Current Happenings

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Ready, Get Set....

I spent the afternoon getting ready for tomorrow. First, there was the trip to the grocery store to get what I will need. I needed to make sure that there would be enough main staples for the rest of my family, while I ate my own meals.

When I got home from the store, I began pulling things out of the freezer. My first round of dinners include chicken breast, broccoli, mashed potatoes, and peas. I put the chicken in the oven to roast, and the veggies in my steamer pots. Oh, it was a little hard to look at those fluffy mashed potatoes! I probably shouldn't cook while I'm hungry. That's better left for times when I'm not in danger of gnawing off my own arm. *laughs*

I got my dinners tucked away in divided tupper containers, waiting for me in the fridge. My lunches are where I splurged, getting some Healthy Choice frozen "Steamers". Oh, how I love their General Tso chicken. It's not the absolute best that I could do, but I'm looking to save my sanity a little bit while I'm working through all of this. Maybe I will do something different for lunches next week, but I want to make this first one as easy as possible.

I already have some workouts planned and written down, all equalling the 2 hours per day that I will be exercising. I'm flexible though. My husband bought a membership at my gym, so he and I can now exercise together. Since the gym has a babysitting service for a few hours each day, we can bring our daughter and let her hang out at the gym with us while we exercise. She has a Didj handheld learning game thing that she can play with while we are there. I'm nice, so I won't sit her down with homework. *laughs* I'm thinking that we won't go to the gym any more than 3 days per week, since my husband isn't used to going. That leaves me another three days at home to fill with sweat.

With us having church Wednesday evening, I'm going to exercise at home with my sister. She said that she is going to try and give this a go with me. We are going to do "Walk Away The Pounds", the 3 mile walk with weights. We're also going to do "Tone & Sweat" with Richard Simmons. Lastly, we are going to take turns with the XL Glider, and get in 35 minutes of sweatiness. I'm hoping that this is an easy enough beginning, because my chest is still a little sore. I think that I just slept on my side too long, and compressed the cartilege on the right side of my sternum. I injured it years ago, and now it takes only small mistakes to leave me in a bit of pain.

I guess that I'm all set! I know what I'm doing and eating tomorrow. For Thursday, I'll go to the gym with my husband, and we can work each other to a lather. I'm hoping that after a week or so, we'll both be able to do "30 day Shred" together. We'll see. *grins*

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Looking To April

April is a rather important month for me, for two good reasons. First, my birthday is in April, and I'll be turning 29 years old. This marks the beginning of the last year in my 20's, and I'd like to finish it strong. I would like to be in the best shape that I can be, crossing that mile marker, you know? *grins*

The other nifty thing about April is that it is the last full month that I have during the first leg of this journey. In May, I will have been walking this rocky path for a year. That is a big deal for me, because I've never managed to really stick with these kinds of lifestyle changes in the past. To me, a year is a HUGE deal. I am excited to reach the end of it, and charge into year number two. It is my plan to take off the remainder of my excess weight over the course of the second year. Hopefully it won't take me a whole year to do that, but it'll be fine if it does. This next year is going to be very important, as I learn how to transition from losing weight to maintaining my weight. As I've said before, I'm devoting just as much attention and dedication to the latter as I am the former. I will consider the first full year of maintenance to be as vitally important to this journey as those first steps were.

I've got a little time to play with before I get there though! So, I am going to pounce on April and just devour it. To be honest, I'm not sure what the scale is going to do. However, I am going to try my hardest to drive my numbers down. I've been putzing along lately, just knocking off around 1 lb. per week for a little while now. My body has been changing, but the scale is only reflecting a little bit of that. Some of that is just a desire to relax minutely and enjoy some of the experiences in life that also involve food stuffs. I could skip all birthday cake or choose not to have a small ice cream cone on a hot summer day. I know that I can't live like that forever though, so I haven't cracked down on myself real hard. Hey, pounds lost are pounds lost. I'm happy to just not weigh the same amount that I did this time last year.

While I don't feel comfortable spending the rest of my life without ice cream or good Mexican food- that doesn't mean that I can't dig up the willpower for 4 weeks! It's only one month. One. I can do that. I'm going to look at these 4 weeks as a type of "bootcamp". I'll exercise for a solid 2 hours, 6 days per week. I'll eat 1,500 calories, which I think will be enough to keep me from dropping into a 'starvation' mode. If I don't see results, I'll increase the calories by 200.

I was working on a meal plan today, along with my week #1 menu plan. Since I'm going to be working so hard, I want to make things as easy on myself as possible. I am going to eat the same foods for one week, so I can easily cook all of my dinners at the beginning of the week. I managed all of my food choices until I had all of my nutrients where I wanted them to be. What colors I don't get into my diet during week #1, I can work in during the other 3 weeks. I'm going to just try and go through the rainbow and be sure to get in a little bit of every color I can find. I'll probably skip blue though, since I'm not fond of blueberries, and I can't think of anything else that is that color. I think that I'll even give eggplant another try, maybe as some kind of "burger", or in chili. I'm still thinking that one through.

According to my internet research, I'm supposed to drink 4 liters of water each day while I am being active. I have a liter bottle that I am carrying around with me, and I refill it whenever I finish it. I haven't been paying much attention to how much I'm actually drinking though. I'm going to focus more attention in that area through April. I want to be sure that I am drinking all 4 liters of water. My other beverages can be counted separately.

Another change that I'm making is to cut way back on my useage of sweeteners. I want to dial that back a bit, because I think that using them causes me to want to increase the sweetness of nearly everything. I actually put three packets of sweetener in my cup of coffee this morning! That is just too much. I need to tone it down with the sweet stuff, at least for 4 weeks. That should help to "reset" my sweet-tooth.

Lastly, I'm sending myself to bed earlier. I have been staying up later and later, even though I know that I shouldn't. It's been pretty common for me to stay up until 2-3 a.m. lately, and that leaves me feeling like crud in the morning. I sleep in later, which I don't like. It just puts the whole day off. Besides, I don't eat in my sleep. *laughs*

I think that that is all of the changes that I'm adopting for my "Squishy Bootcamp". I would be wonder-ifically ecstatic if I could work myself down to a comfortable size 14 before my fit-iversary. Since I'm in some rather loose 16's now, I'm sure that it is possible. I may not be on "The Biggest Loser", but that doesn't mean that I can't drop some serious poundage if I put my heart and head to it.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Gotta Fight For It

I'm not pretty when I sweat. I know that there are some girls who sit themselves on the bike, and they just pedal away while reading a magazine. I've been told that those girls "glisten" or "glow". Not me. I get splotchy. I get even more pale than usual, except for the parts of me that turn bright red like Rudolph's nose. I don't "glow". I bring a towel to mop myself up with, because sweat runs down my body in what looks like rivers.

