LDRICHEL   48,280
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Fitness Fear #1: Faced

Friday, August 10, 2012



So, I decided I had better learn how to swim. If I expect to get any cardio in while I'm in the boot, I've just got to bite the bullet and do it. I've honestly been deathly afraid to swim in front of people (at a public pool or at the YMCA)...especially in a designated swim lane. It makes me feel very self-conscious...like everyone is watching or something.

Also, I had no clue HOW to swim correctly and I haven't actually swam freestyle since high school. That was a long time ago. And about 100 lbs ago too.

A little voice in the back of my mind was saying, "Leah, you should learn this...because someday you might want to do triathlons." Oh wait...that wasn't in the back of my mind...that was on the phone...it was my trainer. Haha. Either way...that voice is nuts! But...then I read that book and got all interested in triathlons. Oh Lord...there seems to be a recurring theme presenting itself in my life now. Grrrr.

So, here is what I did, friends:

I went to the computer and Googled "How to Swim". I kid you not. I watched like 3 videos. I also Googled "How to Water Jog". Upon seeing how completely DORKY people look when they water jog, I decided the LEAST DORKY option in a public place would be swimming.

Last night, I dreamed I was swimming with a relay team. It was my first race and the team was shocked that I was actually good! In my dream, I was going over and over the technique from the Google videos in my head. I woke up and thought, "Maybe I should try this."

So I headed over to the Y for Adult Open Swim this afternoon. Picked up my very own pair of goggles at Kmart on the way there and hopped in that pool.

It was nerve wracking (sp?) sharing a lane with an older guy who obviously KNEW what he was doing and didn't have to take a break to breathe every two lengths. But, I DID find that the techniques I learned on YouTube made things easier than they would have been if I would have just gone out flailing.

The toughest part for me was negotiating the breathing. They say every three strokes and blow the air out when you are looking down underwater. But...I just could not get enough air. Hence, the break I took every two lengths.

In the end, though, I swam 20 lengths of the pool in about 30 minutes time. I thought about going another 15 minutes, but decided that half an hour was good for my first time out.

And I'm SO glad I stopped then!!! See, the thing is...I didn't actually FEEL the workout until AFTER I got out of that pool! Talk about exhaustion! That was definitely the fastest 670 calories I've ever burned!

But I feel great. And I didn't drown and I didn't die and no one made fun of me or even looked twice. So...maybe I'll do it again. And again and again.

Stay tuned as I face my next big fear: riding a bicycle.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EAWESTON1 9/21/2012 10:37AM

  Way to go!

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DRAK416 9/14/2012 4:09PM

  Congrats

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LINNBEAR 8/23/2012 9:33AM

    Swimming is a great workout and it good because it doesn't put the strain on your joints weight bearing exercises do. I was blessed to learn early and swam on a team until high school. Breathing is all about timing. You can breath whenever it works for you...every other, every 3rd, every 5th. I would encourage you to get used to breathing on both sides. One technique they give you to practice breathing is to stand at the side of the pool arms length from the wall. Bend and put your face in the water, arms out resting on the edge. "stroke" with your arms and practice breathing while standing. Does this make sense? The top of your body is "swimming" but you aren't moving. Keep up the swimming!

Oh, I have also done a number of tri's. It is great because you vary your training which helps keep from repetition injuries and during the race one something gets tiring you soon start the next section which uses different muscles. Consider Team in Training with the Leukemia Society. They have couches and training sessions to get you prepared and it is for a good cause.

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ALICIAYOUNG1127 8/22/2012 7:46AM

    I am going through the same exact thing at this very moment...funny, when I woke up the other day I had the idea to google it..lol great minds! two months ago I switched gyms in order to have a pool..lol..still havent been able to force myself even into the pool area..omg...I am going to google it now and go tomorrow...thanks for inspiring me, and at the exact right moment no less!!!! get back in that pool!

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SWEETPB731 8/20/2012 1:43PM

    Wow! That's awesome!

Congratulations for having the courage to try something new.

Keep up the good work :)

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CICELY360 8/16/2012 2:57PM

  Good blog

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NEWCHINELO 8/15/2012 3:05PM

    YES, you are going back there!

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DOTTY7267 8/15/2012 12:16PM

    beautiful pool! Nice place to start.

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AWOOD1973 8/15/2012 4:55AM

    emoticon Good for you, facing your fear and getting into that pool! :)

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-MOPPET- 8/14/2012 8:32PM

    This is my fitness fear too! I never really learned how to swim properly and I am so scared to go to the pool and make an ass of myself! Very encouraging. Thank you!

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BABYLON17 8/14/2012 3:44PM

    Great post! I have been thinking about picking up swimming again and your idea about looking at YouTube is a great one.

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LUV2RUN72 8/14/2012 10:35AM

    OH thanks for sharing! I am learning how to swim for a mini tri in October and you are way ahead of me if you can swim 2 lengths before stopping. Way to face your fear and just do it. emoticon

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KWING517 8/14/2012 8:56AM

    Thaks for sharing this!! Great timing too! I just had my very first ever in my whole life swim lesson last night - at 35 years old. It went about how you would expect, and i didnt swim very far without taking small breathing breaks - had a tough time figuring out how to breathe too. My instructor didnt seem concerned and says he'll have me swimming for a full hour without a break by the end of the 7 week session - we'll see about that :)

I've always wanted to learn how to swim, and here I am, at the very beginning. I feel alot like I did that first day I ran - like I'm never going to get it and I might as well give up now. Boy, am I glad I didn't give up on running, and I WON'T give up on swimming either!!

Thanks for sharing your story! We CAN do this!!

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THETROUT 8/14/2012 7:49AM

    Now the hard part is over! Congrads!

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GEEKYMOUSE 8/14/2012 3:17AM

    Wow, coming across many awesome blogs this morning. :) I've had the same fears about swimming. I don't know how to swim either. I should try this.....! THANK YOU FOR THE BLOG! :)

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EATVEGAN 8/13/2012 11:36PM

    Wow! I'm impressed. Your overall fitness must be the bomb.
Janet

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FATHINSN 8/13/2012 9:52PM

    I always fear of swimming, not because of drowning but because of what if I can't float! One time, when I went for camping with my friends, my friend tried to teach me how to swim by learning how to float. I only able to when I knew she had her hands hovering underwater but when she pull out her hands, I just flop like a fish out of water LOL

Funny thing is I live in a state where we have biggest number of rivers compare to other states and our country's water athletes usually came from my state, haha.

I hope I can conquer swimming like you did :D

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CINEMAVEN 8/13/2012 9:12PM

  Awesome and inspiring!
I can only dog paddle but in the two months since I started aquafit, I've seriously been considering taking lessons because I feel so happy in the pool and if I could lane swim, I could stay another hour ....honestly, if anyone would have told me four months ago that I would be working out an hour a day and loving it, I would have tried to have them committed

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LELERS 8/13/2012 2:57PM

    Awesome! Nice job! emoticon emoticon

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MISALINDA 8/13/2012 2:19PM

    You did great! It took me a few weeks to get up to 30 minutes of solid swimming without alternating walking/jogging, I'm jealous!

Great job!

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MELLYBEANS0919 8/13/2012 12:37PM

    I can only doggy paddle, so this is really awesome! Way to go!

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ESME25 8/13/2012 11:57AM

    emoticon emoticon

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ZZZKATZZZZ 8/13/2012 11:45AM

    Awesome! You go!!!

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PATTISTAMPS 8/13/2012 9:57AM

    WOO HOO!!! That is amazing! 30 minutes on your first time! Give yourself the "swimming badge", because you have earned it!

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ELLDOCKE 8/13/2012 9:21AM

    I have found that I love working out in the water. LOVE it! Walking is okay, running is not an option for me at this time. Water jogging, swimming with a kick board - fantastic! When my shoulder heals, I plan to relearn how to swim as well. Years ago, I had a frightening (and deliberately caused by another) near drowning experience. When I faced my fear of the deep water, wow! How empowering. Now to face my next fear, riding a bike on the road, not just in the living room.

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SHRINKTOFIT1 8/13/2012 9:13AM

    I've always dreamed about doing a triathlon, but been afraid of the training. The fact that you are breaking training down and facing your fears is such an inspiration! Keep up the great work!
emoticon emoticon

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YULLABELLE 8/13/2012 8:27AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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IN102WIN 8/13/2012 7:57AM

    I really admire you. You are doing things that I haven't even tried as yet because I think I need to lose weight first. I've always wanted to learn how to swim. Maybe when I'm lighter. Same thing for bicycle riding!! Thanks for posting!!

