Sunday, June 28, 2009

Cheat days are bad!

I was doing so well. Then we left for a weekend trip to Yosemite and I decided I would order what I wanted and just not overeat. It doesn't matter, restaurant food, no matter how little I eat, bloats me and makes me feel so bad! A cheat meal is not worth the moments of enjoyment, and now I have ground to retake, three pounds. My hands are swollen, and I just feel yucky!

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Well, yesterday was an interesting day with regards to my food choices. I had decided to do a little meal replacement with a whey isolate beverage up until late afternoon, but still have regular food later in the day when I seemed to desire to eat the most. I wasn't 100% on that plan, since I did eat food throughout the day, but I did manage to include some of the beverage in the morning instead of food. And that really helped!

Lately I've been between 2100 to 2500 calories a day. But including the beverage and eliminating some food at breakfast, I was able to keep calories under 2000. Normally, because of my food choices, my fat intake averaged around 100 gm. But yesterday I only ate 69 gm of fat. I've tried to reduce it to 65 gm or less. Today I'm sure I'll do better.

Where I usually succeed on a daily basis is with carbohydrate intake. I'm almost always under 200 gm. For someone my age, height and frame, I'm led to believe I should take in between 270 and 300 gm of carbs. I choose to keep it under 200 due to managing insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes. I've been succeeding at that.

Protein is another area where I tend to overeat. It is recommended that I eat between 75 and 100 gm of protein daily, but I'm usually over 100 gm. And my protein sources usually come with added fats, which is where the problem really exists. Yesterday my protein was at 154, still on the high side, but because the whey isolate beverage had no fat and very, very low carb, it really helped me manage the extra fats.

Yesterday, for breakfast, I had a cup of miso soup with tofu, on serving of whey isolate beverage, a hard boiled egg and then I caved into cravings and had a couple slices of low-sodium turkey breast deli meat. I drank plenty of liquids as well. This kept me going until lunch, where I had whole wheat angel hair pasta with ground turkey marinara and spinach salad. I snacked on a hard boiled egg in the afternoon. A little later, around dinner time, I started to lose my resolve, but I did manage to first have more spinach, grilled zucchini, a potato (mashed, with a little olive oil and garlic) and some boiled greens before I resorted to a mini whole-wheat bagel with lots of cream cheese and some tortilla chips. And I ended with sugar-free Jello. I felt satisfied, not stuffed, and I quit eating well before 8 p.m.

This morning I was back down to 314 lb. Yeah!

Today, I hope to reproduce my success. I'm not hungry yet this morning, so I don't really feel like eating anything right now. Once I do get hungry, I'll have the whey beverage again, as well as the miso soup and an egg. My boys want chili for dinner tonight, so I need to plan ahead and just go for a double serving of the whey beverage for lunch. Most of the afternoon will be spent at the spa today, getting a well deserved massage. I'll be so relaxed I'll effortlessly breeze past the KFC on my way home! And since I anticipate feeling hungry before dinner, I can have veggie snacks ready (cucumbers and baby carrots) for while I'm cooking.

I'll let you know how it goes...

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

What the h...‽

So I just weighed in after my strange binge last night (I haven't done something like that in years) and oddly enough, I didn't gain an ounce!

This is the time when I kick myself...if I hadn't overeaten last night, I would have shown a loss this morning. The late afternoons and evenings are when I am most likely to overeat and make poor food choices. I really wonder why that is.

So, no more analysis. It's time to move on from here. I'm actually going to do a little pennance today. I was thinking back to my Optifast days last night, when I was full of regret, and decided to go with several servings of a protein isolate drink during the day, and a balanced dinner at night. I'm going to see how long I can do that.

I'm really desperate to lose some serious pounds this summer.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Sometimes, KFC is the lesser of two evils

It would have been better if I had just driven myself to KFC to get what I really wanted, a two-piece meal. Then the eating would be done! Instead, I decided to make a salad. And I also had two small baked potatoes with butter. And then a single whole wheat tortilla with pepper jack cheese. And then I just wanted more melted cheese. Oh, and I forgot the whole wheat mini bagel with cream cheese. And a tin of sardines (water packed) with 2 slices of Wasa light rye.

