Polar Bear

Polar Bear
My Boy

Monday, February 28, 2011

Resolving Issues

Hi everyone, I'm back but not sure for how long...

I am going to the doctor tomorrow hoping to get my health issue resolved.  I can't even begin to explain what is wrong, but I'll try.

After I eat a larger meal, no matter what it is-high protein, high fiber, etc-I get a kind of dull ache mid-ish right-ish abdomen.

At first it felt like gas, and would pass overnight.  Recently, it has not gone away.  In fact it gets worse each day, and moreso after meals.  However, I must stress that it is not pain, but feels more like a pulled muscle type of feeling, and it does not bother me in all positions.

Since I don't have a gallbladder, you can imagine my googling results to self-diagnose myself has run the gamut from appendicitis, to pancreatitis, to ectopic pregnancy, to ovarian cysts, to kidney infection, to cirrhosis, to diverticulitis, to ulcers, to hernia.  ETCETERA.  Seriously, googling is not always a good thing.

So tomorrow I will find out more-I am hell bent and determined to do so...

Weight loss is still going well, for now, I hit the 160's this weekend.  BUT I can just see some horrible health issue surfacing tomorrow requiring surgery or treatment and not allowing me to continue weight loss.  

Yes, this is how my mind thinks...I may have cancer or a failing pancreas, but SHIT...I may have to stop losing weight!!!  Yes, this is VERY sick, I know.  One of my many issues...put it on my list.  

I'll jump off that bridge when I get to it I guess...cross your fingers for me, please.

Wishing you all well, hope to catch up with you all soon.  Please let me know if you have posted something you think I might be able to help you out with or really want me to read from the past week as it may take me forever to catch up...

Stay healthy folks!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Worn the F- Out

Quick note to say 'Hi' to everyone, and sorry I haven't visited any blogs lately.  No good excuse, just been a bad bloggy friend.

Tired, worn out, burnt out, etc...still on the wagon, but infinitely less enthused about everything.  Feeling very neutral about things that used to trip my trigger.  Feeling down about stuff I used to be able to tolerate.

Don't know what else to say about that.

Will be MIA for a few more days-hope you are all well-wish you the best!

Friday, February 18, 2011

When weight is all you can control

Death, taxes, drunk drivers, February snow in Texas, alien abductions...

And the answer, Alex, is "What are things we cannot control"?

I realized today that losing weight is the only thing I can really effect.  Destiny?  Not so much.

I'm starting to understand more and more why those with undereating disorders starve themselves.  If their lives are anything like mine, they take that little nugget of control and run with it.

I realized today that it doesn't matter how much I prepare, read articles, take classes, offer solid experimental suggestions-my opinion will never be taken seriously by my boss.

Many of you are probably saying, "Yeah join the club."  But in my education, the whole purpose of getting a science PhD is to LEARN how to THINK analytically and use known info to answer new questions-in other words-Independent Thinking.

I have told you that my boss is a micromanager, but today takes the fucking cake.  See I have my own project, one that granted HE chose for me based on what he wanted to pursue, but I have tried to make it my own and take ownership since.  Because at some point I need to be able to pose the future questions and solutions based on the results I see day to day-by myself.

But he has a plan...many in my lab think it doesn't matter what the results say because the boss sees everything through rose colored glasses and will keep repeating an experiment until he sees the results he desires.

Until today I wasn't sure if that was true.  Today I offered a really good suggestion, to replace our current mouse model with a MUCH better, cleaner model that I found in the literature.  And he shot it down.

The fact that my work really doesn't matter, that my name will be put on a paper with less than clean results, and that I will never be allowed to develop as an independent scientific thinker makes me want to fucking drop out.  And it makes me sick to my stomach.

No joke.

And it makes me want to exercise until I drop dead-because I can CONTROL that.  That is the only area where my hard work and initiative pays off it seems.

Sorry for the negative post, but I'm just so frigging pissed right now I can think straight.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Ulterior Motive

I admit, when I see celebrities proclaim in a verbose and dramatic manner that they are just so sad because it is so HARD for them to tell who likes them for themselves and not their looks or money, I want to freaking puke...

Then when I see gorgeous, perfectly shaped women prancing around in 6 inch heels claiming that no one takes them (and their unnatural cleavage) seriously and takes the time to get to know the real them inside,  I want to puke on THEM.

But before I feel the bile rise in my throat, maybe I should think about this idea more...

See lately it seems that people talk to me more.  Not men or women specifically, all types of people.  To be objective, this could be occurring because of the way I carry myself, which is different if merely for the fact that I take more care in how I dress.  
This could also be happening because I am more chatty, and maybe less bitchy and reclusive looking-which my lovely mother never failed to tell me.

However, part of me has to think about what my friend Ann stated in her answers in a few posts back, when I made her answer questions pertaining to 'normal' thoughts about how she thinks of obese people.  While she said she wonders why obese people eat fast food crap, she said she doesn't think badly of obese people.  

HOWEVER, we all know that some people out there have a variety of opinions about fat people-that we are lazy, unhygienic, etc-and we all heard about that lovely writer who said she is grossed out just seeing fat people walk across a room.

