Three Goals Thursday

000StopStallToday is Thursday.  Yay!!!!!  Having gotten over the hump for another week is a good reason to celebrate, so let’s do it.  Let’s stop stalling, and start dancing!!!

I had begun to take my own advice about happy dancing over here in NEPA when I realized that I owed you an update, so let’s get to it.

Click here for a reminder of my goals from last week, but what I really want to talk about for the majority of my time with you this morning is what I learned about myself while working to achieve my three teeny, tiny goals this week.

WHAT I LEARNED ABOUT ME THIS WEEK

Recording what I’m eating and how I’m feeling about my eating helps me better understand my proclivities both when eating and when I’m away from food. The best thing about this improved clarity I am gaining from setting goals and working to achieve them, is that I am beginning to be able to identify eating patterns. I can see how this new ability to see my eating patterns might help me program my eating in the future, so I’m excited about this new development.

Sugar makes me logy and hurty.

Sometimes, because I’m sleepy in the morning, I need to stick with stretchy and bendy exercises, instead of “going hard” at my dark morning routine.

True Story: I fell while doing a squat in the early morning hours this week. I honestly thought I was doing well with my squatting exercises until my “temple” toppled.  I laughed when it happened, then I immediately prayed I didn’t wake up the Mr.  He seemed to still be snoring, so I was good on that front.  Plus, I still had my sense of humor intact. Win/Win!!

I thought I was awake and fully balanced.  Really I did!

When something starts to consistently hurt, make a change. On Wednesday morning I hurt a lot. Probably as a result of the added sugar I ate on my stress-filled days (Monday and Tuesday). Ugh. Anyway, hurting as I was, and being tempted to do nothing, as I was, I decided to stretch and bend and leave it at that Wednesday morning, and it was a good decision.

When stress is high, friends meet the need. On Tuesday the stress levels at work were big–a lot bigger than normal. Everything about my routines there is changing and I am powerless to stop the process.  More on this later.  Notable for me this week, is that I reached out to others who I trust when I was crazy stressed, and I asked them to help me recenter myself. They did, and I was grateful. I hate how bad habits with food seem to appear when life gets tough.  Truth:  I felt emotionally food crazy for two days, it’s true, but the “feeling” didn’t last for two months. That’s progress!

MY CALORIE COUNTING SAGA CONTINUES

When I look at the progress I made this week with my three teeny, tiny goals, I feel good. I exercised and meditated as planned all week.  Calorie counting and attention to portion control went okay, too.  Not my favorite thing to do, for sure (I think you understand that), but I did count my calories every day (see chart below), and I even separated out my protein calories, so I kept those promises made to myself this week and I made some progress re: developing habits that will unconsciously move me through life in the future, and that feels good.

I guess having fulfilled each of my three teeny, tiny goals for this week 100% of the time makes me 100% on task and A Winner this week, but I am feeling oddly un-winner-ish at the point of this reporting.  Truth: Feelings have been screaming to have their say this week, and I’m not “feeling” all that happy about that.

Lesson learned: There is definitely an emotional component to eating, planning, doing, and living inside the circle of change.  I wish there were not, but for me, there is!  Dang!

I’m still not shooting for a calorie goal/cut off with my habit-building experiment at this time, so what I did this week was simply record the numbers and keep them for reporting here.

Below, you’ll find the evidence of my work to meet Goal No. 3 this week:

Thursday, Dec 10   TC:1713        PC: 551
Friday, Dec 11        TC:1846        PC: 620
Saturday, Dec 12   TC:1330        PC: 500
Sunday, Dec 13     TC:1610        PC: 327
Monday, Dec 14    TC:1970         PC: 500
Tuesday, Dec 15   TC:1718         PC: 636
Wed, Dec 16         TC:1537         PC:547

*TC=Total Calories eaten         PC=Protein Calories eaten

I paid some attention to portion sizes this week, especially at dinner time, which is my heaviest meal of the day. I need to brainstorm a way to make this meal lighter, and I don’t think portion sizes will help there.  If you have a suggestion, please share it in the comments.  I hate to eat only salads at dinner time, because Mr uses this meal as his main eating event of the day, and really the only time he sits to eat and eats any kind of veggies at all.

