Get Off the Wagon for Good!

Hey friends! I just realized today that it has been 2 months since my last post! I knew it had been a while, but I didn’t think it was that long. Anyway, the reason for my absence hasn’t been entirely due to laziness. I’m working on a few things to make my blog better than ever! I’ve been brainstorming some ideas and working on figuring out exactly where I want to take it. I’ve also been working on some personal development which, unfortunately, has taken up quite a bit of my time as well. Hopefully I’ll have some good news to share on that soon!

Anyway, I just wanted to pop in with a quick post on something that has really been bothering me lately. I’m noticing it more and more, especially in a few health and fitness groups I’m a part of, and I just wanted to share a little encouragement with you if you’re dealing with it as well…


Has this ever happened to you…? You’re at a friend’s birthday party having a good time, and you’ve managed to stay away from the chips, soda, and sugary treats. You’re feeling pretty good about yourself, but then they bring out the cake… and, oh great, it’s your favorite! And there’s ice cream to go with it… even better!

You engage yourself in an internal debate about whether or not you should have a piece, thinking, well maybe just a tiny slice, and I’ll only take a bite and throw away the rest. Then you get your slice and take a bite, and it’s even better than you thought, so you decide to take just one more bite, and then another, and then another, and then the whole piece is gone, and it was a little bigger than you would have cut for yourself, but that’s what they gave you, and you didn’t want to be rude.

Once you realize you’ve eaten the whole thing, you start to get down on yourself. Why couldn’t you have more self-control? You should have just stopped at one bite like you planned! As you sit there mulling over how bad you were, you start feeling a little hungry, so you make your way over to the food table. Since you’ve already blown it by eating the cake, what’s a handful (or three) of chips to go with it? You’ll just start over tomorrow.

I don’t know about you, but that scenario has happened to me more times than I’m proud to admit. You make a resolution to finally get back on track, eating only good foods, not allowing any bad foods into your diet. You vow to make it to the gym every day, not missing a single one. You’ve got a plan, and this time, you’re really going to do it… until you mess up… You cave in and eat that cookie your co-worker brought in to share and throw in the towel. You miss a work out, and that’s it… what’s the point of even trying?! *Cue bingeing on Netflix while stuffing your face with all the junk food you can find.* You’ve fallen off the wagon again. It sucks and you feel guilty, but you have hope because you’ll just start over and get back on the wagon tomorrow.

Well, it’s time to stop. It’s time to dump that wagon once and for all! Burn it to the ground and say buh-bye! Because guess what… you can’t fall off the wagon if there’s no wagon to fall off of! Whatever your specific wagon looks like, it usually consists of two parts-diet and exercise. By being too rigid or trying to conform to a plan that doesn’t really work for you, you’re just setting yourself up for failure. So how do you get rid of your wagon?

Part 1-The Diet

First, it’s time to get out of the diet mentality and find what is going to work for you. If you love carbs and don’t think you could give them up forever, don’t try to go on a low-carb diet. Sure, you’ll lose weight, but you won’t be able to stick with it long term. You’ll eventually go back to carbs, and all the weight you lost will creep back on usually bringing some friends along for the ride. Ditch the diets and start making small changes that you can stick with, and you’ll be setting yourself up for a lifetime of good choices.

Second, aside from allergies, nothing should be off limits. We need to stop assigning morality to food! Food is neither good nor bad; it’s just food. Yes, there are some foods that are healthier and some that are less healthy, but that doesn’t make them good or bad, and it doesn’t make you good or bad for eating them. Depriving yourself of foods that you truly enjoy just because they are less healthy doesn’t make you good; it just makes you feel deprived! I firmly believe there is room in any diet for any food as long as you work it into your plan.

On a personal note, I’ve always fallen into assigning morality to foods. I’ve always known which foods were “good” and which ones were”bad.” I’ve tried for years to get myself to stop liking and wanting the “bad” foods to no avail. I’d force myself to stop eating them, and then I’d become obsessed with them. Obviously this is not a normal and healthy relationship with food. Over the last few months, I’ve learned to stop assigning morality to food, and it has been so freeing!

I’ve opened my mind to the fact that I can eat anything I want as long as I make room for it in my diet, and now I find that I just don’t want all the junk I used to eat as much. I don’t get anxiety when someone brings in a treat at work because I know that I can either have some or not have some, and either option is okay. I have made room in my diet to include foods that are less healthy (hello daily ice cream cone! 😉 ), and I’m actually losing weight a lot more easily!

