Thursday, December 1, 2011

There is No Such Thing As a Free Lemonade

I'm pretty wiped out after a long day at work but just wanted to document a moment from my day.

I picked up take-out at this cute little vegan restaurant near the hospital that I am newly obsessed with - don't judge, it is really, really tasty. They are currently offering free homemade beverages with every entree as a customer service thing because they are in the middle of a construction project. They have Wild Berry Iced Tea sweetened with Agave, Lavender Lemonade and a Watermelon Aqua Fresca. Whoa, yum. I have tried all of them and they are delectable. But tonight I hesitated before reaching into the cooler for my drink of choice, it wouldn't really be free would it? I had consciously chosen a healthy restaurant, consciously chosen a healthy entree and I consciously decided to pass up the empty calorie drink. V-I-C-T-O-R-Y!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Super Elley

I went to our new gym for the first time today. We joined the legion of gym rats that flock to the Wal-Mart of gyms that is 24 Hour Fitness. It is funny what dictates which gym we belong to now versus what used to dictate to which gym we belonged. Here is a little breakdown of how we have chosen gyms over the years.

Evansville, IN Years : Plain and simple, we had one requirement - minuscule payments. We joined what was the dirt cheapest gym in the tri-state area, the Evansville YMCA. It was dirt cheap and possibly constructed from dirt. It was so crusty and cave like - it made me depressed just to enter the door. The thing I remember most about that gym was the ramp which descended towards the weight room, it had a paint-chipped blue hand rail. I tried purposely never to touch it. I attempted to do Body For Life there, the first of my many yo-yo dieting tries after getting married. I hated that freaking gym.

Carmel, IN Years : We upgraded to having three requirements - cheap, clean and windows to the outside world. Cardinal Fitness won our golden ticket. I remember my biggest beef with that gym was the lack of towels (they didn't supply them at all) and this weird lady who, and I swear I'm not exaggerating, was there all of the time. She had an over processed, over hair-sprayed eighties style do and she monopolized the 5 pound weights. She and my sister actually got into a car accident - she was not a nice lady. It's OK that I snap-judged her and her bad weightlifting technique.

Los Angeles, CA (B.C. - before children) : Sports Club LA won our hearts and our wallets. We affectionately referred to this mecca as Globo-Gym. It had everything we could ever want, a pleasant spa-like smell, cardio equipment with personal televisions, unlimited towels, amazing group classes, delicious protein shakes, eye candy, famous clientele, enormous locker rooms with free razors and luscious bathroom products. We actually cut back on our shampoo budget while we were there because sometimes I would go there just to sit in the jacuzzi and shower. It really is an amazing place, where I can honestly say I never once felt inspired. Alas, I got pregnant with Lucy and it was the first area we chose to save money. It was the easiest decision we ever made.

Los Angeles, CA (A.C. - after children) : Number one requirement, good childcare. I think my husband could workout in back lit alley if he had a fully charged ipod and some free weights. He's not so picky but, especially after being spoiled by the decadence of Globo-Gym, I wanted something better than an alley way. I didn't want to go back to the Evansville days of minimum payment, maximum torture. We settled on something middle of the road at Meridian Bodies in Motion. I loved this place and I have never, NEVER loved a gym. But I'm coming to realize that I may not have loved the gym itself. I love what I was able to accomplish there. It was the birthplace of my love to spin, it was where I poured sweat and tears successfully losing weight and being proud of my body - for the first time as an adult. Sadly, it was bought out by some disgustingly wealthy Persian guy who is tearing out the boxing ring and replacing it was 24 karat gold dumb-bells. We might have even stayed but they are closing their childcare service and we are no longer welcome. No kids allowed.

I must say, I was really nervous to switch gyms, but after today I just feel excited. This evening I had the best workout I've had in months. I kicked my own butt and it felt amazing. I still need something fancier than a back lit alley but I have finally come to realize that has never been about the bricks and mortar of the structure - it's about the bricks and mortar that I'm made of - and today... I felt like a woman of steel.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

How Now Ex-Cow

I've been hiding.

