Hard Times? Yep…I’m back again. ~By: Steph

 

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I hate that I come back here when I’m struggling.  I guess this blog is my subconscious pep talk. Today is day one of back on the wagon.  Repeat after me…Stephanie Kathleen, empty carbs ARE NOT YOUR FRIEND!  Thanks, I feel duly chastised.  I let them sneak in when my emotions are running high and they make me feel loved. Really?  Is that how I feel loved?  I have a Savior who died for me, a husband who honestly values me more than I often value myself, children who love me so much that they drive me insane…er…insaner???…that could be a word, a family who loves me and friends I can turn to.  Nope, every time I try to keep it all locked up and feed it carbs to keep it quiet.  The thing is, when that momentary emotional breakdown passes…I still keep eating carbs!

So, here I am once again telling you I screwed up and now I’m trying to make it all go away.  You don’t see that pile of nonsense I swept under the rug, do you?  The thing is, as well as I can put on the, “Nothings wrong here, nothing to see here, move along.” face.  That pile of nonsense is still there. The evidence is on the scale. Well the evidence is more on my thighs and tummy but, you catch my drift.  You can’t eat crappy foods and graze all day without consequences.  In this case, the consequences are 10 lbs I don’t want to hang out with.

I suppose the reason I keep coming back here to blog my failures, is to celebrate.  Why? Who celebrates their failures?  Me I guess.  If I’m back here blogging through my struggle, that means that I haven’t given in.  I haven’t thrown in the towel. I am determined to persevere and change my situation.  The day I decide to stop coming, “back again” and admitting my mistakes as I dust myself off, is the day I quit trying.  I pray that day never comes.  Maybe some of you will get tired of reading.  Maybe you will think, here we go again. Maybe that’s not what matters to me.  Maybe I do this so that I can help not only myself get back to my plan but, help the other people who have fallen and want to pick themselves up.  I know how alone you can feel and how you can be so abusive in your thoughts about yourself that you can’t fathom why anyone else values you at all.  You’re never alone.  My first stop is always God, then the people I’m closest to, and then it’s you.  Whoever may be reading this and needing to push through a hard moment will know that we have to keep fighting the fight, one day at a time.

It is 12:03 on day one, I am already sick of protein.  I want a damn cracker!  Hmm…have I mentioned I am crabby when I go off of carbs?  I know you’d never guess from my cheery typing. I have had egg, meat and then some more meat so far.  Looking forward to dinner.  I am making a, Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad.  I will use Greek yogurt with my ranch mix.  Grilled chicken breast, 1/2 slice of crumbled bacon, the big red tomato from my garden (I’m so excited!), a quarter of an avocado, and some lettuce and onion.  I love the idea of the lettuce, tomato and avocado.  I seriously can’t wait for them. I guess I CAN wait but, I don’t wanna. I also promise to be good and eat the chicken first. No really, pinkie swear!

I am currently on my third, 32 oz. cup of water today.  That is another thing I let slide when I’m eating poorly. I mean come on…if I filled up by drinking all of my water, where would my crackers go?  Just an FYI, Wheat Thins are a delicious, evil, member of the carb family. They seem sweet and innocent but, don’t say I didn’t warn ya!

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Isn’t she lovely? That’s a bad picture, it’s not her good side, the lighting was wrong, but, she’s absolutely perfect!!!

The weirdest thing about my “falling off the wagon” is that I LOVE healthy, fresh, foods.  I don’t know why I turn to packaged junk when I feel bad. I make delicious and healthy meals all of the time.  I love to experiment and find ways to lighten up dishes.  However, when I’m in carb mode I don’t even want to cook.

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Chicken “Nachos”

A couple of examples of things I have made lately. Chicken Nachos; 1 pound  grilled chunks of chicken breast with a chile spiced rub, 2 slices of crumbled bacon, 2 oz. of shredded sharp cheddar/Monterey Jack cheese, baked butternut squash cubes with a spice rub, and some green onion.  That was enough food for my husband and I to eat 2 meals.

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BBQ stuffed meatball and Caprese Salad in a steamed zucchini boat.

Simple half chicken, half lean beef meatballs basted with sf bbq sauce stuffed with a 1/4 oz cube of mozzarella cheese and wrapped in 1/3 slice of bacon, then baked.  Fresh mozz., grape tomatoes from the garden, fresh basil, and a little balsamic, served inside of a hallowed out and steamed zucchini half. 2 pounds of meat made 16 meatballs.

