Saturday, November 30, 2013

I Fell Off the Wagon

I haven't been here in almost a month.
I've been neglecting a lot of things in regards to my health. I'm still exercising at derby practice. I'm still trying to use portion control. The convenience foods have made more appearances at our house. It's caused more problems than just health too.
I'm ready to get back to it. Tomorrow I will track my food again and try to avoid fast food.
I need some support and motivation though.
Help me out!

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Feel the Fear


I've talked about this concept a few times.  I think it's because most of what we can't do is all in our heads. Our bodies are amazing and capable creations.  If you REALLY stop and think about everything that's going on to keep you alive, and you don't even have to try, it is truly awesome. 
I've been trying to apply this concept of "Feel the fear and do it anyway" to many areas of my life. I initially turned down a job interview last week and then panicked when I realized I actually wanted to give it a shot.  I was afraid of sounding stupid on the phone when I called back and said "Oh by the way I changed my mind." But....I did it anyway. And it was fine. The lady was very nice, the interview went well and I learned a lot. I did not get the job but I have NO REGRETS. If I wouldn't have called back I would have been questioning whether I'd made the right decision.  I'm okay with not getting that job though as something is pulling me toward the one I've already been offered.  No regrets.
Tonight was derby practice. I find myself needing to write in here on these nights, as I've mentioned before, because I either hit a wall or break through one.  Tonight I broke through a MAJOR wall that's been up since I started roller derby in 2010. 
I have never been able to conquer my fear of jumping on skates. That's right, both feet in the air and then landing on my feet.  My feet that have wheels attached to them.  I always pictured myself flying out of control and falling, impaling myself on the cone we were jumping over (I mean really, it's a freaking rubber/plastic cone, my subconscious is slightly dramatic)
I heard before practice that we were going to be working on this skill tonight but I tried not to dwell on it. I figured I would either try it or I wouldn't but worrying about it beforehand wouldn't help.  We started with a few things that I know how to do well and I think that built up my confidence.  After we did those drills I was invited to join the "big girls" and do endurance training. I did that and it wiped me out. That was tough stuff.  I decided to rejoin the group of freshies and work on individual skills.We did some transitions and then moved quickly to the jumping. 
I started out petrified. I can' t lie. I stood back and watched the other girls doing it, even ones who were newer than me.  They were jumping over a little board that was 6 inches high.  They brought out a little pool noodle so I started by jumping one foot at a time over that.  Then I moved to jumping both feet over it.  I finally worked up the nerve to jump with both feet over that little board.
And I did it.
On the first try.
Without falling.
I may or may not have wanted to do a little touchdown dance at the end.  I refrained but I did shout "woohoo!"
I am insanely proud of myself. I was really scared to do that jump. But I let that fear sit there and I appreciated it for what it was. 
And then I did it anyway.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Turn The Other Way!

Ahhh finally--made it back to derby practice after almost two weeks! Schedule conflicts and personal issues kept me from going to the last couple of practices. I was dreading it today because I.....didn't want to work? Who knows. Self-sabotage I'm sure.  But I went!

We are still working on skills for our test coming up in a few weeks. There are still lots of things I have to work on and I really doubt my ability to be ready to pass the test in that short amount of time. 

I'm okay with that.

I've only been back to derby for 2.5 months and SO much has been added or changed on the skills test.  I have to remind myself how far I have come in a short amount of time but also that I took almost two years off of skating, so it may take half that long for everything to come back at a sustainable level.

We did some group practice but the last half of practice we were allowed to work individually on whatever we felt we needed to.  I spent some time on some knee slides but the repetitive knee to floor action was starting to become painful, despite the heavy pads.  So I switched to transitions (how you go from skating forward to skating backward.) I am able to do this fairly well but need to work on speed. However, I am really only skilled at doing it in one direction and you have to be able to turn both ways for the skills test.

When I first started trying to turn the opposite way from what I am used to, it was a major struggle.  I found myself getting really frustrated and wanting to give up on it. But I took a couple of small breaks and changed my inner monologue.  Instead of telling myself that it was pointless, that I just couldn't do it, I told myself to just keep trying.  And I did keep trying.  While I can't really do it moving quickly, by the end of practice I was doing 360s in both directions.  When I started the night I couldn't even do a 180 to the right. 

I am very proud of myself.  I think my experience in derby is representative of a lot of things in my life. I've often hit bumps on this little journey of mine, telling myself I could only do something one way and would never be able to do it differently. 

Turns out I just needed to teach myself how to turn the other way.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Buffets are Battlegrounds

I have good news--I've lost another few pounds. I am not officially recording any weight losses until I see the number more than once on the scale, on different days. I keep gaining and losing the same 4-5lbs and I am determined to be down into Onederland by January 1st.

Tonight we went to a buffet. We haven't gone out to eat much at all lately but we came into some money and decided to treat ourselves. We went out twice today really but one was out of necessity since we had to drive quite a ways to get the money.  Anyway I am pround to say at the first place I had a blackbean veggie burger and a green salad. 

The buffet was a bit tricky though. I first filled up a plate with a huge salad with lots of veggies and only a couple of croutons and bacon bits. I'm not much of a salad dressing person so I rarely worry about that. I just drizzled on a little bit. After the salad I drank a whole glass of water and then made a very small plate. I made myself eat it slowly and then I had another even smaller plate. And only one dessert. I started to eat two but then I decided I was too full and it wasn't worth it.

Batman ate too much and was miserable though so I don't think we'll be going back to a buffet anytime soon. It's just really not worth it and Batman can't say no to ice cream and cereal together.

Friday, October 25, 2013

You Don't Belong

It's been a week almost since I've written.
I've wanted to write more and I really need to write more. I think I will schedule three nights per week to write.  Two of those are usually derby practice nights because I hit walls and break through them when I'm on skates.
This week I happened to hit a wall.
 
We had a shortened practice and decided to work on basic skills since our season is over for the year. We started with some knee slides and went directly into time trials. I admit I wasn't warmed up and I was not feeling well. My asthma has been acting up terribly and I was having difficulty breathing even after a five minute break while the first group of girls did their time trials. I was prepared not to do as well as I did last time and that was probably my first mistake.
 
 

 
 
 
Last time I skated 28.75 laps in 5 minutes. The most I've ever skated the whole time I've done derby.  I was proud and a little shocked that I did so well.  So this night I told myself just to make it to 27 and I'd be happy.  As I was skating I felt weak and slow.  My legs were shaky and my head was spinning and my lungs were on fire. I never stopped moving and I did not fall.  

When I finished I asked my counter how many laps I'd done. 23.5.  That's it. I was pissed off. At myself. At my skates. At my lungs. At the world. I sat down to try and catch my breath, brushing off the compliments coming in from the rest of the team for my tenacity and perseverance. I am sad to admit that I never got back out on the floor that night.  I ended up taking off my skates, packing up my stuff and leaving.

I felt so defeated.

I'm not sure if I really lost 5 laps or if the last time it was miscounted and I never ACTUALLY skated over 28 laps. Either way I felt like I'd been punched in the stomach. Or the face.  Or something equally painful.

I came home and avoided talking to anyone. I went to the shower and I let a few tears shed. I had posted a status saying "I don't know who I thought I was kidding" and said that I was "destined to be fat and slow forever."

Batman finally got it out of me and I cried to him.

I am tired of trying and not succeeding. I am tired of wanting something SO bad and not being able to really work toward it. I'm tired of not knowing what is really holding me back. I'm tired of trying to figure out what to eat and what not to eat on a continual basis. I feel like I should know this stuff and I should be further along than I am. The scale has moved in the wrong direction--muscle mass I can now see since I'm not in the defeated blind stupor I was in that night (hello  my pants are all still falling off me, clearly I'm not gaining fat back.) I just feel....STUCK.
 
 
True I have only been on this journey for three months but in all honesty this battle is one I have been fighting for many years. I don't want it to be a battle anymore. Why do I have to FIGHT to take care of myself? Obviously not reaching those laps was symbolic of so much more that I feel I'm not reaching. I have a few more months to lose 10lbs and I really don't know how to do it.
 
Insert temper tantrum here--I do not want to eat fucking vegetables all the time. Confession: I don't like them that much. I used to like them, when I could choose to eat them because I wanted to and not because I want to lose weight or skate faster or have a lower blood sugar number. I get tired of cutting them up and thinking of ways to make them taste like NOT vegetables.
 
