Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Never Ending a good and bad week is never ending!

I hate when everyone is preparing for a long weekend and I'm all caught. I know that sounds bad, but when I have nothing to do I get bored.  And when I get bored, I get hungry.  No, I think about filling that time with food.   I don't know if it's a learned behavior or not. But, I don't like it.  All I have wanted to do all day is eat.  And I am not actually hungry.

And this is not the week for that.

I already confessed to the Magnum ice cream bars...yeah, they are gone.  But not forgotten!  They left some parting gifts...argh...freakin pimples.  It's my punishment.  I know it. I have a bunch of big giant pimples on my face that of course in my study stress I picked at.  So not attractive.  You would think I would know better by now. ARGH!

Well monday was my good day.  Tuesday I had lunch plans with Ms. Barb and Fitness Competition Arch Nemesis Ryan.  We were all over the place trying to decide where to go and then I had a brilliant idea.  Let's go to the mall food court cause I wanted some Bourbon Chicken!  I would get it with two sides of veggies instead of one veggie and one rice. So good, but so heavy in my belly.

When I made this plan I forgot why I stopped going there...I like to people watch normally, but not while I am eating...and the food court at the mall is not a good place.  Too much spandex I tell you! Spandex should be reserved for working out not for your mall outfit. But I get it, it's comfortable. Not everything that looks good is comfy and not everything that is comfy looks good.  It was horrible to watch some of these girls piling their plates with food.  I believe this might have been the quietest I have ever been at lunch.  It was hard to take in.

Usually I try to limit my eating out to once a week, but yesterday Ms. Tracey asked if I wanted to go out today.  Sure. So that gave me two study lunches and two lunches out this week. Tomorrow is a half day for me so I'm not counting that. Originally we decided on Baja Fresh.  My immediate thought was YUM! And then the dread came. Could I resist the chips and salsa?  What would I have that would fuel me up for the gym?  Well I didn't have to worry, Baja got pushed back til next week.  But, we were still going out to lunch.

We were in the car driving before we came up with a place...a dangerous plan when you are hungry. Peace A Pizza won.  I would get a slice and a half salad.  The salad was good: Pear and gorgonzola. The slice was yummie! Fresh mozzarella, tomato, and basil. I saw the pesto one after I placed my order. DOH.

The drinks there have changed. The soda fountain doesn't carry coke or pepsi any more.  They have New Hope Premium Fountain. It's an interesting concept, but I am not sure if I buy it. No phosphoric acid or fructose corn syrup. That's good. But they stress how they are bottle free and help the environment.  Except that the cups they provide are plastic and a Recycle number 5, which not everyone can do. So the drink itself may actually be healthier, but still trying to figure if it's just a marketing ploy.  In any case, the "skinny root beer" was good.

One of the best parts about eating at Peace A Pizza is their cookies...oh their cookies.  I wanted one soooo bad, but I have had my share of ice cream bars this week.  Plus, today is cake day for Ms. Barb. She cut it and brought me over a piece of coconut.  It's the only way it could go down.  The cake cutting was at 2...and it took 15 minutes.  I sat at my desk silently freaking out "What is going on? Why haven't they cut the cake yet? I am pretty sure one is coconut...omg COCONUT!" Basically, no work will get done until this cake is cut at this point.  When I say that I can't focus, it ain't no lie!  If I had gone over for the cutting, I'm fairly certain people might have gotten hurt.  I had a small sliver of cake and everyone made it out alive.   Good deal.

My original plan was to stop for a turkey on whole wheat hoagie after the gym tonight since I have to pack. But, I've eaten out twice this week and I am heading out of town tomorrow so I think that is off of the table.

So let's talk workouts.  It's been a good and exhausting week. Monday I hit no traffic.  So my 60 minute run turned into a 90 minute run. I was a puddle when it was over, but oh did it feel good. It was a pretty good pace for me too. Then I had to think ahead. I wanted to do weights, but I needed to figure out my next run day too.

I opted for leg weights on Tuesday. Now on Monday while I was studying I was studying about assessments.  Most people do not do the max weight that they can.  I was doing the calculations for my legs and I was at fair. That blew me away. WHAT? How? I should be so much higher. So I upped my weights on every machine and added some wall squats.  I felt like a beast!  I was soooooo proud of myself. And you wanna know something? I could have gone higher!  Those weights put me in the Good category.  I want Excellent!  Then Superior.

Last night I did upper body. I went up on a few, but not all. My shoulder was still a little sore from Habitat for Humanity so I didn't want to injure it. I started on the Pulldown for my back. I like to do the Row first, but these two cheeseballs were sitting there hogging them. I did three sets before they even did one. When they finally got off I got on and found that the one guy was using the same weights as me. Come on dude! Pick it up!

My workout from Tuesday was so good that my butt has been uber sore today...go me! My upper body is a little sore too, but not bad. I pushed it this week and it felt Great!  My plan for tonight is cardio only.  That is, if I make it to the gym.  I still need to pack and I'm anticipating a lot of traffic (thursdays are worse than fridays in the summer and there is an Eagles game and a Phillies game).  I may never get home. If I am sitting forever then I will just go home and make sure I stretch.

****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, August 29, 2012

Such a Pretty Face

Happy Hump Day my Lovelies and Gents,

Can I just tell you how much I hate the phrase "She has such a pretty face."  Because you know the implication is "too bad the rest of her is repulsive". I heard this comment more times than I would like to count. 

This comment can be made completely innocently. The person saying it really may not know how hurtful it is.  I am sure that is the case often.  Then again, I'm just as sure that some people are saying it knowing the implications.

One of the first places you lose weight is in the face.  It's an easy fat.

Ironically, I never thought my face was matter how big I got. The crazy part of that statement is that I would freak out when I saw a picture and I would have a double chin while I was laughing or turning my head. I look back at pictures -now it it makes me so sad.

So when you lose the weight in your face, you start to hear "Your face is so thin!" and "Wow, I can really see the weight-loss in your face".  I know it's meant as a compliment.  But, all I'm hearing is "Because wow it was so fat before!"

I didn't really think that I had more to lose in my face this past year.  I was wrong. I look at pictures just from last summer and I can see a difference.  This week I realized a pretty happy milestone.  No matter how thin I thought that my face was, I was in for a rude awaking when I would lean over.  Gravity would grab hold and I would look like I had chipmunk cheeks.  Dang it!  Where did they come from???

Well no more!  And I'm not even sucking in!  WOO WOO!  If you have never had the fat cheeks then you really don't know how exciting this is.  For those of you who have, this one's for you!  It was a big big day when I discovered this.  And let me tell you, I test it out all of the time.  I am constantly leaning over just to make sure it is true.

Last month I had taken a picture of myself wearing my new Team Bob shirt that I got in NYC.  I had my hair pulled back as I was heading out to the gym.  I posted it on my Confessions Facebook page and my mom immediately made the comment "You look emaciated."  I wouldn't go that far, but seriously, I can't get over looking at this picture.  My face is so thin. SO thin!  And this wasn't a trick of the camera photo either.  No angling from above.  No laying down and letting gravity do it's thing.  This was a straight on photo.

Now, of course the fat covered up some of the aging process.  I know I still do not look my age (Thanks to some fabulous genes), but I can see the um...we'll call it 'wisdom' starting to show. It's okay.  It's was bound to happen sooner or later.  A young little high schooler was following me around in the gym last night so I think I still got it!

So the good news is that since I don't have more fat there it's bound to start melting off of the belly any minute now!  Come on...I'm waiting!!!

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition - Sally

Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition - Sally

I took a study break yesterday and watched the episode on demand that I had missed.  Ironically, it on again later in the night.  Wow, what a great episode!

So we meet Sally in Washington DC.  She is 45.  For most of her life she was athletic and fit.  She was a swimmer.  In her 20's she fell down the stairs and broke her leg.  It was bad.  She needed 5 surgeries and had to relearn how to walk.  Today she is married and has a 3yr old boy.  And she's 200lbs overweight.

One day while she was watching football they had put up the stats of the linemen and she realized that she was bigger than they were.

After the surgeries she lost her job.  Her pain makes it difficult to work so she got certified to be a tour guide.  While she was giving a tour by the Lincoln Memorial Chris surprised her.

He immediately takes her to Boot Camp.  You know the first thing he asks is : Where do you want to be?  She wants to surf again!  She used to live in a bathing suit, and now she only goes to pools where she doesn't know anyone.

So it's time for the weigh in. "I make jokes, but it's not funny."  She weighs in at 335lbs. Chris talks to her about how she's different than many of his clients because she was fit once.  She says it happened over years in small increments.  I feel her pain.

Trainer Tip: Give yourself a milestone.  A 5K, a marathon, a triathlon.  So you are not just working out, you are training too.

First stop is with the Nutritionist.  They are going to make Shrimp and Chicken fajitas.

Sally's plan will be 5 meals a day at 300 calories each. She will have 3 weights days and 6 cardio days.  The big change will be NO SODA.  She was consuming 5lbs of sugar a week in soda alone. In fact, they kept it in the produce drawer...instead of produce.

