Thursday, December 18, 2008

Travel Plans

The holiday season is proving to be tougher on my weight-loss goals than I expected. : ( I'm revising my plans from losing weight to making it through without gaining any weight.

I'm leaving Saturday to visit family for 10 days and I know the food that is waiting. Maintaining is going to be a real challenge without a plan.

Here's my plan:

1. As much movement as possible. There is a ton of snow where I'm headed, so getting outside with my kids for sledding, snowman building, etc. is on the agenda. I have been thinking a lot about how little time I spend outside.

2. Mom has a new treadmill set up in front of her big screen TV. I'm going to break it in for her. : )

3. Lots of water and veggies.

4. Enjoy treats in small serving sizes.

I'm going to focus on people and having a great time. I'll get back to the weight loss goals and blogging about my effort in January when I get home. My goal is to lose 35 more pounds by March 31, 2009. It's going to come quickly!

I was so excited about the Biggest Loser Finale. Way to go Michelle!!!

Merry Christmas Everyone! I'll be back on here in January ready to lose weight and get to the top of my mountain! : )

Monday, December 8, 2008

Stress Eating

I haven't been doing so well in the weight loss department these past two weeks. I was so proud of making it through the Thanksgiving holiday with a weight loss but something changed immediately afterward.

Maybe it was getting to the end of the book club. Maybe it was the onset of the Christmas season. All I know is I've been feeling really stressed out, and I don't know why and it is affecting my eating. The sugar has crept back in. I haven't been praying about it. I need to stop myself now and re-evaluate and get things back on track before I undo the good I've done over the past 6 weeks.

My goal was to lose 5 pounds before I head to Mom and Dad's for Christmas. I'm going to try to refocus and work harder so I can accomplish that goal. This is a hard time of year for losing weight, isn't it?

Mom is visiting and just made a big batch of an all veggie soup from Weight Watchers that I love. That should help get me eating better again.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A Telling Photo and Plans for Tomorrow's Feast

Wow. I am absolutely amazed at how quickly 6 weeks went. When we started this book club on October 20th, 6 weeks felt like such a long time. It was a blink, and I still have so much to learn. I will definitely be re-reading the book.

I did really well with my weight-loss goals during the first 4 weeks, but Week 5 was a stumbling block for me. I just stopped making wise choices. I'm trying to get back on track before the holiday season gets going full swing.

Take a look at this photo. I laughed so hard when I walked down the stairs and saw this on my coffee table. There is just something very telling about it all. : )

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and I'm trying to make some plans ahead of time. Yesterday's reading, "Avoiding Pitfalls" was a good one to read before Thanksgiving. I've been thinking about this quote:

"Part of our journey toward eating sanely is learning to think through our weaknesses and temptations ahead of time, rather than being caught off guard by them. " (pg. 163)

On the Today Show this week they said that the typical American Thanksgiving dinner comes in at over 4,000 calories. OUCH!!!!

Here's my plans for tomorrow:

1. Exercise in the morning.

2. Drink water all day

3. Only eat what I really like. Sometimes on the holidays I eat everything because it is there. I plan to be more selective and decide what is actually worth the extra calories to me.

4. Plate around- This is a trick I learned from Weight Watchers awhile ago. When you fill your plate, there should be space on the plate between every item, nothing touching.

5. This is the first year I will not be hosting Thanksgiving myself, so it will be nice not to have a bunch of fattening food leftover. I plan to enjoy the meal and come home without any leftovers.

Here are some other quotes that were good for me from this week's reading:

"A short-term euphoria is not worth the long-term anguish which inevitably follows loss of control." (pg. 165- From "Food For Thought")

This one was especially meaningful to me because I have felt like a failure lately:

If you are feeling weak as you consider the temptations at hand, praise God! Remember God loves to be strong in weak people! (pg. 164)

Well He must be having fun with me lately! : )

I actually gained 1/2 a pound when I weighed in on Monday. I was relieved because I expected it to be worse. I'm praying that I'll start going down the scale instead of up it beginning next Monday. I really want this to be the first holiday I lose weight instead of gain it. I don't want to be another one of the statistics.

Happy Thanksgiving! : )

Monday, November 24, 2008

How Goes the Journey?

I've been trying to get to the computer all day and haven't had a chance. I just wanted to check in with you all. How goes the journey? Did you have a good weekend? Can you believe we are starting Week 6 already? Where did 6 weeks go?

Be Back Soon. : )

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Tough Week and Biggest Loser

I'm having a really hard time staying on track this week. It's funny how my life circumstances keep lining up with whatever the current reading topic in the book is. This week while we are reading about choosing, I'm making terrible eating choices.

On Sunday, I let myself have a piece of birthday cake at a party. A normal, sane person would have been satisfied with that one piece, not felt guilty, and moved on. Not me. I felt guilty and less than "perfect" and allowed it to trigger more sugar eating. I've also been battling a cold and wanted comfort, so to food I've been a-going.

I think when I started this book, I hoped it would be six weeks of losing a whole bunch of weight and being fixed. Instead, I'm finding ah-ha moments where I'm doing things right and figuring stuff out, but there are also moments of making mistakes that I have to learn from also.

I'm hoping to take the opportunity to analyze my bad choices this week, see what's causing them, and work at stopping before I sabotage myself.

Here's some things I'm thinking:

- a choice to have some sugar does not allow me to then go on a sugar binge. It should be a once in a while treat and end there. I need to enjoy it, not feel guilty, and then move on. I want to remember how much better I feel without sugar. I love the feeling of being free from it. It surprises me how much havoc sugar can reek on my life. It really is addictive and makes you feel gross. You don't notice it until you get rid of it for awhile.

- perfectionism is definitely my enemy. I need to pray about this some more. Whenever I stop being perfect, I tend to quit altogether. Help me conquer this Lord and just live a healthy life.

On to other topics....

Any Biggest Loser fans out there?

I want to see Vicky go home so badly. Do you think it possible or does she still have too much power?

