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Friday, July 30, 2010

Correction

Correction to my Wednesday post about exercise.

I have to burn my calories AFTER I eat them to lose weight.  I can't burn extra calories and earn extra food.
I must always work to get it off after I eat.  This helps motivate me to eat just my portions and that's it.

If I don't stick to my portion sizes, I have to work extra hard later in the gym.  Boo!

Friday Extras

Hey everyone - As promised, here is a typical daily menu for myself.   Most days I have Kashi GoLean for breakfast, but this menu includes a stop at Dunkin Donuts.  I did that for two reasons.  One, I want people to see that you can still eat out when trying to lose weight.  Two, the day I wrote this up, I was running late and didn't get to eat my cereal.  I was writing this up for a friend who wanted to know what I was eating that day.  This was very truthful to what I had that particular day.  (June 16, 2010)

1 cup 2% milk 122 calories (over-estimated, I have just under a cup)
1/4 cup of prunes 102 calories (approximate, I hope an over-estimate)
1 Dunkin Donuts Wake up wrap with bacon 200 calories
1 large unsweetened iced tea, 9.6 calories
Breakfast total is 433.6 calories

1 serving of FAGE plain greek yogurt 2% 150 calories
2 teaspoons of cinnamon 11.8 calories (over-estimated, I use less)
1 tablespoon of honey 63.8 calories  (over-estimated, I use less)
AM Snack total is 225.6 calories

4.5 ounces of grilled chicken breast 210.5 calories
1.5 item cucumber 58.7 calories (over-estimated, it's a big cucumber)
1.5 tablespoons of italian dressing (marinade on chicken, I'm guessing on amount) 103 calories
Lunch total is 372.2 calories

1/3 cup of dried pineapple 130 calories
Afternoon Snack total is 130 calories

1 Cup of Kashi Golean cereal is 160 calories
1/2 cup of milk, 2% is 61 calories
1 tablespoon of Skippy Natural Peanut Butter is 90 calories
Dinner total is 311 calories

End of day total is 1472.4 calories.
You might notice that my biggest meal is breakfast and then my meals and snacks get smaller from there.
If anyone wants another example of a menu with as many details, just let me know.

Today I am having:
Breakfast, KashiGoLean Cereal, Milk, prunes
Morning Snack, Fage 2% yogurt with blueberries
Lunch, Arnolds Sandwich Thins, Skippy Natural Peanut Butter, Salad greens, cucumber, 2oz Cheddar Cheese, 2 tablespoons of italian dressing
Afternoon Snack, dried cranberries, Laughing Cow Cheese Wedge, Mary's Gone Crackers
Dinner - I'm not sure yet, since I will be on the road.  It will likely be another Peanut Butter Sandwich.
If anyone wants calorie totals, let me know.

What else have I done that has helped me lose weight?

I'm a visual person, I like the rewarding feeling of seeing something accomplished. When you are losing weight, it isn't all that easy to see the changes.  For example, when I look in the mirror, I don't think I look any different than I did 30 pounds ago.  I'm not saying that I think I am fat.  What I am saying is that 30 pounds ago I would look in the mirror and think "not bad!  Looking good!".   I must have really great self-esteem.  It really wasn't until I looked at a picture of myself that I saw the extra weight.    So what can you do for a visual?  Some people keep track with a chart or write down their measurements.  I did two things.
One:  We have a Nintendo Wii Fit.  I started doing a daily Body Test and tracked my weight there.  It will keep track of your weight on a graph.  I have this going back almost two years now.  It is SO cool to see where my weight used to be (really high! In the "obese" section) and to see where it is now.  (Overweight!  Whoo hoo!  Whoever knew I would be excited to be overweight? hahaha!)
Two:  Remember when you were a kid in school and they had charts where they would add a sticker (usually a star) for a job well done on something?  I made myself something equivalent at work.  It's a post-it note.  I made little boxes on it.  From 175 pounds down to 130 pounds.  And as I lost each pound, I would check off a box.  If I gained or maintained, I didn't get to check any more boxes, I had to wait to "earn" another box.
I don't know if that would work for everyone, but it works great for me!  I look at it almost every day and I can see how far I have come.  Right now I have 30 boxes checked off.  I'm working on that 31st.

I also make a new post-it with each weight goal I want to get to.  For example, I currently have a post it stuck to my pen cup that says "140, You Can Do It!".

