Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Murderer of Carbs (Annie)

You made it! Yay you!

Last Sunday I started my day off with two cinnamon rolls and five cookies. The night before at a Halloween party I had five rice krispy peanut butter bars, four pumpkin cookies, a small snickers, one brownie, a bowl of chili, and seven desperate stalks of raw broccoli. The broccoli was my sad attempt to mix up the digestive process and keep things from melting into my bloodstream too fast.

To be honest, I haven't done this in about six months. I eat dessert when I want to, but it's always calculated and carefully consumed. Stuffing my face? 128 pounds is not conducive with this kind of eating. I was actually 131 yesterday, but 128 is THE WEIGHT. I saw it flash on the scale one morning three weeks ago and that was it, I was hooked. I do so much better when I have a slightly unreachable goal. If I'm always working on 128, 130 is easy to maintain.

To keep from eating the other six cookies in the zip lock bag last Sunday, I actually ran the bag full of tap water and drowned the cookies. It was my only escape. That's right, I am a cookie murderer. It's the price of skinny.

The thing is, we're all going to fall off, jump ship, or dig in. There is no eater out there who is immune to everything all the time. The key is knowing how to get a grip on the ladder and pull yourself back up. Ever notice how hard it is to get OUT of water? It's so easy to just float around all weightless. It's the hauling of the body back to dry land that painfully reminds us of the actuality of the situation. It's like stepping on the scale after a binge.

And so, here are a few of my tips for defying frosted, buttered, candied gravity.

1. Sugar free. When I'm freaking out about life and turn to chocolate, I go sugar free. It sounds so unappetizing but it's not. The Russel Stover's thin mints are great. They aren't quite good enough to binge on (and lend some serious bathroom time in case you do), but they're really strong flavored and hit the spot.

2. Water. I know, we all hear it all the time. I would die without my Jug. I have a 32 oz disgustingly thrashed jug that I fill up routinely throughout the day--especially at night. I had four pumpkin cupcakes for dinner tonight. I have washed them down with 1 1/2 jugs of ice water over the past few hours. And you know what? I don't feel one bit bad.

3. Drown it. As I mentioned with the cookies, I'm all about soaking, splashing, and drowning those beautiful tempting white carbs. If it's three o'clock and they're calling my name, I send those sirens back to the sea. That's right, I threw a beautiful cream cheese frosted chocolate chip pumpkin muffin straight into the soggy mixing bowl tonight. I am a murderer of carbs, people.

4. Stop talking about it already. You really want to see some results with your weight loss? When you have a set-back, don't verbalize it. Make a point of talking about how good you feel when you eat healthy, how much sugar screws with your body and how you can't stand the way it makes you feel. Don't talk about the water weight. Don't talk about the scale. Talk about the number you want to be and act like there's no such thing as a setback. This is a mind game. In it to win it or not, it's all about the things you say to yourself and everyone else. Like my old tap teacher used to say, "Fake it to make it."

That's it, I won't keep you here forever. If you ignore everything else I said, do this one little thing for me. The next time you walk by a mirror, stop an give yourself a big old smile, say out lout, "Man, I'm hot today!" and walk away.

Rinse and repeat.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Doctors Make Me Cry

You know what's worse than having a "dressing room moment"? Having a doctor's office moment. Those are the worst. I had one today. He called me fat. Well... first he broke it to me by whispering "overweight". Guess what? I'm supposed to eat less & move more. Shocking, isn't it? I tried to convince him that I already knew that. I said, "I do that." and "I do that too."

Well, more specifically... he said, "You need to put the fork down. Just push yourself away from the table."

I said, "I barely use forks. I practically live on lite yogurt & slim-fast."

He looked sorta doubtful & said, "You need to exercise at least half an hour a day. Take walks."

I replied, "I've been walking several miles a day 4 or 5 days a week and using my elliptical while I watch TV."

He looked even more doubtful and said, "You need to put the salt shaker away and avoid sugars."

I pretty much just nodded because I was beginning to see that my self defense was futile. Have I told you that it was just recently that I even bought a stinking salt & pepper shaker so we could have it when we had guests over? I just don't use salt shakers AND I buy low sodium soup & stuff.

So, why? you ask, is my blood pressure so high? Like stroke territory high? I dunno! I went into the doctor for what I thought was an ear infection and left with an assortment of prescriptions, another appointment for more lab work tomorrow, and another appointment in two weeks to see if my new medication is working yet. This is going to be expensive. Oh yeah, and I don't even have insurance.

So, the moral of the story is this...

A. Don't get fat in the first place because it's not good for your health.

B. When you do get fat, have insurance in place because it's really expensive to treat all those health issues brought on by your fatness.

