Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Aminals and Salt Water Drops

So!  Things are going well over in my little corner of the world.  I just finished day 5 of my boot camp.  On my off days, I've walked.  Yesterday I took an awesome walk along the Chicago River.  I've even taken some walks on my boot camp days.  I feel more energetic than I have in a long time.  Oh such a glorious feeling.  I love when I break a sweat and it rolls down my face into my eyes.  It lets me know I'm working hard.

Now, that being said, my eating has been wonky.  I've had days where I'm not hungry and days where I could eat and feel hungry 20 minutes later.  I've not noticed a pattern as of yet.  Basically what I'm doing is logging when I eat and what I eat.  I've not been counting the calories, just being accountable to myself to write it down.  I've been eating mostly healthy, so that's all good.  My weight has been somewhat the same for the past few days, but I'm not worried about it.  I'm very happy with my progress these past couple of weeks.

Journal-ling has been an exercise I should have done a while ago.  There are so many thoughts and feelings I had hidden away that I shouldn't have buried.  It has been so freeing to get them written down.  Some days I don't write more than what happened during the day, some days, I write a lot.  But every day, I write.  No matter how little or big, I write.  Some of the things I discovered: I really need to learn to love myself again.  I'm not perfect I shouldn't expect myself to be.  I've learned from my mistakes and also realized that things have happened for reasons, and because of those things, I continue to grow.

Every single day, after I write... I finish the day's entry with a one sentence, usually 3 word statement telling myself that I am awesome, or I will succeed.  Whatever floats my boat for the day.  Because the most important thing of all of this is I am doing it.  And by doing it, I will succeed.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

I'm not perfect, but I am awesome!

My plan is working.

Ok, granted, I'm 3 days down... but I am finding that recording everything in my little notebook with the times I eat is easier than hunting and pecking them online into a calorie counting program.  I've also found... evenings are the worst for me.  I mean, I kinda knew, but, this is just confirming it.  Even though I think... Man, I gotta write down that I just ate that! I will sometimes eat it, sometimes, I won't.  Eating wise, I'm eating well.  Even though I've had a couple of things I wouldn't consider perfect (gummy bears last night, for example) I wrote it down.

I'm also toying with green smoothies in the morning.  I made one with kale, kiwi and oranges the other day that was delicious!

I've done a workout/movement/activity of some persuasion every day as well.

I'm really impressed with the boot camp app I got. It is 18 workouts... at 3 workouts a week.  I'm doing a beginner routine with body and exercise tubes.  The first workout was a test of sorts... Record how many of each you could do in 2 minutes... knee push-ups, sit-ups and squats.  I think I did fairly well.  I got 35 push-ups, 30 sit-ups and 42 squats.  Let me tell you, I am one sore girl today, but it's a great kind of sore.  The day 2 workout, which could be done the day after the evaluation, was a interval workout of marching in place, jogging in place, high knee jogging, a couple Pilates moves and side planks.  The workout was 25 minutes.  The best part?  There is video coaching by the lady who made the program and they tempo adjust your playlist to the exercise you're doing.  I loved that... when it was time to jog, my music sped up!

Since it's a 3x a week program, I'm going to continue with the cardio-type workouts on the off days... walking, xbox dancing games or bike rides.  Something that makes me break a sweat.  If I'm not sweating, I'm not doing it right. :)

And I know this is a lot of water weight etc, but I'm down 5.2 pounds thus far. But still, it's 5 pounds!

Also, writing in my journal has been very beneficial mentally.  I've written down the feelings and thoughts that have been swimming around in my mind.  Getting them out of my mind has been a wonderful blessing.  I can feel the weight coming off of my heart and soul.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Starting Over Again


I hoped I would never see those numbers again. Three years ago when I went below 300 for the first time since sometime during high school, I cried for joy. This morning, I cried tears of pain. 

I let the failure of my relationship recently break me.  It fed the devils in my head that tell me I am not worth it, that I am fat and I just have to learn to live with it.  The devils were kept at bay during the relationship because there was someone there, someone who told me that I was worth it.  Someone who believed in me.  When that was no longer there, when I stopped hearing those things, my mind took over. 

