Goals Update

Yesterday I was interviewed by a journalist who asked me about my goals. It got me thinking that I haven’t looked at my goals since I wrote them way back in 2012 so I dug out the post. You can read it here. Sorry… it was back when the blog was really notes on Facebook!

So when I first ready through the post, I actually laughed a lot. It was posted on September 2, 2012 and what a difference 9 months will make. Wow!

The post was really about me trying to think of short and long term goals for myself. I remember how hard it was back then (it wouldn’t be now). Back then I focused only on the weight loss (scale) and now I wish I focused on the non-scale victories too!

I wanted to lose 2 pounds a week for 8-10 a month. Looking back, that was an ok number and (for the most part) I was somewhere in that nature most of the time. I’m creeping up on the 70 mark so I’m doing pretty good – but I now know the scale does not define my success.

I set milestone goals for myself

  • 25 pounds – spa treatment
  • 50 pounds mini shopping spree
  • 75 pounds – enter a race
  • 100 pounds – trip to the beach with a new bathing suit!
  • Goal Weight – Disney Marathon

Now, if you’ve been following my blog for a while you’ll know why I’m laughing at myself! I didn’t want to wait for the milestone goals, I just did it anyways.

At 25 pounds, I skipped the spa and hired a trainer (money well spent). At 50 pounds, I didn’t have a shopping spree because I needed them every few months because I was dropping sizes like mad (seven sizes to date). I was still 300 pounds in October when I entered my race so screw waiting for 75!

Now … 100 pounds. I’m still hopeful I might get to the beach this summer but our house hunt may change that plan. We simply may not have the funds / vacation time to pull it off. I’m ok with that though because it doesn’t mean I don’t deserve something – like say a new swimsuit which I’m totally getting this year! For the first time in my life I’m very excited to go swimsuit shopping and have been looking around at the styles to see what I like!

Now the biggie! Goal weight. I don’t think I want to wait for this one either. My hope is that next year (probably around this time), I’ll be packing up my kid and husband and trekking to Disney to run a marathon. I don’t care how much I weigh, I’m going to do it anyways! Let’s just hope I can afford it – that’s the only thing that will stop me!

So back in my blog post I wrote that my game plan was to go to the gym before work (that didn’t happen – work schedule conflict). I originally planned to walk at lunch with coworkers (That didn’t happen either). I simply had too much work to do and opted to plow through a quick lunch and go to the gym after work. That part I’m pretty good with (most of the time). I’d say given my current plate of things I’ve really mastered making working out part of my life.

So as I sit and reflect on the me 9 months ago, I’m reminded of just how far I came. What a difference almost a year can make in a person and in a family. I’m so happy the journalist asked me about my goals. I might not have dug them out to continue being inspired by my own self. Who knew I was inspiring!


The Biggest Winner Day 24: The end

Well here we are – the end of the training program. I can’t believe six weeks flew by so quickly!

I can’t even begin to tell you how important these past six weeks have been for me. I have taken my weight loss to an entirely new level and it’s all thanks to six amazing people – Jackson, Tianda, Steve, Shawn, John and De2013-02-15 07.48.49bbie. You don’t know them, but you have no idea how much they inspire me.

As a grand finale of his own, Jackson had us run a 5K on the treadmill to get started. I completed mine in under 48 minutes!  A new record for me. I’m so proud of this accomplishment. When I did my first 5K it was just under 54 minutes – LOOK HOW FAR I’VE COME!

More importantly, when I did the first 5K I was useless the rest of the day with aches and pains. Today, I hopped off the treadmill and Jackson sent us to the gym to do more! MORE!!!!!!

Once we finished our run, Jackson had a circuit ready for us as his own little last chance workout before we finished the competition. Oh boy was it hard! I felt horrible but I finished and that’s what matters.  

Today’s workout included: 2013-02-15 08.07.25

  • Broad jumps full court across the gym and back.
  • 50 jumping jacks
  • 50 squats
  • 40 Bosu stepper (that’s that half ball I never know the name of)
  • 40 high knees
  • 30 medicine ball slams
  • 30 push ups
  • 20 super mains
  • 20 single leg bridges
  • 20 burpees
  • 20 jumping lunges

…. and a partridge in a pear tree. Oh wait! Nevermind.


In case your wondering, yes I felt like death at the end. In fact, at one point I actually felt dizzy and needed to rest but I still finished.

So there you have it – six weeks of training 4 times a week for a total of 24 sessions. I’m confident that every single body part has hurt at least once or twice. I’ve been exhausted, drenched in sweat, tired, cranky and even sick – but I wouldn’t trade a minute of it!

