Yay! It’s show us your life time! I love this blog carnival headed by the beautiful Kelly, it always gives me something interesting to write about, and I love having all those other fascinating blogs to check out! A bit of a weekend treat. 🙂
And this week, it’s something suitably January – Weight Loss Tips, Diets, Workout Ideas!
Oh brother. Have I ever got a tonne of stuff to write on this. You may want to grab a coffee (or a diet coke. Brilliantly, I first typed that as diet cake, which is a Freudian slip if ever I’ve read one!). I have been in a yoyo cycle with my weight since I don’t know when.
Oh, hang on, I know *exactly* when. In year 7, when I was average size, but some bullies decided I was fat (ironically turning me into a comfort eater. Which made me fat *eye roll*). Or every time my dorm-mates whispered about me after lights out, because I was such an easy target, parents hundreds of miles away, and pretty quiet and docile (and therefore unlikely to ever fight back…). Or in high school, where in reality I was chubby/fat/big, but low self esteem meant I ate and ate and hid away as much as possible. By the time I got to uni, I hated the way I looked. I genuinely thought I was just the ugliest thing.
Fast-forward ten years, and I’m pleased to say the picture is more positive. Although I’m still large, growing into my body has made be learn to appreciate parts of it, even whilst decrying others. And I’ve managed to seperate fat and ugly – two words which for a long time were synonyms for me. I also have a far more healthy attitude to food – the reason I’m so big now is because I comfort ate throughout my teens and early twenties (seriously, I do not know how I packed so much food away). Now, I enjoy food, and when I do eat a huge portion it tends to be because I’m loving what I’m eating, rather than just senseless munching to dull pain or fear or loneliness or self loathing. I’m more balanced and aware, and that’s a good thing.
However, with this new found acceptance and awareness comes a realisation that I am far too big. I’m lucky in that I carry most of my weight in “healthier” areas (thighs, butt, boobs) but I am still obese. Yep, OBESE! That word scares me. I guess it’s also worthwhile saying that I can and do do many of the things the weight loss experts claim “obese” people cannot do…but that don’t take away from the fact that I am way too heavy. And that even if I do have “heavy bones”, there’s still way too much meat on those bones! Using the BMI scale (Body Mass Index), up to 25 is healthy…up to 30 is overweight…and I’m at 36.
So this year I have said I want to get my BMI to below thirty by the time I am thirty… something which is going to require me to drop 38 pounds (or 2 stone, 10 pounds. Or 19 kilos. Whatever way you look at it, quite a lot).
I started in earnest two weeks ago. Way too earnest, in fact. I always do that, go famine or feast. So the first bit of January I cut my portions, burned loads of calories, didn’t touch even a glass of wine…and promptly got tired, bored, and sad. So I then started eating too much and not exercising. And now I’ve found the plan I’m actually going to follow…Moderation!
(the ironic thing is, I *know* what I should be doing! I teach my students about it! I hope some of these ideas might work for me…and you!)
So here’s my plan:
* Around three hour long (or more half hour) workouts a week. Enough to get fit and tone and break a sweat, but not so much that I am exhausted! So next week I have an aerobics class, a couple of swims and a walk planned. I want to have an exercise schedule that I can squeeze into my life, not something that takes it over.
* Portion control – I’ve done this before, and it’s ace! WebMD has a great page explaining what an actual portion is,
* Plenty of water, and less caffiene!
* More protein in my diet – this is key for me! I tend to eat plenty of fruit and veggies, and too many carbs, but protein is the great neglect in my diet. Oh, and iron.
* Cutting down my alcohol intake – I’m already doing this and feeling the benefit.
* Effectiveness – this is really about burning calories or doing a little exercising when possible. A quick fifteen minute boogie while cleaning. Some crunches in the morning, just a dozen. Walking a couple of tube stops. Wandering round when I’m on duty. Thinking how to make my day more effective, really.
* Eight hours sleep a night. I find this sooooooooo hard, but am working up to it! I tend to feel guilty for sleeping more than six hours – surely there’s work to be done? – but am retraining my brain on this.
* Rewards – every time I drop a BMI point (so 5-6 lbs) I’m going to give myself a treat (manicure, movie, DVD or similar). And I’ve made my clothing budget more closely allied to my weight loss – for example when I drop a stone I can ‘release’ some money for new clothes (hopefully just in time for spring).
* ACCOUNTABILITY! I have a profile over on sparkpeople, and I really cannot recommend it enough. You can log everything you eat, all your exercsie, buddy up with people, plan activities, and learn all sorts of stuff. It’s a fab site, and keeps me honest!
* Reminding myself why I’m doing this, every day. To be healthy. To get more out of life. To feel prettier. And to buy more fabulous shoes. 🙂
So that’s what I’m hoping to achieve health wise this year. Expect happy-dances if and when I succeed… I really hope I do! What about you?