Monday, November 30, 2009

Trending Downward

I've been keeping track of my weight since the end of our home remodel in July.  During our three month remodel from April to July, we ate out or got take out food almost everyday.  With no functioning kitchen, not even a sink or a garbage disposal, it was not easy to cook.  Eating out all the time was NOT good for the waistline!  There's been four times in my life when I hit the 129/130 pound threshold (I'm 5'3") and I've said, "that's it, time to eat less and exercise more".

The first time was at the end of my freshman year in college.  I gained the infamous "freshman 15".  Luckily, my summer job that summer was as a camp counselor for a Big Brother/Big Sister camp in SE Ohio.  I took kids out hiking every single day.  We would leave camp by 10 am and get back around 3pm.  I was very active, and not eating snacks all the time.  We only ate at meal times, either at camp or on the road during the hikes.  When summer was over, I lost more than 10 pounds. But it wasn't due to my own resolve.  It just happened because of my summer job.

The second time I hit the 130 lb mark was between 1995 and 1997.  Somewhere in there, being a newlywed, I ate too much.  Then I started going to grad school at night while working full time during the day in 1996.  I couldn't find time to exercise regularly.  That's besides the fact that I was not a regular exerciser until Memorial weekend, 1997.  We were at my in-law's house.  My FIL is a physician, and I was telling him about the aches and pains I was having with my shoulders and upper back.  He recommended that I get into a weight training routine to strengthen up those muscles.  At that time, we had a free gym at work, so I went.  Todd also went with me.  Since I was at the gym already, I started walking on the treadmill in addition to doing the weights.  Pretty soon, walking graduated to jogging.  After about a month, I suddenly started to notice that my body changed.  The fat/flabby parts were disappearing.  I was so buoyed by the experience and the results.  I watched what I ate more.  I lost about 12 lbs in four months.  I was back to my high school weight, and I felt great!  1997 was really a turning point in my life, where I started to exercise regularly and made it a 12-year habit so far.  Oh, after I lost the weight, I saw a photo of myself in 1995 when we moved into our house.  I was shocked at how much chubbier my face was!  At the time in 1995, I had no idea.

The third time I hit the 130 lb mark was in 2004.  I don't think I quite got to 130, I was maybe 127 lbs.  I re-committed myself to regular exercise and watching what I ate.  I lost weight and got down to 115 lbs this time.  This was the year I ran my fastest 5K race ever, at Father Joe's Thanksgiving Run.

At the end of our remodel in July this year, I hit the 129 lb mark again.  I was also 129 lbs at the end of June 2008.  I had made perfunctory attempts at losing weight back then, but just could not cut back on the eating.  I was still doing the emotional eating resulting from losing my mom to cancer in 2007.  I was not ready to lose the weight back in 2008.  After our remodel this year, I tried to eat less, and exercise more.  Then in early October, I started using The Daily Plate at to track everything I ate from Monday - Friday.  I gave myself a break on the weekends, but not free-reign to gorge.  I mixed up my workouts.  I did weights, I ran, I did exercise DVD's, I went back to the after-work gym class at work.  Miraculously, the pounds started coming off again.  I started to regain my confidence about being able to lose weight again.  For two years, I could not lose the weight due to the emotional issues with my mom's passing, and being on the medication Paxil for anxiety.  I am finally losing the weight that I've gained.


On July 17th I weighed 129 lbs. On Nov 18th I weighed 122 lbs. Since then I've traveled to San Francisco, and had Thanksgiving long weekend. I'm back up to 123.5 lbs, but will not lose heart and will continue to eat sensibly and exercise.

I know losing weight is hard.  And for some people (especially those of us who love food), it is a lifetime battle.  But it really gives your self-confidence a big boost when you start seeing the numbers get lower on the scale.  Not just because you weigh less, but because you know you can do it.  You are stronger, you are healthier, you have resolve.  You can do it.
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