Sunday, January 31, 2010

Basketball Diaries

I am a fairly competitive person.  And I love being a part of a team.  I was never really great at any sport but I enjoyed cheering on others, supporting people and working toward a common goal.  I never quite understood why some of the girls would cry after they lost a playoff game, for me, it was just that, a game.  I couldn't wait to give my son the same type of experience.

     My four year old son played in his first youth basketball game and my husband coached.  Most of the parents on the sidelines were like me, proud to be there, watching our sons run around in an extra large Lakers jersey (there were 5 kids with #24!).  We laughed when one of them forgot to dribble and imagined he was an all-star running back.  Or when one of the boys got a basket and stopped to pose for their mom's camera.  Too cute.

   Of course, there are the few parents that may ruin it for all of us...overzealous dad's trying to live vicariously through their sons or daughters, or the dad that insists on reffing the game even though there are already two adults/coaches on the court.  The father of one of the players was yelling at everyone else's kids -- that didn't go over very well with the rest of the parents.  I stood and watched as a coach and a dad yelled at each other because the man thought the coach should have let his son dribble the ball up the court.  It was a full blown argument and the saddest thing was that their children were standing RIGHT THERE listening to this nonsense.  I mean, they are FOUR for God's sake!  Really people?

     Luckily my son was oblivious to the drama and so were most of the kids.  He had FUN and he LOVED running around in a real live game with a jersey and a bunch of kids that are fairly aggressive like him.  He worked it out, he had a blast, he got in some exercise and he learned a few things about playing ball and being a part of a team.  Isn't that really what it's all about?

Those parents could learn a few things from their kids!

Friday, January 29, 2010

I Lied -The Honest Truth

  

     I'm running from the LAPD.  I lost my drivers license and spent over 2 and a half hours in line at the Los Angeles DMV last week.  When I filled out the application, the State of California wanted to know my weight.   I paused and took my sweet time answering.  Really? Is that even necessary?  After careful consideration, I lied.   But before I lied I contemplated how much to drop.  I really want to drop 40 pounds but that's a little obnoxious and a little obvious.  So I tried to compromise with myself.   I have to carry that damn thing around with me until I lose it again which could be years, so I had to make my answer good and fair, something better but something I could live up to.  Now, according to my new drivers license I weigh about 15 pounds less than I am today.  It's the truth I look forward to, does that count for anything? 

     I'm not sure why they need to know such personal information anyway.  I mean there's no line item or questioning for other physical flaws like "How many zits do you have?", "Do you have any hairy moles?" or "What percentage of your hair is gray?"  It's sort of been weighing on my conscience that I lied on a government application-and that's only because I want to be a good example to my kids.   It just gives me extra incentive to lose the 15 pounds so I won't have to look over my shoulder every time there are sirens or 5-0 nearby and have to explain to my kids why mommy is running from Johnny Law.

     15 pounds...do you think I can accomplish this before it comes in the mail?

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Breathing room in Park City




    It's important to take time for yourself, a necessity for your mental health.  Well, at least it's true for me.  Don't get me wrong, I am OBSESSED with my kids but I recognize when we need a break from each other, when I need a little time to escape and just breathe.  It is VITAL for my family and for me, that I step away to collect myself.  As a mom is there is no real "vacation time" built into this 24/7 gig, and many of us moms utilize our free time to do the grocery shopping, clean out a closet, or sometimes we're lucky enough to have time to buy ourselves some new underwear or a new pair of shoes.  But it's a good thing when you can really get away.

     I spent the last 5 days at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah with 'Skinny Sister'.  I truly escaped from my 'job'.  I skied Park City -- the mountain air and the fresh powder were just what I needed.  It was both therapeutic and exhilarating heading down the mountain and I felt at one with nature, temporarily without a care in the world.   Plus, it was the best skiing I've ever done -tons of trails at various levels.  After a full day, my butt felt tighter and my thighs, my knees and my calves were sore, but it was well worth it.  Halfway down the mountain I stopped to get a beer and called my husband (who was in a meeting) to see if I could stay an extra day.  And he said YES!  I really love that guy. Typically, I’m ready to get back to the kids after a few days but I needed just one more day.  

     Besides skiing, I spent time in one of the Marriott Mountainside's six hot tubs and drank fine wine at the bar.  I didn't make my bed or anyone else's.  We watched films, partied and had some entertaining celebrity sightings.  Although I was sidelined for a bit with altitude sickness (we were at 7K feet above sea level), that didn’t stop me.  We attended the NFC Playoff party and sat next to the infamous host Terrell Owens, Steve Nash as well as my new boyfriend, quarterback of the Green Bay Packers, Aaron Rodgers (don't tell my husband).  Who knew that guy looked so good under that helmet?  We got the chance to see these four films where the cast, writers, directors and producers were present for Q & A: 

Winning Time: Reggie Miller Vs. The New York Knicks - One of the documentary films in ESPN's "30 for 30" series.  It is really entertaining even if you're not a fan of the NBA.  Director Dan Klores makes it easy to get caught up in the rivalry between the Indiana Pacers and the New York Knicks in the mid-90's.  The characters- Miller, Spike Lee, John Starks and Patrick Ewing are all controversial and comical as they duke it out in the 94-95 playoffs.

Holy Rollers  A film based on true events of the 1990's, as Hasidic Jewish teens get wrapped up in trafficking Ecstasy from Amsterdam.  The film stars Jesse Eisenberg (Adventureland, The Squid and the Whale) and Justin Bartha (The Hangover, National Treasure).
 
