Friday, August 31, 2012

Bakin' Friends in all the right places

I know this is supposed to be a weight loss blog- and I promise, I am still working on that goal- but everyone needs a little fun now and then, right?

 With that in mind, I decided to join a group of bloggers (and some non-bloggers) and participate in a baking swap called Bakin' Friends hosted by Stephanie of Steph's Bite by Bite. Each month will feature a new "secret ingredient" and different participant match ups. This month's secret ingredient was rolled oats. It seems like a pretty easy ingredient- but it was so hard to choose something to make! It needs to have the secret ingredient and be able to last long enough to be shipped across the country if need be (and mine went clear across the country- all the way to California!)

I'll let Anne from Have a Cookie tell you all about what I ended up baking and get on to the yumminess that
showed up in my mailbox this month!

When I pulled up in my driveway after work and saw a box on the porch I immediately started racking my brain to figure out what I ordered online and forgot about (This MAY be a sign I do too much internet shopping...). When it dawned on me that it MUST be my Bakin' Friends treat I was just relieved that I got home before my husband! Both my girls were sleeping so I was able to rip into the box right away and see what was inside. I apologize in advance for the poor picture quality. I'm still learning to use the manual setting on my Nikon and the lighting, although better outside than in my dark kitchen, wasn't so great in my backyard. Plus- I was trying to keep the dog from getting into everything!

I already knew I was getting treats from Chris, who doesn't have a blog- but has been commenting on mine since we were paired up- Hi, Chris! I wish I could tell you where Chris sent these from, but I tore into the box so fast, I didn't really think to look. I'm pretty sure they came from Wisconsin?? I could be totally wrong- it DOES happen from time to time ;-)

So simple- you'd never know that this was a box full of yum!

Nestled inside the box, wrapped in protective bubble wrap was this simple and pretty tulle wrapped container:

 Which was filled with super delicious Oatmeal Peanut Butter Squares! They were sooo good- seriously- and healthy to boot! (Because anything that includes oats is healthy, right?!) I couldn't believe how moist they were even after shipping! They had a great peanut butter flavor, a generous amount of chocolate chips and some chewy oats. I ate 2 while I took these pics. Then I shared with my daughter, my husband, my sister in law, then I ate more. Unfortunately, by the time Monday came around, they were gone! (No self control- hence the need for a weight loss blog!). My sister didn't even have a chance to taste them.

But- I have the recipe! So, I can make these again for all those who didn't get to have any!

Thank you so much, Chris! 

Interested in participating in the next installment of Bakin' Friends? Check out all the information and rules here: Bakin' Friends

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Please skip your Starbucks Latte today...

And donate that $5 to Baby Easton (the little guy in the picture above). Easton is the nephew of a popular Long Island photographer (who actually took my niece's newborn pictures). He was born on August 23 with Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB):

...a rare genetic skin disease that causes the skin to be so fragile that the slightest friction can cause severe blistering—inside and outside the body. Today there is no cure. Severe forms of EB cause patients to live with constant pain and scarring. The worst forms of EB lead to eventual disfigurement, disability and often early death.There are many patients who are diagnosed with milder forms, which, while they can be extremely difficult to live with, are non-disfiguring and non-lethal.
The only treatment for EB is daily wound care and bandaging. The daily routine is a grueling, multi-faceted daily regimen. Caregivers, often parents or family members of EB children, must work in tandem with medical professionals to determine and administer different treatment methods to care for EB wounds.
With skin as fragile as a butterfly wing, EB patients are dubbed “Butterfly Children”. On the outside physical wounds prevent them from normal daily activities enjoyed by other children. On the inside, their dreams are the same as any child who loves, plays, learns and grows despite the pain and impediment caused by their disease. With the programs and services of Debra of America, EB’s Butterfly Children and their families find the support they so desperately need. Debra of America works to ensure that a life of struggle is also a life of hope for the 1 out of every 50,000 live births in the United States affected by EB. (Source)
This poor baby shakes in pain whenever he needs to eat, poop, have a diaper or bandage change. I'm not sure what God's purpose is in making an innocent baby suffer. I can't imagine the emotional pain his parents must feel.

To read more about baby Easton and his parents and brothers and donate that $5 (or more!) please visit Help Save Easton on Indiegogo.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Where, oh where

Where oh where has my willpower gone?
Oh, where oh where can it be?
I eat whatever I can see
Oh willpower come back to me!!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Now what?

I haven't done the C25K since last Wednesday's disaster. I have a (pretty) good excuse- pain. I'm not sure what happened, maybe it's the new sneakers? After I posted that night I sat down on the couch and discovered that my legs, ankles and feet all felt very tender to the touch. It felt as if someone had taken a bat to my lower extremities. Not a great feeling. When I woke up the next morning barely able to walk I decided to consult Dr.Google. Turns out- I had shin splints! What an embarrassment. Not even 2 full minutes of my (pathetic excuse for) running at a time and I get shin splints.

I took to Facebook to see what I should do next since I have many fitness minded friends. Here is a brief sample of responses (I edited them for brevity):

Friend 1: running on concrete is bad.

