Milestones

I have hit numerous milestones this past week.

First my car rolled over 100,000 miles. And I wasn’t even the one driving it to witness the momentous occasion! It’s exciting but sad at the same time. It isn’t quite 5 years old, so I drive a LOT. I still have about 9 months left to pay on it and am already getting New Car Fever. I would love to get something with a 3rd row and hopefully minimize some of the kids’ fighting. They aren’t usually in the car together more than 10 minutes at a time, yet they insist on arguing and making it a brutal 10 minutes. I really can’t consider a new vehicle until this one is paid off though.

Last Friday I took the day off work. I went for a run early in the day and got more steps than I expected. I think I was at 10,000 steps before noon! It was easy to hit 15,000 steps that day…my first time since getting my Fitbit pedometer! I turned around and did the same thing on Saturday.

I’ve been sticking with Week 6 Day 1 of the c25k program. With an 8 minute run and two 5 minute runs, it pushes me. But not so much that I dread it. It’s actually enjoyable now and I am working on increasing my pace. My best time for this run is 16:01, which is great for me! I’m working to get under 16:00, then will consider moving on to the next workout.

After two crazy step days, I was hurting on Sunday. Not a bad hurt, but I could definitely tell I had been working my body harder. I wanted to run knowing I wouldn’t be able to for a couple more days, but listened to my body and just walked. It was kind of enjoyable to not push myself so hard. And it took a good 10 minutes for my body to loosen up enough that I didn’t hurt. It was a wise move on my part.

Now we’re in the middle of two extremely warm and humid days. With no air conditioner (not even a window unit), I am not about to exert myself in the heat. Even a cold shower doesn’t cut it. By the time I’m dried off, I’m dripping in sweat again. It should cool off again tomorrow, so I will be back to running as much as my schedule allows.

I can hardly wait to hit the pavement, or dirt road, again!

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Giving C25k another shot

Yes, you read that right. I am trying the C25k program again. I tried it once before, maybe a year ago. I made it through ONE workout. ONE! It was great, but then I started having foot problems or pulled my calf muscle. I don’t recall which it was as I’ve had problems with both.

I’m happy to report that this time I have made it through THREE workouts so far! I started late last week. During my first workout, at the end of my first jogging portion, my left calf muscle seized up. It freaked me out, for fear of pulling it and having to deal with an injury again. But I decided I would just take it easy during the jogging parts. I think I’ve been trying to jog too fast or something, so since then, I’ve gone at a nice slow pace. I’ve made it through three workouts, successfully, and it feels great!

I will go through the program slow. If I get to a workout that feels too hard, I’ll go back to another one, or keep repeating it until it gets easier. Whether or not I finish the program doesn’t really matter to me. I just like the structure and it pushes me to do something more strenuous than walking.

My steps have also increased dramatically over the long weekend. I hit an average of 10,000 steps four days in a row! That’s saying a lot since I usually have to push myself to get 7000 steps in a day. By last night, I was exhausted!

While I have been doing well on the exercise front, my eating has been anything but good. Despite my bad eating habits, my spirits are high and I feel better than I have in a long time. I feel more like my old self, the person I’ve been trying to find and figure out who she is with kids.

It was a really nice long weekend. Crops are planted (YAY!!), our vegetable garden is planted, kids were fairly well behaved, I had more patience with the kids, I got some regular exercise, I did some baking which I used to enjoy, the weather was perfect…it was great and I could use another day off of work. I hope this is a pattern that continues.

That’s about it for updates at the moment. I’m hoping to get outside for another c25k workout tonight. If it’s raining, I’ll need to clean my filthy house since it wasn’t  a priority at all over the weekend.

I feel SO much better when I’m productive and active!

 

Still on the upswing??

Last week when I posted, I was feeling a bit better about my stress level. While my diet is still all over the place, I am feeling better emotionally.