I'm super bummed... with myself.

I have lost zero pounds in the last 7 weeks.


There is something that I feel compelled to share and I'm not sure why. I think the not sharing of it is holding me back. You may have noticed that I have never stated what my actual weight is - I hide behind how much weight I have lost or not lost. I'm embarrassed, it is a big number. But the truth is I don't weigh that much anymore and I plan never to weigh that much again. But sometimes I think that the old number is somehow stamped on me - a 200 pound branded cow.

"Don't step on it, it makes you cry."

When I first saw this little comic I thought it was so funny, I even showed my husband. But tonight, staring at it while I write this, it just makes me so sad because it wasn't that long ago that, for me, it was not funny. It was true.

I know it sounds warped and disrespectful to compare myself to a cow. But that is exactly what I felt like at 200 pounds — like a big, fat cow.

I don't cry on the scale anymore. I don't talk to myself in that degrading nasty way anymore. I've done too much, I've come too far. Sometimes, I just wish that I could talk to myself 36 pounds ago and say - well, I'm not sure what I would say, but it would be something loving and gentle and accepting. It might even be, "I love you, and I promise, it is all going to be OK."

Facing the loss of these next 29 lbs is a huge challenge, I really need to buckle down and do a little bit more. For me to lose weight it takes an extreme amount of discipline. For the next week, I am going to blog every day - it might be a bit boring and food journal-ish, so in attempts to bother you less I am not going to send out email blasts. But, if you would check in on me that would be great. This is one of those times, I could really really use your help.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Up the Wazoos

My six best friends from high school and I came up with a name for our little group, one crisp autumn night freshman year at a sleepover. We proudly call ourselves the WAZOOS. It was complete cheesy genius. Each one of us was assigned a letter with a perfectly correlated word.

W- Wild
A- Ambitious
Z- Zesty
O- Open
O- Out of this World
S- Sexy

We took great care to select the words and for which one of us it described most - the idea being that all words described all of us. A nickname with perfect synergistic originality.

Adam and I took the girls home to the Midwest for the last half of October. The vacation was long overdue, and I can honestly say that I enjoyed every single minute of our trip - all 23,040 of them. I am really homesick. I could write this entire entry about all the things that I miss about being in Indiana, but that's not really what I wanted to focus on today. What I wanted to focus on is my goal to recapture the Danielle of the Midwest. If I were more of a Facebook status update person, my status everyday while I was in the Midwest would have said something like, "I wouldn't want to be anyone or anywhere else."

It was so nice to be reminded of who I am, really am. I felt jovial and competitive, generous and content, pretty and beloved, silly and fun, nurturing and carefree, safe and sound. It was the most brilliant time so far in my journey, having a moment when I realized that I still am who I used to be, in the best, most fresh way. 

You may or may not have guessed that my assigned word and letter in the WAZOOS is A-Ambitious. It's all very appropriate, don't you think? I have some very ambitious goals for myself these next few months. And, I do believe, in the words of Elton John, that the bitch is back.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How may calories are in humble pie?

If you asked me a year ago if I thought what I have done these last 6 months was possible, I would have said something really jaded like, "well, possible but not probable." I have lost 33.4 lbs. That is almost what my 3 year old daughter weighs. I have lost a toddler. Well, you know what I mean. 

So can anyone tell me then, why I am feeling so down trodden? I think I am having a mid-weight loss crisis. All I can think about is how far I left to go. All I can think about is even after having lost 33 lbs I am still overweight. In my head I've composed a little comic strip about this... I wish I could draw, it would make my image a lot easier to convey. But it goes something like this...

Picture a really sad, sweet-faced Danielle - like a female Charlie Brown, with more hair - standing at the top of a mountain. The side of the mountain at my back is steady, but slow steeping. It's covered in flowers and places to rest. The side of the mountain in front of me - the way down - is jagged, thick with brush and places to trip. The caption reads, "Damn, Miley Cyrus, why you gotta be right?"

This is an uphill battle.

