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Wednesday, January 31, 2007

January

This book I keep going on about says that you should write a list of all the good things you've achieved at the end of the day, rather than focus on the negative. I really like that idea, and to that end am going to try and do a monthly 'look back' here to (hopefully) keep me motivated. Technically I haven't been doing this for a full month, but with the calender being in place for hundreds of year, I figure it's better to stick with it.

Things I have achieved in January:

I made the decision to take control of my body (and more importantly, put it into action).
I have lost 12lbs (possibly more once TOM leaves)
I have blogged every day*
I have logged my food every day**
I have cut my chocolate bar habit from 2 or 3 on a work day, to 1 this month
I have really made the effort to listen to my body when eating, and put a name to the emotions I'm feeling to separate 'hunger' from 'feeling bad'.


*Since starting Jan 12th
**Since starting Jan 6th

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Help!

The US tax system breaks my brain.

I worked in Florida for a year, came back to the UK in September and now I want to get my taxes back. I was working for Walt Disney World, on a Q1 (Cultural Representative) visa that is designed speically for the program I was on. I got sent my W-2 form today because I was in a tipped position and it said I had 1824.90 federal tax withheld (all of which I should be eligable to get back).

What now?

I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT TO DO WITH IT! I think the form I need to fill out is 1040NR-EZ, aside from that I know nothing. I was going to file online but all the places ask for a US address which I don't have. I don't know how to get the form and tax places here are obviously UK tax places so won't know what to do. I don't know how to get the form , how to fill it in or where to send it even if I do fill it in.

It's got me (quite literally, as I suffer from trichotillomania) tearing my hair out!

Monday, January 29, 2007

I want a duvet day

It's still freezing here thanks to the broken boiler. You know that advert where people take their blankets around with them? I totally want to do that.

I stepped on the scale this morning and it said 240.2!

241: Crouched in the corner, broken and weeping.
240: Looking decidedly nervous.

I was going to say it's not official for another few days, but it's unlikely I'm going to weigh more after TOM so I'm going to take the reading and run.

This was on Yahoo! News today, I was especially glad that they pointed out you can't choose to 'spot lose' fat from a certain part of your body.

*tumbleweed rolls past*

Wow, where was everybody today? If it weren't for Lisa and the fact that she's a self-confessed blogaholic I would have had nothing new to read at all. Has everyone just been really busy? Obviously I'm the saddo with no life outside the computer ;)

I did my DVD today! I count that as an achievement because I am so bad at actually getting up and doing exercise. It kept me warm anyhow, the boiler in our house broke so it's freezing in here.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Okay, so I lied

I couldn't stop myself. 241.8 though, if you're interested.

Edit: Panic over, my body's natural clock was just a bit slow that's all, it's fine now. Hey, if I hit 241.8 the first morning though, does that mean I have a nice little weight drop to look forward to after it's done? That would be kinda awesome.

I promise this is the last you'll here on the ToM side until next month.

I owe somebody a penny

I'm out of excuses. I didn't start. Which is weird because according to the calender, I really should have. I'm now stuck in that stupid holding pattern where you know it's coming and you just kind of wish it would so you could get it over with already. It's planning a ninja-like stealth attack. I can feel it in my bones.

Yes, I'm aware this post is also probably TMI for the large majority of you all. I share because you're special, I feel it brings us closer together as people.

I didn't weigh myself this morning because I have a feeling the scale isn't going to move due to the oncoming arrival (or worse, rise a little more in preparation for the first day). The times I have weighed in between now and my last report have shown little bits coming off, but nothing to get excited about so no 'official' counts until it's all over.

You now know more about the inner workings of my body then my family and possibly my doctor. Enjoy.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Yes, more food.

My dinner tonight:



It looks like a big jumbled mess but it's actually a pack of winter veg (carrots, parsnips, leeks, a couple of little potatoes, (and weirdly for winter veg) red onion and green sweet peppers) you can buy ready cut with some sprigs of rosemary to roast in the oven. It was in there for about an hour hence the 'juicy' look of everything, then 20 minutes before it was finished cooking I chopped up a big mushroom and added it to the mix. I then cooked a chicken breast and presto! gorgeousness on a plate.

The rosemary roasting in the oven makes the house smell lovely too.

Friday, January 26, 2007

And in the TMI catagory we have:

I weighed myself this morning to the tune of 242.2 and was wondering what the hell was going on. I stepped off the scale and stretched, my lower back is a bit sore and I can't understand why I feel so heavy this morning. Gaining weight is one thing but feeling like th-

Hang on.

