Sunday, October 9, 2016

Ups and downs

I said a few years ago that I would like to use this space to help me lose weight by providing a virtual accountability partner, or several, as it were. Of course, I have described different things I have done, and it's been fun and all, but weight loss is an elusive bastard, and I'm pretty much starting over. This is going to be a rather long post, with lots of personal details (like numbers and whatnot,) so if you are uninterested, you may want to stop reading now. Also, don't make fun of me. I am fairly certain anyone who is taking the time to come here is not here to be mean, but just in case...I can delete with the best of them.

We're not going back all the way to the beginning; anyone who knows me knows I have struggled with my weight pretty much my entire life, except for a few brief years doing track in high school, and then the Army. It's really hard to be fat when you're at basic training. 

Anyway, we're going back 3 years, October of 2013. I hit my all time high weight of 295. It was one of those "holy crap!" moments - awfully close to a whole other century. I started walking more often - and I really noticed the extra shins would burn, like they were on fire, when I walked, the bottoms of my feet hurt terribly when I stood up after being sedentary, my knees were aching. But I walked, some. Then came the most effective weight loss strategy - my anxiety was ramping up again, and I started having panic attacks occasionally. That's 10 lbs gone in no time - it's amazing how intense anxiety destroys your appetite. 

No, I am not hoping I start having attacks again. I will stay happily fat.

Anywho, I started going to boot camp in April of 2014, lost some weight, gained some weight, lost some more. I've stayed mostly active since then, with a month here and there of lazy. All in all, I've only lost, in total, 25 lbs. 

And I've almost gained all of it back. Since March. Why is gaining so easy? They say, "You didn't put it on overnight..." They LIE! 

A few weeks ago, I realized my clothes were starting to fit kind of tightly, my knees were starting to ache again, my shins are burning when I walk. I stepped on the scale, which I actually hadn't done since June. I was up at 294.3 lbs. Well, crap!

Have I mentioned how much I hate my scale? It talks. And it is creepy. And sometimes, if we have lightening, or one of the cats jumps from the sink onto it, it will talk at night. "Hello. Are you ready?" Yeah, creepy as hell. 

That week, I started journaling my food intake again. I am following along with that Joyful Eating class, trying to really understand my hunger and fullness cues, because food is my downfall. And I refuse to treat it as an enemy. But I have a tendency to eat past fullness to stuffed, just because I'm bored, or I like the taste, or I am eating mindlessly. I've also stopped drinking pop, almost entirely. I'm not keeping it in the house, and I am not eating out often. I had some on Friday. It was good. I don't feel desperate to drink more. I may have kicked that particular addiction, so that's nice.  I've been working out 4 times a week, and trying to move more on the other days. 

Today, creepy scale chick told me I weigh 288.6. OK! That was motivating.

So. I know I've tried this before, but I am going to start again. I need to be accountable. So I'm going to start weighing in here again. I am going to keep up what I've started, and continue adding good habits. I am going to invite others to use me as an accountability partner, 'cuz I know I could use the kick in the butt. I am going to post this to Facebook, even though it is terribly uncomfortable, because more of you come here from there than anywhere else. 

That was awkward.

I know the scale is not the most important factor in health, and health is my foremost focus here, but here's the deal - I am more than twice the healthy weight for my height. There are simply too many problems that come from that much excess weight. I'm lucky - I'm still able to function and move and work out, but how much longer am I going to be able to keep that up? I already have problems with blood pressure and cholesterol, and I can only stave off the doctor for so long before he makes me start taking cholesterol meds. My allergies cause breathing issues, and those are much worse with the extra weight. And then there are the joints. Every so often they like to remind me that I am not getting any younger. Stupid joints. 

Anyway, I appreciate you cheering me on, and bearing with me as I do this. I promise, I will post other stuff, too, but I'm thinking Monday posts will be health stuff and weigh ins. 

A couple of years ago, I promised myself a new tattoo when I lose 100 lbs from my highest weight. (I allowed myself the semi-colon this year, even without the weight loss, because I felt strongly about the cause, but my next one has to be earned.) It's kind of a bummer, I was a lot closer earlier this year, but I guess I'm starting again. I want something involving a fairy reading a book under a tree. I can't draw to save my life, so someone else will have to help. So, once I hit 195, I get my tattoo. You guys should come with. It will be fantastic.

I may add in other rewards. I like presents. My first one will be when I hit 270, since that's where I climbed from. I don't know what. I'll ponder. Let me know if you have some good ideas - no food. 

Alrighty, thanks for hanging in there with me. We'll chat later. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016 head!

