Posts Tagged ‘reclaimed life’

body apologyThis has been my meditation lately and my question for myself.

 

(I am down weight wise 115 pounds which is not important, it is just a number but it does mean one thing, I have a lot more free time as I am not eating all the time, but doing other things like meditating on things like this, lol)

 

I recently read something somewhere (not sure where) this premise or idea:

We are either eating for health and to nourish our bodies or we are eating for our disease.

 

Think about it? If you pondered each bite that went into your mouth and ask this question, what would the answer be?

Is this piece of fudge, fad laden chips (or sugar and salt laden baked chips) or sugar candy going to feed and nourish my body with great nutrients or feed the high blood pressure, the diabetes, the coronary artery disease (etc etc)?

Does the sweetness of good and nutritious things full of wonderful body healing antioxidants, vitamins and minerals say in a piece of fruit, fresh vegetables (that aren’t cooked to death or laden with fatty sauces and butter) or lean protein sources lead to my long life, my vitality, my body’s happiness and weight control?

Am I eating to nourish my Life and my body or am I eating what will cause my body’s disease?

What would your answer be?

It takes awhile possibly to start tasting the mouth coating greasiness of fried foods (that somehow tastes disgusting to me now honestly) when the mouth has become accustomed to eating this way. I know because I was that person. I loved fried foods, fatty Poor Boys full of grease soaked fried seafood! (I live in New Orleans after all!) I recently tasted a bite of fried food and I hated it! (It was 15 months since I had dared to try it) I couldn’t take another bite! I am not complacent though. I have been on the weight loss/weight gain dance for a long time, like most of my life, and I know I would “get over” that initial grease repulsion if I slip back into my bad habits and the weight would pile back on again! Same with sugary, over salted foods. I had to wean myself off of some of them or quit cold turkey like a bad habit. It wasn’t easy. No one said this was easy but I have found out, if I look around and read out within the human world around me hundreds and thousands (even) of people are contending with this each and every day!

 

I don’t want to go back there.

So, I ask myself eat day in my mindful eating way, what do I do?

Do I eat for nutrition and to nourish my life and body or am I eating my disease?

I think, for me, the choice is easy…….. Just for today, it is health I crave like water in the desert………..

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One this in true I think, it is HARD (sometimes feels TOO hard) to get started. I am glad I did. It is almost a year since I had weight loss surgery. I have lost 20 inches on my waist alone and over 107 pounds. What a life changer that is but taking the first steps and following them with more little important steps and so on could feel overwhelming, especially in the beginning. Was it scary and hard, of course it was! BUT this blog is NOT about weight loss surgery it IS about reclaiming and claiming something of mine (or yours) that I want for my life! The surgery was just one of my little steps. An important one yes, but it was only a step. I have more weight to lose, fitness goals and life goals and then there is maintenance as a healthy eating individual. It isn’t about the surgery, it IS about life.

Does it matter if you are having surgery of this type or starting a weight loss regime of your own, or a gym/workout regime or whatever. The first step is the hardest! Following it up with other steps is the next hardest….

One of my favorite sayings is this:

“A journey of three thousand miles is begun with a single step.”

If the goal seems far far away it can be even more daunting. For me in the beginning it was – 1) go to the seminar

2) go the doctor and check him/her out

3) go to the free support groups and see how people did

4) find out all I could about it online

5) do my pre-op stuff (lots of doctors appointment and lab work)

6) get insurance approval

7) make SURE I had the right stuff in the house like protein drinks and vitamins

8) read “Weight loss surgery for Dummies” 🙂

and so on up until the day of the surgery.

That day I took one single tiny step and showed up, trusted them (it was scary) and just did it.

Then in the hospital postop I did what they said.

Same when I got home.

I added walking many times a week and from a coach potato I walk no less than 8 miles a week (usually much much more than that). It is the MENTAL part of this that is the hardest thing I think. Just taking that step mentally and following by action. But you only have to do ONE step and follow it with another, then another and so on.

And on and on. All things together in my mind would have seemed impossible. It is not. I am not that special (well sort of but you know what I mean, ordinary human person) but I decided I was NOT going to ask myself this-

IN A YEAR would I look back and wonder where I would be that day if I had taken the steps I wanted to get to my goals in life a year before or would I still be looking at the starting point?