Wasn't it interesting and depressing to learn about how much our society has changed since 1980? Here were a few facts that stuck out to me:

- Obesity rates have nearly doubled
- Percentage of adults with diabetes has increased 300%
- The average size dress a women bought in 1985 was a size 8, today that average is a size 14.
- Women today eat an average of 385 extra calories a day as compared to the 1980's.

I found this all so disturbing. I know I'm right there with my culture. What has happened to us? What do you think is to blame for these dramatic changes?

Any predictions on who wins Biggest Loser?

My vote? Go Michelle!

Monday, November 17, 2008

God is Doing a Good Work

I had a rough week last week being sick yet again. This time it was a horrible sore throat and the only thing on my mind was crawling back into bed every chance I had.

I didn't fit in many blog posts, but I did do the reading. This book is so full of great wisdom. Some of the thoughts about patience have been sticking with me. Especially the idea of "Keeping Short Accounts" and the promise that because I have surrendered this to God, "the process is working. He is at work. If you are staying in his presence in prayer, then you are changing, whether you can see the changes right now or not." (pg. 116).

I really needed to be reminded that even in a week of being bedridden, God was doing work in me. The idea of progress vs. perfection is an important thing for me to get. I am one of those people who wants to get normal as fast as possible. I want to be "totally 'fixed,' 'healed,' 'skinny,' and 'perfect' right now." (pg. 117) My impatience and perfectionism will keep working against me.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes:

"I am learning to look at hunger as a good, positive feeling- a sensation tinged with the excitement and anticipation of all that God, our provider, has in store. He wants us to be hungry for his best. He wants us to live in patient, faithful anticipation, trusting him to fill our hungry lives with good things." (pg. 120)

"Perseverance is a key ingredient in success of every kind, and our challenge is no exception." (pg. 122)

I'm looking forward to this next week reading about making choices. I know what the right choice is usually. I need help knowing how to master my appetite so I actually make the right choices.

Here's How I'm Doing:
Weight lost this week: -1.o lbs.
Weight lost since beginning of book club: -5.0 lbs.
My goal is to lose 50 lbs by March 31, 2009
I've lost this much so far: -16 lbs.
34 to go! : )

How goes the battle?

Friday, November 14, 2008

I'm Still Here

Hey fellow book club readers! I'm still here. : )
Thank you for being patient with me with keeping up on blog posts. I'm glad that patience is the theme of this week. I've been sick again for the last three days, but feel like I'm on the mend. I'll be back with a post soon!

I hope you are all doing well. I'm excited to hear how it is going.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Patience- I Need Some

I am loving these readings on patience. I didn't get to this place quickly so it will take time and I need to be patient.

A lot of the extra weight I'm carrying right now came from times of sadness- the loss of my babies, adoptions falling through, etc. I'm impatient to see it gone because it represents a time of grief and I don't want to be reminded of that sadness any more. God has done so much healing in me. This weight loss journey is just more of the process and it, too, will take time and my patience, especially if I want lasting change instead of a quick fix that will need to be redone.

I thought today I'd just make a list of some of my favorite quotes, phrases, and words from the reading I've done lately:

Patience is an undervalued virtue in the present day.
Concentrating on lasting changes rather than quick fixes
Patience is a virtue born out of faith. And faith is a gift.
We are on a journey that must be traveled one day at a time. (Sometimes even one hour or one minute at a time!
The Lord gives us this day our daily bread. Accept it gratefully. Put aside tomorrow and the next day and the next. Stop hurrying. Relax into the moment.
Lean on God in the now
We need to sit still before the Lord and ask him to slow us down and teach us to listen to our bodies.
Goal: Serene and normal life.

Here's how I'm doing after Monday's weigh-in:
Weight lost this week: -1.o lbs.
Weight lost since beginning of book club: -4.0 lbs.
My goal is to lose 50 lbs by March 31, 2009
I've lost this much so far: -15 lbs.35 to go! : )

One of the activities we are supposed to do this week is to set small goals. I need to spend some time coming up with more, but here are a few:

1. I will continue losing between 1 and 1.5 lbs. a week.
2. I'll be back to my pre-pregnancy weight (this most recent one) within the next three weeks.
3. I will make it through Thanksgiving and Christmas without gaining any weight this year. (Need to start planning for that)
4. I will meet my weight loss goal by March 31st
5. I will run in a 5K race I have planned in May.

Your Turn:
Prayer Requests?
Progress Reports?

Hope all is going well for each of you....(even you lurkers out there who don't comment) : )

Friday, November 7, 2008

Don't Give Up! Keeping Short Accounts

Well, I have been a lazy blogger on here lately, huh? I have a lot of excuses. If you read the comments section on the last post, you already heard some of them:

-Turned into a Facebook addict (If you don't know what this is, don't try to find out. You'll regret it because you'll get addicted and hours will disappear) : )
-Got distracted by the elections
-Kids have been out of school all week
-Wanted to let you talk to each other in the comments more

The real reason is I have been having a less than stellar week following my eating plan and doing my reading. I have battled with wanting to quit and feeling like I'm failing again. Today's devotion, "Keeping Short Accounts" was a perfect one for me today. I'm amazed at the timing! I don't know how the writers timed this devotion to come on the day I felt like I was blowing it, but they did. It was a God thing.

How often have I traveled down the road of, "Well, I've already blown it, so I might as well just ___________." And the line of "it occurs to you that this is already Thursday, so you might as well wait until Monday and really blow out the whole weekend." I was mentally preparing to forget this all until Monday when I read that line.

I promised myself that this journey would be about lasting change and breaking free from the insanity of doing the same old thing over and over again. I don't want the same results, so I have to change my approach. And this is my M.O. I'm excited to have an ah-ha, breakthrough here. My all or nothing behavior has to stop or I will constantly be dieting and regaining and dieting and regaining. It feels good to have identified one of the ways I self-sabotage myself in this effort. When I mess up, stop, pray, get back on track. Don't give up. Keep short accounts. Ditch perfectionism.

I think people who are not perfectionists would believe that a perfectionist has it all together all the time. They would think it was someone who is perfect. But a true perfectionist knows that perfectionists are those who give up when they can't be perfect. That's me.

