Monday, October 20, 2014

Back in it

I love the feeling of being back in the game! I feel confident in my decisions and confident that I will reach my goals!

I am glad I was able to turn the corner and get back to making progress. It was soooooo very frustrating when I was jogging every other day, but not upholding the end on nutrition. I was halving it and I knew it, but I simply couldn't motivate myself to make any changes. And nothing anyone said to help was working. It was a conclusion I had to discover. And I did. Finally. Whew!

I wish I could bottle this feeling. It is an I-can-conquer-anything feeling! And I know that when I have it, I own it. It exudes from me and I am sure of myself.

The challenges over the next few days and weeks will be building in the time for exercise. My work-plate is quite full (always is this time of the year-nothing new here) and I must make sure I take an hour for me. To exercise. Putting me first has never been top of mind, but I am realizing, albeit slowly, that when I do, I can take better care of those around me too.

Bring it on, fall! I am ready!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Where am I going?

Whew, it has been a lllloooonnnngggg time since I posted! But no worries, I am now bbaacckk!

I had to take some time and work on me. Not just theorize about me, wonder about me, but actually take physical steps to figure me out. And, for reasons I don't totally understand, I had to do it quietly. I've been very open on this journey, but this time, I had to move differently. So, I took some time off to work on my own goals. And, I am glad I did. I made a LOT of progress. Here's the breakdown: lost 50 pounds and started running. I ran my first 5k on Saturday. I'm pleased.

But here I am and I am stalled. Would it be the worst thing if I stayed stationary? If I never lost another pound, would I be okay? Would I be happy? <------that's the million dollar question! And the answer is, yes, I think so.

And, I gave a qualifier. I think so. I don't know so. Some may say that we never know until we live with it for a while and that is true, to a point. But since I have given myself wiggle-room, I'd better be preparing for if I am not happy here.

So, I was chatting with my health coach Adrienne (and if you want to know more about the program I've been on for my journey, click here and if you want to know more from me, just ask) and she asked me this fairly profound question last week and I've gotta be honest, it has been swirling in my head ever since. I was explaining my predicament with lack of motivation and she said that I have to determine where I am going. When I started my journey, I was running away from being fat. Nothing more. I just knew that I couldn't stay where I was. I felt like I was dying emotionally in that state and needed to be pulled to shore.

Now, I've successfully run from fat-dom. But, what am I running towards? What now will motivate me? I've asked myself the question a million times and was sure I was never going to know the answer.

But then, I had the 5k and I was excited AND terrified at the SAME time. I couldn't believe I was following through on a goal as big as that. I've been promising myself goals like that my whole life and I've been letting myself down my whole life too.

During the race, I had TONS of time to think and here is what I discovered.

I'm not finished. 

The 5k would've been a helluva lot easier were I 30 pounds lighter. I am running towards fitness. I am running towards meeting my goals. And I am running towards not letting ME down.

When I could see the finish line, I started crying. I was doing it. I was meeting my goal. It was an amazing experience and in a couple of weeks, I am going to do it again.

By the way, in case you're interested, I ran further and faster than I ever had in training. I ran a 15 minute mile, which is 2 minutes faster per mile than I had in training. WOOT!

Thanks to all for your support. It means the world.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Unchartered territory

So, I've been a bit off the radar. I had some decisions to make and I had to make them for myself and with myself before I could move forward with my life and especially with sharing it with others.

Most of the time, I am an open book. If I'm thinking it, you can practically read it on my face. If  I am doing something, I'll usually tell you straight out what and why. Most of the time, I have few secrets. Until now.

I have been fairly up front and honest about my desires to get my weight and habits under control by the time I turn 40. Well, it finally hit me that I turn 40 in August. Around mid-October is when I made this startling discovery...not startling, really, but a true OH MY moment.

That moment caused me to do some serious soul searching about me. My motivations, my triggers, my desires and what would allow me to be successful, ultimately. And what I realized is that I needed to play this close to the vest. I needed to keep a secret. For me.

I began my journey November 5th, right before the holidays. In fact, right before Chris and I hosted a pie-swap party at our house. I baked 4 pies and sampled nothing. I told no one, other than Chris. I have the willpower that is amazing when I insist on it. I am focused and with a mission. I must change my life before the next decade begins.

And so, I am working hard. I'm 3 months in and I have lost 35 pounds. I'm amazed really. I can see it and other's are noticing too. It is a weird place to be... I'm learning to say JUST thank-you, as a friend keeps reminding me. I'lm getting great fashion advice and I am loving the changes.

