The Double Life of Elle

The Secret Confessions of an Extra Lusty Broad in a Stick Figure World.

Weigh in #2 and Fat Acceptance January 30, 2009

This week I am down 3.0 lbs!  Before stepping on the scale this time, I had that fleeting “WhatifIdon’tloseanyweightthisweek?!” moment of panic.  I found myself grazing more this week.  At least my pantry is free from any junk food, or this would have been disastrous.  I had extra helpings this week, but I always consulted the hunger scale  before having seconds.  But I think on the days when I enjoyed a second or third serving,  I was confusing thirst with hunger.  I didn’t stay as hydrated as I should have and I think that contributed to my “hunger.”  Bad Elle!  I still managed a loss this week and from now on, I’m going to make sure I drink up.  I also have a feeling Mother Nature might be stopping by in a few days, because of my slightly more “blue” moods over the past couple of days, which also could account for the increased appetite.

So this means that I have completed 2 consecutive weeks of planned, unproccessed, non-fast food meals.  Lusties, I don’t think you realize how amazing this is!  Don’t get me wrong, I have always enjoyed cooking, but before I started this I rarely cooked.  Programmed into my cell phone’s memory is every restaurant that delivers within a 25 mile radius.  There is a McDonald’s less than half-a-mile down the road from my house and I work right across the street from a sandwich shop that makes the most EXCELLENT Italian grinders.  It’s so much easier to stop at or get delivery from this wide variety of choices than to cook an entire meal.  And this is a fine option for your normal, not addicted to food, person who doesn’t feel like making dinner a couple of nights a week.  But not me.  I get a grinder for lunch, then stop at McDonald’s on the way home and maybe even order some Chinese delivery.  EVERYDAY!  (Does anyone else struggle with making meals at home when restaurants/fast food joints are so ubiquitous?) So this whole, making meals at home thing is a huge non-scale-victory for me. 

Because of my fears of gaining weight this week, the idea of Fat Acceptance has been on my mind.  I like the idea of a movement that tries to abolish all of those negative stereotypes we have about the Extra Lusty.  I also like how Healthy at Every Size (HAES) is emphasized.  There are some really great FA blogs out there and one of my favorites happens to be Living ~400lbs in which a 40-something 400lb woman talks candidly about what it’s like to weigh that much and how it doesn’t really affect her life.  She still does all the same things thin people do like work, exercise, and even have sex (funny how a lot of people don’t think fat people are capable of finding someone to sleep with).

Shapely Prose is an excellent multi-authored FA/Feminist blog.  These ladies are not only Extra Lusty, they’re smart and snarky.

Mouthfeel: The Story of Fat has a great post with  links and information about FA and misconceptions about the health of fat people. 

So this begs the question, why don’t I just accept my Extra Lustiness and stop dieting?  Because I didn’t get to 300.6 lbs because of living HAES.  I abused my body to get that far.  But I don’t plan on abusing my body to lose the weight either.  I want to eat nutrious foods, be active and enjoy my life, and hopefully gain some self-esteem.  As I’ve said all along, this isn’t about fitting into a size 4.  It’s about taking control of my health.  And if that means I never reach my goal weight of 167lbs, that’s okay.  As long as I’m living a healthy lifestyle, the number on the scale won’t scare me. 

  Have a great weekend everyone!

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My name is Elle, and I’m addicted to food…and reality tv. January 28, 2009

By this time of the year, a lot of people have given up on their New Year’s Resolutions.  They become too hard to maintain and some kind of backsliding occurs.  What usually derails my dieting attempts around this time of year are Valentine’s Day and Easter.  Yeah, that may seem a little silly upon first reading, but it’s always been my downfall.  The abundance of chocolate hearts and  chocolate rabbits and mini-eggs and all things Cadbury and Ferraro Rocher  for two, sometimes, three solid months is my undoing.  This year will be different, because I have all you people to ‘fess up to if I backslide into a vat of chocolate.  

