Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A little freaking out

So Pete and I spent the weekend cuddled up with each other and the dog.  We shared every meal we ate so there was no going over on portion sizes.  We did some walking in the snow, but it wasn't the 5Ks that I had been doing all week at the gym

Monday morning I got up with a killer migraine.  Actually it started Sunday while leaving the Lodge.  I believe that I am allergic to reality and my brain decided to make sure I understood that.  I spent half the ride home sleeping off the migraine medication.  Then once home, I had a small dinner of some beans and toast and went to bed.  Monday morning the migraine was still there.  But I got up and started my morning routine thinking I could outsmart my head. 

Two things occurred.  One, my head won the contest of pain vs outsmarting.  Two, I weighed myself and found a 4 pound gain.  I was both hurting my my head and do frustrated and disappointed.  Then I was freaking out about it.  Considering I need to lose that 4 pounds to qualify for the surgery.  Oh and my weigh in date in Monday 3/5. 

So I naturally took more migraine meds and headed back to sleep.  Because at that time I could not deal with both things at the same time.  I spent Monday in my dark bedroom with the ceiling fan going, the furnace vent closed and the door closed.  The cool, almost cold dark room and sleep is what seems to help my migraine.

Tuesday morning I woke up with the after effects of the migraine.  While feels like a hangover from medication - I'm tired, feel a bit weird, my head is heavy and I could have easily stayed home another day.  But I didn't.  I got up and went to work.  Albeit, I was a crabby lady.  I had to apologize to Pete and really think about my words the rest of the day.  Somewhere along the day I decided that I needed to head to the gym after work.  And as we all know, me and the gym in the evening don't mix well.  But I was determined.

I spent and hour on the treadmill at the gym.  I was extremely hot, sweaty and tired at the end of it.  But I did it.  I kept telling myself that I did it.  I think that mantra makes most anything better.  I slept wonderful, all worn out and tired.  Then I got up this morning and went back to the gym.

The result?  I'm down about 2 pounds from yesterday.  Realistically I know that my 2 workouts did not accomplish this.  I think the moving and the exercising and returning to regular eating at home helped me.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Pete & Michelle: Unpplugged

Friday morning at 5 am Pete and I were headed here:  Gunflint Lodge.  We unplugged.  There was no internet or cell phone service within an hour of the lodge.  Nico cashed out in the backseat on the way there:

It was heaven.  I spent lots of time with my Nook and A Child al Confino looking at this:

The book was awesome. I've really been into biographies and real life stories lately.  The book was a freebie from BN that I heard about online.  It was haunting and funny and at times very sad.  But it is a great reminder of how the human spirit can overcome.

We had our own cabin and the view out the main window was this:

Right beyond the trees is Gunflint Lake.  There is a walking path between the window and the swing that takes you to other cabins or the lodge or down to the lake.  The snow drifts were perfect Nico playing areas and he loved going on walks and sniffing for all he's worth.  Pete and I loved bundling up and heading out to walk hand in hand.

My first blog video!  The lodge requires that you help feed nature in the winter.  So we would bring back big lunch sacks full of corn and dried seeds for the deer and the birds.  Pete decided to put the corn about 6 inches from the window and see what happens.  The deer came, Nico barked to protect us and the deer were gone.  But we kept trying.  Eventually Nico wouldn't bark, just whine a little and watch them.  It was cute.

The lodge has a wonderful restaurant.  The food was awesome considering it's in the middle of no where.  And the staff was very friendly, helpful and knowledgable about the area.  Pete and I asked question after question and they were all answered.  The owners even cam over during dinner to talk and welcome us there.
That's the view of the lake from my table at lunch. 

Unfortunately we had to head home Sunday.  I told Pete that I felt like we ran away for the weekend to hide and didn't want to return.  No internet/cell phone really forced us to relax and connect with each other.  We sat in front of the fire at night watching movies, cuddling and talking.  Really talking.  I'd suggest this to anyone. 

As we headed home, Pete had to drive about 3 hours in this:

Whiteout conditions along the North Shore.  Superior had 10-15 foot waves hitting the shore when we drove past several areas.  By the time we got to Duluth the snow had all but stopped. 

We've decided we need to unplug more often.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

...connected to the hip bone...

The other night Pete and I were cuddling and I was shocked to feel his hip bones.  Not that I didn't think he had them, but I hadn't really felt them before.  They were hard.  I mean, of course they were hard.  But they were prominent and hard.  I commented that I was shocked.  He said to me that someday soon I'd have them too.

Last night I went downstairs in my sleep shirt to let the dog out.  As he was prancing through the snow, I stood at the glass sliding door watching him, my hands on my hips.  My left hand felt something and I though man, I have muscles in my core.  Proudly I thought about all those strength exercises I did to build them.  Then I pressed inward and puffed my tummy out to feel the muscle better.  But it didn't give.  It was rock hard.  It occurred to me that it was bone.  Hard bone.

