Thursday, March 31, 2011

Exercise or Exorcise

I hate to admit it but I really don't like to exercise. My DH is always saying let's go for a bike ride (oh that seat hurts) or let's go on a hike (there may be bugs or snakes). If you saw my reaction, you would think that he was performing an exorcism, attempting to pull the evil exercise spirit out of me. Just kidding..., kinda.

I know that I need to move more (hey I did move furniture all around that one day). I know I am really really out of shape - I did 5 sit-ups last night (yes I said 5), I saw a video of with a big ball passed from hands to knees, down, back up and get the ball back to your hands again from a laying down position and thought that it looked like something I could do. IT HURT TO LAUGH ALL DAY TODAY! Okay, I can't believe that I just wrote that.

I do love to walk. One problem though, last year I wore Crocs all the time and have almost ruined my feet. I now have Plantar Fasciitis and it is painful. I am telling you now, if you wear Crocs, only wear them occasionally, as in for slippers around the house. The doctor and the shoe store owner told me that they are seeing many people with problem feet because of Crocs.

I have started lifting some 5 pound weights when I am watching television. Now that the snow is almost completely melted, I may start walking some. Oh oh, I think I just heard a new mini goal. Starting on Sunday, I will walk at least 15 minutes 3 days a week. I will replace the battery in my pedometer and start tracking my steps and start setting some goals around my number of steps. I will continue working my arms with light weights and research some exercises around that and will do those nasty sit-ups 3 times a week, building up the number that I perform (keeping at 5 for now).

It is in writing now so it will be so.

Stay tuned for updates from The Tortoise's Weigh.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Portion Distortion

Yep, I have it and nope, it is not contagious...portion distortion.

After 9 weeks of being on my own plan of eating, I am starting to get better at portion sizes. Initially, unless it was basic counting, I was not good at portion sizes. So, here is one of the things I started doing. Take an item whose calories are based on weight and not a number (i.e. 7 crackers is a serving = xx calories). Try to guess a correct serving size (or the correct weight) for your "allowed" meal. Then weigh it and see if you are close. I was always having to cut extra off or take some away. Having to take away or add more has helped my visualization of the correct amount/volume.

I must say, now when I am eating certain items, I think back to how much of it I used to eat and realize how grossly distorted my portion sizes were (though I really don't think I was even paying attention at that time).

I found a great article on Spark People, The Bikini Diet, which is all about portion sizes. One part of the article has the analogy of using a bikini top for your portion sizes. For example, on a 9 inch plate, dinner should consist of one bikini top cup being meat or beans, one bikini top cup being your starch and the bikini bottom is your vegetable and/or salad. Now, if I picture what my bikini top and bottom would be, STOP, let's not go there, remember, it is a BIKINI (haha). Here is the link for the article:

I hope The Tortoise's Weigh has given you some ideas about portion control (if you have any issues with it)!

Monday, March 28, 2011

MIM #3 - Menu Item Monday

As promised, here is the recipe for Turkey Noodle Bake. It was delicious (and easy to boot)!

Turkey Noodle Bake - serves 3-4
1/2 lb. ground lean turkey
8 ounce can tomato sauce with garlic freshly ground black pepper
4 to 5 ounces whole grain wide noodles (mine were Ronzoni)
1/4 cup light sour cream
2/3 cup 1% cottage cheese
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1 ounce grated sharp cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Brown ground turkey in a non-stick pan. Drain off the fat. Add freshly ground black pepper and the tomato sauce to the drained ground turkey. Turn down the heat and let simmer until noodle mixture is made.
Boil the noodles till al dente. Drain the noodles and return to the pan.
Add sour cream, cottage cheese and sliced green onions to the noodles. Stir gently till mixed.
Spray an 8x8 baking dish with non-stick spray. Pour the noodle mixture in evenly. Top evenly with the ground turkey mixture. Sprinkle the grated cheddar cheese on top.
Bake for 20 minutes. Serve with a tossed salad. Enjoy!

Total calories for Turkey Noodle Bake is approximately 1350. If serving 3, it is about 450 calories per serving and for 4 servings, about 337 per serving.

