Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Happy meal

In February 2010, I wrote my first entry in this blog:

Most people eat food.

Me? I eat my feelings.

It was my first time admitting my food addiction to anyone who wasn’t a licensed therapist. They were bitter, harsh words that hurt my heart a little to write. But they were the impetus that led to changing my life in ways I never thought possible.

Today I wanted to start my entry the same way.

Most people eat food.

Me? I eat my feelings.

Because that statement is still true. In fact, that statement may always be true.

I’ve had a lot of success through this journey toward a better me. I’ve had some moments of weakness, too. I’ve tried to learn from it all.

My latest lessons kind of smacked me in the face. For so long, I blamed my food addiction on my grief over my mother’s death. I blamed it on loneliness. Sadness. Pain.

What I’ve learned, though, is that eating my feelings isn’t limited to just the unhappy ones. Maybe it’s that I never really learned to process my feelings—good, bad or otherwise. I just turned to food. I’m struggling with that now.

Good things are happening (exclamation points added for emphasis):

I’m in a relationship with the sweetest guy who tells me I’m beautiful and appreciates me for who I am!

*Swoon* *Eat* *Kiss* *Eat* *Giggle* *Eat*

My best friend just got engaged!

*Squeal* *Eat* *Plan* *Eat* *Admire bling* *Eat*

I’m finally able to work out again after surgery!

*Cardio* *Eat* *Avoid gym* *Eat* *Sweat* *Eat*

See? Good things. And yet, I’ve been eating. Fast food. Krispy Kremes. Candy. Cheese. It reminds me I am indeed an emotional eater—and those emotions don’t have to be sad ones.

Today, though, I decided to go back to the beginning. Back to when I felt inspired and excited about my journey. I’m determined that 2012 will be the year I reach my ultimate goals. I weighed in today. I knew it would be rough. I’m up 2.4 pounds.

But not for long. This is me. Erika is Losing It 2.0.

Watch me.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012


I promised a few details about my belated Valentine's Day. And I try to always keep my promises. So here you go.

It was lovely.

My boyfriend is a busy, full-time single dad, so just getting to spend a day with him is a precious gift in itself. When I got to his house, we headed to Stone Mountain and walked to the top. I haven't been to Stone Mountain in years, and I've never walked up the mountain. Boy was I feeling my recent lack of exercise. If you've never walked up, I highly recommend it, especially on a lovely day like we had Friday. It does get steep at some parts, but it's not too bad. I did need to take one break, though. And I was a sweaty betty by the time I reached the top. Bless J for still liking me despite my sweaty out-of-shapeness.

Sweaty at the top of Stone Mountain

When we got home, he gave me my present--he cooked me a Mexican fiesta, complete with yummy grilled chicken and steak burritos, Mexican beer and home-made margaritas. Plus, he'd set it all up  in the most adorable way.

The ingredients of my yummy gift

 So yeah. Valentine's Day. Not too bad this year. :)

Friday, February 17, 2012


I did it. I made it through Cardio Fusion. And I'm alive to tell you all about it.

Cardio Fusion at Children's is usually the hardest class I do. I love pushing myself when I'm ready to give up, and the feeling of pride I get when I'm finished. I had not been to class in two months, and even though I missed it, I was nervous about going.

I tried to take it easy. My whole goal was just to finish class and not quit before it was over. Mission accomplished. I'm not at full power, but I'd say I was giving it a good 65 percent or so. It felt good.

Since my surgery, every new thing I do comes with a bit of trepidation. But when I do something once and realize I'm OK, I'm over the fear. Today's class was no exception. I feel like I'm on my way back to my routine. I'm trying at least.

Here's proof that I went. Sweaty red face and all.
I know I said I'd blog every day this week (I'm pushing it to get this one in, as it's technically Friday). But I'm off tomorrow to celebrate Valentine's Day a few days late, so I probably won't post after all. Hey, four out of five isn't bad, right?

Have a great weekend, y'all!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


I don't have much to report today.

Should I tell you that I ate my weight in cheese dip during lunch? OK, I'll leave that out.

I haven't worked out this week. I had a little complication from my surgery that prevented it, but I think I'll be back and ready to go to cardio fusion tomorrow. I did lose .2 pounds this week, so at least the scale is going in the right direction.

Tonight I have a Ronald McDonald House staff dinner at Atlanta Fish Market. I'll try to make good choices there. I'm in desperate need of grocery shopping, so that's scheduled for tomorrow.

Any new recipes you're loving?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012



Today was all about cupcakes. And it was worth it.

Two of our Marketing and Communications Department colleagues, Chris Thornton and Brant Rawls, celebrated Valentine's Day with a Children's version of Cupcake Wars . I've never seen a group of people gather in a conference room quite so eagerly.

Tuesday treats are my favorite. If there is a day during which I let myself splurge, it's Tuesday. I go to Weight Watchers, step on the scale and then treat myself a little later. Today, I was lucky enough to get a cupcake. And some M&Ms.

Valentine's Day has not always been about food for me. Since I can remember, my dad and I have exchanged gifts. One year I got legwarmers (Hi, 1983...best year ever!). Once I got a watch with heart cutouts on the band and my name printed on the face. Even when I didn't have a valentine, I had my dad. It's always reminded me not to be bitter on a day dedicated to couples.

