About Me

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North Lawrence, New York, United States
I can be described as lover of life, an animal lover, and lover of education. I am constantly striving for knowledge and learning opportunities. I've been around horses my entire life. I enjoy working with horses and their human partners through natural horsemanship philosophies, natural balance bare foot hoof care, reiki, red-light therapy, essential oils, aromatherapy, crystal healing, chromotherapy, flower essences, and more. I am a Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki Master Teacher who offers treatments for people, horses, dogs, cats, and other creatures great and small. I also teach Reiki classes for those interested in learning how to treat themselves, their loved ones, and even their animals! Natural Horse Lover Farm is located in Northern New York between the St. Lawrence River and Adirondack Mountains. Heaven on Earth. naturalhorseloverfarm.com

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Breaking the Silence

Breaking the silence, thank you for being my friends and for being here. My life has been really crazy lately, as if you could not tell. And, trying to focus on myself (let alone my horsemanship) is almost impossible right now.

Okay folks...maybe you've heard some of this before, maybe not, but I feel compelled and the need to think about it again and write it down. Here goes...

I have been really struggling getting enough sleep and getting to the gym in the morning let alone eating totally on track. In 2010, I could not exercise enough, I was like a junky. I was going to the gym 5 days a week, Zumba 8 classes a week, videos at home a few times a week, walked the dog(s) every day, I was also doing interval run/walk training, farm chores, and horse activities (mounted and unmounted). I was eating almost totally clean foods and felt like I was on the top of the world, like a super star and like I would be at goal in the near future. People were proud of me, I was too, and the compliments rained in daily. I was never the fat kid, always the hot chick so, taking control back and trying to get my body back was working and felt wonderful. Oh, and my horses, I am certain, loved it too. :)

In April of 2011, I let some extreme stress at work, a back injury, and my husband's poor health and subsequent hospital stay (at two different places) become one big excuse to go off the proverbial deep-end. It was like something took over my brain and I could see it but not stop it. And, for the record, I control everything in my life, I am a leader in my profession yet, my health/weight as an adult has been a constant struggle since about my mid-twenties. In 2010 I finally had a handle on it, or so I thought. Anyhow, as the stress compounded, I found myself falling back into terrible, old habits (college eating patterns I guess) and I ate lots of junk, primarily Reese's products, and I mean it, I was eating this stuff like it was cocaine and I was an addict needing a fix. I was eating in secret, I was and am totally ashamed of my actions.

So, I went from losing 72 pounds to regaining 50+ back (quickly). I feel humiliated, stupid, and have yet to ever get back to the place I was in 2010. At the time, when I was back in Onderland, I said I'd never go back in the 200's but yet I let it happen, what the heck is wrong with me! I didn't gain everything back (a good thing) but feel almost paralyzed, like I am a total failure, and will never be able to lose it again, I feel like a fraud. I can give advice to others but cannot seem to take my own. I have had spurts of motivation and even some good days but, never like it was.

So, here I am, trying again. With my schedule, Weight Watchers meetings are out. WW Online was okay but, I decided to try something new. Being a librarian and technology junkie, I decided I would use the Body Media Fit (Link) as my tool to provide a mechanism to be accountable and to get feedback. I am trying my best to eat clean with the support of Arbonne products and some Designs for Health products. I know that I have to get back into my exercise routine, even if not like it was before but I am really struggling and I have no idea why. I love to workout, I love the endorphin rush afterwards, and I love how my body feels.

Now that the winter is breaking and there is more day light, I see horse time and all other outdoor activities in my near future. IT is going from a frozen tundra to a muddy mess but, that is okay. I took up snowshoeing and cross country skiing this year but far too late. So, next season for that!

Each day I work on myself a bit and although most days end in failure, I keep trying. Today, despite a day-long migraine and very busy work day, I am ending my day on a good note, yes, a positive note. I didn't exercise (because of my head that is pounding and ringing) but I did eat moderately, including a work lunch out. I am ending with a calorie deficit (a good thing) and my choices were good. Just writing this seems to be helping my brain synthesize things too, and I am drinking a nice cold bottle of water laced with Arbonne Fizz tabs...yum. I feel a little better...thank you for indulging me with this long post.

