Tuesday, October 30, 2007

*Kate Nash*

If you haven't heard her music, you should. I heard one of her songs on the radio last week and immediately loved her. I didn't catch her name on the radio but remebered some of the lyrics and with the magic of Google I found out the song was called Foundations and her name is Kate Nash. Then tonight I downloaded (legally of course) a ton of her songs and wow, she's such a fun and interesting artist with great lyrics. I believe she's British (thick accent) but would be Welsh, Scottish or Irish... I'm bad with telling one UK accent from another. Anyway... wanted to share my discovery with you all.

Is this thing on? Cause you're gonna wanna hear this!

I had a 5.5 pound drop this week! (2.5 kilos). Yes, you read it right... that's 5.5lbs down from last weeks extremely crap weigh in. WOWZO! I'm a flying pretty high right now I have to admit. This is the biggest drop in numbers I've had in one week ever... since the very beginning.

As I said last week I was retaining some water due to it being that TOM so I'm fairly certain 2 - 3 pounds of this weeks loss was water related but the fact of the matter is that I am now at 229.24 pounds (104.2 kilos) even after the weeks befores Elation Eating problem. WOOHOO!

I am now 29 pounds away from my biggest hugest goal! I am a mere 29 pounds away from what started this whole thing. I am 29 pounds from being the healthiest I have ever been in my life! 29 small tiny insignificant pounds are all that is standing in my way to finally have won this weight loss battle for the first and last time in my life! If I can keep the excitement that I am feeling right at this very moment up for the next few months by golly I think I could really pull this off. WOW! What a great way to start my day.

I hope you all have a wonderful and healthy week!

p.s. I'll have to update my stats later today as I'm runnng out the door for work now.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Weight Loss Tips (the website)

I was recently asked to be interviewed (via a q&a form) for a weight loss website. My interview is now posted so I thought I'd share! Click here to read my interview!

If you've been with me from the get-go you probably won't learn anything new that you didn't already know about me. I think most of the tips I have already shared here but for those of you who maybe new to my blog it gives the scoop on where I have been, what I've done and what I hope to do.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Sunday's food

Breakfast: 2 coffee's w/ Splenda. 1 cup f/f vanilla yogurt with a small sliced up banana.

no morning snack today.

Lunch: a deliciously fabulous Thai curry stir fry packed with fresh veggies (and pineapple) made with beef. It had zucchini, cabbage, onion, mini-corn-on-the-cob things, a little leek and that's about it. I was glad to get in so many vegetables after yesterdays dismal veg intake. The dish did have noodles in it and I did eat a most of them but not all. One large diet pepsi to drink.

snack: an ice cream cone! YAY ok so not healthy but yummy none the less.

supper: 2 egg omelet with a teaspoon of cheese (it's like a cream cheese only not cream cheese) and one of my frozen yogurt snacks.

Water: 6 - 8oz cups so far (it's still a bit early I'm sure I'll drink more)

So I had plenty of low fat dairy once again. My vegetable intake was good. My fruit portions were great. My protein was good. My carbs weren't over the top so that's good. Not too much fat just some in the cheese, a little in the lunch (to cook the meat) and in the ice cream of course. Overall today was much better than yesterday. I got in 45 minutes of exercise so that means I've met two of the three workouts for my weekly goal so far.

It'll be interesting to see what happens on the scale Tuesday.

If anybody who uses Blogspot could please tell me why I have to go into HTML and manually put in paragraph breaks even though I type them in my text I would really apprecaiate it. Please explain in short dumbed down sentences. I is not smart with computers.

Richard Simmons 101

I don't believe there is anybody out there who has struggled with their weight all of their life who doesn't know who Richard Simmons is.

He's well known for his passion for weight loss, his Deal a Meal cards, his Sweating to the Oldies videos, his little bitty afro and too-short-shorts, amongst other accomplishments and fashion faux pas. Back when I was 18 or 19 he was this big girls weight loss hope when nobody else seemed to understand. He always had an encouraging message. He knew I could do it. He had faith in me. He made me feel like I could really be a weight loss success story.

I sweated to the oldies in my old apartment that I shared with my friend Pam. I loved that even though I was so over weight and so out of shape that I could keep up with his tapes. I loved that other unthin people were on his videos. I loved the part at the end where they all told how much weight they had lost. I loved it all.

Of course I wasn't dealing with my emotional eating issues at the time I was dealing myself a meal and sweating to the oldies so I was never one of Richards prodigies. I did lose some weight just from the exercise but once I got tired of "Build me up buttercup" playing over and over in my living room the tapes took their final resting place in the cupboard to gather dust.

Today I was browsing my cd collection looking for some music to do my "naked free dance" to (I'm still too sore to jump rope) and ran across a cd named "Richard Simmons 101". It was a cd my friend Louis burned for when we were about 23 or 24 years old. I hadn't listened to the cd in years but I remember when he made it for me. Once again I was trying to lose weight. We were frequenting many-a-dance-club in those days and this CD was filled with songs from that time in our lives.

