Archive for the ‘countdown to a hotter 30’ Category

All I want for Christmas is a disease

Your body speaks to you. And if you listen very carefully it can tell you when something is wrong. It seems to be the most basic thing to know and be aware of, but sometimes we DON’T listen when we should. This year has been a very trying one for me. One of constant illness and I’ve written about it here along the way. It turns out that some of my problems are closely related to a diagnosis I just received last week.

My life-long friend has been telling me for a long time now to see her doctor. He is an endocrinologist and knows a heck of a lot about the thyroid. I have had bouts of tiredness, strange moods and just all around scatter-brain behavior. I jokingly chocked some of that up to undiagnosed adult ADD.  I just can’t seem to get my thoughts together sometimes and lose focus. With all of this combined along with crazy hormones and the fact that I haven’t dropped a pound after I hired a trainer a few months ago, I finally took my friend’s advice.

I have had my thyroid checked before so I thought nothing was wrong. However, my antibodies were never checked and it turns out that I have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. Hashimoto’s is an autoimmune disease which basically means the body attacks itself. My thyroid is pretty much not working properly which explains the weight issues and all of the hormonal changes.  The doctor is a Dutchman and isn’t a big fan of American practices. He asked all the questions none of my previous doctors have asked. He even tested my reflexes. And he felt around my neck and found that I have a goiter. None of these things were done before and he took the time….now I finally know why I’ve felt like crap.

I’ve started on Synthroid. It is supposed to get my thyroid in order. And through all of this my dear friend is giving me advice and sending links to stories I should read to further understand this whole thing. All this time she kept bugging me about it. If only I had listened sooner. So all I got for Christmas so far is a diagnosis, a disease and meds. But at least I know now before the new year begins. Hopefully it will be a better one. I plan to keep updating here to chronicle this thing…and maybe I can finally countdown OFFICIALLY to an even hotter 31.

Day 121: Countdown to a Hotter 30 (results show)

I started Oct. 1.

I wanted to kick start a new fitness/nutrition routine before the holidays and continue throughout the year. I called it Countdown to a Hotter 30. Well on Jan. 27 I turned 30. And though the countdown is over, I’m not done with my improvement. I think the below photo started my whirlwind of changing my habits: no more Sonic breakfasts, no more large ANYTHING, more homemade food, more working out. I’m not going to tell you where the scales tipped in this photo! Circa late summer 2007.

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It was taken at a friend’s birthday party. I remember what I ate. I think I knew even that day that I was feeling heavier than the year before. And I forwent the enchiladas though I think I had my share of margaritas and mojitos anyway.

I’ve spent over 100 days working at my goal of dropping some of my lard-ass and it was tough considering I started just before the crazy holidays. Boy that sucked. I hardly took home any leftovers at any function. In fact I threw out some things I took home from a Halloween party as to avoid temptation. I will say that if I had started my calorie counting on day one instead of just two months ago, my progress would have been better. So drum-roll please….

Total pounds lost: 8

All over inches lost: About 3

Big whoop, I know. And I’m STILL not tiny. And I probably never will be. Besides, I just want to be smaller and more importantly, keep my clean bill of health. Tiny and me aren’t really realistic unless you are talking about my voice, ankles and wrists! But most of my clothes are more and more loose by each month. Even though these aren’t exactly the results I wanted in nearly four months, I can definitely say they aren’t bad being that I started at a really dumb time — the time when everyone gains at least 10 pounds in turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie!

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Well there it is.  And obviously I’m not done. I’ve decided not to give myself another deadline, but rather keep up the work I’ve done. I don’t deprive myself. But I don’t overdo it anymore. Never really gave much thought to kid sizes at the drive-through — what a difference! And I’ve saved the “bad days” for Saturday only (with the exception of my birthday dinners this week!) But I told my family NO BIRTHDAY CAKE. 

I went kicking and screaming when my mother suggested counting calories. But it was the best thing she ever made me do. I’ve since decreased my intake from 2,000 calories a day to 1,500, which isn’t that different. At night I crave less and drink more water.

So here’s to just keeping healthy in 2008. And hopefully, sticking with a good enough outlook of myself so I won’t even want to go back to bad habits!  Stay with me though, I will update any continued progress here and there…

Tomorrow is when I turn 30…

And I blame this distractraction for the non-stellar writing panache lately. Tomorrow I shall update you on the last day of my countdown. It may be over but I won’t stop improving.

