Friday, September 20, 2019

The work week struggled

I have come to the conclusion that my life is full and boring....at least during the work week!  Yup, what can I say about the work week?  Not much.  I wake up, yoga, shower, drive, work, drive, make dinner, watch an hour or so of tv, sleep.....repeat.  That is why our weekends are crazy busy with activity...we are cramming it all into the weekends!  Lol

I do typically hold myself together really well on the work weeks in terms of my eating.  It is easier because I am in a pretty tight and steady routine! So that is good.   But it is difficult because adding in anything else is difficult!  It’s hard to add in something after work because I’m exhausted after an 11 hour day (sometimes longer depending on how the commute goes).  Furthermore,  If something changes it throws the balance of what I do get done off!

The balance was thrown off this week.  I have been given the temporary task of training the new hire class.  That means that I am away from my desk all day.  The emails keep coming...my daily work is still there....the requests for my assistance are still pouring in.  My breaks and lunch historically get gobbled up as I attend to those things. That hurts me because my breaks and lunches are the times that I get outside and walk!  It is my little oasis of activity!  I tried to tell myself when I started this current class that I wouldn’t let that happen.  

But day one rolled around (yesterday...Thursday) and guess who didn’t go out for a walk?   Not one walk?  Yes, that’s right...me!   My only salvation is that I am NOT a trainer that sits on my butt...I move around a LOT...so my step count didn’t suffer yesterday.  I got the same or more steps.  But still, I like my walks!  So,   I am vowing to get out for at least my lunch break today!

The weekend is right around the corner and I am happy!  I am tired and need the rest....or maybe the crazy busy that the weekends usually are!  This weekend will be extra busy as we prepare for vacation because that is right around the corner also!!!

Happy weekend!!!

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Being a Female in a Male Dominated Sport

Mountain biking......this sport has been an interesting one to enter.   From spills and tumbles to pain and glory, this summer has been a crazy ride as I have entered the sport.  I have learned SO much and still have SO much more to learn.  However, I never thought about the aspects of entering a sport that is pretty much male dominated.  SO I am going to do my public service announcement to all you single ladies.....mountain biking...you can find a fit man out on the trails!  :-)

A few weeks back we were out riding and while we were stopped (at the hill that I call my nemesis) a rider came up on us and stopped to talk.  This guy ONLY talked to me and mostly just ignored Jason.  Oh yeah, it was that obvious.  It did NOT matter to this guy that I am wearing a ring......ok, it's a promise ring but there IS a ring on that all important finger!   I am nice (probably too nice sometimes) and talked to him but was happy when we said our goodbyes and we headed in the direction that we were travelling and this lecher headed off in his direction.  One hour later we ran into him AGAIN!  Really?  On all these miles of trails we had to run into you twice?   Once again he talked....to me and ignored Jason. Finally we moved on and all was good.   We talked about the leach and I have told Jason that if we run into him again...or anyone like him to not be surprised if I start talking about how it's so nice to be out with my husband on the trail.   I will be throwing in the phrase my husband constantly.  Because...well husband is a more strong word than 'boyfriend'.    Luckily he was on board with that!

So this past weekend we were out again and the first time we saw this new guy he just said 'hi' and complimented us on our bikes as he passed us.  But the second time he passed, he stopped to talk. This guy was fine and was not trying to poach on Jason's territory and spoke to both of us equally, so I didn't have to pull out the 'husband' phrases constantly.  In fact, this guy just automatically assumed we were married (you could tell from his comments).  But in the course of the conversation and through his final words to Jason, I realized just how rare of a breed that I am.  You see, I am out there with my man....and enjoying it!  (Yeah, I have to admit that I am starting to enjoy the rides...not the pain and the hard parts, but I am starting to enjoy this!)   I am willing to step into a sport that scares me to death sometimes.  I am willing to push myself out of my comfort zone to the point that I am starting to enjoy a sport that Jason loves.   This guys words that he muttered to Jason as we were parting..  "You lucky bastard"    

Right  now I'm feeling a bit 'good' and cocky.    NO, I have no desire to see the leach ever again..but it makes me proud of myself for being out there doing it!   And the second guy’s comment?  Yes, Jason is lucky  (how could he not when he has me ...hahaha).......but even more so, I am lucky to be with a man that has been willing to sit back and take the time to ride with me, a much slower rider.  He has sat beside me while I have meltdowns on the edge of a trail.  He has been the patient one.  I think I am the lucky one!  

As I ride more and more.  As I get to the point that I can kinda hang with the guys I am sure I will have more experiences and discover what it really means to be in a sport that is male dominated.  You see, I am doing something that most women don't even consider....and even more shocking?  I am doing it in my late 40's!  I must be crazy!

So single ladies...this is your public service announcement....get out and ride your bike!!!!


Monday, September 16, 2019

Weigh in Results

Another week in this weight loss journey is in the books.  I continued on much like normal for this past week.  However, I DID change my eating plan just a bit and let me tell you.  I was SCARED that I had messed everything up!!