I've been doing a very good job of feeling sorry for myself the last week or so. I'm tired. Work is exhausting. I need a vacation. I don't want to make dinner. The hallway smells. The girls have the pukes. I have laundry and dishes piled to the ceiling. Today about sent me over the edge. I got home and I was twitching like an addict - scouring my cabinets for chocolate, cooked pasta, cheese, any sort of full fat cheese, Doritos for heaven sake where is something calorie laden, fatty and BAD FOR ME?!?!?!?!

I couldn't find anything to satiate my fix (because in a moment of sanity months ago I had removed all of that crap). So what pulled me out of the crack house hunt? 1.) I remembered that The Biggest Loser Season 11 premier was tonight. 2.) I went outside to walk my dog. 3.) I called my sister. Otherwise known as 1.) Inspiration. 2.) Fresh air. 3.) Support.

I have been thinking about the word humble. I have been thinking about it in the "having or showing a modest or low estimate of one's own importance." and perhaps even in the "decisively defeat" way. I don't really like the word humble. For me, it conjures up images of someone meek and submissive - with a broken spirit, like Charlie Brown. I think I've been thinking about it wrong. Humble also means "not arrogant or haughty" (such a great word); "reflecting or expressing." It means everything this blog is about, it means not being to proud to ask for help.

Can someone serve me up a piece of humble pie? I've still got a long way to go.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Love, Loss, and What Size I Wore

The other day, I put on the skirt I wore to my mom's memorial service. In truth, it's kind of ugly. The clearance rack Express skirt is this weird poop brown color, it has awkwardly placed pockets and it hits me right below the knee - not such a good length when one stands at 5 feet 3 inches tall. I put it on because it's a size 10 and I've been trying on all of my size 10 garments to see if they fit.

Fit it did. 

My mom was so beautiful. She had the most dainty hands and feet. She had eyelashes so long that they brushed up against the lens of her glasses - which were bottle cap thick in attempt to correct her terrible eyesight.  She had great bone structure and muscularly toned legs. My mom's weight fluctuated a lot when I was growing up. I remember it being this huge thing between my parents. One year my dad had tried to bribe my mom with a trip to Hawaii if she lost a certain number of pounds. She did great but she fell just shy of her goal and the trip to Hawaii was cancelled. I think they went to Hilton Head instead. As a child this sent a pretty clear message to me - be skinny and you'll be showered with gifts, love and affection, be un-skinny and you'll receive a consolation prize. My food issues are deeply rooted. I grew up watching my mom struggle with her weight. I grew up watching my dad struggle with her struggle.

Why does it sometimes feel like we are doomed to repeat our parent's mistakes?

Lately, I've been having a lot of days that people have made me feel really good. I mean really good. I feel like my friendships are stronger than ever. I feel completely obsessed with my husband, like high-school-goofy-obsessed. I feel more excepted and loved than I can remember feeling in a long time.

And I think I had a break through... 

I am feeling this from other people because I'm feeling more excepting and loving of myself. A friend whipped out her camera to take a picture of me recently and I didn't cringe, I smiled and said "cheese!" I need a few progress photos anyway. I have lost 28.5 lbs to date. This is officially more weight than I have lost with any other attempt in my life.

My mom kept a collection of "fat pants" in her closet. Pants that didn't necessarily fit anymore or that had some kind of hideous stretch panel or MC hammer flair that she felt covered up any lumps, bumps or bloating she was feeling on her heavier days. Well, Mom... that buck stopped with you. I'm not carrying this nonsense into my future. No fat pants for me, I plan to continue to live my best life and I think you would be really proud of me.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

My Little Ghostesses

I realized that not all of my milestones are going to happen on the scale. This week I started running a 10 minute mile. Believe me, I know that isn't very fast. BUT, last year when I ran a half marathon I trotted along at more of a 12.5 minute mile. Hey, progress is progress! And while I've had another huge victory, finally down a pant size, I'm really struggling with ghosts of a fat girl past. A part of my "plan" continually lets me down - my free meal. Free meals usually play out with an internal dialogue that goes something like this...

