Wednesday, July 31, 2013


I was so proud of myself.  I held a full plank for 90 seconds this afternoon.  Then, I went to yoga class.  And, I parked all the way at the far end of the parking lot.  I thought I was doing pretty well.  Then, I got a text message from my trainer.  Apparently, yoga doesn't count as cardio.  So, tomorrow I'll be doing cardio.  And the DVD I was planning on doing.  It might kill me.  Then again, I really need to see some movement on the scale!

For gratitude, I am really thankful that she cares enough to check in, and make sure I am following my program.  And making suggestions to make it better.  So, even though it means more work, I really am grateful.

Food:  Perfect
Exercise:  Yoga and the plank
Gratitude:  Friends and trainers who care about me and my program.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Loving My Monday Evening Routine

This was a really rough day.  The scale was mean to me.  Michael started out really grumpy.  I was the only one on my team working today.  Our air conditioner broke.  Steve was unhappy.  It just seemed like the world was piling on.  A little voice in the back of my head said that I was allowed to feel sorry for myself and skip my workout.  Not an option.  So, bad day or not, off to the gym I went.

The muscle challenge class was intense, challenging, and rewarding.  It was hard, really, really hard, but I love when I can push my body and feel it respond.  I am definitely getting stronger.  My balance is better.  I was able to hold a forearm plank for a full minute.  It just made me so happy to be able to do things I haven't been able to do before.

Then, yoga started.  I know it's going to be a good night when we start on the floor.  It gives me a chance to catch my breath after the first class, and really focus for the second.  She did some stretches that really open the hips and stretch the quad.  Those are my absolute favorite.  Of course, it was a hard class, and there were poses that I couldn't do.  But, I am feeling more confident, and more flexible.

The most important thing is that when I left the gym I was happy.  I felt relaxed.  It seemed like every drop of sweat washed away my stress.  So, as hard as the evening was, it was a gift as well.  So, thank you Kathie for a great evening!

Weight:  299
Diet:  Great
Exercise:  Muscle Challenge & Yoga
Gratitude:  Stress Relief from Exercise

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Update for the last few days

Sorry I've been MIA for a few days.  I went away for the weekend and just didn't have time or energy to post to the blog.  But, I'll give you a quick summary of the last several days.

Friday:  I went to my Friday night yoga class.  I reallylove this class.  It's challenging, but relaxing.  For example, we're working on balancing half moon pose.  It's really, really hard.  But, each week I feel like I do a little bit better, and my legs get a little bit stronger.  And, I always leave happy.  There are few classes that are challenging, and make me happy.  This class really is a reward for making it through the week!

Saturday:  I had intended to take Michael swimming when we got to my parent's place.  But, he was having a rough day, and it just didn't happen.  Plus, it started to rain, and I decided to just take the day off.  Not the greatest decision in the world, but it worked.

Today:  I made up for yesterday.  This morning, I went for a walk that was 4.18 miles.  And, it took me about 90 minutes to do the walk.  The good news is that it wasn't nearly as hot as the 5K, and I did a lot better.  The bad news is that I was still exhausted and sore when I finished.  I will have to keep practicing until long walks are easy!

Tomorrow is the start of a new week, and I am looking forward to it.  Hopefully, I'll be better about keeping up the blog this week.  If not, send me a note and keep me honest!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Total Exhaustion = Inner Calm

I had another personal training session at the house this afternoon.  Before she even got here, she had me do 30 minutes of intervals on the elliptical.  Then, things really got fun.  I am not sure I will be able to move tomorrow.  And that's after we stretched everything we worked!

What I love about personal training is that she knows just how far to push to get my absolute best performance, but never pushes beyond my ability.  Way, way beyond my comfort zone, but never my ability.  Today we did ab work on the ball, lots of leg work, lat pull downs, chest presses, chest flys, calf raises.. I can't even remember it all.  But, what I do know is that I  worked every muscle I own.  And then some.