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HEATHER3477 8/13/2012 7:27AM

    emoticon

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SBNORMAL 8/13/2012 6:35AM

  I am going to watch those videos, too. I do water aerobics, but I am thinking about taking private swim lessons. The calorie burn is a knockout, you can not beat it. Keep up the swimming!!

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BLOOMING52 8/13/2012 3:34AM

    Way to go

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NAOLEE 8/13/2012 12:11AM

    Great; you really knows how to knock out fears. You are doing a great job.
emoticon emoticon

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AJB121299 8/12/2012 11:31PM

    great job

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SANDYLH1 8/12/2012 11:29PM

  emoticon

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JANETTEB553 8/12/2012 10:39PM

    Yeah know what you mean. I do 50 lenghts 20 x backstroke and 10 x each of breaststroke, kicking with board, and side swimming. Have given up on freestyle because of the breathing. and am trying to learn to breathe each 3 strokes.. Its hard....

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MUSICGIRL0604 8/12/2012 9:39PM

    That's great! I totally understand the insecurity about swimming, although mine comes from the fact that I truly can't swim/float to save my life. It's a great workout, and you just gave yourself another option you can use anytime. Congrats!

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FIRESTARINFINI 8/12/2012 9:17PM

    Congrats on going into the pool. I wasn't afraid of swimming for fear of people, but I was afraid because I was afraid of drowning. A word of advice, get some swimming lessons from an instructor. Swimming is not like any other sport, human beings aren't designed to swim and you're not going to know instinctively what to do. The Y should have adult swimming lessons. I recommend taking them!

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LLBLOVER 8/12/2012 9:14PM

    Excellent job! Kudos to you for facing your fear! That's awesome!!!

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LIVINHEALTHY9 8/12/2012 8:40PM

    Good for you!
Conquering a fear is a big deal! That's awesome!!

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KATD13 8/12/2012 8:17PM

    Great job!
You will get better & better, the more you swim. It is a wonderful, no impact, all over workout.

I do love water & swimming, but I am not great. I've been trying to learn how to flip turn. I am embarrassed & only try it if no one is in the pool. Obviously, I'm not getting much practice in. Maybe 2 or 3 attempts, each time I swim.

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GODSBEST 8/12/2012 6:57PM

    Yeah to you for facing your fear and defeating it. On to the bike !!

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CRAFTINWIFE 8/12/2012 6:55PM

    emoticon emoticon

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TEACHERKINZ 8/12/2012 6:39PM

  Good for you!! I am impressed! I don't know how to swim nor ride a bike, so you've definitely inspired me. emoticon

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DENRNAJ 8/12/2012 6:18PM

    Thanks for letting me know that NOT everyone is looking- we deserve to do what we need to do to get healthy! I'm proud of your accomplishment!
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CMERUN29 8/12/2012 5:54PM

    Wow, very inspiring! I'd love to learn to swim. Maybe I'll have to start by googling How To Swim as well. Keep up the good work and I hope to be reading about your upcoming triathlon soon.

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CAROL494 8/12/2012 5:03PM

  emoticon emoticon

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MYEMMANUEL 8/12/2012 4:03PM

    Good for you. Your blog shows positive thinking and strength. Proud of you.

Kewanna

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SERASARA 8/12/2012 2:27PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ICAN2DOTHIS 8/12/2012 2:07PM

  If you can inspire me to swim then the least I can do is to encourage you to get on a bike! I would start with the stationary bike in a Y, then maybe even a spin class, THEN the gears and all the stuff that's on even the "basic" bikes. When I learned how to ride my road bike, I hadn't ever had more than 3 gears! (You can do it though - it just took me a little longer since I'm not mechanical lol).

I think you will have so much fun on a bike. And if I can help in any way, I will be glad to! I'm planning on the Senior Olympics next year since I'm now over 50...and I'm now thinking of a tri too thanks to you overcoming your fear of swimming!

Have a great week and thanks for the post! Becky

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NELLBELLA26 8/12/2012 2:00PM

    Way to go on conquering your fear with swimming. Seems like you got right into it.
What a wonderful goal to think about-- triathlons! Keep swimming!
emoticon emoticon

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Am I Beautiful Right NOW?

Thursday, August 09, 2012

So, I had my pity party a couple weeks ago. I cried my tears. I re-aligned my mind to the reality of my situation (4 weeks in the walking boot and physical therapy in the water). I got the greatest pep talk ever from my very dear trainer and he helped me to kick out my negative thoughts and adjust my view of reality.

I have worked out a total of 320 minutes over the past 9 days. Considering running has not been a part of that equation, I'm really quite proud of this accomplishment....even though I know I can do so much more. And I will.

I have made some revolutionary changes to my diet...trainer calls it Table Training. I've really been reigning things in and doing the best I can to be as disciplined as I can with my choices. Not perfect, but damn close. Working hard to PLAN ahead...to make sure I get my protein, that I'm not going over on fat, that I'm eating as much whole and healthy food as possible.

I wasn't seeing any loss...but no significant gains either. The extra protein was making my body feel AMAZING. I have felt tight all over (in a great way) from all the strength work I've been doing and I just feel SO HEALTHY.

But the scale was not budging. Until today...I posted a 1.6 lbs weight loss. I was SO SO happy. I am praying that it keeps going in the downward direction.

Even though I'm doing absolutely everything in my power to help my body "heal" from obesity, the battle is so much more on the emotional and mental field than anything else.

Yeah...I feel great...but I miss running. I sometimes think about it in the middle of a workout and my heart feels overwhelmingly sad.

I'm a girl...I worry about things....

What if I go back to running and I don't love it anymore?
What if all this extra strength training and pool therapy really doesn't work?
What if I can't last for 7 miles anymore?
How will I possibly be ready for my half marathon in October?
What if this is a recurring injury?
What if I can't lose enough weight and my stupid obesity causes a bone bruise AGAIN?
What if I simply can't lose anymore weight, no matter what I do?

What if, what if, what if, what if???

It's mental torture, I tell you. It's one thing to be able to control my ACTIONS and do all the things I know to be right for my body at this time. It's quite another to tame the tongue of the doubt demons within. (borrowed that term from Francie Van Wirkus, author of the book I read yesterday)

What it comes down to is this: am I beautiful right now? Am I proud of who I am RIGHT NOW?

I took my 6 year old to the public pool on Tuesday. It was just her and me. We went the moment it opened and I told her we could stay as long as she wanted to stay. She was over the moon excited. This child loves me to death. To her, I hang the stars. I am her hero and her world. She says "I love you" to me at least 15 times a day. She is so cuddly and always wants to be touching me or near me or hugging or kissing me. She adores me.

Why can't *I* adore me like that?

My 9 year old is so proud of me for all that I've done and am doing. She brags to her friends that her mom can run 7 miles. She refuses to let me say I'm fat and she always tells me that I should not say mean things about myself.

My 4 year old boy...ohhhh my 4 year old boy!!! There is not another boy on this planet that I am more in love with. (Sad...but true. Maybe not healthy, marriage-wise, but that's a whole other blog!) That little boy is my heart walking on two legs. He still kisses me on the lips! He expresses his love continuously and tenderly and never ever ever stops. When I put on make-up or a dress, he gently caresses my arm and says, "Mommy, you so pretty." Talk about melting your heart!

At the pool, Elayna and I took one of those photos of ourselves where I reach out as far as I can and we get in close so we can both fit in the pic. I had pool hair and Elayna had blue teeth from her snow cone and we'd been out in the water and chlorine and air and heat all day.

I was shocked when I saw it. It's not often that I take a picture of myself and I actually feel beautiful. I made it my phone background. And, I'm not kidding...I can't stop looking at it. There is something perfect about the coloring and the lighting and it's just...beautiful. I told my husband that if I die soon, he better use that picture at my funeral. Yeah, I'm weird and think things like that. LOL.

*I* am beautiful in that picture.

Why does it feel wrong to say that? Why isn't that OK? If my kids can say it to me, why can't I??? Well, starting now...I can.



Make no mistake about it...I will keep working hard. I have goals to reach. But I am beautiful now. And I need to start treating myself as such.

And so are you.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LINNBEAR 8/23/2012 9:20AM

    I was listening to an author on the radio discuss how our self talk is soooo toxic. We say things to ourselves we would never say to someone else. We would be embarrassed to even think those thoughts about someone else and yet we poison ourselves with it. You are beautiful, you will continue to lose weight and you are an athlete, more than a runner, An ATHLETE! I have been working on trying to take control of those thoughts, to focus on the positives.

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CJBAGGINS 8/20/2012 12:58AM

    So very very true. Why are we so quick to believe our own usually warped views of ourselves, yet not the sincere, heartfelt comments from those who love us? Why is it hard for me to accept my husband's assertions that I am "cute" or "pretty"? Why do I not believe my teens when they tell me that I *can* do something I think I can't?

