Day Two Hundred Forty…

So when faced with a choice to get home from work and immediately start my evening routine, I chose kindness instead. I decided to go for a walk with Sadie and my hubby. We took a brisk walk and talked about our days. We had a good conversation and just being outside together really helped us to feel, good.

While walking I turned my gaze outward to admire big beautiful bunches of bright yellow daffodils (my favorite) songbirds and the beautiful sky. I made a conscious decision to be fully present. Although the spring air was a bit windy and cold it was exhilarating. I made a point of not taking out my phone to snap pictures because I wanted to focus on the experience itself.

On another note, I was pretty hungry today! After some reflection, I decided to eat an “emergency Kind bar” (no pun intended) on my ride home. It was six points, so it was more than I wanted to use but I was truly hungry. Then, after my walk, while I was packing and pre-tracking my breakfast and lunch for tomorrow,  I was still very hungry. This is what I ate: one cup of popcorn (I measured it), a halo, 1/4 cup of pistachios, an apple (it was very tiny like the size of a big crabapple) and a turkey roll up. Some days are like that on the journey, some days you will be hungry and the best thing to do on those days is to eat a little more. The only thing, at least for me, is to measure, and track and eat and see how I feel.

Sometimes, that’s the best I can do – I just have to keep giving my best to this and eventually, I’ll get to goal. This is true for me, and it’s also true for you. More tomorrow…

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Nine…

Sometimes a goal will just find me. On Friday, I was brainstorming ideas for goals that would challenge me.  I considered mindful eating, practicing mediation every other day, or to try a new class at the gym. Well, you get the idea…

Kindness

Practicing kindness is our focus this week.  At first, I thought about making this week’s goal focus on doing random acts of kindnesses.  However, it’s been my experience that people like me, who struggle with weight and a desire to live a healthier lifestyle, tend to put themselves and their needs second to others. Does this sound familiar to any of you? So then I wondered, how can I practice kindness if I’m not actively being kind to myself? As strange as this sounds I feel guilty just writing that down in this post! Yet, I would never suggest to anyone that they feel guilty for being kind to themselves.

 

If the reason why we set goals is to help us to grow, then a goal should not always feel so comfortable.  This is why I think I my goal this week needs to be practicing self-compassion. Each day I’m going to post an image and explanation of the kindness I did for myself. I am thinking of it as a daily artifact of kindness or self-care. Today’s featured image,  going to spin class, is an artifact of me being kind to myself. I really enjoy spin, it helps me to feel better both mentally and physically.  As I prepared to go, I consciously thought about how this was an act of kindness and that made me feel more connected to needs of others, as I did to my own.  My inner voice took a kindness stance and reinforced the decision to go, and how it was a positive thing not just for me but also for the people who care about me.

If you read my blog, you might be wondering, “She always goes to spin what’s so different about that?” The difference is to practice the conscious effort to think of going and why I go as an act of kindness. It’s about not taking anything for granted and to hold some gratitude in my heart. It feels better to think this way.  Now I’m wondering something, What do you think? What would kindness turned inward do for you? I hope you will consider joining me on this week’s goal.  Try it out with me be kind to yourself each day and see if it makes a difference.

 

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Eight…

This week’s results are in…

April 28th

My sister and my friend also lost .6 this week too. My friend was a little disappointed with her loss though. If it’s all about the number then I can see how it might be disappointing at the beginning of the journey.  My journey is not defined by the number on the scale. It’s not because I am so happy with how I’m feeling I’m just so happy to be in control, knowing  I’m changing my life as I  make progress on my way to goal.

Words of Wisdom Bonnie
Bonnie is my Weight Watchers leader and she does an amazing job inspiring everyone to stay on plan

I am feeling different, I feel physically lighter these days. This fantastic feeling is a result of months of effort. I have to thank other Weight Watchers members for this. Each week I attend my meeting and this one was amazing. We began with a great conversation about how to make good compromises to stay on plan. Here are some tips from members:

  1. Make a behavioral change go to your bedroom at night so you remove yourself from food.
  2. Using Hearts of Palm Linguini to save points (0sp)
  3. Cutting back on some foods and eating more of others. For example, have two eggs and one slice of toast.
  4. Write point values on the box or a post-it so you are more informed before you eat.
  5. Use your journal to look back on your eating pattern

Being part of my Weight Watchers community, writing these posts, and practicing self-care are all strategies for my successful weight loss. Even though I’m making it happen, I know that I couldn’t do this alone. There are so many wonderful supportive people in my life. I’m also so happy to be that person for others as well. Together we can accomplish our goals just believe it and then it will happen.

 

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Seven…

Improvise. Making something from whatever is available can be kind of wonderful. After a long day at work, and rainy ride home, my daughter and I made a really delicious dinner out of some random foods I had in the house:

At just 4sp this shrimp stir fry was amazing. We had a nice time just chatting and cutting up vegetables and sauteeing shrimp. Since I’ve been living the Weight Watchers plan, these are the kinds of foods buy, so all this healthy food was just available and that made the difference.

