Friday, March 12, 2010

Mar. 12: Excuse busting

I've been an excuse maker. There's no real way to top 200 pounds without making excuses for yourself. I came to a realization today.

Unsuccessful people make excuses.
Successful people make it happen.

If there is no way, you have to create one.

Here are a few of my former excuses and how I've done some excuse-busting.

It's too expensive to eat healthy food.
If you make it all from scratch (which you should be doing anyway) and you use your creativity, you can eat clean on a budget.

I don't have time to make everything from scratch..
Try timing how long it takes you to drive to McDonalds, wait at the drive thru and then drive home. You CAN make a meal in that amount of time..

I don't know how to get started.
If you are reading this, you clearly have access to the internet. Use it to find a reliable source of information. Check out the links on the side of my page for some ideas.

I can't afford a gym membership.
Make your own workout equipment at home. This weekend I'll be photographing the everyday household items that comprise my beginner gym.

It's too hard to work out when I am this overweight.
Walk a few steps further everyday and you are accomplishing something.

I forgot my lunch today so I had to eat out.
Make the best choices possible with what you have available. Don't let an unplanned restaurant meal be your excuse for a free-for-all.

I've tried to lose weight - I just can't.
Try harder. Really. Focus 100% of your effort on your goals and don't cheat. Never give up. If you are eating clean and measuring your portions, you will lose weight. For some people it just takes longer than others.

I had a bad day, so I deserve this ice cream.
Is the ice cream REALLY going to resolve your bad day? Generally, for me, it just makes my butt bigger.

I have too much stress going on in my life to change my eating habits.
That is the best reason in the world to change your eating habits. Ditching the sugar and processed foods will go a long way towards decreasing your anxiety.

There really is a way, ALWAYS. You just have to find it. Tackling obstacles head on will make you a stronger person. Set your goals so you have a clear plan and then stop making excuses and getting in your OWN way!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mar. 11: Workout Plan

When all else fails, improvise!!!

I've created a couple of new exercise for my workouts! I don't have weights or a membership right now, so I am using my dogs big 25 pound container to do "Dog food Squats" and "Dog Food Lunges". Of course, at some point she is going to get hungry and want me to open that food, so I am on the lookout for my 30 pound item to upgrade to at that time.

Here is what I'm doing for strength training right now (and I'm SORE!!!)

Planks: 2 x 30 sec
Girlie Push-ups: 2 x 20
Crunches w/ legs up: 50
Dog Food Squats: 2 x20
Dog Food Lunges: 2 x15 per side

For cardio I'm walking until my cool new shoes arrive - I can't WAIT!!! I really need tunes and I am going to have to get SOMEONE to load my MP3 since I appear to be not quite smart enough to do it. Music really keeps me going, and stuff with an edge makes me go harder and faster. I know it will help with the running too.

Eats are looking good this week. My goal for the week is to get protein to no less than 100g per day. It's harder than it sounds! Yesterday I managed to get 103g, so I'm deeming it a success!

Any recommendations for the workouts? I don't have the upper body strength for pull ups yet - but anything else that you think might assist me to my goal of buff hotness? I'm all ears!!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Mar. 10: Peer Pressure

Okay tell me the truth! Do you think I'm really weird and food obsessed? Do you have the urge to feed me nachos? Do you find my proclivity for making "healthy junk" to be odd? And what about my obsession with chemical food additives?

Well, if you find this normal, you're in the right place. Peer pressure is just crazy. I went out with the girls recently and a couple of them actually seemed huffy when I was not interested in the fried appetizer plate and just got grilled chicken and steamed veggies (which was delicious BTW). Sometimes I think when you have particularly good eating habits it makes others feel guilty about their own dietary "transgressions." Then they become like the crack dealers of the French fry world, urging you to try "just one" so they don't feel guilty.

I'm learning (somewhat slowly) that most people don't actually want to know the origin of the nasty chemicals lurking in their foods. I'm trying to stop being the Jehovah's Witness of the Clean Lifestyle, and just do my own thing. If people ask, though, look out!

Working out, I'm sure will be the next thing that causes people to think I have a disorder. While I am partially unemployed, I've decided to take the bull by the horns and kick my workouts up about 100 notches. How many people really have the time and inclination to work out for 3 hours a day? Not too many but I am determined to become fit and active. Not in an obsessive way, but in a way that I can fit every single possible fitness experience into my repertoire. I want to run, I want to bike, I want to lift heavy and I want to rock climb. I want to try all sorts of classes and learn a martial art. I want to hike and swim. And don't forget rowing! I have the time, all I need is the money and the opportunity!

I think life is going to be easier when I find some friends that are interested in fitness and nutrition. I love my friends and cherish the time spent with them, but I know some of them are beginning to find my choice of conversational topics rather boring. It's time to broaden my circle to include others with the same goals (and hopefully some who have already reached those goals for new inspiration!)

