Saturday, May 30, 2015

End of Week

Today started a new week and the end of what has been the hardest week for me since I started.  This past week I have been stressed, emotional, sleep deprived, and low on energy.  Today starts week 5 and ends week 4.  A week like that usually throws me off.  I haven't been able to make it past week 3 in almost a year, since I completed Turbo Fire last August.  I feel like all the odds were against me this week and I was just struggling to stay afloat.  For the past several months I would let this start a downward spiral of poor food choices and binge eating, probably gaining about 5 pounds in one week and then taking forever to get back on track, if I did.  This week, I barely managed to stay afloat weighing in at 150.8. That is a .2 pound loss.  At first I was so depressed and upset, but then I reminded myself how hard last week was and how little energy I had and the non scale victories I had such as running a full 5K (jogging at 6mph for a whole 30 minutes without stopping) and going on that bike ride with my husband and father in law.  Not only did I not gain weight this last week, I managed to go a few tick marks in the right direction.  So was last week a failure?  Not at all!  It wasn't what I wanted to see on the scale.  I want to be back in the 140s so badly and now I will just have to wait longer.  But I will get there eventually, I just have to keep holding on and doing my best.

Lily's fever finally broke Friday morning and I was feeling good, and excited and feeling like the worst was behind me.  But it seems that life wasn't done throwing curve balls at me because at the gym after I finished my 30 minute run I was waiting for a pool lane to open up.  I only had an easy 800 yard swim to do, which would take me about 20 minutes, and I was sitting on one of the benches.  When a lane opened up I got up and jumped in the pool and started swimming.  During my 200 yard warm up I noticed that my back was hurting, and the pain kept building until I had to quit early.  I ended up not doing the last 200 yards because my back hurt so much.  At least this time it was in a different spot.  It was my mid left hand side and it hurt like crazy to pull my arm through the water.  The thing that vexes me so much is I have no idea what I did to injure my back!  I was just sitting!  But my back hurt like crazy for the rest of the day, and my energy completely disappeared.  I put a movie on for the kids when we got home and fell asleep on the couch, then I passed out in bed around 8:15.  I had to sleep on my back all night because sleeping on my side or stomach pulled my back in a way that made it hurt.  I woke up this morning at 6:15 cranky and still utterly exhausted. 

Today was supposed to be a fantastic day, we were going to go hiking, then I was going to do Zumba so I could get in lots of exercise to eat popcorn at the theater tonight, but I just hurt too much.  We did get in a hike, and the kids loved it, especially Lily, (that is until she slipped on a rock and scraped her leg.  She is like me, Zero pain tolerance). 
Isn't she sooooo adorable?  I just love her to pieces.  I'm glad she is feeling better.  The hike took everything out of me though.  When we got home I felt like jelly.  The kids both fell asleep in the car on the way home so we all just took naps (except for Matt).  I don't know why I've been so tired, but my theory is that I just hit a brick wall.  I've been working very hard physically for three weeks on this triathlon training plus I've been doing a lot of Zumba along with it, also I was just so stressed with the kids being sick, and then I had a lot of interrupted sleep nights due to sick kids, and it's entirely possible that I am fighting off their sick germs which is making me tired.  Probably all that combined into one.  But seriously, unless you are throwing up, or have a fever I feel like people just kind of roll their eyes and think "oh yeah?  you're feeling sick huh?  where are your symptoms? Oh your tired?  Wuss."  Do you ever feel that way?  Anyway, we did have a great time at the movie.  After my nap I started feeling a little better, more awake, and the move was awesome!  We saw Mad Max Fury Road.  I shared some popcorn with my sister and I was totally planning on refilling that thing and eating two buckets of popcorn like we usually do, except this time I was done after one bucket.  I didn't want any more, so I didn't eat anymore.  That is unusual, but I'm not complaining. 

I took a break today with my food, and while my eating was less than stellar, it also wasn't as terrible as it could have been.  I am planning on being spot on for the rest of the week with my eating and I am just hoping and praying and pleading that my back will feel better by Monday because I need to start week 5 of training which takes things up a notch as far as distance and duration goes in my biking and swimming and running.  My running jumps up to 40 minutes along with my biking and my swimming is going to jump up to about 1500 yards.  As of right now I pretty much can't do anything with where my back hurts.  At least the last time I threw out my back I knew exactly when and how it happened (if not the why- all I did was pick up Lily last time and boom!  my lower back decides to freak out and I'm incapacitated for a month).  Anyway, the road to a more active lifestyle seems to be a treacherous path to walk.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Holding On

Thank you to everyone who posted a comment on my last post!  It was great to hear from you and made me feel happy inside.  A bright spot in a couple of rather difficult days.  

The past two days have been difficult again.  Lily is still sick and that has been wearing on my nerves, and we have been cooped up for over a week with tired and sick kids.  I took Lily to the doctor on Tuesday and she was put on some antibiotics but they don't know specifically what it is.  The test for strep came back negative.  Today Lily's fever is down to around 99.8.  She is doing better, but she still isn't quite there.

Yesterday was particularly difficult.  I was just so stressed by the afternoon and I was trying my hardest not to eat anything.  I really wanted to keep my calories lower for Wed, Thurs, and Friday because I know I've eaten more than usual earlier in the week.  Yesterday I managed to eat around 1600 calories, which was still 200 over what my goal was, but for how difficult it was I'm not going to complain.  The afternoon just seemed to drag on and on and all I wanted to do was eat.  I felt like I was starving even though I had eaten well.  We didn't go anywhere Wednesday so I did Zumba on the Wii.  I was able to make it through just fine but around 3:00 I just crashed.  I was so tired and felt so hungry.  I snacked on some carrot sticks after I had eaten my official snack.  To help get me through I texted a few of my friends and that helped take my mind off of things for a while.  I ended up eating dinner at 4:45 and then put Sleeping Beauty on for the kids and fell asleep on the couch.  I've been so exhausted lately, having sick kids has really been wearing me down.

Today was better, but I was just moody today.  Lily was feeling better so I made it to the gym and I was going to swim and bike to finish off my training for the week but as I was walking towards the pool, every step seemed to get heavier and heavier.  When I realized that there was an aquatics class going on in the lap pool and the one remaining lane was already occupied I practically sighed with relief.  I had already showered in advance so I was already wet and decided to spend some time in the hot tub.  I ended up skipping the swim and just decided to cycle for 20 minutes (which was on my training schedule)  I could swim tomorrow.  As I changed and headed up to the cardio area my energy picked up a bit.   I think I really just didn't want to swim, even though there was only 800 yards on the schedule.  This week is week 4 which is a taper week meaning that you go easy this week to allow your body to recover so you can hit it harder and increase your distance/intensity the next week.  I started out great on the bike but by the time 20 minutes rolled around I was dying and ready to get off.  I felt silly just working out for 20 minutes and I still had a ton of time to kill before I had to pick up my kids so I walked on the treadmill for about 25 minutes.  I was thinking of trying the bodyflow class which is a gentle yoga but I just didn't have the energy.  I finished up, picked up the kids, fed them and then we all went to bed.  I was so tired I just collapsed.  I slept for about an hour and a half and then got up.  The kids slept for another hour which was nice as I was able to solidify plans to go see Mad Max on Saturday with Matt and my sister.

My mom made a surprise visit which was nice, and she said "are you losing some more weight?"  Which was awesome because it means that there have been visible changes in my body over the past four weeks.  Today I also thought that my legs looked slightly smaller than they have been looking over the past 7 months or so.

It's now 8:00 and I'm already exhausted again.  I hope the kids will go to bed easily tonight although my hopes are not too high since they both took a two and a half hour nap.  Besides Matt isn't home yet and I didn't cook enough spaghetti noodles for him so I will have to fix him up something to eat.

Here's to holding on by a thread, and hoping that tomorrow dawns bright and sunny. 

