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Old 12-27-2004, 06:46 AM   #1  
Meg
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Default Maintainers - Last Week Of 2004!

Good morning and I hope everyone's surviving the holidays so far! I can't say that I was the poster child for diet and fitness over the past few days but I'm going to blame it all on my MIL's visit and leave it at that! I don't anticipate any more holiday challenges coming my way, so life is back on track now and it feels good. Going off track for a few days makes me realize how much I truly love my new way of life.

Can you believe this is the last week of 2004? Whoa, where did it go? This wasn't a great year for my family - we had some serious illnesses and surgeries - so I'll be happy to see the books closed on it. I plan to take some time to think about 2005 this week and started a Hopes and Dreams thread for us.

This week we'll be reorganizing and rearranging Maintainers, partly to get ready for our Thin For Life (revised) book discussion group. I'm anticipating that will start the week of January 10 or 17 - to give everyone a chance to start reading - but will announce it for certain this week.

Check in and let us know how you survived the holidays - IF you survived! Regardless of how bad it was, today is a new week and a fresh start.
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Old 12-27-2004, 09:20 AM   #2  
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Weekly I get a RealAge tip and this one is one that we have discussed numerous times....

Quote:
Monday, December 27

Sleep It Off
Skimping on sleep may add inches to your waistline.
Your blood levels of leptin, a hormone that acts as an appetite suppressant, appear to decrease when you experience sleep deprivation, according to new research. Keep leptin levels high and curb overeating and weight gain by getting at least 6 to 8 hours of sleep per night.

RealAge Benefit: Getting 6 to 8 hours of sleep per night can make your RealAge as much as 3 years younger.
No time at the moment to post much else I be back later... TTFN...
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Old 12-27-2004, 11:04 AM   #3  
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Good Morning everyone. Well Ilene .... I didn't need to read that bit about sleeping, I averaged four hours over the last few days. But things are looking up

I haven't done a stitch of exercise in three days so it's legs today. I got an MP3 player but no batteries. We'll remedy that today and I'll get back on the elliptical which is finally set back up.

We had a wonderful day yesterday with my husbands family. I ate way too much without a bit of guilt because I now know that muscle is key and that I can build some more. Awesome power that. And I'm not weighing myself until tomorow. I will not be intimidated by the salt and fluids monster.

Here's hoping everyone is well!
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Old 12-27-2004, 12:26 PM   #4  
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Good Morning,

I'm going to try to post more. I am a very sporadic poster, but regular lurker, yet I always feel welcome here...thank you for that. I've been working as a H.S. teacher since Sept. and free-time is so scarce nowadays.

Meg, your opening post really spoke to me today. This is a new week and a fresh start! My problem is staying balanced, not starving or stuffing, just satisfying my hunger enough to keep going. Over the weekend, I was definitely in stuffing-mode. I ate WAY too much and, unfortunately, I'm the type of person who can gain 6 lbs in 3 days. I realize it's mostly water weight, but still. My jeans are tight this morning and nothing is more discouraging than squeezing into my "big" jeans. I did the same thing over T-giving and vowed I would not let it happen again. I worked so hard to get back on track and here I am starting over. For some reason, a 3-day slip (and it was a big one) is so hard to bounce back from. For others in this same situation, I empathize and seek your words of wisdom.

Alas, I am determined to stay on track today eating-wise. Exercise is never the problem. I threw away all of the goodies and cooked up several batches of squash, chili & various veggies. I'm ready to get through the next several days eating well. STILL, I panic when I fall of the maintenance (sugar) wagon. I fear I will not have the sense to get back on track and...ugh...it's just scary.

Enough self-pity. Today is a new day. I know we can all recover from any diet or exercise mishaps that may have occurred over the holiday season. I'm so grateful I can come here and find support.

SusanB & Ilene - get your zzz's! Thanks for that advice, sleep is so important to our overall health. I know I need my 8 hours.