If I make it again, I would probably use regular sour cream. DH says he doesn't taste the difference but I do!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

WID - Already?!?!

Wow, these weeks have just been flying by. I really don't know where the time goes. Okay, back to the business at hand...
I was a little worried about today. We ran errands yesterday and since our town really doesn't have a lot of shops for necessities, we had to drive to the next town, 40 minutes away. We decided to eat lunch at home, take a snack, and go out for dinner.
We ended up at Olive Garden. Yep, the place where 1 breadstick is 150 calories and 1 serving of there regularly dressed salad is 350 calories. There were seats available in the bar area and there was a wait for the dining room so we made the decision to just sit at the bar (also basketball was on the TV for DH).
I asked if they had nutrition information for their menu items. The server ran into the back and came out with handouts of all the information I could possibly need. It was great! I had skipped my 100 calorie snack for the day so added it to my 500 for dinner, giving me 600 calories I could use. Here is what I ended up with:
1/2 breadstick
2 servings of salad with light dressing on the side (I skipped most of the croutons)
1/2 serving of the Ravioli di Portobello (there were 7 Ravioli's, I ate 3)

I was stuffed. I estimated calories at, 75 for the 1/2 breadstick, 150-200 for the salad, and about 300 for the 1/2 ravioli's. Total: 525-575

I felt really good about my choices! It was kinda funny, a woman and her husband came and sat next to us while waiting for their table. She kept staring at what/how I was eating. It felt weird. I even saw her husband tap her to get her attention. At the very end, she asked if I had to ask for the nutrition information and that she had checked online before coming for dinner to see what she could have. We got to talking and I told her what I had and how it worked out. I think the biggest surprise was the low fat dressing you can get which was delicious! Thank you Olive Garden!

Oh, I almost forgot, WID (Weigh In Day). I lost another 2 pounds, bringing my total to 17 pounds in 9 weeks, still a little ahead of my goal. This is working and it is a plan I can live with the rest of my life. Why was I worried you ask? I felt sooooo full after dinner last night that I thought it would show on the scale (and even tho I stayed within calories, I didn't know how much the sodium would affect me). Whew!

Have a great week from The Tortoise's Weigh!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Mothers and Daughters

My mother always had somewhat of a tense relationship with her mother. I have always had somewhat of a tense relationship with my mother. I guess it was passed down.
My mother has always struggled with her weight. I have always struggled with my weight. I guess it was passed down.
My eating patterns, up until this time, have always been similar to my mothers. Her food motto, when I was growing up, was eat it all so no one would know you had any (hide the empty bag, wrapper, etc.). I consciously caught myself doing this in the past and remember being aghast that I did it. It was also to always be looking for the next weight loss diet, pill, clinic, camp, etc.
My mother seems to love it when I am overweight. She wants to talk about her latest diet, what she has learned, what I SHOULD be doing. If I visit her and am trying to be careful, it is always "I want to go out to this or that restaurant", "I never get to eat out because I have to go by myself", "Let's get a dessert and split it, PLEASE". It is like she needs for us to have being fat in common but, at the same time, she always makes comments about my (and my brothers) extra weight and how she is sooo worried about my brother or me dying before her. She wants me to be on the same diet plan she is on. Tonight, she told me that she is losing weight and I should do the New Atkins diet like she is and the kicker was not just that I should do it but "You could do this diet, I just bet you could, you should at least try it". I just wanted to scream but I refrained. I try to tell myself that she is old (82) and this circle of wanting me to diet and trying to sabotage my efforts has gone on for 30+ years and will not change. With most people I can stand up for myself but not with her, always being afraid of hurting her feelings and being made to feel guilty if I do say anything.
If anyone has any suggestions for dealing with a sabotaging mother, I would love to hear from you!
Thanks for checking in to The Tortoise's Weigh!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Portion Sizes

I learned something very important about my eating habits/food thinking habits on Monday. I took a recipe that sounded wonderful and altered the ingredients to make it lower calorie, lower fat and overall, healthier. Now, you are probably thinking to yourself that this was a step in the right direction and it was and is, BUT, I keep finding my mind trying to figure out how to get the most food for the least calories. This is not healthy thinking and shows that I still have a lot of work to do on my healthy thinking habits.

