Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Obsessing Over the Numbers

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Christmas time usually poses as a big challenge for most people who are trying to lose weight. What with all the parties, food, alcohol, sleepless nights and less time for physical activity, it's no wonder why some dieters get obsessed with the numbers on the scale at the end of the month.

After losing a total of 15lbs in two months time, I would be the first to admit that when December was ushered in, I was one of those who were fearful of what this month would do to my diet, its impact on my hard work and the not so beautiful changes it may bring to me. All my fears were put to rest when I read this great post from Escape from ObesityFocus, Obsession and Balance

The article talked about the worries of one person who is on the road to wellness. She also made mention that there was a time that she was so focused on the weight loss that there were times that she almost "Forgot" the other real life stuff that she has to deal with. Finally, she said that she hopes that come January, she would be on the road to a fresh new start and being able to balance everything that life has to offer.

What I'm trying to say is - I shouldn't be too obsessed with the numbers on the scale to the point that I forget what the season is all about. This season is NOT about me, my plans, the numbers on the scale or the sulking should I not lose weight. This season is about celebrating the joy of being with family, friends, feeling the spirit of what life is all about because a special baby was born.

This season is about giving something to others, the gift of life. The gift of showing that there's much more to life than just the numbers on the scale and the size of your clothes. Am I saying that it's okay for me to binge and/or overeat? NO! What I'm saying is, I should live a life that is inspirational. The weight loss is not just for myself. It's my gift to my family because if I remain healthy (even without weight loss) then I can assure my family that I can enjoy holiday activities with them. Keeping myself healthy is one way of telling my family that I value them and that I want to spend more time with them by reducing the risks of health issues that are related to being overweight. 

So, this month, (and I hope in the months to come) I will not obsess over the numbers. I will try to find a balance in life. I will make sure that this journey will affect others positively as much as it affects me. I will try to inspire those whom I love and hopefully those who read this blog that health and life are the most precious gifts given to you by our creator and they are the most precious gifts that you can give to your loved ones as well as to yourself.

Have a happy and healthy holidays!


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Monday, December 19, 2011

Creating a Lifestyle You Can Live With

Blinkie from Shabby Blogs


For me dieting is always a challenge. Anyone who says otherwise may have a different opinion. Reading up on my friend's blog, I noticed that she continued with the Beck Diet Solution. The first time that she posted about it, I asked her permission if I can do the same thing. Thankfully, she said yes. 

Here is the continuation of my post Thinefits - Day 1 of the Beck Diet Solution: List Down All the Benefits of Being Thin.

Day 2 talks about Picking 2 Reasonable Diets

There are so many diets to choose from these days. Many may swear that this one diet works for them, while others may say the exact opposite. The dilemma can be further be complicated by the fact that you have other people in the house living with you who are not into following any diets. 

The solution to this dilemma is choosing a diet that is acceptable to all those concerned. When I first started my journey, this was one source of concern for me. I mean, I can't make my husband follow a diet that is designed for someone who is losing weight. There are only two of us in the house and cooking one meal for myself and another for hubby is not only a hassle, it is also impractical.

My solution - cook something that is healthy and would still be delicious. I still cook our regular meals like pasta, pork and some other stuff that some dieters may frown upon. Hold it! I made some adjustments to those dishes. Take example pork - instead of choosing the fatty cuts, I go for the leaner cuts. For pasta, I try to stay away from pre-made sauces and instead cook my own marinara/spaghetti sauce.

See, there's always a work around! Be creative and you can still enjoy the tempting dishes without the excess calories!

Day 3 is about Eat Sitting Down

It is said that we should all sit down and enjoy what ever it is that we are eating. However, Jenn (my friend and the owner of the book) posted some interesting points. 

To summarize it, we may not be eating down to enjoy all our meals. Maybe we take a little portion of something when we pass by the dinner table, a colleagues desk or even when we open the fridge. These actions can be classified as eating urges that we can all curb.

The best way to do this - ask yourself if it's really worth sabotaging your diet and health by taking a small piece of that sinful cake in the fridge. When I say sabotaging, it doesn't mean that you stay away from all the food that you usually eat, what I'm trying to say is - Are you really hungry when you took that one bite?

Day 4 focuses on Give Yourself Credit

For all the hard work that you do, make sure that you take time to give yourself a pat on the back. The book suggests that you put a coin or paper money in a container every time you make the right decision. It can be for completing your exercise routine, staying away from sweets or any other small victory that you may have accomplished in a day.

