Saturday, April 8, 2017

Losing Weight is Hard

Hi, all!

So, my fitness evaluation needed to be rescheduled for Tuesday. I know it is only a few days away, but I am a little bummed out that I was not able to find out my results. Oh well, that means I have a few more days to work hard. And let me tell you, I have been working incredibly hard. According to my scale at home, I have lost 12.2 pounds in a month. We'll have to see what the scale at the gym says on Tuesday. Either way, I know that I have made progress because I stuck to my nutritional goals 22 out of 32 days. I am sort of ashamed that in March I had 10 days where I either did not count calories, binged, or just went over. Even though I am ashamed of that, it also shows just how hard I worked the other days out of the month. Consistently I saw my weight dropping, that is a fact because on March 7th, I weighed in at 330 pounds and this morning the scale told me 317.8. The results are real.

Losing weight it hard, I will not deny that at all. If it were just an easy thing to do, I would not have topped the scale at 330 pounds, and I would have been able to keep off the 50 pounds I lost before. It is hard, plain and simple. There are days where I do not want to eat healthily, where I would rather just binge on all of my comfort foods. Or have a big bowl of pasta, a whole bag of chips, a huge bowl of ice cream. Or just a bunch of unhealthy but delicious foods from a fast food restaurant. There is nothing wrong with having pasta, chips, ice cream or fast food. Moderation is the key. To be honest, though, there have been days where I have said, 'Screw it,' I'm going to make a big plate of nachos or eat a big bowl of ice cream. Not to mention that some days I do not want to work out and sometimes I don't. This week I worked out all seven days because I wanted to. But other weeks I only work out 4 or 5 times, sometimes less than that because I just don't have the energy for it. The point is, I'm not perfect 100 percentage of the time. It just so happens that this was an excellent week for me. I ate 3,921 calories under my weekly goal. I worked out for a total of 299 minutes. And had a total calorie burn between food and exercise of 9619. If you don't know, that is 2.75 pounds for the week. Some days in March I did not do well at all, but I still was down 6.2 lbs.

Here's what I want you to get from this long drabble, you don't always have to be perfect! Some days will be bad and some good. Some weeks you will lose 2 pounds, and somewhere you will gain them back. Have more good days than bad. Eat all the foods you love in moderation or find healthier replacements that you love even more. Just stick with it, and the results will come. Slow and steady wins the race.

It is finally the weekend. I am still trying to get used to working again. My job may not be all day at this point but I am still trying to get used to being busier. It will get better when I am in my actual work schedule and not my training schedule. This varying schedule is weird but I will be into my actual schedule within the next few weeks. It will be nice to get my first paycheck on Friday though. My next one will be even better though, so I am excited about May 1st.  

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Random

Hi, all!

How are you all? I'm sorry that I haven't posted for the past 2 weeks. It has been a crazy few weeks, honestly. I have been eating right (for the most part), working out at least 4 days a week, figuring stuff out for school, I was hospitalized for 4 days, and I started a new job yesterday. Needless to say, it has been a crazy month for me.

One of the positive parts of my month is that I have consistently been working out, besides when I was in the hospital. I have 663 exercise minutes from the 7th to the 31st, which is from working out 4 or 5 days a week. That is something I am incredibly proud of because I have not worked out in a long time. It has been a few years since I was working out consistently. The last time I was doing this consistently, I lost 75 pounds. Honestly, though, that seems like forever ago because I gained all that weight back plus 15 more pounds.

When my fiance and I joined the gym and had our fitness evaluations, I was shocked by my numbers. How did I let myself get to 330 pounds with 46.8% body fat? Don't get me wrong, I was incredibly happy to see my lean body mass at 177 pounds but having 149 pounds of body fat was something that I was embarrassed about for sure. There I was sitting in a room with my fiance, who is already in the healthy body fat range and our trainer who is in incredible shape. And then there was me, 330 pounds with 46.8% body fat. I honestly never wanted Zak to know how much I weighed because I am incredibly embarrassed by the fact that the number is so high. But, now he knows and still loves me anyway. And now I am doing something about my weight and body fat percentage. I have been keeping track of my weight, caloric intake and my exercise minutes and calories burned. My next fitness evaluation is on the 7th and I am excited to see what my numbers will be, I'm hoping for a decrease of weight and body fat percentage, and an increase in lean body mass. I know that I have lost weight, at least that is what my scale at home says. According to that scale, I have lost around 6 pounds.

