Tuesday, October 14, 2014
This week was good.
Lovely sunny autumn weather, good walks and runs, and yoga outside on the terrace.
Eating went well, cooked 3 times.
A friend grows tomatillos in their garden and gave us some, and I made roasted tomatillo sauce - turned out very well, my first attempt.
Dinners are still my weak point, though.
Once I had potato chips for dinner, with lots of carrot sticks - crappy choice but amount was OK and at least I had the carrots.
The last 2 nights mild overeating: salty crackers after dinner at my parents, and fresh white baguettes last night at home.
Oh well... I can maintain if this is the worst thing I do, 1 or 2 times a week.
This may be a result of getting confident not knowing my weight.
I feel good, and I wore my skinny jeans during the weekend and to work on Monday.
I bought it about half year ago, and it fits well only when I'm at the lower end of my range. So I put it on rarely, because - obviously - usually I'm above the lower end.
Now it fits me well : )
Another good sign is that my meals are less automatic
I mean when I have lunch at home (usually more than the packed lunches at work), I tend to skip afternoon snack or dinner, once I skipped both. I may get my natural sense of hunger back one day.
Saturday, October 11, 2014
I used to do weight lifting with a barbell, but I replaced that with yoga, which I enjoy much more.
So no lifting for about half a year.
The only way I work my upper body is yoga, and it is enough to maintain the muscles:
We have a warm and sunny October here, I enjoy every minute outside.
Thursday, October 09, 2014
Mindfulness is a good place to be.
When I first read about it (here, in SP articles about mindful eating and walking) I thought "oh dear it sounds really boring, thinking all the time" and dismissed the idea.
Now, 3 years later, several books and many hours of practice later, I can see I got it totally wrong.
Mindfulness is not about thinking. It is about not thinking.
It is about staying in the present, paying attention to what is and what I am doing right now, and not thinking about things that are not there: past and future.
One can breath, walk, eat, wash the dishes or do any simple everyday activity mindfully.
Meditation, like focusing on how breathing in and out feels, helps to stay present, and - as one of my favorite books smartly puts it - helps to clear up the "thick fog of subconscious thinking", by creating a pause in the continuous flow of thinking (I searched my books for this quote but could not find it).
I try to remember this often during my day.
Three times a week I walk outside in the morning, about 20 minutes feeling how my body feels moving, how my steps touch the ground, what my eyes see, how the air feels on my face.
Another 20 minutes on the way back I practice a lovingkindness meditation, that I put together from the examples I read in books.
It is about sending loving thoughts to myself, to someone I like, to someone neutral, to someone I love, and someone I have a difficult relationship with.
This is how it goes:
"May I be peaceful any happy, may I live with ease
May I be safe and healthy, may I be safe from harm
May I be free from anger, anxiety and fear
My happiness depends on my own thoughts and actions, not on my loved ones - I don't blame them when I'm not happy
The happiness of my loved ones depends on their own thoughts and actions - I cannot make them happy - I accept and respect their life journey and I don't try to control them"
and then I repeat the first 3 lines for someone I like, for someone neutral, for someone I love, and for someone I have a difficult relationship with, adding actualities if there are any.
I have ran out of real people on the last category, so I send loving thoughts to incompetent and corrupt politicians ; )
Sometimes my mind is preoccupied and drifts away, but usually I manage to stay focused, and this practice is really uplifting.
Going through these good wishes, I almost always realize that right now, this morning I am safe, I am healthy, I am free from anger, anxiety or fear - and compared to this, the petty inconveniences of life don't really matter.
Tuesday, October 07, 2014
Time is flying!
Week 5 was very good.
Ate well, did all my workouts, slept well.
On Sunday DS and me made sushi (from scratch) and it turned out very well.
I guess I haven't gained, even might have got closer to the lower end of my weight range.
Yesterday was all good too, except the evening.
I got home late from work, tired and somewhat frustrated.
My dinner was fine - chicken breast, vegetable mix and 2 ounces of bread, and 1 small square of dark chocolate.
But the evening didn't end well: DH opened a huge bar of dark chocolate (one square as big as 4 squares of my chocolate bar)... first I said no... then accepted a half square... and ended up eating 4 huge squares.
We watched an episode of The Wire which is fine and I love this series... but then watched another episode just because I was too lazy to get up. This is really too much, as one episode is 60 minutes, and very dense, loaded with information, emotions and all kinds of trouble.
So I went to bed at midnight, and read my book for another 30 minutes.
My sleep was short and restless, woke up too early from bad dreams.
It is really amazing how one poor choice can start an avalanche of stupid actions, isn't it?
I mean I was tired and frustrated, all I needed was a light comforting meal, some peaceful activity to wind down, and then an early night.
I managed to do just the opposite - I'll make an effort tonight to make mindful decisions.
Thursday, October 02, 2014
Huh, the past 3 days were tough.
Mon-Tue I had a 2-day business trip, and on Wednesday another one, doing quality checks.
I knew in advance that by Tuesday night I will be dead tired, and Wednesday is 8 hours + 3 hours drive both ways. I hate to drive in the dark highways when I'm tired, and I can't bill an overnight stay on this project (what I normally do).
So I asked my boss if I could go by train and she said yes.
Of course it takes longer (bus- train-tram-work-tram-train-bus) and of course I was dead tired when I got on the train at 7 pm, but I was so happy I could just sit and relax, rather than driving.
I even did a full 45 minute sitting meditation - well it turned out a bit strange, because one man a few seats away was annoyed by his in-laws and shared his feelings with his friend traveling with him, and also by phone with others ; )
I reminded myself to focus on my breath, and not to judge his voice as unpleasant, but accept it as neutral sound.
It worked, I didn't get annoyed but finished my meditation peacefully.
This is a huge improvement for me.
When I started practicing meditation, in the first weeks I was overly cautious to avoid any external noise, and was stressed when I got disturbed.
I have understood that the main goal of meditation is non-doing, non-thinking, non-judging, and acceptance of what already is.
I'm working from home Thu-Fri, and -as I had to cancel yesterday's run - I had planned to run today.
But I woke up dead tired and could not get up.
I woke up some more I realized I can't get up because I'm too tired to enjoy running.
So I decided to walk instead, and got out of bed immediately.
I had my walk, had my breakfast, read the blogs of SparkFriends which were exceptionally interesting and uplifting, and now I feel good and ready to work on the huge excel sheets of today's task.
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