C. Go to a doctor that lies and tells you that you're beautiful and in great health if you can't handle the truth.

D. If you have a family history of heart problems, don't get fat or your doctor might have to tell you that your heart is too weak to carry your fat@$$ around. (His words, not mine.)

I mean, I know he means well and I'm honestly really glad that he's helping me get some medical stuff taken care of. I want to be healthy. I really do. It just kind of hurts your feelings when your doctor has to tell you that you're basically morbidly obese and won't live long at the rate you're going so you better work up more of a sweat and fast. It just sounds like something that happens to "other people". I know it sounds bad, but I REALLY hope that my lab work proves that there's a reason behind my expanding behind so I can say, "See? I told you I was trying. I mean, I started a flipping blog about it. Doesn't blogging burn calories?!"

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Adam vs. Eve

   Boy, it was a toss up for what to write about today. I was sorely tempted to document my love-hate relationship with diet pills and how crazy they make me. It's been said that writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia. That certainly holds true for writing while on diet pills. Woo-hee... I'd just like to say that while my heart may explode and I would love to be able to stop tapping my foot, my house has never been cleaner. That said, what I think I'm actually going to enlighten you on is something else that makes me equally crazy: the fact that my husband makes losing weight look so easy. Like sitting watching your favorite show easy. You see, here I am completely overhauling my life & sadly accepting the fact that there has to be at least some form of deprivation in order to lose the blubber. No pain no gain (or in this case loss) right?

     This means that while I feed my family bagels with cream cheese for breakfast I make myself a killer slim-fast shake in the blender by pouring in tons of ice (excellent calorie free filler after all), 8 oz. light vanilla soy milk (because it has less calories than it's dairy counterpart), and a scoop of slim-fast (flavor varies since variety is the spice of life). I can totally handle skipping bagels. My shakes are actually not bad  & are even more filling when I remember to add extra fiber by throwing in some flax seeds or some frozen berries. Of course, snacking is key to keeping your metabolism going strong and preventing binges, so I usually have a mid morning snack of Weight Watchers yogurt or a 100 calorie bag of smart pop popcorn while checking up on all my blogging friends. I also keep the fluids flowing with mason jars full of herbal tea or lemon water all day. Sometime between my mid morning snack and the kids coming home from school I nosh on a Lean Cuisine (but only the NON- pasta ones like roasted garlic chicken w/ spinach or salmon w/ broccoli stir-fry). I typically try to make the kids a yummy after school snack & it can be difficult to not dip my finger into the cookie dough, but I've found that I'm willing to sip some diet hot cocoa instead. I like the Swiss Miss sensible sweets line a lot. You have to be careful though since the calorie counts vary widely. I usually grab the stuff that comes in at 25 calories a cup & is fortified with calcium, but I've accidentally grabbed the 60 calorie stuff before too. Not cool. That 35 calories matters.

    See, here's the part that the Adam vs. Eve thing gets frustrating. My DH isn't the type of guy who thinks 35 calories matters. In fact, he doesn't think about the calorie thing AT ALL. That doesn't stop him from dropping weight like a prisoner in a concentration camp though. I know that love isn't supposed to be selfish or jealous and that I should be happy for him. Blah, blah, blah... You know what I'm thinking when he says, "Hey Honey, can you hand me my belt? These pants are so loose they won't even stay up without a belt now" is that I want to throw myself on to the floor & throw a royal tantrum because it's NO FAIR!  I told you what I eat. You know what he eats? He goes through the drive-thru at McDonald's for a nice artery clogging breakfast. He stops at the gas station & picks up pizza or egg rolls or BBQ beef burritos and a bag of chips. For dinner, while I'm "diluting" my dinner by adding extra veggies & carefully arranging my plate so that 3/4 of it has some sort of green leafy something or other, he is skipping the veggies all together & filling his entire plate with the main course & lots of bread. He doesn't drink water. The one thing that he has done to lose weight is switch from Mountain Dew to fruit punch Gatorade. That was only because he knows too many people who have had kidney stones from drinking too much pop. By my math, Gatorade still has WAY too many calories for me though.

So, what gives?  I completely get the Slim-Quick commercials. Have you seen them? Designed to target the 6 ways women need help losing weight? Which is why I'm all hopped up on diet pills (could have been crack if I didn't know better.) So, if you see me on the street and I appear to be schizophrenic and you wonder why I'm talking so fast... that's it. I thought my body was so immune to the effects of caffeine that I could handle it, but alas the combo of caffeine, hoodia, ginseng, and ginkgo have proven too much for me. Not enough to make me stop taking them before I give it long enough to see if it works (please, please, please let it work.) Oh well, at least there's that my house has never been cleaner side effect. ;-)

Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Bumpy Wagon-Ride of my Weightloss Goals

I fell off the skinny-pants wagon. I know, I know, it's only been like a week - WHAT AM I DOING!!! Silly question. I can tell you exactly what I've been doing. E.A.T.I.N.G. I believe I am a victim of overconfidence, and I have totally been neglecting my positive self-talk about what a babe I am, and how my body really does want to weigh 136 lbs. (I've decided that would be my perfect number. The new target weight zone is 136-140, but I think that's as far as I want to go, so please don't worry that I'll get so caught up in losing weight that I'll have to be rescued when I dip below 95 lbs. This could not happen. I love food way too much).

