yourgravity: ([stock] make dreams happen.)
This time last year I was a little ways into what would become another attempt in a long line of failed diets.  This time, I'd  chosen Take Shape For Life/Medifast, and initially I was really excited to be on the plan.  A friend of mine had amazing results on the plan, and I read all the testimonials on it.

It was so exciting when I chose my first month's food, and the huge box filled with all my little boxes of food arrived.  I was excited the first day as I packed my meals into my lunch bag for work.  And when I weighed for the first time a week and a half later and had lost almost 12 pounds, I was still excited.

About three months into the plan though, I was SO unhappy.  I couldn't have fruit.  I was severely limited in what vegetables I could have.  I couldn't have milk or cheese or any of the dairy I was used to - even in moderation.  When I went out to dinner with friends, I had to sift through my salad for things I COULD eat, and discard the things I couldn't.  I couldn't drink juice, or regular soda EVER.  I couldn't have a splurge day, EVER.

I had no energy to work out AT ALL.  I didn't feel full EVER, or satisfied by what I was eating.  I couldn't stop craving "bad" foods.

I was miserable.

One day about two and a half-three months on the plan, I was managing a concession stand for the local youth football league and I barely had a chance to eat ALL day.  That night I was so hungry that I gave in and ordered pizza.  And it was AMAZING.  And the next day, and the day after that?  I was so so so sick.  Sicker than I'd ever been in my life.

But it also showed me how unhappy I was.  The plan was so restrictive.  Instead of filling my body with natural things, I was eating prepackaged, tasteless meals.  I wasn't getting any GOOD carbs, natural fiber, etc.  And I wasn't getting healthier, or stronger.  I was getting skinnier (used as a broad term, I was still overweight, even having lost almost 30 pounds.)  I couldn't run or lift weights, and I was ALWAYS starving.

About a month later, I went off the plan.  The holidays happened, and I ate.  New Year's and Valentine's Day, then a vacation happened, and I ate.  I gained most of those 30 pounds back.  Then slowly I started going to the gym again, and thinking about the way I was eating - all of which led me to my recent huge change in my lifestyle and my foods.

Last year was an incredibly weird and challenging year - some good things happened, and some of the worst things I've ever endured happened.  I won't lie and say I didn't eat for comfort, but what I learned was that commercial weight loss plans aren't for me.  I won't be trying Nutrisystem, Weight Watchers, etc.

I'm happy with where I'm at - eating good foods that benefit me, like fruits, vegetables, and lean meats.  Making up my own recipes as I go along.  I'm losing slowly, and that's absolutely okay, because this time?  I'm happy.  I had to go through all that to get HERE.  And "here" is a very good place. 
yourgravity: ([the hunger games] gale/katniss; we coul)
I wanted to talk a bit about two things: what I've been eating, and what I HAVEN'T been eating.  I'm due a grocery store run to stock up today (I hope), and I want to branch out and try a few new things.  I also don't want to get burned out by eating the same things over and over again (although there is a lunch meal I've sorta fallen for recently.)


healthylunch

That is: squash, mushrooms, bell peppers, and onions.  The cool thing?  Everything but the onions came from our garden, so I know what went into growing them, what was put on them, etc.  I am trying to buy more fresh stuff, and I know sometimes that still isn't the *best*, but damn, organic stuff is EXPENSIVE.

Last night was my first big challenge.  The family wanted pizza, and even though the *idea* of it sounded nice, the thought of actually eating it?  No.  I thought of all that grease and dough and how BAD I'd feel - physically and mentally - and was able to say no pretty easily.  I decided to follow my impulse to eat healthy and I made:

healthydinner

Green beans (canned, yuck, but I didn't have any fresh ones), sweet potatoes with sea salt and cracked black peppercorns (SO GOOD I wasn't sure how these were going to turn out), and grilled chicken with Mrs Dash (salt free) Lemon Pepper and a little bit of mozzarella cheese sprinkled on top.  And it was good.  Really good.

Then later, because I was a LITTLE hungry and wanted a nice snack, some grapes!

healthysnack

So that's a typical day for me.  I'm trying really hard to only eat meat in one meal (usually dinner.)  I've had a few heavier dinners than I wanted, but it's mostly lean meat and lots of veggies.  The other day I didn't eat meat at all.  I want to start doing that maybe once a week.

Mostly as long as I snack on fruit/etc throughout the day, I'm doing pretty well.  I have the bad habit of getting involved in something and forgetting to eat, so I'm working on that.  I'm about to go make a smoothie, or try, since I don't have a lot to go IN it.

Now my next big challenge is exercising: I need to start doing more of it.  I'm DYING to get back in the gym for Zumba, the elliptical, WEIGHTS.  I MISS lifting weights, and the progress I was making.  So that's my next goal.

Later, lovelies! 
yourgravity: ([daisies] charlotte "chuck" charles)
I told myself I'd weigh today, and at the same time, told myself not to get upset if the numbers didn't say what I wanted them to say - that being any decrease in weight.  I approached this without a point of reference in mind really; I knew what I weighed about two months ago, and  I knew I'd gone up since then, but not how FAR up.  I didn't weigh when I got home from California to get an idea of where I stood, so although I *think* today is progress, I'm not sure.  So I'm considering this my starting point, and it will be interesting in about two weeks when I weigh again.

