thebigcitygirls

Two best friends. Two weight loss goals. One blog.

8/12/13

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Ok Yeah, it’s been awhile…but I have a good excuse!

Hi all!

Jenai here. It has been a long time.  A very long time.  But in all fairness, I didn’t think it was appropriate to post about weight loss while I was pregnant and definitely not trying or even thinking about losing weight!  Now that I am not pregnant anymore (my beautiful daughter was born on May 26th!) I am starting a different kind of weight loss journey.

At first glance, it might seem like not much has changed with me.  I look to be about the same size as I was the last time I blogged, but a LOT has changed.  Let’s back track.

When I got pregnant I weighed about 194 lbs.  I gained slowly and steadily throughout most of my pregnancy, except for the last two months when I gained a lot of water weight and swelled up like a balloon.  At 39 weeks pregnant, I weighed 235 lbs.  The most I have ever weighed in my life.  But surprisingly, I really didn’t care at all.  I JUST WANTED THAT BABY OUT!

My blood pressure spiked and I developed a condition called pre-eclampsia so I was closely monitored by my doctor each week.  On top of this, my daughter was determined to be a BIG baby.  She was born at a whopping 9lbs 12 ozs.  I was in the hospital for about 5 days due to my pre-e and by the time we left, I had lost about 30 lbs.

10 weeks later I am at 192.  2 lbs below my pp weight.  My weight loss used to be motivated by a mixture of a want to be healthy and feel good and a want to look thinner and prettier.  Now, I want to be in the best shape that I can be to be the most active with my daughter and provide the best example for her.  I want to be healthier so that I can watch her grow and learn and become her own healthy young lady.  I want to show her a positive self image and help her to see that we are all beautiful in so many ways.

 

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So I may be back, but I am in a totally different place than where I started. :)

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Addiction

Here I am. Six months have come and gone since I last posted. I can say with 100% honesty, I am no thinner. No healthier. I am actually fatter. I’m 10lbs above what I thought was going to be my highest weight ever. I can think of a million excuses why.

Grad school is super tough.

I had pneumonia twice.

The steroids I was on when I was sick made me gain weight.

I’m just really busy.

Life got in the way.

Yada, Yada, Yada.

The fact is, there is no excuse great enough that should keep me from getting healthy…. from being healthy.

I recently took a substance abuse workshop at school. There are statistics showing that addicts will backslide numerous times on their journey to recovery.

So, is that what this is? Was this just another backslide on the way to recovery? Am I addicted to food?

Let’s see. Compulsive Overeating Wiki. Granted Wikipedia isn’t always the most reliable source, it serves this purpose.

Alright, I can definitely identify with some of the signs and symptoms. The binge eating when I’m not hungry, the shame and guilt I feel about my body and my eating habits, the depression and the anxiety, the decreased mobility, the withdrawal from certain activities due to embarrassment. Yeah, I can relate to all of that. Clearly, looking back on this blog I can relate to unsuccessful diets.

Similar to other addictions, the desire to recover comes from “hitting rock bottom.” I hit the bottom of the rock pretty hard today, hence why I’m back here at this blog.

I had to take a child abuse workshop for school. Since my last bout of pneumonia and this crazy heat we’ve been having, I’ve been pretty homebound (or at least minimal physical movement bound). Just walking from the car to class. Maybe a 5-10 minute walk was torture. Between the heat, my lung issues and my fat ass… I thought I might die. Thankfully, I did not. Largely due to my rescue inhaler.

Okay, so now I’m standing at the entrance to the classroom and it is a nightmare come true. Lecture hall stadium seating. Tell me you know the kind. Rows of seats that advance in height as they move toward the back of the room. The kind with a teenie tiny rotating desktop that barely fits an actual notebook and otherwise immobile armrests. Yes. This type of seating is what haunts a fat girls dreams. Right up there with airplane seats, movie theatre seats and stationary booths at restaurants. All of which I avoid on the regular. (Seriously, I requested a specific movie theatre two weeks ago just because I knew their armrests go up.)

For a few minutes I stood there actually considering going home, getting an F and retaking the course. I mean they won’t always have it in this room right? Or by then maybe I will be thinner and able to fit in these chairs?

Then I saw it. All the way in the back. The middle of the top row. A regular table with regular chairs. Without hesitation I went up and took my place there at the fat table. No one else needed to sit with me at the fat table. Not the young hip boys and girls who look like the just left Abercrombie. Not the studious men and women despite their struggles to take copious notes on those tiny desks. And not the two older  women who talked about their own kids throughout the entire class. Nope. Just me in all of my obese glory.

I don’t think anyone even cared. Maybe they didn’t even notice me. Maybe they did. Who knows. I noticed myself enough for the whole room. I spent the entire two hours trying to distract myself from the anxiety I was feeling about my seating arrangement. From the guilt of considering leaving. From thinking how my Mom and boyfriend support my going to school and I was going to walk away from class because I can’t fit in the seats.

