So I vowed yesterday to be very mindful and stick to my plan of tracking, eating consciously and carefully. Here’s how the day went:
Up at 5:30 for a planned walk with a friend at 6. By 6:10, I realize she’s forgotten. I consider bailing, but put on my shoes anyway and take my dog. We get in just over 2 miles before 7am. I tack on yesterday’s Beachbody Challenge moves while I watch the morning news.
Breakfast: One egg, one tbsp mixed shredded cheese, the last of my Farmers’ Market arugula and a dash of hot sauce in a whole wheat wrap. Yum. Feeling virtuous. Nailed it!
Morning: Have offered to volunteer at my church Vacation Bible School. In the kitchen. Where there are DONUTS and COOKIES and BAGELS and CHEETOS. OMG. OMG! After the kids are served, and the volunteers are fed, and everything is cleaned up, there are about eight donuts left. All of the volunteers start sampling. It is everything i can do NOT to eat a donut. But I don’t. I hate myself for not being able to. :(
Lunch: Get home, and stare into the fridge. Decide on using leftover chicken breast sliced up on a bed of spinach with cucumbers and some homemade roasted red peppers. The sauce that I made for the chicken is the dressing. Am full and satisfied, so I hate myself a little less.
Afternoon: Spend the afternoon alternately working in front of my computer, doing laundry and doing summer enrichment with my youngest son. Stomach starts grumbling around 3pm. Force myself to wait until after I do the mommy chauffeur thing before I respond to my stomach.
Snack: No way am I going for my usual mindless bowl of Skinnypop and nuts today. I had wanted to take the kids for froyo but there’s no time. I decide on plain Greek yogurt, berries with chopped nuts and a swirl of agave syrup. Yum.
Dinner: Daughter has practice from 5-8, husband is working late so it is just my son and I. After searching valiantly through the fridge, I decide to make mini pizzas on leftover hamburger buns. They are 220 calories each, so even with all of my sauce, sprinkle of cheese, sauteed spinach with garlic and roasted red peppers I figure mine comes in around 350 calories. Not too shabby. My son is thrilled with his pepperoni.
After dinner: After tracking all of my food, I have 275 calories left. I want my wine. I decide to have two glasses because that’s what is left in the bottle. I slowly sip it and enjoy it much more than the three glasses I tossed down without even thinking about the day before. After I’m done, I brush my teeth so I won’t be tempted to have anything else.
And I didn’t.
I felt pretty awesome at the end of the day. Good, solid food choices, never really felt deprived, it’s all good. I can do this. I got this. I am disciplined. I am focused. I should be down at least a pound after eating so clean and healthy, right?
Not so much. I’m down just .4 over the previous day’s reading. And still up over Wednesday’s. Grrr! After such a great day, I totally thought the water weight that I hoped I was carrying would start flying off and I’d get an immediate payback at the scale. Yeah, no.
So I’m back for the next day, the next choice. I’ve already had breakfast, which was 2 eggs with spinach, red peppers and a sprinkle of cheese. I’m drinking my coffee and after shuffling my daughter to camp I will be off to bootcamp.
One choice at a time. It’s all I can do.
I didn’t write a Wednesday weigh in post yesterday. It’s up. I’m mad. I’m mad because I have no one to blame but myself.
It’s July 17 and I’ve essentially erased all of the gains (losses?) I’ve made this year on the scale.
I know you’ll tell me that it isn’t all about the scale, and I’m still doing better than I ever have before with exercise and fitness. I just completed my first half marathon and am still running consistently three days a week. I feel good about that.
And I know this number on the scale is different than when I saw that number before because of my fitness level. Last time I weighed this amount, in 2007, I hardly exercised at all. Clothes fit now that didn’t fit at this weight before. So I know that it isn’t all about the number.
But the number is still a gauge. And it’s rising rapidly over the last few weeks.
I have to get back in a place of control.