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Self Doubt

Something I have been really struggling with lately is self doubt.  I get really self conscious about the way I look, and my abilities.  Yesterday I was going for a bike ride with my husband and father in law.  As we were getting set up I felt really awkward.  It's only my second mountain bike ride and there were several other bikers gearing up to go riding since it was a popular trail.  I felt silly because I didn't have proper biking clothes (I was wearing my Zumba clothes of course since that is all I have), I didn't know how to put the front wheel back on my bike and hook the break back up, I don't have clip on shoes (and even if I did I wouldn't know how to use them), and I had no idea what the people around us were talking about (various bike parts and upgrades).  I started to feel stupid as I waited for my husband and father in law to finish checking over my bike (I was watching and trying to learn of course).  I felt fat in my clothes as everyone around was wearing their sleek biking gear, and they were all lean and muscular.  But then I started to think, you have to start somewhere.  I can't let my self doubt interfere with my goals.  If I do then it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy and of course I will fail.  If you never start, you won't get better.  If you don't try and get yourself dirty then you won't ever learn.  I have come a long way since I started.  When Matt and I first started dating he took me on a few mountain bike rides and I did terribly on them.  I wasn't really exercising at the time and I wasn't really interested in pushing myself or doing any sort of physical activity like that.  Yesterday we went on a trail and we biked for two hours!  I was really pushing myself up the hills and trying not to be super slow (even though I was obviously slower than the two boys they still said I was doing great for my second ride).  I did much better on this ride than on the first ride.  I didn't fall off my bike for one, and I was able to steer better for two and I made it up most of the hills without stopping.  I even made it through the two stream crossings just fine.
I may not look the coolest, and I may not be the leanest biker in town but I sure did my best and gave it my all.  I had a ton of fun too.  I really enjoyed being out in the mountains and getting a good workout and doing an activity with my family.  Matt had a blast too, he kept saying how fun and great it was to go out and do something like that with me.  He has always loved mountain biking and his previous attempts to get me involved in the sport didn't work so well.  Eventually he just gave up as I continued to gain weight.  If I had let my self doubt get in the way it would have robbed me of a great experience, valuable training, and time spent with family. 

The other attack of self doubt came today when I went to the gym to do my run and then my swim.  Today was laundry day and all my workout clothes were in the wash, so I had to fish out some workout clothes I never wear.  I wore my Turbo Fire tank top with some purple pants and I felt super stupid.  I NEVER wear tank tops when I workout, I don't think I look good in them.  I always feel fat and think I look awful.  Besides that it just feels weird because I just never wear tank tops anyway.  I could have used that as an excuse not to workout today but I did anyway and I had the best run I've had in weeks!  I've been struggling through these longer runs but today was 28 minutes long and I totally nailed it!  I felt great!  When my time was up I was all like "that's it? I'm done?  I could keep going for a while!"  If I had let my self consciousness interfere with my run I would have robbed myself of the great experience I had, and the realization that I have been making progress.  I'm not there yet, but I have come a very long way.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Hives and a weigh in

Still in the storm here, but I think we are approaching the end.  Chloe's fever finally broke yesterday and today she seems to be in a much better mood.  She still went down for a nap pretty early and easily, around 11:45.  Lily woke up this morning with a fever of 102.2 and by 9:00 it was 101.5.  So going down a little but not much.  Lily was holding out that we would leave for the Ranch today if she felt better so this morning when she woke up at 5am she crawled into our bed and said "I'm all better" as she is shaking and moaning.  I got her to go back to sleep until 7am thank goodness but she still refused to take any medicine because if she did that would mean she was still sick and we couldn't go to the ranch.  Around 10am she finally consented that she was still sick and took some medicine and said it was okay to not go to the ranch as long as we went to grandma and grandpa's house tomorrow and played in the pool.  I have my fingers crossed that her fever will be gone by tomorrow morning.  I think she is about 36 hours behind Chloe so her fever will hopefully break by tonight. 

Yesterday I had a huge scare when Lily woke up and her whole lower back and legs were red, swollen and had huge white looking blisters all over.  I about had a panic attack.  Fortunately Matt was home and took one look at it and said they were hives.  I sent a picture to my mom and she confirmed they were hives.  I gave her some Claritin kids allergy medicine and they went away within about 2 hours, thank goodness, leaving behind red and slightly inflamed skin.  They were so bad she had to take her underwear and pants off because the lines were rubbing against the hives.  Later she took an oatmeal bath which she thought was the best thing in the world.  Chloe didn't get hives so I have no idea why Lily broke out.  Nothing has changed in her environment and she has been inside the past three days so I don't know what she would have gotten into.  Mom thinks it might be because Lily has more sensitive skin and her body just reacted to having such a prolonged high fever.  I do have some pictures of Lily's hives but I feel awkward putting them up here so I just got a picture from Google.

It looked like that all over her lower body, my poor girl. 

Lily is sleeping now, she fell asleep on the couch while watching a movie.  Definitely still not feeling good.  I haven't been able to get her to take a nap since she was 2 years old and she has taken four naps since she got sick AND gone to bed at her normal bed time AND has woken up an hour later than usual.  Totally not normal behavior.  Usually if she takes a nap she is up until 10pm.  Well I hope that this is going to be over with soon.

In other news I weighed in yesterday and I am down to 151, meaning I lost one pound last week.  At first I was inclined to be discouraged until I started to think about how hard I am working.  I know I have been really sore several days over the past week, so I am sure I am building some muscle, also I have been eating a fair amount every day to keep my energy levels up so I can continue to exercise like I do (around 1800 calories a day) and losing 1 pound while eating 1800 calories a day is fine with me.  Also I know that it isn't an artificial number.  Sometimes when I lose weight the scale will drop several pounds and I will freak out because I feel like if I eat one thing or get off track even in the slightest that the scale will jump back up.  I don't have to worry about that here because I already have been eating a fair amount and I know the scale isn't going to do anything crazy if I have a dessert. 

Yesterday was by far the hardest day with the kids being sick.  Although Chloe's fever broke she was still obviously not well.  Cranky, clingy, sleepy, wouldn't eat.  And then the whole thing with the hives!  I was doing well until about 3pm which is when the hives hit.  Then I started snacking on the kids goldfish, and then I ate some beef jerky.  I had a healthy dinner of salmon with veggies and a little bit of rice.  After the kids were in bed I had one bowl of ice cream, and made sure to keep it at one bowl.  I felt I deserved it.  I stopped tracking after lunch when I started snacking.  I know I was over yesterday but I didn't go crazy overboard.  I didn't get in a workout yesterday which is what made staying within calories so difficult.  Still, I am not upset, and I am just focused on making today better.  Since it's Sunday it is another day of no exercise.  I have 450 calories remaining for the day and I intend to stay under my calorie goal.  I know that if I do well with my eating the rest of the week I will be just fine. 

Friday, May 22, 2015

Conquering when times get tough

Yesterday was HARD.  It became clear by the early afternoon that we were not going to be able to go on our vacation this weekend.  Both of the kids had 103 degree fevers.  It was also a very low key day.  We had a princess marathon watching Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, The Little Mermaid, and so on.  Since the day was so low key, that means not much was going on to keep my busy.  I was also pretty tired/sleepy which is another trigger for me.  So combine not doing anything (or at least not going anywhere aka being home all day watching movies with two feverish kids), the stress from the kids being sick, being upset about having to cancel our weekend vacation, and you have a perfect storm for emotional eating.  My internal dialog went something like this all day long "You are emotional, not hungry.  Eating a bunch of food is not going to solve any of your problems.  You are emotional, not hungry.  Eating a bunch of food is not going to solve any of your problems."  We have chocolate fudge ice cream in the freezer and it was very hard not to delve into it.  My food choices may not have been stellar yesterday, I don't think I ate a single vegetable all day, but my total calories were under 2000!  ( I ended the day at 1,959).  Huge personal non scale victory!  It would have been so easy to eat well over 5,000 calories yesterday with how crummy I felt and how stressed I was with being home alone with the kids all day.  Matt was gone working from 7am-9:30pm because he had planned all his work into today to prepare for the weekend, which now we won't get to take advantage of it being rainy, cold and two feverish kids.  But I stayed strong, and *mostly* out of the kitchen. 

