Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Day 4 - Boundaries, Not Diets

  Linda tells us, "Picture your diet program as a road or a path.  You can define the boundaries of your diet road based on the number of calories, points or other factors you choose to follow.  As you walk on the road each day, your goal is to stay between the sides of the road.  During times when you are strong and focused on our diet, you move the boundaries closer together, making the road narrower.  When you take a break from the program or are in maintenance, you widen the boundaries and allow more variety in your plan.  But, even on a really bad day, you never get off it completely."

Well, let me just tell you.  I'm pretty sure that I must be driving a Hummer on the diet-road-of-life.  Whenever I take a break from my program...  look out!  I am 4-wheeling it right off through the bushes and into the ditch.  Yup, that's me.  Off roadin'! 

I was thinking about this a lot today.  It was a really awful day.  Toward the end of the day, I was hit with a sudden wave of depression, stress and frustration.  I cried.  I was anxious.  So I ate.  I felt I ate.  I felt I ate.  I ate a plate of nachos.  Then I ate another.  Only then, about midway through that second plate of melty cheesy goodness, did I realize what I was doing.  I was eating because the food was my friend.  That plate of nachos, it told me it loved me.  It gave me a hug.  It was only after eating way too much that I realized that my friend wasn't hugging friend was squeezing the happiness right out of me.  This reminded me of some past relationships.  Like a toxic relationship, I keep on coming back to food because of love.  Oh, yes, like a bad boyfriend I keep thinking that things will get better if I just keep on waiting.  You know, I think maybe it's time that I break up with food.  This relationship is no good.

1.  Think about how you can define your narrow diet road compared to your wider diet road.  Make a list of your eating and exercise plans for both the Narrow Road and the Wider Road.

Narrow Road:
-Stay within my daily (Weight Watchers) points target
-Stick with my weekly points target
-exercise for 1 hour a day
-eat at home - plan a menu
-take daily supplements
-sleep at least 7 hours per night
-kick the caffeine/soda habit
-focus on health and weight loss

Wider Road:
-splurge but don't lose control
-move more
-eat out but make wise choices
-take a multi daily
-if I lose control, just start over
-Focus on health vs. weight loss

2.  Decide on ways you can be flexible with each of these boundaries without losing sight of the healthy road you want to follow.

I really want to lose weight, but I find that when I wander off road I end up thinking that since I'm not going to lose, my health doesn't matter either.  If I could at least just focus on one thing I want to work, replacing my usual breakfast fare with a green smoothie, then I have at least taken control of one aspect of my diet plan.  Then once I have that worked out...I can focus on another.  And maybe another.  Linda says, "boundaries should give you benefits not punishment...they are guidelines...not burdens."

Today - as I ate those nachos... 
I realized pretty quickly what I was doing...and even why. 
And that's a start...

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Day 3 - Do It Anyway

The things that feel important are the things that we do...even when we do not want to.  Changing diapers, taking out the trash, brushing our teeth to name a few.  But there are so many days...ok, most days, where I wake up and think "but, I don't feel like exercising!"  So I don't.

Day 3 asks us to improve our commitment and learn to focus our actions and not just our feelings.  On days when we are not in the mood to eat right or exercise:  do it anyway!

You know, honestly, I don't feel like working out - ever.  I know that I need to, and I would see better results, and maybe I'd even have more energy if I'd just do it anyway.

Today we need to take yesterdays no matter what approach, pick something we don't want to do, and do it anyway.  There are a couple of things that I could focus on.   For example, today I didn't work out and I ate Chick-fil-a (it was SO good).  Yes, I fell into that "drive by the library, and right by Chick-fil-a" trap!

I know that working out more would help in so many ways.  Maybe because I'm a homeschooler, and I have my kids around me 24/7, I feel like as soon as I get a moment to myself the last thing I want to do is workout.  I want a NAP!  Or to just check my email!  Or read!  But--I need to do it anyway.

In other news:  Anybody know how many points a #1 from Chick-fil-a is?   a LOT.  Yes, that was an epic fail...  (Did I mention it was good?  And that we were all starving?)  At least I didn't go to McArsenic or anything...

Oh, and I should add I went for a second try at the smoothie and it turned out better.  Banana/blueberry combo with a glop of Greek yogurt made it pretty yummy and a nice purple color...much better than poo-colored.  :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Day 2 - Interested or committed?

Whenever I get started on a new eating plan I always think to myself, "this time I'm going to stick with it!"  Then something comes up.  Girl Scout cookie time?!  A trip to Disney World.  Date Night.  A party.  A baby shower.  It doesn't seem to matter...A moment of weakness and then I crash.  I once heard one of my WW meeting leaders tell me, "just because you break a plate...doesn't mean you go break the entire set of dishes."  So true, but I often find myself doing just that!  I blew, since I'm already doomed I may as well just binge. 

