Thursday, December 9, 2010

These Boots Are Made For... Me!

Gentle Readers,

This is a momentous day.

As you perhaps know, I like things.  I like clothes.  I like shoes.  I like furniture.  I like nice paper products.  I like cute dishes.  I would like a KitchenAid Artisan Series Tilt Head Stand Mixer in navy (in case Santa reads my fledgling blog).  And I love tall boots.

I first fell in love with tall boots in high school, when my friends on the drill team got to wear white go-gos with their uniforms.  In college, I had what I considered to be a rockin' pair of black platform-heeled cfm's (I think they actually were sort of matronly Nine West numbers from DSW, but I liked 'em).  And those black platforms are where my love affair stalled... on very sad, wistful terms.

You see where I am going with this.

My legs got too fat for tall boots.  Unless they were made of that weird, stretchy pleather or had unsightly elastic inserts, there was no way they would zip up my tree trunks.  I have always had a more rubust rear section and "shapely" calves, and I have learned to appreciate that over the years (I really do like my butt and legs and I do not mind telling you that Sir Mix-A-Lot has a lot to do with it).

Still, every time I saw a stylish San Franciscan wearing dark jeans tucked into a pair of camel-colored boots, I seethed with jealousy and lamented my legs. (I don't care if your anaconda wants some, I want boots!)  Despite the power my legs grant me to inflict certain ass-kicking defeats on anyone who crosses me, my prefrontal cortex began concocting a silent campaign of dissent against my calves and their overt effort to keep me out of fitted boots that rose above mid-shin.

Confession:  I even busted the zipper on a pair of "extended calf" models from J. Crew back in 2003.

Friends, those sad days are over.

Today, this happened.

That's right. Those are tall boots.  With a zipper in the back.  With not a stitch of elastic.
I first tried-on these little numbers back in August, when my sister was visiting.  I had been coveting them for a couple of weeks and thought, "Maybe they will zip..." And they did not.  In fact, they were about two or three inches from zipping.  I walked around the store with them halfway unzipped and the sweet boy who was helping me said, "They look great!" Until I turned around and showed him the gaping zipper in the back.  Fail.

So, it was a bit of a dare when I ordered these very boots online back in October.  Luckily, they were back-ordered so I had to wait until today -- December 8, the year of our Lord 2010 -- for them to arrive and endure the ultimate test of my steely, yet shrinking, calves.

Friends, I wasted no time.  I picked the package up from the mailroom at work, brought the box to my desk, tore open the package, pulled all the stuffing out of the boots like it was 1984 and I was uncovering the last Cabbage Patch Doll and I slid those puppies on.  Let me recap what happened next.

Once again, the proof.  Aren't you crazy about the contrasting orangey-red on the tape? (Fun Fact: People here in the Bay Area call it  International Orange.)

There's not much to this post in the way of insight.  It's just a celebration.  I know the boots don't go with this outfit, but it's what I wore to work and I just had to put on the boots as soon as I got home.  And btw, that skirt has been in my closet for 5 years and today's the first time it fit.  I love these little victories.

Monday, December 6, 2010

So Long, Old Friends

Can you guess what that box contains?  That's right.  It's my fat clothes.  They are going to Goodwill (at least the ones that don't have holes worn into them are).

This is no ordinary winter cleaning.  These aren't just clothes I haven't worn in a few months.  I wore that black and pink dress on the top of the heap last Thursday.  These are clothes that are a smidge too big... and this giveaway expresses an uneasy confidence that those clothes will only get baggier.  People, this is monumental for me.  In the past, I have treasured-away my fat clothes because I was confident (not uneasily) I would need them again.

So, if keeping my stretchy/no waistband fat clothes in the past has created a self-fulfilling prophecy in which I needed the fat clothes again... maybe I can created a different prophecy this time by getting rid of the fat clothes.  Maybe I can create a future in which I won't need them hiding in my closet, waiting to be called into service.

A couple of other thoughts: WW just changed to the new PointsPlus system, and it is a true adjustment for me.  I will post more later about how I need to change to work this new program.  It's exciting and scary at the same time!

