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Posts Tagged ‘commitment’


Happy Monday!

This is day 29 of our Whole30 adventure and I have to say, I’m amazed at how relatively easy it has been. Most importantly, my wonderful AH has been totally onboard with the plan – I don’t think I would have made it otherwise. We’ve also had a great Facebook group – these folks have shared recipes, given encouragement and helped us all stay on track. We’re even continuing the group after W30 is over – everyone has noticed so many positive changes we don’t want to quit!

I am eager to continue trying new recipes, looking for ways to slowly add back in some things (like…wine…not gonna lie, I’ve missed wine!) and maintaining my new healthy lifestyle.

I’d love to hear your Whole30 experiences! Please comment and let’s start a conversation!

To your health!

Lori

P.S. My music career is taking off! You can hear some of my music and see videos at: http://www.loriyearymusic.com

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It’s hard to believe, but just one year ago today I was 25 pounds heavier than I am today. I was overweight, out of shape, frustrated and to be brutally honest, depressed. I didn’t want to go anywhere, didn’t like the way I looked, and felt old and tired at the ripe old age of 52. I didn’t want to walk around the house, much less walk around the block. I was unmotivated to do much of anything except sit on the couch and feel sorry for myself. It was a very ugly pity party.

The culmination of this sad state of affairs and the impetus for a much needed life change came on New Year’s Eve. I literally had nothing to wear to an evening of dancing with our best friends. Nothing. None of my dresses fit, I had one pair of black slacks that still fit (although a little tight) and no nice top to wear that was suitable for the occasion. My awesome husband went shopping with me and helped me pick out a dressy top (i.e. tunic/tent). I then proceeded to avoid the camera all night. I was the one taking the pictures or hiding behind others when I couldn’t avoid the group shots. A couple of photos were taken though, and I cried when I saw them. Unfortunately, the camera doesn’t lie. I finally had to admit I needed to lose weight.

I embarked on my diet and exercise adventure on January 1, 2012. I set goals – some fairly reasonable and a couple of “stretch” goals: Lose 25 pounds, learn to slalom waterski, improve my skiing enough to buy my own ski by the 2013 season and run a 5k race before the end of 2013. I worked hard, counted calories like a crazy women (thanks, MyFitnessPal!) and gradually started losing weight. I began to make time for exercise, drank lots of water and green tea and learned that portion sizes are my friends. I started out slow – going to the gym 2 or 3 times a week. 30 minutes of walking on the treadmill was about all I could handle. I gradually increased my time and days until I was at the gym 6 days a week. I even gave up my Sunday afternoon nap (much to my family’s surprise!) to go to the gym. By May I had lost 25 pounds, gone from a size 12 to a size 2/4 and accomplished a previously unreachable goal. In June I learned to slalom waterski and skied the whole summer – improving enough to buy my own ski in September – ahead of my goal! I started training for a 5k race in August and ran my first one on October 27th. I even set a personal record of 11:45 per mile. I ran my second 5k in November (with my awesome husband!) and set another personal record of 11:35 per mile.

Just thinking about all I’ve overcome and accomplished this year makes me proud of myself – something I haven’t felt in a very long time. This journey was about much more than just losing weight. I’m discovering things about myself and setting new goals for 2013. I’m looking forward to the New Year with more excitement and anticipation than I can ever remember having. There’s a spiritual aspect to my journey as well. Aside from the physical weight, I’ve been carrying some emotional and spiritual baggage for far too long. Hurts and wounds from the past have weighed me down and kept me from moving forward. It’s time to let them go, start fresh and get ready to run the race God has set before me. Ready? Set? GO!

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

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My Awesome Husband (AH) and I recently celebrated our 31st wedding anniversary. It’s quite a milestone for us, and one we plan to celebrate thoroughly.  We started by simply dancing in our living room to some great James Taylor songs. Looking back over the years I can pinpoint times that challenged us, threatened to divide us, brought us closer and strengthened our love for each other. Sometimes all those things happened at one time! We’ve been through a lot together, and I can honestly say we’re stronger and more in love now than ever before. That’s not to say our marriage is perfect by any stretch – we are two very flawed human beings who decided to get married – and stay married – no matter what life brought our way.