That's 1375 calories in two hours! If I'd gone with the KFC option, I'd have eaten 300 calories less, and I'd be done with eating. So now, I just feel satiated and guilty.

I really wanted the KFC. I was mad, stressed, avoiding work, lonely. I wanted to eat, watch TV and check out. There's no diet that addresses that situation. And that's the situation I need to remedy.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

This is not a drill!

I'm in training now, like one of those emergency preparedness training exercises. I need to train my brain not to want KFC, or pizza, or burgers when I'm stressed. I've been better and better about not going to food in general, but these are tough times for me, and I'm feeling my resolve slipping away at times.

I wish that, instead of wanting fatty, salty, crunchy/chewing foods when I'm stressed (or any food, for that matter), well, I wish I'd choose to exercise instead. In order to succeed with that, I have to be completely aware of myself, when I feel the stress, when I feel the cravings to check out with food coming on, and I need to be able to short circuit the cravings and instead choose some form of exercise that I can take on, anywhere, to work through the stress.

I know that for me, weight training pumps endorphins into me within 15 minutes of starting a work out. And I like how I experience an increase in inner strength when I do it. So I resolve to mindfully choose to do weight training in stressful moments, and when I feel the call of the Colonel too.

Like right now...a box of eight piece extra crispy with biscuits just sounds so good. Because yesterday was a hard day (told the kids about the divorce) and my mother is behaving like a pirana feeding on my stress over my marital situation, and I have to write a paper about Homer vs. Herodotus and the Trojan War for my Myth and Literature course and I really would rather just go shopping for art work for my new perhaps I should go lift weights for 20 minutes? (Like now! I can actually smell biscuits in my nose!)

Friday, June 19, 2009

I'm in the mood for Cake

I don't know why, but this song just keeps running through my head today. It's totally not food related, except for the band's name...Cake! You can hear it here on YouTube. Now I want to tango!

Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps
You won't admit you love me.
And so how am I ever to know?
You only tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.
A million times I ask you,
And then I ask you over again.
You only answer
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.
If you can't make your mind up,
We'll never get started.
And I don't wanna wind up
Being parted, broken-hearted.
So if you really love me...say yes.
But if you don't, dear, confess.
And please don't tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.
If you can't make your mind up,
Well never get started.
And I don't wanna wind up
Being parted, broken-hearted.
So if you really love me...say yes.
But if you don't, dear, confess.
And please don't tell me
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps,
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps,
Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Either I need to be cloned or I should get a personal assistant

I do not feel like exercising these days. I have too, too much to do. I write out an exercise schedule, and then I promptly ignor it. I don't understand why. I do like to exercise, especially the weight training and bouncing on my Fitball. But for the last few weeks, those things are nothing more than decorator items in the living room.

If I would just add one thing, one activity to the daily routine, that I can easily slip would have to be the Fitball bouncing. I can do that everyday while I'm watching TV.

(What? She's still watching TV and yet claims to be "too, too" busy?) Yes, I still watch TV, because everyday, I need a mindless activity. You might think exercise would be a mindless activity, but for someone with ADD, it's not! I still grind through a lot of stuff with my brain, even, especially, when I'm exercising. I don't know why. TV helps me shut it off for awhile.

I'm succeeding at keeping the calories below 2000 everyday. Stuck at 315lb. this morning. I tried not eating until noon, but then made up for the calories since then. I guess my body really wants the 2000 calories. I was still hungry at 9 p.m., so I had a soup of chicken broth with turkey meatballs and zucchini.

I'm getting to sleep okay now. Three nights in a row of eight hours of sleep. Must keep this up!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Where does it all go?

I just found this article on what happens to fat when we lose weight. It used to be that when I felt a little hungry, I would picture Ms. Pacman making her way through my ass-fat just to hold off and burn a few more calories, but now I can instead visualize what is happening in my body on a biochemical basis...

