Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas!!!

Well Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, & All that jazz! Can you believe 2009 is almost over? OMG where did the time go? I have no idea but its kinda scary but exciting. I am heading to The Bahamas (Nassau) with my Mom & Sister for Christmas. I am looking forward to the get-a-way! Last year we did a cruise and I had a blast but I did gain like 7 pounds in 5 days I don't know how I did that buttttttt you do the math. It can happen! Let's see two workouts, hot coco with ice cream (yeah I said it!!), 24 hour pizza bar, midnight buffet.. as my sister would say & all kinds of foolishness! It was fun however weight loss is a slippery slope to use a legal term (lol) once you give up an inch 5 pounds magically appears! No lie.

My Mom & sister already left and went on a 2 day cruise down to The Bahamas and I will just fly down and meet them there. I could have gone but thought nahhh not this year its too much temptation. I finally broke the plateau and hit 70 pounds loss on Monday. How? I dunno the body is weird! But there is scientific literature to suggest taking time off from working out and varying your training can help the body not feel so out of sorts and therefore you will drop weight. Even body builders have a "free" day and take time off during the off season to stay on their game.

So that's 70 pounds in 11 months. Which is 6.3 pounds a month. Respectable. My goal was 10 pounds a month with 2 pounds loss per week in 52 weeks that would be 104 in a year. I will be off by a few but I am not stressing it. I mean I am because I was promised a trip any where in the world if I lost 100 pounds in a year and I have Fiji or China on my mind. But my Daddy is a push over lol if I hit 85-90 I am sure he will come thru. A/w to be honest I am happy with my progress. I think people might say well duh why wouldn't you be but I am such a goal person. I set up strict deadlines and I make things happen when I say if not sooner but as I reflect and cut myself some slack I feel great, look great, and well I've worked hard. Still got work to do and I am ok with that. I am still not a die hard "nothing taste a good as thin feels" type of girl I love food lol but I can see how balance is the name of the game and I am going to keep striving to get there.
My goals are to workout every day the beach is right there, and I can swim like a fish. I found a Yoga retreat that does drop in classes for $10 or a whole day with meals for $45! I love the email it was entitled "Dear Blessed Self" Gotta experience that! Oh and they pick you up via boat so they must be on their own little island! I am excited! There is also a parade of sorts for a holiday called Boxing Day which is a Junknaoo (think carnival) event so floats and what not and apparently it BEGINS at midnight by gun shot...Sooo Caribbean! I love it!
Anyyyhowwww I am wishing you all a blessed holiday!!!
But before I go I will remind you all that Jesus and I share the same birthday! However since its become a tradition to celebrate His birth in December I won't trip HOWEVER June 17th yall need to get them trees back out! LOL No but for real we need a revolution!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Dear Future Me

OK so I am an Oprah fan like everyone else!Even if you find her annoying, you have to respect her! I liked Oprah from way back though and as she has grown I am really amazed by her. I mean to become the richest woman in the world by helping people and being vulnerable yourself is such a win/win because when you help others you REALLY help yourself as well...and apparently you can get the President elected. That's based on public trust if you think about it; that's real power. I respect Oprah because she works hard to stay in shape. I am not saying I do not respect people who are naturally thin who workout to stay toned but there is a HUGE difference! If you are blessed *(and be sure it is a blessing) to have a fast/efficient metabolism and you workout hats off because skinny people drop dead of heart attacks too because the crap they eat still has an effect on the inside. But as someone who appreciates Oprah journey I really applaud her. I loved her book with Bob Green The Best Life Ever. Because her journey clearly illustrates that battling obesity is no joke. As she often says 1) She hates exercise by it is a necessary evil 2) If there was a magic pill she'd have it by now *re: she's the richest woman in the world!
So the best EVEN Oprah can do is wake up every day at 4am and get her workout on and watch her diet...Well then...we carry on...just without her billions. But that does go to show even with all that money, and a fab job, and great shoes this is her struggle and all the money, fame, and greatness does not trump achieving a lifelong goal like weight loss. I get that.

Anyway slightly off topic, the purpose of this blog entry was to talk about something I saw in the Oprah magazine. A website called Future Me. Its basically a website where you can send yourself an email sometime in the future. I love the idea. Although there are a ton I'd love to send to the Past me (lol) this Future Me activity I think is cool. Here are some of the ones I will do:

Congrats you are at goal!
Training for the Iron girl pep talks
Happy 35th Birthday!
Best wishes on the Iron Girl
Congrats you are AN IRON GIRL!
Several Affirmations

Try it out! You can make them public or private. I have enjoyed reading some of the public ones! With the New year approaching I can say I feel a sense of accomplishment that my 2009 weight loss resolutions became my end of 09/2010 results!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Workouts vs. An Active Social Life

These few weeks have been more challenging to my workouts than I anticipated! So many parties, so little time... to workout. I had plans to hit the gym 2 additional times this week but I had a meeting last night, I have another tonight, and Thursday was the workout day I planned and I just got invited to a Happy Hour that I want to go to, & Friday I have a dinner party and then we are back to Saturday and I have my Personal Trainer again! Where does time go!?