I really need to stop thinking about the volume and quantity of food and start thinking about the quality. If, when eating, I slow down and really focus on the flavors, ingredients, and textures of the food I find that I am satisfied quicker. If, when eating, I focus on the volume and eating quickly, I find that I am not satisfied and when I am not satisfied is when I tend to eat more, get hungry quicker, and tend to want a snack/dessert afterwards. This volume fixation is more prevalent when we go to a restaurant. I find myself looking at portion sizes and thinking to myself, "this cost X dollars and it is this small". Sometimes I even judge a restaurant based on cost to volume ratios. When making recipes at home, I will take the recipe and use low-fat versions (I tend not to use fat-free versions because most of them taste horrible and I cannot use sugar-free versions due to some migraine trigger) of ingredients to ensure a greater volume of food. See, I do need to work on this. I guess writing about it is the first step.

Okay, here is my next mini-challenge (in the overall big challenge of losing 100 pounds).
-Within 1 week - research and start using proper portion sizes
-Choose recipes that are naturally healthy rather than substituting items with "light", "fat-free" or "sugar-free" versions.*
-When eating, focus on the flavors, textures and quality of the ingredients.
-Start choosing restaurants based on quality, not quantity.

I am going to Las Vegas in a few months. My first mini-challenge was to lose 30 pounds by the time I went. This new challenge is going to be extremely important for the Vegas trip, given the buffet situation there (I know we will be doing some buffets, but more on that later).

* There are some items that I prefer lighter - I like skim or 1% milk, I like 1% cottage cheese, I am not a big red meat lover so if recipes call for ground beef, I tend to use ground turkey or chicken.

That's all for today from The Tortoise's Weigh.

Monday, March 21, 2011

MIM #2 - Menu Item Monday

I made a great dinner tonight but the recipe for my Turkey Noodle Bake will have to wait until next Monday. Why, you ask? Because I promised the recipe we use for Tabouli (or Tabbouleh).
Tabouli is soooo delicious and healthy. You should try it!

Tabouli - serves 6-8 (about 1 cup per serving)
1 cup boiling water
1 cup fine cracked wheat (bulgar)*
1 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
1/2 - 2/3 cup minced fresh mint leaves
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
3 tomatoes, diced
2 cucumbers, seeded and diced
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (+ or - to taste)
1/2 teaspoon salt

In a large mixing bowl, pour the boiling water over the cracked wheat and cover (make sure to use a bowl that can withstand boiling water). Let stand about 20 minutes or until the wheat is tender and the water is absorbed. Cool in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Add the parsley, mint, onion, tomatoes and cucumbers and toss with the cooled wheat. Combine the oil, lemon juice and salt in a separate bowl. Pour over the wheat mixture and mix well. Chill completely. Toss and serve.
*We found bulgar at a larger grocery store as well as a natural food store.
I think it is around 200 calories for a whole cup.

I never really thought much about parsley until I had this salad and trust me when I say it works. The salad has such a fresh clean taste and is really wonderful in the summer with some grilled meat.

I hope you enjoy reading (and maybe even trying) out the MIM recipes on The Tortoise's Weigh!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

It's Saturday - WID

I can't believe another week has gone by already, my how time flies. Let me get right to WID (Weigh In Day). Can you tell I am excited by the news? Well, I let go of 2.5 lbs., bringing me to 15 pounds gone in 8 weeks (not lost, just gone). Woohoo!

I had a huge work project this week which I was both excited about as well as dreading. I told you in a previous post that my DH and I own a cheese shop, which is in a tourist town. After working together for 8 years, building the business and a great staff, I needed something different. So, with a lot of research and a 20 page written business plan, I opened a tea shop almost 1 year ago. I have had a lot of requests for a website/listing of all the loose leaf teas I carry (now over 100), so I did it, I built a website this last week. It is very basic, it isn't pretty but, I think it will work for the immediate future.

