Tag Archives: weight loss

Fearless Friday (Navel Gazing Edition)

Bear with me as I use the internet as my free-ish therapist.

But First

An amusing anecdote

I don’t often use a thesaurus. When I do, it’s because the word I want is in my brain but not materializing, so I’ll use the thesaurus to try to suss out what I’m intending to say. I do love when other people use a thesaurus, though. Especially when they are obviously choosing words that they’re not entirely sure of. Today, I was using a thesaurus without having a specific word in mind because I wanted to be alliterative. I absolutely adore alliteration. ANYWAY. I wanted a synonym for “change” or “transformation” that started with “F.”

The only thing that came up was “fluctuation.” And that just made me laugh. Because fluctuating is not my goal. Fluctuating is my current state.

And Now for Something Completely Different

The last few years I’ve become a fearful person. I’ve lost a lot of the confidence I used to have. Part of that is being stuck in an employment situation where the feedback fluctuated (ha! used it!) between over-the-top praise and ridiculous, unfounded, mean-spirited criticism.

Part of that was being stuck in friend-lationships that weren’t healthy, because I glommed onto the first friendly folks when I moved to Portland and wasn’t as discerning as I should’ve been with my friend love.

Part of that was spending a lot of time worrying about saying or doing the wrong thing at the wrong time and upsetting the delicate ego balance that I tiptoed around starting in 2008.

Part of that is my natural state of being. I’ve been diagnosed with all sorts of fun (and sometimes contradictory) brain malfunctions. The older and more experienced I get, though, the more I realize that the one defining characteristic of everything my brain has ever done wrong is the overwhelming anxiety disorder.

I am good with routine. When I was working, my routine was

  1. Wake up early
  2. Make coffee
  3. Shower (or workout)
  4. Write with all the coffee
  5. Breakfast (and shower if there was working out)
  6. Work
  7. Pick up the Bean
  8. Make Dinner
  9. Put Bean to bed
  10. Read
  11. Bed
  12. Repeat

It was a good routine.

When I left the architect, my routine was disrupted. I was staying up later, not eating on days when no one was around to see if I was eating or not, I didn’t have Bean every day to keep my days steady, but I was still doing many of those things…just later. And working out fell by the wayside. I was staying up too late to get up early to write and workout. But it was no big deal. On nights I didn’t have the kid, I did the writing. It kind of worked.

When my job ended, everything just went tits up. I spent a lot of September and October alone in my house doing nothing. Not working out. Not writing. Not editing. I had all the time to make things happen, but I was too overwhelmed to get started.

Now we all know that to some degree I got over that, because my book was published this week, but I’ve still never gotten back to that routine. Every time I think I’m getting close, something happens to fuck it all up again.

It’s been a hard week. Releasing a book is stressful, even though it was the culmination of a lifetime of dreams. Having a child in a co-parenting situation is stressful, because I am not in control 50% of the time and I really like to be in control. Dealing with my recent rental situation is stressful because there were rats and the landlord and I disagree on a few financial things. Not having a job is stressful. Because money is awesome and I would like some of that stuff.

Do you know what helps my stress levels? Working out. Working hard. Being a little bit sore most of the time.

Getting to bed before eleven.

Getting up before six.

With my current mental state (fragile, in case you’re looking for another f-word), that isn’t happening. I need to find the switch to flip.

Self-care and self-love have fallen by the wayside in my attempt to throw all my energy into caring for my son and fighting all the battles that continually show up.

I just bought BexLife’s new book (at the recommendation of my PSM) in an attempt to find that spark that will help me reconnect with me. I signed up for Weight Watchers (something I’ve used to great effect in the past) as a way to be accountable for what I’m putting (or so very often, not putting) in my body. I have packed my swim bag and intend to drag my anxiety-ridden ass back to the pool (that is less than 3 blocks from my new digs) next week. I will take the boxes of work detritus out of the back of my car so I feel safe parking at a trail head and running in Forest Park. I have the tools I need.

I’m 40. There’s never going to be a better time to make my life everything I want it to be, and there’s no one who’s ever going to be able to make those changes for me.

