Just Heather

I took last week off of blogging my weight loss journey. Mostly because there was no weight loss. At least, that’s what I’m assuming—I took a week off from the scale, too! I just didn’t want to see that number, after an indulgent family weekend.

I spent Labor Day weekend at my parents’ and decided that I wouldn’t stress over foods & miss out on my hometown favorites. We had Procopio’s pizza, Charlie’s chocolates, movie theater popcorn, two (yes, two!) birthday parties with cupcakes & ice cream and plenty of homemade family favorites.

And, I allowed myself to enjoy it all! I made good choices when they were available—fruit, salads, water and veggies—but mostly I just ate what looked good. Basically? That meant a whole lot of carbs. The good news is, I didn’t overeat!

A year ago at these family events, I would have eaten whatever I wanted, skipped the veggies, grabbed a soda, then gone back for more. This year? I didn’t even want seconds—my body is too aware of proper portions & fullness cues to overeat.

I also stayed active—I did jump squats all weekend, on Gruntstyle’s orders. Plus, we played a pretty active game of kickball with the whole family on Monday. I’m thrilled to be in better shape so I was able to take part in it. We had so much fun!

This week, I’m back to following my meal plan. Plus, I was offered the opportunity to join a fitness boot camp this month, and it seemed like the perfect time to try it out. We started earlier today—whew! I thought I had been getting myself in pretty decent shape, but this worked muscles that I didn’t even know existed.

I started out doing pretty well—setting off at a good clip for the warmup walk and leading the pack during our run. Many of the exercises were familiar(ish), but this time? I had a trainer keeping an eye on me, making sure I did everything right and pushing me to go further. It was a fun, relaxed environment where we’re encouraged to push harder but given the freedom to set our own pace.

I was dripping sweat halfway through the hour and out of water before we finished. By the end, I was fading and feeling it pretty good! I hope to have a little more endurance for Wednesday’s workout, now that I have a better idea of what to expect. (Note to self: bring a towel and a larger water bottle!)

This should be an interesting month. My muscles were feeling it so much on the drive home that I took new measurements. I’ve lost another 3 inches since completing the Knockout the Fat program, but I’m hoping to firm up my arms & abs, especially. I’ll also take new “after” photos at the end of boot camp.

I can’t wait to see the results for myself!

Updated Measurements:

Bust: 35″ (-1.5″)
Waist: 29″ (-8″)
Hips: 37.5″ (-4.5″)
Thigh: 20″ (-3.5″ each)
Arm: 11″ (-1.5″ each)

Total Inches Lost: 24″

Starting Weigh-In:
195 pounds
This Week’s Weigh-In: 173 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: 1.5 pounds
Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 22 pounds
BMI: 24.8

Disclosure: I have received a free month of fitness boot camp from Indy Boot Camps to facilitate a series of posts on my weight loss journey. All opinions are, as always, 100% mine.

The girls went back to school last week, and I started out doing pretty well. I got the girls ready, took them to school, came home and promptly worked out & went for a run. The run? Did not go well. I was thinking there might be something wrong with my inhaler, and I was right. It’s broken, and I have no refills. Now I have to wait until I can get into my doctor, but that’s not even the reason for this week’s weight gain.

A few days after my first run, I went for a long walk instead—my lungs can handle walking. Then, our week was turned upside down when the hubby’s grandpa had open heart surgery. He seems to be doing well, but it was a long day at the hospital, munching on candy. In retrospect, I should have packed healthier snacks, but we went with comfort.

The next day, after thing were looking better, I went for a walk with Lorelai and picked up the weights for the first time in weeks. I’m guessing that was more responsible for my weight gain than a single week. I still have high hopes of getting into a better routine now that the girls are back in school. It just didn’t happen in the first week.

Okay, so it’s a little worse than that. I actually managed to get myself back into overweight range. In addition to my workout routine not getting reestablished, the meal planning really wasn’t there. We were a chaotic mess of school and hospital visits, and I was so busy focusing on shopping for their healthy lunchboxes that I didn’t do a very good job taking care of me.

