Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I fell off the program into a keg of beer

But the damage was not too severe! ;-)

Did great at the party on Saturday evening -- had cucumber with fat free cream cheese and smoked salmon, drank sparingly, and finally had two piece of pizza. Not bad at all for a carb-up night.

BUT, no one was drinking the keg of beer we got -- everyone seemed to want wine. So, on Sunday, we had a huge lot of beer to get rid of. And a lazy Sunday to make that happen. So Sunday was beer-drinking but I was careful to not eat much knowing that I was having beer calories and we also did A LOT of walking and biking all over Venice (a big street festival was going on a few blocks from our house and we wandered around that off and on all day). Result? Damage yesterday morning wasn't TOO bad.

After I helped my mom pack for her move all day yesterday (my office was closed for Yom Kippur), last night we went to get the keg from our friend's house where we had the party and brought it back to our house (we had to return it today). I apparently took it as a personal challenge to make it as light as possible for DB to have to carry when he returned it today. Sigh...scale this morning wasn't horrible, but up.

I'll be ok...it was a really fun weekend. :-)

Friday, September 25, 2009

New Territory reached!

Just in time for pizza and beer party tomorrow night. :-(

But it felt really good to see that new low on the scale this morning. And, while I'm always less "good" on the weekends, I am going to TRY...harder than I did last weekend. I dodged a bullet there and I hope I can remember that when temptation comes knocking.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

My weird body

Today the scale is equal to the absolute lowest it has been since starting the Macro (right before we went on vacation to St. John, for ONE day, I was this weight). Can I have "lost" 8-plus pounds since Monday? It actually feels like "yes". I definitely FELT the 8 pounds on Monday. The results of getting back on the wagon this week are so dramatic that I am SURE that a lot was pre-period water. And those sugary desserts.

I've been thinking a lot about where I've been the past few months = in the same 5-ish pound range, never lower than just before our July vacation. It's been two months of maintenance -- even though the scale has gone down often, it has also gone up. I call it a rollercoaster, but it's really just maintenance.

It's funny: in July when I was this weight I felt very skinny; now, after two months in this neighborhood, the former skinny feels fat. Well, maybe not fat (I'm about 4 pounds from the "normal" range for my height according to BMI), but definitely not skinny. I'm pondering what this means for an ultimate REAL maintenance time. Will I constantly feel fat? The answer lies in my past experience: yes. I will always feel fat. :-(

Having said all that...I am ready for NEW TERRITORY. I'd like to see a number even a tenth of a pound less tomorrow. I still am saying no beer or pizza on Saturday night at our party -- trying to think of ways to treat myself while everyone else is indulging.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

I think it was less the food...

...and more the time of month. Period came full-on yesterday and this morning I am down to just 3 lbs. over Sat. weigh-in -- so I might get back to even by this weekend. I'm still less than last year at this time. But I have to get off this maintenance plateau and lose the final 10 I want to. It's easy to maintain in the range I am right now...but I think I can go lower without suffering too much! ;-)

As I mentioned yesterday, I'm pretty sure that exercise (or lack thereof) is a factor too. (To answer Vickie, DB is not exercising much lately -- has been having back problems.) I found a new yoga studio much closer to our house than others and with classes at a perfect time (7:30 pm) every weeknight. I am definitely checking that out SOON. I also finally bought rollerblades last night (along with all the "armor" -- knee, wrist, elbow pads and helmet). They were $30 on Craigs List and I love them. I may hate them after the first time I fall down (or if I can't figure out how to stop without running into things!), but so far, from rolling around the house last night, I think these are going to be really fun exercise! :-) Once DB's back is better he can go with me too -- he hasn't rollerbladed since he met me!

Having my annual mammogram today -- not fun, but necessary, of course! Also heading to my mom's tonight with a blow-up mattress -- she sold her bed yesterday (getting a new, smaller one for the new place).

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Bad food...or too much of a good thing?