Part 2-Exercise

Just as with food, it’s time to get out of our disordered thinking patterns when it comes to exercise. It’s time we stop thinking of exercise as a chore that we have to do in order to lose weight or as a punishment for when we missed the mark in our diet. Exercising is so good for your body in so many ways, and it’s something that we should all be doing every day in some form or another as a way to love ourselves. You just need to find what works for you.

I don’t know about you, but, personally, I hate going to the gym. I hate driving across town to work out in a room with a bunch of other people. To me, this is the worst, but I used to force myself to do it because this is what I thought serious exercising was all about. I would go for a while and then start making excuses for why I couldn’t go. Once I stopped going, I’d feel guilty about not going and get down on myself for being a failure. Then a few months ago, I rediscovered Pilates.

I used to love Pilates back when I was in high school. I’d get up early before school and get a quick 20 minute workout in because it made me feel good, and I enjoyed it. Then over the years, I stopped doing it and fell into the thinking that in order for it to really count as exercise, it had to be done in the gym. Since I hated going to the gym, I just stopped working out.

Now I’m back to Pilates, and I love it! Admittedly, when I first started out, it was hard to get back into the routine. Because it was something I used to be so good at, I felt frustrated because I couldn’t do a lot of the moves I had been able to do years ago, but I stuck with it and got over the initial hump. It turned into a habit, and now I do it because it’s something that I enjoy that makes me feel good. I’ve even gotten to the point that I look forward to getting my workout in… something I never thought would happen.

So what’s your Pilates? Maybe it’s running or Zumba or hula-hooping (or Pilates)! Sometimes it takes some trial and error to figure out what it is that you enjoy, but once you figure it out, it will be so worth it! Don’t force yourself to do something you hate because there are hundreds of different ways to get your exercise in and you just have to find the one(s) that works for you. And remember that missing one workout does not make you a failure!


Life is all about choices. When it comes to diet and exercise, you can make healthier choices and less healthy choices. When you make a less healthy choice, own your decision. Don’t get down on yourself about it. It doesn’t make you a bad person or a failure. It just means that in that moment, the less healthy option is the one that felt right for you. We can’t be perfect 100% of the time, so as long as most of your choices are on the healthier side, you’ll be doing just fine! 🙂

If you’ve struggled with getting on and falling off the wagon numerous times or finally found a way to get off of it for good, I’d love to hear from you. Feel free to share your story in the comments below to get or provide some encouragement!

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Week 4 Progress

Today’s post will be super short because, well… this week sucked. I’m basically back to where I started 4 weeks ago. I am just finally feeling better today. My cold or whatever it was completely drained my energy and congested my lungs, so there was no working out last week at all. I also had very little energy to cook, so my meals consisted of whatever was fast and easy. Not really healthy.


Week 4 Progress Update

Week 4 loss: 1.5 lb gain

Total loss: 0 lbs

NSV: None this week

Adjustments for next week: Now that I’m finally feeling better, I’m back on plan. Goal for this week is to get one serving of fruit or veggies with every meal and 8 glasses of water every day.

The Journey Begins

Today’s post is a bit long, but hopefully will be worth the read. 🙂

My 29th birthday was 4 days ago, and over the past couple weeks, I’ve really been thinking about a lot of things-where I want to be in my life, what are some goals that I want to accomplish, etc., and as far as my health, where I want to be is so far from where I am that it’s really time for a change. What better time to make a huge change than when you’re staring at the precipice of a new decade! That’s when everyone does these things, right? Well, here’s the big goal… I am going to get down to my goal weight by my 30th birthday. If I follow the safe weight loss guidelines, that’s more than 2 lbs a week, so I’m giving myself a 15 lb leeway. If I get down to within 15 lbs of my goal weight by the morning of my 30th birthday, I’m getting myself something that I’ve always wanted. What is it that I’ve always wanted? Well, you’ll just have to wait 364 days to find out!

So how am I getting there?

Well, obviously since I failed my Whole30 once again, going super strict paleo is out-for now at least. I’m really frustrated at myself for failing, but let’s be honest… I set myself up to be doomed from the beginning. My mindset was that I just needed to get through the 30 days, and then I could go back to eating whatever I wanted, which is so not the point of the Whole30. I think that’s my problem with every diet I’ve ever done; I think of it like a temporary thing that I just need to get through until I can get to whatever goal it is that I want to get to, and then when I’m done, I can have all the cake and cookies and pizza and burgers I’ve been yearning for while on my diet. Obviously that doesn’t work.

