Losing weight in spite of myself.

I began this blog in February 2011 as a way to help me not quit trying to lose weight, and to learn a few things. It's been an interesting and powerful experience. It certainly confirms what I've long suspected--that although I am a genuinely happy cheery person in the main, I am NOT a happy cheery dieter. I DETEST losing weight. I resent being overweight in the first place and I am a virtuoso in the art of self-sabotage. And YET--I'm doing it! I'm fighting and kicking and EATING all the way down, but the weight is finally going down. The plan I was following in February was a half-baked one largely based on wishful thinking. I gained a little weight and decided to get real. I knew I couldn't just join weightwatchers or count calories or do any one plan and expect to be successful. I decided if I was going to bother to make the effort to lose weight I was going to throw everything I could think of at the problem. And so I do. My real "Day One" for this blog is April 1, 2011. I joined weight watchers, I joined caloriecount.com (awesome website), I read the blog losingweighteveryday.blogspot.com religiously, I keep this blog faithfully, I joined the health programs sponsored by my insurance, I use the principles from overeater's anonymous, I use my church's 12 step program as well, I subscribe--and use--Healthy Cooking Magazine.

The result of all this? Painfully slow progress (About 20 lbs in 10 months). But it IS progress and like the little engine that could I keep on trying in my rebellious way. I have no intention of quitting. This is by far the longest sustained weight loss effort I've ever made in my life. Successful I think, because for the first in my life I've done this MY way--which I've discovered, involves a lot of pizza and restaraunt food. I'm convinced this is the only way to lose weight. For me it must be MY way. For you it MUST be YOUR way. Not weight watcher's way, not your doctor's way, but YOUR way. Any plan or idea I use is only a tool.

The latest plan to lose weight my way began on Oct 29, 2013. It really is my own crazy plan. As you'll see if you read that post. I've implemented the best ideas of all sorts of eating plans and thrown out the scale. A couple of months in and I'm definitely healthier. I'm actually enjoying myself. I won't weigh until April 1, 2014, so I'll see then if this works the way I hope it will.

There is no magic weight loss bullet. But there IS a great deal of magic in the discovery of what I can happily live with (very different from what weight watchers tells me I can happily live with) and still have the body and health I want.

Good luck to all of us on this journey. It's quite a trip!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Artichoke dip

Oh my gosh! Catherine hit the calorie jackpot last night with the best spinach-artichoke dip I've ever tasted. I haven't calculated the calories, but it's sure to be a disaster. I'm having trouble reminding myself (strongly) that such delicious things are not going away out of my life. Seriously! How can I doubt that?? I KNOW I will not be perfect whatever plan I try---but weirdly, typing that I can see that I don't believe it. After 50 years of evidence to the contrary, I think I'll just sail through. That's because right now I'm really full. REALLY full, with a delicious dinner tonight and more deliciousness tomorrow--so boredom and deprivation seem like minor irritants. Oh well. I will continue to enjoy the artichoke dips in life. AND I really am looking forward to being hungry and truly enjoying my food again. Crazy that I can't make myself do that on my own, but apparently I can't. so here's to a fresh start on the infamous MONDAY. It'll be fun----at least for 10 minutes.

Some things to be grateful for.

The number one ladies detective agency books!
The carved trees I got for Christmas that are gracing my office.
That Dave and C had fun in SLC
That the weather looks like it will be fine on Sunday to take her back.
My own kettlebells
A day off on Thursday
For internet news
For my warm coat
For our warm fire at home
For my two fat cats

Monday, December 29, 2014

Starting Sunday

Okay, okay, okay. I will begin trying again on Sunday. Meanwhile, I've at least gotten a little exercise, although my leg is still bothering me. I went through my slips yesterday and randomized the hungry girl days.

Self-deception is an amazing thing. My gray pants, that I don't wear very much, are fitting fine today which makes me think that I don't need to work on my weight at all--even though virtually everything else is very tight and I feel like an overstuffed balloon.

