My Summer Adventure

Last week I announced over at the Edmonton Tourist that I am running the Race to Kinvara. You can read about it here.

Screen Shot 2015-06-22 at 11.01.33 PM

It has given me the proper motivation to get my body moving more aggressively than I was before. I just haven’t felt all that keen on running even though I have the Dumbo Double Dare scheduled for September in Disneyland. I just don’t get all that exceeded about Disney Races. For someone who loves Disney and running as much as I do, you’d think it would be a match made in heaven.

Its not.

I get excited about going, I get excited about see my pals, I get excited about the expo. But the race? Meh.

I don’t run fast enough to make it fun. I think that is the large part of it. I don’t have time to stop and meet characters or goof around with pals. I need to go and I cannot slowdown or I get swept.

And I do not need a lecture on increasing my pace. I have knocked 2 minutes per kilometre off since I began running… so just keep those comments to yourself thanks. I am doing the best I can.

Races that are much more forgiving, let me enjoy them for what they are. My favourite race is the Calgary Marathon Weekend. LOVE the atmosphere, the crowd support, the entertainment on the course and you know what? The course itself is pretty. I love the Bow river, I love seeing the Rockies in the distance and I love that it is mostly flat. Not Disney flat. That is FLAT, but Calgary is Prairie/Foothills flat. The perfect flat because running downhill is awesome fun for me.

I know, I know…You can walk a disney race and still finish. Well, maybe YOU can, but not everyone can. I have had 2 sucktastic Disney experiences in a row. I am determined to make my next experience a better one. I loved my first race – the Minnie 10km.

IMG_6039

Crossing the finish line and having Rudy Novotny say hey to me was awesome. This next race has my mental game shaken. Friends have already asked if I am running with them…HELL NO. Go have fun. Enjoy your race. I have to work my ass off to finish and I’d rather do it my own way. Stay focused. Stay Happy and STAY ALONE.

We talked about this before. To me there is nothing I love more than running alone, by myself as in SOLO. It is awesome to hang out before and after with friends but during…get lost. My pal said to me the other day, you don’t know if you like running with people because you have never done it.

Not true.

I have and do run with people for Run Club. I ran today with these awesome people!

IMG_9518

It’s sometimes my job to be a pace leader for the Learn to Run Group. I like it because I set the rules and I think because I am the leader its just different. I like it better when I set the pace and then need to slow down for others. I do not like having to make people slow down for me. I just don’t. I don’t want to talk when I run. I will listen, but don’t expect an answer. A) I am deaf in my left ear and can’t hear you. B) I daydream when I run so talking makes me have to pay attention. BOOOOO that just makes running hard.

When I daydream – or get in the zone – I am aware of cars and the vibration on my wrist for intervals. Thats it. I think about  all kinds of things that I don’t want to share because its about Me sorting out MY thoughts. I love being alone with my thoughts. I don’t get to do that very often. So when I get to…wow…pure bliss.

Anyways…. Ireland.

I have felt then need to up my game because I am on a TEAM. I don’t want to let my team down. Sure it isn’t supposed to be serious. Sure its supposed to be for fun. I still feel the need to be the best I can be. That means I need to run hills, practice pacing, try out clothing and get a feel for what will work.

The best part about the Race to Kinvara is….I get to run alone without my team.

It is a relay. Everyone will be on the bus when I run. I will have been left in the dust by the other teams, so that means I will have the road to Kinvara to myself. I am pretty sure I will weep with joy. Me and my shoes running along the road alone. Honestly? Nothing sounds like a better vacation than that. Apparently I will have a Porter who will drive a scooter to keep an eye on me, hand me water when I need it and basically take care of my needs. Thats as close to being a process as I will ever be and that really appeals to me.

I will do my leg of the run and someone will feel the need to make up for my slow time. Do I care? I did a week ago. I don’t now. This is going to be MY Irish experience. How they choose to experience theirs is up to them.

I did add an element to my training that I had not done before.

I have started wearing my HRM on my training runs. I want to make sure I am running at my best. This is what I learned: I go too fast on my LSD days, but I run within my target for maximum on speed work days. So when I tell someone I am trying my best…I really am.

I have also added my footpod. It gives me my cadence (steps per minute) I am not sure what to do with that information yet. I will keep collecting it and I hope to see it increase by the end of summer.