I'm not going to get on the scales every day.

I'm NOT going to agonize over every choice I make.

I'm not going to torment myself if I don't lose "enough," etc.

I had a piece of chocolate zucchini cake last night after eating healthy all day - in fact, I just realize quite by accident, I had NO meat at all yesterday.  I was a little hungrier than normal, BUT I ate pretty well.  I had:

  • 1 and 1/2 bananas for breakfast

  • Lunch was mixed vegetables (fresh squash, fresh mushrooms, onions, fresh bell and banana peppers) sauteed in olive oil and salt free Mrs Dash, and a baked sweet potato.  YUM.  It was a bit of a late lunch but it kept me full until early evening.

  • Snack was another banana.

  • Dinner was a huge salad, with mixed lettuce (including romaine), and baby spinach, with two hard boiled eggs.  I ate late because I got home from working on a friend's computer, so I didn't want anything too heavy.

So, I splurged on the cake, and I sort of wish I hadn't, but I'm not going to make myself feel TOO guilty.  That'll just be my splurge for awhile.  I really still am not craving soda at all, and I think if I have small "sweet" something every now and again I'll be okay.  I bought fresh strawberries to have at night if I need an extra snack/a dessert, so that should stand in for chocolate/etc.  It's just training myself to crave GOOD stuff instead of bad.

So anyway, long story short now I've rambled about what I'm eating (I'm about to make a huge smoothie this morning, YUM), I got on the scales, and I'm at 230.5.  The ONLY reference I have, like I said above, is where I was awhile back, at 232-233.  So I'm looking forward to seeing how the next week and a half-two weeks goes.  I am determined to get back to the gym this week so I can start adding some weights back into my work-out; I'm afraid to do TOO much without the weights to keep strengthening or toning.  I was doing so well on bench - so near my goal of benching 100 pounds, and I was starting on the military press, which was kicking my butt.  So I miss all of that, plus Zumba, and my time on the elliptical.  That's my goal for this week.

Happy Friday, guys! 
yourgravity: ([btvs] buffy.)
Healthy eating-ish update!  Hopefully y'all will start seeing a lot more of these.

I made a mini-grocery run the other day to stock up on a few essentials: some more fresh fruit, fresh mushrooms, and olive oil.  I can't stand cooking in anything other than olive oil anymore.  I've been trying hard to stay away from butter, although we had skillet corn the other night that I know my mother cooked in butter.  That's the hardest thing - living in a house with three other people, all who have or have had their own weight issues.  The South loves to deep fry things, or just generally indulge in good ol' comfort food, and the problem is, I love some of that stuff, too.  But it doesn't love me back.

Just since I started eating healthier, I FEEL so much better.  My stomach isn't upset like it was when I was eating junk, I'm tired at a decent hour again, and for the most part, waking up much earlier than I was before.  It's weird in a nice way to be ready for bed at 10:30 or 11 instead of 1am, and waking up at 7:30 or 8 is nice.  I'm working on training myself to get up earlier than that, and hopefully I will be soon.

I had two cups of coffee this morning but that was all I wanted.  I have had my coffee with sugar in it once or twice in the last week and a half, but mostly I'm putting honey in it.  I may start trying it black slowly so I'm not dealing with sweetener at all, since I know even honey isn't perfect.  I got rid of my Splenda, and I WANTED to try Agave, but didn't want to spend the money on it and not be sure if I'd like it.

I had sweet tea the other night at dinner and it was okay - too sweet, really.  I keep meaning to make some for the family, then I don't.  I haven't had soda in a week and truthfully, I haven't missed it AT ALL, which is amazing for me.  I don't think I'll have any problem just making it an every once in awhile treat.  So basically my ONLY caffeine recently has been my morning coffee, but it's good knowing that I'm not depending too much on caffeine.

That's it for today, I think.  I've been helping can and bag/freeze veggies all day; now we're making pickles, then I HOPE I have time to go for a swim. 
yourgravity: ([bones] angela.)
When I was in California recently, I felt so inspired by all the GOOD food choices I saw others making; when I came home, I vowed to start back eating healthy and make working out a priority again.  I was doing great before my Florida vacation, but then I was "on vacation" and when I came home, I didn't really get back to where I left off before.  But California was awesome - seeing things like Whole Foods, and so many healthy options was wonderful, and really opened my eyes.

A friend and I stopped at Cracker Barrel on the way back from Nashville, and I had one last splurge meal (their pancakes are FANTASTIC), and since then, I've done pretty well.  I'm a huge coffee / sweet tea drinker, so I've been trying to have honey in my coffee in place of sugar.  And instead of three cups, I've had only one or two.  I've been drinking mostly water, and only had one small soda when I went to the city pool the other day.  I felt so bad, but I had a hot dog - but I was starving, and you can't bring food in WITH you.  Ugh.

