Thursday, October 07, 2010

It is time...

Actually it is long overdue. I sit around 8 months out of the year, bitching about the size of my ass and then how it is to hot outside to do anything about it, that I can not afford to go to a gym, how my *insert body part here* hurts, and a myriad of other lame excuses I tell myself to not get off my ass and lose some weight.

My outlook on myself is a big mess of conflicting emotions. I am comfortable with my physical self and totally uncomfortable at the same time, and it can change at the drop of a hat. I am can be filled with killer self confidence, not giving a crap what anyone else thinks of me, and then Jack will come home and go to touch me in some affectionate way and I close up inside, suddenly feeling 400 pounds and horrendous looking. ( Which is no fault of Jack by the way, he is perfectly happy and attracted to the person I am now, inside and out, sometimes overbearingly so...)

I have known since I was a young teen that my personality and attitude and the way I carry and present myself more than make up for any physical imperfections I have or think I have. Oddly enough, when it comes to the outside world, I really do not care what people think when they look at me. They either like me for me, or they do not, and I do not lose sleep either way. However at home, alone, I look in the mirror and think "Wtf happened to me?"  When did I get so complacent that I allowed myself to get this way? ( By MY standards, not society's unrealistic ones. ) I know WHEN it happened. When I got sick, and was diagnosed with a potentially fatal health condition, I left my job as a restaurant manager, took a few weeks off to get some tests done, and figure out how my life had to change ( not much it turned out ) and went back to work and then got laid off 2 months later, I got depressed, and became a statue. I sat ( and up until recently, as in days, still did ) on the computer constantly, eating because I was bored, because I was depressed and feeling sorry for myself, and because food was my constant companion. Now before you get the wrong idea, please do not have the mental image of me stuffing myself full of candy and junk...I am not that kind of chick. I ate ( and still do eat ) healthy stuff, just a lot of it, therefore making it UNhealthy.

Add to that the facts of I do not like the heat ( I am red headed, very fair skinned, and am very prone to getting burned and heat sick ) I like bugs and biting creatures even less than hanging out in the Florida heat, and I have a bad knee that I have had multiple surgeries on, and you have a woman who never went outside unless she had to. Winter has always been my favorite time of year until last year, when it was so freakishly cold for so freakishly long, and I used that to increase my list of excuses as to why I sat on my ass all day, every day.

My bad relationship with food goes deeper than that, I had a father who would constantly tell me as a child that I was fat, when I was not,he was not a very nice man, we lived out in the woods, with no kids, so food was my friend. I got over that, only to turn into him when it came to how I looked at myself later on. It did not help that after I had my second son, who was about 6 months old, and I had just had the first of my knee surgeries and was walking around on crutches, that my son's father, after having a conversation with my dad, came up to me in my parent's kitchen where I was making our son a bottle, reached around my and grabbed my stomach and JIGGLED it, asking me why was I still fat, was I pregnant again? I was horrified. I was in the best shape of my LIFE when I was pregnant with my son. I weighed 120 when I got pregnant, and I walked everywhere as we had no car, and I only gained 28 pounds with him, and he was a TEN pound baby when he was born. At the time of him grabbing my stomach like that, I weighed 130 pounds...that is it...I was 19 years old, in pain from surgery and doing my best to take care of our infant since he was no help, and he did that to me. So it comes as no surprise that I am the way I am about food, but that is not a good excuse to continue to be that way anymore.

Now I am an intelligent person, and I knew what I was doing was bad for me, but I am a horrible procrastinator, and I fully admit I will put off things as long as humanly possible. So I told myself I needed to eat less and exercise more. Eating less was not a problem, in fact, I got so good at it I only ate once a day, at dinner. Oddly enough, that made things worse. I was still sitting in this chair 15 hours a day, online, and the eating once a day was sending my body into "starvation mode" which is when your body thinks it has to store every bit of food as fat since you are not giving it enough regular fuel to do what it needs to do in a normal way. I made plans with online friends, to co-diet so to speak, but did not follow through. I could not bring myself to eat small meals 5 or 6 times a day as recommended by health experts, because that seemed excessive to me, especially because I was not increasing my physical activity enough to warrant me eating all that extra food. I was going to start walking, but never did, for a few reasons, one being there was a guy on the loose in my area kidnapping and beheading women and dumping them in the national forest not to far from where I live, and because I live in Florida, and it was Summer. Nuff' said.

