1 year later

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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.

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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.

Life after the Advocare Challenge

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Well, I discovered something about myself this weekend.   I cannot stand being at a country bar!  My cousin is moving to Florida in a few weeks so he had a going away party that started at Quaker Steak and Lube.

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I had never been there before and let me just say the food was really really good!  I had  the small portion of their Grilled boneless wings with Buckeye BBQ sauce and a side salad with Italian dressing.  The menu was full of things that the old me would’ve eaten in a heart beat (such as Buffalo Chicken Mac and Cheese.)  The people I was with got Nachos and loaded french fries as appetizers.  I had 3 nacho chips with chicken and jalapenos on them(I stayed away from the cheese)  and I had one plain french fry (I don’t like all the loaded stuff anyway.)  So I didn’t feel left out or limited in what I was eating.  Afterward we all went to a country bar called Tequila Cowboy.

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When I first walked in, I thought it was O.K.  It wasn’t too crowded and the noise of people talking covered up the music playing in the background.  There was a mechanical bull in the corner and it was fun to watch people ride that.  I tried to sit on one of their stools and was unable to.  Because I have knee and leg problems, I do not have the ability to hop up on a stool anymore.   My cousin found a short chair for me.  It was very embarrassing sitting in a short chair between all the high stools.  Then a live band began playing.  That is when I realized that my hatred for country music was going to outweigh any love I have for my family and hanging out with my cousins.   I tried to entertain myself by watching the middle aged women dance horribly to the music but then people stood directly in front of me and I couldn’t see anything.  I then tried to entertain myself on my phone but even that became boring.  I think I lasted about 2 1/2 hours and then my cousin Brian said he was going upstairs to some pool tables.  I turned to my other cousin Megan and asked “Do we need to still be here?”  She agreed so after checking out the karaoke bar WannaB’s which is attached, we left.  She promised to come  pick up my cousin Brian when the bar closed.  I had never been happier to get into my car and turn on Sirus Satellite radio on the Hair Nation channel.  I sang the loudest I could to “Love Song” by Tesla and I had my cousin Megan laughing at me the entire time.  At least, now I know that any time someone invites me a country bar again, I can say “No!”

So the next day I weighed myself in the morning and found that I have now lost 29 lbs since May 1!!

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So I am happy to say I am still on track and will keep on keepin’ on 🙂

Day 23 of the Advocare 24 day Challenge

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Day 23! I am almost at the end!  Tomorrow is the last day of my challenge!  I haven’t posted on here since last Thursday because this weekend was my music festival Rock on the Range!

It was a lot of fun, and a lot of being wet and cold from the rain.  One thing I did was make sure to make good choices when it came to eating.  I had made chicken salad with chicken and light miracle whip and I ate that on a 9 grain wrap with Chia on Friday morning and Saturday morning for breakfast. For lunch, I snuck in a granola bar and then I waited until I got home each night around 11pm and had pulled chicken and a salad for dinner.  The only thing I messed up was mount of water I have to drink.  I didn’t drink as much water because I did not want to keep running to the bathroom during the concert.   Plus water was $5 a bottle.  Sunday was my relaxation day.  Normally I would go to the concert that day too but my friend and I didn’t like any of the bands playing that day so we sold our tickets for that day.  I just relaxed all day.

Monday I was also off work and I decided to try water aerobics with some friends.  This was fun but not what I expected.  I have never taken an aerobics class but when I was younger, I did take Jazzercise.  I was expected a little less dancing than Jazzercise, but something like that in water.  Instead, when we first got there, they had us walking round and round this small area of the pool designated as a lazy river.  We would walk one way several times and then switch and walk against the pool of the water.  Then we out in the regular area of the pool and were given a foam barbell.

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My friends and I joked that the barbells looked like a smaller version of what the American Gladiators used to knock each other off pedestals

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During the aerobics, the instructor had us using the barbell for strength exercises in our arms, backs and sides.  Then we got a pool noodle and did some more exercises using that.  It was a full workout and today I am feeling the muscles I used! It was fun though and I think I am going to go back tomorrow and do it again.

Speaking of tomorrow, since it is  my last day of the challenge, I will be meeting with my coach to find out what the next step in my process will be.  I am scared and excited to see what he has to say.

Today’s recipe:  http://www.momontimeout.com/2015/06/sriracha-almond-crusted-chicken-strips/

The finish line is in sight!

Day 17 of the Advocare 24 day challenge

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Day 17.  Boy am I tired!  One thing I have noticed by keeping track of everything is that on Wednesdays I am really tired.  Luckily tomorrow is my Friday.  I am off work Friday and Monday to go to a festival concert called Rock on the Range.  More info on that and how it will affect my diet later.

I have had a crick in my back (not my usual pain, this is extra) on the left side now for about 3 weeks.  Normally I can ignore it, but when I ride my recumbent bike, it comes me to stretch that out and now it is really bothering me.  That’s ok though.  I am not going to let this derail me from the task at hand.

Speaking of, i decided to weigh myself this morning.  I know I shouldn’t and I should wait until the end, but I wanted to know if a week into the Max phase, I had lost any more weight.  The answer is no and I was surprised at that.  Luckily, I haven’t gained any back.  So that weight should be gone for good! I did some research and I found that a lot of people seem to plateau their first week on the Max phase.  But then  usually they start losing again.  I hope that happens for me in the next 8 days!

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So the biggest question I get is what will I do in the future after the 24 day challenge is over?  When I started this, I just kept telling myself that I can do without Coke and snacks for 24 days.  In my head, I was going to go back to all the foods I love at the end.  But after reading more and seeing the results, I realize I cannot do that.  I am not going to limit myself AS much as I have during this challenge.  For example, I know right now that on Memorial Day I am going to have corn on the cob with some spray margarine on it.  I am going to eat my 99.4% fat free Orville Redenbacher  kettle corn popcorn as a snack sometimes.  I am going to have a Coke every now and then and most of all, in some way shape or form, I am going to have a small serving of noodles.  But I will continue to eat a salad for lunch.  I will have a small breakfast every day.  I will not eat empty calories just because I feel hungry(or bored.) I also will continue exercising.  I would like to lose 100 lbs in a year!!

Ok recipe of the day(i would make this without the extra cheese): http://www.kalynskitchen.com/2010/09/easy-recipe-for-baked-pesto-chicken.html

Just do it!

Day 15 of the Advocare 24 day challenge

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Day 15…and yes it is Monday.  I am having a serious craving attack for noodles so bad right now!  I was torturing my self by going to different food websites and looking at pictures of noodle dishes.  It only succeeded in making me hungrier! I am afraid my craving for noodles is going to derail me.  I found a wheat noodle dish at Noodle and Co. which is only 350 calories plus grilled chicken. I may have to get that soon.

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So far today I have had my Spark and my breakfast shake.  I will be eating lunch in roughly a half hour.  I brought shredded chicken and salad.  Tonight for dinner I am going out to eat with my cousin for his birthday.  I just have to make sure I look at the menu ahead of time and see that wherever we go has something I can eat.  It’s going to be weird being out to eat and only drinking water!

So this weekend, it took me several hours across Saturday and Sunday to put my recumbent bike together but I finally got it done Sunday night.  Then of course, I  noticed that the timer takes 2 AAA batteries, which I do not have.  You can use the bike without that though.  I got on the bike and I was able to pedal which is HUGE for me.  However, I could only do it for about 5 minutes before everything in my legs started hurting.  That is ok though, I will start with 5 minutes and just keep stepping it up until I am pedaling for 30 minutes!  Wish me luck!

This recipe looks so good and I have all the seasonings but thyme.  I wonder if that one matters that much.  Here it is:  http://www.galonamission.com/baked-cajun-chicken-breasts/

Keep going

 

Day 12 of the Advocare 24 day challenge

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Day 12.  TGIF!  Today is kind of a blah day.  It’s my second day on the Max phase and I still can’t believe how sweet the Advocare Chocolate Milkshake meal replacement is. Other than that, I have nothing new to report

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This weekend I will be working on my fitness.  I have had so many problems with different recumbent bikes at different gyms so I decided to buy one.  Here is the one I bought:

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It looks like it should work and it said the seat can be adjusted higher so I hope I can use it!  I will be parked in front of the tv-bikin’ and bingin’  (on tv shows) 🙂

cancelled

Speaking of  TV shows, I would like to say a few words about the mass exodus that ABC performed yesterday.  Castle, The Family, Grandfathered, Grinder, The Muppets and Gallavant were all cancelled.   I am sad about all of them!!  The worst is Castle because it is my favorite show, however they were not going to be able to get the girl who played Beckett back next year so it might not have been as good as it is now.  The other one I am extremely upset about is The Family.  That one is a mystery show that reveals more and more each week.  It is going to go unsolved because there is no season 2.  I actually started a petition to get it moved to Netflix.  I would appreciate, even if you don’t watch it, if you would sign it:

https://www.change.org/p/netflix-have-netflix-pick-up-the-abc-cancelled-show-the-family?recruiter=490823862&utm_source=petitions_show_components_action_panel_wrapper&utm_medium=copylink

Thank you!!

For my food today, I had my Spark and then my shake for breakfast.  I have chicken and salad for lunch.. and for dinner see the recipe below.

Ok  for the recipe of the day, I have chicken fajitas.  I think I am going to make this tonight:  http://jennycollier.com/oven-baked-chicken-fajitas/

Keep on Movin’

 

Day 10 of the Advocare 24 day challenge

I am on day 10!! This is the last day of the Cleanse phase.  I looked up more information about this on Advocare’s website.  The Cleanse phase is basically a fresh start for your body.  It is supposed to “rid your body of waste and prepare your body to better absorb nutrients.” This is all to prepare your body for the Max phase which is days 11-24.  “The Max phase is about fueling your body in order to achieve maximum results.”  The supplements taken during the Max phase are supposed to help with appetite control,  energy and overall wellness

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So tonight I will weigh myself and take my measurements and see what the results of the Cleanse phase are.  I am excited!

Last night I attended my 4 yr old niece’s talent show.  She sang “On top of Spaghetti. ”  It was adorable.  I drove my mom to the show.  When it was over, we were starving because we had not had dinner.  My mom wanted to go to a Chinese restaurant but I knew I would want the noodles way too bad to eat there.  Then she suggested Krispy Kreme.  I asked her if she was trying to sabotage me! 🙂  Finally we settled on Chipotle.  I am not a huge fan of Chipotle, but I looked online at their menu and saw they had salads.  So I got a chicken salad with just Salsa Verde and regular salsa on it.  Mine did not have a lot of lettuce on it(the picture below is not mine. It is one I found on google images), but it was OK.  I am starting to feel guilty though, because that was the third night I ate out.  Tonight and the rest of this week, I am going back to home cooked meals 🙂

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Today I am having my usual Spark and some nuts for breakfast.  I brought shredded chicken and salad for lunch.  For dinner today, I am having turkey breast that my mom made for me with salad.I am thinking tonight for my snack after dinner of  having a smoothie made with Silk almond milk (Vanilla, unsweetened) and frozen fruit.

Today I brought in my little peddler to put under my desk while I work.  I have been peddling at  intervals of 3 minutes and then stopping for a while.. It’s definitely a leg work out! Hopefully this will help with the weight loss as well.

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Here is the recipe of the day:

http://www.cleaneatingmag.com/recipes/sweet-sour-chicken/

Keep on playing.