blogging, enjoying family, Exercise, Finding old friends, food and family celebrations, Friendship, Having fun, losing weight, love, Medical Weight Loss Program, optifast

Weight Loss and Life Updates :)

Ooooh, someone's giving a free gun show!
Ooooh, someone’s giving a free gun show!

Yesterday was my last training session for the wellness center’s eight-week, weight management program. I’m not finished at the wellness center, by any means; I’m just moving on to a different phase of the program.  Instead of meeting with a trainer twice a week for an hour, I’ll meet with a trainer once a week for thirty minutes to discuss my progress and make any need adjustments.  Now that I’ve graduated to this phase, I’m expected to be more responsible for scheduling my own workout times. I’m not worried about this, because I’ve already been coming in on my own two-three additional times per week beyond my two scheduled sessions. I know that the only way to get the optimum results from Optifast is to exercise.

Yesterday was also my weigh in day. I was really happy to find that I’d lost three more pounds. I’m almost into the 170s, which seems miraculous to me. It’s been years since I’ve seen those digits on the scale!

Beyond the scale’s reading, I’m noticing so much more. I look and feel so physically changed. My stomach is becoming flat, and my bottom shapelier. My legs have muscular definition and my daughters have told me they want their arms to look like mine. According to them I have “guns.” I’ll flex periodically in their direction to offer them a free “gun show,” just for laughs!

The physical aside, this entire experience is changing my life. I’m rarely just sitting at home alone. I’m always on the move; enjoying the company of people and the beauty of life. The wellness center has been a mecca for meeting new friends. I’m happier, more energetic, and more open to the possibilities that life has to offer.

Last night, my brother asked me if turning 50 has bothered me. Perhaps, a year, or even six months ago, it might have nagged at me. I might have seen it as the beginning of getting older and the ending of some of my potential. His question actually stumped me for a moment, because the idea of being let down by another birthday hadn’t crossed my mind. Turning 50 was a loving and joyous experience for me. My age has no part in the definition or execution of my goals. I pray he’ll feel the same in three years when his half-century mark rolls around.

I hope all of my dear readers are having a beautiful, happy day. I know I’ve said it before, but I can’t emphasize enough how important you all are to me! ❤

 

blogging, dealing with food cravings, emotional eating, enjoying family, Finding old friends, Food Addiction, losing weight, love, Medical Weight Loss Program, optifast, problem solving, setting goals, Thankfulness, Uncategorized, weight loss and deprivation

Day 36: Feeling Deprived?

Are you afraid of not feeling satisfied while losing weight?
Are you afraid of not feeling satisfied while losing weight?

The decision to begin my weight loss journey was a difficult one.  Over the years, food had become a replacement for a number of things that were missing in my life.  Filling my stomach was my way of filling a void that I thought was beyond my control to seal. Giving up the carbohydrate-laden, sugar-filled foods that temporarily gave me a sense of contentment, and replacing them with five Optifast shakes a day for nearly 18 weeks absolutely terrified me.

I had to wait two weeks for my first appointment at the bariatric center from the day that I initially worked up the courage to call them.  During that span of time, I despondently said my final farewells to all of my favorite dine-in and fast food restaurants by visiting and ordering all of my favorite dishes.  I cooked all of the delicious comfort foods that my mom used to make and gorged on their doughy, sugary, buttery goodness. I ate when I was ravenous and when I was stuffed. I ate until I was sick and ashamed. I was like an alcoholic going on the biggest bender of their lifetime.  Except my drug of choice was food and I was terrified of feeling deprived. Deprivation meant that the void that I’d worked so desperately to satisfy would be left empty and exposed.

Now at the beginning of my sixth week of weight loss, I can’t believe the changes that are happening to me.  Yes, I’m shrinking a bit on the outside, but I’m growing exponentially on the inside.  This break from food is allowing me to fill my void with other things; things that are healthy, sustaining, and edifying.  In just six short weeks I’ve lost fears, accepted love, made friends, found opportunities, learned to live in the moment, and reconnected with people and activities that make me a happy, whole, connected and extremely satisfied person. So far, my fears are unfounded; I am not deprived.

If you’ve lost weight, or are in the process, what fears did/do you have about changing your way of eating?  What positive habits have you added to replace overeating?  Please share 🙂

blogging, Finding old friends, weight loss journal

Day 31: Reconnecting

Nothing feels better than a hug from an old friend! (Photo from Microsoft photo art)
Nothing feels better than a hug from an old friend! (Photo from Microsoft photo art)

Yesterday, I received an invitation to a 50th birthday party being given for one of my closest childhood friends, by her mother.  The phone number on the RSVP line was like a wormhole, whooshing me back in time to kindergarten.  At five years of age, it was the first friend’s number I’d ever memorized, and nearly forty-five years later it’s still the same.

