Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Wow, are my feathers ruffled! I read a post today from this lovely lady

and I got to thinking about a lot of times in my life where other people's ignorance has caused me pain regarding my weight.

There are those situations where they can't be blamed. I run into someone from high school and they don't recognize me. When I say who I am, they say something like "wow... you look different." Or a time when an old friend of mine I hadn't seen in awhile asked my best friend, "Is Amy pregnant?".

Being in China brought so many of these situations up. It was absolutely impossible for me to find clothes in my small town. The stores carry nothing over a size 10 - and I'm told a 10 in China is about a 6-8 is here. Sure, I could have packed up and taken the 5 hour bus ride to Shanghai, then shelled out crazy money to shop at western stores; but I didn't. Half of me felt too ashamed; the other felt too lazy.

People in China would often smile at me and call me fat. My students on several occasions would describe what I looked like... to me. "Amy, your hair is so brown. You have beautiful eyes and you are very fat." A good friend I made told me honestly that no man wants a fat girl. She has been told that since childhood.

Then, there are those people who cannot feign ignorance. The jerk that always managed to make it into our circle. One night he told me "Amy, you'd actually be really pretty if you lost weight". Or the group of girls that giggle quietly when you have to pull the size 20 from the back of the rack they are at.

Life sucks sometimes. Sure, healthy living can make a big difference. But sometimes, when you feel so beaten down, you simply do not have the energy to try. It's a vicious circle (Oh my gosh, side note... anyone listen to Dane Cook, Vicious Circle? HILARIOUS). Anyway....

Today was an odd day diet wise.

Breakfast was oats with banana and some honey peanut butter. I got caught up in work and didn't have a mid-morning snack, but I did have a lunch date with some friends. It was wonderful. We went to Olive Garden and I got the soup and salad. I passed on the breadsticks (yes, my heart broke a wee bit) and had a small salad, followed by two helpings of their minestrone soup. According to their website, the whole meal totaled about 400 calories. I'm not sure I should believe it, but I'd like to!

Dinner was a ham and cheese sub from pizza place down the street. Hubby and I wanted to sink our teeth into something, and I decided to throw caution to the wind. Then I added up the calories and realized I had pretty much hit my limit. I finished it off with an ice cold cup of rice milk, and finished the day off with 1450 calories (and very little food to show for it).

I've realized that I just like eating healthy more. I like to EAT! I'd rather sit and eat a huge, heaping plate of veggies and salad than a small sub sandwich. I just need to chew and munch.

Tomorrow I'm getting paid, so I'm officially joining my gym. HOORAY!!!

I'm officially down .5 lbs from monday's weigh in. I'm hoping I can keep that coming. My first mini-goal is to get to 198, which was my lowest weight while in Asia last year. Here is a picture of me in Malaysia during our school's summer break. It's the first time I've posed for a picture and felt confident... in years. I want that again.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Bachelorette is my guilty pleasure.

I cannot resist the Bachelor or the Bachelorette... either show is like crack for me. I don't have one of those new-fangled digital box thingies that came about while I was in China, so I don't even get basic TV channels. I have a tv purely for movies and my Wii... but every tuesday, when the new episode is posted online, I am THERE, man.

So obviously, that's what I'm up to tonight. I had a long day; overtime galore. But it didn't break me!

Here's what I've had today:

1/2 a banana
lean cuisine (butternut squash ravioli)
cucumber from my friend's garden
2 eggs
laughing cow cheese
steamed snap peas
fresh cherries
nonfat chocolate pudding
an ice cold glass of rice milk. I'm addicted to this stuff - too bad it's so nutrient-deficient and calorie dense :(

I'm hoping that I'll have enough money this week to officially join my gym. I was on a "free" membership for a week, but now that's over. :( Payday needs to come soon!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Slept through the alarm.

This morning started as a whirlwind. I woke up to soft sunlight streaming in my window. For a moment, I was confused. Why would the sun be so bright at 5:30 am? Then my sleepy haze lifted and I bolted out of bed. It was about 7:00 - the exact time I'm supposed to be walking into the office.

In a matter of 10 minutes I dressed, brushed my teeth, packed my food, and fed my angel and my she-devil (I mean cats).

I hate mornings like that. I didn't get a shower. I felt disheveled. I forgot to bring my gym shoes so I could work out after work. But the day went alright. It was weigh in day, so I ate very light. Fage for breakfast, vegetable soup for lunch.

Weight? 209.6 lbs. Down 3 pounds from my TOPS meeting last week! My goal for this week is 2.6 lbs, so I will be at 207 next week. I'm gonna have to work!

Dinner tonight was random. A lean cuisine pizza for dinner, along with cherries. Dessert was an 80 calorie pudding cup. I'm now relaxing with a glass of rice milk. My calories are low today, but I'm not feeling like cramming them in at the end of the day.

