Thursday, February 26, 2009

Weigh In : Super Scale Victory!

Weigh In : 150.0 = 3.4 lbs lost!

Yes! I rule. I lost my entire two week gain and THEN some. It felt really fantastic. I didn't even get disappointed that I was SO close to breaking out of the 150s!

I talked a lot in my meeting last night, which was about Tracking. Because I've been on Weight Watchers for more than a year, I feel like I know a thing or two about the subject. I brought up the WW mobile site, which has been very helpful to me with being able to access it from my Blackberry.

I shared the struggles of getting sick of tracking after some time and how that usually results in maintaining my weight or gaining. The plus side to that end result is that I've obviously learned a LOT in the last year that allows me to maintain even when not paying attention.

However, having that loss has totally motivated me to keep at it. I feel extremely proud of where I am right now.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Back on Track 2 (electric boogaloo)

I am sitting down (in a few minutes) to a total OP dinner, to end a totally OP day. Though I wish I weren't eating so late, I DID make it to my African Dance class where I burned 618 calories. I also walked to and from the train, which I didn't count as activity, but I'm using it as a semi-safety net. It's not actually that far, but I really hate walking.

Here are some food pictures of things I've eaten lately.

Last night's dinner. Quorn "chicken" cutlet + green bean and corn salad + quinoa + spinach.

Today's Lunch : Ravioli with roasted cauliflower and tomatoes + spinach

Tonight's dinner : Homemade tapenade atop salmon fillet + spinach + tomato drizzled with oil and balsamic vinegar

Monday, February 23, 2009

Workout Stats : Monday : 2/23/09

Workout Stats : 583 calories burned
+15 minutes Stepmill
+15 minutes bike
+15 minutes elliptical
+1 mile walk

It's been a while since we've had a Workout Stats post, huh Blog? Well there it is. It's nothing to get too excited about. I didn't push myself because I didn't want to ruin everything on my first day back to the gym in a long (embarrassingly long) time. I feel just fine about the amount of calories I burned versus the amount of effort I put in.

Tomorrow I am headed back to African dance class with my sister at Zenon Dance Company downtown. My only hope is that I don't suggest going to the Imperial Room, my favorite martini bar, afterwards or I will DEMOLISH any progress I have made by being completely OP today!

I have a busy work day planned out for tomorrow, and then I intend to come home, cut Justin's hair and hang out for a bit, take the dog on a walk with my pedometer, and then dance my butt off. Last time we took that class I burned almost 700 calories, so I'm pretty excited. I also plan to walk to the train station, assuming it doesn't snow buckets tomorrow.

All in all, I'm quite proud of being OP today, but the day is not over. I'm being very strategic about what I eat for dinner and whether or not I'll allow myself to have a food dessert, or if I should just stick to hot cocoa as my late night treat.


I have fallen so far off the damn path, I literally feel lost.

What once was second nature to make a good decision has fallen by the wayside and old habits are winning every single time. I have literally eaten bar food for 3 out of the last 5 nights. And not just a couple of bites of someone's fries, straight up burgers, tots, mayo, seasoned sour cream, oh my.

What am I doing?

I don't even really like bar food. I like it's convenience, sure, but it doesn't taste that great. Ok, that's a lie. 2 out of those 3 meals were REALLY REALLY good. And one was a grilled chicken sandwich, so still a better decision than a burger... sort of.

This is a lesser of two evils game as you get into it for the long haul. I really want to blame TOM because I have been cooking all weekend. There were healthy options around, but it wasn't what my body wanted. Even though I searched... sort of... for suitable solutions, in the end the grease won.

I've decided that today I can eat whatever I want if I just get up and go to the gym. So far, I've eaten nothing. I AM going to go to the gym for a full-on workout, and I'm guessing that's going to inspire me to stop being such a lazy weight watcher.

Any advice you have to offer to knock some sense into me is welcome. I feel totally lost.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sunday : Giving up on avoiding you.

Hi blog.

I've been avoiding you. I'm sure you've noticed. Remember when I promised to be good? Remember the Just for Today Challenge? Well, I've renamed it the Just til Tomorrow Challenge, apparently.

