my legs felt heavy, my back ached, ny hair seemed to be falling out an alarming rate, my skin was dry, red and flaky....minor things that I sort of felt I should just "get over". In September I was still in full running mode - 4 x a week and looking to go further.

All through October I struggled with running, I just didn't feel like running, it didn't make me feel good and would leave me feeling tired all the next day, sometimes with muscles aching more than I did when I first started. I didn't even have the energy to push farther and harder on the few times I felt like I wanted to try.  My knee started to bother me, ranging from pain to minor aches. Then the first week of November I did my first 5K race, I pushed through it, even though it hurt physically and in the photos of me running, there are visible winces.  After the race, I had a hard time walking for about 3 days and the pain would come and go, sometimes I could run, sometimes I could hardly walk. I rested, I iced, I took Advil, I pushed through - I wasn't sure what the right course of action was.  Finally I learned I had torn a hamstring. A week's rest, two physio sessions and my knee/hamstring were good as new - I was lucky.

But the feeling of fatigue, achiness,  breathing and other problems continued in varying degrees. I could have days where I felt fine and then days where I could hardly catch my breath and days that it felt like every single muscle in my body was screaming at me, days where concentrating on the simplest tasks was impossible and days where I was so tired, it was fight to just keep my eyes open all day. I would have days where I'd sleep 10-12 hours straight and wake up feeling like I hadn't slept in days. I know some of my friends and family thought it was in my head, maybe panic attacks or some other psychological problem.

I know I how I feel. I know what feels right and what doesn't. My normal might not necessarily be yours. I did see my Family Doctor during this time and she set up an appointment with a respitory specialist in February (this was back in December - gotta love the Ontario medical system!). By the first week of January I knew I couldn't wait that long and the respitory problems didn't address the other problems I am having.

Today I saw my endocrinologist. I love this woman. From the first appointment almost 10 years ago, she has never steered me wrong. She is both medically smart and people smart. She is compassionate and kind but tough and expects her patients do the work to get better.  I usually see her twice a year, my last appointment was in November when I casually mentioned some of the issues to her. We tried a change in meds temporarily at that time, but it made no difference and some of the symptoms were so minor it was hard for me to even define them.  As soon as she came out of her office and saw me today she said, "You don't look well, what's going on?"

I told her all the symptoms and the severity. She wrote everything down. She asked questions, she did an exam, she asked more questions. She went through my file, asked more questions. 

Then she told me what she thinks it is and how we would treat it. Then she told me all the other things it might be and the tests required to rule them out.

She also told me all my bloodwork was normal - everything in the normal range and that on paper, I was perfectly healthy. My diabetes is better than optimal control. My thyroid appears to be functioning normally (with the level of meds I'm on).  But she said, these are numbers are for about 90% of the population, there's always those people that fall within the numbers that aren't well. You're one of them. She said we just need to find out which of the numbers that looked right, weren't right for me.

So we're treating the horse right now, but going to look for the zebra, just in case. Either way, she said, "In a month - we'll have answers and if you're not already feeling better, we'll get you better." I'll let you know what the outcome is in a month or so...but none of the causes are life threatening or terribly serious - all are treatable and curable. I'm going to be fine.

So my whole point of telling you this....is that YOU know your body better than anyone. You know what your normal is. YOU know what feels right and what doesn't. Trust yourself, trust your instincts and respect yourself enough to take care of yourself and seek help.

I would not have let my spouse or my kids feel sick for three months and let them do nothing about it. Why did I think I wasn't worthy of the same self-respect or care?

Jan 22, 2012

Of boxing gloves and stairs, pulled beef, races and many other things….