Excuses...but its the holidays and I am a busy person. I have been up and down the same 3 pounds so I will take that as a victory considering I have not been as faithful as I was in the fall.

My workout session on Monday was great but I was really dragging! I took a rest day Sunday and my body was in no mood for the foolishness with Charles! But my Trainer saw I was dragging and in and effort "to help" we did my strength training than cardio. Please*insert my rolling eyes here* He gave me some crazy exercises and they were hard and my body is now in pain. I am feeling muscles I didn't know existed. Good stuff! See that's the exercise crack talking...can barely stand talking about good stuff lol
I don't know what to say about this hectic holiday season except I will stick with my trainer and not beat myself up about missing the extra workouts and watch the extra calories all around the office.
I told myself I would make more of an effort to have a balanced life and I am working on that. I am busy but I really do not socialize much outside of AKA so I changed that this year got in involved with Monumental, doing more happy hours, and parties and meeting lots of new people and staying connected with others. I am enjoying it A LOT! I mean I met Doug E. Fresh how sweet is that for a girl from the Bronx!? Pretty sweet I would say! My sister has been a bit..annoyed with me she was wondering if I was passing up all these good parties for the last 9 years that I have been in Baltimore...I had to admit that I had...but no mas!
I am also an avid traveler I have been to Scotland, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Mexico, & a few islands but lately most of the traveling I do is for AKA so this year and next I am taking "just because" trips. I am going to The Bahamas for Christmas totally last minute but I am looking forward to spending Christmas on the beach again this year (last year I was in Mexico). I am going to Carnival in Trinidad in February and I worked it out to have two 1 day layovers in Panama!!! Whooo hooo!! I can't wait! Only to find out Panama has Carnival the same weekend! What fun! ****New motto for the New Year is "Getting it in, in 2010!" lol
Aside from that I have an AKA conference at home and one in NY and another in St. Louis in the summer. So 2010 will be busy as usual but I am keeping my trainer he has been soooooo worth the money! I am still pushing towards the last 35 pounds and I am giving myself permission to not go crazy to lose weight between now and New years. My size 16 dresses are getting loose and I fit into my sister's hand me down size 13/14 Apple Bottom jeans! Ok they are not ready for the world but they got on dang-nab-it and buttoned! I did not attempt to sit down however lol
I am still cleaning out the closet. Anything over a size 18 is just about gone. I donated 2 dresses I wore as Maid of Honor in two weddings I was in. The Soror in the Xi Tau chapter did a clothing drive and they were donated to an organization called The Priceless Gown Project that collects formal wear for under privileged young girls. I also have a friend who is collecting sorority paraphernalia or as we call it in the South "'nalia" and in the North "para" (lol) I have several 2x and 3x shirts, some I have never worn that I plan to give to him as well! The cleaning out is therapeutic kinda like getting rid of my old unhealthy self.
********When you lose weight DON'T keep the clothing let them go! I think its sends a single to your subconscious that the weight loss is temporary and you'll need them again. I've done that before. Not this time! Its all gotta go!
A/w I'll be checking in again soon!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Fit & Fab during the Holidays

The people in the know say that most Americans tend to gain an average of 10 pounds during the holiday eating vortex (the time between Thanksgiving & New Years).I said 10 POUNDS!!! Once upon a time I was included in that count, heck planned on it! This year I told myself I would not focus on food but on friends and family during this holiday season. I also made a sizable investment in 24 personal training sessions so I would have no excuses for missing workouts during this holiday season. My Monday workout was a killer! I mean all of my workouts are but Monday's was really a challenge its like Charles took every exercise I hate with a passion and but them all together! I walked out dizzy! Good stuff! I fused of course (I think he likes that) but I did notice I could move faster, push harder, and I was more flexible. That's a good thing. Think about it the most challenging moves merged into 1 workout... WOW!
Goals for the next 4 weeks:
1) Continue personal training 2x a week
2) Take at least 2 additional exercise classes or use treadmill (2 hours)
3) Go to Weight Watchers meetings (don't wanna look like a newbie in January lol)
4) Enjoy the holiday with friends and family not food!
5) Lose 10 pounds
*Notice I did not go on a rant about making low fat version of your favorite things etc. I will be honest low fat/low calories tends to mean I eat more so I indulge moderately of the real thing rather than going for the next best thing or I avoid it all together. This is not meant to discourage anyone from doing that in fact WW has some great alternatives but just practice portion control. A word to the wise is sufficient! Enjoy yourselves! Here's an article 5 Tips To Avoid Weight Gain ~ Some good tips! There's still time :-)

Friday, December 4, 2009

Trust Me Imm A Lawyer!