I've had a bad couple of days. They were preceded by a bad couple of weeks. The worst part is that I know what the problem is here. I am too busy, but not in a challenging way. My current obligations are time consuming, but mundane. Last year, this is when I scheduled out time to hit the gym, hardcore, to really challenge myself. I'd love to be back in that mindset, but I am so incredibly bored with the gym, I can't even stand being there.

I'm going to start taking the dance classes I was talking about. I'm ok with ponying up a little extra money if it will keep me on track. Justin has also started nurturing his interest in running, so I'm going to try to re-start Couch to 5k and get back on track with that. Maybe by spring we will be running together outside. Anything healthy we can do together is a plus.

The only real news, I suppose, is that I got a Blackberry last week and it's taken me a few days to even figure out how to make a call. Now I have all my mobile features set up (Twitter, Facebook, Gmail, etc) and I found out how to use Weight Watchers Mobile, so that is going to be VERY helpful to have a points calculator handy at the grocery store.

Yesterday, due to TOM, I decided (as usual) to skip the gym. I did, however, make a conscious decision that I needed to get some activity and not sit in bed all day, which is what I really wanted to do. I called up Jessica and we decided to spend the early part of the evening at the Mall. I stopped at Target, picked out the cheapest pedometer available. We walked 9612 steps in about 3.5 hours. The WW Activity Points Tracker has a section that translates your steps (based on stride length) into APs. For someone as short as I am, which a relatively tiny stride length, this amount of steps earned me 3 APs, which seems reasonable.
I'm happy to have this little toy. I think it will be a fun way to get in extra activity. I actually HATE walking places. I'd much rather ride my bike, so this will help me change it up.
I'd like to say I'm GOING to be back on track today. I WANT to be back on track today. So far I AM on track today.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

HOLD UP! WAIT A MINUTE! It's peanut butter edit time.

I wanted to make a small, but very important distinction. When I said, yesterday, that I was up 2.8lbs, I mean from my meeting weight 2 weeks ago. Clear? Clear.

Because I weighed myself at home last week, in clothes, around a similar time I would have been at the meeting... this week I really only gained....


Not bad, not bad.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Dinner : Wednesday : 2/18/09 : Sausage Party!

Balsamic Sausage and Peppers (and zucchini) = 4 points
This is so incredible, I'm eating it right now. V e r y S l o w l y. This is another of the new recipes from my "Now and Later" cookbook. On Friday this will turn into Sausage Shepherds Pie. Delicious!

In meeting news, I am only up 2.8lbs, which might sound like a lot to some people, but I was genuinely convinced I had gained over 5lbs. This is over 2 weeks, mind you, because I missed my meeting last week in favor of beef wellington puffs and cocktails. Oopsie.

I'm very excited to be back on track. Though I probably won't complete all the rules for the Just for Today Challenge for the day, in fact I know I won't, I will just chalk it up as a successful day either way. I made the effort to go to my meeting. I faced the scale. I celebrated the results, which wowed my meeting receptionist, whom I LOVE, and I took full ownership for this extra weight. And I quite honestly told my entire group that it was worth every pound. It really was. I hope that won't dissuade anyone from their progress, but you can't live on a "diet" all the time. Life happens, enjoy it, then deal with it.

I think I'll take some time tomorrow to reflect on our meeting topic, which was Healthy Habits (and not Tracking, which I originally thought. That is next week).

Checking in on Hunger

Today is the first day of my Just for Today Challenge. So far, so good. I've been checking in with myself and my hunger signals today, and the funny thing is, I haven't eaten much at all because of this.

I did have breakfast, but it was light - as usual. A kid's Clif Z bar in Chocolate Brownie and a huge mug of coffee. It's organic, if that helps to excuse the fact that I had chocolate for breakfast.

I allowed myself to get overly hungry in the afternoon - around lunchtime. However, because there was nothing to binge on (I was in the car), I had to wait until I got home. At that point, I was ravenous, but rather than dig in, I did the dishes and had a glass of water to tame it. The reason I did this is a) I wanted to eat what I actually wanted, rather than the first (and second and third) thing I saw, b) I literally had no dishes left.

