Day 7 of 30: Food Journal Update

No blogging yesterday, and no food journaling, either – way too long a day. I did workout and did pretty well with the water, but it was the kind of day where you get home and barely have the energy to get ready for bed.

Today was better. Not as tired. Worked out with my trainer tonight – upper body and core. I am going to be so sore in a couple of days!

As part of my November goals, I committed to keeping a food journal. It’s a tool I’ve used in the past and I found it really useful when I previously lost weight. As you might imagine, the food journaling has been interesting. I haven’t altered my diet as of yet, but I am amazed – in a bad way – at how much crap I’m eating and how few vegetables I’ve been getting in. Today was worse that usual, but not by much:

  • Mini Wheats and skim milk for breakfast
  • a slice of Pizza Hut Triple Crown pizza, a Diet Pepsi, coconut Oikos Greek yogurt, and ripple chips and dill pickle dip for lunch (I was ravenous and obviously made bad choices)
  • DQ for supper: cheeseburger and onion rings with a medium Diet Pepsi (in a rush and tired and no food in the house)
  • 3 mini Mars bars
  • banana

Yuck, right?!? No wonder I’ve been feeling like I have no energy and am tired all the time, and I can’t lose weight – I’m eating like I want to pack on a few pounds. I’m fueling my body with crap! Nothing like keeping a food journal to open your eyes to what you’ve really been eating and to motivate you to do better.

I’m definitely keeping up with recording what I eat. Gotta keep myself honest, and it’s really pushing me back toward meal-planning, too, which is a good thing.

My Weight Gain

It’s been so long since I blogged that I don’t even know what to write. That, actually, has been keeping me from blogging – not knowing what to write.

Let’s go with a status update. I’ve gained weight. To the point where I don’t feel comfortable in my skin. I’ve been working out, but the eating….My eating habits have been terrible. I’ve veered into eating whatever I want territory. That would be fine, I suppose, if whatever I wanted happened to involve a lot of veggies, lean protein, and otherwise wholesome foods; however, too many starches and too many sugary treats have made their way into and onto my body.

I know what I need to do in order to start feeling better and eating more healthfully, and yet, I’m struggling to do those things. Carbs keep winning. At least that’s how it feels.

I should not be losing to food. Like, what is that idea? That food is some sort of powerful foe to defeat? It’s not, and I don’t think that food should be some sort of enemy.

I’m not sure how to approach weight loss this time. I sense that if I don’t deal with the mental aspects of what is leading me to keep gaining weight, that I won’t ever be able to maintain a healthy weight. I’ve read lots of books and articles on weight loss, and I had thought that I found the solution a few years ago (working with a dietitian and personal trainer who provided coaching and support), but when my dietitian moved into a different field and my personal trainer moved away, I gradually slipped back into old, less healthy habits. I’ve started working with a new dietitian, but I don’t really like her approach that much (tracking what I eat and counting calories) because I don’t feel like it’s sustainable. Plus, personality-wise, I don’t feel like we “click.” I’ve recently started with a new trainer, too, and I really like her, but I’m only a couple of weeks in so it’s too early to really judge how things are going there.

Weight loss is work, despite magazines yelling at me that I can “Eat More, Weigh Less.” Chopping up veggies, packing healthy snacks, bringing lunch to work, meal planning, food journaling, counting calories, finding time to workout, actually working out, grocery shopping, avoiding unhealthy foods, convincing yourself that you don’t want that chocolate treat. This is WORK, and I am tired, mentally tired. I guess that’s what’s holding me back. I KNOW that weight loss and what I need to do to achieve it are hard and require a certain level of mental commitment. I am not there right now, and I don’t know how I’m going to get there.

 

Back to Working Out

Hockey is officially over for the season and I’ve taken advantage of the room in my schedule to get some great workouts in this week. Did yoga a few times, lifted weights a few times, and rode my stationary bike a few times. In addition to my suddenly lighter schedule, the weather is finally improving and we got above freezing late this week, which has really helped to boost my mood. It’s totally sloppy outside, though, since we got the most snow we’ve had in years this winter, so my workouts are still restricted to my basement, but it’s sure easier to feel happy when it’s not snowing – again – and it’s light out before 8:30am.

On the eating front, I’ve been using the Lose It app for a few weeks now and have lost about 4 lbs. My fruit and veggie consumption is much improved and treats have been few. I feel pretty good about my eating, though I know there’s still room for improvement. This weekend is challenging, what with the Easter Bunny leaving treats tomorrow and visiting my parents for a couple of days, where I tend to want to snack on whatever happens to be lying around and end up consuming way too much. So far, though, I’ve been doing quite well avoiding the cheese and crackers and ice cream. Tomorrow will be trickier, with it being Easter and my mom planning a big meal, but I’m allowing myself 2 treats tomorrow and will be tracking my food. Food journaling helps keep me honest.

Adding to the motivation is the fact that my husband and I are celebrating our 15th anniversary in a month and we’re heading to Hawaii (thanks to reward points from our credit cards) for a week. Nothing like knowing you’re going to be in a bathing suit to give yourself a little kick in the butt to workout harder and eat better.