I have hip bones.  I smiled in the dark and kept feeling them.  Both sides.  I could feel the top of my hip bone, just forward of my sides.  I called the dog inside and ran up the stairs.  When I got to Pete I told him to feel my side and looked at home.  He too told me that I had hips and smiled at me.  Then he reminded me of the night not long ago when he told me I'd feel my hip bones too someday.  No they are no where near prominent, but they're there, waiting for me to reveal them.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Insurance Appointments...Check!

I've completed everything the insurance company wants me to for the surgery. I go in to see the nurse on 3/5 and will find out my surgery day then.

I have to say that although I really dreaded having to complete those 15 minute calls that couldn't be any closer than 2 weeks apart, I'm glad I did them. The questions asked are things that made me really think about my eating. What was I eating and when was I eating it and more importantly WHY was I eating it? I realized that I can make conscious decisions that are good for me and they can become instinctual. I learned that it's ok to leave food on my plate and walk away. It's perfectly fine to feel satisfied, not stuffed to the gills uncomfortable. I can survive without cake (I've been cake free for 3 weeks-lol).

I now see that the process to qualify for surgery isn't only about going through medical things, it's about learning to change your thinking for the future BEFORE you have the surgery do you're successful.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

225.4 Swimmin'...

Ever seen Finding Nemo?  There is a song in there about swimming, something about keep swimming.  When I have something that seems to be in my way or a hard day or whatever, I hear that in my head. 

Keep Swimmin' Swimmin' Swimmin'. 

I'm still losing a few ounces here and there so it's great.  I've been busier at work and that seems to hlep with snacking.  Only I pulled a muscle in my back again.  I'm currently sitting in my office chair with a press on heating pad on my back, tylenol in my system and pain.  Sitting hurts, moving hurts, bending is a no go.  Walking is ok for a short period of time.  Laying down in my sleep number feels soooooo good.  But seriously, laying isn't burning extra calories.

But you know what I'm going to do?  Keep Swimmin's Swimmin', Swimmin'.  I'm not going to let it get me down and I'm going to do what I can.

Monday, February 13, 2012

226.2 AND Non Scale Victories

The scale says that I'm 226.2.   This is what my weight tracker on Spark People looks like:

The dip in the middle of January was when I was sick after starting my Vitamin D treatment.  When I look at it, I'm reminded that while I feel frustrated with where I am, I am in a good place.  My weight has steadily decreased since December, even with not being able to work out until the first part of February.  Even more, what this says to me is that I can maintain a weight within about 5 pounds.  I told Pete that if we could combine his ability to lose weight and my ability to maintain weight, we'd be a superhuman!  He laughed.

I got in 5 days of exercise last week.  And in that I discovered sore hips.  They were so sore one night I realized that I was walking like a gun slinger in the OK Corral.  I got out the purple foam roller and had Pete roll me out.  Man can that guy apply pressure.  It was definitely one of those "hurts so good" things.  But it helped.  Then I asked one of the trainers at the gym how to stretch out my hips and ever since then I've been good.  This is a non scale victory!

I had an epiphany at the gym.  I realized that I was limiting myself to jogging intervals by staring at those minutes and seconds ticking away.  If I cover up that part of the treadmill and instead focus on the distance and aim for more each time, I am able to jog longer.  I did a 5K in just under 50 minutes which is a record for me. The trainer also reminded me to break up my cardio to give my body a rest and so that it's not used to one source of cardio.  So I tried this machine:  Cybex ARC Trainer.  Man what a workout!  I can feel it in my chest, my arms, my core and my back.  In addition, my legs were burning!  This is a non scale victory!

My last victory was the best.  Pete and I had a motorcycle event to go to on Saturday.  Friday afternoon I went shopping for something to wear.  For giggles I went into the Gap Outlet to see if I could find anything.  I did.  Lots.  I fit into not only the XXL, but some XL and some L items.  This is the same person who had a Gap Groupon about a year ago and had trouble finding anything that would fit me.  So I went home and pulled out some of the shirts that I've bought in the last couple of years that turned out to be way to small.  Some of them fit!  I had this awesome motorcycle shirt that I've worn once and it was so tight I was uncomfortable.  I put that thing on Saturday night and rocked it!  I got so many compliments on how good I looked that I felt awesome. 

Lesson:  the non scale victories are just as important as the scale.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Fabulous Five Friday

1.  I am down to 226 after working out each day this week!

2.  We have a banquet for our motorcycle club this weekend and I can't wait to see all our friends again!

3.  I took a shirt and sweatshirt that I bought 3 years ago out of the closet yesterday to try them on. I bought them, realized they were TIGHT, but could not return them.  They fit!

4.  I only have to work a half day today!

5.  I'm struggling with a new mask for my CPAP, but I'm determined to figure that thing out so I'm staying with it instead of giving up!