The rest of the day was fairly uneventful.  When Michael got home from school, I took him in the chamber, and then I took him to the library.  I had some books to return, and he's really good about limiting the elevator rides.  So, we both won.  Some days are really good days, even if you finish exhausted.

The other thing I noticed was that I was pretty depressed this morning.  I had been hoping for faster results from the diet changes, and they just haven't been coming.  And, with Steve out of town, I get lonely.  But, after the workout, even though I was totally exhausted, I felt much more calm, less stressed, and less depressed.   I guess it's true - exercise is great therapy!

But, what I am thankful today is just Michael.  No matter what kind of day I'm having, his smile, or a hug can make all the stress melt away.  At least for a few minutes.  And, he's still small enough that if I ask for a cuddle, I get one.  Now, they are much shorter than they used to be, but they still melt my heart, and they still make everything better.  Thank you Michael!

Diet:  Great
Exercise:  30 minutes on the elliptical, Hour of Personal Training
Gratitude:  Michael

Monday, July 22, 2013

What a crazy up and down day

Today started out pretty good.  Michael had a better morning, and got off to school OK.  But then I had a denist appointment.  My crown had a hole in it and needed to be replaced.  I didn't expect him to get out the drill and cut it out!  It seemed like he was drilling for hours.  Then, he had to 'shape' what was left of the tooth underneath.  Again, it seemed like hours.  By he time I got to leave the dentist's office I was completely traumatized.  Driving away, I told myself I could skip my workouts tonight and just feel sorry for myself.

But, I knew that was a lie.  I went to both my classes tonight, and actually did really well.  I was more tired than I realized, but I still got in two great workouts.  I have a feeling I will definitely be feeling my arms and legs tomorrow.

Today I am grateful that I was actually able to get to my classes.  Steve is out of town for a couple days, but Dan stepped up and made sure I could get out to the gym.  I really appreciated that.  Sometimes it really is great having three adults in the house!

The only bad thing is when I stepped on the scale this morning, I was up a pound.  I'm not letting it stress me out though.  I have been having some water retention issues, and I know that's all it is. Next week's number will be better.

Weight:  297.5
Food:  On Track
Exercise:  1 Hour Muscle Challenge, 1 Hour Yoga
Gratitude:  Getting to the Gym

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Long, horrible day

Short and sweet.  As great of a day as yesterday was, today was pretty horrible.  I did a yoga video for exercise, and hoping it would calm me down.  It didn't work.  Tomorrow is another day.

Food:  Everything on plan, probably too much
Exercise:  1 hour yoga DVD
Gratitude:  I made it through the day.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

I'm so happy!!!!

A little while ago Steve had gotten me some Jillian Michaels DVDs.  One of them is a beginner front body workout, and another is the beginner back body workout.  I did the back body workout this afternoon.  It was intense, but really, really doable.  I am so excited.  I think I finally have a plan to get strength workouts in three times a week.  I'll still go to my Monday double class, and then on Wednesdays I'll do the front workout, and Saturday the back workout.  It's a real plan, and I'm happy.

Of course, Steve wanted to know what I'll do about personal training.  If we can afford it, I'd still like to do the every other week sessions.  It's such an amazing workout, a DVD could never come close.  But now, I feel so much better that I have a plan for the rest of the time.  I didn't realize how much this was bothering me, until I found a solution I liked.

This all leads in to my gratitude of the day. Hands down, I am so thankful that Steve is so supportive of this journey.  He has never once complained about me going to the gym, or given me a hard time about picking up things I let slide.  He has been more supportive than I could ever hope for.  And now, with finding these DVDs for me, he gets extra bonus husband points.  Now, I'm not saying he's perfect, but I really appreciate everything he does to make sure I have every chance of being successful on this journey.  How could I ask for more?

Food:  Great, if anything a little bit low
Exercise:  JM Back Body DVD
Gratitude:  Steve!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Finally Friday!

