Where did I get that outfit? lol

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Another Challenge Done

It's been a busy few weeks for me.  My TOPS convention was last week and it was really good.  My workshop went well and then I talked a bit later on in the day about "regain".  It was mostly what I wrote here a month or so ago.  I got a standing ovation and I found myself really chocked up.  I feel like I've learned a lot of things about myself during this weight loss journey.  I'm starting to think maybe I could help others.  It's not about teaching them about nutrition or exercise though, it's about helping them to learn to love themselves and get rid of guilt and shame and to be happy with where they are right now.  

Funny though that some times I can stand so tall and feel so good about all I've accomplished and then other times I'm feeling like I still have a ways to go. 

I finished another online challenge this past weekend.   Below is the essay I wrote for it.

"Dawn's Final Mile", that's what I titled this thread because I wanted to get to a body I had never seen before, I wanted to "finish".  But as the weeks ticked by I realized that my final mile wasn't going to happen this challenge but I also realized that through these past 6 1/2 yrs and coming from 378 lbs, I've had quite a few detours, gains and pauses and I've learned many lessons along the way.  
 
So what did I learn during this 98 day challenge? 
 
I learned that recovering from an injury is harder than I thought it would be.  Breaking my foot 4 weeks before my marathon was a lesson in patience for me.  I was thankful to get back in the gym even if I'm not 100% back to where I was before the foot. 
 
I learned that asking for help was a good thing, that having that 5th element was a must.  I found the kindness of others 10 fold all along the way. Every person that stopped by to root me on meant something to me. (I feel the same way about the people here in the blogging world too)
 
I learned that nutrition has to be at the top of the list, especially when you're injured and not working out at your best. Through my weight loss I relied on exercise to eat more and I learned through this challenge that tweaking my food and eating within my calorie range was a must.
 
I learned to modify my exercise where need be to create a workout that worked for ME.  I did use Tom's TNB through part of this challenge and found it worked even with my injuries.  
 
I learned staying positive is EVERYTHING!!!
 
I learned nurturing my brain is of the utmost importance.  I definitely grew mentally through this challenge.
 
I also learned that self confidence can come in many ways and helping others is a big part of that.  Speaking at my TOPS convention this year and receiving the love from so many showed me that giving others hope will help me grow into the confident person I'm striving to be not to mention helping others is so rewarding and feels great.
 
I've learned maintaining is winning too.
 
I've definitely learned that I NEED to be proud of who I am and what I have accomplished over time.  Each day is a lesson waiting to be learned. 
 
Today I weigh 1 lb less than what I weighed this time last year finishing up the LYB challenge and I was feeling on top of the world and hoping to win (came in 3rd) so how can I be disappointed in myself to have maintained my weight through having a broken foot and other obstacles this year.  I lost some fat and gained some muscle and though I don't think my pictures look much different the inside of me sure does. I've realized I've just come to far on this journey to beat myself up anymore about anything.  It really is about how we look at things and ourselves and it really is about finding the joy in the journey.  
 
As for my goals from this point forward, boy I'd still love to do that marathon in November and 25% body fat and 155 lbs is still on the horizon Smile
 
But my #1 goal is to love myself each and every day and be so very proud that I've maintained a 200 lbs weight loss for 4 1/2 yrs now. 
 
So for each person reading this know...
 
You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection… - Siddhartha Gautama 

How true is it that we deserve our own love and affection.  I think that is the battle so many of us face, not always giving ourselves the love and kindness that we show others.  

While I've been working with Gary (weightpsychology.com) these past several weeks he's making me realize that for me it's about protecting my weight loss so far not about losing another 25 lbs.  In our first call he asked me to rate my self love from 1 to 10 and I gave myself an 8.  He was surprised my number was that high but I explained that I rate my love for myself how I rate my love of life, my happiness in my life.  We've talked about weight just being a symptom and I think we all know that to be true.  It made me think about when I changed the name of my blog from fixing myself thinner to fixing myself happy. I had finally realized that it really was about making my life all I wanted it to be not about how much I weighed.  

Anyway, I've had a busy but good few weeks.  I'm looking forward to starting to really look at my food more closely with Gary.  Maybe it's a dream but I'd like to think that if I could clean up my food more maybe I could just slowly drift down the scale.  It makes me think of Vickie and how she had a few years pause before losing her final amount of weight.  I do feel like I'm ready for the next step for myself.  But even if I don't lose another lb I'm very happy just as I am.

I took this picture on Saturday and I felt really good about myself :) Then I spent the next few days eating like a crazy woman feeling like I shouldn't have felt good about how I looked, how messed up is that lol.  But I think I will always struggle with that sort of thing.  I don't ever want my outside to change the person I am on the inside because just like I've always told my TOPS people "you aren't your weight".

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Weight Psychology

I feel like I've been quiet so much this past year.  I feel I've done a lot of work on myself though and really opened my eyes to a lot of things this past year. I've always felt bless how through my life people have come along that have helped me.  There have been many pivotal people in this weight loss journey of mine too.  People that have helped push me a bit further along my road of being a better, healthier (mentally and physically) me.  

A few days ago I got an email with the title "The #1 Problem with "Diet Mentality"' of course it peaked my interest so I went in search of the rest of the story.  I found myself on a website called "weight psychology".  I read some of the author's blog posts and I found myself identifying with everything he wrote.  

For some time now I've been wondering about the chemistry of food.  I've not really dug a lot into that side of things as I always thought it was more on the mental side of things that drove me to compulsively eat at times.  But as I've hung around this same weight I'm feeling like there has to be more to the story.  Anyway, I wrote back to the author and in my usual fashion I said how I felt.  I wondered if I sounded snippy, I hoped I wouldn't but as many other fellow bloggers know sometimes you get emails that want to sell you something.

Anyway, I emailed back and forth with Gary and I soon realized he knew his stuff and I wanted to learn more.  Today I got to have a long conversation with Gary and I must say it was a very informative talk and has opened my eyes even more to how complicated weight loss and maintenance is.  There are so many sides to it all that we have to figure out for ourselves if we want to lose weight or even maintain what weight we've lost.  I'm excited about learning more from Gary and hoping to connect some more dots for myself as to why I hold onto these last 20-30 lbs.  

I've always said people come into our lives for a reason and this feels that way to me. 

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

A fly by

Well I really need to get to bed but just felt the need to come and at least post something as I keep promising not to be gone so long.  I'm doing well and feeling much better about everything.  Having peace with food again these days which feels really terrific.  

I had a really really wonderful time with my family.  Seeing my mom and sister was great and then my day with my girlfriend was even better.  Spending time with my niece and grand niece was great too.  I did say all the things I wanted to say to everyone and it just felt so very very good.  I hope that I will get to see everyone more often but no matter when I do now it should be good :)

The kids and I are still volunteering at the cat castle on Saturdays.  I'm still working on Casadia and Nick has found a friend named Charlie, who's a sweet white and orange kitty that arrived 2 weeks ago :) it was too funny, after cleaning on Saturday him and Charlie took a nap on the little kids bed up in the front window, what people must have thought as they passed by lol.  

