Friday, August 9, 2013

A Little Down, A Little More Up

Less than a month.  Til' we get MARRIED!!!!!!!!  I've been wedding insane for a while now, and I am just all over the place.  I lost 1.4 lbs last week, but I gained 2.6 this week.  I was pumped last week and I'm disappointed this week.  But, my dress fits.  That is very important.  We have about a month to go, and I have a bachelorette party to attend, another wedding to attend, and just all around a ton to do.  Sooooooo I have many occasions where I can't eat healthy, so I should be eating healthy every chance I get.  Right?  You'd think, but NO.  We haven't gone grocery shopping in over a week, and I ate popcorn for breakfast yesterday.  What is happening to me?  I can start fresh today though.  It's gonna be salad time at lunch, and sushi for dinner.  Healthy breakfast/lunch tomorrow, and then... a wedding tomorrow night.  But I've gotta stay on track, because no way is September 7th rolling around and my dress isn't zipping up.  That is NOT happening.  So here's to lettuce, I love you.

Last week: -1.4 lbs
This week: +2.6 lbs
Total 2013: -11.2 lbs  (blarg!!)

Friday, July 26, 2013

Double Blarg!

Colonel Buster
Well, I should have posted last week, because then the .6 lbs I lost this week would have been a loss.  But it just so happens I gained a pound last week.  So instead I gained .4 lbs.  Which, is fine, I guess- it's really just staying the same in the grand scheme of things, but it's frustrating because I have have been a MACHINE about eating well.  My refrigerator is stocked with fruits and vegetables.  If I have to pick up lunch, it's a salad, with like, lettuce on it and nothing else.  Isn't this supposed to be the point where my body is like, "let's eat that extra fat you have stored on your tummy!"  Again, not the end of the world, but I just feel like I've been working SO HARD and I'm just plateauing.

On a good note, I'm still loving Jazzercise.  And wedding planning is still going well.  Only 6 more weeks!  Crazy town.  I feel like I'm in the calm before the storm. 

So, I'll leave you with the cutest picture of Buster that's ever been taken.  Have a great weekend!

Last week: +1.0 lbs
This week: -.6 lbs
Total this year: -12.4 lbs

Friday, July 12, 2013

Wham, Bam, Thank You, Ma'am

Boom!  Another .8 lbs!  I am kicking BUTT at this whole weight loss thing!  I'll be honest, the wedding motivation is really helping.  It makes it really easy to turn down fried foods/ drinks/ chips, etc.  That and I spend all my free time making paper flowers for our ceremony arch.  It's hard to eat anything while you're folding/ cutting/ shaping flowers.  It's taking longer than expected.  That's another story for another day though.

I love Jazzercise!  I bought a Groupon (as much as I hate to support that site, they DO have some good deals occasionally...) for 30 classes, and I've been using the heck out of them.  I go about twice a week, and usually burn between 400-550 calories in an hour.  Every class varies a little, so it's not the same, stagnant workout every time.  I've also been much more vigilant about tracking every bite that goes in my mouth.  I'm really determined not to backslide after the wedding- I'm giving myself one week (honeymoon!) to be bad (I'll try to use moderation) and then it's back to tracking, all the time.

Anyways, it's been a good week.  Even after the weekend- where I did have a few beers on the 4th, had steak and crab legs on Saturday, I still managed to lose weight, and I'm very proud of it.

This week: -.8 lbs
Total this year: -12.8 lbs

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Woah Nelly, It's Been A While...

I present to you- the palest couple in the world!
Woah.  I have been BUSY.  To say the least.  My brain has devolved into a puddle of wedding related mush.  It's been almost two months... and there's only TWO months to go until the big day!  Between making a huge, tissue paper archway for the ceremony, painting table numbers and cake toppers, not to mention FINDING A NEW CEREMONY SPOT 'CAUSE WE GOT DICKED OVER... yeah, that happened.  That being said, when we spoke last (or you read this, whoever the two of you are), I was down 8.8 for the year.  As of this morning, I'm officially down 12 lbs.  Awesome!

What have I been doing to get there?
  • Tracking EVERYTHING
  • Eating a ton of veggies/fruits (especially Watermelon! Go summer!)
  • Started a new fitness routine- joined Jazzercise (it's not just Grandma's, I swear)
  • Being VERY vigilant about my alcohol intake.
It's crunch time.  My dress fits, but you know, there are a few pictures taken on your wedding day.  So while I will still look like myself, I want to look like the POW, ZAP, HOLY-CRAP-SHE-LOOKS-GREAT version of myself.

So, I'm eating a lot of lettuce, trying to get in 10,000 steps everyday, and not sleeping.  (I wish I were, but the wedding zombies are eating my brains.)  Also, according to my credit card statement, shopping a lot.  I should probably cut back.

So, things are on track.  I'm feeling really good, giddy all the time, and just in general having a blast with the whole wedding planning thing.  Except for finding a new ceremony spot, that was a tad bit stressful.  But things really worked out for us, and now we're getting married at the Kirtland Country Club, which is not only more beautiful, but will end up saving us money, has enough parking, and an amazing rain back up spot.  So, it worked out.