I'm debating about adding the weight watchers zero point food list. The three things that are surprising are bananas, apples and ketchup. I'm not quite sure what to do. I don't think I'd eat mountains of bananas and apples, but I would probably eat them almost daily and they DO have calories (80), and goodness knows, those stupid calories add up. Enough so, that I think WW has taken back bananas as a freebie.  On the other hand, I need my program to be liveable. The less liveable, the less likely I am to stick with it. But I'm a little nervous about the first time I tried my randomized system and I set the calories too high and didn't lose anything. I don't want to do that again. I'm also not too thrilled with the idea of the scale. I'm thinking of not even weighing in at the beginning---mostly because I just don't want to know. These last few months have been a serious bender. But also because the scale just doesn't tell me enough. Am I losing weight because I'm losing muscle mass? Am I gaining because I'm gaining muscle mass?  Maybe I'll compromise--the first apple and banana are free? I'm not a huge ketchup eater unless I have fries--oven fries are a staple for me. But maybe the ketchup is ok since it's not a daily thing.

I AM excited to just not feel so overstuffed. This feeling will last until I have to deny myself the first item. Truly, overeating has NOTHING to do with hunger and everything to do with the fact that eating is my favorite thing on earth to do. We went and saw zoo-lights on Saturday night. I was stuffed. But we could eat at the Beastro! And they have pretty good food! And it was zoo-lights! So of course I had pizza and garlic knots, and hot chocolate.

I think it's important this time around that hunger does NOT play a role. That's why I like the WW zero point soup and zero point list (mostly veggies of course). I can't do much about not wanting every food item that I see---well, yes I can. I can work on finding better habits. But my mind is solidly addicted. Gratitude is always helpful though. Here is some.

Funny presents!!
Snow on Christmas Day--perfect, beautiful Christmas snow!!
PERFECT dry weather conditions all through Nov and Dec when we had to drive a lot
Christmas decorations
Christmas music
That the older nursery kids have finally moved on
That Sis. Leishman is in there with us now
Our fireplace
That I had almost all of last week off
The temple
Faith renewed re: Christine
calorie count guides--dieting is horrible, but much less so now than in the 70's
Good health
That Dave snowblowed for me this morning.
exercise dvds
easy access medical care
Settlers of Catan

Monday, December 22, 2014

Bleak January and February

I was thinking about how I'm going to make my January effort work. And I was thinking I need to do something (but what!??) to counteract January and February. I live in Utah and those two months are bleak.

All the Christmas lights go out. All the Christmas music goes out. All the Christmas bills come in. There are  no more parties and potlucks and yummy treats at work. I begin to eat right--which means "eat a whole lot less than I want." No fun Christmas spending. The weather is cold and dark, the driving is scary.  I have to start coming in to work at 8 rather than 8:30 which I don't like. Church goes to the one o'clock schedule--blech. No wonder I don't like dieting! It's not just the food that goes away, but all kinds of things I enjoy go away, and emotionally I blame the diet for everything.

One thing for sure, I'll be traveling somewhere virtual in Jan. That's fun. And although I hate to see the Christmas decorations come down, I do like the spacious feeling of the house. There is lots to look forward to in 2015--it's just those 8 weeks that are tough. March is also bleak and dreary looking, but at least there's usually less snow, so the driving is better and there's the promise of spring.

Cheer up stuff---

Virtual travel
No frantic Christmas running around.
A new class to take
Make serious inroads on learning to draw better, finish book, finish math article--these might not be "fun" but I'll sure feel good getting them done.
Exercise will feel good
Success in my eating right efforts will feel good.
I think I'll plan a little "winter get-away" I even have a free hotel stay I can use.

