Monday, February 14, 2011

Lifetime Update: Week ending 2/13/2011

Let me begin by saying...I have had a half a bottle of champagne...but it took the semi-drunk me to realize that my last 2 posts had the wrong year on the subject line. 

So this last week was pretty darn great for me (and for KT too!).  I got on the treadmill 3 times, going a little farther each time, except for on Sunday, because I just wasn't feeling it.  I have to confess that I was under my points during the week, several times.  I just wasn't hungry.  I tried to eat them, I really did, I just wasn't feeling it!  I even text KT asking for suggestions on ways to add some points to my dinners!  Didn't work too well.  Not because KT didn't have great tips, because she did.  I just couldn't get them into my mouth.  I even tried to guzzle booze to kill points but was unsuccessful!  Which is totally NOT like me at ALL!! 

I  made up for what I lacked during the week on the weekend though and totally scrapped my tracking and went to town with my eating.  I did just fine at school on Saturday but I went to try a new Chinese place with the Man that night and forgot that General Tso's Chicken is deep fried.  (I need to remember that it is Kung Pao that I like!)  I only ate half my portion, but it was still a big greasy 21pt+ mess of sugar and fat.  On Sunday, I needed guacamole and refried beans to soak up all of the Chinese grease lining my stomach so I made another bad decision.  It happens.  I am over it.

I saw a beautiful -1 lb loss on the scale putting me at tied with my lowest weight ever.  I am thinking that this just might be the number my body likes with my current diet and fitness level.  I am going to keep trying to get to the number I have in my head, but if I don't get there, I am fine with that too.  I don't want to have to struggle and sacrifice to just to make a number on the scale.  My current fitness level and eating habits are fine for me to maintain the number I am currently at so that is all good.  

KT had an amazing week!  She had a "baller loss" and earned herself her 2nd 5lb star!!  Her -3lb this week made up for her disappointing and inappropriate gain from last week.  She is doing so well, and I am so proud of her!  She has an amazing attitude and just won't quit!  I really think the Weight Watchers lifestyle was meant for her.  She loves to weigh and measure her food, and she pre-plans like a pro! 

I have to say though, what I am most proud of is that she is actually learning to cook while on WW!  Before this she was totally a 'quick and easy' kind of girl.  She had some fall-back recipes that she would make but wasn't too into experimenting in the kitchen.  Now, she is actually looking forward to trying new things and recipes!  I got her to taste some red and yellow peppers a few weeks ago, just so see if she liked them (which, believe me, is a step, and she didn't like them) and there is a recipe in the WW Weekly for a Mexican brown rice casserole, that contains spinach, she is really looking forward to trying!  There was some other cooking accomplishment she had this past week, but I can't think of it right now (damn champagne). 

So, today is Valentine's Day.  I am NOT a fan of the holiday.  Never really have been.  It is just a made up, Hallmark holiday, designed to make single people feel bad about themselves, and married people obligated to spend money.  This year I told the Man to not even bother.  I tell him I love him each and every day.  He does the same for me, and I don't need him to send me flowers once a year because it is required by the standards of the holiday.  For the last 3 years the Man has gotten me the same card, which I love, and we do something semi-nice for dinner.  We don't go out and we don't buy gifts.  This year, he got me a different card (because they don't carry the regular one any more) and an adapter for my iPod that I needed.  I got him a bad of candy hearts.  We had salads for dinner as we do every Monday, with the exception of the champagne.  The only reason we had champagne was already chilled, and we were out of regular wine. 

But...for the sake of Valentine's day...and because I know he never reads this blog...may I just say, I have a pretty damn amazing husband!  He really puts up with a lot of my crap and seems to enjoy it.  I just don't understand it sometimes.  I am a major pain in the ass, and yet he loves me.  He loved me when I was fat, and he loves me now.  He knows all of my flaws and either embraces them or works with me to change them.  We have the same weird sense of humor, and on many occasions, we think the same things at the same time.  I would marry him again tomorrow.  He may be a pain in my ass, but he is MY pain in the ass, and I wouldn't trade that for anything!  Happy Valentine's Day, Love Bug!