We had a nice Easter weekend. Saturday I took the kids to an Easter egg hunt with my in-laws (grandma, aunts, cousins). Those things are always chaos, so I wouldn’t brave it on my own with 3 kids. But with grandma and 3 aunts to help, it makes it enjoyable.  There is a church in our area that hosts the hunt each year, and it’s a nice event. This year weather was decent (although windy!) so there was an even better turnout than usual. Most years, each kid fills a plastic grocery bag with plastic eggs. This year Kody got almost a full bag, Allison about half a bag, and Cameron only got about 8 eggs! Cameron’s age group must have had more kids than they expected, because she had to really hurry to get those few eggs. It was actually really disappointing for her…all the anticipation and waiting, to have the entire thing done in 30 seconds. And her little brother and sister are good about sharing, so that helps.

Easter Day was nice too. After going to church, we headed to my mom’s house for the day. We enjoyed some wine, which was really good after not having it for so long. Just proves that things taste better when I don’t have them all the time. I also don’t miss these things when I don’t indulge in them frequently.

I did not eat well this weekend. Yesterday I was determined to get back on track and ate well all day. Then I got home to a bag of Easter candy from my mother-in-law. So that ended up being my supper. Not my best choice!

I am determined, again, to do well today. It’s still early, but I know I will do well if I stay out of the kids’ candy tonight. And I plan to stay busy, so that will help.

I don’t recall if I’ve mentioned it here, but I am part of a fitbit group for people with 75+ pounds to lose. It is a wonderful group with lots of support. There are daily and weekly challenges, and I am becoming more consistent in completing them. One example is we have Middle Monday where we work our core. One of the suggested exercises is a plank, and I can tell I’m getting stronger. I start by doing a real plank as long as I can, then drop to my knees for the rest of the time. When I first did a plank months ago, I could barely hold a real one for 2 seconds. Last night I held it for 15 seconds!!!! It was an amazing feeling. 🙂

This week there is also a challenge to spend just 5 minutes a day doing some kind of spring cleaning…whether it’s cleaning a window or going through one dresser drawer and getting rid of clothes that no longer fit. Who doesn’t have 5 minutes?? Most of the time, getting started is the hardest part, so once I get going, I finish the task at hand. Since I feel obligated to the group, it is pushing me to get things done…things I’ve been wanting to do anyway. It’s been a good group for me.

* As a side note, if you have a fitbit pedometer, at least 75 pounds to lose, and are interested in the group, let me know.

While I’m not making progress with my weight, I am getting stronger. I am feeling better emotionally. I am working to get my stress under control.

If I keep this up, I know I will eventually see the results on the scale. It will happen. And I will keep the weight off.

Just wait and see.

Trying to find balance

I guess I haven’t been feeling the blog thing lately. I only blog when I feel compelled to, and not because I feel like I have to. So what have I been up to?

I have been back on Prozac for a week now. I honestly feel better already. There have been a few times when Marcus has asked me why I’m in such a good mood. Ha! I hate that I have been crabby for so long, but hopefully it will change now.

Finding the right balance is going to take some time, but I’m hopeful I will find what works for me. And that includes everything in life, not just health stuff. I am focusing on my personal health right now, and will add other focuses later…or perhaps they will just fall into place as I become happier and healthier.

Anyway, thanks to my fitbit group, I am getting more consistent with tracking my food. Even when I make bad food choices, I am learning to log those calories anyway. It keeps me from going totally overboard, and hopefully I will still see a deficit at the end of the week.

I am also actively working to increase my daily steps. I am up to 7000 steps each day, consistently. It’s still a challenge, but getting easier. I do lots of jogging in place, and can tell my stamina is increasing.

I suppose I should throw a weigh-in in here. This morning I was 256.2, so have about 4 pounds of holiday weight left to lose, and 19.2 pounds to my first big goal. That goal is to lose all the weight I gained while pregnant with Kody – 46 pounds! It’s frustrating that I didn’t lose more than a couple after he was born, and he was nearly 10 pounds. But it is what it is, and I’m working on it now. Hopefully by summer it’s gone!

My daughters are both selling Girl Scout cookies this year. Those things are evil!! So far they have stayed in my car. I know we will eat our fair share, but I would like to hold out until the end of the selling cycle. If I start eating them, I won’t be able to stop!

