Saturday, December 29, 2012

My year in pictures!

This is my year...well the last several months at least. The progress is slow but steady.
Picture 1: June -221 pounds
Picture 2: July -210 pounds
Picture 3: August -198 pounds
Picture 4: September -190 pounds
Picture 5: October - 187 pounds
Picture 6: November -186 pounds
Picture 7: December -182 pounds
Just goes to show how much your body can and will change!

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Friday, December 28, 2012

New Year Resolutions

The New Year is Upon Us Again!

I am still in shock with how quickly this year has flown by, and how much I have changed this year. When 2012 started I was 231 pounds, eating whatever I wanted, never exercising, very insecure, and really down on myself. When I went for my annual visit in January  my doctor told me I was obese. I started 2012 with the resolution to lose weight. Just a general thought, lose weight, but no real goals or anything. Just one of those many resolutions that millions of people make each year but never stick to.

This time I stuck to it..well eventually!

The first six months or so I just kind of played with my diet changes, and did not exercise at all.

And then in June, while on vacation I saw this picture of myself. Up until then I had completely avoided having my picture taken.

 
In this picture I was 221 pounds, so in six months I lost 10 pounds.

This picture, and the doctor telling me I was obese, was my defining moment, that moment when you look at yourself and realize things have to change! I knew that if I wanted to enjoy my Scarlett for as long as possible I needed to get healthy. I knew that if I wanted to enjoy the rest of my life without health complications, I needed to get healthy. 

My life took a dramatic turn in June. 

I finally decided to take my resolution serious. I guess that makes it a not so New Year Resolution..but hey..whatever.

As of now I eat clean, exercise daily, and love myself completely. Even the parts that I don't like I love!

This is me as of  December 2012!

 
I am 38 pounds lighter in this picture. That was done in 6 months. Total loss of 48 pounds!

Here is a side by side of the two...


Now to the whole point in this horribly schematic set up...stick to your goals.

It doesn't have to be a New Year's Resolution, make it a December 29, 2012 resolution. Start tomorrow. Shoot...Start right now. But whenever you start, keep at it. It has been one of the most demanding, aggravating, challenging, emotionally draining, physically enabling years in my life...but dang has it been worth it! 

I still have a ways to go, and I update my goals everyday. But I am so freaking proud of how far I have come! I have made a New Years Resolution. Want to know what that is?

My Resolution for 2013 is....

Be the Best Me I Can Be!







Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Holidays Are Upon Us!

AHHHHH!

Just had to let that little yelp out!

It is that wonderful time of the year that we all love so much. Everything is green, red, and sparkly! The weather is nice a cool (I'm in Florida...no such thing as cold)! The Christmas lights are all gleaming...and the yummy food is baking!

Wait! The baking! The food! The sweets! The...oh no I ate TOO much feeling!

This is a difficult time of year for those of us trying to lose weight and maintain a healthy diet. There is so much pressure put on you to join in on the family eating festivities, and guilt tripping when you don't. It is hard to refuse sweets and such most days of the week, when there is no holiday, and the holiday only makes it about a hundred times worse.

I have a huge sweet tooth. HUGE! I love all the yummy sugar cookies, gingerbread men, cakes, pies...if it has sugar in it, I dig in. Well I used to anyways. I have worked really hard on my self control. Fighting that little devil over my shoulder that eggs me on to eat it...and letting the angel that has my health interests in mind whoop his ass! In a sense I have been kicking my own butt in order to stay out of sweets. I allow myself some every now and again to ensure I don't binge. Everything in moderation.

My family makes some killer desserts...one of the reasons we are all over weight. Well this year I am in charge of desserts, and I am going to make them healthy. And what they don't know will not hurt them! I saw a wonderful Pin on Pinterest  for a fruit dessert Christmas tree and I am so stoked to try it! I am also looking at healthier brownie recipes to make an alternative for those that are not really fruit fiends.

The whole point I am trying to make with this is just because the holidays seem like a good reason to stray from your diet/healthy eating...ITS NOT! Don't use it as an excuse. Instead use it as an incentive to try new things..I know I am!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

SpiderTech Tape Review

Oh the joys pains of  running!

While the mental aspect of running is amazing, the physical can be a bit disabling sometimes.

A few weeks ago I shared a picture on Twitter of my poor ankle wrapped in an ace bandage. After a super leg session at the gym, and finishing that off with a couple miles run, I thought I was going to die from a pain shooting down into my ankle from my calf. I thought maybe it was sprained or strained and just babied it some.

Then on Saturday I went for a 3 mile run. I was about 200 feet from my driveway when my calf turned to putty. Completely obliterated. I pulled it. Ouch. Thankfully I was close to home. It dawned on me that the pain in my ankle was actually pain ascending from my calf. Make sure you listen to your body. It will let you know when something is not right.

I hobbled the rest of the way home, sat on the front porch, and thought about crying.

While I sat there it dawned on me that SpiderTech Inc. had sent me a sample of KT tape, which is kinesiology tape that you use to tape muscles to prevent injuries, wear during sports for support, or wear after an injury to aid in recovery. The sample I had was two of the X Spiders and I was anxious to try them out, more or less anxious to relieve some pain. I pulled out the samples that came with a diagram of how to apply the tape to your affected area. They also have how to videos on their website. I watched the video...followed the steps...and felt almost instant relief!



I cannot stress enough how great this tape works. I still have pain, which is to be expected with such a harsh injury. No matter what you do you are using your calf muscle. It is a central muscle. A bad one to injure! I had 3 days of relief and the tape was still sticking..no rolling or lifting. Even my one year old had taken a couple shots at it. I looked into ordering more and the prices were unbelievably affordable. I picked up some KT Tape($9.95) from the local pharmacy to replace what I had peeled off, while I wait to order from SpiderTech. 

They have Pre-Cuts for specific muscle groups, the X Spider which can be used anywhere alone or with Pre-Cuts, and they also carry a Gentle brand for those with sensitive skin. As far as removal I just pulled at the top and it peeled right off. If you have sensitive skin I recommend using baby oil. It did not hurt but I have sun worn skin and no sensitivity.

So all in all this is a wonderful product if you have an injury, want to prevent an injury, or need a little support for a certain muscle group when you work it out!


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Two Pound Prayer

I am going to share something with you that I am a little ashamed of sharing, but I know I am not the only one that has done it.

Right before I step on the scale once a week, I pray for a two pound loss. I deem it my 'Two Pound Prayer'!

As silly as that sounds I did this for a really long time. I would take a deep breath, close my eyes, step on the scale and pray there was a loss. Finally the stress of that got to me. Weight fluctuates daily, and it can jump up to 5 pounds depending on where you are in your cycles (if female) or how much water you are retaining. I was driving myself nuts watching that number. I was obsessing over it. I stepped on that darn thing every time I walked by it.

Then Dustin made the comment that it had become a permanent fixture to my feet and  I realized I had formed an unhealthy relationship with the scale. I decided to put it away and join the local SAA...Scale Addicts Anonymous.

I hopped on MyFitnessPal and started trolling the forums for things related to my problem. The more I read the more it began to sink in that I was not the only one with this problem, and that there was a better way to track my weight loss...one that is way more accurate and one that is a whole lot more healthy for you mentally! Want to know what that is...

Take weekly measurements with a measuring tape!



You should measure around your neck, chest, upper arm, forearm, wrist, waist (at navel and narrowest point), hips (at widest point), thighs, and finally the calf. Even though the scale is moving SUPER SLOW, the inches are melting off, which means that I am losing body fat! I have lost 50% of the body fat I need to lose in order to be in a healthy body fat range. That is a lot especially when you compare that to the measley 40 pounds I have lost (still proud of that though).

