Saturday, June 29, 2013

Toot toot!

As I've talked about here, I don't see my "transformation" as other people do.  I've been called amazing, an inspiration, et cetera.  And I have a really sincerely hard time accepting those compliments.  In addition to my own issues with people complimenting me in general, I HATE arrogance.  I can't stand people who constantly brag about themselves.  Sometimes I worry when I make entries here about certain accomplishments that it will come across as arrogant instead of what is often just unbridled excitement.

Yesterday I was running before heading over to the barbeque that I was invited to.  And I passed the halfway house where they were having it after only 1/2 mile.  And I could smell the barbeque and I really wanted to just stop and join the party rather then run my other 6.5 miles.  And then I told myself that it was okay to not run 7, but if I ran 4 that would take me back around to near the house and I could stop then.

I didn't though, I ran the 7 and then went over and believe it or not there was still food left LOL.

 So as I was running I got to thinking about dedication and whether I deserved the compliments that I get.  So for a moment, let's take the numbers of how much I have lost out of the equation.  And let's also take out of the equation what I physically look like - be it good or bad.

And what do we have?  You know what?  My dedication is pretty fucking impression.  To have revolutionized my life in my late 30's?  That's not something most people do.  How many times have I said "no" to something I really wanted to eat?  How many times have I headed out at lunch and run when it has been freezing cold or raining or blistering hot?  How many times have I just wanted to give up and have found the internal strength to carry on?

How many people work a full time job, come home and spend an hour lifting weights after they have already spent their lunch hour running?  Not to mention managing a household.  Or completely given up something they love (in my case that would be Mountain Dew!)

Not too many.  Although I am FAR FAR away from people that have devoted their lives and made sacrifices to be a professional athlete, I do have a glimpse of what they give up to make their dreams come true.

I have altered my life without the help of a chef, or a personal trainer, or a coach, or a sponsor throwing me money.  And as we all know, now that I've hit my goal, I don't just go back to a normal life - nope, this is something I work on every single day.  I do it for ME.  Not for money or fame or recognition.  And I make these posts in the hope that it will help just one person - give them the hope to carry on.

So today, I'm tooting my own horn.  And I hope no one thinks less of me for it!

Friday, June 28, 2013

And I'm off!

T MINUS 4 HOURS AND COUNTING!!  That's when my vacation starts.  For only the second time since I started working, I am taking 2 weeks off in a row.  This is a much needed vacation for me!

As you might imagine, working with drug addicts and alcoholics can be emotionally exhausting.  Now I don't want to be a drama queen - my job is pretty cushy compared to what a lot of people do!  However, it is easy to get invested in the lives of the people I work with, and when they use it can be devastating seeing them being shipped off to state prison.  Then there's the lying and manipulating not to mention their other real issues, like trying to help them deal with things like having their children in foster care due to their drug addiction and trying to help them get them back as they improve their lives.

At any rate, I'm going to take the time off and enjoy myself.  I'm headed out for my lunch run soon and then will be over to a barbeque at one of the local halfway houses.  Then I'll finish some stuff up and head out.

This has been an interesting week.  My weight is holding steady right around 118 pounds.  I usually fluctuate a lot during the week, but it's been steady.  I've gotten a WHOLE bunch of stuff done, so I'm headed into vacation not having to worry about "working" while I'm home - what the heck am I going to do with myself??

Just chilling is extremely difficult for me.  Next month is my one year maintenance-aversary - so far so good!

Hope everyone is entering July feeling as pumped as I am!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

How about some updates??

Anyone interested in a couple of updates?

Ok, let's start off with Chakotay.  I started taking his measurements 1 month ago - May 28th.  I took his measurements last night again, and he has lost 1 inch around his chest and 2 inches off his waist - not too shabby, huh?  

Getting him not to keep eating remains a constant challenge.  But the good thing is that he only eats when I am around, so it's pretty easy to monitor him.  We have noticed a dramatic increase in energy from him.  Marc noted him playing with Archer - jumping up in the air and trying to wrestle a frisbee from him!  He hasn't done that in a LONG time.  So I'm pretty happy that what we are doing appears to be working!

Next, let's take a look at ME.  I wanted to show how much the borthmark has faded from the last treatment Dr. DeRoberts did.  The birthmark is not 100% eliiminated, but boy - you can hardly tell it was there, especially now that I'm a little tanned up!

Finally, a garden update!  A few days of hot weather followed by afternoon showers has done wonders for the veggie plants.  I'm totally psyched!

 You can see the corn, squashes and bean plants in this photo.
Here's a close up of the corn and squash plants.  And, of course, some effing WEEDS!