If you want lasting change, you have to make changes that are going to last. For me, cutting out all sugar and carbs is not a lasting change that I can make. The thought of never having pizza again is a very sad thought indeed! I know that I need to make some changes, but they have to be changes that I can live with for the rest of my life because I want a new, healthier life. I love food, and I love trying new things, so severely restricting what I can and can’t eat just doesn’t work for me. I like the idea of not having to count calories or macros, but cutting out huge groups of foods and trying to tell myself that I can’t have them anymore just makes me want them more. Now the big question is what will work for me? That is something I am going to have to figure out. I have a plan, but it is flexible as I think a good lifelong diet should be. Our lives and bodies are constantly changing, so sticking to the same thing forever and ever amen, probably won’t work for most people.

My starting plan is to do a sort of hybrid diet combining mostly paleo with calorie counting. My focus is going to be on getting in high quality proteins, healthy fats, and veggies. However, I’m not putting anything on the no-no list. If I feel like having yogurt for breakfast one day, I will. If someone brings in a treat at work that looks too good to pass up, I’ll let myself have some as long as it’s within moderation, and it’s not all the time. If I find a dish that is high in veggies and protein, but also has some noodles or soy sauce in it, I’ll probably make it.

The point is, I’m going to make protein, veggies and healthy fat the priority, and work the other stuff in as I see fit without being so strict and regimented about which foods are “good” and which ones are “bad.” In order to repair my relationship with food, I need to get out of that mindset altogether. No foods are inherently good or bad. It’s just food. It’s our choices regarding food that are good or bad.

Ok, it’s confession time… In order to really start myself off on the right foot, I want to be completely honest to hold myself accountable. I am at the heaviest weight I have ever been at in my life. (Well, I did lose a little weight on my Whole21, so I’m technically 5 lbs down from the heaviest weight I’ve ever been.) Things have gotten so out of hand that I am now 115 lbs overweight. 115 lbs! That’s an entire (tiny) person!

This is a very hard thing to admit, but in order to get myself to a better place, I feel I need to be open and honest with myself and make it public. Being 115 lbs overweight is not ok! Now before I get comments about how I’m fat shaming, I’m not. I actually love myself. I think I look good despite the added weight, but because I love myself, I want to make choices that love my body. Carrying around all this extra weight makes my body work harder than it should, and it’s given me some health issues that are undeniably caused by my weight. (Hello asthma, back pain, and fatigue!) If you are overweight, confident in your body, and not having any health issues, good for you! If you are experiencing health issues, I would encourage you to take care of it, but ultimately it’s your life, and the only one who has any right to say anything about it is you. No one has the right to make comments about your life or your body unless they’re living in it.

Alright, off my soapbox now… Anyway, to have a truly healthy lifestyle, you need to not only eat well, but also be active. I think I’ve been doing pretty well with this side of things over the last several weeks.  I have been working out pretty regularly. For the last 6 weeks (aside from the week I hurt my back and was unable to work out), I’ve worked out at least 3 times a week. This is my longest streak in… I don’t even know.

I think the trick with my new motivation is twofold. The first thing is that I’ve always thought of exercise as something I had to do in order to lose weight. It was never something that I wanted to do, and I would always find excuses not to do it. But that just means that I was trying the wrong workouts.

Some people love going to the gym and spending hours on the treadmill and lifting weights. I hate it. It’s the most boring thing I could think of to do with my time. What I love though is Pilates and yoga and dancing. I also like fitness games like the Wii fit and my old Xbox Kinect games. To me, these things aren’t boring. I actually enjoy doing them, and it’s something that I even look forward to. When I was trying to force myself to go to the gym, I went for a few weeks, and then I stopped going. Now that I’m doing Pilates in the mornings, I actually want to do it.

I used to feel like I needed so much motivation to get myself moving, but now that I am back to doing something I enjoy, I’m really not worried about this side of the equation. I am going to step it up and work in more work outs, but I’m just going to keep up the workouts that I’m doing. 🙂 As with the food plan, I’m sure that as my body changes, I will need to change and make things more challenging, but for now, I’m going to stick with what I’m doing until it stops working.

So there you have it… I have a goal of losing 115 lbs in 362 days, and I am determined to make it happen! Since I did my initial weigh in on a Wednesday, I will make that my check in day. I hope you’ll keep checking in on my progress and cheering me along! 🙂

Before, never again

Here is my before. I will never look like this again!

