You CAN do it!

Last January, I told myself it was time to change. I told myself this every year (you know, the typical resolution), and for some reason, I just never had the motivation to do it. However, last year hit me hard. The scale was an ice cream sundae away from 300 pounds, and I just knew I couldn’t keep doing this to myself.

So, I downloaded MyFitnessPal on my phone, and started logging every bite of food. It was hard at first. I mean, how natural is it to remember to journal EVERY bite of food? It’s really not, but I knew this was the only way.

I slowly added in workouts, including Jillian’s 30 Day Shred, and then I told myself it was time to run. Running was something I was always terrible at, but I thought why not? I committed myself to the Couch to 5K workout program in the summer, which was fairly insane. I had to run at 7:30pm to make running slightly bearable.

2012 was hard. The weight I lost was not easy, but I’m proud of what I accomplished in 2012.

2012 Weight Loss

There are some times where I still question if I could have worked harder, and had better results, but the wonderful thing is I’m healthier than I was last year. All of my fat clothes (except for one “before” pair of jeans that I will probably keep forever) are in garbage bags, ready to be dropped off at a donation box, and I feel awesome. I still have a long way to go on my weight loss journey, but I’m hoping I can lose the same amount of weight in 2013. That would put me in the 100s, which I haven’t seen since MIDDLE SCHOOL.

That’s just exciting to me. :-)

I really wanted to write this blog post to let you know that you can do this too. I sat on my sofa 120 lbs. overweight last January, and I was so overwhelmed. 120 lbs. is a lot, but I took it 10 lbs. at a time, and rewarded myself along the way. I LOVE those little rewards….they really gave/give me something to look forward to (besides weighing less).

I’m a big fan of calorie counting, because I didn’t have to give up any food. I still ate ice cream, went out to eat (and didn’t eat grilled chicken/veggies) and enjoyed my baking from time to time. I think my biggest wake up call were my portion sizes. I don’t eat nearly as much as I used to, which just happened over time. I’ve become a lot more conscious about when I’m feeling full, instead of just eating everything in front of me, then regretting it. I also LOVE having my BodyMedia Link armband…it’s good (at least for me) to have a better idea of how many calories I’m burning during a workout, and even throughout the day in general. :-)

I know this is very cliche, but I’ve been overweight for a long time. A LONG time. I was the fat kid in school, and if I can do this, you really can too. Just realize the weight will take time to come off, and try not to obsess as crazily as I did over the scale. You’ll be surprised how much you can accomplish in a year. You don’t have to lose 100 lbs. You don’t have to lose 50. If you even lose 5 lbs. this year, you are 5 lbs. lighter than you were last year, and that’s just an awesome feeling. :-)

You CAN do it!

 

Confessions of a Binge Eater

This is a hard post to write, because it’s something that a lot of people can easily judge a person on.

I am/was a binge eater.

It really started around middle school. My afternoon has always been a snack fest, which I’m still currently trying to work on. I would eat mostly junk food and lots of it. I would do something like completely fill up a bowl with ice cream, mindlessly eat that, and sometimes go for seconds. I would eat 2-3 snack cakes or half of a bag of chips. Thinking back, I was ashamed of my snacking habits and I’d even hide the trash under trash from that morning so no one noticed. It was almost every day that I would do this. It was a problem.

When I got to high school, I’d stay after school for activities. I’d buy 2 candy bars from the vending machine and a soda, thinking nothing of it. And when I started working at a grocery store, things just got worse. I would always buy myself snacks after work, and just eat it all in the car before I got home. I wanted the snack, but I didn’t want anyone to see me eating it. I slowly gained weight in high school, but it wasn’t anything drastic that would alarm anyone. I went from a size 16 to a size 20 in high school.

When I got to college, I kept having random meals when I wasn’t hungry. I’d eat my 3 regular meals, but during late nights, it just felt right to go to Jack in the Box or Canes. I didn’t need the food, but hey, who was gonna stop me? My habits in the cafeteria alone were terrible. I’d have seconds or sometimes, even thirds. And don’t get me started on the free ice cream…I’d have at least two servings of that. One during the meal and one to go. I actually didn’t gain any weight in college, though. I’m pretty sure walking a few miles/day to classes and student organizations had a little something to do with that.