Marriage is tricky. It brings together two people from very different backgrounds, belief systems, schools of thought and puts them together in the most intimate relationship on earth. We lived in different cities throughout our dating and engagement – never living in the same town until after we got married. There was no “normal” dating relationship, so there were a lot of things that never got discussed or dealt with. So much we didn’t know about each other! A long distance relationship is definitely not something I would recommend.

I came from a family where my mom was basically the one in control. Dad was great, but he generally just went along with whatever my mom wanted. Rhett’s parents worked as partners and made most of their decisions together, but his dad was definitely the head of the family. Needless to say our first few years were difficult as we navigated through the dynamics of those differing views. I fully expected AH to just go along with whatever I decided we needed to do. Not so much. We had many heated discussions about how decisions were going to be made in our family. For about 7 years.

You see, we’re both fairly stubborn, so it wasn’t easy to come to agreement. I wanted AH to just give it up and let me run things, but he didn’t see it that way. After many tears, arguments and frustration I finally realized that what I really wanted was to have someone else take the reins of our relationship, so I quit fighting it and truly let God become the third person in our marriage. AH and I agreed that God knew better than we did the best direction for our family and it made all the difference. We prayed through decisions and didn’t move forward until we both felt comfortable with it. We really talked through a problem, took it to God and allowed Him to help us sort it out. It didn’t mean things always ran smoothly, but it was so, so much better!

When we allow God to lead and guide in our marriage, let Him “drive” so to speak, we find that the road is a lot less bumpy, twisty and rough. We still have to constantly adjust our attitudes. Feelings still get hurt. Difficult times are guaranteed. Toes occasionally get stepped on. But we’re still dancing. And that’s what really matters.

Taking joy in the journey after 31 years,

Lori

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I have to admit, I’ve never been one to enjoy exercising. That’s pretty much the understatement of the century. No, I’m the girl who avoided exercise like the plague. Did everything possible to get out of gym class, said I was allergic to running, and avoided team sports at all costs. Seriously, I am and never have been considered “athletic”. And I’m totally fine with that. Even at 7 months into this process I still sometimes struggle to workout.

That said, the fact that I’ve been to the gym 4-5 times a week since January 1st is quite an amazing feat. I actually joined the gym in 2011 with every intention of “getting fit”. But then I got the flu, had minor surgery, broke a nail, went out of town, went on vacation, well, you get the picture. Basically I made up enough excuses that going to the gym just got pushed aside. No more.

Since I started dieting and exercising I’ve lost 25 pounds and most of my dear friend and constant companion “the belly” is gone. I did a 21 day cleanse in January which gave me a good head start, but I haven’t really been on a “diet”. I’ve counted calories. You might think that’s the same thing, but for me it’s made a world of difference. I’ve never been one who can eat a prescribed set of foods at every meal. I like variety. I need to be able to eat what I want – within reason – and still lose weight. I did a lot of research and found my personal solution. I have a great app for my iPhone – www.myfitnesspal.com – that is my accountability partner. It tracks my calorie goals for the day (1200 to start), exercise goals and basically keeps me on the straight and narrow. It has a huge database of foods (both grocery and restaurant) so I can find almost anything I might want to eat. I can even add recipes for cooking at home and it calculates the calories.

I thought I would lose weight faster, but I’m actually glad it’s been a struggle. I gained and lost the same 2-5 pounds several times before I got below the initial 10 pound loss. It was frustrating, annoying and there have been times I just want to forget the whole thing. Then I look in the mirror. And at the growing pile of clothes that are now too big. And I head back to the gym. Even on Saturday.

I’ve realized much during this process. There are certain things I know I shouldn’t eat anymore. There are things I should only eat on special occasions. And there are things I never knew I liked that are really good for me. One great side benefit is that we’re not eating out nearly as much – so our budget is much happier (and so is my handsome hubby!). Mexican food (once my “at least once a week, maybe twice” necessity) isn’t nearly as appealing. I own a food scale and I use it. Portion control is key (no more eating crackers straight out of the box. No matter how “healthy” they are, they have calories!!). Soft drinks are a thing of the past. Water tastes great! Consistency is vital! You get the idea.