Why, why, why.

Good questions.

And, yes, that picture is a very good one of you. I agree about the lighting. There is something in the sunlight on your face that reflects your inner, and YES outer beauty!

cj

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HFAYE81 8/15/2012 4:56PM

    You ARE beautiful!! I'm glad you can see it in that picture!

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CINEMAVEN 8/13/2012 9:16PM

  Totally made me teary...you really are beautiful in that picture and when you talk about your little boy, it so resonated. My little boy is 20 and he's still just like yours.

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OZIETWIN 8/13/2012 4:11PM

    Your blog was amazing! I love the passion you bring to your life and your kids.

You are a beautiful woman, inside and out!

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2LIVESIMPLY 8/13/2012 12:52PM

  Reading this brings tears to my eyes, because it feels like you've written my thoughts. Thank you so much for sharing.

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MELLYBEANS0919 8/13/2012 12:49PM

    You are beautiful. What sweet kids you have.

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LILLIANH13 8/13/2012 8:26AM

    I like what you said about "healing" from obesity. I've never heard/seen it put that way and it makes sense to me. Losing weight is so much more than the fitness and exercise. It's so much more mental/emotional that one would think and that's the hardest part. Getting out of my own head is my biggest downfall.

My grandpa always told me, "Can't lives on won't street--if you can't do something it's because you will not try." As long as you try, you are not a failure.

I kept my niece a week this summer; she loves to swim so I took her to the public pool here. And I wore my swimsuit and laid in the sun with no coverup, because I needed the sun. She had a blast and I thought, she's happy, I'm content, heck with these people, I don't know them and they don't know me. And that was the best week of summer I've had in a LONG while, just taking her to the pool, watching her go down the waterslide, and soaking up the sun.

Sometimes we have to move backwards in order to move forwards.

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NELLBELLA26 8/12/2012 2:08PM

    What a beautiful concept. Why can't we see ourselves the way others see us? We constantly have that nagging negative voice inside that says we aren't good enough. No matter what weight we reach, that voice seems to always be lurking there. It seems like you are finally starting to silence it.
Your children sound like absolutely amazing individuals! what a proud mother you must be.
That picture radiates beauty, light, and peace! I love it!
Great blog. emoticon

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ROB704 8/12/2012 10:08AM

    Nicely said!

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TRYINGHARD54 8/12/2012 8:52AM

    great blog

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WILDFLOWER521 8/12/2012 8:46AM

    I LOVED reading this blog. Your happiness for life and the love for your kids (and them for you) just shines through!

Thanks for sharing and the message of this blog is so spot on. We are beautiful and should treat ourselves as such. And the picture is wonderful!

Spark on!

emoticon emoticon

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ROSGETSSERIOUS 8/12/2012 5:57AM

    You are so beautiful and you have a beautiful spirit which comes through in everything you write - I wish more children could feel the warmth of their mother's love as your most certainly do - you are inspirational and a great psoitive role model.
Have a fabulous week.


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ISABELLE31 8/12/2012 1:08AM

    Great post. BTW, you definitely look great in that picture, but I think you look great in all of your pictures because of your smile and the personality that shines through! :)

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COURTSSLIMDOWN 8/12/2012 12:41AM

    I loved your blog and youre absolutely right you are beautiful! my mind like yours can be my worst enemy. but we gotta push thru and think positive thoughts. you will bounce back soon enough! good luck to you! hope u dont mind me adding you as a friend!!
emoticon emoticon

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ANGELWENDYMAMA 8/12/2012 12:23AM

    You are beautiful!!!
and I loved hearing about your four year old saying such sweet things to you.. My 5 yr old son sometimes says very sweet things, too. (Of course sometimes he says mean things, too, but that's when he doesn't like that I am not giving him his own way every time.)

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SALEX52 8/12/2012 12:18AM

    good luck with your rehab.

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ONEATATIME3 8/12/2012 12:04AM

  Yes, You are beautiful!! emoticon

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CAROL494 8/11/2012 11:04PM

  You ARE beautiful and you have a wonderful smile! emoticon

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RJNICHOLS 8/11/2012 10:54PM

    You can do it. Keep believing in your self and reevaluating your progress.

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LVMAMAW 8/11/2012 10:10PM

    Great blog! You ARE beautiful and that is a great picture! Keep those great thoughts coming!! emoticon emoticon

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KATIEGARCIA2 8/11/2012 10:06PM

  Thank you for sharing!

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AJB121299 8/11/2012 10:04PM

    great job

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FORMERCURVYLADY 8/11/2012 9:53PM

    Yes, you are beautiful..on the inside and out. That is what your children see. I think you caught a glimpse of that in the picture. emoticon

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EGR2BEME 8/11/2012 9:07PM

    You are beautiful! And the love and support of your beautiful children is SO AWESOME!

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AQUABUNNY 8/11/2012 8:52PM

    That is a beautiful picture and it sounds like your kids are the best cheerleaders and motivators you could ever ask for, they sound awesome!!! Keep listenin' to 'em!!!

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EBURGITE 8/11/2012 8:29PM

    emoticon

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THERESAMARIEM 8/11/2012 7:25PM

    You are beautiful!! Its nice to see that you realize that. I know we all have issues with that, not realizing that we are beautfiul. It doesn't take a size 0 to make someone beautiful. Its much more what is on the inside than outside that truly makes a person beautiful and you my friend are exceptional! emoticon

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EDELWEISS33 8/11/2012 7:19PM

    I believe we sometimes Have to go back to being like little children. Back to the basics-remembering the little things are so much sweeter thru child's eyes.

Thanks for sharing.

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JPGSMOM 8/11/2012 6:51PM

    This is an awesome pic, you look so happy! And yes SO beautiful! I commend you on your honest blog. Sometimes we are the ones who are hardest on ourselves. Keep up the good work! Our own personal weight loss reward may not come to us overnight, but thank goodness we get times like this to enjoy and celebrate along the way.
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DRAMAJLN 8/11/2012 5:45PM

    I think the best pictures come when we are doing something we genuinely enjoy or are taken when we are genuinely happy. You were just enjoying the time you spent with your daughter, so you have a great smile and the picture comes out looking lovely. Great post and it's a good reminder that sometimes I need to take a break from focusing on what changes I still want to make and just appreciate where I am at and how far I have come.

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TXGRANDMA 8/11/2012 5:06PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DR8561 8/11/2012 5:04PM

    What a great picture! You ARE beautiful! I'm still working on not seeing the fat girl every time I look in the mirror, but I'm getting there. It's a process, right?
emoticon emoticon

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MOELIFE2LIVE 8/11/2012 4:34PM

    That is emoticon that you can see what everyone else can!

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LOSE15YES 8/11/2012 4:10PM

    WooHoo and Hurray. You ARE beautiful. And so fortunate to have such wonderful kids! I understand about the negative self talk. Whenever I am with friends I later beat myself up .... Just knowing I said the wrong thing. Or right thing at the wrong time. I read and love the book 'the 4 agreements'. And it taught me how to not take things personally and to not make assumptions. I reread passages of the book every week!! emoticon

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IACTA_ALEA_EST 8/11/2012 3:51PM

    Some of the simplest truth get muddied in the process of surviving the challenges of adolescence. Glad we are both thinking along the same lines...

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LZY0108 8/11/2012 3:43PM

    AWESOME blog!

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PARKERB2 8/11/2012 3:21PM

    Definitely an A+

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HAPPI2ME 8/11/2012 3:04PM

    You are very beautiful and so is your daughter... Great pic.!!

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GUCCI9300 8/11/2012 2:13PM

    emoticon You are Beautiful!!!

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HEATHER3477 8/11/2012 1:07PM

    You are beautiful!!!!!!!! and your honesty makes you even more beautiful!!! emoticon

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TAROTLADY 8/11/2012 12:59PM

    We are so hyper critical of ourselves. Of course you are beautiful and don't be afraid to ask or acknowledge that.
Take lots of pictures to remind yourself you beautiful woman!

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DATMAMA4 8/11/2012 12:34PM

    Love this blog post. Yes, you ARE beautiful. How nice that the photo allowed you to see yourself as others see you.

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NOCALORIES 8/11/2012 12:07PM

    Thank you for writing this blog. God did create everyone beautiful. Seeing yourself beautiful is a real delight to read. Take this moment and appreciate you for you are wonderful.

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CSNOW71 8/11/2012 12:06PM

    I always look forward to reading your blogs, this one teared me up!! You are such an open and honest person and I love that about you but you are also a very beuatiful woman (inside and OUT).

Best wishes and continued success!!

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BRASKIN 8/11/2012 12:05PM

  emoticon emoticon

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SHOAPIE 8/11/2012 11:39AM

    emoticon

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WILSON1926 8/11/2012 11:20AM

    You are incredible and beautiful. keep going
Michael

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MOM-MOM8 8/11/2012 10:59AM

    emoticon You are beautiful! emoticon for reminding all of us that we need to love ourselves where we are and throughout the journey, where ever it leads us. emoticon emoticon

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ONENEL 8/11/2012 10:59AM

    Well this brought tears to my eyes.
First the love of children- they love us for who we are with no judgements. Kids do not lie- they speak the truth.
Second- just hearing you say you are beautiful. Think we sometimes focus too much on what we dont like instead of seeing what others see in us.
Listen to those children and keep looking at that picture- see yourself as others do "beautiful" inside and out.

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The Competitor In Me - A Book Review

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Today, I woke up feeling not quite right. Something was wrong with my stomach and I was just feeling nasty. I tried to remedy it with healthy food, plenty of water, caffeine, rest. The feeling still remains and additional symptoms have presented as the day has worn on. In short, I feel like crap.

It must have been fate because I was perusing my Facebook newsfeed and noticed a post from a friend, Francie Van Wirkus (who I added because she'd made some funny or great comment on one of SANDIEGOJOHN'S posts awhile back). From the time I added her, she's been great about occasionally commenting on my FB stati and encouraging me in my running, working out, etc. I quickly began to think of her as a real FB friend, not just a friend of a friend.

I knew she had written a book because, well, she's been plugging it on her FB page. I've eyed the posts lazily, not sure if I wanted to invest the $0.99 to buy it.

The REAL reason I resisted buying it is because I worked for a full year in self-publishing. I was the authors' first contact when they bought a contract and I helped them get all their materials prepared for editorial or for print. To be quite honest, that awful year in self-publishing taught me one thing: just because someone calls herself an author does not mean they even know how to construct a sentence or write in the English language. I'd say 98% of the materials I saw on a daily basis were absolute JUNK.

There was an overwhelming sense of guilt in that job - on the one hand, the fact that these people plunked down thousands of dollars to print their book and they had no idea our company was mercilessly taking their money and their book had no chance of ever selling more than 10 copies to friends and family and on the other hand, that we were marketing these books on Amazon, etc as something worthy of some hard working person's money. It was despicable and, frankly, evil.

So...it is with deep mistrust that I view ANY book or any author these days...especially eBooks and especially books on Amazon. I have to be honest...I have no idea if Francie's book is self-published.

But today I decided to go for it. I mean, it's $0.99. And, well, I really just had a good feeling about this. I have learned today that it doesn't matter whether Francie's book was self-published or not. If my experience with the self-publisher has scared you...then it also ought to tell you that if I ever do recommend a book highly, it is absolutely QUALITY.



Francie Van Wirkus is a REAL author! Not only can she string together a sentence and do great things like...you know, spell and stuff. Her material is riveting for any aspiring runner, swimmer, biker or triathlete. Or for any parent who finds it difficult to balance career, family and health.

The book is about her journey from basically no fitness to running to doing triathlons and, ultimately, to her experiences with the ultimate of all races, the Ironman.

Although I am not a triathlete (I refuse to say I'm ONLY a runner...a good friend, ABSOLUTZER0 once told me to never use the word ONLY in regard to my running, because every bit of it is a personal accomplishment and I agree), I was able to relate so closely to so much of Francie's story. She has a way of describing things in a way that makes you feel you are there, racing beside her.

The chapter called "Bee Sting" made me laugh out loud several times. Her story was anything but predictable. I found myself trying to guess the outcomes of certain relationships and events and races and I was wrong every time. I love when that happens!

Throughout the book, what struck me most was Francie's outstanding determination and strength. I mean, she's an Ironman for goodness sake...of course she's an amazing athlete. And yet, she was so candid and vulnerable about her shortcomings, her doubts, her fears...so completely and unbelievably HUMAN. It's impossible to read this book and not feel at the end that she is your close friend.

So much of what she said struck me deeply. Becuase so much of it is what I have thought and felt in the past few months with my own metamorphasis from average mom to athlete.

This excerpt, in particular, speaks to me regarding the training I've put in for my half marathon thus far:

"I learned the hard way that no one else was going to prod me to do it or make time for me. I included my family in my progress, to help them be a part of my success but ultimately, they were fair weather fans. On a cold winter day at 5:00am, they wouldn't be the ones to kick my rear out of bed and get on my CompuTrainer. Or head ot the pool when I didn't feel like it. I owned my goals completely and the only excuses were mine."

Along the way, Francie suffered so many injuries and setbacks (as athletes do). This was, in some strange way, so soothing for my soul. Reading this, along with watching the Olympics this week, has taught me that I am not alone in this injury business. And nothing is over for me. This is just a temporary issue to handle. I may need to think about it in every training period and every race for the rest of my life or I may not. Either way...it's not going to be a barrier to cause me to quit.

Running isn't all there is. I had the best workout in the pool yesterday. I did some laps, but also some deep water running and some shallow water running with a 50-lb kid on my back. I burned 700 calories. But, even better, I realized that I don't have to waste away physically while my ankle injujry heals.

Francie says:

"At a time when I was working on healing, my competitive spirit still had an outlet for working hard and building fitness. Now that I'm a born again swimmer, I notice others who are like me, forced into the pool due to some other injury but coming out the other side with a new love for the water."

I can only hope that I get there with swimming. At this point, I'm still scared to death to do anything in the water if any people are around. I am plagued by self-consciousness and feeling like I'm just out of my league. My trainer said, "This is a great opportunity for you to learn to swim and gear up for a possible sprint tri next year." I was like, "Are you freaking kidding me??? There's no way in hell I'll EVER be a triathlete! I'm having enough trouble being a regular old runner!" But, if there's anything I've learned from running...it's this: never say never.

The other angle of Francie's book that was just so touching and beautiful was how she weaved her family into the story. No, strike that...they weren't weaved in....they WERE the story. Her athletic career was weaved into THEM. And I so respect that.

A couple of my favorite excerpts on this that hit me pretty hard:

"I learned the hard way that as parents, we should put our kids first, but not at the expense of our own essence. In no way are we helping our kids when we let ourselves erode into near nothing for their sake. They need us as their best resource for healthy growth now and for years to come."

"You can have your family be your priority and still do something for you. It does not matter if your goal is a marathon or a musical instrument, if your vision for success is strong, it can withstand just about any challenge. It takes a big effort to be capable of doing this but the payback received is enormous. Balancing it all in a healthy way takes practice and a willingness to make mistakes."

Today I spent 12 hours reading this entire book. It was my personal marathon for the day. I was completely immersed in another athlete's life all day long and to say I was inspired would be an understatement. I think this excerpt from one of the last chapters so perfectly encapsulates the spirit of this story:

"Forget the excuses of not having the time, the support, the money, whatever. Anything worth having must be worth fighting for. Taking time for me is always going to feel weird and be hard because I work 40 hours a week at my job and at least another 60 hours a week as a Mom. Giving time to me is a premium that I must not waste. Putting my children first doesn't mean I have to die inside. What good am I as a Mom if I am constantly muddling through mediocrity? How can I expect to raise kids who will reach for the stars if I'm not doing the same?"

I highly recommend this book for all my running/athlete friends and family. It always helps to hear about someone else's journey. We all need inspiration and I know I'll remember nuggets from this story as I run my first half marathon....and then my first full...and who knows what after that? Don't we all need a little inspiration?

So, go on...buy the book. If you don't have a Kindle, but do have a smartphone (like Android or iPhone), you can get a free Kindle app for your phone. Yep, I read an entire 194-page book on my phone today. Haha. Now...you KNOW that was a good book! Haha.

Check it out! Let's all go and make Francie a hundred-aire overnight!!! (If you become a millionaire overnight, Francie...you better tell me. Because that will mean that I have a million readers...and then I will just die. Ha!)

I promise, friends...you won't be sorry.

www.francievanwirkus.com/books.html

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUSIEMT 8/11/2012 7:50PM

    I couldn't help myself I just bought it! Your critical analysis sold me on it.

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DR8561 8/11/2012 4:59PM

    I just ordered the book. I'm just starting to see myself as a potential athlete. Still taking baby steps, but finishing a marathon is on my bucket list. emoticon emoticon

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SOXFANNH 8/11/2012 7:45AM

  Great job! I still don't always look forward to swimming, but I always feel so great after I am done. The breathing will come with practice. Practice exhaling with your face in the water, and then you will NEED to inhale, and it will become intuitive. Keep it up!