IMG_9498

I have also started back with My Fitness Pal because I am worried I will gain back what I have lost. I am NEVER GOING DOWN THAT ROAD AGAIN! My jeans are a touch too tight…so its time to become aware again. So far? I have noticed that I was doing okay! I just indulged into many libatious moments over my vacation. But, I always said that I am not on a diet, I am changing my life, but with that, I need to live. Drinks with  friends is part of that. However, now that training has begun in earnest for my Summer Adventure, the beverages need to stop too – the occasional cool one at a BBQ will be fine because I will adjust my intake to accommodate.

So thats it in a nut shell! Aside from my awesome runner’s tan… I am just the same.

IMG_9497

Why am I always hungry?

It’s been a while since I thought about how my nutrition is impacting my weight loss. I have been on this diet lifestyle change for about 2.5 years. With about 6 months taken off for bad behavior. I suppose that is what makes me normal. Eating off plan and indulging in yumolicious things. However, I have had an epiphany of late.

This past week, I have been hungry. The kind of hungry where if a cow would walk by me right this minute, chance of it walking away without a large bite taken out of it would be slim to none. I don’t get these hungry episodes very often, but when I do look out if you are holding a sandwich, I might take your hand off.

I haven’t done anything particularly different. I have switched up my running days. Surprising my body and metabolism into a new routine. I added cycling into the mix and although I am not going any great distances, my legs and ass hurt from the newness of this sport. (secretly I am thinking about trying this out Diva Duathlon next fall. My dream of a Tri has fallen by the wayside until I can get my dizzy under control from that schwannoma that has taken up residence in the head. The good news is on land, I am golden! In the pool – not so much. The distances for the Diva are 3 km RUN – 12 km BIKE – 2 km RUN. So doable I find it exciting! Can you picture it? Me and Danger Bike working together to conquer this course? I will ride all winter with this in mind. The running 3k – then 2k should be fine.

Getting back to the HUNGRY. This past week I have noticed I have made choices based on what will fill my tummy and provide good energy. I have turned my back on the vegetarian me for a bit and have indulged in MEAT. Shocking, no – I am not a hard and fast vegetarian, I mostly am because I don’t care for meat, the flavor, the prepping of it, the look or smell, be lately – I JUST WANT TO EAT IT!. So I do. I have learned the hard way that listening to your bodies cravings is a way to keep you healthy – not the sugar cravings…that is different. But if your body wants and apple…eat an apple. If your body wants water, DRINK WATER. Simple formula but it takes time to be able to listen to what your body wants and  needs. My focus is not skinny, a number or anything related to the diet aspect. My focus is health, and awareness. I want to be aware of my nutritional needs because that is what enables me to run farther and be active, with a side benefit of brain power. Given that I have eaten non stop for several weeks. Beef/Chicken/Fish/Beans/Legumes/Eggs and all the organic veg in my fridge, one would think I am getting bigger rather than smaller.

HA! Tricked YOU!

I put on a long sleeve shirt that I purchased when I began losing weight. It is a stretchy, comfy shirt that sat snugly on my hips – well – just at my hips. It was still quite snug last year around this time. I put it on today and it fell below my butt. I have to make sure I am wearing the right undergarments because the cleavage factor is more prominent, meaning that what use to be a modest amount of chest showing, I could easily get arrested now. I am not ready to buy new clothes. I have a limited of suitable items for business meetings and a closet full of race shirts I can wear around the house. I am going through a rapid weight-loss phase right now, when I taper off – then I will hit the stores again.

I look at myself and can’t see the difference. My family can’t either, although Chatterbox will hug measure me and is able to hug up to her elbows where before she couldn’t reach around me. That is cool.

I have changed running tech shirt sizes. I have gone from finally fitting into a 2XL to being very comfy in a L. I have stopped recording my food intake. I want to try to listen and respond better. I think I am deceiving that.

In this photo, to me I look the same. Except my shoulders and chest are much smaller. My hips are smaller too. It seems that the hips and butt will be the last place the weight leaves me. Size difference? 26 in 2011/16 in 2013. That is progress and my hair is better too. Nutrition makes a difference with all facets of the body. my nails are great, hairs is healthier and my skin is clearer. All wins in my book.

mecomp

Moral of the story? Make it a habit. Habits are hard to break.

Withdrawals are brutal

The moment I plan to get back on track and use the food diary to record my food intake, guess what happens? The site is DOWN for maintenance. Seriously?

