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Mar. 10th, 2008


New post.....

Can be found at http://flamingogirl.com/blog :)

Feb. 26th, 2008

ode to amelie

Tummy pain & Starting a new blog, please please visit

I think I mentioned here once before that I was thinking of creating a website, some place I can post more of my photos and attempts at art, as well as stuff about my daily life. Eventually I will probably even post my dieting ups and downs there too. The main part of the site is still under construction but the blog section is up now. I'd love it if everyone who watches me would visit there(and say hi!:). It doesn't have a lot of stuff up yet, just a couple of posts, but as I get more time I will upload more stuff. I will still post dieting stuff here for awhile( & I'll keep this journal open so I can still watch everyone), but eventually  down the road I plan to do all my blogging just at the one site.

A Fine romance..Flamingo Girl's Blog (had to choose a different username because a happy wife. com is already taken, so I've gone with flamingogirl.com since flamingo was a nickname my husband gave me years ago. Gonna miss my happy wife name though :( )

Okay, dieting/health update: 

Remember in my last post where I mentioned having a horrible pain attack after eating a creamy pasta dish?It was the first of several absolutely awful attacks and I found out that I have gallstones. The doctors (and my family) are insisting I have my gallbladder removed. I'm kind of down about that. I've never had real surgery before (not counting wisdom teeth removal) and I've always been kind of proud about that. It makes me a little nervous too. It's a one in a million chance anything could go wrong with the surgery but I still worry a little. How ironic is it that I get on a health kick, giving up most of my favorite junk foods, and NOW I get sick? I was so pleased when I had blood work & a physical a few months ago and everything came back great. I'd kind of thought that I'd gotten away with all the abuse I've done to my body, that there wouldn't be consequences. Guess I wasn't as lucky as I'd thought. Even though the doctor said it's probably heriditary since so many of my family members have had to have their gall bladders removed, I still think I wouldn't be having problems if I weren't so overweight. I probably wouldn't even have the surgery if it were just up to me. I'd just deal with the pain attacks and try to stick with the (incredibly) low fat diet that the doctors put me on. But my husband and family really think I need the surgery and the doctors do to, so I'm listening to them. I should get a call this week from the surgeon's office to schedule the surgery. Joy.

P.S. Squilla, I've tried leaving comments at your blog but for some reason they never show up. Just wanted to say I hope all is well with you and I loved your most recent post!!

Feb. 4th, 2008



I ate a very rich heavy pasta with a cream sauce today and the Fates have punished me. It's 2:30 in the morning and my tummy is killing me :(. I guess this will teach me to go off of my plan. 

Feb. 1st, 2008


One month down, A lifetime to go.

Well, my husband and I have been eating our low cholesterol vegetarian food for one month now. I can honestly say I haven't had a single food binge and in fact haven't "cheated".  I could still make big improvements, give up my handful of pretzels and snack on carrots more often, but I am moving in that direction. I'd give myself a good solid B, possibly even a B+ for the way I've eaten in January. I'm quite proud I've made it an entire month without eating meat, or junk food or soda. And we've drastically reduced our restaurant visit which should benefit our pocketbook as well.

I'm really pleased with the lifestyle changes I'm making. I don't really want to call it a diet because to me diet means obsessing over calories and depriving myself. I'm not doing that now, though I am even more careful about what I eat now then I ever was when I followed a diet. I suppose the big difference is that now I'm being very mindful of healthful content in my diet, instead of just obsessing over calorie intake. I'm trying so hard to change my mindset and focus on healthfulness. Diets have never had longterm effect. I've managed to lose a hundred pounds on one diet, 80 pounds on another, 50 pounds on 3 different occassions and yet I have always put it back on because all I obsessed over was cutting down calories and not in permanently changing my eating habits. So this time I'm trying a different approach. I am doing healthy things just to be healthy and not simply as a temporary fix to lose some weight. It's so hard to change my thinking though. Early in the month I was weighing myself daily to see if I'd managed to lose anything, and then getting depressed when the scale hardly budged. Then I realized that getting worked up about the scale was pointless. Regardless of what the scale says I still have to eat healthy & stick with my choice to be vegetarian. If I never lose another pound, I still have to eat veggies instead of cheeseburgers. And really, it's not too bad. My cravings for meat and junk food are fading. It just takes time. I feel better now that I'm not over eating and filling myself with nasty things. Basically everything is going well, though a part of me still wishes I could just wake up tomorrow morning and discovered I've turned into a lean, strong uber healthy vegan kickboxing figure skating champion with a body like Carmen Electra. One can always dream!

