Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Supreme September Superduper Challenge

I walk 3 days a week in the morning, but this is proving to be not enough.  The neighbor I walk with told me that a friend lost 40 pounds by doing workout videos.  I have workout video and I will do them for awhile, but then I get bored, bored, bored!!!! 
So last night I decided to give it another try. Here is the great site that I get my videos from: http://www.collagevideo.com/  I have ordered from them several times and what I really like is that they have previews of the workout so that you can see the instructor and their style. So if you like Jillian from the Biggest Loser you can get her right in your living room pushing and yelling at you if you like that in-your-face- style. 
For me, I like someone who knows how the body moves and can cue me so that it flows.  I don't like high pitch voices and I would rather have someone kind, but firm.  I like Kathy Voight, Leslie Sansone and Rodney Yee, but you have to find your style and speed.  I did want someone more like my bootcamp instructor and I wanted a variety of workouts that included cardio and strength training so I went with the Supreme 90 days program. It had the best reviews and since it is 90 days I felt like this could be my next challenge.  Just what I need to get my ass moving in the morning.
It takes 90 days to create a habit and I know for me to be successful I have to break it down into a shorter time frame.  So anyone want to join me for the first 30 days and do a Supreme September Superduper Challenge?  Like the June Boom let's post our workouts for the month of September.  To do the challenge here is what you have to do-
  • Minimum 30 minute workout
  • 5-6 days a week
  • Cardio or strength training
  • post on your blog daily your workout
So who is going to join me?
WE CAN DO IT!
NEVER GIVE UP!
STAY STRONG!
Always on the Move- MER

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Strong Start Secrets

Here are some strong start secrets to think about from Spark People-
Secret 1- Build a strong foundation of healthy habits
Secret 2- Spend less time exercising
Secret 3- Track food and calories
For me Secret 1- means to make healthy choices always. I am not bad at this. The more I make my own meals at home the better I am at this. It is making the right choices when I go out to eat or making it a habit to only eat half of whatever is on my plate. 
I am struggling with Secret 2.  Not so much the daily routine which is the key to the strong start, but I am to the point where I have learned to set myself up for success by wearing my workout clothes to bed so that I don't make getting ready to workout an excuse for not getting my butt moving in the morning.  It is more about pushing myself. When I did bootcamp someone else pushed me to my limit, but now that I am on my own it has been hard because I am lazy. I have to figure this out and I think I am going to go back to working out to videos, but I have to do some research to find someone I like and won't get bored with. 
I will be honest about Secret 3. I am horrible at this! Quite honestly it takes so much time to track not just food, but the calories too! If this is how I am going to lose the last 30 pounds then, I leave myself no choice, but to do what I know what I must do!
Only I can kick my own butt around and find the motivation to do this.  I have come so far and I will succeed! 
Always on the move,
Mer

Monday, August 29, 2011

Yes - there really is a hole....

I am going to admit it - there was a hole in my stomach this weekend. Not sure where it came from, but really - it must have been a big hole. You know the one, the kind of hole where everytime you eat it just lets the goodness roll out and well, you never get full. The kind of hole that just opens up and says - feed me, feed me - but in the long run you don't care what or how much goes into that hole. You figure that the hole will get full, but it is just a bottomless, black swirling hole. I got this hole, I think sometime Saturday afternoon. I am not sure if the hole appeared to be an emotional hole (ok, sort of think it is emotional because of the weekend I had), or a hole of boredom or a non-motivational hole - the fact is that I had a hole and I did not like it!!!!!!!!!


I munched a bit on Saturday. But, Sunday that hole was HUGE. I kept going into the kitchen and would grab one thing, eat it and then a little bit later (sometimes five minutes, sometimes an hour) I would venture back into the kitchen and grab something else to eat. I even found some M&M's in the back of the pantry and munched on those - thank goodness it wasn't a large bag. This went on for a few hours - oh, maybe about 3 hours, I sort of lost track - I am not really sure. That hole just kept filling up, then would empty out, and then I would not feel full. I kept wanting more. The hole started to control my brain and not my stomach. It was telling my brain that I was not full. Oh, you can have another bite of that, how about trying this today. I guess the good part was that when I finally did get out of the house and went grocery shopping that the hole was good to me. I only bought was I was supposed to bye. I didn't even have a list - but I didn't overspend, I didn't get anything bad for me and I for sure did not purchase any candy, sweets or that ice cream I thought would fulfill the hole of desire.


I am going to close up that hole. I need to close up the hole. I am a little upset with myself. I allowed the hole to win. I have come so far - how in the world did that hole appear and how in the world did it win this weekend?!?

Time to do some evaluation. Time to find the drive (again) to keep losing! I don't want to see the hole again. I am going to make sure it does not appear and win me over ever again. Oh - hole - just go away!!!

I did do my best to fix the hole yesterday. After grocery shopping I went swimming for over an hour. I did more leg work then anything and am feeling it this morning. Hot weekend, made for a refreshing fix the hole method!!!

Staying MOtivated MO

PS - Update on my friend and how I wrote just the other day about Julianne. She left us early Saturday morning and is now flying with angels. I will truly miss her and my heart is breaking!! May her boys know that they were loved by a wonderful mother and that she raised them well!!!!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Follow your DREAMS!!!!!

Today's post is all about following your dreams!!! Not a weight loss dream, but one where you really have this vision, you strive to meet it and you finally get to fulfill it!!!!


