I've lost and gained the same 70lbs over and over again. I know all the diets inside and out and can tell you how to work every machine at the gym. I have ran 5K's, 10K's, 15K's, and half marathons. I have been strong, and I have been weak. I can describe myself and what I've been through a million times but what I want you to know most about me is My Story Is Not Over.
Ok by week three I thought I was going to be all appled out. I thought this task was going to be a lot harder, but then in swoops my husband. I started buying him apples as well and he mentioned how great caramel would be. Of course I was upset he was trying to fatten up my apples but then I remembered there is sugar free caramel syrup. Oh then the fun began.
Do you know you can put just about anything on apples? This picture is from Kraft.com. They used Granny Smith apples, caramel, and chopped pecans.
My favorite combination is peanut butter and chocolate chips. If you heat the peanut butter for 15 seconds it will get thin enough to dip the apples. After it cools drop some chocolate chips on your apples.
You can also add sugar free chocolate syrup, marshmallows, and a ton of other healthy toppings.
Below are the tools you need for this apple venture. Please note I say need loosely. They just make eating apples daily a little easier than only using a knife.
These are all Amazon prices. You might pay a little more in the stores, but well worth the investment. They each cost about the same as a bag of apples. There are endless possibilities on how to make this apple challenge work. Be patient with yourself and just enjoy natures gift.
There is a huge debate about organic versus non organic fruits and vegetables. I have to admit that I had not given it much thought until I decided I was going to eat an apple everyday. Of course Google was stalking me and I started seeing a lot of articles about the pesticides on my apples. I decided I would do a little research.
I found out that my love for Granny Smith apples came with a price. Turns out for me to get that glossy green color I would be ingesting a high amount of pesticides every time I bit my apple. The apples are sprayed to preserve the color and work as pest control. The pesticides adheres to the skin and then leaks into the core. Not only am I getting all the outside pesticides, but now they are inside my apple as well so washing the apple is not very effective. Research shows that these pesticides are harmful to the brain, nervous system, and due to toxicity may cause cancer, hormone disruption, as well as skin/eye/lung irritations. This is just the tip of the iceberg for apples.
So in a nutshell I bought organic apples for my second week.
I’m going to be honest, the color threw me off. Not only were they not glossy green, but some were even a yellowish color. I also had to ignore that some had brown spots. What organic was translating to me was funny colored apples. I figured if I was giving up on color I would get it back in taste. I wish I could lie to you and tell you the apple was amazing. They were not. They were not worse than other apples but it was not better. I’m going to chalk that up to apples being out of season.
When I grow stuff in the garden it’s amazing. The flavors are some of the best things I’ve ever tasted. I thought organic would translate to be the same. Nope. Now for transparency I got these apples at Walmart and they were only $1 more than non organic apples. Next week I’m going to try apples at Whole Foods and Kroger and give you an update. I need to give a fair assessment.
So what is my verdict? I’m going organic for the apples. That $1 more is not worth the risk of the pesticides for me. I also might go organic for other fruits and veggies as well. If I’m making one change I might as well make some more. With all my other issues I can’t worry about pesticides.
Now I am not telling you all to make the switch and I’m not saying your apples are bad. What I’m saying is if you can’t grow it yourself make sure you are eating the best foods possible. I am also saying eat what you can afford. Don’t feel bad for eating a regular apple instead of organic. That’s better than eating that candy bar you’ve been eyeing in the checkouts. We are all still learning how to navigate this world. Don’t beat yourself up about an apple.m
“We are born to belief a man bears beliefs as a tree bears apples” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
I never thought I would blog for a whole year, yet here we are. This year will come with some changes, changes I hope are for the good. Along with weight loss I want to continue to spotlight my passions. Those include gardening, cooking, and combatting depression along with a host of other things.
I thought this year I would be traveling and spending time with family and friends yet I find myself still trapped. Trapped by a new variant of Covid. I know we all thought this thing would be gone yet it just keep fighting and fighting. So many loved ones have been affected and with no light in sight our new normal is now just our normal.
