Feeling Good About Me and Courtney Knew From The Very Start
This has been a much needed day of total rest and relaxation. I've cooked, visited with a friend, spent some time with Amber tonight, napped, worked out with a nice 5K in the park. Yeah, it's been nice.
I've done a bunch of thinking today, and I'm very happy where I am and where I'm headed. I'm very comfortable and confident, like never before. It's a relaxed feeling, free of "what if?" and "wish I would have done that." I know there's a lot of work to do to get where I dream of being, but now---it doesn't seem impossible or even the slightest bit difficult. It's just me. And maybe this transformation has finally allowed me to accept me, and understand me, and feel good about me. I like me, scratch that, love me--for maybe the first time in my life. Deep, I know...but these are things I think about when I make time to just relax and think about my life.
After a banana and a bowl of fresh strawberries for breakfast, I decided on trying something different for lunch. I found a bag of frozen veggies and some shrimp, and even though the veggies were of a variety I normally don't eat (zucchini and some similar plant), I gave it all a whirl in the pan with some butter. Yes, real butter. Without the butter it would have been 100 calories at the most, but since I sauteed everything in pure butter, even though I drained the butter before putting anything on my plate, I counted it as 300 calories. It was good, very good...and those veggies I normally don't eat, yeah---not bad at all. Good, actually. I need to try this dish again with just a dab of olive oil in a wok, instead of a frying pan. I need to buy a wok first.
We were having a traditional summer time cookout a year ago today. It was the day I discovered the 40 calorie hot dog. From June 26th, 2009:
Food and calorie budgeting were really good today. I found some all beef fat free hot dogs that check in at only 40 calories each! Now just to be clear, my philosophy has been clearly explained before in these writings, about how I feel when it comes to fat free products: I'd rather have a little of the full fat version than a bunch of the fat free version. Let's be honest, fat taste great! But when it comes to grilling dogs and burgers, the less fat the lower the calories, and that works better for our calorie budgets. The leanest hamburger still taste great off the grill, but hot dogs---well, I just didn't know. But I was willing to give them a fair shake. A regular hot dog with bun, depending on brands, can have anywhere from 230 to a whopping 320 calories! But a fat free dog on a bun with mustard checks in at a very nice 150. Big difference. I had a lean burger with onions and mustard and a hot dog with mustard and stayed within my calorie budget easily. It was a whole lot more bread than I normally eat, but hey, we were cooking out dogs and burgers, there's going to be buns! We have cut down tremendously on bread.
Of course, with our philosophy, nothing is off limits...however, we decide on our choices based on calorie values, if it's not a good value, we choose something else, or a lighter version, or a considerably smaller portion. With this way of thinking and deciding, we've naturally cut out most breads, sweets, and a variety of empty calories that we always consumed before without a care. We also consume much less cheese. I've split one cheese slice four ways before...yep, 15 calorie squares of American, and nobody complained. I even had enough calories remaining to enjoy a junior frozen yogurt soft serve from Braums Ice Cream and Dairy Store. It was a wonderful day!
That excerpt gives you an idea of the kind of calorie budget maneuvers that have made this journey of learning so natural to handle. By the way---I've since concluded that fat free hot dogs are great, but not on the grill---they must get the hot water treatment, and then they taste absolutely amazing!
After finishing the AOL interview last night, I sat and wondered if I communicated effectively---I always do this to myself. I know I did, so why do I stress? I have to accept that it's impossible to convey every thought, philosophy, emotion, and action that goes into a complete transformation. It'll be fine--and I'm not doing it over. It's done. One of the questions sent me racing back into the archives---even into the myspace version (I stopped posting this blog on myspace after Day 378) to find the best comments ever. I found one from Amber on Day 2 and one from Courtney on Day 3. Both were wonderful and mean the world to me. Part of Courtney's comment revealed to me that the differences between this weight loss attempt and every other were very noticeable from the very beginning. Courtney said: "... you seem to be in the total right mind set. And I'm VERY proud of you daddy, I know we've been saying we need to lose weight for quite sometime, but this time it's just different..." She recognized the difference on Day 3---she knew, there was something special about this time. This time, it was for real and for keeps.
Dinner tonight was amazing. The menu: Oven baked barbecue chicken breast, cheesy potatoes, and green beans. It was delightful, full of flavor, and a very nice way to spend 450 calories. See the picture below!
I completed a 5K walk/jog tonight, mostly walking fast. With the humidity, it felt like a really good workout. I was sweating heavily even before the first mile was complete. Once again I didn't take my iPod. Just the sounds of nature, people playing tennis (something I've talked about doing---and really plan on doing someday), and the crowd watching the fire dancers in the park. The what? Yeah, fire dancers! It looked like something you would see in Hawaii...two people twirling flaming torches in what appeared to be a very choreographed display. It was interesting indeed.
I wasn't able to find my old CPAP mask for tonight's experiment. I found an old machine, the tubing, the power supply---everything but the mask. Hmmmm...I was so sure I'd never need it again--I may have thrown the mask away. As of this writing--I can tell you: I ditched a big pillow, opting instead to go with a single pillow---and it made an amazing difference. I slept beautifully, waking without any sleep apnea symptoms. But I'm still going to the doctor. I have too much knowledge about the horrible consequences of untreated sleep apnea to not visit a doctor for a professional evaluation.
I'll be headed to Stillwater tomorrow to visit with the family. Aunt Kelli's birthday was today. I called and wished her a happy birthday and told her I would see her Sunday. Aunt Jean and Uncle Sig are in town for a week long visit, so I'll get to see them too! That will be fun. They've never seen me this small, well--since I was a kid at least.
Thank you for reading. Goodnight and...
Shrimp and veggies lunch dish. Too much butter! Next time, a touch of olive oil---it was very good!
This was dinner---oh so good! No cheese on the green beans---would have been too much. I already had cheese on the potatoes!