Monday, July 11, 2011

5K Training Begins

Hellooooo blogosphere!! I must first apologize for my EXTREMELY long absence. Please forgive me! I must secondly say that I have absolutely not forgotten about you - I just really have been THAT busy! I've been thinking often about what I would like to write to you, and when it gets down to it, it gets pushed down the to-do list. So, I'm sorry. But I've missed you!!

It's been an interesting couple of months. I've been working seemingly ALL the time. I work at the restaurant 5 days a week, I teach 3 days of week, and I'm at the church 2 days a week. PLUS my gigs, which (thankfully) have been fairly numerous lately! I also went to Bonnaroo, and somehow manage to find time for the boyfriend. Or maybe he's just EXTREMELY nice and puts up with my crazy schedule. :)

I haven't fallen off the wagon, either. I HAVE been working out regularly. However, I haven't been eating all that great. Mostly because I haven't been logging my points very diligently. And I tend not to realize how much I eat - which is what got me into my situation! The plus side is I haven't gained any weight. I weighed in this past week at 190.0. Which is extremely frustrating - I would really like to be in the 180s by now!! But I'm really trying to be diligent this week. I've even gotten a friend to call me in the morning and make sure I go to the gym!

Speaking of the gym, if you read the title of this entry and you know much of anything about me, you must think I'm joking. Well I'm not! I've recently decided to do a 5K in the fall to push me to continue my weight loss and health goals. I've found some running plans online to help me push myself in my runs. I've been running fairly often, but I haven't been doing much different. So today, instead of alternating my running with walking, I alternated a slow jog with a faster run. I use the term 'fast' loosely because I can only run a 12-minute mile. But nonetheless, I'm helping to boost my endurance! I ran for 15 minutes straight today! Despite the fact that I used to HATE running with a passion, I've actually started to really enjoy it. About 2 weeks ago, my car died and I found out I had to replace the engine. I was so stressed out - and my initial instinct (after tears) was to go for a run! I really don't know what I have become - but I like it!!

I have lots more to say, but I must go to bed now! Take care and I hope to be back soon!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Weigh-in Day, May 19

A very dear friend recently read my last blog post and asked me how I was doing. I didn't realize that it had been so long since I'd written anything. Here's what's been going on.

Last Thursday, I weighed in at 191.2, which is what I've been hovering around for the last 2 weeks. Yes, I've lost a pound from 3 weeks ago, and yes I haven't been gaining weight, but I also haven't been losing. And I know exactly the reasons why.

Right about the time I ran out of sessions with my trainer, I had to get an extra job. Yes, added on to the ones I already have. And while I originally thought I was only going to be working 3 days a week there, I'm now working 5. Great monetarily, but not so much for my workout plan. I now work during the time I used to go to the gym. Which means if I want to work out, I have to wake up early and do it, something I have NEVER been good at. Though I wanted to get up and go to the gym in theory, I couldn't quite drag myself out of the bed to do it very much. I would go maybe once or twice a week for a half hour each day. And out of habit (and also partially being very busy), I was still eating like I was working out 5 days a week for an hour each day. Which has lead me to maintain my weight, instead of losing. And the less I worked out, the more crappy I felt about myself. I didn't start feeling that crappy physically, but emotionally I did. All those lovely workout-created endorphins were slipping away. The night I wrote my last blog I went out with some friends, who are fabulous and gorgeous and naturally thin, and I just couldn't stop focusing on the fact that I wasn't like them. It didn't matter how far I had come at the time. All that mattered was I felt inadequate. And so I drank. I drank far too much (don't worry, I didn't drive) and felt too crappy to get up and go to the gym the next day.

Isn't this what put me in this situation to begin with? Focusing on my weaknesses, drowning my sorrows (quite literally) and then eating to make myself feel better. And where did all that get me? 70 pounds overweight and miserable.

So last week I went to the gym 3 times. Got up early, sucked it up, and went. On Wednesday, I RAN A MILE. A WHOLE mile for the first time without stopping since 8th grade gym class. I swear I almost did a victory dance in the gym. And it wasn't a fluke, either! I did it yesterday too!! And I'm happy to report that I've been to the gym the last 2 days in a row. Today, I bought 10 more training sessions - lucky for me they were having a sale. I'm planning on working with my trainer once a week instead of twice, because I think it will help me become more accountable on my own. And keep me on track - my friend's getting married in September and I'm the maid of honor so I've got some work to do!!

This time last year, I hit a wall. I was at about the same weight, too. I just kind of got sick of my routine and went back to old habits. It didn't help that I lost my gym membership in April of last year, but I could have more actively sought out another gym. I didn't - I just kind of let it slip. This year will be different. This year is different already. I am stronger and fitter and more determined to not give up.

My last goal was to be able to run a mile before Bonnaroo. ACCOMPLISHED!!
New goal - be a size 12 by the wedding in September.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


I am tired of being the fat friend. Or feeling like that fat friend. Or of whatever action I personally do that makes my brain react like the fat friend.

All of that. TIRED OF IT. After all my hard work - shouldn't I be able to go out and feel amazing? Shouldn't I be able to go out and own my confidence? Because I'm pretty sure, of all people, I have lived the adage "Confidence is the most sexy aspect of a woman." How else could have I gotten anyone interested in me in college?? Haha.

You know what?! Right there. That's it. I still don't believe I'm worthy of affection. Inside, I'm still the overweight girl striving for attention. Who could have ever loved me the way I was? I was disgusted at myself - who wouldn't feel the same way? Sure, I put on a happy face and had too many shots and had a kind of false confidence. But what I had was the kind of confidence that can come from pure dissatisfaction with oneself.

All of that. TIRED OF IT.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Weigh-in Day, May 5

192.6. Okay - if you read my blog 2 weeks ago, you know I weighed 190.6. BUT then I went back to eating chips AND I went on vacation. I kind of weighed myself last Thursday, although it wasn't at my normal time (which does make a difference), and it said I was at 193.4 or something. So I've actually done MUCH better than I was anticipating. I kind of expected to be around 195 when I got back from Texas. So, not too shabby considering!!

I don't have time to write a lot, but I did want to say this. I wore one of my favorite dresses today, that actually didn't fit right when I bought it. Now, when I wear it, I feel fantastic. Not just because of my dress, but because of how I look in it. I feel strong and confident and gorgeous. Feeling that way, I went to get some dinner and ALMOST ordered chips that I knew I wasn't hungry enough for. And then I thought - why am I wanting to order these? As a reward to myself? Because that reward is only going to work toward counteracting the way I feel right now. And I love the way I feel right now WAY MORE than I love chips. Even chips with salsa. On Cinco de Mayo.

So my challenge to you today, on this gluttonous holiday, to remind yourself of the way you feel when you're fit and thin and healthy. What is worth sacrificing that for?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Milestones and Stumbling Blocks

I'm going to start with the stumbling blocks. I'm not really sure how much I weighed last week - I didn't get to weigh myself at the normal time because of my vacation this weekend. But, I think I actually gained a little weight. I'm not why - I worked out the normal amount, I thought I stuck to my diet. Now, I did go back to eating chips. I didn't think that would affect my weight so much! But maybe it was something else - I'm going to have to go back and review my points tracker.

Now, on top of that, I just got back from a 4 and a half day trip to my college town. The place where I gained 70 pounds. And as much as I LOVE seeing my friends that still live there - there's SO much temptation for me in that place. All my favorite fast food places, favorite restaurants with the horrible food I used to eat, and bars. Bars everywhere - that's the only thing to do there, it seems like. Not to mention, it was a festival weekend, and there was fair food EVERYWHERE.

It was too much for me. I gave in. Too much drinking, too much bad food, not enough exercising. And honestly? It wasn't so great. I woke up every day feeling awful. Stomach cramps, bloating, you name it. I actually CRAVED salad when I got home. One day back to my diet and I'm feeling so much better! Even though every choice I made was mine, I really regret them now. And now fixing the problem is only up to me. In a weird way, I'm kind of glad this happened. It really showed me how easy it is to backslide. And I realized yesterday, there's only a month a half to Bonnaroo! I have a lot of work to do!!

Today, I got right back on track. Cooked healthy dinner and bought LOTS of fruits and veggies at the grocery store tonight. Also, I made some big strides at the gym today. First of all, I ran for EIGHT MINUTES without stopping. That's 2/3 of a mile! I also ran a total of 2.5 miles in 40 minutes. I usually cut my runs off at 30 minutes, so the fact that I could keep going is very exciting. New goal - run a mile before Bonnaroo!

Friday, April 22, 2011

What A Day!

Today was my last session with my trainer, at least until I win the lottery or come into money some other way. I'm really going to miss working out with her! She has helped me SO MUCH. Not just losing weight, but learning HOW to weight train and WHY it's so important. I did things today that 3 months ago I would have thought impossible. She had me doing jumps from the ground onto the squishy side of a bosu ball which was sitting on a 6" tall pad. So jumping about a foot in the air and landing on a non-stable surface. And I did it A LOT! Also - we did step ups with an overhead press. And the step I was stepping onto? Was about a foot and a half high. Interestingly enough, I used to HATE step-ups on that bench because they were so hard. But today, the overhead presses were harder! My legs are so much stronger!

I can even provide proof. My first training session was January 19. Here were my measurements that day -
Weight 205.0 lbs
Body Fat % - 36.6%
Chest - 41.75 in.
Right Arm - 13.5 in.
Waist - 41 in.
Hips - 45.25 in.
Butt - 48 in.
Right Thigh - 28 in.
Right Calf - 17.5 in.

Here were my measurements today, April 22 -
Weight 192.8 lbs (If you were reading yesterday, this was on a different scale.)
Body Fat % - 33.7%
Chest - 39.75 in.
Right Arm - 13.25 in.
Waist - 39.25 in.
Hips - 42.5 in.
Butt - 45 in.
Right Thigh -26.25 in.
Right Calf - 17.5 in.

Here's what all that means. in 3 months, I have lost:
12.2 pounds
2.9% of body fat
2 inches from my chest
0.25 inch from my arms
1.75 inches from my waist
3 inches from my hips
3 inches from my butt
1.75 inches from my thighs

That's almost 12 INCHES all together! And even better - today I was able to put on jeans that I haven't worn since 2008. That's a better result than anything else. :)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Weigh-in Day, April 21

190.6! Oh my gosh!!! Down 3.6 pounds from last week!!!

You know what the craziest thing is? I wasn't even perfect! Saturday night I had tiramisu at a restaurant. Sunday I had steak and baked beans and had drinks with friends. I JUST CUT OUT CHIPS. I cut a large amount of salt out of my diet and replaced it with much healthier stuff. I can't believe the result!!

I really think it's changed the way I think about food. For example, right now I'm snacking on guacamole with cucumber slices instead of chips. I don't even have to cut out chips anymore - it's just what I wanted! Don't get me wrong, I still craved chips (or salty things, really), but not nearly as often as I thought I would. And chips used to kind of be my comfort/reward food. And guess what - I didn't die without them! I was able to control myself and life didn't end. I know that sounds ridiculous - it's just food. But when you become attached to something and you see it as a comfort, sometimes it feels really hard to do without it. Food becomes your security blanket.

But coming from someone who LOVES food and LOVES bad food, life will go on when you change your diet. Yes, things will change, but only in the best ways. You will not be starving, you will not feel deprived, you will thank yourself. All I remember about this week is that I've felt fuller than normal and I've had a lot more energy. Not the fact that I cut out a food that I love.

My challenge paid off! What will you challenge yourself with?

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

One Week Without Chips, Day 6

So, I had intended to write a little bit in here every day of this Challenge Week, but obviously that's not what happened. Life got in the way a little!

Things have still been going very well. Still no chips! Lots of popcorn and a few servings of reduced fat triscuits, but no other slip ups! And actually, I used to eat an entire bag of 96% fat free light butter popcorn in one sitting, and now I've found that I really only need about a half of a bag to feel full. I also used to eat 2 servings of triscuits at once but I've been very diligent about making sure that doesn't happen. In general, I've been feeling more full and I've had more points left over at the end of the day. Which, I will say, has lead me to eat some of the girl scout cookies I keep in my freezer, but not without logging their points values online!

Yesterday, I had a big workout (circuit training class - it's HARD! and then I ran for 15 minutes) and had to go to work afterward. Then I had a chicken salad with triscuits and low-fat cheese spread for lunch. Through most of work, I felt tired and lacking energy. Once I got home and had some whole wheat pasta for dinner, though, I was feeling much better. Usually on Mondays I'm full of energy - Tuesdays are the days that I'm feeling tired. Upon analyzing all this, I think it was because I didn't have many carbs for lunch. Although I had protein (a necessity after working out), my body didn't have quite enough energy to get through the day. So in contrast today, after my run, I had pasta for lunch instead of dinner. And I'm feeling perfectly normal.

I'm sure you've all heard that to lose weight, you should eat your big meals in the morning and afternoon and smaller meals at night. I don't find this to be really true. Now, if you don't eat anything all day and then gorge on dinner, you'll probably have a hard time losing. On the other hand, I often snack later in the evening and it hasn't inhibited my weight loss. I believe the bigger issue is WHAT you eat for dinner and lunch. Your body needs carbs to get through the day - they are your major source of energy. So having only a salad for lunch often will make you feel hungry or sluggish later on in the day. I used to pair my salads with chips for lunch - now I'm thinking I will eat them at night without chips. Better choices for lunch are sandwiches or pasta - something with energy to keep you from passing out on your desk/cubicle wall/piano at around 3. HOWEVER - if you overeat pasta, you will still feel sluggish. If you get sandwiches with mayonnaise, cheese, fatty meats and white bread, you will probably still feel sluggish. Measure out your portions! They are always important! Your sandwiches can still be delicious, I promise. Try wheat bread, hold the mayo (mustard is a better low calorie option for taste) and go for lower fat meats - turkey, chicken breast, even roast beef in moderation. Cheese is a good source of protein - but most of them are really high in fat, also. If you make your sandwiches at home, buy fat free cheese slices of whatever kind of cheese you prefer. If you're at a restaurant, hold the cheese. Remember - restaurants usually hide extra calories in things like butter for the bread, or oil to cook the meat in. And most restaurants coat their food in salt for flavor - be very mindful of what you're eating! Don't be afraid to ask questions!

Enough preaching for today. I'm REALLY looking forward to my weigh-in on Thursday. I think it's going to be a great one! How often do you hear people say that? Stay tuned to see how my challenge has paid off!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

One Week Without Chips, Day 3

Hey friends!

So far the challenge has been a success! Not to say that it hasn't been a little challenging. But no chips yet!

On Thursday night, I had some reduced fat Triscuits. Now, Triscuits are made with whole wheat, so they're a lot more filling than chips anyway. A good option if you want to cut out empty calories!

I will mention that yesterday I hardly felt hungry at all. I stayed fuller longer on the same amount of calories! Which proves my point that chips don't keep you as full as you might like to believe. Instead, I've been substituting fruit or salad. Fuel your body needs!

That's all for now - keep tuning in!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Weigh-in Day, April 14/One Week Without Chips - Day 1

194.2. Only down 0.2 pounds from last week. BUT I didn't GAIN weight either. And my birthday celebrations continued into this week more than I anticipated. I went out to dinner a lot, and it's always hard to judge exactly what you're eating at a restaurant and how much of it I'm eating. I got into the gym a lot more this past week than I did the week before. So - better than last week!

Also, my trainer and I did measurements yesterday, and I lost another 1.25 inches from about 3 weeks ago. 0.75 inches from my butt, 0.25 in. from hips and 0.25 in. from my arms. On the downside, my last session with my trainer is next Wednesday. I LOVE working with her and she's really helped me, but I just can't afford any more sessions. So - I'm going to do my best to take what I've learned and push myself to keep losing and toning. On the upside - she said we could meet every few weeks or so to take measurements so I can still keep tabs on that. As I said in an earlier post this week, I'm going to rely a bit on classes that help me weight train. I know I can push myself when I do cardio - but weight training is hard, in case you didn't get the memo!!

As far as my One Week Without Chips goes - no problem so far. Today for lunch I had wheat pasta with salad. This morning, I had strawberries and tried a new cereal - Kashi GoLean Crisp, Berry Crunch flavor. It was good! It definitely kept me fuller longer than normal cereal - give it a shot! So I have some healthy carbs in me and the cereal was a great source of protein. Look at me evaluating my food. Weird.

One last thing - Goals for this week:
Thursday, April 7 - 4 fruits and veggies
Friday, April 8 - worked out with trainer, 3 fruits and veggies
Saturday, April 9 - worked out (running and yoga class), 4 fruits and veggies
Sunday, April 10 - 3 fruits and veggies
Monday, April 11 - worked out (circuit training class), 3 fruits and veggies, cooked chicken and pasta
Tuesday, April 12 - worked out (running), 4 fruits and veggies
Wednesday, April 13 - worked out with trainer, 4 fruits and veggies

I could stand to do better with my fruits and vegetable intake, but good with working out! I'm hoping to try a new recipe this week. More to come soon!! Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Something Different

Hey guys!

I've been breaking my own rule of only weighing myself once a week lately, and I'm pretty sure I'm going to lose a little weight. But not enough to get me down to where I was before the birthday celebrations. Now, I have 2 weeks before I leave for Texas (get excited, Texas readers!) and I wanted to be under 190 before then. How can I do that? Well, I'm doing something drastic.

ONE WEEK WITHOUT CHIPS. (Okay, so maybe that was a little dramatic. But if you know me, you know that I wish I could live on chips and salsa.) Seriously, though. I will not eat chips for an entire week. Now, you notice that I am not cutting out carbs - just the empty ones. In fact, here is a list of the carbs that I CAN eat:
whole wheat bread (or any kind - bagels, tortillas, etc.)
whole wheat pasta
whole grain cereal
brown rice
96% fat free light butter popcorn

I allowed myself one splurge - in popcorn. I usually eat it as my snack at night, and it's very low in calories. That's my one treat!! Anyway - your body needs carbs for energy - what it doesn't need is empty processed carbs that have no nutrients in them. White bread and chips are the biggest culprits for Americans. I already eat wheat bread, so now I want to try to cut out chips.

I'm not saying that chips can't be part of a healthy diet - but I know that I rely on them too much. Plus, I'm not good at controlling my portions of chips. I will munch on them without thinking, and end up eating about twice the portion size. So, my hope is that cutting them out will force me to find new, healthier things to eat. And help me be better in control of my portion size!!


Saturday, April 9, 2011

Weigh-in Day, April 7

194.4. I gained 2 pounds over my Birthday week. So, that sucks. But I kind of expected it. The same thing happened when I went on vacation - I had gained weight when I got back, and then I lost it the next week. So, back to the routine!!

This morning I took a yoga/pilates class which was AWESOME! It has been so long since I've taken one. If you were reading these last year, I was taking a class called "Body Flow" that blends yoga, pilates and tai chi. But when I lost my membership at my old gym, I couldn't go anymore. And I've been wanting to try this class (called Rush Centergy) since I joined The Rush, but they don't offer it at the most convenient times for me. Often it's at 8:30am!!! Anyway, usually they don't offer them on Saturdays, but today they were releasing a new class so they had a special thing going on. And I tell you what - I have DEFINITELY gotten stronger, more flexible, and more capable. I could do stuff today that I couldn't do a year ago! That was very cool to see. I mean, it still wasn't easy, but I COULD do it. And I didn't feel out of place in the class, which was a big plus.

I have a friend who is nervous about going to classes by herself. I imagine that this is not an uncommon fear. Since I take a fair amount of them, let me go ahead and put any nervousness to rest. The classes are so hard - NO ONE IS LOOKING AT YOU. Everyone is concentrating on doing the moves correctly. Not to mention, classes are great ways to challenge yourself and push yourself harder than you would on your own. And this is for girls especially - if you can find a class that helps you weight train, TAKE IT! I know that it seems scary, but toning is just as important as cardio! In fact, you can still keep your heart rate up while weight training so you can accomplish both at the same time! That's why I've dropped so many inches. I can push myself when I'm running, but I find it easy to slack off on weight training when I don't have a class or my trainer. In fact, when I run out of training sessions (I only have 3 left), I plan on dedicating myself to classes instead.

I was not very diligent about logging my food this week, so I can't update you on my fruits and vegetable intake. But as far as working out goes, I worked out 3 days last week. Not as many as usual, but it was birthday week. I also made a yummy chicken and bean quesadilla on Monday night. And this week I'm back to logging every day!

Thanks for reading guys! More updates soon!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Happy Birthday To Me!

It's my Birthday!! Today I turned 25.

Yesterday, a friend asked me what I wanted out of 25. I told him I wanted to reach my goal weight. So you know what I asked for my Birthday this year? Money for more personal training sessions. :)

Monday, April 4, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Mar. 31

192.4!!! Down 2.8 pounds from last week!! (Note - I am posting this a few days after March 31, but I did actually weigh myself on that day. This is just the first chance I got to sit down and blog about it!) In the words of my trainer, Liz - who is now reading this, so I must behave! - it just goes to show that you can take a week off, maintain my weight, and come back in and kick some butt!!

I think there were a couple of reasons for this big loss. #1 - After vacation, I think I was retaining a lot of water due to drinking a lot of alcohol. #2 - I was bloated for another reason. (Ladies, you know what's up.) #3 - I was REALLY careful about what I ate because I didn't get to work out as often as I would have liked. That's right - I worked out LESS than normal, but because I was so careful about my food intake, I still lost almost 3 pounds!

Now, I'm not really expecting this week to be so awesome because my 25th birthday is tomorrow. (YAY!) I've been out to eat a lot in the last few days, and it's hard to really know how many calories you're taking in at restaurants. You can't control what they cook your meat in or measure out how much cheese is in your salad. But this is real life! I don't want my birthday to become a reason for me to fall off track (just like vacation), but I am giving myself a little leg room. Just so you know - I have not yet had a single dessert!! That is one triumph!!

I recently found these old pictures of myself from the summer of 2008. That year was very up and down for me - I lost 2 grandparents, had a very disappointing academic year, but I went to study abroad in Paris that summer, which was the time of my life. Unfortunately, I was so extremely overweight, I hate looking at a lot of my pictures. I don't even know what I weighed - I was afraid to step on a scale. I did, however, find inspiration in these photos.

To really appreciate this photo - it must be compared with the new photos I took today. I've been meaning to take some comparative photos for awhile, but you all know how crazy my schedule
is. So here are my newest photos.

May I just be the first to say - HOLY CRAP!!!! I mean, I know I've been shrinking but seeing where I'm at now compared to where I was is SHOCKING to me. Especially that view from the side. My best guess to my weight in the above picture is around 230 lbs. That's about 40 POUNDS of a difference. And who knows how many inches. I'm feeling great about where I'm at - which in truth, can be dangerous. It can lead to complacency, which is what made me start slacking off last year. So, in effort to make sure I'm not sitting into a routine, today I ran 6 minute intervals. I had run for 6 minutes straight, once, at the beginning of my workout. Today I ran for 6 minutes, walked for 2 minutes and then repeated it 3 more times. NEVER have I done that before. By the last running interval, I was pooped. I wanted to stop after 2 minutes! But I kept telling myself, "Come on, Danielle, you can do this. Don't give up on the last leg!" And I finished it! Granted, I wasn't running very quickly, but that's not what I'm working on as of now. Maybe when I can run a mile, I'll work on speed.

That's all for now - I'll update you on my goals in the next post! I haven't forgotten about them - but while on vacation, I didn't keep up with them. But I'll let you know soon! Thanks so much to everyone who follows me!!!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Mar. 24

195.2. That's down 1.4 pounds in two weeks - and one of those weeks I was on vacation! So, not a huge loss considering it's 2 weeks of time, but managing to not gain weight while I was vacationing is quite an accomplishment!

Speaking of vacation - I DID work out some of the days that I was gone. And I managed to make good food choices . . . some of the time. I often didn't track my food in the Weight Watchers website, mostly because I wasn't around my computer a lot. Yes, I could have used my phone to do it, but it's kind of a pain in the butt. I usually only do it if necessary when I'm out and about. Doing it for 5 days would have been a really big pain in the butt. And while I did work out some, I'm sure it wasn't equivalent to my normal workouts. BUT, vacation is MEANT for a little indulgence, right? The lesson is: don't consider vacation an opportunity to eat everything in sight. But don't deprive yourself while you're on vacation either - just like in real life, if you don't give yourself a break every now and then, you will never be able to keep this lifestyle up.

Coming back to my normal routine after my vacation felt really bizarre. And I'm talking about my diet/exercise routine here, not just work. It wasn't necessarily bad or good - it just felt weird. It sort of felt like I was starting all over again with my diet. There was that little sigh of sadness in my soul when I bought salad instead of potato chips. (That's right - sigh of sadness.) But after a day of going back into the routine, it felt just as easy as it had before I went on vacation. So, the first day was kind of hard, but the next days were fine. What I'm getting at is that I can understand why many people (and in the past, myself) struggle after getting back from vacation. But once you get past that first day of eating well, you remember how to do it. You don't have to reteach yourself every time you come back from a trip. Now, if you relapse into old habits for 3 months after your vacation, and THEN you try to get back on track, then you will have to relearn those habits. Morale of the story - don't allow vacation, or coming back from vacation, to become your get-out-of-jail free card. Allow yourself a vacation, then get back to it! You don't let vacation throw you off your job for more than a day or two once you get back, right? Why should your diet - taking care of your body - be any different? If anything, your body should be MORE important.

I'm not sure why Americans are so "work-oriented" compared to other countries. But I'm fairly certain it's one of the habits that has contributed to us being the fattest country in the world. We neglect taking care of ourselves to make sure we do our job. We even choose our jobs over our family and friends a lot of the time. (Just to be clear - this isn't all Americans. We all know people that obsess over their looks above everything else. But I know many more people who put their jobs first and let their health slide. Just an observation.) I am particularly guilty of choosing work/school over taking care of myself. I'll sacrifice sleep, down energy drinks or coffee, and shove fast food into my body just to accomplish a to-do list. Or shall I say, I HAVE been particularly guilty of doing all this. I'm proud of say that I have set aside time in 5 days out of the week to take care of my body, cook once a week, and get healthy food at the grocery store once a week. Interestingly - it's enabled me to get more work done because I'm not exhausted all the time. So taking care of ourselves is a win-win!!

More to come soon, weight loss followers!

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Biggest Loser

I have to write this while it's fresh in my brain.

I was catching up on the Biggest Loser tonight on I was sitting there feeling so proud of these people that I don't even know as I see pictures of them at their starting weight next to pictures of them now. The way that you can see the light in their eyes because they know how far they've come is so inspiring. I'm almost in tears over these strangers!

I used to watch this show with a callous over my heart. I would be impressed by the number of weight they lost, hope they wouldn't vote my favorite people off, wish I had trainers like Bob and Jillian, etc etc. It was superficial interest. I was jealous. I was hardened because I wanted to be able to work out for 6 hours a day. I wanted to have food plans designed specially for me. I wanted to lose 8 pounds in a week! I'm sure I could if I just had all those things.

Now I sit here watching it seeing them as my future. I see myself looking as good as they do, and knowing that I feel as good as they do. I see myself as one of those success stories they show every few episodes who lost all their weight at home. Who is this person that's writing this right now? It's so overwhelming to see emotional changes in me that I didn't even know were taking place. I know that I'm changing my life and that I'm going to be where they are soon enough. I took control of my life, my diet, my fitness. And everyone who knows me knows how much I prefer being in control! It might temporarily feel good to eat chocolate or McDonald's or whatever your go-to junk food is. But I PROMISE YOU - this feels better. No matter what setbacks I have or how frustrated I feel, I am determined to do this. And once I set my mind to something, you can bet your ass that I'm not giving up until I get there.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Mar. 10!

196.6. -0.8 lb. That's a little frustrating. I can't pretend that I'm thrilled with this number. I didn't get to work out on Saturday, and I usually burn a lot of calories that day. I tried to make up for it on other days, but there's only so much you can do.

But - like Courtney on the Biggest Loser - the number went down, so I'm satisfied. I said all this last week - I'm gaining lean muscle mass and losing fat. I'm not remaining static, and I'm certainly not gaining weight. My friend Katy, whose journey has been pretty similar to mine, reminded me that a pound is a pound. Another friend mentioned to me today that the weight looks like it's falling off of me. Why do I feel like I have to do more, lose more, work harder? THIS IS HARD. It will always be hard. I can do my best every week - and as long as my best lets me lose weight, I should celebrate that. The only way I'm going to get to where I want to be is for it to be hard. Because I can either have emotional pain for the rest of my life, or I can have physical pain right now. I'm pretty sure I know which one is better.

Let's focus on something positive - the past 3 days, I have done something EVERY DAY that I didn't know i could do before. On Monday, I ran a half mile without stopping - in 6 minutes. For those of you who run, you know that's not exactly fast. But I don't remember ever running a half mile outside of gym class. And I did it! Not even 2 months ago, I couldn't run for 2 minutes without feeling like I was going to pass out. And now I'm halfway to being able to run a mile! On Tuesday, I ran for 2 minutes at 6 miles per hour. Usually I run at a max of 5 mph. I just thought - I wonder if I can? And I did! And yesterday, my trainer had me do hamstring curls on a stability ball. I've always watched other people do those - and laughed at the vision in my head of me attempting to do it and failing. In case you don't know - here's what they look like -

So, they're HARD! It wasn't easy to do them, and I'm certainly sore today, but it wasn't impossible. I love pushing myself - I love seeing what I can do now.

Goals for this week:
Thursday Mar. 3 - 4 fruits and veggies
Friday Mar. 4 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer
Saturday Mar. 5 - 4 fruits and veggies
Sunday Mar. 6 - 3 fruits and veggies
Monday Mar. 7 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer, tried a new recipe (tilapia puttanesca)
Tuesday Mar. 8 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out (running)
Wednesday Mar. 9 - 3 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer

So, a little better than last week on the fruits and veggies, but not as much working out. Which I knew was going to happen - March is crazy busy! This Monday I leave to go on vacation for a few days, and I hope to do my best while I'm there. My hotel has a gym, and although I know there will be more eating and drinking than usual, I'm hoping the gym and walking around will help counteract it. All I can do is give it my best and see what happens!

Don't give up!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Mar. 4!

197.4!! Can you capitalize numbers? That's how excited I am. That 1.4 pounds lost from last week. I'm now well into "One-derland" as the Biggest Loser contestants call it. That also means that I've lost 7.8 pounds since the beginning of January when I restarted this whole process. Also, to catch you up on how the measurements went last week, I lost a total of 1.5 inches. Not nearly as much as last time, obviously. But my body fat % went down almost an entire percentage point - from 35.8% to 35%. So that means that while my body might not be shrinking visibly, I am losing fat and gaining lean muscle mass. Which is kind of the point.

I will admit that this whole process isn't going nearly as fast as I'd like. But, I feel AMAZING. I feel so fit and limber and strong all the time. I might have sore muscles, but in general my body feels great. I have more energy, too! When I can't work out one day, I actually miss it. (Who am I?!) I'm wearing clothes I couldn't fit into a year ago, and all my other clothes fit so much better. Lately it seems like even my trainer is surprised by the amount of weight I can lift or how fast my heart rate recovers. I feel like I'm addicted to health! I love watching myself do things I've never done before. This week I ran for 5 straight minutes outside - NOT on a treadmill. And then I could run for 4 minutes, walk for 2 minutes 4 TIMES! Running on a treadmill is a great way to work out, but you're not pushing your own body weight nearly as much as when you run on pavement. I couldn't believe I could do that! I'm really looking forward to being able to run a whole mile. I think it will happen fairly soon!

When I mentioned all this to my trainer, she simply said, "It will come." When you make a massive change in your lifestyle, your body takes a little time to adjust. And beyond that, it takes everyone awhile to get into a routine. I feel like I'm there now - and look at the results! In the last 2 weeks I lost 4 pounds! You can't allow yourself to get discouraged early in the game. And if you're irritated that you've let yourself backslide a little, look at me! For 6 months last year I didn't diet at all and I gained some weight back. It just takes a little bit of work to get back in the routine. It might not be fast and easy - but hey, if that was the case, everyone would be a size 2! And it's possible!

Here's my update on my goals for this week:
Thursday 2/24 - 4 fruits and veggies
Friday 2/25 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer
Saturday 2/26 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out (dance game)
Sunday 2/27 - 3 fruits and veggies
Monday 2/28 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out (ran and weight training), made new recipe, Spicy Skillet Chicken and Rice
Tuesday 3/1 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out (ran outside)
Wednesday 3/2 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer, made Grape and Walnut Chicken Salad again

So, 5 days of working out, 2 days of cooking, one recipe is new, and I did alright on fruits and veggies. I think my goal for this week will be to improve on that. But I will say that the Spicy Skillet Chicken was SO yummy! And pretty easy to make. I found that I couldn't wait to eat my leftovers. Here's the recipe if you guys want to try it?

Spicy Skillet Chicken and Rice
Makes 4 servings
4 PointsPlus values per serving

1 tsp olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 medium clove of garlic, minced (I used garlic powder and it tasted great.)
2 tsp Cajun seasoning
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground Cumin
1/3 cup uncooked white grain, long grain (I used brown rice instead.)
14 1/2 oz canned stewed tomatoes
1/2 cup water
1 cup chopped roasted chicken breast
4 pimento stuffed olives

  • Heat the oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the Cajun seasoning, chili powder, and cumin; cook 1 minute. Add the rice and cook, stirring constantly, until the grains are coated, about 1 minute.

  • Add the tomatoes and water; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, 15 minutes. Add the chicken and olives; cook, covered, until the rice is tender and the chicken is heated through, about 5 minutes. Yields 2/3 cup per serving.
For the vegetarians out there - this would be a great recipe for tofu or tofurkey or fake chicken. There's so much flavoring with the spices, I couldn't even tell that the meat was chicken! I hope some of you give it a shot! More to come soon!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Feb. 24

198.8!!!! (Bouncing up in down in my seat as I write this!!) That's 2.4 pounds down this week - which means I lost ALL the weight I gained last week PLUS one more pound!

What an amazing reminder that one setback does not mean you should give up! If I had continued to be upset about my gain last week, I probably would have gained that much weight. Instead, I let it inspire me to do better this week. And here's how I did that - I still didn't make perfect decisions. But when I did slip, I was HONEST with myself about it, put it in my food tracker, and made up for it on another day. Remember that 80/20 thing I mentioned last week? Yeah, it works.

Here's how my goals went this past week:
Wednesday 2/23 - 4 fruits and veggies, tried new recipe (Grape and Walnut Chicken Salad), worked out with trainer
Tuesday 2/22 - 4 fruits and veggies, tried new recipe (Roasted Chicken with Fennel), worked out (Zumba Class)
Monday 2/21 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out (circuit training class)
Sunday 2/20 - 4 fruits and veggies
Saturday 2/19 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out (running)
Friday 2/18 - 3 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer
Thursday 2/17 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out (running)

So, one day of not enough fruits and vegetables, but 6 days of working out AND I cooked twice this week! Which perhaps might explain why I lost so much weight this week. I find that when I have healthy leftovers in the fridge, I want to eat them. Plus, I feel guilty if I cooked food and then I let it go to waste!! Both recipes turned out fine - I can't say that either one is the most delicious thing I've ever tasted, but they are good and very filling. The grape and walnut chicken salad is my favorite of the two - it's made with nonfat yogurt instead of mayonnaise. So it's got a lot more nutrients that your body needs! In case you want to try it, here's the recipe!!

Grape & Walnut Chicken Salad
6 oz of cooked chicken breast (boneless and skinless)
1 cup of plain nonfat yogurt
1 cup of green grapes, halved
1/4 cup of walnuts coarsely chopped

Chop the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Mix thoroughly with yogurt. Add grapes and walnuts. Makes 2 servings. You can eat this on a whole wheat hamburger bun or plain. I actually used Arnold's whole wheat sandwich thins, but they wouldn't support half of the chicken salad. So I ended up eating some of it with a fork and half of it on the bun. Still yummy, though! This recipe is 8 PointsPlus values (without bread) - which is kind of a lot. BUT you are getting protein, fruit and healthy fat. It will keep you full for a long time, so it's worth it.

That's all for today - I'll let you know how this week is going!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Feb. 17

Hey guys -
I know I'm posting this a few days after my normal weigh-in day (Thursdays), but I did weigh myself on the right day! I've just been a little busy since then.

So, my weight was 201.2. DAMN IT! I'm so irritated at myself about falling off the wagon a little bit. And it pushed me back above the 200's, which totally sucks. But I did kind of see it coming. With the stress I've been dealing with lately, I've been eating more (and sometimes eating badly) and stress usually throws your body out of whack and makes you retain water. So there's not much I can do about it except try to do better this week. Which I kind of have. Working out like usual and doing a little better food-wise. Although I had my Valentine's Day celebration and family time this weekend - so maybe a little more wine then I should have had!

I've stayed on the ball about working out, at least. That's usually the first thing to go when I stop seeing results. But I guess that's one of the reasons I have a personal trainer - I'm being held accountable about the gym!