In the end, nothing in the fridge actually sounded good, though I would have eaten any of it. I decided to head to the co-op for sushi. I also made a stop at Target to print out my "Before" pictures to show my leader, who has no idea what I looked like when I was heavier.

I started to get some pangs of hunger about an hour ago, but my meeting is tonight and I have WI at 6:45pm. I decided to have a snack, but first, I had a glass of water and sat down to really think about what I wanted.


.... and cake.

I decided to meet in the middle and make my favorite caramel apple snack with the Sugar-Free Creamy Caramel pudding I love so much. It totally cured that sweet tooth craving.

Now I'm off to the meeting. I'm incredibly excited about the topic and I will report back. I'm also making the most DELICIOUS DINNER on the planet! Expect pictures!

Thoughts from the Desk : Three in a row.

I'm feeling very inspired today.

I finally feel like maybe I can make this work, even if just for Today. I have my meal plan set, I'm going to my meeting tonight, I'm going to face the scale. I want to come up with something to say to myself before I step on. Something to remind me that this doesn't mean I've failed, but that I've given myself a new challenge and I need to step it up.

My last day of "freedom" didn't go as well. The first half of the day I was completely OP, but then I had a date with a small serving of Reduced Fat 'Nilla Wafers. I tracked them... but then I ate another serving. When I went to track it, I didn't like the number so I just left it off.

Why do I do this?

I'm very frustrated with the way my mind works in that aspect. As if I think not putting it into my points tracker will mean that I didn't really eat that. As if making up a new number somehow magically makes it true? Last night, at a networking function I was hosting, I had 2 champagne cocktails, a chocolately martini and a bbq pork sandwich without the cheese. I didn't track any of this, but I'm telling you right now. I'm not going to track it either, because today is a new day, it's a new week and I'm back on track.

Obviously I didn't follow through on my second Two Week Totally OP Challenge. But I'm starting a new challenge with myself, similar, but with different rules.

Just for Today Challenge
  • Get in all of the Good Health Guidelines (GHG)
  • Half of my daily points target (24) will be filling foods
  • Earn at least 3 APs
  • Track every single thing that passes my lips

For every day that I am able to complete all of these rules, I am going to put $1 in my fishbowl. (I don't have a fish, so it's really a dollar bowl.) When I am able to complete 5 JTC days in a row, I am going to treat myself to a latte at my favorite coffee shop, and actually get it "for here" and read.

It doesn't sound that exciting, but its something I really enjoy but never have a chance to do.

Part of me is excited to see what I'm working with at my meeting tonight. I'm bursting at the seems wanting to talk about what I did and try to get advice from people, but with my Mom attending the meetings I feel uncomfortable. It's a shame, because I don't think I'll get what I need out of them if this continues. I don't mean to blame here for it, because only I can control my actions, but I fell off the wagon the week she came to meetings. I spent so much time focusing on her, and her WW journey, answering her calls, helping her shop, etc... that I never had time to focus on mine.

Plus the parties.

I want to be a good daughter and a good support system, but I also need to be that for myself and find that for myself.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Thoughts from the Desk : Coffee with a splash of Fear

I am literally dreading my Weight Watchers Meeting tomorrow. Well... technically the part of me that loves having something to do is very excited, the part of me that had a complete and utter FAIL of a week (or 2) is not.

I'm spending some time reflecting this morning on the point of dreading the meeting. Why? Yes, I know I gained. No amount of avoidance is going to change that. The only way to change that is to knock it off. I can't eat with abandon and expect to lose weight. Losing weight is hard, I know this, I've been doing it for a year.

I feel like I've lost my motivation. It was so much easier to realize what I was working for when I got up in the morning and couldn't fit into my biggest pair of pants, when I was constantly mistaken for a pregnant lady, when I hated my body and the way my weight affected my health.

Now, I wake up and I feel ok about it all. I feel like I'm in decent health. I like the way my body looks in clothes, for the most part. But I'm a woman, there will always be some sort of doubt there whether I'm a size 2 or a size 20.

I really don't mean to turn these last couple posts into long whining sessions, but I think that's what I need right now. I feel as though I've lost my support system in this adventure. The gym and I have grown apart, and the world around me has invited me in... for cake.

