Monday, October 13, 2014

Need A Plan, Need Accountability

I stopped doing WW a month ago, and have no idea what I weigh, but I will tell you a wicked stomach virus certainly likely helped nudge things down. The fact is I don't have batteries for the scale.

Anyway. My workouts have been going great, just like recommended in the book. Switching to mornings has been fantastic; I'm out the door by 6:10 at the latest, and back by 7. I lay out my clothes on the dining room table the night before, and get dressed first so it's harder to change my mind. Then I chug iced coffee and get out the door. I'm making it there 5x a week now; such a huge improvement.
  • Switch to eggs, yams for breakfast (instead of banana oatmeal)
  • Eliminate rice and popcorn
  • Leave desserts/indulgences for one day a week
  • Cut back on fruit 
Basically, go back to eating on the lower carb end of things. I just feel better that way. I don't want to put a lot of crazy rules around it (ie Whole30) but I'm going to incrementally tackle the above. I gotta have a plan and accountability. Week 1 is eliminating oatmeal. Then I'll take out popcorn, which has been my go-to snack since having Espen has turned me into a salt-craving fiend. I'll figure out a way to work around that one, but not yet. Will check back in next week to report!

But I'm ready to start tackling the food again. Here I'm going to list out the things I KNOW I can do better with/cut out/make better choices:

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Here I Am

It's been a brutally tough week, where I have contemplated running away to escape the simultaneous and unrelenting pressures at home and work. Mama couldn't catch a break this week. Sigh.

However, I did recently read Lose It Right, by James Fell, who writes a great blog called His approach is all about moderation and drumroll please, getting in great shape and getting super consistent with workouts, and starting with baby steps on the diet, in three phases. He calls it the Virtuous Cycle, and I have totally experienced that in the past. I work out consistently, and just feel better and more able to say no to treats, because I'm feeling less stressed. He talks a lot in the book about that, about what physically happens to the brain when you work out, so you're less tempted to stress eat. It makes so much sense.

Upon finishing the book, I cancelled weight watchers and stopped weighing and counting anything. I can't tell you how much of a relief this is.

Phase 1 exercise is all about finding what you love and just doing that. I love, love going for long walks and lifting weights. So I ordered new walking shoes, which arrive tomorrow, but in the meanwhile have been going for walks just to clear my head, and getting in strength training when I can. I also ordered a monthly calendar and am going to give myself a star for every workout. So motivating, seeing that whole week filled with stars.

I took a picture of the diet part of Phase 1, here:

Naturally, because I am me, I read the book and started last week all gung ho and made changes that ended up being too drastic. This week, I'm going to make smaller changes to see how that feels. He talks about reducing fast food, which isn't a place where I know I can cut back. Where I know I can cut back is chips. Since having Espen, my hormones have changed and now I just want chips all the livelong day. Any kind will do, but I generally cave and have them at least a few times a week. For this week my plan is to swap out chips for popcorn, which is salty and crunchy too.

I'm going to try to remember to take my measurements tomorrow morning so I can start trending down in that regard too.

I hate feeling like I'm not on a plan, but honest to god, this past week nearly broke me. Onward.

Monday, September 01, 2014


Not sure what happened last week, but peeps, it was bad. I felt super moody, almost in tears daily, my clothes were tight and I felt super puffy. I suspect my period is making a comeback soon (it hasn't returned since July 2012).

So my weight was up 2 lbs this week.

What went right: Um. Not much. I didn't eat many WAPs until the last part of the week, so I did a great job of choosing Filling Foods.

What went wrong: Basically from Sunday to Wednesday I was miserable. Miserable. I went to the gym Thursday night and almost left in tears. I did my warm up then aborted mission. I just couldn't do it. I felt fat and like I shouldn't be in the gym at all. Ugh.