My Girls! The Old SAO Domestic Violence Crew there will never be another!
They are like family they laugh with me, encourage me, exercise with me, pray for me, tell me when I act a fool & when I look fly! What more can you ask for! :-)

Ok WOW the months are flying by! I mean really flying! Its already December 2010 the New Year is around the corner! Being in a pre-new years reflective mood & coming off of a high from partying last night and getting loads of compliments I am very grateful that I am taking this time to make myself a priority.
When January 2009 came around my mantra was "Fine in 2009" I set my S.M.A.R.T. Goals and I told myself that, that all or nothing, black or white, personality quirk I have that tends to serve me well in other areas of my life, was not going to work when it came to my weight loss and fitness goals. I would be modest and reasonable with myself and my workouts and my expectations. That did not mean I would take it "easy" I went and found the best Personal Trainer I could in the State! Charles is no joke! But in the past I would go overboard. For example a few years ago I lost a good bit of weight and rather than keeping that pace I amped up my workouts to 6 days a week 2-3 hours a day and I had no social life I was always running out of work or mad when i would get stuck in court my sole focus was going to the gym. I pushed myself harder and faster and well I just know now that that isn't how you live a healthier lifestyle. Ultimately that was/is my goal which is why I started this blog. The goal wasn't to see how much I could workout, I took on a "Work smarter, not harder" attitude. And its working I am slowly getting to my goal weight.

To be honest my goal was 10 pounds a month, I am at about 6 almost half but amazingly I am ok with that. I told myself not to get caught up in the weekly ups and downs (which is why i love WW but don't go every week) looking at the big picture, 6 pounds a month x 11 months is 66 pounds and that's nothing to be upset at. I am wavering between 65 and 70 pounds loss since January. Every day my scale says something different but that's okay I will wait that out too. I will just keep doing what I am doing get my workouts in and watch my intake.

Last night I wore another size 16 dress this was by Jones New York.... I love the dress (Thanks Mom!) and a lot of other people did too apparently lol

Last thought-Something I have realized is I can't live in the gym. I have too much to do. I do dedicate each Monday & Saturday to personal training and I usually do 2 hours and the rest of my exercise comes from a combination of taking maybe 2 more classes a week (socarobics & Chizel It) or being more active in general. So the challenge this weekend is:

1) Big Party last night (got in around 2am)
2) Gala tonight 8-12am
3)Alpha Kappa Alpha Chapter meeting @ 11am
4) Skating with Sorors @ 4pm

Harold Ford, Jr. & Me

So how does a busy woman on the move work in weight loss and exercise?

1) Well I'll be honest...I trade calories/points. Don't look at me like that! (lol) I know bad business but I have liquor so I eat less and I find more time to be social than worrying how much crab dip I can have depending on the made up point value in my head. I know that vodka has a set point value/calorie value crab dip does not! Keep in mind I had a sensible meal before I left for the party (baked potato with low fat sour cream and my premade Turkey meatball). So I am not advocating drinking instead of eating (the whole day anyway lol oh ok)

2) I keep my exercise appointment. My blackberry says 9:30 I am with Charles so there it is. I get a good hour in and this works well because I do not have to wake up early after partying tonight!

3) Chapter meeting is at 11am because we have a holiday celebration at a restaurant so while I'll be cutting it close I'll still make the meeting with a quick change artist impersonation.

4) I have ACTIVE events I am going to- I did some dancing last night even sweated my hair out! (I swear I need botox!) Tonight more dancing! Tomorrow its a skating event with the Sorors! Skating burns a lot of calories I will of course deduct the minutes I spend on the floor on my booty! lol

So I will report back with pictures of course! :-) I have a cute outfit in mind and the funny thing is the jeans (by Michael Kors) never fit me (I've had them for maybe 2 years now) I tried them this week and they are getting big! Glad I didn't miss my window!

Thanks again for all the pep talks, emails, and text messages and other forms of support! It is greatly appreciated and definitely helps to keep me inspired along this journey!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Alcohol & Exercise

Alcohol & Exercise...Just Don't Do It!
I went out last night and had really just 1 drink ok so 16 oz. of it and I don't know what was in it problem #1! I went home felt fine and didn't stir again until 7:30am! I wake up faithfully at 5am everyday! WTH?! Anyway had my trainer today and thankfully he asked to move the time back I was like "BET! Let's make it 10!" So I slept in and missed WW :-( but finally made it to the gym at 10am. I was dragggggginggggggggg! I am glad I got the workout in rather than canceling it but this is a lesson I learned a few months ago. Alcohol will mess you up the next day in terms of your concentration and energy level, I was really on E (empty) but it was a good workout all the same. I am glad I have nothing else on my agenda today :-) I am reading a good book and doing some de-stressing with art and just getting some clarity on other areas of my life and I am feeling really great.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Giving Thanks