I could take this as a sign to skip it, but…

I won’t. I will wait it out.

Meanwhile, I will plan a yummy organic sandwich for lunch, spinach, tomatoes, cucumber, havarti, sunflower sprouts, salt and pepper on whole grain bread with a BC peach on the side.

I have been struggling with food lately because I need to remove the sugar ONCE AGAIN from my diet. I splurged on cake over the wedding weeks and over indulged in wine. The withdrawal I experience from sugar overload is nasty. So why do I keep doing this to myself? Perhaps it is because I refuse to be on a diet and wish to not complicate my life during big events. That is not to say that I pigged out – because I did not. I maintained my weight graciously, I just chose food that has an addictive quality for me.

WxVVlf

I think I have the emotional eating under control. I was faced with some unsettling news yesterday and handled it beautifully. That is a win for me. I need to celebrate that success! But how? Hmmm

I will go to my favourite 10k spot today and run with my new Ryders. I lost my old ones about a month ago and mom gave me money for my birthday to buy new ones. Oakleys would be a waste of money because I lose stuff ALL THE TIME. So Ryders are a great quality compromise. AND I look fabulous in them. AND it’s sunny out.
defcon_r562-001

There you have it, I have become that girl who rewards herself with a long run.

Whodathunk?

Happy Running!

The training wheels came off and now I am ready to proceed with the rest of the journey

549273_349576008488429_102793663_nRemember way back to January 2010 when I started this Just Me and Mo Project? I was pretty worried about failing and not being able to find the MO to finish off what I started. My goal was simple. Make the outside me match the inside me. I took several steps to get there, I made small changes that became great habits and I began a fitness journey that has rocked my world and turned me into a medal whore. I am 90lbs lighter than I was that day in January.

I had been going to the Weight Wise Clinic that was created to give people the tools they need to change their lifestyle and lead a healthier life. It can be done with or without bariatric surgery. I decided not to choose surgery and continue down the path I am on. I have to say I have been successful but I also have to say it hasn’t been easy.

Today my Health Nurse Coordinator transitioned me out of the program. She said I have the tools, I am applying what I have learned and my weight keeps coming down. In fact, I am 2 dress sizes down from the last time I saw her. I am feeling empowered.

After I went to visit the Nurse, I was sent to dietary to discuss my plan.

My big question was how do I figure out when I need to drop my calorie intake and how to I proceed with maintenance?

Well obviously the maintenance will be in about 2 years time, but she won’t be in my life so I needed that formula. You know something? There IS a mathematical formula! Who knew this weight loss thing was all math?

Um… me. I knew that I need to burn more calories than I ingest. The simple formula of eat less and move more, but did you know that your body needs a basic amount just to have organ function? I bet you don’t think about that when you stand on the scale and wish you were the same size as you were in high school.

Oh come on, are you really thinking you body will let you get back to the weight when you were 17? It isn’t going to happen in a healthy manner, I can guarantee that!

Here is the formula:

10 x wt (kg) + 6.25 x Ht (cm) – 5 x Age (yrs) + 5 = BMR (male)
10 x wt (kg) + 6.25 x Ht (cm) – 5 x Age (yrs) -161 = BMR (female)

You need to use the metric system for this formula or it won’t work. The good news is metric makes math easy. So figuring that out, I need to consume 1550 calories a day to lose about 1-2lbs a week. Any more than that and I am putting myself at risk for taking off too much and putting right back on again. No thanks, 2 years of hard work and I am wanting to go back to where I was. My dietician told me not to drop below 1200 calories per day. If I always food journal then I will have a pretty good idea when I will be finished losing weight. You see, I don’t get to pick a number out of the air. I was told I have about 90 more lbs to lose. That will not put me in the 17 year old weight bracket I was in high school. In fact that will leave me about 50lbs heavier than I was back then. BUT!

But?

YES BUT! I am fitter now than I was then. I am healthier now than I was then and I can easily see myself being a size 10 or smaller when I reach that goal. That is based on my current size and height. I don’t know about you, but I am stoked about being a size 10.

We also talked about panel surgery or Panniculectomy Surgery (Abdominoplasty). There is a good chance I will be covered under Alberta Health Care for this procedure. It is the removal of my belly skin – not fat. I am getting rid of the fat but the skin is loose and droopy – how attractive… It is more common in mothers due to the pregnancy thing but I was obese and pregnant so it is higher for me. This is one of those woulda shoulda coulda moments for me. At any rate, I will lose all the weight I can and then talk to my doctor about the excess skin if necessary.

