Saturday, February 25, 2012

Time Machine

I was running an errand by myself the other day (rarity) and on my way home, I heard a song on the radio, a hip-hop song that probably would have played in a club in my pre-husband, pre-children days of going-out. I was suddenly transported back to my younger, thinner, more beautiful self of, oh.... about 21 years old. I was at a club with a bunch of girlfriends, drinking Captain & Diet, doing shots of cherry vodka and dancing my ass off. No doubt, I was hot - I never dressed slutty though, it was more about confidence than looks.

It took me a long time to feel good in my skin; to not compare myself to those perfectly skinny, big-boobed, girls with fake tans getting ALL the attention. I was finally in a place where a man's affection and attention were icing on the cake, not my reason for living. Secretly, I was hoping that I wouldn't have to get married and, instead, I could go on living this life.

So, there I am, getting hit on, laughing and carrying-on over drinks with friends, oblivious to the fact that in 10 short years I will be happily married with two kids.

I am sure lots of mothers have these moments. The times when we remember fondly the single life.... to the point where we wish we could go back in time, maybe just for a day or two, to party without worrying about waking up the next morning with the kids; or being the object of affection to a handsome stranger; or spending your paycheck on an amazing pair of high heels just to wear out to the bar.

I think some moms are scared to admit this - they don't want anyone to think they don't love their children. OF COURSE I love my children and I am so blessed to have two beautiful boys. But I spent 29 years WITHOUT them and only 3 WITH them, so I am still adjusting!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Elijah - 4 months!


My 'little' Elijah is now 4 months old, which requires a 4-month well-baby visit to our pediatrician. While I was excited to see how BIG he is, I was also excited to discuss his eczema and poor sleeping habits with her to gain some insight and advice.

The good news:

He is 18 lbs (exactly) and 26" long! Both the 90th percentile for his age group! VERY similar to his big brother. I know that just cause a baby is big, doesn't mean that he is healthy - we look to the milestones for that, and he is doing great in both departments, so we are pleased!

The bad news:

Elijah's sleeping is miserable and so is his eczema - which, apparently, are connected in many ways. The itchiness is what can disrupt his sleep and causes his to rub his face, and scratch his head raw (poor baby). We have gotten it under control, but not cleared up, so he is on a regime of multiple slathering of Aquaphor per day and hydrocortizone on his face and neck twice a day.

This should help with the disrupted sleep, however, his inability to self-soothe is just as big of a problem. He wakes up and has no idea how to fall back asleep. YES, this is my fault for rocking and feeding my baby to sleep (sue me) and letting his sleep in his swing - had it not been for the eczema, he wouldn't be waking up so much and therefore wouldn't need super-duper soothing skills. So, we are now on night 3 of 'crying it out', and man, is this child stubborn! I can handle the crying, I just know how tired he is and desperately want him to sleep for his own sake, let alone mine. I feel like I'm breaking his will, not just bad sleep habits!

I have read multiple books and considered lots of theories, and this is what makes the most sense. If it doesn't work, we'll attempt some alternative way of getting us all some more sleep!

Day 20 of the "get rid of the baby weight" challenge


Wow - 20 days went by fast! I wish I had more results, but I am pleased with what I have - A total loss of about 5 lbs! I wish I had measured myself, but I didn't. So I will measure myself today and work from here. 5 lbs doesn't seem like much when you have 25 to lose, BUT when I look at the bag of potatoes above, it seems like A LOT! (I would have put up one of those photos of body fat, but that is just gross!)

I slacked for a total of 3 days. Two due to illness and 1 due to complete and utter lack of motivation! I didn't 'shred' for about 4 days, and instead walked, did a yoga video or went to pilates class.

I have continued to eat well with only a few slip-ups on sweets or those yummy corn bread blasters at Heaven on Seven. I crammed my butt into a pair of pre-pregnancy jeans, although they cause severe muffin-top, I was able to zip them up and wear them without pain - not the end result I'm looking for, but a step in the right direction!