If you haven't read today's devotion (Keeping Short Accounts), please read it before the weekend starts. I think we've all been struggling with weekends and I think this will help us. Pray, repent, start over.

I also need to be praying more. It is interesting how the theme this week is prayer, and I have struggled to pray at all. There has been a block in me for some reason, and I've found it so difficult to pray. I'd rather be doing anything else but praying even though I know that is my lifeline. Why do I resist something I need so much? Something I love so much?

Day Two hit it right on the head. So much of our lives as Christians involve spiritual battle. Whether we want to admit it or face it, it is reality. And prayer is critical. It really is easy for me to think about my weight loss journey as a battle. I just need to do a better job of using the weapon of prayer in this battle. It is kind of like exercise- I resist it, but once I do it I love it and wonder why I didn't want to do it.

Personally, I took the election results hard and have been feeling unsettled and anxious. Insecurity about what the future holds has my stomach in knots. It might sound weird to others reading this, but it really has affected me, and I've turned to my typical anti-anxiety medication: FOOD.

Instead of quiting or waiting for Monday to "restart," I'm going to finish up this journal entry and go pray. Then I'm going to just keep on living this new lifestyle instead of thinking, "Man I blew my diet, might as well quit."

Some Notes About the Book Club:

1. Don't worry if you get behind. Put a pencil mark on the devotion you miss and just keep going. You can go back later and catch the ones you miss. There is so much in this book, I know I'm going to need to reread it several times to get out of it all there is for me to learn. Don't be a perfectionist. : )

2. There are seven readings in each section. So Monday= Day One, Tuesday = Day Two, etc. with Sunday being the final day.

3. I try to blog often, but even if I don't put up a post, check the comments section for new posts from other people reading the book. When you leave a comment you can check the box that will have all additional comments on that post emailed to you if it is easier for you to keep up with the conversation that way instead of having to come back and check.

Here are some prayer requests:

- Pray for Sally while she is on vacation. She was able to go on an unexpected vacation with her husband and was worried about being able to stay on track. Pray she'll have a great time and will be free from worrying about overeating and will come home refreshed and ready to continue with all of this, not discouraged in any way.

- Pray for Sally A. (My mom) who is on a business trip with my dad and will be living in a hotel for two weeks. She wants to stay active and to eat well without having to live on salad alone.

-Pray that Renee's family will all be healthy again and that she will be able to stay encouraged, too.

Did I miss anything? How are things going? Anyone else needing to keep short accounts? : )

Monday, November 3, 2008

A New Week Begins

I'm celebrating this morning. I lost 1.5 lbs and it is a miracle. I had such a rough week with being sick and injured, I didn't expect much. This loss this morning was really a gift.

The reading in Faithfully Fit has been so good for me lately. There is so much in it that is applicable, I think I'll probably have to go through it more than once in order to get everything I need from it.

Some of the thoughts that stood out to me from the Point of View chapters were:

1. Expecting God to do a miracle in this, believing He will heal me from the overeating and emotional baggage, and trusting Him to get me to the place I need to be to stay healthy and fit, instead of believing it is impossible. I read this post on Lysa TerKeurst's blog this morning and it really spoke to me in this area. It is easy to believe that all of this is impossible. I loved how she said that we "were not made for impossibility."

2. Quit allowing food and dieting to be an obsession. Love this quote because it describes me:

But seriously folks, I would not even dare to calculate the number of leisure hours I have logged thinking about food- what I know I should eat today, what I shouldn't eat but am really hungry for, what I have eaten and wish I hadn't, what I resisted eating but wish I'd given in to. Ad nauseum. (pg. 70)

I want to "set my mind on things above, not on earthly things" (Colossians 3:1). I'm tired of thinking about food and dieting all of the time. I want freedom here.

This morning, I read Prayer, Day One. (I read one devotion a day, and start a new week every Monday. This is Week Three)

It was so good for me to be reminded of my need for prayer. I loved the way they said this:

The 'transforming friendship' that grows during our prayer times will be the key to our becoming all he would have us be. (pg. 79)

"Transforming Friendship" is an awesome way of describing what happens when my life is characterized by prayer. I started thinking about how transforming it would be if I was really, truly seeking Him before every food choice. Or if I would really "Ask him to show me what to change in my daily circumstances in order to bring about his will for me." (pg.82)

This chapter was my favorite so far. There is just so much practical wisdom in it and it really inspired me to be praying more about all of this. I've been praying, but not in a way that makes me truly reliant on Him to win this victory for me.

How are things going for all of you? We all seemed to struggle with the weekend last week. Was this one better, the same? Any personal insights you found in the reading? Praying for all of us! : )

(Remember you can join in on the discussion at any point, even if you aren't reading the book with us.)

Here's How I'm Doing:

Weight lost this week: -1.5 lbs.
Weight lost since beginning of book club: -3.0 lbs.
My goal is to lose 50 lbs by March 31, 2009
I've lost this much so far: -14 lbs.
36 to go! : )

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Catching Back Up

This has been a tough week. The mastitis symptoms made me so sick. It was one of those times when I could have climbed in bed and stayed asleep until I was all better, but my mommy duties wouldn't let that happen.

Then yesterday, I was holding my baby and tried to stand up off the couch after feeding him. I hurt something in my back in the process and now I'm an invalid. : ) No more running for awhile. It hurts just to stand long enough to take a shower.

It has been depressing dealing with all of this and difficult to stay focused on my fitness and spiritual goals, let alone all the other stuff I'm supposed to be doing as a wife, mom, and homemaker. I need God's help to not turn to food to make me feel better. I think I'm on the mend now, so hopefully I'll make up for lost time.

I read Point of View: Day 4 "Expect A Miracle" today. I enjoyed it a lot. I am very much opposed to the "name it and claim it" or "prosperity doctrine" message, but I don't think that is what this is talking about at all. I really do think that deep down I lack faith that I can really win at this for long term. When I honestly examine my feelings, there is a lot of pessimism about my ability to lose weight and maintain that success.

