Progress Update – as of August 16, 2014 and August 23, 2014

Height: 5’7″

August 16:
Current Weight: 297.2 lbs
Gain: 5.3 lbs
Current BMI: 46.5
Gain: 0.8

August 23:
Current Weight: 294.2 lbs
Loss: 3.0 lbs
Current BMI: 46.1
Loss: 0.4

So, an interesting couple of weeks. A big gain and a big (but smaller) loss. I should say that I don’t know why this happening, but I am sure I do. When I look back on my week, I remember making healthy choices and trying to exercise. However, I have not been tracking my food or exercise religiously like I used to and I think, like most people, when I’m not keeping track I vastly underestimate the amount of food that I’m eating and overestimate the amount of exercise, as well as my exertion level. Hence, the pounds sneak back on. 

What I Did Well This Week:
1) I thought I was making healthy choices. Maybe I wasn’t, but I’m trying, that’s the key. 

What I Can Improve On:
1) Same old, same old. Better eating, more sleep, more exercise. My main thing is sugar. I love sugar. (Who doesn’t?) I love to bake, it’s my Achilles’ heel. So, for the next week, I am trying to do NO sugar. It’s going to be hard. I don’t want to never have sugar ever again, but I really need to reduce my intake. So, let’s see, let’s see if I can do no sugar for awhile and then gradually put it back into my life. 

How I Feel:
More mad at myself than discouraged. I know what I need to do to lose weight, but I am finding it increasingly difficult to do so. I think the reason that I did so well when I was travelling was because a) I didn’t have a car, so I had to either walk or bus (which required planning) everywhere I went and b) I wasn’t working, I spent my days walking around tourist sites. I am finding it difficult to balance my work with my life responsibilities and trying to squeeze in exercise on top of that is proving to be even harder. Truthfully, I could make time for exercise, but I’m so exhausted when I get home from work that it’s extremely difficult to motivate myself to do anything besides just relaxing on the couch. The silver lining in this is that, even though I bus to work, I walk to and from the bus station almost every day, so I usually get at least a 20 minute walk in every day. Not much, but it’s something. 

Cheers, happy losing! 

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Progress Update – as of August 9, 2014

Height: 5’7″
Current Weight: 291.9 lbs
Loss: 0.3 lbs
Current BMI: 45.7
Loss: 0.1

It’s not a lot, but HEY, a loss is a loss! After slowly going up over the last couple of weeks, I am happy to see it going down. Anyway, onto a more serious topic…

I am sure that all of you know, by now, that the brilliant and devastatingly funny Robin Williams sadly left this world on Monday. To be honest, I am heartbroken. He was one of my favourite actors, a staple of my childhood, and the thought that such a brilliant man suffered so much pain just breaks my heart into a million pieces. 

As a result of this tragedy, over the last few days I have been poring over articles talking about all facets of mental health: depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, bi-polar disorder and addiction, to name a few. And I realized, with absolute certainty, that I too, am an addict. Except that my vice isn’t cocaine or heroin or a bottle of scotch. It’s food. 

I obsess about food and I crave it all the time, everything. Sometimes, all it takes is another person mentioning food or reading about a character eating or watching a television show with a decadent meal to make me crave that food. And I don’t just crave it, I obsess. I have come to realize that what I thought were just normal cravings are, in actuality, unhealthy obsessions, symptoms of a greater addiction. Food addiction seems tame compared to an addiction to alcohol or gambling or cocaine, but in truth, it can destroy just as many lives, albeit usually at a lot slower pace. I have suspected for some time that I have this addiction, but now I have gotten to a point where enough’s enough. I am going to see a therapist. 

What I Did Well This Week:
1) Well, I exercised as much as I could. 
2) I tried to eat well. The key word in that sentence is tried. 

What I Can Improve On:
1) Making exercise even more of a priority. I have been slacking a bit in that department, probably because I am so tired all the time. 
2) Making better choices with my eating and seeking help and therapy to break my addiction to food and stop obsessing. 
3) Getting more sleep. I didn’t do so well with that goal last week. 

How I Feel:
Optimistic and hopeful and encouraged by my weight loss.

But also very, very sad. I know I didn’t know Robin Williams and it seems silly to mourn someone you never knew, but he’s one of those actors whose face was a constant throughout my childhood (and into adolescence and adulthood) and he seemed so warm and genuine that I felt like he was a friend. 

