Getting Back On Track! 140!

Yes! I think I’m getting back on track. I weighed in this morning at 140! Yay! I still have a little tiny bit more to go, but I’m happy. I feel “lighter” physically and emotionally!

I was a little discouraged, but determined yesterday! After I made my public confession both on MyFitnessPal and here on the blog, I felt relieved!

This has been such a learning experience, and it’s still a long journey!

Weight loss was only the first part of the voyage, maintenance is going to be a life long struggle.

I will always be a compulsive eater. It will never go away. There will be many relapses and that’s okay. It’s normal. I just have to be aware of when it’s happening so I can bring myself back! I can’t be embarrassed or ashamed of myself.

But I’m back on track now. My calories are still set lower at 1650, and we’ll see what happens during the next couple of days/weeks.

Besides learning more about my compulsiveness, I also learned that more than ever, I still need to keep counting calories, and remain active in some sort of weight loss community. I am so grateful that I have such an easy way to do that, with MyFitnessPal – besides their web site, the iPhone app is a God-send. I know emphatically that I would not be as successful if I didn’t have the community and the tools from this site.

Thank you myfitnesspal and to all my friends there!

Confessions of a Compulsive Eater – 141.8

Okay, confession time.

This summer was brutal. While on our vacations, I ate a lot lot lot of sugary foods, & it seems like it made my “compulsive” eating issues come alive a little bit. It was getting harder and harder to say “no” to foods that I shouldn’t be eating.

This weekend, I didn’t think twice about grabbing a couple of processed store-bought cookies & a small bag of buttered/salted popcorn that was offered at a local hardware store’s grand re-opening. ugh.

I never had trouble refusing gross processed cookies in the past, so I know there’s a problem.

I mean, I always felt that if I was going to treat myself, it would have to be something special and really delicious. Not some store bought oreos, chips ahoy, or fig newtons! sigh.

Bottom line, I have been slowly gaining back a little weight. Not a lot, but I’m up to 141.8! I think the gain is a combination of my eating habits and my messed up peri-menopausal system, but either way, I’ve got to do better with my food choices.

I’ve officially adjusted my profile weight up to 141.8 at MyFitnessPal.

I adjusted my daily calories from 1800 to 1650, and posted my confession on my MyFitnessPal newsfeed! What a marvelous wonderful group of supportive friends I have on MFP.

Yes yes yes, I know I can do it!

  • I don’t want to ignore this problem, that’s how I ended up at 200 pounds in the first place!
  • I’m trying to be accountable
  • I’m admitting that I’m doing something wrong and I want to change!

I should add that 140 is actually a “normal” weight for someone at my height of 5’8″ but I feel “normal” at around 138ish.

Dastardly Donut

Ugh, the dastardly donut got me today at lunch. I was visiting DH and we ate lunch together in his work lunchroom, and there was a box of Dunkin Donuts that another co-worker brought in that morning. Of course, DH had to open it, and there were just a few left, all jelly filled. I couldn’t resist. Darn! I think this is the first day, in a long time, that I really felt guilty about something I ate!

Darn Dastardly Donut!

And then when I looked up the calories in one of those suckas, yikes! 290 calories! That’s criminal! I won’t be doing that again, so I suppose it’s a good thing then. Anytime you learn a lesson, it’s good. And yes, I learned!

#1, look up foods like donuts BEFORE you eat them, that way you can judge if the cost of calories is worth the “cheat treat”

#2, It was a good donut, but really not worth 300 calories!

Pretzels

This is why I don’t buy pretzels and other non nutritious snacks. I can’t stop eating them!

We’ve been on vacation this week, and we stopped for a snack after ATVing and against my better judgement, I was coerced into buying a 1 lb bag of pretzel sticks.

Let me tell you these things are really difficult to stop eating once you start! Most people think pretzels are a healthy snack, but truthfully they offer no nutritional value so they do not satisfy!

And because they don’t fill you up, you keep eating and eating and eating! They are addictive! I don’t like feeling out of control, and pretzel sticks make me eat uncontrollably!