I liked this quote:

I know it will take a miracle to keep me faithful to healthy eating and disciplined exercise- and that's exactly what I'm expecting! (pg. 65)

I want to keep thinking through today's journal questions about my heart's desire in the area of eating, nutrition, and fitness:

1. How will it feel when God has had his way in my life?
2. How will I be different?

Anyone answer those questions and gain some insight?

I was also curious what your plans are for handling all of the candy tomorrow and the days after? Do you have a plan? I think I'm going to tell myself that I need to say no to all candy this time and to remember that this is just a season of my life. There will be a time when I can have some again. Then I think well maybe I'll let myself have just one or two as a treat so I don't feel totally deprived and to practice moderation. What do you think- cold turkey, no candy this year, or set a limit and practice moderation?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Oh Boy! I'm Sick

I'm nursing my baby and have developed mastitis. I was distracted by the thrush, so I didn't recognize the mastitis symptoms and didn't catch it in time. I've got the flu like symptoms- fever, chills, body ache, etc.

I'm not going to be able to blog for a couple of days, but I wanted to make sure you all had a chance to talk with each other about what you read today and tomorrow.

Comments are open to check in with each other and to share how you are doing, what you liked about the reading, etc.

I've got antibiotics now so I should be back on my feet soon. : )

Monday, October 27, 2008

Starting a New Week: Point of View Day One

Boy, weekends are tough on a diet, huh? : )

It was interesting for me to see myself slip into old behaviors over the weekend. I stopped writing down what I ate, I went out to eat and had to deal with wanting to eat more than I really needed, and I started to feel the discouragement that comes from perfectionism. I'm back on track today, but I want to think a lot about what went wrong this weekend and plan to be more successful next weekend. I want to be ready for it ahead of time.

Random Observations From Last Week:
  • I need to keep my fridge and pantry stocked with good choices. Part of went wrong this weekend was lack of groceries and I ate what was available.
  • I eat in front of the computer too much and don't taste what I'm eating
  • I sit too much during the day. I want to incorporate more movement into my day, not just formal exercise.
  • The exercise I did get in Friday through Sunday felt wonderful! But I get this weird emotion about feeling overwhelmed by the fact that I have to KEEP exercising and watching what I'm eating even thought it feels so good to be doing these things. I need to focus on each day at a time instead of being overwhelmed by the long term.
  • Surrender on a daily basis, even meal by meal basis, is a must. I have to keep coming to the Lord to reteach me how to be healthy.
  • God wants to work in these areas of my heart: needing approval, anxiety, and perfectionism.

Here's What I Loved From Today's Reading:

The second week of meditations, therefore, concentrates on seeing ourselves and our struggle with food from God's point of view. (pg. 53) I'm looking forward to seeing what I learn as I look at this from His perspective.

We can view our daily struggle with overeating as a tedious, difficult, boring inconvenience that robs us of pleasure. Or we can make the conscious choice to view it as a physical and spiritual challenge through which God is giving us an opportunity to grow in our knowledge and trust of him. (pg. 56) What an "ah-ha" for me! How I choose to view this struggle is important. It's tough to have to deal with this, but God will use it for good if I let Him. The ongoing need to come to Him for help is a good thing, too. It makes me seek Him.

Here's How I'm Doing:

Weight lost this week: -1.5 lbs. (I think...I'm not sure exactly where I started last week, might be more like 1 lb)
Weight lost since beginning of book club: -1.5 lbs.
My goal is to lose 50 lbs. I've lost this much so far: 12.5 lbs.

How are things going for you? Any insights from this reading? Any challenges?

Praying for you!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

You Inspired Me!!! : )

Yippee!! I exercised! And I owe it all to your comments. I kept thinking about Sally getting up early to go to the gym, Marisa's kickboxing class, Mom spending so much time outside, Daiquiri running a 5K, and Renee getting her 20-30 minutes of exercise in every day. You all inspired me. So, I'm sorry I didn't blog yesterday, but it really is your fault you know. I was too busy exercising to sit in front of the computer. : )

As I was reading through all of your comments yesterday about needing to get outside more, I suddenly realized, "Why am I sitting here? My husband is home, I could go outside RIGHT NOW." So, I hurried and got some sweats on and went for a nice long walk.

There's nothing like a walk by yourself outside to give you time to be introspective and to pray. God showed me quite a bit during that walk. I just love how this time I might be losing weight, but I'm also learning so much about myself and what has caused this weight problem in the first place.

Then last night instead of the usual movie at home, our family used a free pass we were given to the local ice rink. More exercise! It was so much fun! (I'm not sure if my husband would agree). : )

Then this morning, I got a call from Daiquiri and she said, "You have no excuse. Your husband is taking care of the baby and you are going for a run/walk with me." We had so much fun. I feel more alive than I've felt in a year. Thanks for the inspiration, ladies!

All of the exercise did bring up a challenge though. Appetite.

After all of the extra activity, I wanted to eat more. I think my body always wants to make up the deficit. "She's burning calories. I need to get it back." I really struggled with it last night and ended up eating more than I should have eaten. My first reaction was very typical of me. I started to get mad at myself and doubt my ability to do this and to get really discouraged. That made me eat more. Finally, I stopped myself and said, "I have to do this different this time."

I thought about the devotion yesterday about the resources available to me through prayer. All of the resources of heaven and the power that raised Christ from the dead is available to me to stop overeating. I started praying because I knew the typical me would have woken up this morning and been tempted to give up, all because of just one little slip up. I'm such a perfectionist!

Like I said in an earlier post, I'm having to start over and have Him reteach me how to eat and think about my body. So I asked him, "How do I keep from being starving after exercise." Here's some of what I'm trying:

- Not to forget to fill up with water because my body might be acting hungry when it is really thirsty
- Eat some protein and carbs immediately after exercising
- Fill up on veggies. The carrots from our garden are still awesome and are my lifeline right now.

Here's some favorite things from the reading for Day Five and Day Six:


I pray that you will begin to understand how incredibly great his power is to help those who believe him. It is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead" (Ephesians 1:18-20 LB).