That changes. Now. I had a great breakfast, and jumped into a short a workout before lunch. I still can’t run, but I’ll just walk farther, until I can get the inhaler issue fixed. I need a steadier workout routine—when I was into the 30 Day Shred, I was on. it. The steady program and the numbered days helped me stay consistent.

I was considering P90X, but I think I need something smaller first to get me back in the game. Gruntstyle‘s Mamavation workouts are looking pretty solid—I need a good challenge to get me back in the game, though. It feeds into my competitive nature and provides the accountability I need. Luckily, Drill Sergeant Alarik is more than willing to kick my butt.

He assigned Megan and me 250 situps & pushups for today, when he saw us discussing the idea. Then, he gave me 50 more for an off comment. Don’t mess with @Gruntstyle, folks! I’m hoping this is just the kick in the pants I needed to get me back on track.

How do you get a restart with your fitness goals?

{scale pic coming soon. Stupid, broken card reader.}
Starting Weigh-In: 195 pounds
Today’s Weigh-In: 174.5 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: 3.5 pound gain (ugh!)
Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 20.5 pounds
BMI: 24.97

Today, I dropped the girls off for their first day of school. While I’m sad to see our summer go, I am excited for all the free time. My youngest is in kindergarten this year and will now be in school 3 full days each week. That prospect makes a lot of moms sad, but this mom? Dove straight into a new exercise DVD, then went for a run.

I am thrilled to get back into an exercise routine. I have slacked off a lot over the last couple weeks! I’m venturing out on my own, for the first time since starting this journey. No official campaign prodding me along, no exercise assignments, no dated fitness program—just me and the scale! And, the Mamavation Sistahood. Thanks for your support in the last 6 months. It means more than you’ll ever know.

I’m in a tough place with my weight loss journey now, though. Officially, I am not overweight. I still want to get further into the normal BMI, but there’s less support out there when you aren’t overweight. For starters, I can’t apply to be the next Mamavation Mom (which is an awesome campaign this time because Bookie Boo’s looking for couples!).

I’m learning I really need the accountability of a specific program. Move It, Lose It, Knockout the Fat, 30 Day Shred—they were all clearly defined and finite, which made it manageable. Left to my own devices? I slack. I want to pick up another numbered fitness program, but I also know I need to learn to do this for myself. So, I’m kind of creating my own fitness program.

I’ll be working out with a DVD Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday mornings—I have Bob Harper’s Yoga for Warriors to start—and continue the Couch to 5K throughout the week. On Thursday & Friday, I plan to work Lorelai into my routine so I need something active we can do together. Just Dance is always a good one! We’ll also take walks to playgrounds where she can run & slide, and I can do additional exercises.

I am pleased to say my menu plan has stayed pretty steady, though I did break one major streak. Remember my soda addiction? Between Mamavation applications, the MiLi challenge and the Knockout the Fat program, I was soda free for 23 weeks! Last week, when my contractual obligation was officially over, I ordered a Mountain Dew with my State Fair meal. It was not tasty!

So, of course, I decided Mountain Dew was a poor first choice. I waited the week, then bought Sunkist. As a former 6-pack a day Sunkist addict, I just knew that would be the stuff. And, I was armed with a plan to keep the addiction from creeping up again. First, no soda at home—that was my baby step that lost 6 pounds at the beginning of the year.

The big one, though, was my plan to go soda free every time the Mamavation applicants were required to—solidarity for the sistahood! Turns out? I don’t need a plan because not even Sunkist tastes the way I remembered it. I know now I don’t need that crap. I can’t claim I won’t order a Coke with my pizza or buy into a craving now & then, but I can officially say I’m not really a soda drinker.

I’m excited because I know that will make it easier to keep the weight off. I’m down another pound in the last 2 weeks, even with very little physical activity. Now that the girls are back to school, I’ll have more time for fitness again. And, I hope to have the last 15 pounds knocked out by the end of the year!

