Tag Archives: Goals

Mardi Gras, Weekly Weigh-In, and An Update On My Goals

I suck at living in New Orleans at this time of year. I’d rather eat my calories than drink them (especially in open containers on Bourbon Street,) and I live in the Central Business District (two blocks from the French Quarter on the clean side.) I didn’t grow up here, and while I have grown to love New Orleans, I cannot stand Mardi Gras. (My favorite Mardi Gras hashtag is one that I created, #GetOffMyLawn, which is funny because I don’t have a lawn.)

10988536_10206357698447958_6379379489296226331_n

This is what the traffic looks like from my rooftop. It’s typically slow moving until after midnight when the parades clear out.

The traffic flowing through downtown makes it impossible to enter my parking garage without driving the wrong way down a side street, and people come here from around the world to act like drunken lunatics. I’m all for having a good time, but I draw the line before naked people enact sex scenes on my sidewalk. (Yes, that actually happens…every year.)

10991163_10206420712623273_8716622633137272007_n

On a brighter note, it is easy to buy big hats, plastic swords, and over-sized beads while waiting to get home!

The revelry ends at midnight, at which time many of the locals begin observing Lent. (Did you know that the purpose of Mardi Gras is to get all of the partying out before the 40 days?) I’m not Catholic, but I have looked forward to the end of Mardi Gras every year since I moving here in 2012.

Many of my friends make goals and dedications during this time, and I think I can use this time frame to do something good for myself. My goal for the next 40 days is to exercise at least four times a week. For a long time that was something that I accomplished without much effort, but it’s been a long time since I’ve been consistent in my workouts.

I’ve seen positive results from taking control of what I consume. I have not had a doughnut since late September, and at this point I am no longer craving them. I quit drinking sodas almost six years ago, and throughout the last several years I have gone from no longer craving soft drinks to thinking they’re disgusting. It feels like doughnuts could become equally disgusting to me. I suppose time will tell. I also saw good results on the scale when I refrained from eating desserts for 21 days in January.

Now I’m expanding my focus to include breaking out of this cycle of lethargy that I’ve been in. I used to live for a good endorphin rush, but it took effort to get to that point. I’m ready to feel that way again.

I’m down another 2.2 pounds this week, which means that I’ve lost over 12 pounds since the beginning of the year. The losses aren’t huge, but if they stay consistent, I’ll be pleased with that.

Does anyone here dedicate anything for Lent? If so, what’s your plan?

One Month Later

It’s been a few days since I looked at my blog because I’ve been busy with things that are more important, but now it’s time for an update. My aunt, Debbie, came into town last week because her youngest granddaughter, who’s only four years old, has a tumor on her brain. it didn’t look good when she arrived, but after a six hour surgery we’ve learned that she does not have cancer. We’re so relieved, and it feels good to know that she’ll be able to go home without having radiation or anything else that could harm someone as little as she is. She’s laughing and playing now, and it will be years before she understands the severity of what she was facing going into that hospital. Kids are so resilient, and we’re all so thankful that she’s going to be okay.

It has been one month since I have consumed a sugary drink from Starbucks, and the same goes for doughnuts. If you don’t struggle with food, then you may not be capable of understanding how empowered I feel as a result.  That’s okay. You don’t need to. I feel awesome because I’m no longer a slave to caramel macchiatos and fresh glazed doughnuts even though I’m still a regular at Starbucks.

Starbucks New Orleans LA

Shannon and Ariel love coffee as much as I do, and they have helped me stay accountable.

Last week I decided that since I was feeling so good about not eating those sugary things, that I’d add all other sugary things as well. I decided to try one day without consuming sugary snacks, and it wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. I decided to try it again the following day, and I was successful in that too. Starting now, for the next month, I’m limiting sweets to Saturdays, but I was mindful of what I ate over the weekend as well because I was reminded of how incredible I feel when I’m in control.

I have a long way to go, but I’ve made more progress in the last month than I have in years. A month ago I was completely fed up and disgusted with myself, and today I feel like there’s hope for me. I’m taking it one day at a time, and I’m happier with myself than I’ve been in a long time as a result.

What’s your trigger?  Do you prefer sweet or savory foods? Do you have any tips for staying in control of your cravings?

