Menu: February 28-March 3

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Sunday– Skinnytaste Orecchiette Pasta with Chicken Sausage and Broccoli, Recipe here.

Monday– Out to Dinner @ Restaurant (Late Work Night)

TuesdaySkinnytaste Fast and Slow’s Pizza Stuffed Chicken Rollups with House Salad Made with Love

WednesdayTacos with Jalapeño Poppers (store bought/frozen), but the Skinnytaste recipe here is also delicious

Thursday– Peppers, potato and Egg Sandwiches with Tater Tots.  Recipe adapted from Skinnytaste Fast and Slow Dad’s Pepper and Egg Sandwiches

FridaySpaghetti Squash with Garlic and Oil from Skinnytaste Fast and Slow


**One of my goals this week was to make a few new recipes to try.  I have both Skinnytaste Cookbooks, but have rarely turn to them for recipes.  Instead, I use her website  (I have never made a recipe from her that I didn’t like).  I wanted to break out of the old habits a bit this week, hence all of the recipes from the same cookbook.

Making Yourself a Priority

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So after I wrote the Weight Loss games post, I had two really shitty weeks (eating wise).  Truthfully, I fell off of the wagon completely.  Both weeks, I attended my Saturday meeting and then told myself, I’ll start tomorrow.  Tomorrow became Monday and then I tracked a little and decided that the following Saturday would be when I’d start anew.  Of course, this didn’t happen and because of my flippancy, I gained 2.2 pounds.  That number could have been way worse, but it could have also been WAY better.

Now, I know myself and the weight gain isn’t the issue, but rather the reason behind the weight gain.  This has been my trouble since beginning my weight loss journey ten years ago.  I am an emotional eater and when there is something going on in my head space, whether I realize it or not, I respond with food.  This is something that I really need to hone into in order to end this cycle (…hence why I am writing about it.  See, I am trying to be more vulnerable and share-doing so here is the easy part).

 I had my most successful weight loss journey the year that my husband (then boyfriend) and I moved into our apartment together.  I attribute this to getting out of my crazy house with my crazy family.  There is certainly something to be said for living on your own.

I started my weight loss journey that year in September and in February decided that I would train for a  half marathon.  My weight went down from 200 to 170 pounds and then stalled.  Despite this stall on the scale, running helped me to lose a ton of inches and it was one of the times that I felt beautiful, confident, and on track.  Moreso, I actually loved running and was pretty much addicted.  While I had started with the simple goal of running the 13.1 miles in May, there came a point where I would crave a run.  I’m not sure why I fell off the wagon that time, but I slowly gained some of that weight back (not a lot, about 15 pounds).  The real problem was that I stopped running.  Once I no longer had the half marathon to train for, my runs became shorter and more inconsistent.  Without a lofty goal, I suppose I didn’t feel the runs were worthy.

And once you stop…well I am sure you know how that goes.

For a moment, I forgot why I just went on that tangent, but I remember.  In an effort to get inside my head, I need to figure out what was different that time and why I was so successful compared to now.  I think the difference then was that I was living in a safe, happy place where I could finally focus on myself and only myself. Now,  I think my struggle is trying to figure out how to be good to me while also balancing my time as a wife and mother.  Having a baby throws a whole new wrench into caring for yourself.

Like most moms, I work full time and only have a few hours with my boy each day during the week.  Because of this, I want to spend as much time with my son as humanly possible when I am not at work. Add a large sprinkle of guilt for not wanting to neglect my husband and this leaves little time for me.

My husband is great and tells me all the time that it’s okay to take a break and that it will help to make me an even better mom.  I agree with this, but it’s the act of finding/taking time for myself that I am still trying to figure out.  Let me just say that mom guilt has a whole new meaning…and I am already a guilty person as it is!

Anyhow, I think that this is one of the things that is impacting my ability to focus on losing the weight this time around.

Now I need to find a solution, a way of making myself a priority and actually sticking with it.

I have already made it a point to go to my meeting every Saturday.  This is at least one hour or so that I get to be alone and focus on something important to me and my well being.  Another thing that I have been trying to do (but that I struggle with because I feel like it isn’t a necessity) is going to get a manicure pedicure.  It might sound silly, but it is one of the simple pleasures in life that I truly enjoy.  It’s a little time just to myself to check my emails or sit in silence.

