Friday, October 29, 2010

I'm a little frustrated

First of all I weigh 242. Just 2 pounds over what my lowest has been this year. Which is a good thing. Really good considering all that I did or really all that I didn't do over the later summer and this fall.

The frustration? Something I did at the gym yesterday aggravated my sciatic nerve. To the point where it was shooting fire from my mid left butt cheek down through the back of my leg into my calf. And when I say shooting fire, I mean fire. I couldn't sit very much in the chair last night and laid in bed. Nothing relieved the pain. Well, I should say that Pete tried putting his hand on the junction between my leg & my butt to see if it helped. I proceeded to mash his hand into the junction because the pressure felt good. Then he told me that I was breaking his wrist, so I let go.

Bottom line is that I didn't go to the gym today. Which, it the grand scheme of things isn't horrible. But it's frustrating to think that I can't do it. I mean I probably could go and walk, but it would be painful and I'm afraid of aggravating it further.

I will persist though. That 242 tells me that I'm on the right track and to keep going.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Dear Michelle

Dear Michelle (that's me),

I'm proud of you. I know that every journey has it's struggles and triumphs and yours is no different. I'm proud that you have decided to take control of your health. There are so many things that you can control and focusing on those is a great positive step.

I have to be honest. I'm a little sad that you didn't make more of the summer. Make more of getting in more physical activity outside. Make more of the fresh produce that is abundant that time of year.

But with my honesty and sadness also goes honestly and hopefulness. I know that you see what a difference a little change in your daily life can make to your physical health! I know that you see the effects of eating better and exercising. You're more alert during the day, you fall asleep and sleep better at night, you have more energy throughout the day, you feel better and you think better.

I'm proud of you for getting up at the ungodly hour of 5am and getting to the gym. It's early, dark and cold, but you know how important it is. I'm proud of you for logging your walks and your workouts to see what works and what doesn't.

I'm so very glad that you set goals. I understand that sometimes goals aren't met, but it's really about the journey to the goal, right? Not attaining the goal doesn't mean that the journey it's self is any less important. You get it.

So I'm looking for ward to your future and I know you are too.

Love Me.

Have you written a letter to yourself lately? If not, do it. Paper, computer or email. Send it to yourself and read it in 30 days, 90 days and 6 months. How are you doing?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Exercise Clothes

Now I have to admit that when I get up at 5am to head ot the gym the last thing onmy mind is what I'm wearing. I just hope that when I pull some yoga/running pants out of the closet and a shirt that they match. And come to think of it all my pants are black so really how can I screw that one up?

I get new shoes once a year. I've visited many stores in the area - running stores, walking stores, high end shoe stores and main street shoe stores. I did this last fall looking for the "ah-ha!" shoe moment where my feet would sing to me. They never sang and in the end the one that everyone recommended (but never had in my size) was the one I was already wearing.

I put my hair up in a ponytail. Well, whatever hair fits into the ponytail. Sometimes that means I have to wet it down because it's taken on a life of it's own overnight. And I make sure that all my make up is off from the previous night. Oh, usually I brush my teeth too. You know, just in case I have to talk to someone.

So when I read this article -> Stylish Workout Clothes I thought, really?

Newsflash: Exercise clothes aren'tlumpy and frumpy anymore.

Really? So when I'm sweating away to get healthy and feel better about myself I should be dressing stylish? I'm not in that gym to pick up men, one up the women or appear better than anyone else. I'm there to workout. Implying that I need to look stylish to do it someone takes away from the idea that I'm there at all.

I don't need to look stylish at the gym. I need to be dressed appropriately (no one needs to see my tummy or booty). I need to have the correct footwear for my feet. That's it. Nothing more and nothing less.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Starting Over or Continuing

This morning I got out of bed and went to the gym. Well, actually my alarm went off and my husband had to prod me several times before I got out of bed. He had to basically nag me about my promise to myself to start going to the gym again. I am thankful that he did.

