Trying to Find Balance

The past few weeks have been a blur.  As the school year has progressed, life has gotten progressively busier.  Part of it is by choice, and part of it is the natural progression of the school year.  And yet another part of it is the new habits and behaviors one must adopt when choosing to have weight loss surgery.

We talked in our weekly weight loss support group tonight about how life tends to drastically change as new behaviors are implemented that were not previously a part of one’s life and how this might place strain on relationships you have with others.  I am fortunate in that my social support network understands the importance of these changes, and that they are supportive of my decision to take control of my health in this way.  I am also fortunate in that my husband is following the exact same path as I am, and that he too is sympathetic to the behavior changes, because he is making them too.

In all of this, though, I feel as though I am losing balance–there is a disturbance in the Force that is Me.

I feel like something is missing, and I feel like that something is balance.

Work has not been as stressful as it has been in the past, but the sheer bulk of what I am dealing with this year is certainly enough to cause great stress.  I think the upset I’m feeling has more to do with all the other things I do that take away time from being able to attend to my health needs.  I’m involved with Rotary, my university’s local affiliate of our alumni association, I am a private tutor, and I lead a professional learning community of local AP Bio teachers.  All of these things keep me busier than a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest.

I’m doing okay at the food part of this new lifestyle.  I say “okay” because every once in a while I’ll eat potatoes.  OMG WTF U DOING is how some might respond to that.  But you know, I’m eating A FREAKING OUNCE of them at a time, at most 2 ounces a day.  I don’t see this as a bad thing.  I’ll eat a dozen Goldfish crackers or two saltines.  OMFG CARBS! some people say.   I say my brain needs glucose since it is fueled exclusively by carbohydrates.  I know that there are some that think it’s insane I eat cheese.  OMG IT’S SO FATTY!  But you know what?  Cheese scrambled into my morning egg helps keep me satiated until I eat my mid-morning snack.  And that’s another thing–snacks.  OMG WHY DO YOU EAT SNACKS DON’T YOU KNOW THAT’S WHY YOU’RE FAT some people say.  I say, if I didn’t snack, I would NEVER meet my protein goals without shakes.  I refuse to be dependent on protein shakes for my source of protein, unless forced to for medical reasons.  I meet my protein goals just about every single day exclusively from food.  I won’t lie, there are some days when I fall just short, so I will sip on an Isopure, but I don’t make this a habit.

I rock at the planning part of this new lifestyle.  To wit:  every Saturday, I make a grocery list, shop for All. The. Things! and then cook the two recipes I choose on Sunday afternoon.  I measure and pack out my lunches and dinners for the week into my WeanGreen bowls so that I can just grab them, stick them in my lunchbox and go.  When I get home each night, dinner is already cooked; I just have to heat it and eat it.  So in this regard, I am doing things RIGHT.

Sorry, I went off on a tangent there.  This was about balance and trying to find it.

I am NOT doing okay at the exercise part of this new lifestyle.  I need to get more activity in my week.  Walking is not enough.  I feel like I’m getting to that point in my weight loss where I need to start doing more cardio activity and strength training.  But where to make the time?  I refuse to do early morning workouts.  I teach a class at 8:15 in the morning and for me to workout before school would require me to engage in behaviors I know are unsustainable for me in the long run:  rising at 4:30 to be at the gym by 5, to leave at 6 to come home, shower, eat breakfast, dress and hurry off to school by 7:30.  Not. Gonna. Happen.  I did that for nearly a year a couple of years ago and was largely miserable due to the lack of sleep.

And I don’t sleep enough as it is.  One of my friends chides me every day about the paltry amount of sleep I get.  I get roughly 6 hours a night, and I know it’s not enough but it takes me so long to wind down, and by the time I do, it’s nearly 11 pm.  I wish I could learn to go to bed earlier but sometimes I think it would be easier to just sleep a little later. 🙂  Unfortunately my school schedule doesn’t allow it, so 6 hours a night it is.

So, balance.

Monday after school, my husband is heading to the gym since he has been cleared for full activity–his six week checkup was today and the doctor was very, very pleased with his progress.   I am going to tag along and ride the recumbent bike, and I might even walk the treadmill even though I hate it with a passion.  Hopefully I’ll start to find the balance I seek, and then everything else will unfold as it should.  At my six month checkup in January, I want my doctor’s jaw to drop and I want him to be wowed by my progress at that point.  But if I’m going to get there, I need to get. On. It.

And that requires balance.  I really hope I find it soon.

Now, FOOD:


Today’s food choices, from upper left: multivitamin and calcium supplements x2; roasted seasoned red potatoes and honey barbecue chicken drumsticks; Rudy’s smoked ham with a scrambled egg and cheese; Sargento reduced fat cheese stick; Trader Joe’s turkey jerky; Trader Joe’s dark chocolate caramel wedges; chicken taco filling. Not shown: Goldfish crackers.

2 responses to “Trying to Find Balance

  1. Balance is so hard. I am with you on the early morning workouts. I did it, too, but it was a baaaad thing for all those around me in the long run. I am also about at 6hours of sleep per night. Just stress keeps from from usually sleeping longer (can’t wind down earlier or up in the middle of the night or up super early).
    So glad to hear your husband is doing so well. If he goes to the gym, maybe it will help you find time to go, just to be with him. I know I always do better when I go with someone. I mean, I like it, it is just hard to make that time open up. I hope that makes sense.
    Life is a work in progress. You are doing great! Keep it up!

  2. “I say my brain needs glucose since it is fueled exclusively by carbohydrates.” I would recommend you read up on this because this statement doesn’t jibe with the science and you seem to like science! You don’t need dietary carbohydrates to provide fuel for the brain. Unsurprisingly, our bodies are more sophisticated than that. For the keto-adapted (i.e., what happens when you are on a low carb diet), the brain runs on mostly ketone bodies, with about 30-40 of its energy coming from glucose, which the body can generate in the absence of dietary carbohydrates. Here is a good explanation for a layperson:

    Finally, I know that I would never ever say to anyone OMG WTF U DOING because that would be pretty freaking rude. I don’t even think that to myself. Everyone makes their own choices and you make the choices that work for you. Getting all judgey about food choices is counterproductive.

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