Feelin' Chalky

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

ISM - Kings Island Edition!

Let me just say...I had an absolute blast!  :)  I unfortunately wasn't able to get more video footage in the park b/c I couldn't figure out how to take my camera on the coaster without it crashing to its death.  And...with the girls being with us...someone had to stay behind and hang with them while my sister and I had the time of our lives (cue Patrick Swayze).  ;)  Thank you to my sweet hubby and my wonderful brother-in-law for helping out!

We rode 5 coasters on Sunday: The Vortex, The Diamondback (twice), The Firehawk (the one where you lay down), The Racer, and The Beast (twice).  There were a couple coasters closed due to the heavy winds and so we weren't able to ride them.  Also...we had some fun in Planet Snoopy with the girls on a couple of kiddie coasters. :)  Here is my sis and I getting ready to board our first coaster:

Honestly, I still was a tad panicked before we got on the Vortex that I wouldn't fit.  BUT...I plopped my be-hind in that seat and had no issues at all.  In fact, on a couple of the rides I wished my harness was tighter...kinda scary when you are able to get "air time" whilst upside-down hundreds of feet in the air.  Whew!  Here are a few other pictures from our fun day:

On one of the kiddie coasters - the girls loved it!

The girls loved the log ride the most - they thought it was funny that I got my pants all wet!

That last picture captures the whole day for me.  My husband and I had so much fun just hanging with our girls and getting to be like kids again.  I didn't feel weighed down by my insecurities or my body.  I was able to let go and feel a sense of freedom that I haven't felt in a long time.  I am so thankful we got the opportunity to go.  I was really tired by the time we headed for home, but 6 months ago, I would have never made it through 6+ hours of walking...heck my sis and I even ran up the stairs for extra exercise...haha.

On the other side of the coin...I was pretty terrified on the first coaster or two.  I had to get my ol' "coaster-legs" again.  Haha.  By the third one I was having a blast again, but that first corkscrew had me white-knuckling the safety harness and left me quite shaky.  It has been 7 years since I rode a coaster - that's a long time!  More than enough time to forget just how fast, how high, and how absolutely thrilling roller coasters are.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

You Snooze You "Lose"?

Today was the final weigh-in for WW's Lose For Good campaign.  I love the whole idea of this campaign - that others gain with each "loss."  Such an inspiring thing and such a great visual to see your total weight loss in the form of canned goods going to benefit someone who needs it.  If you have been reading my blog the last few weeks, you know that I have been trying to meet a personal goal of 80 pounds by the end of this 6 week campaign.  To be honest, I wasn't sure if I'd make it.  I had some big weeks, but mostly steady weight loss over the 6 week time frame.  So...the verdict??  I made it!!!!  :)  This week I lost 3 pounds bringing my total to 80.4!  Hooray!  Thank you all for encouraging me and to my family for the extra canned goods to help me reach the 80 pounds of food to donate.  Here is a picture of the 80 pounds (approximately).

And here is yours truly with my 80 pounds...

I was shocked at how heavy even 12 or 24 cans were to carry...I can't even wrap my mind around how heavy carrying all 73 cans would be...and I used to walk around every day with that around my waist, chest, legs.  Unbelievable.  I know I still have a ways to go, but I am so proud of where I am today. :)  Thank you to WW for making weight loss so much fun and for giving us something beyond ourselves to think about in this process!

Meanwhile...I promised I would talk about 2 things this week: sleep and poo.  Just stick with me for a second.  My friend, Jaime and I were talking about what we have learned along this journey so far.  Obviously, if you know my whole story, I have come a long way from chocolate cake to avocados (by the way...try some sliced up on top of your chili - heavenly!).  We all know that there are good foods and not-so-good foods.  We know that exercise is of utmost importance.  We know these things...but have you ever thought beyond that? Like...what other factors work along with "diet" and exercise to help you reach your goals?

Something I have noticed (and others have confirmed) is that sleep and poo are very important things in the world of weight loss.  Now mind you, these are my own personal thoughts and observations, but I am sure I could do some "google-ing" and find some science behind all of this.  So let's break it down.  Why is sleep important for weight loss?

First of all, sleep is healthy.  Sleep is our way to shut down and reboot before taking on the challenges of a new day.  Sleep also is the time when our bodies start to heal and detox, and of course, rest.  During most of the waking hours, our bodies are working on one main function - energy production.  We need energy to do everything from breathing to digesting food to running a 5k (go Jaim!).  At the end of the day our bodies go into a rest mode and use very little energy which frees up our cells to switch roles and clean-up and clean-out.  Our immune system kicks in.  Our digestion slows to a hault.  This is also (in my opinion) the time where our bodies whip out the checkbook and try to balance out the day - calorie-wise - either with a surplus or a deficit.  That equals either weight loss or gain.  I have noticed that the weeks where I am most sleep deprived I feel puffy, lethargic, and retain both water and poundage.  Why?  Because my body hasn't been able to catch up on it's nightly duties.  It's in overdrive - overworked and underpaid.  The good news is that it can be remedied with some good ol' snooze time.  Just think about it this week.  Are you getting enough zzzz's?

