Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Does anybody really know what day it is?

I've lost track of where I'm supposed to be on the Whole 30, I think Day 10 maybe? But it doesn't matter because if you cheat, which I did, you're supposed to restart, which I'm not going to.

It's demoralizing, that's all. To go several days and then have to start back at Day 1 is demoralizing to me, and we can't have any of that. More specifically, I can't have any of that. I thrive off of results, accomplishments, things I can be proud of, and I don't typically respond well to punishment, guilt, beratement, etc. Who does, really? And feeling guilty or freaked out or scared about my weight problem has done about all it's ever going to do for me, believe me!

I'd be much better off, I think, focussing on the good things. Yes, I did cheat a little on Sunday night and quite a bit on Saturday night! The good thing is that I stayed on whole 30 the whole rest of the week. The other good thing is that I lost a pound this week. The other good thing is that Saturday marked the commencement of the dreaded "monthly visitor," which means that I should have been bloated, horribly cranky, tearful, and shoving junk in my face ALL week last week and into this week. Instead, I did not retain any water, my cravings were vastly reduced and (while intense) quickly satisfied, and I was a little grouchy Saturday (NOTHING like I usually am at that time). I could really go on and on about the benefits of eating Paleo / Primal / Whole 30 / Whatever you wanna call it. It's wonderful.

The off-roading is the tricky part. The cheating. I read the Whole 9 blog entry about it, and it's very sensible advice. It's not exactly right for me, though. They say in one of their many articles on the subject that the only good reason, and it is a good reason, to cheat is mental health. So, what is it exactly about a cheat that I need? I need a minute to not care. I don't want to pull out a flowchart, I don't want to have the gluten-free pizza, I don't want to ask the waiter what the ingredients of the brine were. I want to not care. Just for a minute. I TOTALLY agree with what they say about not scheduling cheats, and I TOTALLY agree with what they say about having a cheat 'item' or 'meal' and don't turn it into a whole cheat 'day.' Having said that, I will say that it's a slippery slope. An item can turn into a meal that can turn into a day that can turn into a lifestyle. I know that I am fighting, seriously fighting, to find a balance here. BUT, I don't think continuing to do "12 weeks challenges" or "Whole 30" or any other little chunks of time is really going to get me to nail that balance down. I eat a Paleo diet. All the time. Except sometimes I cheat. Hopefully not too often.

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 19: A Song From Your Favorite Album
"The Beast and Dragon, Adored" by Spoon (from Gimme Fiction)

Fucking brilliant song, brilliant album. It was my favorite album as soon as it came out in 2005, during what I consider the most visceral time of my life. Good music was better during that time. This one blew me away.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Still Alive on Day 5

Here I am. Day 5 of the Whole 30. Check.

It's going fine so far, but man am I ever tired today! I guess I'm always a little tired on Friday, but I started to feel sleepy on the way home from work yesterday, and then I slept in a little this morning due to my inability to be awakened. And now I'm just beat. I need my exercise back! I'm actually kind of jonesing to go back to fitwit. And I've always done my best at my workouts there, but I have a renewed spirit to actually really work and improve my performance. God, it just helps so much. More than anything, there's a scheduled time and place that I *have* to go. This past 2 weeks I've been dedicated to try and workout a lot, intentionally giving myself some extra rest days, but if left completely to my own devices I just don't get up and go. I'm going to the kettlebell class again tonight with one of the girls from fitwit. Then if the weather holds out I'm supposed to go on a long urban hike with my bff. We'll see how the rest of the weekend pans out. Also I had a slight headache on Wednesday that could have been from sugar withdrawal. It probably was. But it wasn't too bad.

Yesterday I wore a dress to work that I couldn't fit into earlier in the season. Hooray! I love little victories. Every pound that comes off is such a little gift to me. I love each and every one of them when they go. The shirt I'm wearing at work today was from last summer and it looks too big and kind of ridiculous on and I'm just workin' it. Also this week for some reason people decided to start noticing that I've been losing weight, and I've finally stopped trying to find a problem with that. It's great! I love it! It's weird that I had to lose 30 pounds first, but shit, I'll take it.

Also, I had a very psychological accomplishment recently... Finally, somehow, I seem to have internalized the concept of a "small cheat". I'm not great at it yet, but I'm getting much better. By "small cheat", I mean that just because I have pizza for lunch doesn't mean I have to have frito pie for dinner. It's not over if I slip, in other words. I always understood this on some level before, but it's always been a really slippery slope for me. It probably still is, but I've just felt more willing to return to my Paleo diet right after a slip or cheat now than I have (with whatever kind of diet) in the past.

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 20: A Song That You Listen to When You're Angry
"5 Years" by Bjork

Man, this song says it all. And so hugely empowering.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Two of thirty perhaps

I think there's a disconnect somewhere, really. I was SOOO hardcore during the 'food fight' at fitwit. It was good for me. My body fat was tested at the beginning and the end. It was just plain fact. There was no room for bullshit. And I'm so competitive! I wanted to WIN! I couldn't talk my way into or out of anything. I couldn't rationalize anything. It was just true, in black and white, if you give in to temptation as often as you'd like, you will not win. So I very, very rarely did. There were many times I REALLY wanted something, and I just didn't eat it. I kept telling myself, and others, "No! No! I have to be good until the end!"

Day 2 of the Whole 30 - check. Did very well today. I didn't get any exercise, mainly because I wanted to give Kevin a break from me running off somewhere all the time. But, I ate perfectly well. Meat, veggies, fruit.