Next stop is a visit with the doctor to discuss her knee.  She had broken 30 bones and has an intense fear of injury.  Completely understandable. Chris made her promise that she will never use that as an excuse.

So during her first workouts she mentions that she is a 48DDD.  It's extremely discouraging.  Right there with ya sister!  Chris has her do the sled.  That's pushing weights across the room on a sled like contraption.  The way your body is bent over and you are pushing induces panic breathing and fear. Sally breaks down.  She is grieving her lost body and the damage she's done to herself.

It's time to go home.  Chris gives her the goal for Phase 1: 85lbs.  If she makes it she gets a makeover and a shopping spree.

Nutrition Tip:  Know the good nuts from the bad.  Good nuts: walnuts, almonds, and pistachios.  Bad nuts: Cashews and Macadamias.

Chris has Sally do squats against the wall.  She struggles mightily.  He tells her that it's time to "Get comfortable with being uncomfortable."  She succeeds and says "I love you hate you Chris."  Just love him.

This change in her life is causing struggles with her husband.  They go out to dinner and she orders healthy, while he still orders what they used to eat.  It was so heartbreaking to watch him eat chips and queso in front of her.  Support is soooo important.

It's time for the first weigh in.  She weighs in at 258lbs.  She misses her goal by 8lbs.

Chris: Those couple of slips kept her from it.

But, let's look at the positive. She lost 77lbs!

Chris gives her the 6 month goal before he leaves: 50lbs...and a surfing trip.

We see her in the gym and at a bowling party. Bah.  Pizza, cake, punch..."I'll stick to the bowling." GO GIRL!

So she breaks down and says that it's difficult because her husband does not share her desire to surf or go to the gym.  Going out to dinner was their way to connect with each other.  Things are getting to her and Chris is watching on the webcam.  At day 120 he shows up and tells her he's going to weigh her.  In the 30 days he's been gone she has gained 5lbs.  He raids her kitchen and finds all kind of junk food.  She says it's all her husbands.  And then she confesses that it's hard on her.  She can't find anyone to relate to.   She doesn't have 'fat' friends.   So Chris sets her up with a therapist. Afterward she felt overwhelming relief.

So Chris calls her family together to talk about the importance of a support system. Her husband tells her he is there for her.  He knows she wants to prove she can do it herself, but she can rely on him.

It's the 6 month weigh Hawaii...ahhhh  She weighs in at 238.  She doesn't make her goal.  Chris says that her biggest problem is her excuses.  He asks her if she still wants to try the surfing.  I would have been easier at 208, but it's up to her.  She says yes!  So he hooks her up with Laird Hamilton who brings along his wife Gabrielle Reece.  She does really well "it wasn't about standing on the board. It was about beating the fear and self doubt."

The goal for phase 3: To get under 200lbs.

Perfection will give her the results she wants, but Chris is worried. So he invites her to come stay with him and his wife Heidi, who is also a trainer, for 2 weeks.  She says yes.

One of the first things they do is set her up with a heart rate monitor.  She had one, but her son lost half of it. Heidi says that her problem is that she doesn't know her limits.  She thinks she is pushing herself harder than she actually is.

At one point Sally gets frustrated and storms into the bathroom.  She is "tired and sick of this". But, they get her back out there and get her to push her heart rate up.  Heidi tells her "You're so much more powerful than you think you are.  You just have to believe it yourself." Then they show her the video she made in the beginning.  She says that it's like being set free after being in jail.

Back home it's a struggle. She is finally working full time again in addition to working out and being a wife and mother.

At the end of Phase 3 it's time to weigh in. When she walks through the door Chris says she looks good, but he doesn't know if she met her goal.  He does see a positive difference though.

She tells him that her boobs hurt. They are too big for her frame now.  But the good news is that she has gone from a pant size 24 to a 12.  She's half her size. Now she's also built quite a bit of muscle. She is losing body fat and gaining muscle. She used to be 51% body fat.  Now she is 29%.

She weighs in and she's at 210. DOH!  she has only lost 37%.  Chris isn't sure if the doctor will allow the surgery.  He doesn't. She has a lot of extra skin, but she still needs to lose a little more.  So he offers that if she gets under 200 for the finale they will re-evaluate.

Time for the final weigh in.  Chris quotes Abraham Lincoln "It's not how many times you fall, it's how many times you get back up."  LOVE THAT.  She lost 138lbs.  She is now 197! WOO WOO.

So she gets re-evaluated and gets her surgery.  The doctor says that she will lose 6 square feet of skin. YIKES.

Several months later she goes to New York to visit with Dr. Ashton.  She pulls out a fajita meal that Sally used to eat.  It was 3700 calories.  There are 3500 calories in a pound of fat.

"I was digging my grave with a fork."

"I brought myself back from the dead.  Physical, emotional and medical."

She looks great and she has worked hard.  It wasn't always easy.  Not everyone can be perfect. That's why I liked her so much.  She succeeded even after all of her struggles.

Chris Powell you are awesome!

****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, August 27, 2012

Happy Anniversary!

Happy Anniversary Bleeps!

Wow...has it been a year already?  Feels like just yesterday that I started this Blog and at the same time it's hard to remember life before it. haha.

This has been such an incredible journey for me. I cannot thank you enough for all of the support you have given me this year.  But, that doesn't even compare to the joy I get from hearing how I motivate you.  The journey is not easy, but you are so not alone. I am happy to share my ups and downs with you to prepare you for your own journey.

Since I started this blog I have bared my soul and my secret desires.  Some I have fulfilled (the half marathon) and some I am still working on (personal trainer certification).  I have shared my numbers and have shared my story with the Huffington Post (including the dreaded Before shot). I have shared embarrassing moments and unexpected joys. I have reconnected with old friends through this blog and made new ones.  I love sharing my tips with you and hearing how your days are going.

So now it's Confessions time. Saturday I bought some Magnum Ice Cream bars. I had a coupon and I thought that the ice cream bars are better than I pint.  I can stop at one.  Well remember one of the first pieces of advice I gave you: If you buy it, you will eat it. It's been hot again and Saturday night I had one.  And then yesterday I was studying and all I could think of was that ice cream in the freezer. I wanted one sooooooo bad. I bargained with myself that if I finished the chapter I could have one. Awesome!  Well then I was on another chapter and I was not satisfied.  I went for a second. ARGH!  I am so mad at myself.

It's one of the reasons why I have had a problem studying.  Studying to me equals snacks.  I like studying during lunch at work because that's meal time and I've packed something healthy.  Studying during off meal hours is horrible for me.  If I am stressed and I don't quite get what I am reading then I want to eat.  It's how I coped for so many years. 

And here I am writing and all I want to do is go get one of the bars.  Why the heck did I buy them???  I am so not over this addiction. I cannot have any temptation around.  I'm stressed and can't handle this stuff. Maybe once I pass the exam I will be okay.  Maybe once I finish the Half I will be fine.  Maybe I will never beat this addiction.

It's no secret that I've been struggling studying.  I start to wonder what the problem is. Remember how bad I wanted to win the Fitness Competition?  Well times that by a million and that's how bad I want to be a Personal Trainer.  So why is that not my top priority?  I honestly can't tell you. I think part of me is scared. What if I'm not good enough? What if I can't find clients?  What if I get someone hurt?  What if I don't make a difference?  These are the easy fears...but the bigger one is about the unknown.  It would be a complete change.  If I can't find time to study, workout, and blog, then how will I be able to find the time to train people part time for a while?  I am burnt out as it is.

I wonder if I am self sabotaging myself again.  All I am hearing from people is how perfect I would be as a Trainer.  It's what I dream about.  So why the heck do I feel like I'm dragging my feet?  It's time to buckle down and make it happen. 

So thank you for an amazing year.  I can't wait to see what the next year brings.  I hope you'll stick around for the ride.

Have a Blessed Night.

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Jennie "the tool girl" Henderson

Hello Beautiful People!

Well yesterday was just plain incredible. I knew I was going to like it, but I had no idea just how much.  I also had no idea just how sore and tired I would be today.  I gave my all to Habitat for Humanity.  And I mean my ALL!  For those of you who don't know what that is, it's an organization that builds houses for people in need. The labor is mostly volunteer work. So yeah, I was helping to build two houses yesteday.

In preparation of the day I had originally planned on packing my lunch.  Then I thought about how hot it was going to be and figured that no amount of ice would keep it cool.  That meant relying on going out for lunch.  I wasn't thrilled with this, but I had faith in the almighty turkey sandwich.

I started my morning with oatmeal and a banana.  I grabbed one 20oz container of crystal light, a water bottle, and a protein bar.  And off I went.

I arrived 15 minutes early.  Still not sure how that happened, but yeah!  When I pulled up I noticed two things. First, there was no roof or walls.  We were in at the beginning.  Second, there was a community pool directly across the street.  It was a cruel twist of fate. Ironically, it never opened. So luckily we were not distracted by the splashing around all day, but it still called my name when I was sweating...which was all day.