Whole30 Day 1… Take 3

Hey there, I know it’s been a reaaaaally long time since my last post-about 4 1/2 months, but who’s counting? 😉 Well, all I can really say is life got crazy, I got lazy, and I felt like I was spiraling out of control. I know in my last post I mentioned I was going to turn things around, and I did… for about a week. Then I was right back into my old habits. It’s really hard for me to admit, but right now I’m 10 lbs heavier than my previous heaviest weight-a weight I swore I would never get back to. Well, obviously, I did. And then some.

Now here’s where I could beat myself up, tell myself how much of a loser I am for getting back here, but what’s the point in that? I screwed up. I made a long series of mistakes. Am I happy about where I am right now? Absolutely not! But what is it going to accomplish if I dwell on my failure? Absolutely nothing! It took me a while, but I’m finally to that point where I’ve had enough. None of my clothes fit me anymore, I’m tired all the time, I feel like crap, and frankly I’m just really unhappy.

A couple months ago, I signed up for Weight Watchers again, and I lost about 5 lbs on it in the first 2 weeks. I was really excited about my progress, but then I fell off the wagon, and gained it right back. I tried really hard to reign myself in, but I have a sugar demon raging inside me, and I found it really hard to keep within my daily points allotment when I was allowing myself to continue to have treats. Even if I planned ahead and counted the points, I would always go overboard. So I finally made the decision that I needed to do another Whole30+ to get rid of my cravings.

That brings me to this weekend. I decided I was going to do a November Whole30 and start it right away on November 1. Well… we ended up not going to the grocery store, so I didn’t have any Whole30 foods for day 1. I wasn’t really too worried about it though because I figured I’d just start the next day. I didn’t really have my plan in place anyway, so day 1 would really have just been winging it. Anyway, on Sunday, I sat down and got my meal plan together and went grocery shopping, so I was all set for the week ahead.

Then yesterday, I had a really off morning. I didn’t sleep very well the previous night, so I slept in a little, and my whole morning routine got thrown off. I had a meal in my crockpot in the fridge just waiting to go into the base and cook away for my delicious dinner that evening, and of course… I forgot it in the fridge! Luckily, my sister was still home, so I called her, and she was able to get it going for me. After hanging up with her, I remembered another thing I had forgotten that morning… my breakfast and lunch for the day! I tried rolling with it at first and got some eggs from the caterer for breakfast, and I was planning on getting a salad with some grilled chicken from somewhere for lunch, but 2 eggs was not enough of a meal, and I was starving by 10:30. I didn’t think I’d make it until lunch, and by that point, I was not making good choices, so I went to the vending machine and got a Pop-Tart.

I was a little upset with myself that I couldn’t even make it the first day, but, honestly, I got over it pretty quickly. I was already having a bad morning, so I tried not to beat myself up too much. Luckily it was only day 1, and I had already delayed my start date, so one more day was not the end of the world.

That brings me to today, and I am happy to say that I have successfully made it through Whole30 day 1! However, if today is any indication of how the rest of it is going to go, it is going to be very challenging… I had been in such a junk food rut for so long that I am having some serious cravings. Visions of cookies and cupcakes were dancing through my head all day, and I could have killed for a diet Pepsi! I just need to remind myself though that these are only temporary. They are going to get much worse before they get better, and I just need to get through them.

So here’s what I ate for day 1…

  • Breakfast-Slow Cooker Cherry Apple Pork Loin from Once a Month Meals and a big bowl of frozen veggies with a little olive oil and some Mrs. Dash
  • Lunch-A can of tuna in olive oil, drained, on a bed of romaine, drizzled with olive oil and vinegar and a bit of Mrs. Dash and a honeycrisp apple (the apple was on the side-not part of the salad… That would be gross. 😉 )
  • Dinner-Stuffed Acorn Squash from Once a Month Meals. The squash took longer than anticipated to cook, so I’m satisfying my hunger with a handful of kalamata olives while I wait. 🙂

Finally, as any good fitness/health buff will tell you, nutrition is only one piece of the puzzle, so I’ve also been getting my butt in gear with morning workouts. A friend and I have been doing workout videos together in the mornings at work. This week we started the Blogilates beginner’s calendar. Our plan is to do a modified version of the calendar since I don’t have a good place to do the workouts on the weekends. We were supposed to start on Monday with day 1, but my workout buddy has been sick, and I had such an off morning, we decided to start today instead. She ended up being sick again, but I made myself go in and work out anyway, and man did I forget how challenging even her beginner workouts are! I have to stop halfway through all of the exercises to take a rest! It makes me feel even more out of shape than I am, but I guess the bright side of it is that I will get stronger, and the workouts will feel a lot easier. That’s what I’m hoping anyway!

