Tag Archive | weight loss

Daily Bread (#32)

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This week I had what was only my second weekly weight gain that I have had since starting the program, but I know why.  I love mystery in general, but not when it comes to improving my health.  Three things contributed to my gain:  take out Thai food, shrimp tacos with sweet potato fries, and not exercising at all because of the terrible air quality.  I enjoyed the food, so maybe that was almost worth it, but the bad air had no positives to it.  With so many losing homes and loved ones in the devastating fires, it feels a little bad to whine about the smoky air, but breath is live, and when we can not breathe, it feels like we are dying.

I do not want to die.  At least not too soon.  I have more to do, not the least of which is trying to improve our environment so that our planet might continue to sustain life.

I WILL get on the stationary bike this week, and will meet the Thanksgiving dinner challenge with resolve.  I had a melt down yesterday, faced with the sight of the dinner rolls my wife had purchased for the meal.  After some tears and conversation, she froze the rolls and agreed to skip the mashed potatoes.  She is so wonderfully supportive and understood that the stuffing and gravy would be enough of a challenge for me.  I can avoid dessert easily. I have never really liked pumpkin pie anyway.   We are also having roasted brussels sprouts and I am roasting the sweet potatoes rather than coating them with butter, brown sugar, and marshmallows.  The kids are bring a salad and a healthier green bean casserole.  My plan is to measure out a small serving of dressing, a tablespoon or two of cranberry sauce, and a couple of dollops of gravy.  Turkey is a really good protein, low fat and low calorie, so I will have a healthy serving of that.  After that I will stick to the veggies.  I will likely go a bit over my calorie budget today, but that is OK.  Today is a day to feel thankful and not deprived.  I am grateful for my improving health and I have a strong desire not to sabotage my progress.  Wish me luck and grace!

L’Chaim

(My stats for the last week – up 2.2 pounds, drank over 7 gallons of water and exercised for <30 minutes.  My total weight loss so far is 61.8 pounds.)

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Daily Bread (Week 16)

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Food, glorious food!  Breakfast = 215 calories.

I was so excited to eat some real food, but, wow, it was disappointing.  The hard boiled eggs were good enough and so were the baby heirloom tomatoes.  The sugar snap peas were tough and stringy, however, and they got stuck in my teeth.  The carrots were boring and a little slimy after being too long in the fridge.

Before I began this program, I tried to stop eating foods unless I liked them.  I was reasonably successful at that.  Slimy carrots (even when washed very well) never made the cut.  Stringy snap peas would be left on my plate.  I would not bother with bread if it wasn’t soft and tasty.   Stale chips were’t appealing.  The meal replacements I survived on for the last 16 weeks required a different approach. They taste OK I guess, but I think of them more as medicine or fuel than as actual food.  I would not say I “liked” them.  As I transition to eating real food again, I need to figure out what my new relationship to it will be.  Will food be merely fuel or will taste matter? I still don’t see the point of eating food I don’t like when there are other options available.  For breakfast tomorrow and the rest of the week, I am going to have the eggs, increase the tomatoes, and forget the stuff that did not taste good to me.  We will see how it all goes.

Last night we spent some time talking about what we do (or can do) when we are getting close to what we call the F___ -it moment, those times when we are tempted to hit the chips, the cookies, or the cheeseburgers; and throw moderation to the winds.  Some of the stories were moving and others were hilarious.  What I do, sometimes, when it is hard, is to think of someone I know who has done these kind of programs multiple times and then always goes back to old habits.  I am NOT going to be like “X” I say to myself.  It helps that “X” has many other qualities that I also don’t want to emulate.

I remembered a song this morning, which will also help me I think.  Woody Guthrie’s Union Maid has long been a favorite of mine.  Below is a video of the song, with Woody’s son Arlo, talking about when and why it was written.

Union Maid

With apologies to Woody and Arlo and stalwart union members everywhere, here’s my new theme song:

Oh, you can’t scare me, I’m sticking to the program,
I’m sticking to the program, I’m sticking to the program.
Oh, you can’t scare me, I’m sticking to the program,
I’m sticking to the program ’til the day I die.
There once was a program maid, she never was afraid
Of chips and dips and her sometimes slips, and the refrigerator she wanted to raid.
She went to the Kaiser hall when a meeting it was called,
And when temptation come ’round
She always stood her ground.
Oh, you can’t scare me, I’m sticking to the program,
I’m sticking to the program, I’m sticking to the program.
Oh, you can’t scare me, I’m sticking to the program,
I’m sticking to the program ’til the day I die.
L’Chaim!

(My stats for the last week – down 3.2 pounds, drank over 7 gallons of water and exercised for a total of 210 minutes.  My total weight loss so far is 42 pounds.)