My team means the world to me. From Shawn who always had something funny to say in his silly complaining way, to Tianda who gives me inspiration and the nickname bikini girl after her dream, to Debbie who always walked and talked with me on our off days. Each of you meant so much to me and I hope you know it (if you’re reading this). Steve and John, I’m so happy we’re Facebook friends – you guys are the best. I loved our talks and your encouragement too!

Of course, I’m not going to forget the one person that means the world to me (in my life of exercise) and that’s Jackson. I know I tell him just how happy I am to work with him, but I hope he knows just how much he’s done for me. He pushes me out of my comfort zone, he challenges me to do more and he never EVER lets me quit. I owe a lot of pounds to him. I’m so thankful to have met him and I can’t wait to see what he does with me over the next year.

While this is the end of the competition, it’s certainly not the end of my journey. The future looks bright and shining and I’m going to get there!

The Biggest Winner Day 15: Oh so many push-ups

The theme of today was push ups and OMG there were sooooooo many of them.

Let’s start at the beginning though. I walked out of the house late, which means I didn’t get to the gym early to warm up. I was kinda bummed. But life goes on.

We started out doing a short circuit. I started on the treadmill for about 5 minutes walking at 3.0 with a 7% incline and holding a kettle bell.

Next I went to the TRX ropes to do one leg lunges (I don’t know what they’re actually called). Another five minutes.

Finally, it was five minutes on the rope pull alternating every 30 seconds with step ups.

Whew! That was quite the warm up.

Next we headed to the studio for a circuit. This was truly a cardio insanity workout. I can’t even list everything we did because I don’t think I remember it all. I just remember a lot of push ups. At least 5 sets of them … oh so many push ups.

Also in the mix somewhere were jumping jacks, burpees, squats, high knees, kicks and planks.

This went on for what felt like hours, but really it was more like 30 minutes. Drenched, we finished out in the gym with another circuit. I started on the rowing machine with sprints, then we moved to the nu step using only the arms and the last machine was the arc trainer but I never got there before we ran out of time.

I went back to the gym tonight to do Zumba. I’m not sure why, but I just wasn’t into it tonight. I think I’m really that exhausted or just … I don’t know.

Tomorrow is our last day of the week. I’m sure Jackson will push us harder than ever. I think we’re going to be taking the weekend to rest. I know I need it!

In other news, tomorrow I’m going shopping with some friends to find the perfect finale outfit. I’m shooting for a dress, but open to other options. We’ll just see where the wind blows me.

90 minute challenge

Yesterday Jackson challenged us to do 90 minutes of cardio today on our off day from the training program. Now some2967_521985621177322_1319337831_n of you probably are thinking – that’s nothing! Your right … unless you’re still over 250 pounds, having your ass kicked 4 days a week and pretty much feel like jello 24/7. But I’m doing it anyways!

Some of you may have seen my post last night as I pondered how to do 90 minutes of cardio. I’m a big fan of variety so I figured I’d switch machines every 15 – 20 minutes.

When I got to the gym, I planned to start with my least favorite piece of equipment – the treadmill (you were waiting to see the spin bike weren’t you?). From there it was all PROGRESS!

Here’s how my morning went –

  • 20 Minutes on the treadmill walking at 3.5 – 5.0 with varying inclines.
  • 10 minutes on the arc trainer with varying incline and resistance.
  • 25 minutes on the bike (NOT AN EVIL SPIN BIKE) with random hills at level 4 keeping RPMs above 100 as much as possible.
  • 25 minutes on the elliptical on variety (various inclines / resistance)

Per that data … I would have 80 minutes of activity. However, my Body Media Band says a little differently. One of the reasons I love my band is that I can truly see what I’m doing. For example, here’s what data I collected after my workout.

Workout Burn
1,104 Calories Burned just during the workout.

Burn for the day so far

Remaining Burn to Target
759 (I’ll have that before the end of the day at work).

Steps During Workout

Total Step Count for the day so far
 10,762 (Oh I’m so crushing my personal best of 14,000 today!) – Over 2,762 from my target SO FAR! 

Workout Activity Levels
60 minutes moderate activity
30 minutes of vigorous activity
*it counts the time between machines. My 80 minutes above only counts what I did on the machines. 

Total Activity for the Day so far 
1 hour and 17 minutes of moderate activity (47 minutes over target)
30 minutes of vigorous activity (15 minutes over target) 

So if you read that… you know I kicked ass today! I’m really proud of myself. I was soaked in sweat by the end of the workout and very proud of my accomplishments. It’s a good day and I’m very happy with myself.

The Biggest Winner: Day 2

Today I have a new respect for my body. After running through the fitness tests on Monday, Tuesday just brought unimaginable pain – but in a good way.