But I’m optimistic.  For nearly two weeks, I have prepared every meal that has crossed my lips.  I have gotten up early to eat breakfast before work (which is totally paying off in more ways than one:  I haven’t been late to work since I started this whole thing.  That in itself is friggin’ huge!  Seriously, I’m chronicly late), I have brought my lunch to work everyday, and I have almost entirely cut out added sugar from my diet.  Usually by day 3, I’m tired of meal planning and cooking and grocery shopping and I think thoughts like, “Well, you can have a double cheeseburger from McDonald’s, you just have to count the points.”  Which, technically is true.  But I can’t just stop at a double cheeseburger.  I’ll also get a large order of fries, a McChicken sandwich, and for dessert:  a couple of apple pies or a hot fudge sundae.  I am addicted to food.  I never labeled my relationship with food as addiction, until I started watching A&E’s Intervention. 

If you’ve ever watched the show, then I’m sure you’ve heard the language addicts use to describe their addictions.  Things like:

“I think about it all the time.”

“Even while I’m doing a hit, I’m thinking about scoring my next hit.”

“I know that if I keep living my life like this, that it will kill me.  But I can’t stop.”   

I can’t remember which episode I was watching, but I remember the realization that I was an addict washing over me.  Okay, I realize that my addiction to food isn’t necessarily on par with someone else’s addiction to heroine…I mean I’m not going to get arrested for buying and eating a bag of peanut M&M’s.  But the same kind of compulsive behavior, and the same kind of obsessive thoughts are there.  My drug of choice just happens to be legal and necessary to life. 

Speaking of reality shows…I watched the Biggest Loser last night, and I’ve gotta say, I’m not diggin’ the teasers that give away who is going to be up for elimination.  I am really enjoying this season though.  Even with the whole “Joelle Controversy,” it’s far less infuriating than last season’s Vile Vicky and Fraidy Brady-the Pussy Whipped Husband, Heba the Horrible and her loyal sidekick Tweedle-Dum.  One of the reasons why I like this show so much (besides seeing Bob Harper all yummy looking), is that it’s not all about game-play.  The contestants, typically, want to be there to lose weight not to just win lots of money.  Dangling that prize money is a great incentive, sure.  But the focus of the show is the weight loss and lifestyle change. 

I don’t even dislike Joelle anymore.  I am glad that she finally found the motivation that she’s been lacking this whole time.  And I’m glad that she won’t die at the hands of Carla. ;)  Dan and Dave…well, the correct decision was made with regards to them.  Dave is kind of a putz and didn’t deserve to remain at the ranch and squander a gift he didn’t even want. 

Well, apparently food isn’t the only thing I’m addicted to!

Later, Extra Lusties!

 

My Big Fat Life Story January 26, 2009

Filed under: family matters — thedoublelifeofelle @ 11:54 am
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I have been fat my whole life.  Perhaps there were a few brief periods in middle school and high school where I could have passed for “slightly overweight,” but those moments were fleeting, and went quietly by, under-appreciated by yours truly.   As a young child, I was unaware of my weight problem.  Those years were the best.  I can still kind of remember what it was like not obsessing about my weight or constantly comparing my body with the bodies of my peers.  Those blissfully ignorant years came to a screeching hault one day when I was prancing around my house in my bathing suit, preparing for a day of swimming in the neighbor’s pool.

“I see you’re bringing your inner-tube with you to the pool,” my father said.

“Huh?” I tilted my head, baffled.

“Your inner-tube,” my father made some sort of sign language to indicate the lower abdomen. 

“Oh.” I looked down at myself and for the first time I saw the baby fat my dad was referring to. 

And that wasn’t the last time Dad felt the need to make me painfully aware of my extra padding.  By the time I was in the second grade, I was horribly self-conscious of my weight.  I didn’t want to wear shorts because I thought my thighs were too monstrous.  One day in my second grade class, every student had to be weighed by the teacher.  I’m honestly not sure why…probably for some sort of public school statistic thing.  My teacher was extraordinarily nice and didn’t make me feel ashamed at all when I weighed in at a hefty 90lbs.  I cried all the way home from school that day. 

After that day, my father would sometimes tease me when we were in the car going to school.

“You know, everyone has to get weighed at school today.”  My dad would say as he peaked at me sitting in the passenger seat while he was driving.

