Friday, September 28, 2012

Another Milestone!

It happened earlier than I thought it would, but I have now lost over 70 lbs (70.5 lbs to be exact)!  Not that it was out of reach after last week's weigh in, but since the scale has been creeping slowly downwards, I certainly did not expect to see so much loss in one week. 

Of course it comes right at the beginning of my craziest month(s) this year.  Sakief is here this weekend (yay!). I'm in ATL for Amanda's wedding next weekend.  My parents come to visit the weekend after.  Then a long girls weekend in San Diego.  And to wrap things up I go back to Pensacola for my last (sniff) visit before Sakief makes his way to Austin for good.  I do get one weekend off to relax, but then Sakief comes to visit Austin again.  Another weekend to relax before I head to Maryland for Thanksgiving.  Oy vey!  But I love it.  And hate it... travel always kills my diet.  So here is my plea friends... help me!

Remind me to pack food for the planes.  That's a big one.  I'm not a big fan of people making comments when I've already chosen what I want to eat, but I think in this case I can make an exception.  I've only got a few short months to get in beach shape, and so much travel before then!!  So shame away :)

I could not be happier today.  Thanks for all of the continued support.  I've gotten a lot of love over the past few weeks, and it means so much!

Stats this week:
Weight lost: 2.5 lbs
Total weight lost: 70.5lbs
To go: 29.5/14.5
Work outs: 2 (boo me)

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Today marks one year since I lost my grandfather.  This morning I have been reflecting on my time with him, the past year, and all of the events that were happening around the time of his death.  And what I take away from all of it is how thankful I am to all of the wonderful people that I get to share my life with.

Bumps had been hospitalized several weeks before he passed away, right before I took my board exam.  I didn't learn that he had been hospitalized until after the exam was over.  While I was angry at the time, I can't help but be thankful now.  I'd like to think that I'm a strong enough person that I could have kept myself focused on my boards, but the fact is, I would have been thinking about him constantly, and really struggled to concentrate on the most important test of my life.  So thank you to all of my family members, who I know were suffering, for sheltering me from that so that I could do my best.  And thank you of course to Sakief who helped me study, kept pushing me, and put up with my nasty mood swings in the several months leading up to the exam.

On the day that he died, I was preparing to leave for my best friend's wedding.  I had stitches removed from my leg.  I needed to go get my nails done for the wedding.  I had things to finish up at work before being out for several days.  Needless to say, it was a hectic day.  I ended up leaving work early because I was such a mess, knowing that his time was coming.  I was in such a frenzy when I got home that I busted my leg wound back open.  Thank you to Joyce who stayed late at work to patch me back up.  Thank you to Mollye who kept me company at my nail appointment, and for holding the phone for me when my dad called to give me the news.  And thank you to Laura to who kept tabs on my family in DC for me, and who so generously (and sneakily) paid for my nails to be done so that I didn't have any additional worries.

Sakief and I (with the blessing of the rest of my family) still attended Rachel and Robert's wedding that Friday.  As soon as I arrived in Ohio I was surrounded with love from Rachel and her family.  It was so great to celebrate the marriage of two wonderful people and spend time with some of my best friends, and let me forget my sadness for just a little while. 

After the wedding I got to spend several days with my family as we remembered the life of my grandfather.  Those are days that I will cherish forever.  It's amazing what you learn about someone after they have passed.  I am so in awe of my grandfather and the life that he led.  Another huge thank you to Sakief here, who went home to Pensacola to care for my pets (and who had to spend almost an entire day in the Columbus airport) so that I could be with my family. 

I miss my grandfather everyday, and am so thankful to have gotten to spend 25+ years with him.  I'm thankful that he got to see his children and grandchildren grow up; and I'm thankful that he had the chance to meet his first great grandchild.  That, to me, is what makes life worth living.

I'm thankful for my two grandmothers, who I am so lucky to have.  And for the rest of my family, my parents, brothers, sisters in law, niece, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc.  I don't know many families who are able to keep in touch like my family is (like cousins cousins cousins, I know them all it seems!).

In a few months I am heading back to Maryland for the first time since Bumps's memorial.  I am so excited to see my family, most of whom I haven't gotten to see since the memorial.  Corrie and I are hoping to go visit Bumps, who is buried at Arlington.  It's nice to think that I will have someone who understands there to hold my hand, and vice versa.

I love you Bumps.  Miss you everyday.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Another 20ish pounds!