However, when I graduated and entered the real world, aka 8 hours/day behind a computer, it really caught up to me. I moved back in with my parents, and continued my same terrible habits. I gained about 20 lbs. after college fairly quickly, and realized that my work clothes were no longer fitting. I also became engaged to my husband around that time, so I knew I had to do something. I started on Weight Watchers, and lost the weight that I gained post-college. I was on cloud 9 at our wedding…240 lbs.

After the pressure of the wedding let off, I found myself back to my old ways. I’d tell myself weekly that I’d start going back to the gym and eating better, but I didn’t. I would eat a treat every day after work, and I ate fast food for lunch. Dinners weren’t much healthier, and I ate until I was completely stuffed. And in between, I just snacked all the time. I remember after work one day ordering a full meal from a fast food place just as a snack. I wasn’t hungry, but I had a terrible day at work…I just didn’t care. I also ate a full dinner that night. With habits like that it’s no surprise that I gained 58 lbs. Seriously. No surprise.

I had a series of wake-up calls that led me to taking control of my life.

  • I fit in a pair of size 26 pants and 3x tops.
  • It felt like a chore to walk sometimes.
  • ALL of my clothes in the closet were completely tight. It was bad.
  • I couldn’t fit in a booth anymore without squeezing my stomach in.
  • The scale was dangerously close to 300 lbs.

So, after the holidays last year, I saw the 298 and thought that this was it. 2012 is my year to change. I have to change, especially if I want to expand our family….even at 250 lbs., my doctor said I would probably have fertility problems, as well as a higher risk pregnancy. Now I know that weight doesn’t fix fertility problems, and I have no idea if I truly have fertility problems (we’ve never tried). However, I wanted to rule out weight as a problem for when we are ready for kids, so on January 1st (after drinking an entire bottle of wine out of a Solo cup on NYE…so classy), I made the decision to change.

It was VERY hard to not give into my urges. I can’t tell you how many times I went to the grocery store, and just wanted to buy a pint of ice cream or a bag of cookies. I started calorie counting, and truly treated my calories like a budget (for the most part….I do have a splurge meal from time to time). Every time I have an urge at home, I grab something to work on, whether it’s knitting, sewing or heck…just cleaning or writing a to-do list. It helps. I avoided baking for a while (which stunk, because baking is SUCH a fun hobby of mine), because I knew I could easily eat 4-5 servings of a dessert without even thinking. The first time I got back into baking, after everything cooled, I set one serving aside to enjoy, and put the rest on a plate with saran wrap and then even taped the bottom of the plate to make it more difficult to give in to my urges. I know…extreme, but my binge eating was extreme and I didn’t want to go back there. Months later, I stick to my one serving and sometimes even a half serving of the food I bake.

I’m still battling those urges today. It really only happens in extremes…either when life is stressful or if I find myself extremely bored, it takes a lot to tell myself “no” to those urges to just eat everything. I’m not perfect…sometimes I’ll give in and eat what I want (I always stop myself after that one meal), but I’m doing much better than I used to. My weight loss is at 50 lbs., and I know since I’ve been doing this for 10 months, those results could be much better. I’m human though, and I know that fighting the urges to binge are going to probably be a lifetime struggle.

The past two weeks have been a little difficult. The scale just stayed put, and it has been SO hard not to binge. It really truly was. Last night, I decided to go through my SD card and found a photo of myself from August of last year. I ended up turning on the camera phone and took a picture of myself right then and there. I was shocked.

50 lbs. (face)

You see, when I take my progress shots every ten lbs., I just see that same shape. I know things are getting smaller, because smaller clothes fit, but I didn’t see 50 lbs. of progress in my latest pictures.

50 lbs. lost collage

However, the face? Oh man…I can’t tell you how stoked I am to finally see results like that. The face shows those 50 lbs. My body (to me)….ehh not quite, but my face? I definitely see it now. Talk about re-motivated! Only 9.3 more lbs. to go until 20%. C’mon Amy, let’s do this!

