Monday, August 26, 2013

Halfway to Oz

Well, I’m officially past my halfway point in my Game Changer Challenge.  I'm totally stoked, too, but for reasons I never would have imagined.  Originally, I would have thought I would be excited for it to end because of what I finally get to eat again.  However, I’m actually excited for it to end because I finally get to see the end results!  We have five weeks completed, and I have lost over 10.5 pounds and (as of a week ago) over 7.5”.
As far as my goals go, I’m pretty much killin’ it!
1. Eat the meal plan provided by Stephanie – I have barely cheated (outside of my 1 cheat meal each week).  For instance, last week at Bunco, I had 2 small chocolate chip cookies.  Barely a cheat, considering that’s all I had all week.  J
2. Go to boot camp 5 days a week, plus perform 2-3 at-home workouts a week – Not a problem.  I’ve actually made it to boot camp for 5 days a week for the last 11 weeks.  I’m pretty proud of that!
3. Walk 10,000 steps each day (which I think is approximately 4 miles) – I get this most days.  There are just some days that it doesn’t happen.  However, it’s not uncommon to find me walking circles in the living room or our bedroom before bedtime.  Todd loves it.
4. Drink 100 ounces of water each day – Easy, breezy!  I just make sure to keep track of the number of water bottles I’ve had in a day to make sure it’s at least 100 ounces.  I’ve been doing this one since our first IVF cycle, so it’s just gotten easier for me.
5. Get 8 hours of sleep each night – Lord knows I try.  Let me sleep, people, and don’t give me a hard time for it!  Sleep is detrimental to weight loss!!!  Even Snopes will tell you so.
6. Take fish oil and a multi-vitamin – Like I said before, I’ve been doing this one for over a year, so check!
I’ve started receiving more compliments, which has been a great motivator.  I just ordered new work pants for my uniform, and they’re already starting to get a little big.  Woo hoo!!
Other than all of that, I’ve had a few people ask me why I want to get skinny before getting pregnant because I’ll just get fat, again.  To those people, I would like to say, “You’re right.  Why should I waste my time trying to get healthy for this child I plan to carry for 9 months?  I’ll just go back to my fast food diet.  Thank you for helping me see the light.”  J  Can’t rain on this girl’s parade!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Those Darn Doldrums

This morning, I read a blog entry from Jen Hatmaker (  If you don’t follow her blog, I will tell you one thing:  You’re missing out!  The woman is brilliant!  Now, obviously, I am not a fulltime mother, but I think her blog tells a lot of stories about what it is like to be a fulltime mother.  I think she’s raw and honest and hilarious.

Anyway, the entry I read of hers this morning was called “Stuck in the Doldrums,” and I completely related.  You see, until about a month ago, I had been stuck in the doldrums for quite some time.  I was just down on myself.  Most of the time, I played happy and genuinely loved everything about my life…except me.  Seriously, I loved my husband, my family, my friends, my town, my home, my job (for the most part), everything.  However, I was unhappy with myself.  Strange, huh?  I wonder if anyone else ever has that feeling.  Well, I found that eating clean and working out has started to turn my opinion of myself around.  Plus, I have more energy to tackle my ever-growing to do list.  Both body image and my tasks were reasons for my case of the doldrums.  The last few weeks, though, things have really been turning around in these two areas.  Wooooo!!  (Yes, I can still pretend to be a “woo girl.”)

Well, yesterday was a randomly placed ‘Doldrum Day,’ as I will now call them.  They are so strange to me because they come out of nowhere and leave me feeling helpless and scared and full of doubt.  I think I know what triggered my case of the doldrums yesterday, and it wasn’t just one thing.  This may sound silly, but this is what set me in motion:
1.       I read a blog by Jen Hatmaker about her two adopted children.  She had so much love for them, and it made me start rethinking a second IVF cycle again.  I started wondering if God’s plan for us is to adopt.
2.       Then, I started wondering if maybe I would be okay if I never had a baby.  After all, I already have 3 amazing step kids.  Some people never get that.  When I head down this path, I start to wonder if I’ve been off course on my life plan my entire life.
3.       To top it all off, my friend, Rachel (mother of twin girls), wrote an awesome and timely Facebook post about infertility.  I loved it.  It was just what I needed to start pulling me out of my funk.  Then, a small person left some rude, inconsiderate comments that I let get the better of me.  I debated with him on Rachel’s post and let myself get fired up, adding to my ‘Doldrum Day.’

