Saturday, May 7, 2011

20/30-Day Shred

I've finished day 20 of the 30 day shred. Tomorrow I will start Level 3. Level 2 was kicking my ass - I do not have enough strength in my shoulders. Level 3 includes a lot of pylometric training and since I've traditionally had good lower body strength, it might be a little easier. We'll see tomorrow!

I also went back to the doctor for an update on my cholesterol. There are four factors that make up the advanced lipid test that I had and three of the four factors improved. The doc said she could tell I had been working on it. (Thank God because my weight hasn't changed even a freakin' ounce). Unfortunately my HDL (good cholesterol) actually got worse. She's giving me six more months to work on it. If it hasn't improved at that point, I'll have to go on another drug (I'm already on a statin). I'm going to start running again at least 3-4 days a week as soon as my 30 day shred is up. I'll continue to circuit train a few days a week, but also run and/or bike. By July I want to start training for another half marathon. I haven't figured out if I want to do one here in Indy in the fall, or if I want to find one in another city/state. I'm considering doing the Disney Princess one...

Hopefully this, along with the diet changes I've already made and will continue, will get me to where I need to be.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Looking fit and feeling fine

Day 11 of the 30-day shred....almost half way there and I started level 2 today. Woot. and by "woot" I mean, holy crap I'm going to hurt tomorrow.
Today I saw a profile of myself in a window reflection and I thought...hmm my stomach looks a little tighter. It made me stand up a little straighter and pull those abs in. So I'm seeing a difference and feeling stronger.
Now I have two choices. Enjoy where I am and just keep it up. OR I can weigh myself and/or take my measurements and try to quantify what I feel. I'm torn because I know it can backfire. What if I haven't lost any weight. If I find out I didn't lose weight or inches, I may feel defeated and discouraged again and just give up - why bother working so hard when it doesn't matter anyway. Should it matter if I've lost weight? I feel better; I'm eating better; I have more confidence. Is that enough to carry me forward and keep going? Or do I need to be able to tell people "I lost X pounds"?
I'm definitely leaning towards waiting until the 30 days is up.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Keep eating...

Last Monday I decided it was TIME for a change (past time really) and started eating better, using SparkPeople's heart-healthy meal plan for a guide. I stocked up on fruits, veggies, whole-grains and lean meats and have limited just about everything else. I'm also  on day 9 of Jillian Michael's 30-day shred.
I did have a cookie yesterday and I relaxed the diet a little for Easter, but generally I've been doing pretty well.
In fact, as I've been tracking what I eat on Spark People, I'm having more trouble eating enough rather than eating too much. I have fruits and veggies with every snack and since they have so few calories, I'm just not taking in that much. But I'm not really hungry. I do need to work on drinking more water, but I get distracted by work and forget to go get a refill. I'll keep working on that. I think next week I'm also going to use the rest of my detox stuff from Dr. Zimmer's. I'm due for that.
I haven't weighed myself since I started, nor have I measured, but I'm hoping that when I'm through with the shred I'll see some sort of difference so I will continue to be motivated to keep at the healthier lifestyle and not fall back into eating out and eating junk all the time.
One last note, I had my fasting blood draw for my followup cholesterol test last week so maybe I'll get some results on that soon. I hope to be able to show Dr. Polit some improvement.

Monday, April 18, 2011

What time is it? Shred time

I shredded tonight - yay me! And I went so far as to take my measurements and weigh myself (and it wasn't even required by a doctor!) I haven't taken my before photo yet...must do soon.

Here's the starting stats:

Waist 37
Hips 48.5
Upper arm 14
Thigh 24.5
Bust 41
Weight 200.4


Day 1....

So, I'm back on the wagon. And I'm wearing my seatbelt so I don't fall off. Spark meal plans, workouts on lunch hours and 30-day shredding (I will complete the 30 days this time!).

Today I feel like I've been eating all day. Nothing awful, but something all the time...1/2 pita with cream cheese, raisins and nuts, a clementine, mini Jimmy John's sandwich, a pickle, peanut butter & blueberry sandwich, and now carrots & yogurt.

On another good note, I worked out at lunch time. A circuit of sorts at the war memorial. However, now I can't stop sneezing.

