Well, this week was a slow week for me in terms of weight loss.  I only dropped three pounds, but on the flipside, at least I didn’t gain any.  Right?

I did manage to go hiking on Sunday and we had a really good time and afterwards, I treated myself to one of my favorite things in the world…a sugar-free vanilla latte with non-fat milk.

My goal with the hiking is to get up and down in a shorter amount of time.  I didn’t time myself Sunday but I think it took me like 75 minutes to get up and down and I want to pace myself to complete the trek in a shorter amount of time.  I will say that I felt the hike all week in my legs.

In terms of eating, I did really good.  I stuck to my salads, even when I ate out.  There are so many different kinds of salads to choose from that it wasn’t too hard, but I did enter the danger zone a couple of times. 

On Saturday, when my friend and I went to the mall to go shopping, which by the way, I am pleased to say, I bought two pair of jeans that I would not have been able to fit into a month ago, I entered the danger zone.  Midway through our visit to the mall, we both got hungry and eventually would up in the mall’s food court.  Talk about pressure!  We managed to find a place that served pizza but also made salads, really good ones at that.  I ended up eating a Chinese Chicken Salad and having a bottle of water.  When the salad was ready the cook put a perfectly beautiful French roll on the side of my plate that starred at me as much as I starred at it the entire time I was eating my meal.  In the end, I didn’t cave into the pressure and sent that roll back to the chef.

One thing that I have noticed is that I have to plan my meals ahead of time for the work week, and that means lunch and dinner.  If I don’t go to the store on Sunday before the week starts I get into trouble.  It’s hard to maintain my diet in my office because everyone’s always eating or bringing us food.  We like to eat out a lot at work.  However, there are not many healthy choices in Compton to choose from.  Unless I am going to Popeyes, KFC, El Pollo Loco, or McDonald’s, I had better pack my salad and fruit with me in the morning.  One day this week, I was too busy and I skipped lunch altogether, but I felt fine and went on to eat dinner later that evening.

Speaking of dinner.  I live alone and so I don’t do much cooking because it’s kind of hard to cook for one without being wasteful.  Besides, I hate to wash dishes, lol.  Anyway, I have been eating salads for dinner as well and having yogurt as a snack in case I get a craving.

Like with Compton, in my neighborhood, immediate options for healthy choices are almost non-existent.  Sure, there’s a Quizno’s and a Subway around the corner, but I am watching my bread intake so that axes them out of the equation.  Other than that, I have to drive at least 8 miles to get something decent.  Which is another issue all of its own in terms of the access to healthy food inner city communities have.  In order for me to shop at Trader Joes, I have venture completely out of my neighborhood, and the same goes with restaurants.  In my neighborhood, there are only three of them.  Denny’s, IHOP, and Sizzler.

One of my favorite healthy joints in Los Angeles is Simply Wholesome, a Black owned vegetarian restaurant.  I treat myself to a meal there once a week.  In fact, I’ve come to look forward to being able to go there and have something different to eat.

I’m coming to the realization that I am going to have to start lifting weights soon to tone my muscles or else it will just be flab, and who wants flab.  I don’t want my butt jiggling with every step I take or my underarms waving around with every move I make.  Eeeewww! 

So I am debating my choices for a gym.  Why a gym?  Because I realized several hundred dollars later that having workout equipment in my house in eye distance of my computer just doesn’t work.  As soon as I would start on the treadmill, I’d think of something I needed to do and get off and sit at my desk and that would be it.

Again, there aren’t many choices in terms of gyms around here.  You kind of have to drive out of your way to get to one.  Magic Johnson has a trendy little 24Hour Fitness about 20 minutes from me, but I am not sure I am ready for that pressure either.  The pressure of working out next to people who you’re like “why the hell are they here.”  Gyms have always made me feel self-conscious.  Always!  Another option I have is that there’s a small Black owned gym about 10 minutes from here that’s not so fancy but can get the job done for about a fraction of the price that a regular gym membership would cost.  And then there’s a Curve Center.  But, with both of those options the times I can workout are limited because they close early during the week and with my work schedule that makes it even harder.  Decisions, decisions, decisions.  I’ll figure it out.  It’s definitely going to be a challenge though because I hate to break a sweat.  When I went hiking, I was so happy that I didn’t sweat because for some reason I have an adverse reaction to sweat, even if it is my own, lol.

So I have a big decision to make this week.  Do I or don’t I go to Dinah Shore Weekend and hang out with my friends?  Just thinking about the pressure of having to be around so many women that are in shape and beautiful is enough to keep me at home in front of my television, in my “comfort zone.”  From the pool parties to parties at night, it’s an issue I am heavily struggling with because I never feel like I look good enough at these types of events.  Even when I was in my relationship and we would decide to go somewhere together (which wasn’t often), I’d have a major panic attack either while I was getting dressed or on the way there which usually resulted in us getting into an argument and not making it our final destination.  Yes, it’s that serious.  You’d think that if I can give a speech in front of hundreds and go on television that I could concur a simple party or night at the club, but I can’t.  It’s a different kind of pressure for me.  When I am speaking or interviewing, I know my shit!  I walk into the room confident of what I know and who I am.  When I get into social settings like clubs, that all flies out the window and I find myself hugging the walls and making various excuses to go to the restroom just to get away.  I can’t tell you the last time I went to a club just for the fun of it.

When I think about the feelings I have about the club today, I am reminded of my feelings as a teenager about P.E. class.  I hated P.E.  From having to take off my clothes in the locker room to having to having to deal with the humiliation of being picked last for teams.  There were many times that I ditched P.E. class…many, many times.  I didn’t really get into P.E. at school until I was almost out of school.  The only two P.E. type classes I ever excelled in were gymnastics and cheerleading. But like I said, by the time I took those up I was almost finished in high school.

I realize that this physical appearance thing is a psychological issue.  It’s all in perception and how we view ourselves.  My ex never really understood that because she looked good in all of her clothes and didn’t suffer from the same anxiety I had.  It’s not as simple as saying, let’s get up and go out for me.  I have to methodically go through my closets and try on three or four outfits and then talk myself into going if I can make it though just getting dressed!

In subsequent posts, I will address the issue of the non-supportive/non-understanding girlfriend when it comes to weight and self-image.  I haven’t gotten to the point where I am ready to fully address it yet, but I will.

So anyway, I have six days to make up on my mind on whether or not I am going to the largest lesbian event in the country.  Who knows, maybe I’ll have to work and get “saved by the bell,” if you know what I mean.  Or maybe I’ll stay at home.  Either way, as always, I remain a work in progress and my decision won’t affect my weight loss goals.

I hope everyone has a great weekend and thank you so much for your encouraging emails.  And for all my friends who have joined me on this weight loss adventure, it’s time to check in.  Tell me how you’re doing and what’s working and isn’t working for you.