UNC vs. Me…A Similar Conundrum

First off…I hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving holiday!

Now to the good stuff…

If you know anything about me, you know I’m a die-hard UNC Tarheels fan. Much to the dismay of my dad and many of my other (crazy Blue Devil) friends, I bleed Carolina Blue.

download (2)

Football has been hit or miss over the years, (I once owned a shirt that said “UNC: A drinking school with a football problem.”) but basketball on the other hand…that’s where it’s at for me. (Wow…what a grammatical nightmare that sentence was!)

So in true frustrate the hell out of an avid sports fan form, my sweet team has been slightly irritating this year.  When they’re playing an unranked, no player over 6 feet tall, should be able to beat them with the UNC walk-ons blindfolded and tied to each other type of teams…we lose. When we’re playing the protégé, definitely going to be in the Final Four, top 3, ridiculous skill type of teams…we win.

When it is absolutely and logically impossible for us to walk away with a defeat…it happens. When it is absolutely and logically impossible for us to lose…we can’t make a damn shot and sport a big ‘L’ on the forehead on the bus home.

So what does this have to do with me or my weight loss?

Well…the week that it is absolutely and logically impossible for me to lose an ounce of weight…

IMG_1481

 

And I do!

This marks the 3rd year in a row that I’ve lost weight during Thanksgiving week.

Trust me…I’m not complaining. It just makes absolutely NO sense.

I stuffed my face last week…and when I say stuff my face, I mean I ate everything in sight…turkey, figgy piggy (Thanks Sarah!), gravy, stuffing, green bean casserole, roasted veggies, mashed potatoes, creamed corn, sweet potatoes, quinoa and butternut squash casserole, broccoli and cauliflower, hashbrown casserole, curried onions, swiss chard, sausage balls, cake balls (it was year of the balls apparently), pumpkin pie, a thousand batches of gingersnaps, gummy worms (I’m sure I’m forgetting a few things)…and all of that was just on Thanksgiving day! (And yes, everything I ate was gluten free.)

I wanted to care what I was eating that day…but decided not to fret and that I’d catch up later in the week. After all…how often do you get to enjoy beaucoups of homemade deliciousness with your family?!

My catch-up never happened and I didn’t exactly eat well this week either…traveling plus hotel plus no scale to gauge my progress (or regress) leaves me in a world of confusion, French fries and chocolate.

This pattern of thinking it’s one way and it’s actually another is not new to me. There are often days or weeks that I feel incredible…I feel thinner, I feel flatter and more defined. Those are the times I get on the scale only to see that I’ve gone up. I know I should base the way I feel about myself on the way I truly feel (vs. on what a digital number is yelling at me), but that’s tough for me. My weight loss has more or less defined me mentally for the last 2 years. My panic over waking up to have it all packed back on leads me to get slightly obsessed about the daily ups and downs. Being so close to a major weight loss milestone only makes things worse.

Hopefully some of this stress and worry of overnight failure will subside a bit once I reach that 100-pound mark. For some (screwed up) reason…99 pounds is not an accomplishment but 100 is. If I can make it to that mark, I will have done something that I had convinced myself for 15 years of struggle with my weight that I could never ever do. Then again…I never truly believed I could make it to a 94.4-pound weight loss mark either!

So this week, even though I lost a decent amount of weight, I feel horrible. I feel like I didn’t lose or that it’s just some sick game that the scale is playing. I should have been ecstatic when I stepped on the scale this morning but I wasn’t. It might of well have shown a 2 pound gain. It never occurred to me until now that perhaps my body is finally rejecting all this crappy, processed stuff. All I can think about right now is diving into a big bowl of kale salad (no lie) and a year ago all I could think about was fried potatoes. (I clearly have a thing for french fries…I think I’ve mentioned them in almost every blog.) I don’t want to eat bad anymore which I know is a step in the right direction.

Nevertheless, the mind-boggling weight loss for the week means one of two things…

1)   The more calories I ingest the more weight I lose. In other words, if I spend the next 2 weeks eating nachos and sausage then I’ll be less than 150 pounds in no time!

2)   That the weight is waiting in the wings to pack on this week so I need to be extra careful.

Yeah…I’m thinking it’s not likely to be option number 1…unfortunately. 🙂

I have no scientific knowledge of how calories really work and how long excess calories ‘stick around’…all I have in my brain is the basic premise that if you burn more calories than you take in, you will lose. I seem to have defied all the laws of nutrition last week, which leaves me a little panicked about this week.