Either way the take away from this is to stop obsessing over the scale and pull out that tape measure. Hold that darn thing accountable for your success...because that scale is an evil sucker that will lie to you every time!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Starting P90X

I have looked into the Beachbody P90X fitness and nutrition program for a while now, and always felt that it was too pricey for our budget. I also felt I needed to be in better physical condition. I have been working so hard for nine months and I finally feel that I am at the level needed to take on such a challenging program. Well a girlfriend of mine loaned me her set and I cannot wait!

I am so excited to take on this challenge!



I have no idea what to expect other than a killer workout. I have no idea what kind of results I will get. I have no idea how sore I will be. I have no idea what kind of challenge lies ahead of me. What I do know is that I am 100% ready to accept whatever Tony Horton can throw at me, and use it to improve my body!

I will start my 90 day challenge on Monday, December 17, 2012.

I planned to start today but realized I need a yoga mat, heavier dumbbells, and  a pull up bar. I will pick those things up this weekend (used and cheap at Play It Again Sports)! I cannot do a pull up yet and I hope that I will be able to do at least one by the end of my 90 days. I can partially pull myself up but not completely. That is a goal I have set for myself.

So Sunday evening I will take my before pictures, then take them again at 30 days, 60 days, and then my final results. I will share my first day experience and I will also share my start pictures and every 30 days progress with you. If there are any readers who would like to do the P90X with me, please feel free to email me at mommyweighless@gmail.com or message me on my facebook page facebook.com/mommyweighless!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Stop Dieting

I cannot express enough how important proper diet is when it comes to weight loss and healthy living.

Sure you can ingest a couple of drops of a "hormone" and eat 500 calories and lose a ton of weight...but who wants to starve? Like it or not FAD diets DO NOT work. Nine times out of ten all the weight you lose, and then some, on a fad diet will return.

Every day I am bombarded with emails from companies that have the next great weight loss tip or tool or whatever crafty word they use to describe their fad. And when people are desperate they will try anything and everything. These companies know this. They take advantage of our desperation. And rob us blind.

You do not need a pill, shake, wrap, surgery, hormone, expensive program, or anything else of that nature to lose weight. All you need is good quality foods, proper portions, and exercise. I have said it before, weight loss is 80% diet and 20% exercise. You cannot exercise away a bad diet. Your body needs good wholesome carbs, fats (yes I said fats), and protein. I also believe that every now and then you should treat yourself to something yummy, but do not over indulge.

I have lost 40 pounds, slowly, but healthily. I did not use anything other than good food and exercise. 



I practice what I preach.

One thing you must remember is that you did not put on all that excess weight in one month, and you will not lose it in one month. This is a slow process. It takes time and patience. You will not get instant results.

No. Wait. That is a lie.

You do get instant results.

You will instantly feel better about yourself if you make the choice to eat healthy and move more.

I  get so tired of people asking me how I do this..what is my secret. I am sharing it with you now. Eat right and exercise. I think I have said that about 100 times now. I am also tired of people asking for my help but making excuses for why they cannot do it. If you are not going to take my advice and utilize it do not waste my time. I hate to be so blunt but I cannot do this for you...you have to want it. Until you want it you will not change.

Back on topic. Stop looking for the next best thing, or the easiest fix. Put on your big person undies and do it the hard way, the nitty gritty way, and get your hands dirty so to speak. Do not rely on some corporation making millions of dollars by telling people they are fat, to help you change your life.






Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Victories: In My Head At Least

So yesterday I painted my own toenails...why is this news you ask?

Before I would have someone else do it because I couldn't bend over like that or breathe when I did it. But yesterday I did it and never lost my breath and bent like a pretzel with no discomfort.

This is what is called a Non Scale Victory or NSV for short...or a weight loss victory not related to the numbers on the scale or tape measure. I decided I would share a few of my NSVs, things other people might not think are important, that have been huge milestones for me.

I have a BMI of 28.1!
Yes that means I am still overweight according to national standards but considering my BMI started at 37.4 less than a year ago...I think that is amazing! My doctor no longer tells me I am obese and I need to lose weight but instead encourages my new 'category' and weightloss. I like her more now!

My body fat is 29.2%!
Once again this means I am still overweight but I started at 51% body fat...I have lost almost half of my body fat. My ultimate body fat percent is 25%. Body fat percent is a better measure of your success than numbers on the scale. I still weigh 185, over weight for my height of 5'7", but my body fat is almost right on.

I ran my first 5k race!
I watched people run on the treadmill or around town and always felt a tinge of jealousy. I loved running in high school but hadn't braved it since gaining weight. I decided to change that. I started slow...running for a few seconds and walking a few minutes. Then I pushed myself to compete a mile under 13 minutes. Then two miles...and finally 3.1. Then I signed up for my first race and finished in 38 minutes. One of my highest accomplishments yet.

I put on a size 10!
Most women strive to be a 5...me I just wanted to fit in the clothes I wore before Scarlett was born. A 10 Jeans and medium top. I started out in an 18 and 2XL! A couple of weeks ago I put on my 10 and medium without any struggle or snugness..I felt amazing!

My collar bone shows now!
Weird right?! But it was one of my goals. I wanted to be able to see my collar bone. I think a slight show of the collar bone is super sexy and I worked hard to get mine out from under all that fat.

My calf muscles are defined!
All my running, and recent weight lifting, have paid off. I have defined calves. Another one of those goals I set...to see my calf muscles. Before I had fat legs with cankles, now I have sexy legs with calves and ankles.

Double chin...no more!
I avoided every camera because I hated my double chin (and my body). I felt I was too young to have a double chin. We went and did a family portrait last weekend and I smiled confidently without the fear of my double chin making an unwanted appearance.

I have my sexy back!
I lost my sexy after my weight gain. I wore baggy clothes to hide my shame and avoided places where I might run into people I knew beforehand. Now I feel sexy in my own skin again, and I'm not afraid to flaunt it. Dustin has ultimately felt the wham! of my returning sexy and he loves it!

We are ready for Moore #2!
Dustin and I want a second baby, but I wanted to wait until I was back at my pre-pregnancy weight from Scarlett (a healthy weight). I am! We have been trying to get pregnant for a while but no luck...so we will just keep practicing until we reach perfect. In reality I would be okay if it didn't happen I reached my goal weight!

And last but not least and needs no explanation ......

I love myself again!

After reading this I hope you will stop looking at your weight loss as just numbers and reevaluate it in terms of NSV moments. Even though you might think.it insignificant I assure you it is not...it is a stepping stone towards a healthier you!


Saturday, December 1, 2012

10 Things You Don't Know About Me


Thought I would share a little about myself...too be more personable. These are a few quirky things about myself you may not know. 

1) I am a 23 year old stay at home mom, in a very happily committed 5 year relationship with Dustin.

2) I have a 4 year old yorkie/chihuhua mix named Indica (yes after the pot flower..not my choosing).

3) I went to school to be a cosmetologist, plan on finishing after the babies go to school.

4) We are trying for Moore number 2 (no such luck...I am not ovulating because of my weight loss)...but I would really like to reach my goal weight first. Hoping for a boy!

5) I am allergic to raspberries.

6) I hate wearing tennis shoes...I am a Florida girl and I love my flip flops!

7) My daughter Scarlett Rose..has red hair..and we named her before we knew what she looked like.

8) I am in love with Kenny Chesney and Tim Tebow...and Dustin knows this.

9) I have a fear of bed sheets...they make me feel claustrophobic. We do not have any on our bed.

10) My favorite joke is as follows:
          There are two muffins in the oven.
          One muffin turns to the other and say, "Man it is hot in here!"
          The second muffin exclaims, "Holy Sh*t a talking muffin!"
BEST JOKE EVER!



Would love to learn more about you all. Please feel free to share on my page!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Quinoa Pudding Recipe

Oh my goodness. I stumbled across this recipe when looking for a protein to add to dinner tonight. Best thing I have ever done with quinoa. So yummy! I tweaked it to my liking and you can do the same.

