Friday, September 30, 2011

Does the "before" picture have to be so big?

So today was a good day :-)

Last night I checked the Huffington Post and saw my Before and After shots.  My stomach flipped.  Let me start by saying that I had been putting off posting pictures to this blog because as honest as I am being with you, I did not want to face those pictures.  At the time, I loved that picture.  I thought I looked great.  Now I wince.  DELUSIONAL!  Did you notice the baby propped on my lap?  Yeah, I spent most of my sitting time with a kid, pillow, or stuffed animal on my lap.  You know, to hide the fat.  hahahaha.  DELUSIONAL.

I wanted to check the site as soon as I woke up this morning, but of course the first thing I saw on the news was a huge accident.  I believe the phrase used was "You want to be anywhere, but there".  Um...there is where I needed to be.  So I hurried to get ready and ran out the door.  My mom called on my way in to tell me it was posted.  Actually she left a voicemail. Wanna hear it?  "Hey Jennie, it's mom.  I just googled Confessions of a former fat girl and Huffington Post and there you were.  You look so beautiful.  I'm so proud.  Where are you? In the Shower?  CALL ME!"  The tears formed immediately.

As excited as I was to do this, I was also nervous as all heck.  This is unbelievable exposure.  What if the Haters start in?  I am opening myself up to so much, and it's not all good.  Guess what.  All I've gotten is positive comments.  YEAH! 

I wanted to look nice today obviously.  So of course I lightened my hair last night (just in case you can see me) and I wore the new sweater today. You remember the sweater. The one that I tried on in a large and my aunt convinced me to try on the medium.  YEAH that one :-)  It's cute, but is comes to my waist.  This is still awkward for me.  For most of my life my sweaters came down to my butt.  I needed to cover up.  Now I'm not gonna lie.  I did not wear my new skinny jeans with it. They are a little too tight for me to be comfortable showing that.  I wore the "I need a belt" jeans (but I still can't find that dang belt).

To celebrate the day we went out to lunch.  We went to Saladworks. Have you been?  It was awesome.  It was my first time.  I had the Autumn Harvest salad and the Fajitalicious half sandwich.  They don't quite compliment each other, but they were tasty.  And I resisted the cookie a the register (those devils).

For dinner I met my friends and their kids at Chuck E Cheese's.  Um...I did not know about this until I was on my way.  But, I adore these kids so I will go.  Yes, I had two small pieces of pizza.  But, they equal about the size of one slice and when I came home I made a salad to balance it out.

I did not work out today because it was my scheduled day off and I am hitting the track in the morning for two hours. My foot is feeling all better and I am ready to step it up.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on twitter: @hugsnsmile

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Why you can do it too!

Hello beautiful people,

My heart is full tonight.  I stopped at the park after work for a 3 mile walk (only got to do 2 at lunch because I had to make a pit stop at Old Navy...HUGE Sweater sale!) and the place was packed full of walkers.  It was so great.  Young. Old.  Pairs.  Singles.  Moms with kids.  Grandfathers with grandkids.  It was beautiful. 

You can do it too.  That's what I'm trying to tell you.  I did not do this at a gym (I did start at one, but it was only for a year).  I did not do this with a trainer.  I did not do this with an eating program. I did this because I changed my life style.

Now I'm not saying that you should use any of those.  They are extremely helpful and maybe you need them to keep you in check and motivate you.  What I'm saying is that you can make the changes just by altering your habits.

It's not going to be easy. I'm not going to lie to you.  You're going to need to make big changes, but it's so worth it in the end.  When it comes to working out keep it consistent.  For me I would start something and plan on doing it 3 days a week.  And then I would find that I was missing it on those other days so I would extend it to 4 days a week and then 5.  I did this with workout dvds (Love the Biggest Loser ones..Hi Bob!) and with walking.  I have heard many times that you need to do something for 21 days in order to make it a habit.  So true.  So try it for three weeks. 

What does this mean?  Well if you are over extended and very busy, you will have to drop something.  It's that simple.  You may not like it, but tough.  If you are a couch potato and need motivation you're going to have to suck it up.  But, I can work with that.  Get a step or a stationary bike and plop it in front of the tv.  Work on it through your favorite show.  I had a 3 month period when I would get out the step and watch Sex and the City.  I was focusing so hard on the show that I barely noticed that I was exercising for a half hour. 

So now lets talk food.  I think this is the tougher one.  When you alter your intake you will no longer crave things.  It's true.  I heart chocolate!  I do.  But, if I avoid it for a week it's easier to say No.  When I first started the South Beach diet I thought I was going to die.  They want you to cut out caffeine. That first weekend I took my Godson to the movies.  I got a Sprite and promptly fell asleep.  How was I going to go through life without caffeine?  It took a long time, but I'm used to it now.

Make your meals count.  Don't rush through them.  Give them a thought.  Don't just stop somewhere fast because it's convenient.  Keep your kitchen stocked with healthy options.  Cut out the fast food. 

I've said it once and I'll say it again: PLAN AHEAD!  Sit down on Sunday night and look at your weekly schedule. Put in workouts.  Plan your meals.  And enjoy the new healthier you!

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.  

Who wants a Fat President?

There has been a lot of political stuff annoying me lately.  I prefer to leave political affiliations out of this blog.  It doesn't matter what my political preferences are, Fat knows no boundaries.

I just can't let this go though.  The Governor of New Jersey is all over the news.  Will he or won't he run?  The whether or not he is a good candidate should be based on his record, but all I'm hearing about is his weight.  COME ON! 

Last night the news had a guy walking around with pictures of him and the two other leading candidates and asked people what they thought about their appearances (and the voiceover mentioned him versus the "attractive" candidates).  Now let it be told that his picture was a little bigger than the others and in his he was raising his arm and talking while the others were not. Every person they showed said he was "Fat".  At least that's what they showed on the news anyway. Shame on you FOX 29!

The late night hosts are going nuts with their jokes.  And you know how I feel about fat jokes.  This is insane.  It's not like he's conducting press conferences with a turkey leg in one and and a hamhock in the other.  He has admitted that he has an eating problem.  Let it go.

Think about it though, they aren't just joking about him. They aren't just asking the public what their opinion is about him.  They are referring to every fat person in America. What any fat kid is hearing is that they shouldn't be President because of their weight.  So when you're laughing at those jokes, just remember that there could be an awesome kid that would make the best world leader in thirty years, but won't take a chance because s/he's is afraid of being laughed at.

Now for the worst part, my confession.  My first thought when I saw that he may run: I don't want a fat President.  I hate that I thought that.  I truly do.  I'm not trying to justify my reaction, but I am so focused on taking care of myself and trying to get others to do the same, that it's hard for me to put faith in someone who abuses their own body.  That job is stressful enough without the health problems that come with the weight.

It's fine to have your opinion about this, but is it really newsworthy?  

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on witter: @hugsnsmile

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Listen to your body

The last two nights were rough.  The top of my right foot has been really sore.  So much so that I had a hard time falling asleep.  Coincidence that I have the new socks and these were my 8 mile days?  I think not.  Damn, I'm going to have to lose the socks for walking.

Because I want to sleep tonight I decided to take today off from walking.  Besides, the forecast was for rain so I had already planned on an oil change after work.  I decided to treat myself and go to Starbucks for lunch and do a little reading.  I'd been neglecting it for a while.

** Side note - I'm reading Jen Lancaster's Bitter Is the New Black and it's hilarious. Her writing style is like mine!  So there's hope that I could actually get published some day...everyone cross your fingers**

Anyway, you know Starbucks is my drug of choice.  I've been pretty good lately of getting a Tall if I'm not getting a "skinny" drink.  So I got my Tall Vanilla Chai Latte and read a little.  It was awesome.  It was just the relaxation I needed.

Funny thing happened though.  When I got back to my desk there were two suspicious items on my desk.  Someone went to Gertrude Hawk and brought me some goodies!  Donna, you know I love you for this!  I have seriously avoided chocolate for weeks. And if you're going to have chocolate go for the good stuff.

