Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Doughnuts and noodles, back pain, Leslie, and me

I have this friend. Um, I really do have more than one friend, but right now, we're just talking about this one. She is pretty awesome. In the last several months, she has been working hard to change her habits and attitudes toward eating, exercising, and herself. And OMG, am I impressed! She, who was once snotty and hard to work with, is now one of the most positive people I know. Recently, she had some trouble at the airport. Not all that long ago, this would have been a MAJOR disruption to her happiness. Now, it's barely a blip - she mentions it, acknowledges the frustration, and then says, "Oh, well..." Wow. And her attitude toward diet and exercise should really qualify her for Super Woman status. I am completely in awe and incredibly proud of the work she's doing for her health. Now she'll live a nice long, healthy life so I can whine to her whenever I need to! If you didn't know that it's all about me by now, people, you should seriously have been paying better attention.

Anyway, because I like to just copy what other people do (increasing the all-about-me-ness), I'm trying to be just like her. I am struggling a bit here in the beginning. But I have signed up for SparkPeople - which I LOVE. I am tracking my food, exercising more than I was, and have started walking with an actual commitment to it. I feel better, not so much in the physical sense yet (I haven't actually lost much weight yet since I just started), but just because I have taken steps in the right direction. However...

...even with all of this good vibe energy, I have this problem. It's called Food. More specifically, my all-or-nothing-I-may-never-eat-again approach to it. I'm better. Really. Yesterday, for example, I refused a refill (a FREE refill) on my Diet Coke at lunch. Because I didn't need it. I can't even tell you how amazing it is to read that sentence and believe it. Right now, I have a Diet Coke sitting RIGHT NEXT TO ME on my desk. And it's unopened; I'm drinking flavored water. Seriously. But I still have issues. Issues with names like Mel-O-Cream Chocolate Long John. If you don't know Mel-O-Cream, that's because you've probably never lived in Springfield, Illinois. It's Springfield's version of Dunkin Donuts, but more homemadey. I visited my mom this weekend, who, after watching me struggle with food decisions all weekend, decided it would be a great idea to go pick up a dozen doughnuts for us all on Sunday morning. She left while the kids and I were still sleeping, so I didn't have a chance to beg her not to bring them back. She mentioned they were there and I thought "I can have one doughnut. It's not the best breakfast, but I'll eat well for lunch. It will be okay." And so I ate four of them. Yes. Four. As in three more than one. When I went to put them in my daily log, it made my stomach hurt to type it. I looked up the calories - over 1100 calories for my breakfast. My goal range for the day is 1200-1550. So that's bad. And combined with what I did on Saturday, that's REALLY bad.

We went to my grandma's for dinner on Saturday. Where she made all my favorites: barbecued chicken (I ate 1 leg without the skin, not bad), fresh green beans - with bacon (two big spoonfuls, no bacon), German potato salad (1 small scoop), and the "cherry" on top, chicken and noodles. Oh, when I die, I hope it's death by noodles. If I could wrap myself up in them, I would, except then I'd eat them, and be naked, and that would be bad. But you get my point. I love love LOVE them. Probably more than the Mel-O-Cream Chocolate Long John, if that's possible. And I'm not the only one. We fight over who gets the last of them. We gobble our servings so we can be first back for seconds (and thirds...). Yes, I ate THREE helpings. I knew it was wrong. I knew I should resist. I thought about it and tried, really TRIED not to, but the siren song of the Kluski egg noodle was too strong. I succumb. And apparently, relinquished any sense of will power I had been managing up to that point. Hence the three pieces of Angel Food Cake later that evening and the doughnut incident the next morning.

