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Archive for the ‘working out’ Category

bilbl_superThis morning I woke up in just enough time to head to the spin class I’d been planning to attend for more than a week.  Actually, today’s spin class has been years in the making.  I’ve wanted to try spinning forever, but was extremely intimidated by the proximity of the bikes to each other.  When I was over 300 pounds, I was worried that I’d spill over into my neighbor’s personal space.  Not a great feeling.

There was the time, back in August 2011, when I went into the empty spin room and spent 5 minutes on the bike.  I know I didn’t even get “out of the saddle”/stand up on the bike, because I had no idea what I was doing.   I also didn’t change the tension at all.  I do remember that I felt the pain in the pubic bone that comes with spinning.

So I prepared for that pain by buying some padded spin pants that had a skirt overlay.  I’d first seen them on Emmie’s blog, and because I was convinced I was eventually going to try spinning, I decided the investment was worth it.  I remember in August 2011 that I was embarrassed to wear them in public because of how tight they were.  The skirt was almost indecent because my big booty was causing it to ride way up in the back, barely covering. Here’s the post from December 2011 where the pants showed up again.  This time, I actually missed the spin class because I was fooling around with the fit of the pants, trying to camouflage how tight they were on me.

I haven’t tried spinning in all this time, but today was the day.  My gym offers lots of spin classes Monday-Thursday: at 5:45am, 9am, and 6pm.  I figured the 5:45am class would be packed, as would the 6pm, and since I was off, 9am seemed like the ticket.  Because I’d heard all the horror stories about how much the spin seat hurts the pubic bone, I decided to wear the padded, skirted pants even though they were way too big.  Like at least 3 sizes too large! Let’s compare the fit, shall we?

Left - 12/2011 Right - today, 2/2014

Left – 12/2011  Right – today, 2/2014
The difference in these two photos is really striking, especially because I’m sucking in my stomach in both shots. Dramatic difference!!

I don't know if you can tell, but the skirt was way, way longer today.  Less of a booty keeping it up!

I don’t know if you can tell, but the skirt was way, way longer today. Less of a booty keeping it up!

And here’s a front view picture, just for good measure.

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So many of my workout clothes are just way, way too big. This top is supposed to be one of those snug, dry-weave tanks, but you can see that it’s super loose on me. I’ve gotta hit an activewear sale soon.

Anyway, back to the class.  I got there about 10 minutes early, just to make sure that I had time to chat with the teacher and make sure I had the bike all set up.  I found out that the seat should be set so that it’s in the middle of my hip when I’m standing up next to it.  I also made sure that when I sat on the bike my legs were still slightly bent, not completely straight.  The teacher showed me how to change the tension, and told me that I could stay a “half step behind” if I wanted to; meaning I could take it a bit easier than the rest of the class since it was my first time.  You guys know that there was no way I was going to take it easy, right?!

The class itself was so great!  The teacher started off the class with Pharrell’s “Happy,” which couldn’t have been more perfect! In fact, take 4 minutes right now and listen to it.  It’s guaranteed to make you feel fantastic!

The teacher immediately turned off the lights in the room.  I’m not really sure why – maybe so that we wouldn’t focus on how we looked in that room which was surrounded by mirrors?  At one point during the class, I caught a glimpse of a girl in the mirror across the room and my first thought was how good she looked on the bike, how confident she seemed as she pedaled.  Only, she didn’t look like any of the women in the class.  I went one by one trying to figure out which one she was, until I realized – SHE WAS ME!  I can’t tell you how amazing that felt.  That I thought that I looked great during an exercise class is a new first.  That and the fact that I wasn’t the biggest girl in the room.  And I wasn’t worried at all about being too big for the bike – there was plenty of room on either side of me today.  NSVs abounded!

I felt empowered by how strong my legs were, and how well I kept up, even when we were “climbing.”  Climbing is when you slowly increase the tension in the bike higher and higher to mimic climbing a hill or mountain.  Sometimes these climbs were done “in saddle” (sitting down) and other times the climbs were done while standing the entire time. She also had us go on “mixed climbs” where we alternated between sitting and standing as we increased the tension.  I really enjoyed how the teacher used the music to help us get through the tough parts of the workout, and I can see that a really great playlist can make all the difference.

