Wednesday, May 30, 2012


Well, I have some shocking news ... it turns out I'm not so perfect afterall.  Ha ha, I know you're laughing, especially if you know me in person ;-)  The last couple of days have been a real struggle for me food-wise.  I wanted to eat food so incredibly badly.  I know it was a combination of factors.  One is that food was in my house while my mom was visiting for the last 5 days.  Another is that I went waaaay too long between shakes the last two days because I have been so busy at work that I haven't been taking care of myself.  I also haven't got in as much regular exercise is I would like.  All of these things led to a perfect storm of me wanting to not only eat food, but plotting on how I would do it in my mind.  At any point up to now in doing the program, I could have very easily gone to the store or picked up food from some sort of location.  It's not as if food isn't readily available, because it definitely is. 

Thankfully, God sent an angel to talk to me today in the form of a co-worker.  He came into my office, closed my door and told me that he's noticed the weight loss and wanted to commend me for such an amazing job.  We ended up having a really fantastic conversation where I shared with him things on a level I didn't think I would.  What came out of my mouth is a truth that is hard to verbalize to most people - this is an emotionally difficult process.  No one can ever understand how incredibly hard it is not to eat food, yet live in a world where everyone around you except fellow people on Optifast do eat.  They eat the salads I would like to crunch in my mouth, as well as other foods that I indulged in far too often.  Up to this point, I never had that moment where I wanted to go out and overeat on something in all this time that I've been doing Optifast.  I've actually been amazed by that because that definitely was not me before I started the program.

Anyway, I am in a much, much better space today as I type this.  My tummy is full of Optifast product and I have made it safely through the fear I was facing of cheating.  I don't want to cheat and I don't want to be sneaky.  I want to keep doing what I'm doing and stay the course.  My health is so much more improved and I feel genuinely happier.  I want to stay in that zone.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Weekly weigh-in & my visiting mom

Our clinic is closed today because of the holiday, so I have had to weigh myself on a different scale.  It is one that is accurate, though, so I've lost 6.6 pounds this week, for a total loss of 115.6.  This is really incredible.  I am so grateful to God for supremely blessing me.  I will soon reach my lowest weight ever, but not stop there and keep going.  It's a very exciting time for me, but totally unprecedented as well.  I could never had imagined a day when I would have a normal body size.  That's sort of a weird thing for me.

On a separate note, my mother has been staying with me over the long weekend.  We definitely have grown a lot in our relationship.  I couldn't even stand a day with her, let alone several.  Just as I have changed over time, so has she.  There is no longer a hint of the abusive monster that I grew up with.  Obviously God was doing a work in her just as He has been doing with me.  When she came to my house on Saturday and saw me again, she said I looked incredible.  She then asked me what was the weight I started out at.  That question made my stomach drop.  It's very difficult for me to say the number out loud because I have tremendous shame around it.  I told her, "Mom, you don't want to know."  Her response to me is that it doesn't matter.  I looked at her, gulped, and said, "I was 417 pounds."  She had a tear appear in her eye and I could tell it pained her just as much as it did me.  She thought my highest weight was 350 pounds, but I know that's because I'm tall at 5'9".  My weight always distributed evenly, so most people never could guess what I actually weighed.  For me, there is just a secret around my weight and part of why I post it here on my blog.  I don't ever want to go back to that weight again and there's that old saying that we're as sick as our secrets.  So when I decided to do this blog, I also decided that I was going to be as transparent as possible.  I need to work through what got me to that spot in the first place and do things to ensure I don't go back.  There is tremendous pain in my heart that centers around how incredibly sick I was.  Each day, though, my health is being restored not only physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Feeling a tiny bit jealous

In my Optifast class this week, our counselor discussed the ending of our 20-week sessions coming up on June 18th.  We're actually ending one week early at 19 weeks, but that's when this particular group comes to a close and then we all move on to our next phase.  For some, it means continuing in classes because we're not ready to transition into maintenance (approximately 10-15 pounds from goal weight).  For me, that means I continue on in another class.  I have the option of either staying in my current class as we get new people or move on to another one with a different counselor.  I thought about the fact that I can get a new counselor and have a different experience since the class will repeat itself in terms of lessons.  But, really, I like my counselor.  He is super supportive and is really thrilled to learn how I'm doing this.  He's told me several times that I have broken records in terms of being the #1 woman in his 30 years of being an Optifast counselor with the fastest weight loss.  Okay, I must admit, sometimes that has given me a big head.  What do you want ... I'm only human!!  The truth is, though, that I don't credit any of that to my superior ability to lose weight.  Seriously, if I had some sort of amazing skill in that department, I wouldn't be doing Optifast in the first place, that's for sure.  I know that it is only by the grace of God that I'm not only losing the weight but doing it in a lot of peace.

