Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Being an American is Killing Me!

Before you fly off the handle, this is not an attack on patriotism; it’s a call to be more patriotic. I am proud to be an American. I am grateful to live in a country where I am free. I fight hard to secure those freedoms and fight against anyone wanting to take them from me. I believe every person deserves the right to love whomever they love, and they should have that right to express that love, and make it legal. I put my hand over my heart when the National Anthem is sung. I am often surprised how many don’t. I admit there was a period of my life where I didn’t. I grew up. I believe in, even though it often makes me cringe what I hear, the Freedom of Speech. I support the right for others to bear arms, even though I am vehemently opposed to guns. Well, the people that don’t use them properly and end up killing people is what really bothers me. But yet, I believe all have a constitutional right to bear arms. I believe in the democratic process, even if it doesn’t always make sense as it is playing out. I believe in the power of the electorate, and wish more people would become a part of the process. I believe in demonstration and making your voice heard by those you, or your neighbor, elected into office. I believe in the troops and am so very grateful for their service. I may not be a fan of war (never have been – no matter what), but I support the troops. I believe in the care and health of all Americans. All should be able to have health as part of the right to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.

Enough about me and my beliefs. You pretty much now know how I vote. I admit, I often split my ballot, even though I am sure I sound like a raving Democrat.

You are probably asking, what the hell is she going to write about? How is being an American killing her? The killing is not metaphoric. It’s actual. I am so proud of being an American; I ingest patriotism on a daily basis. I looooooooove being an American. And my health and waistline are suffering for my high level of patriotism. Please be prepared for some frank and honest discussion here. I am open about my life in the hopes that I might inspire others. I am not happy unless I am effecting change on this world. I have arthritis, diagnosed at 25. I have chronic asthma. I have been told I have fatty liver. I am pre-disposed to type 2 diabetes. I am overweight. I am a sugar addict. I love diet pop! I don’t much like exercise. I suffer from mild body dysmorphic disorder. I have a self-diagnosed eating disorder. I suffer from chronic headaches (worse at times than others and a result of gluten). I have a high level of gluten intolerance, but yet I still crave it. And I still eat it. I have, as my doctor describes them, difficult feet. I don’t know this is a result of diet per se, but if my weight were more under control the pressure and thus pain would be less. I have done Weight Watchers, and even been a leader teaching others how to lose weight and maintain that loss. I have been a cutter in the past. I suffer from occasional bouts of depression. I have treated, and still do, my body in horrid ways that I would never want to see a friend do to themselves. I constantly look at skinny girls and wish I could be them. I can’t bear children. I lost that ability at the age of 26. No doubt my diet played a role.

Have you seen the video for Fucking Perfect by P!nk? It’s an amazing video and one that brings me to my knees. In so many ways, I feel I am that girl. I feel misunderstood, underappreciated, overlooked, not pretty enough, not good enough. I am tearing up now thinking about it and how I feel so connected to the content. I often wonder how much of my life I have wasted on these thoughts in my head and the hours spent eating them away. The eating only makes things worse and only aids in the strengthening the underlying issues. I know in my head that if I stop eating my pain and start exercising to release the endorphins and serotonin, I will feel better and achieve some victory over my issues with myself. And before you ask, I have done and continue to do therapy. It’s been a while, and I do wish to get back in that chair. It has helped me tremendously.

The Standard American Diet, also known as S.A.D, is killing me. I am the typical American (now at least). I work in a low paying job. I have discovered that when money is tight I gravitate towards the cheap food, which is the unhealthiest! I am a former vegetarian. I was only a healthy vegetarian for about 3 years of the 7.5 years I spent in that lifestyle. The majority of the time I was a Junkfoodatarian. While I am no longer veg, I am still a Junkfoodatarian. And yes, that isn’t a word but I am making it one. Someone alert Webster’s! The less money I have, the harder it seems to support my love of organic produce and the natural foods. I know many people do it, often for around $30/week. But for me, a symptom of my disorder, I like to buy more food and eat out more (only costing me more dollar-wise).

