Thursday, January 28, 2010

I am an Alfred Hitchcock Movie

Yep, I have vertigo.  :)  I have been dizzy since before my family went to Disney World, but last week I caved and went to the doctor about it. 

(After being naughty and looking on WebMD - I say naughty because you know how it is, you look up a symptom and suddenly you have some devastating disease when it's just a hang nail.)

Anyway, she sent me to an ear, nose and throat doc because my ears are getting progressively worse.  I saw him on Monday and he confirmed my WebMD diagnosis - vertigo.  People have thought for years I had something rattling loose in my head - now they are right. Yep, let the jokes begin.  If you don't know what vertigo is, it's basically there are some crystals that are supposed to even your keel, well they drop out of place and make you dizzy and nauseous.  (Actual medical explanation here.)

So tomorrow after weeks of being queasy every time I get up, lay down or turn my head too quickly, I am headed to the chiropractor to get my box of rocks right.  This should definitely make crunches a little less spiny.

Yours in health,

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I need to be busier

Anyone who knows me would think that statement was a bit insane.  I work too much as it is and volunteer when I can.  But what I really mean is, the busier I am, the less likely I am to eat junk.

In fact, if I play a day right, I barely have time to eat the healthier stuff I do bring.  As long as the stress doesn't go off the charts, I even forget the vending machines are there. 

Of course, the exception to the rule is when I am out and about being busy.  Then that drive through is far too convenient.  I plan to start packing protein bars again to address that.

I will however, never be one of those cute girls who says, "I forgot to eat all day!"  Honey, my thighs may let me get away with  missing a meal, but sooner or later the rest of me will catch on to the fact that food is missing.

Does anyone do that?  Have their healthier eating habits do better the busier you are?

Yours in health,

Monday, January 25, 2010

Wow, what a winter!

Just like everyone else, I went to bed last night with visions of about an inch of snow greeting me this morning - boy was that wrong!  But kind of funny.  I mean it has been one of those winters where it's always something. 

Luckily today I came prepared with healthy foods, so there is no excuse for being bad.  In fact, yesterday, I stocked up for a few days, so that if this loveliness happened again I was prepared.  So I am ready for whatever the weather throws me this week.

BTW - I have a new exercise ball that is getting blow up tonight and a new yoga mat. (Someone borrowed mine and it never came back.)  So, I am going to try some new moves.

Stay safe,

Saturday, January 23, 2010

I Miss my Red Jacket

I watched a guy running down the street this morning in 35 degree weather and felt a pang of jealousy.  I miss running.  I never thought I would say that, in fact when I started running I hated it.  It was hard, I couldn't breathe after a block and I would sweat like I was in a sauna.

Over time I embraced it because it was working.  Very little scorches calories like a run.  Five or six days a week I would tie my shoes, put on my head phones and scoot out the door.  A good walk to warm up and then go.  Most days it was just three or so miles, but I was up to running 6 or 7 miles on my long days before the doctor told me to stop. 

Running not only slimmed me down, but it freed me.  When you are concentrating on breathing and watching out for pot holes, it is terribly hard to worry about work or a relationship that is wonky.  Instead you become freer and when the endorphins kick in, you fly.  By the end you are drenched in sweat, breathing heavily and have a smile on your face.

On Saturdays I would get up extra early, run to get to work, do what I needed to do and then run to the Downtown Farmers Market and meet Lori and then run home.  It was cool most mornings, so I would wear my red jacket.

My red jacket was the first thing I ever bought in a size large.  It was fitted and slimming with white piping and when I would sweat, it would wick the water away.  It protected me from light rain and too much sun and was a constant companion one I bought it.  I had splurged and spent $30, it was a great investment.  Not only was it a tool for exercise, but it fed my sorely lacking self-esteem - I was wearing a size large!