So, where does that leave me? I no longer have medical support services.

Not true, I have my amazing Doctor. If I find I need dietician support, I can access that through the Primary Health Services (free to patients in the Edmonton Area whose doctor is connected to the PCN) Which mine is and its an AMAZING service!

Meanwhile I have to stay committed to fitness. I have mapped out my fitness goals way off into the future so I am always working on something. I learned my lesson after my first half marathon and got the Marathon Blues. It was a big set back, so this time I am prepared.

It’s a big day in my Me and Mo Journey. I am now ready to remove the training wheels and head out on my own.

Yay me!

You want me to eat more WHAT?

English: vegetables

English: vegetables (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Let’s talk about food choices.

In consultation with my dietician (her name is Lisa and she is hilarious – I’m girl crushing a bit. She is my new one because my old dietician just wasn’t helpful) on a monthly basis, I was was required to add more vegetables into my daily intake.

Yuck.

Let’s clarify a few things. I am mostly vegetarian. I do not enjoy meat. I like fish, the odd burger and a really good steak every now and then. My daughter is a vegetarian so cooking a single meal that meets her nutritional requirements makes life simple. The boy likes MEAT. So I throw a steak or a chicken breast on the grill and serve a veggie side and he is set. SO why do I dislike Vegetables? I don’t really, I just HATE food prep.

My go to veg is bagged salad. It comes in a bag, I slice open the bag and I eat the veg from the bag. Boring but is a lazy girls easy salad.

My challenge was to fit 4 cups of vegetables into my daily diet and salad could only be one up of that total. FINE LISA! Challenge accepted!

My favorite food is rice – white arborio rice. Then least nutritional grain out there. I thought about why I like it. It is neutral. It is gluteny. It absorbs sauces very well and is filling.

My challenge? Limit less nutritional grains (better yet – Eliminate) from my intake. Make it an occasional food. Substitute vegetables.

This meant I needed to think differently about what I eat and how I eat. I grew up with meat, potatoes/rice/pasta and a veg sitting on my plate. Meat and veg were the small portions and the starch was the bigger portion. Obviously… I needed to reverse that habit.

Solution? Pinterest.

My go-to food inspiration.

I discovered cauliflower.

I ate it before, never loved it. Gets cold very fast after it is cooked. Raw is better. It is a good ovarian cancer fighter and has other benefits, most of all it is real food – not processed. I am so over processed food. I like real food – stuff that has one ingredient on the label… Cauliflower.

Pinterest suggested I throw a head of cauliflower into the food processor and chop it up to the consistency of rice.

So I did that.

Then it said to add it to my stir-fry at the last minute (it is so small you can just scare it with heat)

So I did that.

Then add what ever sauce you like.

Eat it.

Did I mention I am lazy when it comes to vegetable prep? I shop in the frozen section sometimes for veg. My local has bags of pre-cut mixed stir-fry suitable veg. The ingredients are broccoli, bell pepper, onion, cauliflower, water chestnuts, baby corn, green beans, edamame beans, carrots, and mushrooms – no other ingredients = good. They also have the same stuff in the fresh section. Pre-cut = good.

I use a bag of frozen veg, I add a can of what ever beans are in the cupboard – I like black beans or white beans – added protein  the shredded cauliflower and sauce. I like yellow curry or Thai peanut. 2 cups of this meal ends up being about 320 calories. I am FULL afterwards and satisfied for a very long time. This satisfies Lisa, no salad and a variety of other vegetables. This satisfies me, no meat yet lots of protein. The bulk of the calories come from the sauce, but I gave up rice for sauce so it is a fair trade in my books.

The added benefit is I like the way I feel. All those vegetables make me feel energized.

I have salad everyday for lunch and challenge myself to find alternatives for dinner that don’t include boiled veg on the side. Here is a list of veg I have added to my meals on a regular basis. I am stoked about the variety of vitamins I have included!

