November 17, 2007

Do You Know the Muffin Man, the Muffin Man, the Muffin Man...

*Low-fat brownie points if you know the reference in the title.

A couple of years ago I watched the movie Match Point. I'd picked it up on a whim one weekend when the kiddo was gone to his father's. It's a Woody Allen film - a director I don't usually necessarily get or care much for - about a young, male tennis pro who's at a crossroad in life and looking for change. The movie stars Scarlett Johansson, an actress I really didn't know much about at the time but came to find out is one of the hotties the males of our species ogle. Apparently she's got the "best boobs in Hollywood". Do you know what else she has? A muffin top.

At the time I was watching Match Point I might have heard the term "muffin top" only once or twice, yet during the one hot, sexy scene in the movie as her shirt moved up from the waistband of her pants, her muffin top was exposed. For the first time ever I sat there looking at an actress adored by millions and thinking to myself "Wow, I guess we don't all have to be rail thin to be attractive."

Now don't get me wrong here, I'm certainly no Scarlett Johansson. Not by any stretch of the imagination. But it was comforting for a moment seeing a very beautiful, talented woman who not only had but was showing some curves. It sickens me how skewed the view of the perfect body shape is. Take for example Courtney Yates, the sickeningly anorexic looking contestant on Survivor China. This girl is wicked thin. And you can't tell me it's all from playing the game. She was a rail when the show first started and is simply wasting away to nothing. Her co-contestant Frosti thought it was "really cool that somebody like Courtney" would like him. Gah!

So now that I've rambled on about actresses and reality teevee show contestants, you're probably wondering what in the hell this has to do with anything related to this blog. Well, I'll tell you. I have a muffin top. I've also got big boobs, but that doesn't balance it out I'm afraid. And then there's my not exactly toned up abdomen that really bugs me, but that's a subject for another day.

Back to my muffin top. It really bugs me. And heading into the heart attack on a plate feeding frenzy we like to call the "holiday season", I'm trying to figure out how to keep my already rolling muffin top from expanding any further. When I reach for a muffin - a real one, from the bakery case - the top's the best part. But this one I'm carrying around my middle... it's got to go!

Not sure how to go about getting rid of it, but that's what's on my mind right now.

Any suggestions?

November 12, 2007

Slackers-R-Us (Really Just Me!)

I started this blog in February and only posted a few things through the beginning of April. Then I stopped. Why? Because I'm a big, fat slacker. That's right, slacker.

Can you spell slacker? S-L-A-C-K-E-R. There, I knew ya could!

The original intent of this blog was to track my journey to a better, healthier me through diet, exercise, and overall self awareness. Having accomplished none of these things in the past 6 months I seriously considered just scrapping this site alltogether. Until I started reading about the changes Kevin is trying to incorporate back into his life, that is. And then, of course because that's just how she does things, Hilly had to go and work up yet another blog for me to read about her self journey.

Well, with all this peer pressure, there was just no way I could close the doors and not play along. You see - I am not just a slacker, I'm a follower as well - and I succumb to peer pressure at the drop of a hat.

So, with that in mind, because obviously having to post on my other blog every day during the month of November isn't enough to think about, I am relaunching Girl Redefined. Let's see how it goes this time, eh?

April 5, 2007

Ichi, Ni, San... Karate

Last week the kiddo started karate. As a full member at the YMCA, the class is free, and since I listened to him ask to try kick boxing all summer long as we drove by the local dojo I figured I'd start him in karate and see where it went from there. The Sensei has been instructing for some 38 years or so, and is tough. During the first lesson he opened the class to the parents saying "it will help your children to learn what they are learning... and it might do you good too." So, this week, I took him up on the offer.

Tuesday I went prepared to do some karate. What I was not prepared for was feeling like a total klutz. I mean how hard could jabbing and jumping and kicking be? Let me tell you. It's hard! Really hard. This takes complete concentration, focus, and coordination. Any little distraction, and it's all over. No wonder he's so adament about "no talking". We stretched, and did I ever find out what muscles I haven't used in forever. We punched. We blocked. We kicked. We did them all together. And I had a blast.

And today, with muscles still aching from Tuesday, I did it all again.

It's a great workout, and one I get to share with my son. Finally I've found something that makes me happy, makes me feel good, and is good for me. And I'm sticking to it.

March 11, 2007

Ouch! I Fell Off the Wagon

This weekend has been awful. Not in the sense that anything really bad has been happening. It's basically just been like any other weekend. Except for it's the first weekend since trying to take better care of myself that I've had the kid at home with me too. Not sure that really has anything to do with it, but maybe it does.

