Fat as Hell…

and not going to take it anymore!

Pedometer Challenge: Day 3

This has been a long, long (long) day.

I’m sure we all have those days in which our jobs require far more from us than what was originally described when we went to the interview, and for me, today was definitely one of those days. Not only was the work day itself very hectic, but it also seemed to go on forever: I had extra meetings after the school day was over, as well as another function that kept me there until almost 8pm. Additionally, part of the evening involved me making various presentations to several large groups of people. Exhausting! But the worst part came after I was all finished giving my little schpeel.

Once my part of the dog and pony show was over, a few of my colleagues decided to introduce me to some of the people there. Fine. But during the midst of this conversation, one of the teachers started to tell people about how much weight I’d lost.

*cough*

Pardon me, but… (as the cool kids say) WTF??

When did my own personal struggle to not be like the woman from What’s Eating Gilbert Grape become public knowledge? And when did it suddenly become okay for *other* people to discuss my fatness and/or my recent reduction in fatness????

I know I must have just stood there looking ridiculous because well, I simply don’t tell people that I am trying to lose weight. Recently, a few people have noticed that I am getting a bit less rotund and have very carefully asked if I’ve been losing weight. To all of those inquiries I’ve very politely said yes and even told one person how much I’d managed to shed, but only after she backed me into a corner, shined a bright light in my eyes, donned her Russian accent and said “ve have vays of making you talk, dahlink!” (Or at least that’s how I choose to remember it).

Anyway, I think it’s pretty clear that word has spread.

Of course, I’m making light of the situation now, but in the moment it was so awkward. I just wanted to crawl under the table and hide for the rest of the evening.

I mean, obviously, I realize that the more weight I lose, the less able I will be to keep it a secret, but I guess I just wasn’t prepared for situations in which I would be *forced* to talk about it. I realize too that the woman who “outed” me, did so with absolutely no malice in her heart. In fact, she kept repeating one phrase over and over again: “We’re all very proud of her.”

*gulp*

They’re all very proud of me?

Who are they???

And now what happens if I let them down??????

Seriously, at this point, I totally started to freak out.

So… what did I do? Well, of course, I did what every rational, right minded, clear thinking individual would. I went over to the “buffet table” — the same buffet table that I’d successfully avoided all night long — and ate a piece of cake and drank a can of sugary soda. At this point, it is probably important to note that I *knew* in advance that there would be food at this event. So, like a good little fat fighter, I packed myself a sensible dinner. And, what’s more, I’d already eaten said sensible dinner. Which means that at the time of my emtional meltdown, (which could only be treated by cake, apparently), I’d already eaten and was, therefore, already full.

And you know what the worst part is?

I didn’t even like it. Seriously, I derived absolutely no pleasure from either of my high calorie “comfort foods.” In fact, the only thing I could think of the entire time I was eating (and drinking) them was that a) *they* are watching me right now and b) I am letting *them* down.

And here’s the thing… I *know* that these are the rantings of a mad woman. Believe me, I realize that these are seriously the kind of things that a crazy person does. Normal people do not have these kinds of twisted relationships with food. Nor do they spiral into bizarre bouts of mania when someone, ever so gently, forces themselves into their worlds.

*sigh*

Anyway, by the time I got home I was pooped. However, the situation turned from bad to worse when I checked the pedometer and realized that despite my busy day, I’d only taken 5800 steps. I’ll be honest, at first I just thought, “oh, fuck it.” But then I started to think about the challenge and the commitment I’d made to myself, not to mention the extra calories I’d managed to shovel into my mouth earlier in the evening, so I laced up my sneakers, fired up the old iPod and made my way around the .2 mile loop that goes around my house– over and over again until finally my pedometer gave me a number I could live with.

It’s funny, but I’ve read about people whose tendency it is to sabotage their own success… and tonight I’m left wondering if I’m one of those people. Was it the pressure of the evening that just got to me or am I the kind of person who secretly doesn’t believe that I have the right to be happy? I’m constantly telling myself that I am not an “emotional eater” and that I’m fat simply because I love food, but I’m not so sure that, after tonight, I can continue to go on believing my own bullshit.

The truth is, I don’t really understand what made me go apeshit tonight. I just know that despite the 10,000 steps forward that I may have taken today, it’s difficult to see anything more than the one GIANT step that I also took back.

April 22, 2008 Posted by | pedometer challenge | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Ready, Set… Walk!

Well… it’s the first “official” day of FatBridesMaid’s Pedometer Challenge, and I logged another (what is for me, anyway) big day. Most of my steps were had tackling the flowerbeds in my front yard as well as a 3.5 mile hike through a nearby nature trail that runs through a beautifully wooded nature preserve near my house. (The walk was absolutely gorgeous, and I have to say, I think that I saw more butterflies this afternoon alone than I have in my entire life).

I did my very best not to look at the pedometer during the day and to just go about my business, but it was so hard not to sneak a peek every once in awhile. Further, it’s absolutely amazing just how much motivation having that little bit of plastic magic around my waist afforded me. Even if I don’t *win* the challenge, I feel like I will have gained so much from having participated. For someone like me, who hates to exercise, little contests like this one really help to put the spring back in my step when I can feel myself dragging. I absolutely know, without a shadow of a doubt, that I moved my fat ass far more this weekend than I would have had I not decided to become a footstep beancounter.