I popped it in, set the timer for 45 minutes and began free dancing all over my living room. The more I danced the happier I became. The songs that I was shaking and shimmying too had positive lyrics and were upbeat and my attitude followed right along. Listening to those songs took me back to the fun times I used to have with my friends in those clubs.

I like to incorporate some moves from the old videos into my "free dance" workouts to make sure I'm working out my muscles and not just my heart. As I remembered step-ball-changing and cha-chaing with Richard I started thinking about how much fun I was having.

As I shoulder-shook and shimmied through Unspeakable Joy (great positive song, you should download it) I started thinking about all the blogs I read and how so many people out there are so self conscious about their weight to the point that it hinders their ability to exercise. It's such a shame. Here I am, 230 pounds of woman, half naked (sports bra and boy shorts only) in my living room dancing around like a total yahoo, thrilled to death, having a blast and there are some people who would love to lose weight but are too ashamed to take those first few steps to do it, even if it is with the shades closed in their living room and nobody else can see them.

So of course that led me to think, why in the world aren't there more video's like that out there? I don't want to sweat to the oldies. I'm only 31 for pete's sake. But why isn't there something out there for people who are out of shape, who love to dance or just want to start moving? Why aren't their big people videos out there for us big people MADE by big people? Why isn't there a fun, up to date dvd with fun up to date music for fun people who just don't know where to start? I'm not talking about an hour long totally choreographed dvd that you should take dance lessons for but why isn't there a "Naked Free Dance" video out there for people who are really just beginning? I started as 301 pound women and even those beginners dvds with modified moves were sometimes too much not to mention I don't want to look at thin women in their leotards while I'm sweating like mad in my over sized workout clothes.

Mr. Simmons had (has) some really good ideas and I think he really did (does) touch a lot of people's lives but I think we need somebody fresh, young and new that connects with today's younger generation. Any volunteers? Anybody? Any one? Bueller? So I guess what I'm asking is where is OUR generation's Richard Simmons hiding? Can't somebody make us "sweat to the current tunes"? Am I going to have to make a video of myself free dancing and post it on here to only end up on youtube as the joke of the week before somebody will stand up and take action (please don't make me do that, it would be u-g-l-y).

Surely there is a need/want for this in the diet industry? Where is our knight in shining short-shorts who will take us by the hand, let us know that we're ok, we're worth it, we can do it and that he/she is there for us? Will the new Richard Simmons please stand up?

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Skippin with Sarah

It's been a while since I've disgraced myself with one of my poems-a-la-Sarah. I believe the Ode To My Kneecaps was the last. Since taking up jump rope once again I thought it was a perfect time to write myself a little weight inspired jump rope song. I tried to keep the pattern of the songs I used to sing as a kid while skipping rope and I think it'll work. I'll call it "Skipping with Sarah".

Een, twee, drie
Let's burn a calorie

I'm hoppin like a bunny
And I'm sure I'm looking funny

Come and jump along with me
We know that exercise is key

skiping rope is so fun
when you don't like to run

I like jumpin rope
and there's no time to mope

We'll get our hearts a pumpin
with our ropes we're a jumpin

and now our song will end
and we'll do it all again!

I have no shame. Just.no.shame. :o)

Food for the day.

Today I have eaten:

Breakfast - F/f vanilla Yogurt w/banana and 2 cups-o-joe w/Splenda. (adding a cap full of vanilla to your coffee grounds before pouring the water through is yummy. Subtle but noticeably different)

Lunch: Tuna salad, lettuce and cheese on a wheat roll that had seeds baked into it (sunflower and some other kind of cracked seed). One can of diet coke.

Snack: Some fruit and frozen yogurt cup thing that I am addicted to. It's got bits of pineapple and raspberries on top of a little cup of frozen yogurt. It's sweet and sour and oh so delicious. It's about 80-100 calories.

Supper: This is going to sound totally stupid but I have no idea what this thing was that I ate. It's a Turkish food. There's a big Turkish population in the Netherlands so I end up trying new things lots of times and have no clue what they're called and of course there is no English equivalent. This was a sort of flat bread with a tomato and pepper paste smeared over it. It's got some sort of hot spice on it (sambal I'm assuming) and I think it's meatless. I baked it in the oven and as always it was tasty and filling. The only thing I can compare it to is a cheese-less slice of pizza.

Snack - another frozen yogurt cup.

This is a typical menu for me on the weekends. Of course the foods are switched up, sometimes I'll have a salad or we'll go out for dinner but over all this is how my weekends go for the most part.

I'm taking a look at it all my weekend diet is still lacking some essentials... like veggies for instance. Other then some lettuce on my salad I didn't have one single vegetable today. Well the tomato pepper spread on the flat bread is a veg I guess but there was less than a tablespoonful on there so not even a full portion of veg. Not good.

Other than tuna (and it wasn't a full portion of tuna) I didn't have any protein (with the exception of protein that may be found in the unidentified seeds and flat bread thing). Not good.

I did get in my dairy with the yogurt, cheese and frozen snack. Yay me!

I got in some fruit with the banana and fruit bits on my frozen snack, although they don't add up to a portion. Okay.

I got my carbs with the roll and flat bread. Ugh.