I have had a love-hate relationship with my nutrition over the past few weeks. There were 6 days where I binged and did not even track all of my calories. That number is definitely not one that can stay that high. Also, when I was in the hospital, typically I was eating more than I realized and went over my calories. I had 4 days of that but now that I am home again, I am able to correct my eating patterns. Honestly, I am surprised by the amount of my weight loss because of these days.

I've gone on long enough though. I cannot wait to share my results on the 7th. Until next time!

~Sara~

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Catching Up

Hi, all!

It has been over a year since I last wrote a post. I am ashamed of myself, and a ton of things have happened since January 18, 2016. The person I am today is not who I was during that post. In fact, I cannot even believe how different my life is now compared to then.

Let me take you back to January 2016. I was living in Seattle, in my second quarter of grad school, and single. Life seemed fairly decent back then, there was not much I had to worry about besides school. I had amazing friends out in Seattle that I met at school and life was good. Then on May 31st I met and started dating this guy named Zak. Little did I know then that he would turn my world upside down, in positive and negative ways. He was volunteering at Safeco Field, working in one of the concession stands with a bunch of other guys. Some of my classmates and I just so happened to be going to a Mariner's game to reconnect before summer classes would begin. The thing is, Zak and I met online, so I had never seen him before in person, but that day in June we finally met. During his break, we met up and were able to spend a few minutes together before he had to get back to work. It was incredible to finally meet him after texting and daily phone conversations for a few weeks.

Zak and I moved in together about a month after we started dating. We had a whirlwind romance for the first few months. We were doing everything together, except when I had a few weeks of summer classes. Honestly, we were both very much in love, and we knew that we had a future together. Zak as had some problems with substances in the past but he had worked through all of that and been clean for over 9 months, so I did not mind. We all have baggage, and his just happened to be substances. Unfortunately, in July he had a relapse, and that threw a damper in things a little, but we worked through it. In August I brought him home to meet my family, we spent two weeks with them before we had to head back to Seattle so I could begin my second year of grad school.

After we had got back, I started my second year of grad school and began interning at a Residential Treatment Facility for Pregnant and Parenting Woman who have had substance use problems. It was definitely hard work because I was working with a challenging population. And it definitely impacted my relationship with Zak, I had school full-time (2 days/week) and internship part-time (3 days/week). It was hard for us. We went from spending all of our time together to very little time together. And around this time I developed Generalized Anxiety Disorder. Also around this time, Zak relapsed again because he was trying to cope with all of the changes that were happening in our life. That relapse lasted for probably 3-4 weeks, and it drained most of our finances.

Then in November, I began having some health problems. I went into the emergency room and found out that I had strep throat, a kidney infection, urinary tract infection, and gallstones. So I saw my family doctor because I was in lots of pain because of the gallstones and he was no help what so ever. Then two days before Thanksgiving, Zak took me into the emergency room again and it was decided that they wanted to admit me to the hospital and that I will need gallbladder surgery. On November 23, I had my gallbladder removed. My mom flew up to be with Zak and me, and to help me recover from my surgery. It was an incredible blessing to be able to spend Thanksgiving with my mom and Zak.

December rolled around, and I went back to internship and school after recovering from my surgery. Then on December 9th, Zak asked me to marry him, and I said yes. So we told our families and friends, and then I began planning the wedding. We went back to Wisconsin for Christmas, we were only able to be there for 4 days, but I was incredibly thankful to spend that time with my family. The day before we had to head back to Seattle, my mom and I went wedding dress shopping. Amazingly enough, we found my dress! We also found my veil, the bridesmaid dresses, flower girl dresses, my bouquet, and my bridesmaid bouquets. It was truly a fantastic trip.

After getting back to Seattle, real life began for us again. I went back to internship, and then in January, my classes started up again. Unfortunately, at the end of January Zak relapsed again. At that point, my anxiety was through the roof, and I was experiencing anxiety and panic attacks sometimes. Not only that, we were fighting a lot. We were trying so hard to get Zak's substance use under control again. This is the man I love, my fiance, and I did not want to see him destroy his life like that, not to mention our life together. But on February 21st I broke, in every sense of the word. This is hard for me to admit, but I had a nervous breakdown. I called my parents and told them that I needed to come home because I could not live in Seattle any longer. My anxiety and panic disorders had gotten so bad that I had to drop out of school and internship and move home. Zak had a few things to take care of out in Washington, so he moved here at the beginning of March.