Now, the part I've been feeling a little jealous of is the fact that the people who are transitioning into maintenance start to get incorporating real food into their plans.  The only real food I have had since I started the program is the tiny communion wafer I take each month that is no bigger than the size of my pinky's fingernail and the thimble of juice that accompanies it.  And, I have permission from the counselor to do so.  I have been absolutely religious about following the program to the letter.  I have not cheated once, nor been inclined to do so.  I don't know why that is, probably something about me hitting my bottom before walking through those clinic doors and willing to do whatever I'm told I need to do to be successful in this program.  With that said, I do miss the act of actually chewing food.  I sometimes would love a spinach salad, with lots of crunchy veggies.  When the counselor described that the people who are transitioning will get to replace one of their shakes with 3 ounces of a lean protein and then add in a green salad a few days after that, I was jealous.  I mean, look at that salad ... doesn't it look delish?  I'm not even thinking about having bad, high-fat, high-calorie foods.  I just want a freakin spinach salad!!

Okay, I feel better for just saying that.  This does not mean I plan on cheating or being sneaky in any way.  While I may miss chewing food besides my sugar-free gum, ice and communion bread that I take once a month, I will wait until it's my turn.  When I think about how successful this program has been for me so far, I know the day will come sooner than I thought when I originally started that I will transition back to food.  It's been about 3 1/2 months that I've been doing the program and I've lost 109 pounds.  How can I possibly complain about that?  I can't.  And when I finish working for the summer in a couple of weeks, I'll be able to spend more time exercising and just taking care of myself so I know the weight loss will continue.  I am actually excited about all the physical things I will get to do that I can't spend the time on now because of my schedule, like going on hikes or long walks. 

One of my friends and I are planning on being Thelma & Louise this summer and hitting the road looking for adventure (minus murder and driving off a cliff!).  We're going to drive up the coast from San Diego to the central California area and visit places like Hearst Castle, Santa Barbara and wherever our hearts take us.  I can't wait for that!  Then later on in the summer, my mom and I are going to visit my brother and sister-in-law in Vegas.  All the while, I have every intention of staying on plan.  I know people who are doing some sort of weight loss program, even people who are on Optifast, who feel like vacations are times when they can go off of it.  For me, and this is just for me, this is about a lifestyle change.  I can't pretend that just because I'm on vacation that I don't have a problem and can handle my food fine.  I'm learning new ways of behaving around food that I will be incorporating when I go back on it.  This program is not easy and I just don't want to repeat this again in the future if I can help it.  No, I have no intention of acting as if I know all the answers because I don't know the first one.  I just miss the salad, that's all ;-)

Monday, May 21, 2012

Weekly weigh-in & growth

I think I have finally crossed the threshold of not second-guessing my weight loss and attacking it as never being good enough.  Tonight I had my class and discovered that I lost 4 pounds this week, for a total of 109 pounds so far.  Normally, I would say the 4 pounds is just not good enough, that I should be working harder and exercising more.  But tonight I truly felt in my heart in a very real and tangible way that the number doesn't have near the importance that I have given it.  The reason is because I have lost a crazy amount of inches and I can see it not only in my clothes but in just my whole persona.  My face is changing, I can cross my legs without too much effort and I just generally fit differently (better).  I have given that dang scale too much power and it just has to stop.  Otherwise, I miss out in the pleasures life can give me in the here and now.  Tonight I was at the store getting some drinks and cat food and I caught a guy looking at me.  At first I was wondering what he was staring at almost to the point that I was going to look behind me.  Then I realized, doh!, he is checking you out, Kathy.  I don't want to be so focused on those numbers that I can't figure out how to live my life, know what I mean?  Tonight I am celebrating those 4 pounds, the 109 pounds and the fact that my clothes are too big on me.  Love it!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Progress so far