As I wrote recently  I decided that I needed to change up my eating a bit.  That mainly meant that I would no longer be doing the 16:8 intermittent fasting and that I would be eating something at breakfast.  It also meant that I would be raising my calorie count on the weekends that I am riding heavily (and on the day after an intense ride).   I was confident with my plan.  I was pretty sure it was the right thing to do, but actually carrying out this plan really scared me.  I was super afraid that I would be upsetting the fine line of balance that I have achieved over the last few months.  You see, for the first time in my adult life I feel at peace and balanced in regards to my food intake and choices.  I don't feel guilty when I do indulge in a bit of a sweet treat. I also don't feel deprived when I do NOT indulge.  The indulgences are not everyday and not even every other day (or every third day).  I probably indulge maybe once a week.....and usually the indulgence falls on an intense workout day.   So you see, I didn't want to mess up that balance in my head.  But, of course I was also worried that it would backfire in regards to the numbers on the scales.

This past week’s weigh in should have been a lose week as this  was the lose weight week  on this new gain/maintain one week and lose the next see saw that I seem to be riding.  When  I went to step on the scales I just crossed my fingers that I lost!  I did!
I also went to see my family doctor this past week.  I had to have my annual physical.  But I also needed to talk to her about my weight, simply because I needed her to sign off on an appeal paper for my health insurance (so that I could reap the healthy weight discount on my monthly premiums).    She was happy with my efforts this past year.  She is happy with my plans and where I am at with my eating.  She concurs with my raised calorie intake plan.  She IS however concerned about my blood pressure.  It was elevated a bit. (I do have a touch of white coat syndrome...lol)  But all in all, it was a good visit.

So, This upcoming week is the week that I have been typically maintaining (or gaining).  This week is the TRUE test of my raised calories and breakfast experiment.  I've got my fingers crossed that I have found the magic solution to get this weight dropping CONSISTENTLY!  A weight loss journey is not for the faint at heart.  This weight loss journey is a constant battle to find the right balance, the right plan, the right everything.  I will keep adjusting and keep striving for my goals.  I KNOW that they are worth it!












Friday, September 13, 2019

The value of ourselves


I have always cringed when I hear someone say that they are losing weight in order to find their perfect partner.  They say that ‘if only I was thin I could find true love.”  These people talk about not being able to live a life and have friends because “I just need to be thin”.    Being thin becomes the holy grail!  Losing weight becomes the solution to all of their problems.  But I am here to tell you that the solution is NOT to lose weight.  The solution is to realize that your self-worth comes from within and NOT from our looks.
Self-worth starts with sitting back and realizing that who we are has so very little to do with the way we look.  It doesn’t come from how much we weigh or how we have styled our hair.  It comes from our personality. It comes from the intrinsic goodness of our souls.  It comes from the kindness of our words and the gentleness of our smiles.  (Or the flip side, it comes from the darkness and nastiness that burns within you if you are one of those people that are mean!) Who we are comes from our hearts and it is THAT facet of us in which our self-worth really comes from.   What the world looks at is only the outside layer.  It’s the skin that protects us.  It is just the packaging for who we are. 
I received the birthday gifts in the mail.  They were wrapped in the brown packaging that they were shipped in.  I kept staring at the packages as the date of the birthday drew nearer.  I knew I needed to wrap them.  I had the birthday gift wrap but I just kept delaying it.   Eventually (hours before the gifts were to be presented) I wrapped them in the festive paper.  Whew…I had done it!  But why?    I literally took off the original packaging and replaced it with a ‘prettier’ packaging.  Did it change the gift at all?  Absolutely not!  The gift was the exact same….it didn’t matter if it was a pretty package or a bland package.  It was what was inside the packaging that counted and mattered to the person that received the gifts.     At the end of that day when the gifts were opened, where did that pretty packaging end up?  It was in the garbage, it wasn’t worth ANYTHING!