Frankly, the fact upsets me that people could now like me while they didn't before because maybe my rolls made them feel like they were going to puke.  Or that maybe now that my face is my own again, and I have one chin, that people really are nicer to people they find more attractive.

While I am happy, for whatever reason, that it seems I have more friends and people want to be around me now, the former bitchy, protective me really doesn't want their respect and niceties if thinness is the determining factor in them offering their friendship...does that make sense?

Anyone else question newfound, unlikely friendships?  Could Paris really know what she is talking about?!?!? ;-)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

High Heels and Low Weigh Ins

It is no mystery to those who have been reading for a while-but I love shopping.  Prior to getting less fat (as opposed to 'thin' yet), I started buying shoes-lots of shoes.

I admittedly exchanged one addiction (stuffing thy face), with another (stuffing my feet into new shoes).

Ok, so maybe I have always liked shoes.  Living in a high heel culture, I yearn for high heels, and on special occasions, I have even tried them-at weddings, parties, etc.  But the heels rarely last an hour...

Truth is-beauty hurts like hell, and those high heels are just one ring of said hell...

But I still buy heels, because they are so pretty and I always thought maybe I could wear them some day...a couple weeks ago I found these lovely boots on eBay, and just had to have them...

They have almost 3 inch heels, but I decided to wear them last week-to work!  Where I walk all day!!!  On my way in I thought I must be freaking crazy from carb withdrawl to wear these shoes to work.

But at the end of the day, I was still wearing them AND my feet felt fine.
Then I realized that it wasn't my feet that couldn't wear heels, it was my fat ass.  In other words, being obese kept me from one more 'normal' activity.

Sure, I know many bigger girls have no problem with heels, but I always had.  And when I was thin and younger, I didn't wear heels-boy I wish I had!
So I guess I had a mini NSV on Friday, which turns out to be major for me since I have so many pairs of unloved high heels that I can now wear!!!  I still have to work on my high heeled swagger though. ;-)

On another note, I weighed in yesterday.  I had wanted to lose at least 5 pounds since I hadn't weighed in the week before (Medifast was closed due to our horrible weather).  However, I lost four, down to 173.
First, I was really wanting at least 5 pounds gone, but I guess all that random snacking while being holed up at home in the bad weather crushed my 3 pound loss per week average that I have had lately.  Not that I expect 3 pounds per week at this late stage in my weight loss, BUT when I get on a roll I really try to ride the momentum, while I still have it that is...

However, and second, I am so happy that I am actually in the 170's.  The previous weigh in felt like a fluke somehow, not that I didn't work hard for the 177, but I honestly thought I would never be able to break 180, since I was never able to before.

So I realize this was not an exciting post, but that's all I got for now.  Hope your weekend is going well!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Snot-my new best friend

You know when you are walking through the mall, and you reach the foodcourt area?  I have gotten to where I avoid going anywhere NEAR it-not just for the lines of mean hungry people jutting out into the walkway...

Walking past the foodcourt always makes me STARVING, no matter the time of day.  You know the feeling-the waft of pizza, chinese, and burgers mingling should make us all want to puke, but strangely to me my food addict brain can tease out each food scent and I suddenly want ALL THREE.

Everyone knows foods make us hungry, but why?  Studies have shown that seeing food images trigger hunger, but what about just a waft of fried chicken, baked cookies, french fries?

A study in a 2010 issue of Obesity (18:8, p.1566-1571) conducted at Indiana University School of Medicine by Veronique Bragulat et al. tested the cerebral effects of food ODORS.

Two groups of people, normal weight and obese, were fasted for 24 hours.  They were given four food choices and were told to rank them in preference of eating.  Then they were exposed to these four food-related odors (two sweet and two fatty food scents), and four non-food odors such as chemicals and fir trees.  This all occurred while they were strapped to a brain scanner.

The odors of the most preferred food choice increased brain activation in the reward-related areas of the brain over the non-food choices.  However, what I found interesting and had not heard previously was that the brain areas activated are similar to those activated when cues of addictive substances, such as alcohol, were given.  

In fact, in lean individuals the area of the brain most affected by these food odors is the area responsible for body homeostasis (happy medium), whereas in obese individuals the area most affected controls long-term memory.  

Does that mean that we as obese people form memories around food, so strong that they are causing responses comparative to drug usage, and that the mere odors of such foods can elicit memories and create EMOTIONS?  Just like the scent of your mothers' perfume makes you think fondly of her reading to you as a child...

Many of us talk about being food addicts, and I know I am one.  So then logically speaking being obese means we have actual brain response that makes it harder to break the bonds between foods and memories.  

But if the stimulated area of the brain is the same for drugs AND food cues, then wouldn't it also be logical to think that we would go into similar physiological withdrawal as powerful as DTs when dieting as drug/alcohol addicts who go through rehab?  

Anyone else ready to sign up for a Haldol drip?  Someone on their blog the other day stated indignation that obesity is not considered a coverable medical expense like other addictions, but I think if the results continue stacking up there will be no way the medical and insurance industries can deny the chemical dependence induced by food any longer. 

Until then, I guess we all have our workouts and salads at least! ;-)

Monday, February 7, 2011

I don't know, it's a mystery...

I love Geoffrey Rush-in spite of the House of Haunted Hill disaster I spoke about this weekend.