  1. Kale chips – I make lots and keep in a container for crunch/salty snacking
  2. Eggplant – baked in a tomato ragu – FAB (eggplant is my pasta substitute)
  3. Spaghetti squash mac and cheese – sometimes I want CHEESE, melty gooey cheesey goodness! Spaghetti squash is my macaroni substitute because it is the cheese I love, not necessarily the pasta.
  4. Vegetarian Chili  – I throw left- over veg from the week (not lettuce  into the food processor and add it to my chili. I uses 3 different cans of beans (red and white kidney beans and black beans) and tinned tomatoes. So delicious!

Tell me how YOU add more vegetables into your life. I really need to know, Lisa can be brutal.

How am I doing it? I’ll tell you.

549273_349576008488429_102793663_nI went out last night and ate fish and chips at the local chip shop. Do I feel guilty? No, it’s just food I rarely indulge in. There was a special occasion that called for Pub food. It was my mom’s birthday and to celebrate her adopted British heritage, we went to Brits and then off to the Diana Exhibit at West Edmonton Mall. We saw the Princess’ wedding dress and ball gowns, Sir Elton John’s chicken scratch and Sir George Martin’s musical score. It was kind of cool. All the women of my family went, 4 generations. I am the largest.

That sucks.

I have made serious progress and meet weekly with an emotional eating group. That helps a lot, but I still get asked on a regular basis “what are you doing to lose the weight?”

I have bad news for you. There is no secret. It is simple math. Burn more calories than you intake, in other words: Eat less Move more. There you have it, simple math.

In two years I have lost the equivalent of my daughter = 80lbs. I still need to lose the equivalent of my son. But I don’t think about it much any more. Small changes that I made two years ago have become habit for the most part. Cookies are still my weakness, and I don’t love vegetables (because I am a lazy cook and I hate prep) but I will share with you small changes that I have made to help me be successful.

  1. Record every thing you eat! Don’t lie about it either. I downloaded MyFitnessPal onto my iPhone  I have it on my iPad and on my laptop. Every time something goes into my mouth I record it. This does a couple of things, A) it makes me mindful of eating – grabbing a handful of something out of the pantry while I cook dinner better be pea pods rather than tortilla chips Calorie difference is 40 verses 290. B) It gives me a baseline. When I lose weight in one week and not in another, I can look back and see what I did differently. C) MyFitnessPal does all the math for me, it will scan barcodes for nutritional information AND it lets me record and save favorite meals. I love my breakfast to be the SAME 6 days a week. Greek yogurt, All-bran buds and a banana. Same same same. It is easy and I don’t think about it. Simple. Think about intake this way: A meal has 3-4 different food groups and should be between 300-500 calories. A snack has 1-2 different food groups and should be between 100-150 calories. Add me as a friend on MyFitnessPal, send me a message with your email and we can connect. The more support the better. 
  2. Don’t drink your calories! Every morning before I do anything I drink a mug of water. That is 2 cups of water towards my daily goal of 8. I eat breakfast and I have a cup of coffee. I gave up milk/cream/sugar in my coffee because that is another 120 calories I can eat. Food makes you full and satisfied, beverages are empty calories. I only drink water, coffee, tea and on occasion I drink wine or beer. Molson has a decent tasting beer called Molson 67. 67 calories of one bottle. It even tastes like Canadian beer – I can’t drink American beer because it is watery. I like strong flavors. Apothic Red wine 122 calories. For me it is an indulgence that I enjoy. It isn’t every week, I only drink occasionaly,but I always record it.
  3. Don’t call it a diet! I have changed my lifestyle, I don’t diet. That means this food change is forever and I have to live with it. There is no point in depriving yourself, that leads to bingeing. Having chocolate, sweets, crunching/salty food is just that. FOOD. It isn’t evil, it isn’t forbidden, it is  special. Special means once in a while or occasionally  Just like birthdays. Birthdays are not daily, when you have something special enjoy it. Take it slow. Put the first bite into your mouth and ask yourself about it. Does it taste good? No? Then stop eating it. Save your calories for food that is worth while. Does it taste good? Yes? Then ask yourself after every bite if you need more or are you done. You will likely not need to eat all of it. I have learned that a taste is very satisfying. I swear.
  4. Stop ingesting Aspartame! This was the most difficult thing I have ever done. It is addicting. It makes you crave sweets and studies show you WILL gain weight because you trick your brain into thinking you are eating sugar. The more sugar you eat, the more you want. Since kicking the Diet Coke habit, I rarely want sweets. I went to the Hong Kong bakery last night and didn’t buy myself a thing. I didn’t deprive myself I just didn’t feel like anything. Part of that is I no longer crave sweets. That took a good month to kick that habit. The other part was I was satisfied after eating my dinner and I didn’t feel like I need more food. That leads me to the last tip…
  5. Think about where you are hungry! That sounds redonkulus but its true. If you are hungry, truly hungry, your tummy will say so, you can feel weak or cranky and possibly light headed. This means you need fuel. So treat your body to protein, drink water have fruits and veg. Stick to the food groups. Stop thinking that food is a treat. It is not a treat, Food is Fuel. Treats are new shoes or shiny things, books and a nap. Food is Fuel. If you are hungry in your mouth, you need oral stimulation. Chew gum, drink water, have spicy tea. If you are hungry in your heart (Emotional eaters I am looking at you)  feel your emotion. Let it out. It is okay to feel stuff. Cry, scream laugh – I don’t care but don’t drug it with food. emotions are for feeling not suppressing. It is like any other addiction. Be conscious of your behavior when you intake food.