This week (two months):  -3.2 lbs
This year: -12 lbs

Friday, May 10, 2013

After All That...

I STILL gained this week! Blarg.  You know what though?  I didn't work out, and honestly, I could have done way better in the eating department.  So, keep on keepin' on.  Yesterday and today?  I've been eating well.  The weather was AMAZING last night, so my girlfriends and I took a walk around Lakewood Park- if you live in the Cleveland area and have never been- you HAVE to go.  It's one of the best views of downtown I've ever seen.  It's right on the lake.  It's beautiful. 

One of the braintrusts in my ladies group had a genius idea last night- Ladies Night Bootcamp!  I've mentioned before that I get together a few times a month with a group of my lady friends for dinner/ wine/ boardgames/ movies- and for some reason, we've never worked out together!  We have some certified workout buffs in the group, so we're going to be taking turns making up a class and teaching it to the others.  We're starting out next week with a bootcamp routine, but we have talked about cross fit, yoga, greek dancing, and much to my chagrin, running.  A few girls in the group have completed marathons and are really into running, so I might be *sick* that week.  Or I guess I could try :)  Not to mention, there are several of us getting married within the upcoming few months, so we're all really trying to whip ourselves into wedding shape. 

So, while it was an up week on the scale, I am ending this week feeling good about what's to come.  Maybe my friends can help get me through this plateau!

This week: +.6 lbs
Total 2013: -8.8 lbs

Friday, May 3, 2013

Recommitting To My Goals, Part 5

Buster "Putting it on the line" Sweigard
Step Five:  Put it all out on the line.

Don't just talk about it, commit to it- put your money where your mouth is.  I've done that in some respects by joing the bootcamp class Im currently in, although my pass runs out at the end of this month.  This weekend I will research a new class that I can go to after this one.  I'm into changing up the routine every few months, so it doesn't get stagnant and boring.  I definitly feel that paying for some sort of class keeps me going, so I can get my money's worth.

Here's to making it through the weekend and tracking everything.

Also- I've moved my weigh in day back to Fridays.  It's been a few weeks, and although I'm down from last week, I didn't post my weigh in last week, so I'll just do a total this week and get back to the week to week differences next week.  I'm still up from my last weigh in, but I also know I've gained some muscle, so that's exciting!  Still, it's a 1.8 lb gain since last weigh in on here.  Blarg!  Here's to keeping positive over the weekend!

Total 2013: -9.4 lbs

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Recommitting To My Goals, Part 4

Step 4: Think About It

Take some time to really think about not only how you'll accomplish this goal, but how you'll feel once you do.  I know from prior experiences that when I've reached the weight loss goal, I suddenly feel like I've physiologically changed- like my body doesn't handle food the way that it ACTUALLY does.  Which is why I always gain the weight back.  This time I have to be mindful when I get to my goal that I'll still need to be keeping track of food, and keep active.  I'll have to not go on a free-for-all. 

How will I feel when I get to my goal?  Amazing.  I'll probably even buy myself some new clothes.  But I'm going to try to keep it on the forefront of my mind, and while I'm buying new clothes, I'll make a mindful effort to not tack on an ice cream cone while I'm shopping. 

Mindful and moderation.  That's the name of the game.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Recommitting To My Goals, Part 3

Tallboy, Bubs, my niece Emaline, and me
Step Three:  Know your reasons why.

Short term: wedding.  It's even hard to admit that I'm doing this just for one day, because I know for a lot of people (including me), once that day is past, you kind of revert back to whatever it is you were before you started on this 'wedding diet.'  So, that is ONLY my short term goal for weight loss.

Long term: health.  First and foremost, I want to be healthy so I don't have to deal with all the health problems that come along with excess weight.  But there are so many other reasons, like: Love.  Love with a capital 'L.'  I'm getting married, so I want to be in shape for my Husband, and we can live a long, full life.  After a while, we'll probably have kids.  I'd like to be able to keep up with them, and teach them how to live a healthy life too.  Looks?  Sure, I'd like to look nice and feel comfortable in my skin.  Learn to love myself in the mirror, not just the 'me' in my head.  Loving yourself in the mirror is not about achieveing the perfect body, it's about loving the things that are uniquely 'you.'  I just would like to get in shape and eat healthy, so I don't have to go about this 'I need to lose 20 lbs' every few years.  It's about getting healthy now so I don't have 80 lbs to lose in 30 years.

What are your reasons?

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Recommitting To My Goals, Part 2

Step Two: Start slow.

I have been trying to do this- focus on small increments of my main goal, instead of the full 20 lbs.  I've been going in 5 lb increments- maybe that's too much?  Maybe I should focus on the next two pounds.  It's hard to even think about the BIG finish line that's so far away, so I should be thinking the one that's in the (hopefully) near future.  Another two pounds.  That's a doable goal.  If you start out too fast, or with too much on your plate (figuratively speaking), it will become exhausting and overwhelming.  I've been too focused on the end goal- I'm going to focus on these smaller increments again.

