Sunday, January 30, 2011

Week 33 - Weigh In - Second Goal Achieved!!!

This week was the week! I did it! I not only hit my 50lbs gone, I exceeded it! I lost 2.6lbs this week, making my total loss 51lbs. I've set my next goal which is another 26lbs. It will be a huge milestone for me as I will be able to bid the 300's goodbye and see the 200's for the first time in probably 14 years! Yes, friends, I've been over 300lbs for close to a decade and a half! I will take another photo today, while I don't think there will be a huge difference between this picture and my last, it's a milestone and it feels like one I should mark with another before and after photo.

Quick Stats:
This week's weight loss - 2.6lbs
Total loss - 51lbs
Next goal - 77lbs

Thursday, January 27, 2011

This Train Don't Stop There Anymore - Unless a Canolli is Involved - Then Yeah, Maybe a Short Stop

Today was a rough day! We had a team building event, which was very nice of the company I work for, but it was NOT weight-loss friendly and pushed my willpower to the absolute max. Knowing that I was going in to face the fire today I started with some whole grain oatmeal (not the packets kind), a cup of blueberries and some light/fat free yogurt. It was a good breakfast, I was satisfied and was hoping it would help when temptation hit. I also drank 32oz of water before 11:30. Again, hoping for the magical "I don't care that there is cake in the room" vibes.

Our event started with lunch. I was able to make great choices, avoid the white pasta with Alfredo sauce and stuck with plenty of veggies, some chicken breast and a nice salad with my dressing on the side to just dip my fork in for a little taste. Win! I did it!

Then, the cake was passed around. Uggg! I avoided the situation entirely by just leaving the room while cake was enjoyed. Honestly, it was easier for me to just walk away than sit there with the constant nagging of "OMG that cake looks good."

What felt like only a few minutes after cake was finished, popcorn and movie candies were rolled out. Snow caps, Goobers, Rasinettes, Milk Duds -  you name it, it was there to be consumed! A movie started and for a while I was able to ignore the smell of fresh popped popcorn filling the room. Eventually though I did decide I would have a half a bag (they were the small, personal sized bags that hold about 2 cups of popcorn). I stuck to my guns and only had a half of bag - a cup. It was so fresh, so crisp, I really enjoyed it. I made sure to grab my phone, log in to my Weight Watchers etools and track the unexpected treat.

So far, sounds ok, right? Unfortunately, about 3pm is when I went down hill. I avoided and avoided the slow train of food that equated to my own personal torture. But, during an afternoon break I broke and had to have a canolli. Fortunately, it was yogurt filled rather than pudding/custard filled; however, it started something I wish hadn't happened. I didn't just consume one canolli, I had THREE!

Oh how I wish I had stuck with my original plan and taken in my bag of fruit and cheese to have as my afternoon snack. If I had done that, while I may still have had the one canolli, I don't think I would have let my guard down enough to cave to three of the delicious little tempt-lets!

To compound this cluster of an eating day, I didn't make it to the gym or get my walk in this evening. My plan for today was to get up early enough to walk my son to school, which is slightly over 2 miles round trip. But, naturally, I woke up too late to do that. So then my plan was to come home after class tonight, put on my workout clothes and go to the gym. Yeah, that didn't happen either. Then I said I'd just walk my treadmill, but no matter how much I thought about how much I NEEDED to do it, especially on a three canolli day, I just couldn't muster up the energy to do it. I immediately put on my nightgown.

The fact is I will always be tired while working full-time and going to school full-time; that shouldn't be an excuse to skip my walks. I need to re-commit to either getting up early and doing it, or doing it as soon as I get home from school in the evenings. This is my third week back in class since winter break and I need to get my routine down. Work Monday through Friday 9am-5pm, school Monday through Thursday 6pm-10pm. Mornings really are the option that makes the most sense.

Tomorrow, I'm committing to waking up and walking. I don't have school tomorrow night so I plan to try to double dip and get an additional walk in.

So, that was my day.

How do you handle events where you experience the slow train of torture otherwise known as food? Does anyone have any tips other than biting nails, chugging water and abstaining?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Doughnuts, cookies and cakes oh my!