Here's my weekly assessments of my goals:
Thursday, 2/10 - 4 fruits and veggies
Friday, 2/11 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer
Saturday 2/12 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out (step class)
Sunday 2/13 - 4 fruits and veggies
Monday 2/14 - 3 fruits and veggies, worked out (ran)
Tuesday 2/15 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer
Wednesday, 2/16 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out (ran)

Good work on both working out and my fruits and vegetables. No cooking this week, but I had a lot of leftovers and planned dinners so I felt like I couldn't. I'm cooking tonight, though - grilled chicken with fennel.

Even though I'm frustrated and feeling a little static, I'm not giving up. I know this plan works - and I know I'm becoming a more healthy person. One little celebration this week - I wore a dress this weekend that I hadn't worn in 3 years!! So I know this isn't for nothing. Losing weight is just like a relationship - if you give up at the first sign of trouble then you're never going to get anywhere.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Workout Idea

Hello readers!

Tomorrow's my weigh-in day - we'll see what happens! But I just wanted to take a minute to let you know about a really cool workout my trainer had me do last week. It's really simple and you don't need anybody but yourself to do it! Although it could be a fun thing to do with a friend.

What you'll need: a deck of cards, a bosu ball (those blue half circle squishy things), 2 dumbbell weights, and a bench or flat surface about 2 feet off the ground. The weight of the dumbbells should depend on how strong your arms are. Girls - 5 or 8 pounds unless you're very fit. Boys - at least 10 or 15 pounds.

Okay - shuffle the cards or lay them out mixed up. Draw cards one at a time. Based on what suit you draw, you do a certain exercise. Based on what number you draw, that's how many of that exercise you do! It's simple. :) Face cards are 10. We will get to Aces and Jokers later.

Hearts - Stand on the squishy side of the bosu holding one dumbbell in each hand. Raise your arms - keeping your elbows straight - at a slight angle to your body. Not directly in front of you or directly at your sides, but somewhere in between. You should feel this in the top of your shoulders. (This is called a scaption raise.) Then push your arms back (elbows still straight), squeezing your shoulder blades together, like you were flinging some double doors open. Then slowly control your arms as you bring them back to your sides. Repeat based on the number you draw.

Diamonds - Place your arms on the flat surface, and lean your body at an angle. Do a push up at this angle. (Boys - most of you can do these on the ground.) Don't drop your head! Keep it in line with your spine. Once you've pushed up, pick up one knee and bring it to your opposite knee. Repeat with your other knee. Make sure your movement is slow and controlled. (This works your oblique ab muscles.) Repeat based on the number you draw.

Spades - Make sure the space around you is clear. Do a squat (like you were going to sit in a chair), then raise your right leg to your side, working your outer hip muscle. Squat again, then raise your other leg. Make sure that as you squat you sit back on your heels and don't lean forward on your toes. Count based on the number of squats you do - alternate legs. So if you draw a 3, then you will work one leg twice. But it all evens out.

Clubs - Make sure the space around you is clear. Take a large stride back and sink down until your knees make a right angle. Make sure that your knees don't extend past your toes! Push back up and put your feet together again. Repeat with your opposite leg. (These are reverse lunges.) You must do a lunge on each leg to complete one rep. So, if you draw a 10, you have to lunge 10 times on each leg.

Aces - 1 minute of rest. If you draw an ace and you don't feel like you need it yet, you can put it back in the deck. But you never know when you might draw one again!

Jokers - core exercise. This can be a number of things - crunches, crunches on a stability ball, whatever. My trainer had me on a machine-thingy that elevates my body at about a 60 degree angle to the floor up until my hips. My upper body hung towards the ground. I got in it facing the ground and bent over at the waist. The exercise was to raise my body up 20 times, working my back core muscles. Then I put my right hip against the machine and raised up sideways 20 times, working my left obliques. Then I repeated it with the opposite hip against the machine. This is a difficult one to describe without demonstration. But, if you make yourself do some core exercise, you will get the same workout. Bicycle crunches work your oblique muscles, too, so they might be a good substitute. And a prone cobra pose can work your back core muscles as well. Feel free to ask me what those are or look them up!

Other than that, your goal is only to finish the whole deck of cards in 45 minutes. It is possible - just don't quit! I will admit that it may be hard to hold yourself accountable of how many repetitions you do of each exercise, or not taking rest when you haven't drawn an ace. But isn't all of working out about learning how to hold yourself accountable? You have to start somewhere! At least this way it feels like a game, and you're getting a great full body workout.

Bust out of a workout rut and give it a try!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Food = Fuel

Hey gang! Just FYI - this is my 70th post since I've started this blog! That's amazing to me. Thanks for helping keep me on track and for reading my jumbled thoughts!!

This week has been a challenge as far as food goes. I've been able to get to the gym just as much as usual, but I've had lots of food temptations. Saturday night was dinner at a Steak house for my stepbrother's birthday. And while steak is good in small portions (lots of protein!), the bread and wine and broccoli casserole that accompany it are not! Sunday night was girls Valentine's dinner with greek food. Which can be healthy - but feta cheese dip and baklava and the wine that accompany it are not! I've had lots of leftovers in my fridge and I've felt like I've had to eat them. I know as the daughter of a food banker, I should be saying this, but sometimes you just gotta throw stuff away! Plus yesterday was V-Day and my students (thoughtfully) brought me candy and a cupcake! We'll see what happens this week - I'm doing my best to make smart decisions now that all my unhealthy leftovers are gone. Although I still have that cupcake on my counter that keeps calling my name . . .

So, as a reminder to myself and as an effort to pass on pertinent information, I'm going to write a post about food and how you need to start thinking about it. Up until this year I thought of food as comforting, delicious and fun. It was the thing that life happened around - meet a friend for lunch, have dinner with the family, etc. I NEVER ONCE thought of food as a necessity, as fuel. Nor did I think about the fact that my body needed certain things to survive. Not just vitamins or calories in general, but things like protein, fiber and fat. (Yes, even fat!) My trainer has been reviewing my food logging through some WW printouts I've given her and she gave me a lot of great pointers. Including some very helpful (although very technical) magazine articles that helped me understand what your body needs.

Here's the first tip -
1) EAT PROTEIN! If you're working out, your body needs protein to help rebuild the muscle fibers you tear apart when you work out. (Yes, that's really what happens. That's how muscles get toned.) Both before and after your workout, make sure you're ingesting some protein so that you can give your body the fuel it needs. Vegetarians are particularly vulnerable to a lack of protein. In attempt to eat "healthy," I was cutting a lot of protein because it costs me more points. But it's something your body needs! Another perk of protein? It keeps you fuller for longer on less calories. So I could either walk around starving all the time, or I could spend a few points on something that is helping me lose weight. Try to put a protein in each meal! Great examples - lean (grilled) meats, nuts (almonds are best), and eggs.

2) Eat about every 3 hours. This keeps your metabolism running a little higher all day long. I know this isn't possible for everyone - even I can't keep this rule all the time. But instead of thinking about 3 square meals a day, try to do 5. Solid breakfast, small snack, solid lunch, bigger snack (depending on how long you have between lunch and dinner), and then dinner. Not that your snacks have to come at these times. My food timing usually looks more like this: solid breakfast, solid lunch, bigger snack, dinner, smaller snack. I work out between breakfast and lunch so I get hungrier a lot faster. Also I don't wake up that early so there's only about 3 hours between breakfast and lunch anyway. And I like to give myself a small snack after dinner. Even my trainer said it's not that big of a deal. A lot of people have a vendetta against eating late at night, but as long as you're not ingesting too many calories, then your body can handle it. Find a way to work in some snacks throughout the day! When I don't have a break in my students, I bring grapes and almonds that I can munch on a few of in between lessons. If I have a break, I'll bring an apple and some yogurt with granola in it.

3) BALANCE your meals. What does this mean? I'll give you an example - for breakfast, I would often have a bagel and cream cheese and a glass of milk. I'm a BIG bagel fan - I probably won't ever give them up. Now, I was using whole grain bagels and reduced fat cream cheese and skim milk. But I wasn't giving myself the right fuel for the day - carbs, good for energy. But a bagel is a lot of carbs at once. The cream cheese doesn't give me much protein at all - mostly it's just empty calories. So my trainer suggested instead that I eat half a bagel (still carbs, but not as much) with peanut butter on it for more protein. Which helps keep me full. And by adding in a fruit at breakfast, you're giving your body more nutrients. I still have the milk - don't deprive your body of it!! Or another option - I used to eat scrambled eggs with cheese and toast with butter. Eggs - good. Cheese, not so much. Now I cook my eggs over-easy or fried (this term is misleading - it just means that the yoke of the egg breaks. It's not any less healthy than over-easy. But if you don't like runny eggs then its a good option) cooked in olive oil. And I'll eat 2 eggs with one piece of toast. When I really wanted scrambled eggs, I'll use fat-free cheese to cut out some of the empty calories, and still only have one piece of toast.

In short - think about what you're eating before you eat it. What is this meal giving my body? Things like chips are almost totally empty calories - I know, I love them too! But try substituting them for a fruit instead. Not that you can't have chips or french fries - just don't make them a staple. When in doubt, think about this: In general, things that exist in nature are going to be healthy and fill your body's needs. Things that don't - like french fries - are not.

One last tip - follow the 80/20 rule. If you make 80% of your food for the day healthy, then 20% of your food can be something else. Or if you have a lot of temptations during your week, make 80% of your meals healthy that week so the other 20% you can splurge a little. Direct from my trainer's mouth! Keep working hard!! If I can do this stuff, I know you can too!!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Triumphant Day!

