Tuesday, August 31, 2010

August Goals Recap

I am writing some content in advance of my vacation, as I wanted to give my readers some updates while I am away. This is a scheduled post.

Well here we are at the end of another month, and it's time for another monthly goal recap. My August goals were:
  • Write down my food, for at least one week. Challenge yourself to take it one step further and TRACK said food intake. - WIN!
  • Strive for 4 days of activity. (walk/c25k run/zumba/gym/whatever) - Fail(ish)
  • Attend Weight Watcher meetings every week - Fail(ish)
  • Start studying for HAM radio exam - In Progress
  • Clean the inside of my car - WIN!
  • Host a giveaway on my blog - fail

All in all... I sucked this month. I wasn't really aware of my goals, and didn't do a good job keeping track of things.

I did not keep track of my activity. Although I did get so level of activity each day in, I didn't keep track of it, so I am going to give myself a big old FAIL on that one.

I was doing very well with attending my Weight Watcher meetings each week, however last week, due to a meeting and work conflict, I could only weigh in and not stay for the meeting. Even though I failed at this goal, I am still planning on attending a weigh in and meeting while on vacation. Which I do think is a success on my part. I am not giving up and still committed to the long term journey and goals that I want to achieve.

While on vacation, I am taking my HAM book with me and I do plan on studying and actually reading up on testing for my HAM Radio Operator's License.

I finally got around to cleaning the inside of my car, it was all dusty and dirty and was in dire need of a vacuum and a cleaning.

Finally hosting a giveaway on my blog, yeah, I haven't gotten around to that and with the vacation, it's just not going to happen before the end of the month. I am going to re-commit this goal next month and hopefully you all will be able to see this in the works soon.

Of course the one goal that I did well this month was tracking my food! To be honest, I didn't have high hopes for this, I wanted to challenge myself, and I do believe I succeeded well! Of course Jen issuing the tracking challenge helped tremendously. I've tracked at least 2 weeks worth of food. Although no consistently, I went 9 days of tracking consistently before last weekend (August 21-22). Moving forward, I am planning on to continue tracking my food, I saw losses at the scale when I track consistently, and it works. It makes you more focused and aware of what you are eating/drinking.

Overall, even though I had more failures that successes, I am committed long term to my journey and I do believe there is long term changes happening within myself and my mindset. I am excited for the future.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

What a Summer! (Product Review)

This summer has flown by! Thankfully, this summer has been great, weather wise. Many days of sun and nice weather. I've had the opportunity to enjoy a lot of summer activities. I wanted to be outside as much as possible to enjoy the warmth that summer offers.

One of the events I went to this summer was hiking a 4200 foot mountain! Don't mind the red face, it was a lot of work to hike that mountain, but I didn't get a burn! I reapplied the Liquid Daily Sunblock once during the day and it worked wonderfully!

However, I was always aware of the sun and my skin. I had many chances to use my Neutrogena UltraSheer Liquid Sunblock. I've found that this works great on my skin, especially my face. My face is combination type skin and it has a tendency to break out when the pores are clogged. I am happy to report after using Neutrogena's product, my skin is breakout free!

I love the light feel of the product, it's not greasy at all.

Would you like to review UltraSheer®, too? Then go to http://www.giantwavepool.com/ultrasheer!

Or get $2 off your UltraSheer® purchase at http://www.neutrogena.com/suncoupon.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received the product mentioned above for free for review purposes from Tidal Labs. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

New Kid on the Block...

I've joined a new online community to help embrace and promote a healthy living and positive community.  

Healthy Living Blogs is a new resource for the health blogging community. Created by Lindsey of Sound Eats, HLB is a site designed to enhance the positive community of the healthy living blog world. Bloggers and readers can explore the site and find more blogs to love, bloggers in their area, and forums to deepen healthy discussion and support. If you're interested in having your site listed on HLB, simply send the following information to healthylivingblogs@gmail.com and check the site out for yourself!
  • Email subject line: MEMBERS
  • Your name (please share if you prefer to go by first name, first and last, or however you prefer to be known on the Internet)
  • Blog Name
  • Blog URL (please start with http://, not www.)
  • Your twitter handle, if applicable
  • Your location (if you prefer not to disclose this information for privacy's sake, that is completely understandable. We'll simply include your blog listing in the A-Z listing, not by location, too)
  • Any specific labels (i.e. vegan, gluten-free, weight loss, running, etc.)

Weigh In

Well I had to weigh in a day late due to a professional meeting. So when I went to weigh in today, I didn't stay for the meeting, I had to get to work. So I will miss that goal for August, which I am a little bummed about. However I am leaving on vacation on Sunday and I have a lot of stuff to get done before I leave.