Friday night was pretty much uneventful since I was up at the butt crack of dawn Friday morning. I pushed myself to stay awake until around 11:30pm in hopes that I'd actually sleep past 5am. It worked. I was up at 6:15am instead. {sigh}

On Saturday we did the semi-usual routine around here. Straightened up, did some laundry (only one load since the dryer is out and I had to borrow the neighbor's), then hit Costco and Walmart to stock up for the month. We goofed around the rest of the afternoon and evening, but by the time I put the kiddo to bed I was bouncing off the walls. Literally. All I wanted to do was jump in the car, crank up the tunes to ear deafening levels and drive............. FAST. That obviously wasn't an option with the little man upstairs sleeping, so I tried goofing off on the computer a bit. Ran into Groove online and spewed my craziness for awhile. When I could see it wasn't helping, and fearing I'd ruin his evening if I kept whining, I said g'nite and plopped in front of the TV.

Something he said, though, kept resonating within. Self loathing? I didn't feel like I was trapped like that last night, though I'm the first to admit I do suffer from that more often than I care to admit. It was more of a trapped feeling. Like I couldn't shut off my brain, wanted to get out of the house, and basically felt like a caged animal. Not a good feeling. I tried having a few drinks, and even tried taking a hot shower. Didn't help. So what did I end up doing? Stuffing Ding Dong's down my throat... at 10:30pm... then going to bed. Great!!

To top it off I haven't exercised all weekend, have been really bad about my water intake, ate the wrong foods, and suffered a minor migraine yesterday. Only one thing seems to sate me anymore. Not talking on the phone. Not being on the computer. Not watching TV. Not hanging out with the kid. Not drinking. Not smoking. Just eating.

I know it's not hunger, it's boredom and restlessness and frustration all rolled into one. Like I told Groove I feel like I'm borderline ADD. No amount of stimulation seems to be enough. I look for outlets like reading, cleaning, video games, puzzles, but none of them helps either. So I go day to day, from one thing to the other, without any sense of accomplishment, fulfillment, or excitement and end up turning to the one thing that's always been my fall back. Food.

I didn't even want to sit and write last night. But I've spent the majority of the day thinking about it, prepping myself to fall into the same trap tonight even though the bruises from last night haven't healed.

March 9, 2007

It Was One of Those Nights

Do you ever feel like someone else is at the master controls of your life, sitting behind the curtain flipping switches without warning and laughing hysterically to themselves at your actions? That's what life's like being an emotional eater. And let me tell you something. It pretty much sucks!

Last night was one of those nights for me. Day two on this week's emotional rollercoaster of life. And I plunged to the bottom. Then crashed. Literally.

The past two days have been full of extreme highs (finally moving my arse, getting a new computer & finding "forgotten money" on-line) and lows (being yelled at by my mother & hung up on by the ex). And in between there's been laughter, anger, tears, and apathy. Emotions I've grown used to over the years but somehow still can't seem to balance. They mess with my mind. Disrupt my sleep pattern. And worst of all, send me into an unconscious eating frenzy.

I didn't eat dinner with my son last night because he was out to dinner with his dad. Apparently this was enough of an excuse to my pitiful lack of self control to wait until after he went to bed to finally eat. I was good. A well balanced, portion controlled dinner. Shortly after, the sinking feeling I get when I've eaten too late, and when I'm tired. Emotionally tired. I rummaged through the pantry looking for anything to sate myself. Numb myself, maybe.

It wasn't until I was a third of the way through the bag that I realized what I was doing, but by then it was too late. The damage was done. I was tired. Physically, emotionally and mentally. I was sick. Sick to my stomach - not only for having eaten too much, but for losing what little control I seem to have over my choices.

And I crashed.

I'm disgusted.

March 7, 2007

I Did It! I Got Off My Tuckus!!

Well, actually I sat on my tuckus to do most of the exercising I did, but I did exercise today.

Started in with 20 minutes of various exercises including crunches, curls, arm and leg raises, shoulder curls, and heel raises. Then I hit the bike and did 2 miles. Whoa! Can I ever tell I haven't been moving much lately. That ride was hard, but I knew it probably would be.

I'm sure I'll be sore as hell tomorrow, but it was worth it. Now if I can just get something in tomorrow as well, sore or not.

March 6, 2007

I Thought About Exercise Today. Does That Count?

I am truly not off to a very good start on my exercise plan for the week. Ugh!

Monday was a total bust with trying to figure out wth is wrong with my dryer. Pulled it out, flipped it over, checked the lint traps and vents, but can't get it open to see what's making the noise. Does that count as exercise? Probably not since it's so light. Then there was the complete meltdown I almost had when my computer shut off again and this time wouldn't come back on for almost an hour. Oh good lord! Thankfully it's still hobbling along and an awesome friend offered to build me a new one. You rock!