{scale pic coming when the hubby gets home—my card reader is still broken}
Starting Weigh-In: 195 pounds
Today’s Weigh-In: 171 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: .5 pounds
Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 24 pounds
BMI: 24.49

The George Foreman Knockout the Fat Weight Loss Challenge has officially closed, and I’m unbelievably thrilled to end at a normal BMI! I’m also a little surprised, after 5 days in San Diego. I knew I’d gain weight, so keeping it to a single pound makes me happy. That had to be all about the exercise—I actually got up in the mornings and worked out before the conference!

On Thursday, I hit the hotel gym with my (amazingly awesome) roomie, Kristen. On Friday, I woke up at the butt crack of dawn and ran the BlogHer 5K. Running by the bay? Pretty freaking cool. By Saturday, I was exhausted and nursing my sore feet so I opted for sleep over sweat. I did, however, dance hard all night long so I’m totally sure that counts!

As for my meals, I did pretty well with making healthy choices. I had plenty of tasty salads all week—my favorite was the Mongolian Chicken Salad from the Hawaiian Fusion restaurant at the conference hotel. It reminded me a bit of the barbecue chicken salads we make here at home:

The salads helped keep me in check, while I was away from my George Foreman grill—veggies, grilled meats, no carbs! I packed in healthy breakfasts & snacks. I had gluten free cereal bars and apples, mostly. But, it was the sugary samples and, ahem, tasty evening beverages that did me in. I’m okay with it, though, because a weekend like this doesn’t come around all the time!

I mean, how many chances do I get to wear a size 10 little black dress and hear everyone tell me how amazing I look? That was totally my favorite part of BlogHer all weekend (well, aside from hanging out with Leah, Shelley, Angela and Lori)—listening to people I haven’t seen in a year talking about how awesome I look. The ego boost? Pretty freaking cool.

Which is why I decided to do my final George Foreman Knockout the Fat Weight Loss Challenge in my little black dress:

And, yes, it’s time for another round of swimsuit pictures! I also have updated measurements & weight loss totals. This is feeling kinda final, but it’s just because I’ve finally hit a normal BMI and have reached the end of organized weight loss programs.

And, in case you’ve forgotten what I looked like 90 days ago:

And, 2 months before that:

I will be keeping it up, but I’m redefining my goals a bit. In March, I thought I’d like to lose 40 pounds. Now? I just don’t care what the scale says. I’ve seen too much up & down as I build muscle, in addition to losing fat. So, my goal is just to continue doing what I’m doing, tone the flab a little more and feel good about how I look!

Updated Measurements

Bust: 33″ (-3.5″)
Waist: 29″ (-8″)
Hips: 38″ (-4″)
Thigh: 20.5″ (-3″ each)
Arm: 11.25″ (-1.25″ each)

Total Inches Lost: 21″

Knockout the Fat Final Weigh-InStarting Weigh-In: 195 pounds
Today’s Weigh-In: 173 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: 1 pound gain

Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 22 pounds
Total Knockout the Fat Weight Loss: 14.5 pounds

BMI: 24.78

Disclosure: The George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge is a compensated program. As an ambassador for George Foreman, I received a George Foreman grill and will be paid for my time at the end of the 90 day challenge. All opinions are, as always, 100% mine!

Today starts the final week of the George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge, and I couldn’t be more excited to share the results of my weigh-in. I am now officially at a normal BMI—by 2.5 pounds! By sticking with my exercise programs, paying attention to my meal plan and curbing the extra snacking, I was able to lose 4 pounds this week.

The trick will be keeping it off, when I head to BlogHer later this week! I know my food will be fine. It’s the sugary drinks I’m a little concerned about. Of course, my philosophy has always been to ease up for special occasions, so I will be totally okay with a little weight gain next week.

I just hope I can keep it to under 2.5 pounds. I don’t ever want to be overweight again!