Mid week check in for me for the Spring Chick Challenge. My scale is showing a slight drop since last Wednesday so that is always nice to see. I know that scale has a mind of its own though, so it just means to keep doing what I’m doing and not slack off.
Eating has been good except for a minor run in with a box of Junior Mints (sugar!!). I counted it, tracked it and moved on. It fits into my weekly points  and surprisingly, didn’t start a huge sugar craving fit. That was Thursday night and since then I’ve been back on track and have had no more sugar.
Lunches planned for this week are pulled beef (sirloin tip) and homemade coleslaw wrapped in a Weight Watchers tortilla, with an apple or yogurt on the side. I cooked the beef in the slow cooker on low for 6  hours and it just melts in my mouth. I made a spice rub of cumin, chili powder, chili flakes, ground garlic, salt, pepper and onion powder and marinated it overnight in the fridge, then put it in on a bed of sliced red and white onions in the slow cooker. Delicious!!! I am not a big meat eater, especially beef, but it IS really, really tender and flavourful when cooked this way.
I’ve been managing to fit in activity here and there.  My week goes Thursday to Wednesday.  Thursday night I came home, made dinner, didn’t even eat dinner, then crashed. I was very tired and needed the sleep. Friday night I went to the gym to talk prices for personal training and getting a full membership. I’m still on the fence with it so no decisions have been made.
  • Saturday – 30 min box fit class and 30 min elliptical
  • Sunday – Walked about 20 minutes or so with Leigh and then Liam I just walked from the apartment to the Wentworth stairs, down to the road (half the stairs) back up and then home, its just over 2km round trip. It is hard work walking on snow/ice. The stairs were wet but not icy so they weren't so bad. I found it so much easier this time than I did the last time I did them back in the early summer. So that was another 35 min of activity.
The boxfit class was fun, it was a short class as it was a 30 min free demo with my membership at the gym, but he said it was pretty much what they do every class, just shorter amount of reps. I now know what the “numbers” mean! I thought it would require more coordination and I would feel clumsy but I didn’t. It is a lot more cardio than I thought it would be. When I was standing outside the boxing studio waiting for my session to start, I was watching all these incredibly fit (and skinny) people do lunges, jumping jacks, chin ups and a bunch of stuff I don’t even know names for and I admit, I was more than a little intimidated, but the instructor was really nice and we just went at my pace. Even with a gym membership, the boxfit classes are an extra fee.
I signed up for a Running Clinic (Learn to Run) starting March 9th with blogger Leigh from Poonapalooza and we are going to do  “The Chocolate Race” in Port Dalhousie as well as the Hazel 5k in Mississauga as the clinic’s graduation race. For someone who’s never run and hates exercise– Leigh is jumping in with both feet and not looking back. Way to go!
I spent a lot of time sorting through clothes, both mine and the boys’ and packing up stuff that doesn’t fit or isn’t worn anymore. I need to go through my shoes, I have about 50 pairs but I only wear about 10 on a regular basis, there’s no need to keep that many pairs of shoes…is there? Maybe? I am so bad about parting with my shoes! It’s not like I grow out of them!!! Anyway, it felt good to be a little more organized and have a little more space in my closet and for my (teeny, tiny, itsy bitsy) bedroom to be less cluttered.

Jan 18, 2012

Spring Chick Challenge–Week 2 Update

Start Weight 213.8
Week 1 213.4
Week 2 210.3
Total Loss 3.5

What worked

Food. I did amazing with food this week, ate clean, portion control, counted and tracked. Except for a few bites of Bailey’s Cheesecake on Saturday night, I have not had any processed sugar in 11 days and feeling really good about it. I also ate twice but I made good choices and counted everything and made it fit into my week.

The mini challenge was to eat with my non dominant hand and I have to admit, it didn’t slow me down! I even mastered twirling spaghetti with my wrong hand. That’s dedication for you!

The recipe I made was Butternut Squash Macaroni Casserole from the Whole Foods app on my phone. The link will take you to the recipe on their website. If you go by their recipe, it makes 8 humongous portions that work out to 11 points each. I made 16 portions and counted it as 6 points each. Next time I’ll halve the recipe. I really liked it, it seems rich but it actually is very light tasting. I enjoyed it and my 15 year old loved  it. To lighten up the fat and calories (and therefore WW Points Plus), I might substitute half the coconut milk with unsweetened almond milk. The coconut flavour is barely noticeable, its more of a sweetness that you taste.

I went to my WW meeting and stayed. The topic this week was Organization – one close to my heart. If my house is cluttered, my head is cluttered, if my bedroom is cluttered I can’t sleep, if my life is cluttered with ‘stuff’ – I have a hard time focusing. Organization is my life saver and my mantra.