I'm sure that after I weigh in tomorrow and see the SEVERITY of the damage I've done and how far away from the 140s I've gotten when I was so desperately close to seeing them, it will kick me back into gear. I'm afraid I might cry a little. I'm afraid that the meeting people will judge me, especially because we just celebrated my 50lb milestone. I even mentioned to Justin that I thought they might take away my medal.

I know that's silly and they won't do that, but fear is irrational. It exists because it is the unknown, and I'm certainly the type of person who doesn't always appreciate surprises. I like to plan and I like to know outcomes before I participate.

I've set a few goals for this week following the meeting. I have an estimate of my gain, but I'm not really sure what it will be in the evening.
  • Earn at least 20 APs. I giggle a little bit at this goal, considering 4 months ago I was earning 35 APs per week. That's not the reality now and I need to meet myself where I am. This will be hard for me, but I know it will make all the difference.
  • Must finish @home To-Do list before any "fun outings." I love this goal, because it's literal translation is "Don't go out," but I'm giving myself an opportunity to earn at least one "fun outing" this week if I get my butt in gear and do some of the things I keep saying I'll do around the house. These projects will keep me busy for at least 4 nights after work, which keeps me away from food and parties.
  • Track. It's as simple as that, and I haven't been doing it. As if, in some magical way, all of you and my meeting leader and my friends etc, would be able to see how badly I screwed up if I actually put it down in words (or points). I need to be held accountable. Those 35 extra points don't get renewed every day, and I've been living like they do.

I hope I can be successful this week. I HAVE TO BE SUCCESSFUL this week. I cannot let anymore of my hard work slip away. Moderation is the key. Moderation is the key. Moderation is the key.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Thoughts from the Desk - Midmorning + Coffee

Today is one of those "struggle" days. I know all of the mistakes I've continued to make even after vowing I'd turn it all around. I think missing my meeting this past week was a very bad idea, though I had fun with my replacement activity, it wasn't in line with my weight loss goals.

The problem right now is that areas of my life are conflicting. I've got a part of me dedicated to meeting new people for both personal and professional gains. I want to make more friends, and with each person I meet, I discover something new about myself. The hurdle here is that people my age (20s and 30s) socialize over food and booze, and it's hard to get people out of that comfortable rut.

Another part of me is working diligently on utilizing those new connections and scouring various outlets for career opportunities - while working full time. This strategy basically has me tied to my computer, a place I love to consume small but copious amounts of calorie laden snacks.

And lastly, there is that part that still wants to finish this journey. I know I can do this. I know I have it in me to finish. I really do understand all the things I need to do, and not do, to get there.

Some parts of me believe that letting go here and there (like these last 2 weeks) help keep me on a sustainable path. Sure, I'll gain. Sure, it will slow down my progress to the end "goal;" but it does show me how much I have learned this time around when a binge is eating 2 cups too many of vanilla yogurt rather than eating my way out of 3 bags of Arby's curly fries.

There has to be some sort of compromise. I think I understand that I can continue to utilize the lessons I've learned and lose or maintain IF I keep my activity level up. Failing that, I must simple eat less. It sounds so easy, but it's really hard to put into play when my entire calendar is full of networking events offering free drinks and food.

What do you do to balance your journey with events like this? Any tips or tricks for braving the never ending see of social opportunity mixed with delicious food and drink?

Sunday, February 15, 2009

No Wonder "Value Menus" are so Popular!

I just wanted to comment on how expensive it is to be healthy. You've got the gym membership, buying new clothes as you lose weight, keeping on top of your running shoes, etc etc. There's a lot of things to spend your money on.

In this economy, the grocery bill has been the most daunting factor in my weight loss adventure.

As a small family of 3, I probably shouldn't complain, but my love for cooking and trying new foods can really empty my pockets. I've been relying heavily on the Weight Watcher's cookbook line for the last year to give me ideas for low point food that is still exciting and family friendly.

Two weeks ago, I bought a great one that I wanted to share with you.

