My Progress!

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Adventures at Gattiland: And other horror stories that define my existence.

I’ve been dreading Saturday all week. Today is the day I have to take my son to Gattiland to see his “girlfriend.” Since we moved about ½ an hour away about a year ago, they don’t get to see each other very often. She is a sweet girl and about the only real friend T has so I want to do what I can to maintain that relationship for him, but uggh! Gattiland?

I hate to admit it, but I really have gotten to where I don’t like to go out in public. It isn’t so much that I don’t like people looking at me. In my 20’s I was SO caught up in what other people thought of me. I would have been mortified if a child pointed out the obvious to mommy: “Mommy that lady is FAT!” I never really held it against the child if that happened, they are just pointing out the obvious. It’s all in how the parent handles it. Most parents should tell their children that what they’ve observed might be the truth, but that it isn’t always nice to point such things out as it might hurt the person’s feelings. Most parents do handle it this way, but I have had horrible experiences where the parents have said the worst things to their child: “yes she is, that’s why mommy doesn’t want you to have too many sweets, you remember that next time you ask.” Right in front of me, not lowering their voice and not caring that I can hear every word they are saying. And that my friends is how eating disorders are born.

Honestly, this isn’t why I dread going out in public right now. I can handle stuff like this whether it’s handled well or not so well. I’m used to people staring or even worse…refusing to see me at all. I’ve always said, I’m the biggest invisible person in the room usually because people either stare or they look everywhere but at you. I am such a different person than I was in my 20’s. I know that despite what I look like on the outside, I am MORE than just my body. People will think what they want to think and there’s nothing I can do about that. If they choose not to get to know me or see me for the human being that I am, then I’m sorry for them. Under my gargantuan surface, I’m a mother who has struggled and sacrificed to raise her special needs son the best she can. I’ve worked crappy hours so that I never had to put him in daycare. I put off going back to graduate school after graduating Summa Cum Laude so that I could make sure he got the services and attention he needed. I’ve tried to be a good wife to my husband. I’m a loyal friend and someone I think everyone in my life knows they can count on. I don’t need other people to validate me anymore so that’s a plus 

However, when I do go out in public, what can still humiliate me is coping with my weakness. The muscular atrophy I’ve experienced over the last year; partially due to the depression I experienced after the break up of my marriage and then exacerbated after my knee injury. What does humiliate me is showing this weakness; having difficulty getting from my car to the building without being too fatigued; not being able to stand for very long; getting out of breath just walking a short distance; getting red in the face or god forbid SWEATING! It is these challenges that have made me want to hide in my home. I don’t want people to see me struggle. The last thing I want to see on their faces is pity…god no…not that. I think it’s because I remember looking at people like myself when I was slimmer and thinking the same thing…how awful it would be to be that fat and that disabled by my weight… and here I sit.

It can get to be a vicious cycle though. If you give in to it, then you wind up staying home, getting less and less physical activity and before you know it, you are bed-bound. I used to wonder how people could let themselves get that bad. At what point do you just never get out of bed again? I’m here to tell you that once you get to a certain weight, it doesn’t take much. One injury can mean even less physical activity and before you know it, you can’t stand up on your own. You can’t take a few steps without having some kind of support. So you stop going up and down the stairs as often, instead having your husband or son bring you something to drink and soon, even when the injury has healed, your muscle tone has gotten so bad that you can’t get out of a chair or out of bed without assistance. Of course, this is depressing as hell and how do we deal with yucky feelings; FOOD of course. So while your muscle tone is declining, your weight is increasing and it just compounds the whole problem.

I realize that I am at a turning point in my life right now. I can either choose to deal with the humiliation of getting out in public, letting strangers see my weaknesses, go to the gym even if I can only do 5 minutes at a time on the treadmill or resign myself to my fate. Unless I do all these things, I WILL wind up completely immobile and I doubt I will live much beyond the age of 40.

I absolutely refuse to give in. I’m a strong woman and I’ve dealt with much harder battles in my life than seeing that look of pity on someone’s face. I just have to tell myself that it won’t be like this forever. I’m making positive choices now and soon, I will start seeing some improvement.

Ok, pep talk done; now to shower and get ready for my fun adventure at gattiland. Just pray I can pass up the pizza buffet.


Comments are appreciated :) Click on comments below and page down for comment box!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Dealing with Diet Sabotage

If you have ever been on a diet, you have probably experienced the interesting phenomena known to many as the “diet saboteur.” Maybe it’s your mom who insists that “you can have a piece of my pie…you should reward yourself…you’ve done so good.” It could be your best friend who brings a bag of chocolates to your scrapbooking crop even though she knows you are committed to your new way of life. Many times it’s our husband or significant other bringing home a little treat for the two of you, buying you chocolates for Valentine’s day, or filling up your pantry with foods he knows are triggers for you. Whatever package they come in, they can spell disaster for someone who is trying to make healthy changes in their life.

