Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Exploring abandoned Properties

A few weekends back we had a weekend of great weather.  I am talking sweatshirt and even long tee shirt weather.  60° in mid December!  It was fabulous! We couldn’t let that weather pass us by!  So what did we do???   We went back to an abandoned house that we explored a year earlier!  And we found a second abandoned house to explore!  Be sure to check out the videos at the end if abandoned properties interest and fascinate you!

The first house is the Winderborne Mansion.  It was built in the 1870’s as a summer home for a prominent lawyer in Washington DC.   The family had three kids, one of which died when all three contracted typhoid.  One of those children grew up to become a doctor and her child also died at Winderborne when she fell off the stairway bannister.  The house was sold to another family in 1929 and remains in the possession of that family.  The last resident died in 2004 and there have been attempts to sell the property...with the price dropping substantially over the years.  The house is in a very bad state of disrepair but is absolutely amazing! If only walls could talk...this house would have some amazing stories!    Enjoy the pictures!  

The second house we visited was what I believe to be the White Oak Springs Farm.  This house was built in 1850 and while the brick walls are in good shape, the roof has caved in and the inside of the house is just rotting away.   The outbuildings appear to be in good shape and are well secured against intruders.

We had a fabulous time exploring these abandoned locations and hope to find more abandoned properties to explore.  It is fun to see how people lived in years gone by!  It is fun to try to piece together the history and lives.   It is a look at a piece of history that unfortunately may not be with us for too long.

Monday, December 28, 2020

Shhhhh. I’m not talking about it!

Yes!  It should be a weigh in post!  I am not even going to pretend that it isn’t time for my weigh in!  The time to weigh in has come and gone and here I sit.....quiet.

Nope!  I’m not weigh in in this week!  Suffice it to say that I have however weighed myself each day!  I just am choosing to NOT share.  I am refusing to vocalize it!  (Uhhhhh....I meant to say type it out!).  

Yes, I kinda sorta really lost control.  I have eaten delicious foods galore over the last week!  It’s been pure insanity and I won’t lie....absolutely delicious!  

I am trying to reign myself in NOW and not wait until the new year!   There is no time like now to restart!   That means that I am tracking my food today!  

I am looking forward to the new year.  I have a challenge that I’ll be sharing later this week that I am super excited about.  It should help me immensely in my efforts too!  I am excited to break into my new planner which is laid out and ready for weight loss/healthy living success. (I’ll be sharing that soon also!).   I am ready to rock and roll the year 2021!

So yes, my refusal to talk about and even have an official weigh in is indicative of what the scales are saying.....let’s just say about 2-3 pounds were gained!!!! 

Friday, December 25, 2020

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Goodbye Garmin Hello ........

 It's watch update time!   Yes, it is time for a new watch!!!!  But what did I get?  Why am I saying goodbye to my Garmin Instinct????   So many questions!!

A few years ago, Christmas of 2016 to be exact, I caved and actually joined the Step counting watch bandwagon.  UP until then I had been using the old style clip on pedometers.  They worked....sporadically so I was quit interested in the Fitbit.  But I didn't cave until I found out that I could receive text notifications through my watch.  Yeah....I wanted that but I sat on the fence and didn't buy it for months.  And finally for Christmas I was gifted the Alta Fitbit! (amazon Affiliate link).  I loved it!  I quickly came to love the text notification and knew that I would never want to be without that again (and in fact when I did go to purchase the next watch, that was one of the must have features!).   I had absolutely no problems with that watch.  It worked like a charm.  It did everything it was supposed to do.  It was a great watch.  I had absolutely no issues with the watch at all. Sure, I had to replace some watch bands here and there, but that is to be expected with most any watch.  This watch saw me through the years 2017, 2018 and part way through 2019!  The watch still works to this day (if I should charge it).  A few months ago I wanted to calculate the accuracy of my current watch so I charged up the Alta and wore both watches for a few days.  It worked great!

Mid way through 2019 I began to think about a new watch.  Why?  Because I could! I was wanting to start to run again and my thoughts turned to Garmin because they had always been the 'premier' watch for sports enthusiast. (at least in my mind).  Ok, ok ok....back when I was running religiously I had really wanted a Garmin but did not have the money to purchase one.  So getting the Garmin was I guess somewhat like completing the full circle and closing the chapter!  Whatever the reason, in mid 2019 I found myself the proud owner of the Garmin Instinct. (Amazon Affiliate Link).    I had more problems with this watch.  Within a month I had to get a replacement watch because of battery issues.  But once I got that straightened out, it seemed to work great.  The watch carried me through the year of 2019 and tracked quite a few bike rides.  It carried me most of the way through 2020 but did get some scratches when I went over the handlebars in my spectacular bike accident!

I have absolutely no problem with the Garmin Instinct watch.  But I couldn't help start looking at other watches.  I wanted something more dainty and more streamlined to compliment my new engagement ring after all!  My employer gives/reimburses their employees for up to $300 each year for fitness related purchases.  I found myself sitting at midway through the month of December and I had not yet spent my $300!  What to buy....what to buy!  Why a new watch of course!

Now don't Garmin Instinct will still be used.  I originally planned to wear it when I ride my bike on the mountain bike trails.  However, Jason has claimed the watch as his own!  I am tickled to see it being used and enjoyed!

I pondered a few different watches but kept going back to my appreciation of my first Fitbit.  So I decided to go Fitbit.  I also debated between the Versa 3 and the Sense. (Amazon Affiliate Link) But I finally decided to purchase the Sense. I have only had it on my arm for a few days but I am really liking it thus far!  I am liking the ease of navigating the screen to see the information.  I have checked the step count against other watches and thus far it is spot on.  It is comfortable to wear and I think this will be a great addition to my fitness plans.  This will be coming in handy big time for my upcoming 2021 challenge.....stay tuned!

Monday, December 21, 2020

Weigh in for the week

Oh dear...I am so running behind on today’s  post! And it is a weigh in day!!!    It is so hard to weigh in on Monday morning and then get a post up that day!   Hahahah. Ahh the stress!