The 2009 Now and Later cookbook. The premise is that you make one meal, and implement components from that first meal into the second. This week, as I was planning my grocery list, I consulted "the book" as I will now call it. I picked 4 pages worth of meals (8 meals, what I typically shop for) and added the needed items to the list plus all of my staples.
I've already been grocery shopping, and the total bill was $165 versus the $250-$270 we generally spend at the grocery store.
That probably sounds like a lot to the single ladies or coupled ladies, but you'd be surprised how quickly this food goes away. Plus, living in Minnesota, our produce is very expensive during the winter because it's not from here (ick! I can't wait until the Farmer's Market is running again).
I'm so excited to have saved this $100 dollars and can't wait to get cooking.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

I made these cupcakes for my Mom and the other nurses working on Valentine's Day. Every holiday that she works I always try to make some little treat, not overly sweet. These are 1 point cupcakes made from angel food, sugar free jello drizzled into holes and set over night, cool whip free frosting and little raspberry hearts. If you eat 2 cupcakes, it's 3 points. Still completely and totally OP.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Best. Snack. Ever.

SwissMiss Diet Cocoa + Fat Free ReddiWhip = 0 points
Whenever I get the craving for something sweet, I have two stand-by liquid snacks. Crystal Light is one of them, this is the other. I try to utilize these before I go after whatever it is I originally wanted. If, after I've had my zero point snack, I still want it... I'll have it.
But usually, this takes care of anything. Yum.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Breakfast : Thursday : 2/12/2009 : Scrambled

1/2 cup Egg Beaters, 1 wedge Laughing Cow Cheese, Spinach & Tomato Scramble with 1/2 cup Fat Free Cottage Cheese and Morning Coffee = 4 points

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Dinner : Tuesday : 2/10/09 Taco Salad

Spinach Salad + Tomato + Chiles + Leftover Chicken Crock Stuff = 3 points
The leftover "Chicken Crock stuff" is my favorite slowcooker recipe. It's not even a recipe. It's literally opening a jar of salsa, a can of black beans and a tray of chicken breasts and putting them all in the crockpot. Lid on. Temperature low. Leave it for about 6-7 hours and you have a delicious meal.
I love it because I only use little tortillas, the small ones that are just slightly larger than a saucer. I can have "fill" about 3 of those tortillas with the concoction for around 5 points (the tortillas make up 1/2 of that total) because the crockpot lets the chicken cook and stay super tender so we just "shred" it by working through it with a fork. That way you use about 1-1.5oz of chicken rather than the 5-6oz breast you typically want to eat.


I'm feeling slightly terrified today. I didn't realize that I had placed so much emphasis on my meeting weigh in. I see why people in meetings lose more weight, you're definitely accountable to someone. And even though I'm sure she wouldn't care, I don't want to let my leader down by having a gain this week.

And I will. Gain, that is.

So many excuses are spinning around in my head. Mainly though, that I am going to the vita.MN hotness party at the W tonight (or at least I hope I am) and if I go to my meeting I will have very limited time to get ready. That's a REALLY stupid excuse, especially because the meeting ends about an hour before I intended to leave in the first place.

I am literally full of excuses for everything lately. I haven't been going to the gym. I haven't been spending as much time with Justin because I have so much work to do and we have opposite schedules.

I really need to figure out how to make this a priority for me again.

Two Week Totally OP Challenge starts TODAY.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Thoughts from the Desk : Cheaty McCheat Face

I binged today.

It started with a donut. Today was the MN Coalition for the Homeless "Day at the Capitol." It's a lobbying day for agencies working toward ending homelessness to arrange and attend meetings with legislators. Our agenda this year requires a jump in spending where there have been cuts, but the recent upsurge in homelessness due to job loss, mortgage crisis and various other factors serve to keep it in the forefront of our lawmakers minds.

I secured a ride there with my Executive Director. We had to make a stop... for coffee and donuts. It was one of those situations where you can't really turn it down or risk seeming rude. I mean, of course I could have said "no," but it would have made for uncomfortable conversation. At least this way we could talk about how good the donuts were (they were).

After lobbying, I caught a ride back to the office, finished up some things and came back here to work from my home office. It was definitely lunch time, especially since I never really had breakfast and donuts serve no purpose but to keep you perpetually wanting more donuts. I ate the last of the Quinoa Caprese salad I made, which was pretty much almost 2 portions (making it 12 points, running total is 18 points, plus coffee = 19 points for the day so far. I only get 24). After bringing the tupperware to the sink, I still felt hungry. So I ate some of the Chicken/Spinach Couscous (around 4 points worth = 23 points). That wasn't enough, so I had some Crystal Light (0!) in an attempt to stop the binge.