I got fat with the mayo in the tuna salad (although it was quite dry) and seeds. ACK!

How can I miss out on veggies but be sure to get in my fats and carbs? How can I be short on fruit? I like fruit! Why am I not eating more of it? Protein is supposed to make you feel fuller longer and you should try to eat some at every meal. I hardly had any protein all day long. I am all for eating low calorie but I also believe your calories should come from nutrient packed foods. I'm hardly eating anything nutrient packed on the weekends.

Journaling my food has really been an eye opener. I'm going to have to make a better effort for healthier weekend eating.

The Bread Brigade

So I've mentioned before that it's tough to live in the Netherlands and not eat heaps of bread. Yesterday was a prime example of what I'm talking about. Here's how the day went.

I put on make-up yesterday which took up the time I usually spend eating breakfast. Sometimes you have to sacrifice to be beautiful I guess and since I wear make-up about 4 times a year I guess it's alright this time. I knew I could just grab something on my way to drop Marco off for work. So I had a pistolet (a football shaped roll) with cheese from the shop right across from his work. (Bread #1)

snack: It was somebodies birthday at work so we had pie. I don't skip these occasions to eat pie. They don't happen often and a slice of pie every once in a while isn't going to kill me. My life will not be without pie, cakes, cookies, chocolates and the sorts on OCCASIONS so I don't torture myself and not participate. If I would never participate in the birthday celebrations I really feel like it would lead to me binging later. I don't want to go back down that path any time soon. No depriving for me.

Lunch was typical Dutch lunch in the canteen (and please let me know, do you say canteen in the US? I don't think so but my English and Aussie colleagues always call it the canteen so now I can't remember if we do too. I think we just use cafeteria.) so a buffet of breads and spreads. I did manage to skip any bread here and just had my cuke/tomato/red bell pepper/feta/pesto salad. (bread #2)

snack: one orange

Dinner was to be at Marco's parents house. We go there about once a week for supper. Usually it's a typical Dutch hot meal consisting of veg, boiled potatoes (no salt, no pepper, no butter...no shit) and meat (usually beef in my family's house) but last night was an exception. They were watching our nephews, Jordi and Milan, so they didn't want to cook a real meal so what was the alternative? BREAD of course! (bread #3). I was starving by time we got there and over ate by quite a bit. I had an open faced egg and bacon sandwich (fried ACK!), a small beef steak (fried ACK!), and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (fattening ACK!). I followed it up with a cup of vanilla and chocolate pudding mixed. ACK! ACK! ACK!

So in the course of one day I could have eaten bread at all three meals! And before I started making a conscious effort to eat less bread I probably would have eaten bread at all three meals on more than one occasion. Granted my food intake yesterday sucked big time but it could have been worse had I not had the salad option for lunch. So yesterday wasn't a gold star winning day for me. It was a "put your name on the chalkboard and if I have to do that twice in a week then I get detention" day. Lousy lousy lousy.

But today is another day. I just keep going and keep yesterday's choices in the back of my head when I make today's selections. I started with a lovely breakfast of f/f yogurt with a sliced up banana and coffee. Good start...now I just need to keep the momentum going.

In other news... if I thought my abs hurt yesterday then I was in for a rude freaking awakening last night and today. OH MY GOD BECKY! Every time I would roll over in bed it would wake me up from the soreness. Crazy to think all this muscle soreness was caused by a simple 25 minute jump rope routine. I have a little tenderness in my calves but otherwise it's just my tummy that's kicking my arse. I'm going to try and jump again today and see how it goes.

Have a great healthy weekend all!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Hoi skipper!

When I think of skipping rope I think of being in 3rd and 4th grade on the playground singing little rhymes as my friends and I skipped ourselves silly. "Cinderella Dress in Yella" and "Fudge Fudge call the Judge" were a few of my favorites songs. We used to laugh as we chanted "texaco texaco over the hill to Mexico". We even learned double Dutch which too way too much concentration to even think about singing cute songs.

Last night's skipping wasn't quite the merriment I used to remember it being. Oh it was fun at first but 10 minutes into it I wasn't singing "Fudge Fudge call the judge" but I was crying out "Marco Marco GIVE ME OXYGEN". Oxygen doesn't really rhyme with much.

I had set the time on the stove for 30 minutes because that seemed like a good starting point since it was my first time trying it since my school yard days. I had googled 'jump rope for exercise' before I began and most sites recommended skipping for 20 counts and resting for 20-30 building up your stamina slowly.

Twenty counts seemed a bit simple so I decided I'd skip for 50 and rest for 30. That was an enthusiastic goal I learned quickly. I jumped in my living room on the carpet to try to help with the impact but it did bother my knees a smidgen. My legs were burning nicely fifteen minutes into it and my arms were getting a bit fatigued. Surprisingly enough I was actually sweating. I continued on my 50 jumps but began needing to rest for 30-40 counts in between sets. I found that by counting up to 25 and then backwards down to 0 it helped to make it seem like time was going quicker. Sometimes you just have to play head games with yourself to make it through.

