Friday, April 30, 2010

Dear Diary, I'm An Addict

Food Addiction - It's a touchy subject.

There are some people who believe that food addiction is a phantom disease - something made up by all the fat people to excuse their bad habits. I sincerely wish that was the case.

Food addiction is a struggle, as with any other addiction, and it's not just a struggle for overweight people. It's more than overeating, though overeating and binging is a huge portion of it. Food addiction also brings with it a total obsession with food, and a huge amount of guilt and shame. It usually carries a back story, the ever-looming question of, "Why do I do this and what am I trying to "replace" or "accomplish" with food?"

As a food addict, I have to make very serious adjustments to my life to accommodate the addiction, because it will spiral out of control very quickly if I'm not overly cautious. So what does overly cautious look like for me? Well...
  • Having my husband hide all sweets in the house (really well, because I absolutely will look for them) and rationing them out so I can't binge
  • Planning out any meals at restaurants before going to a restaurant, so I'm not tempted by the high calorie/high fat meals and foods once I get there
  • Not allowing the purchase of high calorie/high fat/not nutritionally dense snack foods, even for my children, because I will get into them
  • Working diligently to not wait too late to plan dinner, because if it gets too late (later than 4 or 4:30 in the afternoon), I will resort to fast food, delivery or take out
  • When dealing with a stressful or emotional situations, I make a very diligent attempt to fill my time with exercise, or some other distraction if exercise isn't possible, to avoid emotional binge eating
  • Never allowing myself to go more than 3-4 hours without food, because if I get overhungry, I will overeat.
  • Keeping a healthy, car-friendly snack, such as a fiber one bar, on me at all times, in case I get caught out and need to eat, because if I get hungry, I will run through a drive-thru, and will not make healthy choices.

In addition to making these, and other adjustments, to my daily life, I am also having to do a lot of soul searching and looking within myself, because as noted above, this is a mental struggle. And if I don't work to identify why I am addicted to food, I will never fully recover from my addiction, regardless of my weight. And just as with any other addiction, it will be something I will have to keep in constant check, because it will be very easy to end up right back where I am with my weight without ever realizing what happened if I become too complacent.

Is it difficult? Very.

Is it conquerable? Without a doubt.

Will it ever completely go away? Unfortunately, probably not.

Is that okay? It is with me.

Why is it okay with me? Well, here's the thing: I'm not thrilled about having this struggle in my life. However, I am so much more than my struggles. I will not be defined by my addiction. It may be a part of my life, for the rest of my life, but it is not who I am. Sure, I will have to be on my toes, make more adjustments than most, and continue working to make sure I'm not eating for any reasons other than to fuel my body; however, my life is so much bigger, grander, and more awesome than a few extra steps to ensure I'm as healthy as I can be.

I'm a food addict. And though that affects my journey, it won't cause me to fail my journey. I will overcome this. I will succeed.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Elementary, My Dear Watson

If I've heard it once, I've heard it a hundred times: Read the labels on what you put in your mouth. But, for some reason, we all seem to think that nutrition, calories, and fat are logical enough that we don't need to do that. WRONG.
I am finding in this journey that one of the most important things that I can do is to READ THE LABELS. I'm obnoxious about nutrition, specifically calories, these days. However, it's an important key to my success.
How obnoxious, you ask? Well, I'm keeping up with my caloric intake throughout the day. I know precisely how many calories I've consumed, how many I approximately need for each meal, and by the end of the day, there are no surprises or freak outs. What makes me able to do this? You've got it - labels and nutritional information on the foods I'm eating.
A perfect example of this in action and things not always being as they seem, I had an extremely busy day recently, and absolutely had to run through a drive-thru for lunch. Burger King was on the way, so that is where we chose to go. I starting thinking and made the "obvious decision" to have the grilled chicken sandwich. I pulled out my blackberry and did the research on the nutritional information - 400 calories with no sauces. I decided to check one other option before ordering, and looked up the Whopper Jr. with no mayo and lo and behold - 290 calories. Who knew?
There are many websites that provide the nutritional data from chain restaurants. I have found that looking at the menu online at home, and researching nutritional information before ever getting to a restaurant makes my success at that meal significantly easier. Planning everything out ahead of time allows me to not be quite as tempted by the things that I'm choosing not to eat, as well as helping me make sure that I'm making the best choices.
Reading the labels and nutritional data does take a little extra time, but the extra few minutes that I put into researching what I'm eating in addition to my working out is definitely paying off in big ways. I'd say that I am more than worth the extra efforts.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Somehow Already Stronger

