Friday, May 17, 2013

School

I have started back to school and am gone M-F from 6 am to 9 pm so my days are pretty full right now.  Because of that... I will not be posting regularly for the summer.  I will post when I can, and try and do some weight loss updates since I am taking 2 PE classes this summer.  Hope everyone has a great summer!

Friday, May 03, 2013

Fitness Fridays- Mood lifters

  1. Eat often and eat light. When you eat at regular intervals throughout the day you will prevent dips in your blood sugar that can negatively affect your mood. Plan your meals and snacks to prevent yourself from getting overly hungry, aiming for three to six eating episodes (total meals plus snacks) each day.
     
  2. Limit refined carbohydrates such as soda, candy, cookies, and white flour, which are concentrated sources of sugar. These foods may give you an immediate rush of energy, but they will cause you to crash and fatigue soon after.
     
  3. Include a small amount of lean protein at every meal and snack. Protein will leave you feeling alert and productive for hours.
     
  4. Eat foods rich in omega-3 fats. These foods have been shown to lift moods and can possibly alleviate depression. Omega-3 fats are found in oily fish like salmon or sardines, canola and olive oils, as well as flaxseeds and walnuts.
     
  5. Ramp up your B-12 and folate (folic acid). Scientists believe these nutrients help the body produce a neurotransmitter called serotonin—a known mood stabilizer. Shellfish, fortified cereal, oatmeal, wheat germ, and vegetables are some of the many foods rich in these nutrients.
     
  6. Get your daily dose of exercise. Whether it’s a formal session at the gym, a walk with the dog, engaging in a sport or just playing with your kids, getting up and moving will boost your mood and energy level.
     
  7. Stick to a regular sleep schedule—even on the weekends. Although most adults require between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night, you might need slightly more or less to function optimally. The important thing is that you consistently get the sleep you need.
     
  8. Go outside and breathe in the fresh air. Take a break from your home or office to get some air and sunshine. Even stepping out into cold weather will wake you up and refresh your mind.
     
  9. Listen to music you love. When your mood is spiraling downhill and the little voice in your head is anything but positive, turn on your favorite tunes and sing along. Soon, sweet music will fill your mind instead of negative thoughts.
     
  10. Indulge your senses. Sights, smells, sounds, tastes and tactile sensations can quickly change your mood. Light a scented candle that evokes memories of the holidays, bake cookies to remind you of happy times at your grandmother’s, buy your favorite flowers and revel in the smell (and sight) of them, or soak in a scented bubble bath while listening to soothing music.
     
  11. Do something that brings you joy. Whether it’s going to a movie, reading a novel or having lunch with your best friend, take a well-deserved break from work or stressful situations and do something you love. The change in mood will lead to better concentration and efficiency once you return to the task at hand.
     
  12. Play or cuddle up with your furry friend. Just petting your dog or cat has been shown to lower blood pressure and evoke a sense of calmness, happiness and well-being. If you don’t own a pet, visit a pet store or volunteer at an animal shelter to get your furry fix.
     
  13. Volunteer. There is nothing like the act of giving to those in need to make you feel appreciative of the life you lead. Walk dogs at an animal shelter, feed the homeless at a food shelter, teach English at a literacy program, or assist in programs for special needs children. Do your research and you will surely find a group that can use your talents and skills. If time is an issue for you, contribute through donations and you could evoke the same feelings of happiness.
     
  14. Fake it till you make it. Researchers have found that the simple act of smiling seems to activate happiness centers in the brain. Keep smiling and in time, your mood will match your facial expression.
     
  15. Create a list of natural mood enhancers that will work for you. Feeling angry? Write in your journal. Stressed? Try a yoga class. If you're exhausted, take a 20-minute nap. And if you’re feeling down, rent a funny movie. Remember, you have a choice and the ability to change your mood. With some trial and error, you will figure out the best strategies that work for you.
Read full article here.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Wednesday Words

I haven't been very lovable lately, but I am thankful for the friends and family who have still loved me.
Change is never easy, change is a process, and the only one that can change you is you.  So if you don't like how something is... decide to make a change.

Monday, April 29, 2013

MMM- Week 39

Not much to report... was sick most of the week.

Chad and I did go to the timeshare over the weekend, but we were both sick so we slept and watched movies most of the time.

Looking for better days in may.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Fitness Fridays-

I love sparkpeople.com  If you are trying to lose weight or need some help living a healthy lifestyle, check it out. 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wednesday Words

Amen.


In honor of my sister, who has a birthday later this week.  I love you Julie and couldn't imagine my life without you, you have done so much for me and I thank you!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Week 38- MMM

Well the week started out pretty rough.  Still no exercise and the Xanax stopped helping me sleep.  I went to the doctor on Wednesday and he changed me to Ativan.  Had high hopes for it, but alas it has taken me 2-3 hours to fall asleep and I wake up at least 5 times during the night since I started taking it...Probably calling him Monday morning.

The weather has been icky all week-lots of rain and even some snow flurries.  Ick.  However the weekend turned out to be pretty nice.  Chad and I went bike riding.  On Saturday we were going along great, the first 3.5 miles just zoomed by... then we decided to take a scenic off trail... it was beautiful... then my chain broke.  Boo.  Chad was able to fix it, however he put the chain back together before he put it on the bike, so we weren't able to reattach the chain to the bike. Double boo.  He walked with me back to the main trail and then I walked to the nearest trail access spot while he rode the 3.5 miles back to the car and came and picked me up.  We took the bike to the shop right away, but won't have it back till Tuesday.  So we are planning on going again today, so I borrowed his mom's bike... no padded seat so I am sure I will be even more saddle sore than I am already.  Oh well it was fun.