No go.

Next I moved on to Fruit Leather. This would have been fine if I stuck to the one (1 point), but instead I had 3 (4 points = 27 points). I cracked down on work at this point and genuinely didn't have time to focus on why I wanted to eat so bad... and I stopped.

During a bathroom break, I decided to make some popcorn (2 points = 29 points). Later, I had a gigantic bowl of cereal, which under normal portion pretenses would be 1.5 points (4 points = 33 points).

I'm updating this right now in an attempt to STOP THE BINGE! I made a mug of diet hot cocoa (0) and I'm going to get very creative with a low point dinner. It's ridiculous that I am almost 10 points over and have not eaten dinner - traditionally my highest point meal of the day.

I'm ultra-disappointed in myself because my weigh in is tomorrow. I'm not going to claim to have done well this week. In fact, I pretty much fell all the way off track on Saturday night eating coconut cookies, chocolate flan cake and various other disasters.

I pledge that it ends now. It would be so easy to let it end tomorrow though...

I am re-starting the 2 week TOTALLY OP challenge tomorrow. I can do it.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Breakfast : Monday : 2/09/09 : Sweet (potato) Breakfast

1/2 cup Egg Beaters + 1 cup diced Sweet Potato + 2/3 cup plain fat-free Yogurt = 6 points
Yummy. A recent goal of mine has been to spend a little more time on myself. I know that I constantly complain in this blog about how busy I am, can't make it to the gym, work is crazy, stress stress stress.. but that needs to change. I have the time to slow down, I just don't use it.

This breakfast is one of my attempts. It's not as if it took long to make, but traditionally on a Monday morning (or.. afternoon) I would opt for cereal or instant oatmeal as a breakfast item. This plate feels like cheating and it's full of protein which will hopefully help me when I make time to visit the gym in a few hours.

On the topic of that goal, I've also decided to start that fashion blog. I'm hoping it will help me to break out of my wardrobe rut, allow me to spend a little more time giving thought to my appearance and provide an additional outlet for me to reflect on body confidence as it comes and goes. It's a silly idea, but I'm excited to work on it. If you're curious, you can find it at

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Thoughts from the Desk : Clothing and Body Confidence

I've been feeling compelled to write something about how losing weight is such a good propellant for a total life transformation. A make-over if you will.

In my weight loss travels, I've definitely gone out of my way to develop my new sense of style. Really, it's the same sense of style I've always had, but lacked the guts and/or the ability to fit my big butt into. I remember when I was at my heaviest, the discovery of Lane Bryant stores being my saving grace. Discovery might be the wrong word, it's not as if I didn't know they existed, but I didn't realize that I could mix and match pieces from various stores to put together outfits that flattered my size 18/20 shape. It may have been more of an acceptance and excitement about still being able to feel "put together" at a larger size. My excitement about my outfits and the way I looked exuded confidence, and I felt beautiful.

I wish that clothing didn't have that affect on me. It ends up being a costly hobby and practice. However, this isn't Woodstock and I can't run around naked - nor would I want to - so I feel fashion is a perfectly acceptable thing to be obsessed with. We have to wear clothes, society rejects nudists as weirdos, and shopping is a fun way to kill time.

The first step to finding your style is understanding your shape. When I was at my heaviest, I didn't really have a shape - I just knew that I had to find things that fit. When I was going through stages of embarrassment, I would buy maternity clothes, thinking that if there was a lot of fabric hiding my growing fat baby, no one would know it was there. The end result was counter-productive. I ended up getting asked numerous times when I was due, or being told that pregnancy really agrees with me.


Now that I've shed some of that, and I've taken my measurements, I understand that right now, in this moment, I am a classic hourglass. (I do have a sneaking suspicion that when I reach goal I will be more of a Pear... but for now, I'm HG.) Finding ways to draw attention to the smallest part of my body (the waist) has been a fun fashion adventure. I've collected over 25 belts in various colors and widths and began my love affair with high waisted trousers. I've also discovered that t-shirts should probably not hit mid-thigh if I intend to show off any of my curves and high heels do wonders for elongating a 5'2" frame.

