Ah, Thanksigiving. The season for family, homemade dinners and thanks-giving.
What are you thankful for?
I'm thankful for many things.
- I'm thankful I actually got the chance to start graduate school and the fiscal resources to pay for it (no matter how much I bitch about being a TA, I have to look on that bright side. It also pays my tuition.)
- I'm thankful for a healthy family and four healthy cats. And, at the same time
- I am thankful for the time I DID spend with little Merlin
- I am thankful for all the friends who've stuck with me through the thick and the thin, the good and the bad.
- I am thankful to ChaoticMUX for simply continuing to exist. Alot of people may think it's dead or dying, but you know what? It doesn't matter. What matters is that I know that when I need friends to be with (whether in a good mood or bad), that they all congregate there.
- I am thankful I finally "saw the LITE" and started working on my weight, and that I've done so well so far.
OK, enough with the soppiness.
So I did get paid yesterday. Given that I had the majority of the day off, I went off and did a bunch of errands. Gassed up the car, got some salad, got some shoes, some of my flavored water, an ice scraper, picked up some certified mail, bought the Jim Carrey "Grinch" DVD for myself and rented " Planet of the Apes" for mom, and bought a game "The Incredible Machine: Even More Contraptions". I also got a free sweatshirt as I'm a UBEESC officer (the sweatshirt is from one of the parent associations: the Air and Waste Management Association.) and it looks quite nice :) Got the theory behind my final project for groundwater all figured out too (I think), so.. as you can tell, it was a busy day.
I doubt today will be half as busy. We're probably going to watch "Planet of the Apes" and I'll do laundry either today or tommorow.. otherwise i'll probably play The Incredible Machine.. or maybe Zoo Tycoon.. or maybe The Sims.
I LOVE Choices :D
There are two negative aspects to the day: #1: The Gym is closed for today and tommorow. This bothers me alot. As most of you know, the gym is my big secret to weight loss. As long as I work out (alot) in it, I feel like I'm at LEAST doing the things I need to do to lose weight. Also.. with the fact that i JUST stopped plateauing, I don't REAL:LY want to go back.
Of course, what happens happens.. I don't intend to curtail my eating habits. I LOVE Thanksgiving dinner. So.. whatever. Hopefully I don't gain weight. If I do, hopefully (most likely) it isn't much and I can lose it more or less just as easily.
#2: The Family Dinner. I DO love Thanksgiving Dinner... I love Turkey and Mashed Potato and Sweet Potato Pie and all of it. But today dinner will be strained. Why, you ask? Surely you aren't so obsessive you'll let your diet get in the way?? No. It's not that. It's my brother Marc. As a quick reminder for those of you who don't know the entire backstory.. Marc is the black sheep of the family. His adventures in the world (if anyone know what they all were and not the bits and pieces we get from phone calls and letters) would make a hell of a movie. Drugs, Gangs, Sex, Possible Fatherhood, being almost injured by a car bomb in Israel, finding religion etc.
My life may seem dull and drab by comparison, but I wouldn't switch lives for the world. I AM intelligent enough to stay away from drugs and gangs. I doubt I'd EVER go to Israel (if I had money to visit something, it'd be Great Britain and Ireland) and as for religion.. well... I'm pagan, but I don't go around wearing a pentacle, a ceremonial robe and having private pagan ceremonies before dinner. I have no trouble with the fact he's gone ultra-conservative Jewish EXCEPT for the fact that you can't be a good jew and break the 10 commandments the way he does continuously. If he became a good person who could even think about other people not himself and remained ultra-conservative.. more power to him. Until then... it's just a big joke.
And then Friday, we get to see the dear brother for a "Family portrait" my father wants us all to pose for. Here i'll be, in contacts, nice haircut, just lost 30 lbs.. I'll look pretty good. Marc will probably pose with his full length scraggly looking beard and his gang sign.. er.. I mean Jewish Star in front of his shirt.
Did you know in Buffalo the gang sign of one of the major gangs, the crips, is a Jewish Star? They have some reason for it... whatever.
Oh, and then after the pictures, we can all have lunch together and enjoy each other's sparkling company (gag gag gag. Don't like Marc. REALLY don't like my Stepmom. Dad is OK only when Elaine (the Stepmom) isn't on a rampage.)
Another set of thoughts I've been wondering lately... maybe it's the time of year or maybe it's my increased sensitivity to it, but has anyone else noticed that at least 50 or 60% of us want to lose weight?
I can see why the Diet industry is still booming.
And this leads me to another set of thoughts.
Why are we letting ourselves get so fat?
Once we become fat and try to lose weight, why can't we?
And once we LOSE the weight, why can't we keep it off?
I met a girl on Phat Chat last night who said she still needs to lose 250 lbs.
