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Archive for the ‘Bodybugg’ Category

I was inspired by Scale Warfare’s 7n7 that she posted about today, and because once school starts back up for me, life gets even more hectic.  It becomes harder to make/find the time and the desire to stay on track with my weight loss goals.  I can already sort of feel myself slipping into bad habits because I’m feeling exhausted and a bit stressed out.  The thing is, I think it’s all in how I look at it.  Back-To-School also signals a change of the season (even if it’s still summer when we go back), and that means a fresh start, a clean slate, and a chance to keep new goals.  So what better time to write some up so that you can help me stay accountable?

Bella’s Back-To-School Goals

  1. Track every bite in LoseIt, whether I’m proud of the choice I made or not.  Being honest with myself and seeing the true picture of how many calories I’m taking in is the only way I can modify the rest of the day to make sure I meet my caloric goals.
  2. Stay between 1200-1400 calories each day.  I’d love to be at 1200 every single day, but that’s not realistic sometimes.  I figure that if I can balance the higher-calorie days with increased exercise, I’ll be ok.
  3. Bring a healthy breakfast and lunch with me each day (see Tuesday morning’s post for more on my plan for this).
  4. Drink 64 oz of water, minimum.
  5. Go for a caloric deficit of at least 1000 each day.  Realistically, if I’m getting in a good workout, the caloric deficit will be around 1500.
  6. Pack my workout clothes the night before and bring them with me, so I can go right after school, no excuses.*
  7. Workout at least 3 days (M-F) and 1 day of the weekend.*
  8. Wear the BodyBugg all day at least 1 day this week, so I can get an idea of how many calories I burn at school.  I should be wearing it every day, but my vanity gets in the way.  If it’s going to show with my outfit, I’m not going to wear it.  I usually dress up the first few weeks of school and having a BodyBugg hanging off my upper arm when I’m wearing a dress just isn’t the look I’m going for.  Oh how I wish that they made a BodyBugg that you only needed to wear on your wrist.  Once winter weather gets here, wearing the BodyBugg won’t be an issue, because sweaters and long-sleeved tops will cover it.
  9. Wear the BodyBugg for every non-pool workout to get an accurate caloric burn reading.
  10. Enter calories burned in various exercises/workouts into LoseIt each day.
  11. Cook healthy dinners 6 nights a week.  I usually go over my parents’ house on Sundays, and my mom always makes well-balanced meals, so the key there will be portion-control.
  12. Blog often because the more I’m blogging the more on-track I feel.
  13. Understand that when I make excuses for any of the above items, I’m only shortchanging myself.  Do these things FOR ME because they’ll help me get to my goals quicker.

Our first 6-week grading period is up on October 8th, so I’ll check back in then to see how I’ve done on these goals.

*I’ve already packed my swimsuit, towel, and magazines for tomorrow.  We’re finally getting some summer weather (90+ degrees), so a poolside workout sounds amazing to me.

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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket Happy Tuesday, everyone!

It feels so good to be back in the mix with everyone, following a meal and exercise plan.  Don’t get me wrong, I really think I needed the 2-month break that I took, and I’m happy to report that I pretty much maintained my weight throughout that time.  I didn’t go too far overboard with my eating, and it was a nice respite to stop weighing, measuring, and counting during the summer.  But, it feels so right to be back at it now.

As I mentioned in my last blog post, I am now on a 1200 calorie a day meal plan set up by the nutritionist at Kasier.  The goal is to lose the required 5-10% of my total body weight so that I can have the Lap Band surgery.  I’ll find out the exact amount I need to lose on Sept. 2nd, but I wanted to get started right away.

Yesterday I began by logging my breakfast into the BodyBugg (BB) program, but found it very clunky.  Many of the foods (like almond milk) that I eat weren’t in the database, and the process of adding foods is sort of a pain.  I am still going to use the BodyBugg to help me track the number of calories I burn, so it will be useful for that.  I decided to use the Lose It app that I downloaded a long time ago on my iPhone, and I am loving it.  LOVING!  It has had every single food that I’ve eaten, even random things like Greek yogurt from Trader Joe’s.  It also breaks down my nutrionals for me, letting me know the percentages of protein, carbs, and fats that I’ve eaten, which is something the WW eTools didn’t do.  It’s interesting to see how it all works out.  I also really like that it is on the iPhone (convenient), but also has a website that I can go to, if I’m at a computer.  I love that I  can log exercise in Lose It as well, and it will even tweet my exercise, so those of you who follow me on Twitter will be able to see how I’m doing in that regard.

