Weight loss support with a spiritual element. I will keep you posted on my journey in the hopes that you will join me in becoming the person God wants you to be. Don't worry about being religious. Come as you are.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Book Review Part 2

First, Yes, Michelle, it's all from the book and here is some more. Remember these are my underlinings as I read it in my Kindle.

I always overate when I was given big servings.

Surprisingly, I didn't miss candy and chips and cookies that much. Once I stopped eating them I stopped craving them.

This wasn't a "diet", it was a "lifestyle change." I didn't even know what the word "diet" meant anymore Being on a diet implies that you eventually will go off the diet. I had decided not to do anything that I was not prepared to do for the rest of my life.

I was regulating my diet of food for the day, but I would never be able to stop without gaining back the weight. I wanted to lose the weight only once. I didn't want to be a dieting Sisyphus, burning calories rolling a gigantic donut up a hill only to eat it at the top, repeating the same task eternally.

I was doing a lot of things I didn't particularly want to do. I suppose that might be the definition of discipline.

I had to override my desire to do what I wanted in the short term to get what I wanted in the long term.

There was a battle raging between two parts of myself, Current Me and Future Me. Current Me was gung-ho about losing weight, eating healthy, and eschewing the elevator in favor of the stairs. Future Me would think about how close the convenience store was and how easy it would be to buy a bag of Reese's Pieces without anyone's knowing. I hated that bitch. Those two girls were locked in an endless boxing match with an infinite set of rounds.

Being perfect was way too exhausting. I'd had my ice cream. I'd enjoyed it. My perfect dieting streak was broken. Now I'd just get back on track and make sure this didn't become a habit.

I still resented the fact that I had to bother with any of this. I'd never dieted because I wanted eating to be simple. This was complicated. I felt ridiculous counting out exactly thirty pistachios for my mid-afternoon snack. If I counted out twenty-nine by mistake, was I going to chewing on the plastic bag in ravenous hunger before lunch? If I counted out thirty-one was I doomed to a life of obesity? I wished I could instinctively eat whatever I wanted without worrying, but the last time I'd done that I'd gained 200 pounds.

You wouldn't care about what other people think of you if you knew how infrequently they do.

I had an amazing ability to rationalize things I knew I shouldn't be doing.

If I had been prepared enough to bring breakfast, or if I'd had time before work to buy something to eat, I would never have gone to the vending machine in the first place. It was a chain reaction that started in the morning when I skipped breakfast and ended with a three-car pileup in front of the vending machine. The only real crash was the very real sugar crash I experienced an hour later.

I decided I wouldn't bring any food into the house unless I was prepared to eat it.

Or I could attempt to accept the fact that it was okay to feel alone or sad sometimes and that I didn't need to bury my face in a bowl of pudding to suffocate the feelings.

Each time I told myself I wouldn't eat the whole thing, and then I'd do it anyway.

Normally my eating habits were similar to the action of the conveyor belt in the checkout line of the grocery store.

Focusing on the 5 percent that I screwed up was like getting upset that I didn't have a perfect SAT score. I couldn't change the past, and I didn't live in the future. I could control only the here and now.

I wasn't a 100 percent perfect dieter. No one was. If I fell out of bed, I wouldn't call myself a failure at sleeping.

My life had been spent trying not to think about my fat, part of my unsuccessful life philosophy that if you ignored something it would go away.

It was practically impossible to lose weight every single week. There was no reason to get hysterical about it.

It was important for them to know that you could win the war and still lose some battles.

I felt in control of my transformation.

One reason I wanted to lose weight was because I did care about my looks and I did care about what people thought. I wanted to be above all that shallow nonsense. But I wasn't immune to looks discrimination myself.

There is no secret. Weight loss was a personal decision requiring a lot of commitment and work, as serious as deciding to get married or moving to another city for a new job.

Our world was making it easier to become a fat person. If you didn't actively adjust your environment and habits to account for that, you could end up getting fat, no deep-seated psychological issues with food required.

Keeping it off was far more difficult that losing it.

Disadvantages weren't an excuse, just an explanation. "Because it's hard" wasn't a good reason not to at least try to do something. It was important to pave the path of least resistance, to make it as easy as possible for you to live a healthy lifestyle.

People waited for motivation to find them, but they needed to go out and find motivation.

Permanent probation. I'll be making weekly check-ins with my parole officer forever. His office is my bathroom floor and his face displays three numbers.

I don't think I'm going to get fat again, but who ever plans to gain back the weight?

I haven't been cured of obesity, I'm just in remission. There is no fat vaccine.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Book Review

This is a very funny book and well worth reading. Here are my highlights from my kindle.

It was silly to wait for someone to fix me. I needed to fix myself. I knew what my problem was. I could no longer buy pants at the fat-girl store; and now, a doctor was offering weight-loss surgery as a serious option.

A commercial for weight-loss surgery used to air frequently on my television. The sales pitch didn't focus on becoming thin but instead sold you the fabulous new life you would have once you became thin. The commercials sold you hope. You wouldn't just be thin; you would finally be happy and loved.

I believed people shouldn't hate themselves for being overweight, but I didn't think they should have to enjoy it either. I had accepted that I was fat, I just couldn't like being fat. It wasn't because I hated myself, an accusation some fat-acceptance members frequently threw at dieters. I wanted lose weight because I loved myself and I knew I deserved better.

The very act of believing you couldn't do something made it less likely that you could. It was a self-fulfilling prophecy.

It must have been hard for my family to see me get so big, and not just because I took up more space on the couch when we were watching TV. If I were worried about me, they must have been too, but I didn't want to talk about it. Talking about something made it real. I had now become the fattest person in the family, but I kept the topic off-limits.

I never planned what I was going to eat until I was hungry, which was like waiting until I was drunk to start driving.

More later--got to go to step aerobics--

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


Why do we quit doing what works? Hmmmm?

My husband has always had trouble with leg cramps at night. He will take potassium, black strap  molasses, eat bananas and they clear up. He was complaining to me that his legs were cramping again and I asked him if he had still been doing those things and he said he hadn't been. I asked him why and he told me because his legs stopped cramping.  HELLO????  BIG RED TRUCK!

I've always had trouble with fat on my butt. The cure for that is to eat differently and move more. When the fat is gone, I've gone back to eating what I want and moving less and the fat is back. I quit doing what worked. I've done this a few times. Not much of a learning curve going on here.

Some of us in the Challenge have done some self-sabotaging lately. Myself included.  I kind of had an excuse because I was out of town but I could have done better at handling the situation. I have not had trouble getting back with it for which I am extremely thankful. It just burns my cookies when the scale shows no loss or a small gain. I never think I deserve it. Even if I do deserve it I don't think the gain should have been that much. My thoughts start going like - it's going to be another whole week before I get to see some progress here. I DON'T WANT TO WAIT THAT LONG. It's like being in limbo for a whole week without that positive reinforcement. I don't care about non-scale victories. I want the number to always be lower than the one before it. I'm such a whiner.

We don't have to enjoy the process. There are some nice things along the way which keeps us going. I didn't always enjoy studying but I did enjoy the good grades. I don't always enjoy my job but I do like the paycheck. I don't like pulling weeds but I do enjoy a yard that receives compliments. We have to do what's necessary to get the results we want. We have to continue to do those things if we want the results to continue.

Did I feel sorry for my husband because his leg cramps returned?  No. He deserved it.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Been Thinkin'

I have been mulling over in my mind what might be the possible reasons for the 1.5 lb. gain. I have come to a couple of conclusions:

Remember the two packs of peanuts per day for lunch - I always have the dry roasted unsalted ones at home. These were salted and had a lot of sodium. All of the fast food things were probably high in sodium. I take blood pressure medication and so watch salt at home so my body must have really sucked up the water in response to this.

I sat in the armored van anywhere from 8 - 14 hours per day all week - not a real calorie burner.