Free Meal Night Danielle, "Wow, I've been working really hard, and I'm feeling super deprived. Perhaps I should splurge tonight - Adam, how do you feel about In-&-Out for dinner?"
In the drive-thru Danielle, "This is great, I'm living such a balanced life. A lot of discipline, a little naughtiness. Man, oh man, is this extra side of spread on my fries naughty!"
Post Food Coma Meltdown Danielle, "Oh my God, I just consumed an entire day's worth of calories in 15 minutes. Oh my God, I'm fat again. Why didn't I order my double-double protein style, or skip the fries, or get a smaller coke, or go without fries and without the coke? Oh my God, I should have had a salad. Oh my God, I am FREAKING OUT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What is wrong with me? There has only been one "free meal" where I have not had a complete and utter panic attack afterwards. And, no, free meals are not always In-&-Out or the like, sometimes it is Sushi dinner out with Adam or wine and cheese with a girlfriend. They aren't all crazy, but they make me feel crazy. Afterwards, I feel like I'm spiraling out of control. And I obsess. Oh, do I obsess. I obsess over whether or not I should journal it. I obsess about how accurately I can journal it. I obsess and obsess and obsess.

I think I need to kick the free meal to the curb.

Or do I?

What has become clear to me is that I have some very real issues with food, or real issues that I'm concealing with food. I have tried desperately to keep these issues hidden but my body betrays me. I read somewhere recently, "Your body keeps an accurate journal regardless of what you write down." Well, that has certainly been true for me. Last year, when Adam and I ran a half marathon together, I was running a lot, and while my legs and glutes kind of firmed up, I didn't really lose any weight. How is that possible? The fat girl ghost, I was haunted. 

There is a silly episode of Sex and the City about ghosts, real (ex-boyfriends coming back from the past) and imaginary. Samantha says that in order to get rid of the ghost, "you are suppose to acknowledge the ghost and then release it." 

The fact of the matter is that I will probably grapple with these issues for the rest of my life. But I am ready for these issues to stop running my life. It is exhausting. I just want us to have a healthy relationship. Actually, I want to stop having a relationship with food. I just want to think about food rationally, with common sense - calories in, calories out. I know I still have issues to wade through, I'm hoping to do more of that here. But for today, I simply want to acknowledge my ghost and tell it to, kindly, go the hell away.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Time for a Quickie

Check out that ticker on the right hand side of the screen peeps... down 22 pounds!!! When I hit the 20 pound milestone I rewarded myself with a couple of healthy, fat-free treats.  I had a massage - blissful relief for my nearly continuously sore muscles. And, I dragged my family to REI to help me purchase my first pair of SPD spin shoes. Lucy has a very instinctual eye for good shoes. She pointed to the most expensive pair and said, "Oh, mommy, I like those, they're so pretty!"

I've been cruising in a kind of maintenance-mode since the 22 pounds, you know, trying out recipes for "healthy cupcakes" and slacking on the food journal. I haven't lost anything in a week and a half. I think I needed a break from the militant-style-weight-loss-obsession-mode I was sporting. I went to visit my sister over the 4th of July, sans the blond pixies, and it was a huge treat and such a revitalizing few days.

The break was good. I need it. I feel glad that I took it. But, y'all, break's over.

I'm feeling rested, renewed, and ready to ramp it up. Plus, I have a play date at the beach in 5 weeks, and that "Dynamic Physique" class I've been meaning to try at the gym just might be the ticket to feeling cuter in my swim suit.

Until next time...

Here's a link to a blog I follow by a "30ish working mom with a passion for coming up with lite recipe ideas." It is chock full of fabulous ideas and a source of a lot of recent inspiration for me, even my healthy cupcakes. Check it out.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Some Inconvenient Truths

Here is the truth.

A.) I am down a total of 16 lbs.
B.) As of May 27 I was down a total of 17.2 lbs.
C.) Some simple algebra would tell us that if A + B does not = C or something like that, I wasn't a math major after all, some things went askew.