Many years ago, at the age of 12, I had a dream - to be a babysitter. Yes, funny to have that dream, but summer money was going to be coming my way and I loved kids. My dream came true when my Mom told me that there was a lady just down the street with two wonderful little boys and that she needed me to help her out over the summer. That summer went on for years, with two more boys to add to the mix. Some of the best years of my life!!! I am even blessed that one of the boys is my God Son. The boys are fully grown now and doing really well with being husbands and following some of their own dreams.

Their mother, a very active and loving person, also followed her dreams some 21 months ago. She joined the Peace Corps and has been in Jordan doing great work and enjoying every moment of it. Her updates via email made you feel like you were there - seeing all the action, being at the many weddings she would attend and just knowing that she was a successful dream catcher!!!

Sad news came my way last night, that Julianne was very sick. The news I heard did not give me a full picture of her illness. Being the google fan that I am and wondering if the Peace Corps had an update and knowing contact with the boys would be limited at this point, somehow I found a blog that she started. Only one simple entry, but pictures to show that she had a fun time in Jordan and she did follow a life long dream!!! http://anastbasta.com/index.html - this is so Julianne - pasta in the name - of course. She will soon be at peace and moving onto a world with God at her side, be with her husband again and life for the boys will change.

I am truly BLESSED to have known the most wonderful, inspiring, glowing and dream follower in Julianne!!!! May her family feel the warmth of her love for years!!! My heart is breaking, but pleased that I have known such a great person. Time for me to fully embrace my duties as a god-parent with my "first" son. Sending them loving prayers right now.

Dreams do come true!!! They really do. Keep reaching for the stars and someday you might just be like Julianne, 67 years old, active and get the chance to make your lifelong dream come true!!!

A very sad Staying MOtivated MO

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Dear John

When I was young I remember watching that popular television show about the Mobile Army Medical gang - I would watch this with my Dad every week. You know the one (or at least I hope you know, but are you too young??)

 

I loved this show. Not only did I get to be with my dad, but it was a funny show. Not too much for my little junior high ears, nothing like any of the sitcoms you see today. Heck, I remember the whole family (all 8 of us) watching the final episode from start to finish (back in the days when you didn't have a VCR and well, you just made sure you were home to watch the final episode). I now watch some re-runs with my son and so glad that he enjoys the show, too.

 MASH-tv-show-13.jpg

While watching this show I was introduced to the "Dear John" letters that military guys/gals would receive. The letters were from their "sweatheart" back home saying that they would had found someone else and decided to make sure their guy overseas was aware of it. There was even one episode where Radar O'Reilly got a Dear John on a record (yes, the show is that old - no CD's or IPODs in this sitcom). I am sure that our own current military receives these today, too. :(

I got to thinking the other day about Dear John letters - just something I do from time to time - (ha, ha). You see, I have been struggling with 5 pounds. I keep losing and gaining. I have been up and down, down and up with the same 5 pounds since about June. You can call it a Plateau if you want and some of it has not been because those five pounds just want to stick around. I will say that it is up to me to make sure I am consistent. I have been doing my best, can do better and will do better!! It is just time to get rid of these 5 pounds - enough is enough - give up the ghost!! I thought - why not write a Dear John to those 5 pounds.....heck, it just might work. So............without further ado - here is my Dear John to my 5 pounds:

Dear Five Pounds:

I have struggled with writing this letter. I know that you are attached to me and you have enjoyed many years with me, but it is time for us to part ways. Oh, the fun we have had. The eating, the exercising, the ups, the downs, being with me for so long - it is hard to let me go. You have been in my life for so long!! I am fun to hang with, but it is time for us to both spread our wings. Time to fly and be free!! 

I have found another pound I would like to be close to. You know the one, I have desired him for years!!! My Onderland Man is calling!!! I am very attracted to Onederland and I know he is attracted to me. I have been working hard and he is seeing the changes in me. I am not really sure when I will be with him, but I want to be with him forever and ever!! I am going to work hard and soon we will embrace. There is no need to worry about me, I am happy, feeling strong and getting healthy with this new relationship. You have made me happy, but there is a new man in my life. 

As much as you would like to stick around, it is time for us to go our seperate ways. It is going to be hard to let you go, but you are going to have to let me go, too. Why stick around with all those other pounds? Eventually they will all slip away and Onederland will have taken over!!!

I wish you well and giving you big hugs as we say good-bye!!!


Love Always -

Staying MOtivated MO

Monday, August 22, 2011

You know you've come far (in this weight loss journey) when...

...you open up the refrigerator after 8 pm at night and you actually don't pull out anything to eat.

You know you've come far when...you open up the refrigerator a second time and wonder - Why? Is there really anything in there for you that you should have at this point in time? That you really are NOT hungry and you close the door and walk away!!!

You know you've come far when...you are doing 30 minutes of balance ball exercises while watching TV on a Sunday night. AND you are really enjoying it. You don't feel like you HAVE to be doing it, but that you WANT to do it!!

You know you've come far when...you realize that carbs can be delicious, but really, they are not what you crave anymore! A vegetable, a piece of fruit - yum!!!

You know you've come far when...you spend three days doing door to door popcorn sales with your Cub Scout and you are not tired after doing 2 hours of walking each day, pulling a wagon and standing in the hot sun being your Scouts support system (ok - it was hard to be upbeat on the 3rd day, but he wants to hit a goal this year and I will be there for him all the way)!!

You know you've come far when...you wake up craving a vegetable & egg scramble for breakfast (and not a trip to McDonald's or Starbucks).

You know you've come far when...you jump at the chance to go for a walk with your neighbor at the last minute and you really enjoy every moment of it!!