40 lbs.

Two days ago, I looked at the scale and saw that I’ve lost 40 lbs. since my weight loss journey started. It’s been a wonderful 9 months (ha, that sounds like I’m talking about a pregnancy, doesn’t it?), because so many great things have happened since my last weight loss update (which was at 10%).

Here’s my progress (I had to include a certain photo-bomber for one of these pics). I’m wearing a different gray shirt for these, so I think it’s a little harder to see the progress, but eh…no big deal. :-)

40 pounds collage

  • I’m running 30 minutes non-stop, and have signed up for my 2nd 5K (with a 3rd 5K in mind as well)
  • My size 24 jeans are crazy loose and my size 20 shorts from my honeymoon are still a little snug, but they fit!
  • I tried on a size 9 pair of shoes this past Sunday and they fit! I’m usually a size 10. It could be a brand difference, but heck, I’m still happy about it. :-)
  • I’m starting to feel a little definition in my legs, especially my thighs.
  • I’m trying on some tops from 3 years ago (wedding time) and they are almost to the point to where I can wear them in public (without looking too snug).

I can’t believe that I’m 10 lbs. away from losing FIFTY pounds (time for some fun shoes soon!), and 18 lbs. away from my wedding weight. I really truly never thought this would happen, since my starting weight was really out of control, but I’m learning that if you REALLY want to lose weight…you CAN do it!

I have no idea how to thank you guys, but every time I write about weight loss or a work-out, I get so much support from y’all. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. I have a long way to go, but gosh, with the support/sweet comments/virtual high fives that I’m getting, I don’t see my weight loss journey ending anytime soon! THANK YOU!

If you’re interested, here’s my previous weight loss updates:

5%

20 lbs.

10%

Running Shoes

For the past few months of my running journey, I’ve been running on these shoes. I purchased them on Rue La La last year, because a few of the running blogs I read mentioned that they loved their Saucony shoes. If you remember, I tried C25K earlier this year, and I just flat out quit. In the meantime, I wore these shoes as my casual tennis shoes, and then when I got back into C25K this past summer, I ran on them again. I know if runners are reading this, they are shaking their heads at me. I still have a lot to learn.

A few weeks ago, I got my shoes fairly muddy and realized that part of the sole was completely worn down on my running shoes. Crud. :-( Those shoes didn’t even last a year, so I assumed that Saucony shoes were just crappy. The more forums and articles I read, the more that I realized 1. As an obese gal, shoes won’t last as long & 2. I shouldn’t have worn my running shoes for casual every day wear. So, I went back to Rue La La for a flash sale and bought these, because they looked similar and were pretty.

I broke them in a couple of times before I ran my 5K. They were OK, however, I started to notice this terrible pain in my ankles after every run. Just random pain from walking in them, so I got a bit concerned and realized I probably shouldn’t purchase shoes based on how pretty they are anymore. I needed to get properly fitted.

The big push to go to a running store was when my local Fleet Feet posted on Facebook that they were having a one day sale on all sale shoes. $25 for any pair of sale shoes (for the hour that I could go after work). I even told H about it since we’re both looking for better work-out shoes. I mean, seriously…$25 for shoes? What. a. steal!

However, I was SO nervous to go to a running store. Why? Well, at first sight I don’t look like I belong there. I hate being judged and stared at in public, because of my size, and I knew that going to a running store, I would be a misfit.

When I got to the store, I was hoping I’d be invisible. No one would notice me, right? WRONG. Weekdays at a running store, even for a massive shoe sale = dead. Two ladies greeted me when I walked in, and I just wanted to say “I know I’m fat, I know I’m slow, but I’m on my way…please don’t judge me.” But, the cheap person in me was like “sale shoes?”

They pointed me out to one pair that was left in my size. They were crazy bright and awesome. I tried them on, and I was sold. $25 for Adidas? Heck yes!