What are your goals? What do YOU personally want to do?

  • Do you want to climb a mountain but need to train?
  • Do you want to run the Boston Marathon but can only walk a block?
  • Do you want to lose weight to get into that cute bikini but need to make the decision?
  • Do you want to hike the Appalachian Trail from Canada to the end but have to take the training to get this done?
  • Do you want to go to college and get another or your first degree?
  • Do you want to travel abroad but need to save the money to be able to go?
  • Do you want to sail around the USA and eventually around the world in your sailboat but need to figure out everything to be able to take that year off and pursue your dream?
  • Do you want to go to Rome and see every sight and learn the language?
  • Do you want to go to a real yoga retreat in India but know there is much you need to do in preparation?
  • Do you want to walk a mile a day but are so sedentary you are only on the sofa watching TV?
  • Do you want to become and artist but have to take lessons?
  • Do you want to do things you have only dreamed about but have been procrastinating for 20 years?
  • Do you want to be a bodybuilder but only go to the gym now and then and keep putting it off?

 

THE TIME HAS COME TODAY!

Make it happen for yourself and don’t get discouraged. Others are falling down and getting up again everywhere around the world all the time! Just do it, take that first simple tiny step. Make those steps little, tiny and manageable and build on that. If you have a bad day or week just dust yourself off and just go for it again!

 

I do this in so many places in my life each and every day and the steps are getting stronger and bolder and easier each day!

It is my one and only life and I want to make it count (don’t you?) so I am taking that journey.

I know in one year I will look back happy. I won’t be on my sofa watching reruns wondering where my life went. I will have reclaimed my life and people if I can do it I have no doubt you can!

Nuff said….(I want the poster but I feel it in my heart!)

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Bring your own snacks EVERYWHERE! Movies are a big place to get tripped up (it is like and unhealthy food minefield in most of them. REMEMBER you are going there to see the movie (or the football game or the concert or whatever it is AND NOT going there to eat) Eat ahead of time if you are hungry! Bring some little snacks until movie theater owners get more savvy and supply healthy options. I am fond of these going out and about but make sure it is pre-portioned:

  1. Protein
  2. 100 calorie almond packs
  3. string cheese or baby bell
  4. freeze dried lower carb fruit (watch the servings though). I like Brother’s Naturals Fiji Apple and Crispy Green cantaloupe (tastes like candy it is that sweet!) or mixed berries
  5. carrot sticks/carrot chips with 100 calorie guacamole (like Wholly Guacamole – they have several flavors including spicy)
  6. 3 ounce packs of prepackaged tuna
  7. raw cauliflower with that above guacamole
  8. Greek yogurt with any low carb raw veggie
  9. micro salads I prepare ahead of time in a sealed 3-4 ounce container. (I carry little plastic forks, spoons and knives with me everywhere!)

Going to a tailgate party, to meals with family or friends? Ask what is being prepared, ask with assertiveness. I ALWAYS have some stuff prepared in my fridge and cupboard that helps me when I am running around town, going to the movies or perhaps out on the town where there are TONS of unhealthy temptations. (and this includes especially visiting friends and relatives!)and you will succeed. I find from all my years on the earth plus.

First, it’s time to stop being so polite and eating just what the host(ess) prepares. Be frank (and friendly) and just tell the truth. “This IS for my health issues, I can’t eat this!” (it’s true right? sized humans are way too too polite and don’t know how to stick up for themselves!

The faulty pre-reclaimed life reasoning is like this:

          “They took all the time to prepare this with love or skill so I would insult them. ” (etc etc.) or “I will insult my host(ess)” “I don’t want to be rude” “they worked so hard preparing this!”

          (to be polite let them know way ahead of time what your healthy changes entail and I bet they will go great guns to be supportive and helpful, they need to plan though you know? as a hostess  myself who loves to cook I do want my guests to be happy with what I prepare. Stand up for your reclaimed life! You can do it!)

The mental and emotional adjustment that needs to go into place is this:

         “IF I continue to eat things that are unhealthy for me, I will land in a grave, I WILL lose all my friends and family because I will be dead. I will die from high blood pressure, I will die from a stroke, a heart attack, from diabetes (and diabetic complications).” (picture your grave, morbid but necessary)

        OR (picture how hard it is to walk, to climb stairs, how hard it is to play with your children or grandchildren, do your job, improve your career etc)

       Put a picture in your mind of how it feels to be this obese and sedentary.  It IS HARD!