Break your ultimate goal into small, manageable ones.  Regardless of where you are, you can always move forward.   You can remember that getting exercise in isn't only about going to the gym- get out and enjoy the weather!  Gardening can lend its self to a workout as well, if you have as many weeds in your garden as I do :)

Subsets of smaller goals: write down everything.  I looked back through my last three weeks of journals, and I noticed I've been not writing down anything on weekends.  I know for a fact (since it's been reflected at the scale) that I have not been eating the way I need to- so in accordance with my two pound goal, I also want to write down EVERYTHING, especially on weekends.

I'm not putting a time limit goal on the next two pounds, I'm just going to celebrate when I get there.  And then move on to the next two.

It's Tuesday! Think about what small, slow goals you can put in front of you that you can achieve.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Recommitting To My Goals, Part 1

Well, April has been a disaster.  Not really, I mean I joined a boot camp class right by work and have been going on average twice a week.  That's been great, and really hard.  The eating stuff?  It's not going great.  It's going well for about 4 days a week, and a disaster the other three days.  I need to get recommitted, now.  I'm taking this opportunity to reacquaint myself and recommit myself to my weight loss goals.  I'm going to do a five part series, each a step to help guide myself to my ultimate goal, and how I'll get there.

Today: The beginning.  Only ONE goal at a time.  

That's right.  Let's not focus on a 10 minute mile, or a 25 inch waist. (Is that possible?)  Let's just focus on my main goal here: to lose 20 lbs.  A big number, yes, but an achieveable one.  Only a few weeks ago, I was half way there!  Now I'm... almost half way there, again.  So that's my one goal for the time being: 20 lbs.  Yes, other good things will come with that.  Smaller waists, stronger body, healthier me.  But the weight- that's what I'm focused on now.

I know- it's not always just about the scale.  It's about what else comes off when the scale is staying the same.  Muscle weighs more than fat.  I know, I know, I know.  But I'm sick of plateauing.  It's been too long, and I'm growing stagnant.  Today's mission: really start thinking about how to jump start my weight loss again.

Today, I'm recommitting to my goal of 20 lbs.  I'm not going to punish myself for where I am- I'm going to celebrate that I've already achieved so much.  But I need to REFOCUS.  20 lbs, here I come!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Some Happy For Your Monday

If only we could all be as happy as my niece, Emaline.  Of course, I wouldn't wish her meltdowns on my worst enemy, but that being said, most of the time she's amazing.  She's going to be our flower girl, come September, and she is taking it VERY seriously.  For her, being a flower girl is something that literally defines her right now.  She carries a bouquet everywhere she goes. 

I just wanted to share some gratitude this Monday for my awesome family and some really nice weather this past weekend!  Hope you're having a good Monday, and if not, that this tiny smile lifts your mood!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Life Lessons

Don't take yourself too seriously.
My Wellness Tracks class wrapped up last Wednesday; I had my reassessment on Friday, and I started a new boot camp class on Saturday.  Last time I finished my first level Wellness Tracks class, I did really well on the reassessment, kept working out for a few months, then totally fell off the wagon.  I'm trying to keep involved in my health, and keep changing my exercise to keep it interesting.  When it comes to working out, I get bored easily.  I thought about trying to just do Nike Training Club workouts three times a week, but I know myself, and if those are anything but make ups for missed gym workouts, I won't keep at them.  So I'm trying to hit up these boot camp workouts three times a week, and for weeks like this one, make up for missed sessions by doing NTC at home.  So far, so good.  I know I push myself a lot harder in classes- I don't know if it's because there are other people there, but I get a better workout when I'm not alone.

And if you're wondering, my reassessment went really well.  A few stats:

My max plank time went from 2:35 to 3:20

My max wall sit time went from 2:30 to 3:35

My max pushups went from 37 to 71 (modified knee pushups, not real ones)

I lost 10 lbs since Jan, and 11 inches total over my body. (3 of those came off my waist!)

My resting heart rate and my recovery time also both went down- I don't have the stats in front of me, but I know every beat you save is time added to your life.

It just goes to show that with some effort- both physical and mental- you can make a BIG difference in your health.  I told someone last night at our graduation dinner: I want to lose 20 lbs now and learn how to keep it off, so I don't have 100 lbs to lose in 15 years.  And I really mean that.  I've lost weight before- I know HOW to do that- what I'm learning now is the discipline to keep it off.  I want to maintain this healthy lifestyle- not just so I can look good at my wedding, but so I can live a healthy lifestyle when we have kids- teach them to make the right food and exercise decisions, so I can be active and not sedentary- for so many reasons.

If you have access to any sort of training program through your work place- look into it and take advantage of it.  I know it weren't for COSE, a program like this would have cost me literally thousands of dollars.  So for that, I'm VERY grateful- this program changed my life.

Even with a pretty heavy Easter Sunday, I still managed to lose weight this week- I gained last week and didn't blog about it- even though I knew I should have.  Gaining can be just as useful as losing- it's how we deal with hard situations that make us who we are.  I dealt with an up week last week by eating well and exercising this week and lost that gain, plus some.

