Goal Accomplished!

  
This is a picture of me at my goal weight and enjoying my reward- a haircut.

So this past weekend I came to the “end” of my weight loss journey. I started in the middle of July at 185.4lbs. It has been a journey in the true sense with many ups and downs, twists and turns, failures and victories.

The three things that really propelled me forward were:

1. Training for a race- I trained for a 5 mile race in the fall. It was so nice to have a running schedlue that could include the kids. My husband and I ran the race with the kids in strollers. It was a lot of fun and it got me down to 175lbs.

2. Focus T25- for Christmas the only thing I asked for was the Beachbody fitness program “Focus T25.” This program was perfect for me because it was working out 25 minutes a day, 5 days a week. I could fit it into my schedule without a problem. It also got ALL of my muscles working. I expected big weight loss with this program, but I only got down to 169.4lbs. This was due to me basically eating whatever I wanted. This gets me to the last piece of the puzzle.

3. iTrackBites- so after Christmas a couple of my friends started Weight Watchers and I was starting to get jealous of their success. We are poor, so starting Weight Watchers was out of the question. Once I finished my first 10-week round of T25, I knew that my eating habits were holding me back and I couldn’t bring myself to count calories. So I started to research cheap ways to count “points”- the Weight Watchers (WW) system. I found this $4 app called iTrackBites which operates under the same point counting system as WW. Since I’m still nursing all day long, I get 52 points a day. The app calculates the points of food for me, and fruits and veggies are 0 points. After using the app somewhat diligently for 6 weeks, I hit my goal of 160lbs- I was actually 160.2lbs, but that’s good enough for me! You can download the app for iOS and Android.

So there you have it. I got my long awaited haircut and I feel like myself again. Knowing that I can lose the post-baby weight has really excited me about having a third child. My husband and I plan on trying for #3 after our Bahamas trip.

Earlier I said I came to the “end” of my goal because I have extended my goal to 150lbs, which was my weight when we got married.

So to all of you working on your weight loss journies, I just want you to be encouraged by my story and to keep your eyes on your health and your goals.

Which things helped your journey profess?

[Almost] To Goal!

Hi Everyone,

i just wanted to put a quick note out there that I’ve almost hit my goal weight! When I started my weightless journey I was 185 lbs. I’m happy to say that I’m only 2 lbs shy of hitting my goal! I feel like these last couple of pounds are going to be the hardest to get rid if, mainly because I’ve mentally checked out of watching what I eat diligently.

Im hoping that once I hit my goal, I will continue to lose weight before we go on our family trip to the Bahamas. This will take me not getting lax with my eating habits.

Sorry for no pictures, I’m not blogosphere ready. I’m getting my hair cut tomorrow since I’m oh so close to my goal. (I can’t stand having all of this hair anymore.) I’ll make sure to show you the receipts tomorrow.

Are you currently on a weight-loss journey? How do you stay motivated to continue on your weight-loss journey?

Parenting Panel

Hi Everyone!

It’s been such a lonnnnng time! I have so much to fill you in on, but this post will be short, since I still have to workout before the kids wake up (more on that next week). At the beginning of this semester, my sister asked if I wanted to be on a parenting panel.  I was like, “Sure. Why not? It will get me out of the house!” So today was the day. I had everything planned out, the kids were dressed, lunch was packed, and the stroller was stowed in the van.  I put on clothes that made me not look like a mom- i.e. no yoga pants. I put on make up,which made feel like a regular person. We trekked down to the Ohio State campus, had an awkward lunch in a university building and made our way to the class.

I did take both children, so I was not sure how this was going to go. Luckily the professor had toys and such, which ViVi jumped on immediately. Sasha was perfectly happy chewing on his baby food containers.

The panel consisted of me and 4 other women who had children under 4.  The class asked questions about preparing for birth, father’s roles in parenting, disciplining, successes in parenting, and more.  It was really good for me to see other moms talk about their journeys in parenting because I don’t get to be around different parenting styles often. It was also great to be able to impart some of my “mom wisdom” on these young people.  My prayer is that my words will have some lasting effect on even just one of the students as they work with children and have children of their own. Too bad I can just talk about how I parent for a living.  It would be so easy!

On the Natural Bandwagon

It’s official. I’m on the “all-natural” bandwagon. (Not with my hair of course. That has been a part of my lifestyle for the past 5 years.) I’m talking about phasing out chemicals in my family’s everyday life. I have read countless books, blogs, and posts about how making your home chemical-free is imperative. I personally do not feel this way. In a lot of ways I like chemicals.  Take for instance my acne medication; without it my face showed how much my body was a hormonal mess after getting married and again after having ViVi. These chemicals I cherish because they gave me my self-esteem back. Don’t get me wrong, I would rather have a natural remedy, but my hormones need the big guns when it comes to my face. 

Luckily the topical meds I’m on now have done a great job of keeping my skin clear. This gives me confidence to try some natural remedies. But I’m not just trying beauty products. I’m also diving into the world of all-natural, chemical-free cleaning products.
Let me first share how I got to this place. For a while I’ve been really interested in medicinal herbs and how they treat the body. I have two success stories in my experience with herbal teas. 

The first involved my trouble trying to nurse ViVi when she was first born. My boobs are weird. I kept waiting for my breastmilk to come in, but the long, sleepless days dragged on while there was no milk in sight. I tried to complete the endless cycles on nurse-supplement-pump. That went in for 2 weeks. Then I went to herbs. Along with the annoying pumping cycle, I added taking daily supplements of fenugreek and 3 cups of a popular breastmilk-increasing tea. Just days later I started to see progress, and by the end of that week I had milk! I had enough milk to stop supplementing with formula. It was awesome and I had herbs to thank. The same thing happened after Sasha. I was prepared! I started the herbs right away and it only took 1 1/2 weeks this time around.