Then about two weeks ago I was having a conversation with Jack about something, I do not even remember what it was about, grocery shopping most likely, and I ended up getting irritated with myself over my weight. I said to myself that enough was enough and something had to be done, I had to get up and do something instead of sitting in this chair all the time. Then this Monday that just passed Mother Nature decided to give me some motivation. It was 56 degrees outside when I went to take Alex to the bus stop. I felt that spark I get when Winter sets in, and in a spur of the moment decision, I got her on the bus, and instead of going home, I turned right and proceeded to walk down the loooooong dirt road adjacent to my road. I have been walking every morning for four days now. I take my pistol now, since you never know when I might need it, I DO live in the woods, with wildlife all over the place, and for protection against any human who decides fat people are not so hard to kidnap after all. I feel better every day, I walk 3 miles every morning, and on the first day I went, when I reached the bridge that is my turn around point, I was blessed to see a beautiful brown barn owl ( Owl is one of my totems ) 4 feet from my face, sitting at eye level on a branch at the little creek the bridge crosses. I spoke to her and she hooted at me a few times, and I thanked the Mother for giving me her blessing and showing me that I was doing the right thing.

Today I came home and got online to do some research. I took out bad fats from our diet ( not that there was many, I am not a fried food fan, and I seldom use oils or butter unless I have to ) a while back, I cook healthy, but I know there is more to it than that, so I spent my morning checking out various tips and advice and lifestyle change plans so I can help myself even more. For the first time ever, I am excited and feel that I can actually DO this. I have made small changes, I am slowly coming to terms with the fact that I will have to actually eat to lose weight, which is easier now since I am walking, I actually get hungry, and that calorie counting, something I had always scoffed at or thought was for people who had no will power, is actually a pretty vital tool for some people in their quest to have a healthy lifestyle. I live in the south, and grew up on sweet tea, and since I have been walking I have been doing my best to only drink it as dinner, and drink water the rest of the day. So far since Tuesday I have done pretty good. I did have a soda last night, because I have been getting migraines which I attribute to the lack of caffeine from laying off the tea. So I took a BC powder and chased it with a Pepsi, but I also learned that as long as it is in moderation, I can have just about anything I want. The point is not to diet, which is a short term thing, the point is to make a life change, to where this becomes the norm for everyday life, not something I do to lose a few ( Okay a persons worth ) of pounds.

Part of why I am writing this is to put it out there in black and white, to have some sort of accountability for my actions, because if I tell others, then the chances are better that I will stick to it, even though I am doing this for me, because the thought of someone asking me how the weight loss is going while I sit here day after day is a little horrifying to me. I have made so many internal changes over the last 2 years, and now it is time to start working on the outside. I want to see my kids grow up, to maybe play with a few grandchildren one day, not die of a heart attack or diabetes at an early age because I was to lazy and to busy letting my past influence my future. My new life started Monday. I hope to make it last until I draw my last breath...


Unknown said...

you are awesome. and you can do this.

dreaming in maine said...

I came to a very similar conclusion lately myself. I weigh 230 pounds (wow, I've never written that down anywhere before...). I am great at getting started, but keeping up motivation is my downfall. SO, I finally got this coupon in the mail for a free 30 day membership to a local gym...and one that has childcare (I have 2 small children and 1 13 year old). It seemed like a sign! So, I actually go TONIGHT for my orientation. We're going to make some financial sacrifices and I'm (hopefully) picking up some evening work 1 night a week for the extra cash to pay for it. I believe that paying for it will motivate me to get in the car and do it.

Have you tried It's a nice online community/tool where you can record your weight, and food you eat and activity level (but only as much as you CHOOSE to record), chat with others, etc. It's definately a nice additional tool to help see progress "in writing", as it were.

You're so right: it's not neccessarily about what anyone else thinks. But going clothes shopping is horrid when nothing fits right. Feeling tired, achy, and even in pain takes away from our full enjoyment of life. Having too many lumps and bumps on our bodies makes us feel less sexy.

We can do it :)

Tea Witch said...

Well...I think this is awesome. From the lame excuses to the verbal and mental abuse put on by father and I are in the same boat. I currently weight in at 247 and it shames me. I would love to go shopping for new clothes and actually look at how a shirt fits me rather than figure out if it hides the spare tire around my middle (99.9% of the time it doesn't). I would like to look in a mirror and see myself as sexy..not some weird troll thing. You have inspired me Ms.'re awesome. I'm also going to get off my ass, dust off my yoga mat, eat better, and move....Thank you.

Unknown said...

New Follower here...good luck on your endeavor. I find it hard to stick to a plan without support. My goal was to start doing yoga again. Once upon a time I loved it and it made me feel good. After surgeries upon surgery I became lazy which I still am. My yoga mat waits for me to start. Maybe this post will do it for me and I can get started.