I continue to feel better - a much needed vacation is coming up.  I am a little fearful as my weight has been ideal this week, and I'm going to have some indulgent days - especially while camping.  But this year, being at goal, I want to just CHILL out and enjoy myself!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Serenity NOW!

I am doing much better since my mini breakdown on Sunday.  If you have never had a disability - and morbid obesity is a disability (we can argue about whether it is a self-induced disability, but it is a disability nevertheless) - you probably just can't understand where my anxiety comes from.

Just imagine for a minute having suffered for years from something debilitating.  And then it is FIXED.  You feel glorious, but there's always that fear that it could come back.  You remember that movie Awakenings with Robin Williams?  That was based on the true story of people in a catatonic state.  This doctor came up with this medication that woke them up and made them fully functional again.  But then the medication stops working and they revert to their catatonic state.

For me, the "cure" to my disability was a combination of dogged determination and drive.  And that's where my perfectionism comes in.  There is a constant fear that if I slip - even for a moment - that this whole fairy tale that I'm living will come crashing down and I'll suddenly be fat and unfit again.  

Intellectually I recognize that this is not true.  I took a month off exercising when I had my surgery and the world didn't come to a crashing halt.  I did have some loss of fitness, but it wasn't that much, and it came back quickly.  So certainly running 14 miles when I had planned on running 16 is not a tragedy.

And IF I gain some weight, I realize that I would just have to buckle down and get it off again. But I am an all or nothing thinker and to me, if I gain 5 pounds, that means that within just a few days I'll weigh over 300 pounds again.

It's scary and anxiety producing.  But today is a MUCH better day.  Marc and I took the dogs to the beach yesterday and we had a ball - the dogs swam and played and I sat on the beach with the warm wind and just was able to relax.  I also got a TON of things done this weekend and have only one more major project to tackle this summer and I will be caught up to my goals.  

I need to realize that I got here through hard work, not a magic wand.  Sometimes I forget that.  So if I was the one that made this happen, I get to control my destiny.  No one except me can take this away right?

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Crossing off the "to do" list....

Well, I still am running around like a chicken with her head cut off trying to find extra hours in the day to get crap done.  I have mixed feelings about weekends like this, because there is a huge sense of accomplishment to get "chores" done.  On the other hand, I feel also like I'm missing out  on just doing fun things because I am "working" all the time.

Take yesterday - the vegetable garden is starting to look good!  Things are growing like crazy and pretty soon we'll be up to our asses in fresh veggies!  The other side of that it that the freaking WEEDS are growing like crazy too!  So I spent at least 3 hours yesterday weeding the garden.  It's better for the plants and we'll be able to harvest them easier but for fuck's sake, it's a lot of work.

Today I am SO mad at myself that I almost started crying.  First off, I got a confirmation e-mail from the place we are camping in a couple weeks.  I made these reservations 9 months ago so that we could get the premium spot at the campground that we always get.  And guess what?  I reserved the wrong fucking site.  I told Marc that I had ruined our vacation.  I am so upset.

If that wasn't bad enough, I then head out for my long run.  It was hot and humid today, exactly as I like it.  But I am an idiot and didn't bring my water.  I got an early start and thought I would be fine.  WRONG.  It was very humid and by mile 12 I was feeling light headed and shaky.  So I broke down at mile 13.5 and texted Marc - telling him I needed water.  

Have I ever told you what an amazing husband I have?  He had just gotten back from a 20 mile bike ride and filled up my water bottle with ice and water and jetted out the door.  He met me right at mile 14.  I fully intended on finishing my run - 2 more miles - but as soon as I stopped running I felt a cold chill and Marc said that I was shaking and wanted me to get in the car and ride home.  And I wussed out and gave in.  I am furious at myself for that - with some cold water in my I could have finished the run!

So then this afternoon we working on more projects such as some planting I needed to finish up and we also painted my park benches and the picnic table that were in bad shape. 

But I still feel like my day has been screwed up.  There's part of me that knows that being less rigid and demanding of myself would be a lot more healthy.  But the other part - the one that tells me I am a loser - wins the day...

Friday, June 21, 2013

Welcome to summer!

Today is the first day of summer and the weather - for once - agrees with the calendar!  It is gorgeous out there!  Unlike a lot of runners who prefer running in cool and overcast conditions, I love running in the hot sun, so I'm looking forward to getting out there today.

This week has been a weird one for me.  I've been extraordinarily busy at work, but have almost caught up! I am trying to keep up with weeding the garden - I wish there was a way to make only the plants grow and not the weeds!!  Also trying - not so successfully - to keep the house clean from what the housekeepers did.

Marc and I are also trying to get some projects done - some of which have been on our "to do" lists for FAR too long.  Stupid things like getting our septic tank pumped - that is happening today.  I think I'll be outside all weekend long and that will keep my mood elevated, for sure!! 