(Except you. Each and every one of you. If you could all commit to buying my book once/day…that’d be cool. I mean really…what’s $2.99/day? That’s less than a coffee at Starbucks! *cue sad music and a montage of hungry, cold Amy who can’t even turn on the space heater in her office without tripping the surge protector*)

Pyramid Schemes

So I went to my nutritionist appointment on Monday. Because I am a boy scout (in that I am always prepared; I was never actually a boy scout) I came with a detailed spreadsheet of my caloric intake over the past week.

I think the first thing I said was, “I know what I’m doing wrong.”

The nutritionist (who is currently vying with my new gynecologist as medical professional I most want to marry) said, “Of course you do. Most people do.” And then gave me a handout on something called “what the hell” syndrome. That is not a real syndrome, but it is the thing that happens when you do something you didn’t mean to (like skip your morning workout or eat a pie) and then decide that your “diet” is blown for the rest of the day/week/whatever so you just forget about goals and eat another pie.

I struggle very much with all or nothing mentality, so that is a huge problem with me.

The other awesome thing that my new nutritionist said was when we started talking about ideal weight. I said that I felt most comfortable at about 25 lbs less than I am now, but that I was pretty sure I should shoot for a 40 lb loss to be in the right range. She said that what we wanted was for me to get to where I wanted to be (as long as it was healthy, blah, blah, blah) and not an arbitrary number on a chart. She also said that after meeting me, she thought it would take some pretty unhealthy behaviors to get me down 40 lbs.

So, I have an eating plan. It has a lot of vegetables on it. It’s not that I dislike vegetables, it’s just that I like cheese better. (Speaking of cheese, we talked about calcium intake, and I said I didn’t drink milk or eat yogurt. She said I wasn’t getting enough calcium. I mentioned that I eat cheese. Apparently cheese doesn’t count as ‘dairy.’ Nutritionist lady said I’d have to eat a lotof cheese to get the calcium I needed. I said I was up for the challenge, and she laughed. I was totally serious.)

Anyway – in addition to the plan that is not an all-the-cheese-you-can-eat plan, I have flashcards to remind me to be nice to me. One of them says, “would you say that to someone you cared about? Then why say it to yourself.” To be honest, I wouldn’t say most of the things I say to myself to people I disliked. (There are a couple people out there to whom I would like to say some…things…but mostly I’m a “if you can’t say something nice…” kind of person.

I think that what I really needed was for someone to help me get into the right head space. I need to be positive about myself and find some balance. Those things are way more important than arbitrary numbers on a chart. After all, I have a tiny person keeping tabs on what I’m doing and saying and I’d like to be a positive role model.

Anyhoosits! That’s about it for that. I’ll keep you updated. BUT – come back tomorrow for pics on the Bean (which is what I think 92% of my readership is interested in).

Scaling Back

So – As you may have guessed, I’ve been stressing about the scale. It doesn’t tell me what I want to hear (see?).

In addition to that stress, I may have mentioned that I am on a LOT of drugs. Seriously. Lots. One of the (many) interesting side effects is that I have a really hard time gauging satiety levels. I can’t really tell when I’m hungry and when I’m full. So, I’m pretty sure I’m overeating. The answer to that is, of course, to eat less. However, portion control was a problem for me even when I could feel that I was overeating. Now that I can’t even tell, I think it’s getting worse.

I eat pretty clean. I rarely have processed foods. I make good choices. Just too many of them. I know that weight loss is like 110% diet and 5% exercise (or something), and I’ve felt like I was failing in that regard.

And then, this morning, as I moseyed on over to my Google Reader, I saw this blog post title: “Why You Shouldn’t Make Weight Loss Your Primary Goal.” The ever inspiring MizFit had a guest blogger today talking about how the real goal should be to “get healthy.” Once you are healthy, everything else will follow.

My son, the amazing Alvie Bean, is starting to watch the architect & I more and more and is starting to ape our behavior. He deserves parents who make healthy choices, don’t obsess about arbitrary numbers, and know that exercise is just another word for fun.

Get this kid a blog already!

Get this kid a blog already!

My big challenge is going to be the eating, though. I am going to have to figure out a real caloric goal, since I can’t gauge on satiety, and then measure out all my portions. (Right? That’s going to be the best way, isn’t it?)

BUT – I think if I can get into that habit (which I used to do back when I was on WW 11 years ago when I first lost weight), everything else will fall into place. I love moving, pushing my body hard, exploring new physical limits – so as long as I ramp up slowly, that will be the easy (and fun) part. (Totally typoed part as party, which yes. Yes it is.)