I'm home sick again today. However, I've been laying around more today than I did yesterday, meaning, I didn't get my walk in. I really don't think I will today. I'm just not feeling up to it and I think I should just listen to my body. Yesterday's walk wasn't over-tasking but I have more chest congestion today so felt it wise to just rest.

While laying here I've had some time to catch up on some of my friends in between catnaps. I have a friend that is also battling food addiction. He has done an amazing job, losing a great deal of weight, working out regularly, hitting the pavement and RUNNING for his life. Recently he RAN a 5k. I admire him, I am inspired by him, he IS a winner!

Recently, he has struggled more and more with binging. He has made progress and is becoming more and more transparent with his binges. He tracks them, which is one of the hardest things to do after wards, second only to TELLING someone about it. He's not just telling someone, he shares his binge with the group. This level of honesty, this amount of truth, with not only others but yourself, lends itself to true recovery of this addiction. Let me tell you, it is one of the hardest things to tell friends, relatives, ANYONE for that matter, that you just downed an entire box of doughnut holes (one of my binges from months ago).

What really drives a binge? What is it that clicks in the brain that makes us believe we want a full dozen donuts or an entire bag of chips topped off with a can chocolate fudge icing? This isn't driven by hunger - there is something much deeper pushing the compulsive eater to go on a bender.

I think it may be a combination of things for me. If I get extremely busy (I'm always busy with my family, my husband's illness, work, school, weight watchers, working out, etc.) but there are times where the load is more than normal. At those times, I feel the urge to run through McDonald's and order one of everything! (Ok, that was slightly exaggerated, but not by much!)  Additionally, when I'm unorganized, my house is a mess, perhaps my kitchen has dishes stacked in the sink, maybe my office looks like it was hit by a Category 5 hurricane - during those times of chaos my food mentality is also chaotic. Naturally, as you would expect, bad news and excessive stress also trigger binges, although I seem to be working through those a little better lately.

I would like to say I've learned to keep the perfect house, remain organized at all times, never have last night's dinner dishes in my sink the next morning, always put away everything after I finish studying and file all the important papers immediately - but alas, no, I've not yet reached June Cleaver status when it comes to housekeeping and organization. I'm trying to allow myself to let go of some of these self imposed expectations. My house will never be perfect, especially when I only spend about 8 hours per day here, with exception of the weekends when I'm buried in books. These unrealistic expectations are the same as wanting the "perfect" week on plan and when it isn't a perfect week, throwing in the towel completely. NOTHING IS PERFECT!

What I am working on is maintaining organization when it comes to my food. I track every day, if I ate it, I track it and prefer if everything is tracked BEFORE I eat it - then it's just a plan, a to do list per se, of the foods I need to consume for the day. I have forced myself into a habit that if it isn't in the tracker, it CANNOT cross my lips. That helps keep me on track most of the time. But, there are times when the addiction relapse wants to take hold. I honestly don't know how to battle that other than using distractions and even then it sometimes doesn't work.

Each day is another day fighting a battle against addiction. Friend, I hope you read this. I want you to know that you inspire me. I hope to have the success you've had and you will continue to have. I believe over the next few months we both will be celebrating major milestones, crossing off tens of pounds. We can and will do this! I believe in you and I need you to walk this road with me.

I found this link regarding Binge Eating Disorders and found it very informative.

Friends, if you are fighting a compulsive eating disorder, what do you do to avoid binges? How long has it been since you really went on a binge? Please tell me about times when you were tempted to binge, overcame the urge and successfully avoided it. What did you do during those times to be successful?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I watched the first episode of A&E's series "Heavy" which is about morbidly obese individuals changing their lives and being followed for the first six months. My fear from the commercials is that it would be another "The Biggest Loser" type show, and most readers know my thoughts on that little nugget of television entertainment.  After watching the first show, I must say I'm pleasantly surprised! It is much more like "Intervention" than "The Biggest Loser."

This first show followed John and Jodi. Both are individuals I can certainly relate. John started the show well over 600lbs, Jodi at 367lbs. The first thing that jumped out at me is I was heavier than Jodi when I started my journey!

