"Though no one can go back and make a brand new start,
anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending." ~ Anonymous

Monday, December 31, 2012

Reviewing 2012 Goals

It is New Year's Eve and yesterday I took some time to look over my first post of 2012 to see if I'm anywhere near where I wanted to be with regards to my health. 

While my weigh-in was less-than-stellar, I looked over my 2012 goals and realized this year wasn't all that bad.  

Here is a bit of the post and goals I set and how I did.  

So, in the spirit of life goals and resolutions I have the following plans for 2012:

  • I will continue striving for better, in all aspects of my life - especially getting cards/gifts in the mail on time...I've gotten really bad about that lately.   I did make progress in this area.  Not all packages got out on time, but the majority of them did.  I'm becoming more conscious of this and continue striving for better.  
  • I will stay focused on reaching a healthy weight without allowing myself to feel like a failure if I have a setback. It is time to finish the losing leg of this journey.  Officially I am 12.5 pounds lighter than the last weigh-in before the New Year last year.  I knew I could have been to goal by now, and I won't lie..I kind of wish I was.  However, I've learned something about me and my weight over the past 4-5 months (pretty much since hitting 170) and I think if I can embrace what I've observed, learn from it and put the learning into practice..I can truly finish the weight loss.  Oh, and I have done much better about not beating myself up for setbacks.  I lost weight this year.  That is victory!
  • I will run in a 5K race this year. I decided it's time to run another race. My plan is to lose more weight and in turn better my race time since I'll be carrying less weight. I'm thinking next fall will be a nice time to race. My time to beat is: 43:44  Well, I did not run a 5K race this year...I ran TWO 10K races instead.  :)  And over the course of the year I've had many 5K runs with times down around 35 minutes.  I think this is my greatest accomplishment this year.  I not only beat the 43:44 for the 5K time, but I was challenged to run double the distance and I did it.  Go me!
*whew* This year was not as bad as this past week.  The good out-measured the bad and I've come out on top.  

And that is what life is about...as one of my favorite quotes states: 
Success consists of getting up once oftener than you fall down.  

Have a safe and happy New Year's Eve and I'll be back tomorrow with some new goals for the new year.  

Oh, and as always..thanks for checking in on me.  I always appreciate the support of my friends and family through this journey.  :) 

Weigh-In ... Expected Holiday Gain

Today's Weight:  169.0
Loss/Gain:  +1.5 lbs.

Okay, first off...I meant to hop on here Friday and post this weight quick, even if I didn't have time to write anything else, but my time got away from me.  After days of being lazy I got busy again cleaning up house and preparing things for my twins' birthday.  My girls are 15 years old today!

Back to my weight...

Short Story:
I was embarrassed of my weight, but want to be honest.  This was a weird week and I overate way too much.  Now I am ready to reign things back in, so I knew the weight will come back off.  Silver Lining is I did exercise two days last week...which is better than none.

Long Story:
I must admit I almost didn't post my weight on Friday.  I was embarrassed in a way.  Not so much because of the number, but because of how I'd been eating from about Christmas Eve on.  Oh my! I texted my mom and my accountability partner/best friend, but I was like "oh my!! I'm a horrible example during the holidays!!"  So, I didn't want to post my weight.

However, one thing I have always committed to on this blog is to being honest and posting my weight every week no matter how bad or good it is.

So, there it is.  Three pounds heavier than when I started my last-100-days-of-the-year-challend, and ten pounds over where I wanted to be.  Darn.

Now, I titled this post as the "Expected Holiday Gain", but something happened this past week or so that I did not expect.

My mind went into a sort of pre-weight loss journey mode and I was eating like I used to.  There's lots of thoughts going through my mind about why this happened and maybe if I figure it out I'll come back to write more about it later.

It was just plain weird...and scary.

And it didn't even feel well.

The food--mainly junk and candy--tasted good going in, especially early in the day, but as the day progressed my stomach would begin to get upset.  Tums became my evening snack more than a few evenings.

My body is simply not into eating like I used to, but for some reason I didn't stop.  That's the part that scared me a little.

Thankfully, it has scared me enough to remember that I don't want to go back to a 232-pound inactive mom.  So, my mind is ready to get back to work eating better.

I also want to figure out what possessed me to binge like that.  I hate that word, but I think that's kind of what I was doing.  After the kids go to school I'll have more time to think and get my thoughts down and in order.  I can't help but feel like if I can figure out why I did that, then I'll be better prepared to not repeat it next year.

Oh, and I did go to the gym twice last week and once my son and husband joined me.  There's the silver lining to this cloud of mixed-up-ness.  :)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Tuesdays Unwrapped - Christmas

This post has been brewing in my mind since late Christmas Eve, but I was busy enjoying time with my family and was not able to write it until just now.  This is the last of my "Tuesdays Unwrapped" posts for the Christmas season.  

Tomorrow will be back to normal weight loss blogging.  :)  

This Christmas was wonderful for me.  It has been an absolutely crazy busy month for us and while we had fourteen extra people over for dinner on Christmas Eve we spent Christmas Day alone.  

Fun.  Quiet.  Lounging.  Eating.  Peaceful. 

It was glorious.  

We didn't have to be anywhere or do anything specific.  I prepared meals throughout the day that were simple and didn't do any major cleaning until cleaning up the kitchen after the evening meal.  

I loved it.  

More than all the lazy, lounging fun I also loved the reason for such peace in our home. 

The birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ.  

My husband and I are born again Christians.  Our devotion to Jesus and making God the head of our home is why we can all stay home and enjoy our time together.  