Does the poundage wait until you least expect it to totally depress you when you get on the scale? How is it humanly possible to lose when I ate as much as I did? Do cheat weeks lead to a faster metabolism (I’ve read that a cheat day is in fact beneficial to metabolism) to this degree? Does it catch back up with you eventually?

I honestly don’t know….

But here’s what I do know…

I am thankful for an incredible Thanksgiving weekend.

I am thankful for the food on my plate and the roof over my head.

I am thankful for my family and the bond that we share.

I am thankful for weight loss.

I am thankful for the way my body has transformed.

I am thankful for smaller sizes and larger confidence.

I am thankful for good health and a clear mind.

I am thankful for this blog.

And of course, I am thankful that the Heels defeated Louisville and Michigan State.

“If the odds are a million to one against something occurring, chances are 50-50 it will.”

Advertisements

I Ain’t Missin’ You At All

We have hit another milestone….

80 pounds!!! E-I-G-H-T-Y!!!!! (Well…80.2 actually.)

80 pounds of excess…fat…sadness. Gone.

And in honor of the title of this week, here’s a little background music for the rest of this post:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

I’ve had a lot of people ask me in the last few weeks what I miss about my former non-diet conscious life. My response has simply been, “Nothing.” There is no food that I miss. There is no habit I wish I could revisit again. There is no part of my prior self that I would prefer over the new and improved current version.

This photo was taken the day after I started this blog.

I don’t miss feeling out of control every time I ate. Was this snack of 18 chips going to turn into an uncontrollable binge on 2 bags of Lays, a batch of cookies and a liter of Coke?

I don’t miss the feeling of self-hatred after I had eaten far more than I should have.

15 pounds lighter...

I don’t miss that feeling that food was my only true friend and the kindest, most supportive part of my life.

I don’t miss the way my jeans dug into my stomach leaving an indentation that would last hours on end, because I refused to accept the fact that I might need to buy a size 22.

Losing...slowly.

I don’t miss the popcorn and M&M’s that helped me to not feel so lonely. I begged and begged for them to fill the void but they never did.

I don’t miss wondering if invisibility would be more comfortable. No one could see how badly I’d let myself go if they couldn’t see me at all.

I don’t miss the way my legs chafed when I wore shorts.

30 pounds lighter.

I don’t miss watching other people laugh and dance and have a good time, wishing with all my might that I could be that free.

I don’t miss the staring and the ridicule.

I don’t miss the breakup of my stomach and my brain. Once they stopped speaking to each other I didn’t know when to stop eating.

35 pounds gone.

I don’t miss wondering if anyone would ever really love me for the person that I am, or if all they’d ever see is my muffin top.

I don’t miss worrying whether or not I was going to fit in the booth at a restaurant if the table was one of those that was super-glued to the wall.

I don’t miss the feeling of regret when I ran into someone I knew from high school and wondering if they were saying to themselves when I walked away, “Wow, she sure let herself go.”

50 pounds gone.

I don’t miss feeling like I could not succeed at anything.

I don’t miss crying in the morning when I had tried on everything in my closet and nothing fit correctly.

I don’t miss feeling like a failure to my family.

70 pounds gone.

I don’t miss having a belly that stuck out further than my boobs.

I don’t miss the pain in my knees every day because of the extra ‘me’ I was carrying around.

I don’t miss the fear that a photo of me was going to be tagged on Facebook.

I don’t miss the feeling that no one would ever want you unless you were a size 2.

75 pounds can kiss my ass...

I don’t miss the rejection.

I don’t miss the shame.

I don’t miss hating myself.

I don’t miss waiting.

And waiting…

And waiting…

Waiting for my life to begin.

Waiting for my time to start.

Waiting for my true self.

But she had been there all along.

I found her there waiting off to the side…waiting for me to let her in.

And unlike all the other things that I don’t miss, I had truly missed her.

But she is here to stay…

The new and improved version!

“There is no right path. Only the one that lets you sleep soundly and wake up excited.” 

~ Jennifer Louden

You Might Be Gluten-Free If…..

Jeff Foxworthy did his redneck style. I do mine GF-style. Minds out of the gutter people!