Starting Weight: 133
Ending Weight: 135
Difference: +2

I'm feeling better this week and will have a more positive update on Wednesday.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

It's on like Donkey Kong

Ok peeps. After jacking around and eating too much/too little, getting on the bandwagon, jumping off face-first, I am going to do a little challenge. I mean, it doesn't make much sense to keep paying for WW if I'm not going to follow it. 

So. My 41st birthday is in 12 weeks. I am going to get down to my goal weight, which is 13.4 lbs away, by then. That's a little over 1 lb per week. I SO got this. 

Here is the plan: 

Each week I'll check in with what went well, what went wrong, and plans for the coming week. 

One of the things that has worked the best for me is forecasting out events where I'll want to use my points, i.e. I'm going to a birthday party this weekend and I know they'll have GF goodies. Awesome, I'll save up some points for that. Other tricks up my sleeve include hordes of popcorn, as I reach for it when I really want chips, and shutting down the kitchen at 7. I.e. no eating after dinner, at least on non-workout days. My last and final trick, which always works for me, is to envision the number I want to see on the scale, and think hard about it when I'm feeling the need to go off the rails. 

12 weeks. 13.4 lbs. I'll be back weekly with updates. Weigh in is on Wednesdays.

Here's my starting point:

Starting weight: 133.4 

Number I want to see next week: 131 something. 

Plan for the week: Pete is back from Norway and I can resume a normal workout schedule, which will start tomorrow night after the kids go to bed. Workout plans are Thursday = intervals, Friday = lift, Saturday = intervals, Sunday = off, Monday = lift, Tuesday = intervals. 

Birthday party goodies on Sunday, likely a glass of wine at some point this weekend to celebrate Pete being home. I'm not buying peanut butter and we're almost out of almond butter at home (phew). 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Back to That Other Way of Eating

Good God, I'm already annoyed just even READING that headline.That OTHER way of eating. As if there's distinct ways, as if there's one way that's better than the other.

Which is exactly why I've backed away from Paleo in general, because of how dogmatic it is. As I've documented ad nauseum, in the past it really triggered a lot of disordered eating for me. The black/white assignment of good and bad foods.

So why the hell would I consider going back?

Because I feel better on it. SIGH. I feel better, I have more energy, I sleep better, I don't have cravings or desire to empty the potato chip bag.

I've spent a lot of time thinking about this. Of course I have. Eating more protein and fat and less grains made me feel better. But going into BEING BACK ON PALEO and NO RICE EVER or no popcorn or no whatever makes me bananas just thinking about it. Weight Watchers, as we all know, still thrives on the antiquated low-fat dietary style, which uh, runs counter to Paleo. But I tried going off WW a few weeks ago, and being without the limitations on portion control of almond butter, dark chocolate, avocado, etc. made me feel all weird and before you know it I was happily making GF PBJs daily. I need a cap on the amount of "treats" I have, and here's the thing about eating Paleo: because I'm so satiated from the fat and protein, I have less cravings for crap in general, so its also way easier to cap it.

So this is what I decided:
  • Stay on WW Simply Filling plan, which enables me to eat unlimited meat, fruit, veg and aims for 3 tsp of olive oil a day. (full disclosure tho: I've never ever counted olive oil and have done pretty well so far on WW to date, ahem). 
  • Use by 49 Weekly Allowance Points for avocado, bacon fat, and almond butter, GF bread, etc. Basically anything that I have a hard time portion-controlling. 
  • Experiment with dropping my morning oatmeal and banana and switching to protein and fruit or a yam for post-workout refuel. 

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Gym Plans: Adjusted

I'm back. I need to write some things down. Here goes.