I’ve never been to Hawaii before. Have you? We’re going to Oahu, which is totally not my vacation style – I usually like more laidback. Any recommendations on things to see and do? Pearl Harbour is definitely on our list, but we don’t really have anything planned beyond that.

Caught a Fall Cold. It Sucks.

I have been hit by a fall cold.  When I woke up yesterday morning, it was with a very sore throat and I was super dizzy, but pretty much only when I was lying down.  I honestly can not remember a time in the past when I experienced dizziness like this.  It was sort of like when you consume a couple of bottles of wine on your own and then lie down and try to steady the world by putting your foot on the floor…not that I have ever done that *shifts her eyes guiltily.*  Anyway, Sudafed is getting me through the day and keeps the dizziness at bay.

I figured since, with medication, I felt good enough to go to work I could go see my physio.  I was sure to wash my hands thoroughly so as to minimize any transmission to the outside world, and I also warned him that I was sick.  Let’s hope this doesn’t get passed on.  My kids and husband are so far fine, so let’s hope that keeps up.

So, the physio visit went well, with no acupuncture/dry-needling involved today, because apparently my hips are the most level they’ve been since I’ve been seeing him.  Apparently all the stretching is paying off.  Now I get to move on to strengthening exercises, which doesn’t sound like a big deal, but considering that during the past several months I have been limited to foam rolling, stretching, and pretending I’m a pin cushion (aka acupuncture), I feel like it’s a big step forward.

My workouts have been few and far between, but I have started working with a dietitian and have started losing weight.  I’ve also been drinking lots of water, so my skin’s looking pretty good.  I’m drinking 2L of water per day (about 8 cups), plus whatever other beverages I happen to drink, so I’ve been fully hydrated for the first time in a long time.  When I started working with this new dietitian, I had to track everything I was eating and drinking for a few days.  There were a couple of days where I consumed 2 cups of water!  No wonder I was so parched at the end of the day.

Off to yell at my kids to go to bed, and I’ll probably crawl in soon, too, even though it’s only 9pm.  I am totally wiped.

How are you celebrating the arrival of fall?  I’m hoping it’s not with a cold like me…

Summer: Now Just Around the Corner

If you read Kat’s blog over at Tenaciously Yours, you’ll know that she’s on her honeymoon, cruising the Mediterranean.  While she’s away, she’s posting some of her own material, but is also featuring some guest bloggers.  I was honoured to have her ask me to guest blog for her, because I love her blog and I find her posts super entertaining.  It’s not unusual for me to laugh out loud  as I’m sitting in my kitchen, reading the latest about her life.  So, cruise on over, check out my post about my summer fun checklist, and then peruse some of hers.  You won’t be disappointed.

My first week of work at my summer job was mostly good. It’s nice getting back into a routine because it keeps me from snacking at all hours. I packed my lunch most days, had lots of veggies, made some pretty good snacking choices, drank more water, and ended up losing about 1.5 lbs this week.

Workout-wise, though, I slacked.  I did some core and hip-strengthening exercises, but otherwise nothing else this past week.  I’m booked in to see a physiotherapist next week, so we’ll see what she says about the whole hip-slash-running situation.  I plan to get a run in tomorrow and I’m definitely going to schedule workouts into my calendar for the upcoming week.  I think the key is going to be to workout right after work, before I really wind down.  At least next week.  And then my kids will move with me for the summer, so I’ve got to figure out how to fit in my workouts after that, since I’ll be solo parenting most of the time.  My husband will be there sometimes, since he travels to the city I’m living in for my summer job a couple of days per week, usually, but it’ll definitely be challenging to wrangle the kids on my own.

How do you make sure you get your workouts in, and how’s the summer shaping up for you so far?

 

Procrastination, Food Journaling, and Sharing: All in a Day of Non-Work

I just knocked a big to-do off my list.  It’s something unpleasant that I’ve been putting off for several weeks now, and it’s a gigantic relief to finally get it done.

Do you ever procrastinate?  In this case, my to-do item caused me so much anxiety just to think about it that I definitely avoided it as much as possible.  Not the best policy, I know.  You’d think eventually I’d be grown up enough to face things head on – but, apparently not.

Kind of a funny day today.  Woke up to a slightly sore IT band (lateral knee).  Not completely surprising, considering my run + workout yesterday.  So, I succumbed to excuse-making and didn’t go for a bike ride, though I pulled my lovely gel pack out of the freezer and iced my knee several times today.

I’ve got an easy 6k run on the agenda tomorrow.  Unless something happens to my knee overnight, I’ll be heading out there, but I’ll be looping close to home just in case I have to cut the run short and hurry home to ice.  If I do have to cut it short, I will either stationary bike or lift some weights instead.  No excuses allowed.  Make it work.

On the eating front, I’ve been food journaling as of late and now it’s time to Focus on Weight Loss.  For real.  No more procrastination when I comes to nutrition, either!