How do I get back to that place? I did well today, and maybe I should just take it one day at a time, but I don't have the same clarity and motivation I had at that time. Maybe I should schedule another dunk in the body fat tank in, say, 3 months. Maybe there's something else, tangible, real that I could win. Not a long-term-far-away thing like reaching my goal weight in a year, and not something nebulous like 'lifelong health' either. Maybe I need to just place some damn bets.

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 21: A Song You Listen to When You're Happy
"Three Little Birds" by Bob Marley

There's a reggae show on the local college radio station on Sunday mornings. It always coincides with the happy vibe of my little family, the smell of coffee and bacon, and an easy feeling of not having to really be anywhere at any particular time. This is one of my favorites, and one of the happiest.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Whole 30 Redux

Good Lord, why did you make me so pathetic?

Why did you give me the strength of ten men unless faced with cheese dip? To which I give in every time like a mexican kitten?


So, week 5 of camp, I'm feeling good, strong, healthy, looking forward to the two-week break, but still planning to get some good fun activity in there just to make sure I keep my metabolism cranking. Then on Friday, my foot started hurting. I thought it might be plantar fasciitis (heel spurs), which sucked, but I iced it, massaged it, and carried on. Tuesday morning (after the holiday on the 4th), it was still hurting, but I went to fitwit anyway. Then it started really hurting. The thing is, with heel spurs, you usually are in agony when you first step out of bed, but after warming it up a little, you're good to go. In my case, it was much better after resting in the morning, but got worse as the day went on. I was icing, massaging, stretching, and taking advil. I had to skip fitwit on Tuesday and Thursday. I called my doctor, who didn't have time to see me, but she said it might be fractured so I might as well go to the ER anyway. They told me it wasn't broken, but I should stay off it and see a podiatrist. Great. I saw my regular doctor the next morning and she gave me similar advice, but a referral to a closer podiatrist. So then after I spent $100 on seeing doctors, it just magically got better and went away.

Of course it did.

But, in the mix there somewhere was a bit of a paleo meltdown. I slipped, fell, cheated, whatever you want to call it. It snowballed. I started exercising again last Wednesday with an off-week workout. Saturday morning I took a yoga class, and lastnight I went roller skating for the first time in I think about 20 years. (That was incredibly fun, by the way). But I just couldn't pull my diet together.

So, I'm heading down the path again today... wish me luck. I had an apple and almond butter for breakfast with some iced black coffee. I also ate about 8 strawberries this morning. For lunch I had a salad with ham / salami, marinated mushrooms, spring lettuces, and a little balsamic. I got hungry again shortly after and had 2 spoonfuls of almond butter and about 1/4 cup of dried papaya. I'm sure my carbs are way off the meter already, but this isn't about counting carbs, right? It's about following the Whole 30. I was super tempted to eat a Lara Bar, but no, no fake food either. Good for me. I have a big pork roast cooking in the slow cooker at home, which I will shred and serve with squash for dinner. It looks kind of good, but I have to say I've been fooled by pork roast many times. Actually this time I'm trying it with a half picnic. It turns out picnic means something totally different than eating your food on a blanket in the grass.

And tonight I'm going to work out at a kettlebell gym. If you haven't read this hilarious piece on kettlebells, you really need to. It makes me laugh out loud every time I read it. But anyway, some of the girls from fitwit are going, so I figure I'll try it out. My goal for this week is to get at least 3 great workouts, and to try to do something active every day.

I'm so mad at myself! I should be so much closer to my goals by now!

30 Day Song Challenge
Day 22: A Song That You Listen to When You're Sad
"Tamacun" by Rodrigo y Gabriela

Wow, this was a hard one for me. I don't usually go straight to music when I'm feeling sad, and I would have to say that it would depend on what I was sad about. I don't find it helpful to play funny or otherwise happy-making music when I'm sad because that's too much of a transition, too fast. The worst kind of sadness is silent despair. If the situation has gotten so bad that you're out of tears, then it's so hard to work through it. Or, if it hasn't come to tears yet, same thing. So, I guess the best thing for me is to work it up into something tangible, and hopefully redirect it somehow. When I listen to music like this, it tends to skew me emo - so passionate, but also wordless. It can help break down sadness into frustration and anger, so that I can at least work those parts out of the sadness, if they are in there. Plus the beat just gets me moving, and focused. You'd have to be dead to not want to move when you hear Rodrigo y Gabriela. I find anger and frustration easier to cope with than despair.

Friday, July 1, 2011

One Down, 29 to Go

Today was Day 1 of the Whole 30. I made it. No cheating. Here's hoping I can stick it out for a month. I totally rocked the 11 week thing we did at fitwit earlier this year, but when it was over I strayed. Obviously I stayed on the exercise, but the cheating snowballed. And there was really no need for it. It almost felt gratuitous at first, and the non-paleo stuff even sometimes made me feel sick. I slipped back and forth for a while and then this past week I decided to do the whole 30 because I got sick of it. Mainly, why would I be working out like a dog and not take care of my diet too? Why work out and let myself gain weight? Stupid.

The key to paleo success for me is to make something delicious all the time. Oh, and by the way, my team went out to eat at a mexican place and I still stuck to my whole 30, just eating fajita steak and veggies. This morning I drowned an apple in some almond butter. Then tonight I made this and it was soooooo amazingly good. I also made some radish and leek side and it tasted like ass. Oh well, live and learn. I gotta go pick up a bunch of fresh fruit tomorrow - it's crucial!

The 30 Day Song Challenge
Day 23: A Song That You Want Played at Your Wedding
Etta James - "At Last"

Oh no. No more weddings over here. One marriage is enough punishment for one lifetime. Do. Not. Get. Me. Started. But, for the sake of the challenge, I've channeled the 4-year-old version of myself (fresh from the Cinderella lie) and consulted her. This was her selection.