Skateland- A coming of age story set in East Texas.  Ritchie, a 19 year old skating rink manager must deal with dramatic events including the closing of the rink and is forced to examine his life.  Although we've all seen this type of story before, actor Shiloh Fernandez brings it to life, is very easy on the eyes (a cross between Joaquin Phoenix and Emile Hirsch) and is one to watch.

The Extra Man- Based on the novel by Jonathan Ames.  A lonely young man (Paul Dano) moves to Manhattan and rents a room from an eccentric older man (Kevin Kline) who is an escort to wealthy elderly women.  Chaos ensues with a cast of quirky characters.  Also stars John C. Reilly and Katie Holmes.  Katie brought nothing to the film on screen or off when she was questioned about her experience.  Written and Directed by Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini (American Splendor).

     Some moms I know choose to read a good book, hit the spa or take a trip to the winery with the girls.  Other women just sit in a dark movie theatre by themselves to decompress.  It doesn't have to cost a lot, but the value of being alone can be very high.  It even gives my kids the chance to really spend time with dad.  They are THRILLED to have him doing the things I would typically do - drop them off at school, give baths and go to ballet class.  It gives him a chance to bond with the little ones and form their own special relationship.

     I came back with a greater appreciation and a fresh perspective and attitude for parenting.  Last night the kids sat and looked at me intently as I explained how I skied and what I did and we are now collecting change to go on a ski trip together.  We had a blast catching up on the past few days.  I am refreshed and back in action.

How do you take a mental break from your family or your job? What helps you to decompress?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Carbs, Denim and Boots that were made to walk in.



So, the next time I'm feeling blue I'm not going to eat.  I will steer clear of all carbs and chocolate and cheese.

Please quote me.

     After weighing in at Weight Watchers I realized my "bad mood" set me back a whopping 4.2 lbs!  I single-handedly erased all of the progress I have made over the the past two months - since November 30, 2009 to be exact.  Well, I did have some help from a grilled cheese sandwich or two, a couple slice of pizza (with whole wheat crust), a cupcake and some fries.  Plus, I abandoned working out.  But 4.2 lbs in 10 days? Terrible.   That was frustrating AND embarrassing.   In fact, it really just pissed me off.  Of course, I knew it was coming.  My jeans were just a little bit snugger and my face just felt a little bit rounder this week.

     I went straight to the gym for an hour long bike ride and burned about 350 calories - a drop in the bucket.


     I proceeded to do some shopping for my trip today and the only thing more annoying than trying on jeans (20 pairs of jeans to be exact) and finding out nothing fits, is having your two year old with you.  Don't ask me why I even tried.  The answer is, because I have to bring him.  Time is very limited and I do what I can when I can.  While I was knee deep in my jeans, trying to hoist them up, the little guy would open the door (yes I let him out of his little car/stroller thingy, I know, I know).  Then he'd start screaming when I closed the door and ram his car into the walls.

   I finally gave up and headed to the shoe department to find boots.  Here was my stipulation.  They had to be wide enough to fit my gigantic calves.  And I won't wear them outside of my jeans. That look is NOT for me and I couldn't fit a pair over my jeans even if I wanted to.  I understand it's the fashion now, and good for the girls with the skinny legs. But I'm telling you, if you have big thighs or calves, or a butt, it does NOT look good-no matter what your so called friends tell you.  I'm taking a pass on that trend.  I started having a hissy fit and called 'Skinny Sister' to complain.

I said "When I see you at Sundance, whatever you do, don't ask me why I don't have more than one pair of dark jeans.  I will FREAK out on you."

"And I don't care if you tried to get me to give away the ugly black shoe boots I have.  They are all I've got as of now."

She was mildly amused but I would say she was more irritated with me.  Finally, I called over a very nice salesman and told him my dilemma.  I said "C'mon, I know I'm not the only woman in here asking for boots that will fit their calves".  I looked around and noticed about 5 women standing around and they were all MUCH larger than me.  He understood and said "Lemme see what I can do".

That nice man brought out 6 pairs of boots and pair #2 worked like magic.  I got myself a pair of black Marc Fisher leather boots.  I love them.  They love me.  I said "SOLD", and I didn't care what they cost.  I got to the register and found out they were only $65!  The Lord works in mysterious ways, I tell you.  So, I might be rockin' the same jeans everyday but I have some kick-ass boots that FIT!

Needless to say, I am back in the saddle ready to move in the right direction or at least get back to start.  I'm packing my gym clothes for Sundance too so if I don't hit the slopes at least I will get some cardio in.  Wish me luck!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sundance Bound


  

     I need an emergency thigh workout.  I'm heading to the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah and besides watching fabulous new films and star-gazing, I'm hoping to hit the slopes.  Of course, that's only if I'm not hungover.  I'm planning to cut loose a bit.  I'm not bringing the kids or even my skinny hubby.  Skinny Sister and I are going to paint the town red since she is the Associate Producer of an ESPN film called Winning Time:  Reggie Miller Vs. The New York Knicks that will be screened there.  I'm so proud of her!  I haven't skied in years and I'm not sure this body is ready for it.  Skiing requires those muscles that you didn't know you had.  Plus, I need to pack all the gear.  I'm pretty scared but I know it will feel good once I'm out there - soft powder, wind in my face, an adrenaline rush, heading downhill, faster, faster, heading toward a mogul...okay, I'm getting really nervous.  I'm hoping I don't chicken out and end up in the lodge drinking all day.  But is that so bad?

Anyone have a good thigh workout? Anyone ever been to Sundance or skied in Park City?  I want to hear from you!

