Becoming Lighter

There are 18 steps to the Transformation program. I have just finished #8, The Big Forgive…

I can’t believe how much ‘lighter’ I feel in body and spirit since doing it; the step I dreaded for the past few weeks has been instrumental to my beginning to soar!

I have also learned to think more positively. For example instead of saying I lost 10 lbs, I now say I became 10 lbs lighter – think about it for a minute.

I have lost weight in the past 8 weeks – NO! I have become lighter, in every sense of the word.

It’s funny, every other time I have tried to ‘lose weight’, by the fifth or sixth week I would plateau and then quit. What’s different this time? I am pretty sure that the community connection on the Transformation site  and giving my all to the steps have made an incredible difference. My husband remarked last evening that I look younger – that’s quite a compliment for this 57 year old!

Another thing that is different this time is that through the steps I am slowly changing my thought patterns. For example, yesterday I was driving somewhere and I got lost. I drove more than an hour out of my way to get to where I was going. As I was driving I started to think that this happens to me more than I’d care to admit. And then I started to cry in the car, so ashamed of myself for getting lost again. Then I thought of someone I know who has trials much worse than getting lost,  and I said to myself, “It is what it is”. Don’t let this ruin such an otherwise beautiful day. Instead, get on the right route and have a GREAT day. And later on, figure out what went wrong so that I don’t make that particular mistake again.

I did go on to have a great day; I even bought a pair of shoes!!

I am lighter
My heart is lighter
My body is lighter
My outlook is lighter

My Book is Finished but I Need a Title!

One year ago I wrote a letter here on my blog – a letter to  my cookbook. I apologized for not finishing on time and stated that I would try to do better…. In my naivety I said that I would finish by the end of the summer 2010. I didn’t realize that I would have to edit and re-edit and then do it again. I didn’t realize that some of my style would change over the course of a year. I guess I was ‘dreaming in colour’, as they say in French.

Well guess what” IT’S FINISHED!!!!!

Well, the cookbook/memoir part is finished; I am now working on the introduction, dedication and pictures for the dividers. I have been talking to a publishing company and I hope to have things in order for them before the end of the month.

The only thing that stymies me at the moment is a very important part – the title! I had thought in the beginning I would call it A Lifetime Through Recipes, but that doesn’t really convey the fun aspect or the essence of the book. The book is divided into seven chapters, each one with stories and recipes from different aspects of my life, like growing up in Newfoundland, being Lebanese, my years in Quebec and so on. I’d like to have the word ‘memoir’ somewhere in the title.

Any title suggestions out there? If I use your suggestion and you would like it, I’ll send you a free cookbook!


Stay tuned!

My Food Program

I had said a couple of weeks ago that I would tell you what I am eating on this wonderful program. You’ll be surprised at the amount and frequency of my meals. At first I thought that in order to lose weight you had to just about starve yourself, and any diet I had followed in the past was just not sustainable because of that. It’s what makes Transformation so different.

Six days a week I eat six meals per day. Yes you read right – six meals per day. Now they are not huge meals but they are satisfying. Each meal must contain a protein and a carbohydrate and any amount of vegetables. It doesn’t take a lot of time to prepare; in fact, at any given time I can have three meals waiting in my purse if I’m out for the day. So here is an example of what I’m eating:

7:30  1 whole wheat toast with peanut or almond butter and a half banana

10:30 Protein shake with 2/3 cup of blueberries

1:00 Salad with chicken on top and 2 ryvita crackers

3:30 Protein bar

6:00 salmon with rice and steamed broccoli

8:30 apple with 1/2 cup of cottage cheese

In between I drink a few glasses of water, not enough to be waterlogged, but enough to keep me hydrated.

On the 7th day I can eat whatever I want. This is the time that all the cravings I had during the week can be satisfied: chocolate, pizza, fries, ice cream, whatever I want. When you are on a diet of sorts, the body starts to hold on to the fat and you stop losing. Did that ever happen to you? It always happened to me and at that point I would quit. Having a free day interrupts this phenomenon. The body doesn’t need to hang on to the fat because you are eating the fatty foods and sugar once a week.

The beauty of this food program is that you can get all your food at the grocery store and so it doesn’t cost any more than buying unhealthy food. And because you are eating six times a day, small meals, you are never too full and you are  never hungry. During the week if I have a craving I write it down and save it for my free day.