Here’s a screen shot of yesterday’s totals:

(You can click on it to really see the info).

Sticking to a caloric goal is somewhat harder than sticking to Points, mostly because Points give you a lot more lee-way.  Yesterday I did fairly well, although I was over by 272 calories.  I went to see Natalie Merchant in concert (which was amazing, btw) and didn’t eat dinner before, because I thought there would be something decent to eat at the venue.  When I saw that they were selling $8 hotdogs, I knew I had made a mistake.  I ended up getting a cheese and fruit plate and shared it with my friends; it wasn’t the best choice in the world, but given the offerings, it was decent.  Plus those two glasses of wine added up.  But I’m not going to get too upset about it, because it was my first day and the concert was a special thing, so I’m happy with what I did, overall.

Tomorrow is going to be my official weigh-in and, I am really looking forward to losing these 20 or so lbs.  I can’t wait to get back on the scale and see progress every week.  Scale Warfare said that when she returns from her honeymoon she’s going to join me in my 20 lbs. journey, which will be fun.  Does anyone else want to?  Maybe I can make some kind of challenge out of it. Let me know if you guys have any thoughts on that.

A couple of pictures of the concert last night.  I was at the best venue for seeing artists, called Mt. Winery.  It’s in the Saratoga foothills, and I love the scenic views as well as the intimate setting.  There’s not a bad seat in the house, even in the general admission “bleachers,” where we were sitting.

I’m going there again next Tuesday to see Cyndi Lauper in concert, and I cannot wait!  Although now I’ll know to bring a picnic with us because they have great picnic tables in the winery.  And I’ll also bring a sweater, because when the fog rolls in at night, it’s cold!  Natalie Merchant commented last night that it felt more like Pennsylvania in October than California in August.  While lots of the country is sweltering right now, we’re experiencing much cooler than normal temps.

One thing I didn’t really do yesterday was exercise.  It was an absolutely hectic day because I went in to school to update our website and start getting my classroom in order, had a dentist appointment, picked Lulu up from doggie daycare, and then headed to the concert.  No time!  Today will be a better day.  I was supposed to go to Half Moon Bay to meet Kat for a beach walk, but unfortunately she’s feeling ill, so we had to reschedule.  Which means that I am free to go to the Rose Garden at 1pm and possibly (hopefully!) run into Flirt #1.  I’m also thinking we may just head to the dog park, too, so that Lulu can really run around and I could possibly run into Flirt #2.  Wow, that makes it sound like I’m totally using Miss Lulu to help my own love life, but that’s really not it.  She needs the exercise, and I do like the more social aspect of taking her out for long walks and to the dog park. The fact that there might be some fun flirting at the same time is merely a nice side benefit.

On the homefront, I finally heard back from my old landlord about the duplex that I am hoping to move into, and he said that he’ll call me tomorrow to set up a time so that I can go by and see it.  He also told me what the current tenant pays in rent, and it’s a lot less than I thought, which is fabulous.  He said that he’s going to check out the going rental market rate and then set my rent based on that, but if it’s close to what she was paying, it’s definitely do-able.  Please keep some good thoughts, crossed fingers, or prayers in mind for me that it works out, because things next door to me are still really bad.  More violent fighting, and just a general feeling of unease abounds.

So that’s about it, folks.  It’s a busy, busy time for me, but it’s exciting too.  I’m looking forward to seeing my progress with this 1200 cals/day diet & exercise.  See you back tomorrow with my weigh in.

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So after months of not knowing exactly where my BodyBugg(BB) was, I finally found it about a month ago.  Then last night I told myself I was going to start wearing it to get into the habit of recording my calories burned and steps taken.  I plugged it in last night to make sure it was all charged up and ready to go this morning.  I was prepared and ready.

Or so I thought.

When I tried to sync it with my watch/display thingy (yes, that’s the technical name) it said that the sensor wasn’t “set up.”  Which is when I realized I need to subscribe to the service in order to use the upload interface.  So I got out the credit card, paid for the 1- year service and thought I was ready to roll.

Not so fast.

When I tried to sync the device in Firefox 5, it gives a javascript null void error.  When I opened Safari 4, it seemed like it was going to work, but it crashed the browser every single time.  EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.