143.6 Eeek Gained!

Weighed in this morning, and it’s not good.

I am not sure what happened, but I’m not going to let it discourage me. Weight fluctuation are a part of healthy weight maintenance. I think my body is going through some changes, and I have to stay calm, not panic and just figure out what’s going on.

This just proves that faithful logging your food diary is important during weight loss AND weight maintenance. I know I was getting sloppy. I logged every bite, but I was going over my calories a lot in the past few weeks and this could be the aftereffect.

143.6 is not the end of the world. I can and WILL get back down to 140 and lower!

It might even be a temporary water weight gain, which I’ve had in the past so many times. I ate steel cut oats yesterday morning, and while I adore them, they seem to have a negative effect on me. I felt bloated all afternoon. I’m bummed because I just love steel cut oats! I don’t know if it’s a definite allergy or intolerance, or it could be that I need to get used to them. I’m having them again this morning, so we’ll see.

In any case, I’m okay…staying accountable! I’ll weigh in tomorrow and see if there’s a change.

Making Some Spring Adjustments – Diet, Fitness, Food, Mental Outlook

I’m making this post public for complete personal accountability. It’s the only way I’m going to be able to get through this rough patch and stick to my healthy lifestyle plan! I can’t allow this to discourage me or set me back into old habits!

So, I’ve lowered my calories by 30 over at MyFitnessPal. I’m going by what they suggested for my calories, but I manually adjust some nutrients:

Calories: 1770
Carbs: 50% 221g
Protein: 20% 89g
Fat: 30% 59g
Sat Fat: 15g
Poly: 20g
Monounsat: 24g
Cholesterol: 300mg
Sodium: 2500mg
Potassium: 3500mg
Fiber: 30g
Sugar: 30g

No, 30 calories isn’t a big daily change, but it’ll total 210 calories per week, and that might help.

I’m not not sure that I’m gaining weight, but I’ve been feeling *heavier*, and I’ve noticed my body shape is changing. My upper body is fine, in fact, I’m very happy with my arms! I feel like my lower body is getting a bit flabby. I noticed my ankles this morning, and they seemed cankle-ish. Ugh. Please no! No more cankles! And my stomach area isn’t as flat as it was a couple of months ago.

I’ve been neglecting exercise, and I know that is a big part of my problem! I was sticking to my 2 days of fitness per week until last week. sigh. Only one day last week. Not good!

I haven’t really weighed myself in the last couple of days, I think I’m avoiding it. Hopefully I’m still about 140ish, but I think I feel better when I’m down to 138-139 pounds.

transitional spring flowers

I am also in another food “transition” period. I went through last October as well, after blueberries were long gone, and before California navel oranges were in season. Now that it’s spring, the Washington organic apples are becoming a bit soft, they’re not as crisp, so I haven’t been buying as many. and my beloved oranges are going to be out of season very soon.

It’ll be awhile until local seasonal summer fruit is available, like peaches, nectarines, blueberries, raspberries, cantaloupe, watermelon.

I always have a harder time with satiety in between seasons. I’m bored with food and I’m having a difficult time with it. I’ve been noticing that I’m eating, even though I’m not necessarily hungry. Like right this minute, I have a few calories left, but I’m necessarily hungry, but my body doesn’t feel satisfied. I want to eat more, but I really don’t NEED to eat more. Compulsive compulsive compulsive! It probably doesn’t help that I’m constantly reading cookbooks and watching cooking shows on TV!

I suppose it’s also not helping that I’m trying to detox off dairy and eggs for at least 2 weeks, maybe a month.

So, I am glad spring is here though, and it should be easier psychologically with the warmer weather. I’ll want to walk or bike outside more! I know I’ll be back on track soon. I just need to get beyond this little bump in the road! But in the meantime, I think I’ll get a teenie tiny snack. I wish I could have a chunk o’ cheese, but I’ll just get an orange.

:) Life is good!

See You Next Year

It’s New Year’s Eve! We’re going to splurge. Our last dinner of 2010 is going to be Italian, I’m thinking I’ll pick up take out from the Macaroni Grill. Something extravagant and yummy!

