Monday, April 30, 2012

Monday Morning Weigh-In

Today was my second weigh-in to check my progress.  It was a little disappointing to see that after a week of eating well and exercising the number on the scale went up a pound to 172.  I do know that weight, especially in women, fluctuates, so I am not taking it too personally.  I know that, regardless of what the scale says, I do feel better when I am eating properly and exercising regularly.  Even after a week I can tell changes in my body, ever so slight, but changes non-the-less.  I am looking forward to next week, when I will expect to see more progress.

Thought of the Day: I have found that over the course of this week I have been looking at my body so differently.  I am appreciating what I have and not constantly letting myself be disappointed if I am not getting the results when I want them.  Eventually, living a healthy lifestyle will inevitably give me a healthy body! 

Question for my followers: How do you handle yourself when you seem to hit a speed bump on the road to your goal?

Sunday, April 29, 2012

A Brief Check-In

Today I am taking a break from writing anything super lengthy so I can enjoy my day.  I did however, have an awesome workout this morning.  I highly suggest if you want a quick and effective workout!  

Have a wonderful Sunday everyone!  Enjoy a good rest and maybe a nap!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Hear the Music

As a praise and worship leader, I love music and I find that fast beats give me some extra oomph to work harder and last longer during a workout. I, however, do not appreciate “music” that berates women, describes sex explicitly or uses the f-bomb every two words.  It is extremely difficult to feel like a beautiful Women of God working to improve my health when I am hearing popular recording artists spew profanity.  There have been times during my workout class that I have literally stopped what I was doing (usually burpees) because I was so extremely shocked by what was coming out of the speakers.  

This blog is going to be a positive space, so instead of complaining all day, I wanted to share with you what I listen to as an alternative.  I love listening to Jesus Culture, Josh Hamilton and pretty much any 80’s rock music!  Most of it is uplifting and non-offensive.  It doesn’t tell me that I was made to drink till I drop, or that my only asset is my, ahem, assets.   I like monitoring what I listen to, especially when I work out.  I find that afterwards I feel confident and encouraged, and maybe a bit sweaty.     

Final thought: To keep your attitude and spirits high, try to avoid listening to music that will convince you that you are anything but special and unique!     

Friday, April 27, 2012

The Friendly Gym Class

I go to a wonderful workout class in the mornings and I absolutely love it!  I find that having workout friends not only helps motivate me during the class, but I find myself wanting to go to class to catch up!  Workout classes are like miniature summer camps.  Once you do a crazy hard work out with someone you are bonded to each other because you both survived together!  Just like sharing a cabin with 12 girls for a week!  As silly as this sounds, it’s true.  I would absolutely recommend trying to find a group class that fits in your schedule.  Tying in some social time with working out makes it more enjoyable.  You also get to watch how your friends are improving, which is encouraging as well.

There are places, other than a gym, that offer affordable group classes.  Check with your City Recreation office to see what they might offer!

Another benefit to having friends that you exercise with is that they are most likely to be interested in your goals, how sore you are from your last workout and how your diet is going.  It is important to have someone in your life who you can talk to about your health goals with because it is beneficial to verbally process and get encouragement from a friend.  This being said, not everyone is interested in what your health goals are.  In order to not alienate any friends because I was constantly talking about my health, I found a few friends that were interested and had common goals.  I love these friendships that I have.  They are encouraging and uplifting.

If you do not have anyone to talk to, please feel free to post your progress here!  I would love to hear and listen to your stories and your achievements!  I will try to respond in kind so you know there is someone out there who cares about your health!

Have a blessed day everyone!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

What "willpower" you?

I posted a poll on this blog asking what is the main reason that you do not achieve your goal and unanimously everyone who voted said a lack of willpower.  By far this is also true for myself.  I will do well for a while but eventually loose my gumption to continue whether I am lazy or busy, whatever my excuse.  It really comes down to the fact that I am not disciplining myself.  However, this answer did not suffice.  I wanted more, something I could work on.  So I thought about the word "willpower."  Where does my willpower come from?  I discovered that I was not believing what the Word of God said about me.  