I ended up having to stop at 25 minutes because I was getting a bit dizzy. I'm all for pushing yourself but you also have to know when enough is just enough. I really felt the workout all over my body though. My legs and feet were tired (I jumped in socks to try and strengthen my foot muscles). My forearms were a bit tired for all the rope twirling but what really surprised me most was how bad my abs hurts afterwards. I could feel the burn within minutes of stopping the workout and I still feel the soreness in them today. Apparently jumping rope is a really good full body workout.

All in all I was really pleased with the workout. It took no time and I feel the results. Not to mention I can feel good that I actually did some movement this week. It's something that I can do and bring with me anywhere and I can do it in the house too. I'm really glad I decided to try it out. Now I just need some clever little rhymes to make the time pass quickly... "Sarah and Marco sitting in a tree..."

Thursday, October 25, 2007

In a nutshell...

Here's the low down on my food intake for the whole day:

Honey Nut Cheerios with Non-fat Milk with a small banana sliced up in it. (YUMMY! I know cheerios aren't the healthier breakfast cereal choice but I really like them so I'm willing to take the caloric hit for them every once in a while. Usually I'm a Fruit and Fiber girl but those little honey nut o's called out to me.)

snack: One forest berry fruit bar (I don't know what the equivalent in the US is but one bar is around 125 calories. I try to keep all my snacks to between 125 and 150 calories).

Lunch: one dönor kebab (shaved lambs meat sandwich with lettuce, tomato, cukes, sambal and garlic sauce on a fresh roll) and a spinach/feta pastry pie thingy.

snack: another forest berry fruit bar (I usually have a piece of fruit for snack at this point in the day but due to unusual circumstances I wasn't able to get any)

supper: Chinese beef stir fry. We ate it minus any noodles or rice and it was really good. I didn't miss the extra carbs at all and I'm equally as satisfied afterwards as I am when I eat the noodles with it. Interesting don't ya think?

Drinks: 2 cups of coffee with splenda, 2-8oz. cans of diet coke and 7-8 glasses of water.

Overall I think it's a pretty good day for me. I usually eat more veg with lunch but had to eat out (again due to unusual circumstances) so they weren't available to me.

We've been opening our minds and mouths to a bit more Asian influences lately, trying some new dishes and they've all been pretty tasty. They're packed full of veg which is great and usually we have chicken with it so it's fairly healthy. We get them in prepackaged amounts so there is only two portions which helps me with portion control.

I haven't exercised yet this week (it is only Wednesday and my week starts on Tuesday) but as soon as I'm done here I'm going to try out my new jump rope. I got it last night and like a gi-normous kid I skipped all over the aisle in the store to "test it out". I'm going to google 'jumping rope' to see if there are any exercise regimens out there that include it. I'll let you know how it goes.

I didn't think I would like it as well as I do but posting my food intake for the day has really helped keep me on task. I never have been a food journal keeper because it tends to make me food obsess which is something I'm trying to avoid. Doing it this way doesn't seem to make me feel so "oh my god should I eat that? It has 5 calories in it and I just had 20 calories 4 hours ago and I'm only allowed 1200 per day and it's only noon"-ish. A slight exaggeration but you get the point. And THANK YOU TEALE who left the brilliant comment "if you bite it, write it!". It really cracked me up.
Alrighty, I'm off to skip some rope!

To be continued, continued here!

If I thought lunch was difficult yesterday I was in for a rude awakening when it came to supper. I had a Mary Kay meeting here to see about becoming a Mary Kay sales representative (and THAT meeting is for a whole other blog somewhere in the Cults category) that ended up taking all evening long. It was 9 by time we got out of there and that means there was slim pickins for supper. We drove out of the parking lot and low and behold there stood the Golden Arches. Ugh. It was the only choice we had in the neighborhood so we went in. I was so very temped to get a Big Mac value meal. Some value huh? Tons of calories, tons of fat, heaps of grease and one belly ache for the low low price of a few euros. I was able to bypass the Mcgreasy burger and fries and settled for a Caesar salad with grilled chicken and a fruit and yogurt cup. It was actually quite delicious and I was pleasantly filled by nights end. I guess that’s not really settling then is it?

I also felt less bloated and puffy yesterday and this morning when I woke up so I thought I’d step on the scale to check if I’d dropped any poundage from water weight and sure enough I was back down to 104.8 kilos (230 lbs)! That’s 0.2 kilos less that my weigh-in 2 Tuesday’s ago but not quite back to where I was prior (by only 0.2 kilos though!). I have great hopes for this week! Amazing what water retention can do to a woman’s body. What’s horrible is that I always feel like it’s such a lame excuse for not losing one week. I make myself feel guilty for it but in reality there is very little I can do about it.

I’ll post again this evening to let you know how my eating went today!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Day 1 of this weeks plan...

