26 January 2015

four years down, a lifetime to go

This is that one post I'm never really sure how to write. Last year I addressed the 47 pound elephant in the room and this year I could address the now 60 pound elephant in the room but I'm not going to take that route. While it's true that, yes, I did gain 13 pounds over the course of the past 12 months, the real fact of the matter is that I'll always be a work in progress and there is always the reality that I may be a higher weight year to year.

What should be noted, however, is that I no longer weigh 311 pounds, which was my starting weight when I first signed up for Weight Watchers on January 24, 2011.

Instead, I still weigh roughly 235, which is what I weighed back in June at FitBloggin. That was a weight that left me feeling confident and happy. A weight I felt I could maintain. A weight that was the result of my lifestyle. True, I did gain back another 10 or so which is why I returned to Weight Watchers back in October, I've lost that weight and essentially have maintained that weight for almost nine months. I always use late June as my reference, but I went back into my MyFitnessPal account and saw this weight actually started back in early May 2014.

That, ladies & gents, is unheard of for me. I'm either losing or I'm gaining. I am not maintaining. Except, y'know, apparently I am.

Aside from the weight loss, there is so much that I've accomplished in the past four years. Like completing not one but two half-marathons. Like now being an Ambassador for the 2015 Cleveland Marathon, which means this year I'll be completing my third half in May. Like becoming a certified indoor spinning instructor.

So often, those of us with weight issue think only in terms of losing or gaining. We are celebrated if we lose, we are chastised if we gain. In fact, that's why it's so hard to come forward and admit that we have gained. What's rarely acknowledged are those that lost the weight and kept it off. Ask anyone who has lost any significant weight at all and kept it off for several years and they'll confirm that people sort of stop paying attention, stop caring, when they are no longer a "weight loss success story." That is, when they are no longer actively losing or recently hit goal. Maintaining that weight loss is far, far harder than losing it to begin with and I am in awe of people who have kept that weight off for any length of time, let alone 5 or 10 or more years. They are the ones we should be celebrating.

So! For my four year healthy living anniversery, I'm not goint to lament the fact that I'm 60 lbs above my lowest. Instead of focusing on where I am not, I'm gong to focus on where I am. And for me that means maintaing a 75 lb weight loss for nearly a year.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

23 January 2015

skipping the scale

Today I purposely skipped my Weight Watchers meeting because I knew I'd show a gain.

Trust me, I've been doing this long enough (four years as of tomorrow, but that's for an upcoming post) so I know how that looks. Y'know, the whole avoiding the scale because it'll be up blah blah blah.

So I knew I was going to most likely show a gain because I had what I call a Normal Person Week. That is, it's not that I binge eat or go off the rails or stuff my face full of whatever I just, y'know, eat like a normal person. I still had my planned meals and ate my fruits and veggies and drank my water. I just splurged more often than usual I suppose. But even then, when I had my bowl of ice cream I measured it out on my scale. I just, y'know, had that same bowl of ice cream after work every night this week. When going out to eat I was perhaps a little more flexible in what I ate and how much I drank but I still tracked everything, which is how I know I went over my weeklies.

This, inevitably, leads to a small gain and while I was totally prepared for that I just didn't want to deal with the "Oh, that's okay. You can get back on track this week" comments. I know they mean well and come from a good place and of course most people are at WW wanting to lose weight and so gains are disappointing, but right now, today, at this very moment, if someone were to tell me that it's okay I gained a bit, my response would be

No, no, trust me. I know it's okay. I used to weigh over 300 lbs. I don't anymore. In fact, I've managed to maintain a 75 weight loss for a little over seven months now. That is unheard of for me as I usually am losing or I am gaining. So going up just a bit is sooooooo not a big deal.

In other words, I'm apparently still in losing limbo. I know that ultimately I'd like to get back down to the 200ish range but ultimately doesn't need to mean, y'know, tomorrow. And even if I never do, I can still be proud of the fact that I've lost 75 and so far kept it off.

So. That's why I skipped my meeting.

In other news: Voting is still open for FitBloggin '15 Sparks! I have a Spark in there and I would so love to be able to present it to the fabulous FitBloggin community but even if I can't, then my awesome friends should be able to as well, so be sure to go vote! Also, next week I'll be running the @InTheCLE Twitter account! Y'all know how much I lurve this city so I'm super excited to have been chosen to represent the city and the account. Even if you're not from Northeast Ohio you should still totally follow it.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

17 January 2015

rock the fitbloggin vote


I can't believe it's already time to start thinking and planning for FitBloggin' 15! I mean, y'know, it's still five months away but still. There's, like, hotel and plane tickets and all that jazz to figure out. Plus, BC is coming with me this year! Coincidentally, a good friend of his (that I actually graduated from high school with) is going to be in Denver the same weekend so that makes me feel way better about leaving BC to fend for himself -- so to speak -- while I'm out conferencing all day.

This year I'm hoping to actually speak at the Keynote Event by presenting an Ignite Fitness presentation. Speakers are chosen via a voting process and it's blind voting so it's not a popularity contest (although, to be honest, if you've read this blog long enough and/or know anything about me it's really not that difficult to figure out which one is mine) so I won't tell you which one to pick, just know that I have one and so do some of my fabulous FitBloggin friends.

Luckily you don't have to pick just one, you can vote for as many that sound appealing so be sure to vote!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

14 January 2015

cooking up a weight watchers storm

I've been on this huge popcorn kick lately. I think it actually started over Christmas break when I found myself with lots of time off and was indulging in some Netflix binging. I also spent most of the holidays doing Simply Filling and took full advantage of my air popper since making plain popcorn with it makes it a Power Food! (I also realized I can make popcorn on the stove top and still have it count for SF as long as I cook it in 1-2 t. of olive oil.)