What else do I do to lose weight?  Well, everything that common sense and doctor's tell you to do.
I stopped watching one of my favorite shows, The Biggest Loser, because it was on so late.  I go to bed early and try my best to get 8 hours of sleep a night.   I drink a LOT of water.  Keep an aluminum bottle (plastic tastes gross if it has been sitting for too long) everywhere you go to keep drinking water.  I have a water bottle at work, one for the gym and class and another I keep in my bedroom.   Water, water, water.  I also avoid drinking my calories.  Soda, juice (just eat the fruit!), and alcohol.  These are just empty calories and I almost always get bloated or gain after having these items.  My one exception is milk.  I drink unsweetened tea like it's going out of business.  Seriously...I need to cut down on that addiction.
(Try Dunkin Donuts Iced tea, no sugar, with lemon OR McDonalds unsweetened tea, with lemon.) 
Be sure to add the lemon, it cuts the bitterness of the tea. 
I have also started brewing my own iced tea at home, want tips?  Let me know!  There is a secret to cutting the bitter taste of tea while brewing, you don't need lemons.

I also eat loads of vegetables and I fill up on fiber.  In fact, I probably get about 60% more than the daily fiber recommendations.  This is because I have some digestive issues, I won't get into it here. :)

One last thing.  I want to repeat that I am NOT a doctor.  I am not a trainer.  I am in no way authorized to help anyone with weight loss.  I simply wanted to share the information on what I have done that has helped me.   Please consult with a doctor about what your ideal weight should be.  BMI charts don't always get the whole picture.

For example, according to the BMI charts, my ideal weight should be 112 pounds.  I would need to lose an additional 33 pounds to weigh that much.  That is a little crazy, there wouldn't be anything left to me!  I have discussed my weight with my doctor and the agreed upon weight is 130 pounds.  This still puts me in the overweight category for most charts, however, my doctor has requested that I do not go below that weight without consulting a doctor first.  I think that is reasonable.  Find your own reasonable weight.

The nice thing about humans?  We are all unique and are meant to be different.  We are meant to be different sizes, shapes, colors, heights, etc.  One "standard" doesn't work for all.   Also remember that the female body is meant to have some additional fat to it.  It helps our hormones and bodies function properly.

Be healthy.  Be happy.  Don't get obsessed.  (I need to remind myself of that on occasion.)

And...if Dani Can Do it.....so can you!  You CAN DO IT!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

The BodyBugg

If you have seen me lately, you might have noticed something on my arm. I get a lot of questions about it. Most people think it's a pedometer or a heart monitor. It's actually something called The BodyBugg.

Have you ever watched The Biggest Loser?   The contestants on that show wear this on their arms.  It helps calculate approximately how many calories you are burning.  When I first heard of this tool, I thought HOW AWESOME!   Then I looked up the price, and it just seemed so expensive.  I did loads of research online to see if people were happy with it and I also tried to find other products that I could use instead that were cheaper.   I didn't end up getting anything because nothing seemed to work like the BodyBugg.
(I'll get to how it works in just a minute)

This past Christmas I convinced Anthony's family and my own family to do a Secret Santa gift exchange, which meant we were all getting just one present.  My mom had me and guess what she got me?  The BodyBugg!   Now...she was really really worried about how I would react to getting this as a gift.  (Nobody wants a diet book or a gift to a diet plan or exercise equipment as a gift....)  In the past my mom and I have clashed about my weight.  It's always been a sensitive subject, however she knew that I had really wanted a BodyBugg and that I didn't want to invest the money in it...so it was really a great gift.   And she was so happy that when I opened my gift I completely freaked out and got VERY excited.  I was very happy to receive this gift.   I understood where my mom was coming from and she felt like she was taking a big chance with this gift....but she got it perfect!  I loved (and still do!) my christmas present. THANK YOU MOM!!! :)

On December 27, 2009 I got on the scale and weighed in at 175 pounds, my heaviest weight ever.  I logged onto the BodyBugg website and I started my plan.   I couldn't wait to see how many calories I burned!
I soon learned that I burned a lot less than I thought I did.  In fact, I hardly burned any at all.  No wonder I wasn't losing weight.

So how does it work?  It measures your body temperature, perspiration and movement.   It isn't waterproof so you can't wear it swimming and it doesn't accurately calculate your calories when you are on a bike (they are working on improving that for future products.) but other than that, it works great!  I wear it 24/7.  I take it off for about an hour a day while I shower and get a chance to clean the bugg itself.  (I also need to let my skin breathe...I have a great tan line on my arm from this thing..haha).

In order to get the "full" experience of the BodyBugg there is an online subscription that you pay for.  (6 months comes free with the bugg, I paid for an additional six months)  The online tools include loads of tips and advice (which you can also get for free without joining, just check out the website) and logs for tracking food, weight, measurements.  The online program also has example meals and recipes as well.  I honestly only really use the food log portion to keep track of my calories.  It's very simple to use and most of the foods I eat are already in their system.  (that is because I eat real foods, like fruits and veggies, so I don't need to program in my "packaged" foods as much.)

So it's really as simple as this.  Log your food.  Upload your calorie burn.  Do the math, lose weight!
(Did you know that you need to burn more than 3500 calories than you are eating per week to lose just one pound?)