Last Week's Weight: 290
This Week's Weight: 290.8
Gain: 0.8

Total Loss: -23.0

So I had a small gain this week. I didn't track the last half of the week, so I totally anticipated a small gain. This coming week I will be on vacation to Bar Harbor Maine. DBF is from Maine originally and has family in the area. I am looking forward to being on vacation and getting to spend time with DBF and his family. I've already looked and found a weight watchers meeting up in the area, so I plan on staying on track while on vacation.

I will begin tracking my food again beginning tomorrow (fresh start). Currently I am drinking some Crystal Light and water, I just can't seem to get my thirst quenched. I guess it's better than eating ice cream.

One Bite, One Decision...

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Random Updates

So I had my first problem with my Gruve. I wasn't able to sync with my computer. I was able to plug it in and charge it, but it wouldn't sync. After finally getting an e-mail from a gentleman with some troubleshooting ideas, I went home to try and fix my issue. I went through all of his suggestions (even uninstalling and reinstalling the program) with no success, I hunted around and found a spare USB cord so I plugged it in and crossed my fingers. It worked!!! It synced no problem! I was thrilled. I found it weird that the cord would charge the unit but not sync the unit. Ugh. Either way, I asked Muve (the company that makes the Gruve) about sending me a new USB cord for my unit.

I am so happy that I was able to sync and download my data, I didn't want to loose any this week! Although I was in yellow for 2 out of the 3 days I wasn't able to sync, I think it's important to have an accurate record.

Tomorrow a whole group of my friends and DBF and his friends are getting together for our annual Water Country trip. I am looking forward to hanging with some friends that I don't get to see all that often anymore. It stinks that I can't wear my Gruve, I'd like to see how many calories I burn while walking around a water park and swimming. I wish there was a way to manually enter activity into the Gruve system so you could at least keep track if you did activity.

DBF and I are being smart and planning ahead, we are packing some healthy snacks and sandwiches for the day, instead of eating the fried food there. We are bringing a big pitcher full of Crystal Light instead of buying soda (especially me, while I am still on my soda free summer challenge).

Of course with all my running around and planning for tomorrow, I forgot to get dinner for tonight! So I ordered out and got one of my old nemesis.... Steak and Cheese Sub. YUM Of course it came with greasy onion rings, I only ate about 6 inches of my 8 inch sub and threw out the onion rings. Actually looking at them made me sick to my stomach. I do believe I've kicked my habit of onion rings. They just don't look appealing to me anymore. And even now just sitting here, the Steak and Cheese is just sitting in my stomach like a lump and it's not a great feeling... the downfalls of not planning ahead.

I do believe when you are eating better and healthier that your body gets used to it. So when you go back to your old ways, your body revolts, almost as a way of saying, hey you... you are doing so good, don't you dare go back to the old way...

Believe me, I'm not... It may take some time for the weight to come off, but I still want to enjoy my life while on this healthy journey. That is what I really love about Weight Watchers, they teach you how to lose weight while eating every day foods, and still be able to enjoy the foods you love. Although I am finding that the foods I used to love, I no longer crave or crave less of. Of course, aside from ice cream, sigh....

In other news, I am very much looking forward to my vacation next week. DBF's family has a summer cottage up near Bar Harbor, it's just such a relaxing and fun time. DBF has a knack for picking vacations and having great weather, so I am hopeful that this year will be no different. I do need to look into about seeing if there is a Weight Watchers meeting locally up there, as I would prefer to still weigh in and go to the meeting (Gotta keep up with my monthly goals!). Since we have the cottage we typically have most meals there and only eat out once or twice. So as long as I keep my snacking in check and make healthy decisions I should fair ok. I do plan on bringing my Gruve and keeping it green all week! I am sure I can convince DBF to go for a walk or two if needed ;-)

Since FitBloggin' 11 was announced, twitter has been aflutter with everyone talking about going or thinking about it. I'd really like to go, as far as conferences, it's really not that far away. Baltimore is a great location and May is a great time to be there! I am going to try and see if I can get a sponsor to help with some of the costs. Typically Southwest does some great deals out of Manchester to Baltimore and I could possible get a roommate to help cut down on hotel costs. I jokingly offered to Kerri from Kat Does Diets on twitter, and she said if she goes, she'd be my roomie! Of course DBF thinks the whole Fitbloggin' idea is funny, and thinks it's funny that I'd just randomly agree to pair up and get a roommate for the weekend... Kerri, he's hoping you aren't a serial killer or anything.... just saying.

Lastly, since using Networked Blogs on facebook and posting my updates over there, I've noticed a dramatic increase in my traffic, I am assuming it's my IRL friends checking up on me. Most of them know that I am actively trying to loose weight, but don't really know how I blog about it all the time.