I can't afford to read a magazine while I ride the bike. I've got too much work to do.

Of course, it's no wonder that no one ever tries to approach me or talk to me at the gym. As soon as I slip my headphones on, I'm all business. Don't get me wrong! I'm a friendly gal!! I love to talk with people, but not when I'm looking at what I know is going to feel like a little piece of torture. *laughs*

I'm not some super-human somebody. I can't bench-press my husband, nor run even a half-marathon. I just want to try and do the very best that I can, and not give a half-assed effort. I know that I don't have to be perfect, just do the best that I can. What I don't want is to use the notion of "my best" as a cop-out for being lazy. Lazy isn't going to get me what I want, or help me keep what I have.

Anyone who has lost a lot of weight probably understands that there are a lot of changes that take place within your body and mind during the process. I think that this has been a time when I've drawn some lines in the sand, and determined where my priorities are going to lie. Am I going to sit around, because watching tv and nibbling popcorn is so much easier than exercising? I dunno. Do I want a butt that looks like the couch? *laughs* Do I want to eat half the carton of ice cream at a time? I could, I guess. Do I want to be as wide as I am tall?

Life would be so much easier for me, if I adopted Tony's view on food. Oh, but I do love the little cupcakes though. *laughs* Yesterday, it was chocolate chip cookies. I wasn't feeling well, and for some reason I decided to play stupid and pretend like nibbling cookies all evening was an ok thing. Oh, the things that I tell myself sometimes. It's ridiculous. Anyway, later that night I had a good talk with me as I walked in front of the bathroom mirror.

{Let me just say that the next little bit is going to be very blunt. It's also rather personal. If any of that might bother you, feel free to skip it. }

I love my husband. Oh, I know that big girls deserve love just as much as skinny girls. I've had it both ways. So, as I stood there in front of that mirror, my eyes settled on some very important things for me.

There is that sharp jaw of mine, which I always thought was so ugly and horse-ish. He likes it though, and was so happy to see it again as the weight melted off. One day he just looked over at me and gave me the biggest grin, and ran his hand along the side of my face. I can't think of any reason why I'd want to steal that kind of thing from myself. It's wonderful when some part of me makes him happy, because it puffs me up and makes me even happier.

My upper body is much leaner, everything from my neck to my bust. My shoulders look sleek, my arms strong, and I can't say enough about the sexier underthings that I can wear now. I much prefer lacy, beautiful things, not something that looks like a harness used for pulling carriages.

There is something very wonderful about feeling my husband's hands slide over my ribcage, without them sinking into squishiness. I have actual bones. I can feel them. *chuckles* My back is now much stronger, so I sit, stand, and walk with better posture. There is something so nice about wearing beautiful clothes and feeling graceful.

I have a waist. I don't look square or round! I can feel my hip bones, and it makes me happy because it reminds me of the times when my husband presses those fine, strong hands into my hips to hold me close. It is exciting and intimate. My belly is smooth enough that we can be truly close, without my bulk getting in the way. My bottom is smaller and tighter, and earns me spontaneous smacks (lol) of appreciation. My legs are sleeker, well muscled, and look longer. I didn't get any taller, of course. Because they are leaner, they appear longer. My ankles are even smaller, enough so that my husband can easily wrap his hand around one. It is a beautiful thing....

... and it could all go away.

This is the point when I remember that I've been at this place before. My weight has bounced around a lot. I've been more slender, and I've been wider. Pretty soon I will match the mark for the lightest weight I've been since having kids. I've had to lose more weight this time around, just to get there. I didn't learn my lesson the first time. I didn't learn how to smash cupcakes with cauliflower. *chuckles*

As I was looking at all of these parts, I was thinking about how much I enjoy the freedom of being more slender. I was thinking about how much I enjoy the ways that my husband enjoys my body. I was thinking about how horrifically I would cry to lose all of that.

"If you want it, you've got to fight for it."

I actually said the words aloud, to myself. This is what I want. I could stand to lose a few more pounds. That part isn't so important to me though. What I want more than anything isn't to find out how skinny I can be, but to keep off these +/- 53 lbs. that I've lost. I refuse to put it back on in fat. I've learned my lesson, and I know that I have to buy whatever it is that I want. If I want to lose a pound, I need to earn it in sweat. If I want to enjoy a few M&M's, I need to buy them with sweat. If I want an easier rest day to relax, I need to buy it with more cauliflower. (Eating healthy fruits, veggies, & lean meats instead of processed crap.) Everything has a price. Everything needs to be bought. These things that I love so much- they are worth the effort. I'll never be some knock-out, but when my husband's eyes light up with such approval and excitement, I feel like the most beautiful woman in the world. I want to enjoy what is left of my youth while I have it. I'm willing to pay the price and earn what I want.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Sleep For A Week

I think that I could sleep for a week. I had to make due with pulling a pillow over my head and just relaxing while Pumpkin watched cartoons. I was at the gym yet again last night, only this time I had my husband with me. He had never been there before, so I grabbed a guest pass and we used it to spend some quality time together. *chuckles* Ok, maybe I'm more than a little strange to think of that as quality time.

We start by hitting the treadmill for 20 minutes of walking/jogging to warm up. I'm pretty sure that we then lifted every weight in the place. At least, that is what it feels like today. I wouldn't be feeling so cruddy today, except that I've stacked too many days at the gym on top of one another. Usually, I'll bust my buns there, and then take a day or two for at home workouts, and then hit the gym again. I also need to work in a rest day here and there. I haven't gotten the rest that I need, so my muscles are sore.

I am not exercising today. Nope. I'm gonna be a bump on a log today. The most ambitious thing that I'll do is stretch carefully. I may even run a hot bath and soak for a bit. I'm going to just take it easy and drink a ton of water. I'm carrying around an extra 2-1/2 lbs. right now, which mysteriously popped up as soon as I started beating the crud out of myself at the gym. Since I haven't given me a break, neither has the scale. With rest and water, the number should start coming down again.

On a more positive note, I think that DH wants to get a membership at the gym. While we were working out, there was one gentleman there who was doing some serious work with the free-weights. I could see DH's excitement over the sense of motivation and encouragement that he felt. This guy who was lifting was not a big guy, and I think that it helped to remind DH of what he could do if he felt so motivated. (My husband has a leaner build. He would have to live at the gym if he ever wanted to be huge and ripped. Thankfully, neither one of us desire him to be a massive guy.) All in all, I think that I may have a new gym partner. I don't know how long it will last for us as a couple (on the training floor), but I'd be happy just to be able to watch him while I'm running.