Less (a.k.a. Anne)
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Old 12-27-2004, 12:29 PM   #5  
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I'm off to the gym! Yeah!
I got a pilates DVD for Christmas along with a yoga mat, band and ball and I tried it out last night, desperate for some exercise (I haven't been to the gym since last Wednesday)
Well, I have to say that the lady on the DVD and I are going to have a love-hate relationship! And I thought I was in pretty good shape
I was following along with her and not doing too bad I thought and then as if she was looking into my livingroom, she'd remind me to keep my abdominals tight so I'd say "oh, yeah" and tighten them and then she'd have another look and tell me that I was forgetting to breathe. I'd say "oh, yeah" and then she'd remind me to get on with the repetitions - "oh, yeah". It was quite comical. Obviously, I make the same mistakes that most people make, but I was just sure that she could see me
The cat thought that I'd lost what was left of my mind and was down nudging at me and meowing the whole time. As I grabbed the ball and started on those exercises, he ran for his bed and sat there, clearly worried that something bad was going to happen for sure!
This morning, my abdominal muscles are pretty tender and I can hardly wait for my regular workout where I normally feel in control and an even match for the machines!
Then its off to the grocery store to get some salad fixings and some fruit. The past few days have been a real departure from my regular eating and I'm tired of feeling full and bloated. I'm fantasizing about a huge plate of salad (topped with MORE leftover turkey, of course). My new years resolution is to be finished the turkey
I've got a couple of days to myself and then my daughters and their fiance's are coming back. My mother lives in a bed-sitting room in a retirement home and we've given her a room makeover for Christmas and Wednesday is the big day. There's a new floor lamp, a CD rack / shelf and a pretty sunflower wallpaper border to be put up and a whole lot of organizing and rearranging to do (she's a real clutterer!). Should be a fun day. Friends of hers are taking her out for the day and I'll be giving her my cell phone so I can call her for descisions on stuff, just like in the TV show we got the idea from. Should be a lot of work but a lot of fun too. She's all excited but nervous about it!
Well, no more procrastinating. I'm off to the gym, for real this time!
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Old 12-27-2004, 12:42 PM   #6  
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I did okay over the Christmas weekend. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day I let myself eat whatever I wanted to and surprised myself by not wanting to eat that much. We had the traditional Christmas Tamales, Spanish Rice and Refried Beans with Red Velvet Cake for dessert on Christmas Eve. But I limited myself to two small tamales and about a 1/2 cup of rice and then I was full. I even skipped on the Red Velvet Cake and sent all the leftover cake home with my daughter.

On Christmas Day, we ate at a neighbor's house. I took one spoonful of each side dish (mac & cheese, mashed potatoes, stuffing w/gravy, brussel sprouts), had one piece of ham and a very small helping of Trifle. I was overstuffed but it was really good. The day after Christmas, I was up 1/2 a pound and then this morning found that I had actually lost that 1/2 pound plus 1 more so that I am now 1 pound under my original goal weight. I can see that it's going to be a challenge getting this maintenance thing balanced so that you don't gain or lose weight but stay the same. I'm sure I'll get the hang of it though.

The best part of Christmas was fitting into the size 2 jeans my husband bought me. That was a real shocker because I don't think I've ever worn a size 2 in my entire adult life. What a great NSV and a great Christmas present to myself.

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and best wishes for a Happy and Prosperous New Year.
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Old 12-27-2004, 03:23 PM   #7  
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Hi Meg, Ilene, Susan, Anne, Barb, Elaine, and everyone else yet to post today.

Anne, you could have written my post for today. My eating habits have been just awful the last week, for no reason I can figure, and I feel like I'm getting back on the wagon today. Just horrible, horrible sugary food cravings. Today has been good so far. I got some shopping done for myself, got some good deals, and some walking around time.

It's also been a tough weekend for me psychologically in that I had my last long pre-marathon training run on Friday and it went exceptionally badly. I saved my heart rate data from the run, plotted it up and hung it on the refrigerator to remind myself what happens when I eat poorly. In a strange turn of events, in spite of this sugar fit I've been on lately, my problem Friday was that I didn't get in enough calories during the run, and I basically bonked. The HR plot is still a valid motivator though, follow my eating plan whatever it is, so that I don't have to run this thing either too heavy or underfueled. Trying to remember a few weeks ago when I ran my last race on the lighter end of my weight range and it went so well.