So all I have to say is this: if you are hurting, please seek help. Please talk to a trusted friend or a teacher or a family member or a licensed mental health professional. If you are in dire need and you feel that you have no one to turn to, please call one of the following numbers:

13 11 14 – Australia

1-800-273-TALK (8255) – Canada and the United States
09 522 999 – New Zealand (within Auckland)
0800 543 354 – New Zealand (outside of Auckland)
08457 90 90 90 – United Kingdom

And remember, “All my love to you, poppet. You’re going to be alright.” 

Progress Update – as of August 2, 2014

Height: 5’7″
Current Weight: 292.2
Gain: 1.9 lbs
Current BMI: 45.8
Gain: 0.3

I almost put “current height”. As if my height fluctuates these days. Haha.

I have also switched my weigh-in day to Saturday, as that is now the day that I attend my Weight Watchers meetings. (Didn’t I say it would change?) It might change again, but for now Saturday is easier for me with my work schedule.

I gained again this week. BUT I think it’s possible that it’s water retention. I have significantly increased my exercise in the past couple of weeks and this past week I was noticing that I felt really dizzy a lot of the time, even when I was sitting down. It seems to have gone away (but of course I’ll watch it to ensure it isn’t a symptom of something more sinister) but I think that I probably wasn’t increasing my water intake to match my exercise. And, as you probably all know, not drinking water can actually cause you to “gain” weight – or at least the number on the scale increases – because your body holds onto the water you do have to try and retain it.

I am hoping that’s what it is. However, I need to get better control of my eating. Exercise has never been a problem for me. I mean, I definitely haven’t done it regularly since I was a kid (excepting the last few months, of course) but I’ve never been someone who hates sports and exercise. I love to dance, swim, bike, rollerblade, horseback ride, run, ski, skate, and play soccer, basketball, volleyball, teenis etc. However, because I have lost flexibility and am carrying more weight, I have found that doing some of these activities (particularly those involving jumping) put a lot more pressure on my joints than they used to and, as a result, I am very prone to injury. (For example, in the past 10 years I have  sprained both ankles several times each, sprained my wrist, crushed my meniscus [a little disk in your knee], sprained toes and broken off a piece of my ankle bone (twice!). Gross.)

So, long story short, I love exercise. But my main problem is, and always has been, eating. I find that when I exercise I sometimes give myself too much of a free pass with my eating. For example, I’ll think “Oh, I can have this donut because I went for a bike ride today”. And while I strongly believe that it’s important to indulge once in awhile, I give myself too much freedom to indulge and thus, fall into a “one step forward, two steps back” kind of pattern. So, I’ve got the exercise thing down (and I’m really enjoying myself!) but it’s time to really focus on the eating.

What I Did Well This Week:
1) Well, I have been exercising almost every day. I used to go about exercise quite the wrong way. I would do the same routine every single day and I think half the reason that I would often fall off that wagon is because I got bored. This time around, I am trying new things. I have been swimming a lot lately, something I love, and I have been riding my bike, something I haven’t done in ages. (Although, to be honest, it is getting a little uncomfortable. I tend to carry the majority of my weight in my mid-section and I actually have a really bony butt for being a big gal, so riding for too long gets a bit uncomfortable!) I dusted off my old rollerblades (although I haven’t used them yet, oops) and I got myself a pair of walking poles so that I can do Nordic walking (similar to cross-country skiing, but walking, but you use the poles to push yourself along and walk your arms). In short, I am enjoying the summer weather immensely (it’s going by far too quickly!!!) and exercising as much as possible outside, enjoying the fresh air.

What I Can Improve On:
1) Eating better, as I said previously, is my main priority. I just need to make smarter choices and to allow myself to indulge less than I’m doing now. I’m trying to cut back on sugar in general, since I eat way too much of it, but I’m finding it very, very difficult. That stuff is addictive. However, one little bit at a time and I will get there.
2) I also need to get more sleep. I average about 6 hours a night. For some people that is probably plenty, but for me it’s just not. I feel really tired a lot of time and the fact that my job is basically completely sedentary doesn’t help my fatigue. The big thing for me is to turn off the screens. I don’t really watch TV (uh, well, except Netflix) but I am a sucker for the internet (Buzzfeed articles, anyone? Addictive.) and so I spend far too much time on here, often at the expense of my sleep. So I’m trying to cut down on my screen time, especially before bed, and do something else like read a book.

How I Feel:
Positive, in general. I am discouraged about the numbers on the scale, but at least I know where it’s coming from, it’s not as though I’ve been perfect and am not seeing any progress. I know that I am making really good steps with my exercise and I know where I have to go from here.

Cheers, happy losing!

(Also, I have just finished Breaking Bad [oh man, so good] and now I’ve moved onto Orange is the New Black and I’m obsessed. Anyone else?)