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Transformation Tuesday 10/20

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Categories: Health & Nutrition,Weight Loss Journey Progress

Good morning! It’s time again for an update on my weight loss progress. I’ve posted a photo wearing my traditional Transformation Tuesday uniform of my denim shorts and Guinness shirt (Oh my, what am I going to do when it gets really cold?).

 

10-20

 

Since my last weigh-in and since I’ve cut sugar and sweeteners from my diet completely (13 days ago), the scale has recorded a 4 pound loss. At first glance that can be disappointing, and quite honestly, the scale has been up and down the past two weeks. That means that my weight has been recorded between 316 and 320, a total of 14 pounds lost since the beginning of this journey (which has been side tracked quite a bit). I’m not doing any formal exercise (something I intend to remedy), but since eating like this, I’ve had a lot more energy and so I am on my feet and busy much more than I had been.

The telling aspect for me is how my clothes are fitting, in particular, my pants. I have one pair of jeans that I normally have to wiggle my way into and then lie on the bed, suck in my breath and push down my fat stomach in order to zip up. This week, however, it was just a matter of sucking in my stomach and pulling the zipper up (while standing!). The denim shorts I’m wearing in the photo above can now just be pulled up over my hips and belly without even undoing the button or zipper.

I’m not seeing much of a change in my liver roll, that fatty roll that started right beneath my boobs and is migrating downward. But the roll beneath that, my stomach roll, is definitely disappearing, and when I compare this photo to the last photo, it’s much less perceptible in the new one.

Over all, I feel better than I look, and so I will not discredit my progress. I have more energy, I’m sleeping better, I have no more regular sugar/carb cravings and I’m getting a lot more nutrients in my body with the raw greens and veggies and moderate protein and organic grass-fed dairy.

On occasion I make cakes for different events and I’ve got two coming up this weekend. I started this week on some aspects of the cakes, such as the modeling chocolate decorations, and I was surprised to find how easy it was to avoid consuming any of it. The desire is just gone and the smell of the sugary sweets is a little sickening to me.

I feel like any time now, things will start moving faster as I maintain consistency. As lame as it sounds, 13 days of anything is quite rare for me. They say it only takes 21 days to form a habit. I really want to see this out.

Thanks for checking in and I hope you have a wonderful week and achieve all your goals!


On the Road Again (to Health)

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , , , , , Categories: Weight Loss Journey Progress

Happy Tuesday, everyone. How goes it?

So I returned later from my trip than I had anticipated. I miss my family. That is a strange thing for me to say, as when I did live in the same state as my extended family, we hardly saw each other. We’re all married, have our own responsibilities and struggles and finding time to get together has always been difficult. I’ve had to keep reminding myself this since I’ve returned to North Carolina. We were there for a wedding and while it was a great experience convening with my fam, it’s just not typical.

As expected, I did drink wine and eat cake. I had allowed myself that, but it was not nearly as much as I had assumed I would. Maybe it was the fact that I had gone entirely wine and sugar free the week prior, but the sweetness of the cake was overwhelming to an unpleasant degree and the wine just didn’t do it for me. So I mostly imbibed water. Lots of it.

Returning last week, I immediately spiraled into a bit of depression. As mentioned before, I was just missing the loud laughter and chaos of my family and coping with the cloudy gloom that had settled here in NC – quite a contrast from the gorgeous weather offered in Ohio for the weekend of the wedding and following days (again, not typical). I’m slowly coming out of it.

I’m not going to post a picture today, as I’m carrying an extra 5 pounds of water and so I’ve nothing to celebrate. Every time I take that 7 hour drive to Ohio from North Carolina, my body swells up. My legs take on a tree-trunk-like appearance and my feet feel like they’re going to burst out of my shoes. This was likely another reason why I didn’t indulge in the sugar and alcohol I had been looking forward to. It only lasted a couple days, but then there was the drive back home to contend with, and for some reason it seemed worse and has lasted longer than the drive up.

I do have an interesting anecdote from my trip. In one of my first blog posts I think I mentioned how my family views obesity. My mother mentioned to me the other day that had she helped Charles Manson himself dispose of his murder victims, her father (my grandfather) would forgive her if only she was trim and fit while doing it. It sounds silly, but in my family everyone has been ingrained that being overweight is the ultimate sin. Unfortunately for my mother, only myself and one of my sisters have the curse of being overweight.

I had not seen my grandfather in a little over a year. I was shocked at his appearance at the wedding. He is tiny and frail and his dementia has progressed to the point where he barely remembers anyone anymore. I approached him to say hello and give him a hug. His lip curled up in his signature sneer and he said to me, “You’ve gained a little weight haven’t you?” With my ears and face burning from the humiliation of about six of my cousins witnessing the encounter, I acknowledged that I had.