Hmmm, personally, I think I'll go ahead and start this reward jar by the first day of the new year. Isn't it great that while you're shedding off the pounds you're also able to save some cash in the process because of this small reward system? That's motivation all right! 

Maybe after a year of putting some money rewards for myself, I'll be able to buy a new gadget. Kind of like a bigger reward for a year's hard work. 

Just like what the blinky says, Life is not about finding something, it's about creating one. Dieting is a lifestyle change and that is something that I am willing to create for a new, better and healthier me! Cheers!


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This new lifestyle means so many things. Personally? It means that life is about having fun by enjoying all the small victories, the things that you do and most especially it means that I can choose to be healthy but I am still allowed to enjoy the simple pleasures that this world has to offer - including cakes and ice cream!


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Sunday, November 27, 2011

Self Acceptance

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I've heard this statement/question from the movie X-Men first class:

"You want society to accept you, but you can't accept yourself." (Magneto to Mystique)

When I heard this, the question I asked myself was this:

"Why am I doing all these [working out, dieting, etc]? Is it so that society can accept me, or is it because I want to do something good for and to myself?"

The truth: I'm doing this for myself and no one else. Who cares if I don't get the nod of those around me? Who cares if they don't notice the efforts? Who cares if for everyone all is still the same?

I am responsible for my well being. I have accepted who I am. This acceptance of myself is what I want to share on this blog. 

No, I don't accept the fact that I am fat and that's it. Here's what I mean: 

  • I accept that I am fat/overweight. 
  • I accept the fact that I CAN do something about it. 
  • I accept the fact that I am responsible for my own well being.
  • I accept the fact that society does not, will not and should not dictate my self esteem and self acceptance.
  • I accept the responsibilities of my life. 
I don't live in the shadows anymore. I am not living in shame and fear anymore. I am not going to hide behind every other excuse there is available. I am NOT the same person. I changed for myself so that others may benefit from the change.


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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Eating Disorders and How I Overcame Them

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There was a time that I experienced three of the worst possible combinations when it came to unhealthy dieting. I guess it was a blessing in disguise that I decided to shift majors and got my degree in Psychology. Also, I guess part of the blessing then was that I loved and still love Abnormal Psychology, Clinical Psychology and Mental Health and Hygiene during my college years.

Here is the list of the battles that I went through when I was in college and even a little after.

Anorexia Nervosa and I got all these symptoms then:

> Rapid weight loss
> Fear of being or getting fat
> I had an abnormal view of my weight and body
> Loss of regular menstrual cycles

It was a good thing that I noticed these unhealthy views of myself and body before it was too late. In order to maintain at least the weight that I thought then was normal I noticed that I had the attitude of a non-purging type of bulimic who used fasting, those unknown diet pills and excessive exercise to lose the presumed extra weight.

I was ashamed of my anorexic view of my body that I resorted to binge eating, hiding food or eating when no one was looking, as well as over eating to the point that my stomach started to hurt.

Then I said to myself, binge eating and the fear of being overweight can be fought off by exercise. I then became a person who was obsessed with exercising - Compulsive Exercise. I enrolled in a gym and I made sure that I always hit the gym after classes, sometimes once before going to school then again after school. I went to aerobics classes twice a day at one hour each per session and worked out, lifted weights for another hour, make that twice a day and I was working out for four hours daily! This compulsive exercise behavior or anorexia athletica ruled my life for three straight months. After my gym membership expired, I resorted to exercising at home.

I wouldn't say that I got panic attacks when I didn't exercise, but definitely, I was anxious and nervous if I wasn't able to exercise every.single.day. In order to get rid of the guilt feelings after over-indulging, I would exercise for about 4 hours every single day or sometimes I would keep exercising even if I felt tired, dizzy or faint. 

Those were some of my lowest points when it came to my health. Overcoming these problems took me so much effort and unfortunately resulted in weight gain. 

Today though this journey to wellness does NOT include any of the three disorders mentioned above. I have recognized the symptoms sometime ago and I am now more aware of my body.

The plan - eat healthier, make healthier food choices and exercise daily with routines that have a 90minute cap.

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It's hard to admit that I had some eating disorders when I was younger, but if I don't admit it, then I just might fall back into its grips again - to that I say, NO MORE.

