Sunday, July 31, 2011

Feminist AND Feminine

I'm reading a book called Feminine Appeal: 7 Virtues of a Godly Wife and Mother. It's a really good book. One of the things it talks about is appearance. It does say that vanity is bad, but that looking beautiful for your husband is good. That we should strive to be beautiful (inside and out) for our husbands.

Now, I grew up in the 80's and entered the work force in the 90's. Women were powerful and I admired it! But I thought that being feminist and being feminine weren't compatible. I believe that the mind is the most important part of any human being and I wasn't interested in being beautiful. Only smart. I didn't want to lose weight because I didn't want people to be more interested in me just because I was skinny. I wanted to be respected for brains.

While the motivation behind this was decent, like everything that was my life it was not balanced. Taking proper care of yourself earns respect from people. I know that now. And taking time to make yourself beautiful, because you feel good when you do and it pleases your husband is not a bad thing. It only enhances you.

Now, I still believe that women can be powerful and should strive for excellence. I have many friends whose greatest desire is for the daughters to grow up and marry a nice man. My great desire is for my girls to go to college, find what they love to do in life and THEN find and marry a nice man. My girls are beautiful. I have no doubt that someone will fall in love with them someday. But I want them to have both brains and beauty. I want them to be both Feminist AND Feminine. To know they are respected for both what they look like and what they can do.

Today I am "auditioning" for the worship team at church. It's not a big deal, but the leader just wants to hear my sing and blend with them. It's a big deal for me in one way though, because I'm stepping out and putting what I can do out there. I'm no superstar singer, but I can sing. And at my last church I felt squashed by people that I wasn't good enough. (my opinion and feelings). So I'm trying a new bold approach. Not waiting to be asked, but initiating! If it doesn't go well, so be it, but I have hope.

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, July 30, 2011


Sometimes I can be very selfish. This weight loss journey, while it is good and right, has made me selfish too. My workout schedule must be fit in despite what others want, I make meal choices with me in mind more than others.

It might be a necessary evil in order to accomplish the goals I have. And ultimately I want to be around for a long time for my hubby and girls, so that is somewhat selfless.

But recognizing this, I have decided to take my hubby on a date, and go see a movie HE wants to see (Captain America). I took my kids to Monkey Joe's AND Chuck E Cheese this week (Two places I like to avoid most of the time!!). Life is about give and take and while I need to take time in order to lose weight, I need to remember to give, too!

Happy Saturday!

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Way it Makes Me Feel...

Here are some recent things that have sent me to the moon in glee.

The Fashion. I can buy much better, stylish clothes now that I'm a smaller size

Having a towel wrap around me (NOT a bath sheet!)

Having a friend tell me she didn't recognize me at first because I'd lost weight and my face was slimmer.

Having a guy in spin class tell me I was looking great

Being 4 1/2 months Diet Coke Free

Going to a party and not feeling like I have to eat everything that is out.

Having more energy to do things

Being able to last through 45 minutes of Sh'Bam (when I couldn't 5 months ago!)

Saying I lost 50 lbs!!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Just a Little Bit....

Doesn't this saying get us in trouble? I've had a good week with food so far...nothing crazy at all, but I'm adding things in here and there that I can probably do without. One granola bar can't hurt. Another's healthy after all. These types of things can really mess us up.

This is a crucial point for me. I've lost the 50 but now my motivation...well maybe my focus...has shifted. There's a little mentality of "I've lost 50 lbs, surely I can have just a little bit and it won't make a difference!" Except a lot of little bits make A LOT!

Need to re-focus. I'm going for the gold...not the bronze!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


That's how I feel after back to back Spin and Pump classes...It's Tuesday and that's my double day with Kiersten. I burned over 500 calories in a 45 minute Spin class and probably close to another 500 in Body Pump. GO me, but OOF!

On a happy note, the pastor of that church with the bad VBS called me and absolutely understood why I was upset and said that he, too, was very frustrated with how things went overall yesterday morning. He said he would personally put a refund of my registration in the mail today. It was just a very nice conversation, and I have hope in humanity when someone listens and responds appropriately to my disappointment.