Yesterday was Thanksgiving and it was a nice quiet day with a good friend. Didn't do a bunch of cooking because I am on a mission. Even more than that the food is secondary to the spirit of the season which is to express gratitude and thanks for the wonderful things we have experienced. I am getting refocused not that I lost focus but I did take a lil break which seems to have agreed with my body because I actually lost 2 pounds! I don't weigh in officially @ Weight Watchers until tomorrow morning but if we are where I think we are I'm down 65 pounds. WOW! I have a Dr's appt. on Dec. 7th and we'll see then but I am excited.

The weight I saw this morning is the lowest weight I have been since 1998 over A DECADE ago! And that was the result of a really bad crash diet and I lost 30 pounds in 30 days!
Needless to say that lasted like 1 minute and I been gaining every since.

I made it to the gym this morning and I had a great workout. I can really feel the difference in my ability to move, go longer, go harder, and get less winded. That's maybe the second best thing about losing weight you can feel the changes in your body in addition to seeing them. I have a beauty mark on my belly and its actually moved closer to my belly button since I have lost so much weight lol hilarious! The best thing about losing weight of course is getting healthier.

A/w I have my trainer tomorrow morning and I am actually looking forward to going hard. I have some...stress... I need to work out and this morning cracked that tip of the stress iceberg. Working out is better than eating the stress away that's for sure. But that's a process Lord knows I did some emotional eating yesterday. It was just popcorn but I was eating it because I was upset not because I was hungry. Bad habits I am wrking on breaking....A/w I am sooooo thankful for Chizel It & my personal trainer Charles; he is a God sent. I am moving forward and I am focusing in on getting this extra 100 pounds...ohhh... excuse me it just an extra 35 extra pounds now off of me! :-) Hope you all had a happy & healthy Thankgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Back to Work

Well my Trainer is back! Yeahhhhh!!! I missed him! I let him know I did not even step foot into the gym while he was gone. He was taken aback but then said "Well it is good to take a week off quarterly to give your body a chance to fully recover." *wiping the sweat from my brow* I was up a pound & then down a pound. So I am even steve right now. I had a great workout! I am feeling good with Turkey Day coming I am really in a spirit of giving thanks! I am planning on doing a 5k race and then chilling at home and getting ready to move forward into the new year!

The world is mine!

Nov. 09 New York City

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I think that I shall never know...

This has been a busy week...Some of it good, some of it bad, and some of it just plain ole sad.

Its been 7 whole day and I have not worked out! I know, I know I had big talking going on about MY TIME on Saturday it just didn't pan out. My trainer is away and will not be back until Monday and I had great intentions but I really don't see it being possible to fit it in until he returns. I may have a Yoga date on Sunday though so we'll see.

But I look up and its Thursday....Where does the time go? Things are really crazy right now. I got 2 really sad pieces of news about 2 sorority sisters; one passed away and another was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma. :-(

The Wake is tonight and I'm already a wreck. Soror Barbara was a sweet and wonderful Soror. This is the first chapter member that I know who has passed away in the 5 years I've been a member and the 3.5 years before that when I began working with the chapter in the community. I just don't deal with death well at all. Mostly because I haven't been exposed to much of it. I know its a question of my faith and I guess I need to learn to deal with that one on one with the Lord.

The other Soror who was diagnosed with cancer; I am very close to and well its just heartbreaking because she is so young (30 years old). Cancer is such a grown up diease to me. I don't know how I would deal with that. But she seems to be doing well under the circumstances its just mind-blowing to me. I don't really do emotions but this makes me so sad and I felt so helpless. Another feeling I don't deal with well. But then it hit me, I can do something I can be a friend, a soror, a sister and ironically the day before I heard about her condition, I decided to join Team in Training to do the Iron Girl Tri in August. Their efforts are done to raise awareness about and funds for Leukemia & Lymphoma!!! So now this Iron Girl is so much more personal than before. I like that. She will be a good source of motivation when I am in the open water trying to swimwith 3,000 other Tri-ers

Anyhoo...I really don't think I'll make it to the gym this week. I will start fresh Monday when my trainer comes back. I can't say I don't feel like it because to be honest since getting on my workout kick I never really feel like it but I am in a somber mood and while working out may help release some endorphins to lighten my mood I am not running into the gym. Like I said yoga is TBA on Sunday.

I think that I shall never know
Another love that thrills me so,
Dwells in my heart by night, by day
As does my love for A.K.A.
I think that I shall never fear
Where hears are loyal, true and dear.