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If you're worried about anyone that you suspect has an eating disorder, please look for the following danger signs:

Anorexia Nervosa

> A person with anorexia may be underweight or exhibits a fear of maintaining a normal body weight. The fear of getting or being fat.
> The loss of interest in social activities
> An anorexic may have dry skin, thin bones, experience weakness, constipation 
> Obvious rapid weight loss
> Excessive exercising

Bulimia Nervosa

> Excessive eating within a short time span
> Purging, vomiting, use of laxatives, diet pills (without prescription or an actual need for them)
> Body signs that point to purging like puffy cheeks, calloused knuckles because of use to induce vomiting, 

Compulsive Exercise Danger Signs

> Feeling anxious when one skips a day of exercising or when one CAN'T take a day off from working out because it rules your everyday life and routine
> Putting unnecessary strain on the body by working out HALF the day or between four (4) and five (5) hours a day
> When you DON'T listen to the signals your body is sending to your brain

For more information regarding eating disorders, you can go HERE



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Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Getting a Tattoo

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My First Tattoo

I have always wanted to get a tattoo, especially after I turned 18. However, to avoid giving my mother a heart attack, I refrained from getting ink on my skin until she told me that she would be leaving to stay in the United States for good.

It was a bittersweet moment, bitter because I know that I would be missing my mom and sweet because finally I would be able to get my ink.

So, how did I choose my design? I have always wanted to get something that reflects my culture and having an ink written in the old Filipino alphabet called Baybayin suited my style. I opted for the revised version of the alphabet which included several letters which were missing from the original Filipino alphabet.

On the left side of the triquetra is my husband's name, on the right is my name and below that would be our last name. The Triquetra for me symbolizes body, mind and spirit, while the pentacle is for protection as well as a symbol of nature - Earth, Fire, Water, Earth and the Spirit all encompassed by this circle called life and this universe that we all live in.


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My Second Tattoo
The second piece which completes the bracelet on my right forearm is an art piece drawn and sketched by the man I love. I first saw this when we were still going out and I fell in love with it immediately.

What does it mean? For me it is to show that I appreciate my husband's art. What connection does it have to me aside from being my husband's art? I was born in June and the flower for that month is the Rose, which signifies beauty and love.

Black roses are not found in nature, but can sometimes be seen in floral shops. This flower may symbolize death and mourning, but for some, three are much more deeper meanings of this unnaturally colored rose.

> Death that starts rebirth, the start of something new
> Deep and rare devotion - like the flower itself
> The symbol for everything that is dark in life
> Mysterious and elusive

For me, it simply means that I adore my husband and that I would love it if he realizes that I would devote this life and even the next to him and our future family.

Tied in with the mystical symbols on my first tattoo it means that I am in search for a deeper devotion to my faith, the openness to the mysteries of the world, the acceptance of the darkness within and yet still blooming to show that there is light in the world.

Now that these tattoos are a year old, I will be getting two new ones hopefully this coming Saturday, the 20th of November. A butterfly bracelet and a dark angel below my nape.



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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Excited to Get My New Tattoos

The design for my angel tattoo at the back of my neck
The Symbolism

There are so many meanings associated to an angel tattoo. Most of these meanings symbolize spiritual awareness, protection, a messenger, higher thinking, clarity and understanding. Some say that dark angel tattoos symbolize the darker side of life, a person's love for this darkness, their acceptance of it and just to remind them that it exists.

Personally, I am getting this tattoo because it symbolizes who I am. A person with two sides - the light and the dark, my acceptance of both sides, my spiritual path and protection.

The design for my butterfly bracelet on my left forearm

Butterfly Symbolism

It is said that the butterfly is a symbol for transformation, transition, celebration, lightness, time and soul. 

For me, it is a reminder to accept the changes that I am about to undergo, from being overweight to someone who is quite Divalicious. It will remind me to accept these changes in my body and of course my environment without questions and embracing it wholly. It is also spiritual for me, the journey to wellness also affects my whole person, the way I see my faith and how I practice it.

Me getting this tattoo is so timely, as I am determined more than ever to change my physical self - from a fat caterpillar to a very beautiful and delicate butterfly. It fits me to a tee - because just like a butterfly who transformed, at the end of this journey to health, wellness and fitness, I will be changed, I will be so different from the time that I decided to do something good for myself. 

On Saturday I will be inked yet again and I am excited to show to the world how my journey to self awareness turns. Goodbye to the old me and hello Ms. Divalicious Butterfly!



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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Beauty of Loving

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Some of you may find it weird that I put so much faith in those furry little cute things called dogs. I must admit that I do. 

Let me tell you why.

