Archive | June, 2011

My Weight Loss Wins! Beating cravings and losing weight

27 Jun

I realized that on Monday and Tuesday  I was almost up to that amount by mid afternoon! I was just feeling really hungry and eating more than I needed to for most meals. At lunch at work I ate extra sides and a doughnut and whatever else was on hand. I actually went up a pound by Thursday and was feeling pangs of guilt to accompany my pangs of hunger at night.

Why was I eating so much?? I realized that on Tuesday I hadn’t eaten much protein and had been loading up on carbs. I was feeling hungry all day…It came to me that night that this may be the issue. So on Wednesday I ate more protein and yet I still wanted to eat more and consumed well beyond my 1500 cal a day limit!  Things were not going  well!

Yesterday, I re read my blog from last week and realized that I hadn’t been doing what I had written about…mindful eating…I decided that  I would truly put it into action. I did and it worked! I was aware of how the food felt, tasted, smelled like and it had me eating slower and enjoying it more. I even midway eating, realized that I wasn’t hungry for everything I had on my plate so I divided the portion into two and put it away for later. It also beat out the crazy cravings I was having on Saturday. Saturday I was having insane cravings which I have not had to deal with for a very long time! I think the subliminal tracks were helping me with this.  But Saturday was something else! I wanted to eat all day! Since I was up a pound in weight, I refused myself to give in to the cravings. I tried to sit with the feeling I was having that was making me want to eat every hour. I was feeling a sense of anxiousness. I have been feeling that for a couple of weeks now with the ringworm and cleaning, the allergy to the treatment and other things one generally has to worry about. I feel my stress in my chest, a tightness as well as a restlessness in my stomach. I think I wanted to ease this with food. So I sat with the feeling instead and made myself a tea and worked on relaxing by listening to music, breathing deeply and even watching a funny movie. I didn’t give in!! I had even stayed up til 4am and still didn’t give in to my cravings! This is something that happens once a decade I think! But this time there was full awareness to the situation and  the feelings I was having, and  I was able to beat out emotional eating.

The following day I woke up and weighed myself and there was no change in weight…What??!! After all that hard work of resisting dammit??  I looked at my chart of wins…what is going on here!? I walked for 7hrs this week in monsoon weather! I even did a Zumba class online on Sat! I corrected my eating on Friday and didn’t give in at all! So why was I still up in weight?

Feeling grumpy I decided that I would focus on the mindful eating and just enjoy my day, go for a long walk and stick to my action plan and see what would happen. I’m being  tested, is what was in the back of my mind. So I will pass it!

I took Minu for a 2hr walk, I made a plan for my meals and stuck to it, I happened to not have cravings and the mindful eating even helped me to eat less than I planned. Last night my appetite was calling but I resisted and focused on doing other things.

And my win is…I lost 2kilos!!  I didn’t only maintain but I actually lost two kilos from what I was weighing on Thursday! I am thinking that maybe I was weighing high early in the week but either retaining water or not getting enough sleep but  I was just hoping to get down a kilo and and be ok with maintaining…but I worked hard, stuck to my plan and goals and passed the test! WOOHOO!!

The biggest win is this, I didn’t give in to emotional eating. That is and has been the absolute hardest thing. I remember watching an Oprah show with Winona  Judd. She was talking about wanting to lose weight and the battle she had with cravings at night. She had compared it to being harder than quitting smoking, which she had done in the past. I remember very well relating to this and thinking it was pretty much impossible to not give in to those nightly urges. That is when I have had all my cravings. I would sit in front of the television and eat a half day worth of calories in one sitting.  It was such a habit for me and I would make up for it by hardly eating during the day. Not the way to eat or live by the way!
I have been lucky to not have had the cravings I used to have for the last couple of months. So trying to beat them was not an issue until Saturday hit. I surprised myself and realized that all that I have put into play in changing my lifestyle is truly working. I am getting control around food! I am starting to resist emotional eating by sitting with the emotion instead. I am mindfully eating and getting the most satisfaction from my meals and not wanting to overeat or eat the wrong foods.

So it’s time to celebrate…with some chocolate and fried chicken…KIDDING!!  I will take myself for a pedicure on Sat, meet for a lovely dinner with friends and get social because I have been a bit of a homebody lately!

It already feels like a celebration just knowing that I am closer to my ultimate goal of being in control and enjoying the process getting there!

