Today was a glorious, completely useless, fantastically unplanned day. So sweet. I will have to make up/pay for it tomorrow. 4 miles AND grocery store AND sorting through all the stuff that we moved to my dad’s when we staged the house for sale. wohoo! But that’s fine. Today….today has been lovely. Unproductive, but lovely. 😉 See ya’ll tomorrow, at the end of the 4.
Ok, so because sometimes you have to go running when you have the time AND energy, I headed out today around 12:45. Yes, in this heat. And whew! Please take some advice from me. Should you decide to run all the way down to Railroad Park as part of your journey, run down 14th (henceforth to be known as the “shadeless crucible of doom”) on the first leg. Also, try to avoid running passed the Google Street View car. I think I just made my debut today. Yup. All 200+ of me turning the corner at 6th Ave. A-yup. That’s me. Or will be once the data is all loaded.
Today I promise to go home and run. run run run. Also, I promise NOT to take the Zaxby’s a student, who is sitting just outside of my office, is eating for dinner. Of course, I could take it and that could be my motivation to start run . . . no no no, nothing good lies down that train of thought.
NPR has been doing a series on the Sounds of of the Season. I thought I would throw mine in the hat.
For most of June, J.D. and I had been talking around what we should try to do to get control of our weight. We had been successful, in a time before Bean, on Weight Watchers. And we considered going back to that. OKOK, J.D. considered going back to that. I really didn’t want to.
For the record, the WW program works. But I have done it, repeatedly. Obviously it isn’t going to work for me long-term. The first time I did WW, I was eleven. (Yes, eleven, so the Ginnifer Goodwin story wasn’t all that shocking to me.) I tried it again in graduate school and again in my late twenties. And despite following the program (the last time I was on for almost 2 years) and being every active, I have never gotten closer than 20lbs to my goal weight. The open boundaries of the program is a problem for a girl who can put down a pint of Ben and Jerry’s in a sitting. (What?!) Also, there isn’t anything new to help things along after you have been on program (in WW speak) for a long time, no Advanced WW if you will.
Regardless of my reasons, it all came down to the fact that I didn’t want to do that again. I needed something to force a change. I wanted to be excited about my prospects. And, let’s not beat around the bush here, I want to lose the weight.
In the midst of this, a newsletter from the Birmingham Blogging Academy showed up in my inbox. The funny thing is that I opened it because I thought it was about Kathryn Tucker Windham, and I was looking for inspiration for my work blog. (In my defense, the title of the newsletter was “The Greatest Story Teller in Alabama” and she had died a little over a week before.) But the newsletter turned out to be about The Jen West Quest.
I’m not going to say that I was immediately sold, but it is hard to argue with Jen’s success on the Carb Lover’s Diet. As I read though the posts, the actual CLD website FAQ and looked more closely at the plan itself, it seemed like a really good fit. It many ways, the plan is close to how we were eating anyway. The tweaks were familiar and (mostly) welcome. Many of the reasons behind the plan were sound and the wiggle room was straight forward, leaving room for a glass of wine, beer, and ice cream. The website filled in the gaps of information, like questions I had about my husband trying a 1200 calorie diet for a week. (The answer: most men should consume 300-400 more/day.) The diet also received a balanced review from WebMD. And best of all? It was planned out for me.
Again, I realize that some folks don’t want a plan, but I wanted the responsibility of meal planning off of my shoulders. First of all, I have a hard time finding time to do it. Second, I find the whole process so cumbersome that I have learned to loathe doing it. So here it was! This plan could be as tailored and fussy as I wanted it to be. AND if I didn’t want that, here was a weekly meal plan. Some where in the back of my mind a woman yelled, “HAVE AT IT ALREADY!”
I was sold.
The irony of yesterday’s post, in the wake of today’s weigh-in, is not lost on me. This morning’s number stands at 215.8lbs. That’s a 4.5lb gain. Not precisely the direction I wanted. It’s difficult to not be discouraged. But then, I know from experience that this process is frequently more of a cha cha than a flamenco. And so I suppose we have reached a time to put my effort where my mouth is, eh?
Forgive and move on. I think I’ll just hit restart on the plan. Perhaps now is a good time to talk about the diet itself?
Forgiveness is a funny thing. During an especially difficult year I went to a psychologist to try and deal with some things that were going on in my life. What happened that year is a topic for another post, but suffice it to say that it was a year of incredible loss. Think of a year just shy of Joan Didon’s The Year of Magical Thinking. I needed help. I drove myself to several appointments, always on icky rainy days (I swear I’m not making this up for dramatic flair), and always with the Wallflower’s album One Headlight playing. And while I didn’t really like him, because as my friend Corrine pointed out, I wanted him to already be caught up (yes, yes, we can all agree this was unfair of me) I must give him props for introducing an idea to me.
I don’t know if this is a basic starting point for a practicing psychiatrist/psychologist, but what the man said was that he was hearing a great deal of shoulds when I was talking. In the aftermath of that year I expected more from certain people in my life. I felt they should have done more. They should have acted differently. SHOULD HAVE KNOWN what I needed.
And when they didn’t….
“Be careful of the shoulds,” he said.
I was floored. I was angry and hurt and I had backed myself into this corner. And the only way out was to forgive people for not meeting my unspoken expectations. I had to find a way to forgive them for not being there for me in the wake of the worst year of my life. Forgive them for not being people they weren’t. Hope that they might do the same for me.
The struggle with being overweight is like that, you know. You get caught up in the expectations, those you lay out and those others push on you. The small ones get you, food = love. The big ones get you, love = food. The shoulds all catch up with you and you have to find a way to forgive others for falling short when, perhaps, you most need them not to. And then you have to forgive yourself. Learn to trust yourself again. And move on.
It’s never easy. But it’s the only way.
I would like to offer my condelences to the parents and loved ones of Amy Winehouse. As the mother of a
beautiful, independent and fantastic four year old, I imagine that the hardest lesson we parents learn is that the most awful monsters we try to protect them from are the ones they find inside themselves.
We wish you all the strength in the world.
Alice, JD, & Bean
I took this photo on a run three days ago. I am always taken by both the lingering damage, still evident from Katrina after all these years, and also by the ability if the pines to keep going after such winds and salt water incursion. Almost as if they just didn’t realize they were suppose to give up.
Tonight was my second run of the week. And wow, I don’t know if it was the humidity or just that it was the first time I’ve run at night in a really long time but that was a tough one. I’m usually a morning runner because I’m more of a morning person but I really didn’t realize how little energy I have at night in comparison.
The good news is that my speed was better than expected. Also, I recently bought some new running bras and let me tell you, after running in the same bras for an embarrassing amount of time (ahem, one was bought when I lived in Boston), running a shiney new comfy bra is GLORIOUS!!!