Today. Well I really don't have any excuse for today other than I'm a complete slacker. I spent the morning working on stuff around the house and talking on the phone. Finally got in the shower with the intention of picking up the kid from school and having him take a walk with me since the weather was absolutely gorgeous today. See, I thought about it. Instead, I took my shower, had a sinking spell, and cat napped until it was time to pick him up. When I got to school he asked if he could play for a little while and 45 minutes later I told him we needed to go. After two store stops, and back home for homework time, it was time for dinner.

Obviously I'm not making it a priority. And obviously that needs to change.

So, that plan for tomorrow is this. Get up. Get the kid to school. Then come home and exercise before sitting my butt down or getting on the phone.

Wish me luck.

March 4, 2007

The End of Week 1

So here I am at the end of Week 1. It's ugly, my readers. Very, very ugly!! The number on the scale, that is. But first, let me review the goals I set for myself this week.

Drinking water. This one, surprisingly, turned out to be the easiest. Over the course of the week I consumed no less than 48 oz. of water every day, with yesterday topping the chart at 126 oz. Egads that's a lot of water!! I'm sure my little drunken episode on Friday night contributed to the completely dehydrated unquenchable thirst I felt yesterday. It hit me hard, folks. This gettin' healthy shit is dimmin' the lights of the 'party girl' me.

Eat breakfast. I made it through until yesterday with eating breakfast every morning by 9am. I got off track yesterday morning cuz I needed to be at the school to help move the classroom back now that the storm damage has been prepared. Then I had a donut. Bad, bad girl! The rest of the week I was good though. And what did it do? It made me hungry as a horse all freakin' day long!! OMG! I consumed more food last week than I used to eat in two weeks of not eating breakfast. And I was waking up hungry. I mean my stomach was literally screaming for food and would not be quiet until I gave it some. This is supposedly because I'm kicking my metabolism into gear, but c'mon. I can't keep eating so much food every day or I'll be back to the old me in the blink of an eye.

Exercise. Uh, yeah. Notsomuch. I'm not sure if it was the bloated feeling from drinking all that water, the post-eating draggies from all the damn food I was eating, or my metabolism trying to figure out how to work with the manufactured thyroxin I choke down my throat every morning, but exercise did not play a part in my week. Well, maybe a little yesterday with the classroom move, cleaning the house, and doing the laundry (up and down the stairs). Other than that, I took lots of naps and fought with my sleep schedule.

Writing. Didn't do much writing either, did I? For whatever reason my brain grabbed hold of the changes I was making and didn't rebel on me. I wasn't sitting there thinking about stuffing my face at night. And, since the week was fairly stable and my emotions were in check, I didn't have a lot of whining, or bitching, or moaning to do. It's a good thing I didn't try to write on Friday night though. You would have had a hard time trying to decipher what I was saying.

Now I head into Week 2. This week will be focused on exercising. I know it's the next step, and I want to take it. I'm just so bad at doing it unless I've got someone kicking me in the ass. So, this is your chance. Help get me moving. Give me a swift kick.

But in return you need to tell me what form of exercise works for you, and why you like it. I just haven't found anything that grabs me more than once or twice. So share your workout routines with me. Maybe I'll find something I like and will stick with.

February 27, 2007

I've Come a Long Way, Baby!

One of the "benefits" of my divorce was being granted permission by the United States Army to be issued a pseudo-military ID to access the hospital for my son. Along with this dubious honor I get to make an annual drive to Ft. Lewis to renew my ID, such as I did today. In the rain. And sleet. And snow showers. Oh what fun.

I got there at a good time (read as no waiting), walked in prepared to say "cheese" for the camera, when the girl behind the desk asks me, "Would you like to keep the same picture?" Now where the hell was she when I took my first military ID photo? The one that made me look hot, skinny, and kinda sexy. This last one. Let's just say it was, maybe, if you've got your beer goggles on, one step above my hideous driver's license photo. I asked if I had to keep it and she told me I could take a new one. A new one it was. And, although I didn't smile much, it's a million times better than the previously mentioned pictures.

So fast forward to dinner. WJ asks about my day, and what I did, so I tell him that I went to get my new ID. Which leads me to wondering where his ID went. I dug around looking for it and stuck it back in my wallet where it should be.

"That's not my ID," he says. "It's supposed to be white."

"No, that's my ID that's white. This is yours."

"Can I see your new one?"

"Sure," I say as I head over to my wallet to dig it out.

"Oooh! That looks great, Mom. And look. There's your other ID," he comments while looking at my hideous driver's license photo.

"Yuck!" I reply. "That ugly thing?"

"It's not ugly, Mom."

"It is to me. Do you know why?"

"No... why?" he asks.

"I was 32 lbs. heavier in that picture." And I held them up side by side, next to me. "Which Mommy do you like better?" I asked.