 

 

 

Friends, Fitness and Other Stuff

I know that I mentioned that I’m working on a new blog, but when I start thinking about replacing this one with something else, I start wondering if it’s a good idea.  The name obviously doesn’t have the same meaning as it did when I started writing here, but it feels like me.

It’s always been about so much more than weight-loss.  It’s about the reasons that I gained weight in the first place, the reasons that I struggle so much to lose it.  It’s about finding happiness and peace and strength to do the things that scare me and invigorate me.  I’ve found a lot of that through God, family, friends and my church, but I don’t know if I’m ready to let go of something that has been such an important tool for my growth.

Kenlie and Friends

The truth is that if I knew how to give this blog the facelift that it needs, I’d simply do that.  I just don’t know much about the technical part of blogging, which is why it’s always been so simple here.  Maybe I should work on figuring that out (even though the other blog name is pretty awesome too.)

In other news, school has started again, and I can’t decide which classes to take.  I also decided that I wouldn’t drink anything at Starbucks this month until after I completed a workout.  It’s my home away from home, and I think it’ll work as pretty good motivation.

Last night while I was comfortably knitting on my sofa, the fire alarms went off in my building.  I put my sneakers on and walked from my floor to the ground floor (because we couldn’t use the elevators,) then I quickly walked up several flights of stairs in the parking garage to get to my car so I could leave.  My heart was pounding a little by the end, but I looked at it as a bonus workout.

Knitting

I’m looking forward to September because I love this time of year.  I made an exercise goal that has nothing to do with numbers, and I’m looking forward to seeing how it impacts my health.

Is anyone else starting a new semester?  Do you have any goals for the month?

Putting It Out There

Last week I wrote about the positive changes that have occurred in my life over the last couple of years.  After years of feeling unsettled, I finally have a happy little routine.  My life isn’t perfect, but I am definitely moving in  the right direction in many areas.  I’m happy with myself and my day to day life.

I find myself saying “thank you” when I think about the things that finally feel right again, and I’m sincere.  I just want to look different.  I suppose I want to feel different too (even though it’s hard to imagine feeling better than I do.)  I know that my health should always be a priority, and I just want to finish what I started.

I used to exercise whether I wanted to or not, but I have lacked consistency in that lately.  In the last 30 days,  I have done Bikram yoga several times.  I have also done Zumba and various forms of cardio, but I’m not doing as much as I should be doing.  That’s easy enough to change though.  I don’t mind the workouts – particularly after I remember how great I feel when I do it, but the food part is harder for me.

It is no secret that I eat more than I should.  I don’t binge eat, but I eat a few hundred calories more than I should in order to lose weight almost everyday.  I’m not sure if one is worse than the other, but I know that I’m not giving myself a chance to get it right.

Earlier this year I realized that I let my weight (and prior weight-loss) define me as a human-being.  I often wish I could walk into a room wearing a sign that says “Yeah, I need to lose weight.  I know, but I used to be much bigger than this.”  I wish I could explain that I’m happier with my life than I’ve been in years (except for the obesity part.)

I’m not sure if this is the time in which I’ll get it right or not, but I’m going to keep trying.  I did some healthy things for myself last month, and I’m going to do more this month.  I’m not going to post any lofty goals today, but I’m going to make some small changes this month and go from there.

I took a photo of myself on my 33rd birthday (last Friday) because I love the dress I was wearing – and because I’m working to make some healthy physical changes so that I can look and feel exponentially different in my 34th birthday photo.

kenlie - weight-loss birthday - 33 - new orelans

No one can take away the things that bring me joy now because they come from inside of me.  They come from knowing that through my faults, I still have to ability to make progress.  I also find a lot of joy in the progress that I’ve made within my mind because it seems impossible to fix the outside without fixing the inside first.

I have forgiven myself for the mistakes I’ve made in the past, and I am looking forward to a future in which I will look back at this photo and say thank you again…

 

 

One Great Day, Followed By Another Great Day

I made some goals yesterday and accomplished them all. It’s been a long time since I felt so good about my choices at the end of the day, and I plan to make today another day to be proud of.