So I am going to try weighing in on Sunday’s.  I like having the weekend mostly before my weigh in.  I honestly do think that it helps keep me from indulging too freely!   But it’s hard for me with my posts and YouTube videos.   The accountability from these two places is something that I rely on heavily!  I know from past experience, that when I am not posting on here...I tend to be going off the rails and gaining weight!  Yup,  not good!

So my official weigh in will be Sunday morning giving me all day Sunday to get my Monday weigh in post written but it still keeps me on track for most of the weekend!!!

So on to the weigh in!!!!

I lost!!!  Hip hip hurray!   I lost one pound.  Ok, I am only recouping my birthday gain!  But still...I am back where I was before my birthday gain!  That counts for something...right???

Now on to the week of Christmas!   I want to lose, but if I can maintain through aDecember I’ll be happy!!!!  That’s not too much to ask is it????

Friday, December 18, 2020

How to stop the Self Sabotage in a Weight Loss Journey

 I have been thinking about self sabotage a lot lately.  It is such a real problem for me.  I have some incredible weeks and I am FINALLY moving in the right direction on the scales and it feels as if I am in control and on top of the world.  Everything is going in the right direction and then all of a sudden...BOOM....I find myself in the kitchen eating food with no control.  I even recognize my actions while I'm gorging on the food.  But I say "I don't care."   Why?  Why do I stop caring??

Years ago I made a hefty realization.  I realized that I was totally afraid to lose the weight. I was afraid to shed my fat because I wear the fat as a suit of armor to protect me from the world.  It is my insulation.   The fat is my excuse for everything. "Ohhh, I didn't get that job....must have been discrimination because I was fat".   Makes total sense doesn't it?    Ok to a food addict fat suit of armor wearing girl it does!   Any thing that went wrong....blame it on the fat!  Because you see, it's easier to blame things on the FAT.  It's easier to blame the fat versus say "well maybe I didn't get the job because I bombed the interview" or "maybe I didn't get the job because I am not qualified".  Those are failures and shortcomings of myself and they are harder to admit to!  It's easy to admit to the weight....everyone see's already well known!  So I use it as an excuse!

So to stop the self sabotage in a weight loss journey we need to sit back and we need to think about what is causing us to be fearful.  What are we afraid of?  What is making us be afraid to shed the excess pounds.  Are you afraid of actually discovering who you really are without the fat suit?  Are you afraid that someone won't love you?  Or that someone will love you?  Are you afraid of the unknown?  What is the fear....because sabotage begins in fear!   

Each of us have different fears....but sabotage is rooted in fear.  We have to face those fears.  We have to figure out what we are afraid of and then say,  "What is the worst thing that will happen should I come face to face with my fear"? And once you actually go that have to weigh the risk and benefits and I am 100% positive that the benefits outweigh (pun intended) the risks!  (and let me say...from experience...if you are afraid of losing someone in your life if you lose the weight.....then they are not worthy of being in your life in the first place!!!!)

Self's just fear wrapped up in a pretty package/word!   Face the fears and conquer them!!!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

An important announcement

 I have a HUGE announcement to make!  It is an announcement that I have been wanting to make for quite some time.  However, I wasn't at liberty to make the announcement because it was only a want, it was not a reality!  

But good things come to those that wait....even if I waited with little patience!

ON my birthday I received the best gift of all time!!!!  Jason officially asked me to marry him!!!!!!!!

So yes...I am officially announcing my engagement!!!!!!!!

Monday, December 14, 2020

A great week!!!

 I had a great week......well a great week in terms of my life!  It may not have been so great in terms of my weight loss but we will get to that!

This past week I celebrated my 48th birthday.  I had off my birthday and the day after my birthday.  Jason had to work on the one day so I went to my mom's house and enjoyed time with her.  We had lunch with my brother and his family and it was a great day!

Oh yeah, mom also made me my favorite cookie!  And yes, I sorta kinda lost control of myself when eating them!  I only ate two at a time...and luckily the batch is not a huge batch so I only came home with 12 cookies!  But still.....

We had really nice weather over the we got out and explored and just had some fun!  That was nice to be active and moving and seeing new things!

Ok, so maybe the healthy lifestyle fell by the wayside this weekend.....The weekend is over and I'm right back to it!!!!!!

Friday, December 11, 2020

Four Letter Bad Word

 I have a four letter bad word that I hate to say in conjunction with my weight loss journey.  When I say or hear this word it makes me cringe!   What is the word you may be asking?   The word!  I can not stand the word diet!  It is a horrible word, right?

Ok, honestly when I hear someone use the word as a noun I don't mind it.  For example, "Sally is following a vegetarian diet."  Yup, that's not bad is it.  It's pretty benign that way isn't it? It doesn't hurt to say that.  There really isn't anything negative or bad about it.  Yet I still hate it!   But why do I hate the word diet so badly?

I hate the word diet so badly because this word is most commonly used as a verb.  "Sally is on a diet."   And I do not like the word used that way.  Dare I say it is even akin to a bad word when used as a verb?  But let me dive into the word and talk about why I hate it.

- Diet has such negative emotions connected with it.  So many people go on a diet......and fail.  Yes, there are quite a few people that have had success.  But seriously, how many times do we stumble and fall?  HOw many people just give up and never pick themselves back up after they stumble?  Quite a few!!!  Thus the word diet gets linked with negativity so much.  I do not want my weight loss to be negative.  It's hard enough to overcome the excess weight without added negativity!   Nope.  No DIET for me!

- The word diet many times is linked with crazy fads and ideas. " Eat just this and you will lose 20 pounds in one month!"  Fad DIETS and crazy diet ideas are usually not based on solid nutritional intake of food.  They are based on some crazy idea or plan to drop weight and unfortunately those fad diets many times will actually do your body more harm due to lack of nutrients or overload of one or two specific nutrients.   No thank you, I want to lose weight but I also want to be healthy!  No fad DIETS for me!

-The word diet implies that you are going to restrict or do something short term to lose the weight.  Someone going on a diet is doing it to fit into a dress for a special occasion.  They are doing it short term. It is a temporary change in their life just to reach a goal.  And honestly, that may be ok for a person that never has a weight problem and just gained 5 pounds due to a single event. But for me, a temporary restriction is NOT the answer to my weight problems.  I need a lifestyle change and a temporary change is not going to do the trick.