**Hi Real Life Friends**

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Facebook Status with Food

Are you single and ready to mingle or It's complicated when it comes to food?

If you aren't living under a rock, you know of facebook and probably have an account even. Ever notice the relationship status? And how now a days, it's a big event if you change your status?

(Image Source)

I recently overheard one girl say to another "Like, so you are like facebook boyfriend and girlfriend?" "Like he changed his status for you?" I didn't realize that times have changed. But it's not that long ago that one would pass a note in class, saying "Do you want to go out, check yes or no".

How about when it comes to food; what is your relationship with food?

Are you single? Ready to mingle and eat with reckless abandon.
Are you in a relationship? And eating consciously, taking into consideration, your healthy relationship with food/calories
Is it Complicated? Are you still trying to figure things out, how to juggle it all and make it work
Engaged? Congrats, you've got it mostly figured out and are working on perfection!
Married? You've attained blissfulness with your relationship with food, and life is a breeze, right? You don't need to count calories, you are making smart food choices and working at it, after all, marriage takes work sometimes, right?
Divorced? Have you given up trying? Thinking about being single again or starting over for a new relationship?
Widowed? Perhaps you've had a traumatic experience or life changing event that shakes you to your core, and you need to start over again, after you've had time to process things.

I think we all go through life experiencing these different relationships with food, in some form or another.

If you had to say today, what your facebook relationship status would be with food, what would it be?

Weigh In

Well as I posted last night I wanted to get back into the swing of things and get back on my regular meeting date.

Last Week's weight: 291.8
This Week's weight: 290
Loss: -1.8

Total loss: -23.8

I'm feeling great. Tracking works people. (Not a new concept, eh?) This is my second time using Weight Watchers to loose the weight, and both times I started out not tracking. Jen posted a tracking challenge and for me, it works. It may be tedious and difficult at times, but it keeps me mindful of what I'm eating. For me, it stops the mindless eating, I am more aware of what I am eating, if I have to track it.

I've also been mindful of getting my Gruve green consistently and getting my activity in.

I am really excited about this turn of events and re-commitment to my weight loss journey.

The meeting topic this week was about fitting in those filling foods and how filling foods help keep you feeling fuller longer. The members of the meeting then really started talking about fitting the healthy oil in. For me, I enjoy my popcorn cooked in oil. Low in points, it also counts as a filling food. Instead of butter, I pop it in some oil and use a little garlic salt to season.

I am feeling really good! I wish you all successes at the scale this week!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Tracking Day 7

Wow, a full week of tracking. A big thank you to Jen for issuing a personal challenge, that I took on myself as my own challenge. I really needed this wake up call. I have a lot of resources at my disposal that I wasn't using to it's fullest potential. I am paying for weight watchers and I hate paying to gain weight. So I need to use all the tools that others have proven are successful.

Moving forward I am going to continue tracking, obviously it's working for me to keep me mindful and stop the mindless munching!

I love ice cream, really it's my biggest weakness, as of late, I've been craving coffee shakes. Those are not very point-friendly. While I was at the grocery store, I saw that Bolthouse has a Mocha Cappuccino drink, it actually tastes pretty good on it's on, however I blended it with a couple of ice cubes and voila! It tastes very similar to a coffee shake! And 8 ounces is 4 points. Not a bad snack or after dinner treat! It's also got a lot of protein in it, which would help keep you satisfied longer.

My Gruve has been green for 3 days straight. It seems that I don't have a problem when I am off from work, but when I am at work, it's very difficult to get my Gruve to green. I am going to have to work on some solutions to help with that.

Today, I ate 30 of my points. So technically, I still have 4 points left for the day, but since it's late in the evening, I highly doubt I'll be using them.

While at the grocery store, I came across this juice and thought that I would share it with you. I love watermelon and this is actually a light flavor. I think it would be good as maybe a slushy or as a base in a smoothie. It's ok by itself. Satisfies that juice craving for only 2 points a glass!

 I am going to weigh in tomorrow, not sure what to expect, it's a little short since I just weighed in on Friday. However I'd like to get back on track with my regular meetings/weigh in day.

Tracking Day 6

Another full day of summer fun! DBF and I got up early and headed to Hampton to see my parents for breakfast while DBF helped out with a couple of computer problems they were having. Dad and I were able to talk and he showed me his garden, my goodness it was overflowing with vegetables. Ben and I went home with a grocery bag full of cucumbers and big tomatoes and cherry tomatoes.

After Ben had finished with the computer issues, we went to my work to help volunteer for the MDA Boot Drive. A cause that my union local is very passionate about, every summer we do a voluntary toll where vehicles can donate to the MDA fund. It was a great day to be outside, both Ben and I agreed that traffic was a bit slow, which led to donations being a little down. However we were there early to help out, hopefully at the end of the day it was a successful event. Every little bit helps!