It'll be ok. At least I know it's not only the diet that's making me feel bereft.  I'd better keep up the gratitude project during those months. Here's a little for today

New author discovery! Stephanie Barron--there are 11 books I haven't read yet!
Fun family Christmas party last night
That Lisa drove everyone--probably saved Dad's life.
1/2 hour to Christmas vacation!
The little nap I took at work.
That Camille is cleaning up the kitchen.
That Catherine intercepted Dave's package
That I was able to walk to work today
That I only have 1 more week of some of the kids in nursery!!
That I'm not alone in nursery!
My funny co-workers

Friday, December 19, 2014

Still looking for the middle

Sean wrote a wonderful post today about never giving up even if you're way off track with no motivation to get back on. He assures us that we'll get back on track. Thank goodness for that, but I still distrust the "Click." What clicks on, can just as easily click off. How and what do I do when the click goes off?  I suppose I can just try and maintain, but when my click goes off, it is well and truly off and I'm not interested in maintaining or making any effort at all. Maybe I'm just so convinced that I can't succeed that I make sure I pack the weight back on as quickly as I can to prove to myself that I'm right? But why should that worry me--I already live in the land of success for many people.

Although I weigh 200 plus pounds just now, that is DREAM WEIGHT for Sean, and plenty of others, especially the poor souls who are super obese. I walk, I took a PE class. I can sit in movie theater seats, go to any sporting event and go to the top of the bleachers, I ride in airplanes and buy clothes off the rack. Dream lifestyle!! In a lot of important ways, I DO live the life of the thin. That's what I want to focus on. Losing weight isn't scary or different, it's will only enable me to do the things I already  do a little more easily.  I actually DO maintain a weight that would be nirvana for some. I'm not that big comparitively. That sounds like great psychology for purposes of self-sabotage, but not so great for motivation. If it's only a "small" change, what will motivate me to make the effort to make it happen? Maybe I can think of it as a small change with BIG consequences. No diabetes (I hope), better self-esteem. But I'll still be the same person.


I like that. It's good to be the same person, because I am a GOOD and wonderful person and I really resent the media implying that I am inferior because I have this problem. We ALL have problems. So, no resentment---because if I drop the weight it doesn't make any kind of fundamental difference anyway. I can be free to drop.

I don't know why that's important but I can sense that it is for me.

Maybe I should just go with the idea that I can use the diet industry as a guide and I should do the exact opposite of whatever they think is motivating.

A little gratitude

So glad Dad didn't seriously damage that car the other night
Christine is coming to events more on time
Catherine's home for the holidays
Money--it's been a long time coming, but we really have enough--it feels so good!
My fun office

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


My New Year's resolutions are starting to make an appearance. One of them is to see a nutritionist. I will do this in January. As you know, I'm way off the diet wagon and as a result my clothes are tight BUT I'm off my bladder medication and my fingernails are strong and healthy. What on earth is going on???

I really feel like what I eat when I'm watching it, is not all that different from what I eat when I'm not. When I'm not dieting, I eat a lot more cheese and much larger portions and a LOT more desserts. But surely the desserts aren't helping anything physically? And the larger portions? I would say that maybe I'm low in calcium or dairy when I diet, except that I'm not. I'm a milk drinker and have cheese almost every day whether on a diet or not. When I'm trying to watch what I eat, I do eat a lot more vegetables, but surely that's a good thing?

Other resolutions--really and truly to get out the non-fic book proposal. Also to understand our retirement accounts, AARP discounts and the skymiles program.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The devil works on you

I'm thinking of the phrase "snatching failure out of the jaws of success." I'm sure in the weight-loss world I've done that over and over and over. I think Satan is real and there is nothing he delights in more than getting us to quit just as we're about to succeed.

What happened last time? I was tired, I was bored. But I think I was worn out from previous non-working attempts too. What if I had had my approach when I started with weight watchers? Could have held on until the end? I think maybe I could have. I must be content to go slow which I never am. But better slow than not at all.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Back at work

I've been sick these past few days--naturally, my appetite has been fine. I dragged myself into work today, but I'll be glad when the day is over. Holly, my favorite blogger, posted how discouraged she is because she's gained weight back and isn't motivated at all to do anything about it. THAT sounds familiar. I posted this as a comment.