So now I had Starbucks, a chocolate bar (that was eaten WAY too fast), and I wasn't going to be walking.  Argh.  On my way to the oil change the skies opened up and I considered going to walk.  I had to force myself to Pep Boys.  I can't believe I had to talk myself out of exercising.  But, I need to rest the foot.  :-(

I was told the oil change would take about an hour.  No problem, I brought a book.  Oh is that Jillian Michaels on Redbook?  I picked it up and read a great article.  I will share some fun stuff later.  And then saw a bunch of great recipes.  I will share them too.  Two hours later I finally left.  Normally I don't care.  But, I was hungry and I still had to pack my lunch.  BAH.  I was a little punchy when I got home, but I made my dinner and my lunch. AND then I lifted some weights :-)

I still can't believe that I feel bad when I don't get my workouts in.  Kind of cool.  And I know I stress consistency and planning ahead, but you do also need to give your body a rest.  Your muscles need to rest and rebuild.

It's also important to listen to your body.  There's "tired" and there's "exhausted".  You can push through the "tired", but if you are truly "exhausted" (not drama queen exhausted and I will call you out on it so don't even try to BS me on this) then don't try.  If you are "sore" you can push through it, but if you are "hurt" you need to rest.  Listen to your body, not your head.  

Now if you will excuse me, I need to go get some ice because I am anticipating a good walk at lunch tomorrow.  T-Minus 2 months and 11 days to go.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.  

Biggest Loser - Episode Two

The Dreaded Week Two.

Generally after the big loss during Week One the body reacts and slows it down during week two.  In the past they they have challenged that if the whole group loses a certain amount than no one goes home.  This week they limited their times in the gym.  WHAT?  During week two?  Are they insane?

The teams were limited to two hours in the gym a day and it was the same time every day.  One had the 5am slot.  One had the 12pm slot.  And one had the 9pm slot.  I would lose it if I had to workout at 9pm.  Now I'm sure that when they weren't at the gym they were outside walking.  These numbers were too good.

In addition to this week's twist, they also met with the doctors.  I hate to say it, but this is always my favorite episode.  This is when it sinks in.  Being fat isn't just unattractive. It is UNHEALTHY.  High blood pressure.  High cholesterol.  Diabetes.  Heart disease.  Bad joints.  Fat around the lungs.  They did not show enough of it this week.  If the slothiness on the treadmill doesn't trigger the 'A-HA' moment, it should be the trip to the doctor.  You are killing yourself and you don't even care.  This week, one of the younger contestants learned he is diabetic.  He is diabetic and he did not know it!  That's even worse.

One of my favorite moments was the weigh in of one of the girls with a knee injury.  This hit home.  When my knees were totally busted I could do nothing.  If only I had Bob.  He modified her workouts and she pulled a big number.  YOU GO GIRL!

Here's the good thing.  Fitness and nutrition will help.  TA DA.  You don't need all of the medicine, you just need to treat yourself right.  There you go.  That's how you do it.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Another Left Turn

This weekend I am going to the Nascar Sprint Cup Race in Dover.  I could not be more excited.  I love a day at the track.  But, I can't help thinking about the first race in Dover that I went to ten years ago.

My dad got us tickets for the May race.  Good tickets.  In Racing Good tickets equals HIGH tickets.  We started the day parking about 800 miles away.  Okay, it was only about a mile and a half, but it might as well have been 800.  The track is huge and it looked like this tiny thing from the car.  It felt like the longest walk in the world.  Seriously, we were never going to make it.

In addition to watching a great race, you are allowed to bring a cooler and a bag to the track.  So that walk felt even worse because I was carrying a cooler and a bag.  It was torture. I just wanted to get to my seat and sit for hours.  Oh, but that was not going to happen for a little while.

Outside of the track are hundreds of trailers with merchandise and fried food.  I wanted to shop!  I wanted to eat! I got my hat (because I was too fat to fit in the Women's shirts) and probably a pound of fries. Then we walked to our seats.  Hahaha.  Do you remember when I said my seat was High?  My stomach plummeted when I saw the stairs.  It was about six flights of stairs.  I had to pull over 3 times.  My heart was racing.  My knees were weak.  I couldn't breathe.

I did not drink anything during the race.  I was petrified of having to go down those steps to the bathroom.  I was not making it back up.  It was horrible.  You would think the walk down at the end of the race would have been better.  But, it wasn't.  I had to pull over for that too.  I was so embarrassed and mad at myself.  When I got to the bottom I took a deep breath and sighed with relief.  And then it hit me.  We still had to walk back to the car.

I loved the race, but I will tell you right now that my weight made it a miserable experience.  It didn't stop me from going again, but it did make me modify my trips.  Park closer and carry less.  Buy food there.  These are the WRONG choices.

This weekend we will be parking as far away as possible.  We will load our coolers with healthy sandwiches, snacks, and water.  We will get there extra early and lap around the track twice (Yes Heather I am talking to you :-).  I want my miles in.  This time I welcome the steps (we got the good seats!).  I may get up and go walk them just for the heck of it during caution laps.  This is my first race with the "New" me and I could not be more excited.  Well, I could...Tony Stewart if you are reading this CALL ME!

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support. 

Suck it up!

My legs hurt. I'm tired. My feet hurt.  I deserve a break. I'm getting old.  I did really well yesterday so I should just rest today.  You're going to come in last anyway, so why bother pushing it.

These are the thoughts going through my head this morning.  This is what I face every day.  No matter how well I am doing. No matter how many positive comments I receive.  No matter how well my body is responding.  No matter how good my butt is looking.  No matter that I have committed to training...the Former Fat Girl in me just wants me to be a slug.  It sucks.  I fear that this is going to be a daily battle for the rest of my life.  That no matter how fit I get, she will be trying to bring me down.  I'm really starting to hate her.  When the heck is the Fit Girl going to knock her out?

I had a good day yesterday.  I walked a lot.  I found a half-marathon partner!  YEAH AMIE! I found out about the Huffington Post (the feature will be this friday!  I will let you know where to go).  I started planning my weekend at the Race (more on that later).  And yet today my brain is not cooperating.  My feet hurt.  My legs are sore.  I can push past that.  But, darn that brain. It failed me on Sunday and now it's trying to sabotage myself. 

Sometimes I wonder about that.  Deep down do I really want to keep the weight?  I don't know myself as anything else.  Am I afraid of who I will become?  Am I afraid of losing myself?  To me it is the only explaination.

The good news is that after I wrote all of that I forced myself to go walk at the mall.  And I stress FORCED.  I knew I would be mad at myself later if I didn't.  I can rest on my planned day of Friday.  As tired as I was, my body totally responded to my music.  I kept up my usual pace even though for the first 3 laps I was dogging it.  Then, as it does every time, as soon as I hit the halfway mark my brain got happy and went with it.  I was still tired, but I wasn't fighting it anymore.  GO ME!

And my reward was that my arms looked amazing in the store window reflections.  I mean I was Excited!  I used to be the girl wearing the long sleeves.  Now, I will cut them off!  Give me the sleeveless and marvel at my arms (I am particularly proud of my shoulders thank you very much :-).

Now, I still want to walk tonight so there will be another internal battle on the way to the park.  The Fat girl will say "You already walked what more do you want?".  But, I must counter with "It's going to rain tomorrow so I can rest then."  See it's all about planning ahead.

I did see a sweater on sale that I started salivating over during my walk today.  So I made a deal with myself.  If I can put in two more 8 mile days this week than I may go buy it.  I'm planning on three days, but I'll be happy with two.  This is my biggest week yet and I don't want to damage myself.  (I walk hard and my foot really is sore on the top)

So give yourself an incentive.  Is there something you want?  Then wait until you meet a goal to go get it.  When you work hard for it you will appreciate it just that much more.

Our lesson today is: Don't let anyone tell you that you can't do something.  Especially yourself. Do not let You tell you that you can't do it.  Because you are WRONG!  You can!  Just Suck It Up and get moving!
Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile

Monday, September 26, 2011

Why I want to compete in a Half Marathon

Since I have opened up and shared this dream of mine it is pretty much all I can think about.  I want it so bad I can taste it.  I have thought about it for a couple of years now.  And now that I have put it out there I know for sure I am going to do it.

I did some research and found one in December at the beach in Delaware.  At first I was in a panic.  Will I be ready?  Just how cold will it be?  Am I crazy to think I can do this?  What if I come in last?

