How do you do it…

DSC_0389…how do you say NO to that face?

Answer: You don’t!

But if you don’t, then you have to be willing to make a picnic lunch to eat out in the newly greened grass; chase boys around with a bubble wand and later assist them in their battery powered jeep; roll downhill with them, and then across the flat part of the lawn, just because they want to do it and want you to do it with them; and/or sit cross-legged on the living room floor for hours, playing with blocks, legos, and sticker books.

You drive them to the Easter Egg Hunt, and help them find the sparkle egg, so they can win a prize. You sign them up for the basket draw and you look startled when their name is drawn and they are declared winner. You do all these things because you want them to know that they are important, ultimately important to you, and that you love them and want the best for them.

These are the same reasons why I continue to get back on the clean eating wagon after I have fallen off.

This is the source of my motivation to exercise when I don’t feel like it–yeah, it comes from this place.

This is why I am taking better care of myself today than at any other time in my life, because changing the destructive things about myself is hard, but if I want to be a different person, a person who knows self-love, self-worth, self-discipline and the impact of influencing others for good, I have to find a way to dig down deep and discover a tenacity that once alluded me.

I have to want to get better, and that begins with love and concern for me.

Is this face the face that launched  my recovery?  No, but it is one of the faces that keeps it going strong.  I want to live a vital, energetic life for as many years as God has given me, and I don’t want to say I can’t roll downhill because I’m too heavy to walk back up again.  I want to walk, run, jog, skip, bike ride, and hike myself to healthy town, in part because of this face.

When I am tempted to eat that cookie or a bowl of ice cream, I remember that life is not about how much food I can swallow on any given day. It’s about staying healthy and being able to enjoy the good times as they roll by me.  Good times that include this face and others.

I will not return to those days of food lust and immovable fat.  I want more, and I will have it, because change is possible, and it begins with ME!

Why do you want to change?  What keeps you going when before you would have quit?

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Tax Day, Two Carrots, and Catching Hubby’s Eye

Tomorrow is Tax Day!

Yikes, and here I sit with forms needing to be filled out. I do this every year…say I’m going to file early, but don’t. Its one area of my life where I regularly procrastinate, although I wish I didn’t.  Found it hard to find forms on-line today.  I like to do my calculations by hand, then enter whatever is needed on to the site provided.

I know, I know, crazy, right?

The weekend was a nice one. Yesterday in NEPA was beautiful!!!!!

I ate out for two meals this weekend, but avoided the bread they serve at the table, and didn’t eat chips with the wrap I had yesterday.  Water to drink, so it all went well.

I tried a new banana bread recipe that I tweaked to  make more healthy. It was a HUGE hit with the guys, who made quick work of the muffins the batter produced.  I will definitely make these again, but next time I will add some wheat germ and maybe some unsweetened coconut to the mix.

Groceries on Saturday were outrageously expensive, but that’s what I get for waiting so long to shop.  I hadn’t any fresh produce in the house, except two carrots in the produce bin.  Nothing in the freezer, save some half-empty berry bags.  I needed absolutely everything, so the price tag for all of that was rather high.  Plus, I picked up a few things for Easter baskets, for those lil guys who will be visiting on the weekend if all goes well.

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I’m not entirely sure why the picture of dancing carrots, but I thought it was whimsical and therefore appropriate for a Monday.  🙂

I spent some time with a nephews over the weekend, too.  Lil guys–they are so much fun.  One is 2 years old and the other 4 months.  The tiny tot has a milk allergy, so he is consuming this really expensive formula made of soy or something.  His formula for the week costs almost half what my groceries came to, but he is doing much better now that they have found the problem and are able to provide him with something that rests easy on his tummy.

I also spent part of my day yesterday with a gal who is stepping down from antidepressants.  I think it’s probably a bad move on her part, but she feels she suffers from seasonal affective disease and every spring she gets the hankering to be off her meds. She was really negative almost the entire time we were together and very distracted.  I couldn’t figure out what was going on with her until I thought about what she’d said about quitting the meds, then it all made sense.  I hope she is being careful and being monitored by her doctor as she steps down. Those things can be dangerous, when you quit them cold turkey.

