Blogs > Lighten Up with Margaret

55-year-old Margaret Pizzi of Mentor hopes to battle back from years of physical problems to a healthier life. She's cut out processed foods and diet soda, which is a first step.

Monday, May 7, 2012

need to get back on track

Well the last 5-6 weeks has been a challenge for me and I need to get back on track with my diet.  I have been increasing my exercise but watching my carbs has been an issue. I've also fallen back to my Diet Coke addiction. For my body it matters where my calories come from.  I don't lose much if my diet includes sugary or starchy carbs, processed foods and even artificial sweeteners even if I keep my calories are low.  I need to get back to "clean", healthy food.

On the exercise front I've been doing a lot more.  I bought a FitBit Ultra a couple months ago and it has definitely been worth the investment.  It's now attached to me most of the time!   I took a walk at my lunch break last week and walked up the steep Mayfield road hill in Little Italy so I could get more credit on the monitor because it has an altimeter. It also syncs with MyFitnessPal.  Lately several times I've gone over 10,000 steps. I've even done a couple short jogs (gasp). Between climbing steps, hills and walking up the parking garage ramps at work I've even gone over the 50 flights in one day!

Last weekend we stayed at a waterpark after my 7yo grandson's karate tournament (he placed 3rd in sparing and 4th in forms, go Devin!). I was physically able to climb up the 6-7 flights of stairs to go down the water slides with the kids. It was tiring but I could do it!  It was so nice to take an active part in their playing, not being restricted because I was so grossly out of shape. I did really struggle trying to climb up that cargo net though!

I bought a bike last week as a reward for getting under 200 pounds.  It's one of those old fashioned cruisers with the fenders and a color coordinated rack on the back.  I even bought a basket and "disco" colored LED spoke lights, LOL. It was so scary getting on a bike for the first time in probably 25years!  It seemed so high up!  We took an almost 6 mile hike/bike yesterday and that was a challenge.  The kids also wanted to take the bikes down the path to Chair Factory Falls off the bike path too. At the beginning of this contest I would have barely been able to get myself back up the footpath back up from the falls let alone pushing a bike back up.  I was shocked that I was able to do so with no extreme effort, the biggest challenge being the footwear that I was wearing rather than physical effort.

I'm still doing Zumba and have to find the time to get back to the water fitness classes since I'm now allowed to swim (couldn't because of eye surgery).  I also need to add some weight training.  It's a struggle to find time to get exercise in but it's worth the effort.

For anyone out there that thinks there's no way that you can get in shape, if I can do it so can you.  I do have a long way to go but I'm soooo much better.  I have back & neck problems and had/have metabolic syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia.  I have still pain on a daily basis because my back is so bad. Some days it hurts to do much at all but I've found that if I go more than a couple days without exercise overall it becomes much worse. My right leg used to be so weak sometimes I couldn't even lift it on it's own to put on a pair of pants. It used to be an effort just to get out of bed in the morning and I don't even need an alarm clock now.  It really feels good to be more functional and I feel so much better about myself. It's GREAT to be able to have fun with the kids.  I like being a participant in their activities rather than always being a spectator.

You just have to START MOVING. Baby steps are still going forward. Take it slow and each time it will get easier.


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