Up and downs

I haven't posted here for 2 weeks because that's how busy I have been. There has literally not been 5 spare minutes in my life.

I really should have made time to post, though, because last week was hard. I had stuck to my plan but when it came time to weigh myself I was 1 pound heavier than the week before! Holy shit! How did that happen? I was blown away and felt so upset. It seemed pointless to stick to the diet and I ate crap for the rest of the day.

But by the next morning I realized that if I continued to eat crap there was absolutely no chance the numbers on the scale would ever go down, so I went back to the plan. And luckily this week I was 2 pounds lighter.

The pace of the weight loss is making me a little depressed. I've now lost a grand total of 5 pounds in about 2 months. How can it be that slow? How do those people on that reality diet show lose 15 pounds in a week? OK, intellectually I know the answer: they are severly overweight and they are cutting their calories by a huge amount. It doesn't seem fair, though. I would be happy with a steady 1 pound a week weight loss. Anything but this one step forward, 2 steps back thing.



After a week away from the city and 2 weeks away from the scale, I lost not quite a pound. That feels painfully slow. I only managed to fit one run into our vacation (which is sort of odd because I usually try to use vaca as a time to work out a bunch but we had three days of traveling in a one week trip, which sort of made the tip short).
Our first full day in San Fran we had a lovely time walking around the city with friends and I allowed myself to indulge in a bunch of salt water taffy. At the end of the day I estimated the number of pieces (something crazy like 17!) and added the points up and realized that it wasn't a big deal. It was sort of shocking to find that out. And I ate more pieces of candy on Thanksgiving (while everyone else ate pie, which I don't like at all) and it was fine. But I felt fat without working out. And on our second to the last day we hit a mall with a candy store. When I saw it and said how much I wanted candy Bri told me that when she went to W Watchers they were told that they could take a weekend break and not gain weight. Either I was feeling cocky (after calmly eating taffy) or just feeling greedy and I decided to load up on sour balls, Swedish Fish, gum drops, and other sugary goodies. And then I just gave up on counting the points. I ate more candy the next day while being stuck in the airport and by that point I stopped worrying about it.
The idea of taking a "break" made me feel relieved but also incredulous. How can you basically eat a bunch of crap for two days and not gain weight? That seemed impossible. And then I started to feel angry that she told me that because if I hadn't known that maybe I wouldn't have splurged so much and would have lost more weight. Wouldn't it be better if I just stuck to the plan perfectly?
I get so torn between the perfectionism and having fun/ letting go. And that's true in all areas of life. I hate that our house is a complete disaster right now. I have moments where I just want to attack all the crap and dirt and unpack as many boxes as possible. But when I get home from work what I really want to do is play with the baby. And so I tell myself the house will get organized. And I try to convince myself that it's pointless to really get much organized now since in a few weeks our renovations will be over finally and then we can really get everything organized and unpacked. But then I still feel a little guilty and angry at myself for not being more productive. And I berate myself for eating all the candy and therefore getting a pathetic number on the scale.


Another week, another weight/wait.

I was actually strangely less scared of weighing myself this week (only put it off for a day) and was happy to have lost 2 pounds. To convince myself to weigh myself I thought how my pants were feeling looser, which then got me all excited and I half-expected to have lost 4 pounds or something. So when I saw he 2-pound loss I was a little sad and annoyed with myself. But then I tried to make myself happy with the smaller loss. And I realized that I actually had Swedish Fish this week because we went to I*kea and I got a bag there. I amazing had it last for the entire weekend, which might have been a first. Part of myself wanted to eat all of them on the ride home but I stopped myself. But then the next day I ate the rest of them and had a few minutes when I thought I had just screwed everything so I should just throw in the towel for the day. Then I added up the W W*atchers points and realized I was totally fine.

Next week we'll be away for the holidays and I don't want to weigh myself on a different scale. In fact I'm only weighing myself at the E*quinox near my office instead of any of the other locations I go to. That feels safer to me. So, it will be almost 2 weeks between weigh-ins. That feels sort of nice but also scary-- what if I gain weight during all that time? Thanksgiving foods don't hold any interest for me but the airport bulk candy and dried fruit stands sure do.


