I Made it a Whole Day

Good news, guys. I mostly did ok yesterday.  I did not hit my steps goal, but I did stay within my calories AND got in all my water.  It seems lame to get excited about stuff like this, but I’m going to cling to this FitBit app until I either die or create new habits.  What are those habits going to be?  I don’t know what will stick, but here is my game plan for today.

6:30 AM

Alarm goes off.  Groggily roll over and turn it off. Go back to sleep.

7:15 AM

Second alarm goes off.  Pick up phone and diddle around on the internet.  Realize I never set my FitBit to sleep mode last night. Not sure what to do with the sleep information anyway. Keeping internetting.

7:28 AM

Sister walks in and clearly sees me on my phone.  She still acts as if I’m asleep and yells at me to wake up.  I calmly explain how bitchy she is being. She gets in the shower. I resign myself to not having a morning shower.  Afternoon shower will have to do.

7:45 AM

Sister opens the door. I haven’t moved any muscles except those that help me scroll through Facebook. Sister is livid. She storms off.

7:52 AM

I make my way downstairs, fully dressed and ready to go.  Grab LUNCH I PACKED LAST NIGHT and the bag of groceries I need for work. We are sure to be late.

8:40 AM

Late to work.  No one says anthing. Work work work.

9:00 AM

I eat the oatmeal I keep in my drawer at work.  Apparently breakfast is important.

Sometime between 9 and 10 AM

I add a food to FitBit’s database.  Wish adding food on the app was more straightforward.  They should call Lose It and find out what they are doing.

10:50 AM

Decide to write this post.

10:59 AM

Realize this post is probably boring or weird, but continue writing.

12:00 PM

After a meeting, go downstairs and eat lunch at my desk.  Also, do “work.”

1:00 PM

Leave the building for my official lunch break and see how many 1 mile loops I can make in 45 minutes.  Lust after the cool houses in the neighborhood around my office. Resign myself to being #foreverpoor.

Walking During Lunch - SuburbanFervor

1:45 – 5:00 PM

Do more “work.” Obsessively check FitBit despite knowing that nothing has changed because I’ve been sitting the entire time.

5:00 PM to Whenever I Saunter Up to Bed

Drive home. Try to determine if I can have the new Evol street tacos I bought last night and some kind of strategic dessert.  Pace around my house until I hit 10k steps.  Try to convince Alex to either walk the dogs with me or get him to do some kind of chore.  Probably do none of these things and binge watch the first season of The Unbreakable Kimmie Schmidt again because Alex hasn’t seen it.  Sink into bed and dream about weird shit, like always.

The take aways from this very strange post are that I packed a lunch for work (something I haven’t done in a while) and that I’m going to walk a bunch at lunch.  The weather in Chicago is supposed to hit 60 degrees so I’ll be going on my first lunch walk of the year.

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Please, Help Me with This Horsecrap

Hi, my name is Katie and I have a problem.

It’s an eating and laziness problem. Here’s the thing: I love to eat a lot of food and have little to no perseverance.  I also have a condition called PCOS.  I honestly don’t know if that contributes to my weight gain or my weight contributes to it.  Either way, I’m not doing everything I can to combat it.  Also, I am fairly certain that I’m teetering on the edge of this causing other serious health problems.  Before, I was just contending with it being inconvenient to go clothes shopping.  Now, more physical activities are getting difficult and I’m beginning to realize that I’m not filled with boundless abilities like I was as a teenager.  So this all needs to change, that much is obvious. How, though?  Please don’t start in with the, “eat right and work out.”  That much is also obvious.  The question is how do I go from hella overweight to healthy specifically? What works and what doesn’t work?

Here are the things I know that don’t work:

  1. Assuming I’m going to get enough physical activity during my current average day.
  2. Eating whatever I feel like, consequences be damned.
  3. Not talking to people about my goals.
  4. Not keeping track of how I’m feeling.
  5. Not reaching out to people who have been in my shoes and got out of this lifestyle.

Since I know these things don’t work, I can’t keep doing them.  I think, to begin, I should try doing the opposite.

  1. Start pushing myself to get in more activity.  I weigh a fricken boatload.  I don’t really feel comfortable sharing the exact number right now, but trust me when I say it is higher than any human should weigh.  This leads me to believe that jumping into an intense work out regimen would probs be kind of bad for me.  I have a FitBit Flex that I wear almost all the time.  Spoiler alert: I’m going to be wearing it all the time from now on.  I’ve been using it for almost a year and I honestly really like it.  It keeps pretty accurate measure of how many steps I take and how well I sleep.  The starting step goal on it is 10,000.  I’ve hit or exceeded that number exactly 3 times. My goal is to hit 10k steps a day for the next 3 months.  If you use FitBit in any capacity, feel free to add me! A requirement for me to do my job is to be sitting pretty much the whole day and the competition is a great motivator.