Big Magic Quote

Here are some reflections on my week, I met a number of my goals:

  • I stayed within my points range all week except Wednesday I was a little under.
  • I went to spin three times and earned 51 fit points and I am feeling stronger.
  • I monitored my external/internal hunger cues (I’m getting better at that)

Brainstorming potential goals for next week:

  • Practice mindful eating one meal a day
  • Practice meditation every other day
  • Try a new class at the gym
  • Write a letter of gratitude to each member of my family
  • Do a random act of kindness for a stranger
  • Take Saide for a walk on mornings I don’t go spin class
  • Draw each day and/or write a poem (I enjoy both of these)

Sometimes things don’t work out as I hoped, and of course, we all have disappointments.  That’s life. I believe the whole point is to keep pushing ourselves to grow despite the little “bumps in the road”.  This journey is helping me to grow in ways that are surprising. I am so much more self-aware, I value reflection and feedback, and writing my story each day is helping me discover who I am.

Spring
I love these trees in spring.

Tomorrow will be 55 days until my countdown clock runs out – that is very weird! Time is flying by and I am at a whole different place than when I started the journey 74 pounds ago. As always thank you for reading, more tomorrow.

 

 

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Six…

Spring is here. When I left spin class this morning at 6:20 am it was already in the 50’s it was easy to walk to my van I didn’t have to bundle up and brace myself for the weather. When I drove home from work I actually had my skylight open and that was a good feeling.

Good Morning

I had a very productive day at work. I worked with lots of students and teachers it was very rewarding. I came home, made turkey meatloaf for dinner, packed breakfast and lunch for tomorrow and thought about folding laundry. I didn’t get to that though.  Writing this post is an intentional choice to practice some self-care.\

Words of WisdomI hope you had a  good day on plan, and that you were able to be kind to yourself.

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Five…

If work were an ocean I’d be somewhere deep in the Pacific by now. I am drowning in work and trying to beat a deadline. Today’s message is to consider what is really, really important to you. If weight loss and change are important you will find ways to make it happen. You have that power within you and if you are questioning that power then I have a question for you: Why doubt your inner power to make this change?

If you’ve tried before and failed, the past was just a warm-up for today.  This time can be the time that sticks – believe it. I have tried and failed so many times that you might have thought I would’ve given up. But, I never gave up because I always had the hope inside me that one day I would get there. Now that I’m standing just one pound shy of 75 pounds gone, I realize there is no arrival – there is only me. I can do this, and so can you.

Any chance I get to celebrate a little whimsy in this life is a reason to be happy.  It’s ironic that my featured image shows this completely relaxed little guy (a tea diffuser my daughter bought herself today) taking a soak in a teacup. Go with the flow is my new mantra – or at least that is what I keep telling myself. More tomorrow…

whimsy

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Four…

The weather was lovely today even though the day itself was stressful. There are lots of reasons why it was stressful – but this post isn’t about my problems. This post is about my need to push through the problems, and especially when things get difficult. If I  push myself beyond what I think I’m capable of to… what is necessary I will be stronger than I was before. Think about it, what challenging thing have you done lately? How did you feel afterward?  Did you feel lucky? Did you feel accomplished? Did you feel relieved?  There is no wrong answer, only a true answer.

Candy Dress
This is the picture I would give to the word whimsy.

I had a big celebration despite my stressful day. Now is the time where the fireworks would start up and the marching band would play. MY MOM’S RING FITS! I never thought that would happen to me. I thought I was predestined to getting it resized.  But today is the day that changed. It just goes to show that change takes a bit of time to happen. Change is slow, and there is no telling when it will finally catch up with you.

How was your day? Was it stressful like mine? Did you have any happy surprises like I did? I am learning that this journey is more than a good day/ bad day kind of thing. It’s about reflection and growth to respond to whatever comes my way. My wish for you is, no matter what kind of day you’re having, that you make some time for self-care. Weight loss can be difficult at times, so let’s do this together. Thank you for reading.

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Three…

What can I be grateful for today?

  1. I got to work on time despite backups on the Sunken Meadow and  the LIE
  2. It was a very productive day, I finished everything I had to before I left for home
  3. When I got back into town, I treated myself to a manicure
  4. The kids had a good day and everyone seemed happy when I got home
  5. Our playful dog (sweet Sadie)
  6. A good conversation with my daughter
  7. We ate a nice simple dinner: turkey kielbasa, peppers/onions, a 1/3 c of rice.(5sp)
  8. Dave and I laughed a lot at a TV show
  9. There was strawberry Halo Top for dessert (9sp for 1 1/2 cups)
  10.  Books Little Fires Everywhere & My Grandma Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry

If I hadn’t taken this time to write this list I think I wouldn’t have fully appreciated all the good things that happened today.  Gratitude goes a long way on a weight loss journey. I think that’s true because it’s kind of easy to get down on yourself, weight loss takes a while! During that time it is easy to be filled with self-doubt: maybe you are on a plateau, maybe you’re losing weight slowly and wish it was coming off faster, or maybe you just want to quit…

Melody Beatie Quote

But,.. maybe if you just took some time to ask yourself, What can I be grateful for today? You would see the world a little differently. There are days when this journey is difficult, try to make it a little easier on yourself by filling your heart with gratitude.  Write your own list and see if it helps. Remeber, even though this takes time, you are worth every moment.

