Keeping Spirits Up

I’m here to count some blessings, because it’s cloudy outside, and being a Colorado native, my well-being takes a nosedive on the rare cloudy days we have. I’ve been on the brink of tears for 17 hours, and I think it’s primarily barometric.

I bought a new scale. There’s something in me that doesn’t trust digital scales. I’m not sure what that’s about, but I bought a new old-school scale. It’s also giving me a range, but it’s a range of 3 or so pounds, not 20-50, which is what I was getting off my last scale (which I had for 15 years and four moves, and which I’m now donating, like someone else wants a scale that weighs heavy and with a lack of specificity). And the new scale is saying that the weight I’ve been pretty sure I’ve been gaining since the move? Fictional. I got on my old scale yesterday and it said I was up 7 pounds or so (depending on what reading I accepted as valid.) This morning, on the new scale? Notsomuch. I could be a couple of pounds heavier, or a pound or two lighter than during the move, but the reading says I’m basically where I was.

I’m choosing to see this as a kickstart to keeping the changed habits, rather than a sign that I don’t need to change my habits. For the last two days, I’ve tracked calories, and when I found that I was short on steps (despite having walked the pup both nights), I did a 20-minute workout at home while we watched TV. I’ve also packed breakfasts and snacks and lunches and not hit the candy bowl at all. I recorded the 7 lb-weight gain in LoseIt!, the app I use to track calories, yesterday, so I’m going to tell myself that I gained the 7 lbs and that my efforts resulted in me losing them quickly. Not because I like to lie to myself, but because when I usually change my behavior, I usually do a big change like no refined carbs, which gives me a kickstart of several pounds lost quickly, which motivates me to keep going.

This time, I’m making a more moderate change— continuing to eat carbs but shifting to fewer of them, more whole grains, less refined sugars, more exercise. I expect weight loss to be slower, but know that the change is worthwhile, both for me, and as an example for mom, who also needs to moderate some behaviors for health reasons. She’s seeing me working out in the evenings—simple workouts without equipment—and in the past, that’s inspired her to be more active. I also made sure that I prepared some snacks and grab-and-go breakfasts and that she knew she was welcome to them, too, because one of the habits her doctor has asked her to get better about was eating breakfast sooner, and being sure it included more protein. So I made egg cups (basically an omelet in a muffin cup that you cook and then freeze for microwaveable breakfasts) and steel-cut oats with vanilla, cherries, and hazelnuts.

My efforts to go to bed earlier are resulting in more sleep, but honestly, the change is pretty challenging and I’ve been a snooze-bunny all week (hitting the snooze button more than usual, which has made me late the last getting out the door, the last couple of days.) I’ve heard that it’s harder to wake up if you’re in the middle of a 90-minute sleep cycle, and it makes sense that if I was getting 6 hours of sleep before, going to bed 45 minutes or an hour earlier would put me at a point where I’d be especially groggy, even though I’m better-rested overall (and starting to feel that). With that said, I think it would be difficult for me to move my bedtime up another 30-45 minutes, so I’m wondering if I could get some traction by moving my alarm back by 15 minutes and bedtime up 15 minutes. Either that, or be more of a stickler for getting up, even when I’m groggy. God knows that I don’t expect a lot of myself mentally at that time of day, anyway. I’m already laying my clothes out the night before, automating as much of my morning as possible…

And the sun has come out and the tears are at bay, for the moment.

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