Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Wheat Belly Wednesday - Edition 3


Oy! Work is a zoo this week, so Wheat Belly Wednesday will be short, sweet and to the point!

Week 2 has gone well. I'm still getting some headaches, specifically in the evenings and I seem to be fighting off a could the past couple of days (will it ever end?), but over all things are going well! I am plugging right along and cold aside, feeling great.

This week's weigh in:






Starting Weight: 193.8
Week 1: 188.6
Week 2: 186.4
Week 2 Loss: -2.2
Total Loss: -7.4

After a big loss last week, I wasn't expecting to lose 2 pounds this week, so I'm happy has punch with that number. Things are moving in the right direction! Hopefully the headaches will subside soon. Overall, I'm loving the way I feel these past couple weeks and am sure it will just continue getting better.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Motivation Monday - Body Image

My issues with body image started at a very young age. I can actually remember the exact time it all began: I was probably in 1st grade or so. I remember getting out of the bath one evening, looking down and noticing I had a "belly". I can remember thinking to myself, "when did this get here? Why do I have it?". I've been self conscious about my appearance ever since.






From that day forward, I became very aware that I was bigger than my friends. At that age, I was too young to understand why I was the way I was. I didn't know that my eating habits were unhealthy, and no one ever told me so. I didn't know how to change it, but I was uncomfortable in my own skin. As time went on, I started to hide behind a shell. I became incredibly shy and while no one ever said anything or bullied me, I always felt that people noticed I was different too. As far as I know, none of my friends or peers ever laughed or made fun of me, but I always felt as though they were staring and laughing.



I have always been active. From dance, tap, clogging, ballet when I was young, to various sports as I got older. In all honesty, I was a good dancer. Captain of my team even. But I eventually quit something (dance) I loved because of my size. My friends and teammates all looked great in their costumes, and I always felt so self conscious and uncomfortable. 

My first diet was in 4th grade. I'd try so hard to eat the right things, but I didn't have much support. There was always cookies, ice cream and chocolate in the house. While my mom made healthy dinners, 2nd, 3rd and even 4th helpings were always readily available.

I hated PE in elementary school. Not because I didn't want to run around or that I didn't enjoy the actual activities. I hated the pressure in not coming in last. I hated that I struggled to do a pull up when my smaller friends did it with ease. I hated that my face would become beat red after 2 minutes of "Steal the Bacon". 

Then came middle school. Man, middle school is rough - for anyone. You start to notice boys, and you want boys to notice you. While all my girl friends were getting 'boyfriends', I was just one of the guys to the boys in my class. At this point, I took my food issues from one extreme to another. I'd skip breakfast, lying to my mom telling her I had some while she was in the shower. For lunch, I'd sit in the commons area with my friends, but never go through the line to get my own tray. Dinner would come, and I'd pick at my food telling my parents I was full from lunch. Lying to everyone, including myself. 

Fortunately, I had people that loved me. I never got incredibly small, but people noticed the rapid weightloss and didn't stay quiet. I was always a people pleaser, and went back to eating - but eating too much- and put it all back on plus some. 

I hid my insecurities, body and unhappiness under baggy jeans, t-shirts and hoodies.
My prom dress had to be custom made. I couldn't find one that fit properly, and would cover my arms like I wanted.

Senior Prom
I was, in all honesty, very upset each time I was asked to homecoming dances and Jr and Sr prom. I didn't want to go, because I didn't want to feel "ugly" in comparison to my petite friends. Looking back, I know how silly that all was. I was never bad looking. There's a lot of muscle under the extra weight - it's just the way I'm built. I carry it well, I guess you could say. But to me, it was embarrassing.

After high school, once I was in complete control of the food in my house, I started to lose weight and for the first time in my life, gain some confidence.





But my pregnancy brought on a whole new host of insecurities. Ones that I'm still working on today. I had this beautiful, new baby boy at home. My heart was so full of love. But I remember, very vividly, sobbing when I looked in the mirror at my new body. Ah hormones.

So with all that being said, re-gaining the pounds I lost in the past year has been really difficult on me mentally these past couple of months. Back are the hoodies and baggy t-shirts. Back are the negative thoughts and self talk. It's a hard thing to overcome - a life time and bad body image.

I've put off my first run since getting healthy because of all of this. I was worried about how I'd look out there. Every time I've had a run planned in the past couple of weeks, I'd find an excuse not to do it. I've struggled to get past the mentality of, "I did this to myself. I don't look like I did 4 months ago." Then, this weekend, I realized something. I have never in my life seen a heavier person out walking or running and thought anything negative of them. And more than that, no one should ever be ashamed of their appearance. No one - including myself. Whether you're 105 pounds or 300+, who cares. It's what's on the inside that makes a person beautiful. Who cares if I have rolls showing through my shirt while I'm out there running? Who cares if I have to take some walking breaks? None of that matters. 

