Saturday, October 16, 2010

Time to Post those Points!!!

Post your points ladies! And get ready for next challenge starting on Monday!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Don't throw in the it!

Because Audrey is brilliant, I'm going to pay her the best compliment I know how and imitate her. I'm also offering a little giveaway the next go round: a Thanksgiving-themed dish towel (with a pumpkin soup recipe on it!). Audrey will decide if it goes to the winner, the runner-up or some other special challenge winner mid-way through.

Loneliness Hinders Progress

Hi Ladies. It's me. Y'know, Sue.

I can't remember the last time I did a post. I've mostly just been blog stalking. Nearly every new challenge, I start fresh with counting my calories and tracking my points, but after about 3 or 4 days, I run out of steam and decide that I just don't care. I've been fairly consistent with my exercise, mostly because it has morphed into an essential mental health outlet, but my motivation to have discipline and order in my eating and my life are severely lacking.

I think what it boils down to is that I'm lonely. My husband was gone for 3 months doing job training and he has been home less than 10 days since he's been back from Houston. He heads out for a month-long hitch on a new oil rig tomorrow. When he got home about a week ago after a week-long hitch, we were spooning and he was saying how nice it was to be home. I just broke out crying, much to Dan's discomfort, and said, "It's nice to feel like I matter to someone. Someone my own age."

I feel much like Samantha in this post. I just haven't developed a really close friendship with anyone here in Cokeville. My friendship with Zoe, who died 6 weeks ago, seemed to have the potential to go in that direction. I could call her to come hang out whenever I was feeling lonely but didn't want to drag my kids out and didn't want other people to see my messy house. But Zoe is gone now.

Zoe's death has brought a lot of insecurity and hurt feelings to me by way of recognizing what my relationship to the Nate family really is. For those of you who don't read my regular blog, the Nates are sort of our adopted family here in Cokeville. My husband was mission companions with Brian Nate, they are best friends, and Brian and his wife Becca were the main reason we moved to Cokeville. When we moved here Brian's parents (who we rent our house from) told us that they considered us one of the family and that's just how it was going to be. We eat Sunday dinner with them at least once a month, go to all the family birthday parties, celebrate all of our family birthdays with them, and we spend a fair amount of time hanging out.

It has been somewhat disappointing since we moved here because I really thought that Becca and I would spend nearly everyday together, in and out of each other's houses (we're next door neighbors) all the time. For awhile, in the first year, we shared a lot of meals together and I would go over there a lot just to chat. But several little things have just caused us not to spend as much time together. I often feel chained to my house because I feel guilty leaving it messy and yet instead of cleaning it I often just avoid it and take a nap. Becca is a homebody, she doesn't really like to get out much and sometimes I just want someone to come see me so I don't have to drag my kids anywhere or feel like I'm imposing. Our younger kids are at the age where they don't have the social skills to play well together for very long so when I go over to her house it often ends with our kids fighting and me feeling like I just need to leave.

Anyway, when Zoe died, I was in Houston visiting Dan and wasn't able to get home until 3 days after she died. I was so anxious to be with other people who loved her and to share in the family grieving process. But by the time I got back, everyone was kind of talked out and I really missed out on a lot of the conversations and special moments together. As preparations for the funeral were made, I felt excluded, but had to keep reminding myself that I wasn't family and it wasn't really my place to get as involved as I wanted to be. I was trying so hard to be sensitive and understanding of everyone's feelings, really needing to talk but understanding that everyone else was spent. So I just kind of bawled on my own and talked on the phone with my sister Becky and my BFF Lori. Then I started to feel really hurt about the fact that none of the Nates were trying to comfort me. That none of them acknowledged that Zoe was important to me, too. That I was feeling empty and lonely without her. All this time Dan was gone and I really didn't have a shoulder to cry on. Then I started to feel just mad, mad that the Nates said we were family, but really, we're not. That has been shown to me in the aftermath of Zoe's death. Yes, they care about us, but we are not really part of their inner circle.

Katie, Brian's sister, was Zoe's best friend. They saw each other every day and apart from Zoe's husband and 2 children, Katie has felt the emptiness of Zoe's absence more than anyone else. At first I tried to call or stop in every day to see how she was doing, but it soon turned into something that was just as much for me as it was for her. We would sometimes exercise together or I'd go find her at her mom's house and we'd chat, or we'd watch a movie with Zoe's sisters and mom who were here from England for 3 weeks following the funeral. I started feeling better and feeling like I had someone who was my everyday friend.

But in the last 10 days or so I stopped going over to Katie's every day because I was working on some newspaper articles and Dan was home for a couple of days, so I was pretty home bound. This week I finished all of that, but had to catch up on my housework because I'd been ignoring it for too long. So by today I was ready to get back in the swing of things. I went for a run while Dan was home to watch the kids and I stopped by Katie's. It was brief and I was hoping to spend some more time with her this afternoon, but another one of the Nate siblings, Lori, came to town for a visit, so they just kind of did their own thing.

