Friday, June 15, 2012

The Commitments; Let's Get Real

I have mentioned in a past post that I am not satisfied with my current weight and physical condition.  It's not just my weight that is a concern, but my general well being has suffered too.  My feet take a pounding, not just because of the dance, but because of the lack of self care.  I take time every day to put on makeup and dress well, but I don't take as much time to do skin care or put sunscreen on my body.  During the past week, I have been trying to adopt a healthier eating and lifestyle plan.  I've also committed to taking  better care of my skin and the rest of my body.  
Purchase at Charming Charlie
I haven't lost any pounds yet, but I have noticed that the waistband of my pants are fitting more comfortably.  I am making a few major commitments to my health that I am sharing here.  

Maxi dress, T.J. Maxx....on the clearance rack for $7.00!
I've posted today's outfit before the pictures that are partially behind the changes I'm making.

It's scorching hot in the midwest today, so I went for comfort.  This dress is the epitome of comfort.  Although it's black, it's 100% cotton and very breathable.  I feel cute and somewhat pulled together despite my hair's frizz reaction to the 90 degree weather.

Layered necklaces, thrifted

Now, let's get real.  This is me; 10 lbs overweight.  I'm not comfortable.  Not just with the visual, but with the way I feel.  Clothes don't feel good.  Pants are tight in the thighs and butt, pinch at the waistband and gap in the back.  My thighs and butt don't match the rest of me.  This is actually not a terrible picture but if you got a glimpse of the backside, you might be afraid.  They don't call me Bubbles for nothing...hahaha.

I do love my stretch marks...they are my motherly battle scars.
This is my belly.  In this picture, it doesn't look terrible........

Don't love my "pinch an inch"
But I can pinch more than an inch.  More than two.  I'm also short waisted, so this creates a muffin top that feels uncomfortable!  This is not healthy.  Excess belly fat is a risk factor for heart disease and diabetes.  I have a clean bill of health right now, but if I don't do something to reverse this trend, I could be at great risk.  
 I know that some people may say that 10 lbs is nothing to sweat.  If you are 5'2" and small boned, it is.
This is my neck.  I know that this is part of aging and the loss of elasticity and collagen, but I believe that the extra weight has an effect as well.

Here are my commitments:

1.  STOP drinking POP.  Or soda as they say in some parts of the nation.  I did not drink pop for 10 years.  Before I gave it up the first time, I only drank diet pop.  When I started drinking it again about a year ago....still diet pop....I found myself craving it.  It was like, WHAM...and all of sudden I had to have it.  It has blossomed into a full time habit.  There are times when I believe I have a Pavlovian response to pop.....I stop in a fast food place to get a sandwich and I start craving (and probably salivating) pop before I even realize it.
I know its no good for my body, diet pop or not, it's terrible for the kidneys, the blood sugar and the skin.
Four days ago, I gave it up.  And my skin feels and looks better already.  
Part of this part of my commitment is to just eat better in general.  I've also been eating fruit and yogurt for breakfast and trying to eat more veggies, less processed foods.  I have so many food addictions; chips, cheese, chocolate, crackers....carbs, carbs, carbs.
I don't do the low carb diets.  I've analyzed them in some of the science/nutrition classes that I've taken and the popular low carb diets are often extreme.  We do need carbs for energy, just not the carbs that I like to eat.  Complex carbs, such as whole grains are crucial for energy.  I will be limiting my carbs to complex carbs and trying to balance the volume with protein and fruits and veggies.
I will be making better food choices from now on, and drinking a lot more water.  No more pop, no more processed foods.  I AM keeping dark chocolate.

I've been reading Jennifer Scott's book 'Lessons from Madame Chic' and it's had a huge impact on me...almost like a wake up call.

The author explains that French women engage in certain eating habits that helps them to maintain a healthy relationship with food and stay naturally slim.  For example, they don't snack. They don't eat standing up or walking.  They eat little or no processed food and all meals are treated as treasured occasion.

The book is actually full of wonderful tidbits about food, clothing and other elements of French style that help to create a rich life.   It has inspired me to make changes.

2.  Exercise; not just my body but my FACE too!  I do exercise when I dance, and I walk, but I need to up my game and increase the intensity.  I used to box, and that was great for my arms..but I gave it up.  I want to start boxing again.  I want to go back to the sweaty, smelly, Rocky style gym and punch my way to fitness.
I'm also doing some facial exercises.  I can't do anything about the loss of elasticity or collagen breakdown, but I can increase muscle tone that will help the "turkey neck" look more taut and toned.  
I've been doing some facial exercises for the last week and I swear I see a small difference.  My facial muscles ache too...just like the muscles in my limbs do when I work out.
I'm not sure how much this will do for me, but I'm willing to try it.  
I am not willing to try any type of surgical intervention, botox or other artificial interventions.  It's not healthy or natural.  It's not healthy or natural, either to look like a 20 year old in your 50's!  There is a beautiful grace in the face of a healthy, mature woman.
It's unfortunate that women have been sold the idea (and bought into) that we have to maintain an unrealistically young appearance.  
It's good to want to look our best, but we can look our best in a more natural, less invasive manner!  

3.  Take better care of my skin and my feet.  My feet are so rough, dry and cracked.  The skin on my legs tends to get a bit scaly.  I put so much effort into some of my beauty regime, and so little into others.  Sometimes, I'm in a hurry to get out of the house.  I take time to dress nicely, put on some makeup and style my hair (on most days, not today in the 90 plus degree temps!).  Why do I skip skin care? I'm in a hurry, so I skip some things, and in the end, I feel being in a rush did not benefit me in any way.  I put sunscreen on my face, why not the rest of me?  And why oh why, do I ignore my feet?  
I spared this blog a photo of my feet.  Suffice to say, they are awful.  I did some online research and learned that 100% natural shea butter worked into the feet at night and worn with socks can work wonders.  I'm committing to doing this every night.  I tried it last night; I soaked my feet in warm water with a drop of olive oil, massaged them with the 100% shea butter and wore socks to bed.  My feet are still need some love; but even after ONE NIGHT, I see a difference.  This might work.  I am committing.  
I think this is as important to my well being as dressing well is.  
I will keep you posted.


  1. Good Luck - it all seems very sensible and doable.

  2. Thank You....doable....but I need to really be disciplined..that's the hard part!

  3. Lisa--the dress looks wonderful on you and I can commiserate about the hair in the American midwest. Good luck with your resolutions--I find that I naturally lose a bit of weight in the summer time since there is always so much excellent fresh produce--veggies and fruits to eat. In the winter is when I really focus on my skin and I will often slather my feet with Mentholatum of all things, which keeps cold at bay.

  4. Terri,

    Thank you for the compliment. It's been tough to remain disciplined since I returned to school. I do a lot more sitting to accomplish all of the writing that I've been working on.

    Sitting begets more sitting!

    I am definitely eating more fruits and veggies.

    Terri, you really look naturally slim!


"When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect"--Mark Twain