“No!  Daddy, I don’t want to go to school today!”  I would instantly burst into tears and demand he turn the car around.  Only when I was almost utterly hysterical would he admit that he was only “joking.” 

My father never let up on me about my weight.  And somehow my mother never managed to tell him to shut the fuck up and stop teasing their young impressionable daughter.  Don’t get me wrong…I love both my parents dearly, but they totally dropped the ball on that whole “help your daughter develop good self-esteem” thing.  During my hormonally-raging, angsty teenage days, my father would frequently tell me that I had an “inferiority complex” when I was being vocally down on myself.  Gee, I wonder why.  During this time I was prescribed anti-depressants.  They made me feel like the walking dead, and I decided that my depression felt better than numbness and stopped taking the pills a few months later.

I met the man that I would later marry when I was 15 years old and he was 19.  We dated (very chastely!) throughout my high school years, and as soon as I graduated high school, I moved to the city where he lived.  After a year of living together, things started to fall apart.  Honestly, I think we were just too young and dumb and unprepared for the kind of struggles we would face.  I was depressed and self-medicated with food.   My weight was out of control.  When I graduated high school, I weighed about 220 lbs.  Pretty chubby, but I was active and healthy.  By the end of that first year, I weighed 270 lbs.  Sexy Boyfriend and I went “on a break,” and I moved back in with my parents. 

I hadn’t really noticed my 50-pound weight gain until my parents bought  me clothes for my birthday.  Every frumpy blouse, every gawd-awful dress, every single item of clothing they bought for me was about two sizes too big!  This made me realize that my parents, who had barely seen me over the past year, had noticed that I gained a lot of weight and assumed that I had gained a lot of clothing sizes too.  Which wasn’t true.  When I graduated high school, I wore around a size 14/16 to around an 18/20.  After gaining 50lbs I wore an 18/20 and occassionally a 22/24.  The clothes I received from my parents all had 4XL tags on them. 

I can just see my parents in the clothing store trying to decide what size to get for their puffed-up daughter.

“Well, she was an XL when she graduated last year.  And she must have put on at least a hundred pounds…” I can hear my mother musing out loud.

I see my father picking up the biggest, most circus tent-like garment he can find, pulling it taut at the waist, and nodding his head, “Yeah, she’s about this big now.”

As sad as it is, I think my mother was secretly happy about my weight gain, because it meant that my father wouldn’t be  making as many remarks about her weight anymore.  (Oh, yeah, have I mentioned that  both my parents are really overweight?)

After the clothes incident, I decided to lose some poundage.  I cut out soda from my diet, and I started jogging.  Yeah, that’s right, my fat ass got out there and started jogging.  I lost about 40 lbs.  I was going to college, working, dating and doing a little growing up.  But…there was something missing.

A couple of years later, Sexy Boyfriend and I started talking again.  We hashed out all of our old problems:  I was too needy.  He was too emotionally distant.  We made fresh promises to each other and decided to try again.  And it’s worked.  It probably didn’t hurt that by this time he was counseling psychologically screwed up adolescents.  And let’s face it folks, that’s what I was (am?).

Sexy Boyfriend became Sexy Husband in 2006 and we have been loving every minute of marriage.  I have gained 30 lbs since I got married and 70 lbs since SH and I got back together.  I’m (obviously) not one of those people that loses weight when she’s sad or loses weight when she’s happy.  When I’m sad, I eat.  When I’m happy, I eat.  When I’m any kind of emotion, I acknowledge it with food.

Re-reading this post, it seems like my parents are terrible.  They aren’t.  I think just about everybody’s folks messed up in some way…like a son who’s pushed too hard to succeed at sports or a daughter who gets punished if she doesn’t bring home straight A+’s.  I had it out with both my parents (individually) not that long ago, but that’s a story for another day.

So if you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading.  I hope everyone had a great weekend and good luck with this week’s challenges!