BlogHer is going to be amazing! Not only do I get to see good friends, party like a rock star with the Clever Girls and enjoy tasty cocktails (hello, 10 drink tickets!) but we’ll be in gorgeous San Diego. I haven’t been to California since I was 4 years old, so this is essentially my first time on the west coast.

Checking the weather reports tells me it will be absolutely perfect. I am so ready to escape this heat. It’s absolutely insane in Indiana right now. Over 100° heat factor every day (oh, the humidity!) and going on something like 20 90+ days in a row. Sunny and 70s looks like absolute bliss!

I have even signed up for the BlogHer 5K and Sweat Pink boot camp—anything for the chance to spend some time outdoors in the beautiful San Diego sun. It’s too hot here to even think about a 5K. Heck, I don’t even want to think about cooking. At least we’re beating the heat with my George Foreman grill.

When I return home to the melt-your-face heat, it will be time for my final George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge weigh-in and updated measurements & pictures. It will also be time to reestablish goals. I’m more concerned with how I look & feel than the numbers on the scale, so my focus will be more on specific things I can check off than how much I weigh.

Like, this week, I will finish the 30 Day Shred. I’m going to need a new program to replace it, since I’m finding that sort of accountability is working well for me. I was considering P90X, but I don’t know if I have the time to dedicate to it just yet. I also want to finish the Couch to 5K program, ending with running a full 5K in October.

I’m also considering adding a larger fitness goal to my 40×40 list. I need something to replace #38. You know, since there won’t actually be any more shuttle launches for me to attend. Emily suggests a half marathon—yikes! What do you think?

{scale pic coming when the hubby gets home—stupid, broken card reader}
Starting Weigh-In: 195 pounds
Today’s Weigh-In: 172 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: 4 pounds
Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 23 pounds
Total Knockout The Fat Weight Loss: 15.5 pounds
BMI: 24.65 (that’s normal!)

Sistahood Question: What are the next big goals you want to tackle?
This post is sponsored by Flatout Bread, and I’m writing this to be entered into a giveaway hosted by Mamavation.

Disclosure: The George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge is a compensated program. As an ambassador for George Foreman, I received a George Foreman grill and will be paid for my time at the end of the 90 day challenge. All opinions are, as always, 100% mine!

The only surprising thing about gaining a pound this week is that it was only one! I have been doing really well with my menu plan and stayed consistent with working out & running. However, I still cave for special occasions—and last week was full of them! With my middle child at Girl Scout camp and the other girls at my parents’ house, we really made the most of our kid free week.

I think I only really ate well a couple days last week. There was a margarita night (complete with nachos!), a girls’ night movie (compete with buttery popcorn), a blogging conference (complete with social hours—and sangria!) and a leisurely trip back home with my roommates (complete with a stop at the candy factory & dairy farm).

So, how did I keep my weight gain to a single pound with all of that?

It was partly due to keeping up with running and 30 Day Shred, and partly due to making good choices in between all the junk! After years and years of not eating breakfast at all, I am giving each day a healthy start with whole grains, fruit & milk. It’s typically waffles or toast with peanut butter & banana, with the occasional homemade smoothie with granola or a bowl of rice cereal.

I also made healthy meal choices, for the most party. You know, when I wasn’t downing a plate of nachos with my margarita! It was all the extras that did me in—drinks with friends, indulgent snacks and, uh, more drinks. Still, a pound isn’t so bad and I totally earned it! So, since I don’t have weight loss to cheer this week, I’m going to focus on the other things I’ve gained through the George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge:

