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Friday, January 29, 2010

I am the Tortoise, Coo Coo Cachoo?

I've seen the line in a few sigs on weight loss boards:

"If weight loss is a race, I want to be the tortoise."

It's a good motto. Much better than "Nothing tastes as good as thin feels," or, spare me, "A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips!" Those gems sound like thinly (oh, the pun!) veiled eating disorders, to me.

But the tortoise... I can handle being the tortoise.

An update from my post yesterday - I followed through.

I weighed myself this morning (I was up just over 3 pounds... which is WAY better than I expected).

I did not clean anything last night, I got home and just collapsed from exhaustion (Thursday is a 14-hour day for me), but I did get up this morning and take care of a little cleaning. Did some dishes, some general picking up of the living room... hopefully I can manage some laundry and more dishes tonight before I go to bed.

I logged everything I ate yesterday and have logged everything I've eaten today so far.

One day at a time.

Slow and steady wins the race.

And one last truth from Winnie the Pooh, via Pooh's Little Instruction Book:

"Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day."

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Talk is Cheap, Lies are Expensive

The wisdom of Green Day.

I talk a good game, don't I? I mean, look at that last post. Four solid, straightforward points on which I must focus to lose weight, get healthy, and remain so.

A resolution to accomplish those goals 90% of the time.

It's a shame that I excel at lying to myself.

Time for a big, honest slap in the face.

Lie #1: I'll get back on it tomorrow.
Who am I kidding? Tomorrow never comes! I have allowed myself to slip back into the perfection habit. The moment that something classified 'unhealthy' passes my lips, I see the day as wasted and dive head first into vats of fryer oil and cheese with reckless abandon. This must stop.

Lie #2: I can't have gained back much, my clothes still fit fine.
My clothes do still fit, though I have gradually fallen out of the habit of using my belt as much, since I don't need it to hold my pants up anymore. Clearly, I have gained weight back... how much? I don't know, because I haven't stepped on my scale.

Lie #3: I'm still ok, no one has noticed me swelling up like the Goodyear Blimp.
UNTRUE, UNTRUE, UNTRUE. I have noticed the sideways glances. The up-and-down appraisals. Gamblers rubbing their mitts together in anticipation of their winnings in the "bet she regains it all!!!" poll. I have gotten bigger and it IS noticeable. Even I can see it in the roundness of my cheeks in the mirror in the mornings. Instead of being a delicately pointed oval (I like my face shape when it's not swollen with fat and water retention), it's like staring at a fat, yellow-pink moon.

Action Plan:
- CLEAN HOUSE. A messy room is a surefire way for me to fail at other aspects of my life. In order to do this, I need to reserve my weekends and keep them to myself. I love having company, but it inhibits my getting things done that I would otherwise accomplish.

- LOG FOOD. I know that I am on a road to relapse when I stop logging my food on CalorieKing. I haven't logged steadily in weeks.

- WEIGH EVERYDAY. I perpetuate Lie #2 by never stepping on my scale when I am not logging my food intake. Instead of looking at numbers, I depend on the fit of my clothes to tell me how I'm doing. If I can still pull my pants on over my bulbous buttocks, everything is fine. NOT.

- STAY HOME. Going out to party, to eat, to travel, to visit... whatever... it is all an interruption that I do not need when I am floundering and gasping for air like I am right now. I need to stay rooted in my apartment for at least two weekends in a row. Enough time to re-institute habits and get myself under control.

Those are the basics; the keys to my successes in the past.

I can't afford to re-gain weight. The clothes I bought last year when I went home were bought to fit a slimmer, trimmer body. They comprise fully 1/4-1/2 of my wardrobe. A lot of my 'fat clothes' are worn out, stretched out, and just plain out of fashion. Having to re-stock a fatter closet from across the Pacific is inconvenient and unbelievably expensive. I won't do it.

I am logging my food today.

I will do something in the way of cleaning house this evening. Even something small is a step forward. I will weigh myself tomorrow morning (and scream). I will stay home this weekend and not have anyone over.

I will, I WILL, I WILL.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I Resolve...



2. a resolve or determination: to make a firm resolution to do something.

3. the act of resolving or determining upon an action or course of action, method, procedure, etc.

4. the mental state or quality of being resolved or resolute; firmness of purpose.

I didn't make any New Year's resolutions for 2010. Not in so many words, anyway. Certainly not in any public forums, like here.

Maybe I should have?

I've been drifting downward (not on the scale... in my mind, in my habits, etc.). I explained it in another journal as the mental equivalent of a triumvirate of appetite-inducing EVIL all converging on me at the same time (severe PMS, the general mid-winter desire to dig in, fatten up, and hibernate, and watching my town get buried under the biggest snowstorm I have ever experienced in my lifetime - 6+ feet in 2.5 days). Excuses... they are a talent, yes?

I didn't make a resolution this year because I have never been able to follow through with one (if I had, this journal wouldn't exist). See, I usually have that number 2 definition down pat. For the first few weeks, anyway. Number 4... that one comes on hard and strong for the first month or six weeks, too.

Number 3, though... action, course of action, method, procedure... that has been consistently absent from any resolution I have ever made.