On my way home from derby that night I fought a lot of urgest to stop and get fast food. Why not just eat what I want, when I want? I'm going to die anyway right? Deep down I know I don't want to live the rest of my life being unhealthy. But damn I don't want to live the rest of my life counting calories either you know?
 
After I have had a few days to consider what happened at practice and what's going on with me, I am not feeling quite as discouraged. I know that my expectations of myself may be a little unrealistic. I've always been the hardest on myself.
 
 
 
I have to stop telling myself that I am not athletic, that I will never be thinner or healthier, that I will never be able to pass my skills test.  I have to rephrase and reframe those thoughts. And it's going to be tiring and it's going to piss me off having to concentrate like that for awhile. But eventually I'm hoping that I will be able to work through that and realize that I am all of those things if I want to be.
 
I do belong in roller derby, in smaller clothes, in a healthier place. Right? 


Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Cost Conversation

I'm out driving around running errands. It's quickly approaching a meal time, usually lunch but sometimes breakfast if I ran out of the house in a hurry (what mother doesn't feel that way most mornings?)
It's at this time that I have the Cost Conversation with myself.
I've never been a person with a lot of money. I used to have more disposable income than I do right now but when I think about how I could have been saving all of that money it makes me kinda faint. Anyway...
The Dollar Menu, Extra Value Menu, Value Menu, etc....
When I am having the Cost Conversation it usually starts right there.  I mentally calculate how much  money I have in cash or in the bank.  Then I weigh that against how hungry I actually am.  Usually I'm starving so a couple of dollars for a burrito, some chips and a drink sounds like a fantastic deal.
Over the course of the last several years though I've started factoring calories, carbs and fat into the Cost Conversation.
Sure $2.29 is a good deal, financially speaking on an immediate level.
But what is that 410 calories from the burrito and the extra 200 calories from the chips doing to my body? How many carbs am I consuming at one time? How much fat? How many hours of skating or walking or dancing am I going to have to do to work this off?
It becomes a little scenario of the devil vs angel type thing going on at that point.  The devil is telling me I'm hungry, that it's only a couple of bucks, it's only THIS one time, etc. The angel is trying to convince me that it's only a couple of bucks now but how many doctor visits and prescriptions will I have to pay for, how much damage am I doing to my kidneys/pancrease/heart with each bite and so on.
I'm not going to lie---the devil wins out a lot.  Fast, cheap and easy.  That's what everyone likes right?
Well if you stop to think about it, it's about as appealing in food as it is in sexual partners.  You get immediate gratification but you're left with a bunch of crap you don't want to deal with.
Yes I know that there are healthier options out there but let's be honest, the fast food companies jack up of the prices of a lot of those things in order to compensate for the cheapness of the rest of the crap. 
And it takes planning--which I can't do if my stomach is growling and I'm driving a stick shift in stop and go traffic in a construction zone. 
I have to pat myself on the back for basically getting out of the breakfast habit. I'd say I've gone out for a fast food breakfast once in the last four months? Lunch is a little more of a struggle though.
What are some ideas of stuff I can carry that will fill me up, is easy to eat with one hand, and can store well in the car?
I'm counting on you to help  the angel win the Cost Conversation next time!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Commitment Issues?

I am really glad my actual commitment to this health journey is better than my commitment to this blog.
I can't believe we are two weeks into October and this is only my 5th entry. 
As I posted before, I'm really working at making changes that are going to stick.  I'm having some struggles with baking--because I recently discovered that I CAN bake despite what I thought in the past--so I recognize that the holiday season will be a challenge for me in many ways. 
I am still determined to make good choices most of the time. Even on days when I eat a lot of things, I don't eat ALL the things that I would have in the past. I wish that I would have been tracking calories before, when I was eating tons of fast food and processed food. On second thought, I probably don't want to know what those numbers were.
Most days my calories are below 1800.  The most I've logged has been 2200 but those are on roller derby days. I'd like to get that down to 1800 as well.  On those days though I net well under 1600 though so I'm not sure that'd be a great idea.
Activity level has been pretty decent actually. I've gotten a few walks in, plus the roller derby workouts.  I'd like to walk more I'm just getting a little bored going around our neighborhood.  I have to take breaks. I went to a park last week with some friends and we walked a bit. I may head out there tomorrow and walk alone. It's kind of a drive but hey I have to invest in my health.
I think I mentioned before that I received some free products from Influenster.com to review. I've been using this really awesome BB+ cream from Pond's and I've seen an awesome improvement in my skin, especially since I've been spending a lot more time outside and it has SPF in it. My skin was something I was feeling kind of self-conscious about because I really wasn't able to afford products the way I have in the past. I'm glad to see it improving.
I've been needing to spend some time working on my mental health. There is a situation going on with a photographer who hasn't given us some photos we paid for a long time ago. Unfortunately I let this situation get to me and I turn into a person I don't like. The good part of that is the day after I become that person, I take time to unplug and focus on what's really important in my life--my family.  I wish that I could get that message into my head without having to deal with the negativity first, but I am working on it.  We had a wonderful weekend outdoors, hitting up a playground, taking walks, going to the apple orchard and another playground, carving pumpkins, grilling out in our backyard.  It was fabulous.  Even the pumpkins were happy about it:
This one was carved by yours truly. 
 
I felt completely relaxed and rested after the weekend.  Too bad Baby Bug didn't let us sleep and recover. But I'm heading that way now.
 
PS--Today marks 3 months since I started this journey! Thanks for supporting me along the way! <3

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Proud

So tonight we did yet another time trial at derby practice. We have to skate 27 laps around a regulation track within 5 minutes in order to pass our basic skills test.

When I started back up I did 24 1/2 laps in 5 minutes, the first night back after two years off.  A month later I did 27 laps in 5:49 (so roughly the same.)

Tonight, by some miracle, I not only surpassed that number but I outskated all of the other new girls who were there.

I added 4 1/4 laps to my own time, doing 28 3/4 laps in 5 minutes. 

I hugged some teammates after that.

I am so PROUD of myself. I have been working hard at getting my body healthier. During our endurance training tonight I kept saying to myself "How badly do you want this? Don't give up.One more lap. One more lap."

That's before I knew we were doing time trials tonight. 

I started to doubt my ability but I stopped myself. I told myself my body was strong and I could finish. I just needed to shave off 49 seconds. I told myself that even if I shaved off half, I would be proud.

I exceeded my own expectations.

How's THAT for motivation??

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Perception

I've been thinking a lot about body image recently.

When I first started this blog I posted a picture of my husband and myself emerging from the water after a swim in the lake in Tawas. It was that picture that inspired this whole adventure.

I did not know I looked like that.

I find this strange sometimes because I'll be watching something and see a really large woman and think I must look like she does when she's eating or naked or running.  I'm talking HUGE woman here though. Women who easily would be able to get on The Biggest Loser or Extreme Weight Loss.

I've heard of body dysmorphic disorder before.  I hear about it a lot with people who have lost significant's amounts of weight or even women who never were heavy but suffer from anorexia or bulimia. 

Definition

By Mayo Clinic staff
Body dysmorphic disorder is a type of chronic mental illness in which you can't stop thinking about a flaw in your appearance — a flaw that is either minor or imagined. But to you, your appearance seems so shameful that you don't want to be seen by anyone.
When you have body dysmorphic disorder, you intensely obsess over your appearance and body image, often for many hours a day. Your perceived flaw causes you significant distress, and your obsession impacts your ability to function in your daily life. You may seek out numerous cosmetic procedures or excessively exercise to try to "fix" your perceived flaw, but you're never satisfied. Body dysmorphic disorder is also known as dysmorphophobia, the fear of having a deformity.

So I haven't approached that level of obsession. But I wonder if I will ever see myself as thin? Even if I drop another 50lbs, I wonder if I'll always feel like the fat girl and always think I have to do something about it.

For awhile I worked very hard at not focusing on my appearance because of my daughter. From the time she was 2 until last year I really didn't talk badly about my body. I never used the word fat in front of her and we have talked numerous times about how bodies come in different shapes and sizes and healthy is more important than size.

After having my youngest child though I was suffering from PPD and was very discouraged by my appearance. It took me awhile to get down to my prepregnancy weight but even after that, everyone who has had a child knows that your body becomes shaped differently. My hips are wider and after being inactive for a year, my legs were jiggly and my butt was jiggly where all had been firm thanks to roller derby.  I began making comments and becoming distressed about things that just do not matter.

