Monday, September 27, 2010

Tightening Up!

So I've been doing some thinking.  Crap, that means another rant.  That's right!  If you did not sign up for a rant, please navigate away from this page.

:) OK, everyone else with me?

Weight loss is a tricky thing, when you aren't on a "diet."  Tricky in that it is an ever moving and fluid thing.  I don't lose the perfect 2 pounds a week, when I'm eating well, I lose about 1 per week and then one week a month I lose 2-3.  So on average I lose around 5-6 pounds a month. 

Some people wouldn't be very happy with that kind of slow progress.  Sometimes I'm "over" it meaning I want to be at my goal weight already!  But I haven't plateaued in awhile so I'm feeling pretty good about being down almost 70 pounds.  I decided to do a few things to motivate myself and get me over the over it feeling.

1) I'm going to schedule my hair appointment to get my hair cut.  What does that have to do with weight loss?  Well, its a reward, getting my hair cut somewhere - I don't do it often (maybe once every 4 months) and thankfully my hair is healthy enough not to need it (even with the dye).  But I'm definitely ready for a change of sorts, nothing too drastic, I don't think, but the anticipation of coming out a "new woman" always makes it a fun outing. I always look forward to a hair cut and it is my reward for reaching 75 pounds down.  I have 7 pounds to go to reach that so I'm making the appointment for exactly 1 month from now.  This will motivate me by kicking my tater into gear knowing I need to be down 7 pounds by the time haircut time arrives! 

2) I'm going back to 90/10.  I tend to eat well about 80 percent of the time and 20 percent of the time indulge in things that aren't necessarily bad for me but aren't...necessary (like dark chocolate every day).  I'm going to limit my dark chocolate intake, will still have some daily, but not what I've been consuming.  And I'm going to tighten up on my eating to make sure I'm not consuming unnecessary foods or extra portions of something just because I like the way it tastes.  So I'll be a little more conscious - notice I did NOT say strict, I said conscious, of what I'm eating.  Awareness is what it is all about.  So when I ate an ice cream bar last week I was fully aware that I was eating it.  And fully aware that it was probably a wasted 200 calories and there was probably green dye in it (mint ice cream).  But it was good and I have no regrets.  Just awareness.

Sound like a diet?  It's not at all.  It is simply a heightening of my awareness of the healthful content of the food I am ingesting.  So there.  Still not counting.  Still not relying on pre-packaged fake diet food.  But I will limit the sweet potato fries.  :)

Can you see the difference I'm describing between a diet and the way I eat?  The way I eat keeps getting tweaked and changed, but the constant in this equation is this - I have been steadily losing weight for 13 months - even spending a month inactive due to my ankle injury.  Obviously I'm doing something right.  Just saying.

Another reason to kick it into a higher gear before the holidays get here is the challenge that time of year presents.  I plan on indulging in crustless pumpkin pie (who likes the crust anyway?) and whatever other goodies come my way on Thanksgiving - in moderation of course.  I was not at all miserable last Thanksgiving and I had only lost 18 pounds at that point.  But I lost weight that week - it helped that I walked 5 miles on Thanksgiving day...

That's the key - keep on moving when you plan to eat more unnecessary foods than normal.  It is almost a social norm to gain weight during the holidays.  I plan to continue steering away from the norms that helped me get fat in the first place and continue to lose!  How else will I reach 100 pounds down by 12/31?  Seriously. 

Part of my motivation is also thinking about my running.  I wonder how much faster I will be another 40 pounds down.  How much easier running will be on my lungs, heart, legs, and tater! 

I'm doing a 5k race in October, the Champions of Hope race in Dothan that raises money for cancer research.  I walked (with some jogging) this same course last year with Elizabeth, only 2 months into my healthier lifestyle, in 58 minutes. It's a rough course with a few key miserable hills.  I'm of course going to run it this year...and can't wait to do a comparison between how fast I completed it last year and this year.  Of course I should knock 5-10 mins off just due to having a fussy 5 year old that I had to carry part of the way - ha!  This year its just me and the road - and my parents and little girl there cheering me on.  That will be cool.

I went shopping at Kohl's this weekend, yeah, I know I already shopped at Ross last week but my Kohl's shopping trips never have any aim except to see how much I can get for very little.  I never spend more than $20-$30 there and I get a ton of good deals.

This time I picked up a pair of capri jeans made by Daisy Fuentes for $8.99.  I looked them over and realized they were a size 14 (remember I just got into a 16), but they looked big.  I told myself it wouldn't hurt to just try them on, and I could be disappointed or I could score a new "goal" outfit.  Imagine my shock and excitement when they easily slid on and buttoned!  And looked good!  I was ecstatic.  I also scored a denim jacket for $9 and a few other odds and ends.  I felt amazing wearing my size 14 capris the other night.  I wanted to tell everyone!  Props to Daisy Fuentes for giving a little "give" to your clothing made a thick chick very happy.  Even though that is probably why they were on clearance - it also means they made some size 14 girls feel happy when they were too big and they had to put them back! A good thing for society overall.  Give the woman a nobel peace prize!