Running Shoes 2

Then I thought about it, and asked if these were OK for me. Since the store was otherwise dead, two girls were helping me and they asked if I’ve ever been fitted for shoes before? Are you new to running? How many miles/week do you run? What’s your favorite color? Ok, maybe not favorite color, but they genuinely seemed to want to hear my “running story”. So, I explained to them that I’m on my last week of Couch to 5k, and because of mainly running and diet, I’ve lost about 40 lbs. I run 3x/week, approximately 30 minutes each time, but I’m aiming to run longer with time.

I don’t know why, but I still felt nervous about what they were going to say. Were they going to laugh at me? Were they going to tell me I have super messed up feet? They asked me to walk barefoot around the store to observe my stride. Luckily, the only issue they noticed was that my right foot needed extra stability, and one of them asked if I had an injury in my right leg.

They were spot on with that.

You see in high school, I broke my right ankle and ever since, my ankle has a tendency to roll. Luckily, I never rolled my ankle running, but it happens fairly often when I’m just walking around. And also, remember when I mentioned my ankle pain? Well, yeah…those new Saucony shoes didn’t offer the additional stability I needed.

So, I asked if I could try on some shoes, and she said the best shoes for me would be for mild pronation. She brought out three pairs of shoes: New Balance, Brooks and Asics. I was easily able to narrow out one of them, which were the Asics. They were SO comfy, but I didn’t feel the same support like the New Balance and Brooks shoes had. Then I had a dilemma…I had a New Balance on one foot and a Brooks on the other. They pretty much felt the same to me, but in the end after a little bit of walking/jogging in the store, I went with the Brooks. They are the Brooks Ravenna 3 shoes, if you were wondering the exact shoe. :-)

Running Shoes

I tried to keep my cheapness to myself, because I knew I was doing the right thing. I did look over the counter to see the price of these, though. $100. That’s the most I’ve EVER spent on a pair of shoes, y’all. ::gulp:: I also ended up getting the $25 Adidas, because she said they would work fine for regular workouts and plus, they’re such a fun, bright color. :-)

When I got home, I couldn’t wait to try these babies out. I ran last night in my new shoes, and I have to say, it was pretty awesome. It could have been in my head, but I felt like I could put more effort into my run (maybe the good weather helped with that too), and I also didn’t have the ankle soreness OR the terrible tight feeling in my legs afterwards.

In case you were curious about my current Saucony shoes, I did a little research and apparently they are a generic shoe that isn’t even offered in running stores. :-( I guess they’ll end up as a good casual shoe then, since I don’t want them to go to waste. 😛 Lesson learned: No more running shoes from a flash sale site.

When did you get your first fitting for running shoes? Did you find it to be worth it too?

 

Zoo Zoom 5K

Last Saturday was my first 5K. Well, I used to do 5Ks with friends in college, but most of the time, I walked the course. I was never a runner, and I didn’t really care about my place in the race. I cared more about the free jambalaya and drinks afterward. Typical college student, right? MUST.FIND.FOOD. 😛

I have been doing the Couch to 5K training program for weeks now, so I figured it would be cool to test myself and see how I could do. I didn’t have high expectations, because my current pace is very slow, but I was really hoping for a 45 minute time.

Spoiler alert: 45 minutes didn’t happen.

The day before the race, it stormed, which isn’t really a big deal unless you live in a place like this. The day after a nasty storm, it’s usually crazy humid outside. I thought that maybe 8:15am starting time wouldn’t be SO bad, since it was still kind of early, so I woke up, ate most of a Luna bar, some fresh raspberries and chugged down a glass of water. Then, as I was getting ready to leave, I got SO nervous. I kept thinking to myself…what am I doing? Am I really going to do this? Thank God I had my friend doing this with me, because I probably would have chickened out and crawled back into bed.

Then, I thought…hey, it’s just a 5K. In the middle of the summer. How crowded could it be?

So, my friend and I arrived at the zoo, and the parking lot was PACKED. It was a HUGE turnout, and there were so many runners out there who looked like they meant business.