That's right. They don't matter.

My husband loves me and thinks I'm gorgeous and sexy and he always will.

So I guess it doesn't matter if I ever see myself as a skinny person. Maybe I never will be.  But I know that I will be healthy.


Saturday, October 5, 2013

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

I have to admit I've been tempted. I've been tempted to try and amp up my "dieting" and do tons more exercise so I can see some pounds melt off.
I'm feeling good. People are noticing my weight loss. The size of my clothes is creeping down (I bought a shirt at Salvation Army without an X in the size!) The number on the scale is creeping back down.
But really, I want this to be a lasting thing.
I want that weight gone forever.
And I know if I try to take it all off really fast, that's not sustainable for me. Right now I may be able to work out every day for an hour or two (if I do it during naptime!) but when I go back to work I can't. I may be able to eat only 1200 calories for a short while but that's not everlasting. Eventually I'll want to eat more food again.
So I'm going about this with the goal of making the changes stick.  I'm slowly changing bad habits into good ones. I'm slowly redefining normal activity for myself. I'm slowly replacing bad foods with good ones.
You know what they say.  Slow and steady wins the race!


PS--I promised a body image entry awhile back, before my shocking doctor visit. That entry WILL be posted tomorrow night, I promise! No really...I promise.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Seeing The Benefits

The nurse called from my doctor's office today. They received the results of my bloodwork. I was prepared for them to tell me I needed to go to the hospital to bring my blood sugars down to a safe level.
I was pleasantly surprised when the number was actually decent.
I referenced a test called hba1c.  That's where they draw your blood and check the average of what your blood sugar has been running over the last few months. For you nerd types, this link to Medline will explain the test. It also explains the results. I'll copy and paste that part:
An HbA1c of 5.6% or less is normal.
The following are the results when the HbA1c is being used to diagnose diabetes:
  • Normal: Less than 5.7%
  • Pre-diabetes: 5.7% to 6.4%
  • Diabetes: 6.5% or higher
If you have diabetes, you and your doctor or nurse will discuss the correct range for you. For many people the goal is to keep your level at or below 6.5 - 7%.

So my last one taken in March was somewhere between 9 and 11. I can't recall exactly. I think it was in the 9 range.  My best one ever was 5.6% a few years ago when I was much healthier. The number given to me today was 7.8%

I think I about fell out of my chair. I am sure the doctor probably did too.

I haven't taken any medication in quite some time so the decrease in that number from March until now was done purely by changing diet and exercise.

It's good to see results like that. Sometimes you wonder if what you're doing is paying off at all really. 

It is.  Keep going.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Slow Damage

I was diagnosed Type II diabetic when I was 22 years old.

I weighed 45lbs more than I do right now.

My diet consisted of primarily fast food, Chinese takeout, pizza and the occasional home cooked dinner loaded with fat and carbs. Lots of pop and desserts every single night--usually more than one.

One night after our weekly tradition of Thursday night pizza, I was having a particularly rough time breathing. My ex-husband took me to the ER for asthma and I ended up finding out that I was diabetic. My blood sugar was 437.

I won't bore you with details about what blood sugar levels should be and what can happen if your blood sugar is 437.  But suffice it to say, I really shouldn't have been upright at that point. 

I suppose I wasn't. I was in the hospital for a couple of days.

Over the years I've learned a lot about having diabetes. I've gone to diabetic education classes, met with my fair share of nutritionists and nurses and I've been on medication for the better part of the last 12 years.

Last year was devestating for us in many ways and depression took hold. When I get into a depression I don't take care of myself. I eat like crap, I don't take my meds, I don't exercise.

Basically I am committing slow suicide.

Today was my first doctor's appointment with our new physician. I knew that the prognosis wouldn't be pretty when I walked in there. I've been kind of keeping track of my blood sugars for the past month, thanks to my parents for giving me an extra glucometer since my old dipshit of a doctor couldn't manage to get me one. The readings have been really elevated.

They do lots of tests to check out the elevated blood sugar is affecting your body. They can do a finger poke to see what the glucose level is in your blood (which is how they found the 437 I mentioned above) They can do a blood draw to see what levels your blood glucose has been sitting at for the past 3 months--this is called an hga1c--but that takes awhile to get back. They also can do a urine dip.  That's what they chose to do for me today. I've actually never had anyone explain to me what levels of glucose in urine should be.

Turns out there shouldn't be any.  Hmmm.  A person with elevated blood sugars may have 25 or 50 and still be okay. Alarms start going off for them in the 300-500 range.  750 they get really worried. 

Mine was over 1,000.  ONE THOUSAND. She told me that if I had any ketones (I like mayoclinic.com for my medical info, read about diabetic ketoacidosis here) in my urine, she would have sent me to the emergency room and I would have had a fun-filled stay at the hospital. She actually said to me "I don't even know how you're functioning right now."

There are numerous other complications that can happen with elevated blood sugar levels but I think I'll just put those to the side for right now because my anxiety is already high. 

I am devastated that I have done this much damage to my body.  That I couldn't resist this unhealthy food and I ignored all the warnings from my doctors before.

You see, you don't really feel the full effects of the damage at an early stage. It's a longterm effect sort of thing. Yes you can feel fatigue and lethargy right away, but geeze, what mother doesn't feel that all the time?

Oh right, healthy ones.

She has a short term plan to get this under control while we work on a longer term plan. I'll take a medication that I can't take long term because it overworks the pancreas.  I was on this medication for many years and no one ever explained it to me. She told me that it's very likely that my pancrease can't even produce insulin anymore. She is putting me on it just to bring my sugars down and then we'll switch to something better. I will likely end up on injectable diabetic medications, insulin or otherwise.

Because I loved pizza and ice cream and brownies and french fries more than I loved myself.

I went to the grocery store afterwards to get my medications and a couple of food items.  I was standing in line in front of a small family--mother, father, little girl who was probably about 4. She was clutching a box of popsicles to her chest. I heard her dad tell her that she had to eat "chicken nuggets or ravioli--you're not just having popsicles tonight!" I glanced back at their small grocery order--lunchables, canned ravioli, bagged chicken nuggets, and popsicles.

I couldn't help it, a tear slipped out. 

This food is so DAMAGING to our bodies and yet we continue to eat it. We give it to our children.  I am somewhere between sad and angry now.

I am in no way blaming others for what I have done to myself.  But I do recognize that I didn't get here alone. Our society makes being healthy something trendy rather than something normal.  It makes it seem so out of reach for those of us who don't have a lot of money. They make the bad for you foods more appealing to children. They make them cheaper. They make it easier.

I know that I chose to put that food in my mouth.  Anyone who has struggled with an eating disorder of any kind knows that the choice isn't always that simple though.

I came home and explained to my family that my body is not healthy and that we simply CANNOT have this junk food anymore.  It's not a treat.  It's poison.  You don't treat yourself to a sip of antifreeze. You don't treat yourself to a syringe full of gasoline. You don't treat yourself to a spoonful of rat poison. 

Stop "treating yourself" to kidney damage and heart disease and obesity.

I can't do this to myself anymore. I'm scared that I will keep doing it though because it's what I know.

I need help. I need accountability. I need ideas on what I can actually eat because it really feels like slim pickings right now (I can only eat so much salad, chicken breast and green beans....)

Mostly I need reminders to love myself and to take care of my body and to show my daughters how to do it as well. I do not want them to end up where I am because I decided to show them my love through cupcakes and ice cream.

They deserve better. And so do I.



Friday, September 27, 2013

When Success Leads to Progress



I stepped on the scale a few days ago. I saw the number and frowned. It couldn't be right.  I stepped off, zeroed it out and stepped back on. Same number.  One final step revealed the same number yet again. I decided that it was wrong and I'd wait a couple of days and weigh in again.
I've been struggling a lot, that's no secret. I wanted to make sure that the number on the scale was accurate.
This morning I stepped on again.
I blinked.
It was a different number, but not the one I was expecting.
I stepped off and back on two more times, convinced that it was wrong.
Each time it said the same number.
The last time I weighed in and put my progess into myfitnesspal, I weighed 209.
The number today?
205
That's one pound less than the "wrong number" from a few days ago.
I am still kind of not convinced but I'm going with it.
I weighed myself again a few minutes ago--still in the same number range (because you know you fluctuate a pound or so depending on the time of day)
Seeing that number this morning really motivated me though. When I went to the grocery store I bypassed the junk food for the most part. What junk food I did buy was mostly a treat for Monkey and Batman because I don't really like cheese puffs. The rest was fruit, veggies, some Lara bars marked down for clearance, and some of my WIC stuff for Baby Bug.
When I got home I brought the groceries in and then promptly turned around, packed up the stroller with snacks and water for me and Baby Bug. I turned on some tunes, gave Baby Bug her snacks and off we went for a 2.5 mile walk.  The sunshine and the fresh air was great. Baby Bug was awake most of the time but fell asleep about 10 minutes before we got home. I sat outside when I got home and let her snooze a bit.
So today is a good day so far. I was stuck for awhile and even if that number turns out to be a little low when I go to the doc on Monday, at least it prompted me to get moving and make better choices today!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A little more on self-care

This is such a hard task and that seems a little ridiculous to me.