And now for the more humorous, but also very serious side of the coin - poo.  OK, so what is it and why does it have anything to do with weight loss?  Well...it's waste.  It's toxins.  It's excess "stuff" that our bodies can't use and need to get rid of.  What happens when we don't get rid of it?  Answer: it rots and ferments in our intestines.  Yummy!  I hope you're eating lunch right now!  Ha!  All joking aside though, this is a serious matter.  That rotten stuff can make your body go haywire and it also is a breeding place for all kinds of bacteria and disease.  Not good.  Think about this too...how much do you think a day's worth of food weighs?  What if you only go potty (sorry, that's the mama speaking) once or twice a week?  I think it really shows up on the scale!

So what?  What can you do?  Well, for starters, eat less processed food.  Eat less refined carbs (say white bread, white flour, white sugar, white rice, white pasta).  Eat whole grains.  No...I don't mean you can just go buy a loaf of "whole wheat" bread and polish it off.  I am talking about whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, oats, groats, barley, millet, amaranth, bulgar, etc.  Add in some healthy protein and fiber with beans and lentils, nuts and seeds...and then eat lots of whole fruits and veggies.  What I mean is don't just settle for a glass of apple juice or some V-8.  You need to chew! ;)  Also, don't think that just because a food is labeled high in fiber that it's good for you...it may also be high in a lot of other things like sugar and chemicals.  Limit dairy and meats.  No...I didn't say you have to eliminate them completely.  Just know that both dairy and meat can clog your plumbing.  Why?  Because our bodies have to take more energy to break them down - they are more foreign than an apple.  You eat an apple and your body says, "It's an apple. I know what to do with this!"  You eat a hunk of cheese and your body says, "hmmm what shall we do with this?"  Then it waits until there's enough other stuff behind it to push it on out!  Try abstaining from dairy or meat for one week and see how it affects your body.  Do your OWN experiment and see what happens!  Who knows, it might make a big change on the scale!  What do you have to lose?

P.S. - Corn sugar = High Fructose Corn Syrup...don't be fooled! 

Stay tuned for my Kings Island edition vlog! :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Gearing Up!

I am gearing up for a very special ISM on-the-road vlog edition - from KINGS ISLAND! :)  It shall be a blast!  I will be taping my first coaster experience in almost 10 years - next Sunday!  Stay tuned for that post from yours truly!

I tried two new products this week - both of them I give two thumbs up!  the first one was Yves - Veggie Corn Dogs.  I know, it sounds nasty, BUT they were great!  The kids loved them...I mean what kid (or adult) doesn't like to eat off of a stick?!?  They are also only 140 calories which I felt was totally reasonable for a "corn dog."  It was nice to venture into Carnie-ville without feeling like blowing chunks on the ferris wheel afterwards! ;)  P.S. - I found them at Kroger on Dixon - my new go-to store...thankfully we may be moving VERY close to it...I could ALMOST walk to get my groceries! *fingers crossed*

The second product I tried this week was Morningstar Farms' Sesame Chik'n.  MSF has a line of faux-chicken meals out that I have been dying to try.  They were on sale the other day at Kroger on Dixon, so I did a happy dance and popped one in the micro for lunch on Saturday!  I was pleasantly surprised...it was fantastic!  As with most frozen meals, it could have had more veggies and less noodles, but other than that, it was a winner in my book.  I think they have several different varieties out - Sesame Chik'n, Sweet and Sour Chik'n, Chik'n Enchilada, and Lasagna w/ sausage-style crumbles.  You can check them and their stats out here!

This week I lost another 1.2 pounds bringing my total to 77.6! Only 2.4 to get to my 80 pound goal! Speaking of goals...my goal was to be able to donate 80 pounds of food to the Lose For Good campaign which ends this weekend!  I grossly underestimated what 80 pounds of food would look like - and cost!  If any of you have extra cans/boxes/bags of food you would like to donate toward my 80 pounds - please let me know and I will come pick it up!  It will benefit CAM here in Kokomo.  Right now I have about 25-30 pounds of food bagged and ready to go...amazing how heavy 20 pounds of food is...and that's only 1/4 of what I have lost...blows my mind!  Thank you GOD for this opportunity to get healthy and start over...and teach my kids to honor YOU by taking care of their bodies.