If you have any great ideas, insights, or have found a magic wizard who can zap my 18-year old body back, I would appreciate it. I won't even begin to write about the wrinkles I am starting to see....age 40 came for me in December 2011...and I told Rick this was the year for my mid-life crises...hehe.

Have a lovely evening and keep in touch. More to come.


Marion Princic said...

Hej Michelle, I know what you are talking about. Especially the part with the fat kid and hot chick ;). Anyway, I just want to share my experience with you. I have a hard time sticking to diets because I love food and I want food to taste good. So I tried LCHF. I´m sure it´s not the most healthiest diet in a long run but it sure helped me to loose a lot of weight rather quickly and without starving myself. Also when I reached my dreamgoal and I started to eat normal again I haven´t gained one pound.

yourpalsam said...

Hi Michelle, As I was visiting your blog I felt the need to give you some of my stragegies. I was never overweight however and some might argue that I could never relate to a person struggling with weight loss, but here goes: I am a very motivated person to start out with, but my motivation changes with the times. I used to be like you described, going to the gym everyday and eating healthy. That changed to scrapbooking, photograpy, healthy eating, and now Parelli. I am so obsessed with Parelli right now that everything else is on the back burner. I do, however, live on a routine that helps me keep my health up. I use my horses to do this. When I feed, I use two buckets. My pasture is a good hike so I lift my buckets as weights. Going to the pasture when they are full, I do bicep cures. On the way back, when they are empty, I lift then straight in front of me for 5 times, then out to the sides 5 times, all of the way back. This has done wonders for my arms. It is going on 3 years and my arms get a workout everyday. As far as eating, I eat the same thing every day for breakfast and lunch. It is healthy, so everyday, I feel good about that. Then by dinner time, I figure since I've eaten healthy for that day, I eat whatever I fix for my family and its okay. On Sunday nights it is ice cream night. I treat myself to a great, big bowl of it too! I'm always outside and really don't feel the need to snack inbetween meals, but when I do snack, I eat fruit. I love fruit. The secret to not eating junk, it not buying it in the first place. I buy only the junk food that my family eats and I don't like. If it isn't there, I can't eat it. Lastly, I have two overweight horses, so sometimes I go for trailwalks in the woods. We walk and trot and that gets my cardio up. I refuse to use a four wheeler to check on or visit the horses, so I alway walk, run, or skip to go and check on them. Basically, I use my daily life as my exercise! I use photos such as the one you posted to keep me going. I love the look of a refined body. I'm 45 and mine is showing the symptoms of age, but I do what I can. If someone would spend time with me, they would think I'm crazy. I probably am, but it works for me. Sorry this post is so long. Just thought I'd give you some of my weird ways.

Hope this helps,

Michele said...

I would simply say...you have not given up. And, my friend, that is everything.

Michelle AKA arabhorselover1 said...

Regina tried to post this but Captcha caught it. She emailed it and I wanted to share.

1. Read "Obese from the Heart" by Dr. Sara Stein. Everyone should read it, whether they have a "weight problem" (or society has a problem with their weight) or not.

2. In 2010 you were extreme. There's a high to that extremeness, and also a fear that if you back off at all, you'll TOTALLY FAIL OMG I'M LOATHSOME AND OUT OF CONTROL AAAAAAACCCKKK. In 2011, you couldn't keep up the extremeness -- I suspect that even without Rick's hospital stays and your back injury, you would not have been able to sustain 2010's extremeness, because unless you have sponsors or wealth that allows you to quit your job...it's just not possible to keep the kind of schedule you were keeping.

3. In 2012, we get to figure out how to allow weight to go up and down as a byproduct of our real lives. In real life, we overeat sometimes. We get together with two girlfriends and accidentally drink two bottles of wine sometimes. (At least, I do.) We get stuck at work or caught up in family crisis or get migraines ... and then we're "out of the habit" and we think we "never exercise or eat right" anymore.

None of that is true. What's true is we do the best we can at the time, and sometimes we yell at ourselves because we expect the best we can to be the absolute best we ever were or ever will be, at all times.