Even with that um, not-so-strong weekend, I'm not doing too badly. I'm making (most of the time) better decisions, and am least more conscious about what I eat. And there's the exercising! I'm walking, and liking it. I sent a daily 11am walking invite to a group of women I work with, and am excited about it. The heat right now is a bit of a bummer, but I think if I can find a conference room, we could just use my Leslie Sansone 1 mile DVD. Yesterday was Day 1 with Leslie, and she is so cute. Happy and perky, but not in that syrupy Denise Austin kind of way. Don't get me wrong, Denise is great. I'm just not as happy to be doing what she's doing as she is. Leslie is cool though. Very laid back in a, 'Hey, I'm walking, why don't you walk with me' kind of way that makes you feel like it's no big deal, it's just walking. And my favorite line from the DVD: "Woo! It's okay to say 'Woo' sometimes!" That just makes me happy for reasons I don't understand. My only issue is that I have developed severe lower back pain. I'm sitting here now with a WellPatch strapped to my back and Alleve coursing through my veins. The great thing about it (yes, great. about back pain. stick with me.) is that it doesn't matter. More than wallowing and whining about the pain (although there is still plenty of wallowing and whining, trust me), I'm kind of pissed off. I want to walk. Did you catch that? I WANT to walk. In the 90 degree, 90 percent humidity weather. I brought my shoes and t-shirt to work today, even though I didn't get here until 11am because I was having a hard time maneuvering this morning. If I can, I'm still going to walk later. Maybe just once around the building instead of twice. Maybe a lot slower than I'd like. But I am going to go out there and try. Or at least find an empty conference room and have my pal Leslie walk with me.

You'll probably be hearing a lot more about this journey. I'd like to tell you that my goal is to post here every day, diet related or not. But let's not lie. My real goal - and this is pretty sad - is to get more than six hours of sleep each night this week. Um, right. I realize that six hours is less than the recommended amount. I'm starting small. With a goal that I actually have a small chance of accomplishing. If that works, we'll up it to six and a half for next week. But for this week, I'm aiming for six. And as sad as that is, posting every day might interfere with that. Either that or posting will interfere with working (like right now). So odds are good that I won't make it here every day this week. But I will be around. Don't you worry. I haven't told you about Vacation Bible School yet!!


Elizabeth said...

Okay, I've read this three times now. First, WOW. I'm tearing up again just thinking about it. I love you. I just can't thank you enough for all the ways you make my life better.

Second, don't beat yourself up over donuts--even four donuts. Food is a wonderful, happy thing. Don't take that away from yourself. If you feel like you CAN'T have donuts, you're just going to want them even more. You can have donuts. I am giving you permission. Savor every minute of them. Notice the texture and taste and smell.

And finally, I'm so sorry your back hurts, but I am SO SO SO SO proud of you for the way you're taking it! One of the best things about walking is that you can still do it...Leslie's right, it IS the perfect exercise! I just love watching her too. She's so cute about things. I haven't done the DVD from the book yet, but I can't wait to hear her say "Woo". She just totally cracks me up. lol

Love you! Thank you for all the wonderful things you said & for making me cry a little--'cause sometimes it's good to cry a little with your friends. :-)

Cheri said...

Love you right back! Okay, now you made me cry, too! This girly crying thing is why the men in our lives roll their eyes at us. You know that, right?

Oh, just so you know - it's 12:15 am, I just got home from work (it's Waco's payroll day), and I'm getting ready to press 'Play' on my Leslie DVD before I go to bed. This so would not have happened a month ago. Of course, this might make it harder to meet my six hours of sleep goal...oh, well! I guess I'll be in late tomorrow (why start showing up on time now?!?).

Elizabeth said...

Showing up on time is highly overrated...it's much better to feel good about what you did and to get some sleep :-)

T said...

Ok, so all I did was read and both of you made me cry!! (This is sort of bad since I am sitting at my desk with red eyes and have a meeting in a few. Let them wonder! :-)

I truly am so proud of both of you. You are both so amazing! How you both manage everything with families is beyond me! I can't manage to do it with just me...) I so want to grow up and be just like of both of you!

Love you dearly!

Pattie said...

Hey...can I cry with you guys too? Man...I'd love to see both of you...or ONE of you! I do miss you guys.

Four donuts...I want to share in that too! :)

The Patients Voice said...

A New Blog from The Patients Voice – about Back Pain

Dear Friends

Welcome to the newest blog from The Patients Voice. In this blog we are very keen to explore your thoughts and ideas about the experience of suffering from back pain.

We would therefore like to invite you to participate in the blog. Firstly by having a look at the blog and secondly by participating yourself. It is a great opportunity to share experiences and information about back pain.

To visit the blog please go to
Blogs are a wonderful way for patients and their carers to connect with each other. But not just that they are a great way to disseminate information with people who suffer from back pain.

You may also notice that our site has been re-designed so please feel free to have a look at other parts of the site. If you have any suggestions regarding the site please do feel free to email me about them.

Remember The Patients Voice is a great opportunity for you to share with others.

Best wishes

Belinda Shale
The Patients Voice