PS: I'm hoping to Twitter all the action from there. Sign up to receive my tweets if you're interested!

Say no to crack


     
filmoreboot.jpg     Having trouble finding the perfect jeans that don't give you a "muffin top" or that aren't so low cut, your husband thinks you are the plumber?  Thanks to one of IAGFI's fabulous readers I have been turned on to jeans that are designed for curvier or normal sized women.  In early 2009, Magic Johnson's wife, Cookie Johnson, partnered with Michael Glasser, founder of Seven For All Mankind, Citizens of Humanity and Rich and Skinny jeans to create fabulous jeans.  With a silk waistband, comfortable, amazing European fabrics and a fair amount of stretch, Johnson and Glasser designed jeans so that girls who are not built like a little boy can look good too. 

  Women who were wearing a size 8 or 10 were complaining that they couldn't find jeans to fit them, and like me couldn't get other brands up past their thighs.  Cookie struggled for many years to find a pair to fit her and would wear a long shirt to cover up the parts that pinched her.  This line fits from 0-18 (or 24-38) and is targeted toward women whose average size is a 12-14 along with the skinnier girls.  They come in "boyfriend", "straight", "boot cut", "high-waist trouser" and "legging" or "skinny" jeans.  The jeans are priced between $140 and $200, which is the norm for designer jeans.  I can tell you, I would pay a pretty price for the perfect pair.  It's the foundation of my wardrobe and really dictates how I feel about myself.


     Oprah is a HUGE fan and has touted them many times.  The are available at Nordstrom, Neimen Marcus and plenty of sites online.  I might have to give them a go.  Has anyone purchased a pair?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Goofiest Girl I know.

Rachael Wilcox-Pereira

     I want to give a shout out to my high school friend, Rachel Wilcox-Pereira and her show of strength and agility.  She finished Goofy's Race and a Half Challenge in Orlando, Florida on January 9th and 10th.  It's wasn't just goofy...it was insane.  Rachel participated in a half marathon on Saturday with a time of 2:45 and a full marathon on Sunday with a time of 4:53.  She raised almost $2,000 for the Susan G. Komen society for breast cancer and ran in memory of her aunt Diane (De) Wilcox who passed away October 23, 2008 after a 10 year battle with breast cancer.  Before she passed, De's coworkers arranged a family trip to Disney World where they took their last vacation together.



Rachel finished this amazing race and raised a significant amount of money, but there is still no cure.  So please feel free to donate here and help the cause.  Rachel is so driven, she was actually ready to get up and run the next day.  She has always been an inspiration to me with her voracious spirit and ability to give.  She is trying to lure me into running the Disneyland half marathon in September. We'll see!

CONGRATULATIONS RACHEL.  YOU INSPIRE ME AND MANY OTHERS.

DONATE HERE

Rain, Rain, Don't Go Away

  



     It's raining in LA.  And we need it.  Well, I need it.  Since I've been feeling this incredible bout of depression, I feel like it's just what the doctor ordered.   Just like the plants and the grass need the rain, so do I.  I need an excuse to stay inside and be allowed to feel bitter and moody, and even cry a little bit.  I need a day, or actually a week, when I can drink coffee all day and wrap myself up in my light green, snuggly and very cute BCBG sweater I've been wanting to wear and never get the chance.  I want to curl up with a good book and avoid public places and hibernate inside with my family.  Snuggling up on the couch and watching cartoons with my kids is like my Prozac.  I want to eat REAL comfort food, not the lowfat kind.  Surprisingly, this episode of depression is met with appetite loss, which is a bit foreign to me, but, hell, I'll take it.

   While LA is a fabulous place to be and to live, it's not conducive to being in a really crappy mood.  Sometimes I need the rain so I don't feel bad about not having my kids outside, at the park, or walking along the beach.  I feel a tremendous amount of guilt when it's beautiful outside and my only excuse for not having a playdate at the park is "I just don't feel like it".  It's not good enough in my book so I drag myself out and put on my 'happy face' and crash when I get home.  Occasionally on a sunny day, I shut all the curtains and blinds and have to pretend it's a shitty day because I think we as humans, or at least, we as mommy's need a rainy day.  We can't be full of joy and sunshine all the time!

     Protecting our right to have a guilt free, "mental health" day is as important to us moms as going to the gym or cooking healthy meals.  I know it makes me a better mom once I have been able to regroup, rest and reinvigorate.  Then I bounce back.  I am usually ready to go again, full-force, and life becomes all about the kids, once again.

     Do you enjoy a BAD MOOD DAY?

  



  

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Damn him:What happens in Vegas



I just sat down after a long day of feeding kids, lots of dishes, going to the park, cleaning up, playing Lincoln Logs, a couple load of laundry and listening to the kids put on a Taylor Swift/Jonas Brothers concert.  I am trying to avoid the left over pizza and cupcakes so I am having a glass of wine.  Meanwhile my husband is sending me texts from PRIME Steakhouse at the BELLAGIO in VEGAS.

Dear Skinny Husband,

Yes I am jealous about your fabulous steak dinner and bottles of expensive wine and the fact that you are at a restaurant where I could wear heels and there are no high chairs or chicken fingers. Save it.  What happens in Vegas should stay there.

Love, Me.

Motivation or Humiliation?

Patient Standing on Weight Scale

My good friend Yolanda passed this article on to me.  Apparently a floor full of Weight Watchers members collapsed....Oh my...

Thoughts?

WEIGHT WATCHERS FLOOR COLLAPSES UNDER DIETERS

BIG FAT CUPCAKES



"Mommy, will you make us Big Fat Cupcakes?" My 4 year old son said to me yesterday afternoon.