What didn’t work

Running. I did walk every day at lunch that I didn’t have meetings or plans to meet a friend (I missed 2 days out of 5). I didn’t get to the gym or hiking. My hike was off because I slipped on ice on Saturday and bruised my knee. It seemed fine when I went to bed on Saturday night – a bit sore but nothing major. Sunday morning it was blue and swollen and hard to bend and although I probably could have gone at slow pace, I was more scared of falling again so I cancelled. I did walk 3k on Saturday and again on Monday. The knee is fine now, still bruised and a bit scraped up but not sore or swollen. The gym just does not motivate me at all and the thought of running on the treadmill does nothing to excite me.

When I was running four times a week with my friend Guenther, I couldn’t get my eating right – it was too much, too little, too irregular and now that I have my eating right, I can’t seem to get the exercise in sync.

Next Week’s Goals

Fitness

I had to think about this. I think as much as I would like to think I’ll run – in my heart I know I won’t…so I’m going to walk as much as I can on my lunch. It’s easy to bump the 30 minutes up to 45 minutes and also fit in longer walks on the weekend. Maybe if I take the pressure off trying to force myself to run – I’ll do it…reverse psychology? Who knows.

I never loved running and I’m not sure I ever will. I got this far by telling myself I didn’t have to like it, just do it….but that’s not working for me in the cold and dark of Winter.

Food

Of course I’ll keep tracking, staying within my WW Points Plus and eating clean 80% of the time. I achieve this part by making at least 19 of my 21 meals at home as well as 3 snacks each day and taking all my food to work with me. It also saves me a ton of money when I’m not buying food during the day – even healthy food adds up.

Fun

Spending time with family, friends and my books always makes me happy. So does cooking and new recipes. I’ll make at least one new recipe again this week.

Mini Challenge – No Sweets

I’m going to clarify that for me that means no processed sugar so I’m going to keep on riding that wagon. I do use maple syrup, raw honey or agave syrup for cooking and sweetener when needed.

Final thought

Just gotta keep goin’, cause givin’ up ain’t an option!

Jan 15, 2012

Week 2 Check In–Spring Chick Challenge

I know for most of you on the challenge it is the end of week 2, but for me, it's the middle because my weigh in day is on Wednesday and I wanted to tie the challenge to that...so there you are :)

This week is going well for me so far and my scale is showing a definite drop in weight which I hope will show on Wednesday night's weigh in at WW. This week's weigh in topic was "Planning" and one of my favourites. I don't always stick to my plan but if I have no plan, I definitely do worse than having no plan at all.

I am meeting my weekly goals at about 80% and since I like the 80/20 rule I’m good with that. I am on day 9 of no processed sugar and feeling really good about my resolve and am even sleeping better and waking up less fatigued. I’m glad that the week 3 challenge will push me to keep that goal.

Although I believe in planning, I also believe in leaving room for life to get in the way. I have a full life and sometimes $hit happens.

I am not one of those people that is going to beat myself up because I missed a work out because I felt like meeting a friend, or reading a book, or playing Monopoly with son instead. I’m just not. This is my life, my journey and I have to do it in a way that meets my lifestyle and my needs, not yours, or yours or yours…or even yours.

Yes, I may be slower at losing weight than others, I may not spend as much time exercising or I may not eat all the right foods – but I am getting healthier, fitter and smaller at a pace that works for me, without overwhelming me, without making me give up, without driving me and everyone around me crazy.

If someone offered me a pill that I could be at my goal weight over night, I would take it in a heartbeat. If there were an easy way out, I would take it. But there isn’t, so the alternative is to put in the work and take each day as it comes and do the best I can with each day I have.

You don’t have to agree. You don’t have to like it. You have your journey and I wish you all the success you hope for.

In other news, I met a blogging friend for lunch on Friday and another blogger on Saturday for coffee and they are both so energetic, so enthusiastic and so inspiring that they completely lifted my spirits and renewed my resolve. I wish Tiffany lived closer so we could DO stuff together more often but no matter what is going on her life she always takes time to check on me and encourage me. She is my daily reality check. I think day to day support is really key for me and I’m lucky to have Tiffany and others who are always supportive and encouraging.

