Day Three Hundred Seventy-Five…

This post was from yesterday… 

Tomorrow is weigh-in day and I am reflecting on my week. I have taken action to keep going, even though it’s been difficult for me lately. I went to spin two times, I packed my lunch and breakfast, I tracked everything, I weighed and measured everything, I practiced mindful eating (especially when I waited too long to eat) so I didn’t just wolf down my food I tried to really show my appreciation for having food to eat. I helped a friend who was struggling by going through a hard time on her weight loss journey (I went through the three steps for taking a strategic stance for weight loss and they worked Day 374)!

think

So… if my results do not show up in numbers this week how will I feel?  I have decided this stall before goal is like a test. How much do I want to get to goal? I really want to get there, as much as I have since the beginning. Once in a while, I will also really want to eat two scoops of gelato,  I can have both – the gelato and goal I just have to understand my choices at the moment. There will be times when health issues may interfere with weight loss, that’s life. There will be weeks like I had this one that will be extraordinarily stressful, that’s life too. This is not easy, and that’s why a lot of people give up.

I’m not going to give up, and maybe I’m thinking about goal as a destination when it’s really the path. In some ways, I’m already there because my goal was to change my lifestyle I’ve definitely done that I live my life completely differently when it comes to food.  Even though I (really really) want to see a particular number on the scale, the number itself is really secondary. I’ll let you know.

 

Day Three Hundred Seventy-Four…

My weight loss journey has taught me more about life than I ever thought it would. Instead of working on my writing project from home, I went to my local library and that helped. My weight loss journey is helping me to think more strategically in other aspects of my life. That’s so unexpected. It makes sense though because if I keep plodding along, not getting the results I’m after and without reflection; obviously, I need a strategy.

How do strategies work for weight loss? The same way they work with anything new you’re trying to learn. Begin by thinking about a behavior you want to change. Then think about your strengths. What are you really good at doing? When you have those two answers you can take a strategic stance to help yourself. This is how it works for me:

  1. Identify a Behavior Change: I do not want to use food as a stress reliever. 

  2. Identify my Strengths: I enjoy writing. 

  3. Taking a Strategic Stance:  I can blog each day to reflect on my weight loss journey. 

This is the strategy that has helped me lose 87.8 pounds. Writing every day has helped me to deconstruct my behaviors around food.  This particular strategy, writing every day, may not work for you, if you don’t like to write, the strategy becomes a punishment.  Only you can find out what will work for you. If you’re the kind of person who really enjoys cooking, that is your way to a strategic stance  If you’re the kind of person who gets a thrill from organizing stuff, that is your way to a strategic stance. If you’re the kind of person who loves to be outside in nature (I’m thinking of my WW buddy Regina) that’s your way to a strategic stance.

Words of Wisdom

My point tonight is, think about who you are because it’s your strengths (not your weaknesses) that will get you to the person you want to become.

Day Three Hundred Seventy…

Today was another crazy work day! And tomorrow is going to be another. There is no time for me right now.  I can’t imagine why I did this to myself. Oh yeah… money. Ok, so I’m in the thick of it right now.

Books students love
Book rec. from students

I used all my points today but I did make some very good food choices. For breakfast, I had nonfat Greek yogurt and berries and banana. A few hours later I had some vegetable sticks and a cheese stick as a mid-morning snack. For lunch, I had one cup of three bean chili with cheese and diced tomato on top. Later, I had a small sweet potato with 7 grams of butter (yup I weighed the butter) as a late afternoon snack For dinner,. I ate a cup of rice with black beans and cilantro and 5 oz of turkey kielbasa.  For dessert, I ate two sugar-free dark chocolate jellos (yeah, I probably only needed one but I wanted two) with fat-free whipped cream. As I look back on my day I could’ve eaten less cheese but either way, I would say it was a good day on plan.

I’m turning in because I’m tired. I did do my little nighttime ritual, washing my face with my favorite soap, applying my facial cream, and (of course) flossing and brushing my teeth. These small acts are a way to practice a little self-care amidst my professional chaos. I am so grateful to be where I am right now even though I’m not at goal yet. Every day I remind myself that I can do this. I tell myself every small step gets me closer to goal. I can do this, and so can you.

Day Three Hundred Sixty-Nine…

This post is coming at you late because it has been a long day of work. I spent most of today writing on my computer. I found myself thinking about food a couple of times. Two times were because I was experiencing internal hunger. Time had slipped by and I had not eaten in over four hours and I wasn’t craving anything, in particular, I just wanted to eat something. However, one time I was thinking about a Carvelite Ice Cream Cone and that was a desire to alleviate some stress. I didn’t go for the cone because I had a chocolate chip cookie after lunch. I’m ending the day with one rollover point. Breakfast 2sp; Lunch 8sp; and Dinner was 10sp.