Before leaving Hampton, we tried to stop in to see my grandmother (she loves Ben) however we went into her room she was asleep, so we decided not to wake her up. And off to Newcastle Commons we went. We met up with his mom for a late lunch. What a great day out! With the sea breeze it was just a little too cool for me, but perfect for Ben. We had a great time just relaxing and talking and enjoying everyone's company. Then we said our goodbye's and headed into Portsmouth to go see "The Expendables" at the movie theater. It's defiantly a guy's movie. I got good girlfriend points for going.

Then finally headed home. Two long days, but both packed to the gills with fun! I was out enjoying my life and everyone in it.

Food wise I was trying to be smart and make good choices throughout the day. Although I didn't meet the good health guidelines, I still tracked. Which at the end of the day is what is important to me.

Today I used 36 points, taking 2 more points from my WAP allowance. I am pretty excited about how successful I've been tracking. Especially how much more conscious I've been with my eating and the types of food I've been eating.

Tracking Day 5

Sorry for falling behind in my posts. I promise, I've still been tracking, but I haven't been a good blogger and posting such here. This weekend was kick a$$, full of great weather, good friends and fun!

Saturday I got off from work and headed to Patch Wood Farm to get the animals ready for the Sandown Old Home Days Parade. This is the second year that the farm (and I) have participated. DBF brought out the "other woman" his 1970 Mustang to lead off the farm. Then it was the goats, horses, Sal the donkey and all of the dogs! We ended up being the tail end of the parade (on purpose? since we had the horse waste to deal with) but all the kids seemed to love seeing all the animals. We were the only animals in the parade. The parade was well attended this year, both in parade attendees as well as people in the parade itself.

After we finished putting away all the animals, we went and grabbed a bite to eat and then parted ways. DBF and I went home where I promptly took a nap! (I guess the night shift and the parade took it out of me!) After a few hours, I woke up and was able to get myself cleaned up and off to a friend's for a bonfire get together. It was great to see this group of friends as I haven't seen them in awhile. It was a late night for DBF and I but well worth it.

I love summer!

As far as tracking, I used 36 points. So I used 2 of my WAP points, but that's what they are there for!

I am feeling really good about tracking my food and getting my Gruve green. These are all positive changes. You can still enjoy your life and loose weight.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Weekly Weigh In

As I said last week, trying to work my weight watchers meeting/weigh-in can be difficult. I am really beginning to think that sleep (and lack there of) as something to do with your weight loss and/or retention of water weight. I was up last week, however, 2 days later, after I caught up on my sleep and had something that resembled normal life, I was back down to just a little above my Awesome by August weight.

This week, I lost! I do believe that tracking is helping tremendously with that!

Last week's weight: 296.6
This week's weight: 291.8
Loss: -4.8

Total Loss: -22

Thoughts: Well obviously, I am thrilled with a loss, I am sad with myself that I allowed myself to get back into the 290's but thrilled that I didn't get back into the 300's. My lowest recorded weight with Weight Watchers was 283 back on April 27th! I was so close to my 10% goal (282.8) I will achieve that goal by the end of September (nearly 5 months after I was last at that weight!).

This week's meeting topic was about being flexible in your life, mostly with your lifestyle changes. Every now and again you need to give yourself a break and remind yourself that you are human. And life is subject to change. Our leader in order to help remind us, gave us flexible straws, rigid at first and then flexible as needed to be. It reminded me that when we start out trying to loose weight that we are strict and rigid, even though the Weight Watchers plan allows you to eat whatever you'd like, you are still bound to say, oh I can't have that or that's on the no list. As you get familiar with the plan and comfortable, you can be flexible with what you are eating and can focus on if you want to have something you can, just in moderation.

What I am amazed with throughout this whole ordeal is that I am a) learning about myself and b) that I don't think I will ever stop learning when it comes to Weight Watchers. There are so many aspects about life and food and exercise, and trying to focus on it all can be difficult. It's nice to be able to focus on a part and then move on. However if you feel yourself slipping you can always go back for a refresher ;-)

Next week will be weird, as I've weighed in on Friday for this week, but will hopefully be back on my regular weigh in on Tuesday, so it will feel like a short week for me.

Tracking Challenge Day 4

Well day 4 and I am still going strong (over halfway!). Still tracking. I had a bad day, still tracked, but I wasn't making good food decisions. I do well when I'm not at work. I can identify that work is still a big weakness for me. I do strive to be better while I am at work, it's just going to take some hard work and dedication on my part. (Read: fried dough for dinner is NOT acceptable - but tasty)

I still managed 33.5 points total for the day, leaving me .5 points left over of my daily allowance.