Jan 11, 2012

Spring Chick Challenge–Week 1 Update

Start

213.8

Week 1

213.4

Total Loss

0.4

What worked

  • Taking all food to work (also saved money!)
  • Staying for a WW meeting
  • Getting out and hiking, treadmill running, walking at lunch time

What didn’t work

  • Didn’t exercise as much as I planned to
  • Didn’t stay as focused on the weekend as I need to

Biggest Obstacles

  • Time and Medical Issues
    • Solutions
        • Time – Plan and be organized!
        • Medical – Have endocrinologist appointment for Jan 24

Support

  • I am thankful for my blog and real life friends who cheer me on every day and never stop loving me.
  • I am thankful for Iain and Liam pitching in with the housework and meals so often.

Plans and Goals for Week 2 (Jan 12 – Jan 18)

  • Try one new recipe
  • Track everything and stay within points
  • Track activity points
  • Pack and take all food to work
  • Go to a WW meeting
  • Walk every day at lunch
  • Run (Treadmill or Outside) 3x – at least one 5k
  • Mini Challenge – eat with my left hand

Jan 8, 2012

Productive Weekend

I accomplished a lot this weekend with a little help from my friends...(cue Beatles music).

Unfortunately, as much as I got done on the errands/life stuff, I failed on the healthy eating side. I did get in a 3k run on the treadmill and a 45 min walk outside at Crawford Lake which was awesome because although it was cold and very, very icy - it was glorious to be outside in the sunshine.

Wednesday will be my Week 1 weigh in for the Spring Chick Challenge and I had a sneak peak yesterday and let's say it was a wake up call to get my $hit together and start rocking this weight loss thing again. I have pretty much steadily (and thankfully very slowly) gained weight since July. A combination of reasons/causes but none of them are insurmountable with more work and effort. I am hoping by Wednesday at my WW meeting I will see a slightly better number than I did yesterday.

I have all my food packed for tomorrow at work, my bathing suit and stuff packed to go to Aquafit  at 8pm tomorrow and my running shoes packed to go for a walk at lunch. I need more sunshine in the day to keep me sane. I leave for work when its dark and I come home when its dark, if I don't get out at lunch I don't see daylight at all because my area of the office is in the middle of the tower so there aren't any windows within in sight and if I walk past a window, there isn't a lot of light because of condos directly across from us. It amazed me today how much being out in the sunshine improved my outlook - and cured a nagging headache I've had for days.

Jan 5, 2012

Week 1 - Midweek Check In - Spring Chick Challenge or the Best Laid Plans of Mice and M’Enz

imageDespite awesome planning - sticking to the plan isn't working so well.

Let's look at the positives from Monday to Thursday this week:

  • Eating - excellent, within points, clean, healthy food with the exception of one meal last night and  I took all my own meals to work.
  • Coffee - 1 cup per day.
  • Water - about 2 L per day.
  • Tracking - every single bite.

What's not working:

  • Getting to the gym - some excuses, some legit reasons - either way - I need to make it work.
  • Getting to Weight Watchers to weigh in!

Some good stuff on the horizon though - the weather is looking up for the weekend and I have a hike planned for Sunday and a gym session Saturday morning. I'd like to get outside for a run at least one of those days as well. I had hoped to get outside for a run tomorrow night but my son and his girlfriend are coming over and I haven't seen Iain in over a week so I don't want to take time away from him.

I can go to WW first thing Saturday morning to weigh in and still manage to get all the other stuff done and hopefully next week, I’ll get to my Wednesday night meeting. Last night was the night of mishaps and I just couldn’t make it in time. (Actually my whole day yesterday could be a blog post – but I don’t want to rehash negative feelings so I’m letting it go…breathe Enza, just breathe!).

The biggest challenge for me is time - work, groceries, cooking, food prep, laundry, housework and spending what little time is left with the boys makes taking time to go running or go to the gym feel like I am taking time from them. My days are longer in the Winter, I get home a full hour (sometimes more) later than in the summer so it always feels like I am neglecting someone or something.

It all comes down to what's important to me, right?