And finally, my latest stats:

Weight on 12/04/10: 192
Pounds lost this week: -0.8
Total loss since 5/01/10: -64.4

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Incident With The Hummus & The Sofa

In spite of everything I know to be true, it's sometimes tough to tell if I've made real changes over the past several months.  For example: when I sit on my sofa at the end of a particularly stressful day and eat an entire tub of hummus with an entire bag of baby carrots, it doesn't feel that different from the days when I sat on my sofa and ate an entire Big Mac Extra Value Meal followed by a 6-piece order of Chicken McNuggets (for variety).  I am a bit ashamed to admit I had a hummus binge last week that wrecked me for a day or so and left me doubting my ability to make real changes.

So, the binge and the self-loathing it allowed felt very familiar to me.  What was different was what happened about 36 hours after the binge.  I forgave myself.  I realized that people slip.  I admitted that, while a binge is definitely cause for concern for people like me, a binge on hummus and carrots is so much better than a binge on pizza and milkshakes.

Further proof that something, indeed, is different: 2 days after the incident with the hummus and the sofa, I ran 2 laps around Lake Merritt (6.2 miles).  And 3 days after that run, I did a 10k (also 6.2 miles) in Golden Gate Park.  w00t!  My time wasn't amazing: I finished in 1:13:57, which works out to about 12 minutes per mile.  The great thing is that I finished, I didn't stop running the entire time and I felt pretty great afterward.  See?  I almost look stoned in this photo. (I assure you, I am not.)

The most amazing thing about becoming more fit isn't watching the number on the scale drop or buying a new wardrobe, but moving through the world more effortlessly.  My burden is lighter, in spirit, body and mind.  I find that I am a more attentive friend, a more caring daughter and a more focused & dedicated employee when my thoughts aren't dominated by the heft of what I am carrying.

And best of all, despite that late-night encounter with garbanzo beans, I lost 3.4 pounds last week. Phew!

Monday, November 1, 2010


I started Weight Watchers on May 1, 2010 and I weighed 256.4 pounds.
During my last weigh-in on October 30, 2010 I weighed 198.6.
I have lost 57.8 pounds since May 1, an average of 2.2 pounds a week.

I am 5'8" and Weight Watchers puts my healthy range at 132-164.  I think I may aim for 140 as my ultimate goal, but who knows.  As I get closer to 164 I may feel that the 160's are better for me.  I intend to post some photos of me then/now ASAP but -- like so many who are uncomfortable in their own skin -- I am not sure I have any of me at my heaviest.

More Stuff
    It took me until I was 35 years old and more than 100 pounds over my ideal weight to realize I needed to make a change and stick with it.  I have been fat for a long, long time and before I was fat I thought I was fat and called myself fat (not the way I am calling myself fat now but in the disgusted way teenagers call themselves fat while zipping up size 6 jeans).

    So, for me, becoming 100+ pounds overweight is a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy, growing from all that crazy-talk I subjected myself to beginning at puberty.

    I really started to balloon about 4 years ago, when I began graduate school.  Stressed out over a master's thesis?  Have a Slim Jim and an It's It!  I was about 30 pounds overweight when I began graduate school.  I think I probably gained about 50 pounds during the course of my 2-year program and maybe another 20 or 25 in the 2 years since then.  I got so big, people no longer recognized me.  It's totally understandable because I didn't recognize myself, either.

    Making Room For Others
      I am no yoga guru, but there is one teacher in San Francisco whom I love.  When we're trying to get twistier or bendier, she often tells us to inhale and see if we can make room to go deeper.  So, I kind of feel like that's what I am doing by losing weight: I am inhaling some self-confidence and creating space in my life.  I actually have thoughts other than "Am I the fattest person at this bar?"  I now have more room in my head to think things like, "That woman with an armful of grocery bags, pushing her twins in a stroller, might appreciate it if I held the door for her."

      So, I am committing to blogging twice a week.  On Sundays I will share information about my weekly weigh-in and about the choices I made during the week.  Wednesdays will be sort of a mid-week accountability project/weight loss hodgepodge.

      Guess that's all for now.  More Wednesday!