Help outfit Michael, Sarah, and John

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Back to the beginning

Most of my trials I wouldn't mind having - except for the weight issues. I cannot describe to you how insurmountable the task is that I have before me. I need to lose 150 pounds. 150! Not 5 or 10 or 20, but 150 pounds. I don't know anyone who is trying to lose that much weight and with so many other struggles that I'm having right now - it's more overwhelming than ever. If you're not up for reading some emotional venting of mine - then this might be a good blog post to skip.

You've been warned.

Where was I? Oh yes, 150 pounds to lose. How could I forget. It was in 5th grade when I realized that I weighed more than the other kids. The school nurse had all the kids in my class come out into the hall and be weighed. Looking back, that was a pretty embarrassing way to do that. Anyhow, I weighed about 20 pounds more than the other kids. That was my first mental acknowledgement of being overweight. As the years went on, so did the pounds. By high school I weighed about 240 pounds. In college I had one great semester where I took a nutritional science course and took up raquetball. I lost 40 pounds that semester and it was so awesome! But that success couldn't last - because I simultaneously developed sleep apnea and gallbladder issues. So, I had to drop school, because all I could do was sleep and have pain. Then my stepdad died. Then some other crummy stuff happened to me. By the time that Tyler & I were engaged - I weighed 300 pounds. 3 months into marriage, I became pregnant at 309 pounds. When I gave birth I weighed 355 pounds. Yeah. I managed to lose some of that weight (thankfully) and I'm now at 330 pounds where I seem to be maintaining. I get up all my willpower, begin the SBD (south beach diet) and lose up to 15 pounds, then something happens, I get sick or I injure myself and somehow I get off the diet and then I'm back to 330 pounds. It's so frustrating, I can't even tell you! I feel like such a failure because I haven't been able to beat this weight trial for my entire life! My doctors on-base are now suggesting weight loss surgery which that doesn't feel right. I don't know what else to do. I have strong faith in God that I can overcome this trial, I just don't know how, exactly. And with each failure, I feel like it's further and further away. I dream that one day I will finally enjoy a healthy body like so many others have. It's just so hard.


Ticklemedana said...

ok...I need your address...I am sending you a book to read. it's the one I've been telling you about "Intuitive Eating"...if you've read it, stop me but you need to read it...I love you. I too am feeling rather putoff by my weight and the fact that I've let it, I feel like it's the reason I'm still single; why no one seems attracted to me even though I know that's not the case, you know? I know I have less to lose, but it's daunting nonetheless, you know? We'll get through this, my friend...I know we will...

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry that you're struggling right now. I can only imagine how hard it must be. Sean's overall goal is to lose 100 pounds, so I know how overwhelming it can seem. And I know how frustrated I get over gaining 3 or 4 pounds...

Hang in there. You are a strong person--you'll find a way.

Melisa said...

I really do know how you feel. It gets so discouraging to fail time after time of trying. I just want to stop trying. It seems pointless if I can't stay with it anyway. I thought that surgery would be a good option, but then if I messed that up, I'd be out of options. I wish I knew something more to say than been there, done that because I am there and doing that! :) I really don't want to quit this time either, but it gets so overwhelming I don't trust myself not to quit. sigh

Carrie said...

Hey Jill...I am so sorry you are feeling so overwhelmed and down. I totally relate to you eventhough I have only 25-30lbs. to lose. I lost most of Bruce's weight and then ate myself the weight back on. I have been carrying it or 6 years now and feel like you do. It seems I will lose 5 or so pounds and then gain it back. It is a never ending battle. I just want to give you a website to checkout. It is I have been tracking my exercise, nutrition and water intake. It has really helped me be conscious of what I am eating. I like that you put in all the details of weight, height, activity level and Sparkpeople will calculate what you should be eating in calories. They even have meal plans laid out for you if you want to use them. I usually look at the meal plans to get ideas, but type in my own food for the day. I really like to go to the message boards and also read what others are going through and look at their tickers to see how far they have come in their journey. It is really motivating for me. I have been stuck in my weight...I don't know if it is because I am still breastfeeding, but I can tell I am losing inches and toning and definitely getting stronger. Good luck and I know that you will be able to get to your goal. I have bad days, but I know that I can't give up! Good Luck!!

Anonymous said...