Quinoa (cooked original way 1 cup quinoa/2cups water)
3 cups milk- used vanilla almond
3 beaten eggs
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 light brown sugar
1/2 crushed walnuts
1 tspn cinnamon.
1 tspn lemon juice
1 tspn vanilla extract
1/8 tspn salt
1 tbpn butter

After you have cooked and cooled the quinoa mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl. Pour into a greased baking dish and bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until the pudding sets (gets solid). You can also use pudding dishes but I do not have any. Enjoy!

Serves 6 (make servings smaller to lower calorie count but I wanted a lot!)
345 calories
10g protein


One month progress pics!

Here is the difference one month can make. I only had a four pound loss...but weight lifting is starting to change my body!


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

December Goals

Each month I make a list of goals I plan to achieve. By setting monthly and sometimes weekly goals, it has helped me immensely with my weight loss. I though I would share my goals with all of you. Please feel free to share yours here or on my Facebook page: mommyweighless. I will hold you accountable if you need me to!

Mini Goals for everyday:
1. Drink 64 ounces of water everyday.
2. Walk 2 miles everyday. (FitBit to the rescue)
3. Take 30 minutes for mommy.
4. Eat a veggie in place of a fruit (I do not eat a lot of veggies).
5. Eat at least 100g of protein.

Goals for each week:
1. 3 weight lifting sessions (work at personal bests).
2. 3 hours of HIIT.
3. Walk 10+ miles.
4. Lose at least 1/2 pound.
5. Do progress pictures on weigh in day.

Overall Goals:
1. Lose 5 pounds.
2. Move around more.
3. Push on weight training.
4. Up 5k practice to at least 7 miles by end of month.
5. Enjoy the holidays!



My goals are not anything special, but they are something I can look at each day and know if I am on track. By posting them on here I am also making myself accountable to each and every one one of you. Hope that this inspires you to set new challenges and reach new heights!

Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup

My family has all been really sick with a stomach virus..and I thought nothing is better than homemade chicken noodle soup after being sick. I looked at a few recipes, and they were all really high in sodium, so I decided to take a stab at my own. It was so yummy! Dustin took the leftovers to work today! So here you are...

4 cups low sodium chicken broth
4 cups water
3 medium chicken breasts
1 cup diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
1 diced medium yellow onion
1/4 cup dried parsley
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 tbpn dried basil
6-8 ounces of noodle of choice

Place everything but the noodles in the crock pot and cook on low for 5 hours. After 5 hours pull out chicken breast and cut into pieces. Put chicken breast and noodles into crock pot and cook on high for 30-45 minutes. I used a multigrain noodle instead of egg noodles because I was trying to make this as healthy as possible. When noodles are done serve with crackers. Enjoy!



Calories- 295 cup
Protein- 22g
Fat- 2.8g
Sodium- 1131mg (half of other recipes)

Monday, November 26, 2012

FitBit Zip Review

I have fallen in love all over again (sorry Dustin I am having an affair with a piece of technology).

On Black Friday we ventured out to have lunch with some friends, and putzed around a few stores. We wandered into the Best Buy and amidst the hectic confusion, I found my way to the fitness area. The Aria Scale is what originally caught my eye, and right beneath it was the FitBit Zip and FitBit One. The Zip was $49 and the One was $99. I looked at the difference between the two to determine which would better suit my needs, and what the price difference is.

The difference between the two is the One has a sleep tracker and stair tracker, where the Zip does not. Personally I sleep great and do not need help with that, and I live in Florida. It is flat. The most stairs I climb are the four going into my parents house when we go to visit. Once I realized that was where the price difference was I decided it was not $50 worthy and went with the cheaper, the Zip.

It has been one of the best purchases I have ever made!

The FitBit Zip is a fitness tracker that records the time, your steps taken, distance traveled, and calories burned. It then takes all of this information and sends it to a wireless sync dongle attached to your computer, and uses said information to help you determine how active you are and recommend a calorie intake. I say again...best purchase ever. I am far less active than I thought and had over calculated my intake, which has in turn slowed my weight loss.

Most calculators had my TDEE at 2400-2600 calories a day...my TDEE according to FitBit is around 2000 a day. Big Difference!

In order to use FitBit you need a device, Internet connection, and you have to set up a FitBit account (which is free). There is also a free app for IPhone and Android phones. Some IPhones can sync the device via bluetooth, but android cannot yet..coming soon according to the website. The Zip stores up to 7 days worth of information so that you do not need to sync everyday, even though it is recommended that you do. If you have a MyFitnessPal, MFP and FitBit work together. Which is fantastic because FitBit adjusts my calories and it shows on MFP meaning I do not have to go between the two all day.

The device itself is tiny and you can place it anywhere, without it being seen. I clip it to the inside of my bra. I purchased the magenta one...I love anything pink. It comes in a variety of colors. It is 1.4 inches by 1.1 inches, and comes with a silicone and metal case/clip. It has a LCD screen that you just tap to go from one stat to the next, but it does not have a back light, which sucks at if you are a night owl. It is supposed to be sweat, rain, and splash proof but not water proof. So keep it dry. It is battery powered and does not require charging. The batteries are supposed to have a life span of 6 months or so, and you can view the battery level on the site.



I am so in love with this product. I hear that the One is better but I am a bit of a tight wad and this was more budget friendly. I have zero complaints. I have been looking into the FitBit family for a while, and it has been one of the best decisions I have made yet. I cannot regard this product any more highly than I have. Hope this persuades someone to buy one..you will not regret it (I do not work for the company fyi).

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Turkey Trot 5k

My wonderful and beautiful friend, Chelsey, and I did the Turkey Trot 5k at the local YMCA this morning. This was her first 5k and I am so excited to share the wonderful experience we got to share. I am so proud of her, she did incredible and persevered even though she was having terrible chin splints and ankle pain.

The race started at 7:30, and we got there just before 7:00. The registration process was moving smoothly, especially considering there was at least 1500 people. We ran in, got our bibs (her first ever!), and went out for pictures! The course was a beautiful one that cut through a very scenic neighborhood, and was very clearly marked. It was a paved course which is much easier than the dirt, especially for a first timer. During the race I came across a full baby bottle, sprinted and caught up to the owner, and returned it. Funny little thing that I came across, and thought I would share. Crazy things can be seen and can happen in a race.
 START PHOTO

 FINISH PHOTO


Chelsey hasn't really had any time to condition, so she was a true race virgin, and a real trooper. We walked but she pushed and we ran the last 10th of the third mile. We completed in 62 minutes, which is great for her first time! And gives her something to work towards. I have another race next weekend and she is willing to participate in it as well! Yay! I think I will really push her and see if we can run a half mile of it...I see a challenge!

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving, and remember that even though it is the holidays it is no excuse to neglect healthy eating and exercise. By all means enjoy yourself, but stay on the wagon! I am so thankful for my beautiful family, wonderful friends, comfortable life, and health! Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

First Time Squatting

So yesterday my girlfriend, Chelsey, and I decided to do legs..for real. Not just play with the machines(still did machines though)...but use real weights...free weights! I remember squatting in high school, but that was 5 years ago, and I only did it for one semester because I broke my foot. I have been apprehensive about lifting heavy because I have plantar facisitis, and it likes to flare up when I do heavy lifting.

Anyways, we wandered into the free weight area and looked around like we were a little lost, because we were...and finally settled on the right equipment.
           A little Chelsey history, she was a great weight lifter in high school, competed and everything, so she had an idea where we should be and how we should do it. She is getting married in February...yay!...and is trying to lose some weight before then. She has become my workout buddy, and flunky. And she is doing great!
Back to our session...

