The Phoenix Journey

A woman's attempt to positive lifestyle changes.

Ugh…Wagon falling…CRASH!!! January 16, 2011

Filed under: Door Openings... — sunshineteach79 @ 2:50 pm
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So, I’ve fallen off the wagon this week.  Here are a couple of conversations that occured with my trainer and doctor this weekend.

Mike says:

What do u think the reason is u fall off after a month?  Impatient, bored, lack of faith, etc…..The nice part about having a persistant and annoying wellness team like us by your side is we won’t let you fall off!!!

I know we were talking about it the other night, but try to answer the ‘why’ for the decrease in motivation… we said, the barrier might be the uncertainty in the program moving forward.


Dr. B says:

Agreed cause this time was gonna be the “different” last time.  In order for that to happen, you have to know why the failures didn’t work.  It’s like a recipe that didn’t work out – you gotta look at the ingredients and the processing steps and analyze what was the factor that kept it from working.


I say:

You might run out of room on your iphones…it’s long!

I think this all stems pretty deep and there are several roots to the issue I think.  All of them intertwined.

1) lack of my own faith in actually completing this.  Fear of seeing who that new person might be?  Comfortability in some sense of where I am.  Fear of the unknown.

2)  When I was in high school and dropped a lot of weight (down to 123), I still wasn’t able to get men interested in me.  And while a guy’s attention shouldn’t be the carrot stick, it kinda is when you grow up with a family of mother and father.  The two are great friends and companions.  Something I’ve not yet experienced, even when I was married (luckily that only lasted a short period of time for several reasons).  Not to mention the desire to have children with someone.  (See #3)

3) Mom was my rock, she was the one that helped me trudge through all the mud.  I left for college, not really realizing how important she was to me and how much I needed her, I would eat whatever, drink whatever, and not really think about the consequences.  I think it was apart of being 18 and having pure freedom.  Which then started to spiral when I met my exhusband who was a larger guy and ate a lot.  I would pick up his bad habits and just try and keep up with him as far as food went.  The men that I had relationships with after him were mostly bigger guys.  And I believe that stems from the comment my father made while I was in high school, that good looking guys don’t like bigger girls.  (Is that really true?  I’m not sure…I believe it because it was said to me…and I’ve had maybe one man that Ive dated since my marrage that was in better shape than myself.)

4)  Since mom died, I feel like I’ve lost myself.  I have no idea who I am anymore, not really sure what I really enjoy anymore.  Fear of letting people into my life for the fear of them leaving me in some way shape or form.  I’d rather push people away than have them leave me.  I used to be a “social butterfly” but I’ve become more of a recluse over the years.  Which kind of scares me in a way.

I have talked to dad, and the reason why he didn’t really mention me going back in Feburary was because he was wanting me to try a month on my own to see if I could do that.  I explained to him that I’m not ready to do that at this point.  He’s agreed then to help out for another 12 sessions, but after that we need to really sit down and talk.  He said he knew that I would need to see you guys for awhile and this first 12 weeks wasn’t going to get me where I need to be.  I also mentioned to him that we were going to talk to my insurance company to see if that would help out at all, and explained that most times insurance companies don’t really help with this kinda a thing.  So he does understand that the insurance isn’t a definate thing, but I would still like to try and see what they say.

He’s made great progress in trying to understand the magnatue of my weight issue and how much emotional baggage there is that comes with it.  He has gone from telling me I need to lose weight and saying negative things to understanding the issue.

Workout plan:  DDR and a couple rounds of the workout we did on Monday.  (I also found my Bender ball, so the sitted twists will a go!)  Also, I have this Monday off, if you have anything in the morning can I switch the 4:00 to something earlier?


Dr. B says:

1) lack of faith in yourself – ok, so that’s the problem related to a lot of things.  Weight loss is no different. Good thing you’re not depending solely on yourself anymore.
2) the carrot isn’t necessarily male attention, but attention and love in general.  Basic human need – no reason you should be any different or feel a need to apologize for it.
3) relationships – the comment is true if you make it be true.  I’ve seen people madly in love with people who were ugly, mentally disabled, fat, stupid, disfigured, the list goes on and on. Real love really doesn’t care.  Somewhere there is someone who will love YOU, regardless of size or condition (which changes over time.  Real love can withstand aging, disease and bad luck.)
4) “better to have loved and lost then never to have loved at all” – not sure.  Probably not, loving and losing (which is inevitable) is really painful.  I think a lot of us would prefer to never love at all, but the resulting loneliness and isolation is at war with our intrinsic human nature.  Also, it’s probably impossible to turn off the love spigot completely and permanently.  Inevitably something or someone breaks through, and we either find ourselves caring more than we want and fearing the consequences, or loving unhealthily in an effort to protect ourselves (unhealthy relationships).  We’ve all done it – both the unhealthy self-damaging relationships, and the pushing away others in an attempt to fix the problem and prevent new ones.  The question is – is that the life you want?  Probably not, or it would have been enough for you and you would have been happy with it.
I think what you may be trying to do here is find yourself and the ability to live the life you’ve been given openly, honestly and with the courage to face it head on.  People are always seeking this, but it can be hard to realize it.  We tell ourselves that we’ll find what we’re looking for when we lose weight or find a committed relationship or get another degree or promotion or earn more, not realizing that those factors are merely a small part of the picture.  The goal achievements are never enough if we don’t attend to the big picture.  But courage, faith and the ability to trust intelligently while taking care of ourselves – these are not innate skills, nor easily learned.  I think you are very brave for doing this, and can tell you that when we learn to join hands and work together to support each other, there is nothing beyond the reach of our human capacity.


Mike says:

Calories still looked good! Nice job with the awareness and reflection on the email u sent answering the barrier ??’s.  I think just taking the time to answer is a huge first step to NOT letting it be a barrier moving forward! We’ll discuss more 2morrow.
Make sure to rest up tonight….HEFTY workout agenda planned :p u don’t have to walk anywhere tuesday, do u?? J/k 🙂
I say:
HA HA HA…you’re too funny.  You’re not just kidding.  And yes I do have walking to do on Tuesday, and Wednesday!  🙂

So, today was the playoff game for the Bears. Football Sundays were always typical nachos and buffalo wings days.  I’ve not had any wings all season long, so I splurged today and had 5 of them.  I know they aren’t the healthiest of choices.  Nor was the Portillos (but damn that hotdog was good).  Sometimes some nostalgia is needed.   As we have mentioned before food, family, social events kinda all go together and I guess I’m kind of missing the social aspect?
I’ve kind of limited my socialization while I try and get a handle on this new way of life thing.  The progress has been good, but it’s time to buckle up and continue on.  I need to find my support system.  There are very few people that I trust in my life.  Pretty much my dad, and off of yesterday’s email the lack of trust comes from the wall that I put up.  I’ve also looked at myself as pretty independent so my reliance on others to get me through tough time, pretty much was myself. I’m not sure how I would or could put trust into others, as I know that it takes a “village to raise a child”, and the benefits of that moto.  Still lots to think about.


So Grateful… January 13, 2011

Filed under: Door Openings... — sunshineteach79 @ 9:16 pm
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What a day today was!  I confessed to my trainer and doctor that I ate 4 donuts yesterday in reponse to the possible tax increase.  Having just bought my home last March, and still having student loans…the paycheck gets used very quickly.  The state of IL now wants to take an addtional money out of my paycheck.  They are increasing the income tax rate by 66%.  WHOA!  For those that don’t live in this state…be grateful.


This topic of discussion then turned to figuring out what our sessions are going to look like after Jan. 31st (when my initial 12 sessions end).  I explained to them that I personally don’t have the funds to keep going and that the only way that I could possible continue is if dad were to help out.   Dad and I had a conversation on Monday, and it didn’t seem as though he would be up for funding the next round.  We discussed why he might have said what he did.  He didn’t end up getting ill or hurt, but I didn’t think he was expecting to cough up more money.  Fastforward to this evening.  I always call him on my way home from working out with Dr. B and Mike.  I feel like its important to share my progress with him.  So we were talking and the topic of my sessions came up, and the conversation we had on Monday was the way it was because he was hoping to have me go through Feburary alone to see if I could make it (I personally don’t think I could, it would be very difficult for me to stay on the wagon.)    So I think we are going to coninute working.


What chokes me up is that, for a man who’s not been very endearing through my childhood and into my early adulthood, my father has come around or maybe I’ve come around to realize that he’s one of the best people EVER.  I know that hes always wanted the best for me, but when he says how proud he is of me for deciding to take on this journey I can’t help but sob.  He understands that food can be an addiction just as smoking or alcohol is.  I think after telling him my donut story from yesterday, he realizes that there are certain triggers that can set a food addict back into bad habits.  While I didn’t binge today and got myself back on track rather quickly, the temptation was great to just eat all the crap that I could.  My way of thinking has changed, and my decision to discuss this incident with Mike and Dr. B has shown progress.  Prior to working with them, I probably would have continued my binge through the weekend and wouldn’t have told anyone about it.