Why then do I live like I am spiritually bankrupt? Why do I continue to struggle with my compulsive eating when every weapon in God's spiritual arsenal is waiting to come to my defense? Why do I flounder and fret and accept defeat when every ounce of God's power is charged and ready to kick into action at my command? (pg. 41)


Why is there such therapeutic value in giving God our worries? because tension, stress, and anxiety feed our compulsions. If we happen to be overeaters, they trigger our overeating. But compulsive behavior decreases in direct proportion to the growth of our faith. The worries we trust God to handle cannot act as fuel to our compulsions. An attitude of relaxed faith encourages sane eating habits. (pg. 44)

That is so me! Anxiety is a big issue for me. I'm praying over that one! : ) And I've got a God box made that I'm going to be using just like Frank. : )

Hope you are all having a great weekend. What insights, favorite quotes are you thinking over this weekend?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Inside Out- Book Club Day 4

I feel really good today. I feel lighter, and I really like the good food I'm feeding myself.

It also feels really good to not be so focused this time on the facade. Maybe it's because I'm getting older. I really do want to be fit and thin, but my focus is different. In the past, I've tried to visualize myself thin, or picture a certain outfit I wanted to wear again. Or I thought about how I wanted to look for a certain event. This was all in an attempt to keep up my inner resolve and motivation, and the focus was always, always on looking good for other people.

Now I just want to feel good and free. I want to fix the baggage inside just as much as I want to wear a size 8 pair of jeans again. I want energy just as much as I want to go to the mall and have fun shopping again. I want God's healing more than anything because I know He is in the business of permanent healing not just band-aid fixes. My outside is temporal. My inside is eternal. I'm just learning to value the eternal higher than the stuff that won't last.

Today's reading was great. I like this mental picture:

"Picture a cowboy who has thrown down his pistol and put his hands in the air. The gig is up. Ironically, we who are willing to take this stance and give up to God are the ones who win in the end." (pg. 40)

As I'm working through this surrender stuff, I'm trying to be like that, hands up in the air saying, "I surrender. Show me how to live, think, eat, act, etc." I've got a 3 x 5 card and a pencil ready, and I'm writing down anything I feel like God is talking to me about changing. Today, He has been talking to me about how much I need approval from other people. I'm also trying to remember to talk to Him about it before anything goes in my mouth. I know that might sound weird, but I need to completely start over and have him teach me how to eat again. I'm trying to remember to do that. Sometimes I'm doing, it sometimes not.

My goal is to fit in exercise and get out of the house more. I've been good about being more active today, but no formal exercise session.

Keep the conversation going. I loved reading through the comments on the last post. Any new insights today?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Surrender- Day Three

There were some thought provoking parts for me in today's reading.

As I'm surrendering control over my eating, I've been asking God how that needs to look for me. And one area He has asked me to surrender to him is the scale. I'm a compulsive weigher, often weighing myself several times a day. It's just a habit. If I walk by the bathroom scale, I hop on and see how I'm doing. This isn't healthy for me. Regardless of the number on the scale, I usually end up eating more because of it. If I've lost weight, I let up on the good I'm doing thinking, "Woo Hoo! I'm losing weight. I can eat more." Or if the number is going in the wrong direction I get depressed about it and give up on my diet. So this time I've set a limit for myself. I can only weigh in on Monday morning. Once. That's it. This has been really hard and I think it is a control issue.

I keep thinking, "How am I going to know if I'm doing any good if I don't check the scale? How will I know if this is working? Or if I should be eating less." I just have to trust that God is working in me and to let go of trying to control it. I can feel positive change already and that needs to be enough. But it is hard to trust Him because I'm desperate to get the weight off. When I saw today's affirmation, "I will trust that God is in control" (pg. 37) it reminded me to trust Him with whatever is going to happen this week. I've been asking Him to direct my eating. Now I have to let go.

The last paragraph on pg. 37 stood out to me, too. Here's a quote from it:

Compulsive overeating is often a form of rebellion. We like to think that the rules do not apply to us, that we can operate outside the facts and realities of calories, metabolism, and weight gain....What part does rebellion play in your eating problem?

I don't like the fact that I can't eat as much as my friends. My body requires fewer calories. Period. And I've always thought it was unfair and I've rebelled against it in the past. I realize now that I need to make peace with what my body does require. I didn't design me so I don't get to set the calorie limit. : )


How's it going for you?
I realize that with a new post everyday I don't give you a lot of time to comment. Feel free to talk about any of the past posts/devotions here, too.
I'm mostly interested in the conversation and want us to be encouraging each other. Anyone facing any challenges? Anything we can pray about?
Do you have a favorite thought or quote from today's reading? Any ah-ha moments?

Yesterday was a tough day for me. Anyone have a day that was harder than the others? My trigger was emotion. I did eat more yesterday than the other two days, but I feel good about how I dealt with the emotion and tried hard not to use food to comfort myself. It was a big step for me.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Surrender- Day Two

Today's devotion was titled "The Problem Is Me." At first I thought, "Hmmm, I'm not sure I got as much out of today's devotion as I did yesterday's." But as I've gone through my day, I have been thinking about it a lot.

When I read it, I thought, "I already know I'm the problem. That's why I'm reading this book." But what I've been asking myself is, "How have I been the problem specifically?"

Here's some of what I came up with:

- I ask God for help but then I don't do what He says to do
- I have many excuses for why I'm overweight right now- pregnancies, miscarriages, stress from adoption process, slow metabolism, etc. etc. but the reason I'm overweight comes down to the fact that I ate more than I should. I did it to me regardless of circumstances.
- I respond to emotion by eating. Food is my drug of choice
- I have never learned how to maintain a healthy weight. I'm always losing or gaining. I have a real "all or nothing" personality.
- I'm hard on myself and unforgiving of mess ups

I'll probably be coming up with more as the day goes on.

After reading these two devotions, I'm asking myself these questions:

1. What does it really mean to surrender in this area of my life? What would it look like? How do I really apply this stuff so I'm not just reading it, but doing it?

2. In what ways am I the problem? How do I sabotage myself?

Here are my favorite quotes for today:

"God cares deeply about our struggle with eating and exercise but not because he is interested in what size blue jeans we can fit into." (pg. 33)

God always is most interested in the condition of our hearts.

