Sunday, August 28, 2016

Stupid Choices

Time is ticking by. I feel like I am running out of time to fix my health and get this weight off. Biking is a great habit, but it's just one facet of the whole picture of better health. My eating this week has been so back-and-forth and resulted in a zero loss on the scale this week. I keep doing the same stupid things, like craving Coke when I am PMSing and going to the store to buy ONE CAN of Coke. Not diet Coke, not Coke Zero. Real Coke. I tell myself how great it is that I bought ONE CAN and only drank half, but this is pure bull. Coke is something I crave during PMS. It is also something that is screwing my health... yes, even one (half) can.

Again with the stupid stuff like stopping at the new ice cream store for "just one scoop" because it is homemade and high quality and I threw out the cone and all of that. And with the French bread with dinner because I know how good it tastes and I want a piece. And the hash browns with breakfast because after all they are a vegetable and I am only having a little bit with my healthy eggs and fruit. All of this, little sprinkles of unhealthy choices against a canvas of GOOD choices, always seems so justified to me. Yes I had a cheeseburger on a bun, but I ate fresh CSA box produce and lean protein the rest of the time! Yes I had a donut hole at church with my coffee, but the coffee was black and hey it was just a hole, not an entire donut. All this rationalization and justification is what is keeping me mired in fatness and misery.

I am tired of being huge and in pain, and tired of saying I am tired of it. I am tired of remembering how great I felt at 175 pounds, and looking in the mirror and realizing that I weigh 242 pounds and it is wrecking my joints and my body in so many ways. I feel exhausted most of the time and the last 2 weeks it is getting worse and worse. This is bull crap! I have it in my power to fix this, so why am I not doing it? Sometimes I wonder if obesity is a mental illness.

So I bike (not yesterday because, of course, I needed a "break" and after all, that Coke made me so tired after the caffeine wore off so I skipped the bike and rationalized that I would bike extra today, which I haven't) and I eat low carb and healthy "MOST" of the time (except when I feel like eating spaghetti and meatballs or a piece of lemon pie) and my health continues to crash and burn. I ain't getting any younger, 50 is looming a few years out, and honestly all I can say is this behavior is bull crap. Total bull.

I can sit here on the couch typing and drinking Snapple while declaring that "now's the time to change" and "I am not going to act like that anymore" and "I am done making excuses" but the reality is none of that matters if I don't get off my ample butt and DO IT. So I won't make any proclamations. Doing it is all that matters... not the words. Only the actions.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Something Different

When I was in my 20's, everything in life was so clear. I knew what I wanted (to grow old in rocking chairs on the porch with my husband, lots of children, and a rich spiritual life entwined in church). That's all. I didn't care about money (we had little) as long as we could meet our needs. Love, family, and God was enough when I was out there in the sunshine hanging laundry on the line, watching my toddlers play in the old tractor tire sandbox while my husband and older kids picked carrots and corn in the huge garden. We had fresh air, mountains, a big red barn and plenty of chickens, sheep, and cows. That's all I wanted and I envisioned that state of life to grow and last forever. I thought my husband and I would die of old age there at our farm, after decades of watching sunsets and raising children and serving God. I could not imagine wanting anything more; I was content.

More than two decades later and that dream is nothing more than a memory. All of it evaporated with my husband's new job, a move to a new state, and quickly thereafter, a divorce. There would be no growing old together, no more watching sunsets over the mountains from our rooftop, no more gathering blackberries by the barn. There would not be lots of children or experiencing grandparenting together or a career of stay-at-home mothering. There would not even be church anymore, for many years. Everything I thought I would be doing at 47 is not my reality. Instead of gathering eggs I buy them. Instead of still having toddlers and preschoolers, my youngest is starting middle school. Instead of farm life there is suburbia. And instead of the next 20 years being spent at home with children and grandchildren and a husband of 25+ years, it will be spent doing something else. I don't even know what.

I don't mean to make my life sound dismal; it's not. It's just different, and sometimes confusing, and sometimes I am just not sure what to make of it all. Midlife crisis? Maybe. I've been feeling this way for a couple of years. Today, PMS is making me whiny and irritable and a little bit depressed. This is also the time of month when I look at my body and feel kind of horrified and think "this has to stop!!!" Yet it is also the time of month when I crave junk the most. I feel frustrated and am taking those frustrations out on the bike (which the foster dog decided would be a great snack. Thanks for chewing up the pedal). At least I am getting the riding done. But I want something else and I have this restlessness and I don't know what it is. I want something different. Maybe changing my body and improving my health is the first push in the "something different" direction but it's not the last.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Weight, Life, and Ride Update

It's been several days since I last posted, so it's time for an update, right? I've just been busy with foster pets, family stuff, and back to school preparations. We've had some fun, too, like a day at the fair! I had this plan to eat some barbecued meat and onions on a salad. I didn't do that, though. I ended up sharing a huge plate of chili cheese fries and a funnel cake with the people I went with. As a reward, I got a realllly unpleasant digestive upset that has probably turned me off of fried foods forever. Yuck. But the fair was fun! I also got my stitches out. It bled a little but it seems to be healing okay.

