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

Thursday, February 28, 2013

I'm Still Alive

Hello!  I'm not dead and I haven't quit...I've just been busy this week in a way that I'm keeping my house picked up and things in order, but to do that I've not gotten around to blogland.  I haven't exercised much this week either.  And I've eaten snacks more times than necessary for weight loss.

And it's okay. 

If you've followed my journey for any amount of time you already know I'm not one of those "I eat on plan and workout every day no matter what is going on in my life." type of gals.  I'm more of a "If I weigh less today than I did a year ago I'm okay with it." kind of lady.  At least this week it has been that way.  :)

My husband has been off a couple of days and we've enjoyed spending some time with him.  We've also had revival services at our church every night this week, which means homework and daily life need to be taken care of by about 6:00 every evening.  

Add to that some unexpected occurences this week and I'm just glad to be sane and in my right mind...with a picked up house to keep me from going crazy. 

So, I'll be back tomorrow with my weigh-in and hopefully have some time to catch up on blog reading.

Thanks for stopping by! 
(found this on Pinterest...while looking for various party ideas for two events coming up in Spring.)

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Weigh-In ... Proud Mama

Today's Weight:  164.0
Loss/Gain:  -3.0 lbs

My husband and I are going out of town tonight, so I thought I'd post my weight a day early.  

Whee!  I earned this loss.  I've upped my water intake, tracked my calories and stayed within budge more than not.  

For my efforts I get to join my mom in losing 3 pounds this week.  :)  Yep, my mom and dad are working on getting healthier and we check in with each other weekly.  It's so good to see them working together on this as well. 

Speaking of family working together on health...

The other day I was so proud of my kids.  We've had some discussions in recent months about their need for exercise too.  They have physical education class at school and they all play sports, but none of that lasts for the entire year.  So, I told my girls they need to have a plan to stay active after basketball season ends -- 30 mins a day after school at least 3-4 days a week.  And my husband told my son he needs to do some exercise on the days he doesn't have soccer practice -- also 30 minutes.  

My husband helped my son find an activity that he would like, and I offered for my girls to do any of my DVDs and maybe take them to the park to play basketball when my son has soccer practice.  

Well, they are doing it.  The other day the girls asked me if they could do one of my Jillian Michaels DVDs and they did it together.  My son has also been taking the time to do his Nike+ Xbox Kinnect game three days a week.  

I was so proud of them all working out the other day that I took some pictures: 

It's such an awesome feeling to know that my kids are willing to put some thought and time into their health, because I really do think (not to be prideful, but..) I do think it's in part because of what they've seen me accomplish.  

And you know, maybe that's not it at all, but I'm so glad to know that when they are doing this I'm not sitting in the other room sad because I'm overweight and feeling helpless to do anything about it. 

I never felt bad for not being able to play sports with my kids when they were little.  I was contented to watch them and be grateful they had their father's active genes.  But now I'm glad to know that I too have my time to workout and when they tell me how sore they are the next day I can relate and encourage them that it will all pay off.  

This is one more benefit of losing weight and getting healthier -- watching my children follow the example.  Hip! Hip! Hooray!

Have a good day folks and I will check back in with you later.  

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Running Motivation

I'm into my second week of my 10K training and after finishing up my 6 mile run on Saturday, and not feeling like I was dying, I was so amazed.  I had a girl tell me she loved my collage and couldn't wait until she would like her running.  

If you ever would've told me I'd be excited to see running quotes and posters, or pushing myself to run hills on the treadmill to train to be faster ... oh, five years ago, I would've laughed at you.  Even when I liked to take aerobics classes in high school I opted for speed walking because I hated running.  

It was so hard. 

But I've caught the bug and now I love how it makes me feel.  I also love that my some miracle I don't hate myself if I'm not the fastest one out there.  Slowly but surely my speed is increasing and the progress motivates me that I'm doing my best and that's all that matters. 

So, I said all that to say this....  

Last evening I was perusing Pinterest and found a lady with some boards I could really relate to, one of which was a running board.  :)  

I made a collage with a few of my favorites to share with some friends:

And then I remembered I had also pinned this one:

I could hang these things all over my house..I'm such a words of encouragement type of girl.  lol 

Have a great day! 

Friday, February 15, 2013

Weigh-In ... Late Night Chicken

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

Well, I have to say that I almost decided to only post my weight at the end of every month because of the fluctuations I'm seeing weekly as I still try and get my act together.  I tried to tell myself I didn't want to vex my readers with the ups and downs and not seeing me go forward, but in reality I think it was because I didn't want to have to share when the scale is up.  So, I decided to keep with the weekly weigh-in posts, at least until I've reached my goal (or a place where I feel I'll be maintaining...which is closer to the goal than where I'm at now)

So, there it is.  Now, a large part of the scales readings today is due to eating a rather large dinner at 10:30 pm last night.  It was the last night of basketball games for my girls' school, and we ended up staying for all four games.  The original plan was to watch their game and maybe one other and then get Subway for dinner.  By the time the last game was done Subway had just closed, so there went that idea.  