He is why we all want to be together on a holiday.

Not everyone's home is like this, and I'm aware of how very blessed I am that no matter what happens in my life God is in control of it all.  

We sing a swing beat worship song in our church with a verse that goes like this: 

God is greater than my problems,  greater than my fears,
He is greater than my failings and faithful through the years
He is greater than the enemy and every human plan
Every word of God will always stand

Yes, God is greater and His word will always stand.  And this Christmas I was reminded of that.  May we never forget the reason behind this season...

Friday, December 21, 2012

Weigh-In ... Enjoying Myself

Today's Weight: 167.0
Loss/Gain:  +1.5

So...my scale has been down the past couple days and then I gained two pounds last night.  Um...whatever.

This week has been busy, but not as crazy as last week and I'm grateful for that.  I've been enjoying getting some wrapping done and last night I got some baking done.  No, I did not eat two pounds worth of fudge and cinnamon roasted pecans.  lol

Anyway, so I'm not sure why the scale decided to jump today, but it is what it is.

I've had three days of great workouts and drank 64 oz of water daily.  I have not tracked my food, but instead tried to make good choices and eat more like weight loss portions.

Over the past week I've wondered a few times if I'll ever be a person who reaches for veggies and hummus instead of bread and cheese.  Hhhmm...not sure, but definitely something I'm going to work on in 2013.

I can say that I do find myself eating less than I ever did before during the holidays.  I'm much more aware of how much I'm eating, as in feeling full and learning I'm done.  I am also reminded that my body prefers less greasy foods - read: unsettled stomach after heavier meals.  blech.

So, while I shall once again not be the gold medalist of healthy eating at Christmastime I can say one thing...I am a new Leah with regards to the holidays.  I am learning to enjoy the memorable moments and not just how much extra food I get to eat.

Speaking of moments...I need to go get ready for a puppet performance my children and I are in this afternoon.  We are performing a puppet Christmas play with our church puppet team on the military base during a family fun event.  Joy!

Have a great weekend.  I hope you have fun getting the last minute items checked off your to-do lists and can find some time to relax too.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Tuesdays Unwrapped - Quality Time

Yes, I'm behind...but this was lower on the priority list than shopping, mailing, exercising, etc.  I know you understand.  :)

Years ago, when our children were about five and three years old my husband decided he would give each child $5.00 and take them one at a time Christmas shopping for their siblings at the dollar store.  Over the course of a single day he took them one by one to make their purchases and then they would come home and wrap their gifts. 

They loved the shopping and wrapping, and they especially loved getting to keep the change.  I loved being at home and watching each one return to the house with their treasures and then come out of the bedroom, wrapped gifts in hand, and place their gifts under the tree.  They were always so excited!

As they grew older I  began a chart for each child and they started earning their Christmas shopping money by doing extra chores around the house.  The first chart had boxes worth twenty five cents each and I would say things like, "Will you put this in the other room for Mommy?  You can mark a box off on your chart!"  They would gladly do extra little things around the house to earn their money.  

Then payday would come and they would go out on their little shopping trips with Papi to purchase something for their siblings.  Our hope was to teach them to be giving at Christmastime and to also learn how wonderful it feels to know you paid for your gifts all by yourself.  

Time has past, the gifts are more than a dollar now, but the tradition continues.  While this fall and Christmas season have been the busiest one we've seen in a long time the kids have managed to find some time to do a few extra chores around.  My son did some weeding and extra yard work, one of my daughters did extra kitchen cleanup one busy day and her twin sister polished all my silverware for Thanksgiving dinner.  

This year I took each of the kids out on the shopping trips because my husband has been busy with military responsibilities taking him out of town, or preparing to leave out of town.  I've taken them out on three different evenings.  

We start with a trip to Starbucks for a drink, coffee for me and a hot chocolate for them, and then we head out to the stores.  We've enjoyed chatting while we shopped, running into folks we know at different stores and just spending time together. 

What I'll remember forever about this year's shopping adventures is how each trip I was able to learn a little more about each one of my children individually.  It's interesting the topics that came up and how each one of them shared in their own unique ways about their daily life.  

They are growing up, these kids of mine.  I've written in many a Christmas card this year that I've traded changing diapers and chasing toddlers for driving my kids all over the place.  And while there are moments I miss them as little ones I am greatly enjoying the young people they are becoming.

Now, more than ever, I'm also grateful for these little bits of quality time I'm able to spend with each of them.  I'm also grateful that they want to spend it with me.  

Some day they will grow up and begin lives of their own away from our nest.  I know it won't be easy to let them go, but I also know I'll always have these memories to treasure forever.

Read more Tuesdays Unwrapped here.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Weigh-In ... Maxed Out

Today's Weight:  165.5
Loss/Gain:  -2.0 lbs.

I think I've reached my holiday limit of extra curricular activities for the year.  :)  I'm not overly booked, but I'm at my limit for 2012.

If anyone asks, "Ms. Leah can you..." I have no problem saying, "No." as of today.  :) 

I'm saying all of this because the extra busy hustle and bustle going on around here this year finally lead me to a point I didn't want to hit with regards to my healthiness journey. 

I have not exercised since Monday.  That is not to say I haven't been on the go, on my feet and staying busy all day, but I had to make a conscious decision to let the gym slide for a day or two..or three to complete some Christmastime projects.  

That is to say, to complete them and not let my house go to pot.  I've learned that if I'm busy staying involved in things and my house goes to pot I become a stressed out wreck, and none of the events I'm involved with are worth that kind of craziness.  

