Week: #3 Total Pounds Lost: 7 Pounds To Go: 194 What a wonderful week in health it has been!!! I made it through all of my workouts without dying, my eating for the most part has been on point, the … Continue reading
Week: Oh for Fs Sake… Week #1
Pounds Lost: 4
Pounds To Go: 197
Happy New Year!!! Time for a New You, time for a change, this time will be the last time, blah blah blah… but really, this time will no doubt be different. So, here we are a week into the new year and with this new year new promises to myself have been made. Albeit, promises that I have no doubt made to myself before, but as ol’ uncle Winston Churchill said, Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.
The truth is, I have been kind of lost. I have an amazing program that I am on that keeps me energetic, focused, and well, enthusiastic throughout each day, I love it but it only solves one piece of the puzzle. I thought that just by having the energy and the focus I could conquer by tendency to binge, but in reality, I needed something a little bit more. I tried going back to food plans of the past, but they weren’t the same. I needed a new food program, one that was strict enough for me to successfully follow. Some people thrive from choices and loose restrictions… I am NOT one of those people. I need check boxes, I need rules, and I need someone who would I would have to face if I failed.
Enter stage right, none other than the Bikini Boss herself… well, to be honest, when I first met her I had no idea who she was, but I knew she knew fitness. You know those women who own whomever they are without apology, the type of women we should all aspire to be like as far as the self-ownership… yep, that’s her. She is Fit Mom. She wrote a book and I bought it to be supportive of a new mommy acquaintance. Well, that purchase ended up opening a door to a new food plan that is sending all other food plans that I have ever tried out the window. She ended up creating a personalized meal and exercise plan for me and my mind was blown!! It still follows the high frequency smallish quantity meals, high in protein, and nothing packaged idea, but in a different way. The idea being to focus on losing fat and creating lean muscle mass. Easy enough, right?? (Man, I wish there was a sarcasm font!)
Anyhoo… She challenged me to be my own transformation story, and without hesitation, I said, game on! I have meal prepped like a boss, and tomorrow it all begins. I am actually really excited! The best part, our children’s activity schedule has me seeing her multiple times a week, I can’t hide, I can’t avoid seeing her, so that only leaves me the option of success! So, here we go! Day 1 is just hours away!
Total Pounds Lost: 17
Pounds to Go: 191
It’s been a long time, 40 years in fact, since an American woman has crossed the NYC Marathon finish-line 1st! This year, it was the awesome Shalane Flanagan!!! She is nothing short of amazing, inspiring, motivating… all of the ___ing words that mean she is definitely up on a pedestal in my mind. Fun fact, we are the same age, she is actually a few months older, which of course made the good ‘ol mind wheels turn… why is age EVER an excuse for not setting a big goal or for achieving ANYTHING physical? Sure there are certain roadblocks and changes that come with age, but does that really matter? Or is it more the grit and determination to reach your goals that will allow for the defiance of age?
Now, I am not saying that at the ripe age of 35 (I can still say that for another month, so I will) I am going to suddenly begin my olympic career, because I just don’t have the desire or the time it would take to actually make that happen… but, I am saying that age shouldn’t be a hard stop when it comes to any fitness goal. Can age make reaching a goal harder? Perhaps, but that doesn’t mean that the goal isn’t worth it or that it is impossible!
Watching Shalene cross that finish-line and say “F*CK Yeah” inspired a moment of clarity… Is my weight-loss goal something that is going to make me say “F*CK Yeah” WHEN I reach it?? Ummm… duh! Of course it is! I mean, I am no stranger to the F bomb. I watched a Pink interview the other day, where she said that the F word was her favorite curse word, and I whole heartedly agree. It’s so versatile, and in this case, is the ultimate expression of pride, joy, and accomplishment! Not only do I want it bad enough, but I already know what it takes to get there. Is it a bit harder this time around? Yeah, I’m older, things on the inside are a changing, but that isn’t going to stop me! I want that feeling that Shalane had today, more than any cupcake, block of cheese, or spoonful of cookie butter!
So, here’s to Shalane, and all of the goals that we have that will make us say “F*CK Yeah” WHEN we achieve them!!
