Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Amy: Week Six - Putting the pieces in place


Weight lose is a big puzzle for most of us. So many elements go into your success or failure. And each person’s puzzle is separate and unique from everyone else’s. I’ve learned the hard way that what works for one of my friends or even my spouse won’t work for me necessarily.

It’s tough. First, you gotta find all the pieces. Define your motivation, map out your strategy, learn the hows and whys of your metabolism. Once you have your corners in place, you move on to those tricky middle pieces. Dealing with cravings, making sure you lose in a healthy way, eating the foods your body needs, adding exercise to your daily routine. Then there are always going to be those one or two weird pieces that never seem to fit. You know like facing stress (without a bag of M&Ms in hand), making it through holiday seasons (without a holiday ham attached to your ass), facing the pitfalls that come your way (without jumping into a bowl of hot fudge). If you work at it long enough, the puzzle comes together and you see results.

But what happens when all the pieces come together and the scale didn’t get the memo? There are going to be weeks where despite our best efforts, we just don’t lose. Any number of factors could be blamed, but the bottom line is that you walk away from that scale feeling dejected, like all your hard work and going without was for nothing.

I’ve been there. I’ve had weeks where every box was checked off, I did exactly what I was supposed to do and still didn’t see results. On the odd flip side, I’ve had weeks where I’ve cheated more than once and found success. Who knows what evil lurks in those fat cells of ours?

You know that Mucinex commercial? The one where the germs are little green creatures that take up residence in your nasal cavities? That’s what I picture when I think of my fat. Green little monsters that pro-create way too much. They’ve set up home in my body for years now and they’re tough to evict. On the weeks where the loss is low or non-existent, I can just see those SOB’s, bags packed, clearly unwanted, but holding on for dear life.

I wish it was easier and faster, no doubt. Who doesn’t? But it isn’t and I’ve faced that fact. It’s probably going to be a year before I’ll see the whole fruits of my weight loss efforts and hit goal. A year of sacrifice and choices not easily made. The comfort comes from two places: the success I’ve already seen and the better health I’m already feeling.

So the puzzle is always a work in progress. Sometimes pieces get bumped around and knocked out of place. When this happens you simply have to pick them up and start placing them again.

This week, I had a couple bad days: hard time saying no to seconds and no to cravings. But I tried with each new day to get back to making it work. I'm up 0.4 lb and I began my period yesterday, so I can't complain.

Til next week - keep making the pieces fit!

Wanna a little help to get going? I'm raffling off two three-month Weight Watchers Memberships at my blog. Stop by and enter now through 11:59 pm tomorrow (10/01).

Monday, September 29, 2008

Guest Post ~ It Takes a Village to Lose the Weight

Please join us in welcoming Susan from Mr. and Mrs. Get Fit. On her blog, Susan and her husband Jay chronicle their journey from fat to fit.

Weight loss is an odd thing. It’s very individual in many ways—only you can decide how many calories you take in and how much activity you do to burn them.

But losing weight sometimes feels like a team effort. Actually, weight loss could be compared to an Olympic sport like running or swimming. Sure, an Olympic athlete has to be unbelievably dedicated, hardworking and talented to win. But where would she be without a coach to guide her daily workouts? Without a trainer to help her build the right muscles and eat the best foods? Without family and friends to encourage her when she feels like giving up after an injury or setback?

Successful weight losers usually have at least a few people to support them during their losing period—and beyond. My husband and I started losing weight together at the beginning of 2008, committing to ourselves and each other that we would get fit. This partnership in weight loss formed a strong foundation for our new lifestyle.

But we didn’t stop there. We launched a blog called Mr. and Mrs. Get Fit to reach out to a bigger network of cheerleaders. Based on many previous attempts to get fit, I knew we needed to feel accountable to the world—not just ourselves—in order to stick to our plan.

Our moms read the blog, of course. So did a few of our close friends. Some readers from my other blog, Working Moms Against Guilt, chimed in from time to time. Before we knew it, our little weight loss blog had 50 to 100 people checking in daily to see how we were doing. When we did well, they cheered. When we struggled, they chimed in with encouraging words and helpful tips. Talk about support!

The more I found myself blabbing about our efforts to friends, coworkers, acquaintances, anyone who would listen … the more I noticed how it helped me stay on track. Just knowing that they knew I had a goal kept me going, even when it would have been so easy to say, “Good enough.” Accepting a compliment about how much slimmer I looked made me feel like I owed it to that person to continue—I couldn’t let down my adoring fans! And so we trudged, jogged, occasionally sprinted on, losing nearly 100 pounds of fat between the two of us (with another 100 to go).

Perhaps the most powerful social motivator was (is) those friends and blog readers who have flat out said we inspired them to get healthy. (See that Cincinnati Losers’ blogroll on the left? We’re listed as “Inspirational Losers.”) Whoa. Now it’s not just about us and our fat. We’re role models now. Other people are shedding their excess pounds and bad habits, all the while looking to us as a beacon of the Great Fit Hope. How can we let them down?

We won’t. We can’t. Mr. and Mrs. Get Fit want to make ourselves, each other and our entire support network proud. Even when life makes it hard to get and stay fit, we will always have those coaches, cheerleaders, family and friends to give a nudge and help us get to the Olympics of Losers: to achieve and maintain healthy weight for life.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Laura: When life gives you lemons, make diet lemonade


I don't know how it happened, but I managed to lose a pound this week. I think amazing amounts of stress can actually lead to weight loss. I know I mentioned that the wedding was starting to wear on me and last week, I gained a pound. This week, things took a turn for the laughably stressful.

My dress was finally located on Tuesday, which was an exciting turn for the better. Now we're in the final details stretch of the wedding, and I'm starting to calm down about that, which is good, because life totally blew up on another front. I'm in the process of selling my house in Covington. Jon owns a nice, larger house in Oakley, so we decided to live there and sell mine. Lucky for me, I was under contract with someone after only 6 weeks on the market. Everything was moving smoothly until I found out on Monday that I have a title issue. Basically, there are still some liens on the property originating when the previous owner's ex-husband deeded the house over to her. Sorting through the paperwork and getting this resolved has been a nightmare, and I reached my ultimate stressed out low on Friday afternoon when it was suggested that I get a lawyer to prepare for "worst case scenarios." I actually had to leave work. I was totally distressed. Luckily, I have very understanding bosses. 

Anyway, the closing was supposed to happen on Monday, but that will be postponed "indefinitely" -- Ugh. Hopefully we'll get it worked out soon enough that the buyer doesn't want to back out. 

So basically, I've been totally distracted from the wedding and my goal. I'm feeling good that despite all the insanity, I'm still down 3 pounds from where I started. I wouldn't say I'm making the best eating choices right now, but I'm definitely eating less. This week, I'm going to focus, so at least I'm feeling good for the wedding next Saturday. Lots of fruits, veggies and whole grains this week. And, a bunch of water. 

