Commit Me

Week #4

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That kind of gives the impression that I am losing my mind and I need to be committed.

But, what it really means is I am about to pay for 10 sessions – 10 classes of Zumba which commits me to this ‘New You”, self-imposed program. This mommy – with the doughnut role smack in her middle has caused me enough wardrobe malfunctions, is ready to make a change.

I seriously still feel like total crap when I’m done with the hour-long class so much so that I need to plop on my bed with the AC on and just breath for about 30 minutes before I start doing any household chores.  That part sucks. However – this past week after chilling out and 3 hours later when it was time to cut veggies and bake and cook dinner, I listened to the songs we exercised to and was moving enthusiastically around the kitchen. Every once in a while a little Cha-Cha and hands-in-the-air move made my kids giggle and smile with pure joy. Did I look silly? probably. Did I care? Nope.  It made me feel good.

It made me feel great – so I’ve decided to up my game (though the money spent will go much faster). There seems to be also a class forming one night a week and I’m thinking – I may join every other week.

If there is one thing I need to change it’s definitely my eating habits – I mean, just writing this post I inhaled about 6 sandwich cookies dipped in milk because, well just because. I brought the pepper, the plum and a  pear. I washed them and plan on eating them also – but I grabbed for the cookies, *sigh. One day I’ll get there, I just hope it’s soon.

Perhaps I’ll start a mantra-a-day, I do not want the cookie, I do not want the cookie. I should just pour black pepper on one of them and force myself to eat it – you know like therapy. Totally psych myself out of eating them. But I won’t. I want to love quinoa and bran flakes. I actually watched someone eat a plain white yogurt and every few seconds she’d stuff a bunch of bran flakes in the small container. I asked her if she did that to enhance the boring no frills taste of the yogurt or because she actually liked it. – She liked it.  She has amazing skin and toned everything too. Some people are born with it. Some people need to work on it.

I am excited to be one of the ones that need to work on it. I’d hate to have a gorgeous figure and not appreciate it. So – here we are, at week #4 and I am officially committing to (some) change.  I live in a country with universal healthcare so I am tempted to make an appointment with a dietitian – but first things first – I just made an appointment for all my kids to visit the dentist for checkups and one to the orthodontist for braces (eek!). I know that’s just an excuse…baby steps though.

To be continued…

Recycle, Reuse, Refuse

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Well, yesterday was a fast day for Jews. 25 hours without food, certainly a great jump-start in order to go the even healthier route. That WAS the plan – but old habits die hard and since it was my hubby’s birthday, I spent the afternoon baking cupcakes  – but they were mini. Perhaps I shouldn’t have used the recipe that included mayonnaise. *sigh.

I am a huge fan of recycling, my husband used to work for the EPA – that’s the Environmental Protection Agency, for the Federal Government – big stuff  and he would come home with all this information and it psyched me up for saving the earth. I took recycling to a new level in our teeny household. I’d save toilet paper rolls and paper towel rolls and milk containers and turn them into pencil holders and bird-feeders creating a massive collection of children’s projects. I’m not sure when my enthusiasm for this stuff faded but my youngest children now are asked by their teachers and camp counselors to collect all this stuff and I end up getting what I call, ‘garbage art’ because while I send my children with items like cereal boxes and toilet rolls other parents are handing in yogurt containers and pill boxes – so I get this collage of crap so to speak. On the more positive note, we make sure at home to recycle glass, paper, plastic and soon we are to separate even compost-y type stuff – which is kinda icky but I’m sure once we get used to it…

…much like dieting. I tend to hold on to that last chicken leg or the last burger and try to think of ways to reuse the food so as not to waste it. So there is the 3 day old chicken that gets recreated into the chicken pot pie, or the burger that becomes a sloppy Joe…to see the food go to waste is terrible. Not because there are children dying in Africa (thanks mom, I must have gotten this complex from hearing you say this a zillion times when I was a kid) but because I understand the value of money – and when I work hard all month-long to buy the food that my kids claim they like but refuse to eat it for the second time that week (the horror!) I end being the human garbage can. I eat the leftover half of hot dog and the few fries off their plates because throwing it away feels like failure. I didn’t make them eat all their dinner, like my mom used to make me. By throwing away the food, I am throwing my money away. Should I wrap up their leftovers and make them eat it the next day? To teach them a lesson or 2? Not to take more than we can eat. Not to be wasteful.

I used to be a really picky eater as a child. I used to hate lima beans and love cookies. (Still do, but will tolerate most other beans). I really try to not that mistake with my children. While its important me to make sure they eat balanced meals and healthy options, I don’t force them to eat foods they do not prefer.

I refuse to continue my eating habits the way they have been. I would eat whatever I wanted, when I wanted and I justified it. Its late and I need something sweet. I’ve got my period so I’ll pig out. I’m too tired to cook. I’m too depressed to eat anything that requires work. Excuses, excuses! I will probably stick to this plan for another few weeks (until the next period, maybe) and unless I see real progress, like my skirts getting loose or my boobs deflating a size I know myself. But I recently read one of Jeff Haden’s posts. He’s a ghostwriter, speaker guy that I follow and he really impressed me with his list of  The Worst Excuses For Not Changing Your Life. I qualified 10/15. I roller coaster with the idea of losing weight and it usually begins when I get to rock bottom  – all that self loathing!  I get really psyched and then I start to lose momentum and fizzle out with a bag of chips and tall cup of soda with lots of ice. But so far so good. I am making decent choices food-wise. I am at least exercising for 1 hour a week and that’s a start. I know I have a long way to go. But for now – this is pretty good – for me.