My weight has been really low this week compared to a normal week.  That is good and bad.  It's good for a couple reasons - it helps me mentally.  Secondly, I'm preparing for a challenging couple weeks coming up. Marc and I will be going camping, and will be hiking a lot and burning calories BUT I'm sure that I will be eating way too much - the constant fresh air does that to me!

And then we are having a get together at my house for my father's side of the family.  People have started responding what they plan to bring and O.M.G. - the desserts!!!!  

Last year at this time I was THIS CLOSE to goal and was concentrating on getting down to my goal weight, so I restricted myself.  This summer I am prepared to give myself a little leeway.  

Which brings me to the bad news about my weight being down - I am HUNGRY.  I mean really hungry most of the time.  And it's not psychological.  It's aching physical hunger.  It has even disrupted my sleep which is a BAD sign.  Which means that I need to eat more.  Which means that this weight - I'm wondering if it's sustainable for me, and I'm getting to the point where I think the answer is no.  And that bothers the crap out of me.  

We'll see what happens...

Thursday, June 20, 2013

RIP James Gandolfini

I was sad to hear last night of James Gandolfini's death.  Marc and I were late-comers to The Sopranos hysteria.  In fact, we watched ZERO of it when it was actively airing.  But we were looking for something to watch with our Blockbuster subscription a couple of summers ago and watched all the seasons in one summer.  

Marc and I both remember watching it one day - it was a scene where Tony and Carmella were fighting (verbally) and he was almost gasping for breath.  I said to Marc - "Boy he sounds like a heart attack waiting to happen!"

My life circumstances are different then a lot of people's here.  I don't have kids.  But, as someone whose father died of a heart attack way too young, I can tell you that it had a PROFOUND and DRAMATIC effect on both my brother (who was 15) and myself (age 18).  It has been over 22 years and I can remember that horrible morning with the clarity as if it happened yesteday.  

That's what James' son gets to live with  now.  And his baby daughter will never know her father.

I get caught up here talking about weight loss for vanity related reasons - looking hot in certain clothing, having muscles, attracting attention.  But, the main reason for losing weight is being healthy, right?  Who would you leave behind if you were to die tomorrow as a result of your lifestyle choices?

The next time you buy a pack of cigarettes, the next time you make a cake that calls for 3 sticks of butter and then scarf down a piece (or 2), the next time you "don't have the motivation" so you call off that day's workout - just think about the reality that your choices can radically alter not just your future...  

No one's time on this earth is guaranteed - I could be run over by a truck while running tomorrow - but don't we owe it to someone in our lives - even besides ourselves - to be healthy?

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A matter of perspective...

I have a friend whose name is Sue.  Sue and I got to know each other a few years ago for work related reasons.  We discovered we had some things in common - not the least of which is a very sick and twisted sense of humor - and we became friends.  She has been one of my biggest cheerleaders literally since I lost the first 20 pounds.

One of the first things you need to know about Sue is that she has had it ROUGH.  And when I say ROUGH, I mean it!  From challenges related to her difficult upbringing to what she is facing now - which I'll get to - Sue has had more adversity then any one person should be forced to endure.

The second thing that you need to know about Sue is that she is one of the most wonderful human beings on the face of the earth.  I seriously don't think there is a mean bone in her body.  Her job involves her fighting TIRELESSLY for children.  She is not only incredibly skilled at her job, but she is dedicated beyond belief.  She is also one of the most generous people that I have ever met.  She is fiercely loyal and supportive of her friends - sometimes to a fault.  Meaning she sacrifices too much of herself to be supportive of other people, especially her friends.  

Which gets us to this.  Sue has battled horrific and debilitating health issues for years.  She has had spots of good times, but, tragically, she is sick a lot and has been in and out of the hospital.  She just underwent a series of incredibly painful and invasive treatments.  The last treatment was last Thursday.  

We made plans to have her over for dinner Sunday night.  Saturday she was still so sick that we weren't sure that she would be able to make it.  But Sunday dawned and she felt better and was able to join us for dinner.

As we ate, she filled us in on the treatments - because it is experimental, no one knows what is going to happen now.  And it will be several months before knowing if the treatment worked.  In the meantime she is going to start weaning herself off some medication that has horrible side effects.  Despite ALL THIS - all that she is going through - she never said anything that indicates that she is feeling sorry for herself.  She was able to laugh and have fun.  It was overwhelming to me.

As I thought about it later it dawned on me.  Some people are living with such difficult life circumstances as I sit around whining about the little things in life that bother me.