Rationally, I knew none of this was real, I was dreaming up things that weren't there. Thinking thoughts I knew I shouldn't be thinking.  I ignored myself.  I fed my feelings.  I let the autoimmune disease I was diagnosed with and the steroids I had to take be the excuse.  But that's all they were, an excuse.

So now, I need to answer these questions: What am I doing to myself? Why am I doing it?

I truly do not know the full answers to the questions. I know I have given up on myself and I know that it needs to stop. I cannot continue going on this spiral slope. It needs to stop now.

I have the tools, I have the knowledge. Today is the time to kick it into gear. To begin again.

The biggest step to this begin again is not eat right. It is not to workout. Yes those are important steps, but they are not the biggest. The biggest step is the hurdle that is living inside my head. The one that says I need a reason, I need to find my motivation, and asking where I can look. No more. Because that reason, that motivation, that where I'm supposed to look, is all inside of me. It is me. I can't pull my reasons for being healthy from others anymore. I can't look for my motivation from everywhere else, thinking I'm not enough. When in reality, I should be enough. I should be the reason. I am worth spending the time and energy on myself.

I watch Biggest Loser. I don't watch it for the quick weight loss solution. I don't watch it for workout suggestions. I watch it for the mental struggles the contestants battle with themselves. Because, I see myself in so many of them. I cry with them as they figure things out. I then cry more, because I haven't been able to do that yet. I know the steps, but I can't jump the hurdle.

I had pondered joining into my office's Biggest Loser competition, but then I realized, I would be looking elsewhere for that motivation when in reality, I need it to come from me.  So I chose not to join.

My plan for the next eight weeks is simple. I am going to prove to myself I can do it, that I am worth it.  My goals for the next six weeks are to go through the motions of doing what I know I need to do. In doing all of these things, I will jump that hurdle in my mind.

Eating Goals:
  • fruits and veggies. No limit. I must eat at least 8 servings a day.
  • water. I got away from drinking it. I must drink at least 8 glasses a day.
  • snacks. If I must, they should be fruits or veggies only.
  • no more eating and watching TV at night. TV is off while we have dinner.

Fitness Goals:
  • Walks at work during lunch time.
  • Activity daily.  I grabbed a new app from my phone.  It has 18 days worth of "boot camp" workouts.  I'm going to do these as well as walking, bike riding and playground workouts. Rest days are important, but that doesn't mean I don't need to be active on those days.  Long slow walks are perfectly acceptable.

Life Goals:
  • Log food and movement in mini paper journal with times.
  • Journal.  I bought a paper journal this morning for this reason.  I need to write my feelings more.  I am seemingly afraid to put them out for others, I must, however, write them for myself.

Why eight weeks?  Well, the next NF challenge starts next week, but I started this yesterday.  That covers 7 weeks.  As there is generally a week between NF challenges, I plan on covering that as well. :)  My hope is that after eight weeks of going through the motions, I will see some real changes... not only in my body, but in my mind.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Physical vs Emotional

Since my bariatric surgery 8 years ago, it was grilled into my brain, "Don't let yourself get hungry.  Eat every 3-4 hours."

This is a very common thought pattern for morbidly obese people, or really anyone losing weight.  If you don't allow yourself to get hungry, you have better control over the amount of food you eat.  For me, when I felt hungry it was always something other than physical hunger.  But it wasn't until recently when I toyed with Intermittent Fasting that I understood that.

I knew I was an emotional eater.  I knew that I'd eat when bored, tired or sad. I would eat to fill holes in what I was feeling, or to cover up/not feel what I was feeling. Even after some therapy and medication to help with the depression, I still emotionally ate.

Think about it. Most happy family functions or friend celebrations revolve around food. So, to my brain, eating brought happy times. Times of love and laughter. Things I was missing in my everyday life.

When I came to Nerd Fitness and started reading about Paleo more in depth. Thinking about intermittent fasting... Not eating every 3-4 hours sounded so foreign to me. What exactly would happen if I let myself get hungry? What would my altered intestinal tract think of it? Could I do it?