So that's enough ranting for now.  All good stuff, all the download of my brain as I continue on this journey to saving my own physical life.  I'm excited about each chapter and this one, "tightening up" is no different.  I know I will see successes as I have along the way as I still have aLOT to lose!

It's been BROUGHT!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Upside of Down

Hey all!

What a week this has been!  Things are going swell...and I'm down another pound!  New weight is 216.8 and I am down 68 pounds.  I can't wait to reach 75 down, I'll be treating myself to a new hairdo I decided.  And I'm getting so close to 100! 

I can't imagine what that will feel like.  Heck, I couldn't even imagine losing 20 at one point. 

Funny health related things to happen this week...

1) Some friends at work went to a fast food restaurant for take out.  I'm not judging, I did ask why they didn't ask me if I wanted anything.  My friend responded, "well, I didn't think you would eat Red No. 5, so I didn't bother!"  Hilarious!  I will still eat a greasy cheeseburger every now and then friends, but I have to really be in the mood for it and it doesn't happen often.  Its just funny that these new friends of mine only know me this way, not the girl with the eating problem that I once was.

2) I put on a dress this morning to wear to work.  I was excited to wear it, I remember when I wore it regularly it was really tight.  Well, I waited too long to wear it (sigh).  It is HUGE on me and looked ridiculous. I was disappointed, which I know sounds funny, but you know how it is when you get your heart set on wearing something and then you can't.  I found myself in Dothan today and stopped off at Ross.  Its been awhile since I've been there...scored 2 dresses for less than $30.  Made up for the one I need to give away now!  I need to look at my clothes and decide if I want to keep certain things to have them taken in or just get rid of it. Since I'm such a clearance shopper it might make sense to get rid of stuff and start over...hmmm...decisions decisions.

3) I ran three miles this morning. That isn't funny, its awesome.  The funny part is this - I realized on my Garmin that I was about .15 short of 3 miles when I reached my house so I ran around my house a few times.  The last lap around I looked up and my husband was watching me from the kitchen smiling.  When I got inside he told me that I was thinking back to when we first got married (and I weighed 180) and how if he had told me then I would be a runner today I would have laughed.  He is so right!  I don't always love the alarm clock going off in the morning but I love love love the rush and sense of accomplishment I get from running!  I'm so happy I get to do it.

So this week is National Rehab Professionals Week.  I need to give a shout out to my physical therapist, Jess, who helped me get back on my feet, literally!  Without her help there is no way I could be a runner today. 

Along my journey I've had several different people who have been integral to my progress.  They know who they it from just encouraging me to holding me accountable to being excited along with me.  My best friend from childhood is a dietician and now a PA and I always gush to her about how my healthy lifestyle is going and she is genuinely happy for me.  I know all of you reading this are.  That means a ton.

So the theme today is have fun with your journey...and find people in your life who can help you.  There is an upside to going down!  It's sometimes a bumpy road but will be SO worth all of the hard work!


Saturday, September 18, 2010

I can DO it!

Wahoo!  Ran my 3rd 5k race today.  I only had 2 weeks to train back up to the 5k distance - 2 miles has been my max since late June when it was so hot I stopped endurance work and focused on speed training.  The speed training definitely paid off as my average mile time was 13:21 vs 14:20 in June.  I didn't run the entire time, I stopped to walk a half mile, then burned it to the finish line.  Bottom line for the day, I still beat my personal best of 44:27 in June with the new time of...wait for it...42:47(ish) - I think I stopped my watch a few seconds after I finished.  :)

I'm pretty excited about today.  Part of me is slightly disappointed in not having run the *whole* time...but the other part of me thinks of how my feet bled a year ago when I first started walking.  And I'm a full minute faster on my average (running) mile time than I was 3 months ago which is huge.  I have come so far and now is not the time to ignore that!  67 pounds are gone from my body - and I'm well on my way to losing another 50.  I can't even imagine how I will feel running this same race next year!

My point in all of this is that you can't give up.  No matter what stage you are in of your journey, there are bound to be bumps in the road.  Hills that seem impossible to climb.  Brownies that seem to appear at every corner.  Just keep going and don't stop.  Remember why you started and reflect on how far you have come!  Set realistic goals for yourself for your healthy lifestyle - don't go on a diet - and don't start eating or drinking something you can't stick with forever...because the journey doesn't end.  It only gets better and you get happier.  That's all there is too it!
For today I'm a happy chick because of how far I've come and I'll choose to focus on that instead of how far I have left to go.

Sound good to you?


Sunday, September 5, 2010

Size 16 Never Looked SO GOOD!

Exciting times!