In Shakespeare in Love, a fantastic movie, his character continues to honestly answer how he/they/everyone will get out of the predicament in which they find themselves at the time with "I don't know, it's a mystery..."

Some of my followers have commented on my resolve and motivation on this diet, as if I harbor a fire-breathing talent, or the Midas touch.  Ok, so I exaggerate, but I sometimes feel like some may think I have inhuman strength...

Well that sure as hell ain't true.  When I started, I had all the best reasons and intentions lined up as to why I wouldn't, couldn't fail, and it sure sounded good...but when it came down to it, how I was going to EXECUTE it all, day after day, for freaking MONTHS, was a mystery of mythical proportions.

Doing something that I had tried and failed two times prior-and again we are talking failures of mythical proportions-put the fear of God into me.  Sure I could tell myself that failure was not an option, and I had the ammo with my motivational memories, but how would my body respond?  Hell, would it respond at all?

As an athlete, a good one, in college I had conditioned my body to almost invisible boundaries.  I was then taught to listen to it, for pain, but otherwise let it respond to what was second nature-forehands, backhands, etc.  When you get good enough at something, it really is just going through the motions.  No step, one, two, three, turn, swing-involved.  Just forehand-backhand-move your ass.

I taught my mind to stay steady and emotionless-the best mind was a silent one...  The best athletes become Ice Men, like Roger Federer, who can stay at an even mental keel and let their body lead.  Of course, I had a temper which I was unable to control at times on the court, one of the thousands of differences between me and Roger.

But when I started this diet, I had no idea if my body could keep up since obviously I was not conditioned to diet very well at all.  And I had never let my mind rule my body's physiological responses, and when the mind did participate, the results were 'slightly' less than optimal.  Um, ok, 'significantly'.  I regained more than 50+ pounds lost-twice.

This was where my memories helped.

Polar, my healthy beautiful curious boy, went from doing anything he wanted, regardless of his deafness and partial blindness...
To doing what he could-and on his last day, no standing, lying in his own filth-he could barely lift his head...
This is 'can't', folks.

My Uncle, feeling his heart beat upwards of 250-300 beats per minute then stop, couldn't stop the failure.  Years of good healthy living and giving a shit gave him a "can't".

I recently found out about the off-duty nurse who, when everyone else including the gym's employees, stood around like statues and watched my Uncle dying on the sit up mat, tried with everything she had to give him CPR.  Again, she tried, but got a "can't".

So I'm on my carpet about 2 hours ago, determined to get my straight arm plank record of 4 minutes.  Me and Miley were rocking it out to keep my mind in the background-away from the awareness off my screaming abs and lower back that felt like it was going to give out.  Those of you with bad backs KNOW that feeling...

At the 3 minute and 30 second mark, with the back getting weaker and weaker, the brain poked through Miley and said, "I can't".

I didn't trust my body, having felt the agony of being laid up on the couch for a week with stabbing, immobilizing back pain before.

Right then I slipped into some Twisted Sister mindset, and remembered one of my favorite song lyrics..."If that's your best, your best won't do."

And the "can't" slipped away...I was not paralyzed like Polar, feeling my heart fail like my Uncle, feeling no pulse like the nurse...I didn't trust my body, but I trusted my mind to lead my fear for once.

It was time I let my brain be more powerful than my body.  I said, "Screw this self-propagating bullshit, if anyone whose life ended with a "can't" saw me now, they'd kick my ass."

Suddenly there was no option.  My mind pushed the boundary of my body, and I hit 4 minutes and 22 seconds.  Then I stopped.  Voluntarily.  Without my back going out.

Today Ellen over at Fat Girl Wearing Thin talked about what can your body do now that it couldn't do a month ago?

So I ask you-when was the last time you let your mind lead-let your brain be strong and push your body-found your physiological limit?  

I'm not talking about sucking wind or feeling the burn of aching, tight legs.  Did you pass out?  Did you fall?  Did your heart stop?  Did your back go out?  Did you tear something?  Did you break a bone?  Chances are the last time you stopped, it wasn't due to reaching one of these limits.

When I was in high school I was the tennis captain, and I hated running, heck it made me out of breath!!!  So what did I do?  What any *awesome* captain would do-I faked hyperventilating to get out of running.

I've got news for you, now that I know what my strong mind can do, there will be no faking it.  And I guarantee your body is in better shape than you think, too...so my challenge to you is to try an extra minute...an extra 5 minutes...an extra half mile...an extra set...don't eat the cookie/big mac/pizza/etc.

Push your "can't", because it isn't a mystery-the brain controls heartbeat, breathing, movement, digestion, appetite-almost everything-it's a packmule-it CAN handle it...I plan to use my beastly brain, with my motivations and memories along for the ride, to push out this goal.  There will be no sabotage, doubt, regrets, time wasted.  Move past your 'can't', it's not set in stone.

You WILL surprise yourself. 

Got no complaints, no regrets, I've got no grand design...
I'll ride the horse that got me here 'till I cross that finish line.
-Robert Earl Keen

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Glass half full about the week-PACK RULES!!!

I really should know better not to open my work email on the weekend.  Everyone in lab tells me they stopped doing it years ago, I think I am the only one who continues to do so...this results in my boss knowing that I am accessible on the weekend.

You all know what an *awesome* hands-off kinda guy he is (read: suffocating micromanager), so of course I get his email today.  His 'suggestion' email...  Hmm, should I try saying, 'um, thanks boss, but I think I'll stick with my own plan, but thanks for the 'suggestion'!  That kind of passive aggressive BS is nauseating.

But to stick with my 'glass half full' subject line-I really do like my boss, as a person that is...He is very understanding when it comes to dealing with family stuff or sickness, and I'm sure he is a blast to be around outside of work...

Ok, I may have fibbed a bit on that last one...I KNEW I was reaching too much. ;-)

In spite of his 'suggestions', I was trying to not get bummed out before the week even started, so I decided to make a list of things I am looking forward to this week...Don't worry, this will be short. HAHA

1.  100% chance of snow on Wednesday...Really 100%?  I don't think anything is 100% in life, but hey I'm trying to be optimistic, so...

2.  We might buy a house this week-we are waiting to hear from the bank about our counteroffer.  If we get it you are all invited to a ginormous pool party this summer!  Ok, maybe not all of you. ;-)

3.  Um...I have some nice packages of small clothes expected from eBay.  I find I am gravitating towards fitted tops these days since my rollos are gone-os.

4.  Big weigh in this week-I'm expecting at least 5 pounds off from the last weigh-in on Saturday the 26th...I don't bust my butt and eat like a damn rabbit for nothing, people!

5.  All the SuperBowl stuff will be done and the fans will be gone, and our weather can get back to lovely again-except for Wednesday of course. *wink wink*

6.  The chili baby in my stomach will proceed to my intestine already...should...have...resisted...the...diet soda.  Feel like a seagull on pop rocks...  Or a coke can with bread...Or something like that.

7.  Going to casino with Mom and Grandma next Sunday, then V-day awesomeness with hubs...lots of awesomeness...multiple times...ok that's all you get there...

8.  New TV!!!  Heavy-Monday, Biggest Loser-Tuesday, Toddlers and Tiaras-Wednesday, Scared Straight-Thursday

9.  New grad school recruits come in, which is nice because it breaks up all the time that I serve as the most intimidated and terrified person in the room...

10.  Straight arm plank record-this week it is MINE, unless someone broke the 4 minutes already...

11.  THE PACK ARE THE CHAMPIONS!!!  What a great start to the week!  The Lombardi Trophy goes back to Green Bay!!!

Random Smattering

1.  Big Ups Medifast-style to Margene and her wondy hubby Brent over at Believing it's Possible is Half the Battle-one year ago they started this journey, today they are 250 pounds smaller collectively.  Check out the evidence!  Margene has been following me from the beginning, and has been a great Medi-supporter in spite of my cursing and occasional vulgarity. ;-)  I wish her and Brent much continued success and happiness!

2.  House on Haunted Hill is one whacked out movie.  I was worried about trying to watch it because I have a bad imagination at night after watching scary movies, but seriously this is borderline hysterical.  And I had such high hopes, it's a good premise.  Maybe the book was better?  Paranormal Activity is still the last scary movie I have seen, even though I watched it in slivers between my fingers.

3.  I'm not a big proponent of the BMI, since there are so many variables not considered in the calculation, but alas-we all live and die by the numbers, right?  So I checked out a few charts today.  When I could finally FIND one that had weights listed on it beyond 250 pounds, I did the comparison...I started at the extreme morbid obesity borderline, and am currently less than 10 pounds from being 'normal'.  Ok, maybe not normal, but at a 'healthy' BMI.

4.  I have a lot of family in Pennsylvania, and of course they are Eagles fans.  I really WANT to like the Eagles, and I suppose I do, as I really don't have an NFL team that I follow completely.  Meaning I like parts of many teams, a quarterback here, a defense there, coaching scheme over yonder...  So anyway, I like the Eagles, I just can't work it up for Michael Vick.  I didn't really like him after the dog fighting thing, but only recently did I really read what HE himself physically did to his dogs.  It is sickening, now I can't look at him.  But I know he isn't the whole team...

5.  Why when I bake CC cookies for hubby can I never get the cookies off the pan without scrunching them up?  Sure hubs doesn't care, but I don't get it...  Is it because I use butter substitute instead of butter?  I spray the pan with Butter Pam, too.  Is the problem because he likes the cookies on the lighter baked side so they are still mushy?  I keep the batter in the fridge so it stays cold.  Ok, I give up-advice?

6.  Snow is a total pain and a mind-f*cker, but dude-melting snow is so NOT attractive.  Who knew there was so much mud in my yard???

7.  Since snow shuts down the town here in Dallas, my Medifast center was closed yesterday.  My counselor, Lynn, a very nice stylish older lady, actually called me at home from her home and apologized for the inconvenience.  What a sweetheart-not that she had anything to do with the weather and I would hope she would drive in it either!  The result was that I could not weigh in yesterday, and I stopped stepping on my built-in scale from the 1950's months ago, at all of your suggestion of course.  Not weighing in for two weeks makes me super anxious.  I like to see the numbers each week-it keeps me straight I think.

