Friday, September 30, 2011

Scars.

I don’t have many scars. I wasn’t a very adventurous child. I never had any major injuries. I fall down, fall down the stairs, fall up the stairs, trip over nothing, walking into walls and doors, and other random things but I’ve never been seriously injured. I’ve gone to the ER once… That was when I was 29. I had the flu and was dehydrated. After a couple bags of IV fluids, I went home.

My first surgery was one summer during college… I had my wisdom teeth out. My second was when I was 26 or 27 and I had my tonsils out. Both were routine outpatient procedures. Nothing serious.

I think I have maybe two scars and I don’t know where they came from. One is on one of my fingers and one is somewhere on my leg. They’re so insignificant that I would have to look to find them.
I have scars though. These scars are not the kind that result from injuries.

I have emotional scars…Lots of them.

I was dumped one too many times for another girl…Usually was cheated on. Enter insecurity and trust issues. I still battle those, although I’m getting better about the insecurity. My ability to trust could probably use some more work.

I also tend to question people and their motives. I’ve been the “butt” of a joke or a hundred at different times in my life. Generally I’d cry, in secret, about these.

“Never let ‘em get to you…”

I kept a lot of my emotions inside. Who wants to admit that someone teased them, used them, or was completely disgusted by them…Because they’re fat?

I think that when I started to get fat I just kept getting fatter because I held so much in.
After all of this being dumped and rejected I started to have a bit of a fear of rejection. I was always quiet and shy (even before being dumped/rejected I was afraid it’d happen). I got quieter and more shy.

Well, at least until I turned 21. Then I discovered the power of alcohol. It really does lower inhibitions. And man, even at 300 pounds I thought I was a sexy, sexy thang. Alcohol softened the blow of rejection.
However, this binge drinking (you know, college…) lead to even more weight gain. Naturally after drinking, my friends and I would go to an all night restaurant (ohhhh Little Chef and Dinner Bell, how I don’t miss thee) or pick up some fast food. Thanks Taco Bell for that whole 4th meal idea. I’m so glad you’re encouraging bad eating habits.

 Insert funny story: Last time I was at TB after the bar (where I may have had 3 drinks - that’s a lot for me) I had “a side of lettuce.”  “Yes, that’s it. Just a cup of lettuce please. Oh and a water cup.” I got some weird looks from the mass of college students scarfing down tacos and burritos and such. I couldn’t do it. Not one bite. I had originally ordered a taco but stared it it, picked the lettuce off, then asked for my side of lettuce. This was less than a year into this journey.

Oh! How times have changed!!

Anyway…Drinking…College…The next day was often cured with hangover food sometime after wakening and coming to life. This generally included Chinese take-out or McDonald’s. Sometimes other places but those seemed to be the main ones. Often this would be the only meal of the day, with some popcorn or chips or something at night. Yeah, that’s not healthy.

I’ve been harassed a time or two. For some reason I tend to “infect” some guys. Some don’t take the hint and won’t go away. I’ve hidden in closets, turned off light and pretended to be asleep. One time I got new windows that I thought were locked. I never doubled checked them…They weren’t. That was the night one of these guys refused to go away. I got my ass kicked. Some day I’ll share pics of the bruises. It’s hard to admit to that (I mean, I have my freaking MSW that is NOT supposed to happen to people like ME…HA! Happens everywhere, kids). I think I have the strength to post the pictures, but it’s hard…. Instead of thinking of this as a horrible nightmare, the pictures make it real.

That night was probably the worst night of my life, regarding something that happened to ME. I felt trapped. I tried to escape my own home…My safe place…A place that this intruder (he was not a stranger) took over. I couldn’t leave. I was thrown around, pushed down, and drug across my floor. I screamed and cried. I was honestly terrified that I might die. I had no idea what was going to happen to me.

Luckily one time when I tried to leave, I managed to get close enough to the door to open it, someone heard me scream for help.

Fear; now that can leave one hell of a scar.

I moved home (to my parents’) for a while after that. I was afraid to be home alone. I had to take Xanax  (only .25 mg 1-2 PRN…lol…I feel like I’m at work. PRN means as needed) to sleep and sometimes that didn’t relax me enough (even when I took the second dose).

This fear is not completely gone. I still cringe if I feel like someone is coming at me in a threatening way. I sometimes tremble if I feel like someone is “yelling” at me (this does not always mean a raised voice). Sometimes I feel like I could cry. For some odd reason, my dark basement freaks me out a little…I have to shut and lock the door super quick after I turn the light off.

DON’T get me wrong.. I’m not some sad, depressed person on the verge of suicide or something. I’m not. I’m actually quite happy… Happier than I’ve been in years.

I’m just saying these are things that led to my scars.

Scars. We all have them. They’re different. Some you can see, some you can’t. The ones you can see look different. The ones you can’t see feel different.

Currently my two biggest physical scars are not scars that resulted from past injuries. They’re scars that are resulting from losing so much weight. 175 pounds is a heck of a lot of weight to lose…Naturally something will be left behind.

My scars are my skin and my stretch marks.

If you’ve read past blogs, you know all about my skin (which by the way I’m less obsessed over in recent days).

My stretch marks came from gaining so much weight. I was chubby as a child but obesity didn’t hit until I was older. Then came morbid obesity. MORBID. What a word. How can hearing “morbidly obese” not scare more people? It terrified me. MORBID…That meant I was killing myself…Slowly and without intent.
As one would expect with gaining so much weight, I got stretch marks. Those damn things don’t go away. Lovely. Now that I’m smaller I still have them. They look different. I think that’s because of the skin that they’re on. Instead of being long shiny lines stretched across large areas of fat, they’re weird and rigid looking.

These scars remind me of not only who I was physically but where I was mentally and emotionally.  These physical scars go along with my emotional scars. If my emotional scars were still major issues (then they wouldn’t really be scars), I don’t think I’d have these physical scars.

I’ll take them. I’m happy with them because I can see how far I’ve come. I hate them because of what I let myself become. Even if I have surgery to remove skin, I’ll have physical scars…. They’ll be from surgery; from surgery I had because I once was fat.

No matter what I do, I’ll have scars.

Scars remind us of who we once were, what we once did, what we’ve learned, what we’ve been through, and who we’ve become.

My scars show the weakness that once lived inside me. I can look at them and smile because I’m no longer a weak, timid little girl. I’m strong.

I’ll never forget who I once was. I’ll always remember how I changed my life.

“And our scars remind us that the past is real…”

XOXO

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Dear Saboteurs,

I know that your sabotage is unintentional. I know that you don’t realize that the little things you do are sabotaging my efforts. I have a hard time telling you “no” even though I really need to learn to do so.

To those of you who tell me to stop worrying so much about my weight….

I know that you love me dearly and want me to be relaxed and at ease. Generally, I am. IF I make a comment about being bummed that I didn’t lose a pound or something, it does NOT mean that I am stressing about it. It just means that I’m annoyed that I’m staying the same. If I stay the same I’m not hard on myself. Because you love me and I love you, I feel safe venting to you. However, when you tell me to “relax” and “stop worrying” about it, it makes it hard. I don’t want to vent to you. You make me want to close communication regarding my weight. That’s not a good thing. If I want to call myself “fat” because I’m having a bad day, just let me do it.I know that you don’t know how to deal with it or how to best support me, but just let me go. Don’t tell me I’m being ridiculous. Don’t tell me not to worry. Just tell me that it’s okay to feel that way; everyone has their bad days. I know you want to, but don’t try to “fix” it. You can’t. If I’m having a horrible, self-loathing kind of day, just let me.

Those of you who think that I’m fine right where I am…

I’m not. You may think I look “fine.” I don’t agree. This is just because I want to be in a different place than I am. I have a different goal than what you see. I think that maybe because I’ve lost so much weight already, I look like I’m good where I am. I don’t think I do. It’s really just a difference of opinion regarding what I currently look like. I might be “fine” as you say, but I just don’t agree with you. No matter how many times I’m told that I’m “fine” and have “accomplished so much” and that I don’t need to “worry” about it, just doesn’t matter. I’m going to keep working toward my goal no matter who thinks I’m “fine” and I’ll stop when I’m ready, even if someone else thinks I still look disgustuing. “Fine” is something that we all define differently. So, thank you for thinking I look “just fine” where I am. In thinking about it, I probably do like “fine.” However, I want to look my best, not just “fine.”

Appearance aside, the truth is that according to my BMI, I’m overweight. I have around ten more pounds to lose before I am at the top of the “healthy” range. I want to be “healthy,” according to BMI standards. I don’t want to be at the TOP of that range. I’d like to be nestled comfortably within that range, so that if I go out of town and eat higher sodium foods than normal, the couple pounds of water retention won’t boost me back into the “overweight” category.

The definition of healthy can vary depending on what you’re looking at… I workout and I eat healthy. To some, that means I’m already healthy. Sure, I have healthy habits, but I want to have a healthy BMI so that by medical standards, I am healthy. For my height, I am still carrying around extra, unhealthy weight. I will keep working until I’m, in my opinion, comfortably healthy.

Also, no matter how many times you say it, I’m not going to “turn sideways and disappear.” I thank you for the compliment about how much weight I’ve lost. I’m not however in any danger of disappearing should I turn sideways. I’m also in no danger of “blowing away” in the wind. I especially love this when people thinner than I am say it to me. I appreciate your compliments SO MUCH.

I just have no intention of stopping now.