*checks calendar*

I think I've just figured out why the sudden, stubborn rise is weight.

I'll bet you a shiny penny that I start my period sometime in the next 24 hours.

He Giveth and He Taketh Away

So, 241 wants it's ass back. It made a sneaky little deal with Scale (who was still smarting from a few of the cuss words I threw at it during the battery incident) and they have conspired against me so that this morning Scale showed 242.6 again.

241: This means war.

Also, 240? You can blame 241 for what's about to happen to you. That's what you get for hanging around with a bad crowd.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The God of Weight-loss is Bountiful

I woke up this morning and went through my usual routine. Wake up, turn over, curse winter, try and go back to sleep, realise I need the loo, curse my bladder, stumble down the hall to the bathroom, weigh myself on the way out.

I, like many people, tend to weigh lighter in the morning so I was a little disappointed to see that it still read 242.6, the .6 fluctuation still there making a mockery of my 'lost 10lbs' celebration, but I try to deal because (let's say it together children) you vary from day to day so it's not 'real' weight. Okay, fine.

I go back to bed and wake up an hour later, needing the bathroom again (wtf, was I sleep-drinking or something?) step on the scale and there it was. 241. All the fluctuation reasoning flies out the window because I don't care it officially counts. Screw water weight or whatever the hell else it is that causes the scales to change overnight (or in my case, overhour) I now OWN 241. It's ass is mine.

I totally just had to edit this post after I accidentally wrote 141 instead of 241 because OMG GUYS WISHFUL THINKING IS TAKING OVER MY BODY!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Victory is mine!

I went and got some new coin batteries for the scale before work today, the tantrum is officially cancelled (unless of course I go upstairs and find out they're the wrong ones, in which case it's so on).

I had rhubarb crumble with custard from the wheel of doom at work. I was ready to get all 'woe is me' and 'I'm terrible' but you know what? I'm not. I wanted it, I had it, it was delicious right down to the last delicious bite, and I'm not sorry. I was, however, careful with my calories for the rest of the day. I got home and had a baked sweet potato and a mushroom stuffed with onions and peppers (and a tiny smidgen of cheese) for my tea, only to be incredibly surprised when I went to fitday and realised that all my calories for the day didn't even break 1100. Craziness.

I may have a bowl of Shreddies if I'm hungry later.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Uh-oh.

The batteries on my scales are dead. Deceased. Gone to a better place.

No more weighing in for me. This is a problem.

My scales take those lithium coin cell batteries and we only have the regular ones around the house, so I'm going to have to go early to work and hope really hard that they sell them, otherwise I may have to throw a small tantrum. I'm just warning you all.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Good Morning

I woke up this morning and stepped on the scale to discover that not only was I back down from those little fluctuations but I had lost nearly two pounds! Go me!

It got me thinking about my calorie intake and checking my old fitday logs. Last week I was eating lower calories then I think I should have been. I thought I was a little low, but then I was still losing little amounts so I ignored it, assuming I should just be eating less than I first anticipated, I wasn't hungry anyway so there was no point in changing. Then this week I started stalling then fluctuating a little and ate a bit more the last couple of days (nothing drastic, but instead of being 12-1300 I was just under 1600). The result? no change yesterday but a bigger drop today, putting me at 10lbs down since I started and on track to lose 20 by March 1st (my first mini-goal).

Me likey.

So that's nice, I get to eat more food. I also felt much better this morning in terms of cravings. It must of just been a bad two days and I'm proud to say I didn't do anything too damaging during them (even though I really really wanted to).

Okay. Time for breakfast and the West End Workout. I finally bought latinasize yesterday, but I want to master at least part of the one I'm doing now before starting another.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Couldn't I just...?

Food has been tauting me all day. All the food that was hanging around the house before I left? A whole lot of it is still here. I've been really good (it got close though, I ate half a snack size pork pie and then had to move away, I counted it on fitday though), I had a small sandwich, two chicken drumsticks a boiled egg and a lot of salad from the buffet, followed by a banana. When I got in from work I made myself some dinner by cooking some chicen breast in a smokey sauce and culling just a little rice and a lot of salad from the table.

The cake is still there. The trifle is still there. The caramel shortbread thingies were still there.

This has been the first day that I have really really wanted something that wasn't good for me food-wise since I started this. Before it was 'yes, that would taste good but I'm not having it', now my thoughts are pretty much limited to 'gingercakegingercaketriflegingercakepie'. I find myself approximating calories in my head and trying to convince myself I could do it. The only thing stopping me right now is how bad I'll feel for it later.