We turned a new leaf now. Wisconsin and especially my hometown is a different way of life. Seattle was big, loud, and fast-paced. My hometown is the exact opposite of that, it is small, quiet, and slower. Not to mention that Midwestern people are nicer all around. For me, it is refreshing to be back home, and for Zak, it is a lot different, but he feels at home here already. The midwest can do that to a person though and I am glad that's how it is for him. My anxiety and panic disorders are still here, but now I have a larger support system surrounding me, and I am getting help. Honestly, sometimes you just need your mom to take care of you, and that is how I'm feeling right now. I am incredibly thankful to have such a loving, caring, and nurturing mother. And Zak is great through all of this too. This is a new thing for him, and I can be difficult to deal with when I am in the midst of an anxiety or panic attack. Honestly, I will never understand why he is still with me through all of this because this is not what he signed up for when we started dating. Either way, I am thankful that he is still by my side.

All of that being said, I have not stuck to a fitness or nutritional regimen since before Zak, and I started dating. Honestly, I have not done much exercise or eating right in a few years. Needless to say, I gained all of the weight back that I had lost and gained 15 more pounds. On March 6th Zak and I joined a gym and started working out the next day. Our gym offers some great things in our membership costs, including fitness evaluations every 30 days and program development. We had our fitness evaluation on the 8th, and my numbers were a tough pill to swallow. I weighed in at a staggering 330 pounds, with a body fat percentage of 46.8. During this evaluation, I learned how many pounds of fat I have on my body and how much lean body mass I possess. As of the 8th, I have 149 pounds of body fat and 177 pounds of lean body mass. Honestly, the lean body mass number surprised me. The trainer I worked with told me that if I wanted to be 22% body fat, if I did not gain any lean body mass (which is unlikely), then my goal weight should be 226 pounds! I was astounded by that number. When I first began my weight loss journey in 2011, my goal weight was 160 pounds because that was in the "healthy" range for my height. I had no clue that my goal weight could not be attained, and in fact, I should be at a lot higher weight than that. At this point, I just cut 66 pounds out of the weight I need to lose. Do not get me wrong, I still need to lose 104 pounds, but that is a lot more attainable than 170 pounds.

I have been tracking my food intake and fitness since the 7th, and I am proud of what I have done so far. My calorie goal to lose 1 pound/week is 2400, and I have been at of under that goal every day besides yesterday. And according to my scale at home,  on Monday I weighed in at 324.6 pounds. That is a loss of 5.4 lbs in 5 days. I have also logged 261 fitness minutes since the 7th, and that's including 3 off days from exercise. Honestly, I cannot wait for my next fitness evaluation next month to see how I have progressed.

Yesterday was an incredibly rough day for me, my anxiety was high from the moment I woke up in the morning. Zak and I didn't go to the gym, and in the afternoon I had a small binge. I did not track my food that afternoon or evening, but I am hoping that it was not too bad of a binge. Today is a new day, and it is going much better. I have tracked all my food thus far, and Zak and I hit the gym. We did cardio and strength training today. My legs and arms are killing me but I love the burn, it means that I worked my muscles hard and they are repairing themselves so they can grow stronger.

Well, I think that my short novel here will be catch up enough. I am going to try to start blogging more again. Not only will it help keep me accountable to my fitness and nutrition, but I am also hoping that it will help me work through some of my anxiety. Until next time!

~Sara~

Monday, January 18, 2016

Ups and Downs

Hi, all!

Happy Monday! How are you all doing today? I’m doing okay, last week was incredibly busy and filled with many ups and downs. Honestly, I’m really glad that it’s a new week and I get to start fresh. This week my goal is to not eat out at all and eat at or a little below my calorie goal each day. I really need to get my nutrition under control and begin making healthier choices every day.

I began last week by doing quite well, Sunday and Monday my calories were quite low and Tuesday I was about 100 under my goal. At that point, I was feeling good about myself and how well I was doing, but then that changed on Wednesday. I had a long day of class and I talked to my best friend when I got home and then I was feeling sort of hungry. Instead of grabbing one of the snacks I keep in the house for occasions such as this, I went online and ordered a big pizza and a few other things. I ate a little of it that night but saved the rest of it for the next day. On Thursday, I was feeling really down about what I had done the night before and wanted to just throw the food away but I can’t really afford to do that. So, I came up with a plan to eat the food that I had bought but make it fit into my calorie range. That planned worked until the afternoon because I had an incredibly stressful morning and then I let my stress take over and I pigged out on the pizza. That day, I ate 7 slices of large pizza and then I had a few other things in the evening. I honestly don’t know how many calories I ate that day but it happened. Friday I decided to start fresh and I did well, I was about 160 calories under my goal for the day. Saturday came around and I was having a fantastic day, I was ahead on my to-do list, my dinner was in the slow cooker and I was on track to being at or under my calorie goal for the day. Around 4 PM I was starting to get hungry and again, instead of grabbing a snack I ordered some food. I ate more than I needed to again and felt unsatisfied after. At that point, I saw how easily my nutrition was consumed by my stress and boredom, so now I’m trying to focus more on my nutrition and making healthier choices.