I weighed myself finally, totally fearful as I stepped on the scale at the gym. And I weigh the same as 2 weeks ago. Although it's obviously not as good as losing weight, I'm glad I didn't gain weight.
When I logged onto W W*atchers.com to enter my weight I was given the message of support and encouragement and some tips on how to possibly lose weight next week. And one of the tips was something that struck me as revolutionary-- "weigh yourself once a week, no matter how closely you stuck to the food plan." Maybe that seems obvious to most people but to me, someone totally afraid of failure, it was a moment of enlightenment.
When I was in one of the numerous eating disorder clinics I called home during high school we were weighed weekly with our backs to the numbers. For most of us the numbers on the scale held extreme power over us. To see it go up, like I needed to then, would have been too much to bear and would have made me feel like a complete failure. It still feels like that (but to a much less intense level) but maybe stepping on the scale every week even if I haven't worked out or have eaten a pound of Swedish Fish will help take away some of the trauma involved in the act.


Perfection or… candy

We're back from my business trip to Florida and I haven't been near the scale. Mostly because I didn't have a chance yesterday or today to go to the gym because I got into work late (because I overslept) and therefore can't really justify an hour lunch. But I'm also scared to step on the scale.

I am always scared to step on the scale but when I know I have been "good" I'm not nearly as scared. This week my diet was not perfect. I tried to keep track of W. W*atchers points in Florida but I didn't write them down like I should have. I never eat much at these kind of work events where we're servedrestaurant meals three times a day because the meals are never food I can (or will) eat-- I'm vegan, lactose intolerant and can't digest oil (plus I'm picky). But I only got to the gym two of the five days we were away and that made me mad at myself. When I get mad at myself for not being perfect I start up the "all or nothing thinking".

My "all or nothing" thought process goes something like this: "I suck because I should have gotten at least one more workout in. Now I'm not going to lose weight. I might as well eat a bunch of Swedish Fish since this week is basically ruined." So then I eat the Swedish Fish that were around for trick or treaters without adding them to W. W*atchers points. And once I eat them I feel like I've really ruined the week so why even bother eating healthy. After that I stop keeping track of how much I eat.

I think my biggest challenge is letting myself splurge sometimes without thinking I'm bad or that I've ruined the day. I need to stop looking for a perfect daily diet and exercise routine and give myself some room to skip the gym or to eat a little bag of Swedish Fish without beating myself up.

It seems obvious that it's better to just let myself have a small bag of Swedish Fish when I want it instead of occasionally just screwing myself and eating a big bag of candy. Instead, in the moment, it seems like the only right option is to avoid the candy completely. But then when I constantly avoid it I get pissed and really want it and then start the cycle all over again by eating way too much candy. Why is it so difficult to do something that is so logical? And
why am I always so hard on myself? And why do I seem to almost self-sabotage?

Anyone have any brilliant answers?


Week 1 status report: 3 pounds lost!
I managed to eat everything I was "allowed" to eat on W Watchers without eating too much or getting my freaked-out-not-wanting-to-eat thing. Yeah me.



This morning Bri told me she was annoyed that I was losing weight. She says no one can tell that I've gained weight.

She worries about me anytime I make a negative comment about my body
because she fears that I will spiral back into anorexia. And she gets
mad because she says I have a very distorted body image. She wasn't
with me during the worst of my anorexia but there have been times over
the past 10 years that I've reverted to my really sick behaviors and
gotten too thin. But that hasn't happened since I've become a guy.

It's difficult being a guy who used to be so full of hate toward his body
when it was a female. When I look at myself in the mirror and realize
that I have gotten rid of my female body, I am overjoyed. It's an
amazing feeling to finally feel good about my body. But yet I still
have worries that people look at me and think I look like a girl. I
worry about having a "bubble butt", not just because it makes finding
pants difficult and the lines of suits don't look quite right on me (in
my opinion), but because it makes me fear that I still look female.

And that's most of what makes me unhappy about gaining some weight. When I
was anorexic I was trying to achieve what I now realize was a male
body. I associate any presence of fat with female so when I gain a
couple pounds now I start thinking that it makes me look feminine. It
doesn't help that the first place I gain any weight is on the back of my ass! I would almost be happy to gain it in my gut, instead, like most men. (Of course if that happened I know I would still freak out about getting fat and would want to lose weight.)

I know that most of these worries aren't really grounded in "reality" but
they are still what drives me. I guess it's better then when I was a
woman and my only conscious thought about my body was hatred and a desire to make it disappear. Now I definitely don't want to disappear, I just want to make sure I look
like the best man I can.


Coveting is changing gears, because, well, I need help.
For those of you who know me in real life you may have noticed I've gained a little weight since Bri's third trimester. Between planning for the baby, starting the renovation and now getting very little sleep, my gym schedule went completely out
the window and my eating became crap. Of course I am not fat now, but my clothes are all tight and I've noticed some extra padding in places I don't want padding. I'm accustomed to being thin and that's how I want to stay.