We decided next weekend to head down to the Timeshare for a few days.  Chad starts back to school the first week in may and I start later in the month (I think I might actually start in june but still), so we decided it would be nice to have a quiet relaxing weekend away.  maybe do some horseback riding, or bike riding.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Fitness Fridays- Dental Health

Dental Care is super important to your overall health... if you haven't been to the dentist in awhile, consider making an appointment ASAP.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wednesday Words

This is adorable.  The LDS website has a lot of cute printables, even if your not a member of the LDS church (which I am not).  And this one has elephants! 

Remember you are a child of God... and he will not leave you.

Love yourself! 

Monday, April 15, 2013

MMM- week 37

Hmm not much to report on the weight loss side of life... haven't worked out all week.  Been sleeping really badly.  Having lots of nightmares and doing a lot of tossing and turning.  While fighting ninja warriors in my sleep the other night, I kicked Chad out of bed.. he is now sleeping in the other room and the cats either sleep other places or at the very far end of the bed :-(  I see the doctor again on Wednesday, so hopefully we can get something figured out.

Had a fairly busy week/weekend for being off work for most of it.  Worked monday through wednesday.. can't seem to remember what I did thursday.  Friday went to the zoo with my mom, 2 of my nephews, my cousin and her daughter, and chad.  It was fun- but cold.  THen I worked a few hours that evening.  Saturday we had game night with 2 other couples.  We had a taco bar and it was a lot of fun.  Sunday  I didn't do much of anything besides stuff around the house, then worked a few hours as well.

I met one of my goals for 2013... my blog has over 10,000 pageviews :-)  Only 10 more goals to go this year!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Fitness Fridays- Breathing while Running

Breathe Right
Here's how Mindy Solkin, a New York City-based coach, teaches runners to engage their diaphragms.

Open Your Mouth
Your mouth is larger than your nostrils, so it's more effective at taking in oxygen. Also, keeping your mouth open keeps your face more relaxed, which makes it easier to breathe deeply.

Breathe in Patterns
Coordinating your inhales and exhales with your footfalls develops diaphragmatic strength. Start with a 2-2 pattern-breathe in while stepping left, right; breathe out while stepping left, right. Advance to 3-3 (breathe in, step left, right, left; breathe out, step right, left, right), and then a 4-4 pattern.

Breath Enhancers
Cross-training exercises that reduce huffing and puffing
These three Pilates moves strengthen the diaphragm, stretch tight muscles, and improve posture-all of which help you run longer with less effort. Practice each exercise two or three times a week before you run.

1) THE HUNDRED
Lie on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Keep your arms at your sides, palms down. Inhale and lift your head, neck, shoulders, and arms off the ground. Lift your knees and extend your feet so your legs are straight and at a 45-degree angle to the floor. Take five short breaths in and five short breaths out. While doing so, pump your arms, moving them in a controlled up and down manner. Do a cycle of 10 full breaths-each breath includes five inhales and five exhales. After you do 10 complete breaths, you will have completed 100 arm pumps.
> The Payoff: Teaches controlled breathing, so that your inhales and exhales are balanced. Bonus: Builds strong abdominals.

 2) THE SWAN
Lie face down with your palms flat under your shoulders (as if you were going to do a pushup). Look down so your neck is in line with your spine. Inhale and slowly lift your head, neck, shoulders, and chest as you press your hands into the ground. Keep a slight bend in your elbows. As you exhale, slowly lower yourself back down, chest first, then shoulders, neck, chin, and head. To avoid discomfort in your back, concentrate on pulling your shoulders back to open up your chest. Repeat 10 times.
The Payoff: Opens up the chest and deepens your lung capacity to correct shallow breathing.

3) STANDING CHEST EXPANSION
Stand up straight with your feet shoulder-width apart, your knees slightly bent, and your arms at your sides. Inhale and sweep your arms out and up so that your biceps are near your ears and your palms are facing each other. Exhale and lower your arms back down to your sides. Repeat four times, concentrating on breathing deep and opening your chest.
The Payoff: Stretches the intercostal muscles (which lie between the ribs), relaxes the shoulders, engages the diaphragm and pelvic floor, and helps balance breathing between the left and right lungs.

To see the original article or videos of the Pilates moves.... visit: Runner's World

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Monday, April 08, 2013

MMM- Week 36

Had a pretty decent week.  Did 3 workout days.  Not a full week, but better than previous weeks.  Stayed within my calorie consumed goals and met my calorie burn goals.  Lost about a pound, which I will take.   Did well with water as well.

Had a busy week, worked every day.  Took the kids to the nature center one day and then to a park that has animals and a great playground area this week.  They were on spring break so I didn't want to be stuck inside all day, all week!  Finally the weather is warming up enough for us to go outside.   Thinking I will move our letter activities to the morning, so that after lunch we can go outside till nap time.  They will like that alot.

Chad and I went out with some friends Saturday after church.  Unfortunately one of the friends had to leave almost as soon as we got there for a family emergency, but we still had a great time.  Saw some amazing trumpet players at a jazz club.  Probably should of stopped at one drink since they have so many calories, but we don't go out too often, so I let myself enjoy two :-)

Saw some family on Sunday for lunch, which was nice.

Emotionally I am doing ok this week.  Started out kind of rough, just really frustrated and tired.  My cold is attempting to come back so that isn't helping matters either.  But our church message was really good and gave me some things to think about.  My new quote was said by our Pastor, Greg Holder.... "It will take longer than you want, but it won't take longer than you fear."  Everytime I feel myself getting frustrated and beginning to worry, I am repeated this phrase to myself.  All of our problems and issues and stresses will take longer that I want to work, but since I fear they will never be better, they won't take as long as I fear.  God has a plan for us.  And God's timing is perfect, I just need to trust him and let him handle it all.  This too shall pass.