Perhaps now would be a good time to tell you what I am actually doing to try and achieve my goals. Well, simply, I am eating less and moving more. I am keeping a food journal, as I described, through an app on my iPad and iPhone - the Calorie Tracker on (a pretty gnarly site, by the way, thanks to Lance and his increased oxygen-carrying-capacity awesomeness). My goal calorie intake is 1260. I came to this number by filling out a questionare on the site about lifestyle, current weight and height and goal weight loss per week.

Another truth...

I don't really know with a hundred percent certainty if this calorie goal is really what I need to attain my goal, destination skinny jeans.

I am trying to eat very healthy - my "secret weapon" is shoveling some kind of raw green vegetable in my mouth whenever I am hungry and my mind starts wandering into some king of fantasy stupor where I, instead, shovel Nutella in my mouth by the spoonful. I am eating mostly at home, measuring out my portions, eating small frequent meals, keeping healthy snacks in my purse when I go out of the house to run errands and drinking lots of water. I am desperately trying to keep that yucky feeling of deprivation at bay by allowing myself a "treat" most days like a Skinny Cow ice cream treat or a 100 calorie milk chocolate bar from Trader Joes. I also do a "free meal" once a week. I usually try to save this for date night out at a restaurant (where it can be nearly impossible to correctly estimate calories anyway). For so many weeks The Plan was working beautifully, I was averaging at least 2 lbs of weight loss a week.

So what the hay happened?

I got sloppy. I didn't track my food - part circumstantial, part laziness. I didn't exercise enough. I made too many excuses for poor choices.

The truth...

I felt frustrated and disappointed in myself. Because, I'm not sloppy and I'm not lazy - why was I allowing myself to treat my body this way? UGH, UGH, double UGH!!!

The truth...

This is really hard. And I'm mostly doing a great job. I've had some people (randoms that aren't blog followers) ask me if I have lost weight. So, some loss must be evident, but so far I can't tell. I don't see anything different in the mirror, I'm still wearing the same size I was 16 lbs ago. I think that some physical evidence of all of this work would help me a little bit in the motivation department.

Last truth for today...

My slip-ups were all last week and I should have blogged about them then. I probably needed help, but I suppose I didn't want to own up to it all. I recovered this week and am back on track, doing my thing. I hope I don't have to wait too much longer before I can reward myself by pulling out those perfectly pressed pair of jeans I haven't worn in two years.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

One Republic for Which I Ran

I have a new favorite song. Actually, thirty minutes ago I think it transitioned from being my new favorite song into being my new mantra. I played this song five times during my run tonight. I was exhausted putting on my tennis shoes, exhausted only because I had an absolutely wonderful day, a day chock full of nourishing dear and precious friendships, running errands with my sister and playing with my daughters. It was a great day. And the last thing I wanted to do to conclude it was run.

But run I did.

And I did so by simply placing one foot in front of the other - right, right, right, right, left, right, right, right, right, left, right, right, right, I kept marching on.

Thank you, One Republic for your beautiful lyrics. How did you know what I wanted to say?

There’s so many wars we fought,
There’s so many things we’re not,
But with what we have,
I promise you that,
We’re marching on,
(We’re marching on)
(We’re marching on).

This is the beginning of the chorus to the song, and I love it so much because sometimes I can become very fixated on all of the things that I am not. Wow, there are so many things that I am not. I'm not perfect, in fact I say, far more often than I should, that I don't really even feel as though I am great at anything. I feel good at a lot of things, but great... I am not. Ugly, defeatist self talk, I know. I'm trying to demolish thoughts like this and I'm doing a much better job, but focusing on things that I am not is a trap I very easily fall into. There is a compellingly unifying power about joining someone in a fight for something... a fight for freedom, a fight for life. My fight may be microscopic on the spectrum of contests, but here in my corner of the room, it feels like a really big battle. But, I promise you that... I'll keep marching on.

We’ll have the days we break,
And we’ll have the scars to prove it,
We’ll have the bonds that we save,
But we’ll have the heart not to lose it.