Pounds Lost: 9
Pounds To Go: 121
Another week, another pound left on the pavement! This week was hard. Not so much in the eating or exercising department, but emotionally, it was just plain hard. This week marked the end of my time at Baby Boot Camp, and all of the sappy friendship and good bye songs were the soundtrack of the past few days. Mothers need support, and when that support comes in the form of strong women who have a passion for fitness, well… that type of support just can’t be beat.
When we moved back to Florida, just four years ago, I set out to be one of those moms who did activities with my daughter. I would show her what it was like to have a healthy, hands-on mom. Baby Boot Camp was the perfect marriage of fitness and time with your child. You work out in front of your child, you engage your child in the workout through song, and sometimes tickles, it is an amazing program to be a part of, to grow with, and lastly to teach. I was a part of healthy changes in the lives of many. I got to share in stories of success and struggle, and together we pushed through it all. We were bonded by sweat and sweet laughter, and I couldn’t ask for a better mommyhood experience. These were the women I called when I reached my goal weight and went shopping as a skinny girl for the first time. These were the women who I coached back to healthier mommy bodies. These were the babies who I would help soothe and who would go home and do squats as toddlers. Most of all, these were the women who got me out of bed when my world was crumbling. I’m sobbing even as I write this, because a part of me will never be ready to let that kind of love and support go. But… the reality is, living an hour away from where we celebrated health every Monday and Wednesday was just too much. The commute was stressful, and although the workouts were still great, and the women were still wonderful, it was different because I didn’t get to participate in all of the after-workout opportunities to strengthen my village. So, the decision was made in mid-March that April would be my last month of teaching, and time just flew by too fast.
All of a sudden, there we were celebrating my last week of teaching Baby Boot Camp. Old cherished friends came to those final workouts, faces that I haven’t seen in a long time, and my heart was filled with so much love, that it was literally coming out my eyeballs. I made it a point to give it all I had as an instructor for those last two classes. Being able to teach and coach again was a gift, and I wasn’t about to leave without giving everything of me back to the women who helped shape my mommyhood journey thus far. I know my relationships with these strong mamas will continue in a different way, but I also know that these past four years have been filled with some of the best memories of my life, and for that I will forever be in debt to the mommies of Baby Boot Camp.
Mommyhood is a journey, and one that should never be walked alone. We need our village to help us along the way, and whether that village is made up of family, or friends who feel like family, or, if you’re lucky, a combination, each village is special, necessary, and cherished. This Fat-Free Mommy was truly blessed to be welcomed into the fold of the Baby Boot Camp village. Now, as my mommyhood adventures continue on a different path, I know I am strong enough to take on this change of life, even though it may be making me scared and sad in this moment. I am blessed because my village spans more than just my street corner. I have strong mamas I can turn to around the world, and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
Pounds Lost: 8
Pounds to Go: 122
Oh Boy! Another runDisney racecation in the books! Over the weekend, I took on the Inaugural Star Wars Dark Side Half Marathon, and let me tell you it was the darkest half of my life! Not because I had to wake up at 1:45am to get to the start on time, and not because the theme was the villainous dark side of Star Wars, but because it was my slowest and heaviest half marathon ever!
You know, research has shown that for every pound you weigh, you put about 4 pounds of pressure on your joints, especially knees and ankles. So, doing the math, I ran this past weekend with an additional 488 pounds of pressure! That’s in excess of the pounds of pressure my frame should have, but I won’t do the entire math equation for you because even the Fat-Free Mommy has to have some modesty! With all that added pressure, of course I would be slower than desired, snails pace even, and I own it! I didn’t go into the race expecting some running angel miracle of speed despite my size. I am this heavy because of bad choices, bad choices have consequences, and instead of a time-out, my consequence was slug like slowness.