Taking care of myself is low on my list of priorities most days. I could sit here and wonder why this is. I know why it is though. Women are socialized to drop everything and care for others in our society, particularly when that woman is a mother.

Today I made sure to have a good water intake.  I've been feeling the effects of dehydration for a few days now, particularly when I spend an hour or two at roller derby. I always remember to drink water while I'm there but I need to drink more in general so when I'm there, I'm already well hydrated.

I'd like to take some time for some more beauty rituals too. I used to spend time doing my hair and make up every day. I spent tons of money on beauty products and makeup. I don't want to go back to that necessarily but I'd still like to not look in the mirror and wonder why my hair looks all wild and and why my skin looks so dry.

I was pleasantly surprised when I was chosen for some free beauty samples from Influenster. They chose me to test the products in their MamaVoxBox.  I received it today:

Ponds Luminous Finish BB Cream in two shades, some Dr. Scholls gel inserts and some Annie's Mac and Cheese. I received them all for free for testing purposes.
 
It also contained a belVita cookie that I already ate. The cookie was good and nutritious. I wouldn't necessarily eat it for breakfast but it was anice treat.
 
Anyway I'm looking forward to trying out the BB Creams and letting you all know if it helps improve the appearance of my skin.
 
Keep your eyes peeled--I have a good blog post planned for sometime in the next few days. I hope you'll be here to read it!


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Creating Good Habits

When I first started on this journey was creating good habits--eating habits,movement habits, sleeping habits, writing habits.

I have started falling back into old habits although improved from before.

For example, the other day we had really fattening meals twice in one day and I realized I had not done that in months. And I felt it. I told Batman that I did not want to do that anymore, that I couldn't believe we used to eat like that every single day.

So I've stuck to fairly decent meals for breakfast and lunch but have been struggling with dinner, mostly because of timing and issues that have come up around home.

But I don't want those to be excuses. Those things are just called LIFE. I don't have to cope with them by eating crappy food or cop out of exercise because life happens.

So I am committing to writing here every day again. I will just have to force myself to think about my health enough to write something every day. Thinking about it and writing about it help me actually DO it, and that's what I need the most.

I will get back on my goal of eating more veggies--the one I started in January. It's like I hit it and decided I was done and now....I don't think I had a veggie today.  Not good, not good at all.

I wish I could map out or graph my progress--more than just my weight going up and down. The bad days and the good days, so I can see how many days were good overall and not focus on the bads.

Good thoughts, good habits. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Feel The Burn

Last night I shadowed the outside pack refs for back to back roller derby bouts. I had my skates on for nearly 5 hours and 3.5-4 hours of that was solid skating--back and forth, stopping, turning, and skating fast and slow.  At first it did not feel like a major workout because I wasn't in the game, hitting girls or even skating for long stretches of time (which you never do in a bout because each jam is only 2 minutes long, so you have a break every 2 minutes anyway.) I'd say the last 45 minutes changed my mind, that's for sure. My thighs and calves were aching along with my feet.  That was serious business folks. I've alwasy respected refs but even more so now.
I love skating because most of the time I don't think about it being exercise.  Or if I do it's broken up in many ways--different drills, different speeds, etc. When I go to the gym it's not the same, it's more monotonous despite the various machines and weights. But skating, roller derby....I don't get bored.
I'm planning to try and add more workouts back into my routine. I've been in sort of a slump with everything and am digging my way out with a baby spoon it seems.
But hey, at least I'm digging out right?

Friday, September 20, 2013

Lazy!

I've gotten really lazy as of late.
I don't blog as much. I don't log all my food religiously. I don't exercise/go for walks. I don't meal plan.

I don't want this journey to end at 2 months. I know that every day is a battle and requires me to rededicate myself to...myself.  I need to commit every morning and sometimes more than once a day.

I have to admit this is a slump I'm having a hard time overcoming. I hate that I start out with so much steam, energy, enthusiasm--and then....back to what I've always known.

I don't WANT what I've always known but somehow I keep going back to it. 

Get me out of here!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Hard To Top That!

It's hard to follow an entry in which you get to see me in my underwear. That's probably why I haven't written since then!
I've gone over this in my head a bunch. Should I write daily? Weekly? When I feel like it?
I definitely shouldn't do it when I feel like it because I need the blog to motivate me to do other stuff. I was pressuring myself to write every day but after awhile, I just can't consume myself with thoughts of my healthy eating and exercising.
Life steps in, you know?
I'm going to try and write at least every other day because I think two days worth of work is more interesting to write about and read about than one.
We've had a trying week here in our household as far as health goes. My in-laws came from out of town and it was an eating fest for a whole day last weekend. It's been difficult eating at home because of not having grocery money--so we've eaten at other people's houses and such. Not every day but some days (three times actually!) There has also been pizza and taco bell because of ER trips and urgent care and so many other things.
My body is paying for it too. I'm fatigued and cranky.  I'm trying to be better today but the junk is still here so I ate it. It's gone now I think. Thank goodness.
I sort of feel like taking a nap. Maybe I will.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Visualizing Progress

Other people are starting to notice our progress.  We spent the day yesterday with Batman's family and they all remarked on his weight loss. I got a comment about mine but hey he's lost like 30lbs and I've lost 18....his is definitely  more noticeable.
Sixty days ago I made this commitment to myself and I've stuck to it. I'm making the changes I want to make at a pace that I feel comfortable with. I'm also not getting hung up on little setbacks.  Hell they aren't even really setbacks. Sometimes I just want to eat pizza or cake or donuts or lasagna. But sometimes I don't. And I feel okay with that.
In honor of my sixty days of progress, I present to you a collage!
That's day 1 in the green and day 60 in the gray.  Bummed I got the wrong angle but it was too cold to get half naked again.
 Oh and this shirt? used to be snug!
 
 
Time to take this strong hardworking body to roller derby practice! 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Importance of Sleep

 
The little heatwave we've had this past week has caused our family to once again retreat to the living room to seek relief from the humidity and uncomfortable sleeping in our rooms without air conditioning.  Unfortunately Baby Bug has had a mild cold this week as well and hasn't been sleeping very consistently. It's difficult for her to breathe lying down and she also can't suck on her pacifier or a bottle for long without having to pause for a breath. Needless to say, we haven't gotten very restful sleep lately.  Last night was the worst though. She was restless from 11pm until 2am and then from 2:15am until 4:30am she was awake and uncomfortable and uncontrollably crying in spurts.  Since we were all in the same room, none of us got very good sleep. Poor Batman had to get up and go to work and Monkey had to get up and go to school. I had to function enough to keep Baby Bug out of trouble and that was quite the task.  My head felt spinny and my body was aching (did I mention that Baby Bug handles her discomfort and exhaustion by climbing all over me?!? Well...she does...and has for the past few days....)
 
(This photo is not mine but I lost the link and can't remember the search criteria to find it again!)
 

As such I wasn't terribly motivated to make nutritious food for us to eat. It's a good thing that I don't keep junk food in the house anymore because I would have consumed it all today.  I was basically cursing myself come dinner time because I no longer keep frozen pizza (or frozen prepackaged anything really) in the house.  I managed to scrounge up a dinner of sauteed chicken breasts, rice, black beans and sweet peas.  It was mediocre but hey it wasn't frozen pizza and I had a full plate of food for just under 500 calories. 
I DID manage to get in some exercise today, more out of necessity than desire.  Baby Bug was refusing her afternoon nap and I was on the brink of insanity, having been trapped in the same room for the past several days (we are short on money again so I have minimal gas to go anywhere, not to mention money to do anything once I get there...) I packed Baby Bug up into her stroller and we took a mile and a half walk. I would have gone further but my body was exhausted after last night's derby practice followed by two hours of midget wrestling and only 4 non-consecutive hours of fitful sleep. Baby Bug did fall asleep and I finally got to lay down.....only to be woken up about 15 minutes later by Monkey returning home (an hour earlier than her dad has dropped her off all week) and loudly requesting to play outside with her friends. I shushed her and sent her outside but then I had to be a awake to listen just in case something happened outside. So, basically no nap for me.
I know I've written about the importance of sleep before but here are some reasons why it's so important.
Taken from http://www.health.harvard.edu/press_releases/importance_of_sleep_and_health:

The Harvard Women’s Health Watch suggests six reasons to get enough sleep:

  1. Learning and memory: Sleep helps the brain commit new information to memory through a process called memory consolidation. In studies, people who’d slept after learning a task did better on tests later.
  2. Metabolism and weight: Chronic sleep deprivation may cause weight gain by affecting the way our bodies process and store carbohydrates, and by altering levels of hormones that affect our appetite.
  3. Safety: Sleep debt contributes to a greater tendency to fall asleep during the daytime. These lapses may cause falls and mistakes such as medical errors, air traffic mishaps, and road accidents.
  4. Mood: Sleep loss may result in irritability, impatience, inability to concentrate, and moodiness. Too little sleep can also leave you too tired to do the things you like to do.
  5. Cardiovascular health: Serious sleep disorders have been linked to hypertension, increased stress hormone levels, and irregular heartbeat.
  6. Disease: Sleep deprivation alters immune function, including the activity of the body’s killer cells. Keeping up with sleep may also help fight cancer.
So my next number goal is to get a full 8 hours of sleep every night. My health depends on it!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Positive Self Talk

This entry is likely to be long and a bit scattered so bear with me. 

Today I watched the movie "The Secret." I've heard the concepts from the movie several times but had never really watched it.  I had to watch it in increments between a screaming teething baby and various other household tasks. I really wanted to HEAR the whole message so I can implement it.  If you are not sure what I am talking about, please Google it because I know I won't explain it very well.  My interpretation of it is just that--mine.  So I think you should watch it for yourself anyway.

It made me realize that I have been dwelling far too long on what I don't want rather than on what I do want. Focusing on what I don't have rather than what I do have. Focusing on what I can't do instead of what I can do. 

I dug up an old journal of mine and decided to follow the advice in the movie and write down what I am thankful for. I wrote all the things I am happy to have/do/be and that I am grateful for all the things I will have/do/be.  I read through some old entries and realized they all focused on negative things as well.  It's hard to reframe your thinking.  It's so easy to fall into the "I can't, I never, I always" way of thinking negatively.

I have been working on having an attitude of gratitude for awhile now. I'm always thinking about how thankful I am for the OBVIOUS things--my kids, my husband, my home, etc.  I am moving on now to being grateful for all of the things around me because even the bad things can end up good.

I have to tell you about a time that I inadvertently used the methods from "The Secret" and it worked. There was a particular building in the apartment complex where I used to live. It was overlooking a large grassy area where my daughter could play. There were no basement apartments so no matter what I would have a balcony or a patio.  It seemed to be in a quieter spot than where I was living in another building. Every time I would walk by that building I would say "I am going to live in that building some day." I lived in that complex for 3 years and had just signed my third lease when our basement apartment flooded. I was 31 weeks pregnant and in the hospital when it happened. We were moved to another building in the complex.  To THE building. The one I was always saying I was going to live in. We only ended up living there for six months and it wasn't as great as I had anticipated but I never would have known that if I hadn't gotten the chance to live there.

And that wish/hope/goal I had came true because of really negative thing--losing my apartment to a flood.

And now that I have written that I realized that it worked another time. The neighborhood where we live now is really beautiful. I would drive through it sometimes when I was going from where I lived to where my parents live. I would look at the beautiful houses and say "I am going to live here some day" and I truly believed it.  And, well, I've been living here for almost a year now! 

In both of these instances I wasn't making a wish or really TRYING--it was just something I knew would happen one day and I felt confident about it.

Positive self-talk isn't a new concept but I think I was misunderstanding it before.  I was almost lying to myself before--fake it til you make it kind of thing.  But I wanted to reframe that and make it work tonight at derby practice.

I decided that I was going to banish the I can't/won't/don't attitude and thoughts and replace them with positive thoughts and affirmations of my abilities and my trust in my body. 

Tonight's mantra was "My body is strong and I can do this."  I repeated it in my head and even out loud several times.

And I'd say it was probably the best practice I've had in awhile. Even when I encountered something I was struggling with, I didn't let it break me down. When I felt like I was going to be defeated I would say "My body is strong and I can do this" and I would also visualize myself getting through the next 30 seconds or 2 minutes. 

So I have journaled about a lot of things I want for myself and my family and I'm going about making that happen. I'm visualizing my life as good as it can get--me healthy, my kids healthy my husband healthy.  And all of us are smiling. 

It really doesn't get better than that.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sweating

I did an exercise DVD yesterday--Yoga Booty Ballet: Burlesque.  I bought it used at the video store a few weeks ago because I wanted to have options for my workouts.  And I've always liked burlesque. I considered doing it myself a few years ago but I was already doing roller derby and didn't really have time for another activity while I was working full time and going to grad school.
When I first started the DVD I wasn't sure I was going to get much of a workout. The movements weren't particularly challenging, just require a bit of coordination I still need to work out. I didn't get to finish the DVD before Baby Bug woke from her entirely too short nap.
I was surprised to find myself dripping in sweat after a shortened workout.  I don't know if that's a good thing or not but I was pretty pleased with it.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Mind Over Matter

Tonight was my first derby practice in a week and a half due to the rink being closed during the holiday to get the floor resurfaced.
It wasn't a great practice for me personally.
I am ashamed to say but the phrase "I can't" came out of my mouth more times than I can even remember.
I was feeling frustrated because I was really struggling to understand the drills we were doing even though I've done many of the skills individually several times. And when I got frustrated, instead of trying to slow down and figure out it, I gave up and said "I can't!"
Lucky for me, many of the girls were really patient and helpful and walked me through some of the drills.
I took a couple of falls tonight, no big deal. But I did hurt my hip and elbow on the last fall. I iced it briefly but got back out on the floor. My confidence was shaken though.  I didn't trust my body, I didn't trust the other girls. Bad combination when it comes to derby.
I left early because my mind got the better of me. I was frustrated with myself and really only cheated myself out of an extra fifteen minutes of working out. 
Maintaining a positive attitude takes effort sometimes. A negative mindset can really get in the way of anything good your body wants to do.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Small Victories

I'm not sure if I mentioned it but I bought a scale awhile back at Goodwill. So far I've not really obsessed over the numbers, just paid attention to how my clothes fit and how my body feels.
Batman and I have both weighed ourselves a few times over the past week. I think it's time to choose an official weigh-in day though. 
I am happy to report that we have both lost. He is down a total of 30lbs and I am down a total of 17lbs. He started out with significantly  more weight to lose than me though so it's even really.
Someone asked us what we changed.  We've changed a lot really--we don't eat a lot of unhealthy food, we don't eat processed food often, we eat more fresh fruits and veggies, lots less fast food. But our mindset has changed too. Food is becoming less of a comfort and more of nourishment in our minds and in our bodies. We still enjoy food immensely but I am having fun finding healthier ways to feed us. I'm sneaking more veggies in whereever I can, not because we don't enjoy eating them but because it's easy to just add extra to sauces and soups and stir fry dishes as well as smoothies. It doesn't change the flavor profile much  but adds lots of nutrients.
We are coming to the close of the summer and all of the fresh produce won't be available at affordable prices. I'm trying to determine the best route to take. I plan to freeze some of the fresh produce I get so it will last longer.  We've started getting some canned stuff too.  Turns out Baby Bug loves mandarin oranges!
The best part of all of this is that it's becoming second nature, it's becoming habit, moreso than turning to junk food. Even the other night when we went out to eat unexpectedly, I chose brown rice, black beans and no tortilla for my burrito, automatically.  I just went to the healthier choices without having to debate about it. 
It's the small victories like that which cause me to celebrate :)

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Oh Stress

There is always stress.
Our biggest source of stress is money. Always money.
Or lack thereof I guess.

I'm trying really hard to manage stress in a healthy way because I can't eliminate it completely. I'm not just talking about stress eating, I'm talking about mentally and emotionally.

I'm a worrier and obsesser and overthinker.  It keeps my brain full of negative energy. I'm learning new ways to cope with stress because it has such bad effects on my body, physically and emotionally.

We had some major car repairs just sort of pop up tonight, all at once. It's not like we had the option to not get them done because our safety was at risk and hubby needs his car to go to work to support our family.

I am grateful for a lot in this instance--that hubby was able to get approved for credit to pay for all but $86 of his repairs, that the guys at the shop were willing to work with us and gave us several discounts, including not charging labor for putting a new tire on my car, that hubby can go to work tomorrow,  and that we are all now riding more safely.

I took some time to rest today because I haven't been getting great sleep. The nap helped me to not panic or get too upset over the whole ordeal.

I really wish I could have gotten in an extra workout tonight to help out (did I mention all of this happened at dinner/bedtime??? Yeah....)

Oh stress....you are so not welcome here.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The Right Mindset

Still struggling.

Not going to lie I feel like I've lost steam and am trying to figure out how to get it back.

I have consistently eaten over my allotted calories for the past week or so?

I used PMS as an excuse.

Then the holiday weekend even though I prepared most meals at home and had no reason to not make something healthy.

Today was Monkey's first day of school and we go out to lunch at Wendy's with her dad every year. I could have chosen better but oh the junk looked so good.

Fortunately my dinner was relatively healthy but it did not negate my 1200 calorie lunch.

What I do take comfort in is the fact that I used to eat multiple meals like that per week, sometimes per day. At least that was basically the first fast food meal I've eaten in awhile, aside from a burrito here and there from Taco Bell.

Tomorrow is back to a normal schedule. Monkey will be at school all day. Baby Bug and I will be home the rest of the day after we drop her off. I'm supposed to go to roller derby off skates practice but the kids can't go to my parents because my dad has something contagious, so I don't think I can go. I may go for a walk if I can manage it.

No wait.

I can manage it.

I will go for a walk tomorrow.

I know better than to get in the mindset of "if I can" or "maybe" or "I'll try."

There's a reason that Nike said "Just Do It."

Watch MapMyWalk tomorrow. My walk will be on there.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Doctor Debacle Continues

I know I wrote about meeting our  new doctor earlier this month. I got our primary care switched over to this doctor right away.
I kept forgetting to call back to schedule an appointment. I finally managed to remember earlier this week.  I was HOPING to get in very soon. But that's not going to happen.
My appointment is 9/23 and Batman's is 9/30. 
My blood sugars are terrible at the moment. I haven't really been treated since March and I really need to get on medication. I'm trying to control my eating but it's sort of beyond a diet issue at this point. I can't do it myself.
Batman's issues aren't as immediate as mine but we both need new inhalers soon. The humidity has been ridiculously high and making it difficult on our asthma. I hope that we can last almost another month with what we have left because we can't go back to our old doctors and the new one can't prescribe us anything because she hasn't seen us yet.
*sigh*

I'm ready for the cooler weather so I can breathe and exercise more. It's supposed to cool down this week and I have walks planned for Tuesday and Wednesday for sure.  I'll probably go for walks every day. I have an off-skates derby practice Wednesday evening as well.
I'm trying not to go backwards here.  Even staying in the same place for now would be okay.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

My First Numeric Goal

I'm currently sitting at 212lbs. I've been in the 200s for my entire adult life and the closest I got to getting under it was 202lbs in 2009 when I was going through my divorce. 
It's not a diet I would recommend because divorces suck in the long run but at the beginning of that process I was HAPPY. I was free from a loveless/sexless marriage and I was taking care of myself and my daughter basically on my own. I dropped over 20lbs in approximately 2 months time. 
Of course all of that came back, and then some.
I can't recall but I was somewhere in the 230s-240s when I got pregnant with Baby Bug.
So I'm pretty happy but be sitting at 212.  That's 40lbs less than my highest weight ever as an adult.
I try not to set numeric goals because it's just a NUMBER. I don't want to obsess over the number on the scale or on my clothes or on the calorie content of my food.  I use them as tools but don't want them to be the only measure of success.
However, I think it's time to set a small numeric goal. So here it is.
I want to be lower than my lowest adult weight by the time Baby Bug hits 18 months old--12/18/13. My goal is to be 201 lbs.
Weird right? Most people would aim for 199 just to say they made it into "One-derland."
I think 201 lbs is a better goal for me. It's better than I was at my best as an adult and it's probably easier to reach 11 lbs than it is to reach 13 lbs in 3.5 months. 
If I go over, well then YAY!
And oh my goodness I'm setting this goal during the holiday season.  Time to REALLY focus.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Technical Difficulties

We have been having internet troubles here on the home front. We had a router go bad and it was a few days before we could get another one. Logistically speaking it's difficult to hardwire connect because it's in an awkward spot.  Additionally, we have all been sleeping in the living room for two weeks straight because of the heat and I haven't had any time or privacy at night to write. The baby stays up too late because we're all in one room.  By the time I get her down, Batman wants to go to bed and have a few minutes alone to cuddle and chat.  It's just been a series of incovenient events preventing me from getting here to write my blog.

I have missed it though.  I haven't felt as accountable for my choices because I haven't been here to write about them. So I'm going to list a few good things and a few stumbles:

1. I am down a total of 15lbs from my last known weight prior to this journey.  Some of my clothing is getting loose on me.  I am fortunate to have a variety of smaller sizes of clothing waiting for me while I transition so I won't have to buy new.  That's a good thing because if I lose even 10 more pounds, my pants won't stay up (you can't wear a belt with yoga pants folks.)

2. Roller derby is going well. I have gone to three practices thus far and all have been in 85+ degree heat with high levels of humidity and no air conidtioning.  I've managed to hang in for the majority of the time and haven't left early despite feeling like I was dying.

3. Batman is down a total of 26lbs from his highest weight. I'm proud of his hard work.

Stumbles:

1. I haven't made it to the Farmer's Market in a couple of weeks and as such I have not had as much fresh produce to eat for meals and snacks. I have succumbed to cravings and bought processed foods and have been eating more of those.  Even though I've continued to lose, I can feel the difference in my energy level.
2. I haven't done any exercise outside of roller derby. Seems like it would be enough but it is only two days a week. I want to work out at least 4. The same challenges that have prevented me from blogging have prevented the exercising. We're all stuck in one room so I can't do my videos; I can't breathe in high humidity and heat so no outside activities; and I haven't been invited to the gym.
3. My anxiety and stress levels are really high and I'm having difficulty coping.  I have eaten my feelings a few times and have gotten into arguments with people and have snapped at my kids. I realize that this is highly situational and that, when we are able to put the kids in their own rooms and have some down time and privacy at night, my stress level should go way down. But life is like this and I need to find healthy ways to cope no matter the circumstances.

That's a pretty decent catch up of things I suppose. I need to refocus and set a couple of little goals to work on now that I've made some progress on my initial goals.

Ideas?

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Stress

Batman and I are both stressed. I ate my feelings for two days.  He is still eating his feelings. His stress today is because we are broke and have no money for groceries.
So the best plan is to go eat whatever food we already do have.
Great idea.
Today is just not a good day

PS--missed yesterday because the computer had a virus.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Cranky Pants--Take Them Off!