Today I have been reflecting on how I have been doing since I started Optifast and what things were like prior to making this change in my life.  It is not an exaggeration to say that it has completely changed everything.  At the beginning of this year, I really was living in a secret form of hell.  I had a smile on my face but really I felt like I was heading to death.  I'm not trying to be morbid, but just being honest with myself.  I weighed 417 pounds at my highest.  Even though I'm 5'9", I can't claim to say that my weight was evenly distributed so it really wasn't a problem.  Get real!  I always had shortness of breath and broke a sweat when others around me were not.  I could not get control of my blood sugar levels no matter how hard I tried or how much medication I was taking.  My type 2 diabetes was raging out of control.  Just to give you an idea of what kind of medication I had to take to attempt to control my blood sugar, I was taking 850mg Glucophage tablets three times a day, 5mg Glyburide tablets two times a day, injecting 35 units of insulin in the morning and 75 units of insulin at bedtime.  Yet, the best I could do was have a daily reading of around 250, sometimes 225.  My A1C number, which is the three month average of how well a person maintains their blood sugar control levels, was at an 11%.  That translates to an average daily blood sugar level of 269.  There were times I went into the normal range of 80-120, but it was because I purposely injected more insulin.  It wouldn't last, though.  And anytime I tried to adjust my diet, it wouldn't help.  So, after a while, I stopped trying.  I'd still take all the medications, but I wasn't putting effort into eating the right kinds of foods any longer because nothing was working and I was left highly frustrated.  Along with that was high blood pressure, high cholesterol and a constant feeling of fatigue/tiredness from sleep apnea.

Now, with all of that said, I want to report where I am today.  Since starting Optifast On February 7th, as most of you know who have been reading this blog routinely, I have lost 105 pounds.  My blood pressure is normal, my cholesterol is normal.  And what about control of my diabetes?  When I test my blood sugars, they range from about 88-125.  My last A1C test came out showing me at 7%, which is a daily average of 154.  I do take a little bit of insulin, 6 units in the morning and 6 units at night.  When I test my blood sugar every day, it is in the normal range, so I suspect that A1C number includes the period of time when I was coming down from the high numbers.  I'm sure it'll be lower the next time around, but even if it stays where it is at now, that's an amazing difference.  I have so much energy.  I don't have shortness of breath, I hardly ever sweat unless it's when I'm working out.  In fact, I'm normally cold.  I don't feel like I'm going to fall asleep behind the wheel of the car from the sleep apnea.  Prior to this, I was going to go on the C-PAP machine, but now I don't need to do that.  I tried on the outfit that I had on during my body assessment and the pants don't even stay up.  They are ridiculously gigantic on me.  And speaking of working out, I look forward to exercise now.  As I'm typing this, the sun is coming out and I am dying to get out there and get my grove on walking down the street with tunes in my ears. 

I was watching this mini-series on HBO called "Weight of the Nation".  If you have HBO, you've got to DVR it because it really is so insightful as to the severeity of the obesity epidemic we are facing.  It also has real people in it, describing the things they are going through or have gone through to lose weight.  One thing that was fascinating to me was this man that decided to go through the gastric bypass surgery.  With a glimmer in his eyes, he smiled as he said that in 5 months, he has lost 109 pounds.  I was so happy for him, then I realized, Oh my gosh, I've done that in 3 months.  Not only that, but I didn't need surgery for it to happen.  This is no disrespect to people who have had the surgery - just that it is happening without that.  This is not a race to the finish line, but it just amazes me every day how fast this is happening and that it actually is happening at all.  I know there are people who are reading this that compare their weight losses to mine, but you also have to remember that I had a significant amount of weight to lose.  Every person and every body is different. 

As I continue on in my journey, I have such a renewed spirit.  The smile you see on my face in my pictures either on here, on my Facebook page or in person is one I don't have to fake.  There is a glow about me now that is a genuine part of who I am.  I still have physical issues I'm dealing with and I do still have a lot of weight to lose, but it doesn't feel like some obscure dream I will never attain.  With God's grace, my life is changing.  Truly, the beauty of God's love for me brings tears to my eyes.  I feel like dropping to my knees and thanking Him at every opportunity.  I just am so grateful.  Now, if you'll excuse me, I have walking to do!

Friday, May 18, 2012


The last couple of days have been a little hard for me.  I finished a very tough semester at school, while working full-time and dealing with medical stuff.  I was up all night last night with no sleep working on a research paper.  But, ah, no school for three months ... I can handle it!!  In a few weeks, I'll be done working for the summer since I work at a high school.  I need the rest and the time to take good care of me.  I also need to work on getting more water in.  I have been so incredibly busy at work that the time betwen my shakes has been longer and longer and not drinking as much water does not bode well for me.  I know, I must make myself a priority.  It's just hard sometimes when I get so very busy at work.  But things are still going well on the program.  The ring on my finger started to fall off today.  How crazy is that that I'm even losing weight in my fingers??  I'll take it!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Weight loss and body image

For the week, I've lost 6.5 pounds and am down 105 pounds.  This week was a weird because I had a doctor's appointment on Thursday so I found out about some of my weight loss a little early.  I'm grateful for the continued weight loss, though, that feels good.