If your weight is a concern of yours, do not tell me that I’m fine and I can “stop” now. My weight has nothing to do with you. If you don’t like that I may weigh less than you do, then do something about YOUR weight. Worrying about mine and where I am at is not going to stop you. The truth is, I’m going to be healthy. Recently it has been taking a little longer than I’d like but I’m going to get there. Apparently the rumor about the more you lose the harder it is, is true. When I do get there, I’m going to stay there. If you have an issue about your own weight, you need to address it. Don’t tell me that I should stop losing. I have goals and I’m working toward them. I’m determined, motivated, and I’m pretty dang competitive. If you want me to stop losing because you don’t want me to get to where you are (or even lower), that makes me want to do it even more. I guess I should say thank you for the extra bit of motivation. I honestly don’t care what you weigh. I don’t want to compare myself to you. You should probably stop worrying so much about my weight and you should probably stop comparing yourself to me. I’m not you and you’re not me.

To those of you who try to do what’s best for me (meaning what you feel is best)...

Please stop it! I appreciate that you are concerned about me. However, I too am concerned about me. I have done much research about what I need and what I don’t need. I count values like calories, carbs, fat, and sodium. I know what I want to eat and what I do not want to eat. If I prefer to load up on my “freggies” then that’s what I will do. I eat carbs in moderation and most come from my fruits. I do enjoy a cookie or something now and then, generally when I’m not at home because I refuse to buy that stuff.

So, person who does me the huge favor of picking a few things up for me at the store…I cannot tell you how much I appreciate you picking things up for me at the store. This is especially helpful on weekends that I’m out of town. Although you are doing me this much appreciated favor….When I say DON’T buy me that, I mean it!! I’m NOT going to eat it. When I ask for certain things, please get them…Don’t ignore them and get what you think I need instead.

And the rest of you who worry about what I’m eating, stop it! I am getting my nutrients. I’m watching what I’m eating so that I’m in suggested ranges for what my body needs. I am not starving. I am not malnourished. I do not have an eating disorder like anorexia or bulimia. I’m not taking extreme measures to reach my goals. I am doing it the healthy way, as I have done all along. Perhaps some of you should worry about what you’re putting into your mouth rather than worrying about what’s going into mine.

To those of you who think I’m super human… I AM NOT.

I have bad days. I get off-track sometimes. Doesn’t everyone have a bad day, in some way, every so often? I DO TOO. I have splurges that last for a day rather than a meal. Sometimes I go away for the weekend and come back 3 pounds heavier. This is typically water weight due to increased sodium and it goes back down within a few days, but still, it’s different and out of my normal routine. No, I’m not gaining fat (the amount of cal needed to make a pound of fat is way more than I’d be able to eat within a couple day span). I may stay within my calorie range, but the unhealthier foods have more sodium and such, soooo….up up up I go. Luckily I get back on track and work hard and then I go down down down, and down a little more.
Sometimes I have bad days in general. Sometimes I just FEEL hungrier than normal. I might crave things I don’t usually eat. I may eat more calories than normal. I used to beat myself up about this. Now I’ve learned to accept it. Telling myself I’m a fat, horrible cow doesn’t do me any good. It just makes me feel bad. Now? I account for it and get back on track. Oddly, sometimes our bodies need that. Sometimes that stimulates a faster loss. Of course if it’s just water weight, it’s not like it’s fat, but still, I’ve had times where I’ve lost the water and kept going.

I don’t have special super powers. I don’t take pills. I eat. Sometimes too much – you know to the point of feeling too full. Sometimes it’s something not healthy. Overall though… I’m healthy. During this whole process what’s what I’ve done…. Eat healthy and exercise. Sometimes people don’t like to hear that. They want to know the easy way to do it. Honestly, there isn’t an easy way. It’s a change in your lifestyle. Forever. You may try and fail over and over again before you’re successful. I don’t know what will do it for you, but you have to reach a point where suddenly you have no other choice.

You just have to make the change.

XOXO

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Acceptance.

This blog could go SO many ways with a title like that. Naturally, because this blog is about this little journey of mine, it’s about me. However, it is not about self-acceptance. I accepted myself for who I am long ago. And I kinda like who she is! :)

What I am talking about is that I THINK (that’s a big think because, you know, we all have our days)…
I finally realized that I’m not “fat” anymore.

Well, not totally anyway.

I’ve know I have muscle. I’ve known my bones stick out. I don’t always see myself as I am. I think that’s common. Many of us focus on the bad things that we want to change. But this evening when I looked in the mirror, and my arms were in the correct position, I stopped. I just stopped and looked…At my arm. The right one, to be exact.

“Woah… My arm is actually kinda small. When did that happen?”
I spend so much time focused on my extra skin that’s hanging there, that I don’t always see what’s under it. I often notice the obvious things; my collar bone, my spine, my ribs, my “little girly hands” (not what I call them lol), and my wrists… But my arms… Let alone the part of my arm that’s heading into upper arm skin territory? No way.

Tonight I thought “that looks like a skinny girl’s arm. And it’s on my body? For real?”
I love these little moments of disbelief. I love discovering new parts of myself that seem small. It feels so good every time I recognize something “new” about myself. It’s times like these that make me realize all that I’ve accomplished. It’s so easy to forget and focus on what’s left to do. I honestly cherish these moments because they’re such a powerful reminder of where I’ve been.

Tonight acceptance was about… The fact that I am actually small underneath that skin. And no this isn’t a rant about how annoying it is. This is me looking past it and at what is really there. Just because not everyone can see it, at least not all the time, doesn’t mean it isn’t there. Just because my brain and my eyes don’t always agree doesn’t mean that I look as bad as I seem to think.
Tonight I am accepting that parts of me are thin…. Probably more parts than I see. I know they’re there, and I love that they’re there.

On another note, the rotten plateau that I had been at decided to finally let me break it. I thought I would be stuck between 165 and 170 total pounds lost forever. But! I’m not!
After Labor Day weekend I went back up a few pounds (thank you, Sir Sodium, you evil, evil little man). I’ve never really gotten away from being healthy (since I started this, I mean). Sure a splurge here and there has been okay. I’m not going to deprive myself… I do treat myself. It’s important to do that. Most of the time those treats don’t taste as good as I thought they might, or I can handle only very small amounts because the sugar or salt makes me want to fall over. However, even a small taste before it turns gross is good.

So…Labor Day weekend… I indulged in Sprinkles cupcakes, good Chicago pizza from one of my favorite downtown spots - along with a glass of wine, two beers!, half of a hot dog, and some nachos, oh and some BBQ food. Yes, that, my friends, was like a sodium diet. HOLY COW! I did watch amounts of what I ate, and am sure that I had a few more calories than normal but not so many that I gained 3 pounds of fat. Also, as soon as I got back into my normal routine, those 3 pounds went away (within a couple days of my normalness - I love inventing words!).

Ever since then… I’ve been on a downward spiral. Well, not me, my weight! This is  a GOOD downward spiral! I’ve been consistently losing weight since then (yes, I am aware it’s only been a few weeks). However, after being stuck in one weight range for almost 4 months, I’m already down into the middle of the next! Since my high weight the Tuesday after labor day, I’m down 8 pounds. As I said, that was probably due to sodium (oh and not as much water as normal) because I quickly went back to where I had been prior to the weekend. But! I’ve continued to lose… It’s been about 5 pounds (as of this morning) compared to my weight prior to the LDW fest. Not bad for two weeks! Actually, that’s a pretty healthy rate of loss. I hope it continues!!! I will be continuing my pattern of increased workout time and a few less calories. It seems to be paying off. I guess sometimes you need a splurge to make your body realize that it’s supposed to be working with you, not just content to stay as is!

This happy rate of loss over the last couple weeks has me thinking that I just may reach my weight loss goal by my birthday. It’s only 17 pounds away… Why does that sound so much better than 20, 22, or 25? It’s only a few pounds but, wow, can that make a difference. Two more pounds and I’ll be the same weight as my Mom, or at least where I knew she had been a couple months ago. I honestly cannot remember when I weighed the same as my Mom.

The sad news? I thought that, because in the past I seemed to be going through a size every 15 pounds or so, is that I’m still the same size. I’ll be the same size two pounds from now. Maybe in another 10 pounds I’ll be down a size again. Who knows!

What I do know is that I’m happy and healthy….And that means so much.

Friday, September 16, 2011

ThE MirACLe DieT tHat WorkED foR ME....

…Was not a diet at all.

I should start by saying that this should have a disclaimer because I’ll probably mention something “disgusting” relating to a bodily function or two. If you’re like me, that just made you giggle with anticipation of the grossness that is to come. It won’t be that severe (or fun).

What did I do? I’m pretty sure I’ve said this already but… I changed my eating habits and I started exercising. I revamped my plan, as needed, along the way. Basically? I did what physicians, nutritionists, and all other wellness “experts” have been recommending for years.

There were no magic pills. The only pills I take are for medical issues like allergies and female things. There were no super fabulous shakes. I don’t drink any juices while fasting from food. I eat meals; usually six of them. Every day. I eat a small breakfast, mid-morning meal (some would call it a snack), lunch, a mid-afternoon meal (again, some would call this a snack), and dinner. I feel like I’m eating constantly. I track my calories, fat, protein, carbs, and sodium.

I do not wear any strange contraptions that giggle my fat around while attempting to remove it. I don’t use strange tools that if I were to let go of, they’d go flying in the air, possibly causing injury to someone. I’m accident-prone enough on my own. I track my exercise. I wear a heart rate monitor so that I can monitor my heart rate, obviously, and see how many calories I’ve burned. I’ve invested in fitness equipment.

NOW…This isn’t to say that I have not tried different methods in the past. I have. I honestly believe that those different, unhealthy (IMO) methods were what lead me to my highest weight.

Let’s see…

Pills. There once was a time, back in high school, that I hid Dexatrim in my glove compartment. My parents found it. It was thrown away. Like that stopped me? I just bought more. Sadly, I was 16 when I began this process of making myself fat. At 16 all I could see is that I wasn’t “perfect.”  I did not resemble the obese cow I made myself out to be in my mind.