Friend 2: Run through the pain

Friend 3: Stretch.

Very Knowledgeable Friend 4: Get new sneakers (be fitted), try more strength training, do NOT run through the pain. Increase intensity OR duration by 10% each week.

Friend 5: Go slower. Buy shoes on sale at target.

Friend 6: Use tape supports

Friend 7: Ice and ibuprofen. get new sneakers. Rest until you feel better.

Friend 5's Hubby: Eat better. I don't know what your diet is like now but set up a proper routine. It makes a huge difference. (We're not 22 anymore)

Very knowledgeable Friend 8: Do NOT run through the pain. Ice and stretch. Get good shoes and walk a few minutes before you jog.

So, to review- I spent $65 on crap shoes, am doing too much on the wrong surface and eating poorly. I knew I was eating poorly- but the others- WHY?!?! Why can other people grab a pair of shoes and hit the pavement? This is such a blow to the ego and to my determination, my oomph, my get up and go (I can't figure out just what the feeling is).

I need to find another way to burn some calories without joining a gym. My father says to walk with the kids. That would involve avoiding all parks in the area to ward off tantrums from my 2 yr old, stopping every few minutes to pick up thrown items, packing a crap load of "just in case" stuff to bring along.

I'm thinking roller blades. I have a pair that haven't been used in 3 years.
Hopefully they still fit.
Hopefully I remember how.
Hopefully I won't somehow hurt myself.

I'm also thinking I may go back to Week 1/Day 1 of the C25K and do it with a friend on a track. Maybe that will help without having to buy new shoes. I feel like such a fool talking about icing my feet/legs, doing major stretching, etc for what is basically a glorified walk with a bounce. Why can't it be easier?! The eating thing is hard enough- once I get up the drive to actually exercise- my body rebels against me. It's so not fair. I was just starting to get excited about all the different races there are to compete in- color runs, mud runs, zombie runs, regular ol' runs for charities I believe in and support.

Please, please share some advice if you've been through this before. I need some been there, done thats.

Thanks for reading.

PS- my sister is giving me back my goal jeans. She has grown out of them in reverse. They are too big on her. I love her and at the same time I hate her (not really, Jen- I just hate me for not having any will power.Hugsandkissesandeverythingnice)

PPS- I may post some motivational "Before" pictures tomorrow. I haven't decided if I want to subject my small audience to such horrors.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

F is for Failure

Sometimes I feel like I fall short in everything I do.

Back in the day, I was an overachiever. I thrived on overextending myself. Somehow- in the last 13 years since High School- that has changed. These days, I don't overachieve. I don't even achieve most of the time.   I feel overwhelmed all. of. the. time. There is so much I want to do- but it all seems so difficult that I pretty much give up before I even start.

I want to lose weight yet I have no willpower (Have you noticed the lack of Weigh in Wednesday posts?)
I want to be great at my job yet I don't even like it enough to give it my full attention when I can.
I want to be the perfect Mom yet my kids are stuck at work with me every day where I can only give them little bits of attention.
I want to be a great wife yet I am constantly bickering with my husband.
I want to have a lovely house yet I can barely find time to finish one load of laundry.

I can't seem to get it together lately. I always feel so tired. Is it laziness? Is it normal? I'm not sure how to fix it. I want to get back to the way things used to be. I want to be a more current version of the straight A student I used to be.
I'd love to get back to looking like this- and I thought I was fat here!!

In the past few weeks I've at least been following the C25K plan- but tonight I even failed at that. I wasn't feeling it- but I went anyway. I was only able to finish half of the runs. During the third 90 second run I got a stitch in my side (that's what it's called when it feels like someone is stabbing you under the ribs with every breath...right?) and I felt like I was going to barf up my dinner (sorry-TMI). I had to walk the rest of the way home except for one dark and creepy area that I felt compelled to run through.

I will re-do Week 2 Day 3 tomorrow- but I'm disappointed that I couldn't finish it today. It's just one more thing to add to the list.

Sorry for the pity party- I just needed to get that out.

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

New sneakers and the Couch to 5K with a friend


I finally bought some new shoes! I really wanted to be fitted at a running store, but I'm on a super tight budget so I did the Wet Foot Test and then went to Bob's Stores to try on some different brands. I
discovered that I have a normal foot and needed a neutral shoe. It turns out that my feet have grown since having 2 kids- and they were already large to begin with!!

I went with the Saucony Women's GridCrossfire:

Aren't they cute?!

So far they are ok. Last night when I did Day 2/Week 2 of the C25K my right calf felt as if it was going to snap and my feet were killing me when I finished. My feet have hurt after every "run" thus far- so I'm hoping it's because I'm heavy and not from the shoes.

When I'm back in the green with my finances I hope to get professionally fitted. For now, though, these will have to do.

Notice that I put "run" in quotes? I can't seem to say "I'm going for a run" without feeling like a total impostor. I'm too fat to be a runner. What I am currently doing as part of the C25K training plan cannot be considered running- right?! I'm barely eking out 2 miles in the 30 minutes it takes to complete a session. My 2 year old can go faster than that. 