    Using FitBit to get a hold of my lifestyle.
    Using FitBit to get a hold of my lifestyle.
  2. Oh, food, you fickle bitch.  I love eating and trying new food and I’m never going to be one of those “clean eating” people.  It just isn’t realistic for me.  First off, this is America.  Also, I live in the Midwest.  Third, my neighborhood is off of a stretch of road called Restaurant Row. Great food literally surrounds me in large quantities and I’m not interested in completely letting that go.  That being said, keeping on with what I’m doing would just be damn stupid.  I have a few strategies that I am going to start implementing to try to curb the ridiculous food habits I have. Most importantly, way way way less eating out. Which brings me to my next point, because I never go out alone.Setting weight loss goals and being realistic about achieving them.
  3. I need to draft a team.   You think I’m the only person in my house who needs to reconsider their lifestyle? No, honey. I need to tell the people around me about the changes that are happening and why they are happening.  We all need to be a part of prepping, cooking, and shopping for food.  We all need to let me browse through Target/Ikea/The Mall as long as I want so I can get my steps in. Gone are the days of instant gratification.  I need them to be there for me when I really want some super delicious deep dish pizza.Eating right realistically.  Can I do it?
  4. Maybe instead of eating my feelings about eating my feelings, I could just blog about it.  Like, “Oh man, I couldn’t find a dress to wear and I’m really upset,” instead of eating a doughnut.  This cyclical shit is aggravating.  I feel a little better just for having written that here. I feel a lot better by having written everything above this sentence.  Putting it out there in the world and working out my thoughts here is pretty therapeutic.  I know the internet is judgy, but let’s just be better here, ok?Setting realistic goals and achieving them.
  5. As much as people love to say how fat America is, the truth is that there are a ton of people out there dedicated to fitness and health.  Many of those people have been where I am now and have turned their health around.  I need those people leaving me tips and being my sherpas through what will hopefully be the most challenging part of my life.  Because on those days when you’ve worked so hard for something and you feel like the results aren’t there (and I’ve experienced this) you need the person who worked through it to tell you that not all is in vain.

In my quest to pursue these goals, I’ll be trying a bunch of different stuff and I’ll be posting it all here (and probably some stuff here and some real time stuff here). Do you have suggestions? Have you been where I am now? Talk to me!

SSC: Selfies and Body Image

It probably doesn’t surprise anyone when they hear that weight gain or obesity are often accompanied by self image and confidence issues.  For me it has always been a cycle of one causing the other causing the other.  The most contentious symptom of all of it is that I hate and often refuse to get my picture taken.  This issue is what the people in my life focus on the most.  I have maybe 3 pictures of my boyfriend and I together in 5 years. I hate family photos.

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In an effort to slow/stop the cycle of self-loathing leading to eating leading to more self-loathing, I have been trying to take more photos with me in them and sharing those pictures with friends and family.  This happens mostly in Snapchat because the pictures aren’t going to anyone I don’t want and they can only be viewed for a short period of time.  I’ve occasionally Instagrammed a photo of myself, but they make me nervous.

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I don’t think I’m going to become some Kim Kardashian level selfie taker, but so far I’ve gotten noticeably more comfortable with having my photo taken. I’m hoping that this little confidence boost will curb some of my emotional eating problems.  I know what I’m doing when I’m doing it.  It’s kind of like emotional turmoil that I’m indulging in, but simultaneously indulging in food.  Merica.

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This is my little attempt at healing some psychological issues, but I know the real work comes with lifestyle changes. It just seems like not a lot of people talk about working on yourself emotionally in addition to the physical stuff.  Obviously I still have a lot to change, but first let me take a #selfie.

SSC: Katie’s Attempts at Self-Control

My sister and I might pop in with a few updates here and there, but today I want to talk about self-control and how terrible I am at it.

When you are my size (20) there are lots of things that toss you onto the Struggle Bus. Self-control is my biggest problem.  Oh Lord, how I struggle with it. I have almost no self-control and it’s something that I try to work on all the time.  I am a dreamer and I dream big. When I start something, I go all in…and lose interest and steam.  Bearing that in mind, I wanted to start this challenge small and build up. I also wanted new habits to coincide with my new job.  I thought that the first thing I should do is start drinking an appropriate amount of water. I have probably spent the last 10 years super dehydrated, and since the first thing every article and “expert” says about weight loss is to drink water I decided to get to it. I bought this water bottle (mostly because I just liked it, not because I didn’t have any). I liked that I can twist off the top 1/3 of the bottle to add ice and it helps it fit into the dishwasher.  The bottom portion holds about 20 ounces so it’s easy for me to keep track of how much I get in.