"I don't know..." I said, secretly wanting to oblige.

"It's easy."  He pleaded looking up at me with his long eyelashes and bright blue eyes. "Just make some and stick some ice cream in there."

Um, okay.

I knew I had a box of Duncan Heinz vanilla cake mix in the cabinet that has been lonely and looking for some attention from me.  We still had a few hours to kill before bedtime and we needed an activity.

I surrendered after only a few seconds "I'm in. Let's do it." It was going to be a warm and fuzzy family affair and I wanted to bond with my kids over baked goods.  Plus, I would just have a bite or two.

I cracked the eggs and put in the oil.  My three year old daughter did the mixing and then almost bit off my son's head when he wanted to help.  They got into a fist pounding, knock-down fight over who was going to stir.  Then my 21 month old got into the mix and stuck his fingers in the batter and all over his face.  It actually would have been cute if it the older two weren't being so annoying.  I was regretting my decision.

Once they were in the oven, and the smell of sweetness consumed the house, I was glad I had given in.  My house smelled like a home...full of love and cupcakes.  We frosted them, designed them and half of it got on the floor.  Instead of a big fat cupcake we made minis and regular sized and the kids didn't mind.  I did indulge - I had 2 minis and probably a bite of the third.  The kids had fun.  And baking them brought us together.  That's worth a few calories in my book and I'll take a pound for the experience.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Snowball Effect



You're down in the dumps, your immune system suffers, your life just gets busier and then BAM! You get sick.  Things just snowball and you are headed downhill.  You just have to STOP what you are doing, RELAX, and take things down a level.

My body is officially out of commission and I have resigned from the gym for a bit.  It hurts to move, much less bike, run or lift.  Meanwhile, my cute husband is on a "business trip" in fabulous Las Vegas.  Good for him.  I'm alone with all three over-active kids this weekend and I am thoroughly overwhelmed.  My awesome younger brother and his beautiful fiancee stepped up to the plate today to help me out, before they too headed out to fabulous Las Vegas (did I mention I feel a streak of jealousy?)  Together, we got the kids to the bike park so at least they could get some exercise, and we took them out to lunch so I can hole up in the house for the rest of the weekend without any guilt.  After playtime, they all sat in the car as I stood in line at the pharmacy behind 12 people to pick up a prescription.  Everyone and their brother was there sniffling, sneezing and aching, just like me.  It was sort of gross.  I purchased six different potential remedies for my multi-dimensional ailments hoping at least one will work.  If all else fails I plan to fix up a "hot toddy" with the Jack Daniels in hallway closet.  Works every time.


Needless to say, I am not worried about losing weight today.  We went to lunch and I got the chicken noodle soup.  And the turkey burger...with cheese.  Oh, and some fries and a diet coke.  And it worked, I felt just a little bit better.  I'm too sick to remember how many kids I have much less worry about some dumb Weight Watchers Points values.  I'll be getting back into the swing of things as soon as my body will allow.  I'm trying to respect it and it's telling me to SLOW down, to REST and I think it might be saying "Have a bowl of ice cream if you want."  Maybe I just need a trip to fabulous Las Vegas!

A Big Thank you to those of your who voted for I Am Going For It as one of the top 50 "Best Mommy Blogs" on babble.com.  The blog is now #97!!!  To vote, please click below and hit control "f" to find I Am Going for It and click on "Like this Blog".

VOTE HERE!





Here's the damage from yesterday:

Breakfast:  Unflavored protein shake with 5 strawberries
Lunch:  Chicken breast with julienne vegetables
Snack:  Bite of my kid's grilled cheese, edamame
Dinner:  Small bit of each:  Salad with duck, Szechwan Eggplant, Chicken and asparagus, Tofu and pan-fried noodles, 2 glasses of wine.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Mental Meltdown


     During the emotional events of the last few days, being sick and having sick kids, I have lost my momentum in counting my Weight Watchers Points.  In the midst of my mental meltdown, I ate ice cream.  I strayed from the no protein with carbs rule and had a little cheese and some wheat.  It's just a fact, food makes me feel better.  There's no doubt it's easy to self-medicate with food. It sets off endorphins, it comforts and sooths the soul. When you're stuck in the house with sick kids it's the easiest remedy. I have been trying to find other ways to find comfort but none compare.  Both my trainer and I are sick and until we are better I keep busy by writing, reading, talking to friends, organizing a drawer, doing laundry and straightening up the house (which always gets destroyed within 10 minutes of me doing it).  So here's the truth about how I've been dealing...

Wednesday:

Breakfast: water with lemon, 2 probiotics, 2 eggs wheat toast (6)
Lunch: Mcdonald’s grilled chicken snack wrap (6), 2 chicken mcnuggets I stole from my son. (2.5), Diet coke
Wildwood Probiotic Soy yogurt  (3)
Weight Watchers Roasted Almond Sensation bar (2)
Coffee
Tea
I should have stoppped there.

Dinner:  Indonesian Style Tempeh (4) on a bed of kale and lettuce with avocado (2), Sweet potato fries (4) from the Veggie Grill
Dessert:  1 small brownie bite, 1 small carrot cake bite (2) few bites of light ice cream (2) 2 glasses of wine (4)
I wanted some ice cream so I bought some, tasted 3 bites and threw it in the freezer.  I haven't touched it since.

I ate about 38 points. I only get 25...not so good.


