TGT mast head

As I write my post for today, it is with extreme appreciation for the gifts I have been given and the opportunities I share them with others. I drove to Wellsboro, PA today to speak with a group of MOPS moms about self-confidence before heading into the office.

I know. You’re thinking You?

I was thinking that, too. Me, Lori, speaking on the topic of confidence and indecision, and suggesting ways to push back the procrastination that keeps us in bondage to the same old failed systems day after day, after miserable day.

I shared with the ladies about my Three Goals Thursday experiment.

There were about fifty women in attendance, ranging from young moms to seniors. They were a fun group!

I loved the opportunity I was given today to speak on such an important subject to women. Many were able to relate to what I shared. One asked me if I counsel others? :/

I told her I don’t, but I listen well.

Another gave me a hug and said she has made her own list of likes and dislikes this year, her first venture into teaching people how to treat her—a favorite habit of mine. She shared how hard it is to change, but how much satisfaction she is finding in learning what she likes and what she doesn’t like, and how to effectively communicate all that to the important people in her world. I shared with her my understanding that in the beginning there is a lot of blow-back when we change. Folks who have always known us want us to behave the way we always have with them, but we can’t anymore. It’s hard on them and hard on us, but change is so worth it!

I could go on and on about how exciting today’s time with those Moms Of PreschoolerS (MOPS meeting), was for me, but I have a set of goals to talk about and some new goals to set for this week so I guess I best get to it.

MY THREE TEENY, TINY GOALS FOR LAST WEEK

1 Continue exercising in the morning, 16-18 minutes in duration each day.

2 Add to my morning routine 5 minutes of bike time in the evening. I’m keeping this purposefully teeny, tiny, so I know I can actually do it with all the sore muscles lately.

3 Take a 3-pronged approach to food accountability this week. What that means is that I will count calories one day, meal plan one day, and count sugar intake one day this week. I will not do these all on the same day, but will dedicate 3 days to better planning; an homage to my 3 Goals Thursday initiative.

HOW DID I DO?

First off, I think I offended someone this week by being sugar-starved me. SUGAR IS MOST CERTAINLY A MOOD-ALTERING DRUG!  What I shared with this other was raw, unfiltered, frustration with the dieting process and my part in it. I hope I wasn’t mean when I shared, I don’t think I was, but the frustration was easy to recognize in what I said.  Sometimes I think people don’t understand how hard it is for some body types to shed the pounds. Lots of folks know how addictive sugar is, but if they aren’t addicted themselves I’m not sure they understand how it alters brain chemistry. How hard it makes it to kick that habit.  Maybe they do, and I just whine a lot.  It’s possible!  This week my last nerve was struck and I reacted.  Not the best of strategies, and as I said, it did knock me off my game with my goals, so I’m hoping not to do that again.

What was it momma taught us: If you don’t have anything good to say, say nothing at all?  Lesson learned.

MY PROGRESS REPORT

Goal No. 1: FAIL.   Big Fail. On Sunday I quit the exercising that has been causing me so much pain. I could not do it anymore. Sooo, from Sunday until today, I have not done my morning exercises. I feel bad about that, emotionally, but my body feels so much relief. I am on the hunt for a new type of exercise that I can do that won’t hurt so much, but in the meantime I will count Goal No. 1 as a fail this week. Boo!

Goal No. 2 SUCCESS!  I exerciseD on the bike each night this week, and once or twice in the morning. I kept my sessions short, but got my five minutes in each day.  Yay!

Goal No. 3 AWESOME! I frankly can’t believe I did as well as I did on Goal No. 3, but I did really well!  Yay, me! I also discovered that it doesn’t take much sugar to exceed your sugar allowance when your calorie count is low. Not much at all! My meal planning day went better than expected, and on the day I counted calories, 1553 of them buggers went in my pie hole and down the shoot. Not too shabby. I feel good about the completion of this goal.

THREE NEW TEENY TINY GOALS

This week I am going to set my goals around FUN ways of being active without hurting myself. I am also going to do some exploring, re: exercise options.