I've been trying to do We*ght W*tchers online but for the first time in my life I haven't had the motivation to stick to something on my own. It's not like me at all and it kind of freaks me out. Usually when I make up my mind to do something, I just
do it. End of story. But this is different for some reason. Maybe it's
all the stress and exhaustion and chaos in my life right now.
I thought about going to a We*ght W*tchers meeting just to have some other people to whom I'd feel accountable. But I'm not a joiner. Bri looked at me in horror when I first suggested it. She said I would not like it. And I know she is right— I hate groups. I am the complete opposite of my wife.

So I am making you, readers, help me stay accountable and motivated. Unlike my usual product posts (which I'm sure will still be included sometimes) I am actually going to write about personal and emotional stuff (we'll see how that goes). And every Wednesday I'm going to post how much weight I've lost (or gained… gulp) since the last week. I'm aiming to lose 19 pounds, which will put me in the middle of the We*ght W*tchers suggested weight range. Wish me luck


Ceiling lights for our upstairs landing:

Logico by Artemide

Doko by Lithonia

LK30 by Illuminating Experiences

Edge 21 by Artemide

The renovations are going swimmingly and now we have to think ahead to all
things that will be needed to complete the garden and parlor floors. I'm stuck, though, on the right ceiling light for the landing upstairs.

At top is the Logico by Artemide. I think it looks like a floating cloud, which would cool since it will mostly be seen as one looks up the staircase toward it. It will really look as if its floating.

The Doko is about $200 cheaper but not nearly as cool looking,
although it's simple shape makes it pleasing.Or does it make it just
look like a school light from the 70s?

The LK30
is maybe cool-- or maybe not. I can't make up my mind. But, it's priced
midway between the 1st two. Maybe I would like it better if it was

And then there's the Edge by Artemide, which is super cool, and dare I say, fun. It makes me laugh.


Zinc-like planters:

There are currently two ugly mismatched planters on our front stoop (with no plants). As soon as we close they are going in the trash and being replaced with these from Gardener's Supply Company. I love zinc planters but they are so expensive it's insane. These seem like a great alternative. They are affordable because they're actually made out of long-lasting and lightweight polyethylene. They'll look great once we have
some new lights and a new house number.


Magis Stool_One

Someday I think we're going to have a pretty kitchen with a nice L-shaped counter. And then we'll have a few stools around it for snacking and drinking and chatting-- and feeding TK. Italian furniture company Magis makes these great aluminum stools, which match their Chair_One, which I have coveted ever since we saw it at the deYoung Musuem in San Fran last summer. Designed by German Konstantin Grcic, the intricate seat looks different based on the angle at which you view it. It's totally cool.
However, we saw a stool by Wud Furniture at Bklyn Designs last week, whith a coated cement seat. It would be amazing, too. But first we need to actually have the kitchen redone.


Omnia brushed stainless steel door handles:

When we moved into our old apartment one of the things I wanted to do was replace the round knobs with sleek handles. I never did it, but now I have an excuse: The other night we tried to close the dogs out of our bedroom but when Bri pulled the door knob it pulled off in her hand. So, we need new door hardware. And new doors.

I really love the handles from Valli & Valli (especially this one by Brisitish architect and designer John Pawson), but they are outrageously expensive. Omnia makes very similar ones for about a third of the price, so they will do. I assume Bri will like the handle above best, but I really prefer this one.

Either one is a thousand times better than what we currently have.


Halo Ceiling Fan by Modern Fan Co.:

I'd like this fan in nickle with white opal glass to replace our hideous living room fans (perhaps Bri will post a picture soon). It was be placed fairly close to the ceiling so we don't have too much of our living room height eaten up. But at $320 on sale I think I'll have to look for other options for our bedrooms.


Access Lighting Outdoor lights

Although the lights on the front of our home are one of the few parts of the home that seem to be less than 30 years old, there are also one of the easiest things for me to fixate on since they will be very easy to change.

I am enamored by both of these lights by Access
. The Myra (top) is the more expensive of the two at
$86 but both of them are 10% off at Lighting By
on the Bowery. And either one will look great with our new house number.


Yes, Coveting is back. It is now "Coveting, the renovation edition."

Keep posted to see all things related to our brownstone remodeling project.

To start off, I'm starting small.

Signo House Numbers

What's so great about this house number from Chiasso? Besides being stainless steel and in a Helvetica-like
font, the best part is its tiny price tag of $18. Definitely beats the
DWR Neutra House numbers , which although beautiful, Bri tells me they are overpriced at $75 each.


I'm streamlining my blogging/web efforts and merging Coveting with LexieLew.com. Now the LexieLew.com blog will routinely feature my home-product desires, as well as my new favorite pet items. Please visit me there!