Little miss prepared-for-everything was not quite on the ball.  I forgot suntan lotion and a hat.  Luckily several people brought the lotion. I was out of luck on the hat though....without a roof the sun was just beating down.

Okay so we had our welcome meeting which went something like "We'll use the galvonized nails for the blah blah blah wood and the other nails for the blah blah wood.  The blah blah wood is in this pile and the blah blah blah wood is the identical pile right next to is but they are completely different.  Got it?" um...sure.   CRAP.  What have I signed up for?

We were working on two townhouses. One had some of the lower level rooms framed.  And one had just the outside walls framed. My first task was to build a wall for the closet in the house with more walls done.  Okay, give me a hammer. We went and collected our wood and nails and got to it. The frame of the wall is put together on the ground and then you are bending over to hammer the nails in.  My first nail was a pain. I was having the hardest time.  All I could think was that it was going to be a really really long day if they are all like this.  But, I was hammering it into a knot and that was not cool.  Once I got it in the second nail was much better.  Halfway through the wall my forearm was killing me. And when I held my arms together, the right arm looked swollen. I looked like popeye. argh. I hurt and it was only 30 minutes in.

While we were working on our wall some measurements were taken and it was discovered that one of the walls was an eighth of an inch off. It had to be moved. Ugh. So while they got to doing that I got sent over to the other side. I got to sweep the area and begin the prep. We were going to be measuring and chalking the lines for the walls.  No pressure, but I just learned what a pain it is if they are off 1/8th of an inch....I'll take that hammer back please!

Actually the measuring made me nervous, but the chalking part was pretty dang cool. We used a string that is almost like a tape measure and we would run it through the appointed measurements and snap it against the ground.  The red chalk was leave a perfect line. I was a little too excited about it.

And then I somehow found myself over by the table saw. There were three of us over there to cut two boards (measuring and not losing a limb are pretty important). Alison made her first cut. It was a tiny bit short. Then I volunteered to cut one. I kinda really liked it!  And I made a great cut. Woo woo!

So in case you were wondering, I was drinking water like crazy...and I was in a complete panic because I did not want to have to use the porta potty.  When it was time to go get lunch I volunteered to go with some of the guys figuring I could use the bathroom wherever we went.  I didn't feel like I had to go, but I figured it was worth a shot.

We went to wawa and I got my turkey, cheddar, spinach, tomato, cucumber, ranch on whole wheat hoagie. I also picked up an apple and two propel waters.  At the register I was shaking.  My sugar was so low that I was looking for a tootsie roll to buy and eat immediately.  I couldn't find any and just grabbed a dark chocolate dove bar. It didn't even make it to the car.   But, I felt immediate relief.  Ahh. And yes, I used Wawa's facilities. Thankfully.

We saved the heavy work for the second half of the day.  We had built some more walls in the morning and the afternoon was not just building more walls, but lifting the big ones and moving them.  We're talking walls the full length of the house.  We're talking 8-10 people moving them at once. And it's not as if you can just lift them up.  It's heavy.  We're lucky to lift it 3 inches off of the ground. I felt strong. Somehow or another I always ended up further away from other people and carrying a little extra. But, I did it. Man, I am strong.  Seriously, I was constantly amazed all day at how much I was able to hang with the boys on the lifting.  That was pretty cool.  At one point I was walking around saying "I want to cut something!" And so I was given some measurements. I picked up some wood and took it to the saw...a little too much fun I tell you.

Sadly, we did have one injury.  During the lifting of the massive wall in was put down on one of the girl's foot.  She screamed bloody murder.  I felt so bad for her and offered her a muscle relaxer.  All I could think though, was Thank God it wasn't me.  I have enough trouble with my feet.

I was sad to see the day come to an end, but it had to eventually. I would have stayed longer, but I had a previous engagement to get to and oh boy did I need a shower.  But, I will most definitely volunteer again. I enjoyed getting to know colleagues from work that I had never met before.  We all worked together and had a lot of fun.

When I got to dinner I immediately took an aleve.  I still don't know what took me so long to do so. When I had gotten out of the car at home I could barely move. I was sore all over.  I was also hungry.  My protein bar had melted so I didn't have that to help.  And I was still thirsty.  I calculated that I had over 120 ounces of water...and I had only peed the???

I was meeting some childhood friends for dinner at Chili's for margaritas and appetizers. I was dying. I was so hungry. Looking at the appetizers was killing me, but I knew I needed a meal too.  Chili's has a light menu and I ordered the santa fe chicken wrap that comes with broccoli. Of course I also had a southwest roll and some  of the cheese fries, but for the most part I behaved...except for the 'non skinny' frozen margarita. But, I had a good day and I was celebrating with friends.

I still did not pee while I was out...and we know I am like clockwork.  I worked my ass off yesterday in the heat....but I did well. The former fat girl NEVER would have done that. If she had been forced to then she would have found every opportunity to sit or eat using 'hard work' as justification. This morning I could barely move when I woke up.  I am feeling muscles that I never knew I had.  My first thought was "you've gotta get up and get to the gym".  And my second thought was "Wow, look how much I have changed. Before I would have used this as my excuse for a week not to workout."

I didn't get the workout that I wanted in, but I still did 90 minutes on the treadmill. It's days like today that make it really obvious just how far I've come.

So now if you'll excuse me, Tony Stewart is racing at Bristol right now and I must pay attention...Tony Stewart 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.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Coming up: Habitat for Humanity and Stretching

Hello My Lovelies and  Gents,

I'm going to keep this short tonight (I say that a lot and then don't really hold to that do I?).  I have to get to bed early.  Tomorrow I am not going to the office. Instead I am heading out for Habitat for Humanity.  I'm very excited.

It's funny, all week I was mentally putting together my workout schedule and I had been thinking of tomorrow as a 'day of rest'.  And then I would stop and think about it.  I am going to be helping build a house.  That is far from a day of rest. So tonight at the gym I kept it to cardio again.  I didn't want to do any upper body weights and tighten up for tomorrow.  Plus, the last two days have been free chair massage days at work.  I signed up for each day.  Really need to work on that knot in my shoulder.  I felt so good after so I was not willing to reverse all of the good work done today.

I've said it before and I'll say it again.  Stretching and taking care of your muscles is so important. I cannot wait for my next stretching session.  Your body needs the relaxation to move forward.  That's why I like yoga so much.  Oh and go hit up Starbucks for their App pick of the week.  This week it is: Pocket Yoga - Practice Builder (Create custom yoga routines in minutes).

Since the Fitness Competition ended I have come to the conclusion that I need to drop the workouts to 5 days a week.  I need to allow myself an extra day of rest.  I am burning out with studying.  I can't keep up this pace.  I'll be no good to anybody as a Personal Trainer if I am too exhausted.

I've been talking to a lot of people lately and I am not going to put a hard date on the exam for myself. That is too much pressure.  I want to do this, but I want to do this right. The motivation is there, but I don't want to do this just for extra money.  I want to do this to really make a difference in people's lives.  So if I don't take the exam until November, that's okay too.  It's all about doing it right.  Plus, gotta save the money for the exam and that's going to take a bit.

I need the extra night to study and to just relax.  This weekend I have some of that planned! YEAH.  Of course, not until saturday night though. DOH.  Tomorrow I have Habitat for Humanity then I am coming home for a quick shower before heading out to meet up with my Childhood Peeps.  Saturday morning is blocked for Half Marathon training and then I have a bowling party in the afternoon.  Generally I am toast after a big training.  Saturday night I do not anticipate much more than tv or reading. Just vegging really.  But Sunday, well Sunday is Church, Stretch, and Study! I am going out of town the following two weekends and then we have the Half.  It's no wonder I am needing my extra day of rest.

So before I go I just want to say again how excited I am for tomorrow. The former fat girl never would have signed up for this. She always felt it was a wonderful program, but you would have been hard pressed to get her out there sweating all day and exerting energy. Tonight I say Bring It On!  I am stronger and more energetic than ever...and I have come to embrace my sweatiness. haha.

Have a wonderful night Bleeps. 

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Weekend Recap: Food Food Everywhere!

Happy Hump Day Bleeps!

Well as promised it's time for a recap from this weekend.

My original plan was to go to the gym Thursday night, pack, sleep, and then hit the gym Friday morning before I got on the road.  That was the plan anyway.  Then I started to think, well maybe I should just do yoga in the morning before I leave. So that was the second plan.  The reality is that my body said "Screw you I'm sleeping in!".  If you can call 8am sleeping...which I apparently do now.  -That's okay, I really did need some extra sleep.

So I got up, finished packing, and got on the road.  Even though I was leaving early I knew I would hit traffic and I did.  So I made sure to have a good breakfast before I left, but then I started to panic about lunch.  I didn't want to be stuck with drive-thru only.  I finally made it to Virginia around 1:30.  Later than I had hoped, but I ran straight to my favorite wrap/sandwich/smoothie place, Tropical Smoothie.  I got my Caribbean Luau flat bread sandwich.  It's got jerk chicken, pineapple, and skim milk mozzarella.  It's good...and it bites you back.