Aren’t we just like the packaging on that gift? We can be in an overweight body or we can be in a thin body but does it change who we are inside?   Just like that gift it doesn’t change who we are.    We can wrap ourselves up in a pretty package.  We can lose the weight, restyle our hair, work on our tans and otherwise take care of any and all issues that we think we have with our bodies but what difference does it make?   We are the SAME PERSON no matter what we weigh!
This is a difficult concept to accept and to believe.  Our society has placed so much emphasis on our weight and our appearance that many people are focused on it.   Many people have been ridiculed for their weight (hair, acne, etc) and it isn’t easy to get over.  I get that.  But we need to step back and say ‘It’s just the packaging and those people are too shallow to see that the inside is the same!’
I did an experiment a while back.  I flat out asked people to say something about me.  I wanted to hear what people said. It was awkward because I felt like I was fishing for compliments….but I truly wanted to hear and to share what people REALLY think about me.  So here goes….
·          always available and ready to help
·          approachable and easy to talk to
·         Vibrant personality
·         Great training
·          amazing instructor
·         Awesome, biggest supporter, great listener, non-judgmental, persistently keeping goals in mind and strives for those goals
·         Inspirational
·         Always pleasant and treats you like a friend from the first hello
·         Pleasant and genuine
·         The real deal
·         Go get it attitude and meticulous and organized
·         Someone who gives her heart and soul to each task
·         Contains more creativity in her little finger than most people have in their whole body
·         Nice, sweet, helpful, friendly, outgoing
·         Loud
·         Outgoing and loyal
Not ONE person said anything about my physical appearance.  They all talked about my personality.  They talked about my work ethics.  They talked about my knowledge and my natural gifts.  Not ONCE did they say anything about my weight…..yet some of them have known me at my highest and lowest weights.  In fact, after I explained what my experiment was to one friend she remarked. “I don’t see people for their size but for their heart.  I don’t have fat friends….but I do have GREAT friends.”  That sums it up so perfectly.  
I once heard this remark.  It was in regards to someone that had made a bit of a negative remark about how someone was overweight.  The overweight person responded with, “I can lose weight and look great…my issue is totally changeable.  However, you can’t change your personality.  I can change and be thin and gorgeous….but you will still be mean and spiteful.  Honestly,  it’s you that I pity!”   How true was that comeback? 
Still think that the weight is important?  Sure, we all like a certain type of body, hair color or skin tone (just to name a few) when we are looking at potential partners.  But WHY would you be with someone that is so wrapped up in that one physical attribute.  What happens if that attributes changes?  Will they throw you to the curb like yesterday’s garbage if you gain a bit of weight?  What happens if you lose your hair through some horrible disease or accident?  Would they still love you then?  I don’t know!   I would NEVER want to be with a partner who says they love me but in reality only loved me if I was thin.  Love me fat….love me thin….love me with a curly thick head of hair or bald as a new born baby.  Love me in a variety of different ‘packages’ because the packaging that is me can change….but my heart remains the same!
So that said, I do want to say that it IS ok to try to change the outward appearance of ourselves.   It is perfectly ok.  There is nothing wrong with saying, “I am awesome just as I am…but I want to lose weight to make myself even better.”  There is nothing wrong with saying, “I like me but I would like to be thinner for ME”   Or you can be thinking, I love ME and it is quite ok to not love the packaging.  It’s ok to say “I would like to be in a nicer package.”  Just remember that It doesn’t change you are, it’s just the packaging…..it doesn’t change the ‘gift’ that inside!
I have been there.  I have totally tried to lose weight for the wrong reasons.  I lost a WHOLE BUNCH of weight once in an effort to make my ex love me.  He was always looking at this or that type of person and I tried my hardest to be and achieve what I thought he wanted.     I lost the weight.  But guess what?  It didn’t make him love me….because I just changed the packaging on my body and nothing else changed in our relationship.  He wasn’t in love with the internal facets of me….he wasn’t in love with my personality and quirkiness.  It didn’t work….you can change the packaging but that is all it is, just the fluff package.   Consequentially, I regained a good portion of that weight.  I had lost it for the wrong reasons.  I had not learned the valuable lesson of learning to love ME just as I am. 
Find happiness within yourself.  Think of your internal attributes.  Think of your sense of humor, your gentleness toward animals, your kindness toward the elderly, your vivacious personality, the way you try to help others….whatever makes you…..that individual you.  THAT is what is important.  The  packaging/external 

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Trail of Tears Again

We had a fabulous time again this past weekend. Jason has turned into a bit of a wonderful motivator.   He is really helping me remember to push myself and keeping me motivated and moving. 

Our weekend started off with our normal grocery trip extravaganza. We typically end up going into three stores… Mostly because I’m cheap and we can get different things quite a bit cheaper at some places.  We went early and got all of our stuff purchased  and put away by 10:30 on Saturday morning. We grabbed the bikes and out we went. We decided to head to my favorite park and we decided to also take it easy and not really push ourselves too hard. I still pushed myself really hard.  There was one area that I have never even attempted, and I was determined to do it. I kept my head down and I was really chugging on.  I didn’t even tell Jason I was going to attempt it, I just kept riding toward the section and motioned him with my hand to keep going!  I was killing it until I looked up and forward and saw how much more I had to go to complete it.  At that moment my body just gave up....or rather my mind gave up and my body believed my mind!   No worries, I’ll get that one eventually. I have so many things that I need to conquer… And I will! It was a really good ride… And might I even say, it was a little bit fun!
We went home, and dropped off the bikes and within a very short period of time we were heading back out the door. We decided to walk all around downtown Frederick, the town where we live. 3 1/2 to 4 hours later, and my legs were toast! We moseyed through quite a few stores but the highlight (for me at least) was the open house at one of the old churches in downtown Frederick. The congregation for this church founded in 1784...that’s some age right there!  
Pipe Organ

We got home, showered and we had our weekly picnic… Grilling our dinner. I was one tired girl by the time we went to bed!!

On Sunday, I woke up and actually felt pretty good. I had a little stiffness maybe, but overall I was feeling pretty good. So we grabbed the bikes and out we went. Jason left the final decision of where we were going to bike that day up to me. I was so nervous when I suggested that we go to the trail of tears. Seriously, this trail has chewed me up and spit me out on so many occasions. Like here  Or here .    So, it is always with fear and trepidation that I go to the trail of tears. But, there was also a small amount of idle curiosity within me. You see, we had not been to the trail of tears in over a month. I have been riding religiously throughout that one month though. How would my body do on this trail. (And the trails that I do ride, are pretty difficult… Some of them are even ranked more difficult than the trail of tears… I just have some mental block to the trail of tears) but, I suggested it and off we went. Jason kept telling me that we didn’t have to do the whole thing and to not forget that it’s OK to walk. I hit the trail and I am proud to say that I made it the whole way out to the turnaround point without having to walk my bike over any hill!   I did still walk through the one feature… But I rode every other inch of that trail. There were sections that were hard for sure. But, they were not as hard as they used to be. Yeah, it kind of  shocked me to find it easier this go round!!!  I was so excited at the turnaround mark because I had ridden every section of the trail! I had not walked! I had not stopped to cry! 

