Sunday, August 16, 2009

Better or Thinner??

I only have three minutes to summarize three days of thoughts, ponderings, and insights, so I better make this snappy. I've just poured out my thoughts ever so eloquently in my journal, but I have to finish a birthday story for my niece and I've put it off long enough while redesigning my background and figuring out how to put a "ticker" on my site. Look right for more details. Ain't I handy? Now, to explain the ticker.
We are almost to September. The year is halfway gone and I am wondering what I have created so far. This was a year that I wanted to focus on creation--creating a stronger, more disciplined body, and creating some written work as well. If I were grading myself, I think I'd give myself a B-. I mean, I did bring a child into the world, which is pretty darn creative, so that should seriously bump up the average, but still I am not where I thought I wanted to be. I've had intense ebbs and flows in my varying weight loss plans and visions. The writing plan has picked up nicely however. I am writing birthday stories for my nieces and nephews as gifts and having a marvelous time doing it. Hopefully a publisher will soon have a marvelous time reading it and I will achieve my dream of publication. World famous author? Probably not, but who wants all that hubbub. I digress.

So, in the last week, as I consumed 5-6 Reynolds Original Zuchini Chocolate Chip Raisin Walnut cookies in a day (Isaac and I created our own recipe--he was very excited about that) I have thought long and hard about where my body is and where I want it to be and why I want it to be there. (Remember how I said I only had 3 minutes? I've now gone 4 minutes over, but I just want to get this out there. This is probably going to be a longish post. . . sorry) I've had this "goal" weight for years, all because a long time ago there was a woman I knew that was my same height and I thought she looked so great, strong, healthy, and not crazy skinny. I asked her how much she weighed and her answer became my mecca, my zen, my point where I thought I would surely be totally happy with myself. That is now only 15 pounds away. Of course, I also once thought that I would be totally content with myself if I could only get to a size 12. I've been there awhile, and the sublime self-satisfaction ain't quite happening.

On my run on Saturday (ahem, 7.5 miles) I did alot of thinking. I thought about why I want to lose weight. Will I be a better person with 15 pounds less of me to lug around? Will I be happier? If so, why? And will my current Weight Watchers trajectory get me there? What do I really want to be like, not just look like, but really be like? In my ideal vision of Morgen, I see someone strong, healthy, and vibrant, who eats wholesome nutritious foods, and rarely eats anything refined. Right now, I'm not really that. Even on days when I stay within "points," I nibble at processed dietish foods, sneak chocolate, and squeeze every drop I can out of my calorie allowance for the day. Doing that within the WW limits could eventually carve 15 pounds off of me, but will I be a better person? Will I finally stop thinking about food so much? Will I be able to be in a room with brownies and be able to think about anything but how many of them can I eat and still have a successful weigh in tomorrow? I don't think so. Am I a believer in the Weight Watchers system? Oh heavenstobetsy yes. It has changed my life drastically. It helped me take 55 pounds off and recreated me in several ways. But, I think I've decided to focus on a new plan of which I am an even bigger fan. . . God's Diet Plan, a.k.a: "The Word of Wisdom."

To sum up: Lots of grains, fruits, veggies, with little to no meat, and nix on the refined sweet stuff. In honor of good old Thoreau, I am going to simplify, simplify, simplify. I shan't be living in a cabin in the middle of the woods (though that is tempting), but I am eliminating points, tracking, and all other dieting constrictions. And oh yes, I think I am even eliminating weigh-ins. I've decided that it is time for this to be about being a better Morgen, not just a thinner Morgen. And now, the experiment begins.

What will happen if I go a year without sugar? Will I lose weight and/or inches? Will I have more energy? Will I stop craving it? Will I feel purer and closer to the Spirit? Will I survive Halloween, Thanksgiving, and insanely overwhelming chocolate monthly cravings? I have, right now, zero ability to regulate the sweet stuff. I think if I conquer it, I will grow closer to Christ in new ways, and feel a strength in myself that I've yet to taste. And I won't sneak snickers bars on solo grocery trips because noone can see. And I won't scarf chocolate chips and then chew trident as quickly as possible in hopes that my husband won't smell or taste (kissing. . . gross I know) the chocolate in my mouth. My hope? That in a year, I will have a relationship with sweets that will enable me to have dessert on birthdays and major holidays and stop there. I will tell myself that the world will still be producing chocolate in a year, and I am pretty sure that cookies will be in existence by then too. It is only for a year.

