Plugging away

Cathy ZielskeCZ Life47 Comments


I'm coming up on the three month mark of being back on the Ye Olde Weight Watchers Planne. Three whole months.

So far, it's really been going quite well. They say if you do something for 21 consecutive days it becomes a habit, right? I'd like to say this is all very habitual now and automatic, but the operative part of that statement is like to say.

At the last monthly check in, I was down to 164.5. As of last week, I was at 163. I think I was being a bit cocky last month in presuming, "Oh yeah, I'll be back in the 1-fitties by my 44th birthday (March 8, next Monday, for those keeping track.)"

Unless I lose a limb by Saturday (my weigh in day), I don't think that's a realistic goal.

But slow and steady wins the race, right?

I guess it's just a tad sobering to realize when you hit your 40s, it takes a bit more time. It's not like you can skip dinner and fit into those Size 4 jeans by morning. (Oh, how I miss being 9!)

One thing that has been a good thing is finding new recipes and challenging myself to not just do the same old tried-and-true low fat recipes. Some of you pointed me to Gina's Weight Watchers Recipes, and I've got to tell you how much I love her site and her recipes. I've made the lasagna rolls, the enchiladas and the potato leek soup. All of them, yummy and scored with the One Who Doesn't Need to Diet a.k.a. Dan Z. Later today, I'll be hitting the grocery store in preparation to make her Shepard's Pie tonight.

The other thing that's been helping is my new tea drinking obsession. I have finally settled on two teas that I adore. Irish Breakfast for the first part of the day, and Lemon Grass for the latter. It's not just the taste that I love, it's the ritual of making the tea itself. For a very ritualized girl—and one whose rituals went from smoking endless cigarettes to eating endless Reese's Peanut Butter cups—tea is a ritual that just feels much better for my body and spirit.


(Plus I bought their adorable electric kettle, which just makes the process that much more pleasant.)

Finally, I've been trying to make exercise a bit more fun and interesting by adding a goofy treadmill day where I basically just listen to Michael Jackson, sing, and make up dance moves, all while going between 3.5 and 4.0 mph. 

Don't get me wrong. There are still at least 4 days a week where I'm jogging and doing incline cycles and sweating and cursing the days I chose donuts over hugs. But every few days it's just me, my iPod shuffle, and really off-key versions of "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'"

So until next week when I report back with the 3-month layout and numbers, Ma Ma Se, Ma Ma Sa, Ma Ma Coo Sa.

p.s. If you want to shop for the first time at Adagio and would like a $5 off coupon, email me at They've given a me a code I can email directly to blog readers and friends. Love this company!

Cathy ZielskePlugging away

47 Comments on “Plugging away”

  1. #2

    CZ–I started within a week of you on WW and you couldn’t have put my thoughts down any better than you did. My sweet DH said “stick to it, hon! you’re doing great!”

    I just keep saying the same thing. Slow and steady, slow and steady. (But it still is so disheartening to get on the scale and see you’ve lost a huge .2 pounds!)

    We are doing good things for our bodies and our health, CZ!

  2. #3

    Your journey is truly inspiring, Cathy. As someone who is in need of a drastic family-meal-planning makeover, your posts about your adventures in fitness and healthy eating make me realize it’s doable. I just need to plan it out and make an effort. Thanks for the links… I think I’m going to find a recipe to try this weekend AND scrap a page about it.

  3. #4

    Almost 2 weeks ago, hubby and I decided to smarten up and eat better and walk more. Having worked for WW I know how it works and can see the error in my weighs! I’m drinking more water, eating more fruits and veggies, and walking at least 3 times a week and I feel better for it. I’m not melting away, but I also know I didn’t put the weight on over night, so it’s not going to magically come off because I ate carrots at dinner.

  4. #5

    Shame on you Cathy!! You have definitely fueled my already passionate obsession with tea. I actually convinced my DH to buy me an early Mother’s Day present and buy me Adagio’s Trinitea tea maker. It is sooo awesome!! Just put the tea in the brewing chamber and minutes later tea is ready. I always seemed to forget my tea was steeping so this is a dream come true for me. Their teas are awesome too. I’ve been especially enjoying the thai chai and the raspberry patch, yum! And they do indeed have fabulous customer service!!

  5. #7

    Gina’s site looks AMAZING! Congrats to you, slow and steady yes. I think that sometimes we dont lose weight but lose inches. That’s what I’m telling myself anyway!
    I had a complacent february after a very good January.
    I promise myself March is the month of the exercise.

  6. #11

    Congrats for the life-style changes. That’s what it’s about–there is no end to caring for yourself. I am hanging on by a thread and trying to get back to where my actions match what I KNOW TO BE TRUE.

