Wednesday, August 28, 2013

my new look

What do you think? Fun to have a new look.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Five Surprising Foods that help you LOSE Weight!

This post is brought to you by The Biggest Loser Resort.

It turns out you can eat and lose weight. That's right, I said it: eating certain foods (real, tangible foods – not ice cubes and chalky protein shakes) will actually help you lose that extra weight. Surely, she must be joking, you say to yourself. Which foods would help me lose weight? She must be crazy! Well, to assure you of my sincerity (and sanity), I'll even tell you which foods have been proven to help you reach your weight loss goals.

This grain-like staple is a perfect substitute for white rice and pasta and is more related to spinach than cereal. Quinoa also offers a healthy boost of protein, making it an ideal choice for vegetarians. Quinoa is high in calcium, B vitamins and iron, and since it's naturally gluten-free, it has a home in nearly any diet. Use quinoa in place of other grains; for example, use a cup of cooked quinoa as the base for a delicious, healthy risotto instead of rice, and reduce your calories while boosting nutrients.

It's no secret that protein keeps you feeling fuller for longer periods of time, and eggs are a complete source of protein that you can enjoy every day. While the medical community once shunned the noble egg, doctors and medical researchers are now on-board with an egg or two a day. If you want to further reduce your calories, limit yourself to one whole egg, and egg whites for the rest. Eggs don't need to be a breakfast staple, either. Hard-boil your eggs, and eat one for a snack or with a salad. Add vegetables and herbs and bake them for dinner for an effortless frittata that's big on flavor and low on calories.

Almonds are full of protein, but they're also an excellent alternative to refined carbohydrates for those trying to lose weight, according to a recent study. Almonds contain numerous vitamins and minerals, essential amino and fatty acids and the so-called "good" fats, helping to reduce bad cholesterol. Chewing vigorously increases the fat-burning abilities of almonds, so grab a handful and chew thoroughly for maximum enjoyment and real results.

Vitamin C
Foods high in vitamin C are often touted for their immune-boosting properties, but vitamin C may play a large role in weight loss as well. Current research points to vitamin C-deficient individuals and their tendency to retain more fat, suggesting that those lacking in this vitamin may be unknowingly sabotaging their weight loss goals. In the same study, zinc, magnesium and vitamin E deficiencies were also at fault, so look for foods with these properties. Spinach is an ideal choice, high in vitamins A, K and C while offering a good amount of iron, vitamin E, calcium, manganese and magnesium. Swap out less-nutritious greens with vitamin-packed options like spinach or kale next time you make your favorite salad to curb hunger cravings.

Dark Chocolate
Incorporating small amounts of dark chocolate into your weight loss meal plan hardly seems right, but it's a tried-and-true weight loss method, promoted by some of the best weight loss programs out there. To begin with, eating sweets produces a calming effect on the mind and body, reducing the secretion of corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF), a hormone related to increased stress levels. A small indulgence can curb stress-induced cravings and give you a much-needed mood-boost for the rest of your day – just be sure that it contains greater than 60% cacao content. Dark chocolate is an ideal choice for satisfying your sweet tooth, high in antioxidants and offering the same good fats found in nuts and healthy oils. While this treat should be eaten sparingly, it still can be a powerful weapon in your weight-loss arsenal, giving you the freedom to indulge without resetting your hard work.

While there are many weight loss programs and quick-fix diet plans out there, the right one for you will stress the importance of moderation, fitness, nutrition, and education – the key tenants of The Biggest Loser Resort's award-winning weight loss program. You don't need to starve yourself to lose weight; in fact, starvation can have the opposite effect, slowing down your metabolism and increasing the likelihood of binge eating. Instead, be conscious of the foods you put in your body, and develop a healthy relationship with what you eat.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Weigh in Day

Week one was a success!!

I have to say that I love weighing once per week! I think I let myself get too concerned with the fluctuations when I weigh every day.

This week, I lost 4.8 lbs.! Yippee! I am super happy with that. My hard work paid off.

I had a 7,537 calorie deficit for the week, so some of that weight must have been water weight—but who cares! I know I can probably expect a smaller loss next week.