To be honest, the worst part of the entire class was when we were “in saddle” because my pubic bone just killed me.  I kept squirming and moving around as I sat there, trying to get in any position that would relieve a little of the pain.  I can’t imagine what it would’ve felt like without the padding in my pants!  I’m still slightly sore right now, 8 hours later, as I write this.  Everyone says the pain goes away and you get used to it the more you do it.  Still, I’m going to have to dig out that bike seat cover that I’d bought a few years ago, because I will take any extra padding I can get.  Even with the pain, I absolutely loved the spin class!

This is the photo I posted on Instagram this morning.  See how big that smile is in both of those photos?  That’s because I felt so accomplished, so proud.  I finally did something that I’d been wanting to do forever.  And not only did I do it, but I loved it.  I was good at it.  My strong legs took me through the entire class, and while I was “glowing” within 10 minutes, I felt beautiful.

2014-02-18 10.04.51Today’s Adventure in Fitness was amazing! So much so that I’m going to start going to spin classes at least once a week. And I’m going to treat myself to a session at Soul Cycle sometime soon, to check another thing off my Fitness Bucket List.

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2014-02-02 09.10.57

February – love is in the air, and this month is going to be all about loving myself enough to continue making 2014 my year to shine. I’m vowing here and now that I will reach my goal weight in 2014. What an amazing accomplishment it will be! To achieve my goals, I’m going to focus on the basics – eating well, drinking lots of water, taking my vitamins and getting in 5 cardio workouts a week. I’ve started strength training with #ToneItUp and their #LoveYourBody series is helping see just how strong I am as I change my body. Sunday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the weekend. This month is going to be all about loving all the little things that make life special. My Sunday progress updates will be called Fabulous February Weigh-Ins.

Week 38 was stressful and challenging, but I’m happy to say I made it through better off than I began.  It wasn’t a terrible week, just one where everything seemed to be running at a fever-pitch.  I did get my workouts in, and I’m noticing some great changes in my body.

So, what did the scale show?!

When I weighed in this morning, I was 193.8, which is a loss of 0.8 pounds this week, and a loss of 83.2 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 121.2 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 43.8 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight of 150 pounds. I’m really thankful for a loss this week, because of my poor choices on Friday.  Let’s be honest, it was one meal, and I still stayed under my calories for the day.  I made good choices the rest of the time, but with the challenges of the week, I’m happy to see a loss at all.  Plus, last week I had a big loss, and that’s usually followed by a smaller one.

One of the things that struck me this week were the changes I’m noticing in my body.  When I’m laying flat on my back about to do some ab work, I can really see and feel my ribs, and my hip bones are becoming apparent.  When I look at myself from a side-view standing at the mirror, I can see the start of definition in my stomach, and I’m definitely seeing a very slim profile. All of these changes are the result of my weight loss, sure, but I do think it’s because of the toning I’ve been doing with the #ToneItUp program.  I started four weeks ago, and I really wish I would’ve taken measurements at that time, but I didn’t.  Today the ToneItUp trainers will be sending a new set of workouts to get ready for spring, and I’m going to make sure to take measurements and photos for comparison at the end of the 6-week plan.

On a side note, I’m really upset that I haven’t been taking measurements all along since my surgery.  I meant to, but one thing or another would distract me and then I never did.  I do have some measurements from way back pre-op, March 2012, when I weighed 297 lbs or so. I just went back on this blog and I noticed that I wasn’t weighing in regularly at that time, probably because I was having such a hard time losing weight and regular weigh-ins were stressing me out.  Plus, there was more than a bit of denial there – if I  wasn’t seeing that the scale wasn’t moving, I wasn’t having to admit to my failings.  Regardless, when I take my measurements later today, I’m going to do a major comparison just for fun. My plan is to start taking measurements every Sunday, along with progress photos, so that I can start recording the changes in my body, and post about the progress once a month or so.

This week I have the entire week off, and since I didn’t end up going to Tahoe (I decided to save the money I would’ve spent and put it towards my Hawaiian vacation in April), I’m going to spend the week trying out a bunch of fitness classes that I can’t normally attend.  Here’s my cardio plan for the week (I’ll add in the toning once I get the week of workouts from ToneItUp):