But, I am in unchartered waters. I'm in the last plus size before regular clothes. It feels weird. And I am wondering what I'll look like as the weight falls off. If 35 looks like this, what will 50, 75 or 100 look and feel like?  I am not a good shopper and having an entire store to shop in versus the tiny area allocated to the plus size is intimidating.

I plan to address the fear directly. I know it can and will derail me if I let it. I won't. I keep reminding myself that change is good and that THIS change is excellent. This change is excellent.

This change is excellent.


S

Thursday, October 10, 2013

17 seconds

I've been in Seattle this week and it has been wonderful. In fact, I'm in love with this city. Totally and completely in love.

Traveling out here was nerve wracking as will be traveling home since I get very nervous flying these days. I'm not sure when that happened, but it did and it drives me nuts that I am, but I can't stop it.

I was preparing for the trip by getting a book to read since there are periods on the plane where you cannot use electronic devices. I knew I needed a real book to distract me during this time. 

Years ago when Davis Kidd in Nashville was closing up shop, I picked up several books from numerous sale tables that looked interesting. For this trip I grabbed the 17-second Miracle by Jason Wright.

It was the right book at the right time, for me. Kindof, like I was meant to read it on that day, that trip. It's weird when that happens, right?

It's not a literary giant, let me say, but it does have an easy reading style that can influence your life if you let it.

There were signs throughout the book that were for me. The locations- it is in Charlottesville, Va for much of it and Chris has just returned the week before from Charlottesville and we have been talking about visiting because we have two good friends in the area to visit. It mentioned Seattle. And there were countless other random mentions that spoke to me. But the last one was once we arrived to pur hotel, the Edgewater (amazing by the way), and were having dinner with work colleagues Rebecca and Doug, there was a yellow flower on the table. A single, yellow flower. And that was one of the stories in the book. 

It was all right for me.

And basically, the book is this. It only takes 17 seconds to perform a miracle for someone, to change their life. A kind word, an opened door, a kind story. When we think of 17 seconds, we know it flies by in what seems like a heartbeat, but much can happen in those seconds.

The book said of Rex, of which much of the story was about, lived life in 17-second miracles. How amazing is that? 

In another part of the book, Rex keeps a journal. Not for writing about life, but just about the kind things that happen to him. What if we recorded the good that happens to us? Would we be able to see it more clearly? If we were intentionally looking for kindness?

It is a game-changing thought to me. I'm exploring it. Because, I think, even on the days that are the hardest and sometimes filled with despair, there are amazing little things that happen. What if I turned my attention to those and focused on them? What would happen?

I think I might try it, for me. Focusing only on good, every single day could be amazing. 

I want to live amazing. I want to experience amazing. And I think I'd like to record amazing. 

The book also said that love is a verb. It is. I love that statement. I want to live that one. By action.

Say prayers for us as we fly back from Seattle today. I'm gonna try not to be a nervous wreck, so say prayers for us.

Have a great one!

Friday, September 20, 2013

This mess-up is for you

With all the social media sites around, it is easy to get dragged into the desires to be the "perfect" parent, to be all our heart desires for our children, to be crafty and to never let them down. However we should all have figured out by now, that "perfect" isn't possible. It isn't even close to possible.

Most folks don't post the constant barrage of dumb things that go on in their homes for fear of being the Debbie-Downer friend or fear of scaring off wanna-be parents on how difficult it is. Or to make your friends whisper about you behind your back, tossing about the words, doctor and medication. 

And while I love making a Pinterest board or following my fave friends on Facebook, I know the "perfect" images aren't the day-in, day-out real life. I have a group of friends and we are always texting each other our screw ups. Sometimes we are pointing out other people's, but mostly it is to gather support for the areas we have failed, or to share funny stories that can't be posted on the interwebs for all to see. Something's are just for friends. This small group helps me to be grounded and not to try to be "perfect".

There's a funny e-card floating around Facebook about being the perfect parent. Basically it says that our children are messing up our ideas of how to be a perfect parent. I also like to say that I was an awesome parent BEFORE Amelia came along! 

I've done it all- forgotten Amelia's gymnastics outfit, forgotten her lunch for pre-school, left her sheet and blanket at home....and the list goes on and on. Recently I began thinking of it differently. Instead of thinking of these as MY mess-ups, I began thinking of them as something I was doing FOR Amelia. After all, if I am the perfect parent, how will she improve for her own children? I must give her room to improve and be a better parent than I am.