I’m in a cheesy mood tonight…Not that it has anything to do with the amazing queso fresco I just ingested – but in a dorky, witty, joking mood. Perhaps it’s because it’s Monday…perhaps it’s because the new job has me a little frazzled, but regardless, you’re the lucky one that gets to enjoy light-heartedness this evening…

So without further ado ….You Might Be Gluten-Free If….

…your bar tab went up exponentially when you had to stop drinking beer and start drinking liquor.

…you keep at least 5 kinds of flour in the house and none of them start with ‘W’.

…you can’t eat at a buffet.

…the smell of freshly baked pizza makes you on the verge of postal.

…Five Guys sees you coming and instantly changes their gloves.

…you get stomach cramps walking through the bread aisle.

…you question your ‘Southern card’ since you can’t remember what fried chicken tastes like.

…you’ve ever deliberately slammed your shopping cart into the Wheat Thins display in a fit of rage.

…you spend more time reading ingredients than actually eating the food.

…your happiest moment this year was discovering GF bagels at the grocery store.

…someone could rob you with just a club sandwich and Doritos.

…you’ll hug people with a nasty cough but keep someone eating a cookie at an arm’s length or farther.

…you’re considering converting to the Aztec religion, so people will accept your corn-worshipping ways.

…you pack your own toaster to go on vacations.

…you have written “CONTAMINATED” on containers of cream cheese.

…you’ve considered strangling friends/relatives who say “It can’t hurt if you only eat a little, can it?”

…you can find hidden gluten on food labels in the blink of an eye and some people around you couldn’t find it if they had a magnifying glass, a dictionary and a Ph.D.

…you burn your toast and eat it anyway because those two tiny pieces of bread cost $1.50.

…during the holidays, visions of guar gum dance in your head.

…you are afraid of spices and in restaurants, ask for your food “naked.”

…people think you’re on a low-carb diet.

…you’ve ever asked for a bunless burger and been looked at like you have 3 heads.

…you kiss your date before dinner instead of after.

…you write a GF blog!

…you’re feeling better than you EVER have in your life and still losing weight! Go me!!!

 

 

Still chipping away at the pudge. And I do not miss it at all!!

I’m going to work on updating my ‘Goals’ page sometime this week – but wanted to let you know the two new ones that I have set for myself in the meantime.

1)      To lose an additional 50 lbs by my sister’s wedding. Wedding is May 19, 2012…that amounts to about 10 lbs a month. Completely attainable goal – although I’m a little off this week – my next goal should help me get there with more certainty…

2)      To start working out. The scary thing is that I really am itching to get active. I’m imagining myself doing physical things and yearning to get a good aerobic sweat in. I’ve never wanted to sweat before so I’m a little shocked that I feel guilty about not doing anything at this point.

Now that eating better is second nature, I can focus on my other arch nemesis: moving my behind. I certainly need to work on toning and firming up. Nothing sexy about excess jiggle. And there will certainly not be anything sexy about loose skin if I manage to lose (I’m sorry…WHEN I LOSE) 100 pounds. I commit to you, loyal followers, that by the time I post a blog next week, I will have started my workout regimen.

 

Before I sign off this week – I want to mention something I mentioned last week…There’s only one day left and the way it stood a few days ago, it will take an absolute miracle (or divine intervention) for me to come out on top…but I need votes! Please go to http://jovialfoods.com/blog/7362654553-2/ and vote for #13 (If mine is your favorite) and help send me on the GF/culinary trip of a lifetime. (See last week’s post for more details.)

I really appreciate all of you that have voted for me thus far and helped to spread the word. Voting ends tomorrow (12/20) at midnight and results will be announced on the 22nd. Keep your fingers crossed that the next time you hear from me, I’ll have to add renewing my passport to my to-do list! What an amazing Christmas present that would be!

 

I hope that each of you has a Merry Christmas…may Santa bring you everything you’ve asked for and more!

“Faith is believing that the outcome will be what it should be, no matter what it is.”  ~Colette Baron-Reid

Six Months

Six months ago I was a different person…

Six months ago, every single thing I ate sat like a lead balloon in my gullet.

Six months ago, everything I ate also was subsequently returned in violent fashion to the porcelain throne.

Six months ago, eating resulted in such ungodly pain in my side that I’m now convinced I know what the pain of an AK-47 shot to the flank feels like.

Six months ago, even eating one bite led to such extreme stomach distention, you’d think I was mocking Violet from Willy Wonka without the delicious grape color.