Kevin is coming to visit this weekend, we haven't seen him since September so will be really nice seeing him and the family.  Haven't seen the little one since New Years either so will be nice to spend some time with her and get to hear "Nanny" all weekend :) 

Work has been a bear, learning the new 3D software has not been easy but I'm making progress and feeling a bit better.  For awhile there I was wishing I could just find something new to do.  Still think about it but for now I'll just stick it out.  After 25 yrs not like I'm going to just up and go anyway lol.  

Mike turned 45 Friday, he's a little younger than me lol.  We just had a nice dinner at home and my co-worker came over and hung out with us.  We played some games and just had a quiet evening at home.  He's back on the weight loss wagon and I'm so happy for him as it seems to make him much happier when he's trying.  

SRD is just 3 weeks away, ekkkk.  I'm doing a workshop and have not finished my presentation yet so I better get a move on.  TOPS tomorrow and I'm hoping for a lose.  For a few weeks there I was self medicating and self punishing and it's such a relief to be back in happy mode.  

Well I really need to get to bed if I plan on making the gym in the morning. 

Till next time...

Sunday, February 23, 2014

5 Miles

I did 5 miles today on my road and it felt TERRIFIC.  I really do think of walking as my therapy.  It wasn't as pretty today or as warm as yesterday when I started but I was determined to get in another walk.  As I got to the top of the second hill the sun came out and I thought "why not" and I did a few stretches and turned around and headed back down the road for another lap.  Goodness how good it felt to be back outside.  It's suppose to turn cold again this week but just knowing there might be some walking days possible here and there makes all the difference to how I've been feeling.  

On the second lap I got thinking about my girlfriend and the tears just started to flow and I thought about how very much I miss her.  I again thought of all the things I want to say to her next week.  I just can't wait to see her.  It really does feel true that absence makes the heart grow fonder.  

I really feel I'm going to have a wonderful visit with everyone next week.  I'm really looking forward to seeing my mom and sister too.  Oh, got a card from my mom yesterday, was perfect timing I thought :) I will call her tonight to thank her.  I know though my family is dysfunctional that we all do love each other.  Even my father has been on my mind lately.  

Well I think I'm off to sweep the back porch so I can sit out and read for awhile, the temps have drifted up to 65 now :) I couldn't ask for a better weekend.

Till next time...

Saturday, February 22, 2014

My Road

I don't know how many times I've wrote about "My Road" but today I just kept thinking about coming here and writing about it.  I got to take my first real walk today since I broke my foot back in October.  Boy how totally wonderful it was.  I found myself welling up with tears of joy to be out in the sunshine walking again.  It was a cool 60 degrees but I was totally loving every minute of it.  I kept wishing I had brought my phone so I could have taken a picture. I'm hoping tomorrow will be another good day before it's suppose to turn cold again so I can take another walk.  It just does my soul so much good to be out on my road :) I couldn't help but keep smiling as I walked and then seeing the Bay was just .... well I can't even describe it :) The ankle still isn't the best and it's feeling pretty stiff now but I think as I walk more and continue to stretch it more it will continue to get stronger.  

I've had a mixed bag of a week, my emotions have been all over the place.  But I know that's normal sometimes as we think far too much about stuff.  I will be seeing my family next weekend.  I'm finally going for the Christmas visit I never took.  My sister's (Kevin's mom) Birthday was yesterday too and so I sent her a card.  I found it harder than I thought to pick a card out for her.  I don't know if we will ever talk again but she continues to send my kids cards so I will continue to send her one on her Birthday.  Hopefully at some point we will find a way to have a relationship again. Growing up she was always the one I was closest too.

I will see my mom, my other sister, my niece and my best friend on this visit.  I haven't seen my best friend since July.  I texted her this week to say I would like to see her and she said she'd love to see me so that's a good sign :) I've missed her greatly and I'm hopeful our break has been healing for both of us.  We are coming up on 38 years of friendship, I just can't imagine life totally without her.  We've had our rocky patches but I will always love her and hope to stay friends even if it's from afar.

Thinking about her this week made me think a lot about friendship and what it means to me.  I really am a forever friend and it's so hard for me to let go.  I guess I don't feel friendships ever have to be let go of even if breaks are taken.  If anything I think it often makes for a better, stronger friendship down the road.  

I've also been thinking about what a good friendship is.  I've not had many friendships as I've always isolated myself.  I've found as I shed the weight I also have allowed myself to open up to new friendships that have been so very meaningful to me over the past several years.  Of course having healthy friendships has also made me realize what a not healthy friendship looks like.  I'd like to think though like I said that any friendship can be made better and stronger with care and true desire to heal any hurt feelings.  I'd like to think I make a pretty good friend :)

I've played over in my head a lot this week what I want to say to my best friend.  Things I should have said to her several years ago when she really needed to hear them.  I feel I've often painted a poor picture of her here as she's often hurt my feelings.  But I think that was just us both not really knowing how to be a good friend, not knowing what a good friendship looked like.  I'm hopeful we've both changed enough in the past few years to be able to dish out just love to each other without judgement or resentment.  
The kids and I went to the cat castle today for our weekly volunteering.  This week it was grumbles from Marie lol.  I thought about letting her off the hook but then I decided to stick to my guns and make her go.  After we got there she had a good time and didn't mind working or hanging with the kitties.  As for Casadia, I found out she's been with them 9 yrs, so I don't think I'm going to win her over quickly.  But I'm not giving up on her.  I'm going to keep trying and hoping.  She was more nervous today I think because there were more small children there.  But after I left her room she got in the chair I was sitting in and laid there so I think that's a good sign.  I'm going to try to find some stuff online about feral cats and maybe get some tips.  She wouldn't take treats from my hand today but she enjoyed the can cat food I gave her so I will continue trying bribery lol.  

My fitness this week has been pretty good, 4 weight lifting workouts but not much cardio.  Need to work on fitting more in.  Hopefully if the weather warms up I will be able to get more walking in which will definitely help.  Food has been a mixed bag.  My emotions being what they've been I've used food some this week but just trying to be kind to myself and not beat myself up over it.  

Got my haircut yesterday, picked a new style for myself and it really made me feel good :) I have to keep reminding myself it's the little things and self care that can make all the difference in how I'm feeling about myself.

Till next time...

Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Cat Castle and Peace With Food

Well our volunteer work just boosted me right up today.  Nick complained the whole way there and I thought "goodness I sure hope he doesn't start torturing me every week" lol but shortly after we got there his mood turned right around and he worked without complaint and then truly enjoyed his time with the cats.  We were a terrific team again this week with our other lady and finished all the scrubbing, scooping, cleaning in just about a hour so then we just got to hang with the kitties.  I had brought floor cleaners, litter, food, trash bags, treats, etc for the kitties so plan on doing that once a month.  We heard great news too that the little kitty that had been there 12 yrs got a new home this week, how cool is that :) it just made me so happy.  Casadia was a bit warmer towards me too.  I still can't pet her but she ate treats from my fingers and seemed to enjoy my company in "her room" so I'm hopeful next week maybe I will get to pet her, I'm taking it slow :) 

As for food today, well I had a great day :) no "using" and I had peace again.  My plan is to start a "streak" for myself by counting the days I can stay in my calorie range.  