For all of the times we’ve stopped,
For all of the things I’m not.

We put one foot in front of the other,
We move like we ain’t got no other,
We go when we go,
We’re marching on.

I've been thinking about game changers. Poignant moments, dates in my history that changed the course of my life forever.
1.) June 1992 - the summer I had brain surgery after a freak softball accident - game changer. It's when I knew I wanted to practice medicine. It was also a moment in my life that I really learned to lean on God.
2.) August 1995 - I was twelve and I met my husband - game changer. But it wouldn't be until 1999 that I thought of him as anything but a slightly awkward, skinny genius that talked too fast.
3.) September 11, 2001 - game changer for everyone, but for me it was the day that I went from wanting to "practice medicine" to knowing I was absolutely, without a doubt, meant to be a nurse.
4.) April 7, 2005 - the day my mom died - game changer, in every way possible. And that was a time that I absolutely survived by putting one foot in front of the other.
5.) April 24, 2008 and December 27, 2009 - the birth dates of my two babies. It was these dates that changed everything that had changed before them.
My hope is that I can add April 26, 2011 to that list. It was the day I really committed to this blog, the day I asked for your help. I'll tell ya, twenty-five days in... it feels like a game changer.
The last two weeks I've lost exactly two pounds each. This is keeping exactly with my goal weight loss of two pounds a week. You'll notice the weight loss ticker I added on the right hand side of the screen. This is my total weight loss from the beginning of the year, when I actually started the blog (although I didn't share it with anyone). So with 14.4 pounds down and 50.6 to go - you know what I'm gonna do.... keep marchin' on.

And if you have any killer workout songs, feel free to suggest. I'd love some more mantras.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Un-Wed War

For about the last one and a half years I've been un-married. Meaning, I haven't been wearing my wedding or engagement rings. Being un-married isn't what it is cracked up to be, you'd think people would look at me with some pity, "oh, that poor single mom struggling with two toddlers, perhaps I'll chase down that cart full of Trader Joe's groceries speeding away from the trunk of her car." There has been none of that. And I'm certainly not getting hit on more by random guys, unless you count the homeless dude at the Westwood Parks and Rec Center yelling profanity as I walked by, and I don't. I miss wearing my rings. I miss having that cute little tan line on the ring finger of my left hand which proclaims "I'm taken." I love being married to my husband. I love it. So, one may ask, why then are you un-married? My rings do not fit. Not even a little bit. I shoved my ring on (with the help of windex and some glycerin soap) for some family portraits we had taken back in November. Poor choice. I nearly had to have someone saw off my finger to return the blood flow. And you can't even see my ring in any of the pictures! What a waste. Comfortably donning my rings again, without having to get them re-sized is a goal of mine. There have been countless numbers of times that I've nearly taken it to a jeweler so I could wear it now. I probably should have done so. But there always comes a knee jerk, "NO!!! You can do it. You can lose the finger fat. I believe. I believe. I believe." And as the "I believes" start to crescendo, I believe it too. I do realize that after having two babies a slight adjustment might need to be made (I hear my mommy friends comments already) and I'm completely willing to re-size my ring, if after having reached my goal weight loss it still fits uncomfortably. But, for now, the chanting I hear, the "I believe," chorus, it sounds a lot more like my voice.

I am very happy to share that since my last blog post I have lost 6.2 lbs. WOW!!! I'm not really even doing anything all that crazy. You have been the difference. Your offers to walk on the beach with me or run and hike with me or do yogahop with me, your conscious effort to use ground turkey in chili rather than ground beef when I come over, your calls and emails and hugs and excitement and follows have been the difference. I love that when I choose apples over bread rolls or green beans over cheese dip that I feel good. You are part of that choice. In my moments of real weakness, and even floating on this high of love and support and faith you have placed in me to reach these goals, I feel absolute moments of pure weakness, I gain power from you. Thank you for the magic of your love, it has pulled me up by my boot straps and I feel really, really good.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

A Recruitment Letter of Sorts


I need your help. Let me rephrase that, I desperately require your assistance. I am in the need of your aid.