Remember, you didn’t put this weight on over night. It is going to take months (in my case years 2 and counting) to get it off. I am willing to put in the work. I started moving by swimming, then I walked and now I run. Eat less Move more. Simple math.

So, last night I ate one piece of beer battered fish and a handful of chips (fries) and tartar sauce. I felt sick afterwards. I can’t tell you the last time I ate that much fried food. Total calorie count? Hard to say but a good estimate was 760 calories taking into count the portion size ( I split a meal with my ChatterBox). I had 157 calories left over for the day. I feel sluggish today. I need vegetables in the worst way. But two years ago, this feeling was normal. I now hate it. I love the way I feel when I eat clean. So was last night worth it? Yes and no. It was my mom’s birthday part and that made it worth it. I feel gross today and know I will struggle through my run, water and fresh food will help. Will there be a next time? Perhaps, but it won’t be my suggestion. I will go for a special occasion and maybe next time eat before I go and buy a little something to pick at with the group. Will I feel deprived? No, I will feel empowered.

Choices we make today affect who you are tomorrow.

Estoy Listo Mo

I have a great facebook friend who hails from Buenos Aires, Argentina. He serenaded me on my birthday and tags in in goofy pictures. We share a love of insane and vintage animation. Today he tagged me in a picture of a pup focusing on the ball. It said Estoy Listo. That’s right, Spanish. I have very poor Spanish and I realize by putting an O on the end of English words does not make Spanish folk understand me better (Take note Amazing Race participants!). Estoy Listo translates – or I hope it translates to “I’m Ready”.

I am ready.

Ready for what? Lots of things! I crave change in a big way. I put my money where my mouth is. I want change so I make it happen.

  1. I wanted to run – so I now run
  2. I wanted my degree – so now I am enrolled for my final year
  3. I wanted a new job – I had 8, count them 8! job interviews and 2 of them called me back for multiple interviews just to tease me and get my hopes up. Yet here I am, back at the same old same old…I am making an attempt to move forward and change. Yet I made some changes in the work place already. People heard NO an awful lot from my mouth this week.
  4. I wanted to quit diet coke – and did it.
  5. I want the outside me to match the awesome and fabulous inside me, so I eat less and move more. I have a team of professionals that help me move in that direction.

Speaking of my team, we decided it was time to take the next step. I was refereed to Weight Wise. I will likely undergo surgery if I am a good candidate. Lap-band – or something similar. I have hit a major wall since last fall. I have not met my weight-loss goal and am frustrated about it. They asked for blood work. I had just had a ton of work done and we discovered a few things. I am not a good candidate for this program. I do not have high blood pressure. I do not have diabetes. I do not have high or bad cholesterol. I am healthy AND fit. You can’t tell by looking at me which PISSES ME OFF…stupid metabolism that has been destroyed from years of abuse. Yet one of the reasons I am in is because I suffer from on again off again depression, and I think I was discriminated against for a job due to my weight. If they had done a fitness test, I would have got it. But judgy people look at the outside. You know who you are you judgy people. I am looking at YOU and judging right back – only I am judging your character… far worse on my books to have lack strength of character.

Steve from Central services called me and booked me in for November 7th. The Alberta Government is footing the bill because apparently this will save them money in the long run. Thank you health care system! I feel renewed and not alone. I would like to offer some tips for those of you who have always been thin-ish and don’t workout to maintain a healthy lifestyle. You people don’t understand the struggle with food, yet that is ironic because you completely understand struggle with SOMETHING, you just lack empathy.