What I am also impressed with is that I've managed to be consistent with my multi-vitamin and other medications, I've been very lax about taking them (obviously none of them are for chronic illnesses) but when I am tracking, I enjoy checking off those little boxes and seeing that smiley face, like I've done something good! (which I have) I am sure my doctor's will also be happy that I am more compliant with my medications.

All in all not a bad day. I weighed in today, but that will be in a separate post. Tracking works folks! I am so happy that I found Jen's post about her goal to track and that I piggy-backed on it and made it one of my goals this week!

I am obviously going to try and attempt to continue tracking my food beyond this weekly challenge, but probably won't be posting it like I am for this week.

Tracking Challenge: Day 3

So just to catch up, I will go ahead and post today's results (Wednesday). I woke up this morning in Boston and was able to make my way home, back to New Hampshire; before coming into work tonight. I love using Boston Transit. (MBTA) it's really wonderful and convenient. My friend's place that I crashed at is about a 10 minute walk to a T-stop. So it was nice to have a chance to chat with her. I rode with her to her work, and then got to see her office before saying my goodbyes and heading north. BTW, how she can work THERE is beyond me! I'd be so tempted!

I was able to get home at a reasonable hour, since all the traffic was heading into Boston, it was easy to get out of Boston. So happy when you go the opposite way of traffic! Once home, I grabbed a salad from a local pizzeria and checked my facebook feeds, grabbed a quick shower and headed into work. Of course once I got to work, I realized that I didn't pack anything for dinner, so after looking at the take out menus at work, I decided on some ziti and meatballs with another salad.

Salads are my go-to meal to get some veggies in. I don't ever get sick of salads. DBF on the other hand, doesn't like them as much as I do.

So how did I do today? Well I used 33.5 points, out of a possible daily of 34. I am happy about that!

I am going to try to go to my WW meeting tomorrow and weigh in. My typical weigh in day is Tuesday but with my work schedule, I haven't been able to go on my usual day. I am not sure what to think, whenever I weigh in around my night shifts, I tend to be up at the scale, a day or two later, I am back to normal or even losing. I've also had two nights in a row of late eating (due to schedules) so I am sure that doesn't do well when weighing in!

So I am not sure what my "official" weight will be tomorrow, but I know that I've been tracking and I'm pretty proud of that fact. And hopefully next week, I'll be back to my regular WW schedule!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Tracking Challenge: Day 2

So I did ok today. Out of the week, today (Wednesday) was the day I was most concerned about. I was heading down to Boston for the night, and I didn't know what my food options were going to be so late at night. I had a late meeting (it didn't get out till 10pm) so there wasn't much open in the way of food and I wasn't too keen on the idea of eating that late. However, by 10pm I was starving.

Again, a peeve of mine is trying to support local businesses but still trying to find nutritional information, this again happened today since I was trying to get information about my smoothie this morning. I guess-timated as best I could and again felt that I over-estimated just in case.

I did manage to find a place to eat in Boston at 10 pm at night, McDonald's, oh those golden arches.... Still trying to keep my soda free status in place, I opted for water. But man, the staff was really trying to push the soda on me, no wonder it's a no brainer for anyone else, but hey, I am trying to be conscious about this!

McDonald's put me way over my daily points and I had to dip into my WAP, but that is what they are there for as Roni reminded me on twitter this morning. I guess I've just always told myself that I shouldn't use them, but there are occasions that they are practical.

My total points for today was 54.5! So I used 20.5 of my WAP and I have 14 WAP remaining for the rest of the week.

One side note, my Gruve was glowing green that night for sure! I had a little time to kill before my meeting so I took my time and walked around some parts of Boston (I had enough time to walk, but not enough time to eat. I was also in a part of Boston where it was all sit down restaurants.)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Tracking Day One

So day one... well it went fairly well. DBF and I took a late evening walk (3 miles) and we didn't get back home till about 9:30. We were both starving for food and didn't feel like cooking anything, so we ordered pizza, but I didn't feel guilty, I had eaten well all day and I was tracking my food.

I always do well tracking for the first few days, and then I loose interest. I am hoping that Jen will call me out if I am slacking. I'd really like to get a full solid week in.

So how did I do? Great, I thought! I have 34 points a day to eat with. yesterday I ate 34.5 worth. (thankfully I have those weekly allowance points) I also did track my activity however I am going to try and refrain from using those in calculating how much I can eat.

One note of minor annoyance is whenever I go out to eat or do take out. I try to buy local. I try to support the local economy. However it's difficult to track points when they don't have their nutritional facts either on their website or in the business itself. I had to guesstimate and even then, I tend to go heavy, just in case.

