Thursday, March 31, 2011

A New Quarter

Tomorrow is April 1 and then end of this first quarter of this year. During the last 3 months I have definitely had ups and downs. The first month was a quick start out of the gate, month 2 was trying to figure things out and Month 3 has been a bit of a stall.

So looking back on the last 3 months I want to take a critical look on what I have learned and the areas where I continue to struggle.

1. I have found that I do like working out and want to keep up my spin class and weight training
2. I still have trouble controlling what I eat especially when I am in my car at work and at night.
3. I need to have the right foods in my house to help me make the right choices
4. I enjoy positive feedback and it helps to drive my motivation
5. My stalled weight loss is very frustrating and can make it hard day to day when I don't see results.
6. I have high expectations about what I should be able to accomplish and get frustrated when I fail to live up to those expectations.
7. Eating a bag of chips, even baked chips is not an appropriate snack choices.
8. Weekends are hard and being busy is hard
9. I continue to want to be on this journey and to have success
10. I'm going to continue to try.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I was up most of last night for work and ended up having to work a bit late so I am just getting home now and only had about 4 hours of sleep.

I am now having a mental debate with myself about whether or not to go to the gym. On one hand I really need to as my lack of sleep and busy dad did not lead to the best food choices. On the other hand I just want to crawl into bed.

I know once I get there I will feel better, but just the effort required to put on my gym clothes and drive the 5km to the gym feels like more than I am capable of doing tonight.

These days make it particularly hard to stay on track because things don't go the way that I want them to. Unfortunately these days are regular in my life and they are not going to go away so at some point I am going to have to figure out how best to manage them.

At least I am thinking about going to the gym which is a major improvement to the days when going out and working out would be the absolute last thing on my mind. The question now is whether or not I can get there.

Sorry for the short post, but as the title suggests I am tired.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I belong

The Gym can be a very intimidating place. Often there are more fit people there working out than those trying to get fit. I figure that this I because the people who buy gym memberships and actually use them are the fit people. Those who want to get fit usually buy the memberships and then sit on the couch.

I’ve always been comfortable with the cardio area of the gym even if I’m not comfortable with how I look using the equipment.

The weight part of the gym though is a much scarier place. I have ventured over to the weight machines on occasion, but I was never really sure how much weight to put on them or how many reps to do so I usually ended up going back over to the bikes and treadmills.

The third area and the scariest is the weight section of the gym. This is an area that I have avoided at all costs. The reason for this is mostly because the people in this area a) look like they are supposed to be there and b) know what they are doing.

When I met with my sister a week ago to develop my upper body routine I thought at first she was going to take me to the somewhat scary machines and tell me how much weight to do on each, that was not to be the plan. First we started on the machines where you must first put the right handle on for the exercise that you want to do. Ok I thought I can handle this.

Then we moved over the free weight area and the benches. I thought to myself you must be kidding me. I did not complain and I watched as she demonstrated the exercises.

The first time I did it on my own I was scared to death. The guys using the equipment were serious about their work outs and I was a bit worried about how they would react to me coming over and using the same equipment. Their reaction, not what I expected, they were very polite and treated me . . . as though I belonged there.

I have now done this routine on my own 3 times and I’m getting more and more comfortable.

Next up, lower body.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Well I guess something is working

I pulled out a bunch of spring/summer clothes yesterday in an effort to find out what my kids will need for the upcoming season. In with their clothes were my spring/summer clothes and amongst those items I found 2 pairs of jeans.

So the obvious question, what were jeans doing in with summer clothes, the obvious answer, they were too small. Last night I picked up one pair of the jeans. It was the same size that I have been currently wearing, but had previously worn a bit smaller so it had been put away. I pulled them on easily and went about my day. It definitely made me feel good, but I knew that they had only been a bit snug before.

This afternoon I was looking for something to wear and I picked up the other pair. When I picked them up I remembered that I really liked them and despite being a size smaller than I am currently wearing I thought, why not. Imagine my surprise when they fit.

I teased my husband later and asked him if he liked my "new" jeans. He was about to comment, but then he said, oh you mean jeans that used to be too small.

I really appreciate this victory because it has come even when the scale has not really be budging so something must be working.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Wow I knew I was an emotional eater, but seriously

I've always known that I was an emotional eater, not to say that I have solved this problem, but I am aware of it and that is a start.

I am also aware of many of the emotions that trigger me to eat. They include, but are not limited to anger, stress, sadness and happiness.

Today though, I have been confronted with an emotion that I have not previously given much towards, boredom.

I have taken the last couple of days off of work in an effort to reduce my saved overtime and to do some organization around the house.