I’ve also taken Metabolife, Hydroxycut, and Xenical. Xenical is a prescription med that’s very similar to Alli. It does the same thing.

Here’s where we get graphic…

Xenical is the pill I took for the shortest period of time. Honestly, taking that thing was horrible. I couldn’t have one “splurge” day without suffering the consequences. I’d be stuck in the bathroom for a while, or at least making frequent trips there. One of the side effects was “anal leakage.” Luckily I never experienced that, but I also didn’t want to risk it. Seriously? I’m a grown-up. I don’t want to poo myself, even if it’s this oil that’s a strange shade of orange. Oh and the oil… When I’d have to run for the bathroom, it was generally this oil that I had to…. dispose of. I thought something was very wrong with me the first time it happened. Orange oil, just floating there? And nothing else? That couldn’t be normal. Uh, pretty sure it wasn’t. Since my fat was being blocked, that’s all it was. Ingested fat. Gross. I would been afraid to have seen what may have happened if I had eaten a lot of fat (I was purchasing low-fat, non-fat, and reduced-fat products).

Drinky-drinks. Slimfast was the only drink I tried. I hid the cans in the trunk of my car. How awesome that no refrigeration was required!! I was in college at this point and still felt the need to hide it. I knew my parents wouldn’t agree and didn’t want to deal with the “drama.” I also tried those bars for my in-between meal snacks.

Then there was the super awesome lifetime movie that made me think “oooohhh I should try that for a little while.” I totally overlooked that the main character had an eating disorder. Less than 500 calories a day is NOT enough. This was a horrible idea. After a few months I had done nothing but slow my metabolism, damaging it more than I already had. Thankfully this didn’t last for too long, although when I found my journal, I realized it was longer than I thought.

I’ve also tried diets, and purchased the books… Atkins. South Beach. There was another one but I can’t remember what it was. The blood type diet was recommended at a doc visit once. I didn’t follow-up with that one.

I haven’t tried the grapefruit diet. Or the soup diet. I haven’t tried acai for weight loss, although because it’s natural it might be a good supplement. I also have not, and will not, try this whole hCG fad. Well, in reality, no fads. I know what to do and it’s to be healthy.

Oh hCG…Seriously…WHAT is up with that? People are putting the pregnancy hormone in their bodies to lose weight. Um…No thanks.

The best part? In order to lose weight while using hCG, you’re supposed to follow a 500 calorie a day diet. Apparently the hCG curbs those awful hunger pangs that you get when you’re hungry. When you are REALLY hungry and NEED to eat.

 PEOPLE!!! 500 calories a day?? THAT’S FAR too little! An active woman should be eating at least 1200. I believe the lowest for a man is 1600, but don’t quote me on that. I don’t pay as much attention to male info since this is a personal quest and I’m not a male.

From the research I’ve seen, this hCG diet is really nothing more than starving yourself. If you want to severely restrict your calories to the point that you’re eating so few that you’re headed to the malnutrition zone, you may want to think again.

If you’d like to learn more about what eating only 500 calories a day for a prolonged period of time looks like, go check out some eating disorder images on Google. You’ve gotta eat enough calories to be healthy. You’ve gotta eat enough calories to SURVIVE.

Not eating enough calories can also damage your mental health. If you’re not eating enough calories, you can get grrrroooouuuuuccchhhhhyyy to the max. This could result in decreased socialization. Who wants to hang out with Debbie Downer or Oscar the Grouch all the time? Being around someone negative and possibly mean isn’t fun. Enough decreased socialization and bad moods and you might start to become depressed.

Luckily I have a Mom who is a nurse and I work in health caresetting. I’ve been able to pick up a lot of knowledge through work as well as my personal research. I understand that eating too little will cause your lab values to be out of whack which can really mess up your system. Also, if you don’t eat and drink enough, you don’t poop enough. This can cause constipation. If constipation lasts too long, you’ll probably have bowel woes for quite a while. Impactions and obstructions? No thanks. Some methods may cause the opposite problem. Loose, watery stools. Frequently. You may not make it to the bathroom. You may start to get what’s like diaper rash on your bum.

Of course, the lure of losing UP TO 30 pounds in a month sucks people in. It’s presented in a pretty package that seems like the most wonderful idea ever. It’s not. Honestly, if you do it for too long it could result in some serious medical problems. You might end up hospitalized. Or you may even have something happen to you that leaves you dead. I've said it in an earlier blog but people tend to miss that UP TO part. I’ve seen this with exercise DVDs and such too. Just because something is advertising that you’ll loose up to 20 pounds in a month doesn’t mean you will. UP TO could be ten pounds, five pounds, one pound, or no pounds. “Results not Typical” is far too often in that tiny print that hardly anyone can see so unless they’re looking for it, they’ll probably miss it.

Sure, in the end the obesity will kill you too, but probably later rather than sooner (but no one knows for sure). Obviously I can’t predict how or when or what will happen, because contrary to popular belief I do not have that Social Worker Magic Crystal Ball. Also? My Social Worker Magic Wand has yet to make it’s way into my hands. I’d love to “bippity boppity boo” someone on the head and make everything wonderful for them. Unfortunately that doesn’t exist.

It is my belief that in the end, changing your habits is the only thing that will have lasting effects. Where does weight loss surgery play into this? Well, since physicians have their patients begin to lose weight and change their habits BEFORE surgery, and they must continue after surgery (unless they want to gain some back), this is also a lifestyle change. You don’t just go under the knife and then go back to eating fast food three days a week and drinking a six pack on Friday night. You also cannot expect to lay on the couch, with your only exercise being trips to and from the fridge and reaching for the remote. Basically, from my understanding, surgery helps with the loss but the patient has to have some responsibility too. Like with anything, you can’t expect that someone or something else will do the work for you.

So you want to lose weight? Talk to your physician (or FNP, or PA-C, even checking in with a nurse, etc.) before you do too much. It really is important to have a medical professional on board so that he/she can monitor your progress and what you’re doing. Dietitians are also helpful. Personal trainers might be awesome for some people too. You’ll need support of others because to do it, and really do it, takes work. You’re going to have to change your life. Talk to your physician before you take any pills, supplements, hormones, etc. to promote weight loss. You just may learn that there are some risks that are very scary.

Can you drink shakes, take hormones, and pop pills every day for the rest of your life? If you don’t, it’s likely that you’ll gain some, all, or even more, weight back. This really isn’t a diet or even just an exercise program. Both are key factors. Both involve lifestyle changes that must be made.

Given the choice between doing what might seem faster and easier, or doing what’s healthy, I’ll chose healthy. Every. Single. Time. I encourage you to do the same. I also hope that for many of you it isn’t just a matter of dropping some pounds. After a while, I hope that you’re bitten with the health bug. I hope that you experience runner’s high (or whatever), satisfaction from sore muscles, and the awesome feeling of accomplishment that goes along with changing your life.

Here’s to happy, healthy living!!

XOXO

(We are FINALLY current; blog from 9/15/11).

I Will be Shot....

This title goes along with a previous blog; no I am not going to be shot with a gun, arrow, or any other sort of weapon.

I have decided… I will be shot - with a camera.

I blogged about how a photographer was wanting to do a photo shoot with me. I had been waiting until I got to my ideal weight/shape/whatever. I decided that I, for sure, am going to do one now.

Why wait?

There’s really no reason. AND I will do it again when I get to where I want to be… Which will hopefully be next summer!

This will of course depend on the continuing skin saga. I am seriously considering putting myself through surgery. I’m not a fan. I’ve had two surgeries in my life (my wisdom teeth and my tonsils). Those were both outpatient. This would be inpatient for at least a few days, but from what I’ve learned, likely longer. Yikes. I’m terrified of a hospital stay, especially because my Mom is a nurse and a dang good one! I know that any nurse who has to deal with me will be measured up to my Mom and, of course, no one is as good as she is! She’s my Mom…Obviously I’m gonna think that!

Anyway, back to the topic at hand… The shoot.

As soon as she is available, I’m going to do it. I’m kind of excited about it being fall, or almost fall, because I can wear more fall-ish outfits. These means I don’t have to expose too much of the skin. I always thought when I finally had a shoot done, I’d be ready to pose and smile while wearing skimpy little things. Not quite yet! But — In the future for sure!!!

I decided to do this shoot before hearing another super flattering comment today. I received another message telling me how great I look/how well I’ve done and asking how I did it. This person told me I looked like a model. Yay!

I’ve heard that a few times in the last year or so (and I’ve lost 40-45 pounds since the first time!) and honestly… I do not get tired of hearing it. I mean, seriously, who wouldn’t like to be told that they look that good?!

I don’t always see the positives. I sometimes (haha too often) focus on what still needs work. It’s so easy to forget about how far I’ve come and look at the road that still lies ahead.

I’ve said it before but…. Your encouraging and kind words, supportive comments, and statements about me looking so awesome keep me going. If I’m having a bad day and just do not want to work out, I sometimes look at FB and read what’s been said. It’s like now I have this little following, and, surely I cannot disappoint!

Now I’m going to take my slightly inflated ego and go do something productive for a bit. Something that doesn’t involve me looking at myself in the mirror… Or any other reflective surface. No really, I do that ALL THE TIME. Have I blogged about that before? If not, I should. It’s honestly just a habit. Although the day I noticed myself checking out my shadow, I thought for a second I may have a problem. I quickly decided that I do not. This is not something new, since losing so much weight. This is something that I’ve done for years. One of my cousins does the same thing. We blame all the mirrors our Nonie had in the house growing up. I mean, if you’re used to seeing your reflection all the time, it becomes second nature to just look!
Again, thanks to all of you for the love and support you’ve given me. There have been times I thought I might break, and a simple comment has pushed me. Now I LIKE to push myself on (most of ) those days.

However, every now and then I need a little extra push.

Now to quote a song from one of my favorites….