This challenge stemmed from Jen and her weekly goal to track her food and try to hold herself more accountable for her food intake. Tracking my food for at least one week has been a monthly goal in both July and August for me. I am looking forward to crossing that one off!

I do feel more aware of what I am eating. I don't want to track it so I don't eat it. But I am eating my points.

Technology note... if anyone knows how to get a full screen shot of the WW tracker, I'd be more than happy to post it here. But the print screen option doesn't work since there is a scroll bar involved. Or even take a screen shot of my WW iPhone app.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Awesome By August

And just to recap, I participated in Kat Does Diet's Awesome By August Challenge at the beginning of July. Well since it is now August, the challenge is over.

How did I do? It started with 37 people and ended with 25 people; and I placed 10th! With a loss of 2.77%! I am pretty happy about that, but then to go to my not-so regular Weight Watchers meeting this past week and to see a gain has me wondering. I don't know if it was the change in my usual WW Weigh in day, or the difference in scales, clothing or what, but there was a marked difference between my home scale and the WW scale.

I am still proud of myself for participating, I do think that it served it's purpose to reignite that desire within me to be healthy and to fight my inner fat girl!

Congrats to the winner though! Julia is an awesome chica and she worked hard for her victory!

Do you know the weigh...

Sorry everyone. If you've followed me for any length of time, you know that I work shift work. My schedule is a 8 day week on an 8 week rotating schedule. So there are times when I am working when I have my Weight Watchers Meeting. My meeting is currently the Tuesday at 9:30am. I wasn't able to go last week, or this week. I should be back on track though for next week.

However, last week I wasn't able to weigh in till FRIDAY! It seemed foreign to me and screwed my week all up. I did enjoy the meeting although there wasn't much participation from the group, I kept talking and they all listened, but part of why I enjoy the meeting is to hear other people's successes/struggles.

Any who, here is the stats:

Last week's weight: 294.8
This week's weight: 296.6
Gain: +1.8

Total loss -17.2

Ugh, probably part of the reason for my delay in posting is that I was really upset to see a gain this week. I had a mini goal that I set to get my gruve to green at least 5 days this week. In fact it was the opposite. I only achieved green twice this week. My sedentary job sucks. Since I work for a tourist community, summer is our busiest time. The past 2 or 3 years have been very wet and cold for the better part of summer. This is the first summer of great beach weather. And it shows, everyone is coming to the beach! Which is great for the local businesses, who could use the boost in this slumping economy.

However, since the beaches are packed, my job gets busier, and when there are emergency calls going on, I have to sit at my desk and be attentive. There will be times I don't move for at least an hour. Ever since I've been more conscious of my health and lifestyle I've been moving more, this is the one aspect I've struggled in, the one season I struggle with. I've started pacing in my dispatch room to help at least get the blood flowing. But it's literally 5 steps one way, turn around 5 steps back. (Read: my room isn't very big)

Last week especially didn't help as I worked 2 extra shifts (20 hours) on top of my normal 48 hour. So it just made for a long week. Not that it's an excuse, but I like to track my weeks and see if there is anything I can do to help.

I am not sure when I will get a chance to weigh in this week, although the Friday meeting would work again this week. Who knows. However, I do know one thing, I will go to a Weight Watchers meeting this week... got to work on those August goals of mine.

Speaking of my goals, as I was reading through my google reader a post came up that inspired me, Jenny from Diary of a fat girl on her way to being a healthy girl, posted about her weekly goal to track her food. And since one of my goals this month was to track my food for at least one week, I thought, hey why not join her. My purpose is two-fold. Not one would I like to help Jenny reach her weekly goal, but also I could use the motivation (kick in the ass) to get my tracking done. I've become so lax with tracking and it's only hurting myself. I mean look at my numbers, obviously something is wrong. I need to be more conscious of everything I am eating/drinking.

This past weekend, DBF and I had a wedding to go to. I was slightly nervous about food, turns out it was family style service for dinner (one big bowl in the middle for all to share) and after everyone had their servings, the staff came around with seconds... DAMN, people, don't you know! Of course the bread basket was placed right in front of me. These were homemade biscuits people... delicious. I only had one, I had my piece of chicken (which had the skin cooked on it, so I removed it) and some potatoes and green beans. But only one serving of each!

I am still going strong in my Soda-Free Summer Challenge. I haven't drank soda since June 21st. Shrinking Amber asked me if I would continue to not drink soda, even after the Labor Day end date. While at said wedding this weekend, I had a bud light, and I didn't care for the carbonation. So I think that carbonated beverages will be a rarity for me from now on. I have my love for my water and my crystal light! The only place that I always drank soda was at restaurants. But now I enjoy having lemonade (and most places do carry it). I don't seem to be missing it. The only side effect I've noticed is that I have been more tired recently, and I've been drinking more coffee lately. But since I am not getting the caffeine from soda, I am sure that my body has just been craving it in another form.