I feel shallow writing about this, but I do associate my fashion and sense of style with my femininity. A friend of mine was recently discussing finding her femininity. She had always believed it meant to wear makeup, do your hair and wear dresses, but has discovered it is more about power, confidence and nurturing. I agree with that, but I also agree that I draw those traits from the way I present myself to the world. Feeling beautiful, in this society of ultra judges, gives me confidence - which in turn keeps my spirit up, which then allows me to nurture others, which unfolds the power.

It's a domino effect, in a positive manner.

The reality is, as we drop pounds and sizes, clothing can be a huge motivator and a wonderful way to reward yourself. Spend some time discovering your shape, and play around with different styles. Overdress for everything, wear heels to the grocery store, have fun with it.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Thoughts from the Desk: Relapse

After reeling from my 50lb milestone, I had a body confidence relapse today in the "Intimate Apparel" department of Macy's.

I am in desperate need of bras and I wanted to get a new professional fit to be sure I was wearing the correct size, as it's been about 6 months and 15lbs since my last fitting. I had a literal breakdown in the fitting room after trying on 37 bras (SO not kidding about this number) and not finding a single one to contain the excess. I know that sounds gross, and I'm actually really proud of how incredibly toned I am keeping the rest of my body, but you can't lift weights with your boobs. You just can't, I've tried.

I know this is just a reality of going from a 40 E to a 38 DDD to a 36 DDD at last measure... as of today I am a 32 DD or 34 D, depending on brand and/or style. I left empty handed and teary eyed.

I'm back in high spirits, but it pains me to think that for about 25 minutes I was gently considering the idea that a little bit of weight gain (assuming I could target it to the ladies) might be a good one. It especially did not help when the saleslady told me that I should start considering surgery so I could still look feminine. Really? Thanks Macy's lady. She also tried to sell me a bra that looked like something Madonna would wear circa 1987, so I'm not worried about her professional opinion.

Either way, I spent a good portion of the night in the kitchen preparing things to nuke over the weekend. It's going to be a busy and exciting one but for tonight I am staying in and laying low.

I prepared: Quinoa Caprese salad, Chicken-Roasted Garlic-Spinach couscous, Butternut Squash with Apricot Jam and Parmesan Spinach Fettucinni.

Everything is tucked away in tupperware, ready to eat when the craving hits.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Huge Milestone : 50 pounds lost!

Totally did it! This week I weighed in at 150.6 with clothes on at the meeting. That's even LESS than I was on Monday when I weighed in at home first thing in the morning! I feel fantastic. It was so great to have people clap, ask me for advice, AND to have my Mom there. My leader, Diane, was even nice enough to fill me up with all the fun trinkets I WOULD have gotten if I'd been in meetings the entire time.

The pictures are of my new key ring, which you apparently get at 10%, my 25lb medal and my 50lb medal!

SANE wins today. BFN is out to lunch.

Thoughts from the Desk : Who's your alter ego?

I've been thinking a lot lately about the ebbs and flows of this journey. I actually kind of hate calling it a journey, I just want to make that clear. Somewhere along the line I picked up the jargon and now it's a difficult habit to break free of.

What else could I call this? I'm open to suggestions.

There are days when I am 100% completely dedicated to my Weight Watchers lifestyle. It is those days I think more along the lines of my internal health, my attitude, how I present myself to the world and how I can give back. When I am working hard to be healthy, my outlook on life is generally positive. There are other days where it takes me over 20 minutes to get out of bed in the morning, and when I look in the bathroom mirror, I see the same old fat me. Big Fat Nicole. BFN for short. BFN comes out when I am crabby. I instantly feel threatened and become defensive about anything that has anything to do with me and even things that don't.

BFN loads the bowl with 2 cups of ice cream and tracks it as way less because, really, who's going to know.

Then, BFN goes back for seconds.

BFN wants other people to fail on the off chance that it will give her time to catch up, or at the very least make her look better.

BFN doesn't have a lot of friends.

BFN must die.