Friday, April 05, 2013

Fitness Fridays- Strength Training

  

Number 5 is my favorite... with more muscle mass (as opposed to fat mass) you burn more while resting... that means you are burning more calories while just sitting, or sleeping, which means you can be actively burning calories (think exercise) less and still see great results!

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Wednesday Words


Smile, Pray, Love.... much better than the Eat, Pray, Love saying... since I am trying to control my eating :-)



Not necessarily supporting NIKE here... but I do love alot of their catch phrases lately.  This one is great. 

Monday, April 01, 2013

MMM- HELLO April

Finally starting to get over this cold!!!  March was very unkind to me with regards to illnesses.  Ready for a new month.  A little warmer weather (please not too warm... dislike being hot!) and hopefully some better energy levels.

Have my menu and workout plan all ready to go for the new month.  Ready to start making some big progress again.

The morning anxiety meds are still making me tired... but starting to find ways to handle it.  Mostly trying to be busy the first few hours after I take it so when Zombie mode hits I have gotten done most of what I need for the day.  Also continuing to schedule reading and puzzle time to help lower my stress and anxiety.  Still sleeping good... though I probably have 2 nights a week where I don't sleep well at all... those type of nights when you just dont feel like your brain shuts off and you toss and turn all night.

Other than that, not much more to report.  This weekend was rather busy with Easter and all.  My parents came over and had Easter dinner with us.  If I get a weekend where I don't have quite as much to get done I do have some extra blog posts planned.  But if I don't have the time I will continue to still stick with just my Monday, Wednesday and Friday posts for this month.  Hang with me... I am slowly getting extra projects done and things taken care of that will help me be able to have more time to focus on my blog.

Hope you all have a great week!

Current weight 156.6 (finally saw a loss again)

Friday, March 29, 2013

Friday Fitness- Skin Care


While number 13 is definitely geared towards the site it came from... I like numbers 1-12... great tips!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Week 34

Still dealing with the flu.  Finally got some antibiotics and cough syrup on Thursday so hoping that I can kick it the next few days.

Also on some anti-anxiety meds since thursday... so far the one I take in the morning is just making me tired... super tired.  The night time one is doing great... have slept better the last few weeks than I have in months.

We shall see.

Not much else to report.

Weight on Sunday was 157.4

Friday, March 22, 2013

Friday Fitness- 67 Ways

This is a great list from greatist.com (http://greatist.com/health/tips-lose-weight/)

