Monday, February 23, 2009

A Weight Update, and Head Games

Oh man, I am feeling rough. I have had a toothache for a couple of days now, with some swelling around the gums. It's gotten a little better today but I still feel like someone punched me in the side of the face. I feel kinda ill. The dentist is supposed to see me in about 2 weeks but if this isn't better in a couple of days I am going to try and get an "emergency" appointment. I hope it's nothing major! But I just feel icky from it and headachey.

So here's how I am doing, weight-wise. Two weeks ago I weighed 237. Last Monday, after a week of pretty good effort, I was down 2 pounds to 235. Today, a week of near perfect eating and exercise, I weigh 229. That's a 6 pound loss this week! Pretty darn good. I know I won't lose six pounds a week very often, but if I can do even six pounds a MONTH I will be thrilled.

Congratulations, right? It's great to have an 8 pound loss over the last two weeks. And I am so proud! But here's the head game I play with myself. What did I weigh on February 1? I weighed 230 pounds. So I have lost a whole one pound this month. One measly pound in three weeks! That sucks! And in fact, I also weighed 230 pounds on January 1! So I lost one pound in SEVEN weeks. How disheartening is that?? Because I gained 7 pounds during the first week of February, my really great 8 pound loss in two weeks actually looks like a crappy one pound loss in two MONTHS. THAT is the head game.

You know you've played it, if you've been trying to lose weight for long. You go all year, up and down. You stall, you gain 20 pounds, you stall and goof around some more. You finally get your act together and lose 30 pounds during the last 3 months of the year. WOW!! What an accomplishment! That's a fantastic loss by any definition. But then it dawns on you that you only weigh ten pounds less than you weighed a year ago. It took you a year to lose ten pounds. And you get so discouraged that you eat a box and a half of Twinkies and cry yourself to sleep, weeping, "I will never lose this weight! I will always be fat!"

That's the self-fulfilling prophecy. It's all in your head. And it's all in mine.

*I* get to choose how I look at this.
*I* get to decide whether to frame this as "one pound in two months" or "eight pounds in two weeks."
*I* choose my mindset. And the mindset I choose is success!

I am so thrilled I have lost 8 pounds in two weeks. I feel very proud of myself for sticking to my plan, not giving in, and getting out of that rut. And I am going to let that pride and satisfaction carry me forward to lose even more weight.

Yesterday I ate well. I had 1545 healthy calories. My dinner was crazy though... it was prime rib stroganoff. Oh man, can you say dieting disaster?? My husband had cubed up some prime rib from a roast he bought and asked for stroganoff. I make a fantastic stroganoff if I do say so myself, although I usually use extra lean ground beef. The prime rib was decadent (and calorific!) but I did my best to make the usual reduced fat sauce, served with No Yolks egg noodles. Now let me tell you, I can eat a whole pan of stroganoff. I totally have issues. In the past I HAVE eaten ALL the leftovers in the same night, after dinner. I just can't stop eating the stuff. I knew this. What to do?

Well, what I have been doing is making a big pan of steamed, sliced yellow summer squash and using them as my "noodles" with the sauce over the top. That saves a lot of calories right there. But I knew... I just KNEW I was going to flip out and overeat it. So in addition to the steamed squash, I warmed a can of sliced mushrooms and roasted a pan of broccoli with garlic. At dinner, I heaped my plate with an ungodly amount of squash and mushrooms and a good helping of broccoli, and then gave myself ONE serving of stroganoff over the squash. Oh my, was it good. It was amazing. I savored every bite. And those vegetables totally saved me. By the time I finished my plate I was stuffed (and although in general I try to avoid being stuffed, it was the lesser evil in this case... stuffed with squash vs. stuffed with prime rib stroganoff). I was uncomfortably full but I sat there, eyeing the pan of stroganoff. I *still* wanted to eat it. I left the table and did something else. All night I thought about that stroganoff and wanted to eat the whole pan. I just told myself, "wait until bedtime, and then you can eat the whole pan of stroganoff AND a Boston cream pie... in your dreams! No calories."