8.  Has anyone had their teeth professionally whitened? If so, or if you have any knowledge about the different types-what is the best process to do so out there right now?

9.  Not looking forward to the Precor beast today, but have to burn before I bowl up with some modified chili later.

10.  Arranged marriages-anybody in one?  What is the success rate of arranged marriages I wonder-not just those staying married, but happily married?  Something makes me think that it is pretty high.  I love my hubby, but if I had listened to my parents about all my boyfriends, I would have weeded through them all to get to Mr. Right a decade ago.

11.  Topher Grace is a great young underestimated actor I think.

12.  My favorite romance movie, in fact movie of all time, is Love Actually.  First time I saw it I was perplexed and confused with all the characters, second time I was intrigued, third time I was entertained, fourth and on I have been hooked.  Portrays all the kinds of love you could think of-forbidden, awkward, unbelievable, lost, reborn, etc...

13.  Squirrels eat dog poop.  I really should have scooped that this morning, so I didn't have to see the consumption of such out of my large kitchen window.  On a high note, I'm not hungry for lunch anymore.

14.  Does the HCG diet work because the hormone really tricks the body into burning more while thinking it's pregnant, or because of the 500 cal a day diet patients are supposed to follow..or both?  I'm curious, not for me because I like my plan, just natural curiosity...

15.  I love Aquaphor hand lotion because for me it really seals in moisture and de-wrinkles my hands, but anyone have an idea to put it on the back of my hands and not get my palms greasy?  Just a little pet peeve...

16.  I'm not a big Taylor Swift fan, but gotta give props to her songwriting skills, it's really impressive to express that depth at such a young age...anyone know if Back to December is really about Taylor Lautner?  If so, that is one helluva apology!

Happy Sunday to you all...

Saturday, February 5, 2011

How normal are you?

Everyone talks about hoping to be 'normal' with food, what they eat, how they hope their thoughts about food would be...What they imagine a 'normal' relationship with food to be like...

This got me thinking-what exactly IS normal? So I asked my BF, Ann, if she would purge her soul and answer a BUNCH of my nosy questions. A bit about Ann without prying too much into her privacy...

She is one of two children, her parents are still married, she is a science nerd like me, she is single, she is an optimistic person, strong in her values, pretty, very mature for her age, very motivated/driven, and generous. Before this sounds too much like a personal add, I will paste below her answers, and allow you to draw your own conclusions as to 'normal'...

1. Age: 24

2. Weight: 120-125 fluctuates

3. Height: 5’7.5” yes I added the .5 haha

4. years at current weight: 7 years?

5. ever been overweight: no

6. typical wake up time: 7:30-8

7. typical breakfast and time: been bad and skipping it. If I do eat something its usually a bar.

8. typical lunch and time: leftovers from dinner, due to being overworked either have to skip or eat late ~1-2pm

9. typical dinner and time: around 7, later than I like but have to cook once I get home

10. what liquids-approximate amount daily: Coffee in morning and then water and tea throughout day

11. typical work schedule: 5-7 days a week, and the hours vary a lot.

12. all typical activity (walking at work, around lake etc)-how often, duration, times per week: Walk a lot during work… back and forth between the ends of the lab, walk to north campus, try to walk around the apartments several times a week. Also try to take a 2-3hr walk once a week around the lake if I have the time

13. what do you do when you feel like you have gained a few pounds: Don’t eat as much late at night

14. how often a day do you think about food: Not much at work, more so when I am home

15. how often do you snack: Depends on the day, more on the weekend

16. snack type: fruit, crackers, chocolate, yogurt, cheese

17. ideal vacation: hiking/camping at national parks

18. favorite sport/activity: walking outside

19. cravings-when do you get them, how often per week, what do you crave: When I am stressed out. Also when I haven’t eat all day at work I can over eat when I get home. I will crave cheese and sweets.

20. when do you plan your meals-right before cooking them, the night before, once a week? Several times a week. Browse the supermarket and plan a couple meals while shopping and then make larger batches so that I have leftovers throughout the week.

21. Are you pleased with your body-if not what don’t you like: Core is not toned, and don’t like the skin on my face, and the flab under my chin that I have always had no matter what I weighed. Body views fluctuate: sometimes I can’t stand it and other times I accept it. I think this comes from the fact that I used to be very skinny, at a very unhealthy weight when I was going through a fast growth spurt.

22. Favorite clothes item to wear: Cute patterned skirts

23. Typical attire: Varies depending on my mood. Right now mainly jeans and sweaters.

24. When you see a morbidly obese person, does it make you uncomfortable, feel pity, feel disgust etc? If they are eating unhealthy (like fast food) it makes me question why they continue to eat that way. When I see them while I am out walking I feel like they are trying to better themselves and that is good. Otherwise, I don’t really know their life situations so I try not to judge. It is especially difficult for women to lose weight and with hectic lifestyles it can become overwhelming and it just ends up being a destructive cycle.

25. How important is weight to you when considering boyfriends? Friends? Not important with friends. For a boyfriend, I would like for us to be able to go outside and be active together. Also, to be open to eating healthy.