You know you've come far when...you are not getting that frustrated with going up and down with the same 5 pounds as last month. I will continue to be positive! I will keep up the good work, eventually those 5 pounds will be gone forever and I will start to tackle the next 5!!!

You know you've come far when...you feel like you have more energy!

You know you've come far when...you finally realize that getting more then 5 hours of sleep is really important!!!

You know you've come far when...you are craving a glass of water, rather then a soda!

You know you've come far when...you feel good everyday and want to keep losing weight. That no matter what obstacle gets in your way you are going to keep pushing forward!!

You know you've come far when...you make exercise part of your daily routine (and you are not complaining about doing it).

You know you've come far when...you are craving a nice ripe nectarine and not a bowl of ice cream.

You know you've come far when...you look forward to receiving the support you need!!


And then you think ~~~~

You know you still have more to do...when you can't wait to fit into those smaller pants!

You know you still have more to do...when you want to get into a smaller bra (LOL)

You know you still have more to do...because you want to keep feeling good about yourself everyday!!

You know you still have more to do...because you feel sexier and the boys are noticing and you want to keep going with that natural high!!!!!!!!!

You know you still have more to do...because you want to hit the small, medium and large goals in your weight loss journey!!!

You know you still have more to do...when you did not make healthy decisions and ate whatever, whenever you wanted the other day.

You know you still have more to do...when you REALIZE and SAY IT OUT LOUD that you did not drink enough water today!

You know you still have more to do...when you realize that you will continue to do well because you are supporting others that are also struggling.


The Pros - the Cons - it is all a journey. A journey I will not give up on. I have come far, want to go farther and I am going to hit more of my goals. No matter how hard it is to climb up that hill lose this weight, go that extra mile, or struggle with my decisions I am going to keep going. I feel good, and know that I am looking better each day!! This time I will ACHIEVE ALL of my weight loss goals!!! I want to get there faster, but it is all up to me. I am my own decision maker!! Looking forward to my final item on the list to say - You know you've come far in this weight loss journey when...you are at Goal Weight!!!!


Staying MOtivated MO

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Inspiration comes from Frustration- Workout Ideas

Like Mo sometimes I sleep through my workouts and I get really frustrated that I did not get it in.  My days are so full that I don't get a chance to do much of anything to "add" a workout in.  Sometimes inspiration comes from frustration which is what happened this week with my return to work and the lack of a bootcamp instructor since she decided to stop so that she could sleep in. 

Here are some ideas on how to get in a workout while working at home or the office-
  1. Friend of mine told me that when she goes to the bathroom that she does 30 squats! What a great way to get some strengthening in. I thought I could also do 30 lunges or 30 dead-lifts. 
  2. At the photocopy machine, I stand in front of the machine and do calf raises until I am done copying.
  3. When I have something to read through I will do a wall sit for as long as I can.  To challenge myself I might lift one leg at a time.
  4. If I need a moment to move I might get up and do some wall push ups and will do them until my arms are tired.
  5. I will also do some tricep dips or side bends on my office chair when I am thinking for a moment.
  6. The shoulder roll is a great stretch and so is the seated figure four. 
  7. I bought some resistance bands to do some toe and foot stretches, but there are a millon things you can do with some bands: tricep extensions, bicep curls and shoulder presses just to name a few. They are great because I can fold them up and take them wherever I want.   
  8. I do sit on a big red ball and so I do bounce while I am working. It gets the blood going and I am more awake after I do that. I also I  do some sitting cat and cow stretches.
  9. When I get home there are few things around the front door that I can grab and do. Hoola hooping is so much fun. My sister had it made for me, but all it is PVC pipe with some pretty ribbon.  Jump rope and do some planks. All 3 activites I do in about 5 minutes. Then, I am off and running to get dinner going. 
  10. Dancing while making dinner. Just blast your favorite tunes and shake that booty. It always brings a smile to my husband's face and the kids just join in on the fun.
Whatever you do just don't stay still!
Always on the Move- MER

Compliments A Plenty!!!

I finally got out of my funk - which was nice. I did get in a full hour of walking with my sister last night, and didn't have to deal with my little one, so it was a good workout kind of night. Still on track with my 14 + 14 = 28 days in August workout plan. I have only missed two days and have 1 still left to go without, but will not let that 1 day go to waste!!! I have been putting in my 14 + 14 + 14 = 42 minutes (or add another 14 to get 56 minutes of a workout in) each day - I am really enjoying this. I like to thank Alan for that June Boom push!!! Exercise everyday in June. My June & July were pretty crazy and I am finally getting it into gear that no matter what gets in my way putting exercise into my daily schedule is just the right fit!!!!

With that being said, I am seeing the compliments coming from near and far. Last week as I was setting out for one of my evening walks with my little sis she was in awe of how I looked. I was puzzled, even told her that the workout pants I was wearing were big on me. However, she told me that something about my top half looked really good. That maybe I was going to lose that 14 pounds (one can hope) in this month.
That compliment made me feel good.....(one compliment - ding!)
 

Then last night I met up with some relatives of mine. Well, actually if you want to know they are ex-relatives - is that what they are called when you are not married to their family anymore??? (LOL) It was nice to see them. One of the sisters I had not seen in over 10 months or more. She was gushing at how good I looked. She wanted to know what weight loss plan I was following and I just told her of my success - no fast food, no sodas, no eating after the dinner hour, portion control, no seconds, packing my lunch, eating at home more, and finally doing the exercising - oh, wait - can't forget that I am drinking more water, too. Her sister finally joined us and they both could not stop talking at how much I was glowing. They both were even impressed at how good my hair looked.....(two and three compliment - ding!)