The first day I did an IF morning, I felt good. I had black coffee and water from when I woke up at 5:30 until around 1pm. Why did I eat at 1? Was I hungry? I wasn't sure. What I was sure of, was I had a killer headache. I ate a good Paleo meal and felt better. Did I overeat? Not at all. Were the rest of my meals that day normal sized? Yes.

I continued this way for about two weeks. Waiting until afternoon time to eat. Listening to my body, ignoring my mind. By the end of my experiment, I knew what physical hunger, for me, felt like.

What did I learn? Don't be afraid to not eat on a schedule. Don't be afraid to let myself feel real hunger. Emotional eating, is exactly that. Me fueling my emotions by trying to fuel my body. Emotional eating will likely be a struggle for the rest of my life. However now, I know the difference (most of the time) and can work at controlling it with more knowledge. 

Monday, January 2, 2012

First Nerd Fitness Challenge of 2012

Being a nerd, I was trying to find a cleverly nerdy title to kick off the year. This one really works for me. And then, when searching for an image that would be awesome to put with it I found this one. (which is too big for the forum).

It states:
Just 3 steps to enjoy your life - Ctrl + Alt + Del...
1. Control Yourself
2. Look for Alternative Solutions
3. Delete the situation which gives you trouble

Main Challenge Goal!
My main goal of this first challenge of 2012 is to restart my journey within this awesome community so I can lean on y’all for support and count on you to kick my ass when I’m being a dufas. My weight loss goal for this 7 weeks is aim for 30 pounds. Yes, that is quite a lot and if I fail, that is OK, but that is my goal. I think, given that most of my weight is from steroids and eating wrong... as I'm getting weaned off the 'roids and eating super clean, the weight will melt off pretty quickly.

  • 100% Paleo, Autoimmune protocol
    • Eliminate: Grains, Nuts, Seeds, Eggs, Tomatoes, Peppers, Dairy, Potatoes, Legumes (inc green beans). I’ll still cook with butter.
    • In Feb, reintroduce one at a time for 1 week, see if any reaction. Reintroduction will be in this order: Eggs, Green Beans, Peppers, Tomatoes, Nuts/Seeds. Leave out grains, diary, all other legumes and potatoes.
    • I’ll be gauging reaction by not only how I feel but if I notice any difference in my skin and the effects of the vasculitis.
    • Side Note: Fruit, I’ll limit to at max, one serving a day, but aiming to stay away for the most part. Fruit for me is usually either apples or berries.
  • Because my main goal is weight loss, I do need to pay attention to maintaining a calorie deficit. Due to this, I will be logging my food into MyFitnessPal as well playing with DietSnaps and PaleoTrack to see if once I get the hang of things, I can stop keeping such a close eye on things (calories), and more just do a general knowledge check.

  • Strength Training via Primal Blueprint Fitness 2x a week.
    • Starting Levels:
      • Push-Ups - Level 1 (Wall Push-Ups)
      • Overhead Press - Level 1 (Elevated Jackknife Press)
      • Pull-Ups - Level 1 (Chair-Assisted 2 Leg)
      • Squats - Level 4 (Full Squat)
      • Plank/Side Plank - Level 1 (Hand/Knee Plank/Side Plank)
  • Active/Play 3x a week for at least 30 minutes per day. This can be in the form of walks, playing Kinect with mini-me or anything else that gets me off my butt and sweating.

  • Come up with design for basement renovation. This includes finding a free drafting/drawing thingy to “blueprint” the design (which covers my learn a new thing every month goal)
  • Complete two Art/Crafts Projects.
  • Read two books.

Possible Challenges Foreseen
  • Mini-me’s 10th birthday is on the 12th. He wants Chinese food and a donut cake... Working on this! Wonder if I can everything myself and make it paleo... That could be a challenge goal!
  • Because my mom is ill and currently very restricted on what she can do, and that she is/was the primary caregiver of mini-me as well as my sister’s mini-mes, we’re needing to switch things up and change who cares for the minis. It seems I’ll be having the three minis every weekend or a combination thereof... This could become interesting.