 

I am perfectly capable of feeding myself properly.  Why don’t I?

Hmm, I do want to point out that those meals were made weeks apart.  I don’t use bacon in every meal I prepare.  Says the lady making Chicken Bacon Ranch Salad, for dinner. 🙂

I end this with a plea to anyone who reads this.  This weekend there was a mass shooting in Florida.  No matter what your beliefs are, what your political affiliation, how you feel about people’s lifestyle choices, please be kind.  I have seen some of the ugliest and most hate filled rants on social media the past 24 hours. When did we become a country full of people who only feel compassion for others, IF THEY SHARE OUR BELIEFS?  It used to be, if you saw someone hurting you hurt for them, you didn’t judge them and spew your ugly hatred.  As a Christian I am so saddened that some of the hate flowing is being touted as, “in the name of God”.  Please realize that just because, some small sect is twisting God’s Word, are louder and more public, that doesn’t mean they speak for the majority. My heart hurts for those who lost partners, sons, daughters, friends, and loved ones.  My prayers are with them. Division will only make the wounds deeper.  If you pray, then please pray for those who are hurting and in need of comfort today.

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Chile Verde…yum ~By: Steph

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Chile Verde, only healthy carbs

Last Friday at the supermarket, I decided I was buying tomatillos.  I have never even unwrapped a tomatillo before.  I knew they went into homemade chile verde sauce.  Yep there’s my expertise in a tomatillo husk. Is it called a husk? Hmm…

I realized on Tuesday that I had forgotten about the tomatillos and they were going to end up going to dead vegetable land. More commonly known around these parts as, the trash bin.  Alas, many a vegetable has met this terrible fate in my home.  I decided to stop the madness and do something with these little green, wrinkle wrapped thingys. I went to…wait for it…Pinterest, and found a recipe that sounded pretty yummy/pretty easy (once again…I do not really follow recipes as much as I look at them to see what should go into something.) and I got to work.

Tomatillos are sticky little suckers under that covering.  It was weird and I got great satisfaction at washing their stickiness away before quartering them.  I threw the tomatillos, some chunked up green peppers (yep, chunked up), a couple of halved jalapenos, a rough chopped onion, and an entire head of peeled garlic, on a baking sheet.  Coated everything in roasted garlic olive oil and seasoned with chipotle chile powder, salt, pepper, and cumin.  Took about 15 mins to prep and get into the oven.  I roasted this until the house smelled phenomenal…that means about an hour.  They were so pretty but, I forgot to take a picture of their slightly charred gorgeousness.

After the veggies cooled down a bit I threw them into my Cuisinart with about 1/2 cup of chicken stock and 1 cup of cilantro leaves.  Whirled it until it looked Chile Verde sauce-ish and set it aside.  It was at this point when I realized it made enough for two recipes.  I threw half into a jar to be popped into the freezer.  After it got it’s picture taken, of course!

I cubed up a pork tip roast that I had quick thawed in a pan of water, while the veggies roasted.  They are very lean and I definitely prefer them with some kind of sauce to keep them moist. I seasoned the cubed roast up and popped it into a hot cast iron skillet to brown up. I contemplated throwing the meal into my slow cooker. Which is where I usually make my cheater chile verde with the jarred salsa and canned green sauce.  I thought better of using the slow cooker when I realized it was already after 12:45 and I wasn’t positive the meat would get tender enough before dinner.  I almost put it all away to make the next day and then GENIUS STRUCK.  Okay not really but, I did remember that I had some of those Reynold’s oven bags in the drawer.  I grabbed one out, added the meat, covered it with the sauce, sealed it up, stabbed the bag a couple of times so the steam could escape, and cooked it at 325 for about 2 1/2 hours.  The result was a really ugly looking bag that sort of scared me when I opened the oven. That’s why I included it in the picture.  I was totally convinced I had cooked dinner into an incinerated oblivion.

When I opened the bag up, there was bubbly, green, deliciousness! That’s not a phrase you use often.  I was totally ready to mash up some pinto beans and chow down for dinner that night.  NOPE, Big Guy had an errand to run so I went with him.  Ended up eating the kids meal of grilled chicken nuggets and fruit salad at Chik-fil-a. I LOVE that place.