I'm honest enough to admit that I'm no dude, and I can't exercise like one. Even though my husband hasn't been exercising frequently, he has a very active job. That leaves me barely able to keep up with him right now. I can outrun him easily, and I have more stamina. His goals have nothing to do with running and cardio though. He is already slender enough that he doesn't need the cardio work that I do. But, even if we aren't evenly matched, it would be so nice to have him there. I'm not above wanting some nice "eye candy" while I'm sweating myself into a drippy puddle. If he wants to walk around with his tank on and show me how yummy his muscles are, I'm not going to complain. *laughs*

Monday, March 23, 2009

Lying Numbers

The scale isn't being nice to me this morning, and I wish that I could tell on it... and then someone could stand it in the corner and make it be nice. Um... yeah, it doesn't work all that well with kids either.

I worked SO hard yesterday. I'm surprised, but I'm really not sore. I just feel a little muscle-tired. Even that isn't so bad. Physically, I'm feeling pretty darned good, aside from some blisters that are wanting to form on my big toes from running.

During the course of the day, I stopped logging my food yesterday. I was just a little busy, and forgot to do it. I know how much I ate though, so I plugged the numbers in today, and I was a little shocked. I got in about 1,141 calories. Ouch. After I plugged in my numbers in CPH for my workout yesterday, it estimated that this was my burn for the day:

Totals: 1,169 calories in 1 hr 45 min

Hmmm.. I'm not really knowing what to do with those numbers. I guess that is a bad thing. I didn't feel deprived or anything. I ate when I wanted to eat, and I felt like I had a good dinner. I had a plate with about 3 oz. of chicken, and then piled high with cauliflower, broccoli, and spinach. For a snack, I later had 1 oz. of cashews and about 5 strawberries. I'm sure that these are not the things that pounds are made of, at least not overnight. lol

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Sunday Sweat

I stayed up way too late last night, playing with my hair. DH and I stripped parts of my hair so I could lay a red-brown through the black. It took longer than we thought it would, hence the late bedtime. I've got to get a handle on my hours though. This Squish needs to be getting in bed around 10:30 p.m. or so.

When I dragged myself out of bed this morning, I immediately put my gym clothes on. It's a good thing that I'm not a terribly vain woman, because I went to the gym with multi-colored hair of various blazing hues. Seriously, it was white, yellow, copper, and black. Banana just isn't my color, you know? But, I went anyway and got my sweat on.

The treadmill was up first. I alternated walking and running, and then used the last 10+ minutes or so for sprints. I would walk for 60-90 seconds, and then sprint for 60 seconds. Wow. It's amazing, the power that sprints have to make me feel like puking. I hit the little red stop button after 45 minutes, and then went to lift weights.

I was still sore from lifting the other day, but just barely. I gave myself a strong resistance workout today. I can barely walk, after the running and the grueling torture that is the squat machine. I did inner & outer thighs, military presses, bench press, bicep curls, rows, and lat presses. About halfway through my weights, I ran into this guy who always seemed to be at the machine that I needed... so I took a few minutes off and hit some more cardio. I hopped on the upright bike for 15 minutes to warm myself up again, and I pedaled real hard before pouring myself back out on the floor to lift some more.

My body feels good right now, but I am tired. All I had for some breakfast was a bowl of chex. Granted, the serving was too big, and I used 3% milk. There were plenty of calories. It just wasn't quality fuel. Blah. I came home and heated a Lean Pocket, because I didn't have energy enough to actually COOK something yet.

Dinner is going to be delicious this evening, or at least it's going to feel like it after putting up with cold cereal and convenience food. I'm going to bake some chicken, cook some cauliflower, broccoli, and spinach. For "dessert" tonight, I'm going to air pop some popcorn and try sprinkling a little hot cajun seasoning on it. That might keep me from wanting any salt.... or anything else to eat for the night.

Edit: I don't have any pictures of myself with banana-colored hair, but I did blog about the whole thing. I have an ok picture of me with lighter hair.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Dead Arms

Ok, so what we ended up doing was completely different from what I had planned. After working myself over real good at the gym, I came home and did...

Sweatin' To The Oldies #2 !!

That was so much fun. I know that a lot of people don't like Richard Simmons and his fruitcake ways (He can just be over the top sometimes! lol), but I grew up with him. Back when I was a kid, my mom would use his tapes to exercise. That turned into us kids exercising with her, grabbing soup cans as weights as we bopped around the living room. It was great fun then, and still is now! My sister and I had a great time while exercising. We still got a good sweat on, but laughed ourselves silly also.

The only difficulty that I had was in doing the short weight training session near the end of the tape. Since I had already lifted weights at the gym, I didn't have much umph left in me! I used light weights, and my arms were just shaking like leaves. Today, I am pretty sore. It feels good though. I wouldn't feel nearly so good if I hadn't gotten in the gym exercises earlier yesterday. I like the sore feeling of well used muscles.

While I don't see us using Richard Simmons' workout tapes all the time, I plan on doing it at least once each week. Really, it's just so much fun. I also like the fact that nearly all of the participants on the tape are overweight or obese, and they are smiling and getting their sweat on. While it isn't the hardest exercise tape around (I certainly don't feel like I'm going to die or anything), I get such a crack out of it that that is the benefit. It's probably 90% just happiness over remembering the time that we spent exercising with mom and having a good time.

Friday, March 20, 2009

A Treat

White Flour Wickedness
I just ate my workout, plus some. *ha!* I'm sure that maybe I should feel just a little guilty... or something like that. I don't though. After all, what is the point of exercising hard, if it isn't to enjoy little things in life that are yummy? Today, my yummy was a couple of homemade waffles and a couple of eggs. The waffles were yummier than the eggs, because I cooked the eggs on the griddle. I accidentally overcooked my yolks, and that is most exceptionally horrific for this Squish.

I am full and sleepy. I ate syrup, something that I almost never do. Seriously, I could count the times that I've eaten syrup this year on one hand, minus a couple fingers. It was yummy, but I'm looking forward to the real yum in a little over an hour.

I'm going to exercise again!

You know, sometimes exercising is the yummy. I know that I forgot to mention it, but the yummiest things in life aren't always the ones that you put in your mouth. Tonight, I am looking forward to putting on a video, pulling out the weights, and getting terrifically sweaty with my sister. She hasn't been feeling 100% lately, kind of dumpy and lackluster. So, I'm going to basically beat the crap out of her tonight! Sounds like fun, eh? *chuckles* I'm not really going to be mean though. We're just going to work real hard. I want to push us both to the point where we get a good, strong sweat on and feel like puddles of triumphant ooze when we're done.

Rewind
I haven't been slacking off. It may look like that from my sad little workout calendar on the sidebar. I've been awful about updating the thing, and I'm still trying to figure out if that is a bad thing or not. I'm sure that you guys don't really care, and I shouldn't care either- so long as I am getting my exercise in.