The BodyBugg also has an optional product you can buy that has a "read-out" (like a watch) that will show you the information that your bugg is tracking.  It shows activity level, steps, and calorie burn.  If you were not paying for the subscription online, you could just use this readout and keep track everyday on a spreadsheet.  I haven't attempted to try this yet, but I probably will next year when my current subscription runs out.

Let me know your questions about the BodyBugg.  It isn't cheap, but it's an incredibly helpful tool.  Do you need it to lose weight?  No.  Did it help me?  Yes.  It was the final tool I needed to begin losing weight.

Did you know that we constantly underestimate our caloric intake and we overestimate our calorie burn?  Having the BodyBugg took all the guessing out of the equation.  It definitely helped me.  Through the years I have consulted numerous nutritionists, doctors, trainers and books.  I have read articles online and tried so many different diets.  I have educated myself to the point of I might as well become a trainer or health counselor myself...that is how deep my education has gone.  But in that process I have learned what works, what doesn't work.  What is healthy and what isn't healthy?    I had all the pieces, except the last one.

The last piece was "how does my body burn the calories anyway?" and I discovered I don't burn all that much.  Now I work my butt off.  I love looking at my read out and seeing how far I have come each day. 

If you have any questions about the BodyBugg, leave me a comment!

Tomorrow's post will be all the "extras".  I will write about all of the other little things I am doing and I will post a typical daily menu for myself.

By the way, this morning....my scale said 144.8!  Whoo hoo! Finally got past 145!


Helpful Links:
The BodyBugg
The Biggest Loser

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Exercise....yuck!

Guess what everyone's least favorite part of losing weight is?

Most people can handle limiting their foods.

Most people don't like to sweat. And who does like to sweat? It's gross and sticky and smelly and YUCK!

BUT....if you want to lose weight and you want to be healthy, you are going to have to move and you are going to have to sweat.

Story Time:
Last November I was watching VH1's Top 100 Celebrity Hottest Bodies. (I think that is what the show was called.) A few of the celebrities (including Matt Damon) got into top shape by doing boxing workouts. What they were doing looked like fun. Jump rope, hit stuff, etc. Anthony and I have a Nintendo Wii and my favorite game to play on the Wii is boxing. So I thought "maybe I will enjoy a boxing workout."
I went online and researched boxing workout classes in my area. I called a few places and only one had an actual person answer the phone.
Her name was Lorie and the place was called MJA Martial Arts. Lorie explained to me over the phone that the first class was free and that I should just come on down and check it out. I convinced my cousin Colleen to go with me and we drove down the following Monday to check it out. We met the owner, Mike, and he asked us what our goals were. I honestly told him about the Wii boxing and the VH1 show I was watching and I told him I wanted to lose 25 pounds. Colleen said she would like to be more confident. He told us that he could help us with both our goals and then he put us through a class.

We loved the class and signed up. I also signed up for some additional kickboxing classes. And let me tell you....I am dripping with sweat when I leave these classes. I am exhausted and I feel amazing at the end of each class.

I really don't think I could be where I am today without the classes I took at this martial arts studio. My strength has increased, my flexibility has increased, my cardiovascular has increased and I noticed something else....I can now RUN.

Yep, Run. I hate running. Especially if I am overweight...it just plain hurts! But the more weight I lose, the easier it becomes. And the fastest way to lose weight? Start running! Running is the way I burn the most calories.

I started off slowly. At first I would walk for an hour with occasional jogging. Then my jogging got faster. Then my walking got faster. Soon I was jogging more than walking. The next thing I knew I was sprinting!

I can now walk/jog/run just over 5 miles in an hour. When I started, I think I was somewhere around 2.5 miles in one hour. So start slow, you can do it!

Other things to know about exercise:
1. Join a class! When other people or an instructor look forward to seeing you, you are more than likely to go back.
2. Pick a class doing something you enjoy! This is so important. You will not exercise if you don't like what you are doing. Get creative, just make sure it is active. Join a bike club or a karate class or swim lessons (everyone can improve their swimming!) or join a softball league.
3. Always always always warm up and cool down with lots of stretching! In my boxing class and kickboxing classes we spend 10 minutes warming up and stretching at the beginning of class and 10 minutes cooling down and stretching again at the end of class. This will decrease muscle soreness and increase your flexibility as well.
4. Hire a trainer to teach you how to exercise properly. You don't want to get hurt! I have worked with 2 different trainers to learn how to lift weights and get exercise tips.
5. Find the "right" time of day for you to exercise. For example: I used to exercise first thing in the morning. I liked getting it out of the way and I had more time in the morning. This resulted in two things. One, I was EXTRA hungry ALL day long! It was very difficult NOT to eat extra. Two, I didn't lose any weight. Not even a single pound. I ended up switching to working out at night when I began the kickboxing/boxing classes and it just worked better with my schedule. I discovered this worked better for me. I didn't eat "extra" during the day and through trial and error I learned that in order for me to lose weight, I need to burn my calories AFTER I eat them.