 And just so KT doesn't feel left are some pictures of HER Valentine!!  Her beautiful and smart 6 month old awesome daughter AJ!!  Let me tell you, I am not a baby person...but this baby...ugh...she has me wrapped around her chubby little finger.  Greatest baby ever made!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Former Fatty's are like Recovering Alcoholics just as Ogres are like Onions...

Not too long ago, on a preveious post,  I mentioned in passing, a statement I use a lot in reference to my weight loss journey being similar to that of an alcoholic.  Then I commented on H0neyB's WW blog with a similar comment. I thought I should take some time to clarify my analogy and develop it further.

Let me begin my saying that I am not an alcoholic, and have never been to any form of rehab, that I am aware of. I have however watched plenty of shows on TV about addicts so that makes me pretty much an expert. I have heard talk of there being such a thing as Overeaters Anonymous, but as I have never watched any shows on that organization, I cannot speak to their program or recovery plan. However, I did go to their website and according to their quiz...I am an Overeater....yea, that isn't a newsflash.  According to their wiki page they follow the basic AA program so maybe I am not off base with my assumptions. Also, if you are offended in any way to my use of the word 'fatty' in reference to myself and sometimes to others, please don't read further. I say it a lot in the below paragraphs. I like the word. And I like to be blunt. If you want the sugar coated version of this post, cut and paste it into Word and do "Find and Replace" search and substitute fatty for another word that you like better. (Oh, you might also want to do the same for the words, Chunkster, Lard-ass, Tank-butt, and Chub-monster.)  And, lastly, before I begin, those of you who understand the movie reference made in the title of this post are awesome.  If you don't get the reference, than you won't get me!

Here is how I came to the conclusion that being a recovering fatty is EXACTLY like being a recovering alcoholic:

#1 - Admitting you have a problem:

It is always stated that for an alcoholic (or any addict) admitting you have a problem is the first step to recovery. For many of us, admitting that you are a fatty can be tough. For me, I had no clue. None at all. I knew I was chunky and that I had put on weight, but was I fat? Nope, I was fine. It wasn't until the size 16's wouldn't button (or zip) any more and I had to start shopping at the plus sized stores that I realized I might have a problem And it wasn't until my Doctor said the word, DIABETES, that it clicked that I might just be a big ole chunker who needed to drop some serious LB's. How many times have we said, "No, I am not fat, I am just big boned". Or pulled some pants out of the wash that suddenly wouldn't zip and blamed the washer for shrinking them, instead of admitting that maybe, just maybe, it was the ass that was bigger?How many of us cried the first time we stepped on the scale at a Weight Watcher's meeting? Why did we cry? Because we hadn't realized it was "that bad" or we were ashamed of the number we saw. So here goes, admit it. Say it. I dare you!

"Hi, my name is Rizzle. And I am a former fatty that is still addicted to food. Also, are you going to eat that? It looks good! Is that cheese I smell?"

#2 - Quitting ain't easy:

How many people do you know, or have heard of, with a drinking problem that say, "Eh, it is not that bad, I can quit when ever I want to. I have this under control". Yea, right. If that were true, there wouldn't be so many high priced fancy pants rehab clinics across the country. Same with weight loss. If it were easy, there wouldn't be a need for all these silly diet fads and programs like Weight Watchers. If we could just make a decision to stop shoving cheese covered deep fried yummyness into our mouths and never again get the craving for it, there wouldn't be such an epidemic of obesity! I am sure many of you have done the, "I will never eat fast food again, and only eat salads from now on", only to be side swiped by a box of donuts in the office that are actually speaking your name clear as a bell asking to be eaten. Or have you done the classic, "Oooo, I only have to drink a shake for breakfast and a shake for lunch, and I will get skinny in a week? Sign me up!" then after one week and a few pounds lost go right back to our favorite drive thu and wonder why the weight came back.? Not gonna lie...did both of those...repeatedly. If you are reading this, it is probably because you are struggling either with losing the weight or keeping it off, so you know what I am talking about here. (If you aren't in either of those two categories,..Hello, and did you find me?) All of us have a moment when we stop and say, "Okay, enough is enough, I am done with this. Time to get my tank-butt in gear and quit this for good!" If step one and two, were easy...wait until you get to step three...and four!