Diet.......yes, I can look at the word and see it's uses...but I will probably always continue to cringe when I see and hear the word!   A DIET is not for me.  I am here to change my life.  I am here to change the way I think  I am here to build a healthier and more fit lifestyle that will carry me through the rest of my life.   No diet for me!

Wednesday, December 09, 2020

A new Family Member

We have a new family member...but let me introduce you to my full family!

Obviously there is Jadon and I!

We have Mertz the cat.

We have BoBo the Betta fish.

We have three Hermit Crabs (and are contemplating getting one or two more from a hermit crab rescue since we have the room in our terrarium and it would be no extra work!)

And over this past weekend we added a new member to our family.

As yet the new member is unnamed.

Yes, we got a high Red green Cheek Conure.   Mertz is very curious about the bird...but doesn’t seem ready to attack.  But we are watching and working to get her trained and able to live harmoniously with a bird.   The bird...makes it difficult because we are pretty sure that he is trying to antagonize her!  (He just wants to be friends!)

Welcome to the family Mr. Birdy!

Monday, December 07, 2020

Weigh in time

It is time for my weekly weigh in and I was quite nervous about the results!  How in the world was I going to do!   I gained a bit of weight over thanksgiving and at the beginning of this weigh in week I was still struggling with that weight gain!

I watched my weight all week long and I was worried! Really worried because it was hovering at the higher number for the first part of the week. I didn’t waver in my commitment.  I didn’t let the scales derail me!  I just stayed consistent and steady in my efforts.   

The scales didn’t budge....until the day before my official weigh in!  Could it be???  Could I actually show a loss for the week?   

I stepped on the scales this morning and I couldn’t believe my eyes!   I was down by two full pounds!   I have officially lost the thanksgiving weight gain and even a bit more!     My weekly average shows me up by 0.15 pounds....but that’s ok!   

I am worried about this week!   I only work three days...then I am off on Thursday for my birthday.  I will spend that day with my mom (As long as everyone is healthy my uncle who lives next door to her has Covid...she wasn’t in contact with him for the two weeks prior...but..... ). Then on Friday Jason is off work so we will do something fun I am sure.    Follow that with the normal weekend.     And as I have written on here so many times...weekends are my difficult times!!!  So a four day weekend for me!  But I can do it!  I will make the best choices that I can and go into the long weekend planning to be healthy!!!

I’ve got this!!!!

Friday, December 04, 2020

Do Not Try

Do not TRY in your weight loss journey!  It's not the way to go!  No, I have not gone insane. I do not want you to use the word try!  I want you to actually eradicate that word from your weight loss vocabulary...and maybe even your life as a whole! Try is not a word that you want to use.

First of all lets look at the word try and think about it.  If someone asks you to go to dinner with them and your answer is 'I will try."  That is not a very committed answer.  You are saying something along the lines of 'I kind of want to but I kind of don't want to.  Maybe I will, maybe I won't."   Basically, you are giving yourself an out to not do it!   What? You are hedging the bets so that you can exert your own will and do what you want right?

Weight loss is similar.  If you say "I'm going to try to lose weight,"  What are you really saying?  You are saying, I may or may not put in the effort, it kind of depends on my mood at that critical moment.  I will try to make a good healthy decision, but there is definitely no guarantees!   You see, the word try is not making any sort of commitment!   It is a half hearted attempt to possibly, maybe, kind of sorta do something.  And let me tell you I don't want someone working for me that is only half heartedly working on something!   I want full commitment!  

Try is in no way a form of commitment and this weight loss journey needs commitment.  A weight loss journey needs us to say I WILL make healthy decisions and choices.  I WILL work out.  I WILL do what I need to do in order to live a healthy life.   We need commitment.....and for that reason I will no longer be trying.  I will be doing!

Thursday, December 03, 2020

Monthly Goal Check in

 So here we are at the beginning of December!  Where did that month go???   I had my goals in place and I worked on them.  But how did I REALLY do???

Tr  Goal #1 Track every bite of food.   I did absolutely awesome on this goal!  I nailed it and tracked each and everything that I ate!!!  No slip ups on this one!!!  

     Goal #2 Save money.  I was able to put extra money into the car payment AND increase the savings by a bit!  So I call this a total win!!!

3.     Goal #3  Weigh Less I don’t care what I weigh at the end of the month as long as it is less then I weigh at the beginning of the month.  A hair less works!  And that is kind of what I did.  I lost 1.8 pounds for the month.  I would have loved it to be more, but I'll take it!  A loss is a loss!!!

 G  Goal #4    Be active at least 4 times a week. This was pretty easy to get.  We walk every day after work so that satisfies the goal.  I also completed yoga quite a bit due to my Yog-vember Challenge.  Every day for the first two weeks of the month....and then the third week I completed 5 days and the last week of the month I completed 2 or 3 days (I honestly can't remember if it was 2 or three!)  So I nailed this one also!!!!  

      Goal # 5  Keep my eating in line at least 6 days a week.  I did great with this for the first three weeks of the month.  I even managed to do well over Thanksgiving.  And then I fell apart for the last couple days of the month!   GRRRRRR  

      Goal #6  Step count.  I know that they recommend 10,000 steps a day.  I would love to get that.  I do the average of all of my steps for the month and I SQUEEKED this month out!  It was TIGHT!  BUt I made it!!!

      So there you have my month in review.  It wasn't all bad.  I had some successes in there!  I also had some failures learning opportunities!  My goals remain the same for the next month and I plan on kicking butt this month!  I want to close out the year strong!!!

Monday, November 30, 2020

Post Holiday Weigh in

It is time to face the music for my post holiday weigh in.  I don’t want to, but I know I have to. I don’t want to see what I weighed in at for my official thanksgiving holiday weigh in.  But my official weigh in day here goes!

