Tag Archives: healthy living

Preparation for a Change

So yesterday wasn’t a total win…
But it wasn’t a total loss either.

I ate things that I did not want to eat
(a piece of pizza instead of the lunch I had planned)

And had a slight binge
( five 90 calorie special k cereal bars that don’t even taste that good)

But

I tracked everything. All 61 points of it.

Yes, double my daily allotment of points.

There are some things I’m feeling positive about this morning, however.

First off, I went grocery shopping yesterday and have really made strides in transitioning my fridge and pantry over to more real food and cutting out processed foods.

Btw-I am amazed at how much I think I already know about healthy living but really still have to learn. Just reading the ingredient list on things is so eye opening. And I’ve always looked at nutritional info and ingredients on things I buy, rather obsessively, but now the ingredient list holds more weight than how many calories or how many points something may be.

Having lots of good-for-me options is an empowering way to start my day (though by no means foolproof).

Second, I have already mapped out my food for today and I’m committing to sticking to that plan.

Third, my sister is coming when she gets out of work and we’re doing one of the Fit Mama workouts I used to do 2 years ago…when I was in the best shape of my life and training for my half marathon.

I feel prepared today.

One day at a time.

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Feeling Lost

It has been months since I have blogged…and I have to admit I am not even reading the blogs that much anymore.

My life has drastically changed once again…considering that I am currently 27 weeks pregnant with our second child.

I am beyond excited to meet our new little boy (yes…we are having a boy!!) and feel so incredibly blessed for all of the amazing things in our life.

However, like always, I come back to the blog when I am facing a struggle with my health and eating habits.

Stopping running for me, while some can run during their entire pregnancy, is a no-brainer. However, the decision to not run while pregnant has taken its toll.

Physically I have done really well, tracking my nutrition and calories to have a completely healthy pregnancy. I have been gaining as I should, but slowly and in a healthy way. As of about 24 weeks, I had gained approximately 10 pounds.  I was thrilled with this since I think with my daughter I gained 12-15 in the first trimester!

However, the last month, I have started to derail.

It started with some halloween candy (always in moderation at first of course) and turned into numerous (I mean NUMEROUS) major old school binge sessions.

It feels terrible and it is that out of control feeling creeping back into my life, after so many months of feeling relatively good.

I am trying to get to the bottom of it…

why I feel like I can’t get back on track

why I have tried starting over so many times only to fall (and fail) time and time again

why with my husband’s loving support, I get angry at him

why I continue to sneak food and hide from others how much I eat

why I feel this urgency to eat really fast and shovel it in before someone tells me to stop.

I don’t know.

I’m lost…for now.

But looking for answers. Looking for clarity. Looking for a TRUE fresh start.

Hopefully I find it all soon.

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Sweat is Beautiful

20120320-060945.jpg
I’m really proud of our workouts we are doing twice a week…I’m usually dripping with sweat when we’re done.
And I love that feeling when it’s not even from a cardio day…but our weights day.
I’m still finding it hard to convince my friends that lifting heavier weights is not going to bulk them up…especially when we’re doing a cardio type circuit training to build muscle strength.

I always have to laugh and I want to tell them how
hard people have to work
how much effort it takes
how heavy my husband lifts at the gym
and the amount of calories he needs to consume
In order to build the muscle he builds.
If it was as easy as benching 20 lb dumbbells, 20 times, twice a week
we’d certainly be surrounded by a lot more buff men!

But old myths die hard…and I can tell deep down, they still are picturing themselves with big bulging muscles!

Anyway, I’ve had one solid week of being back on track…so blogging about it definitely is helping.
Keeps me focused.
Keeps me positive.

This beautiful weather isn’t hurting my positive outlook either! 🙂

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Intervention Needed

I’ve been MIA for quite a long time…my last post was over a month ago in fact.

Things have been good overall.

We are very happy in our new home…everyone is healthy, happy and well.

We are spending a ton of time with our families…thrilled to have them so close by and finally able to do so.

I got a new job…yes, another new job.

And this one is not a temporary maternity leave teaching position…

it is a probationary tenure-track position!

And while this new position is a blessing…it means I have now started two new classrooms up in a matter of 4 weeks.

As any teacher knows, the beginning of the year is when you face all of the stress.

And just as I was starting to get settled in my first job, I was offered the second job.

and had to start over again.

I’ve been at my new job one week and one day. So not quite settled yet, but waaay more so than last week.

Last week I was getting up at 5:15 every morning and going to bed between 12 and 1 every night.

I was wiped.

I am not sure how I put in that much effort without crashing, but I did.

My motto for the week was that there were just not enough hours in the day.

My thing is, I don’t mind working super hard for a job. In fact, I like working hard at a job I enjoy and want to do well at.