Crap. This isn't just about Katie. It's about the realization I had tonight that all of the friendships I have in Cokeville seem to be all initiated by me. I'm sure I'm exaggerating and being a drama queen. But right now it feels like if I ever want to spend time with anyone, I have to initiate it. Rarely does anyone just stop by my house, I go to theirs. No one calls me for company. Most of the phone calls I get are usually just when someone needs something. People are just too busy with their families.

To be fair, I'm not as outgoing as I could be. I go through spurts where I try to get out a lot, go to the library and get involved with town activities, but other times I can be holed up in my house for days at a time. If I'm being honest, I still struggle with my depression, even though my meds are regulated pretty well. It's still just hard to force myself to keep moving sometimes, to keep doing, to think less and busy myself so I don't become melancholy. But a lot of the time I just want to escape to a long nap. And that is not a great tool for relieving loneliness.

I've definitely been overly sensitive about not being included in everyday activities with Katie and the rest of the Nates. The fact is that I didn't spend every day with them before Zoe died, so I shouldn't be offended about that same pattern continuing now. I guess I just have a more accute need for their company right now.

I just want to feel like someone needs me. I want to have a friend who just stops by unannounced and stays for 2 hours. Zoe had started doing that. I want someone to call me just to chat. I want someone to bring their kids over and make sugar cookies. I want someone to say, "Let's get a babysitter and drive to Montpelier or Logan." I want to feel welcome enough to take my loud, sometimes pain-in-the-butt kids to my friend's house and not feel like they're wondering when we're gonna leave. I want someone to do crafts with. I want someone to be excited about painting furniture with me. I want a friend I can go over and sweep the kitchen floor for while she washes dishes. I wish I had a house big enough to invite my friend and her kids over for a sleepover and stay up late eating junk and watching movies or playing games.

I wish I could put all of you in a genie bottle, keep it on my desk and rub on it whenever I need some company.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Is this the time of year you throw in the towel and say you'll start again in January?

Well Ladies, tomorrow is the end of another challenge. I hope you have all tried your best. I know things are busy, keeping a balance is hard and yes, the holidays are around the corner. Did I forget to mention cooler weather often brings out the desire for comfort food. Sometimes a few rough days can get us off track and then we decide to throw in the towel until the new year....

I'm here to entice you to stay on track and stay strong all the way through. So for this next challenge that will start on Monday I'm putting up a little incentive. Like the BLING?
I sure did, enough that I went back to H&M on a special trip just to get it for one of you.

Here are a few important things to note:
1) We will start on Monday and end Thursday November 4th. That is 18 days.
2) You will have 1 1/2 free days. That means that one day that you're good all day but then indulge in a dinner or desert doesn't completely blow your good effort at the beginning of the day. Questions on that? Contact me.
3)You can only claim 5 days of exercise in a week. Why the change? First, Most of us are church going people on Sunday who consider it a day of rest. I don't want people to exercise on Sunday that normally would not just to get points. Second, I believe your body needs rest. It's important for your muscles to be able to recover and for you to be able to have some flexibility in your schedule.
4) If there is someone that you haven't seen participating lately and you know them, see them, talk to them, please let them know. I don't want anyone giving up and being frustrated in January when they decide to start again. We are a little blogging family. Let's look after each other.

I can't wait to here from you and keep this ball rolling all the way through the holidays.

P.S. I don't plan on doing incentive every challenge but there will be more...keep going, hang in there.

Death By Halloween Candy

Every fall it starts. The endless amounts of candy you can find in the stores reminding us that the holidays are here and they are all about candy. Ok, their not, but you'd think that with the crazy amounts of candy you can find. Last year I did myself a favor and instead of being Miss. Frugal or Ms. Prepared by buying sale candy a head of time I waited until just before Halloween. Yes, this limits your choices, but you're giving it away right?

The one thing that I can't wait to buy are these delectable mini pumpkins. Candy corn has nothing over a fresh candy pumpkin. The great thing is that you can buy a small packages to keep things in check.
This year I've once again waited to buy candy but I purchased a much bigger bag of pumpkins....I've had them for almost two weeks but I think their days are limited. 5=140 calories, but they are empty calories. However, it's good not to deny yourself of simple pleasures or you'll find your self going crazy and going over board.
The last few nights I've wanted to go crazy more like this pumpkin and eat everything in sight. Salty, nutty, sweet, all sounds good.

The one thing I have to stay away from because I have no control are peanut butter cups. I love that they make pumpkin peanut butter cups because they have more peanut butter than a normal cup.....I could make myself just continually eating them. I will have one before they go away until next year but I'm hoping it will just be one.

What are your seasonal favorites? Do you allow yourself to indulge?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

You Know You're On a Diet If...