We had our first dog and we were there while he battled with parvo. He only left us when we told him that it was okay for him to rest and stop fighting for us. He tried to fight so hard and I personally have yet to see loyalty like that.

Our second dog, he was diagnosed with liver problems. The time that we learned about it, we decided that we would sacrifice our hobbies, sell our gear just to support his hospitalization and medications. By some miracle, we got enough money without having to give up some part of our lives. I guess that little guy in the photo said that we don't have to stop living so that he can live. 

I came across this quote "The more I learn about others, the more I like my dog." I must say that there are times that I feel that way, sad but it's the truth. The beauty here is that dogs love you unconditionally. They don't care about what you did, what's important is you, your presence, your love and that's it.

I guess what I want to say is, there are those who don't understand the special bond between people and their furry little babies. And I do hope that one day, these people would open their hearts and minds to that bond so that they can experience the joys and stop judging those who spend time, effort and money on their furry family members.

Brightest Blessings!

Halie





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Monday, May 16, 2011

Lost

Forever to me you are lost
This heart of mine aches when in my mind you cross
Pain comes in unmeasurable waves
To remember the love I buried in a grave

Your face that I will no longer see
Haunts me in my sleep that is so deep
The gentle voice that in my ears still ring
Immeasurable pain in my being it brings

I have hoped that this love I still feel
Had died the moment our goodbye was sealed
Why then is the feeling of hurt so real
Tell me please how to forget you because that I can't do still.

An original poem written by Nathalie Santos - Dayo
copyright 05/16/2011

Brightest Blessings!

Halie

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Blogging Etiquette

I've been blogging since 2007 or so and when I returned to web writing (blogging) after my years of absence, I was surprised about the so many changes in the blogosphere.

Here are some things about me and how I write that some of those who follow this blog and actually read it may have noticed.

- I'm very much opinionated.. I voice out what's inside my head without fear. Some may actually find it condescending, rude, judgmental, filled with criticisms and the like. I'll be the first to admit that some of my posts actually drip with sarcasm, but this is my space in the cyberworld, kinda like my home, where I'm free to discuss about anything and everything under the sun (those of which that catch my attention and I feel is worthy of my time).

Some may say that the things that I write about are quite insulting. The thing here is, why get insulted by something which is not directed towards you? These are my thoughts and my opinions, this personal blog is very much like a diary, albeit open for anyone to read.

Okay, let me share some of the blogging tips that I've read from this SITE

On commenting - I love it when people share their thoughts, views and opinions on the things that I write. Yes, I join blog memes and I do appreciate the comments. Although, I personally love those comments which encourage discussions rather than a static comment that does not.

I strongly encourage those who visit my blog to leave their links/url by using the form that I have embedded on this blog and I promised that I would try to visit you as soon as I have the chance. However, I do notice and give priority to the bloggers who post sensible comments and most of the time I skip those whose comments are solely there for the purpose of promoting their blogs and driving traffic to their sites. I apologize if this may sound (read) rude, but this is the truth.

I have fallen into this pit of leaving one liner comments on other blogs, but most of the time, I read the posts and try to understand what the author is trying to say so that I can post a short but relevant comment on the post.

While on the subject of commenting, I have received two or maybe three hate comments on my blogs. It was funny at first, but it got irritating and annoying, especially when that person commented on something that I wrote without CLEARLY understanding the message of what I've written. I don't mind differences in opinion as long as there's a basis for it and because you have formed your own thoughts and views about something. What I don't appreciate are those comments which JUDGE me as a person, because for one, this is the cyberworld and there's so much to learn about me and who I am outside of this box that we call our monitors.

On following this blog or any of my blogs for that matter - Thank you very much for taking interest in reading my blogs, however, I ask that you do not expect me to follow you back. I deeply appreciate that people follow which ever blog of mine they wish to because the blog either aroused their interest or has inspired them. Since I started blogging again, I have made it a point to FOLLOW or LINK BACK to those blogs which inspire me, either through their skills in writing, photography, editing, illustration or just because they voice out their opinions about things freely.

And don't get me wrong, I admire those who support each other by using link backs, blog exchanges and the like. My personal stand is I follow those which inspire me and I love it that those who take time to read my blogs do so because I inspire them. I too am open to link backs and exchanges, BUT I do it out of respect and admiration.

I have read this line from this site and I would like to repost it here:

I would not trade a handful of readers I respect and like for 10,000 hits a day from people just following the herd.