This show addresses the fact that battling and recovering from food addiction is much like drug addiction and it is refreshing to see that aspect exposed. It addresses many of the issues that are not addressed in the current pop culture diet craze. I appreciate that a television show is talking about these issues without degrading the individuals they are showing. Yes, there is some tough love provided by the trainers, but there wasn't anything belittling or degrading, which is one of the things that has bothered me about "The Biggest Loser." Also, in contrast, it is not about competition and I love that! Losing weight is not about losing more than another person on a similar journey. It's personal. To only reinforce how personal it is, there isn't a giant stage, huge weight displays - it's just a more intimate approach to telling the story of weight loss for the super obese. I love it!

I'm excited to watch this series. It's so uplifting to see these individuals fight to gain control over their lives. I see myself in some of them and that makes me feel good. I do think a personal trainer needs to be in the plan for the near future. I need someone to push me, teach me to do more than just walk. While walking is a fantastic exercise that I will continue to do, I need to start adding to my muscles, letting them burn calories for me and really take this weight loss to the next step. I think I'm ready.

Have you watched this series? What did you think?

Sick Days

I have a cold. It's the first cold I've had in several months. Before I made this change in my life I suffered colds and sinus junk from October through April. It seemed I was ALWAYS sick. What I've found since working on getting healthy is my illnesses are fewer and I have longer spans of wellness. I don't seem to catch anything and everything anymore, which is fantastic.

So, today I'm having a day of rest. (I love that laptops can travel with you from the office to the recliner to the bed. I wouldn't trade my laptop for all the desktop pc's in the world! But, I digress.)  Oh yes, my day of rest . . . I really don't want my day of rest to turn into a day of munching, sleeping and virtually no movement.  I need to pick my oldest son up from school around 3pm today. The school is only a mile from my house so I've decided rather than drive it I'll go ahead and walk it. Two miles round trip isn't strenuous and may do me some good. It also helps me get some activity in while fulfilling something I have to do anyway. I don't feel well, but that's no reason to not spend the 45 minutes or so walking, getting some fresh air and enjoying the time to just think.

I was a bit later than usual getting breakfast but I did finally eat it. I had two pieces of dry, reduced calorie, wheat toast, a boiled egg and an orange. I figure better late than never! I have no idea why I craved the toast dry, I just did, so that's what I had. I normally use Brummel & Brown (margarine made from yogurt) but I just wasn't feeling it today. I'm going to focus on not munching on comfort foods and stick to my normal routine as much as possible. Sick days seem to be more difficult to maintain the normal routines of eating well but isn't it when we are ill that it is of utmost importance?

What do you do on sick days to maintain your healthy routine? Do you exercise?

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The road is long and sometimes all that matters is that you're on it

On a journey of 10,000 steps are any of the steps any more important than the others? I'm quite sure the guy on the road celebrates certain milestones, but is that single step any higher in value to the entire journey than say the 10 steps that it took to get there? No. Not really. The journey would not have been complete without all of the steps combined.

I keep this thought in mind today. My weight stayed the exact same. I didn't lose. I didn't gain. I just stayed the same. This is where struggle lies in weight loss. Sure, it's fantastic and even "easy" at times when the weight drops off in pounds by the week. Where the endurance comes in, where the willpower comes in, is when you do all the right things and the numbers just don't show it.

It's OK. At least it wasn't a gain. As cliche as using the word "journey" is, it honestly is a journey and there will be times where the unexplainable happens. I can't explain why I didn't see a loss. I measured all of my "right" foods. I exercised. I tracked. I drank my water. I got more sleep. And yes, even after all that, some weeks you just won't see it.