You may be asking what the project has to do with WID. Well, I did find that I lost track of time. I wasn't thinking about food as much. I think I skipped a few snacks here and there. I am an emotional eater, eating when I am happy or sad but even more so when I am angry, anxious, or bored. Hmmmm, maybe I should give myself more projects, like cleaning out my closets (which will be a big one - I have trouble getting rid of stuff). Doesn't that sound like fun? NOT!

I will be posting the recipe for Tabbouleh on Monday. Have a good rest of the weekend.
See you Monday at The Tortoise's Weigh.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Cleaning your plate

I read a great article on SparkPeople today about portion control, something I struggle with. I am learning and trying to put into practice the things I have learned.
The article discussed the fact that you can lose weight just by eating single portions of your favorite foods. Learning what that single portion is though is the toughest part.

My DH is a wonderful cook. I love that he is willing to support me on this journey and helps as much as he can (some things I have to do for myself), trying new recipes and calculating calories.
About 1 week into this, he had made a wonderful, creamy, and rich, mushroom risotto for a dinner party we had. We were having leftovers for lunch a few days later. We each had our serving and there was some left in the pan. He kept eating and tried to give me more. I refused, saying I had enough. He does not like to throw food away. He got a little upset, stating there wasn't much left, he had already eaten more and I should finish it since it was such a small amount. My response was, "I have had enough and what is left can go to your waist, or my waist, or the garbage waste". He laughed and threw out the rest (there really wasn't enough to save). I remember feeling a sense of accomplishment. I didn't eat it just because there was a little left. Most people would not understand the significance of letting the food be tossed. I just have to keep remembering that saying "No thank-you" is okay.

A few other tips from the article, that I have been trying to practice are:
1) Using smaller plates or bowls
2) Ordering a non-fried appetizer as an entree
3) For dinner, ask if you can order off the lunch menu (typically they are smaller portions)
4) Have the restaurant box up half the meal as leftovers before even bringing out the entree
5) Ask upfront if you can order a "half" order but still watch the portion size
6) Pay attention to what you are eating - this is hard for me if other people are around as I get to talking and don't realize how much I have consumed
7) Read the food labels for serving size

If you have other suggestions, let me know!
That is all for today from The Tortoise's Weigh.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Top O' the morning to ya. Are you wearing green today? I am. I have a little bit of Irish in me (I think most people make that claim), being that my maiden name begins with "Mc".
What is on tap for dinner tonight? You guessed it, Corned Beef and Cabbage, of course. I will be making it in the crockpot with some potatoes and carrots added. I was looking for the calories in this meal and came upon a great article in Shape Magazine, written by Jennipher Walters of the websites and It not only has the calories but also nutrition information. The only information I would add is to by a flat cut of Corned Beef as opposed to a point cut. The flat cut is leaner.

The Health Benefits of Corned Beef and Cabbage: Shape Magazine:
"Corned Beef. High in protein, zinc, B-vitamins and thiamin, a 3-oz. serving of corned beef has 210 calories. Like any beef, it's high in fat, so limit your portion and enjoy every bite!
Cabbage. You can't have corned beef without cabbage! Although cabbage may not look as nutritious as say broccoli or Brussels sprouts, it is, in fact, an excellent source of vitamin C and folic acid, an important vitamin for women. It's also high in fiber, which helps fill you up!
Potatoes. Potatoes sometimes get a bad rap for being high in carbs, but potatoes are a complex carbohydrate perfect for active lassies. Potatoes contain some protein and calcium, along with iron, potassium, zinc and vitamin C. Be sure to eat the skin to get even more health benefits, including fiber!
Guinness. This dark Irish beer has been found -- when consumed in moderation -- to reduce the risk of blood clots that cause heart attacks and improve blood flow and pressure, according to researchers at the University of Wisconsin. Additionally, the type of beer is high in flavonoids, which are antioxidants. We'll toast to that"

Enjoy, and may the luck of the Irish be with you!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

I am glad the weekend is over!