It's only Wednesday afternoon here but I thought I'd log on and let you know how my little plan is going that I talked about yesterday. Breakfast went off without a hitch. I had a small bowl of oatmeal with some Splenda. I remembered to pack some extra Splenda to take to work with me for my non-choco coffee. I had one cup and if I'm totally honest it was disappointing. Dutch coffee is so strong which is why I started drinking the chocolate coffee in the first place, to take away some of the power from the coffee. I'm going to try to water it down a bit tomorrow and see if it makes a difference. Otherwise I may just cut out the coffee altogether. I'm not that big of a caffeine addict that it will bother me.
Lunch was TOUGH! I had my cucumber/tomato/red pepper salad with some feta and pesto but it really took all my strength not to grab a ton of bread to eat with it or have a peanut butter sandwich with honey afterwards. I did have one small heel-slice from a healthy loaf of dark pumpernickel-ish bread. That's a vast improvement though. The thing is that they have this little buffet of breads, meats, cheeses, peanut butter, jam, nutella, honey and other goodies all laid out on the table right in front of you. Sitting there in front of that food makes all of us at the office eat more than we usually do (we discussed this many times). The only alternative to not sitting in the canteen would be to take our lunches up to our offices with us which is really anti-social and something I would like to avoid. I hope this part gets easier.
I think I'm going to try to blog every day at lunch about these little changes I'm trying to make to see if that helps keep me on track.
To be continued...

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Elation eating took its toll on my toosh.

As semi-expected all of the elation eating I did this week took it's toll on my weigh-in this morning. Keep in mind I am still semi-bloated from it being that TOM but that doesn't excuse a whopping 3.74 pound (1.7 kilo) gain this week. Did I just hear somebody do a Joey Lawrence "WHOA"? (Yeah, you're showing your age if you know what that is!)

What a disappointment. I've been doing so well recently that it was actually painful to see those numbers on the scale this week. Not shocking because I cheat weighed-in on Saturday but I was still really bummed. I know the damage is 100% totally recoverable and reversible but geesh I'm just so disappointed in myself. I don't have anybody to blame but big ole me though.

So this week I am going to try to do the following:

1) Cut down my dinner carbs. We're a meat/potato/veg-supper eating family. This week I'm going to try to lay off the carb at supper and load up on the veg. I'm already eating less carbs then I used to, way back when, but desperate times call for desperate measures.

2) Cut out my morning choco-coffee altogether. My great wonderful super duper sweet colleague Richard just got back from the US and brought me some Splenda so I'll bring some to work with me and have regular, non-chocolate, coffee with some splenda in it. Probably between 40 and 80 calories saved there.

3) Cut out the extra bread at lunchtime. I try to eat a veggie salad at lunch with just a slice of bread but I almost always end up eating more than one slice and sometimes up to 3 or 4. I also have been in the habit of taking a half piece of bread and slathering it in honey for "something sweet" after lunch. I'm cutting that out.

4) I'm going to try to repeat "every calorie does count" to myself more often. It worked so well for me before and I just got out of the habit of it once things were going decent. Isn't that silly? You find something that obviously works for you and as soon as you get into a "groove" you stop doing it because you think "hey I'm doing really well"! DUH!

5) I will exercise at least 3 times this week. That's a huge improvement on my non-existent exercise regime I've been keeping lately. I'm still hoping for that DDR for Christmas Santa!

Those 5 changes ought to put me in the negative numbers again next week. I'll keep you posted as the week goes on to how I'm doing with my new mini-goals.

I hope you all have a healthy week!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

IF and only IF

I try not to discuss our fertility problems on here too much for a couple reasons. This is a weight loss blog and I like to try to stay "on task" and focused. I mean, I'm sure if you wanted to read about somebodies reproductive problems you'd google "fertility blogs" and go from there. I also avoid the issue a lot because it is extremely difficult to talk about at times, emotionally speaking. Since being diagnosed with "azoospermia" in early 2006 we have been taken on a tumultuous roller coaster ride that just seems endless. We would have times of complete elation thinking we were on our way to becoming parents followed by weeks and months of desperate sadness not knowing if our hopes of having a baby would ever come to be. Anybody who knows me will tell you that I've never been a big fan of roller coasters. I get motion sick easily (like on regular old swings in a park) and I'll be glad when the gates open and finally let us off this particular trying ride.

I tried to keep weight loss separate from fertility because they're two different facets in my life but at the same time they're one on the same. No, our IF (infertility) isn't caused by my weight, although many people automatically assume so when they find out we are having difficulties, but our infertility has been a driving point in my weight loss. My journey began because I needed something to focus on to take away from my hurt and anxiety over our diagnosis. I began this trip not just because I needed to drop some weight (okay a ton of weight) but because I needed an outlet for my fears and frustrations. I'd love to think that even if we weren't dealing with IF that I would still be doing great things for my body and my health but the truth is that I'm not so sure that's true.

With every pound I lose I think to myself "I am just that much healthier for when I do become a Mom". With every weight I lift or habit I break a little voice in the back of my head whispers "way to go, you're that much closer to being the kind of person you want to be for your child" or "now you will be able to set a good example". It's amazing... this little "being" that hasn't even been created yet is already so powerful. This "child" has already got me wrapped around it's tiny little finger. This dream of ours is so loved by me that I am making changes that I have never been able to make in my life before...ever.