A couple days later I stopped by my grandparents’ home to visit. I literally fielded 2 ½ hours of questions from my grandfather about my weight. “Have you always been so heavy?” “Is your mother that heavy?” “Do you have plans to slim down?” and so on. In his earlier years before the dementia settled in, he never would have voiced his concerns. Not to me anyway. They would usually come by way of my grandmother, to my mother, to myself. But he can’t help it, I know. He’s just a shell of who he once was: The man who used to make me crisp waffles topped with vanilla ice cream and maple syrup; who always kept a stash of his favorite treat – maple cream sticks – to feed us grandchildren when we would visit; the same man who ran up to the store every time a grandchild visited, to pick up popsicles or soda. I often wonder how my cousins managed to maintain slim figures despite these terrible eating habits, but I digress.

I came home more determined to lose this damned weight, and now that the fog of the post-vacation blues is wearing off, I will get to it. I should mention that I’ve been eating clean since my return. The water weight is just a temporary issue that should resolve itself soon, I’m sure. I haven’t exercised since I’ve been back and I know once I jump back on that, I will get the scale moving again.

And with that, I leave you all until next week. Have a great one!


Transformation Tuesday 8/18 and Photo: I’m Still Here!

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , , , , , , , Categories: Weight Loss Journey Progress

It is with agonizing humility that I return here to pick up where I left off. I realize it’s almost 2 months since my last post, and every tortuous Tuesday that has passed by with my own radio silence has rung out as silent defeat to my ears. I’ve had on and off (mostly off) days/weeks. Sugar-fueled weekends turned into weeks, and the internal rally to get up and move! went largely ignored by my senses, dulled by idleness, wine, chocolate, and angst over the minutia of life.

But I’m nothing if not persistent. I’ve not given up. I’ve renewed my renouncement of my drug and have managed to conquer 3 whole days with no sugar, with Day 4 just hours away from being ass-whooped.

And so it was, with little enthusiasm but a hopeful heart, that this morning I donned my Guinness T-shirt and jean shorts, took a jaunt to the scale and then outside for my Transformation Tuesday photo.

 

4

 

Surprisingly, I’m 10 pounds lighter than when I first started this journey. I’m currently at 320. So that means that I must have managed to rid myself of 3 pounds during the past couple months.  My initial reaction to this photo was incredible disappointment, but then I took a moment to compare all of my progress photos thus far, and I observed something:  My fat rolls are definitely creeping south, drastically so.  So there is either less fat or less water retention buoying those puppies up.  It’s a snail’s pace but beyond my expectations, so I’ll take it!

I started my weight training regime again two days ago (a maneuver that instantaneously improved my sleep quality), and the intention is to continue building muscle whilst managing my eating.

Can I just tell you that I’m headed out of town for a beloved cousin’s wedding this weekend and I’m terrified? I know it’s going to be a wine-and-cake kind of weekend and I will let you know up front that I will be partaking. It’s how we celebrate everything and it’s been so long since I’ve seen my family. And I want to. That’s the bottom line, isn’t it?

Do I have a plan? Yes. Well, sort of. Just jump back on track Monday. I’ve already recruited my husband as my accountability partner, a task he seems to be all too eager to take on (I suppose I’ll forgive him), as well as committed to updating you the following day, Tuesday, August 25, 2015.

So until then, thank you for sticking with me and have an incredible week!


Transformation Tuesday 5/19, No Change, Whiteboards

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , , , , Categories: Weight Loss Journey Progress

Well, it’s Tuesday, that time again. The results are not impressive, let me be honest.

It’s been an insane past week and weekend, as I knew it would be. I had two big cake projects to complete for Saturday and it was stressful. I say this every time I make a cake, but I’m going to say it again. I don’t care if I never see cake again! Of course that will only last a few weeks. We all know I love cake.

Surprisingly, I didn’t eat much cake at all. For the wedding I made a three-tiered cake that included a 12-inch white cake with fresh strawberry butter cream filling and then 9 and 6-inch tiers of dark chocolate cake with hazelnut mocha butter cream filling. The entire thing was covered in vanilla Swiss butter cream. Once we delivered and cut the cake, I tasted a very fine sliver of the vanilla cake.

That same evening, we then delivered a two-tiered white/vanilla cake with the strawberry butter cream filling and then came home and collapsed into bed, but not before I downed an entire bottle of Cab Sav. Ugh. When I woke up the next morning, my legs looked like tree trunks. Also, while I truly didn’t think much about eating all weekend due to the cake mess in my kitchen and stressful deadline, I did grab a veggie pizza one night for convenience and had three slices.

So here it is, Transformation Tuesday and you’re looking for results! So, drum roll please…. No change. None. Not one pound more; not one pound less. I’m relieved. I did manage to get three workouts in last week so the week was not a total loss.

However nonchalant I may seem, I am committed. Yesterday I ate a lot of steamed broccoli and some chicken and finished the evening off with salmon and a nice kale and spinach salad. No wine, and lots of water. I went to the store yesterday and filled my fridge with greens and vegetables and made sure there was no wine in the house to tempt me.

I’m about to go do my workout for the day (obviously the early morning workouts aren’t happening for me) and I have a plate of chicken and steamed veggies waiting for me when I’m finished.