Monday night I was really tired and went to bed without taking my antidepressant. Yesterday did horrible things to my brain. Horrible. Starts with a feeling like your head is wrapped in something suffocating. Like that itchy insulation in the attic. Then come the icepick above the left eye headaches...for hours.  Then, and this is a blast, the brain zaps. Live wire, inside your brain. I felt a lot like this:

My point? This was after ONE missed dose. By accident. Do not go cold turkey, people.I went home last night, took my meds, and went to bed. I was asleep by 8PM, and slept until 4AM. I feel much better today, thank you.

What was good fun is that I spent the entire first half of the day running meetings with my head wrapped in insulation. I couldn't remember simple words, and my thoughts were like a bag of Scrabble tiles. I probably sounded like an idiot.

On to the good stuff...this is obviously me blogging, since one of my goals is to blog at least once a week during this 30 days. If you follow me on Instagram, I have posted a few of my checked off goals - got my mammogram on Friday. I put it off for over a year, basically out of fear - fear of pain, and fear of results. The pain was negligible, the results good. I did not take a picture, obvs, but I did take a pic of the certificate in the department, just so I had something to put on Instagram. I also walked with my friend Laura, who is lovely, and always an excellent person to chat with. Her dog is precious as well, and we got a great shot of ourselves with his tongue.

So many of my goals on here are ongoing things - journal all 30 days, complete Joyful eating program, meal plan and prep each week, no pop all 30 days...I am working on a number of these. Pop free 6 days now, I've been journaling:
These are part of my Joyful eating, and I feel I shouldn't post a clearer picture of them, as they are proprietary. I don't know that the developers of the program would care, but I do. But I have been using them every day.
 Sunday I planned meals for the week, made two weeks of green smoothies, and roasted veggies for lunches.
These are the Beginner's Luck smoothie from Simple Green Smoothies. They are not enough calories or protein for a meal, but they are tasty, and get a good, hefty serving of spinach into my day. I have them for breakfast with a piece of bread with peanut butter, or a bowl of cheerios.
I have been at boot camp 3 days this week thus far, and I will go the next 3 to get my 6 in a row. I have planned an excellent day for my friend Alison and me. I have drunk 100 oz of water every day this week; I really just need to record it. I have more than one day with 10,000 steps, but I'll save that for later.

The two I'm having the most trouble with are planning a weekend away with my husband and read Daring Greatly. Every time I come up with something for a specific weekend, I something else comes up. And I really can't get into Daring Greatly. I feel like I have the gist of it, and I only started it on Monday. And there are so many good books to read. My desire to accomplish a goal I've written down is warring with my "Life is to short to read bad books" mindset. Not that it is a bad book, but I feel like vulnerability is not an issue for me. I mean, I come on here and blab about my issues to my thousands (heehee) of readers. What could be more vulnerable than that? Of course, as Ms. Brown posits, oversharing can actually be a camouflage for putting one's true self out there. Perhaps, if I was to continue reading this book, I would discover what it is I am keeping hidden. Who knows?

I have work to do, so I must get back to it. I will continue sharing this with you. I am enjoying my list, and although I had a rather shockingly disappointing weigh-in this morning, I am trying to remind myself that it is an initial weigh in. Again. Ah, the pleasure of being an obese woman, trying to get healthy. It's a struggle my friends, but luckily I have all of you along with me for the ride.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Another month and a new challenge

Well, hey there hot stuff!
Yeah, another month down. I have a bad habit of not liking to admit when I am failing at something, and so I don't post at all, which really kind of defeats the purpose of blogging for accountability, doesn't it? But, it has been a month of not being so well-behaved. And while we all know that the brilliant Laurel Thatcher Ulrich once said "Well-behaved women seldom make history," I don't think she was referring to health and wellness. And eating mass amounts of ice cream, and skipping boot camp classes, and drinking pop, and just being gross. These behaviors are less likely to help me make history, and more likely to give me a heart attack, or, at the very least, land me on cholesterol medication.
So, another month, another challenge - and this one is kind of fun as it combines a list and my favorite social media, Instagram - #TheGoal30

