Time For Changes

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Monday!  It is time for some major changes in my life.  I mean weight loss changes, and improving my health. I am so over the size that I am, so I have to change.

I have to change what and how much I eat, and I have to change my exercise or lack thereof.  Time to eat better, time to exercise, and time to stop making excuses.

In recent pictures of myself, I don’t like how I look. “Where did that double chin come from?” I asked myself.  And, “how did I get to be this size?” Or “Is it my clothes that make me look fat?” Sadly no, it’s not the clothes.  So, it is the time I realized that and moved on with weight loss 2.0.

I can no longer deny that something needs to be done.  But isn’t it funny that we make excuses to ourselves until we are truly ready to make the changes that are necessary in our lives?  I have been making them for a while.  In order to get better, I have to stop that. Starting today.

Several times in my life I have had to work hard to lose weight.  I am not a person who can do it easily and that in itself is frustrating.  I am on several medications for health issues and would like to stop taking those. My doctor has told me that losing weight will help. He also said that exercise is important, but it boils down to what you put in your mouth.

I have a great appetite and love to eat.  Sometimes I just eat entirely too much food.  My cousin gave me a great idea of using smaller plates and that if the food isn’t in the house, it won’t be a temptation.  She is right.

Before getting pregnant with Ian, I was very successful with losing weight and then maintained it for quite a while.  I was careful with my salt intake and exercised every day.  Knowing that I have had success in the past is very helpful and something I will pat myself on the back about.  And I can draw on that for strength.

My cousin also said it is in your mind.  If I determine and decide to do this, I can.  I have to take care of myself and realize that my health is important.  So, I will schedule exercise time on my calendar and plan the meals carefully. Even though these seem like little things, they are big and very important to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.  That is the key – not to think of this as a diet but my new lifestyle.

Here is an interesting quote on losing weight: Elizabeth Berg said, “Nothing tastes as good as being thin feels.”  I am not quite there since I truly love food.  And, I still want to have some treats so I am not feeling deprived.  I just have to figure out healthier ways to eat those favorite items.  And, each day, I need to be active and exercise.

I am fortunate that my hubby and other family members love me no matter what size I am.  And, my son thinks I am beautiful, which means the world to me.  And, they all want me to be healthy, so here’s to the journey.  I will keep you posted on how things are going.

Any ideas or words of encouragement would be greatly appreciated!  And, if you are on this journey, I’d love to hear from you so I can support you too. After all, we are in this together!

Hi and Happy Monday!

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Monday!  Today is also President’s Day, which is a Federal holiday.  So banks are closed and no mail will be delivered.  Some school systems are out today, not ours.  Ian went today and was ready for a day of learning.

On Friday, school started two hours late.  This was a day after a snow day.  We took this picture on the snow day.  A selfie of Ian and Mommy.  On Friday, Ian traded Valentine’s cards with his classmates, teachers, and teaching assistant.  It was great that the entire class participated.  Ian wrote the cards by himself and did a great job with them.

That night, we had dinner at my parents that night and had a fun time.  It was great to spend Valentine’s Day with them.  My hubby game me some lovely roses that are multi-colored and some fabulous chocolate.

The rest of the weekend was super lazy!  It was so nice.  We stayed home and in our pjs or sweats all of Saturday and Sunday.  We watched some of our favorite shows, made Valentine’s Day cookies, and enjoyed a relaxing time.  It was great and so rare to come by these days.  On Saturday morning, I asked Ian what he wanted to do.  “I want to stay home and play Mommy,” was his reply.  I told him that was fine.

Sunday morning we were planning to go to church but then learned it was cancelled since even more snow had come in Saturday night. That was unexpected. The weather people had predicted snow flurries, but we got another 2 inches of snow.  Then by the afternoon, it all melted since the temperature was warm and the sun out most of the day.  Then this week it is supposed to be in the 60s.  Crazy weather, that’s for sure.

I spend part of the weekend reading, which I always enjoy.  Our books are due in another week back to the library, so I have got to get reading.  What I need to do is read some as I ride my stationary bike.  Speaking of exercise, I saw some photos of myself at my grandmother’s recent birthday party and did not like the way I look at all.