The affirmation: When I am the problem, Jesus Christ is the answer. (pg. 33)

Today has been more difficult to be in control of my eating because I've been emotional over issues with our adoption process. I'm really having to ask God to direct my eating and it has taken more discipline to make the right choices, but I'm doing it with His help.

I really enjoyed reading the conversation on the comments section yesterday. Keep it up! Feel free to talk to each other there and respond to other people's comments. Renee- I really related to your fears about this being a temporary six-week fix. I don't want that either! I've been praying for all of us. How's it going? Any favorite quotes or thoughts about today's reading? Prayer requests?

Also, I have a sidebar blog list that says "Fellow Climbers." If you start a fitness/health blog or are blogging about this book club and want me to add your blog to that list let me know.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Surrender- Day One

Faithfully Fit Book Club
Kick-Off Day

When I picked October 20th as the start date for this book club, it seemed so far away. It came quickly, and I'm excited!

I was really nervous last night before I went to bed. Thinking about the hard work ahead was much harder than actually beginning this morning. I've been doing the supportive eating today and paying attention to serving sizes. I've also been drinking water and writing down what I'm eating and drinking in a food journal. Eating this way feels good. I usually struggle to get fruit and vegetables into my diet, but because the fibrous carb is scheduled into my eating, I've already had a can of V8 juice, eaten carrots from our garden, had fresh salsa with pita chips, and I'm munching on an apple right now. That's a big nutritional improvement for me and it is still early afternoon.

But starting a diet change is nothing new to me. I'm much more excited about what I read today in the book. For those of you still waiting for your books to come in the mail, this week's devotions are all based on the theme of surrender.

It is funny how God often talks to me in themes. Once He picks a theme He wants to get my attention about, it is everywhere. The topic of surrender has come up in so many areas of my life, not just this weight loss journey. I wrote on my main blog last night about how I had to surrender our adoption process to Him and trust Him to do what seems impossible. Keeping weight off long term seems impossible to me, too.

Here's some things from the reading that stood out to me:

"Surrender is not a one-time thing; it is an ongoing process." (pg. 27)

This was a good reminder for me. I think God allows us to struggle through things sometimes so we will keep coming to Him. We need that relationship with Him and so in my life one of the things that keeps me praying and seeking Him is this issue with my weight.

"I'm only giving back to you the works of your own hand. You designed me and you made me to use in your own way." (pg. 28- from Claire's song, "White Flag")

He designed this body so it makes sense that I should be asking Him how to take care of it and to ask for the help to do it His way.

The affirmation: "Jesus is the source of my health and my healing." (pg. 30)

Lasting change will only come from allowing Jesus to change me and to not be turning to worldly wisdom for the help I need.
1. Would you introduce yourself to me if you are reading along with me? It is totally fine if you want to remain anonymous when you comment. I'd just like to hear from you so I can pray for you and we can get to know each other and cheer each other on. Tell us a little about yourself and why you want to read this book.

2. In the book today it said:
"If you have decided to use the buddy system as you go through the next six weeks, try to get together today....During your time together, express hopes, fears, expectations. Talk about your goals and plans."
What about you? hopes...fears...expectations...goals...plans?

3. Any quotes from the book that stood out to you?

God bless your efforts today. Thanks for supporting me!
: )

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tomorrow We Begin! : )

Tomorrow will be the beginning of the Faithfully Fit book club. I'm so excited about those of you who have told me you will be reading along with me, and I'm hoping more will join us as we go along. Lurkers are welcome! : ) You can jump into the discussion any time.

I had some interesting emotions come up today as I thought about getting started. Panic was the first one. Some of these thoughts were revealing about my relationship with food and diets:

What have I done?
Why did I tell people what I'm doing?
What if I can't lose any weight?
I should eat today because tomorrow the pain begins. : )
Could this possibly really work?
Etc. Etc. Etc.

Amid the panic was some excitement, too. I keep remembering last spring ('07) when I was working out with my trainer. I have never, ever felt that kind of energy in my life. Not even when I was a little girl. I've always been a low energy kind of person, but during that very short season I felt alive and full of energy.

One memory stands out so clearly to me. We were at our home group Bible Study having a BBQ and hanging out in the backyard. All of the kids were running around playing while the adults sat in deck chairs, talking, and watching the kids play. After awhile I couldn't stand to sit still, I had to go play with the kids. I had so much fun playing. I could run up their steep hill without even thinking about it. I felt like a kid again and I felt sorry for the grown-ups stuck in their chairs. The following spring ('08) I was pregnant and back in the chairs with the grown ups.

I was fantasizing today about that energy. What could taste as good as that freedom felt? I want to grab on to that feeling for motivation. But again, I know my inner resolve will only go so far and this time I do not have a coach nor a gym membership. I also do not have two hours to spend in the gym every day.

I'm working through the inventory at the back of the book, but I thought tonight I'd close this post with a prayer for the weeks ahead.

Dear Father,

I know that I need to lose weight, but I'm scared of failing again. I've done this over and over again, and I'm weary of it, Lord. Please forgive me for my past failures. Please help me to forgive myself. I feel so ashamed when I look back at the yo-yo dieting and my many, many attempts to be "skinny." Sometimes life threw me curve balls and circumstances made it so hard to succeed, but more often it was just self-sabotage keeping me from my goals. My way has never worked. My inner resolve and willpower have never been strong enough. Please be my strength. I am weak. If this weight battle is dependent upon my inner resolve it is already a lost battle. Help me to do it your way this time, not my way.

Search my heart and shine light where change is needed. I'm scared of starting tomorrow. I don't want to do the hard work that is ahead. Please make me ready to follow your lead. Show me what you want me to learn and give me the strength to do what you say to do. I want to be healthy in every way, most importantly spiritually.

I pray against discouragement. Help me to be good to myself and not beat up on myself anymore.

Please bless my efforts and the efforts of all of the people who are participating in this book club. We all have different reasons for wanting to read the book and we all have different past experiences, but I think we all are seeking your will in this area of our lives, and are in need of healing. I pray these next six weeks will be enlightening, productive, successful, and fun. Show us how to encourage and bless each other.