This is where commitment is key. As it would be so easy, after working so hard this week, to throw in the towel for a few days, do whatever it is the "old me" would want to do - which would probably involve large numbers of calories, no exercise and self pity. However, that was the old me. I refuse to succumb to those negative thoughts. I'm going with the mindset that I DID do everything right this week and as a result, the fruits of those efforts WILL show on the scale. Perhaps next week. :)

I don't really have any new goals. I'm going to keep doing what I've been doing. I know it's healthy, I know it's right. It just takes time which is going to pass no matter what I'm doing, so I might as well do all the right things and eventually I will make it to that next milestone.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

T'was the night before weigh in

Tonight is like Christmas Eve all over again. Tomorrow is weigh in and I can't help but wonder if I hit my goal of 50lbs or not. I've been working towards this goal for weeks. My mini-goals of the week were pretty much intact. I ate power foods, some days so much so that I didn't spend my entire daily point allowance. I worked out a total of two and a half hours which is equal to five 30 minute workouts. While those workouts were in the matter of two days - I'll count it as meeting my goal. I drank my water. I made it through a Saturday night without making poor choices, which is a win! So on paper, the week looks great!

However, my home scale is not showing a loss. Now, mind you, I don't usually take my home scale seriously as far as actual weight but for trending purposes, it's usually ok. So, I sit and I wait for tomorrow morning to come.

At the end of the day, tomorrow's weigh in is no more important than those from last month or the month before. If I don't hit the 50lb mark tomorrow, it's ok! I may do it next week, or the week after that. There is no ticking clock saying I need to reach certain milestones within a certain time.

However, I can't help but be excited if it may be tomorrow! We will see!  Regardless of what the scale says, my week was healthy, my choices were right on and I feel great about that!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Powering Up on Power Foods

Every week, or ever other week, we all make approximately 100 different decisions in the matter of an hour or so that are some of the most important decisions of our life - all the items we place in our shopping carts at the grocery store. Months ago, before I made this change in my life, I did not make good choices. Even some choices I thought weren't half bad I have realized weren't great. 

Gradually, my choices have changed from better to even great, as I continue on my Weight Watcher's plan. When I first started, I honestly stocked my freezer with a lot of the Weight Watchers' prepared foods. I ate a lot of processed snacks (fiber bars, 100 calorie packs, etc.). I ate a Weight Watchers frozen dessert every evening. There was NOTHING wrong with this. I lost my first 30lbs or so transitioning my eating habits from junk to healthier junk.

However, I'm happy to report that my shopping list today had ZERO Weight Watchers frozen foods on it. The thing that has helped me the most with this transition, which has been an evolution, is the new PointsPlus plan which launched in late November. With the new plan, Power Foods (marked with a green pyramid in e-tools) are encouraged. They include your fresh fruits and veggies, lean proteins, reduced calorie breads and a few fat free/low fat items. The more Power Foods you include in your daily menu, the more satisfied you are throughout the day and you end up eating healthier (and sometimes even whole) foods.

Last week the meeting topic was Power Foods which came with a challenge - 10 meals of Power Foods throughout the week. Normally I eat quite a few of the green pyramid foods, but I didn't really participate in the challenge last week. 

Today, I sat down and used e-tools to create my shopping list. I'm happy to report that 72 out of the 89 food items purchased are, indeed, Power Foods!

Below is a summary of what I purchased. If you are working on getting healthy, as many are right now, perhaps select a few items from this list and incorporate them into your daily food plan.

Fat Girl Fights Back Shopping List:
  • Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • Ground Turkey Breast
  • Boneless Lean Pork Roast
  • Boar's Head Hickory Smoked Chicken Breast
  • Boar's Head Hickory Smoked, Reduced Sodium Turkey Breast
  • Eggs
  • Romaine Lettuce
  • Onions
  • Carrots
  • Spinach
  • Cabbage
  • Zucchini
  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Oranges
  • Tangerines
  • Cantaloupes
  • Watermelon
  • Grapes
  • Blueberries
  • Fat Free Milk
  • Light, Fat Free Yogurt (assorted flavors)
  • Fat Free Cottage Cheese
  • Kraft Fat Free Sharp Cheddar Shreds
  • Kraft Fat Free American Cheese Singles (yes, processed, but 1 point and considered a power food)
  • Steam Fresh Single Serve Brussels Sprouts (great for lunches)
  • Quick oats
  • Pinto Beans
  • Black Beans
  • White Beans
  • Sauerkraut
  • Whole Wheat Pasta
  • Sugar Free Jell-o (again, processed but considered a power food due to low calories - works as a great "treat" for those times when you just need "something")
  • Reduced Calorie Wheat Bread
Certainly, my list is far from perfect and I'm sure I could reduce my processed foods even more. But, this is such a vast improvement from where I was and I'm sure it will only get better from here.

