Friday, January 03, 2014

I Went on a Journey...

and I didn't leave home.  Sounds crazy huh...let me start at the beginning...in one of the early months of 2013 I got a call from a friend, she was crying, to tell me that her dear, dear friend had died of a massive heart attack the night before.  I was stunned...she was so young...my friend and I talked for a while and then we hung up.  Now, I didn't know her friend but this hit me like I can't even begin to explain.  All kinds of things went through my head...she didn't get to say good-bye, were there things left unsaid, were there things she wanted to do, how was her husband managing after this shock, and on and on and on. 

Then I started thinking about my life...now don't get me wrong, I am crazy healthy, have no heart problems, virtually perfect blood pressure...but when something like this hits so close to home, it really made this girl stop and think...I thought about the 20 pounds I had put on since I closed the shop 6 1/2 years ago...when I closed the shop I was a lot thinner but I was in terrible shape.  I didn't exercise and my weight was down because I just didn't eat...so that wasn't at all healthy.  I didn't want to go back there, but I knew if I could drop a few pounds I would feel much better. 

For whatever reason it took me a while to get myself in gear...I was going to Pilates twice a week and loving that...I was getting stronger and a lot more balanced, which is a wonderful thing since as we get older the balance seems to go...the last thing I want is to fall and break something.  But I wasn't dropping any weight.  Andy was out of town the end of July and I decided this was it...I was here alone and didn't have any distractions and didn't need to fix any big meals...I thought I would try just modifying what I eat, limit the bread and white carbs and decrease my portions...no more sandwiches and Cheetos for lunch...I substituted a salad with lots of greens, cut up chicken a few dried cranberries and a low calorie, fat free dressing (thank you Judy Cash)...I have a regular breakfast and dinner, just less of it...a protein bar mid morning for a snack and a small handful of raw almonds for a snack in the afternoon.  That's it...simple, easy to live with and I'm never, ever hungry...oh wait I forgot my treat...every night at 8:00 I have 2 Oreo's...my Pilates instructor has tried to get me to move those to a different time of the day, but I've stood firm on this one...it's my treat, I look forward to it all day and I don't cheat during the day because I know it's coming at 8...oh the games we play...but it's worked...since the end of July I have lost 18 pounds and kept it off over the holidays.  I feel fantastic...I have more energy...I'm still doing Pilates but have bumped up the pace and the weight considerably since I feel so much better.  I never feel deprived...it's a whole life transformation...and it was easy!

So long story short, I had talked myself into the idea that since I was 60+ this was just the way it was going to be...the weight had settled in and it wasn't coming off...I couldn't have been more wrong...and I couldn't be happier!  I don't know if this will help me stay around here for 30 or so more years to see my grandkids have kids of their own and to finish the zillion projects I have lined up and to read all the books on my list...but I know beyond a shadow of a doubt I feel a million times better.

If you've read to the end of this epistle thank you...sorry for no pictures...I'll do better next time!

Life is Better than EVER!!!

31 comments:

Mad about Craft said...

You've done well. It is so easy to get into a rut and accept how you are at the time!

Happy Cottage Quilter said...

Wow Carol, you have persevered and have been keeping your goal! I really need to do this. I've put on weight since my surgery last year. Even the walking I was doing before surgery has gone on the back burner. Thanks for the great report and pep talk :-)

Cheryl said...

Great job Carol and thanks so much for sharing!!! I also took 2013 to take care of myself. Dumped some much needed poundage and got myself back to the gym......results, I feel like myself again!

em's scrapbag said...

You are an inspiration. I exercise 6 times a week but I know I need to work on how I eat. Thanks for your success story. Hope I can do better now.

Michelle said...

Congrats on that..I know how hard it is to lose weight..that is wonderful. Going to try a few of these ideas and see if it helps me.

julieQ said...

OH good girlie!! I am proud of you for your perseverance and fortitude and just happy, happy for you!! I too love that white bread and sugary stuff, so I am watching that, and walking/jogging is what I am about these days...here is to our journey!!

Nedra said...

Good for you! I need to get back on track myself :)

sunny said...

Thanks for sharing your inspirational story. I've been having some health issues, and I'm really focusing on getting everything under control. I former (younger than me) coworker recently died of a massive heart attack, and I understand how that can hit home. Good luck with your future endeavors.

Mary said...

What an awesome story of your makeover. You should be very proud of yourself! Great way to start 2014. Congratulations.

mary

Janet O. said...