A couple of you (Natasha was one, I forget (sorry) who the other one was) commented that when you lost with low-carb it didn't take much to put weight back on. I got to thinking about how thirsty carbs can make us. I had several sandwiches last week with a bun (of course). I would love for more fast food chains to offer whole grain buns. When our bodies adapt to one way of nutrition and we throw it a curve, the reaction can be more of a bounce than if we had been eating those things all along I wonder. Al over at Almost Gastric Bypass told a humorous description of an experience at a store after eating some things his system was not used to (I think bacon was one of the culprits) and others had some similar stories. It gave new meaning to "the trots".

It makes me wonder if we should add back many carbs at all other than the fruit/vegetable kind. There are good carbs and bad carbs and I plan to educate myself a little more in this regard. The diet plans that rely on the glycemic index make use of this information.

Anyway, I would be interested in your thoughts. Adding back for maintenance might be an easier process if we arm ourselves with this information.

Week 3 - STS Challenge

I weighed 213.5 this morning - boo hoo. My weight is up 1.5 pounds from last week.

The week in Lexington with no exercise and eating out for two meals per day didn't help my efforts. My total loss for the first three weeks is at 9.5 lb. so I am going to take that as an  average of a little over 3 lb. per week and carry on.

Hope everyone's week was better than mine. Next week's weigh in will be better.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Dreamer? Doubter?

Dreams are Whispers from the Soul:

There are many different aspects that live inside of us and two of them I respectfully dubbed the Dreamer and the Doubter. When it comes to pursuing our dreams, the Dreamer is often gung ho while the Doubter can provide a laundry list of concerns and issues.

From:  Simple Truths

Do we begin as a dreamer and then slowly morph into a doubter? What makes dreams come true? If a dream comes true, what part did we play? If doubts arise, what part did we play? We would probably agree that we did play a big part in both of these outcomes.

Michelanglo said:

The greater danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that our aim is too low and we hit it.

Maybe we are afraid to dream in the first place? After the dream do we even try very hard? Have you ever heard of a pipe dream? Those dreams just go up in smoke. Do you know where the term "Doubting Thomas" came from? I'll let you look that one up.

If a dream is a whisper from our souls, will we listen? Our dreams are what we were meant to be, our lives are what we settle for. Is what we've settled for what we really want? If we don't want it, why don't we exchange it? Have you ever taken something back to the store because you decided you didn't want it? We didn't want it so we got rid of it, exchanged it, took it back. Our lives aren't quite that easy to exchange though are they? It takes a little more effort and it begs the question, "If we don't want this weight, why do we keep it?" We choose to keep it each time we stray off our eating plan. We choose to keep it each time we binge. We choose to keep it because we don't want to be slim badly enough. We want to eat what we want when we want - we want that more. Yes, we can stay with a plan for a time but then we each have our own little game we play, our own little set of lies that work on us. After this long, why do they still work? Are we that gullible? No. We need those games and lies so that we can preserve our self-esteem because there really is a good reason why we haven't followed through yet again, isn't there? In the back of our minds is something like, "Aha, there's a party so I can't be expected to stay with my eating plan." or  "The family reunion is coming up and my cousin always brings that cake that is to die for so since it will be a whole year before I get any of that again, I better have some. After all, her feelings will be hurt if I don't eat some of it." Is it "feed a fever, starve a cold" or "feed a cold, starve a fever"? Better be safe and keep my strength up.

Did you know that when we work out and get all heated up we may be killing virus/bacteria that we have contracted because the heat of our bodies can kill them? That is the purpose of a fever. The body raises its temperature to kill invading organisms. Now I know that there is a limit on how high a fever should be allowed to go and remain but very often the fever goes down. Just an FYI.

Saturday, June 25, 2011


I remember when I was a kid that I had gone barefoot so much that the soles of my feet toughened up and I could walk on gravel and it didn't hurt. Now I do this tippy toe thing and scrunch up my shoulders (like that's going to help), and do this gasping eech, outch, ootch thing as I go - it's pretty pathetic really.

Have we tried so many ways and so many times to lose weight that we are calloused? We can't feel like we should. It's hard to try yet again because we have tippy toed around getting serious but never really got serious. We are calloused - it is hard to feel the urgency that we should be feeling about this. When we started this Challenge there were some who messed up the first week. Some struggled the second week. If we keep up this cycle will the callouses be so thick nothing will work and we will just quit trying altogether? Why put ourselves through walking on this gravel?

We are nearly  into the fourth week now. After this next week we are 33% through the Challenge. How many have quit? Should these people discipline themselves to finish? There are 9 weeks left - make a new set of goals and finish this. In 9 weeks great progress can be made. We can all still be slimmer this summer even if we have been taking the scenic route.

Got back home last night, got the things out of the car, walked around the yard and surveyed the amount of work I have to do. I must go to the grocery store and get things for the week. There's a bunch of lettuce in the garden so I must pick that and get it all rinsed in the salad spinner. By the way, if you don't have a salad spinner GET ONE. I love it. Salad lasts so much longer  when it has been rinsed and then all the extra water spun out of it. I also have to pick up my sewing machine as I left it to be cleaned while I was gone. I am covering service calls tomorrow for ATM's so hopefully there will be none. The alumni banquet is tomorrow night and a local Garden Tour is on Sunday. The friends I go with always go out to eat but I can get a salad. Sunday is the day also a friend and I will be taking some Sunday School kids to the local nursing home. We always do that on the last Sunday of the month. Can you believe it will soon be July? It's summer officially now so the days will gradually shorten. :-(

I don't know what to expect on Monday but whatever. The exercise was non-existent last week. I did get the water in each day. I don't think I did too badly on the carbs and calories but it's hard to know. This weigh in may not be as stellar as the first two.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Day 4 , Lexington, Kentucky

Today wasn't quite as bad as yesterday - 10 hours rather than 14. Guess what I had for breakfast - yes - that's it - protein bar. It just occurred to me that I had a grilled chicken sandwich for lunch and again for supper. Also had my peanuts of course. Pretty boring menu for sure. I will eat in a little more interesting manner when I get home - you can bet it won't be grilled chicken sandwiches.

I have a Kindle and I love that thing. The only negative I have found is that you can't loan your books to others when you are done reading them. The positives far outweigh the negatives - one of which I am going to demonstrate in a minute. I got a holder that has a little pop up light on it - great for when it's dark or you don't want to keep someone awake. It is easy to lay in bed and read without fumbling to keep the book open at the right place. The kindle keeps track of where you stopped reading so that when you open that book back up you are right where you left off. There aren't stacks of books all over the place gathering dust. It is so portable - when you are going to be sitting in a waiting room, take it. You will have such a variety of books to read. I downloaded many of my books for just 99 cents. Get one!!

OK - I have finished reading Life Without Ed - (Ed stands for eating disorder) - get that too. As you read your Kindle you can underline meaningful parts and then there is an option on the menu where you can just read what you underlined - is that neat or what? There is even a choice where you can read the most popular underlinings.

I thought I would share with you some of my underlinings. I underline so much. I underline and write in my Bible. I highlight and underline and write in the margins of books. I could probably resell them for more if I would quit that but I just have to underline things that stand out to me. Here are some of my underlinings -

1.  This may seem strange, but I am not going to try to explain eating disorders in this book. When I first entered into recovery, I made the mistake of believing that I could "think" my eating disorder away. I read every book on the subject.

2.  Eating disorders are about constant self-criticism, loss of self-esteem, and unrelenting perfectionism.

3.  No book or program is going to simply take away your eating disorder. To recover from an eating disorder, you are going to have to eat, and you are going to have to stop bingeing and purging. And you are going to have to separate yourself from Ed and meet yourself all over again--or possibly for the first time.Recovery is about a new outlook on life. It is about little changes that lead to big changes. Changes that last take time. So do your best to practice patience (remember Chris's post?)

4.  I have heard it said about some things that "From the outside looking in you can't understand it. From the inside looking out, you can't explain it." This is a wonderful description of an eating disorder. People who do not have an eating disorder cannot possibly inderstand it. They are not expected to explain it any more than those of us with eating disorders are able to explain it.