       AND Mine that I use with all of this is this:

      “I want to live life with GUSTO, with passion, to walk the streets and museums of Rome, to climb mountains (and hills), to jetski, to do the things I feel cut off from to the best of my ability with joy and health!”

“I WANT to live and long and healthy happy life!”

“I want to run TOWARDS my life, not just exist!”

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MAKE a commitment to yourself, you deserve and so do I!

 

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I did a lot of thinking this week about this blog and what I wanted to write here.

I decided to write on the above subject line but also write a bit about WHAT has keep me on track, best tips, most successful things I have done.

 

So here goes!

1. I walk, not everyday but I walk. (no less than 3 times a week but usually four or five) I try to do it in the sunshine. Know why? In the olden days, the days that weren’t so good I would become a virtual recluse. I got seriously, and I mean seriously VITAMIN D deficient. This is not the case anymore for two reasons: a) I take a supplement and make sure it has me taking at least 1500 MG of Calcium Citrate (not carbonate) each day and it won’t work without Vit D. and b) I get it from the sun! Free and cheap! NOTE here though, USE SUNBLOCKS!! I used a pedometer everywhere. (Mine is a FitBit but others I know have a Nike band or another type. Get something that works for YOU! it IS motivational, walking is free too!)

If you can walk every day, do it! Even if in the beginning it is only a block!

 

2. I take in no less and I mean NO LESS than 70 grams of protein a day, staggered out!

My favorite sources now that I am off of most protein supplements (my favorites of those are Atkins cuz of low carb and Unjury cuz it takes great, is low carb AND low calorie!) it is usually one of these. IF I fail here I will lose it all. I have to shop and make sure I have these in my fridge each week!

a.- Greek Yogurt – (note watch out for secret sugar counts by checking the calorie and carbohydrate counts on the side of the container! If it is over 100 calories or has over 9-10 grams of carbohydrate it is probably packed with at least SOME sugar). My favorite is light and fit Greek yogurt. I eat probably two a day every day!

b. eggs (cheap and great source of protein)

c. String cheese – the lowest fat I can bear. I like Frigo cheeseheads brand. The light version is pretty good.

d. Almond milk – unsweetened, tastes fabulous and if you are counting carbs this has none vs. real milk!

e. I eat meat once a day and not all meats are the same – I like chicken a lot. Boneless skinless chicken thighs cooked in broth with thyme, Knorr reduced sodium stock, celery, green onions, (you don’t need salt with this stock and broth) pepper and reduced sodium broth and a little white wine. I add a bit of cooking sherry but that is optional. Put a tsp of poultry seasoning if you want and bring to a boil, simmer for an hour covered on low or medium) Delicious! I bag up the leftovers and use them for a few days and put the remainder in the freezer after Day 3 so I can throw it into homemade soup on another day.

NEWLY POST-OP ie. under 6-9 months ignore this part: I also take chicken with skin on (a splurge and not for immediate post op or gastric by pass patients because of the fat) and dry it off after rinsing it and toweling it off. I brush lightly with olive oil (and I mean lightly!) I salt with tons of light salt and pepper a little poultry seasoning, some rosemary and/or a bunch of thyme. Bake at 375 for about one hour or until I put a thermometer in and it says 165 degrees at the thickest part of the meat. It should be golden crispy on the outside. I don’t eat the skin EVER, it has about 100 fat calories per inch! I don’t like that! My partner in all things loves that I make this for him though!

Beef is super high in protein but has a lot of fat, I limit to once a week. I have pork once a week. I saute in broth or bake. I do NOT fry ever! 100 calories a teaspoon of fat sucks! I don’t want to record that you know?

 

3.  I take my vitamins EVERY DAY! I want to live without a damage bone structure, damaged nerves from deficiencies and all the havoc that passing out and getting in a car accident could cost. It is part of my duty to myself to have this personal accountability here! I don’t like feeling tired all the time! I take Unjury chewable multiple vitamins, Bariatric Advantage calcium chews (caramel is best), Wellesse B complex liquid just to boost my energy if it ebbs low and as directed a sublingual B12 and/or injection of B12 as directed. I don’t miss any one of those things EVER!