Thursday:

Breakfast: 2 eggs (4)
Lunch:  1/2 turkey sandwich on wheat roll with havarti cheese, lettuce, tomato (4), 1 meatball (3)
Baked lays (2), 1/4 cup of macaroni salad  (3)

I fixed my kids dinner and picked at their whole wheat noodles, meatballs and corn (3)

Dinner: 2 oz. chicken breast with julienned vegetables 2 tbsp. of picatta sauce, piece of bread, 2 ricotta filled pasta pillows, 2 pieces vegetable basil ravioli, salad with balsamic vinegarette.  (8?), Wine (4)

About 31 points total.

    After not eating wheat for awhile and then carbing up I felt awful.  After the sandwich on Thursday my body felt sluggish and I craved more sugar.  I feel like I can make it through half the day and then I lose it.  Or I make the right meal choices but pick throughout the day.  I swear, it's because my kids don't eat their meal and I feel like it can't go to waste.  I have to learn to just chuck it.  Once the kids and I feel better I will get back in the gym. I miss my workouts and walking and getting the endorphins pumping the healthy way. This is just a bump in the road. I'll be back!



Wednesday, January 13, 2010

After Effects


  


    Yesterday I couldn't stop crying, I was pale and felt like I was going to pass out.  My body shook and ached from head to toe, I had a headache stemming from the back of my head, and all over fatigue.  I wanted to stay in bed all day and I felt socially anxious and was nervous about venturing far from the house.   It felt like the depression I felt postpartum, combined with the sensitivity of PMS and the sadness that you get when you have a seriously broken heart.  After calling a few amazing people I love to share my feelings, I realized pretty quickly that I was suffering some type of post-traumatic stress from my son's seizure on Friday.  Even though it was a good five days later, my body still manifested all of those feelings and released them all at once.

      Sure, I do recognize the baby is fine, he's ALIVE.  He's on antibiotics and is happy.  I have a lot to be thankful for in life, I am extremely blessed and lucky.  I totally get that.  Then why the tears?  I felt really guilty about that.  I tried to analyze the situation - I faced head on the fact that my child's life could be taken away in an instant, I thought my baby boy was gone.  I have spent almost 5 years building up my confidence as a parent and I feel like that one instant took all of that confidence away.  The last couple days I felt like I was just handed three little kids, like I had to start all over re-learning how to be a good mom.  It was if I had been juggling three balls, I dropped one and they all came tumbling down.  I can't really figure out how to pick them back up.

     My babysitter came yesterday, as she does every Tuesday and I ventured out to do my errands but I couldn't stop the crying.  My husband offered to meet me for lunch and I called a few good friends who recommended psychologists to talk things out.  I went to my regular acupuncture appointment and the doctor could see my pain as soon as he entered the room.  He was happy to help, and gave me a treatment that helped me immensely.  It calmed me down and relaxed me so I could think more clearly.  My sweet friend met me to get a massage and sit in the steam room for a bit and just plain relax.  My husband put the kids to bed and my friend and I were able to have a conversation without children screaming at us, we got dinner and a couple glasses of wine.  It was good to move away from the kids for a bit.  I could collect myself, clear my mind and get my sanity back.  I was able to sleep well and much of my pain had escaped.  I still recognize that talking to someone is a very good idea, not all the symptoms are gone, but I can at least move through my day today.

    It's amazing how connected our body and minds are.  I think many of us tend to concentrate on the physical ailments and only then do we deal with what is really bothering us.  It was when the physical ailments hit me that I decided I needed to do something, otherwise I just tried to tell myself to "toughen up", "get over it", realize you are lucky", "don't be so selfish".  I can't imagine how a returning soldier, or someone who has been something much worse copes without plenty of counseling and drugs.  There should not be any shame or stigma in admitting that you need help when you are in pain, physical or emotional.

     Now that I feel a little better, I will build my confidence back up and take things slow.  This might mean retreating from social events for a bit and doing only what I can handle right now.   It helps to call on good friends and family, try to relax and enlist the help of a professional.  Gathering myself, feeling better and getting my physical and emotional strength back is most important because it will allow me the confidence and ability to be a better mother.

     Have you or anyone you know dealt with something like this?


As promised here's what I ate yesterday:
(I didn't count points or worry about this too much)

Breakfast: 1/2 cup of coffee
Lunch: sushi, 3 gyoza, 2 oz. sake
Tea
Dinner:  Chips and salsa, Pan seared Pepita Halibut, smashed artichoke hearts, sauteed spinach, 2 glasses of wine,

Monday, January 11, 2010

The good, the bad and the salty...




As promised, here is what I ate today, the good, the bad and the salty...
(Weight Watchers Points in parentheses-I get 25 per day)


Here goes...


Upon waking:  Hot water with lemon, 2 probiotics
Breakfast: 2 eggs and water  (2)
Snack: 1 cup Hot and Sour soup (2), 4 Wheat Thins (.5)
Grazing:  A bite of the chicken and cheese I made for the kids that they didn't eat (okay, more than one bite) (3)
Lunch:  1 cup Progresso Soup Light Vegetable with extra veggies thrown in with an ounce of chicken (3)
4 oz Orange Juice (1), 4 Wheat thins (.5)
Snack: 1 apple with tsp of peanut butter (2), tea

I got really hungry about HERE.
Had a couple bites of the chicken fingers (natural and organic :)) and mac and cheese I served my kids for dinner (2)
A few rice chips (3)

I'm not really supposed to be eating wheat but I was REALLY craving carbs today.

Dinner:  1 cup Rice Expressions Whole Grain Brown Rice Organic Rice Pilaf with mixed vegetables (3), 1 glass of wine (2)

Total 24 Points

Salad is not comfort food.