I love Friday.  It has to be my favorite day of the week.  After a long week or work and stress, there is just nothing like the feeling I get after unwinding at yoga.  It's intense, but relaxing at the same time.  To be honest, the Friday class is not as demanding as the other classes, but in some ways I get more out of it.  I never have to rest in this class, so I get to participate 100%.  So for me, it's better.  And, by the time final relaxation is over, I've worked hard, and released a lot of tension.  I can't think of a better way to end the week.

Today, I am grateful everything I have.  My Aunt is organizing a shoebox campaign, and our family is donating a couple boxes for those who have less than us.  When you realize how such a small contribution from our family can make a difference for another person, or family, then you realize how truly blessed you are.  We certainly aren't wealthy, but we have a roof over our head, clothes on our backs, and a lot of things we do take for granted.  And, the feeling you get from doing something to help others can't be beat.  So, lots to be grateful for today!

Diet: 100% on track
Exercise:  1 Hour Yoga
Gratitude:  For everything we have, and having the ability to share.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Low Key Thursday

I decided to keep things low key again today.  I did half an hour of easy intervals on the elliptical this afternoon.  It actually felt good to move my legs, and the intervals made me feel stronger.  So, I think it was a good plan.

I'm beginning to think that I do really well with very low carbs.  When I add too many in, even if they are healthy, things tend to fall apart.  So, I need to remember to keep focused on the low carb, ketogenic diet.  And, I think my body likes it.  I'm starting to feel a little more energetic, and I am sleeping well again.  This can definitely be a good thing.

Today, I am grateful for friends and family.  When I realize that others don't have the same level of support I do, I feel so sad for them.  Everyone should have people in their lives who love them and want what's best for them.  I am lucky to have that in spades.  So for that, I am truly, truly grateful.

Diet:  Great
Exercise:  30 minutes intervals on the elliptical
Gratitude:  Friends and Family

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Quiet Day, Then Yoga

I decided not to do a personal training session today because my legs were still really, really sore from Sunday.  I think I strained my hamstring, or something similar.  So, a strenuous workout wasn't in the cards. 

But, yoga was perfect.  She did a flow with planks, side planks, and cobras.  It was definitely intense, and I'm sure I'll be feeling it in the morning.  Wow.  But, the bad news is that halfway through the workout, my knee started giving out. I was able to complete the workout, but I couldn't put full weight on the one knee. 

When I got home, I took an ibuprofin and put some ice on it.  I'm sure it will be better tomorrow, but I don't like this.  I am able to keep exercising, and I will.  I just need to make sure it's gentle and let my legs heal.  Frustrating!

But, there are plenty of things to be grateful for today.  The main one is that Michael is back to having a string of perfect days at school.  Whenever he is doing well, my mood improves and it seems like I can handle anything.  So, I am hoping this streak lasts for a while.

As far as my diet, I'm doing really well.  Once I got all the carbs out of my system, it's been a lot easier to stay away from them.  And, I ordered some ketostix from amazon.  They should arrive sometime tomorrow.  Once I get the ketostix, I will confirm that I am in ketosis, and then I'll try adding a few more veggies into my program.  As long as I can stay in ketosis and not have carb cravings, it would be great to add in more veggies.

So, that's the report for the day, with a quick summary:

Food:  Great
Exercise:  1 Hour of Yoga
Gratitude:  Michael's perfect day streak.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Year 2! The last 365 days were just a warm up!

I am so excited to be starting the second year of this journey.  And starting it strong!  This morning I weighed in at 296.5.  It's not the lowest I've gotten, but it's an improvement over the last month or so.  And, it means the scale is moving in the right direction.  I'll take it.

Steve took the before/now picture.  I love that I can SEE the progress I've made over the last year.  And, I can see how far I have yet to go.  But, I have big hopes for year two.