Next up was a trip to get my nails done.  I have beat the crap out of my hands with all of the weights and they needed help.  Ahhh...they look so pretty.  And then it was time to head over to my Aunt's house.  My mom was staying there to take care of my Grandmom while my Aunt was out of town.  The only plan that I knew of was that Grandmom wanted to go out to dinner.  We couldn't go far because we didn't know when my cousin's plane would be getting in (even though we kept telling her it wouldn't be until later). So we threw around some options and Outback won. mmm...Outback.

Around 4:30 I started getting demanding. I was HUNGRY.  Cousin Randy asked if I was all over the early bird special, but seriously, my food was all off.  Even though I hadn't worked out, I had not had nearly as much food as I should have. FEED ME NOW!

I was not going to make it until the food arrived so I jumped and ordered the chicken/artichoke/spinach flat bread appetizer. For my meal I went with the 6oz steak with green beans and the soup.  I contemplated the salad, but I wanted that soup. I was quite the happy camper once I ate.

Now the cool thing from the day is that I was wearing the shirt and skirt I wore in my Huffington Post "after" Picture  (  It was HUGE on me.  I still weigh the same, but dang the inches have dropped.  It was not flattering at all. Looked like I was wearing a sack.

We stayed up waiting for my cousin to come home.  He left for National Guard Basic Training in the beginning of the year and after graduation he went on to specialty training.  We hadn't seen him in a while. I got the biggest smile when he walked in and we hugged him.  The first thing he said to me was "You're much tinier than I remember."  I heart him!

So I love my Aunt's house.  There is always food around.  This used to be heaven for I work really hard to avoid the temptations. I'm not always successful.  This weekend's downfall was the bag of chocolate chips on the counter. I think I owe her a new bag. I dipped in to it way too often.

The other thing about going there is that the TV is almost always on the Food Channel for hours while I am there.  Now I have learned some wonderful things...but it's very hard to have that on all of the time.  Especially between meals. It makes me hungry when I really am not.  I did watch a wonderful show about some woman who was teaching kids to cook from the garden to the kitchen.  That was pretty cool. Fresh ingredients is always a plus.

Saturday morning I had planned on getting up early and going to the gym before the pool. I hit snooze forever...well for an hour at least.  Instead of the gym I opted to just go walk around the neighborhood for an hour. It was still early, but stinky humid...ugh. I was sweating before I reached the end of the driveway.  But, I stuck it out.  I walked for the hour and was pleased at how many other people I saw out there walking.  Now, they all knew where they were going. I was following a strict path because I didn't know all of the streets and I kid you not, there was intersections of Union Village Court and Union Village Circle.  Plus I found myself at Springstone Drive and Springstone Dr.  Nope, that isn't a typo.  I would have liked to adventure out further, but you can see my dilemma.

After the walk I ate some lunch, showered, put on my bikini and headed over to the pool. I needed some relaxing time...I think I actually fell asleep...ahhh.  Good Stuff.

After the pool I was getting ready before heading back over to my Aunt's.  I put on the TV and Date Movie came on.  I had never seen this and I didn't last 5 minutes.  I was HORRIFIED. The girl from How I Met Your Mother was in it.  She was in a fat suit and dreamed of finding love.  So the part that I saw had her running round the street dancing to "My Milkshake".  The men were horrified.  One shoots himself in the head with a nail gun instead of watching her.  Then there's her running after this group of men who look like they were running for their lives.  Yep, that really makes a fat girl feel good about herself. HORRIBLE MOVIE IDEA!

One of the things I had on my to do list was to look through old pictures looking for pictures from elementary school.  This meant a trip to the storage closet. In the closet I found a box of books.  And in that box were two folders. The folders were filled with recipes that I had ripped out of magazines over the years. Looking through them there isn't one I ended up keeping. Creamy. Fatty. Greasy. But, they were quick and cheap. Argh.  In that folder I also found a thigh workout that I had ripped out too. Kind of Ironic. That I did keep.

Sunday after church I took Grandmom to Starbucks. I was up late looking at pictures and I desperately needed caffeine before I got back on the road later. Thank goodness for Skinny Caramel Macchiatos.  Less than 150 calories in a grande.  I go even better and get a tall. Anyway, I called mom and asked what the plan was for lunch.  It was now 12 and we needed to think about that. I know she thinks I'm crazy because I become so focused on it, but I am on a schedule.  I'm worse than a baby. I need to eat at my appointed times. If I stray too much then bad choices are made. There was chinese at the house and while it's not the healthiest, I has small portions and was satisfied.

I had planned on studying over the weekend...and well I got none of that done.  Tonight was not a night at the gym.  I had one of my Fantasy Football Drafts. So I am done earlier than normal. And on that note, I shall sign off and study.  Right now I am on Nutrition.  The good news is that know a lot of it, but I am learning new stuff. I plan on sharing with you soon.

Have a blessed Night!

****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.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Boobs....we've all got them...some more than others

Happy Tuesday Bleeps! 

For you new readers I have coined the phrase 'bleeps' after peeps and tweeps.  I'm not sensoring myself. haha.

Okay, so let's just get down to it. Boobs.  I got em. And as much as they demand attention, they also get on my nerves.  Last night something new happened though.  I actually pulled a chest muscle while I was running.  It was bound to happen.  Even with the best bras they are flapping up and down and side to side when I am running.

I lift heavy chest weights twice a week and as much as I stretch, they are still a tad on the tight side. So it's really no great surprise what one good swing of the boob and it pulled a muscle. BAH!

I cannot even really describe the feeling. First, thank goodness it was not on the heart boob. I might have thought I was having a heart attack for a quick moment.  Second, I felt the chest muscle get tight.  I immediately started poking around with my fingers. You know, comparing both boobs (I am sure I looked hot and sexy haha). The left boob was fine.  I could feel the tightness in the right, but strangely the right couldn't feel my hand.  It was as if my boob was numb for a little bit. The top of the boob.  I wasn't down playing with my nipples on the treadmill out in the open for all to see.  That's not where the muscle is anyway.  PS, right about now my mom is having a stroke reading this.  Hi Mommie! Love you!

I have known for a while that I need to get some new sports bras.  I do not have the support that they once provided. They are bigger on me now.  There is more room for jiggle.  It was on my To Do list for before the Half next month, but it's now an urgent matter. Argh...trying on sports bras is like trying on wet bathing suits.

I did not go get one today which means I am either just plain walking or lifting weights tonight. No more running until I get that new bra.  I opted for walking on an incline for an hour.  I need to get my cardio in. The Half is less than a month away.

I know woman with boobs can run, but those who are without really have no idea what a pain in the ass they are.  Go fill ziploc bags with sand and stick them in a larger bra...that might help.   If it wouldn't hurt like hell I would duct tape them down before every workout.  They are heavy.  They move all of the time. They get be tender one week a month.  Argh.

I was talking to a friend last night who went to a spinning class. She loves the class but gets very frustrated when it's time to lean down on the handle bars.  Her boobs get in the way. Her instructor for the evening was a man and all she wanted to do was yell "YOU DON'T HAVE BOOBS!!!"

So the amazing thing is that as big as they still are, they were much bigger back in the day. They are still sizable. They are still a the heck is that small? How the heck did I walk upright? Now that they are smaller it's easier to sit upright.  I used to slouch so bad.

Tonight, even though I did not lift weights, I am spending time stretching my chest muscles.  I hope to have a stretching session this weekend, but stretching should be done every day.   It helps reduce injury.

Have I told you about my favorite boob trick?  You know how some muscle men can make their chest dance?  Well I love pumping a bottle of lotion on my dresser. It sounds silly, but in the mirror behind it and I can see my boob move up and down...I got me some good chest muscles!  te he.

Before I go, I shall tell you that sadly I have not seen Gym Crush 2 since I talked to him two weeks ago...*sad face*...Now there were two week periods before that I hadn't seen him so I'm trying not to take it personally.

Okay, it's study time. Have a wonderful night Bleeps.

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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

Monday, August 20, 2012

Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition - Jarvez

Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition - Jarvez

It was season finale time for Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition last night. Now don't fret, I have not forgotten that I still need to watch last week's episode, but it's football night so that will have to wait until another night. For now let's talk about Jarvez.  WOW.

Jarvez is 28 and from Portland, OR. He has been overweight since Middle School.  In fact, even back then he was encouraged to eat because it was 'manly'. His size helped him in college.  He was on the Oregon State Football team.  But, now he can't even get his 3X jersey over his chest.

Looking in the mirror he still considered himself Sexy, even though his family told him otherwise. 

He likes to call meals "snacks" because is sounds better. The irony is that he never did drugs or drank alcohol because it was "unhealthy".  But, you need food to survive.  And that became the justification he needed.

At one point, Jarvez had to call out of work sick because he had ripped all of his pants.  The Big and Tall store didn't have any in his size and had to be special ordered.

Sadly, his mom died when he was younger and he put on 258lbs.  Luckily, he was now married to Adriana and had a reason to fight for his life.

It was revealed to him that he was chosen by Chris during an Oregon State football game.  He always asks them where they want to be.  Jarvez just wants to be under 300lbs. 