Guess what?  Living with cancer is HARD.  Having a child who is sick is HARD.  Having to work 80 hours a week to make ends meet?  That is HARD.  Having chronic pain is HARD.  Caring for elderly parents is HARD.  

Guess what is NOT HARD?  Refusing a donut that your co-workers brought in.  Walking 2 miles.  NOT going up for seconds.  Going outside and throwing a ball for your dog rather then sitting on your ass in front of the computer.  Giving up diet soda.  And, note to self, seeing 120 on the scale when you want to see 117?  These things are NOT HARD.

I am going to try to keep this in mind the next time I start feeling sorry for myself.  I can't promise I'll succeed, after all, I'm an imperfect person.  But it is a matter of perspective.

And Sue, I hope that this treatment worked and that it is all downhill from here!  I love you!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Eggplant pizza

This is what I had for dinner one night this week and it was SOOOOOO good I had to share!

Step 1:  Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
Step 2:  Take an eggplant and slice in half.

Step 3:  Rub a small amount of olive oil on both sides of eggplant halves and season with salt and pepper.

Step 4:  Cook eggplant halves for about 30 minutes, face down on a sheet, until tender.

Step 5:  Remove eggplant from oven and carefully scrape out the middle, making sure not to pierce bottom of eggplant.  Place the eggplant middles in a bowl. 

Step 6: I did this while eggplant was cooking - cook toppings for the pizza on the stove.  I used chicken sausage, mushrooms and garlic.

 Step 7:  Once the toppings are completely cooked, throw them in the bowl with the eggplant middles and combine.
 Step 8:  Fill eggplant shells with tomato sauce.
Step 9:  Add in the toppings.

 Step 10:  Cover with cheese (I used fat-free mozzarella)

 Step 11: Place back in the oven for about 15 minutes - until the sauce is warm and the cheese is melted.

ENJOY!!!  How yummy can you get??!!

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Chicken update...

Since we had our chickens attacked, a friend of mine agreed to come out and try to trap the foxes and re-locate them.  The first day he set out the traps, he caught 2 in literally under one hour!

Since then he has trapped 6 more and relocated them away from us.  Yesterday he told me that he trapped the Alpha Male of the group which he described as "one HUGE motherfucker!"

With that capture we decided to let the chickens back out to free range.  Those were some happy chickens!  

With making the decision to free range, we're always taking a risk that a predator will get them.  But I just can't see forcing them to live their lives in a small coop, either.  

Keep your fingers crossed that we got all the foxes and that the chicks can live their happy chicken lives!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Things I Love:

Several months ago, Marc discovered this new website.  Well, not sure how new it was, but we just ran across it.  It's called Fitocracy and it's for tracking your workouts.

It's a community of people that enter and track their workouts, learn from one another and hold each other acocuntable.  Each day you can enter whatever activity you did that day and you get points for each activity. So, for example, for my 7 mile run yesterday, I was awarded 1199 points.

You make your way through levels that get progressively more challenging.  You can also earn points for completing certain "quests".  Those quests can be anything from a specific physical activity or even for interacting with other people on the site.  You get "badges" on your personal profile for achievements that you have made.

Fitocracy has groups for every interest!  Like I am in groups like "Runners", "Dog People" and "Healthy Eating".  

There is every level of fitness on there, from people that are brand new and just track short walking stints to serious and dedicated body builders.

One of the things that I really like about this site is that you can "follow" other people - sort of like friending them on Facebook.  And while the internet is full of assholes, people on this site are really supportive of other people.  They "give props" when you post about the workouts you have done.  It's also a lighthearted and at times irreverent site - like you get points taken away if you log "sitting on my ass" as an activity - LOL.

I have found tons of recipes as well as getting workout advice from being on there.  People talk about all kinds of things, like healthy foods to bring to work, what to do with an injury, or just bragging about how they ran a 7 minute mile or lifted 200 pounds.  Plus, you will be shocked at how it motivates you to put in just a LITTLE more time or do ONE MORE activity because you want to get some extra points. 

I find it a lot of fun and motivating.  So, why not join Fitocracy and see how you like it?  

Feel free to get on and follow me - my user name is jenhudsonmosher :))

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Trying to beat genetics...

So yesterday I had my annual doctor's appointment. I was SO excited for this appointment!  I used to dread doctor's appointments, especially since they always start with the step on the scale.  Now I don't have to be embarassed about stepping on and seeing the nurse move that stupid weight thing up and up and up.  

I had my blood drawn last week for all the labs.  With all the exercising I do and how well I eat, I was 100% certain that my blood results would be fantastic.   


I am absolutely broken hearted.  While most of my blood work - kidneys, thyroid, glucose - were fine, my cholesterol levels are bad.