Tomorrow morning I plan on going to the gym for a good weight lifting/cardio workout then Mike and I are going to lunch and then to the grocery to shop for the week.  I'm hoping he will go to the gym with me in the morning but I'm not going to push.  I'm just hopeful he can get back on track with food too.  He hasn't been going to TOPS with me either so I'm hoping he will go Wednesday, we will see.  

I made a triple batch of protein bars today as I plan on taking a batch for my girlfriend who has also been struggling the past few weeks.  She has invited Mike and I over for dinner on Monday so thought I'd take her a gift :) 

My oldest sister and I have played phone tag the past 2 weeks so I finally got to talk to her today.  It was a good chat with her and I hope to go see her and my mom in a few weeks.  It made me feel good to hear her say that though we don't talk much that she thinks of us often and I told her the same.  It will be good to see her and my mom, it has been a long time.  

I'm grateful for so many things, life is good, I think the funk is lifting.  It also feels good to be posting again :)

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Happy Valentine's Day!!! 

Hard to believe it's already February.  I know I haven't been posting much in the past year, but I'm missing it here so going to try to start writing more (I know I've said that before lol).  I've had several ups and downs in these past several months.  The broken foot was a big blow and not getting to walk my marathon. I was pretty low there for awhile so I was thankful to find my trainer who helped pull me out of my funk and helped get me back in the gym even when I was in the boot.  Sadly he's had to drop me as a client as he's spread himself thin and since I wasn't really paying him I did understand that part.  But the fat girl in my head still took it personally and I've found myself falling in another mental hole the past week punishing myself with food for being so needy.  

I know not everyone can be there forever trying to keep me uplifted and moving forward.  I know that keeping myself uplifted and happy is 100% my job and through my weight lose I relied on myself a lot so I will just find my groove again and continue moving forward.  I also know that sometimes people come into our lives for a reason and leave just as quickly as they came.  There was definitely purpose in our friendship and I will be forever grateful.  Hopefully he will have fond memories of me and not just think I was a big pain in his butt lol. 

I guess what has thrown me in a hole and affected me the most is the thought of it being so final.  I've always been the type I like the thought of my friends still being there down the road even if we've parted ways somewhat.  But I know for now I just need to let it go, let it go Dawn. I wish I had an easier time of letting go especially when I have no control over the situation. 

I've been out of the boot since January 20th.  The foot is totally healed and not giving any trouble.  It's my ankle that is actually the trouble these days.  I got some stretches from the doc so been doing those and stuff at the gym to help strengthen it so it is improving.
 
I'm trying to figure out how to move on with my fitness now but I'm sure I will be fine.  I've been on my own with fitness all these years so I will just continue to teach myself the best I can.  I had hopes to drop these last 20 lbs in the next few months while I'm doing my online contest but honestly I'm starting to question is it really what I want for myself.  I'm pretty content where I'm at and with my level of food and fitness.  I think a part of me will always want to drop that last 20 just to see if I can.  But will it make me a better person, a happier person, a more content person?  Honestly I think it will just make it harder for me to maintain my weight and I sure know I don't want to fall into beating myself up over not being able to stay there. 
 
So my plan is to work hard these next 8 weeks for my online challenge and see what I can do but not kill myself.  My level of cardio compared to before the broken foot is pretty pitiful.  My plan is to continue with my focus being on weight lifting but I also know if I want to actually drop some weight I have to put in more cardio time.  My trainer had me doing a combination of both and I have been liking that so think I will stick with it just modifying the weight lifting exercises to suit. 
 
Mike sent me a dozen roses yesterday in a beautiful ceramic vase with hearts all over it.  The card said "Love you. I don't know what I'd do without you" and I feel the same way.  He's a good man and I will be forever grateful that he feel in love with me and has loved me through so much stuff.  I wish I could help him feel better about himself.  I wish he could realize that he's not his weight, that he's good enough just as he is :) I wish I was a better wife, he deserves better than me.  I feel very lucky. He said he would start fresh come Monday and get back to the gym so I'm hopeful he will get feeling more confident again.
 
So Nick got his report card, 5 F's :( of course Mike and I felt like failures.  But we've talked about it and we are leaving school in Nick's hands.  I feel like we've tried many things and so he keep telling me "I've got this mom" so I'm hopeful he does. I never even went to high school and I turned out ok so I know he will be fine too no matter what happens.  He's got a good soul and I have faith he will find his way eventually.   Hopefully he can manage to pass the 11th grade. 
 
Then there is Marie, who made the honor roll :) I know sometimes she feels like the neglected one since it seemed we went from drama with Kevin to drama with Nick but eventually it will be her turn to be in the spot light and she assures us we won't have to worry lol.  Of course we hope that's true but then we all know what it's like to be a teenager :)

 
A few weeks back I gave Nick the option of therapy or volunteer work and he picked volunteer work so last weekend we started working at the "Cat Castle", our local cat shelter.  We all loved it and Nick kept saying how he wished he had known about it when he was doing community service back in the summer as it's so much easier than what he had to do lol. But we did work hard for the kitties and I was proud of us for being such a great team. There was another woman that was a new volunteer that just fit right in with us and we all worked terrific together and got the place all cleaned in no time flat, we scrubbed floors, cleaned boxes, beds, bowls, etc. Then we got to spend some time with the kitties :) Most of the ones there are tough to place kitties so not the friendliest as they send those over to Petco for quicker placement. One poor little kitty has been with them for 12 yrs the lady said. Another one, Casadia, I have a mission to befriend her so tomorrow I will bring some treats with me and try to see if I can win her over at least a bit :) I think this is going to be something good for all of us :) We all came home tired though after just 3 hours lol.  


Kevin and his family will be coming to visit for Mike's Birthday in a few weeks, we haven't seen him since September so it will be nice.  It will be great getting to see the little one too :)
 

I had a weekend with my TOPS folks for our planning of our annual convention.  I will be doing a workshop on exercise and nutrition, it should be pretty interesting.  I'm doing it with another of the area captains so at least it won't be all on me :) I think I'm getting less nervous about speaking in front of people.  I also had printed out what I wrote here about "regain" and I will also be reading that at SRD too.  I think most of us have been through a regain or more than one so hopefully it will give the folks something to think about.  The convention isn't till April so I have a bit of time to ease my nerves :)
 
I am so thankful for all you guys that check up on me.  Was nice getting your msgs asking how I've been doing :) always makes me smile and feel good to know I'm thought about.  I'm still reading your blogs regularly just haven't been able to post from the ipad so that's why I haven't commented much.  Need to figure out what's going on with that since that's where I do most of my blog reading.  Mike and I talked the other night and he was saying how I seemed happier when I was blogging and I think he was right :) this has always been the place for me to spill out my heart and I've missed doing that :) 

Saturday, January 11, 2014

An Update and Thoughts on Regain

Well I'm finally here for an update.  I have 8 days left in the boot (at least that's my hope).  I've adjusted just fine to the boot and I've been back to the gym 4 weeks now.  It feels wonderful to be doing something again and my trainer is just terrific, the best cheerleader ever. I'm going barefoot most evenings at home with no pain so I believe the foot is 100% healed now.  I still seem to be hobbling but I think it's more out of habit and worry over putting all my weight on the foot when not in the boot but I'm sure once I'm fully back on 2 feet that will go away.