I tried over and over again, but finally gave up after hours.  Ugh.

Since I have a Mac, I can’t use Internet Explorer (nor do I want to), and apparently my version of OS X isn’t compatible with Google’s Chrome.  Double ugh.

So, I’m turning to you, readers.  Can anyone offer any advice?

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Let’s start with the bad news…

Housing

Today (it’s almost 1am, so technically this is yesterday) I went to look at the duplex that was available and I was so disappointed in what I saw.  Yes, the layout was exactly the same as the one I had lived in years ago, but it was absolutely disgusting inside.  Apparently the previous tenants had been evicted, and it showed.  The carpet and floors were filthy, and the property manager said they “might need to be replaced.”  Uh, if you want to rent it to me, they NEED to be replaced.  Oh, and while you’re at it, why not update those ugly cabinets that look as if they haven’t been painted in years?  The entire place just looked so run down and awful, and the yard was completely overgrown with weeds.  So not worth the monthly rental fee.

The property manager was so unprofessional, and not only did she show up 10 minutes late for our appointment, but she just seemed like a total airhead.  When I looked the company up on Yelp, they had some really poor reviews from current tenants.  Not a good sign.  Which means that all 10 of the duplexes that are on that street are off the table, because the same man owns all of them, and the same property managers run them.  If she couldn’t even show up on time to show me the place, I can only imagine how unresponsive they are when things need to be repaired.

So it’s back to the drawing board.  I’m not giving up, but I may not move out as soon as I thought (or had hoped).  My quick searches on Craigslist hasn’t shown anything I’m interested in so far.  I definitely want to get a duplex or a little house.  Once you “graduate” from apartment living, you definitely don’t want to go back.  I have decided to sign a month-to-month lease at my current location so that I have the freedom to leave whenever I want to.  This buys me the time to find some place that I feel comfortable with.  Because as crazy as the neighbors on both sides of me are (and for as poor as the neighborhood is), my place itself is nice and I only want to move up.  I definitely don’t want to settle.

And now the good…

Lulu

I’m happy to report that Lulu is completely potty trained already!  It’s only been a month, so I think that shows exactly how smart she is.  She’s still a great puppy who adds so much to my life, but she has started moving into that “adolescent” stage of puppyhood.  She’s started barking quite a bit, and while I know that’s normal, I don’t like it when she barks at ME.  Most of the time she barks becasue she wants to play, which is fine, but the last two days she’s started barking whenever I’m not paying her enough attention – when I’m eating a meal (new weight loss tool?? ;), when I’m cleaning up, or when I’m watching t.v or on the computer.  I’m trying different techniques to curb her barking at me, including giving her timeouts in her crate.  I’m going to inquire at the puppy training to see if they have any other suggestions.

Speaking of the training, she’s doing really well with “sit” and “lay down.”  I’m looking forward to going this evening (Wednesday evening) and seeing what new tricks we learn.  The main thing I’m looking forward to learning with her is recall/name recognition and loose leash walking.

Which leads me to the fact that I think I need to start taking Lulu on longer walks to tire her out a bit more.  Right now we go around the block 5-6 times a day and usually 1 good (1/2 mile) walk, but I think now that she’s gotten older and seems to be able to control her bladder better, I can cut down the walks to 2-3 longer ones a day.  My neighborhood isn’t the best to walk in, so I think I’m going to start driving her to the better streets that are a 5-minute car ride away.  I know that seems silly, but I’d much rather do that than walk on the streets around here where who knows what she’ll find.  There’s a ton of garbage on the sidewalks near my house (I saw a Hennessey bottle strewn on the sidewalk just this morning), so I’m forced to be ridiculously vigilant in making sure she’s not getting into things.  Since the nicely maintained streets aren’t very far away, it makes sense to just drive her to them.  Of course I’ll still take her outside for the quick potty breaks a few times a day, but I think doing these new routes will be good for both of us.  (It might also help with barking).

New Stuff

I just bought Just Dance for the Wii, and I can’t wait to try it this morning (look for a review once I have).  I’ve heard great things about it from you guys and from the reviews on Amazon, so I think it will be a fun thing to add to my exercise routine.  I pre-ordered the Just Dance 2, as well, and I have a feeling I’ll like that one, too.  It has all new songs to groove to, so it will help keep things interesting.