Overall cholesterol was 205 (over the ideal).  LDL was 133 (borderline high).  HDL was 58 which is good and trigycerides were 76.  I'm glad about those last 2 numbers, but the LDL bothers the shit out of me.

I fricking am running 35+ miles per week.  I eat almost NO processed food.  I cram myself with fruits and vegetables and healthy fats.  I eat red meat once per week and it's the leanest cuts.  What more can I freaking do?

This is a perfect example, I think, of genetics kicking my ass.  As I've told you guys, my father dropped dead of a heart attack at age 42.  His father dropped dead of a heart attack at age 49.  My mother's father had heart problems and had bypass in what, his early 60's (Mom, help me out here!)

I'm trying not to totally over-react.  I know these are not catastrophic numbers and overall, I am very healthy.  With no other risk factors, I think I'm good.  But it is still very discouraging.  

So in consultation with the doctor, here's the plan.  I'm going to start taking fish oil - my Boxers take one every day, so I'll just take one with them.  We'll re-draw blood in 3 months and see where I am at.

Fingers crossed....

On a good note, apparently the scale heard about my bad day and felt sorry for me, because I was just under 2 pounds down from yesterday, putting me in a better place mentally and physically.  

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

My exercise routine

Since I posted pictures of my back earlier, I've had several requests from people to share my workout routine.  I've also had some very positive comments about my shoulders and arms.  I can't tell you how flattering that is!  So I appreciate it and am happy to share what I do.

I'll start by saying this.  I work out 7 days per week.  Most days I work out twice per day.  I haven't missed a day in months (knock on wood).  Some days are really intense where other days are not.  It is important to have low intensity days, and there is nothing wrong with taking a rest day.  I don't like to, but I'm a freak.

 I run 4 days per week.  Sunday is my "long run" day.  A long run used to be 8-10 miles.  I have recently increased and the last 2 weeks I've run 16 miles on Sunday (that takes me about 2 hours and 12 minutes).  The other 3 days I run on my lunch hour and run 7 miles (that takes me about 55 minutes).

I lift weights 3 days per week.  On Tuesdays and Saturdays I do upper body work - I do 45 minutes.  Wednesdays are my lower body days - I do 60 minutes of this.  For second workouts or Monday I do a variety of things - DVD's like P90X Kempo, Plyometrics or Core Synergistics, kickboxing, Zumba or I do core/ab work - like push-ups, crunches, planks, etc.  These workouts range from 45-60 minutes.

I do "lift heavy".  By that I mean I don't use girly 2 pound weights - I'm talking lifting the heaviest you can.  You won't bulk up, I promise.  I repeat - you WILL NOT GET BULKY.  If you are new to weight lifting I HIGHLY recommend the book "The New Rules of Weight Lifting For Women".  It's one in a series of books, but this one is perfect for women. 

It is designed to be used as specific workout routines and a lot of women use and LOVE it.  It also has very specific nutritional/meal guidelines.  I haven't followed the routine, but the background and the importance of diet and nutrition and why to lift weights is AMAZING.  It goes into a TON of detail about muscles and the benefits of building them and the difference between compound and specific lifts.

Remember, the more muscle mass you have, the more calories your burn - EVEN WHILE AT REST.

Here are some pics - and I look crazed in some of them - lifting heavy is HARD and should make you exert yourself!

  Bicep curl on Bowflex - 80 pounds.

 Military press - 40 pounds using barbell.

Arnold press using 10 pound dumbbells.  Doesn't sound like a lot, but it is.  I'm ready to move up to 15 pounders shortly I think.

Chin ups - these are fundamental exercises that work all kinds of muscles - they are generally pretty hard to do!

Bench press on the Bowflex using 80 pounds on each side.  Bench presses are compound exercises that work a lot of muscles!

These pics are from yesterday - I did legs tonight and deadlifts.  It feels good to be strong and fit!  Good luck to everyone who is starting exercising and let me know if you have any questions!  I'm happy to answer them!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Motivation and commitment once again!

Look at this incredibly sexy model:

Oh she is sooooo motivated to get out there and exercise!  I'll bet she doesn't even sweat - she probably GLOWS!

Now look at this incredibly UNSEXY non-model:

She looks a mess, but she is COMMITTED!  Yup - it is cold, raining, and miserable out today.  And it's a run day for me.  I had the old internal debate with myself about whether I was going to go for my scheduled run or stay in where it was dry and warm.  

The devil on one shoulder gave me many, many perfectly understandable and acceptable reasons not to run.  And the angel on the other shoulder calmly explained to me why I should run.  I almost hit the bitch, especially since I have the FUCK-ITS after a really bad weigh in this morning.  

But you can clearly see who won and guess what?  