My goal is to lose two more pounds this week, so I'm looking the best I can in my wedding dress (which is perfect, by the way). 

Monika, Week 5 - Welcome back dear sweater

It’s fall…my most favorite time of the year. The leaves are changing, there’s a slight chill in the air, and oh yes…it’s time to get out all my fall and winter clothes. Sweaters, jackets and turtlenecks oh my! Fall clothes are wonderful. You can get away with not wearing uber-tight things and revealing things. In fact, from a meteorological perspective, you need to layer up to be appropriately attired for the weather. Fall clothes cover you up and keep you warm and are more forgiving and delightfully camouflaging. Fall is when I can breathe a sigh of relief…no more bathing suit anxiety, no more fretting over whether or not my arms look good in a tank top, or wondering if a sundress is too short and shows too much thigh. Nope, my beautiful, amazing fall clothes cover every single problem area. In the past few seasons, the fashion gods have smiled down on us and the swingy A-line shirts that literally make everyone look bad (read: looks like you’re wearing a tent) are very in and everyone’s wearing them. Think you can see a flaw wearing one of those babies? No way.

Almost every single fall I’ve had this moment where I’ll stand in front of a mirror and think about how this year, this season, I’ll be able to diet and exercise from September to April and have a big diva-licious moment in the spring where I reveal a svelte new me. I’ve decided to make a commitment to sincerely trying to do it this season. And, when all of the Cincy Losers succeed with our weight loss goals, I want to see us all wear those darling sun dresses and go to a swanky affair to show off our beautiful selves! No cardigans allowed!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Julie: Week 5, and dreams

I have a reoccurring dream. It's not a nightmare, but it's a little on the disturbing side. The circumstances are always different: I could be backstage, or at dinner, or at my desk, or sitting on my couch, but the outcome is the same.

All of my teeth fall out. Way more teeth than I have in my head either break off or fall out compeltely. It doesn't hurt, but it's bloody and disgusting and so incredibly vivid that when I wake up, I check to make sure I have all of my teeth. I always do.

I definitely think that dreams are the way for the unconscious mind to work things out when it doesn't have anything else to worry about. I guess I'm a little into Jung and Freud (I did a lot of work with them in my program in college) in thinking that symbols in dreams are somewhat universal. Apparently, teeth represent stability. Teeth falling out represent feeling out of control.

I guess I do feel out of control. I haven't been good about my diet, I've been stressed out and haven't been going to the gym. There are a few things going on that have made me feel disconnected and out of control, too. So how do I gain control?

For me, dieting is about control, and that may be unhealthy. When I lost weight two years ago, I was in one of the most unhappy times of my life-- mid grad school, unemployed, in an awful marriage and generally miserable. I couldn't control any of those things, so I controlled my eating. I am trying to sort out if I want to lose weight now because I want to lose weight, or because I need something to control when I can't control other things. I don't want to lapse into disordered eating, exercising or thinking.

In any case, I'm at 172.6. Down from a gain. I guess I'm not as out of control in my eating as I thought.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Michelle: Ups and Downs

It's been a week or two of ups and downs. I gained back one pound that I've lost, now putting me at -7 instead of -8. I've behaved poorly as far as the diet goes, but some good things happened as well. Let's review, and we'll start with the not-so-good:

  • Threw out my back. I had back surgery a few years back and I never really returned to normal. Occasionally I do stupid things that remind me of this.
    Case in point, I worked my butt off at the Bacchanalian wine tasting event last Thursday night. But I should have had a job that required sitting down, but I was embarrassed to admit why I wanted one. Instead, I was standing up, in heels, head down and hunched over, for several hours as I uncorked and bagged over 300 bottles of wine. Sometimes I wouldn't even look up for an hour. It seems I compressed some things in my spine that really shouldn't be compressed. This seems to happen if I stand up for over 30 minutes anyway, but I really pushed it this time. Lessons learned: fight for sitting down job and don't wear really awesome heels. I spent most of the last few days flat on my back or hobbling around like I'm 80. I live in fear of another surgery, so I should really be more careful. Part of my working out is building up the weak muscles around my spine.
  • Took lots of painkillers. Thanks to the aforementioned issue, I succumbed and took a fair amount of Vicodan, among other things, this weekend. My back hurts on a regular basis, but I tend to work through it. It takes a lot of pain for me to break out the Vicodan, as I hate painkillers. The real downside to the painkillers? They make me hungry!

  • Ate too much. I was hungry. Painkillers or not, I was starving. I started out by eating 100-calorie snacks, but after 3 little bags, I'm sort of defeating the point. Diet? What diet? We ate at Otto's in Covington on Friday night. Have you eaten there? The pork I had was beautiful and delicious. (Julie, you would have loved it.) I ate it all. Thank goodness my back hurt too much to wander around Oktoberfest, or who knows how many cream puffs I would have devoured!

  • Lack of working out. I haven't been to the gym in a week and 1/2 now and I've only had 1-1/2 dance classes. I had to stop in the middle of Monday's quickstep class because the pain was just too much. Talk about frustrating. I've got to get myself back to the gym, but now I'm afraid I'll hurt myself again.
  • The week was not a complete loss. Not at all. Despite all the downs, I only gained back one pound. I'm okay with this. Forgive my french, but shit happens. Setbacks happen. One can only accept it and move forward.

  • My jeans fit and fit well. I hate shopping for jeans. I find it almost as painful as shopping for swimsuits. I pulled out my last year's jeans, all size 8s that were too tight by the time I shelved them for summer and discovered, to my absolute joy, that they fit. In fact, some are slightly too big and others fit absolutely perfectly. In particular, my 7 for All Mankind super-pricey designer jeans fit like they were meant just for me. Hooray!

  • My ribbon theory is working. Remember at the beginning I said I'd measured my inches by using ribbons instead of measuring tape? Well, the bust ribbon hasn't changed (of course not), but the waist ribbon is now too big by at least an inch! Yay! This makes me really happy. In fact, I felt thinner and hotter all weekend (even if I was hobbling). Feeling good is a big part of all this, right?

