the long road to healthy

November 11, 2009

a fresh start

Filed under: family, fitness, weigh in — karena @ 5:25 pm

When I wincingly stepped on the scale this morning, it did not groan under my feet and cease functioning. No warning lights flashed, no sirens went off.  Today’s weigh in — 170 even.  Not great, but given the abuse I’ve handed my body over recent weeks, not bad.

My plan for this week is simple — get back on track.  Get back to counting calories and watching portions.  Get back to a daily exercise regime.  No huge changes or ultimatums.  Calories in, calories out.  So far this week, I’ve logged a whopping seven miles — that’s a combination of walking and elliptical.  Not huge, but a hell of a lot more than I’ve logged in weeks, so I’m allowing myself a measure of pride.

In December we’re taking the kids to Paris and I’m going to race my husband to the top of the Eiffel Tower (well, the second stage — you can’t actually walk all the way to the top), so I’m on a mission.  It would be a lot easier to beat him if I was carrying…. say, ten pounds less up the stairs with me.  That’s my goal: 160 by December 22nd.


November 10, 2009


Filed under: general, keeping it real — karena @ 8:23 pm

The girls at the Sisterhood — many of them, anyway — just finished training for and running a 5K.  Great job, girls! I am so in awe of you!  And so pissed off at myself.  Their first days of talking about running the 5K were my last days around here.  I got sidetracked, I got busy, I got… caught up in the fact that I wasn’t making progress and let myself slide.  If I’d hung in there, maybe I’d be beaming at having run a 5K, too.

I’ve been beating myself up about this, pretty badly, for nearly a week now.  But no more, I say!  Enough guilt.  Enough woe is me crap.  It’s time to pull up my big-girl panties, do the work, and reap the rewards.

Tomorrow is weigh-in day at the Sisterhood.  I will show up, I will admit to the god-awful number I read on the scale tomorrow morning, and I will start anew.

November 9, 2009

well, that was a mistake

Filed under: keeping it real — karena @ 11:08 am

So, in the past month of not blogging, I’ve gained five pounds.  How in the hell that happened I’m not sure.  Oh, wait! It probably has something to do with the two pints of Ben and Jerry’s I’ve had in the last month.  And a few too many pizzas.  Oh, and the burger I ate last night that had 35 grams of fat.  Before I put cheese and bacon on it.


So after a month of debauchery, I’m sick of myself.  Going to update the blog, head on over to the Sisterhood and get some tough love to get me back on track.

October 8, 2009

stating the obvious

Filed under: keeping it real — karena @ 3:08 pm

I don’t have time to maintain this blog right now.

I’m not shutting down, giving up, or moving on.  But I am taking a brief hiatus from this forum.  Life seems so incredibly busy right now — the few minutes I get to myself seem better spent, for now, reading a book or crocheting socks than spent blogging about weight loss that isn’t happening.

Still blogging at the homeschool site, as well as the sporadic post on our home blog.    Hopefully see you soon!

September 21, 2009

True Confessions Monday

Filed under: family, fitness, keeping it real — karena @ 3:13 pm

It’s time I finally got my act together and recommitted to this journey.  It’s a long road, but it’ll be a hell of a lot longer if I continue walking backwards.  So, in an effort to get back on track, here are my true confessions.

1. Last Monday morning, I officially started homeschooling my five year old.

2. Monday afternoon, I seriously contemplated sending him to the local schools.

3.  This week has been all about finding the balance of school and parenting.

4.  It has NOT been about exercise and portion control and healthy eating.

5.  I’ve had at least a glass of wine every evening.  Often more than one.

6.   My husband and I always swore we’d never get a Wii.

7.  We scoffed at people who raved about how great it was.

8.  Saturday we caved and bought one.

9.  I’ve had more fun in the last two days than I’d have thought possible.

10.  Things are looking up.

September 15, 2009

haste ye back

Filed under: family, fitness, keeping it real — karena @ 7:18 pm

We’re back, and slowly attempting to get back to normal life, whatever that is.  Scotland was…. awesome.  Incredible.  Bonny.  My husband and I spent a good portion of our time there trying to figure out if there was really, truly, a way we could stay there permanently.  We both know it’s simply not practical, but, oh!  In our hearts we desperately wish it were!  It was two weeks of relaxation, luscious surroundings, enjoying each other and the kids, and visiting with good friends.  And the bonus?  No internet.  Funny, I imagined I’d go stir crazy without it, but it was wonderful.  No constant e-mail checking, no blog updates, no mindless celebrity gossip.  I’ve actually been loathe to sit down at the computer since we returned home on Sunday.