5.  People don't have to understand us. We just need them to believe us. If I tell my mom that I "feel fat," I do not need her to convince me that I am not fat. Instead, I just need her to believe that I really do feel fat. She does not understand what that feels like, but she believes me. That's what I need.

6.  "Direction is important, not destination." Focus on the right path. If you stay pointed in the right direction, you do not have to worry about arriving at the proper place. By choosing to read this book, you are journeying in the right direction. Do not worry if you make wrong turns along the way. I have learned that each wrong turn is a valuable lesson as long as I keep walking.

7.  The ultimate goal is to disagree with and disobey Ed.

8.  Slowly, I am replaciang perfectionism with persistence. After all, in recovery and life it is persistence that really pays off. Forget about perfection.

9.  Practice makes practice. Take what you learn from each holiday with you to the next holiday.

10.  Favorite grocery store game--analyzing the items in every other person's grocery cart.

11.  Food is something I am going to have to face at least three times a day for the rest of my life. And I am not perfect. But one really bad day does not mean that I am hopeless and back at square one with my eating disorder. Olympic ice skaters fall in their quest for the gold. Heisman Trophy winners throw interceptions. Professional singers forget the words. And people with eating disorders sometimes slip back into an old pattern. But all of these individuals just pick themselves back up and do the next right thing. The ice skater makes the next jump. The football player throws the next pass. The singer finishes the song. And I am going to eat breakfast.

12.  The next time I start having Ed thoughts, I need to slow down and breathe. I need to remember what happens when I act too quickly and fail to separate myself from Ed. I need to remember that Ed makes me feel extremely agitated and out of control.

There's a sampling of my underlinings in my Kindle on this book. I have taken my Kindle with me all week and while Jarrod has been replenishing the ATM I have been reading my Kindle.

I am going to be loaded up in the morning so that I can leave to go home directly from work.

Start Your Day Right, Start Your Life Now! | Mindfulness and Psychotherapy

Start Your Day Right, Start Your Life Now! Mindfulness and Psychotherapy

Since I don't have time to blog like I want to (I promise when I get back home, I will do better) I am going to direct you to something I think we can all use to have an "attitude of gratitude".

I am tired this morning because of the day I had yesterday. Sitting in that armored van all day makes me stiff and then my right foot and leg cramps at night because there is no cruise control on that armored beast and it seems we drive all over the state. Today and tomorrow and yippee - I'm on my way back north to my flowers (and undoubtedly weeds I can probably use for shade), my hubby, and the cat. We have some friends who garden with us and they visit 2 or 3 times a week. I still have my mom - she's 84 - and I try to spend time with her and call her often. I also have a sister (I've directed you to her blog before- it's jensgyrations on my blog list) and two brothers and we are all within a local phone call. I cannot complain about my in-laws; they have always treated me like part of their own families. I always feel sorry for those whose in-laws are difficult; mine are great.

Being away from home and by myself is a good way to cause reflection and appreciation for "HOME" - that word carries so much meaning. Hopefully for you it's pretty much good. If we work on ourselves and the love it can often cause others to change as well. I am reading Emmet Fox - I recommend you visit Amazon and read the descriptions of some of his work. I have had several "aha" moments while reading what he has written. Epiphanies have happened and I love when that light bulb comes on and some new realization of the truth happens.

Don't let anyone steal your joy today. Joy is different from happiness. Joy is that inner light that carries us through difficult days and through our interactions with difficult people. Don't accept their unhappiness but have a soft answer in return. We too often internalize anger that comes from others and return the same. "A soft answer turns away wrath".

Have a blessed day.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day 3, Lexington. KY

Today was a 14 - hour day. Whew!  From 7 this morning until 9 p.m. tonight. I started out with my protein food bar then was pretty hungry and knew the 2 pkg. of peanuts wasn't going to do it - we stopped to replenish an ATM at a gas station and I got a cheeseburger. It was so good. I had my peanuts this afternoon and was going to have Chick-fil-A for supper but was tired and came back to the room to warm up my coffee and have an Atkins Shake.

The guy I drove to replenish ATM's today was pretty skinny. He brought a Mountain Dew and a partial bag of chips for breakfast. This bag of chips was the individual size - can you believe he opened that maybe last night and didn't finish it? He would just take a few and eat them and then close the bag again. He would take just one sip or two from the Mountain Dew at a time and put the lid back on it. I can gulp a drink until I am out of breath. Where do they find these people?

I am going to be ready to go home on Friday. I hope they don't ask me to work here next week.

Hope all is well with everyone.

A Deliberate Life: patience and purpose

A Deliberate Life: patience and purpose

If you don't already read Chris, you don't want to miss this one. She always opens up when she writes and this post will inspire you to be better than you are.

Home Run Chris!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Day 2 in Lexington, Kentucky

Today was a longer day. My alarm did go off this morning. I still had the food bar for breakfast and the 2 pkg. of peanuts for lunch. I went to Panera Bread and got a salad and chose an apple for the side that came with it. It was pretty good and expensive. The salads from Subway have more veggies - I just wanted a change. There is Chick-fil-et here. I have never been there. Don't know if everything is deep fried or not - I can get on their web site and check. Did you know that Chick-fil-et and Hobby Lobby are both closed on Sunday to observe the Sabbath?

Amber - the Ezekiel bread is already baked and in the freezer section. You just have to thaw it out. Keep it in the frig. - no preservatives.

Today is the first day of summer and we are in a new digit if you notice the counter. On Sunday we will be 25% done with the Challenge. My how time flies when you are having fun.

Someone else asked about my food. If you go back to the beginning of the Challenge I was posting what I ate for a few days if you want to refer to that.

Keep on keepin' on!

How I Am Doing It

Carrie asked about my food plan for the low carb/counting calories thing that is working so well for me. As an aside I almost said, "that seems to be working for me". I backed up and reworded the weasel expression. I thought about giving myself a way out in case I would slip and fall.

Anyway, as a caution, I have done low carb before and failed because I got into the mindset that I could eat all I wanted if it was low carb. Many foods like hard boiled eggs have basically no carbs as does cheese and lean meat; I was eating a lot because I was just counting carbs. These foods still have calories in them so I write down the carbs and the calories(I have been staying between 50 and 75 carbs per day and under 1500 calories). Without the carbs there is no panic when hungry, no anxiety, no craving; hunger is an empty, hollow feeling - carbs cause higher blood sugar quickly and when the bottom falls out; it was always hard to bear that gnawing hunger.

The first thing that went was the refined sugar products - no cookies, cake, candy - you know what I mean. There are so many great sugar free products on the market and even though fruit must be eaten in lesser amounts because of the carbs we must remember that it is low carb not no carb. I was talking to the owner of the quilt shop where I go about how I was losing weight and the first thing she said was "I can't give up my fruit" - well, yes you can give up what you need to to lose weight if you want to badly enough. Bananas are a high carb fruit and carrots are a higher carb vegetable. There are starchy vegetables like corn, peas, and lima beans. You just have to count them. So that's what I did with sugar.

Next to be revised was starches. This was a more difficult area to overhaul because we are a nation of the sandwich. There is a product called Ezekiel bread that I used for a time because one of my favorite breakfasts was toast with some peanut butter on it and sugar-free syrup on it (yum).  This bread is gluten free and is made with sprouted grains rather than flour and is in the freezer section. When determining carbs remember when you look at total carbs on the label you subtract the dietary fiber grams and the sugar alcohol grams from the total carbs because they do not affect blood sugar in any appreciable amount. I have switched to those slimwich buns for a sandwich when I have one.

Several things I like is the Quest  Protein Bar. You can find them at questproteinbar.com - I usually have these for breakfast through the week because I am usually on the way out the door to do my route or go to my step aerobics class. Since I am in Lexington this week, they are a convenient, portable breakfast.