How many times have you heard someone say that? I bet not many.

I am very sad that my friend had to leave yesterday and I will miss her terribly BUT, I will not miss the eating out. Three restaurants in three days (and two of them were Mexican). I was told, a few times, "I don't want to be the only one eating" and "It's vacation". I was not on vacation and I was eating, just trying to make healthier choices. It can be really hard for people, who don't have to let go of any weight, to understand the internal mind workings of someone who wants to let go of some weight. (Did you notice I said "wants to" and not "needs to", although I did think it momentarily?)

I am glad to say that I did not gain any weight nor did I lose any weight. I think one of the most positive things to come out of the weekend was that I was once again reminded that I can go out to eat, eat the foods I love and not over consume those foods. For the most part, I cut each meal in half or ordered a smaller portion. The plan continues to work.

My next goal is to start weighing myself only once a day beginning the day after my next WID. I really do have a bit of a scale obsession (addiction). This will be a tough goal for me.

I will continue to report from The Tortoise's Weigh.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Menu Item Monday (MIM) #1

My DH and I love to cook. We love to try new recipes. He is a dear to help me find recipes that tantalize my tastebuds and still be waist friendly.
I have decided to post a new menu item every Monday, thus Menu Item Monday or MIM for short. Today's item is a salad we had for dinner last night and it was thoroughly enjoyed!

Jicama, Red Pepper, Carrot Slaw with Pepper Jelly Dressing - serves 6
1/4 cup Pepper Jelly (your favorite flavor - we used a Raspberry Chipotle flavor)
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1/3 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup canola oil
1 pound Jicama root, peeled
2 large carrots
1 red pepper
1/4 cup freshly chopped cilantro leaves

Whisk the pepper jelly, lemon zest, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, and canola oil together. Cut the jicama, carrots and red pepper into matchstick size pieces (or you can use a food processor and shred the jicama and carrots and dice the red pepper). Toss the jicama, carrots and red pepper and chopped cilantro leaves together and pour the dressing over all. (You could also add a little bit of chopped jalapeno to this salad to spice it up even more.)

NOTE: The total calories per serving is about 180 BUT, there is a lot of dressing left over and I am not quite sure how to account for that. I just know that this slaw is healthy and delicious.
NOTE2: I know I said I would post the Tabbouleh recipe but this salad was just too delicious not to post first.

I hope you enjoy reading (and maybe even trying) out the MIM recipes on The Tortoise's Weigh!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

It's Saturday - WID

Saturday is here again and it is WID (Weigh In Day).

I survived last night at the Mexican restaurant. There were four of us and luckily, all of us are trying to watch what we eat.

The restaurant we went to does not have free tortilla chips which made it really easy not to eat any. The server came over and I asked her what would be a lower calorie option. She pointed to the salads - not what I wanted. There are too many restaurants that I have gone to, when being on various diets, that all I can remember having is salad. Again, I love salad but not every time I go out!

This restaurant has the BEST mole sauce ever!!! I couldn't pass it up. I asked the server about having just one a la carte mole enchilada and she stated that she could do the lunch menu bargain bite of one mole enchilada with a little of their saffron rice. Perfect!

We all split an order of the appetizer green beans. Yes, green beans, they are amazing. I think they are just steamed in some great broth, have lime juice squeezed all over them with a little bit of seasoned salt. Really good. I ate the majority of the chicken mole enchilada and half of the rice. We were celebrating our friend being in town and a birthday so the four of us split the flan for dessert. I only had a few bites and that was enough. I did drink about 5 glasses of water so I really felt full.

Okay, back to WID - even after the splurge last Saturday, even going out last night, even having homemade veggie pizza 3 times during the week, I lost 2.5 pounds - that is 12.5 lbs in 7 weeks now. Amazing. I'm kinda liking this slow and steady pace. Again, I am NOT feeling the least bit deprived.

We did make tabbouleh one night with some grilled chicken. I will post the recipe on Monday (which I am going to call Menu Monday).

