Still going!

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They say nothing outlasts the Energizer… but I have to say I am rivaling it ūüėČ ¬†It took me 1 year and 1 week to lose the 100 lbs. I waited a little while and then on June 24,2017, ¬†I got my first tattoo!

my tattoo

Each of the stars represent 10 lbs lost (for a total of 100 lbs). ¬†I chose stars because of the song “Shooting Star” by Bad Company. ¬†The chorus goes:

Don’t you know, don’t you know, Don’t you know that you are
a shooting star,
Don’t you know, oh, yeah, Don’t you know that you are
a shooting star, yeah,
And all the world will love you just as long,
As long as you are, a shooting star.

This has a lot of meaning for me.  It tells me to aim high and I will go far as long as I keep trying.  Never give up.  I think this really defines me.  I have been noticed for my tenacity at work and with friends.  Some people may see my determination as stubbornness, but I think it is more positive than that.  It has helped me lose the 100 lbs in 1 year and 1 week!

The tattoo did not hurt as badly as I thought it would. ¬†The topmost star hurt the most but other than it, it was more of a mild pain but I could deal with it. Of course now this opens the possibility for other tattoos.. but they would have to have special meeting for me.. I wouldn’t get one just to get one!

I am still on my weight loss journey. ¬†Since the 2nd week in May, I have been stuck at 103 lbs lost. ¬†Getting the tattoo meant that I wasn’t allowed to swim for 2-4 weeks, so I have not been to water aerobics or Aqua Zumba (I go back starting this Wednesday and I am very excited about that.) ¬†I am actually thinking about doing another 24 day challenge through Advocare to kickstart my metabolism again. ¬†I probably will not lose 24 lbs in 24 days this time because when I first started it last year I weighed more and I was giving up things I had never gave up before like Coke. ¬†Now I haven’t had a coke in about 14 months. ¬†Amazingly I have not craved it. ¬†Thankfully, I did not go through caffeine withdrawal. ¬†I still have an Advocare Spark every weekday that I am at work and it has a lot of caffeine. ¬†I think that has helped.

I am still following my new year’s resolution and trying to be more positive about life in general. ¬†It has really helped me to be a happier person in general. ¬†I am also attempting to be more social. ¬†I have attended so many concerts this year and it was has been so much fun. ¬†I have reconnected with old friends and made new friends.. these are things I have not done in ages! I got back into supporting local music which has been a lot of fun. ¬†I have taken on more responsibilities at work too. ¬†Good things are happening all around!

I will continue to update my blog as time goes on. ¬†I actually haven’t set a goal as to how much weight I want to lose but I will know when I reach it ūüôā for now ¬†I am just going to keep going!

1 year later

1-year-12-months2

Hey everyone!  So I started my weight loss journey on May 1, 2016.  Yesterday was one year later.  It is by no means over, but it is important to celebrate the anniversary of my new life.  Unfortunately I did not lose the 100 lbs that I wanted to.  As of May 1 2017, I have lost 98.5 lbs.  This is not a setback.  Losing that much weight took hard work and dedication.  When I hit the 100 lb lost mark, I still plan on getting a tattoo to remind me of the hard work and pain so I will never gain any of the weight back.

measuring-tape

I wanted to share the measurements I lost with you.  Normally I would just add all these together and give a total, but I am proud of each individual measurement:

I lost 12 inches around my chest

I lost 11.5 inches around my waist

I lost 13 inches around my hips

Normally I am not a person who likes to brag.  I am actually a shy person who will blush (but still enjoy) when receiving a compliment.   This weight loss is the probably the biggest thing I have achieved in my life.  I would venture to say that it is right up there with getting my two Bachelor of Science Degrees (in Information Technology and Web Development)  It is definitely the most personal thing I have achieved in my life.  So when I post my victories on Facebook or in this blog, I hope no one thinks I am bragging just to brag.

how

Many people have asked how I did it. ¬†If you have read through my previous blogs, you know some of the steps I took. ¬†But first I want to say, I do not believe in diets. ¬†There are no fad diets that will help you lose weight and keep it off. ¬† ¬†That being said, I started my weight loss journey last May by doing the 24 day Advocare Challenge. ¬† It involved buying a bunch of supplements and eating very little for 24 days. ¬†I ended up losing 24 lbs in 24 days. ¬†After that, I added back in more foods but gave up pop entirely. ¬†I actually thought that was going to be the hardest thing to do but oddly, I have had no cravings for Coca Cola which was my favorite drink and in fact usually the ONLY drink I had. ¬†I think what helped me is I fell in love with sparkling and seltzer flavored waters. ¬† I cut my calories down to 1200-1400 a day. ¬† Some days I do go over that and that is because I do not limit myself. ¬†If I am craving ice cream, I will go to Dairy Queen but I will pay attention to the calorie content and get the lowest on the menu ¬†(usually a small Arctic cherry freeze(with the ice cream blended in.) ¬†If I am craving chips, I have some. ¬†I see my friends and relatives who are dieting, restrict themselves and then when they have a “cheat” day they go all out and it can be hard to come back from that. ¬†I have had cheat days where I go to an all you can eat pizza place with family or where I have pasta. ¬†But i find that even on my cheat days, I do not go crazy because I haven’t limited myself other days. ¬†Other stuff I have done to lose weight is attend Water Aerobics every Monday and Aqua Zumba every Tuesday. ¬†On the in between days, I try to work out at home by riding my stationary bike, lifting weights or doing crunches on my bosu ball.

feeling-good

I feel great! ¬†I feel like me again. ¬†I am able to do things I have not done in years. ¬†I love going to concerts. ¬†I used to limit myself on how many I could go to based on what my body allowed me to do without giving out. ¬†Now I can go to any concert I want to and not worry about the seating situation or how far I have to walk. ¬† I used to love to support my friends in local bands but I would worry about what kind of seats they would have (if any) and if I went, I definitely couldn’t do any kind of dancing. ¬† ¬†Now I have just go with no worries and I have even had fun dancing a few times like I used to. ¬†I know this is just going to get better.. Hey maybe in another ¬†year I will be able to ice skate again…. that would be awesome! ¬†Also, my new year’s resolution was to be more positive. ¬†I think that is definitely helping. ¬†I feel happier and more at peace. ¬†I still have times where I over think things, but who doesn’t?

Life isn’t perfect but it is getting there.

My Christmas blog

xmas

Merry Christmas everyone! Joyeux Noel! Feliz Navidad! ¬†I thought this was a good time to write another blog. ¬†I do have good news. ¬†I was stuck for a long time at the same weight. ¬†I was patient and kept working out and counting my calories and it is starting to pay off. ¬†As of this morning, I¬†have now lost 82.1 lbs since May 1! ¬†I don’t think I am going to make my original goal which was to lose 100 lbs by the end of the year. ¬†With just a week left in 2016, that is probably impossible now, but I am still proud of my progress.

yayme

Holidays can be an especially hard time to maintain or lose weight. ¬†It seems every corner you turn around, there is a plate of cookies or candy. ¬†One thing that I have found is that is ok to “cheat” on your diet every now and then. ¬†Don’t beat yourself up. ¬†If you cannot enjoy the good things in life, what’s the point of living? ¬†ūüôā ¬†As long as you are not pigging out every single day, a treat every now and then is not going to sabotage any hard work you have done. ¬†I think the important thing is just to be aware of what you are consuming and make good choices.

I think it is also important to set goals. ¬†Keep in mind, however, that if you don’t meet your goal when you want to, it is very important not to give up. Not many people know this but I have decided when I do lose 100 lbs, I am going to get a wrist tattoo. ¬†I am scared of needles and never thought I would do anything like that. ¬†However, I never thought I could lose the weight like I did either. ¬†I think it’s a fitting “reward” to myself. ¬†I have an idea of the design I want but I will save that for a future blog when it actually happens ūüôā

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Anyway, this blog is just a short and sweet update.  I hope Santa brings you everything you want!  Merry Christmas!

Rough Month

candle-heart

So this has been a rough month for me. ¬†On August 20, my grandma passed away. ¬†It was unexpected so I did not a chance to prepare myself for it. ¬†At her funeral, the only thing that kept me going was holding the hand of my 4 yr old niece Ella. I didn’t think she would hold it for the entire time but she did. ¬†She even switched hands with me at one point so she could reach for her doll with the other hand.

ellaprek

I can’t show Ella without showing my other niece-6 yr old Eva. ¬†Here she is as a cat lady ūüôā

eva-cat-lady

To top it off,  my dad has been in the hospital.  He was in congestive heart failure and was retaining a lot of water. He ended up losing about 65 lbs in roughly 10 days and he came home yesterday.  He is weak but doing better.

On the good news side, ¬†so far I have lost 70.5 lbs since May 1. ¬†I realize that is only about 10 lbs in the last month, so it has definitely slowed down but I will take it! It’s been really hard this month to eat right.. I spent several days helping to clean out Grandma’s apartment and then helping my mom get things ready in her house for some of Grandma’s furniture. ¬†Plus I had to visit my dad at the hospital. ¬†On those days, ¬†I would eat fast food. I tried to be good and get a subway salad or something. ¬†But I did break down and have Chinese food with my mom. ¬†At the funeral, we had a luncheon at the church afterwards. ¬†Food was provided and it was everything I shouldn’t eat. ¬†Yummy things like spaghetti, mac and cheese, pasta salad and the best snickerdoodle cookies!. ¬†I did my best to eat very little of each thing I wanted!

I’ve settled back into a routine now and cooking at home more but next friday, my work is having the annual company picnic. ¬†Lunch is provided along with fair food that includes elephant ears, french fries, corn on the cob and donuts. ¬†I have been craving an elephant ear. ¬†I didn’t get one last year at the picnic because the lines were too long and I couldn’t stand for a long time. ¬†This year I will be able to walk around more and definitely stand in that line for an elephant ear. ¬†So that is going to be my cheat day for the week. ¬†I am already salivating for the elephant ear…..

mmmm.. elephant ear

ear

I was thinking about a few years ago when¬†I lost 50 lbs. No one commented on my weight loss. ¬†It seemed like no one noticed. ¬†However now, I have people who don’t even know my name approaching me in the hallway at work. ¬†So I¬†searched and I found an old pic from when I did a breast cancer walk at Ohio State University. ¬†This was in September 2013 and I was only 9 lbs more than I am right now. ¬†However I do not look it. ¬†I think I look a lot bigger. ¬†The only difference that I am doing now compared to then is the kind of exercise. ¬†The water aerobics and ¬†Aqua Zumba seem to be taking the weight off and shaping me. ¬†I measured myself at the end of August and I have lost 8 inches from my chest, 8 inches from my waist and 8 inches from my hips. ¬†So it is a very uniform loss. (pic below-on the left 3 years ago. ¬†On the right 3 days ago)

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Anyway. I am still working hard. ¬†I would like to lose at least another 10 lbs by my 25 year high school reunion on Oct 1 and I would like to lose 100 lbs by the end of the year! ¬†Let’s do this!

 

My ongoing journey

3 Days Journey-blank

Guess what everyone! I have now lost 60.6 lbs since May 1! ¬†I would like to tell you that it gets easier the longer you do it, but trying to be healthy is hard! There are so many choices to make and if you make the wrong one, it can throw off your whole day! ¬†For example, today at work, they provided us with a free “make your own salad” bar. ¬†I decided since I only brought a chicken salad wrap for lunch, and I am going to Aqua Zumba after work, to go get some. ¬†I got lettuce, carrots, a couple of croutons, some nuts and Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing. ¬†The only other dressing they had was Ranch, so the one I chose was the better of the two. ¬†I got back to my desk and looked up the calories of the dressing and it was 100 calories for 1 oz. ¬†The ones I usually eat range from 35-60 for 1 oz!

salad

Another decision I had to make occurred yesterday. ¬†A friend is in town that I haven’t seen in a while so I was going to get together with her and some other friends and go to dinner. ¬†They decided on Olive Garden. ¬†Now on my birthday, I splurged and let myself have regular pasta without any bad consequences but I was trying to stay away from Italian restaurants in general. ¬†So I looked up the menu and decided to get the Rosemary Garlic chicken and a side of pasta. ¬†The salad was good and the side of pasta was good.. in fact it probably had too many calories for me! ¬†But I will tell you now: ¬†NEVER get the Rosemary Garlic chicken. ¬†It is so gross!! Not only does it taste nothing like Rosemary or Garlic (it had more of a Balsamic flavor), but the texture was rubbery and had a bunch of chewy gristle pieces in it. ¬†Nothing nauseates me more than biting into a chewy gristle-y piece of chicken. ¬†That was the only thing on the menu that wasn’t 700+ calories (except for fish, which I do not eat).

I made a good decision last Friday.  My mom had to take my dad to the doctor and since they were out already decided to meet me for dinner at Los Jalapenos.  I brought my own low carb wraps that are only 50 calories each and only ate 2.  It was so good!

I have found that if I buy snacks for my house such as potato chips or even flavored almonds, I eat them until they are gone. ¬†But if I don’t have them at home and just eat them at parties, etc, I only eat few. ¬†I am going to have to make sure I do not buy anything that will tempt me. It feels like it took a lot longer to lose the last 10 lbs then it did the first 50. ¬†Doctors, friends and relatives all tell me that I will slow down and not lose the weight as fast as I did at first. ¬†But I WANT to!! ¬†So I am going to keep pushing for it!

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Another bad habit I need to break is weighing myself. ¬†I have started weighing myself every day several times a day and obsessing over it. ¬†I need to just weigh myself once a week! ¬†that way I will give the water aerobics and Aqua Zumba time to work ūüôā

Luckily the shots in my back seem to have worked. ¬†I still have pain but it is nowhere near what it used to be and I am able to move around a little more. ¬†I actually went to the grocery store the other day and walked around pushing a cart. ¬†I haven’t done that in about a year! I was using the Giant Eagle delivery service where they bring it to your car. ¬†I will still do that because it is convenient but it is nice knowing I CAN walk around if I need to.

I am still drinking the Advocare shakes for breakfast and Spark in the morning. ¬†It is so expensive. ¬†The shakes come in a box of 14 for $44.95. ¬†I usually do not eat them on the weekends so that comes out to be ¬†$180 a month (roughly) for breakfast. ¬†So if anyone wants to donate to my cause, I won’t say no ūüôā

Ok it’s time to keep on keepin’ on!

 

Over halfway to my first goal

C: 2010 --  July.

Happy summer everyone!! ¬†(no that’s not my dog in the pic above.. I think Bree would be way too scared to swim. I think Axel would like it though(he’s a Yorkie.) So my summer has been going pretty well. ¬†I celebrated my birthday this past Saturday. ¬†We went to Buca di Beppo’s and I had a cheat day. ¬†It felt so good to have pasta and then a piece of birthday cake!! ¬†The amazing thing is, I weighed myself the next morning and so far, since May 1, I have lost 54.8 lbs!! ¬† My first goal is 100 lbs so I am more than halfway there in less than 3 months. ¬†I hope hope hope I can continue at this rate!

Below is a picture I made. ¬† On the left is me on 7/17/15 and on the right is me 7/16/16. ¬†I am wearing the same outfit in both pics.. I hope this shows that I am going in the right direction ūüôā

me 1yr and 2 days

 

Last thursday, my boss bought a cake to celebrate the July birthday and they bought a fruit plate for me! I thought that was so nice. It was hard to resist the cake because it looked so good, but I knew I was having cake on Saturday so i resisted.

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Last Wednesday I got my second set of epidural shots in my back. ¬†I think/hope it is ¬†helping. ¬†I am able to stand longer and walk further, but my legs still aren’t strong enough for long walks. ¬†That is why I have been swimming a lot and doing water aerobics. ¬†I may even try Aqua¬†Zumba this week!

aqua zumba

I’ve been trying to stay around 1100 calories per day. ¬†Some days it is less than that. ¬†Even on my cheat day (my birthday), it was only at 1600 calories. ¬†So hopefully I can continue this journey and reach the other half of my goal by this fall!

 

My life

Hello everyone. ¬†It’s been a while since I blogged, so I thought I would share the¬†continuing saga that is my life ūüôā

Last Thursday I had steroid injections in my back.  It involved putting a giant needle in my back.

 

'No no!! Not that one... The BIG one on the top shelf!!'

When the nurse was prepping me, she had me lay on the table on my stomach and pulled my pants down, exposing my butt as she prepped my lower back. ¬†The doctor walked in and said “Are you ready for this?” ¬†and I said “I have assumed the position.” ¬†He thought it was funny. ¬†As they injected the steroids, there was a lot of pain and then afterward, I felt stiff and numb. ¬†I think it has helped though. ¬†I no longer feel the bad pain in my lower back, but now I feel the pain that is in the rest of my back!

Friday, my mom and I went to the grand opening of the Tanger Outlet Mall in Sunbury, Ohio and I got to meet the Property Brothers! (from HGTV)

I don’t think I could’ve walked all around the mall without the back injection that I had. ¬†That day, according to my fitbit, I walked around 2.4 miles!

One thing that is really important is the choices made when eating out.   At the mall, my mom wanted Starbucks, so I asked for water.   She ended up bringing me a strawberries and cream frappacino (no coffee in it).  They made it with skim milk and the whole thing was about 350 calories.

strawberry

Let me tell you.. it was soo good. ¬†I haven’t had ice cream or any cold treats in so long and after being in the hot sun all day, this was really good! ¬†Later that day, I had a Panera chicken and strawberry poppyseed salad for dinner. ¬† Then a few days later, my friend wanted to go to O’charley’s. ¬†There is nothing on the menu (unless you like fish which I do not) that is low in calories. ¬†Even the salads have¬†crazy amounts of calories, etc. ¬†Finally i found that any hamburger can be switched out for a grilled chicken breast. ¬† So I got a cajun hamburger but subbed the chicken breast and ate it without the cheese and bread with a side salad. ¬† I was proud of myself for finding something that I can eat.

Scale

This morning I weighed myself and I have lost 42.9 lbs since May 1. ¬†Let’s hope that momentum keeps going!!

Bye for now!