In other news, business for my husband and me has been… busy. We’ve gotten into whiteboard animations through our joint company and I’ve decided to start incorporating the whiteboards into my blog for a more entertaining and engaging feel. I hope you will feel free to give me honest feedback. Until then, my friends, have a wonderful day!


Transformation Tuesday: 3 Pounds Lost!

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , Categories: Weight Loss Journey Progress

It’s a small accomplishment and a surprise considering the fact that I didn’t keep my eating clean this week (after a rough few days I uncorked a bottle of red wine last night, drank a glass and also had some tortilla chips with my guacamole. The salt, sugar and alcohol has me so bloated today, my fingers look like sausages!). I believe the exercise was the real hero and I intend to keep that up.

Sugar is and has always been my crack. In fact, it’s been stated by researchers that a sugar addiction is more difficult to overcome than a drug addiction. It’s little wonder then that sugar has been given so many deceptive names, and continues to confuse even savvy consumers. I’m not sure I would necessarily categorize myself as savvy, but I know when I’m eating sugar. It’s a somewhat conscious overthrow of my will when I break down and eat it. Figuring out why is proving a challenge, as I already suspected it would. How can I overcome something I haven’t yet established?

Honestly, I think I do have clues as to why I’m in this situation. Old traumas and ensuing deep psychological issues have ensured a nice fatty cocoon of protection from having to deal with the stresses of a “normal” everyday life. The problem is, this kind of life brings on its own set of stresses. I tell myself that I would gladly trade one set for the other. So what gives?

While I’m figuring that out, I will keep struggling on this journey. Three pounds is only a start, so I won’t let myself be discouraged over it. As I’ve got a crazy week and weekend ahead of me, I will simply do the best I can until the chaos is over and on Monday I will really dig in my heels and be strict with my eating habits. In the meantime, I will continue to exercise, drink a lot of water and maintain a positive attitude!


5/9 Update Post

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , , , , , Categories: Weight Loss Journey Progress

I didn’t really plan on posting anything until Tuesday, when I will be weighing myself and posting an update picture, but I just found myself in the mood to write.

I’m surprised to say I’m feeling great. Despite a few setbacks this week (all sugar based – more detail below), I’m managing to keep up the workouts, which for me is huge. It’s 9:00 p.m. here and though I’ve not yet worked out today I’m itching to do so and will make sure to squeeze it in before bed.

I’ve been drinking from 48 to 72 ounces of water per day. It’s not quite my gallon (128 ounces) goal, but it’s still more water than I was drinking before. Additionally, despite my insistence that I would NEVER give up my coffee, I’ve just been making myself a cup every morning but not taking more than a sip or two. I’ve had a bit of voice work this week and I find that copious amounts of caffeine tends to dry me out a bit and make recording difficult. The water has been so helpful and I was told that my recordings were better than usual, though I have a sneaking suspicion that might be more due to my positive attitude than anything else.

My diet has been mostly raw vegetables (kale, spinach, peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes); some raw fruits; chicken or beef and the occasional eggs or cooked beans and veggies (My husband made a spicy vegetarian chili).

Alas! My sugar status has not been boast-worthy. Wednesday night my husband was feeling celebratory after a small personal victory which resulted in milkshakes. Mine was peanut butter fudge and I felt it long after. Dairy has never been my friend.

Yesterday I went a bit crazy when I came across plates of cookies and chips at my brother’s house that his wife had set out for everyone. I resisted for an hour but eventually “just one” snowballed into several. I didn’t let it get me down though. I came home, brushed my teeth (a trick that helps me so much), consumed a 24-ounce Mason jar of ice water and made sure to get my workout in.

Against my own judgment I weighed myself last night and was pleasantly surprised. I don’t want to become a slave to numbers, as I understand that the scale is not the final word in fat loss, but since I’m just starting out on this weight loss journey, I’ve decided to pay some attention to the numbers on the scale for a little while. I won’t divulge them today, but Tuesday I will be sure to post them along with a picture.

That’s all I’ve got for you today. I hope you are all having a wonderful weekend!


Good Start Despite Mean Trees

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , , Categories: Weight Loss Journey Progress

Full of enthusiasm for my new weight loss venture – and a bit of guilt over my breakfast of three browned-butter chocolate-chip cookies my daughter had baked the night before – I met my friend Val after work at a nearby park for some good old fashioned walking.  I’m not a big fan of walking in the 80-plus degree weather but since I’ve got a goal now, I figured I’d better suck it up and get my butt moving.
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330 Pounds (With Photo)… And We’re Off!

by Colleen ElizabethTags: , , , , , , , , , , , Categories: Weight Loss Journey Progress

Today is the day I set up my plan for my journey to health.  This will be a challenging task for me, as I am not really an organized person.  I have in the past managed to sit down and map out a very good plan to my goals, but maintaining said schedule or plan is another story.  This is where I most need support.

Before I lay out the plan, let me give you a bit of my nutrition and exercise philosophy.  I will elaborate on these in posts during my journey, but just so you can understand my game here, I will outline them for you.
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