Luckily, today is not a BFN day, nor was yesterday. In fact, BFN days are getting more few and far between. The difficulty for me and the struggle I am going through lately, is correcting the damage that BFN has done in my life. How do you show your new self to people? When will they accept that this is really who you are and BFN is not?

I guess that part is all about persistance; consistancy. I know that this lifestyle has changed me. I still interrupt people, but it's only because of my strong and urgent need to help them. Everything that I do wrong comes from the most loving places of my heart. I've learned to apologize and admit that I'm wrong.

These are big things.

What can be the acronym for the good Nicole? The real Nicole? The person I am now. Super Awesome Nicole Everyday? (sane)

SANE. I kind of like the sound of that.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Snack Attack : Caramel Apple

Apple + Sugar Free "Creamy Caramel" Pudding = 2 points
In response to Jessica's latest post in which she totally trashes my favorite dessert (ice cream!!!) I found myself wondering how I could be spending my own dessert points a little better. Tonight's solution was to make up for a missing fruit/vegetable serving from my GHGs, so I decided to pair an apple with a single serve portion of the new flavor of Sugar Free Jello Pudding I found at the store : Creamy Caramel.

The outcome is decidedly declicious and perfect for late night snacking, which is how I tend to do most of my desserting in the first place. I like the idea that I feel like I'm having more, it takes me longer to eat and it is riculously tasty. Plus, dipping is always fun.

I'm sold. Love it. Try it.

To Cupcake, or not to Cupcake?

My friend Ben just dropped off this adorable half-dozen cupcakes as a thank you gift. I have my eye on the coconut one, but I have to bring a snack to my board meeting tonight. What an easy solution to this delicious problem. Do I keep them here and enjoy one a day for 6 days... OR ... bring them to the meeting, grab the coconut one right away and share the wealth?

Monday, February 2, 2009

Weigh IN - Fab (one hundred) Fifty.

Weigh In : 150.8 (-0.8lbs)

Yay! I didn't make it into the 140s this weigh in, but I suspect it had something to do with the giant plate of nachos I ate last night, and the beer I had during SCRABBLEBOWL 09. Oh well.

The awesome part is that because the number on the scale officially read 150 - I put up a new PROGRESS PHOTO and retook my measurements! (very bottom of page)

Feeling pretty excellent about everything I've accomplished and I'm ready to start this new week with the same motivation.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Workout Stats : Sunday : 2/01/09

Workout Stats : Sunday : 866 calories burned
+ 30 minutes Strength Training
+30 minutes Stepmill Dance
+30 minutes Stationary Bike
+1.5 mile run

Awesome. I kept my word (finally). It felt great to be back at the gym, though it was very hard to focus on the task at hand when we are having a beautiful Minnesota winter day above freezing. It's sunny and I wore a vest instead of a jacket - traditionally the way I tell myself it's Spring or Fall after the changing of seasons. I realize it's not Spring, but it was a fun dip into fantasyland either way.

Today is SuperBowl Sunday, traditionally a day I attend a party with my Dad and all of his friend's and their kids that I grew up with. I'm opting out both because I don't trust myself with yummy snacks and because I don't feel like driving all the way out to Eagan where the Hogans, who are hosting this year, live. Instead I'm going to get together with good friends and hold a SCRABBLEBOWL.

I'm doing damage control today because of the stupid benefit dinner last night. Drinking lots and lots of water and doing my best to eat light with minimal sodium (oops, shouldn't have eaten that soup I guess). I'm excited to weigh in tomorrow, but realize that my overindulgence last night could have detrimental effects on the results. Just knowing I saw that 4 on the scale (not once but twice) will keep me motivated to stay OP.

Triumphant Return to the Gym!

I have officially packed my gym bag. I am going back to the gym after something like 1.5 weeks out. I'm excited to go and hopeful that I will push myself as much as I know I need to after last night's events.

That size 6 dress guided me into a size 18 meal at the Star Awards for the Angel Foundation. I ate too much and I know it. I had 2 glasses of wine and a huge chocolate torte dessert. I don't really feel bad about it, however. It was delicious and I had a great time getting fancy. Here's a picture of me in my dress.

I'll be back with an update about my workout stats as soon as I have them!