On reposting  articles - I have done this personally, however I made sure to ask permission from the original author first, wait for their approval and of course I would link back to the specific post where I got the article from. And that's the only thing that I ask from those who may want to repost anything from this or any of my other blogs.

I have been thinking of whether it is appropriate for me to post these thoughts of mine since I started blogging and these sites inspired me to do so:

The Ward-O-Matic
CafeMama

Thank you for respecting my thoughts and opinions.

Brightest Blessings!

Halie

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Haunted

...are my dreams with images of you
...is my heart with longing for you
...are my thoughts with memories of you
...is my life because of you

...are my ears with the ring of you voice
...is my mind with images of your face
...are my eyes with falling tears
...is my soul with a sorrow difficult to bear

Cursed, that is what I am today
Cursed because with me you did not stay
Cursed with this heartache that went away never
Cursed to wonder of the what ifs forever



Brightest Blessings!

Halie

Friday, April 8, 2011

If You Met Me

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It's time for another five minute Friday entry. This meme is so challenging because one has to think of a sensible thing to write in a span of five minutes.

And here goes my entry for this week's theme - If you met me.

Go!

If you met me, you'd find out that I laugh easily. It doesn't take a lot of hard work to make me smile, giggle and even laugh out loud.

You'd also find out that there are a very few things that would make me frown and angry. I only frown at those who say something and then act the complete opposite. And that I get angry at those who don't say what they want to say in front of my face.

If you met me, you'd find someone who will listen to you. You'll also find someone who hates superficiality more than anything else in the world.

You may get tired of me talking though, because I tend to talk about myself. The reason for this, I hate talking about other people - gossiping in short. But I love talking about how my friend's day went and how they are.

If you met me, you would know that you found a friend who would stay true for as long as you want me beside you.

Stop.


Brightest Blessings!

Halie

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Jerry Olmedilla - The One Who Made Me Cry

Thankfully hubby has not made me cry out of sadness for the longest time that we have been together. But, there was one man, one person who really made those tears fall almost endlessly.

He's the one who got away. I fell in love with this person when I was 14 years old. We were together for two and a half years, happy but immature.
The day we broke up, I told him to never call me again, out of sheer anger; something that I deeply regret until today. It's not because I'm unhappy, but because I could have said goodbye to that person in a more civil and better way. I guess 16 was still really immature, childish and I have to admit, I was just plain mean.


Allow me to be cheesy once in a while.

One of the songs that I really really love. Something that pierces straight to the heart. When ever I hear this song, it still makes me cry - a river.

For you my Love, the one who got away.

Gawd, it's almost 17 years since we parted ways and you're still haunting me... I met you I was only 13y/o, turning 14 and you were 18, going 19. As soon as I turned 14, I said yes to you. I loved your perseverance and of course you. We stayed together for 2 and half years. Young as we were, we knew we were going somewhere. But I guess all good things never last, at a blink of an eye, a short conversation on the phone and you were gone.

I am today, happily married. And I love my husband, from his biggest assets down to his smallest faults. I could never imagine living all these 11 years without him beside me. But, the reality is "first love never dies." Cheesy? Yes, I know it freaking is, but that's the truth. Whoever said, "Time heals all wounds" should be shot and if he's dead, raise him up just so I could shoot his heart out. It is so not true. The wounds of you leaving have not closed nor has it been healed by time. It remains open, just like a nasty wound or gash that has been infected. The memory of you is just like picking the scabs to expose a very much fresh wound.

I wish we could see each other again, just to talk. Talk about everything that has happened. Talk not about what could have been, but the reasons behind our drifting apart.

All your letters may be gone, but every letter, every word and even your penmanship has been burnt to my memory.

I wish...

...I could hear your voice again.
...I could say that I love you for one last time
...I could finally say goodbye.

Me


Sunday, February 20, 2011

Forever Frozen

I promise to be your angel in the dark
Let me into your life, let me make my mark
Open up to me your heart
Into my realm take your place, your part

My promise is to take you away
In world of misery I will not let you stay
Give me a chance to know you more
I feel you are different from those before

Hold me, hug me, lock me in your arms
Tight is your embrace I feel safe from harm
Come fly with me to unknown land
Without any fear as side by side we stand

Your lips I feel it tremble and shake
As my lips on yours your soul I take
Lay down beside me as I give you peace
Immortal love and slumber to you my gift

Is this passion that I feel?
My hunger are you filling it for real?
Our bodies pressed together frozen in time
In ecstasy you answered forever you're mine
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