As I blogged earlier this week we've had some good news come our way. And with that hopeful news I've seem to have taken a few steps in the wrong direction. I'm officially calling myself out on them now in hopes that they will stop ("they" being the voices in my head). Although we just got the news on Wednesday I've been in a bit of a "panic" since. The logical thing would be to try and lose as much as I can, to stay on task, to focus in order to be as healthy as possible for a hopeful impending pregnancy. But when have I ever been logical? Not this week, that's for sure.

The more I think about the possibility that I could be a mom in the next year or so the worse I seem to eat. Some people only associate emotional eating with depression but I'm here to put a stop to that big fat (no pun intended) myth. I'm thrilled to death right now but still eating emotionally. To be fully honest I've been on cloud nine, in la-la land, floating on a cloud, tip toeing through the tulips (and all of those other cutsie phrases that mean "so happy I could pee") and seem to be having an out of body experience. It's like I'm eating food that I know I don't need or even want and I say to myself "self, you don't need that" but my body doesn't respond. My brain has suddenly become detached from my head. The good Sarah on my shoulder is getting the piss kicked out of her by the devil Sarah on the other side. I'm just so unfocused and the worst part about it is that I'm not depressed so I don't even have the whole guilt thing going on to put an end to it. "Elation eating" is a dangerous path to travel and I've been flying down it full speed ahead. I'm realizing it now though. I'm calling myself out. I'm giving good Sarah the tag and I'm mentally kicking bad Sarah in the crotch. Elation eating has to stop.

So although our IF isn't weight loss related, it's still a close relative. It's relative because it has been a driving force behind my success. It's relative because I do want to be a good healthy smart eater and pass those traits on down the line. It's relative because I should be as healthy as possible before expecting my body to be expecting.

So I vow to wipe this permanent grin off of my face that has been there since Wednesday and get back to work. Well, I can work and smile at the same time can't I?

Friday, October 19, 2007

Miracles CAN happen!

FINALLY! After what seems like weeks... oh wait, it has been weeks...we finally have internet, telephone and TV connection once again! YAY!!!! So here I am sitting with the phone cradled in my neck, pc at my fingertips and remote control on my lap. I'm petting them. Yep. I'm petting them all. Oh how I've missed you my little electronic friends! I think the remote is actually purring... oh wait no... that's me.
All joking aside, I'm really looking forward to getting back to my regular blogging. Nothing earth shattering has happened since I've last posted but trying to sneak in some blogging between my lunch hour (or 3/4 of an hour) is hard to do.
I've been doing pretty well food-wise recently. It's fairly chilly in the Netherlands right now so it's great weather for homemade veggie soup. YUMMY. I've already made two huge batches in the past few weeks and let me tell ya, mmm mmm mmm Campbell's doesn't have anything on my sveggie soup. I don't follow a recipe so it's different every time but every time it's really really tasty. I cut up all of my favorite soup stuff, throw it in a big wok (I don't have a soup pot so this is my closest alternative) add some beef or chicken stock and simmer forever. A pinch of Tony's cajun seasoning is what makes it really kick though. My first batch this winter contained a new and interesting veggie for me. I was at the market and my friend told me to get one of these long-green onion-on-steroids-looking-things, promising me it was edible and good. She didn't know the English word for them (she's Greek) but in Dutch they are prei. I took her advice, brought the new veg and chopped it up for the soup. Low and behold she was right. It was yummy in the soup. Come to find out a prei is a leek in English. Who knew? Well probably lots of healthy people knew but I honestly had no idea. I don't think I've ever eaten a leek before but I'll not be passing them up in the grocery any more.
I'm TOTALLY excited that I'm a mere 5 pounds away from earning my 75 pound shoes. And just in time for winter. I'm thinking a pair of knee high black leather boots would look stunning on my new thinner stems. This week is going to be tricky though as it's that TOM again. I feel swollen and bloated but hopefully that'll be gone by Tuesday's weigh in. It's amazing that your body can retain so much fluid but I've seen it happen month after month where my weight will fluctuate 3 to 5 pounds due to water retention. I've been cutting back on my soda (I don't really eat that much salt) and increasing my water this week to try to stave off the bloat as much as possible. Being so close to a mini goal always makes me feel a bit rushed or anxious but I just have to keep telling myself that this is a marathon, not a sprint.
My exercise regime is still in the crapper. There is really no good excuse. I just cannot get myself up and moving when it's so dark out in the morning and black by 7:30pm. I have talked it over with Marco and he says he'd be willing to take up some dance classes with me if they aren't too god awful expensive so I'm going to start looking into those today. YAY! I'm still hoping for that DDR to show up on my doorstep but no sign of it yet. Christmas is coming though, maybe Santa will read my blog and it'll end up under the tree. Either way I have to find a way to get my butt in gear once again. I hate the way I feel when I don't work out and the only way to change that is to work out. Vicious circle.
In other non-weight news... we've recently had some hopeful news regarding our infertility so I would really appreciate it if you guys could keep us in your thoughts and prayers if you're the thinking and praying type. It's much appreciated.
Have a great weekend all!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Still no internet at home