So, let's talk action, shall we? Then maybe I can ACT.

  • In order to lose weight at my current age, weight, and activity level, I MUST eat fewer than 2,000 calories/day. Preferably, 1,500-2,000 calories/day.

  • In order to add the joy (and it IS a joy) of being FIT to my steadily slimming frame, I MUST implement an exercise routine. Ideally, it would consist of 30-minutes of cardio (in addition to any walking to/from work that I do) six days/week; a strength training routine three days/week; flexibility training three days/week. This most likely means at least 60-minutes a day, six days/week MUST be devoted to exercise.

  • I MUST drink at least three liters of water/day.

  • I MUST be in bed before 10PM six days/week, no later than midnight on the excepted night.


Four clear, solid points that should not be that hard to follow. But, as every person who has ever tried it knows... THEY ARE.

I am not resolving "to lose weight." I am not resolving "to exercise." I am not resolving "to go on a quest for the holy grail." Nothing quite so ethereal or directionless.

I resolve to aim for the 90/10 principle on the above four points. Aiming for dietary perfection is the equivalent of aiming to fail.

I resolve to accomplish these four healthy lifestyle points 90% of the time, and to forgive myself wholly for the 10% of the time I may not accomplish them.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

It's All About Perception

Imagine I am hanging out with my unemployed, verge of bankruptcy, multiple childrens' mouths to feed friend. She is drinking water out of a paper cup and wearing denim shorts from Wal-Mart and a holey collegiate sweatshirt from Goodwill.

I am wearing obviously new and well-constructed clothes, expensive-smelling perfume, carrying a brand name handbag, and drinking a six-dollar-latte in a sparkly reuseable tumbler.

And then, I proceed to bitch to my friend about how poor I am and how making ends meet this month is going to be tough.

"That's rude," you tell me.

Yes, yes it is.

Now think about how rude it is when people with ten or twenty or even thirty pounds to lose stand next to me and complain about being fat. If they see themselves as fat, then what am I? Dumbo? Jabba the Hutt? Rush Limbaugh (heaven forbid!)? (*This entire thing is null and void if we are both enganged in self-deprecating 'I'm fat' talk or if I have previously acknowledged your fat as my friend. In that case, WE are fat together. And that is fine.)

Don't get me wrong, I absolutely respect that people with fewer than fifty pounds to lose come up against the very same walls and obstacles as I do. I understand that it can be just as difficult to lose ten pounds as it can be to lose ninety. I am more than willing to work with friends on losing weight and being healthy. In fact, I enjoy having someone to work through all of this together and to counsel and to talk things out. It makes it easier.

I do NOT, however, enjoy skinny people (relative to me) calling themselves fat. For the love o' crap, think before you even open your mouth. And then think some more before you decide to talk.

More on perception?

* Sometimes, I pick up an article of clothing and think, "My GOD that's HUGE... that is just going to be hanging off of me." Then, I put it on and it barely fits. Perception lies.

* When I watched the newest Biggest Loser, the 500-pound guy didn't look all that exceptionally huge to me. In fact, I was reminded of a few family members. Now, to my non-American friends, on the other hand... Perception is cultural.

* When I look at a plate full of good, nutritious, savory food, I think, "Surely, I can eat every last bite of that." And I do. When I look at a dessert the size of my head, I think, "If I eat all of that sugar, I will be ill." And I am. A friend can't make it through half a burger or a chicken breast without gagging, but can gulp a gallon of parfait without trouble. Perception is powerful.

I'm looking forward to a year of altering perceptions.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New Year, New Who?

130kg (286.6lbs)

I could say that I wish I had been under 280 when the new year started.

I could say that I had wanted to be 275lbs by Christmas time and then who knows at the new year.

I could say that my inability to do either of those things constitutes a complete and utter failure on my part.

But you know what? They don't. I am starting 2010 at a lower weight than I have EVER faced down a cold January and an even colder February.

I've never started a new year under 290lbs. Not in recent memory. Not since I surpassed 290 in the first place, whenever that was. (See, I'm not like other fat people. I don't remember what I weighed at various times in my life. I have vague ideas of when I was at my heaviest and the moments when I dipped to my lightest after that, but not "I weighed 200 pounds in 5th grade..." kind of stuff.)

I figure that I probably hit 300 somewhere between 8th-10th grade.

So, basically, I have not been under 290lbs in a new year since the early-mid 90s.

That is a long. Damn. Time.

And you know what? That makes this an accomplishment. Of epic proportions.

If I could maintain perfection, absolute perfection, over the next 12-months, I could enter 2011 at my (current/temporary/final?) goal weight of 190.

190 pounds.

That number sounds so low that it must be what I weighed when I was a fetus.

100 pounds lost in a year is a tremendous accomplishment (and one that few outside of The Biggest Loser campus rarely achieve). At this point, I'm going to keep a goal of 50-ish pounds in mind. If I could be in the 230s when 2011 is just around the corner, I think I could be quite pleased with myself.

Middle school weight, here I come! (I think if most people aimed to weigh what they weighed in 7th grade, they'd be dead... me, however, I'll just be dead sexy.)

Happy New Year!