  • Energy: Eating right, staying active? Yeah, it actually produces more energy! I am more active, more involved with my kids and enjoying things I never thought I would. While I used to just watch the girls play Just Dance 2, now I pretty much rock it out right along with them.
  • Time: This pretty much goes right along with energy because it’s all about sleeping less! Yes, I’m spending more time working out and planning meals, but I still find myself with additional time on my hands that used to be spent on naps.
  • New Recipes: All the amazing recipes from Inspired RD and George Foreman have really gotten us out of a long standing rut. Plus, a good, healthy menu plan has given me more food choices as well. I know the hubby is extremely grateful! He’s a much more adventurous eater than I.
  • More Shopping Options: Now that I’m down a size (and a half!), there seem to be a lot more choices. I’ve made the shift out of misses, which opens up a world of opportunity. Plus, I no longer have to order my bras online. They sell my size in normal stores!
  • Self-Confidence: It’s hard to feel self-conscious when everyone you see is telling you how awesome you look, but I feel it even without that ego boost! Still, there’s nothing quite like running into people you haven’t seen in a year and hearing their reactions.
  • Hobbies: Who knew I would actually enjoy working out & running?! Not only do I feel good after, but I kinda like some of the exercises (Psst…planks! Not you.) And, while I can’t yet say I like running, I do like the festival atmosphere of a 5K. I already have another one on the books for fall—planning to run this one and so excited about it!
  • Muscles: Oh, yes, I have muscles! Real ones. In places I never realized could have muscles! Abs? Not so much, but I’m rocking the Grunt Style Ab Crusher as often as my body can handle it. One day, I will add Abs to the list of things I’ve gained on this journey.
  • Closer Relationships: Running with friends, cheering one another on through our weight loss and forming an organized 30 Day Shred group has brought me closer to some of local blog friends. It’s just plain lovely. I am also feeling closer to the hubby, as we get on this healthy path together.

When this whole process started, I just thought Id lose some weight and move on. I had no idea my whole life would change. I’m truly a completely different person than I was 4 months ago.

And, I’m never going back.

Starting Weigh-In: 195 pounds
Today’s Weigh-In: 176.5 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: 1 pound gain
Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 18.5 pounds
Total Knockout The Fat Weight Loss: 11 pounds
BMI: 25.25

Sistahood Question: What has been your favorite Grunt Style workout? If you aren’t doing his workouts what has been your strength training routine?

This post is sponsored by Grunt Style, and I’m writing this to be entered into a giveaway hosted by Mamavation, sponsored by Grunt Style.

Disclosure: The George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge is a compensated program. As an ambassador for George Foreman, I received a George Foreman grill and will be paid for my time at the end of the 90 day challenge. All opinions are, as always, 100% mine!

So, I’m not super confident with last week’s weight in. It was two days late, due to travel & Wii Fit issues. Regardless, the .5 gain wasn’t too bad, considering the way I ate on Monday & Tuesday. That said, it makes me not 100% confident with this week’s weigh-in. Still, a pound in 5 days is pretty good, I think!

George Foreman grilled ham & cheese

My meal plan is going well, and I’ve been working out like a fiend. I am hitting it hard with my 30 Day Shred group. I’m also progressing nicely with the Couch to 5K program—I’m up to week 3 now! I really didn’t think yesterday’s run would go well. Three minutes was going to be my longest interval ever! (Yes, seriously. Hush—I’m new at this running thing.)

But, I did it! I’m so glad I mentioned my breathing issues to my doc so we can get it under control. The inhaler is really helping me through my cardio workouts. I’m excited to be making so much progress with my fitness programs, now that I can breathe a little better. This weekend, I also progressed to Level 2 on the 30 Day Shred DVD.

It’s pretty much killer! True story. I’m taking today off, because my legs are dying after 6 straight days of the shred and 3 runs in a row. I didn’t mean for that to happen, but it was necessary for scheduling purposes. So, today is a day of rest, and tomorrow I start again—putting a little more space between my runs.

I’m losing inches again, too. That helps a lot, when the scale isn’t moving much. We have just 4 weeks left in the George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge, but I don’t plan to stop until I reach my ultimate goal. I’m almost halfway there now, and I’ll be posting measurements & pics in another month.

I can’t wait to see the changes!

Starting Weigh-In: 195 pounds
Today’s Weigh-In: 175.5 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: 1 pound
Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 19.5 pounds
Total Knockout The Fat Weight Loss: 12 pounds
BMI: 25.15 (So close to normal!!)