Since there is a Marathon at the same time the maximum time for both is 7 hours. My pace is around 3.5 hours.  I have only ever completed 10 miles though.  I want to do this because at the end of my 10 miles I was not tired.  I only stopped because I ran out of water.  Once I push through the mental block I know I can do this.

When you think about where I started five years ago I could barely walk one mile on the treadmill.  That made me weep.  I used to walk all over NYC and DC.  And there I was getting winded and cramping during one mile.  I have come a long way since then.  I am a new person.  And this new person doesn't want to give up.

I can actually picture myself crossing that finish line. I could not do that before.  And truth be told, I start crying when I think about it.  I would love to have a group of people at the finish line to cheer me on. So if you are free on Saturday December 10 and want to go to the beach, please come on down. And make me a big pretty sign :-) Or if you want to walk with me Please do so (remember my legs are short and it's a 4mph pace...although I'm hoping I can pick it up a little).

Having this as a goal is going to motivate me through the holiday time.  You know what I'm talking about..that dangerous time.  So I will amend another previous statement.  I had said that 5Ks don't interest me. But, if you need one as a motivation to get moving and want a walking buddy for it then please email me.  If you don't mind putting me up on your couch I will be happy to come walk with you :-)  We can beat those holiday pounds together!

Okay, so now for the tricky part.  I know I can train and condition my body, but can I make the financial commitment?  The fee is $100.  I am doing this for me, but I will be thinking of you.  So, if you want to donate $10 to the cause I would be happy to give you a shout out :-)  If you have an event coming up that you want to promote I will post it in the blog (I'm global you know). I am not above pandering to the masses. 

I have a plan in place for this. I need to step up the walking.  I won't rest with just 3 miles a day.  Every weekend will need to include at least a 10 mile walk.  So if I am visiting you on the weekend please keep this in mind. Once a month I will attempt the full distance (actually longer because I don't want to be tired on that last mile). My first attempt will be in two weeks.

I know there are certain things I need to work on besides the walking:

My Concerns:
*Walking in the COLD
*Conditioning my body for water every two miles (I drink constantly while I walk)
*Does this mean no more pedicures until the race? I am serious. I don't want raw feet.
*Can I walk that early in the morning?
*What do I eat for breakfast?
*What happens if my nose starts to run?
*Using the port-o-johns if I have to pee
*Which of my sneakers will get the honors? (I think I'll want to bronze them when I am done :-)
*What happens when it's dark after work and I can't walk in the park? (if you know of a track that keeps it's lights on for the public in the Delaware County area please let me know).
*What songs need to be cut from the playlist?  (I don't want to slow down at all)
*What will I wear?  They provide a shirt (which I will wear just about every day after if I can actually complete this), but what pants?
 *Will I be able to get up early enough and make it?  My big fear is being late.

 I realized today that I don't care if I finish last.  As long as I finish.  And I have no doubt that I will.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support. 

I walked 8 miles in a dress today. What did you do?

 Happy Monday!

Alright, so I kind of skirted the confessions yesterday.  So here it goes:

My Aunt and Grandmom were going to be leaving around lunch time so I decided early on not to workout in the morning.  Visiting with Grandmom is just more important.  So I got up early to go to church and when I got home dad was ready to make breakfast for everyone.  Eggs and Bacon.  So hard to say no to that.

They got on the road a little early and I still had over an hour to kill before any of the games came on.  I could have gone and worked out after all, but I had already showered so I just picked up the laptop and got to work.  Soon it was lunch time and I was hungry...what to have...what to have...Well they had made my favorite for me before I got there and I had not had any so I had some Friday Spaghetti (Egg noodles, Stewed Tomatoes, and Mozzarella).  I had a small bowl full and that was it.  Not too bad.  But then I heard my name...there was a cheesecake in the fridge that I did not know about.  What do you know, it was calling Dad's name too.  Small pieces, but  I still had some.

For some reason I got stupid and forgot to drink water before my drive home.  So I was sorely lacking in vegetables and water and now I was about to sit in my car for three hours.  Apparently my brain turns stupid on game day.   

Trying to rectify the situation I filled my water bottle and got on the road.  About halfway home I stopped at the Super Walmart to pick up some veggies.  I was craving them like something awful.  I picked up some baby carrots to munch on for the rest of the ride and headed to the check out.  You know how I feel about the checkouts.  Chips.  Candy.  Combos.  Chocolate.  I'm hungry.  This is not the place for me, but I could NOT find an open aisle that didn't have them.  Shame on you Walmart!  What I did find was a small container of goldfish.  It's so freakin cute.  Looks like a little milk carton.  Excellent!  That's a decent snack for the ride home and the perfect portion.  You know if I bought the regular bag I could eat the whole dang thing.  This is two servings at 140 calories each.  Please note: serving size is 55 fish.  hahaha  I stuff at least 15 in my mouth at a time.  I gotta work on that.  Of course if you see me eat them at my desk, you also know that my OCD goes nuts with them and I line them up in squares and eat them.  You can laugh.  It's okay.

When I got home I was tired and I was hungry.  I needed to unload, unpack, and get ready for the Sunday night game.  Lest we not forget though, I still needed to eat and pack my lunch.  I did that first. You know how I feel about waiting.  I made a turkey burger with guacamole and green beans for dinner and inhaled about a gallon of water.  Ahhh...making it all better.

Today was a good day.  A REAL good day.  Totally beats last Monday.

I walked three miles at lunch and was prepared to walk at least three more after work in the park. When I got to the park I decided to push for four.  The problem was that I was wearing a dress.  But, I am committed and nothing will stop me!  So I pushed it for four...and then threw in another mile for kicks.  That's right.  I rocked the 8 miles today in a dress.  Take that chub rub!  My pace was still at 4mph the whole time and I was pretty excited until some little snot nosed kindergartner came blowing past me.  Where the hell did she come from?  **I know she's probably a nice kid, it just threw me off**  It doesn't matter.  I'm in this for the long haul.  I really really want to take on this Half-Marathon so I am not in it for speed.  I'm in it for the endurance.

Now last week I had sent my story and blog link to the Huffington Post after I saw a story that reminded me of me.  Today they emailed that they would like to feature my story. I could not be more excited!  The only problem is that I need to provide a before and after shot.  I'm all over taking a good after shot, it's the before that's giving me pause.  Ugh.  I will do it though.  I'm in this to motivate and inspire.  Wish me luck.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The numbers you won't like

Let's break it down.  Once I actually comprehended the following numbers, I really started to take my food intake and fitness regime seriously:

Every 3500 calories you eat = 1lb
The average adult calorie intake should be approximately 2000 calories a day.

Here are some calories for you:
Big Mac - 540
McDonalds medium Fries - 330 (are you upsizing that?)
Burger King Whopper - 670
1 slice of plain cheese pizza - 300
Cookies and Cream milkshake Chick-Fil-A - 770
Glazed donut - 360
1 cup Kraft Macaroni and Cheese - 260
Apple Crumb donut - 490
Auntie Anne's original pretzel - 340
Wawa Soft pretzel - 300
Taco Bell Chicken quesadilla - 540
Grande Double chocolatey Chip frappacino - 500
Tomato and Mozzarella Panini - 770
Hot wings - 50-100 per wing 
Mozzarella sticks - 80ea
Snickers bar - 266
Hershey mini bars - 40 each (they are bite size and you KNOW you don't eat just one)
12oz can of coke - 150 (how many are you having in a day?)

When you look at these numbers you might think: Oh that's not so bad.  But seriously, are you stopping at one donut?  What else are you eating with that Whopper?  How many hot wings are you eating in one sitting?  It adds up.  And if you're eating so much crap, you probably aren't burning that many calories.

Please do not read this as if I am saying you can eat a Big Mac every day as long as you stay under the 2000 calories.  That's crazy talk.  That's full of fat and grease and nothing nutritional about it.  And if you try to tell there is lettuce, grain and dairy I will knock you out.  That's exactly the kind of thinking that got you where you are.  You need to eat right!  You can indulge in these tasty treats, but watch how often you are doing it.  If you are eating a donut every day you are just consuming empty calories.  For what?  It's not worth it.

