Friday, November 6, 2015

Showing My Face & Philadelphia Highlights (Prisons! Signings!)

John and I just got back from our trip to Philadelphia. It was really fun - we basically just let Tripadvisor tell us what we should do and see, and went from there. After some research, we decided to stay in an Airbnb apartment instead of a hotel near the city center, and it was fantastic - saved at least $300, and that’s for more space and a kitchen! Will never stay in a hotel again if I can swing it.

Highlights included:

The Liberty Bell
    • They also had a really thought-provoking exhibit on slavery, and how its continued existence was in awful and highly hypocritical parallel with the slave-owning founding fathers (like George Washington)
Independence Hall
    • Birthplace of the US, where the Declaration of Independence was argued, drafted, and signed. (Tours are free!)
    • Also the site of National Treasure, a movie I unironically love
Eastern State Penitentiary
    • A prison that had running water before the White House, this place was fascinating and the exhibits were so well done. You get a set of headphones when you start, and it’s all a self-guided tour and you can just wander around and see the cells, tunnel from the 1945 escape attempt, death row, baseball diamond
    • We learned about how the prison changed over the hundreds of years in which it operated and how it was abandoned/condemned in the 1970s, and finally turned into a museum after two decades of arguments and politics
Jewish Museum
    • Lots of interesting information, but I was hoping for more artifacts and first person accounts (i.e. things you can’t get online or from a textbook)
Unlimited Bowling at Lucky Strike
  • Not special to Philly, but I wanted to memorialize that we played five games in one evening. Don’t ask for our scores, though.

We also walked about 25 miles over the time there - that was essentially our mode of transportation. By the end my feet hurt a lot (John was fine, weirdo) but it was overall a great trip, and all just a couple of hours away.

So, the burning questions - food and weight. As of Wednesday, I weigh 183.2, which is actually about half a pound down from a month ago. That’s good. On the trip I got a picture of what will make a good "before" or "during" of being at 183 pounds.

Thus, presenting for the first time on this blog, my face. Huge moment, I know. I figured that anyone reading this who knows me would figure it out anyway pretty quickly, so why not? And yes, I wasn't exaggerating about how pale I am.

With John’s encouragement, I started tracking again on MyFitnessPal during the trip and have now kept it up for the whole week! Baby steps, I know. I’ve mostly abandoned the whole “small meals” thing in favor of this. I didn’t seem to be working for me, or maybe I didn’t give it a fair chance, I’m not sure. I do know that it felt odder than I thought it would to eat basically a snack with my colleagues eating their lunches, and then have 2-3 snacks during the day.

My goal for the trip was just to stay at maintenance level - which, in part thanks to all our walking, I am happy to say I did.

I’m still really, really struggling with believing in myself. That I can still do this where I’ve failed so many times, regained so much weight, and use food as a comfort, a reward, and a punishment. That all the little bits will add up to weight loss. I’m trying. I know that probably everyone who’s had weight to lose has felt this way, even the people who ultimately succeed. I so badly want to be one of them. For now, I’m working really hard to at least track my food and stay at maintenance level, but I really want to up my game and get back into the 170s.

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