I took a lot of time thinking about what I wanted to do in year two as I continue to make positive changes in my life. When I reflected I realized how much I had grown and how much better I feel. Depression did not get the best of me last year. That alone made the journey worth it. I could have dwelled on the weight I didn’t lose instead I focused on what I learned.
For transparency I started the journey at 290. Today I weigh 268. I lost a total of 22 pounds last year. Nothing to write home about, but guess what I’M WRITING HOME. Normally I gain 20 pounds a year and this year I lost 20 pounds. Yea I’m winning.
Last year I told you all about a weight loss drug that promised 10% weight loss in one year. I’m 7 pounds away from that goal. So what’s my plan to accomplish that?
For January I plan to focus on eating fruits and veggies. Specifically to start I plan on eating an apple a day. Let’s see if it keeps the doctor away.
So why apples? First off their delicious. They range from super sweet to so tart you pucker when eating them. They are packed with fiber which we all know makes us feel full. They have anti-inflammatory properties, Vitamin C, lower risk of cardio vascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and cancer. Not convinced, visit Google. Apples are going to be my January superfood.
As I sit here and watch my backyard flood in the beginning of January I immediately think how good this rain would be for gardening. In Ohio we haven’t been getting much snow until late January into February. Last year it was so warm in December my garlic began the sprout and when the winter finally came and killed it I couldn’t get it to grow back. This is the main reason I decided I’m just going to plant my garlic in early spring next year. The rain also reminded me that it’s time to grab a warm drink and start ordering seeds.
I’ve learned that with some planning I can garden all year round. I might not be able to be outside in the garden, but I can do something garden related. Today I’m going to go through all the seed catalogs and place some orders.
I’m so happy to report that while almost everything has gone digital seed catalog still come in the mail. This gives me the ability to see all the wonderful things I can grow and then I’m able to recycle the paper in the compost pile. Call me old fashioned but I still love the feel of turning pages.
Below are a few of my favorite seed catalogs. Each year Gurneys gets a good chunk of my seed money. I also got some seeds from Seed Savers and Seeds and Such. I will do another post after I place some orders. I will also give you a glimpse of my favorites and seeds I wasn’t so impressed with. If you are sitting around wondering how to get in the garden spirit order yourself some catalogs.
FYI- in case you are wondering I did start by getting seeds from big box stores and those seeds are great. The reason I switched to catalogs is because of the varieties. They are endless with catalogs. You also can get heirloom seeds as well. I just love options, and the catalogs give you endless options. I mean just look at the picture, there is a whole catalog about tomatoes. Eighty eight pages of tomato varieties. You will not find that at big box.
“We will begin by learning how to tie our shoes” – John Wooden
There is nothing a fat person hates worse than tying their shoes. If you look closely at really over weight people you will notice they have opted for either Velcro or slip ons to make their lives easier. FYI this post is not to shame them, it’s about me.
The other day my shoe lace came loose while in a store and I bent down to tie my shoe. As I was doing that I realized that I had not tied my shoe in public in years. What I would typically do if my shoe lace came loose would be to tuck the lace in my shoe until I got home. Why?
It took everything in me to bend over and tie my shoe. Even while home I didn’t dare bend over and tie my shoe. While sitting I would prop my leg on my other leg and then tie my shoe off to the side. When I got home that day I wondered if all my shoes had been tied this way.
Clearly they had. This was the mate to the shoe I was wearing that day. Now follow me as I try to explain why this is important.
When you are large you make adjustments. Adjustments you don’t even realize you’re making. First you don’t tie shoes, then all your pants have elastic, next you’re searching for a home with no stairs. I also realize things I normally did changed. I’m not walking miles shopping, I’m not doing activities that require a lot of movement, and I’m blaming the weather on everything so I never have to go outside.
The worst part about what I noticed is right now I’m no longer in pain. My back is not hurting constantly and my knee has not hurt in months. Why is this bad? I now realize I had these ailments due to weight and weight alone. Yes my doctor had given me this information but honestly I always thought there was something more. It could not be that I and I alone had caused these issues. Um yea, it’s me.
As I end this year and go into the next I’ve decided to do one thing, stop and tie my shoes. I don’t do New Years Resolutions because I’m always evolving not just on January 1. For me today I’ve decided that I’m no longer making excuses, no longer tucking the laces in the sides. I’m simply going to bend down and tie my shoes.