My goal this week (in addition to my monthly goals) is to get my gruve green at least 5 days this week!

So on that note, it's time for me to refill my water bottle!

Have a great week folks!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Swagbucks is fighting the Back-To-School blues

Swagbucks is fighting the Back-To-School blues all this week with lots of fun promotions! First, you'll have the chance to win five different limited edition back-to-school themed Swag Bucks - if you snag them all, you'll earn a 50 Swag Buck bonus! Take advantage of sales in the Swag Store on all School Supplies and Cookie's Kids Merchandise, make sure you follow Swag Bucks on Twitter and Like them on Facebook for more rewarding opportunities. Plus, they're having another Swag Code Extravaganza on Thursday, where you'll get at least 5 codes for extra bucks. If you're not already searching and winning on Swagbucks.com, head over now and enter the code BackToSchool for 40 bonus bucks during registration!

Swag Code is for new users who sign up before 11:59pm PDT on Sunday, August 15.

I've been using SwagBucks as my search site for about 6 months now. You basically accrue "digital dollars" to redeem in their Swag Store. I've exchanged my "digital dollars" for amazon gift cards and paypal gift cards... that's right, CA$H.

Basically, all you do is use their site to do all your Internet searches and it uses the power of google to get your results. It's the same as using google, except you get "paid" to search the Internet, something we all do on a daily basis.

Check it out, and if you sign up, don't forget to use the swag code BackToSchool to get an additional 40 swagbucks during your new user registration. Hurry up! The code will expire on 8/15!

Swag Codes are case sensitive, so it's best to copy and paste, got to be careful, this has caught me a few times!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Weight Loss Tool Box

I've been thinking about all the tools I've been collecting and using through my weight loss journey. It's important to not only educate yourself about weight loss and the proper way to do it, but also necessary to incorporate tools to help you achieve your goals.

In my tool box:
  • Weight Watchers - I love the structure of the meetings, the public-ness of the weigh in's (even though they say they aren't; you are weighing in in front of other people). I feel its a great tool to start with; they promote a healthy weight loss and teach you proper nutrition. It's not for everyone, for some it's not forever, for now, it's working for me.
  • Water Bottles - This promotes my water intake. I am in the midst of my soda free summer challenge issued by Healthy Boston. To be honest, I am not really craving soda anymore, even when I go out to eat. I'm kind of cool with this. The water bottles help me have a constant reminder of what I am trying to accomplish. While I am at work, they encourage me to move around so I can fill my water bottles up. I also save money on not buying bottled water!
  • My One Bite; One Decision bracelet from A Prior Fat Girl, whenever I feel a binge eating session come on, I just look down at my wrist and remind myself of the journey I am on.
  • Gruve Activity Monitor - This has been something that I've only just begun to learn about. In fact I haven't even done a blog review post on it yet! (slacker I know!) However, I am liking this newest tool in my toolbox. Basically you wear it on your belt or waistband of your pants and it tracks the number of calories you burn. There are different colors to indicate how you are doing throughout the day, obviously, you want to go for green.
  • iPhone - I love my iPhone, one of my mini goal rewards. But it serves a purpose in my weight loss journey as well, it serves as my iPod which I need to have music to work out to. It also has a bunch of cool apps to help. Mainly my Couch to 5K training app. But not going to lie, I do like my I Am T-Pain app, I mean you never know when you'll have to autotune something, right?
  • Mini goals. You need something to shoot for. Some that is obtainable. If you look at the big picture, you are bound to get discouraged when you aren't seeing results as quickly as you'd like. I should know, over the past few months I've been slacking big time.
  • Challenges - everyone needs a good challenge. Competition helps drive us to be better, it's the human in us, to always be better than someone else. So friendly challenges are great and can be helpful. I've enjoyed the #AwesomeByAugust challenge and also the little ones between DBF and myself. It can be the thing you may need to shake things up. Even though I may not win the challenges, it does help re-energize my body and gets me in a great frame of mind.
You need variety in your routine so that it doesn't get boring and you loose interest. It's also helpful to shake things up so that your body doesn't get used to doing just one thing or just one way. Working different muscle groups can help tone your body.

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” Lao Tzu. Or in my case, a journey of a healthy lifestyle begins with a single calorie.

I am always on the lookout for different tools, I'd love to hear what ones you use.

What tools do you have in your tool box?

Monday, August 2, 2010

Looking Back...

My wonderful chorus teacher posted some "oldies but goodies" pictures from back in my high school days on facebook. This picture was probably my sophomore year of high school, we had taken a trip to Pennsylvania to do an exchange concert.