Having one successful day is no reason to brag, but it feels good to remember what reaching small goals feels like. When I think back to my success in the beginning, nothing extraordinary or dramatic occurred.  I just made lots of healthy choices that added up.

image

My goals for today are the same as yesterday:

– drink at least a gallon of water
– track my intake
– exercise for at least 30 minutes
– consume 1400 calories or less (healthy calories!)

Accomplishing these things add up, and I was inspired to take control again as I did earlier this month.

My ankle hurts a little, but I was able to do 45 minutes on the elliptical yesterday. I plan to do an hour of cardio today. I’ll do some strength training as well.

What are your current goals? Are you taking steps that bring you closer to reaching them?

A Quick Update and Today’s Goals

It has been a week since I posted here, and I’m ready to get back on track today. Aunt Meme passed away shortly after my last post so Lance joined Mom and me on a trip to Houston over the weekend.  It was an emotional time, but I got to see Dad.  I even had the rare opportunity to take a picture with both of my parents which made me happy.

MOMDADME1

In other news, my left ankle has been bothering me a lot for the last ten days.  I twisted it while working out (during Zumba, I think) and haven’t taken time to stay off of it.  Instead I’ve walked from my place to the French Quarter and explored the stages being built for the Superbowl which is happening here this year.  Between Mardi Gras and the Super Bowl  it’s about to get crazy in my neighborhood!

cbs

I know it’s not wise to aggravate my ankle by walking a few miles around the quarter, but I also realize that I can’t afford to skip any more workouts at this point.  It has been over a week since I’ve done formal workouts, and when I don’t exercise regularly I lack energy.  I just don’t feel as good as I do when I sweat a little everyday.

I plan to ride the bike at the gym today because it will aggravate my ankle less than most things. Have I mentioned that it’s swollen and a little painful?

foot

My other goals for today include drinking a gallon of water and keeping my calories around 1350.  I did some meal planning too which always sets me up for success.  Now I just have to stick to it and remind myself that I love myself more than junk food.

What are your goals for today?

 

Numbers Mean Something

I know I’m going to get some flack for caring about the numbers on the scale as much as I do right now, but I’ve made it pretty clear that I’m going to say what I feel whether it’s popular or not.  I’m relieved that most of you understand and support me in that because I’m tired of fearing this number.

I have been within a few pounds of this number for what feels like an eternity, and I’m tired of it.  Right now it seems easier to climb Mt. Everest than to reach the 270’s, but I am determined to do it.  This is what I weighed at my last Weight Watchers meeting before I left New York for good, and it has haunted me since I left.

For a long time I let myself believe that I didn’t deserve to lose, and I didn’t.  I have already admitted that I’ve spent far too long just getting by, but I deserve it now because I’m working for it now.  I’m so close too, and I have decided that I will allow myself to succeed.

I forgive myself for the time I’ve wasted and for the mistakes I’ve made, and I am claiming success.  And right now, success feels like letting go of the past and moving into a stronger, healthier future that I am creating for myself.

I’ve taken a lot of steps toward the life I want since January, and shedding weight needs to be among my primary focuses again.

I want to do better, and for the last several days I have been.  I just need to keep it up, and that’s the plan.

Maybe the numbers don’t matter to you; maybe they shouldn’t matter to me, but the fact is they do.  I’m going to crush this goal, and the reward will be believing that I can finish what I started.

Do you have any short-term goals?   If so, what are they?

Have I Reached My Tipping Point?

I joined Weight Watchers in 2009, and I lost over 100 pounds.  Awesome, right?   (I know.)  I’ve said it over and over, “I’m proud of my accomplishments with weight-loss so far, etc. I know that losing a substantial amount of weight (and keeping it off) is a good thing, a hard thing…I should be proud of myself,” etc.  But I am so utterly tired of repeating myself, and yet, I’ve spent the last several months feeling helpless to change that.

My goal, when I walked into my first WW meeting, was not to lose 100 pounds.  In fact, I didn’t have a goal beyond the next week.  “Just lose something so you’re a little lighter next week, self.”  That was the plan.  It was not about the key chain or the charms or the 5 pound stars.  Instead, my focus was on nothing more than just weighing less next time I stepped on the scale.  I quickly began to love ‘Bravo’ stickers because those seemingly insignificant things like eating 4 bites of ice cream and tossing the rest or saying no to nachos at the movies collectively yielded big results.

