Saturday, November 28, 2009

Day 332-Thanksgiving Weekend

Prayers were answered and I was able to taste my plate at our family dinner feast.  It was an interesting year since most of us were either getting over a virus or beginning one!  I was touch and go there for a bit, but about an hour before we ate, I suddenly felt clear and not stuffy, I felt pretty good!

I had been taking Emergen'C since the very first moment I felt like I was getting sick.  I swear by this stuff!  I think this is the reason I made it through the holiday without being stuck in bed.  I even had the energy to be able to help my mom out, she was really sick but pushed herself through so that we could enjoy a lovely Thanksgiving.

So, my plans were changed.  I wasn't able to work out as much as I wanted or hoped to.  I did smaller workouts because I was just too achy and weak to do full workouts.  The whole weekend I struggled with sugar cravings and portions.  I honestly felt like I used to.  Crazy how you can spend a whole year changing habits and behaviors, and within a couple of days you can resort back to what you are trying to avoid.

I learned something HUGE.  I have said it before, I honestly believe it, but this extended holiday weekend just proved it once again.  It's ALL ABOUT EXERCISE!!  Without my typical, sweaty workout, I had a hard time with my eating, the way I felt, my time on the scale.  (It was up a pound)  I did a full workout today.  At first it was way hard!  I wondered if I hadn't yet fully recovered from my illness.  Luckily something interesting was on the TV and I was able to push through and get it done, but I am surprised by how much and how fast a body can change when you deviate from routine.

It was a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend.  I had a wonderful time with family, had wonderful meals with everyone, and I learned a lot!  You can try to loose weight by your food choices alone, but it can be very slow and challenging.  You can also try to loose weight solely by working out, but if you don't change your eating habits, although you are gaining a better heart and body, you may not be seeing the results on the scale as fast as you would like and end up giving up the much needed exercise.  You need both to have results!  Eating better makes it easier to workout and working out makes it easier to eat better.  It has been proven to me once again.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Day 329 - Cold

I have a cold.  I am not happy.  I feel like poo.  I dragged myself to the elliptical because no stupid cold is going to make me break my goal.  It was a shorter workout, but a workout none-the-less.  I pray that my nose isn't so stuffy tomorrow that I can't taste the feast.  I hope I wake up all better.  I am thankful it's not the flu.  :o)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Day 328 - Thanksgiving is on it's way...

I LOVE this time of year!  Thanksgiving is my most favorite holiday of year for so many reasons!  Of course, the food is a huge factor, but not like it used to be.  I mostly love the holiday because of family.

In my family, it really hasn't changed since long before my oldest memory of childhood.  The location did change when my grandparents got to the point where they were no longer able to host.  The opportunity then fell upon my parents where I was able to have a more helping hand in a few of the preparations.

My mom and I get together and set the table and have time to just converse about the big day.  I always enjoy that time together. She's also makes detailed notes each year so that if she or my dad weren't able to do what they do, we'd be able to step in and help out.  Life is what it is and some day I know that it will be my husband and my turn to take on the duties, to carry on the tradition for this side of my family.  I pray it's not for several more decades.  I love watching my dad and smelling the roasted turkey as we walk into the house.  The smell of the stuffing, the yams, and all the other familiar aromas when settling into the livingroom and kitchen area.  I enjoy seeing the kids' excitement over the day. It's wonderful to just spend the day being around each other, relaxing, when time doesn't seem to exist.

It's the menu that has for the most part, remained the same.  Each year we all know the menu, know what to expect. There have been few variations to the main meal, and we all love that!!  This year my mom wasn't able to get the usual rolls that we have had with the meal for eons.  I pray there won't be a riot!  No, as much as things have remained the same, so many things have changed.  What once was my grandparents with their children and their families has now grown into a whole new generation.  I love the constant that it is in my life.  I have only missed one of these dinners in my 35 years of physical existance.

With so many Thanksgiving dinners behind me, this is the first one where I am not worried.  I am not worried of over eating, I am not worried about being deprived.  (Like that has ever happened in the history of me) I am not worried about feeling out of control.  This is the first Thanksgiving that I can go, and honestly enjoy the whole day without a bit of anxiety over what passes my lips.  I am excited and I have a plan!

I am going to have a good, solid workout in the morning.  I am going to have a late breakfast that has a balance of carbs and protein around 10ish so that I don't go into Thanksgiving dinner at 2 ravished.  I am going to fill my plate with small servings of foods I adore!  When dessert comes around, I am going to have partial servings of the things I like so when I sit down I'll have 4 different types of dessert making up 1 maybe 2 actual servings.  The plan is to not go back for seconds. What happens if I do? It could happen. But maybe I'll just keep a balance of my carbs and protein so that my appetite doesn't control me.  At the end of the day, I will only have had 2 main meals and dessert that could count for a 3rd meal.  If I keeps portions down, I'll get my fill without over doing it.  My desire to binge hasn't been there now that I have allowed myself whatever I would like.  The fact there are no "no-no" foods, they don't hold control over me.  I have a bite or two, and I'm good.  If I feel I have eaten more than I should, I can also just do a mini workout (5-10 min.) when I get home.  Something to get my heart pumping and my metabolism started, just to help things along. Ever walked after being stuffed?  You feel so much better than if you just sit and do nothing.  It finally feels so wonderful not to be a slave to the holiday I adore.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Day 317 - An Interesting Tid-Bit I found

I was cleaning out the bookshelf that held all my texts and notebooks from when I was studying for my degree in Holistic Nutrition a few years back.  With the economy being as it is, I thought I would share this.  Of course this is a small list of items, and there are many other items that would fit under this list.  But if a person got creative, you could make several meals from just these few ingredients.  Not only would they be healthy meals, but they would be light on the pocketbook as well!