Despite the reported reception/antenna problems with the iPhone 4, I’m going to order one today.  I have a iPhone 3G, which is 2 models behind, and I’m ready to upgrade.  I can’t wait for the double viewer camera, because it will make taking self-portraits so much easier.  I can’t tell you the number of times my sister (or friends) and I have wanted to snap a picture of ourselves, only to take a photo of our chins, or our foreheads, etc.  The other really cool feature is the video chatting Facetime that you can do with other iPhone 4 users.  There are lots of other cool things about the new iPhone.  Plus, I told my sister that I’d give her my old phone, and since she’s been going through some difficult and stressful personal (relationship) issues, I want to do whatever I can to make her life better.  She never gets anything for herself because money is tight and whatever extra she has goes to my nieces, so I’m more than happy to give her the old iPhone so that she can have a nicer phone.

Goals For the Week

I wanted to set a few exercise/activity goals for myself this week (Wed-Fri), and I’ll check in on Saturday to see how well I did:

  1. Do the Just Dance each morning
  2. Take Lulu on 2 long walks a day
  3. Wear my Body Bugg each day and log my calories burned online
  4. Go swimming 1 day
  5. Go to the gym 1 day
  6. Take a bike ride 1 day
  7. Make an appointment to meet with a new personal trainer

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If you’re a long-time reader, you already know most of the info contained within this video, but you might be interested in watching it because Lulu makes a cameo appearance.  🙂

BTW – The quality isn’t what I expected it to be, but I think that’s because I had to edit it in iMovie and then compress the file, so it didn’t come out as clearly as it otherwise would have. At least I hope that’s what it is, otherwise, I spent a lot of money for nothing.  (Although it is nice to have a video camera).

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You know how I said I was going to do the RLR training yesterday?  Ya, well that didn’t happen.  After an appointment in the afternoon, a stop at Whole Foods, and then fighting traffic on the way home, I was starving and tired.  So I scrapped that plan.  But, don’t despair.

I went today instead.  And because it was Saturday, and it wasn’t raining (we’re expecting a huge storm here on Sunday and Monday), I decided to take my C25K training outside.  I’ve been going to the gym, mostly because I was too embarrassed to go outside and have “unsuspecting witnesses.”  But I thought a change of scenery would be good for me.  Plus, when I eventually run the 5K I’m going to be outside, so I thought it might be nice to try something different today.

Today is the first day of my RLR Week 3 training, which means I did this:

I know that running on the sidewalk is a lot harder on the joints than running on a treadmill, and the path I was taking had a choice of either pavement or grass:

Which one should I choose?

I chose grass at first, because I thought it would be softer, and it was, but I also found that it was really difficult to get my footing.  I moved to pavement, but that was really hard, and it felt so much more difficult to run.

I  didn’t think adding 30 seconds to the jog would be that big a deal, but let me tell you, it is!  Right from the first interval, I was huffing and puffing and felt like I wouldn’t be able to make it all the way through the 90 seconds.  I did my best to keep going, but at interval 3 I decided that after a week off, I should really go back to the previous interval (60 seconds jogging, 90 seconds walking), and so I did that for the remainder of the 20 minutes.

A nice thing about doing these intervals without the treadmill is that I wasn’t concerned with how fast I was going.  I wasn’t wondering if I should be going faster than 3.7 on my jog or 3.0 on the walk – I just moved as fast as I could, while still feeling fairly “comfortable.” I pushed myself and let myself get really out of breath, and I didn’t have that nagging feeling about how slow I was going. All I cared about was finishing. I think I did well because the BodyBugg showed that I burned 424 calories:

This is 34 more calories than I usually burn when I do the C25K, and I think it was because of those longer jogging intervals in the beginning of the training today. (Today’s workout earned me 4 APs on WW, too).

Another good thing about taking the C25K training outside was that I had a great view.  Instead of watching the treadmill or looking at a wall, I was able to see this: (I took these on the warm-up/cool down portions of my training)

I’m really proud of myself for getting back onto the RLR training schedule, even though I didn’t do the training regimen I was supposed to do today.  I’d rather go back one step than risk injury.  I’ve also decided that even though the views today were beautiful, and it was nice being outside and feeling the wind on my face, I’m just not ready to jog on the pavement or the grass yet.  I may eventually go to the track at the high school near my house, because it’s one of those new “rubberized/springy” tracks, so it will probably be a bit better on the joints.  But for the remainder of this week’s training, I’m going to stick with the treadmill.