My other problem is that I'm currently in a popcorn slump. My go-to lunch (with something healthy added to it - I'm not on a popcorn starvation diet) just isn't doing anything for me all of the sudden. This is not the first time this has happened, but it always poses the same issues.

Popcorn is something I love (usually), and actually crave. Being able to eat something I consider a big treat everyday for lunch (and bedtime snack half the time) totally saves my diet. I never feel like I'm depriving myself, and look forward to my healthy little, calorie/fat saving lunch. Take away that option (because it doesn't do anything for me if I don't enjoy it - I've never been able to eat things I didn't like just because I should) and I spend all day long chasing my fix.

I ate leftover pasta (like A LOT of left over pasta) for lunch two days in a row. One of those days I think I also ate some for breakfast.

I've eaten out twice.

There's been cookies, cheesecake, and a girls' night that I really can't even go into.

It's time to get things back under control here, because I made that little vow about holding steady and exercising self-control, and I've been totally blowing it.

Like a 5-lb-weight-gain-by-next-week-if-I-don't-get-a-grip kind of blowing it.

And while I'm on the subject, I view self-control regarding food as a gospel principle. I mean overcoming the natural man actually means overcoming our physical appetites, right? Isn't food the biggest, most constant appetite of them all? Shouldn't I be able to control my need for bad-but-oh-so-good food to some extent??? How often do you see an obese general authority? I don't know, I can't back this up with scripture, and you can call me a radical, but to me it just makes sense.

So as of this moment, I am getting a firm grip. No sweets this week (believe me, I had my share these past few days), and a substitute for my popcorn must be found. Sometimes tomato sandwiches do the trick, we'll see if they tempt me tomorrow. Maybe if I throw on cucumbers and a teensy bit of cheese? It really doesn't matter what it is as long as it soothes the savage beast that is my appetite demanding food I actually like, and is healthy at the same time.

I'm feeling more in control already. I love a plan. I'm all over it, and the 136 is my lucky number once more!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Sweet Victory!

I am proud to announce that today was a good day. The siege is officially back on, and I can feel those little breath-holding fat cells withering away with the effort even as we speak. I also have to say that knowing I was committed to writing this post really helped the war effort. My day went something like this:

Breakfast - a meal I usually don't want, but force myself to eat because "they" say you should. On this particular day, things were so hectic as I tried to get my little kids settled so I could do school drop-off and go to work, I almost forgot breakfast entirely. Then, at the last possible second I remembered that all important meal and grabbed a Weight Watchers 1 point yogurt out of the fridge, courtesy of Wal-mart yesterday. It wasn't bad. It also wasn't very filling.

Lunch - thanks to the accountability brought on by this post, I cast away all evil thoughts of pizza, and confined myself to a SMALL chicken salad, (did I mention that is was really, really small?) and a bag of light popcorn.

Snack - my babysitter made cookies, and I had three. The only three that were left. You may think I should have abstained, (or not eaten all three), but when you consider that I didn't bake a whole other batch so I could eat my usual baker's dozen, you are bound to be proud of me. Again, thank you accountability.

Dinner - a couple of baked burritos and a few bites of corn. And then another burrito left on someones plate. I love baked burritos. I could probably eat a baker's dozen of these too, so this also was a victory.

And now it is time for bed, and I will not be eating anything else today. It feels so good to be back on track (yes, this is a pretty typical food day for me), and by the end of the week I should be feeling good enough for some kind of sweet reward.

But not an entire bag of oreos eaten in under two hours. The desired weight zone has to be COMPLETELY official before I take those kind of risks. And do I really do that?

You betcha. What would life be without the occasional oreo binge? I know mine would be an empty, lonely, sorry place. So. Three weeks from now, the siege should be over, the zone official, and the oreos on the menu.

Wish me luck!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

And The Siege Is On!

My digestive system is rebelling. Why, you ask? For the worst possible reason if you're a person who's attempting to lose/hold in the battle of the bathroom scale. Really, this is very irritating, and I have no one to blame but myself. (And my mother. As events play out here, you'll all agree that she TOTALLY gets at least half the blame here).

So what is this "worst possible reason"? Let me explain.