Tune in for more rambling…

Well, It Didn’t Kill Me

Week #2

egg2After the first week I was almost certain I was going to give up. But, I didn’t.  I paid money for it and everything. I stood in the same place as I did the week before. Last row, in the back, all the way to the left.  I know my dancing skills are not good. No, way off base here when it comes to rhythm and grace. I gave it my all and still got crazy red in the face.  I wonder where my sweat glands are…they seem to be non-existent when I exert myself. I NEVER sweat, I just sort of  get beet-red. Not too pretty but neither is being overly sweaty. There are 2 women in the class that really sweat and even start to undress until they are in their tank tops, as I watch them from behind I can see sweat forming on their backs, I am shocked and even a bit jealous.

But so be it – that’s not my thing. I really love the music – recognize some words and often mess up the dance moves. I look like a damn fool but I know I must be burning calories? Fat? Brain cells? I am having fun, I can laugh at myself when I mess up and one of my good friends (a front row type person) always turns around between songs to make sure I haven’t yet passed out. I give her this weird half smile so she knows I am still alert.

One of the greatest parts of this class is the amazing instructor. She’s not fake smiley, but genuine smiling, encouraging, and enthusiastic. It totally helps that I can see her checking us out from the front mirror. I feel like she’s got our back and when she sees we (most probably me) are not following she gives the direction loud and clear. She seems sincere and that’s helpful. I hate some classes where the instructor is fake nice and is totally into her own body and workout.

So after this week’s class I was ready to be alone – not to shmoozy, ya’know – I was hot and bothered and didn’t take the car this time so I had a nice cool down and walk home.  I kept myself hydrated and of course, as soon as I got home, climbed the stairs to plop into bed. This time though my legs didn’t ache, my arms didn’t ache just my lower back gave me some grief.

The whole experience was way better than the week before and I wonder if it’s because I did not exert myself as much as last week or that my body got used to being more stretchy than it has been for the last 20 years. Either way, I felt good. I felt better for making an effort. I even contemplated doing the Wii Zumba at home with the kids.

One of the best feeling was on Friday night when I got all dressed up to go to a neighbors dinner party and my 11 year-old daughter said the Zumba was working and that I looked really good. Validation people.

I am always so hard on myself and so critical and it was nice to look at myself through someone else’s eyes for that brief moment. No weight loss yet – but maybe I should start eating better as well, huh?

I AM THE EGG

Week #1

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Eh? Ok. I’ll explain. I started taking Zumba in order to you know, “get healthier”. The truth is, I am a chubby mom of 5 and always finding ways to become slimmer. Not because the magazines with all my favorite models and actresses are making me with their secret ad initiatives and computer touch-ups. Because I am tired of back-fat – ew. I am tired of cottage cheese thighs – uch. I am tired of a dangling double chin – ever so present just waiting for the right moment to turn into a rooster’s wattle. (just learned that word!) – so gross. And I am so sick and tired of some dumb idiot-people asking me when I’m due.

One time I was in an elevator with a stranger and she asked when I was due. I raised my eyebrows and asked, I’m sorry did you ask me, what I do? She looked confused and like one of the idiot-people asked again, ‘no, WHEN are you due?” – to which I chuckled and asked, “when are YOU due”? – she was like 75 years old. With wrinkled brow – she asked if I needed glasses (FYI, I was wearing glasses at the time, hello McFly!). So I threw it back to her – do YOU need glasses? She mumbled something about just trying to make small talk – to which I said, well if you must know, I just had a miscarriage  Which was evil – because I didn’t, but I wanted to make a point. In theory, that could have been my story, either way, even if I told her the truth and said, no I’m just fat – she would have been embarrassed. Was it my intention to embarrass her? No. But I don’t always make the best verbal decisions on the spot. I was annoyed that she had the nerve to ask me – any number of things could have been going on with my belly. No one goes up to a complete stranger in an elevator, (oh, btw – we were in an elevator) and says, I noticed that mole on your face, it’s hard not to, have you gotten that checked? (and lets say she did and it was cancerous) Or, someone says to a young bald man, wow you sure lost it early, huh? (and he’s in his 3rd round of chemo).

Seriously people where are your sensitivities?

So while I was in my very first, and free (trial) class, there were 2 moms in front of me. Women I knew from the neighborhood – with amazing lithe bodies which bore children adn man, could they move. They were skinny, but not like too skinny, skinny and fit and muscular and toned and ugh. They had rythym and could shake, shimmy, jump turn and bend and were really stretchy and amazing. And then there was me. In the back row, comparing myself to these women (who are amazing and normal and sweet – so its hard to hate on them). All I kept thinking was, I am the egg. I am the egg.

I’ve never been skinny, except randomly after baby #2, which was a complete fluke and lasted not very long. Now, when I say skinny – I mean a size 10. So this is not a ‘new’ thing for me, this chubbiness. I’ve always wanted to fit into clothing better. I want to NOT detest exercising. I want to love vegetables and whole grains and flax seed. I want to have sculpted arms and a flat(tish) belly. I want my kids to know the importance of taking care of one’s body.

And so, there you have it. I ached for 2 days after. I could barely even make it up the stairs to drop myself in bed. My appendages hurt in all their joint places and I seriously had a hard time for 2 hours afterwards taking deep breaths. I begged my children to give me time to get back to ‘normal’.

They sort of listened.

I want with all my heart to be committed, so there you have it. The freebie class was great.  I signed up for week 2.

To be continued…