So there I was, jalking along the course, not knowing a single character, because I have never seen a Star Wars movie, I know blasphemy, but it’s the truth. Stopping for characters wasn’t going to slow me down, that’s for sure, but my lack of speed still ignited a certain level of anxiety. If you don’t meet the pace requirements, you get swept, end of story. If you fall behind the sweepers, you don’t get to cross the finish line, you typically still get a medal, but really, who wants a medal they didn’t earn? Ok, a lot of people, but I am NOT one of them. For the first time, in 24 half marathons, I was terrified of being swept. Looking over my shoulder or around the corner probably wasted more energy than it was worth, but nevertheless my head was on a swivel. Then, by mile 11 I was surrounded by people who appeared to be in pain, with defeated looks on their faces. You can do it, and Are you ok? are words I would call out as I passed. One woman in particular that I saw, had rubbed her thighs so raw with the friction of movement that she was bleeding, to her I offered my emergency bottle of Aquaphor. At that moment it dawned on me, that even though I was much slower than I wanted to be, and much much larger than I wanted to be, I still wasn’t injured or defeated. I pushed myself, but not to the point of injury or pain, and I finished ahead of the sweepers by a couple of miles. I was ok. I did it. Sure, I was sore and exhausted in the two days that followed, but nothing that a little rest couldn’t cure.
Beyond anything, this weekend got me thinking… Yes, I am on a long journey back to health, but it could be worse. A lot worse. I have the means and the knowledge I need to be my own success story, and really that is all I need. No matter what, just like in the race, if I keep pushing forward, I will reach my goal line!
Pounds Lost: 3
Pounds to go: 127
Selfishness and vanity, two very easy elements of life. Each one of us is both to a certain degree, and that is not only ok, it is good. There are times when we need to put ourselves before anyone else, and there is no problem in wanting to look your best! I have done this weight loss journey in the past for me, for vanity, and even before for my kiddos, but this time, I am adding another level of who or what is driving me down this path of weight loss success.
We all know I am a runDisney obsessed mama who is determined to do all of the runDisney races at Walt Disney World. They are fun, they are challenging, and contrary to what others may say, they are worth every penny. So, it is no surprise that when runDisney announced a new challenge during the Wine and Dine race weekend, I was all about it… just take my money runDisney! However, when it was time to register as an annual pass holder, I was left on the sidelines without the secured race bib which I desired. No amount of refreshing my screen or attempts through multiple mobile devices was going to change those evil words…”sold out” . Of course I still had an opportunity to register a week later through general public registration, but I didn’t want to wait. I took it as a sign that for the first time, I should run for something much bigger than myself, or my little family, I should run for a cause!
So I searched through the plethora of charities offering race entry, and I was drawn towards the one that not only struck a personal chord but one that I was already passionate about. It didn’t hurt that my favorite fitness mommy, Jillian Michaels was connected to the cause as well! This year, I will be running as a part of #TeamHealthierGeneration and representing the Alliance for a Healthier Generation in the fight against Childhood Obesity! I couldn’t dream of a better organization for me to represent. I was an obese child, I currently am an obese mother, and when it comes to my children, I will stop at nothing to give them the healthiest lives possible! Children rely on parents and schools to teach them how to be healthy, and right now, 1 in 3 children just aren’t learning the right lessons. If we don’t make a change in what foods are available in schools, how much physical activity children have access to, and the quality of at-home nutrition, then our children will be a part of a generation doomed for disease. The Fat-Free Mommy just can’t let that happen!
Clearly I’m pumped about this opportunity, but one thing just didn’t fit. How can I lead the way towards a healthier tomorrow, if I am not my healthiest self? The Fat-Free Mommy may be many things, but I am NOT a hypocrite! Could you imagine? Hello, I’m Mrs. McObesity, I don’t live by the healthy ideas I promote, but I would love it if you would… yeah, no! So I am putting my money where my mouth is, and for every pound I lose, from now to race weekend, I will donate an additional dollar to My Donor Drive . I believe in this cause, and I believe in myself, which is all I need to succeed. A healthier tomorrow is on the way, one pound and one dollar at a time!
Pounds lost this week: 4.8
Overall pounds lost: 26.4
Pounds to go to Goal #1: ZERO!!!
Pounds to go to Goal #2: 12
Overall pounds to go: 94
They say, the number on the scale doesn’t define you, it is just a number, but let’s be honest, that number can set the tone for your entire day. If it’s less than expected, an obligatory happy dance ensues, if it’s higher than expected, everyone better watch out for the cranky train. Do I have an unhealthy relationship with Madame Scale? Probably. But, I also know I’m not alone. Is it a relationship I want to pass down for generations to come? No! Of course not! That’s why we are making healthy family life choices now!