I was strong for those first days of the week!  I stayed with my normal routines and habits and did great!  I worked up a plan for my thanksgiving day!  I knew that I wouldn’t be bubbling as I prepared food!   I knew that I was only going to have one plate of food.  I also knew that I was going to eat primarily vegetables...and splurge on the stuffing (which is what I wanted most for that meal!).   I nailed my plan!   I calculated my calories and I absolutely nailed Thanksgiving Day!!!

We got out and hiked and explored a bit over the weekend.  We went to the Monterey Pass’s in Blue Ridge Summit, PA.  I never knew about this battlefield.  So it was interesting!!!!

I was also off work on Friday.  Jason had to work so I went back to Hagerstown to visit my family....where there was a lot of leftovers.   I didn’t go into that day with a plan.  I already mentioned that I was so looking forward to the stuffing...there was more stuffing on Friday!  I also had been really looking forward to the turkey salad that we made with the leftovers.    I had some at my house before I went to Hagerstown...I ate some more for a second breakfast at my mom’s house and I ate more for lunch with my leftovers.  I just fell apart totally!!!

The weekend was a normal weekend of eating...but on Sunday I was so hungry.   I’m not sure why!  But I was and I ate too much that day also!

So I was worried about my weigh in!  Rightfully so!  I gained 1.6 pounds!   Grrrrr. My average weight for the week (my weight from every day added together and divided to give myself a true picture of my weeks efforts). I dropped 0.2 .   So I can take comfort in that....

It was one day.  And I know that.  But I am concerned. My birthday and a long weekend is only 2 short weeks away....and Christmas is only 4 weeks away.  My birthday I should be able to do ok on...but Christmas...yikes!   But this is life.  Life and weight loss don’t make for an easy journey.  I’m not giving up!  So I will weather the storms and move forward regardless...and learn from my mistakes!!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

What a rough week

It is weigh in time again and I was so not ready for this weigh in!   Could I skip it??? I didn’t want to see the results because I fully expected a gain!  It was in the cards!     But skipping isn’t a valid option so I faced the music and weighed myself anyway!!!

My week of eating
I did good with  my eating.  I stayed right where I needed to be with my food intake!  I kept my calories in a nice range and a range that is conducive to losing weight (for my body!).    I am happy with my eating and feel in control and on top of that.  It’s not always easy, but I’m feeling good!

Exercise through the week
I managed to get in a couple session on the exercise bike.  Jason and I walked after work every day but one (he was having issues with his foot so we took a break that one day!).   We got some walking in over the weekend also.   I also managed 5 days of yoga.  I could have bumped up some of the intensity level...but I was active!!! As evidenced by my calories and expenditures on exercise chart!!!

Nervous about my weigh in

So why was I nervous about my weigh in?   I was nervous because ok the first day of my weigh in my weight popped up by 2 pounds and it hovered at a higher weight ALL. WEEK. LONG.  Talk about frustrating!   It’s maddening to be doing what is right and see the opposite results on the scales.   

I took some comfort in the fact that the monthly scourge came to visit and I hoped that the weight would right itself at some point, but as days passed and my weight remained high I was feeling hopeless!  Yet I held on and stayed strong.

My weigh in results
When I tell you that I didn’t want to weigh in, let me be clear.  I really did not want to weigh in!  But I stepped on the scales.  I was so shocked when I saw the number!   I had an absolute even maintain!  What? How?    

I am not going to look a gift horse in the mouth.   I’m taking it and I'm running with it!   I at Chinese food the night before the weigh in so I am double shocked...and halfway expect the weight to pop again...but I am drinking my water to counter act that sodium! 

So this week I am moving forward.  The results on the scale didn’t change that mission at all.  This journey is Kanpur moving forward no matter what the scales do! And that is just what my plan is!!!  Moving forward!!!

Monday, November 23, 2020

Weight Loss Questions

 Last week I was tagged on youtube to answer some questions about my weight loss journey!  I had a blast with it and decided to share the questions here.  So I tag everyone that is reading this to turn around and answer the same questions on your posts!!!  I want to hear your answers!  Let me know in the comments if you do so I can go check out your answers!!!!

1. What is the reason for your weight loss? I started to lose weight way back when and my deep dark reason was to make my then husband love me in the way that I needed to be loved.  It didn't work.  I lost the weight and my marriage was just as crappy as it was before I lost the weight.  I also started to regain, mainly because I had lost it for the wrong reasons.    This time around I am working to lose this for me! I am wanting to lose weight for MY health....for MY future!  I want to by 80 and still hiking and riding a bike!

2. What pitfalls have you come across that have made your weight loss unsuccessful?  The biggest pitfall for me is that I slip up and then feel so mad and depressed that I turn to food for comfort.  That only compounds my issues which in turn makes me eat more!  The biggest pitfall for me is that vicious cycle and stopping that cycle!

3. What are your favorite meal ideas for weight loss? I don't have any favorite meals for weight loss.  I have in the past made only weight loss meals.  But this time around I am cooking normally.  I just try to use lean meats, lots of vegetables, lots of fruits and healthy grains!!!   My biggest thing is portion control.  Eat normally (even at a restaurant) But control my portions!

4. What are your favorite exercises?  I don't like exercise!  Plan and simple!  I don't like it!  BUt that said, I do enjoy biking and hiking.  I enjoy them best when we are out exploring something new and unique.  The hike at Fort Ritchie were we were exploring inside of old buildings was amazing...I forgot I was walking and climbing and whatnot!.  Likewise with the hike at the Browns Farm....I was so busy looking and learning that I forgot I was exercising!  So in essence, my favorite exercise is the exercise where I forget that I am exercising!!!!!

5. How do you stay motivated?  I stay motivated by remembering why I am doing this!   I can feel the aches and pains from my obesity and they actually spur me to lose the weight!  I don't want to be 80 and not able to walk!  I want to be hiking and enjoying life when I am 80!  To do that,  I need to turn this ship those aches and pains keep me motivated!