  • Sunday: Run/walk with Di. She and I have been meeting up every Sunday morning, and I really look forward to this time to catch up and then get our sweat on.
  • Monday: Pilates. I tried Pilates a long time ago, and liked it for the first 10 minutes, but my almost-300 pound frame just couldn’t do most of the moves, so I left the class early. I can’t wait to see how much more I’m able to do now.
  • Tuesday: Spin. This is the class I’ve been dying to try, but was also completely intimidated at the same time.  Not because I didn’t think I could keep up, because even at my heaviest weight, I had so much strength in my legs/thighs, but because of my girth and the close proximity of the bikes to one another in the spin room.  The bikes are literally on top of each other, and when I was at my heaviest, I felt like I’d be overflowing into my neighbor’s space, and that just wasn’t something I wanted to deal with.  So I’ve avoided the class for all this time.  I have a feeling I’m going to love spin and it’s going to become one of my regular things.
  • Wednesday: Warm Yoga Flow. This is a vinyasa yoga class done in a room heated to about 90 degrees.  I love taking heated yoga because you feel so much better afterward.  In the past I avoided any sort of vinyasa or flow class because the poses moved too quickly for me to keep up with, but I think I’ll be able to keep pace much better now.
  • Thursday: Zumba Step. I love Zumba and haven’t been a class in a really long time.  I somehow got out of the Saturday morning routine of going.  I think the fact that one of my favorite teachers stopped teaching at my location also had something to do with it.  When I heard that 24 Hour Fitness was featuring this new class, which includes a step, I thought it sounded like a fun thing to try. Right now the Zumba Step class is only offered in the middle of the day during the week, so this is a rare opportunity for me to try it.  If I like it, I’ll definitely seek it out once summer starts.
  • Friday: Body Combat. This is a Les Mills class and the description taken straight from their website says, “This fiercely energetic program is inspired by mixed martial arts and draws from a wide array of disciplines such as karate, boxing, taekwondo, tai chi and muay thai. During this ultimate warrior workout, you’ll strike, punch, kick and kata your way through calories to superior cardio fitness.” I’m not sure if I’m physically ready for the class, but I figured it doesn’t hurt to try.

All of these classes are brand new to me, and I’m excited to try them.  You guys know how much I love variety in my workouts, so this is something that I’m really looking forward to.  A few of the classes, like Spin and Body Combat, are offered several times a week at the gym, so if I like them I can take them regularly. Warm Yoga Flow is offered a few times throughout the week at the yoga studio I like to go to, but I only have a limited number of classes that I’ve paid for, so I’ll need to space those classes out a bit if I like it.  Pilates and Zumba Step are only offered in the morning during the week, so I’ll have to wait for summer if I really like those.

I really can’t wait to see how I perform in these classes, and I think each of them will offer a challenge, but one that I can achieve. So many times in the past, I had the desire to take classes like these, but physically I just wasn’t up to the task.  Not to mention that feeling of “other” that I got whenever I looked around a room and saw that I was, by far, the biggest person in there.  What a different experience it will be this time! Just another way that this weight loss has transformed (and is transforming) my life.

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Until next Sunday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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2014-02-02 09.10.57

February – love is in the air, and this month is going to be all about loving myself enough to continue making 2014 my year to shine. I’m vowing here and now that I will reach my goal weight in 2014. What an amazing accomplishment it will be! To achieve my goals, I’m going to focus on the basics – eating well, drinking lots of water, taking my vitamins and getting in 5 cardio workouts a week. I’ve started strength training with #ToneItUp and their #LoveYourBody series is helping see just how strong I am as I change my body. Sunday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the weekend. This month is going to be all about loving all the little things that make life special. My Sunday progress updates will be called Fabulous February Weigh-Ins.

Week 37 was wonderful! Throughout the week, I felt lighter and smaller, and my clothes were showing all the hard work I’d been putting into my workouts.  I made some really delicious meals that made me feel like I was nourishing my body in a really creative way.  This week a lot of new people complimented me on my weight loss, the sweetest of which was one of the custodians at school who is so shy and meek – when he told me that I look great and to “keep it up,” it really made me smile.  And I topped it all off with a fantastic shopping trip that became a milestone.

So, what did the scale show?!

When I weighed in this morning, I was 194.6, which is a loss of 2.8 pounds this week, and a loss of 82.4 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 120.4 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 44.6 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight of 150 pounds. This week’s weight big loss was so important for me, because all of my hard work is paying off.  Finally my body has relaxed into the strength training exercises I’ve been doing with #ToneItUp, and I think I’m really getting the metabolic benefits of toning.  I worked hard with my cardio, as well.  I had tons of variety this week: elliptical, bike, walking, and I also went to the gym twice to get back into the run/walk intervals.  (More on that in a minute). I kept my meals really interesting and delicious with dinners like grilled salmon, sauteed scallops, grilled sirloin tips, and a breakfast-for-dinner scramble.  Lunches were just as good: I turned the leftover grilled salmon and sirloin into amazing salads with arugula.  All in all, it was such a great week, and I love that it all showed up on the scale, too.