The beauty of food journaling is that you can’t kid yourself about exactly what you’re consuming.  If you don’t write it down, it’s easy enough to forget that extra slice of bread in the afternoon, or those few extra bites of lasagna you hoovered, or even the fact that you powered through oatmeal and a smoothie for breakfast, and then added in a piece of toast that your daughter left behind.

Let me tell you, my food journal is telling me that I am eating WAY too many starches.  It’s just that simple.  I worked with a dietitian all last year, so I’m pretty aware of what my diet should look like if I’m focusing on weight loss, and I am currently not there.  I’ve boosted my fruit and especially veggie intake over the past couple of weeks, and that’s fabulous.  But…I’m not only eating too many servings of starches, but also not the most nutritious forms of starches that I could.  As someone with PCOS (as I’ve mentioned before here and here), my body is not great at dealing with starches, so when I closely monitor the amount and type I consume, weight loss goes SO much better.

My nutrition action plan for this week:

  1. Keep up the good work with the veggies!  Make sure I get at least 4 servings per day 5 of 7 days this week. (I think I’ve been averaging 5 per day, so I feel good about this goal.)
  2. Food journal at least 5 days.
  3. Limit the starches to what I know I should be eating, and focus on getting whole grains most of the time.
  4. Limit myself to 2 treats this week (1 on Sunday, 1 next Wednesday).
  5. Track how much liquid I’m drinking at least 4 days this week.  Since my training is increasing, I’d better make sure I’m staying sufficiently hydrated.

Ugh, gold. What was I thinking?

As a reward for meeting my goals this week, I will get a polish change, because even though my spa day the other day was fantastic, I hate the colours I chose.  Not a big deal, but it’s a tempting enough reward, I think, to give me the extra kick in the pants I need.  [And, wow, can I get any more vapid and superficial?!?]
Also, thought I’d share a picture my daughter took of my husband and me on Sunday.  Pretty good photography for a 5 year old.  I’m totally bragging and bursting with pride, because that’s what moms do, right?
Ooh, and before I forget, check out this post from Kat over at Tenaciously Yours, and then head on over to http://www.refresheverything.com/greenvilleartscouncil.  As I former band geek (clarinet) and avid reader of Kat’s blog, I wanted to share this great cause with ya’ll.
So, confess: are you a proscrastinator or a just-get-it-done kind of person?  Don’t worry, I won’t judge.  I’ve been rocking the procrastination thing for YEARS….though I am getting a little better.

 

The Weight Loss Adventure Continues

Now that the term is pretty much done, it’s time to get back to work on improving my fitness and…losing weight.  During the school year, I decided that I just couldn’t make weight loss a priority, given my schedule.  For me, anyway, there’s a certain amount of stress that comes with trying to lose weight.  I find that it takes mental fortitude to consistently make good food choices and turn down those not-so-healthy temptations that arise, and when I’ve got the stress of school and trying to fit in the rest of my life, well, there’s not a ton of energy left to devote to weight loss.

To give you a quick recap of my weight loss so far, my weight at the beginning of the school year was 147lbs, per this post.  I didn’t track it diligently, but it hovered just about 145lbs for most of the school year.  Oh yeah, except for over Christmas holidays, where I ate like crazy, didn’t work out much at all, and gained, like, 8 lbs over 2 weeks.  Luckily, I went back to my more healthy diet and the weight came off fairly quickly, and then held fairly steady.

As of this morning, I weighed in at 148.4lbs.  I gained about 3 pounds over the last couple of weeks, and I can definitely chalk that up to the fact that I basically sat at my desk 12-14 hours per day and ate more junk food than usual.  Sure, I got in a couple of workouts, but they weren’t enough to balance out the lack of activity and increase in chocolate consumption.

I never dreamed that I would be able to make it through 3rd year without gaining back some of the weight I’d lost.  As some who’s struggled with emotional eating, I wasn’t confident I would be able to manage the stress this school year without resorting to chocolate and starches for comfort during tough times.  Now that I’ve managed to maintain my weight-loss through a very stressful and busy stage in my life, I feel confident that I’ll be able to lose more and then maintain that, too – as long as it’s reasonable weight, I suppose.  A net 1.5 lb gain at the tail-end of the end is not a big deal in my mind, considering I’ve lost over 30 lbs since the end of my first year of dentistry.

To go from maintaining my weight to actively losing weight means that I have to make some changes, though, and I don’t just mean physical ones.  I have to be mentally committed to weight loss or else I won’t be able to make the long-term changes I need to.  Keeping that in mind, I’m laying out some short-term goals for the week:

1. Go through The Beck Diet Solution Workbook and get ready to make the mental shift for weight loss.

2. Track everything I eat at least 5 days this week.

3. Eat at least 4 servings of vegetables per day at least 4 days this week.

4. Limit my treats to 3 this week.  The fact that this is cutting back is a clear sign that my diet is definitely not as healthy as it was at the beginning of the school year.

I’ll be back tomorrow with fitness goals for the week and maybe some pictures of beaver bones, per Kat‘s request in her comment to this post.