At work there were lots of yummy looking desserts in the wheel-o-doom and for some reason I really wanted a mars bar. I was thinking 'you've already had that half of a mini pork pie, you may as well just have the chocolate and enjoy it', but then if I choose to eat a chocolate bar I want it to be because I decided in a advance 'okay, you can have this today' and not because I gave in to a moment of weakness.

I don't understand why just today my brain has been screaming at me to eat all the crap I can find. Maybe because it's just so blatently available right now? I almost hope my period is due so I at least have a rational explantion but alas, methinks not for another week (ah, something else to look forward to).

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Temptation, thy name is pork pie

My Uncle Dean is having a birthday at our house today, he's come out of hospital for it specially so we've done him a little party. An example of our table:



That salad in the corner there? pretty much the only thing I can eat. Having so much nibble-y food there though is going to kill me. There's pork pie, scotch eggs, cheese straws, different types if cakes, a trifle in the fridge. They're trying to kill me, seriously.

I have to work later, a t least that will get me out of the house. When I get home I'm going to see if I can get away with just cooking my own dinner.

Reasons I am Stupid: #894524762

I was sad when I started blogging again that I could only remember a few of the links I used to frequent. With the forum I used to visit being dead, I had no way of getting them back. Instead I did some searches online and eventually came up with the lovely list you see to your right.

So today I'm looking through an old blog of mine from when I lived in Sweden (the time I lost a lot of weight before). I don't realise for about 15 minutes of reading that Duh! There's a list right there on the page from when I merged my blogs.

Expect an update of links just as soon as I've trawled through them to see who is still posting.

Edit: My old link list has become the graveyard of blogland, no new links for us.

Friday, January 19, 2007

DVD: 1, Zan: 0

I did the West End Workout dvd as planned today, or rather I did the first of the 30 mintue workout on there. It kind of kicked my ass a little but I enjoyed it. The put all the moves together quite quickly so I fumbled a couple of times but the more I do it the better I'll get. The result was very 'Chicago' though so that was fun. I'll try the second one tomorrow.

I didn't go to town (again! I is lazy) but it's okay. I was going to get the other dvd but I think I'll work on this one until I get bored and then go for another, the prices will come down after the resolution craze anyhway.

I checked the scale today and I had gone down so yesterday was just a blip like I thought, I'll be interested to see if adding the workout makes much of a difference to the scale reading. I can't decide if I want to have an official 'weigh-in' day on top of my checks, I suppose it would give me a more concrete view of how much I'm losing...

Dinner

Before:



Take one chicken breast, season with black pepper. Put a little oil in the bottom of the pan (the low cal sprays work really well here as it give a good coating to stop sticking). Place chicken in pan along with sliced onion, sweet red pepper, and baby button mushrooms. Bake in oven until chicken is done.

Serve with a baked potato and green runner beans (or veg of choice). Yum!

After:

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Motoring along

There was a slight fluctuation on the scale today, but then I was way under on calories yesterday and I don't think I drank quite enough water so that is to be expected. I weigh myself everyday too (boo hiss, I know) so I'm not going to freak out every time the results wobble, and at 0.2lbs up it was a wobble.

Re: My last post I planned to go into town and get my dvd's today, however I woke up to wind and cold and dad cleaning downstairs. I need privacy to work out, I don't like the pressure of someone watching me exercise. He's gone back to work for a couple of hours now but I have to go to Sainsbury's to get some lamb for his tea. A month with his Ukrainian girlfriend visiting has left him wanting traditional roast dinner - he's a creature of habit my dad. I, on the other hand, will be having my last chicken breast, possibly with a baked potato I haven't decided yet. They may sell the West End Workout there though, so I might still be able to get it.

If not I'll drag my old exercise bike into my room and pedal while watching some TV.

I is Dum

I have decided to forget the gym in favour of exercise DVD's until I feel more comfortable, so in a flash of motivation I went onto Amazon.co.uk and decided to order Jennifer Ellison's West End Workout and Latinasize (I got hooked on Strictly Come Dancing while it was on TV and she was one of the professional partners). I got my email confirmation today that the item had shipped and realised I had accidental sent it to an old university address of mine instead of my current one.

Cue Panic.

I called amazon and they said once it's posted they can't get it back, however if the people at the address refuse to sign for the package it will get sent back to the warehouse and I will get a full refund. I then have to go hunt up my old landlord's phone number and call him for the first time in two years to explain that I'm an idiot and could he please ask the current tenants to refuse the parcel.