Weight loss! The Bait of Baked Goods

19 Jun

As you know, I am on a mission for weight loss but not so much in the form of a diet or restrictions but just a healthier lifestyle and more control around food.  Although there are some things I simply had to cut only because I cannot control myself to eat just a portion of it, or even two…that would be pasta! I adore pesto pasta with parmesan cheese. I will make a pot of it and put the rest in the fridge and find myself going back for more several times. I know I could just make one portion to eat and have no leftovers but I don’t. I have just decided to go without and put pesto and parmesan on others things like omelets and stir fried mushrooms. That truly satisfies and keeps my calories down by not having the pasta. Bread was another culprit. I adore bread! I like it plain, toasted, whatever the form, it appeases me. But I have found that buying the right bread is helpful to not crave more and overdo it. I am a fan of tomato sandwiches in the summer and they must have toasted grain bread. So I allow myself this for lunch or dinner and find that I am not over doing it.  However, I have run into a little glitch…getting just that bread at the bakery when I go there.  Two weeks ago I went to get the bread but the friendly ladies at the shop wanted me to try their samples, which I did and controlled myself doing so. But then they were saying,  ‘buy this and buy that and this is new and this is wonderful!’  Not wanting to make them feel bad, I bought some other fruit bread and cranberry sweet bread as well. Because I bought this, they added ‘service’ which means that I got two other mini bread treats. I left with a big bag of carbs and I knew the next time I would have to say no to all of this! I managed not to pig out on it as all of sweet bread treats would have been scarfed down in the past. I managed a little control by substituting this bread for lunch and dinner…Not the best way!

I ran out of bread yesterday and had to go back to the bakery…I was thinking of switching bakeries but the others don’t have this delicious grain bread. So back I went. I just picked up 2 loaves I wanted, as to not  have to go back as often. But I had a pang of guilt, or was it??  I looked around and also picked up a loaf of the sweet bread and the cranberry bread. No one was coaxing me to. I did it partly to please them and gave myself permission as I could blame it on feeling guilty. At the counter she offered me more service and I took it. I left again with another big bag of baked goods.

I realized that awareness to what I was really doing is key. The first time at the bakery, I could have said ‘diet’, all Korean women understand this and would have sympathized and not pushed more bread on me…but I chose to fall ‘victim’ to the situation and not take control and allow myself the benefit of an ‘accidental’ situation. The second time I was there, no one was pushing me to buy anything and yet I claimed that guilt had me pick up two more loaves of bread.  The fact is that I simply allowed and created the second situation.

So now I am at home with the bread. I had some yesterday for lunch…quite a bit to be honest. I decided I would allow it for breakfast. I put the majority of it in the freezer as to not be tempted to eat too much of it. Still the fruit loaf is out and the cranberry bread. I am going to see what I can do, will do and if i can maintain control and eat like those people who are not obsessed about food. I will allow some in the mornings and that is that. I have said this on other occasions and often will finish the bread in a day. I guess this is another test for myself. But next time, I will not buy anything but the grain bread as to avoid the bait of baked goodness!

Losing weight and changing a life style takes more than just cutting out foods and still feeling in control of them when they are around. My goal is to feel controlled around any food at any time and just to naturally want to make the best healthy choice for me. I am working on this but still feel victim to wanting to binge.  I think that mindful eating is key. Making food an experience of the senses, which it really should be as it satisfies taste, smell, sight and touch.  I will put into practice what I had before and that is to eat more slowly and enjoy the food. Make it an experience in itself, not just something to do while I watch television or sit in front of my computer (which I do a lot of while Daniel is away).

I have read about Mindful eating and here is what it is all about:

1. Recognizing your body is hungry

2. Don’t wait til your famished

3.Choose food that will satisfy the body and mind

4.Eat at the table, sitting down

5.Eat without distractions

6.Appreciate the occasion

7. Eat what appeals to you first, even if you’re full you make it what you like best if you wait to eat it.

8. Savor the aromas and flavor of each food

9. Pause in the middle of eating for 2mins and estimate how much food it will take to satisfy you

10.Get up from the table as soon as you are satisfied

11. Take note of how you feel when you are finished eating…did you overeat, do you have guilt, are you satisfied,etc..

Choosing to eat “mind fully,” in other words, giving food and eating your full attention, will allow you to have optimal satisfaction and enjoyment without eating to excess.

So this is what I will put into effect this week. It makes sense to me and it should help me get through the bread without pigging out on it.

Bottom line, awareness is key for me for success with changing my lifestyle for a healthier one. If I had been aware of what was really going on in the bakery, I would have left with a lot less and taken responsibility for my choices.

Here’s to doing better!

Diet success! From rolls to rings! 9 kilos (20lbs) down!!!!!!

12 Jun

Wow!! I am certainly proud of myself for this!