Past two weeks: -.4 lbs
Total 2013: -11.2 lbs

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Winter Will NEVER End

I'm pretty sure Buster is sick of the snow too.
...or at least that's really how it feels.  The snow just keeps falling.  Each time I think Spring might be around the corner, a fresh batch of snow comes and punches me in the face.  Stupid snow.  Listen, I made my living in Cleveland bed, and I'm lying in it.  I know this happens here.  And I'm fine with winter, until the 'first day of Spring' rolls around and we get three more inches of snow.  Then I'm done.

However, this post is not about snow.  It's my weigh in post, and it's about staying the same.  I didn't lose this week, but I didn't gain either.  I count it as a win.  Maintaining when I'm not only faced with Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs, Girl Scout Cookies, and an additional 3" of snow?  WIN.  GO ME.  Seriously.  I'm amazing.  Screw you, Punxatawney Phil.  You have deceived us one last time.  I hope someone goes Bill Murray on your ass and drives you over a cliff. 

This week: -/+ 0.0 lbs
Total 2013: -10.8 lbs

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Celebrating Every Goal

Post Thankgsiving- one of my favorite pics of Tallboy and my Grandpa
I did it!  I reached Goal #2- 10 lbs off!  10.8 to be exact.  I feel like I've been on a bit of a plateau these last few weeks, and I'm happy to reach this milestone.  Not huge, considering how close I've been for weeks, but I feel like I broke through some sort of barrier.  I'm at the point in my weight loss where clothes I've been wanting to fit into for a while fit again, and I look/feel good in them.

Next goal: 15 lbs. 

I have, however, been fighting the urge to dive head first into a box of Samoas- the Girl Scouts are out, full force around here/emotions are high- not a good combo.  My Grandpa broke his hip on Tuesday, had a partial replacement yesterday, and is recovering in the hospital now.  It's extra tough on him- he's 91, so everything is that much harder.  I'm really trying not to eat my feelings here, but I've been really worried about him the last few days.  So far, everything is going the best it can, given the circumstances. 

This week: -1.6 lbs
Total 2013: -10.8 lbs

Friday, March 8, 2013

Laugh Yoga

Lets be THIS happy this weekend.
So, I took a Laugh Yoga class the other night.  It was super weird, but highly entertaining.  The whole concept is 'fake it 'til you make it'- basically you do weird things and fake laugh until you start real laughing.  Why?  Because laughing is good for you.  I don't think anyone would argue that.  While I don't think I'll be signing up for Laugh Yoga on a regular basis, it certainly did make me think about the amount of joy and laughter in my own life.  According to our instructor, children laugh about 400 times a day.  They laugh at anything and everything.  As adults, laugh more like... 10 times a day.  So... we laughed.  For 45 minutes.  We did laughing chants, and I'll be honest, at one point, I was LAUGHING.  Like, can't control myself, crying, laughing.  For real.  It was nice.  At the end of the class, he told us about things that he does during the week- rituals, if you will, that made him happy.  I think the world would be a million times better if we all followed these rituals.  I'd really like to work these into my own life.

On Monday- Say nice things to people.  Maybe just one or two people- but if you think someone looks nice, tell them so.  Instead of just thinking it, actually tell them.  If your waiter was wonderful, let them know, don't just tell the person you're eating with.

On Tuesday- Do something new.  Instead of following your daily routine- maybe take a different way home from work.  Try a new recipe.  Just do something you've never done before, and open your horizons.

On Wednesday- Be grateful.  Instead of thinking of the things you don't have, appreciate what you DO have.  Maybe your work is stressing you out right now, but try and put it out of your mind and think of something that you already have that makes you happy.  Be Grateful.

On Thursday- Spread kindness.  Pay for the person behind you in line at the coffee shop, or the person behind you at the toll booth.  Just do a random act of kindness.  Do you see that old lady trying to cross the street?  Don't just think about helping her, just get off your butt and do it.  You'll feel awesome.  Random acts of kindness don't just benefit the person you helped, YOU will feel great for doing it.

On Fridays- Learn to forgive.  It's the end of the week.  Instead of focusing on how crappy your week was, face those feelings, and try and forgive.  Not just someone who wronged you, but forgive yourself for beating yourself up.  I blogged yesterday about trying to NOT be hard on myself.  It's Friday.  I'm going to forgive myself and try to learn from it.

On Saturdays and Sundays- Rest, Relax and Recreation.  Sleep in!  Get outside!  Breathe deep!  Our instructor said on weekends he turns his phone OFF.  I don't know if I could go that far- but I do think I need to focus less on work e-mails/ facebook/ etc. and get outside, do housework, things that will make me HAPPY when they're done.  I love painting and I haven't touched a canvas in months.  Maybe this weekend, instead of watching another mindless TV show or checking facebook, I'll get into my studio and paint.

Lets work some gratitude and joy into our lives- and instead of just focusing on our bodies health, focus on our mental health. 