  • Hollywood is catching on. This made my week. First, The CW has come down on several of its new 90210 stars for being TOO thin and is encouraging them to eat. I love that there is now recognition of too thin. Have you seen these girls? They're such sticks I wonder how their legs can hold them up! Then on Dancing with the Stars (my favorite show), Carrie Ann Inaba told Susan Lucci to bulk up and gain some weight. Susan Lucci, the indomitable Erica Kane, looked too frail. If these folks look so small on camera, how tiny are they off? In addition, my favorite new professional dancer on the show, Lacey Schwimmer (from So You Think You Can Dance), has a bust and hips. I love Lacey - she's got a lot of muscle, but she's got a lot of curves. As a ballroom dancer myself, I aspire to Lacey.
So the week wasn't a wash, and I don't feel too bad about the bonus pound. I'm not back up to 100% yet with my back and my movement, but my dance instructor gave me some yoga moves that are helping. Hopefully I can be off the Vicodan by the weekend and back on track with the diet and healthy lifestyle.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Amy: Week Five - Not too shabby


I’m a few hours away from weigh-in and I’m feeling pretty good. Even if the scale doesn’t reflect it, I’ve had a good week: exercised five days out of seven, stayed within my calories/points each day and didn’t use any flex points (for those of you not familiar with Weight Watchers you have an allotment each week of “extra” points or calories to be used as you need to). And bonus, I met all the healthy guidelines each day. The healthy guidelines recommended by WW are pretty standard like most plans:

Water - 6 to 8 svg/day

Fruits and Veggies - 5 svg/day

Dairy - 2 svg/day

Healthy Oils

Multi-Vitamin daily


I’ve slowly been working my way through the list and making these elements part of my daily routine. The one that has hung me up for a long time is the dairy. It’s not that I don’t like milk, I do. It’s not that I don’t like cheese, duh, I do. I’ve seen the “got milk” commercials and I know that milk can be an important part of a healthy diet, maybe even help with weight loss efforts**. So while I didn’t need any convincing on the benefits, someone needed to convince me on using all those points for a glass of milk. I only get 25 points a day and an 8 oz glass of (whole) milk is 4 points! But this week, I found a solution to the problem. I’m done crying over spilled undrunk milk.

Ladies and gentleman, I give you Silk Soy Milk Plus Fiber! This product is calcium-fortified making it a suitable alternative to traditional milk on my plan. It’s delicious and is only 100 calories/0.5g fat/5g fiber - which calculates to ONE point for each 8 oz glass. I can drink a glass in the morning and a glass at night and voila! I have my dairy for the day and I can still actually eat.

There are dozens of other benefits to soy milk - go check them out, it might be just what you’re looking for!

So, now you’re saying to yourself, ‘okay, she’s getting the dairy, yada, yada yogurt, but did it make or break the week?’. Well stay tuned, I’m heading to the scale right now!

I'm baaacccckkk! Miss me? Well, you're missing less of me because I lost 1.8 pounds this week. That walking and soy milk - it does a body good! Til next week...

**Please note that dairy is NOT a magic pill to weight loss; but an important piece of the puzzle that includes reducing caloric intake and increasing movement. - Cincy Loser

Weight Watchers Winners

I am excited to announce the winners of our very first giveaway - two free Weight Watchers Memberships. Drum Roll, Please......

Emily from Mommin It Up & Greisie from Amazing Greis !

Thank you to everyone who entered and to Weight Watchers for offering us this great giveway. We'll be contacting our winners shortly with all the details they'll need to get started.

Stay tuned as we've got more great healthy giveaways coming up!

Shannanb aka MommyBits

Monday, September 22, 2008

Guest Post ~ Deconstructing Cravings

How exciting, our first guest post! Please join us in welcoming Phyllis McCarthy, a Certified Health Counselor fron Northern Kentucky to Cincinnati Losers.

The body is an amazing source of intelligence. It is always there for you, pumping blood, never skipping a heartbeat, digesting whatever food you put in it and maintaining homeostasis. Is this reliable, intelligent bio-computer making a mistake by craving ice cream or a hamburger or chocolate? Are cravings due to lack of will-power or discipline? I’d like to suggest that cravings are not a problem. They are critical pieces of information that tell you what your body needs.

The important thing is to understand why you crave what you crave. Perhaps your diet is too restrictive or devoid of essential nutrients. Perhaps you are living a lifestyle that is too boring or stressful. Your body tries to correct the imbalance by sending you a message: a craving. A craving for something sweet could mean you need more protein, more exercise, more water or more love in your life. The key to stopping the sugar craving is to understand and deliver what your body really needs.

Your body knows best and is always trying to create balance. However, products like refined foods, sugar, caffeine, alcohol and drugs (which have little or no nutritional value) are confusing to the body. They throw the body off-balance and can create serious cravings as your body tries to get what it needs to restore internal harmony. The more your food is whole and healthy, the easier it is for your body to stay in balance and provide you with a happier, healthier life.

No book or theory can tell you what to eat. Only awareness of your body and its needs can tell you. Of all the relationships in our lives, the one with our body is the most essential. It takes communication, love and time to cultivate a relationship with your body. As you learn to decipher and respond to your body’s cravings, you will create a deep and lasting level of health and balance.

The next time you have a craving, treat it as a loving message from your body instead of a weakness. Try these tips to respond to your body:

  • Have a glass of water and wait 10 minutes.
  • Eat a healthier version of what you crave. For example, if you crave sweets, try eating more fruit and sweet or root vegetables.
  • What is out of balance in your life? Is there something you need to express, or is something being repressed? What happened in your life just before you had this craving?
  • When you eat the food you are craving, enjoy it, taste it, savor it; notice its effect. Then you will become more aware and free to decide if you really want it next time.

Phyllis McCarthy is a Certified Health Counselor and loves helping people create happy, healthy lives in a way that is flexible, fun and free of denial and discipline. Visit www.cincyhealthcoach.com to learn more about health counseling, sign up for the Healthy Habits and Happenings newsletter or check for upcoming events including the Sugar Blues tele-class on October 8 and October 20. If you want to gain control of your sugar cravings without willpower or deprivation, check this one out!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Kate: Roadblock

Single girl is my shtick.

Every Cincinnati Loser has her own brand of blogging - some of us are mothers, some of us are vampy fashion mavens, some of us are brides-to-be and some of us are food and wine divas.

I am single. That's my "gig" ~ at least where blogging is concerned.

Most of the time it's great. I go to fun parties and have fun weekend afternoons, and I never have to hire a sitter or consult a man to determine whether his calendar coincides with my designs for decadence.

I sleep in late, I drink cocktails early and I eat whatever I want.

That all poses a problem when you're trying to make a little bit less of yourself in the world.

And that's the rub.

I've talked about this before on my blog, I definitely have a subconscious belief that if I can shed the pounds (or at least a few of them), I will make myself more attractive to a potential suitor.

I'll look good naked - and the men I meet will want to find out just how good.

But after a months-long dry spell (I think we were singing Christmas carols the last time I had sex), I have reached a strange point in my singleton universe ~ I'm ready to throw in the towel.

If my life were a movie, I'd be transitioning from the buxom, blonde main character into the crazy teacher who wears holiday themed sweaters and enjoys a solo home life with her many cats.

Yeah, not so sexy. Right?

And so every time my mother grabs my plump but pretty face, and tries to convince me You would have to beat the boys off with a stick if only you'd just lose some weight, I just want to yell I'm okay with the curve! I'm okay with the size 18! I'm okay with the one piece!

But sometimes I'm really not.

I actually would love to wear a two-piece while tanning along a sparkling, cerulean pool behind one of Vegas' most glamorous casinos. I'd love to wear a dynamite cocktail gown (without a bra) to an elegant black tie affair. I would love to skinny dip in a pool and not be self conscious about the part that comes between wearing clothes and diving in the water.