We set up with just the bar to start...45 pounds. I went first and she spotted. I have my form down just from free squats using body weight(no longer feel I get anything from them), and adding weight felt really good. After she did her set we added 20 pounds..10 on each side..making it 65 pounds total. Did my set and started to feel it in my inner thighs..more than I have ever felt using the machines. Chelsey did her set...and we added 5 pounds...making it 70 total. I really felt it then...and knew that I had reached my max for the day. I have learned that when I want to do legs...I really need to avoid the treadmill beforehand (did a 5k on 10% incline).

Have to mention here that Chelsey really kicked butt!



We did a few other things...but I was more excited about the squats. It was my first time and I wanted to share! I am sore today..but no more sore than usual..except when I have to use the restroom. Ouch! If you are scared of weight lifting like I was, there is not reason for it..once I did I fell in love! Besides it makes you leaner and more sexy..not to mention I felt like a badass!

I am doing a 5k everyday this week on top of my weight workouts because I am participating in a Virtual 5k, hosted by CrazySexyFitt...you should check it out. It is free and anyone can participate. She has wonderful prizes!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Dealing With Non-Supportive People

I have mentioned before that I am from the south and down here we deep fry EVERYTHING! That being said, I also happen to come from a very obese family, and was just like them up until this past year. This started as my New Years Resolution, and it has now become my life. One of my biggest obstacles while changing my life, was learning to deal with my unchanging family. They have been stuck in their ways for a lifetime, and have no intention of changing.

When I started they told me I would not do it or I could not do it, which just made me push even harder to prove them wrong. Then once I began, so did the jokes. When I would pack in my own meals, I was accused of thinking I was better than them. When I would say I could not do something because I was working out, or running a race, I was accused of taking this too serious. They constantly crack jokes about my eating habits and say things like I am starving my family, depriving my daughter of good food (junk food), or denying myself what I really want. I do not deny myself anything, I eat what I want in moderation. As time has progressed I do not crave sweets and do not want junk, I want fruit and veggies. When I feel grumpy I would rather go for a run or pump some iron than sit around eating and feeling sorry for myself.

I also find it very irritating that when I am not around they sneak Scarlett food and things I do not allow her to have. On Halloween she was given a ton of candy and soda (never had) and that night ended up with a horrible diaper rash and belly ache. I think the junk they gave her did more harm in one night, than any of the healthy food could do in a lifetime. I do NOT MAKE MY FAMILY DIET, we eat healthy and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Since when does being healthy qualify as dieting. The only reason I continue to lose weight is not because I diet but because I eat right and my body is doing what it is supposed to.

Now that I have lost nearly 50 pounds the 'You are getting too skinny' talk has started. I am 188 pounds, still 30 pounds over weight for my height. I would like to lose those last 30 pounds. I am not even near skinny, but anything under 200 pounds is 'skinny' to them. Sad. But true. My parents think I am taking this too far, as well as forming an Eating Disorder. I have a very healthy relationship with food...I love it too much sometimes. And in reality I have not gone far enough, I still have a ways to go, but I am so proud of how far I have come.

Slowly the picking and headaches have subsided. I either tune them out or they have realized they are not going to change my mind. This is my lifestyle, I have to live it not them, just as they have to live with theirs, and the health issues that come along with it. With the holidays here, I am a little anxious that it will only get worse. All I can do is hope that someday they will realize how badly they need to change their lifestyle and make healthier changes. If you are dealing with similar issues all I can do is offer you this piece of advice, stick to your guns and prove them wrong! I know you can do this, and I have your back!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Building Endurance

The worst part about starting exercise after a couple of years not doing any..was my inability to go for very long. I lacked endurance and stamina. I still am not where I want to be when it comes to both. And while you may think they are the same they are not..at least not to me anyways. When I think endurance I think of the ability to push through things, especially pain, and finishing what you start. When I think stamina I think of the ability to go harder for longer. But some people categorize them as one and the same.

When I went to the gym for the first time, at 220+ pounds, I could only walk on the treadmill for 12 minutes before the shin splints got so unbearable I thought I was going to break my leg. That is to be expected for someone that is obese. You muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons, everything that makes you move is under a tremendous amount of pressure. Their way of fighting back is to cause pain and make you stop. But you have to endure and push yourself to go further. Every time I went back to the gym I made myself, regardless of how much I wanted to stop, or how much it hurt, walk a little further on that blasted treadmill. Today I can run for 20 minutes straight at a 5-7 mph pace on a 2%incline, but as far as walking...that I can do for 60-100 minutes on a 10% at a 3.5-3.8 mph pace! Imagine after only 11 months, I have improved that much. And even still today I challenge myself to go to further lengths. I couldn't run for more than 15 seconds less than 4 months ago, and I completed my first 5k in 38:17! I slowed down long enough to catch my breath, but kept going.



Building that ability to keep going is where my stamina comes into play. By training my body to last longer I can push myself in more demanding sports. I have a goal to run a half marathon by May of 2013. The only way I will be able to do that is to challenge my ability to run for longer distances. While a 5k might seem like a lot now, I plan on it looking like an inch worm in a few weeks. On Monday I did 5.5 miles in 55  minutes on an 8% incline. Had I done it on say a 2% incline, it would have taken less time. A half marathon is just over 11 miles. If I am at 5.5 now, I will be at 11 in no time. It is all about your mental as well as physical ability to challenge your body. If you don't challenge it you will never know what it is capable of.

So don't sit there and let the idea of exercise intimidate you, you are only hurting yourself if you don't do it. Start small, walk from your house to the mail box as fast as you can, and build your endurance. Then when you feel like you can endure the pain a little longer, go for it. I know if I can do it so can you, the only person holding you back from your fitness goals is you!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Chicken Taco Soup

Found this recipe online and tweaked it to be lower calorie, and family friendly. It is so delicious! Scarlett inhaled her bowl, so even your kids will love it! This is a slow cooker recipe.

3 6 to 8 Oz chicken breast(boneless skinless)
1 can chilli beans
1 can whole kernel corn (drained)
1 can tomato sauce
2 cans diced tomatoes
1 12 Oz beer
1 package of taco seasoning

In crock pot mix chilli beans, corn, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, beer and taco seasoning well. Place chicken breast on top and push down lightly until covered by mix. Cook on low for 5 hours. Remove chicken, allow to cool and shred. Then mix the shredded chicken back into the crock and cook an additional 2 hours. Serve and enjoy.

Makes 8 (1 3/4 cups) servings
245 calories
26 grams protein

I also added 2 tablespoons of sour cream, and 1/4 cup shredded cheese. Totaled
360 calories and was super yum! Also dipped a few veggie chips in it!

Enjoy!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Convincing Myself To Take A Day Off

The biggest thing you will hear from people about exercise is to start slow, and take a day off every now and then. They call that day off a 'rest day', a time for your body to heal and recuperate from all of the extra demands you have put on it, and allow muscles some time to heal. When you exercise, especially lifting weights, you get micro tears in your muscles, and in order for those to heal and make bigger muscles you must let them rest. Lifting heavy repetitively and causing micro tears on top of micro tears is what allows body builders to continue to get bulkier, and that is why they lift around the clock it seems.
 
However if you are not looking to body build or gain muscle quickly, you need to have a recovery period.
 
I have a super duper hard time doing this!!!
 
I know in my head that I need to rest, my body will be screaming for it, but my conscience won't shut up and let me think it is okay. I have worked so hard and so long to get as far as I have, that I have this unrealistic fear that if I take a day off every now and then, I will set myself back. I know that this is irrational, and one day of not working out will not hinder a years worth of work, but I can't help but feel guilty if I take a rest day.
 
