Weighing In

20 Aug

I have decided to make Monday the accountability day for weight loss for no real reason other than I posted about losing weight last Monday. ๐Ÿ™‚

The details:

  • Weight loss goal #1 – 25 lbs lost (goal set 8/13)
  • Progress to date: 2 lbs lost
  • Pounds to go: 23
  • Overall weight loss goal: 50lbs
  • Pounds to go: 48

This week was so-so on the food front and abysmal on the workout front. I did very well with breakfast, lunch and most dinners Mon-Fri. The wheels came off sightly during the weekend. Even so, I was mindful of not absolutely letting go…I made better choices but when tequila/sangria are involved, the pretense of really sticking to that 500 cal or less goal fades away. I did not hit the gym once. I knew at the beginning of the week that this was likely just due to the sheer volume of plans I had made for myself. I was not home until after 9pm Mon-Fri either due to social or work related plans, which is totally an excuse but one I can deal with. Since this first week was mainly about getting myself used to eating smaller meals I am allowing myself to be okay with this but it can not happen two weeks in a row.

All of that being said the goals for this week are pretty simple:

  • Stick to a calorie intake of 1200-1300 on days when I do not workout, adjust for calories burned during workouts on days that I do.
  • Get in some form of workout at least four times this week.
  • Dinner out limited to three times max this week.

Before I fell apart diet/weight loss/exercise-wise earlier this year I was running 3-4miles at least twice a week. I want to get that back so I have decided to go back to the basics and re-start Couch to 5k. Depending upon how it goes the first week I will likely modify the plan to increase running times more quickly. We are having uncharacteristically “cooler” August weather in Texas this week, as in 90 degree highs instead of 105, so I plan to take the runs outside. Randall is joining my gym this week and he will be starting his workouts as well, so it should be a good week in the Ford House.

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You Are Here.

13 Aug

If my life was a map this would be a point of interest and possibly a crossroads. The last two years have changed me irreversibly. I will never be able to go back to the person I was but at the same time I know the evolution is incomplete and I will continue to change from here. This is my lyrically waxed introduction to an update post, but all pretentiousness aside, things are okay. They have been better but for now, they are okay.

First and foremost, we met with our fertility doctor (RE.) We had a long conversation and decided that the best path for us at this point is to pursue IVF. This proposition is both scary and exciting at the same time. It’s scary because it means we need about $17,000 to conceive a child, which even under the best of financial circumstances is a daunting amount of money to spend on a chance. It’s exciting because our the RE gave us a 70-80% chance of success, odds that are quite a bit better than those in Vegas or even those of a coin toss but still a gamble nonetheless. Randall and I have decided that we will be moving toward IVF, we have also decided that we will be taking a break from all things trying to conceive until we are mentally ready to tackle the “big guns” of infertility treatment. I have been waiting for ovulation, peeing on sticks, tracking my temperature, getting my hopes up and then getting them smashed to pieces for nearly two years now. I am mentally exhausted from it all and think a time out will do us a world of good.

As always, there is another reason for the time out as well. The RE gave us a 70-80% chance with IVF. What will make the difference between 70 and 80 percent is my weight. I weighed this morning and I am up 25 pounds from my lowest weight (for those who are just joining in I lost 65 pounds in 2011 from diet and exercise.) 10 pounds of this existed before we began fertility treatment – when I hit that low point, I also hit a plateau; after losing weight consistently for many months the scale would not budge. For awhile I really made an effort, I mixed up my workouts, tried calorie gains and deficits but as nothing worked I got lazy and stopped counting calories. The difference this time was that unlike my pre-weight loss days when I ate with abandon completely in the dark about the damage I was doing, I knew just how much I could eat/workout to minimize weight loss or gain. I held steady at those +10 pounds for about six months. Then we started fertility treatment and the wheels fell off. I am going to be honest, I heard the doctor say that I could expect a weight gain of about five pounds per treatment cycle and it was like he had given me the golden ticket to gain without shame. I ate and ate and ate and stopped working out because the meds drained me. I truly believed that I would get pregnant the first cycle and then having gained “a little” weight wouldn’t be that big of a deal. Then when the first cycle failed I was sad and mad and so I ate to make myself feel better. I baked and cooked my way to another weight gain but again…I would be pregnant soon, so it wouldn’t matter, right? So, here I stand with 15 “fertility treatment” pounds and 10 more from just being lazy. To give ourselves the best possible chance at IVF success, I need to lose 50 pounds. I am mad at myself because it would only be 25 if I hadn’t let myself go…but at the same time, nothing good is going to come of that anger, so I have to move on.

So, today is the day. I am going back to the basics, back to what I know works. I ordered a new pair of running shoes that will arrive today. I bought some new workout tops and bottoms that actually fit my +25lbs self. I restarted calorie counting using MyFitnessPal and have signed up for a 5k on 9/29, I am actually going to use my gym membership. This is happening. I have battled my weight all of my adult life and though the doctor assures me that my weight issues have not led to our infertility thus far, I refuse to allow something I know I can beat keep me from living my full life. Watching the closing ceremonies of the Olympics last night, a commercial kept playing about putting your goals on the line, online. So that’s what I am doing.