So, here is my plan:
-No refined sugar, except in yogurt (I am trying to eat from the Superfoods list of 14 foods, and yogurt is one of them and eating straight plain yogurt sounds about as tempting as raw oysters to be honest)
-Honey, juice, and pure maple syrup are a go
-No eating after 8pm

How will this go? How will I do it? What will I learn? What will I eat on my birthday? Will I feel better about myself? These are very good questions that perhaps only I am interested in, but I am going to pretend that you are really interested in them as well, and so I will write about them. Daily, as a matter of fact. My plan--have you noticed that I really like plans?--is to jot something in here every day. Accountability is the name of the game. I believe that the Word of Wisdom is the most inspired set of health guidelines out there and I fully expect to tap into every promise the Lord has made. I know I will have treasures of knowledge opened up to me, and maybe one of those trinkets will help someone out there trying to move more, eat less, and feel happier in their skin. These bodies of ours are gifts from God, and I am going to focus a little more from now on on taking better care of it, and not just trying to shrink it.

Well, I am now about 20 minutes over my allotted writing time, and I am totally okay with that. I'm just happy to get these ideas out there and get this goal going. My dear husband just made zuchini muffins that probably taste really really good since they have 2 cups of sugar in them. I mean, really, doesn't that make them cake? Who are we kidding tossing this "bread" word around? Anyway, tomorrow morning we'll sit down for breakfee and everyone will dig into said muffins and it will be my first morning standing out a bit. I haven't told my better half about this goal. Why? Because I am more than a little ashamed that I'm setting this goal. . . again. This isn't the first time I've sworn off the demon white powder of sweetness. So, I'm sheepish to say that I'm really honestly for real going to do it this time. I want to go for it a month before I announce it officially to him, and then maybe I'll believe it more myself and then he can believe it more himself. So, tomorrow, I think I'll go for the oatmeal non-muffin version of breakfast.

I've prattled enough. I hope that you'll join me for this journey, and I hope that some nugget of this might help you have a better day. Once in awhile, I hope I can even be funny and entertaining. I'll come up with some sugar free knock knock jokes or something. But, mostly, if this is a path that sounds a little familiar to you, then maybe we can help each other tap into the Lord's goodness and show our gratitude to Him for these glorious bodies He has given us a chance to experience.

Well, good night sugary world. This is Morgen, signing off.


  1. Hey there HOTTIE! Love the new cut, and for real, you look like a severe hottie. I love this post. I am interested in going on your journey with you and offering any support I an. I appreciate your honesty, vulnerability, and most of all, your drive to progress and to do it for the right reasons. I know you will be blessed in this. Some very very familiar material in here. And yes, it's a ride I still take myself some days. Why do we torture ourselves so? And spend so much of ourselves and our lives doing it? Find those answers for me would ya? Much love sister!!

  2. Hey Love -

    Question. I want to start running but haven't for 1.5 years (before I had Ashton). At what point did you start running before you lost a butload of weight? What plan did you use? How did you avoid injury?

    Thanks everso -

  3. Thanks Julie, I'll work on getting those answers for you. Amanda, I started running and joined WW at about the same time. But, with running, I think the key is to start slow. I had tried to start running so many times with big huge goals in mind and only ended up frustrated. So, I decided to go out and run until I didn't like it anymore and then I'd start walking. So, my first "run" was probably about 5 minutes of running, and then about a 30 minute walk. But, I just kept on that plan until I was jogging the whole time. My first major running accomplishment was a 10K, and I think I actually walked at least two miles of it. Listen listen listen to your body. Even now, when my body likes running, it likes it sooo much more with a solid warmup. I walk for about 3-5 minutes and take the first mile at a nice slow shuffle. Then, I am ready to have a decent run. I really like having an event to work towards. I'd poke around and find a fun 5K to train for, and go for it. Maybe find one in a month or so just to finish, walking and running, and also register for one for a few (or several!) months away that you want to completely run. Other injury preventions? Good shoes. Salt Lake Running Company is awesome. They were the first place I got great advice and shoes that really helped. They will videotape your feet on a treadmill and look at how your feet hit and recommend a shoe that will work well for you. That makes an enormous difference! Stretching before doesn't really help, just take time to warm up gradually, but stretching after is great. It doesn't necessarily fight injury, but it helps avoid soreness. Wow, that is a whole lot of answer! Let's go jogging together at Homecoming everyone!