Here are my goals for this coming week…

1 Call the Y and the BW in my area to check on swimming options.

2 Plan meals 2 x this week, and count calories 2 days this week. Try to eat enough less that I am hungry before I get to the next week.

3 Talk to a professional about putting together a workable plan for losing 10 lbs before summer.

These are admittedly small goals for this week, but that’s the point of TGT.  It’s all about setting goals small enough that they are easily achievable and can be easily completed. Keeping those fingers crossed and doing my part to make sure they get done this week.

Do you regularly eat so little that you’re famished by the time you get to your next meal? How do you do that?!

The Room

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Last night I met with my sistahs in The Room.

We talked about The Plan.

We talked about The Power.

We talked about procrastination…

Cooperation…

Being on time…

Outside interference…

We talked about having a goal, and making that goal preeminent.

What would it take to align our lives with our goal, not waiting for “something” to happen, but planning for it to occur…working to make it so…putting our “all” into that thing that we hope, wish, and dream about?

Delay gets us nowhere.

Resisting is worse than delay.

A new year is about to begin.

If not now, when?

So much to think about. So much!

What are you hoping for, but not planning for at this time in your life?  What do you need to do to move out of the planning stage and into action?

Three Goals Thursday

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Today is Thursday, so its time again to report on my three teeny, tiny goals for this week.  Before I do though, I wanted to comment on the graphic attached to this post.  I wanted to say how grateful I am to have found a way to exchange temporary discomfort for long-term health.

I call that “way” HABIT!

Through planning and practice, I am finding a way to make my dream of getting healthy a reality.  It was hard at first to change my lifestyle–can still be difficult sometimes, I won’t lie–but lil by lil I feel like I’m gaining ground and learning to live for the long-haul, and not some string of temporary food “highs”.  I’m psyched about the habits that are forming in my life and encouraged to try new things every day. Who knows, that exercise I try today may become one of my favorite forms of movement tomorrow.

Who knows, indeed?

My three teeny tiny goals for this week were to eat oatmeal every day for breakfast, exercise for 10 minutes each morning before doing anything else, and meditate for 5 minutes each day while seeking a better understanding of why I am resistant in some areas of my life and program.

I feel pretty good about the progress I have made this week.

I ate oatmeal five out of seven days this week.  I exercised for ten minutes every day this week, and I meditated for five minutes in the morning every day, as well. In fact, some days I both exercised and meditated longer than planned.

Excellent!

One thing I am finding as I’m eating the oatmeal is that my weight has gone up a lil. Is that because of the oatmeal with walnuts every morning, reflective of other eating I am doing, or mere water retention???  Let’s hope it is not due to inflammation caused by the exercise.  I don’t think it is. One thing that has always stumped me in the past is that whenever I begin an exercise program I seem to GAIN weight.  What???!!!!  You heard me right, every time, and it is discouraging, but…

I will not give up!

Repeat: I will not give up exercising every morning.

Even though I have gained some weight over the past few weeks (3-4 lbs depending on the day), I also know that my clothes are fitting looser and I am more energetic, in part because I begin my morning with blood rushing through my veins.

Also, kinda ironic, but chuckle-worthy is the fact that our message at church this week was on hearing God.  I smiled when I heard that was the topic, because not only had I put meditation on my list of goals this week, but we had talked about it in our discussion time before service.  Was that message just for me? I doubt it.  I think many found it relevant and timely, even if they had not included meditation in their Action Plan or Goal List for the week.

My Three Teeny, Tiny Goals for this week:

1. 11 minutes of exercise each morning.

2. Oatmeal for breakfast each morning.

3. 7 minutes of meditation each morning.

Additional Observations:

I think that the success I am seeing with my goals, teeny tiny as they may be, is that I am accomplishing them first thing in the morning each day. When I started these goals, I knew I needed to get up earlier each day if I was going to do this, but I was hesitant to leave my bed before I absolutely had to in the morning. I’m still that way.  Maybe that will change down the road, or it might not, but I am convinced that it is the habit of getting these things done early in the day that is helping me meet my goals each week.