The 5K I signed up for in September got cancelled, but the Corn Maze one is still on for October. That's probably a good thing since I haven't been out jogging since my last 5k (partly because the weather has been so hot or rainy.

:) Have a happy Tuesday.

Monday, July 25, 2011

I'm only Human, after all.

I did not have a very good eating weekend. And this time I cannot blame the irrationality of PMS, but really it was just my irritation with my children and husband. I love them deeply but I am just so tired of picking up after them all the time. Being a stay at home mom intensifies this because it is what I do: ALL THE TIME. So on the weekend when my husband is home and it adds to the mess, I get tired and cranky. So I had some binging behavior (which is still VERY much better than my old binging days) but still. It annoys.

I also worked out at 5:15AM on Friday which means means that it was 72 hours between workouts which is the longest I've gone since March. I really don't think I'll be taking that early class again.

Today was annoying. I went to drop off my kids at a local church VBS. (not our church). THe registration process was SO unorganized. Then they had put my girls in two separate groups when I specifically put them in the same group. So they did change it, but the group they switched them to, the teenage leaders weren't engaging with any of the kids and two of the teenagers were just kind of goofing off. My one daughter didn't want to stay at all. When I went to speak to someone about it and explained that I had asked the girls to be together but I wanted them in the green group, not yellow, this woman said to me that requesting to put them together "was your first mistake!!" I went and grabbed my girls and walked out - I told the woman "Don't you ever tell me that the decisions I make for my children are a mistake!!" I was furious!! GRRRR

But I did go walk/jog for a bit and did BodyFlow followed by 3 hours at the pool. THAT was good!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Enjoying every minute of it!!

I've moved from the place of feeling awkward when people notice I've lost weight, to loving every compliment :)! That's right, tell me how good I look! ;) I have not gone vain for sure, because I still weigh 233 lbs. But I am just excited that I am not feeling ashamed and I can shout out - I'VE LOST 50 POUNDS!!

I love now I can do quad stretches (holding your foot in your hand behind you) with NO problem what so ever. 5 months ago I could not do that easily or without pain. It just makes me happy!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

I am NOT a suck up!!!!

Ok. I am annoyed. Today I went to body flow as usual. I had bought a small gift for the instructor as a thank you, since I just reached the 50 lbs lost mark. Donna was very touched by the sentiment. During class she mentioned briefly that it was a great day because I brought her a present, and not even a second later I heard someone say not loudly, but not softly either, thAt I was a "suck up". Well of course I replied loudly that I was NOT a suck up!! Geez. Why do people have to spit on someone else's kindness. Annoyed!!

Hating to Spend Money

Let me preface this by saying that I don't really like saving money either. Hubby and I often debate the merits of Roths and 401Ks and how much we really should be putting into a volatile, unsure investment like those (can you tell how I feel?) I am all for saving for retirement to sustain ourselves in our old age, but I'd rather spend fun money now - and after all what's happened in the market I don't trust that in 25 years that our 401K will be great. It could be, but it's a risk.

Eating well has some financial drawbacks. With blueberries sometimes $3.00 a pint (which is 2 servings) our groceries bills have gone up a bit. A box of LIttle Debbie Oatmeal Pies, which is half the price, goes a LOT farther. Can we see how growing up in a single parent, blue collar family could cause weight gain? The stuff that is crap is cheap, the good stuff expensive! Fish can be $10-15 per pound! I hate the price, love the fish!!

I am trying to plan our 8th anniversary get away. We are planning to go to San Francisco. I am having trouble at the cost though...the plane tickets and the hotel rooms. Geez Louise! I forgot how expensive hotels in a major city are. The Best Western was $250 per night. I REFUSE to pay that for a place to lay my head. However, I am also a bit of a hotel snob so I won't stay in any place that looks like it could be or recently has been infested with any type of bugs.