Secure I am at work, and play
Of such are these the A.K.A.
I think when I shall come to die
There’ll be no need for fear of sigh,
For if I’ve been an A.K.A.
Life owes me naught I’ve lived my day

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

While the Trainer is away....

Spring 08 Nov 09

Beside the shape of my face the biggest difference I see is I look a lot younger

So Charles is gone on a week long cruise with some other folks from Chizel It! Yesterday was the first Monday I didn't work out since...August. Shameful I know. A wholllleeee day and not one thought about working out. I soooo see why celebrities pay big bucks for full time personal trainers! Its so worth it. All is not lost I do not plan to blow the entire week off that's for sure.

This is where goal setting is important.
Monday-Rest Day
Tuesday-@ 6:30 pm I have my first official Team in Training for the Iron Girl Triathlon
Wednesday- @ 6:30 pm I have a Junior League meeting
Thursday- Free space so insert 5:45 "Socarobics" & 6:30 "Chizel It"
Friday-Free space insert 5:45 "Abs like Mine" class with some dude named Tyrone. I watched the class a few weeks ago dude is sick but I am gonna try it.
Saturday- Day Trip to NYC with my friend Tosha to see the Madeleine Albright Pin Collection entitled "Read My Pins" at the Museum of Arts & Design
More links about the pins!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Somethings Gotta Give...and that's ok!

I am super busy today. I know what's new? lol I am blessed in a sense to not be married and not have children at this time because that means I can focus on my goals without the guilt or divided time some women in my age group have must deal with. Its just me and my stuff for now anyway. I have this huge goal and I can dedicate 110% of my efforts to it. Yeah right. I think that's a common misconception that single women have all this free time. To be honest I don't know how I will fit a husband and children into my life but like minded women I know and mentors I have assure me when the right person comes along I will make time and well kids force you to make time so it will work its self out. Cool. Because for real I am at a loss as to how I can add anything more to my life lol
In the meantime I have a hectic schedule and I have basically created this blog to prove anyone can make time to workout and strive for a healthier lifestyle. My lesson to myself is I am important. My goals are important. That size 16 dress is important lol so my workouts are a priority no matter what.

My schedule today is crazy! I have a sorority meeting (2.5 hours), I am keeping my personal training appointment smack dab in the middle of a crazy day (1hr), I have to get my hair done (2.5 hours), make up (1hr), & nails and toes done (1.5hrs) for a wedding that starts at 6pm and then onto a birthday party that starts at 9pm. I am already tired! lol But it going to be fun and I am looking forward to both celebrations. If you do some quick math that's 8-9hours I need and my day starts at 10am with that meeting (never mind having to send ebay stuff off at the post office before any of this). Uggghhh that might wait until Monday!

Live, Love, Laugh! is my motto...Life is good and I enjoy it!

Realistically, unless all the stars align I won't be getting somethings done but that's okay. I have a curling iron, nail polish, and I do an a okay job with my makeup. The top priority is getting to my personal trainer. He & the crew at doing a week long cruise so we will workout 3 times this week. Initially, I was supposed to go to Spokane, Wa. so it worked out but now that trip is off so I have to make sure I get to the gym and get my workouts in while he is away. But I will deal with that plan in time, just going to focus on today's stuff and be happy!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Motivation Is Overrated

Today's topic is why motivation is overrated in exercising & striving to living a healthier lifestyle. I have received a few emails, post, calls, text messages about how motivated I am and how people wish they had a pinkie toe drop of my motivation. I will be honest and say I think motivation is highly overrated.

Most of you who know me well like my family, people who I went to high school with, college, law school, and/or worked with me or for me know I am a go getter. I have been this way my whole life. If I set I goal, I go after it, tackle it, pin it down, get my 3 count, drop the mic and leave...End scene. That's how I do. I am happy to say that life has just worked out realllly well for me over the years. Now I recognize I am truly blessed and God looks out for me even when I don't deserve it but I truly believe in the bible verse "Faith without works is dead." I work hard and I enjoy the outcome of the hard work I put in.

I can honestly say I have achieved almost every goal I set for myself thus far. Everything from college, to various scholarships I have received, to getting into law school, to passing the Maryland State bar exam on the first try, to buying my first home, to my jobs, to my sorority, etc... Check, check, check...
I am a work in progress so its not like I am "done." I do have some other aspirations in terms of Alpha Kappa Alpha and Junior League and of course the ever popular world domination plot are goals that are underway.
With that being said, the only goal I have found the most challenging to secure is weight loss. I have tried over the years and I have had some success but I always seem to get distracted by some other goal that takes off a lot faster. I am all about immediate gratification. In January of 2009 I found myself very frustrated not motivated about my health. I was on pre-hypertension meds, I was at an all time high in terms of my weight and clothing size, and I was unhappy & frustrated about where I was. This however was in a bubble like it has always been because everything else was going GREAT! Great job, great friends, great trips, great life! And not that fake I am dying inside but put on a happy face great life either. I am happy, I enjoy life, I am seeing the world, I am making good money, I am coming home to MY house, I have supportive friends and family members....Life is good... But just this weight...that frustrated me.