I'm not sure which it was this weekend, but I literally gained almost EIGHT pounds from Saturday morning to Monday morning. That is not a typo. No wonder I didn't feel like blogging yesterday. I know I did not eat perfectly, but I truly do not think that EIGHT pounds is deserved. I definitely felt the weight though so it wasn't fake. My body constantly confounds me...

Saturday I had good breakfast, good snack (although probably after waiting too long -- 6 hours), then went out to friend's for equinox (sorry, not solstice...I'm learning!) celebration (and birthday since it was hers). I drank vodka (very safe, no carbs). We didn't have dinner until 10 or later so I needed a snack before and I ate what I thought was ok (particularly since it was carb-up night): cheese, some chips, some crab dip (2g carb per serving) and some guacamole (no carbs/serving). I felt kind of yucky in my tummy after that so when it came time to eat, I ate very little -- just some turkey and (this is probably the mistake) some of the casserole I brought. I made this casserole and it was very low-carb (broccoli, cheese, crackers, butter)...but VERY fatty.

Sunday morning...I was up 3+ pounds. We had leftover casserole for breakfast. Then salad for lunch. Then went to another potluck for dinner. I took the same casserole (didn't feel like being creative, but I did make a new one to take on Sunday!). I ate cheese and hummus dip on whole-grain chips (not ok since it wasn't carb-up night). Then, for dinner, I had some casserole and a sausage. Again, I thought I was being PRETTY low-carb. But was aware I was being FATTY.

After that potluck and fantastic equinox ritual at the Church of the Backyard, we went to meet my birthday friend for dessert (it was her actual b-day -- I had NO cake on Saturday night). We arrived at the restaurant where she and her hubby had dinner and there were two HUGE desserts on the table. I ate some. Definitely too much. And had non-vodka drinks (not ok). Monday morning...4 more pounds up.

Lessons from this:

1. Cheese, while low/no-carb, is not something I can eat freely.
2. Butter, while no-carb, is not something I can slather on things (during the week, I use light butter on my Ezekiel toast). The casserole, which is totally delicious, can be made with much less.
3. Sugary desserts -- NO NO, HELEN!!
4. Low-carb/high fat is not workable.

I'm down 3 of the 8 pounds today and more will be gone soon, but I totally sabotaged my going into new weight territory this week with my behavior this weekend. And DB (who I'm starting to call Anorexia Boy...not nice, I know) barely ate or drank anything Saturday or Sunday night. I guess he gets to have pizza and beer at our post-Burning Man party this coming Saturday. I DO NOT. :-(

Friday, September 18, 2009

Back to weight loss...and blogging about it!

Buckling down this week and finally letting go of "it's vacation, I can be a little bad" mentality worked. As of this morning, I am now just a few tenths of a pound above my absolute lowest ever since starting the Macro. I am planning to get more of the weight off before our NEXT vacation (going to NYC for the first week of November to celebrate my mom's 80th birthday). Go me!

It's still a struggle not to get frustrated that DB can eat a milkshake and an ice cream (one day this week) and is closing in on 30 pounds off while I have been nearly perfect and struggling to get back to my 20 pounds off (yes, I'm there now). It takes a lot of deep breaths...and denial. ;-)

My sister is going on the Macro next week...she doesn't have a lot to lose, but has been struggling with how she eats. And another friend started this week. I guess my and DB's results are a good advertisement for this plan! I honestly believe it's a really good basis for long-term for me.

My new assistant started the day I got back from Burning Man last week and (at least so far) I am very pleased. She has had to learn virtually everything from scratch and is making great progress. This reduces my stress level A LOT.

Tomorrow I'm going over to my mom's to help box up some stuff for her move (she moves into assisted living two weeks from today and is very excited -- it will be good for me too -- while her place will still be about the same distance from my house, 30 minutes, it will be only 5 minutes from my office so getting to her will be a lot easier). Then tomorrow night I'm going to my Wiccan friend's solstice celebration/birthday party in the garden where I worked a lot this summer. Sunday is another solstice celebration with some pagan friends. Lots of potluck eating this weekend! ;-)

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Burning Man Photos

Kind of in order...word narrative in post below...