Lately, reconnecting with old friends has become a big priority.  Now that free time has been granted to me, since my children are more independent, that forever yearning in my heart for lengthy phone conversations to catch up, hear old stories, and share giddy girlfriend laughter, begs to be answered.  Perhaps it’s my own impending half-century mark arriving in April, but I’ve been picking up the phone more, sending emails and snail mail, and letting more people back into my life.  I’ve been tossing aside my worries about what others will think of what I look like, or how they might judge my successes and failures, because none of that matters. We all get a little  more wrinkled and wiser and accepting as time goes by–and thank goodness for that!

Do you have old friends that you’d like to catch up with?  What’s keeping you from making the call?

 

blogging, dealing with food cravings, emotional eating, enjoying family, Finding old friends, Food Addiction, losing weight, love, Medical Weight Loss Program, optifast, problem solving, weight loss journal

Days 26 & 27: No More Wire Monkeys!

Psychologist, Harry Harlow in the midst of singularly f**king up this poor monkey's life. (Photo courtesy of The Adoption History Project, University of Oregon)
Psychologist, Harry Harlow in the midst of singularly f**king up this poor monkey’s life. (Photo courtesy of The Adoption History Project, University of Oregon)

I’m discovering so much about myself during this weight loss adventure and very little of it has to do with food.  While I expected to get to know my body’s signals for hunger and satiation, as well as the situations that trigger my desire to eat emotionally, or out of boredom, I didn’t expect to uncover the true source of why I overeat.

I assumed that I was “chubby” because I was still grieving the death of my mother who died when I was 20.  I also suspected that eating sleeves of cookies and bags of chips was my way of coping with the pain of nearly losing my daughter to her mental illness.  I supposed that if I tallied in a divorce when I was 30, and eight years of financially-strapped single motherhood with all of the other crappy things that had been thrown my way, that my size was the product of life’s perfect equation for fatness.  I was wrong; so, so wrong.  My weight has very to do with the things that have happened to me and far more to do with how I’ve reacted to them.

For as long as I can remember being me, I’ve never wanted to appear like I didn’t have my act together. I made good grades. I had outstanding work evaluations. I was the perfect daughter, sister, mom, wife, teacher, Girl Scout Leader–you name it.  I thrived on compliments like “You’re so strong.” “I can always count on you.”  “I don’t know how you handle all this, I’d fall apart!” Falling apart was fine for everyone else. I’d be there with hugs and baked goods if someone else was suffering.  However, if I was hurting, I kept it in, choked it down with extra portions, and made those baked goods for myself.  I never reached out to others because I didn’t want to appear weak.

Last night, I though of the Harlow experiment that probably everyone learned about in Psych 101.  It’s the study where Harry Harlow probed the nature of love and attachment by separating a group of  baby monkeys from their real mothers, a dick move in my opinion. He placed some of the babies with soft, terry cloth mothers that they could cuddle when frightened or stressed, and the others with cold, wire monkeys that provided no real source of comfort.  As predicted, the monkeys with terry cloth mothers developed normally (though I sort of doubt it) while monkeys placed with wire mothers were seven shades of f**ked up.  Food has been the wire monkey that I’ve clung to for years.  It’s mutely offered no condolences or advice.  Most importantly, it’s offered no real love or comfort.

From now on, I’m done with wire monkeys.  I won’t even let a terry cloth one darken my doorstep!  I’m letting real people in, and I’m letting them get to know the real me; the me who isn’t always so perfect, but is perfectly ok with that.

What changes would you like to make in your life?  How are you going about it?

****PS–I have so many wonderful blogs that I want to checkout and comment on, but I’m off to an appointment today.  I’ll be home this evening reading and commenting! Have a nice day everyone! 🙂

blogging, emotional eating, enjoying family, Exercise, Finding old friends, Medical Weight Loss Program, optifast, Uncategorized, weight loss journal

Day 23: A Good Feeling

Some days are just hopping, skipping, jumping up and down AWESOME and then there are days that are EVEN AWESOMER–like today.

I awoke a phone call from a rep from the hospital’s wellness center, letting me know about their fitness and aquatics programs.  This place is amazing!  It has a running pool, lap pool and a therapy pool, plus all sorts of classes, equipment, and a plethora of professionals there to help you when you need it.  I’ve signed up for an eight-week long weight loss program that includes unlimited access to the pools and other  gym equipment, and two, hour-long  sessions with a personal trainer per week for only $99!  I actually thought it was going to cost a lot more.  I also ordered a pair of aquatic running shoes that should be here in a few days.  I’m really excited about taking my fitness to the next level with less knee and ankle pain by using the pool for exercise.

The next great thing that happened was that my oldest daughter decided to commit to a healthier lifestyle with the rest of the family!  Now everyone is on board with exercising and eating a healthier diet.

Finally, the very best thing that happened was that while shopping I ran into an old friend from college that I’d lost touch with.  We hugged and hugged and have already been busily texting and making plans  since I got home.

The day isn’t over yet, so I’m sure they’ll be more awesomeness before I turn in for the night!

I love this song!  It’s great to workout to as well ( You may have to click the link on the screen)

Hope all of you are having a fantabulously amazing day! What did you do this wonderful Saturday?