....which then brings me to my hair appointment today. I know you will all be jealous, but I have to share that I don't have any gray hair. Ok, maybe there is one or two in there, but I just can't see them. My hair dresser can't see any either. I am no longer coloring my hair and that is saving me tons of money. My natural hair is fully back! I am also trying to grow my hair long to donate it to Locks of Love. At today's appointment my hair dresser was loving my new look. She was impressed to hear that I have lost 40 pounds. She then kept saying how healthy my hair is. Not that it was that bad before, but she sees an improvement. I want to believe that the healthy hair is because I am eating healthy now. What a great compliment - healthy hair and my hair dresser can't wait to see a "skinnier me" at my next appointment....(four compliments - ding!)




From that appointment I had to make sure I met up with my OBGYN to have a follow up appointment that well, was about 6 months later then it was supposed to be. 2 hours of waiting and I finally was the one that was hearing my doctor say she was so sorry for the wait, where I thought I would be the one saying I was so sorry for not coming in sooner. This part was the best - as we were talking I happened to tell my doctor that I had dropped 40 pounds since January. Wouldn't you believe it - my doctor started to bow down to me. You know - the kind of bow where you put your hands out in front of you and then say things like "we're not worthy"!! Can I just say that her compliment made me feel really good. I have gotten many compliments, but it was just so cool to have your own doctor totally be so happy for you, even if you don't know them that well. I left that office today walking on cloud nine....(fifth compliment - ding!)


Not that I am looking for compliments a plenty everyday, but to have those five is motivation! I am empowered to keep going! I am feeling good, energized and I am so ready for my next accomplishment!!! Many more pounds to go, but I won't look to the final outcome. I will keep going, continue to avoid the temptations, continue the exercise, continue smiling, continue knowing that I am doing this for me! Compliments or not - Me, myself and I will get to goal and will be successful!!!!!!!!!!!

Staying MOtivated MO

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Blaaaaaaaaah kinda day

Ever have one of those days? You wake up, frustrated that you slept through the alarm and now have no time to exercise?? Wow - what a concept for me!!! In the past I have just said - oh, well, I will get in my workout another day. Today - I really could feel that I needed wanted my 5 am workout. Nope - wasn't going to happen. By the time I heard the radio in the background it was almost about 5:45 - time to get in the shower, start my day, grab the paper, get dressed, have breakfast, make lunches - there was no time for a good solid workout? Oh - how I missed it this morning.

 

Can't take a walk at lunch today - have errands that have to be done today - blaaaaaah

Might try to do a 10 - 15 minute walk for a work break - but if I don't do it soon, then I will be in the heat of the Sun (supposed to be about 95 here today) - blaaaaaaahhhhh

Last nights walk with me sis was okay - but there was "drama" with my son and the fact that he didn't want to follow the bike riding rules and well, a car was involved and it just was not a good feeling for me when your 10 year old decides that he just does not want to listen to you and rides off into the distance. So, do I let him ride with us tonight or tell him he has to walk? Or do we not go and I get my workout in some other way - blaaaaahhhhhhhh

Just having a blaaaahhhh kind of day. Want everyone to leave me alone at work, don't want to have to deal with anything, but really just want to go and workout - WOW - what a great feeling - wanting to exercise - loving this new life I have back in my life - just have to get out of this blaaaahhhh moment.

Have a good day - hoping mine will move from blaaaaahhhh to WONDERFUL!!!!


Staying MOtivated MO

Monday, August 15, 2011

Three Black Skirts....

A few weeks ago I was visiting Mer and family. We always have a great time and this was no different. One evening we ventured into this little used book store. I love to read, but most of the time when I read I fall asleep or just don't even finish the book (in fact, I am still working on my 100 days of weight loss - crazy...finish it already). Anyways, I thought I would look around a bit. Maybe even find a fun book. First I found a really cute book called
1,003 Great Things About Friends

You could totally see that this was a used book. I cried a bit when there was a note in the front of the book dated December 2001 and said - "Donna - Hope you enjoy this little bit of light reading. I miss your cheerful disposition!!! Love Always, Connie" It made me wonder - did Donna pass away, she really was not a good friend of Connie's or maybe she didn't like to be reminded of her cheerfulness (LOL). I had to pick this book up, it looked like fun and well, it would make me remember how good a friend I had with Mer. A good way to end the day or start my day when I think of a friend.

"Without friends, your address book would be blank."

"A friend will tell you secrets she's been sworn to silence about"

"You always have someone to complain to"

My God-Daughter then helped me find a new reading series for my son. We picked out "How to Train your Dragon" - we have finished the first in the series - can't wait to read the rest.

Then as I was looking over the "self help" or "diet" or "inspirational" books - really looking for the Sex in the City books (I had this urge to see if they had them), I see this bright pink book. Pulled it out and the cover reminded me of Audrey Hepburn in the movie "Breakfast at Tiffany's" - it was just cute and I thought, what the heck, let's see what it is all about.
Three black skirts: all you need to survive [Book]

Really - all I need to survive are Three Black Skirts. What could this book be all about? Well, the table of contents included: 
  • Well-Being
  • Style
  • Life Skills
  • Career
  • Mood Management
  • Emotional Rescue
  • Spirit
  • Giving Back
What the heck - a low cost of $8.00 (okay, you can purchase it online for only $1.00), but it looked like a good, fun, uplifting read. Plus, I figure with my re-found lifestyle and the desire to keep losing weight, I was going to need Three Black Skirts! I picked this up. My total purchase for the day was more then I expected, but I was happy with all of my selections.