I am weathering this storm of indecision.

Sometimes it's a season of complacency dotted with determination. Other times it's period of militant commitment laced with brief indulgence ~ and sometimes I think this storm has more to do with my status of Single than it does my health or diet.

Right now I'm thick in the middle of the former - and it kind of sucks.

Oktoberfest (and the preceding days) rolled into my life, complete with goetta balls, fried pickles and the tastiest bier from the Homeland. I am fat and happy.

Or am I?

The scale shows that I have been living life on the lam - and now regret has infiltrated my psyche. For this week, I am taking a "bye" on the weekly weigh in~ even Weight Watchers gives you the option to abstain one time.

I've had my fill of fried food and (solo) reckless abandon.

It's time to get back on the wagon and hit the road headed towards a town called Success - both in weight loss and personal satisfaction.

Monika: Week 4, Getting off on the wrong foot


Talk about setting a tone for the week! While we didn't lose power and have any catastrophic damage from the windstorm of last Sunday, it certainly felt like such an unsettled week because of my constant worrying about friends and family. I give myself kudos for not stress eating...partially from willpower and partially because the Kroger lost power and we missed a chance to get our weekly groceries. Monday rolled around, and with it came the stories of people having damage, no power, no way to iron clothes, do make-up and basically prepare for the week. To me it just felt like there was a sort of frantic, nervous energy and emotions were running higher than normal.

By Thursday it seemed that everyone had calmed down, power was slowly coming back on and people were looking towards the weekend and Oktoberfest. I was out on Thursday evening at Bacchanalian Society on Fountain Square, enjoying a beautiful night. As I walked through the crowd, I ran into a guy that I had the misfortune of meeting a few months prior at an Art Museum event. When I had originally met him, he managed to both insult and offend me (in my opinion) so I was less than enthusiastic to see him. Standing there on the Square, I was surprised to hear him say hello, ask how I was, and be perfectly polite. Then, he followed up with an apology for his comments when we initially met...he admitted that he had been drinking that night at the event, realized that he had behaved like an a**. Since I wasn't expecting him to even remember what he had said, I accepted his apology, shook his hand, and moved along.

Between the windstorm and my encounter with this guy, I got to thinking about the idea of getting off on the wrong foot. I know that in a lot of cases we get off to a bad start with people, jobs, and to bring it full-circle, dieting and weight loss. I think the key is to not let a bad start set the course for your destination, no matter what it is. Keeping a positive attitude is another form of willpower, and probably more influential than we credit. I believe that even though this week wasn't a loss week, I am okay with it...I know that life got crazy, I coped and I came out the other side. This is a new week, and I'm going to get off on the right foot.

Overall, I stayed the same this week. No gain, no loss.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Laura: Two weeks to go and heading backward


It's been a stressful week, and much like Julie, I'm a stress eater. I'm a stress eater deluxe. Shannan totally busted me with a buffalo chicken burrito on Friday -- which was amazingly delicious -- and it helped me forget for a brief moment that my wedding dress is missing! That's right, missing.

And it's not like the alterations people have it -- no, it's two weeks until the wedding and it hasn't even arrived from the dressmaker yet. They keep telling me they will call when it arrives, and they'll check on where it is -- but now that it's more than a week late and I'm getting few answers, I'm starting to get worried. When I get worried, I eat.

I gained a pound this week -- so I have to find some way to deal with the stress of the wedding other than eating burritos and burgers. Ugh.

Oh, and have I mentioned I'm going to have to have this thing altered for sure? How I'm going to do that in two weeks or less is going to be interesting. My waist is two sizes bigger than my bust and hips (not gifted with the curves, this one). And, since my fiance and I are close in height, I'll be wearing flats so I won't be taller -- meaning length must come off.

Somebody, get me a burrito!

Photo Courtesy of Stock.xchng

Friday, September 19, 2008

Julie: Week 4, and a setback

Last week was pretty darn stressful. I had the power outage (my power is finally back as of 7:30 Thursday night). I got stranded twice; once because of my own stupidity and once because of a bad gas gauge on a loaner car. I had a small party on Saturday (after being stranded earlier in the day). Am I a stress eater? Oh, yes I am. My apartment was completely silent, I read a book and ate cookies and didn't feel terribly bad about it.

We all have bad weeks, and I think large amounts of stress can be considered "bad". Amy had a really good point: first, the pound I gained this week might contain muscle from my workouts (possible, but not probable) and even then, I have a good excuse. We all have our stress relievers. What I need to do is find a healthier stress reliever that I can do at home without electricity.

Good thing though? Shopping this week! I bought some clothes that fit-- I may have gone up a jean size, but I feel so much better in clothes that fit me well. Today I'm rocking a purple lace and cotton shirt from Bebe, a black pencil skirt, hose and heels. I should probably post a picture, but I don't know who'd take it at this point. Just goes to show you-- clothes can definitely help make the woman. Buy clothes for the size you're IN, not the size you want to be. You'll feel and look better, sexier, more proportional (or more sophisticated, or whatever you're going for) if your clothes fit-- that goes for too big AND too small.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Michelle: Update (Week 4)

Those of you in Cincinnati know that this has been a crazy week thanks to a freak windstorm last Sunday. The week before that was perhaps my busiest of the year, as we had some sort of dinner event every night.

Sunday morning we took in a movie, where I avoided the movie theatre popcorn, but somehow managed to dive full-throttle into a brunch buffet we found on our way home from the film. Brunch is perhaps my favorite meal, with my favorite food. Even through the power had already started flickering while we were in the restaurant, it was still rather enjoyable. For instance, there were real eggs instead of egg beaters.

Tomorrow is "Cookie Thursday" at my husband's office and I'm about to go spend the afternoon making several dozen chocolate covered cherry cookies. I love to bake, but I tend to put on pounds every time I do it.

The last two weeks have been a lesson in not depriving myself of things, but exercising portion control. Last week I was great about portion control. This week, well, my food choices haven't been that great. With so many grocery stores closed, we ate what was left in the house, which wasn't necessarily the healthiest. I finally made it to Remke's Grocery last night, which had just opened around 3 pm. Their shelves were bare. I've never seen so many people wandering around a grocery store, and we all had fairly empty carts.

My big challenge this week, other than getting back on track with portion control and healthy eating, is working out. (Does picking up branches and cleaning up the yard count?) I have a dance class tonite but I haven't made it to the gym yet. I've had trouble finding the motivation. Honestly, with such perfect weather, I have no excuse not to walk.

Weekly weight loss: 2 lbs
Total weight loss: 8.2 lbs

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Amy: Week Four - Taking it up a notch

It’s amazing how fast this week seemed to go. And what a week.

Like most, I spent time watching all the tragedy down south unfold as a result of Ike. My prayers go out to everyone there as they try to rebuild their lives. I can’t even imagine. In Cincinnati, we got a smidgen of what those folks are going through with an unbelievable wind storm on Sunday. Power continues to be out around Greater Cincinnati as of today. My family was very lucky. We didn’t lose power and with the exception of a few large branches in the backyard, our property did not suffer any major damage.