  I was worried about the trip back though!   I knew I had at least an hour of riding to get back to the car!  I told Jason that I was worried and he reminded me that I can always stop to rest and I could always walk. I honestly fully expected to have to walk. I started back.  There were some sections that I was slow as molasses on the way back. But I am here to tell you, that other than that one big dip of a feature… I rode every inch of the trail back to the car! Yes, I surely did. So now for the really big announcement about the trail of tears… There were a few fleeting moments of fun-ness that happened. I’m not going to say it was all fun… I’m not even gonna say it was half fun… Because I would never admit something like that!  (Hahaha. Jason says someday I will admit it!).  But there were moments of fun for sure. I was flying on some sections… And I love to go fast! Am I ready to rename this trail to something other than trail of tears? Nope! Honestly, I think it will always be the trail of tears for me… Even though Jason insists that eventually I’ll call the trail of tears easy.

We dropped the bikes off at home at around 2 o’clock at home and since we were already sweaty and hot we figured why not go out for a hike. We didn’t go long or hard. Just an hour in the woods. Just enough to stretch our legs! By the time we were done… I was totally fried. Even Monday morning I was aching  something fierce. My biggest issue is the arthritis in my knees. But that’s OK, I know that I did good for my body this weekend!

We are killing it on the trails!   I just may become a badass mountain biker yet!!!

Monday, September 09, 2019

Weight loss and changes

Another week has passed and my official weigh in has been signed, sealed and delivered!

I was NOT overly happy with my weigh in this week.  It could have been worse...but it SHOULD have been a whole lot better!  I kept my food totally under control!  my calories were in line. I limited my carbs.  I didn't eat bad choices, I ate healthy!  There is NO reason!  (Ok, so my monthly 'ick' was arriving on the day of my weigh in....but really?)


Seriouslu,look at my stats!   Yeah, you can see my calories were a bit higher on three days.




But, look at it when you add my exercise in!



And then here is my weigh in results!


So this week made me really sit back and think about what I’m doing.  I talked a friend and got some advice. (thank you Donna)   I had already been thinking that maybe, just maybe I was eating too little.  I know...crazy right????    I have my profile on myfitnesspal set to a sedentary lifestyle.  That is true...because on the weekdays I work a desk job and I spend 3 hours in my car for my commute to and from work.  That is pretty sedentary!    But on the weekends, I am anything BUT sedentary.  I haven't been eating many of those extra calories either.... rather I only a few minimal extra calories. Is my body going into starvation mode?  I know I lose LESS (or even gain) the weeks where I am REALLY active on each weekend day.    My friend had a few suggestions but the one that I am trying first is to STOP the intermittent fasting.  If I am already  eating on the cusp of starvation (ok, I’m not close to starving....I'm completely satisfied...and obviously still overweight) maybe  that 16 hours of fasting is just emphasizing the 'almost' problem.  Maybe that long fast is just exacerbating the hunger and making it an issue.

On Tuesday I had a situation where when I started to think about it, it ALL made sense.  We had hiked on Monday and I had eaten a HUGE dinner......I felt stuffed (but I was still pretty close to my goal of 1550 calories....look above I didn't eat crazy!)     I woke up on Tuesday and within 10 minutes I felt HORRIBLE!  It felt like I was getting the flu!   I worried but got ready for work. I was fully expecting to have to go home half way through the day.  But then at about 8AM I heard my stomach growl.  What?  So  I dug into my emergency food and broke my fast early with a power bar.  I felt better.....for about an hour and then the sickness came back.   ALL. DAY. LONG.  I would eat something and feel better but then an hour or so later I would feel miserable again.  What the heck?  When I got home I had some chips while I was making dinner and then dinner and voila, I felt perfectly fine!  I had just been hungry all day and unable to catch up with just the 'snacky style' food I had on hand....and obviously my fruit and cheese lunch hadn't been enough either. (Duh, I could have gone to the cafeteria had I known that it really was just hunger!)

SOOOO, I am stepping away from the intermittent fasting for a while.  I want to see what happens.  I am also making a concerted effort to eat more on the weekends when I am super active.   It really makes me panic though......I have been so comfortable with where I am...for the first time in my adult life!  I have been so worried about upsetting the balance.  But, this quest to be healthy is not about sitting back and being comfortable....it is about the journey to fitness and weight loss.  It is about making me the best me possible!  So while I don't want to lose that peace and balance that I have found with food....I know that I need to find the balance that my body needs also!  This really is a total body journey!

Friday, September 06, 2019

Life lessons learned on a Mountain bike

We have been riding our bikes a lot lately.  It has been difficult as I am still quite overweight.  It has been crazy as I have very few skills that pertain to riding mountain bike trails.  It has been eye opening!  I have constantly been learning.  But the lessons that I am learning are not for mountain biking only.  You see, these lessons really do pertain to life in general.

So what I have I learned?

1.  I have learned that I need to not be embarrassed about being overweight and being out on the trails.  You see, only about 20% of the population actually exercises.  What?   So how in the world can I feel shame when I am beating about 80% of the population?   Sure, I huff and puff. Sure I struggle.  But I am doing it!   This pertains to ANY and ALL forms of exercise...not just biking!

2.  I have learned that sometimes we don't want to do something even though we know that it is the best option for us.  Sometimes we do have to push ourselves.  And that is ok   But many times we will find out that those days that we push ourselves out of our comfort zone turn out to be the best experiences!