I met with the trainer and set up some weekly sessions with her starting next week. I also told her how I wanted to do the C25K program starting next week. Then I got on that treadmill and started up. I did my 1.5 miles and some core exercises. (yay me!)

On the way home I thought about how I started again. But really I haven't started over. My goal is the same. My pattern is the same. I just continued it after some time off. So I'm not starting over.

Why is this important to me? Because if I'm starting over I feel like I was a failure previously. And I'm not a failure. I'm a woman on a journey. Sometimes the journey is swift and I cover many miles in a day. Sometimes the journey is slow and I struggle though a few steps a day. But I'm still on the journey.

Monday, October 25, 2010

I'm refocused

I think. No really. I am.

Saturday's Prior Fat Girl was very interesting. The first speaker was from Kitchen Werks . I already read labels and check my carbs and all that so I thought this would be old hat. However, Stacy made me think not only about carbs, but about how many ingredients were in my foods and how much sugar was in my foods. If I can't say the ingredient or can't understand what it is, do I really want to be putting it in my body? No. So Even though I got very few groceries yesterday it took me FOREVER because I was back to reading every label again. And I'm sure that I could do better and will keep reading.

The second speaker was Mary Langfield . I thought I had a pretty good grasp on getting healthy. But Jen brought up that there is all this emotional stuff that goes on with losing weight, changing out body image and prespective. Mary reminded me that I need to do something else other than eat to fill up my time and mind. She reminded me that I am good enough to put myself first and to rememeber that I am not alone in my struggles.

I'll have more to say about those things another day. But I was so inspired and energized during the session that I signed up for the next one in January.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

I'm here

I think I have social anxiety. Seriously. I get so anxious in new situations. Made dating really hard. Lol. But I push myself because I know it's good fir me and the right thing to do.

So I'm here at the Prior Fat Girl's conference. And I'm going in.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


I'm nervous. I'm ecited too. This weekend is the Prior Fat Girl Get Together. And I submitted my name to be a new Prior Fat Girl. Nervous. Excited.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pain and life

I live with daily pain. Physical pain. When I was a teen in the 80's there was little known at TMJ issues. It was this emerging physical issue in teen and young adult women mostly. And it will play a large part in my life, for the rest of my life.

It started out with headaches. Headaches that would last and never go away. Headaches for weeks. Headaches to the point that I would do almost anything just to get rid of the pain for a short time. Then short, intense earaches. Like a spike in my ear for 10 seconds. Then my jaw started locking open or closed and afterwards be very sore.

The first thing that happened was my parent's medical and dental insurers would fight over who had to pay for the cost of treating this. Doctors tried to put me on muscle relaxers. I was a teen aged zombie would slept my afternoons and evenings away. I remember laying down on the bleachers at my sister's softball game and sleeping. Not a good way to spend your teen years.

After that there was physical therapy, dental devices, psychological services, cortisone shots, counseling...none of which produced long term results. So they did surgery.

5 times, or about every other year for 10 years.

Currently I have no condyle head on either side of my jaw. It's free floating, of sorts. My other issue is that I seem to 'grow' bone or hardened tissue in diseased joints. Between that and the fact that the muscles in my jaw are so tight from lack of use...well, lets just say that my jaw is majorly screwed up.

After my last surgery in 1997 I was done. I never wanted to have surgery again. I was tired of the surgery, the recovery and it making no difference. So I kind of swore off doctors. In 2001 I got tired of living every day in pain. My jaw aches, no shoulders and neck and back sometimes ache, my head aches, I still get the ear pain and I can't open more than the width of 2 fingers.

So I went to a pain management clinic. I did this monthly for 4 years. I'm currently on pain meds, anti-inflammatory meds and other things to help. But I live with some sort of pain everyday.


Some days are better than others and I almost forget about it. Some days are bad and I wish I had never started this TMJ journey. But most days are in between somewhere.