I have made good use of my time off and have gone to the gym daily. However being off for 3 days in addition to have last week off has started to have an impact.

Lets face it, today I am bored. I had a ton of things planned to do today, but I over estimated significantly how much time these tasks would take. I am now faced with a few hours of free time and I'm not sure how to fill them, actually I know exactly how to fill them, but I am trying to come up with options that don't involve 10 000 calories.

I really never realized before how powerful boredom can be. My first line of defense against this creeping feeling was to write, its keeps my attention focused and my hands busy, but unless I am going to a 10 page blog post (none of you have the time to read that) I am going to have to come up with another plan.

I thought about going to a movie, but the theatre in my city does not have matinee during the week and I don't have time to drive to the theatre 30 minutes way.

In addition to writing this for something to do, I do have a point.

It can be really easy to go through our days and our weeks without being aware of whats going on around us and how it impacts our choices. I could have easily started eating and watching tv and then would have probably been surprised when I did not have success at the scale next week.

Everyone have a good weekend.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Time to Get out the Cups

I feel as though I have been slacking over the last couple of weeks. I have not been paying close attention to what I eat on the weekends and during the week I make an effort, but I have been eyeballing portion sizes and expecting that my exercise will balance any over eating that I have done.

The results, not great. I have been hovering around the same weight now for a few weeks. Normally when I hit a stall I see it as evidence that I am not capable of weight loss and I subsequently quit and start eating.

That is not the plan this time around.
So what is the plan? It's time to get serious and to act like I started doing this yesterday and need to follow everything to the letter because lets face it, I do.

So as I was preparing breakfast this morning out came the measuring cups and spoons. Everything that went into my mouth first went into the cup (unless it was pre portioned like my yogurt).

I even measuring the milk that went in my coffee. 4 tbsp to be exact.
What came next, I wrote it all down.

I can't claim that this is not working for me if I'm not actually making an effort to follow the program. So for the next week everything gets weighed (I should probably find my food scale), or measured and then it gets written down. No more guessing how much I have eaten or trying to figure out if there is room for a night time snack. 

I don't guess the other important things in my life. I don't guess how much money is in the bank, I don't guess what time I have to pick my kids so what makes me think that I can guess at something as hard as weight loss.

Well the answer to that lies in many of my previous blogs - Its a mind game and instead of trying to win, I'm not going to play anymore.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


I was very particular when I was looking for a image for this blog. I was worried that if the photo looked too real people may think that it was a personal photo from home.

I have taken 3 days off of work to try and declutter my home. The clutter in my house is not very obvious, on days when my house is clean, nothing looks out of place and floors and surfaces are empty. My clutter comes in a more hidden form. This spring I went out and purchased my daughter a new spring coat because well it is spring and this is what I do every spring. I like her to look cute and a cute little spring jacket is what I do every year. So today when I was organizing some stuff in the basement I realized that we have 3 spring jackets in her exact size that were given to us by various family members who have older girls. So this discovery posed 2 important questions. #1 If there were already 3 coats at home why did I buy her a new one and #2 If I was planning to buy a new one why did I hold on to 3 other ones in the exact same size.

This discovery made me start to think why we hold on to things that we have no intention of using. Interestingly I have a bunch of diet books upstairs in my cupboard which I have no intention of ever using (because they didn't work or were too extreme). These include, but are not limited to Atkins, Fat Flush, Emotional Eating, Personality Diet.

From there I started thinking about other areas that I allow clutter and the impact that this has on my life. The clutter of personal belongings impacts me day to day because it affects how streamlined my day is and how easy it is to find things when I need them, also if I feel I should be making use of them and I'm not (thinking gym equipment) then its a constant guilty reminder of what I'm not doing.

I've started to think about clutter as more than just removing excess from my house. I am not thinking of it as removing excess from my life. 

So now lets look at weight from the lens of my clutter theory. Its not something I plan on using ( I don't need it to stay warm in the winter) so why do I hang on to it. Many may think that remaining fat is not a conscious choice, but we need to be honest in that loosing weight is as much psychological as it is about caloric intake and exercise. I didn't need my social work degree to figure that out, but when I look at myself as someone else and I think about what I would say them in a therapeutic setting this would be the conversation that I would have with them.

There was a moment earlier this week where I had an event that resulted surge of adrenaline and stress all at the same time. Earlier that day I had stopped for coffee and despite wanting a donut (they make the best apple fritters at this place, its not Tim Hortons) I was able to walk about. Later that same day only minutes after this event I found myself in Tim Hortons trying to convince myself that I was just here to get a coffee, but ended up walking out with said donut and not even the really good one that I wanted earlier that day.