And when you make that switch in your mind, it makes it easier to just be you. One day, Amelia will keep some of the ways that Chris and I parented her and she will throw away most. She will find her own way, and then find herself trying to be superwoman for her children. God willing, I'll be able to remind her that I messed up for her, so that she can mess up for her children. Because daughters who think they had perfect moms, never feel they can live up to the model. And then they spend years and gazillions telling this tale to a therapist. I'm saving Amelia from that future. 

And then when you consider a mess-up is just a future form of helping, well, who can resist that?

Friday, July 26, 2013

Friday Favorites

I made it one whole week! I can't believe it, really. It must've been the right time for me to do this, because my head is completely in the game. My energy isn't up yet, but I know that will come. I am feeling better though, as I have lost some minor aches and pains that I had previously. I'm committed.

I thought I would share with you the the things that I have enjoyed this week. Lights in the darkness, if you will. For my first week, it is really just one category of drinks that has saved me when I didn't think I could do it or was thinking of (gasp) cheating.

TEA

  • Celestial Seasonings Cherry Berry tea- I can drink it unsweetened and it still tastes good. 
  • Starbuck's Passion Tea- Unsweetened, of course, and like the cherry berry, has some natural flavor. Both of these give me options when I am tired of water.
  • Earl Gray tea- It has caffeine, hallelujah! Plus, with lemon, is a nice replacement of coffee for a little nudge in the morning.
   This week hasn't been without stress for sure. I have taken my lunch everyday. I have said no to opportunities for coffees, drinks and other junk I don't need to ingest. I have not rewarded myself with food or indulged in it. I have eaten simply and it has been good.

It has been a good week.

Tomorrow, we hope to go blackberry picking. There is a farm in the northern part of the county that has thorn-less blackberries. And they're good and sweet. We thought Amelia might enjoy this, plus stock up on blackberries! I'll be combing Pinterest for recipes involving blackberries and be enjoying them for snacks and to add to my salads. Yum! Depending on what we get, I may even can some for future gifts of homemade blackberry jam.

Thanks again for all the positive feedback this week. I appreciate it! If you are considering doing this or something like it, go for it. There are millions of tougher things to overcome in this world beyond sugar and wheat. You can do it.

Stay strong on the weekend! Good luck! And, if you have a favorite recipe that is yummy and avoids sugars, wheat and dairy, please share in the comments.  Thanks.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What I thought would be hard, isn't. But what I didn't anticipate is what is very hard.

As my body adjusts to no sugar and by default, no artificial sweetener, it is also adjusting to smaller amounts of caffeine. Because, I am no longer adding cream AND sugar to coffee or drinking Diet Dr. Pepper, I am worn out today. Simply exhausted.

Now, I've read all the reports from people (and folks I know have done this, so it isn't just a tale) that say after the first four to six days, which are really hard, you have more energy.  I cannot wait.  I am absolutely sleepy from the beginning of my day to the end.

In fact, I am drinking coffee.  I added some So Delicious Coconut creamer, which is non dairy and probably has a little sweetener in it, but it still tastes awful. But I'm desperate. I need to wake up! Years ago, I purchased some caffeinated water. I wonder if it still exists...

The no sugar, limited caffeine, no energy has been very hard. The saying no to sugar, especially in varying delicious types, hasn't been. Weird.

Last night, I didn't even lick the spoon after I dipped Amelia some ice cream. My fingers dipped into it and I washed them off. I didn't nibble on a new type of cookie nor did I steal a potato chip. I thought this part would be the hardest early on. It isn't now, but that doesn't mean it won't be later in the game.

I've just been surprised.

As part of my commitment to staying on track and to save my household money, I have been cooking every night. The trick to cooking every night is experimenting with new recipes so that you don't want to go out because your home-cooked food is bland or uninspired.

Last night I made this delicious marinade for chicken that my friend Brandy had found on Pinterest. Y'all it was so unbelievably delicious that I can't wait to baste grilled veggies with it or even coat an entire chicken with the sauce. It has a touch of heat, but makes the chicken so flavorful. I highly suggest you try it out. Check it out here.

I didn't do the skewers as the recipe suggested, so I used chicken breasts. I also didn't have fresh ginger on hand either, so I substituted ground, 1.5 tsp instead. I'm sure it is even better with fresh ginger!

And I must admit, the picture grabbed me too. It looks perfect, that chicken does. Yum! Go ahead, try it! You won't be disappointed!

Here's to more energetic days ahead. I'm praying they come sooner rather than later.