Six months ago, the pain in my joints was so severe I was only able to function on a daily basis with a fabulous cocktail of muscle relaxers and painkillers.

Six months ago, my skin was so blotchy and itchy I was starting to believe that I was allergic to fresh air.

Six months ago, my skin was so dry that soaking in a tub for an hour barely moisturized the top layer.

Six months ago, I was so irritable I didn’t even want to be around myself.

Six months ago, I had yet another person tell me they couldn’t find anything wrong with me and after 11 years of issues, it must absolutely be in my head.

Six months ago, I was at the end of my rope.

Six months ago, I met the doctor that changed my life.

Six months ago I was introduced to Celiac Disease…

Happy 6-Month Anniversary to my diagnosis!  Never thought hearing my doctor say, “You have an autoimmune disease” would turn out to be such a blessing.

I never imagined feeling this amazing. I never imagined feeling this healthy or this complete. I never imagined waking up each and every day and having no fear that eating breakfast was going to leave me doubled over in pain for hours.  I never imagined a life free of bloat and tummy troubles.

And I most certainly never imagined being out of the 200’s…so, so close!

 

Thinking back six months – I certainly never expected to still be moving in the right direction with my weight loss or my overall physical and mental transformation.  Six months ago I expected to fail as I had every other time.

Six months have changed my life….

The road has not always been smooth or flat. The path to enlightenment has not always been clearly marked. There are times when it seemed I was moving away from who I am much more than moving toward what I want to be.

Six months have changed my life….

Many have ventured on this journey before me. Many have faced obstacles of health, physical impairment or mental reluctance. All have faced the same fear and uncertainty that I face every day.

Six months have changed my life….

These last six months have taught me that the blessing isn’t that I find my way to the finish line….it’s that I had the courage to start.

 

Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.– Maria Robinson

Don’t Discriminate

It is no secret that I love the Food Network. I want to be on it, I watch it constantly, and I could probably tell you more about the lives of the chefs on that channel than I can about Oprah Winfrey or George Bush.  Some people are obsessed with movie stars and famous athletes, while I’m busy stalking Alex Guarnaschelli, Aaron Sanchez and Giada DeLaurentiis on Twitter.

I want to secretly discover an invitation to participate on Chopped in my mailbox and would likely have a panic attack if I ever got into an elevator and saw Bobby Flay standing there.  But I have to be honest – the FN chefs like some gluten in their cooking.  I’ve tried to mentally come up with gluten-free versions of all the recipes that I see made, but the truth is, a channel devoted 100% to cooking is a shitty place to go when you can’t eat many of the things you see prepared.

What if a GF chef wanted to be a judge on Iron Chef? Or a contestant on Hell’s Kitchen or Top Chef? I just don’t think it’s possible. Imagine being a child of Paula Deen’s and having Celiac Disease? Would she acknowledge them?  I wonder if she’s got a secret daughter hidden off camera that was ousted for never being able to eat fried chicken or biscuits and gravy. Would Mario Batali disown his child for having to stay clear of pasta?

And so it got me thinking – why don’t we see chefs with Celiac Disease? Granted cooking GF is a niche thing, but there are plenty of shows on cooking for the vegetarian lifestyle that I’m sure non-vegetarians watch. I want to see something that I can enjoy! I want it GF and I want it now!  (And yes, that last sentence should be said with your best Veruca Salt impression.)

Vodpod videos no longer available.

 

Why is All-Purpose flour the thickening agent choice for every chef that has a cooking show? Why not try corn flour or rice flour? Why can’t Rachael Ray dredge her chicken in cornflake crumbs instead of panko? I seem to remember a low-carb show….a low calorie show. How about a GF show? Hire me to do it!!

Stop discriminating against us!!! (Ok so I’m not saying it’s discrimination…just saying it would be nice to cater to all dietary needs every once in a while.) I will continue to watch the Food Network like it’s my job…and continue to secretly dream that it really was.

And while on the topic of cooking…I have a recipe that you really must try…if you’ve never had quinoa – this is certainly a great way to eat it!

 

Big thanks to Gluten Hates Me for the recipe! Amazing GF recipes and a fantastic blog as well!

____

As for the weigh-in – although slight, there was another loss this week.

 

Getting closer and closer to being under 200 for the first time in a long time…looking forward to celebrating that milestone with you!

 

Until then, you can find me in the kitchen…

 

“Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all.

– Harriet Van Horne