1. Packs of sandwich crackers taste like ambrosia (totally addicted to these things)
2. It's torture shopping where all the Halloween candy is sold, it makes you feel like a hungry street urchin in a Charles Dickens novel
3. You wolf down your veggies just to get them over with, so you can savor the main dish and have it be the last taste that lingers in your mouth (guilty)
4. You consider going to the gym for the third time, just so you can justify eating a tub of Ben & Jerry's
5. Just the thought of going to the gym for the third time makes you want to eat a tub of Ben & Jerry's
6. You know how many calories are in a tub of Ben & Jerry's and it makes you want to cry, but you still eat it while you are crying
7. You make two different dinners, one for you and one for the rest of the family
8. You fantasize about the bakery down the street, NOT the hot guy you see every day at the gym
9. You have a "goal" outfit in your closet (or you have 10, one for each diet you've been on)
10. You feel obligated to make guilty confessions on the HWHL blog when you fall off the wagon!

Throw in your own!

(P.S. Sorry, I'm not too witty at 10:30 pm, but I thought we needed a totally easy post, so we've all got something to comment on!)

How Much Halloween Candy Can You Get In a Pillowcase? - a humorous blog post I stumbled across. Obviously, this guy has never been to Utah, where you can crash several trunk-or-treats in church parking lots, or if they are crowded enough, you can wander through the same one three or four times.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I Am In Awe

I decided that if I was going to be a serious runner, that I'd better whittle down my time, so I could do a 5K in 30 minutes or less, eventually. So, while my son was at swim lessons this afternoon, I took myself over to one of the treadmills, and punched in a higher speed than I've done before - 4.6 mph. Laughable, I know, but I gotta start somewhere, and if I'm ever gonna break 30 min on a 5K, I'm going to have to start consistently running at a 6mph pace. Anyway, I did 4.6 mph for about 3/4 mile, then had to slow down to a 3.0 mph walk for 1/4 mile, then I punched in 5.0 mph, and did that for 1/2 mile, then walked 3.5 mph for 1/4 mile, then punched in 5.5 mph for 1/4 mile, and cooled down at 3.0 mph for 1/4 mile. I couldn't imagine doing a 6mph pace for 30 min, but then when I ran the 5K in Cokeville three months ago, I couldn't imagine running the entire 5K at all. So, hopefully, there will be progress in the future.

Which brings me to my point. For those of you {Marci} who can even run a half-marathon, forget how long it takes, I am in awe. I feel like a little kindergartener waving around their stick-figure drawing next to the masterpiece hanging on the wall. I am not worthy! I am not worthy! (Imagine prostrate bowing). But I don't find it discouraging. I just feel determined to improve my time.

Hey, everyone remind me, how many runners are there out there on the HWHL blog? My memory is horrible. Somebody with a better memory write a list of who runs races, or at least runs regularly for exercise. I would like to remember better. Just curious.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Death Run

Copied from my Battle Blog -

Well, since I couldn't do the 6K run in Utah, I decided to do my own here in Rock Springs by myself. I took my car and plotted out my route. I started out at home, drove until the trip odometer rolled over 1.88 miles, then turned around and drove home. As I drove back, I had butterflies in my stomach, "What am I thinking? I've never run on non-flat terrain. And I've never gone over 3 miles." But I was determined to do it, to finish, even if it was really hard. I was in and out, doing last minute little things, and as I passed Gil at the table, he said, "So, have you finished your Death Run yet?" See, my kids are noticing. Okay, 6K is kind of wimpy compared to a half-marathon or a full-blown marathon, but today, 6K is a Death Run. It feels almost noble. I got all my gear on, (Asics running shoes ready and me, all bundled up for the cold Wyoming wind) and got Dani to take pictures of me. I started the timer on my watch, and off I went!

Me, nervous and excited to go.

Now it's pics with my cell phone camera, passing the library on my way. I couldn't believe it at this point. I thought, "I'm doing this, I'm really doing this! I can keep running and not have to stop!" It did get harder, though, and a few times I lost focus and walked a few stops or stopped a few beats to take a pic with my cell phone. But, really, I pretty much ran the whole way. It seems incredible to me. I remember the 5K I walked/ran with Sue in Cokeville 2-1/2 months and 25 pounds ago. I definitely could run that one now, and probably beat "stroller chicks"! Kind of goofy, I know, to gauge yourself by "stroller chicks" in a race, but you gotta take your triumphs where you can find them, even the little ones.

The long road in front of me.

The biggest hill coming, where the pavement ends and the dirt and gravel begin.

I'm half way, and feeling awesome!!

I phoned Dani, and told her to hurry outside and take pics of me coming up the road. I had to take pics of her, too!

Victory!! My time? 57 minutes. I know, don't laugh, I'm a turtle, and it didn't help that I kept stopping and taking pics with my cell phone. But it still felt awesome!

Here's an updated pic, Audrey. Kind of scruffy, but you get the idea.

I like this close-up, all windblown. It says, "Active and lovin' it!"