  7. #13

    Congratulations on making your three month mark. You know, if you were a meeting go-er, they’d give you this adorable little charm for marking 16 weeks, and then when you hit your 10% goal you get a keychain to put it on. I’m all for the prizes. I have made this WW thing a two year habit, and I lost my first 50 pounds in about 8 months. It has taken me since then to lose the next 15. Do the math. 50 pounds in 8 months, 15 pounds in the next year and a quarter. And not for lack of trying. I hit 40 last year, and man have things changed. But it comes off. And even if it takes a while, you know you are doing amazing things for your body. You can’t NOT feel good because of it. I learned the hard way that going back to bad habits is not a good idea. I gave myself “a break” from WW over the holiday, and gained about 7 pounds in less than a month. It has taken me two months to get those suckers back off. Which is harder, resisting the urge to take a break, or kicking yourself when you’re kicking your butt on the treadmill just to get those pounds off of your butt? You have an awesome groove going, settle in and enjoy what you’re doing for yourself. Groove on, woman.

  8. #14
    K2 Scrapbook Studio

    WW is the way to go….I did it about 5 years ago and lost 45 lbs. in 5 months…never felt better…once in a while I still slip up and jump right back on it….it does become a habit it is like riding a bike…it is amazing that I know how many points a banana is or a bowl of soup with out even looking….


  9. #15
    Tammy M.

    Keep pluggin’ away Cathy…you can do it! And yes, slow and steady does win the race! BTW….my first Adagio tea order should be showing up today…I’m trying not to stalk my front door…every truck that drives by the house gets me excited…I don’t want to maul the poor UPS guy (or lately it’s been a gal) when they stop after all…I’m just so excited…you’d think I was getting scrapbooking supplies LOL!

  10. #16

    If it’s any consolation, think about where you would be if you lost a pound and a half every month for a year. It’s often the little habits that make the difference between gaining vs. losing. I’m like you – I want to lose that pound and a half in a week, not a month, but celebrate every victory!

    Also remember that since you are exercising, you are building muscles, which weigh more than fat. So you can be slimming & not losing much weight. It’s also harder the closer you get to your goal.

    Yay for the tea habit – I’m a tea drinker myself. My favorite is Hawaiian Vanilla’s Vineyard Blend. I drink it all day long. After my coffee, of course!

    Thanks for the link to Gina’s site. The food looks great. Now I just need to find time to cook……

  11. #18

    Slow and steady does win the race! Hooray for you – finding the routines that work best for you and that you consitently follow.

  12. #19

    Shoot. See, I’m always going with the hugs AND donuts option.

    Time for a True Tea Confession. I…wait for it…microwave my water and then plunk a tea bag in my cup. I’m guessing that is wrong. SHOOT!

  13. #20
    Melanie Harris

    Hmmm, I usually lurk “a lot”on your blog! But today I just have to comment! I’ve actually been in the dumps lately thinking I was all alone and not many of my friends have much in common with me. However, I feel recharged. Not that we are friends (in a traditional sense) but we seem to be on a similar path. I am on WW and trying to make it to the 150’s by my birthday – March 7… I’ve got 2 lbs to go in 4 days! I also have been trying to change my habit of Reese’s into a more healthy path. Thanks for helping me realize I’m not alone and for helping me laugh an a regular basis!

  14. #21

    Thanks for sharing, Deb. It IS a bit of a challenge, but i will tell you, i DO feel better. I can feel it every day. Just moving is doing wonders for my knees, stamina, etc.

  15. #22

    You make it look delicious and easy when you have fabulous photos of scrumptious produce on your posts… I’m excercising, but need to work on the food side of it now.

    And, BTW, my daughter turns 7 on March 8. Happy birthday to both of you!

  16. #24

    Plugging along with you (although not on WW itself) I’ve managed to lose @14 lbs. since 1/25 🙂 I’ve learned 2 things so far that work for ME – 1) I have to see the calories, not the points and 2) I only weigh monthly. Keep it up – we’ll both do it slow and steady!

  17. #25

    SLOW AND STEADY wins the race…fast and too good to be true is…it all comes back plus 10…I teach a zumba class and literally work out 4 days a week teaching it and my belly still looks pregnant, but I know that i am in better shape and I used to have my phone close in case I needed to call 911 to be taken out on a gurney, but now I can do it and pant pathetically, but am doing it…keep up the good work and the awesome attitude and don’t beat yourself up about it. We love you no matter what!!

  18. #26
    Kim in Cambridge, UK

    As a fellow piscean, (my birthday’s Saturday), I thought I’d show some unity!

    Keep on with the ultra self-disciplined working out!

    Well done Cathy!

  19. #27

    congratulations! keep going – a little at a time is the way to do it. i recently bought a Tracey Anderson DVD to try to do the whole ‘in front of the tv’ thing cos i’m too embarrassed to go to a gym! my coordination skills leave a lot to be desired…

  20. #28

    Don’t beat yourself up about not getting to 159 lbs before your birthday. You have lost over 10 lbs and that is worth celebration (with the Irish Breakfast tea!).

    We are all very proud of your weight loss.