I gained back nearly two pounds over the two weeks we were gone.  Actually, I’m rather amazed that it was only that much.  Oh, I had such high aspirations!  I took my mat, and plenty of Hilary and Elsie podcasts to keep me motivated.  But the lure of the pub, and good conversation, and freshly caught fish and chips… it was all too much.  I drank too much, ate too much, and relaxed too much.

But now… sigh… we’re back.  Jillian has been busting my ass for the last two days.  Hundreds of loads of laundry have been done.  Billing has been caught up.  Healthy food is being ingested.  There’s no way I’m ready to weigh in tomorrow, but I’m trying to get back on track.  And that’s got to count for something.

August 24, 2009

vacation, all I ever wanted

Filed under: keeping it real, oops — karena @ 7:03 pm

It’s been a difficult week around here.  I’ve been off my game, so to speak.  We leave for vacation on Friday, I’m running around like a madwoman trying to pack and remember everything and make last minute arrangements.  My eating has been off.  My exercise has been WAY off.  Like nearly non-existent.  And I’ve been feeling it.  I’ve been bitchy, and stiff, and out of sorts, and frazzled.  I’m not sure if my sudden aversion to exercise in any form has anything to do with this, but I know I’ve been extremely reluctant to do anything physical the last few days.

Today I cleaned the entire house, top to bottom, which took nearly four hours.  Then I fought with my moody five year old, and decided I might have an aneurysm if I didn’t do SOMETHING to cope with my stress, so I got out the yoga mat.  I only got in 30 minutes, but it did help immensely with my mood.  However, tonight the pesky varicose vein in my right leg, under my knee, is complaining about the sudden onslaught of work after nearly a week of vacation. I need to be more aware of my body and be kinder to it.  While still whipping it into shape.  Sigh… it’s a conundrum.

One monumental decision I’ve made in the last few days: when we return from Scotland, I will no longer be drinking.  At all.  I seem to have an *all or nothing* mentality, and whereas that can be a help or a hindrance in some areas of your life, with alcohol that can be a real problem.  A danger even.  Not that I feel I AM in danger, but I don’t want that to ever become a possibility.  And for me, it’s simply easier not to imbibe than to imbibe on occasion.  It would be, well, stupid, to make a vow of abstinence right before going on vacation.  But when we return, I’ll be sipping herbal tea in the evenings.

I am SO ready for this vacation!  I’m going to curl up with Baron Baptiste’s “40 Days to Personal Revolution” and form a game plan for my return.  I’m also going to curl up with many a trashy romance novel.  I’m going to let my husband cook on occasion, and do the dishes all the time.  We’re going to eat out at least a few times a week (we’re vegetarian, and it’s difficult to eat out, so we self-cater our holidays for the most part).  I’m going to Borders and look for books!!!!!!!!  I haven’t been to a real bookstore in nearly a year (we live in Belgium, and although my French is at about a second grade reading level, that doesn’t feed my brain anything except French).  I’m going to visit with my best friend.  I’m going to see beautiful, awe-inspiring sights, I’m going to play with my kids, I’m going to cuddle with my normally uptight husband.  I am SO ready for this vacation!

August 20, 2009

fear and self-loathing in downward-facing dog

Filed under: fitness, keeping it real, yoga — karena @ 1:43 pm

Before I get to the crux of this post, I have to give you a little background.  I used to be really overweight.  When I was 21-ish, I weighed 230 pounds.  I walked and dieted my way down to 122.  From the waist up I looked almost gaunt, like a cross-country runner.  From the waist down, however, I still looked fat.  No amount of walking, and later, running, and dieting could move it from my legs.  And I don’t mean just my thighs, my calves as well.  I spent my life in jeans and capris and long skirts to hide my *shame* from the world.  People, I lived in Hawaii for two years and never wore shorts.  Slowly over the years I put back on nearly half the weight I had lost.  (That’s including three pregnancies, to be fair to myself.)  It has spread nice and evenly all over my body.  So… my legs are bigger than ever.