I didn’t get specific about processed and unprocessed foods…nor did I waste time feeling guilty when I indulged in my favorite things like pad thai or cake.  That is, after all, the beauty of Weight Watchers.  I simply tracked it – something that I did religiously when I was losing weight like a champ – and moved on.  And that worked.

Looking back at the last year I am forced to face the realization that I weigh almost exactly what I did at this time last year (3 pounds heavier actually, according to my home scale this morning.)   Over the last several months, I’ve fought tooth and nail to hang on to what I’ve already accomplished though I realize that my efforts look futile.

I still have more than 100 pounds to lose, and I’ve been pretty candid about that in posts over the last year.  I’ve also been candid about the ups and downs, but I haven’t lost weight.

In the fall, I rejoined Weight Watchers, and I started to see the numbers coming down again.  I started to find a new groove then I started traveling.  I started missing meetings, taking birth control pills, drinking less water…and I didn’t fully commit to tracking.  Sure, I did it here and there, but I wasn’t consistent and neither was my weight-loss.  I’m back (still have some travels on my agenda, but not like the last 2 months) so I’m going to face the scale Thursday even though I had planned to skip it until the new year. (Not sure what my thinking was there.  Excuses and denial, I guess.)

I stopped taking the birth control pills last week, and I’ve already noticed a significant increase in my energy levels so I’ll speak to the doctor about alternatives sometime later.  Right now, I’m just going to focus on taking off the ridiculous amount of weight I’ve gained since I began taking them.  I can’t blame them entirely for the change in my weight.  For the record,  I ate some fudge over the holidays and during my travels…and cookies and trail mix, etc.  But I certainly didn’t realize that the scale would show a difference of almost 20 pounds since my last weigh-in.  Seriously?  (And I thought I was doing pretty well.)

Whatever the reasons for it, my weight has been going up NOT down, but the same strategy that works for so many of you will work (again) for me.

  • I will track my food intake everyday – consistently and accurately.  
  • I will follow the Good Health Guidelines that WW has set for me (fruits and veggies, water, oils, dairy, activity…)
  • I will focus on today and not on the big picture (which is clearly too overwhelming.) 
  • I will strive to lose 2 pounds between each weigh-in (realizing that it adds up instead of worrying about how slow it all seems.)
  • I will exercise 4 to 5 times per week (even when I don’t feel like it.) 
  • I will not skip meetings because I don’t want to face the scale. (I’ve only done that once ever, but I will NOT do it again…period.)
  • I will not give up. 

It would be easy to look at my post (and my blog) and say to me “Whatever Kenz.  If you were going to do anything, you would have done it already.  You should just throw in the towel.”  And there are folks who do and will, no doubt, say that in the comments after this post though I probably won’t publish them.

But believe me, no one is as hard on me as I am.  It’s beyond frustrating to admit that I’m still obese even though I’ve been at this long enough to have reached my ultimate goal.  It’s embarrassing and humbling to realize  (and publicly admit over and over) that losing weight is harder for me than I ever could have imagined that it would be as I entered 2010.  But it’s much easier to accept the fact that I need to keep trying than to accept the fact that I have failed so I will not quit.

Here I am again, promising myself (and you) that I’m going to keep trying…I’m going to keep telling myself that I am worth the effort (even during times that I don’t believe it.)  And I am going to make weight-loss a priority again (instead of a chore) starting right now.

Attending Weight Watchers meetings alone will not be my salvation because my leader, Penny, cannot do it for me…WW CEO, David, cannot do it for me…My dad cannot do it for me. Those of you reading this cannot to it for me, but if I track and follow the guidelines (minus the free fruits thing which does not exist in Kenlie’s world) I have little doubt that I’ll see last results again.  And that’s what I want.

There’s no shortcut.  There’s no simple solution that will replace my time, my sweat and my efforts.  This is about me and my goals and my willingness to do what’s best for me and what matters most to me.

It’s late December, and I realize that I could wait until January to make some kind of resolution….But this cannot wait.  My health matters today.  My confidence and belief in myself matters today.  I believe I’ve reached my tipping point.  I’m ready to do things differently right now so I’m done writing, and now it’s time t hit the gym.