6. How do you celebrate your success?  I have celebrated in a lot of different ways over the year.  It depends on the time and place and where I am in life.  Money was super tight at one point so celebrating was difficult.  The biggest thing that I did was to learn to celebrate with something NON food related!  That was the hardest lesson.  I would think reward and immediately my mind went to food.  I refuse to reward myself with food.  That is just feeding the issue that brought me to this point!   I am toying with doing the charm bracelet again!  That is where I bought a pandora charm bracelet and bought a new charm every 10 pounds that I lost.  I would buy a charm that signified a milestone or event during that 10 pounds.  IT was a great tangible way to remind myself of my journey.

7. Have you got an overall goal?  I would love to get back to 180.  That was my doctor recommended weight.  That is where I was maintaining at my lowest!  Whenever I dipped below that people commented about how sick I looked.  SO my goal is 180.  From there, we will see how I I look....what the doctor says!

8. Do you follow any weight loss accounts on social media, if so which ones?  I am skipping this one!  I read ya'lls blogs.  I follow some on FB....I follow people on Youtube.  way too many too count and name!

9.  Where do you buy your workout clothes?  Where ever I can find ones that fit and that I like....oh and a good price too!  I've bought workout clothes at Target, Penneys ,Goodwill and Amazon to name a few.  I just recently purchased three hiking pants from them!

10. What advice would you give to any weight loss newbies?  Know that you will make mistakes.  Forgive yourself for your slip ups and get right back on the wagon immediately.  If you say "next monday...or tomorrow' that day may never come!   Forgive yourself and move on!!!!!!

So there you have it!  I hope that you enjoyed my answers...and I would love to know YOUR answers!!!!!!

Friday, November 20, 2020

Plans for the Holiday Meal

 I have a video planned for my youtube channel where I talk about how to navigate a holiday meal.   Thanksgiving to be specific.  (It should be live right now if you want to go to my channel and check it out.)  It gives all sorts of tips for navigating this weight loss land mine.  I have some great tips in there, if I do say so myself.  Furthermore, they are tips that I have personally used, so I know that they can work!   But what is my plan for the holiday meal this year?

I am going with version of a plan that I used a few years back.    In 2018 I decided that I was going to challenge myself to staying on track for the holiday meal.  I set up four rules.

1. Exercise
2. No bites licks or tastes while cooking (all food must be eaten off a the table)
3.  One plate/serving
4.  Picture of plate of food

IT worked for me, however the picture of my food was kinda awkward because I wanted to enjoy my family and not be pulling out my phone to take pictures of my plate.  But I did it.   So this year is going to be more of the same...with the exception of the picture.   I don't need a picture!

1. Exercise
2. No bites licks or tastes while cooking (all food must be eaten off a plate and at the table)
3.  One plate/serving....second helpings are not to be eaten!

Will I manage it?  I don't know.  But I DO know that I have to go into the holiday with a plan!  I am on a downward trend.  I have been in control of my eating and I want it to remain that way!  I do NOT want the holiday to derail me or even delay me in my progress!  

I have successfully navigated holidays before, I can do it again!   

What are YOU doing to get through the holiday?  If you don't have a plan....I challenge you to make one!!!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Weekly weigh in

We had a good week!   I had a good week!   I feel that I did some great work on myself over the past week!  

I am doing great with my Yogvember challenge!  I set a goal to challenge myself to do yoga consistently in the month of November.  My challenge was to complete yoga at least three days a week.   I am proud to announce that with half of the month of November completed that I have done yoga each and every day this far!   Now admittedly some of these days were short 10 minute sessions.  Or rather under 10 with Adriene on YouTube had some short under 10 minute sessions that I have utilized. Most days are 20-30 minutes though!  The reason I’m ok with short’s the consistency!   I think about edit each day!  It’s becoming a routine and a habit!

My eating has been really good!  Most days were right at the 1200-1300 calorie mark that I’m aiming for.  Over the weekend I did have a few days of 1500 calorie days.  But never more than 1500!    It is crazy how in control I feel!  Yes,  I feel grounded and in control and I love that feeling.  It’s hard to describe...because it’s just part of who I am, but I can look at the very recent past and see that weird feeling of frenzy I had when I was not in control of my eating.   It’s so much more calming and good to feel in control.  

So how did I do this week?

Last week I weighed 245.8 pounds and this week I weighed in at 244.0 pounds.  That is a loss of 1.8 pounds.     My average weight for last week was 246.32. And this week it was 245.175.    That means that my average weight is trending downward!    So success the whole way around!!!

Monday, November 16, 2020

Let’s look at the Average

I am a daily weigher!  I know, I know.  People tell me not to do it.  They say it messes with my’s not a healthy thing to do...yada yada yada. But for me it works!   I have weighed every day for years!   When I don’t weigh I worry about my weight.  Sometimes when I don’t weigh I get off’s easier to get off track and gain weight when not confronted with the numbers.   It keeps me on track.

But while I know that for my personality that weighing every day is a good thing for me, I’m not gonna lie.  Sometimes seeing the numbers on the scale drive me crazy!   There is natural fluctuation and it is annoying as all get out!  It’s maddening to see my weight drop low but then tow days later pop up high only to dive low again.   I have been able to identify some events and foods that cause those events that occur on the scales.  But it still makes me quite aware that the scales are not the best measurement in losing weight.  The weigh day may be one of those crazy up days....maybe I’m lucky and it is one of those awesome low days.  I try to manipulate it so that it’s low.   And manipulate I say I try to not eat foods high in sodium, I try to limit my carbs the day before...etc!

A few years back I instituted what I called my ‘it’s ok until’plan.   Basically this plan gave me the freedom to fluctuate on the scales because as long as I was within three pounds from my lowest official weight I was ok!!!  In theory it worked for me really well!  Ok, it worked when I was losing!   But during this past year of struggles I started to gain.  So when I said ‘I’m within three pounds of my last weigh in, I’m ok!   And then two weeks later I would say ‘I’m within 3 pounds of my weigh in two weeks ago, I’m fine!’   But I wasn’t fine because I was using my most recent weight as my ‘it’s ok as long as I’m three pounds from there’ number!   I kept pushing that weight up...I was always within three pounds so i was doing great!  Right????  No!  I gained 19 pounds that way!