So, what about New Year resolutions?

I don’t recommend general “weight loss” resolutions. Why? Because weight loss starting in the winter, right after the holidays, is difficult. The weather is colder, so it’s difficult to become active and start exercising. Metabolism is down, way down, and depression is up due to the lack of sun. It’s difficult and expensive to find fresh seasonal produce, thus making it harder to eat healthier.

Winter, in my opinion, is not the optimal time to start a whole ‘gung ho’ weight loss commitment!

“I want to lose weight, I want to eat healthier, I want to exercise more” are all too broad and general, and sadly bound for failure.

Weight loss requires a lifestyle change. And that requires baby steps, gradually making small changes, leading to larger changes.

How about one of these baby steps instead:

I am going to stop buying processed food (Lean Cuisine, Campbell’s Soup etc) for lunch.
I will start eating 100% whole grain/wheat bread
I will limit my sodium intake to under 2500mg per day
I am going to start drinking 8 glasses of water every day.
I will eat one meatless dinner per week
I will exercise at least one time per week
I am going to start eating homemade meals at least 3 times per week
I am going to sign up for a local CSA share.
I will eat an apple or other fruit once a day.
I am going to start taking a multi-vitamin every day.

Baby steps lead to real lifestyle changes!

So, what are MY New Year Resolutions?

  1. I would like to read and clean up my email inbox. That would be a nice challenge, for the new year. I also need to unsubscribe from a lot of newsletters and lists that I don’t ever read. They are just clogging up my life and my inbox.
  2. I also would like to commit to be nicer to others. I can be so hot headed sometimes, and I speak before I think. I would like to make up for some mistakes in the past. KARMA baby!!!!

Final Thoughts

My health is good. I feel terrific! I don’t remember feeling this good EVER. My energy is up and so is my metabolism! The 60 pounds that I’ve lost has lead me to a wonderful new appreciation of myself, and I’m looking forward to 2011 as being another healthy happy year.

I wish everyone reading this a Happy Healthy New Year. I hope my words haven’t discouraged anyone from starting on their weight loss journey! I wish only success to those that are yearning for a healthier lifestyle!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

One Day Cooking For Meals All Week

My days are getting longer at work, and then with afternoon errands, it’s been so stressful worrying about finding time for healthy weekday cooking. So, I took a tip from Rachael Ray’s new show, Week in a Day and decided that I would try cooking a bunch recipes on the weekend, making it easier to put together meals during busier days during the week. Plus, I need to fill our new chest freezer with some goodies!

So, today I set the oven on 300° and started cooking:

St Louis Style Pork Ribs

I rubbed some Arizona Dreaming seasoning from Penzey’s Spices on a rack of St Louis style pork ribs and slow cooked them on a roasting pan with rack. Thankfully, I applied a layer of aluminum foil on the bottom of the pan so clean up was a breeze!

They cooked for about 4 hours (300°), and then I raised the oven temp to about 375° to crisp them for a few minutes. Delicious and so easy.

Chuck Beef Roast

Next, I sliced all the outer fat off of a small one pound chuck beef roast (looked like a steak) and cut it into two pieces. In one of my smaller 2 quart cast iron covered pots, I browned each piece separately, then deglazed the bottom of the pan with a little bit of Merlot wine. I added both pieces of beef back into the pot, and covered with large chunks of onion, then poured some additional wine over the top. I let it slow cook (300°) for about 4 hours. I didn’t peek inside the pot, I just kept it covered and left it alone.

We ended up having it for our dinner tonight, and it was scrumptious. Tender and flavorful. Chuck rocks I tell you!!! It’s one of the best cuts of beef, it’s cheap and the flavor is outstanding! And so simple! I didn’t even have to add one smidgen of salt, pepper, spice or herb to the pot, and it develops into lusciousness. Just take the time to brown the meat first, deglaze, then add wine!