I don't regret skipping the gym.  I miss that I didn't exercise, but I have been so productive getting things done these last three days that it was worth the sacrifice.  Plus, it made me be even more careful about my eats, because I knew I wasn't burning all kinds of cardio calories. 

Which is where I go back to by weigh-in.  165.5 oh how I've missed you!  

With about two weeks left in 2012 I most likely will not hit 159, so I've decided if I can at least finish down near my lowest weight of 164 I will be content.  This week I ended up dealing with lots of stuff I put off doing (see procrastination post below..) so I couldn't get to the gym; however, next week I should be able to make it at least 3 days.  

This is an ongoing journey, and Christmastime is part of the journey.  As always, I'm not giving up, but giving in to the reality of where I'm at right now. 

So, now I leave you with two things I finished this week (that I wanted done the first weekend of December..lol) that I'm totally thrilled with.  

Have a wonderful weekend and thank you all for checking in.  I am truly blessed by the friendly support of blogland friends.  :)

Note: Credit and tutorials for wreaths:

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Tuesdays Unwrapped - Procrastination

I spent a good part of my day today cleaning my mini blinds.  Mini blinds are a blessing and a curse all at once.  While they do work well in blocking sun and keeping prying eyes out at night, I don't care for them.  And quite honestly, they are really the one thing I hate cleaning. 

Which is why I spent hours that could've been better spent finishing up Christmas cards, or cleaning up craft clutter, or finishing Christmas decorating, or baking cookies for a cookie drop at the base, but instead...

...I was dipping my hands in this bucket with soapy water and bleach. 

Because I procrastinated.

I knew they needed cleaning back in the summer, but I didn't do it.

I really wanted to do a deep fall cleaning before Thanksgiving and company arriving, but I didn't make time for it. 

Now, I'm hosting a party and am thoroughly disgusted by my dusty blinds, so I'm forced to take time away from other more fun activities to do my least favorite chore.  In the middle of Christmas.  :(

And all day I've been thinking about how I am going to post this as my "Tuesdays Unwrapped" post because procrastination is a problem for me and sometimes it threatens to ruin my holidays if I don't plan ahead.  

It's where I'm at today.

Where I'm also at is finally sitting down to write this post and feeling like an idiot.

Because when I checked at the original blog where I got the idea I was reminded that I'm not just supposed to share the "lovely, messy and unexpected..", but I'm supposed to share in a way that unwraps a special moment.

Um, folks, there's nothing special about stressing out about the to-do's because I procrastinated on a cleaning job.  Which has all been made worse because nothing really got done yesterday as planned, so I kind of lost those hours as well.  Plus, all day I kept thinking about how procrastination is a horrible trait when trying to lose weight, because it drags the losing process on and on when you put off sticking to the plan.

That doesn't make for a warm fuzzy post.

However, I was reminded that procrastinating doesn't help anything, ever.

And as I sit and ponder this post, rewriting, tweaking, etc.  I'm also reminded that everything will get done.  *deep cleansing breath*  

The house doesn't have to be perfect for the party.  
The food is planned and will all get made on time.
About 99% of my Christmas shopping is done.
The bills are paid.
My family is safe and sound.

And...my blinds look lovely...even if the rest of the house is a mess right now.  The hard work did pay off.

'Nite.  :)

Friday, December 7, 2012

Weigh-In ... Keeping My Priorities Straight

Today's Weight: 167.5
Loss/Gain:  -1.0

Yay!  I'm not up!! Good thing, because my emotional self needed something positive this morning.  Oh, it's nothing more than...yep...TOM.

Earlier this week I was like, "Why can I not get myself together and back in to weight-loss mode??"  Sheesh.  Um, now I know.  I should've known because of the craving for soda and chocolate earlier in the week.  *rolling eyes*  Hello...that's my cue.  lol 

Despite the PMS I was more conscious to get my water in, track my food most days and I completed my 4th workout of the week this morning.  It's not always easy, but I'm really trying to enjoy the hustle and bustle of holiday preparations while keeping my priorities straight. 

This involves planning and preparation. 

This holiday season is one of the busiest our family has seen in a while due to my daughters being in basketball, my son playing indoor soccer and a few Christmas production practices going on throughout the week that we're all in involved in.  Every evening is full of something, so that means my crafting, shopping, party planning, wrapping, baking, mailing, etc. etc. needs to pretty much get done during the daytime.  

With all this going on I have found myself over this past week constantly keeping a running checklist in my mind of what needs to be done and by when.  Over the past years it's been easy to push my exercise to the side during December, and I honestly don't criticize anyone who does this time of year; however, I've found for me that when I start my day out taking care of my spiritual and physical self properly I feel much better. 

So, I have made a conscious choice that I will stick to my devotional time and then my gym time as soon as I get home from taking the kids to school.  Maybe I won't get as much done each day as I hoped, or maybe it means I am going to be going constantly all day and not be able to rest until late in the evening, but I will make sure to do it.  

And you know [insert contented sigh] I feel so much better for it.  Now off to clean my floors and check that off today's to-do list!  

Thanks for stopping by!  Oh, and feel free to share how you keep your health a priority during this time of year.  

Have a great weekend! 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Tuesdays Unwrapped - One Day They'll Be Gone

I came across a blog with this great idea for taking a moment out of each busy holiday week to stop and unwrap the gifts around us that can not be placed under a Christmas tree.

It's called Tuesdays Unwrapped and I'm going to take a moment and break away from my weight loss posts and share a Tuesdays Unwrapped post with you every Tuesday from now til Christmas. 