Fortunately yesterday the kids seemed to be on opposite cycles and fortunately the children's Ibuprofen helped a lot.  So as one kid's medicine wore off and they began to feel really sick again, the other one would start feeling better and need a little less attention.  And they would go back and forth.  They even took naps at different times.  In the morning I was feeling incredibly snacky, that is when the urge to eat uncontrollably started.  I stayed firmly planted on the couch holding the kids and watching Sleeping Beauty for the umpteenth time until 10:00 when I decided to have some of the air popped popcorn that we made after Lily's dance recital yesterday.  I measured out 4 cups and I figured there was about 1/2 TBSP butter on it since in the whole bowl (1/2 cup unpopped popcorn, I have no idea how much that makes: all I know is it make one big bowl ha!).  I still wanted to munch after that but I drank some water and forced myself out of the kitchen.  Around 11:00 in order to distract myself I figured we would do school but after about two minutes it was very clear that Chloe needed to go to bed.  So I spent time putting her to bed, and then since Lily was feeling well due to her medicine I gave her the IPAD and I did Zumba World Party on the Wii.  The last 15 minutes were pretty tough and I was starving, so I went and ate lunch- more than I normally would have, but I had just done Zumba so I wasn't too worried and I was more focused on not binging.  I really wanted to delve into the ice cream but I have one hard and fast rule that is very important and that is this


If I eat sweets when I am hungry I don't just eat a treat, I eat and eat and eat and eat and eat and eat and eat.  I'm unstoppable and uncontrollable mostly because I'm hungry, and things taste better when you are hungry so those sweets just taste irresistible and I want more and more and more.  It's a terrible cycle.  So, I never never never eat sweets when I am hungry.  I will eat them after lunch or after dinner and it it much much easier to control my portions and stop after having just a little bit when I am already satisfied from my meal.  (Notice I said easier, not that it was easy to stop).  So I ate a yogurt and some tamales, and some BBQ chips and drank 24 oz of water and I felt much better and stayed out of the treats.  I knew that if I got into the sweets it wasn't going to be pretty due to the emotional factor that was hanging over me all day. 

The afternoon proved to be harder still, my mood started effecting my thinking and all my negative thoughts came flooding back.  During my shower I just felt fat and I started thinking "what is the point of all this?  I'm working so hard and I'm not making any progress, I still look awful and I will never reach my goals, I might as well give up and go eat that ice cream."  It took all of my mental powers to push that voice to the background (since I couldn't seem to shut it up) and remind myself that I am just finishing out week 3, which really isn't much time at all.  I have to allow myself time, which is the hardest part.  I think because I have been good for two weeks I should be at goal but it just doesn't work that way.  It is the day in and day out efforts that add up over time. 

Time is so weird.  One moment it can seem like time is flying by, and the next it can seem like a lot more time should have passed than has.  I was doing great the first half of the week, feeling good, spirits high and thinking "this is going great!  I've made great progress, I'm doing well, sticking to my training, and changes are happening".  Today I'm thinking "I've been doing this forever, I'm tired, I'm going to fail, this is stupid, why even bother?"  It's the times like this that it is important to coach yourself down from the ledge.  A skill I had not heretofore learned, but I am now being forced to learn (which is a good thing) because I just can't quit.  That isn't an option because I have a commitment to race in this triathlon and there is more than just me tangled up in it.  My father in law just bought me a wetsuit!  I can't let him down.

There are so many skills to continue to learn, and learning to cope with the hard days is among my top priority.  It should be among yours too because it always seems that we start off strong but sometime around week 3, something comes along and smacks us down and if we don't know how or don't try to work our way through those problems we will never get anywhere because life never stops, something always comes along.  There will be one challenge after another and learning to overcome those challenges is where we grow, is where we change.

I used skills yesterday that I have been working on building for over two years.
 1. never eat sweets on an empty stomach
2. Workout when you feel tired or lethargic, it might make you feel better.  (If you start to exercise and then just continue to feel worse as the workout progresses then stop, you probably need a rest day).
3. Substitute something better for something worse, or in other words, choose the lesser of two evils (I chose popcorn and butter over bowls of ice cream in the morning, I chose animal crackers and beef jerky over cookies in the evening.  I made some hot tea to drink at night instead of snacking more and I put splenda in it.  Animal Crackers and Beef Jerky may not be the healthiest choices but I guarantee they are better than eating 12 cookies (I made sure to eat only one serving of animal crackers and I measured out my Beef Jerky portion).  There is a lot of controversy over artificial sweeteners and splenda in particular (along with aspartame) but I guarantee it's not as bad as downing half a gallon of ice cream),
4. Distraction.  In the morning I tried to do preschool with the kids and failing that, ended up exercising instead.  In the afternoon I put my headphones on and resolutely stayed out of the kitchen and then later ended up grooming my dog. 
5. Mental Coaching- learning to shut up all the negative self talk is very important, or in failing shutting it up, pushing it to the back of your head, then remind yourself of some truths and the reason why you are doing what you are doing.  Don't let negative half truths or lies derail you.
6. Repeating a mantra- "I am emotional not hungry, eating a bunch of food is not going to solve my problems".  This helped remind me that in fact, I was not hungry I was just stressed and stuck at home and in fact I did not need to eat. 

This is an important post for me because this is the first time I have been able to make it through an incredibly difficult day without binging.  I ate more than planned, but again, the lesser of two evils.  I would rather eat 1900 calories any day than 5000.  I feel good about how I handled yesterday, I feel empowered and I know that since I have done it once, I can do it again.  It is all about being in the moment and dealing with the current situation, and I do feel like I have made progress.  Reflecting on yesterday has been eye opening.  I should print my own list of tools and keep it handy.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Rainy and Cold

I do not know what is up with the weather lately.  It has been cold and rainy every day for the past three weeks!  It's starting to drive me crazy.  I was all ready for summer, and then BAM! It feels like we are in the middle of December again.  It's even snowed several times over the past few weeks!  Currently it's a nice 38 degrees outside, foggy and drizzly.
That's outside, lovely gray sky.  What you can't really see is all the drizzle, everything is soaking wet

Yuck.  And next week is supposed to be more of the same!  It seriously feels like a second winter.  The kids are both sick again.  Chloe has a raging fever, and won't eat anything.  Fortunately she is getting liquids in the form of apple juice.  Lily has a more mild fever and is mostly just tired and cranky.  We are supposed to spend the weekend in the mountains but it doesn't look like we will be going.  It's supposed to be cold all weekend and snow on Sunday.  I can handle the mid 50s, that's not too bad (we have a heated cabin) but if it's going to rain and snow all weekend that is another thing.  If the kids are still sick tomorrow morning we aren't leaving regardless so I suppose it doesn't matter anyway.  Lily wants to go so badly.  I told her that if she is sick we can't go to the ranch and she immediately goes "I'm all better!".  If only it were that easy.
38 degrees, 98% humidity, A low of 37 and a high of 39 since midnight and 68 degrees in the house.  Ridiculous weather for this time of year

Ok, enough of my rant.  Tuesday and Wednesday were pretty good days.  Chloe didn't get sick until Tuesday night.  I made sure to do my run first this time at the gym and it was a lot easier.  I decided to do my swim in the same day since I knew I needed to have a day off later in the week.  It was a tough swim, I just didn't have much energy for it, probably because I expended all my energy in my run.  Yesterday I did a bike ride and went to Zumba.  Today I'm feeling pretty tired so I suppose it's a good thing that we are just staying home today and resting.  If I can get the kids to take a nap I plan on doing Zumba World Party on the Wii.  I just feel better if I can get a workout in these days.

On that note I have found that my body is now beginning to be more familiar with running.  Before I started the 10K training program running seemed foreign to me and whenever I ran anywhere, whether it was after the kids or to the mail box, it felt like my body was freaking out and saying "what is going on!  what are you doing? stop that right this instant".  I felt awkward, and surely couldn't keep running for any amount of time.  And if I was carrying anything?  (like my gym bag or one of my kids) forget it!  Out of the question.  Three steps and I was done.  But lately we have been running from the car into the gym (why?  remember all that rain I mentioned earlier?  yup, that's why, trying not to get too wet.)  Anyway, I've noticed that my body isn't freaking out as much as I run (I'm talking strictly outside of my planned runs).  It seems to be getting more used to the feeling.  When I first start I still get that initial freak out of wait, what is going on!  But after a little bit, my body seems to say, "Okay, I know what this is, we are good". It's interesting how you can train your body to be more comfortable with certain situations and activities.  I'm glad that I'm getting better at running.  I've always wanted to be able to run and not feel like I was about to die after I just started.

