5 Weight Loss Rules I’m Glad I Followed

The before and after pictures I posted yesterday surprised me when I looked at them together. I’ve lost less than twenty pounds, but the difference in how I feel and look and feel about how I look is enormous. I almost didn’t post those pics out of embarrassment. I did decide to post them because I wanted to be honest about the dramatic effect sugar has on my health. I wanted to be honest about myself. The truth is, I was excited to be at Comic Con. But I was also exhausted. My clothes were uncomfortable. My skin was uncomfortable. The pics remind…

Get Up Early

Advice to myself: Get up early. Dumb early. Before five o’clock a.m. early. Avoid the snooze button. Drink a glass of water. Meditate while the coffee water boils. Then journal. Then screen. Then gym, or run and yoga. Start every day this way because when I do I ride a high of positive feeling that lasts through the evening. Start every day this way because I am a healthy person with time for everything and when people ask me how I am able to do all of the things, the answer rests in three numbers: 4:40. As in a.m. Most…

When I Spill Coffee on My Laptop Say Thanks

I had an entire year once of annoying events. It started on January 1st when a tree fell on our house in a terrible storm. Our kitchen floor became alarmingly spongy. The water heater broke. An airport van driver ran into my car door in the Safeway parking lot and drove off without even giving me her name. Money shrank as the list of wrong and broken things grew. A strange string of other distressing people and events served to vex us throughout the year. We invented a comforting mantra: Well, that was annoying but at least it wasn’t evil. As a sort of bookend…

Enough is Enough

When I was young I loved extreme exercise. I loved mile swims for charity. I loved swim practices that began with groundwork lunges while I carried a friend on my back. My favorite weekends were spent at dance seminars in the city involving six intense hour-long classes back-to-back. I danced until I felt like puking and then danced some more. I loved it. In my twenties, I trained for a triathlon. I ran races. I exercised twice a day sometimes. After having my babies, I re-dedicated myself to extreme exercise. I ran in the mornings before work no matter the weather, and…

Exercise Is Not Penance

Workouts don’t buy food. The idea that working out every day lets me eat whatever I want with no consequence was never true. Not for me. I can be pretty fit even when carrying thirty more pounds on my body than is strictly necessary. I can charge up a mountain and feel great doing it. But if I want my clothes to fit properly without having to buy all new clothes, I can’t expect even a rigorous exercise program to make up for a diet that has sugar in it. Also, the value of a good workout is not negated when I eat…

Exercise Every Day

A few years ago at a particularly stressful point of my life, I had given up exercising altogether. I was in crisis mode. Morning exercise was impossible because I had to get to school early to get my workload done. The day was long and by the time I got home, I needed to make dinner and be present for my family. I worked through vacations and weekends as well to meet the requirements of this particular job. My health was my last concern. Don’t even get me started on how many packages of Donettes from the 7-Eleven I ate a week…

Holiday Recovery in 5 Steps

1. Have a glass of water. Drink it all at once.  Fill up the glass. Drink that one too. Feel my internal organs say thank God she’s stopped eating for a second. 2.  Yoga. Go to a class. Or set my timer for twenty minutes and do ten sun salutations. If I don’t know what those are, look them up.  Then do a warrior pose, sit ups and happy baby. Try a few pushups and feel surprised by the ability to do them.  Or to even move at all. 3.  Meditate. Set my timer for five minutes and sit there with…