 

The Weigh-In and Week One in Review January 23, 2009

Filed under: goals,weigh-in — thedoublelifeofelle @ 6:13 am
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The results are in:  I posted a 4.6 lb (2.1 Kg) loss this week!  That puts my current weight at 296 lbs, with 129 lbs to lose to reach my ultimate goal weight of 167 lbs.  This week has been great.  I have been feeling positive and have kept on top of tracking my food and points.  I have tried out a couple of new recipes and they were fantastic.  Eating breakfast has been much easier than I initially thought.  My favorite breakfast is Kashi GoLean Crunch with soy milk and blueberries.  Yum!  It’s a little on the sweet side, but soy milk and Kashi are the only foods in my diet with any added sugar, so I don’t feel so bad.  Now that I’ve gotten this first loss under my belt (out from under my belt, I should say),  I would like to set some short-term goals for myself. 

  1. Lose 10% of my starting weight.  This is one of the first goals you are encouraged to reach for in WeightWatchers, and it’s a good one.  All of those wonderful health benefits of losing weight show measurable results after losing 10%.  It can help lower your cholesterol and reduce your risk of diabetes.  So this goal is the one I’m going to focus on for now.  After this week’s weight-loss I have 25.4 lbs to go!    
  2. Eliminate junk food/fast food completely for 4 weeks.  This is a tough one, but I really need to buckle down and get in the habit of preparing all of my meals at home with wholesome ingredients.  This is what I have been doing since Weigh-In #1, and it’s been great.  I haven’t had any cravings and I haven’t felt unsatisfied (granted, I’m also not PMSing now!).  You know that common belief that to make something a habit, you should do it for 30 days?  Well, I’m hoping that this holds true.  And I’m not saying that I’m never going to eat a double-cheeseburger again or swear off peanut M&M’s for life.  I just want preparing dinner each night and bringing my lunch to work to be as habitual as ordering take-out was before.  And  in order for me to get some momentum going, I need to make some strict “no tolerance” rules for myself.  Plus I need to have some practice with that whole portion control thing before I even think of looking at a bag of chocolates.   
  3. Buy those workout DVDs that have been in my Amazon.com shopping cart for a few weeks now and start using them.  The DVDs that I’m thinking of purchasing are yoga and pilates workouts for the Extra Lusty.  I have tried the “Skinny Bitches” yoga/pilates DVDs and I get so frustrated with my limited flexibility, and even if I do the modified versions of the exercises I still can’t maintain proper form.  Let’s not forget the fact that I have giant boobs and fat rolls to contend with!  It’s hard to do the pilates “100” when you’re being suffocated by your own tits!  From what I hear, it’s not that the workouts are “easy,” it’s that they take into account the Extra Lusty physique.   The workouts that have been recommended to me are  Yoga: Just My Size with Megan Garcia  and Look Great, Feel Great: Plus Size Pilates.  I know that in order to really blast the calories, I need to do aerobic activity and strength training, and I do intend on getting myself into a routine very soon.  I really want to try the yoga and pilates first though to increase my flexibility and hopefully avoid those injuries I’m so prone to when I go balls-to-the-wall. 

I have had a great week and I am loving connecting with all of you fabulous people out there.  I hope everyone is staying positive.  Have a great weekend!

 

yeah, i can! January 21, 2009

Filed under: cha-cha-cha-changes — thedoublelifeofelle @ 11:32 am
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It seems that 2009 is the year for change, both on the global scale and the bathroom scale.  I have been a little dewy-eyed since MLK Day and it culminated in an all out sob-fest yesterday.  Unfortunately, I was working  and was unable to watch President Barack Obama being sworn in, but naturally, I watched it on YouTube when I got home (such a sign of the times!).  He gave his speech on my laptop while I chopped garlic and shallots.  I sauteed as he spoke of sacrifice and wept to see the masses covering the mall as the Civil Rights movement came full circle.  Regardless of your politics, history was made yesterday, and people of all colors, creeds, and ages are coming together like never before.

It may sound a little corny, but this past election year, and Obama’s campaign in particular, has shaken a lot of the cynicism from my nature.  The world seems brand new and the future seems brighter.  The phrase I’ve heard over and over since November 4, 2008 is “anything is possible.” 