I weighed in on Sunday as usual and was happy to see 242, down another pound! The biking helps, but I do need to watch my intake pretty hard to see regular losses. I've been thinking about doing AIP again to see if I can finally pin down what food may be triggering my rosacea... plus AIP was great for weight loss last time I did it.

Since I last posted, I've ridden another 15.7 miles on my bike. I pedaled out of Washington again and across the Glenn L. Jackson Memorial Bridge over the Columbia River, back into Oregon.

This bridge also crosses Government Island in the middle of the river. Lewis and Clark camped here in 1805 and called it "Dimond Island" because it is shaped like a diamond. They ate some geese, ducks, and swans they hunted there with other men in their party.

After crossing the island, the bridge leads into Oregon.

Soon I biked into Portland (with lots of traffic) but bypassed the downtown area.

Portland has lots of concrete in the form of tunnels and overpasses, but there is still vegetation everywhere! It's my favorite big city.

Tonight or tomorrow I will continue east on I-84 across Oregon until I get to Idaho. It's going to take awhile! You can check my route and progress on My Virtual Mission: Fat Mom Across America.

Catch you later!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Pushing Back

I have really been feeling the call of the couch the last couple of days for whatever reason... not wanting to get on the bike and ride at all. But I have made a commitment to myself and to those who support me here, so I let that feeling of complacency drive me to PUSH BACK and ride even more. Yesterday morning, I  did a couple of short rides with an hour break in between. Continuing on through southern Washington near Vancouver, I pedaled 2 miles, then another 2.1 miles through peaceful country settings (but on an Interstate highway).

Later in the evening, against the desires of my body which wanted to just sit down and chill, I got back on the bike. It was like:

me: omg. It is late, just read a book and go to bed.
myself: No, I want to ride.
me: No you don't! Besides, you already rode today! You can ride more in the morning. Take a break already.
myself: shut up. I am riding.
me: I don't wannnaaaaaaa
myself: Oh yeah? Watch THIS. (shoves the whining me into a box, duct tapes it shut, and gets on the bike).

Then I proceeded to complete my longest single ride yet... 7.5 miles, which took me 45 minutes. Yes, my feet went numb around 25-30 minutes, but I just hopped off briefly and walked around for about 1 minute (not included in my biking time) and got back on and kept going. I ended up here, much closer to the Oregon border.

My total for the day was 11.6 miles... my best day yet. I am working up to a 20-mile day and I feel certain I will get there. Today my knees feel a little wobbly but I am taking anti-inflammatories and getting back on the bike shortly.

Takeaway: Don't listen to your inner fool. Put them in a box and tell them to shut up and show them what you're really made of.

My leg is feeling fine, the stitches are coming out in a few days, and I am determined. Today's meals from the CSA box will include heirloom tomatoes with basil and mozzarella, freshly picked corn on the cob with butter, roasted green beans and carrots, and plums. Protein will come in the form of eggs from my neighbor's chickens, some fish I pick up at the store later and maybe a protein shake. Looking to get this weight off for the last time.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

I Don't Want to Ride

It started yesterday. Have you ever had that kind of busy, emotionally and physically draining day where all you can think about is getting home, taking off your bra and plopping down with a bag of chips to watch mindless TV? (No? Am I the only one who decompressed that way??) Yesterday was that kind of day. Lots of driving, taking care of a sick kitten, taking a dog to the vet and going shopping and hitting the mall, meeting another mom and kids for a playdate. Getting things ready for school, paying the bills, and running errands. Then coming home to company for dinner but having to get back in the car again to take my daughter bowling with friends... and then having to go back and get her afterwards. Just total general Mom stuff... nothing huge... but it didn't give me time to let my brain relax or sit down and chill for a bit, at all. I even missed my usual quiet time in the morning having coffee because I was out the door by 6:45 meeting other rescue folks to help some animals. I'm not complaining... I chose this life and I do love it. But generally I love it more with an hour or two of free time in my day. I soooooo did not want to bike in between all of this... but I did it - twice.

Yesterday I did two rides of 3.7 and 2.4 miles, for a total of 6.1 miles. I did it grudgingly and muttered to myself a bit on the bike, but I did it because I am committed and I want better health for myself. And I want to reach my goal of getting this 3,035 mile ride across America done by my blog anniversary next August.

The scenery was pretty as usual, riding through Washington and passing by Martin Island on the Columbia River.

I do love the views here in the Pacific Northwest. It's pretty flat along this stretch of highway.

That was yesterday. Want to know how much I rode today? That's right, a bit, fat zero miles. Even though I was home for most of today, I did not feel like riding the bike AT ALL. I wanted to watch TV and eat chocolate bars all afternoon. But instead I am working on laundry and cooking and cleaning, more basic Mom stuff. I feel happier today and am still committed to getting on the bike before the day is over. I'll hop on after dinner and see how far I can get!

The difference between the old me and the current me? The old me gave in and ate chips or candy bars and watched TV and skipped the biking. The current me says NOPE, and gets on the bike anyway. I am finally getting back into the mindset that i was in when I lost this weight the first time: the only option is to DO IT.

I will update my miles in the comments later and also on My Virtual Mission.