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

I'm Good Enough, I'm Smart Enough, and Dog Gone It, People Like Me

I was thinking this morning that I'd love to not have to count calories.  That's my goal after getting to a healthy weight- to know the right amount of fuel for my body, without having to write down every bite that I take.  It's a nice dream, but I know from past experience that once I stop journaling, I almost immediately gain back whatever I've lost.  I'm not trying to turn this into some sort of Debbie Downer post today- I just think sometimes we have to acknowledge that our natural state of willpower or appetite isn't what anyone elses is.  Are there tons of people out there happy with their bodies (no matter what weight/state they're in)- yes.  Do all of them religiously write down everything they eat?  Probably not.  I mean- when I workout- I use not one, but two devices to keep track of the calories I burn.  A FitBit, a glorified pedometer, and a Polar Heart Rate Monitor, to more accurately keep track of the calories I burn during non-cardio exercises like weight lifting, that a FitBit can't really track.  It's a little ridiculous.  But I do it, because it works for me.  I don't think anyone would say I have a problem or a disorder, but that's probably because I'm an overweight woman actively trying to lose weight.  To get healthy.  On the other hand, if I were 50 pounds thinner and using the same amount of devices and constantly talking and thinking about the amount of calories I took in and expended during the day, I'd probably get labeled as someone who has an eating disorder.  It's a very fine line to walk, and I'm not really sure how to walk it sometimes.

I wish I wasn't constantly thinking about food in an unhealthy way- I'm writing this blog and working out for the single purpose of being 'healthy.'  But when does it cross the line from trying to get in shape to an all consuming thought of not being good/healthy/skinny/fit enough?

I am aware that not everyone is born with the same body shape.  It's not like women are born as leggy, thin, toned beings and then choose to morph into whatever shape we become- we all KNOW that we're different shapes.  So why aren't different shapes generally accepted as being good?  I have friends who are in amazing shape- they are mindful about what they eat, they exercise, they're GOOD to themselves- and YET- they don't feel like they're beautiful or meet the norms of what they "should" look like.  Why can't we just be happy by knowing we're doing right by ourselves and this is how we're SUPPOSED to look?  It's extremely frustrating to both know that this is my body shape, it will be for life- I'm not going to shape my muscles and bones into a completely different structure no matter how hard I try.  So why isn't just eating healthy and working out good enough for me?  I feel great when I'm workout out regularly and eating healthy.  But when I'm not at my 'goal weight' it starts to creep in that I'm not doing enough and maybe I'll never be able to do enough to reach my goal, so fuck it.  What a terrible attitude to have.  But that's probably why I keep gaining the weight back.  Because I can't be happy with a small victory- I feel the need to attain impossible goals.  I might as well be mad at myself for not having grown an additional two inches during the process as well.

So, after this long, weird, rant- this is my goal for the week: Don't get mad at yourself for achieving small victories.  They're victories, after all, and they should be celebrated.  I'm down a little at the scale this week, but even better than that, I dug down and found the will power to exercise more than usual this past week.  I'm getting stronger, and that's awesome.  I was disappointed this morning that I *only* lost .4 lbs from last week- but it's the right direction.  Don't beat yourself up.

This week: -.4 lbs
Total 2013: -9.2 lbs

Thursday, February 28, 2013


Damn.  I really was hoping to reach Goal #2 this week- 10 lbs down for the year.  Instead, I gained .8 lbs.  Certainly not the end of the world, but maybe a little frustrating.  I was over on calories this week, but only by about 1,000 for the entire week- and considering that I'm eating at a deficit of 750 calories per day as to what would sustain my current weight- I shouldn't have actually gained.  But I guess it's not always just what you ate yesterday or last Sunday, sometimes, it's what you ate 2 weeks ago.  Sometimes stuff just takes a while to catch up.  Whatever.  Back on track, on the wagon, on whatever it is that takes me to the weight loss zone.

I never took measurements, and haven't been doing so- I totally should be- so I don't know what's changed there.  I can tell something has, espicially since January 1- clothes are fitting me much better now.

I'm still happy.  I'm getting healthier, day by day.  I worked out with 5 lb weights yesterday and they felt so... light.  That wasn't the case, not even two months ago.  Fitter, happier, more productive.

Here's to not being a robot about weight loss.

This week: +.8 lbs
Total 2013: -8.8 lbs

Thursday, February 21, 2013

And Another One Down

The best portrait ever drawn of me.  "Aunt Heather Outside"
I'm really on a roll this year!  And losing some of my rolls in the process!  I'm feeling so good right now.  The weight loss certainly helps- I'm actually looking forward to Thursdays.  I still am weighing myself every day, but I keep in mind that day to day fluctuations don't matter as much as a steady downward trend with my weight. I am aware the it's not coming off as rapidly, but that's to be expected.  At my weight, I would actually be concerned if I was consistently losing 4 lbs a week- I'd probably go get myself checked for worms or something if I was.  At this point, I'm really happy losing half a pound a week.  Losing anything is a win.

I was thinking last night about struggles I had with weight gain towards the end of last year- I couldn't wrap my head around it- I was eating healthy and exercising, or so I told myself.  Looking back at my (very incomplete) food journals, I really wasn't.  I was consistently eating too much and not getting in much activity.  That is a surefire way to gain weight.  A sedentary lifestyle paired with eating out a lot and not really paying attention to my food.

