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I need to live!

Monday, August 08, 2011

All my life I have been "good". From counseling, I know I am trying to be perfect. For my parent's to love and adore me. They will if I am perfect, right? Um, not exactly...

When growing up my mom expected me to not fight with my sisters. I never drank or any illegal drugs. I tried to be the best.

Even with my weight loss, I tried to be perfect. I couldn't go over calories, not even 5. I couldn't take a day of rest. Nope. I had to be perfect.

In the last few days, something happened. I no longer have to be perfect.

Or, maybe I don't want to be perfect. emoticon

My most recent ex-boyfriend is going to be moving into the halls, FOUR doors from me. We have been chatting and it sounds like he wants to be kinda like friends with benefits. I am seeing no real good coming out of this but the other side of me? Well, they are saying.. do it. Have fun and live, Savannah.

Because you know what? I haven't lived.

I have been hiding behind 100 pounds of extra weight and have held myself back. I haven't dated much, haven't really gone anywhere until I was 23, and really haven't done anything that I wasn't supposed to.

I need to live.

In January, I am going to be getting on an airplane all by myself for the very FIRST time to do a half marathon in Mississippi! Honestly, this is scary for me. To get on a plane alone. To go to a brand new city. To depend on only ME. To meet three Spark Friends.

But, I need to live!

After some thought, I realized I need to explore and see this world with myself or with friends before I can settle down. Part of me wants to date, but the other part, wants to have fun, be adventurous, and LIVE.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GETFIT2LIVE 8/10/2011 2:13PM

    Choose you and what you need to do for yourself; be smart about your choices, but also do not let fear rule your life. So excited for you to do the 1/2 in MS, that is going to be an amazing experience!

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MSJULES01 8/9/2011 7:06PM

    You go Girl...Good luck on the 1/2 marathon.

You have to keep us posted.

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BOJO70 8/9/2011 3:14PM

  LIVE! I didn't start until late too, but when I did I made up for it! I had fun and cried and laughed and enjoyed just living by my own barometer.

One word of caution: I did the FWB thing with a very good friend. We survived it after it ended only because I was too stubborn to give up on the friendship. He thought I would hate him when he found a stable relationship with someone and just thought he would walk away. I wasn't mad. I was happy for him. I wasn't jealous, I knew going in I didn't want to be with him in a long-term capacity. Keep it in perspective and set ground rules for yourself, mentally and emotionally.

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PATRICIAANN46 8/9/2011 2:20PM

  Hi Savannah.........
One of my biggest regrets is that I didn't take the time to do the following 3 things BEFORE I got married.
1. I didn't travel.
2. I didn't live by myself for at least one year.
3. I didn't have my OWN money and spend it the way I wanted to.

I love my husband, but I married him one week after I graduated from college. You are only YOUNG once and never as free. Do what YOU want to and do it FOR YOU, for no one else. Just be very aware of who you do it with so that you don't have regrets that you may have to live with the rest of your life. Well..........I did it again. The last sentence turned me into your mother and you already have one.....sorry.
Have fun!!!

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    Whatever you decide to do, as long as you are happy, then it will be fine! Have a blast in Mississippi!

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STRIPEDTIGER 8/9/2011 11:21AM

    Whatever you do, do it for you. Do it because you want to, it's your choice, it's your benefit to reap or your price to pay.

Answer to yourself. If it isn't worth it to you, don't.

You are beholding to no one and you can't make anyone feel how you want them to about your decisions.

I learned this lesson the hard way.

Live to your own standards. emoticon emoticon

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BAILEYS7OF9 8/9/2011 10:26AM

    cool! The MS 1/2 sounds fun! I used to drive to MN all the time by myself for dog shows. emoticon

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ADVENTURE361 8/8/2011 10:46PM

    Travel is its own teacher and you will learn things you never imagined. Your 20s is the right time to do it also. This is the time to travel, learn about yourself and find out who you are. Trust me I traveled to Europe and across the US all thru my 20s and now in my 40s Im glad I did it.
Dont be afraid just be aware of your surroundings and always have a good head on your shoulder. Good luck!

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Wow - I've lost 37.5 inches!

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Okay, I created a strength training program yesterday for myself to get me motivated for strength training, something in which I'd rather hit my head against a brick wall than do.

Than, today I made myself a challenge.

In the challenge document, it has pictures of me in my near nakedness (something you folks won't ever see), but also my measurements for 2009, 2010 and than a spot for where I put the current stats. I did it this way because I get down when I do not lose any inches and I wanted to put a positive spin on it.

Let's look at the stats for the past 3 years, shall we?


Starting weight: 260

Waist: 50.75
Hips: 55.75
Thighs: 23.0
Calf: 17.5
Arms: 14.0


Current weight: 160.2

Waist: 37.75
Hips: 41.5
Thighs: 19.0
Calf: 14.5
Arms: 11.0

Lost weight: 100 pounds

Waist: -13.0
Hips: -14.25
Thighs: -4.0
Calf: -3.0
Arms: -3.0

Total of inches lost: -37.25"

Basically, that is what my waist is currently!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GREENMAMA 8/8/2011 1:51PM

    Wow, that's pretty exciting. Congrats on your progress.

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JUSTBIRDY 8/8/2011 1:16PM


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1CRAZYDOG 8/8/2011 9:21AM

    You are a strong person! Keep movin' and groovin' my dear!!! You're beautiful inside and out.


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TAMTAMM 8/8/2011 8:33AM

    Amazing work!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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HANNAHV 8/8/2011 8:30AM

    emoticonWOW! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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STITCHINGNAN 8/8/2011 7:38AM

I had to smile as at the side of your blog was an ad for CORSETS. It mut have been picked up that you were talking of your measuraments. YOu are half the person you were in size but probabley twice as healthy and active Well done Irene emoticon

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LEAHOBI 8/8/2011 5:22AM

    emoticon emoticon You lost over a yard! Personally, so happy to see that it is possible to shrink thighs. haha

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EGRAMMY 8/7/2011 9:26PM

    emoticon Great luck on your challenge.

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CMHARRISON12 8/7/2011 9:17PM

    Great job! The numbers show how successful you are and will continue to be! emoticon

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DELERIOUS64 8/7/2011 8:22PM

    You lost a small person!! Don't dread strength training, it can make a huge difference. I was doing lengthy high rep workouts and there was that definite dread factor to them because they were so long. I recently started doing Chalean Extreme which is lifting heavy and slowly but the workouts are right around 30 mts and I love it. And I can definitely tell a difference in my body and my strength

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BEGAINANEW 8/7/2011 7:15PM

    Wow you are doing great. congrats on the weight lost. You are a inspiration. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Strength Training -- How do you set that goal?

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Thank you everyone for the input on my last blog, "Now what?" Many suggested that I make some goals for strength training. Now this is a great idea.

But, how?

When my focus was on my weight. It was easy. I just had to pick a number. I focused on each pound, at 10 pounds at a time. I didn't focus on the big picture of losing 100 pounds even through it was in the back of my mind. That would be just too overwhelming. In fact, I didn't even focus on a pant size. I just wanted to be smaller.

In the past, when strength training was a goal, the goal was to just DO it because I despise with such a passion.

I think I need a more specific goal when it comes to strength training. But, I don't know how to create a more specific goal.

Like, how does one measure it?

It does help but how often and who will take these photos? I want to see the toning and you can't do that with clothes on. Getting the drift?

Measuring tape?
Taking measurements doesn't always show that I am toned. For example, my legs have became more toned since running but they have stayed the same size.

Picking a pant size?
This won't work for me because pant size vary from store to store. In other words, I do not feel like it would be a consistent way to measure. Even brands that I love, I have found are inconsistent.

Aiming to increase the weight I can lift?
Now that might work. I could focus on lifting for the next dumbbell and the next and the next... until I am emoticon. This might work because I can focus on a concrete number and it is in my control.

Okay, now that we have figured out how I am going to measure... now I decide how I am going to lift.


In the beginning, I used weight machines. They were fine but now I am incredibly bored by them. I have been trying to learn more about free weights. That seems to be working. I feel like I have been just dipping my toe into it. It's time I get a little more wet with them.

So, I think I am going to make some concrete plans that separate my lifting between muscle group. In other words, it is time to get serious about free weight training.

Also, I seem to like to do things where I can throw things, like medicine balls and kettlebells. So, time to get friendly with google to find new ways to work out with a medicine ball and save my pennies for an unlimited month of kettlebell classes.

One last thing...
I have been doing my strength training after my cardio. Should I keep it there or do it in between my cardio or before cardio? I find if I do it after, I have less motivation. If I do it in between, I tend to lose motivation/time for cardio. If I do it before cardio, I get inpatient for my endorphin high. (And, yes, I am a cardio junkie!)

Okay! I think we got it all figured out... thanks for listening and helping me!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PATRICIAANN46 8/7/2011 4:32PM

  Hi Savannah.........
When I started ST, I started with my core because of back problems. I worked with a physical therapist, who showed me the correct way to train and how to measure success. Do you still work? Is there a person there who is an expert on ST? You could consult with him/her and set up a program for yourself based on your personal needs. Anyone I have ever talked to re: ST stressed the importance of a strong core and then going on to other parts of your body after you have strengthened your core. We are all different in what areas of our body we want to work on. I would get professional input and go on from there.
As dedicated as you are, I am sure that you will be successful with ST too.

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1CRAZYDOG 8/7/2011 9:33AM

    Great blog! Yes, for me with ST, I increase the # of reps as it becomes less challenging, change up the exercises I do (check out the list of ST exercises here on SP if you haven't already), and when the # of reps gets easy, time to increase the weights.

As for vardio or ST first . . . I find that I have to do cardio first. If I don't I run into the exact problem as you . . . I'm not motivated to do the cardio.

Good luck, and you can do this!!!



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CYNTHIAMINUS40 8/6/2011 9:37PM

    You bring up a good point. I've been strength training on and off for the better part of 20 years. Sometimes when I don't feel like doing cardio I can get by with half an hour of strength training and I feel like I did something good for my body.

I've never really set a goal so your blog made that little Ah Ha go off in my head. It never occured to me to set a goal with this phase of working out. I've always looked at it as a more preventive measure - I don't want my butt to fall, I don't want my underarm flap to wave when I wave my hand, I want to see the definition in my legs when I wear shorts or a skirt.

You'll find what works for you in all of this. Just the fact that you reached that goal in your weight loss tells me that you've got this one in the bag.

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HDHAWK 8/6/2011 9:33PM

    Either do weights first, or put 4 hrs. between cardio and weights. You can measure and from those measurements you can figure out your bodyfat %. That's a great way to tell whether you're losing fat and gaining muscle. You can find calculators on line. The Navy formula is a popular one. It usually comes out higher than when you get measured with calipers, but as long as it's moving down, it doesn't really matter. You could take pics with your phone in shorts/sports bra or 2 pc. bathing suit. Lots of people take them in a mirror. Good luck!

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FRENCHTOSD 8/6/2011 8:46PM

    I set up the ST from Spark People on "my Fitness". Then I try to do so many different exercises per day.

I also focus on lots of reps with low weight. Instead of trying to increase the weight, I increase the reps or sets. I'm hoping that will let me get stronger without bulking up.

Good Luck with your plan.

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    Gee, I was going to say to set a goal of increasing the number of reps you could do for each exercise. Seems like you know what you are doing. Go for it.

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Now what?

Friday, August 05, 2011

I have been struggling of finally reaching my big goal of losing 100#. I thought I would be all emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon but in all actuality I am more like emoticon.

I feel like a lost soul.

For the last three years, I have been so focused on my goal but now it seems like it has up and vanished. Like I have no big goal to chip away at. I am used to juggling school, work, running and my personal growth. Just call me Superwoman.

But, what happens when I no longer need to lose weight or work on my personal growth?

Right now, I am at 160. I think I want to get down to 140, a healthy weight, according to BMI calculations. I will still continue to work on my weight loss.. mainly because I am scared of maintenance. This new goal of 140 is more like if I get there, fine. If I don't, that's cool, too.

What if I do gain the weight back?

I am terrified of this. I don't have the same motivation I had in the beginning of my journey. I sure don't want to put all that hard work and effort into it again. Honest, but true. I feel like I was lucky that this happened now rather when I had a full-time career, a significant other, or children. I could figure out ME before taking care of everyone else.

During the last few days, I have sabotaging myself. emoticon It's not cool, at all. Yesterday, I ate a whole box of dots.

Okay, let's put this in perspective. Not a huge deal. But, it IS if I keep up this behavior. I think I have been sabotaging myself so I wouldn't have to deal with answering the question: "Now what?" Also, than reaching my goal isn't real.

I know it wasn't entirely self-sabotage but also, partly eating my feelings. I was feeling pretty anxious and lonely last night. I am better now, after going to counseling. Counseling forces me to face the music that I don't want to face alone.

In addition to all this, for some reason, I thought I would be all toned. But, hold up, Savannah, you haven't been strength training. So, that means one of my expectations, having a flat tummy, did not come with the scale saying 160.

I have concluded that I need to strength train more consistent. But, honestly, for me, it is harder to see the results. It is not as easy as stepping on the scale. But, rather I need someone else to take a photo of me. Or, I need to take measurements which cannot be done everyday.

Okay, this was random.. but this is how my thoughts are today.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

1CRAZYDOG 8/7/2011 9:28AM

    Oh, my dear Savannah. Maintenance IS hard work . . . maybe harder work than losing. BUT for me, I always think to myself that nothing tastes as good as being healthy feels. So, that's uppermost in my mind. Sabotaging is something I think everyone experiences.

Maybe hiking up the strength training would help. I do maintain my walking . . . trying to increase the distance just a little bit weekly. But with the strength training, I definitely have to kick myself in the butt to do it. It's not my favorite thing to do, but I need it to maintain muscle tone and strength.

So, just know you're not alone. You've done such a marvelous job and you can do this!!!!



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PATRICIAANN46 8/6/2011 4:25PM

  Hi Savannah.........
You have come so far and accomplished so much!!!!! Like you, I need goals to keep on track. You mentioned that you need to begin to strength-train. Could you list that as your next goal and assess it with measurements to keep on track? Just some thoughts.
I really can't imagine you sliding backward. I think that you are too motivated by what you have accomplished.
I wish you the very best.

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CIVIAV 8/6/2011 8:50AM

    I've been saving your blog to find the right comment. I guess I don't really have one other than what you have accomplished is amazing and now it's time to learn to live with it. Living scares the living daylights out of me! LOL.

Savannah you are without a doubt living and now it's time to live large instead of be large! Hope this comment lands the right way up!

The strength training in my world is coming along but very slowly. It seems like it would be a good next place to create some fast break goals for yourself but only if it really does seem like the next stretch step.


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RHONDALYN10 8/6/2011 7:49AM

    I think the best part is that you have found you are not alone with these feelings. You will figure it all out in time. So proud of how far you have come! Keep up the great work!

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FRENCHTOSD 8/6/2011 12:11AM

    You're killing me these days, girl - I swear it's me writing these.

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CRISSYCURRY 8/5/2011 9:33PM

    I completely understand how you feel. That's the main reason why, when I hit my first goal weight, I continued to lose weight. I was terrified of maintenance, terrified of eating more. So far, I've managed to maintain my 83-pound weight loss for 10 months now. You CAN do it!! Hang in there and good luck my friend!! And congrats on the 100 lb weight loss!!

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DELERIOUS64 8/5/2011 9:06PM

    I totally know what you mean. I hit my goal of 160 2 years ago and have been struggling since then to decide if I want to continue with my weight loss or not. I have always been overweight and it seems like all my life I was trying to lose weight that I didn't really know how to maintain. At one point I got down to 152 but have been maintaing between 155-160 for quite some time. Part of my struggle was as you mentioned, if I didn't have a goal I was afraid I would just go back to my old eating habits. But I have come to far to ever go back. Maintenance CAN be done. Is it a struggle? At times but there's times when I think of how good I feel and look now that makes it all worth it and there's many days that it's not a struggle at all.

I have decided that I want to break that 150 mark so I am going to continue on. For the most part I'm happy with my body now but like I said I need that goal.

Comment edited on: 8/5/2011 9:08:04 PM

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EGRAMMY 8/5/2011 6:45PM

    emoticon emoticon The hard part is just about to begin. The last 10 or 20 pounds and then the maintainence. You will need your goals, support, plans more tha ever. Best wishes to you and your lifetime journey.

Congratulations on losing so much. Best wishes on keeping it off. e are cheering for you as you do it one day at a time. Do the next right thing. And we all hope we'll have the courage to do wht you have done in to your goal.

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HDHAWK 8/5/2011 6:10PM

    I find maintenance to be the hardest part of weight loss. I haven't accomplished it yet. I was within 4 lbs. of my goal and have now gained nearly all the weight back. Focus on lifting weights and getting toned. You'll lose inches if you do. Take a little time to focus on your next goal. I understand where you're coming from. I feel like I have to be busy all the time and when I'm not I eat too much!

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    You know it is really hard to maintain a weight loss. That is your new mountain to climb there. Set a 5 pound range and make sure you stay within that range for the next month. If you can do that, and not go over; then move on to losing more weight. See a lot of people lose weight - but it isn't considered true loss until you have maintained for a year or more. Hope I gave you a new mountain to climb.

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GETFIT2LIVE 8/5/2011 5:36PM

    Ahhh, I SO understand where you're coming from! I'm not down quite as far but getting close to my original goal of losing 100 pounds; I have been having those fears and feelings, too. I don't think we will either one gain it back because we've been going about this the right way--making lifestyle changes. Still, that fear is there. Seems to me like it's time to set some new non-weight-related goals; there are always new mountains to climb, new challenges to stretch toward. Remind me that when I get down a little more and start saying those same things, okay? I have a feeling I will forget!


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I was afraid to reach my huge milestone.

Monday, August 01, 2011

Recently, I have reached a huge milestone of losing 100#. In the past few days, I have reflected alot about this.

I am going to write about how I have been afraid about reaching this milestone but did it anyway. Why am I writing this? Because I wish someone wrote this for me when I was 250, 200, 170.

So, back to how I was afraid to reach this huge milestone.

"What if I can't?
What if I don't?
What if I do?
Than, what will do?"

This was my basic thought pattern. It was a scary cycle. But, you know, the most scary part was doing it anyhow even though I had no idea what I would look like when I reached it. The professionals says to envision your goal.

But... what if you can't?

I couldn't. I didn't know what 160 looked like because I have never been 160. In fact, when I look in the mirror, I don't see myself as 160. I saw that I was smaller but I still saw ME. Part of me was afraid that ME was going to slip away as soon as I reached the scale said "160". Let me in on a secret it doesn't. I am still the same person I was.

Sure, I have changed.

But, those changes are ones I purposely made with effort and hard work. Everyday. I worked on them. I know they are there. Some magic fairy didn't come along and made an unwanted change in me. No, I changed myself to be who I want to me.

So, what is the lesson in all this?

It is OKAY to be afraid. Really. Accept it. Own it. Work through it. But, whatever you do, do NOT let it own YOU. You are better than the fear.

And, just remember YOU can do this! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EJOY-EVELYN 6/15/2012 1:58PM

    While I remember the Stinger covered your remarkable story of success, did you ever follow-up with SPJOHNH and submit the Q&A and photos they requested? He's been following up regularly with a number of us (but I tell myself -- and naturally, I believe it -- that I cannot handle the celebrity that may come with it). I'm quite conflicted about this -- love the recognition yet prefer to handle it in smaller doses.

Oh how great it is to look back on how it felt when we first "lost it all." Seems we lose a bit of that high when time passes. I am at a bit of a cross roads -- teetering on the highs and lows of being both good and bad. I'm actually looking forward to my next SparkTeam challenge with the 5% group as I suspect I'll be ready to lose (once again) the 5-lb cushion that I just came to enjoy.

We're within just a couple days of our one year 100-lb anniversary -- I celebrate on July 14. I'm so happy to see that we've both made It! Congratulations on having proved you could successfully maintain such a grand weight loss!

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KRAWRS 8/11/2011 10:43PM

    "The professionals says to envision your goal.

But... what if you can't?

I couldn't. I didn't know what 160 looked like because I have never been 160."

^^^^ That's exactly where I am right now. Thank you for sharing your words. It helps. Knowing you could do it, even though you were afraid, makes me think maybe I can do it... even though I am afraid.

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SPJOHNH 8/11/2011 5:58PM

    You and me, we should be talking. You ARE a Spark People Success Story and I am the newly hired Spark People Success Story Manager. I love, love, love your story and want to talk a lot more about it.

(also SDJ)

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BAILEYS7OF9 8/11/2011 4:01PM

    Absolutely! Great job!!! A lot like my blog today, same thought process.. do it anyway!

emoticon emoticon

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TEENY_BIKINI 8/11/2011 3:28PM

    Excellent work, gorgeous. You are rocking it!!


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FINEBABY72 8/11/2011 12:38PM

    Congratulations! 100lbs is an awesome accomplishment! For me I wonder will I ever get into Onederland and will I stay there once I get there? Of course I will get there and of course I will stay there,because I also have been working very hard just like you! Thanks for the encouragement! emoticon

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FANGFACEKITTY 8/11/2011 12:08PM

    Congratulations on owning your fears and working through them to reach this awesome milestone!

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HDHAWK 8/11/2011 11:22AM

    All positive improvements to make you an even better and healthier you! emoticon

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RUNNER12COM 8/11/2011 11:02AM

    I think more people need to read this blog entry, so I'm doing what I can to make that happen!


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STITCHINGNAN 8/5/2011 4:10AM

    Where would we be without your blogs? Often reflecting how we feel ourselves. Looking at you pics I can see you have done amazingly well, its incredible Be proud of that. Maybe you are still looking for the real You, but she is there already You need to have self belief. Irene emoticon

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FRENCHTOSD 8/4/2011 12:43AM

    I'm right with you up until the well-adjusted part! Thanks for some much needed inspiration.

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WATCHMEGO2 8/3/2011 7:29AM

    That is totally my problem. I am scared to death to succeed, that is why I have closed in on it time and time again and then sabatoged to the tune of 20ish pounds. I keep saying I want it so bad but do I really? If I really wanted it that bad would I continue to stand in my own way?

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PATRICIAANN46 8/2/2011 9:42PM

  Hi Savannah.......
What a wonderful blog. You are not only helping others with the example of what you have accomplished physically, but now you are also helping others with some of the emotional ups and downs along the way. What a truly inspirational woman you are........I am so proud of you and all you are.

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IMSMILEY88 8/2/2011 6:17PM

    Congrats on all you've achieved...and all you've learned!

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1CRAZYDOG 8/2/2011 11:40AM

    What an insightful, honest, helpful blog!!! Thank you for sharing it!

Yes, as you said in your comment re: my blog, apparently the Army just isn't meant to be for my DS. Just knew what the heck IS meant to be for him. But HE has to figure out that one.

Sorry I have been a bit AWOL with the e-mails, but you are thought of each and every day. I hope today's a good day for you, my dear!!


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CIVIAV 8/2/2011 9:29AM

    Oh you are so right Sister!

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FUNFROG79 8/2/2011 8:38AM

    AMAZING accompishment!!! You should be so proud that you have come so far! Congrats on your success!! emoticon

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STRIPEDTIGER 8/2/2011 8:31AM

    Wonderful!! I'm so proud of you and the fact that after you've accomplished so much your thought is to help others get there is AMAZING. You're a wonderful person!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Great job! Celebrate all of your hard work, not just the affects of it!!

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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 8/2/2011 8:04AM

    This is the conversation I have with myself all the time. I don't know what 160 looks like because I can't visualize it... I've never been there, I can't imagine. I am also scared of it... and the power it holds for me because I'll be unstoppable. I need to meditate on this for awhile. Thank you for re-triggering this so I can process further.

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HOPE2011 8/2/2011 5:27AM

    Thanks for saying what a lot of us have in the back of our minds - I'm glad you worked past it to success!! emoticon

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MESEATURTLE 8/2/2011 2:34AM

    Can totally relate to your blog!well said!

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VPOPPY01 8/2/2011 1:52AM

    Wow, what an amazing blog! I've been battling with this fear for at least a year. My thought process was almost identical to yours. "Who am I if I'm not big?" was my main concern which is pretty much what you posted! I'm so glad I got to hear this from "the other side!" emoticon and emoticon

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RUNNER12COM 8/2/2011 12:26AM

    I cannot wait to share this blog with everyone. You are awesome!

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