I'm having a freak out day. Am I really starting a full course load of college classes in a month? Along with working 40+hours a week? Wow. I hope the business helps me LOSE weight, not gain. I've got to stay strong.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Ah, Geez.

Today? Epic fail. Well, not epic. But considering it's only day three, I feel pretty darn bad about today's dinner.

The rest of my day was great.

Breakfast: oats with banana and blueberries
snack: Activia
lunch: Lean Cuisine (butternut squash ravioli w/veggies), 1 cup baby carrots
snack: Apple

And then? Skipped the gym. There was a horrid thunderstorm going on, and I didn't wanna go. I found a new workout in my Fitness magazine I wanted to try at home, anyway. So I drove home, walked in, and found hubby dripping from his walk home from the Zoo. Apparently the zoo closes when the rest of the day is gonna be a freak storm... go figure! So he got out of work early. And let me know that we were going out to dinner for his uncle's b-day. Not a problem, I wanted to see the fam... but what to do?

The restaurant was Carrabba's. Texan/Italian. What, you say? Yep. Texan. Italian. NOTHING seemed healthy. I settled on a dish with grilled chicken, and noodles tossed with EVOO, basil, and crushed tomatoes. Not too bad! I only hate about 1/3 of it. Good girl, I bet you're thinking...

but I ate bread. Sweet heavens I ate bread. Too much. I'm stuffed.

I probably didn't have more than about 2000 calories today. But with no working out, and no diet, I feel like I took a serious step back. Time to step right back into my good girl shoes, eh? I felt good about myself today. The exercise really is what I've been missing. I diet all the time and fail. But spending an hour a day doing exercise immediately made me feel looser and more relaxed. And I've slept like a log two nights in a row - I NEVER do that!

Tomorrow is a normal work day, and then a movie with friends and fam. Should be a good time. I'm gonna try to work with it and do what I can to make smart choices.

Was there a moment you can pinpoint where you began to get fat, or to lose your control with eating? Was it gradual? Tomorrow I have a post planned about this. I've done a lot of digging in the deep depths of my dreary past to try to find out what makes me tick. It's hard core, I tell ya.

I leave you with more China pictures... just cuz.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Oh, China. How I miss thee.


I keep trying to put a link in my posts, and it isn't working. I tried with Kath yesterday, and also with SparkPeople yesterday. What am I doing wrong? Gr.

A guy named Patty

The other day, I called a local gym to find out some information (this is, in fact, the gym I later decided to join. The line rang, and then someone picked up and greeted me with a very low, masculine voice. He said...

_____ Fitness, this is Patty"

Really? Is this a thing? Do guys really go by Patty? It makes me think of a certain Johnny Cash song....

Anyway, Today went swimmingly! Work was same old, same old. I swear, that lil' cube is gonna be the death of me. Good thing I have some fun coworkers (aka partners in crime) around me or I think I'd simply fade into the nothingness of all those sheets of paper and paperclips.

After work, I hiked my flabby-but-optimistic booty to the gym and worked out for an HOUR! Again! I walked/jogged for 50 minutes (okay, mostly walked) and managed 3.5 miles. I also tried my luck for 10 minutes on another piece of machinery... I believe Kath refers to it as a squirrelliptical :) Honestly, that's all that was in my head. I don't know the real name for the darn thing. But I liked it! Much better than the ol' fashioned elliptical trainers. It seemed like a more natural gait.

When I got home, I showered and fixed dinner. Do any of y'all have as many issues with making omelets as I do? (or with spelling omelet?). I blame it on the pan. Always the pan. Anyway, I gave up and made an "egg scramble" of my omelet ingredients. It was really yummy.

Meals for the day:

first breakfast: peach activia yogurt

second breakfast: 1/2 cup old fashioned oats with 1/2 banana and 1/2 cup blueberries

lunch: stuffed cabbage lean cuisine, 1 cup baby carrots

afternoon snack: orange

after-workout snack: apple

dinner: egg scramble (crumbled turkey burger, spinach, lowfat cream cheese), steamed snow peas, and 1 piece whole wheat bread

dessert: 60 calorie chocolate pudding and 1 cup sweet cherries

I followed this perfectly. And it was all delicious!

Final calorie count: 1498 calories

I'm feeling good these days. Things are up in the air, but I have my hope back, as well as my zest for life. I'm enjoying exercise, housework, friends, family, blogging, pampering myself (nail polish, lotion, foot scrubs, etc.), and looking forward to starting the next chapter in the fall. I'll be working full time, and going back to school full time.