This year, I feel like I'm on the right track.  I don't feel deprived at all- but I am definitely keeping an eye on the food that's going into my body.  I had a really healthy day yesterday, yet I still ate out for lunch, had a small cannoli for dessert, and a beer to end the day.  However, I still stayed in a healthy range of calories.  Maybe TallBoy had a full size cannoli and I just had a mini, but it only really takes a few bites of sugar to satisfy you- sugar is a very powerful food- something to keep in mind.

Just a great week.  Here's to another one!

This week: -1.0 lb
Total 2013: -9.6 lbs
So close to Goal #2!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Putting In The Work

My basement workout space.  I think it needs motivational posters.
I had my midterm assessment for the wellness class I'm currently taking about a week ago.  With the exception of a few days here and there that were clearly not in the 'thinking/acting healthy' category (i.e. spending a weekend in Athens, OH, or in NYC)- my instructor told me I'm on the right path.  I've had really good results this year, mostly from really watching my carbohydrate intake, so I'm going to continue on.  My motivational problem is working out.  So far this year, I've been consistent in getting in at least two workouts a week- one at my Wednesday wellness class, and the other is usually on Saturday afternoon in my basement.  I've just been doing cross training exercises- two or three sets of weights, followed by a few minutes of high intensity cardio, switching it up for about an hour.  As it usually happens, about 7 weeks in, I'm getting a little bored of my current routine. 

Tallboy and I were fortunate to have been gifted a really nice at home gym from his dad- we just got it set up and put to use about two weeks ago.  I'm still a bigger fan of free weights, but it's nice to have an alternative, plus Tallboy will do reps on the machine, since my weights are too light for him. 

I discovered (a little late to the game, apparently, this app has been around for a while) the Nike Training Club app yesterday.  It's almost as good as having a personal trainer.  It's amazing.  Like I said, I only got it yesterday, but I'm already in love.  It has over 85 different (!) workouts, videos of every exercise, and talks you through the movements.  I've only done one of the intermediate workouts so far, but let me tell you, it was challenging and exciting.  It felt good to still be switching up my cardio and strength training, and having some new moves.  It was also nice to have it planned out for you.  The best part?  It's FREE.  Yep.  FREE.  There are no words.

My goal for this week is to get at least one extra workout in with my new app- I think I'm in love.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

I hope you have someone you love as much as Buster loves Arnie.  Or as much as I love Tallboy.  Happy Valentine's Day!  FYI, speaking of LOVE, Buster is feeling much better. He's back to the snack begging snuggle monster we all know and love.

It's not only Valentine's Day, it's weigh-in day!  I was a little aprehensive, since we went to Ohio University over the weekend and I had beer, pizza and french fries for dinner on Saturday night.  (In that order.)  We came back, and I literally weighed 5.5 lbs MORE on Monday morning than I did on Saturday morning.  Impressive, no?  I knew it was mostly water weight (plus the entire Chipotle burrito I consumed on Sunday!) due to a lot of salty food and very little water, but it was shocking.  Anyways, that came off within two days, and then getting right back to eating well on Monday helped me shed a few additional lbs.  I lost what I gained last week, plus .6 more.

A few things- I have decided to drop Weight Watchers, once again.  It really hasn't been the oomph I've needed- I've found it uninspiring this time around, and haven't seen much success.  Since I started this Wellness Tracks Masters Class, I've seen more improvement in 1.5 months than I did in 6 months in Weight Watchers.  At WW, I know I could've found a more inspiring leader, but I am going to take the $40/month I was spending at WW and join the gym my class is through- that way I can continue to meet with my nutritionist and go over my food journals with him. 

Here's to progress- however you get there, if you're successful with it, continue.  If not, find something that works. 

This week: -2.0 lbs
Total 2013: -8.6 lbs

Thursday, February 7, 2013

The First Backslide of the Year

I knew it would happen eventually, but here we are, one week into February, and I backslid already.  I am GOING to be okay with this, and keep on going.  What can I say.  It happened, I've acknowledged it, and I'm moving on.

Tough weeks, be damned!  I have an amazing life, and rough spots happen to everyone.  So, short story short, I gained this week.  1.4 lbs.  So boo, that sucks, now I'll start paying a little more attention.  I also only worked out like once last week.  So, that's that.  What a crappy blog post!

Weekly goal: To really think about the food I'm about to eat- not just decide in the moment.  Have healthy foods on hand to combat unhealthy snacking.

This week: +1.4 lbs
Total 2013: -6.6 lbs

Thursday, January 31, 2013

A Rough Week

Turns out Buster wears a 24 Month size onesie.
Wow, this week has not been easy.  This is my weight in post, so up front, I lost, and that's something.  Especially for this week.  STRESS!  Buster went into the vet on Monday to get his teeth cleaned and a few removed... turns out he has the worst teeth ever.  They removed 7 teeth, but then also found out that his screwed up boy parts are even worse than we thought.  This is something I've known about since he was little, but the vet always said that as long as he could pee, that it wasn't something to worry about.  Now that they did a little poking around, turns out he'll be needing another surgery to fix what's wrong with him.  Unless I drew you a picture or showed you an x-ray, it's an impossible situation to explain, so just trust that it's weird and screwed up, and Buster was born with a VERY unusual anatomy. 