“Mister photographer, I think I’m ready for my close-up. Tonight make sure you catch me from my good side; pick one…”                                            
(Britney - “Kill the Lights”).

XOXO

Sometimes you HAVE to Let Go (of the bad things).

 I have had yet another realization about my obsessions with weight and skin. No, this is not going to be another blog where I discuss how much I think that my skin (the extra stuff) is gross. This is actually a somewhat healthy, oh look there’s that light bulb above her head, kind of blog.
Lately I’ve been a tad obsessed with my weight. Again. I go through periods where it doesn’t bother me, as long as I’m losing a little, or even if I’m staying the same. I do not tolerate any little gains well.
That being said - I KNOW that there are many things that cause weight to fluctuate; up and down. I have fluke weights now and then and I realize that’s what they are. This has happened with both “gains” and “losses.” I also KNOW that lasting loss takes time. And that the closer you are to a healthy weight, the harder it is to lose it. I could go on and on about the things that I already know (but that people point out anyway - sometimes even mentioning them doesn’t stop people from telling me what I already know), but I have more important things to write about.

I find it somewhat funny that I’m so concerned with numbers. I am not such a fan of numbers. Numbers generally mean math. Math reminds me of school and the horror that came with math class. The “I’m stupids,” the tears, the mean things I said to my parents when they tried to help. I didn’t like it. AT ALL. I may even go as far as to say that I HATED it. Part of that was because it wasn’t easy for me. If something couldn’t be done well I tried to avoid it. I didn’t want to put myself in a position of being unable to be one of the best, or in my mind “perfect.” I’ve always had this sense of needing to be perfect… Which has resulted in past self-esteem, self-image, and weight issues. Funny…Everywhere else in my life I worked my tail off to try to be perfect and yet when it came to weight… Epic fail. It’s the one area I allowed myself to be out of control. Well, that and math.

I’m much more of a creative kind of individual and math was lost on me. Now, giving me something to read, write, or create and I’ll give you a masterpiece. Especially the writing.

It’s quite comical that I find myself so obsessed with numbers these days.

I honestly don’t know that I’m going to be able to lose much more weight. I honestly believe that the skin that’s just hanging around has a lot to do with it.

After doing some research, I’ve learned that in terms of pounds, lots can be removed during surgery. One surgeon posted that on average, in someone with a significant weight loss, he removes about 20 pounds of skin.

20 pounds.

About 20 pounds is my final goal weight.

It’s possible that the reason I’m having such a hard time losing this last 20 pounds is because of the skin. I mean think about it… The skin can’t just go away. It spent years being filled out with fat. It’s not just going to jump off my body and say “I never want to see you again.” No. It’s just going to hang there. And I do mean hang. I’m not bold enough to post pictures of the damage under the clothing but, take my word for it, it just hangs out. Not pretty. Not important, though, either.

If I lose 20 more pounds, and then have my skin removed… I’ll be smaller than I’d like to be. Heck, if I have more than 20 pounds of skin, I could be under where I want to be.

I have no way of knowing how many pounds of skin (that I don’t need) are on my body. I think that a surgeon could give me an estimate based on my appearance and his or her experience, but I won’t know for sure until the day it’s gone.

So, my reasons for wanting my skin gone are not only because it’s ugly. It droops and it’s got funky lines running through it. I’ve known that the skin obviously contributes to my weight, and that it’s possible that I could be lighter than I weigh without it. I knew that it could be a decent amount of poundage.

Despite knowing all of that I didn’t allow that idea to really connect with my obsession with my weight. I think I knew on some level but it didn’t really fully sink in until today.

My hope is that knowing this will help me to not be so obsessed with losing weight. I’m healthy. THAT is where my priority should be. I eat healthy, with a treat now and then, and I exercise. I’ve given myself a longer life. I breathe easier. I’m not stressing out my knees with extra weight. My health IS my priority and I’ve done well. I’ve accomplished a lot; something I never knew I had the strength to do. Despite my annoyances and obsessions, my mental health has improved as well as my physical health. I know that in some blogs it may not sound like it, and some days I don’t feel it, but I really do love myself. SO. MUCH. I especially love this body… It can run, bike, swim, jump, hike, etc… One of these days I may even attempt a cartwheel or handstand or something. :)

As far as my appearance… When I move the skin the right way, I have some pretty nice muscle definition. If I move the right way, you can see my sternum under my chest. My spine sticks out. If I do a side bend, my ribs show. Honestly? Without the skin, I’m probably “thin” enough.

I think it’s time to accept that the scale isn’t going to move like it once did. NO matter how hard I fight and how much I push myself, it just cannot move as fast as I’d like it to. If skin has as much to do with my weight as I believe, there’s nothing I can do. I need to be okay with that.

I’ve realized that for a while but because I can’t know “FOR SURE” how much weight is skin, I still focus on loss and work for it. And that’s okay. It’s the pressure I put on myself and what I let it do to me when it’s just not happening how I’d like it to that’s the problem.

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

The scale doesn’t own me. I own it. I need to break my strong attachment to it. It’s seriously become an addiction. Just like my fascination with my skin. These things are unhealthy because of the extent of my obsession.

I’m healthy, happy, and have a lot of things going for me. Why be obsessed with something so small? It’s silly.

It’s funny how feeling tired or emotional can change your (well, my) mood so much. A few days ago I wanted to cry as I blogged. Today? I’m happy. I’m feeling strong. I’m ready to accept the me that I’ve become and try to learn that it’s okay to not know exactly how much of my weight is skin. In the end it doesn’t really matter. It doesn’t make me who I am…. But I’m still “overweight” by BMI standards. I really want a healthy BMI. My skin may not allow me to do that. What can I Do? Accept it. That’s about it. Until one day I decide to get surgery. At this point, I’m sure I will.

Why?

I’m young. And honestly, aside from wanting a healthy BMI, I want to show off what I’ve done. Yup, I want my body to brag. I want to wear a bikini and look good. It’s kinda hard to tuck my skin into a little bit of fabric, like I do my jeans. I’d also really like to not have skin fly all over when I run. That’s annoying. I want to be a certain size…Because I JUST DO. Not because anyone else is telling me I have to be or I am not good enough if I’m not (not even me). It’s just something I want.

I’m in a good place right now. I’m going to TRY like heck to accept my current weight and not push myself so hard. Even if, at this moment, I just thought “but another 2 pounds would be good”.” That would put me in the next set of 10s, where I have so desperately wanted to be for the last few months. This is what I’ve been pushing so hard to achieve. That extra stress just isn’t healthy.

Most importantly… The parts of me that truly matter have only gotten better. Those are the parts that you can’t see when you look at me, but that some of you see in the things that I do. Kindness, compassion, empathy, love, being healthy…. Those are the things that matter most.

XOXO

I'll Judge You and You Judge Me.

My previous blog got me thinking about how we judge others. This isn’t directly tied to health, fitness, or my journey to become healthy, but it has had me reflecting on ways to become a better person.

So. Judging. We do it all the time. ALL OF US. If there is a person in this world who says that he/she does not judge, I’d feel that he/she is a liar… Or can walk on water, which I’d love to see.
We judge based on…

Physical appearance. Looks. Sexual orientation. Taste in music. Television preferences. Movie preferences. Career. Financial status. Social status…. Both of which tie in with other things like what kind of car someone drives, where they shop, the jewelry that they wear, what kind of cell phone/laptop/MP3 player or other technological stuff that they own. We judge based on education. Level of intelligence. Wit. Charm. We judge others based on ourselves. We judge ex’s new significant others; and think “what in the world can he/she possibly see in THAT?” Or we judge current significant others’ ex’s… “Wow… You went from that thing to me? That’s not just an upgrade. That’s like an upgrade and a half!” “Okay, so we dated. Now he’s dating HER? What the hell is wrong with ME?” Or “that’s his/her ex? Wow… Am I less than what I believe I am? Because, really, how could we even be in the same category, or be someone else’s type? There’s no way. I’m not like that nasty thing.” "Dude. YOU'RE the guy dating my ex? Damn, she downgraded." Basically? We judge based on anything… Probably things that we either don’t agree with or out of feelings of insecurity (I’ve noticed this is often in relationship situations) or jealousy. For example because I was a fairly spoiled only child and wore clothing from “the right” stores and because I was very quiet and shy, I was a snob to many; rich to some.

I think that there are different levels of judging others…

I think that just about every day I judge others in that I THINK things about them. I may think that they just said the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard. I may think about how they seem to be fairly incompetent. Or arrogant. Or oblivious to the rest of the world. Whatever the thought, I KNOW I do it. This type of judgement is thinking negative thoughts about someone based on their actions. A person can do something as simple as walk out into traffic and I might become annoyed and make the judgement that they’re clearly…. An idiot. Not concerned about traffic and feel that they have some right to just plow off of the curb into oncoming traffic. Or something else. We’re constantly judging others. The small thoughts that don’t escape our heads are fairly harmless. How does someone know what I’m thinking unless I do or say something that makes it obvious? They don’t.

Then there’s the type of judging that we project onto others… Or maybe we just share those judgements (or opinions!) of others. In this situation, we’re probably talking about someone. Sometimes we just need to vent our frustrations. In the process of rattling off what is so insanely obnoxious about someone else that it’s disruptive to our daily routine, we more than likely make statements in judgement of said annoying individual. I don’t know that I do this daily, but I’d say at least a few times a week.

Then there is the harsh judgement that we throw in the faces of others. Here is where we decide what’s “wrong” with them and tell them all about it. We insult, and maybe even hurt, them because of what we think. We use our opinions to make judgements about others. Sometimes we may not even know them. I think that this is less rare. However, associated with this are the non-verbal actions that demonstrate that we might have a particular judgement of someone. These are more frequent than actually telling someone (it’s much easier to cast an evil stare than it is to be so bold as to tell someone what we think).