Week 2, Day 2 of P90X Lean

Today's workout was CardioX, which is a little sampling of several of the other workouts. After only eight days completed, I'm surprised at how much more accomplished I am in a lot of these exercises. I'm finding myself able to push a little harder, stretch a little further, and complete a little more than the last time I attempted it.

The first week that I did the workouts, I did everything I could just to get through the dvd, and I didn't really keep up with what I specifically could or could not accomplish, but I do remember feeling like I was marching or jogging in place around 10% of the time.

This week, I attempted every single exercise, and was able to accomplish at the very least a modified version of every single exercise with the exception of The Dreya Roll, which my gimpy knee completely prevents. So for that one minute of the workout only, I marched. For every other minute, I was doing the movements, in one form or fashion.

I'm continuing to look for new ways to encourage, push, and motivate myself to work harder, eat healthier, and consistently make better choices. One tiny thing I've done, is I have added a small pink bracelet to my right wrist. My children are on board with Silly Bandz mania. One of the sets we have acquired is the "pets" set. I have taken the little pink pig from that set (seen right) and added it to my wrist, just as a visual reminder that nothing tastes as good as thin feels.
I'm also trying to think of some visual way to mark the pounds lost on this journey. I'm toying with something along the lines of a paper chain or marbles in a jar. But I'm still brainstorming around it. I'm open to suggestions if anyone is a creative bug out there. :)
I continue to look forward to what tomorrow brings. I'm doing this. I'm REALLY doing this. And I'll say it again and again ... if I can do this, YOU can do this.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Monday Weigh In

Monday Weigh In Stats
Start Weight: 280.0
Last Weight: 279.2
Current Weight: 274.3

Weekly Loss: -3.9
Total Loss: -4.7
Here's how last week breaks down:
For the most part, I made very good choices with my diet, sticking mostly to whole foods, lean proteins (chicken, fish, egg whites), vegetables of multiple colors, and whole grains. I did have a total of two "cheat" meals for the week, on separate days. I had Zaxby's for lunch one day, and I made homemade beef stroganoff one night. I'm working my way toward only having one cheat meal a week, but all-in-all, I'm pretty pleased with having two for this past week.
Other than some moderate to heavy cleaning this week, the only activity that I had was P90X Lean. This has been a bumpy road, but it's more than obvious that the activity that I'm getting with the set is proving to be enough to help me shed the pounds. If I had to describe my first week with P90X at my weight, I was say I survived. I'm rather anxious to see where I will be at the end of this week.
General Week Overview
All told, I'm pretty proud of last week. I definitely have a lot of room for improvement, which totally sets me up for my goals for this week. I absolutely cannot complain about 4.7 pounds in a week. And in other news, I did measure my waist yesterday and discovered a 2.25 inch loss on it already. So, plain and simple, what I'm doing is working. My very first mini goal is 28 pounds, which is 10% of my body weight. At the end of week 1, I'm right at 17% done with my first mini goal. If I continue at this pace, I should reach my first mini goal within 6 weeks. So, I'd have to say at the end of this week, I am "Happy Dance" Happy. And a Happy Dance is just that much more activity done for this week. ;)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