Most importantly, be glorified in us through this journey.

I love you!

In Jesus' Name I pray,

Your Turn:
1. Anyone want to share how you are feeling about starting tomorrow? Excited? Nervous?
2. Has anyone done the inventory and had any revelations yet?
3. No pressure to do this, but feel free to write your own prayer for yourself and the rest of us in the comments section and we'll pray with you.

See you tomorrow for Day One!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

What To Do About Diet

One of the nice things about this book is that it can be used with any diet and exercise program. I'm not sure what I am going to do about a diet plan. It may evolve as we go. Part of my motivation for doing this book is to break away from my typical diet yo-yo approach so I think it would be counter productive to choose a diet. Instead I am going to work on these things:

- Eat less/Move more: This is easy to say, but I want to find some ways to measure this and hold myself accountable.

- Stay sugar free: For me sugar is the enemy. I want to stay sugar-free for the duration of these 42 days. Because of my baby's thrush, I have been sugar free for the last 2 weeks. I have felt so free from cravings and so much more in control of my appetite. Then yesterday, I baked some organic chocolate chip cookies from a mix that was sweetened with cane juice. I have been craving sugar all day and have eaten so many of the cookies. I was fooled into reintroducing sugar into my system...I now believe cane juice is just another word for sugar- (sugar cane juice maybe?). It really showed me how much sugar affects my appetite and how much I like being free of it.

- Supportive Eating: This is something I learned last spring when I worked with a personal trainer. He taught me to eat in a way that kept my blood sugar level and my metabolism working all day. I was able to eat a lot fewer calories and stay more satisfied.

Here's how it works:
Eat every three to four hours hungry or not. At each meal eat a lean protein, a fibrous carb, and a complex carb. A fibrous carb is a vegetable or a fruit. So an example meal might be chicken with broccoli and a slice of whole wheat bread. It really was amazing how satisfied and level I felt eating that way.

I usually have crashes at different times of day where I'm starving. This usually happens in the late afternoon when it's time for me to start cooking dinner. When I was doing the supportive eating I didn't feel those crashes. I usually ended up eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner and added a morning and afternoon snack.

-Lots of water: I know from past experience that this also helps with appetite control.

That's my plan so far. I'd love to hear what you have planned.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Book Club Preparation- Gather What You Need Pg. 20

(In preparation for the start of Faithfully Fit book club on Monday, I am working through the "How to Use This Book" section on pages 19-23. )

Today I'm focusing on gathering what I need.

My laptop sits on my counter in my kitchen, so I tend to like things to be virtual more than hard copies. It just keeps things more organized for me.
This is how I am going to set things up:

I have my Bible, but I also really like using Bible Gateway online. It has many versions of the Bible and is super easy to use to look up Bible passages.

I thought about doing a hard copy for the notebook, but I spend so much time on my laptop, I decided to set up my notebook there. I made a WORD folder called "Faithfully Fit Notebook" and then I saved a WORD document for each of the sections. As we get going, I might decide to change to a notebook I can hold in my hands, but for now I think having it all on the laptop fits my lifestyle best.

(If you are still waiting for your book to come in the mail, here are the sections you will need for your notebook: scripture, goals, affirmations, journal, insights, and planning.)

Other thoughts...

This morning, I read this devotion on Proverbs 31 Ministries' website. It really made me think about my weight loss battle. I keep begging God to help me and make it all better, but I want it to be as effortless as possible. Don't make me uncomfortable, Lord! Anyway, it was food for thought.

I'm feeling nervous and excited about next week. : )

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Preparing for Monday

The authors of Faithfully Fit recommend you begin preparing one week ahead of your start date. So this week I'm going to be working through the letters from the authors and the "How to Use This Book" section. Then I'll start reading the devotions and journaling about them this Monday, October 20th.

There is still time for you to buy the book online if you want to join us for the book club. I hope you will join us even if you don't buy the book. Feel free to read my journal entries and join in on the discussion. You can jump in anytime. The more the merrier!

Here's one of my favorite quotes from Claire's letter:

"Personally, I have found that anytime the buck stops with me and everything hinges on my inner resolve and fortitude, I am in big trouble. The harder I try to heal myself, the sicker I seem to get!" (pg. 12)

That's why I'm excited about doing this differently this time. All of my other attempts at fitness relied on my inner resolve and self-motivation/willpower. This time I'm leaning on God for the help and healing I need to make it last.

I thought this was interesting, too:

"By now all of us in this country are familiar enough with the various kinds of eating disorders to recognize that weight is not the only indicator of irrational eating." (pg. 12)

I never thought skinny people could have a problem with food. If they were thin, then they must have some gift for eating right and not being addicted to food. I think more of us have issues with food in this country than we even know.

OK- that's enough for now. I'll check back in with more throughout the week.

Anyone else have some favorite quotes or want to talk about what you are doing to prepare for next week?

I'm praying for us and excited about what we will learn.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Book Club Coming Soon

I plan on beginning the book Faithfully Fit on October 20th. I'm hoping that some of you will join me for an online book club.

Here's an excerpt from the back cover:

Faithfully Fit is not a diet, not an exercise plan. it won't
tell you how much you ought to weigh or what your heart rate should be or how many miles you should walk to burn up three cookies and a slice of cheesecake. It offers no quick fixes or miracle cures.

Instead, Faithfully Fit offers motivation, encouragement, and inspiration
to help you change from the inside out-the only kind of change that lasts.

Pray about doing this with me. Each day I'll journal on here about what I read, and then I'm hoping those of you who are reading along with me will have a conversation in the comments section about your response to what you read. I think we can have a lot of fun with this and support each other along the way.

I wanted to let you know early so you can get a copy of the book. I have the 1991 edition that I will be using, but there is a new 2007 revised edition available. I'm hoping they aren't too different if you buy the new version. I think all that changed was the front cover, but it is OK if they are different in some ways. That will just add to the conversation. You can order the old one for as cheap as .75 cents on but both versions are available on and other places.

I'll write more about the book club later and how its going to work. For now, just get the book. : )

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Update on the Four Ws

Three of the four Ws are going pretty well.