Well, this week was full of little happy dances, it was exciting, and I felt like Madame Scale was somehow rewarding me for a job well done. Every morning I would get on, see a change and immediately started my little happy dance. My activity level is still the same as it always has been, alternating running and Baby Boot Camp. The change was in the kitchen! I am finally on a roll of healthy eating, and it has clearly made all the difference! My ways in the Fat-Free Mommy kitchen may not work for everyone, but who am I to keep them from you… Here’s what I’ve been focusing on:
- Small Frequent Meals – I eat a small higher protein snack about every 2 hours with a bigger meal for lunch. Based on the philosophy that if you keep feeding the fire pieces of good wood, you will keep the fire burning awesome flames. Same works for your body, don’t let your body get to the point of grumbling tummy noises before you eat again, keep the fire burning, but just make sure this doesn’t turn into some kind of grazing cow scenario.
- So Long Sugar – Did you know that the American Heart Association recommends a limit of 20g of sugar per day for women and a limit of 30g per day for men? I dare you to take a look at the labels of what you are eating and calculate how many grams of sugar you are taking in! Excess sugar in your system cannot be used, and is converted into stored FAT! Even things that are labeled low-fat or fat-free can be high in sugar which can make the fat in your body grow!
- Bye Bye Bread… And Pasta – Breads and pastas and chips, oh my! They are a Fat-Free Mommy weakness for sure! If I had the type of self-control that would let me stop at a proper portion then these items may have been able to stick around, but the truth is, I am, at this point in life, unable. Being on the Gluten Free side of life helps me keep those temptations at bay. I would much rather get my carbohydrate calories from vegetables and fruits anyway, because you get to eat WAY MORE! Do I want a 1/2 cup of past or an entire half of a spaghetti squash? No brainier! Fill that plate with squash!!!
- Hello Hydration – Water, water, and more water! 1/2 my body weight in ounces as a baseline to be exact! (Add in another 32oz per hour of sweaty exercise) We have all heard about how important hydration is when it comes to weight loss, or life in general really, and it’s absolutely true! If your body is even 1% dehydrated your systems, including your metabolism, will not work at their optimum levels!
So there you have it, all my secrets, which really aren’t secrets at all. Weight loss is all about paying attention to what and when you are fueling your body. When your body is given the right amounts of everything it needs, it will thank you, and so will Madame Scale, it really is that simple. So here’s to many happy dances to come, and maybe a little healthier relationship with Madame Scale.
Pounds lost this week: 5.2
Overall Lost: 21.6
Pounds to go to Goal #1: 2.8
Overall Pounds to go: 99.8
My gracious, what a week it has been! It all started last Tuesday with the general public registration for the runDisney Avengers weekend in California. Now, California doesn’t have as big of a draw for me because; a) it’s across the country and traveling that far with two toddlers is just well, let’s just say it’s an adventure all in and of itself, and b) I don’t particularly like that the Disneyland races are, for the most part, on the everyday streets of the surrounding city. It just doesn’t have the same magic for me as running through purely Disney streets. Nevertheless, come registration day I was curious. Have you ever registered for a runDisney event before? Well, if you haven’t let me tell you it is quite a rush! You know the time and the day it starts, and there you are, if you’re smart, about ten minutes prior just waiting for the registration link to go live. It finally does after refreshing your screen in a somewhat methodical manner, and within a flash you are entering your information and signing your running legs away to be a part of some of the most magical running moments imaginable. On top of that, events have been selling out within minutes lately, so you have to be on your registration A game!
So, there I was, on regular registration day for the Avengers race weekend, not the annual pass holder early registration day that I normally would pay attention to, and I noticed something a bit odd. The challenge race combo, the only one I would have registered for because I am addicted to runDisney challenges, was not selling out as fast as would be expected. I then looked to the date of the races, and as fate would have it, the races that celebrate heroes are on the anniversary of the death of my life’s biggest hero, my Dad. I put my little man down for a nap, checked on the registration again, and still no sell out. I took it as a sign that I should honor my hero by running in the race for heroes! And just like that we are heading to California not once, but twice this year! I feel good about it, because let’s face it, if I were to be at home that weekend, without the distraction of races and special parties, I would be.. Eating cake… On the couch, and just feeling sad. Now, that weekend can be a celebration, and there may be a cupcake involved, but at least I will have run 19.3 miles!