The red jacket went missing in the fall of 2008.  It has become a symbol of everything that slowly fell apart that fall - knee injury, lung infection, cancer scare, weight gain.  The jacket was so important to me that when a guy I was dating finally called after three weeks of being MIA to break off our relationship and asked me if I wanted any of my stuff back, I only asked if he had my jacket.  He wasn't important, but the jacket and all it meant to me was.

I still get upset thinking about the red jacket.  It almost hurts sometimes.  Mainly because it symbolizes so much - a time when I put myself first, when I cared about me - and now, like the jacket, that has been lost and I am having trouble finding it again.

I need a new red jacket - a new way to put me first.  I am hoping blogging again and writing for Intuition will help me find it.

Yours in health,

Friday, January 22, 2010

Gratitude is in the Attitude

I openly admit I struggle with eating too much food.  I blog about it, I publicly speak about it, I own it.  But the one thing I forget is to be grateful.

Not grateful that I overeat, but that I have food. 

I look at the pictures from Haiti and I am humbled.  These people didn't have much before the earthquake and now they are suffering more than ever.  I look at the children standing and waiting for the school bus in my neighborhood in their tattered winter coats with no mittens and I wonder if their parents were able to feed them.

When I was growing up, we were poor.  Finishing everything on your plate was expected.  And the guilt inducing line "there are children starving in China" was frequently invoked until I learned to be a smarty and tell my mom to ship my leftovers to them then.

I am not rich now, but I do not miss meals because of being poor.  I am blessed by ample food, housing, warm clothes and employment.  So, even as I face down the seemingly insurmountable obstacle of my weight, I need to remember how good I have it.

With that said, there is something everyone (who can afford it) can do to make the situation in Haiti better - give money.  It can be as little as $5, but that money will be put in the hands of experts who can use it to feed, clothe, house and rebuild Haiti.  You should not give to just any charity that pops up.  Give only to those who are already established so that the money goes where it is supposed to and not to buy someone a new car.

Here is a link to the page the Des Moines Radio Group has set up to give directly to the Save the Children Fund

Also, tonight, one of the best men I have never met, has organized a telethon to reach an international audience to raise millions of dollars in aid.  George Clooney has put out a call to his friends and fellow entertainers to come answer phones, perform and speak to raise the money.  Eleven American television networks will air the telethon tonight which will feature Clooney, President Clinton, Wyclef Jean, Will Smith and others making the pitch while over 140 other celebrities will answer phones and take your donations.

So, take the lesson I have retaught myself - be grateful for what you have and work for what you want.

Yours in health,

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Well, isn't this ice?

This has definitely been a winter.  Today it's an ice storm that has thus far dropped almost half an inch of glossy junk.  It's a mix of ice and frigid water at the moment, but tonight it will freeze into a rink - something to look forward to. :)

Of course, bad weather days generally mean crappy food for me.  I was able to plan ahead a bit this time and my snacks are all healthy.  The upside to a day like this is that I am so busy, I don't have time to obsess over food, which is my main problem.

I am a food addict.  Even as my weight rose this time, I knew what the problem really was.  I love food.  When I am stressed, I love food that is bad for me, because it is comforting.  When I am happy, I want 'celebration' food.  When I am sad, I want sugar.  So, not only am I a food addict, but I am emotional eater.  I figure it's like any duel addiction, because each issue has its own solution.

I am taking each day as it comes and trying to figure out solutions for each moment that tests me.  But like I have said before - I would take almost any other addiction, because you can stop alcohol or drugs, but you need food to live. 

Here's to a snow day without a trip to the vending machine.

Yours in health,

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

And We're Off!

This last week has been a swirl of activity as we officially launched !ntuition Magazine.  First the issues hit the streets and then the Snow Party was Saturday.  It was a huge success with over 225 people there.  Thank you to everyone who came!  I am keeping it that generic because I was so busy, I didn't really get to see or talk to very many people.  Honestly I wasn't even sure how many came until I talked to some of the guests. :)

A BIG thanks to the Botanical Center for hosting, Christopher's Fine Jewelry for giving us the grand prize necklace and a special thanks to my friend Ric Kerr at Tasteful Dinners.  His homemade cookies, cocoa and lack of fear in roasting marshmallows inside a building made the treats a major highlight.