I think we decided on a bed and breakfast in Nob Hill. We are taking the smallest room and have to share a bathroom in the hall but that was only $138 a night. But it does have a hot tub!! :)

If all continues to go well with my weight loss, we are looking at trying to have a baby starting next spring. By then I should be well under 200 lbs and would feel safer getting pregnant, especially at my old age (I'll be 37 in September)

We have the money to go, but having gone through over a year of paying 2 mortgages because our first house wouldn't sell, then having that house go into foreclosure because it couldn't even sell for LESS than half of what we paid for it...just makes me money shy I guess.

But at least with the food I'm getting better...I try to buy what's on sale in the fruits and vegetables but occasionally I've got to splurge and buy the expensive stuff. My body deserves it. I think when I read "French Women Don't Get Fat" it talked about how Europeans spend more of their budget on food and eat higher quality stuff (which tastes better). I'm trying to do this. '

Anyhow, Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Nifty Nifty! I've lost Fifty!!

I've been waiting to use that title for a while! It's official. I am 50 lbs down from when I started getting serious at the end of March!!! I'm averaging about 13 lbs per month which is fast, but I am also working out pretty much an hour every day of the week, so I don't think it's too bad. Also, if you read often, I'm not starving myself at all and do occasionally splurge on dinners out and ice cream!!

This also means I am 72 lbs down from my all time high in 2006 of 307 lbs. Way to go ME!

Thank you all who read and comment. The encouragement helps get me through each day! I hope that I am equally as encouraging to others.


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Can you Stand ANOTHER Happy Post?

Honestly, the last two days I've been a raging hormonal monster (thank you Aunt Flo) but today I had something happen that made me super happy.

I take 4:00 Spinning class on Tuesdays. There are quite a few regulars who I've been getting to know. There's one guy, Don (in his late 50's) who I haven't really talked to too much. He came up to me today and said. "You look like you are doing really well. You look really good." I shared with him that I was close to having lost 50 lbs and he looked shocked and then gave me a hug! This little bit of encouragement is so huge. Getting compliments from men is big. - Not in a flirty, I'm looking for something better kind of way. I love my husband and there isn't anyone better for me - but because men don't generally take the time to give compliments like that to a woman (and this guy has a wife that takes the class with us too, so it was no way a come one).

This was like the guy who gave me a high 5 when I finished the 5K in June. Just the fact that he would take the time to high 5 me...fat's just huge. I'm sure there are some daddy issues wrapped up in the fact that my dad hardly noticed anything about me so the compliments were very few and very far between, and the fact that my brother has NEVER complimented me in my life. But it makes me happy.

My husband is great. He compliments me daily. Tells me how great I am doing. How beautiful I am. Daily. He fully supports my efforts. IN fact, when I asked whether I should get a job since the kids are in school he said "No, you are doing so well working out, I'd rather you focus on that. There will be time to work in the future". I love this man. He is truly a prince.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Balancing Act

I'm happy, kind of ecstatic really about something things that have been happening in my mind. One of the things that I wanted to achieve when I first started this blog in August of 2009 was a sense of feeling "normal". I believe I am slowly but surely getting there.

Last night we had friends over for a meal. I made spaghetti and meatballs with a green salad and some fantastic bread. I had a little of all of it. I had a glass of merlot. I ate a couple (or few) of the lemon bars I made. All without guilt!! Because I know that I have been very consistent with my exercising and eating (with the exception of that one crazy day which I will officially now blame on PMS.) So I KNOW that one day of eating a little bit higher calories will not make me gain back all the weight I lost.

One of my favorite readers and reads - Dawn (From a New Dawn for Me) was writing about balance today and how often we tend to push ourselves to extremes where we are afraid to eat anything that isn't on our plan or isn't good for us. It causes us so much stress and anxiety, like one bite will be our undoing. For some, this is the case. Leslie, from Something Brilliant is Brewing,(who I have been following the longest and who has followed me the longest) tackles this in her life and her blog. She knows that certain things WILL in fact set her off on a binge, so it is important for her to stick to a plan. Others of us have trigger foods that we know to avoid, but don't have to avoid all carbs or sugars, or whatever it is that triggers.

Each one must find a balance in their life. I felt that balance last night. Knowing the good I've done, allowing myself to eat normally without shame and moving on the next day with the same determination to stay normal and healthy that I had the day before. I need to watch PMS because that is a trigger...the emotions that come with it...