So Saturday afternoon, I laced up my shoes, blared some music, held my head high and I ran. It was slow. It was difficult, but I did it. I took that first baby step into accepting myself. Accepting my short comings and past failures. And accepting that none of that is going to change unless I do something about it.



All of you out there, anyone reading this, YOU are beautiful. YOU are strong. YOU are the only one holding yourself back from achieving whatever goals or plans you might have. Hold your head high, and get to work!













Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Wheat Belly Wednesday - Edition 2


Week one down and successful!

It definitely hasn't been an easy week. Giving up grains/wheat has been difficult, but I knew it would be. Days 3-5 were by far the most difficult up to this point. All things carbs were calling my name, but I managed to pull through. It really is such an empowering feeling to be stronger than your mind. The only negative effect I've had in the past week is some pretty bad headaches. I'm assuming it's from detoxing myself of all the chemicals and processed junk. Although, I am a chronic migraine sufferer, so it could just be coincidence.

On the positive side of things, I am feeling absolutely amazing the past 2 days. Like, on top of the world amazing. I have not had this much energy or felt this 'normal' in at least 6 months. In all honesty, sick, lethargic and miserable had become my new normal. I had completely forgotten what it was like to feel truly healthy. Knock on wood that it continues... I always seem to jinx myself when I mention that I'm feeling better.

I have been trying to stay creative in the things I'm eating. I don't want to dislike or get bored with food. That will just lead to binge eating all things I know I shouldn't have. This weekend I made some zucchini boats and loved them!

They are stuffed with ground venison (in this case, deer. VERY lean), tomatoes and I added some green chili's for flavor. Topped with a bit of shredded parmeson. mmmmm. It really did hit the spot.

As for this morning's weigh-in:





Starting weight: 193.8
Week One: 188.6
Total Loss: -5.2 pounds

I'm pretty happy with that number. Currently, I'm working out about every other day due to my toe and just easing back into things in general. I made the right move in going back to JM Body Revolution. I've upped my weights this time around and am really focusing on form. My body reacts best to circuit training. I burn the same amount of calories in 30 minutes of circuit training (lifting moves, combined with short cardio bursts) as I do with 30 minutes of straight cardio as with T25 etc... And the big thing is, I enjoy it more.

We finally have a spring day today. Our first day expected to make it in the 60s. Then, snow forecasted for Sunday. So, of course, I have to take advantage of it and try and get a run in for Dakota tonight. My first run in far too long. I know it won't be pretty, but I cannot wait to hit the pavement!

Things are lookin' up, and I'm lovin' it!


The Hump Day Blog Hop

Monday, April 7, 2014

10 Things I've Learned About Weightloss and Fitness

I've been on this weightloss/blogging journey of mine for nearly a year now. In that time, I lost (and regained) nearly 30 pounds. I had several injuries, illnesses and a long plateau. Yet, there were a lot of highs in there as well. Overall, there have been many things I've learned on this journey of mine... and many more lessons still to come.

1.  Rest days are important. Take them. Enjoy them. Otherwise, you could end up in this situation:
Stress fractures from over training hurt - just don't do it
In that same category, don't drop a 200 lb HVAC unit on your big toe. It's not pleasant, and I don't recommend it.

2.  Water is your best friend. Drink it until you feel you can't possibly drink any more. Sure, the constant bathroom trips are a pain, but your body will thank you. Not only does it help with weightloss, but I feel so much lighter and clear headed when I'm well hydrated.

3.  Losing weight is a whole different ball game once you're a mother. Fitting in a workout takes some major planning and strategizing. Starting out it seemed like an impossible task to me. I'm too tired to workout once he's in bed, but there was no way I could workout with him all over me, right? That was my excuse for 2 whole years. One day, I decided to just give it a shot. To attempt a workout with my crazy, energetic toddler under foot.




As it turns out, he loved it. It ended up being a win-win. I get my workout in, and I'm setting a good example for my son at an early age.

4.  Don't be scared to move out of your comfort zone. Try new things (like working out with your kids). Enter a race, even though it terrifies you. Try out the weight section at the gym. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. You never know where it might take you.

My first 5K Race - 2013

5.  Weightloss is about so much more than just the scale. It will try you mentally and emotionally. You'll face demons and learn to get past them. That's important.

6.  Sometimes you'll fail. It may be a small slip up, or it may be huge (like regaining all your weight). But you don't give up, not ever.