  

     I don't care what anyone says, when you're not feeling well, are down in the dumps, or just plain cold, salad does not make you feel better.  I'm suffering from the first two today and I yearn for a grilled cheese sandwich with tomato soup, spaghetti and meatballs or a hot pizza.  I'm trying to get creative with what foods I can use in place of those fan faves.  The Low-Sodium Progresso soups are decent and zero Weight Watchers Points per serving (1/2 a can).  This week I also baked chicken and lightly sauteed some veggies.  I'm planning to throw them into some low-sodium vegetable broth to make my own chicken and veggie soup.  I've also made Gluten-free pasta (it's not that bad, I swear), combined with marinara sauce and chicken meatballs that my mom and dad turned me on to.  They got them at Costco.

     There are some good options for healthy comfort foods but it does take some thought and some preparation.  I tend to associate CHEESE with comfort - macaroni and cheese, pizza, lasagna, grilled cheese, etc.  but I really need to veer away from those things if I'm going to be successful this year.

Any recommendations on low-fat comfort foods.  I'm looking for any of the following:

vegetarian options
meals that have no wheat
meals that do not combine protein and carbs

Thanks!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Size Does Matter



  

     Did you know that people underestimate what we eat each day by 30-50%? That can be up to 1,000 calories a day!  And I'm not just talking about a cheeseburger and fries.  I think we do it with salads and dressings and too much food in general.  We also tend to overestimate how hard we work out.  I actually attended a Weight Watchers meeting on Saturday.  I've been going for so long, about 16 months so I got very complacent about it.  I'd stroll in, weigh myself and leave because I had the baby with me and I was afraid that people would get mad he was there.  The Saturday meeting was a treat because I could go and actually listen and I was reminded about how important WRITING DOWN WHAT YOU EAT can be when you are dieting.  I originally wanted to use the blog to document my meals but it seems so boring and tedious.
Free Bonus! Weight Watchers Easy Measure 3 Piece Stainless Steel Serving Set
  Starting tomorrow I'm hoping to write down everything again - both workouts and food.  I'm going back to the basics to see what I'm actually eating...I'm counting all the little bites of kiddie food too.  I want to get back to focusing on portion control.  I think I'm doing it right most days but your memory doesn't always serve you correctly in these situations.  I also bought myself the Weight Watchers Easy Measure Serving Set.  It's stainless steel and they are pre-measured for 1 cup, 1/2 cup and 1/4 cup servings.


Pleas feel free to document your meals here too.  It will be fun and it might be interesting to see what we're all eating and learn from each other and be HONEST, we all make mistakes!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A State of Emergency




    Yesterday afternoon I found my 21 month old baby in his crib, burning up with a high fever, limp, with his eyes rolling into the back of his head.  His arms shook rapidly and he seemed almost possessed, unable to wake up.   I ran to a neighbors house and called 911.  The ambulance came and took us to the emergency room where the doctor told me he was having a febrile seizure which is brought on by a fever.  When I put the baby down at 12:30 p.m. he had no fever, just a stuffy nose - I didn't see it coming.  It was one of the most frightening experiences of my life and although it is fairly common, it is horrifying to see your child so weak and helpless.  Today, my little guy is back to his old self and his siblings got him some shiny new CARS to make him feel better.  We are still on the lookout for any symptoms and are keeping a watchful eye on him.  My emotions have caught up to me and I cried a lot today.  When a parent deals with that type of stress it's amazing how our bodies just go into autopilot or fight or flight mode.

     While we were in the emergency room, I laid with my child and listened as several patients were treated.  The man in the hallway was being admitted because he had Diabetes and Heart Disease.  The man across the hall was seemingly on drugs, was cursing because he had a catheter in,  and he kept pulling up the covers, showing me his penis.  The older lady next to us was born in 1923, she broke her hip and was also losing her mind.  She repeated the same unidentifiable word for two and a half hours.  I said a prayer for her dear husband who told the nurse his wife does that all the time.  I can't even imagine.  My husband and I listened to all of these horrific stories and were both so thankful that we are young and healthy not affected by disease or addiction.  We agreed that it gave us the motivation to take good care of ourselves - both our bodies and our minds - and that it is just as important to keep your mind active and engaged, reading and learning new things.

     Despite my complaints about my weight, I am very thankful for my health.  In fact, I got some fabulous news today from Weight Watchers.  I lost 3 lbs. this week for a total of 26 lbs since I started.  I was SHOCKED because on Tuesday, I weighed in 4 lbs heavier than last week.  I'm sure the stress had something to do with it!

Friday, January 8, 2010

You've got to bag it up


 

     For the new year I purchased a beautiful, new, hot pink  Nike Varsity Girl Duffel Bag complete with various pockets - one for my IPhone,  one for my jewelry (or lack thereof) and my water bottle and a side compartment for my hot pink flip flops.  With my old bag, I used to just throw everything in and there weren't any pockets, so my keys scratched my sunglasses and cell phone and I could never find my parking ticket.  I feel like such a pro now, strutting into the gym, and I'm actually organized.  It's one of those 'must have' products that allow you to feel the part of athlete...and it was only $35.  If I were Oprah, it would be on my list.  I got mine at Sports Authority and I even bought one for my 'Skinny Sister'!