Friday, September 11, 2009

Thanks for your patience...I'm baaaaack!

Things have been so busy since we got back that this is the first I've had a chance to write ANYTHING. Photos will take longer...we took a lot...and lots of video too! DB is culling through it all right now (we spent the past two nights at home just watching them) so I'll post some photos at some point. We both took cameras this time so more photos!

In the meantime, I'm very pleased to say that I gained WAY less on this vacation than on our trip to St. John! 6 pounds and 4 of those are already gone. :-) I love how getting back on the Crack/Macro wagon really mitigates the damage quickly. :-) We ate and drank a lot less than we have in prior years -- I also made sure that we took a lot more protein and a lot less carbs to eat. That worked. Every morning DB made me a yummy big proteiny breakfast -- usually bacon, egg substitute, some feta cheese and sometimes some veggies in the scramble. It was a hearty breakfast and I noticed that I really didn't get hungry the whole rest of the day! We snacked on nuts (small quantities) and canned veggies rather than a lot of chips (we did take tortilla chips, but ate about half of what we took). Anyway, I am proud of us...DB gained only 5 pounds too. :-)

Sooo...here's the narrative of our fun trip:

We dyed our hair on Saturday night before we left with Manic Panic product (semi-permanent). We had no idea how it would come out or how long it would last -- they say it lasts longer if you pre-process your hair (bleach) and neither of us wanted to do that -- way too permanent! DB dyed his hair (and his half-beard -- you'll have to see photos to appreciate this!) bright purple; I dyed my hair bright red. It was fun, but very messy! My bathroom looked like a major bloodbath...but I got it all out...mostly... ;-) DB's color washed out as soon as he used shampoo on Tuesday night (and he had gotten a special "protect your color" shampoo)...mine lasted all week because I didn't use shampoo until Friday night (I would rinse my hair with water, no shampoo). When I did use shampoo, it was the "no-rinse" kind that I take to Burning Man and it seemed to be less harsh with washing out the color. I still have a few streaks today after a full week of washing with regular shampoo...and it looks really good with my natural color. BUT I don't think I'll do this regularly -- no way would I not shampoo for a week in "real" life!! ;-)

We left town about 7:30 am on Sunday morning -- in our trusty Burner van, Vera, and pulling a small U-Haul trailer (we rented that this year because it was WAY easier to pack with more space -- usually takes us a long time to cram everything into Vera -- this was GREAT). We had to go a little slower than usual so it took us about 12 hours to get to our hotel in Reno (including stopping for groceries). It was a long day and DB (who did all the driving) was pretty cranky. I was so excited that I tried to maintain a happy mood the whole day...despite the fact I still had a cold (which I had gotten the Wednesday before we left...and which I STILL HAVE).

Monday morning (August 31) we got up early and headed out of Reno around 7 am. Stopped for breakfast and gas and we were on our way! Got to the playa about 10 am and got to our spot in our village (Alternative Energy Zone) by 11 am. This is the earliest we've ever gotten there so this was great! I was feeling pretty sick -- runny nose, cough, etc. -- but we had a lot of work to do! While hugging and saying hi to all our friends who were already there, we figured out how to configure our camp, put Vera and the trailer as wind blocks, set up our dome, tent (dressing room) and hexayurt (sleeping pod). I think we finished around 7 pm...hard working day in hot sun, but it looked really good when we finished and we were HOME. :-)

Monday night we didn't have hot water for shower (hadn't set up the solar shower yet), so we washed off with baby wipes, changed clothes and headed out on our bikes to see if we could find a friend who had invited us to a party. It was very windy and dusty and hard to see much so we didn't stay out long...we both crawled into our bed by 10:30 that night...