1. Get the blues
“I got the blues” may conjure up memories of those macaroni and cheese commercials from the ‘90s, but we’re talking about blue dishware. The color blue can act as an appetite suppressant because it has the least appealing contrast to most food. Research says to avoid plates that match the food served on them (like white plates and fettuccini Alfredo), because there is less of a contrast, which may prompt us to eat more. A small but potentially useful trick!
2. Eat snacks!
Skipping out on snack time won’t necessarily lead to weight loss, since low calorie consumption can actually slow metabolism [1]. Eating less than three times a day may benefit those who are obese, but research shows skipping meals throughout the day and eating one large meal at night can lead to some undesirable outcomes (like delayed insulin response) which may increase the risk of diabetes [2] [3]. Instead of forgoing breakfast or lunch, stick to a few meals a day with healthy snacks in between.
3. Peruse the perimeter
Next time you need groceries, circle the perimeter of the store before going in. This isn’t a way to stalk out your prey, but actually a tactic to load up on the healthy stuff first. The edges of grocery stores generally house fresh produce, meat, and fish, while the inner aisles hold more pre-packaged, processed foods. Browsing the perimeter can help control how many unwanted additives are in the grocery basket.
4. Stock the fridge
Make an effort to fill the fridge with healthy produce and proteins (from perusing the perimeter!). Keep lots of fresh fruit and veggies on hand. And for when the fruit basket goes barren, make sure the freezer is stocked with frozen veggie mixes or berries (grab the bags full of just veggies, not the ones with butter-laden sauces). You may be less apt to order out when you’ve got the makings of a healthy dinner right at home. And the good news is, healthy food doesn’t always have to be pricey.
5. Eat in the A.M.
Skipping breakfast in order to “save your appetite” for dinner probably isn’t a safety shield for late-night noshing [4]. While there’s still debate on how important breakfast really is, not eating until the afternoon may lead to binging later on (ie. four servings of mashed potatoes) [5]. Make sure to stick a reasonably sized breakfast with plenty of protein; we tend to eat the same sized lunch and dinner regardless of how many calories we eat in the morning [6].
6. Get busy in the kitchen
We promise cooking doesn't take long! Restaurants often use larger plates than the ones we have at home, and studies show that increased portion sizes result in increased energy intake, even if there’s a doggy bag involved [7] [8] [9]. Why not start by making these healthy meals in just 12 minutes or less (quesadillas, stir-fry, and burgers, oh my!).
7. Prioritize the pantry
Take a little time out to toss the junk. If you’ve got some favorite not-so-great items you’d like to save as a treat, tuck them in the back of the pantry with healthier items, like whole grain pasta, rice, beans, and nuts up front. We know that just because the cans of tuna and a bag of lentils are right in front doesn’t mean you’ll forget the brownie mix altogether, but it’ll help keep the brownie mix out of sight, out of mind. Just seeing or smelling food can stimulate cravings, and increase hunger (especially true for junk food) [10].
8. Serve "restaurant" style
Instead of lining up the breadbasket, entire casserole, and salad bowl, right on the table, leave food on the kitchen counter (away from reach). When you’ve cleaned your plate, take a breather then decide if you really want those seconds. Changing up the environment, like by leaving food by the stove, can help reduce food intake [11].
9. Use smaller plates
History shows plate sizes have increased over the past millennium [12]. When it’s time to sit down for dinner, choose a size-appropriate plate or bowl. Using a smaller plate (8-10 inches) instead of a tray-like plate (12 inches or more) can make us feel fuller with the same amount of food. How does this magic trick work? The brain may associate the white space with less food, plus smaller plates generally lead to smaller portions [13].
10. Chew slowly
Eating slowly may not fit into a busy workday, but it pays to pace your chewing: the quicker we eat, the less time the body has to register fullness [14] [15] [16]. So slow down, and take a second to savor.
11. Deep Freeze
Once meal prep is over, serve yourself a reasonable portion, then package up the rest and stash it in the fridge or freezer for a later date. When the food is out of sight, studies show you’ll be less likely to reach for a second helping [10] [18].
12. Wait before grabbing seconds
The quicker we shovel down a meal, the less time we give our bodies to register fullness [19]. Since it takes about 20 minutes for the brain to get the message that dinner’s been served, it’s best to go for a walk or play cards before dishing up seconds or tackling the dessert table.
13. Snack before dining
Grabbing an apple or a small cup of yogurt before meeting friends for dinner can help ensure you’ll eat a reasonable amount of that enormous entrée (rather than overdo it). And be sure to reach for the protein — research shows that an afternoon snack of Greek yogurt can lead to reduced hunger, increased fullness, and less eating come dinner time [20].
14. Turn off the tube
Eating while watching television is linked to poor food choices and overeating [21]. Getting sucked into the latest episode of Snooki and JWoww can bring on mindless eating and it can be easy to lose track of just how many chips we’ve just thrown down the hatch. It’s not just the mindlessness of watching televsion that’ll get us. Commercials for unhealthy foods and drinks may increase our desire for low-nutrient junk, fast food, and sugary beverages.
15. Turn your back on temptation
The closer we’re situated to a food that’s in our line of vision, chances are the more we’ll actually eat of it [22]. If we face away from food that might tempt us when we’re not all that hungry (like an office candy bowl), we may be more likely to listen to cues from our gut rather than our eyes.
16. Hands off
When snack time hits, our brains can be pretty unreliable. It’s tempting to reach for a bag of chips, but instead, grab a handful (or measure out the serving size) then seal the bag up and put it away. Odds are, you’ll be more mindful of how much you’re polishing off when you see it right in front of you. And next time there’s a between-meal tummy rumble, try one of these healthy, satisfying 100-calorie snacks.
17. Pack the protein
Protein can help promote a healthy weight because high protein diets are associated with greater satiety, plus it’s important for healthy muscle growth [23]. Animal sources aren’t the only option — try alternatives like quinoa, tempeh, and lentils.
18. Fill up on fiber
Eating more vegetables and other high-fiber items like legumes can help keep us fuller, longer [24] [25]. Look for at least five grams or more of the stuff per serving. Snack on some of our favorite high-fiber picks like stuffed baked apples or jazzed up oats.
19. Make room for (healthy) fats
Cutting butter and oil can slash calories, and it’s easy to swap in foods like applesauce, avocado, banana, or flax for baking. But, it's important to remember that we still need fat in our diets as a source of energy and to absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. Plus it helps us feel full.  Get healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats from avocadoes, olive oil, nuts, coconuts, seeds, and fish [26]. Bonus tip: Combining fat with fiber has been shown to increase fat’s power to make us feel full [27].
20. Steer clear of simple carbs
Simple carbs are the white stuff — white bread, most pastries, refined sugars (like in soda). What makes it so simple? These foods provide energy, but lack the same  nutrients (vitamins, minerals, and fiber) as complex carbohydrates [28]. The body also breaks simple carbs down quickly, spikes blood sugar (insulin), and leaves your tummy might rumbling sooner than you imagined [29]. Choose whole grains instead, which may reduce potentially dangerous excess abdominal fat buildup (which can lead to diabetes) [30]. Switch to whole-wheat pasta or whole grain bread, or try grains like brown rice, quinoa, or millet.
21. Sneak in the veggies
Bumping up vegetable consumption has long been recognized as a way to protect against obesity [31]. Add veggies to an omelet to cut down on cheese, use them in baked goods, and pasta dishes (Bonus: Try zucchini ribbons, or spaghetti squash instead). Pump pureed veggies, like pumpkin, into oatmeal or casseroles. Adding a little vegetable action into a meal or snack will increase fiber levels, which helps make us fuller, faster [32].
22. Ditch added sugar
A spoonful of sugar allegedly helps the medicine go down, but adding it to food may increase the risk for cardiovascular disease and obesity [33] [34]. Stick to sugar that comes in its natural form (in fruits, veggies, and whole grains) and scrap that morning-coffee-spoonful [35].
23. Make subs
No, we don’t mean the sandwich. We mean easy recipe substitutions. Simple swaps — like Greek yogurt for sour cream, prunes for butter, or an Americano for a latte — can cut calories and sugar. Even a grilled cheese can get a healthy revamp by making a few smart subs.
24. Cook smart
Even healthy food can become not so great when it’s been dropped into a fryer. Instead, pan fry or pop a dish in the oven. Use non-stick spray to sauté foods, or rub oil onto a pan with a paper towel for a light coating. You can even whip up a batch of healthier chips.
25. Heat it up with cayenne
Cayenne pepper, the bright red spice, can not only boost metabolism, but can also cut cravings for fatty, sweet, or salty foods [36] [37]. Some studies even suggest that the hot stuff can increase fat oxidation, meaning the body can better use fat as fuel [38] [39]. Sprinkle some on scrambled eggs, or spice up a stir-fry with a little hot sauce.
26. Chew gum
Popping a piece of sugar free gum won’t necessarily curb your appetite. But, chewing a 5-calorie stick can keep the mouth busy when cooking up a meal, or socializing amongst a sea of hor d’ouevres at a party. While the long term effects of gum chewing on weight loss are minimal, studies show it can lower cravings for sweet and salty snacks, and decrease hunger between meals [40] [41].
27. Go straw-less
... with fruit, that is. Juices (which are often far from 100 percent fruit) provide some vitamins, but without the same fiber and phytonutrients as a real piece of fruit. Let’s take an apple for instance. An 8-oz. glass of apple juice has double the sugar and less than one-tenth the fiber of a medium apple.
28. Cave in to cravings
We love this tip. Cravings are OK! Acknowledge those cravings instead of pushing them away completely (which may lead to blowing it later). Caving into a craving, as long as it’s in moderation (try on of these healthier ways to satisfy a sweet tooth) can actually help curb desire. Forbidding a food may only make it more attractive. Still want more of that chocolate cake after a couple of bites? Try thinking of your favorite activity — dancing in the rain, getting a massage, playing with a puppy. Research shows that engaging in imagery can reduce the intensity of food cravings [42].
29. Bag it up
Sometimes we’d rather not admit it, but let’s face it — restaurant meal portions are generally heftier than what we cook at home [8]. Make a conscious decision to bag up half of the meal before taking the first bite. The added benefit? You’ve got a doggie-bag lunch for tomorrow!