A Fourth Done with Phase One

One week into P90X; almost four into my journey: Check.
I'm feeling a lot of emotions about my journey thus far. I've had some moments that I'm SO proud of, and some that I regret. I've had some moments that I can't believe I was able to accomplish what I did, and some that I know I won't be able to accomplish for quite some time. I did some things that definitely worked toward reaching my goals, and some things that worked against them.
But all-in-all, I would say that in spite of the slip ups, failures, and unaccomplished things, I am stepping in the right direction. If I had to choose one emotion to sum up the journey thus far, I would have to say PROUD; because in spite of everything, I am actively pursuing a healthier lifestyle. I am actively pursuing weight loss. I am actively pursuing being more active. I am actively pursuing making consistently healthier food choices.
Week One of P90X Lean: Survived. And I couldn't be more excited and proud. More so, I can't wait for the day that I am no longer "surviving" these weeks, but I am completely DOMINATING them - and it's coming!
Week Two, here I come. I fully intend to make you better than Week One.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Foodie Friday really does eat 5 times a day!!

So here we are, is it Friday already? My entire abdomen is still sore from doing Brazilian Butt for the first time yesterday. Shouldn't my bum be sore? Oh well, I'll take flat abs, too!

I promised some food ideas for eating those 5-6 meals a day for this week's blog. Now I am a working mom, so I literally have to take some time in the mornings and at night to pack my cooler for the day (yes, I really do this lol).

I posted my breakfast recipe I make in my first blog-that's my first "meal of the day" and at only 250 calories, it keeps me full until at least 11, which is awesome. My 2nd meal can consist of any of the following combos, and are all around 200 calories:

South Beach Meal Bar
Lowfat Cheese stick and crackers
Banana with Nutella (YUMMM!!!)
cottage cheese and jam

This is what I eat about a half hour before I leave for the gym on my lunch break-I prefer to eat lunch after I get back from the gym, to hold me over so I don't over-snack in the late afternoon.

My lunch almost always consists of a turkey sandwich on rye (rye has proven to keep you fuller longer) with lowfat mayo or hummus, and lots of spinach and tomatoes. A real belly filler coming in at only 300 calories!

My afternoon snack can be any of the following as well:
Handful of mixed nuts-Planters makes good varieties for digestion, energy, etc
100 cal bag of popcorn
Cheese stick and crackers (I could eat this 5 times a day, seriously)

Then for dinner, I'll try to hold off until about 6:30 to eat, which is just late enough so I don't have night time munchies. I'll make this a bigger meal with lean protein, lots of veggies and a carb. Also, believe it or not, pasta has a lower glycemic index than even brown rice, so I've been incorporating whole grain pastas into our dinners lately, and indeed it is true. Glycemic index works:

Soooo...try it for a week-I know it requires getting up a bit earlier to prepare this, and it's not as easy as going through the drive through, but it's SOOO worth it! I have recommendations for smart drive through choices as well, but, that's another time.

Here is what I'm going to be cooking up tonight-in honor of my recent trip to Jamaica, where the food is so wonderful, tasty AND healthy!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Just Keep Swimming

"When life gets you down, do you wanna know what you gotta do? Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming."

Yesterday was Day 4, and I rocked it!

I did my Yoga X, and I was actually feeling pretty good, so I decided to push forward and also do a set of Kenpo yesterday evening! I felt great, and I am totally proud of myself for pushing through.

I was very afraid that my body would hate me for doing so much yesterday, but the fact is, it isn't any more sore than I already have been. I slept hard (when my household allowed - sleep is a bit of a commodity with a baby in the house), but other than that, I didn't really feel any negative effects from the double day.

I am still having some issues with my gimpy knee. I'm going to start wearing my soft brace during my workouts to see if the additional support will help.

I would say, I have officially survived this blip in my journey, and I continue to trek forward.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Sore Muscles, Energetic Days, and Hunger Pangs

Well, I'm coming into Day 4 of P90X Lean, and I am FEELING it!

