Saturday, September 24, 2011


I decided to watch premieres of new shows this week, and it really hit home how TV watching has ceased to be a habit for me.  In fact, I so rarely turn on the TV that I think I'm paying about $15 per episode of the Daily Show. I should probably cancel my cable.

I don't say this because I'm one of those pretentious oh-I-don't-even-HAVE-a-TV types. It's that it got me thinking about habits. I've read that it takes 3 weeks for a regular practice to become a habit, which in the scheme of things isn't very long at all.

This week I worked hard to strengthen my low-carb habit, and didn't have any cheats or slip-ups, unlike last week.  The scale is teasing me though - I've been hovering around 222 all week, but I also feel like I've lost a tad in the way of inches - I can always tell if there is more or less thigh rub.  Ha.

I did develop one bad habit I need to stop - I've been PMSing like a mofo and for the last few evenings I've whipped up a bit of heavy cream with cocoa powder and splenda. It's delicious, but also very high in calories in fat, and it may be contributing to my stall.  So that's gotta stop.

And I was less good about exercising.  Considering how much I just shelled out on my elliptical, there's really no excuse for this.

So, my focus now is on building habits and stamping out the bad ones.  Inch by inch, I'll get this done. And I can't wait!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sick Day

Oof.  I have a nasty, nasty cold. I swear, I am always the early adopter for whatever crud is in season.  Fashion - I'm the last to check something out. But viruses? - I'm all over that.

So I'm sick.  I'm bored too - being sick was a lot more fun when I was 9 and could watch Charles in Charge and eat toast all day. Now I try to catch up on laundry and worry about what'll await me at work tomorrow.

But the good news is I didn't go off plan at all.  I was feeling like I needed soup, so I decided to make myself a vat of broccoli soup.  Yum:

Since I've promised to share recipes, here's my best attempt at recreating this:

1 1/2 pounds of broccoli florets (half a giant costco bag)
About 3-4 cups of beef stock or water
1/2 tablespoon of dijon mustard
dash of Worcestershire sauce
pinch of garlic powder (to taste)
pinch of cayenne pepper
3/4 cup heavy cream
1+ cups of sharp shredded cheddar and/or other sharp cheese
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped bacon and extra shredded cheese


Cook broccoli and stock in large stock pot until broccoli is soft.  Blend with an immersion blender or transfer to a blender in small batches.  Bring to a simmer. Add more liquid until consistency is thick but not too thick. Add mustard, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder and cayenne pepper. Turn off heat and whisk in cream and cheese.  Top with shredded cheese and bacon crumbles.

This makes a lot of soup.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

A little stumble

Oh my. After a great first week I stumbled a bit this last week. But I'm still down to 221.2, so I've lost 7 pounds in two weeks. I'll take it!

So what happened?

Well, I ended up at two happy hours right after work this week. So beer plus $2 appetizers - that's a hard one.  I'm not disciplined enough to just ignore food altogether when I haven't eaten for hours.  So that's what happened.  And then that turned into a couple other very small cheats here and there.  Mostly wine. I know I shouldn't be drinking alcohol but I really enjoy a glass of wine every evening with some good cheese.  I suppose if I keep losing though I can keep the wine.

I also didn't exercise very much.  I was feeling rather under the weather and right now I have a very bad cold.  But it's ok. Tomorrow is a new day. And 7 pounds is 7 pounds!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Office Party

Christ, my office really will be the death of me.

Today was an office party. It was rough, but I was able to have two bunless hotdogs and a single bite of cherry pie someone kept shoving in my face.  There were sooo many other good things I wanted, but I reminded myself that those things will still exist when I'm 125 pounds if I still want them.

This morning my weight was 223.4. Down almost 5 pounds. Yay! That helped keep me motivated.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

My New Toy

My new elliptical, a Nordic Track Strider, was delivered and set up today. I did 20 minutes on it - it's a beast. 20 minutes and I was already a sweaty, heaving mess. I used to be pretty good at elliptical - could do an hour at a time with no problems. But hey, whatever. Rome wasn't built in a day. I'll get there.

My only issue is that one paddle creaks in kind of a "holy god, fatass, get off me" kind of way. It could be a bolt that's too tight, of course, but that's my interpretation.

I had my quiche for breakfast, a smoked salmon and arugula salad with lemon vinaigrette for lunch, and yogurt marinated lamb for dinner.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Day 4

Well, I couldn't just wait until the end of the week so I hopped on the scale and I'm down 3 pounds. Woot! I know it's probably just water weight, but I'll take it!

I had the day off work so I got some stuff done around the house and got 2 hours of walking in on my treadmill at 3.4 mph.  It was a nice, very sweaty workout.

I was also really hungry today - had my crustless quiche for breakfast, an avocado with a spritz of lime juice for lunch, a giant arugula-and-parmesan salad for a snack, and now I'll probably have lamb kebabs with the lamb I've had marinating all day.

I dreamed last night that I kept eating buttered toast. I was really upset with myself. But man toast is goooood!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Back to work

I started back at work today after a 2-week vacation. As usual there were bagels, donuts and chips around (what is wrong with these people?!).  I managed to resist them all!

I had a big breakfast - some sausage and egg crustless quiche I made last night, and a big chicken caesar salad for lunch.  I'm having a pre-dinner snack of broccoli-cheese soup right now (I made it from scratch so I know it's low carb) and then I'll hit the treadmill for a while and have a small steak for dinner.

I found out today I'm going to be traveling for work for a week or two in November.  I should be excited - it's the middle east, which I love, but it's almost impossible to stick to any eating plan on work trips (and I don't really want to, because I love tasting local specialties).  But I have 2+ months, and I can do the best I can until then. And it doesn't have to throw me completely off track.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Labor Day Musings

Happy Labor Day, everyone!

