Total Weight Loss

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Harsh Reality

Over the weekend, as I moved my clothes from the guest bedroom closet to the master bedroom closet, I sorted and purged lots of clothes.  I had worn none of the clothes in the master bedroom closet since the floor fiasco redo.  

Some of the clothes, I knew I'd never wear again and they quickly went in the donate pile.  Other clothes were like seeing an old friend.  I'd missed them, and I was glad to put them back in the rotation.  Unfortunately, far too many of the clothes are too small.  That was a smack to the forehead.  And I needed it.

I'm not talking about those clothes I bought at a smaller weight.  I'm talking about the ones I wore but left thinking I'd not need them for a week or two.  I don't think the fibers drew up while they were hanging.  I expanded.

Instead of getting angry and frustrated (although I did - a little bit), I took some time to really think about what I'm doing for my health and fitness.  I stopped weighing thinking that was a good thing.  It may have been at that time, but it allowed me to  perceive I was doing things, very good things to get the weight off.  I wasn't.  Oh, I was doing things, I just wasn't making good assessments and thought if I kept on, that one day I'd wake up thin.  That hasn't happened.

Now it is the time to fully assess what I'm doing, what I need to keep doing and what I need to change.

What were the very good things:
*Eating real food, prepared at home most of the time.  This means meals that are protein and vegetable based, and snacks like fruit or nuts.
*Avoiding sugar and flour
*Setting the walking challenges with the pedometer
*Writing my mantra daily, along with personal affirmations
*Weighing weekly at the most, or hardly at all

What's working:
*Eating real food, at home - it should.  I have not kept a food journal, part of my more relaxed, make this part of my lifestyle approach.  But we wound up eating out three times last week.  That's a lot.  More than usual, as least I think, and we went places where I could get vegetables.
*Avoiding sugar and white flour - again, I have no evidence since there is no food journal.  And there were those brownies I made for church that weren't all eaten.  I brought the leftovers home.  I only ate one each day until they were gone.  I even shared with 65MD.
*Setting walking challenges - I am truly challenged to meet the goals I set for myself.  I can document the number of steps I've taken each day.  I think this is working and will continue to as I continue to push myself.
*Writing my mantra & and affirmation each day.  This is hard to measure.  I think it is.  I find myself making better choices, like only eating one brownie rather than a whole row.  I opted for fruit over potato chips at a function the other day without even having an internal debate.  That is probably due to that continual reinforcement.

What happens now:
In general I like the more relaxed approach.  I'm calmer and happier about food now than I have been in a long time.  Still, something must change.  My weight is creeping up slowly rather than creeping down as I expected.
*Eating real food at home.  I will continue to do this.  I will keep a food log to better document what I eat each day.  I will write Caesar salad, not 3 cups of romaine, 1 T Parmesan cheese, 13 croutons, etc.  I will not go 'all accountant' on it and list every last calorie or carb.  That is not sustainable and the reason I quit.  For now, I'm keeping a general assessment of what I eat each day.  Once I have a few weeks of logs, I can review and see what needs to happen.  
*Avoiding flour and sugar.  They are gone from my home prepared meals.  They'd crept back in, since it was allowable.  I'm struggling not to say they are banned completely because if I do have a little, I don't want to feel like I failed.  However, the avoidance is definitely going to be kicked up significantly.  I think the journal will help here too.
*Setting walking challenges - keep doing what I'm doing
*Writing my mantra & affirmation - keep doing what I'm doing

Also, I'm adding back weighing at least each week.  For  now, I'll hold off with all of the spreadsheets and graphs I love so much.  Even though the scales are a poor indicator, they are the most immediate reflection of progress.