I am actually contemplating signing up for a 5K walk/run/race on St. Patrick's Day. I don't plan to run, but perhaps a slow jog. I don't run. I hate running, but perhaps that is why I should do it. A goal to work towards. If I could actually run 3+ miles without stopping or dying, that would be one of my biggest accomplishments - physically. (yes, even bigger than pushing a 9 lb, 11 oz baby out of me!) I know that probably sounds stupid to all my 1/2 marathon or tri-athlete friends/family members, but a fat girl has got to start somewhere! A realistic goal will set me up for success, NOT failure. So, as I type this, I am thinking of actually doing it. Maybe one of my neighbors will want to join with me, expect they are all in better shape....ugh.

Current weight: 180
Current attitude: Pleased, but not resting on my laurels
Days to go until personal deadline: about 40 days (1/3 of the way there)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Day 7 - plus some help with food choices!


I have officially completed 1 week of kicking my own butt into shape! WOO HOO!

MY PLAN:

1) Workout EVERYDAY! If I have pilates, or don't have time for the "30-day Shred", then a walk with the kiddies will do.

2) Food Diary - counting calories, specifically. I am writing down everything I eat, using my handy-dandy scale to weigh portions, etc. I've cut my caloric intake significantly without feeling hungry.

3) Drinking LOTS of water - at least 40 ounces per day!

4) Only one 'sweet' per day. One cookie, one Rice Krispies Treats, etc. If you know me, you know how HARD this is!!!

5) No eating after dinner (7:00 p.m.) I crave sweets at night, so I try to eat a sweet after lunch, then I know that I can't have any before bed.

I started out at 185 lbs (+- 1 lb. depending on time of day of weigh-in)
I am now at 182 (+- 1 lb.)

3 lbs of loss in 1 week is HUGE!!!

Jason asked me last night if I feel as though I have more energy now that I've been working out everyday. It's hard to tell with the sleep deprivation I have going on these days (Thank you, Elijah). I think I feel stronger - my abdominal muscles feel as though they are regaining their shape from their jell-o like state.

On the eating front, I am making much better choices about food. Truthfully, I lost about 7 lbs in November and December just by watching what I ate, but fell off the wagon around Christmas, and it took me this long to get back on!

Healthy snacks:

A baggie of carrots and 2 tablespoons of hummus is only about 100 calories - much more filling than a teensy-weensy 100 calorie bag of crackers or cookies.

Breakstone's 100 Calorie Cottage Doubles - cottage cheese & fruit - also have 8 grams of protein.

Okios Superfruits Greek Yogurt (4 oz)- is only 90 calories and has 10 grams of protein.

Hard boiled egg whites are only about 20 calories and 4 grams of protein (or the whole hard-boiled egg is about 80 calories with 6 grams of protein)

For Breakfast:

1/2 cup of un-cooked old-fashioned rolled oats, mix with 3/4 cup water, microwave for 2 minutes, add 1 splenda packet, 1/2 - 1 teaspoon Cinnamon, 1 tsp vanilla extract and mix well. Slice a banana on top and the whole thing is only about 275 calories and so filling!

One whole egg & one egg white scrambled together & cooked in a pan with a little cooking spray, sprinkled with 2 tablespoons of shredded cheese, 2 slices of lean bacon on two pieces of toasted light whole wheat bread = about 300 calories! YUMMY!

For Lunch:

Usually leftovers, but I also like to make Mac & Cheese for Jonah then I take 1 cup and mix with a 2.6 oz package of Albacore Tuna = 360 Calories

Or, mix with a sliced Applegate Farms Organic all beef hot dog = 380 calories

Or a veggie burger (no bun) with some ketchup (1 tbsp.) and a side of fruit (1/2 an apple), cottage cheese (4 oz. cup) & chips (7 chips) = 330 calories

Dinner:

Slice a pita in 1/2 (so you have two full circles, not two 1/2 moons), spread 1 tablespoon basil pesto, lay 4 ounces of grilled, sliced chicken breasts, sprinkle with 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese, bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Serve with a salad of Romaine lettuce, cheery tomatoes and a light balsamic dressing (1 tbsp) = 400 calories

In general I make a normal dinner recipe and just REALLY watch my portion size. If it's going to be really high in calories, I just have a small portion and add on a salad or lots of veggies to fill me up. I splurge on the weekends - most notably, Friday night Pizza at Little Italian.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Day 3


My last post detailed my embarrassing status as a fatty and this post will detail my progress towards being skinny.... um, I mean healthy!