Same situation, even less tempting in nature and yet I was not able to resist. The reason was all in my head. 

I realize more and more that I need to stop treating this like a simple math equation and that while clean eating principles and weight watchers points are extremely helpful in guiding what I should eat, they aren't the whole equation. I also need to start to declutter my thought processes and the self talk that isn't doing me any good and that I don't plan to use.

So if anyone has interest in some slightly used, but still in good condition, self talk and self sabotaging thoughts let me know because mine are available - I'm thinking about putting them on Craig's list. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

I can't

When I look at the different areas of my life, I don't often say the words I can't. I like challenges whether in my professional or personal life. I realized yesterday that the words I can't seem to come naturally to me when talking about exercise and my weight loss.

I have yet to figure out how I can be so completely compenent in so many areas of my life and be so lost and insecure about this area.

I started to recognize the I can'ts last weekend when I was working out with my sister. When discussing plans for my lower body workout I immediately started to talk about what I can do because of my knees.

I had also said to myself that I can't do spinning because of my size, but I know that I can do this.

During our abs routine I was quick to say that I can't do a full sit up. I said this again following spinning last night when I was doing abs with the other girls. So while they did their full sit ups I started to do crunches. Then . . . . I tried one and look at that I could do it.

This realization made me start to the question that other things  that I "can't do".

I need to start giving myself more credit when it comes to what I am capable of doing. I may be overweight and I may have a lot of work ahead of me, but that does not mean that I am not capable of this weight loss or the different exercises that I need to do to get me there.

So I am no longer to say I can't. First, no matter what it is I need to try. Then if I truly am not capable I then need to break down the challenges to completing the task and putting together a plan to figure out how to do it.

I don't settle for I can't in any other area of my life and I am not going to when it comes to my weight loss either.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Without this Blog

Lets face it. I've tried losing weight before, many many times without success. The only thing that has been different this time is my blog. Many may think that this blog is just a written account of my weight loss journey, but in reality it is much more more.

Without this Blog . . . 

  • I would not be examining my efforts to lose weight on a daily basis.
  • Without this Blog, I wouldn't be forced to acknowledge my bad days.
  • Without this Blog, I probably wouldn't try new things so I would have something to write about.
  • Without this Blog, I wouldn't be taking a critical look at my decisions, I would just shove them in a closet and move on the next day.
  • Without this Blog, I wouldn't care about being accountable to strangers
  • Without this Blog, I would not have the level of support I have from everyone who reads this and comments.
  • Without this Blog, I would not have heard the tips and ideas from everyone who has posted.
  • Without this Blog, I would not have faced some of my fears let alone made them public.
  • Without this Blog, I would not be going to a spin class 2 weeks in a row, 45 minutes away from my house.
  • Without this Blog, I would not have realized how much I need support which led me to start attending 2 Weight Watchers meetings a week.
  • Without this Blog, I would probably have given up by now.
  • Without this Blog I would not be excited each day to write about my day no matter how difficult or challenging it has been.Without this Blog I would do the same things that I have always done and gotten the same results that I have always gotten.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Oh, so that's a real work out

Since starting this journey I can honestly say that I have exercised fairly regularly. I have probably even used the term "worked out" on a fairly regular basis. There have been times after a particularly difficult work out class or video that I have felt sweaty and sore, but lets be honest, lately my exercise has been more about the quantity than the quality.

I have been happy to ride the exercise bike at home for an hour and pat myself on the back. What I have not done is paid close attention to the tension on the bike, my heart rate or whether or not this exercise had made me sweat.

Now moving is definitely better than not moving and my bike riding efforts are definitely an improvement from sitting on the couch, but I also knew that this level of activity was unlikely to have an impact on the definition of my body or my weight loss.

I wrote last week about my decision to give myself over to the mercy of my sister and let her develop a work out plan for me. We met for the first time on Saturday to develop an upper body routine. An hour and a half later I was feeling pretty good, I could still walk move my arms and I had been able to do all the exercises that she gave me.

The plan: meet again later in the week to develop a lower body routine. Once that was complete I was to do each routine twice a week with an hour cardio on the fifth day.

All seemed good, until I woke up this morning. I'm not sure what the word is to describe how I felt because I don't think sore would do my muscles justice. Even my shoulders, which I had been told we were not working out, were screaming at me.

I had originally planned to go do an hour of cardio early in the day, but I felt sore so it was easy to justify not going. After lunch out, I realized that I really needed to go put in a good effort.