That being said my unwrapped moment is summed up in this photo, (which my husband and son are both asking why on earth I took a picture of the mess in the living room?? lol) 

I took this picture as a reminder to myself that the people who left these things lying around won't always be in my home.  Yes, it's a mess and it can drive me crazy at times, but it's a mess left by the ones I love the most.  

So, while my instinct is to think, "I have so much to do today without having to pick up after everyone!!!" today I'm choosing to pause, be grateful for my husband and children, because there will be moments in the future that I'll wish there was something to pick up, or someone living here to holler at to pick up their things.  :)

Want to see more Tuesdays Unwrapped?  Click here.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Motivational Monday - This Could Be A Problem

Lately I'm having this problem with my wedding ring: 
With the colder weather comes colder fingers and my ring often slides sideways or upside down.

No, I'm not sad, and no it's not so big that it shakes off easily...yet.  Periodically I check to see if it fits on my middle finger, because I remember when my mom lost a bunch of weight once and had to wear her ring on her middle finger until she could get it resized.  :) 

Not yet..but soon! 

And this is one of those little things that motivates me to keep working on my weight loss. 

Friday, November 30, 2012

Weigh-In ... A Gain & Two Things

Today's Weight:  168.5
Loss/Gain: +2.0 since last Thursday, but -2.0 since last Friday.

As my mom said, "Happy Holidays, huh?" Sigh...yes.   Needless to say I wasn't "on track" over Thanksgiving and the only silver lining on that cloud of gain is that I am down from last Friday.  Unfortunately, I'm having a bit of a time getting back on track and am worried about my Finish Strong challenge. 

I am one month away from the finish and I've actually gained a couple pounds since the beginning of the challenge.  *rolling eyes*  Sheesh.  *shamefully shaking head*

But instead of getting depressed I want to share two things today:

1)  Thank you to my fellow bloggers who commented and encouraged me to keep pressing towards my seemingly impossible weight goal.  I have been discussing with a good friend about how a girl I know has put some weight back on (after reaching a healthy weight) and keeps mentioning that she thinks she's just good at that weight and it makes me want to justify not losing any more myself.  

I think this girl might be about where I'm at now - if we did a heigh:weight ratio, so it's been almost like an excuse for me, because I find myself thinking, "Well, if she feels fine and is staying active, then why should I try and lose more??"  However, like I said earlier this week I know my eating is not where it needs to be and thus I can not allow myself to make excuses about reaching a healthy weight.  

So, I won't give up and I know I must press on.  

Which leads me to my next thought...

2)  Wednesday I had my physical assessment with the trainer at the gym.  The results were amazing to me and reminded me of how far I've come and why I want to continue towards my healthy weight.

Okay, well, honestly...they were another reason I could see why the girl I mentioned above might not worry about getting back to a healthy weight...when you've seen yourself come so far you almost don't feel the need to continue. 

The trainer doesn't know my story, but I do and so I was very pleased to see these this information on my assessment printout: 

My "body age" registered at:  31  ,  but I'm really 36.  
My body fat percentage: 20.3 ...and fell in the "optimal" range
Max VO2 (cardiovascular testing):  67.7  ...or at the top of "Very Good" .. next level being "Elite"
My overall fitness fell 2/3 towards the top of "Good"..next level was excellent and the top of the chart.


In GOOD fitness shape and with a body fat percentage in a good range...with 25 pounds left to lose?  

You know I understand the need to get to at least the high end of a healthy weight and thus the need to stay focused and keep working on weight loss, but it felt really good to see on paper Wednesday that I'm no longer the couch potato, overweight mom who never thought she'd be "like those people" who were healthy.  

So, I still need to lose more weight.  I will.  But for today, and in the face of this yucky holiday gain, I feel good and I resolve to do my best to complete my Finish Strong challenge and ... well... finish strong.  

As always, no matter what... I won't quit.  Thanks for checking in on me.  

Happy Friday!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Maybe I Should Feel Ugly and Fat?

So, after posting yesterday I also had another thought about how the taller lady feels so fat and ugly and I'm about the same size, but don't feel fat and ugly.

Maybe I need to feel just a little ugly and fat..just enough to urge myself to finish the weight loss already.  I'm kind of joking, but kind of serious here.

Three-and-a-half years and 65 pounds lost and I feel so good right now. 

I can run 3 miles like no big deal, I'm in a comfy size 14 and I get complimented on how small I am.

But I'm thinking this is the flip side to loving yourself. 

Just like I realized ten extra pounds and nine months later after reading the article by Geneen Roth that loving myself doesn't mean allowing myself to eat whatever and whenever and however much I want, I need to realize I am still not a healthy weight.

Yes, I'm healthier.

But I'm too close to being obese to settle.  I need to finish up what I've started. 

Trust me, my not losing more weight is not because my body isn't responding to diet and exercise anymore.  It's because I still eat more calories than I burn on a regular basis.  

*openly honest moment here*

I haven't eaten like I'm trying to lose weight for a bit now and I know it.  I have good moments - meals or even a day or two - but well....I know I can do better. 

I decided last week that I wasn't going to quit my Finish Strong challenge, but I've had the darndest time getting back into the healthy-eating-and-weight-loss-portions groove.

And then my phone rang on Monday.  

"Are you still interested in a personal trainer?," she said.  

"Oh yes.", I said and then almost laughed because of where I'm at right now.

So, today I have an appointment with her for an assessment.  The gym I go to on the base offers a free personal trainer for six weeks to help you figure out a good routine that works with your needs and fitness/health goals.  

I'm thinking it's just the push I need to get back on track.  