I only get stressed when I want to do more and don’t have the time to get it done, particularly when I am making full use of every hour that I have and not wasting a second.

So you can probably guess where this rant is going.

Health-wise, I am doing horribly.

I am eating badly.

I am exercising about once a week.

I am training for a half marathon in another week and a half but this past weekend, I even skipped my long training run.

Not the end of the world, you might say. Sure, except when it has been the only run I’ve been doing each week, it is kind of a big deal when I miss it.

I was doing well leading up to now, at least continuing to train, despite being noticeably weaker and slower and putting very little effort in.

My hubs and I had gradually built up to where we were running 11 miles last week. I was 100% planning on running the half on October 16th. We were going to do another 11-12 this week and then taper next weekend to about 9 miles.

But then I had my 5th meltdown in the last month on this past Sunday and cried and whined my way out of my long run.

I’m a mess.

I feel like crap.

I need help.

I feel like an addict because of the fact that I want SOOOOO badly to stop this terrible cycle of eating badly and not exercising and yet I keep making the decisions that send me in a downward spiral…day after day.

I can’t seem to get a grip on healthy living and now that my goal is to be a good role model for my daughter (and that is what is supposed to be motivating me), I am filled with deep shame that I am putting my selfishness ahead of her.

Then the shame over this makes me feel like crap…so I eat something unhealthy and comforting to feel better.

And…well, you get the idea.

I really do need help.

I hate the way I feel.

And as I try to figure out what I was doing 8 or 9 months ago when I was in a really great groove, I think back to the fact that I was blogging pretty regularly and constantly reading other people’s healthy living blogs and feeling incredibly motivated by them.

So I am reaching out…to the healthy living blogging community. And asking for help.

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Scared of Slipping

As of late, most of my blog posts have been extremely positive and uplifting.

I feel like I have finally found the right path for my journey to health.

I am full of hope and excited about life.

Well, that is partially true.

I would say 90% of me is doing really well. Maybe even 95%.

But there is 5% of me that lets a little bit of self doubt creep in,

the 5% that knows I always slip up.

Sooner or later.

And part of me feels like I am just waiting for that to happen.

 

It does feel different to me this time. It really does.

 

I’ve had a couple of small “slip ups” in the last couple of months where I

*haven’t been mindful of what I’m eating

*have eaten things when I was full or didn’t really want to be eating them

*have done small sneaks of food or taken too many unaccounted for nibbles

but

for the most part, I’ve done a pretty good job being healthy

and it’s been nice to not have guilt play such a big role in my life anymore.

 

 

I feel as though I have turned a corner because my view on things is very different than it used to be.

 

My husband and I are both feeling incredible and much more self confident.

We view this as a life change and not just a temporary diet and exercise plan.

We have eaten out many times and still made healthy, satisfying choices.

We have made it through holidays and birthdays without using that as an excuse to make unhealthy decisions for ourselves.

 

But I also know that when I am doing well, things always seem amazing.

That is why I wrote this a year and a half ago:

Letter to Me

to remind myself why I shouldn’t get lazy and let myself slip up…

why I shouldn’t test myself.

 

I really want to be believe that things are different this time.

I’m confident, but a little scared at the same time.

Only time will tell.

Today I started the day with a great workout and a super healthy, satisfying breakfast.

One day at a time.

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How Did I Get Here?

Yesterday, as I was browsing the news feed on Facebook, I came across a girl from my high school.

I didn’t know her that well back then because she was a few years younger than me, but I have been following her weight loss journey since we became FB friends about 2 or 3 years ago.

This was her post:

125 pounds.

Wow.

This girl has undergone a complete transformation.

I have been able to watch this girl literally shrink before my eyes.

We connected via FB messages and I told her how inspired I was by her and she responded the same to me.

As I thought back over the last year and a half, I thought about how I have seen countless status updates and pictures of her going to the gym, spinning, running a half marathon (70 lbs heavier no less), and just constantly being active and healthy.

It occurred to me that there was

no mystery

to how she had lost all that weight.

There was no magic trick or diet pills.

There was no weight loss surgery or expensive trainers.

There was nothing but sheer will and determination to live the best life possible.

Did I mention that this girl also beat Leukemia a few years back as well?

Ya, she is pretty badass.

 

I realized that how we get back to healthy

is no mystery.

We all know the science.

That is not what this post is about.

I believe the missing piece of the obesity puzzle

is actually figuring out how we got to the

unhealthy point

in the first place.

 

As I look back over my life, I realize I like to play the “I was just always fat,” card.

But as you can see, I wasn’t fat out of the womb. 🙂

That’s me on the left with the blond hair. See, I was skinny once.

And pretty darn adorable.

But by second grade, I was already getting chubby.

How does that happen by age 7?

Why was I the one in my family who turned to food?

When everyone else was normal sized?