So while I have this tremendous workload going I decided, I needed a boost. So I did two things to help myself…

One: I prepared a really delicious dinner. I cleared my dining room table of all my books and the whole family sat and enjoyed the meal together. It was homemade sauce (with pork) and pasta. A true comfort meal for me and I was able to eat it, enjoy it, and still stay on plan. I did weigh and measure my serving, and I had a piece of bread to dip in my leftover sauce. So darn good.

Two: I needed a visual anchor to remind myself of how far I’ve come in terms of weight loss. On my right, is my mother’s ring sparkling up at me. There to remind me of all the years it was tucked away in a draw because I couldn’t wear it.  On my left, my engagement ring, and wedding ring which were at one time, too small for my fingers. Now they are so loose they turn to the side. I did that.

I think it’s important to give yourself a chance to be successful. When you know you are going to be up against it you’ve got to plan in some relief. Celebrate all the victories none are too small. Believe you can do it even when your circumstances aren’t ideal. You are worth every ounce of effort. I’ll be back at this tomorrow. Do this with me we can all get to goal.

Year One…

Happy Birthday Getting to Goal! Today marks an accomplishment I am very proud of. I have blogged every day for one whole year. On Day One… I went to the Cheesecake Factory with my husband and son, and I didn’t crash and burn. That small moment was so important because it proved this could be done.

The thing that stands out to me is that I was full of hope and I believed in my potential. Thinking back to the beginning makes me feel so happy because I finally did something for myself. It is very hard to hold onto that good feeling when today has been so challenging. However, remembering better days, days, stronger days, helps.

Some wins…

  • My work presentation was amazing! Everyone applauded at the end.
  • I never felt like eating to deal with my stress.
  • I’ve been eating with the Healthy Eating Zone for three out of four days this month.
  • I’ve been drinking more water

Thank you for reading and coming along on my journey. I hope you are well and feeling strong. If you had a difficult day, it’s ok those days eventually end and better days are coming.

Be grateful… Be kind… Appreciate beauty… Find your brave…

Day Three Hundred Sixty-Three…

It’s late so this will be a short post.  Tomorrow is a big day for me and all the other teachers in my district.  I’m presenting to my department all morning, and  I’m sure I have a bunch of meetings to fill up my afternoon. I plan on packing a good lunch and lots of water.  I wish I already had that done but it didn’t work out that way, so I’ll just do it first thing in the morning.

Right now, this is the best I can do and I’m proud of my efforts. I’m keeping “my why” close, and I’m working the program so it works for me.  There are so many things in life that can derail us aren’t there? Here’s to keeping good habits going and reflecting every day.

 

Day Three Hundred Fifty…

It’s late. I am going to share a list of things I am grateful for:

  1. My son saw that I was working the day away, sat down next to me and lent a hand. Then he made me a cup of tea.
  2. Later, my daughter saw me at my post behind the computer screen, bought me a seltzer and helped me with my work for a while too.
  3. My husband encouraged me to keep going and did all the other things that have to be done when you have a house and family.
  4. I cooked a healthy dinner and we ate together.
  5. I met my first deadline.

#SelfLoveChallenge

AY 20: Positive self-talk is a very important part of this journey. Speak to yourself as you would a loved one. You would not reprimand the person for gaining weight one week or not tracking the weekend. Concentrate on complimenting yourself today.

I am happy to say that the habits I’ve developed over these past 353 days have helped me to avoid these kinds of slip-ups. Yes, I have gained some weeks but that’s just the body – I can’t control that and I’m ok with it. I’ve said it before, my body doesn’t know it has to perform because it’s Saturday morning at 8:15 am. I can compliment my perseverance.  Even though these past days have been extremely challenging I have not given up. I’m proud of myself for sticking it out even though it’s hard. More tomorrow.

Day Three Hundred Thirty-Three…

I gained .4 pounds this week and that’s ok. This is a process and these fluctuations are to be expected. I feel really healthy and my measurements are less than they were even a week ago. That is my rational mind. There is also a small childish part of me who says, “No fair I did everything I could to make up for cake and ice cream choices I made. This is taking forever.” That is my emotional mind. The reality is weight loss takes time, effort, and patients. This is the way it has to go for me. I can only do my best and hopefully, next week will yield better results on the scale.

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Today’s Weight Watcher meeting focused on what it means to have a Non-Scale-Victory (NSV).  Owning my real feelings about this week’s small gain and moving on from it without sabotaging myself is an NSV for me. Even now, with all of the behavior changes I have put into place, this acknowledgment of my true feelings is an NSV because there is a very unrealistic part of me that wants what it wants. It’s easy to find comfort in food but I don’t want that to be my story anymore.

