Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Since getting back on track, I have stayed on track and been working hard, getting results slowly but surely. On Saturday, a very hot day, I had a second birthday celebration with my sister and some friends out at a campsite in town and then later in the evening I drove out to Eau Claire to celebrate some more with my friend Bryan, all of which amounted to a day of drinking probably upwards of two gallons of water since I don't drink alcohol anymore and having a very excellent day overall which made up for the blues I was feeling earlier in the week. It also led to some weight loss. In the interest of keeping this weight off, I've been drinking plenty of water, moving as often as possible, and I bought some Tibetan Sorig Stress incense which helps alleviate mental stress & strains which is what usually triggers a lot of my depressions and weight gain. It seems to be helping.
One thing that's really been helping me to stay on track lately is my UP24. It's been giving me these alerts to let me know things like in the past two weeks I've averaged a yellow Food Score of 7.9/10 which means I've been eating a fair amount of healthy nutrients (eating oatmeal with brown sugar in the mornings and string cheese in the afternoon always brings my score down) so if I add more veggies to my diet my score will go green, and on Wednesdays I always beat both my move and sleep goals. As time goes by it's been learning more things about me and giving me more information about myself and my fitness, sleep, and eating, which is really motivating! My habits have been getting healthier and consequently I've been feeling a lot better, which propels me forward. And I credit a lot of my success lately to just drinking enough water. It's still hard to pass up unhealthy food, but it's getting a lot easier to make better choices, especially when I'm trying to get a good food score for the day.
This is my new mantra. I am really trying to keep in mind that what matters is what I'm doing right now, in the present, and the only way I'm going to lose the rest of this weight is if I continue to take steps towards being healthy right now, not tomorrow. So, when I'm tempted to stray from my meal plan I drink some water instead and think about what I'm doing before I do it, if I really want to do that to myself. Exercise doesn't seem to be too much of a problem these days. I have gotten addicted to walking. I do nine miles and right away I want to do twelve. But, I know I need to make time to do other things, too, but walking is fun!
I am really putting in the work these days. I have learned to stop being upset about not getting results when I haven't worked as hard as I could have. You get out of it what you put into it, so I'm putting in as much as I can. Hoping to reach the 70-lb mark again in the next couple of days, that would make me really happy. And just making a point to appreciate and enjoy every day and whatever it brings.
Friday, August 15, 2014
Since gaining some extra on my birthday, I am now back down to 185.0, the weight I was previously at before my birthday, so I am officially back on track. From here I can start focusing on the next pound and moving forward. I am feeling better and doing much better overall. I've really been working on taking it one day at a time, one meal at a time, one workout at a time. And taking my focus off of how far I have yet to go and instead putting it on how far I've come and all that I've accomplished so far. Thinking about how well I'm doing right now and enjoying working to meet my goals. Drinking my 8 glasses of water a day has certainly been beneficial to me; I've felt a lot healthier and more energetic since I started drinking the water and it's something I want to stick with for as long as I can. I just feel a lot better since replacing soda with water. I've saved a lot of calories, too. I've also been working to make my meal plans as enjoyable as possible. I find that I do like having regular meal times, knowing that at a particular time during the day I will have a meal instead of just eating randomly. I am also becoming very dependent on logging my food. In the morning right away I make a meal plan for the day using the Spark nutrition tracker and that gives me an idea of how many calories I'll be eating that day and then I input my food as I eat it on my UP band app. I've been doing pretty well with this lately. I've been staying within my calorie range for the day for the past few days and my weight has reflected that. I feel like I've been making real progress, getting a lot healthier, and I've had the energy to walk nine miles every day the past few days, too. Feels good to get in those fitness minutes.
Another area I've been working on lately is my sleep. I've just hit a five-day streak of getting 8-hours of sleep a night. It's been my goal to develop a good sleep schedule and get the right amount of shut-eye every night. So I feel like being more energized is also due to getting more sleep at night. I've had to bump back my bedtime an hour and a half most nights in order to get the sleep, but it's something I'm working on and I feel a lot better for it.
Mood-wise I've been doing better, but still a little bit anxious. The anxiety is mostly due right now to Fritzy being at his dad's. It's hard for me when he's not home. But, this is something I'm working on, one of the reasons I'm developing this routine with my eating and exercise, sleep and journaling so that I have something clear to focus on when he's not home.
But for right now things are going well and I'm meeting my goals. I can only keep striving to continually do that. To keep on moving forward, little step by little step.
Tuesday, August 12, 2014
In the few days surrounding my birthday and especially on my birthday, which was yesterday, I was feeling particularly depressed. I couldn't enjoy it at all, and I didn't feel well enough to do anything at all. It rained most of the morning, which was apt, but the day was pleasant enough and I should have been happy, but being bipolar I, sometimes I just can't enjoy anything no matter how pleasant it may be. My son got me a singing card and also sang to me, which was very amazing in all reality, and I got jewelry, which I didn't have the emotional capacity to love until this morning, and my sweet cousin got me a food scale which remotivated me this morning and I spent a good chunk of time playing with at four this morning when I got up and made expensive coffee and felt something like human emotion again. I did pay a price for being so unmotivated and depressed--despite medication, which is sad, sometimes--which was gaining a little weight and I think I was depressed to begin with because I hadn't lost a pound that I'd wanted to lose (or maybe not), so one would think gaining some weight would make me REALLY depressed, but oddly I actually felt better this morning than I had in a while. I felt a certain preparedness. I thought about the mistake that I had made in my behaviour and action this birthday week and considered that no amount of guilt could change that, nor would any amount of worry change what challenges were yet to come, but that I had the choice of what I could do next.