Jan. 23rd, 2008

back to back nick nora

Mind Control

I've spent most of my life feeling as if I were at war with my body, blaming it for my weight issues and unhealthiness. But lately I've come to realize that my body isn't the problem. My body doesn't actually want to be stuffed full of junk food. My body doesn't really love laying around and atrophying. In fact my body only wants enough food to keep it functioning and it actually likes to be moved around on occasion. Unfortunately  I've spent my entire life refusing to listen to the subtle signals my body sends and have instead been guiding myself by the pleasure seeking, instant gratification loving voice of my subconcious, my id. It's the quiet but insistent little voice that whispers to me "Resse's Peanut Butter Cups sure sound yummy." and then before I even realize what's happening I'm checking out of the grocery store with candy bars, soda & all the junk food I can carry. Now that I'm working to create a healthier lifestyle I'm also trying to reprogram my thinking. For far too long I've given in to what is easy, what feels good in the moment, instead of doing what I know is right & good for me. I'm trying to quiet those urges for bad things and strengthen my desire for all the "healthy stuff".  At 35 I'm trying to teach myself moderation and consistent discipline/self control (not just deprivation to achieve the loss of 10 lbs, but a permanent change towards a healthy lifestyle). It sure ain't easy!!!  So far this month I've done really well. When bad thoughts urging me to eat things I shouldn't pop into my head I immediately jump on them and start explaining to myself why those thoughts are a bad idea and talking myself out of them. Sometimes it's quite a mental wrestling match but so far I'm winning. My craving this week has been for fried chicken. What I wouldn't give for some KFC! But I'm not eating meat anymore, and I'm definitely not eating deep fried fast food. So instead I've bought some vegetarian "chicken" nuggets made of soy or tofu or something, and I have those when the cravings are too strong and reasoning with them isn't working. The nuggets do have a similar texture to chicken and it tricks my subconscious into believing I'm having meat. I've also found a really good vegetarian chili that's very satisfying. It's a comfort food that's actually good for me since it's packed full of beans and veggies. I need to find more of those, healthy substitutes for the foods I love.

My husband is nothing like me when it comes to his relationship with food. Because he's trying to lower his cholesterol as much as possible over the next 3 months to avoid having to go on medication, he's decided not to eat anything with any cholesterol in it.
Which basically means he's eating lots of fruits & veggies and vegan type foods. If he thinks of eating something and then discovers it has cholesterol or saturated fats he just puts it back and goes on about his business.It doesn't really matter to him that he can't have certain things. I'd be pulling out my hair, bemoaning my fate and dying from food cravings.For him, food is just food. It doesn't have emotional connotations. He can take it or leave it. I want to be like that!!!

Jan. 12th, 2008


New Motivation

 I walked today, which wasn't in my plan but things change. I'd planned to walk M-F for an hour each day with weekend off. But last night my husband got his blood test results back from his physical and so today I drug him with me for a walk.

Guess who has extremely high cholesterol? Looking at the two of us side by side, you'd obviously pick me; the 5ft 5 300+ pound woman. You would not pick my lean, fit 6 ft tall 178lbs husband. But my cholesterol is just borderline at 206. My husband's is at 286. The doctor sounded rather concerned but decided that he'd give my husband 3 months to make lifestyle changes before putting him on medication. He's got to lower his cholestrol by 86 points or more. WOW. Talk about a new motivation for me.  I know that it's up to me to try and get us both on the right track.  What I won't do for my own health, I'd definitely do for my husbands.  So, exercise and healthy eating here we come!!!!

Which is why he went with me for my walk today. Unfortunately, my walking speed is quite a bit slower than his speed so he didn't get a work out, but it was an extra hour of movement for him which can't be a bad thing. We'll need to find an activity that he and I can do that will get his heart rate up as well. Maybe he can jog slowly next to me or something. We'd like to be able to exercise together, to keep eachother motivated. Actually, walking with him was excellent for me because I made a little more effort to keep my speed up. Of course it's also a tiny bit frustrating too. At one point I was puffing and sweating along, I look over and my slim fit hubby is having some kind of zen moment, strolling along smiling with his eyes closed listening to music not even glistening  or vaguelly looking like he's working out. When we got home I checked my pedometer and I'd actually walked faster with him than I have any other time during the week: 3.5 miles in one hour! Yay me. I'm going to try and get him to walk with me or bicycle with me in the evenings as well as weekends. Plus still do my own solo work out.
The doctors said we both need to make real lifestyle changes to improve our health (mine for weight, his for cholesterol) and for me it's finally sunk in. I want my husband here a very long time.  I've got to create a healthier lifestyle for the both of us.

Jan. 9th, 2008


(no subject)

Walked  an hour. My pedometer died half way through but I felt like I was walking my usual pace which would mean another 3 mile walk. I didn't achieve any lovely euphoric feelings after getting my exercise, actually I feel quite stiff. I think I may do a bit of yoga or stretching later to loosen up. Exercise is work but I'm going to stick to this. It's the least I can do for my health really. Even though it's hard my body actually wants this, it's my mind/spirit that hasn't gotten on the band wagon yet. Hopefully as I keep at it, I'll learn to like it more or just tolerate it as part of my regular routine. 