Wednesday I made some Mexican riced cauliflower.  It was pretty delicious yet, still cauliflower and not rice.  I am not going to lie and say I like it as well as carby, delicious, rice but, I do think it was a nice substitute.   Mashed up and seasoned some pinto beans for fat free “refried” beans. Shredded up a little lettuce and diced a tomato because, I like the fresh crispness with Mexican food. Warmed up the Chile Verde in the oven and ta-da dinner!

I’d say that I spent about 40 mins of prep time on the meal.  There was a lot of waiting patiently (I’m so very good at that…) for the oven.  The end result was definitely worth the time it took.

Healthy carbs, veggies, lean pork, homemade sauce, and some new favorites.  I call this meal a win.

Everyone ate this meal except for My Monster Boy. Well, The Bee didn’t eat the cauli rice.  As I have said before, my son would think I was trying to kill him if I served him something other than pizza with any kind of sauce on it.  Took out a Flatout, coated it very lightly with Ranch dressing, threw on a bit of shredded cheese, and added some turkey pepperoni (shh…don’t tell him), and put it in the toaster over until it was crisp and melty.  That and a bowl of fresh fruit with some cucumber spears, and he was a happy kid with a fairly healthy meal. I love that he enjoys Flatout’s and they have great fiber and protein.

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For my wls friends, I know this looks like a lot of food. I am very near, 4 years out of surgery and can eat a decent portion of food.  This is a salad plate with 2 TBL of beans, 1/4 cup of cauli. rice, 3 oz. of chile verde, and maybe a quarter cup of lettuce with 3 pieces of diced tomato on top. There isn’t even a TBL of cheese on top of the meat.  Maybe 1 1/2 cups of food total. The lettuce and cauli. rice don’t really take up a lot of space for me.  If this plate contained all solid foods, I could do about a cup.  If this plate was a bag of popcorn, chips, cookies, or something else carby and easily digested, I could unfortunately probably do closer to 50 cups.  Okay that may be an exaggeration but, I can do way more of something that breaks down easily like those off limit foods. That is why they are off limit foods for me.


P.S.  I like to grab a few head of cauliflower at the store, and forget them in the fridge until I panic about them going bad.  Then and only then do I drag out the food processer and make cauliflower rice.  I never actually want to use it that night because, honestly I hadn’t planned on using it that night and only touched it because, I was afraid I’d have to throw it away if I waited any longer. So it gets bagged up and put into the freezer for when I actually do want to use it and have absolutely no fresh cauliflower in the house.

 

Fajitas and Zoodles and Salad, oh my! ~By: Steph

Well, I have made it to Wednesday and not killed anyone.  Laying off of the unhealthy carbs kind of makes me feel murderous…I mean less than Mary Sunshine. This shall pass and hopefully my family will survive my mood swings and they in turn do not lock me in a closet. Personally I think mood swings are awesome. My lucky husband gets a new wife each time he walks in the door. SURPRISE, BIG GUY! At least I’m not boring to live with. Hmm…anyhow, let’s move on 😉

I’m in the zone.  Not sure exactly what zone.  I am using our pantry, freezer, and fridge like a pro. Saturday’s leftover grilled steaks became, Monday’s fajitas with fresh peppers, onions, and homemade mango salsa. Wish I’d snapped a photo of it.  It was a very colorful and pretty dish.

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Zoodles w/meatballs & sauce.

Tuesday I grabbed a container of 7% ground beef/hot Italian chicken sausage meatballs and sauce out of the freezer.  Meatballs are one of my favorite foods to make. (I used to make them with 1/2 ground turkey and 1/2 lean ground beef.  I love the chicken so much more.  It has great flavor and the texture is nicer than ground turkey.) As my friend Becky would say, “SQUIRREL!” I got sidetracked with the meatballs and forgot to mention what I made with them.  I zoodlefied (yep that’s the word I’m stickin’ with.) some zucchini, julienned red pepper/onion, sautéed them with cooking spray and seasonings, then set aside.  Added a bit of garlic infused olive oil and mushrooms to the pan and sautéed until golden.  Mixed it all together, added a couple of meatballs and sauce on top. This =’d YUMMINESS.

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Taco salad with mango salsa.