30. Sip Green Tea
Drinking green tea is one of the most common tips for shedding a few pounds, and for good reason — green tea is known for its ability to metabolize fat [44] [45]. And in combination with resistance training, green tea increases the potential for fat loss [46]. Add a squeeze of lemon for a little flavor and to amp up antioxidant affects [47].
31. Gulp H2O
Kick the diet beverages and vitamin enhanced money traps to the curb and reach for good ‘ole H2O instead. Drinking water helps people feel full, and as a result, consume fewer calories [48] [49]. Drinking water also significantly elevates resting energy expenditure (basically the number of calories we’d burn if we sat around all day) and lower water intake is associated with obesity [50] [51].
32. Sip before noshing
Pregaming a meal with a glass of water has been linked with more weight loss than cutting calories alone [52]. Take some mid-set breaks and guzzle a little water between bites too to give the brain time to register fullness [53].
33. Cut back on liquid cals
Milk and cookies, orange juice and French toast, wine and cheese — some foods seemingly require a liquid counterpart. But, it’s easy to pour on the pounds by chugging soda, juice, alcohol, and even milk on the reg [54].  Sugar sweetened beverages are associated with increased body fat and blood pressure [55].
34. Water it down
When you’ve simply got to have a swig of juice with that morning bowl of oatmeal, try watering it down. While it may sound entirely unappealing, gradually adding more water to less juice will keep some of the flavor without all the sugar and calories. Added incentive: Increasing water intake in place of sugar-sweetened beverages or fruit juices is associated with lower long-term weight gain [56].
35. Choose tall and thin
So we know we said to cut back on the juice and soda, but when you’ve got a hankering from some morning orange juice, reach for a tall thin glass, not a short squatty one. While it may sound like you’re discriminating against your glasses, research shows that people pour less liquid into tall narrow glasses than into their vertically challenged counterparts, meaning we’ll ultimately (probably) drink less in one sitting. This is especially helpful when drinking alcohol [57].
36. Banish the booze
We probably don’t have to tell you that partying like an undergrad may pack on a few pounds. And you’ve likely heard the phrase “drink in moderation.” The point is, alcohol houses a lot of sneaky calories and it has the ability to inhibit eating decisions (mmm, greasy pizza) later on in the night. Even after you’ve sobered up, alcohol can have negative impacts on strength and may leave you lagging in the weight room days later [58] [59].
37. Brush those pearly whites
After dinner, go ahead and brush your teeth. Getting minty fresh breath not only has the obvious oral health benefits, but can also keep you from mindlessly snacking while watching a pre-bed TV show. Not a bad idea to hit up the floss, too. Once both deeds are done, we may be more inclined to keep our mouths clean before bed.
38. Set realistic goals
It’s easy, especially come New Year’s resolution season, to set some pretty unrealistic goals about weight loss (fit into skinny jeans in three days!) [60]. Since impractical goals can slow down long-term weight-loss, it’s important to address those goals before making any health and fitness changes [61].
39. Portion patrol
Practicing portion control is one of the easiest, most reliable ways to lose weight, but it’s not an easy task [62] [63]. Portion distortion is ever present, but it may help to use portion visuals, for instance — a serving of chicken (3 ounces) is roughly the size of a deck of cards [64].
40. Stay Positive
Many of us demonize certain foods, and even punish ourselves for certain indulgences. Instead, positive messages like “I can control my eating” or “I’m proud that I ate responsibly today” can reframe our relationship with food. Research shows that positive expectations are also associated with weight loss [65].
41. Think on it
How satiated we feel a few hours after we eat depends not on how much we actually scarfed down but on how much we think we ate. It pays to pay attention to what we eat... it’s actually okay to eat with our eyes [66].
42. Meditate
Emotional eating — essentially eating to make ourselves feel better (often when we’re sad or anxious) — can interfere with weight loss goals [67]. But meditation — using techniques like muscle relaxation and achieving self focus — can help binge eaters become aware of how they turn to food to deal with emotions [68]. Check out these 10 ways to meditate.
43. Reel off mantras
Sometimes we just need a little fire under our tushies to get motivated. If you’d rather forgo the literal bonfire, try out some motivational mantras. Hang up an inspirational poster, write it on a sticky note at work, or scribble it on your roommate’s forehead when she’s sleeping as a reminder of your health and fitness goals. Added plus: Mantras don’t cost a thing!
44. De-stress
A lot of stress can trigger increased eating and cravings, especially for sugary carbohydrates [69] [70]. If pressure at work or a family burden has got you feeling overwhelmed, try out one of these ways to reduce stress before pawing at that donut.
45. Add, don’t subtract
Instead of fixating on cutting out cookies, cake, pizza, and all that heavy cream in your morning coffee, focus instead on adding healthy foods to your menu. Ditching all the “bad” stuff can be a daunting task, one that’s easier to stick to by focusing on one habit at a time (science says it takes anywhere from 18-254 days to form a habit). Add in as many healthy habits as you’d like — drink more water, stock up on fresh fruits and veggies — and slowly wean off of the not-so-good-for-you goodies.
46. One habit at a time
There’s an idea that focusing on less helps us achieve more. Changing a habit is tough, but trying to tackle a whole handful may seem impossible. Instead, concentrate on changing one behavior at a time. Start small and make clear guidelines for a set habit. For example, if you’d like to increase veggie intake, decide to eat three different vegetables each day, or 1 cup with each meal. And remember, small changes can lead to gradual weight loss [71] [72].
47. Envision the goal
Time spent visualizing what you would look and feel like with a few less pounds, can help acknowledge the health and fitness changes necessary for successful weight loss. Research suggests that imagining achieving an exercise goal — like running a 5k, or increasing weights for your next workout — can actually enhance performance [73].
48. Think big picture
So you’ve “banned” chocolate cake, but decided to go for just a small taste. Instead you polished off a full slice. It’s so easy to go totally overboard on an old habit. Instead of blowing it if you’ve slipped up on a new goal, think of the big picture. Focus on the change rather than what’s being eliminated (either a “bad” food, or a bad habit).  Live in the moment to successfully make new healthy habits.