Today, I ran for 5 minutes without stopping. I haven't done that in . . . um, anytime I can remember. I wasn't even exhausted at the end - I could have kept going.

Today, I was the best person in my step class. It was the 4th time I've taken it, and I felt like I was rocking. In fact, I'm thinking about raising my step up to a higher level next time.

Today, I held the plank position for an entire minute. 3 weeks ago I could barely do 30 seconds.

Today, I felt my thigh and it felt like solid muscle.

Today, I feel like I can accomplish anything, do anything, fly to the moon if I wanted to. Today I am an invincible bad ass.

Let's see how tomorrow goes. :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Feb. 10

199.4. I'm sorry - did you catch that? 1-9-9. Under 200 again!! I lost 1.2 pounds this week - so I guess I didn't overestimate my weight loss last week after all! That makes me very happy.

In 4 weeks I have lost 5.8 pounds. A little behind my 2 pounds per week goal, but still losing weight at a steady, healthy pace. To quote Courtney, a Biggest Loser contestant this season, "As long as the number is going down, I'm happy." And I really am. I know I'm gaining muscle mass and losing fat, and losing inches and pounds in the process. I won't get caught up in the fact that the number isn't decreasing as fast as I would like. The goal is there to motivate me - and it is definitely doing that. I mean really, if I'm anywhere NEAR 160 pounds by the end of June, do you think I'm going to complain?! No no.

Here are my assessments of my other goals this past week:
Thursday 2/3 - 5 fruits and veggies
Friday 2/4 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer
Saturday 2/5 - 4 fruits and veggies, worked out (step class)
Sunday 2/6 - 3 fruits and veggies, cooked Moroccan chicken kabobs and seven-layer mexican dip
Monday 2/7 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out (dance game)
Tuesday 2/8 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out (running)
Wednesday 2/9 - 5 fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer

All in all - 5 days of working out, plus cooking while using one new recipe, and only one day where I didn't meet at least 4 servings of fruits and veggies. I had made the bean dip before, but it was a delicious Superbowl treat that everybody liked. They were all surprised that it was low-fat. The Moroccan chicken kabobs turned out really nicely, too. Not spicy, but instead flavored with cinnamon and orange juice (among other things). I've been munching on the leftovers all week! Let me know if you want either recipe.

Not to say that this week was all smooth sailing. On Tuesday, I was feeling really tired and DID NOT want to work out at all. I overslept for the Zumba class that I've started taking, and would have been perfectly content laying on the couch in front of my television all day long. But I knew if I didn't at least work out a little bit I would feel disappointed in myself and also I would'nt have as many points to use on food later. So, I dragged myself up and made myself work out. It was only for about 40 minutes, but I still did something. There will always be days when your bed seems like a far better option than the gym. And I'm sure that I will succumb to that temptation more than once in the future. BUT - don't let yourself get out of the habit of working out. I'm sure those of you that are on this journey with me know how difficult it is to start over again once you've fallen off the wagon. Those of you that are currently off the wagon - it IS possible to make your health a habit again. There are always changes you can make that can and will change the way that you feel.

Keep reading! Lots more to come!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Post Superbowl Reassessments

Hey guys! Apart from the Superbowl's very disappointing outcome (freaking lame Packers!), I had a blast of a day! There was SO much food, but at least some of it was healthy! I cooked Grilled Moroccan Chicken Kabobs with onions and zucchini. Which were delicious! And I made a yummy seven-layer mexican bean dip, complete with veggies to dip in it! My friends brought over some unhealthy food (pigs in a blanket, chicken tenders with bleu cheese dip, etc.) which I had a tiny bit of. But, I kept track of what I was eating and did my best to fill up on healthy stuff so I didn't pig out on unhealthy stuff. I did use all my extra points for the week to include alcohol and unhealthy food. But that's why I saved them up!

Having healthy options is a great idea - but that doesn't take away the fact that there will be unhealthy options, too. How well you can/want to contain yourself is up to you. I know I struggle reaching for fruit when there are chicken tenders next to them. But for me, I think about how hard I've been working. Is all that pain really worth that 2 minutes of enjoyment from a little fried chicken? Sure, it's ok to indulge a little bit when you've been working hard. But the bad food just isn't worth it to me right now. Maybe you're not there yet - maybe you still reaaaaaaallly want some fried chicken. It's all about reevaluating how you think about that food. What works best for you? Thinking about the gym? The body you want? Bathing suit season? Just think about your biggest motivation. If you're dying because you can't have something, have a small portion. It will satisfy your craving and keep you from eating everything else in sight.

Also: I haven't done my weekly assessment for last week! Here it is:
Thursday 11/27 - 4 servings of fruits and veggies, worked out (dance game)
Friday 11/28 - 4 servings of fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer
Saturday 11/29 - 5 servings of fruits and veggies, worked out (step class)
Sunday 11/30 - 4 servings of fruits and veggies
Monday 11/31 - 5 servings of fruits and veggies, worked out (treadmill and arc trainer)
Tuesday 2/1 - 5 servings of fruits and veggies, worked out (Zumba class), cooked tilapia with peppers, onions and capers
Wednesday 2/2 - 5 servings of fruits and veggies, worked out with trainer

Lots better with the fruits and veggies this week! And only 1 day of not working out - which can't happen every week but is nice for this week! I think the big reason I didn't lose more weight last week is that I drank a little too much throughout the week. But, things are still going very well. The number on the scale is not what's most important to me. Just the way I look and feel.

More to come soon! Thank you all for following!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Great Day Today!

EEEEEEEEEEE!!! I'm in an awesome place this afternoon!! I was feeling lots better this morning, so I decided to brave the gym and meet my trainer. So, first good thing today is that my cold is going away.

Second good thing - we did measurements again today. I lost 5.75 inches in 2 weeks and 2 days!!!! Here's what my measurements looked like:
Body Fat % - 36.6% Chest - 41.75" Right Arm - 13.5" Waist - 41" Hips - 45.5" Butt - 48"
Right Thigh - 28" Right Calf - 17.5"
Body Fat % - 35.8% Chest - 40.75" Right Arm - 13.25" Waist - 39.75" Hips - 45" Butt - 46.25" Right Thigh - 27" Right Calf - 17.5"
Total Losses
Body Fat % - 0.8% Chest - 1" Right Arm - 0.25" Waist - 1.25" Hips - 0.5" Butt - 1.75"
Right Thigh - 1" Right Calf - 0"

YES! Thank you very much! The only thing that didn't change was my right calf, which my trainer says you see the least change in at first. And also (in her words, not mine), I have muscular calves already. Other than that, the smallest change was my arms, which my trainer also said you see smaller changes in. Other than that, HUGE changes in my waist and butt. Which explains why my pants are fitting better! And body fat percentage is a number that doesn't drastically drop over a short period of time - so almost a whole percentage point is actually a lot.

According to the scale at the gym, I've only lost 2.2 pounds in those 2 weeks. But, in the words of my trainer, there are a lot of fluid fluctuations in the first few weeks. And with as many inches as I've lost, the weight will come, too. Just because the scale isn't showing numbers as big as I'd like doesn't mean I'm doing anything wrong. In fact, my trainer said today, "I love measuring people that are doing the right stuff!" I'm doing a lot of weight training, so my body is losing fat and building lean muscle. It can explain why the weight loss numbers may seem small, but I can see and feel a difference in my body.

Morale of this story - take measurements!!! If you're getting discouraged about your weight loss, measurements may help you see progress that doesn't show up on the scale. Have a friend help you take them so you can get accurate readings. Make sure you take them in the same place every time - for example, measure your thigh at the point where your arm falls if you make a fist.

Last great thing - my trainer kicked my BUTT today! My legs are already sore. :) Keep working!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Feb. 3

200.6. Well . . . . kind of. I've been keeping my scale under my bathroom sink, but I found out today that pretty much every spot on the floor of my bathroom makes the scale read a different number. When I first got on it, it read 201.4. Which is IMPOSSIBLE because I've been working my butt off this week. Another part of the floor made it read 200.2. And yet another part of the floor made it read 200.6. So, I picked the one mostly in the middle. And I've set the scale in a stationary spot and hopefully that will help. Also, I'm supposed to get weighed at the gym tomorrow so hopefully that will give me an accurate reading.

Anyway - that makes 1.4 pounds lost this week. I feel like I've lost a lot more . . . I'm also getting my measurements taken tomorrow. Maybe I've lost more inches than pounds? I have been doing a lot of weight training. I guess we'll see tomorrow.

Small complication this week - I have a cold. I'm not sure exactly how this is going to affect my gym time this week. Yesterday working out with my trainer I got a little light-headed and a lot hotter than usual. I'm not sure if it's the cold or what, but I would hate for it to affect the extra points I can earn working out. Especially with the Superbowl this Sunday.

I'm a little out of it because of my medicine. I'll post more tomorrow when I'll hopefully be feeling better.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Last Day of January!

Hi all! I was just looking at my posts for this month - I posted 10 times!! The last time I did that was last February. Looks like I'm back on the wagon at least for now.

So, this week, as far as workouts go, I've been doing very well. Every day so far except Sunday! I meant to get up early and go to the circuit training class this morning, but I slept in instead. I did still make it to the gym, though!