I feel like I am putting too much of this on me. The S.A.D is loaded with foods that do this to me. To us! To the U.S! We are in this together. My call to patriotism is that we fight the Standard American Diet, which is just plain sad. We must find ways to incorporate local and natural foods into our diet. We must stop all this dieting and eat naturally. We must work to eliminate processed foods from our diet as much as we can. We should start growing more of our own food. We need to walk, bike, run, skate…more. We need to drink more water, and not from plastic bottles that forever stay in landfills. We all need to do more. And we need to be easy on ourselves when we aren’t perfect at it. Perfection can’t exist as it would be impossible to maintain. And the definition of insanity is doing the same again and again and expecting different results. That has been my life for the last couple years. Why I am surprised to have pretty much gained all the 85 pounds back I lost in 2004, I don’t know. I know I have earned these friends. They’re unhealthy toxic friends that I want to go away. I wish I could just hack them off, but I know that isn’t really possible. Well, unless my health insurance starts covering plastic surgery. Am I going to be spot on as I answer my own call to be more patriotic by being less patriotic to the S.A.D? Hell no. Am I going to keep trying and showing my patriotism to the healthy way of living? Hell yes. Am I going to continue to work and make myself better so that I may continue to work and make America great? Hell yes. I have to or I won’t be here anymore. I ask you to be a proud American, a healthy American, and the healthiest you. That may just mean you drink one less pop today. I vow I will. But for the sake of all Americans, please vote with your fork and supermarket checkout bill. Please let the public know you support more natural foods and ways of living. I am counting on your help too. I can’t go this alone.


Looks like I will be blogging here again!  I promise to keep you posted.  Feel free to leave comments.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Let's take a walk back in time

Let’s look back at myself, circa 4/16/2008:

What do I want this week/month in terms of weight loss?

I want to lose, no specific amount, just a loss. – Wow, I had a goal, eh?

What will it take to get this?

Follow program as much as possible (Core)

Watch portion sizes

Pay attention to my Comfort Zone

Rid house of trigger foods

Don’t buy trigger foods

Don’t eat trigger foods in the office

Drink more water

Eat more of the 8 GHG (Good Health Guidelines)

Track as much as I can

Be active as often as I can (cleaning house should do) – Seriously, that’s all I could do then!

Am I willing to do this?

I don’t want to but I don’t want to feel the way I do any longer. I am so unhappy with myself and refuse to allow myself to feel this way any longer. I want to be able to eat the yummy foods that I have been eating lately, but they are not helping me feel yummy about me. So, YES, I am! – Um, yeah. I wasn’t. I kept gaining after this and didn’t start until October 2009. Besides, no good goal or commitment can come from statements such as I am so unhappy with myself and I still want to eat the yummy foods that are making me fat!

What clothes/size do I feel comfortable in? (Simple Abundance question)

Honestly, my goal weight size, which is a 10 (mostly). I feel comfortable when my Gap size 12 jeans are baggy on my butt. These are ripped and I can’t wear them now, but I am keeping them as my goal pants. I like baggy clothes and I want those be in smaller sizes than I am wearing now. I also want to feel good in form fitting clothes.

I feel comfortable in the spring/summer clothes I have. I refuse to buy any more clothes for this year. I do not have the finances and refuse to do it. – Yeah, you guessed it. I bought bigger clothes.

What am I willing to do this week?

Follow Core Plan

Get activity pts via cleaning – Ha! This one makes me laugh every time I see it.

Drink more water

Eat more of the GHG

Not eat trigger foods at work – I still did!

Not buy any trigger foods

Throw away Jelly Belly’s at home

Progress Not Perfection

It’s Never Completely Bleak


Now, fast forward a couple years to today! Here are some answers to a few of these questions:

Am I willing to do this?

Hell yes! I have committed to losing weight, in a healthy manner and not rushing the process. I now know the things I need to learn in my head to help it stay off this time. Things I didn’t work on before, I know I need to tackle on the way down this time. I have dreams that I am working to make reality, and losing weight and achieving physical and mental health are part of that. I will be a derby girl, and I want to get in shape for that, and for my health and happiness.

What clothes/size do I feel comfortable in? (Simple Abundance question)

I feel good where I am now, but I still want to be able to wear my size 10 Gap jeans again. If I don’t lose another pound, I am happy with who I am at this moment in time.

What will it take to get this?