The few days that I ate too much led me to gain weight for the week. Yesterday I weighed myself and I wasn’t happy with what I saw. I gained a pound last week because of a few bad choices. Last week I sabotaged myself, which is hard to admit but it’s the truth. This needs to stop, now. I know that I won’t be perfect with my nutrition all the time and sometimes I’ll make unhealthy food choices and that’s okay. The thing that I’m trying to do right now is have more healthy days than unhealthy. When I do have an unhealthy day, I am going to try and not eat so much. I went and got groceries yesterday and I made sure to grab a few different types of snacks, so that if I am craving a certain thing that I can eat a little of it and not binge on it.

Well, this is where I am signing off. I have class tonight and I have a few things to get done this afternoon before I leave. I hope that you all have an amazing week! Until next time!
~Sara~

Thursday, January 7, 2016

2016, New Year, New Me

Hi, all!

Happy Thursday! How are you all? I haven’t written in so long, so I’m not sure if anyone is still listening. My last post was in August, which means it’s been five months. Honestly, though, I haven’t been posting regularly since the end of May/beginning of June. There are a variety of reasons that I haven’t posted in so long, including that grad school has kept me insanely busy and that sometimes things simply were not going well, so I didn’t post. I have definitely had my ups and downs over the past five months, no doubt about it. My winter break just ended and so many times I thought about posting. I had all of these thoughts in my head about what to say, but I never wrote them down. My problem is that I have so much to say and sometimes I don’t know how to articulate those thoughts.
On Monday, I returned to Seattle after spending 3 weeks in Wisconsin with my family for my winter break. It was a wonderful trip, I didn’t realize how much I missed my family until I saw them again, it was definitely bittersweet coming back and having to leave again. After being back with my family for a few weeks, I realize that after I graduate, I may want to return to Wisconsin to work. The time that I have to make this decision is far from now, so I definitely have some time, however, it is something that I will be thinking about a great deal.

Yesterday, I began my second quarter of grad school. It is hard to believe that I’m a quarter closer to being done, only 10 quarters left. I know that my time at SPU will go by quickly and I need to learn as much as I can from my professors and colleagues. It seems like I just started college and here I am with an associate’s degree, bachelor’s degree and working toward my master’s degree, time flies. Honestly, it feels like I just graduated from high school and I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. At the same time, it feels like high school was so long ago, which, depending on your definition of long, it has been. By the end of this school year, I will have been out of high school for 8 years, which is a scary thought. Nevertheless, here I am almost 8 years later, in grad school, with two degrees under my belt already. Life is definitely a journey.    

Now it’s time in this ridiculously long post, to share some of the not so positive things that have happened over the past five months. I wish that I could say that everything in my life is perfect and that I stayed on track with my fitness and nutrition over the past months. Sadly, I need to report the exact opposite. I have not made healthy food choices and I have done a very little exercise. This has caused me to gain back all of the weight that I lost and then some. It is really hard for me to admit this but my weight is up to 321, a new high. I promised myself that I would never see a ‘3’ as the first number of my weight again, but here I am. For a while, I simply stopped caring and let my food cravings take over. I didn’t step on the scale and I avoided looking at my body, besides seeing if my clothing looked okay. Then when I was in Wisconsin, I went to the doctor and I had to step on the scale. I knew that I hadn’t been doing well but I never thought that I would have gained so much weight. When I saw that number on the scale I almost cried because never in my life did I imagine that I would weigh 321 pounds. At the rate I was going, I was just killing myself slowly.

To be honest, I have been really struggling with my food choices. Food has taken over my life again and it is so hard to try and stop. There have been days where I would try to make healthier food choices and I did for part of the day but then toward the end, I was just so hungry. It goes to show how many calories I had been eating, though, it was a very high number. So, I am now trying to plan out meals that are lower in calories and have healthy ingredients. I am hoping that if I eat lower calories foods I’ll be able to eat more of them and that will trick my body into not being so hungry. For Christmas, my mom gave me her old crock pot, so I’m searching for a lot of healthy recipes. I know that doing some meal planning will help me each day and also will help me when I am grocery shopping. I’m hoping that it will help me stop buying all these foods that I don’t need for my meals.
I have written out some weekly, monthly and yearly goals, so that is a step in the right direction. At this point, I’m not going to share my specific goals because some of them are quite personal, but I will share my major goals. I need to simply make healthier food choices, reduce my calories and start working out more again. My most important goal is to break the unhealthy habits that I have created. If I don’t break these habits, my health will deteriorate. My health and life are more important and precious than the foods I desire.