Finally, I want to get back into running.  While this isn’t something that I can necessarily do alone, it is something that I can take time out of the day to complete with the baby that is still for me (and it doubles as fresh air for him which is really a win win).  This week, I have made a commitment to walk three days, a little over two miles each day.  Then, I plan on starting the Couch to 5k program to restart running (I’ll post more about this at a later date).

Wish me luck!

Moms/Dads, how do you make/find time for yourselves?

On Vulnerability

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After my mom died, I was very vulnerable.  I was ten years old and wanted to be loved. I had just lost the most important person in my life and no one ever acknowledged the significance of such loss. To top it off, what seemed like days later, my dad moved us in with his girlfriend and her children. I was myself (because that was all I could be at ten) and that just wasn’t good enough. I learned that in order to protect myself, I had to put up a wall and disguise my sorrow because sorrow was weakness.  Nothing was ever as it seemed and I had to be a quiet observer in order to determine what was safe, who was trustworthy, and how to interpret what was said in order to determine the truth.  To this day, I still have trouble meeting new people.  It takes me a long time to warm up because I exhaust myself with trying to determine whether or not they are deserving of my trust. Someone once said to me that I make people work really hard to earn my friendship and trust without them ever knowing that they are being put to the test.  I don’t think that I could say it better myself.

I tell you all of this because I am trying to dig deep to truly understand myself in order to be successful this time around. As I mentioned in the About Me section, I’ve joined Weight Watchers so many times I’ve lost count. I’ve been to a bunch of different meetings; however, my favorite leader/meeting is on Saturday mornings near my home.  She is phenomenal-she is the right balance of toughness and compassion with a dash of spunk.  I find that the best part of a good leader is that she attracts a good group.  Everyone is invested in the process, willing to share, friendly, and at a different point in their journey (something that I find helps me with mine).

This past Saturday, a girl who has been attending for about a year or so raised her hand to express her frustration about a stall in her weight loss despite accurately working the program (she joined when I was pregnant and unable to attend the meetings; however, I know of her story because she shares often on our Facebook Page which I still visited while growing my boy!)  As she expressed her frustration she began to cry.  As crazy as it sounds, I always find myself so envious of people in the meeting who are willing to fully open their hearts, even if it means having a moment of weakness.  Truth be told, I rarely raise my hand, but rather listen quietly (true to my character, as explained above).  Anyway, while I was thinking of how much I wish I could have the courage to do that, my leader made the following statement: “It’s okay to be vulnerable.”  She proceeded to say other things, however I sat balancing those words on my tongue.  It’s okay to be vulnerable.  It’s okay to be vulnerable.  This is something that I work on daily and something that I think acts as a road block in many areas of my life,  especially in the area of weight loss.

It’s scary to put yourself out there and face the fear of being judged, disappointed or ignored.  Yet, if you never do it, then you’ll never reach your greatest potential.  This is something that I plan to work on and something that I know will be one of my greatest obstacles as I proceed on this journey.

The Weight Loss Games

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So after a week that consisted of the Super Bowl, two snacky snow days, three restaurant dinners and a partridge in a pear tree few too many salted caramels, I did not have high hopes for this Saturday’s weigh in.  In fact, I started to play the maybe I won’t go to Weight Watchers game (that so many of us play when we have what we believe is a not so great week).  I mean, heaven forbid my weigh in book show the results of a bad week and blemish my four pound loss from the week before with a big fat plus sign.

Isn’t it funny the mental games we play with ourselves–as if not weighing in would mean that I didn’t gain.  I decided that rather than do what I’ve done in the past (not go or go and not weigh in) that I would step on the scale, own whatever it said, and move beyond the scale (do you like what I did there?).

So I went to my meeting, stepped on the scale, and was astonished to see that I lost .6 pounds.  This was an undeserving loss, but I must admit that I was happy.  As I sat down in my green seat, I reminded myself that this was a fluke and not something that I could count on every time I had a slip up.  See, for me, this is important because it can lead to a slippery slope where I think that I can continuously behave this way and lose.

More importantly, it shows that the scale does not always give an accurate depiction of our week. There have been weeks where I remained in my point range, hit all of my exercise goals and had a significant gain.  And then there have been weeks like the one I just discussed.  So on my present journey, I am working on not allowing the fear of the scale to dictate my feeling of success for the week.

…Oh and, remind me of this when I’ve had a bad week 😉