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SNOWYOGA 8/9/2012 10:14PM

    Thanks I will have to look for this book!

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KIPPER15 8/9/2012 9:00PM

    This book sounds very inspiring. I will have to check it out. Hope you are feeling better.

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HOLISTIC5 8/9/2012 8:49PM

    Thanks for this info- just got it for my Kindle...on vacation next week so tons of time to read.

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SLIMLEAF 8/9/2012 7:10PM

    Sounds good!

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AMBER281 8/9/2012 6:15PM

    Thanks for the review.
I am going to have to check it out.

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KATHY_NATURELVR 8/9/2012 2:17PM

    Thank you for the review! Kindle also has an app for PCs, downloadable from the Amazon website :)

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LYNSEY723 8/9/2012 12:26PM

    Thank you for your review on this! I have a sneaky suspicion I will be reading the entire thing on my phone as well - I can't wait!!

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LINDAKAY228 8/9/2012 12:02PM

    Hope you're feeling better today. I am definitely going to read the book!

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KAREN42BOYS 8/9/2012 11:46AM

    Sounds like that bad stomach was just what you needed to be thoroughly inspired! Great review!

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ADNAW_YOTS 8/9/2012 11:41AM

    Just another way our world is changing. My son is a musician and their world along with authors is really changing on how to get it promoted. Thanks for the information and of course the blog. Hope you are feeling better.


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MEH50BEWELL 8/9/2012 11:34AM

    The exerpts you posted are not just for athletes or runner, or even exercise in general. They are rules for LIFE, and especially mothers. I am no where near at a running state (I've dabbled in trying.... to jog) but these quotes are so strong to me especially
"Forget the excuses of not having the time, the support, the money, whatever. Anything worth having must be worth fighting for. Taking time for me is always going to feel weird and be hard because I work 40 hours a week at my job and at least another 60 hours a week as a Mom. Giving time to me is a premium that I must not waste. Putting my children first doesn't mean I have to die inside. What good am I as a Mom if I am constantly muddling through mediocrity? How can I expect to raise kids who will reach for the stars if I'm not doing the same?"

I've put off my exercise for 2 weeks now for the sake of getting my children ready for their move - school - life!
That stops today ---- back to the gym after work tonight. After I download this book on my kindle. I may just have to spend 12 hours in the gym finishing it LOL.
Thank you again for sharing your insight - wisdom - and just plain ideas that help us all move to the next level - or just make you want to say hhhmmmmm!
And I think you do have a million readers emoticon does it count if you go back and read your blogs a million times, like I do?
Peace - have a great week in the pool.

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PATTISTAMPS 8/9/2012 11:21AM

    Thanks for sharing this... I am a reader, and will absolutely read this!

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TMOORE073 8/9/2012 10:38AM

    Thanks for posting this. Can't wait to read it. Love inspirational stories. I'm glad your pool workouts are going good for you! Keep up the good work girl! Your doing great!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PEGGYO 8/9/2012 9:46AM

    thanks for sharing

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DJSHIP46 8/9/2012 9:10AM

    Okay... I bought it:) I'm going on vacation next week and will try to read it then. Thanks for the review/recommendation!

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GUITARWOMAN 8/9/2012 8:39AM

    I cannot believe the typos and grammatical errors I fidn in even professionally published books these days...and newspapers, don't get me going!

I will try the book. Is it on iTunes or Kobo? emoticon

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SHERYL_B 8/9/2012 8:20AM

    I'm going to check it out!

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TORTISE110 8/9/2012 7:34AM

    Best books often come through friends! Thanks for this review.

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REMEMBER2BME 8/9/2012 7:32AM

    Thanks so much. I really appreciate it. I will buy the book!

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ADARKARA 8/9/2012 7:12AM

    Great review!

Sadly, even getting professionally published doesn't guarantee being a good writer these days.

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AUTUMNBRZ 8/9/2012 6:45AM

    I just bought it for my Nook :) Thank you for the review!

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MUSOLF6 8/9/2012 6:42AM

    Thank you for sharing, got to read it now..... emoticon emoticon

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STESSEDOUT27 8/9/2012 4:47AM

    Thanks for the awesome review on the book and yes I am going to buy it now. My interest was greatly Piqued!

Best of luck working out at the pool and just keep pushing!

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GINGERD03 8/9/2012 12:23AM

  Thanks for the review emoticon

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REGILIEH 8/9/2012 12:17AM

    Great review, I'm looking forward to your next good book and another review! Thank you!!!

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RUNNERRACHEL 8/9/2012 12:03AM

    emoticon emoticon

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TISTEN23 8/9/2012 12:02AM

    Thanks for the review!!

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GOING-STRONG 8/8/2012 11:59PM

    This sounds like a good one all right... I'm heading over to Amazon!

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DOTTIESPLACE 8/8/2012 11:29PM

    Thanks for the insight about this book. Sounds like a good sot in the arm to me.

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SIBLEYHONEYBEE 8/8/2012 11:16PM

    Thank you Leah for the awesome book review. I am just now learning that taking care of my family MEANS taking care of me. I am a much better wife/mother when I take time to cook healthy meals and exercise on a regular basis. I'M WORTH IT!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MELROSE13 8/8/2012 11:07PM

    Just purchased it on my kindle, thanks for the heads up, I LOVE to read books like this!!

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KKINNEA 8/8/2012 10:43PM

    Will do! Thanks for the review!

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NEWMOM20121 8/8/2012 10:39PM

    Thank you for sharing. I will have to check it out. Sounds like a great read.

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COCK-ROBIN 8/8/2012 10:37PM

    Wow, I've just got to read that book! Thanks for the heads up!

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Deep Water Disappointment & Delight

Monday, August 06, 2012

So I was pretty excited to attend Deep Water Exercise this evening - been craving a great workout. This particular class is at the gym on campus and is specifically geared towards faculty and staff. It's free and you can jump in anytime you want without signing up, so you can't beat that deal. We pay for a gym membership, but since we are staff, it's only $14/month and it automatically comes out of our paycheck. A pretty awesome deal, considering they have two gyms...one on each side of campus.

I remember that I went to this Deep Water Exercise class after I had begun to heal from my big accident two years ago. Granted, back then, I was struggling to do simple things like straighten my arm or, you know...put my hair in a ponytail. So...I remember this class being absolutely killer and an amazing workout! I specifically remember my foot cramping up just 5 minutes in to the first class.

Needless to say, I was raring to go today. I could not WAIT! Got in that pool and was ready to WORK!

It felt like we started out pretty slow, but then we started to get going a bit more (doing more water running types of moves) and I was thinking, "OK, yeah...this is about to get really good!" Then I was confused because we were removing our buoyancy belts. Turns out, 45 minutes was over already and we were stretching.

I was actually....ANGRY. Frustrated...because I didn't feel that my body had done anything yet. (To be fair, my long runs have been hitting almost 1.5 hours lately.) And here we were already done! I refused to stretch. Haha. Instead, I started water jogging and, while everyone else got out of the pool super fast, I took my time water jogging and getting as much of a burn in as I could as I slowly made my way to the edge of the pool and forced myself out. I was the last one out.

Everyone was thanking the instructor profusely and saying what an amazing workout it was...la la la. I thanked him, of course, because it's polite to do that. But, inside I was so confused.

Is this really where I'm at? Am I really TOO FIT for this class? That's both disappointing and incredibly empowering at the same time.

On the one hand, I realized that my water therapy will not be as easy as just joining a class...but that I will have to actively seek out a pool and do my OWN workout if I really want to get the burn and physical conditioning I'm looking for.

On the other hand, I felt so much confidence in my own body's strength. It was thrilling beyond measure and it let me know 100% that, when I get back to running, I WILL be kicking that half marathon's ass!!!! And maybe even SANDIEGOJOHN'S! We'll see! Haha.

For now, though...I'm focused on keeping my fitness at its peak and LOSING WEIGHT. I absolutely don't want this injury to recur and I've got to get the pounds off!!!

Tomorrow, I'm taking my girls to the pool and we are going as soon as they open. I intend to stay for most of the day and I will be in that pool as long as my body will allow it. I REALLY can't wait for that! Don't worry, dear Sparkies....I won't OVERDO it! I know how to listen to my body, that's for sure.

For tonight, I think I'll do some kettlebells to feel like I actually did something today. What about you? What are you doing for fitness today???

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NELLBELLA26 8/13/2012 1:17PM

    Wow! What a change. That had to feel amazing to do a class that kicked your butt last time and now you barely broke a sweat. You have become strong and resilient! My husband and I went to the beach yesterday and we had fun swimming in the waves.
I've been doing a lot of walking, nothing too high endurance. How long did it take you to build up to running as much as you do?

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SUSIEMT 8/11/2012 7:32PM

    I have been doing some walking, Elliptical, Recumbent Bike. I am getting back into it slowly like my doctor suggested. While walking home from the gym I tried a few jogging steps and knew to immediately return to walking. I don't want to re-injure my back. But you go girl!

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PATTOMMC3 8/11/2012 8:54AM

    emoticon

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SHERRY28269 8/9/2012 8:51AM

    Keep trying new things and designing your own workout if need be. Motivation is half the battle. emoticon

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LINDAKAY228 8/8/2012 6:06PM

    Isn't amazing sometimes how what we once thought was so hard is now so easy? Shows how far you've come!

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BLNBELL 8/8/2012 9:50AM

  You can Gage you own pace in the water push and pull with your legs more up your pace! You can get reach muscles that you never can on land. Go fast reach more. Squeeze those cheeks meaning rear end, breathe deeply! It shouldnt be a floating class it is a working class. It is your choice! Water works miracles, it is a weight room in the water! You work everything. Dont give up on water make the resistance work for you! Good luck!

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WARMSPRINGDAY 8/7/2012 8:17PM

    It just shows how incredibly far you have come.

I did 30 minutes of Biggest Loser Cardio Max this morning and a 1/2 hour killer strength training workout at fitness class this afternoon. I felt empowered when they had the 8 and 10 pound weights out for the curl and press and I had to go for the 15. Also excited that I've been able to do 1 minute situps - totally unassisted and a 1 minute plank. We are getting stronger, yes we are.

I am so scared of losing what I've gained while I'm not able to walk due to my plantar fasciitis, but if I ignore my trainer's advice . . .
emoticon

Comment edited on: 8/7/2012 8:18:42 PM

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CORINA-MOMOF4 8/7/2012 2:57PM

    sorry to hear that!! But WTG on staying in the pool longer - thats awesome!!

I did a 6 mile run this morning. Was going to take my daughter to the pool today, but she lost out due to bad behaviour. Maybe tomorrow we will get to go. This is also the week of our county fair, so hoping to go there on Thursday.

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PATTISTAMPS 8/7/2012 2:08PM

    You go, girlfriend... and don't forget the sunscreen!!!

You WILL stay fit because you are determined!

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HBLACK5 8/7/2012 1:38PM

    That's too bad that you didn't get the workout you were hoping for, but that is awesome to see how far you have a come.

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LINDAK25 8/7/2012 1:00PM

    Good for you! Just keep going.

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IRONBLOSSOM 8/7/2012 12:40PM

    emoticon

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NHEMBERGER 8/7/2012 12:28PM

    What do you think of the kettelbells?
I've been getting up every morning since last Wednesday & hopping on my Gazelle for 15 minutes. I aim for 7,000 steps on my pedometer by dinner. After a light dinner, I walk a 1 1/2 - 2 mile nature trail with my boyfriend.
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TMOORE073 8/7/2012 12:26PM

    Good for you my Spark friend! It's it amazing since you started running how is changes your body! It conditions you so well! You know as we have discussed in the past I love running like you do. I so know what you mean by not getting the work out you want. Yesterday was my boot camp class that I love soooo much & I couldn't go because I had to work late(agrrhh) I ran 45 minutes but I normally do that plus my boot camp class. I just felt something was missing! Don't get me wrong this girl does love her running but I really missed my weights! Hopefully you were able to get to the pool & do your own workout yourself! Keep up the good work your doing fantastic!!! You go girl!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JENNNY135 8/7/2012 12:20PM

    think it's time to train for a Triathlon

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BEAUTY_WITHIN 8/7/2012 12:00PM

    Way to go on the fitness stuff! :)

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SLIMLEAF 8/7/2012 11:57AM

    What a great problem to have! Well done!

I'm so impressed at your determination.

I hope you enjoy your day at the pool tomorrow.

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ILIKETOZUMBA 8/7/2012 11:55AM

    I know what you mean about being angry that you're not getting a good enough workout. I have that problem with a lot of Zumba instructors - they throw in dances that are too moderate for what I want. I want to sweat!! :) Glad you're taking matters into your own hands and finding a solution and a workout that caters to YOUR needs. Have fun at the pool!

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NITELITE72 8/7/2012 11:28AM

    You go girl!!

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KATHY_NATURELVR 8/7/2012 10:45AM

    I'm leading a 40 minute Tabata class in an hour :) I'll be sore for the next 4 days.

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NDKARIKARI 8/7/2012 10:13AM

    awesome blog! GO YOU!

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GOSPARK45 8/7/2012 10:07AM

    It's like going back to your old school and everything looks so small. We forget how much WE'VE changed! At least it motivated you to get going on your own workout.
Good luck.
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LAURIE5658 8/7/2012 9:18AM

    Such awesomeness!!!

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COLETTEISGREAT 8/7/2012 9:12AM

    Such a great feeling! Of course now you need to find some harder classes, or design your own. Can you do a swimming workout before the class, so that you can you the whole class as your cool down?

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REGILIEH 8/7/2012 8:53AM

    WAY TO GO!!!!

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MEH50BEWELL 8/7/2012 7:09AM

    What a great feeling - to be disappointed that the class DIDN'T kick your butt. Even with your injury your body and mind knows you can do so much more. You'll never settle for just getting better -- you have already kicked some booty and I can see this injury will NOT get you down. I've been truly inspired by your protein shake blogs, I LOVE them - always have, but they seemed to have too many calories and I wasn't losing any weight so I stopped. Today I started with your choc/PB recipe for breakfast, love love love it! I have not figured out a way to have one for lunch yet (no real area at work to blend it - but I'm working on a solution) so for now - I will have my dinner (protein /veggies) for lunch and another shake during the normal dinner hour. Good Luck! and THANK YOU...

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OPTIMIST1948 8/7/2012 5:09AM

    I have never taken a water class, but I know any instructor worth their lycra can show you ways to modify moves to make them easier or harder. So I echo everyones comments to talk to the leader before the next class to explain where you are, coming from and going to, and I will bet they will be *thrilled* to help you out.

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123ELAINE456 8/7/2012 5:06AM

  You have come a long ways these past two years. You can be proud of all your accomplishments and meeting your goals. Hope you have a good time at the pool today. God Bless You and Family. Have a Wonderful Week. Take Care and Stay Cool. Keep Pushing.

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STESSEDOUT27 8/7/2012 3:43AM

    emoticon Happy to hear it was too easy! LOL That is a good idea to ask the coach what more you can do. Explain that you are doing Spark and want to lose but also share what you have been doing and what you need to achieve. They should be able to recommend something or set up a program just for you. You are so lucky to have this pool at your disposal when ever So USE it! I would in a heartbeat I wouldn't wait on a workout with the group. I start again on Wed. But the hours are awful! emoticon

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THESLIMMERME1 8/7/2012 3:13AM

    Congratulations on what you have learned todate regarding your fitness level.
I would suggest perhaps meeting with the 'coach of the water exercise class' explain your situation and see if they can suggest some alternate exercies that can be done for your level of experience. emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 8/7/2012 3:14:25 AM

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EATVEGAN 8/7/2012 1:41AM

    Fabulous!! Too fit for the fitness class. After you got over your disappointment, you must have been really over-the-top with how fit you're becoming. Wow!!! That's me in about a year or less. emoticon
Janet

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AMBER281 8/6/2012 11:17PM

    That is great to see how far you have come.
Have a great day at the pool!

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COCK-ROBIN 8/6/2012 11:12PM

    Super! I'm proud of you. I did Denise Austin's Boot Camp, and it was quite vigorous. I'm glad you're really into fitness. Isn't it great?

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SWEDE_SU 8/6/2012 11:09PM

    you've come a long way!!

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JOYCECAIN 8/6/2012 11:00PM

    Doesn't it make you feel GREAT to know that you felt that it wasn't enough! I hope you have a good swim when you get to the pool. Take care. lol

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POWERAUER 8/6/2012 10:31PM

    Yes, we can outgrow fitness classes. You should be proud and excited about breezing through the work out!

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ISABELLE31 8/6/2012 10:27PM

    I'm sorry your water workout was underwhelming, but I'm glad you have another sign of how far you've come!

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FITFOODIE806 8/6/2012 10:24PM

    I'm sorry that you were bummed out by a workout. That's no good. But holy impressive that you challenged yourself and stayed in the pool. How easy it would've been to get out when everyone else did. You are a rock star!

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KIPPER15 8/6/2012 10:22PM

    emoticon Great to be too fit for the class that once was so hard. True non-scale victory. emoticon

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JAXMOMMY 8/6/2012 10:18PM

    It may not have been as vigorous as you had hoped, but you might want to still hang around and keep trying! Something is always better than nothing and that is how I view slwoer workouts these days! But, finding time for your own routine will do wonders! Congrats! I have no doubt you will kick ass everywhere you go!

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SNEVIL1 8/6/2012 10:01PM

    Just wait... in a month you'll be teaching your own classes!!

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RUN_BAKE_BLOG 8/6/2012 9:33PM

    Needed me there with you~Just saying!

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SHERYL_B 8/6/2012 9:24PM

    Although it was disappointing initially, it has to be pretty exciting to be too strong for a class!

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TAYGRL 8/6/2012 9:20PM

    revel in your accomplishment dahlinggggg!

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SEATTLE58 8/6/2012 9:15PM

    Wow, you were really leaving everybody in the dust or pool rather, with how strong you were and feeling! That's awesome! Have fun with your girls! I'll be getting on my recumbent bike again for this day. 30 min. the first time and now we'll see how much the 2nd time. emoticon emoticon

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SEPPIESUSAN 8/6/2012 9:07PM

    I think this is great news! Both the fact that you are too fit for this class (wow!) and also that you know how to design your own workout at your level. Congrats!

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OFFICIALOLDY 8/6/2012 9:04PM

    You rock! Great job in the water -first in, last out. It is fun to surprise yourself with your fitness; it certainly is for me because it is so novel. I was doing weight machines at my gym (also a bargain at $60 a year). I was doing a ten minute sprint on the tread mill and going pretty fast (for me). I thought I had gone a mile in ten minutes and was pretty proud of myself. Later, I went back at it but noticed that, even though I was going faster the miles were not adding up. At 5 min. I was nowhere near .5 miles. I figured that I must have misread something the first time (exercise euphoria, I think) I finished the 2nd 10 min with a very respectable .65 miles - a personal best, for me. While it is a goal of mine, I can't quite believe I'm getting excited about going to the gym.
Have a good night.

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GUITARWOMAN 8/6/2012 8:56PM

    I did the treadmill for 30 minutes, slow speed to accommodate my still healing foot, did another 10 minutes of arm cycling, and did light weights for the upper body--5 exercises with 4 pound dumbells.

I am still deciding to stop with the dumbells and concentrate on the arm cycling, I get a good burn from it and my arm muscles are bigger for sure. Some sites say the arm cycling tones and strengthens the upper body, which is what I am looking for; others are not so positive.

Ah, decisions.....


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Comment edited on: 8/6/2012 8:57:36 PM

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KAREN42BOYS 8/6/2012 8:55PM

    Sounds like a big NSV to me!

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RUNNER12COM 8/6/2012 8:46PM

    Welcome to the new reality. You ARE a fit person just getting better and better.

Feels pretty darn good, doesn't it?

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Voted Popular Blog Post: View All Popular Posts

Protein Power: Day 3 - Your Questions Answered

Sunday, August 05, 2012

So, I made it through Day 3. No weight loss today, but no gain either. And, remember, I'm still at a net total loss of 2 lbs...for 3 days, that's not too bad.

Today, I decided I'd be a LOT more prepared than I was yesterday. Because I knew I'd be at church from 8:30am - Noon, I made my first shake a 400 calorie shake with extra protein and made sure I brought my Nalgene full of water WITH me this time!

I didn't take a pic of it, but this morning's shake was a test of the claim that you can't taste spinach in a protein shake. So, I made the chocolate peanut butter shake, but added spinach. (1 frozen sliced banana, 2 scoops chocolate protein powder, 1 Tbsp Ghirardelli unsweetened cocoa, 1 cup milk, 3 cups fresh baby spinach). The first sip, I thought, "You can taste the spinach a little." But, as I kept drinking, it just tasted like chocolate peanut butter...it really wasn't heavily spinach-tasting at all. It was pretty delicious actually. But...it WAS green. So, if you can't get over the idea of drinking something green...I don't know...maybe put it in a solid up with a lid and a straw? haha.

This shake had double the protein powder than I usually use. This, plus peanut butter AND spinach gave me a whopping 31g of protein!!! It was great! Along with the water, I was full all the way until lunch.

Shake #2 was my favorite from Day 2: Strawberry Chocolate Cheesecake. Mmmm. Added double protein to this one too and it was 280 calories. I drank this shake while my family literally sat at the lunch table in front of me eating fried pork chops, french fries and alfredo noodles. Although the smells were lovely, I have to admit...I felt pretty great about my choice.

Currently, I'm cooking up some homemade chicken korma, garlic naan and a fresh salad for dinner.

I have had SO many comments the past few days on this protein business and I can't imagine it's because protein is that interesting per se. I can only believe that the interest comes from legions of you who also want to try to boost your protein intake without having to drink something that tastes disgusting and makes you gag. Thus, there is a great curiosity about exactly what products I'm using that are actually making it possible for me to do this without grimacing!

MANY of you asked which protein powder I've been using. I'm NOT an expert on protein powders (heck, I don't even know what there is out there...lol...I just grabbed the cheapest one at the grocery store and also used one that happened to be sitting in my mother-in-law's pantry).

VANILLA: Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Protein



I was leary of this (the one that my mother-in-law passed on to me) because it just looked scary. Super advanced??? I don't know! And, I only used half a scoop the TWO times I used it because it is pretty high in calories actually. I get the feeling this stuff is probably more for guys that are trying to bulk up and get muscles or something. Anyway, it tasted kinda blech...you know, like most protein powders do. I blended it really well...but it was still kind of gritty. Not so awful I'd be all sick...but it wasn't my favorite.

CHOCOLATE: Aria Women's Protein (sorry, guys!)



OK, one scoop of this stuff is like HALF the size of a scoop of that vanilla gunk. And it has a lot less calories. Frankly, when I put this powder in my shakes (even TWO scoops...as I did today, kind of as a test), I could not even tell there was protein powder in there!!!! It was great!!! And the reason I bought it...besides the fact that it was JUST FOR ME as a woman...is because it was cheap. It was about $7 for that can. Everything else was in the double digits. And I was not going to spend double digits on something that might be SICK. Haha.

I think the difference in these two is the consistency. I don't know if you can see it...but I took a pic of both to try and show you how much more bulky the vanilla is. The chocolate is very powdery and fine.





So, what now? My three day trial is up and, frankly, it was pretty easy. The drinking of the shakes was no problem. They were, for the most part, DELICIOUS. Super quick and easy to make and, with planning ahead, also pretty mobile.

I certainly developed a craving and appreciation for REAL food...but my body really does feel great, like it's been cleansed a bit. I really WANT to eat healthy foods like vegetables and lean proteins. I don't know...something about consciously making a choice to replace a meal with something that intentionally has an extra load of protein in it (and maybe even spinach!) just gets me into a "This is going to be a day of healthy choices" mindset.

I think I'm going to keep going with the protein shakes...maybe just replace one meal and a snack per day with them. It's really been fun being creative and finding new flavors too.

In other news, I am actually starting deep water exercise this week. I intend to go every afternoon this week, Monday through Thursday. I can't wait to do some cardio, guys. I'm just about to jump out of my skin. I need to BURN some ENERGY!!!!!!!

Hope you enjoyed this smoothie foray...back to regularly scheduled programming tomorrow.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOANNHUNT 11/17/2012 8:51PM

    emoticon emoticon for the protein shake ideas. emoticon emoticon

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CHUM48 10/9/2012 10:29PM

    thanks for the info!

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JPEARL127 8/9/2012 7:44AM

  I have a protein shake every day at lunch time, adding things like yogurt and fresh fruit to my Juice Plus Protein powder and using a liquid base like kefir, soy milk, Island Oasis, or Fusion. I have a hard time getting enough protein eating three meals, so I guess that the protein shake is my best shot at adding protein without adding lots of calories. And it makes me feel good about my choices! I'm glad to hear that you have also decided to make the power shake part of your daily regimen!

I really love reading your blog entries....they are so inspiring and easy to read!

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DOTTIESPLACE 8/8/2012 11:33PM

    Awesome! I am reading Chris Powell's "Chhose to Lose" and he talks about using protein powder. Can't thank you enough for sharing this info!

You rock!

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TLSTERLING01 8/8/2012 2:33PM

    I love protein shakes. (Especially good after a workout at the gym. Less soreness for me) I drink mine on the way home from the gym. Also curbs my appetite until dinner. I use one scoop of the Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Protein in chocolate.

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PRIZM96 8/8/2012 2:15PM

    I am a HUUUUUUUUGE fan of protein shakes! In fact, I have one, sometimes two every day and love it! I miss it, when I don't have one. I do use the top picture though. LOL Only in Chocolate. Body Fortress Super Advanced Whey Protein-Chocolate is my all-time favorite! :-) I only use one scoop of powder and a "spoonful" of peanut butter. YUMMMY!
I have often wondered about using spinach in them, if you could taste it or not. But now, after reading your blog, I think I'll give it a try!

Thanks! :-)

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JANISBECK 8/8/2012 9:46AM

  might just have to break down and give it a try- I too have a jar (tub, vat ????) of protein powder on the pantry shelf giving me "use me" winks when I walk by. thanks for making me believe it's possible to enjoy emoticon

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ESME25 8/8/2012 9:00AM

    emoticon great flavor ideas!

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DOTTY7267 8/8/2012 8:20AM

    emoticon

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PAMTHER 8/8/2012 7:13AM

    You're so brave emoticon

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MODUPSIE 8/8/2012 3:15AM

    emoticon FOR THE GOOD INFO

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FUSIONFITNESS3 8/8/2012 2:34AM

    Here's one for the protein shakes. Try Kale---one of the girls at the gym does this. I've tasted it and it's not bad.
Hope you enjoy the deep water fitness as much as I do. I go three times a week and love the cardio and all over body workout you get. emoticon

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CCHEF1 8/8/2012 12:38AM

    I love protein shakes also. Great blog!

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SOCDIRECTOR 8/7/2012 11:09PM

    emoticon

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CAROL494 8/7/2012 10:07PM

  emoticon emoticon

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DONNA5281 8/7/2012 9:10PM

 

You did a good job! I don't think I would have made it.


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MANILUS 8/7/2012 8:53PM

    Glad you made it through and it wasn't too bad! I know what you mean about sitting around and wanting to get back into exercise. Hope you enjoy the pool and work hard!

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JULIA1154 8/7/2012 8:29PM

  Thanks for keeping us supplied with some great ideas! Enjoy your deep water workouts - that sounds really good right now!

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LILSPARKIE85 8/7/2012 7:10PM

    emoticon

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SERASARA 8/7/2012 5:56PM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CUDDLYPOLARBEAR 8/7/2012 5:17PM

    Thanks for sharing

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ONEATATIME3 8/7/2012 3:53PM

  GREAT! Your 3 days protein shakes has inspired many & I swapped my lunch yesterday for your strawberry shake & I was all smile! Thanks!

All this things apart what got my attention was your family's lunch--You are trying soo hard to eat healthy, is fried pork, french fries & alfredo fettucini healthy for your family? Can they see what you are going thru to be healthy?
Just worried for SPARK FRIEND who is inspiring all. emoticon

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TANYAP71 8/7/2012 3:09PM

    What is the protein source in the women's protein powder (whey? soy? something else?)?

I actually REALLY like protein shakes. I just get tired of them and forget about my bag of whey and reach for a clif builder bar instead. I can get TWICE as much protein for just a few more calories doing a shake so thanks for the reminder! I even tried your sugar-free pudding powder trick. It was a nice flavor change and altered the texture some too.

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LEB0401 8/7/2012 1:32PM

    You've inspired me to make a smoothie for my post-workout snack! THANKS

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GUDDIGO 8/7/2012 1:30PM

  Not sure I can do it....but good for you

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TMOORE073 8/7/2012 12:07PM

    Ok Ignore my recent post about the protein powder. Just got my answer from reading your post. Ha ha I will definetely try the women's protein powder! There is another one to that is for women that I heard was good. Spirutein they have it in 3 different favors. I hope your water aerobics are going good today! Have a good week!

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TIMETOMOVEIT 8/7/2012 11:20AM

  Way to go! i started by having a chocolate, strawberry, bana shake this morning. I used the Myoplex protein whey powder in chocolate. waiting to see how long it keeps me full. emoticon

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MAUISPIRIT 8/7/2012 11:16AM

    I use Jay Robb's .... 1 scoop has 25 grams of whey isolate protein. I add nonfat yogurt (Nancy's) and frozen berries (blue or black) and I'm still under 250 calories. What I find is that a lot of the protein powders have a lot of sugars and carbs in them, which most of us are trying to limit. Jay Robb's is EXTREMELY low in both. He uses stevia (which normally I don't like but I can't taste it). It is EXPENSIVE. I just bought 2 80-oz bags, and it was $274! But they last months because you only need 1 scoop per serving. And it tastes good!

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DMVILLANO 8/7/2012 11:09AM

  Thanks for the info! :)

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AVERYMOM96 8/7/2012 10:26AM

    Good for you in maintaining consistency!!! Hang in there! Sundays are hard for me, too, because the family expects a bigger family dinner after church.

I use the Body by Vi shakes, and they are awesome! http://518529.bodybyvi.com/ I find they are also great to keep the late afternoon snacking urges at bay, too!


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DUSTYPRAIRIE 8/7/2012 10:11AM

    Interesting experiment. Good it worked for you.

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JLEMUS1 8/7/2012 9:50AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SJKENT1 8/7/2012 9:27AM

    emoticon

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HEALTHIERMAMA57 8/7/2012 8:43AM

    very interesting.......thanks! Have a good week! emoticon

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THETROUT 8/7/2012 8:37AM

    emoticon

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ANDRAYAYA 8/7/2012 8:32AM

    emoticon for sharing!

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JAZZEJR 8/7/2012 7:42AM

    Thanks for the great info. I enjoyed the additional comments too. If you just want to add more protein to your diet in the morning, but are not in the mood for a shake, I mix the vanilla flavor with water and use it instead of milk with my oatmeal. (Recipe in my collection on SP).

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WISDOM73 8/7/2012 7:39AM

    I have shakes too on occasion. I usually have them with milk but I am on a meal plan that has cut away dairy for a week. So had it with water: not good at all. I like to add either fresh fruit or frozen mixed berries. It is a good option when on the go or after training. Enjoy the pool!

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CSNOW71 8/7/2012 6:06AM

    I bought the first one (Super Advance Whey Protein) to use in a recipe for protein bars (www.bodybuilding.com/.../jamie-eas
ons-livefit-recipes...) but I still haven't tried the recipe yet. It doesn't taste that great as a shake by itself that's for sure!!
I love that you're trying new things and sharing it with us!!

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POMBIKISAN 8/7/2012 3:07AM

  Whey Protein (Whey Isolate is recommended) should be used as a post work out (15- 30 mins) protein to help in muscle recovery/repair/build. Casein Protein is great supplement for curbing hunger/cravings, it's time released. Best used as a pre bed time shake if you're performing intensive workouts. Casein is more expensive. You should get most of your protein from natural food sources. emoticon

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BLUEJEAN99 8/7/2012 1:49AM

    emoticon

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ARTJAC 8/7/2012 12:14AM

    emoticon

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TUBLADY 8/6/2012 11:35PM

    I drink protein fruit and veggie shakes almost everyday.
There is some real difference in protein powders. I always buy the medical quality.. I order them on line.
I want to know just what is in the powder. If I have to buy one off the shelf, Costco has a good one. And in a pinch I once bought some by Jillian Michaels,. But I usually stick with Injury, or Walkers. They have delicious flavors and mixed up with ice or frozen fruit and skim milk, taste just like thick milkshakes.
I add flax seed and other things too.
I workout a lot and a good protein shake in the morning gives me all the engery and nutrients that I need to carry me through a morning of intense exercise.
Be positive and stay strong.
Tisha emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JAMER123 8/6/2012 11:12PM

    So glad you are doing well with the trial! Thanks for the tip about the protein powders. I will have to check into the ingredients in them besides protein.
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SWEDE_SU 8/6/2012 11:06PM

    what you are making sounds awfully close to green smoothies - and you could try branching out to other greens besides spinach, like chard or kale or even collards. a great way to add protein "naturally" (rather than a powder) is to add white beans - you can't taste them at all, but they give the same protein boost. enjoy!

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JOYCECAIN 8/6/2012 11:05PM

    Someday I will have to try one. Glad you are doing well. lol

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MAMAWALMART 8/6/2012 10:43PM

    I hope it works for you.

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MARYJEANSL 8/6/2012 8:22PM

  I'm glad things are going so well with the protein shakes. Very interesting.

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NEWCHINELO 8/6/2012 7:35PM

    love the blog.

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GRANDMA_SANDY48 8/6/2012 7:23PM

    Thanks for posting the protein powder - I am in OZ so will check out the supermarkets here. I heard someone say they make their own shake with skim milk, fruit, yoghurt and 1/2 cup of rolled oats. I tried this - quite YUM. emoticon

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