So, now, fast forward to today, and it’s early registration day for the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend, or in the Fat-Free Mommy house, Dopey weekend! Oh the anxiety surrounding today and being online at exactly the right time. My heart was racing, I was breathing fast, and then within minutes, it’s done. I am officially going to jalk all four races of the Dopey Challenge… Again! Who am I! Seriously, who am I? Not even 3 years ago I would have never even thought I could do the Dopey Challenge, now it seems as though it will be something I do every year! Again, who am I?!? I know I still have a long journey of weight loss and training ahead, but I can’t help but be amazed at myself. Who I have become health-wise, and who I also look forward to becoming.
I know that my experience in this upcoming Dopey will be very different than my first, and not because I know what to expect, but because physically I will be a much different person. I will reach my goal before the first Dopey race day, which will mean that I will be racing 110 pounds lighter! That’s 440 less pounds of pressure on my knees, just that difference alone will make for a compete change in experience. And you know what, I can’t wait! I am so extremely excited! I won’t be the Fatty McFatGirl who can accomplish amazing fitness goals in spite of her weight. This past year, I couldn’t help but think people were looking at me, at my size, and wondering what I was doing there. Like I didn’t belong doing Dopey because I couldn’t possibly finish it, it would be so dangerous for someone my size. I felt like an outsider wanting to be a part of the cool kids fitness club. This upcoming year I just won’t have that cloud of self-conscious yuckiness. I will be the healthy fit mama who looks like she belongs among the athletes. I will feel as though people will then look at me as the fit mama who can accomplish amazing fitness goals because she has trained hard to do so. I know that in the reality of both situations, no one was really paying attention to me, but hi, I’m a self-conscious person, so in my head, everyone is a Judgy McPhearson. Either way, registration is over, I have come down from the high, and now it’s back to my journey! So, let’s go! I’ve got some major training to do!
Pounds Lost: 0
Pounds To Go: 107
A couple weeks ago, I got to be a running princess once again, and I loved every minute and every mile of Disney’s Princess Half Marathon weekend. 22.4 total miles (5k, 10k, and a half marathon) later and I have to say that my best memory from the weekend wasn’t from any of the races, although they were absolutely wonderful, but my best memory is from a five minute breakdown of a conversation with a weight loss celebrity. Danni Allen of The Biggest Loser fame was scheduled to be a speaker at the Fit for a Princess Expo, and I was beyond excited to see her. In season 14, she won the Biggest Loser, I watched her lose her weight, I watched her win, and I identified with her all those years ago, because she was inspired to lose weight by a traumatic health experience with her Dad. Us Fatty McDaddy’s Girls need to stick together, right? Well fast forward to a few weeks ago, and I was pumped full of weight loss energy, and ready to totally geek out and get my picture taken with a weight loss idol.
Seeing her talk was amazing, yes she was a celebrity, but she was real, and she seemed like a friend up on that stage. She spoke of taking weight loss one day at a time, and making small changes in order to make an eventual big change, giving up the scale obsession and focusing on the fit of clothes. She was lovely, and I sat there just soaking in her weight loss positivity. Her speaking time came to end and it was time for what we had all been waiting for, time to actually meet her, ask questions, and of course take a social media postable photo. When it came to my turn, even with a line up of women behind me, I took the opportunity to do the unthinkable. After our photo, I said I had a question for her and then it happend… I completely broke down. Even as it was happening, I was telling myself not to cry, don’t let it all out, but I was powerless. I told her how she inspired me because I too was a Daddy’s girl. I told her how after having my daughter I lost 220 pounds, felt amazing, and then put 120 of it back on to have my son. I told her through embarrassing tears how my Dad passed in November and how a since then my weight loss has stalled and gone in the way wrong direction, and how I just can’t seem to get a grip on it and turn the weight loss train around. At that point I was ugly crying, apologizing for crying, and she did just what a friend would do… She gave me the biggest, most sincere hug. Then she gave me the advice that only she could give. You need to forgive yourself, she said, and she was absolutely right.
