Sunday, December 26, 2010

A Very Merry Christmas

Our family had a wonderful Christmas celebration.  It began with a lovely Christmas Eve service surrounded by our extended family of neighbors and friends, followed by Christmas morning opening presents with three boys, three dogs and two cats--Santa was indeed very good to us.  A brunch of blueberrry pancakes with berries we picked over the summer was followed by a delicious turkey dinner.  The rest of our time has been spent napping, snacking, reading, playing wii, putting the dogs out, bringing the dogs in, shooing the cats off the counters, snacking some more, reading another book, and of course, napping.  I may soon get motivated enough to take the dogs for a walk.

Wishing all of you a restful and peaceful time.   

Monday, December 20, 2010

I'm Going Public

I'm going public. 

I need some accountability.

I need to fit in my skin again! 

For more years than I care to count, I have been battling with my weight.  There was a time when I was running 3 miles a day, going to the gym regularly, and even competed in small triathlons. 

circa 1990
 Starting now, I am going to be in charge of my health and fitness. I flip through magazines with articles about weight loss and there appears to be two categories: 

1) a miracle plan that will shed 20 pounds by summer/Christmas/back to school/whenever by walking/pilates/eliminating entire food groups/taking a miracle pill, or

2) a discussion on over-eating to fill some unmet emotional issue.  I guess I shouldn't rule out the idea that I'm really not as happy and content as I feel and that somewhere buried deep in my subconscious is the reason I'm overweight.  And that Oprah/Dr. Phil/Gillian Michaels can help me uncover it all, I'll lose 100 pounds, get a makeover and make it on the cover of Prevention Magazine. 

But I guess I see it a bit differently.  I have mentioned in other posts that I'm not an overthinker so here's how I see my situation...

I take in more calories than I burn!

So, if I want to shed some weight, I have to change the balance:  I either need to take in fewer calories and excercise the same amount, consume the same amount of calories and exercise more, or, and here's where I get really radical, take in fewer calories and exercise more!

I really just want to feel comfortable in my body again.  And, I want to run with Corey and Christine(and any other fabuolous Mom) when we are in Orlando in March. 

There, I said it.  It is now out there in the Blogosphere.  I want to hang out with the cool kids.

I read on other blogs the C25K thing.  It's a 9 week interval training plan that takes you from couch  potato (C) to running a 5K.  I also have an iPhone App called Lose It! that allows you to set your weight loss goal, track the food you've eaten, log exercise--and it calculates how many calories you can eat for the day, subtracts what you've eaten, adds calories if you've exercied and even tracks nutritional information.  I can use both the C25K and Lose It! on my iPhone--exercise and technology--why, it's got my name written all over it.  Now to just add the missing ingredient...doing it.

So, I started back at the gym two weeks ago.  I haven't lost an ounce but I'm starting to feel better.  My muscles are remembering and my lungs are starting to come back.  YAY!  I have to remind myself that I didn't get out of shape or pack on all these extra pounds in two weeks so I can't expect to lose it overnight.  Plus, I'm perimenopausal and have hypothroidism...not excuses, just reasons to stay focused.

I begin Week 3 today. 

My Goals:
1.  Feel better physically
2.  Run a 5k with Corey and Christine  when we're in Florida
3.  Lose 20 pounds

So, I'll share my successes and frustrations.  I welcome any words of encouragement, ideas for sticking with it, your success stories, training tips, and suggestions for really good work out music.

Friday, December 10, 2010

This Morning's Commute

So, I’m sitting at a red light this morning, heading to the gym before work, listening to Chris Tomlin’s new Christmas CD—Glory in the Highest.  As I’m singing along to the title track, I inch forward and notice a person standing at the end of the divider.  He’s dressed rather shabbily with baggy pants an open overcoat, sporting a long beard.  He’s holding a sign that reads: “Homeless and Unemployed, Please Help.”

I’ve seen people doing this many times at many different locations—mostly off highways at the bottom of the ramps at the traffic light—and the conventional (cynical) wisdom is is that these aren’t really homeless people but regular average people with an interesting (read “lazy”) approach to earning money.  My first thought is, “Hmmm, another scammer taking advantage of the Holiday Season and everyone’s giving spirit.”  

But then I really look at the person and the sign he is holding is shaking because he is shivering so hard—it’s 7:30 am and 40 F!!  Then, I realize I’m singing “Glory in the Highest” and I’m wondering if I am giving glory to God right now.   And the thought challenges me. Jesus’ words, “whatsoever you do to the least of these, you do unto me” are echoing in my head. 

Does anything really matter except that this man is standing in the middle of traffic on the coldest morning of the season so far, asking for help?  I don’t need to know his circumstances or motivations—he’s asking for help.  He’s standing in the street hoping strangers--busy, distracted, strangers--take a moment to notice him, to look at him and see the person, a fellow human being.  I wonder at the pride and embarrassment he has to swallow to stand there for everyone to see—begging.

Yes, he’s a stranger, but at that moment he has entered my universe and he has become my responsibility.  As my car inches close enough to reach him, I hand him my lunch, my Dunkin Donuts coffee, and some money.  I receive a smile, a thank you, and a God Bless You.  As I drive to the gym I am praying that this man has a warm place to go to and I'm thanking God because He has already blessed me.