Daily Bread (Week 14)

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Just two more weeks without any real food.  It is so tempting to start a little bit early.  But I have been 100% on plan the entire time and this is the home stretch.  Except of course it isn’t.  Even eating real food, I will need to plan and stick with that plan.  For next week, we are supposed to come up with the one real food meal we will eat for breakfast each morning.  Plan A for me will be 2 hard boiled eggs and 2 ounces each of carrots, tomatoes and snap peas for a total of 200 calories.  Our facilitator said that, just in case our plan A doesn’t work for some reason, we should have a Plan B (still legal, at least with the current Supreme Court).  My Plan B will be 2 3/4 ounces of turkey breast and 3 ounces of spinach and 5 ounces of mushrooms salted/steamed in 1 teaspoon of butter, with a dash of garlic powder, for a total of  234 calories.  I hope plan A works, as I don’t want to cook every morning.  Luckily, one of my sons loaned me his scale, so I can weigh the food and be super-accurate about calories.

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The whole idea stresses me.  It is so much more complicated, and I have appreciated the ease of not having any choices with the meal replacements.  Then again, we make choices every single day of our lives, and not just about food.  I have always tried to make good choices, just not always about food.  It is time to ramp up my skills.

Some of you have enjoyed my nostaligia pics.  Here is one more:

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This photo is from 1968 0r 1969 in the UC Berkeley dorm room of a friend.  I am the one sitting on the bed, cigarette in hand, ashtray by my knees.  Part of my weight gains over the years were due to the multiple times I quit smoking.  At least I managed to do that before it killed me.

 

 

 

 

 

 

(My stats for the last week – down  2.3 pounds, drank 7 1/2 gallons of water and exercised for a total of 360.  My total weight loss so far is 40.4 pounds.)

Daily Bread (Week 10)

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Whew!  Our regular facilitator was back this week and we greeted her warmly.  I flashed on the old TV show, “Welcome Back, Kotter.”  We did behave rather like the “sweat-hogs” while she was gone, but who cares?  (And no, I don’t want a Melania Trump jacket.  I care about families and children, Muslims, black and brown people, people with disabilities, fat people, and my GLBT siblings.  I don’t, however, care much about decorum).  Johanna got us back on focus really quickly and all was well.  Well that is except for her use of the phrase “New Normal.”   She meant our permanent lifestyle changes, but I flashed on the “This is not normal” refrain of the resistance.

I was also very heartened with the warmth that the group welcomed me back after my week away.  I love these people.  We have grown so close in these few weeks as we try to live into this challenging lifestyle change. Our individual lives are very different, but whether they are crying or laughing, my heart is with them.

My week away at General Assembly was, as always, a way to reaffirm my faith in Unitarian Universalism as a tradition of justice and hope.  This year was particularly moving as we confronted white supremacy both within our movement and in the wider world.  Listen to the Ware Lecture with Brittany Packet, Sunday Morning Worship, or the Service of the Living Tradition, all of which were particularly moving, inspiring, and challenging.  Ours is not a casual faith.

It was also wonderful to see so many old friends.  And it was a little awkward mixing up my shakes in the plenary hall or a workshop.  I did a lot of explaining of the program, and although virtually everyone I spoke to about it was supportive, I still felt self conscious at times. The plane rides were stressful, and it was hard to drink enough water on the travel days.  My CPAP machine didn’t work (I stupidly did not bring the humidifier  attachment and this new machine doesn’t work without it) so I did not sleep at all well.  I attended a buffet luncheon/meeting, sat in the hotel bar sipping a sparkling water, and I stayed completely on plan.  Hurray for me!

So hard to focus on myself, on my own health, when our country and our world is slipping into so much horror.  I wonder if my marriage will stay valid, and I wonder if my friends will even survive. I weep for the parents and children who have been cruelly separated.  Saturday, I will go to the Richmond Detention Center for a protest rally.  Since it isn’t a march, I can bring a chair and sit while bearing witness.  I must do what I can, but I also need to stay strong in my focus on my own body and health.  It will be good practice for working to bring our country into a healthier place.

L’Chaim

 

 

(My stats for the last 2 weeks – down 5.3 pounds, drank I am not sure how much water and exercised for only a total of 280 minutes.  My total weight loss so far is 29.5 pounds.  I am now under 300 pounds, a milestone for me in this journey. Huzzah!)

Shrinking, Growing

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Am I shrinking

Or am I growing?

Both I think.

 

Outside I am changing

Slowly but surely

Reclaiming a shape

That will serve me better.

At least that’s the plan

 

The lavish blooms

Have faded

Winters have been hard.

Small seeds planted

Carefully

Might grow

To just the right size

 

Tend the ground

Tend your soul

Resurrection

Regeneration

Only takes

A miracle

Of mindfulness.

I believe

In miracles.