Tuesday (and every day for the rest of the week through Saturday), we got up around 9 and did our usual routine: iced mochas at the Center Camp Cafe (they only sell coffee and ice there), breakfast cooked by DB, I get water out of the cooler to put in our solar shower, then it's time for me to be the Tour Guide! When I was a little girl, I dreamed of being a tour guide...and at Burning Man my dream comes true! This year I took the laboring oar and organized the tours of our village -- at 11 am each day, I took people around to see all the great alternative energy projects that everyone in our village brought. This is so fun and inspiring!!! We had tons of solar energy, wind energy, etc. People run lights, swamp coolers, ovens and so much more on renewable resources and we also work hard to conserve (using both passive and active means) - it's amazing how well you can live while using less. We even had a villager who ground his own wheat and baked bread using solar energy!! So very much fun!!

Since I was feeling under the weather all week, after the tours each day (they lasted until noon or 12:30), I would grab a drink and lie back in my lounge chair and READ for hours. It was wonderful. I got through 2 books. Sometimes DB and I would head out to the playa to see art projects for an hour or two. Sometimes not. DB played several times with the Burning Band (marching band) and I went to see him a couple of times, but mostly he just banged his drums with them and had a ball. It felt really good not to push myself too hard.

After dinner each night, DB and I would go out for a few hours...then I would come home around 10 or 10:30, sit on our "playa bench" (like a park bench), have a beer, look at the lights and stars (one night I saw a shooting star SO bright!), then go to bed. I literally did not go to bed later than 11 pm any night except one until Saturday night!! DB would usually go back out until 2 or 3...that's much more his thing than mine. We both were happy!! In our fifth year there, I think we finally found the balance where we were taking care of ourselves and each other in just the right way. Yay! :-)

I had fantastic outfits this year -- several tutus, some beautiful bustiers and DB surprised me with a lighted-up white fake fur boa!!! This was worn EVERY night, needless to say! ;-)

The art was not the best ever, but there were fun things: the base of the Man was huge (great fire the night he burned), the temple was the most beautiful ever (looked like a lotus -- it's amazing when they burn it the night after The Man -- Man Burn Night is a loud and crazy part -- temple burn night is quiet -- thousands of people sit in silence while it burns -- this is my favorite thing), there was a big silver rocket and (best of all) there was a huge slide that was about 4 stories high made from Astroturf. On Thursday night (after we had a really fun and delicious potluck dinner in our camp -- DB and I made a gingerbread house!), I was so excited to try it! We went out after dark and I crawled up and slid down on a garbage can lid -- sooooo fun, but...I got a huge Astroturf burn on my back. OUCHY. Major ouchy. (It's still healing...I have a huge bandage on my back and antibiotic cream at all times.) I couldn't wait to go back though...with more protective clothes on! ;-)

Temple Burn Night (Sunday) was when I got back to The Slide -- completely covered up. ;-) After the temple burn, DB and I headed to The Slide and went down it together on our sleeping bag -- SO FUN!! Then we headed far out on the playa where it was quiet and laid there looking at the stars and cuddling. It was a perfect night. We had worked hard all that day breaking down camp so we were ready for bed a little after midnight...and had to get up at 4:30 am to get on the road (leaving the city, Exodus, is rough -- 45,000 people leaving at close to the same time -- sometimes it takes 3 hours to go 2 miles).

We got up at 4:30, broke down the hexayurt (the last thing to do), got it and our mattress and sleeping bag into the trailer and were on the road by 5:30. We were very pleased to get to the pavement (2-3 miles) in about 1/2 hour. We were in Reno by 8:30 for breakfast. Stopped at a Walmart for some supplies to help my ouchy back, then were to our hotel in the Eastern Sierras by 11 am. We took an hour-long shower, and were down for a nap by 2 pm. Ahhhhhhh! Got up at about 4:30, gambled a little in the casino, had a yummy dinner, then were asleep by 9 pm. Ahhhhhh...

On Tuesday, we got up early and, after a hearty breakfast, were on the road by 9:45. We got home about 6 pm...unpacked the trailer, parked it and Vera on the street, went out to dinner and did a little computer work before bed.

I'm still recovering but it was the Best. Burning Man. EVER. :-)

P.S. I'm sure I'm forgetting things...will amplify when I post photos.