I find my days pretty much going like this these days: I’ll get up in the morning with great intentions. I’ll work out on most of them, and have a healthy breakfast. Maybe a healthy snack around 10 if the breakfast was light. Lunch is usually still pretty good, although lately we have had a lot of leftovers to plow through, and when I have leftovers, sometimes it isn’t always the healthiest lunch. By three or four in the afternoon I’m feeling hungry again, and things are calming down with the kids and schedules so I’m usually in front of the computer or TV. So I reach for my go to: Skinnypop popcorn and nuts. I tell myself this isn’t the worst snack I could have and it is filling. Then it is time for dinner. I’m not really hungry because of the snack but I eat anyway because I’ve made dinner for the family. I have a glass of wine most days with that dinner.
And then the kids settle in to TV/reading/God knows what the teenager does in her room and it’s me and sometimes my husband in front of the TV. Another glass of wine. Then the munchies hit. Sometimes it’s something sweet. And the more of each I have the more I want.
Before you know it, I’m regretting the last 500 calories and have blown the day that started off so well.
This happens at least three days a week.
It’s because, I think, by the end of the day, I am on autopilot. I’m not even thinking anymore. Or I am thinking about what I’m doing and just not caring. I want what I want more than I want these last ten (fifteen, actually, as of this morning) pounds gone. The moment is fleeting but the decision is made.
I have to be more aware. More conscious. Think about EVERYTHING that goes in my mouth because it all adds up. It all matters. Every single choice, all the little ones, are what adds up. I can’t keep canceling out the good ones with bad ones. There have to be more good ones if I’m going to go lower on the scale.
Choices. It’s all about the choices. Every. Single. One.
Have a little time to myself today, which is something I haven’t really had in quite a while. I literally have zero tasks looming that need to get done that I am procrastinating on. Well that may not be entirely true but I don’t have any big ones. Which feels awesome. It seems like every summer I get wrapped up in some sort of work that is timed poorly and my focus isn’t where it needs to be, which is my kids. And myself.
There are a few things rattling around in my brain today and I thought I’d get them out since I actually have the time.
1. Getting up early to exercise….worth it. Works better with a friend.
The last few weeks I have found it terribly hard to motivate myself to get up early and exercise. I literally talked myself out of a planned run last Wednesday at 6am. I just didn’t “feel like it”. Today, a girlfriend and I made a date to go for a run (which turned into a walk because of the heat, but that’s not the point) at 6am. The accountability of having a partner made us both do it. And you know what? It felt so freaking awesome to be in my shower at 7:30 knowing I’d gotten in some great activity. Plus my friend and I had a chance to catch up since we haven’t seen each other much since the kids have been out of school.
2. Tracking. Blech, but necessary.
I got out of the habit of tracking since my kids got out of school, and boy is it showing on the scale. You forget how just a few little things can add up to a few hundred calories a day. I’m still not being super perfect about it, but something is better than nothing, which is what I was doing before. I find myself constantly eating the same foods, and shoveling it in, not being mindful of portion or nutrients or balance. I really need to force myself to be aware of what I am eating and drinking. I’ve let myself really go on autopilot here.
3. Races/running. Time to get back on the horse.
It’s been so hot and sticky here that I haven’t really run much since my half marathon. Finally, this weekend, I planned a five mile run at 7am. It was still a little cool then, but already humid. It wasn’t easy by any stretch, and I’d planned a challenging route to boot. But I kept telling myself to stick it out, don’t cut it short, and I didn’t. I felt fantastic afterwards. It really is true, you’ll never regret a run, but you’ll always regret NOT doing one. I finally just signed up for my next race, an evening run in 11 days. I’m excited to do another race again. Unfortunately I am sure I’ve already lost some of my fitness level in the weeks since my half, but I plan on getting in a few solid runs between now and then to hopefully get ready.