After church yesterday a cool thing happened.  A friend walked up to me and said, “During service today I looked where you normally sit and thought, where is Lori?”  She went on to say that she saw my husband and other family members, but not me. She looked once, twice, and then again.  Checking that third time, she realized that the woman standing next to me hubs was me.  She said she seriously couldn’t tell that it was me, and asked me how much weight I had lost in total.  I shared that I’ve lost over 100 lbs since I began this adventure.  I told her I have between 50 and 60 lbs to go and she couldn’t believe I needed to lose that much.  When you’re tall, the eye does funny things, but believe me, I do need to lose that much.

My hubs has been making comments recently, too.  He keeps saying, “Man, if you get any skinnier, I won’t know you.” And, “Wow, you are getting thin!”

I’m not getting thin, but I am looking pretty good.  🙂

I’m not losing weight right now, but I have been working out on the bike.  I must be toning while my body is making adjustments prior to a move off this plateau.  I hope it happens soon.  I’m ready to see the scale drop a little further.

I talked to a co-worker today who is trying to lose.  She’s stymied, and I admitted to her that I am too. Maybe we can help each other.

Well, that’s about it for this Monday post.  Hope you all are enjoying this break in the weather. I hear we are supposed to drop down and have snow flurries again tomorrow.  Ah, Spring, you’re such a tempter!

How do you feel when others notice your hard work with weight loss?  What is your favorite compliment of all time?

 

Aside

Trader Joe’s Weekend

Last weekend I visited a Trader Joe’s for the first time. We were in the Rochester area, visiting the kiddos, and wanted to pick up a few things for lunch the next day so my daughter-in-law suggested TJ’s.

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I was surprised when I stepped into the store space. I had no idea that the interior of the store was going to look so different from the stores in our area, and the place was packed out.

While inside TJ’s, I felt a few folks were moving down the aisles a little faster than was safe.  It was seriously very busy, and this at about 4:00pm in the afternoon.  I felt a little overwhelmed while I was in the store, but I think my husband was seriously overwhelmed. He wanted to get out of there as quickly as he could.

My hubs doesn’t trust big city folk.

I felt like I found a few good buys at TJ’s, and if I were to shop there on a regular basis (I won’t, we live in the boondocks), I would make Trader Joe’s a part of my regular buying  routine.  The chicken was a bit pricey the day we were there, and I could not, no matter how many trips I made up and down the aisles, find seasoned bread crumbs for the recipe we wanted to try, but no matter.  We left there and headed over to Wegman’s, where I finally got my coffee and the rest of the items we needed for the next day’s lunch.  My daughter-in-law already had Saturday’s dinner in the crock pot; a combo of chicken, spices, and some kind of tasty rice.  We paired that with the red bell peppers and pears I had brought from home, and some carrots she already had, to make a yummy, nutritious, and I-would-definitely-eat-that-again meal that we thankfully consumed after a long day of shopping, walking, lingering, and waiting for each other at various commercial outlets.

I was a little worried about my trip to Rochester this weekend, because I’m still sore after the fall I took a week ago Sunday.  The practice of sitting cross-legged on the floor at my son’s house carried with it some pain.  My tailbone and my neck still hurt. I think I’m going to contact my doctor and see about having an MRI.  Maybe its just soreness and swelling, but I want to be proactive with this injury.

I felt like the food went just okay on the weekend. I’m at a plateau again, which really sucks, so I’m trying to figure out why I’m unwilling to do what it takes to get the weight moving down again.  I’ve had a few people comment on my weight lately. Just yesterday, I ran into a gal I had not seen for a while and she said, “Wow, you’re skinny.  You’ve lost a lot of weight, haven’t you?”  I’m thankful for these occurrences when I am stuck on a plateau for this long, but believe me, what I am right now could in no way be described as skinny.  Still, when I went to have my hair done tonight I was amazed at how average sized I looked in the bathroom mirror at the salon.  Must be the bike riding is firming things up, even though the scales says no weight has been lost.  I know I have to get things moving again, regardless, so I’m planning on doing some journaling to see if I can figure out where to go from here and cannot wait for spring to finally arrive.  It was 26 degrees in NE PA today.  Burrr.