Being able to enjoy a meal without shame and fear is what makes me feel normal. And that makes me HAPPY!

Happy Sunday

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Baggy Butt (Itching to Donate)

I will have a very big bag of clothing to donate to the thrift store at the end of the summer. I would say that 80% of my shorts/pants have given me baggy butt syndrome! Since I've lost a lot of inches from that area, basically I would have to have an extra bottom to fit into the pants/shorts. I've started wearing more skirts because of this. I do NOT want to buy a whole lot of new clothes now, so I'm persevering. Occasionally I pick things up at the thrift store, but because of the way I'm losing weight, even things that fit me in the waist give my Baggy Butt! I did just buy two new bathing suits at JC Penney. It's funny one is a size 22W and is comfy and the other is a size 16W and fits very well too. It's amazing how two very different sizes fit just as well. It's all about the fabric!!

Happy Saturday! I should have some good news in the next couple of days, so be watching! (well reading!)

Friday, July 15, 2011

Roly Poly Face

I am wishing that some more weight would come off my face! Really! It's so frustrating to see a picture and see the big double chin! I know I have a lot more to lose but I need a smaller chin, not smaller boobs!!

Anyhow, here is a photo that another vacation took of my hubby and I on our camping trip. He is really not that much taller than me. I like the picture - except for my chin of course!!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

All is Calm

I've calmed down from my crazy eating yesterday. I initially was going to fast, but by lunch time I was really hungry so I figured I'd just go light and keep my metabolism going.

I went to Body Flow (yoga/tai chi) this morning. This is generally my work out schedule

Monday - body Flow - 1 hour
Tuesday - Spin 45 minutes - 1 hour Body Pump (weight lifting)
Wednesday - Pilates - 1 hour
Thursday - Body Flow - 1 hour
Friday - ShBam - 45 minutes
Saturday & Sunday - random - sometimes Body Pump, sometimes jogging

I don't have a ton of cardio right now, but I figure it's more important to be gaining muscles along the way so as a lose fat I am getting tight and not just flabby.

Hope all are well today! :)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Feeding the Beast

Grrr...I had an bad day. I ate a lot of crap. 2 Little Debbie Oatmeal pies. One Twinkie. Probably 4 servings of chips. I don't know what my deal is. PMS, tired from going to bed late, exhausted from the business of the summer and having the kids home. The hunger - No - the binge beast came out and I fed him.

I did go to Pilates this morning. I'm just chalking it up to one bad day.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

I made it through the storm...

We had a crazy rainy/windy storm here on Monday morning at around 7AM. It knocked out our power and 800,000! other people's power with it. Thankfully it came on about noon time today, so nothing got spoiled in our fridge we kept filled with ice. In some areas close by they don't expect power until Friday!

Of course I had about 7 loads of laundry to do, which I will probably be up until 1 AM doing while watching more episodes of Season 4 of Mad Men. Jon Hamm is kind of a stud, but there are a lot of moments where he just looks really goofy...I like the show though.

Things have been okay...Pumped and Cycled today, Body Flowed yesterday.

Feeling a bit blue but I should be expecting Aunt Flo soon I think....

Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Talbots Skirt

In 2001 I did Weight Watchers for about 30 weeks or so (the longest stretch I'd ever done and I'd lost about 38 lbs. While I was there and losing, I had gone to a Talbot's sale and bought a silk long skirt with lace trip in a buttercream yellow color. I loved it. I found the silk top to match. Of course then I went and gained all the weight back and couldn't fit into the skirt (18W). I eventually had to get rid of the top - silk and sweaty underarms never go very well together...but I didn't have the heart to give away the skirt. Well, readers...of course you know what I'm wearing right now, don't you? And I still love it as much as I did in 2001. Maybe more because I've taken a journey to revisit it.

I am loving exploring better fashion now. At Marshall's the other day I bought two items in the regular section (XL of course!) But how awesome is that!! It'll be a while before I can buy everything there, but there's just so much happiness is buying a top and a skirt that I find flattering and fashionable. Often a troubling bit for us plus sized ladies!