49. Sleep smart
Sleep can not only reduce stress, help us heal faster, and prevent depression, it can also help shave off some pounds because sleep loss is linked to changes in appetite and the metabolism of glucose (sugar in the blood) [74]. Moral of the story: Sleep is associated with less weight gain [75] [76]. Take a look at our guide to sleep positions to optimize those hours spent tucked under the sheets. And try other solutions for extra Zzs like turning off electronics in the bedroom and avoiding large meals late at night [77] [78].
50. Get social
Check out online communities (like on Facebook, Twitter, or other forums) that provide support and encouragement. One study showed that overweight adults who listened to weight-loss podcasts and used twitter in tandem with a diet and physical activity monitoring app lost more weight than those who did not go social [79]Sharing progress and setbacks on social media platforms can help users feel accountable for their goals.
51. Jot it down
If using fancy apps seems too daunting, research suggests there’s still merit to the old pen and paper. Monitoring our food intake with a food diary can help to lose and maintain weight [80]. In fact people who stick to food diaries are more likely to lose weight than those who don’t [81] [82]. Recording each bite helps us be aware of not only the foods we eat, but when, and how much we eat them [83].
52. Use an app a day
A new study in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that using a mobile device was more effective in helping people lose weight than tracking diets on paper [84]Apps like Fitocracy, MyFitnessPal, and StrongLIfts help users track daily activity, food intake, and gamify weight loss by awarding points for workouts. Tracking with the help of apps may help us regulate our behavior and be mindful of our health and fitness choices.
53. Get trackin’
Writing stuff down may be helpful, but it’s tough to accurately gauge how much we move every day (and not just on the treadmill). Invest in an on-body device like the BodyMedia trackers or the Nike+ FuelBand to monitor energy burn. Or invest in a pedometer to track daily steps. Studies show that individuals who walk more tend to be thinner than those who walk less, and pedometer-based walking programs result in weight loss [85] [86].
54. Point and Shoot
We can write down what we eat, but when we look back a week later we may have a tough time visualizing exactly what a meal looked like. A quicker, and perhaps more telling, alternative is to take photos of each meal. A small study showed that photographic food diaries could alter attitudes and behaviors associated with food choices more likely than written diaries [87]. Grab a camera and get snapping!
55. Pump up the jam
Pack your playlist with upbeat tunes. Research shows music that has 180 beats per minute — like, say, "Hey Ya" by OutKast — will naturally prompt a quicker pace [88]. Plus, music serves as a distraction, which can help take attention off a grueling gym sesh.
56. Avoid injuries
Right when you’re all gung-ho about hitting the gym and getting fit, there’s nothing worse than a pulled hammy or pesky shin splints. Read up on how to avoid the most common yoga injuries (often from over-stretching and misalignment), and running injuries (like stress fractures, pulled muscles, and blisters) to make sure you’re in tip-top shape to get in shape. Make sure to get in a good warm-up, too. Studies show we perform our best and better avoid injury after warming up [89] [90].
57. Choose Free Weights
We’ve already praised strength training, but it gets even better when you set yourself free. And by that, we mean step off the leg-press and start squatting with a pair of dumbbells. Working out with free weights can activate muscles more effectively, and as we’ve learned, muscle can torch calories [91] [92].
58. Get functional
Functional exercise has been shown to increase strength and balance and reduce risk of injury all while working multiple muscle groups at the same time [93]. All that movement promotes muscle gain, which can increase metabolism, which can over time help shed fat [94]. Added bonus: Functional exercises can help make real life tasks, like hauling groceries up the stairs, a lot easier.
59. Swig some caffeine
Getting a morning jolt from java may be a part of your daily routine, but sipping some coffee before a workout can actually boost endurance during exercise [95] [96]. How’s it work? Caffeine slows glycogen depletion (the starch our bodies turn to for energy during exercise) by encouraging the body to use fat for fuel first [97].
60. Let go of limitations
Getting a good workout in isn’t limited to a gym or track, use your bodyweight or build a home gym to get that sweat on.
61. Partner up
A new study suggests we perform better on aerobic tasks like running and cycling when exercising with a partner [98] [99]. Hitting the gym with a friend, coworker, or family member can also increase accountability, so grab a buddy and try out some of our favorite partner exercises like medicine ball lunge-to-chest passes, and reach-and-touch planks.
62. Don’t rely on the monitor
Gym machine monitors (like on a treadmill or elliptical) may not be so reliable. They sometimes display higher calorie burn, and we may overcompensate and eat too much.
63. Strength Train
Pumping iron not only gives us sexy muscles, but can boost resting metabolism (that means burning more calories outside the gym) plus improve mood and confidence [100] [101] [102] [103]. Lifting a little weight can also help us sleep, another factor in effective weight loss [104]. If we haven’t convinced you to take to the dumbbells quite yet, there’s also this: Strength training takes just a couple weeks to see results and reep the benefits!
64. HIIT it
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) combines periods of intense effort with periods of moderate-to-low effort. What’s so great about it? Interval training burns more calories and boosts metabolism significantly longer than a steady workout of even longer length [105] [106]. Added bonus: Interval training gets more done in less time.
65. Get hot in bed
Working up a sweat in bed can burn more than 144 calories in just a half an hour. Having sex also reduces blood pressure and overall stress levels (and stress can lead to weight gain) [107]. Need we say more?
66. Stand up
It may sound ludacris to peel your tush from a desk chair at work, but sitting all day has been linked to obesity, poor posture, and chromic pain [108]. Try a sit-stand workstation to switch things up and burn some more calories.
67. Step on it
A simple phrase for losing weight is to move more and eat less. The secret here is that moving doesn’t just mean hitting the track or going to the gym. Make the conscious decision to get more steps into the day by taking the stairs, having a walking meeting, or parking the car far away from the grocery store entrance.




Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Wednesday Words

You are so much more than the size of your jeans!

It isn't about being skinny... its about being healthy!

Monday, March 18, 2013

MMM- Week 32

No exercising at all this past week....Was still getting over food posioning and then this past week I had a bout of the flu... the body aches were unbearable!

Took the nanny kids to Museum of Transportation on Thursday- which meant a lot of walking.  Then took the husband and one of our nephews to the zoo on Friday- which meant a lot of walking.... dropped almost 2 pounds those two days!  Of course felt sick and miserable and had some salty food over the weekend so gained some of it back.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Fitness Friday- Running

Want to start running but don't know where to begin?  Try this 12 week program.  Shoot to do the exercise as much as possible during the week but at least 3-4 times. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Wednesday Words

You have complete control over how you feel... so choose to feel happiness!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Week 32- MMM

TOM kicked my butt this week.  Gained 2 pounds overnight.  Ick.  Finally lost those 2 pounds, but still up 5 from my lowest.  Did work out some this week. And got some walks with my hubby in.  Looking forward to moving forward this week.

Weight Sunday was 159.2

Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Wednesday Words

A little behind with my quotes... this one was supposed to be during Valentines week... but I wanted to share it anyway. 

Another Valentine's one... I just love Dr. Seuss quotes :-)

Monday, March 04, 2013

MMM- Week 31



I started a new challenge with Chad on the 1st... of course we were both sick so we really didn't start working out till Sunday the 3rd!  Hoping that having him workout with me will help us both stay on track.  I will let you know how it goes.

My most recent weigh in was Sunday March 3, and I was not happy with it at all.  I am at 158.8... :-(  4 pounds up from my lowest.  I did, however, finish the GI medicine I was on last saturday, so I am hoping that the water I have been retaining will leave over the next few days.  I am supposed to start a new one today, but it is over 200 dollars, so i won't be getting it.  I will be calling the GI doc to get something else.

My MIL and I made breakfasts for the month on Saturday, and they are all healthy.  So at least if I do nothing else right during the day fitness/health wise... at least I had a good breakfast.

My bodybugg free subscription expired so now I will be paying each month, we shall see how long I keep it.  I told Chad I will only renew it if I get back to using it... I haven't really the past few months.

That's all for now.

Monday, February 25, 2013

March News

Due to some current craziness in my life... including working 40-50 hours every week, I have decided to take a slight break for a bit.  What this means is that I won't be posting much at all the next few weeks.  I will still do the follow segments:

My Metamorphosis Monday- but only when I have the time.  Since I put my current weight in, I can't really do this post ahead of time, so i will try and get at least one a month in, but it probably won't be every week.  However, Chad and I are starting a program on March 1st together, so hopefully I will start seeing some better numbers soon.

Wednesday Words- I can do these ahead of time, so these will continue

Friday Fitness- Again I can do these ahead of time, so these will continue.