We would never be as unforgiving of our horses as we are of ourselves.

You are beautiful and sexy and brilliant and funny and a truly dedicated horsewoman. If I knew how to be "moderate" instead of "balanced because I'm extremely A and extremely Z," I'd tell you. LOL But what I have come/am coming to understand is that it's always a moving target.

Anyway. I don't really need to write anymore, 'cause you know the spiel by heart -- I'm sure you've written it for other women, just like I could've written your blog post. I recently gained back everything I'd lost from a spurt of exercising regularly and not overeating and thinking I "finally had a handle on it" ... but ... of course ... workalanche, and a small bout of mini-depression even though I have an awesome life and wonderful people who love me and horses and dog...etc etc. You know.

One other book that has actually helped, in addition to Sara's, is "Loving What Is" by Bryon Katie.


~ Regina

Michelle AKA arabhorselover1 said...

I want to thank all of you. I hear you, I embrace you, and most of all, I cherish you all being here with me! I will never give up, never. This morning, I feel better that I have in some time. Perhaps writing is my therapy. :)

Shannon said...

There it is again - that weird connection going on. Just yesterday I dropped by your blog and thought, "I wonder how Michelle is doing with her WW and getting back to her healthy lifestyle". I am so glad to hear you are still trying to sort it out - I can't tell you how much it helps to read what you go through. 'cause guess what?? I am in the same place!!!!!

Since January I have been trying to get back into a healthy routine. I am proud to say that, after years of considering it, I finally started taking a yoga class. I LOVE it!! It fits with what I have finally discovered I want for myself. I want to love me. Simple eh?? I want to love me and the body i live in as much as I love my huband, kids, horses, dogs etc. I figured out what I don't want - bootcamps - I don't want to engage in things that cause me pain and suffering. I can become fit and lean without doing damage to myself. And yoga echoes that thought - and that of Walter Zettl - "push to the limit, but not over it". And wouldn't you know, I feel amazing!! Now I have a loooongggg way to go with this .. but already I notice more flexibility, less stress and my horse and I get into harmony much quicker and for longer. But I do add some strength training and cardio into my week as well - yoga alone will not lose the weight.

I had been struggling to get to WW meetings with my kids arena schedule this winter. But that is coming to an end and I headed back to meetings this week. I really do believe the WW program will help with my healthy eating challenges. Whole foods and as you once told me - half my plate with veggies!! I also got the WW mobile on my new iphone - what an amazing app - allows me to track while I wait in line at the bank and everywhere! Awesome!! So just a "short" note to say I'm glad you updated and I am so proud of your stick-with-it-ness! That in itself is success!


Michelle AKA arabhorselover1 said...

Shannon---were we separated at birth??? Thank you so much for checking in, sharing, and being there for me.

I wanted to tell you a little about my day. I'll admit it was not perfection but, I have a few observations that I believe are worth sharing.

I ate out at lunch time. My meal was pretty good. However, later on, I indulged in a Reese's Nutrageous. I know....anyhow, I realized that it was not enjoyable and a little while afterwards, I had a headache. I think it was the sugar. This was really good feedback for me.

For dinner, we ordered out (pizza, wings, etc). I know....lol. Anyhow, I ate far less that ever before, was satisfied with a very reasonable portion, unlike in the past where I'd indulge, or over indulge rather.

My point of the post is that I am not feeling like a total failure and I am listening to my body and brain...eventually I will be able to be more on track but, I can walk away with the following:

1. Sugar gives me a headache and I feel much better without it. And, I am thinking that I am ready to give it up, again, but for the long haul. (I even had diet pop instead of regular and although I hate artificial sweeteners, I believe this was a success.)

2. I can eat indulgent, non-clean foods in moderation and not feel guilty or sick.

3. I have been tracking everything no matter what.

4. I have been getting in my good health guidelines on a daily basis (or close anyway).

5. I have friends (you all) who are here for me, support being the most important component in the world.

6. My scale has gone down over the last two days. :)

7. My mind is thinking about exercise again, one step closer to actually doing it.