Until next time...

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Chatty Cathy

First off...I would like to apologize to anyone who was at the 9:00 WW meeting this morning.  I know my friend and I were awfully chatty today.  It won't happen again...at least for a few weeks. ;) There is just something so freeing about Saturday mornings for us - oh, I don't know, maybe the freedom of no kids, no responsibility, and something that we call our own?  Our Saturday morning meeting has become our ritual and it's a place to vent and a place to encourage and build each other up.  My girl lost today and I was so over-the-top happy for her that I couldn't contain myself!  Again, I apologize.  Here's me today:

Chatty Cathy Video

Something really hit me today - something wonderful - as I was standing in line to weigh-in. I saw someone light up with joy.  I saw someone feel alive again.  I saw someone with hope.  After she weighed-in she turned around and said, "Hallelujah!"  :)  It made me think about all of the times I felt stuck in the over-sized, over-worked body I was in.  It made me remember how it felt to be hopeless.  For a second I could put myself back in that place and feel that gut-wrenching emptiness, loneliness, and defeat.  I am so thankful that God reached His hand down into the pit I was in and so thankful that He reminded me that I, through Christ, could overcome the seemingly daunting task of losing weight and getting healthy.  It is truly something worth screaming, "Hallelujah," for!

I used to think that there was something wrong with me because I just couldn't love myself in the state I was in.  I'd see people who seemed to ooze with confidence who were "bigger" than me.  Now I really believe that the confidence I saw was a facade.  I really believe that we all long to be at our best - a place where there is nothing holding us back.  Whether we want to face it or not, weight is a barrier, for a lot of things.  There are stigmas associated with being overweight - and prejudices.  It's just the way life is.  I look forward to unlocking more and more of who I was made to be each week.  I think God smiles each time I lose a pound - not because of the number but because with each pound I lose I gain back 1 more piece of myself.

This week I lost 1 pound!  Yay!  That brings my total to 76.2 - 3.8 away from my 80 pound goal. The "Lose For Good" campaign ends 10/23 at 11:30 pm...I think I can pull off 3.8 pounds by then!  :)

Confession: I had a little run-in with ice cream and mini chocolate chips this week.  I was having an angry/stressed-out moment, and my weapon of choice was a spoon.  Thankfully, I counted my points and started over the next day.  What kind of battles have YOU had this week?

By the way, this recipe is amazing!  It's from Little House of Veggies...please check it out!

Apple Harvest Salad and Dressing

Have a great week!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Smoothie Madness!

I have been experimenting with smoothie/drink recipes since I finally found a protein powder I like!  Here it is in all it's glory!
Met-Rx - Protein Plus Vanilla, 2 lb powder
We actually bought ours at Trader Joe's, but I'm sure you can find it around here as well.  I usually only use 1/2 to 1 scoop for my smoothies which is only 1-2 points.  Here are a few smoothie/drink recipes I am loving right now:

Almost Worth 5-Bucks Caramel Macchiato

1 cup strong, black coffee (preferably fair-trade and organic)
1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze
2T Caramel Syrup (I used Smuckers Sundae Syrup b/c that's all I had - not the best option)
1/2 scoop Met-Rx Protein Plus Vanilla
handful of ice

Blend it up and pretend you just paid an arm an a leg for it...and then smile because you didn't!  ;) (4 points)

White Chocolate Chai Spice Smoothie

1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze
1 T Peanut Butter & Co - White Chocolate Wonderful (Kroger or Sunspot)
1 cup Black Chai Tea (I like Tazo in the carton - Sunspot)
1/2 scoop Met-Rx Protein Plus Vanilla

Blend and enjoy! (7 points)

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

1/2 - 3/4 cup canned pure pumpkin
1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze
1 scoop Met-Rx Protein Plus Vanilla
2 T pure maple syrup
pumpkin pie spice to taste (I use a lot)

Blend it and eat with a spoon.  The full scoop of protein powder makes this thick and delicious!  Tastes like pumpkin pie filling!  YUM! (5 points)

Chocolate-Banana Smoothie

1 banana
1 cup Silk Light Chocolate Soy Milk
1/2 scoop Met-Rx Protein Plus Vanilla
1 T Peanut Butter & Co - Dark Chocolate Dreams

Blend and enjoy!  (8 points)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Those Are Some Big Pants to Fill!

Yours truly with a special edition vlog update!

P.S. I apologize in advance for anyone who is offended by my saggy tummy or my misshapen John Lennon tattoo - I got it when I was 16.  I have had 4 kids and lost 75 pounds.  It's just part of the deal...and you know what?  I am pretty proud of my battle scars.  They tell a story and remind me where I have come from.

The Incredible Shrinking Mama