I had wonderful holidays with the family.  Having my new daughter-in-law and grand daughter was really really wonderful.  I think being without Kevin we bonded in a really great way since we didn't have a buffer with him there.  I think she saw how much effort we put into Christmas for them and I'd like to think it was their best Christmas ever.  Nanny and Pappaw's gifts were definitely the highlight for the little one I think :)  

The poor thing though was sick on Christmas day.  We had all just sat down at the dinner table and the little one says "I don't feel well" and BLA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! before we know it she's turned her head and vomited on the floor lol yes that's the type stuff that happens sometimes isn't it? I just threw a towel over it and we finished dinner the best we could lol.  Thankfully she felt better by later in the day.  But then Nick started feeling bad and was sick then Mike and I caught it too.  Just one of those things, but it didn't damper things too much.

As for my weight, well I did gain some through being off my feet for so long but I'm back in contest mode, started another online one on Jan 5th, and I'm back to 177 lbs as of this morning which I can live with after the broken foot for 3 1/2 months.  I am proud of myself for getting through it so well.  I've had help with my trainer and TOPS and my online community, so very thankful.

Which leads me into my thoughts on regain.  I will talk about my own experiences here since we are all different.  I do think it does apply to most though that have lost a considerable amount of weight or have a considerable amount to lose. During my decades of obesity I isolated myself.  I lived in my secret world of food and depression. Two previous times in my life I had lost about 100 lbs.  But I never really fixed any of the issues within myself that had brought me to super obesity so I regained it all plus more each time.  

Do I feel like you have to open up the past to get to today and the future? I kind of do.  I think we have to reveal it all to ourselves and be honest with what got us obese in the first place.  It could be a tragic childhood, it could be just one event in our lives, it could be just falling into a depression we couldn't bring ourselves out of, really there are so many reasons that could lead a person to obesity.  But it's about how we feel about ourselves that is at the bottom of it.

We have to fix our self image and build self esteem.  We have to stop being people pleasers and helping everyone else around us but ourselves.  We have to be #1 on the list.  We also have to be an open book.  I think isolating is at the top of the list for regain.  I know when I'm struggling it's reaching out that helps pull me out of myself and my addiction and gets me back to the top of my list and treating myself well.

We have to change our habits too.  We really do have to make eating right and exercise something like brushing our teeth or taking a shower.  We have to make that mental connection with it, find that pleasure spot.  If eating right and exercise are things we dread we will never stick with it.  

I've always said "put more things in your life to succeed than fail".  I have TOPS, my blog, my online contests, my trainer, my online community, email friends and the list goes on....  I put so many things in my life that it makes it impossible to isolate myself.  I am always an open book and yes I still at times fall back into food addiction even with all that.  But never for long.  I won't allow myself to go too long without reaching out to someone.  

We all need support.  In Tom's book he calls it the 5th element and I think it is very important. I have to stay connected to people.  I don't know about others but as a child I was neglected a LOT.  So I sought comfort in food but I'm realizing that other things can fill that void that I experienced for so much of my life.  Exercise, company of people, just reading other people's words on my computer screen, music, going to my TOPS meeting, my trainer, so many things can bring me that comfort I crave and so I try to always stay connected.  

I try to never be in denial either about what I'm doing.  That's why all these years I've always put my weight on my blog because it helps to make me accountable and being accountable is what will keep me moving forward instead of backwards. I don't think everyone needs this much accountability but I know I do.  

But it's the mental aspect I think that is most important.  Looking myself in the mirror everyday and talking nice to myself.  Believing to my core that I really am capable of anything I put my mind too.  To not have fear of regain because I know what to do to lose weight.  To know too that I am not my weight.  That I am a good person and that who I am is far far more important than a number on the scale. 

I also think we have to find joy/happiness in the journey.  I know when I'm moving my body I feel alive and well deep in my being.  I try to move through my day being mentally awake, where when I was super obese I went through life in a fog just thinking about the next thing I would put in my mouth.  

Now I find the joy in a good workout or just going grocery shopping or cutting up veggies for my soup or making my protein bars.  Of course those are health related things but the bigger joy/happiness in my journey comes from spending quality time with the people in my life.  Smiling as much as possible, giving compliments, being available to Mike and the kids for a game of cards or just a talk about something going on with them.  

I had lost my joy/happiness at 378 lbs.  I keep that first in my mind when I want to fall into my food addiction and block out the world.  I am a far better, wife, mother, friend, etc now than I ever was years ago and it's not because I've lost a lot of weight.  It's because I've realized what is important in life and food is no longer at the top of the list. Yes, comfort still is there near the top and I'm learning to comfort myself through finding love for myself and when I can't find it within I find it from the people most dear to me.  

So my advice is ask for help, reach out, put more things in your life to help you succeed than fail because you've surely helped enough people in your life that you deserve the same loving care. Through reaching out you will learn to really care and love yourself too.  

I'm sure I could ramble on for hours on this topic.  But for my dear friends out there that are struggling with regain right now just know you are loved and life really is about our relationships.  So start rekindling or working on ones you hold most dear to you because it really is true that on our death bed it won't be the scale we think about it will be the people we will be leaving behind and the things we never got to do with them or say to them.  

To all my dear friends, sending you a big hug.  

Friday, December 20, 2013

And The Winner Is...

Well I wrote down names and folded some paper and Marie drew one and low and behold it said...

MARYFRAN

Congrats and I hope you will love this book as much as I have.  It has helped me in so many ways to really understand things better.  

Please email me at bbubblyb@gmail.com with your address and I will do my best to get it in the mail next week.  I am the biggest procrastinator so please forgive me if it takes a bit longer.  I will be home next week though so will try to get it in the mail then :)

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Drawing soon

Not many people commented for the book so thought I'd let it run another few days. Be back in a day or two :) hope more will come read the review and leave a qcomment.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

A Foot Update

Here I am finally, feel like I've neglected my blog these past many months.  Need to try to get here at least weekly.  So an update on the old foot.  It's healing so it's looking like I won't need surgery thank goodness.  I got the cast off on Monday finally after 8 long weeks.  I am now in a walking boot for another 6 weeks but can fully put my weight on the foot now.  I'm not liking the boot much at all, it seems crooked to me and makes me feel so unbalanced and wobbly.  Plus my ankle is hurting me now, Mike tells me to stop complaining lol.  I'm sure with a bit more time I will get use to it but it just makes me nervous.  Like today there was ice all over the porch so I was scared about falling.  My anxiety is back quite a bit lately.

The family is doing fine.  Kevin's wife and daughter will be coming to spend Christmas with us since he shipped out last week.  It will be nice having a little one in the house for Christmas morning, she's 5.  