Hubby lost a good amount too. I actually lost more weight than him this time. Say what?! I’m sure next week he will leave me in the dust.

We met our goals for the week and are going to keep the same ones next week.

It’s so nice to see the scale move in the right direction.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

I see beauty…

Today at Target I saw a woman who looked like she was anorexic. Nothing but skin and bones. I noticed the pack of diet soda in her cart and I thought to myself, “girl—it’d be ok for you to drink regular”. But it made me realize that we all have our struggles.

If we’re not too fat, we’re too thin. So many people struggle with their weight and it’s not always because they are a little too fluffy. Some people are naturally very skinny and they have just as bad a body image as those of us who have a few too many extra pounds on our bones.

Guess what guys and gals? It takes all kinds of kinds.

Beauty is not about how fat or how thin we are; isn’t what truly matters what’s found in the depths of our hearts?

I see beauty when I see a young person take the initiative to help an elderly person.

I see beauty when a stranger with a smile holds open the door for me.

I see beauty when there is forgiveness, even when it’s not deserved.

I see beauty when no retort is made to rudeness. It breaks the chain.

I see beauty in kindness.

I see beauty in the generosity of those who have little to give but still do.

I see beauty in the gentle arms of love’s embrace.

I see beauty in the simple words of “thank you”.

I see beauty in those who not only bend their knees to pray, but bend their own will simply to preserve peace.

I see beauty in old couples who still hold hands.

I see beauty in commitment, in trust, and in honesty.

I see beauty in putting others first.

This is what real beauty is—and all of these things aren’t a result of DNA, the newest weight loss fad, or fame and fortune.

You are as beautiful as you choose to be.

And folks, this is the kind of drop dead gorgeous I want to be.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Another Good Day

I had another good day today on track.

I had to go into the office today and it happened to be another day where there was a potluck. I packed a healthy lunch and didn’t eat any of the tempting treats- not even the cupcakes and not even the cookies. Victory!

I told myself that I would rather save my calories for enjoying a good meal with my hubby. Or enjoying a cupcake from my favorite cupcakery because they are always worth the calories. But right now, I’m not eating those things.

I have to admit I came home from work hungry without many options for supper. I ended up eating a “breakfast for supper” type meal and it was delicious! I felt like I wanted to eat more, so I am blogging instead and hoping that hunger will pass. I had enough to eat!

As it is, I have enough calories for my nightly popcorn. Yippee! I was afraid I wouldn’t have enough calories left over.

Today, I wore the new dress that I bought last weekend. It always makes me feel better to dress nicely. Although I will be happy when my stomach shrinks some and I’m not so self-conscious of it! Here I am in my new outfit—it’s pink!


So only a few more days until weigh in—I hope to see some good results after this hard work!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

A Hungry Day

Today was my first “hungry” day.

I woke up hungry, so I started out with a bigger than usual breakfast which included protein. It was delicious, but at 500 calories it was more calories than I usually eat at breakfast—although not out of control or anything.

I thought that would hold me over but I was hungry by break time. I ate a serving of turkey jerky and that helped hold me over until lunch time.

For lunch, I ate a balanced meal with protein and veggies in a wrap. It was flavorful and really hit the spot, but it wasn’t long until I was hungry again.

For my snack, I ate some Bohemian plums. That’s what my husband’s family calls them—I’m really not sure what the official name is. But the plums are small, just a little larger than a grape. They are SO good.

But by supper time, I was getting to that dangerously hungry place. After being hungry all day, it was the end of the work day, and I was running low on calories. Having my evening bowl of popcorn keeps me sane while reducing my calories, so I knew that unless I could figure something low-calorie out for supper, I was going to be at a dangerous place and go over my calories. I also felt like I could eat anything.

And I came up with the most delicious and filling supper for about 200 calories! I sautéed zucchini with a little olive oil and garlic and topped it with marinara sauce and parmesan cheese. It was flavorful and satisfying. I will definitely make that again!

And I still have calories left—Yay!