#3 - Recover is a long and bumpy road:

This is very similar to #2 but in a different way. In #2 you are making the decision to stop the unhealthy habit of drinking excessively or in this case eating excessively. And in #3 you are actually working, struggling, and sweating down the road to recovery. This is where the alcoholics learn that having a half rack and 2 margaritas for breakfast, and 12 shots of vodka for dinner is not a good idea and won't make the pain of day to day life any better. This is where us fatty's learn that there is no love to be found at the bottom of an empty bag of Doritos and that a serving of cheese is the size of one's thumb, NOT an entire brick. (Yea, shocking. I know.) I am not going to lie. It sucks. It is hard. In all the recovery shows I see on TV there is always a clip of the subject of the episode crying and begging to be sent home, or even screaming and yelling about how absurd the whole process is. And you know what, I have never seen the ending of one of those shows were the person says "Yea, that was easy. Piece of cake." or said "Ugh, that was a mistake. Getting sober was a waste of my time. I was better off a drunk." Granted, there may be cases of these individuals, but I have never seen any of them.

#4 - Once you are "sober" you aren't "cured":

Once you have beaten your drinking problem and haven't picked up a drink in x amount of days and are discharged from whatever rehab program you were in, you are still, I repeat, STILL an alcoholic. An alcoholic is taught that they can't pick up a drink again and not expect a down ward spiral. It may be possible for some alcoholics to maybe have one or two drinks here and there, randomly without any ill effects, but the alcoholics I know, wouldn't even want to take that risk. (If you know one who can, awesome for them!) It would be torturous to leave an alcoholic alone, unattended with their drink of choice in bulk on the table in front of them. Alcoholics are taught to avoid situations where temptation might be overwhelming, like bars and liqueur stores. Same goes with being a fatty. As a former fatty, I know if I don't use the skills I learned every day during my 'recovery' I will be headed down a road I don't want to be on. And this, my friends, is one of the only exceptions I see to my theory. Unlike an alcoholic, us former fatty's can indulge here and there without a major catastrophe. In fact, in some instances it is actually encouraged. For example, if I was forced to promise that I would never, ever, in my life eat a Dorito. All I would want to do would be eat Doritos. I can allow myself small indulgences of Doritos without undoing all the hard work I have done. I can eat one small, single serving bag and be satisfied. I cannot, however, be left alone in a room with a large bowl of Doritos and be expected not to eat the entire bowl, and then lick any remaining cheese and crumbs off the bottom of said bowl while growling at anyone who tries to pry it out of my hands. I know, that I will over indulge if I set one pinky toe into any location with a large amounts of open food like a buffet or even worse a party in which chips are left out for grazing. Because I know this, I don't go to any restaurant with the word "Buffet" in the title. Sometimes, it is unavoidable to go to places in which my trigger foods are present. I have to then, put a plan in place to prevent me from releasing the beast. I make my husband restrain me as best he can. I eat before I go so I am not hungry. I stand at the other end of the room. I stare at them, and tell them to shut up and quit talking to me, because begging isn't cute and I will not succumb to their mind games. (I say that to myself, if you say it out loud, you get weird looks from people.)

#5 - You will ALWAYS be in recovery:

I would assume, that there won't come a time when an alcoholic doesn't wake up and think "ya, know, today might just be easier to handle if I was wasted." They will always have the stigma that they used to have a drinking problem. There will never, ever, be a day where I wake up in the morning and I am no longer addicted to food. I will never, ever, NOT be a former fatty. I have had to come to terms with this. It is what it is. I will struggle every day of my life to make the right choices. It will get easier every day, but it won't go away. I know that if I lose my focus and I don't pay attention to what goes into my mouth, I will get fat again. I know this, and I accept it. I know that when I get angry at my husband for not remembering to put my radio station back on in my car after he borrows it, I will want to eat all the Taco Bell I can get my hands on. I also know, that eating all that Taco Bell won't make me any less angry with my husband, or help him remember to not touch my damn radio when he borrows my car. It would be awesome to have a craptastic day and want to eat my weight in grapes to feel better, but that is unlikely. I would love for all of my stretch mark scars and extra skin to not be there when I wake up tomorrow morning, but that is even less likely than craving grapes. I wear my scars semi-proudly and admit openly that I used to be a tank-ass. I am not one anymore, but I used to be one and I NO intention of being on again.

