Thursday, July 19, 2012

The underbelly

I have trust issues.  No, it's true,  I don't trust anybody.  Not sure how I became such a trust-a-phobe, but I'm sure it has to do with my deep dark child hood etc. 

To feel vulnerable is a scary thing.  Truly it's probably the thing that scares me the most.  I mean it gives me a fucking stomach ache and nausea and I get the cold sweats.  When I freely give my trust to someone, it's a big deal.  It means that I sense something in them, integrity wise that will keep me secure.

People like myself have a very tough outer layer.  Rhinoceros hide my mother used to call it.  Very tough, multi-layered defense mechanisms in the extreme.  But what you might not know is that those mechanisms are put in place to protect a very soft delicate underbelly.  A place where we can be eviscerated at any moment by a single thrust.  If we expose our underbelly to you, if you betray us you can kill us.  That's the very thought that wakes me up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat and furthermore is the one trigger that I need to address the most in my behavior modification plan. 

Somebody said something the other day to me about people eating because being enveloped in fat makes them feel less vulnerable.  Sort of a stunning statement and one that rang especially true to me.  It's another layer of defense.  It's a way to keep people away from your soft underbelly and their ability to eviscerate you.  Ringing affirmative, gaining weight was another way for me to feel less vulnerable. 

I noticed the other day that I have allowed more people into my life and let them get closer to me than I usually do.  I trust them.  I really do.  But as soon as I trust them I still get that feeling of defenselessness.  That definitely triggers a desire to cover my under belly, to protect my core with another layer  This is not going to be an easy fix folks.  This is a core defense of mine.  But it keeps me from a level of intimacy that I should have and it keeps me in a mindset that is inherently self destructive.  Ironic that the very thing that you use for defense is the thing that is destructive to a healthy self.

So, I began last week to work on these issues.  I picked a therapist and promised myself to work very diligently to alter this defense.  It's going to take awhile.

In the meantime I have not submitted to my desire to increase my mass in order to protect myself.  I am still on goal and working hard to keep the weight off, eat healthy and change my lifestyle.  By the end of July I expect to be 10 additional pounds less protected than I am now.  :)

If any of you are suffering through the same type of issues I encourage you to seek assistance.  Sometimes as smart as we like to think we are we have to have help.  Get some.


Friday, June 29, 2012

On the Go!!

It's been awhile since I've blogged.  I have no excuse other than I've been relocated for the summer and am traveling extensively.  Which brings me to the subject of my blog today.  Adopting eating behaviors that are consistent, at home and on the go.

Used to be that when I went to visit friends or was traveling for work I would eat like crap.  There's is so much stuff to choose from out on the road, and restaurants...forget about it.  I used to lose my mind in restaurants.  I love appetizers and the more gluten laden the better.  Bread and rolls, especially really nutty flavored dark bread is like crack for me.  (I'm sitting here thinking about the flavor and drooling).  So in the old days I would totally let down any sort of eating plan and go right for the bad stuff.  The highly processed food with too much sodium and fat and carbs was like a siren calling in my ear.  Needless to say that once I had partaken of any of that, specifically the molten fudge lava brownie, I would immediately return home and my eating plan would be shot to hell.  The trick to this whole thing as I've found is you have to be consistent.  Just because I cross the city limits does not mean that any of my issues change.  The realization of this has kept me on track to meet my goal to change my eating behaviors and patterns and has kept me losing weight and eating healthy whilst jetting across the country.

I've also found ways that I can work out while I'm traveling.  I carry stress bands with me and an exercise ball to work out in my hotel room.  Most hotels now have at least some exercise equipment and if nothing else you can always go for a hike or a walk.  Again, consistent behavior has been my savior in this endeavor.  I must confess it's not easy to change patterns in life.  It finally hit me like a bolt of lightening out of the sky that nothing changes unless I change and it's not something you can accomplish by taking a pill or just wishing.  It's damn hard work and you have to want it bad.   

Since I have opened up my mind to change I see that there are broader choices out there.  I now peruse the menu looking for non processed items that I can eat and avoid all the sugar, fat and sodium.  I still get to go to restaurants with friends and enjoy the social aspect of eating and visiting and drinking some wine, while still practicing those behaviors that HAVE to become second nature to me.

I'm not there yet folks.  Everyday gets a little easier and I have to do much less thinking about how to behave, but like any human being I slip.  The trick is to get right back to it.

I can report that I made my goal for the month of June and lost 10 more pounds.  That is a total of 75 pounds.  That seems like a lot.  Carry 75 pound weights around for a day and see how tired you get, how much your joints ache and realize how little you can do.  I'm half way to where I need to be weight wise.  I'm getting there slowly behavior wise. 