It's been a little while since I've visited the gym, but I gave it a shot this afternoon. I was wonderfully ecstatic to find open treadmills. I guess the sunshine and the fact that it is nearing the end of March means something. Those who can run outside are doing so. The folks whose fitness dreams were planted in thin soil have shriveled up. I feel a little bad for the shriveled people, but hopefully I'll see them again next year. Maybe it will stick next time. It's hard to say what will happen to people, that thing that just makes things "click".

My main goal at the gym was just to run. I jogged myself in place for two miles, and it took 28:08. I had thought about going further, but my bladder disagreed. That is so annoying. So, I stopped running there, and switched to weights after my brief bathroom break. Ooo... I worked my thighs real good. I would do a set of 12 squats, and then settle into a "chair sit" pose and hold the weight for as long as I could. I repeated that 4 times. Then I hit machines for inner thighs, outer thighs, chest press, and rows.

Dessert
After my food settles, Rae and I are going to do the "Walk Away The Pounds" 3 mile workout. That is 45 minutes, if I remember correctly. I think that I'd like dig through my tapes and find my Tai Fit workout tape, and see if I can do that at all. Back when I got it, I couldn't survive 5 minutes of that workout. That was a long time ago, and if I can make it through a workout with Jillian Michaels, I'm sure that I can last a few minutes with the kickboxing. I think that maybe I'll try that first, since I'll probably have to study the tape a little bit, and that leads to a kind of start-and-stop workout.

After-Thought
Oh, and it is time for another accountability picture. I did take the picture, but you know... I'm not sure that it's worth posting. Oh, I'm still losing weight, slowly. I'm still getting plenty of exercise. Changes in me are coming slow though, so it seems silly to post another picture right now. I think that I'm going to wait until my Fit-iversary and post a picture on May 20th. Hopefully, I'll have a pretty dramatic picture by then, or at least enough of a chance that I can see some kind of difference.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Tortoise

Ok, I got my jog in. I'm sure that my neighbors think that I'm more than a little weird, but thankfully we did already establish that fact some 5 years ago.

I logged a good 2.4 miles in 28 minutes, which CPH says is a pace of 5.1 mph. I'm not sure how accurate that is, but I don't have a fancy GPS device to tell me the exact distance of my route, pace, etc. I just rely on an online map with GPS coordinates, and then use the same route with some regularity. What it lacks in accuracy, at least it makes up in not costing me anything. I just need an approximate anyway. I'm not running any races, particularly since I must be at least 1/2 tortoise, but it's good to know if I'm slacking off or not.

I'm going to be honest and say that this exercise didn't feel good. CPH says that I burned about three times as many calories as I managed to eat this morning. As you can imagine, that doesn't do much good for a gal's energy levels. Still, I wanted to move- not so much for burning calories, but just to move. I firmly believe that not moving leads to more not moving. When I stretch my legs and move often, then I want that exercise more often- even when I don't feel well. As soon as I start making excuses to sit on my butt, that's all I do. I just continue to sit on my butt. There is always another seemingly "really good excuse" waiting right around the corner.

The air was rather cold today. I was praying that the wind would die down a bit while I was running right into the wind. Ick. My eyes started leaking, so to a casual observer it would look like I really hated running. *laughs* There's nothing like sniffling and crying while running laps. Darned breeze. :o ) I think that the most distracting thing about this jog was that my leggings kept trying to fall off my butt. I find it interesting that I can handle foot pain and blisters, but go crazy when it feels like I'll run myself right out of my pants. Now that I know how it is, I'm going to switch to my grey drawstring yoga pants for running. At least those can't fall down.

Once I start feeling a little better, it will be time to take another trip up to the gym. When the weather is good, I prefer to exercise outside. There is something good to be said about running on a machine that forces you not to run too fast though. When I get outside, I want to go, go, go. I don't pace myself that well, so if I want to try and slow things down, I have to break up the running with spots of walking. Otherwise, I'll run until I make myself pass-out or puke. That may be the way of The Biggest Loser, but it's not the way of the Squishy. I take more of a common sense approach to exercise and weight loss, feeling no need to beat myself into mushy mass in order to "win". I guess that is the difference between doing it on your own versus going on what amounts to a game show. Anyway, I want to give myself a little endurance test. I don't really care about how fast I am running, so long as I am running. I just want to see how long I can keep it up before I can't do it any longer. That may only be 30-45 minutes or so. It could be a couple of hours. I don't really know.

There is a learning curve in taking back my body. I know, who did I take it back from? *laughs* Sickness. Depression. It's not unreasonable to expect that my body would follow my mind into all of that, and it doesn't look pretty in a pair of low-rise jeans. Now that I've taken up the upkeep of my body again, I feel the need to play with it a little bit. Oh, it's kind of how you test-drive a fast car, just to see what it can do. I want to see what I can do. Thankfully, I don't have anyone to compete with or measure myself against. I can't fail. *grins* So, even though I run like a tortoise, it's all good.

Does anyone stopping by know anything about endurance running? Granted, I'm not some marathon runner or anything. That's hilarious to even think about. I guess that is why I could use some tips. If I'm running for any real length of time, should I be drinking something other than water?

Rough Day!

Blah. Really. Let me just say that I was stupid last night. I inadvertently fasted most of the day yesterday, just because I was so busy. There was so much grunt work to do, and my sister wasn't feeling well. So, I did a lot of heavy lifting and hauling of canned goods. I re-organized the pantry, and found a way to squeeze my three lbs. of strawberries into the fridge without actually squeezing them. (Meijer has them for $1/ 1lb. container!!)

When I did get to sit down and eat, mainly after church last night, I chose foods that weren't the greatest for nighttime eating. I didn't drink much water during the day, because it can be hard to hit the bathroom while popping from store to store for the sales items. Then we had to hurry off for church, and all I had was a small cup of coffee while I was there. Last night, I had a couple eggs on a slice of bread, with a couple strips of turkey bacon. I put salt on my eggs, and the turkey bacon is awful for salt. Then, I had some peanuts. Really?! I'm going to be sad when the peanuts are all gone, but it is for the best. I shouldn't buy any more for a while. It would be one thing if I were nibbling them during the early afternoon, with a big glass of water. Nibbling them at night when I'm already dehydrated though? That's just rather dumb.

I feel like crud today. I had an upset belly all last night. I didn't want to drag myself out of bed this morning, but it's not like there really is any choice to be made on the matter. So, I dragged myself into the kitchen to make the kids some breakfast. I promised Pumpkin that I would make them some scrambled eggs, toast, and turkey bacon. Me, I had a cup of coffee that my sister made for me, and two slices of dry toast. I don't feel like I can handle anything more. I'm too nauseated to want to eat much of anything at all. I've been feeling bad like this for the past 3 days or so, maybe 4. My scar is burning and hurting. My abdomen is feeling a little tender. I think that maybe the discomfort is throwing off my eating a little, and those dietary changes are making my guts feel like crud.