#6 - Recovering alcoholics that go to meetings are more successful with their recovery:

As much as I would like to spout off some awesome statistics on this one, I am not going to because I don't have any and I don't feel like looking them up. (Besides, 87.4% of statistics are made up.) Here's the thing on this one. Meetings = Accountability. Accountability = Success. Plain and simple. And don't think stumbling into a meeting plastered with a half empty bottle of Night Train singing the National Anthem to the dead rat you found on the side of the road who has the same eyes as your great-grandmother counts as going to a meeting, because it doesn't. I checked. They have rules about that. Just like Weight Watchers has a rule about eating a dozen donuts during a meeting. You just aren't allowed to do that. (Well, maybe you could, if you had the points for them, but I am pretty sure the other members would tackle you to the ground and beat you senseless just to lick the last bit of glaze off of the corner of your mouth.)

#7 - Recovering alcoholics that have the support of friends and family are more successful with their recovery:

Same goes for this as the above. No alcoholic is going to remain sober if every time they go to their mother's house she shoves a shot of whisky at them and says "here, drink this, you look thirsty" or the classic "Why aren't you drinking that rum spiked punch that your grandmother made? Don't you know that she worked on making that all afternoon just for you? This could be her last Chinese New Year you know. Do you want her going to God because of heart break?" And in the same way, if your friends and family are constantly pushing you to eat this, or have another helping, you won't be successful. Learn how to say no. Learn how to karate chop people in the neck who don't understand that No means No! (This is a good skill to have for every instance of No means No.) Also, on the same wave length, husband/wives/partners of alcoholics typically don't keep open containers of booze lying around the house to tempt their newly sober companions. They are welcome to have them, just not where they can be tempting. My husband is allowed all the junk he wants. On one shelf in the pantry. That I don't look at. I frequently say to him "Will you please take that half eaten bag of caramel corn to work with you tomorrow. It is torturing me, sitting there, staring at me with it's beady little eyes." And if he doesn't, I throw it out. In the garbage can outside. (Because it smells worse and I am less likely to go rescue it from that one later on in the evening.)  If you want your friend/family to stop their behaviour and be supportive, you have to tell them  Don't expect them to guess, and don't expect them to get it right the first time either.  They are learning this 'new you' as much as you are!  And like an alcoholic, have a 'sponser' in your life who has been through what you have so you can lean on them for support when times get tough.  My 'sponser' was the WW message boards and Twitter.  I know that no matter what I shove down my throat and no matter how many pounds I gain after a week of indulging, I can march on into my Twitter feed and announce proudly, "I had a shit-tastic week and ate like a mad-woman.  But I am here, I am back and I am on program!" and I will get loads of applause and well wishes from the friends I have never met who know what it is like to succomb to a batch of fresh baked cookies, eaten in bed while watching Bridget Jones Diary and crying for no reason.  Hell, some of them know what it is like to be so desperate to get into bed and cry that they don't even bother to bake the cookies!

#8 - Alcoholics fall off the wagon sometimes too.

Even though it may feel like it sometimes, no on expects an alcoholic or a fatty to be perfect every single day of their recovery.  Well, I am sure that isn't true.  I am sure there are real assholes out there with un-realistic expectations of people, but frankly, those people are assholes and should be punched in the face.  Every one makes mistakes.  Every one.  It happens.  The most important part however, is how one recovers from that mistake.  Slipping up and having a beer is one thing, but having an entire case of beer every hour on the hour because of the slip up is another thing entirely.  When an alcoholic slips up they walk right into their meeting and says, "I slipped up.  I had a beer.  But I am starting over fresh.  I am one day sober."  Everyone applauds and says "Good for you!  Way to get back on your feet!  We are proud of you!"  I wold be lying if I told you that since I started on Weight Watchers I have not once gone over my points or had a gain.  I would also be lying if I said I had a unicorn and a gnome whose only purpose in life was to give me foot massages.  In fact, I fell off the wagon for several months halfway thru my journey.  Yep, I thought I was "cured" so I went back to the way things were before and was shocked as hell when I couldn't fit into my pants again.  (Damn washer shrank them again!  Stupid, piece of garbage, always does that!)