So at 3:30pm off to the gym I went.
I started on the treadmill walking at a decent 3.0, I'm not sure what came over me, but I decided to try jogging at a 4.0. I did this 4 times for 30 second increments. I was successful in getting my heart rate up 20 beats during these intervals. After 20 minutes on the treadmill I started to feel my foot bothering me so I switched it over to my abs routine. As I was working out on the mat I saw the stairmaster looming at me. I'm not sure if you are familiar with this machine, it is not the little one with the two little platforms that move up and down, but the actual one that looks like an escalator. If you don't know what I'm talking about I have included a photo.

I hate this machine. Mostly because after about 3 minutes I am ready to fall off. Today, however I felt brave so off I went to conquer my fears. I only lasted 5 minutes, but I climbed 7 flights of stairs and I will do it again. 

The end of my work out was 25 minutes of bike riding. Now this time I paid attention to both my heart rate and the tension on the bike which obviously worked because I was sweating in no time.

I did not quite meet my goal of 60 minutes of cardio, but I did get in 50 minutes plus my abs and since tomorrow is another spin class experience that is going to have to be good enough for the day.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Good Days and Bad Days

I took the opportunity today to really examine where my head is at. I know that I've felt rather stalled both in my weight loss, but also in my thoughts and feelings about it. I've been looking for a big action or event to act as a catalyst to get this back, but today I realized that life really is not about big events or life changing moments. Real life is about every moment. I don't need to gain 5lbs to know that slacking on my effort isn't going to get me to my goals. On the flip side I don't need to loose a milestone amount of weight to know that I am making good choices and that I am moving towards my goal. Some days I will have more motivation than others. The days where my motivation is not there I am going to have to try harder to make good decisions. It's not rocket science, and its not even that complicated, but lets be honest that does make it easy.

Today I made the most of the motivation that came naturally and I did my best to focus on each choice that I had. Today the motivation was there which is a good thing because it was grocery shopping day. If you think making good meal choices is hard on a low motivation day, just try making meal choices for a week.

I am also thinking about my exercise options and I may consider a membership to the gym where my sister works out even though it is 40 minutes away. I will have access to the location that is local to me, but I am thinking that her weekly spin class might be worth the drive. 

Tonight's Dinner - Honey Lime chicken, sugar snap peas, and a spinach salad.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A New Goal

I have been trying to come up with a goal that I can visualize and focus on. It's easy to say that you want to be smaller or buy a smaller size, but it is different to actually have a item to think about. A lot of women use their wedding dress as a focus point when they want to lose weight, but I've been married for 8 years so that's not going to work. A thought came to me, but I wasn't sure if it was brilliant or evil. The plan, buy a bathing suit, the kicker, buy it 2-3 sizes too small.

As previously mentioned this idea has both brilliant and evil properties, I mean women don't like buying bathing suits on a good day and I'm going to buy one that I can't even fit into. Off I went shopping. I have decided to save the specialty bathing suit stores until I'm at my goal, for now I'm looking for motivation with a small price tag, so I headed to walmart. What I found was an array of bathing suits. The plus sizes ones look the same as they did last year and the year before, but in the regular size suits, so many options.

I bypassed the string bikinis, let's face reality, I've had 2 kids and started to look at my tankini options. I fell in love with a teal number with stripes on the waist band and the bust. I had the xl in my hand when I decided that if I'm going to go for it I have to go all the way so I put back the xl and put the L in my cart.

The suit physically does fit on my body. This is a sight no one will ever see. I an debating taking a picture as a before photo. The plan is to try the suit on monthly as motivation and to keep a picture (of the suit, not me in the suit) with me for motivation. The goal, to wear this bathing suit on the cruise at the end of August.

Something New

For the last month or so I have done everything in my power to avoid the image above. It started with a harmless email from my sister (my very fit athletic sister) telling me that she was going to be leading a spin class every week on Monday nights. Well that's easy enough to avoid I told myself as my daughter has an activity Monday nights and thank goodness my sister lives 40 minutes away.

The invitations kept coming and my excuses ran out when I mentioned that I was off of work for the March break. All of a sudden all of my well thought out excuses of why I couldn't go to spin class were gone. I was left with an option. I could either a) go or b) admit to myself and her all the real reasons why I didn't want to go. These reasons included, but were not limited to - fear. Fear really covers everything. Fear of not being able to keep up, fear of being embarrassed, fear that it would hurt too much, fear that I would look stupid. Who wants to be the one person in a group of really fit people struggling to keep up.

I have to give my sister some credit. She was very welcoming and showed everything with optional modifications.

The result - while I did not master the pyramid, I did spin the entire time and even stood up on occasion. At the end my bottom was sore, but I was also proud. Following spin class was a round of ab work and during those exercises I was proud that I could do many of the advanced moves.