She said she'll be checking my body fat percentage and the like...yep, I'll feel just fat enough to remind myself that I'm still not a healthy weight.   Okay, well, I've felt that fat often enough...but now someone else is going to see it and remind me that I can do better.  Yikes.

But you know what...it couldn't have come at a better time and I'm grateful, because being honest with ones self is also love.  Facing the facts is love.  And I'm going to love myself right over to that trainer and figure out how to get back on track.

I'll let you know how it goes.  :)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

But I Don't Feel Ugly or Fat

So, the other day I was perusing some new-to-me weight loss blogs and I came across a lady who was sick of how fat she was.  As she was beginning her weight loss journey and blog she bemoaned the excess fat on her body and vented about how disgusted she was with herself.  

If I remember correctly, as of that post she was 5' 8" and 185.5 pounds.  

Um, I'm about 20 pounds lighter and a full 4 inches shorter.  So, basically I'm about the same size or even bigger than this person.  And, well, trust me...my body doesn't look as thin as hers in my underthings. 

But I don't feel ugly or fat.  

Now, I understand it sounds like she is at her highest weight and I'm at my adult lowest right now, so we are looking at this size from two very different angles.  However, the self hatred that came across in her post reminded me of an issue I've seen in the weight loss world since I began my journey that saddens me. 

Over the years I have watched women verbally abuse themselves about how fat they have gotten.  They are disgusted with how they've let themselves go and put on so much weight.   

Many of them are motivated by that disgust to do something about the weight.  However, more times than not I see women get to the goal weight and they still don't like what they see.  

The self loathing that prompted them to lose weight is still there.  

Sometimes a small amount of weight creeps back on and the loathing begins again; or some constantly chase the strictest diet or exercise regimen in the hopes of getting that perfectly flat stomach, etc. etc.

They've reached a healthy weight, but they still can't love themselves as they are.  

And I find it all very sad. 

You see, I remember an article* I read the summer before I started my weight loss journey wherein the author said a person deserves to love his or herself "even if you never lose another pound".  I remember I looked in my bedroom mirror and realized I couldn't truly say I loved myself the way I was - 5'4" and 220 pounds - and I decided then to try and accept who I was, as I was.  It was hard, but I worked on it.

To this day I truly feel letting go of that self loathing was the real beginning of my journey.

So, to this lady, and all those like her, let me encourage you to learn to love yourself as you are.  Self acceptance will make the journey to lose weight a little bit easier.  And in then end you'll be happier because you'll not only feel strong and confident for succeeding in your weight loss journey, but you'll feel content because you've come to accept the body God gave you...imperfections and all. 

*True Kindness Has No Calories by Geneen Roth for Good Housekeeping Magazine

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Running Discrepancy

Ever have that feeling something is too good to be true, and then you find out it is?  

Well, I've enjoyed hearing my Nike+ tell me on my runs that I'm averaging a 9:20 - 9:30 minute mile, but I've just been so surprised...and wondered if it was true, because I just didn't think / couldn't believe I was that fast. and chalked it up to cold weather running.

So, today I wore my Garmin on my run to compare.  The times were the same, but the distances were not.  And my gut instinct seems to be correct. 

My Nike+ on my iPhone said I ran this today: 

But my Garmin said this (bottom right is distance): 

To figure out who was closer to the correct distance I took my car out and drove the path I ran and the odometer came out with this: 
So, it appears my Garmin is correct and the Nike+ GPS is not, which would explain why the Nike+ has this option: 
Edit my run?  I thought the whole point of having this app was to have the Nike+ tell me how far I ran, not for me to program it.  :(

Needless to say I'm a bit sad, but not surprised.  In the races I've ran I used my Garmin and my time/distance is usually only seconds different than the race timing chip clocks me at. 

My main upset is that I bragged about my fastest 5K on Thanksgiving morning, which is probably not true.  I'm still around a 33 minute 5K.

Oh well...That's okay..it just doesn't sound as good as less than 30 minutes did.  :) 

Has anyone else had this problem?  I'm going to look into it further and even email Nike+ people and see if I can find out if there is something I'm supposed to do to correct this issue.  

I'll keep you posted if I hear back from them. 

In the meantime, it was a beautiful day to run today and I enjoyed it immensely.  :)

Friday, November 23, 2012

Weigh-In ... The Thankful Healthy Blogger 5K

Today's Weight:  Yesterday morning I was 166.5.  I was not that this morning, as expected.

I've decided not to post a regular weigh-in post this Friday.  Instead you can read about how I was feeling about my Finish Strong challenge here, and I'll share with you a new Thanksgiving activity I took part in this year.

After posting the other day I decided to commit to participating in this:
So, I planned ahead, got a few things done early and made sure I had time to get up and run before getting started on Thanksgiving preparations.
You'll notice I beat my 5K time from Tuesday...and came in at under 30 minutes...for the first time ever!! I was super excited about that!!!

Even more fun was that I had talked my friend, Sarah, into running Thanksgiving morning as well.  Since she lives on the other side of the country from me she texted me when she finished her run.
She took a picture too, proof that she was running.

While I did eat more than normal (or like normal overeating on Thanksgiving) I started my day out with activity and it felt great.

Have a nice weekend!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thankfully Not Quitting

I can hardly believe it's the day before Thanksgiving and the official start of the Christmas season.  It seems too soon!  I don't even feel "in the mood" for it, though my house is cleaned, the laundry is almost caught up and I have all the fixings ready to prepare the traditional Thanksgiving feast tomorrow. 