I usually always have hard boiled eggs on hand and things like string cheese and fresh vegetables- you can make a killer salad on this food plan and have real dressing as well. I love the soy burgers - we have Boca brand and Morning Star Farms brand in this area - you can put a slice of cheese, pickles, there is a low sugar ketchup available - on a slimwich is a great lunch. I like Fiber One yogurt for a dessert - remember to subtract fiber grams from carb grams on label. There are some yummy sugar free puddings for dessert as well. A good lunch is 1/2 c. of  cottage cheese (not low fat or fat free), a hard boiled egg, and
green beans that are seasoned with onion and even some bacon for seasoning. I use Paula Dean's kitchen seasoning - she mixes 1 c. salt with 1/4 c. pepper and 1/4 c. garlic powder - it's great. When out the Arby's junior roast beef sandwich works - go to the web site for the carbs (I forget - I'm in the motel room). Chicken breasts, lean ham, lean beef - there are many good protein sources that will keep you from getting hungry as your blood sugar will not fall as quickly as when eating so many carbs. I keep the Atkins shakes on hand. While I am not following Atkins the products are helpful. The first week of Atkins was too much for me. I was tired, bad breath, dry mouth - couldn't exercise or be around people much  :-)

Get on the internet for tons of low carb recipes. You can buy books with carb and calorie counts for foods.

You MUST get in the 10 waters. There is an ash left behind when your body burns fat for fuel. This ash goes through your kidneys. The water keeps it cleared.

Just keep track and I think you will be very pleased with your success. Just remember we can't have our cake and eat it too. We cannot eat all we want and lose weight. It doesn't work like that. Let me know if I can help you any further.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Day 1 in Lexington, Kentucky

Started off behind - I had the a..m. and p.m. correct for the time on my clock but not on the alarm part so it didn't go off and I had to jump up out of bed, had no time to make coffee, and flew out the door and ate one of my protein bars on the way to work. I took water so had 6 of my 10 waters while on the route. For lunch I had two of those little bags of peanuts that you can buy for 2/$1 (I do that a lot, if the peanut crop ever fails, I'm dead). I got a subway salad on the way back to the motel and that was supper. If I get hungry later I brought some Atkins Shakes with me.

A thought occurred to me as I was driving. My meal allowance is $20 - $25 per day. There was a time when I would have felt like I had to spend all of that to buy food whether I wanted it or not. Today's allowance would include the two cases of water I bought to drink and for coffee, the $1 for the peanuts, and the $6.36 for the subway salad. The water was about $8. It does not bother me a bit that I have about $10 left and it will be more left tomorrow because there won't be the $8 for water.

We had to stop and pick up money from two different places - Garda and Brink's. At Garda Jarrod (the guy I drove who replenishes the ATM's) got out and got a pump shotgun to stand guard while I backed the armored van into the Garda garage. There was another man inside the garage with a big shotgun. The security at Brink's was not quite at that level but Jarrod has a big weapon that makes my 38 look like a squirt gun. We almost had $2,000,000 in the van.

I brought some DVD's for exercise but there is about 0 floor space in this room.

Hope everyone is experiencing success. This is a tough week and slip-ups can start to snowball on us - remember to  HALT!!

Don't get too     hungry
Don't get too     angry
Don't get too     lonely
Don't get too     tired

Remember the water and the exercise and the journaling (haven't I heard that somewhere before?)

I am considering starting another blog about religion and politics. Two taboo subjects. I have slipped and addressed some issues here so I decided to have a blog dedicated to that because these are two hot button topics and I think we need to stick to weight loss and support here.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sunday, June 19, STS Weigh In

I weighed 212 this morning for a 3.5 lb. loss this week. My total loss is 11 pounds. I am over halfway to my goal. I didn't think at the beginning when I started at 223 that I would be able to get below 200 but now it is very possible, even probable.

My weekly goals have been met:  10 waters/day, 50-75 carbs/day, exercise 3 - 5 times/week, calories have been below 1500 per day. Counting carbs and calories works for me. I have not been so hungry I can't stand it because with low carb, there is a lot more protein in the diet. Protein is digested more slowly so it's not so much I've restricted calories as I have been able to stick to the plan because hunger is not so uncomfortable.

I have found that the third week is when it starts to get tough because the new has worn off and we are down into the fat that has been around for a while and is really comfortable right where it is. We have lost the water weight that always occurs at first and the stash of glycogen stored in the liver is pretty much gone. We are now requiring our bodies to use stored fat because we are eating fewer calories than is stored for ready use. It can be uncomfortable, even threatening at times. If there has been success these first two weeks, it is time to be ever more vigilant about meeting the goals set at the beginning. If the commitment has not been there, it's time to decide that there's no better time than the present to get serious.

I have weighed a day early because of leaving this evening for Lexington for the week. This week will truly be a test of resourcefulness in meeting my goals. I'm not going to use the excuse that if I can't be perfect I might as well take the week off.

Hope all of you are experiencing success with your goals.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Saturday, June 18, STS

Family Reunion today. Carbs/Calories are hard to determine. So here is what I do know:

Quest protein bar for breakfast  230 cal.   4 carbs
Handful of peanuts for supper    200          4
Fiber 1 yogurt for supper             50          8

Reunion food:

Deviled eggs (4 halves) that I made in low carb fashion but these are pretty low carb anyway
Cauliflower salad - also a low carb recipe that I made where you make a potato salad but use cauliflower rather than potatoes
8 party meatballs

that's it - no dessert of any kind - not even fruit  I had had 480 calories  and 16 carbs aside from the reunion so I think I still did OK. I will be weighing in the morning rather than on Monday because I will be leaving to spend the week in Lexington, KY, driving an armored truck to fill in.

Posting will be light next week - probably just reporting on calories and carb intake. I can take my protein bars with me that I always have for breakfast and will buy a case of water. I will be eating out the other two meals. I can get a great salad at Subway for lunch. Any ideas for supper? I just figure I'll go to a restaurant and order some lean meat and some hot vegetables and a side salad.

Take care.

Boogey Man

Remember when you were a little kid (I can't remember ever being little, but I think I was maybe) and you were afraid there was a monster under your bed or in the closet? I would lie really still so that monster wouldn't know I was there. This was real to me at the time but now seems pretty silly.

What monster is it that makes us afraid of being successful at weight loss and maintenance? What protection is the extra weight providing? There are only two emotions:  love and fear. We are born with only two fears: the fear of falling and the fear of loud noises. All the rest of our fears have been learned.

I read a story of Gandhi. He was out sitting quietly in a remote area by a road when a band of robbers approached him. Of course he only wore that loin cloth and maybe some sandals. This band of robbers approached him in a threatening manner and he asked them what they were afraid of. The leader was somewhat taken aback when Gandhi told him that they must be afraid of something because they were carrying weapons. This group of men became followers of Gandhi and no longer carried weapons.

Gandhi was at peace; he didn't need a weapon because he feared nothing. He had love for himself and his fellow man.

What weapons have we used against ourselves because we were afraid the food wouldn't be there later? Have you ever eaten so you wouldn't get hungry? "Better eat now; we may not be able to eat later." Do we have food in the car? Do we take food with us "just in case"? Have we ever played the airplane game to get a child to eat food that child didn't want? Have we ever put the nipple back in the child's mouth to get that last ounce in even though the child is giving all kinds of cues he/she is full? Do we use food as a reward or a punishment? How has food become such a monster? Why do we use food as a weapon? Death by knife and fork.

It makes me mad at myself that I have let food become such an idol. Should we be angry that food and eating is robbing us of our very life and health? How concerned are we that we have been letting food control us? I have told the story in an earlier post about standing in the hall between classes with one of our English teachers and we were talking about people who smoke, drink too much, eat too much, on and on. He said he thought the reason these people didn't buckle down is that they thought "It won't be today". It won't be today we are diagnosed with diabetes. It won't be today that cancer strikes. I have never forgotten that because it is so true. I still weigh too much but somehow we fool ourselves with the thought that losing weight is harder than quitting smoking because we have to eat something while smokers can stay completely away from tobacco. Of course, this gives us permission to continue like we are. We can't say anything about a drug addict, a smoker, an alcoholic, etc., as long as we remain too heavy.