I'm tweaking my program just a little bit:

Diet:  Full Ketogenic diet.  Very few carbs.  As much organic as we can possibly afford.

Exercise:  6-7 hours of exercise a week.  If I do two hours on Monday, then I can take both Tuesday and Thursday as rest days.  But, if I am feeling strong, more exercise is always good.  I'm loving my mix of strength training, cardio, and yoga.  I will definitely stick with that.

Gratitude:  I want to go back to remembering at least one thing to be grateful for each day.  It's such a positive, uplifting way to end the day.  I need this.

Accountability:  I will post my weight every Monday morning.  I need the accountability of reporting it.  If it goes up a little, it will mean I try harder the next week.  NOT the end of the world.  I will take a new picture the first Monday of of every month.  Of course, if I'm traveling, I'll have to adjust.

Flexibility:  I will NOT beat myself up if I'm not absolutely perfect. I will do my very best, but I cannot expect more than that.  And, when I am traveling for a vacation, I will probably take a few days off.  The body needs rest, and I definitely need a vacation.  Unfortunately, my next planned vacation doesn't happen until November.  I can make it.

Support:  I will keep up this blog, and my facebook page.  I really appreciate everyone who reads these and comments.  Your support is what keeps me going.  And, I wouldn't be able to do this at all without Steve.  He is he one who makes the time so I can exercise.  If that isn't true love, I don't know what is!

So, that's it.  What do you think?

Todays Results:
Weight:  296.5
Diet:  100% on track
Exercise:  1 hour muscle challenge class, 1 hour yoga
Gratitude:  My friends and family who support me.  Just seeing all the likes and shares on my facebook page today made me smile from ear to ear.  Thank you!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Day 365 - One Year Complete!!!!

This has been an amazing year!  I can't believe today marks it so perfectly. I did the Biggest Loser 5K RunWalk with several friends of mine from the Biggest Loser Resort Niagara, and from work.  It was an amazing experience.  However, it was also really, really hot.  I didn't do as well as I was hoping, but I did finish.  And, considering how hot and tired I was, I am taking that as a complete victory.  Two of my friends did the entire 10K.  I don't know how they did it, but they have my eternal respect!

I will post a few pictures of the 5K, and our party afterwards.  Tomorrow, I will post the official year end before/now picture.  And then, I'll kick off year 2!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Day 363 - Yoga and Excitement

Friends that I met at the Biggest Loser Resort Niagara are starting to arrive in the DC area for the big 5K/10K Run/Walk this weekend.  I am so excited to see them!  In some ways it seems like we just left the resort.  In other ways, it seems like forever.  I am so looking forward to catching up with everyone, and getting in a great walk, too.  This is going to be an amazing weekend!

But, just like every Friday night, tonight was my Friday Night Yoga class.  It was a really good class, as usual.  I worked really hard, and was dripping sweat.  But, by the end, I was completely calm and relaxed.  I know that's the way it's supposed to work, but for me, it seems like magic.  I've never had anything else calm me as much as this one class does.  Nancy will always be my hero because of how well I sleep on Friday nights!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Day 361 - Just Yoga

Short and sweet - tonight was a regular yoga class at the gym.  It was a great class, though.  When I left I had worked up a great sweat, got really stretched, and then relaxed at the end of class.  I still can't hold my down dogs as long as the rest of the class, but I'm getting better.  I just love when I realize how much more flexible I am, how much stronger, and how much I actually enjoy exercise.  Who would have ever thought that?

Monday, July 8, 2013

Day 359 - Still Going Strong on Mondays

I was a little worried about going into my two classes tonight.  Since I haven't been feeling as strong with the new diet, I wasn't sure I'd do well.  But, I was wrong.  I had two really great classes.  I was completely exhausted by the end of the second class, but feeling so strong and proud of myself.  Who knows, maybe I'm turning a corner!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Day 358 - Yin Yoga

I was feeling really stressed and achy today, so I decided to do a Yin Yoga video.  It was really, really good.  When it was over, I felt totally stretched and completely relaxed.  Heaven!  It's not as active as the yoga classes I normally do, but really focuses on holding the poses longer, getting a deep stretch.  Today, it was exactly what I needed.