And surprisingly, neither did my willpower. I made good choices for the most part and controlled my portions. Eating quite well to boot!

After last week, I decided that even though I was losing, I wasn’t getting the full bang for my buck. It was now or never to start incorporating the exercise piece of the equation. “Real” exercise intimidates me. I’m painfully out of shape and have been for years. It’s embarrassing to be the only one panting when walking up steps. At my last meeting, a fellow member recommended starting small - walk for twenty minutes a day. Get my feet wet with exercise and build from there.

Inspired by this simple wisdom (sometimes you just need someone to SAY IT, you know?), I purchased the WW Walking Kit - a walking DVD/CD for beginners. I haven’t broke in to the DVD portion yet, which will be perfect for the treadmill as the weather becomes less manageable, but the CD is perfect with a basic warm up and cool down and three timed workouts so you can fit a walk into whatever schedule you're faced with.

To make the walking more portable (and less geeky using my old school CD player), I borrowed Doug’s ipod and downloaded the workouts. Once clipped, the only other item I needed to bother with was packing my sneakers each morning. Of course now I want another pair of sneakers so I don’t have to bring them back and forth, and these are sweeeeeeeet!

I began walking at lunch last Wednesday and have continued to do so five days this week. It was such a thrill to add those activity points at long last to my journal. And walking at lunch provided two benefits: I wasn’t easily tempted by co-workers heading out to eat and I fit it in my busy schedule.

Before I started, I doubted what kind of real workout you could get from doing something so basic - something we all do everyday anyway (you know to get to the fridge and whatnot). I was so wrong. With the right music setting the tempo, incorporating my arms and maintaining good posture, it was clear fifteen minutes into that first walk that my heart rate was up, sweat was beginning to form and I was moving.

I’ve walked the 30 minute workout now five times. Today is weigh-in, will I see the results? Stay tuned....I’ll be back after lunch to let you know.

I'm back (that was quick, I'm like lightening, eh?). The scale has spoken and I LOST THREE POUNDS! THREE POUNDS! That is a total of 27.8 since I started Weight Watchers. I received my twenty-five pound award at the meeting and I'm on a cloud. Can't wait to walk, so I'm heading out! Til next week...

Hey, don't forget about your chance to do good - for you and the world. Comment here for a chance to win a three-month Weight Watchers Membership. Remember, between now and October 18th, every pound lost by Weight Watchers Members will be turned into the equivalent of a pound of food for people who go hungry each day. LOSE FOR GOOD: Help yourself while helping others.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The awful Truth: Shannan

This week I managed to get back on the horse and stick to my diet.

One thing I did do this week that is important in my dieting was pick up a new scale. I've been using one of those cheap $10 scales for years. You know the kind - the weight varies based on where you place it on the floor (best spot is to the left of the toilet). Well this weekend I picked up a digital scale and right away it confirmed my suspicions. My old scale had been lying to me. Telling me big FAT lies - almost 10 lbs worth!
I had kind of suspected it and had been accounting for it in my weight reports but I hated seeing my suspicions confirmed. It had been fun (and ego boosting) to think I was close to my goal weight.

This week I am going to explore healthy snacks (in particular the ones involving chocolate!). I am hoping to put together a list of things that you can eat that taste good and satisfy those chocolate cravings.

Weight lost this week (no idea how this happened): 2.8 lbs (please note my old scale was lying to me, this is based on what I thought I had lost and what I actually weigh subtracted from what I thought was my starting weight..... Does that make any sense???)
Total Weight Lost: 7.8 lbs

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Laura: The mother of all colds (week 3)

After spending last week working out daily, I spent the first half of this week in bed nursing the worst head/chest cold I've had in about a year. I felt it coming on last Friday, and by Sunday, it was a challenge to drag myself out of bed to do anything, let alone work out. I was pretty much confined to the house when not working through Tuesday, and even as the cold started to die down at the end of the week, my lungs were sore and my schedule was busy.

I guess it's fortunate that the cold wrecked my appetite for a few days, because despite the lack of physical activity, I managed to lose half a pound this week.

I'm definitely starting to feel a lot better, so it's time to get back on the exercise horse. I've only got three weeks left until the wedding, and losing that extra 7.5 pounds is starting to seem impossible. Time to remind myself that it's not about the number, it's about how exercise and eating make me feel.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Despite it all...


I can't quite believe it. I hopped on the scale this morning and found...yes...wait for it...down 1 lb! Considering the weekend I had in Chicago, I was very happy to see the scale moving in the right direction (163). Yes, it's a slow loss, but I refuse to be discouraged by the simple fact that I'm not dropping weight at an uber-rapid pace.

I'm still feeling pretty stubborn about working out. I have my membership at the Blue Ash Rec, and I haven't been to even see the new building, check out the new gym, etc. To be brutally honest, I'm a little intimidated to go. I knew where everything was in the old building, knew how to find the locker room, the different gyms where the classes were. And now? Now I have no idea where anything is. Considering how ill at ease I feel in the gym, I hate not knowing how to get around in the new rec. I know I should just go, get a tour, ask, but I can't bring myself to do it. For whatever reason, the gym is like the last frontier for me...and I'm such a chicken to try to cross. Starting Monday I'll be working out in Blue Ash, so I will literally have NO excuse to not go work out. Anyone go to the Blue Ash Rec who would want to be an early-morning workout buddy? Ideally, I'd love to take kick-boxing in the morning at 6:15...but how awesome would be to have a friend?

Sidebar: Another issue I have with working out in the morning is the whole "getting ready for work in the locker room" thing. Does anyone do this? Pack your clothes, make-up, everything and literally get ready for the day at the gym? This seems so weird to me! If you have any pointers on how to get ready quickly, please comment!

(Used with permission by Everday People Cartoons)

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Julie, Week 3: Work it, baby.

It's obvious: I can only do so much to curtail my social life. I'm the friend you ask about good food, so of course I have to... I don't know, eat it? I'm finding that portion control is my key and five course meals are my downfall-- but not if they're tasting menus and I don't eat it all.

So, coming to the realization that it's fall, and I have a ton of social events starting up, I decided to exercise. Nothing has changed since last week; I still hate it and sort of dread it. However, if I get to the gym BEFORE I go to work, I have no excuse. Terry gets up at 5:45 and I see him out the door by 7. Why go back to bed?

So, this week, I have trudged before dawn to go to the gym. Monday, I went to the Hyde Park Urban Active, which was so packed I gave up-- Monday was my sole "post work" workout because I didn't have anything to do after work. I gave up and went to Bellevue! Bellevue's Urban Active is so nice-- it was crowded, but there were plenty of machines for everyone.

Tuesday, I did my first morning workout. I went back to Bellevue, and it was pretty dead-- I watched The Today Show while I used the elliptical.