Yesterday, about 3pm I noticed that my mouth was so dry it felt like clay.  I have been slacking on drinking water since Sunday and my body finally put up the red alert.  I literally had no spit in my mouth.  I ate a yogurt and it felt like mud my mouth was so dry, it was really weird.  So I made it my mission to hydrate the rest of the afternoon.  It was like going on a water binge (which I suppose as binges go, is probably the best thing to binge on).  I started out by drinking two 24oz glasses of water, and then I couldn't drink anymore.  After my first bathroom break I drank another one.  Then I had to go out for Lily's Dance recital.  When I got home I drank two more 24oz glasses of water which probably puts me at the most water I've ever drank in a single day.  Needless to say, there were many trips to the bathroom.  However this morning I feel much better and back to normal.  Note to self:  do not neglect your water, especially when you are working out an hour to an hour and a half a day.  

My food has been pretty solid. I haven't gone over my calories, here is what I ate on Tuesday:

Breakfast: 1 c. cottage cheese  1/2 c. organic apple sauce no sugar added, 1 tbsp chia seeds, 2 tbsp flax pumpkin granola, 1 cup almond milk
Lunch: Gamjatang with Rice- 1 large bowl (we went to get Korean Food.  This is a potato and pork soup dish with lots of veggies.  I love it)
Dinner: 2 Kiwis, 1 Peanut butter banana oatmeal "cookie" (I was still pretty full from lunch
snacks: Lemon Larabar
Total calories: 1,502

and for Wednesday
Breakfast:  1 cup cooked oatmeal, 1 tbsp chia seeds, 2 tbsp PB2, 1 tbsp brown sugar, 1 cup almondmilk
Lunch : popped chips BBQ flavor, yogurt, 2 kiwi, lots and lots of water
Dinner: Szechwan Shrimp
Snacks: Dark chocolate mocha almond bar, 2 peanut butter banana oatmeal "cookies" (they aren't really cookies, they are the three ingredient cookies I wrote about a few days ago )
4 cups air popped popcorn, 1/4 tbsp butter, frozen greek yogurt
Total calories: 1,775

My journal on MFP is public so you can check it out for more details.  Jenna_bug720

Well if we end up not going to the mountains this weekend I will blog again either tomorrow or Saturday but if we do decide to go I won't be blogging until Tuesday.  We don't get internet or cell phone reception where we are going.  I hope you all have a great Memorial Day weekend and the weather is better where you are than here!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Running and Zumba

As luck would have it, I ended up having a 45 minute chunk of time to kill in the evening.  I thought I would have Chloe with me at this time but Matt got home early and she was able to stay home.  Good thing too because she has been really fussy all afternoon regardless of her nap.  Lily has an extra dance practice tonight to prepare for the performance on Wednesday night.  I guess after the disastrous outcome of the last performance she decided they needed some extra practice.  (Last time there was a kid crying through the whole thing and only a few of the kids were doing what they were supposed to be.  Most were just standing around looking confused).  Hopefully this one goes a little more smoothly.  Anyway, here I am at the gym and Chloe is at home.  I came this morning and ran 25 minutes and did Zumba toning after that.  I was thinking of swimming, but I just ate at 5:15 and got here at 5:30 and figured that would probably be a bad idea.

My run this morning went well.  Much better than the first 25 minute run I did.  That might be because I did the run second last time and this time I did the run first, but then again the first time I go up in running time is always difficult.  My heart rate gradually rose throughout the workout.  It went from 155 near the beginning to 178 by the end, which is only a little lower than 181 of last time.  But I am glad it was lower, again I am not sure if that is due to putting my running first instead of last.  I burned a ton of calories though.  395 calories for 35 minutes!  That was with a 5 minute walking warm up and a 5 minute walking cool down and 25 minutes of jogging at 6mph.  I'm working my way up!  I have one more run at 25 minutes then I go up to 28 for two times then 30 minutes which is a full 5k which is as far as I have ever raced before.  Then it is into uncharted territory with running longer than 30 minutes.  It seems so crazy to me!

After my run I went into Zumba toning, but the regular teacher was gone.  The sub was good, but she did a lot of different moves and killed my shoulders, which I suppose from a workout perspective was good because I am getting more variation and it was so much harder!  But I do like the regular instructor more.  Maybe if I took the sub's class more often I would like it better as my arms got stronger in the areas she really works.  I didn't think I was pushing myself too hard but I still managed to burn 530 calories in 55 minutes!  There have been several times I have taken a Zumba class and only burned 380 calories because I wasn't really trying.

In other news Lily got her hair cut today.  She has been complaining that her hair is too long.  She doesn't like to brush it.  We cut it into a bob, which I thought was still a little long but we will see how she does with it.  I was thinking of getting her a pixie cut but Matt wasn't on board and the hair stylist said her hair was too thin and putting a pixie cut on her would make her look too much like a boy.  So I suppose the bob was a better choice.
She did great, I was really surprised.  She was so excited to get her hair cut shorter so it wouldn't get so tangled and it would be easier to brush her hair.

Tomorrow I am going to be doing a swim and a run.  I'm trying to wait as long as I can before I bike again because my butt still hurts from sitting on the seat!  Wednesday will be another swim and Zumba and I haven't decided if I will take Thursday off yet, we will see how the kids are doing but I will either finish up with the bike on Thursday or Friday.  Friday is Zumba, but we are also supposed to be leaving on our mini vacation (to the ranch near Gunnison, nothing extravagant) Friday afternoon and I might need to use the morning to pack and get ready.  It always seems to take forever to get everything ready.  

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Sunday Strong

The biggest challenge on Sundays is staying within my calories.  I never exercise on Sundays and as a rest day, I am usually sitting most of the day and it is also the day that I usually bake.  Fortunately I didn't have to bake anything today as we have a bunch of homemade empanadas that a member of our church made as a part of a fundraiser for her boys summer camps, and we still have cookies left over.  However, that did mean there was a lot of sweet things to eat in the house that I had to stay out of.

The afternoon was the hardest time of the day for me.  I really wanted to snack from 3-4, but I put all my food into MFP and decided to stick with it.  I drank 6 8oz glasses of water and chewed some gum.  I certainly needed the water because I hadn't had any to drink yet today and it helped.  I am so bad at getting my water in.  I try.  I ended the day with 31 calories to spare for a total of 1449 consumed.  I'm not sure it was the healthiest day but I am happy with my triumph of staying within my calories.  This morning I ate oatmeal with strawberries for breakfast.  I brought a Kashi bar to church for a snack.  I love the dark chocolate with chia seeds Kashi bars.  For lunch I ate three home made tamales (from that same fundraiser we got the empanadas from).  That is probably where I could have had the most improvement.  It would have been better to eat only two tamales and then eat a bunch of vegetables with some fruit, but that didn't happen.  For dinner I made this thing called Szechuan shrimp which was basically a cold shrimp and vegetable and noodle dish.  One serving took up all the remainder of my calories for the day so I didn't make any sides.  I figured the dish had veggies, meat, and carbs in it so it was complete right?  Actually I was just making excuses to get out of more cooking.

The evening was another difficult time for me.  I was just feeling more hungry than usual today.  Maybe it's because my stomach finally feels better.  It's the first night I haven't felt sick in the evening in almost two weeks.  I drank some more water, made some tea and chewed some gum, determined not to eat any more.  I was not starving, and I don't feel deprived, just like I want to sit down and eat something not too healthy.  For instance those empanadas I didn't eat sound really good, also chips, cookies, pretzels, crackers, all the junk food.  But I don't want to eat broccoli, or any other vegetable.  So that tells me I'm not really hungry or in need of nourishment, I just want to snack.  And that is precisely the habit I want to quit and I am proud of myself for not giving in today and for staying on track. 
I didn't have a picture for today so I just posted a pic of my food log.  Aren't you so proud of me :-D

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day so I probably won't post, and then I am going to Zumba Tuesday night so I am not sure about that either.  If you don't hear from me until Wednesday you know why.  Hopefully I will have some good stories to tell by then. :-)

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Saturday Weigh In

I made it another week without weighing myself until Saturday!  I'm really glad that I didn't micro manage my weight this week because I think I would have become very discouraged during the week and it could have derailed my progress.  It is very important for my mental well being for me to not weigh myself more than once a week, I just get too obsessed and emotional about the numbers on the scale.

