Tuesday, December 10, 2013

I Propose A Catch Up!

What a whirlwind these past couple of weeks have been.  I cannot believe that it's already December and almost Christmas!  So much has changed in such a relatively short period of time and I've been so distracted enjoying every minute of it that I just haven't had time to blog. 

My first big piece of news:  I'M ENGAGED!!!!!!!!!!  Tim proposed on the first of December and it was the most romantic thing I could have ever imagined happening to me.  I suppose I should start at the beginning.  I first met Tim at one of our local community colleges.  He worked in this little cafe/bistro shop with my mother (who actually introduced us.)  The first time I ever really hung out with him I thought he was on a date with another girl.  Turns out I was wrong.  =D  We pretty much instantly bonded and became really good friends right away.  We started running together and going to the gym on a regular basis and that's really how we got to know each other.  We would spend hours talking at this little park we would go running at across the street from the gym.  Eventually we started spending all of our spare time together and our relationship just evolved from there.

The night he proposed he came over and asked me to go on a ride with him.  I agreed but he refused to tell me where we were going.  The first stop he made was at the park we run at.  He pulled me out of the car and told me that he took me there because that's where he really got to know me and where he first started to fall for me.  Awwwwww!!!!  It was the sweetest moment! 

My beautiful ring!
Then he took me downtown, by the college he works at (haha).  There's a beautiful bridge, currently covered in Christmas lights, that he first told me he loved me.  There he got down on one knee and told me that he loved me and wanted to spend the rest of his life with me.  Awwwwwwwwwww.  I wish that I could say that I immediately started jumping up and down screaming "YES!!"  Unfortunately I was so stunned when he pulled a ring out of his pocket that my first response was "You have a ring?  Where did you get a ring?"  Then I came crashing back down to reality and realized what was going on and then I screamed, "I mean YES!"  Haha, whoops.  There were tears and kisses and hugs and all kinds of wonderful feelings involved!  There were also some people walking by yelling congratulations.  It was seriously the best moment of my life.  We've already set a date, December 6th, 2014.  I've tried on a few wedding dresses but haven't settled on one yet.  Right now I am just so excited to be marrying the love of my life that I can't really focus on much else.  I'm sure as this next year goes by that I'll have a lot more wedding stuff to share.   

My second piece of news is not so exciting but it is still news.  I started a new job working for Verizon's technical support.  Actually Tim and I both started this new job so we could have the same hours and the same days off.  We'll be working 3:30 to Midnight which is a later shift.  There was no way I could get a day job and still be able to spend time with him.  Eventually we'll get better schedules, I hope.  Right now while we are being trained our shift starts at 5:30 in the morning.  Talk about early!  I've definitely not been getting enough sleep lately-probably because I'm having a harder time adjusting to this schedule than I thought I would.  Tonight I'm definitely going to bed early!  Anyway, as you can see we've had some changes going on and this next year just means there will be even more coming so stay tuned!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Winter Wonderland

It's starting to look a lot like Christmas!  And it's not even Thanksgiving yet!  Regardless, it's my favorite time of year.  This year I finally got to go downtown to watch my city light up their Christmas lights.  They always do it the Friday before Thanksgiving but I've usually had to work.  This year I didn't so my honey took me to go watch the lighting.  It was pretty spectacular.  I wish the pictures I took showed up better but the important ones came out alright!

This is usually the look I get when I ask him to take a picture.

But then I get these =D

This is Clyde the Camel

These don't do the lights justice

It was so bright shining over the water-which you can't see

But it was beautiful

Especially with my sweetie there =D

Awww <3

That's a big Christmas Tree

And it was freezing!

It was a pretty special night and there were a TON of people there.  They had a live band and people were giving out free hot chocolate and free coffee, which we of course had to partake of.  I'm excited I finally got to go see it.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Distraction . . .

I didn't mean to, but it looks like I took a small break from blogging.  I started dating my best friend and everything else kinda took a back seat.  =D

Except for my weight loss.  I've still been losing but only because he goes to the gym with me and keeps me accountable in the food department.  He's been doing my iron man's with me this month (thank heavens!) and we've got a pretty good start but we may have taken a break from that too.  Whoops, haha.  I guess we got distracted . . .

Anyway, I'll be back with more updates but right now he's waiting for me to come watch a movie and that sounds so much better than staring at my computer. 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Scary As All Get Out

Recently I've been going through some things that have been giving me great concern.  It started about a month or so ago and here recently it's become more and more frequent.  What's happening is this:  Whenever I eat, although not every time, a couple hours later I get some really big stomach pains usually followed by a round of vomiting.  It feels like there is a large amount of pressure sitting in my upper belly and it gets worse and worse until I eventually have to vomit.  Afterwords the pressure usually goes away - that is until recently.  Lately it's been getting worse and sticking around longer.