I toyed with the idea of not doing these things first thing in the morning, but that has been a problem for me in the past. The longer I delay, the less likely I am to do what I have said I will do, so early mornings it is, for now anyway.

Do you find yourself waiting to tackle those nasty jobs each day, or do you like to do them first thing?  What is your favorite time of day, and why do you like it more than other times?

5 Steps to Weight Loss and 1 Magic Elevator

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When I first began to lose weight and get healthy, people noticed. Some were happy for me.  Others were not.  Some supported me, while others thought my methods were insane.  Some tried to sabotage my efforts.  Others watched silently, probably thinking, “give her enough time and she will gain it all back.”

To be sure, I had lost and gained back weight a hundred times before. 

To their credit, these others had no idea that my thinking was different this time. I wanted more than to lose weight.

I wanted to walk up a few stairs without stopping.

I wanted to play in the yard with my kids.

I wanted to exercise without becoming instantly discouraged.

I wanted to escape problems with GERD and reflux disease.

I wanted to stop being tired all the time.

I wanted to reclaim my life.

Before, I kept waiting for the time to be “right” to lose weight.  Now, I was done with waiting.

Before, I imagined in my head that the motivation to lose weight would come to me like a magic elevator that comes to your floor in a make-believe hotel.  I would wait and wait, and wait, and one day the elevator would stop on my floor and I would get on.  When it did, losing weight would be a breeze–as easy as riding down a few floors on that magic elevator.  As the floors rushed by, the pounds would miraculously melt off.

That was before I lost 100 lbs!

What I know now is that weight loss doesn’t come to you by magic means.

You go to it!

You make it happen! 

You help you to grow and learn, and do.

Using that dream I had about the magic elevator to make my point, imagine that a weight loss elevator has become your mode of transportation from where you are now and where you want to be.  Even if you had a magic elevator, there are still a few things you would have to do to make that elevator work for you.

5 Necessary Steps to Weight Loss Success with a Magic Elevator  

  1. Decide you want to leave your floor.
  2. Know where the elevator can be found.
  3. Push the button to call the elevator to your floor.
  4. Get on the elevator.
  5. Stay on the elevator until you reach the lobby.

Before, I thought weight loss was 99% motivation, so I waited patiently for motivation to find me.  Now I see that getting healthy, becoming strong, and growing up to be someone who is determined means setting a course for myself that brings long-lasting results and does not depend on passive waiting.

Action turns motivation into results! 

What will you choose, plan, or do today to make sure you realize your goal of getting healthy and staying that way?  In what areas do you need to grow your confidence to make your dreams a reality?

Lunch

000rawfood

Raw peppers, cukes, carrot stix, and grapes.

1/2 cup cottage cheese.

2 small pepperoni slices.

2 tbsp low fat caesar dressing.

Water to drink.

That was lunch.

This morning I had the first coffee I have had this week.  Had the first bite of bagel all week, too. Neither were all that satisfying, neither were finished.

I’m beginning to work out the hows and whys of doing what I am willing-but-not-wanting to do in my life. 

Met with a girlfriend last night. We talked about super foods, super carbs, exercise routines, eating on vacation, and the rationalizations that kick in whenever we try to regulate ourselves through fasting; fasting of any kind.

Habit is so powerful!

She is trying to fast regarding unnecessary buying. I am trying to fast regarding unnecessary carbs.  We did pretty well this week. She bought something (2 somethings) that were on sale, using birthday money (which doesn’t really count as budget money buying, right?).  I went a whole work week without my morning breakfast of carbs and coffee.  I fasted from any kind of food or drink during breakfast for three of those days.

I came home from last night’s get-together with a renewed energy regarding food planning and goal setting. I also came home with a rather large chart–THE chart she used to lose 30 lbs last year.  I haven’t decided where to hang it yet–its big–but I will hang it. I’m beginning to realize that I need more tangible proof of my efforts, and more of a consistent reminder that I have a goal, that I need to focus on that goal, and that I need to celebrate the milestones reached along the way.