ZooZoom1

I kept telling my friend “We got this…we’re gonna rock this”, but in the back of my head I kept saying “Don’t pass out…don’t fall…don’t come in last”.

Before I knew it, the race started. I put on my Pandora station, and started my jog. I was feeling pretty good, and noticed that I saw a 13:29 pace on my app. To me, that was CRAZY fast. So, I slowed down to avoid the burn-out. My usual pace is a VERY slow 16:30ish, so I tried to stick to 15:00/mile pace as long as I could.

For the first mile, time flew. I wasn’t staring at my phone to check my stats much, and realized that I was doing a pretty good job with my pace after I saw the Mile 1 sign. :-) Then, around 1.5 miles, the usual zoo canopy of trees were gone, replaced with a side part of the track where we had to run through some sort of back parking lot. OH MY GAH. No shade…humid as all get out….and HOT. I was so sad to do this, but I had to walk. I walked for about half a mile until I got back under the trees, and got right back to running.

The second run was just SO difficult to get back into. I was hot, sweaty and felt like I was truly the slowest person there. I never turned around to see if anyone was behind me, but I felt truly alone at that point. There was one point around this time where I was running on the right side of the track, since I knew there would be mile 3 runners running on the same part of the track (yeah, the loops in this race were VERY confusing), and a volunteer shouted at me to move for the REAL runners (despite already being on the right side of the track). :(

That guy was the only volunteer who was like that. I have to admit, the other volunteers were truly wonderful. Even though I was one of the slowest ones there, they kept telling me “great job”, “keep it up”, “you’re awesome”…things like that. I really appreciated that, and every time, I’d try to muster out a “thank you” since they really did inspire me to keep pushing. :-)

When I saw the mile 3 sign, I told myself to SPRINT. I can sprint 0.1 miles, and I figured it was just around the curve that I was running. I got super excited, but the curve kept going on and on and on…seriously. But then, I heard my friend. She was screaming “GO AMY!”, so I kept my sprint going to that finish. I saw my time as I crossed the finish line…51:06.

I was SO discouraged….like very bummed, but then I gave my friend a huge hug, and she said “You DID IT! You FINISHED a 5K!” My first reaction was WATER. SNACK. CHAIR., so we walked over to the pavilion where the rest of the runners were and I grabbed what I needed. :-)

ZooZoom4

After guzzling down the water and slowly eating some animal crackers, I was so relieved to finally catch my breath. :-)

My friend and I took a picture, and until then, I didn’t really realize how much I was SWEATING!

zoozoom3

By the way, do you recognize this shirt?

After a few minutes, I decided to check the results to see how I did. I was 6th to last place. (yikes) However, on my Runkeeper app, I noticed that my overall pace was completely AWESOME. Way better than any long run I’ve ever done, and this race was almost twice as much as my longest C25K workout! 😀 So, that was awesome. And, my results can only get better from here!

My friend and I are already looking for a 5K to do this Fall, in fact! :-)

A weight loss tool that works for me

As y’all know, I’m currently calorie counting to lose this weight/lead a healthier lifestyle. As much as I love MyFitnessPal, I also use the BodyMedia Fit Link armband. This tool has really motivated me to just keep on, keeping on.

I wrote a very basic review about the armband in March, and now that I’ve been using it for a few more months (and 20 lbs. later), I’ve found some other features that have made it even more awesome.

Here’s a typical day for me. This was obviously a rest day for me, as you can see in the physical activity. My goal is to always have a 1000 calorie deficit, at the very least, which (theoretically) results in a 2 lbs. loss/week. It doesn’t always work out that way, but it’s a goal that I have.

Another cool feature I’ve noticed after using it for a few months is the “personal bests” tab. I haven’t added comments yet, but I do remember that most of the late July personal bests were from my trip to San Diego. I did TONS of walking there, since my hotel was 1.5 miles from where my conference was held!