Cameron turns 8 on the 22nd, so I need to get my cake plan together. She wants either a wolf or a penguin cake. I’m not sure I can pull off the wolf, so luckily she is happy with a penguin. I’m glad I started this tradition a few years ago. The kids love their special cake, and I have fun creating them. Some have been a little funky, but they still love them! I promise to post pictures of my creation when it’s done.

I guess that’s about it. Not really exciting, huh?

In case I don’t post before then, I hope all of you have a wonderful Valentine’s Day! Don’t eat too much candy! 😉

It’s been a while!

I’ve been a bad blogger! For once, it doesn’t mean I’m doing terrible. I’m actually doing quite well!

So what have I been up to? Some of you know that I love my fitbit pedometer. I have found a group on the fitbit site that I’m really connecting with. It’s an active group that has daily challenges. Things like Middle Monday where we work our core, and Wing Wednesday where we work our upper body. Plus we have monthly challenges with teams, so I’ve been spending a lot of my time there.

One of the goals with my fitbit group was to write out my overall goal, and 3 reasons I want to meet this goal. Then print it out and keep it somewhere I will see it at least 3 times a day. I thought I would share my goal and reasons.

Overall goal:
Improve my physical, mental and emotional health.

Reasons:
1 – So I can feel like I did at my lowest weight – amazing!
2 – So I can be active and have fun with my kids.
3 – To break the cycle and my kids never have to go through this.

I have also completed my first full week of logging what I eat. I can’t remember the last time I did that! Usually I take a meal/day/weekend off and eat whatever, but nothing good ever comes of that. I’m coming to the realization that I will have to track what I eat for the rest of my life. I still don’t like it, but I’m accepting it. And even if I eat something I shouldn’t, I still need to log it. It is keeping me from getting completely carried away. And when the day comes that I eat something really crazy, I will still count those calories.

So yesterday I weighed in, after my full week of tracking my food. Oh, and I’ve gotten back into exercising. Guess what?! I lost 5.3 pounds! I am sitting at 259, back out of the 260s FOR GOOD. I still have a few pounds of holiday weight to lose, plus a few more to get to my previous lowest weight. But I’ll get there. I am feeling more confident and in control than I have in a LONG time!

I typically don’t lose two weeks in a row, but if I keep this up, there is no reason I shouldn’t. I can hardly wait to weigh myself next Wednesday!

Being on track feels so amazing. I’m going to ride this wave as long as I can!

December: A Plan

Today is my 11th day off of work, if you count Thanksgiving and weekends. It has been nice and I do not want to go back tomorrow. Although part of me needs the routine again. For some reason, it’s so much easier to eat better when I’m working…at least in the office. I never go out for lunch, so will eat what I bring…and it’s usually something healthy.

It will be tough this month with all the treats that will appear, but I plan to stay out of them. At least most of the time. I need to remember that they usually aren’t all that good. And tasty or not, I never feel better for having eaten them.

Today, being December 1, starts my plan to get me through the rest of the year. I weighed in today and am 259.7 pounds. ACK! I want to get back to 253, which is 30 pounds down from my heaviest, and maintain it through the month. I can do it, but it will take diligence and a lot of self-control.

Here are my goals for the month. They take the holidays into consideration so I don’t have to be perfect 100% of the time, but should keep me on track enough to have some success.

~ drink 10 glasses (80 ounces) of water every day

~ exercise for at least 10 minutes at least 5 days each week

~ log calories at least 5 days each week, and stay within my MyFitnessPal calorie range

~ do a 60 second (modified) plank every day

I have decided not to do a strict food plan for now. BUT, I need to log what I’m eating most of the time. This will allow me to enjoy in moderation. And my “off” days don’t mean they’re a free-for-all. It just means I don’t need to log my food because it gets to be overwhelming at times. Yes, I will likely go over those days, but I will also pay attention to what I’m eating.