How many calories do you burn in a mile?  Based on a 180lb person you burn approximately 100 calories per mile. That means you have to walk 3 miles to burn off one soft pretzel.  I walk 4 mph.  That's 45 minutes to burn off ONE soft pretzel.

Go check out the website of your favorite place to eat.  They will list the nutritional values.  You may have to search for it, but it's there.  Check out what you eat. Then go to the website listed below and put in your weight and activity time.  It will calculate how many calories you are burning. I put in 30 minutes and learned that 30 minutes of housecleaning burns 126 calories.  That's not even 3 hot wings.  I guarantee you will learn that you are not burning as much as you thought.  I'm sorry, but it's true.

Check out this website to see how many calories are in your restaurant food:

Check out this website to see how many calories you burn:

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support. 

Season's 52 - Part 2 (Recipes)

I hope I took good enough notes.  Now please note, it is a restaurant so I am sure they didn't share all of their goodies (sauces and spices), but you can experiment.  Please let me know if you try them.  Here are the basics:

Duck Salad
                -Cranberries (dried or fresh)
                -Butternut squash
                -minced ginger
                -Jicama (good thing I looked it up…I was spelling it Hickama...this is a vegetable)
                -toasted pecans
                -lettuce (they weren’t specific about the type but I think a spring mix was used)
                -Sesame dressing
How to cut the Jicama (I have asked around and if you live in the northeast you may be able to find it at Giant and/or Wegmans)
                *Cut off the bottom so that you have a flat surface and it doesn’t wobble
                *Cut it in half and then make small slices.  You can peel it first or cut the skin off that way
                *Cut in long thin strips or dice it
                *eat raw
How to prepare the butternut squash
*Cut the “bowl” off.  That part has the seeds.  Scoop out the seeds (they can be toasted like   pumpkin seeds)
*Slice off the skin and dice into small pieces.  You can do this with both sides.
                *Spray with olive oil, minced ginger, and salt and pepper
                *Bake at 350degrees for ten minutes
All things Duck
                *Duck is a very healthy choice if the fat is cut off
                *Cook in the pan or the grill 3-4 minutes on both sides
                *Marinate in Char Siu (Asian dressing)
                *Good to use within two days of cooking.  Otherwise it gets gummy
                *Cook until it is medium rare and then cool in the fridge
                I’m not sure I got this all…you can use a sesame dressing or try this:
                                Olive oil
                                Sesame seeds
                                Miso paste (found in the frozen section)
                I would just buy a dressing.  Sorry.
Mix the lettuce, cranberries, pecans, jicama, and butternut squash together.  Add the duck to the top and then add the dressing around the side of the bowl.
Voila!  An awesome salad.
Cucumber Salad – Asian style
                -Kosher Salt
                -Sweet Chili Sauce
                -Red chili flakes
                -Rice Wine Vinegar
It’s going to sound weird, but you use 8oz of salt for 4lbs of cucumbers. Remember, this is a restaurant recipe.  I sure as heck don’t have 4lbs of cucumbers laying around.
Slice the cucumber very thin.  Sprinkle the salt all over it and let it sit for 10 minutes.  This will pull the excess water out of the cucumber.  Then rinse them.  Let them dry and then mix with the chili sauce, chili flakes, and rice wine vinegar.  Not large portions of each.  It’s just to flavor the cucumbers.
And serve.
Scallops with Pearl Pasta
                -Olive Oil
                -Pearl Pasta (cous cous)
                -cooked mushrooms/tomatoes (optional)
All things Scallops
                *If you buy it frozen then let them sit out a couple of days on paper towels to dry out
                *Season with salt and pepper right before you cook
                *Use a spray bottle with your olive oil and spray the pan
                *wait until it starts to smoke before putting the Scallops in the pan
                *do not overcrowd the pan
                *cook until both sides are brown
***I have a note about wine sauce, but I don’t have full information on it.  I am not a scallop person so I zoned out just a little.
Pearl Pasta (Cous Cous)
*This is a larger style of cous cous.  I believe she said it’s Israeli style and can be found in pasta     or International aisle.
                *cook with mushrooms/tomatoes sparingly
                *spices (looked like basil or rosemary)
                *the Skinnier –medium size
                *Blanche first (inboiling water with salt for 3 minutes)
                *Sear in the pan with olive oil and salt/pepper
Broiled Lemon
                *Cut the lemon in half and broil for 2 minute
Prepare the plate:
*Arrange the Asparagus
*Place the Pearl Pasta on top
*Place the Scallops on top of the Pasta
*Put the lemon on the side

I hope you enjoy :-)

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile

Saturday, September 24, 2011

My day(s) off...and I'm not talking about work

My walking has been good for the past two days, but my eating has not been the best :-(

Yesterday I was doing so well.  I knew I was going out to dinner and going away for the weekend so I had packed a nice big salad for lunch and was going to walk the mall during my lunch our.  Check.  Alright so far. Alert!  Alert!  Alert!  It's time to celebrate the September birthdays!  CAKE!  I love it.  I hate it.  I love it.  I hate it.

I cannot say no to cake.  It's that simple.  I can't.  I was not prepared for this. Usually I get a heads up, but this was a surprise.  Fine.  I'll have a piece.  And I'll like it!  I walked. I ate a salad.  It's all good.  For dinner I was meeting friends at Chick-Fil-A.  Hadn't been there since the first day of the blog and this time I was not going to keep the wrong chicken!  I didn't have to send it back. They gave me the right grilled chicken sandwich...and my waffle fries. SHHHH!    Cake and waffle fries in one day.  Normally I would beat myself up and just correct my mistakes the next day...but, I'm not going be home all weekend. Bah!

So this morning I got up and went to walking. I had a cereal bar before I went.  I walked my five miles and came home to the smell of scrapple.  My knees went weak.  Yes, I had two eggs and two pieces of scrapple...and a banana!  I grabbed a protein bar a little while later before heading out to go shopping.

Here's my good news for the day.  I went to Old Navy for their nice 75% off your second item sale.  Why?  Cause I needed new jeans.  That' right.  My jeans were literally falling off of me yesterday.  My Skinny jeans were falling off of me!  Can I get a Holla?!? Heck yeah, that is awesome.  Since I started the blog I have dropped a pant size.  So thank you all for the kind words and motivation.  I picked up two new jeans in a size that I totally skipped over on the way up.  I'm in single digits yo!

Next we went to Dress barn and they are having a sweater sale.  I found a really cute sweater that I wanted to try on. My initial reaction: I need to try on the large.  That medium looks small.  I tried on the large and it fit, but my Aunt encouraged me to try on the medium.  And guess what!  It looked even better than the large.  GO ME!  I'm still having a hard time going straight to the sizes that actually fit me.  I always pull my old sizes first.  At least I'm not still grabbing the XXL.

It was a good shopping day :-)  But, it was closing in on dinner time and we were HUNGRY.  It's grandma's birthday weekend and we had promised her a cheesesteak soft pretzel (kill me now).  So we ran over and ordered some.  They needed to be baked so we scarfed down a regular soft pretzel while we waited.  See, one trip for pretzels last week and I've fallen off the wagon.

When we got home I split the cheesesteak pretzel with grandma.  Oh it was GOOOOOD.  And I had some bean-less chili.  It's her birthday know there was cake.  It was a small slice, but still. I can't believe I'm saying this, but I am totally craving vegetables.  I need some green beans.  Maybe some carrots or broccoli.  Who am I?

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support. 

Help...I'm being chased by Kermit

Greetings from the Delaware Beaches,

So this morning I woke up and got ready to go to the fitness center.  I was all excited.  Now if you'll remember from before, the treadmill at the fitness center faces the pool.  I walked in to the fitness center this morning and it was just too sad.  The pool is empty and there was a lone floatie floating around it in.  I just couldn't do it.  It was too depressing.

Instead I decided to walk around the neighborhood.  It was a rare moment when there was no rain (HOORAY!) and it was actually pretty warm.  Besides, I don't usually walk around the neighborhood so this would be nice.  The only thing that was giving me pause was my irrational fear of frogs.