How can you DO that to yourself? How can you ALLOW yourself to balloon up that big?
There are plenty of valid and less-valid reasons, of course. Emotional eating is a big problem in a lot of people. People get into funks and start heading for the chocolate, cheesecake and marshmallow pies.
This just created a cycle. Get upset... eat alot of crap. Look in the mirror.. get upset.. eat more crap etc.
I've never really suffered from emotional eating. I did.. do.. eat while bored. I'll be bored and look for things to do.. so I'd grab a handful of chips or whatever.
At the same time, I didn't detest healthy food. I've always loved chicken, rice, vegetables.
250 lbs?? I didn't ask age. I don't think it MATTERS.
And this woman had been dieting on and off for a few years and had yo-yo'd that is.. taken some weight off and put it all back on.
Listen folks, dieting is NOT HARD! It's time-consuming, but not hard! If you think it's hard, you have the ABSOLUTE WRONG ATTITUDE and, chances are, you will fail and end off where you were or worse.
Attitude is everything.
First off... for those of you (and this seems to be ESPECIALLY women) who "need to lose 5 lbs. so I can get back into that swimsuit" or "lose 10 so I can look good for the school reunion." Don't bother, you'll fail. Or if you succeed to take the poundage off, you'll put it right back on again right afterwards, which in my book still means you've failed because you'll have to go back and do it again.
Dieting shouldn't be about vanity.. well, vanity alone in any case.
You can't lose pounds just to look good.
The only way you will succeed is to look towards more loftier goals: total physical fitness and good cardiovascular health.
Did you know your metabolism slows down a bit every year? Hence, if you never change your eating habits in 70 years, you'll still gain some poundage.
There are ways to fix this, of course... exercise. Metabolism is based on many many things... sex, age, background conditions (race, parentage etc.) and lean body weight.. that is.. the weight of your body that ISN'T Fat.
Guess which of those things YOU can fix?
That's right... just pumping iron for half an hour three or four days a week will increase your metabolsim. Muscle definately counts as lean mass. And it is NOT HARD to gain muscle.
And while you're in the gym, working on your muscles.. why don't you consider some cardio? There are so many ways to get your heart pumping...walk, jog, run, swim, bicycle, climb stairs or use the elliptical machine in the gym. Cardio work strengthens your heart, strengthens your lungs and makes you fitter. You'll be able to be one of those people who can walk up a flight of stairs without needing a few minutes to catch your breath. You'll be able to be one of those people on the court playing tennis or raquetball while the unfit people look enviously at you from inside.
You'll feel more alive than you can possibly imagine unless you've been there. Unless you've gone from Immobile to Mobile.
And while you are on the court, exercising, making yourself healthier and stronger and fitter, your body uses up calories and burns off fat.
And if all you're looking for is to lose some fat.. just eat foods with less calories. Put down the cheesecake and pick up some cottage cheese. Put down the ice cream and pick up some iced grapes.
There's no trick here, folks. This is the only way guaranteed to work 100% of the time. Exercise more, eat better.
It will take time and it may be frustrating at times, but you WILL see the difference. The pounds will come off. You'll feel fitter, more alive, more vibrant and the whole time you will be getting healthier and healthier.
Have you ever noticed how fit people get sick less than unfit people? There are reasons. Ever notice how that old man on the courts playing raquetball tends to have less problems with cholesterol levels than the old man on the couch watching TV?
And you need to do this for yourself. Don't do it because you think other people want you to be thin. Don't do this to get even with that boy who said he'd NEVER date a fat girl like you. Do it for yourself.. for your health and for your self.
Otherwise, you still fail. Because you WON'T keep the pounds off.
As Fred over at Phat Man
would say... the only secret to success is to live like a fit, healthy person who doesn't have the weight you want to lose. Me? I'm trying to live like a fit, healthy 200 lb. man. To get into the habits I hope to take with me when I finally reach 200: exercise, weight lifting and eating better.
That when when I finally reached 200.. there's no adjustment. I'll already be eating normally.. I'll already be exercising normally (Honestly, I'll probably cut down on the exercise a bit when I finally get to 200... go for half an hour of cardio a day instead of an hour. But.. we'll see. I'm not there yet.) And that is how you succeed... because getting there was pretty easy.. you ate and exercised.. and staying there is just as easy. Maybe easier because you're used to it.
Wow, this post got long.
Well.. I'll mention one more thing and call it quits.
I've given myself a new long term plan. I'm going to try to reach 250 by January 1st of next year. I may be able to reach it. I may not. But that's my new long term goal. I'm not TOO Far away.. only about 17 lbs.. and I have 6 weeks to do it. It'll be close one way or the other.
That's all. Have a good Thanksgiving!