Since beginning my P90X journey, I have discovered muscles that I had no idea existed. I'm sore in the expected places - abs, glutes, quads, calves, and all the arm muscles - every single one of them. And I'm sore in some really unexpected places, like the tops of my feet (new this morning), around my rib cage, and in my arm pits. I would have thought that the sore muscles would hold me back in my workouts, but the amazing thing is, once I get warmed up, they aren't sore at all; so it doesn't affect my workouts whatsoever, which is definitely a welcome discovery.

I've also noticed that I have more energy. Now, this isn't like a blatantly obvious energy boost like you see on vintage cartoons when a character drinks from a bottle labeled "pep" and suddenly can lift school buses. This was a more subtle change, and I almost didn't even notice it. It showed up in little ways, like when I am cleaning, I don't have to take as many breaks; and in the evenings I'm not quite as completely drained. But, it's there. And I would imagine that will only get better as I continue.

Another big difference I'm noticing is I'm HUNGRY, like all the time. I have to be honest here: I always thought all these fitness gurus were out of their gourds talking about eating 5-6 small meals a day. I mean, really, who is hungry enough to eat every 2-3 hours? And who has the TIME for all that craziness, anyway? But I have found the word "meals" is deceiving. I am eating every 3 hours or so, because if I don't, I get absolutely famished. No kidding. I'm talking, "my stomach is gonna eat my liver if I don't eat right now" famished. So I've started incorporating light snacks into my day. Snacks like a serving of raw baby carrots (14 carrots) with a wedge of Laughing Cow cheese and five Triscuit Crackers - a snack that has a grand total of 155 calories, and has proteins and carbs to carry me through to my next meal and is actually amazingly filling.

All-in-all, I'm really amazed at the immediate changes I'm noticing in how I feel. I can't fathom what kinds of changes I have to look forward to in my future if I'm feeling this many changes less than a week into it. Whatever they are, they're patiently waiting for me, and I can't WAIT to reach them.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I Get Knocked Down, But I Get Up Again

So, last week I only had my Monday Weigh In blog entry. And this week I missed my Monday Weigh In. What's up with that? Have I given up? Am I losing steam? In a word: No. However, I definitely hit a small stumbling block in my journey.
Last week, my grandmother passed away. And as I've made evident in previous posts, I'm an emotional and stress eater. And I had the perfect opportunity to "feed" that problem. As a strong part of Southern Hospitality, though I do understand it is done in some other parts of the nation as well, it is an absolute given that food will be provided for the family of the lost loved one through the funeral. So lunch and dinner was provided, every day, for several days, with enough leftovers for all the family to bring some back home.
The problem is, I'm in the south. And of course, as was expected, foods like potato salad, macaroni salad, pasta salad, macaroni pie, fried chicken, country ham, buttered corn, dinner rolls, and no less than a half a dozen different varieties of dessert appeared as our meals. Country cooking at it's best was available at my finger tips - in large quantities. And there were really no other options. So, I ate it. And by the end of things, I was not just indulging; I was overindulging.
So on Sunday, I did a preweigh in, and was not thrilled, but not surprised. On Monday, I weighed in, and was two pounds heavier than I was Sunday morning, which all told put me at 279.2. Discouraging. So I thought back...What did I do Sunday? I had an awesome food day and I started P90X. Was the two pounds just now catching up from the week or was it due to water retention from my muscles starting to be worked out? Who knows.
But here's the deal: weight loss is a journey. And the theme of the journey is a Japanese Proverb: Fall seven times; stand up eight.
Some may say that I'm showing weakness by stumbling and setting myself back so early in my journey. I'm here to say, that's when most failures happen. The beginning of the journey is about establishing a new lifestyle and teaching yourself new habits - and that's no easy task. I've spent ten years establishing and solidifying the lifestyle I've been living. It's not surprising that two weeks in, I had a relapse. And I can't tell you the number of times I have started a weight loss journey, made it to right here, stumbled, and accepted failure. Translation: I gave up. What is going to make any journey successful is seeing it to the end in spite of falling down.
This is me, dusting myself off, picking myself up, and continuing my journey. This is me doing Day 3 of P90X. And this is me setting new and tough challenges and goals for myself, because if I shoot for the moon, I may miss....but I'll still hit the stars!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

