Tuesday, March 30, 2010

An Introduction

If you've taken a glance at the list of Cincinnati Losers lately, you may have noticed there's another name there now. I was thrilled that I was asked to become a Cincy Loser and it's high time I introduced myself.

My name is Carla Gesell-Streeter and, with my husband Tom Streeter, I write Hoperatives.com, a Cincinnati beer blog devoted to "Believers in Better Beer (In Cincinnati and Beyond)". I also blog at RadioCarla.com and soon will be reviving the newly re-designed Diminishing Returns blog.

Compared to the other Cincy Losers, I'm the tallest (6' 0"), the heaviest (288.8 pounds as of yesterday) and the oldest (48). I've been doing this weight loss thing for a looong time. I realized today that I've taken water aerobics classes in four different states. I've been a member of Weight Watchers in three states plus online. I tried Nutri-System when I was working at a radio station in Illinois. With my husband, I've done medically supervised liquid diet twice (we documented the most recent time at our Diminishing Returns blog. Weight loss surgery is something I won't consider at all.

As the daughter of a dietitian, I grew up eating whole grains and drinking skim milk. But, junk food became my way to rebel. I literally was a closet eater since I hid my Hostess treats and candy bars in my bedroom closet. Thanks to a teenager's metabolism and a large frame, I didn't really see the effect of this bad eating. Thirty years later, it's caught up with me.

As I start off on the weight loss journey again, I have several tools that I'm using. Some are ones I've used in the past, some are new and one is fairly radical. On Friday, I'll share with you the tools I'm using in my "War on Weight" the 2010 edition.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Waisting Away

I would be downright lying if I told you I got skinny.
But if my pants (and the daily look-at-myself-naked-in-the-mirror) are any indication, I am decidedly slimmer.
This phenomenon started revealing itself several weeks ago, and my doctor confirmed it last week. I've lost about 13 pounds since mid January.

Considering I went to San Francisco for a Restaurant Week-based trip a few days after that initial weigh in, I'm guessing I've actually lost about 16 pounds.
Not exactly chump change.
I haven't been on a scale in five days, but I know I've been extremely good since then, and by "extremely good," I mean:
  • Eating breakfast every morning (usually Special K and skim milk)
  • Taking my Metformin every morning (I'm not diabetic, but I do have insulin issues) 
  • Consistently working fruits and veggies into my diet
  • Relying on treats like fat free cocoa instead of other decadent sweets
  • Restricting my alcohol intake during weekdays
These aren't hard and fast rules, but these are probably a good representation of what I'm doing to trim calories/fat out of my diet.

Next, I plan on working more water into my diet and creating a regular walking program. The weather is turning, after all, and I plan on taking advantage of the sunshine.

No one's gonna steal my sunshine, and thanks to this weight loss, I'm walking on it.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Poll: When do you Workout?

I was talking with my girlfriend the other day about working out. We were debating the best time of day to do so. Personally I like working out first thing in the morning, it sets the tone for the day. My friend said she preferred working out at night, because it helped her work off a stressful day. This got me wondering, when do most people work out?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Getting Back on the Horse

So that last two weeks have been pretty pathetic in terms of my weight loss effort.  I share this because I need to. I need to hold myself accountable and I know by telling you you'll keep me honest.

Losing weight and staying "with the program" is hard and while I was off to a great start, like many folks do I hit a road block.

Yesterday I had an epiphany.

This isn't just about weight loss. This is about doing something for me. Putting me first. (Thank you Mendy for that realization). I'm going to start trying a few new tactics - new tasks that I hope will keep me in the right frame of mind so that I can finally start reaching my goals.  I've been reading SparkPeople's book, The Spark, and it's really inspired me and given me some ideas.

1) A minimum of 10 minutes of exercise a day (Thanks Chris!). Who doesn't have 10 minutes they can set aside for themselves???  While my goal is to make it to the gym at least 3x a week, if I can't, there's no excuse.... I own a stationary bike.

2) Attend spin class at least once a week.  Spin is so much fun and such a great workout.  I always feel better after class and the amount of calories you burn in that a short amount of time is incredible!

3) Read more articles on the SparkPeople.com site (and not just for Spark Points, lol).  I find that on the days that the SparkPeople eNewsletter arrives in my inbox, I am much more focused and less likely to "cheat" than on days when I don't have that reminder.  Reading the tips and the success stories of other members really helps remind me why I am doing this.

4) DRINK MORE WATER.  I think that my obsession with drinking coffee (with creamer) is holding me back.  I've started drinking it all day long and I think those calories are putting the kibosh on my efforts.  I am going to try and limit myself to 3 cups of coffee a day, and increase my water intake to 6-8 cups of water a day.

5) Continue to eat healthier.  Along with the help of my friend Phyllis (a nutrition expert) and by using SparkRecipes, we've really started to explore new foods and are starting to change our eating habits.  It's been great to watch our go-to foods evolve into healthier meals.

-----> Shannan