Food Items that are under $1 per serving

garbanzo beans
wild rice
butternut squash
whole grain pasta
pumpkin seeds

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Day 316 - One More Tip to Add to Yesterday's Post


temp·ta·tion (tmp-tshn):
   1. Something that seduces or has the quality to seduce.
   2. The desire to have or do something that you know you should avoid.

Why have something so powerful in your house pulling against your desire to do better?  For me personally, I have proven to myself this year that I can do pretty good in the beginning.  But keep that temptation in the house for a few days, my resistance to do good weakens and I often find myself thinking, "Let's just finish this off so it's gone and I can stop picking at it."  Not good.  Not good at all.  But if I keep it out and away, I am okay!  I LOVE to bake, so if I can make something, enjoy it the first day and then share with others immediately, all is well.  I am not one who likes to torture themselves with keeping temptation within reach, it makes it hard to stick to my convictions.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Day 315 - A Few Tips on How to Avoid Overeating

I like to eat.  In the past I have often overate and at times binged.  It would be easy for me to make my past actions present.  Every day I need to make a conscience decision to keep those habits in the past.  How have I been able to do it?  The following are a few things that are working for me:

1. I have to make the conscience (not passive) decision to want to take care of my body.  I need to make a firm decision that I am going to make good decisions. I have to literally tell myself that I want to do better in my eating, to eat in a manner that I need to so I can stay healthy. If I don't, I am passively giving myself permission to have one more day of bad food choices, overeating and feeling like a failure.  Back in those days of struggle, I would scream it to myself and often times, I would ignore it.  As each day passes, my internal voice doesn't have to be as loud either. Now, I can just think it, "Good choices." 

2. I need to give myself a split second to think about what I am going to eat when it's something that tempts me.  I used to hear it all the time in my WW meetings.  "Visualize what you want to achieve.  Visualize what you are eating.  Visualize.  Visualize. Visualize."  Used to make me crazy!!  I thought, if I am going to think about that brownie so much, of course I am going to eat it!!  But this year, I finally got it.  It clicked.  I made visualization work!  I first noticed back in March.  I had just started to make some progress loosing a few pounds.  We were at a social event and they were serving one of my most favorite desserts, and it was HOMEMADE. It is easier for me to avoid fake, processed treats, but when it's homemade?  That is my weakness.  They were serving brownies with vanilla ice cream and hot fudge.  At first I panicked.  How was I going to make it through this?  I had been so good but I felt like I was on the edge, that on any moment, with the right temptation, I was going to loose it and return to that dark place I was at the beginning of the year.  Suddenly my mind worked for me.  For a split second I visualized how I would feel after I ate the whole thing.  That milky coating on my tongue. That sweet overload of the senses when the spoon flops into the empty bowl.  The guilt of knowing I just lost control...again.  After passing through those feelings, that brownie sundae no longer held me in it's control.  I felt empowered.  I didn't want to feel like I knew I was going to feel.  I also knew if I deprived myself, my sense of control could snap and I could just loose it.  So I asked my son for a bite of his.  That was one delicious bite...and that was all I needed.  For the rest of the evening, I was satisfied, complete.  That brownie sundae no longer mattered. Now when faced with a temptation, I take that split second to really visualize, and I can find the control needed to make the choice that brings health and keeps me in my new jeans. :o)

3. Working out during my trouble time really helps to control the munchies.  My most challenging time of day with eating is after dinner.  I used to pack in nearly a days worth of calories after dinner during the time I was trying to "relax" from my day.  When I hop on my elliptical soon after dinner, that workout completely curbs any cravings.  I have also learned that if I can wrap myself up into something with my hands during my trouble time, I am completely distracted.  A good book, a crochet or any craft project for that matter, will keep my hands busy and my mouth empty too.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Day 313 - 2 Pounds Closer!

I really didn't expect this, but when I hopped on the scale, it was down 2 more pounds!  I just had to share!  This time of the year is so hard to focus on losing weight.  The weather is cooler, so baking is much more inviting.  The holiday season is picking up so there are more reasons for treats and fun foods you aren't typically around. 

I admit that I have been eating more than I would like to.  I am not binging, but I haven't been passing on the sweets.  The only thing different from last year to this year is that I am still exericsing every day.  Can maintenence at a healthy weight really be as easy as exercising daily?  If so, then you'll find me doing it everyday because I like to eat and I am really liking my new shape.  I can go to any store I like and actually find something I want to wear.  This is a new concept, it's convenient and it's healthy on the mind too.

So looking back on this post Halloween week to see why I lost 2 pounds, I have learned that if you can keep your body moving, it will work with you.  When you are ignoring your body's need to move and exercise, it totally works against you.  It really is all about exercise and eating moderatly.  Although I enjoyed Halloween, the rest of the week I had my simple breakfast of bran and simple lunch.  I didn't snack because I was just too busy to do so.  Dinner was typical, but with the weather changing, I even had a little bigger servings.  Although I exercised daily, I did something different, and maybe this was the reason.  This week was so busy that I found myself using the excuse, "I am tired and I don't really want to workout. Instead of doing 30 minutes, I'll do 15  and crank up the resisitence."  Maybe 15 minutes at level 15 is as effective as 30 minutes at level 10?  The ellipitical works those large leg muscles which do burn the most calories.  Maybe that is an effective substitute?

I think one of the most interesting things about this journey are the things I have learned along the way.  I hope you have been able to learn a little from my experience as well.  Have a wonderful day!