Restarting my Fitness Journey

I had let myself get really down and I’m finally snapping out of it. I’m on regular meds and sleeping again. I also seem to be drifting, gradually, away from my boyfriend. That’s a whole other entry though. Today I am diving back into a fitness routine. I have reassessed my goals and opened up my journal once more.

I may pause, but I’m not giving up on me.

Recognizing Abuse

I am getting help. I always knew what physical abuse looked like. I like to think that if I were ever affected by it, that I would have enough sense to get away. Mental abuse is different, but no less damaging. I see myself as intelligent, observant, and I have no idea how I have missed it. I have spent over a decade watching myself deteriorate, doubt, and slowly go mad. I have doubted my senses, my memory (and it is impeccable), and my feelings. I have felt frantic, desperate, and completely worthless while trying to figure out what the hell I’m doing wrong. It. Wasn’t. Me. It is called gaslighting. I am so damn relieved that it has a name. I am not alone. I am not crazy. My memory is freaking perfect. I can recite entire conversations verbatim, years after they occur. Part of my natural charm is that I go through what if scenarios, almost constantly. As a result, my memory has always been spectacular because I replay every freakin’ thing over and over studying it.

Check this out:

My sister sent that to me, along with a few other links, and the light turned on. Holy crap! That is my life. He omits. He distracts. He does this push/pull thing with my emotions. I’ve been so convinced that I am crazy. Not even trusting my eyes. He convinces me that I’m guilty when he’s done something wrong. It has been so absurd, but it sounds so reasonable when he speaks.

So this is where I am. I see that I’ve been in a fog. I’m now on a mission for mental and physical health. I’m on my 6th day straight of going to the gym and I’m going to keep going. It really helps me to think clearer and picks up my mood. Way better than brooding and not getting out of my pajamas for days. I need to connect with people. I need my friends. I isolated myself and it has made things so much worse for me. I will move in the right direction now. I will fortify myself and heal. Things will get better from here.

Let’s talk food

I recently signed up for Nerd Fitness Academy. They are wonderfully geeky and full of game and show references that I adore. I had been following their free site for a while and decided it was time to level up. I’m on day 2 and making small changes to my diet and surroundings to set me up for success. One thing they discourage is the all or nothing mentality. It is ok to make mistakes, you just need to pick yourself back up and keep on going.

One change, of course, is to begin cutting out processed junk in my diet. I’m big on whole foods, but I still go for a cereal bar on the run. I prefer salads, but will polish off the instant mashed potatoes if given the chance. For dinner tonight I stuffed a couple of chicken breasts with broccoli and cheese. My daughter wanted au gratin potatoes and I obliged. While I was stirring and simmering I reflected on what I had been reading all day on their site. It inspired me. Just one little change can make this dinner a healthy one instead of one that will leave me on the couch ready for a nap. Those damn potatoes. I mashed up an avocado, tore up some kale (thanks mom), diced some tomatoes (thanks happy gardening neighbor), and poof! I now have a much happier side for my chicken.

The important part of the switch is how good I feel about it. It is motivating. Tomorrow, for breakfast, I’m going to swap out my toast for an apple. I can definitely put peanut butter on that. All of the time off I had really brought me back to square one. I went right back to convenience foods. Now I just need to figure out how to make the healthier ones more convenient.

As I Yo-Yo again… (Operation Motivation)

I’m back… again. I haven’t taken a full 5 months off, but I feel like I might have well have. My scale practically groans when I start to approach. Ok, that isn’t true, but I imagine it in my head in the morning. I’m back for inspiration and motivation. Oh, I need motivation. And, a therapist. Since I’m unwilling to find the last one right now, I’ll stick to helping my body to become healthier and hope my mind follows.

Since back to school shopping was done, I am fully stocked up on notebooks. I have no reason not to be journaling like a madwoman. I have also found a bike riding buddy. I purchased a bike several years ago. I even rode it a couple of times. I have gone for more bike rides in the past two weeks than I have the rest of the years I have owned the thing. I even rode around the block a couple of times today with my daughter. My only complaint is that my butt hurts after. I bought a cushioned seat cover, which helps a little, but my muscles on my bottom need to get used to holding me up on a tiny seat. I will get there before snow falls this Winter.

I am currently not working (I am a seasonal employee), so my days consist of cleaning, school work (Masters Degree), and exercise. Well, that is what it should consist of. Too often, my day is filled with Netflix, couch naps, and wishing I had done something with my day. I miss my weekly goals. I felt like I was getting something done.

I have a handful of sources of motivation right now, some healthy, some not so healthy.

1) My darling daughter. She is always a shining spot of love, motivation, dedication and all that is good. I want her to live in a happy healthy environment. I will be a positive role model in her life.

2) Diet Bet. I joined another Diet Bet and I read our activity board regularly (every time I feel like drowning out reality with donuts). Seeing other women working together, sharing ideas, acknowledging accomplishments, supporting each other in struggles gets my mind back to where I want it to be.