So, what's a girl to do when she doesn't feel quite in the spirit of the days?  She sits down and blogs, blogs to the people who have come along her journey and supported her no matter how imperfect she is.  

You see, one of the reasons I am not "feeling it" is because I've been failing at my Finish Strong challenge and that negative feeling is lurking behind all of the wonderful things going on in my life.  It's bothering me so much so that I want to quit...and yet I don't. 

Because one major thing I've learned on this three-and-a-half-year-long weight loss journey is I'm not a quitter.  I may quit in moments, but overall I will not give up. 

Yesterday I told myself that no one would blame me if I came on here and posted that my challenge just wasn't going to work out too well this year, so I decided to stop it.  I know people would understand.  

But I thought to myself, "Do you want to quit, or do you want to make yourself get back on track and do your best to finish strong?"


Yes, because the goal is to finish strong, and that doesn't always mean every step is perfect along the way.  

Maybe I went on vacation with the full intention of exercising at least 4 days that week, and only exercised two days. 

Maybe I haven't been eating the healthiest foods, or in weight loss portions every day.

Maybe I'm not reaching 64 oz. of water drunken daily. 

Maybe I'm remembering that this weight thing isn't easy, no matter how long you work at it.

BUT - comma - ...HOWEVER,

I am forcing myself to remember something else, something totally spectacular for me this week. 

Yesterday, while feeling like a bit of a loser, I made time to go out for a jog.  I decided I'd make it a quick 3 miles, or even just 30 minutes.  No rush for a quick pace, just a jog.  My Garmin was dying, so I used the Nike+ (free) app on my new iPhone to track my distance and time.  As I ran along I heard, "Mile 1, Your average pace is 9 minutes 42 seconds" 


I just kept going....enjoying the beauty of autumn leaves and brisk air.  Then I heard, "Mile 2.  Nineteen minutes and 28 seconds (or something like that). Your average pace is 9 minutes 38 seconds. (again, approximately)" 

You know that last mile of the run was wonderful as I realized I was running a sub-10 minute pace.  I've dreamt of the day I could run a 5K at a 10-minute pace...well, I finished up my run clocking in ....

3.65 miles in 34 minutes and 36 seconds....averaging a 9:28 pace.  

This is a personal best for me, and I didn't even feel like I pushed myself hard.  I just went and did it.  

Yea, I'm not the perfect weight loss example and I have many more shortcomings than some very health-conscious friends of mine when it comes to eating and exercise, but I am improving.  For every little bit I fall back I push forward a little harder, and the outcome is progress.  

I may not be at my goal weight yet, but I am in the best shape of my adult life.  

So, my grandparents are coming into town tomorrow for two days to spend Thanksgiving with us and I know I may be over my calorie budget for the days, but I am determined that after the family leaves it's back to the challenge for me.  I will do my best to get down to 159 by the end of the year, and if I don't?

I'll keep going.  I won't give up.  

I know one can get tired of hearing it, but it took many years of neglect to get to my highest weight, so as long as I keep going in the opposite direction I'm choosing to be okay with that.  I'm also choosing to be thankful for the progress I've made and to enjoy every moment along the way.  

Please know I've not fallen into the depths of despair over this.  It's just something that's been nagging me and I really didn't want to unload on any one person.  Since this concern is completely weight related I wanted to journal it instead.  So, later when someone tells me how vexed they are I can say, "Oh, you should read a post I wrote back...I've been there and it's okay."  

Plus, I know my reader friends will understand, and that's another thing I'm thankful for.  I know I'm not alone in this journey.  

Now, I leave you with some beauty I've been blessed to look at every day recently as I go to and from my house.  These trees line the street entering our neighborhood.  They only stay this color for a week or two, and I enjoy every minute of their autumn glory.  

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Monday, November 19, 2012


Well, I was going to post this yesterday, but I was not feeling well at all.  My stomach was upset and I don't do nausea well.   I have no idea what happened, but I'm feeling a bit better today.  

The fun non-scale victory story goes like this....
Sunday I wanted to put on my lounge pants, but they were dirty.  So, I tried my husband's and  THEY FIT!! I was so thrilled I tried on his t-shirt too.  It also fit.  

I was just a little tickled.  :)  My daughter took my phone and took some pictures for me doing the happy dance that I fit comfortably in his clothes.  It was silly, but I was super excited because I never have fit into his stuff like this before.  

Sometimes you have to celebrate...
....even when you're 25 lbs away from your goal...
...that has taken forever to reach...

Friday, November 16, 2012

My Brother Joel

Good morning and Happy Friday!  I don't have a weigh-in post to share with you today since I'm still out of town til tomorrow.  However, I do have something exciting to share regarding weight....

As I said, I'm currently visiting my brother, my one and only sibling.   He and his wife just had their first baby...darling Miss Lucy.  (See pics from earlier post this week)  It has been a nice week of holding the little one, hanging out and seeing some changes in my brother.  Namely changes in the way he eats.  

The biggest change I see is if he's still full from a large lunch he'll eat a light dinner.  He has said a couple of times this week, "No thanks, I'm not that hungry."  His choice of foods is a little different too.  He eats Lara bars and has had them on hand for me to try.  This is all due to the fact that he is on a weight loss journey of his own.  

The funny thing to me is that he just kind of started doing this and I didn't even know about it.  He knows I've been working on losing weight, but we don't really discuss the subject much.  He mentioned losing some weight a few months ago and then I saw some pictures and was both amazed and inspired by his success.  So, I asked him if I could interview him for my blog. 

When I read his interview answers I was so encouraged about his approach to weight loss.  It's real.  It's something he can sustain forever.  Read on and I know you'll agree.  

