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Good morning, Everyone!!! I just have to share a couple of victories this morning.
#1 – For the last 5+ years I have struggled with sleeping. I would routinely wake up between 1 and 2AM and be awake for a long time before I could go back to sleep. Or I would toss and turn for what seemed like an eternity before falling into a very restless sleep only to wake a couple of hours later.
Last night I actually slept through the night – no waking at 2AM, no waking to go to the bathroom. I intentionally didn’t set an alarm, and slept until 8AM. I woke up slowly and it was glorious!
#2 – I have been a late night snacker for, well probably, ever. I always reached for popcorn, chocolate, a glass of wine, etc. I knew it was a bad habit and I actually kicked it for awhile when I was trying to lose 30 pounds. But I let the habit creep back. Now I only snack if I’m actually hungry – which I haven’t been on Whole30! I’m amazed at how little food (good, healthy, sugar free food) it takes to fill me up now. I don’t crave sweet things, and my salt cravings have greatly diminished.
I will slowly add back wine and some dairy, but my love affair with sugar (except for the very occasional dark chocolate!) is pretty much over. I am SO grateful for W30, this group of accountability partners and most of all, Ashley G. for gently prodding me and AH on this journey!
Stay strong!
Lori

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Week 1. Done.


We made it through the first week of Whole30! AH and I are committed to staying the course, but it has definitely taken some effort and discipline. I’ve planned and prepared more than I can remember doing before. I actually did some pre-cooking on Sunday to be ready for the week. I’ve read labels, researched brands and scoured Pinterest for recipes in order to find the best, tastiest food for this effort. I’m so thankful to be part of a Facebook group – these folks are so encouraging and helpful! It’s a place to post questions, rant a little and even share victories. I think I’d probably have quit after a few days without them.

If you’re doing Whole30 – or any healthy eating plan, good for you! I never imagined how much sugar, carbs and grains I was eating. Since cutting them out I’ve had more energy and been in a better mood than I have in – well – years. I don’t have cravings, I don’t need to snack (I’m a long time snacker, believe me) and I don’t even miss coffee. AH and I have decided to adopt a more Paleo style of eating after W30 is over – I don’t want to add sugar back in, and I’ll be severely limiting my grains and carbs as well. Wine will be a treat, not an every day occurrence. Chocolate will be the exception, not the rule. I will be healthier, happier and stronger. Happy New Me!

Joyfully,

Lori

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It’s been awhile since I’ve written, and much has happened. I’m changing direction a bit with this blog and I hope you’ll stick with me. If you want to read about my weight loss journey, you can peruse the archives!

I remember being 15 in 1974. Barely, but I remember. Anyone who was 50 years old was ancient. My mom turned 50 that year. Here is what I remember about my parents in 1974:

  • They didn’t seem to have much fun
  • I don’t recall them being very happy
  • I don’t ever remember them having friends over – and only occasionally did they go visit friends
  • They weren’t physically active
  • I thought they were really, really old

Understand I was the youngest of three, and by the time I was 13 my sister was married and my brother was in college. I’m sure my parents were pretty worn out by the time I was a teenager, and in all honesty they were pretty hands off. Luckily I was petrified of getting in trouble, so I was a pretty good kid.

My parents passed away within three months of each other (Dad in November, 2007 and Mom in February, 2008), not long before my 50th birthday in January of 2009. I remember that birthday very well. I was still struggling with grief (and probably undiagnosed depression) and life wasn’t much fun. At all. I was overweight, out of shape and unhappy. But I had no clue (or in all honesty, motivation) to change anything.

Fast forward to December, 2011. New Year’s Eve, to be exact. I decided I was sick and tired of being sick and tired and finally worked up the courage to do something about it. The short story? I went on a diet and exercise program and lost 30 pounds over the next 10 months. It wasn’t easy, believe me, but I did it. And I’ve keep 25 pounds of it off for 4 years.

There are a lot of blogs you can read, and in all honesty I don’t expect many people to read this one. It’s more for me than anything – does that sound selfish? Well, maybe it is, but I need to do this. I need to write to keep myself accountable so I never, ever go back to they way I was in 2011.

