Archive for June, 2007

27
Jun
07

Sleepless in…

If you ever want to meet a night owl, knock on my door at 2:00, 3:00 or 4:00 am and you are likely to find me awake. I used to be able to function on very little sleep but now, not getting enough sleep is kicking my ass—I am so tired all of the time. I also have the problem of waking up several times during the night…peeing is the main event on these occasions.  My doctor perscribed sleeping pills, but I’m apprehensive about taking them because I don’t want to get addicted. You always hear such horror stories about people getting adddicted to crap and it’s frightening. The few times I have taken them, either I wake up feeling seriously drugged or still tired. I’ve tried to get on a schedule, but that isn’t working and now that I am exercising I need more energy to sustain my workouts so that I can increase and expand my activities.  Sometimes for lunch I lock my door, turn everything off and take a nap because usually between 2:30 and 3:00 pm I find myself nodding off, I mean seriously nodding off; I have even just fallen asleep in my chair, it’s crazy.

This is one of the reasons I am practically comatose on the weekends; my body is tired and trying to catch up on sleep. I’ve started taking a multivitamin, hopefully that will help and I am going to try to go to sleep at the same time everynight for the next 30 days to see if I can form a sleep habit and I am going to leave the television in the “Off” position.

I think this is hampering my efforts to lose weight and if I am going to meet my goal, I have to fix this. If anyone has any suggestions, I welcome them.

26
Jun
07

Slow Down and Eat Less

Here is an excerpt from the book Mindless Eating by Brian Wansink, Ph.D.

We stop eating when our stomach is full, right? Wrong. Scientist don’t know exactly what makes us feel full. It seems to be a combination of things, how much we chew, how much we taste, how much we swallow, how much we think about the food and how long we have been eating.

What does seem to be the case is that the faster we wolf down our food, the more we eat because this combination of cues doesn’t get the chance to tell us we’re no longer hungry. Many research studies show that it takes up to 20 minutes for our body and brain to signal satiation, so that we realize we are full. Here’s the problem. We Americans start, finish and clear the table for many of our meals in less than 20 minutes. Our meals are remarkably short. Take lunch, for example. Drs. Rick Bell and Patti Pliner found that if we’re eating lunch alone, we spend only 11 minutes eating  if we’re at a fastfood resturant, 13 minutes at a workplace cafeteria, and 28 minutes at a moderately priced restaurant. If we’re eating with three other people, we tend to eat about twice as long, but that’s still a speedy lunch.

Most of us actually decide how much to eat before we put any food into our mouths. We eyeball how much we think we want, dish it out, and then eat until it’s gone. That is, after we say, “I want two scoops of ice cream” or “half a bowl of soup,” we rely on that visual cue—the empty ice cream bowl or the half-empty soup bowl—to tell us we’re through.

Think of a jogger. If she decides to jog on a treadmill until she’s tired, she constantly has to ask herself, “Am I tired yet, am I tired yet, am I tired yet?” But if she says, “I’m going to jog down to the school and back,” she doesn’t have to constantly monitor how tired she is. She sets the target, and jogs until she’s done.

Our stomach has three settings:

  1. Starving
  2. I’m Full but I can eat more
  3. I’m Stuffed

We need to find a happy medium between the hunger headache and the stuffed sow feeling we get when we’ve eaten way too much food. Don’t eat until the bowl is empty, listen to your body and stop when you are full and satisfied. We need to be better stewards of our bodies and really listen to it. One of the first things I started doing was to really chew my food, I mean really chew it. Not one to five chews then swallow; really savor the flavor, think about what you’re eating and not what you need to do next. Also, time yourself and see how fast you finish a meal. I guarantee you will be quite surprised.

Bon appétit!

21
Jun
07

Experiencing the Joy of Food

Over the past 5 years I have learned to eat well. I have always loved fruits and vegetables, but now I experiment more with different varieties of both as well as healthy grains. I eat five meals a day which is great because I never feel like I am starving myself for weight loss. I have learned to eat healthy snacks such as raw almonds, dried fruit, dried peas w/wasabi, wasa crackers, different lowfat cheeses, etc. and I keep a large bowl of fruit on my desk at work. So you see, I am working very hard to make sure I give myself the best possible chance to live and be healthy. However, portion control can be an issue, but I have learned to use smaller dishes, elegant place settings and other little things that trick the mind. I also noticed that at times I eat really fast and don’t get to experience the joy and euphoria that can be a part of a beautiful meal.

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I’m trying to look at food differently, to think of it as more than just sustenance. I want every meal to be a joyous experience. I want every meal to be as good as an orgasam. When I go to the Fresh Market or Whole Foods or Earth Fare or the Farmers Market all of my senses come alive with the beauty of the fruits and vegetables, the fish and chicken (I absolutely adore chicken—I know, you don’t have to say it) and I want to have that same feeling when I actually eat the food. I want to be more “in the moment” when I eat, more aware of simply chewing the food and more aware of the different textures of foods. I just want to experience the joy of the foods I eat and to stop taking it for granted.

19
Jun
07

Just Amazing

I exercised a lot as a young girl, so I know the benefits of exercise and the way endorphines make you feel. However, I forgot about how your body begins to change and how the way you feel about yourself instantly morphs into wanting to take care of the body you’re living in. This is the third week of my 5 Week Treadmill Challenge and I hit my goal of doing 25 minutes yesterday— I almost didn’t go to the gym at all; I was feeling cranky and a little depressed, but the fact that I feel better about myself propelled me forward. I refused to fall back into the same old pattern of just walking past the gym on my way to the car. It was hard not making an excuse to keep walking but, I don’t want to give up this feeling and I’m holding tight with everything i’ve got.  Continue reading ‘Just Amazing’

16
Jun
07

Lacing up your sneakers

I can’t wait for the day when I won’t have to turn my entire body left then right to lace up my sneakers. A time will come when I can bend over or pull my knee to my chest and just tie the damn things. But until then, I bought a pair of sneakers with Velcro…woo hoo!

12
Jun
07

In celebration of my first 20 minutes on the treadmill…

I give you Fantasia. Some people love her, some hate her, I happen to be one who adores her. She sang this song last night at the 2007 Tony Awards and whenever I hear this song it helps me in my conviction to lose this weight and believe once again in my beauty.

Continue reading ‘In celebration of my first 20 minutes on the treadmill…’

08
Jun
07

The Big Bad Diet Mafia

Let me preface this by saying, “Not all Diet Industry Organizations/Plan Creators are in it solely for the MONEY.” That being said, here we go.

We are so bombarded with weight loss gimmicks today that it can be very confusing. Sometimes it makes you feel stupid because you think, I couldn’t even follow that simple diet plan and forget about preparing the 20 receipes they throw in the back of the book. However, that is the gimmick, most of the commercial diets on the market today aren’t simple and set you up to fail. I cannot make the all too familiar claim that, “I have been on every diet in the book,” because I simply refuse to make someone else rich at my expense. Look, most of the time your self esteem is tied to body image and you want to believe that the next hot thing is going to be the “ONE” that works for you. It’s such a vulnerable time, you really don’t need the Diet Mafia promising to make you part of  “La Cosa Nostra” when they know that is never the real goal. 

Continue reading ‘The Big Bad Diet Mafia’