I think the real issue I had with this goal was that this was the ONE thing totally in my control. I mean I am fabulous but in everything else someone had a hand in it whether it was an admissions counselor, a scholarship committee, the 2/3rd vote from my would be sorority sisters, the approval for my mortgage or offer on the townhouse I bought, etc. you get the picture. But what I eat and how much I work out...that's totally on me. Do you know how frustrating it is to pass a 2 day, 6 hour each day, bar exam in one shot and not pass by a McDonalds? Losing weight is hard. But as someone on the Weight Watchers messaged board always says "Losing weight is hard, being over weight is hard...pick your hard."

Back to the message....
In looking up what frustrated means I found " defeated: disappointingly unsuccessful. Frustration is an emotional response to circumstances where one is obstructed from arriving at a personal goal. The more important the goal, the greater the frustration. It is related to anger and disappointment. Sources of frustration may be internal or external."

That's about right. Motivation was no where in the picture. The fact of the matter is my metabolism sucks. Probably always has, might be genetic, but whatever the case this isn't a level playing field for me. Some people will always be thin no matter what they eat...some people will always be bigger no matter what they eat...The only thing that can balance the scales of injustice is EXERCISE. For me, weight loss without exercise doe not work. So I knew going into this I had to do it.

I set a plan in action and it didn't happen over night. I took bits and pieces and built up some momentum. Between Jan and August I lost 28 pounds I wasn't ready for the full on Weight Watchers program I just needed to make small changes before I got back into that. The fact of the matter is I am very competitive and that can work for you or against you in weight loss groups. In August I rejoined Weight Watchers and told myself it was time to get another personal trainer. I really didn't want to spend the money, I will be honest and say that, but I knew it was a good way to turn my sporadic workouts into sure nuff workouts. I committed to going 2 days a week until Christmas. I told myself anything above and beyond those 2 days would be fat free gravy. I joined Chizel It when one of my Sorors told me about their Socarobics class. I knew Charles Harris from television and the other events like when Barack Obama came to Baltimore on the way to DC (he did the warm up for the crowd) and I havent looked back since.

In about 10 months I am down about 60 pounds (depends on the day) so that's about 6 pounds month. My goals was 2 pounds a week/10 pounds a month but I'll take what I can get. I was wearing a women's size 26/28 and I am now in 18s and most importantly I feel better. I set an intial goal of 100 pounds we'll see where that gets me. If need be I will re-evaluate my final goal.

All of this was to show you motivation really did not factor into my plan to get healthier only fustration and despration did. I needed to change to imporve the quality of my life. Trust and believe if I could still eat fast food every day and have as many cheesecakes as I could hold anytime I wanted I would be doing it! With a smile on my face in fact. In fact, I hate people (YES HATE) who can eat without a care in the world and look as if they are the picture of health. But that's another rant for another day about what being healthy "looks" like.

A/w before I leave you I wanted to share what I read about motivation being overrated. One piece stood out called Motivation Is Overrated By Bonnie Pfiester it said: " You cannot rely on feeling motivated to help you reach your goals. It is a plan and total commitment that gets you to your goal - period. Relying solely on motivation puts your success on something that is variable. This applies to other areas of our life like putting money away or paying off debt. You only get success when you commit and follow through - whether you feel like it or not. Similar to going to work or church those days you really don't feel like it, it has to become a priority. Like work, the discipline pays off. "

Note: The whether you feel like it or not part. I sometimes go into the gym with a sour face on and my trainer Charles will ask me what's wrong and I'll tell him "I'd rather be watching Good Times!!!" (Waiting to Exhale reference) or sometimes I'll say "Do you know Oprah is on?!" He just got a flat screen tv for the treadmill area and I kinda feel like he got it for me *blush* lol

Another Blog I like called Squart Rx added this : "Motivation is over-rated. Stop waiting to get motivated. Motivation and enthusiasm will always come and go. Even the best athletes in the world don't always "feel like" training, but they do it anyway. Instead of waiting, start training for something and train frequently. Do NOT destroy yourself every training session, but do something almost everyday. Make training a habit. By making it a habit, you are virtually eliminating emotion from the decision-making process and, if the habit is ingrained deeply enough, there is no decision to make about training or not - you will train period.Creating the right habits, mentally and physically, will help sustain you through the valleys and long plateaus."