I majorly need to lose some weight!  I have too large an appetite and get too little exercise.  And, I eat when stressed or worried about things.  I really need to get a handle on this.  I would like to be back to a decent size by the summer and really down by my birthday.  However, I know it will take a while since it took a while to gain it.

Nothing like a bad photo to shove you into reality of what needs to change.  Right?!  I have been on this weight loss journey before and know what to do.  I just have to get up and do it.  So starting tomorrow, I am going to start exercising for 30 minutes for 5 or 6 days a week and then work my up to 45 minutes and an hour.  I am also going to work on less food and more healthy choices.  I bought a lot of fruits and veggies at the store today, so that should help.

Wish me luck!  I will need it to stay with it.  I realize that it has to be part of my lifestyle and not just a diet or for a short time.  I have some family and friends who have had amazing success and I hope to join them and once and for all, take the weight off and keep it off.

Take care and have a great Monday!

Weight Loss Update – 5 Pounds Lost!

scaleHi and Happy Wednesday!

Hope you are having a great week.  Mine has been good so far.

When I weighed myself most recently, I had lost 5 pounds!  Yeah!  I still have a long way to go but I am getting there!

I guess it’s the little steps that make the most difference.  And, I have been making them.  I am eating better and making more sensible choices, and have been walking more.

Still there are many pounds to go and many miles to walk or bike.  I won’t let myself get overwhelmed by it — or it would be an uphill battle.

I have lost weight before and know I can do it again.  Here I am pictured at a really good weight 6 years ago with my nephew Aiden. We were at the San Diego airport for a beach vacation.

Vacation 2006 070This was taken before I got pregnant with Ian.  I gained quite a bit of weight during my pregnancy.  Then about a year ago, I gained some more and realized I weighed more than when Ian was born.   That was quite depressing to discover. ARG!!

The size in this picture wasn’t the smallest that I have been but I felt good, was comfortable in my skin and my clothes.  And, my blood pressure was under control.

Now I keep photos like this and others as motivation and inspiration to stay on the journey.

My downfall continues to be too little exercise and stress eating.  Right now, I am super busy and life is quite stressful.  At night, I eat for comfort and that isn’t good.  I don’t do this every night, but it’s enough to make a problem for me.

I am working to change this and find a way to exercise, which always helps me with stress.  I also try to have time to relax and do a few activities that I really love — like reading, word finds, taking photos, writing, walking around the neighborhood, shopping at discount stores and book stores, listening to music and/or dancing and singing, and spending time with Ian and Kirk and friends and family.

In a few months, there will be some changes so hopefully all of this will be easier for me.

I’d love to hear from friends, family, and followers who are also on a weight loss journey or some other journey.  It is always helpful to have others in your corner.

During my journey, I have been learning a lot about myself and what my triggers are.  That has been helpful in making some lasting changes.

I wonder if I will lose more weight this week.  I also wonder what new things I will learn that will help me.  I look forward to the adventure.

Changes Week 1

scaleHi to all of you!  Hope you are enjoying this spring!

If you are in the path of the snow or thunderstorms and other crazy weather, may you be safe!!  This afternoon and evening, we are supposed to get some heavy rain.  I just hope and pray that is all we get.

I wanted to write about a few of the changes that I have started this week in my weight loss quest.  Care to join me?

Last weekend, Kirk, Ian, and I went on a long walk around the neighborhood and that was fun.  I am trying to work in more exercise so that is a start.  Then over the last few days, I have taken short walks and have tried to be more active.

Also as I mentioned in yesterday’s post about cutting my rings, I am working on cutting out late night snacks that aren’t healthy.  Yesterday evening, I had a big bowl of strawberries and a small scoop of light vanilla ice cream.  It was delicious and low on points!  The strawberries were no points at all!!

When I was a teenager I was allergic to chocolate so this was my favorite dessert treat.  It was great to have it last night.  I stayed on track and yet had some comfort food!

