Focussing on Change, Not Results…

If you focus on results, you will never change.

If you focus on change, you will get results!

The above quote has always been a hard thing for me… we live in a results-driven society.  Why the hay bales should I do something if I’m not guaranteed rapid results?  And then there’s the whole matter of how much result is sufficient to spur one forward to get more results.  Because hell if I know I’ve been down the road where the slowness of weight loss has gotten so disappointingly turtle-like that my sacrifices to obtain said results haven’t seemed worth the hassle.  The road of least resistence has been my motto more often than I’d care to admit outloud.

I started a change-based challenge at the beginning of October.  As I mentioned in my previous post about the challenge, it was meant to tackle the bad habits we get into over the years, ALL of which I had mastered.  Like, if there was a bad habit award winner of the year, I’d win every dagblasted year!  I’m committed and I’m persistent!  The good habits we were to replace with our bad ones during the last 2 months of this challenge were the following:

  1.  Get at least 7 hours of sleep
  2.   No eating after 9:00 PM
  3.   Drink at least 64 oz. of water per day
  4.   No soda (not even diet soda)
  5.   Keep a daily food journal
  6.   Exercise
  7.   No sugar (minus a once-a-week treat)
  8.   Eat at least 5 vegetables and fruits per day

I mentioned in my last post, tackling all of those at once seemed like an impossibility in my world of gumdrops and candy canes dipped in Diet Dr. Pepper at midnight.  But I took it on anyway, not at all confident in my abilities to actually follow through to the end.  The 2 months  ended yesterday (yes, the final week for weighing and picture taking was Thanksgiving week… are we serious right now!?!?!?!?), and I’m proud of myself (y’all don’t even know how much it took out of me to type that outloud)!  It wasn’t easy and I wasn’t perfect, but I focussed on the change and I did get me some results.  Final count after 2 months: 33 pounds, several inches (kicking myself for not taking measurements), and a partridge in a pear tree.

If there’s one thing you should know about me, it’s that I do NOT do full length pictures… like PERIOD!!  If you take a full length picture of me and you post it on some social media platform without my permission, you best enroll in the witness protection program and STAT because I’ll find you!  Maybe it’s because I prefer to live in the headspace where I’m actually a svelt teeny bopper model from Greece here on vacation.  Anywho, I was forced to take beginning and end pictures for this challenge, and I guess I’m glad I did because though they be subtle and you may need a magnifying glass to find them, there is a difference.  I also learned that I lose from the top before the bottom… okay great… let’s spread the love people!   Long story, longer, the fact that I’m posting these full length pics is like a miracle in and of itself and you should feel privileged that the world has not imploded!   Yes, you should! You should also know that I will never in a billion bajillion years be posting nekked stomach pics to show how the fat blobules are decreasing… you are welcome!
 
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The top is after 2 months, and the bottom is back at the end of September.

Onward to the next month. I’m doing a similar challenge with my sister and her friend through Christmas Eve, and then I’ll be re-signing up for the next Six Sisters Healthy Habits challenge in January. Change is good… let’s do it!

If you want to follow along, I’m doing a motivation-inspired Instagram account, so click on over to follow me: https://www.instagram.com/cravingalife/

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Your smile for the day… BoBo tells the story of “HoHo coming at 6 O’clock”

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Doubt…

I’m well acquainted with doubt. It’s weaved through my life so seamlessly that it’s a part of the fiber of my being. It’s settled itself into my head space like a giant poisonous vine, wrapping it’s tenticles into the crevices and holding on for dear life. Doubt lived in my brain when I decided to finish my bachelor’s degree 6 years ago. It shouted things like, You won’t stay motivated… you’ll be gung ho for the first 2 semesters and then it will just fizzle out like every other thing you’ve ever done in your life… but it was the thought that counts.

Doubt lived in my brain when I was laid off from my job earlier this year, saying things like, You won’t find a job that pays anything better than minimum wage… who would want to hire an obese person with anxiety, OCD, and awkward issues?

Doubt lives in my brain whenever I try to stick to a healthy lifestyle plan, saying things like, You’re going strong now, but give it a week or two and you’ll be right back where you started… history repeats itself… and you’re the most predictable weight loss/gain patient on the planet.

Doubt is a huge detractor from self-confidence and self-esteem… if you doubt yourself enough, even subconsciously, you eventually believe it. It’s also the most dangerous thing you could feed your brain on a daily basis… like shoving fried foods and sugar and all manner of crap into your body and expecting it to perform the way you need it to.

