Barbie World + [blog]

Battle Cry.

Note: My real Hilton Head ravings will commence soon enough. Just allow me to set up the less exciting topic here, weight loss, with one of the much more exciting reasons behind it, an upcoming trip to the beach!!!

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My mom booked a condo last Friday, so it's officially official -- it will be Hilton Head version 16.0 this August for the Becker/Stevenson clan. 16 summers (or in that neighborhood, maybe more). It's like my home away from home. I could not be more excited.

The place itself is gorgeous, right on the beach, a view of the ocean, a nice big pool. But it's more than that.

It's the boogie boards and the bikes and the sand caked on sunburned bodies. It's slipping into the pool at 8 AM and staying there 'til 4 in the afternoon, books stacked on the side tables, leaving only around noon to munch on last night's leftovers and enjoy a glass of wine. It's our family trips to Barnes and Noble, Wal-Mart, and Piggly Wiggly for the essentials: reading materials, cheap flip-flops, donuts and coffee. It's seafood restaurants and a Pittsburghese pizza joint and a Greek place with flaming cheese. It's getting tan and rested and relaxed. Oh my gosh, it is heaven.

But wait. Something is askew in this heavenly picture. Or rather, something is a-squeeze.

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Winter has not been kind to my waistline -- let's just go ahead and blame the season instead of my own gluttonous self. And there's the rub (the tub). It is time to kick this ever-expanding booty into gear, yinz.

When I've posted about this in the past, I've always made it clear that I don't think I'm fat fat. It's always so frustrating to hear someone who isn't morbidly obese moan on and on about "being huge" and how they have to go on a crash diet. No, I'm not there yet. I'm a long way from skinny, but my BMI is still nice and healthy.

All that being said... I used to be skinny, and I miss it. Plain and simple. I was a little too skinny once or twice, and that's not what I'm aiming for now -- I'm not in high school anymore, and I don't want to look like I am. That's cute when you're 18 but not when you're 25, in my opinion. I want to look like a grownup -- I like having some semblance of curves! But my "skinny jeans" shouldn't give me stomachaches, because that is not cute in any universe.

And Kyle is right there with me. For a man with zero interest in ever wearing skinny jeans (and thank the good Lord for it, not my favorite man-style at all) -- his pants are feeling a smidge snug these days. All my good cooking, I suppose.

Here is where I am today (well, this photo is a few weeks old, but I promise it's still an accurate depiction).

I'm not looking for compliments or reassurance or anything. I feel okay about how I look (minus the hair, but that's another battle for another day) -- but I don't want to feel just okay. I don't want to look at photos of myself or in the mirror and think "meh." I want to feel great!

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So rather than continuing to buy clothes in bigger sizes for our own peace of mind and then laying on the couch discussing all the ways we could lose weight, yesterday we did something about it. We woke up, decided to go on a jog, laced up our shoes, and ran up to the park. We jogged the loop, huffing and puffing up the hill, sweating and cursing our lazy selves for falling so dreadfully out of shape. But we did it. And then we walked the loop afterward too, catching our breath and making plans.

And that's the plan this summer. Well, a small part of it, anyway.

Each day, barring horrendous storms, we are vowing to jog at least once around the park. Perhaps we'll get extra ambitious and run two or even three loops around, but not anytime soon. And if we can do it in the morning, so much the better.

When I exercise early in the day, I am much more conscious about what I consume later. If I burned 200 calories on my jog, should I really eat that Snickers (#144 in our office vending machine, thankyouverymuch) and have it all go to waste, and then some?

Which brings me to food. Oh food. Glorious food.

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I love to eat. Love, love, love it. I eat when I'm bored and when I'm happy, which explains why the past few years have been feast rather than famine. If I'm sad or anxious, my appetite is nonexistent. But unfortunately for my scale, and luckily for the rest of me, life has been way too good and I've been much too content as of late.
Perhaps picturing myself in a bikini in August will plunge me into the necessary depression. Or I could just focus on portion control and the foods I'm craving right now anyway, fruits and vegetables and moderate amounts of bread, wine and cheese (if anyone tries to take those away, rest assured that I will pull a Chris Farley on them).

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So with that in mind, after our jog yesterday, we took a little trip to our favorite place for a date, the grocery store.
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Our shopping list was a wonder unto mine eyes. It looked like it's supposed to look -- lots of vegetables, a good amount of fruit, some beans and meat, and a little bit of bread and cheese.
And this is how we're going to be eating from now until we hit Hilton Head's sandy shores on August 11, at which point our diet and exercise plan will fly right out the window.
It might not be so bad, this dieting thing. It shouldn't even be called dieting, it should be called "eating like an normal, healthy, functioning adult." That is what we're doing this summer.
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Our dinner last night was filets on the grill, brushed with olive oil and crusted with salt and pepper, and Ina Garten's Greek panzanella (OMG you have to try this!)
My breakfast this morning, which I never ever eat but will going forward, was greek yogurt and coffee.
I'm having leftover panzanella for lunch today.
And tonight's dinner will be Ina's lemon chicken and my favorite side dish on earth, black bean corn salad.
With only one glass of wine. Don't test me.
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I've rambled entirely too long about all this, so if you've made it this far, thank you. This isn't going to turn into a cooking or weight loss blog or anything, but it's something that's going on in my life and it's something I want to stay accountable for.
I'm shooting for 20 pounds in 11 weeks, which is ambitious but entirely doable. Honestly, I'd be happy with 10, but why not reach a little higher / notch that belt a little tighter?
I'm going to use the My Fitness Pal app on my phone, which everyone raves about. I'm going to control my portions. And I'm going to exercise at least a little bit every day.
And we'll see where that takes me.
Happy Monday!!!