The RLR training plan for the rest of this week is:

Monday, 1/18 – at the gym before my training session with Jimmy.
Wednesday, 1/20 – at 5:45am at the gym before work.

Look for my recap post on Friday.

BTW – Today I used the stretching tips that Scale Warfare suggested, and I have to say, the cramping in my calves was much less.  I’m definitely going to keep doing those stretches!

(P.S. – as far as those “unsuspecting witnesses,” I was so caught up in just finishing the training that I didn’t even worry about them once.  🙂  I am glad that my workout pants have lots of spandex, though, because it does hold in the jiggle a bit better than normal sweats).

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Whew!  I made it!

I am very proud to say that I just got back from the gym where I completed Day 1 of Week 1 of the C25K program.  It wasn’t easy, and there were times that I thought I’d made a huge mistake to agree to do this with Scale Warfare, but I completed it without stopping. I have been very anxious for a few weeks about how this would go, but now I can say that I was worried for nothing.  I’m going to be able to do this. Maybe more slowly than I first thought, but I will do it.

I had two choices of where to get on the treadmill.  In front of mirrors so that I could watch myself the entire time or in front of the men’s bathroom.  I choose the men’s bathroom, because even though there would be quite a few people coming by, at least I wouldn’t get discouraged by seeing all of my flub jiggling around.

Since I have bad knees (inherited from my father, and my excess weight definitely doesn’t help) and am prone to getting leg cramps if I walk too fast without a proper warm up, I made sure to warm up for a full 5 minutes.  Next time I may even do a 10-minute warm up, because my calves definitely cramped up within 5 minutes of starting the actual interval program.

I hit the app on the iPhone, and it started the counter going.  I love that it lets me listen to my own music while it keeps track of when I’m supposed to go from jogging to walking. I also really like that it builds in the 5-minute warm up and 5-minute cool down within the program.

Then the real c25K program started.  I haven’t gone on a treadmill in about 2 months, and although I normally walk at a 3.3 or so, today I was only able to go 3.0 for the walking portion.   I wasn’t sure how fast to go with the jogging, but I moved the treadmill up to a 3.7, and it seemed to be a good jogging pace for me right now. I got out of breath when I was jogging, but since it only lasted for 60 seconds, I was able to push myself until the end of the minute.  The interesting thing was that I felt the leg cramping and the pain more when I was walking than I did when I was jogging.

Today’s intervals were 60 seconds jogging, 90 seconds walking, repeat the intervals for 20 minutes.  So I figure that I walked 13 minutes and jogged 7 minutes.  Plus 10 minutes warm-up & cool down.  So 30 minutes total altogether.  Not too shabby.

About 15 minutes into the interval program I felt like I wanted to quit.  My legs were both really cramping up and I was in pain.  But instead of giving up, I walked through one of the jogging intervals, just so that I could recover a bit.  And it seemed to work!  After that I didn’t have much time left and just kept telling myself to keep going.  And I made it!

My feet did get numb as soon as I started the cool down, but I just kept on walking, and before I knew it I was finished.  As soon as I stopped on the treadmill, my numbness stopped, which is a huge improvement from the trouble I was having about 8 months ago.  Progress!

My Bodybugg says that I burned 390 calories, and WW says that I earned 4 Activity Points (APs).  I’m actually surprised that I didn’t earn more APs, since I can earn 2 with 30 minutes on the Wii Fitplus, and this felt like a lot more effort than that. But whatever, this isn’t about how many APs I’m earning, it’s about reaching  the goal I’ve set for myself – being able to run an entire 5K without stopping!

So, to recap, I am really proud of myself for keeping going through the pain/hard part.  I may not be going very fast, but at least I’m doing it!

Be sure to check out Scale Warfare’s RLR Day 1, too.

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The reason I can’t wait until 2:25 is that that is the time when the final bell rings at school, releasing the students and teachers from all duties, obligations, and responsibilities for two weeks!!  Otherwise known as Winter Break aka Christmas Vacation (for the non-PC among us). 