7.  Your body is capable of so much more than you'd ever imagine. Test it to to it's full potential.

8.  All the pizza, cookies, burgers, sticky finger quesadillas? Yeah, they taste delicious. But, you won't care about that when it's weigh in time. You won't care about that a couple hours later when you feel sluggish. It's not worth it. 

9.  I've learned that I don't eat based on stress or just any bad day. My food issues tie directly to my physical health. I don't struggle with my eating habits until I'm in physical pain with my Lupus or down for the count with an illness. I eat to comfort myself in those situations. I'm still working to overcome that issue.

10.  The scale doesn't define my self worth. 

This year has brought a whirlwind of ups and downs. I'm grateful for every single moment - good and bad. It hasn't been a perfect journey thus far, but that's just me. I can't wait to see where my journey leads in the next year and what experiences it will bring me.   




Friday, April 4, 2014

Potty Training 101

Wyatt has been potty trained for 2 weeks now, and I'm finally getting around to writing about it. Life.

In all honesty, one of my biggest fears from the second I knew I was expecting, was potty training. No joke. My baby didn't even have all his fingers and toes and I was petrified thinking of the day I'd have to potty train him or her. Now that this part is out of the way, I can go on to being scared to death of the teenage years, which is a far more logical fear...

Back in September, Wyatt was showing all the normal physical signs that he was ready to potty train. I did research online. Found that apparently the "3 Day Method" is all the big to do these days. People are potty training kids before they can walk, for crying out loud. Wyatt was 2 and half - he's ready! let's get this party started! It was more that mom is ready, Wyatt was not. And he let me know it that weekend. It was a complete disaster and we gave up before noon the first day. 

After that, Wyatt became terrified of the toilet so I took a huge step back. I didn't even mention potty training or underwear to him until after the holidays. After the new year, I got him in the habit of sitting on the potty before his bath every night. Just to get used to the idea. No more rushing him. I'd let him decide when he was ready. In all honesty, I didn't think it would happen before he turned 3. 

About a month ago, Wyatt started insisting on trying to change his own diaper. That's when I put my foot down. If you can clean up your own crap, you can sit on a dadburn toilet! So I started rethinking how we were going to go about it this time. 6 months makes a big difference  in the life of a 2 year old. He's a very different little person now than he was then, and I'm a very different mommy.

I had a vague idea of the type of chart I wanted, but couldn't quite put together how to do it exactly. With Wyatt's personality, I felt it was important for him to visual see that while he isn't in trouble for accidents, they aren't a good thing. The point is to keep the underwear dry. So, I came across this amazing chart from Approaching 30! You can find her tutorial HERE. It seemed perfect! I haven't talked about it much, because time is hard to come by, but I've been sewing clothes, quilts etc... since I was 7/8 years old. I participated in 4H Sewing for several years. I love it. It's one of the few things that come naturally to me and I've missed it. This chart was the perfect opportunity to get to sew a bit.


This picture doesn't show the clothes pins, but here's how this little chart works:

Starting on the zero, there is a clothes pin with a picture of a toilet on it. For each successful trip to the bathroom, he got to move the pin up a block. For each accident, it would move back down one. When he reached 10, he knew that he'd get to pick a toy at the store.

It was seriously the easiest thing to make...

Batting (not necessary) fabric, thread, clothes pin, pictures of your choosing

 Cut 11 even blocks to whatever size you prefer.

To cut the numbers, I printed out 0-9 in Word and used those as a stencil to trace onto the fabric.
First, sew the numbers onto the squares, then sew the squares together. Add the batting (if you choose) along with the back. I used a small piece of ribbon at the top for hanging.





I included Wyatt in every step of the process so he would feel more involved and excited about his chart. As a result, please excuse the sloppy stitching in pictures. The nice thing about this chart, is it can be used for other things in the future. I also made a "pick up toys" pin and "follow directions" pin etc... He won't get a toy every time he reaches 10 with those, but maybe things like frozen yogurt trips, pool trips etc...




He must have really wanted a new TMNT because he made it to 10 the first day. The chart made a huge difference. He was so determined to keep that pin moving on up. I was so impressed! Although, it was quite the day. He did have several accidents, and used the potty about every 20 minutes.

He may or may not have dunked his entire head in the toilet, before running into the kitchen panting, telling me he was a puppy. Oy!






Only 2 accidents on day 2 and he hasn't had one since! We went out for ice cream that day and to pick out his prize to celebrate. Big plus, no head dunks this day.


We also started Day 1 by reading this book and watching the movie:




I  kept reminding Wyatt the whole week leading up to Operation Potty Training that we were going to get rid of diapers and wear big boy underwear over the weekend. He was not happy about it. There was some crying once I pulled the underwear out, but after reading The Potty Book, he relaxed and we were smooth sailing!