Thanks for reading The Tortoise's Weigh!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Big challenge weekend ahead

I have a good friend visiting this weekend. She has already stated that she wants to go to her favorite restaurants while here. The first, a Mexican restaurant, the second, an Italian restaurant, and third, a barbecue restaurant. I haven't quite figured out what I am going to do yet and I am a little bit worried about it.
In the past, when dieting, I would order a salad, dressing on the side. Although I love salads, I hated feeling like that was the only thing I could have. We have ventured out to a few restaurants since starting this plan and I have been successful at eating only half my meal. BUT, three meals out in three days, I don't know about that.
I have been reading articles on what to eat at the Mexican restaurant and the Italian restaurant but, the barbecue restaurant is going to be a little tougher.
If anyone has any ideas, let me know!

I do want to let you know that we had a terrific lunch today - tuna melts. It came out to 300 calories for each person. Here is the recipe that serves two:

Tuna Melt - serves 2
2 - Thomas' multigrain light hearty muffins (English muffins)
1 - can (5 oz.) Albacore Tuna packed in water, drained
1 - stalk celery, diced
3 - tablespoons red onion, diced
3 - tablespoons chopped dill pickle (or pickle relish)
2 - tablespoons light Miracle Whip
1 - tablespoon Olive Oil Mayonnaise
1 - teaspoon prepared yellow mustard
1/4 - teaspoon celery seed
1/4 - teaspoon onion powder
1/4 - teaspoon garlic powder
2 - ounces Swiss cheese (we used Emmanthaler), grated

Open the English muffins and toast till slightly crispy (yes, each person gets two halves). Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (we used the toaster oven for both toasting and baking). Mix the drained tuna, celery, onion, pickle, light Miracle Whip, Mayonnaise, mustard, celery seed, onion powder, and garlic powder. Divide the mixture into 4 equal parts and top each English muffin half. Top each part with 1/2 ounce of the grated Swiss cheese. Bake for 12 minutes until cheese is melted and the tuna mixture is slightly warmed.
Note: If you are wondering why both, Miracle Whip and Mayonnaise, my DH like mayo and I like Miracle Whip so we compromised.

I hope you enjoy this recipe from The Tortoise's Weigh!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

My Blog Disclaimer

Disclaimer: All posts in this blog are formulated in my mind. Any resemblance to other blog posts, or blog names, is purely coincidental.

I started letting go of my weight a little over 6 weeks ago. I had not started looking for any motivation on the web yet (although in the last week or so I have found some great ones). I came up with my food plan using what had worked and not worked over the 30+ years of dieting.
I had finally learned that if you choose an eating plan that you can't picture yourself doing for the rest of your life, it will not work. One example of this for me is the high protein-low carb method. I don't like meat that much, I feel as if I don't metabolize meat that well, I cannot live, or picture my life, without my bread, pasta, pizza, etc.
I developed the plan for my blog, wrote it down and then did some internet surfing. For the name, The Tortoise's Weigh, all searches resulted in how much giant tortoises weigh. I thought it was a perfect name for my blog especially since I was planning on letting go of my weight slowly and steadily.
Since then, after reading one of my favorite blogs,, and linking to some of her favorites, and then some of their favorites, I have come across a few other blogs with references to tortoises and the motto, "slow and steady wins the race". And here I thought I was being so original.
So, as I go forth with my blog, my posts, my plan, my letting go of weight, if similarities exist, I apologize and please know that the similarities are purely coincidental.
Thank you from The Tortoise's Weigh.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Impetus

You might be asking what the driving force was to get started on letting go of 100 pounds.

Here goes...
I am attending a convention in Las Vegas in June.
I will be flying to Las Vegas.

The last time I flew, I had to use a seatbelt extender. It was a horrible feeling for me. I felt very embarrassed. I couldn't even bring myself to ask for the extender. I am blessed to have a husband who saw my consternation, understood, and got the extenders for me. On one of the legs to our destination (there were 4 in total for the whole trip, 2 going and 2 coming back), I was able to get the regular seatbelt buckled but I could only take shallow breaths the entire way. I don't even want to think how that looked. LOL!
The weight I want to let go of before the trip is just one of the mini-goals that I have set. I am not going to let this trip be the final destination in my weight journey.