I think the original idea, by @ariellesays, was 30 days, 30 non-scale goals, 1 goal per day - since September has 30 days, at least that's what I assume, but I read about it at, and she is applying her whole What You Can, When You Can philosophy, and I have some goals I'd really like to be cumulative, so there we are. Particularly the no pop, the journaling, and the Joyful Eating class, which I still haven't completed, and I want to. A lot of people made pretty lists - my handwriting is not fabulous, but I still decided to add it to my bullet journal, which I'm still using and loving, since I carry it with me. The goofy doodling is what I do when I can't come up with another item for the list, and I wanted to intersperse some of the health related goals with some other things, like do something with my Girl but not shopping, since that's always what she wants to do. Which is funny, since all she wants to do when we shop is buy more black shirts. Occasionally maroon.
You'll notice I added blog more and take more pictures, and I'm supposed to document this whole thing on instagram, so if you'd like to follow along, I'm @_missy_koeppel
I love my Instagramming. Much more than then Twittering, which is way too loud for my sensitive brain.
Speaking of Twittering, I just read Felicia Day's book, You're Never Weird On the Internet (Almost), and she is truly adorable and fun, and her poor anxious brain makes me want to hug her and tell her she's not alone, although she seems anxious like a type A personality, perfectionist, smart person anxious, instead of my anxiety, which stems more from...I have no idea what, low self-esteem, I guess.
Apparently I had more babbling to do that I thought, but I have to start working now, so we'll chat later. Make sure to kick me in the butt and remind me to keep updating these goals. Phew, it's warm in here...

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Almost a month later, and I'm feeling a bit better

Hi. It's been a busy three weeks, as summers often are. When my kids were smaller, and I was home with them, we used to have lists of fun things to do, and days where we didn't leave the house, and I really miss those days. I also had bucket lists - hikes I wanted to take them on and camping trips, and day trips...and now they are teenagers and have very little interest in waking up before noon, let alone going on a hike with me. I feel like I really missed the ball on that one, and uh-oh, here comes the mommy-guilt.

Anyway, busy, so I will condense the past 3 weeks into a brief list of of snippets to catch you all up. Far be it for me to allow you to miss out on even an instant of my life - that would be cruel!

1. Family - Reds games with A (don't get the hat o' nachos! They taste like sweaty socks!), family reunion in Columbus (so sweaty), birthday party for my twinlets, snuggles, visit with my dad and stepmom, shopping with my girl, and my boy is becoming a very decent cook!

2. Softball. Lots of it. Also volleyball. This is the last softball tournament of the season, and tryouts for next year are next week. Volleyball started 2 weeks ago, and she's happy to be back.

Here's a picture of the girl pitching. I didn't take it. 
3. Work. My boss left. This was heartbreaking, as she was the best boss I've ever had. I interviewed for her job, but only because I felt that was the next logical step. They did not hire me for the position, and I am...uncertain...about their selection.

4. With softball tournaments comes lots of reading...I have finished a lot of books this summer. Hey! I watch when she is up! Anyway, check my Goodreads page if you're interested. I am currently listening to 10% Happier by Dan Harris in the car, and I'm really liking it. (Reading other stuff, but I felt like this deserved an extra mention.)

5. Health - Started the August challenge this week. Boot camp twice, and I mowed the lawn yesterday. I also started over with the mindful eating class - the material is good, but I lost my focus the first time through - luckily, the material is mine to keep, and so is the Facebook group. I have had good days and bad days this past week, but I'm working it. I'm planning for boot camp 3 days next week, plus a walk. Also, my biceps are killing me today.

I think that sums it up nicely. It doesn't look like much, but between work and softball, that was a lot of time. Throw in a few book clubs...

Gotta get dressed. Softball tournament...Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Hello anxiety. It's been awhile.

Can't say I've missed you.
The anxiety, not you, dear readers.
It has been, what, 2 1/2 years since I felt this bad. So, let's examine...

I know my worst triggers - the people I love the most and who live with me, my family, and my thoughts on how I have failed them. I don't want to be more specific, as they would probably not appreciate it. I don't believe I can actually fix this, but my first, and most desired response is to run away and hide, which is not my most mature way to respond.

Ok, this has not exactly changed, but I've dealt with it more effectively over the past 2 years than I am right now.

I haven't been working out this summer. Barely at all. Like, 4 times since June 1. Maybe 5.
My caffeine intake has been astronomical.
I've been eating junk, and not sleeping well, at all.

That's not to say "I haven't been focusing on me." I certainly have. Probably more so than I should - book clubs and nights out, and fun with friends. Mayhaps I need to focus less on my fun and more on my health? The two certainly need not be exclusive - but perhaps a few less ice cream cones and a few more early morning workouts would be helpful.

this morning I woke up full fledge anxiety attack, shaking and nauseous. My ensuing conversation with one of my family members did not help that. I cut back the coffee to one cup to try to take the edge off the shake (cold turkey hurts too much.) Kept the breakfast small.

I still have this desperate desire to bolt out the door and run for the next two months.

I will work on it.

Sorry to be such a downer. Lots going on the past month - family in town, and lots of twin snuggles make me happy. Softball tournaments most weekends, and the girl is pretty awesome at it. Renn Faire last weekend, which is always fun, and I threw knives. New tattoo last week - it's a semi-colon, with style. I'm pleased with how it came out.