This year, I do have a (non-dad) valentine. We're not celebrating officially until Friday, so tonight, I'm going to keep it low-key. Maybe have a glass of wine and some Smart Ones mini pizzas. Do I know how to party or what?

In the meantime, I hope you had a cupcake today. Or some chocolate. I at least hope you hugged someone you love.

I'm often reminded that our journeys to become better start with loving ourselves. It's something I've struggled with often. But it's something I know I need to keep striving to do.

Remember to give yourself some love today. Tell yourself how awesome you are. Pat yourself on the back (maybe even literally) for something you've accomplished. Look at yourself in the mirror and find your beauty.

And always remember you are worthy of being loved--especially by yourself.

Monday, February 13, 2012


It's late in a very busy day, but I am determined to fulfill my promise to blog every day this week.

So. My weekend. It was...OK. Sort of.

The Ronald is always a challenging place for me. One of my very first blog entries (by the way, we just passed our second blogiversary! Happy, happy!) was about my challenges with all the goodies at the Ronald McDonald House. When I'm there for the whole weekend, I tend to have moments of strength and weaknesses. This weekend was no exception.

  • Passed on the ziti drenched in vodka sauce for dinner Friday night. Ate my Lean Cuisine spaghetti instead.
  • Avoided pancakes and just ate eggs and fruit for breakfast Saturday morning.
  • Ate salad for lunch Saturday.
  • Chose my Smartones mini pizzas instead of the Papa John's brought for dinner Sunday night.
  • Homemade chocolate chip cookies. A few of them.
  • WAY too much Diet Coke.
  • Goldfish crackers (something about those cute little things--I cannot resist them).
  • Buttered popcorn for a snack Friday night.
So there it is. Not awful. Not fantastic.I have a busy week ahead of me--lots of plans. It will be tough for me to stay on track, but I'm going to give it my all.

See you tomorrow.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Updated promises

Hi. Remember me?

It's been a little while, so I can't blame you for forgetting. But I'm here with some updates.

Last week, my doctor cleared me to, as he said, "go be a gym rat." His words led to some pretty strong mixed emotions from me.

First of all, yay! I can get back to being myself! Going to the gym, back to cardio fusion, dancing it out in high-impact Zumba.

Then I had my second of all thought. Oh crap. What's my excuse now?

See, I've kind of enjoyed going home right after work. Having weeknights free to grab dinner with friends or go home and catch up on TV. But now I don't have an excuse. Officially.

I went to Zumba Monday night. I was terrified. Though I'm healing well, I'm still pretty sore and definitely not ready to get completely back into my everyday high-impact workouts. But I gave it a try. Stamina-wise, I did OK. Better than I thought, even. I did try to keep the bounciness to a minimum. I was again reminded, though, how good it feels to sweat.

So I'm going to ease back into my workouts. I know I need to listen to my body and see how I'm feeling, but I think it will be a big step in getting back my motivation. My food was OKish this week, but this weekend I'm heading to the Ronald for the first time since November. It's a challenge even when I'm feeling super strong. I'm worried this weekend, when I'm feeling vulnerable, it could be tough.

Next week, I'm going to do something I haven't done in a long time. I'm going to blog every day. Usually you can tell by my blogging frequency how well I'm doing. Next week, I plan to rock it. Stay tuned.

Have a great weekend, all!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Pants on fire

Last week I promised you the following:
  •  I will plan meals 
  •  I will go to the grocery store
  • I will not eat fast food
  • I will do some sort of activity at least three to five days

I did...drumroll...none of those things at all last week. Not a one. To be honest, I'm not sure my motivation has been this low since I started all this. And I'm not sure how to get it back.

I have been back to Weight Watchers, at least. Last week, I found out that since my surgery, I'd gained 2.2 pounds. Hardly a catastrophe, I suppose. This week I lost .2. It's a loss. I'll take it.

We had a good little therapy session in WW this week. A couple of my fellow meeting-goers asked me why I had not blogged in a while. I was honest. I'm struggling. Still. And it's hard for me to admit that.

Things are, for the most part, going well in my life. I'm happy. I'm hopeful. But I'm eating.What's wrong with me?

People sometimes call me an inspiration. It's a term I've never been totally comfortable with--I don't feel very inspiring. Especially not when I'm feeling like I am now. And sometimes when I'm feeling like I am now, because of your kind words, I feel like I'm letting you down by telling you the truth.

The truth is that I can't get enough fried chicken (Chick-Fil-A and Zaxby's have been my drugs of choice lately). I haven't worked out but once since I was cleared to sweat. I'm feeling lazy and yucky and sometimes I don't even care.

So there. Truth.

The rest of the truth is that I'm trying to crawl back. Slowly but surely. Last night I was going to stop at Chick-Fil-A (again), but made myself go to the grocery store. It was the first time I'd been real grocery shopping since the beginning of December. Seriously.

So while I often find my motivation pretty easily, this time I'm having to force it a bit. First the grocery store. Next, the treadmill. After that? More blogging. I know that writing this blog and sharing my feelings with you guys is the key to my getting back on track.

Until then, if you see me in the hallway, feel free to smack me--Cher style--and tell me to snap out of it. Reality bites, but it helps.