However, luckily, after texting with Rachel a bit, I was starting to feel better.  I took some time when I got home to tell Todd about my day.  He did exactly what I needed him to do and listened.  I allowed myself to cry alone, too.  And just like that, my ‘Doldrum Day’ was over.  I was feeling much better and actually rewarded myself with some ‘Dessert TV.’  (I stole that phrase from Ashleigh.  Basically, it’s TV that’s so good but so bad for you.  J)

Now, on a more positive note, I made a terribly-okay pancake for breakfast yesterday.  The instructions told me to mix 3 egg whites, organic pumpkin, rolled oats, cinnamon, and Stevia.  We asked our challenge coordinator how much cinnamon and Stevia, and she said to use as much as you want.  Well, I’m an engineer, not a cook.  (On a side note, I can cook just fine if I have a recipe.  One of my biggest pet peeves is being told I can’t cook.  For some reason, it’s a “joke” that doesn’t sit well with me.  Stepping off soapbox…)  “As much as you want” is not the type of recipe instructions I like to have.  I added 1 tablespoon of each cinnamon and Stevia.  Yes, once I poured the cinnamon in, I realized how much that was.  Todd got a good chuckle from this, and so did I…until I had to eat it.  I’m not even sure there was pumpkin in there, but there was definitely cinnamon!  Needless to say, I only ate half of the pancake.  Eek!!

The first lesson of yesterday was that I feel blessed to know so many people that have dealt with infertility and know how tough it can be.  However, I also hate that I know so many people that have gone down this rough road.

Second lesson learned of the day was that less is more with cinnamon.  At least I tried!  J  

Happy Thursday everyone!!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Compliments = Motivation

Well, this isn’t quite going to be an exciting blog entry, but I know my mom is anticipating it.  J  Basically, the reason I have decided to start blogging this adventure is two-fold:
1.       I realize that I can and will succeed at this new plan.
2.       I’ve been receiving some amazing compliments.  And compliments, my friend, turn into motivation.  Thanks to the compliments, I’m finally feeling more confident about myself, which is the main reason I have decided to blog, again.

Therefore, I have decided not to keep this a secret.  Now, I will tell you about my compliments, mainly because I want to have them somewhere that I can go read them again if I start to struggle.  I realize I still have a lot of work left ahead of me, but I’ve finally got a solid start!
·       This past weekend, we were on our way to the lake.  We stopped at Subway to get dinner for Todd and the kids.  (I brought along my own food because I’m that determined.)  When I came out of the restroom, all 3 of the kids started asking me if I had lost weight.  They were super sweet about it.  It made my evening.  [Funny side note:  When Kaleb was about 12, we took the kids to Great Wolf Lodge.  I came out in my swimsuit, and he said to me, “It looks like you’ve lost 12 pounds.”  We still have no idea where he came up with that number, but that kid sure put a smile on my face!]
·       When we got to the lake, my cousin, Bradette, made a huge deal off and on all weekend about how much she could see a difference in my size.  I know she would never lie to me, so that made me feel super good.
·       On Monday, I had to go into a department I hadn’t been into for a few weeks.  As soon as I walked in, one of the ladies said, “Whoa, you look amazing!”  Then, two other ladies chimed in agreeing with her and asking what I was doing to lose my weight.
·       Every time my mom and Todd see me, they give me compliments.  The other day, Todd told me my belly was shrinking as fast as my chest.  Now, some women might take offense to that, but I loved it!  You see, I lose in my chest first every time.  Therefore, I knew that my weight loss has potentially moved from the chest to the tummy, and I’m happy wherever I can lose.

I do feel better about myself.  I haven’t felt this physically good in a very long time.  It just makes me happy.  Now, I’m headed to eat a Snicker’s…

Nooooooo, I’m only kidding.  I just ate shrimp, real peanut butter, and a spinach and tomato salad.  Yum!  Food is fuel, baby!!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Eat Clean, Train Dirty

I have finally decided to make a little change to my blog…for now.  I started a fat loss plan 3 weeks ago.  I wasn’t going to blog about it because, as you’ll read below, I’m a yo-yo dieter.  I’m sick of telling people about my new diet to just stop doing it a few weeks later.  However, I have finally found a plan that works for me and that I’m succeeding at.  (I know I just ended that sentence with ‘at,’ but the proper way to say it sounds so formal for a blog.)  J  Anyway, in 3 weeks, I have lost 5-6 pounds (depending on the day I weigh), at least 6” total in 6 areas (so an average of 1” in each area), and almost 2.5 pounds of fat.  Therefore, I’m going to take you on my fat loss journey for the next 6 weeks.  I wrote two blog entries at the beginning of this craze.  I’ll add more tomorrow about why I’ve chosen to blog this experience now.

As an added note, we are going to do our next IVF cycle sometime between October and January.  This new meal and work out plan is filling my project void until then, so I may as well let it fill the blog void, too.

Friday, July 19 – The Calm Fear Before the Storm
For years, I have struggled with my weight.  I’m a yo-yo dieter!  I can remember my mother telling me in my twenties that if I continued eating like I was without exercising, I would regret it someday.  I hate admitting when she’s right, but she was right.  J  Todd and I have talked about losing weight a million times in the 8.5 years we have been together…literally, a million.  I can’t think of another conversation we have ever had with each other.