As I mentioned, I got back to the run/walks this week, and I have to say, they’ve been a lot more difficult for me than they were before my cold.  The main reason is that I’ve been pushing myself with the speed, and I think I need to ease up on that a bit.  I’ve been trying to keep the running at a 5.0 pace, but right now, that’s just a bit too fast for me to maintain for an entire 3-minute cycle, so I’ve been cutting it down to 2 minutes, which is less than ideal.  I’m meeting my friend Di to do another run/walk session a bit later this morning, and my plan is to take my pace down to 4.5 and maintain that for 3 minutes so I can get back to a strong 3/1 pace.  (3 minutes running, 1 minute walking).

This week I’m looking forward to keeping lots of variety in my cardio workouts – run/walk intervals, recumbent bike, elliptical, flow yoga (since I had such a great experience on Saturday), and of course walking Sofi.  I’ll also continue the ToneItUp strength training, which I’m really enjoying.  I’ve loved being active for a long time now, but I’m finding that my workouts are actually becoming my hobby, and I miss doing them on my rest days.  I can see a future where fitness moves into more than just a hobby for me, and becomes a profession.

i-workout-because-i-love-my-body-not-because-i-hate-it

Until next Sunday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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Happy Monday! I’m so glad it’s February.  It’s always been one of my favorite months, because of Valentine’s Day, my mom’s birthday, and more recently the fact that I get a week off of work for President’s Week.  Plus, there’s something about a short month that makes it more enjoyable.

If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section at: www.alltheweigh.com so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

FMM: Random Questions

1. Did you watch the Super Bowl?  If so, what was your favorite part? I did watch it, but it was such a blowout that it was hard to take.  As much as the Seahawks are bitter rivals of my 49ers, I will say that I’m happy that the loyal fans of Seattle who have stuck by their team in so many down years are finally getting a huge, and well-deserved, winning season to celebrate.  My favorite part of the whole spectacle was the “Puppy Love” commercial:

2. What is the weather like where you live?  This weekend we got a bit of much-needed rain, but this morning we’re back to sunny, cool weather. I am glad to see a bit of rain in the extended forecast, because they’re saying we’re going to have a serious drought issue on our hands before too long.
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3. When is your birthday?  July 2nd

4. Do you prefer sparkling water or flat water? I’m not supposed to have carbonation after my WLS, so flat water for me these days.

5. How many hours did you sleep last night?  5 1/2 which is average for me.

6. What is your favorite day of the week?  Saturday – I love getting up and having the day spread out before me.  Although to be honest, most Saturdays are tasked with lots of errands and To Do’s, but on the rare occasion where I don’t have lots to do, I love having a free day with another one right after it.

7. If you had to choose between riding a bike or swimming, which would you choose?  Gosh, this would be a really difficult decision, but if pressed, I’d have to say ride my bike because I could do it more often throughout the year and in lots of different locales.  But swimming is definitely one of my favorite activities, too.

8. How often do you eat red meat?  Once every couple of weeks.

9. What time did you wake up this morning?  5:45am  – I slept in a bit!

10. Do you have any goals for the week? This week I’m looking forward to cooking really healthy, delicious meals and  working out (cardio + toning) 5 times. The main goal is to get back to my run/walk intervals, now that the cold is gone. 

Now it’s your turn to answer the questions!   And also be sure to go back to Kenlie’s blog and leave a link to your FMM post in the comments!  I really encourage you to comment on as many people’s posts as you can – I’ve met some fantastic people through FMM.  You never know who you’ll meet today.

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2014-02-02 09.10.57

February – love is in the air, and this month is going to be all about loving myself enough to continue making 2014 my year to shine. I’m vowing here and now that I will reach my goal weight in 2014. What an amazing accomplishment it will be! To achieve my goals, I’m going to focus on the basics – eating well, drinking lots of water, taking my vitamins and getting in 5 cardio workouts a week. I’ve started strength training with #ToneItUp and their #LoveYourBody series is helping see just how strong I am as I change my body. Sunday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the weekend. This month is going to be all about loving all the little things that make life special. My Sunday progress updates will be called Fabulous February Weigh-Ins.

Week 36 was perfect in its normalcy: there were a few long workdays, but I was able to come home and get my workouts in anyway.    Best of all, I didn’t let the cold stop me, and I think working out through it was actually what helped me get better. This week I also made great meals for myself, and even found a bit of time for pampering.

So, what did the scale show?!