One of my Christmas gifts was a Crate & Barrel gift card and I used it to buy some fancy tri-colored popcorn kernals. (I also used it to buy a cookie press. All about balance, amirite? LOLOL)

Right, so, I was super pumped when the latest issue of Weight Watchers magazine arrived and included a whole page of homemade seasonings to make to put on top of popcorn!

I made the #5, Pumpkin Pie and it was soooooo goooood on top of my popcorn. I really want to try the Chocolate-Coconut and Parmesan-Ranch next. We have this amazing popcorn store here in Cleveland that makes some killer combos (the cheese & carmel and beer cheddar are my faves) and these flavors remind me a lot of them but in a way that lets me get my fix without being super high in calorie.

My Friday Weight Watchers meeting is over at 10 and I've gotten into the routine of going grocery shopping after and every once in awhile there will be a recipe in the weekly that will find its way onto my shopping list. Such was the case this past week with the Baked Ziti.

I threw some lean ground turkey in which added 2 points but it's super yummy and you get a decent amount of food for the portions. I'm definitely set for dinner for the week and have no doubt this will be added into my meal rotation.

Last Friday I was down 1.8, bringing my total to 11.8! I'm a mere .2 pounds away from hitting my 5% goal which hopefully will happen this week!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

12 January 2015

we run this city

I know I had made a brief mention of this awhile back, but with training just around the corner and an official blogger badge over in my sidebar I am super excited to announce I'll be an Ambassador for the 2015 Cleveland Marathon weekend!

At the beginning of the year I made a commitment to running one race a month and the Cleveland Half will be my June race and I love that I'll be running it as an ambassador for this particular event. I did the 10K in 2013 and the half in 2014 and making the 2015 half my third half marathon is just the icing on the race cake.

Plus, I got my last tattoo after my last half, so getting to run this race in this city with this ink just makes my heart so happy.

I'm also so happy to be running with the other Ambassadors, who will all be running different races over the course of the weekend. There's also plenty of time to register if you want to run with us!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

07 January 2015

new start to the new year

Monday I returned to work after being off since Christmas Eve and walking into the break room at lunch time stepped into a conversation between two co-workers who were talking about how they are determined to get back on track this week. One had already started her, like, juicing cleanse detox...thing and the other mentioned that because she knew her diet was coming, she completely gorged herself this past weekend.

This made me thankful that 1) I got myself back on track last week and 2) so grateful for Weight Watchers, which allows the balance I need to be successful without drinking my meals or complete balls-to-the-wall restriction.

I was, admittedly, up and down all holiday season. I was on some weeks and off others. But I kept going and never missed a single weigh in (I did skip the actual meeting on the 26th, I had too many post-Christmas errands to run). But after three months, I'm finding I really like the accountability that comes with the meetings. I'd never been much of a meeting gal in the past -- it's why I did it online when I started at 311 way back in January 2011 (which means my four year healthy living anniversary is coming up!) It would seem, though, this is a know your crowd kind of thing because I have a great group of women in my weekly meeting and our leader is just awesomesauce.

Along with getting back and now staying on track (even if it continues to mean not gaining) I'm hoping to get back on track with my blogging. I've been a little absent from the social media world these past few months, mostly owing to spending all my time working on a book. That pretty much took up whatever writing and creative space I had. But, my rough draft was due to my editor today and all final book materials due in exactly two weeks (eek!).

Of course, being the planner that I am, I should have everything turned in early and over the past few weeks it hasn't sucked up nearly as much time as it did over the fall. I'm hoping that once I can officially check mark it all off my To Do List, I'll be able to reprioritize this lil corner of mine in the big bad websphere. I miss writing here and hopefully you've missed reading it!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

03 January 2015

committing to 2015

I started the new year by participating in the Commitment Day 5K out in Beachwood, Ohio. It was sort of a last minute decision -- I think I registered on the 30th or something. See, my FitBloggin friend Nathan had posted something last week about doing one race a month and I know my college roommate Megan did that in 2014 and all of a sudden I thought that sounded like THE BEST IDEA EVER. So while looking for Cleveland area January races I saw Commitment Day on the 1st and decided to sign up.

The race itself was pretty low-key. As in fun run, so untimed, at least at this location. I got the sense this was a new race for this spot so they weren't sure what to anticipate in terms of participation. But the cool thing is that it's a race run all over the country so it was fun knowing I had friends running the same race.

When I got home I, of course, had to work on my scrapbook page and even put a list of the races I'll be running to stay on track with that commitment!

It will get updated as I register for races, as will the little section on my sidebar with my race calendar.

That was Thursday and on Friday I wore the race t-shirt to my Weight Watchers meeting. When my leader asked about it I explained I ran a 5K on January 1st and made a commitment to run one race per month for the entire year. Then, during the meeting, she gave me a little running man charm for my bling ring!

Isn't he just so cute?

After being up and down all holiday season, I lost 2.8 pounds last week, bringing my total to 10. I'm at my pre-Thanksgiving weight, which is awesome, but also brings me back to that whole What Do I Do Now place.

Last night I had dinner with a high-school friend and we actually had a long conversation about all of this and I told her it took me a long time to accept that no matter what I do, what direction I choose to go, it's going to be something I'm going to be doing for the rest of my life. So I don't really need to make a decision to lose all this weight at this very moment in time. I don't even have to make that decision this year. All I really have to do is focus on not gaining, which is way harder than people imagine. So I think I'll just continue to take it one day, one week at a time and not make any big goals for the time being. As long as the scale isn't moving up, I'll be okay.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus
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