So, Joel : 

How much weight have you lost? 
I've lost 50 lbs.
How long did it take (is taking, if applicable)?
I've lost that weight over the past 11months.
When did you first feel, or realize, you had a weight problem? 
I've always been unhappy with my size, probably since I was a teenager.
What made you want to do something about your weight?

It's a complex set of ideas and attitudes that cause a person to lose control of their health and it takes facing that and working through that to turn things around. There were a lot of things that were finally falling in to place for me, but I think there was one event that really triggered something in me and that was not being able to find anything that fit at Target. True story. I think going into Target and realizing that they don't make shirts and pants that are big enough was a small spark that lit a big fire.
How did you decide to get healthier?  A diet? Exercise only? 
I needed to find a way to eat healthier. I've done exercise-only before, but that didn't deal with the root cause, which was skewed idea of the role of food in my life.
Was it easy or hard to begin making the changes necessary to be healthy? 
It's never easy to make a change like that. 
Did you have a support?  Wife? Kids? Peers?
My wife was very supportive of me. I also have friends and co-workers who were very encouraging.
What has been the hardest thing about losing weight? 
Breaking bad habits. Over the years food had taken on an unhealthy level of importance. Reversing that trend was, is, difficult.
Has their been an easy part of losing weight? 
Not really.
Do you see any difference in attempting to lose weight as a man, versus women working on weight loss?  
I think biologically men don't have quite as difficult a time shedding pounds. That said, there is a cultural norm that disparages men eating smaller portions and salads as being feminine. This is especially true for guys like me who over time developed a reputation for being a big eater.
Please share a tip or two with us that you've learned, or a tip that has made the most impact on your weight loss.
Being healthy doesn't mean carrots and work-outs the rest of your life. Its all about balance and moderation; quality over quantity.

And because I know we all like to see the visual proof, here's he is.  I'm stealing a little of his glory, but that's only because I happen to be visiting him this week as well.  So, of course I wanted to snap a picture of us together.  :)  

Here we are at his wedding in March 2009 and this week.  

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Being Careful on Vacation

I find I'm having to be careful on vacation by not eating too much, but also of not thinking or feeling too much.  Today someone finished a post by asking,"What are you working on today?" and I replied:

Today I'm working on not feeling guilty for choosing to hold my new niece on vacation instead of go for a walk/run. I'm visiting and keep reminding myself that after  this week I don't know when I'll see her again, but the gym and neighborhood (for running) will be there waiting for me next week.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Meeting My New Niece

I have not been blogging, or reading blogs, because I am out of town visiting my brother and his family.  I'm enjoying my days holding precious Lucy and hanging out with my sister-in-law.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Weigh-In .. Finish Strong Update #3 (or not)

Today's Weight:  167.5
Loss/Gain:  + 2.0 lbs

(Pardon the TMI...)
Welcome Aunt Flo.  Yes, I was happy to see her arrival because otherwise I would have no reason why I was so emotional for a couple days and why I couldn't seem to get enough chocolate and not care one tidbit about eating for weight loss.

Yesterday morning I thought I wasn't due for my monthly until next week and I was wondering what the heck was going on.  Then she arrived and all was right in my world again.  The trend for me is to PMS and then right about when I start the emotions are good again and the need for chocolate dwindles back down to somewhat normal proportions.  Whew!

So...let's add to that no exercise and you have a gain.

Part of me feels I should be upset about this, but I'm not so much and here's why.

It's my monthly.  It happens.

This is the week I knew I wouldn't exercise because I've been busy from sun up to sun down helping and participating in a Bible conference at our church.  Literally, the most sitting I've done all week is in the car taxying my kids to and from school and in the church seminars.  That's it.

So, instead of an official update on my Finish Strong challenge because I didn't get the other things done perfect either
I'm going to leave you with two NSVs (non-scale victories) from this week:

  • There was a donut break at the morning seminars and I didn't have one.  They served fruit as well and I had fruit and one day had a cheese stick with mine.  Obviously, I had the chocolate and other junk, but that is why I refrained from the donuts.  I knew I'd had enough.  

  • Yesterday my daughter tells me this, "Last year at conference I was so tired, but this week hasn't been so bad.  I think it's because of basketball practice every afternoon."  Yes!!!  She realized that exercise gives you more energy!! It was a happy moment.  
I hope you have a good day.  We're very excited everyone is off on Monday for Veteran's Day so we can recoup from our busy week.  

Have a good day, and thanks for checking in!!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Meet Dave

Yes, it's Monday and yes, I do have a motivating story to share with you.  :)

A little over a month or so I received a text from a friend of mine that went something like this, "I know he doesn't really want the attention, but I just have to brag..Dave has lost 100 pounds as of today!" 

I knew my friend's husband had been trying to lose some weight, but since we don't live near each other I had no idea just how much he'd been losing.  It was such good news to hear.  My friend has been on weight loss journeys with me in the past and we've both talked about how it would be a little easier if our husbands would get on board with regards to eating better.  

And he did. 

Plus,  he finally agreed to let me interview him for my blog.  We did this email style and his wife sent the pictures.

So, without further ado, please meet Dave ... 

How much weight have you lost?
I have lost a total of 100lbs. I started out at 347 and am now 247

How long did it take (is taking, if applicable)?
It has taken me a year

When did you first feel, or realize, you had a weight problem?
I have always been a big guy but got real serious about losing weight in July 2011

What made you want to do something about your weight?
 I was feeling more and more lethargic and went to the doctor. My blood pressure was way to high due to the excess weight and lack of exercise. I was put on high blood pressure medication. I went to the doctor for monthly check ups and after 2 months of medication and losing some weight I was taken off the medication. Once I lost some weight I started to have more energy and feel better.

