Monday, June 29, 2009

Back to backer

So now that we've got the unpleasantness and the "poor me"-ness out of the way...

I want to start exercising.

Well, not so much want, as need. I need to get in better physical shape. I almost (almost) bought running shoes this weekend, but I knew my husband would blow a fuse if I got running shoes since, well, I don't run. But I know I'm not really going to be able to start running until I have good shoes. Mostly because I'm ridiculously flat-footed so I need good, stabilizing shoes. Plus I have pretty persistent pain in my knees and back anyway and I definitely don't want to run in the wrong shoes and aggravate that!

So I'm going to start with walking. And I hope that if, over a period of time, I can prove to my husband that I'm serious about going on walks, he'll okay the purchase of running shoes. I didn't want to just GET them, and I couldn't check with him because he was at work, and they were EXPENSIVE (okay, well they were expensive for our budget, especially considering all the mostly necessary purchases we've made lately), and again, I don't run. It'd be like going out and buying a canoe! I don't canoe!

So I think I'm going to go on a walk tonight. I'd LOVE to be one of those people that gets up early and works out, and who knows, maybe someday I will be! But right now, I'm the one dragging myself, bleary-eyed and groaning, out of bed about half an hour before I need to be at work and getting there JUUUUST in time.

I think maybe I need a dog to take on walks.


So things really aren't getting a lot better on my front. I've been slacking and backsliding like crazy. Hopefully it ends today when I can grocery shop for good healthy foods and won't feel so much like I have to rely on the crummy-for-me food I have been eating.

Although, to my credit, most of the time I've been trying to eat "better" when I can't do low-glycemic. Trying not to just throw caution to the wind and eat whatever, but to eat smaller portions and pick the healthiest foods I can.

Also, the weigh-in? 171.8. Not what I was hoping for, but certainly nothing to be upset about.

What is disappointing? The slice of mochachino cake and six oreos I had with lunch. Tonight is going to be chicken, broccoli, corn on the cob, and maybe some whole wheat pasta. Good, healthy dinner! And then tomorrow I will have veggies so I can have veggies and hard boiled eggs and applesauce.

I've gotten off path a little, but I'm not going to let that throw me completely!

Friday, June 26, 2009


There's a lot of stuff inside this crazy noggin' of mine, but most of it is jumbled up all crazily.

I will just say - this past week I did not prepare myself properly for how busy I was going to be and my eating SUFFERED MIGHTILY for it. However, I'm going to hang myself from the tree of martyrdom just yet. I'm going to fess up. There's been ice cream. And cookies. And potato chips. And burritos. There's also been healthy foods that haven't been low-glycemic, like light vanilla yogurt, grape nuts, and whole wheat toast. What has been sorely lacking are my veggies. I didn't go to the Farmer's Market last week so I had no raw veggies that I could cut up and eat with breakfast. And all my spinach went bad. And I was on the moon, with Steve.

Excuses, excuses.

But, the way I see it, even the most healthy eater ever of all time, slips. They have a stressful week and they just want to be ear deep in a pint of ice cream. And slipping and having not the best week doesn't make me a failure or a bad person. It just makes me someone who slipped. Who has to work harder next week.

I've decided to make Saturday my weigh in day. And since I typically don't bring my computer home on the weekends, I'll have to see if I can steal Mike's to update. I chose Saturday because the "special event" that I shouldn't be losing weight for but am hoping to be slimmed down by is on Saturday. In fact, it's eight weeks from tomorrow. And I'm hoping that when I weigh in tomorrow I'll only show about 8 pounds left to lose.

Speaking of that special event - I received my bridesmaid dress on Wednesday. It's gorgeous. And it kinda fits. Well, actually to be honest I need to have it taken in a little, but that's always the case with any dress that I get, because I have to order a size (or so) larger because of my bust and then have it taken in at my waist. But this time I can tell it doesn't need taken in a whole lot. And I could hem and haw about the size and how I don't want to tell you because I'm embarassed, but I'm just going to put it out there. Hey, this blog is about honesty right? It's a size 16. Which is up from my size 14 wedding dress. And my size 12 bridesmaid's dress for a friend's wedding the year before. Which is way up from the size 8 I wore when I went to my very first high school prom in 1998.

Truth is, if you saw any of these pictures you probably wouldn't go "OH WOW SHE'S FAT!" In honesty, I usually have trouble convincing people I weigh as much as I do because I'm well proportioned (despite being short) and I carry my weight well. But all looks aside, they don't feel the horrible pain in my hip when I walk too long. They don't get the chest crushing difficulty to breathe just from climbing a flight of stairs. And, well, they just don't live in my body.