The other morning I finally had a moment to sit down and read. That pink book was screaming - read me, read me. Wow - what an easy and enjoyable book. The first chapter is titled "Balance - The Whole Shebang" I could not have asked for a better way to have this new book come into my life. Wouldn't you know it, just the first chapter re-introduced me to many things that I have been working on. Here are the highlights....
  • Bare Bones Basics for Well-Being: Drink a lot of water, eat something raw and something green at every meal (even in winter), don't fear garlic, sleep eight hours, exercise once a day and try to worry less.
  • Attitude - Melted cheese is not going to kill you; anxiety might. Budget your worries. Enter and leave the day on a positive note. How well you feel depends on the spirit in which you do things and the best way is calmly. Positive thinking is like good posture. Don't forget to cry. Beware of spinning your wheels on too many "head miles".
  • Roadblocks to Balance: make sure you have balance, don't let the road blocks get you down. To strike a balance first make a list of the six main areas of your life that represent your personal needs
  • Diet: Improving your diet has less to do with what you take away and much more to do with what you add.
  • Drugs and Alcohol: find a natural high, not a chemical high. Make exercise your high (go figure)
  • Exercise: The math of exercise is simple: The less you do the less you want to do, the more you move the more you want to move. Exercise lets you feel and express your whole body, evens out  your moods, strengthens your bones, improves your balance, oxygenates your blood, shakes out emotional knots, and makes you feel alive in the fullest sense of the word.
  • Right Ways to get to Sleep: Warm milk, a light read, soothing music, deep-relaxation exercise, concoct a dream before sleep and other suggestions...
  • Soul Food - everyone needs beauty. Make sure you get a daily blast of beauty and let it blossom inside you. The soul cries out for it, and the body can't flourish without it.
That is just the first chapter. I can't wait to read the rest of this book!!!! I will share more from time to time as I make my way to the end. I do see myself reading this from cover to cover (and before the end of the year is done). I will purchase one new Black Skirt to celebrate the final chapter - no, wait - it has to be three!

What are you reading at the moment? What book would you recommend that is fun, uplifting and just one that you would enjoy sharing?

Staying MOtivated MO

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Slideshow of my summer for the first day of school

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I make a slideshow for my students to see on the first day of school. It is so that they get to know me and my family.
Reflecting back my summer was filled with lots of learning. There is nothing wrong with it, but I think I took over 8 semester units of coursework, which is more than I have ever taken in 8 weeks! It was more stressful than summers past and because of all the stress at the end I have gained back 6 pounds. It makes me want to cry, but I will not. I will move forward and focus on that.
To make myself motivated I cleaned out my closet last night and put out any clothes that were too big for me. I am still a size 10 and I plan to stay there.  I  have to reset my goals, plan and carry out my plan. I just have been so tired and I have been sleeping in trying to catch up on the sleep I did not get this summer. With school starting for me it brings routine which I desperately need right now.  It will be tough, but better for me to stay on track.
I am back at the daily renewal to the committment of my goals.  I have to do this for myself. I need to get back to sleeping more, moving more and eating well.  I need to work smarter and remind myself that these small setbacks are just that, right? It is such a struggle to stay in balance and to stay on track with all that I do it is so hard to track my food, water and exercise, but I know writing everything down works for me. It brings that level of awareness up for me so that I don't go for that second helping or accept that bottle of beer or take more than two bites of that dessert. 
So do what you must to make it happen for you-
KEEP IT UP!
YOU CAN DO IT!
NEVER GIVE UP!
Always on the move- MER

Friday, August 12, 2011

Ahhhh - the Weekend

What do you have on your plate for this weekend? Wait - oh - wait - not your plate of food, but plate of fun, work, things to do - that kind of plate (giggle, giggle).

Ok - before I talk about my weekend - just have some at the top of my head thoughts about how things have been going for me. It has been sort of a weird start to the school year for me and my son. Last year I was dealing with 30 Scouts, leading all of them as a group, then doing a smaller group at my house once a week, I was on the board for my Parents Group and let me see, what else?? Things this year have totally changed. The Parents group fell apart - lack of support from the other 70 members. I now have other leaders doing meetings for the Scouts, other parents are stepping up to help with duties, and I don't feel overwhelmed. My son normally does soccer in the Fall, but one thing led to another and well let's just say it never happened. We won't do soccer until November now, and it might be fun because it is a indoor soccer leaque. So, in a nutshell - things have been nice since the beginning of school. We have not had to been here, go there, or be on the run after I got off of work. (I better be careful what I wish for - it can all change in a the drop of a hat).

The true treat has been doing my neighborhood walks with my little sis. She has been coming over and we walk around the neighborhood. My son is loving it!!! He gets to hop on his bike and ride ahead of us from time to time. I am not only getting a good workout out, but getting chit chat time with my sis and my son is out of the house away from TV, electronics and he is getting to spend time with me.

Well, this week took a bit of a twist. My sis has been busy with visiting family, so we only got in one walk so far (we are hoping to do one tonight), my son came down with a huge allergy attack that has had him miserable for the last three days and well, it has just been a wierd kind of in a funk week. See - I told you, things change at the drop of hat.

It just made me realize how truly blessed I am. How I have come so far!!! It might only be IS about 40 pounds, but what a great accomplishment. I am feeling good, want to keep going so I can continue to look good, have more energy, to keep up with my son as he continues to have tons of energy....just so much to be grateful for!!!!