Today has been a rough day. It started out fine with a good breakfast and a little play date with friends.
It kind of went downhill after that.
Baby Bug is in dire need of clothes for the fall. Like she has a small handful of stuff that's weather appropriate and the right size because suddenly she can't fit the size she's been in for months now (imagine that, she grew!)
I've scoured resale sites and Salvation Army and Goodwill and a handful of rummage sales. Today I went searching at some sales that were posted online. I ventured out about 20 minutes from where I live and had a hard time finding the addresses I'd written down because of stupid construction. I managed to locate one but the others were just too difficult to find because the main way there was blocked off. I headed back toward home and found a handful of others but really nothing for Baby Bug OR Monkey.
It was lunch time and I was starving. I didn't have any portable snacks to bring with me so of course I went through the drive thru. I had a perfectly good lunch waiting for me at home but no I had to grab Taco Bell. I got one burrito and that's it. I hit a couple more sales before picking up Monkey from my parents. Found one shirt each :(
I arrived at my parents to find pizza.  And since I'd only eaten one burrito I was still hungry.
So I ate 3 pieces of crappy pizza, because I was hungry and it was there.
I was so angry at myself for it because it didn't even taste that good. I just ate it because it was there.
We left my parents and I'd managed to eat 1250 calories for lunch. It was 1pm and I had approximately 54 calories left for the day so I KNEW it was completely blown.
Baby Bug didn't nap and was whiney and cranky and I was frustated with myself for the overeating and I was frustrated with my internet for not working.
I overate at dinner too. And then I had crappy food for a snack after. I didn't even log my dinner or snack because I know roughly what it was and I basically negated everything I'd done at derby practice on Wednesday night.
And my mood is terrible. All this processed crappy food and I've been just as cranky as Baby Bug.
LESSON.LEARNED.
Until I put my cranky pants back on again in the future.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Oh Cravings, I have not missed you

I've done fairly well with healthy eating since I started my journey 40+ days ago. I haven't really missed much because I haven't starved myself. I enjoy eating food that fuels my body.
Today....

Today all I could think about was a dozen different delicious fatty foods--chips and dip, a big fat cheeseburger with fries, donuts for breakfast, nachos from Taco Bell. I wanted pop and ice cream.

Thankfully I did not have any of this food in my kitchen. I had half a bag of BBQ chips but I only ate a few with my lunch. I had a Cadbury ice cream bar but I have had one of those every day. None of these things were addressing my cravings.

Batman and I went out to the video store to rent some cheapy 50 cent movies. On the way there I was thinking how close it was to Dairy Queen and how we passed Taco Bell and McDonald's and the old Grand Traverse Pie Company.

What is WRONG with me?

I didn't really want the food I don't think. I think there is something else there. I was lazy all day today too. Maybe that contributed to it? I didn't get up and do anything remotely active. I think I took out the trash and that's about it.

When we got home from the video store I made myself a banana peanut butter smoothie. I went over my calories today but I'm okay with that because at least my snack was healthy and not a bunch of junk that I really didn't need.

Hopefully tomorrow is a better day!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

She Rolls Again!

So it was my first night back at roller derby. I spent the entire day kind of jittery. I'm not sure what the nerves were for entirely. I know that part of me was worried that I just wouldn't be able to keep up.
I mean, it's been two years almost since I've played derby. I've had another baby and gained and lost about 40lbs total. My leg muscles are nowhere near as strong as they were before I had Baby Bug. My core strength? Well that's basically non-existent.
I was nervous also about not knowing anyone, about everything being different than when I was there before. New girls, new rules, new coaches and refs. There are a few people left from before but derby was just so exciting and so new and so...life changing before.  I was trying really hard not to expect that same sort of experience.
I got to practice a little early because I was getting some new to me, harder wheels to make it easier to skate a bit faster. When I got pregnant with Baby Bug I had been trying for a couple of weeks to order new skates from the rink but the manager was never there to help me. I needed new wheels and bearings and wanted new boots and probably a new helmet and wrist guards. Before I ever caught up with him, I found out I was pregnant. 
Everything happens for a reason right?
I had to remember how to put on all my gear. After inspecting it for any tears or damage from all the moves, I proceeded to put both elbow pads on upside down and couldn't figure out how to get my bearings out of my old wheels. 
I was finally geared up and ready to roll. 
It's different now.  I'm back to Fresh Meat status and the way they train new girls is different from what I did before. Not bad, just different.
One of the first things we did after warming up was a time trial to see how many laps we could do in five minutes. This was always my weak point. I would always finish half a lap behind what I needed to pass.  Now they've raised the number needed.  But as we started I found myself flying past the other two girls who went at the same time as me. My legs were burning and my lungs were burning and I got that old familiar tired feeling. But I talked to myself through the whole thing. This was just the first night back, just to see where I was starting and how much work I would have ahead of me.
I finished only 1 lap behind where I left off two years ago. 
I was pretty damn impressed with myself I must say.
The rest of the night we did more stuff I was familiar with and I was happy that most of it came back to me pretty quickly. Good old muscle memory.  I wasn't the best in the group obviously but I wasn't the worst.
And I was able to keep up. I never once fell behind. I did all of the things that the girls who have been there for awhile have been doing.
I was happy too because there were a few girls that I skated with before so that helped me not feel so nervous about being back. I was familiar with them and their skating style and I knew how to partner with them. It felt really really really good.
I can't wait to get back out there again even if I did have a massive headache and desire to puke upon returning home. That's the derby way though--always ready for more!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Meet and Greet

I'm not sure if I went into any sort of detail about the experience Batman and I had with our previous primary care physician.

I met this doctor back in 2000. I was very very sick and on the brink of pneumonia. I was not quite 22 years old and had never chosen my own physician before. This guy was close by and since I hated driving in the winter, I was sold.

He was with me through all of my pregnancies, including the two miscarriages I had. He was with me when I was diagnosed diabetic, when I was hospitalized for a swollen trachea, and when I tore my hamstring at roller derby.

I wanted very badly to have a longterm relationship with a doctor because explaining health history is so daunting.

The thing is....I was always scared to go to him and tell him what I had or had not done.

Over the years I've struggled with weight, depression, anxiety and they have all influenced each other. The more I ate, the more I weighed, the more depressed I became, the more anxious I became, the more I ate, the more....you get the idea.  My depression often made me stop taking my medications and checking my blood sugars. He always scolded me but I just accepted it.

I thought I'd finally be able to please him (I'm paying him to provide me a professional service, yet I was always worried about him being unhappy with me!) when I'd joined derby and lost some weight and my blood sugar was under good control.

It wasn't enough. I lost 20lbs and he said "You still weigh too much" My a1c levels were at 5.8 but I never got that pat on the back or feeling that it was enough.

The last time I went to see him I was discussing the medication that I was taking and how I was having difficulty remembering to take a second pill. I wanted to know if there was a one a day option. When I mentioned that I couldn't remember he said "Now you're 33 years old and you should know better...."

I stopped him and told him not to speak to me like that, he is not my father and I would appreciate it if he would change his attitude. He apologized but that broke us right there. I wouldn't do exactly what he wanted, no matter what it was because I didn't want him to think he could bully me into it.

I know I was ultimately hurting myself in that process but I finally realized that our relationship was not working. I was not getting any better and he wasn't really wanting to help me anymore. I had made multiple requests for blood testing strips for my sugars and he would never give them to me. When I called back in for a refill on my asthma medication that I have been taking for 26 years they said I had to come in for an appointment and asked why I hadn't dropped off blood sugars. I lost it. I told them that I had asked and I couldn't make him do his job and I needed the asthma medication because I needed to breathe. She insinuated that I had not used it correctly and I told her that I was tired of how I was treated there and was thinking of finding a new doctor. She said she'd pass the info along to the doctor.

His response? "I talk to her that way because she is not compliant with her treatment. If she is unhappy with her care perhaps she should find another doctor."  And then he called in my asthma medication.

Find another doctor we did.  It took some research because I was not picking a name out of a book. I asked friends and family who they see and made phone calls. Some I did not call because I did not feel they were a good fit. We finally found a doctor who required a meet and greet before seeing her.

I love this idea. Our insurance requires us to choose a primary care physician and we are unable to switch for 3 months after our selection. I don't want to get stuck with another narcissistic know it all for even three months.

Today was our meet and greet. The doctor was young and vibrant and very thorough in explaining how they operate in their practice. She answered questions for us and it felt like she was really excited to be welcoming new patients. I shared some of my experience with the previous doctor and she assured me that she understood, that she is a mother and that many women our age experience mental health issues and they can handle them well. 

So tomorrow I all our insurance and request her to be listed as our primary doctor and then I can make an appointment.

I'm so ready to get on with this chapter of my journey toward health!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Time Management

Today I wrote out a weekly schedule for the chores and errands I routinely have to do. I included shopping for food and food prep on the schedule.

I did include days that I would have derby practice but I did not include days for strength training or an extra day of cardio.

I've been struggling with time management lately. I know that I need to schedule it in like an appointment and just stick to it. I am certainly hoping that I will be able to manage that much better after K goes back to school. 

School? Ain't nobody got time for that.

I'm pretty sure that's the best worst phrase ever.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Beach Snacks!