I have to say, of all the birthdays in my life, this was one for the books. The one that I didn’t plan a damn thing and didn’t bother to remind people of the date. I just mourned. The calls have come in. “What are you doing for your birthday?” I just said, “Nothing.” There will be dinner plans but there you have it. No revelry. Just a whimper.

 I’m not really sure why I’m dreading this number. It is afterall, as many of you have pointed out, just a number. But I guess as a child and through my teens, I saw 30 as that marker of your successes, how far you have come and how far you may be going…

I definitely can say I’ve come a long way. But a not-so-shy 16-year-old unrealistically put everything into a time capsule for this age: being more traveled, finishing my first novel (*insert your own laugh track here*), getting married… She must still be in here, somewhere. I think she’s hiding from embarrassment! Or just reality…

I don’t know why we impose so much on such a seemingly meaningless number. Last year I celebrated the “death” of my 20s like it was my last hurrah…At 29 I didn’t give any thought to the 30 celebration because I just didn’t see what the celebration was about.

“Ugh. 30,”  I said and am still saying. But really I should just be happy to be alive…That’s what they tell you. “Be happy to be alive.” I am. Life is good. But they just don’t tell you how to stop dreading this kind of milestone. What will 40 feel like?

On a possibly unrelated topic, the other night I dreamt of riding horses with Amy Winehouse of all people. It wasn’t pretty like galloping. It was hard riding. Very fast. And angry. The horses were huge and majestic. I’ve probably lost it…Anyway, this could have so many odd meanings. Would anyone like to take a stab at it?

Did I mention I’ve had drinks?

Random alert: January isn’t over, but still…

Resolutions are pretty much ruined in the first week. But I’ve got to say, I’ve been sticking to my resolutions  pretty well. Especially the one about yelling. I yell so much less which shocks my family. I pretty much yell at life. I don’t mean to yell at the person. Just my situation I’m not thrilled with. Or about something that went crabby that day…I catch myself now. And stop before the beast can be unleashed…

I’ve stuck closely to the resolution about putting myself out there. And all the calorie counting. I’ve dropped another pound in fact. Something else worth noting: I’m feeling like 2008 is going to be pretty damn good. I’ve signed up for a lot of stuff this month to keep me occupied and meeting new people. Each month I will force myself to go to at least four events not connected to my job or random bar hopping without a purpose — meaning if I’m going to a bar, there better be a game on!! Or some speed-dating which I will be experimenting with on Jan. 23…There will be video. Stick around.

In other stuff, last night I went to an opera event with this lady I met in an art group I’m a member of. They are all older than me, but I leave a little wiser each time I attend their meetings. Well this lady is about 74 but she’s really cool. She invited me to this French singing performance as her guest and she introduced me to some folks. She also said she would try to get me in touch with people who can help me promote my work. Who knows. Maybe I’ll get out of Texas one day afterall. You never know. Anyway, even though there was an age gap (she kept telling stories which started with “You are probably too young to remember this” and that), I felt that I needed to go to the event just to kick off a long line of things I plan to attend in the future so I can put myself out there — something I need to do more of to see what else ticks in this world other than all I’ve known in the last 29 years. It’s just about the best fresh start I need.

Day 99: I’ve posted this elsewhere…

My singles blog in fact. But it still should count for my countdown. Update on that by the way: I’ve got on size 16 jeans that I shrank once upon a time when I felt ambitious (yes, I will confess to size 16) and I’ve got at least two inches of room hanging out not to mention extra material in the tush and thighs. Pounds are still the same. Haven’t lost more than five but I noticed today, while sitting in my panties in front of the computer (tee hee) that I didn’t have protrusions coming out of my sides! Yes…

Yesterday [Saturday] a friend from work and I went to the lake by my apartment and walked. I took along my camera as I always do when I walk the lake. Usually alone. My friend had recently discovered the lake and fell in love with the area. She’s not really from here and I guess one day she just went driving, got out and walked…

Anyway this trek of ours wasn’t supposed to be that long. We both decided that before she came to my apartment. As we walked, we yapped about work of course. Where we wanted to be next year. And I snapped a lot of pics. Before we knew it I guess it may have been about 45 minutes and we looked around. I asked her if she wanted to turn back but by the look of her face and my frowned brow we both decided we were too curious and walked some more. However, we were headed nowhere near my apartment.
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Day 90: I still have a month to go…

December 27, 2007OK. Yes I know this is not a complete full photo…again. I don’t have a full-length mirror in my home if you can believe that. And I always forget to tell people to take a full photo of me when I’m out or at work. But I will make sure to get “the” final shot done by someone. A full one. I do have one though, in pajamas. And let’s just say I would never share it here! I think that once I’m done with this on the last day of the countdown which is my birthday — January 27 — I will recruit a work friend to do it. The office already knows what I’m up to. And they know how to properly use my camera.