Drinking water

Exercise (5-6 times per week and varied activity; treadmill, elliptical, rowing machine, weights, yoga, punch-boxing, stability ball, biking, walking)

Eating Gluten Free – and a balanced menu

Being vocal about my needs and goals

Putting myself first (it’s not selfish when it ensures I will be around for my loved ones longer)

It may never be completely bleak, but who wants that as their motto for life? Not this girl!


I get these weekday emails from an online service, www.tut.com, Notes from the Universe. Today’s message really spoke to me. “xxx, you're the only person who knows what's right for you. The only one. And if you already know what this is, commit to it. If you don't, commit to nothing.”  Only you know,

The Universe

I know what I want. I know what it will take to get it. I am already doing the steps needed, and I want to continue. The foundation is set, the frame is up, the walls are taking shape, now I just need to decorate!

I hope the calendar inspired you last week. I looked at the entry for last Sunday, “stress relief”. I actually had to sit and think what was stressing me in my life. I couldn’t think of anything. Sure, I don’t want to be single all the time, but I am not stressed about that. Sure, I wish my bank account balance was higher and more secure, but I am not stressed about it. I always seem to have enough for what I need. Sure, I wish I could find a home for my foster doggy, but he is making my life beautiful while he is with me, so I am not stressed.

See how well he helps me exercise!  I had 10-15 pounds on my core for an extra workout, and for every crunch (sometimes sit ups) completed on my stability ball, I got a kiss on the nose.  He's such a good personal trainer!

It felt good to not feel any stress. I still got up early to go to the gym. I finally used the Lat Pull machine. I started at 25 pounds. Wasn’t enough. So, I tried 50. Wow, did that feel good! It was a challenge, but I did 15 reps. I am committing to using more of the weight machines and really working on muscle strength and composition! You have my word.

Tomorrow is weigh-in. I will post again later this week. I leave you with a recipe to use up the last of some of the summer veggies. Sadly, it is almost the end of many growing seasons! But, the yummy squashes and apples are coming! And the cool weather veggies will be coming back around.

Cucumber and Black Bean Salad

6 servings

2 points each

2 large or 3 medium cucumbers, peeled, halved, quartered and chopped

½ bunch cilantro, chopped fine

3 large or 5 small to medium ears corn, cut off cob

1 can black beans (14.5 ozs), drained and rinsed

¼ - 1/3 C fresh squeezed lime juice

Cumin, cayenne, salt and pepper to taste

(You can also add in some chopped bell peppers)

Combine and let sit for a little while. Yummy! (you can add some olive or canola oil to this if you like)

Have a great week and remember, Sprout something (seeds or seeds of change)!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Motivation...to exercise!?!

This post is long overdue. Please accept my apologies.

So, it is August 9th. We are in the dog days of summer. Forecast calls for 90’s all week, most likely no matter where you live. The heat is on! I love Glenn Fry. : ) How is your weight loss journey? Is it hot and sweaty like the temps on the mercury? Or is it cool and closed off like the air conditioned house you live in? If it’s cool and closed off, it’s time to get it cranked up as the mercury rises! Last time we discussed change. Today, let’s discuss motivation and exercise. And just to be fun, let’s talk about them together!

Not motivated to exercise? How many times have we said that we just can’t find the drive or desire to work out? If we had a nickel for each time, we’d all be rich! We could afford the surgeries to get us the body we don’t want to work to get. How sad is that? I bet most of us have thought about plastic surgery as a viable option to working out and sweating our way down in inches and pounds. Okay, maybe I’m the only one. Motivation is hard to achieve in the weight loss journey, let alone in developing an exercise regime. When we think of all we need to do to be healthy and at our goal weights, we get overwhelmed. We need to: eat less, exercise more, drink plenty of water, take a daily vitamin, eat enough fruits and veggies, get in enough fiber, get in our healthy oils (fats), watch our protein consumption, cut back on salt…the list goes on and on and on. And for many of us, this is a huge shift in our psyche and daily lives. You have had some time to digest the change discussion of last month. You know that change is constant and that we all go through it. You know it can be hard, and bruising, but that you are better for going through it! So, how can knowing this help you muster motivation?