Things that are not helpful

  1. Do not tell someone they shouldn’t eat something. That just gets us mad. Guilt doesn’t work. Put your superior nose somewhere else because we just judged you right back for being a douche bag.
  2. offering to share our dessert and then eating most of it is selfish, it is not helping. Ordering no dessert and looking at us with disapproval makes us want to stab you in the eye with a fork.
  3. Hugging us and sneaking in a measure with your hands..not cool
  4. offering a cash incentive to lose weight, makes us feel like you don’t love and care about us. We figure you just want someone to look good next to you. AGAIN  – that makes me judge your character.
  5. Doing these things to a child or teen will set them up to be an emotional eater for LIFE with the side benefits of weight struggle FOREVER. Now how do you feel that you have discovered you are a contributor?

What you can do:

  1. show unconditional love – hard when you are a judgy person. Do the work, learn how and stop kicking puppies.
  2. make a lifestyle change yourself. Quit something hard. Start working out. Eat better – you need to. The inside you also doesn’t match the outside you – check your blood work.
  3. Never say or imply that a goal cannot be met. This happened to my while I was training for the half marathon. I still harbor ill feelings and can’t trust that person. I don’t share my goals nor my success with them. This hurts them more than me. I needed to for protection. So THINK BEFORE YOU SPEAK.

Now what do I need to do before my big appointment? Well… I need to keep doing what I am doing! Run every other day, swim every other day, eat more vegetables and less starch. Get enough sleep. Drink plenty of water. Journal my food – HATE THIS but it is a necessary evil.

Lastly, cut mean and un-supportive people out of my daily life. I wish I didn’t have to because for some reason I really like you in it even though your actions are judgy and mean.

This next journey is for me and Mo, not you. Estoy Listo. Later Mater…

 

I use to eat that? What were we thinking Mo?

I am part of an online all female support group who help each other through everything from planting gardens, getting through divorces to exercising and eating clean.  It has been a fantastic ride and I have made new friends. In fact, if I ever get their way I would definitely want to meet them!

One of the things the group has been doing lately is the Clean Eat challenge. I had been practicing this for the most part for better part of this year. I am not strict enough with myself to follow it to the letter, but I think that is part of my growth this year. I have never once felt like I have been on a diet. I make better choices, eat regularly, and move WAY more than I use to. I eventually became more conscious of healthy food choices and learned what foods work for me when I need more fuel. We all need to remember Food is Fuel not your Friend! That emotional battle is being won my me. I eat when I am hungry and  try to eat before the starvation point which is a danger point for me. I am 65lbs down, 3 clothing sizes, 1 shoe size and 3 bra sizes. WOW is all I have to say about that! I did this by learning how to sit in my emotions and fell them, not numb them. Sounds easier than it was. I cried A LOT! It even got me off antidepressants and life continues to tick along at a rate that is good for me. I feel like me once again – only better. I am fitter, stronger and smarter.

This is not to say I don’t make mistakes with food, because WOW I have made some doosies lately.

My entire focus on this journey was not to deprive myself but learning the balance of when its okay to indulge and when to tell myself NO. Sadly, this lessons often comes after the fact, like last Thursday night for example.

I went to celebrate the end of the school year with my fellow teaching comrades. We went to a Karaoke Biker Bar, drank and ate deep fried pickles in between the singing and solid gold dancer dancing. Oh ya…it was an epic night. So Epic in fact I just finished paying for it. I had consumed so much salt that my lips have finally felt normal for the first time in a week. A WEEK! In the olden days I would be fine and carry on. Now that I am aware of how my body feels, all that salt intake was cruel and unusual punishment. All I wanted was water and lots of it for one week. Then I celebrated Canada Day by attending a BBQ. I had deep fried Chicken and was paying for it in a big way. My lips once again felt like they belonged on one of those fish face models who can’t smile. THEN I ate not just 1 but 3 of Granny’s beloved Crack Squares. No they aren’t made with crack but they are addictive like crack. homemade marshmallows rolled in caramel rolled in rice-crispy treats. DEADLY but oh so freaking awesome.

I hit myself with a double whammy. Salt AND sugar. I have been off sugar for quite some time and clearly the gianormous salt intake is just not good for human consumption. I had a MASSIVE hangover the next day and not a drop of alcohol did I have. Sugar addiction is brutal. I am happy to say I survived!

