Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Feelings and My Mirror Image

Recently I had lunch with a group of friends - my running buddies.We were saying goodbye to our friend who was moving away in a few days - such is the military life!  One of my friends brought out a picture of us to look at. The picture was taken earlier in the year, probably February, after one of our "long" runs.  She wanted to show it to me because of how different I looked then compared to now.

Now I'd already seen the pic, she had texted it to me. And it had been on Facebook after that run so it was saved forever in the "Photos of You" tab on FB.  So it wasn't new to me.  I actually thought it was a good picture of me and still do.  It was somewhere in the middle of my weight loss. I had a dress on that was probably not the most flattering, but cute!  So I guess I didn't understand why this was a valid before pic. 
April 2015

But what was new to me was the feelings I had about the picture being show at the table. I was mortified.  Honestly, I wouldn't even look at the picture because I was so embarrassed.  If you know me, you know I do NOT like having attention drawn towards me. I've always been like that.  Today was no exception.

I felt my face get hot as I tried to laugh it off, but I was going through emotions left and right that shocked me.  Why was I going through all of these feelings over a picture?? 

Now, the reason my friend showed the picture was not to embarass me or anything like that.  It was because she was proud of me, she was impressed by my hard work and dedication.  She thought I was awesome! 

But I didn't feel any of those things when I saw the picture.  That's because it was me that went through the all the changing. Beginning to end, I lived it. But sometimes I still see that girl in the mirror, so I almost took it too personal. I focused on the wrong part of the conversation and missed the praise that I was getting for working my butt off this year.

So i wonder, is this normal after losing a significant amount of weight?  I don't know. I've never been in this space before. My head hasn't quite caught up with what people see when they look at me.   Or what I see when I look at myself. But it will eventually. I hope!  This is a pic my son took of me today.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Sugar, Sugar!

Sweet, delicious sugar. It's everywhere. Especially during the holidays!  It seems like the holidays are one big reason to indulge mercilessly on every dessert imaginable.

Don't get me wrong, they are all delish! I love me some pie!!

But it's too easy. It's a slippery slope from one dessert once a week, to one dessert every night!  That hasn't happened to me any time this year, but it seems like it's creeping closer, that craving for sugary goodness.  I made both cookies and brownies in the last week, and luckily I was able to control myself from eating the whole lot of them.  But it also required me throwing them in the trash.  Oops!

So while this is probably the worst possible time to cut things from one's diet, I am attempting to cut most sugar out from my diet for the next 18 days.  Along with fake sugar. I know I consume too much fake sugar.  Real sugar I usually keep fairly low anyways.  But I drink Crystal Light Energy, use sugar free vanilla in my coffee, the list goes on.  Time to get a hold of things!  My plan is to keep my intake to 15g per day or less.

I am not cutting out carbs. I know that the 21-Day Sugar Detox plan doesn't allow for refined carbs and a lot of fruit. I am not following that plan. I am doing something that works for my lifestyle.  A friend of mine will be cutting sugar as well and we will weigh in with each other tomorrow and on Wednesdays. I hope she is ready to deal with my crankiness! LOL

Feel like you need to cut sugar?  Join me and post here!! 

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Little Engine That Could Part 2

So I decided late December that I would run a Biggest Loser Challenge on Facebook. I invited my friends and we got a group ready to start on January 5th.  I've run these challenges in the past and usually do pretty well, so I figured it would be the kick in the ass I needed to get healthy once and for all.  But when I'm done with the challenges, maintenance is always my worst enemy.

See, I have never known how to just maintain my weight. It's not just EASY for me.  I always gain it back.  So who was to say this time would be any different? 

I didn't know that my AHA moment had shown itself. I didn't know that I would use this Biggest Loser Challenge as a springboard to go above and beyond.  I like to play it safe. I set attainable goals to avoid being disappointed.

I met with a trainer at the gym on base who did a free fitness assessement - weight, calipers, inches.  I saw her every 6 weeks for the first few months.

I ended up winning the BL challenge and lost about 22 pounds in 8 weeks. I was motivated. I ran another few challenges, the last one ended about 2 weeks ago.  My starting weight was 198.  My current is 143.  I do not know when I have been this weight before, not anytime that I had a scale!  Probably high school or college. I didn't weigh myself much then. 

People have asked me how I lost the weight - I know people want a magic pill. I know people want there to be a quick fix. I know because I've lived it. I used to pore over people's Instagram's and Facebook pages and see how they lost the weight.  I knew I couldn't do any fads. No low carb, no low calorie, no gimmicks. I had to pick from different approaches and carve out a plan that worked for me.  I stuck to a lower carb plan but still eat plenty of carbs (150g per day). I try to get at least 100g of protein per day.  I limit sugar.  I work out 6 days a week.  In the beginning I was doing cardio and weights most days, then running took over my life. LOL.  I'm still running 4-5 days a week but plan to get back to weights 2-3x week next week.

So what should you do?  FIND WHAT WORKS FOR YOU!!  What is something you can sustain for the long term?  Is low-carb something you see yourself doing forever?  What is your lifestyle like?  What exercises do you like doing?  Carve out a plan that works for you that you can stick with every day.  We are all different and need different things.  For me, I LOVE running. Love it. I also love lifting, but not as much as running. Running is my ME time.  I function better when I get a run in.  I'm a better mom and a better wife. So find what makes you feel that way and run with it!

To date, I have lost 55 pounds. And I'm not done.  So stay tuned!! 

Sunday, October 18, 2015

The Little Engine That Could - Part 1

I'm back on the blog!  It's been awhile. I know I don't really have an audience, but I need the therapy that writing gives me, so I've decided to TRY to get back to blogging regularly. I feel like I lived a whole new life this year and I haven't documented any of it!!  Boo me.

2014 was a rough year. Friendships were lost. My husband was gone most of the year.  I was in a FUNK. Totally funkdafied. My health suffered because I was suffering.   I can see it now, looking back on it with a fresh pair of eyes. I was lost, I was sinking into a depression. I'm pretty lucky that my true friends stuck it out with me!

What happens when I become depressed? I stop caring. I start forgetting what the things I love to do are and lack consistency in everything.  It really is a slippery slope. Complacency, it's real. Now, I didn't completely drop everything. Was I in the worst shape of my life?  Nope.  I still was exercising - was I pushing myself? No. Would I rather go out for coffee than workout?  Heck yeah.  I wasn't really focused on my food intake. Clothes started getting tighter. Excuses were being made.  I blamed my thyroid.  I was sure there was a medical reason!

Got my blood work back. Thyroid - healthy!  A1C - above normal.  Pre-diabetic range. Say what???

A1C?  I'd never even heard of it. Well, it measures your blood sugar over a period of 2-3 months.  And my A1C was elevated.

Military doctor's advice?  Diet and exercise.  That was it. I actually didn't even get an appointment to talk face-to-face.  Military medicine at it's finest!  They put in a referral for a nutritionist.  Yeah, that nutritionist works on another base 90 miles away and only comes to the area once every 3 months.  What a joke.

What did happen?  Well, I thought about it. I really thought about my life. And how important it was.  I thought about my husband.  My three kids.  I had to make a choice - keep going on as I was, floating along. Maybe I would get diabetes. A preventable disease.  Some people might choose to go that route.

I didn't make that choice. I chose ME. 

More in part 2 later!! :D