Saturday, June 18, 2011
Our bonus challenge this week was to share a recipe swap out that we've done and one of mine that I love to do every month, during that time when I crave peanut butter and chocolate, is these Frozen Peanut Butter Cups (Spark recipe submitted by: JGAUSTIN)
They are amazing. The link to the recipe is at the bottom if you want to make them and add them to your tracker.
1/3 c peanut butter
1 1/2 c fat free whipped topping
3 tbsp chocolate syrup
Mix 1c whipped topping and peanut butter
Fold in additional whipped topping
Divide into 12 lined muffin cups
top with drop of chocolate syrup
Number of Servings: 10
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
MAIN CHALLENGE: For the main challenge this week, take some time for yourself! Do something special, just for you, that you've been thinking about but haven't followed through on. I know we all have so many responsibilities, but sometimes taking time for ourselves is the best way to ensure we can get through all of that without pulling our hair out!!
Yesterday, after a long day at work (don’t you love Mondays?) I got picked up by my husband as my brakes were being worked on. Our two girls were in the car (where else would they be haha) and something happens in my household around 5 PM. Like werewolves after midnight, my girls go CRAZY. (For some reason my dogs do, too, and have even before we had kids.) They all go gaga for me. They freak out, act up, and do anything and everything in their power to get my 100%, COMPLETE ATTENTION. This may sound flattering, but it truly is not. It’s like having raw meat strapped to your body and being in a field of rapid dogs.
Joking aside, it really drains a person. And being in a hot car, in traffic that doesn’t seem to move, for 48 minutes (yes I counted) is just brutal. Two time outs on the side of the road later and one meltdown, and we are finally back home.
I had plans to go walking with my oldest daughter…plans to even bring the little one along and walk to the library, get them signed up for the summer reading program, get a workout in, get some girl bonding time.
But after that car ride I walked in the door, took a look around, and announced that I was NOT taking either of them in public – anywhere – and I sent them outside to play while I made dinner and my hubby worked on the car.
I had plans, great big Mommy plans…the walk, the library, coming home and doing nice baths, a story or two. No plans for ME, but plans for them. And yes, I do like spending time with them, but last night was a different story.
A quick dinner later, a few more time outs and refereeing fights, and I was DONE. Up to bed and a few stories later and that was it. I looked around. It was barely past 7 p.m. I had all of this…TIME. I thought about all of the story drafts sitting on my office desk….I decided I would go to the library after all…just by myself.
I grabbed my writing bag, kissed hubby goodbye (and sort of felt like I was escaping, but pushing that feeling aside)...I even stopped at Dunkin’ Donuts for my favorite French Vanilla coffee. Oh, this was going to be GOOD. The smell of the coffee in the car hit my senses and I was already daydreaming about the writing I would do. The writing I had missed for the past months….it is just so hard to make time for yourself when you work full time, am a Mom, a wife, the bill keeper, organizer, party and play date planner….where did I fit in with all of that? I’ve been great about making time for working out (usually before the girls are awake or after they are asleep). But where was my creativity going to bloom if I didn’t give it a place to grow?
I got to the library and first signed the kids up for the summer reading program, like a good Mommy, and THEN. THEN it was all about ME. I got a quiet cubicle away from the children’s library. I opened the lid of my coffee. And I WROTE. I wrote for about 45 minutes. It felt amazing.
And after I wrote I took a minute to read a chapter from one of my summer reading books, a guilty pleasure.
And I didn’t even bring my cell phone into the library. I left it in the car.
Things could wait. People could wait. Me? I’ve been waiting long enough. It was time for me.
I’ve decided that I’m going to write 5 days out of the week, and 8 or 9 p.m. seems to be a good time, after the girls are sleeping.
And I even got more miles in after I got home.
It was just amazing. I felt like my old self again, the self before I had kids….and I’m honoring the writer within me.
“Planning to write is not writing. Outlining, researching, talking to people about what you're doing, none of that is writing. Writing is writing.”
E. L. Doctorow
"Empowerment is what the emerging artist needs to win for herself. And the initial sense of urgency to create can easily be dissipated because it entails making the one choice many people, especially women, in our society with its emphasis on the 'acceptable' priorities, feel selfish about making: taking the time to create, stealing it from yourself if it's the only way."
-- "5:00 A.M.: Writing as Ritual" in The Latin Deli by Judith Ortiz Cofer, p. 168 (reprinted in Sleeping With One Eye Open)
Sunday, June 12, 2011
I didn't work out much this past week at all, my tail bone has been hurting me ever since my daughter hopped into bed with me and I slept strangely all night. Now this pain has GOT to go away because it's been keeping me from doing things that I want and need to do. Running? Nope. Volunteering with my church at a local nursing home? Nope. Dancing at my friend's wedding? Nope, nope and nope. I don't have $$ to see a chiropractor again, I've used up all my health benefit for a chiropractor.
So, while I want to kick butt and really push it this week, I am also going to be aware of my body and treating it well. I'm going to try to recover from this pain that's been keeping me from the things I love, and also do things that will help my body heal. My original title for this blog was going to be "Smackdown Weekly Plan", but then that didn't sound very gentle to me. So I changed it to "Move it, Move it" because the goal this week is just to MOVE. If I feel OK enough to push it further, great, but my body needs movement now. The longer I'm sitting on the couch hoping my back feels better the longer it will take to heal.
a.m. Wake up and walk 2 miles with Leslie
mid-day - stretches at work to stretch back out. Use resistance bands if possible.
p.m. Evening yoga
Apply heat/ice as needed, off and on every 20 minutes.
a.m. Start with stretching and ease into strength training
lunch: walk on treadmill at work. If back feels OK run a litle.
p.m. Try to make it to Zumba.
a.m. Start with stretching and then a run
lunch: walk at lunch
a.m. Walk 3 miles with Leslie
lunch: get up and move
p.m. try to make it to Zumba
a.m. sleep in
p.m. strength training then relax
start of 10k training with running group
p.m. evening yoga
Tuesday, June 07, 2011
Here's the challenge for this week:
MAIN CHALLENGE: Most of us probably have a number of non scale victories, even if we aren’t to our goals yet. This week, reflect on those gains. Have you had health gains so far in your journey as a result of the changes you’ve made? Is your blood pressure down, or maybe your off some medications, or your asthma has improved? Maybe you’ve moved from obese to overweight? Share a health gain that you have made so far in your journey with your team for the main challenge this week. Also share a health goal that you have, that you have yet to achieve, and some things you will do to make it an accomplishment in the future.
Now I am a BIG advocate of Non Scale Victories, or NSVs as we call them here at Spark. In fact, that is the only thing that gets me through the month sometimes, especially when my loss is slow. So for this week’s challenge it was fun to see just how far I’ve come in my journey at Spark.
Here are my major NSVs:
When I first started out on this journey 3 years ago when I did the online “Real Age” test, it said that my Real Age was 44 years old. I remember thinking…my gosh….and then I actually felt relief that it didn’t say I was 50 – imagine that! Relief that it was saying I was over 10 years older than what I was….
I retested myself the other day and my "Real Age" is now 33 years old and I am 36 years old. (Soon to be 37, but shh…). I'm actually getting younger!
I went from being above a 45 (over VERY obese) to being under 35, which is only obese, to 32.4, which is ALMOST just overweight. It is my goal to be under 30, and then finally under 25, which is my ideal weight.
VO2 is a measure of how much oxygen your body can consume during maximum intensity exercise. I started off two years ago and my score was so bad it literally was not on the chart. It was 21.1. My boot camp instructor had to draw a line way below the worst on the chart and say “you are here.”
Since then I went up to 24.7, which was still Very Poor, but at least on the chart. From there I went to a 31, which is “Fair”, and I’m happy to report that NOW I am at a 34, which is actually deemed "GOOD"!!!
Now I am working toward "Excellent", which is a score of 35.7 and up.
I gained much of my weight the first year of being married. Maybe it was the stress, maybe it was that I was too happy, content, whatever it was, my wedding ring, the antique set that I loved - didn't fit me after a year of being married. It was so unfair. My understanding hubby said I should just take it in and get it resized (I just love that man). My stubborn nature said, no. If I couldn't get back down to the size that I was when I was married, then ppfft. Forget it. Well I am happy to say that not only does my wedding set fit me now, BUT....dare I say it is a tiny bit LOOSE.
Other major NSVs include:
Pants – went from a size 26 to a size 14/16, or from a size 3XL to a L.
Jeans – went from a size 28 to a size 16. I would like to be a 10/12 eventually.
Shirts – went from a size 24 to a size 14, or from a size 3XL to a size M.
Bra – went from a size F to a triple D and finally down to a respectable C cup, lol.
Running – went from being a non-runner to running 5 5ks last year and 1 8k this year with plans to run 2 10ks this year and a 15k as well. I eventually plan to run a half marathon.
Smile factor - in every picture I am now smiling - in the past I was not. 100% improvement!
Spiritually - I have found myself and don't feel lost anymore. I feel I have a purpose.
Happiness - Oh my, I went from being depressed and not ever wanting to get off the couch to being a happy, vibrant person. I am now fun to be around, and not only when I was drunk, like before.
Energy - I now have loads of it! And I need it with 2 young kids!
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