These pretzels are salty

Way back, almost two years ago now, when Scott and I first started dating, he began a quest to cut back on the salt I eat. I like salt. It's yummy. I'm not much of a sugary snacker, but chips and crackers and popcorn and the like are my favorites. I would add salt to everything...including already processed (ie FULL OF SODIUM) foods and restaurant dishes.
I am proud to announce that Scott has succeeded. Lots of things taste salty to me now, unappetizingly. Some chips are too salty, salted popcorn is too salty, processed meats (roast beef I had on a sandwich today) are too salty! I don't add salt when I'm cooking and often I don't have to add salt to my meal and I try to never add salt at restaurants. The one time I usually do add salt is to a baked potato. Those still need salt to me.
My blood pressure has been creeping up recently (again) and I really don't want to go back on meds if I don't have to (I've been off for about 5 1/2 years). Today also marks the beginning of better eating for both Scott and I. The grocery trip included LOTS and LOTS of fruits, veggies, lean meats and whole grains yesterday. I'm starting the 30-day shred (again) with a group of ladies and I'm reminding myself who I am doing this for - ME. So I feel better. Look better. Am better.
I may not be able to do the mini this year but I'm ready for a comeback. Let's do this thing.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Trying again...

I'm going to get back on track...I'm going to eat well and workout and very carefully track my results for the next few months. I really feel like something is still not right in my body, but it's hard to prove it to my doctor if I've been lazy about doing my part of taking care of me. It's getting nice now and despite my red, swollen, itchy eyes and constant coughing and sneezing (thanks a lot, pollen); I'm itching (pardon the pun) to get out and workout outside. I want to run, do strength and speed drills (speed ha!) and bike. I want to swim too, but we're not quite for ready for that outside!
So, it's time. This weekend is it. I'm not sure why its so hard for me to get started this time. I've done this before. I've started from scratch and I DID IT! But I've also failed and that's what must be holding me back this time. It's really tough to come out of this hole and say "I do have some control. I can make my body do things that I want it to do." Wish me luck.

Friday, March 18, 2011

I hate shopping least clothes shopping. I've never liked it much because my legs are so short and nothing seems to fit me the way they're intended to fit (at least in the way I think they're supposed to fit).

But after months of trying to lose weight to no fact, I think I gained a pound, I've decided that I'm going to try to be okay with this body if its the one I'm supposed to have. I'm not going to stop working out and trying to eat better, but I'm also not going to stress too much. That's not good for me either. So I went to Kohl's today and spent a lot of money on clothes (okay, the amount is what some people would spend on a pair of boots, but for me it was a lot).

So here's what I scored:

2 pairs of grey dress pants (I hate the word slacks)
2 pairs of black dress pants
1 pair of jeans
1 pair of khaki pants
2 cotton dresses (one that is black and can be dressed up)
1 denim shirt dress
2 bras
3 pairs of panties
a pair of tights (for next winter - they're so warm!)
a bathing suit
1 scarf
1 belt
a pair of arm warmers that I've been coveting all winter
and 3 pairs of shoes
I also got some fabric tack.
And lastly, I almost forgot, I got something for a soon-to-be-mom friend.

I also got my hair cut and ate at one of my favorite breakfast places.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Body Betrayal