I don’t have many plans for the two weeks off, and that’s just the way I like it.  I do have quite a few things going on this weekend that I’m looking forward to:

Friday – dinner at Cheesecake Factory (I’m so glad they have the nutrition info available on their menu now, it makes making good choices so much easier) and then seeing New Moon (we thought we’d let the teenage mania die down a bit before we started drooling over Edward and Jacob) with my good friend DH, whom I’ve known since high school.  Really looking forward to it.

The view from the Carnelian Room, SF

Saturday – AM errands (including a workout at home), but then an amazing dinner planned in SF at the Carnelian Room with Favorite Cousin and her dining out group. (This group of women is all over 40 years old, and most of them have never been married. They’re so much fun! They stay up on pop culture better than I do, and I teach teens! They all have a great attitude, and seem just fine with the fact that they may never get married. It’s quite liberating being around them, actually). The very cool thing about this dinner, besides the fact that it’s at an incredibly posh and chi chi restaurant is that the Carnealian Room is closing in early January, so this will be one of the last opportunities to go to this culinary landmark.  I’ve never been before, and I’m even more excited for this chance to spend a great night dining with wonderful women who always inspire me.  I have no idea what I’m going to order, but the menu does look like it has plenty of delicious, fairly healthy options.  What would you order?

Another fun part of Saturday will be the fact that I’m staying over Favorite Cousin’s house, because I know we’ll be out late, have plenty of wine and cocktails over dinner, and I’d rather not drive an hour home under those conditions.  Plus, it’s fun to hang out at her house with her.  Favorite Cousin is someone I’ve always looked up to because she is so hip, so fun, and so down to earth.  She has some very prestigious clients (she’s a personal assistant aka life manager) and is always “in the know” about the latest and the  greatest events in the city. 

Sunday –   Sunday afternoon my parents, sister, and her family are getting together to do our pre-Christmas celebration.  LC and her husband stay home on Christmas Eve to help Santa with the kids’ gifts and this year they’re going to spend Christmas Day with her husband’s family.  So, this will be a nice early holiday fête.  Of course there’s going to be food, but since my mom is a planner like me, I already know what’s on the menu: I”m bringing a cheese ball/log that I’m going to “healthify” as an appetizer; for dinner we’re having lasagna, Honey Baked ham, sauteed zucchini, and salad; and for dessert, LC’s making a Kalua cake.  So the plan is to keep my portions small and taste a bit of everything, but eat more of the veggies and protein.  I still have to wrap all the presents and buy one or two small gifts before Sunday.  I’d better get cracking!

As for the rest of my vacation?  I have 3 sets of essays to read, but those should only take about 2-3 hours or so, total, so I’m going to get those out of the way on Monday.  Then I plan to spend some time with friends a few evenings, including New Year’s Eve with Nicey and her hubby.

Overall, I’m looking forward to getting back to a bit of Bella’s Boot Camp that I had going on this summer.  I really need to get my butt back in gear now that I’m fully recovered from bronchitis.  So it’ll be many days in the gym for me, which I’m looking forward to.  I can’t wait to strap on my BodyBugg, attend a fitness class or four, and just burn some calories!!!

I have been looking forward to this vacation since school started, and I can hardly believe that when that bell rings at 2:25, it’ll be here!!!!

WhooooHOOOOOOOO!

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The weeks are flying by and we’re smack-dab in the middle of October already.  I can’t believe it!  It seems like summer was only a week ago.  Today’s weather tells me otherwise, though – the rains have started and it’s windy and pouring outside.  I love this type of weather, although it take a bit of extra motivation to go outside and get to the gym.  (I don’t know how those of you who live where it snows do it!).

This is going to be a bit of a mish-mosh post.  I have a couple of different topics to cover, so here goes…

On Friday I received my much-awaited Biggest Loser game for the Wii.  I was too wiped out on Friday to try it out, but it’s one of the first things I did on Saturday.

IMG_2003

After setting up the user profile (I chose Ali as my BL contestant), this was one of the first screens I came to.  It allows you to start the fitness program they’ve designed for you, based on your goals.  My goal was to “lose a lot of weight,” but they have different settings like toning up, losing a small amount of weight, etc.  I chose to do the fitness program, and I chose Jillian as my trainer (for now) as well as the beginner setting.  Saturday was upper body day, and the workout was fairly intense – 3 sets of boxing moves (cardio), 3 sets of plank and push-ups (on the knees, rather than “real” push-ups), and 3 sets of something else that I’m forgetting (old age is bad, I’m telling ya).  I really liked that each exercise went straight into the next one, with only 30 seconds in between.  It allowed me to get my heart rate up and according to my BodyBugg, it helped me burn 262 calories in about 30 minutes.