3.  Our worst enemy is actually ourselves.  I went out to ride and I didn't want to go.  I was resisting and came up with a gazillion excuses in my head.  I totally talked myself out of wanting to ride and those voices in my head continued the whole way on the ride.  I rode SLOW.  I rode SLOPPY.  I moaned and I groaned.  I felt like I had been hit by a train.  Yeah, there may have been other factors that contributed to my feelings, but I do know that those thoughts that filled my head really affected my riding.  I talked myself into a bad ride.    I knew it....but it seemed that I was powerless to turn it around!    This really was a lesson that I needed to learn, not just for mountain biking but for life!  You see, I can talk myself into saying  "I just can't lose weight'  and once you say it....you really do start believing it.  We believe our words...we take them as gold and therefore we really don't TRY.

4.  A more recent one is the fact that this journey of learning to mountain bike is filled with times where I could give up and call myself a failure.  I fall off the bike.  I have to walk.  I struggle.  It would be so easy to give up and call it quits!  But quitting is NEVER the way to reach a goal.  If I want to succeed, I need to get back on my bike and ride!   Weight loss is the same.  I will have meals or days where I struggle.  Sure, I could quit.....but that would  never allow me to reach my goal.  To Succeed in weight loss I need to get my butt back in line and keep trying.  I have to get back on that bike and ride  If at first you don't succeed, try try again!

I am sure that there will be more and more life lessons learned while I am out there on the mountain bike.  It just seems to happen naturally as I am riding  Events occur and then I sit on my bike thinking about them as we ride onward.  But you know what?  I am open and willing to learn. I want to make me the best possible me that I can.  That is part of my weight loss journey.  And to make me better, I have to learn and grow.  So bring it on!!!

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Fixing the next Issue

We had a wonderful three day weekend!  Why can't they all be three day weekends?  OH, because then I would be wanting them to all be four day weekends!

We rode our bikes twice  Once on a mountain bike trail.

Once on the Canal.

And we even got in a long hike!

I have been thinking a lot about my weight and these bike rides.  I know that mountain bike riding is a wonderful way to lose weight.  It works!  But I seem to be struggling!   REALLY struggling.  After a weekend of riding, my weight is almost ALWAYS up.  It is infuriating.  It is annoying.  It is maddening!

It has happened time and time again.  I have a weekend where we ride less and I lose weight that week.  The weeks that we ride hard and often I don't lose....and sometimes even gain.  What is up with this?  My calories are in check!   Seriously!

 I aim for between 1200 and 1500 calories a day.   All was looking well.  I was a bit higher on Saturday and Sunday.  BUt then lets add in my exercise and I was spot on!

Uhhhhhhh so what's the problem...because that looks pretty spot on to me?

I know a few weeks ago I talked about possible reasons.  (You can read it here)  I still stand by those possible things.

*I still do think that it very well could be a hydration thing.  My muscles are almost always screaming at me after a weekend ride.  While those muscles are healing and repairing themselves they are retaining water.

* I also do still believe in the muscle vs fat thing.   Am I building muscle faster than I'm losing the fat?   It is possible? But for an extended time?  Well if this is what is happening then I'm going to be RIPPED when the fat finally goes away!

* Am I not eating properly to lose weight while biking?   Most recently I'm wondering if I'm not eating enough?  Is my body going into a starvation mode on those days?  I have been notcing that on these really hard ride days that I develop a killer headache by the time dinnertime rolls around.  Food makes the difference!  That is my body telling me something is not right.    That is my body telling me to eat!   This past weekend I ate my dinner after our ride  I sat there after eating and input my calories  I had eaten 1200 calories.  I was still hungry!   SERIOUSLY.  I actually waited an hour before getting something else to eat.  I was ravenous.  Am I starving myself?

*  I know that the days we are riding, I have been drinking..but is it enough?   Saturday I ddi really well and think I drank about 100 ounces of water.  (and a 44 ounce Diet Soda).  But on Sunday, while we rode a less intense ride I know that I probably only drank 30-40 ounces.  So could this issue be partly my fault??????

I am just totally frustrated!   I am happy with the path that I am on.  I know that my relationship with food is healthier than it has been in a LONG time.  I am on the right path.  I just need to settle in and fix this one last issue and the results will come pouring fourth!

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Monthly Recap

Well then, I went to write this post and realized that I never posted on Friday.  Oh well......you will get to read it in a future post because right now it is time to look back to the month of August and see how I did in my weight loss journey.  Oh, and we will also look forward to the month of September and set some new weight loss goals.

Before we get into the monthly goals, lets talk about my weight loss for this past week.    I was happy with myself!  Quite happy.

So now that we know that I had a great week, lets talk about my monthly goals. At the beginning of August I set a few goals for myself. 