so I'm posting this weeks weigh in from work. I gained 0.1 kilos or 0.22 pounds this week which is nothing to get all up in arms about but it's not a loss either. I'll have to push a little harder this week. My exercise has been in the crapper since moving so I really need to get back in the game there. My food has been pretty decent over the last month so I really think it's the lack-o-movement that's getting me.
Sorry so short. Hang in there, I'll be back to blogging good, fun stuff to read soon!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Just a quick update before the weekend. I still have no internet/tv/telephone which explains my absence of blogging and picture sharing. Apparently “something went wrong” while transferring our account to the new address and nobody at our provider can tell us exactly what the problem is. They’ve tried saying it will take another 15 days to get the problem worked out. Considering we’ve already been without these things for 2 weeks I’m not exactly thrilled. I hate to do it but I’m going to have to play my “crazy American yelling” card and give them a ring this evening. I don’t abuse my use of the crazy American card and I always try to give them a chance to explain first before I go nutso on them so no worries there. I doubt it will do much good but at least I’ll know I tried and next year when we’re not resigning with this provider I’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that the big multi-million dollar company is missing my less-than100-euro-per-month payment. Er…well…I’ll call anyway.

Hope you all are having a healthy week!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

What a stupendous week this is turning out to be!

And it's only Tuesday! I have been sick for the past week or so with the final crescendo of grossness happening Sunday and Monday. It's been a bit of the stomach and intestinal (sorry for the TMI) flu and boy what fun I've been having. Me and my 'water closet' got to know a lot of each other. So why is this such a stupendous week you ask? Well I'll tell ya!

I am down another 1.32 pounds this morning and I have reached a 70 pound mark!!!! 70.40 pounds to be exact (32 kilos). I cannot freaking believe that I have successfully lost 70 pounds!!!! I am more than elated. I am beyond thrilled. I am sincerely overjoyed. I am amazed. I am blissful. I am every-other-synonym-for-the-phrase-"wooohoooooo"-dotted-with-quadruple-exclamation-points that is out there and known to man. I used to be a 301 pound woman an now I am a mere 30 pounds away from weighing 200 pounds! WOOHOO!!!!

And THAT was just the start of my day. I got to work and checked my e mail to discover that Experience Life magazine will be quoting lil-ole-me in their January 2008 issue! The piece will be called "Focus on Fitness" about the fitness-weight loss connection. I spoke with a freelance writer, Gina DeMillo Wagner, for this article a while back and finally they've contacted me for some fact checking and such to get the final story done. It's just a little snippet from me but NEVER in a million years did I think I would ever be quoted in a magazine but even more so NEVER in a FITNESS MAGAZINE!!!! It's like I'm living in an alternate universe starring a healthier hotter me!

WOW! What a wonderful Tuesday! We're getting the Internet hooked up today (supposedly) so I'll be able to blog more frequently but really, after a day like today, what more is there to blog about?

I hope you all have a wonderful healthy week. Oh and one more thing.


Thursday, October 04, 2007

Handy Dandy Tips!

I don’t have much time to be super original so I thought I’d copy and paste some of my more common weight loss tips for those who are just beginning their efforts to drop a few (or a slew of) pounds. Here is the advice I give out most frequently.

Throw out all your unhealthy snacks. If it's not there you can't eat it. Most important in this step is don't forget to replace them with healthy alternatives. I went all out throwing out every scrap of junk food when I began but then absent mindedly I didn’t replace it with anything. It led me to dig into my husbands snack drawer which wasn’t exactly healthy. You’re going to get hungry. It’s a part of life. Be prepared for when it happens.

Get rid of food triggers that make you want to eat, such as cookie scented candles, brown sugar or apple pie scented candles, magazines full of pictures of fattening desserts that sit near the couch that you can’t help but see, and the likes.

Learn what a portion is and measure them until you are good enough to eyeball it eventually. I still measure every once in a while to keep myself in check.

Set a very specific goal. Say "I want to lose X pounds in X amount of time. Then break it down. This means I need to lose X pounds per month and X pounds per week." Make sure your goal is healthy and attainable. In other words don’t set yourself up for failure by saying “I want to lose 10 pounds every month for 5 months” because it’s just not healthy and would be extremely hard to achieve. Allow some flexibility with your goals. Say I want to lose between 4 and 8 pounds every month so if you have a bad week and gain you can still make up for it and meet your monthly goal.

Don’t make all your goals weight loss related. Sometimes pounds just don’t come off for a week. If you still followed your plan all week long (exercised 3 times, eat healthy every meal, didn’t binge, whatever your goals are) and didn’t manage to lose then you should still celebrate that you did something good for yourself even if the scale doesn’t say so. It keeps the fact that weight loss isn’t the only reason to do this in perspective, health is more important.

Set up an award system for yourself and celebrate even the small victories. Don’t discount the fact that you NEVER used to take the stairs but today you did it twice, only riding in the elevator once. That’s a big improvement! No, it’s not perfect but it’s still better than you were doing for yourself in the past.

Find something that works for YOU and that YOU can live with and stick with it. There are a million people losing weight and twice as many ways to go about it. One way may be great for one person but may just not work for you. You have to find what you are comfy with and do that.