Looking ahead, I have company coming at least two times in the next few weeks, a week at church camp in July (more on that later), and then it is on to birthdays, anniversaries, and on and on.  There will always be an excuse to start tomorrow or next week, or even next month.  That indicates to me that I need to figure out how to truly make weight loss a lifestyle.  I've got to learn how to navigate family functions, trips and the like without feeling deprived, nor sabotaging my weight loss/health goals.  This is a very daunting task.  Thanks for supporting me on this journey!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016


Some of my long time readers may remember that on spring break 2015, that would be mid March, 65MD and I began to redo the floor in our bedroom.  It would be a simple task.  Maybe spilling over a bit beyond the week, but not much.  I even told a relative in town for the week, that she would see the finished product when she came back at Christmas.  That didn't happen!

The week long project took 15 months.  The starts and stops were both within and beyond our control.  Changing our minds from recarpeting to tile certainly extended the project.  Doing it ourselves also took more time.  Some days we worked hard and made lots of progress.  It felt good.  Some days we just had other priorities and could not work on it.  That was frustrating.  Some days we were tired and didn't feel like it.  That didn't feel so good.  There were things truly beyond our control, like two surgeries and two recoveries. (one for each of us)

Now, finally, at long last the floor is done.  It looks fabulous!  I love it.  It has been worth every second of the wait.  The room itself is not finished.  (I'll post pictures then.)  We are going to chalk paint the furniture black, and I have some bedding and curtains to complete.  I am so enjoying going back there and deciding just where to put this lovely little thing or that.

Oddly, I'm purging a lot of stuff too.  It feels good.  It is spilling over into the rest of the house.  I'm rearranging lots of things and finding more than I realized, I can live without.  I walked over 9000 steps yesterday, moving stuff around, doing laundry, etc.  Well, not all actually in the house, but I did NOT go on a planned walk.  Really.

I felt good all day yesterday.  It was a good day, although not everything that happened yesterday was a good thing.  I had  good day.  This morning as I wrote down my 2016 mantra:  "I am strong, fit and healthy."  Then I went back and read what I wrote:  "I am strong, fit and happy."  Really.  I wrote that.  I just sat and looked at it.  I am happy.

It goes beyond the floor.  It is just a room.  In time, we'll redecorate or move or something.  It isn't permanent.  It isn't vital.  It isn't really even important.  I think what has got me so, hyped  is the accomplishment.  I'm not sure we'd do it again, if we knew when we started what all it would entail. but we stuck it out.  We saw it through to the end.  We did it together and we did a great job.

If I were really clever, I'd connect this somehow with weight loss.  I'd draw a parallel between the stops and starts of the floor to the stops and starts of healthy eating.  The decisions within and beyond my control to workout or not.  I'd take this lesson and apply it to being healthy, although, I'm not sure there is a final completion day there.  I still could use this somehow.  I enjoy this feeling.  I need to keep it.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

My Feet

I was so excited to share about my nephew yesterday that I totally skipped mentioning my feet.  In short, they are mostly fine.

The longer version:  My left foot, where the burr was is totally fine.  I think 65MD's 'surgery' on it is what made it so sore the next day.  I also think the burr came out even though he didn't think so.  After that one day of concern, it never bothered me again.

My right foot, where I snagged my pinky toe on the wooden pallet is much better.  It does not hurt to walk.  It hurts sometimes when it is touched just the right way.  I mostly wear open toed shoes so it isn't a problem.  Once I get my walking shoes on, it is fine there too.

My feet are fine for walking.  My hips are too.  They are just a little more particular about the surface.  They aren't too wild about concrete and uneven surfaces.  They're getting better at those and even better at the stairs.  Stamina, building up endurance is the name of the game for me now.

I'm on my way.  I wound up with an average of just over 5800 steps per day for the last 15 days.  It is down slightly from the first challenge, but that one was shorter and I had a little more control over my days (no family trip).  I expect to reach my 6000 average goal this time and sport some new clothes by the end of the month!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Back to Business

We had a nice trip to see my nephew graduate.  I'll share more about that later.

I didn't walk as much as I anticipated while I was there.  And with today being my last day, I don't think I'll make my average 6000 step goal.  I'm close with, as of last night, my average being over 5700. But, I'd have to get nearly 10,000 steps today.  It could happen, but I doubt it.