I've also been more active.  I've been on my treadmill twice, and swam for awhile in the pool on Tuesday.  I'm not fixating on any goals just yet or weights except being healthier.

My family wanted to go to an Italian restaurant last night so I got a grilled chicken salad.  Then I stocked up on fruits and snacks.  SO HAPPY.  I FEEL so much better already, and I'm really excited for garden vegetables.  Some are already coming in, and one of my goals is to try new things.  (Just not tomatoes.  Yuck.)

This feels REALLY good.  I was happily surprised I was able to do a bit on the treadmill; swimming felt good, too.  It's been so rainy here since I got back that I'm not sure how much I can do outside, but I'm trying to get out there as much as I can for the sunshine.  And I have my gym membership, so I'm determined to start using that more, too!

healthy1healthy2

Groceries, and then this morning's smoothie - before and after.  SO GOOD.

More healthy updates coming soon, hopefully!  I'm off to do some cleaning, mail out some resumes, and then eat a snack.  :)
yourgravity: ([the hunger games] gale/katniss; we coul)
I'm going back to the gym tomorrow, yay!  I can't remember if I mentioned it on here yet or not, but I joined a gym in town for a three month trial membership.  Whereas the gym I was at last year was a start-up - not much equipment, not very organized, crowded - this is a bigger, and all around nicer place.  For the first 12 visits, someone on staff works with us (my mom joined with me.)  Tomorrow will be my 4th visit, and I'm moving up in reps (from 1 to 2) and back on the elliptical.  YAY! 

I've missed this - working out.  It's my time to just push myself, but also shut off any worries/etc.  I get to breathe (and sometimes gasp), and de-stress.  Home-wise, we're eating healthier, and I'm back off sodas.  I saw myself starting to drink way too many.  I didn't like that, so that's over.  I'll have one every once in awhile, but not like I was.  I'm not doing anything too special - just watching what I eat, increasing the water I drink, limiting carbs, and working on being more physically active.  I miss Medifast, but I can't afford it. 

My head is full of thoughts tonight, so I'm going to go do some reading.  I'm caught in between like sixteen decisions to make about school - wanting to go back, not sure which avenue to pursue.  So I'm settling in to my evening routine - reading, then Doctor Who S1 and hot tea, later! 
yourgravity: ([stock] squee-worthy.)



So, [livejournal.com profile] twirly pretty much made my day today.  We are embarking on a storyline within our writing project that should be...amazing.  I am a very happy girl today.  Well, I try to be most days, but today especially.  I adore these characters.  I adore writing with Kay!

I was so exhausted today so I spent awhile napping, and that really helped improve my mood.  I was just so drained, and tired!  I feel better now and am going to settle in soon to do some reading, then head to bed.  Tomorrow starts a new week, which should be challenging, but good hopefully. 

In other news, I haven't weighed in probably three weeks, but I'm going to weigh soon.  I've started a Goodwill pile of clothes that are actually getting too big, which makes me SUPER happy.  Hopefully I can get some new pants and shirts soon, since I'm slowly getting back into things that were too small, but once I start losing more, I will need another pair of two of dress pants for work and a few nice shirts.  YAY!
yourgravity: ([stock] not lost.)



Just got in from an early 4th-of-July BBQ/hootnanny with the friends.  I feel so happy to have them in my life.  Tonight was a few people I'm used to and a few new people, and all around was a ton of fun.  We hung out from 4 until about 1am just laughing and talking and catch up, playing a (really horrible) game of volleyball and other stuff, eating great food, and having fun.  I feel so blessed in that aspect of my life! 

I made a HUGE choice tonight.  I signed up for Take Shape For Life and I'm over the moon about it.  It's a big lifestyle change, cutting out things like sweets, soda, and fast food (except for on an every once in awhile basis.)  For so long I resisted, thinking it was a crash diet, or a way of "cheating."  But now I can see that it will - hopefully - teach me how to make healthier eating choices, and do it in a way so that I hold myself accountable, but I also have a "coach," who's a good friend of mine who will help keep me motivated.  It must work, because her results have been amazing in about two years, and I've seen that happen, plus heard success stories, and had their program vouched for by a nutritionist friend of mine.

I've been wanting to lose weight for a LONG time.  That's no secret.  I need willpower and I need help.  I haven't been able to do it on my own, or by joining a gym.  I always give in and give up.  I always say that this time is different, then it isn't.  But I'm starting to get really scared for my future if I don't lose, and worse, if I keep gaining.  I'm hoping that by doing this - by investing the money in their food, their plan, and by basically giving myself no other option, that I'll stick to my guns and succeed.  I look in the mirror and I see that I'm disappearing into my weight, and that terrifies me.  I have to try to change that.

Otherwise, it's SO HOT here.  It hit 100+ again today.  They're talking about not shooting off fireworks for the 4th in town this year, which they ALWAYS do.  I'm worried about the garden and the pool.  I hope it rains soon.  *does a rain dance*  I want to be outside swimming and being active, but this heat is just stealing everyone's energy. 


 

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