I am woman. Hear me roar. :)

What did you want to be when you were a kid? I was talking about this today at work with the two lovely ladies that sit in the Cave with me (aka the "back room"). Ideas thrown out were veterinarian.. writer... marine biologist... psychologist. It's amazing how as kids, we always have such lofty goals. We don't think about the money it will cost for school. Or the time it takes. We cared simply about what we saw making us happy.

I grew up too quickly. I started making the "rational" decisions. Set school aside so hubby can finish. You're married now - you need new friends. You are a wife; you should be cooking, dressing older, etc. My early 20's were consumed by working in an office and sitting at home watching tv in the evenings. What was I THINKING?!

I'm trying to fill my life with a little bit more now. School will be hard. But when it's done, my options are much more open. And I'll take pride in the accomplishment. My weekends are spent doing things. This weekend, we're getting together with some other crazy mid-20's to watch an old cheesy movie and make fun of it. Saturday will be spent at the race track with my sister, Mom, and Dad. Formula One racing... I've never been, but we'll see how it goes!!

Anywho, your wonderful posts from today are calling, and I must answer. Cheers!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

SparkPeople rocks.

Do you guys know this website?


As was today.

I stayed mostly with the menu I planned, but there were tiny tweaks. Instead of an apple, I had an orange. Instead of a WW hamburger bun, I used a tortilla. But... ya know. Health wise, I was RIGHT ON TARGET!

I was able to set up a free profile on the website mentioned earlier, and it let me create a goal. My goal weight, initially, is 163 lbs. That's 10 lbs higher than what I'd LIKE to be (my wedding weight) but right on target BMI-wise. When I put in my menu for the day (it gave calorie totals, along with carbs, protein, fat, etc.) it showed me how I was doing with my goal. It tells the numbers I need each day for optimal healthy weight loss. My carbs were a wee high today, but still within my range. Fat was a little low. I need me some avocado on my burger!

I also had my first day of exercise. I went to the gym and did 1/2 hour of walking on the treadmill, and 1/2 of biking on a recumbent bike. I felt SOO good afterwards! This lifestyle could get addicting.

total calories for the day: 1500

I've had a long, exhausting, wonderful day. Cheers!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Heading North

My mom is on the way to pick me up, and then we're driving north! I'm very excited. It's been a long, hard week. Bass Lake is my happy place. :)

My paternal grandparents were everything to me growing up. My parents divorced when I was 9, and my dad lived with them for 4 years. They were during some very important, formative years for me. Every other weekend, I went to their house. Grandma would teach me to make muffins, walk to the library with me, introduce me to old musicals. Grandpa would give me popcorn in an old paper bag, tell me stories about his birds (he had dozens of bird houses and feeders in the backyard) and hold my hand as he told me stories of his childhood.

Every summer they lived in their trailer on Bass Lake. It was small, but cozy and cute. Every other weekend (plus a full week each summer) was spent sitting on the beach, feeding leftover pancakes to the bluegills, and tromping through the woods. There is no place I feel more "me" than at the lake.

My Grandpa was always plagued with health problems. He had 2 strokes, 3 heart attacks, open heart surgery, colon cancer, diabetes... but the old man just kept going. About two years ago, things changed. He had a hard time moving around. He was having major circulation problems due to his diabetes. We all knew his time was coming.

I was torn. I almost threw away a chance at a year in China so that I wouldn't miss his last days; but he was so proud that I was going that I couldn't do it. Two days before my flight, I went to say goodbye. He was sitting on his couch, watching some old John Wayne movie like he always was. I crawled up next to him and we held each other and wept. His last words to me were "I am so proud of you. Go have an adventure. When you get home, you can tell me all about it".

The following summer was the last one he spent at the lake. He was constantly emailing me, telling me about the humming birds and the new cat that was wandering the park. My Grandma said that it was amazing; he found a new strength that summer. He was walking around, spending time out on the boat, reconnecting with friends.

In January, a month before I returned home from China, I got the call from my mom. She let me know that he had died peacefully in his sleep. I couldn't go to school for two days. When I finally returned, my little students had all make me cards, drawn me pictures. My favorite little female student, Lily, came up and hugged me, and then started crying. I will never forget her simple, loving words. "Amanda, you are sad. I am sad, too. Your Grandpa is game over. I cry for you."

Call me crazy, but once I returned home, I started telling him a little about my trip every once in a while. I've told him about my students, about my travels, about the day I found out I had lost him.

This weekend, when I visit the lake, I will picture me dumping that pail of fish down the side of the hill and chasing after them; and I'll picture you sitting there laughing hysterically instead of helping.

I will also picture the two of us sitting out on the deck watching the stars and the heat lighting.

I love you, Red. You were not only the best Grandpa a girl/woman could ever have, you were one of the best men.