I know that none of us have complete control over our bodies and health, but it's still extremely frustrating sometimes. Obviously over the past year or so this has been a struggle for me. The loss of control has become more acute to me as I've gone on more and more medications and supplements to try to prevent inflammation and infection, keep my energy levels up and keep in check the other organs that have gone out of whack.
Today I was betrayed by my body once again. I had decided to try Mirena for birth control. For those not in the know, Mirena is an interuterine device, meaning it is inserted in the uterus and releases hormones for up to five years to prevent pregnancy. I had talked to my gynecologist and after I got a relatively clean bill of health after being treated for cervical abnormalities (surgery last December), we were going to do the insertion today. Unfortunately my cervix will not allow the IUD to pass through to the uterus. He tried a couple times (I tried my damnest not to cry from the cramping) and it wouldn't go. He said he could have forced it, but at the risk of causing infection or other injury, didn't feel that would be a good idea. I started to cry. Not because of the pain (not that it wasn't awful), but because of the betrayal. My body not allowing me to do something I wanted - yet again.
So we went another route. I'm not sure what the cost will be yet - I'm trying not to worry about that - but I went with Implanon instead and I was able to get that done today. Implanon is a small flexible rod that is implanted in my upper arm. It releases the same hormones as Mirena and it is left in for 3 years. I think in a week or so I'll be fine with this option and possibly even see benefits to it compared to Mirena, but I feel so betrayed right now it's hard to see the good side. Thankfully I had included Implanon in my research so it wasn't a completely foreign option to me.
The doctor did tell me something else interesting though that is helping me feel a little better about something else. He said that the problem with  my cervix would probably prevent me from ever birthing a child vaginally. I had already decided that I will not have any more children (hence the long-term contraception) ... partly because I am ready to continue forward with my life with the family I have not and love rather than add to it; and partly because having more children would not be a sound decision with my current (and future) health condition.
But the one hard part in all this for me was the strong desire to have the pregnancy and birth experience I really wanted and had always imagined - a natural one (yeah, yeah, I know I'm nuts). So I guess if that is most likely an impossibility anyway, I can let go of that desire and move forward. I'm going to try to let this bitterness go and enjoy my day off shopping tomorrow and enjoy next week at work before we go on our mini-trip to Chicago.
Oh...and my blood pressure was also pretty high today (and last week when I went to the doc) so I'm a little concerned about that but worrying isn't going to help me much.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

So I failed...

I made some grand promises to blog regularly blah blah blah....and I failed at that. However, I have been doing a good job of being a more affectionate girlfriend some of the time. I had no idea how much more busy I would be at work and how that would affect my non-work time.
I am so exhausted at the end of the day right now that I barely make it Annyka's bedtime before I'm crashing. So I've done a poor job of a) blogging and b) working out. And now I'm awake and anxious at 4 am and hoping that a little blog therapy will help me get another hour or so of sleep. Some thoughts this early am:
* I need to get back into the habit of daily (or at least 5 or so days a week) cardio. And not just working out in my basement. I NEED that alone time running, swimming or biking to decompress now more than ever. When I'm dreaming about work and reports, it's not a good thing.
* I want to use some of my tax money (whenever I get it...still waiting...) to make a little home office upstairs. I think it would help me feel a little more in control of the work, but I also need to put a room divider up between the office area and sleeping area so theres no crossover.
* I'm also ready to get this tax money back (and it's pretty hefty this year) so I can fence the yard, pay for my summer vacation and pay back myself and my mom for money I've borrowed out of their accounts while waiting for this money. GRRRRR. I HATE owing money (even when it's just to my own savings accounts). Oh, and of course, pay off medical bills, per usual for my life these days,
* My cat is so happy I was awake at 4 am so I could let him in from the rain. Silly cat.

Okay, going to go attempt sleep again. See you on the flip side.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Love & stuff ... Day 10

I gave myself a Bare Minerals makeover this evening. No way can I spend a half hour on my makeup every morning (I'm not sacrificing sleep for that!), but it does look good and I think it'll be pretty easy to use once I get the hang of it. Of course, I also don't have to use every product every day like I did today either.

So here's before...this is my normal every day no-makeup me (at about 7 pm):


And here is me after Bare Minerals foundation, eye color, mascara and lipstick


I don't really want to admit how much better I look ... I know I look tired everyday, but I don't want to be someone who has to "put my face on" to go out. I live a far too active life for that crap. So now, like everything else in my life, I look for the balance.

Oh, and just for's is a picture of the wild kiddo in her after-school outfit - shorts, tank top and leg warmers and coat on top for outside playing. She was pretending to be a cheerleader and for reason she was cheering for Kentucky. Her dad would be proud.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Love project Days 6-9

Ooooh I'm a bad blogger ... not blogging everyday. Sorry about that.  A quick update:

Chemotherapy kicks my ass. Granted, I know it could be way worse. I'm not nauseous. I'm not losing (much) hair. But it is exhausting. I take my drugs on Friday night and I will sleep hard for at least 10 hours that night...and the next night...and sometimes take two long naps on Saturday. This past Saturday I only got about 8 hours of sleep the previous night and I felt out of it all day. Thankfully Sunday I was feeling better.