Okay, this isn’t meant to be a political post.  I’m just sharing with you how this historic event has injected some positivity into my usually pessimistic attitude.  And with Weigh-In day being tomorrow, I need to keep my mind in the positive realm. 

Not only was Tuesday filled with media coverage of Inauguration Day, it was also Biggest Loser night!  The contestants on this show (all the seasons, not just this one) have cajones of STEEL!  Showing all your fat rolls on national television, working out and throwing up, and let’s not forget:  being WEIGHED on a huge scale for the world to see!  This show sounds just like my worst nightmare, except the contestants are clothed and they aren’t walking into the lunch room of my old high school.

The candidness of the contestants has given me a little push to post some pictures of myself on this little blog (while still cleverly disguising my identity).  Plus I think that making a record of my progress will give me something to look back on during those less positive moods that I am SURE will catch up with me.  Hopefully I can whip up something over the next week or two, so keep an eye out.

I will be weighing in tomorrow and posting my results on Friday.  And I would just like to say thanks to those of you who gave me comment love.  I really appreciate it, and I enjoy reading your blogs!

 

the family that weighs together…ends up at each other’s throats January 19, 2009

I haven’t really told anybody in my “real life” that I’m “on a diet,”  for several reasons.  Mostly because (I hate to admit this, but afterall these are my secret confessions) I am afraid of failing.  Let’s face it, I have been down the dieting path before with other people witnessing me lose a few pounds then gorge myself into oblivion come Easter.  While this time I have a different kind of determination, I am not yet ready to explain myself to my family, friends, and co-workers.  Plus I don’t want them feeling obligated to comment on any lost lbs or if my clothes are fitting loosely.  When I do start losing weight, I want people to notice on their own.  That would be much more motivating than if they were all examining me under a microscope everyday. 

I have managed to tell a few people, including my sister-in-law.  We are about as close as real sisters.  She and I made a run to the market on Saturday and she surprised me by saying that she, too, had signed up for Weight Watchers Online.  SIL isn’t nearly as overweight as I am, but she has a few pounds to lose.  I told her that I was cutting down on all that prepackaged, processed, sugar-filled junk food that was staring us in the face at the supermarket.  Her approach consists more of frozen ready-meals, 100 calorie packs, Lunchables, and prepackaged pudding–so pretty much the opposite of my “diet.”  I try not to judge, but I can’t help it.  I definitely don’t say too much, because I’m a good 100 lbs heavier than her and what right do I have telling her how to eat.  Hopefully though, my healthy food choices will pay off and maybe influence her to make better decisions.

The first time I joined WW (the actual meetings), I joined with SIL.  I thought it would be great to have someone to go with, someone to share support with.  Wroooonnng!  The first week I spent counting points like a Nazi, eating loads of fruits and vegetables, etc.  SIL spent it eating things out of a box.  That first weigh-in she lost more than 10 lbs.  I lost 3.5.  I was absolutely devastated.  I couldn’t even be happy about my own loss.  I was pissed and wondering why I bothered to buy healthy, wholesome ingredients and painstakingly measured and prepared everything, when apparently the easiest way to lose weight was to let Lean Cuisine cook all your meals for you.  That weigh-in pretty much did me in, and after about 8 weeks of paying 13 bucks a pop to stand in line, get weighed, and listen to other people gripe about food I stopped going.  SIL and I stopped going together after 2 or 3 weeks, because her consistently high weight loss numbers and my paltry 1, 2, or even 0 lbs every week wasn’t very motivating.  Her smug attitude and her little hints that “some people just don’t work as hard as others and it shows on the scale” didn’t help things either.  I hated myself for not losing.  I hated myself for being so jealous that she was.  And I really hated the fact that my choice to eat so healthy didn’t pay off immediately.  It’s not that I didn’t want her to achieve her weight loss goals, because I did want her to find success.  I just wanted her to achieve them my way.  I’m a Leo, what can I say. ;)   