So at the initial weigh the numbers are big: 548lbs.  Chris challenges him to do 50 push-ups from his toes. He does it!  WOW.  I love when Chris says that he's never seen anyone like Jarvez in the Fight or Flight workout.  There is nothing that he won't do.

Trainer Tip: There are approximately 17 minutes worth of commercials during a 60 minute program. Doing Jumping Jacks during the commerical burns calories.

Okay, so Jarvez loves Chinese food.  So they showed him how to make healthier versions.  I'm sorry, I was out of the room for it so I have no idea what they said.

Nutrition Tip: Start a meal with a broth soup or small salad.  Saves calories for the rest of the meal.

So the Phase 1 Goal: lose 135 lbs.   If he does that, Chris will give him 2 tickets to the Superbowl.

To get started Chris wants a Petty Cab bike ride around Portland. Sadly, Jarvez breaks the seat :-(

Chris is amazed at how great things are going.  Jarvez is pushing it and he is getting all of the support he needs from Adriana.  It's the recipe for success.

3 Month Weigh In
So the goal is to weigh 413lbs. He weighs in at 406!

The goal for Phase 2 is 80lbs.
I loved when Jarvez said: I plan to workout and eat right. If I stick to that, then good things will happen.


Jarvez and Adriana go out to dinner.  It's been a while.  He's been afraid.  He's afraid of the binge.  Oh mister I am right there with ya.  But, he does well.  He splits his meal into dinner and lunch for the next day. There was a plate of tortilla chips on the table (pure evil! just can't stop).  He ate one and said "I'm not missing anything". YEAH!

So at the Superbowl introduces him to his favorite player.  Ahman Green played for the Green Bay Packers. He gives Ahman the job of Trainer for the day.  He puts Jarvez through the NFL Experience.  NFL players should be able to do it in 10 seconds. Chris was hoping that he would be able to do it in 15 seconds. He nails it in 10.51 seconds.

So the problems start at day 140.  He has vertigo.  Spinning. Vomitting. It's not good.  He can't workout.  The days tick by and soon it is time for the 6 month weigh in.

He weighs 538lbs.  He's shy of his goal, but come on he couldn't workout for a month. And the bigger picture is that he has lost 190lbs in 6 months. Chris tells him that he sees strength and courage.  And then he asks him what would his mom say? She would be proud.

On his mom's birthday, Jarvez goes to her grave. He never went until the day of his wedding and now is was bringing his wife.  He is finally dealing with his emotions over his mom's death.

Jarvez takes his wife on a vacation.  They couldn't fly anywhere for their honeymoon because he couldn't fit in the seats.  So this time they flew to Arizona to a resort.  This was unlike any vacation he'd ever taken.  It was full of activities. Tennis. Yoga. And the Chris shows up and they go on a long awaited bike ride.  YEAH!

So now it's the 9 month weigh in.  His feet have shrunk.  We went from a size 18 to a size 15.  It seriously happens.  I am down from an 8 to a 6.5.

Weigh in Time: 284!  WOO WOO!  He lost 74lbs. He gets the Skin removal surgery.

Now it's time for the final Weigh in. First, Adriana gets a shout out for losing 45lbs. YEAH!

When Jarvez is revealed he was so cute.  "Today we can officially say that Sexy is back in style." YES IT IS! "Before I was upset if I had to get off of the couch.  Now I'm upset if I have to sit on the couch."

Okay, now it's time.  He lost 281lbs.  He weighs 267lbs! WOO WOO!  He went from a size 70 waist to a size 38.  In fact Walmart gives him a new wardrobe. As of that morning, he only fit in the outfit he was wearing and two pairs of shorts.

Chris brings out his college jersey and he has no problem putting it on. WOO WOO.

So fast forward several months. He had gained 20lbs as soon as the finale was over. So he started making some changes.  I LOVE this.  He doesn't drive to work anymore.  He takes the bus. He can't ask the bus driver to pull over so that he can get food.  So Smart!

And bonus...he and Adriana are expecting a little girl...Faye, named after his mom.

I cried and cried and cried at the end...but they were happy tears! 

****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, August 19, 2012

Seeing the weight roller coaster ride through pictures.

Hello Beautiful People,

Well I had a busy weekend and lots happened. I will need to break it up into a few posts though.   I had Friday off and went down to my mom's for the weekend. I hadn't been down there since Mother's Day and that's so not like me.  I needed a trip down to visit with my grandmom plus my cousin was coming home after his Basic Training and specialty training for the National Guard.  We haven't seen him since the beginning of the year.

I wanted to relax this weekend and yet I had so many things I wanted to do. Story of my life right?  Well one of the big things was to pull out the pictures from elementary school. I'm meeting up with some of my friends and their mom on Friday and I could not be more excited.  How great would it be to pull out pictures from back in the day?

Well that was fun...and stressful. I was the most adorable toddler.  I'm just sayin.  I was all smiles and with my blonde pigtails...well I don't know how I wasn't 'discovered'. haha. Those were the fun pictures that we pulled out. There were thousands of pictures from over the years and we lost hours looking through them...well most of them. I need more time to go through the rest.

There were lots of "awwww" moments...but you know that can't last.  Along with the awwws come the "EWWW I look so awful.  Please throw that out." Now I know that everyone has their "awkward" phases...but dang did mine have to last so long?  It's more than the bad hair choices (permed mullet is NEVER a good idea).  But, those I can live's watching the little girl gain weight that hurt.

I found pictures of birthday parties when I was the same size as my friends.  And then just a few years later I noticeably bigger than them.  Sadly, if you look closely, the big giant smile is not there.  I'm still smiling, but it's no where near as big as the younger skinnier me.

It took it's emotional toll on me.  There was so much smiling at all of the good memories.  And then in the same breath my heart would drop at an overweight picture.  I'm not going to lie.  I had the urge to eat the whole time I was looking at these pictures.  Now I know that I had not had my normal meals and snacks each day and I thought that was the reason.  But, now that I think about it, it was emotional eating.  I don't know how I didn't recognize that since it has been a problem practically my whole life.

I did find a picture from around age 5 of me in a bikini top and shorts (I did wear the bikini to the pool again this weekend...don't ask...this tanning of the belly thing is getting out of hand...gonna need to get a spray tan to look decent argh).  But that's the funny thing.  I had tan legs and arms and a white belly in that picture. haha...sadly, I also had skinny little arms and legs and yet my belly was not fit..not fat, but not matching the arms and legs :-(  BAH!

Alright, I need to log off now.  I did not get to study at all this weekend and I am about to fall behind schedule.  If I don't get cracking I am going to need to push my date back until November.  Plus I am watching Chris Powell and Extreme Makeover Weight Loss Edition...I heart him!

Have a wonderful night and I will fill you in on the rest this week.

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Happy Shark Week Everyone!

Happy Shark Week Bleeps!

Everybody sing with me now "It's the most wonderful time of the year...."  I have loved Shark Week for as long back as I can remember...heck, I used to watch Bug Week back in college too.  It's ironic as I have an intense fear of these creatures.  But man they are fascinating.

Shark week starts at the beginning of August every year (I can only assume it was late this year because of the Olympics...for which I am forever grateful as I think I would have had to quit my job to keep up).  I begin the countdown the day after it ends.

Well last year I was a bit distracted.  The day before Shark Week began I was visiting my grandmom at her new house. It's a cute little house in the country. My aunt was in town and we decided to all go out to dinner (my mom was there too). For some reason I decided I would ride with everyone and come back for my car before heading home instead of following them.

It was quite late when we got back and out where she lives the only street lighting is by star light and moon light. We hadn't left the outside light on.  Grandmom went first to turn the light on.  I followed behind her, but not closely. Now remember, it's I'm wearing shorts.

One minute I am walking and the next moment I have searing pains in my knees and I am rolling around in the grass screaming. What the hell just happened?  And why is no one running to help me?

It turns out that the sidewalk is not a straight shot.  There is a small extremely hard concrete step. My left foot (in my flip flop) hit the step which caused my body to trip. I did not have time to react and I couldn't see so I was not able to react by bracing the fall with my arms.  That may have actually saved me from more injury.  By some miracle I had a football hold on my pocketbook and that seemed to brace my fall.  It kept me from injuring my arms or even smashing my face. Amazing still, nothing was broken in the bag. Nothing braced my knees though which smashed the concrete.

Next it appears I rolled to the side into the grass and started screaming...but my grandmom thought I was laughing.  It took a moment before my mom realized something was wrong. And then she was running to my side. It took a moment to get me to stand up and a few more moments to get me into the house.  I could barely walk.  

Now I am an emotional person.  In general it does not take much for me to cry.  But, I have a high pain threshold and it takes a lot of pain to bring tears.  I was crying. I turned into the 5 yr old that jumped into the pool backwards and skinned her chin and needed stitches...seriously, concrete is not my friend.  So here I am with bloody knees and I'm sobbing "Mommie it hurts!"  It took a little while for the blood to start...thankfully because the roll into the grass meant flushing the debris out.  I had skinned both of my knees right below the knee cap.  There would be no stitches because there was no skin. There was also not bruising because I just bled out.