And, I can't believe that I have one week left until the year mark on this journey.  And, I didn't realize it when I planned it, but I'll be doing the 5K to mark the date.  How serendipitous is that?  I've been really frustrated with my weight the last several months, but right now, I just feel like everything happens for a reason.  I'm so excited for the 5K next weekend, and seeing so many of my friends from Biggest Loser Resort Niagara.  It is going to be so much fun, I can't wait!

And, a few people have asked if I'll be doing anything differently once I reach the one year mark.  Mostly, my posts won't start with day numbers any more.  Other than that, I plan on sticking with the exercise, and the diet.  I'll make tweaks along the way, my committment to see this through is still strong. The support of everyone reading this blog ensures that I can't fail.  Thank you!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Day 357 - Tired, But Sticking to It

The title pretty much says it all.  I'm really tired, and have had a slight headache all day.  I'm guessing that means my body isn't all that happy with the switch to the new diet.  But, I am hoping it will only be a few days until I'm used to it.  Who knows, maybe suddenly I'll have energy and be bouncing off the walls.  I can dream!

On the other hand, I did get a good workout in, somehow.  I did thirty minutes on the elliptical, with some pretty hard intervals set.  Then, for the second half hour, I set it to manual, level 15, and let it go.  It was a pretty intense workout, and one of the reasons I've been so tired all afternoon.

My brain is kinda foggy, so I'm going to leave it at this for tonight.  Here's looking forward to a good night's sleep and more energy tomorrow!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Day 356 - Thank You

I just wanted to say thank you to my friends who have contacted me and supported me these last few days.  It's been reall hard to admit to myself that I've been so stuck and so depressed about it.  It really helps to know that I'm not alone, and that I have friends who support me.  Thank you!

Today was the second day of extreme low carb.  It's not as hard as I expected.  I'm a little more hungry than I expected to be, but it's managable.  I just need to figure out what I'm going to be eating, stock up, and cook.  That will help alot.

For exercise today, I did my Friday night yoga class.  Apparently, class is more challenging over the summer.  But, I was able to do a balancing half moon pose tonight.  Or at least, something loosely based on the pose.  I was balancing.. and that counts!  It was definitely a hard class tonight, but fun, too.  Why can't every day be Friday?

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Day 355 - Independence Day

I had a doctor's appointment on Monday, and was complaining to him about my lack of weight loss, despite all the exercise I've been doing.  Given everything else, he suggested that I might want to try a ketogenic diet.  A very strict one, at that.  But, since I'm absolutely desperate at this point, I decided to try it.

Today was day one.  I decided it was the perfect day to declare independence from my weight.  The diet isn't terribly different from the paleo diet, but much stricter, and much less wiggle room.  So, I wasn't expecting the first day to be too bad, and it wasn't.  I know it's silly, but I'm allowing myself to get my hopes up. 

And, in other news, I tried a video from yoga download today.  It was a beginner class, but still pretty intense.  I worked up a good sweat, and really enjoyed the final relaxation.  To me, that means it was a good class.  And, it also means I have plenty of room to grow.  If you like yoga, definitely check out the site.  They have a ton of classes, and a lot of them are free.  So far, I'm really enjoying it.  I might even do a relaxation class before bed tonight.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Day 354 - Budget Busting, But Brilliant

OK, I have officially busted my budget for personal training.  I had planned to take a couple weeks off, but when she said she had an unexpected opening, and wanted to know if I wanted to make up for missing Monday's class, what could I say?  So, I did an extra session today, and it was great.  But now, I'm dead tired, my muscles are killing me, and I need to readjust my budget for the month.  But, it still counts as a great day.