Hopefully I can work up to the point where going for a "run" includes actual running!

I also want to introduce my new "running" (there are those quotes again...) buddy:

Devil Dog
That used to be a soccer ball
Bailey has been a terror since we got him as a puppy (he's only 2 years old now). He has a ton of energy and is destructive. Luckily, he is super friendly and loving and he hasn't destroyed anything major but shoes and toys add up when they constantly need to be replaced. Unfortunately, he hasn't been getting enough exercise which probably leads to the destructive behavior. So, I've decided to take him with me when I do the C25K training. He does pretty well I've only tripped over him twice so far and he's only decided to go on the opposite side of a telephone pole than I 4 times. I'm hoping he learns some good walking manners and expels some of his intense energy!

If you are interested in taking your buddy running with you- read up on it here: Pooch to 5K 

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Can't believe I'm sharing this...

Couch to 5K W1/D2- COMPLETE!!!

Annnd this is what I look like after an easy walk/run:

Purple-y! However- I feel great! Day 2 was definitely easier than day 1.

Thanks for reading!

Adding in some exercise

I finally took the plunge and started the Couch to 5k plan last week. I managed to complete Week 1/ Day 1 last Wednesday night after I got the kids settled in for the night. I actually really enjoyed it. Well- I enjoyed the peace and quiet of the streets at night, the fresh air and the pride in having finished the workout without cheating (or passing out). Things I didn't enjoy? Turning purple, actually running, finding myself on a road with no street lights, my craptastic sneakers and coming home to the dog barking like a madman, my 2 year old still awake and running around the house and my baby screaming in her crib. I had to take a 2 second shower and then deal with all the commotion before I settled in. Unfortunately, I was so sore from hauling my lard body all over town during Day 1- I haven't yet done Day 2. It's on tonight's agenda- as long as the weather holds out. 

If you're looking to try out a Couch to 5K program- here are some links to get you started:

The original program can be found on the Cool Running Website. There are plenty of beginner tips and forums that will help you get started.

The podcast I am using is from Running Into Shape. You'll find plenty of podcasts and apps out there so look around and find one that appeals to you. I wish I had a smart phone so I could use an app that supplies cues over your own music- but I have to make do with my old school iPod, however there are apps for both Apple and Droid operating systems.

 Last time I did the program (pre-kids) I used Robert Ullrey's podcasts. They worked just fine- but I prefer "real music" over techno beats. 

During the run I realized just how badly I need some new sneakers. They are definitely high on the priorities list. 

Has anyone done the Couch to 5K program? Any tips or tricks to share?

Thanks for reading! 

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

I just found the coolest thing!!

I had to come on and share. I follow a whole group of bloggers from Utah and another group from Rhode Island. It seems really cool to have friends in the blogosphere that can also be friends in REAL LIFE!! So, while on a hunt to find some other bloggers from my area I came across Whispering Sweet Nothings. Not only is her blog really pretty, she has this totally awesome (hello, 1984 ;) ) feature that allows you to submit your blog and she'll map it. This way, you can look at the map and find other blogs from your area! Are you excited??? I am!

Check out Coast to Coast on Shane's blog- have fun! I can't wait to see who I'll find.

Thanks for reading!

Weigh in Wednesday

I don't really want to talk about it- but I will, since that's the point of this blog.

I has a VERY eventful long weekend- we attended a wake on Friday night and went back to a friend's house afterwards where there was chips, pizza and wine; Saturday we were out all day on a friend's boat where there was chips, beer, cocktails and burgers; Sunday I took the girls to my parent's and I was dealing with the aftershocks of the lovely message I received, there was chinese food, iced coffee and cheese and crackers; Monday we had to attend a funeral. I happened to spot the scale out of the corner of my eye while I was getting ready for the funeral and decided to see what kind of damage I had done over the weekend. To my EXTREME shock I was DOWN 3 lbs since last Wednesday! I even stepped back on twice to confirm. That certainly lifted my mood and I felt like I was rocking my LBD (Little Black (wrap) Dress- bought at Banana Republic and worth every penny! ;)). Well, as much as one can rock anything while attending a funeral. I took it pretty easy at the after service luncheon- filled half my plate with salad and had a few bites of some of the other things, then I had a fairly decent dinner. I didn't count points since we weren't home all day.

Yesterday, I stepped on the scale again with intentions of weighing in a day early since I knew I was going to a belated birthday dinner with a friend (Hi, Liz!). I didn't want to get all bloated from my yummy dinner and have to see the effects on the scale the next morning for weigh in (I know it's cheating- cut me some slack! I had a rough week!) You can imagine my surprise when I saw that there were 5 extra pounds on the scale since the day before! one. day. How is that even possible?!!? Needless to say, I didn't record that weight.

I ate VERY little yesterday since I knew dinner wouldn't be good. I didn't go nuts at dinner- but I wasn't very health conscious either.

Now, here it is- Wednesday- up ANOTHER 2 lbs from yesterday.

That makes me up 7 from Monday morning. up 4 from last week.

I really can't believe it. >.<