Today’s meal was the leftover mango salsa over a taco salad.  My carby indulgence besides the salsa, was black beans cooked in chicken stock, with chile, cumin and onion. They were delicious on a plain little taco salad.

Simple meals, using up what’s on hand and keeping on track.  I’ve been setting aside a portion of dinner for the next day’s lunch. Making a protein shake for breakfast. Reduced fat cheese, fruit, a slice of lunchmeat, etc have been my snacks. Yay for 3 days of good choices!

Oh, I have to mention how much I love my little appetizer plates and bowls.  I have several different ones and I love eating off of something pretty 🙂 I think my next purchase is going to be little cocktail forks. It feels weird using a fork bigger than the plate.  Using bigger plates leads me to pushing past my limit. In my head I’m still a clean your plate, kinda gal.

Trying to stay accountable and lay it all out here.  It’s a struggle to reset your eating but, we have to value ourselves enough to do it.  There’s no, “good reason”, to knowingly make frequent unhealthy choices.  We can blame our circumstances but, that won’t change anything.   We have to work for what we need. That’s what I’m once again deciding to do.

 

Fat head? ~ By: Stephanie

If you’re anything like me, you think that weight loss will change your thinking.   In my case it has and it hasn’t. My mind is not so friendly to me some days.

I used to sit and obsess over what I was going to eat at a restaurant.  Imagining every yummy bite of food and the big plates. Now I sit down in a restaurant and imagine all of the money I’m going to pay in comparison to what I will eat. I grocery shop for the ingredients in my head and curse the markup!

I used to get into a car and pull the seatbelt all of the way out and say a prayer it would buckle. I now get into the car without a second thought to the seatbelt.

I used to cringe at the thought of my husband or kids, friends meeting me.  I worried about how people would judge them because, of my size. I now am more open to these introductions.

I used to eye a chair or booth with skepticism, wondering if I’d fit into it or if it was strong enough to hold me. Wondering if it would look like the table was a shelf for my boobs to rest on.  I now don’t even have these thoughts or much of those things called, “boobs” without an amazing bra!  All hail underwire.

I used to avoid turnstiles like the plague. I would have happily army crawled under them if it was allowed.  When I had to go through one, I’d turn sideways and suck in my tummy. Or have to endure the shame when the person working the turnstile took pity on me and directed me to the little gate off to the side.  I now still turn sideways and have that moment of panic before going through a turnstile. Why? Who knows old habit???

I used to walk into a room and look to see if I was the biggest one there. I now walk into a room and look to see if I’m the biggest one there. SIGH…My Big Guy LOVES when I say, “Am I her size? Would I be her size if I were 4 inches taller and had hips?” these are a few of his faaaavorite things…

I used to have to do contortions to paint my toenails without passing out. I now can easily paint my toes like a normal person. I can also now see my toenails when I glance down.  That’s a pretty nifty accomplishment.

I used to look in the mirror and see someone a little smaller than I actually was.  I now look in the mirror and see someone larger than I  am. Yeah, gotta love it. I’d get rid of this mind if I wasn’t so attached to the slivers I have left of it.  I’m a mom, I lost most of that thing, years ago.

I used to wear capri pants and flip flops in the middle of winter. I didn’t own a jacket.  I now wear thermals under my jeans, topped by snow pants and 6 pair of socks, while trying to fight the urge to climb into the oven, if the temperature drops below 70.  Btw, my mind tells me I wouldn’t fit in the oven. It may actually be right this time.

I used to hate shopping for clothes, dreaded having to try them on and see myself in those evil, tri-fold mirrors. I now love shopping for clothes and trying them on.  I just wish I had a little fashion elf in my pocket, that would put it’s itty bitty hand on it’s hip and say, “Girl, don’t you even THINK about going there.” when I pick something strange.

I used to think that everything would be magically different if I just lost weight.  I now know that while many things change, we still have the same struggles as before. Only now we must learn to deal with them WITHOUT food.  I think that was one of the toughest lessons I learned in this process.  Weight loss isn’t like rubbing a genie’s lamp. If it was, I’d ask that genie to shrink and iron my birthday suit. It is a physical, and emotional process.  Relationships will be affected.  Your coping skills are affected.  The way you view yourself will be affected.