And I really think it doesn't matter so much how long it takes me to get to where I'm going as long as I still get there. I haven't given up yet, nor do I have any intentions of doing so just because of an imperfect week. One of the things I do realize I will have to deal with from time to time is depression, no matter how good my medication is or isn't, and if I have to take a couple of steps backwards because of that, I will always make up for it when I am feeling better.
Yet, I am always trying to learn something from my bouts of depression, in hopes that I can deal better with it the next time it comes around. Unfortunately, when it does come around, it's always so all encompassing and deep that I'm never able to manage it much or for very long until the mood itself swells and turns back around, but it's something I've been working on trying to recognize so at least I know when it's there. And, I suppose I'm not too concerned about having gained a little because I'm just relieved to be feeling better so soon (doubtless due to being on medication that does its best in these situations), that it was a short bit of madness, a small price paid, and I have a chance to make up the difference and make some progress again.
Saturday, August 09, 2014
I decided it was time to catch up with my New Year's Resolutions and see how I was doing. In January I had made a little document on my computer and saved a list of the things that I had intended to keep up with this year so I checked in to see how I was doing.
My new year's resolutions:
1) Track my calories every day.
2) Journal/Blog on a daily basis.
3) Exercise daily, even if it's only for ten minutes.
4) Practice Mindful Eating.
5) Make new and interesting positive memories with my son Fritzy.
6) Drink 8 Glasses of Water Daily.
7) Get up on time, Go to bed on time.
Everything on that list I had to renew my commitment on in the past couple of weeks, so for me the new year has really begun again recently, and I made some small changes to that list. Tracking my calories is an important one, I think, and I've made that a big part of my morning ritual. It's one of the first things I do when I get up in the morning, making a meal plan and tracking all the calories for the day.
Blogging on a daily basis. This one I modified to blogging three times a week. Every day is too much of a challenge. Although I do try to write in my journal every morning if I can. And again, even that goal I've only been able to keep up with recently.
Exercise daily, even if it's only for ten minutes. This is another important one. The UP24 helps me with this one. For the most part I've been able to keep up with this goal and recently I've even stepped it up to nine miles on the days I don't have my son.
Practice Mindful Eating. This one has been a big challenge. I've struggled with my eating over the past couple of months and am working hard to get back to a place of mindfulness and healthfulness. A reliable meal plan and practicing mindful eating will go a long way to get things back in gear.
Make positive memories with Fritzy. We're going to Disney World next month and that should make more than a few new and interesting positive memories! But, as far as on a daily basis, I think it's probably time to start getting more creative again with thinking of activities for the two of us.
Drink 8 Glasses of Water Daily. I'm on Day 12 of drinking my water and feeling significantly better for it. Definitely noticing a difference. Obviously not as far along as I should've been at this point, but at least still making the attempt and better late than never.
Get up on time, go to bed on time. I've been getting up actually BEFORE my alarm goes off and lately my UP has been sending me to bed early so I'm making my marks on this one. Not feeling particularly tired so I think I'm in the clear here.
Overall I feel like I made some pretty attainable goals for the year and with some effort I can continue to work on them. I'm making a point to continue to refresh my memory on this list every so often and to keep trying to improve.
Thursday, August 07, 2014
What I have learned over the past couple of weeks is just how important it is to persevere, and to stay positive and work on actively creating an atmosphere of success, even when not feeling all that successful. As I have been attempting to bounce back from a setback, it hasn't been easy, but I have stuck with it throughout all the bumps and I'm through my second week back in the fitness game and starting to make some real progress now. I've started to lose weight again and I've learned that what you expect to happen shapes your future. You need to act AS IF you have achieved your goal. ACT as if you are successful – not cocky or arrogant, but humble and self-assured. Talk, dress, and act like the kind of person who is successful and who YOU want to be, and you will BECOME that kind of person. This is the strategy that has begun to bear fruit for me. This is the strategy that has carried me through the past two weeks.
It has been a rocky two weeks with lots of challenges and I've felt pessimistic at times, but when I come back and think about this, what you expect to happen shapes your future, it makes a lot of sense to me. If you expect to fail, you will. And throughout the duration of July I had begun to get negative and had started expecting to fail. It was only when I started acting like I had already reached my goal weight that I started making real progress again, even if it wasn't a piece of cake making that progress. But I also learned another strategy for those off-days:
You can't let slip-ups that happened in the past effect your behaviour in the now. You have to be able to let go of your mistakes and accept that the situation is over, be able to forgive yourself and forgive the situation in order to move forward. It's really all about attitude. Your mind is very powerful. If you fill it with positive thoughts, you'll find that your life begins changing for the better.
Because it's always your choice. You can either get motivated and move yourself forward or you can choose to be miserable and remain in the same place. But where did doing nothing get us?
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