Archive for General

I am Amazing

If you’re on Twitter, you’ve probably seen the “Exposed” movement going around. Women (and men) are making blog posts celebrating their bodies…many are even posting pictures of themselves in just a bra and underwear (well, just underwear for the men). And they are celebrating what is amazing or special about themselves.

There will be no picture here. I wrestled with the idea of doing one, but I’m not ready. But I decided that it shouldn’t keep me from celebrating.

I’d like to say that this is easy for me. I’d *like* to say that. Truth be told, I hate my body. I want to accept it for what it is, but that’s very hard. I have fought it my entire life – I started being the fat kid in 2nd grade, and just continued to grow into the fat woman I am today. I went on my first diet in 3rd or 4th grade (it wasn’t called a diet, and it was actually a really good program, which made the parents come in and learn everything us kids were learning). I’ve been on a diet off and on for many of the past 30 years. (I took a hiatus during the ’90s, because I noticed that I kept pinning my self-worth to the scale. I made the wise decision to try to get to like myself without being on a diet – I think it helped, at least helped me to like myself even if I didn’t like my body.)

I feel like my body is the enemy…but that’s not what this post is about. I want to celebrate.

I have killer calves – they are huge, but mostly all muscle. Why? Because I bike. A lot. In the past 7 months, I have pedaled 500 miles on my bike. Another 500 miles on the stationary bike. I did a 50-mile ride in September, and a 30-mile ride filled with hills.

I have a pretty spectacular brain…I’m not too shy to say that. I use it to share the mysteries of the Universe with school teachers and their students. I have studied black holes at the centers of galaxies.

I have hands that make some cool crafts. Most recently I preserve my memories in scrapbooks. I have sewn numerous clothes, blanket bears, and costumes, weaved a couple beautiful baskets, and cross-stitched some spectacular birth announcements.

I have ears that listen. They hear jokes and laughter, but also listen to hurt and pain. They are always available for anyone who needs a sympathetic listener.

I have arms that are good for hugging – hugging hubbies, kitties and puppies alike (and nieces when I get a chance!)

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New low…not in a good way

I’ve never cried at a picture of myself…until today.

I don’t quite understand it. I’ve been fat my whole life. It’s not like it’s a surprise. I don’t avoid cameras. I’ve seen lots of pictures of myself. I’ve even been at my current weight (plus or minus a bit) for a while now, so it’s not like my current body is a shock. But there I was…crying over a picture of myself, ashamed of my body.

The ride we did on Sunday had professional photographers at a few points along the route, and the pictures showed up today. I went to look at mine. And cried.

I think it’s because I’ve been feeling like such a badass this season…in fact I supposed to blog tonight about reaching 1000 miles on Dailymile. For the first time, we trained all season…seriously trained. We set a goal that I wasn’t sure I could make, and I did it…50 miles. Yay us! (Of course, as soon as I try to be proud about that, the negative self-talk kicks in: sure, you did 50 miles, but you did it at a snails pace. Need to figure out how to get rid of that.)

But looking at that picture, of me on the bike, just took away all my good feelings. I look so fat. I mean, again, not a surprise, but it just hit me how ridiculous I look on my bike. If this is how others see me out there, its a wonder I don’t hear more laughter.

Now, I’m not bitching about just a few extra pounds…this is my first time admitting this on this blog, but I’m more that 100 pounds overweight. And I could see every one of those extra pounds.

I’m trying to turn this around, trying to tell myself that making these goals with all that extra weight makes them all the more impressive…how many morbidly obese women are our there doing 50 miles on the trail? Instead I’m still crying.

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My biggest challenge

First a little background. I get migraines. I’ve had them for years and have identified three triggers that can explain about 90% of them. Those triggers are:

  1. Skipping lunch, or getting a late lunch. For some reason if I haven’t had lunch by about 2 or 2:30, my body decides that I need a migraine as punishment.
  2. The end of a stressful event. Fortunately, I don’t get punished with a migraine during my stress, but a day or two after the stress is gone, I get one. This can be good stress (like my wedding) or bad stress (like my PhD thesis defense).
  3. Rapid changes in the barometric pressure. Spring and fall are particularly bad times for this type of migraine.

Clearly, there’s not much I can do about #3, so I just ride those out. And, there isn’t much to do about #2, except be aware that I shouldn’t make any big plans for the day or two after a stressful event. But #1 is easily preventable – I now carry a protein bar with me all the time for the occasions when I’m not going to be able to get a full lunch by 2PM.

However, because of #1, I now associate headaches with hunger. This might not be a problem….except, I now have a headache every day. I clench my jaws and grind my teeth at night. Every night. One morning in December 2002 I woke up with a headache, and I have had a headache every day since.

I’m not looking for sympathy. I’ve been to the doctor (many doctors) and have learned to deal with this and manage it as best I can. From my research, there is no cure for this. There is a drug that will help to stop the clenching, but the body develops tolerance after a short time, and the grinding returns. I don’t want to go that route. Basically I’m stuck with this.

So, I’ve got a headache every day. Most days I don’t really notice unless I think about it. I only take over-the-counter drugs (Excedrin is my drug of choice), and I only take those when it gets bad. In fact, I’ll only take drugs once every week or two – I don’t want to become desensitized to it, nor do I want to develop rebound headaches.

This is my challenge. Remember #1 above? I associate headaches with hunger. And I have a headache every day. All day, every day. I have had to retrain myself not to eat every time I have a headache, but I still think I’m hungry when my head hurts. Days where my headache is particularly bad (today is one of those days), I just want to eat all day, because I’m just sure that food will help lessen my pain.

That is my biggest challenge in shedding pounds. What’s yours?

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Two years on, more jiggly and tired of it.

Hi all. I know it looks like we’ve abandoned this blog, but I’m ready to come back. It’s been 2 years, I finished my thesis in there, ate really, really badly and gained a lot of weight. I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been, and I really want to reverse this trend.

For the past few months (since January), I’ve been trying to be more conscious of what I’m eating, but I’ve been rather half-assed about it. I’ve also been trying to get myself exercising, but only succeeded in the past 2 weeks. (In fairness, I DDRed fairly regularly in February for a couple weeks until I messed up my knees.)

So, I’m putting it out here, for the world to see. I’m back, and I’m ready to start getting serious about getting healthier. I want to craft my goals around being healthier, rather than weight-based goals. Why? In the past, when I tied success only to my weight, I would hate myself whenever the scale stayed the same or went up. This time, I want to measure success by doing healthier things, with the hope that this will lead to weigh loss.

So, stay tuned. I’m hoping to talk some of the former jiggles into joining me, no matter what their goals are. However, I **have** to do this regardless.

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