Topic 1: I am horrendously out of shape. Sure, I am a size 4-6 and weigh 131. But squishy and flabby. The definition of skinny fat. I started Lean Eating over again, on my own terms with Phase 1. I don't love Phase 1 - there are two exercises in particular that annoy me, due to the fact they use bands. My current gym set up is in our office park, which is basically like a larger version of a hotel gym. Three treadmills, 2 ellipticals, 1 recumbent bike, full set of dumbbells and some stationary machines (for lat pull down, etc.) It does not have bands. I could purchase the bands, but they're $80. Alternatively, we have a "CrossFit" room at our actual office, which has a bench, squat rack and bands. We're free to use that, i.e. I could go in there and bang out some squats, pushups, etc. but it's not my fave place because it's basically a 10x15 room without ventilation, so I'd have to "work out," and I use that term loosely because there's no place to warm up, stretch, foam roll, etc., and then I guess just go back to work? That's weird. And since they're not my bands, I don't feel like I can borrow them to go to the other gym. And because I couldn't do the workout JUST PERFECT, Phase 1 was like a stone in my shoe. Annoying.

I finished Phase 1, then started Phase 2, which I loved so much more. Then I started coming off my medication, and um wow, did not see those side effects coming. The days after I worked out I felt like I had been hit by a car with fatigue. Like, bone tired. First-trimester style where you sit down for a minute and wake up an hour later. Naturally, this was a bit of a problem with the whole working at a startup/supermom thing. I tried eating more, and that helped marginally, but what helped more was just stopping. Ugh. I think part of the problem was that I was lifting too heavy: when I look back at my LE experience and that year, I can see that when I lifted heavier was when I saw real results. I started lifting pretty heavy, and was impressed with how fast I was seeing my strength come back. Which was awesome and super inspiring. And my muscles weren't too sore, i.e. I was warming up and cooling down and lifting within my range. But I was feeling so damn tired all the time, grouchy and the worst part: I started dreading my workouts. I guess it was just too taxing on my body. SIGH.

Once I realized it was coming off the medication -- which apparently was a stimulant? YIPES -- I decided to just lay off the GETTING IN SHAPE PLANS OF 2014 VERSION 87828374. Let the medication fully get out of my system, aim to get more sleep so *that* becomes a habit and go from there.

And now that I'm feeling more like myself, I'm ready to get started again. So here is my plan: Start very small. Go for a walk tonight without putting parameters around it, i.e. do my same familiar route but remove any parameters around it, i.e. do it within a certain time or get my heart rate up or wear the right shoes and etc. etc. etc. Instead I'm going to just go out there and walk it. Here's my plan for the week.

Monday: Phase 2 Workout A, at the starting reps/sets but with EASY weights for the first week only. The second week, I'm telling myself I can hit it a little harder, if my body gives the thumbs up.

Tuesday: Easy walk again

Wednesday: Phase 2 Workout B

Thursday:  Day off, or walk if I'm feeling like it

Friday: Phase 2 Workout A

Saturday: Run intervals. I'm missing going out for a run, desperately. I want to start again, so I'm going to follow the Phase 1 intervals guide: start with 1:3 ratio of work:recovery.

Sunday: Day off or easy walk

NOW. These things can only happen if I get my ass to bed by 10 p.m. every night. I cannot expect to take on extra "work" as the case may be, and demand more from my body without properly taking care of it and getting extra rest.

Beyond the squishy factor, as I have documented here uh, for the past FOREVER, working out  1. it increases my confidence 2. it gives me space to decompress and have dedicated just to me every day 3. it is my thing.

I've been struggling A LOT lately with taking the space and time to do things that are just MINE. I made an apple and almond butter yesterday and ate it huddled in the kitchen (our kitchen is no lie, 3x5) because it was the last apple in the house and I knew if the kids saw it I'd have to share. I share everything. Working out is MINE and no one else's. There is a MARKED improvement in my overall temperament and demeanor when I'm working out. I need to take part of my life back, and get real about where I'm squandering my very limiting time (I'm lookin at you, Facebook), and making better choices that give me more ROI for my quality of life.

So that's what I had to say about THAT.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

FB Page

Friends, I'm migrating sorta over to a FB page. Come on over!