When I weighed in this morning, I was 197.4, which is a loss of 0.8 pounds this week, and a loss of 79.6 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 117.6 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 47.4 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight 0f 150 pounds. I’m glad to see a loss on the scale this week after last week’s gain.  The scale actually showed an even greater loss at one point this week, but then popped back up a bit.  I think my body is still adjusting to these #ToneItUp workouts, but even with this somewhat meager loss, I’m still really enjoying them.  I like seeing what my body can do, and in fact I’m ready to move up from my 5-lb dumbbells to 8-lb ones. Strength training is proving to be a really good way to challenge myself in a whole new way.

Even though I got in 5 cardio sessions, I took the week off of my run/walk intervals because running was a bit too strenuous for my lungs, but I’m hoping to get back to it a bit later this week.  I’m finding out that taking any time off of running sets me back a bit; the good thing is that once I do start back to the intervals, it doesn’t take too long to feel back on track.  I’ve done a 5K every month since September (two in November!), but I won’t be doing one in February, because I’m just not ready.  I have signed up for two in March, which will be fun.

I’m looking forward to a great week ahead.  I have a few fun things planned, including going to a book signing in San Fran for Jen Lancaster’s newest book. I just got back from the grocery store and I bought a bunch of healthy, delicious ingredients for lunches and dinners that I can’t wait to prepare.  Plus, today is Superbowl Sunday, which is always a good time, even when my team isn’t it in:

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Until next Sunday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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POPSUGAR Select FitnessExciting news on the blog today!  A few weeks ago I was asked if I wanted to participate as a POPSugar Select Fitness blogger, and of course I jumped at the chance!! I was really flattered that this small, little blog got noticed in this way.  After providing my information and a few other details, I got my official notice just the other day.

When you go on the site, and click on the Fitness tab, scroll down about 3/4 of the way, and you’ll see my avatar!

POPSugarFitnessSelectThis is such a cool opportunity for my writing to get a wider audience.  I’m also going to get chances to try out and review new products and events. I’m also excited to join this new community of bloggers!  I’m looking forward to discovering new blogs, and I hope you’ll take a minute to check them out, too.  If you do, let them know I sent you.

I’ve been reading POPSugar for a few years now, and have gotten tons of ideas for health & fitness (including great recipes), beauty tips, and fashion trends.  They have offices based in San Francisco, so it’s great to support a local site. If you haven’t already, definitely check them out.

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bilbl_superToday’s AIF was another 5K, but this one was special because it was my first one with Tinkerbell.  She and I have each done many 5Ks on our own, and she even finished the Tinkerbell 1/2 Marathon in Disneyland last weekend, but up to this point, we’d never done a race together.  Our original plan was to do run/walk intervals, but my bad cold had other plans.  Tink was sweet enough to say she didn’t mind if we walked the whole 5K, because she was more interested in our experiencing it together than she was about getting to a certain timing.

jennyslight.org-grey-circle-1Jenny’s Light was founded by local professional triathlete Becky Lavelle & her family in response to the tragic and untimely passing of her twin sister Jenny and her nephew in December 2007.  Jenny’s Light is a non-profit foundation created to improve & save lives by increasing awareness of all perinatal mood disorders, including postpartum depression. ”  In looking up the background of the story, I discovered that Jenny actually shot and killed her baby son and then took her own life.  I can’t imagine the pain and loss her family must have felt, and I think it’s remarkable that her sister decided to turn that terrible tragedy into something that raises awareness of postpartum depression, and other perinatal mood disorders.

Since this was a more home-grown 5K where the profits went directly to the non-profit, it was a bit more bare-bones.  Meaning no cute race tee.  So I decided to make Tink and I our own shirts.  When we registered, they’d asked for a team name, and when Tink asked me what I thought it should be, I combined both our aliases and said, “TinkerBellas.”  We both loved it!  For the our tees, I knew I wanted to put our team name front and center and I because Tinkerbell wears a green fairy dress, I wanted to find a fun, bold green color.  I headed to Michael’s and came up with these:

2014-01-26 16.15.51Originally, I’d bought us crowns to wear, but the crowns fit pretty loose, and we both agreed that they’d probably be more of a bother during the race.  Still, for my first time hand-making a shirt like this, I’m pretty pleased with the way they turned out.  And can I brag for a second and say that my shirt was a size Medium!!  How cool is that?!  All these 5Ks are paying off!

2014-01-25 15.07.11 Yesterday Tink and I headed to Sports Basement to pick up our race packets, and I was so surprised at my low number.  I hoped it was going to bring us luck – Sweet 16!