And a healthy mama = a happy mama = a great role model for this guy.

2013-02-15 10.00.04

…and then Joss Whedon and I saved the world

Hello, party people! I had the greatest dream the other night that involved a quest with Joss Whedon to save the world. We did it, but I had to leave the architect behind! Alvie got to come, though! He was a great help.

I am here for encouragement and motivation and some good, old-fashioned kicks in the pants.

So – here’s my problem(s):

  1. My baby is 10 months & 5 days old. I have not lost a single pound since September. I have 13 lbs to go to be at my pre-baby weight. I am not breastfeeding. I am not the kind of person who can cut out a food group for weight loss (so, no vegetarian/vegan; no paleo, etc.). I eat lots of healthy food. I don’t eat much processed foods/refined sugar.  Should I get myself to a nutritionist/dietician post-hasty?
  2. My right hip is all janky. It hurts when I walk and run. However, I can minimize the pain while walking if I concentrate on posture and form. However, I cannot run AND concentrate on form at the same time. My doctor told me it will “probably just get better” and in the meantime “just don’t run.” Thoughts? Should I get a second opinion? I’m pretty sure that my wonky hip is the result of a weak core (due to pregnancy, mild diastasis recti, SPD, and a C-section) combined with loose joints (due to pregnancy). I am yoga-ing like a mad woman, am going to try some pilates, but am thinking maybe I need something more?
  3. I am scared of new gym classes, because what if I die? I have a 7 day trial membership to a gym with scary yet awesome sounding work-outs at 5:30 am every day (i.e. the perfect time for me to work out!), but I am on day 4 of my 7 day trial and have yet to show up, due to FEAR! (And tiredness.) Someone, motivate me!

I get so frustrated with myself. I want to be all strong and fit and badass (and fit into my awesome work clothes and designer jeans) again, and it’s taking so long! SO LONG!

I guess it’s good that this is my main concern now, and not whether I will have a panic attack while driving, or if I’ll be able to adequately care for my son due to crazy, but now that I’m of sound mind again, I’d really, really, really like to be of sound body.

Any advice, encouragement, verbal smackdowns you’d like to offer would be welcome!

Goal Amy...lean, fit, and with a burger and beer.

Goal Amy…lean, fit, and with a burger and beer.

Modeling Good Habits

I worry about setting a good example for my son, especially now that he’s eating solid foods.

My food intake is pretty good, I think, but I need to be more mindful of my eating. I want to work on that a LOT over the next few months, because I want Alvie to have a good example. I need to do three things:

  1. Slooooooooooow Down. It is not a race.
  2. Assess hunger & satiety levels frequently
  3. Stop when full.

I am actually pretty good at #2. I usually recognize when I have eaten enough food. My problems are really #1 & #3. I know I’m full, but I just keep going. I like food. Weird.

I think I will be done breast feeding soon. Not necessarily because I want to be done, but there are times when you have no choice. There are a lot of thing that affect supply, and I am hitting the motherlode when it comes to finding all of those things.

I have lost all but 12 of the pounds that I gained during pregnancy, and I’m currently at a plateau for loss. I think if I can start modeling those good habits, plus make sure that my diet is mostly fruit and veggies (I should just start eating the same things my son eats, only a wee bit more).

I recently had my body mass and BMR tested. My base metabolic rate is 1555. Just to live, my body burns 1555 calories. That does not account for breastfeeding, which burns about 300 additional calories (although probably not at the small levels that I’m doing now). So, if I make it my goal to have between 1500-1800 calories per day once I’m done breast feeding, I think that I can start to lose the remaining weight. In addition to losing the rest of the pregnancy weight, I would like to lose an additional 20ish lbs. I want to be my lean, mean running machine self again.

When I think about what really turned the corner for me 10 years ago in mood uplift + weight loss, I know it was exercise. I started a consistent workout program for the first time in, well, ever. I also met the architect. He made me happy. Happy made me want to be a better person. That led to exercise and weight loss.

Right now, I am not happy (although I am working on that, aggressively), but I know I can be again. That I will be again. And being happy is the #1 thing I want to model to my son is happiness. And for me, part of happiness is feeling strong and fit and healthy. And part of being healthy is good eating habits, so it comes full circle.