Wednesday, I went to Urban Active in Hyde Park. I'm just going to skip Hyde Park and drive up to Mason next time. It's smaller, but it's nicer and the machines aren't all broken. I ended up reading a magazine on a recumbent bike because I couldn't find a working elliptical.

Today, I took a day off-- had some car trouble (silly battery) and wanted to make sure I had time to call AAA. I figure I walked 13 blocks in heels last night, so I got a little extra exercise yesterday.

Other steps I'm taking: If I drink, I limit myself to one glass of wine or one cocktail and then drink water or diet Coke the rest of the night.

I have a wine dinner coming up tomorrow night, and I'll be there with Michelle. I'm going to drink wine, but not the entire glass. I'll eat my food, but not the whole plate. Moderation, moderation.

And I'll be back at the gym in the morning. It actually feels nice getting up so early, and I'm sleeping a lot better.

I lost .5 pounds this week-- despite overindulging. Maybe it's working!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Michelle: A Little Sad (Week 3)

This week I seem to be battling the blues. It's funny, because I've never been busier as I am this week, with an event (or two) every night through Sunday. So, onwards to the depressing post of the week.

I think the blues are tied to several things. Among them, it's the one year anniversary of my father-in-law's death this weekend. He died at age 58 from early onset Alzheimer's.

He also died almost a month before my little sister suddenly passed away. So that's looming on the horizon as well. My dad has been calling with updates on the headstone.
When do you finally get past things like this? Does it get easier?

Finally, I'm organizing a wine tasting for tomorrow night for the scholarship fund in memory of my sister. Usually, I've got a whole committee behind me. This time, however, it's just me organizing everything, trying to get people to attend, sending out press releases, and more. The rest of the committee has no interest in wine. (You'd think they'd have interest in helping promote the event, but that's another gripe for another time.) There are still 8 seats left, folks, if you want to come. Regardless, the whole situation is both stressful and upsetting.

Anyway, I'm feeling rather defeated and like a grey cloud is following me around. I've had a headache for 3 days. My first reaction is to eat. Of course, eating when I'm stressed and/or upset is what got me into this mess in the first place. I remember when being sad would actually cause me to lose weight. It was only last year that I started reaching for food to make me feel better.

Of course, it's sort of a vicious cycle. When I stop myself from grabbing the chocolate bar, I then get depressed that I got myself into this weight issue to begin with. It's all terribly self-defeating.

Knowing that I'm doing this to myself doesn't seem to help. I sort of feel like I'm drowning and that only a string of licorice or a Pixie Stick (or a whole package) will keep me afloat.

Total pounds lost - 7
Pounds this past week - 1, Who knew?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Amy: Week Three - A pox on my house

Call it what you want, I’m calling this week a HUGE SUCCESS - double exclamation point!!

I lost 0.8 lb, for a total of 24.8. Missed that 25 lb mark by inches. I was disappointed at first. I really felt I nailed things this week. I wasn’t as active as I could have been, but my eating stayed steady and controlled. So while I would have preferred 1.8 - I’ll take it.

The reason this week remains a huge success is that the little devil that sits on my shoulder constantly telling me “psss...you’re deserve those M&M’s...we could really use a milk shake...wouldn’t Taco Bell be so good for a midnight snack?” was in rare form since Sunday.

Like most Sundays, the Cribbs Family spent the morning in prayer...at Children’s Hospital. Little Miss Parker had the oddest looking rash which had been gradually growing since Friday. Sunday morning it exploded. Freaked me out. I was convinced we had spiders (deadly poisonous ones of course) or bed bugs (from all that world traveling we do) or a witch had cast some sort of warting spell (if could happen). I should probably mention that I’m not the rational one in times of illness with my daughter. I often have to be talk down from the ledge and I prefer that talking come from a board-certified surgeon whenever possible.

Turns out despite the immunization shot she received, P has chicken pox, atypical chicken pox making her unique, unpredictable and lumpy.

So began our ointment/benadryl/oatmeal bath/stop/rinse/repeat regimen. Add that to the fact Doug ran away from home/had to leave for Indy for work shortly after we received the diagnosis, and you have the perfect storm for this overeater anonymous.

She’s doing quite well - the pox aren’t as full blown (fingers crossed) as they would have been had she not had the shot and the anti-itch options seem to be helping. But man after that third or fourth calamine lotion soaking, the Oreos were calling to me. It was that or drink heavily and I needed to be awake for the next round of gunk on her trunk. Good thing I was too embarrassed to take Parker out in public because we would have spent the day at Aglamesis.

But I stayed strong.

My only real exercise was bench pressing Parker as I checked her for new spots, but I didn’t binge. I made the healthy meals I had planned instead of eating the pound of cheese I really wanted. Luckily, because of my new grocery shopping motto (Don’t have it in the house today, you want have it on your ass tomorrow) there weren’t a lot of things there to tempt me. I did hit the wine from time to time (you gotta give me something) but I didn’t over-indulge and I didn’t mindlessly munch while doing so.

I’m happy - 0.8 is gone - and I proved that I can stay the course even under the most stressing times. So, how did your week go?

No, I have no idea what this picture means.

PS: Don’t forget to sign up to win one of two Weight Watchers Memberships. Click here!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Shannan: A Milestone (week 3)

This weekend something exciting happened. I was able to fit into a pair of pants that I had not been able to wear for nearly two years. It was an amazing!

I am not sure what made me decide to try them on, as I mentioned before, I had not been able to wear them since 2006. For whatever reason I did and they fit.

It's such a small thing but I feel like it's given me that extra boost of encouragement I needed. I mentioned to some of you that I had a horrible diet week last week. Between an anniversary dinner and then dinner out with my girlfriends on Friday I hadn't done much at all to move the needle backwards on the scale.

This week I am feeling a new energy. Just that little taste of success has really made me want to loose this weight more than ever. Who knows. Maybe I'll be able to fit in go one of my "going out"shirts from the good ole days by the time this is over?!?!?!?!

Weight lost this week (no idea how this happened): 1 lb
Total Weight Lost: 5 lbs

Update: Ok. Because Amy asked, here is one of my favorite shirts from back in the day. The picture doesn't do it justice!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Kate: Rollecoaster (Week 2)

I think I'm a little bit more sensitive than the average bloke.

I read subtlety between the lines of conversation with friends, and sometimes come away with disappointment, hurt or distrust.

My family has always been a source of emotional conflict - usually relating to feelings of inadequacy, neglect or rivalry.

Whatever the scenario, I have found a friend to help me cope through the heartbreak. I don't know when it started. Maybe over cocoa and Girl Scout cookies. Maybe over a piece of pie leftover from one of my mother's dinner parties.

Food became a tool to fill the void in my heart. When I was young I had no idea I was really filling the void in my stomach (and fat cells).

These days I am acutely aware of this paradigm.

I know that I reach for the ice cream or cookies or chips or cake or you-name-it when I'm feeling empty. That's why I have eradicated any sort of decadence from my refrigerator, freezer or pantry (save for some semi-sweet chocolate chips that are mostly used for baking but sometimes doled out in limited qualities to appease a sweet fix.)