I have found myself alone, powerless, lost and literally swallowed whole by my excess weight. I don't feel like myself. I feel depressed. I feel humiliated. I am scrapping the bottom of my willpower barrel. I may go so far as to say that I have no willpower left, I am most definitely in a slump. A slump that I like to refer to as "my twenties." Now, those of you who know me well know that I've been through a lot since I first turned 20 years old, and I'm sure more of that will be examined here through the next several months, but what I want to make absolutely clear here is that I refuse, flat out refuse to waste another decade of my life, year of my life, month of my life, day of my life in this state of unhappiness. I am in the process of un-slumping myself. And as my friend Dr. Seuss likes to say, "when you're in a a Slump, you're not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done."

Short of joining Overeaters Anonymous (I almost did) or paying for a support system through Weight Watchers (which I also almost did) I decided to customize my own program and utilize the support system I already have in place, you my family and friends. This means coming clean, exposing myself in a way that is both excruciatingly embarrassing and at the same time extremely liberating. I am terrified. I'm scared that no one will read this, I'm scared that everyone will read it. I'm afraid that when you read it you might just roll your eyes or make fun of me. I'm terrified that even once exposing myself that I'll still feel alone, powerless and lost. I fear that no one will celebrate with me or help keep me accountable. Make no mistake, this is a weightloss blog, if that just ain't your cup of tea, I get it. Please only continue to read this if you can join me in my weightloss journey and help me in positive, productive loving ways. I have enough negativity to combat already, I don't need more. My hope is that this space will be a place for me to come say what I need to say - lay out my goals and my plans to achieve them, document my progress, learn from what I do and what I leave undone. My hope is that this will also be a place that you will come to check in on me. I hope that you will share with me - your thoughts, words of encouragement and stories of your own.

I have a hope that I am not nearly as alone, powerless and as lost as I feel.

If my letter of recruitment has moved you (meaning my propaganda was effective, ah ha!) please join as a follower of my blog. Doing so is easy, simply click on the FOLLOW tab to the right and follow the instructions. Let me know if you have difficulties, I'll try to help. I'm not sure how often I plan to post on here, my minimum is once a week, maybe more. We'll see. I am just so thankful for your help.

"And will you succeed?
Yes! You will indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)


be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O'Shea,
you're off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So... get on your way!"

- Oh, the Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss

Sunday, March 6, 2011

There is No Try

1.) Drink only water.
2.) Never eat alone.
3.) Eat sitting down, at a table.
These are my simple attainable goals for the week, they probably even seem silly. They only seem silly because you don't know how brilliant they are... these three goals directly and yet discreetly attack some of my most prohibitive habits - drinking my calories. OK, obvious. Eating by myself or in secret, embarrassing but true. (Plus, besides being my goal of the week and new weight loss accountability technique, "Never Eat Alone" is the revolutionary secret to success, one relationship at a time according to Keith Ferrazzi - Harvard MBA, son of a steelworker and networking extraordinaire.) And these goals help to combat my DLS, Diane Lane Syndrome. Let me explain, Diane Lane was in a very bad film, Must Love Dogs, in the movie, she's at a grocery store deli counter ordering a single chicken breast. When she requests only one chicken breast the clerk politely suggests that she order more so that she can take advantage of the sale price, at first she declines but the clerk persists, gently trying to help her take advantage of the daily special, to which she charmingly and hysterically melts down and says, "I usually eat alone, most of the time standing over the kitchen sink, I don't want a bunch of extra chicken lying around!"
I have been feeling defeated. A little beaten down by some mishaps and maladies over the last month and full on just peeved at myself for losing control. I need some help. I need some support. I need some success.
Success I will have.
I am emerging from the dark side, taking only what I bring with me. I believe, that is why I succeed.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Feeling Heavy