So, he went in on Monday morning, happy as a clam, and when I picked him up Monday evening he looked like death warmed over.  I think that's usual when dogs go under anesthesia.  But Tuesday, he still wasn't eating or drinking, so I had to take him BACK to the vet, and they injected some fluids.  He started pepping up a little Wednesday, and today he's almost back to the Buster we know and love.  He now has no front teeth, and has to wear a baby onesie so he doesn't pick at his stitches on his belly.  He's a mess.  I've been a mess this whole week.  You all know that I'm insanely obsessed with my dog, he's basically my hairy child.

On top of all that, we've been watching my parents' dog, Arnie, a 120-lb Irish Wolfhound.  He's a teddy bear, but caring for a huge dog in your small house while you're worried beyond belief for your own puppy, it's just a lot.  Whew.  Glad to get that off my chest. 

Anyways, the best news of the week is that for right now, Buster is doing way better.  The crappy news is that he'll have to go back under the knife at some point in the near future, for a much riskier, much more unusual surgery.  Boo.

So, I lost a pound this week, which is great, considering I usually just eat ice cream and drink wine when I'm stressed/depressed.  High five, self, for not eating your feelings!  But don't worry, while I was busy NOT stress eating, Buster did get a lot of treats.   Especially Peanut Butter, that's his favorite.

So far, this year is going well in the weight loss department, 8 lbs down in the month of January!

This week: - 1.0 lb
Total 2013: -8.0 lbs

Thursday, January 24, 2013

First Goal Met

We've had a bit of snow, lately.  Don't forget- Cleveland!
My weigh in days are Thursdays, but I knew by the weekend that I'd be meeting my first yearly goal of 5 lbs.  First 5 lbs of the year- gone!  I know it'll get harder as there's less weight to lose, but the first five wasn't so bad.  The big things I'm focusing on: veggies, veggies, and more veggies.  Lean protein, eggs, cooking with healthy fats. Fruit, but not too much.  I've been trying to keep my carbohydrate intake below 40% of my daily foods.  Exercise, three times a week.  I feel like I'm re-writing Radiohead's "Fitter Happier" here. 

It's working though.  Something in common between my Cose Wellness Tracks Masters class and Weight Watchers is that both are focusing on small, achievable goals.  Within the past week, both have asked that I set an attainable goal that can be achieved in the upcoming week.  I think this is a wonderful idea, and I plan on making my new, weekly goals part of my weekly weigh in posts.  These will not be weight related goals; rather they will be nutrition/fitness/personal goals that I'd like to become part of every day life.

This week's goal: to be active during television commercials.  I still watch too much TV.  Of this I'm aware.  However, I think if I were to pick a show I want to watch, (not just channel surf until I land on whatever until the next commercial)- I'll watch during the show, and then at commercial breaks, get up and do something productive.  Not stay seated on the couch.  Productive ideas: clearing the kitchen table, putting shoes away, doing dishes, making the bed, cleaning the bathroom a little bit at a time, play with Buster, etc.  This way, I'll get to enjoy my show, AND make the house look better.  Track some more steps for the day.  Staying active is where I need to be.  (Plus it wouldn't hurt Buster to do some extra running around!)

It's nice to have some smaller goals to look forward to, instead of just a high number that seems so far away.  Weight goal #1 met!

Later this week I'll be back with some yummy, filling and healthy breakfast recipes I've been experimenting with!

This week: -3.0 lbs
Total 2013: -7.0 lbs

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Making It Work

Why yes, we did visit Chuck Bass' hotel while in NYC
Thursdays are my 'weigh-in' day- I'm still doing Weight Watchers, but I think for right now I'm going to do my weigh ins at home.  It's more consistent (same day, same time, wearing the same thing) and I can almost never skip it, because it is maybe once a year that I'm not actually home on a Thursday morning.  TallBoy can almost always tell how it went by my mood on Thursday mornings- if I'm grumpy, that means I gained, and if I'm jumping around super excited, that means I lost.  This morning, he assumed I lost, because I was, in fact, jumping around, super excited.  However- that was not the case- I neither lost nor gained- but it's a big milestone for me.  I don't think I've EVER traveled and not gained weight.  Usually I travel, eat like crazy, then I'll either take another 3-4 weeks to lose what I put on during a small trip (because I come back with that vacation mentality for another few weeks), or I'll just stop following my plan.  It's alarming how many times just going on vacation has not only knocked me off the wagon, but I'll convince myself that it's not even worth getting back on.  Now- on this trip to New York- I ate some pizza, drank some beer, and even had brunch.  But my breakfasts and lunches?  Healthy!  My evenings may have consisted of pizza, reubens and beer, but it wasn't four slices, it was two.  It wasn't a whole Reuben, it was half of one, with a side of soup.  I feel like I actually got the hang of it this weekend.  I won't lie- part of me was too afraid to show my food journal to the nutritionist at my wellness class so I was kind of intimidated into eating healthy- but still, I did it.  Somewhat.  Either way, I went to New York, ate some stuff I wanted to eat, had a great time, and Didn't. Gain. Weight.  That's huge for me.  I even got back on plan Sunday night.  TallBoy was helpful- one time we were eating hot dogs at Crif Dogs and I told TallBoy at least 3 times that I wanted french fries too.  He told me, 'you said to help you.' I replied, yes, but I WANT FRENCH FRIES.  He said I'd be happier if I didn't have them, and that I'd regret it if I did.  He was right, and I didn't get french fries.