The changes that I am going through are not only exciting for me, but other people in my life.  I can't tell you how many times today people said to me, "Kathy, you look amazing!!"  Sometimes when I look in the mirror, all I can see is all the weight I have left to lose and not all the weight I've lost so far.  Then other times, I'll get shocked by the image that looks back at me.  There are bones that got lost under all the excess.  There's a freshness to my skin I've never had before.  It's just such an amazing time and, trust me, I don't take it for granted at all.  I'm grateful for every pound and every moment I'm living in right now.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Treating myself

I decided to reward myself for the weight loss so far.  I have to honor this process and not treat it like it's no big deal because it most definitely is a big deal.  At the same time, I also need to not focus on food-related rewards.  Many wonderful people have been giving me clothes, so I have a huge wardrobe of varying sizes, just waiting for my body to catch up.  I've gone down from a size 32 to a 24, even if my head doesn't recognize that fact yet.  I was stuck in a 32 for a very long time, seeming to only go up and not down.  So I didn't think I needed to buy any clothes. 

As many of you know, I'm a walker.  That's how I get my exercise in and I love listening to music as I hit the pavement.  It gets me really moving out there, almost jogging.  Who knows, in time I may do that but I'm not there yet.  I have a little MP3 player that I've had for several years and always wanted an iPOD.  So that's what I went out and bought myself today, an orange iPOD Shuffle just like you see here.  This thing is so tiny but I already love it.  In fact, I went exercising this morning before I bought it and now I want to go out again just so that I can strut down the street listening to music on it.  I wonder what fun thing I can do for myself after the next hundred pounds are gone ;-)

Friday, May 11, 2012

The biopsy

I went in yesterday and met with the endocrinologist regarding the cyst on my thyroid.  This was at a Kaiser office I had never been to before.  Before I started losing weight, I'd always worry about sitting in a chair with arms for fear I wouldn't fit.  The waiting room at this location had large seats and small ones.  Since there were so many people waiting for appointments besides me, the only seats open were the smaller ones.  Gulp, here I go!  Of course, I fit perfectly fine with room to spare.  I think my head needs to catch up with reality a little bit better, seriously.

Meeting with the endocrinologist was interesting.  First, he told me that the size of my cyst was not a grapefruit but a little lemon.  That was pretty shocking.  He showed me how to feel for it in my neck.  I have to admit that I probably would have never felt it before losing some weight, which was an eye-opening experience.  He gave me three options:

  1. Do nothing and come back in a year to check on the growth of the cyst.
  2. Wait six months and then re-test.
  3. Have a biopsy done to rule out cancer.
After having melanoma last year, which is a rather deadly form of cancer, I opted to have the biopsy done.  If I do have cancer, I don't want it growing in my body.  He did tell me that, if it is cancer, it spreads very slowly and is highly treatable with surgery.  So, I laid back while he took a machine out to tell him where he would need to stick the needle in.  He said, based on what he could see, it looks benign but only the pathology report from the biopsy will tell us for sure.  The funny part (if there is one!) is, after he was done numbing the area, he told me I couldn't swallow while he had the needle in my neck.  And I tell you what, after he said that each time, all I wanted to do was swallow!  I guess if someone tells you no, then you want to do it. 

So he went into my neck four times.  He is going to be out of town for two weeks, but I can call his office in a week and they will tell me over the phone the results.  Some good news, though, is that I got weighed in and I am officially down 103 pounds.  Hooray!  I'll post a picture under the picture section here on my blog (just look for the link at the top of the screen).  For those of you who know me on Facebook, you've already seen the picture.  The difference is pretty noticeable, though, especially if you compare it to my first picture at the body assessment.  I just am so grateful that I am on this journey and seeing tangible results.  Sometimes I feel like skipping ;-)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Clothes mocking you in the closet

If you're anything like me, you have a closet full of clothes of varying sizes.  Of course, there are the clothes that fit you now, the clothes that you "almost" fit into, those that you aspire to fit into one day and, perhaps, the occassional item that is a little too big that you keep around for those "just in case times".  As I have been losing weight, I have been working hard at being diligent about getting rid of clothes that I no longer need to hang onto.  I don't intend on gaining the weight back, so why leave clothes around that would lend to that?  I do have one outfit I have kept, which is the one that I did my body assessment in, the biggest size I've ever worn.  I just need to always remember where I came from.