 

 

 

 

Here Kitty, Kitty

000catsWe live in the country, so it’s not unusual to see stray animals wandering up and down the road on any given day. One guys cows are in the road, while someone else’s dog is running loose. It’s not a big deal, but what burns my buns is when someone drops off a cat (or rather, kittens), in the dead of winter, at the bottom of our driveway.

Mind you, we are not farmers. Yes, we do have a three-sided barn across the street road from the house, and we do allow a neighbor lady to harvest our hay, but we do not farm, either for sport or commercially. So why, then, do people drop cats off at the end of our driveway, and why do they do it in January, February, and March–the absolute coldest months of the year?

I know the answer to that question.  Because they can!

They also drop them off at our house, I suspect, because they know we are softies.  Every single cat we have ever owned since living in the country has been a cat that was dropped off at the end of our driveway.

Zigzag was a drop off.

Mama Cat–a drop off.

Jingle Bells–a drop off.  And now we have a tri-colored, long-haired, shabby, but chubby, I’m-guessing-male-but-can’t-be-sure-cuz-he-takes-off-like-a-bullet-from-a-gun-whenever-you-see-him drop off living under our pine trees.  Actually,  I think he lives in our barn with the horse and donkey, but he has darted under the pine tree any time I have seen him about.

I do not want a long-haired stray as a pet.

Let me say that again: I do not want a long-haired stray as a house pet!

Ah, that feels better.

All this to say that sometimes things happen in life that we wish did not happen.  A stray cat ends up in your pine trees, or you fall on the ice.  Sometimes you get involved with the wrong people, or you overdraw your checking account, or you forget to buy apple cider while you’re downtown (and no, you are not turning around and going back the 6.5 miles it takes to get to town from the hill for that).  Guess you will have to experiment with the ingredients you have today, Lori, instead of trying that new recipe.

Here’s the thing:  Regardless of how chaotic or unexpected life becomes, and no matter what shenanigans it pulls, WE DO NOT HAVE TO EAT OVER IT!  Period, exclamation point!

Today, we can choose to surrender to the urges we have to overeat, or we can zip the lip, find something else to do, pray until the urge passes, and drive around the neighborhood looking for whoever it is that keeps leaving those cats at the end of the driveway–but know this: Overeating is not an option!

Go find those knitting needles, or your journal, or the herbal tea you love with the peppermint in it.  The food will wait for you.  It never goes away.  Dinner will be here soon, and then you can eat free of guilt.

That’s my advice to myself and anyone else who needs it today. Don’t let food steal your joy away or run your life.  The decision is yours–choose well.

What do you do when you are frustrated?  How does food “weigh” into your thinking when you feel stressed?  What is your go-to answer for dealing with food urges?

Goals for the Week

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My thoughts are turning to Spring, I cannot deny it. The birds are singing, the days are getting longer, I am fantasizing about buying a kayak and a bike, both–make that two bikes, so hubs can ride with me–and I’m getting outside for more than five minutes at a time.

Woohoo, I can’t wait for warmer weather!

I’m also thinking about all the possibilities that exist for me and millions of others, now that we have faced our fears, done due diligence, and taken the weight off.

What will I be able to do this summer that I could not, no way, wouldn’t even have tried last year?

I can’t wait to find out.

On the food front: Things are going better. I have taken on a few challenges for myself, and with the exercise, I’m feeling stronger and more capable of keeping the sugar cravings at bay. In fact, I’m having a hard time believing how much my cravings have diminished since I got the bike.  Wow, a lot.  I still want a piece of dark chocolate every once in a while, and I still want my HM WW Cornmeal bread, but other than that, I’m doing okay with the food (this week).