So I would say today was another good day—but it was dangerously on the edge. It was an accomplishment to stay on track today!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Still Going Strong

Hello everyone! It is so nice to hear from you in the comments again. Smile

Day 2 and Day 3 went well!

On Day 2, I was within my calorie guideline. Yippee! Hubby and I also went for a 30 minute walk. For once, I was the one pushing him to get out there and get active, and then once we were out there I griped and complained the entire way. lol But we got it done! And check out the pretty picture I took for you—a bee in motion!


You’re welcome. Winking smile

Day 3 went well. I have stayed within my calorie guidelines and have enough left for a snack this evening. I am still in a good mindset—so that helps a lot! This weekend, I stocked up on some healthy foods and new snacks—that keeps things interesting.

I am not going to weigh until Saturday morning, which will leave me in anticipation but also inspire me to stay on track. I will be excited to see how I do!

Until tomorrow!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Day One: Complete

The first day of our new endeavor went very well! We both stuck to our calorie goal.

I am feeling much better today. The headache has subsided for the most part—just a little dull ache left, and I’m hoping the headache will be gone for good. I am also feeling less of the “bloat” feeling this morning, and that does wonders for my mood! All of you women know how feeling a little bloated can make you feel horrible!

Yesterday was the perfect de-stressor for me. I really needed it. Hubby knew it too…so he suggested we have a date day and take a little road trip. <3

We ate out at Hu Hot for lunch—I love that you can go to their website and calculate your calories before you eat! We both figured what we would eat and then stuck to it. And you can make a healthy meal out of it too—just beware of the sauces.

And then I had a little retail therapy. If you are in the need of such therapy, this is the time of year to do it! I actually went to Lane Bryant because I often have a lot of luck finding cute skirts there, and I can wear the 14/16 size. And I was not disappointed. I bought a dress, two skirts, two tops, and a scarf (which was only $4). All of the items were on clearance and then there was a promotion for an additional 60% off the clearance price. Nice!

And then I made the mistake of going in a kitchen store—you know the ones with all of the fun gizmos and gadgets. I was looking for a wok and I found one, only to get it home and realize it can’t go in the dishwasher….I try not to buy anything that can’t. lol

But omw, they had K-Cups on clearance. I came out of there with a total of 80 K-Cups. I told you I meant business. And for a steal too! I always vow that I’m not going to buy any more K-Cups and I just can’t keep that promise when I see a good deal. Am I alone in this?! lol I love my coffee—so it never goes to waste. 

During our day trip, I Googled walking trails in the area and we found a 1.6 mile loop around a lake. It was kind of “industrial” looking, so I was a little leery of it but it turned out to be pretty nice! It also took us exactly 30 minutes, which meets one of our exercise goals. I took a few pics to share.




I am happy about Day 1 and I know Day 2 will go just as well. I am glad that we started yesterday on a Saturday when I could be more relaxed. Hopefully I can handle the stress of Monday without going off track. I will deal with Monday’s troubles when Monday arrives, I suppose.

Have a great day!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Today is Day 1

I am excited to begin another leg of my journey! There is hope.

I am on day three of headaches—always on the same side of my head/face. It will disappear for a brief time and then comes back. I am hoping eating nutritious foods will help with that but I am under a great deal of stress right now and I’m not sure which is the culprit, if not both.

Hubby is joining me again this time and that is a huge motivator for me.

This morning, we weighed and then I calculated how many calories each of us can eat to lost 2 lbs. per week. We are both tracking with the My Fitness Pal app—it helps to see him adding what he eats to remind me that I need to do the same.

We set some goals for Week 1.

  1. Exercise at least 3 times per week for a minimum of 30 minutes (starting out with easily obtainable goals)
  2. Drink 8 cups of water daily
  3. Eat at least 5 servings of fruits/veggies daily
  4. And a personal one for me—no sweets unless they meet the guidelines which I have set for myself (low calorie type things to satisfy the sweet tooth in moderation). This method has always worked well for me and lately I have backtracked on the rules I usually hold to.

I am also going to try to update you all here on my blog a little more regularly.

So here we go!

I can do this!