Instead, I relegate my indulgences to one-of experiences requiring a trip to the ice cream parlor, bakery or grocery.

More likely, I fix my need to feed with delicious, sauteed veggies seasoned by whimsy - sometimes flavored with special curries and spices I picked up in Europe, other times I feel like an apothecary finding the perfect cure for the blues in my traditional spice rack. Other times I turn to small bits of cheese and delicious fruits.

That I use food to comfort my mood is the true problem at hand. I know I need to find other ways to address emotion - whether it be with long walks, hikes, bike rides or moments of book reading.

But until I can fix that Pavlovian relationship, I will have to take comfort in knowing I am at least making wiser choices when fixing my feelings with food.

(broke even this week/1.6 lost total)

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Laura: Rolling and walking along (week 2)

After breaking even last week due to an exciting weekend in Gatlinburg, I decided to get serious and really come up with a strategy I could live with as I try to get wedding dress ready. It's less than a month to go until the big day, and the pressure is certainly on.

One thing I've definitely learned about myself over the years is that my key to success is completely tied to exercise, for a couple reasons. First, I suffer from pretty severe reactive hypoglycemia that's given me problems for years. I actually have a food drawer at work to help me deal with the problem. It's best if I eat every 3 hours or so, and preferably items that are high in fiber and low in refined sugars. I'm also supposed to avoid caffeine, which I've been trying to do lately because it definitely causes my blood sugar to dive and me to snack more than I should. It's hard for me to go under my daily recommended caloric intake of 1750 calories when I'm eating so often. I can do 1500 most days, but 1200 is pretty near impossible. Exercise definitely helps with the blood sugar thing too. I don't know why, but it works.

The other reason exercise is so important to my success is that I generally eat out 3 or 4 times each week. It's completely tied to convenience most of time, but sometimes, as my fiance says, "I just need to feed my tasty."

So, here's the new strategy, and it's working so far, because I've lost 2 pounds this week:
  • I'm going to exercise 5 days a week for at least 30 minutes. Some days it's just getting a long walk in. Sometimes it's riding my bike (my preferred form of exercise as I typically burn about 500-600 calories per hour). And, if all else fails, and the weather is miserable, I'll go to the gym.
  • I'm running most of my errands on foot or by bike. This has been more interesting than expected, as I'm really having to plan out my trips so I don't have to carry too much back or so I don't forget something and have to turn around. I bet I walked 4 miles this week just running errands.
  • I'm going to make smart eating choices -- salad over fries, fruit instead of chips, water instead of soda, etc -- but I'm not counting calories or measuring anything, since it makes me crazy.

So, that's the plan. Here's hoping I can stick to it. I really feel great when I exercise, but sometimes getting the motivation to get started can be tough. I just need to visualize myself putting on the wedding dress and how nice and toned I look and how much energy I have.

Photo Courtesy of Stock.Xchng

Friday, September 5, 2008

A Big FAT Giveaway!

Contest is Closed. We'll announce the winners on Monday!! Thanks to all who entered. We appreciate your support!!

Last week Amy posted on Weight Watcher's Lose for Good campaign that launches this Sunday, September 7th. For six weeks (September 7 - October 18), for every pound lost by its members, WW will donate the equivalent of one pound of food to Share Our Strength up to ONE MILLION DOLLARS.

So why am I posting this information again??? Because the good people at Weight Watchers have given us two complimentary memberships to Weight Watchers Online to giveaway! That's right people. Just leave a comment with the silliest diet you ever tried- perhaps you only ate grapefruit for a month or you lived on carbonated water and h pixie sticks, whatever it was, share it in the comment section and you'll be entered to win.

We'll announce the winners here on Friday, September 19th. Two lucky people will be on their way to being losers, just like us!

Note: You must be a resident of the U.S. to enter. Please include your email address in your comment if it is not attached to your user name.

Monika: Week 2 - Ready, Steady, Go!

This past weekend proved to be not as bad as I thought. We went camping at Mammoth Cave, which included hiking, horseback riding, playing frisbee...tons of physical activity. We sat around a campfire and had drinks and made s'mores. At the end of it all, I'm down a half pound. Now, don't get me wrong, I don't look at a half pound as big success. But, considering all the landmines that the camping trip held, I'm pretty pleased.

This weekend I'm off to Chicago for a bachelorette party. I'm more worried about this trip than the camping trip, mostly because I'm sure we'll be eating often, drinking a lot and partying. My goal is to walk as much as possible, and to dance as much as I can. If I'm going to make this work, I have to somehow incorporate my life into my life...does that make sense?

I know these situations will keep popping up. With Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years mere months away, the best think I can do for myself is come up with a strategy for attack, then implement it now before the real challenges hit. My mantra for myself is ready, steady go. First, I get ready by thinking through where I'm going, what we'll be doing, how I can incorporate activity to offset crappy eating or drinking, and to consider how I can lessen the bad factor of the food choices I make. Once I've got my ready plan, I have to hold steady to the plan, which is the hard part. It's easy for me to get swept up in the excitement of the crowd, and let myself excuse little slip-ups. Then it's Go! Go! Go!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Julie: Week 2, and holding fast


I admit, I didn't have a great weekend. Labor Day weekend, having people over, a few too many appetizers, a couple of drinks I shouldn't have had-- all in all I came out? Even.

Not bad. Not totally disenchanting, but not bad.

Holidays and vacations are my total weak spots, thus no difference this week. I mean, come on-- we all know that I have a love affair with food that surpasses simple sustenance and comfort. I'm into the artistry, the history, the science-- you name it. I read Gourmet and Slashfood like some guys read porn. Thanksgiving has become my favorite holiday. So, taking into consideration my obsession with food, I have to combine exercise and portion control. The portion control is much easier than the exercise.

I really need to start exercising. Aside from walking around downtown, I'm not an exerciser. I never played sports. I danced until I was in my teens, but don't feel like taking dance lessons. I have a gym membership (Urban Active) that I rarely use. I have yoga mats and DVDs at home (have you tried to do yoga with cats? Difficult!). I have lots of excuses and little motivation. Exercise bores me.

I'm the kind of girl that always has a book with her. It's darn hard to read while on an elliptical, and I somehow have the mindset that a recumbent bike is lazy. Appreciate nature while biking around? Not my style. Running? Ew. As much as my friends (and boyfriend) tell me they love it, I just can't get behind it. Wii Fit? I'd have to find a Wii. It goes on and on.

So what the heck can I do besides force myself to go? Once I start doing it, will I really ever enjoy it? I never have time after work-- how freaking early do I have to get up?

What does a girl do when the last thing she wants to do is break a sweat?

(Image from V for Virtuoso through Creative Commons license.)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Michelle: The Secret to Having a Cocktail (Week 2)

Image from Flickr user cayusa via Creative Commons

As I read our tweets and our blog posts, I realize that many of us worried about alcohol consumption as a source of calories. Since I'm a wine blogger, it wouldn't be in my best interest to stop drinking wine. Or spirits. Or beer. Well, maybe beer.