NSVSo if you’re on the journey, and you are feeling like it’s never going to happen this is the time where you have to lean in and say, “This is is a process and in time I will get what I really want. I really want to get to goal.” If wanting to get to goal is real for you, that will be enough to get you through your disappointment. Honor every feeling you have, don’t try to ignore what your thinking, and talk back to any disappointment you may be feeling, remind yourself of all that you’ve accomplished up to this point.  This is hard, but you can do it and so can I.

#SelfLoveChallenge Update

DAY 4: Take four “mini breaks” today just to breathe deeply for two minutes and be in the moment. Focus on what your body feels like: Is it tired? Are there areas that are tense? Try to relax, if the answer is yes.

I did one of these so far today. I felt some pressure at the base of my head into my neck.  I also felt a little pressure under my shoulder blade on my right side.  It felt good to be still and try to break up the tensions I was feeling. At one point it felt like a long time had passed even though I had my phone time set for two minutes.  I think this is worth doing because it strengthens my ability o be mindful and present. Try it for yourself, let me know what you found. More tomorrow, as always thank you for reading these posts.

Day Three Hundred Twenty-Nine…

One of the reasons I joined Weight Watchers is that their program is rooted in scientific research. It is built to sustain life-long behavior changes when it comes to eating right and getting active.  A benefit of the program is that we receive a Freestyle publication that shares research and insights into weekly topics. Our topic this week is self-esteem.

Self-esteem

Having a healthy self-esteem helps with weight loss. The sad part of this equation is that we tend to have lower self-esteem just when we need it most! There is certainly a lot of judgment and prejudices embedded in our society when it comes to weight. I have been on both ends, and have experienced it first hand. People treated me differently when I was 85.8 pounds heavier. It is heartbreaking and it is true. I am thinking that is why Weight Watchers Science Team coined the phrase “weight independent self-esteem.”  It is essential that we all value ourselves for who we are not what we weigh.

Years ago I read Geneen Roth’s book, Women, Food, and God An Unexpected Path to Almost Anything. Her book had a profound impact on me.  I’m annoyed too because I lent it to someone who never gave it back The thing is I am struck by how many lessons I learned about myself reading that book  Things have stuck with me even though I wasn’t fully ready to understand her message until now. Read the book  My top three lessons I learned:

  1. Stop taking what I already have for granted.
  2. Food is not a time machine to bring me back to happier days.
  3. Get out my head and into my body; be appreciative for what it does for me every day.

It’s no wonder that Geneen’s work has had an influence on Oprah too:

If you want to improve your self-esteem here is an exercise I learned this week:

  1. Focus on someone who cares about you.
  2. Examine that person for a minute – how they look, what they sound like, eye color, height, imagine this person smiling at you, personality…
  3. Ask, What makes this person special to me? Then observe how you feel.
  4. Ask, How does that person see me?  List all the things that you do that makes your special person appreciate you. You are so worthy of love and self-caring!

These are suggestions from Weight Watchers. Why not try them? There is nothing to lose and maybe a lot to gain. My wish for you is that you have a successful day on the journey!

Day One Hundred Ninety-Two…

There is no better feeling than being in snuggled in bed on a dark snowy morning. The light filtering through the window is grey and muted. On any other day, a ringing phone would be jarring, but today it is as comforting as a childhood memory, “Good Morning, This is Dr. Gianni, due to the inclement weather school will be closed today, March 13th…” Clicking off the phone, it quickly shouts out another cheerful ring, click: “Good morning, This is Robert Banza,” the Northport choir singing softly behind him, “Due to the storm our roads will not be safe for travel for our students, faculty, and staff. Our schools will be closed…”  Getting a day like today is like receiving a gift to do whatever I want – or even to do nothing and just be. I know that everyone is safe and sound that is a remarkable feeling of contentment.

I feel like I’m making the most of the day. Our daughter did have to go to work but Stop & Shop is just down the road from where we live.  So my husband cleared the snow and we dropped her off and took a ride into town. This made me think of my father-in-law who loved to venture out on snowy stormy days. He loved the adventure of it, and it was comforting to think of him too.  We came home, and I made three batches of pancakes: M&M pancakes for my son, regular for my husband, and blueberry for me. Yes, on Weight Watchers I can enjoy pancakes too. That’s why this program is the best one for making a lifestyle change. It would be a dark, stoic, unhappy life if I couldn’t relish a dish of blueberry pancakes on a snow day!

I hope that wherever you are in the world you are well on the journey. I wish you calm, contentment, and joy. Yes, we all want to reach our weight loss or fitness goals, but the thing is, if you are on the journey to improve your life, you don’t have to wait to start enjoying today. Make it a great one.