There is a quote by Tim Storey that says “a comeback is not a go back.” I turned that quote into something that was much more relevant to me right now.
As you all know I have been grinding for the past two weeks. My goal was to get the last weight off so I could make sure I hit my 10% goal. Yes I know I turn everything into some crazy competition. Anywho I was doing well. I was using my Peloton app and I had actually starting meditating. As an added bonus I also started reading daily affirmation again. I was attempting to start my day off on a positive note. It’s Christmas time so I needed to spread all the joy I could, starting with myself.
Then it happened.
I woke up and I had this cough. It was a slight cough that progressed throughout the day and eventually led to a sore throat. That night I apparently coughed so loud my husband couldn’t sleep and he demanded I go see the doctor. After scouring the city I found an appointment at CVS thirty minutes from our home. The nurse practitioner was great outside of her shoving that q-tip up my nose. She reported that I didn’t have Covid, but I do have the flu and an “angry” ear infection. Those were her words. She prescribed me a ton of medicine and told me I would get worse before I got better. She was not lying.
I can barely move. I feel like all my energy has been zapped out of my body. The intense coughing is making my body hurt but especially my head which doesn’t help. I feel like shit. There is no other way to explain it.
So my question was why when things are going well does something like this always happen. This setback. All people who try to get healthy go through it. I thought mine would honestly be endless cookies or holiday treats. Instead I’m trapped in my bed watching tv burning no calories but starving. I didn’t lose my appetite. No, I couldn’t get that lucky.
Normally I would write a long post about this, but I’m not. Maybe because I’m in the thick of the illness. What I will say is I believe God was telling me to sit my butt down. I had three events planned this week not to mention stuff at work I needed to do. I went from being on my A game to getting shut down in a matter of seconds.
My husband has been nothing but supportive. Ok he’s been some crazy guy who keeps yelling at me for trying to leave my room. I know he’s doing this all out of love, but being trapped in this room is driving me crazy. I think I’m the only person who goes crazy when they have nothing to do.
There is a purpose in this madness. I don’t know what it is, but I believe there is a reason. I’m here to tell you a setback is not a go back. You don’t get to go back and try to make up for the time you lost. You don’t get to try again. You just need to move forward and keep going in your positive direction. Sometimes we just need to let stuff go. I can’t believe I’m saying this because its hard for me to do it. This year has been huge for me. With just one week left lets see what happens.
FYI- Next year will be all about being 10% better. Thank you Calibrate. You have ignited a fire. I know you wanted my money, but nope. You’ve simply helped me realize how great I’ve been doing.
“There is no perfection, only beautiful versions of brokenness” – Shannon L Alder
Have you ever wanted to try something new? Skiing, roller blading, or a kale? What has stopped you from trying those things? If you said broken bones has stopped you from skiing I’m going to agree with you right there. If you said fear well then you should keep reading.
Years ago I decided I wanted to low carb. I knew I needed some support so I actually started an online group called “Queen Newbies.” It was a group of women who all followed a low carb plan and encouraged others. The group was a descent size and I have to admit I found one of my closest friends from that group.
The main reason I started the group was to prevent me from messing up. If I was going to low carb I was going to do it right. I was going to avoid all bread, place complicated fast food orders, and pee on sticks to see if I was in ketosis. I was going to do it right. FYI- I really did all those things.
Full disclosure- I did it right and I lost 60+ pounds. The girls and I did two retreats to St. Louis (this was our midway point) and really bonded over our anti carb stance.
Again you know my story so obviously I didn’t keep doing this. I also stopped running the site and fled back to bread at the first sign of stress. I went strong for two years, but when I moved back to my hometown my whole world changed. A series of events sent me into what I now know as depression and since I couldn’t be perfect at low carbing I decided to just stop.
Fast forward and to now and what I’ve learned is you can cut back carbs without cutting them out. I can avoid toast for breakfast and skip all the biscuits and rolls with dinner. It’s ok to find out what works for me, yet not be crazy. It’s ok to not be perfect at avoiding carbs yet reap the benefits of simply being better.