Its funny looking at it now: My goal is to loose weight and get fit and the one person who I have avoided like the plague is the person most in a position to help me reach my goals. Interesting, isn't it.

Monday, March 14, 2011


I like many people naturally divide my year by the changing seasons. I often feel renewed at the change as I focus on a change in the weather and ultimately changes in my routine. There is not a season that I don't enjoy. I am not a fan of the cold and so of the 4 Winter is my least favorite, but without Winter there would be no Christmas and since I love Christmas, Winter will have to stay. That does not mean that I can not start my spring count down January 2.

Today the weather stayed above freezing and it did not rain. The sun has been out all day working to dry up the left over snow and rain. Today felt like a spring day. Now I know that we may not have seen the last of Winter yet as I like many of you remember regular late March and early April snow storms, but give me this for today.

The beginning of today felt similar to most of my days this late Winter. I feel blah, I'm not motivated and I'm not quite sure what the direction of each day should. I am off work for the week, which last week felt like an amazing gift that I was about to receive. Today it just felt like an empty day that I had to fill.

I decided to go out as the days don't feel so long when I break them up with errands and such.   This afternoon I came back outside and truly realized what a wonderful day it had become.

At that moment I decided that today would be the start of spring for me. Off to the dog park I went with my little Nikki. We arrived to find it full of mud, but she was so excited we went anyways because I couldn't bear how upset she would be if we turned around. She ran around the muddy fields and I then had to carry into the house and straight up to the tub.

It's funny how a simple activity such as the dog park can be rejuvenating. For me this activity represents warmer and longer days ahead.

The start of spring also signifies a new beginning which is great for me as the last couple of weeks have left me feeling unmotivated and frustrated with myself. 

Tonight I am off to my first spin class taught by my sister. I am a bit nervous about being able to both keep up and not look like a complete idiot. Wish me luck.

Friday, March 11, 2011

A Moment in Time

I have written before about the struggles of weigh in day and as much as I don't want that 10 seconds to control my week, lets be honest, it often does.

Yesterday could have been a difficult day as the scale had moved slightly in the wrong direction. I knew that some of it may have been related to a more relaxed effort on my part, but I also know that I was not feeling well and felt that my weight could have also been impacted by this.

I went against my better judgement this morning and stepped on the scale to try and test my theory of my physical health impacting on my weight. Well I can say that I was certainly surprised to see that my weight had gone down 3lbs from the day before and 2lbs less than the week prior. I know that this is not actually reflected in my weekly weigh in, but I don't care, that small victory to know that I may not have actually gained "fat" this week is what is going to get me through the weekend and start my vacation week off in a positive fashion.

I don't feel now that I have to lose what I gained and then try and take off weight for next week becuase I do believe that my weight this am was my true weight which is setting me up for a better start to the week to come.

I also returned to exercise last night. It was not a long work out, but the motions of doing the activity was also important to get back into the habit. Why is it that it takes 28 days to form a habit, but you can revert back to old ones in as little as a week. Some things are just not fair.

So unlike the last few weeks I am not seeing this Friday night as an opportunity to eat whatever I want. I have had a good day so far and want it to continue into the evening. Problem is that I haven't had to put thought into a Friday night dinner a few weeks so I am stumped. I may need to print off a recipe before heading home so that we can have something fun and new tonight for dinner.

I have noticed a number of new people following the blog either directly on this site or via Facebook and Twitter.

Thank you to everyone, knowing that you are out there reading every day really helps me and motivates me to keep going even when I've had a bad day or eating something I regret or am too tired to write. Seeing new people following the blog really rejuvienates my desire to do this and share my journey with everyone.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Kick in the Butt

Sometimes no matter how much you anticipate and prepare for something it does not change how you feel when it happens.

Today was the first day at my weigh in that I didn't experience a loss for the week. I wasn 't surprised and I actually expected it, but it still hurt. I want to be clear that I was not expecting a gain because I had made really bad choices all week. I definitely engaged in treating myself this weekend, but I did feel that my so so efforts over the last couple of weeks were going to catch up with me and on top of that I have not been feeling good and I think this may also have an impact on my weight at school.

So the good news, the gains was not a lot (less than a pound) and it was maybe the kick in the butt that I needed to get back on track.

I was serious in my earlier posts this week about getting back to just following the basics of the program with no expectartions or than to maintain my loss (I would have loved that this week). I am even going to go old school regarding my food tracker. I am pulling out the old paper food journal which can go everywhere with me taking away even more of my excuses.