I can remember the first time Todd and I went to 24 Hour Fitness when we lived in Dallas and joined.  We paid for 3 years up front because that would give us a lifetime membership for just $29/year for all of the years after.  Well, we did a great job working out for about 7 weeks and never went back.  Now, we live in Oklahoma where they don’t even have a 24 Hour Fitness.  Money down the tubes.

My next weight loss attempt was for our wedding in March 2010.  I did drop a few pounds by going to the gym and cutting back on my calories.  However, I was living with my cousin, so cutting back on my calories meant eating Lean Pockets, Smart Ones, and carrots.  Not the worst diet in the world, but definitely no way to lose weight the healthy way or keep it off.

The next attempt I vividly remember was hCG in June, 2011.  This was a terrible idea.  Let me repeat:  THIS WAS A TERRIBLE IDEA!!  hCG is a supplement that pregnant women produce to keep you from having to double your calories and still not starve the baby.  Natural = healthy, right?  WRONG!  Basically, you take the supplement and eat 500 calories each day for 3 weeks.  We were flawless on it.  We didn’t cheat one time.  It was awesome.  I lost 15 pounds in 3 weeks, and Todd lost 20 pounds.  We looked so much better!  We even kept it off for quite a while.  Then, we gained it back…two-fold (at least for me).

We did another attempt at hCG in April, 2012, and I still lost another 13.5 pounds; however, keep in mind that my weight at the end of this second round was still more than my starting weight at the beginning of the first round.  Yeah, I know.  We started a third round of hCG just a few weeks later and failed miserably.  We were over dieting!

I’ve managed to keep half of that 13.5 pounds off, but that’s only because of my workouts.

In October 2012, I started at Tulsa Fit Body Boot Camp.  I started going to workouts 5 days a week for 35 minutes of intense workouts.  I loved it.  I still do.  However, I was having no success at changing my diet.  I knew I needed a lifestyle change.  I’ve been up and down on the scales the last few years, and I’m tired of it.

Monday is a new day.  I’m terrified.  TERRIFIED!!!  I have no idea how to get myself to believe that I can do this.  I’m starting a 9-week program conducted by the owner of my boot camp gym, Stephanie Flynn.  Basically, I will follow these rules:
1.       Eat the meal plan provided by Stephanie
2.       Go to boot camp 5 days a week, plus perform 2-3 at-home workouts a week
3.       Walk 10,000 steps each day (which I think is approximately 4 miles)
4.       Drink 100 ounces of water each day
5.       Get 8 hours of sleep each night
6.       Take fish oil and a multi-vitamin, which I’ve been doing for over a year, so check!

Stephanie corresponds with us daily on our workouts and meals.  Each week, we submit pictures and our weight.  Every other week, we submit our measurements and body fat percentage.

In 9 weeks, I’m hoping to lose 2 dress sizes (not my complete end goal but a goal I can strive for in 9 weeks).  I read an article that said BMI calculators are wrong.  You shouldn’t judge yourself by weight.  You should judge by body fat percentage because that’s the best way to tell if you’re fit.  Skinny doesn’t always mean fit.  I think I agree with this, and I hope it is right.

The fear is that I’ve always failed.  Even when I’ve lost it, I’ve gained it back.  However, if I don’t lose it this time, I may never be fit, again.  I’m so terrified, though, that I’m refusing to put this on my blog right now.  Instead, I’m just keeping it to myself.  I don’t want my family and friends saying, “Oh, Laura’s on another diet again.  Surprise, surprise.”  I need a little faith in myself, huh?

Thursday, July 25 – My Hubby is a Supporter!
Well, I’m about 3 ½ days into my Game Changer program.  So far, things are going pretty well.  I’ve really stuck to the meal plan, and I’ve been doing all of my workouts.  I have Todd doing the home workouts with me.  He told me he was impressed with my ability, now.  It’s been a few years since we worked out together, so I’m in better shape than I was then.  That made me happy.

On Tuesday, I had a lot of cravings.  I’ve had some others at different times, but Tuesday evening was the worst.  I got on Facebook and asked for support from the Game Changer group.  It worked.  They gave me lots of great ideas of things to do to keep my mind off it.  Basically, I’ve decided that this is going to be just like quitting smoking, but maybe harder.  I don’t think my addiction is as strong, but there is easier access to the food I shouldn’t have than cigarettes that were only at the store.  I’m constantly surrounded by junk food, people talking about junk food, and commercials about junk food.  It sucks, but I have to tune it all out and remember my goals:  getting fit and getting pregnant!

My cousin, Bradette, gave me a new motto to live by:  Eat to live, don’t live to eat.  I love that!  Now, I just have to start believing it.  I’m working on it, though…one day at a time.

Oh, and I’ve learned to like 3 new things this week:  balsamic vinegar & EVOO salad dressing, “healthy” bread – Ezekiel brand, and oatmeal.  I’m still working on the oatmeal a little, but it wasn’t too terribly bad for breakfast this morning.