I have no idea what the problem is or what's causing the issue.  I've been eating pretty clean lately and I've been watching my portion sizes.  I haven't introduced anything new into my diet so I'm still eating all the same things.  Whatever it is, it's causing me some major concern.  There's been a couple visits to the doctor so far with no results.  I imagine there will have to be more testing and more doctor visits.  Hopefully I can figure out what it is because as of right now I'm a little scared to eat anything.

I can tell that it's starting to effect my health.  What little I do eat isn't staying down like it should so I'm not getting the nutrients I need.  I'm not eating as often as I should either.  My energy levels are way down and I'm exhausted all the time.  It's frustrating and scary not knowing what this is or how to fix it.  Right now I'm just taking it day by day.  Hopefully I'll have some answers soon.

Friday, November 1, 2013


I can hardly believe that today is November 1st!  I've been looking forward to Halloween for so long and it was gone way to fast.  Now here we are in a brand new month and I am pretty excited!  This month is going to be a busy month but there are so many new possibilities.

November is my Ironman month.  This is the month that I'll be doing two Ironman triathlons that are being sponsered by my gym.  If you aren't familiar with an Ironman it consists of a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride, and a 26.2 mile run.  The first Ironman is a week challenge for Pound Plunge and the second is a 30 day challenge.  The weekly one is a group activity so all of the members of my Pound Plunge team work together to complete the challenge.  There are four of us and we're all pretty dedicated so I think we can get it done.  The second Ironman is a 30 day challenge and it's all individual.  I'll be completing that Ironman all by myself.

This month is going to be my month.  I'm going to be super focused on my body and eating healthy during November.  I started this morning by getting up and weighing myself, which I haven't done in a few weeks.  I mentioned in my post yesterday that I've been struggling with some of my eating habits and it reflected on the scale today.  I'm up three pounds from where I ended last month, weighing in at 271.6.  It's not a huge increase but any increase at this point is detrimental to the lifestyle I want to be living.  This is proof that eating is 90% of your weight loss.  I went to the gym consistently in October and because my eating wasn't as good as it could have been, I still gained weight. 

I really got lazy and complacent.  I stopped journaling what I was eating and I quit counting calories.  I stopped reading labels on the food we were buying and increased the amount of eating out I was doing.  These are behaviors that I'm going to work on changing this month.  I'm going to start journaling again and keeping track of the calories I'm consuming (you can help keep me accountable by following me on myfitness pal.  I'm under jmason39).  I'm going to stop eating out and start following the meal plans that I get from my trainers.  And most importantly, I'm going to start reading the labels on my food again. 

November is my month.  It's the month I'm going to take back control of my eating habits and my body.  It's the month of Success!

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!  This is my absolute favorite time of year!  All my favorite holidays are back to back; Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  These last couple of weeks have been filled with The Haunted World, scary movies, trunk or treats & boo bashes, and all kinds of fun things.  What it hasn't been filled with:  treats or tricks of any kind. 

In years past this time of year brought with it all kinds of unhealthy snacks like hot chocolate, candy, pumpkin spice lattes, pie, and all other sorts of things.  This year my resolve to stay healthy is strong and I'm determined to come away from this season weighing less than when I went into it.  That being said, I'll be the first to admit that I've struggled with this concept over the last month.  It's taken me a while to get these seasonal habits under control and to stop myself from reaching for those pieces of candy or sugary treats.  I've found a few things to help me stay on track.

Here's what I'm doing to keep myself in check:

  1. Set Goals.  Just because it's the holiday season doesn't mean that I can't meet my goals.  It's important to keep making those goals and try to stick with it.  Make sure you write them down and put them somewhere you can see them on a daily basis so you're constantly reminded of where you're at and where you're going.    
  2. Plan ahead.  This time of year I've got a lot going on with family and friends.  I'm constantly on the go and sometimes it's hard to always be prepared when it's time to eat.  Plan ahead.  Always have a plan no matter where you're going or what you're doing.  If you don't than it can be really easy to go get some fast food-which may not offer the healthiest choices.  
  3. Come up with physical activities and challenges.  Come up with some kind of physical activity that's going to keep you active.    For example, check out my current challenge on Facebook.  I find that the more people I can get involved is more people to help keep me accountable and vice versa.  Being active during the holidays and the colder months can be hard.  It's all too easy to talk ourselves out of going to the gym when it's rainy or snowy outside.  Coming up with these challenges helps me follow through.
These are just a couple of things I find that are helping me get through the holidays.  I'm sure before it's all said and done that there will be more to add to this list.  What are you doing to keep yourself healthy this holiday season?