This morning we headed to Vasona Lake Park early to make sure we’d get a parking spot. We had no idea how many people had signed up for the race, and because it’s not easy to park in the surrounding neighborhood, we didn’t want to take any chances.  Plus, this way, we had plenty of time to take lots of pics to capture how cute we looked:

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Do you love the wings, or what? I’d had those from an outfit during Spirit Week back in October, but they were the perfect color for this Tinkerbell-inspired outfit.

Tinkerbell had bought her skirt for the 1/2 marathon from a woman who makes  them specifically for that race. I love that she was able to use it again!

Tinkerbell had bought her skirt for the 1/2 marathon from a woman who makes them specifically for that race. I love that she was able to use it again!

I mean, there couldn't have been a cuter pair of racers in the whole 5K!

I mean, there couldn’t have been a cuter pair of racers in the whole 5K! (Even if we are both looking in two different directions for the photo).

And what 5K would be complete without a pre-race selfie?

And what 5K would be complete without a pre-race selfie?

We started out toward the back of the pack because we were going to walk.  The difficult thing about this course was that it was super narrow.  And when the racers who were doing the 10K were on their way back, we were sharing the course.  They didn’t block off any of the roads, as most 5Ks do, and they also didn’t prevent Sunday exercisers from being on the course, so we had to share the road with bikers, joggers, etc.  I’m really glad we didn’t run it, because I think it would’ve been pretty hectic.  As it was, Tink and I were able to catch up; I’d been wanting to hear all the details of her 1/2 marathon, and we finally had a good amount of time to dish.  That’s one thing I enjoy about walking 5Ks – it gives you the time to just walk and talk.  The thing that’s hard about walking is that you get antsy, or at least I do.  I want to go faster, finish sooner, and see how I can challenge myself.  But because this cold is moving into my chest, keeping our brisk pace was challenge in itself today.

At one point we were on a bit of an incline, and I was finding it really hard to breathe.  I started almost wheezing, and Tink just took my hand and said, “you can do it, Bella! We got this!!” And that one small moment of motivation was all I needed.  She totally sparked something in me, and from that point on, we were on our way!

2014-01-26 11.00.46

I was shocked when I saw these stats! We really were walking fast the entire time, and when we saw the 3-mile marker, we decided to finish strong and run the last .2 into the finish line.  I can’t believe we completed the race – walking most of it – in 47:13!!  I wasn’t expecting a PR in this race, but I ended up with one, for walking anyway!  I’m really proud of Team TinkerBellas!!

As soon as we were done, we put the top  down on my Beetle (it was already 71 degrees at 11am) and headed to Tink’s house, where her hubby had a delicious, healthy breakfast scramble, whole wheat English muffins, fruit salad, and coffee waiting for us.  How sweet is that?

Now that Tink and I have done one 5K together, she and I were already planning future ones where we’d run/walk: Mardi Gras Madness 5k, Wharf to Wharf (about 6 miles)…who knows how many we’ll end up doing.  One thing is for sure, we always have a blast when we’re together, and we enjoy motivating each other to do our best.  We’ve been in it together throughout our WLS weight loss journey, and we continue even now that we’re both nearing our own personal finish lines.  I’m so thankful that just over a year ago Tinkerbell reached out to me to support each other as we started a new year, bound to make it past our pre-op weight loss requirements to surgery, because I couldn’t imagine my life without her.  Team TinkerBellas for Life!!

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new year new me

2014 – a new year, a fresh start full of new beginnings. 2014 is going to be MY year to shine. I’m vowing here and now that I will reach my goal weight in 2014. What an amazing accomplishment it will be! To achieve my goals, I’m going to focus on the basics – eating well, drinking lots of water, taking my vitamins and getting in 5 workouts a week. Sunday weigh-ins will keep me accountable through the weekend. My resolution throughout the year is to keep focused while enjoying all the “newness” in my life. My Sunday progress updates will be called New Year, New ME Weigh-Ins.

Week 35 was a weird one.  Work was busy, I got a bad cold, and I started strength training using the workouts from Tone It Up.

So, what did the scale show?!