Now I know some people are out there going "Well, if you're that out of shape, you need to work out." I'm getting to that point. Slowly. But right now, I'm carrying enough extra weight that I really have a hard time doing any physical activity. I'm hoping to start some nice easy walks soon and hopefully once I've shed enough to stop my joints from feeling like they wanted to die/kill me, I'll add in some tougher exercises. I used to Tae-Bo like a pro and I'm looking forward to getting back into that. I've had a doctor tell me that the best thing I can do to help weightloss (aside from eating something, even if it's small, within 30 minutes of waking up) is to do exercises that really make me sweat. This is mostly because my metabolism has pretty much bottomed out from being hypothyroid. I'm medicated for it now, but my body has gotten used to this nice, slow, and easy metabolism.

So to sum it up: this week didn't go well for me, but I plan on doing better next week.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

I'm still here!

I bet you all probably thought I dropped off the face of the earth! Truth is, with Steel Magnolias and work things have just been kinda crazy these past few days. And sadly as a result my eating has suffered, and majorly. I blame it all on a lack of planning on my part. I knew I was going to be this busy but didn't take a single measure to ensure that I'd still have good healthy foods to eat. But that stops today. I'm going to have a good lunch, make a good dinner, and while I'm in the kitchen I'm going to go ahead and get some stuff prepared for the rest of the week.

Hope you're all doing well out there!

Friday, June 19, 2009


So lunch today wasn't so good. A local business is having customer appreciation day with free hot dogs, drinks, chips, etc.

But I think I showed restraint in that I only had one hot dog and one small bag of chips when normally it would have been at least 2, maybe 3 hot dogs, a couple of bags of chips, maybe 2 cans of pop.

And let's not even talk about the Krispy Kreme's they had there. I just stayed away from them all together. Doughnuts = definitely a trigger food.

I've realized I can do my trigger foods if I'm literally eating the last of whatever it is or if it's a drink there are no refills. Because I am cheap and lazy. I will not GO somewhere to buy another candy bar/ice cream cone/etc. I will not PAY for more coffee drink/milkshake/etc.

Which is why I didn't have cake last night. Because there was still half a cake left. No thanks. It's why I march past the doughnut case at Sheetz. Because it used to be when I got doughnuts from Sheetz it was 4 doughnuts and big container of chocolate milk.

Now if someone brought me A SINGLE doughnut, that'd be fine. I wouldn't have options for more. Well, I would, but then we go back to the cheap and lazy thing.

I'm considering lunch my treat food for the day and getting right back to it with a chef salad for dinner tonight.

Speaking of tonight - it's opening night for Steel Magnolias. So if you're reading this and you're local to me, come on out and see it! I play Shelby (the Julia Roberts character in the movie) and I gotta tell you, this play is a hoot! You'll laugh, you'll cry. So come out and support the arts in your area!

Short and not sweet

Huge victory for me.

Last night - I resisted CHOCOLATE CAKE.

Also, I weighed in this morning for a weight loss challenge I'm participating in elsewhere - 171.


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Oh boy

I think today has been the hardest day so far. I woke up this morning just not feeling well and really wanted to lazy out on low GI eating today. By the way, I definitely don't mean that as an insult to any person who "slips" in their chosen way of being healthy, whether that means exercise or healthy eating - I just know that when I do it, it's out of sheer laziness, so I call it lazy out.

So, another slightly embarrassing thing about me - I'm practically an old lady in my sleeping habits. I like to go to bed EARLY. We're talking 9:30/10:00. Well this whole week that's been the time I'm getting out of rehearsal so I have a 40 minute drive after that, then I need about another 45 minutes to unwind before I can go to sleep. This means I have not been getting NEARLY as much sleep as I comfortably need to function well. I like to get at least 8, preferably 9 hours of sleep a night. I blame it on my hypothyroidism.

So, I'm getting maybe 6-7 hours a night (if I'm lucky) and I'm SO exhausted in the mornings. Combine that with just generally not feeling very good this morning (slight yucky stomach) and I just thought, "Man, it'd be so much easier to go out to eat for breakfast and have eggs and toast and bacon and homefries," and then I thought "Man, it'd be even easier to just skip breakfast all together!"

But I didn't! I made my scrambled eggs with spinach, arugula, and portobella mushrooms and I added a little ham and some cheese. And I cut and peeled my cucumber (last one, uh oh!), and I had my big glass of milk.