3) I compare myself to others. Here’s my unhealthy one that keeps me writing in my journal because I am driving myself insane. I was in Abu Dhabi for the Summer visiting my boyfriend. He is surrounded by gorgeous women that are scantly clad and just passing through. I’m not going into this further because it’ll set me off on a self loathing tangent and I’m looking for positive motivation right now and not one fueled by frantic desperation.

To wrap this up, here are my goals for the week.

  1. Meet my FitBit step goal each day this week.
  2. Try a new healthy recipe.
  3. Finish my homework by Thursday. (This will reduce so much stress in my weekend. No one deserves to have a stressed out weekend.)
  4. Time my mile on my walk/jog.
  5. Sign up for the NAMI RI 5k for this weekend.

I’m going to start with this and come up with my long term goals later. And I’m off! I’m planning on playing Just Dance before bed 🙂

And my weight this morning was 244 lbs…

Patting myself on the back

After yesterday, I came to the conclusion that I need to ease up on myself. I do accomplish a lot. It sure doesn’t help that I beat myself up all of the time.

So, here’s a little pat on the back. I didn’t sleep well last night. Once the sun started rising, instead of laying in bed brooding further, I got up and went for a walk. I looped all around town until it started raining on me. And just a few minutes ago, I was beginning to rummage the leftover Chinese food in the fridge. I know that I have way better choices around me. However, I stopped when I realized that I was just very thirsty. 20 oz of water or so later and I’m mildly content.

I was going to apologize to my boyfriend for being cranky at him, but changed my mind. I started crying again when I was typing it. Maybe I don’t need to apologize. I just wish he understood. I wish he could understand without me having to explain. I wish I didn’t respond so strongly to all these feelings. Its a never ending flood (much like the basement). I don’t think that he and I are going to make it through this together. I just need to accept that possibility and start to build my own life again. I don’t even remember him not being in my life. We’re on about 13 years. Even when we weren’t together, we’ve been together. He’s the only constant that I’ve had in my adult life.

Ok, I’m going to try and be done with my pity party. I’m hopping firmly onto Team Nicole tomorrow. I know that I can do great things with me, I just need to get out of my way.

Junk food in the Home

When trying to lose weight, it is often suggested to remove junk food from your home to remove temptation. Let’s face it, if we had strength in our willpower, then most of us wouldn’t be trying to lose weight, we’d be succeeding. I will not do a full elimination of junk foods in my house for two reasons…

1.  I’m a mom. Part of my responsibilities as a mother is to teach my child. Yes, you can eliminate all “bad” choices from your child’s options, but if you are always doing that, then how do they learn to make decisions on their own? How do they learn to moderate?

2. If you remove something from someone’s life, or tell them (either in words or by demonstration) that they can’t have something, what do they do? They want it. The child that is not allowed chips finds themselves with their own spending money and they want a snack. If they are unattended, what do you think they will get? You decide to start a diet that removes processed carbs, what do you suddenly crave all the time?

I was raised with the food issues of my parents. It is one of those things that inadvertently gets passed on. Feeling sad? Have some ice cream. Angry? Ice cream. Happy? Let’s celebrate with ice cream. Confused? Nachos. We can’t eat ice cream all the time after all. Did I mention that my mom worked at a creamery? On the other side, my father would rather buy me a new wardrobe than buy food for the house. It creates a horrible cycle of binging. I would stuff myself silly when I could. Then get depressed, because you have to crash sometime. And when depressed, what do we do? That’s right! Have a bowl of ice cream.

I am so very determined to not pass along my food issues to my daughter. I allow her a variety of foods, and yes, junk foods are in the mix. I teach her about nutrition and what our bodies require. When my darling sister let her eat as much candy as she liked on Halloween and her tummy hurt, I let her know why. When she ate almost an entire bag of grapes and got a tummy ache, I let her know why. As a result, at a tender age of 9 she has learned what a portion looks like. She will leave a slice of cake at a birthday party half eaten because she knows it will be too much. She will choose a peach for dessert. If she knows that she wants ice cream after dinner, she’ll skip out on a danish offered to her earlier in the day. She loves her crackers, but she knows that she needs something else with more substance to it to call it a meal.

Cravings are telling us that we’re missing something in our diet. You don’t ever want to remove an entire food group from your plates. We need all of them. We also need to learn how to moderate all of them. We even need fat. I’m not going out and eating a tub of lard, but eating all fat free items isn’t healthy either. A big step in my move to a healthy lifestyle includes preparing more fresh foods. I try more and more often to have my foods not come from a package. I am, hopefully, passing this along to my daughter as well. She loves helping in the kitchen and reading along with a recipe. I’m showing her how to pick out fruits and veggies. Which ones are ripe, which should definitely be purchased organic. Hopefully I’ll pass along some good nuggets of information that she’ll hear in the back of her head just when she needs it.

I Call Them Turkey Cups

As promised, here are my turkey cups. I loop one slice of turkey bacon around a muffin cup. In a bowl I mix veggies (these are kale, zucchini, and tomato), a handful of shredded cheese, and 2 eggs. Mix and spoon into the cups. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes.