As for obsession, sometimes I think the way to make a lasting change is to be somewhat obsessed, especially when embarking on a path that leads the absolute opposite direction from where you were before. If I forget my goals, it will be a lot easier to orally vacuum up a plateful of cookies. If I lose sight of the big picture, how will I pry my butt off the couch if the weather is less than stellar? I believe I prefer the word "focus" instead of "obsession".

So that's what I'll say from now on - I'm FOCUSED!!!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Mar. 9: How did it happen?

Going did I get to where I am now?

I remember precisely when I started bingeing on a regular basis. I lived out in the boonies with my baby. My husband at the time and I were fighting constantly so he would go away and stay gone for days at a time. I had no phone, this was before the internet, and I had no car. I lived on a highway so I wasn't really able to go take long walks either. I would walk with the baby about half a mile down the road to a little convenience store and with the change I scraped up from my husbands pockets when I did laundry I would buy candy and chips. Every time I found enough change to equal $5 I would trudge my ever-gaining self down the road for more food. Eventually we moved into town and I was happier and that behavior stopped briefly.

I have yoyo'd from 140-210 for the past 15 years. Every gain has with it a story of loneliness, isolation and depression. When I could not find comfort anywhere else I sought it in food. My father's illness and subsequent death brought me to my highest-ever non-pregnancy weight of 210, which is where I started my eat-clean journey.

Food doesn't make me feel good anymore. It doesn't make me feel bad either. I've become sort of food-neutral, which has been a big step towards a healthier attitude. How did I reach my food zen state?

This blog has helped more than I can ever express. Not just writing it but the fact that there are a few people out there reading it that can relate to the food/emotion relationship. Researching the food additives and learning about the side effects has educated me even more. By learning why certain things I eat trigger binges, I am able to avoid those things in my everyday life. I also journal both online and offline and this journey of self discovery has changed my life. The weight is falling away, finally, as I step into a new way of life.

For those of you that binge, how did it start for you? Do you remember when you began to do it? What was going on in your life at that time?

Monday, March 8, 2010

Mar. 8 : Shopping!

I had to go to Toronto today for some work I have been doing. The good thing about an hour and a half drive is that it gives you lots of time to think. I have been contemplating getting a gym membership, but money is tight in our household right now. I do have a bit put aside for it, but I have been vacillating. I discovered the YMCA has a sliding scale so I am going to go there and see if I can get something affordable. The other decision I made was to invest that money in some excellent, properly fitted running shoes.

It was a real learning experience. I went to a running specialty store. They have you take your shoes off and roll your pants legs up (of course I hadn't shaved my legs in a week! Nice) Then they put you on a treadmill and videotape your feet. Apparently I overpronate severely. My feet looked so weird. The running dude told me that is why I have had such severe ankle pain when I've tried to run in the past. We found a pair of shoes (unfortunately they only came in blue - ick) but had to special order my size because my feet are so narrow. I think this will be money very well invested. If I don't qualify for the YMCA subsidy this should help keep me active for months. I'll just keep up my push-ups and ab work and do some of my DVDs again for strength.

Another stop I made was at a health food place - a big one! I finally own Ezekiel products. I spent a fair bit of money but it should last awhile. I got Ezekiel muffins, cinnamon raisin bread, Genesis bread and wraps. Hallelujah. I've been looking for this stuff since I started eating clean at the beginning of December.

I also stopped at Ikea and got some fun new kitchen stuff totally unrelated to clean eating, just thought I'd gloat.

Today's eats have been way too low cal. I'm going to eat something with lots of protein after while to boost my intake. I tried vegetable sushi today and liked it. I am too chicken to try the raw fish kind - the thought of it turns my stomach. I walked the dog when I got home, so got a little workout in today.

Yep, shopping makes me happy!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Mar. 7: Results and Milestones

I mentioned last week that I had begun counting calories and measuring my food this week to try to break through this darned month long plateau. So drum roll...........................

It worked!!! After one week, I ended up with a loss of two pounds (exactly what I lost in the entire month of February!) Hooray! I'm so happy.

I haven't felt restricted this week. I averaged about 1360 over the course of the entire week, figuring in my off-plan meal as well. This coming week I'm going to bump it up about 100 calories a day. I want to experiment and see what my maximum intake can be while continuing losing at a rate of two pounds per week.

Today marks another milestone!

I've lost 20 pounds!

One more and I have hit the magic 10% that experts say marks a health improvement. I;m darned happy to get over this plateau and hopefully I can go another 20 pounds before hitting another one!

What have I learned from this? Clean eating, while it works, will not necessarily result in consistent weight loss without other checks and balances in place. All by itself, changing my eating habits to clean ones allowed me to lose the first 16 pounds with little real effort. Now, however, I have discovered, consistent results require more than just passively eating clean. I still strongly promote eating clean for all of the health benefits a chemical-free life can provide, and once I am at a maintenance weight, eating clean for the rest of my life will allow me to be fit and healthy with little dietary effort. I believe clean is the only way to eat. But for weight loss, weighing, measuring, and counting calories all seem to be a necessity for me.

Have a great weekend!