"If you've ever been fat, you will either be fat for the rest of your life or you will worry about being fat the rest of your life." I came across those words 20 years ago in the play "Fighting International Fat," by Jonathan Reynolds. A pretty obscure place to find the underlying thesis of your waking life, but one doesn't get to choose. That casual observation struck me with the profound power of its obvious truth, much like Kafka's observation, "The meaning of life is that it ends." Kafka did not then add, "...but once you're dead, you won't gain weight." Which I would have found comforting. -- Peter Sagal

I read this in Runner's World Magazine on Saturday (at work, out of boredom) and I haven't been able to stop thinking about it. This is the verbalization of my greatest fear. This will never be completely over, I will be struggling with this my whole life. 
Makes me feel heavy.  

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

A Still Small Voice

I am a very conscious eater... I painstakingly plan out the meals I prepare for my family, I labor over healthy cookbooks and recipes on that look simple, healthy and delicious. I chose ingredients diligently at the grocery store or farmers market – often examining 2 or 3 pints of strawberries before I find one with uniform berries of the right shape, scent and ripeness. I keep a variety of healthy snacks on hand, I do my best to buy local and organic when possible. I'm good at these things, I take pride in them. Until I don't.
On a whim, or strategically planned outing where I'll happen to pass by the drive-thru Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, I'll grab a Large White Chocolate Iced Latte. Conscious thought, yes, conscious eating, no. I unconsciously just consumed 490 calories.
This is why I've chosen to keep a food journal, it forces me to be conscious, present and accountable  for the calories I consume. I'm currently using an ipad application calorie counter which I've nicknamed Jiminy Cricket. It is a very helpful tool, when I utilize it. For the last two weeks I haven't had access to my food journal and you'd think I'd lost my damn mind. I've been eating things I would never eat if I had to write them down – what like if there is no record, it didn't happen? The problem with Jiminy Cricket is that he can only help when he's around to get you out of trouble. I can't use my food journal as a crutch, it has to be what it is... a tool. A tool designed to help me be a more conscious eater. The thing is, when food is your problem, the way it is for me, it is also the solution. It will save me or it will kill me. And I'm not necessarily talking about death in most disastrous of ways (though it will do that too) but I'm saying that feeling bad about myself, feeling fat and undesirable and useless and tired and ugly and lumpy and gross kills me. I'm embarrassed about the way I look and feel and the poor choices I make – consciously or unconsciously. So Jiminy Cricket, you ain't my crutch anymore. I may use you, but I will not rely on you. You are just too damn flaky.

A third generation bag lady's road to healing. Destination, Disneyland. Costume, skinny jeans.

I am a third generation bag lady. That means I love bags. Handbags in
particular, but I don't stop there. Diaper bags, cosmetic cases, Ziplocs, luggage,
wallets, reusable grocery sacks... I have a slight thing for them. But it is
hereditary... hence the third generation part. My mother and her mother before
her all had a thing for bags. My grandmother is still alive - my mother, Deborah, is not.
Hence the healing part.

In high school, a friend of mine cavalierly compared my relationship to my,
then boyfriend, now husband, to a trip to Disneyland. It was... magic, romance
and fantasy. Our relationship is still solid. I love him more now than I ever
have, but we've grown-up together and the magic has been revealed. The romance
is more scheduled and the fantasy has been dampened by voting and paying bills
and raising two babies, punching the time-card, moving a away from home and
chasing the Hollywood dream. We've come to use this term... destination
Disneyland, as our personal coined phrase of what it means to be our best

Skinny jeans aren't really a look I can rock right now. I am overweight. I
have not always been and I plan not always to be. In fact, the juxtapose behind
this whole site launch is my plan to get this under control. I have lost weight
before and actually before I started typing the entry to this blog I have lost 8.8
pounds since the new year but I need this to be it. The time. I need to
examine my life in a way that makes me see why I have let myself get to a point
where I need to lose 65 pounds. And more importantly help me to fashion myself
mind, body and spirit into the thin person I will be when those pounds are gone.
I have a feeling we are going to be very good friends. The good, bad and the
necessarily ugly will come out here.

I am scared and hopeful and ready.