My Big Guy and I went through some serious struggles in the first 1 1/2 years after my wls. After a lifetime of being big, it felt strange to be “normal” size. I allowed people to cross boundaries because, I didn’t know how to respond to compliments.  On the outside I seemed more confident and willing to step out of my comfort zone. On the inside I was falling apart.  Dealing with life is hard when you lose the one thing that always gave you comfort…FOOD.  We had kind of split up but, like any tumultuous relationship, food kept pulling me back in.  I still was attracted to food.  I couldn’t just give food up.  We had too many years and memories together. There was a constant battle between my mind and my tummy. I was becoming very depressed. Putting on an act so that my outside seemed perfectly together.  It’s an exhausting way to live.  I pushed my husband away.  Doubted his sincerity when he complimented me.  It took a toll on our marriage.  I was trying to figure out who I was becoming and Big Guy was forced to adjust each time something changed.  I am grateful to God for holding us together and I am grateful to my husband for his willingness to go to counseling with me.  It strengthened our relationship in every way.  It definitely didn’t happen over night but, it was worth every bit of effort we put into it. We are both very aware of the fact that God worked on our marriage and our hearts.

Another hurdle I am still trying to clear is, the way I view myself.  I still see myself as larger than I am. I don’t see myself up near my highest weight but, about 40 pounds heavier than I am.  I can go to a store, try clothes on (Usually grabbing sizes too big for me before admitting I need the smaller ones.) and buy them.  Bring them home hang them up and then the panic sets in.  I look at the clothes on the hanger and can’t really grasp that they fit me.  I start to doubt myself and talk myself out of wearing them because, of how I’ll look.  Case in point, my Easter dress.  I loved it in the store.  Tried it on, got opinions, came home tried it on again and got compliments on it. Then as days went by I started freaking out about wearing it.  I was going to return it.  I’m so glad I didn’t.  I actually felt put together and pretty in it after I saw the pictures.

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You see, I don’t know what I look like aside from pictures. The person I see in the mirror and the person I see in a picture of myself are NOT the same size.  For me to truly see myself, I have to see a photograph.  I still have weight to lose and I’m okay with that. I will never have a perfectly flat tummy and I’m okay with that. We will not even talk about my arms and thighs but, I’m okay with them.  The one thing I pray will change, is my view of myself.  It’s something I am willing to work towards.

What are your non-scale related struggles, relating to your weight loss?  I think we all must have some.  Maybe not, it could just be me.  I could be unique like the majestic platypus.

 

 

 

 

 

Better late than never :) By Steph

IMG_20130814_103913 This is me right after our vacation in the stripes. The other two are pics of clothes I wore TIGHTLY prior to weight loss.

Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me, happy birthday dear Meeeeee, okay you get the point. Well, I am a few days late but, better late than never. Right?

I did my big kicking re-gain’s ass weigh in on Wednesday my 40th birthday. In the 5 weeks between my challenge of getting back to logging my food, working out and eating better, I lost 13.6 of my 16 pound regain. Leaves me with a mere 2.4 pounds to lose and put this nasty little episode behind me. I’m proud of the outcome. No, I didn’t lose 16 pounds in 5 weeks but, I kicked butt and did it the right way. A lot of exercise, meal planning and praying for help. There is nothing to feel bad about there, in my opinion anyway. Oh wait…mines the only one that counts since, it’s my body, my challenge and my life! Okay God gets ultimate claim to it but, still for all accounts and purposes, I’ll claim second on that list!

I’ve had some motivators who probably don’t even realize they’ve motivated me. A lady from church is on her own weight loss journey and reading her check ins, ups and downs, has kept me realistic and focused on the fact that we all have our struggles and our successes. A great friend since high school has stopped taking a backseat in her life and made proactive steps towards improving her life. I see her looking to the Lord, taking a leap of faith and finding a new job, getting out there and coaching her little girls soccer team and just being an all around inspiration. My husband’s faith in me and my capabilities, even when I’m doubting them. The way he works for our family which oh yeah includes me! If he thinks I’m worth working for, shouldn’t I think the same way? My bestie co-blogger (well yeah we suck at the quantity but, it’s all about the quality…right Clint?) and his own struggle with and then stomping all over of re-gain! Plus the numerous other successes he’s had lately. Another friend who has been through the wringer off and on lately and just keeps smiling and moving forward PLUS, joining me on a get our butts in gear challenge and she lost quite a few pounds herself in this time period! If you look for it there are plenty examples of why perseverance is so important to us. We easily recognize it in others but, some of us…OKAY ME ME ME…find it hard to see in ourselves.