Speaking of points, I have started tracking my food again on Weight Watchers Online.  I love that there are so many fruits and veggies that are no points.  So I can eat salads either as their own meal or supplement them with something I really want.

As the commercials say, you can eat everything, just have to be careful about the portion size.  This is something that I can do!!  And, I am ready to do it!!  It is time for my lifestyle change.

Tonight I have a date with my son.  We are going to make dinner together — pigs in a blanket which he loves to help with, broccoli, and mashed potatoes.  And, we will watch some episodes of Busytown Mysteries.  Sounds like fun, don’t you think?

Since I have planned and tracked my day, I can enjoy this meal with him without stressing about it!  Isn’t that cool?  I sure think so.

I know that all weeks won’t be easy but taking the time to think about my food and exercising will make a difference.  These are things I haven’t been doing for a while.

I wonder what new low-point food I will find this weekend.  I look forward to finding out.

With Spring Comes Change

springWith spring, comes new life and changes for me as well.

I have pain in my lower back, am overweight and stressed out and am getting no exercise or activity.  I realize that it is time for some major changes.

My diet needs to change, I need to exercise each day for both my heart and to lose weight, and I need to get away from the stressors and stressful people in my life.

I wanted to put this out there so I would in fact make these changes.

I appreciate your comments, suggestions, and support.   Who is with me?

I will keep you posted through blogs and the 90 Days of Exercise Page.

I wonder if I can truly make these changes and have them stick this time.  I am going to do my best to do just that!!

Time to Lose, Etc.

Time to Lose Week 8

Yet another week has come and gone with the weight loss adventure.

The exercising didn’t go exactly as I had planned, but there is good news. I lost 2 pounds because of better food choices.  YEAH!  It truly is a combination of the two but quite a bit from healthy foods.

In each meal, I am eating either fruits or veggies and am having protein as well. That seems to be making a good difference.  I still, however, have a major appetite and am not sure when that will change.  Hopefully soon, so I am trying to fill up on healthier options – plums, pears, oranges, green salad, corn on the cob, etc.

This morning I tried on a dress that I haven’t worn in a while.  It seems to fit better than it has in recent months.  My shape seems to be improving and that is really nice.

I have to remember that weight loss isn’t all about the scale — but also about how clothes fit and how you feel.  These items are improving and I am very thankful.

There are still plenty of items to work on but each week it’s getting easier!  I still like the occasional really good hamburger with for example, Cali Cobb toppings (blue cheese, bacon, and avocado) and thin-cut fries.  This was a recent meal I enjoyed at a restaurant and it was delicious and the best hamburger I’ve had in ages.

And, I now like dark chocolate which is supposed to be better for you.  My favorite is Ghirardelli dark with mint.  I have learned that when I do want a splurge, it is going to be something I really like and will really enjoy the taste of.  I am not wasting my calories anymore on a so-so tasting item.

Here is to another week that more will be lost and more will be learned. Cheers!!

Etc.

**I have to say how glad I am that it is Friday.  It will be a busy weekend, but I still enjoy the different routine to a Saturday and a Sunday than the other 5 days of the week. Being able to sleep in a little bit on Saturday morning is a treat, as well as a special breakfast or event for the day. And going to church is the highlight for Sunday as well as lunch with the family and then a lazy afternoon.

*And, I have to say Happy Birthday to Dr. Seuss.  He is one of the best children’s authors ever.  I have liked his books for many years. And, now I am so thankful that Ian is enjoying them too.  My grandmother recently gave him “The Foot Book.” Last night as he was going to bed, he quoted from this book.

I have to say that is the mark of a great book when a 4-year-old remembers the lines from it a week after it’s been read to him!!  I hope to write a children’s book one day and can only hope to aspire to a little of the genius of Dr. Seuss.

Hope you have a great week – no matter what you are doing!  I wonder if we can make the most of it and enjoy each and every day! Hope you will!

Time to Lose and Other Things

Time to Lose Week 7

Hi!  I am a day late in writing for week 7 of the weight loss quest. No loss or gain this week. Staying the same is something I am happy for this week.