Some of you may recall my post from Facebook last night. I swore our trainer was home plotting his own little dungeon like Dolvett did on the Biggest Loser. Jackson is so much like him it’s scary!

As suggested, I arrived at the gym about 20 minutes early. This gave me a chance to put my things away and hop on some machines for a quick warm up. I did about 7 minutes on the elliptical and then another 7 minutes stretching to get nice and warm. As I was warming up, I watched Jackson set up his own little dungeon (I knew he would) in the gym. First he went past with kettle bells, then bars, medicine balls and a ladder rope. Oh boy…

One of the things I love about Jackson is he’s very prompt. We start at 7 a.m. on the dot (or even early) and he works us until 8 a.m. or even after. He was like that as my personal trainer too. He commits to give you every minute you pay for and I love that about him! There’s no slacking off!

We started with a circuit and partners alternating from strength to cardio. We would eventually do 3 sets of everything. For the strength – it was rows and dead lifts with the bar. Next it was squats, press and triceps with hand weights and then lunges and curls with the kettle bells. When we were on the strength training, we were on the cardio with the rope ladder doing three different running drills. One of the guys in my group said it best… “These are running back moves… we’re a bunch of linemen.” I love my group – they’re really great.

I was paired with Deb today. She’s really nice. I got to know her a little bit more as we worked together. As partners, Jackson was relying on us to inspire each other. She’s a sweet lady and I’m happy I got to work with her.

After the first circuit of drills, we moved to the next circuit. This time it was medicine balls thrown into the floor (my favorite anger management exercise), triceps push ups off some stand thingy (oh my god the pain) and then crunches with our legs up in the air and reaching with another medicine ball (more pain). We took turns with our partner encouraging and doing and then repeating.

After the two circuits, which took the majority of the time. Jackson spent the last 10 minutes focusing on stretching. I think it’s good he incorporates this to make sure we’re all adequately stretched at the end of the work out.

According to my band, I had approximately over 900 calories burned during the workout (though I will verify this later when I can get it on the computer). Unfortunately, that’s the one downfall of the band. When it syncs to bluetooth, it doesn’t go to the web. I’m kinda bummed by that. I thought it would go back and forth. At least I can see it while it’s happening and dissect it later.

So as I sit here eating my lunch, I can tell you today I have a new level of respect for my body. There were many points (mostly during the triceps push ups) that I felt like death but I kept going. Today, I hurt in places I didn’t even know I could hurt but that’s a good thing. I know I did something today and I’m very proud of myself.

Tomorrow is our off day. I haven’t decided what I want to do. Part of me wants to stop at the Total Body Sculpt class and pick up some extra calorie burn or maybe just go for a run. The other half of me is saying … STOP … REST… RECOVER before Thursday (which is sure to be a killer) kicks into gear. I guess we’ll see what happens tomorrow.

In other news, given my trainers love of weight lifting I believe I need to make a trip to the store tonight and to get some gloves. I really don’t want icky, rough hands and it’ll likely help with my grip. I think I’ll buy an armband for my phone so I can also listen to music. I’ve been meaning to get one of those but haven’t had a chance to hunt for one big enough for the droid.

I’m losing my bingo arms!

Well, now that I have your attention – I simply had to use that as my headline since that’s what my (loving) husband told inspirationme tonight … not once, but twice.

It’s been a very interesting day in the life of me. Work was great – a very productive day. I left at 2:30 pm to go to my 3 p.m. Physical Therapy evaluation for my knee. My therapist and doctor are both extremely optimistic that my knee will heal with therapy so (fingers crossed). Thankfully, I’m doing therapy at my gym so it’s works for everything else I need to do. Therapy ended at about 4 p.m. and I headed over to meet with the director of the personal training department who was kind enough to give me time to come up with the money for the Biggest Winner competition. We chatted for a while about various topics and I really enjoyed meeting with her.

Next up was my nutrition appointment with Jackie (who I adore) – if you’re keeping track… I’ve already been at the gym for 2 hours at this point. I know I’m doing a great job with my eating habits, but having Jackie there by my side for questions and guidance is sure great. I don’t know what I’d do without her.

During my nutrition appointment, Jackie mentioned that I should come to her Drop 10 in 10 class and talk sometime because she thought I’m such an inspiration and motivational speaker. I was shocked and honored honestly. Ironically, the class was meeting tonight (at 6 p.m.) for the last time until next year. Well – no time like the present! After our appointment,  I grabbed a 30 minute workout and then headed over to the class.

Love meIt’s really funny. I never set out to be an inspiration to other people, it just sort of happened naturally. Now that I’ve been blogging and sharing my story, I guess i can sort of see how people have taken an interest in my life. I have a great story and I’m a natural story-teller so it all works.

So I stuck around tonight for the meeting and Jackie gave me a few minutes to just tell my story – and that’s exactly what I did. The women, who I’m guessing were all older than me, seemed genuinely interested in my story. They had questions and I did my best to have answers. I wasn’t really prepared, but it truly felt natural and honestly – I loved it.

Tonight was another step on my journey to changing my life and I’m realizing more and more that while my body has ultimately changed, it’s my whole self that has made the change. I truly believe that’s the true battle of weight loss. It’s a mindset you have to commit to and when you do, the rest will change with it.

Sure, I’ve become a bit obsessive with my weight loss and staying on track but it’s all for the good of my health. The real me is finally emerging and I’m truly loving it!

Inspirational and Moving Day

Person i want to beToday has been a very moving day. Not only physically, but emotionally and it all started at the gym.

I woke up a little later than I wanted to, but I didn’t let that deter my trip to the gym this morning. I was shooting to arrive for 8:30 or 9 and I actually arrived at 9:15 a.m. I didn’t have a plan, but more so just wanted to run with whatever my body was feeling. Sometimes, those kind of days produce the best workouts.

I started on the elliptical machine (one of my favorites) with a quick warm up and then 10 minutes of solid running. I had my headphones on and I was just going to town. It may sound silly, but when I have my music on …. I feel empowered. I’ve loaded my workout list with songs I love to dance to at Saddle Ridge and other high-energy pop tunes. When these songs come on, I really take myself to a new level imaging how happy I’ll be when I can dance without pain and without worry of how I look.

Never Too LateSo I was going about my workout when 30 minutes in, a lady came over and stopped me. Apparently she’d been watching me go to town on the elliptical and weights and was just so inspired by me. We chatted for a bit and she hopped on the machine next to me and told me about what she’s going through. I offered up some of the things I learned and gave her my contact information.

To be honest, I really never thought I was an inspiring individual but apparently my story is reaching more people than I realize. I don’t think I’m doing anything special, but this journey has been very special to me. It’s truly touching to see how total strangers react to me and my journey.

After the gym, I head up to the store to grab a few things. I took those home and then picked up Arabella. We had a date to pick out a Pillow Pet for our angel tree tag. We try to be good parents and I know we can’t to much, but I can certainly spare a few dollars to ensure some other child has a toy on Christmas morning.

This year, we’ve actually done a two gift programs. The first was sponsored by my daughters preschool where they had a giving tree. Each of the tags on the tree were not for toys, but food and other household items. The tags were meant for seniors in the area and homeless people who were desperately in need of simple things. Because of the nature of the items (and my stockpile of coupons), we let Bella select two. Her choices were Coffee Creamer and Kitty Litter.

This was several weeks ago so when the angel trees started popping up, we selected a tag from the gym. Bella’s tag was a 7 year old girl who wanted a pillow pet. It was a perfect gift for Bella to pick out at the store. So we headed up to Walmart armed with the tag. The bin for the Pillow Pets were overflowing with styles and Bella dug (and I mean literally) to the bottom to select the only multi-colored bear in the lot. She simply HAD to have it.

While so many parents will just grab a toy off the shelf and attach the tag, the entire process of picking out the toy was very special to us today. I talked to Bella a lot about why we were doing this and how it’s very important. While she kept asking what the little girl’s name was, I think she’s finally starting to understand. While she dug in the bin, she kept telling me she wanted to find the “perfect” animal for this little girl. With her love of unicorns, I thought that’s actually what she would go after immediately but she had her own agenda.

In the end, my little girl was happy with her choice. We purchased the animal and dropped it off at the gym so they could take it the center to wrap and present to the family. I know it’s not much, but it feels great to know at least one other little girl will have a happier Christmas because my daughter dug to the bottom of the bin in a quest for the perfect pillow pet. I hope she likes it, wherever she is.

It’s strange, although I’m on the journey to change my health – there is so much more in my life that has changed. I don’t look at things the same way, and I don’t just mean the food labels. My outlook towards my family and my entire life and being has changed as a result of the changes to my food and exercise habits. So many things I never thought possible are coming true and things that just “existed” in my life now have a purpose.

This weight loss journey is bigger than just pounds lost on a scale. I’m truly changing my entire life, my husband’s life and most importantly – my daughter’s life because through all the hard work Bella will have her mommy healthier, happier, longer and able to do everything she ever dreams!

For those that follow and see me as inspiring, thank you! I hope you realize how much your messages and following touch my heart. I hope it inspires you to make your own changes and see your life move to a better place.