I have a few things to say to my doubt… I did graduate with my bachelor’s degree at the age of 38 this past May… it took 6 years, but I did it. While we’re proving doubt wrong, I also did find a job that pays more than minimum wage… it may not be my life’s work, but there is proof that I am hireable.

Five weeks ago I started a “healthy habits” challenge. I knew my eating and weight were getting out of control, so one day by chance I came across this challenge and immediately signed up without giving it much research. After I’d paid my fee and they’d sent me the details, my heart dropped into my gallbladder. It looked near impossible for me. There was no way I could do all of that at once and be able to stick to it… it wasn’t doable for my personality. It was also restrictive… or in my mindset at the time it was restrictive… because it meant I couldn’t continue to eat 12 pounds of candy and 500 ounces of Diet Dr. Pepper every single day of my life. I wanted to follow a plan that was on the path of least resistence just right of EasyPeasyLemonSqueezy Avenue.

Each day I get a point if I do the following: Exercise at least 30 minutes, No soda (diet or regular), No sugar (except for one time a week), get 7 hours of sleep every night (doesn’t have to be consecutive), don’t eat after 9:00 p.m., keep a food journal every day, check in with my team at least once a day, eat 5 fruits and vegetables, drink at least 64 oz of water, and pre-plan my meals. Each week they also have a bonus point available, this past week it was to use weights during your workout and a previous one was no fast food. At the end of the week we add up our points, weigh ourselves (taking a picture of the number on the scale), and send it to our group leader who then tallies the points and ranks us within our teams. At the end of the 2-month challenge, the most points wins a gift card and the most weight lost wins a gift card. I have surprised myself to all ends of the Earth. Doubt still lives in my brain like that annoying relation who has overstayed their welcome (I don’t have any of those, relations, in case you were wondering), but everyday I have this dogged desire to keep going. I have lost weight, inches, and I feel better than I have for a long time!

To keep myself motivated, I’ve decided to keep a Weight Loss Instagram account. I wasn’t sure I wanted to open it to public, but I figure why not… I have nothing to hide… as this blog has proven time and time again, I am a frigging openly embarrassing book! Take it or leave it! Anyhow… it’s called cravingalife if you want to look me up and follow along. Get thee hence, Doubt… and I mean it this time!

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You are welcome for BoBo as a 2-headed llama riding a llama! You are welcome!

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Well Done, Faithful Servant…

This past week I attended a graveside memorial for a close family friend, LaVon Anthony. My folks met her in the 80s when I was but just a minion of a person. She lived in the trailer court a hop, skip, and a jump from my childhood home on the west side of Logan. As a young girl I remember her wit and straight talk. She never had kids and was married for only a few short months years before, so my sister and I kind of adopted her as a “fill-in” grandma. I have many fond memories of having dinners with her. We loved when she’d come over and we’d both shovel in the food in hopes that she’d stay around to play a game of “Hand and Foot” with us. She’d never let us win… that wasn’t LaVon… she was competitive no matter how many digits were in your age… but that’s why we loved her.

In the 90s after she’d returned from serving her 2nd church mission, she even lived with us for a while until she was able to secure an apartment behind the tabernacle in Logan… and then when they demolished those apartments years later to build a parking lot, she moved into Williamsburg Retirement Home where she lived out the rest of her days.

I could relate to her more as I aged. A single woman without kids trying to make it in a lonely world full of families. She’d often lament that no one would bother to attend her funeral so was adament she wouldn’t have one. She worried about money running out before she passed and was often wondering where that would leave her with no kids to take care of her.

My mom got the call 2 weeks ago Sunday that she was found in her apartment in Williamsburg slumped over the bathtub, dressed for the day, her bag packed waiting for a brother-in-law to pick her up to watch general conference. She’d had a stroke and was transferred from Logan Hospital to an Ogden Hospital and once stabilized transferred back to a skilled nursing facility in Logan to live out the remainder of her days. Mom and I went to visit her the evening she arrived at the facility, flowers in hand, not knowing what to expect. She was asleep when we arrived, so we gently woke her. Her eyes remained closed for our visit and I’m not sure if she knew who we were… her left side was paralyzed and the one word answers she was able to give seemed slurred and sometimes incoherent. It was not the LaVon I always joked around with, the LaVon who would come back with the wittiest reply even at 93 years old.

Mom turned to look at me and mouthed “she’s gone,” the person we knew and loved had moved on… her body was just here until it could pass into the next stage.

