Friday, August 23, 2013

Day Five!

This has been me, all day.

I have been sugar free for five days!  Today, I wanted to shoot myself stuff my face with ice cream.  However, I prevailed and ate some fruit instead.  I'm not going to lie, it wasn't nearly as satisfying.  I would rather have had ice cream - until I remembered that I usually get super tired after binging out on sugar.  Plus it usually gives me sugar sweats which are terrible.  I guess it really goes to show that it's just not worth it.  

In all seriousness, I haven't really had too many cravings this week.  There's been a couple times where I've almost talked myself into going someplace I know would have things to tempt me but I didn't.  Today was by far the hardest day for me.  I think it has more to do with the fact that the weekend is here and I'm more relaxed and have less reasons/excuses to stay home and avoid temptation.  Instead I have to be out there in the grocery store, in the movies, or (I swear) just walking down the street where all the candy and yummy, tempting things are.  Because of all of this, I'm more inclined to give in to my urges over the weekend-not that I plan on doing so this weekend.  In fact, I've mapped out a plan of places I'm going and people I'm going to be around.  They know about my sugar avoidance and they have explicit instructions to watch me like a hawk.  They're doing it too.

Something that has come up since I started this whole cleanse is that I find myself automatically reaching for things to fill the void of sugar.  For instance, I've noticed that late at night I'm wanting things like bread or nuts or some type of snacky food to eat.  I've been careful in what I'm consuming but it has been difficult not to give in.  I swear this is worse than when I quit smoking.  

Anyway, I'll keep trucking along.  Only 25 more days to go and then . . . I'm not exactly sure.  Right now my goal is just to make it that far.  

Do you have as big a problem with sugar as I do?  If not, how do you moderate your sugar consumption?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

4 Month Update!!!!!

This month marks four months since I started my weight loss journey.  I remember when I came home on April 1st and told my family that I was going to change my life and I asked them to do it with me.  My family rallied and together we have lost a total combined weight of 165 pounds since we started April 2, 2013.  That's a whole person!!  I am so grateful to them for the support, love, and courage they have given me since we've started this process.  I know that without them, I wouldn't have made it as far as I have.  By no means are we done yet but I am super excited to share with all of you how far we've come. 

First, my amazing mother!  She actually started her weight loss in March and she's lost a total of 49 pounds altogether!  Even though my mom didn't start on HCG like Shane and I had she supported us all the way.  She ate the limited foods we ate and didn't bring home things we couldn't have.  I've never lacked her support since we've started and she's always been my number one cheerleader.  When we all started together on April 2nd she weighed in at 275.4 and her current weight is 238.6.  That's a 36.8 loss since April 2nd.  (P.S. all pictures below are as follows:  right side is before and left is current.)

Second is my wonderful second father, Shane.  When I came home and asked him to do HCG with me he agreed to do it simply so I would have his support.  Since then we stopped taking HCG but he still is, and always has been, my rock.  He constantly gives me encouragement to keep going and he doesn't let me give up.  His starting weight was 352.2 pounds and his current weight is 275.2 (he's one pound away from my weight!)  That's a total loss of 77 pounds!!  The man is amazing.

He's not high I promise-just not the best pic ever lol

Last but not least is myself.  I've had many struggles and many triumphs so far along the way but I'm still going strong.  I started out at 326.8 pounds and my current weight, as of last Wednesday, is 274.2 pounds.  (We weigh on Wednesdays but I couldn't wait until tomorrow to post these pictures.  I've already waited too long!)  That's a total loss for me of 52 pounds.

My "before" pic is my absolute favorite!

I'm so proud of the strides we've made as individuals and as a family.  This whole experience has brought us all closer and given us something to share.  We aren't done yet and I'm excited to keep seeing our progress.  I hope you'll stick it out with me!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Sugar Cleanse?

So I've made a decision and I'm excited about it!  Here lately I've been struggling to get my sugar consumption under control.  Unfortunately it hasn't been going as well as I would like it to.  I keep justifying eating sugar with promises that I'll do better tomorrow.  Then tomorrow comes and I put it off again.  It's no good!  So I've made a decision that I'm just going to do it.  I'm not going to wait for the "right time" or those elusive tomorrows.  I'm going to start right now, this minute. 

I've set a goal that for thirty days I'm not going to consume any sugar, other than what is naturally in fruits and complex carbohydrates and even then I'm going to be super mindful of how much I'm consuming.  That eliminates fro-yo, sugared coffees, candy, and whatever else I've been eating that is complete crap.  Let's face it, there's been a lot of unhealthy behaviors lately.  So I'm taking my life back and getting my nutrition under control.  For the next thirty days I'm going to be sugar free!  It's going to be hard and I'm going to have some massive cravings and withdrawals.  But I can do this!  I can kick sugar's ass!  I can feel better about myself because I'm not eating it.  It will no longer be a guilty pleasure or something that I have to sneak and hide. 