I believe my life really started over in 2012. I’ll share more in the next post…I hope you’ll be here when I come back.

Lori

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I didn’t want to run today. I woke up with a headache. It was foggy. And cool. And I didn’t get enough sleep. I almost went back to sleep. But I didn’t. I knew deep down inside that I would regret it if I didn’t go. So I got up, took some Advil, put on my running clothes and ran. 2.64 miles (without walking!) – a personal best.

What’s keeping you from exercising? What keeps you from going on that diet, eating healthier, drinking more water, improving your quality of life? For me it was the fact that I hated to run and wanted to eat what I wanted without thinking about it. That all changed last January. I finally got tired of feeling tired all the time and looking at my overweight, out of shape body in the mirror. So I got up, put my workout clothes on and went to the gym. I started counting calories (thank you, MyFitnessPal!) and being aware of everything I put in my mouth. And gradually I started losing weight. It didn’t happen overnight, but I didn’t gain that extra 25 pounds overnight either. By May I had lost 25 pounds – and looked and felt better than I had in over 25 years!

It’s difficult to adequately express the changes I’ve experienced over the last 10 months. So much about me is different – and it’s not just the size of my clothes. I think differently now. I’m very aware of everything I eat – not obsessively, but just in a “do I really want to eat this” kind of mentality. I am more motivated to exercise than I ever thought possible and enjoying more than I could have imagined. I actually arrange my daily schedule to make sure I have time to run. Weird. My husband and daughters look at me and ask “who are you”?? It’s funny, but they are all very proud of me – which feels so good.

In just a few days I’ll be running my first 5k. And I do mean running. My goal is to run the entire race – no walking. Someone asked what my goal was after that. I’ll definitely run another 5k, maybe two, then I want to train for a 10k. The ultimate goal is to run a half-marathon (13.1 miles) before I turn 55. Wow. To go from not running at all to even thinking about running a 5k, to even considering running a half-marathon is nothing short of amazing.

I can do this. I will do this.

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

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Well, here we are, 9 months out from the beginning of my weight loss/healthier living/new me journey. My weight is holding steady, I have way more energy and I’m looking forward to running my first 5k in October. It’s amazing, really. Just one year ago I didn’t even want to get off the couch. Now I’m rearranging my schedule so I can get some gym time before work! Seriously, who am I?

We just returned from a week-long vacation in Missouri and I actually achieved some 2012/2013 goals ahead of schedule. When I learned to slalom waterski back in June (has it just been three months??), I determined that I wanted to be good enough to need my own waterski by early 2013. Well, my AH decided the time was NOW, so we bought a new ski! I also wanted to graduate to a shorter rope (which means I ski A LOT faster) – boom! Done! I never thought I would love waterskiing enough to want to ski in cool weather, but I bought a wetsuit before we left and actually used it on our last morning at the lake. 3 pretty big goals reached in one week. That’s amazing.

I have, in the past, been really bad about setting out to do something, keeping it up for a while and then slacking off. My weight loss experiences have pretty much been that way. I’d lose some weight; keep it off for a couple of months and then wham! It went back on – plus some. I’d decide to let my short hair grow out, last a couple of months and then whack! I’d cut it all off. I’ve not been too good in the “stick to it” department. Except in my marriage!

This mindset change has kind of taken me by surprise. I’m more determined to keep up this weight loss/fitness journey than ever in my life. I can’t wait to get to January 1, 2013 and celebrate my weight loss success! I can’t wait to get to June 1, 2013 and celebrate keeping off those 25 pounds for a whole year. I told my AH last week this is the first time in a VERY long time I can honestly say I’m proud of myself about something. I set some goals, persevered and accomplished them.

AH asked me what the difference was this time. I have to say it’s that I finally decided to make changes for myself. I wasn’t trying to please anyone – not my family, friends, whoever. This was for me – I made the decision outside of any other consideration. I also “went public”. I started blogging about my journey from day 1 so it was out there for whoever wanted to follow along. It’s definitely kept me accountable, even though I’m not even sure how many people actually read this thing.