All by myself…

I was singing that title as I typed it. My little girl is far away right now, and will be for another week. She is off visiting her father in Abu Dhabi. This leaves me alone. Me. Empty house. My cat yelling at me. I am determined to not spend this week moping. I will not sulk. I have done one thing so far to reinforce this…

My gym bag is packed! That’s right! I’m getting my butt to the gym for the first time this year. I am definitely not 100% after my pneumonia, but I am definitely doing better. I am still on the antibiotic, but I’ve been (finally) breathing a whole lot better. So, today, after church, I am hitting the gym. I don’t know what I’ll be doing yet, but I’ll try and formulate a plan by the time I arrive.

I will also be cooking today. One of the great benefits (that I remember) about living alone is that I can make one meal and eat it all week. I really don’t require a change in my food. I’ll get all my food groups in, but I have no problem eating the same thing every day. It gives me way less room to binge. I also packed all of the junk food for the kids on their flight so that I wouldn’t have any in the house.

To Do List for today:

  1. No pouting!
  2. Move my butt more.
  3. Make Turkey Cups (I’ll post pictures)
  4. (oh, what the hell) Do my homework 🙂

Tracking tracking tracking

In preparation for my up and coming physical, I have decided to be strict with my tracking of my physical activity and food. I have a notebook at the ready and my arm band is charging as I type. I fell off with tracking when, well, I had nothing good to track. I always feel like I have needed to defend my health when I meet a new doctor. I had a doctor forever ago that had the same solution for all of my health issues… I just need to get a little exercise. Unfortunately, this was back when I was running 5 miles a day and weight training. She just never believed me. She also took over a year to diagnose my gall stones. While I kept requesting an ultrasound, she denied it again and again. It took me switching doctors to be fixed. Moral of the story, if your doctor doesn’t believe a thing you say, you just don’t mesh. You really need to be able to work with your doctor if you’re going to be a team in regards to your health.

My goal is to be able to paint as accurate a picture as I can about where I currently am. I know that I have the basic theory on how to eat healthy and lose weight, but there is also a chance that I am missing something that a professional could pinpoint for me.

I have to say, I’m feeling a lot better today. I’m still trying to pick up my pace, however. I even played Just Dance 4 tonight, not for long, but I played. I’m within a thousand steps of my daily goal as of now. I’m definitely not as tuckered out as I would have been last week. I’m not even napping. I had to shovel (again) and I’m still not taking a nap. My path to my car is almost up to my hips with snow on the sides. We’re really paying for our mild Winter last year.

That’s it for now. Moving more. Eating better. Drink buckets of water.


Yet more progress

Walking more, cleaning more, eating more (oops), and planning more. Part of my resolutions this year was to take even better care of me. This will include finding a new primary care doctor and actually going through all of the screening tests that are recommended. While my blood pressure has always been fantastic, I have no idea where my cholesterol or blood sugar is. I would like to find out so that I am able to correct any issues before it is too late.

So, with my new health insurance, that comes with my new job, also comes a nifty web site where I can be coached and taught all about improving my health and well being. I took my beginning health assessment and learned that I am too short for my weight and that I worry way more than is healthy. I already knew this, but now I can learn more and put these healthy tips that they throw at you into play in my life. This is where my thought for a new primary care doctor came in. My current one is way to far away now that I have moved. It requires three highways and, well, I just don’t like to drive. So, I did some research and found a new one that happens to be taking new patients, and lo and behold, she is only 2.1 miles from my house. If I felt ambitious, and planned ahead, I could walk there. Perhaps when I can see sidewalks, around June when all this snow has melted. I will call on Monday and make an appointment.

I was grumpy as hell yesterday (freakin’ Valentine’s Day). My boyfriend, once again, had me as an afterthought. I, in turn, did the only thing I could see as reasonable at the time. Cried myself to sleep. I obviously need to work more on my positive thinking because I, very completely, tore myself to shreds. He knows nothing about this and thinks that everything is fine. I’m fine. Everyone is happy. Why don’t I tell him how very disappointed I was? Because I (am a coward) don’t want to hurt his feelings. How could he not know that I was completely crushed? Does he not remember last year? He said he was sorry he didn’t think about doing anything for me. Just once, I wish I was a priority. I don’t want to be an afterthought. I want to be a plan. Here I go again with the stupid tears. My value does not depend on others. *sigh* I just wish he cared. I wish I mattered to him. I wish I was worth just a little bit of effort. So I ate three cupcakes. They weren’t worth the calories and I’m beating myself up about that too. I’ve cleaned all day because I need to feel some tiny bit of control in my life. I need to tackle this somehow. It just isn’t good for my mental health. I don’t want to tell him though. I feel silly. Or I’ll pack my feelings down and ignore it as best I can.

Tomorrow is another day of me increasing my activity level. I’m going to have to start off with shoveling though, then I’m actually going to try exercising. I’m shooting for stretching and teeny tiny hand weights. I’ll keep going with these baby steps until I’m back to 100% I’m going to get there!

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