The Goals:

  • Lose 50 pounds (or more) in six to eight months (aiming for 2 pounds a week)
  • Get my 5k back to where it was…aim for some PRs
  • Get my diet under control and stick to my daily calorie allotment
  • Stop treating my sadness with baked goods (fear not those who enjoyed the muffin recipe, this by no means will be the end of baking for me…it will just be the end of eating the majority of everything I bake to make myself feel better.) ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Get Randall involved in both diet and exercise to help him shed his IF treatment pounds.
  • Get truly happy and enjoy being myself again

I am excited about this. I know from experience that you have to want to do something like this to make it happen and I know that for the first time in a while, I want to do this. So, I will. ๐Ÿ™‚

Finding My Grace Friday

10 Aug

I typed this out but never actually published it on Friday, so it’s a pretend post from the past…enjoy!

1. What is something small that you take for granted each day? Sunglasses. I know this sounds ridiculous, but I recently went without sunglasses for a bit and I realized just how much I love and need them. I have lighter colored eyes and it is impossible for me to drive comfortably without them. So thank you, sunshades!

2. What is something you know you are so lucky to have that others donโ€™t?Randall is extremely handy. This year alone he has laid tile, re-tiled our fireplace and will be beginning the process of laying wood floors tonight. We have a saved so much money just by using his skills and that is a true blessing.

3. What is something you know you need to be more grateful for and need to work on? I am going to write about it next week, but lately I have been hating on myself for gaining back some of the weight I lost when I did my “big” weight loss last year/early this year. I need to work on not only recognizing that some of the weight has come from things beyond my control (i.e. mass amounts of IF treatment hormones) but also being thankful for the fact that I am strong enough to get where I want to be weight wise and have the tools to make this happen…then I need to channel that and actually make it happen.

4. How did you do on being more grateful for your #3 item from last week? I have really worked on living in the now and being thankful for what I have. I think it is working because I have really noticed how much I love my house/car/life in the last couple of weeks. We are so very lucky to have what we do when so many don’t…there is no reason to seek the “next big thing” right now…things are good.

Have a good weekend. :)

Baking the Knockoff Market Way

7 Aug

I feel like this blog has been kind of all infertility, all the time lately and it’s not really an accurate representation of how I live my day to day life. I started the blog to chronicle all aspects of my life and there is one area of interest that I have never blogged about, but absolutely love: baking. Almost completely incompatible with weight loss, baking is something I do to release stress (got some of that lately) and really enjoy.

Last Sunday we went to Central Market to get my grandmother some okra chips. Random: she is crazy about these things and was jonesing for some. Her level of love for said okra chips is unrivaled as they are $10/lb and she asked for two pounds…shipped via overnight shipping to her door. Being a good granddaughter, I got them on Sunday and she was munching okra chips by Tuesday. Honestly though, with all pretenses of good grandaugthering aside, I didn’t really mind going to get them at all becauseย  I adore Central Market and have a special love for the “fat kid” sections of baked goods and cheese.

While strolling through the bakery, I noticed a large selection of muffins and encouraged Randall to pick out some for us to have for breakfast during the week since he is picky and I (being the aforementioned fat kid) am decidedly not. He went with the Sour Cream Pecan and goodness gracious, was that a great choice. These muffins were amazing, so much so Randall got none and I was very happy for four days. On the fifth day though, I realized that a) $5.99 for four muffins was kind of outrageous, b) Central Market is kind of far from us and c) I am a really good baker.

You can guess where this is going…I bring you the Knockoff Market Sour Cream Cinnamon Pecan Muffin. I Googled and found a base recipe here, then fiddled with it as I saw fit. P.S. These muffins probably should not be eaten daily…they are not part of ANY diet plan, but would be excellent for a special occasion or breakfast gathering. Or you can eat them every day, just don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Knockoff Market Sour Cream Cinnamon Pecan Muffin

Heat oven to 350 and either grease/flour your muffin tins or use liners.

Muffin batter:
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup Butter Crisco (you can use regular butter, softened here…I am just a big fan of Butter Crisco for keeping baked goods moist)
  • 1/4 cup milk (I actually eyeballed this…so this is an estimate, but its one I feel good about)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2-3/4 cup finely chopped pecans (add 1/2 cup, see how you feel about the pecan ratio then add the additional 1/4 cup if you’d like)
  • Combine all dry ingredients in a bowl or stand mixer, then add egg, sour cream, butter (Crisco) and vanilla and combine until moistened. Add milk until fully incorporated then fold in pecans.
Topping:
  • 1 to 1 and 1/2 cups finely chopped pecans (again this is a preference – I went 1.5 cups)
  • 1/3 cup butter melted
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (more if you are a big cinnamon fan, less if not)
  • Combine all ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
  • Fill muffin tins half full and then put enough topping to cover each muffin with an even layer of cinnamon sugar goodness. Bake for approximately 20 minutes depending on how quickly your oven cooks. I got 6 extra-large and 8 mini muffins out of this recipe. I estimate that you would get 15 regular sized muffins.
These may not be the easiest things you ever make…
…but they will be one of the tastiest!
Happy baking!