What a mess. You see when I ask for a table at a restaurant or avoid the movies… no one gets hurt. Only me. Only I feel the shame and embarrassment. Or at least that’s what I think. I never talk about it with anyone at length. I simply say I don’t fit or I’d be more comfortable. I rarely go out with anyone that I’m not extremely close to. No one that wouldn’t love me anyway.

This time though, there would have been consequences. I would have gotten an F. Then I’d have to say “I’m sorry Mom, even though you work your ass off to support me going back to school, I refused to go to this two hour workshop because dieting and exercising is hard.” Yep, that would totally go over well.

So, what do I do now?? How many more times will I backside before I can start living my life the way I want it, NOT the way my size dictates. How long ’til I can say I’m in recovery? I don’t know how many more times I can take defeating myself. Ultimately it is a battle I’m having with myself and my own self control. I. keep. losing.

There is so much I want to do.

Travel.

Get married in a gorgeous wedding gown.

Play with my goddaughter.

Have babies.

Go to a movie. Anytime. Anywhere.

Ask for a booth.

Not worry about if I will fit in the desks at school.

How do I start living that life?

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This weekend did not go as planned.

If you had asked me last Monday what I planned on doing on the upcoming weekend I would have said something like “Buy my school supplies, complete my assigned readings, work out and plan my food for the following week.” Nothing too eventful, nothing out of the ordinary. Not one of those things happened this weekend.

Tuesday. Tuesday was the start of the deviation. On Tuesday I woke up not feeling great. I had been coughing here and there for a few days prior but had felt fine. Tuesday though, the cough was in full swing and walking to and from my car at school I thought I was going to die because I couldn’t breathe. I took my temperature at night and had a fever 100.1 degrees. James (the boyfriend, might as well start just using his name) and I decided I should probably go to Health Services on campus. James had be diagnosed with the flu on Friday; I wanted to make sure he didn’t share. Wednesday morning rolls around and I still felt really crappy but my fever was down to 99.5 or something close to it. I still make my way to Health Services. As soon as I walk in I notice the sign on the door. It said if anyone had a cough or fever they should go right to the window, which I did. They ended up giving me a mask to wear while I was waiting because this influenza epidemic is apparently very serious. The end result of the visit was that I had an influenza like illness. I was given a flu kit, including face masks to wear when interacting with others, tissues, information packets, a note for my teachers/supervisors and was banished from campus until I could go 24 hours without a fever. The Nurse Practitioner gave me an inhaler and the instructions that if anything got worse to head to the ER.

By 11pm Wednesday night my fever was 101.8, I had severe chills and I had on-going shortness of breath. I was exhausted and could barely move. I put on a tank top, t-shirt, long sleeve t-shirt, sweat shirt, wool scarf and a fleece before James drove me to the ER. Anyone that knows me will know that is an obscene amount of layers for me. I’m a big girl and I typically don’t get cold enough to warrant more then a fleece or sweat shirt- NEVER both at the same time. When I walked into the ER, once again, there were signs stating if you have a fever and cough to go right to the window and get a mask. Luckily, I was already wearing my own. I was quarantined away from everyone else. They put me in this freezing cold waiting room and refused to give me a blanket. I did not see a triage nurse and I began to get delirious. I could hardly lift up my arm and I thought at the time it was hilarious. Finally they took me into my own room and took my vitals. Fever 101.6 at that point. Then more waiting and no blanket. An hour and 1/2 later I asked James to go out and make them give me a freakin’ blanket. I was still shaking and cold! Finally, one of the nurses came in and gave me three Tylenol and a warm blanket. By warm I mean it felt like it was fresh out of the dryer warm. Heaven!! Then more waiting. An hour or so later I got a Motrin. When the doctor finally came in she looked me over and said nothing. Then more waiting until I got a chest x-ray. Finally, the doctor came back in a told me I had pneumonia. I got my first dose of antibiotics in the hospital and was sent on my way.

Since then I haven’t been able to do much without getting short of breath and coughing up a lung. I can barely sleep, even with the help of NyQuil and Vick’s I still cough like crazy. You should see the crap that comes out of my lungs.

I missed my first session with a client Wednesday, my first graduate level Language Development class on Thursday, my evaluation team meeting Friday and the rest of my orientation (I had something I should have been at Weds, Thurs and Fri). Not the way I wanted to start off my first week of Clinic/the semester.

My amazing Mom drove up from Long Island on Friday and took care of me while James was working this weekend. She cooked a ton of food for us and cleaned the whole apartment (between James being sick first and now me things weren’t looking so good). More importantly she kept me company which I really enjoyed. We watched Sherlock and I highly recommend it for those of you with Netflix.