I hope this works because I do NOT want to gain this month. I want to end this year feeling good about my accomplishments, and start 2014 off with a bang.

Early Morning

I was up by 5am this morning. I might need a nap later! I am already tired and the coffee isn’t kicking in. But still, I am enjoying this quiet time before the crazy kids are up.

Marcus is deer hunting for the weekend, so I have to feed cows. It’s not something I especially enjoy, since I need to get up to do it before kids are up. There is nothing like trying to feed cows in a dark shed (the flashlight only gives off so much light!) when I’m not all that familiar with the process. This year I thought about waiting until daylight and making the kids come with me. Kody is now 2 1/2 and I think he would stand still and not freak the cows out. But, none of the kids wanted to come with me, so I told them I would try to get up early. And I did. For today anyway. Tomorrow could be another story.

One thing I’ve noticed…even though I am currently feeling really fat and gross (must get my eating under control), I am definitely seeing improvements in my fitness. Two years ago when I had to feed cows for the first time, it was really hard to lift those 5 gallon buckets full of feed up to about my shoulders. And the big step up into the shed was difficult and I had to find something to help pull myself up. Last year, 8 pounds lighter, and I could tell it was a bit easier. This year, roughly 30 pounds lighter, and it’s almost easy. Lifting the pails really isn’t an issue. Climbing into the shed still takes some effort, but it is a lot easier than it was last year. I’m kind of excited to note my progress next year.

The other day I mentioned the plan challenge I’ve been doing. Yesterday I was supposed to do 90 seconds. By 45 or 50 seconds, I’m struggling, so thought there was no way I’d make it to 90. While I was doing it yesterday, I wanted to give it my best shot. I didn’t want to give up just because I thought it would be impossible. So…I stuck it out. After 60 seconds, it was REALLY hard. It’s not like my abs or anything really hurt, but it was just really, really hard. Somehow, I held on and make it all 90 seconds! Wow! I can hardly believe it! I really don’t know that I can do longer than that. I will still continue the challenge though. I might keep it at 90 seconds, but I still think that’s great! After the 30 days, I’ll have to try a real plank again and see if I have made any improvement.

Yesterday my sister and I went to the Mall of America for our annual shopping day. Luckily we didn’t get much snow the night before and roads were fine. We had a great time, although I always wish we had more time. Even though we’re always ready to go after walking around each floor, it would be nice to spend more time together. We’re talking about doing more with our kids too…it’s been awhile with all my overtime, plus she has numerous jobs so is also very busy. But anyway, I got 10,000 steps yesterday…easily! I was thrilled with that!

It sounds like kids are starting to stir. And here ends my quiet time until they’re in bed tonight. 🙂

Week 3: Back to Reality

Work is back to normal hours! WOOHOO!!

Last weekend was wonderfully relaxing. The kids stayed with my in-laws Friday night and Marcus and I headed to our hotel that night. We enjoyed a nice dinner (I got a yummy salad) and slept in a bit on Saturday. We had the entire day to do whatever we wanted. We did a lot of driving, and a nice amount of wandering around poking into shops here and there. We even found Christmas gifts for both our moms! We had a really nice time and didn’t argue or bicker once. It was more like the old days. Before kids. Don’t get me wrong, we love our kids and are grateful to have them. But it was also really nice to enjoy some time together. We definitely need to do more of that.

Life is s l o w l y getting back to normal. Whatever normal is! Evenings are still busy, of course, with the kids. But at least I don’t have to work after they’re in bed. Now I can attempt to keep up on dishes (we don’t have a dishwasher) or relax in front of the TV. I’m looking forward to getting back into reading before bed too.

I suppose now is as good a time as any to report my weigh-in for the week. I didn’t eat well all weekend, but have been basically back on track since Monday. I somehow managed to lose .4 lb this week. I’ll take it!! Now I need to keep this up and I should see a nice loss next week. I need to pick up the pace here if I want to fit into my wedding dress next October.