I am planning to join my sister's drop in spin class on Monday (I may actually be crazy) so fingers crossed for a good week.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Wall

This is a very difficult blog post for me to write. Over the last 2 months I have pushed some of my own personal boundaries and have wrote about some of my insecurities and fears, but tonight is new ground for me.

I feel that I have hit a wall with my journey and I'm not sure where to go next. I have not been motivated during the last week or two to work out and I feel some of my food choices slipping. My motivation is still there, but figuring out how to get to the next level and keep up my progress is hard and to be honest, its really scary.

I have always had a strong disbelief about the theory that people stay big or fail to loose weight because of the fear of the unknown. I've actually laughed thinking that this is ridiculous, how can you be scared of loosing weight and be healthier and smaller. I'm not afraid of that, but I am afraid that I won't be able to keep going or that I won't know how to get past a challenge and sometime the thought is there that it would be easier to give up now before I make too much progress because I know the more I loose, the more devastated I will be if I can't do this.

My fears go past my weight loss and my food choices. They also seem to be creeping into my activity as well. 6 weeks ago I would be consistently at the gym during lunch trying my best at any work out video despite my level of fitness or how I was doing compared to the others I am working out with. Now I'm scared to try, I have come up with every excuse in the book why not to take my fit and active sister up on her offer to work out with me. I don't know the answer and I guess that is part of the problem.

I know that I continue to want this, but lately I feel too tired to try sometimes. I felt like I was lucky to avoid a number of the flu and cold bugs going around this winter, but lately I'm feeling that rather than getting an illness and just moving on I've just become a bit run down and I wondering if that is where some of this is coming. I am just tired. It is really hard to write about this and I am getting very emotional just putting down the words.

The good news is that after Friday I am going to off work for a week with my daughter. Then I go back to work for 2 days and after that I have another 3 days off just for me. I am hoping that somewhere during this time I will find me again.

Jacqui I will come out and work out with you, you just tell me when.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


I feel that I am often setting myself up for failure in the sense that every week after I get off the scale I vow to have a perfect week and with weight loss. Then I don't have a perfect week and I ultimately struggle to stay on track.

I was at a Weight Watchers meeting on Monday and the leader was talking about a member from a different meeting. This woman has lost 108lbs. The leader said that every week this woman's goal was to maintain the weight loss from the week before.

The brillance of it was that she was not putting any pressure on herself and obviously it worked because she went on to loose over 100lbs.

Now this line of thinking is similar to my blog about loosing 0.2lbs a week, but the difference is that for me that was a worst case scenerio not something to strive for.

I wonder if I am doing myself a disservice trying to aim for such big weight lossing because I ultimately set myself up that if I do anything less than that big number I have failed.

I think that there are other elements at play in the sense that if I was was consistently able to make good choices and focus on being a healthy weight I would have a weight problem to start with.

I am thinking the what if I went into next week with a plan that rather than saying I am going to eat only the healthiest foods possible and I am not going to eat any of my extra points and I am going to be perfect, I say - I am going to follow my plan, eat all the points allotted to me and maintain my loss from the week before. I don't actually know what that would look like because I don't think I have ever done it.

So this is my plan for next week. No unrealistic goals, no plans for 5-7lbs losses, just a focus on following the program and seeing what happens.

Monday, March 7, 2011

It's Monday so why am I already panicked about next week

Today like every other Monday I got up and got ready for week. I started to think about the week to come. About mid way through the morning I realized that this is my last week of work before my first week off of 2011.

First came initial excitement about the time off and that was followed by stress about the work ahead of me to get ready for vacation. Then the panic set in. The panic was brought on by the realization that I was going to be away from work and therefore away from my routine for 10 days (including weekends). I then return to work for 2 days and then I am off again for another 3 work days. The panic came from my recent experiences with weekends and I realized that if I can fall off track over a 2 day period, what is going to happen in 10 days.

Now in theory being home for 10 days should be the perfect situation for weight loss. No work stress, no rushing in the mornings, all the time in the world to plan my meals. In reality my time off never works this way. My daughter will start each morning with the comment "what are we going to do today" The answer staying home does not fit with her expectations and so off we go to a variety of activities including, but not limited to: movies, library, book store, out for lunch etc.

Unfortunately those activities do not always lead to the friendliest of eating situations. My panic settled by mid day when I realized that like everything else in my weight loss journey, what I need is a plan.

So at some point this week I am going to plan out my week of activities as well as the plan for my meals while out on the town with my little girl. I am hoping that this will help to keep me on track. I have decided to travel into work for my WW weigh in just to keep me accountable and I also plan to stick to my extra WW meeting on Monday night.