Without a doubt - my boys are the most important aspect of my life right now and although I know in my head that being healthy and happy and around for a long time setting an example of good eating and exercise (finally!) is the best thing I can do for them and me...I hate that I only have an hour or so of real time with them every night.

It will work out - it always does. What seems insurmountable today seems ridiculously easy tomorrow.

Jan 4, 2012

New guy in blogland....

My Fat Fight

This is my friend Guenther, who I started Couch25K with this past summer. He's on his own journey to health and weighing less. He has surpassed me in speed and distance in running and I am just a tiny bit proud that it was my text one night, "Want to do Couch25K with me?" that got him started running.

So go check out his blog and give him some support.

http://guentherball.blogspot.com/

Jan 3, 2012

Radical Ideas

I had a great eating day. Stayed within my points, ate real food and drank water and only one coffee! I'm weaning myself off coffee, not because I think it's bad for me but because my friend Shelley pointed something out to me a month or so ago and I think she might be right. I put a lot cream in my coffee, like 4 of those little plastic creamer things in a 6 oz cup. One day, watching me hog all the cream on the table, she said, "Do you even like coffee or do you just like cream?" You know what...I think she might be right. I don't think I really like the taste of coffee, it always tastes bitter, hence putting in so much cream. I do love tea and drink it slowly and savour it. Coffee...I only finish half a cup and the rest goes cold....cause you know....cold cream made hot by coffee then gone cold is just gross!!

Anyway....off track. Today's problem. I packed my gym stuff last night, put it in the car this morning and stopped at the gym on my way home. Drove around the parking lot - several times - had to weave and squeeze past cars that were not actually in parking spots or in parking spots they created in the middle of the driving aisles.  I parked in front of the door and looked in the window. Packed! People were actually standing around waiting for machines. I waited for 20 minutes and no parking spot came open. This is a big lot, it must hold over 200 cars. Other than park illegally on the street or invent my own spot - there was nothing I could do but leave. Even if I had found a parking spot or made one up - I hate crowds. You know how people have nightmares about drowning or falling or being trapped in a burning building? My nightmares are about crowds.

You know what? I was really disappointed. All day I had been thinking about running 3k on the treadmill in the women's only section of the gym. I had my playlist, my water bottle, I even bought new earbuds!

Now....it is most likely going to be like this right after work for the next few weeks. So..what do I do? Go later? I have to be in bed by 10 so I can wake up at 430 and be half human. If I go later, I don't think I'll be able to fall asleep in time, by the time I come home, shower and unwind - it's going to be late.  Get up earlier? How much earlier would I need to get up? If I slept in my workout clothes - one advantage I can see to being single - and had my workclothes ready in a bag and woke up at 4:15 and immediately went to the gym, I could work out til 5, shower, brush my teeth, dry my hair at the gym and be on the road at 5:30 like I normally am....couldn't I? Is 15 minutes a huge difference? Most mornings I wake up about 20 minutes before the alarm goes off anyway....not that I GET UP...but I am awake.  Do you think this doable? Not forever - but for a few weeks til the Resolutionists drop away?

This is a very radical thought for someone who hates mornings, the dark and the cold; for someone who loves, loves her down comforter and every moment of sleep when its dark outside.

Tomorrow night is Weigh In Night. Weight Watchers will also be full of Resolutionists. But as long as I get a seat for the meeting, I'll be happy.

Jan 2, 2012

Spring Chick Challenge–Week 1 and Intro

image

I only ever signed up for one challenge in blogland and I didn’t see it through. I hate feeling like I have to live up to someone else’s idea of goals and expectations. This one, though, I like the premise behind it and I like the sense of community and support it will bring and I will give. And it will help Winter fly by if I have some sort of direction to follow.

The challenge starts today, here’s the website: Spring Chick Challenge or click on the image.

Commit to a NSV (non scale victory) to be assessed at the start and the conclusion of the challenge.  

  • Goal: Run 5K twice a week (outside or treadmill)
  • Current: Run 5K about once a month

Commit to a set of nutrition parameters and track via MyFitnessPal or Sparkpeople or WW.

  • Goal: Track and stay within WWP+ every day/week (27 per day + 49 per week)
  • Current: Tracking and (mostly) staying within points.