THREE TEENY, TINY GOALS FOR NEXT WEEK

Since I am feeling like I have not yet developed a habit with counting calories, or even decided if this is how I want to approach food in the future, I think I may give the practice one more week of my attention before making a decision whether to go further with the CC part of my present routine.  That means next week’s goals will be:

1. Continue on with 15 minutes of exercise each morning.
2. Continue on with 5 minutes of meditation each morning.
3. Count calories for the week, watching portion sizes.

One last thing:  Dr. J has some great suggestions for making the holiday eating/drinking seasons merrier this year.  If I were you, I’d hop on over to Calorie Lab and check out the information he shared there yesterday. Good stuff. My favorites from his list?  No. 6 and No. 11–so important for keeping things in perspective when the house, the office, and your friends homes are full, full, full of sugar laden goodies and liquid cheer.

What goal of yours is turning into a habit as you practice, practice, practice doing it each day?  Is calorie counting the way to keep eating excesses at bay?  What do you think?

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Stubborn Change, but Change Nonetheless

000fast foodThis morning I logged my food eaten over the weekend and yikes!

Ouch!

Pow!

Bamm!!!  Not good.

Okay, now I understand why I am at a stand still with my weight.

I HATE counting calories, but it seems my ability to eye-ball them is defective.  I can’t tell how many whopping calories there are in foods.

Cannot.

Simply am not capable in my present state!

That’s okay, it just means I need to develop a plan for eating on the weekends that is more vigilant than the one I have for week days.

It all makes sense now.

Recalculating.

Reminding myself…

Change Is Possible, and the more I want it, the quickly it will come to me.

Today is a new day.  Time for a new plan.  Ready for a new tomorrow.

When have you had to recalculate in order to triangulate a course that will produce a better outcome in the future?  What one or two habits have you adopted for making this process easier?

A Week of Being Honest

000blmg onion

Dinner last night: Grand Fail!

The good news: I learned a lot from it.

We went out for Veteran’s Day, celebrating hubs service to his country and our family.

Thank you, Bob! You’re the bravest man I know.  Muahhh!

Our restaurant of choice was offering a free onion to all vets. Yum, my hubs love them. Little did I know that thing had 649 calories.

Yikes! What?! No kiddin’?!!!  Ugh!!!!!!

And if that was not enough, I went on to have a bowl of soup, a roll, steamed broccoli (108 calories, really?!) and 2 small pieces of chocolate candy. Actually, I ate the candy before we left the house, because I had eaten a very light lunch and didn’t want to have low sugar symptoms while we waited for a table.

Interject here some helpful info about the onion place.  If you call ahead, their rule is that you won’t wait more than 20 minutes to be seated once you enter the restaurant, regardless of the normal wait time.  We called ahead, and although I was skeptical, the did seat us on the 20 minute mark. Good job, OSH!

Now, back to our regularly scheduled post:

When all the eating was done for the day, I calculate I swallowed a whopping 2,149 calories yesterday.

Who knew. It didn’t feel like a lot going down. 😉

I’m trying to look at this in a positive way today.

My goal for this week was to honestly record real values concerning what I ate. I’ve struggled with food lately, too much, so I decided it was time to get real about what I was actually putting in my pie hole.  The holidays are coming soon and there will be lots of opportunities to sample, bite, munch, and devour delicious recipes made by many, so I’m concerned. I don’t even want to think about how many calories are in most people’s Thanksgiving meals. And Christmas munching, forget about it!

I needed to take stock of what I was doing before the holidays began to unfold.

I’m not happy about the number of calories I ate yesterday, but I’m glad I’m counting them. An honest inventory of my behavior with food helps me course correct. I’m all about change these days, so having a better handle on what I’m doing is a good, good thing. This is the only way I’ve found to stop eating too much.

I hope your Veterans Day was an opportunity for you to spend quality time with your sweetness.  If your hon is not a veteran, I hope you found a veteran and thanked him or her for the service they provided while in our military.  America is strong because of their sacrifice.

If you’re reading this and you’ve served in some capacity to secure my freedom–THANK YOU!

I’ll end with a picture of my veteran as a babe in arms.  Sooo long ago.  When the world was young…

June Goals

Summer time is a hectic time for me.  I get so caught up with life over here in NEPA that I have no time to write, and work has been busy. I’ve had multiple projects to attend to each week during May, and I’ve spent lots of money.  Yikes.

I wanted to record my June goals before we got too far into the month.  I’m hoping  to remember to do this every month going forward.   We’ll see how that turns out.

