Thursday, January 29, 2009

weight loss update

I showed a 2.8 pound weight loss last Saturday when I weighed in at my weight watchers meeting! I wanted it to be more like five, but let's face it, those teenage days of dropping 5 pounds in one week are over. so hopefully this week I'll lose two more. I hope, I hope!
It is still hard for me to believe that eating more is actually going to help me lose weight. I know there are many days when I have eaten above and beyond 1600 calories, and that is probably why I have been maintaining as opposed to losing.
According to the metabolic test that I wrote about in my last post, I can eat between 1915 and 2488 calories to maintain my weight. That seems like quite a lot of calories, more than enough to keep me satisfied when I finally complete my total weight loss and get to the point of maintenance. Given my love of chocolate, something tells me I would be wise to count calories once I get to that point.

Friday, January 23, 2009

So you are never going to believe this...

but I have a high metabolism, as in VERY high. My body burns 1915 calories a day at rest. My Dr told me this after she said I was iron deficient and needed to start iron supplementation immediately. I told her I thought she was looking at the wrong chart. After confirming my birth date, she said no, it was all true. I was either eating way too much OR possibly not eating enough!
Wow! I thought, that means I can eat more! & that's precisely what I have been doing since then-hence the 4.6 pound weight gain...
Seriously though, my DR said this is probably why when I was eating 1400 calories a day for 2 weeks I didn't lose any weight. The body goes into starvation mode or some such, clinging to whatever fat it can. Sweet DR then told me I should be eating 1600 calories a day if I wanted to lose 1-2 pounds a week.
This was amazing news to me. After feeling extremely tired for the last few months as well as hitting a weight loss plateau for quite some time, I was starting to feel like I was getting old.
The funny thing is, I was never like that either, I was never one to "feel" old. I was always one of those people that has always believed you are as young as you feel, & I would set my mind to feeling young. I should have known something was wrong when my thinking started to change.

After this fast/high metabolism news I suddenly started to feel very hopeful. This is so cool I thought, I have a fast metabolism. I can lose weight. I was just tired from not having enough iron! I began to feel young again. At the age of 46 it was as if I was being reborn. Here I was thinking all this time, I'm getting old, my metabolism is slowing down, I don't have as much energy....blah, blah, blah, blah, blah! It turns out it was all rubbish!
And after just two weeks of taking my iron supplements, I have new found energy that I haven't seen in a while. This seems to be helping me with my cravings since I tend to crave food when I am tired.
So the good news is, there isn't a thing wrong with me. I'm not even "just getting old" anymore! In fact I am probably in better health now (other than this wicked cold I've got) then I have ever been.
Hopefully tomorrow I will see a change when I go to weigh in at Weight Watchers too!

two of my favorite people

Thursday, January 22, 2009

losing weight in 2009

I can't remember my last post on my weight loss/weight watchers debacle. I just got so sick of talking, writing, and thinking about it. If it weren't for my soul sister Quasi Mom I think I would have lost all inspiration to stay on course.By the way, if you want to follow an amazing weight loss story I highly recommend her blog. She doesn't write about it all the time, but she gives you plenty to ponder.
I have to say it felt good to take a break from it all in terms of the reportage, but I will tell you this, it didn't feel too good to get on the Weight Watchers scale last weekend and finding out I gained 4.6 pounds. Not like I was shattered or depressed, I was more like, OK, whatever.
I knew just getting back to my WW meeting was a triumph. I hadn't been to one in 4 weeks.