Why do you have to lose 150 pounds? Why that number? Is it something you just have in your head? Is it that being 180 is supposed to be "ideal"? Be an individual. I weigh about 185, and as you know, I'm quite a bit shorter than you. You are tall. You are bigger-boned than I am. My personal feeling is that 180 for you is on the too small side. And why do you insist or believe that you must make 150 pounds lost the goal?

Why not start with 10-15? This way, you're much closer to your goal. You can then rest on your achievement, and celebrate in a healthy way. Then set your new goal for 10-15 more pounds lost. Rest and celebrate again. And by that time, you will have lost 30 pounds. Oh my stars! Look how far you will have come. Slow and steady, I think that might be what you need. Once you really get on a roll, you'll much more motivated to continue.

Maybe you need to think in 5 pound incremental goals. Losing the amount of weight you need to may take over a year. For the type of goal you're setting, that is WAY long term. Use smaller goals, or steps, as a way to reach a few more short term goals. Ultimately you'll feel much better about yourself, because you'll have reached all these little goals on the way. And what a way to feel great about yourself on your way to the long term goal.

My personal observation of you is that you have grandiose, awesome ideas and ideals. But they get to be so big that they become unmanageable. You need a way to make them manageable so that they really do seem do-able.

The first thing I would do if I were you is to take the weight counter off of the top of your blog. Make it, if you want to keep a version of it, like one or two hearts long, for the smaller goals. If you want to keep an overall total, by all means, do it. But make it simpler, and keep it over on one side or the other. That will be the long term tracking meter. But make the prominent one at the top smaller. You will trick yourself into believing it's much more attainable. You'll have, overall, a better attitude. It will be possible.

And regarding the SBD: why this? I think the online food diary is a good way of proceeding. Get away from the regiment that you want to rebel against. Make little changes to your life that you can live with, one at a time. And I hate the way our modern society have changed the word "diet." A diet is what we eat, the way we live. It includes everything. The definition has shifted to mean how we eat while restricting ourselves. We now only think of dieting as what we give up. Diet is an everyday lifestyle choice. That's why a "diet" will never work unless we make it a permanent change.

But we have to be able to stick with the change. Start by reducing the amount of sugar you eat. White sugar especially, along with HFCS. Read labels. Try to move away from cereal that's come from a box (anything processed, really). Pasta, potatoes, and most other starches break down into sugars in the body. They store as fat if you don't burn everything up that you eat in a day. Cut out anything that come pre-packaged and shelf-stable. No more macaroni and cheese (kraft or otherwise), no more potato chips, no more soda. Don't even get me started on diet sodas. They contain aspartame (think Equal, Splenda, and the like). They're awful. They turn into formaldehyde in the body. Formaldehyde is used to preserve bodies, like cadavers (human) and other animals (frogs, etc). It is also poisonous. It's a chemical preservative, which is mostly used for biological purposes, which is to preserve something in its death state, not in its alive state. Stay away from anything that says aspartame or is artificially sweetened.

Achieving health is not easy in our society. We demand too many modern conveniences. Avoid the microwave if you can. It's bad news. We want box mixes that are all ready to go. Your health is worth it, but being healthy is not convenient. It takes work; it takes discipline. It takes a lifetime commitment. It's never over. But it makes the quality of life enjoyable. You already cook alot at home. Fantastic! I personally feel that food is better for me the more ingredients are separated and I get to put them together. In my mind, that seems more natural. If it comes out of a box or from the freezer and I bought it like that from the store, I try to only have it on hand for real emergencies or when there is no possible way I'll have time to cook.

Avoid fast food whenever possible. I know you like Chile's. While there may still be problems with that, on some level or another, that is infinitely better to me than McDonald's. Good food and good cooking takes time. I'd rather go somewhere where I have to sit for 30 minutes to get my food than a fast food joint. I feel that it keeps my food that much closer to the way nature intended.

Please don't feel like I'm badgering you on this. These problems exist in our country on such a grand scale that almost everybody has some issue or another to work on. I'm working on these as much as anybody else has to. I mean to inspire you, to give you some thoughts and suggestions that might work for you. They've worked for me. When I moved to Reno, I was over 200 pounds. I've lost a fair amount, I think between 15 and 20 pounds. It's been gradual. I've been trying to change a little at a time, so that I could make changes I could stick with. I now find that I don't crave sweets very often, but when I do it's big. I discovered that if I want something sweet and sugary, I'll deny myself for a while. But ultimately I know that if I give in and have a little, I won't gorge later. This still takes willpower. If I want a cookie, but push it off over and over, when I give in, I will eat a whole package, instead of just one or two. I feel that breaking a rule a little helps me to avoid breaking the rule big time, then feeling like total crap, thus being more able to control the consequences. I find that a little goes a long way even when it's about food.