Also had a major 'ah ha' moment last night. I was at Amazon checking out one of the books from the book list thread, 'The Thin Books' by Jean Eddy Westin that funniegirl recommended, and the excerpt had a sentence about (I paraphrase) how only today matters, not what you ate yesterday and feel guilty about, and not what you might eat tomorrow and fear. And it just hit me. I am absolutely terrified of eating! Of food! How bizarre it is that I have never realized this?? How bizarre is it that I'm terrified of choclate cake?? Well, I ordered the book immediately but have been thinking a great deal about this newfound revelation. I sort of feel like a giant weight has lifted. Now that I have identified this issue, and can think about it rationally, it just seems ridiculous. It seems it can't stand the light of day.

So now to digest this idea fully, see if the newfound lightening holds, and see what, if any, difference it makes in my approach to maintaining.

Elaine, I'm so happy for you sticking to your plan and fitting into your size 2s!

Barb, what a great cat story! I got a real kick out of reading it.

Ilene, send of those sleep vibes my way. I'm waking up at 4 a.m. again! I guess it might also help though if I stayed up past 8:30!

(wunder)Anne
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Old 12-27-2004, 06:11 PM   #8  
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Happy "Back Tuit" Monday, everybody
I survived the weekend quite well, other than a brief run-in with a little too much meat. I had a few nibbles and bites, but all went according to plan. The "A" plan Of course, I haven't yet gotten on the scale to see what a day of nibbling abd biting has done and I probably won't for a few more days, but I don't feel bloated or sugared-up. It sure is easier to stay on the wagon than to clambor back on!

Anne, your statement about fear hit me right between the eyes. But for me, I don't see it as necessarily bad. There are some foods that I out and out fear: I know they are trigger foods for me and that once I start, I won't stop until I see the bottom of the bag, box, whatever. I also know that I can live a perfectly fulfilling life if I never again eat a thin mint, because I can't eat one. I don't see much point in aversion therapy or practicing. It's not a food which you can buy ONE or order ONE in a restaraunt. Having a box open in the house would be like putting an open bottle of scotch in front of an alcoholic and saying "just take 1 small drink." But that's me. I've chosen avoidance as the way to deal with those particular foods, and yes, they scare me to death because I know what they still could do to me. I think a rational dose of fear is a good thing.

I've started to re-read Thin for Life. Everybody have their copy?

Mel
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Old 12-27-2004, 10:33 PM   #9  
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Anne, I know a lot about fear of food; it dominated my life for years and years. Food seemed to be all-powerful. It was – and is – a source of much pleasure, but at the same time it was also a source of much pain. For the longest time, I viewed food as the enemy; the force that made me both a center of attention -- “You’re such a good cook,” “I love to come to your dinner parties,” -- and the (self-perceived) center of ridicule and humiliation -- “You could lose the weight if you really wanted to,” “Why is it that you can do everything else so well, and fail so miserably at maintaining your weight?”

I attributed every kind of value to food (healthy food was wholesome, righteous, and good; bad food was evil, awful and beyond the pale) and to myself for eating it. Incidentally, I really thought of myself as wholesome, righteous and good. Usually, I was wanton; selfish; undisciplined; bad. There were times when I thought I was lower than low. You would have thought I was describing an axe murderer.

Worse, I couldn’t control the food or my reactions to it. I would decide that I wasn’t going to eat X, and then I would polish off a plateful. I would declare that TODAY I WAS GOING TO DIET, and by lunchtime, I was shoveling in anything that wasn’t tied down. Food called the tune and I danced the dance. I always felt powerless. Self-loathing was my constant companion.

Afraid of food? You bet.

I wish I could tell you when my thoughts began to change. The shift was so slow in coming and so subtle that it’s hard to pinpoint, but I think I must give credit to Weight Watchers, which in the early 90s was preaching a message that ALL food is OK and that you could eat anything you wanted as long as you counted it. For the first time, instead of declaring any number of items “off limits,” I was hearing that it was perfectly fine to eat any blessed thing I wanted as long as I totaled the points.