As William Shakespeare said, "To climb steep hills requires slow pace at first", and as always, the motto I am using, "Slow and steady wins the race". Thanks for visiting The Tortoise's Weigh!
(Picture by Michelle Henry)

P.S. No offense to Sumo wrestlers who follow a special diet for strength and weight.

Monday, March 7, 2011

I made it through

Yesterday was a long day. I had a few more arguments with myself surrounding getting back on track. I ventured into town to get a few things done at work and it took longer than I thought it would. I got hungry, really hungry. The type of hunger that makes you want to just start grabbing whatever food is around. Oh, did I tell you my DH and I own a cheese shop. Over a hundred types of delicious, imported, high fat/high calorie cheese. We also have quite an array of delicious salami's and some imported snack foods. Needless to say, it was quite tempting to indulge in the food around me. MeB4 kept saying "You blew it yesterday and is this really worth it? You had an increase of 1.5 pounds even though you consumed less than you used to. Why not just go back to how you were eating before. Let's go out for a big lunch or have some cheese/salami/chips/crackers." MeNow won again and I ended up having a healthy sandwich from Subway.
I kept thinking that I hadn't done THAT bad at the dinner party. I was watching my portion controls (or so I thought). I entered everything I had consumed at that dinner into the nutrition chart on Sparkpeople. It ended up being around 1800 calories. 1800 CALORIES! IN ONE MEAL! That is more than what I am trying to consume in one day. I also can just imagine how much sodium I had and it was late. No wonder the scale showed that increase. Well, this morning, the scale showed that I am back to where I was before that fateful dinner. I am glad I got back on track. I have found that I can have a splurge and not give up the plan entirely. In fact, I have now planned my next splurge for an upcoming mini-vacation in April.
Thanks for checking in and remember, if I can get back on track, so can you!
Slow and steady wins the race at The Tortoise's Weigh.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Mind Battle

We had friends over for dinner last night. We planned the meal and the time to work with my plan (have I mentioned I am a tad bit structured (anal)). Dinner got delayed, I got really hungry, I ate too many appetizers and then followed it by eating too much dinner and then decided I would go ahead and eat dessert.
I did a little mental kicking last night, I got on the scale this morning (twice, have I mentioned I have a wee bit of scale addiction), and guess what, a 1.5 pound increase.

Now my mind is battling with itself...
MeB4) You failed, you didn't have enough willpower to stop yourself.
MeNow) Your plan is a guideline. It is okay to splurge every now and then.
MeB4) Why did you have the ice cream? Why did you keep taking more? Why didn't you quit?
MeNow) It is okay. You didn't eat an additional 5,000+ calories for a 1.5 lb. gain.
MeB4) You might as well give up and go back to eating the way you were.
MeNow) No, let's figure out a way to a) get back to the plan and b) allow for splurges in your plan and c) figure out how to keep this from happening every time you entertain. It is your plan and you can do what you want. Part of living life is to have some splurges but you need to be able to enjoy them and not avoid them. We need to plan for the splurge. Let's see, maybe once a month, allow for a splurge. Let's calculate out what we ate last night and see what the result is next Saturday at the next WID (weigh in day).
MeB4) I am cool with that.
MeNow) Whew, I won that one.

Okay, the old me and the new me are now back in sync. If you are reading this, you might think, "This woman is whacky". I'm not. Really. It is just the internal dialogue that many of us have. I just happened to write it down as a permanant record. Oh no, what did I do? Maybe I am a little whacky sometimes and that is okay.

I hope I didn't scare you away from The Tortoise's Weigh!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Official WID - Weigh In Day

I call Saturday mornings my "Official Weigh In Day". Why official? Well, I have an obsession with the scale, especially when I am trying to let go of my weight. I weigh myself many times a day. Yes, I know it is not healthy and yes, I know it is an addiction I need to break. I have set up some interim steps to break it but I am not at the point of letting my DH hide the scale (yet). I will cover all my interim goals in subsequent posts.