We opted for Bojangles fried chicken instead.  *sigh*  I wasn't too thrilled, but I was so hungry I didn't care.  Unfortunately, I ended up having some fries and almost a full biscuit with my chicken breast.  As I crawled into bed I was so full.  I think just the meat would've been fine, but we all know how we tend to overeat when we're that hungry.  

Oh well.  

I have still been considering the fact that I may need to be careful about breads/sugars in my diet.  In fact, I've been picking almonds as a snack over a protein bar a couple of times and that's a big deal for me.  :)  

I know my calorie intake still needs to be lower overall for me to see weight loss, so that's why I know I'm not at a place where my body is maintaining naturally.  Case in point:  The chicken dinner really threw me over the top by a lot last night; and I was fine for the day until then.  So, I will keep plugging along.  

On a good note...if you saw my post yesterday about my Healthy Heart Weekend Run I am super thrilled that I can run 5 miles and it's not a huge deal anymore.  I remember three years ago when I was first attempting the Couch to 5K program to start running and my pace was about a 13 minute mile and as I slowly jogged through every workout I felt like I was training for a marathon.  Now running 3 miles is an easy run for me.  :)  

This is progress, and as long as I keep progressing I'm doing good.  

Thanks for checking in and have a nice weekend! 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

{MY} Healthy Heart Weekend

(Even though I forgot to post about it to encourage anyone to join me) I signed up for Lori's annual Healthy Heart Weekend challenge a few weeks back.  The goal is simply to get moving during the weekend of love.  :) 

I signed up to run 4 miles.  In the past I've signed up for a 5K (3.1 mi.), so I thought I'd up it this year. 

Well, I decided to get it done today to celebrate Valentine's Day and ended up running 5.0 miles!!! 

I'm just a tad tickled about it.  

It was my tempo run workout, so the middle mile was a speedy pace, and the rest was warm-up/cool-down paces.  However, I think I had a hard time slowing up in the other 4 miles, so I still ended up with a great average pace.  

Anyway, I hope you all have a wonderful Valentine's Day and may you find some activity to do this weekend that will help your heart be stronger for many more Valentines to come.  

Note:  As I'm posting this I realized the challenge is for Fri-Sat-Sun...so I'm early.  I thought it started today...oops.  :P

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Remembering Why I Keep Going

Yesterday morning I was pretty vexed about this whole weight loss thing.  My scale was up...a lot.  Yes, I had a "free day" and too much to eat Sunday night, but still.  To be up so much was weird especially after a good, within-the-calorie-budget day.  

Needless to say I ended up calling my friend because I have some inklings about what I eat making a big difference in losing any more weight.  I'll write more about it later, but with a large family history of Type II Diabetes I'm thinking I may have slight insulin resistance.  I've been reading about it and I have a feeling that's why I lose weight well when I cut out sugars/breads and then really have to burn lots of cardio calories to lose weight if I'm eating that stuff.  

Like I said, more on that topic later.  

My friend was wonderful to help me discuss some of this and encouraged me to keep going and find what's best for me.  Then I finally got myself out the door for my run.  

Later in the day I was looking up a link for yesterdays post among my old posts and I came across this one from June 2010.  

It began with "Dear Leah,
When your weight loss journey gets rough please take a minute to read this letter and be reminded of why you are working on becoming healthier and more fit."

So, I took a minute and read it.  

It was exactly what I needed to hear..from myself about 35 pounds heavier than I am now.  

If you have days you struggle, or are struggling now, please take a minute to read this.  Because the same reasons I didn't quit then are the same reasons I won't quit now.  I hope you'll be as encouraged as I was. 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

My 2013 10K Training Plan

This week I've begun a 10K training plan in preparation for a race I'd like to do in May.  I'm starting a few weeks early because (A) I'm excited to get started and (B) I know for sure there's one week I most likely won't get running in due to a short trip.  

My plan is the 10K: Own It plan from the book Train Like A Mother.  I got this book for Christmas and enjoyed reading it as much as I did their first book Run Like A Mother.  

Among other wonderful information, tips and stories, the training book has two types of training plans for distances 5K, 10K, Half Marathon and Marathon. One plan is easier and called the "Finish It" plan, the other is a bit harder and called the "Own It" plan.  The easier plan is to help a person make it to the finish line of a race without injury; the harder plan is to help someone make a personal best time.  

I picked the harder plan only because I saw the longer distances on the long runs and I decided those would be beneficial in preparing me for the half marathon I want to do in September.   It's a win-win plan.  