I say all this to encourage you today. What is it in your life that’s always seemed just out of reach? What have you always wanted to do, but never had the courage to try? Believe me, you’re never too old to do something totally new and different! Pursue that dream. Lose the weight. Take that trip. Set some goals and get moving! You won’t regret it – and your life will be much richer on the other side.

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

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Scary. Intimidating. Uncomfortable. Weird. Freaky. What the heck? These are just a few of my reactions to a recent request from a friend and coworker. I’ve been asked to consider something that is WAY out of my comfort zone. Honestly my first reaction was “there’s no way on this earth I could/would ever consider doing something like that”. Seriously. What was this outrageous request you ask? Spending two Fridays a month teaching a values based curriculum to middle school students. Yep, that’s right. Straight into the lion’s den. I mean, middle schoolers eat their own, don’t they? They’re rude, disrespectful and difficult. Why would I willingly put myself in this situation?

As I was wrestling with this question I stopped by my friend’s office and read some of the many handmade cards she received at the end of the last school year. Every card thanked her for taking the time to mentor, encourage and inspire. Every card mentioned something important learned during those classes. Photos of the classes showed smiles on young faces so full of potential. I was inspired.

I’m still weighing whether or not to get involved. It would involve giving up some of my precious Friday freedom and committing to an entire school year. Do I have what it takes to encourage young people? Am I brave enough to face a classroom full of adolescents? Will they even respond to me, a middle aged woman with no teaching experience? When it boils down to it, what do I have to offer them?

In all honesty I’ll be praying about this opportunity for the next few days. I would ask for your prayers as well. This journey outside my comfort zone is definitely uncomfortable. But who says I’m supposed to stay comfortable? I’ll let you know my decision in the next week or so…

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

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Do or Do not. There is no try. The wise words of Yoda from Star Wars. Now that I am in the “maintenance” part of my weight loss/health journey, the statement makes a lot of sense. When I embarked on my weight loss program, I realized one of the pitfalls that had plagued (and sabotaged) my previous efforts. My words. I would say things like “I’m trying to lose X pounds”, “I would like to lose about X pounds”, etc. See what I mean? I would get all excited about losing weight, then when it didn’t come off fast enough I would get frustrated and give up. Granted, I have a propensity to start things and not finish them, but this was a pattern I desperately needed to change.

I’m still not sure why this weight loss journey has been so different. I know I’m different. This time my attitude is “I am going to lose 25 pounds”. “I will be healthier and more fit”. “I will keep the weight off!” There was no try, only do. I am determined. I am resolute. And I succeeded.

There are times in life when trying just isn’t enough. We have to purpose to do something or it will never get done. I had to decide to do something about my weight. Trying wouldn’t get it done. I had to make up my mind, devise a plan and put that plan into action. And I had to do this for me.

Too often we come to a decision about losing weight based on what others think or say. My awesome husband (AH) never chided me about my weight. Never said I looked fat. Never rejected me because of my weight. And I will be forever grateful for that unconditional love. Every time I’ve gone on a diet before it was because I thought someone else wanted me to lose weight. Wrong motivation. Recipe for failure. This time, I decided I wanted to be healthier. I wanted to be more fit. I wanted to be thinner. I decided, I did the work, I made it happen. And this time, there’s no going back.

This will sound like the opposite of what I just said, but it’s true: I did have support on this journey. I had cheerleaders to encourage me along the way. AH and my wonderful daughters, friends and co-workers encouraged me every day. When I thought about giving up, they reminded me how far I’d come. I literally could not have done it without them. They were the glue that held me together when I felt like falling apart.

What’s stopping you from losing weight? Yes, it’s hard work. Yes, it takes time and effort to prepare healthy meals instead of eating “fast” food. Yes, it’s a pain to log your meals and exercise. Yes, it takes a while to actually see the scale numbers move downward. Yes, drinking more water means you’ll have to pee more often. I know all that. But I promise you, it will be worth it when the pounds start coming off, your clothes fit looser and people start to notice. You will feel better. You will be healthier. You might even be happier. It’s worth it.

There is no try. Just do it.

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

P.S. If you like this blog, please rate it! I’d love to hear your comments on this or any of my posts. It’s nice to know people actually read this thing!

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