So tonight, I was going through my closet because I've got a few items in there that I've always had stashed in the corner that were a dream to get into ... the things that I couldn't get halfway up my leg or barely over my head that had no hope of ever buttoning or zipping.  I am happy to report that tonight, everything in my closet either fits or is too big no me.  Some things, in fact, didn't even get any wearing time because they went from too small on me to way too big without even seeing the light of day.  This is just utterly amazing, that's all I can say.  I sometimes wonder how on God's green earth this is happening.  All I know is that it is!  Grateful doesn't even begin to describe how I'm feeling. 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A gift for me

I decided to  listen to my body and am staying home again today from work to get better.  That's so unlike me, but here's to taking better care of myself!  Speaking of that, here's an update as to what's been developing on the cancer front.  As I mentioned a while ago, there were some MRI's done on me in which they discovered a cyst on my thyroid.  The doctor told me I needed to see my family doctor right away because it might be cancerous.  Having had a different kind of cancer last year, that alarmed me, of course.  I contacted my primary care doctor and had an ultrasound done.  Her office then contacted me and told me the next step was to make an appointment with an endocrinologist to see what's going on with the cyst.  When I spoke with that office, they said the soonest available appointment was on June 15th.  I was willing to drive anywhere in San Diego County, but they said that was the best they could do.  In terms of the results of the ultrasound, I would need to contact my primary care doctor 5-7 days after having completed that test.  So, when it was time, I contacted her and she told me that, unfortunately, she cannot determine if it is cancer from the ultrasound alone.  That is why I am to see the endocrinologist because he will be doing a physical examination, perhaps even sticking a needle in to complete a biopsy to see what's going on in addition to the ultrasound. 

I then became frustrated because, although I have not been sitting here obsessing about it, having to wait five weeks to find out if I even have cancer, let alone have treatments if it is, was starting to tear at my insides.  I happened to mention it to my Optifast counselor last night and he advised me to call Member Services and fight.  Tell them that I want a sooner appointment because there's a suspicion of cancer.  So thought to myself, "Okay Kathy, you're a fighter when your back's to the wall.  Fight!"  I got on the phone to Member Services, got directed to internal medicine, and told the lovely woman on the phone my plight.  My voice broke up as I told her I might have cancer and, after having it last year, it was too much to bear to have to sit and wait to see a doctor.  I told her I would drive anywhere I had to at any time to see an endocrinologist.  She said, "Okay, let me see what I can do, honey."  She gasped when she looked up the appointments because they literally just received a cancellation for an appointment this Thursday morning at 10:30.  The next appointment would have been my original one that was already scheduled.

I thanked her profusely, hung up the phone and cried.  Were they tears of joy because I can see a doctor sooner?  Partly.  The real reason is I felt God's loving hand over me, yet again.  I ask for His help so much in my life - to give me peace, comfort, joy, grace and so much more.   It feels like a gift, made especially for me.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Weekly weigh-in

I stayed home from work today, feeling sick as a dog.  I did end up going to my Optifast class tonight, but that was a huge mistake because I was doubled over in pain the whole time and ended up leaving early.  Good news is, though, that I have lost another 7 pounds for a grand total of 98.5.  Yahoo!  Even though I'm not feeling well, that definitely got my attention.  I'm feeling so grateful, beyond words really. 

I am debating on whether I not I continue to take care of myself and stay home from work tomorrow or be like a crazy person and go in.  I'm just so busy at work, but I'm also feeling pretty miserable right now.  I can't sit up without lots of pain - what good am I going to be at work?  I'm thinking that if I'm not feeling better by the morning, I might see if I can get in to see the doctor.  Being doubled over in pain is never a good thing.  Going to climb back into bed now!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Feeling it deeply

On Saturday nights, I go to the contemporary service at my church.  It's more my speed than the classic services on Sunday mornings.  I like to be able to wear jeans and flip flops if I want to and there are a lot of younger people there.  I was looking foward to going to church tonight.  It's the first weekend of the month, so I know we were going to take communion.  I have permission from my Optifast clinic to take that tiny piece of a cracker and sip of grape juice that stand in the place of bread and wine.  But that's not why I was looking forward to communion.  I always feel close to God, but especially when participating in this activity.