Someday

5 Aug

Rob Thomas really said it better than I could have:

You can go
You can start all over again
You can try to find a way to make another day go by
You can hide
Hold all your feelings inside
You can try to carry on when all you want to do is cry

And maybe someday
We’ll figure all this out
Try to put an end to all our doubt
Try to find a way to make things better now and
Maybe someday we’ll live our lives out loud
We’ll be better off somehow
Someday

Our second IUI was a bust. We found out Friday afternoon (so you’ll have to excuse the bout of lost ‘grace’, I just didn’t feel authentic writing something I absolutely wasn’t feeling.) This one came harder than the last. Last time we believed it was just a trial run for the doctor, that he was still learning us and that the next round would be the one. We allowed ourselves hope. We stayed positive and just knew all of the work would be worth it this time. It was heartbreaking when, once again, it wasn’t.

Our doctor will allow us one more IUI but we kind of feel like it isn’t for us. It’s commonly said that the definition of insanity is doing the same things over again and expecting different results. Going for third IUI feels a little like insanity at this point. We are setting up a meeting with our doctor next week to hash out both the past and the possible future, but at this point it truly comes down to what Randall and I decide is best for us. Unfortunately none of these decisions will come easily, painlessly or affordably.

Regardless of our final decision we have to carry on now and we will. We’re talking about vacations and home remodeling, making holiday plans and trying to be thankful and appreciative of what we do have rather than what we don’t. Like Rob says, we’ll be better off someday.

Distraction Action

2 Aug

I thought about blogging about this whole CFA deal but thought better of it because I am so burnt out. I will say however that the past week or so has really allowed me to see a side of some people I didn’t know existed and really don’t care to know. It’s one thing to be true to your beliefs and say so, it’s completely another beast to be a vitriol spewing hate monger. If I never see another derogatory word for a homosexual person in my lifetime, it will be to soon.

CFA-debate aside, it’s been a good couple of weeks. I have been taking it easy and trying to keep it positive. Tomorrow is d-day, so we’ll see.

I have had two main distractions the last two weeks. The first is the one I share with people worldwide, the Olympics. I have found myself completely captivated with the Games and the athletes. I can tell you tons of factoids and have actually gasped aloud a few times while watching.

Though I am not normally this into the Olympics and assume it’s the needed distraction factor keeping me hooked, the Olympics do hold a special place for me because we moved into our house in late July 2008. I will never forget the feeling of watching Michael Phelps going for gold while sitting on my very own couch in my very own home.

That’s a fitting transition as the next distraction has been house related. We undertook the most expensive Pinterest project we’ve attempted to date last weekend. We took our standard, builder installed fireplace from this:

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To this:

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To this:

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We took the fireplace from 12×12 ceramic tiles to travertine subway tiles. I love it and think it really adds to the room. Next stop are our wood floors (finally!) and some new paint colors.

The women’s all around is back on, so this blog is abruptly over. ๐Ÿ™‚ Until my grace is found tomorrow, have a good night.

Finding My Grace Friday

27 Jul

Facebook can be many things…a source of hurt, a place to share joy, somewhere to make yourself look like an ass; but lately for me Facebook has been a real and constant reminder that even whenever things are “normal”, life is a very fragile thing that can in no way be taken for granted. If you have healthy children, hug them tight. If you have had a healthy, full term pregnancy, celebrate it and give thanks to God. This morning, finding my grace isn’t hard to do, the things to be thankful for are right in front of my eyes.

1. What is something small that you take for granted each day? Titan. Though he really can not be called “small”, having the three-foot, 125 lb mound of joy in my life has made my life so much richer. His velvet ears and club of death tail are enough to make even the worst things a little more manageable.

2. What is something you know you are so lucky to have that others donโ€™t? I have a strong extended family and a group of people who took me on as family when my immediate family crumbled. Having aunties, grandparents and cousins that are no more related to you than a stranger on the street but love you and treat you like you were born in to their family is a larger blessing than even those with just a loving extended family have. I am very, very, very blessed.

3. What is something you know you need to be more grateful for and need to work on? I feel like I can’t phone it in and carry the IF journey over into next week, so…I really need to work on being happier with what we have now. I am guilty, like I am sure many are, of wanting to have more than I do now. It’s not a greedy materialism that drives this need, it’s just a feeling that I am stalling. I was EXTREMELY blessed to be able to become a homeowner at 22. I remain extremely blessed that we have what we do in our mid-late 20’s…but because I “got it all” so early on I am plagued by the need to go bigger and better. I feel like I am not moving forward fast enough but this is absolutely ridiculous. We could literally stay exactly like we are right now and be better off than 50% (likely more) of Americans our age and even older than us. I need to work on being more thankful for this. Like, really need to work on it.

4. How did you do on being more grateful for your #3 item from last week? Something awesome has happened in regards to being more thankful for the ability to do IF treatment. By working on seeing the positives in this process and being thankful for our good fortune I have been able to have a more positive outlook in general about this cycle. Even though I feel “normal”, I still believe it will work. I have also been able to realize that if it doesn’t, it’s okay. We will not only survive it, we’ll be stronger for it.

Have a good weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