If you want to do something but your scared because you won’t be perfect, guess what? You won’t be perfect so just do it. You don’t have to tell anyone, and you don’t have to announce it. You can dip your toe in the water and see if this is something you want to do.
Do you want to try a cleanse, try it. Do you want to start fasting, try it. Do you want to attempt yoga, try it. Do you want to start running, try it. Try, try, try, try, try it.
Tip- I am not saying to stop following the slow weight loss plan we have been doing so far. What I am saying it’s it’s ok to try something new without blowing everything up. If you find you like how you feel after a one day cleanse maybe you can do it once a month. If you find fasting works for you, or your church is recommending it I say try it. Again I am not saying jump on the newest bandwagon and throw everything out the window that you’ve done this far. I’m saying look to see if you can incorporate this into what you are already doing. A great tip of what to avoid is simple. If you can’t work it into what your current plan avoid it. Too many restrictions will mean failure in the end.
Moving right along…..So following the plan of only using what you have I want you to try something new that you haven’t done. Does your app have a boot camp? Try it. Do you have a book that talks about fasting and cleanses? Try it. Do you have a cookbook with some fantastic recipes? Try it. Do you have scrapbooking stuff laying around? Try it.
Something that might bring you joy is probably already in your home yet you’ve just been too scared to try.
So for week two you will either continue doing something you’ve already started or ADD something new. DONT stop doing the first thing you’ve started. You don’t get off that easy. You’re also going to keep it to yourself. Don’t even tell me. That way you eliminate that fear of trying.
Remember the first step is always the hardest. After that it’s just one foot in front of the other. Let’s take some baby steps towards change.
“You have everything you need to get to where you want to be” – M. Ross
As I was watching television a weight loss ad came on. I had to admit I haven’t seen one in a long time so I was actually surprised. We switched to a new service so I haven’t seen the Weight Watchers or Nurisystem ads that normally played fifty times a day. The crazy part is I know that over the next month tv, internet, magazines, and social media sites will be flooded with programs or products that will help you lose weight.
I want you to notice that I said they will help you lose weight, because they will. I’ve been on Weight Watchers and it works. Like I’ve said before, programs work, I did not. This journey over the year was to help me realize that I had everything I needed to lose the weight I wanted.
I have to admit that I was doubting my success. As of this blog I’ve lost 21 pounds. I was thinking that I should have done better. My goal was to lose 52 pounds and as usual I was beating myself up, then I saw the ad. There is a new weight loss plan called Calibrate. The program promises you weight loss, coaching, and medication. The program is one year which I loved, because I have kept saying quick weight loss is not going to happen. Everything about this program sounded great until I saw that they had financing. Why does a weight loss program need financing? The program needed financing because it cost $1620. I know you don’t believe me. I will pause while you go search Google for yourself. I will also wait for you to notice that you can finance the weight loss for $135 a month.
If you are thinking “You know what Machon I really want to lose weight and $135 is not a lot of money.” I’m going to tell you that you are 100% correct that is not a lot of money. I now want you to read the fine print. At the end of one year they are promising you a 10% weight loss that you will maintain. Guess what? For zero dollars I am 8 pounds away from reaching that goal.
Just when I thought I hadn’t done well I’m reminded I’m exactly where I need to be. The best part is I’m here for zero dollars. I should smack myself for even thinking about financing weight loss. Now I know thousands, if not millions of people will sign up for this program. I wish all of them well. I want you to know that if you’ve followed my plan this year you’ve probably lost 10% of your body weight and didn’t even know it. Look at us being all successful.
With all the above madness I’m sure you’re asking what the challenge is for this month. The challenge is to use what you have. If you are like me you have at least one app, one weight loss machine, one blender, one scale, or one book. I want you to use that one thing you have for seven days and evaluate how you feel. For once in your life don’t spend money. Don’t buy the next best thing or the next gimmick. Look on your phone and see what you have.
For seven days I’m going to use that Peloton App. I got mad at myself because Calm and Headspace were running 50% off sales and I wanted to purchase the app. I’ve had the free versions on my phone for years. My point is I was going to buy them for meditation. I was going to buy an app to meditate when I already had two apps for meditation. Apple has the Breathe app and Peloton has more meditation classes than I know what to do with. I told myself I wanted the app for the sleep stories. Then I found out Spotify has sleep stories and guess what? I already pay for that.