I guess I'm done now. Check under your bed tonight; get rid of that monster (especially if he has a weapon). There will be nothing to be afraid of then.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Friday, June 17, STS

1425 calories   64 carbs  10 waters  no exercise today

I learned today that I will be in Lexington, KY, all next week to fill in for someone driving the armored truck for someone replenishing ATM's. I will be leaving Sunday night so will weigh in on Sunday morning rather than Monday. This was somewhat unexpected and I immediately wanted to eat. I have done this long enough now to know this was a reaction to plans being changed for the entire week. It will be hard to exercise, I will be eating out a lot, and sitting in a truck all day while someone goes in to the ATM. I will be alone in the evenings in a motel room. This should be fun.  :-(

Tomorrow is a family reunion and you know how you can never find anything worth eating  :-) I am fixing food to take that is OK for low carb. Knowing that I will be weighing in the next morning will motivate me to do the right thing.

Hope everyone is experiencing continued success.

Comfort Zone

"You will either step forward into growth, or you will step back into safety."

Abraham Maslow

Maslow also authored the hierarchy of needs. They are:

1. Biological and Physiological needs - air, food, drink, shelter, warmth, sex, sleep, etc.
2. Safety needs - protection from elements, security, order, law, limits, stability, etc.
3. Belonging and Love needs - work group, family, affection, relationships, etc.
4. Esteem needs - self-esteem, achievement, mastery, independence, status, dominance, prestige, managerial responsibility, etc.
5. Self-Actualization needs - realizing personal potential, self-fulfillment, seeking personal growth and peak experiences.

Safety. Is that a place without anything new or without anything that makes us stretch or reach a bit? No threats. No challenges. Same ole, same ole. Nothing new, just a different day. While there are few challenges, there is also little in the way of  improvement, progress, growth. When we step forward into growth we step out of our comfort zone and there is risk involved.

What if we join a Challenge and can't finish? Better boof it up now and get it over with. What if we go back to school and can't make the grades? Better not sign up and then waste the money. What if we sign up for a gym membership and then don't go? Better stay home.

Maslow's theory is that each level must be met and achieved or the person cannot move on to the next level; they are stuck. For example, someone who doesn't have enough to eat isn't too concerned about achieving self-esteem. The ultimate is self-actualization which is being our very best and becoming what we are capable of becoming. Most people get hung up at 3, maybe 4 in a few cases. Since 1 contains food, are we stuck there because we feel like our relationship to food is not what it should be? I don't know if I agree with Maslow because as I read the list there are areas higher up the scale that I feel like I have had some success with. There are parts of a level I have achieved and parts of that same level I have not.

We can be experiencing growth in some areas while needing to be safe in others. Have you and I stepped forward into growth or is there that chance that we will stay where we are safe and where we know what to expect? We aren't happy there though or we wouldn't be signing up for challenges and trying yet again to break free from our preoccupation with eating and food. Even if you have already fallen short, don't wait to start again Monday or when the next challenge comes along or when the timing is better or whatever other game works for you. Some of you are new here at my place (welcome, by the way) and read my daily sermon :-) so I want to recommend you read "The Night Lie" from March if night time eating is something you need to conquer. You don't even have to wait until tomorrow - at exactly this same time tomorrow will be exactly one day so start right now. Rationalizations like waiting until tomorrow or Monday or whenever are one of the ways we give ourselves permission to eat as much as we want without being bothered by accountability because we are starting anew and we have fooled ourselves into thinking this time it is for real. Let's tell ourselves the truth beginning right now.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Thursday June 16 STS

1050 calories                   47 carbs                      10 waters                  no exercise today - tired - needed a rest day - triceps are sore  Hope everyone is still on track to lose weight this week!!

Paralysis through Analysis

We do try to dig into our deep, dark past don't we? We try hypnosis, acupuncture, therapy, and still we struggle. Do we over-analyze things? Do we think about all the gimmicks and magic food combinations - we just haven't found the right thing yet - that thing that will work. We keep trying all the latest things, get staples put in our ears, jaws are wired shut, and who knows what else?

There are people with real emotional problems who need professional help. We each have to decide that for ourselves. Doctors will prescribe things. If there is a need, a professional may be able to help. I have a friend who suffers from depression. She is angered when people wave off mental issues thinking they are just weakness of character. Her statement is that a diabetic needs insulin. People with mental issues need medication too. We just have to be very careful. I have read that ADD and ADHD are over-diagnosed. I don't know. Is some of it that adults don't want to deal with a child who is very active and energetic? I taught. I had some of these. Some needed medication. (I needed medication). Some needed discipline. Some needed to be challenged and taught in different ways. We just have to be careful with labels - people will live up to them. They will also hide behind them.

I remember when I was still teaching if there was a tragedy and a student was killed in a car accident counselors were called in, youth pastors from Churches in the community were there as well, we were told that if a student seemed to be having trouble to send him/her to the office. I know they are high school kids but this is life. We must learn to deal with life. I always felt like I was insensitive for feeling the way I did. If you have ever been around high school kids you know they tend to get dramatic and feed off of each other's emotions. Will these be the adults who have trouble coping? I have a friend whose only daughter had been a Devillette, a pom pom performance group in high school. It was a prestigious position as it was a large high school and competition was tough to get in. When this daughter did not make the squad one year, off to counseling they went. If something happened that was perceived traumatic, off to counseling they went. I think my friend needed the counseling really. My point is we are stronger than we think we are.

Many people would like to think they need professional help but don't :-) The blogosphere is full of counselors. I am one of them. Lucky you.

Let's say we did find a way to know all the reasons for why we overeat, why we haven't stuck to a food plan long enough to lose the weight, and why we don't keep off the weight once it is lost. Then what? Aren't we still going to have to do the same things to lose weight and keep it off? Do we have to know? Are we paralyzed because we are making a science experiment out of this?

We've overeaten and not moved enough and gotten fat. Now we need to eat differently and move more to lose the weight. You may now consider yourself to have been psychoanalyzed. Now get up off the couch and go do what needs to be done. (This includes me).

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wednesday, June 15 STS

1220 calories   41 carbs  10 waters   step aerobics

Kind of a hungry evening. I went outside and worked in the yard until it passed. At least with low carb the hunger isn't as unbearable as it used to be. Hope everyone had a successful day.

Is Experience the Best Teacher?

"Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes."  - Oscar Wilde

Have you ever heard that experience is the best teacher? Are we ever in trouble.We should be in the remedial class; we should have to have a tutor; we should have to repeat a grade in school. Why can't we learn from the many times we have slipped up? Shouldn't that experience have taught us something? Our GPA would probably be negative if that's possible.

The question is probably "Are we good students of experience?"  If something doesn't work, guess what we do? We do it again (and again). If the objective was to learn how to gain weight, it's a gold star on our paper. You know, the one that goes on the refrigerator. What an appropriate place.

Experience hasn't taught us much. Maybe we need another teacher. One that grades on the curve. That way, the best grade sets the standard not the grading scale with 100% at the top. One who doesn't assign any homework. We don't have to learn much that way.

Let's try to become members of the National Honor Society this time and wear the gold tassels on our graduation gown that signify we learned  and excelled.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Second Day - Week 2 - STS

1420 cal.   54 carbs.   11 waters   Jazzercise

Character Development

"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet.  Only through experiences of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, vision cleared, ambition inspired and success achieved."

Helen Keller

:~*~:. .:~*~:. .:~*~:. .:~*~:. .:~*~:. .:~*~:. .:~*~

While traveling through life, I have made choices that have injured myself and others. Others have made choices that have hurt me. Remembering and writing about my past has proved to bring up a plethora of negative emotions. At this moment I feel pain, remorse, anger, frustration, and am overwhelmed.