This weekend, however, I indulged a little too much. I never went totally crazy on just one day, but just enough to eat through all my weekly points plus the ones I'd earned working out. Friday night my friend's band was playing, so I had a couple of drinks at the bar. Saturday night was dinner with a friend that included wine. Sunday was brunch day and then we went to another bar after. Like I said, I never went nuts. And I did still make some good food decisions. For example, Sunday at brunch I had a salad, fruit and a portabella sandwich. But the alcohol just kills your points. ONE vodka is 4 points! So is one glass of wine. So you have 3 of them and that's 12 points. It's a bummer.

I think I may just have to more carefully designate the days that I plan on drinking. This upcoming weekend, since it's the Superbowl, obviously that day will include some splurges. BUT if I do well the other days of the weekend then I should be able to do that.

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that it's all about balance. My mom used to tell me, "You can eat whatever you want if you work out!" That's true to an extent. It's not whatever you want, as much as you want, as often as you want. However, it can be whatever you want in small portions once a week. Don't use little sayings like that to trick yourself out of sticking to your diet - they just end up being excuses.

Keep checking in!!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Checking In On My Goals

So, I've decided in order to help me keep track of how I'm reaching my goals, I'm going to post a weekly checklist to show how I've done that week. I'd like to do it on my weigh-in days, but yesterday I was a little busy.

Thursday 1/20 - 4 servings fruits/veggies, no workout
Friday 1/21 - 3 servings fruits/veggies, worked out with trainer
Saturday 1/22 - 3 servings fruits/veggies, worked out (step class)
Sunday 1/23 - 4 servings fruits/veggies, no workout
Monday 1/24 - 2 servings fruits/veggies, worked out (circuit training & running)
Tuesday 1/25 - 3 servings fruits/veggies, worked out (zumba & running), cooked a new meal (thai curry with chicken & cauliflower)
Wednesday 1/26 - 3 servings fruits/veggies, workout with trainer

So - 5 days of working out, 1 day of cooking (with a new recipe), and an average of 3 servings of fruits/veggies per day. This is pretty great! I'd like to get my fruits/veggies up to 4 servings per day, but I'm definitely on the right track. I said I wanted to be in the gym at least 3 times per week, so I'm definitely keeping that promise. And I cooked once this week while trying a new recipe! I might have cooked more, but I had a lot of leftovers from this recipe so I'm still finishing it off. As busy as I am, cooking at all can be a problem. Plus, I work a lot of nights, so I'm often too tired/lazy to cook when I come home. But I'm working towards having more recipes that I'm comfortable with so that they don't take as long to cook. Maybe I can try cooking in the afternoon so I have leftovers for dinner. Either way, it will happen!

My trainer gave me some new recipes to try, and I also remembered that I had a Weight Watchers cook book I bought years ago. Many of the recipes have different points values now, because of the new Points Plus program, but they are still healthy and well portioned. Still, I have to enter in all the ingredients to the WW website, which is annoying since they made the recipe. You would think they would take care of that!! That's one of my issues with the new program - they haven't gotten all their literature caught up. Change is good, and I think overall this new program encourages more healthy eating habits instead of just eating less. But with as many people as they have working for them, you would think they would get on the ball a little bit more. Even their frozen foods don't have the right points values on them yet! Anyway . . . nothing's perfect. Keep checking in, everyone! I love having your feedback!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Jan. 27

202.0 - exactly 1 pound lost. Still lost a pound, thankfully. I'm a little disappointed with the number, because I've worked out a lot this week. BUT I think I know a couple reasons why it's only 1 pound. #1 - my daily points value just went down, which means I was on the brink of eating too many calories to lose weight. But this week, I'll be eating less calories, and hopefully I'll lose a little more. #2 - I'm bloated due to being a girl. :)

SO - still lost weight. That is something to celebrate. But hopefully next week I'll be under 200. Fingers crossed!!!

I must go work out now. Back to the grindstone.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Defensive Eating & Zumba

This morning I took my first Zumba class. It was definitely cool - a mix of a salsa, bollywood, merengue and generally dance that is designed to make women feel sexy and fit. I burned a lot of calories - about 500 in the 45 minute class - and I was tired after. Here's my hang up, though. It was a small class, and although I was getting the steps right, I felt fat. I felt like I was too fat to be doing these moves. Granted, there were mirrors on every wall in front of me, so I was forced to watch myself as I was dancing. And . . . well, it's impossible not to compare yourself to the instructor. She looked cool - I looked silly. She looked firm and strong - I looked jiggly.

I know that I'll get more fit and I will look better doing the moves. Why do I care how I look to the other women in there? The other women consisted of a 20 something skinny girl who couldn't quite move her hips, a large black women, an elderly woman, and one lady who was smoking at the moves. So, 3 women who probably looked just as silly as me. WHY DO I CARE? I think I'm going to keep going to the class - see if it improves.

One more thing I wanted to talk about today. It's something I call "defensive eating." My job sometimes requires me to eat before I am hungry, in case I get hungry later. I can't stop a lesson because my blood sugar is so low that my hands are shaking. And it's pretty difficult to teach when you feel that way. I also can't pause a gig to stuff my face. This is difficult, because I feel like I'm eating more than I need to, and I don't know how much I need to eat to get through the work day. The only possible way around this that I can see, is that I have to eat smaller meals throughout the day, so I can eat right before teaching or my gig. Hopefully that will keep me from getting hungry while I work.

But, if you still feel like you need a snack during the day, it always helps me to try and eat fruit or nuts. These are easily portable, I can carry them around with me in case I need them. Almonds are my favorite kind of nut to eat, and they're one of the most healthy nuts. A combination of nuts and fruit might make you feel fuller longer. If you find that's not enough for you, another good option are snack crackers (especially if they're made form wheat crackers) with peanut butter or cheese, or a granola/breakfast bar. Might be more calories, but it can save you if you're really starving.

Although I didn't have the greatest experience with my last 2 classes, I really like trying new things. If you don't at least go once, how will you know if you like it or not? I encourage you to do the same if you have the opportunity! More to come soon!

Monday, January 24, 2011


I'm doing my best to update more than once a week, when I have things to write about. I certainly don't want this blog to be boring. But lots has been going on lately!

This week I tried 2 different classes at my new gym. The first one, on Saturday, was a step class. HO-LY CRAP! It COMPLETELY kicked my butt. I burned over 800 calories in an hour!! And I wasn't even doing everything the instructor was doing! It was really fun, but very hard work. The class has 10 different songs in it, and each song has a different theme. For example, one of the themes was "Step Strong" - where we basically did squats and lunges for the entire length of the song. My legs were like jello. One was "Step Agility" where we focused on light footwork. One was "Step Up" where we got our heart rates up really high. Well, everyone else did. Mine was already pretty freaking high! The instructor was funny and there were a lot of first-timers in the class along with me, so I didn't feel like a complete idiot. I'm definitely going to try to keep going to that class! Even once I get used to it, there's a lot more high-intensity steps I can add that I left out this time because I felt like I might collapse. That makes the class sound like it was a downer, but it was still fun. Despite the exhaustion.

The 2nd class I went to this morning, and it was a circuit training class. Basically, they try to work every muscle group in 30-40 minute period. My trainer suggested that I try this class, and she (the fitness professional) said, "You get a really good workout." Okay - when someone who works out for a living tells you that a class is going to give you a good workout, they're not kidding. We started with running a couple of laps around the room and some light stretches. Then we basically shuffled our way through 16 stations - each one different and working different muscles. One minute per station. The stations included: prone cobra, tricep extensions, mountain climbers, spider climbers (like mountain climbers but you put your feet to the side to work your hip muscles), bicycle crunches, regular crunches, plank position, deltoid raises, bicep curls, 2 stations of pushups, running and squat thrusts. I know I'm misisng some, and some are too complicated to explain without demonstration. JEEZ. This class didn't get my heart rate up QUITE as much as the step class, but EVERY MUSCLE in my body is sore. I can see why my trainer wanted me to go - it really is toning for your whole body. This class wasn't as much fun - it felt more like work. And I felt a little more out of place because I couldn't keep up with everybody in the class, even though there were some first timers in there with me. There were even a couple of 60 year old women who were kicking my butt (obviously not first timers, but still). I know it's a class that I SHOULD take again . . . . but maybe after I work with my trainer a little more. I'm not sure though - I'll talk to her about it Wednesday. As competitive as I am, its hard to see people doing something better than me. In the step class, I at least felt good that I could catch on to the steps pretty quickly.

Tomorrow - Zumba!! I'm super excited to try this - I've only heard good things from everyone that has taken it. I will let you know how it goes!

PS to anyone who reads this in the Knoxville area - I can bring a guest at no charge every time I go to the gym. So, if you ever want to try a class with me, just let me know!! Thanks, guys!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Jan. 20

203.0 - a loss of 2.2 pounds this week.

I am . . . . content with this number. To be honest, I was hoping for between 3-5 pounds because I've been working out SO much and really eating well. But, I can't really complain either. 2.2 pounds is a good number for this week. If I keep doing that, I'll be well on my way to a healthy weight.

I've been thinking a lot about my "170 by April 5th" goal - I think it's unachieveable. Even if I lost 2 pounds a week until then, I would only be at 181 pounds. I don't want to disappoint myself because I chose a goal that was impossible. So - I have a new goal. A perfectly achieveable one, if I stick to my guns. To weigh 160 lbs. by the end of June. That's 2 pounds a week with a 2 week cushion. 160 pounds is 10 pounds more than I weighed in high school, and once I get there, I can reevaluate and decide if it is healthy/possible for me to weigh less than that as an adult. For those of you out there who have set goals for yourself - make sure they are possible and healthy. Remember that it's more important to lose in a healthy way (so you can keep it off) than it is to crash diet just so you're ready for a specific event. As MUCH as I'd like to be at my goal weight by my birthday, I'd have to almost starve myself to get there. And I like food. :) So I'll just have to take it step by step.