The ONLY time I wear shorts is if I’m working out and it’s just too darned hot to wear yoga pants or capris.  It’s 96 here today.  96.  In Belgium.  Something is not right.  Anyway, despite the heat I really wanted to get my power yoga practice in today, so I slipped into a pair of shorts and a T.  As I was rolling out my mat in front of the fan, which is right in front of our open French doors, I happened to glance up at the mirror on the other side of the room.  The sun did a fantastic job of highlighting each and every cottage cheese-like dimple on my thighs.  The front of my thighs.  I just wanted to cry when I saw that.

But crying isn’t going to help.  So I started my practice.  I know most of you who read this blog aren’t into yoga, but you’re probably familiar with some of the poses/phrases.  And all of us who love Jillian understand the idea of not *phoning it in.* So I’m putting my body image issues aside and trying to really be present in what I’m doing.  The practice is intense, I’m focused on my breath, I’m really *there*.  Then we return to downward-facing dog, and there are my thighs staring me smack in the face.  And I just couldn’t get past it.  Every vinyasa would return me to down dog, and every time I’d start feeling bad about myself.  90 entire minutes, and my mind never really quieted down.

I know I’m heavy, I know my legs are big.  So where did this self-loathing come from today?  Why this sudden fixation with what’s wrong, instead of what’s right with my body?  Why can’t I look  in the mirror today and see a person that’s kept over 60 pounds off their body for sixteen years?  Why can’t I focus on the fact that I’m doing something good for myself?

I think it probably welled up today because I saw something I normally keep hidden, even from myself.  And when you don’t see it, you can pretend it isn’t there.  I fear that, again, no matter how much weight I lose, I’ll remain this disproportioned weeble-wobble figure.  That’s something I’m going to need to come to terms with, I guess.  Is it possible to learn to love your body while you’re trying like hell to change it?  Do those two ideas HAVE to be at odds with one another?

August 19, 2009

wednesday weigh in

Filed under: 21 day challenge, weigh in — karena @ 7:47 am

Hang on, I’ve got to run over to the Sisterhood for a sec…. OK, I’m back!  I had to go and get this:

Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans

Because I have finally earned my 5# button. Remember, I got it once, but then gained a bit back, then my scale went crazy, and all hope of earning the button seemed out the window? Well, what do ya know? Working hard, watching your calories, and not saying “to heck with it” when you make one little mistake and throwing the whole day away… it all adds up.

I’m down to 163.0, which is down 1.5 pounds since last week’s weigh in. I’m pretty chuffed! This weekend I didn’t do as well as I’d hoped — a few too many glasses of wine, etc. But rather than blow the whole weekend as a result, I stayed on course. I still worked out. I watched my calories during the day, even though I knew I’d probably be indulging in the evening. And here I am, smiling.

My habit training is going quite well, I think, but in much more general terms than I had originally delineated. I’m getting a good night’s sleep, every night. And I’m working out, every day. (Every day except for one planned day off per week.) And I’m updating my blog, not daily, but regularly.

Sadly (??) I’m not going to be around for the start of the next challenge. We’re leaving for our vacation on the 28th and will be gone for two weeks. No internet connection, rarely even any cell phone coverage. Maybe one of my *big sisters* can slip me the deets a couple days ahead of time, so I can play along too?

*hint, hint, wink wink*

August 14, 2009

habits gone awry

Filed under: 21 day challenge, family, keeping it real — karena @ 8:00 am

Yes, I’m still here, and yes, I’m more or less on track with my habit-forming goals.  The only area I seem to be suffering in is keeping the blog updated.  It’s summer, I’m busy with the kids.  Also, I’m finding there just aren’t enough hours in the day to be Super Mom, a housekeeper, a chef, the librarian, the live-in nurse, get an hour and a half of exercise, stay on top of the billing, pack/plan for our upcoming vacation, etc.  But I will get back to the blog — I miss it, and that’s how I know it’s already a habit.

No time to find more excuses.  I’ve got to chauffeur my oldest to swim lessons…

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