Went to the coast camping with my hubby and our 9 month old Bear (okay technically he’s our German Shepard puppy) and still managed to get a lot of movement in, cook some seriously healthy and delicious meals and enjoy ourselves. Let’s see some highlights from the trip…Bear barked and protected us from oncoming traffic for about 30 miles before Joe lost it and decided he was riding in his kennel in the trailer the rest of the way to the ocean, I made it to our pit stop without wetting my pants (I drank A LOT of water and iced coffee on the way there.), Joe got pulled into the ocean by Bear and I laughed hysterically, I got pulled into the ocean by Bear and laughed much less before just giving up and enjoying it, I stepped foot in the ocean DURING SHARK WEEK (I know pretty daring since I’m sure the sharks were very aware what week it was!), spent alone time with my guy and Bear of course, took some amazing walks, relaxed, reconnected as a couple, and of course still managed to LOSE WEIGHT on vacation.

The past couple of weeks I reconnected with my inner tomboy and realized I love riding my bike! Joe took us to the park where they have all these hills, jumps, and courses for BMX riding. I have a beach cruiser and a 40 year old body…neither has any kind of shocks! We rode for hours burned a gazillion (yes I logged it and it said a gazillion 😛 on MFP) calories. It was so much fun going on the course and track. It was incredibly awesome realizing I was CAPABLE of doing this! I had so much fun and we went back the following week too. So last weekend was our second week and the highlight was me going down a huge hill and hitting the track at a bad angle and too fast, thus flipping me off my bike into another hill! I was a big girl and there were no tears…I cannot say there were no bruises though. I am still sporting some pretty nice mementos of the “trip”. We kept riding another 2 hours after that and it was a great family day. I am now on the search for a mountain bike because, well shocks would be really, REALLY, nice to have if I’d like to keep my knees and spine in decent shape (I’m sort of fond of those two things sooo…). I am way into the idea of a new bike but, someone is going to have to mud wrestle me to keep me from taking my big booty seat off my beach cruiser and putting it on the new bike! I like it, it’s very comfy…we’re friends.

ResizedImage_1377897957164 Family pic from my birthday dinner. Can you tell my son has his daddy’s smile? lol

For my birthday went out for dinner and had a nice time. Oh plus the restaurant sang happy birthday to me in Japanese and gave me a dessert that my 3 children promptly ate all of. When we left I decided I required some ice cream so we headed to Coldstone Creamery and I had a half of a kids cup of ice cream after dinner, before deciding I probably should stop eating it because, no one likes puking on their birthday and it wasn’t “that kind” of party sooo…I tossed the ice cream instead. It was delicious though 🙂

I am now on my way to achieving my goal weight. I am keeping up the food logging, exercise and healthy choices (most of the time). I’m not giving myself a timeline because, as long as I am moving in the right direction, I really don’t care how long it takes. I’m happy where I am and I feel wonderful so if I lose more living like this, that will be great. If I don’t, well you know what? That will be great too. 40 feels pretty amazing from my vantage point.

Thanks for listening to (okay yes technically reading) my ramblings and hodgepodge of giddy goofiness.1238185_3447216314959_244113364_n

Hugs and good choices,
~Steph

P.S. I should have just kept eating the ice cream and got sick on my birthday. I’ve been sick since the day after with some kind of tummy thing. I have no clue what is up. Yes, this is me feeling sorry for my tummy! lol

“Well here I am” said Reality as it punched me in the face! By: Steph

I am a bad, bad blogger. I apologize for being so hit or miss on my blogging lately. Have I said, “I’m sorry for not being around?” Okay, okay cut me some slack people. Oh wait…that was just me stressing myself out huh? Okay then…here we go, moving forward 🙂