Day 2 asks us whether or not we are merely interested or if we are really committed.  Linda says, "When you're truly committed to achieving your goals, you stick with it, no matter what."  We are encouraged to adopt a "no matter what" attitude.

1.  Decide to be committed to your weight-loss plan, not just interested.   Yikes.  A tough one for me actually.  I guess I struggle with commitment since I've watched myself snarf it so many times in the past.  It seems that when other are eating something tempting...I succumb to a moment of weakness...that leads to a disaster.  I know that I need to be committed.  I can. I can.  I am definitely guilty of blaming my husband on some of my weaknesses.  I will need to work on this one.

2.  Describe how you will stick with your program, no matter what.  If I slip up, it is not the end of the world.  Shoot!  I shouldn't even view it as a "slip up."   It is a splurge.  And splurging is a part of life.  (Although I probably shouldn't make it a part of my daily life - lol).  If I splurge, it does not mean that I have failed.  I can make a better choice when confronted with temptation.  I am strong & committed.  I can DO HARD THINGS!  I can.

3.  Do one thing today that demonstrates your commitment.  Oh, boy...I started out my morning with a "Green Smoothie."  There has been so much hype lately over the green smoothies that I thought surely I must be missing something.  I finally gave in and decided to make one.  First of smoothie was NOT green.  It looked like poo.  On the upside, it didn't taste was fine.  It was actually pretty good.  If I do this more often, I'm going to have to invest in a better blender.   Mine started smelling hot!  Of course, it is a decade old, I'm pretty sure it was a wedding gift.   Oh, and I'd better find some recipes or something because this was the ugliest smoothie ever.  The girls liked them though.  And we easily ate all our fruits and veggies for the day, including Omega-3s first thing.  I put about 1 cup of water in my blender.  Added a packet of Coromega Omega-3 (1 WW pt - but this should be ok to count as your "healthy oils" for the day.)  I then threw in a big handful of raw spinach.  I blended it until it was all liquidy.  Then I added a mix of strawberries & blueberries...which turned it to the color of poo.  Then to sweeten it up (so I could coax the kiddos into drinking it) I threw in glob of FF vanilla yogurt.  That did the trick.  It turned out pretty good and should calculate out to only 2 WW points for a big glass.  

Please though, if you have a better recipe than mine, do share!  I don't know if I could face a fresh glass of poo every morning.  It was pretty incredible though to get in my healthy oils and most fruits and veggies first thing in the I don't have to worry about them for the remainder of the day!  Yay!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Day 1 - I Used To Be That Way

Past failures do not mean that you will have the same result again.  I have tried and failed plenty of diet plans in the past.  I've tried Weight Watchers (this is my 3rd time), Jenny Craig, HCG, Atkins...and probably others.  I made it to goal at WW the very 1st time I tried but, of course, went right back into my old habits and gained it all back (plus some!)  It's only been in the last 6 months or so that it occurred to me that I am missing the mind-body connection somehow.  It is all mental.

For me, for whatever reason, my life revolves around food.  When is it time to eat?  What am I going to have?  Should I have this?  Should I have that?  If I go to the library...we will drive right by Sonic...or we could drive to Walmart and we will end up by Chick-fil-a.  If we go to Sam's we could have cheap pizza and a HUGE soda.  YUM!  Oh...I should NOT have eaten that.  I couldn't resist.  If nobody saw me eat that...then it's like it didn't happen right?  Why don't have I have any will power?  And on, and on, and on. 

Why does my life revolve around food?  It's not like I was deprived as a child.  It's not like I faced hunger or starvation.  I'm not sure I understand, but it is something I do recognize about myself...and the main reason (I think) that I've been unsuccessful on any weight loss program.  It is that feeling of deprivation that I can't tolerate and that desire for instant gratification that I miss desperately when I'm "dieting."  I miss that comfortable stretch of being "full" and the comfort knowing that later, if I want, I'll have that last piece of ....   

Day 1 tells us that, starting today we need to "eliminate the belief that things always go a certain way or that you never stay with your goals."  Ack!  Easier said than done I think!  Linda tells us to give ourselves a new message:  "I used to be that way, but now I'm different!"

Make a list of fears or negative behaviors that have hurt your weight loss success in the past.
1.  I am a quitter - i.e. I have NEVER been good about finishing what I start.
2.  When it gets too hard, I give up.
3.  When I get tempted/frazzled/tired, I tend to give in.
4.  Then I figure - since I slipped up I might as well throw the towel in.
5.  A big one for me - I've never been able to do it before...I probably can't do it now either.  Who am I fooling?

Now, write new endings...I used to be that way - but now I'm different! 
1.  I used to quit, but now I always finish what I start!
2.  I used to give up when things got hard, but now I find a way to make things more manageable, in fact, I enjoy the challenge!
3.  I used to eat when I stressed, tired or frazzled but now I read a book, take a nap, blog, hop on the elliptical or write my 100 days journal!