For me, my prime saboteur has been my husband. Over the years I think I’ve been in denial about it. Why would he want to sabotage me? He can’t like me this way right? Later in our marriage it did make more sense, but at the time I don’t think it was something he did intentionally. I say that, but I don’t know that I believe it. There have been times when he’s admitted to feeling awful for not supporting me in the past so some part of him must have been aware of what he was doing. Since we have “separated” (we still live together for the sake of our son and remain good friends) I have a little distance and I can see that, intentional or not, the subtle sabotage continues.

A few months ago when I injured my knee, I realized just how close to completely disabled I was. My activity level plummeted even more and I became seriously weak. I’m still just now getting my strength back. When I realized how close I was to being bedridden, I told him that I was going to go back on my fasting diet until I lost enough weight to stand on my own without any pain. About 2 hours later, he baked a cake. I’ve had my first week of CHEAT FREE dieting in a long damn time and I come down to find he bought an extra supreme croissant at Jack in the Box waiting for me. I use my new found willpower and head to the pantry for cheerios and find Cocoa bloody Pebbles; the heroin of morning breakfast cereals!!! He NEVER buys stuff like that and THIS week I find it in the pantry? It can’t be a coincidence. But seriously, what the hell? Does he want me to end up bed bound, with a lifetime of wiping my ass to look forward to? (Just for the record, he has NEVER had to wipe my ass and I will take a bottle full of valium before I ever get that bad.)

I don’t know, maybe he’s torn himself. I know he cares about me. He worries about me and I know he’s also concerned about being “saddled” with me or even faced with the challenge of raising our son without me should I die. On one hand, I think he does want me to lose weight. We’ve talked and he’s told me that he misses the person I was when we were dating. I was cute and funny and loved being out and doing things. I often had to drag him out of the house. However, part of him must still feel threatened by my weight loss. Maybe it’s because he knows that if I lose the weight it might be harder to explain to his family why we are still getting divorced at some point? I think right now, they all assume it was my weight that killed our marriage and while that may have had something to do with it, it wasn’t the main reason. The truth is, I was never enough for him, thin or fat, and losing weight isn’t going to change that.

Who knows? All I know is that I finally seem to have enough of my own strength, at least for today, to resist temptation no matter where it comes from. I made my bowl of cheerios this morning, watched him eat that last supreme croissant followed by a bowl of cocoa pebbles right in front of me. I felt victorious!


As an aside: I want to say that my ex is a great guy. At the moment he is cleaning up the breakfast dishes because he knows I can’t really stand there and do it myself just yet, but he’s flawed just like I am; like we all are I suppose. This fact just makes dealing with the obvious diet sabotage even more difficult because I don’t want to “attack” him about it.

How do you handle the diet saboteurs in your life?

Comments are appreciated. Click on comments below and then page down for the comment box :)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

How I typically motivates myself during workouts...

I wanted to mention this great giveaway that Jaime over at stickyfeet2 is doing today. It is for a surfshelf and it looks like the coolest thing for those of us who have had our laptop surgically attached to our bodies. Honestly, thats the real reason I'm so fat...I mean, its really hard to get a decent walk in when the cord from your laptop to the outlet is only 4' long right? So thank you Jaime for thinking of your fellow bloggers with this generous give-a-way. Here's hoping I'm coordinated enough to jog and blog.

Sticky Feet (Part Deux): SurfShelf is God's Gift to Me!!

Want to leave a comment? Click on the word "comment" below.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Rabbits Don't Weigh 450 Pounds For a Reason

Yesterday, I found myself in a bind when it came time to get dinner for T and I. I finished work at 5pm and immediately jumped into the shower. I hadn’t had a chance to get one that morning and felt horrible so there was absolutely no putting that off. Earlier, I had told T’s dad that I would get his meds picked up (he’s been sick the last few days) so that E (T’s dad) didn’t have to make the trip himself. He was rushing to get to work and I felt like picking up T’s meds at the CVS drive through was at least one thing I could do. Unfortunately, I had forgotten that Tuesday nights were also the night I had to schedule my following week’s worth of work at my second job and that happened at 6pm, which meant that dinner was going to be an hour or two late.