Through big fat tears rolling down my cheeks, I felt prompted to wish her safe travels and the happiest of reunions with her dear parents and siblings who had passed before her. I let her know I loved her and she was able to reply with a “love you.” We said our goodbyes… LaVon passed away the next night. I went to her graveside memorial on Wednesday, a 2-1/2-hour drive each way for a 30-minute service, I went because I told her I would be there, and I hope when it’s my time, childless and spouseless, someone does the same… because they care.

Safe travels, thou good and faithful servant. I hope they play a mean game of Hand and Foot in heaven too…



LaVon with Corbin and Madre at her 92nd birthday dinner…

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FYI Lindsay… BoBo said he wants to go live with this guy who has a goose coming out of his book!

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Kindness Is Free…

It was my 3rd lap around the track, my eyes focused where they always did, straight at the ground… because this time I had company. A group of college-aged “boys,” all fit and healthy and doing sprints, I guessed practicing for future track and field competitions, but I didn’t know. On any normal day, if I’d seen my track company I’d have turned right around and went back home, but this time I somehow mustered up all of the courage I didn’t really have and began my workout, staying on the far outside lane willing myself to become as invisible as possible. I had decided walking on the track was the better alternative as the night before I’d woggercized out on the road and had 2, count them, TWO, not the usual one, different cars full of rowdy 20-somethings roll down their windows, honk their horns for 20 minutes and catcall at me. The negative judgement on my outward appearance, having not the slightest idea of me, the person, made me want to crawl into a hole and bunker down for the millenium. I’m used to it… or I tell myself I should be used to it. I get stares and points and comments all of the time… words and looks that chip away at the little bit of self-confidence I have left.

But I tell this not for pity… I know I’m not alone… I know there are people who experience things like this on a scale far higher than I can ever fathom… I tell this because as I was rounding my 3rd lap staring at the ground and trying to avoid all eye contact with my group of “fit boys,” one of them went out of his way to show me he saw a person with thoughts and feelings and dreams and struggles, just like him. He crossed the track into my line of sight, put his hand up for me to give him a high five and simply said, “You rock!”

I was taken aback… I didn’t know how to react at first… this was new… it made me feel like a worthwhile human being… and we can’t have that. My smile was wide as I thanked him and continued on my way… but this time with a little extra pep in my step, tears welling in my eyes. Kindness made all the difference. Thank you “fit” track boy… you have no idea what a boost you gave to me when I really needed it… It cost him nothing and made this stranger’s faith in humanity a little bit stronger. You rock, fit boy! Be kind… it’s free!

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Two-fer Cooler…

Howdy Whitney’s Blog Space… that sounds so 2005, right!? But give me credit because at least it’s better than me chiseling about things on a cave wall with a dude named Grogzella.

In less ancient news, this past weekend was BoBo’s 2nd birthday… STOP!! Lindsay said she wasn’t going to go all out like she did his 1st bday shindig, and she said she didn’t, but I really think she did because my definition of not going all out is driving through the Mickey Ds drive through and going to a park. Now that, friends, is not going all out! Instead she rented a gigantic bounce house with water features for her front yard and had homemade food and decorations galore (that she says my mom made because she had hair-mergencies last week too… like it was bald-dire for a few minutes there!) The only thing I had complaints about is she had the nerve not to plant ginormous shade trees and have air conditioning outside so I wouldn’t have melted to death in the 95-degree sunshine! THE NERVE!!! Big Boy BoBo (his request, not mine) got spoiled rotten and I’m not sure he liked all of the activities, but the neighbor kids sure did!

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TWO! Baby’s cheeser smile is getting pretty scary these days! 😛

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E-man turned 17 this summer, so of course we got his birthday pictures! 😛

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Tractor majigger thinger… Backhoe? He knows all the names… Eh, I don’t.

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Shayne made this awesome Blippi cake… have I mentioned that Blippi scares me!? He does, okay!?

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“Boo” ice cream!

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The Curse of the WhitMonster…

Howdy y’all 2 readers (but mostly myself). I thought I better document the oddities that have followed me the last several weeks… like does this happen to normal people because for serious, I must have some speshal skills. I have been job hunting for months… it’s a full time job in itself and its ability to make one feel like the sludge on the bottom of the apple barrel is mind boggling. Not that I have much mind to be boggled, but you get the picture. It’s basically a constant reminder that you’re not good enough… which is ridiculous because it’s not true, but when you get rejection after rejection for months straight that little demon monster always seems to burrow itself up into the recesses of the doubt portion of your brain and lives there until you flush it out with a whole chocolate cake, only to return 20 minutes later.