And then lunch time came. And I went to a local restaurant here with my BFF and office mate Liz. She got a cheeseburger and fries. And I thought "Man does that sound good. And easy." But I got baked tilapia instead. The veggie choices weren't great (in hindsight I realize I should have also got a salad with my meal) so I had green beans and sweet potato casserole. I passed on the bread (which I love) and got water to drink instead of sweet tea (which I also love).

I hope I never give anyone the impression that this is totally a walk in the park for me, because it isn't. IT'S HARD. Every single morning when I wake up I have to rededicate myself to doing this. Because let me tell you what, I LOVE JUNK FOOD. I love FAST FOOD, I love sweets, carbs, pasta, potatoes, white bread, white rice with tons of butter and sugar on it. I don't think these foods are awful and horrible and if you eat them ever ever you should be ashamed of yourself. I think they're like everything - fine in moderation. I just know myself. I know that I don't really know how to say no (wow a lot of no/know in that sentence) to those kinds of foods. They are trigger foods for me and if I start eating them, I won't stop. I'm looking forward to getting to a place where I can have one slice of a pizza instead of the whole thing. Or a small piece of chocolate instead of a couple of candy bars. Where I can start eating fast food again occasionally as a treat without it overtaking everything I've accomplished.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


So, I've talked a little bit about my weight, and what I'm doing, so I figure it's about time for one about my goals!

I mentioned in the first post that according to BMI 145 is the most I can weigh and have a "healthy" BMI. Well, BMI is kinda crap. I'm the first to admit it. But, I have weighed 145 before and it was a good weight for me - I felt incredible at 145 so I'd really like to get that back. From there I guess I'll see if I feel like I need to lose anymore, but I'm really not sure.

And of course, there are short term goals and long term goals.

Obviously my longest of the long term goals is to get to and maintain a healthy weight. Now I've assigned 145 arbitrarily - simply because I've been there before and it's classified as healthy by BMI. Could I ultimately end up weighing more than this? Sure. Could I also end up getting to this number and wanting to lose another 5 pounds? Absolutely. Ultimately, I just want to be healthy and for me, part of that is getting rid of this extra weight.

My shortest of the short term goals is a little embarassing. I'm afraid that I've gained so much weight in 4 years (about 25 lbs.) that my wedding/engagement ring no longer fit! I'm wearing a fake set right now, simply because I can get it on. Hopefully it won't take TOO much weight lost before my rings start to fit again!

My next short term goal is the one thing that they tell you to AVOID like the plague whenever you're trying to lose weight - a special event. My dear friend and college roommate Kat is getting married towards the end of August and I'd like to slim down a little for her wedding. It's about 10 weeks away and I'd absolutely love it if I could weigh 160 by then. That's a little over a pound a week to lose, which for someone with a normal metabolism would be easy peasy lemon squeezy, but for me is going to be VERY difficult.

It's going to require A LOT of discipline, which I honestly think I have been showing - even though I'm only on my fourth day. I've resisted pizza right in front of my face. I also resisted hot dogs at lunch today and the urge to lazy out and just make a PB&J. Instead I had a salad of field greens, spinach and arugula with some chopped ham and ginger mango salad dressing and a "ham roll up" - a thick slice of ham with mustard and a dill pickle and for my low-glycemic starch, some grapes.

Most of all, since I'm in my final week of rehearsals for Steel Magnolias, I've been doing dinner on the run every night. I've been getting salads from Sheetz, which means I have resisted burgers, fries, pretzels, macaroni and cheese, and most of all, the huge doughnut display. I have, however, had a mocha iced coffee drink from 7-11 two days running as my "treat food". But I'm realizing now that the sugar and caffeine just make me feel like crud, so that's gotta stop.

I know myself, I know my negative attitudes and my food behaviors. If I would have had a PB&J for lunch today I would have ended up saying "Well, I've already messed up today, might as well have something bad for dinner," which would have led to me saying tomorrow "Well, I messed up so bad yesterday, may as well have doughnuts for breakfast!" And that slippery slope would just continue. I'm not saying that I'm never going to have doughnuts or PB&J or any "bad" food ever again - I just know that I've got to myself firmly into this way of eating before I allow myself a treat or it will backfire and blow up on me.

But the best part is - even though I'm eating basically the same food everyday, I'm not bored with it. Mostly because it TASTES SO GOOD. Like my breakfast this morning. A two egg omelette with spinach, arugula, portobella mushrooms, and a little bit of cheese, one small cucumber and a nice, big, COLD glass of milk. DELISH.

For now though, I'm off to finish fundraiser prep at work and maybe grab a little square of dark chocolate (low-glycemic with a glycemic index of just 23).

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Let's get this party started!

Now that we've got all of that "Hi my name is Traci and I'm overweight" stuff out of the way, let's get down to the nitty gritty.