As to whether I ate any, yes, I tried a bite of each kind of cookie and had a s'more and cup of cocoa.  It was the first sugar feast I had had in two weeks.  I actually didn't eat it all because, though it tasted awesome, it was too much sugar for me.  That is a nice change of pace.

Changing my eating habits is beginning to show in how I feel.  In fact, I didn't sleep well last night, but I am doing o.k. this morning because I have filled up on veggies and lean proteins and those are pure energy.

I had better run now, but I promise I will not go so long without posting again.  Things are hopefully going to even out time wise and I hope that means more 'me' time.

Yours in health,

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Support - It's More than just a Sports Bra

While a great sports bra is imperative for any big woman starting to work out, there is something more important - people around you willing to help or at the very least, not get in the way.

When I dropped my weight last time my family struggled to understand and relate.  By the time I was at my lowest weight they were whispering about anorexia - 150 pounds at 5' 4" is not dangerously thin.

My co-workers had no intention of sabotaging me, but man they are all great bakers and cooks!

This time, something is in the air and I am about to benefit from it.  My mom and step-dad are working out.  My brothers and sister-in-law all have intentions to be healthier in 2010.  And more than half of my workplace is doing something to get in shape and/or be healthier.  Combine that with the unwavering support of my healthy-cooking roomie Lori and I think this will be easier.

Yet 'easy' is a relative word when it comes to losing substantial weight and being healthier.  Really I am hoping for 'consistent' and 'ongoing', because 'easy' is also a cookie.

Yours in health,

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Snow Party

We are having a kick-off party for the new Intuition Magazine!  We would love to have you at this FREE, family-friendly event!  It's fun outdoor activities, then inside for cookies, cocoa and s'mores (o.k., not healthy, but tasty) to unveil the magazine.

Please let me know if you can come!

Yours in health,

Monday, January 11, 2010

I've Been Playing a Game of Chicken

I am a chicken and I was waiting to see which would blink first - me or the street day for Intuition Magazine - funny how time doesn't move.  The magazine is on the street today and I am already getting feedback.  All positive, but most stunned.  No one can quite believe how honest I was or how far I have fallen.  I have spent a month mentally preparing and I still don't think it was enough.  But I will survive and thrive by being completely honest.

Now that the magazine is out there (I will have a list of locations for you later in the week), it's time to be honest every day.  Or at least as often as I can find 15-20 minutes to share my journey.

The last month has been spent on vacation at Disney World the most magical and calorie-laden place on earth; dealing with multiple snow storms (that's a real time suck in radio) and facing down a new injury to my knee.  It has all added up to not a micron of weight lost or a workout done.

Yet, today I sit here typing one week cookie free.  I have added vegetables and fruit back into my diet.  I am paying attention to fiber and water again.  I have set-up my workout area at home.  I am ready again.

Tonight will be my first modified workout ever.  I have done my therapy exercises, walked some and lifted a few hands weights since my surgery, but now I am again injured. 

Trying to keep up with my family's swift walking at Disney at done something to my knee again - yes, same knee - and it makes me sick.  By day three of our trip I was riding one of those motorized scooters, it was humiliating.  In my head I heard people saying, "Here is this morbidly obese woman riding a scooter, must be too lazy to walk."  In reality, yes a few people started, but nobody verbalized their thoughts.

Anyway, I think this injury is a stretched ACL.  My knee is moving side to side and something catches.  I have yet to go to the doctor, I keep thinking rest will make a difference and it does to some extent.  That's why I will be doing a modified workout regime.

I will be doing hand weights while sitting down and work my core on my back.  I will give it another couple of weeks and if my knee isn't better, so I can walk or stationary bike, I will go to a doc.

Well, that's a lot to share in one post, hope I didn't overwhelm you. :)

Yours in health,