And I did, too. I dreamed of stroganoff. Hey, I never said I was normal :)

Today was a good day. My food has been weird because of the sore tooth:

Breakfast: Chai tea with skim milk and agave, Egg Beaters/turkey sausage/spinach/lite cheese on a Double Fiber English muffin with a Clementine. I also got a small nonfat mocha from McDonald's as a treat. I rarely drink coffee and this time it made me WIRED. I think half a small would be better for me.

Lunch: blackberry nonfat yogurt and one hard boiled egg

Snack: mug of homemade chicken stock (from my Magic Chicken Soup recipe) and a wasa crisp flatbread with a wedge of Laughing Cow Light cheese on it.

It is cold and raining... no walking today. I will definitely bike and strength train later. I am low on the veggies, so I think I will make some steamed asparagus tonight for dinner... with maybe egg salad. Yeah, that sounds good. (I looove egg salad...made with light mayo... on top of steamed asparagus. SO good.)

My daughter has been sick for several days but she is improving. My husband is leaving again on Wednesday. Life goes on... and the weight comes off.


Karen In Tennessee said...

Way to go, Lyn! And regardless of last month, you HAVE lost 8 pounds in 2 weeks and THAT is what you should celebrate!!! You had a great strategy with your dinner last night...and I am so glad you could eat all you your dreams. LOL!!!!

I am hoping for my new decade on Sunday...and your success continus to inspire me to help me get there!

Tony said...

"And I did, too. I dreamed of stroganoff. Hey, I never said I was normal :)"

LOL, funniest thing I have heard in a while.

I think anyone who has ever tried to lose weight can relate to those head games you described. You have your high, and then you have your low, and then you have your high again. It's all part of the process.

Stroganoff is damn good. Great job at putting moderation into action.

Carol said...

You could have told your hubby you will not cook what is so tempting to you. Saying "NO" is an option. Anyway, you did well and any loss is a good loss.

JJS said...

Congrats on resisting the stroganoff! I make a healthified version for my family, hubby loves it. I also use the mountain of vegetables tatic to resist the urge to overeat the entree (which is usually more tasty than veggies)

Your blog is a real inspiration to me. I have 50 lbs gone, another 100 to go. But, I will get there!

MackAttack said...

I have to agree, way to go, down is better than up. It's a huge victory to go down, especially after a disappointing gain.

Anonymous said...

Terrific loss! I love the way you decided to look at it in a positive light. I am always doing, "I was just the same weight x months ago!" That is such a defeating mind-set. I need to follow your example, because the other way we are just discounting our success and hard work. Thanks for the reminder!

bbubblyb said...

Way to go Lyn, 6 lbs is WONDERFUL!!!! I'd definitely count that as a huge victory.

Neelith said...

I am so happy for you. What a great mindset! And it is really something I needed to hear since I had my 16pound gain. You give me hope that I can turn this around!!!!!

MizFit said...

Great job on the LOSS Lyn!
And the stroganoff dreams? calorie free.

hope your daughter is better soon. I know thats exhausting on her and on you!


Vickie said...

Interested in your reaction to what Carol said - telling your husband NO - and/or telling your husband that you can't have prime rib in the house. . .

Lucrecia said...

I suspect anyone who struggles with weight issues has those same mental hurdles. Doesn't it feel great when you are able to walk away from something that seems to be literally pulling at you?? Congrats on your great loss too!

wakati said...

You are awesome!

I've been lurking for sometime and seen the struggle. I got divorced last year. I lived with my ex for 8 months with us both knowing that I wanted out. It was excrutiating. I trained myself to only eat when hungry during that time also. That made it even more difficult. I had to find a whole new toolkit.

You are handling all of this very well. You are learning to eat healthy. You totally rock!

Jilli said...