#9 - Alcoholics have something to show off and hold on to to symbolize their recovery
I have known several recovering alcoholics in person, and every one of them pulled out a coin from their pocket to show me how many days sober they were.  They were always so proud of it too!  "Look, I got my 90 Sober coin!  Isn't it pretty?"  In Weight Watchers they give you all kinds of fun charms and stickers to use as 'Anchors' for success.  I carry my keychain that I earned at 10% that has all of my charms on it in my purse as a constant reminder of my success and my commitment to success.  I heard a new member comment once.  "Ummm, why are they so excited over a stupid sticker?  Really?  It is just a stupid sticker."  Well, it is MORE than just a stupid sticker.  It is a symbol.  A star shaped marker to show off all the hard work and dedication it takes to lose weight.  I am proud of all of my stickers and will gladly show them off to anyone who wants to see them.  And sometimes even to people who don't!  I will pull out my 10% keyring sometimes and make random strangers on the street marvel at its beauty.  Sometimes, I sleep with it at night...wait...maybe that was going to far...I actually wouldn't sleep with it.  It may fall under the bed and nothing there is a black hole under there...and monsters...and a creepy weird dude who sometimes breathes heavily with an ax clutched in his hands...but, I digress.  Wanna see my awesome keyring?  Sure you do!!
Isn't it pretty?  You bet it is!
Okay so I know that AA and OA have 12 steps so it would have been super awesome of me to have 12 witty similarities to post.  But I am not witty.  Or funny.  Or smart.
OR FAT ANYMORE!!!  I am a former fatty, still in recovery!
Also, I read the title of this post to my wonderful husband and he didn't get it.  He says he doesn't like cartoons that are love stories.  I said, I don't like him and am looking for a new husband.  Please submit your applications in the comment section below.  Don't worry, my husband doesn't read this blog.  I am not sure he knows how.  I married him for his money looks, not for his smarts.
**Disclaimer:  The information above should not be used to treat, cure, or diagnose any medical condition real or imagined.  This is for information only and should not be construed as actual valid information blessed by the Pope and written in stone.  Actual results may vary.  The above expressed opinion is that of the Author and the Author alone.  There is no guarantee, written or expressed that the above information will be the catch-all cure for the above mentioned issues.  Any similarities to persons living or dead, is purely coincidental and not a valid reason for a lawsuit.  Any and all complaints about the contents of this post or its disclaimer may result in injury or death and will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
P.S.  Thank heavens for spell check...jeez, I think I should win an award for all of the crazy and original ways I spelled alcoholic while writing this post!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Lifetime Update; Week ending 02/06/2011

For what I was expecting to be an uneventful week, it turned into a pretty eventful one after all.  Let me begin by mentioning that I gained this week.  Just a little tiny .8 that I am not even upset about.  I knew it was going to happen, and I am over it.  Big deal.  Moving on.

I had some major success this week on the treadmill that I am super proud of.  I not only got my ass on it twice, but each time I ran a little farther and a little faster!  I got myself a little motivation with the Shamrock Run coming up in March so that is helping a lot!  I even signed KT up for the fitness walk portion of the 5k so she can chase my ass down the streets of Portland with her stroller.  I haven't yet decided if I will allow her to poke me with a sharp stick, or beat me with a horse whip to get me to run faster, we will have to see how well my attempt at training goes before making that decision! 