I missed not writing last week, but the time got away from me. And, then we were busy with a lot of items yesterday.  Hope you have been well.

I have really appreciated all of the feedback and support I have been getting on this journey! It helps keep me motivated.

Eating the better food choices is still going well — although I occasionally like a treat that I shouldn’t probably be eating. I try to limit those items to just once a week.  I guess it’s all a matter of balance, isn’t it.  The item that I continue to struggle with is finding the time for exercise. I am over being so lazy but can’t seem to get out of my rut.  Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

This time of year is a lot of time spent inside and sitting. I need to move and get out more.  My entire family seems to do better when we do.  So, this next week, I am going to strive to make a point of exercising each day.  Even if it’s just 15 minutes of walking or dancing, that is still better than nothing.  I know that I need to be doing at 45 minutes of cardio each day and am working back to that again.

Other Things 

I had to share a few milestones for my four-year old son in the last two days.  Yesterday he woke up talking about dinosaurs and how much he wanted to learn about them.  He then added that he wants to learn to read.  How exciting is that? I love that he wants to learn!!

Today, he asked me to first write and then sound out Pre-si-dents’ Day. He then sounded it out.  I told him, you are reading, and he grinned from ear to ear. I think we have a breakthrough.

He then asked me what sound F makes.  He so wants to learn and is ready to take off!  YEAH IAN!!!!  Mommy is so proud of you.

Isn’t it great how children are so excited when they learn something new and can understand it?  He was so proud of himself, and rightly so.  I am going to try to have that same excitement about the items that I am learning on my journey!

I wonder if in this next week we can be excited about learning something new each day?  I am going to try to continue to encourage Ian as well.

God’s blessings to you on this first day of Lent!

Time to Lose Week 4

Hello and hope you are having a great January 31. Can you believe that it is already the last day of the first month of a new year? I can’t.  This month seems to have flown by.

The weight loss journey continues.  It is hard to believe it that I have been at this a month already.  Seems like I am getting nowhere fast.  But then again I have had some very bad habits and routines for a long, long time.

I did make a breakthrough just yesterday that I have to share with you. I had some blood work done at the doctor and before that a fast of 12 hours was required.  That was fine since the night before the fasting time, I ate 94% fat-free kettle corn for my snack with some ice-cold water.  Yummy and filling.

After the trip to the doctor, I had an errand to run and was also hungry. I had a hard time deciding what I wanted to eat. I went to one of my old favorite fast food restaurants, walked in, and then realized, I really don’t want this. The thought of that greasy food almost made me ill. So I left.  And, it’s a good thing — they were so busy, a long line inside and cars waiting in the drive-thru — all the way around the building.

I came back to the house and ate a protein bar, part of a banana, cheese, water, and coffee with cream.  That was much more satisfying than my other option would have been. I have to say that was a real win for me in my day-to-day walk with the correct food options. I couldn’t help but say, yeah me! (This is something that I think we should be doing — it’s important to celebrate your victories.)

The rest of the week has had good times and bad times but the weight has remained the same.  And I must say that although the scale didn’t change, I am relieved and pleased that it didn’t go up.

For people who don’t have a struggle with weight loss, you may wonder, why isn’t it just an easy change to choose the healthy food? Some days it is easy and other days it isn’t. I am trying to work through the hard days and learn each week a lesson that will help me continue to meet my goals.  I truly want my health to improve so I must do this – hard as it may be sometimes.

I find that the more healthy choices I am making, the more healthy choices I want to continue to make.  You know what I mean?  It seems the body seems to start craving the good deep green lettuce, the crunchy carrot, the whole grain pasta with grilled chicken, and other tasty and healthy foods.

The other challenge continues to be exercise.  I have been doing more walking and am enjoying being outside – especially with this unseasonably warmer winter that we are having. Just some days, it seems to end up at the end of the list of things that must be done. You know what I mean?

In years past, I have been very active and regularly worked out.  That was before becoming a mother and having more demands on my time. I just am realizing more and more that I just have to schedule it and then do it!