Happy Sunday!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Don't let the door hit you on the way out!!

Okay, this is a funny story...not a mad one. Today I took the SHBam class at the fitness center...this is a lower key Zumba class that is just a ton of fun. When I went in there were these 3 young skinny girls with short shorts already in (probably late teens) stretching out, doing straddle splits and all they were young and fit and could kick this classes a$$. These girls lasted 2 songs out of 10 maybe. They were out of breath and having side cramps. It can be an exhausting class for sure, but there was just so much humor because they had come in all haughty not really prepared for the workout it was. And here I was and this other woman who was even larger than I hanging in there....

I know everyone is at their own fitness level and I give the girls props for working out..but I couldn't help but think 'WOW, I Am more fit than a skinny teenager!!

And I also have to add the instructor Nita to my list of favorite instructors along with Kiersten, Donna and Therese (although she is out with an injury)

Happy Friday everyone! Have a great weekend!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Why is it different this time?

My good friend who is staying here asked me why my weight loss has been different this time and how I am staying constant. It's a good question since I've known this friend for 20 years and have never been able to lose this much weight before.

I told her what I think:
1) I stopped drinking Diet Coke and have very few cravings for sugar
2) I am consistent with exercise
3) I am setting more, smaller goals (something I never did before)
4) I feel freer since my mother died and a lot less sad

I feel like there should be more to there is more to it, but I don't know what it is. I don't know how one morning in March I woke up and decided it was time. There wasn't a "moment". It just started to happen...little by little, pound by pound. I'm feeling more confident though each day. And there isn't a person that doesn't notice I've lost weight. (which was a trip up the last time when noone said anything after I'd lost almost 40 lbs). It's a great feeling.

You should know I haven't always been perfect. A few days ago I had 2 little debbie oatmeal pies and a Twinkie. I was feeling stressed. I eat pie occasionally. I had chocolate and marshmallows when we were camping. But I'm's infrequent. I feel badly when so many people on their blogs berate themselves for having a few treats. It happens. But dwelling in it and looking down on yourself for doing it just keeps you in a spiraling circle of food depression. I guess I hate myself less now when I have some slip ups. Maybe that's part of the key. Learning that weight loss is an endurance sport, not a fast race. Sometimes we limp along, but we just need to keep going!!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Missing Routine

I've been out of routine since Friday. We camped this weekend and now a good friend from Boston is visiting until tomorrow. Normally I would go to the gym regardless or take her with me, but she has 3 kids (1 is a baby) and she is only here until tomorrow, so I really want to cherish the time with her.

But I miss my routine. It is what helps me be successful. I change it here and there, but almost 7 days out of it is tough! I've gotten in some exercise, which is good, but it's not the same.

I'm trying to plan for an anniversary trip with my hubby. Someplace we have to fly to that isn't super expensive...any ideas?

Monday, July 4, 2011

Camping Correctly!

We went camping this weekend at Devils Lake State Park in Wisconsin. It was quite enjoyable with the family and the dog. We hiked every day, and I'm proud of myself for doing it! Some of the hikes were up steep cliff slopes! We had some spectacular views. I managed to eat pretty well too. Only about 4 marshmallows and only 1 trip to Dairy Queen for a Banana Cream Pie Blizzard - YUMMALICIOUS!!

Otherwise I was wise and packed only normal foods and not our usually camping food of crappy caloric food. We had such a relaxing time playing ladder golf, UNO and just hanging out. We were fortunate to also have good campers on both sides of us!!

This picture was one of the hikes we took! (but not of us) It was pretty steep going up! (then down) Good workout. I also got in a jog one morning and did some rowing in the row boat we rented.

Eating well, exercising, relaxing....this is how to camp correctly!!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Loving Thriftiness!!

I love our local thrift store. With most clothing only a few dollars each I've been finding great deals as I am losing weight. I was very excited yesterday. I bought a skirt that was a size 18W because it was $1.50. I figured I'm doing well, it shouldn't take that long to get into it. Well wouldn't you know it actually fit!!! (It does have an elastic waist band, but it wasn't really tight)

I'm loving this. :)