I felt like it was time for another photo update.  I know it's hard for me to see changes in myself since I see myself everyday.  Comparing pictures is what works best.  Considering how impressed all of my friends were a few weeks ago while I was in Pensacola, I thought it was time to impress myself as well.

This outfit is no longer going to be a good one to compare myself in, as my sweater is WAY too big, and therefore I think it's hard to see how different I look.  I tried to capture just how big the sweater is on me with a side view where you can see that it kind of hangs, whereas in the older picture, it's pretty obvious that the sweater is flush against me.

49 lbs down!

68 lbs down!

I didn't lose any weight this week, but I also didn't gain, so it's a win!  Especially since I was little miss piggy last weekend.  I'm really looking forward to hitting the 70 lb mark, and hopefully not too long from now, breaking into the next decade.  Weight loss is definitely slowing down for me, I'd say partially due to the fact that it just gets harder the closer you get to your goal, and partially because I'm still having a hard time keeping my will power in check.  But I'm getting there again, and as long as my weight doesn't start to creep back up, I'm good with that.

My injuries are also healing, which will mean that I can resume a normal work out again.  Muscle relaxers are working wonders for my back and I'm going to try to get a massage this weekend which I'm hoping will only speed up recovery.  My toe also isn't bothering me so much, and I got in a few long elliptical runs this week (I decided not to push it and run on the treadmill with a broken toe, no point in knocking me out of work outs all together!).  In a few more days (once the swelling is down more) I'll resume running on the treadmill.  Need to get ready for Color Me Rad!

Stats this week:
Weight lost: 0 lbs
Total: 68 lbs
To go: 32/17
Work outs: 3

Monday, September 17, 2012

I'm a Mess

BEWARE: Complaining ahead

I have a muscle spasm in my back, a broken toe, and a stupid haircut.  First world problems to the max.  I'm on muscle relaxers that are "non drowsy" and make me feel like I have narcolepsy. 

At least I now know what's wrong with me.  Here's the problem.  No weight lifting is official by doctor's orders, and now that I broke my toe, it looks like I'm restricted to the elliptical. 

Despite my explicit haircut instructions, I managed to end up with feathers, again. 

And I ran into a door with my foot, hence the broken toe (yeah, hence!). 

Ugh.  Over it.  I just want to work out!  And not have stupid hair!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Back Pain

As you all know, I was very excited about the results from the 3-day diet earlier this week.  Unfortunately I did put a pound back on, but I am still down a total of 3 lbs since last Friday, so I'll take that as a win.  I have decided to try it at least one more time, because one of my coworkers wants to try it and I said I'd do it with her for support.  So Mon, Tues, Weds next week I'm back to it.  If it means another 3 net lbs down by next Friday, I think it may be worth it.  Even if it shows me more permanent results, I'm not sure that I want to do it all that often, I don't want to become dependent on it to continue to lose weight.  I think the only thing about putting weight back on is that I ate well and exercised the rest of the week, so I thought I'd at least maintain.  I must have lost a ton of water weight, which caused the upward movement of the scale by the end of the week, but still makes me scratch my head and think, am I not working hard enough?

On that topic though, I'm afraid I may need to take a break from working out, but we'll see what happens.  I think I mentioned awhile ago that I was having back pain after sleeping in the chair at the hospital, and had assumed that I just tweaked a muscle because of a funny sleeping position.  Now I'm not so sure.  The pain had mostly gone away until earlier this week, and now it's gotten to the point where it's hard to get out of bed in the morning because I'm in so much pain.  I have an "establish care" visit scheduled with a doc in two weeks, but I don't want to wait that long, so I think either this afternoon or tomorrow I'll visit an emergency care clinic to see what they have to say. 

I'm really hoping it's just a sore muscle and not an injured one so that I can keep working out.  Because of the pain I was experiencing earlier in the week I avoided lifting, and that doesn't seem to make a difference, it's just exercise in general.  This week I spent a lot of time on the elliptical, which I figured was the safest, lowest impact, exercise I could do, and yet, more pain.  It's even hard to use my left arm, which is especially bad (but thank goodness I'm right handed).

Stats this week:
Current weight: 216.5
Total weight lost: 68
To go: 32/17
Work outs: 3

Monday, September 10, 2012

Drum Roll Please!