I am eternally grateful for these three people that have been in my life.  Thanks to them I have been learning who I am, and who I want to be again.  Thank you dad, Dr. B and Mike.  🙂


Biggest Loser January 11, 2011

Filed under: Door Openings... — sunshineteach79 @ 8:41 pm
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I’m writing this because as I watch the Biggest Loser this evening, one of the “unknowns” was to ask to look in the mirror and identify what makes him…him.  His response resonated with me in that he didn’t know who he was.  He didn’t know how his choices formed him into this being he is today.  This is something I’ve been asking myself over the past several weeks, of who am I.  What do I really enjoy? To be honest I have no idea who I am anymore.   I guess as I progress with this journey I will begin to know the new me.  My doctor once said, “How can you have faith in someone you’ve never met?”  I’ve made such progress since she made that statement about two months ago.  I have more faith in myself, and learning that my body will actually do what I ask it to do.  For goodness sake, I ran for 12 minutes yesterday!  REALLY!

My doctor really is inspirational.  Yesterday as I was preparing to run AGAIN, after running and weight training, we were talking about my weight and how I feel that I’m an instant gratification type.  I really want the weight drop fast, and I want to fit into cute clothes again.  She said, if that I was in fact an instant gratification type, I would have quit two weeks ago.  That means a lot to me because she’s right.  If I really was into losing the weight fast, I would have given up long ago.

Another comment that was made on BL was, when the ranch team mentioned failing and I sat here saying out loud, you never fail on this adventure unless you stop the journey.  As long as you keep trying, you won’t fail.  We each have our own path and the rate at which we progress on that path is determined by our willingness.  You’ll never fail if you keep walking the path.


Keep on trekin’


Scared… January 10, 2011

Filed under: The Hard Work — sunshineteach79 @ 7:50 pm
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So I have about three more sessions with my persronal trainer before my 12 sessions are up.  I’m growing anxious as that day approaches, because I don’t think I’m ready to be doing this on my own.  I like having accountability, a place to send my thoughts, my meal plans, my daily caloric intake, and a place where I can actually workout to my fullest potential.  I leave there dripping in sweat, and feeling amazing (even in my legs are a little wobbley after running and doing lunges).  I’m worried that if I try and step out on my own, Im going to fall flat on my face (as I’ve done in the past…and I really dont want to).  I’ve lost about 8 pounds since I’ve began this journey, and there is a lot more work to do.

Mike and I were talking about the progress that I’ve made and there are really some great things going on that I should be extremly proud of, and I AM!  Tonight I ran for a total of 12 minutes.  5 minutes non stop at 4.o, then intervals, one minute 2.5, one minute 4.0, one minute 2.5, one minute 4.0, one minute 2.5, one minute 4.5, one minute 2.5, and one minute 5.o (wholy hell that was hard).  Then we did some strength training (with lots of lunges)…then when it was over I said I wanna run again (WHAT THE HELL AM I TALKING ABOUT, I NEVER NEVER NEVER RUN!!!!) and ran for another 3 minutes at 4.0

When I had one of my first boxing sessions, I left feeling like my lungs were on fire.  That’s not happening so much anymore (meaning my airways are opening up and processing the oxygen better).  I’m very excited about this, and had Mike not brought it up today, I would have forgotten about this milestone.  I’m also feeling better about myself, my confidence has increased just a tad (still a ways to go on that too).  I have that nothings going to hold me back feeling when I enter that office.  I get full of aderniline and the Doc even said today, “We might have to give her some valuim today”  (If you were to know my doctor, she’s got a sense of humor that’s rather sarcasic…a good fit for me!  🙂  )


Anyways, I just needed to vent my frustration or being scared that I might not be able to do the rest of the journey on my own.  Let’s pray that I continue doing what I am.


Update… January 9, 2011

Filed under: Door Openings... — sunshineteach79 @ 6:28 pm
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So it’s been awhile since I’ve written anything.   It’s been an interesting week that’s for sure.  I started back at work this week, and keeping up with the working out left me feeling exhausted by Friday night.  On Monday there was some impromptu boxing that occurred because I opened my big mouth (see Talkin Smack).  I pretty much held the pads for my doctor to unleash her furry against my arms, shoulders, and neck.  That woman can pack a wallop.  I wouldn’t want to cross her in fear of getting beat down.  Anyways…by Wednesday I could barely move my neck.  Luckily I had a chiropractor appointment, and my massage therapist had a cancellation afterward…so I ended up with a 90 minute massage…YAAAHOOOOOO!  It was fabulous.