I decided that at the end of each blog I will post a recipe that I have found or invented.  Today's is Broccoli Slaw with Almonds

1 cup broccoli slaw
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup slivered almonds
cajun spice

Braise the broccoli slaw and almonds in olive oil until slightly tender.  Add a teaspoon of cajun spice.

It's yummy, even if you hate broccoli.

If you are interested in getting some assistance with weight loss or pursuing behavior change go to  She can help.  

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Dis and Dat

Sorry I haven't posted in awhile, I've been sick.   I never get sick, but last week I started to get a tickle in my throat and by Tuesday I felt like stomped crap.  At any rate I thought I would update everyone as to the progress of operation life change. 

I did make my goal weight for May.  I lost 10 more pounds.  My goal this month is to do the same. 

I haven't been able to workout for 3 days and it's driving me crazy.  I think I am becoming addicted to how I feel when I work out.  Not to actually working out mind you.  That still sucks.  But after I'm done and the endorphins are pulsing through my system I feel fantastic.  It also helps that I'm starting to be able to do many more physical activities.  My goal for the end of the summer is to take the 10 mile hike up Mount Baldy in the Uinta Mountains.  I just hope I start feeling better so I don't lose my stamina. 

I will say one thing.  This whole process is becoming routine for me.  The food that I eat and getting up everyday and exercising.  I'm finding that the choices I make come more naturally now and I have to think less about them.  Instead of reaching for a Cinnamon Roll at work, I grab a banana.  So I feel like I'm making real progress toward substantial behavior changes. 

Thursday, May 24, 2012


When I started this whole process I decided that I needed to do an inventory to find out some important information.  Without information, there is no transformation. 

Eat. Sleep. Move 

I had to take stock and measure not just what I was eating, but how much I was moving and sleeping.  People underestimate how important the last two items affect your health.  Not just moving to exercise, but how much do you move in an average day.  I had no idea how sedentary I had become.  My job now entails sitting at a desk 8 hours a day, only moving to get a cup of coffee or to find files.  Never mind exercising, I wasn't moving at all during the day and very little at night.  So I took stock.  I measured not just my steps with a pedometer, but how many miles I logged on the exercise machines or miles I walked, I measured how much yard work I did and walking around the big box stores or at the mall.  It was interesting that when I became more conscious of how little I was moving how easy it was to increase. 

So in addition to keeping a food diary I keep a exercise chart and a sleep chart.  I've mentioned before how important it is for a person to get sufficient sleep.  I have noticed that since I started to keep track of the amount of sleep I'm getting, I can accurately guess how much weight I'm losing.  It's true, the better you sleep, the more weight you lose.  The more you sleep, the better you move.  The more you sleep, the better your attitude toward this whole process.  So keeping track is now a must for me. 

Does this all seem a little obsessive?  It does to me sometimes.  I think there is a fine line between being focused and being compulsive and I do at times cross that line.  But again, if I don't inventory my mental state I wouldn't notice that I was being overly focused, that inventory helps keep me balanced. 

You have to walk that fine line.  You have to be aware without being obsessed.  I often use to wonder how people with total body dis-morphia get that way, I wonder no longer.  We get busy in this world and we focus on other things.  How much money we make, how much crap we can buy, how much the neighbors buy.  We lose track of ourselves.  Inventorying is a way for us to find ourselves again.

At this point I'm hoping that this constant surveillance will soon move into a type of observation that is less focused and more natural.  Keeping track of my body, mind and attitude without having to be obsessive about it.  That's when I know that the lifestyle change is truly taking affect.  Like Zen it will be doing nothing and achieving much.

An update, I'm online to reach my goal of a ten pound weight loss in the month of May.  I have 3 more pounds to go.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Eating Plan

Sorry I haven't posted in a few weeks, life sometimes interrupts. 

Many of you have asked about what eating plan I'm following and I do recall that I said I would share that during this process.  I'm a bit hesitant though because it's not my plan, I received it from someone else and I don't want to step on their toes economically or otherwise in order to share.  So I'm looking for a way to link to their site and they may ask for a small fee for the advice.  I will keep you up to date as to that process. 

Trust.  Big Issue with me.  I trust no one.  Never have.  While that is a defensive mechanism I've built over time in response to others trustworthiness, or lack thereof, its' not a trait I'm particularly fond of.  The question for me is how to negate my natural instincts and go with my head, not my gut. 