I will keep you updated about how I do, but I have to get through this week first.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Grocery Shopping

I need to admit first off that I stole the idea for this post from my good friend Deanna. She blogged about grocery shopping for the family earlier this week in her blog Her post got me thinking about the way that I grocery shop and as I headed out to the grocery store this afternoon I was really thinking about different personalities and the different ways that we purchase and prepare food for our families.

My friend like many others shops with a purchase. She heads to the grocery store with a list and a plan. Each day has a planned meal and the food that gets purchased has a purpose for each of those meals. She has written that she hates grocery shopping, but I think that someone who puts this much effort into shopping can't hate it that much.

There are some areas of grocery shopping where I completely agree with my friend. The experience of pulling up to a discount grocery store on a Saturday where there is barely room to push your cart and then finding out that half the sale items are already sold out (seriously who gets up at 7am to grocery shop on a Saturday) is extremely frustrating to say the least, but in all honestly I enjoy grocery shopping.

I know that many of you will think that I am crazy for saying this, but since we have been eating healthy I find grocery shopping as an opportunity to decide how I am going to feed myself and my family for the coming week.

I do not shop with a plan and I do not plan my meals in advance. The main reason for this is that I am just not that organized. Part of this is due to my ever changing work schedule. I like knowing that if I am going to be late at the last minute I can text my husband with some quick and easy meals ideas for him and the kids rather than committing him to the plan that I had for the evening. This is very specific to our family as not every has an unpredictable work life.

My trip to the grocery store is usually based around the sale items for the week. Which grocery store I choose is based on a number of factors; the sales for the week, how much of a hurry I am in and my food. For some reason shopping at the "nice" grocery story makes me feel happier than the "discount store".

Today I was a bit cranky and just wanted to get it down so off the my nearest grocery store it was. This is one of the nicer stores. 

I start in the produce section and then make my way around the perimeter. This is were the bulk of my shopping takes place. I then head down the aisles to pick up other staples such as cereal, lunch snacks etc.

The benefits to this way of shopping is that I am more likely to try new things if they catch my eye. The limitations of this are that when I get home I sometimes hear things like - "you bought more potatoes or we have enough bread for a bakery." Well you can't get everything perfect, at least the only thing I forgot was garbage bags.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Weekend, A New Approach

So I've decided to take a new approach to the weekend. For the last few weeks the weekends have been 2-3 days where I don't pay as much attention to what I eat, I don't exercise and I don't write anything on my blog.

The result is that I only have about 4 days to really work on my weight loss each week which has led to much slower results.

This weekend my challenge is to find a better balance between staying on track as well as finding opportunities to treat myself.

This morning we are at home with plans to clean the house and head to morning activities such as dance and a hair cut for my son.

There is no reason for me to do anything other than start my morning with a good healthy breakfast the same way I do Mon-Fri. That way if other situations present themselves later in the day such as dinner out I am in a better position to make the food choices that I want to make.

The weekends have represented freedom to me as its 2 days from work and an opportunity to do fun activities with my family. What I need to refocus is that the weekend is not freedom from making good food choices because ultimately that has a big impact on my weight loss journey.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Le pain, le fromage and le vin

So I'm not sure why I am channeling the French today, but as I ended my work day all I could think about was opening up a bottle of wine and eating cheese and bread. I guess compared to a big mac or deep fried wings this was not a horrible craving, but never the less it was certainly dangerous territory. Rather than take chance with these foods as a snack where there would be an increased likelihood of over indulgence I decided that if these were the foods I wanted I would make them my meal, have control over them and move on. So on my way home from work I stopped at the grocery store and picked up a baguette and a small piece (pre cut) of brie. I finished neither the piece of baguette that I cut nor the cheese. As for the wine, I opened it and poured a glass, but never drank it as I opted for coffee with a friend instead. I know Friday nights can be for me after a long work week. I was happy about how I chose to have control over my choices while still allowing myself a treat. Previously I would have eaten dinner and then around 8pm caved and then gone out to buy ether these foods or by them something worse for me. I also felt ok eaten a "meal" of questionable nutritional value as my last 2 days have been great and this was a well deserved controlled treat.

I have given a lot of thought to the coming weekend. We are planning a trip to a pancake house on a maple syrup farm. While I like pancakes, this activity for me is all about the kids so I am going to eat before we go and just enjoy coffee while I am there. One of my reasons for doing this is that we are thinking about having dinner out one night this weekend and I want to have some control over my other meals.

Another positive is that this is the first time in a while that I have written a blog on a Friday night. My is to write all weekend which will hopefully keep me accountable - we will see.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Phase 2

Today was awesome. Not particularly amazing happened, but it was an awesome day.