My point is I’m not going to buy any new stuff for weight loss for 30 days. Hopefully I don’t buy anything past this 30 day mark.
Disclaimer- if you decide you want to use that fancy blender or you need to get special food for the next seven days I’m also going to caution you against that. Buy just 2-3 days worth. Eat it all, then buy more. Yes you have to make extra trips to the store. What I discover when I try to do this is I get all this food and after three days its still in the fridge. You don’t know how many cucumbers or bags of lettuce I’ve wasted with my high hopes. I’m sure if you look really hard you have some healthy foods to throw in that blender.
Let’s lose this 10% and then let’s go on a fancy trip with that $1600 we just saved. For fun I’m going to to try to stash away money I would have spent on fancy stuff. For December I’m going to add the $40 I did not spend on the app. I am also going to hide all the apps I’m not using so I’m not tempted.
Let me know what you are going to try for 30 days?
Isn’t that what it feels like. Once you hit Halloween it feels like an all out food fest. Starting October 31st it becomes ok to eat all the chocolate and candy you want as long as it’s Halloween themed. After most of your can’t is gone you blink and you are baking pies for Thanksgiving. When you finally get your waist to fit into your pants again it’s time to eat every treat you can as long as (you guessed it) it’s Christmas themed.
This time of year becomes a literal food fest for me. I actually have two bonus holidays that others may not have. I cook more food for the Ohio State vs. Xichigan game than I do for Thanksgiving. Then if I have not eaten enough by birthday comes after Christmas which brings another reason to eat cake. YES I still love cake.
I’m writing all this as I’m telling you I’m ending my no snacking month. In my warped mind I did not snack I just replaced meals with snacks. Not good advice at all, but I’m being honest. For lunch today I had fried apples and vanilla ice cream. I will eat dinner tonight and no snacks after that. Clearly this month has been a struggle for me. For some reason I simply could not stop eating crap unless I removed it from my house. I didn’t buy chips at the grocery store last week because I couldn’t stop eating them. My family is not very happy about this.
So what’s my plan. My plan for this last week is to lose back the weight I’ve gained from Thanksgiving. I don’t think I’m going to lose anything in December so the only goal I have is to not gain weight. This year has been so up and down I’m surprised I’m still at it. Accountability sucks when you don’t want to so something :).
As a recap for those following the my current weight is 269. This does not include the Thanksgiving pounds. My goal is to end next week at 269 pounds. For me that is a total of 21 pounds lost for the year. Not one pound a week but much better than the 20 pound gain I have with other years.
For me this year I’m thankful. I’m thankful that I kept this blog going for a full year. I’m thankful that I did in fact lose some weight. I’m thankful that I’m working diligently on my mental health and I now 100% understand how it impacts everything I do. I am thankful with how I’ve grown over the past year and really focused on improving myself.
I encourage you to reflect on how much you have improved over the year now. Don’t wait until New Years and make resolutions. Don’t wait until December and then purchase crap you don’t need. Hint- next months focus will be using what you have.
We are better than we were 11 months ago. You might not realize it now but hopefully you have been keeping a journal and you can reflect on how you have changed. We may not be where we want to be, but we are much closer than we were before. Keep pushing forward.
A few months ago I decided I wanted to upgrade my scale. All over social media I kept hearing about this scale called Renpho. This scale not only gives you your weight, but gives you BMI, body fat, fat free body weight, subcutaneous fat, visceral fat, body water, skeletal muscle, muscle mass, bone mass, protein, BMR, and metabolic age. Yea I can feel you rolling your eyes right now.
The issue was I thought all this information would be amazing. Remember as kids we were told “the more you know.” I thought I wanted to know more. I was wrong, ya’ll know that’s coming LOL. Anywho, I was excited and didn’t really think hard about buying the scale because it was under $20 on Amazon. The scale I already owned cost more than that and didn’t do half of this amazing stuff. Oh did I mention it gives you all this information via bluetooth to your phone. WHAT!