 
 
Today is my rest day, as well as my high calorie shock day(I eat at TDEE one day a week to trick my metabolism). And I fought myself all morning not to go for a run, call it runners anguish if you will. And my body has been through a lot the past couple of weeks, so I know I was well over due for a day off, but I had to force myself to stay in bed this morning. I told myself over and over IT IS OKAY TO TAKE THE DAY OFF, YOU WILL NOT SET YOURSELF BACK.
 
Now that I feel okay with not working out (even though I don't)...I have a wonderful and very serious heart pounding round of 'monopoly' with Dustin. I would have to say we tied! So I convince myself I had a decent enough workout and justify my day off!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Free For All 5k

Did my second 5k today(November 10, 2012). That is 2 in two Weeks! Woohoo!
It was at another nature park, but this time the path was paved, and much easier to run. Only complaint was having to dodge doggy poo because people were allowed to bring dogs, and none of them picked up after their pets! So rude and inconsiderate!

This was a much smaller group this time, probably only about 100 competitors. So I figured I had a good chance of winning because it was being done by age groups. Sadly I did not win a medal by 34 seconds but I am proud of myself either way!

Even though it was a paved path, I was slower today by a minute, my time was 40:22, but I also did not get enough sleep this week. Sleep is so super important when you are an avid runner, it provides your muscles with the time they need for repair.

During the race I kind of fell behind due to a cramp in a thigh muscle I bruised really bad when I walked into the corner of a cabinet, but as I started to catch up I would find a person in the crowd, put them on my radar, and make a challenge for myself to pass them. It's amazing what you can do when you give yourself mini challenges. And when I reached the 3 mile mark, like I always do, I sprinted to the finish. I don't have my start and finish photos yet, but as  soon as I do I will edit them in.

I had a blast and it was for a good cause. All the money was being raised to provide a free concert within my local community, to give kids something to do so they are not on the streets. That is something I am totally willing to support.

I also received my first ever t-shirt from a race and my second bib! Yay me! I have officially started my drawer for race tees and a folder for my bibs. How awesome is that? If you are new to racing too, I recommend you do the same. I write the date, name of the race, and my time on it. That way I can look back one day and see my improvements and cherish those moments!

Next race for me is November 22, The Turkey Trot!


Thursday, November 8, 2012

Very First 5k

On Saturday November 3, 2012 I ran my first ever 5k RACE!

Okay, I'm being all dramatic with the bold print, but I have never been so proud of myself! I always though I would like to be a runner, but always thought I would never be able to do it. Well one of my goals during this journey has been becoming a runner. To me a runner is someone who runs in whatever weather, runs to run, runs to renew their attitude, runs to breathe, and you are a runner no matter what pace. If you are going faster than your fastest walking pace, you are a runner in my book!

I love that free feeling I have when I run...that one where the only thing that matters is the constant pitter patter of your feet on the ground and the wind whipping around your face. I do my best thinking, thought sorting, and anger relieving when I run as well! Poor Dustin has learned this the hard way...Mommy needs her daily run!

Anyways, enough banter. On to my first 5k.

I happened onto this 5k: The Paynes Prairie 5k-Benefiting the Friends of Paynes Prairie, by accident. A Facebook friend of mine shared it and I jumped on in. It was a race where the proceeds were going to local benefits for local groups..and I love supporting my community! When I registered I realized I only had 6 weeks to train, but was determined to do it. I walk anywhere from 2-5 miles a day, and I decided to start pushing myself to run parts of it.

The first week I could only run for a minute or two, and had to walk five to catch my breath. I was getting side stitches, and my feet started blistering. So I did a little research *cues Google love song* in to what I could do for all of the above. As it turns out when you are running distance the best thing you can do is run on an almost empty stomach, so have a banana or something light 30 minutes before. Be sure you are plenty hydrated. And dig deep and push! As far as the blisters, that is just a perk of running! I have grown to love them. They are a part of my new life style, and I get a new one each week.

I began pushing myself a little more each day. I literally ran/walked a 5k everyday of the week for six weeks. And it paid off. When I started it took me 58 minutes.

Back to the 5k. I was so excited and nervous. I have never ran and actual race before. I had all of the usual fat girl issues, and assumed everyone else would be stick thin, and wonder why I was there. I could not have been more wrong. There were people of every shape and size, and we were all there for the same reasons; to compete, to have fun, and to support a good cause.

Registration was easy. Walked in, filled out a paper, was given my bib, and instructed where the starting line was. By the way, if it is fall, and you arrive for a race at 7:00 in the morning wear warm gear. I like to froze before we got running. I have saved my bib to be scrap booked.



A few seconds before the start, when we were all waiting on the horn, I glanced down at my heart rate monitor, my heart was going 146 beats per minute I was so anxious to get going. Next thing I know we are all running! Made my personal best of 38:17! And I really got into the competitive spirit. I passed whomever I could whenever I could! I almost got beat by a lady that I had played back and forth with, but I sprinted the last tenth of a mile, and beat her!

 START

 FINISH


Hoo-Rah!

It was amazing, and so much fun. It was so great, I came home and made up a schedule of all the 5ks local for the next six months I am going to participate in. By next summer I am going to reach for my next goal...a half marathon! I know I will do it!




Sunday, November 4, 2012

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Have I said how much I love this time of year, you can make almost pumpkin anything, and I love pumpkin! So I decided to take a swing at my own pumpkin pie smoothie! So here you go, and it is yummy! Even Scarlett and Dustin liked it..

1 can of Libby's Pumpkin Puree
1 can Carnation Swetened Condensed Milk(chilled)
6 Oz of vanilla yogurt
1/4 cup of stevia(or sweetener of choice)
1/4 tspn nutmeg/ cinnamon/ pumpkin pie spice

Mix all together in blender and blender until smooth and creamy! Then enjoy!

8 Oz serving and makes 4 servings
99 calories/9 g of protein


Monday, October 29, 2012

Count The Small Things

When I started this journey I was stepping on the scale at least 10 times a day..no joke. If I walked by it, I felt a compulsive need to step on it. And everytime the numbers were different. I learned as I worked through this that weight flucuates constantly, and is never the same. You weight can fluctuate 3-7 pounds depending on what you have eaten, water retention, salt intake, full bladder, you name it and it can affect your weight, I am sure of it. It is physically impossible to gain 3-5 pounds a day. You would have to eat a surplus of 10,000+ calories. The average adult female should only eat around 1500-2000 and the male 1600-2500(all dependent of weight).

After I stopped freaking out over the numbers jumping around all the time, I started to learn that measurements and NSV or non scale victories (for my MFP friends) are far more important. While your weight may not be changing you body percent may be. When I started in January I had a body fat percentage of 49%! Today my body fat percentage is 38%...I have lost over 10% body fat in as little as 10 months...but I have only lost 40 pounds. It doesn't seem like a lot but a good body fat percentage for a woman is 25-31%...and that ultimately means I only need to lose 7% more to be in the healthy range!

I would rather have a healthy body fat percent then be at a low weight anyday. And the slower you lose the fat, the healthier you are because you won't be losing lean body mass(the important stuff like muscles). My goal body fat percent is 28% so I only have 10% more to go until goal! Now that I am strength training my body fat will continue to go down and more quickly. Weight training is very important for maintaining lean body mass.

Another great thing to do is measurements! You should measure your neck, waist, hips, thighs once every 2 weeks to once a month. I have been at the same weight for almost 6 weeks now but I continue to lose inches, a NSV! This is another sign that you are losing fat. You might not see it, but seeing that measureing tape go in is solid proof that your hard work is paying off.

When I started these were my stats:
Neck- 17 inches
Waist- 39 inches
Hips- 47 inches

Here they are for last week:
Neck- 13.5 inches
Waist- 33 inches
Hips- 44 inches

That means I have lost 3.5 inches on my neck, 6 inches on my waist, and 3 inches on my hips! I have gone from a size 18W pants to a 10R, and a 2X shirt to a M ..amazing when I think of it in those terms. And I still have a ways to go!