When I weighed in this morning, I was 198.2, which is a gain of 2.4 pounds this week, and a loss of 78.8 lbs since surgery! I’ve lost a total of 116.8 pounds from my highest weight!! I have 48.2 pounds to go to my ultimate goal weight 0f 150 pounds. This is my first gain in the 8+ months since surgery (and even a few months before that), and while it’s disappointing to see the scale move in this direction, it was completely expected.  My body always reacts this way whenever I start using weights.  Plus, I had a bad cold, and Mother Nature is coming calling any day now.  At one point this week I was up over 5 pounds, so this is actually my body calming down a bit.  I’m so glad that I know all of these things about my body so that I’m not freaking out over a gain like this, especially with as hard as I worked all week. I’m also glad that I’m still in Onederland, let’s be honest.

As I mentioned in my post the other day, I’ve started strength training using the Tone It Up (#TIU) workouts, and I’m really enjoying them.  I know they’re working because I’m sore, but I love that very few of the moves are too difficult for me to complete.  It shows how far I’ve come.  It’s nice to have another measure of fitness successes, beyond my cardio workouts.

Today Tinkerbell and I are doing our first 5K together, and I’m really looking forward to it.  Unfortunately, because of my cold, which is settling in my chest now, we’re going to walk the whole thing instead of doing run/walk intervals, as we’d planned.  I’m really glad that Tinkerbell doesn’t mind us taking it a bit easier.  Plus, this way we can spend the time catching up – last weekend she completed the Tinkerbell Half Marathon at Disneyland, something she’d been training for for over 6 months.  I’m so proud of her, and I can’t wait to hear all the details. (I’ll post more about our 5K later today).

This coming week, I’m looking forward to continuing the #TIU workouts (a new weekly series comes in my inbox today!), picking up my 3/1 run/walk intervals as soon as this cold dies down and my respiration is easier,  and hopefully seeing the scale go down at next Sunday’s weigh in.  The thing is, I’m in this for the long haul, and I’m not worried about one bad weigh in because I know I’m stronger than any reading on the scale.  Seeing a higher number isn’t going to put me in a tailspin now, as it would have in the past.  That’s true growth, that’s something to be proud of.

2014-01-26 06.23.42

Until next Sunday, my friends. I hope the scale treats you well, and that you have a wonderful week!

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bilbl_superThis week, I was determined to start strength training, no matter what.  I’m not going to lie, I was really intimidated by the thought of working out at the gym using the machines or the free weights.  And did I really need to do that type of training, anyway?  The more I’ve been reading on the different fitness blogs, the more I see that the trend that seems to work well for the goals I have in mind is using my own body weight resistance along with dumbbells and kettlebells.  After looking at so many great, free sites, I settled on Tone It Up because I remember reading their fitness tips in Self Magazine in the past. When I researched their website, I really liked the fitness community that Karena and Katrina have built. Plus, I saw their new show, Toned Up, on Bravo and thought they had cute, quirky personalities.  And I mean, look at them – they’re gorgeous!

be-you-tiful-love-your-body-series-toneitup-toned-up-bravo-tiu

Right now Tone It Up has a series they’re calling #LoveYourBody, which I think is so empowering.  When I signed up for the newsletter, which gives me free access to the #TIU community, daily workout routines, inspirational quotes, and some recipes, I loved their message about what I could do with the 4 weeks until Valentine’s Day:

Remember there are 4 FULL WEEKS left of the Love Your Body Series~ just in time for Valentine’s Day.  You have a HOT DATE with yourself!  Take a look at your calendar- commit to yourself and your goals.  In 4 weeks anything is possible…

♥ If you run/jog or walk 2 miles a day… that’s 2 MARATHONS you’ll complete by Valentine’s Day 

♥ Is weight loss your goal?  With the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan, you could lose 8-10 pounds in a healthy way

♥ Is toning your goal too?  You will see a major difference in muscle tone with the workouts below

♥ If you compliment 1 woman a day from now until Valentine’s Day… that’s 26 women who won’t forget how you made them feel beautiful.

♥ Connect with a new team member in the community each day… that’s 26 new TIU girlfriends :)

♥ 4 weeks doesn’t seem like much… but you can achieve a lot between now until then! ” ~ToneItUp

I was totally inspired by this!  I really like that they take a whole body/mind approach – not just working out and eating clean, but connecting with other people, too.  I feel like supporting each other is so important.

So when I got the weekly schedule in my inbox on Sunday, I new I was going to start on Monday after work.  I love that the schedule has video links, pdf downloads, and a Pinterest-ready photo of each workout, as well.  I also REALLY love that the whole thing is themed – each of the workouts are named with Valentine’s Day in mind.  So cute!