But one thing you should know about his photo. I’m notorious for turning my head to make my face look smaller. In this photo I am shooting dead one — no super-cool camera angles, shooting above or photo-shopping. This is me. And my new glasses. Well, and funky hair. On average I hate taking a photo dead on.

So far I’ve lost five pounds. My arms have a little more definition. My mother said my bum looked smaller. Trust me. She doesn’t give those observations lightly! And I can’t be sure but I think I’ve lost at least two inches. All I know is that all my jeans fit a tad more loose which I’m guesstimating it’s about two inches more room. I feel so dumb but I didn’t take my measurements prior to starting this. But over the holiday my mother did and notated where I’m at now so by the end of January we’ll have some kind of accurate gage.

Another thing that doesn’t quite set right with me yet is that it’s been nearly 100 days and this isn’t 10 pounds lost! But I guess that’s not bad considering I started this in the triple threat holiday season and I didn’t gain a pound during all the temptation. Got to pat my back for something I guess…

Day 72: Wipe down your equipment

wipe-down-your-equipment.jpgI’ve started counting calories…reluctantly.

The working out has been steady but I’ve been under the delusion that I’ve been eating the right portions of everything. Wrong. Of course wrong! I’ve been counting calories for a little more than a week and have already lost enough inches for the owner of this cafe across the street from my job to ask, “Have you lost weight?”

I didn’t just jump on this calorie thing. I did it kicking and screaming until my mother bought and gave me several books to help me along. And some notebooks to keep track. I’m staying at no more than 2,000 calories and I’ve done quite well. It doesn’t even annoy me that much anymore and I’ve lost a few of my hard and fast cravings: burgers, pizza…Sonic slushes. Wait. Now that I’ve typed that I need to find the calorie count for one because a slush suddenly sounds good…

Anyway, my mother has noted my progress. She is concerned for me because I’ve been so concerned. Because of medication and a thyroid disorder, she has trouble with her weight. In fact she is very good at managing food intake and now I’m in training. I’m only a pound away from dropping under the dreaded weight I am now which, no matter how disclosing I am here, I will never share. At least not until I am well below it.

Because of overdoing the reception on Saturday and dancing all night, I haven’t hit the gym. I am only just now nearly 100 percent from having all that nausea. I don’t think a hangover lasts that long and I’m now convinced I got food poisoning from the all of six bites of Chinese food I had that night after the club. Or maybe it’s because I haven’t been doing that kind of food and my body went into shock. Don’t know.

The last time I went to the gym my favorite treadmill was covered in snot and spit. No lie! It was like someone was so determined to finish their miles that they didn’t care they had an upper-respiratory infection or other funky health issue in the process. It was so sick I almost didn’t work out. But instead I grabbed on to the very dry elliptical machine and tried not to heave. I don’t know why I shared that except to give warning to all of you who work out and like to grab onto those heart-rate bars like I do. Never again.

Day 63: The power of a note on the door…

Be gone all you thiefs!I woke up to discover this morning that my tiny Christmas tree equipped with tiny, shiny, glittery little ornaments was swiped from my front porch. I know that it may not have been the best thing — to actually leave something I gave a rip about on the front porch. But combined with the gold bells on my door, the bow I made latched on to the door knocker — everything felt so nice when I came home. Because from inside and out my house was so very pleasantly festive with Christmas cheer. Well, my Christmas cheer faded with my little discovery.

I became enraged. I left a polite note on my neighbor’s door about it after looking around the complex (and glancing the trash) to see if I would find it somewhere. I sat in my house, numb with anger of course. I’ve been robbed several times in my life. Mostly related to my car. This was it. So I kept checking the peep hole every now and then just to see if I saw someone to ask questions. Then I noticed this one young looking guy coming down from upstairs who looked quite guilty when he stopped at my neighbor’s door to read my note which read:

“If you happen to know who stole my tree, please let me know. It wasn’t very nice. Signed (my apartment number).”

Then after he read it, he looked down directly where my Christmas tree WOULD have been. When I saw his face I decided to draft another letter and this time put it on MY door. This one read:

“Merry Christmas Asshole. Whoever stole my fucking Christmas tree doesn’t know who they are fucking with. You will get yours — one way or another. Signed (my apartment number).”