P90X - Day 1

Day One P90X - Completed!
When I tell people that I am doing the P90X program, I typically get some variation of the same response: Good luck with that....It's very hard and it will kick your rear end. Not so politically correct translation: Ummm, fit people struggle with that program, girl. What are you THINKING?!
So you wanna know my very transparent and honest opinion of my first day with the program? Here you go: They're right. However, there's definitely a but to that statement.
Fit people can definitely benefit and struggle and have to push through this program. I can definitely see how a year from now, I can be 100 pounds lighter, and still be totally challenged by this program. BUT (told you there was a but), with modification, and doing what my body is capable of doing, and pushing myself to the point that is my limit, I was able to complete about 80 - 85% of Core Synergistics on my very first attempt.
Where I struggled may not be where you struggle, but was expected for me personally. I struggled with all variations of pushups and planks. I had to not go quite as deep with lunges and stretches on my left side due to a weak knee. However, every bit of everything I accomplished today was tons more than I accomplished yesterday.
In all sincerity, considering where I am starting, and the weight at which I am starting, I found myself surprised, if not shocked, that I was able to complete as much as I was able to. Here's the thing...P90X is a real workout. There is nothing easy about it. It has to be intense to provide the results that it does. But, don't let the hype scare you away from it, because it CAN be modified to fit your abilities and THEN it has plenty of room to make it more and more intense to continue to work your muscles in a way that makes you stronger and leaner and fitter.
I'm looking forward to Day 2, Day 30, Day 90...and I'm looking forward to deciding which version of the 90 day program I will be starting for Day 91. Goals = within reach. If I can do it, YOU can do it.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Kim's Corner

Eating right, nutrition-always seems to focus on what we are eating and cooking for dinner, no? What about the rest of the day? You can't just survive a transformation in your diet by simply changing up what you and your family eats for dinner. It's 24/7 (as I write this, I was up at midnight last night eating chips and queso, good job).

In our society, most people skip breakfast, then either get fast food or fraternize with co-workers over buffalo wings at lunchtime, then go home and eat a "healthy dinner" and think that's enough-it's not! Your body's metabolism needs a kick start early in the morning to get going all day-that is how our bodies operate. Studies show that people who eat a good breakfast WILL lose weight faster than people who skip. Why? Because when you fast overnight and then through the morning, your body goes into 'starvation mode'. It goes back to our hunter/gatherer ancestors-your body thinks food supply is in short demand, so it holds on to any food intake as if you won't be eating again for a while. Hence, skipping breakfast, when you do finally eat lunch, your body will hold on to it for fat. I see so many women making that mistake of skipping meals, thinking that will help them lose weight-it might for a day, but it will backfire on you in the long run. Still want to skip breakfast? I didn't think so.

The key to keeping your metabolism up is to eat small meals, 5 or 6 times a day. This keeps your blood sugar and your energy at a steady rate all day long. I try to eat my breakfast every morning by 8:00 or so. For all you moms out there, treat your eating like you would a toddler-snack time at 10, lunch at 12, snack time at 3, and dinner at 6. I know it may seem like you are eating all the time, but that's exactly what you should be doing. Any one of my given "meals' is not a full plate of food, it's more like grazing. I promise if you do this, you will see instant results in weight AND energy. Even if you do have the occasional midnight queso fest...

Next week-I'm going to write about exactly what kinds of foods you should be eating throughout the day.