It's easy to get your ass out there when the weather is perfect and your mood is perfect and the timing works out and there's nothing else to do and the house is clean and the work is done.  But how often does that happen?  It's easy to make excuses - most of them are even right!

So, to what lengths are you willing to go to meet your goals?  It's all about forgetting the RIGHTNOW that so many of us - including me - are good at and focusing on the WHAT ABOUT TOMORROW?     

I thought about that last Friday as I was running past Dunkin' Donuts and knew that they were giving away free donuts for National Donut Day.  I was thinking how good a donut would taste.  And then I was thinking how I would feel the rest of the day - after the donut was gone.  And I kept moving.

But I'm telling you - the scale BETTER be nicer to me tomorrow, DAMN IT!!  :))))

Monday, June 10, 2013

What do I weigh?

When you are as tied to the scale as most of us who are trying to lose weight are, the flucuations can be incredibly frustrating.  I recently saw a discussion with someone wondering what their "real weight" is.  

If you try to track your weight on a daily basis and judge how you are doing, you'll be bound to drive yourself nutso.  There is nothing wrong with daily weighing - I do it! - but so much can influence how much you weigh at any given time, that it is not productive to obsess about fluctuations.

A better way to go is to create a graph and look over your long term progress.  I recently found this site and I wish I had looked for it when I was actively losing:

I'm just starting to use it, but it looks pretty customizable and it's FREE.  

So let me give you an example of weight fluctuations.  Yesterday I woke up and stepped on the scale and it was 119.5.  I then went out for my run (16 miles).  When I returned from the run - hot and sweaty - I again stepped on the scale and it read 116.0.  This morning I got up and stepped on the scale first thing and 121.2!

I wish that I could tell you that I don't get upset about these fluctuations anymore, but I am trying!  I certainly didn't truly LOSE 3.5 pounds while running.  And I know I didn't GAIN 1.7 pounds of fat since yesterday.  I still HATE to see anything over the 119 number.

It remains a constant battle for me.  I see the doctor for my annual appointment on Wednesday and I anticipate talking with him about my weight again.  I am more anxious to see what my cholesterol and other levels are and if they have improved or stayed the same since last year.  

So I hope that graphing your weight will help you to have less reliance on the dreaded scale!  Do as I say, not as I do, right?

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Lean and mean!

Everyone who knows me knows that I have always been mean!  But never in my life have I ever been what could remotely be described as lean.  Even after losing the weight, I think of myself as thin-ish, but not lean, that's for sure.

You may remember that about 3 months ago I talked about working my back and trying to get some muscles to "pop" back there, but it wasn't working.  So for 3 months I've taken the advice of people and been really focusing on those muscles and doing things like pull ups to build those lats up.

I haven't really seen a difference, so I posted on 2 different sites that I am a member on asking for advice, again.  And I posted this pic:

I had some suggestions, but on both sites, 2 separate people told me in their comments that I am "really lean" and that I would have to eat more calories to start to "bulk" up those muscles.

The comment of "lean" has totally and completely thrown me off.  I really don't see it.  I still see layers of fat and places where I need to lose weight.  I had Marc take a front pic this morning and I see reasonably thin, but not "lean".

 At any rate, people that know a LOT more about lifting weights and building muscle then me gave me great advice.  In order to build muscle I would have to increase calories (and gain some weight in the form of muscle), eat SUPER clean to get my body fat really low (below 20%) and count macros.  This means counting protein, fat, and getting certain amount of grams of each each day.

So, am I willing to do this?  NOPE.  So I guess what I have will have to be good enough.  I'm going to continue to lift and keep the muscles that I have and maybe I'll even tone a little more in certain places.  But I don't want it THAT BAD to make all of those sacrifices.   

Hmmm... settling for "good enough - that's progress, right?

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Full on dork!

Well, I did it - went full on dork and got the sticker for my Edge!  A cheap and geeky birthday present to myself.  It came in the mail today!

Friday, June 7, 2013

Cauliflower mashed potatoes

So I've been reading about making this forever, but for some reason have never done it.  People that are trying to stay away from carbs often mash cauliflower instead of potatoes.  And we're talking loooowwww calories.  Cauliflower has 7 calories per OUNCE.  So you can eat a full POUND of cauliflower for only 112 calories.
Marc and I went grocery shopping after work today so I said "Hey!  Let me grab some cauliflower and try this!"  I'm not going to call this a "recipe" because there really is no recipe to it.
Here's what I did:  Chop the florets into pieces.  Bring a pan of salted water to a boil.  Throw the florets in.  Boil for about 10 minutes.  Take off the heat and drain.  Threw in some pepper, garlic powder, a splash of skim milk and then took a hand blender and mashed it all up - it mashes reallllyyy easy, so you could probably just use a hand masher.  Then I added some reduced fat Parmesan cheese and stirred.