Thursday, October 17, 2013

I Signed Up For An Ironman

That's right, I did.  I signed up for an Ironman triathlon.  Actually, both my mother and I signed up and we're currently recruiting all of our friends to do it with us.  Now before you think I'm completely whacked out of my gourd, let me explain.   We are doing the triathlon through our local YMCA and it's set out over a month period.  You still have to complete the swimming, biking, and running that you would in a normal Ironman but I get to do it over a month instead of a day.  I'm pretty sure I would die otherwise.

To be honest, this is something that I would have never considered doing before.  I would have been perfectly content sitting on the sidelines watching everybody else do it.  I wouldn't have wanted to put in the time or the effort, because lets face it-it's going to take some dedication, and so I wouldn't have even tried.  That thinking got me up to and over 300 pounds.  I'm trying to change that so I signed up to do an Ironman. 

Truth be told, we're acutally really excited about it!  Both my mom and I have just been trying to get back into the routine of going to the gym and getting our workouts in.  Having people to go with is helping ot keep us accountable and it gives us some encouragement when we do show up and kick our workout's butt.  Plus it's been fun!  I think for a while there my workouts were getting tedious and I stopped having fun, which is really all on me.  My attitude had changed and so my workouts changed.  Now I'm putting myself out there and making myself try new things-wether I want to or not.  For instance, I'm not really keen on swimming laps but I'm still going to go do it.  Why?  Because it's a new form of excercise and it just might teach me how to do something different. 

I encourage you to think about trying something you wouldn't regularly do.  You just might surprise yourself. 

Sunday, October 13, 2013

6 Month Up Date

It's update time!  I can not believe that it's been SIX MONTHS since we changed our lives and started losing weight as a family.  I'm extremely proud of my family and the strides we've made.  God knows we've struggled but we keep moving forward, some of us kicking and screaming, but we keep going.

Shane has been incredible this entire journey.  The man has not deviated or wavered ONCE in his resolve (I wish I had half of his will power).  When we started on April 2nd he weighed 352.2 lbs and now he's down to 256 lbs making that a total loss of 96.2 lbs.  In six months.  He doesn't have a gym membership but he never sits still.  He's constantly moving and you probably won't find him inside sitting down until after dark.  That combined with what he means the pounds have just been dropping off of him.  I'm so thankful he's been doing this with me and I'm so proud of the progress he's made so far.

 Pictures are as follows:  Far right is starting, middle is last update, far left is current:

For my mom and I, these past couple of months have been a struggle and we've seen some setbacks in the weight loss department.  While we haven't gained any weight back we haven't seen much of a decrease in our weight either though we are still continuing to lose inches.  Mom has stayed at the same weight since our last update six weeks ago of 238.2.  She's still lost an incredible 37.2 lbs since we started in April.  That's not her true weight loss though because she actually started before the rest of the family did so her actual total weight loss is 49.2 lbs. 

Since my last update I've only had a total loss of 4 pounds making my current weight 270.6 which is a 56.2lb loss.  Breeze is always telling us that it's not about the number on the scale-it's about what our bodies are showing.  Well our bodies are showing that we haven't given up:  

It's been frustrating that we've let ourselves waver a bit and so we haven't seen the loss we both would have liked.  I think that we've made some incredible progress elsewhere though.  For instance, we've faced the temptations & the struggles but we're still here.  We didn't give in and we didn't give up.  We've both lost inches (I wish I would have had the forethought to measure my inches before and after, dang-it) and dropped sizes.  I'm now down to a size 16 & Ma is at a size 18.  Our gym memberships are still active and we're still going and still working out with our trainers.

I know for myself, and I suspect my mother also, that we've really struggled with our motivation.  I really just got so overwhelmed with how much I still had to go that I lost sight of what my end goal was.  I let my busy life take control and I started to sacrifice the things that mattered - like coming home and cooking dinner with my family.  Pretty soon some old behaviors were starting to creep back in and we were eating out more than we should have.

I read somewhere not to get motivated but determined instead.  Motivation comes and goes but determination is what's going to keep us going forward. We've decided that's just what we're going to do.  We are determined to lose the weight and live a healthier life.  I'm determined that next month there will be some better progress.  I'm determined to take control of my eating behaviors and conquer my weight.  

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Pound Plunge!