I just hit up my neighborhood swimming pool for a final lap swim.  I decided at about 30 laps to keep pushing through, and go for the full mile (65 laps).  I kept pushing, and I did it. It wasn't the most strenuous swim, as I stuck to breaststroke, but I got there.  And I feel great!  Fitday tells me I burned something like 900 calories, but I'm always skeptical of numbers like that. Regardless, I'm feeling good!

Now, back to Labor Day. I'm going to use today as an opportunity to talk about my job and its impact on my life and my weight loss goals.

Basically, I think my job is the biggest contributor to me gaining weight and having such a difficult time losing it.

I work in a very high stress, fast-paced job for the federal government, going on close to 8 years now.  When I started in 2004, I had low-carbed and exercised my way to a healthy 125 pounds and I started my job feeling great, looking great, just generally at the top of my game.

I won't go into all the details but the stressful assignments, long hours, weekends in the office, etc all contributed to a slow and steady gain over the years.

Add to that a thyroid disorder and at some point I just threw in the towel, and for the last 6 months I've barely exercised and haven't really made much of an effort anymore. I think I just got so tired of it all.

And here we are.

I know it's time for a new job, and I'm looking, without much success. I love being busy, but I also tend to take on too much work until I become so overwhelmed it takes a toll on my health and personal life.  I struggle to find balance. But for a lot of other reasons I realize I don't have a future at my current job, and I need to move on.

Obviously the job market is hell right now, and it could be a while before I find something new. So while I look my challenge is to balance a busy job that takes well over 60 hours of my week with my own need to be healthy.

My biggest challenges are going to be:

  • Not snacking on the donuts and chips everyone brings in, especially when really stressed
  • Finding time to exercise
  • Remembering to take my thyroid medicine (I've slipped in the last few weeks)
  • Getting enough sleep


You can always count on family to take some awful pictures of you.  I cropped this one of me from a picture during my vacation. I can't make it any bigger, sorry, but you get the general idea. I'm leaving my face out of it because I want to stay somewhat anonymous on here.

Eeek. Thing is, at this weight - no pictures will be good pictures.  Every angle is a bad angle.  And every camera should be avoided. The worst is when someone says "but it's such a great pictures of you" and you're thinking "oh shit, do I really look this bad?"

Facebook makes it all so much more horrifying. Not only are people always taking pictures, but you can be sure it'll be on facebook the next morning with you tagged. I personally make it a policy to never tag people without their permission, and I wish others would have the same courtesy.  *sigh*

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Trek

Today was just fine as far as sticking to a good eating plan.  For the first few weeks I'll be eating higher fat and very low carbs as my body adjusts, without worrying about calories. It's strange for me to not worry about calories because I usually try to keep them to about 1400 a day. But that strictness has become increasingly difficult in recent months (everything went to hell when my job got super busy) and I know I just do better and feel better on low carb.

I went to Costco and picked up all the essentials. Eggs, babybell cheeses for snacks, lots of veggies, and a freezer that's a celebration of carnivory. Tomorrow will be prep work for week because work is a veritable minefield when it comes to eating right.

So for breakfast I had two scrambled eggs and three sausage links. Lunch was a big salad with grilled chicken. Dinner was a small ribeye steak and haricot verts. This will be typical for the next few weeks.

I also got to my neighborhood pool and did 30 laps. I love swimming - makes me feel so weightless.

Speaking of exercise, I wanted to share something that happened recently and made me realize that I really do need to focus on losing weight.

I visited family in Seattle last week and one of my relatives, remembering a thinner and more active Rose, planned an 8-mile "moderate" hike for us. Only "moderate" in the Pacific Northwest means "climbing a smallish mountain."  It was straight up a mountain with lots of steep switchbacks.

I am currently in such bad shape that I could barely make it - had to stop and catch my breath at the end of each switchback and was just dying out there. It was miserable and I was miserable for slowing my relative down.

It's the first time I can remember that my weight was more than a vanity issue, and actually affected my ability to do something I should enjoy doing.  I realized that for me, it was like carrying two large suitcases up a mountain - of course I am going to get tired and exhausted easily. I'm carry about 230 pounds on my 5'5" frame!

The other thing I noticed on this trip is that I'm pushing the boundaries of airplane seats. The seatbelt is no problem but I carry so much of my weight in my hips and butt that when I sit it just squishes to the sides and encroaches under the armrest.  I still fit, but I don't want to have to keep my hand on the armrest to keep it down and encroach on a neighbor's space. It makes me uncomfortable and I'm SURE it makes my seat-mate uncomfortable.

That and I just turned 31. I've been dealing with this for too long but I'm too young to have given up.  It's been way too long since I've been on a date and my weight is holding me back from really enjoying my life.

I know you can't lose weight until you're really ready. Well, I'm really ready.

Jumping in Headfirst

Good morning!  I'm Rose, and today I'm starting my journey of trying to lose about 100 pounds.  Over the next few weeks and months I'll be telling you more about how I got to be this size, and what I'm doing about it.

I just returned from vacation and I think I have everything I need to get started (vacation is definitely not the time to be started a new way of life).  I have a few months without any travel planned, so this is a great time to start focusing on building good habits with few interruptions.

I'll be posting every day - shine or rain, loss or gain.

I weighed in this morning - 228.2 pounds. It's always shocking when you are confronted with reality, but avoiding the scale isn't going to change it.  Some of that is vacation weight gain, but not more than a few pounds.  It's clearly time to make some lifestyle changes.

I'll be doing strict low-carb eating for the first few weeks to get things started.  Low carb just works best for my body. I'll explain that more later too.

For now - time to jump in head first, like this guy!