I had lunch with my kiddo at school today. She was soooo excited - and so were many of her classmates. After that lunch, I am sooo thankful for the child I have and the "upbringing" (not my favorite word, but it works) she's had. Compared to some of those kids in her class she sits so still and quiet! I don't know how much of that is my work; her preschool's work; or just her nature, but thank God for it! She is also relatively neat (but you wouldn't know it from her room). Some of these kids clothes are so stained ...and I would guess some of it is just from that day! I successfully got Annyka to try a bite of celery and she ate half of a banana in addition to her whole slice of pizza. My biggest struggles with her are over food. She just doesn't eat enough.

And for the record, even though I've been a lazy blogger, I have not been lazy overall! I have worked out each day. Saturday was only about 15 minutes of stretching and core work, but it was something. Yesterday I ran on the treadmill. Have I mentioned I hate the treadmill? Because I HATE the treadmill. But I did it. Today...we'll see when I get home.

I'll get a photo up this evening.

See this...

That's my "core." It's okay right now, but traditionally my midsection is not something I've struggled with so I want it to be better...stronger, slimmer, tighter. So that was the focus of today's workout. We'll see what happens.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

What day am I on again? .... Day 5 (Friday 2/18)

I have a love-hate relationship with jeans. I am a jeans person. I am comfortable in them...well when I can find a pair that fits me. And that is the hate part. Are jeans that fit this difficult for everyone? For them to not be tight, they pretty much seem to be too big at the waist. If they fit my waist, I can barely zip them because of my hips. If they fit my hips, they're big and gappy at the waist. And then of course we have the length issue. My legs are about 6 inches long (only exaggerating a little) so I can only buy from a couple stores and can't ever get any of the trendier styles. Currently the two pairs that fit me "best" right now are both cut off since they were too long.
The parts I they get more comfortable with time; how you can make the right ones dressy or casual; and that my rear tends to look pretty nice in jeans.

I did do something else yesterday for ME and only ME. I finally decided to get Bare Minerals makeup. I am now waiting for it to arrive in the mail. Oh and lastly; I RAN on Friday! Like on my feet outside on the sidewalk and no ankles collapsed. :)

I didn't manage to get around to taking any pictures yesterday - alternate Fridays are always a little busy for me. Work, rushing to pick Annyka up and take her to meet her dad in eastern Indiana, then back home for a late dinner in Indy and Scott and I usually spend the evening together since he works too much on weekends now.  So sorry no Friday picture. I promise I'll have something for Saturday.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Running out of song 4

I'm tired. I need more sleep (7-8 hours/night is not enough for me any more). I'm having trouble concentrating. I forgot my gym bag so no lunch time run for me today  - yeah, I was going to attempt 1.5 miles. First run since November. I think my ankle is ready now that there are fewer obstacles (read: ice) on the sidewalks. But I will somehow get a workout in tonight. Maybe I'll add to this posting later today...maybe not. We shall see, eh?

Me, tired, at work...and evidently with a stray bit of hair sticking out of the side of my head. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The Glory of Love ... Day 3

I REALLY didn't want to work out today. I fell asleep while the kids watched Nanny McPhee and it's hard to get up and workout after that. But I did. It's done. Yay me.

Today I also went to the dentist. The past year or so I've struggled with gingivitis. I flossed the way I was taught and still - no difference. At my last appointment, four months ago, the hygienist recommended a Waterpik. I bought one. AND for Christmas Scott got me a Sonicare toothbrush as my "big gift." I suppose I could have taken that as an insult if I were a critical sort, but I love it. My teeth feel smooth all the time. And the hygienist today said "wow, really white" and "look how tight your gums are around your teeth!" So glad we're seeing improvement. So here it is...a little piece of me for today - my big ole chompers:

Maybe my favorite part of me.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Love 2

I realized something last night. It's not so much a body image issue that I have. When I look in the mirror, I don't dislike what I see. I'm actually pretty comfortable with myself naked. What I struggle with, is how my clothes fit me. I hate the way they look on me. The way they pull in certain places and are tight in others.