Drinking my water is the easy part. There is something about breastfeeding that makes me feel like I'm dying of thirst.

The walking isn't happening yet. A cold bug has been moving through my house and it's my turn to get it. Even when I'm not sick, I haven't figured out yet how to fit exercise into my day.

I knew I wasn't ready to jump into a diet yet, so I decided to start making some observations about how I'm doing and what needs to change. This is what I've discovered so far:

- My portion sizes are way off
- I'm eating more calories than I thought. On Monday, I recorded what I ate on an Excel spreadsheet and tallied up the calories...OUCH. I was shocked at the results. The trip to McDonald's for dinner did not help matters.
- I'm completely addicted to sugar.
- I eat at night when I don't need to.

So as I've prayed for wisdom and willpower, I started looking at these observations. Obviously, if I'm going to lose weight, I've got to scale back my portions, eat less calories, and stop eating so much sugar. Ugh. How easy, right? Not! I felt so discouraged as once again I was reminded that I am so weak in the willpower department.

An interesting little twist happened this week, though. I had a blessing in disguise.

I'm nursing my baby, and I've been dealing with thrush (a yeast infection on my nipples and in his mouth). It has made nursing painful, and I've struggled to get rid of it. In my search for a cure, I've learned that the thrush has moved inside of my milk ducts and dietary changes would be necessary if I ever want to get rid of it. Guess what has to go? You guessed it- sugar. Dairy products, too.

Beginning Tuesday morning, I've been sugar free. Not from willpower, just from sheer necessity. I almost cried Monday night when I thought about giving up all milk and sugar. It felt too hard. But it has been so good for me. I think going cold turkey was the only way I would have been able to break this sugar addiction, and it took the thrush being more painful than the sugar withdrawals to get me to do it.

It has been interesting to see how I'm eating differently now that I can't have milk or sugar. I'm eating healthier because I have to. I actually ate fruit and veggies today. It's a miracle! : )

I know getting the sugar out of my system will help in the willpower department. Interesting answer to prayer!

Goal: -50 lbs
8 pounds gone so far! : )
42 to go

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Starting With the Four Ws

I'm only five weeks postpartum and very sleep deprived, so this journey will have a slow start. I'm in survival mode right now, so I can't dedicate the energy yet it will take to go full boar.

I think that is a good thing. It is giving me time to plan and think. How do I want to go about this this time around? What are my goals? What do I need to do differently to avoid the yo-yo dieting and feelings of failure that have come with my other attempts? I don't have the answers yet. I guess this stage of my climb up my Personal Mount Everest is setting up base camp.

I decided that for right now it is enough to concentrate on what I'm calling the "Four Ws":
  • Water
  • Walking
  • Wisdom
  • Willpower

I'm not ready to start a diet or make any huge lifestyle changes. I'm lucky to fit a shower in each day. There isn't any room for counting calories or Weight Watchers points. Getting in as much water as possible is my first step in the nutrition department.

For exercise I'm just focusing on getting myself moving again and getting outside. I've been pretty housebound so walks are so good for me. At week three after my baby was born, I was walking quite a bit. Something about the cumulative affect of a month of no sleep hit me at week four and into this week and the walking hasn't happened. It's a goal now to make walking a regular part of my routine.

The second two W's are my prayer focus. I need wisdom about how to do it differently and successfully this time around. I need insight into what went wrong each time before and for help in planning how I'll do it this time. I'm also asking for willpower because right now it is seriously lacking. I'm tired in so many ways. When the time is right to commit to doing this again, I'll need supernatural help.

Monday, September 1, 2008

What Does My Blog Title Mean?

Last January, I was given the gift of a personal trainer for Christmas. I was thrilled to see great results as I worked out with Matt. Between January and May, I lost 30 pounds, gained muscle, gained confidence, and had tons of energy for playing with my kids.

During that time, I started a blog called "Becky's Road to Fitness." It was supposed to be an inspiration to other people who were trying to get fit. I posted before and after pictures, went public with my success, and then started gaining back the weight.

Between May and November, I gained all 30 pounds back (+ a few extra I'm afraid) and then I found out I was pregnant. During pregnancy, I gained another 40 pounds. Ashamed of yet another failure in my quest for thinness, I deleted my blog and stopped going to the gym.

Weight issues have been a thorn in my side for as long as I can remember. I was never obese or overly fat, just "chubby" "going through a growth spurt" or "big boned." In second grade, I remember trying to suck in my tummy and by fifth grade I went on my first official diet. Even when I was thin, I didn't appreciate it because the number on the scale wasn't the right number. It has been a battle. A battle I want to win, but a battle that feels too hard to win.

When I was working with Matt, he used a metaphor for my journey. He encouraged me to conquer my own "personal Mount Everest." That concept resonated with me. That's exactly what this has been, this mountain I keep trying to climb. I've attempted it so many times I can't count them all. Yet somehow, I keep standing at the base of the mountain trying to drum up the stamina to try one more time.

I need lasting change, not another diet. I need lasting change, not another gym membership or workout video or piece of exercise equipment. I also need to learn how to avoid burnout and self-sabotage.
I want to stand at the summit of this mountain, shove my victory flag in the ground, and say "I did it!"

That's where this blog comes into the picture. It is going to be the journal of my journey to lasting change. The log book of my "climb to fitness." This post is entry number one in my climbing diary. I haven't decided if I'll even go public with it. I just need a place to process things.

Success for me won't be losing weight. That will be a part of it, but true success for me will be lasting change. It will be freedom from the yo-yo roller coaster ride, it will be freedom from the embarrassment I feel at being overweight, it will be spiritual and physical fitness, freedom from self-medicating with food. It will be being comfortable in my own skin whatever that means.

I know climbing this mountain is going to be a journey. I know many of the pitfalls that lie ahead, and I know I will have to do a lot of soul searching to discover why I have so often attempted this but never reached the summit.

Some of my posts will be humorous (especially when I explain some of the diets I've tried in the past) Some will be just a progress check. Others will be simply processing my thoughts and actions. I learn so much through journaling.

I'm excited to see what discoveries I'll make along the way.