What WW gave me was a structure. I had to furnish the rooms with my own beliefs and my own values. Slowly, I began to realize that food is simply food. A chocolate cake (to use your example) is simply that: a chocolate cake. And someone who eats chocolate cake is simply that: someone who eats chocolate cake (even when *I* was the someone). Chocolate cake is not a marker on the value scale. It’s just cake.

You have taken a major step in recognizing your feelings. Some wag once pointed out that you can't unring a bell. Likewise, once you've held a fear up to the light, you'll be hard-pressed to hide it under a bushell (how's *that* for mixing metaphors; this is why I *never* write at night!). You're well on the way to defeating the demon. But you’re not alone. I would say to everyone who is chastising themselves for overeating through the holidays: love yourselves, don’t loathe yourselves. Save your loathing for things that deserve it, like child molesters, drug dealers and spam. You celebrated the holidays with good friends, good food and good talk, just as people have done for the millenia. This is not a bad thing; this is a wondrous thing, a glorious aspect of the human condition. Why can't we relish the coming together; the sharing; the creation of community?

And now, as the holidays draw to a close, I say let’s return to our regular routines, refreshed and renewed, and with a newfound energy and appreciation for all that we’ve learned about ourselves. It will help vanquish the fear. It will enable us to put things in perspective. And we will be able to love ourselves.

Oh, and one more thing: Breathe.

I love you chickies.

Last edited by Airegrrrl; 12-27-2004 at 11:28 PM.
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Old 12-28-2004, 02:09 AM   #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airegrrrl
Afraid of food? You bet.

I wish I could tell you when my thoughts began to change. The shift was so slow in coming and so subtle that it’s hard to pinpoint, but I think I must give credit to Weight Watchers, which in the early 90s was preaching a message that ALL food is OK and that you could eat anything you wanted as long as you counted it. For the first time, instead of declaring any number of items “off limits,” I was hearing that it was perfectly fine to eat any blessed thing I wanted as long as I totaled the points.
I didnt know it at the time, but I was also very afraid of food for years and years. I was afraid because I thought it had more power than I did over my eating. IF it was there, I just HAD to eat it. All of it, and it really didnt matter what it was, even lousy food. So it was indeed in control.

The process of losing fear of food for me was through traditional non dieting (such as the books by geneen roth, etc) via legalizing all foods and learning and responding to my physical hunger signals. I brought anything appealing into my home and allowed myself to eat anything that I wanted as long as I was physically hungry and stopped when satisfied (this also took time to learn). Not only was this freeing and fun, I even began to slowly lose weight doing this as food slowly became de-mystified and lost its power over me. And most of the things I thought I could never get enough of soon became boring and too sweet and fatty, and many lost their appeal to the point of repulsion. In addition, keeping an open mind, I learned a whole lot- more than I ever dreamed there was to know about me and food and why I was driven to eat it when I wasnt really hungry (head hunger), but that's another thread.

The most important lesson however is that food is just food, no matter what it is. That some foods I now want to eat because of how good they make me feel. And that some others are still problems and always will be, and that I choose to keep out of the house. Cheetos come to mind (and really good icecream). If they are here, I will eat them all. But I no longer fear them. They are just foods I particularily like. And I now know if I really really want, I could go buy out the store and eat them all. But its MY choice to not do this, so in reality I do indeed now have the power over them -- I just had to learn this for myself. Food is now just food in the same way the sky is blue. There are no bad or good foods, just foods with different taste and texture, caloric value, and vitamins and minerals. Some I choose to eat, others I no longer wish to. Whatever works.

Life is great. Glad the long Holiday season is almost over however. It was a good season indeed, better than most. A good decade even. I hope the next is as pleasant. I am so looking forward to starting the new year with a clean slate. I love a blank piece of paper - there are so many possibilities that just have to be inked in!

Jan
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Old 12-28-2004, 02:22 AM   #11  
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I agree that validating all foods is liberating and it helps you lose that fear of certain foods. That was a very important thing for me- to learn that there is no such thing as a "bad food". It's just the portions and the timing and frequency that you eat them.