 

My mom used to joke that when I was a kid, she would always know where I had been

because of the trail of plastic American cheese wrappers I left behind.

 

I think that issues with food start small and it starts young.

I was the middle child and I know I had middle child syndrome.

I think I always intrinsically felt inferior to my older sister, even though I completely looked up to her and loved her.

Actually maybe because of how much I looked up to her.

I was more on the shy side where she was more outgoing.

She was super smart and super talented, reading and showing off her artistic skills at a very young age.

I know I always felt that I was in her shadow.

 

I don’t think it was anything that anyone did.

My parents never made me feel bad about my weight.

They were always super supportive of when I would try to be healthy.

They were always there with a shoulder to cry on when I got sick and tired of being the fat girl.

I had an extremely blessed and happy life growing up.

This is not some tale of a childhood trauma that made me who I am.

 

I think sometimes it can just happen because of life’s circumstances.

It started young

and then that became who I was.

 

I don’t remember the first time I was called fat, I just know that I always WAS.

I just always saw myself that way.

I knew it wasn’t normal and I knew that there was something wrong with me

(in my little kid mind anyway).

I started sneaking food and I started mindlessly picking.

Being in my house meant I was rummaging through kitchen cupboards, in search of my next snack.

I knew all of my mom’s hiding spots for cookies or treats and would regularly check to see what was in the stash.

I’m not talking cookie jar hiding spot here…

I’m talking about a underneath a cupboard in the dining room

or

in the upstairs hallway in a laundry basket.

If it was in the house, I would seek it out.

I had already become a sneaky eater…a habit I am trying to break still today.

I don’t blame my parents for how I turned out…(except for the good parts of course).

🙂

At the same time, I do think it is obvious that there a lot of little things along the way that contributed to my behaviors.

Not bad parenting things…normal human behavior-type things.

Things that I can do differently with my daughter.

 

1) I can’t sneak food…she will know.

And she will copy me.

2) I can’t use food as a reward or as a way to comfort.

Not for good grades

or a bad day

or because the Mets won the World Series

(a girl can dream, can’t she?)

(This is not one I credit my parents with either…I have realized it is just society in general that associates rewarding one’s accomplishments with food).

3) I can’t eat healthy leading up to some big event, like a vacation or a wedding…only to splurge and go nuts at said event with reckless abandon.

Healthy is all the time…not just a temporary thing.

Stick that yo-yo where the sun don’t shine.

4) Family time (though we will eat family dinners together) will not be centered around meals, restaurants, desserts, party food, etc. or watching TV

(or other activities equally proficient at the art of time suckage).

Family time will consist of board games, walks, sports, reading, etc…or any other non-food related activities that we enjoy.

 

This is not to imply that my parents didn’t do these things for me growing up.

We did have very active lives in many ways and I feel that I was pretty well rounded.

But it is the overall way of thinking that needs to be different.

 

Healthy living is all of the time…not some of the time.

Who knows all of the exact reasons why I turned out the way I did.

And in all honesty, I am not entirely upset that I spent two-thirds of my life being insecure, morbidly obese, and shy.

It gave me something to overcome

and as a result

I am stronger today.

And will continue to be strong for my daughter.

I mean, look at that face.

🙂

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Amy versus the Banana Bread Muffins

Currently they are in the oven.

Typically this would mean I was preparing to binge.

But not today.

I don’t feel it.

I don’t know if it is a leftover high from my run yesterday.

I don’t know if it is because I have logged and stayed within my calories everyday for the last 2 weeks.

I’m not sure what it is, but I know that…

I

FEEL

STRONG!

I should probably back up and explain something here.

I love to bake. I love batter. I love dough. I love cookies, cakes, muffins…you name it.

Anything that goes in and out of an oven is a friend of mine.

Or an enemy as the case may be.

Usually, my MO is that I bake when I am in the mood to overindulge and really binge. Sometimes I do it when I am at a low…but lots of times I do it when I am at a high. And I “test” myself. And always fail. I don’t go into it thinking or saying that I am going to splurge. But somewhere deep in the back of my mind, I know it. And it happens everytime.

And once I start, I can’t stop…I’m like that with just about everything…as evidenced:

here.

But this time feels different.

I actually think I am making these banana bread muffins because they will be a semi-healthy snack to have.

I chose the healthiest ingredients.

I counted out the calories for each carefully measured component.

I intend to have one with a mug of hot cocoa today (its cold and rainy here again – ugh) and wrap and freeze the rest.

I sometimes write this blog hoping that my story will inspire others and I’ll get millions of readers who want to hear what I have to say.

Other times, it is just for me. An outlet. A way for me to write my thoughts about where I am in my own journey. And a place for me to remind myself that I just may be stronger than I think I am.

Today is one of those days.

 

The timer just went off…here we go.

Bring it on banana bread.

 

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