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November 2011
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January 2012

December 2011

What if?

I stopped making a big deal out of New Year's Eve a long time ago. Too many expectations to make it fabulous and exciting and meaningful and glamorous.

But darn it! The end of 2011 is so ripe for making big, stinkin' proclamations. The end of the week, the end of the month, the end of the year and the beginning of the year that I turn 50.

So ... 50 pounds.

There. That's my goal for 2012.

It's totally realistic -- less than a pound a week. And it will bring me to pretty much done with my weight loss.

Do you know how many times I've made a New Year's resolution to lose weight? Decades of Dec. 31 deals with God, wishing on stars, holding the lucky end of a turkey wishbone.

Actually, I did lose 15 pounds this year, getting down to pre-baby weight, so I made good on the nebulous "lose weight" resolution.

But what if?

What if this IS the year?

What if I get rid of those 50 pounds?

What if next year's goal is to get the last 20-ish pounds off? (That sounds so easy compared with 50.)

What if I actually stick to a program for just one day? I'm terrible at sticking to eating plans. I tend to veer off on a whim. But 24 hours, that's all. How hard can that be? Then I'll do it again and again.

Do I have it in me to make it a reality this year?

Do you have it in you to make it a reality this year?

Don't buy crap with coupons (and check your bra straps)

So I was on the 11 p.m. news last night. Don't worry -- an alligator didn't eat my dog nor did I drive my car into an ice cream parlor (typical South Florida news stories).

No, I was talking about my secret skill -- couponing.

I've been doing it since college -- as a journalism major and longtime newspaper employee, Sunday coupon circulars were easy to come by.

But here's where coupon clipping can trip you up with weight loss (tying this into the theme of the blog) -- don't buy something just because you have a coupon. If you're clutching a coupon for chewy chocolate chip granola bars and you don't own a toddler, slip that coupon under the box of bars at the grocery store and make someone's day.

Many coupons are for processed foods, candy, sugary cereal and even dog junk food (you don't need Tuna Helper and your dog does not need Pupperoni).  Resist the urge to clip those and instead clip the ones for non-crappy foods that can help your weight-loss plan, such as coffee, produce, Greek yogurt, eggs, frozen fruit and veggies, and almonds.

Coupon gameplanI don't blog about couponing because I'm not "extreme" about it. I don't dumpster dive for newspaper circulars, South Florida stores don't double coupons, I don't have a basement to stockpile and I'm not a fan of ramen noodles. (Ever watch Extreme Couponing? For the most part, the families eat crap. "More pizza rolls and orange soda kids? Here, wash it down with a big glass of liquid soap.") My tools are at left: A small coupon organizer, preprinted shopping lists and the weekly ad -- either in printed form or on the web. (Yes, I'm a total Publix fangirl.)

When people say it costs too much to eat healthfully, I say "Ha!" Yeah, you can go through the drive-thru and pick up a cheeseburger for a buck, but you can also pick up a metric ton of fresh green beans for the same price (OK, I exaggerate), rinse them and microwave them for a couple minutes. On Christmas Eve, my two main side dishes for eight people were steamed green beans and sweet potatoes. The green beans were around a dollar and eight sweet potatoes were around $1.50. That's cheap food, folks. And I didn't even need a coupon for those.

Here's the video from last night. (All week the only thing on my mind was "my bra strap was totally hanging out of my shirt," but alas it stayed hidden.)


And now, a little too many boat analogies

2012 reboot chalkboard copy

I've wiped the slate clean a few days early.

Looking back over the year, I lost 15 pounds. Not the 50 pounds that I thought I was going to lose, but I didn’t gain any weight. And I can now finally say that I'm a runner. It's not fast and it's probably not proper form, but I know it's not walking. And my waist measurement is in the 30s.

Fifteen pounds is nice but the rest has got to come off in the next year. And why wait until Jan. 1?

There’s no time like the present to turn the ship around if it’s going in the wrong direction, and since my “stern” side is bigger than my “bow” side, it may take a little time to turn it around. I've been in "weight loss mode" since the age of 10 and next year I turn -- aaack -- 50.

But the ship is turning.

And now, off to run my “aft” off.

Tunes for Tuesday: Shut Up and Drive, by Rihanna

Heard this one yesterday while running. Ever listen closely to the lyrics? It was speaking to me. Perhaps I was reading a little too much into the lyrics, but the phrase, "Baby, you got the keys ... now shut up and drive" had me thinking:

"Exactly! I know how to exercise right and eat right. Those are the keys -- now shut up and drive."

(And yes, I know the song's not about driving or running, but I take my inspiration where I can.)

Motivation Monday: Tony-Tony-Tony has done it again

I was planning on working today but first I was slogging through my emails, watching the Today show and checking Facebook.

Then I read this:

I did not lose weight by feeling sorry for myself.....

I lost weight by feeling exhausted after a workout.
I lost weight by feeling out of place by saying no to foods others could eat.
I lost weight by feeling relieved that I could buy clothes at normal stores.
I lost weight by feeling I could.

Everyone loses weight differently. The beauty is.... I am no different.

CrybabyIs that fantastic, or what? It was a wall posting from Tony Posnanski, aka The Anti-Jared, a blogger who lost over 200 pounds and writes from the heart and from the gut. His Facebook posts and blog posts are a kick in the butt to me. They remind me that I have to stop being such a freakin' baby (me, at left) about making sacrifices to lose weight.

Yes, you have to sacrifice some things. You can't baby yourself, and when I get all "wah, wah I don't wanna" about things, Tony's there to knock some sense into me.

He can be brutal and blunt but also inspiring and funny and very, very helpful. Go read his blog, fan him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter.

So after I read his Facebook post, I ran out the door and kept running for 6 miles. It was hot and sunny and I was dousing myself with my water bottle, but I did it, and I felt great when I finished. And I'll keep doing it.

Because I can.

Back to the familiar

A year ago in November, I went on Nutrisystem and lost some weight, and learned how to eat out of a box. dropped 30 lbs, but after 3 months, lost steam and gained back 20 lbs.  

The life-long battle of the bulge is a constant in my life.  I didn't wake up and find myself at this weight.  What I have learned is HOW to lose weight.  What I need to do (and not do) in order to lose weight.  What has worked for me and what has failed.  Sparkpeople-icon 

Today, I'm going back to the old and familiar. The tried and true. Calorie counting and making smart food choices.  And what will take me there is Sparkpeople.  

I am making myself (and my food journal entries) public to everyone... so count
 along with me... i_am_carol on Sparkpeople.

It's a vlog! Let's talk about danger zones

Shrinking Sister Carol came over today to pick up some stuff (we did a little home purging) and we got to talking about the Giant Mountain of Diet Books on my dining room table.

"Anything good?" she asked.

"They're all good as long as you pick one and follow it," I replied.

We then talked about the things that really trip us up:

And here's yet another HealthBuzz this week


Tunes for Tuesday: How Do You Spell Hanukkah, by The LeeVees

This is from my only favorite alt-rock Hanukkah CD -- Hanukkah Rocks, by The LeeVees. The band comprises Adam Gardner of Guster and Dave Schneider of the Zambonis.

Chappy Chanuka!

We'll be celebrating at an actual hockey game, watching a Zamboni between periods, so it's all kinda related.

And as a bonus video, here's a HealthBuzz!