In the past month I've had this situation come up several times.  I'll make a decision with my head and afterword I get intense buyers remorse.  I start to question myself and it's because while my head says this is ok, you can trust this situation, you can trust these individuals, my guts are tied up in knots.  In fact my instincts bombard me with icky feelings and it quite literally drives me crazy. 

I had not realized how much of my decision making is not in my head.  A year ago I would have told you just the opposite in fact.  I've started to notice that I intuitively pick up on feelings, vibes and energy when I decide things.  I've hired many a person not based on their qualifications, but on the vibe I get from them.  I just never realized that I was doing it.  Now that I do, I just need to learn to trust it.  Because quite frankly I have really good instincts.  I also need to learn that sometimes my head isn't right, those icky feelings are trying to tell me something that I need to know. 

Before this epiphany I think I used to try and avoid those icky feelings.  I would ignore them, I would try to eat them away, drink them away, or some other avoidance mechanism.  Quite frankly they are not fun feelings.  But a wise person once told me you have to feel, good or bad, you have to allow yourself those emotions, or you are dead inside.  I've spent my whole life trying to avoid the nasty icky instincts that I have, when I really should have opened myself up to them, they have served me well, if subconsciously. 

I hope everybody has a great weekend.  And remember, let people in your life fuck up every once in while.  That's what makes them human and that's what makes them loveable.  I for one don't want to be in a relationship with a robot.  I apologize to anybody out there who I've judged lacking because they were going thru their shit.  I'll try my best not to do that anymore. 

Good weekend all. 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Just call me Daffy Duck

I tend to slam through life like the proverbial bull in a china shop.  I can't remember ever being reflective, just blast through to the next thing at mach 1 with my hair on fire.  This tendency, while not exactly expansive has served it's purpose in my life.  I have no regrets.  I don't think back and say if only I had done it this way, or if I had made this decision, or not done this.  I've never had a guilty conscience, nor do I want to go back and have do overs.  Recently I have figured out that this modus operandi is a survival technique. I needed it to navigate my way through the mine fields of my existence, however perhaps I have grown past the point in my life when I needed to operate this way and needed to search out a more meaningful existence. 

I don't know why it is but I've been very introspective of late.  I've been thinking about how I got to where I am, I guess in preparation to figure out where I'm going from here.  For the first time in my life I am thinking not just in the present, but in the future; and more specifically how my present behavior and the choices I make are going to affect my future.

My journey isn't just about weight loss folks.  You might say I've had a series of small epiphanies.  Nothing grandiose, just little every day mini enlightenment.   Maybe it's because I'm sitting still for periods of time now days, instead of doing a complete daffy duck impression.  Or maybe it's because somebody who I admired as shown me the example of what a blessing a fully examined life can be.  That in order to grow as an individual I need to figure out how to make better decisions.  Maybe it's my current obsession with reading the obituaries in the paper and wondering what mine might say and how I am defined.  Not how you define me, but how do I define myself.  If I'm not Mary Lou's daughter or Jacob's mother, or so and so's boss, who the hell am I?  Once I started on this question it opened up a whole bunch of new cans of worms. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that I have any regrets about the decisions I've made to this point, I'm just saying that in reviewing the decisions I've made I might make a different choice in the future. I did some dumb ass things in my youth, and frankly I continue to do dumb ass things, but if I'm to become a fully evolved Sarah, I need to make some changes and become less reactionary and more thoughtful.  Wish me luck. 

I have lost an additional 5 pounds in the last week.  I don't know why or how, I haven't altered anything I'm doing.  I'll take it even if I don't know how I did it.

Stay tuned, next week I'm going to address my working out and rediscovering the athlete I buried under layers of fat.



Sunday, April 29, 2012

Goal Met

Well it's official.  I am 10 pounds lighter at the end of April.  That was my goal and I achieved it and I'm actually two days early. 

Was a rough month.  Work has been very stressful.  I've plateaued for about a week.  I haven't been getting the best sleep in the world.  But through it all I've kept my head and learned a bunch of new things and alas, I have success.  This blog has definitely helped in that when I'm writing I have to think about what is going on with me and it helps me deal with that in a manner not usual, but helpful.  

Next month's goal is the same; 10 pounds.  I've lost, neigh, dropped a total of 55 pounds.  While I'm proud of myself, I don't want to get too wrapped up in the moment.  It's nice to lose that kind of weight, but I will be successful when I can honestly say that I've changed my lifestyle and become a more complete, evolved and healthier human being.  That in the end is what this process is all about. 

Thanks for all the support out there, it's been awesome.