Day One Hundred Sixty-Three …

I had a challenging day at work. After my workday was done, I had to stay after school and run professional development for many dedicated teachers, who also had busy days filled with their own challenges. Then when I got home I had to work on a very tedious data report and I just finished now, at 10:04 pm. We all have stressful days, and that is nothing new.

What is new… in the past, I would have been snacking throughout all of these stressful situations. Mindlessly picking at chips and candy.  That didn’t happen and that is a huge step forward for me. I didn’t go on auto-pilot and revert back to old unhealthy habits. I didn’t even recognize this when it was happening, it’s only now that I have this quiet moment to reflect that I can appreciate this NSV.

What changed?

I wonder how I am making these changes now when it’s been so difficult in the past. I think about getting to goal every day, and when I think about it I believe it will happen. When I think about NSV’s I am genuinely proud of them.  Not thinking about or needing to snack during stressful moments is something I wasn’t able to do last year at this time. All these little steps are steps in the right direction, and expect for there to be “bumps in the road”. Writing these posts is a rewarding way to reflect by elevating my awareness for this process – that is really different from past attempts. When I write, I imagine you reading my posts. My hope is that something I write will connect with you because I feel like I’ve been let in on a secret and I want to share it.

Words of Wisdom

By doing all these things, I am learning that the challenging days don’t derail my efforts. There will always be hard days, but learning how to get through them without sabotaging myself feels pretty amazing. I hope you had a great day.  Even if you didn’t, just remember any day you are on plan (even if it’s not what you would call a successful day on plan) is a better day you spent wishing things were different – you can do this! Believe it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Day One Hundred Sixty-Two…

Looking for beauty in everyday objects is something that makes me happy. The little Buddha, seen in my featured image,  was a gift from my father.  There is something very special about him, he is an intangible connection to my dad. He stirs feelings that are endearing, touching and sad all at once. There is beauty in simplicity, there is beauty in complexity.

Screen Shot 2018-02-11 at 11.24.34 PM

It’s been a very busy Sunday and I began the day with spinning and breakfast both were very satisfying!  So many people are noticing my weight loss lately. It is strange for me to think about how different I look and feel. Really, it hasn’t been that long and my results are pretty striking.

I am prepping to get ready for professional development tomorrow. Aside from the work, it takes to meet that challenge, I am charged with bringing “snacks”. I figured I would offer both indulgences and a healthier option.

Snacks
Snack options for PD

I am being careful to appreciate the small things as much as the big things. A hot cup of tea on this rainy cold day. Receiving pictures from my daughter, and good conversation. These are small things but they mean a lot to me.

I appreciate all the small things that make me happy because they make this journey easier. A hot cup of tea on a rainy night. A beautiful picture my daughter shared. These are reasons to be happy. One of student’s told me that his dad tells him to, “Choose happy.”  This is great advice for us all.

Day One Hundred Sixty-One…

A community is a thing that I need on this journey.  I can’t do this alone, and I realize I am always writing this, and I am going to write it again – I am so grateful for everyone who reaches out and decides to do this with me. Yes, we are all on our own path, but we don’t have to journey alone.

My Week Feb 10 In the past, I would go to my meetings and feel so inspired, and think, “Ok, I’m gonna’ do it this week. This the week that I’m going to get ‘on track’ and get with the program.” Then that burst of energy would burn and wane like a candle’s dwindling flame. It’s as though I would forget all the support I really have.

Once I began to realize all the love that is out there for me (and you) this became easier. If you are reading this right now, and you feel the struggle and frustration of trying and failing to build a healthy lifestyle, I feel that pain. It seems so far off and hard to do because it just seems to require too much effort and work. So, I would just turn off that light and close the door on that dream, and let myself get drawn into all the other parts of my life. Then Saturday would roll around and I would start the cycle all over.

I wonder, do you believe me when I write that you can do this? Do you think, “She doesn’t know me, so she can’t write this to me.” I wonder, do you think, “This is just what I need to read right now, and yes she’s right I can do this.”  Either answer is the truth, the difference is what you believe.  I know I can have this and that’s powerful, and I know you can have it too.

When losing weight and changing your lifestyle becomes an exercise in endurance it is exhausting. When losing weight and changing your lifestyle becomes a gesture of love it brings joy.  Joy feeds the energy and that’s how we can shine. Shine on, you can do this. 

Advice from my Weight Watcher’s meeting to get you going…

We are truly smarter when we think in a group. Every time members share I am blown away by their generosity:. They are sharing everything I need to know to be successful:

  1. Find a few minutes each day for activity it doesn’t have to be a big ordeal
  2. Plan for the week. Grocery shop, prep and bag up foods so they are convenient.
  3. Plan out dinners for the week so you don’t have think about what to eat.
  4. When foods are tempting at work think, “That’s not my food.”  you won’t eat it.
  5. Write down everything you eat, it makes you mindful.
  6. Us the scanner from the Weight Watcher app when you shop, it helps.
  7. Don’t assume to know the points of something, it can be really different.
  8. The pocket guide is also a really helpful tool.
  9. Think through your options when dining out, have a plan before you go.
  10. Plug in the nutricional information if a resturant is not listed into the calculator, it will give you the Smart Point value.

I am out here rooting for you, and I feel it, I think you are rooting for me too. We can do this, and there is no better time to get started than now.