I'm not sure why I'm having pain right now, but maybe it is just that the tissues are continuing to try and repair themselves. I do have a lot more feeling in that tissue than I used to. When the scar was brand new, I was really bothered by the disgusting absence of feeling. I could feel pressure, but not the real sensation of being touched. It just felt icky. I can feel now though. It's not quite the normal sensations, but it isn't bad. I've talked with some other ladies, and they have had similar experiences with their scars. I think that maybe some of my problem is that my body is changing so much, and as everything moves and changes proportions, it causes discomfort where my scar can't change.

Anyway, so that leaves me 2 lbs. heavier today (thank you, Self, for dehydration and salt. *rolls eyes*) and feeling rather sore and ill. I'm going to focus mainly on re-hydrating. I don't feel well enough to even want to tackle food right now. Maybe I'll feel better after a few glasses of water. In the meantime, I've got things to get done here at the house. I've been picking up enough that I feel alright in relaxing with chores. I'll do a little bit, and give most of my energy over to getting some movement in. I'm going to take a gentle walk/jog around the block a few times. I'd like to go up to the park, but it's a little chilly for the kids, one of whom is sick again. (He's also looking to share his germs with everyone of us, let me tell ya.) So, I'll stick to jogging my block, where I'll never be very far from the bathroom. *laughs* That really helps, on days when I know I'll drink water like a fish.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Beautiful Weather & Walking

It has been absolutely gorgeous today. The sun has been shining brilliantly, and the weather is warm. There is a light breeze, but just enough to make the tips of your ears a little chilled. After having a little bit of lunch, I grabbed a zippie and my mp3 player and went out to enjoy the sunshine.

There were lots of kids and runners out today. I walked over to the park and then walked some laps around the path before heading home again. All in all, I got 5.3 miles in during the hour and 18 minutes that I was gone. It felt a lot longer than that while I was out there. I'm tired now! *laughs* There is just something about all of the sunshine that makes me want to curl up and take a nap.

Before I curl up in my big red chair, I need to find something good to eat. According to Calories Per Hour, I burned more calories during my walk than I've eaten today. I'm going to fix that, if I don't fall asleep first. *grins*

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Cough, Hack, Groan

Have I mentioned that I somehow hurt my elbow? Well, I did. It was fine one minute, hurting the next. It's enough to make a gal a little crazy, except that I'm a little crazy already. I hate feeling fragile, but it seems as though I am continually hurting something. This time it is my right elbow, which I didn't think was all that bad until I just tried to pull my nephew up onto my lap. Yeeoowww!

Anyway, since my arm is pretty useless without this joint, I had to alter my plans for exercise. I had started walking on the glider, and then I just decided that I couldn't keep "not getting anywhere". So, I grabbed some of my husband's winter "keep me warm so I don't die" shirts, and I pulled them on under a fleece pull-over and a zippie. That seemed to be just enough layers to keep me from turning into an ice cube as I stepped out the door to start jogging. Man, that air was cold!! That would explain why I am coughing again. I'm not sick, but my lungs are less than happy. I made it through four laps though, which is about 1-1/4 miles. Then, I decided that the bitter wind was just too much, too hard to breathe. I came inside and "jogged" for 25 minutes on the glider. I guess it could still be walking, but my walking calculator tops out at 4.9 mph, and I generally keep up an average pace around 5.3 mph. We're getting ready to sit down to some tv now, so I'm going to sit on the stationary bike and pedal while I'm watching the shows on our DVR.

Can someone give me a shout-out and tell me that I'm not the only funny person who eats while riding a bike or walking on a treadmill? I don't have anything heavy, but a salad or some naked popcorn are great to nibble on while I'm biking that same spot in my living room. *grins*

To help me get all of my water in, I've been mixing up some "zero calorie" flavored water. I get the drink mix at Aldi, and it's pretty cheap. Instead of drinking it at full potency, I fill my big cup up with water, and then pour enough of the pink water in to color it a bit. That gives me just enough of a difference in taste that I can convince my brain that I'm not drinking a ton of water all day long. I may buy some of the lemonade mix next time I go shopping, just to change things up a little bit.

I wish I knew what to do to keep from coughing and hacking up a lung. I know, that came out of nowhere. I'm a little A.D.D. when I blog. I don't know how people run in the cold. I'm not good at it. I've never had any real success with running in the cold, though I think it is so cute to see folks with ice-crusted eyelashes. I'm probably just not meant to be that person. I've never been a smoker, so I know that isn't it. I don't know. I just don't know.

Ok, I'm dragging my tired behind out of this chair, and I'm going to plug in my new air-popper. Popcorn, here I come!

That's Cool!

Me: Ok, and these are the pants that I got at the thrift store. They are too small now, but I'll use them for some "goal" pants to help me see how I'm doing as things go along.

DH: Those are pretty small. Those look smaller than my pants.

Me: I know! They aren't smaller than yours though. These are 13/14's.

DH: You should try them on.

Me: Um... I don't think that would work. I might be able to get one leg in.

- pulls on pants-

Me: Oh, wow. That's pretty cool.

DH: You should button them up.

Me: I guess so, but I don't think....

Hey. Ok, that is just cool. They are snug, but I can zip them up without a problem. I guess I need to pick up a new pair of jeans for "goal" jeans then.

How It's Goin

Hi Everybody! Things are going well over here. :o )

I am going to the thrift store this afternoon, to try and find pants for my sister and myself. We have both been working ourselves well, and are now moving out of our clothes. Rae brought up some of her jeans for me, since they are the size that I am now wearing. Since she is so much smaller through the hips than I am, she is in desperate need for some bottoms. It's going to be fun, poking through the racks with fresh eyes, now that we are both able to wear some cuter clothes.

I've been a good girl, and I'm happy to see the scale moving down a little bit more, a wee bit at a time. I'm down another 1/2 lb. as of this morning. DH was fussing at me last night though, telling me that I needed to eat some more. He has a point! I've been eating such yummy snacks, but they are pretty low in calories. I have eaten nearly two whole pounds of strawberries, a few bananas, a couple oranges, and a bunch of popcorn.

Before anyone freaks out about the popcorn- I bought an air popper! It's been so nice! I measure out my kernels ahead of time, so I know how much I am making, and then I just sprinkle a little "Butter Buds". I'm getting used to not having the salt.

Exercise has been going pretty well. I'm still getting myself all hot and sweaty, but I've stopped trying to calculate how many calories that I've burned. I'm just doing it for the movement, and not the numbers. That feels nice. I pedaled on my bike for 1 h. 50 m. yesterday, and enjoyed it. That's in addition to jogging for 25 minutes earlier in the day.