No, Ms. Pacman makes more sense to me.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Okay, well, that's just weird!

It's almost 6 a.m. I couldn't sleep at all last night. I finally went to bed around 4:30 a.m., but I couldn't shut down my brain and then, about 15 minutes ago, I woke up famished! So I decided to weigh-in, being Monday morning, before coming downstairs for breakfast.

314 lbs. That's after 1600 calories and no exercise yesterday. I'm down another three pounds since the day before?

So perhaps for now, clueing in to being stressed and not feeding the stress is helping me lose weight.

I just ate six turkey meatballs for breakfast, at 360 calories. I'm still hungry. I may scramble a couple of eggs and make some toast, and then go back to bed. I'm feeling quite punchy and I don't want to get sick.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Surprising post-party weight loss

I had a very busy day yesterday, having family over for a late luncheon. I thought I didn't eat much, having only had a single meals all day, and then some light snacking in the evening. But this morning I decided to record everything that I ate. It's amazing how a single meal and light snacking can add up to just under 2000 calories!

Still, when I weighed in this morning, I was down to 317. So that was a delightful surprise.

To be fair, I spent nearly the entire day on my feet with cleaning and cooking and managing the meal service. I finally got to sit during the meal, and then after everyone left. After lunch, I got some exercise in sitting on my Fitball and bouncing...about an hour, until my mother gave me the stink-eye!

Today, it's post-party clean-up. There were some leftovers, so I'll have some grilled game hen at lunch. I was a little hungry when I got up this morning, and the spanokopita that was left was calling my name...I had three pieces! Fortunately, the fat content on that is low, and I made the filling with artichoke hearts, fennel, leek and spinach (plus egg and feta, and the phyllo pastry). That should hold me for awhile. Later, I plan to eat watermelon.

Tonight we're going to see Star Trek. I don't want to eat at the theater. It always gets me into trouble. I love movie hot dogs with mustard!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Morning musings

I weighed myself this morning, down one whole pound to 319. Then I went to the bathroom about 30 minutes later, and so I weighed myself again...back up to 320! WTF!?

What the scale tells me is pretty meaningless. I know how I ate yesterday, under 2000 calories, not enough water, too much sodium. When I track what I ate, it's helpful. I can stop myself from going over my caloric limit for the day, and I can pace myself more effectively throughout the day.

I don't know if I should eat breakfast today. I'm not feeling hungry this morning. I really only want some coffee. I don't want to eat until I feel actual hunger.

My family is coming over for lunch this afternoon. I've planned a healthy menu...grilled citrus-marinated Cornish game hens, roasted garnet yams with crème fraîche, brown rice pilaf, spanakopita (but a lower-fat version), marinated French green beans and a nice salad. Watermelon and cherries for dessert. And a large pitcher of iced pomegranate green tea.

There will be 10 at my house today, and I don't have enough seats in the living room, so I plan to sit on my Fitball and bounce some while we're chatting. It will annoy my mother...simple pleasures in life that I look for each day.

Later we're walking to the park with all the kids to fly kites. It's a really nice day today.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Time to make lemonade...

Life has handed me a lot of lemons over the last few months. My dad's cancer has advanced (he has multiple myeloma - it eats your bones from the inside out) and he needs a lot more attention on a regular basis. My mom tries to manage, but she stresses out a lot and seems to be suffering some form of dementia now. I made the decision to move back to my hometown in order to help care for them.

That's when my husband of 25 years decided to explore his mid-life crisis further and has now filed for divorce. It's been his dream to live overseas and be the Old Spice Man (you know, have a girl in every port) and family commitments don't figure into that I get to raise my now teenage sons on my own, as well as help them through the restructuring of our family without alienating them from their father, despite all the feeling I truly wish to express about this man. They're going to need him some day, and I still need the alimony and child support.

