Thursday, May 24, 2012

I Said No To A Cupcake Today

There were donuts at work yesterday. I had to walk by them twice. I did not even lift the top of the box to see what kind they were. I just kept on walking. That's not the first time I've done that this year, but it's still special.

Today one of the IT guys brought in huge chocolate-with-cream-cheese-icing cupcakes. He was practically shoving them down my throat and I kept trying to say no. But I was wavering. When I asked what the little drawings on the cupcakes were (they looked like either light bulbs or hot air balloons) he explained that they were supposed to be jars or vials or something. He had ordered them for the Diablo 3 party that his brother was supposed to have, but canceled. So the cupcakes had been in the freezer at the bakery for the past week at least. Until he picked them up and brought them to work.

I am not going to waste good points on bad cupcakes. I have my standards, dang it.

Sure enough, one of my work-friends IMed just a little after this exchange saying they were stale and gross.


There is place in my diet for cupcakes and cookies and birthday cake. That's the beauty of Weight Watchers or any other calorie counting, non-restrictive plan. But not everyday.  And I only spend my points on the goodies if they are in fact, good.

That's a funny thing about making the lifestyle change to healthier eating. Your taste buds really do adjust. Simpler, less high fat/high calorie foods really do start to taste a bit better. The big pay-off, besides the obvious health/fitness, is that when you do have a treat it tastes so much better than it did in the past. Because it's just that, a treat. Not just a part of your everyday. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

What I Typically Eat During the Week

Ok, first off...I know breakfast is the best time of the day to eat your carbs. However I have realized that unless I have a protein-rich breakfast I am going to be starving by lunch time. Snacking a lot does not work for me for several reasons so I go with what keeps me full the longest.

At least three days out of the week I have four slices of original (not the thick-cut) Oscar Meyer Center Cut Bacon. That's only two points of bacony-goodness. With it, I'll have three egg whites (one point). A few days ago I started making a pancake out of 2 1/2 tablespoons of Arbonne Chocolate Protein Powder, one egg, 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder, one tsp of olive oil, and one tblsp of water. This makes a four point pancake, on which I then add two tablespoons of sugar-free syrup for another point. For five points, I can satisfy a craving for carbs without actually eating them.

If I don't have time to make my precious, precious bacon I'll have an 8oz protein shake made with milk (five points) or a Clif bar. Occasionally, I'll have oatmeal. I wish I could love oatmeal as much as I should, but I just don't.

I try to stay away from processed/preservative-laden/can't read the ingredient list foods as much as possible. I rarely have them at breakfast and even rarer at dinner. But I have a hard time completely eliminating them from my weekday lunches. My typical lunch at work looks like this:

That's some salad greens with mushrooms and cucumber, a bit of the Salad Spritz for dressing, a Mini-Babybell Cheese, some grapes and a Lean Pocket.

I'll sub in a pita with a low-sodium ham or turkey, or tuna onto the salad or on some whole wheat bread...but more often than not I go with the Lean Pocket. As a Food Addict, finishing a meal feeling satisfied (notice I didn't say "full." Two very different concepts) is incredibly important for me. If I go too long without eating something that leaves me feeling satisifed, then I set myself up for a binge. 
So, I sacrifice my attempts at clean eating a bit in the effort of not losing it completely.

With my lunch I drink water, Sobe zero calorie flavored waters or Sparkling Ice. It's not naturally flavored like Sobe, (splenda, I believe) which stinks...but I have to mix it up every once in awhile.

Afternoon Snack
On the way home from work I usually drink a bottle of water and eat a handful of baby carrots. This goes along way towards keeping me from raiding the cabinets while I am waiting for dinner. If I really can't wait, I usually keep the 90 calorie Fiber One bars around for an emergency. 

Lots of stir-fries! We used to make a tofu stir-fry at least once a week. Super filling and yummy but crazy low in calories. And then I found out that soy and thyroid issues are not a good mix. I have Hasimoto's and had half of my thyroid removed several years ago, when I grew an orange sized...thing. What is it with me and fruit-sized growths? Anyhoodles, I'm on Synthroid, so no more soy stuff for me. So we just use chicken and shrimp now. Lots of broccolli, zucchinni, onion, mushrooms whatevers in the fridge, really.

We also often sautee Tilapia or make the old baked-chicken-breasts-in-mushroom soup and serve that with Jasmine or Basmati rice and some sort of green vegetable. Lately, we've really been digging the Banging Good Shrimp from the Skinny Taste site

That recipe introduced me to Sriracha and has changed my life. I should have listened to the Oatmeal sooner. His homage to Sriracha.

Friday, May 11, 2012

What I'm Gaining By Losing

I can get on my horse from the ground with ease.

It's somehow much easier to swing my leg over my motorcycle.

My bath towels fit all the way around my body.

My everyday, chronic back pain is completely gone.

I can shop in any store.

I can wear shorts and belts.

I fit in those molded plastic patio chairs without my fat spilling out the sides or fear of breaking them.

I don't have to order extra wide boots to fit over my calf.

I can run from the barn to the house for something without getting winded, same goes for running upstairs at work.

I don't have to worry about weight limits stopping me from participating in certain activities. (zip lines, horseback tours, etc)

I don't fear not fitting properly on amusement park rides.

I can jump and dance around with the kids at work without fear of the jiggling traumatizing them.

Airplane seats suddenly got a lot bigger.

I don't live in fear of being filmed from behind by a local news crew reporting on the obesity epidemic.

I'm starting to be able to cash the checks  my inner bad-ass has always wanted to write.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

It's Cantaloupe Day!

Today is the first anniversary of the day I decided to get fit. One year ago today I had a hysterectomy and a cantaloupe-sized ovarian cyst removed. The cancer scare alone was enough to have me thinking that I needed to get my act together health-wise. But it wasn't until those first days after surgery when everything clicked. Those of you who have fought food addiction, or any other addiction for that matter, know exactly what I am talking about. You tell yourself every morning that you're going to quit smoking, or eat better, or quit drinking, but until you are truly ready, every day ends the same way. If you are lucky though, one day you become ready...some have to hit their proverbial rock bottom first, some don't. But some way, some how, that click has to happen. No amount of cajoling or lecturing from anyone can force it.

Sitting at home in the week or two after the surgery, I was feeling as weak and worthless as I have ever felt. Though I had been holding on to 250 + lbs for several years, its affects on my life were very gradual. I credit my Eastern European heritage (Strong, like bull) with letting me get away with carrying so much extra weight for so long. However, in the past year or so it had really begun to slow me down and effect what I could or could not do, be it on vacations or in every day life. Pair that with the kick-in-the-ass that major abdominal surgery is, and you had me at my weakest. Then I saw a commercial for Nike or something like it. Just a montage of women running and climbing.


I. Want. That.

Not her body, but the ability. The potential to run and jump and do things...gracefully, effortlessly, and without pain.

And that is what this past year (and the future) is about. It's not about the size of the pants, or if I'm a hot momma. It's about my body working for me, and not against me. I started having dreams about running and climbing. In the dreams, I was light as a feather, yet strong. I was an athlete.

So I started doing Weight Watcher's online and I committed myself to at least 30 minutes of some kind of cardio every day. Variety in my workouts and Adventure Racing keeps me motivated.

As of today, I have lost 65 lbs but I have gained so much more.

Andie Mitchell of the blog, "Can You Stay For Dinner?" did a series of posts about what you gain from losing. It's fantastic. Go read it.

And then come back tomorrow and read my personal version of those sentiments.

Have a great Cantaloupe Day!