65MD and I met at school and walked Monday and Tuesday.  We knew we wouldn't be able to today, so I walked at the church building.  That has really helped my average.  Even though, I come home and ice my hips, they are telling me it is time for a wee break.

If I make my goal by the end of the day today, I'll get myself a new dressy outfit.  If I don't, I'll get myself one article of clothing, like a skirt, from a thrift store.  I made a valiant effort and I believe I earned something just not the grand prize.  I'll start tomorrow with the goal again of getting 6000 steps per day between now and June 30.  If I make that, I'll get myself that outfit.

It is doable, I think, if I take a walk each day. 65MD is committed to meeting me and walking.  We've only done it twice and I love it.  It takes a little effort to organize my day to meet him.  It is so worth it.  It is nice to have that break in the afternoon to see him and chat.  His summer schedule is ever changing, but we'll figure a way to keep on.  We are both enjoying it.

Now for the highlight of my trip - Most of my readers know about my special needs nephew.  Briefly, he came to us through adoption.  His parents lost custody of him because they were cooking meth in the house, when he was an infant.  It left him with a seizure disorder and he is very delayed developmentally.  He is 7 years old and still wears a diaper, cannot walk, or talk.  He goes to school and has therapists work with him.  He is taking a few steps with lots of help.  He communicates through his own sign language, like raising his eyebrows for 'yes' and an occasional well placed grunt.  He smiles and laughs at the right time, so he knows what is going on around him.  He also has an adorable grumpy face.  

He went to the airport with us to see us off.  We all hugged each other and then I bent down and kissed his sweet face and  said "I love you, Sweetie.'  He immediately responded with three grunts.  I looked up at my sister shocked.  I said that I thought he just told me that he loved me.  She smiled and said that he did!  Of course, I insisted that my mother do the same thing to see if he responded to her the same way and HE DID!  I cannot express the joy that gave me, not just to be told I was loved, but that he knew what I told him and responded!  I'm crying as I type just remembering that.  It  made the whole trip.

Monday, June 6, 2016

And So It Goes...

On our last full day at the beach, I stepped on a burr.  It seemed like no big deal at the time.  65MD pulled it out and we walked along the surf.  I felt a small pinch from time to time, but thought little of it.  I thought I had a tiny cut and that it would stop hurting in time.

Since we've been back, I've felt the pinch from time to time but again thought little of it.  The pain was minor and fleeting.  Believe me, I know pain!  Yesterday, however, when I got out of bed, I felt the pinch with every step.   I realized that we'd been home plenty long for whatever minor cut to heal and that perhaps a bit of the burr was still in my foot.

I had 65MD take a look and that was the case.  The spot was sort of in the arch of my foot so that it really didn't get my full weight when I walked.  Until yesterday - when the place was puffy.  65MD got out the hydrogen peroxide, cotton balls and a needle and performed surgery!  He poked and prodded, wiped and cleaned and poked and prodded some more, but to no avail.

So, now I have two sore feet and I'm faced with a dilemma.  I'm headed out of town tomorrow for the rest of the week for my nephew's graduation and my niece's birthday.  I don't want to be limping around while I'm there.  It seems silly to call the doctor for something so minor.  It is not infected and we were very careful yesterday to keep everything clean.

I haven't decided for sure, but I think I'm going to just wait and see what happens.  I really don't have time for a doctor visit.

Saturday, June 4, 2016


Yesterday, I got in 6661 steps.  I should have taken 10 more but I didn't.

Even though I exceeded the average just a bit, I still didn't actually go for a walk.  I moved a lot more at home and thought I'd try a sidewalk walk after supper to see if I'd made any progress there.  As we ate, 65MD asked if I wanted to go to Home Depot to pick up a few more flooring supplies.  (Will this job never end?)  I agreed.  I knew then, I'd get my steps in.

We took a stroll through the garden area to see if there was anything there we wanted for the yard.  We found calla lily bulbs half price so we grabbed them right up.  As we were walking along, 65MD got a step or two ahead of me as I had stopped to look at something.  I was wearing flip flops and I was taking some quick steps to catch back up to him when I caught my pinky toe on a wooden pallet.  I yelped.