So anyhow, I initially told you I had to lose (let go of) 80-100 pounds. 100 would be best and would put me at the higher end of a healthy range for my height but I put the 80 in as it sounds more reachable. I am 5'10" and I am 53 years old (54 next month).

Oh, you might be asking why I am saying that I am letting go of my weight. When you lose things, you tend to want to find them. I do not want to find the weight that I lose (let go of) ever again.

Okay, I have rambled enough this morning, back to the topic at hand, WID (weigh in day). I started using my plan 6 weeks ago today. The goal is to drop pounds SLOWLY. I want to average 1.5 lbs a week. As of today, I have let go of 10.5 pounds - a little above average. This is working. I do not feel deprived or hungry. I eat what I want.

Have a great weekend from The Tortoise's Weigh.

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Guidelines of my Plan

I am not a doctor. I am not a nutritionist. I probably don't get all the nutrients that I am supposed to (I am sure I didn't get all the nutrients I was supposed to as I gained weight either).
I think everyone is different and has to find their own way of letting go of their weight. Here is what I have come up with that works for me. With the millions of diets out there, I am sure someone, somewhere has written something similar to this but I have not seen it.

My food guidelines are as easy as 1,2,3,4,5.
I eat 5 times a day, breakfast, am snack, lunch, pm snack, and dinner.
1 snack is 100 calories
1 snack is 200 calories
1 meal is 300 calories
1 meal is 400 calories
1 meal is 500 calories

Total: 1500 calories a day. This should allow me to lose (SLOWLY) 1.5 pounds a week.
I try to eat something every 2-2.5 hours. Breakfast at 9, snack at 11, lunch at 1, snack at 3:30 and dinner at 5:30 or 6.

I am not a big fruit or veggie lover (especially cooked veggies). I try to have 1-2 fruits a day and 1-2 vegetables a day. I don't measure or weigh my food very often (if I go over a little, so what, it is still better than what I was consuming before). Remember, this is the tortoise's way (weigh). Slow and steady wins the race.

I have found that higher carbs works better for me so, I eat a lot of whole grain breads and pastas.

I really try to think about what I want, what I feel like eating, what I am craving and I incorporate that. I have learned that most sugar free products trigger migraines for me. I have also found that sugar free sodas (I loved my diet Pepsi) make me hungry.

Working out: I really don't like exercising right now. I am trying to move, dance, walk, etc. for at least 20 minutes a day. I would imagine that as I lose weight moving in some manner, for longer, will get easier.

Eating out: My husband and I love to eat out. So, as a rule of thumb, I am cutting my meals in half and trying to make better choices. We aren't eating out as often and I am packing my lunch as opposed to ordering out.

Tomorrow is (the official) weigh day. It will be the end of 6 weeks since starting to eat this way. I will let you know how it is going and some of my mini goals.

Thanks for reading The Tortoise's Weigh!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Why a tortoise?

This blog is about my goal of losing 80-100 pounds.
Over the years, I have tried so many different diets and I have now dieted myself to the highest weight ever. I can actually pinpoint the major gains and losses to things going on in my life...going on a cruise - lost 40 pounds, being on that cruise - gained 8 pounds, quit smoking - gained 40 pounds, my father's death - gained 20 pounds, etc. You get the picture.
In the past, I started diets all gung ho and I lost very quickly, for the first few weeks. Then, I stop losing as fast, I get frustrated, and I give up. Most diets had me cut out the foods I love and when I gave up, I would binge on all of my favorites to the point of weighing more than when I started the diet.
I cannot and will not repeat this cycle again. I am taking a different approach this time. I am not cutting out the foods I love, I am not going to deny myself any food, and I am not going to starve myself. My father always said "Eat what you want, just less". This is what I am going to do except, being a very structured person (okay so I am a little anal), I do need some guidelines.
The first guideline: Slow and steady wins the race. Just like the tortoise in "The Tortoise and the Hare", one of Aesop's Fables. Thus the birth of this blog, The Tortoise's Weigh.