Monday, February 15, 2016

Monday Fill-In: Food, Fitness, Fives

I'm starting to feel like I'm getting in a groove with my eat regular food, just cut back plan. I had about three days where I was hungry quite a bit, but now that's gone and I'm feeling hungry at appropriate times. It's definitely not deprivation dieting as I've been eating all the things I love.  You saw the Superbowl food and this was Friday night dinner: homemade tomato soup and a grilled Pimento Cheese sandwich. Comfort food at it's best to ward off the insane cold snap we had for three days.

One of this blog's readers emailed and asked me to clarify what "less" is for me.  Here was my thought process for this meal: I could either have less soup and full sandwich or I could have more soup and half sandwich, but I couldn't have more of both. It ended up being the perfect amount of food and I wasn't hungry when I finished this.

It's an awareness of how AND how much I'm eating more than anything.  Another example is that Pimento Cheese.  As I commented to Shelley, I love that stuff so much I could literally eat it by the spoonful - as in, put a spoon in it, dig some out, eat off spoon.  But with my new awareness the thought process goes something like: "I want Pimento Cheese.  OK, how can I work that into my food today?  Oh, I could have a grilled cheese sandwich and soup tonight. Really and truly it seems that my mind moving towards knowing the food is going to be there another time so I'm not tempted to just eat and eat. If I really think I'm craving something, I figure out where to put it within reason.

It's weird but I feel fuller and more satisfied than at any time when I've dieted and forbidden various things. I'm no Oprah eating bread every day but that's only because I don't necessarily want it every day.

The one thing I did decide to cut out for the most part is alcohol. That actually was only a reduction of about 2 days as usually I would have a cocktail both Friday and Saturday night, plus maybe a glass of wine one weekday.  So this past week I was tee-totaling Monday-Friday, drank on Saturday and got right back to no drinking on Sunday.

Whatever the groove is, I'll take it as I am already feeling so much better physically, which is one of my main goals!

Winter workouts can be really tough for me.  First of all, I'm not super motivated because 1.  It's frigging cold, and 2. Except on weekends, it's dark for the entire workout, and 3. Once we start getting a lot of ice and snow and the roads narrow, I'm stuck on the treadmill.

Really, what I need (in both food and exercise) is variety and I found something the other day that made all the difference for me over this last week.  On a Saturday morning during the blizzardy storm we were having, I ran on the treadmill.  After I finished, I wanted to calibrate it, so I started looking for instructions.While looking for those, I found a  notebook of workouts that I've made over the years and had completely forgotten about.  I took the notebook inside and looked through it and decided to incorporate a couple of them to give me a break from run, run, run on the treadmill, then run some more.

Some of the workouts are really old school - in fact the workout I did last Tuesday is a workout I had found and started doing before I was even a runner!  The date on the page proves it:

This workout "The Walk and Tone Plan" has you warm up and then walk for an allotted amount of time then stop and do a strengthening exercise:

In 2002 - pre treadmill days -  I would go to our high school track to do this. Now, except for the warmup and cooldown time, I run rather than walk the segments.  And if you look closely you can see years ago I made notes as to how long the segments added up to if you walked 3, 4, or 5 minutes. On the back side of this page, once you're back home, you pick up weights and do a couple upper body exercises.  When I go with 5 minute segments, I end up working out for about 50 minutes - perfect for my early mornings.

All in all, I just had a great workout week and that was with temperatures that never left the 20's and windchills below zero. I told Mr. Helen as the week went on I felt better and better and stronger and stronger.  This past Saturday it was 19 degrees when I went out for my run and I ran 5 miles.  Honestly, had the wind not picked up (our windchills went to 25 below!!!) I think I would have kept running, it was just that good.  Let's hope this exercise (not weather!) trend keeps up this week!

Conditions at my house on Sunday morning, thankfully my full rest day!

On Saturday morning, once my run was done and after I got cleaned up, it was time to get on the scale and see who got the $5 this week.  I gave Mr. Helen my camera to document it but told him not to tell me or say it out loud, my plan being to have the $5 be my motivation.  He asked me if I felt like I was going to win and I told him I honestly had no idea but the idea wasn't winning, it was staying motivated and feeling better.  I didn't feel particularly thinner, and I've had plenty of weeks where I've been angelic only to gain, but that I did feel SO MUCH BETTER physically and that in and of itself made the little things I had been doing worth it.

After a short tutorial on how the zero scale works, I closed my eyes and stepped on the scale and Mr. Helen said, "I'm looking for a 7 and another number plus the word loss or gain, right?" 


"Holy crap Helen.  Holy crap! You have to let me show you this."  

"NO! Did you take a picture? Do I get my $5?"

"Yes, but you have to let me show you this.  Just this once, please look. After this week, I'll just take the picture and won't tell you, I promise.  You need to look, even I can't believe this - you haven't even been dieting, you've been eating! Please look."

"Ok fine. But from now on you only get to say lost or gained and not tell me how much."

Holy crap, indeed.  I am honestly flabbergasted by this.  This is the most weight I have ever lost in one week, including pre-thyroid days, including crazy detox diets, including ever.  EVER.  I don't know what to make of it but hope that it means my metabolism is cooperating.  Hey, another pound and I've lost all the weight I gained in 2015!


  1. I loved reading this report! I am happy for you for finding what works for you that is awesome and the weight loss is great too. So happy for you.

  2. Well HELLO Helen!!! Love that you had such a fantastic weigh-in (and I love Mr. H's reaction!), but more importantly, I love how you are feeling so good about your food are getting what you want and still losing! Overall, you seem more content this winter; maybe not having to fight a stupid diet is helping you to deal with other things (ahem, snow and bitter cold). Whatever it is, I'm very glad that you're in a good place right now.

    1. I am better this winter, even with the cold, because we have not been buried under feets of snow. Hence why I could move to NC and live in 30 degrees - as long as it doesn't snow! And yes, my slow evolution to no dieting has given me a sense of peace about food which I'm sure translates to peace in other areas.

  3. Well the main words that caught my attention were "temperatures that never left the 20's." Eek. But then "holy crap" caught my attention. Those are the only words to say for such a great weight loss!!

  4. It has warmed up today from -3 this morning to 21 - woo hoo!! Seriously though we are going to warm back up to the 40's over the next few days and that is fine by me.

  5. Great post Helen!!! I'm yaying for ALMOST everything. NOT yaying for the freakin' temperature. UG

  6. Great post Helen. Congrats on your weight loss. It's been crazy cold here in NJ. I love the warmer weather

  7. Wow Helen! That was an amazing week for you! I hope it continues that way!

  8. Happy, happy post! I love it from start to end!

    What a great week you've had. I really need to steal this eat whatever I want but less and cut down a bit on the alcohol and like you just drink a glass on Saturday night.

    You go girl!

  9. What a wonderful post! You are in such a good place!!!!! Kudos to the awesome loss!!!!

  10. Now this is an amazing post! Good for you (and your money jar!)

  11. Now this is an amazing post! Good for you (and your money jar!)