Now that my focus is not only losing poundage, but living a healthier lifestyle, low weigh-in numbers aren’t going to discourage me as much as they did the last time.  Slow and steady is the best way to lose, and if I would have stuck with the WW plan the first time, all of those 1-2 lb /week losses would have already put me at my goal weight by now.  Even though I have this mature new focus, that doesn’t mean I’m going to be exchanging stats with SIL.  I don’t want to risk sounding judgmental and bossy.  I think the best way for us to support each other in our endeavors is to just maintain our close relationship.  We hang out all the time and gab about everything from the inconsequential to the seriously emotional.  As much fun as we have together, it’s taken us a while to figure out that delicate balance between just enough time spent together and way too much.  And I think “dieting together” would totally cross that line, as it did last time around.   Although, she has asked if we could cook dinner together once or twice a week.  I have no problem with that, but I’m pretty sure she won’t be interested in anything I cook, and I definitely don’t want to eat a box of reduced fat Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Powder.  Perhaps I can think of this opportunity as a challenge to find a recipe that she’ll eat without picking out half the ingredients.         

Interestingly enough, my mother-in-law seems to be having the same reaction she did the last time SIL and I joined WW.  I happen to work with my MIL ( a thing I do not suggest doing), and the other day at work she had a giant package of peanut butter cups she was eating one by one.  One of our co-workers was going to lunch and asked if either of us wanted something.  I declined saying that I had brought my own lunch from home.  After our co-worker left, MIL asked if I wanted a peanut butter cup (she totally did this because I NEVER bring my lunch and she knew that since I had, I was on a diet.  this is not me being paranoid, this is how MIL operates…TRUST ME!).

“No, thanks,” I said not worrying about her agenda.

“Are you dieting, Elle?”  she asked already knowing the answer. 

“I’m cutting out junk food.”  

“Well, good for you.” 

She then left her open package of peanut butter cups at my desk–ALL DAY–and stopped by every hour or so to eat one!   She also went to McDonald’s and got a Quarter-Pounder meal, and ate it in front of me.  Hello?!  Sabotage, much??  I was good though.  I ate my meal from home and barely looked at the PB cups.  But I could still smell those fries.  Mmmmm.

She did the same thing last time.  MIL loves junk food, but I’ve never seen her eat so much as when someone in the family is dieting.  SIL asked her to join WW with us when we first joined back in 2006 and MIL got pretty angry.  I’m not sure if she feels like she’ll be left behind in Fatland if we succeed,  if she’s just angry at herself for not doing something about her excess weight, or maybe she just feels ganged up on. 

Of course, Sexy Husband knows about my diet.  He’s tall and good-looking and thin and has never once made me feel bad about my size.  Not one stray remark, not one “are you sure you should eat that?”, not one single word about my double-digit dress size.   He is unbelievably supportive in everything I do and has been a great cheerleader so far.  He is in the “adolescent psychology” field and knows a thing or two about low self-esteem.   I have to admit, sometimes I think he’s too good to be true.  I’m afraid that one of these days, he’ll wake up next to me and realize that he can do so much better.  Hot, skinny girls flirt with him all the time.  They see me and all my bulk and can’t possibly imagine I’m with him.  They just assume I’m some kind of lesbian comrade.  Either my husband is really good at checking out girls on the sly, or he just doesn’t do it, because I’ve never caught him eyeing anyone but me.

So right now, my support system includes SH (sexy husband), myself, this little ol’ blog, and in a vague sense, SIL.  I’m hoping that as time passes, I can widen that circle and not feel the need to keep SIL at arm’s length. I’m also hoping that MIL will stop trying to derail my efforts and be inspired by SIL’s and my progress instead of being upset and offended.

 

me vs. the scale…a truce of sorts January 16, 2009

Filed under: weigh-in — thedoublelifeofelle @ 1:17 am
Tags: , , , , ,

This morning, I woke up bright and early (not my thing, I assure you!) and hopped on my fancy scale (again, not something I normally do).  The giant LCD screen read 300.6 lbs.  Holy thunder thighs, Batman!  But you know what?  I did not have a melt down.  I did not stare at the scale in bewilderment.  I did not relive all those nights alone on my couch surrounded by take-out containers, candy wrappers, and empty ice cream tubs.  I did not chuck the damn thing  out the window.  And perhaps, more importantly, I didn’t let that number ruin my day.  Actually, I barely thought about it.  I used to be terrified of the scale.  The thought of stepping on one has kept me out of the Doctor’s office more times than I would like to admit.  Today, though, I called a truce.  Today, the scale became a trusted ally in this whole new challenge.  The numbers that will flash on the screen in the coming weeks will keep me accountable and help me measure my progress. 