4. Speaking of running and races….
I volunteered at a kids’ triathlon this weekend (I actually served on the committee that organized it) and it was so amazing to watch these kids conquer this athletic feat. The three women I was working with most of the day, by the end, were all committing to training and taking part in an entry level triathlon next year. I’m excited about taking on a new challenge. I am quite sure I’m not cut out for a full marathon, so this feels like a great new challenge for me. By this time next year, or shortly thereafter, I hope to be a triathlete.
I am putting all this down in hopes of getting my head back on track and stopping what definitely feels like a summer slide back into higher weights and bad habits. I’ve worked so hard to get to this point, I definitely don’t want to go backwards.
Anyone else out there battling the summer slide? How are you fighting back against it?
I didn’t bother writing last Wednesday. I was up, obviously. No one likes to talk about it. So I recorded the weight in MyFitnessPal and just moved on. I mean, it’s boring reading the same “up, down, up, down” week after week here right?
I’m up again this week. I wasn’t going to post about it, but what the hell. I keep this blog for a reason, and it’s not to attract multitudes of people to sympathize, to relate, to love my posts. It’s to work through my own issues, celebrate my accomplishments, and work through my setbacks so I can still move forward. Mostly.
So with that in mind, I’ll quote Kristen from Real Housewives of New York City:
“Just freaking own it!”
Yeah, I’m feeling the summer slide. Kids are home, it’s hot, it’s harder to get workouts in. While there is lots of fresh produce in my house, there are also holiday parties, tired glasses of wine at night after a flood in the basement, rationalizations about how hard it is to get up for a run at 6am because 8am is no longer an option with the kids’ schedules. It has happened to me for the last two summers. It is just harder to keep up with my exercise in the summer.
But still, that’s no excuse. Back in the glorious Summer of 2007 I lost weight consistently all summer, and it wasn’t because I was working out every day. I was making better food choices. I wasn’t guzzling down two glasses of wine every night. It’s the same, same, same mantra I post here every time my scale is up.
But telling myself never gets old. I never lose the great feeling I have when I have a day when all of the choices just click. I actually had two of those days this week so far, Monday and Tuesday (which honestly means the .4 I am up this week probably could have been a lot worse). I need to start each day fresh, keep telling myself to take this whole journey one day, one choice at a time.
I’m owning the choices. I think sometimes I talk myself into thinking that this one extra bite of bread won’t matter, or that one more glass of wine isn’t going to make a difference. But if I do that three times in one day, boom: three hundred calories. Do that five days a week? That’s half a pound that I won’t lose, or that I will gain.
Each day, each choice. It’s all up to me.
Just freaking own it!
Current Week: +0.4 lbs
Total Weight Left To Lose: 13.2 lbs
June is gone, it was the fastest month ever with everything I had to do. Thank goodness summer is here and things have calmed down somewhat. I was truly starting to feel a little insane!
1. Run at least one race a month.
I ran one race this month, my Half Marathon. But this still puts me ahead on this because I have several months with two races each.
2. Run at least 2 10Ks this year.
This was done in April and May. I am starting to think of running another now that the distance seems so manageable. Maybe I should up this to three or four? They’re hard to find though. We’ll see.
3. Run a half marathon.
Done, nine days ago! I am still very happy I did it and already thinking of another one, because most any other one would be easier. This one had hills, it was in the heat (although I know it wasn’t as hot as it could have been). I don’t know if I will do one this fall because that means starting training again very soon and frankly I am looking for a few weeks of running because I want to, not because I have to.
4. Finally reach my goal weight.
Totally stagnant here. I am maintaining just fine but not losing. I am starting to wonder if where I am is the happy place? I feel good, healthy, and I fit in most of my “skinny” clothes from when I was nearly ten pounds lighter. I know this is because of all of the exercise I do now that I didn’t do then. I’m smaller, even though I weigh more.
Still would love to be down at least another five. And it is doable, I just need to be serious about it. Sigh.
5. Am going to get back into the 30 day challenges now that the half is over. This month I am doing the Beachbody Challenge. It seemed appropriate. I’ll update on how that goes in my weekly posts.