Note: I love this guy. I mean really if this doesn't say "Suck it up & take it like a woman!" I don't know what does! Again he notes motivation will come and go you can't rely on that if you are serious. I remember reading and article about the top CEOs in the world and one thing they all or about 90% had in common it was that they exercise regularly. One CEO said he doesn't think about it he just wakes up brushes his teeth and goes to the gym. I remember thinking WOW Who does that?! I usually had to wake up pray, think about it, toss and turn, exhale a few times and slowly get it cracking...sometimes I would some times I wouldn't. Now I set my appointments and since my blackberry runs my life when the Pearl says its time for training I get moving. Habit.

Working out Mondays & Saturdays has become a habit at this points; it is what I do. I don't really think about it at this point I just do it. I do try to read health & exercise related magazines, books, and watch positive healthy shows like Dr. Oz to help reinforce the habits I have picked up. I try to surround myself with like minded people which is why a gym setting works best for me. I like going to Weight Watchers meetings because as a foodie its good to meet up with other foodies and share foodie stories about avoiding candy at work and sharing recipes that are good tasting and good for you! I also get support and encouragment. Do you know I love my stupid lil weight watcher keychain and washer, magnets and stickers?! Its the small things. Anyway that's my take on motivation... Thanks for all the love & support along this leg of this life long journey!

WW swag :-)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Food finds

I got a few emails about the food I've been eating along this journey so I said let me do a post with a few of my staples.

Worldwide Protein Shakes Low calories taste ok good pre or post workout

Trader Joe's Orange Chicken - Similar to General Tso chicken!
I use a lot of WW products the dessert are really good

Trader Joe pasta sauce its 99cents & 50 calories in 1/2 a cup!

Salmon! I have it 1 to 2 times per week. I heard years ago J-Lo eats salmon like 5-6 times a week. How I dunno but it is very good, high in healthy fat, and quick & easy to make!

Lean Cuisine is also another good meal on the go idea. Also when a craving for something fattening hits its a good substitute

I tend to use the dishes that have mostly protein and veggies

I buy the sea salt brand its a great snack! Just watch the portions 6 chips = a servings

Hummus I've never really been a fan but I tried this to go snack and really liked the roasted red pepper!

Fuze drinks are excellent! I love water but that can get boring.

With my workouts protein shakes are essential I try to stick with the lite version. i am not a big breakfast person so I will drink this in the morning

Greek yogurt is all the rage. This is the only brand that I like. I usually add a pack of splenda

I loveeeee these meatballs! They are pre-cooked I just pop them in the microwave or crock pot with sauce

Love popcorn! I hate the lite version so I opt for the 100 calorie butter brand.
As I think of other things I will add another post!


Setting S.M.A.R.T. Goals

Goal setting has been the most important aspect of my journey...More than all the exercise I do or the number of Weight Watcher meetings I attend. The first step on this journey was to create

S.M.A.R.T. Goals.




R- realistic

T-time specific GOALS!

I began in the new year (cliche I know) setting some hard goals in terms of how much weight I wanted to lose. I said 100 pounds in a year by eating better and exercising more. I based that on 2 pounds a week which is considered a reasonable and safe pace. So that was my SMART goal. It was specific- 100 pounds loss, manageable-b/c it would be based on a healthy approach to weight loss, attainable-b/c it was a slow and steady pace, realistic- for the same reason its attainable, time specific- giving myself 1 year.

That was my big goal. I also set mini goals like the first 25 pounds. It was around that time I said it was time to go back to Weight Watchers b/c I enjoy the meetings for information and accounablility. I also added a personal trainer into my budget and the combo has really given me the edge I needed to kick it up.

I also set SMART goals anout working out and that helped as well.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009


Ok well by the time this event has come and gone I'll be on the other side of 35 (years old) but I guess you can still call me a GIRL if the word IRON is in front of it lol

Well I just registered for the 2010 Aflac Iron Girl Columbia Women's Triathlon!!! A few years ago my friend Devron and I started riding bikes at his local park and we literally rode into the Iron Girl event! We didn't know what it was! All we gathered was that a lot of women were in the park looking beat downnnnn! I went home and googled it and realized Columbia Maryland has one of the most popular triathlon events in the country! Who knew? Me being me I said "Cool one day I am going to do that!"