I think tomorrow I'll just walk up to town and buy the DVD's instead of reordering. Seems safer somehow...

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Help?

I'm looking for a site I used to visit, I thought it was fruitandveg.com but obviously that would be too simple. Basically it lists all kinds of fruit and veg, what vitamins they contain, why they're good for you etc. It had a search feature at the top so you could just type in anything you wanted.

Anyone know the address?

Balancing numbers

I have to nip off to work in a few minutes, so this shouldn't be too long. I was really under on my calories yesterday (only just over 900), something I don't like to do very often as it tends to have a detrimental effect on my efforts. The thing is, I find myself awake more in the night now, so I'm sleeping through breakfast/lunch times, having either a bowl of cereal (I need to get some more as I'm out at the moment) or a piece of fruit before work, then making something fr dinner at 10.30 ish when I get back. After that I don't really want to eat for the rest of the night, I'll have to do a rethink.

On the up side, I've been drinking more water the last couple of days and it really makes me feel better. I've never really had a problem with my water intake as I don't like soda, but the last few weeks I've just been drinking less. Not replacing it with anything, just less. We have the heating on a lot here and it's only just starting to occur to me how dehydrated I feel when I wake up. A few glasses later and presto! all is well.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Motivation

What's your motivation for losing weight?

'To be healthy' I used to say ostentatiously (when I really meant 'to look good'), but I find that idea a little too vague to wrap my mind around. Not to mention the fact that there are people out there that are healthy and happy despite not being their ideal weight, so while it's an excellent and valid reason to start eating right, a month in I don't tend to feel quite so virtuous. I tend to need something solid and unchanging, like a big event.

I'm kind of the same with money. I'll start saving 'for a rainy day' and then it will slowly peter out, but when I had a solid goal (a new laptop for example) I enjoy squirreling away as much as I can.

My event right now is that I've applied to participate in the JET (Japanese Exchange and Teaching) programme, I find out this month if they'll let me interview. The thought of having to live being compared to all the sterotypically skinny Japanese women makes me break out in a cold sweat. For reals. Even normal (quote, unquote) sized people have trouble shopping there as Westerner's just tend to be bigger than the Japanese average. Here, it's not socially acceptable to be fat, but there is at least a little recognition within the clothing industry that larger sizes need to be catered for. They can be harder, but not impossible to find. Japan (as far as I can gather), not so much.

Mentally it's going to be a challenge as I would have stuck out as being different anyway (especially if I'm put in a more rural area), even without the weigt issue. Eating disorders arise when the patient mistakenly believe they're fatter than everyone else (disclaimer: I know that's a gross simplification, don't sue), in my case, that's pretty much going to be true. I've alway wanted to go to Japan so this wouldn't stop me, but it's a worry.

On the plus side, the fact that it's a worry definately helps me make the right choices when it comes to food. It may even (horror of horrors) make me start exercising one of these days. Though that does make me wonder, if I don't get this will all my good intentions come crashing down with no solid goal to prop them? I'll try my best to not let it, the devestation of not doing the year would be bad enough at that point.

Sigh, it's a bit of an uncertain time. I swing from being excited and confident to worried and scared and back again. I didn't get it when I did a year in Sweden, or the US, but I guess it's pretty normal when you face a big change like going to another country, right?

Right?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Magically delicious

Food-wise the day passed with all but the most minor of hiccups. Said hiccup being that I forgot to take a nectarine to work tonight so I could eat it at break, but I had a big bowl of cereal before going out so it just meant I was quite hungry when I got home. Work was absolutely rammed owing to the fact that Tesco was closed due to a fire in an electrical sub-station nearby this afternoon. If the amount of customers I saw when I got there at five is any indication, then Sainsbury's must have made a packet today! It was nice to get home, sit down and have a meal.

Speaking of it, I made a gorgeous sweet and sour chicken for dinner today. I used half a jar of sweet/sour cooking sauce my sister got from Tesco (shhhh though, Sainsbury's will hear. And kill me for the betrayal. Though in my defense I bought everything else from Sainsbury's I swear!). I sliced some green and yellow peppers, a small onion, a few chunks of fresh pinaeapple, and some chicken breast that I got on offer, then stuck it all in a pan and simmered. Some rice noodles on the side and I was extremely happy.