26. Do you think fat people are lazy people? No

27. Have you changed your diet as you have gotten older? Yes

28. Do you have any health conditions? Nothing major

29. Do you worry about getting fat? Sometimes, especially since work is forcing me to have irregular eating schedules.

30. Do you worry about dying young? No

31. Do you go through periods where you eat the same foods until you are sick of them and move on? No

32. Have you ever hidden your snacking from others, or felt ashamed of your cravings? If applicable. No

33. Is anyone in your family overweight or have any ever been overweight? Yes

34. Growing up did you make your own food choices, if not did you like what your parents gave you? Has your diet changed since moving out of the family home? At first I didn’t like what my parents fed me but I ended up liking it eventually. Growing up with a garden in the backyard is probably why I actually enjoy eating vegetables. It has changed but not too drastically as I still try to incorporate veggies and fruit into my diet.

35. Do you smoke? Drink? How often? How much? Don’t smoke. Drink about once a week, a beer or two.

36. What meats do you eat? What veggies? What fats? What desserts/treats? DO you take vitamins? Meats: all kinds. Veggies: all kinds. Fats: cheeses. Desserts/treats: chocolates. I sometimes try to take vitamins, but then I end up forgetting most of the time

37. Are you as healthy as you want to be? No

38. What people/stresses hold you back from what you want? WORK!!

39. What is your best mental and physical quality? Even though work can be very stressful, I still try to find humor in things and laugh as a way to relieve stress.

40. What quality is most important to you in those you care about? Genuine, kind, and trustworthy.

SELFISH or just plain ol' selfish?

Hope you have all recovered from my verbal diatribe yesterday...if you think I was talking about you, then I'm not-and please don't avoid posting your 'struggles' because of anyone.  Like I said before, if you struggle then you must be putting in effort to begin with, and EVERYONE struggles!  

Sadly, I think those that I was trying to talk to would never imagine I was talking about them, because they are probably content with their decisions-if not they would have already changed something, right?  

I guess that is the logical path-see a problem, change something to fix it.  But food addiction is far from logical for sure, and I am not remiss to admit it.  Case in point-cookie dough.  Yeah, not cookies, cookie dough. My Achilles Heel.

But I realized that for me, every other time I had dieted, lost weight, then regained it, that my heart AND mind was not in it.  This time was different for several reasons that I have talked about before-the switch was flipped.  I went from 'wanting' to lose weight, albeit REALLY BAD, to needing to lose weight if I was ever going to be happy and have a chance at real living and a LONG life.

Therefore, yesterday prior to my own revelation about the switch, I 'assumed' (ass+u+me), that if someone was serious enough to start a BLOG and get into the weight loss blogosphere with full force, then that person HAD to have their heart and mind into it, too, right?  They wanted and needed to lose weight...RIGHT?  Seems like ALOT of energy to just go through the motions...BUT-

Sometimes it is not all about A+B=C I guess, as I didn't take into account the 'attention seeker'.  Someone who maybe was yearning for friendship, attention, a conversation, so that when they found the 'group therapy' in the weight loss blogosphere, they forgot their true motive?  Or maybe found what they really wanted-a few pals, and never pursued the WL for real-mind and heart?  I love my bloggy friends, but would never assume to lead them on with my own false intentions.  Weight loss is too tough, too important for us all, to bullshit about...

Regardless of the state of your 'switch', I wish success for everyone, and I wish commitment for everyone-cause we all need some every once in a while.  There is no joy or advantage for me if someone fails.

So to this post's true topic...many have discussed having to be selfish, put yourself first, in order to really succeed in weight loss.

But being a Mom is selfless.  Now I am not at the point where I want to have a kid, feel ready either...  However, and I'm not sure if this has happened to anyone, how did you get out of the selfish mindset and realize that with pregnancy weight gain is imminent for the health of the child?

I fear that once I reach my goal, then I am never going to want a kid, because I fear putting the weight back on-for any reason...  I know adoption is an option, and may be my only option, but let's set that aside for a second and look at the heart of the issue...

Trust me, I know how horrible it sounds, but after working so hard to get to a weight that I won't have been for 20 years, how do I justify doing something that I know will set me back and make this hell necessary to re-live?  Not that stabilization and maintenance are a walk in the park-but you know what I mean...

I know many of you out there fear the regain-not just fear but FEAR.  Terrified.  Will the want for a kid ever trump my fear of being overweight again?  Anyone have insight on this?  Ideas?

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Boy Who Cried Wolf

The Snowmagator (credit: Patrick) has pretty much swallowed half the country whole, and while it has given me MORE than enough time to catch up on blogs, I am seeing one trend persist across my blogger roll...

And since I am not one to call people out-unless by 'people' I mean 'me', I'll call out myself first.  Being cooped up in the house everyday but Monday and Thursday this week has made me stir crazy.  Bored out of my gourd.  This is where you may come in-seems the majority of us do BAAAAAAAAD things when we are bored.

For me, earlier in the week, I was eating everything not nailed down. I even nibbled on a couch.

Thankfully, I know this is one of my many piggy-triggers...being bored.  So we stopped keeping anything bad in the house a long time ago-read: oreos, doritos, cookie dough, real cheese dip, fake cheese dip, all cheese-impersonating items, and of course, anything that smells remotely of cheese.