Here's what I get up at 5 am every morning and make for my husband and I for breakfast-(if I can get up, you can too-I've never been accused of being a morning person)

1 whole wheat english muffin
3 eggs
3 egg whites
2T milk
picante sauce
lowfat shredded cheese
salt and pepper

Just scramble up the eggs and milk, divide in 2, sprinkle on cheese and picante sauce! I give each of us a half of an english muffin each. I throw these into tupperwares for us to bring to work. It's only 250 calories each and loaded with protein to keep me full. Well, until 10am ;-)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Weigh In, One Day Late

All righty then. I did my official post-vacation weigh in on my regular Monday, but due to craziness in life, didn't get around to posting it until today! Here we go:

Start Weight: 280.0
Last Weight: 276.2
Current Weight: 276.6
Weekly Weight Loss: +0.4
Total Weight Loss: 3.4 pounds
Well, there it is. I was pretty pleased that over my vacation, in spite of pitfalls, some bad decisions, and the water retention that I always experience when travelling and walking, I only had a 0.4 of a pound gain. I fully believe that when I have my weigh in next Monday, the scale will reflect a small additional loss, because I did experience a bit of a fluid retention issue, which would reflect on the scale this week, but not next.
In other news, I managed to reinjure my bad knee on the trip. I'm babying it, and today I'm going to do some stretching and some minor things to try to get me over the hump, but ultimately that is postponing my start of P90X for a short period of time. I'm pretty bummed about the whole situation, but I'm just gonna have to roll with the punches just a bit.
Only 6 more days until my next weigh in! I can't wait!!
PS - I peeked at the scale this morning...good things are happening! ;)

Thursday, April 8, 2010

I Feel the Need...the Need for Caffeine

Back on December the 31st of 2009 I took my last drink of caffeine. I was one that would actually start first thing in the morning drinking Diet Mt. Dew and then continue to drink it off on throughout the day.

Well on December 31st that all changed and I made a commitment to give up caffeine and now I drink somewhere close to a gallon of water every day.

Now I will say that first week was rough. I was fortunate enough to not experience any of the headaches that typically come with giving up caffeine, but every evening that first week I would feel like I had hit a wall. Just felt run down and exhausted. After that first week though, I have never felt better! Believe it or not a lot of the morning pain that I would experience from playing basketball or some other activity the day before went away.

I have now begun the exercise program called P90X. I am now going on my second week in the program and granted it is a tough program, but well worth the effort. I have changed a lot of my eating habits and again have never felt better!!

So if caffeine dependence is an area you struggle in I encourage you to try and kick the habit! You will feel a lot better if you do and it will be worth it in the long run!!

Decide. Commit. Succeed. Bring It!!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Destination: Vacation

Test Number One - Easter weekend: PASSED.

Test Number Two - Spring Break Vacation: IN PROGRESS

I'm leaving tomorrow for our Spring Break Vacation. We'll be out of town for five days. The destination spot we have chosen is a location that we frequent, and it's a spot that, as with most vacation spots, is known for delicious foods, and I'm not talking about amazing Brussels sprouts.

Admittedly, this is going to take some courage, and will power, and manipulation. I'm not going to be able to go and have cocktails, steak and dessert. But, with the right balancing of calories, I may be able to have water, a small lean steak and a few bites of a dessert - and still feel like I'm getting to take full advantage of the foods that I love to enjoy while away.

I refuse to go on vacation and feel deprived. But more so, I refuse to go on vacation and set myself back in my journey. I am taking my scale. I'm watching my weight. I'm going to adjust as necessary. I'm making sure I get plenty of activity in addition to the much needed relaxation. And yes, I am going to make mostly healthy choices.

I have set my boundaries. I'm approaching this vacation with an 80/20 rule. 80% of the time, I will make awesome choices, stick to lean proteins, complex carbs, and stay away from over-processed, bleached white flour, simple sugars, etc. And I'm allowing 20% wiggle room, to permit those little indulgences that I simply can't resist. I will control those by using good old fashioned portion control.

I'm not sure how frequently I'll be posting during my vacation, but Monday is weigh in day and I'm SO EXCITED for it to get here already! That scale won't lie about my time away - and for me that's a beautiful thing.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Proof Is In The Pudding..Errr...Asparagus

Monday Weigh In, and after a holiday weekend, I am excited to report that it was awesome!