I guess it goes without saying I haven’t worked out and I haven’t exactly been tracking my calories. However, I’m not eating too much anyway. Although, my appetite is beginning to grow again. Since I started blogging again I lost 10lbs. So I’ll celebrate that accomplishment and look forward to getting back on track one step at a time. Working out might take longer because they told me it might be hard for me to breathe for a while. Here are a list of the goals I will still be working on, just to make sure they’re clear:

  1. Follow my Sparkpeople meal plan.
  2. Track my calories.
  3. Sleep 8 hours a night.
  4. Drink 8 cups of water a day.
  5. Get healthy enough to work out.

I’m also going to participate in my first sparkpeople Biggest Loser Challenge. I’m on the team Pink Pythons. I can’t wait to get to know everyone and try to do my best with the weekly challenges. As of tonight we were required to post our weights and introduce ourselves. I’ll keep you posted on how that is going.

P.S. I just started watching Heroes on Netflix- I love how Hiro insists on driving a Nissan Versa. It’s a fabulous car, if you ask me. ;)

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Influenza like illness

Or at least that’s what the doctor at the student health services wrote on the note that banishes me from school.

My boyfriend had the flu last week and sure enough I started getting symptoms too. Last night I had a fever and decided it was a good idea to see a doctor.

I have the flu, have to wear a mask around others and I’m banished from school until I am fever free for 24 hours. This really stinks because I had my first client scheduled tonight and still have orientation tomorrow and Friday. This is not the best way to start an internship.

I’ve been instructed to stay in bed and relax. Needless to say there was no gym today. Although with the help of James I was able to stay on target with my caloric intake! See, always a silver lining!

More soon…

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Smokehouse Chicken

Here is the link to the delicious smokehouse chicken I made for dinner tonight.

Tips: Careful on how long you cook the turkey bacon in the oven at first. I had to take mine out of the oven at 12 minutes because the outside pieces were burning. I seasoned the chicken with Caribbean Jerk Seasoning and only used a little BBQ sauce on each piece of chicken (not even close to a whole bottle). I served the chicken with broccoli but it would work well with any veggie and maybe some brown rice next time.

Overall, fantastic recipe! It’s simple but tasty and leaves lots of room for you to make it your own. Thank you SARAHLYNN1285 @ Sparkpeople!!

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The bees knees.

I had a pretty great day today. I woke up only a half hour later than I planned and that managed to give me 7.5 hours of sleep. Soooo, close to my goal of 8 hours a night. I made it over to the gym and did a work out on the treadmill. The treadmill has a weight loss setting and I decided to try it. Maaaaaybe not such a good idea on my first day out of the lazy gate. The setting frequently increases the incline and I thought I’d try to do as much as I could. Well, I ended up having to lower the incline at around 10 minutes in and my knees have continued to hate me for the rest of the day.

I seriously cannot wait for the day where I can do whatever exercise I want and not feel unwanted pain because of it.

Other celebrations today are sticking to my meal plan, drinking 8 cups of water, cooking a delicious low cal dinner and making it through my first day of clinical orientation at school. :)

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3am Ramblings

I can’t sleep. I got up to use the bathroom and now I’m just lying in bed wide awake. One of my healthier lifestyle goals is to get 8 hours of sleep and I don’t think that’s gonna happen now. Any suggestions for this kinda thing? Maybe when I’m done writing I’ll try counting sheep.

One positive though, while I was just in the bathroom I felt thinner. I don’t even know if I am. I didn’t weigh myself. I just have this feeling of being less bloated. It’s actually a really great feeling, quite motivating.

Maybe there is a skinny girl in me after all?

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My first time…

Preparing fish on my own. Tonight I made baked salmon with brown rice, mixed veggies and a fruit cup as per my meal plan on sparkpeople. According to James (my boyfriend, who gets to be my culinary guinea pig) it was a success. I baked the salmon with just a little salt, pepper, garlic powder and a dash of old bay seasoning.

I was pretty hesitant to make fish on my own and I’ve been putting it of for quite a while. I was always under the impression if its not cooked well enough it meant massive amounts of food poisoning.

Well, it was certainly not that complicated to make. There is even a no fail way of knowing if the salmon is finished. If you cut open the thickest part of the fish and it flakes easily it is all done!

I suspect there will be a lot more experimentation with fish in the future. :)

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A new year means a new start, Right?

It’s been (about) four months since I last posted. An entire semester of school plus my winter break and I have bad, bad news. Not only have I not being serious about dieting and working out, but it was so excessive I actually gained all the weight I lost and then some. I feel awful, I look awful, and I’ve been having a hell of a time trying to shop for internship clothes (I start a clinical placement for my grad program on Monday).

It was actually shopping for work pants that made me say: “what the F*** am I doing? what happened to me?”  Well, I’m not going to dwell on what I did wrong. Beating myself up isn’t going to shed the pounds. I am going to focus on the future and gaining control of my life-style again.  My plan is the same as it was: Follow my sparkpeople.com diet and work out everyday. I’ve done the grocery shopping, I’ve prepped the food, and I’m ready to go. Let’s do this!!

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