Sunday, October 31, 2010

I’ve Never Been Prouder of a Weight Gain

Weekly weigh-in: 216.1
Loss: +1.7
Total loss: -75.9
Emotion: On the rise... in more than one way.

First off… an apology.

There have been times when I’ve been less than understanding about folks’ failure to get the job done on this weight-loss journey.

In my mind, it was always just a matter of doing it or not doing it. I never had time to listen to excuses.

In case you haven’t checked in in a bit (and just where the hell do you think you’ve been?), my wife Anita suffered a detached retina on her only functional eyeball and had to undergo emergency surgery. After that, she’s been blind and bedridden for a couple of weeks, with a couple of doctor appointments (and some additional laser surgery) thrown into the mix.

Anyway, I discovered what single parents and people nursing an ill family member already know: life is tough! (I also learned that you can’t do a week’s worth of laundry in one load, even though all the clothes will “technically” fit into the machine).

Truthfully, I don’t know how some of you do it. By the time I got home from work, got everyone fed and got everything that needed done done, I barely had enough left in the tank to brush my teeth, much less contemplate a workout.

What’s worse, as my activity waned, my appetite seemed to swell. I felt the tug of old bad habits, and relearned what a miserable dining partner stress tends to be.

And to top it all off, my little activity monitor went missing. I underestimated how much logging my caloric burn kept me moving over the course of a day.

I peeked at the scale one morning and cringed when I saw that I was over 220. Clearly, things were going in the wrong direction…

Then one day, Anita called the office and told me that a friend was stopping by for lunch. She encouraged me to go get a lunchtime workout in.

I went in, even though my heart wasn’t much in it.

But a funny thing happens when the sweat starts to pour:  the headaches that may be stressing you out may still be around, but somehow managing them don’t seem so… unmanageable.

My activity monitor turned up in the dryer that night. It had survived who-knows-how-long in heavy-duty heat and spinning out of control, yet it was still okay, still working.

Same goes for me.



  1. Throw some self-doubt into the fray .....
    And it sounds pretty realistic, doesn't it?

  2. Jack, as much as it is a total shit about Anita, and I am sad that you have that on your plate, it is kind of helpful to read that you "get" how hard it is when you're faced with the juggle of kids, house and home etc.

    (Folk ask me how I manage to exercise around three little kids & the house and work etc. I ask them "How the hell would I cope if I *didn't* exercise?!")

    I hope things smooth out soon, Jack, for you all.

  3. One of your best posts, Jack! Glad to hear Anita is doing better. Yes, this is SO good to hear today.. I was a single parent for most of my children's lives and it is hard to learn to relax and take care of myself even though I have a willing partner with his gorgeous 8 yr old. Trying to fit life in with the stress and that overwhelming sense of BUSY..doesn't lead you to believe you have the TIME to do what you need to do for you! But I am discovering s.l.o.w.l.y what a difference the healthy food and the exercise, even 10 minutes, makes me my day!

  4. glad your gadget turned up and is still working.

    I struggle without having a job (stay @ home mom) so i couldn't imagine having a job on-top of everything else i have to do. I see these wonderwomen do it all the time and my hat goes off to them.

  5. I love when Men have to take the role of what we women do all the time - I think it helps put into perspective! Great work Jack, keeping up the household and even bigger kudos to you for getting up and moving on. You will be down again in no time, I know you are a fighter!

  6. Jack, I am sorry you and Anita are going through this tough time right now. When our sole focus is on weightloss, sometimes the road seems easy. When "life" jumps in and demands attention, it gets difficult to keep all those plates spinning. Finding time to practice good self-care feels extra selfish during those times. Great insight, as usual. I hope all is back to normal for you all soon.

  7. I'm so sorry to hear about Anita. I hope she's okay.

    Stress will get you every time. It plays havoc with people who have the best intentions, who know exactly what to do and not do, it knocks us flat.

    Sounds like you're back on track though and know the importance of exercise (so I won't preach to you about finding time for yourself).

    Life sucks at times but you'll get through this. Blessings dear Jack.

  8. I'm so sorry you both are going through such a tough time. I find it amazing how often, despite tough times, we learn some valuable life lessons and experience paradigm shifts if we are open to them.

    I hope your wife will be ok and will say a prayer for her recovery.