Working to revitalize my own recovery, I’ve moved some things off my reminder board at home and add the words: Be Intentional.  With that thought in mind, I’ve decided to share some of my intentions for this week here:

1. I will eat 1700 calories per day, or less.

2. I will report my food.

3. I will eat a Meatless Monday,  so that I am able to exercise my ability to make conscious food choices, regardless of what my appetite wants to do.  (half way through this goal as of my posting).

4. I will eat a No Wheat Wednesday, to cut down on that number of carbs I consume this week.

5. I will attend one support meeting this week, where I will be encouraged and encourage others.

That last intention is going to be easy for me to do, so I will add another.

6. I will be supportive and encouraging to someone who has chosen a different path from me in order to lose weight, and regain health and vitality in life, understanding that I do not always fully understand the struggles others face, but do know that no matter what struggles I face, they are made easier by the offer of a supportive voice and the desire to help.

Stay strong this week.

Trust yourself.

Have a plan, and keep putting one foot in front of the other.

I believe in you!

Game Plan Needed!!!

I need a new game plan.

This past weekend, the kiddos come down for a few days. That means 4 more people in the house, and on Saturday, we add another 4: That’s 8 in total for lunch on Saturday, in addition to our regulars. That’s a lot for this country gal who doesn’t do crowds, or feel confident as a hostess.

000pizza

Having that many additional mouths to feed at lunch time, I resorted to take out and ordered pizza and wings. I know, I know, not good. But I did not pig out on the stuff. I ate two small squares of pizza and two wings, and then called it a day. Rather, a meal. Still, this afternoon I am feeling defeated in my attempts to stay on track when others are in my home.

You can’t believe how quickly 32 pcs of pizza and 2 dozen wings can be inhaled!

I need a game plan that I can slip into place when these things happen. Any suggestions?

How do you stay on track when company comes and it’s mealtime? What do you do to balance out your eating when unexpected multitudes get added to the lunch time roster?

Picture Perfect Food

Finally, I got the camera to sync with the computer, so I thought I would post a few picture of what I ate Tuesday.

Breakfast was baked oatmeal with blackberries and walnuts.  This is how it looked dry.

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Baked Oatmeal is one of my favorite breakfast cereals/foods.  I used to make it all the time, but stopped because the recipes I was using were full of oil, and I do mean FULL of oil.  I didn’t want all those calories, and my liver didn’t like all those saturated fats.  This recipe uses milk, egg, and about 3T of butter to create a whole pan (8×8) of moist, flavorful, hot breakfast that fills the house with a cinnamon aroma and calls everyone to the kitchen.  Yum!

For lunch, I had a chicken wrap Panini at a nearby restaurant, while hubs had a spicy Panini sandwich.  No picture of that to share, but it was likewise yummy. I ate part of the pickle spear that came with the whole wheat wrap, but left the chips on  the plate.

I’m a sugar addict, so savory and salty don’t call my name.

For supper, I ate this…

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This is an 8 inch plate supper is served on, and the meal includes a half slice of whole wheat banana bread with mini chocolate chips, a handful of red grapes, a half cup of milk, and homemade stir fry, featuring cabbage, onion, bell pepper, garlic, potato, cauliflower, asparagus spears, chick peas, and tiny chunks of ham (about 1 cup to make 6 servings), with a lil bit of soy sauce over top.  I stir fried the veggies in a tablespoon of coconut oil, which is why it glistens so much.  The cup with the milk in it is a children size tumbler, so while it looks like there is more milk in it, it’s really only about 1/2 cup, maybe less.

I did 60 minutes on the bike after supper this night.  I was sore afterward, lower back issues, but it felt good to have gotten through the day with good eats and exercise behind me.  I was in bed by 10pm, and slept well.

I thought it would feel weird to blog about my food, and to share what I ate here, but it doesn’t feel that way.  At least not right now.  I’m trying everyday, to make changes that will last for a lifetime.  Learning how to portion my food, choose the right foods to heal my body, and abstain from eating too often can only benefit me in the long run.

What about you, what did you eat today?  Which foods make you feel full and satisfied? Which ones don’t?