Monday, July 19, 2010

From Biggest Loser To Injury To 100 Days

Back in April I joined a group of co-workers in a biggest loser weight loss challenge. Eight weeks in, my cousin died. He was the ultimate health enthusiast. He trained every day and was a healthy vegetarian for more than two decades before his spinal injury two years ago and later the heart attack that killed him. Week nine, three weeks before we concluded the challenge, I injured my knee at the gym. I've been homebound since.

Each member in the challenge sought her own way to lose the weight. Four weeks in, I joined Weight Watchers with a co-worker who was really getting it done. Access and cost were restraints for me so for support and ideas, I joined the online community.

I had surgery last week and it went well. I'll likely be hobbling back to work soon. The challenge at work has ended. My efforts have stalled. I'm still eating well and tracking my food most of the time but not being able to go to the gym and the financial strain of being off work has distracted me from setting new goals and working towards them. When I hurt my knee, my biggest fear was gaining weight back. When I continued to eat sensibly and continued to lose, I stopped worrying but I was stuck.

While the past few months have been rough, they don't compare to how I felt knocked on my ass when Mikey died. There are still days when I feel stunned. Before his death, I felt burdened and I couldn't see a direction. I injured my knee running into an immovable object. I went down hard. I was disoriented and I couldn't breathe. I couldn't move. I felt this way emotionally before my accident and at times after Mikey died, I've felt the same way.

This is the strangest segue I'll probably ever write, but through a book, I'm embarking on a lifestyle change. I'm participating in a challenge based Linda Spangle's book, 100 Days of Weight Loss. Based on my family and our medical history it makes sense that I'd latch on. I've busied myself with losing weight. I have withdrawn from those who know me and the things I love. I couldn't fix my knee or stop my grieving or pay the rent but losing weight was something tangible. This book is about by creating balance and letting go of the weight. I want to let go of the weight, the hurt and the imbalance in my life. I want what Mikey showed me was possible: to lead a life I love, to be whole, to be healthy and happy.

One of the reasons I've been successful with my weight loss so far is because I thrive in community efforts. I do well with group support and structured activities. I am blogger. I write. I need to record what I think and feel. So here I go again. I won't be blogging every assignment (another goal is to get back to books) though I will complete them.

Assignment #1

Make a list of any fears or negative behaviors that have hurt your weight-loss success in the past. Read each one out loud, and then say, "I used to be that way, but now
I'm different." •Then write new endings for them by completing this sentence: I used to ______________ (fill in your old behavior), but now I __________________ (write in your new ending). •Read these new outcomes often, and then live in a way that makes them true.

My list:

I refused and was afraid of tracking my food.
I refused to total calories.
I refused to measure my food.
I refused to join any weight loss program.
I refused to consider I could weigh 130 pounds.
I feared trying to become really lean; what would I look like lean? Would I recognize myself?
I feared taking pictures.
I feared I wouldn't be able to maintain a healthy weight.

Then and Now:

I used to be afraid to track my food, but now I do track and it's not as scary as I had feared.

I used to refuse to total my calories but now I do and it's empowering to know what I'm eating and learning where I can improve.

I used to refuse to measure my food, but now I find myself doing it without thinking about it.

I used to refuse joining any weight loss program, but now I belong to a wonderful community and I have a plan that is working for me.

I used to refuse to believe I could weigh 130 pounds, but now I don't think that's impossible. I can achieve a weight that is good for me.

I used to fear trying to become really lean. I couldn't imagine what I'd look like or if I'd recognize me, but now I'm open to seeing a me I haven't seen before.

I used to fear taking pictures, but now I want to get to place where I want lots of pictures. I'm moving in that direction.

I used to fear I wouldn't be able to maintain a healthy weight, but now I 'm eating better, losing weight and not feeling hungry. These experiences have bolstered my confidence that I can maintain.

Starting weight: 171 lbs.
Current weight: 154.6 lbs.
Current week loss: 0 lbs.
Total weight loss: -16.4 lbs


rhapsodyinbooks said...

You're doing great, and whether you blog or not, your friends are thinking of you and behind you!!!

Bellezza said...

I'm so impressed with you! It's hard to lose weight, requiring real discipline, self control and confidence. My husband suggested I take some off while he did, being told by the doctor he must, and he's lost THIRTY pounds! I've only lost eleven, which is discouraging, but I agree with you: it can be done. I didn't have as much to lose as he did, but still, every little bit helps us feel better emotionally and physcially. I'm way impressed with you! Like I said up top. ;)

MissAttitude said...

susan I miss you so much! My deepest sympathies are with you over the loss of Michael.

You can do this, you have so many people supporting you!

good luck on your challenge and I look forward to the day when you return to blogging (once you're ready) so that I can read whatever you talk about, doesn't even have to be about books.

Helen's Book Blog said...

I am so sorry to hear about Mikey; I cannot even imagine what you are feeling right now. Be sure to take care of yourself and not withdraw from everyone and everything! Doing this weight loss will help you get back in the swing of things. Your statements could have been written by me! I am trying to get my act together in this department as well so will read your posts eagerly and hope that I get motivated along with you.

Ali said...

Wow, sounds like it's been a really rough time for you and your family. I'm so sorry about all the sadness and the loss of a wonderful relative.

You've done a great job on the weight loss and this book sounds like a good fit. Looking forward to following your progress.

Doret said...

Very happy to hear the surgery went well.

When going through a lot its so easy to slip and just eat fast food

But you are working out that weight loss program.

Thanks for taking the time to write this.

susan said...

Ari, you have no idea how much I miss you. Doret and Helen, so glad you came by.

Zetta said...

wow, am I impressed! changing the way we think about our food consumption is key...and you're making amazing progress despite your injury. Do it, Susan!

Lorin said...

Congratulations for taking control and not letting your fears stand between you and your goals. Once again, by putting yourself out there, you are proving to be a role model for all of us.


smentha said...

A real-life story on how weight loss helps to fit into your favorite sexy bikini can be accessed right at our weight loss blog.

Jodie said...

Good luck with your challenge. What you've been dealing with is staggering and it's wonderful that you are now able to embark on new projects when you could justifiably be curled up in a ball. Good thoughts towards you right now.

susan said...

I swear I have the best friends in the world. Thank you.

evelyn.n.alfred said...

I've been thinking and wondering where you've been.

Miss ya.