As I mentioned on Friday, I was beginning a 3-day diet that promised "up to" 10 lbs of weight loss in those 3 short days.  In doing my research I discovered that many people saw more like 5-7 lbs of weight loss, which is still incredible!  I was pretty skeptical, but it certainly couldn't hurt.  So did it work?

I'd say yes!  As of this morning I weight 4 lbs less than I did on Friday.  So what if it isn't 10 lbs, or even the 5-7 lbs so many others saw?  4 lbs is incredible for 3 days!  And I'm ecstatic.  And also still a bit in disbelief (I think I got on the scale 5 times this morning, but it said 215.5 each time).  The instructions are pretty clear that you shouldn't substitute, and I did, so did that make a difference?  Maybe.  I don't really care.  What I ate worked.

My biggest hope from this 3 day diet was to take off the rest of the weight that I had gained back, and give myself a little boost.  Hopes met.

I am still reserving judgement until I weigh in on Friday to make sure that the weight stays off, but if it does, I think I may try this again. 

Here is the diet, I indicated where I made substitutions (either because I didn't buy the food, or don't like it).  I have heard it called the "Military Diet" and the "Cleveland Clinic Diet" because supposedly it was designed to lose weight quickly before surgery (and the military adopted it to use before a weigh in). 

DAY 1:
B: 1/2 Grapefruit, 2 tablespoons peanut butter, 1 slice toast (I had high fiber tortillas, type of bread wasn't indicated), Coffee/tea (No creamer, I did use splenda)
L: Slice toast (again, tortilla), 1/2 cup tuna (I hate tuna, so I used canned chicken breast), Coffee/tea
D: 3 ounces meat (whatever you want), small apple, 1/2 banana, 1 cup green beans (I ate broccoli), 1 cup vanilla ice cream (I ate Greek yogurt with vanilla extract and splenda)

DAY 2:
B: 1 egg, 1/2 banana, 1 slice toast (tortilla, yum)
L: 1 cup cottage cheese (I ate fat free), 1 hard boiled egg (not really sure it has to be hard boiled, but mine was), 5 saltines
D:  2 hot dogs, no buns (I ate turkey dogs), 1 cup broccoli, 1/2 banana, 1/2 cup baby carrots (9 or so), 1 cup vanilla ice cream (Greek yogurt again for me)

DAY 3:
B: 5 saltines, small apple, slice cheddar cheese (I ate two slices low fat swiss)
L: 1 hard boiled egg, 1 slice toast (tortilla)
D: 1 cup tuna (1 small can = 1/2 cup, again, I ate chicken), 1/2 banana, 1 cup vanilla ice cream (Greek yogurt)

The instructions say not to add any spices but salt and pepper, so it can be a bit boring at times.  Also, coffee/tea are only listed from B/L on Day 1, but I drank coffee every morning (no creamer, just splenda).  For the most part it wasn't so hard, but some of the meals are small so I got hungry earlier than expected. 

Also, you can supposedly do this once a week (3 day diet, then 4 days of regular, healthy, eating).  Like I mentioned earlier, if my weight is 215.5 or less on Friday, I may definitely try this again. 

I definitely caution anyone trying this to be sure that it will meet your nutrition needs, and to discontinue if you don't feel well (I read about several people who had hypoglycemic symptoms after a day or 2).  But good luck if you do try! 

Friday, September 7, 2012

Regaining Ground

That past few weeks have been rough weight loss wise, all of which is my fault, but rough none the less.  Thankfully I am really getting my butt back in gear, and I am back in the teens this week!  I am still up a bit over what my lowest weight has been, but I'm so happy to see some progress in the right direction. 

I decided to make a few other changes this week.  As you all know, I am addicted to Pinterest, but I haven't been experimenting as much recently.  There are a few things that I'm eager to try out, including remedies for dark circles under your eyes and those evil stretch marks.  I'd love to be the type of person who is proud of my stretch marks, and a part of me is, but I'm not a mom, I didn't go through a pregnancy and child birth to earn those stretch marks.  I ate myself fat.  And yes, I'm doing something about it, which is where my bit of pride comes from, because we all know they wouldn't be so prominent had I not lost so much weight.  But I also want them gone. 

Lastly, today I'm starting a 3 day diet that promises weight loss "up to 10 lbs".  From everything I've read people lose 5-7 lbs on average in those 3 days.  5 lbs would be awesome, so we'll see what happens when I weigh in Monday morning.  I'm comfortable trying it because it's not horribly restricting calorie wise, so I don't think I'll starve all weekend.  What I'm most skeptical of, is can that weight stay off?  I guess we'll see when I weight in again on Friday.  Again, from what I've read, if you're living a healthy lifestyle anyway, you should be able to keep off whatever weight you lose in the 3 days.  I'll share all of my findings (and the diet if it works) on Monday!