"I like YOU!" he replied.

Some day my son will be a politician.

I stopped and really looked at my driver's license picture. Really looked at it. It's not flattering in the least. And it repulsed me. My weight listed was 185, and that was probably a stretch - I was more like 190 at the time but wouldn't admit it. That me is gone. In so many ways. Put away in the past.

I've come a long way. And I'm still forging ahead!

February 26, 2007

Starting Off

My goals for this week are pretty basic but I've got to start somewhere, eh?

  • drink more water
  • eat breakfast
  • incorporate exercise into my routine at least 3 times this week
  • come here and write about whatever when I feel like it
Drinking water will be the hardest of the three for me to do. I am not, and never have been, a good water drinker. I just don't like plain water. Even though I know it's good for me, and that my body needs it, I have a hard time just sitting down and drinking water. So, as with any program I try to follow, I'll make adjustments along the way.

Eating breakfast sucks. I've not been a breakfast eater since I was a kid. It always makes me more hungry throughout the day, but supposedly it will boost my metabolism. We'll see.

Finding the time to exercise won't be a problem. It's actually doing it that will be hard. No excuses this time. I know I feel better when I exercise - I have more energy, I sleep better, and I'm less sassy. I just need to get off my ass and get moving.

Obviously the writing won't be a problem. And that's why I started this blog - to have an outlet to babble about whatever I want to. It's not to entertain others, it's for me. Of course if you're reading this, you're welcome to comment, or not. It's up to you.

Oh, and I won't be weighing myself every day either. It doesn't make sense to do so since I know initially I'll probably gain a few pounds from water weight. It'll be a sporadic thing and I'll let my clothes be my guide for now because for me a number on a scale doesn't mean shit. It's how I look and feel to myself that guides me in the positive direction.

Today's mood: a bit tired - it's early

February 25, 2007

Getting Ready to Make Some Major Changes

As I approach turning 40 I can't help but reflect on all the changes I've gone through in the past few years and think "What's next?" for the future. In an attempt to actually follow through with the next step of my life changing progression, I am starting this online journal of my actions, or inactions, to finally get with the program - for real this time.

In 2004 I was a very unhappy, and unhealthy, girl. With the separation and subsequent end of my marriage, I was topping the scale at the embarrassing weight of 190 lbs. On a 5' 7-1/2" frame you would think I would have been mortified - but I wasn't. I didn't see the "real" me when looking in the mirror. Just the me I thought I had always been. I was so far from reality it was ridiculous. When I finally realized I needed to make some changes, I refused to change because I didn't think I was worth it. However, the one good thing I can say about stress and major life unhappiness is it kicked my butt into gear whether I was ready or not. So I rode with it.

By the end of 2005, when I went back to work for the first time in 5 years, I had somehow (in spite of myself) dropped 13 lbs. This was a great start, but still not enough. I was at the same weight I got to after the birth of my son - the same weight I'd plateaued at and hadn't budged from for several years. It was depressing. Getting out of the house, working at a company with a fairly good sized campus that had lots of stairs (and actually using them even if it was just to go down to the smoker's lounge and back up again) helped. Then a co-worker friend and I started walking together every day at lunch. That's when I really started seeing some good progress. When I had to go out and buy new clothes because my pants were literally falling off my ass, I knew I was on my way!

I lost my job in August 2006 but continued my weight loss journey. Even though I wasn't walking every day, and hadn't replaced that with some other form of exercise, I was able to continue losing and finally, after years of failure and frustration, made it to my goal weight of 157 lbs. This was some random number I'd set in my brain thinking it was completely unattainable, but I'd finally gotten there nonetheless. And... I kept losing. Even through the holidays. At my lowest weight in over 20 years I was down to 148 lbs.

Then reality set in. The stress of being unemployed started to take its toll. Feeling the seclusion from adult interaction, lack of companionship, lack of financial security, and the inability to give or receive love hovered over me. And ultimately, the pounds started creeping back on. Slowly, albeit, but still coming back.

Today I weigh 153 lbs. Not bad considering. But now I know there is something negative happening and am aware that something needs to be done about it. Weight is just a number, and not one that I am ultimately obsessed with. What I am striving for is a more healthy lifestyle - in general. One that allows me to eat, and drink, and enjoy life to the fullest. One that makes me happy, and doesn't keep me on a leash. One that makes me feel accomplished because it IS one of the few things I can control.

This is the start of the continuation of my journey. My journey will be about:
  1. incorporating exercise into my life, and sticking with it
  2. continuing my weight loss
  3. quitting smoking
  4. and generally feeling better and healthier overall
And this blog will be my journal of truths, achievements, disappointments, and everything in between.

Today's weight: 153 lbs.
Today's mood: encouraged