So I am starting a new plan!  Since I weigh every day I am going to add  all of my weekly weigh in numbers and divide them to get my weekly average.   The average should give me a much clearer picture of my efforts.  If it goes up...that tells me that for most of the week of the week I was likely not on track!  But if the number gets smaller each week, then I know that even with those crazy days when my weight pops up on the scales and threatens to frustrate didn’t make a difference!  They were just that, a total random fluctuation due to water consumption or monthly hormones or whatever!

The average weight is the true determining factor of my weight loss.   I can’t manipulate the whole week by fasting before a weigh in, skipping sodium, limiting carbs or any number of those tricks that if we want to admit we all do!  The week average is the TRUE judge!!!

So starting this next weigh in you will see my weekly weigh ins AND my average weight weigh loss.   So get ready!!!!

Friday, November 13, 2020

A fun weekend and lots of activity

 This past weekend we had a fabulous time out and about in nature!   We hiked on Saturday for about 3-4 hours and we explored an old military base for about 3 hours.  It was a good active weekend and I it was the perfect way to get in exercise!

Browns Farm Trail:  Catoctin Mountain National Park

We started on Saturday by driving up to the Catoctin Mountain National Park.  I had researched a trail that I wanted to visit and an overlook that I had never been to (that I remember).   I was gung ho!   As we wound up the mountain and into the park property, I began to get a sinking pit in the bottom of my stomach.  There were cars EVERYWHERE.  Every little pull off had cars stacked up every which way parked.  It was insanity. As we got closer to the park visitor center and the road that we would be turning off on the amount of cars increased.  It was wall to wall people!  We turned onto the road that would take us to the parking lot at the trail head that I had planned to hike.  There were Park Police out directing traffic!  What the……..   Luckly it was just to control the mad amount of people that were visiting the park.  And even more happily, I had no run in with the police during this visit like I did a previous visit!

We drove carefully and cautiously through the swarms of people.  I was hopeful that the parking lot where we were heading would be a little less crowded.  After all, it was a mile or two from the visitor center.  But no.  It was jam packed!  No thank you!  I like a little peace and quiet when I hike.  I don’t want to be shoulder to shoulder in a crowd!  We drove on.  The next parking lot was busy also!  We were starting to think that we would have to ditch our plans to hike at Catoctin.  But I started to notice that the further out we went, the less people.  You see, there aren’t as many fabulous overlooks further into the park and that deters a lot of people. Not us!   We went to one of the furthest parking lots and there was plenty of parking. We hit up some trails off of that parking lot and we had a fabulous time!     Now don’t get me wrong, there were still people.  But it was a manageable amount!  I would estimate that we only see people once every mile of our hike.  Ahhhhhhhhhhh nature at last!

We even had time to stop and explore an old grave yard after our hike!!!

Fort Ritchie

On Sunday we woke up and we just didn’t know what we were going to do.  What to do?  Where to go?  I don’t know what sparked me to remember Fort Ritchie, but it came to my mind.  I had always known about it and had always had some vague idea that this was a decommissioned army base and that there were a lot of empty buildings.  But I knew nothing about it other than that.  I mentioned it to Jason and he was all for it!

Boy were we surprised.  The county uses it as a park and there is a community center and a lake on the property.  The lake is man made and was created in the late 1800’s by an ice company to cut ice and sell in Baltimore and Washington DC.  In the 1920’s the property was developed into a training camp for the Maryland National Guard.  In the 1940’s, during the war the control of the property transferred to the U.S. Army where it became a military intelligence Training Center.    Fort Ritchie closed it’s doors in 1998 and the future of the property has been questionable.   In the meantime, it was a fabulous place to walk around and explore! 

We were able to see the outside of a lot of old buildings.  Many of the buildings were locked with the windows boarded over.  But some of the buildings had previously been broken into and were open.  We did not break anything but if it was open and available we entered.  It was neat to imagine what went on within the walls of these old buildings!


After Fort Ritchie, we made the 2 mile drive and checked out the overlook at the PenMar park and drove up to High Rock.  We did not stay at High Rock Long, it was insane the amount of people that were there.  We inspected the view from the top of the rock and then retreated.  There was no way to enjoy the serenity of the view when there were so many people jostling and yelling.   This site has the most awesome view, but it is also one that saddens me the most.  The graffiti covering these mammoth rocks is atrocious.  People have no respect for nature and it is sickening what they are doing.   I had read a while back that volunteers had worked to remove much of the graffiti.  You couldn’t tell! I tried to get a good picture but there were so many people......  So instead, enjoy the view from Pen Mar park!

We had a great time over the weekend.  We were out and about.  We were exploring.  We were moving and active. I couldn’t be more than happy with my activity over the weekend and of course the cool things we saw!

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Changing my weigh in day and the Results

We had a great weekend!   We went hiking and we expired an abandoned military base.  We enjoyed the weather greatly...more on that in a later post though.  Because I have to share my weigh in results!!!

So last week I made a decision to change my weigh in day!  My plan was to stop weigh in in on Friday.   You see, when I would weigh in on Friday I would kind of (or really I did) give myself a pass to have a cheat day on Friday.  Then the cheat day turned into Friday and Saturday.  And once I had gone as far as two cheat day...well Sunday was the weekend also!  Might as well make it a trifecta!

This was bad!  Each week I was gaining over the weekend and then trying, often in vain to recover during the week.  Some weeks I was lucky and recovered but more often then not I was gaining...just a half pound here and a half pound there...but i was never losing!  So I had to change my weigh in day to keep myself accountable over the weekend!   

Monday was my first weigh in on a Monday!

All week long I had been doing my yoga.  I had ridden the exercise bike on my lunch breaks.  We had walked after work.  There was hiking and long walking.  I hadn’t been a total slug!  

I kept my food in line all through the weekend.  I did splurge on a dessert on Friday...but it was accounted for and planned for!  All was well.   I admit though, I was worried!  I wanted a loss so bad!

So I stepped onto the scales and I was almost afraid to look down at the numbers.  But...of course I did!!!!

I lost 1.2 pounds.   Thank heavens!  A loss!!!  I was so relieved to see a loss!   Sure I wanted a big loss but that wasn’t in the cards for me.   And honestly, 1.2 pounds is nice and respectable!   No complaints!!!