Here is the kicker, the real test that shows me how far I have come and where I am heading. After swimming for an hour on Monday, I went to Costco to pick up groceries. I was STARVING when I got the the car. I use to rip open a bag of something crunchy and salty to satisfy the dragon that roared within. Not this time, I grabbed grapes. The sweetest grapes to ever be considered fast food. I munched on a handful and I did not feel any shakes – no sugar crashing, I was completely satisfied, no post food cravings and They were grapes! hardly any calories! 110 for the cup I had as opposed to 200+ I would have eaten in something salty and less satisfying. This has be come not only habit for me but natural in the way I know what kind of fuel my body is needing.

If you want more information on Clean Eating go here. I cannot believe how drastic my life is from 1 1/2 years ago. I don’t drink coffee on running days because I just don’t want any. I avoid sugar because it gives me a hangover and that feels gross. I am 1 week off of Diet Coke – my arch nemesis. This has been my hardest challenge but quite honestly with all the salt my body has ingested this week, Diet Coke turns me off. Water has been my craving. So far So good Mo! We can keep this up easily because it is being aware of what you eat and how it feels – not the other way around.

Ready, Set, MO!

A couple of days right after Christmas, I felt READY to re-commit. It isn’t that I was uncommitted or cheating. I was maintaining. Maintenance takes a different frame of mind from weight-loss. I needed to get myself off of sugar overload again. I didn’t super indulge over the holidays, but I DID indulge. I am glad I did. Why you ask? Because if this is my life or new lifestyle, I am not wanting to live without having a sweet now and then. It is about moderation. There did come a point though, where I felt if I did not recommit, then all my hard work over the past year would be for not. I did not want that to happen, I love the new me! I had an appointment with my dietician soon after Christmas and we talked about portions and protien…all that good stuff that I need to keep me on track. We did hope I wouldn’t have to go back to recording my food intake. The reality for me right now, is I need to still record it. I am not in that place where I am able to self monitor and still lose weight. I can self monitor and MAINTAIN weight, that is HUGE for me! The great news is I only gained 2lbs over the holidays. 2lbs!!!! That is already gone.

I met with my life coach tonight and we talked about the book Wired For Joy by Lauren Mellin, and how it is making a significant impact on me. The concept is Emotional Behaviour Therapy. I did a session on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, and I think EBT fits me better. I am an Emotional Gal! Ask anyone who talks to me. I cry, laugh, fume along with a multitude of other emotions and then feed of these…literally. Eating emotions is not cool. I have intellectually figured out that food is fuel not therapy, however, in practice I still have moments where I struggle. I am WAY better, but I still find some days harder than others. The reality is, I may always find it hard. EBT is helping me find the tools I need to be sucessful. THAT is the BEST news!

I have been asked by a colleague to train for a half marathon – help motivate her because apparently I have it all going on… HA! Word to the wise, it may look easy but it is not. I agreed to do one. Then I realized what I had said. I said YES. HOLY MOLY Batman! I committed to walking another half marathon. I circled the date on the calendar and 2 other gals decided to join us. I marked out my training schedule and worked out my nutrition to see me through. Luckily I have an excellent dietician who is very supportive and helpful, along with my Doc. He thinks its great I am still going strong after one year of being so committed. That boggles my mind…I am still here after one year people!

I began my training on Monday. I wanted to see if I could run. Hmmm  My knee made me cry. I ran 1/2km and my knee (that I injured Oct 2010/torn MCL) prefers that I didn’t run. I will agree to it. Walk it is. I continued on walking. What amazed me is my pace. I was walking at a 10:20 pace. I never did that all of last year while I was training. This is where I am STARTING! At this rate I am on target for a 3 – 3:15 finish. That would be a dream come true! My goal is under 4 hours. I finished my last one 4:29 hr. I am very excited, more so than I was last year.

My Life Coach asked me why I thought I was more excited. I think it is because I have figured out the food issues, and now I am just working on “Stuff”, you know, the crappy stuff that makes you a better human. The stuff that we all hope our kids grow up without. The stuff that dreams are made of. I am fixing and dropping that baggage off, moving forward and training for my next half marathon in Calgary on May 27th.

See you at the finish line! I’ll be the one walking with Mo.

No Christmas Guilt Mo!