It's my hope that this challenge will help me to get my weight loss back in control.  I've been maintaining my weight pretty consistently but I've stopped losing.  I've only been losing a pound or two a week and only because I'm still working out.  My sugar binging is certainly the cause of this stall and I'm tired of allowing it to happen.  So with this sugar challenge I hope to cleanse my body of the the addiction I have and to start seeing a weight loss again.  Will you do it with me?

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Check In!

I have been unusually active this summer.  And by that I mean that I've been spending a lot of time outside-I even have a tan!  I've spent some time catching up with old friends this summer and hanging out with new ones.  I have been working out almost every day and I often try to go running as much as possible.  I've gone camping, been berry picking, and have done a lot of barbequing and swimming in the lake.  I honestly can't tell you how long it had been since I've swam in a lake.  I'm pretty sure I was still in my teens. 

I have lost a total of 52 pounds so far!  I finally hit that mark last week and I was so excited.  My official weight is now 274.2 lbs.  I only have 24 more pounds to go before I get to buy my bicycle.  My goal is to hit 250 by the end of September.  Unfortunately it's at the end of summer, which stinks, but that still gives me a couple months of bike riding outside before it gets too cold. 

I made a big decision yesterday.  I decided to donate my hair to Locks of Love.  If you don't know they require at least 10 inches of hair in order to donate.  I definitely had plenty of hair to do so.  I've really been thinking of cutting it for a couple weeks now but I hadn't given much thought to cutting that much of it.  Then a couple days ago I remembered my cousins had donated their hair.  I thought, if I'm going to cut it I'd rather it go to good use than just be trashed.  Plus someone else could really use it.  So before I could change my mind I went ahead and did it.  I look so different but I think the new look goes with my new lifestyle.  What do you think?

(Excuse the pictures, they were taken from my camera phone so the resolution isn't the best.  At least you can get a gist of what it looks like.  Also, that pony tail is a lot longer than it seems-I'm covering a lot of the top with my hands.  Talk about a drastic change!)

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Berry Pickin'

Yesterday I tried something new, I went berry picking at The Berry Ranch with my trainers and some friends.  I had so much fun and I may have made myself slightly sick from eating too many blackberries, haha.  Having never been before I wasn't really sure what to expect.  I didn't know that you could eat berries as you were picking.  Actually, I'm not sure we were allowed but we did it anyway.  I quickly found out how to distinguish the super sweet ripe berries from the ones that may still be slightly tart.  They were all yummy though.  It was really a beautiful day and hot as hades.  I think I sweated through all of my clothes - which is good right?  I did fall on my face and twist my ankle though.  Those rows can be kind of narrow and there are vines and branches everywhere.  If you're not careful, like I wasn't, and paying attention than you may fall.  I'm just glad no one was around to see me-I hope. 

Rebecca & baby Abiyel
Breeze & Lakota

Kaila-she found the best blackberries

Look at Ms. Frances walking!

It was hot out!  Why did I wear black??

Our Berries!

We ended up taking home 12.99 lbs of blackberries

Blackberry hands!
This is what he does for work, haha.

Our group!
It was hot and sweaty work but it was so much fun!  They have other things you can pick too, not just blackberries so we might have to try some of their other berries and see what they taste like.  I might have to go again and take the rest of my family. 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

7th Anniversary

My daddy - John

Today is the seventh anniversary of my dad's passing.  It feels like yesterday that I got a call from my brother informing me that he was gone.  Dad passed two weeks after his 45th birthday and as far as we all knew he was healthy.  His death left us all in a state of shock and no one has really been able to get over it since.  This year is really the first time I've been able to shift my focus away from the meaning of today and instead focus on his life.

My parents divorced when I was very young and lived in separate states.  I lived primarily in Idaho with my mother but I spent every summer in Wisconsin with my dad.  He was the first thing I saw when I got there and the last thing I saw when I left.  He taught me how to ride a bike and to dance in the rain.  We shared a love of many things including:  Jager bombs, Friends (the show), Ace of Base, Savage Garden, Garth Brooks, and a damn good BBQ.  My dad loved his family and made sure they knew it.  He was the first one there if you needed help and the last to leave.

My dad loved his sports.  He loved to golf.  Every summer when I was a kid he used to take my brother, my cousins, and I and we'd go golf ball hunting in the woods behind the golf course.  He used to pay us each a buck a ball for every golf ball we'd find.  Until we got old enough and good enough at finding them that it got to be too expensive, haha.  He loved his football too.  The packers were his team and every Sunday during football season you'd find him at his best friends house watching the game and drinking beer.

I remember my dad vividly. I can still see his goofy smile whenever he'd see me getting off the plane in Wisconsin.  I'll never forget the way he smelled, always like Drakkar, and it still makes my eyes well up whenever I smell it.  I still see his hands and how he'd use them to gesture whenever he got animated about something.  I remember his hugs and how he'd always stick his face in between my neck and shoulder and tickle me as he squeezed me as tight as he could.  Most of all I remember talking to him on the phone and every conversation he'd blow me a kiss before he hung up.  He always did, from before I can remember until the day he died.