I was put on the couch with ice and my mom rubbing my back to calm me down.  But we had a problem. I didn't have anything with me to sleep over. No glasses. No contact solution.  No toothbrush.  It was 10:30pm in the country...there is no 24 walmart.  Eventually they went looking for a place.  We also needed big giant band aids. We had considered going to the emergency room, but we decided to make that call in the morning.

When they came back the pain had seriously set in.  I could not have been happier to see the little extra pick me up my mom got me: a dove chocolate raspberry bar.  Nothing soothes better than chocolate. Please note - I now keep an emergency bag in my trunk including an old pair of chocolate though.

Eventually I fell asleep and the next day was Shark week.  I spent the day eating more chocolate and watching on grandmom's ginormous tv (that's the way to do it!).  I could not bend my knees. And let me tell you, looking at all of those shark bite injuries was even more nauseating looking at my knees.

I did have to go home that night.  It took me forever to drive.  I had to pull over to stand up and adjust.  That was challenging, but the real challenge was climbing the stairs to my apartment. I had to wear skirts for about 3 weeks because I couldn't bend my knees.  Putting underwear on was even a challenge. 

I got made fun of at work because a snail could out walk me.  You know how much I have to pee and there was no "running" to the ladies room.  I was lucky that I didn't pee myself.  Try walking all day without bending your knees...and then times that by 2 weeks.  That's how long it took.  

Grocery shopping was a nightmare.  I couldn't walk around, but I needed food. And of course much chocolate was consumed at that time.

The pain was frustrating, but what was even more frustrating was that I couldn't get out there and walk. The Former Fat Girl would have relished this time.  It would have been so easy to hit the drive-thrus every night.  It was the perfect excuse.  And seriously, laying around watching tv was just about all I could do.  I was terrified that I would fall into old habits.  I could see the chocolate becoming a problem. 

I was the happiest person in the world when i was finally able to walk.  I needed to be very careful though because I was walking in the park on the path and worried about falling again on the concrete.  I still wasn't able to wear pants so I didn't have the extra cushion.

For the longest time my scars were really dark and very big (one is the size of a plum and one about the size and shape of my thumb).  They were actually very dark for a while.  Today they are still there, but not as dark.  I look at them every day and think how lucky I am that I didn't shatter my knee caps. I also think about how crazy it drove me not to be able to even walk for almost a month. That's what I think about when I start to feel like slacking. I would have given anything to have the body healthy enough to even walk.  You can't take that for granted. If you have the ability you have to appreciate it and use it.   So get out there and do something about it!

ps-I'll spare you the pictures of my knees from that time...just watch shark week and know it wasn't quite THAT bad :-)

****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, August 15, 2012

Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition - Jonathan

I''m a little behind because of the Olympics, but luckily I was not that interested in Monday's new Shark Week episode. So instead I watched Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition. 

This particular episode was about Jonathan.  Jonathan is 30 and over 500lbs. He is a father of two young boys and feels that he is depriving them of a childhood because he likes to eat.  When he's outside playing "catch" with the boys it's so difficult for him.  If the boys don't throw it directly at him to catch, then they have to run after the ball too.   When they were really young, the family went to go see the Globetrotters.  Jonathan could not fit in the seat and spent the entire game holding his youngest son behind the seats.  They never went to another sporting event.

Jonathan was fat growing up.  He was 235lbs even in high school.  That's where he met his wife.  Oh it made me so sad when he said "I'm sure she doesn't find me sexy anymore."  He doesn't even know how much he weighs.  He has a scale, but it maxes out at 500.  It says Error when he steps on it.  Sadly, Jonathan sleeps on the couch.  The bed is not comfortable for him.  He also has sleep apnea and that scares his wife.

"If I don't do it now, there won't be a future."....sad, but true

So when Chris goes to surprise Jonathan and tell him that he was selected, Jonathan had gone out for pizza.  When he walked in he saw all of his family and friends sitting there and immediately thought it was an intervention.  SURPRISE!

Chris always asks what they want. Jonathan's want is so simple it breaks my heart.  He wants to ride a bike with his family.

Training Tip: When asked which to do to burn the most fat, Weight Training or Cardio, Chris responds: Both. Cardio burns the fat, but weight training increased the metabolic count. Muscle burns fat even at rest.

Okay, so not it's time for the weigh in....543lbs

Before the workouts even start, they get right into the Nutrition.  Jonathan loves pizza.  So they make a pizza with pesto instead of sauce. They put on some tomatoes and cheese.  Instead of fatty meats, which are high in sodium, they use the cheese for protein.  The verdict: YUM.

*on a side note I had this tonight and it was delicious*

The Plan for Jonathan is 2000 calories a day.  This will be broken down into 5 meals at approximately 400 calories each.  He will also be working out 6 days a week for 2-4 hours.

Next up is the medical assessment.  In addition to the body mass index, they also do a study on his sleep apnea.  So the next day they take him to the pool.  They ask him to hold his breath under water for as long as possible.  He taps out at 11.8 seconds. Then they tell him that during the night he stops breathing for 26 seconds.  Does that not just scare the $#%^ out of you?

So the first big workout Chris calls the Fight or Flight workout.  You either fight for it or keep running from your problems. He challenges Jonathan to hold Plank for 60 seconds.  This is going to be tough.  First attempt: 8 seconds.  Second: 10.  Third: 18.  So then he challenges him to Farmers Walks. This is walking with heavy weights in both hands.

Nutrition Tip: Start your meal with a broth based soup or a small salad.  Studies show that people who do that eat 180 calories for that meal.

Okay, so now for the good stuff.  The 3 month goal is to lose 135lbs. The reward would be Mountain bikes for the whole family.  I have never wanted anyone to make that first goal so bad!  Jonathan breaks my heart when he says "Riding bikes means being a dad."

So by now we know that when they come back the house is different.  There is workout equipment and a kitchen stocked full of healthy food.  But, there was also a surprise...a new bed.  Jonathan told Chris that he had the best sleeps in a long time at Boot Camp so they got him the same mattress.  Chris pays for the food and even pays their salary for the first 3 months.  "It's their job to lose weight."

Early on they go out to dinner with his family.  Chris had asked them to write letters to him.  His brother had said that he sees them all making poor choices every day and vows to support him.  His wife says that it's very hard to see what life would be like without him, but that's a reality.  It was a good start.  Unfortunately, they all ordered crappy food. Chris was upset.

He was facing problems with Jonathan.  He seemed to be lost and not giving it his all. So they went to an airport...and he had him pull a 4000lb airplane one mile. I SO WANT TO DO THAT!

Training Tip: Without an incline, the treadmill is doing the work for you.  Always keep it at an incline of at least 1.0 (Noted...and I will do that now).

So time to weigh in: 408lbs.  He lost exactly 135lbs.

The goal for Phase 2: 80lbs.  It's going to be difficult.  Chris leaves and he has to go back to work.  The best part was the family out for a bike ride and Jonathan says that Chris Powell turned his son into a monster.  "Pick up the speed!" and "Do you feel the burn?"...too stinkin cute!

His daily schedule is now: waking up at 4:30 and hitting the treadmill.  Heading out to work at 6am. Sometimes working a 12 hour day.  And then another hour on the treadmill when he gets home.

Jonathan starts to lose his zest and his wife emails Chris.  So he comes back to talk to him....and then takes him to a gymnasium...with the Harlem Globetrotters!

At the 6 month weigh in Chris asks "Do you see it now?" And he does.  He looks GREAT!  He brings a shirt that he loved in high's too big now.  Sadly, the weigh in was only for 55lbs.  That's okay though.  Chris still rewards them with a trip to Disneyland!  He can finally ride a roller coaster.

The goal for Phase 3 is to get under 300.  He has 54lbs to go.

During this time he and his wife start competing in 5Ks....but does he make his goal?

Phase 3 weigh in: 298!  He did it!  He qualifies for the skin surgery. They actually showed his sons burying their head in the extra skin.

So for the final reveal the Globetrotters are back.  It's so cute.  Jonathan wanted to come in with smoke and flashing lights...he gets his wish...and pun intended he looks Smokin Hot!  Let's get down to it.  The goal was to weigh 293...he weighs 277!  He lost 266lbs!

Several months later his family has just gone on their first skiing trip. It's a whole new world for him.

He did have a day that scared him.  One day he had two meals and 6 donuts before lunch. But, instead of letting it get to him, he just focused on reprogramming his brain.  Good stuff!

I loved this episode!

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Fitness Competition Results are in. And the winner is.....

Happy Tuesday Bleeps!

Well today was the day.  The Fitness Competition Results were finally announced.  The big reveal was scheduled for 2pm.  I started to freak out around 11.  What if I didn't win?  Seriously, I busted my ass for this.  I know in my heart that I gave it all that I had. I was already a winner from it.  But, I cannot even begin to tell you how upset I would be if I didn't win.