Official Start Weight: 280.0
Last Weight (4/1/10): 278.6
Current Weight: 276.2
Weekly Loss: -2.4
Total Loss: -3.8

I will begin P90X at the end of this week, and my journey will begin to really take off. Until then, I will continue to work in extra activity and continue to make healthier eating choices.
I'm smokin' what I'm sellin', folks. And it's working. This is just the beginning for me and I have a long way to go, but I'm heading in the right direction. Are you?

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Just One Little Splurge?

It's Easter weekend; and Easter is the unofficial kick off of Spring, complete with family gatherings, cookouts, barbeques, and tons of sweets. While at these functions, it's so easy to fall into the trap that I have allowed myself to fall into so many times - a trap that has ultimately lead to weight loss failure.

It's easy to convince myself that because this is a special occasion, it's okay to allow myself just this one little splurge. Just this one time, it's okay to have that burger, or those ribs, or that extra slice of cake. Seems logical, right? After all, a diet isn't failed on one splurge....

Here is where this theory falls apart: there is ALWAYS a reason to splurge. Reasons such as: birthday parties, Easter candy, spring cookouts and bonfires, weddings, July 4th barbeques, vacations, back to school bashes, Halloween parties, Thanksgiving dinners, Christmas candies and Christmas dinners, New Years Eve parties, Valentine's Day candy...and before I know it, I'm right back at Easter again. So the "just one little splurge" that I allowed myself turns into a series of chronic splurges. And with a series of chronic splurges comes weight gain, and disappointment, which in turn for some (me!) leads to emotional eating due to depressed feelings because of the scale moving the wrong direction.

I am highly knowledgeable as to what is unhealthy, high in calories and fat, and not going to help me be successful in my weight loss journey. And the crazy thing is, almost every person who has ever tried to lose weight is too. We can all pass the "eat this, not that" quiz with flying colors. So it's typically not a matter of not knowing what is right; it's a matter of not making the right choices in spite of our knowledge. And oftentimes we excuse our bad choices by saying, "It's just this meal. Just this one splurge. Just this one time." And that one time leads to another, and another, and another.

Now, I can't address this without touching on one other school of thought, and that is the mindset that "It's okay if I eat this. I'll just work it off later." This is a completely healthy line of thinking under two conditions: 1-You don't eat more calories than you can logically burn off and 2-you are working to maintain a weight, not lose weight. If you are trying to lose weight, then the formula needed is burn more calories than you consume. If you are consuming a higher number of calories thinking that it's okay because you are exercising and burning calories, you are most likely going to get frustrated (and most likely discouraged) very quickly, because your scale isn't going to move very much, if at all. That's why the most successful formula for weight loss is change of diet WITH exercise, not one or the other.

One other thought from this weekend: As long as we're not dwelling on what we don't have and enjoying what we do have, we'll never feel deprived. Look at it this way: Brad Pitt is a very attractive man. So is my husband. They are both handsome in different ways. But if I focused on the ways my husband doesn't look like Brad Pitt, I could ruin my perfectly wonderful marriage. Do ribs taste delicious? You BET! But does grilled chicken taste delicious, too? ABSOLUTELY! And as long as I don't try to compare my grilled chicken to the ribs, I won't mentally ruin my lifestyle change.

As for my Easter weekend, it was just the way it should have been. It was filled with family, friendship, laughter, fun, and yes, food. I was tempted by the foods I shouldn't eat, but I stood my ground and didn't allow myself to "splurge" on them. And I very much enjoyed my grilled chicken.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Kim's Corner - Foodie Friday

Hi, my name is Kim and.....sounds like the awkward beginning of a 12 step program meeting, although I guess you could call it an addiction-food. And I don't want the cure.