And I also sympathize with wndranne with the sugar cravings. I am going nuts with it- I just can't stop cramming desserts in my mouth- although I have no desire for fat. I went out and got a pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks today- it was lowfat- but my teeth hurt from the sugar and I loved it!!!

It was worse right before the time of the month, but even now- I'm like an addict! You know, I wonder if it's a winter thing? I definately start craving things when it gets colder- and it's hit a cold spot even where I am in the south.
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Old 12-28-2004, 08:26 AM   #12  
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Thanks Indy Robin and jansan for the incredible posts.

The one experience that you both talk about the I just can't relate to is the legalizing food. I did this at one point in my life, sick of diets, sick of worrying about every morsel. I tried the advice that says, thinking I'll probably go crazy for a while, then I'll get tired of sugary/fatty foods, and then I'll get sick of that and just eat when I'm hungry and lose weight. Well, it didn't work that way. I never got tired of it. Never. And I gained about 75 lbs. I didn't diet my way up, I legalized it. To this day when I see people post about how they lost their taste for that kind of food after either giving it up for a while or legalizing it, I just have to wonder. I guess I'm wired differently.

Now having said that, I do in fact eat a lot of traditionally 'bad' stuff. But I use my little book to figure out if I can. Do I have enough calories left for the day to afford a cookie? If there is a cookie around, I'm by definition hungry, and I absolutely cannot trust internal signals to tell me if its OK--it must be an intellectual decision. And, like Mel, there are a few foods I just don't eat in a non-portion controlled setting, and don't bring into my house, because for whatever reason, I will not stop--peanut butter cups, Cheetos, and Chunky Monkey ice cream are the 3 biggest examples. [Also shrimp and strawberries, but they just don't have the negative impact that the others do, so no worries about eating away.] Strangely, these forbidden foods don't scare me--decision is already made.

Quote:
Slowly, I began to realize that food is simply food. A chocolate cake (to use your example) is simply that: a chocolate cake. And someone who eats chocolate cake is simply that: someone who eats chocolate cake (even when *I* was the someone). Chocolate cake is not a marker on the value scale. It’s just cake.
This is such good advice. It's also something I know enough intellectually, that I think I said something similar in one of the holiday threads, here's the quote:

Quote:
No matter what, I try to keep in mind that it is just a cookie. Even if I ate 7 of them, and I've had those days, it isn't like I've committed a felony. I try to remind myself that there are consequences to every decision that I have to live with, and I have the power to make the decision I want, even bad ones. Build momentum off of the good decisions, learn from the bad ones, and realize that you will always have plenty of each. That is the way it is supposed to be. Over time, if I work it, there will be more good decisions than bad, and it'll turn around.
Note the words 'try' here. This is what I tell myself, and without realizing it, I've been afraid that a cookie (in above example) has some magical power over me to derail everything. I've had to talk myself through this over and over because I just didn't believe it.

So I've been afraid a cookie will somehow steal my power. That is silly enough that it is a relatively easy one to deal with, now that it has been exposed for what it is. I thought I was just afraid of regaining, a fear I would consider somewhat healthy, and so not an easy one to deal with. Now that I've seen the distinction, I can focus on what to work on.

wedded, the sugar cravings come and go for me as well, and they are much stronger when I'm exercising more. There's also definitely a montly component to it, and also a good healthy dose of 'no apparent reason'. Never thought about time of year. I guess that makes sense--seratonin drops for many people with less sunlight and sugar helps stimulate it, so I'd believe a connection is possible.
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Old 12-28-2004, 09:16 AM   #13  
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Ladies -
Wow, amazing. All of your posts are just so enlightening. We all must be afraid of food to some degree. Not really fear of "food," but fear of losing control and not being able to recover. Fear of a major relapse. As soon as I start eating sugary foods, I lose control. For some reason, one is never enough - I know there is much controversy around the issue of sugar addiction, but I believe in it because I know how I react to foods with that deathly sugar/fat combination. I tell myself "just have one," "its just a cookie," etc. etc. But still. I tend to lose control. I don't know why and this doesn't change for me.

wndranne, I read the Geneen Roth books several years ago and attempted to follow her chocolate-chip-cookie-dough-for-dinner advice. I "legalized" food and ate my way through about 2 months, but never craved a salad like Geneen. That way of coping did not work for me AT ALL. However, I have come to terms with "legalizing" food in my own way. Strict diets do not work because they perpetuate the vicious cycle of good/bad, on/off -- which all equate to starve/binge in my book. Consequently, I TELL myself I can eat anything I want, but I always do a mini cost/benefit analysis of the situation. Even over the holiday, I gave myself permission to eat all of the stuff I shoveled in, so now I'm trying to stay positive and learn from the aftershock I'm experiencing this week.