And..because I love making things pretty...I made up a sheet to hang and check off each of my workouts using a new digital scrapbooking kit I got recently.  :) 

This is now hung on my bedroom mirror and I will highlight each workout as I complete them.  

My plan is to do the Jillian Michaels Body Revolution DVDs on the cross training days (XT) and then the run workouts the other days.  I may go for a walk on the optional rest day, or I may rest.  I will always rest on Sundays.  

So, there it is.  My workout plan for the next few months. :)

Monday, February 11, 2013

Bumps & Bruises

Remember my ice skating trip last week?  Well, my fall resulted in some small bruises on the inside of each elbow.  They are looking pretty nasty now as they heal and are turning green and yellow.  

My daughters also have bruises on their knees and elbows from some hard falls they've taken in basketball.  

And, if I remember correctly, my son has a bruise somewhere from falling during a soccer practice.  

As we were comparing our bumps and bruises over the weekend one of my daughters said, "You know the good thing about all this is it shows we are an active family!" 


Another aspect of my new ending as a healthier, happier Leah that I'm grateful to enjoy ... some bumps and bruises because I'm out being active just like my children.  

*contented sigh*

Friday, February 8, 2013

Weigh-In ... Understandable & NSV

Today's Weigh:  165.5
Loss/Gain:  +1.0

After a strick no sugars/grains week, and then having a few high calorie days this week, I understand why the gain.  I was hoping to maintain, but this is not bad.  If I look at it as meaning I loss a net of 3 pounds over the last two weeks, then I'm good.  :) 

My sister-in-law is also up this week.  She was vexed, but I asked how her sweets/sugar cravings have been.  She said it's been fine and she hasn't had much junk.  I pointed out that the "detox" week was to kind of rid our systems of the desire for that stuff.  And I know it helped both of us, even if the scale is no reacting as we'd like.  Although, I track my food and know why my weight is up..besides my body not liking breads/sugars I just ate too much.  

I think all will be fine in the long run.  

For myself, I know that after having a few things like the pizza and muffin, I have found myself wanting more fresh foods again.  Wednesday I had a little piece of dark chocolate, but both that night and last night I enjoyed having a cup of non-fat plain greek yogurt with some honey on it for my dessert in the evening.  

In fact, I had a NSV of sorts for myself yesterday.  While grocery shopping I was going to grab a protein bar (like a Zone bar) to have as a snack later with my coffee.  Then I looked at the label to see how much sugar is in it.  I decided I could have some almonds with my coffee and that would be a better choice.  When I got home I ended up having a cup of strawberries and a lite string cheese -- also a good choice.  A little less calories than the protein bar and more real food. 

I will probably still have protein bars once in a while, I love them for breakfast with my coffee and they are convenient, but I've decided having something fresh is better for me.  

This is nothing new to me.  It's just that I'm noticing how important these little decisions are the closer I get to goal.  This is the fine tuning that will help me lose this last twenty pounds.  

Thanks for "listening" and checking in on me.  I'm going to go eat my oatmeal now....plain instant oats with almond milk, a dash of cinnamon and a Tbsp. of peanut butter  ... YUM!

  Have a nice Friday and a great weekend! 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Ice Skating

Short Story:  I went ice skating for the first time and succeeded knowing my weight loss and regular physical activity made it easier than it would've been in the past.  Score!!
Long Story: 
Yesterday I went on a field trip with my son's class to an ice skating rink.  I've never been ice skating, but I figured I'd give it a go.  You gotta try new things, right? 

Well, I got the skates on and then stood up.  It wasn't as bad as I thought to balance on them.  Then came the ice.  Whoo Boy!  It was slippery and I spent the first 3/4 of a lap with my hand on the side taking it very slow.  

My legs were literally shaking I was so nervous. 

Then I just started telling myself, "You can do this.  If you can run a 10K, you can ice skate.  You are strong.  You exercise regularly.  Relax.   your.   knees.  ....  Relax.  period. "  

Since I was a young girl I've hated hitting bumps when I skate.  I could never skate well on a sidewalk because every little piece of grit or pebble would threaten to stop me and make me fall.  It was the same on the ice and I was shaking. 

Finally I started loosening up, forcing myself to go with the flow and relax.  I got the hang of it and enjoyed myself (while constantly on the lookout for 7th graders who were falling regularly so as to steer clear of them...I never did stop without just going to the wall.  lol) I was even able to coast to a girl who had fallen and help her. 

In fact, I even did the chicken dance.  Remember that?!?! Me and another mom reminisced about how it reminded us of the skating rink when we were kids.  I was pleased to see many of the kids knew about this dance as well...it lives on!! 

But I digress. 

As I was wobbly skating and enjoying myself I often thought about how this was another activity I was able to take part in more easily because of my weight loss.  