Well, there you have it, I have shared everything that I need to. Life is about to get busy again because my classes have started up again, but I promise that I will start posting on a regular basis. I don’t know how many people read my posts but I hope that my honesty can help at least one person continue on with their journey. If nothing else, sharing what I am going through helps to keep me accountable and that is definitely something that I need. This is a long and hard journey and I need to keep myself going strong along the way. I hope that you all are having an absolutely wonderful beginning to your new year! This New Year is a clean slate for each of us and we can start over. Honestly, I believe that each day is a new beginning and we can become whoever we wish to be, all it takes is a little hard work and perseverance. We can do this! I promise that I’ll post again soon. Until next time!


~Sara~ 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

New Month

Hi, all!

Happy Sunday! How are you all doing today? Look at me, blogging two days in a row! It must be a record. I love being able to write again, even though I may not have a ton to talk about, it is still a good release of my emotions. Sometimes I don't even share anything of consequence but emotionally it just releases everything. This is one of the things that I love about writing, you can just let everything go, especially when I'm not worried about other people judging my writing. That's how I'm feeling right now, yes people could judge my writing, but I don't really care. This blog was started for me, to let out my feelings and talk about anything and everything. Go ahead people, judge away, this blog is for personal use and not meant to perfect my writing skills.

Anyways, sorry for my long rant about writing. It is going to be another hot day here in Seattle, close to 90 again. Let me tell you, my apartment has been ridiculously hot without an air conditioner. So much for not needing to bring my air conditioner along because Seattle doesn't get that hot. Oh well, it's supposed to cool down a bit after today. It'll be in the mid to upper 70's for the rest of the week, so that'll be wonderful. I can't wait for the cooler temperatures to get here! Either way, Seattle is amazing and I'll take the heat while it's here.

I can't believe that it's already August, this year is flying by thus far. Since it is August, that means it is my birthday month, it's actually my birthday this week. Friday will mark my 25th birthday, which is crazy. How am I going to be 25 already?!? This life is flying by and I can't wait what else is in store for me.

Well, I'm off. I'm going to try and beat the heat this afternoon. I hope that you all have an amazing afternoon and evening. Enjoy the new week. Until next time!

~Sara~

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Finally an Update

Hi, all!

Happy Saturday! How are you all doing on this beautiful sunny and warm day? I'm doing alright, trying to beat the heat and just wrap my mind around life right now. Things have been crazy in my life over the past weeks, I was busy with moving, unpacking, finding a job and just living. But I'm still alive and finally able to post an update.

There is so much I want to talk about today and I don't even know where to begin. I guess before I do anything else, I should apologize for not  posting in almost 7 weeks. As I said, life has been crazy. Back on July 10th, my parents and I left Wisconsin and took a 30+ hour road trip to Seattle and then on the 13th I moved into my new apartment out in Seattle. Ever since then I've been unpacking, exploring and interviewing for jobs. I'm happy to announce that I did get hired at a business close to my apartment and I'm starting on the 10th! Then I'm starting classes in about a month and a half.

I adore Seattle, it is such an amazing place. Although I haven't done a lot yet, I feel like this place is home and that I'm finally where I'm meant to be. Whenever I leave Seattle and then drive back, I get chills when I see it, it is truly a beautiful place. This city is where I'm meant to be and I'm so blessed to be here. I hope that I am able to explore it more and see everything that this wonderful place has to offer. An amazing thing about Seattle is that it is so diverse, whether it's with race, sexual orientation, religion and a thousand other things. That being said, the different types of couples that I've seen and experienced here have been amazing and very eye opening. When I was living in Wisconsin I couldn't get a date to save my life, which was okay because I wasn't really interested in anyone from there anyways. However, here in Seattle, it's very different. I've been here for almost three weeks and I've been on a few dates and one is even slowly turning into more than just a date.

My nutrition has been way off, even before I moved, I'm really hoping that once I get into my routine, things will get better. My fitness has been off as well, I haven't been doing anything in regards to fitness. I don't have much room to do cardio right now, but I really should be using my free weights. Amazingly enough, I have stayed right around the same weight since my last post.

Well, I have a special someone who's going to be coming over to hang out soon. So I should end this here. I hope everyone has a wonderful afternoon and evening. Until next time!

~Sara~