Another cool feature on the site is that you can customize your daily goals. My goal weight of 175 is a little on the high side, BMI wise, but I would be thrilled at that weight. If I happen to lose more, great…if not, I know 175 is a pretty good number for my height (5’9″-5’10″ish). I also love being able to see when I will ideally reach my goal weight. At my weight loss rate so far, I should be at my goal weight next summer or fall. Crazy to think about! Just CRAZY!

What kind of tools are you using to motivate you in weight loss?

Disclosure: I was sent this product at no cost to me, as well as free membership for a fair and honest review. All opinions expressed about this product are my own.

When are you a runner?

I remember those moments as a school kid when the PE teacher would choose team captains. I knew if I wasn’t a captain, I may as well sit down and wait until the very end to be the last kid picked. I was always the last kid picked, even if a best friend was the captain. I was that chubby/slow/awkward/nerdy kid who no one wanted on their team. It stunk.

I also remember every year, we had to do a physical fitness test. Sure, I could do sit-ups and jump rope, but when it came to the run? I would fail. I never got a president’s fitness award or anything like that.  As a nerd, I was always on the honor roll, I was first to finish my times table tests in class, I could spell like it was nobody’s business, but…. I remember feeling like an intense failure when I’d never bring a president’s fitness award to my parents.

The ultimate failure was in 8th grade PE. That day, every student had to run 10 minutes non-stop in the gym for part of the track & field fitness test. And if you stopped, you dropped a letter grade for that test. I remember starting off slow, thinking I can do this…I can…just 10 minutes. I need that A. 5 minutes in, one of the bullies taunted me about being so fat and how ridiculous it was that I was completely out of breath. Between the running and the taunting, I just stopped to walk so I could hold back the tears. My PE teacher screamed my last name and said, “That’s a B. You better run before it’s a C!” So, I got back to it and soon after, my sides started cramping. I had to stop again, but I knew that making a C would be terrible. I didn’t make Cs in school, but every muscle in my body was screaming for me to stop. So, I did. I got yelled at again, and the bullies started with the fat jokes. That PE teacher didn’t care…in those days, bullying was a normal thing. It still hurt like hell, but no teacher really did anything about bullies. Those were the longest 10 minutes of my life, and I ended up with a D grade for that test. My very first D.

That’s something I don’t think I will ever forget. Sure, it was just a 10 minute PE test, but I let myself fail. I let the bullies get to me, and I didn’t get the grade that I wanted. I was so ashamed, and told myself that running was just one of those things I’d never be able to do.

Fast forward 15 years. Now, I’ve been following a good bit of healthy living blogs, watching people run for leisure or because it’s routine. I’ve read about people’s journeys to train for a half or ::gulp::, even a full marathon. It’s been inspiring to read about, but the memories from middle school left a bitter taste in my mouth for running. If I couldn’t run 10 minutes then, what makes me think I could run 10 minutes now?

I wanted to try it, though. I’ve read a few blogs where people have lost 100+ lbs., and their main cardio activity was running.

Hold the phone! Fat people like me CAN run??!

So, I did the first workout of Couch to 5K. One minute running, 90 seconds walking…8 times. I was dead after that. DEAD. I kept thinking…that was just ONE MINUTE. How do these people do it?!

But…I was determined. If they can do it, so can I.

The crazy thing is, I’m doing the Couch to 5K in the middle of summer in Louisiana. Humidity sucks. Heat sucks. I’m a dripping gross mess when I get home, and I’m usually doing my runs at 7:00/7:30pm. Still…it’s hot y’all!

There were many times where I told myself that I should try something else. I’m 265 lbs. I’m too fat for this. But then, during my 20 minute run in week 5, I remembered those bullies.

The ones who told me Shamu doesn’t run…
The ones who told me I was a waste of air…
The ones who told me to get out of their way…

I had a moment where I was about to cry, because I felt like I couldn’t do this anymore. Who was I? I’m not a runner…I will NEVER be a runner….

But when I looked down at my phone, I realized I had already ran for 11 minutes. Non-stop. If I kept going, I could go home knowing that I ran twice the amount of that fitness test in middle school. So I pushed through it. When I was done, I didn’t cry…all I did was smile. I did this. I ran over a mile….without a break.