Day One Hundred Sixty…

This pair of jeans have been out of reach for years and today I wore them to work. Someone gave me a compliment about my appearance and guess what? I just said, “Thank you so much.” The jeans, the way I handled the compliment are both non-scale victories for me.

NSV
I am feeling more confident.

The way I see myself may shape the way I see the world and in turn, perhaps, the way the world sees me.  Our Weekly asked us to examine unhelpful thoughts and give them a reality check. For instance, I didn’t plan out what we were going to have for dinner tonight. An unhelpful thought about that situation would be, “I am hungry and now I have to figure out what I have to eat?”  The helpful twist would be, “I am hungry because I’m eating healthy foods regularly and fortunately I can have lots of options.”  The helpful thoughts put me on a path for positive action. This is a good exercise, and I encourage you to give it a try.

 

Day One Hundred Fifty-Nine…

It was pretty crowded in the faculty room today. People were sitting in their regular seats, eating their lunches and chatting. I put down my lunch bag and looked at the items the others were eating, and I had to laugh, the girl next to me had Cape Cod Chips 40% less fat variety, and Mini Babybel Lite Cheese just like me! When I unpacked my lunch, I said, “Check this out.” and she immediately laughed too, because how weird is that pairing?  Until, she said, “Well, I’m a Weight Watcher” I smiled and said, “Me too.” 

IMG_0239
Babybel Lite Cheese = 1sp Cape Cod Chips = 3sp

It turns out she has lost over 70 pounds and looks amazing!  I really love that now I have a new friend with whom I can talk about the journey.

I went to 5:15 am spin class this morning and had a great ride.  I notice that I’m getting stronger and that is a very cool accomplishment:

Many people are starting to notice my weight loss. It is really nice to have their admiration for my accomplishment.  In the past, I would have just been embarrassed, but as with everything else, it’s different this time around.

Soup's On!
Really delicious soup. I just used soup greens from the food store, I did add a potato, fresh spinach, beans and some frozen leeks from Trader Joe’s. Easy and delicious! 

What hasn’t changed is my need to be self-deprecating.  Today, someone said, “Hey Jenn, you are getting so skinny!” Instead of saying, “Thank you.” I said, “Thank you, it’s a lot of work.”  Sure, doing this takes some effort, but the truth is (for me right now) it’s not a lot of work. Why did I say that? Do I have some kind of need to downplay my dedication and success?  I think I have to watch that so I don’t undermine myself. Does any of this make sense?

Wonder

I hope you had a great day on the journey. Any day on plan, even a rough one, is better than a day off plan. Just remember why you are doing this, and hold that reason in your heart – your head will follow. More tomorrow…

Day One Hundred Fifty-Eight…

I think the secret to happiness is defined by purpose. Today I was swept up in a purpose, a student was reading to me as I was writing notes about her reading behaviors and all of sudden I realized, I get to be a witness to her brilliance. Growth and change are as easy for children as it is to open a door – you did it, now you’re entering someplace new.

Gary Zukav Quote

As I go through my own journey, I find myself opening doors and stepping into new phases of my life, I find that there is so much joy in learning. Making Weight Watchers work for me, having a workout routine, and reflecting on my thoughts and feelings have changed my life.  I think I might have missed all of this if I didn’t take on this challenge to get to goal. So the weight that was holding me back is setting me free. Life is weird.

What is your intention? Do you know why do you want to lose weight?  Can you tell someone your “why” if they asked? These are questions to think on, it matters. When I decided I wanted to do something big, like losing a significant amount of weight, I had to know why I wanted it.  I want it because I want to be as healthy as I can for the rest of my life. I want it because, for a long time, I’ve been hiding out. What I mean is I was not living up to my true potential by eating emotions or removing myself from challenging situations. I want my energy back, to feel like I used to feel. I want the confidence that comes with being happy with my appearance. I want it for me, and perhaps that is the most important reason of all. Why do you want it? How are you going to get it?

Day One Hundred Fifty-Seven…

New York City Memories

New Yorkers walk fast and I was on the move to get to Penn Station. I was jostling my suitcase as I weaved in and out of the crowd. I felt it bump and jump as I tugged at the handle looking straight ahead. I meant business. I wanted to catch the LIRR home. It had been a long week in the hot city and I was ready for this city adventure to be over.”Excuse me, you dropped your bracelet.” A soft mellow voice barely audible over the noise and commotion of the crowd. I spun around and a lady who looked like she was dressed in a Nurses’ Aide uniform stood resolute pointing down to the scuffed floor. There, in a little golden heap of x’s and o’s was Nanny’s bracelet.

It was as if everything stopped for a moment as I bent down to pick it up, “Thank you, I can’t tell you what this bracelet means to me it was my Nanny’s, I can’t thank you enough.” Shaking my head looking down at the bracelet, feeling a rising warmth for this extraordinary kindness, I reached in and hugged a stranger in the subway.

What does it mean to be kind?

I was wearing this bracelet today when this picture book, Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller / Jen Hill arrived today in the mail. The book poses the question, What does it mean to be kind?  It muses the complexities of kindness and the dream for a better world.  Imagine if we all made kindness a habit of mind – how would that shape this journey? Research says we would be happier and more successful too.  If you want to read more about it, check out: 5 Researched-Based Reasons to be Kind.

kindness