I wasn't sure how it would taste but it was freaking DELICIOUS.  Marc loved it too!

You will find dozens of recipes if you google "mashed cauliflower" - so let me add a couple opinions:
  • Lots recommend 1/4 cup of instant mashed potatoes to thicken it up.  It was plenty thick for me.
  • Recommendation of butter and/or sour cream and/or cream cheese.  Totally unnecessary calories.  This was plenty flavorful with just spices and the Parmesan.
  • Add whatever spices you like - I might try adding barbecue flavored spice next time.  If you like things spicy, add paprika or cayenne.  If you like sweeter, add nutmeg.
  • Some people add "real" cheese - like goat cheese or cheddar.  That would be good but would really ramp up calories quick.
So, in like 15 minutes, you can whip this up and it is delicious!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

I am not my mother...

So I have posted a ton of really embarrassing things on here.  So why I would be reaaalllyyy embarassed to talk about this, I don't know.  Other then maybe it makes me feel like a failure or something?  

When I was a kid, our house was so clean!  My mother was a cleaning maniac.  Every Saturday morning I can remember laying in my bed trying to sleep in and she would be cleaning my brother's room and my bathroom singing at the top of her lungs.  In my selfish teenage times especially, this would realllllyyyy annoy me because #1) It woke me up and #2) While she had a good singing voice she typically would sing the same 20 seconds of song over and over and over again rather then singing the whole song!  

She would then move on to dusting and vacuuming.  And my mother was NEVER the type to let dishes sit.  Nope - as soon as the meal was over they would get washed and later, when we had a dishwasher, they would get placed in the dishwasher.

She did this all while working full time and taking care of the family.  My father never helped out with indoor chores and neither did my brother and I.  

I did not inherit this drive.  I HATE cleaning.  I mean I HATE it.  I was always a SLOB as a kid.  Not dirty, mind you, just messy.  And that has continued into my adult life.  AND Marc helps out a lot so I have no excuse!  But, it is what it is.

So last week after just feeling completely overwhelmed and having no time to do ANYTHING and looking at our bathroom that needed to be cleaned, I threw up my hands and called a housekeeper.  She came out and gave me an estimate and she was hired.

As we speak she and her team are scrubbing my house top to bottom.  I can't wait to get home to a sparkling clean house.  There are better things I could be doing with that money, I know.  But I guess when weighing it out, it's about priorities and balance, and this is worth it for me.

After she cleans today, she'll let me know how often she recommends coming in and how much it will be.  I'm thinking I won't be able to afford it, but starting with a clean slate will help me - in theory - keep up and if I do a little each night, I won't need her to come in again.

That's my hope!!  Because this I will never be:

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Tough love

This quote today is dedicated to ME as well as to anyone else that is sitting on the pity pot feeling sorry for themselves:

I've been seeing a lot of posts on the weight loss site that I am on from people saying that it is IMPOSSIBLE for them to lose weight.  They then offer the following - multiple excuses for why they can't eat healthy and exercise AND usually they say they have only been eating 900 calories a day and are otherwise being perfect.

What is the bullshit story you are telling yourself?  Are you telling yourself you are at 1200 calories a day, but then you don't count the little bite here and little bite there that you are snacking on?  Do you eat your meal and then hold up your fingers and say that you ate a small piece of chicken and it could not have been more then 100 calories?

You can't guess and pretend your way through this.  I figured that out the hard way.  Every little bite of something adds up.  Once you achieved your weight loss goal, then you may choose to loosen up, listen to your body, not count everything as I'm trying to do.  Or you may choose to continue to count calories like a lot of people do.

But during the process?  You have to be rigorous if you want to see results.  

I've been trying to justify why I can't seem to get down and stay down to the weight I want to be.  It's not that I just did a long run the day before.  It's not that I ate too much salt.  Or that I have DOMS (Delayed onset muscle soreness) from weight lifting.  IT IS BECAUSE I AM EATING MORE CALORIES THEN I AM BURNING.  It's that fucking simple and depressing.  

I WANT to eat like I did on my birthday - whatever I wanted and with abandon.  BUT I don't want the consequences.  I can't have both and that sucks.  But telling myself that it's something other then what it is isn't doing me any favors.

Suck it up, Princess!  Either do it or don't.  The world will revolve either way.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Whew - a whirlwind!

Wow - the last couple of days have been a whirlwind!  I swear - I just don't know how time can move so freaking fast!