This morning I weighed in at 152.0, down 1.2 pounds from last weeks 153.2.  Seeing a loss of only one pound at first can be discouraging, and if I had micro managed my weight all week I would have been really depressed at not seeing the scale budge, but being able to see the whole week in one shot instead of a few ounces at a time makes a much better difference each week.  Of course I want to lose weight fast, who doesn't, and secretly I was hoping that I would be at 150, but obviously that didn't happen.  But I'm fine with 1 pound a week, because in 10 weeks I will lose 10 pounds and I would rather be 142 and running the race than still at 155 or higher from bouncing back and forth.  And 10 weeks after the race I could be 132 if I'm losing 1 pound a week, and that is right around my goal weight.  20 weeks is about 5 months, which is a shorter amount of time than I spent struggling and gaining my weight back.  Weight loss is slow.  That's how it is supposed to be, and I have other things to worry about than weight not coming off as fast as I wish it would because, lets face it, it will never come off fast enough.  So I am happy with my progress and my 1.2 pound weight loss.  I haven't been starving, I've been eating roughly 1700-1900 calories a day (but I've been working out a lot too).  I haven't been starving myself or depriving myself.  This week I ate a slice of cheesecake, and some cookies and today I had an empanada even though it put me over my calorie goal by 71 calories.  So what?! My calories today are at 1,793, I got in a quick 33 minute bike ride, and one day of being over my calories (by a pretty minimal amount) isn't going to kill me.  Besides, I'm still projected to lose weight even though I'm over my calories.  Too often we get it into our heads that just because we are over on our calories by maybe 100 or so calories we think we have blown our "diets" when in fact, we will still lose weight, just slower.  The whole thought process is messed up, it's time to wake up and realize the truth.

Ok, my small rant is over.   My personal goal is to be running the race at 140 pounds, which is slightly more than 1 pound a week from here on out, which is totally doable.  Nothing extreme, not even 2 pounds a week (which I have never been able to sustain by the way).  I want to focus on realistic goals, and real life changes.  Something that will stick.

Today we went mountain biking and I definitely need more practice.  Matt loves mountain biking so he is more than happy to help.  I wanted to make a good impression the first time I went out and show how good I've been doing working out and making progress but I managed to fall off my bike into some bushes, and then rack myself as my bike unexpectedly shifted gears as I was getting ready to bike over a large tree root.  My bike stopped and my body kept moving.... Not a very good first impression lol.  But I did pretty good biking up the uphill portion and Matt said several times I was doing a really good job, so I guess I redeemed myself during the second half of the ride.  The ride was only 33 minutes long, we had to cut it short due to rain but despite my battle wounds I am excited to go again.
Scrapes from the bushes on my right leg
That's nothing compared to what Matt has come home with on his legs before.  I suppose this is the first of many scrapes to come.  One of the downsides of exercising outdoors.  But it is much more interesting to exercise outdoors!  I don't need music to keep me going, the changing terrain and elevation does that for me :-)

Thursday, May 14, 2015


So I figure if I am going to be able to keep walking down this path I had better figure out what set me on this path to begin with.  Seriously I feel like I had to pass through Hell and back to get to where I am now.  The past 7 months have been horrible for me, physically, mentally, emotionally, and my weight has reflected that.  Gaining weight back was not fun.  Sure I was eating whatever I wanted but I was out of control and eating that way made me feel sick physically, and also made me feel worthless emotionally and mentally.  I mean it's just food right?  So why can't I get it under control?  I was doing so good and then BAM!  Now I'm spiraling out of control into an ever darker pit that threatens to consume me.  I was depressed, holding onto emotional baggage, and wishing I could change the past. 

I am doing much better now, and it didn't "just happen", I was actively seeking help, actively trying to pull myself out of the pit.  But no matter how hard I tried to pull myself out, I kept getting sucked further into the darkness.  My weight creeping up to 161 pounds at its all time high on the scale and my willpower gone.  All I wanted to do was eat, and knowing that was the one thing I shouldn't be doing made me want to eat more.  I was in a dark place.  So what changed?  How did I end up where I am now?  I'm totally rocking staying on track with my food.  Sweets are much easier to say no to, I am not having a problem with afternoon snacking, and I'm killing my training workouts.  I'm happier than I have been in years and I feel really good: physically and mentally.

One of my problems was that I was trying to climb out of the darkness, or in other words I was going against the grain, kicking against the pricks, trying to force myself into doing what I thought I should be doing and hating it all the while.  I had to pass through the darkness to see the light on the other side and resurface in a different place than where I had entered.  The first thing, and I think you will remember these blog posts, I had to do was let go of my past.  My past was holding me down emotionally.  I had to let it go and embrace the here and now.  I cannot change the past, I can only learn from the past and work to make my present and my future the best it can be.  How did I let go of the past?  It wasn't easy.  It took A LOT of prayer and scripture study and tears, but eventually I was able to feel peace, comfort and love.

Once I let go of the past I took action to make my present better.  I knew I wanted to do more activities with my kids.  I felt like the days were unstructured, and the kids watched too much TV.  But I don't really like playing with the kids toys.  So I embarked on another project and I bought the kids a bunch of activities and toys that I would like to play with.  I bought the kids a bunch of educational toys from Melissa and Doug, things that I could interact with them more and teach them something.  Something we could do together.  Another note on this is that my husband who is getting his doctorate in Psychology was taking a training on something called KIPS so he could do parent child interactionals (basically evaluating how well parents interact with their children).  I watched the training videos with him as they were really interesting and they talked about 12 different categories ranging from physical touch, language development, giving direction, setting expectations, choosing age appropriate activities, etc.  This helped me gain some insight on how to better interact with my kids and get the most out of our time together.  Next, I found an online preschool program that I knew would be great for both of the kids.  Preparing for the preschool program (printing and laminating activities etc) gave me more purpose and doing the preschool in the afternoon used up time I otherwise would have spent eating.  Now I am teaching my children, playing with them, interacting with them, and working on things to do with them instead of sitting around being bored, bemoaning my life and stuffing my face with food.  When I am busy I am not hungry and I just had way too much free time before because the day was so structureless and I never had anything planned in the afternoon.  Now, with preschool in the afternoon and preparation coming whenever I can fit it in I have much less time to sit around and think about food.  I am enjoying it and the kids are enjoying it and we are all much happier.

The next thing that happened is that I actually started my triathlon training program.  I am registered and training and now suddenly the whole thing seems much more real.  This is something that I am going to do, there is no way out of it now and I certainly don't want to be the laughing stock of the race.  I don't want to come in so far behind everyone else that the course clean up crew passes me by.  I have read several stories of people signing up for races and then coming in so far behind everyone else that even the race markers are removed before they finish.  That sounds like a nightmare!  I want to give it my all and do my best.  I don't mind coming in near the end of the pack but I would like to not come in dead last either, or if I do at least not so far behind I embarrass myself.  This gives me motivation, and determination to not only track my food but to also stay within my calories and to say no to extra treats.  This also gives me a reason to do my absolute best at the gym, instead of just getting through my workouts I give it my all and try to improve.

Another piece of the puzzle is that I started wearing my HRM while exercising again.  I'm keeping track of my HR and using the calories burned on my HRM during my exercises to determine my exercise calories for the day.  I am taking out all calories given me by my fitbit since it isn't accurate for things like Zumba or swimming and biking anyway.  Also, it gives me calories for things like cleaning which I don't consider an official workout.  The extra calories it gave me throughout the day just threw me off and confused me.  I never knew if I should or should not be eating those calories and the general confusion it caused gave me an excuse to not track and eat whenever and whatever I felt like.  Now I set my calories at losing 1 pound per week and I only add in the calories I burn reflected on my HRM.  I am allowed to eat all of my exercise calories in a day if I want to eat them, but I have found that most days I don't eat all my exercise calories.  Days where I don't exercise are harder to stay within my calorie goal, but all I have to do is take a look at the race registration taped to the fridge and remember that I am a triathlete now and if I want to survive the upcoming race I need to stay on track.

Water.  OH my goodness, water.  My nemesis.  The first week I felt sick after drinking water.  Seriously I would drink a little bit of water and my gag reflex would go off and I thought I was going to puke.  One week later I found my mouth becoming dry and I would more willingly drink some water, which then made my stomach hurt and I felt sick.  Two weeks in, water in much more tolerable and I find myself reaching for water more than my diet pepsi.  Water still makes me queasy but I know it's important and I'm working hard to change my habit of drinking more diet pepsi than any other liquid.  It pays off in the long run, I don't feel queasy for too long and drinking more water makes me feel satisfied longer and so I am not as hungry.