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Profoundly Pete

Over the weekend Pete and I spent a good deal of time away from home.  We actually went to the International Motorcycle Show Saturday morning with some friends.  Afterwards we had some time to kill and ended up at the Mall of America.  We were trying to think of something quick and good for us to eat.  Ok, I was trying to think of something to eat. 

When I asked Pete what he wanted he said (and always says) "It doesn't matter."  He believes that because he eats so little food that I should decide what I want and he will make do with it. That day though, he added another phrase that was so profound:  "I'm not food dependent."

My first though was how profound a statement.  My second thought was I want that. 

I want there to be a time where I'm not thinking about my next meal as soon as I finish the current one.  I want there to be a time where I look forward to food, but don't crave it.  I want there to be a time where I refuse that glorious piece of red velvet cake because I just don't need it.  What a foreign concept to those of use who have food issues and/or weight issues.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

The Unintended Results

Progress to surgery:

I have 1 phone call through my insurance to complete and about 4-5 pounds to lose.  Once those two things occur, I can schedule surgery.

As I was talking with the nurse from the insurance company yesterday I realized that going through this process has brought some unintended results.  The biggest one is that I am more aware of why I might be eating something.

I pretty much read her my blog post from yesterday.  When I did it, I realized that I do it more often than I thought and that it might be starting to become routine.  For example, Sunday I went to the grocery store to pick up some things for dinner.  And as I rolled my cart past the produce I decided that I needed cake.  It was a long weekend and I struggled through some feelings and awkward situations.  I didn't eat in those situations and I was proud of that.  But for some reason I decided, while standing next to the bananas and the mangoes, that I needed cake.  Oh, I DO remember why I decided this.  Pete and I had been to a birthday party the night before and we had to leave before cake was served.  So see, I needed cake.

But not really.  I left the bananas and the mangoes and headed to the bakery.  When I got to the cake cooler I stopped the cart and looked.  There were sheet cakes, cupcakes, slices of cake.  White cake, chocolate cake, brownies, marbled cake, white frosting, chocolate velvet with cream cheese.  I must have circled that cake cooler about 4 times.  Each time deciding that I'd get something, then telling myself that I get something else.  Finally I stopped and said to myself, "I don't REALLY need cake." and I left.

I never gave it a second thought.  I really thought about the cake.  Why I wanted the cake.  And in the end I had decided that I did not need cake to survive.  I went home and make lower calorie chicken enchiladas and ate dinner with Pete when he got home.  No cake needed.

I'm liking that I think before I eat.  Maybe I'll never get to the point where food isn't an issue, but I'm gaining knowledge to help me be more successful.

Monday, February 06, 2012

It's one of THOSE days

  • I went to bed late and didn't sleep very well last night.
  • The sauce from my lunch leaked out all over the inside of my work bag and it now smells like vinegar.
  • My soy milk exploded in the kitchen at work when I opened it for my cereal.
  • I forgot my cell phone at home and Pete had to bring it to me as I am expecting a call on it.
  • My insulated coffee mugs have been dripping the sauce every time I tip them up for a sip.
  • My contacts are either very dirty or dry or something, because they are fuzzy and I have to keep blinking to clear them.
It's one of those days.  I sucked it up this morning thinking that it can't get worse and I can make it.  However, when my contacts started getting the hazy film after about 1 minute that requires me to blink a several times to clear them, then repeat FOREVER, I had about had it.  My next thought was that I deserved chocolate or something.

REALLY?  I deserve chocolate?  For what?  What part of chocolate will solve those issues above?  None.  What part of chocolate will make those issues go away?  None.  What part of chocolate will make it all better?  None.

So here I sit, no chocolate, blinking away.  But thankful that I can fell the feeling of a crappy day, blink my eyes several trillion times and realize that food is not the answer.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Self Sabotage

I weighed myself this morning, like I have been for the last couple of months to see where my weights are on a daily basis. 


I was instantly disappointed in myself.  I had been down to a solid 227/228 post my illness.  Yet here I am creeping up.  I knew instantly why.  After the talk with Pete I understood that I am self sabotaging my weight loss.  When I met with the doctor about the gastric band, I had 7 pounds to lose.  7.  Seven.  Want to know how much I have to lose now?  7.  S.E.V.E.N.  I've not moved.

So what do I do about this?  I know what I need to do.  I know why I need to do it.  I know about when it needs to be done by.  Yet I sit.  I told Pete this morning that I need to get to the gym.  He replied with something about understanding that you can't make someone do something.  And he's right.  It's personal responsibility.  And I need to get some.

I know that tracking food works, but I have an extremely hard time doing it.
I know that working out works for me, but I'm struggling to get there. 

Bottom line is that I just need to do it.  I need to take my REAL SELF and understand that it will be ok to do this.  It will be ok to lose the weight and allow myself to have this surgery and get healthier.  The REAL ME is scared, but I'm trying to pull her out.