I hope this helps you look at your weight loss journey as more than just a number on the scale..because it really is! I know if I can do it so can you!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Eating More To Weigh Less

Sounds terrifying right?! It really is...but if you read this and think at the end you could do it...then there is no reason to be scared. The first time I read a forum titled "Eat More To Weigh Less" I thought pfffffftt...whatever, everyone knows you have to eat low calorie to lose weight..right??? I looked at it, laughed literally out loud, and went back to my low calories. I lost my first 25 pounds this way and I figured I would lose the last 50 the same.Then one month came the dreaded PLATEAU! *gasps echo through inter-world*

I tried everything, I doubled my exercise, stopped eating back my exercise calories, and not a single pound budged. So after doing a little reading I realized that I was under eating  This made me rethink eating more to weigh less. I revisited the forum. And I read a lot of forum posts where they had been in the exact same situation as me, eating low cal with no more weight loss. They then later went on to say after eating more they began to lose again. I read everything I could on this weight loss principle and decided I was going to do the calculations, find out what my true intake should be and try eating at that for 4-6 weeks and see what happen.

To figure out what your intake needs to be you need to find your BMR, TDEE and then subtract 20% from your TDEE. I have provided a link to great calculators as well as a link to my post about finding your calories intake.

I have been eating more to weigh less for about 6 weeks now and I feel amazing! I have a ton more energy, my hair has stopped falling out, I am not cranky anymore (poor Dustin), and I can go like crazy at the gym! I used to poop out within the first 30 minutes of my workouts, but now I can go high intensity for 80 minutes and still feel good the rest of the day. I have been losing a steady 1-2 pounds a week and I look twice as toned as I did. I look leaner, which is better than being skinny. I will take lean and strong over skinny any day. There is a fantastic group on MyFitnessPal for eat more to weigh less that has people going through the transformation with you. They break it down where it is easier to understand and how it works. They also have a Facebook page and personal web page. Check them out if you don't like starving your way to fit!

Proof in the pudding!


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Rykas Sneakers Review

I went on vacation in June to the Outer Banks in North Carolina, and it was beautiful! I kept busy with my exercise even while there, because it was so nice outside,  I couldn't help but run. My poor old Adidas gave out...and I needed new shoes. My grandma and I took off to check out the local shopping, and the shops there were wonderful. We came across a shoe store that was having a BOGO half off sale, and what is better than a sale...nothing?!

This was the first time I ever put thought into my shoes, before I just bought a pair, and they lasted forever because I did not exercise(plus I am a flipflop girl..hello I live in the Sunshine State). This time I went to asking questions and doing a little research. I needed good quality shoes (not WalMart cheapness) , that could endure walking, running, and weight training. It is very hard to get all of these qualities in shoes. Most are either or and not in between.

I was eyeballing a pair of Nike's that were reasonably priced and were meant for distance. They were really light which was a selling point for me, I don't like running in clod hoppers, but something in my gut said they weren't what I was looking for. I always go with my gut. I ask one of the employees and she brought me to the Rykas.

There was an elderly lady standing there that told me her chiropractor had recommended them to her a couple years back, and she hasn't worn anything since. She said her aches and pains had lessened and she did a lot of walking without any problems. I figured I would do a quick Google search and found nothing but great reviews..why had I never heard of them before now???

What a heaven sent shoe! They are great! These shoes are designed specifically for women, I bought the Skylar which are for beginners or experts. They build shoes that are developed specifically to womens forms..."Ryka knows that a woman’s foot shape, muscle movement and skeletal structure are all inherently different from a man’s. The “Q-angle”(quadricep angle) – the anatomical relationship between the hip and knee – measures 5–7 degrees greater for women than men. As a result, women tend to shift more weight to the outside of their feet which leads to over-pronation, instability at foot strike and higher risk of injury. All Ryka sneakers, including Ryka walking shoes, are designed and developed taking into account a woman’s unique fit needs."



These are the most comfortable shoes I have ever owned. Granted they are not the prettiest shoes, or most female looking but I have no back pain, no leg pain, no hip pain, and most importantly they are light weight and durable. I run and walk around 15-20 miles a week, and I have had these shoes since June, and they are just now starting to break down, that's 5 months, and I only paid $25 with the sale prices! I recommend them to everyone that asks about good shoes. On the website they are reasonably priced and there are many choices! Check them out!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Banana Nut Bread Recipe

Tried this great recipe..and it is only 199 calories a slice. After I made it I took it this morning and made it into french toast..divine! Had to share!

Ingredients:
3 bananas(mashed)
1/4 cup butter
1 cup sugar (or sugar alternative)
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tspn baking soda
1 tspn nutmeg
1/ cup crushed walnuts

Cream the butter and sugar together in a big bowl. In another bowl sift together the flour, nutmeg, and baking soda. Beat the eggs and add to the creamed butter and sugar. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients. Add in the walnuts. Pour into a well greased loaf pan and bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.

When the bread is done and cooled slice into 12 even slices. To make the french toast with it you will need 3 beaten eggs. You don't need milk because the bread is moist enough. Dip the bread in the beaten eggs and cook on non stick skillet at medium to high heat until brown on each side. Serve with butter and syrup.



Enjoy y'all!

Tropical Strawberry Shakeology Review

Okay my friends, I tried the vegan tropical strawberry shakeology after finding I want the biggest fan of the super food chocolate version, and I liked it even less. I have provided a link to the website again. You can check it out for yourself, and contact a Beachbody agent if you want to sample it. I tried a different way of mixing it. I will share the recipe I used as well as my pros and cons again.

I reiterate that this is not a review of their weight loss program, just a sample of the shakes they sell. I am also not trying to start a debate over whether shakeology is good or bad. If it works for you great, if not that is fine too!

VeganTropicalStrawberry Mix: in blender cup
12 ounces water
1 pack of vegan mix
1 cup of blended ice



Here is my list of pros:
-It did not stick the the side if my cup like the chocolate did
-Didn't have to dirty the blender
-Convenient breakfast for in the go

And my list of cons:
-It tasted AWFUL
-It was very chalky and gritty
-Only managed to drink 2 ounces

This list is a lot shorter than my chocolate list, simply because I really did not like it. This is my personal opinion and not a reflection of Beachbody itself, please remember that. I also do not think that it is worth the asking price, when I can buy strawberries, pineapple, mangos, bananas, and make my own natural shake that is smooth and yummy. Sorry if anyone is offended.

On another note I had the second chocolate shakeology mix last night for dinner, thought I would give it one more shot. I mixed it in a shaker cup this time with ice, 8 ounces of unsweetened almond milk, 4 ounces of water, and blended ice. I still felt it was chalky, and it gave my horrendous heartburn again. It does taste good though. Still not for me.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Shakeology Review

So a couple of weeks ago I was the winner of a fabulous giveaway on a fitness page! I was thrilled and anxious to test out everything I won. Inside the package was three packets of shakeology, a meal replacement shake that is supposed to be all natural. I have provided a link to their site. Check them out for yourself. There was 2 chocolate and 1 strawberry.



Today I decided to give it a go and have a chocolate shake for breakfast.

How I mixed it(in a blender):
1 pack of chocolate shakeology
1 cup of ice
1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
half a banana

This is not a review of their program and weight loss promises because I have not completed the program, and don't really plan to. I know people that have had success with it but I prefer to eat my calories, and they are over priced for my budget. This is a review of the actual shake I had and what  I thought. I also am not trying to start a debate over the product. If you use it and have had results that is great! If you are totally against it that is great too! However I am not pushing nor slamming the product.