  • Monday: My mom and I had taken a quick-paced mid-morning walk as my “cupid cardio” and then I came home and did the #LoveYourAbs workout 3 times, which took me about 30 minutes.
  • Tuesday: I went to the gym and did the run/walk intervals on the treadmill for cardio and I did #LoveYourBodywithKettlebells for my toning.  This workout was killer, and even though it was only 19 minutes (I only did one set) I’m still feeling it!
  • Wednesday: rest day. I was starting to feel sick, and since I’d worked all day, I decided to take a break today.
  • Thursday: Despite having a pretty bad cold, woke up and did 18 minutes on the stationary bike followed by 1 round of #LoveYourArms&Abs (15 minutes).  If I wasn’t feeling sick, I definitely would’ve done the recommended 2 rounds.
  • Friday: I took another sick day, but still woke up and did 18 minutes on the recumbent bike, followed by 3 rounds of #LoveYourBooty, and I know I’ll be feeling that workout for a few days.
  • Saturday: I’m going to rest on the cardio, but I’ll complete the week’s plan by doing two sets of #LoveYourWholeBody2 (35 minutes).

I have really liked these workouts because they don’t require a lot of equipment.  I have everything I need – a kettlebell, some hand weights, and a yoga mat.  It doesn’t get simpler than that.  I can feel the workouts working by how sore my muscles are each day, but the thing I’m enjoying about these workouts is that I can do them.  Some of the moves (like the side plank) are out of reach for me, but I can find easy ways to modify them.  I feel so good when I’m finished with each round of toning, and I really like that none of the workouts take that much time.  I can easily fit in 30 minutes a day.  I like checking in on FB and Twitter, and getting support from the @ToneItUp girls every time I use the #TIU hashtag.

Another fun thing about these workouts is that Sofi really gets into them.  She thinks it’s playtime every time I hit the mat to do crunches, booty bridges, etc.  It’s impossible not to start laughing every time she licks my face when I’m trying to do leg lifts or is right underneath me as I’m doing kettlebell swings.  So, we’ve made a deal – she get get a few kisses and licks in and then she has to let me get my toning in, and afterward we’ll fit in a play session on the ground.  How can I resist – how cute is this?

2014-01-24 12.14.22A huge thank you to Karena and Katrina for making such a fun, easy-to-follow, FREE program.  I know I can keep this up!  I can’t wait to see how my body changes in the next four weeks!!

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clipart_sickI’ve been home sick with a really bad cold yesterday and today.  This particular bug has been making the rounds through my school, and I’m actually surprised that I evaded it for as long as I did.  The usual winter cold – bad sore throat, stuffy head, runny nose, and a bit of trouble breathing.

In the past I would’ve found this to be the perfect excuse to skip my workouts and just sit on the couch all day and watch TV or read.  Well not this time.  This time I was determined to fit some form of workouts in anyway.  I’ve heard that if it’s above the chest, you can still workout, but if it’s below the chest (meaning a stomach virus, etc), you should take it easy.  So I decided to see what I was capable of.

Yesterday I started out on the stationary bike, figuring that it would be a lot less taxing that trying the elliptical.  I did it while watching The Bachelor (this season my deal with myself is that the only way I watch the show is while I’m working out), and made it through the first individual date, or 18 minutes. Not too shabby.  I followed it up with Tone It Up‘s Love Your Arms & Abs workout (15 min).  Later in the afternoon I took Sofi on a short walk (15 min) around the neighborhood, just to get some fresh air.

Today I again watched Juan Pablo entertain the girls on a group soccer date while I rode the stationary bike (18 minutes).  Then my mom came over to try Tone It Up’s Love Your Booty routine (30 minutes) with me.  I’m also planning on taking Sofi for another short walk later this afternoon (about 15 min).

I can’t tell you how proud of myself I am!  Sure, the cardio workouts weren’t that intense, but with this cold, I definitely felt like I was pushing myself.  And the toning exercises are challenging, cold or not.  Either way, I didn’t let being sick become an excuse to skip my workout as I surely would have in the past.  I mean, c’mon – I’m sick and feeling lousy – what better excuse not to workout?  But that’s not who I am anymore.

These days I actually miss my workouts when I don’t do them.  I used to hear people say that when I was heavier and think they were full of it, but I can honestly tell you now that it’s true for me.  How times have changed! I feel like a completely different person than I did when I weighed 315 pounds, so it was almost like I NEEDED to workout when I had this cold, just to show myself how much I have truly transformed.  Mind and body.

It’s little moments like this that add up to show me the new person I’m becoming.  Now excuse me while I go make another cup of David’s Tea.

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