After the main workout, I decided to check out some of the other offerings.

IMG_2002 It weighed me, of course.  This was actually done first, and my next weigh-in (which I’m assuming will be in one week, next Saturday, should prove interesting).

IMG_2006 In the Health & Lifestyle section, they have 1000s of recipes to choose from.  I am always looking for interesting breakfast options, and saw this recipe for lemon mini muffins. While it’s cool that they offer this, I wish there was some way to email yourself the recipe, because copying the info down from the t.v. screen seems sort of clunky.  Still, I do think it’s nice that they have this as part of the game.  It goes with the idea that weight loss really is a lifestyle change, and not just about diet or just about exercise, but as a combination of the two.

IMG_2007 One “fun” aspect of this “just do it” game is the challenge section.  You can do the different challenges (just like the BL contestants).  I did one where I had to get my Mii (Ali) across a tightrope.  The Mii was on top of the tightrope, clutching it with her arms in front of her and her legs behind her (kind of on all-fours, but suspended from the air).  I was wondering what sort of movement they’d have me to do get her across, and then a little pop-up window came on the screen with Jillian showing that I should run in place, raising my knees and pumping my arms.  The faster I moved, the faster my Mii made it across the tightrope.  It was a fun way to get me to run in place for two minutes.  The next part of the challenge was to help my Mii release some balloons.  She was supposed to nail a board into a basket (or something like that), and to mimic this, they had me doing overhead ax chops, which actually got my heart rate up.  Both parts of the challenge were really fun.

Overall, I think I’m going to like this game a lot, and although it’s not “fun” like the Wii Fit Plus, it does get the job done.  Just like on the show, the trainers on the game are really down to business.  Your motivation comes from them telling you you’re doing well or that you need to step it up.  I think this would be a great compliment to anyone’s normal workout, especially if they didn’t have the money (or the time) to hire a personal trainer, because many of the moves are similar to ones that I’m doing with Jimmy in the gym.

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I went to two different WW meetings over the weekend (go me!), and while both of them were OK, neither of them really knocked my socks off.  The leaders were both sweet, and the groups were fine, but nothing that made me say to myself, “this is the meeting you belong at.” Ever since I decided to do personal training 3 times a week and I realized I’d have to change my Thursday meeting, I’ve been really debating about whether or not I even need to go to a meeting at all anymore.

Seeing Jimmy that often provides me a ton of motivation and keeps me very accountable.  He always asks me how my food is going, and I am always honest with him, even when he gives me a hard time about eating one of my mom’s enchiladas.  (He was so upset with me for eating this, even when I told him she made it in a much lower calorie way, he just kept saying, “that’s not how you get to goal, Bella!” And boy, did he take it out on me with my workout that night!).  I’m always going to be honest with him, because it seems silly not to.  After all, he’s helping me with my goal, but if he wants it more than I do, it won’t work.  So there’s really no point in not being honest.  Plus, I know that my food can’t be perfect all the time, and as long as I factor the points (calories) in, I’ll stay on target.

So, I’ve decided to end my WW Monthly Pass and start doing WW Online instead.  It will save me $20/month, and I’ll still have access to all the tools I use everyday.  Plus, I feel that between this blog, personal training with Jimmy, and the support I get from my friends, family, and you bloggers, I’ll be just fine.

Since I can now weigh myself any day I’d like, I’m going to begin with Weigh-In Wednesdays.  It feels like the perfect day – middle of the week, not near the weekend, and after a night off from personal training.  When I was weighing myself everyday (just to see trends), I noticed that my weight went up a bit each morning after I had had a personal training session the night before.  I’m not sure if this is extra water weight, or what.  Since I don’t go to the gym on Tuesdays, Wednesday morning is the perfect weigh-in day.

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With my decision about not attending WW meetings, it means that now I have to look for motivation and accountability within myself.  I don’t think this will be hard to do, because once I have a goal, I’m like a dog with a bone.  Although, once in a while it’s difficult to get myself “amped up” to keep up the pace I’ve set for myself.  And that’s when I look to others (like you) to support me.

How do you stay motivated?