I once burned a crazy amount of calories, over 3000. (I was helping a friend move) I then went out for dinner and had whatever I wanted including dessert and beer. It all fit into my calorie limit for the day...my plan was to maintain. I ended up putting on MORE weight. Ugh. It took me a week to recover from that.

I do boxing on Monday nights. On Tuesdays and Wednesdays I get on the treadmill and do my walk/jog/run for five miles each night. On Thursdays I go to kickboxing.
Friday is my night off. Saturday is kickboxing in the morning and then Sunday is another day off. Some weeks I will only give myself one day off or if I am feeling too sore, I will give myself 3 days off.

It's very important to give yourself days off to let your body rest and recover, especially if you are working out very hard. (And you should be if you want to lose weight!)

So get out there and MOVE and SWEAT! And just remember not to eat a bunch of junk and ruin what you just worked so hard for. After I workout in the evenings, I do not eat for the rest of the night. My one exception will be a little bit of protein after my workout. Either a small piece of cheese or a small piece of beef jerky (one ounce sizes for cheese or beef jerky) or maybe a 1/2 cup of milk. This helps with recovery.

Link to where I go for boxing, check out the pictures, you might see me back in January (ugly "before" pictures) in boxing class:
MJA Martial Arts

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Food and Diet

I have a confession to make. I'm not really on a diet. I eat whatever I want. The catch here, is that I eat whatever I WANT. See, I don't always want junk food. But I do like pizza and peanut butter cups. And Ben and Jerry's ice cream.

So now you are probably wondering, how are you losing weight if you are eating whatever you want? Well, I limit my calories. We are back to the same thing I discussed yesterday. You just need to burn more calories than you eat in order to lose weight. If you want to maintain, burn the same amount you eat. If you want to gain, then eat more than you burn. It's very simple. So make sure you calculate that peanut butter cup or slice of pizza into your calorie count for the day. (I do, and I still lose weight. I promise. I have eaten peanut butter cups and still lost weight.)

So I track my food and I watch my calories. I don't worry about fat or carbs or anything else. Is it possible on some days I might have more fat, (or carbs, or sodium, or sugar) yes it is. But it's all about balance.
See, most of the time, the food that I WANT is healthy. This is because of my health counselor, Tracy Harrison. I met her last year and she convinced me that there was a happier way to live my life and that I could find happiness, health, better sleep and better moods simply by eating. Honestly, I thought she was nuts. Food was my ENEMY. Seriously, go read some of my old posts from 2005 and 2006. Food was the problem. I was allergic to it and I was tempted to eat lots of it, and I did. How was food going to solve my problems?

Through her classes and some one-on-one counseling, Tracy reintroduced me to food. She helped me reprogram my brain into eating properly. Did you know that we are all born with the ability to limit our calorie intake and to naturally crave healthy foods? It is society and the food manufacturers (and sometimes pregnant women eating junk) that reprograms the human brain into eating food that isn't actually real food. With Tracy's help I learned how to listen to my body. To know the difference between when I was actually hungry and when I just wanted to eat "just because". She helped reintroduce me to real foods and also to fat.

Yep, you need to eat fat. Our body needs three things to survive. Fat, carbs, and protein. So if you go on a fat-free diet or a carb-free diet, you will temporarily lose weight, but you are not doing yourself any long-term favors. Besides, if you are like me, and you tried those diets, were you really happy doing it?

The first big shocker for me when I was working with Tracy was this:
She had me start keeping a food journal so that she could see what I was eating. She didn't want me to try anything new, just do what I had been doing. So I kept track of everything. When she reviewed it, she said to me: "Did you know that you have an almost fat-free diet?" And I responded (beaming, I was so proud!) "Yes, I do!" And I was very proud of myself. That's when she told me that I needed fat to survive. I was floored. Hadn't I been told my whole life by doctors, media, health articles, Mom's and friends to avoid fat?

Then Tracy explained something to me. She said that the human body needs fat to survive and that if I wasn't giving my body any fat, it was going to hold on to what I had with all it's might because I had convinced my body that there was a famine, which is why there was no fat available to it. It made sense, but I was still not convinced. She slowly convinced me to add fat into my diet. We started small, with baby steps. Like going from skim milk to 2% (she wanted me to start with whole, but I was still giving her the "you are nuts" look.) She also had me make sure I was eating a little fat and protein with every meal. (Adding cheese to my salad, putting real butter on a roll.) It was important that I have fat with every carb. She also introduced me to healthy fats like advocados and olive oil.