Food-it's my passion and my preferred way of expressing my artistic side. My can-opener wielding husband asked me once (while being forced to watch Hell's Kitchen with me one night) 'why do they get so upset when they don't like their dishes?'. So I asked him how he'd feel if someone said his kid was stupid-the sentiment he felt had something to do with a 2x4 to the head of the person who might say that. So, he gets it now. It's an art, a creation, a veritable smorgasbord of senses we serve up and present to others with a "TADA!" and hope it's met with approval. It's a skill that is practiced, honed and fine tuned, that we get better and better at. Much like golf, which I've recently undertaken-the better I get at it, the more I want to play.

People want to know where I learned how to cook, and assume I learned it from my mom-Mom cooked, but not out of love for the food but out of necessity of feeding her family. My mom readily admits her daughters are better cooks than she and is happy to sit back and have us play chef during the holidays. Where I learned, was classic Food Network. When I was a new stay at home mom, I spent countless hours on the recliner rocking my babies to sleep, and fearing the slightest disruption would awake them from blissful slumber on my chest. So I usually had the remote in my hand to amuse myself. Once I had enough Jerry Springer to make me feel like my life was, indeed, up to par, I became fascinated with Food Network, since, well, suddenly not going to the office every day anymore, I had time for such things. My previous idea of cooking was frozen chicken breasts and cream of mushroom soup, but I digress...

I once heard something Mario Batali quoted on his show, and it stuck with me. He said the Italians only dine out at restaurants to give Mama a break from washing dishes. They don't go out to eat for good food, and I definitely share that sentiment. I'm hard pressed to find something I enjoy that I can't make better at home. People think this is unbelievable, but it's like this secret club I feel like I've been let in to, and the irony of it is, it's just so ridiculously easy. I only dine out as a means to have an adult dinner with my husband or to catch up with a girlfriend, purely social in nature.

Once I realized what truly "good" food is, it sparked the health conscious beast that lied in me. VERY dormant, I might add. I had lived my life as a steady size 8-10, living off of processed food and restaurant fare, which, in my early 20's didn't affect me too much. As I navigated through that decade, I realized I wasn't 19 anymore. Thankfully, my new hobby was in line with this. Much like the Italians, I began to see the value of choosing 5-6 fresh, quality ingredients and combining them into something that was far superior to anything I could order off a menu. My cooking style is much like that, I don't like to over manipulate foods, over sauce or cover up anything-I love to choose ingredients that can each shine, individually and combined in a way that complement each other.

Earlier this week, I remarked to my husband now that with this full time job and our hectic schedule, I was disappointed in what my "cooking" had morphed into. It's not me, and I have been missing out on something that really "fills my cup". The same day, Shannon asked me to write this foodie blog. This has inspired me to get back to where I want to be with food in my life-as difficult as that may be. This blog has taken me near an hour to write, as I've already had to play referee at least 13 times, so you can imagine how much uninterrupted time I get to pursue my passion. I think the men got it right with golf, as that requires leaving the house for a few hours!. Since Monday is the only day I come home after work and we eat together, I am committing to making this my REAL cooking day. I'll even break out of my box of "tried and trues" and try something completely different.

Here's one of my all time favorites, always a crowd pleaser, as well as healthy:


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Uphill Battle Begins: Measurements and Weigh In

Here come my starting weight and measurements:

Height: 5'8"
Weight: 278.6
BMI: 42.3
Waist: 49.25
Hips: 59
Chest: 49
Right Arm: 16
Left Arm: 16
Right Thigh: 28
Left Thigh: 28

So I must admit, this is my body. And I'm so totally disgusted and freaked out to see that in black and white. Who has measurements like that? Whose hips are only nine inches smaller than her height? This girl. That's who.

But, at the same time, it's so motivational. Because I can say that I NEVER want to see those numbers like that again. I never want to see my thighs measuring where I want my waist to be. I never want to do these measurements again and be ashamed.

I'm ready to bring on the progress. I'm ready to bring on the work. I'm ready to bring on the sexy. And I can't wait to do this again in a month. And then lather, rinse, repeat...until I have the measurements that exceed my expectations. I'm ready. Are you?