So here were my August Goals and how I did!!!!
1.  Track every bite of food!   NAILED IT!   This one has been non-negotiable for me and I do not waver.  If I eat it, it's tracked!
2.  Put money into my savings.  Done!  Although I did buy a new camera and that meant I didn't put quite as much in the savings....but that's ok, because we do sometimes have to splurge on a treat for ourselves!
3.  Weigh less than I do now!  I don't care if it's a measly ounce...I want to weigh less!   This one I did manage to reach.  I was getting really worried.  The first week of August I gained weight.  (like 2 pounds)  the Second week I lost what I had gained.  THe third week?  I maintained.  And then this last week I lost.  So it was a bit touch and go!
4.  Do something active (a walk suffices) at least 3 times a week and aim for at least three sessions of formal activity (bike ride, run, hike) a week!    There was no question about this goal.  I didn't just meet it, I totally blew it out of the water! Seriously! I walked every day at work (I think there was one day where it rained that I skipped!).   I rode my bike every weekend, usually two times.  I did yoga every weekday morning.  I was active!!
5. Keep my eating in check for at least 6 days a week.   BINGO...I did great.  I was a bit higher on my bike days, but I was still well under control!
7.   Walk an average of 5000 steps  per day. (total monthly steps divided by the days in the month....bike ride days on the trail are exempt from the 5K step goal...cuz it's hard to get  steps when you are riding)    I also nailed this one!  You see, I hit the 5k steps ALMOST every day....even the days that we went biking!   So my average was spot on!  I averaged 5250 steps a day! I completed 18 lunch time walks, two runs, 19 sessions of yoga, 1 round of swimming and 7 intense bike rides!   Total win!
         My Not so Secret Goal  Lose 5 pounds!   I didn't meet this goal.  BOOOO

So you can see that I did pretty good on all of my goals.  The plan that I have set is not designed for a fast loss.  It is designed for being sustainable for a life time.  It is a plan designed to really teach me to view and manage my food in a totally different and healthy way.  So, I am happy with my results!

As for my September goals?   
1.  Track every bite of food!
2.  Put money into my savings. 
3.  Weigh less than I do now!  I don't care if it's a measly ounce...I want to weigh less!
4.  Do something active (a walk suffices) at least 3 times a week and aim for at least three sessions of formal activity (bike ride, run, hike) a week!  
5. Keep my eating in check for at least 6 days a week.   
7.   Walk and average of 5000 steps  per day. (total monthly steps divided by the days in the month....bike ride days on the trail are exempt from the 5K step goal...cuz it's hard to get  steps when you are riding)
         My Not so Secret Goal:   Lose 5 pounds!



Why yes, they are exactly the same thing as the August goals.  They are working for me.  They are teaching me all sorts of wonderful things.  I , for the first time in a LONG time feel like I am on a really healthy path within my weight loss journey....both physically and mentally.   

So its time for me to focus on the September goals.  This weight loss journey is crazy but I will come out on the other side a much healthier person.  (and fit and thin also!)

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

That weekend wiped me out

We had a busy busy weekend.  I almost had to go to work to relax and get some rest. Ok, not really!   But it was crazy busy!

Saturday we woke up and we didn’t fiddle around much.   We headed out early to hit all of our stores and do the errands.  (We hit three different grocery stores and one farm stand). We were done all of that by 9:30 and we were ready to roll shortly after that.   

Roll?  Well a bike ride of course!   We headed out toward the same park we had been to the previous week.  We were delighted with the weather....low 80°s and low humidity!!   Awesome!   We wanted to tackle the same trail that we had been on the previous week. And of course I wanted to try the ‘Hill’ that I call my nemesis....I will make it up this hill one day!!

We headed to my nemesis first.  I felt strong.  I was ready.  I did horrible!  Barely a few feet further than my very first attempt!   What the.....?  We retreated and started toward the trail we were planning to ride.  We started to talk about what I was doing and how to correct it.   Before I knew it we had turned around and we’re heading back toward my nemesis for a second attempt.  Not quite a total victory....but not a colossal failure.  I made it about 25 feet further than my previous best.   Slowly but surely I’ll get it!!!!

This time when we left the hill we didn’t go back...and it was time for the trail.   My legs felt strong.  I didn’t feel run down.  Sure, I had to walk my bike up a few hills.  (Seriously, how can they label this one trail as easy....it is horrible...it’s an incline...it has roots and rocks and all sorts of obstacles....I try it...but thus far I have had to always stop to walk!). But even in those places I had to walk, I felt strong.  

The problem?  I was riding sloppy.  Ok maybe it wasn’t me....maybe it was the slight dampness of the trail.  But I had a few near misses.  Most notably when I started to go down and was saved by....a thorny bush.  Luckily the thorn bush was quite thick and dense and it slowed my descent down enough that I was able to get my feet down and stop myself from a total fall.  There were a few other instances...but each time I merrily got back  on my bike and started riding again!

I seriously was feeling so good that as we headed back toward the car, I decided to add another trail!  I did it...safely.  But, that extra trail threw me into the ‘I’m wiped out’ category!   

We got home and it was still early afternoon.  So we showered and headed downtown to walk.  We stopped in some stores and just enjoyed ourselves. I’m sure the walking was a good way to stretch our legs after our ride...but by the time we had done that for a few hours I was absolute toast!  Done.  Finished.  A complete pile of mush!

I woke up on Sunday...I immediately knew I was still struggling with that feeling of being wiped out.  I had totally overdone it on Saturday.  Luckily, we had plans to see family (Jason’s family) to have a belated birthday celebration.  We also stopped to see my family for a bit.  Even with that low key day...I was so tired by the evening that I could barely function!

I guess that is the epitome of a great weekend...when your activities are so fun and awesome that you know you couldn’t have done one more thing!!!  All in all, it was a great weekend...and an active one! What could be better, we had fun and still worked on my weight loss goals.   A double win!!!   I couldn’t have asked for anything better!!  