And then the most shocking thing happened. I started losing weight. :)

She also taught me to eat real food, fruits and vegetables and to avoid any packaged or processed items. I started eating foods that were natural and organic. I went on tours of Whole Foods and found myself opening up to a whole new world of food.

And guess what else happened? I started sleeping better. I was no longer lying awake at night. My mood swings got WAY better. (You can ask anyone who has had to live with me...I am very moody. But now it's better. Still moody...not so much mood swingy...hehe) But probably the thing that changed the most....was how much I LOVE EATING! I really enjoy food. Every bite, every flavor is so amazing. I can't even describe how good a cucumber is. Or guacamole. Or fish.
Yep, I said fish.
Ever try smoked salmon? WOW! That stuff is really GOOD!

Once I stopped eating "fake" foods (processed, packaged items, foods with additives and preservatives) my taste buds changed. I was now able to actually taste foods I had never tasted before. (and when I went back to trying my old foods, suddenly, they were gross. Goldfish crackers will never be the same...yech! Soda? gross! And have you ever really tasted M&M's? They do not taste like chocolate.)

To sum this all up (this post is getting long!) I eat natural foods 95% of the time. I try to eat foods that are organic as long as I can afford them. I try to get my fruits and veggies from local farms and I eat a LOT of fruits and vegetables. I eat VERY little packaged items.
I track all of my food to limit my calories so that I will burn more than I eat.
Breakfast is my biggest (calorie wise) meal of the day. If I only have a small breakfast, I make sure that my mid-morning snack makes up for it.
I eat 5-6 times a day. The smallest amount of food I eat is my last meal, dinner, which is at least 4 hours before I go to bed.
I don't eat anything at night. Probably 75-80% of my calories are consumed before 4pm. Don't snack at night and it will help you lose weight!
(This was hard for me to do, I had to re-program my body into eating at the beginning of the day) I always make sure my breakfast includes some fat to get the motor running and burning off the fat I already have.
And one last thing. I don't include a lot of variety in my foods. While I am in the process of trying to lose weight and I am tracking calories, it's just easier to eat the same things. I know they are healthy and I know the calorie amount, so I eat probably the same 6-10 meals all the time. Sound boring? Maybe. I do mix it up once in a while, but the majority of the time, I stick to what works.
And so far it's working. 30 pounds down. 10 or 15 more to go!

I have included links to Tracy's website and two books that I enjoyed reading. If you have questions or comments, leave them via the comments link. If someone wants an example of a typical daily menu, let me know, I will post that as well.

Recommended information:
YOU on a Diet
In Defense Of Food
Eating on Purpose

Tomorrow's post will be about exercise. In other words, getting off your butt and sweating. A LOT. :)

Monday, July 26, 2010

Diet & Exercise

So far I have lost 30 pounds. I get loads of compliments on how I look (yay!) and it feels great. I have also realized that I now weigh about what I weighed in college, which is awesome. I still want to lose another 10-15 pounds though and I seem to be stuck on a plateau. I'm hoping that will change in the next few weeks.

This week, all my posts will be dedicated to how I have lost the 30 pounds. Loads of people have asked me "How did you do it?".

Well, there isn't a secret. No special diet. No pill. No specific workout plan.
The short answer is diet and exercise. I lost this weight the old-fashioned way.

Weight loss comes down to this, burn more calories than you consume and you will lose weight. I'm serious, this really works. A few good sources of information that will help you out are available on the web. I'm a big fan of the Biggest Loser website and Jillian Michael's website. (If you want links, let me know and leave a note in the comments)

Now, there are definitely other things that helped me along the way. There definitely is a much much much longer answer than diet and exercise. I'm going to do my best this week to go over everything I have learned that worked for me. Again, I want to emphasize, this is stuff that works FOR ME. It might not work for you. Each of our bodies are very special individual machines. We work almost the same way but with little things that make us unique.

You need to find what works for YOU. Over the past 10 years I have worked with different doctors, nutritionists, physical trainers, health counselors, and other instructors. I have tried almost every diet out there. Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, South Beach, Lean Cuisine, the grapefruit diet, etc etc etc. It took me a long time to find what works for me. It may take you a while as well.

I hope that my posts this week inspire you to find what works for you to live a healthy lifestyle. I also want to take this moment to ask that you set yourself realistic weight goals. Not every body is supposed to be super skinny. Jillian Michaels even addresses this issue on her website. She says that the human body will naturally want an additional 10 pounds on our body than what we think we should have. She calls the final 10 pounds vanity pounds. She said we want to lose those last 10 pounds to get our "ideal" body weight because that is what society and fashion models has taught us our bodies should look like.

Unless you are a professional athlete, your body is supposed to be a little "soft".
Even Jillian says that her weight will fluctuate 10 pounds depending upon her schedule.

So...get ready. This week I will share all of my "secrets" to my success. These really aren't secrets though....just good old fashioned diet (eat healthy natural foods!) and exercise (get off your butt and sweat!).