I was using my own "strength" and "power" to feed my will.  Eventually, my own energy supply ran out and I gave up.  I was also really good about finding a reasonable excuse for it, too.  Ultimately, I had to pray this prayer:

"God, I do not have the ability on my own to do what You have called me to do.  I need your help.  I believe in Your Word that I can do all things through You and that your power is made perfect in weakness.  I thank you, Jesus, for the redemption of my willpower at the Cross and I thank you for the strength and determination needed to accomplish the race set before me." 

It is not our job to find it in ourselves to be where God wants us to be.  We end up stressing ourselves out by overworking and over thinking.  We try to discipline ourselves with negative thoughts instead of using the Word of God to encourage us with positive promises.  
All this to say, I want to encourage you today, to find your strength, find your power, find your energy source in the Word of God!  Here are some encouraging versus to memorize so that when we come up against the "empty well" that used to be our will power, we can be filled with the revelation of God's promises to us!  

"And He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.'  Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me."
-2 Corinthians 12:9

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." - Philippians 4:13

Final Thought: What "Willpower" you?  And no, the answer is not power bars!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Balancing Bad Food

Morgan's tip for avoiding binges:

There are times when I really want something definitely on my “no list.”  This is the list of food that is bad for you, regardless of whether you are healthy or not.  These are some of my temptations:
-Kit Kat bars    -Doritos    -Cheetos    -Ice Cream
These are some of the hardest foods for me to say “no” to, so I have developed a system that lets me eat them occasionally, but not overeat them.
Here is the process

If I deny myself every craving eventually I will crumble and I will end up eating massive amounts of junk food.  This flow chart helps me find balance.  If after I decide that I really, really want something and I am willing to leave work, or get dressed or stop what I am doing to get it, I go to the gas station and buy one snack size of what I want.  I then go back to what I was doing and enjoy my snack.  This way, I get something I really want without overeating.  Also, snack sizes cost more, so I think twice about doing this often. 

This is just my way of doing it, if it's not for you, don't do it.  Have a good day everyone!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Breakdown

I wanted to share with you how I am going about achieving my goal in the physical.

Step one: Eat Correctly

It has been proven over and over again that when you cut out carbs (especially the bad ones aka: sugars/starches) you will lose weight, and not just weight fat.  This is not a gimmick, this is science, let me explain.

Energy eaten that day gets burned off first during exercise.   If it is not burned off, you body will store it.  Therefore, if you limit your energy (carb) intake, your body will have to resort to finding another energy source.  It then starts breaking down your stored fat and using that as energy instead.   

This is not a life time way of living, however if you are trying to reach a weight goal, it is a good way to get there.  Once you are at your goal, you can add carbs and whatnot, as long as you are still exercising.  This is how you maintain a healthy weight.

Step Two: Exercise Regularly

I have some favorite types of exercise that I love to do.  I go to a gym class twice a week (at 5:30am!  Eek!)  It is a HIIT class, High Intensity Interval Training.  In the class we do lots of stuff, but it comes down to short bursts of high intensity cardio with added weights or just your own body weight, depending on the exercise.

I know that I need to work out more than twice a week so I also try to fit in a couple at home workouts as well.  I love, they have great 12 minute cardio workouts that are really fun!  Sometimes I will find a good workout on and try that at home, too.

When it comes down to it, I try to work out four times a week.  It has also been proven over and over again that doing high intensity cardio workouts for 12-15 minutes is more effective than jogging on the treadmill for 2 hours!   These small burst cardio routines not only are super effective, they elevate your metabolism for the next 24-36 hours!  I love working out this way, it doesn’t take forever, it’s not expensive and I still get results!  

Monday, April 23, 2012

Monday Morning Weight-In

I have decided that Mondays are going to be the days that I will weight myself.  I will only do this once a week for motivation, and although I have a pound goal, I am not chained to the scale!  During the month, women fluctuate up to 5 pounds!  Therefore, I use the scale as a loose reference point. 

My starting weight:171
My goal (for healthy BMI): 145

Thought of the day:  You are an original, like we talked about yesterday, so why do we constantly compare our bodies to other people.  Here’s an idea, let’s stop posting pictures of other peoples bodies as “thinspiration” and instead start visualizing our own bodies at our final goal.  Visualization techniques are used by the best athletes, so let’s try it for ourselves.  If we keep looking at other women we are only going to be disappointed, because you are original, just like they are.  You might be the same weight, even the same height, but you will not look the same and that is OK!  In fact, it is a wonderful thing!  Let’s start loving our bodies, today! 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Miracle Pill

I am not too proud to admit that there was a point in my life when I started using diet pills.  I didn't use them for very long, however, the realization struck regardless, I was desperate.  I was desperate to loose weight and I was desperate to change the way I looked.  Ultimately I was desperate for a miracle.  I believed the lie that I couldn't do it by myself, but more importantly, I believe the lie that said I wasn't good enough the way that I was.  I was ashamed of the way that I looked.  I was desperate.