I plan to share some photos of different meals this week as I take this next step in my journey - powering up on Power Foods!

Click here to read more about Weight Watchers Power Foods.

Week 31 - Weigh In

This week I gained a very small amount - .2lbs (yes, there is a period there, it was POINT TWO pounds). I know why this happened and believe it or not, I don't think it's directly related to food. I stayed on plan, my food choices were, for the most part, good choices. I'm fairly certain the point two gain is due to the absolutely crazy schedule of the week which resulted in less than four hours sleep every night. Our bodies do a lot of work while we sleep.

It's all good. I just keep moving.

Goals for this week:
1. Stay on plan with food choices (need not be said, really)
2. At least five gym days. At least! (lacked this last week)
3. Bed by 11 every night!! (this is a big one and I can only do this if I focus on finishing homework today)
4. Drink all my water each day (I've been slacking on the water intake)

If I can do those four things, successfully, I WILL hit my 50lb weight loss goal by next Sunday.

So here's to a great week!!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

You'll put an eye out!

If you have been following me from the beginning, and even if you haven't, you may know that it was a Microbiology class during summer term that was the catalyst for my weight loss journey. It wasn't anything I learned in the class as I actually had to drop it during the first week.

No, it was an ill fitting lab coat that was necessary for my labs. Ill fitting is actually saying it nicely - it DIDN'T fit. When I buttoned the top button it gave the appearance that in a split second the button may launch itself across the room and hit a fellow student in the eye. A mental picture of walking into the class and fellow students ducking and covering, quivering in fear from this weapon of mass destruction sitting on my chest flashed as I looked in the mirror. Obviously, the dangers and liability of this potential catastrophe was enough to make any sane person feel obligated to dismiss themselves from the class. But, that was just one button - the others wouldn't remotely come close to meeting their adjacent holes - the bottom button had at least a 10 inch gap between it and its hole.

Without the proper protection from the microbes, one cannot take the lab and without the lab one cannot take the class. So, I soon found myself with that summer off.

You can read more about this experience here: Today is the first day of the rest of my life

Tonight, was my first night in Microbiology. My lab coat FITS!!!!! I have never been so thrilled to wear something in all my life as I am this lab coat. I did it!! I'm happy to report, no one in MCB2010 is in danger of losing an eye this term. At least not from a lab coat button injury.

Now, to hit the books.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Week 30 - Weight In

I lost. I LOST!!! If you read my blog from a few days ago, you are probably as shocked as I am.

Not only did I lose but I lost 6.2lbs!! This means I'm only 1.4lbs away from my 50lb goal. Amazing! Wonderful! Oh thank goodness!!

Quick Stats:
Loss - 6.2lbs
Total - 48.6lbs
Only 1.4lbs away!!!!!!!

Friday, January 7, 2011

I hurt myself today

Paul Mason, pictured at nearly 1,000 pounds.
I ran on to an article while surfing around Facebook today and it really made me think about some of the things I've already said on this blog. I don't proclaim to be an expert on this subject and I certainly don't hold a degree in psychology; however, I believe there is much more than just "I want to eat too much" driving the compulsive eater to binge. Treatment for this disorder is more complex than just "eat this" and "do that." I believe Paul Mason is saying the same thing.

Below is a summary of the article with a link to read the full story.

The world's fattest man wants to fight obesity: with a lawsuit.

Paul Mason, who once weighed almost 1,000 pounds, is blaming the NHS (Britain's public health system) for sending him to dietitians who merely told him to lose weight -- but didn't identify his problem as an eating disorder, British newspaper the Sun reported.

The former postal worker told the Sun that when he went to the NHS for help with his eating as early as 1996, he was told to "ride your bike more."
I think what I found most shocking, or perhaps not shocking at all based upon my own personal experience as an obese person, was the lack of compassion and understanding about this disorder. In our society (said broadly to incompass most of the western world) food addiction is looked upon as just gluttonous behavior. We seem to have a better understanding about other substance abuse issues like alcoholism and drug abuse but lack knowledge when it comes to food abuse. In turn, which is the point Mr. Mason is trying to make, doctors are not offering viable and helpful solutions to the obesity problem.