Judging others is normal. However, the extent to which it is done is a problem. If you’re walking around telling someone how much they suck on a daily basis, you’re kind of an a-hole (yup, I just judged YOU too, guy!).

In thinking about all of this judgeyness, I’ve come to realize that I judge A LOT. Generally it’s the not-so-nice thoughts about others. I can identify that my judgements on others are based on my own insecurities and fears. I think that identifying this is a good thing. Admitting to it? Even better. A lot of people seem to hide that they judge others. After all, it’s terrible to judge! How could anyone dare admit something as atrocious as that?

Oh yeah… Did I mention we judge ourselves? And that typically we’re our own worst critics?

My new plan is to try to not be so judgemental. It’s a normal thing, however, I am pretty good about turning it off (or at least not showing  it) when I’m in certain situations. For example, in my professional life, I cannot be effective in my job judge others in an outright way. I may think things, yes, but I cannot let those thoughts interrupt my work. If I really couldn’t handle something, the responsible and ethical thing is to….Baaaack away!!! I’d refer this person on to someone who would be better able to work with them. Awareness is such a major thing in my career, but also should be in our personal lives!

If I can change my judgemental nature in a professional setting, I should be able to in my personal life too. I can’t change that I’ll judge. It. Just. Happens. However, I can change the degree of my judgements. I can learn from the negative thoughts about others; I can teach myself that it really isn’t so nice to think certain ways. I can cut down the nasty chatter about others in conversations. To do so I must… Let go of some of my insecurities and fears.

For example…Relationships. No two guys that I’ve dated have been the same. Why have I always made some judgement based on an ex or a new girl? I don’t expect to be the same as someone else. I certainly cannot be the only person in the world who doesn’t really have a “type.” It is unfair of me to think… “WTF is he thinking…Dating me, a social worker who could work with abused and neglected kids… And then dumping me for some loser who can’t even take care of hers? I’M NOT LIKE THAT!” I know I’m not like that. Not even close. My friends and family know I’m not like that. I couldn’t imagine ever hurting a child. Just because someone dated me then someone totally unlike me doesn’t mean that we’re anything alike.
It’s unfair to think “OMG… He dated that? (or now he’s with that?) Look at her and look at me. There’s no comparison! Wait...Am I ugly like her, and just don’t know it?”

I don’t like to be judged.

I don’t like to hear that the guy I’m in a relationship with doesn’t like certain things, and seems annoyed when I mention them, because his ex liked them. Guess what! I’m not her. I may have some of the same interests, but he shouldn’t judge me based on those similarities.

I don’t like someone to think certain things about me because of how I look.

But I judge?

I think this happens a lot. It’s often okay for us to judge but the minute we’re judged, we’re angry. I think we all need to learn to be okay with being judged. The chances of not judging others are very slim… We do it. Others do it. We need to get used to the idea that someone is judging us. We need to learn to deal.

My journey for health has changed somewhat. I’m still striving for better physical health….Weight loss, better running times, whatever it might be… But NOW I’m going to work on the me inside too.

Life is a constant process of change. We can all always work on something about ourselves. Anyone who thinks they have nothing to work on is, in my opinion, a liar. Lie to the world, fine, whatever…. No one else HAS to tolerate it. Lie to yourself… Well, that’s sad. I wonder if maybe you would find more enjoyment if you just admitted to your “faults.” We all have them. Don’t be afraid.

XOXO

To the Woman...

…On State St., near Lake, in Chicago, walking south on Saturday afternoon…

I saw you stare at my legs, with that disgusted look on your face. Thanks. I was having a lovely weekend, thinking of how happy I was that I was finally not fat in Chicago.

No one gave me a grossed out look. I didn’t notice anyone look at me and whisper. No one asked if they could help me (in stores) in a snobby tone that hinted at the fact that I had no business being in that store. No one glared at me when I bought cupcakes, or ate pizza. No one had to squeeze by me on the train.
That is until I saw YOU on Saturday afternoon.

Why is it that no one else (at least that I saw) looked at me like I was disgusting? Why…? Because I’m average; no longer a fat girl. It was the best I’ve felt about myself recently. To not stand out because I looked disgusting was something that you probably couldn’t understand. You with your skinny legs, and tall slender frame (minus the “Mom Pooch” — but I didn’t stare at it’s nastiness…because I’m not rude). I only stared at you (and your horrible old hag hair cut) AFTER I caught you staring at me.

Remember the brief moment we held eye contact, before you hurried and looked away? I do. I hope that you do too; I hope you’re embarrassed that I saw you staring at my legs in horror. I also hope you know that when my eyes narrowed and an icy look was shot your way, you know why.

My guess is that you did not look at the shirt I was wearing and know that it is from the girls’ section.
That’s right. I can wear (some) little girls shirts. I certainly don’t run around wearing things that are obviously for kids. A pink Cubs jersey? Not so obvious. Oh, and that Columbia fleece I got for just over 20 bucks? Not so obvious. I know I’m not a child and will not run around dressing like one, but if I see a deal and it’s not too childish, I’m gonna get it.

You probably did not see the rest of me. My pretty face? My nice hair (okay, after being in the rain not so much)? My beautiful eyes? My small waist? Oh, and what about my chest, where you can see my sternum? I mean, the jersey was open with a tank under it. If you were looking at me so intently, you should have seen the rest of me as well. I don’t think you did. At least not until I glared at you.

Would you like to know something about my awful thighs? There once was a time that they were filled with fat. Yes, I let that happen…I’m not asking for your sympathy because of what I was. Or your praise because I finally took responsibility and got healthy. I am fully aware that I should have taken that responsibility a long time ago. I’m just telling you that they’re floppy and have horrible looking ridges because I have extra skin.

Do you know how hard it is to get rid of extra skin? No? It’s nearly impossible. Sure SOME of it firms up but the reality is that not all of it does. Therefore, people like me; people who made the mistake of allowing themselves to get fat before getting healthy, sometimes have to deal with it.

I’m SO incredibly sorry that YOU had a problem with MY unsightly thighs in a pair of shorts. Yes, honey, that is sarcasm that you’re sensing.

Why, exactly, did you seem to have such a problem with my thighs? Was the wiggle hurting you? Guess what! The wiggle hurts me. It hurts me every time I look at it and I think of why I have it. It’s what I did to myself. Unfortunately there’s no one else to blame. It hurts me that I, apparently, did not love myself enough to be healthy. Every Time I have to look at my body from my knees to my neck, I remember. Have you ever hurt yourself in that way? Do you know what it’s like?

I don’t look at my skin and hate it just because it’s ugly (but it is, I know, and I do hate it for that reason). I look at it and know that it wouldn’t be there if it hadn’t been for me being unhealthy. The realization that you’re giving yourself the unwanted gift of a slow death isn’t something that’s light on the heart. My heart is heavy …. Every. Single. Time. I think of what I did.

I hope that you’ve never had to realize how much you didn’t love yourself. I hope that you don’t have to look at yourself and SEE it. It’s bad enough to think about it and for it to reside in your mind. The additional difficulty that seeing it every day isn’t so easy.

I’ve played that moment over and over in my mind. No matter how hard I try, there was nothing else that you could have been staring at. I tried. And tried. And tried. Unfortunately, when I draw an imaginary line between your line of sight and my thighs…. There are no other possibilities.

Yes, you bothered me. Your staring, your horrified look, and your embarrassment of me seeing you; bothered me. I know that people are constantly judging one another. I do it too… I’m just not obvious about it.

People like you used to really get to me. While I’m obviously bothered (wouldn’t have written this if not!) by it, it’s not getting me down. I didn’t go on an eating binge. I didn’t put my pajamas on and stay in bed. I didn’t cry. I did get annoyed and angry with you. Then I realized, maybe you’re just one of those people who is completely ignorant when it comes to your own behavior. Maybe the conversation with your friend was so boring, that my thighs were more interesting. I kinda feel sorry for you… I hope that you can find some kind of self-awareness in your life. You didn’t look very happy. Maybe then you’ll be happier. Maybe then you’ll surround yourself with people who are not so incredibly boring that a stranger’s thighs catch your eye so much that you literally stare.

SO. Lady… Next time you decide that you’re going to look at someone in disgust… PLEASE be aware of your facial expression. Don’t stare. Basically? Don’t do things that will make it obvious what you’re staring and totally grossed out.

Reduced to Tears.

Working out today was a little rough. It’s mid-week and I’m tired. I haven’t gotten enough sleep this week and I’m tired. I’ve worked out nine of the last 10 days and I’m tired.

Did I mention I’m tired?

Or at least I WAS tired…Before I sucked it up and worked out. Actually, now that I think about it, there was no sucking it up to be done. I just did it.

Most days working out is part of my normal routine. Days that it’s not are usually days off, which usually mean I’m busy with something else. It’s not often that I take a day off and just hang out at home. I have a VERY hard time doing that. You know, unless I’m like sick or something.

Today was no different. I came home from work, let the dogs out, changed, and worked out. I did some cardio followed by some strength training. I’m definitely feeling it. I definitely felt it during my workout…Not even just the strength training portion! As painful as that was, it wasn’t the worst part.

My run/walk time today was brutal. My legs felt so tight. From the calves up through the thighs, I was very aware that my muscles have been worked. At one point, they hurt so badly that I didn’t think that I would be able to go on. Okay, so that’s the dramatic portion of my brain taking over. It got to a point that I had trouble moving my legs as fast as I had been. But? I did.

I pushed past my aching, wobbly legs and kept going. I actually found that running felt better than walking. I had fewer, and shorter, walk intervals than I did when I ran. I kept my heart rate up, but steady, and there was not a part of my body that wasn’t soaked with sweat when I finished.