I have four children. Although I love my children, and am very thankful for my ability to bear them, seven years of child-bearing is like a prego-weight roller coaster. "I have to get skinny fast so I can get pregnant again" seems to be the running theme. Always (at least for me) there was this utopia of eternal thinness just waiting at the end of the pregnant/nursing/losing/pregnant body cycle.

"Oh yes, body" I told myself, "as soon as that last child is born, you will be mine. I will lose all your fat, tone those forgotten muscles, and finally achieve that wonderland of 'ideal weight'. It will be so EASY," I continued in my delusional mind. "There will be absolutely nothing standing between us and all those skinny clothes we're waiting to wear."

Nothing but myself, anyway.

And my mother.

If you've been keeping up with me from my other blog, you'll know that I recently lost a little weight courtesy of my good friend Anxiety. This was very exciting, because for the first time since the birth of my last child (over two years ago) I finally hit that magic number on the scale. The number that technically proclaims me to be in my skinny-enough-to-wear-everything-in-my-closet zone. I say "technically" because it always takes my body a few weeks to accept the fact that something is missing. It's like those empty fat cells just hold their breath to keep themselves inflated and reserve room for the fat they hope will come squishing its way back in.

Lovely visual, don't you think?

But I swear that's what happens. Then, if I can manage to hold the fat-cell-siege long enough, they finally give up and go away - and the affects of my weight loss finally manage to show up. And that's when the new weight zone becomes official.

In other words - I JUST LOST THOSE BLASTED FOUR POUNDS LAST WEEK, THE SIEGE IS ON, AND I JUST MADE A MAJOR TACTICAL ERROR IN THE WAR ON FAT!!!! If this were an election, I'd have some serious explaining to do.

I suppose you're getting curious about my blunders - and how I'll manage to pin the responsibility on my mother. Well, here we go.

It started with the Ward Harvest Party. Surprisingly, I managed to get out of there without totally binging (which was completely uncharacteristic of me), but I did have several desserts, got saddled with some of the candy, and my mom sent half a cake home with me. (Her first offense).

Then on Saturday night I ran into Natalie (yes, the very same one who hosts this blog) at the grocery store twenty minutes before it closed, and she tempted me right into the ice cream aisle where Ben and Jerry's was on sale.

As we contemplated the virtues of their vast assortment of gourmet ice-cream, I realized it has been over a decade since I last tasted Ben and Jerry's. Is that not some kind of sacrilege? I fully intended to buy some then and there, smuggle it into the house and gorge myself on the whole thing - till I realized Dreyer's looked almost as good, and had only half the calories. Years of mental training is hard to overcome, and I was forced to choose the lesser of the two evils.

Conference Sunday. My mother's house. Scene of my mother's second offense, and the big breakdown.

"Eat breakfast before you come," she said, "because I thought we'd have waffles and swedish pancakes (i.e. really good crepe-like things with lots of butter, sugar, and other bad stuff smothered all over them) between sessions."

The warning signals were going off in my just-lost-those-critical-four-pounds brain, and I had momentary panic wondering if I could make it. "I'll just have a few bites of each," I confidently lied to myself. "It won't be any big deal. I'm strong."

Five swedish pancakes and three waffles later (that is ALL I'm willing to publicly claim), I began to feel sick. Then I went back in the kitchen just to make sure there was nothing left. I can be really pathetic when it comes to food.

Do you see the cycle here? Friday night: blow it, but determine to do better Saturday. Saturday: blow it, then buy evil ice-cream, and vow to repent on Sunday. Sunday - the waffle/swedish pancake blunder. Too sick Sunday night to make any vows or promises of any kind, and instead decide to deny Sunday ever even happened because it was so unbelievably pathetic.

In my defense, I think I did fairly well yesterday (Monday). At least I can't remember yesterday, so I either held steady, or blocked it out due to more personal failure.

And today?

I can't talk about it.

But I will say that it ended at my mother's house, and it involved some really good pork chops, and really rich, really creamy, REALLY bad-for-the-waistline chocolate mousse. This was her third offense! Can you see how my mother's responsible here? Can you see what she's doing to me??? Surely I can't be expected to stand firm against chocolate mousse???

And so, once again as the evening expires, and I'm facing the gastric consequences of multiple food-choices-not-conducive-to-winning-the-war-against-the-breath-holding-fat-cells, I am making a vow. Tomorrow is a new day. I will not fail. The fat cells will not win. Too many supplies have already broken through the lines. It's good-for-you-food, or nothing, and I refuse to give up any ground to my bathroom scale!

And I promise a victorious post before bedtime tomorrow night.

Until then - sleep well, eat well, and STARVE OUT THOSE STUPID LITTLE FAT CELLS!!!