Anyways, I guess I'm just writing all this to say that even though I didn't lose this week, I kept off the 4 pounds I lost last week, and that's big time.  That's making it work.

This week: -0.0 lbs
Total 2013: -4.0 lbs

Monday, January 14, 2013

Tackling the Usual Road Blocks

My view flying into LGA
I'm doing my weigh in post a few days late, since we left for NYC on Thursday (my normal weigh in day.)  The first week of the year went incredibly well.  I lost 4 lbs (!!!!) in the first week.  I know the last couple pounds really came on quickly, so I wasn't super suprised when they dropped off quickly too.

Now- how did my traveling experience go?  Better than usual-  I ate well for breakfast and lunch each day, but dinner and drinks were another thing.  BUT- I still wrote everything down.  Which, truly, is a first for me.  Even on Sunday night, I ate a balanced, healthy dinner.  Usually when returning from a trip where I go overboard on the food, I tend to continue the unhealthy eating until at least Monday morning.  Small steps- and ones I'm very proud of.  My weigh in this morning was still higher than expected, but I have until Thursday morning to see where it really got me.

We walked so much- I logged almost 10,000 steps Thursday, almost 15,000 Friday, and over 18,000 on Saturday!  I didn't drink the normal amount of water, so that amount of walking, coupled with increased salt intake probably made me bloat up a little, but I'll spend this week rectifying that.  Getting back on track immediatly might just be my life saver this time.

Overall, it was a great trip, and while I wish I had not indulged quite as much as I did- I still feel like I was in more control than usual when I travel.

The best part of the trip?  Snuggles with TallBoy's new niece- who will soon be my niece as well!

Week 1: -4.0 lbs
Total 2013: -4.0 lbs

Monday, January 7, 2013

Starting the Year Off Right

Last trip to NYC
We're a week into January, 2013.  I'm feeling great- we're progressing really well on wedding planning, (I got THE dress this weekend!!!), I've been eating well and have cut way back on the booze front.  I'm working up to my first real challenge of the year- a weekend trip to NYC.  Last year and this year TallBoy have gotten each other the same gift- a weekend getaway to New York.  This year we're really excited to meet his brand new niece (the big reason we're going); but we're also looking forward to seeing the sights and taking in some nostalgia for him.  TallBoy used to live there, so we go and visit all his old haunts and eat at his favorite places.  It's always a good time, but even with all the walking we do, I never offset the amount of food I take in.  Every single trip I take, it's hard for me to get over the 'vacation' mentality- that I can eat whatever and drink whatever I want because I'm on vacation.  I've been mentally prepping for this trip for a week now.  I know what I want to do- splurge on one or two meals, but don't let every meal be an indulgence.  Have a few drinks but don't go overboard.  Moderation, moderation, moderation.  I don't expect to lose weight this weekend, but I do hope I can at least stay somewhat on track and maybe maintain?  I'm aware that it's just three days, but you can really do a lot of damage over the course of three days.  I have my first session of my Wellness Tracks Masters Class on Wednesday, so I'm hoping that will give me some inspiration to stay on track for the weekend.  Plus, I've got this whole week to really be GOOD to myself.  Here's to facing and defeating hurdles!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

So This Is The New Year...

And I don't feel any different.

That being said, I have about a thousand new years resolutions this year.  I always have a lot, and this year is no different.  However.  I do realize that I have got to start approaching things much differently.  The biggest achievement that I can say I made in 2012 is how I've learned to love taking amazing care of my teeth.  My dental health?  Through the roof.  I hated flossing before, and so instead of making myself floss every night and hate it, I bought a Waterpik and love using it every night.  I had a problem, knew I needed a different way to solve it, and did.  Even the dentist was impressed.  Let me tell you, there is almost no better feeling than having your dentist tell you how amazing your teeth and gums look.

Last January, I talked about how I had learned a lot of good new habits in 2011, and 2012 would be the year of continuing good habits.  That happened, for about 7 months.  I could go on and on with excuses, but when all is said and done, very few of those 'habits' actually stuck with me.  Unfortunately, I gained back any of the weight I lost, and am back at square one.  I'm not giving up- I just need to find a better way to go about this.  I know it's still about eating healthy and exercising, so I need to make those habits in the same way that brushing my teeth and putting face lotion on- I need to make them second nature.  I need eating healthy to be a habit in a way that if I choose the wrong thing, I'll immediately feel the need to correct.  Like when you skip brushing your teeth, you feel gross.  I need to feel that way about healthy food. 

TallBoy and I made a long list of New Year's resolutions and I'm hanging it on the cabinet.  I'm scraping my current weight loss log and starting over- making small, incremental goals.  My first goal of the year?  To lose 5 lbs.  Not a lot, but it's a start in the right direction.  2013 should be an amazing year, and I want my weight loss to be a part of that.  Here's to making small changes that can really add up.

Happy New Year!