Well, everyone is ready to go, so I'm off!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Runeth Over

Hey, my fit-iversary is only a couple of months away, and I want to do something cool. I was talking with my little sister this morning, and I think that I'm pretty set on rock wall climbing. *grins* Doesn't that sound like fun? I'm afraid of heights, but I'm alright when I know that I'm not going to splatter, and I can't be looking down. Since I'll be watching the wall and focusing on getting my butt up the wall, I should be ok. So long as I'm feeling all fierce, I can do a lot of things that I wouldn't do if I didn't wear my aggressive nature like battle armor. It's just like running, how I can struggle with a distance when putzing along on my own, but I eat up the ground when chasing. It works both for me, and against me. I can get in an awesome workout with someone who knows how to feed that drive. On the other hand, if someone pushes me and challeges me in a way that I can't accept, I'll run myself into the ground until I'm hurt and puking my guts up. I think that is why I allowed myself to become so unfit and sick, because I can't stomach weakness and helplessness- and being broken in such a deep way just stole the life from me for a while. It wasn't until I made up my mind that I wanted to stop surviving and LIVE that I found my fight again, and I've been pulling hard ever since. No little rock wall is going to make me shake and cry. I might have in the past, but not now. It just sounds like too much fun. It helps, knowing that I'm not going to splatter on the floor. *chuckles*

I wonder what kinds of things that other people want to do, when they determine that they want to live more of their life? I want to ride horses again, though I'm more cautious about it now, after having been squashed. It sounds like fun to take a few lessons, just to shake the dust off, and to sit a horse that I know isn't going to try and bury me. I want to go backpacking and hike some beautiful trails. I want to go canoeing and white-water rafting. I want to ride a roller coaster big and bad enough to make me scream like a little girl. I want to take some lessons and learn how to confidently pole-dance, just because (as I've been told so darned much) I'm a rather naughty girl. *chuckles* I want to slip into a short skirt and some big black boots and pick up the mic again. I want to feel the music pounding so damned hard and loud that it takes my breath and it blows the roof right off the place. I want to dance just for the fun of it, not caring a wit who is watching, no matter how stupid I look! *laughs*

Weigh-In and the Not So Stretchy

Hi Everybody! The scale was kind to me today, with a loss of 1.5 lbs. since last week. While it's not a big number, I am extremely happy with it- just because it is a loss. With changing up my routine so much and not counting every single calorie, I was a little worried about what I'd end up with. Ultimately though, I felt much better with simple measurements of food, instead of agonizing over grams. It was much easier to get by with simple measuring cups, just to be sure that I didn't completely miscalculate serving sizes.

Yesterday, I pulled out an oldie, but a goody. I unpacked some boxes of books from the basement, now that we have a bookcase large enough to house them. I found my "Walk Away The Pounds" tapes in there, so my sister and I pushed the furniture back and used the 2 mile tape for a base workout. Afterward, she hit the glider and I used the bike. I'm going to use the WATP 2 mile again today, but I'm going to increase the weights to 5 pounds. The weight-bearing portion of the workout is rather short, so I can begin to increase the poundage until I start to really feel it. I want to eventually get up to using the 15 lb. weights. That will take some time though, because I have a lot of work to do in getting my chest strong enough to combine aerobics and weights at that level without injuring my sternum or chest wall again. I'd only do it with this video, because there isn't any jumping around with the weights, just a small amount of leg work while doing curls and presses. I'm not into knocking myself out with big hunks of metal. *laughs*

I took my measurements today! I'm down all over my body, which I already knew. (31 inches total) I was just interested in knowing the numbers because my new pants are feeling might comfortable, which means that by next month, they should be looking all droopy and frumpy. I had to run out the other day, and I accidentally grabbed a pair of my "big" pants and threw them on. I was so out of time though, I just thought that I'd keep them on and change my bottoms when I got back home. *laughs* Yeah, that didn't go so well. The only thing worse than having pants sliding off my butt is loose underwear. It was bad. I have go to go back through my clothes and get rid of the bigger sizes again. I'm sad, but at least I have my cute brown dockers to keep me from feeling too sad. I'm almost out of my jeans that I bought in December, and that makes me sad. I've learned my lesson though. Even if the jeans feel absolutely wonderful and sexy, I should wait and buy them when I am going to be maintaining for a while. Again, sexy jeans don't look so sexy when they are all droppy. I'm going to have to buy some cheap-ish jeans in 12's and 14's.

I'm noticing that there is a lot of weird body feelings to deal with, working so much on my fitness. It's exhilarating to be able to run for a half hour without feeling like I'm going to die. Ah, but then there is that pain in my hips when DH just drapes his arm over me at night. I keep having to move his arm, because it presses right at the point of my hip and it hurts. I rolled onto my back and showed him what I was talking about. I have wide hips. They always make me look thicker than I am, and maybe I'd feel better about them if I had a strong child-bearing body, you know? Anyway, I'm still working on that squishy part of my lower belly that takes such a hard hit every time that I become pregnant. So, while I'm squishy there, I'm looking like I've got the hips of a dairy cow. *chuckles* I put DH's hand on the curve of my hip, and he was really shocked. He said something like, "Wow. I don't have that. You're pokey!" He was surprised to see how differently my bones are shaped than his, simply because I'm a woman. I've always been a well-padded girl, so I'm not surprised that when he first got his hands on me, he wasn't paying much notice to my bone structure. Heehee...

Anyway, since I've got me some rather curvy parts, I'll never be a particularly slender gal. When I buy the 12's, I might want to buy some decent jeans. The 14's can be cheap, since I won't need to stay in them for a long time. The smallest I've ever managed to wittle down my bottom was a tight size 8, way back in the day. I don't think that I'll ever see those again. If I do, I'll be mighty surprised. I'd be wonderfully happy to make it to 10's. They would take a lot of work though, and I don't know how much damage there has been to my skin. I'm not a very elastic gal. I don't know how much can bounce back after so much trauma. I'm going to try and work off as much fat as I can though, to see how much the skin at my lower abdomen might shrink back. I might not be so concerned about it, except that I've got that wicked 6" scar bisecting my tummy. You know that skin does some pretty funky things because of scar tissue. I'll probably never be able to wear a tini-bikini, but I'm alright with that. Battle scars, and all that. :)

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Normality and Temperance

I did a bit of talking the other day about how I would like to eat like a "normal" person. Personally, I don't mind using the word "normal", though I tend to put it in quotes to show that the term doesn't exactly stand on it's own. Norms are very changeable, and everyone seems to have a different idea of what normal is. For me, eating normally is eating with temperance.




*** ***
tem·per·ance

2 a: habitual moderation in the indulgence of the appetites or passion
*** ***
There are some areas of my life where I live it up and enjoy the overflowing abundance. The love that I have for my husband and my daughter is an area where my cup runs over. I strive to be as stuffed full of joy and happiness as a person can hold. I don't think that any of that means that I need to have a plate that is overflowing or a reasonably sized dress straining at it's seams.