     What products make you feel like a pro?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

When Push comes to Shove


  

     Popcorn. Tortilla chips.  Even a brownie.  Last night I made cod and halibut with peppers and vegetables and baked it but during the 20 minutes it was baking, I began not only pushing but SHOVING all sorts of food into my mouth.  I didn't even sit.  I stood at the counter and proceeded to eat all the goodies in the house.  I had a difficult day, sort of emotional and I definitely ate to feel better.  My daughter and her friend had a playdate and I served them grilled cheese.  Whatever my daughter didn't finish went directly in my mouth.  By the time my healthy dinner was ready I was stuffed and disgusted but I felt like I should eat the healthy food...so I did that too.  When my husband got home I told him about my adventures in eating.  He just scoffed and shook his head.  "What will your fans say?"  he joked.  We sat down to watch a movie and I grabbed the last brownie and my dear hubby said "really?"  I answered him "really."  I figured I was already pushing it, why not cap it the night off with a sweet treat?  I didn't feel like having anyone tell me what to do.  I fell so far off the wagon but I really, truly needed it.  It made me feel good, even just for a minute. It's better than crack or shots of vodka, right?

I'm back on the wagon today.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Killer Apps for Abs


    
     I just got a new iPhone and I'm OBSESSED with it.  Some of the apps I downloaded have literally changed my life - Redlasar, Shazam, Pandora...just to name a few.  To stay focused on my goals I added Shape Magazine's workout app - Shape-LBD (Little Black Dress) by PumpOne which provides exercises for strapless dresses, calves and any body part you would bear wearing that cute little dress.  I also downloaded Shape Abs to tone my tummy.  I love Shape Magazine and often want to do the workouts that are featured each month.  I feel like a real dork walking around the gym with my magazine open...with my trusty iPhone I'll be much sleeker and cooler :)

     Do you know of any other killer apps that I can get (preferably for free) that will help me reach my goals?  With the Consumer Electronics Show starting tomorrow maybe there's something new on the horizon?

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Case of the Missing Gingerbread Roof


  

     "Mom, what happened to our gingerbread house?" my four and three year old asked in almost perfect unison.

They interrogated each over who took a bite out of the roof.  "Was it dad?" they asked.

"Nope",  I answered and allowed them to continue accusing one another.

Finally the light bulb went on.  "You???" they asked incredulously.

I actually thought about denying it.  I opened my mouth but no words came out.  I just nodded my head.

"Moooom!"  My son said.

     After a bedtime routine that extended for 3 hours last night, I wanted a reward.  Anything to make me feel better about being taken advantage of.  I was suckered into scaring away monsters, putting band aids on fake cuts, allowing people to sit on the toilet far too long, delivering water to a parched child and reading four books.  I looked around the kitchen to find something sweet to eat.  I checked the freezer, no ice cream.  I checked the cabinet where I hid the halloween candy.  It was all gone -- I threw it all away.  I realized that my house is free of candy or chocolate temptations...except for the damn Gingerbread house.  I gently tore a piece off but the roof started to cave in.  I nervously turned it around but the candy began to fall off.  I was tempted to throw it all away but the kids had asked me several times if they could have some and I promised it would be today.

     I got caught.  Pretty embarrassing.  Today I admitted my faults to my acupuncturist who just laughed at me.  Maybe that's why I weighed in a whopping FOUR pounds heavier.  I asked him what "sweet" things I could have, he said "Stevia".  Really? Stevia? That's it?  Not even ON anything?  I think maybe he didn't quite understand my question so I said.  "How 'bout a cookie?".  Again he just laughed and shook his head no.  Seriously, where did those pounds come from?  Besides the bite of the house I was REALLY freaking good this week.  I didn't have wine every night like usual, I ate very well, I did a good amount of cardio this week, ran 2 miles yesterday and worked out really hard with my trainer on lower body exercises this morning.  I still feel as big as a gingerbread house!

I stopped at Whole Foods and got the best of the best ingredients to make whole, protein and veggie filled organic meals this week.  Let's try this again...

Monday, January 4, 2010

No love for the "fatties"




Have you seen the article on CNN.com about the dating website beautifulpeople.com and it's ban against 'ugly' people?  Apparently they kicked people off the site for packing on the pounds during the holidays. OUCH!  Love hurts....check it out!

Dating Site Expels 'Fatties'

Thoughts? Comments?

Manic Monday


  

     It's the first week of the new year and I thought, I really truly believed, I had it all together.  My kids were bathed last night in preparation for the new week, clothes laid out, we even got up on time.  But once things were in motion around 7 a.m., I felt about as put together as the young girls on MTV's "Teen Mom".  My four year old was acting like a pre-menstrual 16 year old throwing a complete  hissy fit because I wouldn't let him watch his show, apparently I wasn't listening to him and he refused to get dressed.  My three year old daughter stood nearby, all put together in her new GAP outfit, taunting her brother for acting like a baby.  Meanwhile the baby only wanted to be held, which made getting dressed a bit difficult.  So much for having it all together in the new year.