Here is a link I re-discovered with weight loss motivation ideas: http://www.weight-loss-motivation-program.com/weight-loss-motivation-tips1.html

Now, on to exercise motivation. What keeps you from working out? What is it you don’t like about it? What will it take for you to do it regularly?

Here is an article with 7 good tips on exercise motivation. You even get a couple bonus tips. http://top7business.com/?id=460

Here is a great article on starting a regime: http://zenhabits.net/4-simple-steps-to-start-the-exercise-habit/

And the follow-up to this article: http://zenhabits.net/31-ways-to-motivate-yourself-to-exercise/

While your motivation to exercise may be weak and puny right now, it can grow into a mighty and strong aspect of your daily life. And the good news, so will you be mighty and strong. Set small goals for yourself, but keep an overall big goal in mind. Post your goals where you will see them every day. Maybe post a goal a week on your bathroom mirror or closet door. One great tip I heard a while back is to put goals on the inside of kitchen cabinets. Maybe post a special and truly meaningful quote on the cabinet that keeps all the junk that tempts you the most. You will think twice about eating it, I promise! Track your progress like the above article references. Seeing your number go down and having written proof is a huge motivator. Seeing your exercise minutes go up is a huge motivator to keep going. If you can only do 5 minutes the first time, by the 10th, you will be to 15 or even more or more.

Last Tuesday, I went to my gym. I did the ‘mill and I did some intervals with some jogging. The treadmills were noisy, so I didn’t do much jogging. I was mortified at first because the noise meant I was so heavy. But, I switched mills and the other was noisy too. I realized that the front plastic covers were loose and just jostling too much. I know it wasn’t me. I tried the rowing machine next on a recommendation from a message board friend. The exercise physiologist helped me get started. By 5 minutes, I was done. It was so much work. I kept going. He walked by around 9 mins and 30 secs. I asked him if 10 minutes was good the first time and he nodded. I asked myself, what would Maiden Do? She’s the derby girl that loaned me her skates so I could attempt tryouts, and a huge motivation for me in my journey to becoming a derby girl. That question gave me the answer. I kept going. I finished at 20 minutes! I was so proud of myself.

You never know what you are capable of doing. To some, 20 minutes on the rowing machine may not seem like much. But, for my first time, it was like climbing Everest. Okay, maybe that comparison is slightly exaggerated, but you get the point.

We all have to tap into our inner reserves of strength, power, and confidence. We have to find the person we have always been capable of becoming. We have to try, or we will always fail. To try is to succeed. Which do you want, failure or success?

Friday, July 30, 2010

Change and Derby

“Life is change; it is continuous change. Nothing is constant.” – Daisaku Ikeda

“The only thing that stays the same is change.” – Melissa Etheridge (song is “Change”)

These two thoughts always strike a chord in me.  I am a person that constantly craves change, although I find that I don’t always prepare myself enough to fully value the change and reap the most benefits. Change is hard. We have all said that and heard it. Change can be renewing. Change can come in many forms: sad, exciting, anxious, nervous, unsettling,…but it is always transformative. And it is the one constant in our lives.

We all know we will pass away some day. That is a given. Sorry, you aren’t the immortal you thought you were! I know we have all wished for that at one point in our lives, or thought we were. There are not many other constants we live by, save that every 24 hours a new day begins and the sun and moon orbit the earth. We also know that the seasons will change. Everything else is up for grabs!

When it comes to our daily lives, the change element is much more impactful. We are constantly given opportunities to learn and grow from mistakes. We are always making decisions about how we will live our life that day. Some of us are list makers and planners, others fly by the seat of our pants people. We choose to proceed one way and on one path, but life often derails us. I have certainly seen my share of derailments, as have we all. Some of us more than others. The true test of character and resiliency is what we do with the opportunities that come our way and what change we allow to sink into our moral fiber and existence.