For myself, I'd like to be always completely full to bursting with the Holy Spirit, and immersed in God's presence. It's just gluttony to try that same thing with soda pop, pudding, and Girl Scout cookies though. That's not "normal" for me, because it is not living up to the standard that God has set. I couldn't give a rat's naked tail for what society has to say, because other people's opinions don't mean much to me in general. We're all dysfunctional, and that dysfunction seems to be exponentially multiplied when people congregate. So, the only voice that I tend to listen to is that of God. He has said quite a bit about how we should live.

My "normal" lives right there, and happens to be written all over my heart. I know what is good for my body, and how to be kind to me. I know that I should treat my body as the temple that it is, instead of cramming it full of garbage. I get a smile out of reading about the Proverbs 31, particularly where it says,"She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. " It gives me a little giggle because a couple of my family members have some inane fear that I will have arms that are "too" strong and "manly". I just laugh because it seems as though they haven't bothered looking at me. There isn't one inch of me that looks anything less than womanly. I'll never be "manly", regardless of how well sculpted my arms may become. It's all just ridiculous.

For me, normal isn't about what everyone else is doing. It is about what God says is good for us, and where I should be working to be. I am far from perfect, as is every other human being, so I'm going to make my mistakes and skin my knees. Since there are very few things that I can "overindulge" in without hurting myself, I am trying to live a temperate lifestyle. I want to cram in all of the good, and stick to a few nibbles of these things in life that can make me unhappy and unhealthy. I'm honest enough to admit that I am a glutton when it comes to many different types of things, and my eating habits are probably the most innocuous. However, my Father in heaven has big enough hands to pick me up, dust me off, and show me how to live better. He's doing the heavy lifting, so I can't take any credit for leaving behind a myriad of destructive and harmful habits. It feels good to be free of them though. Now, this food thing is top on my priority list, and I want HIS normal, God's standard.

I was talking with my husband about all of this stuff, and my past endeavors to live a healthier life. I wouldn't say that I am a yo-yo dieter, but I've lost and gained some substantial weight over the past few years. Fear and sadness are not my buddies, so I do real well until something happens, and then I just curl up into a survival mode. Unfortunately, that has meant eating whatever was easily and readily available... which hasn't done me much good. It's hard to come up with any real "umph" though, when it feels like your heart is outside your body, just a bleeding mass of flesh. My first attempt at regaining my health was sabotaged by my own bad coping skills when Grandma died. I didn't deal with my own sadness very well, and it was horrific to try and help DH through what felt like the death of his mother. His grandma did so much for him. Once we got our feet under us after that, then I dropped weight again, until I became pregnant with Ezzie. I didn't gain much weight at all while pregnant, but packed it on after we had to bury our little boy. At that point, I was so filled with self-hatred that I struggled to even care if I lived at all. Easy foods again became the call for the day, since I was a walking zombie for a long time.

I shared with DH that with all of this up and down, I am afraid that I will never just settle into a more regular and normal relationship with weight and food. I almost feel like I'm going to have a panic attack if I try to eat foods without knowing all of the numbers and measures. It's not that I'm really afraid of the food, but that I have no confidence that I know how to feed myself, because I've lived so long with disordered eating. When I was a teenager, I hardly ate. I didn't want to gain weight and have my boyfriend find me unattractive. When I did eat, I was terribly hungry and probably ate too much during those short times, which I then felt ashamed by. In my late teens, I became pregnant, and then I learned about how absolutely insane my body is when making babies. Wow. I learned to nibble constantly because it was the only way that I though I could make it through a day without crawling, vomitting, and fainting. When I was pregnant with my daughter, it was bedrest for months, and whatever was easiest for my husband to cook or leave next to my bed. It wasn't until I hit my mid 20's that I started learning about nutrition and fighting to shake off the extra weight.

I'm coming up on my 29th birthday, and I'm very aware that I've spent a solid decade trying to get back into good health. My child-bearing days are certainly behind me, and I'm looking into setting that decision into stone via some visits with a good doctor. I don't want to chance getting pregnant again, and having to try and bounce back from the awful things that it does to my body. (Don't get me wrong. I love kids and see them as blessings. I've just burried two of my children, and that is enough. ) DH says that he can help me monitor my portions, while I'm trying to *not* measure my foods as much. He knows how nervous and unsure I am, and he has promised to help me as best he can through this difficult journey. It's not all about being a certain size, or even a certain shape. I'm alright with how I am, whether I'm at this weight or whether I get down closer to where I think my "goal" might be. I would love for this food thing to be in the background though, so I can put more thought and effort into other things. I also don't want to teach my daughter to be nutty with food. I already get to bear the burden for some of her bad habits, since the poor kid acts just like me. *wink*

Aw, well, I guess it's time for me to exercise some temperance with my computer time. *chuckles* That habit is going to be hard to tackle too, but I'm sure that it will get easier as the weather gets nicer. I'm determined to spend so much time having fun outside that I no longer look see-through. I'll be so much prettier with a little golden tan, since my skin has a slight olive tint to it. The sun offers a much better glow than my computer monitor.

See you later!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Diet Toddler

Hmm... well, I'm counting my calories today. It's not that I've been doing a "bad" job, but that I'm still too new at this and more than a little worried about gaining weight. It's a strange thing to say, that I don't know how to maintain a weight. I can count calories with ease, because I always have that running total in my head. Personally, I think that it's a terrible way to live. I don't want to spend my every waking moment thinking about my meals and snacks, because that doesn't offer any more freedom than being heavier did.

Anyway, my eating has been alright, but my water intake has been horrific. I was a little higher on the scale this morning, which didn't surprise me at all. I ate some delicious bean soup for dinner yesterday, but I know that it had plenty of salt in it. There were other foods that I knew were higher in sodium, and I still didn't think to try and pare that back and drink more water. So, I am working much harder today to properly hydrate myself. I am drinking smaller amounts of water, but I am drinking more frequently. Plus, every time that I use the bathroom, I come back to the kitchen and drink another cup of water. So, I am hoping that my couple of days of "uncounted" meals won't look quite so bad on the scale after I rehydrate. I really do need to make a better effort at cutting back on the salt though.

I've been exercising, but I haven't been as diligent about writing down what I've been doing. It felt really weird to look at my little calendar and see the lack of exercise days marked on it. I've been very active lately, so I've decreased some of my exercise a little bit so that I'm not completely exhausting myself. There is a lot of work to do, trying to make the house run smoothly right now. So, I'm counting my hauling of books and heavy cleaning as exercise. I have been using the glider, biking, and lifting weights still. I'm just shooting more for 20-30 minutes of structured exercise instead of an hour. Once I get everything organized and cleaned, I'll be able to work a little harder at more formal exercise. Oh, but then there will be nicer weather- and I'm hoping to replace some gym time with outdoor activities.