This was a great read, Carol. I'm sure many of us needed this push. I have been lax on my exercise, but did well on my eating until the holiday. I want to get my well-being back in line and you have helped motivate me.
Congrats on your success!

Ranch Wife said...

It IS harder to lose weight as we get older and its not always about the weight. Its about feeling better and being healthier.. I commend you for the lifestyle changes you have made and for your success! Well done! You did it the right way! We're making many of those same changes around here.

Michele said...

Wonderful! Exercise can help with so many things! In the past six months I've been riding my bike more and I feel so much better! It's a challenge to get started. Cheetos are just too good......it's best that I stay away from them. Congratulations :-) Happy New Year!

Diane said...

Woohoo! This is what I'm trying to do. You've inspired me to do better. Congratulations.

Bonnie said...

Great job keep up the good work. We women have problems putting ourselves first, taking care of ourselves. you are a wonderful example. We women of a particular have to take care of ourselves.

Libby said...

Oh my gosh, my story is so similar - though started differently. 14 months ago, Hubby had heart surgery to correct a heart problem that he had had since birth. Lifestyle did not take us to the cardiac hospital, but it became abundantly clear that we didn't want to return in the future due to lifestyle. So we completely changed our habits starting with our diet which now consists of clean foods, low fat, low sodium. (we have 6 gingersnap cookies in the evening for our treat *s*) We started exercise by walking building up time and distance. I now walk 3-5 miles per day, 6 days a week. Also I go to yoga 3 times per week and try to swim at least once per week. We marvel at how GREAT we feel. Soon to be 54, I feel better than I can ever remember. Loving life and living it to the fullest!

Jeanna said...

Good for you Carol! That is an amazing transformation and I am so happy it was easy for you. I know I should and can do better. You've inspired me :)

Cathy said...

Inspiring story, thanks for sharing. I'm trying to make some healthy changes myself. Reading of your success gives me hope that I can pull it off.

Cathy said...

Inspiring story, thanks for sharing. I'm trying to make some healthy changes myself. Reading of your success gives me hope that I can pull it off.

annieb said...

Congrats Carol! Good for you and good luck in 2014!

Lori said...

Good for you!! It's never too late to reach for your goals and when we feel physically better everything else seems to fall into place. I'm very proud of you!!!
I love Pilates!!

Melanie said...

A friend and I talked about this earlier in the week. It may not increase the quantity of your life(though I totally believe it will). I do whole heartily believe it will increase the quality of your life. Mobility, breath, flexibility...are gifts at any age. I'm at a plateau. Maybe your post will jump start me.

jaybee said...

Well done - you have inspired me to rethink my habits. I hope I can do as well.

jaybee said...

Well done - you have inspired me to rethink my habits. I hope I can do as well.

jaybee said...

Well done - you have inspired me to rethink my habits. I hope I can do as well.

Patty said...

Thank you for your honesty. Being 60+ isn't fun and I was told the same story, you will not lose that extra weight. You are truly an encouragement.

Kathy said...

Congratulations on your success! I did something similar this year, and feel much better as a result. My challenge was a program through work, which focused on diet and exercise (LOTS of exercise). I'm 55 and not used to exercising other than walking, so this was a big change for me. I lost weight and am in better shape than I've been in for the last 20 years. I want to do another 10 pounds this year, so I'm still working on it. We eat a lot of salads, too. One thing I've discovered is making salad dressing of blueberry balsamic vinegar and walnut oil. It's not low-fat, but it's a "good" fat and you don't use that much - the vinegar is pretty potent! We really enjoy it, and I've quit buying most processed food like salad dressing. We mostly eat fruits, vegetables, a little meat, and grains. I spend a lot of my grocery money in the produce aisle! It was easier eating produce in the summer as I could go to the farmer's market.

Keep up the good work - and I hope to keep it up, also!

Kim said...

So this is what happens when a girl makes up her mind and sticks with it?, oh lord I so need to apply myself to this theory. Thanks for a very positive post. I think your positive attitude accounts for your good health. ��

suz said...

excellent - last March I did something similar - I feel so much better and my family is happy to see me doing to well

Joan said...

Oh Congratulation Carol. You are an inspiration for this 60+
Hugs

Gretchen said...

Congratulations! Thanks for sharing your story on how to change and get moving.

Anne Heidi said...

Congratulations! Well done :-)