So when I went ape-shit crazy earlier in the week, I ate a whole container of Cherub grape tomatoes before Thursday, 20 pieces of turkey pepperoni, and more than my quota of diet sodas-this is off plan.  Thankfully no damage was done, and I'm back on the non-snacking horse.  Sure the items are not THAT bad, but if you could have seen me (think of a gremlin after midnight), you would have been shocked...Hair sticking up in every direction, barely brushed teeth, same sweats and socks, stuffing my cheeks like a squirrel in the fall. 

And my friends, I KNOW many of you did the same.  Well, probably because you wrote about it guiltily on your blogs.

I am all for not repeating history's mistakes, but let's be honest-that's what humans do as creatures of habit-and no one needs to be crucified for relapsing from addiction.  But how will you respond when you fall?  Wait to get back on the wagon next week?  Wait till the kids are back at school?  Wait till you can drive to the gym?  After a Valentine's Day celebration?  

Sadly, I have heard ALL these excuses and more to continue bad behavior on other blogs-to let the wagon pass and wait for another to come by, as if it is not in their control and they don't know when the next wagon will stop.  And if I hadn't paid alot of money to weigh in each week, I'd probably give in to a few excuses, too.

Maybe.  Oh who am I kidding?  I freaking HATE being fat, and I am the all time Guinness record holder of IMPATIENCE.  I want to lose weight and get it done.  Why put off till tomorrow what you can do today?  Yeah I didn't think of that cliche, but it fits here. Therefore, I will not put off thindom.  I don't expect others to be like this and try to drop weight super fast like how I like to, because we are all on different time tables.  But let's face it-losing is losing and healthy change is healthy change no matter how drastic or quick-effort is EFFORT.  

And for those who know me, I am a total softy, and I have lots of compassion, sometimes to my own detriment, for those in trouble or fallen on bad times.  If you are kind in return, I will give you the shirt off my back and the money from my pocket.  My patience for my friends, both bloggy and IRL, is almost limitless.  Almost.

But I've got to call bullshit on some of you (without naming names)-in the most compassionate way that I can, of course.  Because surprisingly I have come to give a care about a lot of you.

So for those of you on-off-on-off the wagon every other week-heck EVERY OTHER DAY-if you were your own best friend, spouse, family member, weight loss counselor-would you be sick of you??  Would you continue to support, coddle, rescue yourself?  For how long?

Don't even try throwing the old 'if you love someone you will love them no matter what' BS.  At some point, even our closest family, our biggest fans, get tired of our BS, our rollercoasters of emotion, being gung ho, then falling apart, eating aisle #3, crying on the scale, vowing to weight loss the next week-ET CETERA.

These same peeps will eventually get sick of watching us KILL ourselves, especially when we KNOW the problem, possess the tools, and have the unconditional support in spades.  

I love the blogosphere, because it is free group therapy.  But here is something to consider-if you ask for help, some confidence building, kick in the ass, whatever you need-then ignore the support week after week, eventually you become PLAYED OUT.  If I swear I'm a millionaire, but dress in rags and drive a Pinto Flintstone-style to work, how long before you rolled your eyes and said, "Sure you're a millionaire.  Whatever you say."  Because you're not my banker, all you know is from what you see.  If a picture is worth a 1000 words, then actions are priceless proof.

How some can emotionally regurgitate then swallow their own tired lines every day and think they will still get healthy, then are SURPRISED by gains every week, is beyond me.  Really?  Are you that shocked?  Or is that mock surprise for my benefit?  'Cause baby I was born at night but not last night.

Then you become the BOY WHO CRIED WOLF, figuratively speaking.  

No one comes to help you, because you lie to yourself and you lie to us.  Then you get eaten alive (fill in whatever failing endpoint you want to here-death, bedridden, morbidly obese for life, never fitting into airplane seats, acquire 5 new co-morbid conditions, countless expensive medications, losing your fans' respect, teaching your kids how to shorten their own lifespans, being that person no one trusts because you NEVER FOLLOW THROUGH).

I am not patient with myself, but I love you guys and I REALLY want you to do well, and I will hold your hand and pump you up when you fall as long as you need it, and if I have ever commented on your blog, then you know that to be true.  But if you can't string together a few days of good behavior and put forth SOME effort in at least a mildly consistent manner, then no one, not just me, will help you if you won't try to help yourself.  

And the wolf can have you.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Your issues helped you get fat, what helps you stay there?

My answers to this question are:
1.  I love food
2.  My huge clothes fit just fine
3.  I was comfortable having the freedom to stuff my face and follow my cravings (read:  complacent)

What are your answers?

BUT, there may be something novel taking an effect that you hadn't considered...

In the January 6th issue of Obesity, a highly respected and extremely stringent scientific journal, David Val-Laillet and his French collaborators did a very interesting study in mini-swine (a smaller, more domesticated breed of pig).

They were pursuing a trend seen in adult human males-where obese males had less activation (lesser functioning) in the prefrontal cortex of their brains, compared to their lean counterparts.

And, you guessed it, the prefrontal cortex is important for inhibiting inappropriate behavior, feeling full, and meal termination.

So they used age and weight-matched pigs to make sure trends seen were consistent.  They then induced obesity in half of them via high fat diet (sound familiar?).  They then measured brain flow, which is a measurable way to look at brain activity (this was what was measured in humans too, as stated above).  They were looking for brain areas that had activity differences between the fat & thin groups.