At one point while running, I started to FEEL how tired I was in my body. My legs HURT. It was more than just that ache of worked muscles. This seemed to be every mucle in my leg resisiting me. It was as if they were screaming “STOP!!! WE’RE GONNA WEAKEN!” It was at that moment, that actual tears started to form in my eyes. The first time anyway. It happened again a little later in the run, but wasn’t as bad.
I didn’t stop. I pushed through. I reduced myself to tears and kept going. What’s a few tears here and there? Nothing. The eyes are just another area of the body that expresses some form of liquid…lol… Tears are the sweat of my eyes.

There were moments during both the cardio and the ST that I’m pretty sure my internal grunts escaped my lips. My counts during ST got more gutteral and somewhat strained toward the end of each set. My muscles shook and felt week… Ahhhh muscle failure, I love you.

After my workout (the cardio and ST) I felt so good… Physically tired and sore, and wet, but good. Very good. Naturally, as with any good workout, I felt recharged after.

Sometimes I still find myself in disbelief at the fact that pain can feel so amazing.

Pain really is beauty… That statement is so true. And, depending on your definition of beauty, it can be fairly painful at times (for me it’s things like my muscles feeling like they’re on fire and having the little hairs ripped out of my eye brows… that stuff makes me feel beautiful; especially the muscles).

Also? I really do feel much better feeling sore tonight (and probably a bit tomorrow too!) than I would if I didn’t work out.  I would feel SORRY (in this way I define it as angry, self-loathing, mentally abusive toward myself) had I not worked out. Today would be lost, as far as a workout is concerned. It would have been a loss because I had nothing else to keep me busy. I would’ve sat on my rear, doing something else. Sure I would’ve been working on a project of some kind, but I would have missed out on the truly awesome feeling of a good workout.

Sometimes when it feels like you can’t go any farther, you have to push yourself. If you cry, scream, or even vomit, you need to push yourself to your limits. Your body can handle a lot more than you give it credit for.

XOXO

Shall I be SHOT?

Yes, that’s right someone wants to shoot me. YIKES!

To clarify, not with a gun. Not even a squirt gun. Not with a bow and arrow. Not with a hose. Not with some form of liquid flying out of the end of a straw. No, no one will be shooting anything at me.
A photographer wants to shoot me.

As in…Do a PHOTO shoot. One in which I am the model….?? For real? Did I read that correctly? Apparently so.

Now, I am so NOT against it. I have just planned to wait until I reach my goal weight. BUT now I am starting to re-think that.

My reason for waiting is that a photo shoot was going to be my reward; my gift to myself for reaching my goal. That and maybe a vacation. Or a photo shoot and shopping spree. Whatever I choose, I for sure want to do a shoot.

Here’s what I’ve been thinking lately…

I have a lot of nasty skin NOW. How much more will I have about 20 pounds from now? The fact is that even when I reach my goal, I’m not going to LOOK how I would like to. I’m fairly certain that I will not be busting out a bikini to have my photo taken in. I wouldn’t now. I certainly won’t when I have even more excess skin.

So… Why not do it now?  I’ve come a long way and have been working so hard. I’ve been really into the fitness aspect of things lately; more than I had been most of the summer. I feel like I have a new sort of freedom with the strength that I feel.

A shoot was meant to be a goal reward. I don’t think it’s such a bad thing to change it. I’d still like for something fun like a trip or a shopping spree to be my reward.

However, I’ve also been thinking about that…

I might give myself the gift of…Surgery. I am terrified of the pain associated with it, but pain only lasts so long. I’m not a fan of the idea of scars, especially the ones that will end up on my arms from brachioplasty.
These scars will be a reminder of where I was, where I will be when I get there, and a reminder of the journey it took to reach my goal. In my opinion, this freakin’ skin is pretty much the same thing. It’s not a nice reminder. I look at it and groan because it’s hideous.  Other days I cry. I cry because after all of this work I still do not find my body what I’d call attractive. I cry because I wouldn’t have this problem had I never been overweight in the first place. No that’s not right. According to my BMI I am overweight now. I was obese. I was morbidly obese. I was slowly killing myself. How the hell could I do that to myself?! I guess I really just didn’t care about me as much as I should have. Not anymore though… Now I’m FINALLY putting myself first.

While this journey has been for my health, my physical appearance is also very important to me.
I don’t want to wake up every single day for the rest of my life with this random skin hanging around. The more I think about it, the more I feel that the scars of surgery are the kind I’d prefer. They seem better than unsightly skin.

The cost factor pretty much sums up the fact that surgery will be my reward. Surgery is not fun. It has risks. It hurts. It’s a more expensive reward than I had planned on giving myself. This is why my other reward ideas, while a heck of a lot more fun (but not as long lasting) are probably not going to happen.
Back to my original thought…. Am I ready to be shot? Or not?

I still haven’t decided, but I really am leaning toward doing it sooner than later. AND? I can always get shot again in the future…. After I reach my goal. After I heal.

XOXO

She's Bony.

This was what my Auntie said on Sunday before they headed back to Kentucky. She had squeezed my arm for some reason or another and said “..., she’s bony!”

I laughed! At the same time though, I was like “ohhhhh yeah!!!” I kinda wanted to jump up and down with excitement. Never in my life did I ever think someone would describe me as “bony.”  It. Felt. So. Good.
Another bonus is that when I was showing my cousin my skin situation, and getting her opinion, she mentioned that it didn’t look as bad in person as it has looked in pics. Hmmm…That’s good!!! Naturally I think it’s hideous either way.

In our discussion about skin, which also consisted me of flapping it around like a freak, she commented that she thought a lot of what I was showing her was skin. I’ve been thinking it is, but haven’t known for sure. I won’t until I visit a surgeon. I’m glad she felt it was skin too…

Our conclusions were similar. If I can move it like that, it must be skin. I don’t recall being able to pick up my skin and pull it away from my body when it was fat-filled. Also, when I moved my belly skin up (ha! If only they could do that… move it on up to the ta-tas….so needed) I noticed that I have some ab definition under there. Thank God! There are times that I feel like my hard work is for nothing because I can’t see it.
We also looked at my thighs. Same conclusion. Skin. When I pulled that skin up; pretty nice muscle definition.

Thank you God for giving me an amazing cousin who is not grossed out by random things like floppy, excess skin… Or farting, belching, or conversations about female things and digestive troubles. She’s probably one of the few people who is so much like me.

One minute she can be all dressed up, looking fabulous, for a night on the town. The next, she’s watching baseball while wearing Pink sweats and a t-shirt. She loves shopping for bargains, boutiques, and loves playing with her “babies” (dogs). She’s a girly-girl one minute and a little more like a boy the next. She likes crafts, home decorating, and cute accessories.

Dang… We are SO MUCH alike.  I seriously don’t know if I just described my cousin for myself!
It’s awesome to have such strong bonds with people, especially family. It’s even more awesome to be so close to someone who doesn’t live nearby. I think my closeness with some of my family members comes from being an only child. A few of my cousins are like my younger siblings.

Weekends like the one I just had are a wonderful reminder of all of the amazing people (and things) I have in my life.

“…People come into your life and people go. But it’s comforting to know the ones you love are always in your heart. And if you’re very lucky, a plane ride away.”

XOXO

Below: My cousin and I - both wearing my BCBG, size medium, dresses! I never thought I’d see the day where she and I would be able to share clothes!!! FABULOUS feeling!

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Below: The two of us at her wedding a few years ago, and this past weekend. She’s always been beautiful!

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Blaaaah, Blaaah, and BLAH.

Once upon a time a girl had a day where she felt blah…Just BLAH.

I don’t think I’m sick. I have no symptoms of sickness, but am a little nauseated. Yuck. I have these days now and then. Nausea is no stranger to me. Sometimes I get nauseated if I…. Need to eat, ate too much, need to use the bathroom, when my allergies are acting up more than usual and my sinuses are draining, when I feel dizzy, etc… Basically, my stomach and I don’t always get along. It’s not like I’m going to get sick, it’s just that overall feeling of yuck.

Side note: Do you know how obnoxious it is to feel like that at work all day and not be able to go home “sick” because you aren’t really “sick”?  I’m pretty sure I need to go home because I feel “blah” isn’t a good reason. So instead I worked through the day, upset tummy and all. I was sooooo glad when it was time to go home.

I think my problem today is that I’m tired. I didn’t sleep well last night, which is always super hard on me. Once I finally fell asleep, I slept for an hour, then was back up. Then I had a hard time going back to sleep again. It felt like when I finally did, it was time to get up. Apparently I hit snooze 3 or 4 times, and I only remember my alarm going off once. Maybe it was twice… I remember thinking it was early, then all of the sudden it was half an hour later. I think I needed sleep so badly that those 30 minutes stuck together and flew by like crazy.

Since I’m feeling yucky I came home and laid down for a while. I have a hard time napping, but sometimes I can drift off for a few minutes. I think maybe I did for 20 minutes today. I started my workout an hour later than I planned, but oh well… At least I did it!! Sometimes it is far too easy to skip out because “I’m tired” (said with a whine).

Today was one of those days that I just DID. NOT. WANT. TO. But I did it anyway. I feel pretty good now. Tummy isn’t upset and now I just feel tired. I had energy for a minute but that went away pretty quick.
What I cannot figure out is how, when I have that feeling of yuck, healthy foods make me think “yuuuckkk” and honestly make me want to be sick. But unhealthy, carby stuff does not. In fact those things are quite easy on my tummy. I’m totally craving pizza right now too… Weeeeeird. I never realized that comfort foods which are hard on the stomach seem so soothing when I feel like this (that pretty much proves I’m not “sick” - if I were, I wouldn’t want anything).

I did have two cookies, that I baked, soooo I knew exactly what was in them. I also tend to make cookies smaller than the average person so having two was like having one!