 Water Bottle

Also, my office has this water fountain that I get nerdily giddy about everyday.  It isn’t just an ordinary water fountain that you fight with to fill up your water bottle because the stream is so short that you can never get it actually full.  No, my friends. This thing is made to fill up your personal beverage containers. It also tallies how many plastic water bottles your facility is saving on a little screen at the top. As of this posting, our office has saved over 3000 bottles in a about 2 months.

fancy gif

I recently read that you should drink half your weight in ounces and +20 ounces if you are trying to lose weight.  I thought that was a bag of crock (ie. crock of shit, if you aren’t my sister).  Wasn’t it supposed to be 64 ounces?  Apparently no, it can be anything from 1/2 to 1 ounce of water per pound you weigh.  So I’m looking at a lot of water here.

The other tactic I’m using to curb my desires is to keep food at work.  My new job (oh yeah, I got a new job) has given me a work space with way more storage than I need.  I have 2 huge drawers basically just there to look like I keep files, but they only hold my purse and snacks.  I shoot for healthy snacks that will keep me full or at least bridge the gap between meals so I don’t overdo it when I finally get to eat.  Here is a shot of my drawer as of today.

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I keep the oatmeal to have for breakfasts.  I just cook it in my mug and rinse the mug when I’m done. That usually lasts me until lunch.   After lunch, I get bored and probably dehydrated so I want to snack on something.  I try to make this as convenient and perhaps fake-decadent as possible. So I have some Dark Mocha Almond Kashi bars and pineapple cups.  The apple is left over from my lunch at Panera. I want to make all of this as enjoyable as possible because I often find joy in eating and most of the time I’m enjoying food that is not that healthy. So if I make it so I don’t feel like I’m missing out, I might stick with this long enough to make it a habit.

I also keep cold medicine because receptionists get all the germs from all the visitors and only a select few callers enjoy speaking to Darth Vader.

One of the biggest quandaries I face when thinking about losing weight is making it click.  I have always wanted to ask people who have lost large amounts (or maybe any amount) how and when they decided to do it for real. What changed?  I’ve gone through phases where I commit myself and then lose steam and go back to my bad habits. I really don’t want to do that anymore.

So how about you?  What healthy habits have you picked up? What are you struggling with right now? I’m struggling with not getting Chipotle.  Futile, I know.

Removing 30 Year Old Carpet

Yesterday afternoon, as my workday was winding down, I was browsing Pinterest.  Sometimes while I browse, a spark of inspiration hits and I search around for similar ideas.  So, as it often does, inspiration struck and I decided to find out exactly what I could do about the disgusting carpet that covers the floors in most of my home.  I have seen a few people laying plywood down and staining it like you would hardwoods.  Why put plywood down over plywood? So I searched for “stained plywood subfloors” and saw that there are quite a few people out there who have tried it, but none ever put together a clear, concise, and well documented tutorial of it.  So maybe I will. Later.

The whole reason I was browsing Pinterest was because I could not stand the carpet on the first floor for another day.  There is just nothing you can do about decades of poorly trained pets and hoarders.  The carpet could not be helped by any amount of shampooing (despite the denial I had closeted myself in the last 2 years).  When my sister came in to pick me up from work, I ran the idea of staining the subfloors past her.  She was in.

We went home, changed, and moved out all the furniture.  We went from this:

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To this:

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The dogs had no idea what to do.  Where did all our comfy couches go?  I left to go to the hardware store for supplies, and my sister got to ripping up the carpet.  An hour later, I came home to find all the carpet rolled up in the garage.  Our house has never looked better. Amiright?

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Under the carpet we found a little set of instructions (which you can see in the background of the photo above) for the carpet from when it was originally installed – in 1984.  Officially making our carpet 30 years old. That is older than I am. That is too old for carpet. So. Disgusting.  I called my bfff, Liz, and her husband, Bryan, to see if they wanted to sacrifice their Thursday night to come and rip up staples with me.  They agreed. It took 4 of us about 2 hours to rip up all the tack strips, staples, and nails.  Note to everyone considering this project: wear safety gloves and work in a well ventilated area. This is a rusty nails and dust kind of job.

Once everything had been pulled up,  we swept as much as we could.  So much dust and dirt under those carpets. For reals, they just aren’t sanitary.  As you can probably see, there was also a ton of staining. The line of dark stains just behind the trashcan are thanks to this adorable pup:

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Those stains line up with the back of the couch, her favorite indoor pee spot.  To get rid of the stains and accompanying odor, I poured some of this all over the stains, let it sit for a few minutes and dabbed it up with some paper towels.  In the morning it had all dried and the stains were much lighter.  Hopefully after some sanding, they’ll be gone.  If not, I got a really dark stain to go over the floors.

OUT! PetCare Oxy-Fast Stain & Odor Remover 32 oz

 

I know this might sound insane, but the carpet could not stay any longer and I do not have the budget to put down new flooring right now.   We have guests coming to stay with us next week right before we go on a trip, so this needs to get done this weekend.  Wish me luck!

Have you ever started a project impulsively?