Week 7: French Fries Did Me In…

Last week: 347lbs

This week: 348lbs

Loss: +1lb

This week, I really got off track.

When it comes down to it, I got too cocky. I was so thrilled at the idea of being in the 340’s, that I went to the grocery store and bought some frozen French fries. That totally threw me off. I ate way too much the night I brought them home and ended up feeling like crap.

You’d think, the next day, I’d back to juicing and eating beans and rice. Instead, I ordered out for takeout (Chinese) and it’s been a downward spiral since then, in a sense.

Also, disappointingly, I haven’t been working out.


Photo: Origamiancy

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Next to Conquer: The Treadmill

I’m having a really hard time getting motivated to work out.

It’s not that I hate exercise or hate sweat. I really do want to, not just make working out a daily part of my life, I want it to become an obsession. Even though I’m aging, I still yearn to do amazing things with my body and see what it is truly capable of.

I have a distant dream of being a female amateur bodybuilder. (However, when I did my interview with Yvette Nathen-Jones, she got me thinking about powerlifting.)

I want to wake up in the morning and, without much thought, get dressed and hit the treadmill before I do anything else.

Instead, I wake up, go to the bathroom to pee, go the kitchen for some water, and sit down at my computer. I get lost in work, researching, and checking out completely useless stuff.

The truth is, working out is not a priority. I really want to make it one.

For a really long time, I was confused about how much exercise I should be doing. A couple of days ago, I did an interview with fitness expert Debra Mazda. She’s worked with a lot of overweight women. Her suggestion is 60-90 minutes a day. I’m going to trust her wisdom, work out for 60 minutes, and trust it is enough.

I’ve always been interested in interval training. This morning I read this NY Times article about doing a workout in which you work out hard for one minute, recover for a minute, then go full-out again throughout the entire workout. I like the sound of this method and want to give it a try.

My goal is to get on the treadmill and do 3 20-minute blocks. One of those blocks will include the interval training.

As I type this, I feel excited about moving my body. I’m excited to push it, challenge it, and feel the high afterward. I just don’t know how to not give in to the million distractions I have here at my computer and make my workouts important.

It’s such a weird thing. I sit here all day long agonizing over wanting to work out, chastising myself for not doing it, and yet still putting it aside over and over.

I will figure this out.

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Eating Mindfully: A 28-Day Experiment

When I think back, I can vividly remember being a young child and always eating while watching my favorite TV shows.

I grew up on a farm. My mother and stepfather worked outside a lot while I spent a lot of time inside reading, listening music, and watching TV. Yeah, I did play outside, but, often times, I was the only kid around (my step siblings would always be bouncing back and forth from our house to their mom’s).

I can’t specifically remember feeling bored or lonely, but you’d think I would have had to have been. I think, without knowing it, I was numbing those feelings with bread, cheddar cheese, ice cream, and any good TV show airing on the three channels we had access to.

Fast forward to decades later when I moved to a city I hated. Now, I was eating pizza, burgers, and tons of junk food while I watched hours and hours of TV or spent the summers sitting at my computer checking out the Big Brother live feeds.

I don’t think I’ve ever owned a kitchen table. I’ve never needed one. I eat on my couch or at my computer.

Not paying attention while I’m eating is so engrained within me, it’s rare that I question the habit or wonder if I should do something about it.

About five years ago, I did come across the book Eating Mindfully: How to End Mindless Eating and Enjoy a Balanced Relationship with Food by Susan Albers. I liked the book, but I never implemented any of her suggestions.

This weekend, I started thinking about “mindful eating” again. Part of it comes from feeling frustrated about all the crap I ate last week and wanting to be more aware of what I’m doing rather than easily getting into the habit of zoning out and eating a ton of food.

Another reason I want to be more aware is because the more green juice I drink and the more I have fruits and veggies in my kitchen—cutting, washing, and just acknowledging their rich colors—I feel a deeper appreciation for putting that stuff in my body. That appreciation only lasts seconds. I want to hold on to it longer (if that makes sense).