So, more about my week. Yesterday, I met with a personal trainer at my gym. I got 3 free sessions when I signed up last week. She was nice, but not too much. By that I mean, not so nice that I feel like I can slack, but nice enough that I don't feel uncomfortable around her. We talked about goals, things I wanted to work on, and she took some measurements. ICK - I hate that. But, it is another way to show progress other than a number on the scale. She said we would take measurements again in 2 weeks to see how I've progressed. I told her I really wanted to tone my arms - I've always felt self-conscious about them. I also want to be able to run at least a mile without feeling like I will die. I think the last time I ran a mile was 8th grade gym class and that was only because they made me. Also, I've noticed that the people's bodies who I admire are usually runners of some caliber. So I'm going to try to force myself to enjoy running. After the measurements, we did a short workout. We did a lot of core-specific workouts - crunches of varying difficulty, back strengthening exercises and a glute exercise, too. We also did some "baseline tests" to measure my improvement by. We did a front plank test - that's the one that you lay on your forearms and toes and hold your body up for as long as possible. I HATE that dang thing. But I held it for 35 seconds. We did a push-up test - how many I could do in a minute. I did 7 regular push-ups and 20 girl push-ups in a minute. We also did a squat test to see how many I could do in a minute - I don't remember how many of those I did. But she did say I had nice squat form! She had me warm-up on a rowing machine - great way to get cardio and work your arms, ladies. And we did a little running practice at the end. She also commented on the fact that my running form looked good. It's nice to get compliments from someone who is a fitness professional.

I am SO sore today!!! My shoulders and chest are particularly sore from those push-ups, but my abs are sore too. It's nice to do exercises that aren't machine based - that can get pretty boring. She said we would mostly be doing multi-muscle group activities like that, instead of just machines that target one muscle. I'm actually excited to learn some new exercises. All the stuff she had me do yesterday I can do at home, as well. I meet with her again tomorrow.

Alright friends - have a great week! Remember what you are working for - not just a number on the scale, but a healthy lifestyle for the rest of your life. A lifestyle that will enable you to do whatever you want to do.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Starting Over Again

"I've gone for too long living like I'm not alive. So I'm gonna start over tonight." - Paramore

This week has been like a review in how to REALLY be on Weight Watchers. Logging points, working out, and being honest with myself (and about what I've been eating and drinking. I let myself slide for way too long because I thought I "knew" how to lose weight. I thought I was above counting - and I know why I got there. I was thinking like I did when I had been on the last diet, and I had successfully lost weight for 3 consecutive months. I COULD do all the calculations in my head. So I thought I could still do that, 4 years later. Good luck - especially since WW completely revitalized their points system this year. I was just kidding myself.

Paramore has been my go town workout music lately - and this lyric caught me while I was on the treadmill today. When you're overweight, you're living a half life. You're living a life of "I wish" - I wish I was a size 6. I wish I could go running with my friends. Etc. A lot of times, you don't even REALIZE how miserable you are until you change. I want to live the life that I deserve to live - not the one I'm stuck living because of my health. So here comes the change - I've gone for too long.

Since Thursday, I've worked out 4 days. I have diligently been logging everything I put in my mouth - including alcohol. (It matters, people. TRUST ME.) I've been eating salad or fruit at every meal except occasionally breakfast. I cooked on Saturday night, and last Tuesday I tried a new chicken recipe. Which was DELICIOUS! And super easy. Here it is for you wanna-be-chefs like me:

Grilled Rosemary Chicken

2 tbsp minced fresh rosemary (or the jar stuff, it still tastes good)
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced (or season to taste with garlic powder)
1/4 tsp salt
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 1 pound)

1. Spray cold grid of grill or pan with nonstick cooking spray.
2. Whisk together rosemary, lemon juice, oil, garlic & salt in medium bowl. Add chicken breasts in, making sure to coat both sides of chicken in the mixture. Cover; marinate in fridge 15 minutes, turning chicken once. (I didn't marinate mine this long and they still tasted great. Your call.)
3. Grill chicken over medium heat 5-6 minutes per side or until chicken is no longer pink.

And that's it! Add some grilled/steamed veggies or a salad and you have a delicious meal! Brown rice or wheat toast is a great complex carb if you want to add one.

I'm actually excited to weigh in this week. THAT hasn't happened in . . . . um . . . well, awhile anyway.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Jan. 13

205.2. AGAIN. I didn't lose or gain anything this week. This is so frustrating.

After all my talk about how I "changed my lifestyle" and "changed my eating habits" and all that BS - obviously I didn't do that well, because here I am again. I even worked out the last 3 days for like an hour and a half per day! GRRRRR.

I think I know where most of the problem stemmed from. It's two-fold: #1 - too much alcohol. I just went out too often this week and had too much fun when I did. Alcohol makes you retain water, and at least where I'm concerned, makes me eat badly and much too late. #2 - late night snacking. Even when I haven't had drinks that day, I like to eat late. I do very well most days until about 8pm, and then it's just a mess. Like last night, I ate about 25 holiday shortbread cookies.

The big problem I run into at night is that I have to take medicine at about 11pm, and I'm supposed to take it with food. I COULD make a smart decision or at least limit my serving size, but I usually just allow that to be an open door for eating badly.

Anyway - back to the grindstone this week. I'm not going to let one mediocre week get in my way. Yesterday I finally got a gym membership! And I went to work out there today for the first time - it's nice! I'm looking forward to getting involved in their classes. I also got 3 free personal training sessions which I'm looking forward to! I'll let you all know how it goes!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

This Week

Hello blogging nation! Just a little mid-week check-in. This week has been a tiny bit of a rollercoaster. Thursday (when my weigh-in is, an thus my weight loss week begins) and Friday I was VERY strict and stuck only to my daily points. Saturday was basically a girls day - I went out to lunch with one set of girlfriends and out to dinner (and many drinks) with another set of girlfriends. Eating out is difficult, plus there were drinks involved. It was not the most diet-friendly day, and I didn't exactly make the best choices either. Sunday was much the same - brunch with girlfriends, then wine night with more girlfriends. (Can I just mention that I have the most AMAZING friends on the planet? Ok. :) ) Also not a very diet - friendly day.

Yesterday was a snow day here in Knoxville because there was more than 2 specs of snow on the ground. Which meant I had ALLLLLLLLL day to sit around and snack. I don't have a lot of unhealthy food in the house, but anything in excess is unhealthy. Around 4pm I started feeling guilty and decided to set up the Wii Fit that I got for Christmas so I could at least be active if I was also going to eat. I played with that for like an hour and a half, and then the boyfriend and I went out to dinner. When we came back, we decided to play with another Wii game I got for Christmas - Just Dance 2. Okay, #1 - it's super fun. #2 - I am SORE today! Mostly my arms, but still!! It definitely gets your heart rate up, and until I get to go research gyms, it's going to be the way that I work out.

I have 2 more days of my week left, and I am determined to be strict so I can at least lose something this week, despite my weekend escapades. And I'm definitely working out again today!! Little by little it WILL happen. Love you guys!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Weigh-in Day, Jan. 6

205.2. DAMN IT!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm so frustrated. But I guess there's no better way to start the year than being fed up with my weight. This will, if nothing else, keep me motivated.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

New Goals for 2011

Hey gang! I just got back from vacation where I ate . . . . oh, everything in sight! haha. I did work out a little bit, and walked a lot. But I still kind of feel like a cow. HOWEVER - it's a new year!! And that means - NEW RESOLUTIONS!

I know that last year at this time I was hoping to be between 150-160 pounds. But, I didn't put a number in my resolutions. I wanted the year to not just be about losing weight, but about living a healthy life. My resolutions looked like this: 1) Live a healthier life and take better care of my mind, body and soul. 2) Be a better friend, especially to those that live far away.

I am healthier. I know I'm a lot more mentally healthy. And I weigh less than this time last year, so I am a little more physically healthy. I would like to say I've been a better friend - but I'm not really the best person to judge that. So - those were good goals for where I was at in my life a year ago. This year, I have new goals.

1) Make working out a habit in my everyday life. (at least 3-4 times per week)
2) Eat more fruits and vegetables.
3) Cook more often/try new recipes. (at least 1-2 times per week)

Okay, so obviously I want to make this year healthier. BUT I want specific things that will help me accomplish that. These changes are meant to be lifestyle changes, not just for this year. If I want to be able to keep the weight off, I have make practical changes to my life. And if I do all these things, I will be healthier.

I also have a short-term goal - to weigh 170 pounds by my birthday, April 5th. I'm not exactly sure what I weigh now - my weigh-in day is tomorrow. But I think that's going to be about 30 pounds that I will have to lose. This WILL NOT be an easy goal to accomplish - it will require a lot of restraint and hard work on my part. But the hope is that this goal will keep me motivated enough to not slack off.

I challenge you to make some goals for this year that help you make healthy long-term changes in your life. But also - make a short-term goal for your weight loss that will keep you working towards a healthier life.

So - today I'm going to research a gym membership. And yesterday I bought yummy fruits and salad to stock my fridge with. And tonight Josh (the boyfriend) and I are cooking dinner! A good start to the year so far. :)