I've always wanted to lose weight.

Ask my husband, I'm sure he'll tell you I've been on countless "diets" - most of which, according to him, only last a day. And sadly he's right. I'll do well for a day, then somewhere in that second day the urge for a candy bar or ice cream or something "bad" rises, I give in, then go "WELL I SCREWED UP, MIGHT AS WELL JUST GIVE UP!"

Well, last Thursday at work I noticed that I was feeling REALLY exhausted after lunch - I've been having problems feeling exhausted lately anyway. So I did a quick google check, and most of what I was finding was pointing towards insulin resistance/sensitivity.

Now, I totally believe this (and panicked a little) because I have polycystic ovary syndrome, commonly known as PCOS, and one thing that's very common in PCOS is insulin resistance. Basically, my body isn't using insulin the way it should and is causing my blood sugar to be high, which could lead to diabetes (my maternal grandfather had diabetes).

I had purchased The Complete Idiot's Guide to Glycemic Index Weight Loss a while ago (it ended up being another one of those things that I did for a day and then gave up) so I decided I would crack it open again. My doctor had recommended low glycemic eating to me about a year ago, and a lot of the women that I know with PCOS recommended it.

This time, instead of just opening the book to the back and getting the glycemic index and glycemic load for food and going, I actually sat down and read the book. It makes a lot of sense.

Glycemic index breaks down carbohydrates into three groups: low, medium, and high. Low-glycemic foods have a glycemic index of 55 or lower, medium is 56-69, and high is anything above 70.

Basically, when we eat high-glycemic foods (really starchy foods that contain enriched white flour, white potatoes, refined grain products) our blood sugar goes up and our insulin levels surge to deal with that. If you constantly eat high-glycemic foods or if you eat a lot in one sitting, your insulin levels increase beyond your body's need. Insulin is what causes your body to store fat. When blood sugar levels surge, insulin converts the excess sugar into fat. By eating low-glycemic food, the blood sugar is kept at a healthy level, which keeps insulin levels low, which stops the body from storing excess energy as fat. Instead the body uses stored fat as fuel and...TA DA! Weight loss!

I'm following the "Keep It Simple" method talked about in the book. Basically, with each meal I have 3-4 ounces of lean animal protein and two to three servings of vegetables. I also include one serving of low-glycemic fruit (most fruit is low-glycemic, watermelon is the exception at 72), dairy, or starches (yams, winter squash, whole wheat pasta al dente), and a little bit (maybe 10% of the total meal) is healthy fat. And they also recommend you have one small serving of a treat food per day. It can be high-glycemic, but the weight comes off faster if it's low. Unfortunately for me, I haven't food a "treat food" that isn't also a "trigger food" for me. I tend to overeat (or eat mindlessly) especially when sweets or starches are involved.

I started on Sunday morning, and I weighed in at 173.6. I'm not going to say it's easy. Because it's not. Especially for someone who is as lazy as me. I'm used to grabbing a yogurt or a thing of Pop-Tarts on my way out the door, having a cheeseburger and fries for lunch, and then half a large pizza for dinner. It's SUCH a change for me to FIX food, especially in the mornings. Sunday morning I had eggs with spinach, arugula, green onions, and green pepper and plain yogurt (which BTW, I think is GUH-ROSS). Monday I had an egg with spinach, arugula, and portobella mushrooms, plus some cottage cheese, celery sticks, half a cucumber and applesauce. This morning I had leftover steak, cucumbers, green peppers, and grapes. Talk about a change!

Also, I had a huge victory last night. My husband and his brother got pizza - one of my favorites, and I didn't have any. I was still full from the chef salad I had earlier.

I must say, I picked probably the worst week of my life to do this (I'm preparing for a fundraiser at work and I'm in tech week for a play I'm doing in Petersburg) and I'm still sticking to it. In fact, I'm getting ready to go to head home for lunch - salad with steak strips in it.

First post

Hello, and welcome.

I decided that I needed a more public place to talk about my weight loss. Mostly because I'm hoping I'll pick up a lot of readers and you guys will help keep me accountable!

The basics of the situation are:

My name is Traci
I am 26
At my height and weight I am almost obese

Now, I know some of you may know me in real life or have seen pictures of me and going "SAY WHAT?" but it's true. At 5'4" and 173.6 pounds, my BMI is 29.8.

30 and above is obese.

A healthy BMI is 18.5-24.9.

145 is the MOST I can weigh and fall into a healthy BMI.

So why title the blog "Nearing my goals" if I'm obviously so far away? Because I'm already on my way. I'm approaching the drop off, where things are going to change.