Today I have a much different perspective on this subject.  And this is how I got it:

1) I stopped believing the lie that my worth was based on my physical appearance.

2) I stopped believing the lie that I had no control over my life, if I wanted change, I was the only person that could make it happen.

Last Night, my Pastor spoke on the story in John 6 when Jesus fed the 5000.  It was so right on with what I have been learning and it tied directly into what I wanted to talk about next.  With my desperate attitude out of the way, I still felt like I needed some kind of miracle to continue on my journey to be healthy.  It is so easy not to care about what I am eating or how often I am being active, I knew that I was going to need a divine intervention to make it stick this time.  The good news, last night was the intervention!

These are the principles that my pastor taught us regarding miracles.

1) A miracle always begins with the thankful recognition of what you already have.  (John 6:11)

Translation: "Thank you God that you provided me with a life, a soul, a spirit and a body.  I am thankful for being alive today and I recognize the gift that you have given in my body especially."

Fact: You are an original, there is not another one like you!  You are very special, and not just on the inside, but on the outside as well!

2) Until you can be thankful for something that is not enough, then you will not receive multiplication till you have more than enough.  

Translation: "I will never achieve my goals for health until I can be grateful for the health that I do have, even if it is not that much."

Fact: If you are alive and breathing, you are healthy enough to thank God for your health!

Ultimately, the miracle is found in our attitude.  Our attitude (which is what is really going on in our heart)  will determine what we are able to receive.  If my attitude is one of negativity and anger then I will not be motivated or excited to do what I know I am supposed to do.  On the other hand, if I have an "Attitude of Gratitude," I will be motivated, excited and thankful to be able to make a change in my life.

Sometimes the miracle doesn't happen in the physical (don't get me wrong, it certainly can), however, sometimes the miracle happens inside our hearts and then, when we change on the inside, we change on the outside!

Today I am getting scale to track my progress and provide motivation!  Also going to be doing some cool weight loss motivation tips I found on pintrest.  Thanks for following!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Finding the Balance

Balance.  In life everyone seems to be seeking a balance, whether it is a balanced social life, a balanced marriage relationship or a balanced meal.  When you find a balance in your life, you find a peace.  This balance is found by looking at your life in a completely different way.  Recently, the Lord has been speaking to me about finding this balance (or peace, as it is often called), and it seems to all come down to my mind set.  I am most balanced and at peace in my life when I consider that everything I do and everything I am should be an act of worship to the God of the Universe (who happens to be my best friend, too).  When my mind is focused on Him, everything seems to come into perspective, relationships, house cleaning, even the health of my body.

This is the main reason for this blog.  In Psalm 139: 13-14 it says:
"For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well."  

Here are the facts:
Fact: God made you.
Fact: God does not make junk.
Fact: You are not junk.

It seems so simple, yet I often feel less than wonderfully made when I look in the mirror, or those pants don't fit as well as they once did.  This means only one thing: The way I look at my body is completely wrong.  I have achieved weight loss and health goals before, however, it usually doesn't stick and I never get to my final goal.  Why is this?  Thanks for asking!  

This year I have a goal, and over the next couple of months, I will be sharing not only the physical changes in my body, but also the changes in my walk with the Lord which is just as important.

I want to make something very clear.  This is not for body-beautiful!  I say that because if I am fearfully and wonderfully made, I am already beautiful.  I am not doing this to fit in or look like the girls in the magazine. To stay with my vision for this blog, I will share with you my goal:

Goal: To pursue a healthy spirit, soul and body through seeking God daily, practicing His teachings and treating my body correctly.  Physically I need to loose around 30 pounds in order to be at a healthy BMI (body mass index) level.  This will ensure that I will be healthy and around long enough to further the Kingdom of God.  

Thank you for following along with me on this journey!

Here is my before picture!