Preparing for another 5k race on September 18th.  Decided a week ago to do it for sure and wish I had decided 5 weeks ago so I could be sure to be prepared!  I am finding, however, that my speed training has paid off so far.  I've improved my mile time by two minutes.  This sounds huge if you are a 10 min miler - but I'm not - I started as a 14:30 min miler and now I'm averaging around 12:30...only problem...I can't quite get past 2 miles!  So I have some work to do over the next 2 weeks to get there.  I'm going to try to run 5x a week until I get up to the distance even if I have to slow down a little bit.  The thing is, my body likes running around 11:30-12:00 min miles.  It feels most natural.  I just know I need to save some juice for the rest of the 3.1 miles!  :)

I went shopping at one of my favorite stores yesterday, Cato's.  I love Cato's.  Even when I was heavy a great portion of my wardrobe came from there - because the "big girl" clothes still looked cute and stylish.  I told Elizabeth last year when I started this journey that I would one day shop on the "other" side of the store, the "skinny" side. See, Cato's is divided by normal sized clothing (sizes 2-16) and plus sized clothing (14w-28w which by the way I always thought the "w" meant wide but my mom assures me it means womens. lol!)  The store is divided directly in half.  I used to look longingly at the normal side of the store wishing I was "normal."

Well, yesterday, 2 of my 3 purchases came from the skinny side of Cato's!  I bought a pair of size 16 jean capri's.  They fit me like a glove but don't look nasty (like muffin top camel toe nasty - everything is where it should be) so that's good.  :)  They are sort of meant to be like those skinny jeans people wear but in capri's.  They are so cute!  It was way exciting to get into a size 16.  I felt all of my 18s getting loose but was afraid to try on a 16 and be disappointed as sometimes since I am proportionate with my weight gain/loss it takes me longer to drop a size especially around the hips/butt/stomach.  Another 25 lbs and I'll be in the size 14 jeans that have been in my drawer, untouched for several years - with the tag still on them! I bought them when I was a 16 and then just got bigger.  I know now that I will get time.

For now its nice to have a pair of capris, my last pair was a size 22 so you can see I went straight from jeans into shorts this I have a good pair of transition pants to fall.  Also both of my shirts were from the skinny side.  Man that feels so good!

At the register, there was a customer talking to the cashier and she looked at Elizabeth when she saw me put my clothes up on the counter she said "are you getting some new clothes little girl?"  I looked at the lady and told her they were mine - then I laughed and asked if they looked too young and hip for me?  She laughed and said no, but proceeded to pick up the pants and say, "I wish I could get into these."  I told her it was a first for me to be in that size, today.  That I had spent the last year trying working hard to get to that point and wore a size 24 a year ago. She said congratulations and she and the cashier were genuinely happy for me.  It was a nice moment shared with strangers.

Seriously - my jeans were a size 24 in August 2009.  I can't even comprehend that.  I didn't keep them - I gave them away with the rest of my 22/24 wardrobe to a family who lost everything in a fire and the mother was my size.  I thought about keeping them but knew she could get use out of them.

I figure I'll buy a pair of size 24s for $5 at the Vanity Fair outlet when I'm down to my goal weight to do the amazing and cliche "big jeans" picture. :)  Still have plenty of time for that.

So you may be reading this and have never been as big as a size 24 or 16 so its hard to identify.  But its like going from a 12 to a 4 if that helps.  No matter what, it feels amazing and I was on cloud nine after that clearance purchase.  And yes, I'm still only buying clearance or consignment since I'm not near my goal size yet...and in all honesty I am not sure what my goal size will be, or even weight for that matter.  My main "goal" is to get my BMI under 25.  To be out of the overweight and obese categories. I'm around 35.3 BMI right now - started at 47.  So we're a little over halfway there!  Weight I imagine I'll stop around 165 or so.  I'll probably be a size 10.  It all just depends on what my body feels like and how I perform athletically as well as my overall health.  Not pressuring myself too much about that yet.  Though, if I was...I'm halfway there!  lol.

So at 219, I am only 5 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight.  I'm officially under my last "successful weight watchers" weight from 2006 (I literally weighed in at 220 for like 6 weeks in a row - I was on a serious maintenance streak for some reason).  Seriously, it has been 4 years since I weighed under the 220s.  It feels amazing.

I'm expecting another good loss this week due to where I am in my cycle (sorry guys if there are any reading this) and all the running I plan on doing. 

One other funny clothing side note - I need to buy new bras!  Not necessarily a cup size issue I don't think (though we'll see) but they are all too big even clasped at the tightest clasp.  I seriously need to fix that - and I won't be buying those on clearance though I hope they are on sale.  They should last me another 40 pounds or so - and I may buy where I need to clasp on the loosest clasp so I can grow down into them. :)

Weird things to think about as your body changes so dramatically.  It's all good though!  I'm feeling good and that is what matters.

Thanks for your support and following me on this journey.  It ain't over until the fat lady (me) decides to bust out a new blueprint changing song...hmmmm...maybe I should write a song about this?  In the meantime, here's a good theme song to my changing blueprint... :)   enjoy!  on my running playlist of course...