I think my biggest breakthrough other than getting back to my WW meetings was joining a gym 6 weeks ago. Not too long ago my friend Kitty from the fabulous site, New York Portraits commented about how she frequents a gym & how she feels the benefits of weight lifting. That kind of stuck in my brain because I used to lift weights at home & somehow got out of the habit of it about two years ago. Then, just before Christmas I got a coupon in the mail from my husbands gym. I could try it out for 6 weeks for only $39.00. Long story short, I'm a bit of a gym rat now. OK I'm exaggerating, but I do really like it. I like the smell of the rubber mats and the loud music and all the people politely exercising with one another. Well, some are more polite than others, but they are all very interesting characters nonetheless.
Initially I hated the mere thought of gyms. Why leave my nice cozy house I reasoned, I have my own weights and an exercise bike. Plus, I thought, who wants to hang out with all those sweaty people when you can be outside running around the neighborhood in the open air. Thankfully two things opened up my mind, I knew some added cardio would help my little upcoming ski trip, and I also knew my son would be home from school for two weeks & I would be able to take him with me, which is always fun.
Besides it really is a great place to people watch, sort of like when I used to live in Manhattan, all different types and personalities stuck together in one big room. It actually helps me to see there are others like myself struggling through 30 minutes on the elliptical machine or running for what seems like an eternity on the treadmill. This is a big revelation for someone who is very used to exercising alone.
Plus I do believe my weight gain would have been much more had I not been doing the extra exercise I found myself doing at the gym. The machines make it so easy to lift weights, you can't help but go for it.
Eventually I would like to start taking a few classes like yoga and maybe even spinning. I'll keep you posted.
& remember way back in November I told you about that metabolic test the DR made me take? Supposedly it would tell me exactly how many calories I should be consuming in order to lose weight. Well, I got the results back & you are going to laugh. Only, I don't have time to write about it now, but I promise I will write about it in the next 24 hours.

these flowers are for all my friends that stop by here to read my posts and give me encouragement. Thank you.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

"What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them, that the stale political arguments that have consumed us ...

for so long no longer apply."

excerpted from President Obama's speech.

Yesterday was an amazing day for America!
Two powerful themes as a result of the incredible history made yesterday are buzzing in my mind. Both are competing for my attention as I rethink and relive the incredible events that transpired in one short day. I want to say we as a nation should be proud of the fact that right now at this very moment the majority of us are looking to our president Barack Obama as a leader that speaks to us about being personally accountable for our actions and we are responding with a resounding, " Yes we will!" this positive attitude of the general population makes me proud to be an American.
From President Obama's Inauguration speech,

"...But those values upon which our success depends-honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism-these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history.
What is demanded, then, is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility-a recognition on the part of every American that we have duties to ourselves, our nation and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task."

Yes, all of the bad news is still around us. It's not going away overnight, we all know that. Yet our hope lies in a man who knows how to speak to America as well as the Americans who are responding positively to the difficult tasks at hand. Barack is reminding us that American history is filled with powerful examples of what our ancestors did to not only survive, but flourish. Like Obama said, it is important to remember what this country has already done..."what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage."

& the other equally important thing abuzz in my brain- for those of you who doubted things would change with our new president, you need only look at the person who is now residing at the White House to see the evidence of this other American dream realized. It gives me immeasurable joy knowing with complete certainty that young children of color who are alive this very day will see that, yes, people do change and yes, there is such a thing as hope and like Mr. Robert McDaniel who was quoted this morning in Newsday said, "We bleed red, we breathe air. We need to be one, maybe now there is a chance."
Amen I say to that Mr. McDaniel.

for a happy Obama music video, please go visit the danish poet here.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

American Prayer - Dave Stewart (Barack Obama Music Video)

if you were here earlier, my apologies for the false start! I don't know why my last video didn't work, but I found something better- It is another one that has been around awhile, but I thought it was quite beautiful. Let us celebrate this huge day for America!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Tips for an Exceptional, Superb and Powerful Life, continued...

15. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

16. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.

17. Don't compare your life with others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
18. Ladies- Go on and burn those 'special' scented candles, use the 600 thread count bed sheets, the good china and wear your fancy clothes now. Stop waiting for a special occasion. Every day is special.

19. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.

20. Frame every so- called disaster with these words: 'In five years, will this matter?'

21. Forgive everyone for everything. (I think this is a really great one!)

22. What other people think of you is none of your business. (This one is just as good as the last one.)

it snowed on Saturday.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

8. Clear clutter from your house, car, and desk and let new and flowing energy into your life.

9. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip, misuses of the past. Negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead, invest your energy in the positive present moment.

10. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are simply part of the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class...but the lessons you learn will last a lifetime.

11. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a layman, and dinner like a beggar.

12. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.

13. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.

14. Don't take yourself seriously. No one else does. ( I love this one.)

More to follow soon from "Tips for an exceptional, Superb and Powerful Life".

& just a photo from my Vermont trip. I can't believe it was two weeks ago already!
I wanted to show you this because I think it really captures the feel of what it was like being there.

please click on photo to enlarge for greater details.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

just a little video for you until my next post...

This was taken on the road while traveling home from Vermont on New Years Eve. There were mountains all around us, but the conditions were such that you could not see them. As we drove, I tried to find a local weather station on the radio, to no avail.
Hope you like it!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

for those of you with a little post holiday let down...

In case you haven't gotten this list in your email, I thought you might appreciate it. I love it. I think I may even have it framed and hung in my bathroom so it is the first thing I see everyday. I'll post a few each day, the list has 34 tips. if anyone knows who wrote this, let me know so that I may give them credit. Until then, thank you whoever you are!
It is called, Tips for an Exceptional, Superb, and Powerful Life...Enjoy!

1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day. And while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate antidepressant.

2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day. Buy a lock if you have to.

3. Always pray and make time to exercise.

4. Spend more time with people over the age of 70 and people under the age of six.

5. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat fewer foods that are manufactured.

6. Drink green tea and plenty of water. Eat broccoli, almonds and walnuts.

7. Try to make at least three people smile each day. (I love this one, it always make me happy when I do it)

Pretty good stuff eh?

To be continued...

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A word

In 2007 I chose the word strength. Nine days into that year my brother-in-law Paul died suddenly at the age of 43. It required a tremendous amount of strength to get through 2007. I don't believe my picking the word strength was a coincidence. Inexplicably simply thinking of the word "strength" helped me grieve Paul's death. I also began to notice that not only I, but many of Paul's family members stopped saying, have a good day to each other. It was as if we all knew that wasn't likely to happen while feeling heartbroken over so great a loss. Instead we would say to each other, I hope you find some peace today or, have a peaceful day. I remember my mother in law saying that to me one day, "try and have a peaceful day." I actually felt her thoughtful intention by her using the word peace and it helped me immensely. Words have great power. I believe we all have great responsibility when using them. We can hurt or heal every time we speak.
In 2008, I chose the word Peace. Peace became an anchor for me. When things got a little hairy, and boy did they ever, I would consciously put peace before every other thought as being the most important priority in my mind. Focusing on the word peace became a tool that allowed me to remember to do things that would bring me peace, like simple prayer and meditation or getting enough sleep and exercise or even just eating properly. Focusing on peace brought me a type of mindfulness that I found "strengthening". It's funny to me how things have a way of working out. Though I am adding a new word this year, strength and peace will always be a part of my inner vocabulary. I may not speak them much but I will continue to focus on them and remain mindful of them as they nurture my life.
This is the third year I am picking a word. This year I am a little late. I think my word had to find me and I am here to report that, yes, it did! I actually do not have much spiritual insight as to why I picked this word. It is such a practical word, but I definitely feel like it is a word that found me. Perhaps it is the angels again, doing what they do best, whispering in my ear hoping I might "get" something!

This year my word will be... O R G A N I S E

my baby angel may be a little blurry, but she is an angel nonetheless.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!

and a very belated merry Christmas, Kwanzaa, Boxing day & Happy Hannukah too! Sorry I haven't posted in so long but like everyone else I have been extremely busy. I just wanted to stop in & say hello while I continue to ponder what my new word for this year will be. For the past two years I've gone through a ritual of finding a word that serves as a sort of guide and anchor for the new year. I will post more on this when I figure out what my word will be. Though I feel it is important not to rush such matters, I hope I figure it out soon!
Below is a video so you can see what I have been up too...

I'm the person wearing the hood.