I am sad, I miss my Dad, and for the most part, I can be strong, I can put on a brave face and go on with life’s progress. But then, there are other times, ironically today is very much one of those other times, when the tears flow, the flashes of his death take over my vision, and I feel lost and alone. Typically, that will result in a binge, and it doesn’t really matter what food I turn to, my ability to have self control is completely gone. At some point I will snap out of it, gain control, but by that point, I will have also gained a pound or five, or ten depending, which leaves me as a shell of strength, hating myself for not having it all together. It’s a cycle that I need to break, and that every week I work on breaking, but what I really need to do first is eactly what Danni said, I need to forgive myself. I need to take it one day at time, and realize that this time around, weight loss may not be as easy, but I can’t and I won’t give up.
I am so thankful for my embarrassing moment with Danni. It was a small piece of an exciting weekend that truly meant the world to me. I may not ever see her again, but I am a forever fan, and she has helped me more than she may ever know. I am still very much a work in weight loss progress, but I can do this. I will reach my goals. It will take a while, but I will be the Fat-Free Mommy who I know I can be!
Pounds Lost: 5.6
Pounds to Go: 101.4
It’s no secret that when it comes to reality television, I am, for the most part, a fan. Particularly of shows on networks like TLC or Bravo. One newer show that my eyeballs have been particularly glued to is, My Big Fat Fabulous Life on TLC. If you haven’t seen it, it chronicles the life of a self-proclaimed fat-ass bad-ass woman named Whitney, who through her early 20-something years has gone from a average sized girl, to one who tips the scales at over 380 pounds. Her and I both have a condition called PCOS (poly cystic ovarian syndrome), which is, at its core, a hormonal imbalance which wreaks havoc on your womanhood. It makes it extremely easy to gain weight, a tad harder to lose it, and if being a Fatty McFatGirl wasn’t bad enough, you also tend to have elevated levels of testosterone which may surface in a bit of facial hair. Now, can I grow a beard like Santa? NO! But do I need to be a regular at the European Wax Center? You betcha! So I can empathize with Whitney, and for the most part, I love her attitude and outlook on life!
She landed this reality show because she was the brave big girl who loved to dance, and wasn’t afraid to be proud of her moves! Her video went viral and now she can be a true inspiration to so many women! She doesn’t need me to be, but I am proud of her. You go girl! However, when I am being a voyeur on her newly televised life, I can’t help but be a little judgy, any time there is a scene where she is eating. She says, that she wants to lose weight, she loves her body, but she knows that in order to be healthy she needs to be a little bit less of her fabulous self. So, you would think that she would at least have a conscious idea of what she should or shouldn’t be eating. I know, for me, removing gluten and all things bread, pasta, and potato turn my body into a functional fat burning weight losing machine. If I slip, I will gain, no questions asked, I will pack it on, regardless of how active I may be. So, when I see her eating pizza or a mayonnaise and banana sandwich (apparently a Southern delight that I will never be able to stomach), I cringe!
You can’t lose 100 pounds just by dancing! You have to get in the kitchen and create a healthy body from the inside out! At times I want to shake her, and then give her a hug, because even my judgy wudgy thoughts come from a place of love for this courageous stranger. But seriously, losing weight is a two part puzzle, you can’t out exercise a bad diet, and you can’t get a strong magazine cover worthy body just by eating apples and chicken breasts. You need both pieces. Some say, and I tend to agree, that weight loss is more of a kitchen battle, but don’t forget that building muscle will help that kitchen battle be more efficient. So, again, you need both pieces!
In the case of Whitney, I hope that in the episodes to come she gains the food knowledge that will help her lose weight. I want to be a cheerleader for her success, because I see so much of my former self in her. I know she can have success on Madame Scale, just as I know I can and will continue to have success on her. So, more power to Whitney, more power to the Fat-Free Mommy, and more power to everyone on any path of health and happiness everywhere! We can all have all the success we desire as long as we pay respects to both pieces of the puzzle!