Okay, let's go back.  I am a suburbia girl.  I don't have frogs.  Three weeks ago when I was down here I left a neighbor's house and walked about three blocks in the dark to go get my car to take the kids to Mini-golf.  It was pretty dark and just about a block before I got to my car I saw Big Bubba (the biggest bullfrog EVER) sitting under a street light in someone's driveway. He was staring me down. My heart started to race a little.  Just as I passed him I started to calm down and then....I heard it.  RIBBIT!  I turned and looked in his direction and he was just sitting there. But, then my eye caught something leaping out of the storm drain and heading towards me.  I TOOK OFF.  I was running to my car screaming (it's a nice quiet neighborhood and I'm sure there were a bunch of people looking out their windows laughing at me).  I could see my car and I felt good until I realized that I still had to get my keys out.  I fumbled for what felt like five minutes (but I'm sure was only five seconds) and got my keys.

My heart was still racing when I picked the kids up.  I had to tell someone so I told them. My nephew's reaction: Aunt Jennie, what did you think would happen when it caught up to you?  My answer: I DON'T KNOW. But, he was chasing me for something and I was not about to stick around for it.

So fast forward to my arrival last night in the dark.  I was bringing one load in the house when I noticed a bunch of "lumps" on the driveway. There was no direct light on them and they could have been pine cones. Wait, that pine cone just moved!  It's okay, I can get the rest of my stuff in the morning.

Now you know. You can keep laughing.  It's okay.  I'm weird.  So there I am this morning walking through the neighborhood having a panic attack every time I came upon a storm drain. It did occur to me that my family thinks I'm at the fitness center and if I do encounter Kermit and have a heart attack no one will know where to look for me :-O

Once I decided to walk the neighborhood I figured this would be good practice for the half-marathon.  I am a lap girl.  I am a numbers girl.  It's all part of my OCD.  If you see me on the track, in the park, or at the mall you will see one of my fingers twitching. That is me counting which lap I'm on.  It's what I do.  Marathons are not laps. I will need to get used to not counting.  This is stressful for me.  I need my numbers!  But, this morning I was branching out.  I hopped on the sidewalk (because I have only ever seen the frogs on the street so this is my safe zone...I know, it makes no sense, but don't fight it...It's how I can move on.).  After about 15 minutes I realized I actually was on a loop. HOORAY!  I did two loops and decided I to face my fears and branch out on to the unknown frog infested side streets.  Less than twenty feet into the first side street there was a squished frog.  Ick.

In total I saw three squished frogs and no live ones.  It was a personal victory.  Not only had I walked the unknown streets, but I was willing to take on Kermit. Bring it!

Oh and ps-I am fully prepared for the onslaught of frog pictures, figurines, emails, phone calls, texts, etc that I am about to receive. 

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile

Friday, September 23, 2011

Facing the Scale

If you would have told me ten years ago that I would be asking for a scale for my birthday, I would have laughed in your face.  My how times have changed.

I keep referring to stepping on the scale for the first time and how I did not even look.  My brain was in such denial and had no concept of how much I weighed. In my head I was seriously only 30lbs overweight, not 90.  The fact that I wouldn't look is proof that I really did know how bad it was, I just wasn't ready to face it.

Once I got used to weighing in I broke down and bought a scale of my own.  Of course I got a cheapy one.  Naturally it did not match the scale at work so I would dial the calibration back to match.  Don't get the cheap one.  Just don't.

After four years with it, I did my research and I found a Biggest Loser scale that is pretty sweet.  You can set the memory and it will remember your stats.  When you step on it it factors in your age, height, and activity level.    It will then show you your weight, your bmi, and the amount of calories you need to consume to maintain that weight.  The suggestion is to lessen that by 300 calories a day and you should lose a pound in 10 days.  I'm not suggesting that you have to get this scale, but you should invest in a good scale.

When you weigh make sure to keep it consistent.  Do it the same time every week.  I like to do it first thing in the morning.  And yes, I do it in my underwear because Lord only knows how much my clothes weigh and I don't want them messing up the numbers.  :-)  I also don't want what I eat  to be sitting in my belly for that.  That's just me.

Keep the scale on a flat surface. Don't use it on carpet.  And don't keep it stored standing up.

You're not supposed to weigh yourself every day.  I am so bad about this.  I do it every day.  But, I do it to keep myself in check.  Yes, my weight fluctuates a few pounds throughout the week.  Water weight sucks.  But, I know my threshold.  When it starts to stay on the higher side and not go back down, that's when I need to focus harder.

I used to look at the scale as my enemy, but now I see it as my motivator.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Season's 52 - Part 1

Today was WAY better than yesterday :-)

My company offers a wellness program and one of my favorite events is the cooking demonstration at Season's 52.  Season's 52 is an awesome restaurant that has a seasonal menu and all entrees are 475 calories or less.  They use local products and no butter. That's right you heard me. NO butter.  The Horror you say!  I would have said the same, but their food is outstanding.  If anyone wants to go for dinner call me. I am totally in.

Last year work husband and I had the small table up front and got to share the same size samples as the tables of 8. It was awesome.  So you can imagine how excited I was for this today.  In preparation I ate my lunch early since the demonstration started at 3.  I did make it a light lunch though so that I could partake in the deliciousness.  Sadly I was not able to procure a small table and had to share with everyone else, but that's ok.  It was still worth it.

Please note that I took lots of notes and will provide them in a future post, Part 2, but I need some time to research to make sure I spell things properly for you.  I also need to decipher my chicken scratch.  Hopefully I will have this for you this weekend.  You're going to love it!

The first item of business was a Duck salad.  Yes, I cringed.  Seriously?  Ick. The salad part was full of butternut squash, cranberries, toasted pecans, and root vegetable that looked like a potato and tasted like a pear (I don't have my notes next to me and I can't remember what it's called).  The dressing was a sesame dressing. YUM.  The duck was marinated and served medium well.

Who the heck knew that I LOVE duck.  I'm horrified by this discovery because they are so cute and pretty, but sakes alive it was tasty.  Since a table of eight is splitting the dish it's kind of hard to take a lot of the food.  I just sat there staring at the leftovers on the plate wondering where the line was between being polite and GIMME!

The second dish was a cucumber salad with chili flakes.  Delicious.

The main entree was scallops and pearl pasta (cous cous) over asparagus.  Since I'm allergic to seafood they were kind enough to bring me a side of Pearl Pasta.  Holy crap that was good. Someone was good enough to ask where to find it in the grocery store.  Should be with the pasta, but if not check the international section.  I did brave it and grab a piece of asparagus that looked like it hadn't touched the scallops.  And that was tasty too.

And then it was time for the really good stuff...the stuff we were all waiting for...Dessert!  They serve little dessert shooters.  Last year I had the key lime shooter.  Today I had the pecan pie with mousse shooter.  If I could have stuck my tongue all of the way in the glass I would have.  I was in heaven.

A big shout out to Carol for organizing this!  If you need someone to go next week I'm so volunteering :-)

It was nice when we left so I decided to go to the park to walk instead of the mall.  I put on my skinny jeans this morning because I want to know when I'm full, but I hadn't figured on the walk.  Not the ideal pants for it, but oh well I am committed.

I was literally on the track for 30 seconds and then I wanted to cry.  I should have gone to the mall.  I can walk on the hottest day. I can walk on the coldest day.  I can walk in the rain.  What makes me not want to walk are gnats.  They were everywhere.  I put my water bottle in my bag and pursed my lips. Okay, so maybe I won't do the 3 miles I had planned.  Maybe just two and then I can lift weights.  Ugh it was gross.  Now I should have prefaced this with: before I got out of the car I put on lip lips were gnat magnets.

I am Sooo not a bug person.  I pretty much freak out when they are around.  Do not even get me started on stink bugs.  Anyway, I pushed myself to stay out for four miles in an hour. Which is saying something considering I did not have a sip of water the whole time for fear of what would happen when I opened my mouth.

I was pretty proud of myself.  I pushed myself when I really really really wanted to shower.  If I could walk through the gnats I could do just about anything.  If Mr. Hardbody showed up I might have even asked for his number.  (Yeah right, I had a mouth full of bugs...that wasn't going to happen).