Thank you so much for this post!! I feel exactly the same way. I'm trying to rake up the will to try again--probably around New Year, which has never worked before, but I'm trying to believe that it will now.

Except, that after reading your post I DO believe it!!! Because when I read your post all I see is success, which makes me realize that I HAVE been and AM successful too!!!  Will I finally reach goal weight? I don't know. But I will have success, and I will weigh far less than I might otherwise. So, to hell with the scale and the tape measure. Success in weight control is exactly the same for me as success in any other endeavor---charity, kindness, gratitude, thank goodness there isn't a way to quantify those, or I might have given up years ago I'm so far from perfect.

I'm becoming increasingly convinced that I have NO IDEA what the journey of weight loss even looks like. Maybe weight gains, stalls and total loss of motivation are just a natural part of the journey. It's as silly to give up on ourselves in those places as it would be to give up on a hike because there is a hill ahead or a rock in our shoe.

     I do feel better now that I've written that. Every day of success is just that. A success. I've hit a bump. That's ok. Even inevitable. I'll keep on going. God is the one in charge here. If I fight my whole life and stay the same size, I'll have succeeded because I never gave up and I'll be blessed. So, I'm going to try as hard as I can and in the meantime just enjoy my wonderful body that takes me everywhere and does everything.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Breakfast plenty

Thank goodness for people around me. We had our staff Christmas breakfast today. Of all buffets, I love breakfast ones the most. But I was sitting with the skinny people in my office, so I was forced to be much more reasonable than I would have been naturally. And it was ENOUGH. More than enough. It's three o'clock and I'm just now beginning to get hungry. The pretty blond I work with just said the same thing, so I really think that down deep, I'm a normal person, I just can't seem to say NO when food is in front of me. Maybe I should hire a body guard or Jillian Michaels to exert peer pressure. I would hate that so much.

Anyway---I love the holidays. The beauty more than the food. I was thinking, if I had to choose, there are actually a few things that I would choose over food. Books. Also really great theming or decorations. A visual experience is more important to me than food. Of course, I live in America and can usually pair food with both of those things to make me insanely happy, but it's nice to know that I'm not completely obsessed (only mostly).

Some things I'm grateful for today:

That I don't suffer from depression.
That I have the gospel
My job
Dave doing such a great job with Dad last night.
That the Christmas party will be at my house
Christmas stories

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Others are broken

Fast Sunday today--my body is saying THANK YOU. My mind not so much, but that's ok. I seem to be coming across scriptures about self-mastery. Also, the RS lesson I was reading was about self-reliance and self-mastery. I need to be looking those up actively, but I haven't been, so I appreciate the Lord helping out.

I'm also seeing some scary visual examples of others who are overweight (all more than me) and having BIG problems because of it. One lady is older than I am and is constantly sick and constantly having knee and leg issues. One is much younger, but is having foot problems, the one who is heaviest, snapped three ligaments in her foot for no reason at all. She says she "just took a step." It sounds like what happens when my knee goes out.

No thanks!! If I must get rickety and have problems because I'm getting older, so be it. But I really DON'T want problems of my own making.  I think this is the worst detour I've had since starting this blog. I wish so much I didn't have to worry or work at it, that I begin to believe that I really can. Not yet. My mind is still much too focused on food. I am, however, going to do everything I can to make my next attempt as little like a diet as possible and as much as the famous "lifestyle" change that everyone talks about. It's only a few small tweaks on the last attempt, but I hope it will make a difference.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Oh my

Oh my oh my oh my. What am I doing? All I want to do is to eat what I want with no consequences. Darn it!! The universe is simply not working my way. Today is especially bad.

Normal breakfast
Snack--1/2 einsteins bagel with schmear---oops
Lunch--saucy meatballs w peas. Alas, we didn't have time to get the magic zero cal noodles
dessert--an apple spice cake doughnut
various small chocolates

Tonight--department dinner at Maddox--fabulous steak and raspberry rolls.