Not only did 65MD stop to see what had happened, two other customers did.  It was like at a car accident when several people stop to see if everyone is OK.  I was highly embarrassed and tried to play it off as no big deal.  One of the men that stopped said he knew better.  He knew it hurt because he saw it happen.  He was coming towards us from a side aisle, so he had the best vantage point  I insisted that I did not need medical attention.  We paid for our purchases and went home.  And my.toe.hurt.

I soaked it as soon as we got home and I think that kept it from turning black & blue.  It still hurts.  I can walk but it is going to be much more of a challenge to get to my average each day, especially since my average after three days is just 5600.  I've got over 1100 steps just to get even and then keep up the pace.  I must do it.  I need clothes!

Friday, June 3, 2016

Slow Start far I have yet to hit my goal of 6000 steps.  I know it is an average, but I won't get an average if I fall below every day.  Sigh.

Wednesday, I had plans to go to the grocery store so I didn't plan a walk.  I get plenty of steps in at the store.  Unfortunately, I didn't go to the store and I didn't even get 5000 step in!!

Yesterday, I didn't go for a walk either.  I did make it to the grocery store and got over 5000 steps.

Neither day went as planned, which is what I was alluding to in my post where I set the goal initially.

Life just happens and this summer the key word is going to have to be 'flexible'.  It is going to be a great summer.  65MD is going to be able to work from home most days.  I love it.  I'm sure we'll push some of those long awaited home improvement projects forward and maybe even finish the bedroom floor!!!!

That just means I am going to have to be much more mindful and deliberate in my actions to reach my goals.

I haven't been bra shopping other than browsing Amazon.  I will collect my reward soon.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

I Did It!

I reached my goal of averaging 5000 steps per day since coming back from the beach.  I actually exceeded my goal by nearly 1000 steps each day.  My average was 5931 steps per day.  I will be shopping for new underwear soon.

Initially, it seemed as though I had to be intentional about taking a walk each day in order to get in enough steps.  It seemed to get easier as the days passed.  It was a good thing to push.  It made me go to the church building one day and walk and to the school gym another day.  I find that doing something for the first time is often the hardest time.  Now, I've done both and I plan to go back.  Both places good and both have their advantages.  The church building is closer and has no parking issues.  The school has a track specifically for walking, which is better for my hips.  Parking isn't much of an issue in the summer.  I had trouble with my wifi connection at both places too, making it hard to distract myself by listening to the book I'd selected.

I knew going in that this first challenge was to get a benchmark and I would up my goals for the next time period.  As I was pondering what my goals would be, 65MD announced that he want to trim a few pounds and wants to walk with me at school.  That is most exciting for me and I know it will help me stay on track.

I am setting my next goal to be done by June 15.  I had originally thought I'd do monthly goals.  But I can already see that my summer will be more unpredictable than the rest of the year.  I have a trip next week, to see my nephew graduate from high school.  I'm sure that will impact my steps on the days we are there.  65MD is teaching only one class this summer - one night per week at the women's prison!  (That is a whole blog post.)  It is just too hard to factor in all of the variables and know which ones I can push through, like walking in the airport on travel days and which ones I can't, like hip pain.

With all of that in mind, my goal is to average 6000 steps per day between today and June 15.  I had considered saying I needed to go someplace to walk a certain number of times, but in order to get that many steps in, I will have to go someplace, so that seems redundant.  If I meet that goal, I will give myself a new dressy outfit.  I'll up my game again for June 16-30 if this gets 'easier' as well.

BTW, I weighed this morning.  I weigh 235.0.  That was my pre-vacation weight.  I'm not sure if I'll weigh every Wednesday or not.  Being the first of the month, it seemed like a good idea.  I might weigh again on June 8, I might wait until June 15, or maybe July 1.  I'll decide at the time what I want to do.  This is not supposed to be about weight.  It is supposed to be about health.  I confess, I still want it to be about weight!