I fumed. Ran errands and came home. Then I heard some really loud walking and looked out the peephole. I saw my “friendly” upstairs neighbor going downstairs. I decided to wait for her to head back up. She would have to pass my door to get to her apartment. I waited because the connection was made. She was surely friends with the guy from earlier in the afternoon. Before I could completely ask her if she had heard anything funny last night she confessed that her friend stole my tree. She said he was “intoxicated” and that she was sorry and was bringing back the tree. Guess what she said next?

“I didn’t appreciate that note. It wasn’t very Christmas-like…”

THE BALLS ON THIS CHICK! I told her I didn’t give a damn, she stole from me and that I’ve been through a lot in my life. And that I didn’t appreciate HER stealing from me. She proceeded to say it wasn’t her. It was her friend. Same damn thing. Long story longer, she brought it back and said that she didn’t want it to affect things with her and I. Hilarious. My punctuation mark was letting her know I’ve been victimized in my life and that stealing from me was wrong. She felt like shit. Her face was if she may have concluded I was once upon a time kidnapped and left for dead.

What does this have to do with the countdown? Nothing. An hour walking in a parade carrying a giant Curious George yesterday and ending my day getting back stolen property counts as a workout for me.

FIN.

Day 53: The moment of truth

5e2ad5283e968e3d32e7ff342cac848c.jpgHappy Gobble Gobble Day everyone.

I hope you have stayed thankful today. I have. I’m thankful I worked my brains out for over a week to get to this day and not be as worried about the food. I’m sitting here at the family’s house now, just pondering all that dressing. That’s the best part. Mom’s dressing. And I’m sore as hell all over from overdoing the routine so I can avoid the guilt of stuffing my face — so to speak.

I brought a little something too. Sweet Potato Thangs. Out here the lady who makes them also made a life-sized bride cake. We did a story on her and her family, both are absolutely delightful. And so are these “thangs,” which by the way I’m about to gobble on as soon as I’m done here. Come Day 54, trust and believe I’ll be hitting the gym before other day-off festivities begin. Namely the birthday celebration I’m concocting for one of my friends which can only mean more calories — only this time calories brought on by martinis.

I hope you are all having a pleasant day of merriment and that you won’t overdo it like I plan hope not to do.

Day 50: Perfectly healthy fatty

exercise-magnet-c11754656.jpgI got the results of my physical today. I will admit that I kind of wanted the doctor to tell me I had a slow thyroid or something. Not because I get off on the idea of being sick. And I know thyroid disorders are no walk in the park. My mother has a very poor thyroid and because she has other ailments, all of the pills she takes keep her pretty much severely overweight. I try every day to avoid such a fate. The only reason I wanted to have something wrong was because I would be able to hang my hat on that as a reason I am thick gal. And not just genetics. I was ready for the doctor to tell me there was a problem, get on the meds to “fix” it, combine it all with my eating and fitness habits and just watch the pounds drop like the bad baggage I never wanted — like this girl a work’s friend did. I know that’s silly. Why would I wish for an illness anyway? Really stupid.

Well turns out I have a completely clean bill of health. Cholesterol, blood sugar, thyroid, blood pressure — every damn thing under the sun checks out to be good. Better than good. Pretty much perfect. I should be elated. I am I guess. But as you know I’m kind of impatient and I’m really trying to achieve a better body. I’ve even started walking to the store which is what I did on Day 48. I walked to the store and then went to the gym to work out for another 45 minutes. Today I walked to the doctor and worked out for another hour.

My doctor prescribed an appetite suppressant for me and did so kind of reluctantly. She said I was a pretty girl, healthy and young. She told me it wasn’t too late to get on the right path. She kind of felt like I was too hard on myself. I think she is right. But I have to be hard on myself because it’s pushing me to do this — and finally the right way and make it stick. However I should lay off a bit. There are plenty of people in the world just waiting to give me a hard time without me doing it. And giving me bad advice. Case in point: The Central Market “nutrition” lady. She was the chick who told me to get on coconut oil. My doctor is from India (I think!) and said that a particular region in India that uses a lot of coconut oil in their cooking have cholesterol and heart problems! She said coconut oil is full of saturated fat — the kind that clogs your arteries and told me to stop taking it. Now how’s that for a close one? I’ve been taking those damn pills for more than two weeks!!!

I’m keeping my spirits up though. Many of you have been very encouraging as well. But let me tell you a quick story. Or more like set up a scenario for you: Say you are walking to lunch behind several coworkers quite smaller than you and without really meaning to, you start staring at the fact that freakishly none of them have thighs that touch a single moment while walking. Shit. What does that feel like?