Commit to a set of exercise parameters. These can be as loose or as flexible as you feel work for your personality, schedule, etc.

  • Goal: Run 2x a week either inside or treadmill. Do some kind of workout 5x a week
  • Current: Sporadic workouts – all or nothing – no consistency.

Commit to blogging at least twice weekly and 1 of those times must be you check in with a complete up date on your progress. All other blogs could include new insights, results of weekly challenges, or just letting others know how you are doing.

  • Goal: My check in day will be Wednesdays as that’s my WW Weigh-In day. I’ll blog at least 4x a week about progress and life in general.
  • Current: Sporadic blogging.

Commit to support... both giving and receiving. Check others blogs and comment as you feel motivated to do.

  • Goal: Following a whole bunch people doing the challenge!

Introduction

Name: Enz
Blog URL: the-4walls.blogspot.com
Email: downwardtrenz@gmail.com
Age: 44
Location: Hamilton, ON

Just trying to get fit and healthy to have more time to live and enjoy my life. Tired of being tired all the time.

Weekly Goal

This week I’m focusing on planning meals and exercise and sticking to it!  As well as going to WW, weighing in and staying for the meeting. I’ve made a meal plan, have all the groceries in the house and am set for a great week ahead!

Weight Info

  • Start: 211 lbs
  • Goal for Challenge: 199 lbs

Life Goes Back to Normal

Holidays are over. Life, real life, resumes tomorrow. I’ve had 9 days off and it was wonderful. It’s the most time I’ve had off with nothing to do in a very long time and I enjoyed it. I went to the gym, ran outside a couple of times, cooked, ate, cleaned, celebrated, watched TV and movies, hung out with my boys and with my friends – it was really nice and over all too soon.

Today is all about prepping so I can have a great week to lose the overindulgence bloat from the last two weeks and get back on to downward trenz in weight loss.

Groceries, food prep, meal planning and laundry and general tidying up were all done today. The boys are still off school for another week so I want to be able to come home from work and enjoy the time with them.

I’m also going to try something new for me. I’m going to pack my gym bag the night before and leave it in my car so when I get off the train after work I can go straight to the gym (which is on my way home), do a 30 min workout, either cardio or weights, then head home. I know once I get home after work and its cold and dark outside, I won’t want to go back out and will fight with myself and find a million excuses not to. I’m hoping this will help. I’ll keep you posted. I’m planning to do it on Tuesdays and Thursday which are my regular workout nights as well as Fridays.

What’s your opinion on Personal Training sessions? Of course, since having joined the gym, they are pushing personal training and although I can see the merit in it – I did two sessions with a PT who I really liked and the time flew by plus he pushed me to do things I wouldn’t have done on my own. I am not sure I can fit it into my budget, but I wanted to get some opinions on it first. So chime in, tell me your experiences.

Wednesday nights I’m going to back to my Weight Watchers meeting. Although I like Saturdays, it is always so crowded and it will be more so the first few weeks of the New Year and I really like the Wednesday night leader. Wednesday will also be my first official weigh-in in a month so that will be interesting! Whatever it is, its just a number along my path.

Oh..and the new series of Biggest Loser starts tomorrow night – it’s my only television trash and I’m not ashamed to admit it Smile

So here’s my plan. I find I do so much better when I have a plan to stick to. If I can control Monday – Friday, I find I do so much better on the weekend when I have no real routine and I don’t plan meals most of the time. Monday isn’t filled in for this week as my week this week starts on Tuesday.

Bfast Lunch Dinner Snacks Other
M
T Protein Shake Ham sandwich, salad greens w/oo and lj homemade turkey/veg soup and pita crisps banana
apple
30 min run
W Protein Shake Cobb salad with oo/lj Pita pizza yogurt
apple
WW Mtg
Weigh In
T Protein Shake Ham sandwich
banana
Roasted vegetables and pork loin apple
cheese string
30 min run
F Protein Shake turkey/veg soup
cheese string
Pasta with roasted veg and chicken apple
yogurt
30 min elliptical and weights
S Protein Shake meat loaf and mashed potatoes 30 min run
S Protein Shake roast beef and vegetables 30 min ellipitcal and weights