Thursday, April 3, 2014

Skip the Bun, Please - NSV

Let's talk non-scale victories, since I clearly don't have any scale related victories to celebrate, yet.

My little brother is a freshman at the University of Wyoming here in Laramie. He comes over every other week or so to do laundry at our place. I always make a point to make him dinner and give him a break from cafeteria food. Last night, he requested cheeseburgers.
Day 1 wheat free, and I was going to make cheeseburgers and fries. Yikes! I love me a good cheeseburger. A nice, big bun, tons of mayo, ketchup and pickles. Mmmm. The thought is enough to make my mouth water. For the first time, well... probably ever, I didn't give in or justify a cheat. I had the hamburger (lean) patty with a nice big helping of veggies and didn't feel deprived at all. 

Breakfast this morning is a boiled egg and some fruit. It's hard to skip the toast, but I know that will get easier in time. I have a big salad planned for lunch. Veggies and cheese for a snack. Dinner will be something with chicken. Fail to plan - plan to fail, right?


What non-scale victories have you had recently?




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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Wheat Belly Wednesday - Edition 1

Disclaimer: Minor panic attack hitting "publish" this morning. Yet, it's refreshing and I'm feeling good!
We're just going to start fresh with this Wheat Belly Wednesday business around here. Illnesses and injuries are, knock on wood, behind us. I'm starting this journey of mine over, at least physically. This is a new beginning, so it seemed fitting to take it back to numero uno.

God willing, every Wednesday around these parts will be "Wheat Belly Wednesday." Since this is the first week, here's my plan:

  • Every Wednesday I will be weighing in and sharing that number here on the blog.. eeeekkk. This is not an easy thing for me to do, but it's a huge motivator for me. 
  • I'll share progress pictures every 10 pounds
  • Update on my week in regards to nutrition. ie: what I'm eating, how I'm feeling etc... As well as how it's effecting my autoimmune disorders. Which, is the main reason I am choosing to try this lifestyle
  • I'll share anything that stands out to me in the book, videos, other blogs etc... knowledge is key and I want to get my hands on all of it.
A question I'm getting a lot through the blog, as well as friends and family that I've mentioned Wheat Belly to, is "Why on earth would you want to do that?" This is not some fad diet to me nor am I looking for some quick "fix". That needs to be clear.  With my Lupus being considered "active" at the moment, one of the few treatment plans is prednisone. I'm sure from all my complaining these past few months, you have probably all caught on that I hate the stuff. A lifetime of prednisone and other nasty drugs is a last resort in my book. I want a life I can live to the fullest and feel my best doing it.

So, I started doing some research. There are some studies showing the possibility of a wheat free diet being beneficial in autoimmune patients. It sounds weird to some and most don't understand my decision. That's okay. I don't expect people to understand and I completely get how they are skeptical. It may help; it may not. Only time will tell. All I know is it's worth a shot.

I need to give myself "mini challenges" to kick things off, so I've decided to commit to 21 days wheat free. Statistically, it's supposed to take the body and mind 21 days to adjust to new things. It's a do-able time frame. I can do anything for 21 days, right? No cheats. None, what-so-ever for the first 21 days. Once I've reached that point, I will re-evaluate and go from there. I don't know if I will go 80/20, more or less. It will all depend on how I feel. But, I want to kick start and flush it all out of my system, so 100% for now.

I love all things carbs. This could be more challenging than my week-long labor and birth with Wyatt. But, i feel I'm truly ready to push through mentally this time. These past few months have taught me a lot about what I don't want to feel like on a daily basis. Maybe, it's been a blessing in disguise.

Enough of the long winded rambling. On to the weigh-in and measurements:

Don't mind the unpainted toe. I need to take care of that now that it's healed!
 In all it's scary glory. Honestly, I'm not surprised by that number. It's actually better than I thought it would be, sad to say.

Measurements:

Tummy (right below belly button): 42.5
Hip: 42
Waist: 40
Chest: 39
Bust: 44
L Upper Thigh: 24
Left quad (directly above knee: 17.25
L Calf: 15.25
R Upper Thigh: 25
R Quad: 18.5
R Calf: 16
L Upper Arm: 13
R Upper Arm: 13

Originally, I was going to address the exact number of gains (and eventually, I'm sure I'll have a post about it). If you want to know, I'm sure you can look back in the archives, ha. But, I'm choosing not to focus on the what could have beens and what ifs. All I care about is the here and now. For my own sanity and happiness, I'm viewing this as a fresh start and new beginning rather than failures. I've wallowed long enough, it's time to get to work!

Also, linking up with Liz for the blog hop today. If you haven't checked out her blog, you really should. She is incredibly inspiring and sweet as can be!
The Hump Day Blog Hop
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