4.  If you are post gastric sleeve I would suggest Miralax EVERY DAY or you will regret it! Tiny stomach, all protein diet, low fiber count and you get backed up. I mix mine with vitamin water zero orange and it’s great!

5. I hydrate, I keep water beside my bed at night and I keep a bottle of Vitamin Water zero at my side always! I drink ALL the time. I didn’t before and I felt slugish, tired, run down, my skin looked bad. Since most of my being in this corporal body I walk around in is WATER I need it and I need it a lot! Kidney stones stink!

When I walk I have a bottle, if I go to the movie theater that’s what I drink usually (more on that topic of movies and going on later)

WATER=LIFE!!!

6. I record EVERY and I mean EVERY BITE that goes in my mouth! Every one! I don’t miss a day EVER! I use Myplate at http://www.livestrong.com/myplate. It is free and when I do this historically, I SUCCEED at maintenance after weight loss, when I don’t I start gaining and losing track of what I am doing. (this also has an APP too for you smart phone users though it’s not as good as the computer version)

Every single weight regain I have EVER had (and there has been a few of these times in my life sadly) it is because I have failed to do so! EVERY TIME! “Just Do IT!” as Nike says! (My favorite all-time inspirational saying!) Don’t miss a day … ever or plan to fail.

Which brings me to………

7. If I fail to plan I plan to fail, also historically true! Plan you grocery lists, your cooking, your food for each day, your protein counts (make sure you get it all in), your exercise, your liquids (beer and alcohol doesn’t count! lol), walking and your time. I have my set list ready in my purse. I check during the week to make sure I have enough for the next day or week. Every day, every week. IF I FAIL TO PLAN, I PLAN TO FAIL!

8. Recreate, get out among other humans. Not sure how and in what? Check out http://www.meetup.com for any extreme number of shared interested (including staying motivated with whatever you are dealing with or want to do) but recreate! I am 3 groups there now. I attend my weight loss support as often as I can. Why? Because I need to see them and they need to see me for the same reasons. Newbies remind me where I was, older people are kept on track see how others are doing and I think it is important to share this journey. It is important. For you it might be weight watchers, or a support group in a 12 step group like AA, NA or OA. All help but we need to give and get support I think. Having something fun to do and places to go to are pretty important especially if you are single.

THERE are FREE exercise groups in Meetup all the time to add to point number 1 about walking. If you can’t afford a gym yet (I bet you will in time) these are usually quite free. IF there isn’t one for your area, START ONE!

9. I had to stop making excuses and get with it!

10. Weigh on a regular basis to keep on track. I do it every am before I eat or drink anything on an electronic scale. Some people have eating disorders made worse by this. With your dietician or whomever is helping you with this by having you weight backwards.

I hope this helps someone but I am certain from time to time I am going to need to come back to this and read it over and over again! Check out the poll!

 

 

LAUGH much and often!

 

inspiration

I think this needs examined a little.

First I think something needs to be lost first perhaps. Or it can be something that one needs to lose. Weight isn’t just all there is in this. With such an attitude I am finding this blog about weight loss is purely not about weight loss but needs to evolve somehow.

So evolve into what? Metamorphosis is the word. What is my personal metamorphosis? For what ever reason I allowed myself to get lost in obesity. I don’t even remember particularly how or why it started. After I get the great nutrition down and underway it is kind of moot except that personal self awareness and self honesty I MUST have to not go back to that deep dark unmoving, immobile space of obesity and zero life.

Second, I have to decide what it is I WANT? What do I want? I want to be part of life, of love, of involvement, of love, of laughter or owning the good and the bad and laughing on into my own destiny NO MATTER where I am at that moment. I want to redesign, to refashion my own life on the fly and own it. I want to be an evolutionary being, a sentient creature who is connected. Connected to myself is first to pardon the touchy-feely here. Then connected to others, included those significant in my life. First and always be true to my being.

It is my life. I want it, I crave it and where I might not (might) climb Mount Everest now, I might climb Mount St. Helens or Mount Manfield or my beloved Appalachian trail. (I have walked 1.2 miles of it which doesn’t do my goals justice, lol)

I can taste it.

When I was “tasting” everything buried in food I had zero taste of life. Now I am getting the gingery flavors of life, zest and passion!

Metamorphosis indeed…

This is my evolutionary quest!