Every human on earth experiences these same feelings at one time or another. This is part of what I am here
for. How could I ever comprehend bliss without experiencing misery? How could I enjoy inspiration without suffering depression? How could I appreciate peace without encountering turmoil? I am grateful for the problems life gives me-- partnered with the emotions they bring -- because without the bad I could not understand the good. Everything has its opposite. Things will always change. Things will always get better,
just like the sun shines after each storm. The good news is that even though I may be experiencing negative feelings, I am learning empathy and I am gaining wisdom. And how much more will I value the rays of sunshine that break through the gray clouds?

FROM:   Recovery Meditations - OA

This thought of everything having its opposite is how C. S. Lewis explains the evil in the world. We would not recognize righteousness without it. Without darkness, we wouldn't be able to comprehend light. Would we be able to appreciate feeling well and healthy without ever having been sick? I have eaten enough to make myself sick at times, how about you? I wonder why remembering that was not enough to keep me from doing it again? What would make me override that sensation of "stuffed" and keep on? I learned finally. I don't do that anymore. I eat too much occasionally but those binges are over. I remember trying to make myself throw up. Luckily I couldn't do it or I would have been a bigger mess than I was already. We do live in a world of opposites but in the world of an overeater shouldn't we live one or the other and not both? We have the "feast or famine" mentality I guess.

All I can say is I should have a lot of character after this.

Monday, June 13, 2011

First Day - Week 2 - STS

1360 calories          70 carbs                  10 waters             step aerobics

Beautiful weather here in east central Indiana. No problem getting outside and doing some much needed yard work. Resisted the urge to "take a break" from being careful about what I ate today. What is it in us that is tempted to follow a big success with a big flub up? We may never know. It sure does help to read blogs and make and receive comments doesn't it?

Weigh In Week 1 STS

I weighed 215.5 this morning for a loss of 7.5 pounds.

You know how the first response is to try to excuse such a loss with "well, the 223 I began with was probably high because of ----- (you fill it in)".      Or - "I probably won't lose anything this week because this first week's loss was pretty big." Why do we try to downplay our successes? Are we afraid it will be short-lived? Are we afraid we won't be able to hang on and continue so we try to make it seem like not such a big deal?


Hopefully your first week was a success as well regardless of the size of your loss. Let's keep calm and carry on.

Another Assignment

So here is the assignment.....Please write what losing weight and reaching your weight loss goal means to you.

You might want to read that every morning. I do think our mornings set the tone for the day. I toyed with the idea of not going to Church yesterday because it was beautiful and I needed to get some yard work done. I then thought "God blessed you with all of this and you can't get to Church and worship?"

I don't know if you believe in God-incidences rather than co-incidences but after my post  about flies there was a fly on the screen in the kitchen. I got my fly swatter and BAM - missed him. I was in Church and we were praying and I felt something on my arm; I looked down and it was a fly. I thought I got that one (I was in Church after all) but am not sure. It can be distracting in Church during prayer if someone is flailing around trying to kill a fly. It just seemed kind of like God was trying to show me that the negatives are there and sometimes we fail at eliminating them on the first try. It wasn't the same fly in Church but I thought I got him. Was God telling me that with His help it is possible to overcome negatives? I would like to think so.

My day went  great yesterday since I went to Church and I am going to assume I killed that fly and scared the other one to death at home. I have gotten so much yard work done. I think I'll go to Church this Sunday too, join me?

Here is a great song for your enjoyment.


Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sunday - End of Week 1 STS

1190 calories today    74 carbs   10 waters     Sunday is usually my rest day but I worked in the yard most of the day. Will be weighing in the morning!! 

Quit Running In and Out!!

"The doors we open and close each day, decide the lives we live." -unknown author
As children how many times did we hear "quit running in and out"? My parents always seemed to be saying that. We would come in, close the door, then out we would go, opening it once more. That would also let in a fly or two at times which didn't help the situation or not getting the door all the way shut was another infraction.

So many times I have opened the door to new and greater things only to close it again by doing something unwise (translate "stupid"). I have started an eating plan and began exercising but then the new wears off; it isn't fun anymore; I start whining about what I want and can't have - there's a slip and "BANG" - the door closes once more. I could CLOSE the door on those things I know are going to slow me down or prevent my success. I could OPEN the door to being proactive and expecting the things I know are coming. The flies get in though when we open the door - doubt, insecurity, lack of motivation, stress, being tired - those stupid flies are buzzing around my head, I swat at them and they don't go away. I NEED A BIG HONKIN' FLYSWATTER!!! This summer every time you swat a fly let's envision that fly as one of the things that gets in our way such as our low level of determination or any emotion that has derailed us in the past. As we swat the fly we kill our negativity. Personalize it and swat that fly with all we've got!! (May want to get a few extra fly swatters). I had a comment from Lizzie on my blog that she thought the most important thing is how we handle failure. That made me think. We all probably have our own definitions of "failure" as we work through this. Haven't I read somewhere that it is only failure when we give up? I think there is failure and then there is FAILURE. FAILURE is when we give up and quit. It's hard. Being hungry is no fun for sure. Failure to me is when we don't do what we have committed to do for no good reason. Are there any good reasons?  Are what we call reasons excuses, rationalizations, and complaints?
Let's open up to going after what we are yearning to have regardless of the flies buzzing around our heads. Let's not quit and be defeated by our own lack of determination. We have to believe we can do it, focus on the goal, and maintain our self-confidence. Each successful day is a building block, an encouragement, proof that we can do it. We cannot say we can't do it because we have had successful days, weeks, even months that prove that statement to be false.
“What is right is often forgotten by what is convenient.” ~Bodie Thoene

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2011/05/31/5-things-weight-loss-didnt-know - good reading here. (from www.jensgyrations.blogspot.com)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Saturday, June 11, STS

Today was 1380 calories and 71 carbs. I got in the 10 waters and did Jazzercise this morning. Then this afternoon there was an event called City Fit in the park and our Jazzercise instructor was going to lead a demonstration of Jazzercise and wanted as many of us as could to come and be the class. There was a session at 1 p.m. and a session at 3:30 p.m. I did both. They were not full classes of 1 hour but about 35 minutes each just to show people what class is like. Sunday is a rest day for me for sure!!

Turn, Turn, Turn

Thought from George Washington Carver:

"How far you go in life depends on your being tender
with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic
with the striving, and tolerant of the weak and strong.
Because someday in your life you will have been all of

A person who can live up to these things truly has mastered being able to stay in the moment and focusing on the person whom he/she is with. They know how to ask the right questions to get a conversation started and understand; they truly understand. The principal at the high school where I taught was a master of this. No matter who he was having a conversation with, that person had his undivided attention. He did not take a phone call; he had perfect eye contact; he truly listened and it didn't matter if it was a teacher, a student, a custodian -- didn't matter.

Saw a thought-provoking quote:  To a child, love is spelled T-I-M-E; I imagine the aged spell it that way as well. Remember that kid in school that everyone picked on? Why is that? Have you ever read those heartbreaking stories about kids committing suicide because of being bullied at school? Being tolerant of the weak; how are we around someone with Down's Syndrome for example? We had a family leave our Church for a time because the wife I think was being criticized. She was the type of person who liked to be in the spotlight. She has amazing musical skills, does all kinds of activities with the youth, and is very creative. She did some kind of program that included a power point presentation of her family. I knew people would think she was showboating. She spent a lot of time on that and it did make a point. She dressed a little too sexy for Church I thought at times. Anyway, we lost a very talented person who contributed a lot because there is something in people that makes them want to bring others down a notch or two.

As we do some necessary self-examination, let's really be brutally honest. Al over at Almost Gastric Bypass has leveled some pretty heavy criticism of this Challenge. I thought about getting defensive and leaving a comment to that effect, but then it occurred to me that he is right. We have started so many times and not finished. I know people have to fall down and get back up a few times but it is still  a behavior that speaks to the resolve and determination of the person. How do we get those people to buckle down? What if it's us? Al is pretty serious about this. We have all been lax about this or we wouldn't be in yet another Challenge. This is my first Challenge. I didn't realize there were challenges all over the place!!