I’m staying strong and I’m not letting, walking, excessive bike, calories in check....I’ve got this and I’ve got my eyes on another loss next week!!!

Monday, November 09, 2020

Creating a To Do list to Stay Focused


I have implemented a new addition to my life and I am loving it!   I have reinstitute a to do list in my life.  I know...that seems a bit overkill doesn’t it?  But it’s working for me!!!

The impetus behind a To Do list

Last week I talked about my goals for the month of November. And while I am confident that I can meet those goals, I wanted to have something in place to make sure that I meet and even exceed those goals!  But I know myself.  I start strong and then I fade away for a week or two and then I get all bold and string again.  There is a total lack of consistency and it shows in my weight loss efforts, my productivity, my dollhouses, my life.  I needed something to draw me in and give me structure!

I also wrote last week about the having a bucket list of things that I want to do and accomplish in life.  I created that list and I’m excited about it!   In that post I talked about how I have to decide if I really want to do it or if I just want to dream about those things. But how could I make sure that I actually work on the list?

The to do list idea came around quite naturally.  On Monday of last week I was in the shower and thinking about everything I wanted and needed to do that day.  I had a YouTube video to film.  I had one video to edit.  I had a blog post to write.  I had some household chores and oh yeah, I had to squeeze in my yoga session. Afterall, it is Yogvember!    I didn’t want to spend all evening on that stuff.  I like my evenings to be spent with Jason.  I’m in a relationship with him because I like spending time with him, not because I want to always be doing my own thing on my end of the couch!   So I decided to write down my stuff that I needed to do so that I could work on it!!  Not only did I write my list, I took great pleasure in crossing off completed items!   That simple act made me remember my old to do list!

For years I kept a running to do list.   It was just one large long list of things that I wanted to do.   Some things were put on the list and crossed off quickly while other things sat and languished on the list for months.   I would cross off completed items and whenever I had to turn the page I would move all the unfinished things to the new page and start a new list.  It worked for me and I work well with that small reward of seeing crossed off items on my list!   I loved the memory and I wanted to turn that into something awesome for my current life! 

Breakdown of my To Do List 

I am not creating one long list. I am creating a daily to do list.  There are some things that I am putting on the list each and every day.  Some of those items are :  track my food, cardio workout, yoga, devotions, etc.   of course there are things that are just a one day day I had a note to order vitamin drink packets from Amazon.     The daily list is working great!  I don’t beat myself up if something doesn’t get done (most most days everything does get done because I take great glee in crossing items off). BUt if something doesn’t get done I just move it to the next day and carry on.

 On the weekends I don’t have such a strict daily list of things to do.  I have the weekend lumped into one page.         I am simply marking down those items that we randomly say through the week but then forget when the weekend comes.   As you can see, I do have the yoga and food tracking listed there for each day of the weekend because they are things that I really want to continue through the weekend!

I have also included and created a weekly to do list.  This includes the posting schedule for my blogs and my YouTube channels.  It is also where I am placing those long term to do items.  If I have time to work on those things, awesome!  If not I will just move it to the next week!

I am amazed at how productive this had made me this week!  I have managed to get so much done!  I have completed projects and tasks that get pushed aside and/or forgotten.   I feel in top of things and not stressed out.  And I feel so full of pride when I cross an item off the list because it is completed!  I decided that I want the life that I dream about and that I will do whatever it takes to get it!   For me, a to do list keeps me focused on working on my goals each and every day!

Friday, November 06, 2020

More to Life

“There has to be something more to life than this?”   That is a line that I say quite frequently.  There has to be something more than the existence of waking up, getting ready to go to work, spending your day working then going home so tired (physically, mentally or both) that the evening is just trying to recover and recoup for the next day.   We talk about this quite frequently.  We are utterly and totally happy with our relationship (and without that I can’t even imagine how I would be feeling).   However, we spend our days working hard to make someone else rich while we take home a simple (yet adequate) paycheck and quite possibly be wondering if there is something more.

Jason and I haven’t figured out the answer to our question that “there has to be something more” yet……but I stumbled upon a book that made a lot of sense I regards to this question.  The book is called The Art of Non Conformity: Set your Own Rules, Live the Life you want and Change the world and is written by ChrisGuillebeau. (Amazon Link)  How could I not read that book with a title like that!    

The first chapters were kept repeating the same dissatisfaction that I have with my life.  The writer even used the same phrase “there has to be something more.”  Now don’t get me wrong.  We both have employment ….we are ok in that regards.  I am helping patients obtain a medication that they need.  So, there is a small sense of satisfaction there.  But there is just dissatisfaction with the fact that I work and with the commute (when I’m in the office) and the actual work day, I am gone from home for at least 11 hours.  By the time I add in sleep, showering and personal hygiene, cooking dinner, laundry and household chores, my day is over.  For five days a week my life is work and pretty much nothing else. Thus, the dissatisfaction.  As I read the first chapters of this book, I knew that I was not alone!

The next couple chapters were the eye-opening chapters for me.  They were eye opening because of a concept that the write was expounding.  It is a very simple concept also.   The writer wrote about two people that he spoke to.  Two people that wanted a life of freedom.  The one person that he spoke to was all gung ho to minimalize his life.  He was all set to sell his car, pare down his belongings, quit his job and take of on a lifetime of adventure and freedom. (Obviously with a financial plan in place.)  The writer of this book talked about how he felt the excitement of this person but how he was sure that it was ‘all talk’ and that if/when he ever saw this person again that the ‘dreamer’ would still be driving his expensive car and living the same humdrum  existence even though the dreamer had expressed how dissatisfied he was and how bad he wanted it!    You see, this apparently happens to the writer of the book all the time after presentations that he makes.  He spoke about a man that he talked to after a presentation….who he saw each year for the next 4 years or so.  That person was always so excited and ready to make the changes.  However, the each consecutive year when he saw the person again nothing would ever have changed.  BUT…that first person that he wrote about, the one that said he was selling his car?  When the writer saw him a year later he had done it!  That guy had done it all and was living the life he wanted.