Now, I say all this, not to ask/beg for sympathy. I say this because I am amazed at the number of people that I meet on a weekly basis who live in daily pain too. I am amazed at how few of us speak up about it and wonder why. I say this because I want people to know that they're not alone. I say this mostly because it's liberating to talk about.

Monday, October 18, 2010


Last week I went to a training for work. The MN Justice Forum was presented by the Citizen's Council on Crime & Justice. It's the first time that I've attended, but it's been held over several years. It was one of those all day trainings where several presenters were brought in to address many issues on crime and how it relates to mental health and other issues.

I left feeling energized, if not physically, certainly mentally. I've been in my field for 17 years. I've worked for the same agency, permanently for 14 years. I've been in my current job position for 5 years this month. No matter how much you do, you get stale. You get tired. You get bored.

That's why I love trainings like this. I love to have many people present on a subject to get the most from different view points. It reenergized me and I'm in the process of developing a study to do in the next year with a portion of our population. It's good to feel good again at work.

Friday, October 15, 2010

the scale

I weighed myself this morning. I should say, I ate a bag of candy last night then ate a smal chunck of feta cheese and about 15 small green olives. Can you tell I'm all about the sweet, then salty thing right now? The cravings, they are horrible. You'd think I was pregnant, but no, just PMSing.

So this morning I got on the scale. Fully expecting to have gained about 10 pounds since I stopped working out in August. Only to my surprise I have gained about 2 pounds. While I'd rather not have gained anything, I'm strangely ok with the 1-2 pounds.

Then I thought about the fact that I haven't been working out or watchign my eating and imagined where I'd be if I was continuing that process...

Thursday, October 14, 2010


I signed up for some more personaly training sessions yesterday. I'm not going to start them until I am mostly done with PT for my sciatic issue. So likely around November first I'll be back at the gym again.

It made me realize that I'll only have NOvember, December and January to reach my 70 pound goal. Then I got a little sad and thought about what it would feel like not to make my goal. All the hard work I started out with in February of last year and all the downhill spiral I took this summer. With about 40 pounds to go I can't see that I'll reach my goal. :(

Then I thought about it again. So what if I don't reach my goal? I mean really so what? I tried, right? I lost some weight, right? I know what I need to do to to lose the weight and how to do it, right? Who says I can't just be happy with the healthier me? Because really that is what this journey is about. Being healthier. So who says that I can't just be happy with what I did and set a new goal?

So, that's my plan.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Recipe Swap - Cranberry Orange Oatmeal

I love Caribou Coffee's Cranberry Orange Oatmeal. When I say love, I mean LOVE. As in I normally don't like cranberries, but this stuff is awesome.

Only I don't eat it very often. Probably because I instinctively know that while the oatmeal part is healthy, the rest is not.

Calories: 274 (not bad)
Calories from Fat: 30
Total Fat: 3.5 grams
Sodium: 200mg
Total Carbs: 87g (OUCH!)
Fiber: 8g
Sugars: 38g (OUCH!)
Protien: 15 grams (good!)

See? I knew it would be bad. That's 5 servings of carbs in one sitting. And while it fills me up, I think I can do better.

Better Oats has a line of oatmeal that is lighter in carbs and still filling & tasts great.

Better Oats:
Calories: 100
Calories from Fat: 20
Total Fat: 2g
Sodium: 220mg
Total Cabs: 18g (yes!)
Fiber: 3g
Sugars: 0g (YES!)
Protien: 4g

1/3 cup Dried Cranberries:
Calories: 130
Fat: 0g
Carbs: 32g
Fiber: 1g
Sugars: 25g
Protein: 0g

1 T Orange Marmalde
Calories: 49
Fat: 0
Carbs: 13g
Sugars: 12g

So I made my version of the oatmeal today. It's similar, but not quite the same. The intense orage & cranberry flavors from the Caribou aren't the same. But it's something that I can live with. I ended up adding less cranberries and lettering them plump while the oatmeal was cooking. Then adding the marmalde.