The good part - the WEEKEND IS UPON US. My mommy duties are on hold until Sunday night. I want to do so much. I want to get in a workout, go get my nails done (and eyebrows too), want to pick up some cubby bookshelf things to add to my son's room, want to clean the house, get in another workout, going to a  a family function on Saturday night, read a book, enjoy a nice end of summer evening on my front porch, do the weeding in the front year, get in another workout.....the list goes on and on and on...

.....but, all this week I have been wishing for a date. Not that I really know anyone that would ask me out or that I am too sure of myself to ask someone out, but have you ever had that need to go out - out on a date that is? Maybe with a good girlfriend, but more so with your husband, wife, girlfriend, boyfriend (significant other)? A night to try a new restaurant, go to a comedy show, take a nice evening walk holding hands? What about finding a nice art gallery on a Sunday afternoon, then sipping ice tea at a local cafe and watching people come and go (oh, I love to people watch)....Or what about going dancing - DJ music or a good old fashion local band? Take in a movie that you really want to see, then talk about it afterwards while enjoying a nice summer sunset? Yep - that is a wish I had for this weekend. Oh, well, another time, another weekend ---- just wanted to share with you what has been on my mind.

I am looking forward to a very productive, fulfilling, socializing kind of weekend!!! Oh - and I am down 2 more pounds!!! Promise myself to not let it all come back!! What do you have planned? What did you do (if you are reading this on Monday)?

Staying MOtivated MO

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Summer Vacations Ends- A New Beginning

It is  a bittersweet week for me. My summer vacation officially ends and I report back to work on Wednesday morning.  I have had a heck of a busy summer. I took 11 semester units of course work. More than I have ever taken in 8 weeks! I was only required to do 6 units, but I have always been an over achiever. 
On top of that I have been spending time with my fast growing kids. I became a teacher so that I could spend my time with my kids during holidays and summers. This summer was no different. We went to Happy Hollow every week that I could manage a 2-3 hour window. We went to Great America 3 times so that I could hang out in the Wave Pool all afternoon with my 5 year old. We had pajama mornings where we watched TV and hung out together.  Just being a "stay at home summer mom" will be something that my kids will remember where my goal was to enjoy my children during their childhood. 
We ended our summer with a visit to Blue Oak Knoll Ranch owned my dear friends. My daughter spent a week on their 10 acre ranch horseback riding, running wild, feeding baby goats, and having hours of free time to read and write.  And she did it technology free.  It was awesome for her to do that.  We got to spend a few days with them as well and it was so easy to just relax and watch the meteor shower in the night. Magical to spend time up with good friends, big sky and open land.  Nothing feels quiet freer than that!
Now both my kids are starting new adventures at new schools. My 14 year old is starting High School! She is at a school nearby and she will be the new kid since all of her friends are going to other schools.  She is outgoing and friendly so I know she will adjust and make new friends in no time. My 5 year old is starting at the neighborhood school. I registered him today.  He is excited to be going to school with his friends across the street and I am too. I am hoping to meet some parents in the neighborhood.  This opens up two new communities that we will be involved with. 
I am renewing my goals to be healthy and strong. I got lax with my eating habits, but now it is time to get back on it.  I know what I have to do. The six fist-sized meals is what works for me.  A protein and a carb with two meals with servings of vegetables and fruit. I like that I get one free day to eat what I want. That is the day that I can have a glass of wine or beer and dessert. 
I have the exercise habit down and exercise about 4-5 days a week with or without my bootcamp.  My bootcamp instructor did decide to stop, but the bootcamp ladies have decided to keep meeting on our own.  The only thing that may stop us is the strange men that show up around the park. Last Friday while walking a man in a truck slowed down, stopped and got out of his truck while we walked by. We crossed the street and stayed in the neighborhood. He made us feel uncomfortable.  Then, Monday while I was gone a few other ladies showed up to workout together and a half naked man was running through the park.  Both incidences were reported to the police, but we are all concerned and are actively looking for an indoor place to workout so we can feel safe.  I will not let this stop me even if it means that I jump rope in my courtyard or run around my block. I will find a way to exercise. I have asked to buy a bike trainer so that I can get some more intense cardio in since the running is proving to be hard on my body.  I am going to do this no matter what even if it takes me another year to lose the 25 pounds I will not quit until I get there!
So the new school year starts with a lot of personal adventures and work I am sure will have a few of its own. It always does, but that is the beauty of working with children and teachers. You never know what the learning will be like until you work with them and get know what makes them tick.  All I can say is I am looking forward to it.
Bring it on!
Let me at it!
Head on into the new school year!
Welcome 2011-2012!
I am ready for you!
Always on the move- MER

Monday, August 8, 2011

Just a Quiet Monday


Quiet Monday - not much to say (or write for that matter). I had a very productive and fun weekend. Friday night was a local Baseball game with the family. My son was given the opportunity to throw out one of the first pitches that night. He did an excellent job!!!! Right over the plate!!! I had most of my family with me, we had a good view of the game, it was Scout night and I saw tons of people I know - could not have asked for a better evening. And yes, I did enjoy a nice few bites of those Chili Cheese Fries with my son, but I did not have more then a few bites, and most times on the way home from an evening out I will munch when I get home - not this time. Overall a very successful, enjoyable evening. 