  21. #29

    Good for you!! And thanks for the update. I am 39 and have been at my optimum weight until the last three years when I got prenant with my third child. I guess WW may be the way I need to go too. I thought I could do this on my own. No success so far despite running a half marathon nine months after #3 was born. Thanks for sharing the recipe site and the tea recommendation. I already drink tea daily and need to include more water drinking in my day. The daily difficult exercise that you have been doing is something to be really proud of. I am here cheering you on!! You’re doing great!!!

  22. #33

    Oh man, you are going to make it! And, you have the best birthday ever. My hubby’s is March 6th, and with mine on the 8th, we call the 7th our Tweener Day.

    And you also know how to spell “Reese’s” better than me! ha. I just noticed i spelled it wrong this morning. I hate doing that!

    GOOD LUCK! You’re not alone.

  23. #36
    Courtney Walsh

    I’ve discovered that if I DVR Biggest Loser and then watch it while I’m on the elliptical I do sooo much better with my calorie burn and desire not to fall on the floor and die. Highly recommend it.

    I also have been a WW girl before, but when my thyroid decided to freak out, I sort of quit. Just tested normal again so I’m thinking I need to go back. Do you do it online or go to a meeting?

  24. #37
    Yvonne P

    You are so right about the difference that being over 40 makes on your body and how it responds …or doesn’t respond to efforts to lose weight and to exercise. Although you are only about to be 44, I found an interesting article called Hot Flash Fitness in the Ottawa Citizen recently that made a lot of sense about how peri menopause (which they say usually starts around 40) and menopause require a different approach. It is short but thought provoking.

  25. #38
    Beth R.

    I so needed to hear about you today.
    This is exactly what I needed to read, I also joined the chub club sometime in the last 3 years or so. I decided on Jan 5th that I better just start, so I have been logging on tho My Fitness Pal every day, keeping my calories to 1200 and drinking 10-12 glasses of H2O each day. Cut my diet coke habit from 8 a day, dont even say it, I already know, but anyway I have cut back to 2 sometimes 3 a day.
    I had lost 9 pounds and was thrilled, last week I gained 1 back. Bummer.
    Cathy, I hope you realize that by being brave and posting this private part of your life you are making a difference in someones life. Today it is mine, becasue today I HAVE to start exercising again.
    I hate it, I dread it, I talk myself out of it every day. But at my age good diet and water aren’t enough.
    But today I am doing it, and in 6 weeks I go to flordia and I want to lay in the sun without embarrasement.
    P.S. Our measurements were EXACTLY the same when we started, our weighs were within 1.5 pounds. I am 5’10” but I am older so we are even 🙂
    Just weight until you turn 50 , it sucks!
    My goal is 150 ….sometime before I die.
    Gettin on the treadmill now,
    Thanks Cathy for kickin my butt today.

  26. #39
    Erin Summers

    You are helping to inspire me Cathy..thank you so much for sharing everything good and bad. Helps us all remember that it did not come on in a day it is going to take more than a day to come off.

  27. #40

    cathy…as always, you inspire me! i have completed three weeks of going to the gym (daily). when people ask me what got me going…i tell them “cathy”. you are like a wonderful cyber motivator (friend). thanks!

  28. #42
    Margaret C

    Thanks for those websites – I’m a UK WW newbie ( I’ve lost 7lbs in 2 weeks …but, to put in perspective, I need to lose half my body to get to my ideal weight) but I might try converting some of those. You rock Cathy, and I think you’re stylish as well as inspirationsl!!

  29. #44
    Jenny In Illlinois


    Thanks for sharing about Gina’s WW Recipes. I am brand new to WW. As in I went to my 1st meeting today. I am so pumped to start making some of these recipes.

    You rock! Good luck getting into those skinny jeans.

  30. #45

    You rock. Keep going on the WW. I did it after two kids and got down to 140 (didn’t even weigh this when I was married!). Heck, I don’t think I was that thin in high school! Although, I’d never be mistaken for Kim Kardashian, and I’m ok with that. But I have seen the pounds slowly come back. It’s not terrible yet, but I know I put a lot of hard work in to get where I was happy. I’ve got to get back to that. Your story is really inspiring a lot of people to give it a try, thank you from me and all of them, for posting all your hard work.
    PS, I LOVE tea. I’m facinated by these wonderful contraptions at Adiago teas. Could I get one of those coups?

  31. #46
    Sherri P

    They need to reward you, those tea people! After reading this post and checking out the kettle, I ordered it. I no longer make coffee at home and have been trouble getting the water temp right for green tea. I’d boil the kettle, and leave it sit, forget, go back to too-cold water, boil it, and start the vicious cycle again, still tealess! Ordered Wednesday, received Thursday, and I’m on my third round of tea. That kettle is awesome, and so fits my needs!! Thanks for sharing! I wish I had remembered to get the coupon from you, but I was just so excited, I didn’t remember til after the order was complete. Another nice thing about this kettle is that it seems much safer for my family to use. Win, win all around! Adagio teas rocks! Thanks Cathy!!

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