And then yesterday, I ran for 25 minutes without a break, going 30 seconds faster/mile than the 20 minute run. This week, my runs are nothing but 25 minutes non-stop running. What happened? 6 short weeks ago, I was having my lungs explode over a minute of running. And now??!

COULD I BE A RUNNER?

I mean, first I should ask…AM I a runner yet? If not, when do you call yourself a runner?

10%

Do you ever look at pictures of people losing weight and think their before looks like they were inflated with extra air or something? I’m not trying to insult myself, but when I stare at my nearly 300 lb. self from January squeezing into an XL shirt, I think that. I went out in public like that regularly. I’m really embarrassed thinking back on it, but I always told myself that I was not a size 2XL shirt gal. Clearly, I should have been.

It’s been a little over seven months, three of those being a lull for me (I sort of gave up in the spring…woops!), but I finally reached the 260s this morning! That’s 10%, yall!

I took these pictures tonight, and while I don’t see much of a body shape difference, I definitely see that the XL shirt is a LOT looser. And yes, that’s the exact same shirt and capris I’m wearing in the pic to keep things uniform for progress pics. I also see it in my face…my double chin is slowly going away. :-)

And yeah….I realize that after taking these pics that I was totally wearing a standard bra and in my current pic I was wearing my sports bra. So, things do look a lot different in the ladies department in these pics, but the difference isn’t that drastic. 😛

10% lost before/now

10% is a big step on this weight loss journey for me. While I still have about 85 lbs. to lose, I think this may have been the biggest hurdle for me to cross.

I feel like I’ve found a good balance, food and exercise wise. I’m on my weight loss plan every day. There are no “cheat days” for me, because I do not want to fall off the wagon like I have in the past. I log every single bite, but I still enjoy a weekly treat and/or meal. I just don’t binge anymore. In fact, you may notice I’m still baking like crazy (if you read my food blog). I’m happy that I get to enjoy every dish that I write about but now, I’m no longer eating 3-4 brownies in one sitting or a heaping bowl of homemade ice cream. It’s much smaller servings this time around, and I’m completely fine with that. As long as I have the calories (or since I’m giving Weight Watchers a try for a month right now, points), I don’t feel an ounce of guilt enjoying a treat.

Weight loss for me isn’t happening quickly. I’m not losing 5 lbs./week. I’m averaging about 2 lbs./week lately, and I’m completely stoked about that. In fact, I haven’t gained any weight the past 7 weeks that I’ve been back in the weight loss groove. 😀 So, while it’s slow, I know I’m still losing, and to me, that’s all that matters. At this rate, if I keep losing 2 lbs./week, I’ll be at my goal by spring of next year! That’s a really exciting thought, y’all!

Here’s some NSVs (non scale victories) that I’ve noticed since starting my weight loss journey:

  • Pants size before: 26 —– Pants size now: 22 or 24 depending on the jeans
  • Work shirt size before: 22/24 or 3x —– Work shirt size now: 18/20 or 2x (although I tried on a 1x shirt at Macy’s last week and that fit perfectly!)
  • I have to hook my bra on one notch in instead of pulling hoping that it hooks on the last notches.
  • I had terrible lower back pain this past winter. That’s not an issue anymore.
  • I ran for 5 minutes in a row TWICE this week (Thank you Couch to 5k!).
  • My BodyMedia Fit armband is no longer squeezing on my arm. It fits, but it doesn’t leave a red mark where the band was when I take it off.
  • My wedding rings are starting to feel loose again.

I know this post may come across as braggy, but I can’t help it. I’m VERY proud of myself for reaching this step. Look at what losing 10% can do! I even get a little reward for losing 10%. :-) Just all sorts of great things, y’all!

So, here we go to the next milestone! 50 lbs., here I come!

Keepin’ On

I can’t believe that it’s been 7 months since I started my weight loss journey. I hate to admit this, but every year I’ve told myself my resolution was to lose weight, only to fail within the month. I’m so glad that I’ve been able to keep this up for 7 months. I can’t say that this is all because of me, because it really isn’t. My husband has been unbelievably supportive of me, as well as my family and friends.