Don't get caught up in too many trends and get yourself overwhelmed. If you're going to count calories then do that and don't worry about what people on Atkins are doing. If you're going to do Weight Watchers then count your points and don’t get caught up in what South Beachers are telling you. There is SO much information out there to wade through, take small steps and try to have blinders on for a while, until you get into your groove THEN add something else in if you want (such as do WW but also try to eat clean). It's so easy to be standing in an aisle at the store trying to pick out a food and think "it is low calories but has some carbs but it has protein but it's got some sugar" it's just information overload and you’ll end up frustrated and with an empty cart.

Little things do make a difference. If you can't make a complete overhaul at first then take baby steps. If you currently drink soda all day long and can only handle slowly adding some water in your diet then do it that way. Drink one glass in the morning for one week and be proud that you did it. Then up your goals. Gradual works well and helps keep that overwhelming feeling at bay.

Push yourself and be honest with yourself. If you're strolling through the park and in your head you tell yourself "I went for a brisk walk today" then you're only fooling yourself. Push yourself because nobody else is going to push you.

Don't discount the benefits of strength training. You don't have to lift 100 pound weights a million times to benefit from weight training. Even a few exercises using your own body as weight is a great start. The more muscle you have (and women it’s very hard for our bodies to “bulk up” so don’t use that as an excuse) the more calories you will burn in a resting position. I’d much rather burn 100 calories while napping because I have more muscle than burning 25 calories while napping because I don’t strength train. It’s a fair trade off. Even if you can’t see it yet because of the fat, rest assured it’s there and it’s working for you. You don’t have to have a gym membership either. No excuses!

Exercise is like diet... you're going to have a million people telling you that their way is the right way and the only way... find a way that WORKS for you and stick to it.

Don't obsess over the numbers as they are just a small part of weight loss. You're doing something beautiful for your body no matter what the scale tells you week to week.

Be patient, weight loss is a marathon not a sprint.

Honestly, it doesn't take me any more time to prepare a healthy meal than it does to bake a frozen dinner or cook a less healthy meal. You do have to consciously make an effort to do this though, that's something you have to do on your own, nobody can do it for you. It takes no time to slice up some fresh veggies and lightly sauté them or throw them on the grill with some fish or chicken. Or even faster, eat them raw! Most of my meals are prepared and done within 20 minutes to 1/2 hour and are healthy so I can't use the excuse "it's so much faster to eat unhealthy" because really, it's not.

Make a grocery list/meal plan for the next 3 or 4 days and make one shopping trip for the ingredients. Stick to your plan, no excuses. This small amount of time you spend to plan some healthy meals will save you time in the end as you won't have to think "what should I make for dinner tonight". You'll already know.

After your meal brush your teeth. Nobody likes to eat when you have a clean healthy fresh mouth so it will help stave off the late night snacking.

Start a blog, get a readership. My blog has kept me totally accountable for my actions. It's also been a great outlet and support system.

Remember that nothing is done or undone in one snack, one meal, one day, one week or even one month. If you have a bad food day you didn't ruin anything. You just have to pick yourself up and start again right that very moment. Don’t put it off until Monday. It's all very "lather, rinse, repeat'."

I read Dr. Phil's book the Ultimate Weight Solutions and have had great success with it. It’s a wonderful book for emotional eaters. I have/had 100 pounds to lose and am about 60+ pounds down so far. I highly recommend the book!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Dance Dance Revolution

I've seen a few bloggers using "DDR" as exercise and of course it piqued my curiosity. It sounds like a fun way to get exercise without having to really leave the confinement of your own warm snuggly home. As you've read many-a-times, I'm a big fan of the free dance and often turn on my favorite tunes and dance around my house so this could be something right up my alley.

I know nothing about this game but am extremely interested in learning more. If any of you have any fun DDR stories please post them here.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Good news this morning on the scale. ALL the bloat and puffiness is gone and I’ve managed to lose another 0.1 kilos or 0.22 pounds! LOL It’s actually a little under a 2 pound loss from last weeks “official” weigh-in but I knew that last week I was retaining water badly. I’m feeling really great this week and hope I can keep this momentum going. For some reason I’m feeling really excited about seeing 100 kilos on the scale. That seems to be the driving force behind my recent losses, just to see that 1-0-0, (which is 220 pounds, which will only be 20 pounds from my goal!). I feel very in control right now, very positive, like I really can do this. It’s funny how this comes and goes in waves. Some weeks I feel totally empowered, able bodied, in control and on my way. I feel unstoppable. Some weeks I feel like I’ve been ran over by a Mac truck, totally all over the board with my emotions and just a train wreck. I love the former weeks, the latter I can live without!

We’re all moved in and almost all settled. We have about 10 or so small boxes to unpack still but we’ve been sleeping there all week and it feels GREAT! It actually still feels a little bit unreal. I’m fumbling for light switches and a not quite in a morning routine yet but that will come. I’ve taken tons of before/after pictures that I’ll share once I get my home computer up and running. Should be in about another week. Things move slowly here in Holland, what can I say?!I promise to blog more frequently once I’m blogging from home. Stay tuned!