OMG….THE WOMAN IS HUMAN — SHE ATE TWO COOKIES!!!

Yes, yes, I am human.  I DO splurge now and then. I like sweets too. I’m not some superhuman machine thing.

Hmm… Now that I think about it, maybe it was drainage upsetting my stomach, which would make sense that carbs would soothe it. All that carby goodness probably soaks that stuff up pretty quickly.

Okay, I’m done being gross now.

At any rate, I managed to do a good workout and stay within my cal range, right where I want to be. So, I’m happy. Tired, but happy.

XOXO

Disappoinments Lead to Bad Things...

…For some people.

Tonight I received some disappointing news. I didn’t handle this well. I usually don’t. I absolutely hate the idea of planning something only to be let down. It seems like this happens to be a lot. Is it just me? Or do others try to plan things, only to have them fall apart at the last minute?

There are times when I feel relief if a plan falls apart. Generally at those times I’ve wanted to cancel, but haven’t. I guess it’s because I’ve been a people pleaser. Funny, though, that hasn’t happened in quite a while. I no longer feel guilty if I say “no” to something. I guess in the past I was afraid of missing out on something.

My interests have changed as I’ve matured. I no longer feel like I have to be a part of everything that’s going on. It’s a nice change.

Anyway…. So disappointments suck. I know we’ve all been there. I swear I feel like I’ve had more than any. There’s nothing worse than getting my hopes up about something only to be let down. I should be used to this by now. Seriously. It has happened so many times in so many different situations. Why does it still hurt when something doesn’t work out as planned?

Maybe I need to learn not to get so excited about things. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be able to be let down.

Right?

Anyway, so these sucky disappointments have always lead to bad things, depending on what the plan had been. I’ve experienced annoyance and agitation when these things have happened. Other times I’ve wanted to go to bed and just cry myself to sleep. Yeah, I’m a crier. I do not always cry when disappointed, but sometimes it happens. Like I said; depends on the disappointment.

There were also times when I’d binge. And binge. And binge. I’d binge out of sadness, anger, frustration, and then I’d feel guilty. The next logical (ha!) step was to be too hard on myself. Binge. Cry. Try to sleep. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

Bottom line? I HATE when things do not happen as planned.

Honestly one of my pet peeves is when people back out on plans. ESPECIALLY when they give excuses that seem to be just that… Excuses. Just be honest and tell me if you don’t want to do something! You know? Another part of that is when they seem to fail to use the brain that is floating around in their head. What happened to thinking outside the box to make things happen? I do it! It’s not hard!!

Maybe I’m just more of a planner and an action person than other people are. I guess my belief is if you want it to happen, you need to make it happen. This is probably what helps me to be motivated and has lead to the successes I’ve had. If I want it, I go for it. If I fail, I fail. That’s never fun, but at least I know I gave it my all and did my best.

If you want something to happen, you will find a solution (that works!). Let’s face it, sometimes solutions are not ideal for everyone involved and cause more of a burden than the situation is worth. I also recognize those times and can easily say, “you know what, just forget it.” There are things that are just not worth the cost, whatever that might be.

So. Tonight. D-i-s-a-p-p-o-i-n-t-m-e-n-t, my foe, showed up. Jerk-face! How did I handle it? I laid down for a while…Probably an hour. I cried a little…A couple different times. I think that was mainly out of frustration.

And then (insert doom style music here)… I BINGED.

BUT! I didn’t really BINGE. I turned to food for a very mild comfort. Then I realized that something sweet wasn’t going to help anything. I’d end up feeling worse. After two tablespoons (yes that’s my new definition of being “bad”) of frosting, I stopped myself.

“You idiot!!! What are you thinking!?! This frosting? So NOT gonna make you feel better. Neither will laying around crying like a big, spoiled baby!!”

Let’s face it, having been an only child who has been kinda spoiled and is used to things going her way… Just MIGHT have something to do with my inability to handle disappointments well. That’s a bit of an understatement. There’s no well even near how I handle disappointments. I’m actually quite terrible at it. And MAN, can I be MEAN when I’m disappointed. Think, “Regina George” in mean girls. Or worse yet, “Catty” (or ”Katty” or “Kaddy,” whatever it was).

So that and my underlying fear of rejection - not just the romantic kind…You know what I mean. The fear of not being included; that horrible left out unimportant feeling. That one.

Anyway, so after my frosting situation, I changed my clothes, and put my arse on the treadmill. Then I did some ST using my body weight (i.e.: crunches, push-ups). Physically I felt awesome when I was finished. I felt a little better emotionally… I at least got myself past the point of wanting to be all depressed and do nothing.

Total extra “bonus” — that frosting put me in my calorie range for the day. I was too low and knew I’d need something else to eat later. The frosting wasn’t the end of the world. Sure, the calories were empty and did nothing for me, but my point is that it wasn’t as bad as it could have been… Or once was.
When you know what you’re eating, stop yourself, and make yourself accountable (for me this is tracking/journaling) it’s not a binge. It’s like saying “HEY GUESS WHAT!!!! I HAVE CONTROL!!!”

THAT? Is a totally awesome feeling.

Little extra note about my workout… I am for sure getting stronger. During my warm-up I had to put the treadmill at a higher speed because I didn’t feel like I was walking very fast. For my workout, I did walk/run intervals (not my beloved HIIT - high intensity interval training because I didn’t run as hard as humanly possible). It was a great feeling to know that I can feel myself getting stronger and faster.

 Oddly, during my ST, the first sets of my exercises (except crunches) seemed the worst. What’s up with that!? I’d think that as I use my muscle more, it’d be harder and hurt more.

In the end, minus the disappointment, it was a good and successful day. I avoided a binge and instead of having a pity party, I worked out.

I really am LOVING who I’ve become.

XOXO

Legs, Sore Muscles, Food, and Dog Farts.

Yeah that’s a totally random title. However, it is also exactly what I intend to blog about, so it makes sense.
I’ll start with dog farts…OMG!!! Boxers have to be the smelliest of dogs. If not, I’d hate to be around one that smells worse. My little (well big) guy is laying on the floor breaking wind like crazy. I’m not sure how I am still breathing. If this were a cartoon, toxic green fumes would be floating through the air. Shoot, I hope I don’t pass out!

Food… Today I ate more than I wanted to, in terms of calories. But I was hungry. I didn’t “think” I was hungry or eat just for the heck of it. My stomach was growling and I felt those hunger pains that people get if they go too long without eating. It spoke and I answered. The “FEEEEED ME”s were very loud tonight. I did what I should and responded appropriately. I stuck to healthy stuff, so no worries there! I  ate around 100 calories more than I planned. I know…Only 100 lol…No biggie!

 Also? My workout was longer than usual. This means that I burned more cal than usual. I doubled my time. I doubled what I burned. So yes, feeding my hungry self was FOR SURE the correct thing to do. YAY me….For being so healthy and listening to my body! It loves me today.

My workout has left me feeling awesome, strong, tired, and sore. I’m not as sore now and when I finished my workout though, so that’s a bonus. I also know that soreness comes from muscles tearing, in preparation to rebuild — bigger and stronger. I love feeling sore. I know I’ve worked….and that makes me feel so accomplished. I can’t wait to see how sore I am when I get up tomorrow morning!!

That does NOT make me crazy.

That makes me a person who loves fitness.
That makes me a person who loves feeling strong, healthy, and amazing.
That makes me a person who loves herself and loves her body.

Yup…I’m pretty much feeling awesome right about now.

Legs….

 As I was laying on my back, legs extended above me, while doing toe crunches I had to stop. I’m pretty sure I started at my lower legs for a full minute.
Is that weird?

The reason I started at my legs is that I realized that I liked how they looked (in that position anyway; when all of the extra skin just flops down and hangs out around my hips rather than on my legs).  I looked up at my tanned, toned, sweaty (seriously, there’s something about the sweat factor that makes them look even better) legs and thought “daaaammmmnnnn…”

I LOVED how they looked. They looked lean, athletic, and strong. I could see the muscle definition and wanted to just lay there and stare at it. Then I looked at my thighs.

I realized that when my legs are extended upward (meaning the extra skin is, once again, not present) my thighs look pretty dang good too. Again, I could see the muscle definition. They looked lean, strong, and small (but in a good, healthy way; not stick-like).

My next thought? “Oh skin, I hate you. Look at what you’re hiding. I wish you could just flop right off of my body. Forever.”

That negative thought was quickly pushed out of my mind. Whether the skin is covering it the majority of the time doesn’t matter. What matters are the times that I realize how much I’ve done for myself; how strong and fit I am becoming. THAT is enough to erase any negativity…For quite a while. I’ve felt awesome all night!
If you’re working toward a better you  (this is open to your own interpretation), in any area, don’t give up. Push yourself; work hard. Don’t miss out on seeing the progress that you’ve made. And don’t forget what you’ll continue to do.

NEVER forget to take a few moments to think of your accomplishments.

XOXO

Anorexia.

Words cannot express the immense hatred I feel toward this picture.
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Why? Look at HIM. He’s attempting to make a joke (and in my opinion one that is in VERY poor taste). I think that’s insulting to the people who have anorexia.

I also think he might be kind of an idiot. What did he do wake up and think “I think I’ll make fun of the fact that I’m morbidly obese and slowing killing myself! Yes, that’s a great idea!! I’ll use what I think is a weakness of someone else and make fun of myself for being fat at the same time! After all, they can’t laugh at you if you laugh with them…Right?” ?????

I’m pretty sure he didn’t think any of that.

 I’m also pretty sure he has not considered the fact that his own medical issue is very likely to throw him into an early grave. It’s a slow suicide. He’s slowly killing himself. It’s not even about how he looks; it’s about what he’s more than likely doing to himself.

He probably laughed and thought it was funny as heck that he’d wear a shirt that’s probably a lie, about a serious issue, given the fact that he’s clearly the opposite.