So now I will amend a previous statement.  It is okay not to go straight to the kitchen when you come home if your body is a gnat graveyard.  A shower is an acceptable diversion. As long as you don't sit after that.  Immediately after the shower I made a matching salad for dinner and for lunch tomorrow.  Go me!

What is our lesson tonight?  Working out is not always pretty, but it's always worth it.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile   

The Dreaded Class Reunion

So irony of all Class Reunion is this weekend.  I had no desire to go to any of the previous Reunions because I was embarrassed with how I looked and just didn't want people to see me.  This year I am all about it, but I cannot go.  It's grandma's birthday and I must spend the weekend with the beach :-)

Funny how I thought I was fat in high school and today I would kill to be that weight again.  SOMEDAY!

As I've said before, my weight has been a roller coaster ride.  Naturally I was at my heaviest for each of the Reunions.  You could not drag me there if you tried.  I was not happy with myself and I knew I would not be hearing anything positive like "You look great!" or "You have never looked better!".  Oh no, it would have been "What the hell happened to you?"

I may not be at my high school weight, but I have never looked better.  I have muscles where there were no muscles before.  I am taking care of my body.  I would happily go and welcome all of the positive comments.  I would expect many you know :-)

So fellow Raiders, I will be thinking of you fondly from the sand and the ocean. I hope you have a wonderful time.  And yes, you look fantastic!  If you are only in town for the weekend I am sorry I missed you.  Hit me up the next time you come back.  If you're currently in the area, give me a shout out if you want to go walking :-)

See you at the next one!  And I will look even better :-)

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Going to my happy place now

Seriously, Calgon take me away!

Just when I got some personal things squared away, work whacked me in the face today.  I need to gain all of the weight back just so that I can split in half and do twice as much work.  Just kidding. It's not worth it.

This morning wasn't so bad. Although I walked in to a massive project on top of my usual work (that I am swamped under anyway).  I got a handle on the project and was feeling pretty good.  The deadline is supposed to be Friday so I had plenty of time.  I sent out my requests and would check back in the afternoon for responses.

Up next was training Ms. Dr Pepper (just kidding...she's really paranoid that I'm going to call her out now and drinks juice and water all day...although I did see the pepsi today).  Training her meant that some of my work will go away.  YEAH.  So it was a good morning.

I couldn't walk at lunch because I had a call in with my weekly Bible study.  I love that 30 minutes every week, but I really needed to get out of the office and blow off some steam.  Alas, it was not meant to be.  That's okay though. This was a much needed study week.

And then the S*&T hit the fan. I had just gotten back to my desk after heating up my lunch and the phone started ringing off the hook with Rush requests.  My email also lit up with Rushes.  We had a team meeting and I volunteered to stay behind and answer the phones because of my work load.  And then came the request to finish the project today.  Seriously, it took me 2 hours to eat my lunch.  I stopped drinking my water and ended up with tunnel vision for the rest of the day.  5 o'clock could NOT come soon enough.

Since I couldn't walk at lunch my plan was to walk in the park after work.  It's raining.  BAH.  Okay, I can work with this.  I went to the mall instead.  It was a little weird to walk at night, but I took the challenge. In fact, instead of my three mile mall walk I made it five!  LOVED it.  I needed that sooooo bad.  I felt so much better afterwards.  I didn't even mind the traffic on the way the way, why the heck was there traffic so close to 7pm?  Don't know.  Don't care.  I put on my Tina Fey Audio Book and laughed my whole way home.

As soon as I got home I went straight to the kitchen and packed my lunch for tomorrow and made a nice big salad for dinner.  I've said it before and I'll say it again.  DO NOT SIT when you get home.  Go straight to the kitchen and take care of business.  You can rest after.  If you wait then you have a greater chance of letting that "I'll just run out at lunch tomorrow" thought creep in.  Bad. Bad. Bad.

Here is my tip for the day: PLEASE put "Oh Yeah" by Yello on your ipod.  Do you remember the ending of Ferris Bueller when the Principal is riding on the bus?  That's the song.  Let me just say that I was giggling the whole time it played tonight.  Having that deep voice repeat "Oh Yeah...even more beautiful" the while I was walking just made me walk faster (and of course check out my butt in every reflection possible :-) 

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile  

The Biggest Loser Week 1 - don't worry no spoiler in case you DVR'd and haven't watched yet :-)

FINALLY!  I have missed my favorite Tuesday night show.  The Biggest Loser is back!

I hope you got a chance to watch the first episode of the new season.  If you did, were you amazed at the amount of weight lost?  It's crazy.  When you treat your body like crap for so long that's what happens.  One week of "detoxing" the bad food and habits and you can drop a ton of weight.  Now don't get discouraged if you personally are not dropping 16lbs during your first week. Unless you are going from couch potato to working out 6-7 hours a day and completely changing your eating habits you aren't going to be that successful.  But, it is pretty cool to know that it's possible.

This season is different.  Jillian Michaels is gone (sad face).  In addition to my boyfriend, Bob, there are two new trainers: Dolvett Quince (who is quite delightful to look at) and Anna Kournakova (yes, the tennis player).  I wasn't sure about how I felt when she was announced as the trainer at the end of last season.  But, these contestants aren't just losing weight.  They are becoming athletes.  They have to.  They are spending so much time training their bodies that is the only way to look at it.

Put down the orange soda and the donuts.  Put down the milk shake and fried chicken.  Put down the coke and the pizza.  Get off of the couch!

Pick up the water.  Pick up the vegetables.  Pick up the protein.  Pick up the whole grains.  Move!

Today is the first day of the new you.  Look at the ages of everyone on this show. They range from the 20's to the 60's.  Some of the biggest losers in the past have been Senior citizens. This season is called the Battle of the Ages.  The teams are divided by age.  And let me tell you something, you cannot count out any age.  It is never too late.

Usually I cry at the beginning when the contestants are telling their stories.  This time I cried at the end when they showed previews of the upcoming season.  I was just so excited for this journey they are about to take. Their lives are about to change drastically and it's going to be so wonderful.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The horrible no good very bad day

Wow...I had just posted what a good day it was on Sunday when my life took an unexpected turn.  I'm not going to go into all of the details (even though I was not at fault it is still humiliating to talk about), but I will share some because I want to share how I dealt with the stress.

At 1am I was woken up because my car was being towed.  I went running out to find out why and was told it was being repossessed.  This made no sense.  I have made every payment.  I was given a number to call first thing in the morning.  Oh yeah, like I could sleep after that.  My heart was racing. I did not sleep for one minute and spent the whole night praying.  Once daybreak came I was up and ready to fight and find out what was going on.  Long story short, my lender said I did not have insurance.  That was completely false and I was able to provide them proof immediately and they accepted it.  Great I can have it back now.  Not so fast.  It still had to be processed and a credit would need to be issued.  This could take 7-10 days.  WHAT?  I need my car.  This wasn't my fault, but somehow I was paying the price.

I had talked to enough people to know I would have my car back in a short time.  But, that doesn't stop the worrying.  I never saw this coming so who's to say something else doesn't come up.  By the time I had logged off the computer for work (thank goodness I had the option to work from home) I knew I was going to pass out.  My brain and body were completely exhausted.  I could barely function at that point.  I laid down and was asleep withing seconds. 

Fast forward a day and I have my car back thanks to a bunch of heroes.  Big shout out to my dad and to my work husband.  There is still some work that needs to be done, but the threat of losing my car is gone.  Now here's what happened behind the scenes:

I barely ate.  I had purchased and prepared such great food on Sunday and it just sat there.  My stomach could not take it. I had a cereal bar and couldn't keep it down.  It took me 2 hours to force a turkey sandwich down for lunch and that didn't stay down.  My awesome roomie brought me a frosty and that was magic. It stayed down.  I barely drank water.  I had no sleep.  I could barely function.  My brain was swirling.

This kind of stress was going to go one of two ways: one- I would eat everything in sight or two- I would eat nothing.  Neither is good.  Sure I didn't overeat, but I also didn't nourish my body properly. I also didn't move all day.  I was in bed making calls and working on my laptop.  I burned no calories.

Today was a little better.  I got the call early on that things were moving in the right direction and I could go get my car back (THANK YOU).  But, until I had in my hands I still could not eat.  I had a cereal bar and that was it.  I took a protein bar with me and as soon as I saw my car I felt a thousand times better.  I ate my bar.