Tuesday - Food and Diet (eww...who wants a diet? I don't.)
Wednesday - Exercise (let's get sweaty!)
Thursday - The BodyBugg
Friday - topic to be determined.

And one more note. I am not a doctor. I am not a nutritionist or any other kind of "professional". Do not start any diet or exercise plan without first consulting with your health professional yada yada yada. I'm only sharing what I did, not giving instructions to anyone else on what to do. You are on your own. Which is how we all feel anyway. :)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Friday Fun!

Happy Friday everyone!

Here are some optical illusions to distract you today.
Some of them are really crazy!

I'm still trying to figure out the spinning cat one.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Because so many asked....

No, I did not eat the donut. :)

My co-worker was nice enough to eat the last one that was still left this morning so that I wouldn't be tempted. I didn't tell him that day-old donuts don't tempt me anyway.

After you have worked with Dunkin Donuts, that donut better be less than 4 hours old.

And I just realized that I am so ingrained by the Dunkin Donuts brand that I have been spelling donut wrong.

It should be doughnut.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I will not eat the donut. I will not eat the donut.

I will not eat the donut.

Someone at work decided to be really nice and give us some extra donuts from a promotion here at work. They are cake donuts with pink frosting. And they look really yummy. So far I have been able to resist.

This week is going to be one of those weeks when I talk about food.
A lot.

I'm hovering at 145 pounds. And it's always 145.something. Usually 145.5 or 145.7.
I just want to see 145.0 Or 144.something. I tend to get obsessed with food and I can just tell, it's going to be one of those weeks. I apologize in advance to anyone I drive crazy. :)

So I am trying to be EXTRA good this week with my eating and exercise. It won't be easy. I find that the more weight I lose, the easier running becomes. But guess what else I noticed? My calorie burn is getting lower and lower. The less I weigh, the more I need to work to burn more calories. Very frustrating.

How do I know this? I wear something called the BodyBugg. My parent's bought it for me for Christmas last year and it has been crucial in helping me lose weight. Basically it tracks your calories that you have burned.

I was thinking that next week I will do a new post every day. And every day I will discuss a new topic, but all will be related to my weight loss and how I did it. I hope that someone else will find the information entertaining, informative and helpful. This way I can tell everyone about the BodyBugg, my health counselor, what I do for exercise and my all natural (mostly) diet.

Just remember, YOU need to do it. What works for me, might not work for you.

In the meantime, I will not eat the donut. I will not eat the donut.

I did ask a co-worker if it was worth it. He said "ummm...." so then I asked if it was one of the top 5 best donuts he has ever had and he said "No, definitely not, you might not like the frosting."

So....I will not eat the donut. I will not eat the donut. I will not eat the donut.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

I feel fat.

Ok, the emphasis here is on the word FEEL. I weigh exactly the same as last week. :)

When I was heavier (and let's face it, even now) and I heard a skinnier person than me complain about being "fat" I got really upset. Because THEY were not fat. *I* was fat. They didn't know the meaning of fat!

So here I am, I have lost almost 30 pounds and for whatever reason, yesterday especially, I feel fat. How is this?! This is bizarre! How can I feel this way?

Honestly, I think it's just bloating or eating too much sodium or something. But I now understand why a skinny person might say "I'm fat." I don't think it will do any good to correct them and say "no, you just feel fat, you are not fat."

But I might correct it in my head so I that I don't feel tempted to reach out and smack them. If you have never weighed close to 170 pounds (or over) as a woman, you have never been fat. You likely never will be "fat".

But it's totally okay to FEEL fat. Now that I have gotten "skinny" myself and I feel like I did 30 pounds ago. Ugh.

Honestly, today I feel better. The scale says the same, but I feel better today. I had such a tough workout last night at Boxing Class that I am actually shaky today. I slept better than I have in a few weeks which was awesome as well. A good tough workout in the evening always makes me sleep better.

On to a lighter topic! Most people who know me know that I am obsessed with all things Twilight. I read an article today that explained the appeal of Edward Cullen to men so that men can learn from him on how to get women to swoon over them.
The article is really long and if men just want to skip all of the "Why" and head straight to the "do this" portion of the article, just skip to the end.
You can find it here:
What Men Can Learn from Edward Cullen

Friday, July 16, 2010

Please Wear Your Seat Belt.

This is a very serious post before the weekend.
I'm looking forward to this weekend, it should be relaxing. Anthony is going on a fishing trip with some of his buddies and I am going to be hanging around doing things around the condo and watching movies.

I'll tell everyone all about it next week, but for now, I want to remind everyone that EVERY time you get in the car, please please please wear your seat belt. Some people believe that the bigger the vehicle, the safer they are. However SUV's roll all too easily.