Monday, October 11, 2010


I found this questionaire at Never the Skinny Girl and thought this was a good chance to figure out some things about me.

1. What was your highest weight, what do you weigh right now and what is your goal weight?
My highest weight...whew, here goes...about 270/275. I wasn't weighing myself then, but I can tell from clothes that I found from that time.
My weight now is about 240. I was down further but have some sciatic issues that are preventing me from working out like I want to.
My goal weight? I know that my first goal is to lose 70 pounds and be about 185 pounds by 2/1/11.

2. What is your #1 motivation for losing weight?
I want to feel better. Physicially, mentally and emotionally.

3. Have you always been overweight?
No. When I was in elementary school, my mom had a hard time finding me pants because the super skinny ones were still too big. *sigh*

4. When you want to give up what inspires you to keep going?
The me I want to be. The vision in my head of what my life looks like.

5. What is the #1 thing you look forward to when you hit your goal weight?
Sopping in the 'normal' sections of clothing stores.

6. Do you have support on your weight loss journey?
Yes and no. I have support of blogs that I visit in that they inspire me. I have support from the gym recognizing my face each time I come in. However, I have to tell my family and friends that I've lots for them to notice.

7. What is your favorite exercise?
Lifint weights. I love the way my muscles feel tired afterwards.

8. What is the most important thing you have learned on your weight loss journey?
That it's a lifestyle, not a diet. I need to learn a lifestyle, not how to lose weight.

9. What is one thing you have given up that you miss the most?
Admittedly I haven't really given up much. I eat things rarely or in moderation to satisfy the craving so that it doesn't drive me batty to continue to have it.

10. What is your strategy for losing weight?
Slow and steady. Little lifestyle changes at time.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Could I? Should I?

I linked to a blog called Prior Fat Girl the other day. I've been following the blog since last winter when I was going to the gym every day and really motivated to change. She's having a get together this month with speakers and such and I'm going. I'm hoping that it's the motivator to get me excited again about working out.

Today she announced that she is taking submissions for additional bloggers on her site. And it got me to thinking. Wondering. Should I submit me?

I already like to blog and want to blog and do so often. I already like to blog about my struggles with exercising and eating. I like her (even though I haven't met her). I like what she stands for and how she went about her healthness journey.

I think I just talked my self into it.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

The experiment

I woke up late today. Too late to go to the gym. I'm having issues with sleep patterns again after being on vacation. I hope to get back to a regular one by the weekend.

On to my little expirament. After my shower today I put the heart rate monitor on and I've been wearing it all day. I'm going to do this today, tomorrow and Thursday. I'm thinking that I can average out the days and determine just how many calories I burn in a day. I know that it's not going to be spot on, but it should be close.

Monday, October 04, 2010

I love vacations

Seriously, what is not to love. You don't go to work. You see new things and new places. You eat. And eat. And eat.

I haven't weighed myself since we got back. I'm afraid to. My rings say that my fingers are not fat. My pants say that my waist and booty are not big. But I don't know what that pesky scale will say.

Before we left I bought a Polar T7 Heart Rate Monitor. I haven't been to the gym yet to try it out, but I did try it out a little at home. When we got home there was a card in the mail from the Y about offering a sale on personal training again. I am going to go in this week and sign up again. The trainer kept me accountable this summer and I need some help again. I also started physical therapy for my siatic pain. I have about 8 sessions over 4 weeks and in that time will learn how to make my workouts better again without leaving me in pain.

While we were on vacation I checked into Facebook and saw this: Prior Fat Girl's One Breath, One Step Event. I jumped on it. I signed up only after quickly mentioning to Pete what I was doing. I'm really excited about this. She had a similar goal that I do. She's struggled in the last years with weight on other issues. She is pretty open about her struggles and thoughts. I can't wait to learn more about being healthly. Not dieting or working out, but being healthy.