When I got home I amazingly had an appetite again.  Luckily I still had some of my turkey chili in the fridge.  I had some of that to hold me over until dinner.  I had been marinating chicken for two days in balsamic vinaigrette and I needed to grill that. At this point I would like to give another shout out to the big know who I'm talking about:  Mr. George Foreman.  Without his grille I don't know what I would do.  I love mine so much.  I actually think I need to get a new one because mine is so used it's getting disgusting.  So tonight I grilled my chicken and made a salad.  I also made sure I sucked down a bunch of water.

Stress is a bad bad thing.  It makes you eat when you aren't hungry.  It makes you eat things that you shouldn't.  It messes up your body.  In my case I didn't handle the stress properly, but I am making sure that I react to the aftermath the right way.  The Biggest Loser is on tonight and my weights are calling my name.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile 

Fat jokes are NOT funny

Since I've started the blog, I have become very aware of just how many fat jokes I am hearing.  And let me just say that it is disturbing.

One night at Happy Hour the bartender was a very large gentleman.  I lost track of the number of times he insulted his own weight for a laugh.  Everyone was laughing, but I just silently wept.  It's bad enough when others do it, but it was even sadder to me when someone does it to themselves.  His favorite line was: You want to know if you are drunk?  Look at me, do I look skinny with hair?  Throughout the night he kept putting himself down through jokes and it just made me so sad.

I was watching the Fashion Police special on E! about the Emmy awards.  There was one actress (I'm sorry, but do not remember her name) who was just lovely.  She is a large African American woman who wore this gorgeous yellow gown.  It was an Empire waist chiffon gown with a matching wrap and a beaded bodice.  She looked stunning.  I was happy that everyone gave her props and nominated her for best dressed.  And then came the comment from Joan Rivers "She pushed everyone out of the way to get to the buffett."  Seriously?  Was that necessary?  She did everything right with her gown and she still got laughed at because of her weight.

Today on Friends it was the episode where Monica and Chandler got married.  Do you remember Ross was dancing with the little girls to impress Mona?  Well the last girl to dance with him was a little chubby and wanted to stand on his feet like the other girls.  Of course he made a comment under his breath.  What mom lets their kid audition for the "fat girl" role?  What kind of self esteem is that kid going to have now? 

One of my favorite shows is Mike and Molly.  I love this show.  They are so funny.  Oh and they are so Fat.  When I first heard about it I was ecstatic.  FINALLY!  There is a show on that doesn't load the cast with actors and actresses with impossible bodies.  The main characters met at an Overeaters Anonymous meeting.  I thought this was going to be so great.  I do love it, but the number of fat jokes in it is starting to get to me too.  All I can think about is what it's doing to their heads too.  Why can't it just be a normal show about overweight people?  Why all of the fat jokes?  I could live without the Chunky Monkey and Big Fella references.

On a side note: KUDOS to Melissa McCarthy (LOVED her as Suki on Gilmore Girls) for her Emmy win for portraying Molly.  The tides are turning people.  And that's a good thing.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Tips Part 2 - Clothing

Along with the right sneaker, you want to make sure that you have the appropriate clothing for working out.

Make sure your clothes aren't too tight or too loose.  You don't want to be pulling up your pants as you are moving around.  You also don't want to be sticking your hand in the waistband trying to stretch it out.  Tops are just as important.  If your shirt is twisting around on you it may distract you while you are tugging it back.

I do have a problem with shorts riding up. They fit the waist just fine, but when I find myself constantly pulling down the leg of them then they get pulled from the rotation.  I want to focus on my breathing and my pace, not my clothes.

Also, if you have sensitive skin you may want to avoid the nylon track pants.  I have a tendency to get numb legs from the rubbing against it.  First time I thought it was a fluke.  After the second time I took them out of the rotation.  It is a beyond weird feeling.

And ladies, for goodness sake, get a good bra.  Today I saw a very well endowed woman in spandex who was using the lining as her bra.  NO. NO. NO!  No one wants to see that and it is SO not providing the support you need. If you are running around and jiggling side to side or up and down you most certainly do not have the support you need.  Duct tape them down if you have to.  It's only going to put a strain on your back and possibly poke an eye out.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

It was a good day

Oh happy day.

I started this beautiful day at Church.  I got to run after a few of the little ones after Service and managed to keep up with them.  haha. After church I had plans to meet up with a friend at my old high school track.  The sun was shining and it could not have been nicer.  Thank you God.

I turned up the ipod and off I went.  The track is a really nice rubber track and way better than it was when I was in school. I am jealous.  Not that I was exactly running around it back then.  But, I might have (although I think we all know I wouldn't).

Anyway, I was enjoying the day so much I actually lost track of the number of laps I was doing.  Luckily I was timing my laps and had my pedometer to figure it out.  I was walking with Daddy-Long-Legs, but you can call her Kristin, so either she was slowing down for me or I was keeping up a good pace.  She would break off and jog a lap or two and I would keep on for my lap pace.  We discussed walking a half-marathon and I got way too excited.  I SO have this!  I know it.

At one point this "professional" showed up.  He stretched for about twenty minutes and then put on his flat running shoes.  We moved over into the next lane figuring he would smoke us on the track.  Uh no.  He sorely disappointed us.  I was expecting greatness.  He ran about 3 sprints and then jogged a lap or two. Then he stretched for another twenty minutes and left.  We still aren't sure what the deal was, but I'd like to point out that I did way more than he did!  haha.

After five miles it was time to go.  I had to run to the store and get back before the raced started.  But, rained in Chicago so the race was delayed.  This meant I could do some serious grocery shopping at the Super Target.

First order of business, return the workout top that I bought last night that is TOO BIG!  Heck yeah!  I still do that.  I know I fit in a Medium now (which is a long cry from the XXL I used to be), but I still think they look to small and always end up going for the Large.

I picked out a new Medium shirt (and another pack of socks...I'm so addicted to them now) and went over to the appliances.  I don't want to get you too jealous, but I have had my eye on a little tiny Crockpot for a couple of weeks.  It's a two-person crockpot and just over $10.  Since it's football day and the air is a little crisp I really wanted to make chili.  I grabbed my new little appliance with the giddiness of a kid in a candystore (I hate that phrase by the way) and made my way to the food section.  Yes, I got ground turkey for the chili.  I got my veggies and my usual snacks for lunch this week.

When I got home I got out the chicken to marinate for my salads later in the week and fired up the crockpot.  The race was still delayed, the Eagles and Phillies didn't play until later, and the Ravens weren't on tv.  I got a lot of the stuff on my list done while my healthy dinner was cooking :-)  I'm still not ready to break out the winter clothes just yet.  Let me get through one more beach weekend please.

A little while ago I did some searching and found a half-marathon at the beach in December.  The max time is 7 hours.  I'm convinced I can do it in 3.5.  I just need to convince someone to help me pay for it (it's a little pricier than I would if you want to sponsor me I'd be happy to give you a shout out...haha.  If I had signed up in March it would have been a lot less, but after 9/30 it's $100...a little steep for me for my first one).

Now I have two games to watch tonight and just kick back and relax.  I've earned it!

PS-I'm also a little excited because I finally reached Australia!  I have had hits in 16 countries now and Australia was my big Want.  Haha...I have no idea how I am reaching so far, but I am so excited about it.  Thank you everyone.

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile 

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hopes and Dreams

I have a dream!  And up until now, only one person knew what it was (besides me).  Tonight I will share it with you.  But, first let me tell you about my day.

I woke up this morning and was eager to get to the park. I had not worked out the last two days and was itching to get back out there.  I did double up three days ago, so I shouldn't feel too bad, but I don't like to let it go more than a day without getting out there.

My plan was to walk five miles.  I had cookout to get to later and I still had that list of things to do to tackle.  So I put on the new playlist and off I went. I was feeling pretty good.  The park was packed and that was a good feeling.  I love seeing people out there making the best of a good day.  I enjoyed watching the dad bring his little girl and her scooter.  He could not keep up with her so he had to cut across the field.  There ya go for some incentive.  Give your kid the advantage of wheels and try to keep up with them.  haha.