Just remember, there's still almost a whole week left in February! If you continue on the path that you've been on for the past 2 weeks, you'll post a much bigger loss than 1lb for the month! Keep it up - you rock!!!

Dinah Soar said...

Good job lyn! You are so right about the head games. But if we count every pound we regain, then we should be able to count every pound we lose, and re-lose. Losing is losing even if you keep ending up in the same spot.

Heather's House said...

Good job Lyn. You no longer weigh 230. You are in the 20's ... nowhere to go but down.

I truly believe weight loss is a big head game ... the whole part of it. All these things go through you head constantly about what you said and also things like well, I did well so I can cheat or no I did well, I'm not going to cheat. It really is a very difficult journey. I wonder if we ever get over that....

Keep up the good work!

somebodys mother said...

Oh, the head games. I know them well. They are often a bigger battle than staying consistent with exercise. Fortunately, I am also making small gains in my perspective on food. I too am at a place where I am realizing I can have many of my favorite ffods, depending on my approach and mindset. A while back it dawned on me that there are certain foods I eat like I am never going to have them ever again in my so I better eat as much of it as I possibly can just this minute. The fact of the matter is there really isn't any food for which that is true. So, when having one of the foods that triggers this response I have a little talk with myself before eating. "Self, this is a favorite food. This is not the last time you will ever have it. Have some, enjoy it, and then walk away. It will be back, you don't have to eat it all this minute, this day, or even this week. This is one of those little things that lets me enjoy food without it taking charge of my life.

Jesse said...

I play this headgame, too. So easy to give in to self-defeating thoughts! But never forget that you worked for all of those lost pounds, even if the net number for the month isn't where you want it to be. You still did all the work, and that is what counts, not the number. Congratulations!!

Anonymous said...

I agree that it's harder and more important to have control of your mind and emotions than anything else, because that's what will ambush you. I find that by regulating these, it's much easier for me to eat healthy and exercise, which I can't do if I'm freaking out or being super-negative.

I also eat lots of veggies when I eat really fatty food, it takes up space and not only will high fiber make me eat less, it'll make digestion less efficient.

RML said...

I just found your blog and reading through it, very inspiring! Every loss should be celebrated!


antgirl said...

Yaaay for the positive and constructive attitude. Wishes for continued success.

Sherre said...

That stroganoff sounds wonderful -- both the "real" stroganoff and that served over the squash. I have participated in the same head games you described. We are our own worst enemies. But you're doing GREAT. Especially considering the stresses. One step at a time. (And, I'm going to try the dreaming ...) :)

evy said...

Hi Lyn,
Thank you so much for this post.
It spoke to me.
I was so happy to see I lost 60lbs in 2008, then I looked at my charts and saw that from May '08 till now, I have only lost 20lbs.
I kept re-losing the same 5lbs so many times.

Your post made me put it in perspective.
In previous years, I would have been up another 50lbs by now.

Lyn said...

Carol, Vicki~

Oh I only wish I thought to say no to this one. I have really put my foot down about the Costco boxes of chocolate muffins, the cakes and pies, the oreos and ice cream, the chips... and he has listened and stopped buying that stuff. But he says, "You cannot control what I eat." And he is right, so he buys his candy and eats it, or whatever...

In this case, he got the prime rib for cheaper than we could get ground beef. It was a steal. And I make stroganoff with ground beef, so why not prime rib. I Didn't really think I would get as fixated on it as I did. There's more prime rib in the freezer but I am NOT making anymore stroganoff with it!!

Karyn said...

8 pounds in two weeks is AWESOME! And it proves that you are NOT giving in to negative self talk! I'm so proud of you!

I've been craving pasta lately - love the stuff too much. Like you, I'll overeat just because it tastes so good. But, I am planning to use your trick of piling the veggies on (plus I have the advantage of only having to cook just enough). I'll be thinking of you as I eat my pasta and veggies....

Hope the toothache clears up - one way or another!