In fact, I've given up beer, but that's about it.

Over the last year or so, I watched my friend Gabrielle drop a dramatic amount of weight. What was so amazing is that she did it on her own - no support group, no Weight Watchers or Jenny Craig, no Nutrisystem. She used plain old will power, self-discipline, and exercise. She looks great, and she's maintaining beautifully. Now, Gabrielle is a pretty big drinker, but she didn't cut alcohol - not even beer - out of her diet. As she became a smaller sized person, I think her tolerance has decreased, but that's about the only difference. I aspire to be Gabby.

Kevin and I visited a winery the other day, where we had a picnic lunch. We packed cold cut sandwiches - cracked pepper turkey on wheat bread with low-fat cheese - and we purchased a bottle of wine. I drank about 2 bottles of water as we powered through that wine. That, my friends, is my secret.

Even at home, when we're drinking wine or spirits, I'm constantly sipping on water. There are a lot of benefits to this. First of all, water is just good for you and useful in losing weight. Next, it keeps you from over-indulging. Whereas you could have been filling up with wine or beer or martinis, instead you're filling up on water.

Order that martini. But before you order the second one, force yourself through a glass of water. Have a bottle of wine with dinner, but after every few sips, have a drink or two of your water. You'll be amazed at how it fills you up and slows down your drinking. I'm amazed when others don't do this, and equally amazed at how many times in my life I should have done this.

In other news, my last workout session with my trainer is next week. At that point, after having weekly sessions with her since May, I'm breaking free and am going to work out on my own for a month before finishing my final two sessions. Once I'm no longer required to go to the gym to meet someone, things are going to get a lot more complicated. The gym, quite honestly, makes me uncomfortable.

Last I checked (late last night), I lost 6 pounds over the last week. Yay! I suspect it was mostly water weight, but who am I to complain?

A final sort of un-related note: Since you now know that you just need water to successfully get through a night on the town, I want to invite you to a charity wine tasting. All the info is here, but 100% of the proceeds benefit a scholarship in my sister's memory. Pre-registration is required. I'd love to see you there!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Amy: Week 2 Every four weeks or so...

Image courtesy of Stock.Xchng It's that wonderful time each month when I'm reminded of my womanhood. Of course weigh-in this week will be somber and I doubt I will hit the twenty-five pound mark as I had hoped. Fingers crossed I'll hit it next Tuesday.

I'm grumpy and bloated and feeling deprived. We all get this way, right? The old me would have wallowed and headed to the freezer for ice cream consumption, but luckily I've stayed strong. It's reminded me once again that emotion is such a piece of this weight loss pie. See, I'm thinking about pie again?? Ugh. So I'm not going to dwell on those things I'm avoiding. Instead I'm going to talk up a most fantastic event beginning next week.

On September 7th, Weight Watchers begins a most amazing campaign: LOSE FOR GOOD. For six weeks (September 7 - October 18), for every pound lost by its members, WW will donate the equivalent of one pound of food to Share Our Strength up to ONE MILLION DOLLARS. Internationally Action Against Hunger is benefitting from the program. So for doing something good for me, I get the added bonus of doing real good in the world.

I did some calculating and assuming I continue to lose about a pound and a half each week for the next five weeks (I have to account for another visit from Mother Nature of course), Weight Watchers will donate the funds to help feed a child for a month! A MONTH! What an incredible motivator - it might be just the push I need to start moving more. I've got the eating less down for the most part, the moving more...

So think thin thoughts for me won't you? By the next time you hear from me, thousands of pounds will have been lost and thousands of dollars will be working in this country and this world to end hunger.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone affected by Gustav this weekend. You can contact the Red Cross to help with relief efforts.
Okay, I'm going back to being grumpy and deprived.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Shannan: Week 2 I can do this

Sorry to post so late in the day but I spent this past weekend down in Burnside, Kentucky boating with some friends.

Going into the trip I was nervous about maintaining my diet. I wasn't sure I'd be able to keep it going. I didn't know if I had the will power to eat the way should, while watching everyone else eat "normally". Surprisingly.......... I did quiet well.

To help keep me on track I packed lots of fresh fruit - grapes, apples, blueberries to snack on, on the boat. I tried my best to resist the pringles and cheezits (it was tough, I did eat one or two.....). For lunch each day I went with a plain turkey or ham sandwich. In the evenings I let myself indulge a little and went with whatever everyone else was eating - just in moderation.

While I know this probably doesn't sound that impressive, I am proud of myself. I keep saying that it is all about the baby steps and I really believe this. Just making little changes (that gradually grow into something bigger) to my routine seems to be the best way for me to lose weight.

Weight Lost: 4 pounds

Kate: Comfortably Numb

Carnie Wilson says she's trying to heal herself from the inside out.

That's the wisdom I gleaned while watching Tyra Banks this afternoon.

I don't normally stoop to this level - watching Tyra, I mean. Talk shows aren't my bag but I do think the former fashion model has done a lot to promote Hollywood's dire need to embrace real women. Remember when she wore that swimsuit on tv - the same one that the paps snapped her in while on the beach? The tabloids made a huge bru-ha-ha about Tyra's thighs and butt, and so she trooped out on the show in the same bathing suit and grabbed her "big fat ass" and essentially dared the world to insult her beauty.


Stick with me folks, there's a point to all of this.

So anyway - Tyra. Carnie Wilson. Talk show. The two ladies are chatting about being healthy and the perils of celebrity, and Carnie says something about how she just needs to be happy being Carnie, not what other people want her to be.

And I was like, Hell yeah!!

We've all talked a little bit about it on this blog - some of us have a much higher potential for being skinny. I have slim to no shot of being skinny - I am built to be buxom or bombshell. I have have big breasts and curvy hips - there's no mistaking that I am a woman! I love wearing things that accentuate my assets and I love celebrating my feminine form. I am comfortable with who I am - but I've gotten to the point where perhaps I am a bit too comfortable.

I remember another time when I was curvy and yet there was less of me. Back in the day, I spent more time in my sneakers than I did on the couch. I ate more vegetables and fruit and less ice cream and cheese. I loved myself and treated my body like it was the only vessel through which I can enjoy life.

I don't really know what happened.

Somewhere between the comfort and the stress (I know, odd combination) I managed to let myself go. I forgot that nobody's going to take care of me but ME.

I was numbed by life.

The holiday weekend was rough. It was a nice break from the busy-ness of life, but it was full of late nights with limitless glasses of wine, indulgent dinners of lobster and drawn butter and brunches of croissant french toast, crepes and egg casserole. I tried to tow the line when I could, but most of the time I was more than happy to reach for another sip of sangria.

I can't beat myself up over my past mistakes, the only thing I can do is try to make wise choices next time - and heal myself from the inside out.

1.6 lost