I’m starting to get out of my comfort zone now. One of my goals in January was to learn to slalom waterski this year. On June 17th I acheived that goal. And I’m already skiing better than I anticipated. Another goal is to run a 5k between now and next spring. (Seriously, who am I??) Last week I went to Utah to visit a friend and actually hiked for the first time. About 4 miles. Up a mountain. And loved it! I might even be persuaded to go again. If you only knew how amazing this is!

Change is good. I’m healthier, happier and thinner than I’ve been in at least 10 years. Now that’s progress!

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

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6 months into my journey to health, I’m surprisingly still committed to it. Seriously. The longest I think I ever stayed on a “diet” before was 21 days, and that was a cleanse. I guess I never found a program, diet, whatever that brought results. Until now.

I’ve discovered that losing weight is a lot like marriage. It takes time, commitment and determination to stick with it through the day in, day out challenges. Time is something I was not willing to take before. Time to exercise, time to log my food intake, time to think about what I put in my mouth. Commitment was always a challenge – I just wanted to eat those chips, cookies, ice cream – more than I wanted to lose weight. Determination was never a strong suit. I get distracted (squirrel!) and bored easily. One look at all my unfinished craft projects will verify that. I joined a gym over a year ago, and after 3 or 4 visits early on, I didn’t go back until this past January.

Now here I am, 25 pounds lighter, 4 sizes smaller, in better shape than ever and committed to staying this way. Needless to say, I’ve changed. I take the time to log my food intake every day. The iPhone app “My Fitness Pal” reminds me if I forget to log my lunch. I record my weight and exercise every day so I keep track of my calories. I don’t freak out if I go over my calorie count for the day, but I do watch it pretty closely. If I gain a pound or two, I review my diet and make small changes: reduce calories, exercise a bit more, change things up. I now understand what I can and cannot eat. And it’s really not that painful. Do I still want that cookie? You betcha. Another glass of wine? Don’t mind if I do. But I’ll cut out something else and drink tons of water to get back on track. It’s all about knowing your body. I’m committed to keeping the weight off, determined not to go back to my old way of eating. I’m giving away all those larger clothes. No “backup” wardrobe for me.

I went to lunch with a friend recently at one of my favorite Mexican restaurants. The old me would have motored through a bowl of chips by myself and started in on a second one. This time I took out a “serving” of chips, put them on a plate and ate only those chips. My friend did the same thing and we were so proud of ourselves we took a picture of the almost-full-bowl-of-chips! It’s all about making a decision and sticking with it. Time. Commitment. Determination. It pays off. I promise.

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

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Marriage Part Two – After “the video incident”

Once I realized God wanted to “refine” me, I figured He could just swoop in and make it happen. Or at least that’s what I hoped. I had no clue how messy the process was going to be. You see, God doesn’t do anything halfway. He is an all or nothing God Who loves me so much that He won’t leave me the way I am. Great for Him. Way more difficult than I ever imagined.

My journey in self-improvement began with self-reflection. I had to take a hard look at how I related to my husband, my children, and my friends. First on the agenda, though, was my attitude toward God. I grew up in a Christian home, raised in the Baptist church, so I knew about God and could compete with the best in a Bible “sword” drill. I had good “head” knowledge, but was severely lacking in true heart knowledge.  I basically had religion, not relationship. God began to gently, but firmly show me that He wanted more than my acknowledgement of Him as Savior; He wanted my whole heart to be fully and completely surrendered to Him. This was a big step for me – I really didn’t want to give Him that much control!

When I fully surrendered to my Father’s will for my life I was amazed at how quickly He began to work on my attitude. It still wasn’t easy, but now I was willing to be changed. There were times when I would drag my heels (or even DUG in my always very cute/sassy heels), but God would remind me of my commitment to Him and I would eventually get there. During this process I gradually changed my attitude and began to understand that this new “me” wasn’t a different person; I was a better me in every aspect of my life.  Amazingly enough, I was happier! I was more content with my life and more willing to move to the next step: learning to submit to my husband.

Oh, friend – the most challenging part of this journey was just beginning…

Taking joy in the journey,

Lori

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