What have I learned? Once again, I realize that it is just not worth it!! The cookies didn't even taste very good. I awoke each morning dehydrated and defeated. I'm learning not to berate myself for the slip, but return to my usual routine, like Robin said -- I've read Thin for Life twice now and cannot wait for the book group discussion. I'm experiencing the power of positive self-talk first hand and what a difference it makes. Yes, I'm scared that each time I binge I will never stop. But it is so true that each time you work through the feelings and the fear and get over it, the next time is that much easier. Afterall, it's just food.

Like I've read from Mrs. Jim so many times before, it's all in your head. It is just a nasty head game.

Lessismore (Anne)
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Old 12-28-2004, 11:06 AM   #14  
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It's weird... for about 4 or so months this year I had complete control... I could have junk in my house and not care and not eat it and just eat all the wholesome foods... Sometimes it's easy sometime's it's not... I just got to accept it and learn to accomadate the times it's not..

Lessismore: I hear ya on the dehydration... the drinking lots of water has been helping though... You reminded me of the fact that I used to do the cost/benefit analysis of each situation when it came to food... That's another method I should employ.

Anyway I got a heart rate monitor for Christmas and love it... I discovered my heart rate is where it should be on my long runs and I feel it today... I feel fabulous after doing 9K yesterday. The rest of the week looks good. I do have New Year's Day at my BF's grandmothers house which always includes too much food, but I'll keep myself in check, be tough if I have to.

Cheers!

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Old 12-28-2004, 03:51 PM   #15  
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I weighed in this morning and was relieved to see that all the bloat and the water from the Christmas food has vanished and I back where I was when all this started. Being relatively new to maintaining, I was nervous about this holiday season. It wasn't realistic to avoid all the traditional foods but I was somehow afraid that one bite of something I don't normally eat would put 45 pounds back on me all at once! Its nice to know that a couple of days of crazy eating habits doesn't undo all the good that I've done. And what's more, I'm quite content to get back to my regular routine of eating and exercising.

For you cat lovers, I have to tell you about my episode of hysteria last night. I normally keep my bedroom closed off because I've always had allergy problems with cats and although they don't seem to bother me with Baxter, I figure why risk it? Since the door is always closed, I never really thought about the fact that the cold air return in my room had no cover. I have a night table over top of it and had actually forgotten about it. Last night, I was curled up with a good book and started hearing some weird metal noises from upstairs. I think I figured it out as I ran upstairs and sure enough, the bedroom door was wide open. I pulled away the night stand and there were kitty prints in the dust! I went into total panic mode calling the cat, shaking his treat box and running around the house, ripping off all the cold air return covers to see if they were connected. There was total silence (Baxter is usually extremely vocal) and I visions of my poor kitty having fallen off the end down 2 storeys and laying somewhere in the duct work. I ran for the yellow pages and started calling HVAC people, figuring they would best know which walls to break down. I finally reached some poor guy and was babbling an explanation of my emergency when I heard a little meow behind me! I don't think Bax was impressed by how hard I squeezed him but I'm sure that the HVAC guy now has a great story to tell at parties over the holidays! Now that I think about it, perhaps the last of the holiday pounds were burned by my hysterical running up and down the stairs . All is well now and the cold air return now sports a new cover, purchased first thing this morning. In hind sight, I should have realized that cats are smart enough not to walk off into thin air and that he would probably come out when he was good and ready but I was sure in a state by the time he wandered out!

Well, I should get the rest of my supper on. It will be a real treat to have something other than turkey tonight.
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