Liquid Awesome

So, it's a new year and I've decided that I'm changing things up with my diet and my blogging.  I'm going to aim to post some recipes of things I make at home.  Since I have a ton of kale at home, I decided to make some soup.  After thinking a bit, I thought "Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana!"  Only... it's made with cream and tomatoes... both of which I'm not eating right now.  So, I give you my version!

Trisha's Sausage Kale Spinach Soup aka "Liquid Awesome"

I started off making the broth using pork neck bones.  I pan-fried them up in some olive oil, dusted with a couple pinches of salt.

Neck Bones inna Pan!

Neck Bones all browned and yummy.
One all nice and brown I added them to the stock pot and filled it with water.  I let the water come to a boil and scrapped off all the scummy white stuff.  That is pretty much just nasties from the bones floating to the top.  Skim it off, let boil for about 10 minutes until no more nasties surface.

Once it was good and clear I threw in a bunch of veggies.  In my case it was mushrooms, sugar snap peas, carrots, onion and green beans.  Oooh!  And some garlic.

Floating veggies in stock!
I let this boil for 1.5 hours then strained the stock and split it in half. (I was making two soups)

Stock is ready for straining!

Now, time to get the Liquid Awesome making.  To start, I cut up and cooked 4 slices of bacon.

Added about 10 baby carrots cut up.

Bacon and carrots!
Then a pound of Sage Pork Sausage and cooked until no longer pink.

Sausage, bacon and carrots.
I dumped the meat and carrots into the stock and got the veggies.  For this I used a head of purple flowering kale and a bunch of spinach.  I roughly chopped them up and added them to the soup.

Purple food is so pretty..

This is one colorful soup!
Mixed everything all up and let it cook for a few hours in the crockpot.

I love the colors!
 The kale lost it's color, but the flavor of this soup is spot on.  It was so delicious the kids were eating it and loving every bite.

My bowl of "Liquid Awesome"

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Some days...

Some days you feel lost.
Some days you need a friend.
Some days you want a hug.
Some days you just need a place to spew your thoughts.
Some days you just need a place to vent.
Some days you just want to throw the towel in and give up.
Some days you want to fight.
Some days you just want to walk away.

Today, I feel a lot of these things.

There is so many things going on in my life right now.  While I try to eat well, I've not been.  I start my days off well enough and then somewhere along the line, my eating turns to crap.  It's easy.  This creates a viscous cycle. I eat something I shouldn't be... I feel bad... I want to eat more, because eating does something in my brain that makes me feel less sad/bad/depressed... So on and so forth.

My emotions are out of whack.  The medications I'm on are doing funny things with my brain and my body.  They maybe normal things for the drugs, but they're funny things to me.

The medications aren't the only thing effecting me.  I've had a really hard time of things with "the great move-out" and failure of relationship.  All of this happened at the same time and things snowballed.  Things within me, my emotions, feelings, thoughts...

I don't like feeling so... lost and out of control of my life.  Days like today, I want to throw the towel in and say "screw it".

But then I remember... no, I want to live a healthy, happy life.  I don't want to be in this cycle that I've been in for the past few months.

I've reached out for help from a friend and it helps, a lot actually.. He helps me with my eating.  We talk about our faith and are even listening to a sermon series together... which is helping me in my own faith tremendously.  Yet, I hate feeling so dependent on someone else for the help.  I feel like I need so much at times, that I'm going to end up smothering him with my thoughts and feelings... my crying out for help.  So I end up holding things back.  Which isn't going to help me in the long run.  I need to find a happy medium on reaching out for help when needed and trying to help myself some without feeling so lost.

I have a lot of things I need to work on.  My eating, my exercising, my faith, my health, my budget and spending and just general feeling like my life is on track.  I've been working on creating my list of goals for 2012 and my sub-list of goals for a six week Nerd Fitness challenge that starts on Jan 2nd. I'll be hitting on all of the areas I need to work on, but not in a way that I'll feel overwhelmed.  I need to remember that on top of everything I am a single mother who works full time.  There are only so many hours in a day and I need my sleep!