His doctor's "ride your bike more" solution is equally as insufficient as Nancy Reagan's "just say no" anti-drug campaign of the 1980's and early 90's. While there is a possibility that his motives rest with monetary gain, I'm hoping the true motive is to do just as he says and that is raise awareness about an issue that is eating at (pun intended) at least 400 million adults as estimated by the World Health Organization. This is not a little issue! Yet, doctors are offering very little support when comparing this addiction to others like it.

Now, mind you, I do not proclaim to believe that every person packing on a few extra pounds in that 400 million statistic has a food addiction nor an eating disorder. Someone who overindulges slightly, gains a few extra pounds but for the most part does not have an unhealthy relationship with food, is more than likely not a food addict. Certainly advice to just get a little more active and try watching what they eat would be acceptable. This is much like asking someone who is not an alcoholic, who may drink more than the recommended 7 or 8 drinks per week to just cut back a little. However, one would not tell a raging alcoholic, who consumes a case of beer per day, to just stop drinking and feel that was adequate enough advice to curb the abusive behavior. This is the equivalent of what Mr. Mason's doctors did with him for years. Offering little to no true solutions for someone who has a disorder of this magnitude.

Our society has advanced greatly with acknowledging the importance of mental health and we've made great strides in the treatment of substance abuse. Absolutely there is an element of personal responsibility; but I think in our time it is a well known fact that most addicts need the support and resources of others to finally get the monkey off their backs.  This is where Mr. Mason's doctors failed.

From the sense of awareness, I applaud Mr. Mason for his efforts to bring this issue to the forefront of his government health care system. Unfortunately, based upon the public opinion, I'm not sure how successful he will be. It is going to take many of us to build a network of support and compassion. Perhaps one day, as an RN, I will be able to bring these issues to light within the system. For now, I'll just keep on writing.

Now, a look into a substance abuser's mind. Listen to the lyrics and grasp the cyclical self-torment. Not to be overly dramatic but eating disorders are a form of self abuse and self hate, which isn't too far away from the actions of the heroin addict.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Time to let it out and move on

"When the going gets tough, the tough get going."

I really wish this statement applied to me. I find that when the going gets tough, my initial response is to curl up in a ball in the corner and close myself off from everyone and everything. It's almost like I turn into that little turtle and when I get frightened I suck myself into my shell until the threat is gone. If I were Hindu, I would think that my soul was once that of a turtle. My name would have been Herby. It is time I shed that shell and bid Herby farewell, as this coping mechanism no longer works for me - not that it ever has.

I saw a poll the other day asking people how honest they are on social media (blogs, Facebook, etc.) and it made me think about myself.  For the first time, I'm going to air my stresses and attempt to leave them here. I'm not one to really "vent" on my blog, as I typically like to keep this upbeat and inspiring. However, I've hit a bump in the road, I need to do something different, change it up a bit so I can keep moving forward.  I also need to share this struggle. This life's journey is real and the reality is life is not always inspiring, positive and perfect.  If I don't share some of my day to day, how can anyone else truly relate to this and how can this story really be complete?  It simply can't.

Lately, I've really been struggling. I'm not even sure struggle is the correct word. Perhaps I'm dangling. I honestly can't tell you where I am with my weight as I missed my weigh in again on Sunday.  History has taught me that this is where I have always failed in the past. This is where I fall off the wagon and it takes off like a rocket, leaving me behind.

Over two years ago, my husband lost his job. While it has been a mixed blessing because his disease has progressed to the point that he really can't work a full-time, 40 hour work week now, it has caused much financial hardship in our family. I think most people have been hit by the economy and we are no different. We are living paycheck to paycheck which poses a constant threat that a ball will fall out of this juggling act and we will lose our home, a vehicle or some creditor will become impatient enough to cause worse hardship on our already stressed pocket book.  Of course, the holidays only compounded this financial stress.

Additionally, a few months ago we took our two youngest children out of daycare, as the costs were equal to a second mortgage payment. Now they stay home with my husband.  Needless to say, it extremely difficult for him to take care of two children under four. I call several times a day to check-in on them but the constant feeling that an emergency will arise eats at me throughout the day. 