Overall I have pretty much hit most of my goals for 2014, and it’s only July 1. I’m kind of amazed by it. I need to add some new things in the mix to keep it interesting. But I feel really good, in better shape than probably I have been in my whole life. So even though I’d like to lose more weight, I feel pretty good about where I am right now.
Everyone has been asking me “how do you feel?” in the four days since the half. And I have to say, I feel much better than I thought I would. I have to chalk it up to a lengthy training plan which I feel really prepared me for the race (if you’re wondering, it was the free Beginner Half Marathon to Finish in the RunKeeper app).
The worst thing by far for me has been my feet. I’ve got blisters on several toes and they are still kind of sore. I have very wide feet, and it took me forever to even find shoes that were comfortable to run in. And I still think I have not found the best sweat wicking socks to prevent the blisters on long runs. I’ve not had this problem really much before, only once I hit the 8+ mile mark.
That being said, I have had almost no soreness whatsoever in my legs, which has surprised me. I did walk around a fair bit after the race, and stretched before I left the site. I took a slow two mile walk the next day. I did nothing the second day after, but I went to bootcamp yesterday. Thankfully, we did strength work, which worked many other muscle groups.
Today I did my first run since the half. I had planned on three easy miles outside, but I overslept and woke up to very humid 70+ degrees. Blech. I opted for the treadmill instead. And it felt really good. I kept it slow and easy, but felt strong the whole time. The blister on my big toe started talking to me in the last mile, but otherwise, felt pretty much normal and recovered.
I have been being careful to drink more water than usual, and I think that has helped part of my recovery too.
Everyone keeps asking me, “Will you do a full marathon now?” I have to say, at this point, the answer is a firm no. I can’t ever imagine it. The half was very hard for me, and it took a great deal of time and commitment to train for. I can’t imagine running for six hours, which is what it would take me at a minimum, to complete 26.2.
That being said, I could see doing another half. It would have to be a destination event, though, I think. Not just another half locally that’s “fast and flat” or anything like that. No matter what the terrain is, thirteen miles is a long way, and I’m going to need some other incentive other than to “just do it” to sign up for another. Either traveling, awesome scenery, great friends, or something.
Have to say, though, it does feel really great to see that 13.1 magnet on my car. :)
I’m up two pounds this week and not the least bit surprised by it (pissed off about it yes, surprised about it, no).
In the few days before the half, I allowed myself to indulge a little. I told myself I needed the fuel. And honestly, I don’t think that was the problem based on my weight the morning after the race (which yes, if you’re keeping score that was a whole two days ago).
I told myself since the race I needed to recover. I walked the first day, two something miles. I felt good, really good. Yesterday, with the summer vacation in full swing and unexpected meetings thrown onto my schedule, I didn’t exercise at all (I’d planned a walk).
I told myself it was OK to reward myself with dessert the night of the half (and every night since). I told myself it was OK to have an extra drink because I’d burned 1300+ calories at the half (and have, every night since….the drink I mean, not the burning of extra calories).
And then there’s the unexpected visit from Aunt Flo eight days early (WTF perimenopause?).
Add it all up and I’m swinging back up the pendulum the wrong way. And I can feel it: the urge to bypass bootcamp this week, to maybe take a Whole Week Off from worrying about food and exercise, the thought that maybe where I am right now isn’t quite so bad and maybe I need to just stop trying so hard.
So, obviously, none of those things are going to happen. I’m going to go and get dressed for bootcamp this morning, I already ate my normal sized healthy breakfast, and I’m going to have a good day today. That’s the only thing I can do at this point. I can beat myself up about the missteps over the last two, three, seven days, or I can suck it up and move (mostly) forward.
Obviously I choose to move forward.
Current Week: + 2 lbs (ugh ugh ugh)
Total Weight Left To Lose: 12.4 lbs
BMI: 27.8 (ugh ugh ugh)