  
The second experience was less obvious, but to me it just as effective. While pregnant with Sasha I began to religiously drink raspberry leaf and pregnancy teas. The hope is that the herbs would help tone the uterus so that my labor contractions would be more effective and I would have an efficient labor. Well after being in labor for four drug-free hours Sasha was pushed out. In my book the teas worked.

So I got to thinking, if herbs were that effective during these two critical parts of my life as woman, they must be effective in everyday life for everyday things. Boy, did that open a can of worms! If you’ve ever searched the Internet for natural remedies, you know what I mean.

The Fam and I went to the 8th annual HoneyFest in Lithopolis, OH last weekend. It’s s great little festival we’ve been going to for 4 years now. You can taste and sample raw honey from many beekeepers in Ohio. This one vendor sparked my interest because she made raw honey face wash.  I bought a sample for $1 and I’m amazed at the results from the last 5 days. 

So naturally (no pun intended) I go to the wise Internet to try and find my own recipe. I come across this one by Modern Hippie Housewife. So then I’m like, “wow what else can I make?!” Then I saw her recipe for homemade face moisturizer. You can see it here. I will be making my own version of the face wash tonight. I’ll give you a step-by-step on that later. I made the moisturizer earlier this week. Since I have acne issues I omitted the vitamin E oil (it could clog pores) and I used sunflower seed oil instead of coconut oil( sunflower seed oil is non comedogenic.) 

I really like the face moisturizer. It makes my face shiny during the day, so I have to do a little extra blotting, but it is perfect at night. So far no breakouts from the shea butter or sunflower oil. As you can see ViVi likes it, too. She stuck her little fingers all up in there.

  
The next items I will be exploring in the natural world are:

Spray Disinfectant

Deodarant

Dishwasher detergent 

Laundry detergent

Just to name a few. I will keep you updated on what I experiment with and how they perform.

Have you started the journey to chemical-free living? What works for you?

I Survived

I was worried my trip might be like this, but luckily it wasn’t.  
So I’m terrified of flying. I’m even more terrified of flying with two lap babies. But I can confidently say that I have conquered both of these fears!

This past weekend me, my husband, and the kiddos visited my family in Atlanta, GA so I could attend my 10 year high school reunion. We knew the only way we could pull this trip off is if we flew down instead of our typical 9-12 hr drive to Georgia. So I had to face my fears and my favorite way to do that is to…plan, plan, PLAN!!!!!

After much agonizing I figured the best way to do this was to travel through the airport with Sasha in his car seat in a car seat carrier and Vivi in the Moby wrap. Once we were  on the plane, Andrew had Vivi on his lap and I had the little one. My sister was able to borrow a car seat for Vivi which was nice not to have to travel with hers (it’s so awkward to carry.) My family also snagged a cheap pack n play for Vivi to sleep in, so now they have accommodations for the rest of our kids (present and future.) The best thing was flying on Southwest Airlines. We were able to get two nonstop, round trip tickets for $312! And you get two free bags per person. So we were able to check a big suitcase for the adults, a smaller suitcase for the children, and our pack n play for $0! This kind of thing makes me happy 🙂

Going through TSA with all our gear and the kids was not fun, but luckily it is over pretty quickly.

The plane ride itself was nerve-racking for me, but only because I don’t like to fly. Andrew and Vivi had a good time looking at the clouds. Sasha was happy to be fed multiple times. 

  
Overall it was a good experience, and I would do it again. Having the whole family together made the flight much better. 

How did you pull off your family flights?

Another Update

 Double Rainbow!
Wow, it’s been a while since I have posted. Many things have happened in the last month; we bought a minivan, I went to IKEA with two little ones, my mom came to town, and I hit my first mini-goal in my weight-loss journey. I now weigh 179.4 lbs! 

  
Reaching my first goal meant I earned a pedicure! Now, my husband and sister will tell you that my feet are very neglected. I rarely paint my nails and moisturize my feet. I usually feel too busy to take care of them. I can get away with it on the winter, but not during perpetual flip-flop season.

I’m going to try and keep up my pretty feet, but I can’t guarantee it :/

I now march towards my next mini-goal: reaching 175 lbs. I can use some motivation!

Fitness Journey Update

Hey y’all!

Just a quick update of how my workouts and diet is going. I do have to say that it is going very well. I now weigh 181.6 lbs. This is a loss of 3.8 lbs. since my first post!

I’m striving for 5 workouts a week. Last week I only did 4, and if I workout tomorrow it will be 5. So I’m holding it together there. Right now I alternate between doing a postnatal DVD workout and walking for 25 min. It’s important to note that I’m only 8 weeks postpartum. This means my body is still adjusting and trying to get back to normal. I would love to be running and kickboxing to get some maximum weight loss going, but I still have to be gentle with my body. In 6 weeks I should be back to my “ass-kicking” self.

  

These DVDs are very good. I’m doing the Postnatal Bootcamp currently. It has a 12 week program that starts off easy and gets progressively harder as the weeks go on.
I also seem to be staying within my calorie limits. This is a miracle because every other time I’ve tried to count calories to lose weight, I’ve failed to the max. I use the myfitnesspal app to help me keep track of my calories. I love this app! If you haven’t used it before, it has a great database of foods along with being able to factor in calories you burn during exercising. If you are hoping to lose weight by counting calories, I highly recommend using some sort of calorie counting device to keep you accountable. It’s soooo easy to underestimate how many calories we can eat in a day.

I’m only 1.6 lbs from hitting my first short-term goal of reaching 180 lbs. and getting a pedicure. Maybe next Friday will be the day!

Which apps and workout DVDs do you like to use?