Unfortunately this past Monday a friend of mine was not wearing her seat belt and her SUV rolled on the highway. There were three passengers in the car besides my friend who was driving. Only her son was wearing his seat belt. He and one woman had minor injuries. Another woman in the car has critical injuries. Unfortunately my friend died last Monday. Her name was Zeli and I have known her for almost 7 years.
She always made me laugh and put me at ease whenever I went to visit her at the salon. She was a wonderful person and she will be missed very much.

If you want more information I have linked the articles here:

http://www.norwichbulletin.com/news/crime/x680544811/1-dead-3-injured-in-Interstate-395-rollover-in-Killingly

http://www.telegram.com/article/20100713/NEWS/100719928/1116/newsrewind

The obituary is here:
http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/telegram/obituary.aspx?n=zelideth-dambrosio-zeli-velez&pid=144084394

Please remember to always wear your seat belt. According to other information I have heard, she was cut off on the highway, lost control of the vehicle and it rolled. Practice safe and courteous driving. Everyone please have a safe weekend.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Is that a Long Island Iced Tea?

Check out this article that discusses alcohol in a popular tea.

Anthony and I have both tried this, it isn't bad but it's not for everyone. It definitely has a sour taste to it.

The funny thing is, I got this tea once while out with my cousin Colleen. We were running errands and after I had a few sips I said to her: "I think we should go home now, I'm not sure I should be driving." She laughed and asked: "Did your tea get you drunk?" and I replied that I thought it did.

I don't drink this on a regular basis (it's actually VERY rare for me to have one) but I thought the article about it being pulled from shelves due to possible alcohol content was VERY interesting.

I think my tea did get me drunk that day. I do have a VERY low tolerance for that sort of thing. :)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The Number 9

I discovered something completely silly and frustrating just a few minutes ago.
For some reason, the past two days, I have been writing the number 9 instead of the number 7 when writing out the date.

I even did it last Friday.

For example. If I was writing: 7/13/10, instead I put down: 9/13/10.

I have no idea why I was doing this or why I thought it should be September or why I thought summer should be over?!

So I just spent the last 15 minutes trying to find all the places where I may have dated something incorrectly. In my line of work, unfortunately I have a lot of paperwork with initials and dates on them. (Yep! We like to kill trees! Thank you SARBOX!) I hope I found them all. Unfortunately I had done this in a bunch of different places. And my favorite number is 7....so why wasn't I using it?

Anyone ever have a day like that?

Why doesn't my brain work today?

Monday, July 12, 2010

I got a blogging award!


Last week my friend Marybeth awarded me the "Blog with Substance" award.
Thank you Marybeth! :)

Now there are rules to this award, I will do my best to follow them. They are:
* Thank the blogger who awarded it to you. (check!)
* Sum up your blogging philosophy, motivation, and experience using five words.
* Pass it on to 10 other blogs which you feel have real substance.

To sum up my blog using five words:
Dani Do Does Did It

There, I think that works? I don't really have a blogging philosophy and my motivation is simply to keep writing. I don't want to stop. And for my few followers, I think maybe this is entertaining? I hope so! haha.
Honestly, I was overwhelmed by the award and the pressure of coming up with something witty in five words or less. :)

Now, on to the even more challenging part! Who do I award this to? 10 more blogs!
I will do my best. (can I count Marybeth since her blog already gave it to me? Is this like mafia wars and farmville on Facebook and will it be a never ending thing?)

Or it is like a chain letter and should I stop the chain?

At the least I can list some blogs that I enjoy reading and maybe it will turn a few people onto new blogs that they never knew about before. In no particular order, blogs that I read (and I consider blogs with substance, well, uh...most of the time they have substance):

Alarm Clock Wars
I'm Just Walkin'
The Crystal Cave
Twilight Superfans
Zero Dean
My Parents Joined Facebook
No Debt Plan
Regretsy

Those are pretty much the blogs I check almost daily. I also follow loads of news stories and comics on a daily basis. :) Happy Reading!

Thursday, July 08, 2010

what is the world coming to?

I am linking to a video where one of our elected officials asks if an island can "capsize". I have no idea if he was joking or not. I really hope he is.
I usually don't comment on political stuffs, but here we go:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l9R-cQ_A_6w


Comments?

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

4th of July weekend update

Hello everyone!

We had a great time in Vermont this past weekend. We went swimming and hiking and fishing and tubing and ate TONS of food. Which means I gained a few pounds. Lucky for me, when I got on the scale this morning, it looked a little bit better.
I will need to be really good the rest of the week to make up for it though.

It's amazing how quickly you can add the pounds back on, especially right after you lose them! I think that maybe in another year, once I have maintained this weight, then a weekend like last weekend won't put on a few pounds. This is my sister's theory anyway, I hope she is right. She was surprised to hear that I gained weight since I really didn't eat all that much junk food and I didn't drink all that much alcohol. But I think all that juice (three different kinds) + Rum + Grenadine will really add up. :) Mmmmm...rum punch!