I am not sure how long this lite blogging will last... Hoping I can use the time I was spending on the blog to get some projects done.  Those projects will be featured in future posts when I return, and I won't have them hanging on my to do list so it should free up some time.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Little behind

I know I am a little behind in posts, had a crazy work month.  Will be back up and running shortly.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Fitness Friday-Exercise Myths

Good Stuff!  Remember you can always find out where I get my Fitness Friday infographics and pictures from, by checking my pinterest board.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentine's ideas

Here are the activities I did with my nanny kids for valentines.....

http://krokotak.com/2012/03/tchestit-8-mart/ (the page is not in English... so I posted the picture to help)

http://www.freehomeschooldeals.com/free-valentines-day-coloring-worksheets-55-pages/ (lots of coloring pages for V-day!)

I also got some Foam hearts from the dollar store... the kids love doing foam crafts.  I bought some foam stickers to add to our sticker box.  I also got some flat stickers.

I can't remember if I got them from Target dollar bins or from Dollar Tree, but I found the valentine's banners that you can color... I got one for each boy to do.

To see more Valentine's ideas, check out my pinterest board!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Wednesday Words

I have to remind myself of this, especially right now that I am gaining again.  I am changing my life... it it an ongoing process.

And like any other relationship... it takes constant upkeep!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Letter B activities

I finished the letter B with my nanny kids on Friday.  Had some good ideas.  Besides worksheets we visited the Bakery, made foam bookmarks, had some fun with bubbles (the day I planned the bubbles, it snowed so we didn't get to go outside, we did some on the screened in porch and then I brought them back on a warmer day!).  We also made a bee that looked like the letter B. 

Towards the end of the lessons, I brought a bunch of balloons and that was a lot of fun.  Even my cat enjoyed that activity!  When Chad and I were blowing them up the night before I planned to take them, we were just throwing them on the floor after we blew them up... Prince thought it was Christmas... wish I had gotten a photo!

The end of the unit prize was these foam balls that the kids loved.

Here are the worksheets we did....
http://www.tlsbooks.com/bisforboat.pdf (B is for Boat)
http://totallytots.blogspot.com/2009/11/now-i-know-my-abcs-b-is-for-bumblebee.html (B is for Bee)
 http://www.education.com/slideshow/color-animal-alphabet/ (color the butterfly)
http://www.homeschoolcreations.net/2012/10/printables-from-a-to-z-from-homeschool-creations/ (dot pages)
http://www.first-school.ws/theme/alphaletter/b.htm (lots from here)

Monday, February 11, 2013

MMM- week 28

SW: 156
BF: 32.8
M: 33

Having a very frustrating month.  This week I saw some high numbers that I have not seen since I started this journey.  At one point this week I was at 159!!  I think we found out why thought.  I am taking this new medicine for my IBS.  Well it makes me go, think "I took a colonoscopy prep drink" go.  So I think it is causing me to retain water and my body is not letting go of anything else during the day except when I go, because of what the medicine is doing to me.  I plan to give it one more week and then call my doctor.  besides the weight gain, I don't like the massive cramps it gives me for 6 hours after I take it.

Other than that, not much to report.  I did really good meeting my burn goals this week.  Did ok with my food... I stayed under calories, but it wasn't the healthiest options.

Worked out for the first time in a long time on Sunday.  It felt ok.  I am glad I worked out, but I had gotten a deep tissue massage earlier in the day and so I was already sore from that, the workout made it worse. 

EW:
BF:
M:

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Wednesday Words


In honor of Valentine's Day here are some love quotes for you.  

Monday, February 04, 2013

MMM- week 27

SW: 156.4
BF: 32.6
M:33.9

Well another not so good week.  Not much activity and bad food choices.  Especially over the weekend- i think Chad and I were both having a bad day- we ended up getting Chinese and little ceasers this weekend... then sunday evening was a super bowl party at my sisters.

Changing some things up this month... not going to plan workouts on days I work.  I think that is why I wasn't doing well... On days I worked I would be too tired and so i wouldn't... then feel quilty and just think the whole week was screwed.  So instead of workouts I am just going to try and be more active during the day and maybe take a walk around the block when I come home.

Then do my workouts on the days I am off.  This may slow my progress some, but hoping it will help me get over a mental hurdle I am dealing with to make more progress in the long run.   Going to see how I am doing at the end of the month- and if I need to make some adjustments next months I will.  Thinking I will need to adjust my calorie intake some to compensate, but we shall see.

EW:156
BF:32.8
M33

Friday, February 01, 2013

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Journals/Magazines

I have mentioned before that I read quite alot of magazines.  Usually when I get 4 or 5, I spend one evening (usually while catching up on some shows) going through them.  I tear out articles I like, along with recipes I want to try.  The recipes go into the recipe binder (or will when that project gets worked on, right now they go in a drawer).

The articles end up in my journals.  I use just plain notebooks for my journals. 

I put ticket stubs to events we do, along with some notes.

I also put in the articles I clip out of the magazines.  I usually write something about the article too, to help me remember why I kept the article.
I have completed three of these notebooks so far (I just started last year).  My fourth is almost full, and whenever I get around to work on them again I have enough articles clipped out to probably fill a fifth.When they get full they go on top of the big file cabinet where our photo albums are.  I frequently pull them out to look through them again, to see if there is any projects I want to tackle. 

I like the fact that instead of 1,000s of magazines laying around, I only have a few notebooks.  And its always fun to go back and look over what I put in.



How do you organize the articles and magazines you get?

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Coupon Binder



I just use a plain white binder to store all my coupons.  I bought some page protectors and also some of those plastic sleeves to hold baseball cards. In the back i keep my groupon and living social deals.

When I do the grocery list it is super easy to flip through the pages to see if there is any I can use that trip.