On Sunday, I went on my scheduled "long run".  Was not sure how far I was going to go, but ended up taking a different route then I normally do.  I made a choice at 8 miles to continue a loop rather then take the shortcut which led to me running the longest distance I have ever run - 16 miles!  

It was pretty humid, and my time was quite slow (2:12:11), but I'm pretty amazed that I did it.

This weekend they had a festival that they have every year in the nearby village, and associated with it, everyone has their rummage sales going on.  It looked like rain so most people weren't having theirs Sunday morning, but some had stuff still outside.  I ran by one place and they had some barbell weights out by the road.  When I got home, I grabbed Marc and we went over to the house.  I went up and knocked and asked the woman how much she wanted for the weights and she said to just "take them".  OMG - SCOOOORE!  Any of you who lift weights know how incredibly expensive they are.  So we loaded them all in - they are in mint condition!  

That day, my mother had us over for dinner for my birthday.  It was a fun, relaxing evening.  

Yesterday was my birthday and I took the day off work.  We left the house pretty early and ate early in order to get to the movies on time.  We NEVER go to the movies, but we had a gift certificate and since we are both Trek geeks, we wanted to see the new Star Trek movie.

A quick stop a Walmart on the way home and then - holy crap - it's 6PM!  Where the hell does the time go??!!  I seriously feel like I'm constantly chasing time that is slipping through my fingers.  We managed to get in a quick 4 mile walk with the dogs, but geez, it isn't half of what I wanted to get accomplished this weekend.

I am detoxing today after totally over-doing it for my birthday lunch - and I mean TOTALLY over-doing it.  But it was planned and I enjoyed myself, so what the hell.  Back on track for the rest of the week, right?

Now that summer is here, and my birthday is over, it's time to re-evaluate my time management and priorities.  Wish me luck!  I don't mind being busy but constantly feeling like I'm chasing something is starting to get overwhelming.    

Sunday, June 2, 2013

My last blog post.

Hey guys.  Well you read the title correctly.  This is my last blog post...


Heehee.  Did I fool anyone?  Did you even care?  :))

Yes, tomorrow is my birthday and I'm not thrilled.  For any of you that were reading last year, you know that I was absolutely devastated to be turning 40.

As it turns out, it really was just another year.  I mean the world didn't come to a crashing halt because I hit the magic FOUR ZERO number.

40 will forever be known to be as the year I dropped to my goal weight.  I continued to get fitter and more defined.  But other then that, nothing revolutionary happened over the course of a year.

Tomorrow the plan for Marc and I is to go out to lunch and then go see the new Star Trek movie.  I'm looking forward to a fun but low key kind of day.

I still face my birthday with a ton of regrets for roads not taken.  Decisions that I could have - SHOULD HAVE - made years ago continue to haunt me.  I am trying to just look forward to my first summer as a "real person".  Not obese, not trying to lose weight, just being me.  I'm hopeful but actually nervous to be facing the summer months.  Routine is so important to me, and summer tends to be anything but...


Saturday, June 1, 2013

Decision, Decisions...

Welcome to June everyone!  Despite a really frigged up week, I'm getting my mojo back a bit.  It has been extremely hot and humid which, as you all know, I love.  So that has definitely helped.

So here we are in June.  We'll all have a LOT of decisions to make this summer.  Where do you stand?  Are you actively going to try to lose weight or are you going to maintain for the summer?  I was still in the losing phase for June last year, and it can be challenging.  

I saw this yesterday and while it's a "no shit, Sherlock" kind of quote, it really struck me and I've had it on the brain:

This is SO true.  You can't just throw your hands up and give up because you have one slip up.  On the other hand, you can't do what so many people I talk to do.  They eat right and exercise for like 2 full days and expect the scale to instantly reward them with a 3 pound drop.  Sorry folks, it doesn't work that way.

You need to be prepared this summer and have strategies.  Summer tends to be very on the go.  So you should always be prepared with filling, healthy snacks so that you don't feel tempted to enter that drive thru.  And evening meal planning become crucial so you're not stopping and grabbing a pizza all the time.

And how about strategies for BBQ's?  That can be challenging!  You don't have to be perfect, but smart thinking can help!  Don't hover around the food table mindlessly eating chips and dip.  Go sit down and talk to someone!

Choose healthier options!  If they offer turkey or veggie burgers, choose those!  Only hamburgers and hotdogs?  Have one without the bun!  Use mustard instead of mayo!  Eat the baked beans instead of macaroni salad.  Avoid alcohol.
Go for fruit salad for dessert.  Or have A cookie, not 6.  And when they break out the volleyball or frisbee get out there and play.  Even if you look stupid, just move!

You can still have a ton of fun this summer without destroying everything you've worked for!

What is your strategy for the summer?  Anyone care to share their healthy go-to snacks?