Ok so scale was ordered and of course it arrived at my home two days later. If you are a weighing pro you know you can’t weigh yourself in the middle of the day after you’ve sipped water all day LOL. You have to weigh first thing in the morning after you pee and after you have taken off all your clothes and jewelry. This is the only true way to weigh.
The next morning I was all excited to step on my fancy scale. Oh I need to mention I was already expecting my weight to be off because new scales never show the weight of your last scale. They always add a few pounds. Yes this is my story and I’m sticking to it.
Sooooo what happened? The scale hurt my damn feelings. The weight was not the problem. The weight was actually the same as it had been on the old scale. That’s what pissed me off. That means the damn thing was working properly. What upset me was all this other data I thought I needed. You know that saying “the scale doesn’t know how much muscle or fat you have.” Well this scale did and I was a hot mess.
I stepped on the scale and weighed 271. Again the weight was not the issue. My BMI was 40.1, not shocked. Here is where I went crazy. My Fat Free Body Weight was 129 and my Metabolic Age was 49. First off my head is too big to weight 129 and I was 44 when I got the damn scale.
Now before you all go acting crazy saying you have to carry some fat to live, if you think I don’t know that stop reading. Remember being fat makes you a pro at all things weight related. The shock to me was that I had 149 pounds of weight. You look like you need some reference.
Things that weigh 150 pounds: white tailed deers, red kangaroos, cougars, mountain lions, 1/2 small panda, 2.5 Dalmatians, or five car tires. I’m just going to focus on the last part for more visuals. An average passenger tire weighs about 27 pounds. So I was carrying a cars worth of tires plus a spare. Yea irony huh. My spare tire was literally a spare tire.
Moving right along. I was feeling like hot garbage. Why did I think I needed all this stuff? What did I think it would tell me? If I didn’t think I was fat before, this scale was a reality check. This was not a good purchase at all.
After I regrouped from my shock I realized this scale did exactly what it said it would. It told me all the stuff it said it would. The box had a huge picture showing the display and how it would provide me with data. I thought I could change the outcome of the data. I thought I was special.
This scale reminded me a lot of a long term relationship I was in. For years I was cheated on. The man would look me in the face and tell me he loved me then sleep with someone else probably the same day. I want to tell you this happened one time, but this blog is all about truth and the truth is it lasted almost ten years. I fell in love in my teens and into my twenties I let this man dictate my worth. Problem was he was a Renpho scale. He showed me everyday who he was, yet I thought I was special. I thought if I stepped on the scale the right way, if I ate some different stuff, if I did what I thought he wanted me to do, the outcome would be different. It never was. Over time without me knowing, this beat me down, and was the beginning of my battle with depression. Therapy got me here people.
I’m about to shock you with what I say next. I don’t blame this man. I don’t blame him because again he showed me who he was, time and time again. Women will always tell you about the little things. The little things that happen that let them know something is off. These were big ass things that I chose to ignore, and that was all on me. The reason I don’t blame this man is because while he broke me he provided me with something I love more than life itself, my son. My son was also what helped me leave this toxic relationship. I needed to set a good example to my son, and his dad cheating on his mom was not a good look.
Years later my sons dad apologized. Ironically it was just one week prior to his death. He was accidentally killed in a motor cycle accident. As you all know I believe everything happens for a reason. I haven’t gotten to the bottom of all the reason but what I learned is when a Renpho shows itself, you need to listen. You saw the signs and you chose to ignore them, stop ignoring them.
My husband has a saying which I love. “Fix Yourself.” Right now that’s where I am. I’m fixing myself. One day at a time I’m reducing that number on that scale. One day at a time I’m putting my life back together. I not only need to shed some spare tires, but I need to shed some hurt feelings. It’s hard not to bring our old baggage into new relationships, but as Erykah Badu said:
Bag lady you goin’ hurt your back
Dragging all em bags like that
I guess nobody ever told you
All you must hold on to
Is you, is you, is you
One day at a time. One Pound @ A time. I’m improving and I hope you are too. Look at that number on that scale and vow to change it. Look at your current relationship and decide how you are going to make it better or let it go. My back is already jacked up. I need to let some shit go. I can’t keep dragging all em bags like that.