Monday, August 26, 2019

Voila: The results on the scales

Sometimes in this weight loss journey it really is a mission of just staying the course.  On Friday I wrote a post about 'staying the course'. I was basically writing that because I was pretty happy with my week.  I had exercised.  I had eaten and stayed within my calorie count. I had a GREAT week in terms of living healthy.  I was sure that I was going to slay the beast that we call the scales.

So my official weigh in time arrived and I stepped onto the scales.  And voila......except it wasn't a victorious Voila!   
At least it wasn't a tearful weigh in.  I'll take the maintain.

I was actually halfway expecting the maintain.  It seems as if recently that I have been losing in a cycle.  One week I have a great loss and the following week I have a not so stellar weigh in.  Well....this past weigh in was an expected 'not so stellar' one.  And do you know what?  That is ok!



Regardless of what the scales showed, I AM living a healthy balanced life.  I AM making great progress towards being a healthy fit member of society.  I AM  doing what is good for my body, mind and spirit!  

Honestly, I don't even think I can write anything else....that pretty much sums up this blog...this journey.....this life.  Striving to always be better and making slow but steady progress toward the end goal!

Friday, August 23, 2019

Staying the course

It is Friday and I couldn’t be happier!   I am ready for the weekend!   Like normal I am so tired...but that’s ok, I will make it through today for sure!   There really isn’t much to talk about in my weight loss journey this week.  The best way to sum it up is that,’I stayed the course’.

I stayed the course this week.  I tracked my food.   I kept my calorie count in check.  
Total calorie check...



I added as much activity as possible.
Calories with activity added in....


  I would say that  lived a pretty healthy life this week.   Will it equate to a loss on the scales?   Well, we will find out sooner or later. (It will be in Monday’s blog post)

The weather was stinkin’ hot this week.  So the exercise was a real....sweaty chore!  But we did get out on wednesday evening for a half hour mid week bike ride.  Woohoo us!   And I didn’t let the heat deter me from my lunchtime walks.   I didn’t even let it stop me from my break walks.  Outside.In.The.Heat.     Let me tell you...it was still warm on Thursday but the humidity seemed to be lower (I don’t know for sure if it had dropped) and there was a breeze!  It was fabulous!   Enjoyable and refreshing!!! 

I did take a step this week to do something I should have done ages ago.  I measured myself.   I have done this in the past and have never stuck to it...but we shall see!  

This weekend is supposed to be blessedly cool with low humidity.   We are looking forward to it for sure!   We have already decided where we are going to ride!  (Spoiler alert...we are going to do the same loop that we did last weekend!!). We are going to be going to have lunch with Jason’s family to celebrate his birthday on Sunday.  So we are not sure what kind of ride we may be able to get in on Sunday morning early.  But I have a feeling we may try something.    We found a really small pump track in our town at one of the parks.  Maybe we will go there.  But let’s be honest...the pump track kinda scares me...I have no clue what I’m doing.  Let me see if I can describe what a pump track is....it is a loop track that has lots of bumps and small hills.  The theory is that you can get on your bike and use your bike and then  pump your arms and legs at the right spots (in conjunction with the hills and dips) and you should be able to ‘pump’ your way through the track without peddling.   Why does it scare me?   Ok, part of it is that the pump track is like way totally out in the open so everyone will see me....back to the shame at my inept fatness.   Seriously?   I should know to not be embarrassed by now. But I am.   


Oh well.  So that’s my week and a preview of the weekend!!!  I plan on staying the course with this weight loss journey!  I can do it!!



Wednesday, August 21, 2019

A rare occurrence: silence...maybe

Something rare has happened today.   It would shock my family to read this for sure....but I have nothing to say!  Seriously.  I started to think about my post a few days back and came up with nothing.  It kept coming to my mind and I kept coming up blank.  I have been rendered quiet!  It’s rare so enjoy the silence!

Ok, so I’m not quite done.  I guess the process of starting to write sparked some ideas.

This past weekend we rode our bikes twice.  The first  ride was crazy.  I dreaded it from the beginning.  My mind was full of excuses.  I just didn’t want to be there....and it was a rough ride for me!  I was slow and felt sluggish!   It might have been the turmoil pf excuses in my mind playing a mind trick...but it may have also been due to being exhausted in general. I stayed on trails I knew I could complete and I didn’t allow myself to give up and walk.  I KNEW I could clear them and by golly I was going to clear them...and I did!

The next day we went out again and it was much much better! I wasn’t dreading it and we went first thing in the morning so it was cooler (as cool as a heat index of 95-100 can be).  We went on some new trails...and rode for much longer.  I had to walk my bike a few times.  I had to rest  a few times.  But I did it!  I actually rode my bike to the point of near exhaustion.  I was so wiped out!  My legs were sore...I was tired!   It was a good ride!  Lots of calories burned and lots of muscles built!

I have continued with the yoga this week and also have walked on my work breaks and lunch break.  It’s been ungodly hot, but I do it!  

I have dropped 12 pounds or so since the beginning of June....I don’t see a difference in my clothes yet.  I don’t see it.  But people are still commenting on my weight loss....so I will take it as success.  Plus, even if I don’t see it....I know I am making myself strong and fit and that is what really matters!!

So while I am somewhat mute today with a topic to speak about, I am still moving forward in my quest to be healthy and fit (and thin)!  My weight loss journey continues!