For today, I will share the list of goals I have for June 2014:

1. Do some deep cleaning at the house and in the yard, using a critical eye to see things that normally escape me. I may ask a friend to do a sweep and give feedback. So many things seem to be invisible to us when we live with them every day.

000painting

2. Paint the back bedroom. About five years ago we built a new home and that bedroom has never been painted to this day. See what I mean about things being invisible even though we live with them every day. It’s about time this room got it’s finish.   BTW: I will be painting my room light green, not blue. I will try to post pictures of it when it is finished.

3. Build a porch swing and some chairs. I have been wanting to do this for a while, but I have never quite dared to begin the project. This month, I will begin. I also need to purchase new Adirondack chair cushion covers, but I have not found any patterns for fabric that I like. If you know of a colorful pattern that you think is fun, send the link to me, will you? I’m looking, looking, looking, and love poppies, tulips, and anything bright with red or orange overtones.

4. Plant some trees. A friend is going to be helping us position the trees, then hubs will dig the holes and in they will go. We need the shade in the yard and I’m sick of putting this project off.

5. Revisit my Action Plan regarding food.

6. Buy that kayak we have been talking about before the summer is gone.

I’m hoping I can tackle all six of these goals for June. Hold me accountable, won’t you? I want to get these things done.

What are your goals for June? What are you doing that is fun this summer? Do you could all activity as part of your action plan for losing weight?

Guilt and Chicken Wings

000chicken wing-close upLast time I checked in with you guys, I was dealing with guilt over eating 2 small squares of pizza and 2 chicken wings. 

Some of you might say, “Come on. Grow up.  Really?  You ate that much and you’re guilty about it?”

Yep, I am.  I’m also nervous about it.  Nervous because I know me and food.  We have a love/hate relationship that spans decades.

I’m concerned whenever I stray from the food plan I have for myself. That plan was put into place so that I might achieve health and fitness goals that NEED to happen in my life.  However, I’m also aware of the need to remain calm when a decision is made to go off plan, and to analyze why I did it, and what it cost me.

In any attempt to determine what Saturdays pizza and wings cost me, I decided to create a mock-up of what my pizza slice looked like.  I wanted to create a visual for what I truly ate, instead of depending on my imagination or eyeballing to inform me.  I wanted a reality check, so I got out a piece of paper and I began to record what I originally thought was a small piece/square of pizza.

My first attempt was to draw a rectangle that was 2×4″ in size.

I looked at that rectangle and immediately knew my square was bigger than that.

I put another inch on the long end of the rectangle. Now we were getting somewhere.

It still looked smaller than what I remembered eating, so I drew another half-inch onto the side of the rectangle.

Better, but was it right?  Was the slice I ate really that small?

I turned the rectangle side ways.

I picked the paper up and put it to my lips.

Was that the size of the piece I had eaten on the weekend?  It seemed right, or at least close.

Problem is: I ate two “squares” of pizza on Saturday.  Two squares that size, plus 2 chicken wings and a cup of hot tea.

Searching the internet to determine the calories in this serving of lunch was not easy.  From what I could tell, 2 mild buffalo chicken wings is about 110 calories (for both), and a slice of cheese pizza from a small pizza is calculated at 130 calories each, so that’s what I will go with per slice for my pizza eaten (although I am pretty sure I ate less than that, seeing how my slice was smaller and I gave part of the crust to the cat).

The difficulty with knowing how dense the calorie load is with processed foods is evident here, which is why I have moved away from consuming many processed foods. Plus, I don’t like the chemical load I get with much of what I find in already-handled-for-you foods, pizza included. Who knows how much oil they put in the dough, on the dough, or in the sauce when they made that pizza.  And forgetabout the oil in the cheese “product” they slathered on top.

My lunch on Saturday cost me conservatively between 370 and 550 calories.

Ugh.

And when you add in the emotional response I had to eating that little bit of food, the total is much larger.  Plus, it didn’t fill me, and I had to get through the afternoon with cup after cup of hot tea, so that I would not eat again until supper.

Keeping this weight off is not easy.  Losing more weight is not easy.  Staying away from fast food pizza and wings is not easy.  It is worth it, but it’s not easy.

Today, I have declared a wheat-free Wednesday for me.  I’m still trying to escape the damage done on Saturday, and really through the entire weekend.  With company in town, I could have done better. Thank the Lord, one of the wee ones in the house this weekend loves veggies and fresh fruit. I tried to hang with him and soak up his vegetarian ways.  He does like pizza, too, though.  Don’t we all?!