I am on track with my 28 days (14 + 14 = 28 for my number 14 August month). So far I have only taken one day off - Friday was just too busy, as well as waking up 60 minutes after my alarm went off. My sister and I have been walking in the afternoons. I am so glad, too. I was loving my morning walks with the neighbors, so having my little sis come over has been grand!!! We put in a long long walk on Saturday - almost 1.5 hours. Sunday I did yard work and I thought it was more then 2 hours, but it turned out to only be 1.5 hours - I think it felt longer because I decided to do it at 3 pm - the heat of the day...but I did get that front hedge trimmed, raked up the mess and did a full garbage can of trash. Tonight it might be the weeding and tackling the front rock area - if not, then a walk with Aman riding next to me - he is loving the walks because he gets to bike ride with me.

I did more cleaning of the mess of the spare bedroom - that Day Camp cleanup is never ending - The Elliptical just needs to be dusted off and I can get back to it. Have decided to keep it in the spare bedroom rather then move it by the TV - so going to have to find some good old fashion rockin music to keep me on it for a good workout. Can't wait to add that to my many other workout options!! Sometimes working out at home is much better then the gym - just make sure you use all that you have available to you!!

I did some balance ball crunches the other day. In the course of a varied 45 minutes workout I think I put in about 100 of those crunches. My middle hurt a bit for a few days, but that is no reason to not try it again - the pain is good for the soul and the body!!!!

Hope that you have a spectacular week!!! My goal by Sunday - giving away too big to even think about wearing again clothes pile.


Staying MOtivated MO

OH - and thanks to all that have been reading. We have hit over 5,000 views!!!!!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

A Successful Back of the Closet Moment!!

Have you ever had one of those days where you just don't know what you are going to wear? The day that you need to open up the closet, or pull open that drawer and find just the right pair of slacks, or the perfect button down shirt, pull out the iron and make it look all nice and such? Kind of like going out on a date with your loved one or a I-am-going-to-get-that-job-today interview kind of outfit. You know - the one outfit that you really take the time to put together? Today was such that kind of day for me, but it wasn't for a date. I was going to a funeral and I was bound and determined not to wear all black. A few years ago a good good friend of my Mom's - we called her Aunt - passed away and I was reminded that as much as a funeral is sad, that she wanted us to come in our reds, purples, pinks and blues to let her know that she was a color of sunshine! I decided that I was not going to go so dramatic with the color today and didn't want to go too fancy, but would find something suitable.

I pulled on my black pants and looked in the closet for a top that was not going to cause me to sweat too much and was going to fit in a good way. I was searching high and low, even had a moment where I was going to put on a dress, but no, I am not so sure I wanted to deal with the panty hose (my legs are very white - have to have those hose). I thought I had an outfit, but nope, it just looked too much like all black to me. I kept searching. I figured I am down a few sizes, why not search into the very back of that closet and see what I can find.  Oh, the pant suit with the blue - darn it, where are the pants to go with those - not here, where did they go - did I get rid of them? Keep looking....what about that black and white checkered kind of jacket pant suit outfit - no wait - you can't wear that - it has long sleeves - you are going to be hot hot hot - and look, there is no way you are going to fit into that anymore - two sizes too big - put it down. (AND don't forget to put it into the "give away" pile this weekend). Keep looking. What about this tan /brown top - it might work - but it is always so small in the bust - will it fit - does it look nice with the black pants? Search, Search, Search - not that, not this - oh, what to wear, what to wear??

Then - low and behold - there is a pair of brown pants. Hey, where did these come from and will they look nice with the tan top? Oh My Goodness - look at this - do these pants really still have the tags on them? What the heck? ........Have you ever been one that would go shopping, try on something new and totally convince yourself and say "I am losing weight, these pants are just about right, and look at the price, I am going to buy them and I will be able to wear them in less then a month." Yep - been there!!! ......The sad part is those pants must have been purchased more then 4 years ago, because well, I just have a funny feeling. Let's see - do they fit? YEP - Success!!! How about with the shirt? YEP - Success!!!! Now the shoes...oh, oh, oh - in the back of my closet are those brown heels. I could pull those off, right? Will they hurt?


The famous Imelda closet of shoes...just a few you know...
Just as a side note - I had to have styling shoes. This funeral I was attending was for the father of a good friend of my sisters. This friend has always had the best shoes. She has high heels, low heels, knockout shoes. Years ago I called her Imelda - for Imelda Marcos, the wife of Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos - her extravagant spending and owning more then 2,700 pair of shoes    This friend would come home from those once a year weekend shopping trips and have several boxes of new shoes. I love giving her a hard time about it, but she loves her shoes. So, I had to have the right shoes - LOL

But, I am so getting off topic. Back to my outfit. It all worked. A new never been worn more then 4 years old pair of pants - walla!!! A stuffed in the back of the closet not worn in over (oh, let's not count the years) shirt - walla!! And a pair of heels (which by the way I have not worn in a very long time - my weight was always way too much for heels). Here is the product of my search:

More of a side view pic and this is minus the iron to the shirt, the my done up hair and the makeup
My sister said I looked great. Her friend said she barely recognized me. We had to walk a bit of ways from the chapel to the burial, but I didn't sweat, I was confident and the shoes didn't even hurt my feet after an hour of standing. I am so loving this losing weight system I got going on - woo hoo!!!!

What do you have in the back of your closet that you haven't put on in years?
You might be surprised what you find.


Staying MOtivated MO

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Every Woman Should Know...

Sort of had a bad night - got an email I didn't want to get and will only say THIS - that I actually did have  a "match" from the speed dating, and well after one 45 minute phone call he believes we are just not "compatible". I won't lie - it sort of hurt.