About three laps in I was coming up upon a fairly big girl.  Normally I love passing people, but I hesitated on this one.  I didn't want her to feel discouraged that people keep passing.  I know what that's like.  It makes you want to give up.  Eventually I gave in and said hi as I passed.  She kept up with me for a few laps after that.  Sometimes you really need that "rabbit" in front of you to push you a little harder.

As I was approaching my fifth mile I thought to myself "Why not go for six?".  I had to make up for yesterday after all.  So I did.  Except that my knee started screaming the second I started that sixth mile.  I slowed it down just a little and it felt better.  So why not try for a seventh?  Ok.  And off I went.  I'm already running late for the cookout, so what's another mile?  Eight it is. Besides, I have my OCD to deal with and I'm a little numbers crazy.  Why stop at an hour and forty-five minutes when you can do the whole two hours?  Yeah, I'm freaky like that.

First, let me say that my feet felt good.  I said it before, but those new socks are awesome.  So awesome and went back and bought more tonight (Target- 3 pairs for $7 All Pro Maxspun).  Second, I have a tendency to walk the park (I don't when I'm on the treadmill) with my arms down by my side. Don't do that.  My hands swell pretty bad.  I end up with "man" hands.  It actually got so bad today that I could not make a fist.  So pump your arms as you go.  It's good for so many reasons: helps get the heart rate up, moves your momentum, and stops the swelling.

Now it's time to share my dream.  I want to compete in a half-marathon.  I have for a long time.  5Ks don't really appeal to me.  I do that every day and I'm not in it for the short bursts.  To me this is pretty metaphorical too.  I want to go the distance.  That's what gets me through it when I get passed on the track. They may pass me for a little while, but I know I'm out there much longer. 

I have done 10 miles in 2.5 hours before.  So I'm convinced I can do a half marathon in under 3.5 miles.  I would want to train for it though and maybe get my time down to 3 hours.  Can you walk in a marathon though?  That's what's really kept me from trying for one.  If anyone knows of a good half Marathon anywhere between NY and NC in the spring please let me know.  I will sign up for it. That is my pledge to you.  I will, however, ask that I have some supporters at the finish line :-)  If I have that as a goal, it will force me to get out there and walk all winter. 

As I write this my knee is throbbing (but that's also thanks to a little Wii Just Dance action tonight...not my smartest idea).  So I need a few months to condition my body and my knee to handle the almost 14 miles.  It amazes me that I can even think that I could do this.  I could barely walk 2 miles when I started this journey and today I finished 8 without batting an eye.  I only stopped because I had somewhere to go.  That is freakin' AWESOME.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile

Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Night Blues

This week was a bit hectic. Thank goodness it's Friday.  5 o'clock came and I was ready to bolt from work (even though I'll probably doing more overtime this weekend...can you say FUN?).  I did bolt.  Right into traffic. It sucked.  All of the major roadways home were parking lots.  And you know I was sucking down water all you can guess where this is going.  It would have been bad enough if it was a regular commute home. This was just plain torture.

My plans got postponed so I had to figure out what to do for dinner.  I could stop and pick up something. But what?  What could I get?  Maybe something at Panera? Oh there's a Five Guys, I could get a burger.  I want fries.  Oooh or maybe a quick quesidilla.  Maybe a salad at Wendy's.  That would be stupid though.  I can make a salad at home.  And that's what I did.  I would like to say it's because it was the right decision.  But, the truth is that between it being the end of the week (my brain was mush) and having to go to the bathroom so bad, I just could not decide what to do.  It worked out for the best though.

I have a lot to do this weekend.  And so naturally, here I sit playing on my computer.  Oops.

So why am I blue on a Friday?  Because it is COLD.  Sure I don't love the humidity, but I am not ready to say good-bye to summer just yet. Here's a little secret: the former fat girl used to hate the summer.  Shorts, t-shirts, and bathing suits were nightmares.  She could not wait until it was time to get out the sweaters and sweatshirts.  Anything big and baggy was her friend. Now, I love tank tops and shorts.  I have a figure now.  A fun figure.  I don't need to hide it anymore. 

I don't want to get the bulky clothes out :-( Sure the sweaters I have now are smaller than they used to be, but they are still not the same thing as the tight-fitting t-shirt I am wearing right now (with a jacket). I am pretty much coming up with a list of things to do before I have to get out the sweaters.   That list is getting pretty long at this point. Does anyone need any housework done?

I am going back to the beach next weekend and am hoping that my wishful thinking will keep it warm for just a little bit longer...Just one more week.  That's all I ask.

****Please note****

If you feel like you are alone on your journey and you just need some encouragement I am here for you!  Shoot me an email and I will do my best to check in on you or give you the words of support you need several times a week.  The journey is so much easier if you have support.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

It's Pretzel Day!

It's Pretzel Day!  It's Pretzel Day!  It's Pretzel Day!  FINALLY!

As you can imagine, I am a little happy today. My long awaited destiny with the Soft Pretzel with the Jalapeno Spinach Cheese dip has finally arrived.  It was pure heaven.

Before the pretzel I had to figure out what to eat for lunch.  We couldn't decide where to go and finally came up with the food court at the mall.  This is quite possibly the most challenging choice.  Mexican.  Chinese.  Hot grill.  Pizza. Deli. And the token salad joint.  No matter what I plan on I always get sucked into the Chicken Cheesesteak and fries.  It's such a good deal. It's always the "Special" so that means it's a bargain right?

Today I was very proud of myself though. I was walking past the Chinese counter and spotted the most beautiful steamed Vegetables. I stopped dead in my tracks. And sitting prettily behind it was my favorite Bourbon chicken.  So I asked for a plate with both.  No rice.  As with any Chinese mall food court, they piled it on.  I actually had to tell them to take some off.  Don't be afraid to do that.  Remember: If it's not on the plate then you can't eat it :-)

When I got back to work I was comfortable and not full. My jeans were even still loose.  GO ME.  I was feeling pretty good about myself when I realized that I had not really had any water since I got to work.  Dang it.  I drank a bunch before and on my way in, but not really anything since.  Bah.  So I quick knocked back 20 ounces.  And before I knew it, it was time for Happy Hour.  Happy PRETZEL Hour.

On my way into the bar I found some cash laying on the ground (important for later).  It was a good chunk and there was no one around. So I walked in pretty dang happy.  I could buy Pretzels all night long!  It was the first thing I ordered.  I had strong armed my work-husband into sharing it with me.  And I'm so glad I did.  I could barely finish one, let alone two (although I'm fairly certain it's meant to share).  It was delicious and worth the wait, but there was a whole lotta salt going on.  I tried wiping some off, but it was practically glued to it.  Didn't care.  I wanted it. On my last bite I thought I might die.  I had a pocket of salt in my mouth and felt like I was going to be in a permanent pucker for the rest of the night.

By now I was ready for a drink.  I wanted the berry sangria, but naturally they were out and I was forced to get a strawberry margarita.  Honestly, I had no choice ;-)  And what comes on a Margarita?  Salt.  I have had my weekly intake in about an hour.  I should have asked if they had a skinny Margarita, but I was in such a Pretzel after-glow that I couldn't think.

It is important to mention that another round of pretzels made their way to the table, but I was satisfied and did not have any.  I'm still full and so I did not have anything else.  It's not the best dinner, but I don't want to force anything on me either.  I'm already going to wake up a big bloated salty mess.  I did ask for a glass of water before I left and have been drinking another glass since I got home. My tongue is definitely feeling less shriveled.

So you know that money was burning a hole in my pocket.  And well my beloved Phillies had just clinched a playoff birth yesterday.  I need a new shirt!  We walked into the sports store and picked out a few shirts. I no longer have to go to the men's section for my shirts. I can go to the women's!  But, their sizes still suck and I always have to try them on.  Remember the salt?  It was not a pretty picture.  My little happy glow was now a big frown :-(  Why did I do that to myself?  I still bought one thought.  It's pretty cute and I will try it on again tomorrow when I've de-saltified.

Check out my Facebook Page for  Confessions:

yeah, sorry, I messed up and the "l" is missing....I need an assistant :-)

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @hugsnsmile