There is a season for everything.  Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 reads:

For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.

How important it is to use our time wisely. How much time do we have left? How will we use that time? We have lived long enough to have some regrets. That time is gone. Let's have the time of our lives; let's choose to be in control and get this weight off.

Ecclesiastes 7:8 reads:  Finishing is better than starting. Patience is better than pride.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Friday STS

I had a Quest Food Bar for breakfast              220 cal                     5 carbs

For a snack after Step Aerobics before doing
  route - Atkins Chocolate Shake                          160 cal                     2 carbs

Hungry after my route but before supper
  Atkins bar                                                           180 cal                      3 carbs

Lunch was an Arby's Junior Roast Beef        210 cal                     23 carbs

I had a huge salad for supper - it's always so hard for me to determine the calories for a salad as I clean out the refrigerator when I make one - I buy the romaine salad mix in a bag. I added cucumber, green pepper, green onion, cauliflower, broccoli, some shredded cheese, some sunflower seeds, slivered almonds, ranch dressing, cottage cheese (makes the dressing go farther) so here goes

vegetables                                                   100 calories                 5 carbs
cottage cheese                                             110    calories              5 carbs
shredded cheese/almonds/seeds                   150    calories              5 carbs
dressing                                                       140  calories                2 carbs

pudding for dessert (sugar free)             60 calories                7 carbs

that's 57 carbs   1330 calories       I went to Step Aerobics this morning.  got the 10 waters in

5 days down - 79 to go - NEW DIGIT!   Hope everyone had a successful day and can figure the calories in a salad better than I can :-)


From Simple Truths

Self-motivation...what does it mean? There's a simple definition for a complex subject: Self-motivation is an inner drive that compels behavior. What makes it complex, however, is that little word "inner," because what works for me may not work for you, and vice-versa.

There are, however, come common denominators; some basic fundamentals when it comes to motivating ourselves. It's these fundamental ideas, and some other things that have worked for me personally that I'd like to share with you. As we all know, it's not always what is said, but how it's said that can turn the switch from "off" to "on." One idea, if you're ready for it, can change your life forever.

Let's think about this - motivating ourselves. I have seen on some blogs that the person has a reward system set up for every 10 lbs. or some other milestone.

There are 3 primary reasons we lose motivation.
  1. Lack of confidence – If you don’t believe you can succeed, what’s the point in trying?
  2. Lack of focus – If you don’t know what you want, do you really want anything?
  3. Lack of direction – If you don’t know what to do, how can you be motivated to do it?
I imagine we would agree that #1 is the one that commonly afflicts us. I think many of us need to get some short-term goals in mind - the building blocks that will get us to the long-term goal of our target weight. If there is a lot of weight to lose it can seem so far away and out of reach and we lose confidence in our ability to get there.

If we want to lose 100 pounds, then 10 pound increments make sense as short-term goals. Remember in order to write a good goal, that goal must have these elements:

1. It must be under your control.  (I will marry a millionaire is not under your control).
2. It must be measurable - I will lose 10 lbs. not I will lose some weight.
3. There must be a time limit - I will lose 10 lbs. this month not I will lose 10 lbs.
4. It must be realistic - I will lose 20 lbs. this month is not realistic.

 I read one blog where the person started out her goals with "I want to---". This is what we called a "weasel" expression when I taught business letter composition. Politicians are very good at using weasel expressions. I want to be an Olympic swimmer; I want to be on Dancing With the Stars - wanting will not make either of these things happen.

Hopefully we all have goals that contain the 4 elements listed above. The goals for the Slimmer This Summer Challenge easily meet these 4 criteria. It is under our control to lose a realistic amount of weight in 12 weeks.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Thursday STS

Jazzercise    10 waters    1255 cal.   75 carbs

Hope everyone was successful today.

4 days down, 80 to go - we will be in a new digit tomorrow!!

Mirror, Mirror On The Wall


My best advice to any young person is to write down the top ten things you want in a partner, then become that person.

Kriss Hakala
American Mom, Friend and Human Rights Activist

Do you avoid mirrors, especially full length ones? I do. Have you ever been walking up to a store and see yourself walking toward it in the door glass? When you walk down the street have you caught your reflection in plate glass windows? Do you stop and look at yourself in those big mirrors over the sinks in public restrooms? When you are folding clothes do you ever hold up a pair of your jeans or shorts and think "wow, is that what it takes to cover my butt"? It's hard to accept that we are so big.

Body image is tricky. I remember when I was at my goal weight I would buy clothes that were too big because it just didn't "fit" that I could be small like that. 

I read OA materials - this made me think - it's from June 8 of "Just for Today".

Am I satisfied to be the way I am? I used to think the answer was NO, but then why did I go right on being the way I always was, resisting change?

Hopefully this made you think as well.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


Step Aerobics this morning.

1050 calories   53 carbs     10 waters

3 days down, 81 to go - we will be in a new digit soon!!

Hope everyone is still experiencing success. Don't let up.

An Anchor In The Storm

The word "floating" suggests to me  a gentle, rocking, almost unnoticeable drifting that if left unnoticed can take us where we don't want to go, we'll probably stay longer than we want, and it will cost us more than we are able to pay.

We have some anchors to keep us where we belong - writing down our food and water intake regardless of if we like what we have to write or not is one of them. It is so easy to gently float away from this.

Exercising is another. Three times a week is the minimum. We tend to start out overdoing it and then we burn out. Three to five times a week is something sustainable.

Did you know that you are being lifted up in prayer each day by some of the people on this Challenge? How does that make you feel? Someone talks to God about you. I have a son in the Army. He has been in Iraq twice. My prayer to God for him was that he be a warrior with a heart for God like David of the Old Testament. If you know about David, he was far from perfect but had a heart for God. I prayed there be a hedge of protection around Nathan while he was in Iraq. I prayed for an angel for Nathan - to go ahead of him. 

My prayer for each of you is that you have a heart for God, that you will be obedient to Him and that food will no longer be an idol. I pray there be a hedge of protection that you are aware of as you live each day. I pray for an angel to be guardian over your heart.

God's Word is like an anchor that can keep you from floating away from where you belong.

Ray Boltz:  The Anchor Holds - great song


Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Today's Slimmer for Summer

It's kind of a pain to write each little thing so I am just going to report:

1210 calories                54 carbs                  10 waters                         Jazzercise

Does anyone know if we can count running to the bathroom as part of our aerobic activity?

2 days down        82 to go           Hope everyone had a great day.

Help Yourself!

Have you ever heard the saying "He helps those who help themselves"?

Have we been doing things that help us or hurt us? If we don't help ourselves who will? WHO CAN?

Have we ever played the victim? Have we ever done the "poor me" act? Sure we have. It's a way to get sympathy. If people feel sorry for us, they will understand that our situation is out of our control won't they? They will help us on our way to the next weight gain by making us feel better about this condition we have. This is why I can't bring myself to call this a disease or a condition. It may be but I don't want that crutch. I can make up my own crutches thank you very much - been doing it for years.

Are we ready to stop making excuses? Are we ready to endure some hunger in order to lose weight? I don't think it's possible to lose weight without experiencing hunger. That's how our bodies tell us they are empty. Now it's time to switch over to the fat stores for energy. That's why fat gets mobilized into the bloodstream; the energy supply on hand has been used up, the hydrochloric acid in the stomach is causing it to contract and it gurgles, and now there is less fat stored because it has been called into the bloodstream for energy. This is a good thing. It is what we are after. It will be OK.