Looking back on this time, I realize that I thought I was heavy back then. It's true I was taller and heavier than all the other girls in school, but as an adult, I'd give anything to go back to that weight. That shirt that I am wearing is an x-large. I am currently still rocking a 2-3x shirt (depending on the style).

I am really happy that my teacher posted these pictures, it's great to have those memories. It's also great that back in the day, I wasn't really hiding from the camera and embracing my body. I wish I had that confidence now. I am better now than I was at my heaviest, but I don't enjoy having my pictures taken.

Other than that I don't think that I really have changed much, still have that big goofy smile, but happy. I cropped out my teacher (I didn't have his permission to publish his image) but in this picture I am giving him some bunny ears. Yeah, I was a bit of a teacher's pet. I LOVED chorus in high school, it was so much fun. 

When I get back to a healthy weight, stand back, I'll be a camera whore! Show me love!

August Goals

Summer is quickly coming to a close. I am looking forward to my annual Bar Harbor trip at the end of this month. Although who am I kidding, I am just looking forward to being on vacation at the end of the month! I hope for some great weather so I can get some beach time in as well as get some of my reading done. Typically no Internet is anywhere to be found, so it's a nice break, but new this year is my lovely iPhone, so I'll have a little access!

Last month I started setting goals for the month, knowing that I am a list maker; I am finding this helpful in achieving some goals yet also being mindful of my goals all month long. My goals are not just weight loss oriented but life oriented as there is so much I'd like to accomplish. I can't believe it's August already, it just feels like the summer is flying by and soon enough there will be 2 feet of snow on the ground.

And now, on with the goals:
  1. Write down my food, for at least one week. Challenge yourself to take it one step further and TRACK said food intake.
  2. Strive for 4 days of activity. (walk/c25k run/zumba/gym/whatever)
  3. Attend Weight Watcher meetings every week
  4. Start studying for HAM radio exam
  5. Clean the inside of my car
  6. Host a giveaway on my blog
I am still contemplating about changing my blog over to wordpress or even self-hosted. I think that it makes me more legit and holds me accountable. Especially if I am paying for it. Also I am celebrating my Google PageRank of 1! I am no longer an N/A but a 1. I don't know if that makes me more legit or not, I really didn't start blogging for recognition but more so to hold myself accountable for what I was doing and basically as an online journal about my life. It's just a nice little added bonus.

I think that these are well rounded goals and pretty much is a good snapshot of my life right now in the month of August. Just looking forward to the 29th when DBF and I leave for Bar Harbor.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

July Goal Update

In July, I started setting monthly goals as a way to make some small mini goals to help keep me focused; not just while on my weight loss journey, but also about my life in general.

Here are the goals I set for July and how I did:

July Goals:

  • Visit extended family at Bow Lake
  • Continue to work on 101 things in a 1001 days list (update on list in another blog post)
  • Start a new item on list
  • Work out at least 4 days a week (gym, zumba, run, hike, whatever - just move your ass!)
  • Go to Weight Watcher meetings all month; not just to weigh-in
  • Track food for one week this month
Well overall I thought I did well. I was able to see my extended family and also climb a mountain! I still can't believe that I did this, and still very proud of myself. It was great to see my family and to spend some time catching up with them. I really only get to see them once a year, so it's important to make time.

I was able to continue work on my 101 things in 1001 days list, I have several on going long term items, as well as updated the list with a blog post. I am glad to report that since my last update, I've completed 5 more tasks on my list.

My new item off the list was to travel by train, on Saturday, DBF and I went to North Conway and took the Scenic Dinner train for a ride. It was a nice way to spend an evening. I may still want to actually travel by train. However, it was still a lot of fun and something different.

I didn't get to work out 4 times every week. I at least got 3 times per week and 2 weeks out of 4 I got the full 4 times a week. I believe this will be another goal for August. It's a good goal to have. And something I want to strive for.

Attend Weight Watcher meetings, I accomplished this! I took the time and made it me time! Although there were times I was up weight wise, I felt like I was getting a lot out of the meetings. I have made a personal commitment to continue with Weight Watchers at least until the fall (October) I would like to hit the one year mark with them and then re-evaluate my situation.

Track food. Well, throughout the month I tracked my food a total of 4 days. My thought process was that since I was paying for weight watchers and that tracking is a big part of their strategy that if I am going to follow the plan, that I would have to follow all of the plan, well tracking is my biggest weakness. I am going to modify this item for next month to just write down what I eat, I will attempt to track points, but at least I'd like to write my food intake.

All in all, for the first time setting monthly goals, I am pretty happy with my success and I look forward to setting goals for August. Come back tomorrow to see my August goals.

Does setting mini or monthly goals work for you?


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