Wow, I've said a lot. Remember when I told you about EFT after your tried to tell me about it? I'm going to give you a related website, which is where I found EFT from. It's Google it if it doesn't create a link. There's lots of interesting articles about all sorts of stuff health-related. Join the newsletter if you like. I've found some really good ideas there.

Hope this helps! I wanted to offer some support, but I also wanted to give you a way to empower yourself. Consider what I've said. It also applied to my depression. Then go walk the dog. 20-30 minutes of dog-walking once or twice a day is still exercise, where you can go slow if you want to, but can do wonders for mood and health. Don't be frustrated or down for too long. Find a way to recommit and keep moving. Hopefully I've offered something that can help you.

Hope everything else goes great! Love ya.


Kathey said...

Hi Jill,

I was going to recommend EFT again too, so I'm glad KC did. Dr. Mercola has lots of good things.
Gary Craig's website has excellent articles on weight loss too.

Perhaps you and I could do some more over the phone. I'm no expert but I've sure found that it helps to have someone else offering suggestions. I'd be glad to, if you would like to.

Love, Kathey

Anonymous said...

I do know how you feel. It has to be one of the most frustrating 'trials' that I have to deal with. I've lost about 15 and still have about 60 to go. Just take it one day at a time. If you find small habits you need to make or break, focus on those instead of the number on the scale. One thing that helps somewhat is realizing how I feel after eating different things (I don't do this as often as I should). I've never been a fan of 'diets' because even if you get down to your 'ideal' weight, you'll go off the diet and then not know how to maintain. Find a way to ADD healthy things to your eating and exercise rather than depriving yourself. Then slowly take out or minimize the 'bad habits'. Find alternatives. One person I know started eating apples sliced with a little bit of salt when they were craving chips. Small and simple changes. Maybe keep a journal for 3 or 4 days of what you eat, how you feel, exercise you get and how you feel afterwards. Then go back and review and find your weak points, then pick ONE and work on it. Slow and steady wins the race. I have a sister-in-law that has quite a bit to lose also and she is also struggling, but she is taking one small thing at a time. Do you have someone to report to everyday? That helps me also if I am accountable to someone. Make small weekly or monthly goals. Someone else mentioned work on losing 10 pounds. That would be an awesome idea also. Then once you lose that 10 pounds, reward yourself (not with food) and make your next goal. I think I might actually work that into my plan. Study the word of wisdom also with footnotes and everything.
Here are a few sayings I keep on my desk to help me with my goals. 'Never let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.' 'Fall down seven times, stand up 8'. 'Be not afraid of going slowly; be afraid only of standing still.'
Hope this helps. Let me know if you need anymore ideas or helps.

Dizzie Lizzie said...

Peter has about eight aunts and uncle's on his dad's side of the family that have had the gastric bypass surgery. The results were fantastic and fast but many of them can still only digest a teeny bit of food at a time even after a few years - mostly protein. One of them has managed to put all of the weight back on after having a pregnancy.

shannon said...

Remember our deal Jill? 20 lbs and then we get massages!!! You CAN do it. The thing I know about you is that you are stong and have a lot of faith. Faith and works go hand in hand. You've got to be consistent on the work to reach your goal. I really like KC's idea of making a smaller goal. If you want we can go to 10 lbs and do massages.

I have had as much as 60 lbs to lose after my pregnancies and the ONLY way I have been able to lose the weight and keep it off is by counting those stinkin' calories, staying hydrated, movin' and shakin' the body.

Wanna know a secret? I'm an emotional eater. (That's why I gain so much when I'm prego!) I hate to admit it, but realizing it has really changed how i look at food now. I have started to stop myself before eating something and then ask why I want to eat. Am I really hungry? Am I thirsty? Am I angry? Am I excited? It's amazing that when I've stopped to see what's really the case that I realize 70% of the time my tummy is not hungry. I've started to give myself what it really needs instead of just putting a bandaid over my emotions by eating it away. When I'm emotional and need to feel better I will find something other than eating that really makes me feel better. For example, when I'm mad I play something challenging on the piano or crank up some roudy music and fight to it. Or I write in my journal and tear up the paper afterwards---it makes me feel so much better! ;) Maybe this could work for you too. ;)