I am back to doing my wii Biggest Loser workout. I do the shortest workout I can (for now) and it’s helping me get back into the routine. I’m not sure how much jogging I’ll be doing outside this winter, so I need something else that I know I will do. I also set a goal that I will do when I work at home once a week. My fitbit pedometer records flights of stairs. The most I had previously gotten was 25 flights, which I thought was pushing it. But last week I decided to go for the next badge, or “sticker”, and go for 50 flights. I did it and it wasn’t too bad! So I did it again this week. I plan to do that once a week. I’ll have some killer thighs and buns before too long! haha!

Next week is a short week for me, then I am taking a FULL WEEK off of work! I haven’t done that since I have been at this job (nearly 9 years), other than maternity leave which does NOT count. The kids have school and daycare, and I am beyond excited for this Me Time. I desperately need it. One day my sister and I will have our annual shopping trip, and the rest will be filled with household chores, miscellaneous projects, possibly painting, and relaxing. I cannot wait!!

I promise to catch up with all of you soon. I have fallen behind on my blog reading and miss all of you!

A little relief

It has been a nice weekend.

I woke up early yesterday and got to work. I was at my computer working by 5:30 am! I was able to get 2 solid hours of work in, then since Marcus was home, I went for a walk/jog. That was exactly what I needed. Even though I haven’t done much jogging lately, I can tell I have more stamina. I pushed myself to run my longest distance to date. Then I did more walking/jogging intervals than I usually do. The more jogging I did, the more I could literally feel the stress leaving my body. Today I woke up a bit sore. My legs, back, and even my stomach are feeling it! And it feels great!

Then I had to help the kids pack for their overnight at their aunt’s house. I got them off, then it was back to work for a couple more hours. Marcus and his dad were harvesting soy beans, so it was quiet. I got quite a bit done and am feeling better about where my work project is. It’s far from over, but it doesn’t feel quite so unmanageable.

When Marcus got inside, we enjoyed some pizza, wine, and a movie. Not healthy choices, but it was enjoyable. We recently got Amazon Prime and watched The Negotiator last night. It was a good movie. It must be old though, because we were laughing at the old computers! I just looked it up…it’s from 1998.

This morning was wonderful to wake up on my own, and not to immediate chaos. I love my kids, but sometimes I need this, and my marriage needs this. It has been refreshing.

I am already working and trying to make the best use of my time. I’ll be off for a walk/jog in a little bit. Even though I’m crazy busy, I need to find a way to jog when I can. It’s only 36 degrees out now, but my body will warm up quickly. I plan to continue this into the winter as long as there isn’t lots of snow or ice on my path.

I’m counting down. Three to four weeks left of crazy hours! I’m getting there!

Day 23: a little exercise

In one week, I will be on my final day of my Healthy 30! I have been struggling a bit the past few days, but it’s not that I’m craving “bad” foods or anything. The scale just isn’t moving like it was, but I know I need to be patient and stick with this. I am still hoping to lose 15 pounds by the end of my challenge.

I got home from work last night, and the house was quiet. With three kids, that is extremely rare! The girls were playing nicely upstairs, and Marcus and Kody were just hanging out. So I took advantage of it and went for a quick walk. The girls had their first Girl Scout meeting a little later, so I couldn’t be gone long.

I can’t remember the last time I went for a walk, so it was refreshing and a very much needed stress reliever! I did a little jogging, which really helps with my stress level. I’m finding I almost enjoy jogging. I want to find a way to exercise a little bit here and there while work is so busy. But I also know how exhausting the work hours get, so I’m not banking on it. For sure in November I will get into a routine. I hate putting it off, but I’m realistic. And hey, I’m eating great. That’s a HUGE step for me!

My house is also quite filthy these days. It’s embarrassing, really. I need to work on teaching the kids how to do some of this stuff so they can help out a little bit.

On today’s menu…

Breakfast – coffee with creamer, chocolate strawberry smoothie

Lunch – small bowl of chili, and a lettuce salad

Snacks – yogurt or boiled egg or celery with natural peanut butter

Supper – onion, pepper, egg scramble. We have LOTS of freshly laid eggs from Marcus’s parents!