So for the pros:
-It had a good strong chocolate flavor, which I enjoy. I also haven't had any cravings for sweets today, so it has curbed my sweet tooth. That is always a plus.
-It was nice a thick so it gave me a sense of getting more than just a drink of something, kind of made me feel like I was getting sustenance.
-I drank it at 9:00a.m. and did not feel hungry again until 1:00p.m. so it does keep you full.
-It has a lot of protein so I didn't need a protein shake after my workout.
-It definitely got my digestive system moving.
-And the last perk would have to be the convenience of just throwing it in the blender, drinking it down, and walking out the door.

And now the cons:
-I prefer to eat my calories, and while it kept me full,  I wanted something to chew on for the sake of chewing.
-While it was thick and yummy, I feel like over half of it stuck to the sides of the blender. So did I really get all the nutrition it promised? Then even more stuck to the side if my glass. Seemed like a serious waste, especially considering what people pay.
-It was a little chalky, which you get with any shake.
-It gave me awful heartburn. I have burped the taste of it all day.
-While it did get my digestive system going, I would prefer if my food stayed in me until I am at least done with my workout! Yikes!
- It had quite a bit of sugar in it, 6 grams to be exact, and I don't like so much sugar in a drink. I only drink water and unsweetened almond milk, so sweet drinks aren't my thing.
-And the last con is the fact that it is so expensive. No I didn't have to buy it but if I was going to, I couldn't afford it.

My lists were fairly even, but in the end in my opinion I wasn't really a fan. It did taste good, and for some people it works great. I say whatever works for you and helps you lose weight so long as it is a part of  a healthy balanced diet, go for it, but I don't think after my samples are used I will ever use it again. Not my cup of tea. However if you are interested in trying it you should contact a shakeology agent, and give it a go for yourself.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Strawberry Pie

This is delectable and only 215 calories a slice (8 slices total)! First I will share my crust recipe then the strawberry filling recipe.

Flaky Crust

Preheat oven to 400°
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 tspns sugar
1 tspn salt
2 tbspn milk
1/2 cup veggie oil

Place all ingredients in a 9 inch pie pan and mix with a fork. Pat it to the bottom and around the edges. Poke with holes and bake for 15 minutes or until light brown. Set aside to cool.

Strawberry Filling

3 pints fresh or frozen strawberries(cut in halves)
3/4 cup of sugar (can use alternatives)
2 tbspn corn starch
1/2 cup of water

In a medium sauce pan heat 1 pint cut strawberries and sugar over medium high heat. Mush the strawberries with the back of a spoon as they cook down to release juice and flavor. Mix the corn starch and water and put into the strawberry mix when it is thick and syrupy. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside and let it cool completely. Once it has cooled put into pie shell and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Serve cold with whipped topping.

This is a sweet dessert and it will taste like it is full of naughtiness..but it isn't horrible. Enjoy y'all!


Monday, October 15, 2012

My 10 Rules For Gym Time

Everyone that goes to the gym gets annoyed at one point or another by fellow members. Whether they are talking too much, smell too bad, or just starting at you there are things I just can't stand. Here are 10 rules I think everyone should follow while at the gym:

1) Do not judge others or talk about other people.
         This is most important to me because everyone is there to get healthier and judging them or criticizing them for that sets them back. I was at the gym one day and a younger (fitter) couple was bad mouthing a heavier girl for running on the treadmill. They were being rude and loud enough i could hear them over my head phones, which meant she could hear them, and so could everyone else. My heart hurt for her because that was me 9 months ago. After asking them politely to stop, and them refusing, myself and another man went to the desk and reported them. They were told to stop and if it persisted their membership would be revoked. She came to us and thanked us, and I work out with her now when I can. It is not our place to pass judgment on others, instead we should praise each other for bring there.
If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all.

2) Please wear deodorant.
          I understand it is hot, we are sweaty, and working hard, but that is no excuse for stinking. If I can smell you, I know you can smell you. There is nothing embarrassing about needing to stop and refresh. In reality that just goes to show how hard you are working.
Smelling bad = no good.

3) Clean the equipment after you use it.
          There is nothing more gross than getting on a piece of equipment and someone left a sweaty butt print or hand prints. I don't like my own sweat on the machine, let alone another persons. They have towels and spray for a reason. To keep down bacteria and to help maintain equipment.
Keep your germs to yourself.

4) If you see my headphones, I don't want to chit chat.
          I don't mind working out with friends, sometimes I enjoy the company, however if I am alone, with headphones on full blast...I am in Beast Mode! Every time you stop me to say something, you interrupt beast mode, and it really annoys me. People don't put in headphones because they want to talk.
Music is my quiet time.

5) Perfume, Cologne, and makeup are not necessary.
          Ladies you do not need to bathe in perfume, or pile on the makeup to go to the gym and sweat. If you look cute while working out you aren't working hard enough. And I shouldn't have to hold my breath when I walk by for fear of choking to death on your perfume. Put that shit on after you workout and are leaving the gym. Same for you fellas..I'm not looking for a mate when I come to the gym. You don't have to wear a bottle of axe. They only do that in the commercial to market the product. Women don't want to smell that. If you are coming to the gym to impress the opposite sex and find a date, do it else where, some if us are there to work.
Keep sexy at the bars.

6) Don't stare
          I don't know how many times I look up in the mirror and someone is staring at me. Okay I get it, I look rough after an got of cardio, or maybe my boobs are bouncing to kingdom come, but staring is rude. Not to mention it makes others uncomfortable and self conscience. The mirrors are there to help you watch your form..not everyone else.
Keep your eyes on your own set.

7) Don't be afraid to ask for assistance.
          A lot of the equipment at the gym is dangerous and can severely injure you if not used properly  if you are a Newby ask an employee to give you a tour and demonstrate how things work. Do not lift heavy without a spotter. I cannot stress to you enough how important  learning the equipment before use is. If you twist wrong on an ab machine you can hurry your back, if you don't know how to get on the treadmill or change the settings properly you could face plant. Then you are out of the game until you heal.
Don't use what you don't understand.

8) The gym isn't a restaurant
          I see people eating all the time at the gym. I understand if you need a quick energy bar, or some carbs for fuel, but standing in front if the water fountain grazing is ridiculous. If you need to eat, there are picnic tables and chairs for a reason. I would like to get to the fountain for a drink.
Grazing is for cows not the gym.

9) Get your shower and get out
          I cannot stand it when the showers are packed and someone is taking their sweet time and sudsing up like they are going it for Miss America. Save your beauty routine for home. Wash the sweat it if your hair, off your skin and move on.
We don't have all day either. If you have engagements after you should account for that one your time somewhere else, not expect everyone else to wait for you.
This is like a car wash, get clean and pull through.

10) Be courteous
         There are a lot of people from a lot of different cultures at the gym. Don't say rude or racial things. Don't use one piece of equipment for hours. Don't take forever in the shower. Common courtesy is important to keep things going smoothly and no one likes a jerk.
Be nice and let's all get it done.

I know some people well read this and think I am out of my mind, or really agree. But these are things I think should be rules for every gym goer. Its a matter of personal opinion and I know we all have things that peeve us, these are mine. Now go get your sweat on, on you that is, not the equipment.


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Cruelty Among Our Youth

Okay my dears this is not weight loss related, but something you may have experienced because of your weight and something I feel the need to get out there. I read an article today about a young girl, Amanda Todd, that committed suicide after enduring years of cyber and physical bullying. This girl was victimized for making one mistake, flashing her chest to a pedophile, and it lead to torment. I have linked the article so you can see all the details for yourself.

What is wrong with youth today?! Since when is it acceptable to bully people to the point that it ruins their lives. I do not understand this mind set of cruelty that children have now. Are they so desensitized by television and video games, that they do not realize how cruel they are? Or is it simply a lack of parenting? What will become of these children when they are adults? I honestly don't see then amounting to more than criminals and thugs.