I am feeling much better, but I’ve also been doing stretches in order to keep the muscles from spasming.  The sooner this subsides the less headaches I’ll have.  I’ve been stretching in the car, at work, in the grocery store.  I’m sure people have looked at me funny.  Oh well.

I just spent my afternoon cooking.  COOKING!  I’m exhausted.  I made a homemade minetrone soup from the Moosewood Restaurant cookbook, and a chicken hash from a Weight Watchers cookbook.  Both look pretty good.  I didn’t have either of them for dinner tonight.  So I also made a hamburger (really homemade ones are sooooooooooo much better than McDonalds!).  In addition, I also prepared my meals for tomorrow.  One of them being a chicken salad sandwich.  I switched things up by making the dressing of the chicken salad into a honey mustard.  Should be delicious on my multigrain bread.

It’s been fun to keep track of my calories and how much of a difference there is between eating fast food all the time vs. making my own meals.  My trainer said I should keep my caloric intake under 1500 calories a day…and well…Im usually eating between 1200 and 1300.  When I was eating fast food on an almost daily basis, I was pretty close to 2000 calories a day (no wonder I gained so much weight).  According to my scale here at home, I’ve lost 7 pounds since the beginning of December.

So, that’s great news!  I’ve very proud of myself for choosing this path.  It hasn’t been easy and I’ve been working my tush off in trying to make sure I eat meals that I prepare myself.  While I haven’t gone completely organic or vegetarian, both appeal to me in some respects.  I don’t believe that I would ever go 100% vegetarian, I love beef too much.  (Part of being a mid-westerner.)

Oh!  Another thing, I tried drinking Diet Coke yesterday…and it didn’t even taste good.  I used to drink about 5-6 cans a day, and I can’t even finish one in a day.    I am preferring water.  🙂


That’s all for tonight.  Going to finish cleaning up and getting ready to head back to work tomorrow.  Hope y’all had a good weekend.


Talking Smack… January 3, 2011

Filed under: The Hard Work — sunshineteach79 @ 7:59 pm
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So today I met up with Mike…and I thought today was just going to be a normal training session day where he and I just worked out.  Well…through talking with Mike and Dr. B, I got her to join in too and we boxed.  I was kind of talking smack and feeling confident when I walked in today.  These are a group of people who I feel comfortable with joking around with sarcastically.  Well needless to say they pushed me to my limit today.

First off, I have to realize that once I get into their office…a switch turns on and I’m ready!  Ambitious, determined, excited, motivated.  It fascinates me really.  It takes me about an hour to drive from work to their office, so while driving I’m thinking what todays session was going to be like.  Feeling like I didn’t really want to work out.  Primarily due to the fact that after Thursday’s discussion I pretty much became depressed.  On top of all that we started back at work today, so I was woken up by my 5:20 AM alarm.  Needless to say, waking up this morning was a bitch!

I hop on the treadmill for my usual warm up, and Mike and I are talking about doing some jogging.  Sure…I was all about it…lets go!  Even before I got a little walking in to warm up the muscles, I was ready!  However he wanted me to walk for 5…so at five we cranked her up to the 4.0 mph and 1% incline….and then I was off!  Felt great…nice and steady…right…left…right…left…right…left (I really wish they would put a picture of the tropics up in front of the treadmill…a thought I always think while I’m jogging there).  I ran for 3 minutes which was double the time I ran the week prior.  AWESOME!  I actually had more in me, but Dr. B was changing and we were going to box…and did we box.  I became dizzy, and ready to puke (but didn’t).  I was pushed to the limit today that’s for damn sure.  I feel great…GREAT…GREAT!  I am moving upward and onward to my success.

Dr. B and I also had a little chat.  She told me that she was once in my shoes…and thought that she couldn’t do it.  I explained to her, that I look at it from a naive point of view.  I don’t really tell myself I can or can’t do it.  That way no expectations for failure are set.  I’m just doing…and here I am…losing weight…building endurance…and feeling great!

I’ll take it!

With that, good night y’all, time to rest this body.


BREAKTHROUGH!!! January 2, 2011

Filed under: The Hard Work — sunshineteach79 @ 11:08 am

Alright, so for the past month I’ve been maintaining my weight.  Pretty much stuck in the same spot.  Well…after last week’s lil breakthrough, there has been a weight loss!  A WEIGHT LOSS!!!  Physically and emotionally.  Hallelujah.  Not only did I walk out of their office on Thursday feeling so much better.  (I think crying is a great thing to do for all people!)  But since Thursday I went down 3.5 pounds.  How the hell does that happen?!?  Needless to say, this morning was a surprise.  I’m giddy with excitement and motivation.


Just needed to share this with the world!