T is very much a stick-to-your-routine kind of guy. I usually start making dinner no later than 5pm so that we can eat no later than 6pm. So, in T’s world if its 5pm and mom is in the shower, T assumes mom has forgotten about feeding him this evening and he goes into panic mode:

“Mom, you in there?”
“Yes sweetie, just taking a quick shower, I’ll be out in a minute”
“umm, ok well its 5 o’clock”
“I know, I’ll be out in just a few minutes”
I can almost hear the heavy breathing just outside the bathroom door. I’m officially being stalked.
“So, what are we going to do for dinner?” T yells through the door
“T, I’ll be out in just a minute honey ok? Can we talk about it then?”
more heavy breathing from the other side of the door.

The conversation went on like this until I had finally managed to finish my shower and by then I was completely frazzled. I promise you, I have not ever ever ever forgotten to feed this child, but he stalked me as if he knew I secretly planned to starve him for jollies that evening.

Because I knew things were going to cause dinner to run late, I figured we were probably going to have to pick something up while we were out getting T’s meds. I asked T what he wanted to get for dinner. His first suggestion was Bill Millers, one of his favorite BBQ places. I have no idea what the nutritional content of their sandwiches are, but I’m guessing it isn’t good. I make a quick stop at the Bill Millers website so that T and I could check out the nutritional value together and discovered that they had conveniently chosen to only share nutritional information on foods most people wouldn’t associate with fattening fare (ie. Salads, turkey breast, skinless chicken…DUH we know those are relatively healthy!). If you get a chance though, take a look at the fat content of some of their salad dressings; unreal!

I turn to T and remind him that we both promised each other that we were going to start making healthier choices and suggested sushi as an alternative. He thought this was a great idea and the evening ended happily with a nice healthy sushi combo from our favorite sushi place.

Later, I started thinking about how I should probably plan ahead for situations like this since these are the sort of situations that usually trip me up. Yesterday was especially challenging because I hadn’t had lunch so I was starving by the time we went to get something to eat! You mix starving + a meal out and it doesn’t usually equal healthy food choices at Chez Supersquared. So what I did, after getting my satiated stalker into bed later that night, was get on the computer and take a look at what I USED to eat and compare it to healthier food choices I might make in the future. Again, while I knew the stuff I typically ate was riddled with fat, I honestly was shocked when I added everything up.

I’ve included some of my typical meals below along with my plans for healthier choices should I find myself at any of these places in the future. Read them and weep (and rejoice in my healthier selections):

Extra Value Meals, Big Mac, with large French Fries & large Coke
Total calories: 1350
Total Fat: 54g

Caesar with Grilled Chicken, without dressing
Iced Tea
Total Calories: 220
Total Fat: 6g

Chicken: Mild, Breast, mashed potatoes and gravy, biscuit, corn on the cob
Total Calories: 900
Total Fat: 39g (13 just from the biscuit alone!)

Mild Breast without breading, Corn on the cob, mashed potatoes with gravy, green beans
Total Calories: 500
Total Fat: 9g

Chicken Club Sandwich Crispy, large French fry, large coke, large frosty
Total Calories: 1930
Total Fat: 65g

Alternative Meal:
Garden Sensations, Cranberry Pecan Chicken, no Dressing with baked potato, plain
Total Calories: 530
Total Fat: 6g

Pizza Hut
Cheese breadstick, 3 pieces of pepperoni and mushroom pizza, two cinnasticks with icing
Total Calories: 1135
Total Fat: 40g

2 slices Thin and Crispy Veggie Lovers with very little cheese
Total Calories: 290
Total Fat: 15.5g (wow on the fat, probably won’t eat at pizza hut that much longer)

Jack in the box
Ultimate Cheeseburger, French fries and large coke
Total Calories: 1900 (1010 for hamburger ALONE)
Total Fat: 99g (71g from hamburger ALONE)

Asian Chicken, with Grilled Chicken Strips, without dressing or condiments and fruit cup
Total Calories: 250
Total Fat: 1.5g

Notice Jack in the box gives us the best and absolute worst of both worlds. As I looked over these totals, it made me think of an endocrinologist I saw once. He looked me straight in the eye and told me that there was no way anyone could eat themselves up to 400+ lbs. I’m sure he thought that’s what I wanted to hear, but even I knew that was a crock in today’s world. Just substituting a few meals a week at your local fast food restaurant may cause problems depending on your overall eating habits and activity level. It is very easy for me to see how I got to the size I am now. While I do have some biological things going on that make it harder for me to lose weight (minor thyroid problems & PCOS), I have always owned the fact that nobody gets to my size eating celery and lettuce. I have made very bad food choices and LOTS of them. This was a great wake up call for me. Do you have any other tips you might share about how to go about trimming calories when you eat out?

Want to leave a comment? Click on the word "comment" below and page down for comment box.


Pig shower pic
Fat Bunny Unadulterated