I’m going to be reading the following three books, taking what I learn from them and eating differently. I want to do this for the next 28 days. I’ll be documenting what happens.

Mindful Eating: A Guide to Rediscovering a Healthy and Joyful Relationship with Food

By: Jan Chozen Bays

The art of mindfulness can transform our struggles with food—and renew our sense of pleasure, appreciation, and satisfaction with eating. Drawing on recent research and integrating her experiences as a physician and meditation teacher, Dr. Jan Bays offers a wonderfully clear presentation of what mindfulness is and how it can help with food issues.

Mindful eating is an approach that involves bringing one’s full attention to the process of eating—to all the tastes, smells, thoughts, and feelings that arise during a meal. Whether you are overweight, suffer from an eating disorder, or just want to get more out of life, this book offers a simple tool that can make a remarkable difference.

In this book, you’ll learn how to:

• Tune into your body’s own wisdom about what, when, and how much to eat
• Eat less while feeling fully satisfied
• Identify your habits and patterns with food
• Develop a more compassionate attitude toward your struggles with eating
• Discover what you’re really hungry for

Eating with Fierce Kindness: A Mindful and Compassionate Guide to Losing Weight

By: Sasha T. Loring

Eating with Fierce Kindness is not a diet, but a way to revolutionize how you think about yourself and about food. Eating with fierce kindness and compassion toward yourself, instead of shame and self-blame, will empower you to change your relationship to food and see yourself in a whole new light.

This book will guide you toward an understanding of why and how you are eating so you can successfully change your eating patterns. As you learn to reduce the stress and impulsivity that often drives emotional eating, you’ll also practice new ways to savor food and finally nourish your body the way it deserves.

Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Life

By: Thich Nhat Hanh

With the scientific expertise of Dr. Lilian Cheung in nutrition and Thich Nhat Hanh’s experience in teaching mindfulness the world over, Savor not only helps us achieve the healthy weight and well-being we seek, but also brings to the surface the rich abundance of life available to us in every moment.

Do you have any experience with mindful eating? Tell me about it in the comments below. I’d love to read how it went for you and what you learned along the way.

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Week 6: At Least I Didn’t Eat Cupcakes

Last week: 351lbs

This week: 347lbs

Loss: 4lbs


This has been a crappy week.

Sure, there has been a weight loss and I am happy and amazed, but I feel like I’ve gotten way off track.

It started Sunday night when I went shopping for cucumbers and came back with them and a bag of frozen French fries, a can of gravy, a box of gluten-free crackers, and a bag of Pop Chips. What’s insane is that I was eating this stuff while I was juicing.

This week, I ordered out for takeout more times than I care to admit. Ugh. I was doing so great in January and hadn’t ordered out for three weeks. Then I talked myself into ordering once and it has become consistent again. It is going to stop. It’s such an expensive habit.

Honestly, thanks to all the green juice I’ve been drinking, when I eat anything takeout (which, these days is mostly Chinese food) within just a few minutes of eating it, it comes out the other end very fast and liquid-y (if you know what I mean).

When I look back on the week, mentally, I was so happy to have lost weight (and finally be out of the 350’s), I kept celebrating with food. I felt good and wanted to feel better. I’ve done this sort of thing before. If I want to continue losing weight without having weeks like this, this behavior has to stop.

Next week, it’s back to beans and rice and raw food.

I’ve gotten so used to juicing everything, that I can’t even remember the last time I actually chewed any fruits or veggies. This week though, I ate two pears and some Clementine oranges. I have some Asian pears I’m eager to eat as well. I hope this is the beginning of a new phase of eating a bit more rather than drinking so much.


Did I mention it was a crappy week?

My sleeping schedule has been thrown completely off track. Every day this week I felt like I was never fully rested and just didn’t have it in me to work out. Starting Sunday, I am getting my sleeping back under control. I’m also starting my 12-Week Workout Experiment.