Jan. 8th, 2008


Getting ready for a happy fun good time

In about an hour I have an appointment for my 1st ever PAP test/gyno visit. Joy. 

I just came back from my walk. Again I did an hour of continuous walking and I completed 3.19 miles. I googled walking speeds and found 3 different articles that said an average walking speed for a  woman of average height and weight is about 3 miles an hour. For a good workout that should be increased to 4 miles an hour or more.  Considering I'm more than a hundred pounds overweight I guess I can be content with 3 miles an hour for awhile. Hopefully as I get stronger and lose weight the speed of my walking will increase. I've decided that one hour of walking is going to be my goal Mon-Fri. An hour of movement should help me get a little of this weight off and get me on track to being healthier. Besides, it's about all I can manage at the moment.

Actually, forcing myself out of bed this morning wasn't easy. My bed was sooooooo comfortable and I was feeling so sore (slipped on the stairs and bashed my arm into metal railing yesterday afternoon) plus I had a lovely headache. But finally after having a little whine and giving myself a list of reasons why it was perfectly okay to stay in bed, I got up and got moving anyway. I'm glad I did, though I don't have the same euphoric feeling I had yesterday after my walk (probably because my head /body are still aching).  Regardless, I'm pleased with myself.  I took a different route today which included some decent inclines to haul my giant butt up.  I may try different routes each day to keep my interest and vary the workout. Now I'm off to shower !

Have a great day everyone.

Jan. 7th, 2008



So, this morning I got off of my butt and went for a walk. I couldn't have chosen a better morning for it. Orange County finally got rain this weekend, after a year long dry spell. The air coming off the ocean is so clean and crisp you'd want to drink it. It was about 58-60 degrees. Perfect. And there was gorgeous light dancing off the ocean. Ideal walking conditions!

I was reading my copies of the books You: on a diet & You: staying young and the doctors suggested doing just a half an hour walk a day. I thought to myself that seemed like a reasonable amount of time & a fairly easy way to improve my health. I could manage that every day. Maybe. So over the weekend I declared to my hubby that I'd start walking this morning. Normally these declarations tend to fall to the wayside on the day I'm actually suppose to start them so I didn't want to give myself a chance to be lazy and back out. I dressed for walking when I got up this morning and dug out my pedometer. Got the music on my iphone ready to go and once I dropped my husband off at the train station I drove up to the Ocean Institute in Dana Point. I knew if I went home I'd talk myself out of walking, bed being oh so much more comfortable, and I also figured that walking beside the ocean would keep me motivated since it's so lovely & invigorating there. So I walked. Probably to an observer it was pretty slow walking, but for me it was what I could do. My body is just so weak from the past 3 years of inactivity. About 5 minutes into the walking my left calf and lower back began aching and didn't stop for the majority of the walk. I wanted to quit pretty much from the moment I started but I set a goal for myself that I wouldn't stop or take a break until I'd heard at least 4 songs play on my phone but when I hit that point I realized I didn't really feel a need to sit. I slowed down a bit while Schindler's List played (love the shuffle feature on my phone, I listened to Classical music, Michael Buble, Duran Duran, Blondie, Nora Jones and Cyndi Lauper all mixed together :) ), but then I continued on at the speed I'd been walking. I actually walked longer than I'd intended. Just as I was nearing where I'd parked the truck, right at the 40 minute mark, the song Sex Bomb came on and I just kept walking. I ended up doing 50 minutes and walking 2.79 miles. I think I could have easily done 3 miles in an hour (but I had to use the bathroom!). Maybe tomorrow I'll manage that. I'm not setting any real goals other than that the bare minimum is to walk for 30 minutes every day.For anyone who might know:  Is 3 miles in an hour an okay speed or am I horribly slow?  Not that I'm capable of walking any faster than that at the moment anyway. I'm just really really pleased that I made it that long walking continuously. I thought for sure I'd have to take a break but I didn't. Actually around the time I hit the 30 minute mark my aches went away and I actually started to feel pretty good and fairly energized. And now sitting here at home in front of the computer my lungs feel so refreshed and clear. I actually feel rather great. I've got to keep this feeling in mind each morning as a way to motivate myself to get out there and just do it, even when I don't feel like it.


Jan. 3rd, 2008


Borderline high cholesterol

My love of cheese & ice cream has finally led to heartbreak. I got my blood work results back from the doctor's office and all the things I was worrying about (diabetes, hemochromatosis, & hypothyroidism) aren't problems for me. The results were normal in all those areas but it turns out my cholesterol is slightly elevated. Just a few points above what it should be, but still it's something I need to take care of before it becomes a big problem. Heart disease is pretty common in my family, as are strokes. I guess this is just another impetus to make real, lasting dietary & lifestyle changes. Goodbye milk shakes, onion rings, cheesy pizza & whole days spent sitting in front of the tv/computer. Hello raw vegetables, fresh fruit and bicycle rides. The next few months are going to be so hard!!!!

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