Since when do boys go around sleeping with girls just so their girlfriend can beat her up? What kind of stupid girl would want to be with a guy like that, and what kind of guy would want a girl like that? Where are their morals, self respect or sense of respect in general? I just can't wrap my head around any of it. And since when does no one stand up for someone else? When I was a child you stood up for the bullied children, and bullies were lame.

These kids want so bad to act grown, but I don't know any adults that act like that. Sure there are the occasional jerks that are adults but usually they are just miserable in life. Is that the problem with kids, is their life of cell phones, IPads, laptops, cars...so miserable and boring that their only source of entertainment is to drive others to commit suicide? And once they do, crack jokes about it. Suicide and bullying is no joke..because in an instant it could be you.

It breaks my heart and scares the life out of me to think these kids are our future, and one that my daughter will be part of. There needs to be severe punishment for kids caught bullying be it cyber or in person. Start making examples of these that bullied this young girl. She hadn't even had a chance at life yet. Its just sad. What kind of monster would push a young girl to that length, and still make fun of her, or bully her after she is dead. Is there no respect for the dead anymore either?

Shame on you that bully, and shame on us for not doing anything to prevent it!


Friday, October 12, 2012

Peanut Butter Chocolate Protein Bar

To buy a protein bar in the store you are going to pay. I decided to attempt baking my own and what a great idea it was! so yummy that even Scarlett loved it! So here you go...

1/2 cup of instant oats
2 scoops of vanilla whey powder (or your choice of powder)
2 tbspn of unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup stevia or artificial sweetener
2 tspn of cinnamon
1 tbspn of flax meal
2 tbspn creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup shredded coconut(personal choice)
1/4 cup walnuts(personal choice)
1/2 cup of milk of choice (I prefer unsweetened almond)

Mix all the dry ingredients in a separate bowl(oats, powder, cocoa, sugar, cinnamon, flax, nuts, and coconut). Mix wet ingredients in another bowl(peanut butter, and milk). Mix the two until thick. Place on non stick pan in rectangle shape about 2 inches by 3 inches. Should make about 8 servings. Bake at 360 for 15 minutes, or until fluffy.

Allow to cool and pack in individual bags four an on the go protein filed snack! They are around 240 calories with 28g of protein! Enjoy!


Thursday, October 11, 2012

Who Am I...

I have been blogging for a few weeks now and other than snippets here and there..none of y'all have any idea who I am..or how I got here. I shall change this tonight.

I am a country girl, farm raised and taught to eat everything deep fried with batter. It is southern tradition, and so is having a big behind. I come from a very close and loving family of parents that have been marries almost 30 YEARS..with two older sisters that are my best friends. My Mom and Dad raised us right, and whooped our asses when it was necessary. And we are all productive citizens even though they did so. We woke up at the crack of dawn to tend the animals, get to school, come home, tend more animals, do our homework, hit the hay, and start all over again. This structure has been a defining feature of this journey. I can create a schedule and stick with it as well as having the self discipline to maintain it.

I met the love of my life in high school..yes I know cliche right? He is a great man, hardworking, and makes us a decent living. We have one beautiful daughter, and once I reach my weight goal we plan on having a boy if possible. We live on a little farm in what many deem the middle of no where, but it is home and it is ours. We are not married yet, but it is in our future. I am about to begin school to become a health care administrator..I want to take my fitness journey to the next level..without the ooey gooey part.

The reason behind my life style change was being titled 'obese'...traumatizing for anyone I know. But it was the inspiration and motivation that changed my life forever. I have since lost over 40 pounds..still losing with only 16 pounds until my goal weight. It has been 10 long months of eating healthy, making mistakes, and dedication to working out. No one said that this would be easy, but I know from experience it is more than worth it!



I am an open book and more than willing to share any part of my life with anyone. I have nothing to hide..just ask.

Liz

Best Workouts zone

When you start this journey you are going to be bombarded with tons of information about which workout is better for your body, which gives you abs, and which is best for fat loss. In reality the best exercise you can do is one you truly enjoy, and causes your heart rate to go up. Do not allow yourself to become overwhelmed. Experts will never agree which is right but the tried and truest weight loss is achieved using cardio. Cardio burns calories while burning fat.

For the best FAT burn you should work at 70-90% of your maximum heart rate, but to be within the Fitness Zone or Fat Burn Zone you only need to be at about 60-70% of your maximum heart rate.

The difference here is anything above 60% is burning calories and some fat but burning above 70%  guarantees maximum calorie and fat burn. And maximum fat burn is what you want. However if exercise is new to you, do not push for the max. Start slow and build endurance or you risk getting injured or burning out.

Another great method for burning fat is with High Intensity Interval Training, out HIIT. This is a few second of max heart rate followed by a couple of minutes in the Fitness Zone. HIIT is also a great way to help build endurance.

Now while cardio does help lose weight and burn fat it does nothing for getting that 'toned' look. To lose weight while toning you really need to incorporate weight training. And ladies there is no reason to fear weights, you will not bulk up unless you are trying to. By using low weights high reps you tone the muscle and surrounding skin without building the muscle up. You also burn more calories the more muscular you are because muscle burns more calories than fat.

If you gave already built some endurance you should look into circuit training. This is a serious of workouts that include HIIT as well as weights, all in one session. This alloyed for max burn while toning. Great way to tighten up. I highly recommend Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. It has three levels, one being the easiest. I have made it through the first two levels, about to begin three. It is hard, you will sweat, but it is rewarding in the end. She also shows modifications for the more intense moved if you have injuries, out if you just aren't there yet. You can find it cheap online and at most department stores.

And again I reiterate how important it is to hat a great rate monitor that calculates calories burned.

Now go out there, find what you love, and get moving!


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Childhood Obesity Epidemic

Today a friend posted this on her Facebook...

"Ohhh my geese the lady at the jiffy store just bought her already over weight children giant honey buns & Mt. Dew.... Why don't you try giving your kids a nutritional breakfast instead of a pound of sugar!!! & make them play outside every once in awhile!!!"

And instantly people began to agree and then disagree. Of course those that disagreed used the 'its genetics' excuse for being overweight themselves as well as the
Obesity epidemic that is sweeping across our youth. This is a pet peeve of mine because clearly those children were not overweight due to genetics, it is clear they are that way because of poor parenting as well as poor nutritional habits. I don't blame the children one single bit. They are only doing what they are taught and eating what they are fed.

I also have beef with using genetics as an excuse for being overweight! Obesity runs in my family and for a long time I blamed genetics because I was overweight. Then I realized, it wasn't genetics but the poor food choices I was making and the lack of exercise making me fat, which were all things I learned from my family. I learned from childhood to eat deep fried, sugar coated, and starchy everything. I spent much of my childhood overweight and I carried into my adult life. Then I woke up and changed the way I ate, and got moving, and guess what? Suddenly I started to lose weight! So long as we make excuses for the way we look and don't look within ourselves and realize it is out own fault we are overweight, we won't change, we will merely just begin to accept that we are predetermined to be that way. No one is born overweight, we become that way. Stop blaming genetics, and get to the real root of the problem.

Another thing that was mentioned was the 'I eat pretty healthy and I stay overweight'...bull! You can't half-ass eat healthy. Either you are or you aren't. If you were eating healthy food and appropriate portions you would lose weight and slowly get out of that overweight category. That state of mind irritates me. Its just another excuse.

Now I know people will get offended by this but this is being written by someone who was obese, and has worked her butt of to reach a healthy weight and achieve a healthy lifestyle. And I do understand some people have medical conditions such add thyroid issues, but there are thousands people who have lost weight successfully even with health issues. So that isn't a valid excuse either.

America needs to stop making excuses for overweight children, and take the necessary steps to make them healthier.

This concludes my rant for the day.