I believe that we create the change we want. I believe that we create the resulting effects on our lives by past actions. I also believe that if we desire something, that our thoughts can manifest that in our lives. We have the choice to create much of our own destiny. Weight Watchers is a great example of this philosophy. During my tenure as a leader, I saw many people come and sit in meetings, talking about the program and their lives on program. Many of these members never hit goal, lifetime, or anywhere close to that on their journey. It always saddened me when I saw members week after week paying their dues but not getting anywhere on the scale. But, I finally realized one day that this was their path and that is where they were supposed to be. Who was I to judge their journey? The goal of WW is to hit Lifetime, lose your weight, maintain it for 6 weeks and then you never pay as long as you are at goal. You only have to weigh in once a month. Pretty cool and a great reward for ones efforts! Many members I saw were lifers, but would never hit lifetime. That was what was so sad. I had to come to the realization that the time wasn’t right for the weight to come off but by them being there, they were learning the tools they needed for when it was right. The change was happening in their minds and heart and beliefs, it just hadn’t come to fruition yet.

This realization hit me in 2009. I was my former members that had saddened me so. I was nearly back to my heaviest weight ever, just shy by 6 pounds. I was miserable. I was eating crap and I felt like crap. I was working at a health food store and gaining weight. What the heck? There were too many “healthy” snacks, a lack of desire to count points or eat core foods, and to step on a scale. I had “taught” weight loss enough that I was tired of WW. But, I also hit my rock bottom. It was Labor Day weekend of last year that I realized just how miserable I was. I was laid up from the foot and leg surgery and house-sitting for my parents while they were on vacation to my favorite place in the world, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. This is the one place that recharges me for the coming year. I was so sad that I couldn’t put any weight on my leg, that I was in pain, that I couldn’t be where I wanted to be, and that I had let myself get back to where I said I would never be weight-wise. All this time up the scale, I still hung around the WW message boards, I just never talked about my food or diet. I didn’t update my stats. I lied, in essence, to the people I knew there. Bottom line, I felt like crap.

I decided that weekend would be my last that way. While I have no idea what life will be like in the future, I knew that then and there I had to make changes. I stepped on the scale once I was healed and out of the cast, October 1, 2009. 240.5. Ouch! But, it was what it was. I started counting calories on the Daily Plate as I wasn’t ready to go back to WW. I finally realized after losing and gaining (not gaining it all back but teetering enough) that I needed WW again. It works and I know it does. So, 3/10/10 I started. I made a pact with myself that I would be down 30 pounds by 10/10/10, just sounded too good to be true. 7 months was enough time. I started WW about 8 pounds less than my 10/1 weight. I have now hit 16.8 since 3/10. So, I am down 24.7 pounds. I know I can hit 30! My reward, a yoga weekend at Cityoga with Kate Potter, creator of Namaste Yoga which has been a true blessing to me. I won’t attend the whole weekend, but you better believe I will be there for a class or two. And the studio is owned by a WW leader.

The change happens when we are ready for it. Even when we don’t think we are ready, it is happening in us. It may not manifest itself outwardly for some time, but when it does, watch out!!!!!!!! I knew that this time I had to look at my weight loss differently. I didn’t do the things mentally I needed to do in 2004 when I lost the 85 pounds. I wasn’t ready to be a 10 (size that is) and to receive all the attention that brought into my life. I was uncomfortable with that change. So, this time I am approaching this as I should for it to last, a lifestyle change. I am approaching this on many levels. I never exercised before and now I am getting a variety of activities in and loving it. My body even craves it now! Who knew that would happen?

I discovered the roller derby last fall with the help of another WW leader. I have decided that I will be a derby girl and it will be soon. I even attempted tryouts but realized very quickly I must change my body and my activity to be able to handle this rigorous sport. Since I desire this so much, I am taking the steps, at a pace that is comfortable for me, to get there. I want this, and because of this new world that has opened up to me, I am finally seeing the psychic shift I needed to allow my longtime dreams to manifest in my life. Because of this, and my desire to lose my weight slower, I am changing. It is palpable change as well as psychic. I can see the outer rewards and feel the inner physical rewards. I am more energetic and strong. I am smaller in my circumference. But the amazing things that are happening are not seen when I am glanced upon. I am so much happier with who I am. I am loving myself more than I ever have before. I am open to compliments and accepting that they are true. Believe it or not, when people compliment you they really do mean it! It’s the truth. So say thank you and zip your lips!