I wasn’t expecting any loss this week because I have been so way off track with journaling, counting calories, or even regularly walking…due to the fact that my dog and I are infected with ringworm(not a worm but a very contagious fungus;called ringworm as for the circular red marks on the skin). Ring worm is highly contagious, and I think the little kitten Peanut I rescued, and had at my house before getting her adopted, is the culprit. Cats are often invisible carriers of this lovely and vicious fungus. As for Minu( my dog) and me, we are covered in lesions. I have about 15 and she has about 30.

NOT FUN!! The house has to be completely disinfected from drapes to drawers and even appliances, furniture or anything that comes into contact with me, animals and shedded fur (the spores can live off the body for 18 months!!!) It took my five days of doing laundry, vaccuming everyday, bleaching floors, washing and disinfecting clothes to get the house in a state that is recontamination-free(is that even a term??). I am on oral meds, using diluted bleach, vinegar, tea tree oil, nail polish, anti-fungal powder and anti-fungal soap on these lesions  as a means to not have them spread too much. I have to change my clothes several times a day and wash them everyday. I am told I am doing well, as many people can be covered with hundreds. My obsession with keeping clean is helping…I literally walk around with a tube on hand sanitizer in my pocket.

Minu got shaved, is having anti-fungus shampoo baths every second day, on meds, and i treat her lesions with powder, fungal cream, rubbing alcohol and vinegar.  She also has to wear a cone around her neck so she doesn’t lick her itchy sores…Ringworm is ITCHY!!

So what does any of this have to do with weight loss you ask??
A whole lot, as I found myself so busy cleaning that I wasn’t even thinking of food, not to mention, cleaning this much is a workout in itself! I have dropped 3lbs this week alone!  I did go for a long walk yesterday after going to the hospital, coming back, taking Minu to vet, picking up Minu at vet , and just general shopping had me walking 2hrs!

I do have to give myself credit, not only the ringworm, as before this, since my last post, have kept in check with my eating.I am surprising myself with how good I am being. I have next to no cravings. I’ve had an ice cream treat in my fridge for 3 wks and have had no desire to have it. I am careful of portions and was counting calories everyday up until the outbreak. So these habits have become so natural for me now, that I feel I am not resisting or fighting urges. WHAT A DIFFERENCE!!! I cannot remember if there was a time, even when I was thin in highschool, that I wasn’t obsessed with food and resisting and feeling guilty and just plain out of control.  I am a recovered bulimic and a binger for most of my 20s and 30s. So, to have control over it without feeling a struggle or resisting or cravings is in itself miraculous!!

So as part of the life coaching process, I need to celebrate my wins! Well it already feels like a celebration, despite my ugly fungus! I am fitting into clothes that I haven’t fit into in a long while, like 7 years! I am excited about seeing them on me and fitting well, I am excited by the number on the scale, and I writing this blog to celebrate this with all of you! But my coach tells me that I should do something more special, outside of weight related or food related areas…so my plan was to have a pedicure and buy myself some cute summer pants when I am fungus free!

In the meantime, I will be continuing my daily habits and keeping up with the incessant daily vaccuming, and washing floors and laundry. I will try to get back in the swing of things by taking more walks this week and writing my food/calorie journal and I will take the much needed time to relax…as the stress of all of this is not good.  ( I managed a 9 hrs sleep last night and a 2hr nap today!).

So as the title of this entry goes, rolls to rings…I am hoping for more rolls to go and the rings as well!

Will keep you all updated on the weight loss journey, it’s sure fun to share!

The Kitten Saga

6 Jun

As some of you know, I had rescued a kitten two weeks ago. She was left by her mother(cat) for some reason and was living in a garbage lot across from my apartment.  I heard her mewing and mewing and climbed the garbage hill to see if I could find her. I saw that people had left her milk and some food but I couldn’t see the kitten. I left her some tuna and went back the next day. There she was! She rubbed up against my hand and I could see that she was just a young thing..maybe 4wks old. She was covered in what looked like, black tar, and she was cold. I decided there and then that I couldn’t just leave her. I was thinking of dropping food off each day and making her a comfy shelter, but she was so young. So, after some persuasion by the Korean women who were feeding her, I took her. (Daniel is traveling, which made my decision easier as he is not a fan of cats). So, I walked her directly to the vet who refused to touch her. Yes, unfortunately, cats are not really seen as pets here and most are wild and live on the streets…ally cats for real! It’s a tough life but they look well fed for the most part. It’s survival of the fittest, and my little kitten wouldn’t have fared so well after being abandoned and being so young.

I brought her home and tried to get off the goop that matted her fur and stuck to her…not easy. The next day I went to a different vet and they said they would groom her but that they would have to put her asleep and she was too young, therefore, she’d have to wait 4 more wks. Not an option for this kitty. I decided to cover the tar on her fur with olive oil to soften it up and soon it was coming off in bits with the help of the kitty’s teeth and my manicure scissors.