Photo by: kizzzbeth

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Eating Horribly When I’m Tired…

Today, I’m taking the blog in a bit of a different direction. I’m getting more personal than I have in previous posts.

Years ago, I used to keep an online journal and had no problem sharing all of the details of my life—both good and bad—but in the last five years, I’ve had no desire to share myself online. It’s kind of a crazy thing considering how, in the last five years, sites like Twitter and Facebook have become so popular and sharing details about one’s life is now the norm. Yet here I am sharing pretty much nothing.

Recently, I found Alana Jo’s blog. I loved how she was writing daily personal posts and found myself reading many of them and enjoyed getting a peek into how someone else was approaching weight loss. I realized, I was doing myself a disservice by not sharing my own day-to-day experiences.

So, here goes…

As I write this, I am exhausted.

Normally, I make juice on Fridays. Last week, I put it off until Sunday. I knew I had a lot of greens to juice, but I wasn’t expecting to make the biggest batch of juice I ever have. It ended up being 10 quarts. It took hours. My juicer heats up within 20 minutes and I have to take long breaks to let it cool down. Once the juice is made, it takes awhile to clean up.

Don’t get me wrong, all the chopping, juicing, straining, pouring, cleaning, etc is worth totally it. It’s just that making those big batches can be a chore.

Long story short: I was up all night and then only got four hours of sleep.

I have enough energy to be awake and get some writing done, but I find when I get like this, I have a hard time focusing on anything and also make really bad food choices. Like tonight, as an example. Even with 10 quarts of green juice in my fridge, I ordered out for Chinese food. I only got one thing, an order of spring rolls. The crazy thing is, I’m still staying away from gluten and sugar. I’m making a huge effort to stay away from fried foods. Most importantly, I’m trying to break my expensive habit of ordering food delivery. Total cost of those spring rolls: $25. It’s insane.

Also, I don’t get on the treadmill.I use the excuse that I’m too tired. Yet I can find the energy to talk on the phone or check out YouTube or TMZ. I get so angry with myself…

Vincent Van Gogh

Over the years, I’ve read about how lack of sleep leads to weight gain. I’ve always had a hard time getting into a regular sleep schedule, but I never believed it could be a cause of weight gain. Now, that I’m becoming more aware of my body and how it responds to things, I’m starting to see how lack of sleep really can impact the choices you make.

I’ve been focusing a lot on the “eating” part of things and sort of focused on the “move”. I feel like, I now have to shift my focus to the “sleep” so the other two things can get better.

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ESM Podcast: Episode #5: 200lb Weight Loss Success Story — Bill Barlow Interview Part II

In part one of our interview, Bill talked about what life was like as a 465lb man and the day he made the decision to change his life.

In part two, Bill talks more about the changes he made and the results he got along the way.

No matter how much you weigh or what health issues you may be experiencing, I hope Bill’s story will show you it is possible to regain your health…and your life.

Thank you, so much, to Bill for his time, for being so candid, and for answering all my questions.

Time: 56 minutes


Bill’s Web site

Bill’s YouTube Channel

Bill’s Facebook page

Read the full transcript of the interview: show


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ESM Podcast: Episode #4: 200lb Weight Loss Success Story — Bill Barlow Interview Part I

I have got an incredible, seriously incredible, interview for you.

For the past year and a half, I have been watching videos filmed by Bill Barlow as he documented his weight loss. I’ve watched him make tons of juice, massive amounts of salad, and, most impressively, lose 200lbs in one year.

I was so fortunate to get the chance to speak to Bill about his weight loss and ask for his advice on how we can all take what he has learned to lose weight, and, most importantly, get healthy.

This is the first part of the two-part interview.


Time: 60 minutes


Here is the link to the second part of the interview.

Bill’s Web site

Bill’s YouTube Channel

Bill’s Facebook page

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