I hope and pray that I can work more exercise into each day this coming week. I wonder what new lessons I will learn. I am sure there will be something.

Time to Lose Week 3

Hello and Happy Tuesday!

I am on week 3 of the weight loss program.  Last week, I didn’t have a chance to write a posting about my progress.  I didn’t gain or lose so I suppose I was continuing to make some good decisions.

This week I have gained 1.5 pounds.  I seem to be going in the opposite direction. That has made me stop and think about what I am doing wrong, or not doing.

As I wrote in my last posting, this past week has been pretty stressful! And I noticed something, I tend to eat comfort food and eat it late when I am stressed. Can anyone else relate to that?

That is something at least – realizing the triggers for eating the bad food choices. I still have much work to do but I feel that is a good step.

Another problem, since things were so crazy this week, there was little time to exercise.  I have come to realize that this must be scheduled in my day in order for me to do it and then turn it into a habit.

I will spend this week continuing to improve my habits and my routine. I want to continue to stay aware of what I am eating and my exercise.  All I can do is try each day and if I stick with the lifestyle change, I will lose.

I wonder if I can handle my stress better this week — with exercise instead of the old standby munchies. I am going to try each day and see what happens.  I just have to realize that some weeks will be harder than others and that’s okay. True and lasting change takes time.

Time To Lose Week 1

Hi and hope you have had a great week. My week has been pretty good and I managed to lose 2 pounds!!!  I am have been working to re-establish better habits.

I went grocery shopping this week and bought fresh fruits, veggies, whole grain and organic foods, and healthier treats. The food cost more than I have been spending recently. And, that will take some adjustment to the mindset and the pocketbook. But, the food also is more tasty and more colorful. Who would have thought?

For example, I made salmon, rice, and broccoli and it tasted really good. I will be doing that again! And, I also bought a cheese pizza and then added fresh veggies (mushrooms, and red, yellow, and green peppers) as well as pepperoni and baked it and it was great. Two slices with a salad made a satisfying dinner.

I have talked to several people who you pay now or later so I guess I am ready to pay now. I’d rather do that than have to pay in extra doctor bills or medication because of bad health.

One day I ate a little too much fiber and my stomach objected but other than that, the changes have been fine. I ate prunes which are labeled as dried plums. Is that supposed to make you think it’s not a prune?

When I was growing up, I remember each morning my grandfather used to eat a soft-boiled egg over whole wheat toast and a bowl of prunes. He understood healthy eating and lived into his mid-80s. I wasn’t crazy about prunes back then, but this week they tasted pretty good and I ate them with cheese for a snack. Just have to be careful not to overdo it right now.

As far as exercise, I have done that every other day. Still working on this but have made some really good progress. I went on a very long walk around our neighborhood on Friday and that was fun. The weather was warm and it was sunny and not a cloud in the sky. An amazing treat for January, that’s for sure. The other times I did exercise inside on a stationary bike.

I also bought a CD of music that I thought would inspire me to do some dancing. I love to dance and need to build up my stamina again.  The CD is “The Ultimate Bee Gees.” They are one of my favorite groups and make wonderful music. When I hear it, I do want to get up in dance, so why not?

Did you know that you can do the Electric Slide dance to at least four of their songs? Stayin’ Alive, Night Fever, Jive Talkin’, and You Should Be Dancing have the same beat so it works well. I really like the Electric Side song and hope to find a recording of it one of these days. I’d love to dance to that each day as well.

As I mentioned in the first paragraph, I weighed myself this morning and was pleasantly surprised that I’ve lost 2 pounds this week. That is a nice start and if I can do that or stay the same each week, I will be happy — just a pound or two a week will get me to my goal.

I know that these changes take time and need to be a new way of life. There is no such thing as a I quick fix with true and successful weight loss. It takes time and effort and I am ready for this journey.

I wonder if I can reach my goals again in the upcoming week. I will certainly try. However, as I learned in Weight Watchers, I can’t beat myself up if I mess up. I just have to get back to it. And, if you are trying to lose weight, I hope that you can hang in there and take it one day at a time like I am doing!