I of course haven't done hardly any shopping yet which is typical for me so hopefully this weekend we will get a move on.  We don't have the tree up yet either so hope to get that up and decorations around.  I wanted to do it last weekend but no one would get the stuff from the shed for me.  I'm sure if I say I'm going to hobble out there myself this week someone will go get it lol.  

Tomorrow going to a Christmas luncheon for one of my TOPS groups and taking J to a dinner theatre up the road to see Miracle on 34th street for her Birthday so it should be a nice day.  Today was Marie's Christmas program, she always wants us to come then pretends she doesn't really want us there, typical 12 yr old I guess lol.  Friday is Mike's company Christmas party so I have some Christmas stuff going on which is nice.  

Food has been good the past few days but tomorrow will be tough with 2 meals out.  My weight is up after 8 weeks.  Between lack of exercise and far too much eating I feel pretty upset with myself after working so hard this year to get back to my low weight.  I plan on getting back in the gym next week.  I've started working with an online trainer and I'm super excited about it, he's a great guy and I'm feeling motivated again to get moving. Going to focus on upper body though for now.  Don't want to take any chances with the foot.

Vickie, could you email me your email address (bbubblyb@gmail.com).  I can't tell you how many times I've wanted to write but didn't know where :) For my surgeries you can look under Jan 2011 (lower body) and July 2011 (upper and lower body).  I did a lot of rambling with both so not sure what you will get from reading them lol.  I sometimes forget all I went through myself.  I hope you are doing better today and you get some rest.  I do remember sleep was a big issue for me through both surgeries.  

Everyone, don't forget to put in for the book giveaway.  Even if you may not want it maybe someone you know might.  

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle Review and Book Giveaway

Well another several weeks have went by but I'm trying to get here more often to post. 
 
I'm doing a book review and giveaway today of a book that holds a lot of meaning to me. 
 
During my weight loss journey I've really been privileged to have gotten to know some really great people that have really helped me push myself to be the best me I could be.  One thing I know for sure is the people we surround ourselves with are the people that either help or hurt us.  So I've really made it my goal to have people that treat me well in my life on a daily basis.  One of those people that have touched my life is Tom Venuto.  I didn't always know him as a friend but his book really helped me. So when he asked if I'd be interested in reviewing his new hard cover book of the ebook I bought back in 2008 I was honored and said yes.
 
The copy that I'm giving away is one of many that I purchased myself because I plan on giving several out at Christmas gifts this year.  I really do believe in this book whole hearted.  It's not a "get thin quick" book it's the real deal and it's based on sound advice.
 
I'm guessing most of the people that read my blog already have their own weight/fat loss/fitness plan but I still think this book could teach you a few things you may not know about nutrition or fitness. 
 
Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle Review
 
I bought the Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle ebook in the summer of 2008. I was almost 100 lbs down but still had another 100 to lose and I was struggling. I had seen Tom's book before in my online searches but didn't think it was for me since back then I was a 350+ lb woman and I thought it was a bodybuilder book. But after buying it as soon as I started reading it I realized how much I could have benefited from it had I bought it on day one.

Having spent just about my whole life super obese I had very little knowledge how the body really worked. But through reading BFFM I learned what the muscle in my body really was worth and what fat loss compared to weight loss really meant. I also learned about nutrition in a new way that made so much sense to me, that made it not a diet but something I could live with doing for the rest of my life. With the help of BFFM I went on to lose another 100 lbs.

When I found out Tom was coming out with a hard cover of Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle I just knew I wanted to buy it. Not just for myself but to share with people in my life that had been struggling with their weight for years too. I didn't just buy one copy I bought 7 because I want to share it with many and really have them learn how to change their lives as I have, I believe in it 100%. Hopefully seeing my success they will read it cover to cover like I did and really live it.
 
I won't try to kid anyone, to lose a lot of weight (fat) you have to put in the time and work and it's a life long mission. But BFFM explains how to do it and in a way that is understandable and doable by anyone from the young to the old or the slightly out of shape to the super obese. It really is a livable life long plan, not a diet. It also taught me what it really means to create new life long habits and to set goals for myself that ARE attainable.

Now for the differences between the ebook and the hard cover, I wasn't expecting so many changes in the hard cover but it's been made even easier to understand by being broke into sections, mental training, nutrition, cardio and weight training. It really felt like a totally new read to me. The biggest change for me is the section on weight lifting. In the ebook I didn't grasp that section at all so I ended up buying myself another book on weight lifting at the time. But it's been totally rewritten in the hard cover with lots of added material that is understandable to even a person that has done little to no weight training. I really liked too that there was a beginner workout (primer) with detailed instructions for each exercise. I really think just about anyone could manage these 10 exercise that will help give them the base to move on to the TNB-28 workout with confidence.

I can't say enough good things about Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle, it really has changed my life.

So if you would like to win a copy just post a comment below.  I will do a drawing next Tuesday.  

Sunday, November 24, 2013

All I Want For Christmas...

Here I am finally, feels like forever since my last post.  I've been trying to keep up with a lot of you.  It's really helped me with recovery reading your posts and also as much inspirational stuff as I can find.  Staying positive is the biggest thing through my recovery for sure.  

I went to the doctor on November 11th. I guess in my head I hoped I'd be an exceptional healer and things would move alone faster than everyone else with the foot.  But guess I'm just typical :) He told me at least 4 more weeks in the cast.  He also told me to start putting 25% weight on the foot and I started this weekend.  

He gave me a boot for my cast so I put that on yesterday morning and got on my crutches (just using 1 now) and put my foot on the scale to see what 25% felt like.  I realized trying to do a certain amount of weight isn't an easy task but he had told me to go on my pain level.  Surprisingly I've not felt any pain at all in the foot but my ankle is really tender.  I've had some issues with the ankle, think the cast is just very tight in that area.  You don't realize how much you move your ankle either when walking so it's been tough trying to walk with the cast having my foot bent in a certain position.  But I'm still very happy with how it went yesterday for my first day.  

I'm hopeful when I go to the doctors again on Dec 9th he will take off the cast.  He told me to continue gradually adding weight on the foot.  With it in the cast I don't really see being able to put more than 50-75% with the ankle issues but I will do my best.  

Thanks for all the well wishes everyone I've really appreciated you still coming and reading even though I haven't been here much.

Vickie, thanks so much for all your foot advice and telling me about the even up it will definitely be helpful.  It's due to arrive in a few days, I had hoped it would get here before I started walking on the foot but it won't be to long.  

On the home front Mike and the kids have been so good with waiting on me and helping me.  This is definitely teaching me patience but also it's teaching me just how grateful I am for everyone and everything in my life.

We went to see Kevin last weekend.  He ships out on Dec 3rd or 4th but will only be gone about 6 weeks so that's good for the family.

We leave for Thanksgiving Wednesday to go to Kentucky to see Mike's family as usual.  Will be interesting with the broken foot but I'm sure I will manage.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!

Till next time...