How did you decide to get healthier? A diet? Exercise only?
Eliminating the 2 or 3 44oz sodas that I drank every day. As well as diet and exercise. Changing what I ate. Not really a diet. But changing my eating habits. And exercising. At first I could only ride the bike for 15 mins and each time it started to get easier. I ride now every other day for an hour.
Was it easy or hard to begin making the changes necessary to be healthy?
Once I had it set in my mind it was fairly easy. There is always some temptations to eating things you shouldn't but once my mind was made up it was easier.
Did you have a support? Wife? Kids? Peers?
It was something that I really decided to tackle alone but I certainly had support from my wife with meals and playing games with me while I exercised. But having it in my mind that this was something I wanted to do it was what I wanted to do.
What has been the hardest thing about losing weight?
Patience. It something that takes time to see results.
Has there been an easy part of losing weight?
Once you find a exercise that fits your needs it soon becomes easy. I found that the exercise bike was something that was somewhat easy for me. Something that didn't hurt my knees. I have had 2 knee surgerys.
Do you see any difference in attempting to lose weight as a man, versus women working on weight loss? 
 I think for men it's a much easier thing to do alone. I necessarly don't want or need to talk about it. But for women they feel they need a friend to go through it with. To have that support. Women need to talk, men don't.
Please share a tip or two with us that you've learned, or a tip that has made the most impact on your weight loss.
I'm sure that everyone is different but for me embrace the scale. Most people weigh once a week. But for me I weigh myself 4 times a day. When I got up, before I exercised, after I exercise, and before I go to bed. For me it helps me keep myself on track. Find a exercise that works for you, something that you enjoy. You shouldn't hate your exercise.

Dave, thank you for allowing me to share your story on my blog, and a big CONGRATULATIONS on your weight loss!!! 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Weigh-In ... Staying Focused

Today's Yesterday's Weight:  165.5
Loss/Gain:  +/- 0

We had an unexpected family emergency and I ended up driving my sister-in-law to the airport yesterday morning to go care for my mother-in-law.  All will be fine, but it was not into my plans for the day (of which there were many because I'm readying for company and a very busy week next week.)

So, I didn't post yesterday, nor did I exercise.

Speaking of didn't do's ...

  • I want to break 160 on the scale.  I want to see 159 or lower.  Started at 166.0.  I maintained this week.   Still 0.5 of 7 down.
Sub goals:
  • Exercise 4 days a week minimum, shoot for two days of running and two days of something else.  Runs can be 30-35 minutes, but everything else 45-60 minutes.  Only exercised 3 days this week.  I am adjusting this goal to 30-45 minutes of exercise, instead of 45-60.  It's just more realistic for my hectic life.
  • Track food, even if over calorie budget.  Only tracked half the week.
  • Drink minimum of 64 oz. water daily.  I think I did this the best this week. Some evenings I was sipping water like crazy getting that second 32 oz. bottle down, just because I knew I had this goal.  :) 
As I told my friend yesterday.  I was very busy and didn't make myself focus enough on my goals to lose any weight this week.  While I'm glad to know I didn't gain weight, I need to focus a little more.

This is a very busy time of year and the reason I started this challenge for myself was to be reminded that I need to keep my health a priority.  I don't think my goals are unrealistic.  And I do think I can do it.  Every day I need to remind myself that on top of taking care of every other commitment in my life I need to keep this one.  

I will enjoy the holidays, and that will include enjoying the knowledge that I finished out 2012 strong and healthy.  :)

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Not A Costume

As I was running today at the gym I was thinking about how today is Halloween and kiddies will be coming to the door all dressed up in costumes and I had a sudden inspiration for a Halloween post for today.  

Because this outfit....

..is not a costume.  

It is an outfit similar to what I wear at least four days a week.  Yes, I love sweats and hoodies and comfy clothes, but I don't wear sweats or yoga pants just because they are comfy.  

I wear them to workout.  For real.  

And that is something that made me smile as I pushed myself and ran 3.1 in 32:18 with a 1% incline.  


Monday, October 29, 2012

A Baking Strategy

Good morning!

The "Motivational Mondays" were fun, but I don't want to make that what I do all the time here.  So on to a regular post.

This past weekend was full of baking.  Our church had a 3-night event and had asked for the ladies to bring baked goods to go with the refreshments.  So, Friday I made brownies.  Saturday I made my grandmother's recipe for a white cake-like cookie.  And yesterday I made pumpkin cookies, with and without chocolate chips.  

My house has smelled good, and I did okay with all that baking happening.  In fact, I figured out what I  told my friend yesterday will be my baking strategy for this holiday season. 

I will bake .... 

And, like yesterday, this much will be given away...

and this much (the large baggie on left) will be kept for the family to enjoy.  

It also works to make a single batch of cookies, instead of doubling and tripling like I used to do for years.  Then I could give some away, but still have plenty for the house.   

Yes, I think I have a plan.  I may still have to deal with the temptation of walking by that one baggie of cookies, but at least it won't be so many that I'll fall into the they'll-never-notice-if-I-eat-one-or-two trap.    

I can also allow myself one cookie and make sure I figure it into my daily calorie allowance; but again there won't be so many hanging around for days to tempt me to eat too many.  

Yes, I think this will work out nicely.  I can scratch my baking itch, but not eat it all too.  All things in moderation. :)