I recently finished Going in Circles by Pamela Ribon. She is an LA Derby girl that wrote a fictional story of a woman going through a break in her marriage and finding roller derby. While it was a bit cliché, okay very cliché, she discovered that the roller derby was the saving grace in her life. Even though I am not out there skating on a team, YET, I believe this is one hundred percent true in my life. I am learning so much about myself. It is truly helping me to get in the best physical shape I have EVER been in my whole life. And it teaches you that if you work hard enough, whatever you worked to get will come and your life will be the better. Sure, you get beat up and bruised along the way, but the reward is worth it!

Are you happy where you are? If you aren’t, what can you do to be happy? Decide to accept the constancy of change, embrace it and don’t fight it, and work hard enough to get banged up along the way. Transform yourself! No one else will or can! The journey is so worth it!

Derby kisses,

Meg (soon to be Fresh Meat)


Tuesday, May 4, 2010


I am trying out for the Roller Derby this month!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Workshops start next week with tryouts on the 23rd!  I am so freakin' excited, nervous, scared, and excited!  Oops, I said excited twice.  Well, I am that much!

Monday, May 3, 2010


This is totally off topic, but I just had to share the latest picture of the 4 adorable kittens my stray kitty had.  They are only 4 days old and look how cute they are already.

One with his paw over the others shoulder, and 2 curled up into each others bellies.  So adorable!  And can I just say how it looks like momma had triplets plus one? 

I have not named them and am trying to keep my distance and not cuddle too much so as to not get too attached.  Someone please adopt that black and white one.  I am getting too attached to him!  I want to be able to see him as he grows up!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Check out this steal of a deal!

OKay, I am not a size 12 yet, but I will be soon enough.  I have gone from an 18/20 to a 16 in a month and a half.  Plus, with my new gym membership and motivation to get in shape to be a roller derby girl, it will be soon enough!    This is a great work into dress.  My sister is even motivated to work down to it as well, and I rarely see her in a dress.  Originally $129, marked down to $79.99, final price $5.34 with tax.  Yep, you read that right.  It was on sale for $4.99!  Gotta love good bargains!

I lost .8 this week.  I had the most tasty and enjoyable weekend.  My meal Saturday night may have kept me from losing more, but I lost and I enjoyed every bite!  I went to see the Indigo Girls in Bloomington, IN, and I ate at Roots before.  Roots is a wonderful local foods vegan/vegetarian restaurant.  It was so freeing to walk into a restaurant where I knew I could order anything I wanted and didn't have to pick from a few limited items with modifications.  My friend and I split the appetizer sampler platter which was all fried foods.  The breaded and fried seitan was awesome, as were the sauces that came with the appetizer platter.  We left food on it. 

Dinner was polenta with local farmer's cheese and homemade chunky marinara.  My friend ordered the Tofu in Peanut Sauce.  We got extra plates and shared the deliciousness.  OMG!  So delish!  She ordered the curried sweet potato soup that was amazing as well.  I sipped an ABC, Apple, Beet, Carrot juice.  The only regret, I would have ordered ginger in my juice.  Other than that, I have no regrets about this meal!  Well, that and I didn't have enough points of stomach space to eat more.  You know, the amazing thing was I wasn't stuffed.  I would say I was full, but we walked to the concert around the corner and I wasn't uncomfortable at all.  I was even hungry after singing and dancing to the Girls!  So, by leaving food, not cleaning my plate, getting some activity, and indulging appropriately, I lost weight!

I am .3 pounds from my first 5% goal.  Whatdya think?  Will my post next week say I did?  I think so!

If you are in the Indianapolis area, check out Livrite Fitness.  I just joined this week and I am loving it.  It is $1 to join right now and you get a free month for a friend.  Pool, sauna, cardio equipment, classes...I will be at basic yoga Mon and Wed nights whenever I can.  I was given a great rate and I am glad I made the decision to join.  The first night, I did 30 minutes on the elliptical.  I was drenched.  Last night, I was only able to do 15 but I didn't give up.  I did another 15 on the recumbent bike.  I have said for years, I have arthritis in my knees.  I can't do bikes.  My knees never hurt and don't today.  My muscles are awake and alive and it feels good.

I also welcomed new life into mine.  My stray kitty had her babies!  They are sooooooo cute.  4 little ones came into this world yesterday.  Here they are.  And they are looking for homes in about 6-8 weeks!

Have a great week and remember, Sprout something (seeds or seeds of change)!