I'm the kind of girl who would've gone even if I was larger, as my weight didn't stop me from trying to participate, but I know the skating was made easier by weighing a bit less and being physically active.  I could tell myself my legs were strong enough to carry me.  

It was a great feeling!! (then I imagined I was on one of those skating ponds you see in a movie on a brisk, sunny winter day and enjoyed it all the much more..)

Now for the funny ending ....

I think I became prematurely confident in my skating abilities and when I tried to join in with some other clap-along "fun" song I fell.  BAM!  I don't even remember what happened except suddenly I was flat on my stomach, feeling my stomach soften the blow and my head snapped back.  I got to my knees and decided crawling to the wall was not as embarrassing as falling a second time trying to get up.  


Apparently, my arms must've flown up and slammed down, because I now have a bruise on the inside of each elbow.  And boy is my neck sore today!  

That was my only major mishap, but I got up and skated a little more after that and still enjoyed it.  In fact, my son and I agreed that we had a blast! 

I'll definitely chaperone this trip again next year if they need me.  :)

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Checking in Post Kickstart

So....Friday we added grains and sugars back into our diet and....

It's been okay.  I have found that I wasn't really craving sweets, but I did enjoy a nice cup of ice cream Friday night as a treat.

My weekend went very well, considering weekends are usually more free-for-all than not in my eating. I stayed within my calorie budget..until Sunday night.

We met with some friends after our evening church service to catch the second half of the Super Bowl and I ended up eating pizza.  I bought a salad and had some of that, but ate more pizza than I needed.  And some cinnamon dessert thing, which wasn't even that good except that it had cinnamon and chocolate on it.


But yesterday I decided I wasn't going to beat myself up for one meal.

Instead, I decided to beat myself up later for munching my way through half of a Sam's Club muffin.  300 calories.  Yikes!

That was frustrating, because I felt like I was sliding back towards the sugar/junk thing.

More dang!!

I texted my ever-faithful friend about it and she encouraged me that "tomorrow is a new day".

True.  And I'm not going to quit because of eating pizza, ice cream and 1/2 of a huge muffin this week.

Tonight we have a pot luck at Bible Study and that kind of scares me.  However, I know what's being served (the leader's wife makes the main dish and we bring sides/desserts), so I have a plan.  This is like a test for me, because these are the events that throw me off.  I'm a social eater..I enjoy eating when others are.

Exercise is going well, so wish me luck with the food.  After my bumps in the road I'll be content with a maintain this week, but I think it'll take some focus to get it.

Here's to trying.

Oh, and SIL is doing great!!!  She ate pizza with me, but no muffin yesterday (I was nibbling on it throughout the afternoon...).

Friday, February 1, 2013

Weigh-In ... Kickstart Results

Today's Weight:  164.5
Loss/Gain:  - 4.0 lbs

Our six days of the 7-Day Kickstart Your Metabolism plan paid off (yes, we started Saturday and were happy to add grains back in today..six days was good and it's my official weigh-in day.) 

In fact...for the record...my sister-in-law is down 5 lbs this week too!!  

We're doing the happy dance!

Here's our little review of the week.
  • We agree the food all tasted fine, except plain greek yogurt (BLECH.)  
  • We agree the amount of vegetables helped our bowels move smoothly.  
  • The fatigue that comes with drastically cutting out sugars was difficult.  I knew to expect this, but SIL did not; and she said that was the worst part for her. 
  • We've both noticed belly bloating has gone way down.  
  • I noticed my craving for sweets has been pretty much non existent.  
We agree we would do this again if necessary and it was definitely worth jumpstarting ourselves to get back with healthier eating.  

In fact, last night SIL asked me, "So, can we eat ______ next week?"  

I was like, "Yes...blah. blah." and then I got to thinking.  She's somewhat new to this.  She's eaten healthy before and lost weight, but she's looking to me for some help now. 

Oh my.  

I need to be a good example.  I've been wanting to help get my family back on a healthier track, but now I see that she really wants to keep this up.  A couple of times she has mentioned not wanting to ruin this week's results and wanting to keep going with the good eating -- and I agree.

So, last night I wrote out a menu of options of food for the week ahead and have emailed a copy to her.  I've printed one out to put on my fridge (there was a template on my computer, so this didn't take long at all.) and we are going to stick to this plan.  

I usually always jot down my dinner menu before writing a grocery list, so this was taking it one step further.

I think one of the best things about following the kickstart plan was the menu, but with options.  There was a menu plan for every day, but the book said to go ahead and switch meals as long as you stayed within the same meal of the day (no switching lunch for dinner, etc.).  In following that line of thinking I  have made it so that we can pick from each meal of the day what we feel like eating that day.  

I'm going grocery shopping today, so the foods needed for these meals will be available.

And in case you're interested...here's my menu:

So, there you have it.  The kickstart was worth the week and we're ready to keep going.  Wish me luck and thanks for stopping by!