I also can’t forget y’all. All of your wonderful comments, tweets, and emails have definitely been amazing. If it wasn’t for the support I’ve gotten, I don’t think I would be where I’m at right now. Thank you so much.

If you’re wondering about progress, as of this morning, I’m 2 lbs. away from 10%. I’ve never gotten this far before. Even for the wedding, I lost 24 lbs., and now that I’ve surpassed that number, I’m driven even more than ever to reach my goal weight. :-) Once I hit 10%, I’ll do another progress picture post.

As far as work-outs go, I just finished week 2 of C25K. I didn’t think I’d be able to run outside in this crazy hot weather, but so far, my body is surprising me and I’m doing pretty well. It’s so exciting to feel my body getting stronger every day. The biggest deal to me will be the end of week 5. A 20 minute run. I’ve NEVER been able to run 20 minutes in a row. How crazy will that be??! I’m also doing the 30 Day Shred on some in-between days. I will admit that Day 1 was terrible. TERRIBLE. I could barely do 3 girly push-ups, jumping jacks were a joke and the weight exercises that involved my shoulders just weren’t happening. Just like with running, it’s amazing to see how much my body can do now vs. day 1. Your body changes fast, y’all!

Diet wise, I’m still calorie counting. I found that at 1600 calories (2 lbs. lost/week according to MyFitnessPal), my body wasn’t responding well (I had a plateau for quite a while), so I upped my calories to about 1800 (1.5 lbs. lost/week according to MyFitnessPal). Once I did that, the scale started moving again…slowly, but surely. Eep! :-)

Thanks again to y’all for your amazing support! This is such a big change for me, and your support is definitely motivating me to keep on keepin’ on. :-)

BTW, if any of y’all on MyFitnessPal, I’m “niftyfoodie” on there if you’d like a friend!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shredding things up..

It’s been almost a month since I started calorie counting again, and I’m finding that I absolutely love this healthier lifestyle, especially the exercise part. Lately, I’ve been working out about 3-4 days/week for 30 minutes. It’s not much, but for me, it has been a drastic change.

About two weeks ago, I dusted off Jillian’s 30 Day Shred. The last time I started the Shred was before our wedding, which was 3 years ago. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit that I could barely do 5 girly push-ups and jumping jacks? Yeah, those definitely weren’t happening. I felt a bit defeated after the workout, and thought that I just really messed up my body. Can’t do a jumping jack? What was WRONG with me? :(

The next day, I was surprised to feel sore. I thought that I didn’t do much, but apparently, I did enough to make my (lack of) muscles scream at me. It was also a pretty darn terrible day for my allergies, so every sneeze went like this…”AH-CHOO!! ow..”…and yeah, I’d really say ow. It hurt. I wasn’t looking forward to day two at all that evening, but I pushed through it. It was still just as hard as day 1, with the wonderful addition of soreness. I didn’t want to have to do that again, so I decided after day 2 to take a rest day and see if that would help with the soreness.

I will say that on day 3 of the workout (after the rest day), I noticed a much bigger difference in how much I could workout. The strength components still were difficult, as well as some of the cardio (jumping jacks and just regular jumping), but I was noticing that my body was able to do the workouts a little longer than before without stopping. I decided that a rest day between Shred workouts was just what I needed, so I kept going with that idea.

Day 4, 5 and 6 were MUCH easier. Day 6 was last night, and OMG y’all, I was able to do ALL of the jumping jacks. Most of y’all are probably like, I can do jumping jacks while cooking dinner, but for me? Doing those jumping jacks just showed me that my body is definitely changing….way more quickly than I thought, too! It’s motivating me to keep this up. In fact, I’m thinking about buying another Jillian DVD just to mix things up a bit, since we really don’t have good gym choices out where I live.

Do y’all have any recommendations for a second video of hers to get? Or heck, I’m open to ANY workout video ideas. Just keep in mind, I’m a beginner and not super fit, so P90X probably isn’t the best choice for me at this time.