I was begging Hottie Instructor to find out for me. I would still go to congratulate the winner, but I wanted to be prepared. I knew I would be THAT upset if I didn't win.  My cheeks would get bright red and I'm pretty sure there would be tears.  It's a freakin work competition.  It's not That big of a deal.  Except it me.  It was my challenge.

The Former Fat Girl would never EVER have done this.  She would have consoled herself for not being confident enough to even enter it with a box of oreos.  Have someone measure my waist?  I think not.  You are Crazy!  Get weighed in public?  haha I laugh at you.  Nice try.  It never occurred to her that she Could do it.  That she had it in her.

Shoot, they have had this competition for a few years and it's the first time I was willing to put myself out there.  So what changed?  I don't know.  Maybe it was starting this blog.  I tell you everything so what's the big deal about having someone pinch my fat (wince)?  Maybe it was completing the Half Marathon.  I definitely learned so much about myself.  I learned just how strong I am and what I am capable of. And so without hesitation I signed up this year.  I think we all know that I went all out.

You get points for that?  Okay, I'm doing it.  

I really want to take a night off.  Nope, you've got a competition to win.

I'm the only one in Boot Camp?  More points for me!

During the morning I went over to HR to pick up my 5 Year award and Lovely Carol who ran the Fitness competition said that she is supposed to go out at lunch and get the prizes.  But, it's pouring.  If the rain doesn't let up then the winners will just have to wait.  BAH!  So you know I sat at my desk looking out the window willing the rain to did. HOLLA!

Okay, so 2pm rolls around and Ms. Barb and I head over to hear the results. 40 people competing, and only 7 there to hear the results...hmm...disappointing, but less people to see me cry if I don't win.

Unsure if they should wait a little bit they started talking about competition.  It went a little longer than planned. Finishing around July 4th was tough with everyone on vacation. What did we like?  What didn't we like?  COME ON!  I think I was starting to have a heart attack.

Okay, so I of course was listening closely.  Alex asked Carol if she put the names on the envelopes.  She had not. But there was talk of her getting one more than needed.  What's this?  Overall Male.  Overall Female.  And three for the team winner.  OH crap....Fitness Competition Arch Nemesis Ryan's (FCANR) team lost a member. Did they win?  Did they beat me?

Then Carol asked me if Michel was why would she ask me about my teammate? Did we win? BAH I NEED TO KNOW NOW!

First the winners of the individual titles.  This was the first year that you could compete as an individual or as a team.  No, you could not win team and individual.  So the overall female was not there. But she got kudos for her events points. The overall male was there.  He lost 5% body fat.  Go sir.

And then it was Team time...."This team was led by an enthusiastic and energetic member...the winning team is the.......*seriously SPIT IT OUT*  The Ducks!"  In my head there were balloons and confetti raining down on me.  They didn't let me give a speech, but...haha.   It turns out we just edged out FCANR's team.  But, wait....the third member of our team didn't have her assessment.  We won even without that. I BEAT FCANR!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I could say that all day..too bad he wasn't in the room to hear it. BAH!

So I won a gift card to Season's 52 which is a wonderful restaurant by work. I had done a post on them in the very beginning.  They use seasonal food which makes it fresher.  They buy local and all entrees are under 475 calories. YEAH!  When I ran into FCANR he said I could take him to lunch...hahah...nice try.  Although anyone who wants to come may...but you're on your own paying.  haha.

I was so happy that I could feel my body just breathe and relax.  It was a good day.

****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, August 13, 2012

Polka, Phil, Pretzels, and More!

Hello My Lovelies and Gents,

Well it was a jam packed weekend let me tell you.  So let's get started.

I got up early on Saturday to hit the gym first off. I was there a little later than usual on Friday (thanks to Gym Crush #3 which was former #1).  So it was super hard to get up early.  My body was screaming "You have gone insane this week...let's take a rest day a day early!"  And knowing now how the rest of the day went, I might have used that extra time to sleep in.

My tank was EMPTY.  I had planned on a morning of cardio, but I had nothing in me.  So I did 15 minutes then decided on leg weights.  The quad machine was occupied so I went straight over to the fabulous Bad Ass Butt Machine.  Right now you can bounce a quarter off of mine!  And then I moved to the thighs.  Outer then inner.  Soon I was off for some abs and then back on the treadmill for 15 more minutes.

I came home showered and then I was off to go see Former Work Husband Phil.  I had a banana and a piece of bread with peanut butter before the gym.  Then I had a protein bar after my workout. The plan was to be at Phil's by noon, but I got a little later start than I wanted.  So I was starving when I rolled in at 12:30.

His lovely girlfriend Jen was going to stay home and cook us dinner (along with some studying of her own).  So Phil and I headed down to Musikfest by ourselves.  It's about a mile away and we were going to walk it. Don't you love when your walk at the beginning of the long day is downhill?  That can only mean one thing...the way back is uphill!

It was hot, but I brought a water and was all good.  But, I was stinkin HUNGRY.  So Musikfest is not really the best place for food.  For music yes, food no.  Although if you want something fried that is the place to be.  Fried Chicken.  Fried Fish.  Fried Pickles.  Fried Twinkies.  Fried vegetables.  Fried oreos...mmm...oreos...FOCUS!  There was pizza.  There was bbq.  There were gyros.  There were french fries. There were cheesesteaks.  There were some salads, but  nothing with a lot of veggies.  I couldn't figure out what to eat.  I wanted BBQ pulled pork so bad, but after the night before I had no idea how my body would react and my only options were port-a-pottys....ick!

But alas, that's what I wanted.  I found a place that offered little sliders.  Okay, I'm good with that.  So I got that with no fries.  But, I got a diet soda too to help me burp.  And the sliders were gooooooooood.

So then we were walking around a little longer and we went into the kiddie area.  People were walking around with Peeps bags.  Intrigued I needed to find out more.  there was a tent offering free peeps.  Sure, they are on the old side (christmas and valentine's day).  My head said "stay away", but my feet walked me over.  I got the vanilla cream ones. 

After that we walked back to the Polka tent.  Oh yeah!  That was the plan all along. We were so excited.  The Polka tent was PACKED!  We sat for a few songs and then jumped out there...and it was fairly obvious very quickly that we do NOT know how to polka.  We had fun, but a lot of the movements we made just hurt my knee. So we ended up sitting for most of the time.  Although I'm fairly certain I was burning calories fanning myself (so freakin hot....sweat dripping down my legs).

It's hot. It's a festival.  I'm getting ice cream. I think Phil was ready to smack me.  I stood there for 10 minutes trying to decide which flavor.  When you don't have it that often it's hard to choose.  I opted for Coconut...yum.

So we walked down Main Street and started to head home.  But wait!  "Free sample of our pretzel nugget?" yes. OH DEAR LORD that was heaven in my mouth...I was still a little hungry (three sliders do not cut it) so I bought a pretzel.  I hated that I did it, but I was hungry and all things fried surrounded me.

We walked up the hill and got back to his place in a pretty decent time...just soaking wet.  Luckily I had brought an emergency bag so I got to shower and freshen up before dinner...ahhh.

Dinner was fabulous!  Phil's dad and stepmom were joining us.  I heart them.  I had met them at the Jimmy Buffett concert a couple of years ago. They are so much fun.  And they loved the food too. We started with a salad. Phil got out the extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar for my dressing.  He's so good to me.  The main course was manicotti.  There was one with deer meat (leaner) and one with no meat.  The side was a dish of roasted peppers (garlic, basil, and balsamic vinegar).  Oh it was heaven.  The manicotti was made with crepes not pasta and it was so light and delicious.  My belly wanted seconds, but I was full with one serving.

So then it was time to go to the ballgame.  YEAH!  Our tickets were general admission.  The means no seats.  We are standing.  My legs were not happy with me.  First the legs workout, then the polka, and then the walking all day.  Standing for the baseball game was not cool.  I was worried that I would cave and get some snacks. It all smelled so good.  But, I bought a bottle of water only.  YEAH!

And then the rain came.  What?  It poured.  So we were standing under the roof of the bar and Phil went over to the pretzel stand.  It was close to the end of the night and they were selling bags of pretzel bites cheap.  So he got some and handed one to me.  I ate it.  DOH!  Second pretzel of the day.

I was sad to head home, but soon it was time. I was sleepy so I stopped at the Rest Stop with the 24 hour Starbucks....oh heck yeah!  I did not stop there on the way up because I assumed I would be drinking a lot of soda between Musikfest and the game.  Wanna know something?  I didn't even finish the 20oz one that I got.  I got an unsweetened green tea to help keep me awake for the drive.

It was an exhausting day, but I had so much fun. I knew it was my cheat day and that's okay. I'm pissed about all of the pretzels, but I'll live.  The problem is that they are like cocaine to me.  One taste and I want MORE!  Luckily I did burn them off that day.  And let me tell you, my body was so happy for my rest day on Sunday.

It was a good day.  I went to church and then went to meet my friend Bibble (from the Polar plunge).  We were meeting at Starbucks and then heading our for a pedicure.  I was super tired but I didn't want to go crazy so I got the skinny caramel machiato.  I asked if she wanted lunch.  She had a late breakfast but I needed to eat.  So I got a multigrain bagel.  And then it was time for pedicures...ahhhh...possibly the best foot/leg massage I have ever had.  It was awesome.