Weigh ins: I have a very strict rule of weighing in only once a week.  I know I get scale obsessed and this is still very hard for me to adhere to but it is pretty much my only rule.  I can weigh in once a week, therefore I might as well not think about my weight every day because there is no point.  I will find out Saturday morning and I had better keep off the scale in the meantime.  This has helped me become less weight obsessed, less scale obsessed, and allowed me to focus more on living life every day to its fullest, making choices based on health and fitness rather than what it will do to the scale the next morning.  It frees up space in my mind and helps me to accept myself and my body at where I am now instead of where I want to be several months in the future.  I used to think "I can't wait until this month is over because I will be x pounds lighter".  Now it's about "How far can I progress this month in my fitness?"  My focus has changed.

Did you catch that?  My focus has changed Somewhere along this weight loss journey your focus has to shift from losing weight and wanting to fit into a certain size jeans to wanting to be healthy and fit and wanting to live life to its fullest and enjoy life.  That's what drives you to the end and helps you maintain.  I thought I had hit that point before but it was just a basic understanding of that is what should happen, a desire to have it happen to me.  And that is where it starts.  But I still was weight loss driven, I still hated my body, and hated the fat on my body, and really it was still all about hitting a number on the scale and fitting into a certain size pants.  And to be perfectly honest, all that is still there lurking beneath the surface but it is secondary now.  Now I am more interested in being active, being happy, doing things, going places, moving forward.  I know that what I am doing now will cause my body to change and when my body stops changing is where my new habits will have lead me and maybe by then I will be happy with the changes in my body and my pants size and I won't have to think about it so much, or maybe it is just one more challenge I will have to over come, one more thing I will some day need to let go of.

For now I am taking things one day at a time.  Every day is a new day with different challenges, different activities to overcome, yesterday is gone and the only thing that matters now is today and the future.  

A lot of little things, (okay and some really big things) have added up to some serious changes in my attitude, and my physical and mental actions.  This is how the change came about.  Now I know, and now you know.  Take action.  If you can't get yourself to count calories now then what is something that you can do?  If you can't get yourself to stop snacking in the afternoon then what is something that you can do?  I didn't start preschool with the kids thinking "this will stop my afternoon snacking" I started preschool because I wanted to be more involved, I wanted more structure, I wanted to do something fun, and as a result I became busier and my afternoon snacking subsided.  I felt like I had more purpose and became happier.  I'm not perfect, far from it, but I have made a lot of progress. 

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

A New Me

I think I like Mondays.  I had a great Monday yesterday.  I've discovered that time doesn't flow normally for me.  My days are pretty much the same all week long.  There really is no break and so there is no beginning.  Therefore, there is nothing to dread about Monday like most people dread the start of a new work week or the first day back at school.  Monday for me means Zumba toning, and I have come to really like the Monday morning Zumba toning class.  I really don't like to lift weights, and I really don't like the body pump class, but I love the Zumba toning class.  It's definitely not anywhere near as intense as a body pump class but I was sore last week and I am sore today.  Last week I was really sore in my legs, today I am sore in more concentrated areas and it's not as intense which is nice.  I hate being so sore I can't move.  That motivates no one to go do it again. 

Monday Morning I had a 1,000 yard swim on the schedule which I completed and I even shaved off 3 seconds of my 50 yard swim.  Although I couldn't keep that pace for an extended period of time.  I have noticed that I am using my legs more, kicking harder and therefore my legs are burning more.  I can definitely see the benefit of having strong legs.  I think after the triathlon they will be dead.  I burned 233 calories in 27 minutes of swimming and then rocked it out at Zumba toning and burned another 539.  I ate 1,822 calories and had 430 left over that I didn't eat.  I also haven't been having my typical afternoon slump lately which is awesome.  Maybe it's because I have had things to do.  Yesterday I started the homeschool Preschool program I found online and the kids loved it.  I finally got the calendar laminated and all ready to go just in time.  I think the Calendar was one of their favorite parts.
Aren't they so cute!  Chloe was in and out of the activities which is totally fine, she is only 2 and there are lots of other toys and books and things for her to do in that room while Lily and I work on other school stuff.  But she would be so sad if she were left out, besides it's good for her to get exposed to the alphabet, she doesn't know it at all.  The crazy thing is Lily has known the alphabet since she was Chloe's age!  She is one smart cookie. 

Here are some other super cute pictures of our preschool activities from yesterday and today.

And probably my very favorite photos was of the movement activity where we made our bodies look like the letter A.  The kids found it fascinating and I found it incredibly cute.

Today I took my bike out for an actually bike ride for the first time in over 6 years.  I want to get as many bike rides outside as I can before the tri since it will be a mountain biking segment.  I went out for 30 minutes and I was so wobbly at first!  I couldn't hardly stay on the sidewalk to get over to the greenbelt.  After about 2 minutes I was doing much better but I had to figure out all the gears again.  Riding outside is definitely different than riding a stationary bike inside.  I burned 244 calories in 30 minutes riding outside on fairly level ground.  I really tried to push myself (not too hard since it was supposed to be an easy ride, but since there weren't really any hills I thought I was doing fine with my pace).  And managed to keep my heart rate around 140 for most of the ride.  My average however was 135 and my max was 157 when I was going up that one hill.

Maybe I have finally found a purpose, maybe I have finally rediscovered my why, I'm not sure what happened (which I know is of absolutely no use to you) but the last week and a half since I started training has just been great.  I have been excited for my workouts, I have been tracking everything and I have been staying within my calorie range, often not even eating all my workout calories because I just wasn't hungry.  I definitely think that being sick to my stomach for a while has had an effect on my decreased appetite.  I hope that once I get all better again I don't start going crazy with food again.  I haven't been obsessing over my weight, I haven't been weighing every day.  The thought will cross my mind "I wonder what I weigh now" but then I remind myself it's not weigh in day and besides that, it's not really all that important anyway.  What is important is that I eat right and that I am doing the very best I can in every training session.  I am still struggling to eat enough vegetables.  Today I ate 1,680 calories and the only vegetables I managed to eat were the onions in my fajitas.  Not very stellar. 

I did eat some cheesecake today, my first real dessert since I started training.  Which is amazing given my history of sugar obsession.  I just haven't wanted to waste the calories on it.  I weighed out my cheesecake: 4 oz.  I didn't seem like a lot on the plate since I am used to eating large slices of dessert, but it was enough and I couldn't even finish it.  I think my stomach is still a little upset, either that or my week and a half of hardly no desserts has already altered my senses.  But that doesn't seem right because I have gone off sugar for two and three weeks before only to binge on it later.  Maybe it's because this time it's not off limits.  I can eat it if I want to, I even usually have extra calories to spend on it if I wanted to... I just don't want to. 

Something weird is definitely going on.  I wish I could identify it, and I'm terrified that things will just go back to the way they were.  It's like everything I've been praying for for the last 3 years has been granted.  I feel more purposeful and like I am interacting with the kids and teaching them not just surviving.  I have more energy throughout the day, my afternoon energy crashes are really minimal, unlike the ones that left me passed out on the couch.  My food is under control, and even my thoughts.  I'm happier with myself, and my body.  I know I want to lose weight but I also know that it isn't going to happen overnight and I am okay with where I am at now.  I know I will continue to make progress since I am doing the things that are right.  I'm not doing anything extreme, it definitely feels sustainable.  I can't say I'm content because I am still moving forward.

