Friday, February 15, 2013

Stress and weight- my 2 pound connection

Here's the 2 month outlook. And the details.

High weight: 187.4
Current Weight : 117.0
Goal Weight: 115.4

I finally have connected that certain stress seems to result a 2 pound gain during the work week. Both upward trends in Jan and Feb correlate to stress!

Hello, cortisol.

I've got a few relaxation apps and ways to relax.

What works

1. Taking my walk outdoors at lunch
2. Taking time to cook and pack my Paleo template foods.
3. Doing something fun, just for me- daily. Usually photography
4. Brewing some good, black coffee and savoring.
5. Getting good sleep.

What didn't work in the past

1. Telling myself "I'm too busy to walk today"
2. Buying lunch in the cafeteria, or buying frozen dinners because I was "too busy"
3. Not doing anything for myself.
4. Eating biscotti, cookies, candy to sooth myself
5. Staying up late trying to get "more done". I actually get less done this way!

If anyone has a favorite meditation source, relaxation source, or any other tips- feel free to discuss. You can believe that I'll be sleeping, batch cooking, and messing around with photos this weekend. I know the scale will go back down soon. 


  1. It is eye opening it is when you realize the impact of stress...emotional and physical. I know I tend to use things like swimming, bubble bath, or hot tub when sweating it up in the gym is not helping my stress level!

  2. Good idea on the bubble bath. I don't take baths, but sometimes my favorite hand lotion from Bath and Body works is very helpful.

  3. Great insights - to what is causing gain, and what does/doesn't work - helps break those mindless behaviors when you confront it that directly/realistically!

    This is not answering your question (sorry, lol) but it made me think of something similar that I do. I have identified I comfort if I can't stop myself, I at least make myself pay close attention to how I feel before/during/after. When I can see that it doesn't actually give the feeling I'm turning to it for (I end up feeling bloated, it doesn't taste that great, I get a headache, more tired later) it helps me next time stop and make a better choice because I WANT to, not because I feel PUNISHED. That is what I see you doing here with are not "punishing yourself" by not allowing yourself to eat sweets, buy cafeteria food, skip exercise - you are seeing you will feel BETTER if you make a different choice. Does that make sense? For some reason it really helps me to be extremely aware my choices are to make me happy, not to punish me and rob me of things other people get to have/do.

    Anyway...very inspiring to see how you collect and use data so effectively in maintenance!! No wonder you are so successful! :-)

    1. Thanks, Cheri. Stopping to think how I'll feel after I make my choice has been huge this time around. I'm usually able to tap into the "feeling good" choice rather than the food as a soother. I can remember what that feels like (not good) and stick with the feel good choice. Less punishment- more effective tools.

      Thanks for stopping by...

  4. I have a really stressful job and i recently started handsewing in the evenings to unwind. I'm not saying the finished result is spectacular, but it's very relaxing. Also i cut out texting in the evenings, i like communicating with my friends but i feel a lot more relaxed without it!

    1. Yes, I need to stay engaged in a relaxing activity- that uses my mind- E.Hill. I like working on my photography in the evening- on the computer- more of that!

  5. Karen, I can't remember if I have asked this before, but what kind of camera do you usually use when taking your lovely beach walk photos? Have you taken photography classes or are you self-taught? Really enjoy your pics.

  6. Hi Hils, I have a Cannon PowerShot SX130 and it is soooo beat up. Cracked on the side, scratch and dirt on the lens- whoa. But it still works well. I carry it in my purse, then out for my lunch time walk where I play bird and bug "papparzi". I use my iPhone 5 for some flower photos. And a Fuji XP that is water proof to about 16 feet below sea level for the tide pool shots.

    I buy my camera's at costco and try to make them last for 4-5 years, if possible. I have a super old Pentax K-1000 that is a regular film camera with a good zoom lens, but I don't use it much any more. My parents gave me that camera when I was about 12 years old (late 70's).

    My mom taught me most of what she knew- she is a good amateur and then sold some Sr. pictures and a few weddings. My grandpa (her father ) was a great photographer, too. And now I see my own Jr. Family member taking great shots, too. Glad to pass on the family hobby. I did take black and white photography in HS- developed my own negatives and prints. Fun to do that on the schools dime back in the day.

    Thanks for your kind comments about my photos. I am happy to share them (10,000 last year- Mac guys were rolling their eyes when I went to upgrade the computer ;) ). I like posting them at Project Noah too- but careful not to post my exact location or go to the same spot on a routine basis. Most of my stuff is close to home. It pays to always have my camera with me, so I don't miss those good shots.

  7. I TOTALLY think that stress and cortisol can wreak havoc on the waistline. Because of work and such, my stress levels are often really high. I know that's why I a)stress eat and b)rarely lose weight anymore. Obviously it all goes hand in hand. Working out is my stress reliever!

  8. I know this is just a reiteration of what I have already said: walks save my mental health but when I am stressed, I switch from audobooks to "my" music. I listen to my favorite songs on my iTunes and it helps, not only with my mood but with the pace of my walk. Normally I walk at a normal, comfortable pace but with the music on, I cannot help but pick up the pace. I usually problem solve when I walk so listening to my books is a waste of time, since I become distracted. With the music on, I can do both.
    I also enjoy seeing your photos. They are beautiful. I still have a Pentax ME, if you can believe it with all the specialty lenses. Not saying I have used it, in a long time, just that I still have it and cannot part with it. It was also a graduation gift from my parents.