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Checking In

Just a short update since it's been so long.  Today is the 30th and it would have been 11 days till my marathon.  I was in week 20 (a few weeks ago) doing a 12 miles, which was a short walk considering I had done 20 miles the Saturday before.  It was raining and so I had decided to do my 12 miles at the gym.  Not even sure how I managed it but right around mile 11 I got a cramp in my right foot, guess I kind of lost my balance and before I knew it I had stoved my left foot into the machine and bent my toes back to the point it felt like something cracked.  I hobbled out of the gym to the van, called Mike and started to cry saying I think I might have just broke my foot.

I have never broke anything in my life so at that point I was in a state of shock and to think just 4 weeks from my marathon that I've been working towards for like 4 yrs now it seems.  So I went home and we took my shoe off and checked the foot out.  No bruising, no swelling, it looked pretty normal but it sure didn't feel normal.  Mike kept assuring me it was just a strain or something and that given a bit of time I'd be just fine.  Of course I so badly wanted to believe him but deep down I had a feeling it wasn't going to go that well.  I cried and cried and then decided to lay down and hope that I would magically wake up and everything would be ok.  3 hours later I awoke to not being able to walk on the foot at all and it starting to swell.  It was after 10pm by then but I told Mike I thought I better go to the hospital so we did.  As I was getting x-rayed I told the tech that I had a marathon I was walking in 4 weeks and her next words confirmed my fears "probably not" she said.  

She took me back to our room and when the doc came in I knew what she was going to say.  She said how sorry she was about my marathon and confirmed that yes I had broken my foot and that I had broke it in a place that was hard to heal.  I had broke the long bone off the pinkie toe along the side of my foot.  She also mentioned the swimmer that had swam to Cuba and how it had taken her 5 tries to finally make it.  Tears started to roll down my face and I was officially heart broken.  

It's now 2 weeks later, I've been in a pretty purple cast and trying to adjust to life not being able to put any weight on my foot.  I got myself a knee walker which has been great getting around on so at least I'm not on crutches all day long.  Everything feels like a chore and I swear it feels like I'm back in the fat days lol.  But I'm focusing on good nutrition and reading everything I can on bone health/mending so that I can have the best outcome as the doc has told me if after 6 weeks in the cast the bone isn't mending then I will have to have surgery to put a screw in.  If it is healing then I will probably have 6 more weeks in a walking cast after that.  So I'm looking at 3 months minimum recovery.  

I'm not sure what lessons I'm suppose to learn from this but I know for sure one is definitely patience. 

Mike has been great and so have the kids so I'm managing.  I'm not sleeping well at night so working has been tough but my boss has been great and so if I need an extra hour of sleep in the morning I take it.  I think he's just grateful I'm coming to work.  

So that's life for me these days.  I'm doing my best to stay up beat and since it's that time of year for me to do my yearly visits to my TOPS chapters that's what I've been planning so hopefully it will help keep me motivated and maybe help someone else.  

I've been checking up on many of you and it seems most are doing well.  I'm sorry I'm not commenting as much as I'd like but not able to from work. I miss it here and really should try to get back to at least weekly posting as I know it helps me to just ramble on :) well I should get to bed.

Hugs to you all.

Till next time...

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Hello!!!

Just stopping by quick before bed.  I have been checking on some of you and it's always nice reading your posts and how you're doing.  

Things with me have been really busy.  Kids are back in school so just trying to get in the new routine of things. I have 2 1/2 weeks left of my online challenge and I'm doing fairly well.  Haven't dropped as much weight as I had hoped but I saw 172 lbs the other morning so I will continue on and hopefully reach the 160's by the end of the challenge.  I'm very content where I am now so I really don't care if I go any further.  I am just grateful to have peace and self love most days.  I hope it will continue after the challenge is over. 

Ok, about the family, we've had some serious things happening.  Back just a day before my last post Kevin went and married his girlfriend without telling us.  We found out a few weeks later and I was very sad that they didn't tell me so I could have been there.  Honestly I don't care I just want to see them happy, I'm hopeful they will be.

Nick's drama continues but I'm hopeful it will all be a valuable lesson for him. Marie's enjoying her new teacher and comes home chatty everyday which has been nice.

Poor Mike, he had a heart attack scare a few weeks ago.  I never thought something could affect me so much.  I spent 3 days eating like a crazy person worrying would I lose him.  Thankfully, it must have been related to his pinched nerve in his back that he had a month or so ago.  After many tests the doctor said his heart was in good shape.  I'm hoping it will re motivate him as he's been struggling with his weight the past year.

My marathon training continues and this week I walked my longest walk so far, 14 miles.  My joints seem to be holding up ok but my spirit was wavering there for a bit.  One of my online challenge teammates has asked to walk the marathon with me so I won't be alone :) I'm so very grateful.

I'm so very grateful for so many things.  

Till next time...

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Has it really been that long?

Wow, think this is the longest I've ever been away from my blog.  I haven't really had a lot of extra time these days and when I think about posting I never seem to find my way here.  But I've missed blogging a lot and keeping in touch with all my blogger buddies.  I've checked on many of you but just haven't been commenting since I can't from work anymore.  I need to find myself a new routine in the evenings so I can at least come and post here once a week.

Things with me are good.  Work has been very busy so I just haven't had any extra time online these days much.

I'm doing my summer online challenge which is keeping me pushing forward but it's a mixed bag with exercise and food.  I can honestly say I think I've let go of a great deal of my regain fear.  I've talked so much about finding that peace and balance for myself and I know letting fear go is a huge part of finding that peace.  My weight hasn't went down really since my last post (180 lbs) but I'm ok with that as I've held pretty steady with it and it's felt good to me.  Of course I'm hoping to at least drop 5-10 lbs during the summer challenge which ends in mid Sept.

Kevin and his family are in VA now settling into their new place.  He still hasn't shipped out to sea yet so I'm hoping we will get to see him at least one more time before he goes.  They came and visited another weekend after they moved so I could tell they missed us especially the little one, she cried when she had to leave to go back home. 

Nick, is growing up so fast it seems.  We've had our ups and downs and to think we thought we'd get a bit of a break before more teen drama lol.  But I guess it could be worse if they were spaced closer together we could have double drama.  Anyway, we are working on it and I can see him growing up some finally.  He's smart and kind so that means a lot to me. 

Marie too is growing up, she looks like a grown young woman already and she's not even 12 yet.  But thankfully she's rather tomboyish so maybe I won't have to worry to much for a few more years lol.  

Mike did something to his back, poor guy, and has been suffering the past 2 days.  I guess he pulled a muscle or something though we have no idea how.  I sure hope it goes away as quickly as it came.  

My marathon training is going along pretty well.  I'm having some knee/leg issues so will need to go to the Orthopedic doc to make sure it's just my arthritis, maybe get myself some joint pills.  I don't know that I could take another year of not being able to do my marathon.  I think I would almost crawl across that finish line before I'd let this goal go another year without accomplishing it.  It's been in front of me so long and I just HAVE to do it this year.  Today was an 8 mile walk and though it wasn't my fastest time I felt good about it and I'm feeling motivated for the next long walk next week.