Chicken Drumsticks

On the stove, I browned 8 chicken drumsticks (two batches of 4 drums each) with some olive oil in my 4 quart cast iron pot. The chicken was reserved on a plate, while I started sauteing chopped onion, carrot, and some leftover purple cabbage. I thought it would be a good opportunity to try out the new bottle of three acre kitchen Balsamic Marinade I just bought from Whole Foods, so I poured a couple of tablespoons in, and deglazed the pan; it bubbled and reduced very quickly. Then I deglazed again with some Merlot wine, then added the chicken back into the pot, and poured more wine.

I placed the covered pot into the oven (300°) and cooked for hmm, I think it was about 2 hours or so. The chicken was falling off the bone, and I tasted a couple of tiny bits, and it was delicious. I completely cooled the chicken, vegetables, and sauce in a separate bowl, and then transferred into a large freezer bag to freeze for a later date.

Ground Beef and Leek Chili

On the stovetop, I browned a 1/3 pound of grass fed beef in my other 2 quart cast iron pot (I love my 2 quart pots, and I highly recommend this size for smaller 2-3 person families), then added in a couple of chopped leeks. Cooked down for a few minutes, then added poblano peppers (frozen from summer veggies), cranberry beans (also frozen from summer), fresh parsley, a carton of Pomi strained tomatoes and lots of spices and herbs.

That was also put into the oven along side the 4 qt pot with drumsticks, 2 quart pot with beef. The roaster with the ribs was on the bottom oven rack. It all just fit! Phew!

It cooked for about 1.5 hours or so, and then I cooled the chili completely; I transferred most of it into a quart sized freezer bag to freeze for a later date. I kept a portion in the fridge, enough for tomorrow’s lunch for either my husband or myself.

Transitional Whole Wheat Bread

I started my soaker and biga for a loaf of bread yesterday, following the transitional wheat bread recipe from Peter Reinhart. I removed the biga from the fridge this morning, and once all the pots were in the oven, it was perfect timing to start creating the final dough.

By the time the chili and chicken drumsticks were done baking, my dough had risen, was proofed and was ready to be baked, so I temporarily increased the oven temp to 350° and the loaf went into the oven.

40 minutes later, it was baked and I lowered the temp back down to 300° for the beef and pork ribs to finish.

Salad Greens

I was thrilled to find some local organic red and green leaf lettuce at Whole Foods at a bargain price of only 1.29/lb. I picked up 3 heads! The total cost was about $2.50, which equaled to one small head of green leaf from California.

I washed, spun dried, and bagged all of it, so now I have enough lettuce for a few dinner and lunch salads for the week.

Accomplishment

Once everything was done cooking, I poured a cup of jasmine brown rice with 2 cups of water into one of the 2 qt cast iron pots, and in an hour or so, we were ready to eat tonight’s meal.

I think it’ll get even easier next time. I will be able to coordinate a little better, multi-tasking a bit more. But I feel so accomplished knowing that a big portion of the cooking for this week is done!

There is a portion of beef left over along with 2 servings of brown rice, so I have a plan to either make tomato beef sauce (with rice or pasta) or possibly some beef stew with rice, leeks and kale. I think I’ll probably go for the soup.

As for the rest of the week, we have pork ribs, chicken (enough for at least two meals), and chili. I have some beets in the fridge, and they will roast nicely with potatoes and/or a butternut squash. I think we’ll be good to go!

Goals…Yes, I Need More Goals!

I read a inspiring topic over on myfitnesspal this morning

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/topics/show/130945-women-ages-50-for-november

Goals are great, but sometimes we reach too high, and our targets fall short. I don’t want to set my expectations too high that failure will be imminent. But I do realize now that I need to set some goals for myself to keep going forward!

November Goals

  1. Keep logging my calories
  2. Continue to eat as clean as possible with occasional cheat breaks (once or twice a week)
  3. Making time to exercise at least TWICE a week – it’s been very difficult for me to get motivated to work out, so hopefully setting a low goal for exercise will help me keep up.
  4. Counting my blessings more often
  5. Being nicer to people and more respectful of others’ feelings

Life is good!!!

country road