I started the Jillian Michael's 30-day Shred workout regime. I am using Level 1 right now, hoping to transition to Level 2 by the 5th or 6th day. Thursday was "Day 1". Frankly, I had trouble walking up and down the stairs after Thursday, but I persevered, stretched, and took some Motrin so that I could complete "Day 2" on Friday.

Today is Saturday and I have a Post-Natal Pilates class for 1 hour in the morning, which will replace my the DVD, but its back to the DVD tomorrow before Super Bowl. Typically the hardest part of this type of commitment is the first few days. If you can make it through that, and ESPECIALLY when you start seeing results, you can pick up momentum and it becomes a habit, and therefore, easier.

I am proud of myself, thus far, and hope to start seeing some results in my body soon. For now, I'll just have to settle for the aches in my shoulders and thighs which remind me that I'm doing a good thing for my health and my fat belly!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Baby-Weight

I refuse to be "this woman":

WOMAN: "I am on a diet to lose my baby weight!"
FRIEND: "How old is your baby?"
WOMAN: "5"
FRIEND: "5 months?"
WOMAN: "No. 5 years old."

I remember a day when I was thin, fondly. It was long before I had kids, or was married. I was young and thin. Now, I am old(er) and fat. Yes, I just had a baby, but I was fat before I had the baby. I don't say this so that others will say to me "you're not fat!". I say it because it's true and I am hoping that if I say it out loud MORE, it will shame me into doing something about it. I recently saw an piece on the news about the program tweet what they eat - that way everyone can see how good (or more likely, how bad) a person is eating and it will motivate him/her to eat better. I can see how this could work..... but since I don't tweet, this blog will have continual updates of my progress, good and bad!

If I could be happy in my own skin (and weight), I wouldn't mind, but I am not happy. I want to look the way I used to - as much as is possible given the structural changes to my body caused by pregnancy. I let myself gain entirely too much weight with both pregnancies and now I am paying the price.

Here is a timeline of my decline!

2003 (the year I met Jason) weight: 145 (size 8)
2005 (the year I got married) weight: 155 (+10) (size 10)
2008 (pre-pregnancy with Jonah) weight: 160 (+5) (size 12)
2009 (at delivery of Jonah) weight: 225 (+65) (maternity)
2010 (1 year post-partum) weight: 170 (-55) (size 14)
2011 (at delivery of Elijah) weight: 215 (+45) (maternity)
2012 (3 months post-partum) weight: 185 (-30) (size 16)

WOW- that was both embarrassing and eye-opening at the same time!

Depending upon how you look at it, I have between 25 and 40 pounds to lose. So I don't disappoint myself, I am starting out with a goal of 25 lbs to bring be back to pre-pregnancy with Jonah. Ideally, I would like to be back to around 150 (35 pounds). If you believe in the BMI, I am technically over-weight right now. I hold my weight in my mid-section - the most dangerous place, putting me at risk for other health-related issues including diabetes and heart disease (the #1 killer of women).

I have begun reducing my caloric intake, cutting back on sweets (my weakness) and portion sizes, drinking more water, and not eating after dinner - this has helped me drop several post-partum pounds. However, I know that the only way to get rid of this huge sagging belly is through exercise. If you know me, you know that I HATE working out. I have an aversion to any and all forms of exercise. So, what's a fat girl to do????

Fortunately, I have met several friends that are going to motivate me. They introduced me to Jillian Michaels 30-day Shred! It promises a 20 lbs weight loss in 30 days (given you do the workout every day for 30 days and I think you're also supposed to follow her meal-planning guide. I downloaded it from Amazon directly to my laptop - level 1 was only $2.00 and I could immediately do the 20 minute work-out.... and I am proud to say that I did it!! I feel like Jell-O, but I did it!!! I am also on the hunt for a double stroller so that the three of us can get out and walk as much as the weather will permit.

Goals? Well, as I said, my first goal is to lose 25 lbs. Through diet alone, you can expect to lose 1-2 lbs per week. Adding in exercise, I think I could up that to 3-4 lbs per week - approximately 2 months - April 1st? I am a bridesmaid in my dear friend Cathy's wedding on May 12th....I would love to be back to my 'old' self by then and I think I can do it!!

So hopefully, you'll be seeing a Becca that resembles this: (Maui Honeymoon 2005)