 

Day Two Hundred Thirty-Two…

I don’t think it is possible to write enough posts about kindness. It is so important to be kind to yourself on this journey. Weight loss takes time and it’s easy to fall into negativity ruts from time to time. A good way to talk back to those tendencies is through a positive stance that reinforces…

Kindness

If you are a Weight Watcher member, you should check out the “Living” page on the website. There are many great resources there to help you stay engaged and on track. Be Kind to Yourself is an exercise I have found really helpful. They suggest that you talk to yourself as you would a friend. I personally like to imagine my mother’s voice, I miss her and it’s one of the most supportive voices I can imagine:

  1. Make a list of your positive qualities.
  2. Pay yourself a compliment every day.
  3. Do things that make you feel better about yourself.
  4. Give yourself regular non-food treats
  5. Spend time with those who care about you.
  6. Avoid situations that submerge you in self-doubt
  7. Stop beating yourself up

Here are my reflections…

  1. I’m a hopeful person who tends to be optimistic about things. I can think through problems and find creative solutions.
  2. I am doing a great job getting in activity on a regular basis.
  3. I went for a walk with my husband when he came home from work. It was sunny and it felt good to be outside with him.
  4. I bought myself a new dress (TJ Maxx on sale even better)  yesterday that I will wear to work tomorrow.
  5. I love that I’m doing more things with my sister she is a great source of love and support 🙂
  6. Avoiding situations that fill me with self-doubt is a little tricky. I demonstrate lessons and work with many different kinds of people sometimes this is a challenge for me.
  7. I’m getting better at this, I used to think about my mistakes for a long time after they were over. I am learning that my mistakes are really opportunities to reflect and grow from. I really hope I will always be trying to grow.

Try this, it helps. If you aren’t being kind to yourself, now may be a good time to think about that – why not be kind? You are worthy of all good things, and just remember you can do this.

Here are some pictures from our walk – there is really so much beauty out there:

Day Two Hundred Thirty-One…

My hand falls on the cool metal handle, as I pull open the door and step inside the Moose Lodge.  Early morning light cast shadows on the dull laminate tile that cuts a path to a long line of members waiting to “weigh in”.  Clearly, this lodge has seen better days, but it’s a special place just the same. Each Saturday morning, I follow my ritual – setting down my cup of Dunkin’ Donuts, my coat, my journal and then I find my place in line with everyone else. My people. I am greeted by friendly faces with a “How was your week?” and a reply to someone else “You look amazing!” or a big smile and a warm “Congratulations.”  Sometimes there is a furrowed brow, “Everyone has those weeks, the good news is you’re here.”  In a word, support.

April 21 2018
It’s hard to believe this where I am 231 days into this journey.

I need support because I need to know that I am not alone. When you have a lot of weight to lose, weight loss is more than trying to improve appearances. It has to do with the quality of your physical health for the rest of your life. I’m not alone.  There are many people out there like me. If you were to see them out in the world you wouldn’t know – they look like “civilians” that is how we refer to people who don’t have food issues.

Weight Watchers has given us a powerful structure to ground our weight loss efforts. As my sister says, “At the end of the day, we’re all here to lose weight.”  She is right, it’s true, this is a weight loss program.  However, I’m finding that as I lose the weight I am gaining so much perspective on so many other facets of my life.  I used food as a way to deal with stress (emotional and physical). I had to stay up late and work, I’d eat to keep going. I felt frustrated with (well, just fill in the blank), I’d eat. I was happy I’d celebrate and eat. Eat, eat, eat. It’s hard to write that down and look at it for what it is… I gained weight not because I was destined to be overweight, I gained weight because of me.

Being honest and allowing myself to be vulnerable before anyone who reads this post is kind of like trying on a swimsuit in front of an auditorium full of people. So, you might be thinking, Why is she doing this?  This is the only way I know how to be truly authentic, I want to embrace who I really am. I want to make this journey real because I am all in. I want to connect with others who are trying to change the trajectory of their lives too. I tell you it’s worth it if this post can inspire someone to make a better choice, even if it’s only for today. Then it’s worth all the risks that come with vulnerability.

It appears that this is a world of branding, staging, and bulleted talking points. The irony is if that’s all there is (there is no substance) then, there is no reason to listen. The way to truth is usually through some pain – so if you are finding it difficult on this journey – you’re not alone. You’re not defective, you’re not flawed – you’re human. You don’t have to go it alone, you don’t have to be stoic and strong all the time. You just have to be real, and embrace the struggle. I’m finding that the more I open myself up to learning, as a child would, the more successful I am. The more I focus my energy on curiosity, wonder, and beauty the more that fills my heart, and the more I can put my heart into the journey.  You can do this too, you just have to believe.

Here is a little collection of things that at some point were objects of great affection… it’s so funny what can touch the heart.