  9. Hey Jack..

    Man...I'm so sorry to hear what your going through but I've been there and sometimes you just have to do what you have to do to get back.

    virtual hugs!

  10. Glad you found your gadget! I am sorry that this has been such a difficult week!!! You are clearly a wonderful husband and parent and your family is lucky to have you!

    Hope Anita feels better soon!!
    Hugs and coping/healing energy to all!

  11. Sounds like things may be back on the path a little - life has a way of throwing curve balls.

    Now if we could just figure out how to simulate PMS for you...hahaha

  12. I hope Anita gets well soon! Life happens and stress is usually comforted with food in most cases. Hope things turn around soon for you and your family. :)

  13. I hope your wife is on the mend Jack. So true. Stress can pull us in all sorts of directions. For me, worrying about others (my children mainly - it used to be my old Mum)does sort of paralyse my mind to what I need to do for myself.

    My progress is still marred by family incidents. One step forward, two steps back, but I think as long as we don't give up on ourselves we are heading in the right direction. It's at times of stress that we are more in need of the feel-good endorphins that exercising produces. I tell myself this often..but still allow life to get in the way of my own weight-loss programme.

    Glad you are back on track :)

  14. I am glad you found your gadget and are getting back on track! Sorry it has been a rough few weeks and you are so stressed.

    We all have bad weeks and it is just a learning experience glad you have some better perspective on things and see that it is not always as easy as it seems.

  15. Yeah, it is tough. But so are you. "This too shall pass..."

  16. Hang in there Jack!!! Be kind to yourself while you're being kind to everyone else!

  17. It is amazing how much we learn when we are actually put in somebody else's shoes! Glad things are getting back to "normal" & hope the wife is doing better!

  18. Jack, best wishes to your wife. I don't even know how I'd survive in your shoes. Thanks for sharing.

  19. I'm so happy to hear that your wife is doing better and from me, who used to work full time and also be a single mum to three kids, congratulations!!

  20. You are probably getting more exercise out of keeping the household going than you think! At any rate, it's a tough job to have to hold everything together when a loved one is out of commission temporarily. You've done great!

  21. Glad to hear your hanging in there Jack. I hope Anita is showing improvement. I so know how it goes with so much to do and trying to fit in the time you need for you then also about the stress eating monster that seems to sneak in every chance he gets. Glad you found your directlife. I have misplaced mine but eventually found it too. Hope next week will be a better week for everyone.

  22. Stress sucks!! You'll be back on plan in no time.

  23. I hope your wife feels better soon! This was another great post, I often think this myself but we manage as best we can. Great job on getting in that noon workout too!

  24. It's so easy to get off-track when life gets in the way. Good for you for listening to your wife and getting that workout in!

  25. Poor Anita. I hope she has an easy going temperament or she'll be going crazy with having to stay in bed and letting the man do everything.

    It's hard on you both and I do hope you don't have to wait much longer for Anita to be able to move around again.

    Meantime hang in there as the saying goes. You can get back on track with healthier food and finding time to work out as often as you can.

  26. You know Ive been thinking about and praying for you.

    I can 100% empathize.

    well I guess 90? since it was my dad not my wife.

  27. Hope Anita heals quickly and completely Jack! Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  28. Awesome that your gadget showed up still working!

    Hope that Anita is doing better.

    Life has a tendency to severely test and hinder our progress, what's important is getting up off the ground dusting ourself off and moving forward. Weight gain be damned! It will be off in no time.

  29. Sometimes, I'm really hard on myself for not just doing the deal, but then I remember that I'm single with no kids. Some people may think that's the dream situation for weight loss - no one else to take care of. But being single means I have to take care of it all. No one else will do my laundry or scrub the kitchen floors and no one else to bring in some extra money for bills means a part time job.

    We all have certain crosses to bear on this journey. And we'll all find a way around them. One way or the other. If we're determined enough.

  30. Jack -

    Hugs to both you and Anita. One of the most admirable things about you is that you "keep on keeping on" no matter what. (Many bloggers would have taken a blog break with all the stress that you have going on lately. Somehow you manage to keep all the balls in the air & make it seem easy). In any event, I found an article that you might find interesting concerning the relationship between stress and weight gain in men:

  31. Hope your wife is doing better. Very interesting to see your perspective.



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