Today our family ventured out for what is likely to be one of the last, if not the last, beach trip of this summer. It's been unseasonably cool, save for a couple of weeks (including this one coming up and of course we have no money to make another beach trip so we suffer through the high 80s/high humidity weather in our one air conditioned room....)
I love the beach. I love the water, the sand, the sunshine. I love the people watching. I love seeing my kids and husband having fun. I love getting a tan. I am calm there, even amidst the chaos of splashing children and screaming toddlers and rednecks screamin "Watch this!" (ahhh, home)
What I don't love is the prep of going to the beach. I am always the one making sure everyone has on swimsuits, sunblock, towels and beach blanket are loaded into the car and of course I'm responsible for the food. Most of the time we plan to have an entire meal there, usually a bbq of some kind. There is so much to pack when you're having a bbq.
Today I decided I wanted to keep it simple so we just had snacks.  I packed up some cheddar cheese cubes, some cucumber slices, whole wheat mini bagels and red grapes. Super simple, delicious and healthy.
As we were sitting on the beach watching the various other families with their snacks and meals I sort of didn't recognize myself. The bags of chips, the cans of pop or beer, the candy or chocolatey granola bars--that's what I would normally have packed for us. I remember being in public before with those types of snacks and looking at the families who had the healthy snacks and sort of---wishing maybe? that I could be like them. I'm not sure why I thought I couldn't be. My family ate everything I packed and were more than happy to guzzle their water bottles down as well.
We've changed our eating habits so much, they didn't even mention the difference in the snacks compared to what everyone else ate.
What's your favorite beach snack?

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Veggies

One of the goals I made at the beginning of the year was to add more veggies to my diet. I've been pretty successful.  I have added a few new ones that I didn't eat too often before: sweet potatoes, spinach, carrots, and cucumbers. I mean I ate them before but now they are pretty consistently part of my diet. 
Monkey has always been good about eating veggies but she isn't so awesome at trying new things.  Today I made a new recipe with zucchini from the Farmer's Market.

Cheesy Baked Zucchini Fries
"Kid Approved: Healthy Snacks"--Michigan Nutrition Network

Ingredients:
2 medium size zucchinis (I used one large!)
1/4 cup cracker or bread crumbs
2 tablespoons of grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (if you do not have  balsamic vinegar, use apple cider vinegar, rice vinegar, or any other type of vinegar instead---we used apple cider vinegar!)

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees.
2. Spray or grease a large baking sheet.
3. Peel zucchini and cut in half lengthwise. Cut each half into 8 lengthwise strips.
4. Combine cracker crumbs and cheese on a plate
5. Pour vinegar in a large shallow dish.
6. Dip each zucchini strip into vinegar, cover with crumbs and then place on prepared baking sheet.
7. Bake 5 minutes, turn strips over,and bake until crumbs are lightly browned, about 5 minutes more.

***********
So we tried to fast track this by using a baggie full of crumbs/cheese and putting multiple strips into the vinegar at once. I would not recommend this. Some of the strips got soaked in vinegar and the coating didn't stick as well as it did when I used the plate.  I'd also cook them just a bit longer.

The kids didn't like them very much but one of my besties and I loved them.

What's your favorite veggie?

Friday, August 16, 2013

100 Squats

In preparation to return to derby next week I contacted my old coach who is now training all of the current fresh meat (three of whom are actually former skaters like myself and women I love dearly!) I asked him for exercises to help build endurance. He told me to just come to practice already, that I need sustained workout periods to build it up. He did however challenge me to do 100 squats.
I laughed.
And then I did 100 squats.
Because I'm a roller derby badass like that.
My knees hate me and kinda gave out on me a few times after I was done.
But hey, I did 100 squats.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Be Your Own Hero

If you've ever watched the movie "Whip It" with Drew Berrymore, you recognize that line.

I used to play roller derby. For two years it was my outlet, my support group, my own personal challenge. It was hard. I had never been an athlete, never played an organized sport of any kind, never even fully participated in gym class.

Ironically it was a full year after I saw the movie mentioned above. It didn't even occur to me that it was something I could even do. I was about to turn 31, was extremely overweight and had probably only been on roller skates once since I was around 10 years old. But I enthusiastically joined my first practice and despite bruising my tailbone, pulling my groin and having extremely sore legs, I went back and I was hooked.






For two years I pushed myself--learning to trust my body and the strength in my always muscular legs, enduring endless hours of drills and suicides and throwing myself to the floor ON PURPOSE, getting dozens of bruises and tearing a hamstring. But for two years I had the love and support of everyone around me while I pushed myself, including the most amazing group of women I have ever met (til this day, and I have met some pretty phenomenal women since then!) More than anything it made me push myself in many other aspects of my life. If I could do that, I could do anything. So went the story of lots of women I met--women getting the courage to leave unhealthy relationships, go back to school, get better jobs. Empowerment is more than just a buzz word associated with roller derby--it is the true spirit of roller derby and those who live it know this.

Roller derby was the one thing I've ever done JUST FOR ME. For my body, for my mind, for my well-being.

I had to leave when I got pregnant with Baby Bug and had fully intended to go back when she was 3 months old. I told Batman "Don't let me quit this. I need it in my life." Baby Bug had a pretty rocky start to life and I was not able to go back as anticipated. Then finances got in the way and then time. 

Now I have the time but not the money. Isn't that always the story?

Tonight the skating rink that hosts our derby league had free open skating in celebration of the annual Back to the Bricks car cruise. I have gone every year since 2010, even last year. I ran into some of the women I skated with and a couple of new faces.

When I saw those women, when I opened my skate bag--I just had this overwhelming feeling of being home. I belong there, with those women, on those skates, pushing myself to be better. 

So I am going to go back. I can't afford to pay dues so I'm going back as a referee--but I still get the experience, the workout, the derby love.

And I get something just for ME. That's just as much a part of this journey as anything else is.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

One Month!

I've been 34 for one month.

One month ago today I decided to take back my body.

It doesn't feel like it's been that long. And I have to say it doesn't feel like it's been that difficult this time. It feels more normal than I ever anticipated.

I don't think often about junk foods really. I did think about some today but the thoughts were fleeting. I wanted something salty and cheesy but then I just did something else for awhile and the craving went away. It wasn't even that strong of a craving.

I am watching Extreme Weight Loss and they are showing all of the junk food that this poor guy is being surrounded by--donuts, pizza, wings, chili cheese dogs, sausage. It didn't affect me the same way at all. I thought the donuts looked good but then I thought about how bad it would be for my body and that thought passed just as quickly as it came.

I WANT to be better. I have been checking my blood sugar every day. It's not pretty at all. It makes me sad and nervous to see those high numbers on the screen. But I am going to the doctor next week and hopefully it's a good fit, hopefully she gives me some medications I can take.

I also get to be weighed soon.  I have no idea if I have lost any weight.

I took some pictures to share.
 


The side view looks a little smaller I think? Not sure. I should do a side by side.
 
Now it's time for bed. 11 more months to go! 



Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Do the Achy Leg

Last night at the gym I tried out the Arc Trainer. I had never even really heard of this piece of workout equipment but my workout buddy assured me that I would get a good workout on this. She did not lie. It felt really awkward at first--I couldn't tell if I was going forward or backwards (I guess I really wasn't--more of an up and down motion I think??) It was one of those workouts that I knew I'd be feeling the next day and maybe the day after that.
I was not wrong.
My calves are achy today as are my feet. I know this is in part because I do not have the correct footwear.
I went for a walk tonight and I wasn't walking very fast but my legs were aching and I only did 1 3/4 mile instead of 2 1/2 miles like I normally do. I was in pain.
I feel frustrated because I don't really know what to do at this point.
I do not yet have the money for new shoes and may not have it until next month. I can't go a whole month without working out, but I can't stand the pain in my feet, legs and back.
Anyone have suggestions of good workouts I can do that don't involve my feet? I'm still going to walk, I need the fresh air and peace of mind.
Otherwise my only cardio will consist of doing the Achy Leg.

Monday, August 12, 2013

It Feels Good

Lots of things feel good.
I'm specifically referencing self care though.
Not THAT kind of self care.
I don't know about the rest of you but I find myself taking care if everyone else all the time and rarely taking care of me.
Since I've started this journey almost a month ago I've been focusing more on taking care of myself-eating well, moving more, doing things I like to do. I've been reading books, going to the gym, cooking and trying new recipes.
It's funny because I stopped working to focus more on caring for my kids but ended up taking more care of myself as well. Being home isn't a sacrifice after all.
It feels good!