As we began church tonight, there were some songs we sung that talked about how amazing God's love for us is and about how He saves.  By the time the communion items were being passed around, I was in a place of such incredible gratitude.  Since we wait to take the two items together as a church, I closed my eyes and prayed.  Some people do that, while others sing along to whatever the band is playing.  As I closed my eyes, I thought about how much God was blessing my life at that very moment.  I was wearing jeans that I literally could not get past my hips maybe a month ago.  I was wearing a belt that is only about 4-6 weeks old and it's so big on me now that I'm on the last hole.  I sat in that pew, feeling so humble.  A miracle has happened in my life.  At the beginning of February, three short months ago, I weighed 417 pounds.  And I felt awful about myself in every way possible.  I think I was feeling hopeless, yet I knew the numbing sensation food was giving me just wasn't working any more.  A multitude of awful events in my life helped me get there and me not really talking about them enough to other people didn't help matters.  I hit a bottom like I had never hit before.  I'm not saying I was suicidal or anything remotely close to that, not at all.  But I know I was feeling depressed and sad, yet putting on a stupid, fake smile so people wouldn't know what was going on.  Who was I kidding, though? 

So, as I held the communion items in my hands and I had my head bowed in prayer, I became absolutely overwhelmed with gratitude for the saving grace of God.  I could feel the tears filling my eyes as I had them closed.  I wondered if they would spill over when I eventually opened my eyes, but I let it go and just spent a few minutes telling God how much I love Him and thanking Him for saving my life.  I know He's not done yet, but just in that moment, He was in my heart in such a profound way.  I almost can't put it into words.  Finally, when I opened my eyes, the tears did spill over.  I was crying so much as I looked down at my legs, unable to lift my head all the way up into the regular position, that tears were dropping onto the upper leg area of my jeans like raindrops on dry pavement.  I found a tissue, but as I wiped my eyes, more tears would appear.  I sit near the front of a large church and I was aware that many people were watching me cry, but I really lost their presence.  Besides the pastor and God, everyone else was gone.  I let the tears continue to come until they were done coming. 

I felt so lifted, in a way I didn't think human beings could experience.  There is no battle of wills between me and the Optifast program.  I am not trying to sneak food, not even a little bit.  There is a peace about me when it comes to following the guidelines of the program, not questioning every little thing I need to do.  When I exercise, it is out of the joy of taking care of my body, not how many calories I can burn.  The pounds are absolutely melting off my body and I am not doing anything at all to sabotage that process.  I am simply letting go of the old me, guilty of making horrible choices around food.  More than the food and the whole weight loss process, I have found pure joy in God's love for me.  That's where the tears were coming from.  I made eye contact with the pastor and I could see he was feeling joy for me from where he was.  I have lost an amazing amount of weight in such a short period of time, but I have gained so much more.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Made for walking

The changes that have come over me in the last few months are pretty amazing.  Sometimes I will look in the mirror as I walk by one and hardly recognize myself.  That's not a bad thing.  I can see the pounds just dripping off my body, clothes that had no hope of fitting before now hang loose and people smile at me a lot more.  The latter part could be because I'm smiling at them more, hard to say.  Here's another weird one ... I started looking online tonight for local San Diego 5K events to participate in this year.  I know, I know ... weird.  This from a girl who just a few months ago would get winded after a few blocks, sadly.  Now, I can't wait to get out there and walk. 

Coronado Bridge, San Diego
Years ago, when I was losing serious weight before, I routinely particpated in 5K's.  I did things like walked over the Coronado Bridge here in San Diego, jogged in the rain during a Susan G. Komen breast cancer walk and just really was happy to do all of it.  Inside of me has always been a healthy, athletic girl who wants to participate in life more, who wants to take good care of her body.  I actually like the exercise and feel so good when I take care of myself. Actually, that's not true ... I know exactly what happened to me.  Food was a way of coping with things that might have been too difficult to talk about or even face.  Now I'm excited about the journey ahead of me. 

I've been looking at the walks coming up this year and I already see some I want to participate in.  There's one in particular that I didn't even know existed that I know in my heart I will be doing, which is a walk to find a cure for melanoma.  Given I am a melanoma cancer survivor from just last year, that speaks to my heart.  A lot of the 5K's are for worthy causes, but you bet I am going to be out there joining in the fight for something that is near and dear to me.  I'm pretty sure they have a diabetes one as well.  If you haven't figured it out already, I'm excited about throwing my hat back in the 5K ring!