I almost went to the refrigerator to eat away the pain. Go figure. Bedtime with Aman included Mad Libs. Do you remember those things? They give you a story with many blanks, you have to fill in words to finish it off - a Noun, Verb, Adjective, depending on what needs to be used for that missing space. We then had a good time laughing at how funny the story was with our own creative words. I realized that it was good practice for both him and I in our grammatical twists. We then had our nightly tickle fight. It sort of got me out of my funk. I feel asleep for about 20 minutes with Aman and upon crawling out of his bed instead of returning to the computer, the TV or the refrigerator I went to bed. I got in a full 7 hours of sleep - WOW !! Awoke this morning and did a good 42 minute workout - plus some (August is the number 14 - three times 14 = 42 - LOL)....then as I was reaching for my tall glass of water I saw on the refrigerator this little poem thing I have and I won't say that I needed to read it, but I am glad that I did.
There are other fish in the sea and this will not deter me!!!

I would like to share it with you today - oh, and sorry guys - more for the woman today, but you can share with friend or special significant other.


EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
that she can't change the length of her calves, the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
that her childhood may not have been perfect...but its over...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
what she would and wouldn't do for love or more...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
how to live alone...even if she doesn't like it...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
whom she can trust,
whom she can't,
and why she shouldn't take it personally...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
where to go...
be it to her best friend's kitchen table...
or a charming inn in the woods...
when her soul needs soothing...

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW...
what she can and can't accomplish in a day...a month...and a year...



Enjoy your day - may it be spectacular!!!!!
Staying MOtivated MO

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

14 is a Magical Number

When you were little do you remember watching Sesame Street? Maybe you have a little one at home that has you seeing those fussy puppet characters all over again. I remember. It it a good memory - Oscar the Grouch, the Corner Store, Big Bird, Burt & Ernie (too cute), the Letter of the Day, and the Number of the Day. The one character I was not very fond of was THE COUNT. I don't know if it was the laugh or the fact that sometimes his segments went on and on. I mean, it was cute, but then you had the HAA HAA HAA in your head for the rest of the day because he finally reached the magical number of the day.

 Well, that same scenario came into my head today. My magic "Count" Number for August is going to be 14!!

I jumped on the scale this morning. I wanted to do it yesterday, it being the 1st of the month, but the first day of school kept me on my toes, so I didn't have time to "officially" weigh myself. This morning's number was not the greatest. However, I can honestly say that my month of  June and July turned into more of a maintenance kind of summer for me. I am officially up 2 pounds since the end of May. I am at 239 - according to my handy dandy scale. That number got me to thinking more about my August goals. It is really important to have goals each month as you are working on losing weight and I do believe you need to do the same with maintenance. Not only goals in weight loss, but goals in life, too!!

I saw that number and proceeded to think about it during my morning workout. What is that number? Where do I want to be by the end of August? What do I need to do this month in regards to my lifestyle changes? Where do I want to be in the next few months?

Why the Number 14? Many reasons, but my Mom and my God-Daughter came to mind. My mother passed away 14 years ago this July. 14 years ago this last Saturday I was then blessed with the most wonderful God-Daughter. The passing and the birth were just about 1 week apart. That little girl came into my life (and Mer's) just a few weeks early, and if I remember correctly she was close to a month early (I am sure Mer can help me out with this calculation). As sad as it was to see my Mom pass away at a very young age of 60 with Alzheimers, I do believe that she wanted to make sure I had a happy memory with her passing. Both have names that get shortened all the time, like a nickname. Less then 9 months later Mer was at my father's funeral when my Uncle got all weepy because he found out that his older sister (my Mom) shares the same nickname as Mer's little one. Mer then came to me and wanted to make sure that it didn't make for a sad memory for me. It is totally opposite of that. I love that I get so much joy out of having my god-daughter share such a special name with my Mom. So with that - I am dedicating my August 2011 to two ladies in my life.

Putting the 14 into full circle                                
  • Going to drop another 14 pounds in August. When I hit that goal I will be down 50 pounds since beginning this journey back in January 2011!!
  • 14 + 14 = 28 - going to work out 28 days in the month of August. Not a full 31, but that does give me three days of rest here and there. (two days down - 26 more to go)
  • 14 + 14 + 14 = 42 - put in atleast 42 minutes of exercise a day. If I do another 14, then great - that is close to a full hour. Certain days I might have to break them up, but the goal is 42 to 56 minutes a day. (Ok, I don't have to be exact, but I liked the 14 concept there)
  • 1 + 4 = 5....going to drink 5 glasses of water a day using my 16.5 ounce straw in the cup container (I drink more with a straw then just a water bottle). I am not drinking enough and need to do so. My goal is to get in those 5 all before I finish my work day and if I get 1 or 2 more in before and after work, then I am getting plenty of water for the day.
  • Going to give away more then 14 shirts and might even find 14 pairs of pants/skirts hidden in the back of my closet to add to the pile (do I really have that many clothes - LOL). Why keep the stuff that is too big for me - I will never go back!!!
  • Going to spend 14 minutes of reflective quiet time each day. Read a book or just have a peaceful moment remembering happy times, sad times, times of struggle, times of joy, time of inspiration, time to set more goals - time for me!!
At the end of the month - down 14 pounds - feeling good and all - I want to go into a store on the 14th hour  - pick up a pair of size 14 jeans/pants and see if they fit. I don't think they will, but I am going to see what happens. I am pretty close - even shrinking out of the 18 I have right now. My shirts are in the 16/14 range - so you never know. I won't be disappointed, but I can then see where I am clothes size wise and move onto my next set of goals!!


Staying MOtivated MO