Life has been stressful the past few weeks and in all honesty more like the last several months. I sat down yesterday and took a good account of myself and realized that I haven’t been “the same” since probably December. Things that happened last year took their toll on me and I lost my dedication to myself. I randomly find it chasing me here and there but, I’m crafty and I’m able to easily shake that pesky dedication. I stopped losing weight in December for the most part. I regained a little and lost it back so February/March during the Healthy Family Challenge I had a great loss but, then the desire to work at it waned again. I have to once again say I was fighting depression and it was winning. Maybe it still is in some ways. I regain, I lose most of the regain and then let it slide again. It’s been a pattern the last few months. God and I talk about this and I tell Him “I’m giving this over to you.” but, I’m pretty sure He knows better than I do that, I haven’t, truly done that, even when I really think and hope that I have. Well, here I am again with regain. I’m angry at myself, I’m sad for myself, I’m blaming myself, I’m feeling sorry for myself, I’m…just focused on myself??? Maybe that is where my problem lies? When my eyes are on God life has a lot more clarity for me. Knowing this is the easy part. Finding my way back to implementing it isn’t quite so easy. I can converse with Him about my friends, my family, the world, etc…but, when I’m feeling so much like a failure, I find it hard to ask Him to help me. I know there are a lot of you out there who are reading this and don’t understand why “god” has anything to do with this. For me, GOD has everything to do with it. I know I wouldn’t have come this far and had these changes in my life without Him. Trust me I tried that for the first 33 years of my life…it didn’t work for me. I must also say that I in no way blame God for this lapse in communication because, I know it rests solely on my shoulders. This isn’t a lesson in my Christianity, it’s just a fact of who I am and how I function I can’t really blog honestly if I leave my faith out of it because, it shapes who I am. If I’m not blogging honestly then what is the point of blogging at all? I guess it would then become more like “creative writing by the creatively writing challenged” instead of a blog.

I’m taking steps to remedy this.

1) I’m meal planning again. No more flying by the seat of my pants and just whimsically deciding to eat fairy dust because, it’s in the pantry. (That darn fairy dust is really carb heavy and causes cravings!)

2) I’m going to restart my restart of my restart to working out again. I mean just randomly running C25K isn’t going to cut it, I need to go back to the basics and get real workouts back into my life. I feel better, I have a better attitude and it’s one of my best prayer times.

3) I’m going to log my meals on mfp and not worry about what anyone has to say about my eating choices. If they don’t understand my lifestyle then why does it bother me that they comment on it? I may even GASP close my food diary to the public.

4) I’m asking for help from Clint, from Joe, from my kids. If they see me mindlessly nibbling they need to point it out. (I will be attaching a picture on here so if you dear readers see someone who vaguely resembles me walking down the street eating something carby and delicious, feel free to chastise, smack or otherwise heckle me/them. You may also want to run incase it’s NOT me and they are carrying pepper spray!)

5) I’m going to remember how hard I worked to get to where I am now. How good it feels to be able to shop in non-plus sized sections of stores. How amazing it is to be able to go out and play with the kids. What it feels like to feel confident enough to ride the Harley with Joe. I’m going to remember what it feels like to have my life back. I’m also going to let go of all the negativity surrounding this surgery. I worked hard before surgery and I worked hard after it. Now that I’m NOT working at it like every weight loss surgery patient HAS TO DO (despite the claims of “you took the easy way out”, my results are the same as anyone who hasn’t had the surgery…I gained weight! I am starting to recognize that I was playing into peoples idea of surgery being the easy way. I was thinking well, I don’t have to log every bite I put in my mouth, I don’t have to exercise 5-6 days a week, I don’t have to work at this. Umm hmm…we see how well that worked. It’s not the easy way out, it just allows you to keep your weight loss moving enough to get you to the point where you physically are able to exercise and help yourself. There are always the exceptions to the rule though. I mean we all know a 110 pound 6 foot tall couch potato who eats 6 Big Macs a day and never gains a pound. Just like there are WLS (weight loss surgery) folks who drop and keep off a ton of weight while never exercising a day in their life. The people in these examples are the EXCEPTIONS. For most of the world, rules are rules, don’t take in more calories than you burn and if you want to eat a bit extra, then you better move your rear end if you want it to not wind up on your rear end!

6) I’m going to find alternatives to eating when I’m stressed yet, too busy to even do 10 minutes of stair climbing or 50 squats. I would love some input on this one. Prayer is a definite one I will implement, standing on one leg for 60 seconds trying to balance without falling and cracking my head open is a suggestion…thank you Clint S.P. for that one! Any other 60 second or less fixes that I can do with a herd of children here and a noise level of a small rock concert like oh…Woodstock? Umm and no Super Gluing my lips together is totally out…how would I yell at my children tell my kids I love them?