     So, I didn't get to do my morning routine of my hot water and lemon to start my engine, I had 2 sips of the soy latte my sweet husband brought me from Starbucks.  I didn't even get to eat breakfast.  I know, I know, it's the most important meal of the day...that is, unless you are a mom trying to keep your sanity.  Plus, I had to pack my kids their healthy lunch.  I pulled up to the school in my sweats prepared to work out after dropping the kids off.  How is it that some of those moms look so put together by 9:00 a.m.?  And did I mention they are all so skinny?  I did get a chance to run and sweat out the stress of the morning.  I ran a little over 2 miles and then jetted off to My Gym with the baby.  My sweet friend made me a healthy lunch, otherwise, I think I would have come home and chowed down on a frozen pizza or demolished the gingerbread house that is still on my counter.  Forget the Chinese herbs my acupuncturist gave me or the supplements I was supposed to take per my nutritionist.  There was no fitting that stuff in today.  As I always say, "I'm just doing my best", trying to remain sane and calm is the objective today and I got in my 30 minutes of exercise.  Thanks to my good friend I had a least one healthy meal.  I just hope I can make it through the rest of the day without "rewarding" myself.  Wish me luck!!!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Denim Blues


True Religion Billy in Dark Vintage   Yesterday I went to the mall ready to drop mad cash on a new pair of dark, designer jeans.  I felt like Julia Roberts in "Pretty Woman", prepared to charge up a storm but I just wasn't able to spend the money.  I tried on several pairs of the top brands -- Seven For All Mankind,  Hudson, True Religion, and Joe's Jeans.  I pulled and pried and pushed and shoved my legs into these denim disasters but NOTHING fit.  My disillusion of having thin legs and my miscalculation of the foreign size chart was immediately apparent and I was thrust into reality.  I was crestfallen that I won't start the year off right with the perfect pair of jeans which could  serve as the base for all my cute outfits in the new decade.  The closest I came was a pair of Joe's honey bootfit curvy jeans - I could at least get those up to my waist.  I think they used the 10 year old boy next door as a model when they designed these tiny little pants.  I don't know if I'll ever be that small!  I'm going to look at this as MOTIVATION and keep working out, focusing on the bottom half of my body as well as my nemesis, the stomach area.  I'm destined to rock the perfect pair!
Any advice on jeans that fit the "curvier" girls?

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Butterflies



You've got a GUT feeling about someone, you've got that sinking feeling, or you've got butterflies in your stomach around that cute guy...you are probably on to something.

Many people don't realize that your belly is like your SECOND BRAIN, a term coined by Dr. Michael D. Gershon, with over 100 billion neurons (over HALF the neurons in our bodies) which signals our bodies to stress.   These nerve cells line the digestive tract and are referred to as the enteric nervous system.  Over 95% of serotonin is actually located in the gut.  So your belly can actually dictate your moods.  Your gut contains the same hormones and neurotransmitters as your brain.  Eat something and the gut begins to process the food, figuring out where to put everything and what is necessary.  Your gut will tell you what it needs and it doesn't.  So it you get a belly ache after eating your favorite chocolate cake, or that extra slice of pizza, you might want to listen.  During mealtime, try to eat slowly, being aware of how your stomach feels ( I KNOW how hard that is) but what you feel in your gut is highly indicative of what is going on in your body.  Give it a shot, eat right and eliminate the junk.  See if your mood will lighten, your stress level will go down, you might even lose a couple more pounds!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Going for it in the New Year





Happy New Year!  Many thanks to my loyal readers who have been so supportive over the past year, sharing their own stories and offering support.  I truly appreciate it!

I can't believe it is 2010.. Have you been reflecting on your goals for the year? I know I have.  I believe it's a year of facing your fears head on, challenging yourself every day and literally moving forward.

Before I created my goals for the year, I needed to look back on past successes or failures.  Yes, I am now going to give you my REAL numbers because I think it's important in order to relate.

When I began Weight Watchers on September 29, 2008, I walked in weighing 196.8 lbs. With that weight came post-partum depression, chronic fatigue and Fibromyalgia.  I was determined to feel better so I could keep up with my three little kids and I also yearned to look better and feel beautiful.  By the end of 2008 I had lost 15 lbs. and weighed 181.8.  On December 31, 2009 I weighed in at 173.8 for a total weight loss of 23 lbs.  Although I only lost 7.8 lbs. during 2009 I gained so much more -- knowledge and power.  Through my research with medical doctors, a top nutritionist and a renowned acupuncturist, I gained valuable insight into how my body works and how it processes food.  I learned the RIGHT foods to eat and what combination of foods work best for me.  The psychology of weight loss is now clear to me and  I have reprogrammed my brain to look for other things for pleasure or comfort -- including lowering my stress levels and learning to relax (this is an ongoing process).  My body is now strong enough to handle various types of exercise, I enjoy it and even look forward to working out.  I lost several inches, fit into a size 10 dress (I used to be a 14-16).  I created a community of friends through this blog who have similar goals or issues and I found workout buddies who relate to my weight loss struggles.  I believe I have set myself up for success in 2010.

Please tell my your fitness goals for this year.  I'd love to work together!

Here are my fitness goals for 2010:


Lose 33.8 lbs. (3 lbs. a month) - I want to weigh 140 lbs.
Workout 4-5 days a week
Continue going to Weight Watchers and Acupuncturist once a week
Meet with nutritionist every other week
Weigh myself no more than 2 times a week (at Weight Watchers and the acupuncturist's office)
Try Zumba
Challenge myself each week with a new workout routine, class or level on the treadmill.
Go hiking
Go ice skating
Play tennis
Run an 11 minute mile - for 3 miles
Run at least 5 different 5K's
Buy a new pair of jeans - size 12
Less alcohol
Give myself a break occasionally and don't feel bad about it
Literally play with my kids - soccer, basketball, bike riding
Investigate Cross Fit
Visit a rock climbing gym
Run on the beach
Cook more vegetarian meals
Get more sleep
Laugh more often
Spend time exercising with friends
Write 1 valuable blog post each day and learn to relate to my readers better
Include a monthly playlist
Hear from more of my readers

Good luck to all of you this New Year!

I would LOVE to hear what your fitness/health goals are for you this year.  Please post them here.  Together, we can all go for it!  And please pass it on...the more the merrier!