You see….it’s easy to TALK.  It’s easy to DREAM.  It’s easy to plan.   But you have to REALLY want it in order to actually do it!  How badly do you want it?  Are you willing to DO or are you just content to dream and complain about what you don’t have?

Now, in terms of giving up my job and finding that financial independence it is a difficult step.  Because most of us just can’t up and leave a job to travel or do whatever the dream is.  But it makes one think about of our dreams.  Are you just dreaming “wouldn’t it be nice to be……?”   Or have you taken the steps to turn those dreams into an actual plan??  “I want to do……… and in order to get to that place in my life I am going to do this….this…and that.” 

Isn’t weight loss the same?  I want to lose weight.  How many times have we said that?  I know for myself that I have said that a multitude of times.  I want this bad.  But am I like the guy who wanted to travel and live financially independent that just talks about it but doesn’t DO it?   Or am I like the guy that wanted it and actually went out and sold his car and quit his job?  What kind of person am I when it comes to weight loss?   What kind of person are you?

I can honestly say that at times during my weight loss journey that I have been a doer.  I want and I do.  But lately I have been more like that second person.  I say I want it and oh, I want it bad!  But when it comes down to actually doing the work to attain my goals, I fall apart and revert to simply being a dreamer.  

Yes, sadly for many years of this blog I have been a dreamer.  I talk and talk and talk about my wants and desires but when it boils down to it, I have been making empty dreams and empty promises to myself.  THAT is not going to get me to my dreams!  That will have me spinning my wheels and going nowhere…. which is exactly what I’ve been doing in the last few months!   It is time to enact on my dreams.  It is time to stop making only half-hearted attempts. It is time to get this weight off once and for all!

This book, The Art of Non Conformity was an eye opening.  Yes, it makes me want to take steps to be financially independent from a 9-5 in the office job (and I’m pondering options and thoughts that may make it possible….working up some plan, because we do still need to have an income to survive).  But more importantly,  it made me sit back and look at myself realistically and I’m finally done simply wanting and dreaming about weight loss and to actually take the steps to achieve my desires!

Wednesday, November 04, 2020

Monthly Goals and Showing Mercy

I can’t believe that it is already November.  This year is flying by!  The last few months have not been easy for me with my weight loss journey.  Not at all.  It has been so ‘weird’ that I haven’t even done a monthly goal post.  I haven’t even thought about my monthly goals and quite honestly in the month of October I blew most of the goals off!  But it is time to talk about those goals and get myself straightened out!

Setting Monthly Goals

When I set my monthly goals, I try to set them with the idea that I will falter and mess up.  I am a human and therefore I will have stumbles upon my journey.  I also know that for me I tend to be an all or nothing.  If I set a goal that I am going to eat perfectly for 7 days a week and I mess up on day one, my tendency is to quit because “all is lost”.  So with that in mind, my goals are more loose and fluid to allow myself the grace and mercy to be human and NOT be perfect.

1     Track every bite of food.   This goal is set to help me stay consistent.  I know that when I track I tend to be more on target with what I eat.  But my goal is to simply track.  It doesn’t matter if I have a day where my calorie count is 6000.  I just need to track it to have the win!

2.      Save money.  This it not strictly a weight loss goal, but it is a life goal.  So I am including it.  Up until recently the goal was to save money. However recently I decided that I will be ok with a set amount in my savings account. If the total dips below that amount I will start dumping money into the savings but I’m not focusing on my savings at the moment.  What AM I focusing on?  Paying off the car!  You see, the car payment has what…3.5% interest (I’m just guessing…my paperwork is buried in files at the moment).  My savings account is earning me a whopping 0.1% interest (once again…guessing…and I think that is a high estimate).  You do the math.  Where is my month best spent?  Shaving off my principal on a loan meaning my interest will be reduced greatly over the years or earning that penny?   And once again, I’m not saying a certain amount.  Sure I would like to at least double my payment each month…but I’m not stressing about it as long as SOMETHING extra is paid!

3.       Weigh less!  I don’t care what I weigh at the end of the month as long as it is less then I weigh at the beginning of the month.  A hair less works!  Would I like it to be 10 pounds?  Or even 5 pounds?  Sure.  But ANY loss is a good one and considered a win!

4.       Be active at least 4 times a week. This is pretty easy to get….or at least it has been.  A simple walk outside with Jason after work suffices.  We do that pretty much every day. (I am not sure how the time change and the darkness that comes with it will affect us though!)   But 4 times a week…for a measly 20 minutes is doable.  I’m not asking for the moon.  I’m asking for just a few times!

5.       Keep my eating in line at least 6 days a week.  There will be events (hello Thanksgiving) and happenings that cause me to eat a bit more.  There are things that happen.  I have to show myself mercy and allow myself to have a day where I can eat more.  That day gives me the wiggle room to have a stumble and still not fail with my goals.  I would rather stumble and say “It’s allowed, so I better pick myself up because I used my one ‘get out of jail free’ pass!”  Versus “I messed up, I may as well eat every piece of chocolate that I see!”  That one day gives me room to mess up!

6.       Step count.  I know that they recommend 10,000 steps a day.  I would love to get that.  HOWEVER, with my lifestyle and work this is difficult.  So I am aiming for 5,000.  And yeah, that’s a struggle.  I allow an average of all the days of the month (and yes, those hikes save my behind many months).  I will also take out any days where I ride the bike instead of hike/walk.  If I’m spending my time doing something active that isn’t earning me steps, it shouldn’t count against me.  That’s my thought at least.  Once again…..grace and mercy!

Those are the standard monthly goals that I carry over from month to month.  And they will be my goals for the month of November for sure.  But November has a special goal.  IT has my Yogvember challenge.   For Yogvember I am challenging myself to at least three days of yoga each week.  Realistically that is my goal.  But I will let you in on a little secret…..I am actually aiming for 7 days a week!!!!

Goals are important.  But we have to make sure that they are attainable. We have to make sure our goals are not something that will actually derail us.   My goals are here….and with the room for stumbles, I’m sure that I can totally nail my goals in November!