Monday, June 6, 2011

First Day

I have found a QUEST food bar that I really like. It's an easy breakfast. Google it if you want to read up on it. Anyway -

Breakfast:  Quest food bar                   220 cal.              5 carbs
Lunch: veggie burger (pickles, reduced
  sugar ketchup, no bun}                      140 cal.              9 carbs

Two coffees w/creamer (I get sugar-
  free hazelnut and mix it with half and      25 cal.             2 carbs
  half with heavy whipping cream)

1/2 cup cottage cheese                          110 cal.             5 carbs

raw vegetables/ranch dip                          35 cal.             2 carbs
1 hard boiled egg                                      80 cal.             0 carbs

fiber one yogurt for dessert                        50 cal.             8 carbs

Supper:  celery/pnb                                    200                 4 carbs
cheese/crackers                                          180                10 carbs
sugar free pudding - dessert                          60 cal.             7 carbs

1240 calories                   54 carbs
did step aerobics
10 waters
Had a good first day - hope everyone else did as well!!

1 day down, only 83 to go!!

Beginning Stats Slimmer for Summer

My beginning weight is 223 - more than I expected this morning (isn't it always). I can still be below 200 when this is over but my goal is still a 20 pound loss. Next Monday will be exciting to see my new number on the scale. I am all ready to journal everything today. Will be going to Step Aerobics. I have begun the letter to myself from the post before this one, have you? There is going to be another writing assignment next week so you better get started or you will be doing it in detention.  :-)


"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." -- Aristotle.
 Did you read my "Blazing A Path" post from a couple of days ago? The paths that we create in our brains through repeatedly doing things becomes automatic. Habits are created. Bad habits can be replaced with new and better habits by repeatedly doing something CONstructive in the place of something that is DEstructive. Autopilot for emotional eating can be changed.  
 There are many of us taking part in the Slimmer For Summer Challenge. Whether in the Challenge or not there has been a cycle in the past when beginning a new plan for eating and exercising. The first week we are all smiles; everything goes well, and we lose a decent amount. The second week things slow down a bit but that's OK, we lose some more weight but probably not quite as much as the first week. The third week is when the new starts to wear off; this isn't quite as much fun as in the beginning. The fourth week is when we have slipped up; we often undo a lot of our hard work that we invested in the previous 3 weeks. We get discouraged. We seek out support for what we have done and there are many who are glad to give it. They will try to help us rationalize what we have done. Who could blame us? It's understandable.
I'm going to give you an assignment. After all I was a teacher in my former life.
OK - here is your supplies list:

a nice, clean sheet of paper
your favorite ink pen (this could be an excuse to buy a new one - I love to buy paper/pencils/pens)
a comfortable chair
coffee/tea/something cold - your favorite refreshment
peace and quiet

Now - write a letter to yourself. This letter is to be read OUT LOUD whenever you feel like (or know) there is a slip up approaching. You already know how it feels - anxiety, stress, low self-confidence, motivation lacking - you complete the list. This should be a really long letter. In it you will detail what is about to happen and why. You will also recall times in the past when this has happened. You will also need to include an action plan because you really don't want to do this again. Is there someone you can call and talk this through with? Do you need to get out of the house? Will you visit someone? Why read it out loud? You will be using more of your senses that way. There will be more of an impact.

This letter can be revised and edited as you have more insights and thoughts. If any of you would like to share your letter on your blog, let us know so we can learn. I realize it may be too personal for that.

This could be a journal activity. I have had journal activities in past posts. You could keep your logs of eating and exercising. Good days could get a gold star on that page. Before and after pictures would work well. 

Let's be pro-active. There will be a test.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Walking for Crohn's

I had a post ready but wasn't quite happy with it. I usually have my posts created about a week out and then I have time to touch them up but yesterday I walked to raise money for Crohn's Disease. I have a niece with this and she was raising money to help find the cure. I didn't get home until late and my niece's daughter came home with me for the night (8 years old). Long story short - didn't get today's post done so I've put it off. Enjoy your Sunday everyone and remember the Slimmer this Summer Challenge starts tomorrow. Click on the picture at the right to join us! Who doesn't want to be slimmer this summer?

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Blaze a Path

Did you know that activities that we often perform have a path through our brains? When we do something over and over a path is worn and is transmitted via synapses from brain cell to brain cell. There is not a more powerful computer than the human brain.

I taught psychology at the high school level and when this topic came up I would ask the students how many times they referred to their class schedule at the beginning of the year. We would discuss how long it took for the schedule to be memorized and it was no longer necessary to refer to the schedule. A path had been worn in the brain. Those little synapses fired and we got to our classes in order.

Have you ever worn a path in the yard? You went the same way to someplace in the yard and over time the grass was worn away and you could follow that path that you had worn. Is there a path in our brain from emotional upset to eating? That path is like a laser beam at times, is it not? We respond to so many things with walking down that path - no wonder it's so easy to follow.

There is a poem about two paths converging in a woods and the person must decide which path to take. That person has to give up where one path might take him/her in order to follow the other. The person muses over the difference the path chosen can make upon life. What if we gave up the path to overeating and took the one to self-control/health/peacefulness? It could make all the difference in the world.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

-Robert Frost

Friday, June 3, 2011

Slimmer This Summer

This new challenge begins on Monday, June 6, and goes for 12 weeks. Click on the picture to the right. You may want to become a part of this exciting way to go to a new level in our weight loss efforts. My goals are:

I will be continuing low- carb and staying between 50 - 75 carbs per day.
I will continue with my present exercise regimen which is Step Aerobics on M - W - F and Jazzercise on
T - Th - S with rest day on Sunday.
I will drink 10 glasses of water per day.
I will lose 20 pounds which should put me below 200 (I will be really hard to live with at this point :-)

We are supposed to post progress reports which I will do.

***"Begin with the end in mind." ~~ Stephen Covey

Shock Effect

***The weirder you're going to behave, the more normal you should look.  It works in reverse, too.  When I see a kid with three or four rings in his nose, I know there is absolutely nothing extraordinary about that person.  ~P.J. O'Rourke

 Agree? Disagree?

In ancient Greece, Socrates was reputed to hold knowledge in high esteem. One day an acquaintance met the great philosopher and said, "Do you know what I just heard about your friend?"

"Hold on a minute," Socrates replied. "Before you talk to me about my friend, it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what you’re going to say. That’s why I call it the triple filter test. The first filter is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?"

"Well, no," the man said, "actually I just heard about it and…"

"All right," said Socrates. "So you don’t really know if it’s true or not. Now, let’s try the second filter, the filter of Goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about my friend something good?"

"Umm, no, on the contrary…"

"So," Socrates continued, "you want to tell me something bad about my friend, but you’re not certain it’s true. You may still pass the test though, because there’s one filter left—the filter of Usefulness. Is what you want to tell me about my friend going to be useful to me?"

"No, not really."

"Well," concluded Socrates, "if what you want to tell me is neither true, nor good, nor even useful, why tell it to me at all?"

from: My sister's blog

We should all follow this advice. How many times have we passed on something because it made us feel important? It didn't matter if it was true or not. How many of us have been the victim of such idle talk? Remember words are like spent arrows; they can never be called back.

If you saw a kid with 3 or 4 nose rings, are there any assumptions you would make? I know I would. I have been working on this. There is one blogger who has many tattoos, and I got the impression she regrets it now. She mentioned that this was done during a "season" of her life. She has some amazing accomplishments in the areas of exercise and weight loss. She has had to overcome some issues from her past in order to do these things.

We must treat people not as they are, but as we hope they can be. They will then try to live up to our expectations of them. My grandmother was my hero. You know how grandmothers think you are the smartest, most talented child ever born? I became a better person because I didn't want to disappoint my grandmother. Is there someone in your life you don't want to disappoint?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Tied Up In "Nots"?

Dear God,

Please untie the 'knots' that are in my mind, my heart and my life.

Remove the have-nots, the can-nots and the do-nots that I have in my mind.

Erase the will-nots, may-nots and might-nots that may find a home in my heart.

Release me from the could-nots, would-nots and should-nots that obstruct my life.

And most of all, dear God, I ask that you remove from my mind, my heart and my life all of the am-nots that I have allowed to hold me back, especially the thought that I am not good enough.

Author Unknown

OK - I will skip exercise, forget the water, eat as I please, and make time for God tomorrow maybe - NOT!