There is a book that Bill Phillips wrote called Eating for Life; that is my cookbook of choice as it has plenty of balanced, low fat meals…and they’re all good. In fact, they are delicious!

There is more to this program than just food and exercise. I’ll tell you about one of the other parts next time.

Keep healthy!

I Wanted to be Ten Again

Did you hear the story about the woman who was turning 40 and her husband asked her what she wanted for her birthday? She said, “I want to be ten again.” He told her he would do his best –

So on the day of her birthday he took her out to a fairground and took her on all the rides: the rollercoaster, the loop de loop, crazy teacups and the merry go round. Then he bought her some cotton candy and he even won her a giant stuffed monkey at the balloon-busting contest. After that he took her to a fancy ice cream parlour and treated her royally to an ice cream sundae. To finish up they went to a toy store where she was able to choose anything she wanted. Finally at the end of the day they arrived home and she was exhausted. He asked her if she had enjoyed her day. Her answer?

“You idiot! When I said I wanted to be ten again I didn’t mean my age; I meant my pants size!”

Don’t we all want to be ten again? I know I do. As my weight crept up the past few years I graduated from size ten to twelve and then even those started to be tight. I wanted to be ten again so badly.

The good news is in: I AM ten again!! I went to a store the other day and started trying on some nice black jeans – the ones I finally bought are size ten! This is a milestone for me. The program is working. Trust the process, they said, and they were right.

Now what do I want next?

I want to be eight again!

My Exercise Plan

Now it has been six weeks since I crossed the abyss – I have been having fun! Once the decision was made to jump in and DO something about my weight, I jumped in all the way. For the past six weeks I have been exercising with more intensity than ever before. Three days a week I do 25 minutes of cardio. I’ve been told that you don’t have to exercise for hours on end to see results, but you do have to do it with intensity. I mean, if you’re not sweating, then you’re not working intensely. So I walk for 2 minutes, jog for 2 minutes and then run for 1 minute. That’s one cycle. I repeat this cycle five times for a total of 25 minutes. Sweat? Yes I sweat, but I’d rather call it ‘glisten’. In fact, the other day I was on the treadmill and I felt drops on my bare shoulder; I kept looking at the ceiling to see if there was a leak. There was no leak – it was me, sweating so much that it was dripping on my shoulder! Wow!

For three other days a week I do weight training. I do upper body one day and lower body the next time. So that gives me a break from the cardio and running. I do all the shoulder muscles, back, abdominal, quads and glutes. And it only takes about 30 minutes each time. So 25 minutes one day and 30 minutes the next for six days does not take up too much of the day.

In the past six weeks I have lost weight, and my body has firmed up to the point that already I have changed jeans sizes! I am thrilled, to say the least. I feel stronger and I sleep much better than I have in the past five years. In addition to that, I feel much more optimistic, positive and in charge of my life. Who would have known that a post menopausal woman could feel so great?

Stay tuned for what I am eating…

I Crossed the Abyss!

I had all the tools I needed, but they were just sitting there, not being used. As winter gave way to spring I was so dissatisfied with my weight and appearance that I just had to do something. Easter weekend came; I had three dinners that weekend: one at home on Saturday, one at a friend’s place on Sunday, and one with family on Monday. I kept thinking of all the videos, the book, the site all waiting for me as I ate my way through Saturday and Sunday.

Then it happened.

Sunday evening I made a decision that is changing my life. In the Transformation book, Bill talks about knowing all the things you must do in order to have a healthy life, but they are not much good to you until you decide to DO something about it. It’s called ‘crossing the abyss’ – moving from knowing to doing. That’s what happened to me on Easter Sunday evening. I decided that there will never be a better time to start to get my life in control. There will always be special occasions, outings, dinners and parties. The time is now!

So I went on the Transformation site, went to a forum and asked for help – to find an accountability partner and also to find an accountability group to join. I got a few responses almost right away and I ended up in a group called Transforming with Marty and Carin. Both of them are Transformation champions; they started out at unhealthy weights, followed the 18 week Transformation plan and really came out on top, so they know what they are talking about. So I report in to the forum every day to be accountable, to vent, to learn and to encourage others. In addition to being part of a group, I found an accountability partner, or should I say, she found  me. And I report in to her every day as well. That was five weeks ago.