His disease is getting worse. I'm not sure if it's due to the fact that his treatments have been delayed four months, causing the rheumatoid arthritis to come out of remission completely or if we are just at that point in this disease where it gets really bad, but he is really sick.  Yesterday, received lab results. CRP is a protein which is secreted by the liver in response to inflammation. For a normal person the range is 0-10 - his is 202! This is equal to the inflammation of a burn victim. SED rate is also measured, which is basically the rate red blood cells drop to the bottom of a test tube in an hour. The higher the SED, the more inflammation in the body. Again, normal range is low numbers - in the 20's considered being normal for an adult male. His was in the 160's. His RA is out of control.  The light at the end of this tunnel is he is finally, after months of struggle with the insurance company, receiving a new medication that will hopefully help. I'm excited that he is receiving his new medication today but it also comes with it's own set of worry. Initial sickness from the chemicals pumped into his body make the day difficult. (This drug is also given to cancer patients during chemotherapy.) Long term side effects come with their own set of worries. For the most part, we look forward to the potential relief the drug will provide but there is still a nagging "what if" in the back of the mind, hovering over us like a fog, never touching the earth but there just to cloud the sky.

Spring term starts next week. I will be in class four nights a week. Fortunately, my classes start later in the evening so each day I will have 30 minutes between work and school to come home and eat a quick meal with my family, I'm thankful for that change. I graduate with my A.A. degree in May. While that shouldn't seem like a stresser, it is, as my next step is the actual nursing program. The nursing classes are only offered during the day. When starting on this path to be an RN a year and a half ago, I honestly thought our situation would be different, my husband's disease would be better, he would be working full-time again and I would have the ability to be a full-time nursing student. Now being the only income for our family this plan is a little different. I know everything has a means of working out and the answers often come in the eleventh hour. I just wish I knew how this one is going to pan out.

I have a lot going on right now with a lot of balls in the air. I know that I can get through this and I know I can get back on track. I got paid today which means I can go to the grocery store, stock up on my healthy foods which have been absent from my home the last few weeks and get back on track. It's so much easier when the kitchen is stocked with healthy choices.

The last two years I've tried to live my life with a philosophy that worry only makes negative situations worse, as it is completely void of any benefit. Unfortunately, sometimes the emotional state supersedes the logical thought. I'm leaving my worries here today, not for sympathy but to simply share not only the ups of this weight loss journey, but also the downs.

I am going to fight this. I am going to push myself to come out of this shell. I must re-motivate and continue what I started last May. I CAN do this, through any of the stress life throws at me. I am not a quitter and I am not falling off this wagon again.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Loved the Break - Now Back to Business!

The holidays are over. My tree will soon be packed away with all of the family ornaments that we look forward to digging out of the paper and boxes next year. Unfortunately, I've also packed on a few pounds but nothing too much that can't be taken off in the next few weeks. It's back to business time!

I'm quite sure I'm not alone with getting off track through the holidays. Years ago, this may have been the point where I threw in the towel and continued on the "old normal" lifestyle. However, this time is different. I'm looking forward to getting back to my routine. I'm looking forward to my early morning workouts, my lunch bag packed to the brim with fresh fruits and veggies. I'm looking forward to finally hitting that 50lb goal I set after Thanksgiving. While I haven't hit it, I'm OK with that. The holidays were special and while I did gain, I KNOW I would have gained far more if I hadn't had already established healthy habits.

Honestly, I think this two week "break" from Weight Watchers - while not totally a break and not totally planned, is actually a good thing! Tomorrow, walking back in my meeting will be like week 1 all over again! That is thrilling for me! Sometimes we get into a rut and boredom sets in. I think that was really happening for me and the timing was actually perfect. I was able to splurge, allow myself a small gain and now I feel refreshed and ready to get back on that road to better health!

I'm not really one to do New Year's resolutions, so I don't really have one. However, one new change I plan to add to my routine is asking a personal trainer at the gym to create a weight routine for me. It's time to start toning and not just walking. I'm looking forward to it.