This process is so, so, so humbling!

I don’t want to expand the waistline of this post too much, so I’ll leave it at that right now.  Have a great weekend everyone!

What tangible proof can you point to when assessing if you are moving closer to a goal you have set for yourself?  Who helps keep you motivated and honest along the way to your goal?

Spring Cleaning My Mind

000spring cleaningYesterday, I wrote about the sale our church is sponsoring the first week of May and it got me thinking about what I need to thin out in my life in order to continue recovering from food addiction.  Things are going well for me right now.  I’ve finally broken through the plateau that has kept me stagnant for nearly eighteen months.  I almost hate to write that last bit of news, because I’m tempted to think that if I put this bit of good news in writing it will all disappear.  Silly, superstitious brain!  You’re not in control of me.  Stop suggesting such things.

Stepping away from my inner talk for a minute, I wanted to share with you some of the attitudes, behaviors, habits and rationalizations that I’ll be tossing this spring in order to make room for recovery:

1. Foggy Thinking. Foggy thinking is a habit that often trips me up. It occurs when I forget to plan, or worse yet, refuse to plan because I am: lazy, wallowing, denying, resisting, self-sabotaging, or being lazy. See how I listed laziness twice. Not a mistake, I assure you. This spring, I’m dealing with foggy thinking by working with a friend to create a plan, report on that plan, and confront my resistance to the plan. Its the only way I know to keep a lazy cheater (me), focused and on task. Planning helps to dissipate the fog bubble I get caught in when I don’t look ahead.

2. A Hard Heart. Rebellion and defiance are attitudes I’ve courted too often in the past. Who did I think I was kidding when I allowed a defiant attitude to sneak into the attic of my head and squat there? When I defy the truth, I self-deceive and that makes me angry. Spring is a great time to come clean with myself. Me and me, we need to work together to get this thing done. Enough rebellion–just do what you know you need to do, Lori, and stop telling yourself you don’t need to do it.

3. Bad Choices that “feel” Good: Double Portions–Too Many Deserts–Too Much TV. Not everyone struggles with behavior problems, but most over eaters do. This spring, I’m dealing with three of my worst. The biggest offender and the one that needs my undivided attention is my propensity to watch too much television. I have to act in a purposeful way to limit my TV viewing as spring comes calling. It feels good to get off the couch and outside, so I need to think about that feeling often and draw on it for inspiration.

4. Insane Bargaining Skills. I can rationalize to oblivion given enough time to think and enough reasons to avoid doing what I ought to do. Let’s face it, we over eaters get really good at rationalization over the course of our gaining years. It’s time to get real and be truthful with myself. This final problem is a sneaky one, a shady character, so I have to stay vigilant looking for it in myself. Writing helps me to see rationalizations more clearly, so I’m working on my journaling skills these days.

What do you need to move out of the attic of your mind in order to get better?  What one thing is currently spelling success for you in your efforts to lose weight and get healthy?

Be Encouraged!

Sometimes on the way to our goal, we slip, fall, trip, get tossed around, receive a few bruises, and experience some bumps and dings, but that’s okay.  Just because we fall down doesn’t mean we won’t get back up again.

We will!

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We may need some beagle stickers to bind our wounds or encourage our spirits, but that’s okay.  Beagle stickers are easy to come by, and so adorable.

Here’s the thing:  When we regain our composure after a fall, when we find renewed determination to meet that goal, our ability to grab that brass ring and have that life we have envisioned for ourselves will be realized.  All we really need to do is keep on, keeping on.

One day at a time.

One goal at a time.

Broken up into baby steps.

With friends to cheer us on.

And a plan in place.

We WILL get there!

We will overcome!!!!

What goal are you reaching for these days?  Are you encouraged, or frustrated as you work to achieve it? What one thing can you add to your plan today that will help you in pursuit of that goal?  When will you begin again?