7) Venting on my blog…oh wait…check I just did that one!

Anyone out there who has dealt with regain and stopped it before it got out of control, I would love to hear what tools and strategies helped you the most. Doesn’t matter if it’s a wls peep or not, we are all in this together. Are we not?

I thank you all for listening…reading…falling asleep two lines in or filing your nails while on this page. (It all shows up as a “view” to me!)

Soon to report that the final 30 stinking pounds of this journey are GONE! There is nothing I can think of that would be more exciting to blog about than the post titled…IN MAINTENANCE GOAL REACHED!!! So, stay tuned folks and be chatty. Heckle, cheer on or just tell me your story!

Reeling from Reality (who packs a mighty mean punch).

~Steph

PS people, be expecting fun food vessel pics this week. I am making avocado boats, stuffed zucchini, bell pepper Philly Cheesesteak cups, and bell pepper tacos. They should be cute, portion controlled and tasty…I’ll keep you updated!

One of Those Excellent Days!

pb3jonathan-lucroy

I am not going to get all dramatic and say today was the perfect day. Let’s be honest. Many things suck and magical genies are as scarce as unicorns so perfect should not describe any day.

It was pretty excellent for me, especially if you consider my own personal idiosyncrasies.

I am a Milwaukee Brewers nerd. It is that simple. I love them but it isn’t as simple as being a sports freak or anything like that. (although that is part of it) It is the one thing that in some way everyone in the family has a connection to or fondness for.

I have a huge family. We all get pretty pumped up for Brewers season. The cool thing is we seem to stay more in touch and the Brewers are the reason. Something to rally around or to commiserate about or even complain and be colorful about it. It is excellent to do that with family is it not?

I know this might not be completely relatable to the audience but people all like something a whole bunch so it is in some way. Right?

Now the other thing-y that makes this story come together. In order to proceed through my get healthy journey I have discovered that I only work through my issues if I am “on the program” all the time. The only leeway I leave myself is when I hit planned milestone moments in my weight loss. I have a cheat day type thing where I let loose with whatever my head dreams up during the planning stages. This last milestone was a big one for me. Getting under 300 pounds. (or my 8th grade weight)

I hit it on Sunday. (299.3) Wooohooooo!

Today was the day of eating stupid and not feeling badly about it. Today was hot dog day! Good meat market hotdogs and onion rings and coleslaw and baked beans and some invention called pretzel buns and…………..drum roll please! Peanut Butter Pie!

This is an important thing for me. It wasn’t until recently though that I really understood why. It has taught me that I need to be able to enjoy something in the food part of life once in a while and then be able to turn it off and move back into the healthy trick. Seems simple but it was not always simple for me.

Back to the Brewers. Excellently crusty old Bob Uecker started my Brewers year as he always does by saying “Welcome to Milwaukee Brewers Championship Season.” It does not matter that he has never been correct or that it is a huge longshot to happen this season. It makes me feel awesome to hear him say it. The truth is it makes me feel like a 13 year old kid again who would spend half of many summer days playing wiffle ball in the back yard with Donnie and Paul.

If you never experienced that or anything similar I am truly sorry. Those memories are golden.

Most of the game was good and fun to watch. Not great as the good guys were behind all day. It got exciting for me when the crew rallied and went ahead 4-3 in the 8th inning. Excellent Canadian John Axford who used to have a sweet mustache and now a sweet beard came on to hopefully finish an awesome game. Apparently the baseball gods did not know it was his 30th birthday. After two outs were recorded one swing of a Colorado Rockies bat sent that small white ball over the fence to tie the game.

Now let me make this story all about me and two great sisters. They went to spring training a few weeks back and while there purchased for me a Milwaukee Brewers Jonathan Lucroy T-shirt. It was excellent and sweet because I did not own a Brewers shirt that was within 4 sizes of fitting me. You better believe I was wearing that baby today.

Extra innings and the Brewers are up to bat. One out and the bases loaded. As luck would have it my man Jon Lucroy walked up to the plate. Deep drive to center field. Brewers win. BREWERS WIN!!!!!

If there are anything as silly as baseball god’s maybe Mr. Axford had to take one for the team to make my day so damn excellent?

Probably not, but that is the story I am going with. Have a good day. I know I did! I can’t wait for this championship season to continue on. -Clint