FYI, you didn’t “beat” anorexia. You (probably) were NEVER anorexic. You (probably) have no idea what it’s about. At least I hope not. If it’s not ignorance, then you really are just an ass.
Stuff like this, that makes fun of others for things that are out of their control IS NOT FUNNY. This shirt is as bad as walking around with something that says “I We Todd Did.”

Maybe I’m uptight. Maybe it’s the social worker in me. Or maybe it’s just the fact that I have a heart and care about other people. I do not think it’s funny to tease them. Whatever it is, that’s fine. I’ll take uptight if it means I’m not a jerk.

When it comes to eating disorders people can be SO ridiculously stupid. I hope it’s just ignorance, but honestly in some cases it is not.

ED is NOT something to joke about or to try to use to insult someone else. ED is a SERIOUS medical/mental health condition. I have heard far too many times, comments like “oh she’s so skinny, she MUST be anorexic.” I cannot put into words how much that absolutely pisses me off.
I’ve also heard comments toward/about me having a problem. The words “anorexic” “bulimic” or “eating disorder” have not been used, but the hint has been there. Phrases about me getting “too skinny” are annoying.

I’m not too skinny. According to the charts, my BMI puts me in the “overweight” category. I eat. I eat healthy most of the time. Sometimes I allow myself a treat and might have a cookie or something. The key is moderation, and the fact that I don’t typically eat junk food. I exercise to be healthy. Yes, it’s to lose weight. It’s also to build lean muscle, to feel strong, and to LIVE a healthy life.

I do not have anorexia or bulimia.

If I did, I wouldn’t be ashamed. I’d admit it. Having a disorder doesn’t make someone any less of a person. It doesn’t make them weak. Admitting to it and seeking treatment shows a strength beyond the strength that most people have.

Honestly? If anything, I’d have ED, NOS (not otherwise specified). This category includes compulsive overeating/binge eating/emotional eating. This was me…In the past.

I no longer use food as a comfort. I don’t run to it every time I’m hurt, sad, angry, or even happy (celebrations for good things, you know!). I handle it. ON. MY. OWN. I cry if I need to. I yell if I must. Then I calm myself down. I can get through feeling upset (angry, sad, stressed, etc.) without turning to food.
I’ve beat the heck out of that demon. It will never again live inside me. I’m strong now. Words of others are not going to get to me. They don’t. I simply smile and think “what an idiot; how sad.”

Some of the most amazing I know have struggled with ED. They’re beautiful, smart, talented, kind individuals. ED is typically about feeling in control of an aspect of life… Some people get overwhelmed and need SOMETHING to feel is in their hands. Some feel like they have to be perfect. In their eyes, perfection might be thin. Or too thin.

Far too many people don’t understand that ED isn’t really just about being thin. It’s more complicated than that. I think that before people open their mouths and make comments or jokes, they should learn about things. Of course they won’t because far too many of them think they know everything and that their view is “right.” It’s really not a matter of what their opinion means. It’s a medical condition. I wonder if they make fun of others who have cancer. I think it’s just the same.

That’s my rant for the day.

PLEASE, if you do not understand something, take the time to educate yourself — whatever it is! Don’t use things like anorexia to make fun of others or to use to insult them.

When you do, you just show the world how pathetic and uneducated you really are. If you don’t know about something, then don’t act like you do. And certainly do not open your big mouth. I’m sure there’s something that someone else could say about you to hurt you or insult you. It might not be obvious on the outside, but someday someone will find something.

Remember - “don’t judge a book by its cover” because you really don’t know what’s going on inside of it.

XOXO

Some Fitspo...From 8/17/11.

A little fitspo from the concert I went to last night… Britney definitely has, what I think, is an awesome body!!!
Oh yeah, and there’s one of me too… Skin (refer to last blog) and all!!
XOXO

Running with Nature....In August.

Today; my foe? Plants. They’re pretty. Especially the ones with the flowers. However, to a person who has allergies… They’re awful!!! I ran by one plant, or maybe it was a bush, tonight (not sure what kind, but it had a strong scent). The less than 30 seconds I ran past it was all it took.

Tingle. Tingle. Okay, good it went away.

Then I came across the street construction and a big truck dumping water on some dirt.Okay, so that’s not really nature…Well, the dirt is. Right? Anyway…. This stirred up dust. Dust, like plants, is not my friend.
Tingle. Tingle. Ohhh I’m stuffy. Tingletingletingletingle…OMG my nose!!! I have sneeze “stuck.”

Good thing my run was almost over.

I remained stuffy until after I de-stunk myself (showered). I guess the steam helped clear the gunk out of my nose.

Tingle. Tingle. SNEEZE. Tingle. Runny…ewww. Tingle, Oh my gosh I need another tissue. Tingle. SNEEZE. TINGLE. TINGLE. SNEEZE. TINGLE. SNEEZE. SNEEZE. TISSUE. TINGLE. TINGLE. TINGLE. TISSUE. SNEEZE. TISSUE. TINGLE.

THAT has been my evening.

Now I remember why I don’t run outside that much.

Nature.

Nature hates me. Or my allergies hate it.

The other reason I don’t run outside very often (okay less than that because the last time was when I did a 5K in JUNE!) is that I’ve been a little self-conscious. It’s hot, soooo no running while wearing pants like I did for the 5K. This means my legs are exposed. I’m wearing shorts….The running kind. They’re not very long. My legs are SUPER exposed.

I generally DO NOT like my legs. I keep working them and the more I tone up and lose weight, the worse they look. Why? I have a lot of skin on my thighs. It’s gross. They pretty much look like a map of a mountain range or something. Yuck.

I can do tricks with my skin. I can pull it away from my body and wiggle it around. Okay, sorry, some of you may find that gross. I just think it’s weird. Or maybe I like to gross people out. :)

Anyway, so clearly my skin is just hanging there and it’s floppy. There’s nothing that can be done. It just flops. So, when I run, it’s worse.

Floppy. Flop. Floppy. Floppy. Flop. Flop.

This made me hide out in my basement. In the past it was the fat. Now it’s the lack of fat (filling out my skin). BUT I decided today that I wanted to get outside. I needed a good run. I run harder and faster when I run outside. My heart rate shoots up, pretty fast. I like it. I find it more difficult to run outside too. I like that too.

Honestly? I don’t know why I’ve been hiding. I should be proud of my skin. It’s not filled with fat anymore. LET IT FLOP!! If people don’t like that it’s there, freely flopping in the breeze that I leave behind me (I hope the breeze doesn’t send my stench into orbit…ewwww; see, gross)….Then that’s too bad for them. Don’t look at me. If some skin bouncing around grosses you out, then look away. I’m happy that I have that skin (as much as I really do hate it). I’ve worked hard to be scarred in that way. Not everyone can do what I’ve done.

For that reason…. I plan on running outside more often. I like it and I want to do it. I look better now than I did before. It feels good. And really do the opinions of people that I don’t know really matter to me? NO.
This whole running outside thing will, of course, depend on the nature and the allergies. Hopefully as fall comes (what a great time to run outside!) that stuff will subside. Until then, I think I can suffer through, at least once a week!

Tingle. Tingle. Tingle. Sneeze. Tissue. Tingle. Tingle. Sneeze. Tissue. TIIINGGGLLLEEE….

Why can’t I sneeze again!?

XOXO

Just When You Think You've Pushed...

…You need to push a little more.

It’s no secret that my pounds have NOT been coming off very easily the last several months. Apparently it’s time to trick my body again. I guess I’ll have to look at my eating and see what I can do to change things up. I may cut out some (not all) carbs and see if that helps. I’ve tired everything…Changing cals, different exercise, and my body just wants to go slow.

I was warned that this would happen. “The closer you get to your goal, the harder it will be to lose.”

SO TRUE!!!!

I’m trying not to look at the 20+ pounds I’d like to lose. I’m trying to look at where I have been… 170 pounds. I wear clothes half (and more than half) the size I used to. I SEE the difference. However, the scale doesn’t reflect this. Jerk.

Luckily I measure… I have lost inches (thank goodness!) even though the pounds aren’t so cooperative. My muscles are more defined. I look smaller even though my scale doesn’t think so. My body fat percentage has decreased. Oh yes, I am doing good things!

Although the numbers are a huge frustration of mine, I know I’m changing. I know I’m healthy. I eat healthy (not 100% of the time; I enjoy a cookie or something every now and then…I’m human). I workout. I’m building muscle and losing fat. This should be enough to keep me from getting frustrated, but those numbers are SO powerful sometimes.

So, I’m making a new plan. I love planning….Thank goodness! This whole weight loss thing is a lot of planning. At least it is after you lose an entire person and are so close to your goal that it’s almost taunting you.

I’m pushing harder in my workouts and planning different types of meals.

Dear Body,
I’m about to trick you and you’re not expecting it. I promise that it won’t be too painful for you. Just cooperate and help me get those pounds off. My goal is reasonable (the end of the year). There’s no reason you can’t just behave and help me out a little. But you won’t. I’m left with no choice but to push you harder. And I will. Maybe next time you’ll cooperate! Although, I hope that there isn’t a next time. I hope that these changes will push me to my goal, and then I’ll just have to maintain (which I’ve proven to be awesome at doing).

Get ready…I’m gonna make it happen.

Lots of love,
Me.

I’m glad I continue to see changes and make progress, but I need that extra push right now. So? I’m gonna push. HARD. Sometimes you have no choice but to push harder. I know I can, as I’ve done it before. It’s not hard.

Actually, I’m kind of excited about it….Increased workouts - sore muscles, more sweat, and feeling like I might drop. Yup, I can’t wait (really!)!!!

This applies to many things in life… NO matter how frustrating those things can be, don’t give up. Push yourself and reach your goals.

XOXO