Monday, August 19, 2019

Progress

This summer is just marching by at an incredibly fast pace!  We were out this weekend on our bikes and we saw some leaves that were starting to drop. What?   It's too early for that!  And yes, while it is too early for a full onslaught of fall foliage, it is right around the corner!   I am not too upset about that, because I like fall.but it's crazy because that means that it's been almost one season since I recommitted to this weight loss journey.  So where am I?


I do feel as if I have made progress.   I have lost weight.   This time in mid to late May I was sitting at 255 pounds.  I am NOT that weight anymore.  I'm still not where I want to be but I"m making progress.    As of my official weigh in on Friday, I am 238.8.   Not great in my mind but SO much better than where I was just a few months ago.  Progress in the right direction!
We were riding this past weekend on some trails and at one point we hit a trail that we had not been on since almost exactly a year ago.  We had hit this particular trail only 2 or 3 weeks after I had purchased my new bike.   Yesterday, as I roared over obstacles and just bounced down the erosion deterrent steps on a downhill section I couldn't help but smile.   Last year I had carefully chosen the path of least resistance.....swerving and dodging and trying to avoid any obstacle.  That was not the same this year.  I was just taking the obstacles like a pro. (Ok, they were not huge obstacles...I still can't jump over larger things...hahaha).  That's progress.

Another place of progress is with my exercise.  I am doing well with keeping moving!  I do the yoga, I walk on my breaks.  We ride on the weekends.  I'm making progress in building my habits! 

I am making HUGE progress in my balance with food.  I am doing well with learning to manage and eat in moderation.....ok more specifically the treats and fun things. I have refused to give up those items because if I do, I am not 'LIVING"  It has finally clicked in my head that I CAN have them.....but just limited.  And NOT only has it clicked, but I have been for a few months really practicing what my mind knows. I had a piece of brownie this weekend.....but I had had nothing for the preceding week!   And guess what?  I didn't miss it over the week because I KNEW that I could have it when I wanted....but knowing that I had the 'ok' it took away the burning need to have it!  That is HUGE progress for a food addict!

Soo there you go.  An update on the progress of my efforts!  Am I flying through my progression?  NO.  Am I going slow?  YES.   I would like to make progress at a much faster pace but for me and my weight loss journey, this is exactly where I need to be!

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Two weeks of yoga

A week ago I started a new chapter in this weight loss journey.  I decided to give yoga a try.  And let me tell you, this yoga thing has been a crazy adventure thus far.  I have already learned to much about my body!  But lets see how the first few yoga sessions have gone!

 

I am doing Yoga With Adriene, which can be found on Youtube.  I like her style. She is laid back and shows modifications for the moves.  She also encourages us and says that it doesn’t matter where you are….just do it.  So it is easy to struggle through the sessions with her because she is so ‘accepting’.  Yeah, I know…it’s crazy because I feel accepted by a youtube video!


I started doing yoga because I know that it is said to really tone and shape the body.  I also know that a lot of the moves would be beneficial to my bike riding...I figured it would be a win win!


The first few days were atrocious!  I was hurting.  I was hurting BAD.  The first day was great….until about 10 minutes in and then it hit me like a ton of bricks.   That this yogo stuff wasn’t for a sissy!  It was hard!




Day two and I was so relieved to see the title of the video was Gentle and soothing.   Let me tell you there was nothing gentle and soothing about that crap!  I was sweating bullets and in misery! 



And it didn’t get better!  My legs shake.  My arms quiver.  My stomach clenches!   I am dripping sweat!  The struggle is real!  I constantly question myself.  Why am I waking up early to torture myself?  Because seriously…that is what this is.  Torture!


And one of my more recent text messages with my accountability buddy.





I did decide to forego yoga on the weekends.  It just seemed wise since the mountain bike rides are already giving me a full body workout!  I may revisit this in the future but for right now I am ok with this decision to step away from the yoga torture for just a day or two each weekend.

But seriously, what lessons have I learned?  Here they are in a bullet point style format.

·          Apparently, I have no balance!   I am in danger of toppling over quite a bit of the time.  In fact one day I was rather close to the TV and I feared that I would fall and break the television! 

·         I am super excited to see how my body changes and becomes stronger.

·         The arm issue that I have struggled with for months is almost totally gone after only two weeks of stretching with yoga.

·         Watching a short video of myself (and actually posting it on Youtube) was a lesson in humility!

·         I have absolutely NO flexibility!  None!  My body just doesn’t bend!

·         Yoga is difficult with a fat flabby belly getting in the way.

·         It’s not so bad to wake up at 4:45 in the morning to do yoga…..it’s kind of relaxing in a sweaty achy sort of way.

·         My muscles in my legs are SUPER tight and not at all stretchy and loose!

·         I’m toying with buying a yoga block for this experiment. 

•.        I realized it is more than ok to do the moves with modifications...I’ll improve the more I do it.

·         I always believed my legs to be strong….WRONG!

·         Downward dog….cobra….warrior……I’m learning all the poses.  It’s not pretty (yet) but I’m attempting them all!

·         This should make me a strong mountain biker

·         You CAN work up a sweat with simple yoga poses.



I don’t see progress yet….but I’m not giving up.  I’ve committed to 30 days of yoga.  It should have been one month…but it will be closer to a month and a half due to my weekends off.  I’m excited to see the changes that may happen.  I’m looking forward to being strong.  I’m tickled to see how this equates to me being a stronger rider on my bike.  This can only be good….right?

 

Oh and check out my latest YouTube video about a bike ride....  (and subscribe to my channel if you already haven’t....)