But I'm not quite sure how to fix it just yet. I did my "balance trainer" workout today so maybe that will help...but maybe it won't. Maybe I'll feel stronger and healthier, but my body won't change. Then what? Maybe it's like pregnancy where you might wear the same size as before, but your body is a different shape. I guess we'll just see.

Me and Lucky Cat are going to hang out and watch some TIVOed shows. As Annyka makes me say every night: "I love you; See you in the morning; Good night."

Monday, February 14, 2011

All I need is love...Day 1

Day one was a good day. Annyka and I spent time making projects - her 100th day of school project and paper hearts for her friends.
We made a special dinner for Scott - turkey tenderloin with ravioli, homemade marinara, mushrooms and green beans with chocolate brownies with cream cheese filling for dessert.

And then I did my new The Firm Balance Trainer video while kiddo watched Cats & Dogs. 
Here's me today post workout (see the sweat?)...I'm kind of hoping my abs hurt tomorrow!

A new challenge...Happy Valentine's Day!

I am tackling a new 30-day project today…but, Nicki, you do that all the time. Yes, that’s true, but today I’m going to document it all on this blog. With…wait for it…pictures. Of me.  

I feel like I’ve lost me. The last time I lost me, it was a completely different situation and a divorce and the two years after are what finally brought me back. Now, it’s my own fault. I can’t blame a bad marriage or mate. Well, not entirely my fault, a big part of it has to do with my health. 

Finding out I’m not the healthy person I want to be is tough. I want to be invincible, with nothing worse than the occasional (AND fixable) sinus infection. But I’m not and that is hard for me to wrap my brain around.  A little over a year ago I decided on my own that I don’t want to have any additional children. Pregnancy was tough on me and I would like the opportunity to enjoy my own adulthood without children before I (hope) to have grandchildren. However, making that decision on my own is one thing, having a doctor tell me I may not have the choice, is entirely another. 

In the past year or so I’ve also gotten away from taking photos of me. I have very few. This is an exciting time in my life. Annyka and I are in the place I’ve wanted to be for the past five years, but I’ve barely documented it because I’m ashamed of me. So I’m going to stop that. 

There’re many pieces to my loss and grieving, but a big part of it is the giving up of control.  So I plan to take it back. And I will do that in two ways. 

1.       I will take on a self-conceived fitness challenge.  I will be working out every day for 30 days. I dreamt of running last night, but unfortunately because of my still-weak-from-Thanksgiving-sprain ankle, I’m not quite ready for outdoor running yet (not with this stupid ice), but I may tackle the treadmill this week. Some days I might do my new balance disk workout; some days might be medicine ball; some days dance; others at the gym, but I’m doing something each day and hope to see some kind of change in my body during that time.But even if I don't lose weight, I want to like the body I do have more.

2.       I also pledge to become more affectionate towards Scott during this time. I’m not going to go into detail on this, but I do care for him and I’ve struggled to show that lately. 

My goal during all this is appreciate me more. Who I am now…not necessarily who I was two years ago. After my divorce I had to learn to love who I was and photos helped me get there. I had to look at myself as others did. I hope to do that again. 

So today is the day I start. My first post will be next. Happy Valentine’s Day! I love you; thanks for reading.

Friday, January 7, 2011


Yesterday the doctor's office called. They want me to come in for an appointment regarding my cholesterol. Evidently my doctor thinks I have unlimited funds to just come in and chat every other day. But whatever, it's not like I'm not getting used to going to one doc or another each week.

Last night I had a dream. I was back in school - at Franklin College. There were people there that I went to high school with, grew up with and went to Ambassador with (but I don't remember any FC friends in the dream). And in one part of my dream, my teacher told me that I was on track to reach my goals (which is kind of a reference to work), but that she wanted to talk to me about my blood test results.

This leads me to believe part of the reason I am so frustrated about this most recent medical development, is because I feel like I'm failing. Somewhere deep inside me, I must feel like I should have been able to prevent all this crap that has been going on in the last couple years. That it's my fault and I should be able to prevent it and control it and since I can't, I have failed. I was finally starting to feel less anxious, less depressed, less .... whatever about my health, but I feel like I'm backsliding now. It might be time for some counseling (oh good, another set of appointments) to help me deal with the emotional side of my physical health. Sigh.