I gained this week mostly because I ate every single point I could get my grubby little hands on.  I am sure that I underestimated on many of the things that I ate as I didn't measure or weigh most of what I ate as my scale broke forever ago and I am yet to replace it.  I had a few big meals that pushed me over the edge, mostly being the amazing Blue Velvet Burger at my favorite local burger joint.  I have no clue how many points it is, as it contains an ungodly amount of both blue cheese crumbles and blue cheese dressing.  I guesstimated as best I could, but believe you me, I enjoyed every last bite of that wonderful burger.  In fact, I should have stopped eating it about half way thru but burgers make terrible leftovers.  And those wonderful thin little crunchy awesome fries that come with it....yea, they are bottomless...but I only had the portion pictured.  I wanted more...but I controlled much as I possibly could under the circumstances.  I blame my entire overindulgent blue cheese dripping experience on KT.  She made the terrible mistake of planning her day in such a way that she could get some fast food andand still have points left to spare! And then, she had the audacity to text me about how excited she was about being on a plan that allowed her to have a cheeseburger with fries for dinner!  So because she put it into my head, I had to have a cheeseburger and fries for dinner as well.  Unfortunately, I wasn't as dilligent at planning as her and went over my points for the day.  Not to worry, I punished her for her mistake...well...that isn't true...I haven't punished her yet...I am waiting until she least expects it, then I will spring it on her.  She is quite tough so I have to get at her when her defences are down or I will end up hurting myself. 
I also had our big annual Chili Cook-off at work on Friday, which I never win, but always enter.  I took some great photos of my chili making process for a future post.  I love making low point Weight Watchers chili.  It is so quick and easy and just plain satisfying!  I make mine with lots of beans and peppers and of course ground turkey!  I did win in the Best Name category for my chili, but since I didn't pick the name, I don't really count it and I gave the prize to the person who named it for me.  (She called it Double Bonus Bean Chili since it had two types of beans, black and kidney, and we got two bonuses this year.)

KT and I have started a lovely tradition of going to Subway for lunch on Fridays (this week we went on Thursday due to the chili thing) which I love.  We walk there since it is only a few blocks from the office.  It gives us a great chance to break away and get some activity in, while splitting a healthy lunch.  Since foot longs are back to $5 each we get one and split it!  I really love eating our sammies and laughing together for an hour at then end of the week.  It is a really great way to wrap up the week and get the weekend started on the right foot!

Speaking of the weekend, as many of you know by now, Sunday was the Super Bowl.  Personally, I could give less than two shits about football.  (Have you ever thought about how stupid that saying is?  Less than two shits?  Wouldn't that be one shit?  Just stupid.)  KT's mother and step-dad came to town and she invited me and the Man over to watch the game.  She made a whole spread of Weight Watcher food and had a spreadsheet pulled up on her computer with the points and serving size for each item.  We had the Salsa Chicken that I posted a recipe for a while back, with all the fixin's, including these super cute 100 cal (1 pt+) packets of guacamole which were super delish, beans, taquitos, queso dip, and I brought a tray of crudites, fruit salad and 1 Pt+ mini cupcakes.  We all ate until we were stuffed and then plopped in front of the TV to enjoy some football.  (And by 'We all', I mean they did.  I brought homework and watched the commercials and the terrible half time show.) 

KT earned her very first, and very big NSV (non-scale victory) on Sunday and she was super proud of herself for not over indulging on junk like she usually does on Super Bowl Sunday.  I say she was proud...because...well...she had her first gain this week.  It was a big traumatic event for her and I think she is pretty calm about it now, but she cried all through our meeting today, and I am sure most of the afternoon as well.  It took her a while to come to terms with it as she felt the need to find some thing to blame the gain on.  Which I think is normal and natural.  We walked through it together and I gave her some tough love, and some actual love to get it all smoothed out.

The thing about this gain, though small, was that it was totally unexpected.  She did everything right during the week.  She ate all her daily points, a good portion of her weeklies, and she got in some activity every day.  She tracked.  She portioned.  She planned.  She did it all!  And she was still up a small fraction of a pound.  The hardest question I think any Weight Watcher leader, or supporter has to answer is "I did everything right, why didn't the plan work?"  I pulled out every little thing I could think of to help her feel better, but none of it worked.  We looked over her tracker.  We talked about maybe she was eating the wrong things, or even not eating enough during the day to save points for dinner.  I sought out some solluce for her on Twitter and our Leader and a Receptionist pulled her aside to offer some help.  In the end, it came down to the fact that sometimes, these things happen and there is nothing we can do about it but keep trying.  Overall, I think it worked.  She told me earlier that she feels much better about it.  I think she is lying a little, but that is fine.  I know she won't quit the plan, and I know she will continue to work just as hard as before.  This little gain won't derail her!  (Big thanks go out to all of you that reached out to KT on Twitter and offered her some feedback.  I know it meant a lot to her, and to me!)

In closing, if any of you have any words of wisdom that helped you thru a gain, either expected or unexpected, leave them as a comment!  I would love to hear them! (And so would KT!)