Then we went back to Starbucks just to sit and catch up. It had been a while. It was Treat receipt time, but I couldn't do another coffee. So I had the Berry Hibiscus refresher.  It was tasty.

Soon it was time to meet my long lost friend from elementary school.  I picked Applebees for the 550 calorie menu...but I hadn't eaten much and things smelled so good. I had a burger...and fries.  Bah!  And then a chocolate mousse with oreo shooter.  DANG IT!  But, shake it off.  It was a wonderful night.  We talked for hours and can't wait to get together again (already planned for next weekend woo woo).  It was my day of rest  and apparently my menu rested too.  DOH. 

Okay kids, it's time for bed...and some more Shark Week...woo woo!

Have a Blessed Night.

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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

Friday, August 10, 2012

Even the Queen Passes Gas

Happy Friday Bleeps!

Holla for Fridays!  And what a Friday it was. It was cloudy on the way to work and shortly after I arrived the rain started. Okay, it was more like a monsoon.  So it's Friday.  I had a good run last night.  I was up watching the Olympics into the weee hours of the night.  And now it's raining.  It's a recipe for a sleepy day.  I couldn't wake up.   Why doesn't Starbucks deliver?

Miss Kerri, Ms Tracey, and I had come up with a plan that once a week one of us would run out to Starbucks and get something for everyone. Today would be the perfect day....except for the monsoon.  So we decided to wait it out.  If the rain stopped then Ms Tracey would head out....and that happen around lunch time...YEAH!  I offered to go with her.  That's always a battle.  I love my Starbucks, but the second I walk in all I want is a cake pop or a cookie.   I can resist 80% of the time and today was one of those times. Woo Woo.

Once I was awake I could come up with my plan.  I would be hitting the gym tonight and then again in the morning before I head out to hang out with former Work Husband Phil. YEAH!  My plan was to do weights tonight and cardio in the morning.  Fridays are good for weights because I generally have my pick of which machine I can get. I was trying to decide between upper body or legs.  Last night my legs were super tight for my run so I decided to go with upper body.  Now of course I'm not gonna lie.  I was secretly hoping Gym Crush #2 would be there and maybe we could lift together.

Amazingly there was very little traffic on my way.  When I was five minute away I got the text that my Friday night dinner crew were at Chick-Fil-A.  It's been a while so I pulled over.  I would just eat and then head over to the gym.  I got brave and just ordered the grilled chicken sandwich.  Not the meal.  No waffle fries tonight no matter how good they are.  We had a great dinner and I even got a kiss from my little boyfriend Andy.  He's 2 and quite the gentleman.  He spent the whole time trying to shove his food in my sweet.

As soon as I was done it was time to head to the gym.  Before I even got in my car my belly was unhappy.  Crap. I don't like to eat a meal before my workout for just this reason. My pants felt super tight and I just didn't feel good.  But, I'm still going.

So I pulled in, signed in, and then headed to the locker room to change. Even after I peed my shorts felt tight.  Argh.  Gym Crush #1 was heading out as I was coming in so I thought it might be okay.  I hadn't seen Gym Crush #2 so I think it might be a Crush Free workout.  So I go and find a treadmill close to the local sports channel tv with the closed caption.  That just happens to be over by the weights.  I wanted to be by this tv though because the Phillies were inducting one of my favorite players into their Hall of Fame and I wanted to watch the ceremony.

Former Phillies catcher Mike Lieberthal was being inducted.  He was the catcher back when I worked with the Phillies and I simply adore him.  He was one of the nicest guys and I could not be happier about their choice to induct him.  It started to get emotional watching the tribute to him. Lots of memories came flooding back...mostly the food.  I'll go into in a later post, but just imagine working at the ballpark and just how many hot dogs you can consume.

So I'm on the treadmill and I decide that I want to stay on to watch the ceremony and do weights in the morning.  And that's when I spy Gym Crush #4 over on the weights.  Nice. Oh but wait, what was that?  Searing pain in my belly.   Again this is why I don't like to eat before I workout.  Crap. I have gas. I will stay on the treadmills, but no running.  I don't even want to think about the farting that would go on while I was running. I am not that kind of girl!

I focused so hard on the induction ceremony that I didn't even notice Gym Crush #3, formerly #1, come in.  HELLO!  OH seriously? My butt was clenched so hard to keep from passing gas. I know what you are thinking.  Jennifer, just freaking go to the bathroom.  Well I tried that.  Nothing happened.  It hurt, but it wasn't ready to come out.  A Gym Crush 1, 3, and 4 night just became torture for me.  I made it through the night without letting it rip, so to speak, in front of these cute boys.  And I guess the bonus is that I worked my butt muscles so much that they have to be a little tighter.

Now I simply like to torture myself even further I signed up for the massage chair too.  My back was still a little sore from my angry workout the other night.  But, then GC#3 came over and was lifting in front of me and it was totally worth it.

He was still going strong, but I had to get home.  And just as there is a no food rule in my car there is also a no farting rule...and that includes me.

I know by now my mom is screaming "YOU ARE SHARING TOO MUCH!" haha, but that's what the Confessions is about. I share this type of personal information for a few reasons.  First, you don't always have control over your body functions and reactions.  Second, if it happens to you, just know that you aren't the only one.  Third, and most important, exercising is important, but so is eating properly.  If you don't eat properly you probably aren't going to feel good when you are exercising.  They go hand in hand. In general a grilled chicken sandwich should not make me feel this way, but when you cut out fast food and greasy food, even grilled chicken from a restaurant may make you react.

Alright kids, it's time to get some sleep.  I will be out all day I will catch you on Sunday. Have a wonderful weekend.

****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, August 9, 2012

Crushin on the Olympics

Hello my Lovelies and Gents,

So let me just say it.  In case you haven't figured it out, I'm crushin on the Olympics.  I have always enjoyed them, but man I really cannot get enough.  I realized as I was walking in to work this morning that I had to really think about what day it was.  Without a sitcom frame of reference from last night I had to think it through. haha.  Luckily I am well aware that tomorrow is Friday. HOLLA!  But, I hadn't even realized that preseason football was going on tonight. DOH.  That is so not like me.

I loved the Olympics when I was little because it was every day people competing.  For the most part, the majority of the athletes still have day jobs.  But, with sponsorships and more TV exposure many of the athletes are professional now. So shout out to the athletes that paved the way.

Now that I am taking care of my body I am well aware of the dedication of these athletes.  Before I just enjoyed it, but now I appreciate it.

So let me shout out some of my favorite moments.

Today a USA runner competed on a broken leg. WHAT?  Manteo Mitchell heard his leg break as he started the relay for the Men's 4x400 relay. Seriously, WHAT? This man ran on a broken leg and the team qualified for the finals. WHAT?  Mad Respect for you Sir!

Today was also a pretty historic was the first time a Saudi Arabian woman competed in a track event. Sarah Attar was last in her heat, but she won the heart of the spectators.

Allyson Felix!  DANG GIRL!  She has won the Silver Medal in the women's 200 twice...but FINALLY she got her Gold yesterday.  I knew she had won, but I was still sitting in bed screaming at the TV.  I want her abs!

One of the most amazing stories is of the legally blind archer.  Yep, you read that right.  South Korean Im Dong-Hyun started losing his site as a teenager.  First of all, his sight is 20/100 in the right and 20/200 in the left.  Well, okay, I'm more blind than that.  I am 6.5 in each eye which is approximately 20/800.  Perhaps he cannot wear a corrective lens because he aims at the blur.  And he beat the record this year. Dang.  There is hope for me after all!  Although I would prefer to wear my contacts.

Kerri Walsh and Misty May Treanor!  HELLO!  Three Gold Olympics world they ain't spring chickens, but they have the experience and the talent.  How could you not get swept up in their excitement...and how could you not want to have your legs sprout and look like Kerri!

You know I'm Crushin on Oscar Pistorius.  Well in the relay qualifying round the South African team suffered an injury.  They thought their time was over, but there was a review and they were sent to the finals on a technicality.  Oscar lives to race another day!  HOLLA!

I really tried hard to avoid the spoilers today.  I wanted to see how the Decathlon ended by watching.  After five events American Ashton Eaton was leading American Trey Hardee. I couldn't do it.  I peeked...Eaton won!  Hardee came in second.  Even Usain Bolt showed them respect.  He is the fastest, but they compete in 10 events....Eaton earned the title "World's Greatest Athlete".

I could go on for days and I haven't forgotten Swimming and Gymnastics, but they were the stories that everyone heard about.  These are just some of the stories that have held my attention this year. 

I'm sad that it's almost over and am really looking forward to Brazil in four years....more importantly I'm looking forward to Shark Week starting on Sunday!  I wonder if I can get the gym to put the Discovery Channel on one of the TVs...although that may be too gross for the treadmill.

Have a Blessed night my Friends.

Check out my Facebook Page for Confessions (there are before and work-in-progress pictures):

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

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