Sistahood Question: There will be no Mamavation Mondays TV show this week so that we can focus on the party. Follow Mamavation on Twitter from 8-10 PM EST on Monday 11 July 2011 for the Grunt Style sponsored party.

Disclosure: The George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge is a compensated program. As an ambassador for George Foreman, I received a George Foreman grill and will be paid for my time at the end of the 90 day challenge. All opinions are, as always, 100% mine!

We have just finished Week 8 of the George Foreman Knockout the Fat Weight Loss Challenge, and it has been a pretty busy one! Last week, I kicked off the Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred program with a few of my Twitter & real life friends. (They are one and the same here in Indiana! Indy geek girls stick together.)

I’m also restarting the Couch to 5K program—shredder by day, runner by night! I’m excited to be able to physically handle it all, without too much difficulty. I finally got into my doctor, since I’ve been having trouble with cardio. I get short of breath, really quickly. She ordered a prescription, a chest x-ray and some pulmonary function tests.

I don’t have the results of everything yet, but I did take a run that night after a few puffs on my new inhaler. Best. Run. Ever. True story. I think this is really going to make a difference, and finally get me past week 1 in the Couch to 5K. I want to be able to run the entire Wine at the Line 5K I just registered for. Between the 30 Day Shred and the running, I think I’ll be in pretty good shape by then.

George Foreman Turkey BLT

Keeping up with both exercise programs is kicking my metabolism into high gear, though. It’s a lot of work, and I’m obviously burning a lot more calories these days because I. Am. Starving. Alysa and I are going to tweak my meal plan, since I don’t always make the best choices when I just grab a snack to curb the incessant hunger.

I need to build more healthy calories into my meals, maybe add a 3rd snack. Possibly both. When I find myself hungry, between meals or snacks on my plan, I just grab whatever is around. Or, find myself craving not so healthy foods. And, indulging in them. Of course, this is a holiday weekend, and I allow myself to indulge a bit.

I decided months ago that if I’m going to be able to stick with this program, there has to be room for treats & special occasions. I don’t want to be the person turning down birthday cake, for a diet. I don’t want to miss out on holiday favorites because I’m too focused on weight. On the other hand, I don’t want to totally let myself go over an extended holiday, like this one! We’ve been at the lake since Saturday, and I’ve done pretty well.

I focused on healthy meals and brought plenty of fruit to snack on in between. This keeps me out of the chips but doesn’t quite keep me away from the cookies. I’m trying to keep a good balance—somewhere in between no treats and half a batch of cookies! We’ll have my annual 4th of July dessert later today, and that one will be hard to stay away from, since I don’t make it very often. I am making the flag with strawberries & blueberries instead of sugar crystals. That’s progress, at least, but it’s still a tasty, chocolatey dessert.

And, it’s only for the weekend. If I’m eating healthy meals and focusing on good snacks on a daily basis, a few days out of a month are going to be okay. Maybe it will halt my weight loss this week (we’ll get to see the final results next Monday!), but it won’t make a big difference in the grand scheme of things. Because it’s about way more than losing weight for a little while.

It’s about making permanent changes.

Starting Weigh-In: 195 pounds
Today’s Weigh-In: 176.5 pounds
This Week’s Weight Loss: .5 pound gain
Total Mamavation Weight Loss: 18.5 pounds
Total Knockout The Fat Weight Loss: 11 pounds
BMI: 25.25

Sistahood Question: How did well did you manage to eat healthy over the holiday weekend? Any tips for the rest of the summer?

This post is sponsored by Eco-Foil Pans, and I’m writing this to be entered into a giveaway for Eco-Foil prize pack, hosted by Mamavation.

Disclosure: The George Foreman Knock out the Fat Weight Loss Challenge is a compensated program. As an ambassador for George Foreman, I received a George Foreman grill and will be paid for my time at the end of the 90 day challenge. All opinions are, as always, 100% mine!