I know I have a lot of weight to lose, but I have a plan.  Plus, this isn’t just about losing pounds, or wearing a bikini, or being on the cover of Cosmo.  I have made a conscious decision to change the course of my life.  My life is going to turn out completely different because of the steps I’m taking today.  The enormity of that far surpasses the amount of poundage I have to lose. 

Trust me, though…I know that I won’t always have these days full of confidence and clarity.  I know myself well enough to expect many, many emotional ups and downs.  But I’m already ahead of myself.  I’ve made a list of some of the challenges and potential setbacks that may trigger disaster and how I plan to cope with them or avoid them all together at least some of the time.

1. My habit of skipping breakfast– I know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, blah blah blah.  But I have never been much of a breakfast eater.  I never got into the habit as a child, and as a perpetually tardy adult, I tend to be rushing around in the morning readying myself for work instead of slowing down to eat a meal.  Since I’m not a morning person to begin with, you can see how eating breakfast is quite the challenge.  My plan is to make and freeze a big batch of healthy smoothies so I can have a ready supply of a decent breakfasts that I can guzzle in the car on my commute to work.  I know it’s not a perfect plan, but my hope is that all of this healthy living will positively affect my sleeping patterns.  I’m not saying I’ll magically morph into an Eager Morning Beaver, but perhaps I’ll be able to hit that snooze button less and have the time to eat a sit-down breakfast. 

2. My habit of inhaling my food– Everybody knows that eating slower is a great way to savor a meal and to make sure you don’t overeat because of that whole “brain/stomach signals” delay.  I WOOF down my food and before you know it, I’ve had seconds and thirds and end up unbuttoning my pants because I’m uncomfortably full.  Then I’m totally guilt-ridden, decide I’m absolutely worthless and since I’ve fucked up already I might as well go the whole hog and eat a box of cookies.  This time around, I’m going to make a real effort to eat S L O W L Y and wait a few minutes before having second helpings.  I am going to try and be mindful of my hunger level and learn how to recognize true satisfaction– not too full, and not too hungry. 

3. Exercising– Believe it or not, I don’t hate exercise.  I actually quite enjoy working up a sweat and the burning and fatigued muscles the day after.  But every time I try and lose weight, I get way too hardcore about exercising and end up overdoing it.  I get so tired and sore, that I can’t keep up a regular routine or I manage to injure myself and am forced to not work out for a few days and never jump back on the activity wagon.  This time, however,  I’m starting out slow.  My focus for the first few weeks is just going to be being more active in my daily life.  Then I’m going to add 15-20 minutes of walking a few times a week and build slowly from there.  I will NOT try and do too much too fast. 

4. The discouragement that comes when the number on the scale doesn’t reflect the effort– This is a tough one.  The couple of days leading up to a Weigh In day are always full of so much anticipation.  I ALWAYS expect to lose, and when I don’t, or heaven forbid, I GAIN, the negative self-talk takes over.  It spirals out of control and faster than you can say “Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough,” I’m in my pjs on the couch with a half-eaten carton of ice cream.  My tactics this time, include focusing on non-scale victories like eating well all week, exercising an extra few minutes, planning and preparing great meals all week, etc.  Those small victories will not go unnoticed this time.   

I am, by nature, pretty pessimistic.  But that’s part of the reason I took the time to think about the things that tend to derail my efforts.  I want to be prepared and this blog is part of that preparation.  Being able to type out all of my fears, accomplishments, motivations, and setbacks and put them into perspective will hopefully provide that extra bit of self-examination and accountability that will keep me on this path. 

So, Scale…it’s me and you.  You’re not going to be the only thing I use to measure my success, and you’re not the bane of my existence anymore.