A couple big problems besides the obvious, is that I'm not really hungry. When I eat when I'm not hungry, thats when I gain weight.

Exercise is the number 2 problem. I re-injured my knee in kettlebell on tuesday. I took it easy on Wednesday and babied myself in kettlebell yesterday. I didn't feel as though it would be smart to walk to work today--part of the problem is that I've lost the sleeve for my knee. I'm going to have to replace that. I felt weird yesterday at kettlebell. I didn't WANT to work out, and it's true there were a lot of things that I shouldn't do, but should I have done more? It's so hard for me to tell if I have a genuine reason not to work out,because I'll seize onto lame excuses so fast.

Can I just do ordinary, simple things daily--as in eat in moderation--to conquer this problem? Alas, not without outside help it appears. I KNOW this. I just don't want to believe it. Amazing how stubborn the mind can be. Amazing, how delicious food is. I admit to some excitement beginning to flare up. This is typical of this point in the yo-yo cycle. Yes, there will be a few changes. Are they enough to enable me to stick to a plan? At least until my clothes fit again?  Only time will tell because apparently, I'm not in control at all here.

I AM thankful though for many things

Hilarious cereal--colon blow.
Time for gift wrapping
Enough money for some gifts
Working cars

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Goulash tonight

Wylie's goulash tonight, very healthy--my body might reject. :)  Still easing back toward normal, this feels like the right thing to be doing at this time. Today for breakfast I had a small roll with butter and cheese, chocolate milk and two cuties. Lunch will be at the institute--ergo, a disaster, but dinner should be fine. I also did a kettlebell workout, so that's all good.

I want to keep adding thankful things as often as I can. Today,

I'm thankful that Dave finally apologized

Monday, December 1, 2014

Easing back to normal

OKAY!! I had a wonderful Thanksgiving break. The less said about the food, the better. Friday scared me a little as it was one of the very few times in my life that I ate myself into a slight stomachache. Saturday, still full, I downed a fancy burger at a new place downtown and later followed it up with pizza. Yesterday, was the day I decided to start being a little more reasonable. I wasn't quite prepared to count calories--too drastic, tomorrow is the institute luncheon, Friday is Dave's dept dinner. But other things can be fine. Yesterday was still probably way more than I should have had but it was at least normal-ish.

Breakfast--one pancake, milk, fruit
Lunch--the other slice of pizza (huge thin crust slice from Lucky Slice), some jalapeno nuggets, olives, the crust of Dave's cheesecake
Dinner---early--because we thought we were going to SLC. I was still full. I had a smallish portion of turkey tetrazzini, and a small portion of carrot souffle and yams. NOTHING in that dinner was remotely healthy. The turkey tet had heavy cream and cheese, carrots are a full blown dessert and the yams are marginal.
Dessert--a real piece of the salted caramel cheesecake--and yes, that is every bit as delicious as it sounds.

Today is the last day of my night class, hallelujah!! And again, the goal is to be somewhat normal.
Breakfast--cream of wheat with fruit, 2 slices bacon, a little milk and oj
snack--a few oyster crackers
Lunch--two openface turkey sandwiches on omi bread, cup o soup, an apple and a handful of oyster crackers. The crackers are drenched in oil then baked. Terrific. At least I only make them once a year if that's an excuse.
Dinner-I brought a reasonable sized serving of Turkey tettrazini, and some cabbage salad. There might be last night desserts at my class.

Also, I walked to work today. My leg is still bad. I'm wondering if it really was my knee that slipped out. I'll wait and see how I do after the kettlebell class is over.

Will probably really start trying next week, but obviously December is full of problems that I'm not interested in solving. Catherine's birthday, our work potluck, my bookclub lunch buffet, our work Christmas breakfast, the ward dinner, and of course, Christmas itself. Even still though, I can at least try on days where nothing is going on and also during the other meals on difficult days. Also, now that my leg is at least somewhat better, I can exercise too.