I'm so excited right now I could scream!  Today my mother and I signed up for pound plunge. 

What is pound plunge?  I'm glad you asked!

It's an eight week program that our local YMCA puts on to get people involved in getting fit.  Youdo it in groups and you have the option of either doing it with your own group of people or they randomly select a group for you.  During the eight weeks you get to work out with a trainer once a week and then each saturday morning you do random competions against other groups for points.  Some involve a workout scavenger hunt, a nutrition class, a cycling class, zumba, swimming, and so many other activities like that.

Today while we were at the gym the director came over and asked us if we'd be interested in signing up.  They only two open spots and she thought it would be perfect for us.  We agreed and are now
teamed up with another mother-daughter duo.  Luckily they were there and we got to meet them.  They seem like they are going to be awesome teammates.  They've already picked out a group name (the program actually started last week so we're a little late) and we're going to be calling ourselves Wonder Women!  Haha, I love it. 

I think this is going to give my mom and I the motivation we need to get back to the gym.  I'm really looking forward to it.  Plus we get to meet a lot of other incredible people working on the same things we are.  It's going to be a blast!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Never A Dull Moment . . .

Since coming down with this sickness there hasn't been any excess energy to workout.  Most of my days have been spent in bed recuperating.  I'm finally starting to feel on the mend so I decided that I needed some fresh air.  There was no way I was going to be able to do a full workout but I figured a nice walk would help clear up my nasal passages and it would get me outside soaking up some good ol' Vitamin D. 

It actually worked.  This weekend we had absolutely gorgeous weather and it was so refreshing being outside.  It took a lot more out of me than I thought so when I got home from my walk I ended up taking a three hour nap.  Whoops. 

Such a pretty day

There were a TON of crawdads

Proof that the leaves are changing!

We weren't the only ones enjoying the day

This really made me think of Fall
So originally I had planned on walking three miles but it got cut short around mile two.  I was walking with a friend of mine and we heard meowing.  It sounded like a distressed cat so we started looking in the brush.  Turns out it was four kittens stuck in a tree.  They were pretty tiny babies-I'm guessing around five to eight weeks.  Old enough to eat solid food.  I'm not sure if momma had left them to go hunting herself or if they were on their own because there was no sign of their momma.

As soon as I started calling "Here kitty kitty" all four of the little buggers came running.  I'm assuming they've had human contact at some point-I've never known wild kittens to approach humans but I suppose I could be wrong.  Where we found them wasn't anywhere near a house so it's possible they were dumped there.  Anyway, I scooped them all up and put them in my sweatshirt and zipped it up.  I handed my keys to my friend and he took off running to go get the car for me.  I kept walking waddling towards where we'd parked the car but I was definitely going much slower.  I must have looked freaking nuts funny because here I am with, what looked like, a pregnant belly and I'm trying to hold the bottom of my sweatshirt shut so they can't get out.  It was entertaining I'm sure. 

We got the little dolls to my house where I fed them and made sure they got some fluids.  I wish I could have kept them until I could have found them good homes but our house is full as it is.  Plus I wasn't sure if they were healthy or not and I couldn't risk getting Charlie sick.  I had to take them to a local animal rescue center where I was assured that they would be treated well and would be found good homes, which I have no doubt it will happen.

What are the odds after bringing home Charlie that I would find four MORE kittens?  

Tuesday, October 1, 2013


Well I'm pleased to say that it seems as if things are starting to work out with our new addition, Charlie.  Slowly but surely our dogs are getting used to her being around and they don't obsess about her as much.  Thank the heavens!  They're even starting to play together.

The only issue we seem to be having at this point is that they can be a little rough.  She'll eventually get them back for it I'm sure.

The weather's been getting colder and we've had a lot more rain here than usual-or so it seems.  For some in my household this is their favorite time of year.  The house has been completely decorated & looks like it's been taken over by stuffed animals wonderful.

 I love the fact that I can bring out all the yummy fall scents in our Scentsy burners.   What I don't love:  Getting sick.  It inevitably happens every year.  I get a nasty cold and I'm usually laid up in bed for a few days just trying to breathe.  Ugh.  I am enjoying the colder weather though.  I forgot just how much I've missed sweatshirts and blankets. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Meet Charlie

I'm officially in the dog house . . .

For bringing home a kitten.  Meet Charlie:

Charlie is a little female about 6-8 weeks old and she followed Kaila home yesterday morning while they were out running.  They didn't find any sign of her mother or owners.  I think she'd been left alone for a while because she is extremely skinny and she about devoured my hand when I gave her food-I don't think she'd eaten in a while.   She's super friendly though so it seems as if she'd been around people before.  She also got a clean bill of health from the vet with some instructions to get her shots soon and to fatten her up some. 