Looking at recent events in my life the only things that have changed is that I started a homeschool preschool program and I started my triathlon training.  The thing that is similar between both of these things is a schedule.  I have been living with no schedule since Lily was born.  Is it possible my life just needed a schedule?  I tried several times to develop a sort of schedule but the kids were really just too little.  It's certainly something to keep in mind as these programs will both end, and if that is key: having an exercise schedule and having a schedule with the kids, I will need to figure out what to do next and make sure I always have a schedule from here on out.  Although I'm terrified that everything will suddenly revert back to the way it was, or the "old me" I am excited for the future because this new me is definitely worth fighting for.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mother's Day Weekend

I woke up Saturday feeling exhausted and sick.  Matt wanted to watch Avatar and we didn't get to bed until 11pm and then I couldn't fall asleep until 1am.  Whenever we watch a movie late at night I just can't fall asleep.  So I got a grand total of 5 hours of sleep Friday night.  Combined with the poor sleep I have been getting all week thanks to Chloe, I did not feel well.  I felt most of the day feeling sick to my stomach and lightly depressed.  The weather has been really weird here too.  It's been raining like crazy all week and Saturday was no exception.  We were rained on in the morning, and then we decided to cancel my Pampered Chef show due to the weather since it was flooding all over and it was supposed to rain/hail/sleet/snow all afternoon.  I took a two hour nap in the afternoon with Chloe, it was much needed.  Matt was planning on watching the kids during that time anyway so it was nice to get some much needed sleep.  Due to the weather we canceled our dinner plans which I was super bummed about, but I felt so sick I skipped dinner anyway so it's probably just as well.  I only ate 1,000 calories on Saturday which is unusual for me even if I am sick.  I usually eat my weight in saltine crackers when my stomach is upset, but on Saturday all I wanted to do was sleep.  I did have some Chamomile tea in the evening which seemed to help.  Saturday was also my weigh in day which ended up being the highlight of my day.  I was 153.2.  Down from 158.4 the previous week.  I know a few pounds of that higher number was because I had binged on cookies the night before, but I had been hanging out around 156, 155 for about 3 weeks so I am happy with 153.2.  Even if you take my weight from the beginning of April which is 154 I'm still down a pound.  So like I said, very pleased.  I ate well all week, did all my workouts, and I hope against hope that I can stay on track for the remaining 11 weeks and drop some weight so I don't feel so foolish come race day.  Overweight and Triathlon just don't mix nicely in my head.  When you think of triathlon runners I definitely don't think of overweight people, but when I signed up there was a category for women who were over 165 pounds which I thought was interesting.  So I guess just like other races, there are overweight people who are interested in doing those events.  But not me!  That is not what I want my race to look like.  I would love to finish in the middle of the pack, which would be a miracle.  Even in high school cross country I was one of the last people to cross the finish line. 

Saturday night was rough.  Chloe was feeling really sick, probably with the exact same thing I had and she woke up screaming several times and I was terrified that she had thrown up.  Fortunately she hadn't and I just rocked her back to sleep, after looking at my fitbit the next day I clocked 5 hours and 45 minutes of sleep.  I felt mildly better in the morning, but not much.  The morning proved to be pretty stressful trying to get the kids ready for church, along with myself, and get out the door on time.  I also had to finish preparing my lesson since you know I didn't do anything yesterday I was way too sick.  After church I was feeling less stressed and managed to get the family fed and Matt helped me clean the kitchen which was overflowing from me not doing the dishes yesterday.  Matt bought me a cherry tomato plant for mother's day.  (I love cherry tomatoes) and the kids bought me some Petunia's from Costco.  That was sweet of them. 

My Tomato plant and petunias

After cleaning the kitchen we packed everyone up and headed over to my grandparent's house where my whole family was meeting for dinner.  I still wasn't feeling well so I didn't eat much.  Just some of the fresh fruit they had out, one small steak, and one finger potato.  They even had sparkling grape juice which I usually down by the bottle but I didn't even finish my glass which was probably just half a cup.  I had one bite of cheesecake and knew I didn't want anything else.  It didn't even taste very good and I wonder if that is just because I'm not feeling well.  Strange though, usually sweets still taste good even when I'm not feeling well.  Several times when I've been sick I've caused myself to throw up because I ate something sweet that really aggravated my stomach.... maybe I've finally learned my lesson.  I finished today around 1500 calories which is really great for a Sunday.  I'm hoping the kids sleep tonight and I can get some good sleep in tomorrow and fell better.  I don't want to miss any days of training and besides that Zumba toning is tomorrow and I don't want to miss that. 

Happy Mother's Day to all the Mother's who read my blog!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Something Changed in my Head

Yesterday went well as far as eating goes.  I stayed home from the gym to give the kids a break and so I tried my best to stay within my calorie range.  Matt wanted to go out to eat for lunch, and fortunately he wanted to go get Korean food and there is a whole host of healthy food choices.  I ordered a soup called Doenjang Jjigae which is this fermented bean soup with vegetables which sounds gross when I write it down but I actually really like it.  It is super flavorful like a lot of Korean food.  Koreans flavor their food with spice instead of fats and oils like in American culture so their food is in general a lot healthier.  I stayed away from the rice that came with my soup, that is where Korean food will get you, rice comes with everything and you always get about a cup of rice with every meal (unless you are ordering a meal made out of rice).  At 242 calories per cup rice will really add up fast if you are eating three cups per day (yes, they eat rice with breakfast too).  Anyway, the soup looks like this:
MFP has one bowl of the soup at 211 calories.  Not bad for eating out!  I did have some of the "side dishes" which are all basically a variety of vegetables cooked and seasoned in various ways.  Also Matt ordered this Kimchi pancake thing which I know what really high in calories but I only had a few bites so I tracked half a cup of rice to make up for that.  Usually I eat at least half of the buchimgae, but since Matt wanted it and I was really trying to not go over today, I mostly stayed out of it.  I was still satisfied when I was finished eating, but not stuffed so I was proud of myself.  The buchimgae looks like this:
Even though I didn't workout yesterday I tried to stay fairly active throughout the day.  I swept and mopped the kitchen floors, which quickly became dirty again as it's been raining like crazy this week and the kids are tracking in dirt and mud more than usual.  After the floors we all went out into the backyard and I worked on weeding the walkway some more.  Chloe fell asleep around 12:30 and slept for three hours so Lily and I were able to do lots of fun activities together.  We painted, finished up her PreK workbook that I found in the dollar section at the store, did her reading lesson and our favorite made fruit kabobs!
That bottom one is Lily holding up her workbook, it's the back side that says "I Did It!" 

I ended the day with 22 calories to spare and ate 1458 calories.  I haven't had any desserts in a week and it hasn't even felt hard.  I have had a great week and I have been really motivated.  I was talking to my friend today and I thought I would write down some of the things I mentioned since it has to do with me getting out of my "old" mindset and into a brand new mindset .

My friend was lamenting how she has been off track for so long and that her eating has been out of control.  I said Sign up for a triathlon and then become so terrified of not finishing or coming in last that you freak yourself out into being good.  That's what happened to me, my training started last Saturday and I've been good with my eating ever since.  Mostly because I do not want to be the fattest one at the race, and I don't want to come in so far behind everyone else that they are cleaning up the course before I finish.  That is an embarrassment I plan on avoiding at all costs.  Once I started training something changed in my head.  I just had an intense desire to eat right and get into better shape.  To eat so that all my training can actually change my body instead of working out so much and just getting pudgier from overeating.  I set my calories at 1480 (about 1 pound loss per week) and allow myself to eat all my exercise calories and I wear my HRM to calculate how much I burn.  I eat a post workout snack about 30 minutes after my workout (basically after my shower) and that has been really helping to keep up my energy and prevent me from starving by the time I get home to eat lunch. 

I don't know if I will be able to blog again until Monday so I hope you all have a great weekend!  Weigh in day is tomorrow so maybe I will try to get in a quick post in the morning. 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Three Ingredients

Here we are on Wednesday.  My favorite Zumba class is today, which is perfect because Lily has dance class at the exact same time so we are always at the gym at the time Zumba starts.  I felt better today than I did last night.  Last night was rough, I was sore all over and aching.  I was dreading today because usually day two of being sore is the worst day, but today wasn't nearly as bad as yesterday.  Perhaps it was because I drank more water, or ate more protein, or did some cardio, or sat in the hot tub... or maybe it was because of all of those things.  My hamstrings were the most sore.  I arrived early for Zumba so I could spin before.  I had another 20 minutes on the schedule today and I definitely noticed that it was harder today.  For one thing my butt really hurt from sitting on the bike on Monday.  "Saddle sore" I believe they call it.  But I made it through and decided that I definitely need to do a ride on the bike I will be using in the actual race so I know how it feels and what the stationary bike should feel like since they are all adjustable. 