We can do this!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Rock Bottom

Today, I feel like I’ve hit rock bottom. The added weight of poor health decisions on my shoulders as I crash into the depths of obesity is crushing and horrifying. It’s a horrible feeling, but it’s also the kind of place one needs to reach before real change can happen.

I recently blogged about realizing that I have started to maintain, finally, after continued weight gain—and I continue in that maintenance. But in the process of getting to the point of maintaining again, I put on some weight. Not everything, but I did gain a good chunk, about 30 lbs., back.

I feel the extra weight in each step I take and even every time I choose to remain sedentary instead of going for a walk. Shopping isn’t very much fun any more- I’m on the brink to having to shop in the plus sizes—but still able to shop in the misses. I’m on the edge in so many ways.

But all of that is not really what make me feel like I’ve hit rock bottom.

I’ve had a horrible headache all day long. Nothing cures it. After years of no terrible headaches, I’ve begun to get them again. I’ve had two migraines since the beginning of the year. Today’s headache isn’t quite a migraine, but it’s painful. And I can’t help but think that maybe occasional poor eating choices and lifestyle choices are causing them. If anything is going to make me change, it is the sick feeling of obesity. The aches, the pains, the fatigue. I HATE that. I hate how I am ruining my life! OBESITY is NOT ruining my life—I AM.

My biggest problem is my inability to deal with stress in a healthy way. I have a hard time leaving my worries at work at the end of the day. Somehow, I think that I need to be perfect at everything. I constantly worry that I haven’t done the right thing, said the wrong thing, should have said something, shouldn’t have said something, or that I’m not meeting everyone’s expectations. I worry that I’m not making everyone happy. It is so stressful trying to please everyone. And yet I try.

My husband constantly tell me that I have a right to say and think whatever I want to. My opinion is no less important than the next guy’s. I don’t need to worry so much about just being myself. It really is ok. Why do I struggle with that so much?

I eat when I am stressed out. Plain and simple- I don’t know if I overeat for any other reason lately, to tell you the truth. It’s always stress. And I don’t mean just the kind of stress you have when you have a big test. I’m talking about the overwhelming feeling of having to be amongst a large group of people, of having been (or having perceived to have been) looked at sideways, or to having to go outside of my comfort zone (there are a hundred different ways this can happen). I stress and I stress and I stress. This probably causes headaches, I know it causes the incredible tension in my neck and shoulders, and it often causes other symptoms.

I know I’ve told you all of this a million times. And I’m saying it again. But this time, I’m about to embark on the next leg of my journey. I am ready again.

I am going to make some plans by this weekend and get started. Concrete plans. 

I don’t want you to think I’m horribly depressed—because I’m not at all actually. I mostly feel overwhelmed. I feel very normal in my weight struggles—I know I’m not the only one who has these issues. But I hope to be able to share with you one day that I have overcome them. Because I know it’s possible. I thought I had overcome these demons once—but I hadn’t.

I feel like I’m beginning a new chapter in my life in many, many ways. Maybe a post on that at a later date. But I just wanted to let you all know that I am about to set sail once again.

This journey is tough and it has no end. So while I feel hopeless now, I like to think that it’s just a stepping stone. There are lessons learned the hard way. But I am not giving up. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


I have been so wrapped up in the fact that I haven't been losing weight that I didn't take the time to realize that I have STOPPED GAINING.

That is an accomplishment. 

Since the end of May, my weight has fluctuated within 5 lbs. I would call that maintenance, which is much better than gaining! The goal is to lose weight, but as long as I'm not gaining... I have to give myself credit for that! 

I quit my second job at the end of May and it seems that ever since then I have been happier in general. I know that makes a big difference in the weight department. I also think I was depressed over the winter for a variety of reasons, but I've been doing a lot better. Do I have stressful days? Sad moments? Of course, but not like I did this past winter. The nice weather helps a lot, but so does making changes in your life.

I went to the doctor today and she was very happy with my numbers and that gave me a boost of motivation to be healthy. By the next time I go to see her, I'd like to lose a few lbs. that's 6 months from now and I'm pretty sure I could do that.


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