We've been back from vacation about a week.  We spent almost a week in Kentucky camping at Cave Run Lake.  It was something new for us camping there and though I thought it was nice enough I think I prefer Shenandoah and the wonderful hiking and views there.  I had thought of that 9 mile hike with the 9 waterfalls I never got to do last year on my 45th Birthday, maybe next year that will happen.  I did get to go tubing though for the first time ever, boy was that a crazy ride lol was a lot of fun though and I would surely do it again, maybe even try water skiining. 

After our camping we spent a night with Mike's mom.  I just love the farm and got in my usual walk to the bridge while I was there.  Then Mike and I headed off without the kids for a few days on our own.  

We spent a wonderful day in a small little sweet town called Helvetia, WV.  If you've ever thought of a town lost in time that is the place, there is no phone or internet and not even a TV.  There is only 4 rooms in the whole town to stay in. We ended up having the whole Inn to ourselves which was wonderful.  They had books at the Inn of stories that people had written about their visits there.  I felt like I knew everyone in town.  There are only 59 residence in the town.  The morning we left I asked the woman that fixed our breakfast if she would sit and talk with us and it was just sweet hearing how she had worked there 27 yrs and how much she loved the place.  I hope to some day get to go back and take the children.

After our day in Helvetia we went to the Poconos (PA) and stayed in one of those cheesy rooms with the champagne glass hottub and heart shape pool in your room :) We enjoyed our time alone though I must admit it felt like old eating times and I was actually happy to get home and get back to my regular eating routine.  

Then we had a week on our own before we went and picked up the kids yesterday.  

Friday marked 6 yrs on this journey for me.  Hard to believe it's been that long.  But I can see how far I've come and I can honestly say I'll never go back to my former self.  Sure I may struggle every now and then with a few lbs but I really am living a different lifestyle than I use to and that isn't going to change for me.  I know if I keep putting goals in front of me too it will just help push me forward to an even healthier me.  

Till next time...

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Has it really been 5 weeks?

I can't hardly believe it's been 5 weeks already boy how time flies.  It's been a busy 5 weeks for me for sure.  Kevin, his girlfriend and her little girl have been with us 2 weeks now (feels like longer).  Our graduation visit turned into a moving visit and that's what I did for Mother's day lol.  

In our little 1500 sq foot house 7 people and one bathroom is a lot but we are managing.  Poor nick is in the livingroom but that's probably not been a bad thing as he's spending more time with us that way.  We've definitely been doing more family things and we do have dinner together almost every night which has been nice.  The first week I felt like I was so out of my routine it was starting to bring back my anxiety but this week I adjusted things and I'm back to a more normal routine for myself. 

I'm enjoy having them with us, it will be 2 more weeks till they can move to their new apt 4 hours from us. Having the little one has been sweet, she already calls me Nanny and is always so happy to see me.  I had forgotten what it was like to have a 4 yr old around.  She thinks I'm the magic cooking lady and as soon as I got in the door the other day she said "what's for dinner Nanny" lol, too cute. 

Today her and her mommy helped me plant flowers and work in the yard, it was a very productive day and a nice bonding time for us.  Tonight I asked C what could I cook for her as a special dinner to thank her and she seemed very surprised.  Having spent her life in foster care I don't think she's use to having a family and I can see she's grateful for our acceptance towards her and her daughter.  I think she's good for Kevin too.

While I was in NY for Kevin's graduation, which was wonderful btw I got to see Lori (findingradiance.com) and spend a few hours just chatting with her over coffee in one of her coffee spots :) She is always such a pleasure to be around I wish she lived closer as I'm sure I've said before.  I know I would learn to ride a real bike for sure lol.  

As for me, well with contests over I seem to have some what fallen back into old ways, though with more awareness of myself.  I had my phone call with Tom yesterday too which was really great, he's so down to earth.  I'm looking forward to his summer challenge and really do believe I will see a new me by the end of the 98 days in more ways than just a few more lbs down the scale.  I think I am ready to let go of any more fears I have about regain as I know letting those fears go will help me to maintain.  I do want a balance in my life and not for maintenance to feel like something I endure.  

I know as long as I'm diligent I will be fine.  Tom and I also talked about us just being people that needed the next big goal in front of us to push us to be our best and I really do believe that about myself. 

My next big goal is to walk a marathon this year (Nov 10th) and training starts now.  I think it is just what I need to push me through the summer challenge and also through any fears I do have.  I know it won't be easy, I'm guessing I may have a few more good cries on my favorite road but I have confidence I will accomplish what I set out to do and I will be a stronger person for having done it.  

I want to just comment on my comments especially with having been missing so long.

Carla, it's always wonderful getting a comment from you and I know you are right that fruit should be my sugar of choice always and only.  

Jane, yes I was talking about you of course :) you are definitely right on having sugary things throwing some people back into cravings and obsessive hell, I have been there. I don't want a life time of that for myself.  I don't know for sure if I can be a Norma, I'm guessing I'm more a Jane type but I also know I can't be to afraid of my actions as I am the one in control.  

Suzy, hugs to you too.

Drazil, I always love your posts and need to get back to visiting you as you always make me laugh.

Lori, it was wonderful seeing you again so glad you made time for me even with vacation starting the next day.

Eesh, thanks.

Vickie, I do think I lost the weight far to quickly, it ended up being 22 lbs in 8 weeks but through the summer challenge I do plan on losing slower so that I don't have a relapse after it ends as I did somewhat this time.  I'm still doing ok (up a few lbs) but want a more balanced 98 days than I had 49 days with these past contest.  I know doing the contest isn't really the best way to go to drop more weight but for me I am competitive so putting something in my life like that does help me in a lot of ways.  I really think I will see a me I've never seen before by the end of this next challenge. I agree that staying away from fat, sugar and salt is the best plan as I found myself substituting the other 2 for sugar and was trying to convince myself by saying "well your not eating sugary things" but of course we know that's just lying to myself as fat and salt too can be triggers. It's so true too about when we know better we do better and that when we don't, we don't feel good. I've appreciated your comments these past months they have been very helpful to me.  I do look to people like you with more maintenance under your belt to help me.

M, thanks!

Eric, thanks also!

Amanda, when I got your comment I went and took a look at your last many posts :) always enjoy reading what you have to say. So true that everyone in the contest were winners.

Amy, I wish it was easier to help others believe in themselves but so often they don't.  I continue to try though and stay hopeful for them.

Debbie, yes so true you have to believe to achieve.  I had set out to win both contest so that is definitely more proof that is true.

Caitlin, thanks haven't went and took a look yet but always cool to make a list :)

Well I've spent today digging in the dirt and I'm worn out.  Tomorrow my niece (yes Kevin's sister) , her husband and little girl are coming to visit.  It's been 3 1/2 yrs since the last time she was here so I'm excited.  She plans on spending the night too so more time together which is great.  I'm hoping she will come down more after this.

I went to see my mom last week too.  It was a short but nice visit.  Got to see my sister too which was nice since I hadn't seen either of them since January.  My mom looked pretty good I thought. Kevin went with me too so they got to meet his girlfriend and the little one.  I think that meant a lot to my sister (not Kevin's mom) since she hadn't seen him in a few years. 