That said, now that the weekend is over, I’m looking forward to seeing how many steps I naturally take during the average work day. My job involves both working at a desk *and* running around like a lunatic, so I’m interested to find out how that translates into actual movement. I think, having that kind of data will help me make smart choices about my evening exercise. Right now, I’m just sorta doing what I’ve always done because, frankly, I couldn’t come up with a better plan of action. I mean… what the hell do *I* know about exercise? I read a bit and try to tailor my plan of attack based on what I hope are sound practices, but mostly I’m just shooting in the dark. But now… armed with the knowledge of how many steps I’ve taken in a day, *hopefully* I’ll be able to be a bit more intentional about my evening exercise regiment — adding more cardio on days when I don’t walk nearly as much at work, and concentrating on strength training on those days when I keep the pedometer busy during the day — rather than just doing whatever I’d arbitrarily assigned myself at the beginning of he week.

That’s my theory anyway.

In the meantime, I’m going to *try* to log my steps every evening here with a picture just to prove that I’m not fibbing. And hopefully, by the time the three weeks are up, I’ll have made increased physical activity a *habit* that I can continue long after the challenge is over.

*fingers crossed*

April 20, 2008 Posted by | exercise, pedometer challenge | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Stepping to the Numbers

I’ve decided to participate in Fatbridemaid’s Pedometer Challenge mostly because it sounded like fun, but also because I got a pedometer for Christmas which has been collecting dust in the bottom of a drawer ever since. The challenge doesn’t officially start until tomorrow, but she’s counting steps before then just to get everybody all pumped up. That said, all week long, I’ve been trying to figure out my pedometer which, apparently, takes a phd to operate. Seriously, I may not be an official Mensa member, but I’m no slouch either and this little plastic gadget has me bested.

Luckily, I was talking to someone at work about it this week and on Friday she brought me another pedometer to borrow for awhile. Luckily, this one is fabulous. Easy, sturdy and, as far as I can tell, accurate. (I did some test walks to see if it measured the correct steps and it only missed once and only by one step). So now I get to play along! :)

To that end, today was a *big* walking day for me. My husband and I got up early this morning and headed downtown to our local farmer’s market. It was a gorgeous day with lots of sunshine. Warm and with just a taste of the hot and humid summer that we are no doubt in store for. It just so happened that there was also a classic car show set up across many city blocks near the market, so we also tooled up and down the promenade several times looking at the handy work of people who clearly dedicate much of their lives to restoring these vehicles.

Anyway, later, we walked the 1.5 mile “nature trail” near our house, but when we got back to the house I realized that it just wasn’t enough. I’d barely broken a sweat… as though *that* walk was just the warm up… so I headed out and kept walking until I’d put in *another* 3.5 miles.

Of course, now I’m sore and sleepy, but I also have to marvel (just a little) at how far I’ve come. Six months ago, I had to push and push myself to walk even a mile. And I hated every second of it. But tonight I wanted *more* exercise. I *needed* more. And, like icing on the proverbial cake, my additional jaunt this evening took me over the 10,000 step mark for the day.

12, 966 steps to be exact.

I mean, I have no idea how many steps other people are taking in a day, but to me this feels like it’s crazy good. In fact, I’m sure that I won’t get anywhere near this on most days… simply because, well, I don’t think I walk over 5 miles on an average day. But today I did. Go me!

~~~~~~~~~~

You know, all of this weight loss + exercise business is still pretty new to me.

I got to thinking the other day about how little I really know about how to eat and move my body in ways that are truly healthy. I’m a complete and utter novice at this and, frankly, I think I’m fumbling around in the dark most of the time. I read other blogs and I’m, literally, stunned by how together so many of you all seem. I read your food journals and the stories you share about your goals, plans and successes and it all leaves me hoping that *someday* I’ll be in that place too.

But I’m not there yet. I still find myself *wanting* the food I shouldn’t have or the kind of life where I can just sit on my butt and not worry about things like heart disease and cellulite. And, I don’t know, maybe it will never become second nature to me. Maybe I’ll always have to fight my first instincts. All I know for sure is that if I really am going to make the kind of changes to my life that are required for permanent weight loss then those changes have to be permanent too. I won’t magically wake up one day and not have to think about what I put in my body and how I treat it. I’ll always have to think about it. I’ll always be fighting this battle.

And let’s face it. That kind of sucks.

But the thing is, on nights like tonight when something inside me clicks and I find myself *wanting* to do the right thing. When I’m faced with a choice between living healthily and just living *and* the first one is actually preferable. Those are nights when I truly think that I just might be able to do this.

Of course, tomorrow I’ll probably eat something that will cause Paola to give me a virtual bollocking, but for tonight, I feel like I might actually be “getting there” — 12,966 steps at a time. :)

April 19, 2008 Posted by | exercise, motivation | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments