August Weigh-In

At today’s Weight Watchers At Work meeting, I experienced a huge Non-Scale Victory (NSV) that gave me warm fuzzies.

During the meeting, we were instructed to write down something positive about someone else in the room — some way that they’d inspired you, or maybe they’d shared a tip that you found helpful, that sort of thing. Without being prompted to share what we’d written, one member pointed me out, along with the woman who sits beside me, as inspirations to others due to our weight-loss success and our constant tracking.

See, my meeting-neighbor and I have frequently shared with the members how we track daily and graph different variables over time, so we can see what works and what doesn’t. I guess I hadn’t realized what an impression we’re making on others in the meeting… but here we are.

It feels good to be someone’s inspiration.

Other August NSVs:

  • Successfully ate less-processed food for two days a week for about two weeks.
  • Went to the 6th floor at work to hit the salad bar, and saw that they also had chicken alfredo in the steamer trays. Passed it up in favor of sticking to my less-processed food plan.
  • Passed on leftover blueberry pie when prompted by my boss. And that was some damn good pie.
  • Tried on my Senior Prom dress from 20 years ago, and discovered that I’m at least one size — if not two sizes — smaller than I was back then.
  • Received another comment from my chiropractor about how much weight I’ve lost.
  • Sheryl commented in passing on how skinny my arms are getting.
  • Got a comment from the director of the fitness center at work that I’m getting smaller and smaller!

At first, I thought I’d call my two focus days Unprocessed Food days, until I realized that eating completely unprocessed food would make those days more of Raw Food days than just not eating pre-packaged food, which was the original intent. So, on my more-aptly-named Less-Processed Food days, I’ve been eating completely unprocessed foods like fruits and vegetables; but also moderately processed foods like pouch tuna, maple syrup, cocoa powder, and coffee; and a few very processed foods like low-calorie bread, instant grits, fat-free salad dressing, PB2, and Splenda. The main rule, though, is no pre-packaged snacks or frozen meals.

Where it really helps me is in keeping me away from convenience foods, especially in the evening. It’s so easy to grab a Fiber One cookie or brownie, and another one, and then maybe a Skinny Cow ice cream candy bar — and before I know it, I’ve eaten another meal’s worth of Points without even thinking. When I have to consciously think about what I’m going to eat — perhaps actually mix up a serving of chocolate syrup to go with my banana — it forces me to slow down and think about what I’m going to eat.

Where it also helps — and what makes it challenging to stick to, for me — is the need for meal planning. The days when I started throwing my hands up and saying sayonara to the Less-Processed Food days were the ones when I would fail to plan what was for dinner that night, or for lunch and snacks at work the next day. It’s the old adage: if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

I want to continue at least one Less-Processed Food Day per week. It makes me feel good, physically and mentally. I like knowing that I can stick to something a little more regimented, and I just feel physically better when I eat “clean.”

Baby steps. My next weight mini-goal is barely two pounds away.

Not sure if it’s my old pal Spondy or my bulging disc, but something in my lower back is not happy lately. #spondylolisthesis #couldbeworse

That’s amusing: I had been thinking this morning that maybe some zazen would do me good. instagram.com/p/sKvX2-NU4T/

Instagram Photo

Did a core fitness workout for 45 mins and felt good. This tweaky-back feeling must just mean I worked my core. I… bit.ly/1t6GIt2

Cultivating my Twittersheet so that it’s more tool than timesuck. Unmuting and subsequently unfollowing lots of folks today. #nooffenseguys

Hi, tweeps! I’m back from a weeklong self-imposed Twitter hiatus. Miss me?

Twitter Avoidance

I hadn’t realized what a habit it’s become to just pick up my phone and launch up Echofon. I justify it by saying that Twitter is where I get my news. Plus, no one has a personal blog anymore, so Twitter is where I go to find out what people are doing (instead of Facebook).

Truth is, it’s just a habit. A ritual. And like all habits and rituals, it merits some reconsideration sometimes. Why am I really doing this? Should I do it differently, or not at all?  (more…)

Crushed By The Weight Of Parenting

I was in a pretty deep funk the other day, so I e-mailed my bestie, Amy, who lives three hours away.

Amy will tell it like it is. I’ve always loved that about her: we’ll sit down over coffee or go for a walk or just talk over text or e-mail, and she’ll show me things in a different light.

The great thing about this particular epiphany was that I had e-mailed her about a different woe-is-me topic entirely, and part of what she came back with was related and relevant and not at all what I had originally said.

Without actually quoting her entire e-mail, she said that she can see me and Aaron “sagging with the weight” of parenting a toddler. And I absolutely agree. We’re kind of in Groundhog Day mode, where every weekend is like the last, and every week includes three Daycare Days and two Daddy Days, and we honestly don’t get out of the house much, unless it’s for a weekend meal or a trip to the grocery store.

Another great quotable was, “I can’t shake the impression that you’ve let this whole parenting thing drag you down instead of letting it give you something new to enjoy.”

I got to thinking about that. Thinking hard.

It’s true that we didn’t initially choose the path of parenthood for this very reason. We liked our lifestyle of sleeping in, eating out, and annual trips abroad. That said — we both love our son immensely. Just because we as a family have weirdly conflicting schedules doesn’t mean that we can’t also find something to enjoy about the weirdness. Maybe Saturday mornings can be my and Connor’s special time together, when I can take him someplace he’s never been before. There’s nothing saying I can’t just plop Connor in the car and head out on a Saturday before Aaron gets up. Right?

I’d like my son to remember the times we spend together to be fun, happy, memorable. Mommy Time and Daddy Time and Family Time can and should all be different. What kind of precedent do I want to set: Saturday Morning TV Time with Mommy, or Saturday Morning Fun Time with Mommy? We could sit at the kitchen table eating breakfast — me staring bleary-eyed into an iced latte, him playing on my iPhone and being reminded to eat his mini-waffles — or maybe we could go out to breakfast! Share some fancy pancakes. Or we could make breakfast — something that doesn’t come pre-made out of a box. Then we could go walk around a store, or the mall, or the park, or even the zoo, and come home in time to relax for a bit before we go out to lunch with Daddy.

Maybe we can go make some memories. Discover something new to enjoy.

Walked 1.9 miles in 35 mins and felt great. Stroll along the river in 75% humidity. Sticky but still worth it. bit.ly/1l1cfKi

Did a yoga workout for 45 mins and felt blah. Lower back hurt. Wrists hurt. Arms were weak. bit.ly/1vmIhkO