So, I have to hurry up and finish college as well, so I can move forward with getting a the US, where no one is hiring, especially not 48-year-old women with no work experience over the last 25 years trying to get into an entry level position. And it's hard to concentrate on studying when I'm so stressed out.

And that's what I'm here to address right now, what extreme stress can do to a body, and what it is I'm doing to manage it.

When all this stuff started to hit the fan, my first reaction was pure panic. Because it all hit within a month's time. I am amazed I haven't caught the swine flu, because I haven't been sleeping much, not eating healthfully all the time, exercise has really dropped off, and I've been riding a huge emotional roller coaster for weeks. I started to experience panic attacks, mostly at night. My heart would race, I'd hyperventilate...I only had two people I could talk to about everything, but neither were available in the middle of the night (and one costs me $150/hour!)

I knew I had to find a way to calm myself and manage the stress. I had to stop being so reactive. I had to get my head together for my benefit as well as to be there for my family. The therapist helped me a lot. Journaling helps. And for some strange reason, bouncing on my Fitball helps. At first, I watched a lot of TV, because if I didn't, I'd obsess on my situation. So I sat on the Fitball and bounced. I can't eat and bounce at the same time. I burn about 500 calories/hour while bouncing. And my quadriceps are really strong now! Plus, and this is probably why I didn't get sick, bouncing helps drain the lymphatic system and stimulates the thymus gland that produces T-cells that keep your immune system up.

Some might say watching TV is a waste of time, but when you're feeling pretty demoralized and isolated, it can get you through a lot. I have to thank Craig Ferguson the most for getting me through the toughest parts. Laughter also stimulates the thymus, so Craig was just good medicine for me! Flight of the Conchords also get credit for keeping me sane and well. (I had the pleasure of seeing them in concert in L.A. recently...I love them!)

I had to move to a new home, and while most of my furniture hasn't made it yet, I packed up and moved everything else by myself. And that felt good. I had some help loading a 12' UHaul trailer, but I did all the packing and unpacking myself, which took about three days total. Hard work, but rewarding to have my own place again, with no ghosts from the past to haunt me here. My sons moved in with me this week, and I'm confident we're going to be just fine.

And I'm even back in class. Almost done with one course, and two other teachers have granted me an extension to get the other coursework done. When I'm concentrating on my work, which I love, I seem to be completely oblivious to the stress!

Now the tough and exercise. When I moved into my new house, I didn't bring in any food that doesn't support my weight loss/wellness efforts into the house. I'm still keeping up with that. There are always lots of fresh vegetables and lean meats, healthy fats, whole grains, and as little processed food as possible. But that doesn't mean I don't overeat. Overeating even healthy foods adds up to weight gain. I've gained back some weight, which is frustrating. As of this morning, I'm back up to 320 lbs. from 308 lbs. I'm also guilty of going back to the drive-thru habit. With all the travel between my vacation home and the new home, I spent a lot of time on the roads, not planning ahead with the meals. I may have even chosen the least fatty items on the menu at times, but they're still really full of sodium and almost no fiber.

Drive-thru is an old stress-management technique I used for many years. Even now, when I've spent the day with my parents, who even without their medical conditions are difficult people, compel me to pound a couple of cheeseburgers at McDonald's on the way home. I have to find a new route!

In two weeks, when my furniture and fitness equipment get here, I'll be set to get back on track with the exercise. In the meantime, I have my Fitball, an elliptical cross trainer, plus my smaller hand weights. And all my fitness DVDs. Just a little bit everyday is all I need to start my body moving again in the right direction.

So there I am now, not feeling great, but feeling hopeful and determined not to give up. I'll try to check in more often as I work through my struggles and try to keep moving forward. I really am determined to break past 300 lbs. In fact, I really have to get down to a maximum of 200 lbs. in the next three years, because after medical insurance from my soon-to-be-ex's company goes away, no medical insurance company will cover me at a reasonable cost to me unless I weigh less than that.

And that just steams me all over again! How do people get through life and end up being sweet old people? Oh, wait, we don't...