 I feel in my heart I'm finding more peace with my family.  I've actually been thinking about my father a lot lately. Not really sure yet what I want to do with that but I'm thinking on it as there usually is a reason when someone is on your mind.  

Well I'm off to bed.

Till next time...

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Checking In

Got a comment from Vickie asking how I was so thought I should come post.  I wanted to wait till the results of the online contest were in which happened last night.  I've missed being here blogging but I think I really did need the gym contest and the online one to get me back on track. Even more than that I needed to really work on some self image issues and I think both contests have really helped plus lots of audio books I've been listening too.

So the finale for the gym contest was Saturday.  Yes, I won :) and yes it felt really terrific.  But not because I won but more because of the friends I made during the contest.  We were all so very happy for each other (most of our little group got prizes).  I felt bad for the one girl that was just a few lbs behind me but I did work hard and though I had mixed emotions about wanting to win I was "in it to win it".  Plus $350 isn't anything to sneeze at so that was a nice little boost for me too.  It means I can go buy some smaller clothes to get to the next stage for myself.

Then the online contest, yep I won that too, came in 3rd which meant I got one of the top $500 prizes and I get a hour long coaching chat with Tom Venuto (author of Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle).  I don't know when that will happen but I have to think up some questions for him about getting to the next stage for myself and maybe he has some good advice for the mind/self image stuff too.  It will just be cool to get to talk to him after so many years of following his program.  

I am back in the 170's (was 176.5 on Saturday for the weigh in) and working to head into the 160's within the next few months. I'm realizing so many things about myself but the big thing is I know I can go further down the scale. I've come to realize in the past few months that the reason I was drifting up the scale instead of down is because I wasn't willing to give up "using food" that my secret relationship with food meant more to me than being the best me I can be.  I also know that I deep down still didn't feel "good enough" and I still placed far to much of my identity on my weight and weight loss.  

I really want to help others from my own experiences.  I want to make people realize that they are capable of anything they put their minds too.  I know that each person has to want it for themselves but I also know maybe something I can say could help make them at least start.  I'm hoping to get a TOPS chapter started at my gym.  My little group of folks from the contest are interested and I think together we could accomplish so much.  I also think getting a chapter started in a gym would be a first for TOPS or at least in the state of Maryland and maybe it could start something big so we can get younger folks into the organization.  That is really what TOPS needs if it wants to survive.  Anyway, I have new ideas and new hopes and goals.

Friday, Kevin turned 21.  Hard to believe that he's that old.  We got to skype with him and his girlfriend and her little girl.  He graduates nuclear school next month and we will be going up there for it.  I'm very much looking forward to seeing them.  He will be going out into the fleet after that. They have decided that his girlfriend and her little girl will move here closer to us so that while he's away she will have family near by since she doesn't have family of her own.  It's possible they may buy a house so they may stay with us for a few weeks (or months) depending how things go.  I think I will enjoy having a little grand daughter :) She's 4 and the cutest little thing.  I think it will enrich all our lives to have them closer by.  

Jane comes to mind when I write this next part as I know she can totally identify and she has always said this is something that is a must for any food addict.  I have decided for the final time that I just can't indulge in sugary things.  I've talked about it here before but during these past 8 weeks I've really come to terms with it.  I've decided for myself that I won't eat anything sugary till my Birthday in June and then just for my Birthday I will allow myself a sweet treat.  Then I will pick another date after then but from this point on it will be only the occasional thing and it will be scheduled down the road and for just a one time thing.  I just know for myself that it's the sugary things that make the scale creep up and also give me the crazy brain. I'm going to see how this goes for me but deep down I know it is what I need to do for me.  

Nick, Marie and Mike are doing fine.  We've had some drama with Nick but we are managing and I know everything will be ok.  It's funny how different children are from each other and how they need different parenting.  I'd like to think we are doing an ok job.

Well that is it from me, I'm hoping I will find more time to come post now and get back to supporting all my friends here, I've missed everyone.  I have read some blogs but have lots of catching up to do.

Till next time...


Friday, March 29, 2013

Happy Easter!!!

Well it's almost Easter already, seems like time is flying by.  I took today off, not feeling very well, have a tinge of a sore throat coming on and was just feeling exhausted last night and this morning.  Feels good to just be home relaxing and doing what I want.  The kids are home with me so Marie and I will probably venture out in a bit to do some shopping.  Have things to get for the TOPS convention next week and also for Easter and my great niece's Birthday which is tomorrow.  

We will be heading up to Baltimore for the party so looking forward to seeing my niece and great niece, hard to believe she's turning 2 already.  I'm not sure if my mom will be at the party or not.  I would volunteer to pick her up but my niece doesn't really want her there so it's my sister pushing for that yet my sister isn't going because I'm coming.  All the darn family dysfunction, just wish it could all be easier.  I know we will have a good time no matter what though.

So the gym and online contests are still going well.  I'm back to 181 lbs as of this morning so that's an 18 lb lose in just 6 weeks.  Sometimes I don't understand myself.  Just seems not all that hard for me to drop a few lbs when I put my mind to it.  I sure know how to lose weight so not sure why I can't learn how to keep it off easier.  I have said it many times and heard it from others about it being giving up sugar.  So once the contests are over I'm going to continue not having sugar.  I will allow myself a Birthday treat (not at home) and maybe a few other times through the year but I'm really going to give it a good effort to stay clear of it.  I find that pizza or the occasional fast food doesn't trigger the "crazed eating" mind like sugary treats do.  So for now that's my plan.

Will I win the gym contest?  Well I don't know, the smaller girl is still ahead of me by like 0.2% and there is another larger woman that is less than a % behind so we will see.  Honestly at this point if I don't win I will be fine with it.  I think the big thing that has happened for me is I've met some really nice people during the challenge and feel like I've made some lasting friendships at the gym.  I'm hoping after the challenge that we can continue working out sometimes.  I think it's what's been missing for me.  

Mike is in a bit of a funk these days.  He's drifted back over 300 and that's always scary for both of us.  He hasn't been going to the gym this week either.  I hope he can get himself back on track.  He does see when he goes to the gym at least 3 times a week he at least can maintain and even lose a bit.  He's been eating out a lot more during the day too as I see him bringing his packed lunches back home.  I noticed he didn't even take lunch today.  I hope he can find his mojo again but I love him no matter what.

If I've realized nothing else through this 20 lb gain this past year it's that it's my self image I have to fix.  I have to love myself just as I am today and really mean it.  I need to look in the mirror and point out my good traits not always pick at myself.  I need to realize how far I've come and that the person I am today is not the depressed, anxious, unhappy person I was 5 1/2 yrs ago.  I'm healthy now and though I may not be a size 6 I am happy and content in my size 12 body.  I know just loving the me of today will help push me to an even healthier me down the road if that's what I want for myself.  

Well guess I better go get showered so Marie and I can get going.  

Hope everyone has a very Happy Easter!!!

Till next time...