My mantra for the last couple of years has been "I Can Do Hard Things."  It got me through our adoption journey but now I think it is appropriate for this weight loss journey as well.  In fact, now I see this mantra everywhere...which is pretty amazing.   I googled it a bit ago and saw people who had run their first marathon, a lady who had competed in a triathlon and a family who just made it through a contested adoption.  Wow.  I'm not THAT amazing...and I'm not interested in running a marathon or competing in a triathlon or gracious NO, I do not want a contested adoption!  But, I can do hard things.  I can.  I can.  I can.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

What is this all about? - 100 Days of Weight Loss

So, if you are reading this then you either a good friend, my Mom (hi Mom!), or you are the kind of person who can't look away from a train wreck.  Yes, I'm referring to myself as a train wreck!  It doesn't really matter which you are because I am glad that you are here...and I hope that you will be willing to drop a line of encouragement every now and again.

So, what is this all about?  I have started this blog because I'm bored and I don't have nearly enough to do.  Ok, just kidding.  That is so far from true.  Honestly, I started this blog because I just wanted to do it.  I am struggling in my own skin.  I have gained up to an all-time high with my weight and I desperately want to get it back down.  I have so many thoughts flying through my mind and my family blog just doesn't seem like the place to put it all out there.

When I set my news years "goals" this year I was determined that I was NOT going to set "lose weight" as a goal.  I never actually end up losing weight, and each year I think I end up more discouraged than the year before.  In fact, many of you may remember, a long while ago I had a weight-loss blog called "Going To Health in a Handbasket".  Where did that blog go?  I don't know?  I guess somebody wanted my domain name...because that blog just disappeared out of my dashboard.  Being the creative genius that I am (lol) I found a new and improved blog name and I'm ready to roll.

I had mentioned to my husband last night "I think I'm going to start blogging my weight loss journey...oh never mind...I'm not sure I want that kind of accountability.  When I snarf it, then everybody will know..."  Maybe that isn't a bad thing over all?  I then decided that just blogging a weight loss journey would lead to the same result as last time.  I'd quit.  I need a challenge.  Something to keep me motivated.  So, I've decided to try blogging  at least 100 days of weight loss.

I'll be using the  book by 100 Days of Weight Loss by Linda Spangle.  I have a connection with this author in a couple of ways.  First of all, I had never heard of her until I was in college in Denver.  Her husband was one of the greatest teachers at our school, I took several classes with him.  Dr. Spangle was amazing.  Back in 2003-2004 my hubby and I went through several rounds of fertility treatments...all unsuccessful.  Then 1 big round of IVF which drained our bank accounts.  I went to school one night...(after receiving a negative result from IVF that afternoon) in tears.  Dr. Spangle spoke with me and expressed empathy, mentioning that he and his wife suffered from three, yes THREE, stillborn births.  I was shocked.  I knew they were childless...but I had always assumed it was a choice.  I knew his wife had written a book and out of curiosity to know what she was all about I read her book Life Is Hard, Food Is Easy.  In this book Linda shares how the devastation from the loss of their babies encouraged her to turn to food for solace...and how she found happiness again and lost the weight she had gained while drowning her misery in food.

My heart ached for the heart aches for me too.  Infertility is hard and drowning your sorrows in chocolate feels so good.  Unfortunately it comes with a trap - one that is so hard to escape once it has you in its clutches.

Now, several years later I learned that Linda Spangle had another book out called 100 Days of Weight Loss, the secret to being successful on any diet plan.  This isn't a typical weight loss book.  There are no recipes...there are no diet recommendations...there are no 'eat this-not that' sections.  It is a book that focuses solely on your mind.  It focuses on the realities behind emotional eating, motivation, and attitude.  I bought the book, and a couple of years ago I received the 100 Days Quick Start Guide as a PDF that I printed and had spirally bound so I could write in it.  (Unfortunately this is a perk of membership now - no longer a free download).  You don't need the Quick Start Guide to follow along...the info is also found in the book.  You would just need to journal it in a notebook, or blog, or whatever.
To learn more about Linda Spangle, the 100 Day Challenge, to sign up for her newsletter, etc...check out her website at

Today is day 0.  It's official.  I'm going to start tomorrow with Day 1.

I started Weight Watchers several weeks ago (I haven't done well by any means after our huge vacation to Disney and another 2 weeks off plan due to extreme laziness and procrastination).  My starting weight was 190.  Oh.  I can't believe that I'm even putting that out there in cyberspace.  That is just a painful number to look at.  My ideal weight, for my height (I'm 5'5") is probably in the 140s.  I can't believe that I need to lose 50 pounds.  That seems so insurmountable! 

I hope to blog as often as possible.  I want to at least blog 100 days.  Maybe not consecutive days...but, I'll try.  If anybody wants to follow along I'd be grateful for the company.  If you want to read either of Linda Spangle's books, here are the links: