READY4CHANGE81's SparkPeople Blog READY4CHANGE81's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community A few photos of my trip to Thailand this summer! I know I promised some photos of Thailand. There are thousands on my camera to go through. It was an amazing chance of a life time trip!!! It sure was HOT (like Houston!) I did a ton of walking, hiking, and some relaxing on the most beautiful beaches I've ever seen!!!! <BR> <BR> This was in the Phi Phi Islands. I did I tour of the islands. We made several stops along the way. We rode in the longtail boats you see in the picture. We also were fortunate enough to get out of the (larger... Mon, 5 Sep 2016 14:22:57 EST Finding balance I finished the first couple of weeks of a new school year. It definitely feels different not having graduate school on top of work. However, with the group that I have this year I am not sure that I would be able to do it. <em>198</em> I have been putting in 12 hour days most days and sometimes I do not feel like that is enough time. Admin keeps putting more and more work on our plates that takes away from planning/instruction....and those things MUST get done. <BR> <BR> Then a fr... Mon, 5 Sep 2016 13:09:20 EST First day back to work... Well today I had my first day back to work for the school year. Officially we go back on Wednesday so I was able to just spend the day working in my classroom and organizing!! I was able to set up my little mini fridge today so I will be able to bring a lunch and snacks tomorrow. Today I did have fast food, but I just got the nuggets from Chick-fil-A and a drink. (no fries) Then I made sure I went to the grocery store to stock my fridge with good and healthy food! <BR> I tracked all my ... Mon, 8 Aug 2016 23:26:55 EST American portions After coming home from Thailand, I was in the hospital last week due to pneumonia and a bacteria infection in my stomach. Needless to say, I haven't been able to eat much this past week. I wanted to eat and was very hungry most of the time, but my stomach wasn't really cooperating. So while I have lost weight this week I haven't counted it just yet because I am sure it is due to lack of calories that will somehow balance out once I am able to eat regular meals. <BR> <BR> I went to lunch... Sat, 6 Aug 2016 21:15:45 EST Hello Spark world! Wow, I sure didn't post a lot throughout my time in graduate school!! I managed to make it through graduate school with a 4.0 and it wasn't an easy feat. I often sacrificed everything to the extent of doing well in school and keeping up with my full-time teaching job. <BR> <BR> With that said, I am DONE with graduate school and I am ready to take off these lbs I've gained along the way. Part of me didn't want to come back and (once again) admit defeat, but I realized how silly that is. ... Sat, 6 Aug 2016 12:50:30 EST Staying on track... Hey spark friends! <BR> <BR> How was everyone's Thanksgiving holiday? I am was able to travel back to the Midwest (East Central IL) to spend the week with my family. I finally felt like I was starting to get over being sick and then getting to that super cold weather put my body right back into shock. My ear infection and strep seemed to go away within 4 days or so, but I've had a nasty cough and chest congestion for almost a month! :( <BR> <BR> After a little over 2 weeks and finishing ... Sat, 5 Dec 2015 21:26:33 EST Up and running then...BAM!! I was off to a great start and feeling good and BAM! I've been REALLY sick the last few days. I finally went to the urgent care doctor late last night because I knew the over-the-counter products weren't working and I wasn't getting better. <BR> <BR> The doctor said I have strep and an infection in my left ear. She gave me a lot of meds and I am already feeling better today than yesterday. I am sweating a ton...pretty gross. Yet...maybe it's the toxins leaving my body. <BR> <BR> I j... Tue, 10 Nov 2015 11:26:44 EST Another day in the books.... <img src=""> Holy cow has it been a long day!!! I have my graduate class on Tues nights. How did my day go... Well. .... I ordered a garden salad from the cafe today and brought my own tuna ...well lunch time rolled around and my salad was gone!! Another teacher took it! I was so mad because I didn't have anything else to eat for lunch. By the time I got home I was starving. I had a bag of popcorn in my mailbo... Wed, 4 Nov 2015 00:33:35 EST Back in the Gym.... <img src=""> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> I am copying this from my Instagram because I'm exhausted lol <BR> <BR> Time to comment on a few pages ...shower and get to bed :) <BR> Mon, 2 Nov 2015 22:23:13 EST accountability Short and sweet blog... more for accountability... <BR> <BR> Today was the best day I've had in a while. I finally decided to quit moping around and looking at all the things I've failed at over the last few months and figure out what I CAN do. <BR> <BR> I CAN control my food and portions. I CAN track my food. I CAN have a positive attitude. I CAN drink water. I CAN eat whole/non-processed foods. <BR> <BR> Today I tracked everything and ate healthy. I honestly feel a lot better t... Sun, 1 Nov 2015 23:15:37 EST LOVING SPARK APP!!! The spark app has changed so much!! I got a new phone months back and I didn't have it on here yet. So I added it this morning to track my calories and realized there are so many features that weren't there before. This should make it so much easier to track and blog! Yay!! Sun, 1 Nov 2015 08:44:16 EST Only up from here... Have you ever gotten to a place and wondered how in the world did you get there? <BR> <BR> I have no idea how I have lived the last year in denial. Every day I think about my weight. Every. single. day. I don't know how you can think of something so often and know that it is a problem, but continue each day just as it was before. I am miserable. I have no idea how I have convinced myself that this is okay. For so long I have put on this face like everything is okay...and told myself... Sat, 31 Oct 2015 18:00:47 EST still chuggin along Sorry I haven't updated in a long time... <BR> <BR> I am alive and still focused on my goals.... <BR> <BR> just work & grad school have taken over my life. My weekend consisted of about 30 hours in the library doing research and writing papers.... which is usually what it looks like. <BR> <BR> By the time I get everything done at the end of the day I am exhausted and haven't made time to get on spark :( ....or don't want to look at a computer for another second. Hopefully my next sem... Mon, 23 Feb 2015 01:51:48 EST 2015 I'm ready for you!! Hey friends! <BR> <BR> I recently posted that I love the POSITIVE energy of a new year! That rings SO true to me. I don't know what it is about a new year that makes it so different than a new month, or week, or day... but I am definitely loving it and going with it. <BR> <BR> 2014 was a year of letting go for me and working on figuring out who I am, what I want out of life, and going for it. While it wasn't my most successful year on the scale, I know that I learned a lot more about... Sun, 11 Jan 2015 14:49:19 EST Did they see me? I read this blog today and wanted to share it with all of you.... something I've struggled with in the past. Some of you may not relate, but those that can I want you to know that you are not alone. ***THE POST BELOW IS SHARED FROM ANOTHER BLOGGER on another site...but I can relate!!! <BR> <BR> <BR> did they see me? <BR> i don't know why it's so hard, <BR> to just walk by it. <BR> it doesn't have power over me. <BR> i'm stronger than i think i am. <BR> but just one bite, <BR> that couldn'... Sat, 6 Dec 2014 20:41:56 EST Stress is not a free pass!!! This week so far has not gone as planned :/ <BR> <BR> FINALS WEEK. WEEK BEFORE TESTING. = STRESS <BR> <BR> I need to <em>227</em> right now and take a deep breath and realize stressing out will not change the amount of work on my plate at the moment. <BR> <BR> I've recognized more than ever how much of an emotional eater I am... Every time I would get stressed over the last few days I would crave things I would normally not even eat??? (like Twix candy bar?? or pizza) What in ... Wed, 3 Dec 2014 22:55:26 EST Happy Birthday to me :) Hello friends. :) I hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving spent with loved ones and good friends! <BR> <BR> This has been the first Thanksgiving that I have spent it with friends (not family/significant others family) so it was a little different. I was going to just stay home to avoid holiday food, but at the last minute changed my mind when some friends were insisting I come over. I was really proud of how well I did. I didn't overeat at all and I made my holiday about the comp... Sat, 29 Nov 2014 11:03:13 EST Hey friends I am doing well.... even got some workouts in lately. My muscles are feeling it. LOL :-) I am not sure if it is allergies but I've been dealing with chest congestion and a horrible cough/itchy throat for several weeks now. I will start coughing and can barely catch my breath and my eyes will start watering. Has anyone experienced this???? I've been drinking tea with lemon and honey. I've tried mucinex and Tussin yet nothing works. Any suggestions??? It's causing a lot of fatig... Mon, 10 Nov 2014 21:46:52 EST chugging along I really do have some of the best spark friends!!!! Thank you all so much for your support!! I will go and check out your pages tomorrow and see what is going on in your world!!!! <BR> <BR> I have had a CRAZY and exhausting week, but I feel hopeful that thing are going in the right direction. <BR> <BR> I got rid of some extremely toxic things in my life this past week and while it was hard I know in the long run that it is what is best for me... <BR> <BR> Sometimes I do not understand why... Sat, 25 Oct 2014 00:09:14 EST feeling hopeful & blessed (: Thank you so much to my spark friends for the comments & goodies today. It seriously lifted my spirits and considerably helped my mindset! <BR> <BR> I've started the day off strong w/ my lunch packed and ready to go! =) I ate my packed lunch & snacks at work, but didn't eat anything in the afternoon which left me really hungry when I got home. I stopped at starbucks and got a black americano. I really wanted to order something sweet, but I knew it was just in my head. More often than no... Mon, 20 Oct 2014 21:03:58 EST Spark Friends... I could use some encouragement. I admit it. I convinced myself I could go through this journey alone. Not because I thought that I was better than anyone at Spark People or that I didn't NEED any of you. It wasn't that at all. It was more because I felt like every time I got on spark people it was a song, dance, & some sort of promise that I was going to do better. I would do better for a week, two...or maybe three, but slowly I would fall back into bad habits. I would let one bad meal turn into a binge that could lea... Sun, 19 Oct 2014 23:03:41 EST I need a reset button... I was off to a good start this summer with eating right and working out. THEN one day at the gym while doing mountain climbers Ianded on my foot wrong and fractured it. Honestly it was a HUGE blow to be and I let it allow me to get completely off track. I felt sorry for myself and let myself believe that it would always be something. I know I made poor choices to get to where I am today, but I also know that I am the only one that can change my attitude and behavior. <BR> <BR> For mor... Sun, 24 Aug 2014 19:04:59 EST midweek update :D This week started off rocky with my grandma having a stroke :( She's been in the hospital and recently transported to a rehabilitation center. She is paralyzed on her left side and her speech is very slurred. It breaks my heart to see her like this. <BR> <BR> I have been getting my workouts in and did some meal prepping tonight. :) I'm feeling better than I did over the weekend by focusing on knowing that I made the right decision. I've kept myself fairly busy so my mind doesn't start... Wed, 28 May 2014 23:25:35 EST Saying good bye...or see you later. Over the past year I feel like I've taken one step forward and two steps back. Ive clawed my way back up only to fall back down. Gaining and losing the same 20lbs or so over and over again. <BR> <BR> I am not better off today than I was a year ago and that HAS TO change. I write this blog with an extremely heavy heart and tears rolling down my bare with me if it doesn't make sense. It's time for me to BE REAL and BE ME. <BR> <BR> Today I made the hardest decision emo... Sun, 25 May 2014 19:52:02 EST quick check-in :) I promised a blog... not a long one...but here it is :) <BR> <BR> I've been faithfully hitting the gym for a little over a month now and it feels great!!! I feel so alive again!! I feel like I've got my groove back! :D <BR> <BR> This week I've tightened up on my diet...and the scale is moving!!!!!!! YAY! This past week I exceeded my step goal and only dropped 0.6. At first I was a little discouraged and then I thought NOPE...You kicked butt in the gym this week! You worked out on days... Thu, 8 May 2014 00:15:39 EST Short & sweet Today I logged into my 24 hour fitness account to see how many times I've gone to the gym this month. I have gone 17 times!! woo hoo! I am very proud of that!! <BR> <BR> I have earned over 80,000 steps this week! :) Soo.... Why only the 5lbs weight loss for the whole month. <BR> <BR> HAS TO BE DIET. <BR> <BR> so... as much as I hate it... I have to track. Everything else is adding up to a loss ... (calories in/calories out) <BR> <BR> <BR> back to the basics. :) <BR> <BR> Sun, 27 Apr 2014 23:14:09 EST Testing week... dun dun dun.... I am very proud of myself & how well I've done this week. It is what are normally the most stressful days of the year for Texas teachers. (STAAR TESTING) However, I took on a different approach this year... <BR> <BR> WHY STRESS???!! <BR> <BR> <BR> I have busted my butt teaching these kiddos all year, tutored 3 days during the week and on Saturdays.... Why should I be stressing? There is nothing more I can do. <BR> <BR> I cannot tell you how much better this week has gone for me. I pr... Wed, 23 Apr 2014 23:49:48 EST In life you get what you think you deserve & I deserve the WORLD! :D This journey is so much more than counting calories, drinking water,and working out. Through SparkPeople I have met so many people on this journey who are just like me. It has felt great to feel like I am not alone because for so many years there were so many people who could never relate. I have never really been close with my family. Of course we love each other and do things for one another, but the TIGHT close bond I see with many other families doesn't exist for me. I've always fel... Mon, 21 Apr 2014 22:48:00 EST The cardio queen is back! ;) Something happened this weekend... something clicked. <BR> <BR> While I thought signing up for a race (Dirty Girl Mud Run) 5 months from now was just something I could work towards it really sparked something inside of me. Even though it has only been a few days I noticed a huge change in my attitude an the way I am looking at where I want to be. I know the power is completely within me to get to where I need to be and I am the only one that is holding me back. I am the personal respons... Mon, 21 Apr 2014 00:21:27 EST 176 days to go... To say that I have needed something to give me a push in the right direction is a bit of an understatement. I am not sure when it happened, but the drive I had to continue on this journey with the same enthusiasm went out the window long ago... which is often hard to admit. Especially when not a moment goes by I am not thinking about my weight, where I am, and when am I going to do this... <BR> <BR> I have always wanted to do an all women mud run and tonight I found one. While it was a b... Sat, 19 Apr 2014 00:06:33 EST showing up It’s about you “showing up” to your life. It’s not about waiting for the money or waiting for the right time or the right person, It’s about you- stepping up and living your full potential instead of settling. And it isn't until we look beyond the superficial layers that we can move forward and get what we want in life. <BR> <BR> How bad do you want it? Sun, 6 Apr 2014 10:30:49 EST Living in the moment!!! :) Don't let another day go by where you let your past hold you captive. In the end, who really cares how many wrong turns or detours you had to take as long as you get where you belong. Yesterday's excuses EXPIRED when your eyes opened this morning so no matter how great the task start today at making the rest of your life the best of your life!!!!! <BR> <BR> <BR> brand new hair. brand new me. brand new attitude. <BR> <BR> <img src=" Fri, 21 Mar 2014 00:04:03 EST Spark Recipe :) Look what I made today... :) <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I have to admit they turned out pretty awesome. <BR> <BR> I found a spark recipe and kinda made it my own. <BR> <BR> I enjoyed this with a 1/4c baked red potatoes (made with tsp of extra virgin olive oil & Mrs. Dash) and 1/2c mixed fruit :) <BR> <BR> Sun, 9 Mar 2014 17:50:32 EST Thinking out loud... Hey spark buds... :) <BR> <BR> Sorry I haven't been around lately... <em>2</em> We have state testing coming up in a few weeks so work has somewhat taken over. <BR> <BR> A little weight loss update... <BR> <BR> The first weigh in of the BL (work biggest loser) contest went very well... I was down 11.2!! <em>40</em> I couldn't believe it. While most of it may have been water weight it was incredibly motivating and caused me to step up my game for the second week. I worked out... Thu, 6 Mar 2014 23:06:16 EST What's on your playlist? I am pretty bored with listening to the same songs when I workout.... <BR> <BR> What awesome songs do you have on your playlist that you would recommend?? <BR> <BR> I'm thinking of buying myself a new CD at the end of the week as a reward if I keep up with my workouts/lose weight when I weigh in at WW. :) <BR> <BR> Okay...GO.... <BR> :) Sun, 26 Jan 2014 14:53:26 EST Attitude is everything I got this in my email this morning and thought I'd share. :) I know attitude is something that makes a huge difference on this journey. What you believe about yourself is so important. If you believe you can...the bigger chance is you will... <BR> <BR> I may even disagree with how low the percentage (8%) of worry comes true. I think if we worry about things enough they become a self-fulfilling prophecy. (been there. done that.) <BR> <BR> However, thought it was a great video to share... Sun, 26 Jan 2014 12:57:45 EST Is January almost over? It seems like I just brought in the New Year ...ummm yesterday? <BR> <BR> During the week has been go, go, go....and I really have not had time to blog. After the back injury I really limited my (hardcore) exercise and was proud of myself for not trying to push through it and trying to work through it and making it worse. <BR> <BR> I spent this time focusing on my diet and I am very proud of how well I've done so far. Since we've come back to school (work) I have not ordered out despite... Sat, 25 Jan 2014 18:48:45 EST Day 2 and 3 Considering I was in bed before 8pm last night I didn't get a chance to blog. Somehow I have managed to hurt my back during the workout I was so pumped about on Monday. It was hard for me to even get through the day at work because no matter how I turn my head, walk, bend it HURTS like someone is stabbing me in the lower back. I have been pretty pumped up to get my workouts in and this has kind of threw a (short term) wrench in the mix. While I am a little frustrated, I am learning to no... Wed, 8 Jan 2014 22:52:35 EST Day 1 I have been up and down on this journey many times. Recently, I had to be honest with myself and look back to what really works... I won't get into all of that because most of you already know...and that would probably be a long winded post that I do not have time for!! ha ha <BR> <BR> I did fairly well with my diet today. I stayed within bingeing on anything.. :) The staff did end up eating out for lunch today so I ordered tacos with only steak and onions. I only ... Mon, 6 Jan 2014 22:22:16 EST Change isn't easy, but it is worth it!! So many times I want to sit down and blog, but I either do not have the time and when I do have the time I do not have the energy or feel like my time would be better put to doing something else. <BR> <BR> Here are a few updates, thoughts...and realizations... I know it's kinda long :P <BR> <BR> After a challenging holiday and birthday I have had a great week so far. I prepped a few meals Sunday night and it's really helped me over the last couple of days. I did try something new...cous... Tue, 3 Dec 2013 23:36:33 EST more than an exercise thing... (I miss her) Today was an amazing day... <BR> <BR> I was able to get lunch with some friends, go wander around some stores, get some books at B&N, and then went to a movie with a friend tonight. <BR> <BR> The movie I went to see tonight stirred up so many unexpected emotions. I am not sure if it is the holidays or the significance in the movie, but it was something I felt I could no longer run from. Once I was finally alone in the car tonight a flood of emotion took over me. Something I hadn't exp... Wed, 27 Nov 2013 23:58:27 EST feels good to be sore again :) I wanted to first say THANK YOU for those of you who regularly comment on my blog and check in on me. I'm sorry I haven't been a great spark buddy lately within reading blogs and catching up on comments. I try to come in and update here and there... <BR> <BR> I also find when I start commenting on blogs I can be here forever. ... next thing I know an hour and a half later I am still sitting here at the computer. I wanted to get on spark after my workout today, but I was worried if I did I... Mon, 11 Nov 2013 00:35:06 EST since I've been gone... Short update... <BR> <BR> Since the last time I blogged I joined weight watchers. I really need the support and reminding myself the importance of portion control. <BR> <BR> I have given away the last of the Halloween treats the students have given me. I should have done that day one. All that chocolate/peanut butter combinations adds up quick... = empty calories I do not need!! <BR> <BR> I mentioned in a status that I lost my fitbit... well, it was found by my coworker today in the ... Tue, 5 Nov 2013 23:14:18 EST Blog 7 I'm pretty proud of myself that I've kept up my blogging streak! <BR> <BR> <BR> I really enjoyed having PJ day yesterday at work, but being so difficult was hard to not want to take an afternoon nap! <BR> <BR> Today we had crazy sock and hair day. That was fun too, but the students were bouncing off the walls. I know they enjoyed it though. Tomorrow is neon colors and sunglasses. Thurs we get to wear "super hero" costumes. I also have my formal observation with my principal that day ... Tue, 29 Oct 2013 22:55:29 EST little steps... I'm not going to write a long blog entry because I'm super tired and need to get some rest. <BR> <BR> However, I wanted to note that I exceeded my 7,500 steps by just a little today. <BR> <BR> DRUM ROLL PLEASE.... <BR> <BR> 13,648 steps ... a little over 6 miles! woo hoo! That is the most I've had in a while. It sure has taken a lot of out me, but I'm glad I did it. <BR> <BR> <BR> Now to just work on getting my water in & diet... <BR> <BR> Mon, 28 Oct 2013 22:29:39 EST quick update Well, I didn't make my steps goal today and honestly I'm not sure the exact number of steps I earned. The trouble with my fitbit is that it has to be attached to your clothing. If it isn't then it doesn't count your steps. I switched outfits today before going to hang out with a friend and left my fitbit attached to my other clothes. So... I need to get back into the habit of making sure it is attached. :) <BR> <BR> I think I did rather well making healthy food choices this weekend. ... Sun, 27 Oct 2013 23:19:15 EST Am a a sleep-eater?!!?! So a couple of nights over the last few weeks I have woken up to a cereal bowl or left overs out on the counter in the morning. I know that everything was put away the night before. <BR> <BR> I live by myself so I know nobody else is leaving it out at night. Otherwise, I would definitely think it is someone else. <BR> <BR> Which means... I am getting something to eat in the middle of the night without even realizing it!!!! I dont' recall it in the morning most of the time. <BR> ... Sat, 26 Oct 2013 14:09:55 EST Made my steps goal :) Boy am I glad it is Friday! <BR> <BR> WooHoo!!! <BR> <BR> I woke up this morning feeling a lot better than I have. I have made a diligent effort to increase my water intake and it seems to have helped. When I woke up I put on my fitbit and gave myself a goal of 7,500 steps today. Normally my goal is 10,000, but I wanted to give myself something doable as I am getting back into the swing of things. <BR> <BR> I just logged in and I have 7,867 so far today. <em>224</em> = 3.49 mil... Fri, 25 Oct 2013 22:18:12 EST Appreciating the little things So tonight I had my breaking point.... <BR> <BR> I was at wal-mart filling out some paperwork for moneygram and while I was there my wallet disappears. I wasn't feeling well before I went, but I needed to go and take care of some things. While I was there filling out the paperwork I was texting and not paying attention to what was going on. So I go to grab my wallet and take my paper to the counter and I notice that it was GONE. So I panic!!! I KNEW I had it right next to me prior to g... Thu, 24 Oct 2013 23:12:00 EST blessing in disguise I had another trip to the ER via ambulance this week. :( I fainted at work and have had a series of blood tests to try to figure out what's going on. The doctor does not agree with ER diagnosis, but hopefully the blood work will give some answers. The doctor conducted a test where she took my blood pressure laying down, sitting up, and standing up and noticed a significant drop when I would sit up or stand up. She said I could have "orthostatic hypotension" ... however, she didn't want ... Mon, 21 Oct 2013 22:16:18 EST