We have a couple of wiener dogs that don't know what to think about her.  They alternate between licking her like they're trying to taste her and thinking she's a squeaky toy they can chase.  Dudley, our male, keeps poking her with his nose to see if she'll run.  He keeps stressing over her so I"m hoping after a few days that he calms down otherwise we may have to find her a new home.  I hope it doesn't come to that.

Our first night last night went pretty well.  She slept most of the night but at about five she was up using the litter box, all by herself, and then it was meow time.  She would not stop crying!  My dad is NOT happy I brought her home so I was desperately trying to get her to quit crying.  Luckily she wasn't too loud so I'm hoping he didn't hear her.  She wouldn't go back to sleep though until I pulled out my soft blanket-then it was lights out.

Today she's taking some time getting used to everything and she's running around the house checking it all out.  She's been more vocal than I would like today and I'm not sure if it's because she just isn't used to the place or what.  I have no idea how to get her to quit either.  Any ideas and tips would be appreciated!  I've grown attached to the little squirt in the last couple of days and I'm hoping that it works out so she can stay.  I would hate to have to give her up. 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Non-Scale Victories

I have been so focused on losing weight recently that I've been stressing about all the little things I haven't been doing right-such as eating sugar.  Granted it's been a little out of control lately but I'm starting to wonder if it's more to do with the fact that I'm constantly thinking about NOT doing that I can't help but crave it.  It's actually been causing me a significant amount of stress and it's killing my motivation to be healthier and to work out. 

Because I've been so stressed and busy lately I decided to take this weekend and just go have fun.  I spent some time with my family, went shopping with my mom, and I quit worrying about work, eating, and losing weight.  I just spent time in the moment.  I still had a busy weekend and Saturday I pretty much ran non-stop but it was stuff that I wanted to do.  I got to socialize a little bit, catch up with family I haven't seen in a while, and I got to go shopping!

I did celebrate some amazing non-scale victories this weekend with my mom.  I got a free gift check from Lane Bryant in the mail for $25 so I went and tried on some clothes.  Plus they were having a big sale this weekend so I ended up getting double the clothes for my money.  While I was there I discovered that I'm now officially wearing a size 18 pants and it won't be long before I'm in a size 16!!  =D  I haven't been in a size 18 pants for YEARS.  I think the last time I was in that size was in high school but I honestly can't remember-it's been so long.  I also discovered that I'm able to wear a 2x shirt.  (That's down from a 4x by the way.)  It's still a tad tighter than I would like but the 3x is definitely too big on me now. 

Perhaps the most exciting part of the weekend for me was actually not trying on clothes.  It was buying my first pair of running shoes.  I have really been wanting a decent pair of running shoes but I've always been worried about the cost.  I went to the Nike outlet this weekend and I got a heck of a deal on a pair of shoes. Half off the original price and then an extra 20% off that.  I was so excited I snapped them right up!  I actually had to restrain myself from buying multiple pairs.  These ones will last me for a while before I'll have to replace them.  

I feel so rejuvenated after this weekend and I know that going forward some things have got to change.  I can't allow myself to get a place where I'm not motivated to be healthy.  I refuse to let myself go there.  It'll be a work in progress but I think my new running shoes will help me move forward!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Boot Camp

To keep up with this new, harder phase of my life I recently participated in a boot camp.  Now mind you, this was the day after I did 100 dead-lifts.  Apparently my trainers think I can handle this kind of stuff.  I may have surprised myself a bit when I actually did.

Anyway, we got a bunch of people that we know to come over to our house for this boot camp.  There were eight participants total, two trainers, and a bunch of equipment set up in different stations.  It was a blast.  I got to see how I compare physically to people that I would say were healthier than I am-not that I should be comparing but who doesn't do that?  I actually did pretty well and it was a very tiring hour.  I conned Rebecca, one of my trainers, into taking some pictures of this fun event.  So without further ado:

Teaching me total balance.  I fell after she got this picture, haha.

These squats are killer!

Quick water break!

Push ups!

A little weight throwing!

Everyone loved this station.  It's a killer way to do our legs but it was nice to "rest"

Pull up crunches.  Freaking hard!

She forgot to jump

Pooped by the end

She just jumped on that thing and planted herself!

Some people did it just fine.  I didn't . . .

Our exhausted group

We actually had a really good time and now we're thinking about doing this every other weekend.  Anyone is welcome if you feel like joining in!