It was a big meal (though thankfully I don't have that 'dropped to the bottom of my stomach and trying to kill me' feeling that I would get with one of my old type of meals), in the future I'll probabaly go for smaller portions or add more veg and just hold the noodles, it worked for today though. I wouldn't usually have such a big portion for dinner as I don't finish work until 10pm, so don't usually end up eating util 10:45-ish. Knowing the general concensus is that eating late night is the devil's work to dieters everywhere I may try having my main meal for lunch before work from now on, then just limit myself to a bowl of cereal or something else small when I get in at night.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Relief and Panic

My father went away for the weekend with some of his family and his girlfriend so I have the house to myself for a few days, this is usually an occasion of overwhelming relief for a variety of different reasons. I have a lot of issues with my dad, I'll save most of them for a therapist another time, but mostly I find that he seems to enjoy belittling people and with me food is an obvious target. It doesn't help that he seems to have a complete set of double standards as he can and does easily polish off a box of shortbread in a sitting (argh, I'm not going to go into this much more right now as I'll start ranting - weren't angsty 'God I hate my parents' monologues supposed to be left behind with teenager-hood?).

Anyway, when he's not here for short periods of time like this, I find myself on a continuous binge of cakes, eclairs, cookies (I have a sweet tooth) and anything else I can get my hands on. I just shovel it down as fast as it can go because I can and he's not there to judge and who know's when I'll be able to do it again! Of course, then I have the whole problem of having to hide boxes and wrappers in my room for taking out later so he doesn't find them in the trash, skulking around jumpy and nervous that he's going to see something and say something. A couple of months ago we were having an argument and he started shouting at me about how I was an embarrassment to him, how he was embarrassed that people come to his house and see me. It's played on my mind a lot since then and makes me teary even now but looking around at the graveyard of chocolate smeared empty packets there were times when I would just think 'of course he is, so am I'.

So this time I thought 'no, I'm not doing that again' and something surprising happened. I mentioned I've been trying to identify my feelings when I do something to try and recognise why I'm thinking that way, and what I felt the most (actually with a surprising force) was utter panic. Don't get me wrong, I'm not tempted to go buy something, nor do I want chocolate with anymore than the usual lust but maybe that's it. Mentally, the logical side of my brain is in complete acceptance that it's okay, we're just not going to eat any junk. Physically however, even sitting here thinking about the fact that I won't (not can't, I can see the supermarket from the window where I'm typing this) has got my heart beating in my throat, my hands actually went a little shaky.

It really surprised me that, subconsciously, I felt so strongly about it. Do you guys have the American equivalent of the TV show Brat Camp over there? You know when the juvenile delinquents are raving and screaming and threatening and are absolutely terrified really that they suddenly don't have a choice, while the counsellor just repeats the instructions looking all peaceful and serene until they do it? I think that's my body right now.

I think I've scared my inner-ASBO.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Taking the comfort out

We've all been here. Maybe not here online, but we've all said what I'm saying now.

New year, new start, must absolutely make this stick this time.

Granted, it's something I've said before but maybe this time I really will. I was doing so well before (possibly the most useless sentence ever: 'but I was doing so well... before...) but I was, 50lbs down and feeling great.

I don't feel great anymore and I'm not sure what when that happened. The obvious answer would be 50lbs later, the not so obvious ones I'll work through as I go, but looking a little harder I know enough about them to say that emotional eating has always been a companion and never a friend. I'm reading a book right now called 'Life is Hard, Food is Easy' and in a weirdly excruciating way it seems to be helping a little; I don't think I'm entirely enjoying it, but it makes me think (which I suppose is the whole point). It's making me stop and just examine my reactions and why I want the foods I'm reaching for before I actually get it to my mouth.

It takes the comfort out of comfort food. A scary prospect because generally it's not the food I want but something the food can't give me and that realisation, the true realisation, not just saying 'oh I'm an emotional eater' like that will excuse everything else as pointless, but knowing and pinpointing to myself 'There! There's a feeling behind that jaffacake, look at it! Feel it!' puts me somewhere a little painful more often than not.

Maybe that's the reason I have consciously focused on areas other than the mental in my prior attempts. Maybe that's why I failed. Maybe trying to bleed the poison off these feeling will help me see my bad relationship with food for what it is: a bad relationship. Or maybe I'll be one of those people whole update for a few weeks and then disappear from cyberspace, I guess time will tell. But if you're willing to hitch a ride with me while I detox some bad mojo along with a whole lot of fat, then hop in, I'd love to have you.

I can't promise you it'll be pretty all the time but then few things are. But if I succeed in shutting this cakehole of mine, things should get nicer as we go.