At my weigh in I was down 0.6lbs. Now I know compared to weight loss on shows like the Biggest Loser and Heavy that this would not even be considered a loss, but for me in the real world it is most definitely something to be proud of.

Now I want to give you all a bit of a visual. What is 0.6lbs. Well it is the equivalent to half a pound of anything. I like to compare it to half a pound of butter.

I have a few visuals for you

Each of these white sticks is a 1/2 pound of butter.

Now while it would certainly be my preference that I could take off these sticks of butter as they appear in the bowl. It would certainly be easier to see the results if each stick came off of one particular area. I have a list of my preferred areas too, but that is not the way that it works, unfortunately.

So why was this particular stick of butter any different than the other 24 sticks that I have lost?

Well for one, this is the 10th week in a row that I have lost weight. Now for some this may not be a big deal, but for me, I have typically given up weight loss by this point, after yo-yoing back and for for a few weeks. Not this time, the scale as so far only seen one direction even if the progress has been slow.

The other reason that this was such a great day was that I spend some significant time in the car today (not unusual for me) and it gave me time to think about some of my goals. I was also realizing how my weigh loss/health goals fit with my saving money (for vacation) goals. Not only does eating at home and staying away from fast food or even healthy fast food help me with my journey, it also puts more money in my pocket. For some reason today, this clicked and the day just seemed so much easier. It was easy to drive by Tim Hortons. I had the afternoon off for an appointment so rather than going out for food I came home before my appointment and made a healthy lunch (1 egg with egg whites, tsp of goat cheese and 1/2 a red pepper). I also knew that I had to work late tonight so before I left I packed my bag of food for the car; peppers, light cheese, almonds, blueberries and a healthy granola bar. Having that food made it easy to drive by McDonald on my way home and I happily munched on red peppers instead.

The way that I look at it is if I can loose 12.5lbs in 10 weeks by putting a pretty good amount of effort in, what would happen if I started putting in the effort that I did week 1? I guess I won't know until I try. I am fearful of trying because I don't always see great success even when I try hard and that is disappointing because its easy to think that I can see similar results without all that work, but I won't know until I try and there is no reason why I can't.

So back to basics. I am rejuvenated about loosing weight and I am motivated this week. So next scale, look out.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

I can't wait for Spring

March is here. Somehow for me it does not matter that we may still see another major snow storm or that it will be at least 6-8 weeks until it feels like spring. March signifies for me that Winter is on its way out.

I do not like the cold. I injured by back in a car accident about a decade ago and while I don't have any lasting issues when I get cold I tense up and this causes my back to hurt. So outdoor activities and sports during the winter are very low on my to do list.

I also find during the winter that I am more likely to eat heavier foods and more carbs. In the summer it seems much more normal to have grilled veggies and chicken for dinner or a salad. Those foods just don't seem to cut it in the winter.

I am hoping that spring and spring clothing will bring some much needed motivation to me as I feel that after 2 months of working on weight loss I am getting bored and frustrated with both the ongoing nature of this journey as well as my slow results.

When I think of spring I get excited thinking about getting my bike out to go riding with the kids, spending hours at the dog park with the dog, walking to the park and cooking healthy foods outside on the bbq.

So I will happily let the snow melt and I will deal with the puddles if they will bring with them the sun and the warm weather.

In my mind winter is coming to an end and with spring around the corner this means that I need to get myself into gear if I am going to achieve my summer goals I need to be on track now, not 6-8 weeks from now.

Today was better than yesterday and I have plans to end the day well with a good dinner, but I'm just not as excited as I was 9 weeks ago and I don't know what to do yet to get that excitment back. I know that it is out there, I just need to figure out something to bring me back to life when it comes to this journey.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

It's Just 1 Day

It's 9pm and time to look back at my day. I have to say that I am not feeling really great about my day and the choices that I've made. Today started and ended like any other day, but something was different in that I didn't try today. I think there is any other way for me to put this day behind me and move than to be honest about today. Breakfast was a bran muffin which despite the illusion on being healthy, really is not. Lunch was hard, I wanted fast food, I really really wanted it, I held on to my will power and stopped for soup and a bagel (yes I remember today's goal was no bagels). By the end of the day I had eaten a bag of chips and ate garlic bread and lasagna for dinner.

I wish I knew why today was so hard because it would certainly help to try and keep it from happening again, but I dnt think that there is a formula to good days and bad days. Today was not my best, but it was one day and I am not going to let one day or a few bad choices detract me from where I need to go.

Tomorrow will be better.