Anthony ended up catching his first "real" fish in Seymour Lake this weekend. I have to put the real in quotes because he has caught some tiny perch before, but he says they don't count. He caught a really large small mouth bass. He also gutted it, and cooked it. And I tried a bite. It was pretty good! He has caught lots of other fish in other lakes and the ocean, but this was the biggest one that I ever saw him catch. I think it was around 19".

We also had fireworks every night. This was really neat for us, but not so much for Oscar. He is TERRIFIED of fireworks. Thunderstorms don't bother him and neither do gun shots. Just fireworks. Anyone have advice on how I can help him get over his fear?

We also got to see my friend Amy (from High School) and her husband Mike and their daughter Sophia! She is so cute! Almost makes you want one of your own...
I tried to teach her a few new words this weekend. She couldn't quite get the hang of Oscar, but she repeated a sound that sounded kind of like she was saying Oscar. She kept repeating that same sound, so probably in her head, it sounded like she was saying Oscar. She definitely has "puppy" down. Anytime she needed to be distracted, we could say "Puppy?" and she would instantly focus on Oscar. :)

Monday afternoon we drove home. On the way Anthony bought a mountain bike, he found a good deal on a model from last year and even negotiated the price. The A/C in the car wasn't working all that well, but lucky for myself, Oscar and Ronja, Anthony is a pretty handy car mechanic. We stopped at a rest area and he was able to fix it.

It was nice to get home and sleep in our own bed. We have started some more work in our condo. We had the electrician back to install some more lights and conduit. I can't wait for the finished product! I might not want to move! :)

Just kidding. I'll want to move. But my condo will be so cool when we are done!

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Bet on your weight loss...it works.

Check out this article from MSN.
Betting on your weight loss can work for you as well!
(see today's post below)

Granted, I was losing weight before the bet...but the bet kept me on track and kept me motivated. You can do it too! Go for it!

Final Weigh In

Today was my final weigh in day. I wanted to lose 25 pounds by July 1st.
I reached 147.7 last week, so it was my goal to maintain that to this morning, and I did! (Good thing too...I had some junk food the other night, but not too much!)

I had made a bet with my friend TC. I did this because we both needed to lose weight and I wanted a gym buddy and someone to travel this adventure called losing weight with me. I decided TC was the perfect person to challenge. This is because he is extremely competitive and also because in the past, whenever he said he would work out with me...he went for about two weeks and then started bailing on me.

So my thoughts were this. Either he would bail again and I would win. OR he would step up to the challenge and challenge me to stay on track.
Well, the challenge worked. We are both in great shape and have lost a lot of weight.
Our betting terms were this:
We picked our deadline date (July 1st) and we picked out goal weights. (realistic goals for us to reach with a little room to spare in case we had a rough week) The date and weights chose were realistic goals, but they would also force us to stay consistent and make lifestyle changes, not just work out really hard at the last minute. His total weight to lose was larger than mine, this was due to the fact that he is over a foot taller than me and because he is a guy. :) We both put money "into the pot". One Hundred Dollars. If we both reached our goals by July 1st, then we both "won". If we both missed our goals by July 1st, then we both lost, and we had to put more money back into the pot and set new dates with new weight goals. If one of us reached our goal, and the other didn't, they get the "loser's" $100.
So who won? I did! With two pounds to spare. I was supposed to reach 150.

It was really close though. TC went "Biggest Loser" on me with last minute workouts and really watching what he ate the past 2-3 days and he lost SIX POUNDS!!! He was 2 pounds away from reaching his goal. What did he do? He was very strict with what he ate, was running every morning and working out after work. He has a membership at Bally's fitness so I couldn't see what he was doing exactly, but probably more running, weights and swimming. He probably did that on purpose, didn't want me to see him doing all that working out. :)

He looks great! Last night my sister and I were in the gym and she said "How much more weight have you lost? You look skinnier from last week." Well, she was right, he was six pounds skinnier, that bastard!

I told him that he has no excuses to gain weight. While losing weight takes dedication and hard work, this was not difficult for him. He is meant to be skinny. He now looks VERY close to what he looked like when we first met. I took some nice "after" pictures of him this morning. I'm hoping he will use the portrait shot I took to start a profile on match.com. That boy needs to start dating.

TC's blog is linked here, see the links on the right hand side. Maybe he will post his pictures there as well.

Some people might wonder if TC is upset that he lost by 2 pounds. Not at all! He has thanked me so much in the past month and has said that I was the cheapest trainer he has ever hired. :) Awww, thanks TC!

And thanks for my new Kate Spade purse...or sunglasses...or shoes...or whatever it is I end up buying for my reward! :)