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I’ve finished the first week of school, and I have some mixed feelings about it.  School itself is great – the classes and students are awesome, for the most part, and I’m looking forward to getting to know them so much better as the year continues.  I’m excited about trying some new lessons this year and I definitely feel rejuvenated after taking the summer off for the first time.  This is the beginning of my 10th year of teaching, and I really feel like it’s going to be one of the best yet.

As far as weight loss, exercise, and organization, the week was a mixed bag.  I started off strong – made my lunch the night before, pre-programmed the coffeemaker to go off at 5:30am, figured out what I was going to wear to school, etc.  I woke up on time (5:20am), and was ready to go.  I made it through the school day, and still had plenty of energy for my evening training session on Monday.  Came home, ate a nutritious dinner, and went to bed at a decent time so that I could do it all over again the next day.  That was Monday – Wednesday afternoon.

Jimmy had to cancel our Wednesday evening training, and I didn’t go into the gym to workout on my own, as I should have.  Instead I stayed home, made dinner, and watched T.V.  I felt sort of lazy doing it, but told myself that it was ok, because I had been going fairly strong for the last 3 days.  Then something happened on Thursday morning when I got on the scale and saw that I had gained 2 pounds week’s weigh-in on the home scale.  Probably because the dinner I had on Wednesday night was sort of carb-heavy (a WW mac ‘n cheese recipe that was really tasty, but sort of heavy), and seeing that on the scale sort of put me into a tailspin.  Still, on  Thursday I had a great lunch, went through my workday, and even came home with the intention of going to my WW meeting on Thursday evening.  That is, until I sat down on the couch to “rest” and woke up at 7pm (after the WW meeting had already ended).  I guess it all just sort of caught up with me.  I think the discouragement from seeing a gain on the scale really let the air out of my sails.  I wasn’t really that surprised with the gain, because it was TOM, my workouts had slowed, I didn’t wear the BodyBugg a few times during the week because it would’ve shown with the outfit I was wearing (dumb vanity, I know), and I was sort of throwing together dinners that could have been more well-balanced.  (That was pure laziness on my part).

Friday got a bit worse – I brought donuts for the kids and I had one donut hole (not the end of the world, by any means), but it was a HOT day (over 100 degrees) and I was just feeling blah.  I told myself I was going to the pool to cool off and get some exercise, but I just couldn’t get motivated enough to get in the swimsuit, drive to the pool, and actually enjoy it.  So instead I spend the evening at home, watching T.V. in the A/C.

This is the sort of downward spiral that led me to gain back the weight that I lost doing the starvation diet 500-calorie a day shake meal replacements.  (I know that my metabolism was completely thrown off by that kind of ridiculous weight loss plan, and that I would’ve gained some of the weight back anyway, but this kind of behavior is also what led to my gain).  I just don’t want to go down that road again.  I can’t afford to.  I’ve started some really good habits over the summer with getting active and feeling more fit and energetic.  I’ve lost 5 inches in one month with personal training.  My mindset was so positive, and I don’t want to throw that all out the window now that my schedule is more hectic and I’m tired.  I won’t.

So in a way I’m glad I had a few off days.  It was the wake-up call I needed to get myself right back on track before things get out of control.  Today is Saturday and since I don’t have any plans to be anywhere, I’m going to spend the day cleaning the house and getting things organized for the workweek ahead.  I’m going to do many loads of laundry, as the hamper is overflowing, and I want to try to set out the week’s worth of outfits so that will be one less thing to take care of at night. After everything is organized and cleaned up, I’ll either go for a bike ride (something I haven’t done in a LONG time) or I’ll go to the pool to cool off with a swim.  Sunday I’m going to go to the farmers market and the grocery store to stock the fridge and pantry with food.  I’m going to  make a few “big pot” dinners that I can freeze or package into containers so that I won’t have to think about what I’m going to make when I get home from working out at 7:30 or 8pm at night and I’m ravenous.  Again, I’d like to hit the pool or go on a bike ride on Sunday, too.

One thing that I’m proud of is the fact that I’m immediately recovering from an off week.  I’m not letting that “hangover” linger and take me down with it.  I’m making a plan, being active, and getting things done right away.  As I’ve said before, I truly believe it’s the way that we handle the setbacks that truly show the type of character we possess.  I know I’m stronger than my actions for the latter part of this week display.  I know I can handle a busy schedule and still lead an active and healthy life.  Now I just have to do it!

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