After my 20 minute spin (HR around 140, 166 calories burned) I stretched my hamstrings for a while before Zumba.  Then I headed over to Zumba, 55 minutes and 469 calories later I walked out sweaty, tired, and super happy.  Before Zumba class today there were some people having a conversation about work.  They were mostly complaining about work and how it was really hard to get to the gym and still get to work and one of the girls was going to only get 3 hours of sleep today, and on and on.  I found myself thinking "Wow, I am really lucky that I don't have to deal with that.  I'm glad I don't have to work and get to the gym and take care of the kids."  Then I thought Wow!  I have FINALLY embraced my chosen path!  I truly have no regrets and I am so happy that I get to stay home with the kids.  It is a whole different set of challenges, but I think I would prefer my challenges and the freedom and flexibility that staying home creates for me.  For the first time in a very long time, I was smiling just because almost the whole time in Zumba. 

After my workout I took 10 minutes to myself and sat in the lounge and tried my new Larabar, and I had 2 mandarin oranges and a diet pepsi as a treat.  I tried the Peanut butter cookie Larabar and I loved it!
The thing that amazed me the most about it was that it has only three ingredients!  I was floored.
I love dates.  I think at least five of the pounds I gained during my "off" season was due to discovering dried dates and eating them.  There are 220 calories, 12g fat, 7g protein and 4g of fiber.  A great recovery snack.  I would like to find a bar with a lot more protein in it that also uses all natural ingredients.  Many protein bars have around 17g protein up to 30g for some of the meal replacement bars and so far the two other bars I have tried only have about 7.  But I'm not complaining.  I would rather eat something with less sugar and more real ingredients. 

This afternoon I tried a new recipe from the Feel Great in 8 blog.  I made her 3 ingredient banana peanut butter oatmeal cookies which aren't really a dessert but I wanted to try them for a snack.  Here is what they looked like all mixed up
And here was my final product.  After they finished baking I realized I should have pushed them down because mine looked much different than Tiffany's
Here is the recipe on Tiffany's site

Mine look like a round ball instead of a cookie haha.  They were still great, and at only 47 calories per "cookie" they make a great snack.  I had three of them for an afternoon snack around 2:30 and I didn't feel hungry again until about 5:00.  Of course I was out and about until 5:00 trying on wetsuits which was quite the ordeal.  I had never been in a wetsuit before and so trying to get into one for the first time was a feat in and of itself.  I was sweating all over by the time I finally got into it.  I am supposed to go try on some other brands later and now I am not looking forward to it!  I don't know how I am going to get out of that thing quickly during the race.  I guess it is a good thing I will be doing several open water swims with my wetsuit on before the race.  I need practice putting it on and off!  I think in my training program there should be a training day where you put your wetsuit on before workout out because putting that thing on felt like an exercise in and of itself! 

Anyway, for dinner tonight I tried a new recipe from my WW cookbook I have called shrimp scampi and it was really great.  Of course it wasn't until later I realized I added too much butter, but I was only over by 2 tsp so I figure it wasn't too bad. 
It was a really easy recipe and tasted great.  My calorie goal was 1,480 and I ate 1,856, add in 635 for exercise and I have 259 calories remaining.  I'm debating on whether or not to eat one of those non fat frozen yogurts in the freezer.  They are only 100 calories.  Chloe will be awake until probably 11pm tonight since she napped from 2-5pm so I might eat it later, we will see.  

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Trying new foods

I woke up pretty sore this morning.  Doing the bike and then Zumba toning did a number on my legs and I was quite tired.  Of course Chloe getting up in the middle of the night from 2:30-4:00 could have had something to do with it. 

Today was quite busy, I made a breakfast of cottage cheese with applesauce, chia seeds, granola, and strawberries.  Chloe woke up much later than usual (at least she slept in after her midnight escapade).  This morning I made my meal plans for the week and I was really looking for something I could do for lunch as well as dinner.  I found this recipe on the Feel Great in 8 site.  I decided to make these whole grain chicken, cheddar and broccoli pockets as I thought they sounded good and I could make a whole bunch and keep them in the fridge for a while and keep some in the freezer for later.
Click here for Recipe
I made them tonight and they were really yummy.  It does take some time to assemble all of the pockets though.  Each one is 216 calories but it has your whole grain, protein, and vegetables in it!  Hopefully they will heat up nice and not be soggy coming out of the freezer.  So after my meal planning we were off to the grocery store, which wasn't too painful.  The kids kept running around but at least they were running in the same direction. 

After a rather hectic return from the store where I was trying to get everything put away, feed the kids lunch, set mouse traps, text my father in law, then send the kids outside, make lunch for me and for Matt, then get the kids gloves because their hands were cold (It's been raining and they wanted to play in the rain).... I sat down for about 5 minutes and then we went to the gym.  I needed to swim today since that was what was on my schedule but I also decided to run so I didn't have to exercise 6 days this week.  It's been cold and rainy all week and it isn't supposed to let up anytime soon.  In fact it's supposed to snow on Sunday.  Plus Matt is super busy with work and school with his exam coming up so I don't want to bother him to go run outside for 20 minutes, so to follow the program exactly I would have to go to the gym 6 days this week and that is rather hard to do with the kids.  They like the gym, but that is a little excessive.  I've already had to bribe Chloe twice this week not to throw a fit (even though she loves going to the gym, she gets pretty testy if we go too much).  I still need to go two more times, and Saturday is a new week so I guess three more times.  Tomorrow for sure because Lily has dance class.  I'm thinking of combining my swim and run again on Friday so I don't have to go Saturday too.  Once the weather clears up it should be easier to just go outside for a 30 minute run or bike.  (Especially if Matt isn't studying for exams). 

So today I ran first since getting my exercise clothes on after swimming can be a bit of a chore (mostly getting on a sports bra).  My triathlon schedule wanted me to run a total of 20 minutes which fit perfectly with the 10K trainer which was a 20 minute run as well.  5 minute warmup, 10 minute jog, 3 minute walk, 10 minute jog, 5 minute cool down.  I felt pretty good during the two 10 minute jogs.  My pace is at 6mph which is a 10 minute mile.  I would love to get faster but for now I am just focusing on surviving!  After my run I went down to the indoor lap pool for my swim.  I had 800 yards on the schedule which took me 20 minutes to do.  It was pretty easy, which is good because I set the swim workouts at the intermediate level so they get harder much faster.  I did a 200 warm up, then 2 sets of 50s with 15 second rests inbetween then 6 sets of 50s with 10 seconds inbetween and then a 200 cooldown for a total of 800 yards.  It was a bit more difficult with the shorter rest inbetween each lap.  Usually I wait 30 seconds to a minute depending on how fast I swim.  I averaged a 1 minute lap (50 yards) and that seems to be a pace that challenges me but I can keep up. 

I forgot to wear my HRM during the run so I just checked out what MFP had in the system and used that.  They have jogging at 6mph so I figured it would be pretty close.  I burned 166 calories during my swim which I thought was interesting because I burned 170 calories during 20 minutes of biking.  I just found it interesting that I burned almost the same amount of calories during both activities.  Granted I had already run before the swim so my HR was already up from that. 

Anyway.  I bought some new post workout snack bars to eat at the gym after my workouts.  I read a great article on some popular protein bars HERE called the healthiest protein bars and which ones to avoid.  Not all the bars are on that site (such as some very popular ones like Luna bars) but there is a lot of good info.  I picked up some Kind bars and some Larabars today at the store and I ate this one after my workout.

That says Maple Glazed Pecan and Sea Salt.  It was pretty good.  I liked how it was all real ingredients and I could taste the individual ingredients like the nuts and the maple flavor and the wonderful sea salt.  I just love sea salt on stuff like this.  There is 210 calories per bar which is the same as the Zone perfect bars.  There isn't as much protein, but the Zone bars I posted about yesterday have a TON more sugar in them.  They probably fit more into the realm of candy bars posing as healthy food. 

I really like the idea of getting off of all the "fake" food and eating more real foods.  Eating healthier protein bars is an easy improvement/switch to make.  I'm also going to make several of the snacks Tiffany has on her blog and see how I like them and how they make me feel. 

I earned 482 calories today from exercise and I ate 1,719 which left me with 243 calories remaining which I chose not to eat because I was full after dinner.  I did get hungry later in the evening but I chose to have some tea instead of snacking.  I really don't want to be running this triathlon at 155 pounds.  I would love to get down to 140 by then.  It's time to see what I am capable of and strive on making real changes.