I feel like a broken record sometimes. I know that I have tried numerous times to get myself back into gear. I’ve had one successful Whole30 and numerous failed ones. I’ve failed at diet after diet and exercise regimen after exercise regimen, but this time it’s different. I can feel that it’s different. I felt the snap inside me that said “enough!” Instead of going into this half-heartedly and hoping for the best, I made a concrete plan. I have goals in place, and all my stats are prominently displayed, along with my current “before” photos, on my wall where I will see them multiple times a day and be reminded of what I’m doing and why I’m doing it. This time, I know I will make some big changes that are going to last.

2 Weeks of Lazy

My days seem to be getting away from me lately. It has happened on more than one occasion where I’ll be talking about something that happened “just the other day” only to realize it was actually a couple months ago. I don’t know what it is… Maybe because nothing really exciting or out of the ordinary has been happening lately? Who knows… Anyway, I kept thinking it had only been a couple days since my last post, but when I logged in this morning, I realized it has actually been 2 weeks! How did that happen?!

For some reason for the last couple weeks, I have been feeling super lazy. Every day when I came home from work, I had a list of things I wanted to get done, but it was like I’d step foot in the door, and all my ambition would go away. I felt tired and bored, so I’d scrape something together for dinner, and then plop down on the couch for some TV and internet surfing. It’s been kind of frustrating because the Whole30 is supposed to be giving me boundless energy, isn’t it?

I’m guessing it’s probably something to do with laziness begets laziness. I allowed myself a couple days to just relax and do nothing because I was feeling exhausted, and then that became my routine. I was ok with it at first, but after a while, it felt like something I really didn’t want but couldn’t help. After almost 2 weeks, I finally told myself that enough was enough, and I made a goal of accomplishing only one thing on my to do list, and that was enough to get me back into gear. My one thing ended up being two things, and then the following night, I accomplished a few more things. Friday night was laundry night, so I did all of that and came home and put it all away instead of leaving it in the basket. Then yesterday morning before I left, I cleaned my house and finally put away all my Christmas decorations. I feel so much better now that I’ve actually accomplished something instead of wasting my time. Hopefully I’ll keep up the momentum!

Since I was feeling so lazy lately, I didn’t keep up with my moving at least 10 minutes a day goal. I haven’t really done any intentional exercise since Monday two weeks ago. I’m going to have to restart the Blogilates beginner calendar. That’s ok though. I realize that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. I’m not a failure for not doing 10 minutes a day. I’m just going to pick it right back up and move on.

I have been keeping up with eating Whole30 though! I’m on day 25 and still going strong! I’ve had a couple moments where I ate something and then realized there was added sugar in it, but I decided in both of those instances that I wasn’t going to start over. It was an honest mistake, and I’m over my sugar cravings, so the tiny amount I had didn’t send me to the nearest candy aisle. If it was something else that could be an irritant, I might consider it, but because it was just sugar, I don’t think it really matters. If it happened earlier in my Whole30 when I was still beating my sugar dragon into remission, that might be another story… I just read a post on the Whole30 site that talked about starting over, and I think that for me not starting over is the right decision.

Other than my laziness, I’ve been feeling pretty great! I can tell I’m not losing weight as quickly as I did on my first Whole30, and that’s kind of frustrating, but I have still lost quite a bit already. I am sure it’s due to the fact that I have been eating way more fruit than I did last time. That’s going to be a new goal for me going forward… well it is more like a new conviction to a goal I already set for myself. I’m going to only eat one serving of fruit a day and make sure I eat at least two servings of vegetables with every meal, one of which will be green.

On an unrelated note… I’ve been getting the urge again lately to go through and get rid of a ton of stuff. I did that last summer, and it felt awesome. I was really good at not bringing anything new into the house for a while, but then the junk started to creep its way back in. After I cleaned yesterday morning, I felt kind of frustrated because, while it looked better than it did before I started, it still didn’t look truly clean because of all the clutter. I think I might make that a project. Every night I’m going to go through one room and get rid of everything I don’t truly need.

So that’s what I’ve been up to the last couple weeks… nothing too exciting. Anyone else feeling lazy lately? How do you kick yourself out of a lazy slump?