For as much as I enjoy the gym, I'd like to make those type of activities more of a 3-day/week routine. Right now, I am leaning more toward getting structured exercise in nearly every day. But, during the nice weather, I want to do more. I want to ride bikes on the trails at one of the MetroParks. I want to go swimming more often, and maybe canoe through the streams and creeks that branch off from the river. I want to take my old dog for more walks and do more gardening. I just don't want to spend that time in the gym, wasting the sunshine.

I am figuring that because the weather is just beginning to change, now is a good time for me to learn how to eat like a "normal" person. I think that I am still going to log my food, but that maybe it will be sufficient enough to just have a little paper journal to write things down in. That wouldn't be counting calories, but I have so many of those numbers lodged in my brain that I may never be free of them. I just need somewhere to write things down so I don't go stupid and eat a box of cookies while claiming ignorance. I guess a paper journal would make it easier to go out and be more active, because I won't feel the need to be attached to my computer every day, just to log my food. Wow. I could go camping. *laughs* I wouldn't even need WIFI in order to calculate my breakfast. Wonder of all wonders, I could just go hiking and have fun burning off the calories instead of stressing out over the numbers.

This isn't going to be easy though. I have a bit of an obsessive issue with all of this. Like I said, I'm usually 100% "on", or I'm way off. I've spent the last 9 months going through these life changes, and wittling the extra weight off of me. I've been crawling and depending on a lot of outside things to make this journey for me, but I think that now it is time to learn how to really walk on my own. I'm sure that I will stumble and fall down a few times. I may need a couple of stitches before this is all said and done. However, I think that this is a very important part of maturing into new, sustainable habits.

I'm still not giving in to cake, cookies, and all things scary to the size of my bottom. I still have my head attached to my shoulders. I'm not saying any of this because there is a candy bar staring at me, and I want an excuse to eat it. (... not that there is a candy bar.... ) I will still eat healthy foods every day. I will still watch my portions. I will still exercise. On some days, I will still probably count calories, just to be sure that I don't allow time and laziness to distort my view of things- and my pants size. It is very difficult to do, but I need to stop holding onto my "tools" so much. Otherwise, I'm afraid that I'll have to live in this "diet land" forever.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Marching on Through March

This past week has been busy, with a capital B. I've still been exercising, though yesterday I decided that my housework was exercise enough. From the time I picked my head up off my pillow until it hit it again, I was busting my butt doing hard labor. There was furniture to move, boxes of books to unpack, and a pantry to completely clean and reorganize. I thought that carrying laundry up and down the basement stairs was going to be the death of me, but I didn't wipe out. :o )

My weight is still doing good, though I haven't been watching my diet as closely as I usually do. I'm not being careless, but when I was ready to fall asleep in my spaghetti last night, I didn't feel like weighing it. I just put a small portion on the plate and figured that I'm going to have to learn how to portion out my food without measuring every bite that enters my mouth. It's very helpful to measure things, but by not eating intuitively at all, I don't think that I'm teaching myself how to thrive outside of "diet mode". Judging by my past experiences, I seem to be either 100% "on", or I fall off the wagon and smack my face off the concrete. I'd like to learn how to live a normal life, somewhere up in the 80% "on" with enough wiggle room to not feel like logging food is an obsession.

Anyway, I'm down 1/2 lb. for now, though I'm not sure what the next few weeks are going to put me. My focus for March is going to be dramatically different from the last two months. For March, I am going to dial back my cardio to about 20 minutes per day while focusing more on strength training. Over the next two days, I will be getting my fitness area organized and ready for me, down in the basement. I need to move the bench and organize the various weight plates and hand-weights. While I'm going to still focus on eating good, wholesome food, I'm going to relax just a little about weighing everything. If it doesn't work out for me so well, I can go back to weighing food come April. So, I'm going to give the intuitive eating a try, paired with an intense strength training routine. I guess the worst that could happen is that I might end up looking like a Sumo wrestler. *chuckles* Since I've taken to replacing some of my snack-type foods with fresh fruit, I think that I'm already in a much better place to make this change. I've cut out nearly all of the nuts from my diet, just because I eat too many of them. I've kept the 60 cal. bags of popcorn, because sometimes I just need something puffy and filling to snack on, water gain or not.

Even though I plan on relaxing the measuring aspect of my dietary habits, I am going to working very hard to curb my evening meals a bit. I generally eat both a dinner and a supper, both lighter fare. We have dinner around 4:30- 5:00 p.m. and then have some kind of snack or soup around 8:00-9:00 p.m. . What I am planning to do is try and pull things back a little bit and have nothing solid after 8:30 p.m. or so. Since I tend to snack on a very regular basis, this will probably feel a bit difficult. I know that some people stop eating earlier in the evening, but I stay up pretty late. When I'm not climbing into bed until around midnight, I can't stop eating at 7 p.m. without experiencing a lot of deep hunger pangs right when I'm trying to relax into sleep. I am hoping that hot tea will help me ease through this transition.

I am looking forward to the change of pace that goes with moving to a greater focus on weight-lifting. I was beginning to feel a little fatigued with my routine, and this should shake things up a little bit. Hopefully, the added muscle will help boost my metabolism and improve the look of my body. Come next month, if I need to, I'll tighten down on my diet a little bit if I find that I'm struggling to drop fat along with gaining the muscle. After watching a good show on obesity and seeing how Sumo wrestlers have mastered the art of building mass while retaining muscle, I am even more determined to change some of my habits. That is the main impetus behind cutting back my last meal of the day, providing plenty of digestion time before bed. While I admire the awesome strength of those guys, I'd rather not have their shape. Watching that show, I began to see a few similarities in their training habits and my own habits- things that won't contribute to slimming my body down as much as I'd like.

With this weight-lifting push through March, and a strict diet through April to go with my exercise, I am hoping to push down into the next size in jeans before the end of May. It is becoming increasingly important to me to get into size 14 jeans by my "fit-iversary". Ultimately, I would love to be in size 8/10 jeans, if my husband doesn't complain too much. He already makes funny comments about me exercising so much that my butt will fall off. We'll see. I guess there are exercises to make one's bottom larger, while fat loss allows me to shrink the rest. It's too bad that there aren't exercises to build one's bosom! *laughs* I'll have to be content with working my pecs, and trying to not let my body fat percentage drop too low. I'm not into fake boobs at all, so I'd like to keep as much of my own as possible. I'm afraid that if I don't, my husband may start force-feeding me chocolate cake in order to keep me squishy enough in the right places. Heehee.... Boy, I wish they would find a way to suck the fat out of my tummy and inject it into my boobs. That would make us all equally happy. lol