I have a dog, as you know ; my sweet Minu. She was so curious about the kitten and was all stoked to play with her. The kitten warmed up to Minu and they played together very well. At first, I thought Minu might be too rough with her as she was many times her size, but this fearless kitty showed her who rules and soon was stalking Minu’s tail and my toes!

I posted on Animal Rescue Korea in the adoption section all about this sweet kitty. I honestly did not think that I would hear from anyone as there were so many kittens, dogs and other animals up for adoption already. I waited a week and honestly thought that maybe we could keep her. I know Daniel would have warmed up to her as he saw Minu and she play together, and who can resist a kitten?! But since he was away, he couldn’t experience this first hand, and was in no mood to give it some thought. I figured my best bet would be to find someone to foster her.

But low and behold, I got a response to my posting, from an American woman who was very interested in adopting her! What an incredible relief! She would adopt her and I would pay for her initial vaccines. Not a day later, I got 2 other responses from other foreigners who were interested in adopting her. I decided on Lucy, the first American woman who contacted me. We arranged to meet up the following wkd.

And so that day has come and Peanut(the name I chose for the kitty) was adopted today. I had a little cry after she left because she touched my heart and in two weeks grew a lot and is thriving. She is fearless, playful, tar-free, and just a loving little fur ball! I am so glad that I decided to go with my best judgement and my heart and rescue this sweet kitten. She may have survived but I couldn’t be sure(those nights were cold and she slept on the heating pad in the closet for the first 4 nights). I am so happy that she will be loved by Lucy who has also adopted another kitten yesterday. That means Peanut will have a lil feline friend.

Hoping all goes well! Fingers crossed, prayers said and putting out some wishes that the kittens get along well and that Peanut will have a permanent home. If all goes well, Lucy will keep her and take her back to America with her.

Here are some pics and videos of Peanut and Lucy in the last one when she came today to pick her up!

True Strength comes from within (Reaching my weight-loss goals!)

1 Jun

I am just feeling great today!  My journey with weightloss has had it’s starts and stops but for the most part the healthier living and making great choices are sticking. The weight is coming off…slower than I would like but steady enough. I felt looser in my pants yesterday…what a great feeling!

This is the time I was most worried about in keeping with my goals because my husband is traveling and I have a lot of time on my own. Usually in the past, I would be having myself a pig-out most nights and trying to make up for it in the daytime. Because I had time alone and wasn’t cooking for myself, I would just eat a lot of bread or pasta or cereal in huge quantities as soon as I got home from work(10pm) and then feel guilty until I went to bed. The next morning I would wake up with great intentions and then screw it all up again that night. This is the vicious circle I went through if I was alone with food for too long.

BUT, not this time!! I have been on my own for just shy of two weeks and I haven’t once gotten off track!! I have kept the structures, that were helping me,  into place and they are working!! (*excited squeal*)

I have been having some great sessions with my new coach who is helping me by keeping me accountable. I have been keeping a food/calorie journal, I’ve been tracking my positive actions, and still listening to the subliminal tracks. All of it is working! My eating is right on track.  My exercise is lacking a bit though. It is getting hot here and walking Minu during the day is too hot for her…so I’ve been going at night but it limits where I can walk safely. I also accessed some free Zumba classes online and they look fun…will give it a try today since it’s raining on and off.

Part of the reason for not exercising so much is also from the fact that I rescued a kitty(4wks) a week ago and having a dog and a kitten keeps me BUSY! Training her and making sure they play safely and just feeling out a new little life in our home has thrown me way off. Things have calmed down and now they play well together and I am feeling myself more comfortable with the changes.  So back on track I go!

The reason for getting another coach to help me keep on track was specifically for this time when I am alone with my cravings and bad habits. I wanted to secure a support that would keep me focused on my goals and keep me from temptations. This time alone is a test for myself and knowing it was coming, had me anticipating how hard it would be.

But here is the thing…I am not having cravings, or pig-outs and I am so focused. It makes me think that I have had some good actions in place for enough time now, that they feel like good habits. Suddenly the difficulty I was worried about, is not there at all.

And so, True strength does come from within…along with some well rooted habits I’ve put in place and some support from my coach! I am feeling so strong and determined and proud of myself for passing this test. It’s a true testament of my own strength of commitment to myself and making the choices that will keep living my truth.

By the way, here’s some pics of the kitten I rescued. She’s looking for a new home with a loving owner. If anyone is interested, please contact me.

UPDATE: The kitten has found a loving home with an American teacher here in Korea! Thrilled!