They saw MANY activity differences in other areas of the brain between the obese and lean group-but importantly they confirmed that there is less activity in the prefrontal cortex in the chunky piggies.

So they concluded that this reduced pig brain activity most likely corresponds to that seen in humans, and that this change is an 'ACQUIRED FEATURE OF OBESITY'.

What does that mean for us, my lovlies?  Getting fat eventually shuts down the area of the brain we need MOST to lose the weight!  How counter intuitive is that???? But is this an excuse???  Heck no, we don't need any more excuses!

This study will have to be done in women to confirm the same findings, BUT any of you with a bunch of estrogen (read:women) can probably figure out the ending here without a finished study...  I know for me, the fatter I got, the less full I felt, and consuming huge meals were no obstacle.

So-it's not ALL your past issues, love for food, external pressures, enabling environment that made you fatter or kept you heavy.  Does this make you feel a little less dysfunctional and mental?  There IS a physiological difference between our and 'normal' lean people's brains!

Good-now go eat some damn veggies and burn those cals, since it doesn't matter how we got here-there is one road out (no matter your diet plan, surgery, method).  Well two really-but the latter dead end is not a road any of us want to travel...

But maybe we are a lot more similar to each other than we think, at least physiologically speaking...so strength in numbers!  Now go take back your prefrontal cortex!!!

More Addicitve than Food!

I didn't think anything could pull my attention from wanting to stuff my face today, but sure enough this game has done it!  So here are the rules:

'How Old Is Your Brain'
This is a fun game, but will drive you nuts.
The site instructions are in Japanese, so read below!
And do it only once! (Yeah right!)

 ~First you have to click on this link~  Then-
1. Touch 'start'
2. Wait for 3, 2, 1.
3. Memorize the number's position on the screen,
then click on the empty circles in the order
from where the smallest number was, to the biggest number.
4. At the end of game, the computer will tell you the age of your brain.

Those of you snowed/iced in like me will either love me or hate me for this!
BTW, hubs got a 20 on this, it took me 5 times to equal his score!  Bastardo!!!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Sending out some love two weeks early

My husband doesn't ask for much...and I did give him a shoutout for his housework in a post a few days back.  And he jokingly said, 'that's all I get?'.  Maybe he was fishing for a BJ...(warning:  gals if you don't know what a BJ is, don't google or ask your kids).

But you know what?  My husband deserves a shoutout, and not just because it is the month of love.

'Cause this man is incredible.

When I met him, I was a size 8, and 6 pounds heavier than I am now.  This was the guy who NEVER said ANYTHING about me needing to lose weight, but was supportive of anything I wanted to try to be healthy.  This guy watched me balloon up to over 245 pounds-because I was actually over 245 at our wedding, I just didn't 'do' scales then.

And he still wanted me in the bedroom, and he didn't cringe or walk apart from me when I would go out in his huge sweatpants and greasy hair because I didn't give a flying fuck about how I looked.  He gave me space when I didn't want sex for months because I felt like a nasty piece of shit.  He stood next to me at City Hall when we got married, even though I looked AWFUL, and was as wide as he is tall.  Unfortunately, I am not kidding about that proportion.

Before you think or say that he should have tried to encourage me to lose weight or watch my eating, read back into my posts and get to know me...that isn't something that would EVER fly with me.  It would have had the opposite effect and I would have hated him-after throwing a world-tilting tantrum.  I'm not a nice person who handles criticism-it wouldn't have gone over well.  Understatement.

My hubs is 6'4", and 215 pounds.  He wears XXL because it is the only size long enough for his limbs.  When I started wearing his huge clothes, and buying all XXL for myself because they FIT my girth and chunka-lunk cottage-cheesy thighs, he didn't blink.

He has completely forgone foods that he used to love, because he knows that my just knowing that he eats them would drive me insane.  Again read this: I am not a tolerant person.  He needs to lose NO weight, in fact when I met him he was too skinny.  But he works out because he knows it serves to spur me on-because I am competitive and need an opponent.  He figures it might as well be him, instead of myself.  He helped me to stop fighting myself.

This man did exactly the right things to be there for me, because he TOOK THE TIME to know me well enough to know that I would eventually reach my fat tipping point, and would make the changes I needed by myself.

This man does the housework the majority of the time, and I really do not do enough to help.  He ate my rubbery hockey puck scallops that stunk of fish stench, though he HATES fish-this is huge, trust me. ;-)

He drives me to work whenever I ask, gets me gas before I even brush my teeth in the morning, and loves my crazy dysfunctional family-and the dysfunctional me to boot!

Did I mention he is a hot piece of ass and younger than me?  Yeah, I'm lucky.  Somehow I got the full package in spite of myself, and I don't do enough to show him how much.

So here's to you, honey...I may have had to venture to Iowa to find you, but it was well worth the trip, and I'd do it all again 1000 times over-in a snowmageddon blizzard.

So here is my New Year resolution, a tad late but equally as well-intentioned:  I'm going to work on being the wife you really deserve-with maybe a BJ or two in there to boot.  I love you forever, wimmer.