Ain’t that a pretty picture? As a side note, last night I dreamt that my room was infested with armadillos which totally freaked me out because armadillos are freaky. I’m not going to lie and say I didn’t check the closet and under the bed tonight before I got into it. Dream analyzers? Armadillos? Back to the topic… so job hunting sucks the life out of a person. I’ve been pretty down in the dumps of late, but I also know that trials and tribulations are supposed to be growing experiences, so I do have to say that I did do things during this time I wouldn’t have been able to have done before, so there’s my positive side of the coin for what it’s worth.

About 5 or so weeks ago, I finally landed a job. It wasn’t my ideal dream job, but at the point I was at after months of rejections, except for a temporary part time gig, I was grateful for anything that wasn’t McDonald’s. So 5 or so weeks ago, I’m all celebrating and praising all that be holy and doing the hippity dippity grateful dance… fast forward a week or so later and I could not get a hold of my new employer. Not by phone, not by email… it was like they disappeared into a black hole somewhere! Before you get to thinking I signed up with a scam company, this company has been around for years… they have their programs and equipment in 86% of US hospitals and thousands of clinics and doctor’s offices, so it’s a large, legit company. In fact the company I worked at before for 13 years uses their programs. I kept trying to get a hold of them and was having no luck, so I googled them… and the news popped up all over that they were hit by a large international malware virus, some hackers hacked in and planted the virus which destroyed all of their files and data, etc. They had thousands of doctors and companies left without the programs they used daily and who knows how many more without work until they could rebuild. So, this company that’s been around for years and years is no match to the curse of the WhitMonster… call me up if you feel like you need a virus… I’m your gal.

I also underestimated how long it would take them to rebuild… I was all… give them 2 weeks and they’ll be up and working. It’s 5 or so weeks later as of today and they’re still not fully up and working, and I’m hanging around waiting for some unknown date of when I can get a paycheck again. About 2 weeks ago, I gave up waiting and started seriously looking for work again… not gonna lie, I was depressed and horribly down in the dumps about it all… to have lived in that high moment of relief for finally getting one to being back at square one was crushing to me.

This past Wednesday, the heavenly lights shown on me again and I finally landed another job. Maybe the virus was a blessing in disguise? For me… not for them. I started my new job on Thursday and it’s different than anything I’ve done before, so learning curve on the way. I analyze high dollar medical records for insurance companies and make sure that there aren’t any wacky charges going on. Let us all knock on all of the wood and hope the curse of the WhitMonster doesn’t rear it’s ugly head for this gig, okay? Great. In the meantime, I’ll try to blend in with the wallpaper.

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Hey guys… I watch a movie with snacks!

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Neighbor Thomas and BoBo with their popsicle tongues!

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Tea parties with wild animals for the win!

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Dragging Through Driggs…

Yello… How’s it going long lost blog space? I’ve been lazy with blogging the last several weeks, and by lazy I really mean I didn’t want to do it, and when I set my mind to something, you best believe it gets done… but only if it requires doing nothing, so scratch the ambitious part of that sentence. Boy, do I ever paint a picture of myself right here… it’s like I’m advertising myself to the sleep disorder center.

Anyhow, this past week I spent with the fam-damly up in their old stomping grounds, Teton Valley, Idaho. Driggs and Victor to be more specific. I guess the family does that every year on the 4th, but this is one of the times I actually went with them, so you can mark that down in the books somewhere. Baby BoBo turned into a bear up there and chased people around in his birthday suit, Ethan and Shayne did death defying stunts off of super high banisters into bean bags, Lindsay threatened lawsuits and divorce when they brought Bourne on one of the jumps, and Whitney mainly checked for germs and doled out Minion Tic Tacs to the masses… and by masses I really mean Baby BoBo the Bear. All in all, it was an eventful trip which included a hike, a rodeo, Grand Targhee wandering, a small-town parade, and lots of Pop-Its!

Dance party with Baby BoBo as the boss and no one allowed to wear shoes… boy, it must be nice to be the boss!

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Hiking… Baby BoBo made it 1 mile walking on his own… then he had to be carried… where do I sign up for that gig y’all!?!?

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Nekked bears chasing “Ma” and “Pa” before bath time.

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Victor Parade with the coolest dude in town…

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Driggs Rodeo… yee-haw!

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Grand Tetons for the win!

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