Over the past few months I have really been actively working on making my life a healthier place. I joined a gym and I go at least 3 days a week but most weeks I go 5-6 days. I have been monitoring my calorie intake daily along with my exercise. I usually am under my calorie allotment, some days I'm way under, other days I'm under just a little. I am still working on figuring out my hunger because since I have increased my activity I notice that I'm not as hungry as I used to be. That may also be due to increasing my intake of water daily which I also track. I want to be proactive about my health and I would love to lose the rest of the weight that I have gained in the 9 years since becoming a mom.
However, I have reached a stubborn weight loss plateau. For at least a month, maybe more, I have been at anywhere between 195-198lbs. I can't seem to get below 195lbs at all. I have noticed that all my clothes are too big for me and that I am still losing inches off my legs, waist, arms and back. For some reason though that number on the scale not moving like I would like it too just irritates the heck out of me. Being under 200lbs is a nice change, this is the first summer in a long time since that has happened, but I'm still not quite ready for bikini season. I know that weight loss takes time, it doesn't happen over night. It took me almost 10 years to put the weight on, so I'm sure it's going to take time to get it all off. My scale and I fight every morning. It just won't give a girl a break. I roll my eyes and just sigh when I realize that despite all that cardio and strength training I'm doing, despite the reduced calories in my diet daily, I'm still not losing weight. ARRGH!
Writing down my exercise plan custom made for me by my trainer on my calendar really helped me to see each day during the week what I will be doing. On the days that I have more strength training than others I know to get plenty of rest the night before. I have also discovered that if I eat between 400-460 calories at breakfast, wait an hour, then go work out that I can get through my workout without feeling tired or puny. Recently at the gym I have been able to up the weight on all my leg workouts and I can do a full 20 reps on every machine I use. When I first started going to the gym (almost a month ago), I was barely able to do 10 reps when working on my arms and shoulders. My chest is still a weak spot that I struggle with and I always feel so gimpy when I see women in there who are benching or using huge amounts of weight and I'm standing there barely able to lift a 7.5lbs dumbbell 20 times. However, I have to start somewhere, I won't get stronger if I don't start small and build the muscle in order to be able to lift heavier weight.
My cardio has always been a strong point with me. I usually alternate between the elliptical machine on hill intervals, the treadmill on either hill intervals or jogging and the arc trainer on the program that goes from low resistance to high resistance at an incline. It gives my legs a fantastic workout and I can feel it in my muscles afterwards, it also helps me to practice my breathing and strengthening of my lungs and heart. I still have an issue with breathing while I jog. I'm not sure if it's due to weak lungs or if it's my body protesting, but when I jog it feels as if there is a weight on my chest and it's hard to get a good breathing patterns. I'm working on it, but so far the longest I've been able to stand it is for 10 minutes. I guess that's not bad, considering that I never thought I would see myself jogging on a treadmill or even considering jogging on my walking trails that I do so enjoy.
I still have days when I get the blahs. Since I do have a history of depression I'm sure that body changes which cause chemical changes and hormone changes can also trigger depression issues. These days don't happen near as often and I haven't had to take medication for depression or anxiety in about a year now. I just know that when those days come, to go workout then come home and relax by either watching some entertaining television, reading my favorite book series or playing on my computer if my brain will allow me to focus long enough to not get bored. If all else fails I always have some dark chocolate almond milk in the fridge and it does seem to help my moods. I'm not sure if that is psychosomatic or not but I'll take it!
I have found that eating healthy and incorporating fresh vegetables and fruits into my diet more is not cheap! Nor are the gluten free pre-packaged foods! I mean a loaf of gluten free bread is over $6 a loaf, however it does last me about a week if not longer. I just hate going to my favorite health food store and dropping $120 on a week's worth of food for me! That just seems retarded. I have a bad habit also about grabbing veggies and not paying attention to their weight. I got over $12 worth of beets the last shopping trip because they were priced by the pound, not per beet. (Whoa!) I have definitely learned it is cheaper to eat unhealthy pre-packaged foods and crap. However I can't eat like that anymore, my body won't allow it. So I invest in my health and pay what I have to in order to be able to have 3 meals a day and snacks that I enjoy and are tasty.
On a funny note...since I discovered that I also have a reaction to coffee that is similar to what I experience when I eat gluten, my husband went online and looked to see if they have gluten free coffee. He found a site which offers gluten free caffeine free coffee substitute http://www.ersatzcoffee.com/. We ordered a trial size of the brew and I was so excited when I got it in the mail. I brewed it up the next morning. It brews more like tea than coffee, not coffee pot needed, just add hot water and let steep for 5 minutes. I added creamer and Splenda and sat down to enjoy my cup of "coffee". I didn't like it. There was nothing wrong with it, it tasted just like coffee, a light brew. However, since I haven't had coffee in so long it plain tasted nasty to me. The same way that soda does when on occasion I have some of that. Oh well, now I know that me and coffee have had to end our relationship and I will save so much money not being able to sneak to Starbucks when I get spare cash!