I miss my dad every day and it breaks my heart that he's no longer on this earth.  There are things that happen everyday that I wish I could call and tell him about.  I still have moments where I think to myself, "I need to call dad and tell him . . ." and then I remember.  Even though I miss him, SOOO MUCH, I am so grateful to have had him for the short amount of time that I did.  My life is so much better having had him in it.  So today, instead of being sad because he's not here, I'm going to celebrate his life.  I'm going to look back at these memories with fondness and happiness that I got to experience them.  I'm going to tell my mother and step-father that I love them everyday because I know what it's like not to be able to.  Today is definitely a day about my dad, but instead of it being about his death I choose to make it about his life and the fact that he lived.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

All You Need 2 Know About Sugar

This post is super hard for me to write because I'm going to be admitting my failures.  I've been avoiding writing it this week and I've finally come to the realization that I need to put it out there.  I need to be accountable to myself, and others, that I have a problem.

My problem is sugar and the fact that I'm addicted to it.

When I first started my weight loss journey I began with HCG.  If you don't know, it's a 500 calorie diet and VERY restrictive in regards to what you consume.  You absolutely cannot eat sugar or you WILL gain weight.  So for 40 days I didn't consume any sugar-other than what was naturally in fruit.  Then I went to Wisconsin and completely blew my diet.  I was eating ice cream and the wrong kind of carbs.  Ever since I've had a hard time getting myself back in control.  I decided that because I was losing weight and I was working out all the time that I deserved to treat myself.  I started with gourmet coffee's from Dutch Bros.  You know, the kind with all the sugar and extra flavorings in it.  Then pretty soon I was treating myself to froyo and we all know what that has in it.  Sugar.  These last couple of weeks have been really bad and I haven't been able to satisfy myself with just coffee and froyo.  Instead I was craving things like ice cream shakes and simple carbs like pizza.  Worse, I was giving in to my cravings.  I knew things were getting really bad when I started having dreams about macaroni and cheese and Top Ramen.  Things I haven't wanted in MONTHS.

I really didn't know what my problem was or why I couldn't control my cravings.  I started doing some research on food addictions and that's when I came across sugar addiction.  I don't know about you but when I first started thinking about this I thought it was ridiculous.  You can't be addicted to sugar.  I was wrong and you absolutely can.  According to an article I was reading, sugar can be as addictive as cocaine.  Think about that for a second.  That's a scary thought right?  Did you also know that too much sugar is linked to certain types of cancer and a whole list of other diseases that WILL kill you?  I encourage you to read the full article but I warn you that it is scary.  We all need to be aware of the fact that sugar can be addictive and that's in almost everything out there.

So now I know that I have this addiction to sugar.  And just like people that are addicted to alcohol or drugs, I have to go through a detox as well.  It's not as extreme, of course, as an alcohol detox but I'm going to have to fight the cravings. Thank heavens I have a great support system standing behind me.  So my commitment to you, and myself, is that I am going to stop looking for sugary treats.  I am going to watch my sugar consumption and only eat things that are unprocessed and only eat natural sugars like agave and honey.  I encourage you to do the same.

Is this something that you also struggle with?

Monday, August 5, 2013

Getting Reacquainted With Work

Things have been a little hectic around here lately.  As I've posted recently I just started a brand new job.  After five months of not working going back to work has been a bit interesting and very busy.  It's taking me a bit longer than I thought it would to get back into the groove of things.  I think that's largely because I've never had a job quite like this one before.  This job is pretty laid back, not that I lack things to do, just that my bosses aren't anal retentive micro-managing a-holes.  How refreshing to be able to get up away from my desk and go to the bathroom without having to report it or to be able to get up and get a glass of water without having to feel like I'm doing something wrong.  (If you can't tell, I'm so happy to be done with call centers, haha!)

Last week I spent a lot of time getting acquainted with my bosses and their routines.  They're pretty busy folks and I'm enjoying getting to know each of them better.  Not to mention I've spent some one on one time with some of our clients.  Getting to know them and their stories is going to be a huge perk to this job.  I'm so excited about getting to have real conversations with people instead of just taking orders and repeating the same conversation everyday on the phone.  It's been an exciting experience so far.

A little funny for your viewing pleasure!
I think these last couple of weeks are starting to catch up to me and yesterday I woke up not feeling so great.  Today it was confirmed that I've got some sort of cold bug. Since I get to work from home it's not as a big a deal as it would be if I had to go into work.  I still have my office space and things I have to get done but I can do it in my pj's with Vick's vapor rub all over my chest.  It does take some self-discipline to stay at home and get my work done but because I really enjoy what I do, it's not difficult for me to get it done.  There are days where I get to go to my boss's house but I still get to go in sweats and it's a really relaxed environment, because it's at his house.  Plus they're so freaking smart that anytime I get to go there I learn a ton.  I'm pretty excited about this job and the things that are happening in my life.  I'm definitely feeling pretty blessed right now.