The Recovering Pessimist

Helping pessimists see the bright side of life without losing their "half empty" roots.

Back to Center: Update 2.5

Nov
03

The Recovering Pessimist: Back to Center Update 2.5 -- My arch nemesis, sugar, and how I prevailed. | www.therecoveringpessimist.me #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimistIt’s been a year since my last update. I apologize for the delay. Life happened and I slowly started gaining all the weight I lost back. I got discouraged and began embracing sugar again.

Totally fell off the wagon.

I try not to eat a lot of sugar. However, my weakness has always been sugary drinks. I still don’t drink soda (too much of a trigger), but I was drinking juices and sweet tea like crazy.

Yeah, it tasted good, but my stomach was getting bigger by the day.

Weight tends to accumulate in my stomach and boobs. While having big boobs is mostly a blessing, excessive belly fat is not. Especially when diabetes runs in my family. So when  my weight slowly began to creep up on the scale, I had to pull my shit together.

It was time to cut the sugar, specifically the sugary drinks. I drank my last glass of lemonade around the beginning of October. Using MyFitnessPal to document my weight at that time, I’ve been weighing myself regularly. Check out my progress in the chart below:

Weight Nov 2013-Nov 2014

 

Insane right? Especially when you see the drastic increase from this time last year. My current goal is to reach 160 pounds. Once I get there, I will make my next goal. I haven’t started exercising yet. Focusing on kicking this sugar habit is my main priority.

[bctt tweet=”Sugar, I hate you. Sincerely, Me”]

 

Updated March 4, 2016

 

Back to Center

Oct
31

From April-July of 2011 I dealt with high blood pressure as a result of  bad eating habits. My option for resolving this issue was a lifestyle change because medication wasn’t an option. I ate my way into this predicament and I will eat/exercise my way out of it. In mid-July, I started the first of several lifestyle changes. Better habits, better me. In order for those habits to stick, I need to gradually work towards the goal versus stopping cold turkey. I wanted to share what I’ve accomplished on this journey and perhaps someone will get inspired to begin a lifestyle change of their own.

With that out of the way, here are the five changes I’ve made to my lifestyle thus far:

One: Eliminate Soda

I used to drink at least one soda each day. I craved soda. As a baby step towards elimination, I would have a soda every other day or every couple of days. Over time, my infrequent consumption of soda led to not craving it period. Success!

Two: Track Progress

I downloaded MyFitnessPal, a food journal app, to my phone. MyFitnessPal allows me to log my meals, water intake, and exercise. It also allows me to record weight and measurements. A genius way to keep myself accountable.

Three: Hello Water, Goodbye Juice

Perhaps years of sugary beverages stunted my taste buds, but I hated the taste of water. For someone who rarely drank water, I started drinking about three glasses of water a day. As that became routine, I increased my water intake to at least eight glasses a day.

When I started drinking water regularly, I slowly decreased the amount of juice I consumed. If I wanted juice, I cut it in half with water. Now, when I want a glass of juice, I aim to get a single size serving versus a full container. I’m too afraid I’ll backslide down the sugary mountain.

Fourth: Red Meat

I loved steak. Ate it all the time. At some point, I noticed how sluggish and heavy I felt after eating it. Not a good feeling by the way. I began incorporating chicken and turkey into my diet while lowering my consumption of red meat. Now, I rarely eat red meat.

Fifth: Exercise

Exercise is the last on this list because I’m still working on making it a habit. If I had started exercising earlier, my eating habits would have changed. I downloaded Workout Trainer, a fitness app, to my phone to keep me accountable. Workout Trainer has workouts and fitness programs that I can choose from. The app calculates calories burned so I can plug them into MyFitnessPal. Right now I’m a fan of short, intense workouts at least 3 days a week.

A year later, I look back and I’m proud. So far, I’ve lost about 17 pounds. Yes, the weight loss is awesome, but I’m more concerned with how I lost that weight. While I’ve gained a couple of pounds back, I’ve managed to create and stick with habits that have improved my overall health. My blood pressure is normal now. I don’t feel sluggish and I don’t get out of breath when walking long distances. There are some other things I want to work on, but I need to get the major goals accomplished before I do that. Doing too much could result in a setback that I don’t need.

Getting back to center feels damn good.

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