I got it with my book club. We told our server at the bar we went to after, and she was like, "oh, are they literary tattoos?" No, we just got them together. As my friend J says, the book club who gets tattooed together, stays together.

Alright, I need to get back to work. There is a lot going on here, too, but nothing concrete, so nothing to share. Although, the mourning doves are nesting again in the light fixture outside my door. Baby birds are exciting.

Wish me luck with the whole freaking out thing.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Quick thoughts before my road trip.

I was scrolling through my Instagram feed this morning, and came across a girl posing in her 10 year old prom dress, and telling one of those truly sad prom stories, something to the effect that she was asked to prom by her current boyfriend, Mr. Popular, she bought the dress, was all excited, and then heard that the guy intended to dump her and ditch her at prom for another girl. And that she had been hanging on to the dress all this time, with this dream that she would meet Mr. Right and they would dance the night away, and life would be sweet. She didn't talk about the fact that she looked damn good in the dress, that she has thousands of Instagram followers who she empowers and lifts up everyday, that the guy from that long ago prom could kiss her curvy white ass.

Now, I understand this may have been an instance of "see, I have those sad, I wish I was a princess with a prince" moments, too", but it didn't read that way to me. I read feelings of unworthiness and dejection in that post, and I wanted to wrap this 28 year old girl in my arms and tell her, "dude! wake up! you are fabulous! and you don't need any man to tell you that!" Phew, I'm glad I'm not 28 anymore.

My friend, we'll call her Jennifer, because I have 100 Jennifers in my life, and let's face it, Jennifers are some of the smartest people in the world; so, Jennifer says something wonderful every time I start to get down on myself about something - I'm a bad mom, I failed yet another diet, I missed boot camp last week, I'm lazy, blah blah blah. She has said it here, she has commented on Facebook, and, my favorite, she has grabbed my arm and yelled it at me in person, "Hey! Be nice to my friend!"

I love that. Because, I really try to be a good friend. I love my friends; they lift me up, make me want to be a better person, let me be me, even when I think I'm being annoying. And I try to say good things, and caring things to my friends. And, as I've reached my 4th decade, I've (finally) started to realize, these amazing, caring people wouldn't love an asshole.

Maybe I'm not thin and gorgeous, maybe I'm not as healthy as I want to be (although, I'm working), maybe I am not the mom I wish I was, and yes, I really wish I had finished my degree and maybe was writing a book or doing something amazing and world-changing right now.

Part of my job involves reading obituaries - I process memorial donations, and I pair the appropriate obituaries with the donations to make sure they are acknowledged correctly. It can be a little sad, of course, but often it makes me smile. I've read a lot of obituaries for people who lived long, beautiful, lives full of love and laughter. Their obituaries talk about their humor and their generosity of spirit, never how much money they had, or beautiful house, or their highest degree. They are people I wish I had the privilege of knowing. It makes me realize, even if I don't finish that degree, I can be that person that, at the end of my life, inspires someone to write about the fact that I made them smile. That I was full of love and kindness, with a bawdy sense of humor, and a huge "Read" list on Goodreads.

Your mission today? Go out and do a kindness for someone. And then,turn around and do a kindness for yourself. Tell yourself the things you tell your friends. Treat yourself like your best friend. And know, if I catch you saying something bad about yourself, I am going to yell at you, "Be nice to my friend!" Because I love you, and I don't love assholes.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Remember my dirty little secret?

You know, the dirty little secret right in front of my house, in plain sight of all, that I published here on the blog, and on Facebook?

You know, the beds in front of my house?
This is the first house I've lived in, since I was old enough to know anything about living in a house. I was pretty freaking excited to do stuff outside when I moved in here, and I did lots of stuff - but my thumb is not so green. In fact, it's pretty freaking brown - I can make it grow...and then it dies.
Then, I started working full time, and I really have never figured out how to make time work for me. 

I'm also rather lazy.

So things got out of hand. My brother and I (with a small amount of help from my son) started pulling weeds and digging up the beds about a month ago. I had a mountain of mulch delivered today, expecting to work on it this week...and just take a look at what I came home to:

heeheeheeheeheeheehee! I'm so happy!
My brother even got my kids to help! I came home from work and happily finished spreading to the dulcet tones of Licensed to Ill (the music any self-respecting landscaping homeowner landscapes to.) I'm fairly certain there was something horrible growing in there, as all of us have some itchy spots. The burning bushes and the lilac need trimming, and there is still a pear stump in the ground at the end, looks so nice!
Here, just in case you need to do any gangsta landscapin'...

Happy Tuesday!