This weeks stats:
Current weight: 219.5 lbs
Weight lost: 65 lbs
To go: 35/20
Work outs: 2 (boo me! But I did run a mile, haha)

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Go Greek!

I'm a little shocked that it's taken me so long to share this recipe (and if I have, then I have a really poor memory, whoops).  It was my first Pinterest success story, and what prompted me to want to cook ALL THE THINGS that I found on Pinterest (and the recipe that convinced Sakief that Pinterest wasn't so bad after all, if it meant I cooked him delicious food).

Healthy Chicken Gyros:

Tzatziki sauce:
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 regular cucumber, peeled and seeded
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
Extra virgin olive oil

Shred (I use a cheese grater; a food processor would work too) the peeled and seeded cucumber.  Squeeze out the excess water (I put mine in a paper towel to squeeze it).  Combine with the other ingredients and drizzle with EVOO. Prepare the night before for best flavor.

For the chicken:
2 teaspoons minced garlic
Juice of 1 lemon (2-3 Tablespoons)
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 heaping Tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
1 Tablespoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper
1 1/4 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl, then add chicken to marinade.  Let sit overnight for best flavor.

Cook the chicken however you'd like (skillet, broiler, grill, etc).  Cut into strips.  Serve on a pita (pictured with a high fiber tortilla, I LOVE them) with tzatziki sauce and diced tomatoes and onion (red is best, I had yellow, whatever).

For an even better low carb option, and how I usually eat this dish, serve as a salad over baby spinach and use the tzatziki as a dressing.  It's delicious!  I only ate this tonight in a tortilla because I was too lazy to go to the grocery store for spinach, and broccoli just didn't sound appetizing with it (and remember, this is a LOW carb life, not NO carb).

Last night's cooking (when I was preparing everything for tonight, as well as last night's dinner) was quite an adventure for my poor hands.  I made spaghetti sauce for dinner, and as I was draining the fat from the meat, I managed to spray it all over my left hand.  Needless to say, it still hurts.  Then as I was grating the cucumber, I thought it might taste delicious to add some skin from my right thumb.... It's the first time I've bled since moving to Texas, and probably the most profusely I've bled in years, and I couldn't find a stupid band aid.  But I did have paper towel and medical tape... totally the same thing, right?  And not annoying at all.  But the spaghetti was delicious (served with veggie pasta, noms), as well as the gyros, so I guess it was worth the sacrifice.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

One Mile

I ran a mile, I ran a mile, I ran a mile, hey hey hey hey!

I got on the treadmill today, and said to myself "today is the day" and BOOM!  One mile down.  I walked for a few minutes after the mile and then was able to jog for another five minutes.  It felt good.  Sort of.  Right now I feel incredible.  When I completed the mile I thought I might be having a heart attack, and I wish I was joking.  Thankfully I recovered fairly quickly so I was able to continue jogging.

It gives me hope that this C25k program really is working, and by the time I run the Color Me Rad 5k in December, I'll actually run it.  And it won't kill me.  That would be nice.

Also, the more I run, the more I have so much respect for those who run (and who like it).  I'd like to say that one day I'll keep up with Sakief on his frequent 6 milers, or could run a marathon like Ashleigh, but I don't think so.  Let's just stick with the 5k (maybe a 10k someday), and continue to admire those who kick my ass in running.

I spent the long weekend in Pensacola with Sakief, and it was wonderful!  He's healing really well, in fact, he was cleared to resume a normal diet today.  We did all of the typical things that we do, beach, eat, sleep, but this weekend was exceptionally nice.  I think we really got to make the most of our time together.  Hopefully it will hold me over the next four weeks until he's back in Austin for his birthday.

I did fairly well sticking to healthy foods this weekend, though not great.  Definitely better than when I was there a few weeks ago for his surgery.  Oy.  He did a lot of cooking for me, which I love for several reasons 1) he cooks 2) it's delicious 3) he tailors it to my low carb lifestyle (except the rice, but I do well at eating small portions of rice).

And in other very important news, I requested my absentee ballot from Florida today since I moved to Texas too late to be registered for the general election.  I don't care who you vote for, but get out and vote people!