The same thing happened to me and the Baltimore Marathon in 2005. I literally drove into a road block the day of the race and ran into a police officer I knew and asked her what was going on and she explained it was the Baltimore Running Festival and I said oh ok went home & looked it up and said I'm gonna do that! I did the Baltimore Half Marathon in 2006 and it was a good experience! My only regret was that I did not actually train for it. I was hitting the gym hard for months so my stamina was there but that wasn't a good idea! I am such a procrastinator! lol I cram for everything! In the end I did it, got the t-shirt, crab medal, and went home to a good pasta dinner and some mighty sore thighs!
The cool thing about athletes are they support each other! I remember being on mile 8 or 9 and I asked myself "Why ON EARTH did you do this? Who walks/jogs/runs 13.1 miles or more? For what heavenly purpose Lord!!!" All of this was inside my head of course and marathoners were passing me by patting me on the back and giving me high 5s and thumbs up! What a feeling! When it was over a few of us hopped on the lightrail/train and it was cool we were high 5-ing each other and smelling terrible based on how the other passengers were looking at us and moving away but we just happy to be done! When I got off the train I walked into a another group of runners they looked like they walked out of a Calvin Klein ad and they were saying good job and patting me on the back I was thinking by far this is the best "cool kid" moment in my adult life! lol
But this time in an effort to turn over a new leaf I shall TRAIN for the Iron Girl!!!!
Last year my friend Nicole did her first Tri and she did it with Team in Training. You raise money for Leukemia & Lymphoma and they provide free training for any half marathon, full marathon, Triathlon, Century bike events, etc. Not a bad deal! I raised over $2,500.00 in 2006 when I did the 2 Day Avon Breast Cancer walk so I am not worried! I have a very supportive network of family, sorors, friends, and colleagues who will support me and this great cause!
I am looking forward to this! More info on events and how to donate will follow in the Spring!

Event details in case you wanna come see the event!:

August 22, 2010
Centennial Park - Columbia, Maryland, USA
0.62mi Swim - 17.5mi Bike - 3.4mi Run

2010 Iron Girl!

Saturday, October 31, 2009


I would be remiss in my blogging duty to not discuss food in this process. Some experts say food is 80% of the battle in weight loss. As the experts say weight loss = cutting calories + exercise. The basic math that is always talked about 3,500 calories = 1 pound. Counting calories is daunting so I do Weight Watchers although I have done calorie counting too. Weight Watchers gives you a short cut to the calorie counting; which is helpful. Also the meetings help to keep me focused. Every week there are good topics, you share your weight loss challenges, and triumphs and you get support. Some people don't like to journal or talk in groups but seriously it helps. The journal is a big thing b/c last week I lost 1.4 pounds in 2 weeks and I was upset BUT when I went back over my food journal it revealed lots of eating out, high calorie treats, and empty calories. This week I cut back and lost 3.2 pounds! It makes a difference!
Counting calories is kinda like balancing a checkbook. You have a starting balance (Your BMR) you have withdrawals (the calories you consume) and the deposits you make (Your exercise).
Choices are important when I go out and here are a few tips:
1) I cook my food for the week. I make things like Turkey Chili.
2) Because I am soooo busy I try to find short cuts like pre cut veggies, pre-cooked meat, frozen dinners!
3) I check the online menus before I go to restaurants so I am not hit with sooo many choice. It gives me control. Even if I decide to have a bacon cheese burger at elast I already know the points and can act accordingly.
4) I may eat 1/2 my meal and have an adult beverage or dessert. I am not about depriving myself but I understand there's a cost to pay if I do not do my part.
5) I stick to bakes and broiled things. My faves are baked potatoes, baked sweet potatoes, salmon, chicken salad, soups, and crab cakes.
6) I do not drink soda more than a few times a year maybe. I stick to low calories fluids like water, Fuze, & reduced calories juice. I sometime do half water half juice to reduce the calories I consume. Water is a must I drink about 50 to 60 oz.
7) I take a multi vitamin ( I try to take it daily)
8) I take my lunch to work almost everyday. Helps to save money and control calories.
9) I sneak veggies in. So when I make chili I will add a bag of frozen mixed vegetables to it and an extra can of diced tomatoes.
10) I eat what I like! Meaning I do not grab a hold of every new trend I try things and if I do not like them I will not force myself to eat them. Case in point- hummus. I know people love it I don't'! Fage greek yogurt- Yuck! Alternatives I do like spinach and artichoke dip so I'll have that or Chonbani greek yogurt is great.
***Bonus- I journal my food and exercise. I used and both are great FREE online communities to get you started. I use the WW on line journal and paper one most often.
I hope this helps. Like I said I would be remiss in my weight loss blogging duties if I did not include some discussion of food. Exercise wise I am really feeling like I am over that hump and food-wise I am getting there as well!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Week 1-EDD Just Do It!

Well Week 1 of the Every D@mn Day Just Do It challenge went well. I missed 2 days although Saturday was the lonnnnggg conference and Sunday I spent the whole day cleaning and throwing out plenty of trash that had to get out of my house so technically I was active on Sunday.

I had my trainer today it was a good workout as usual and my trainer mentioned a few gym members are doing the YMCA Turkey Trot! I thought about it last year but didn't do it but this year I will. I have done one 5k in 2007 so this will be a good thing to do again! I hope a few of you local folks will join me!

Friday, October 23, 2009


Well I see challenges ahead so since by nature, I am problem solver I went right to work.

By the way this is the challenge (& not a problem) :-)

I am too busy for my own good! But I am busy doing things I truly enjoy for example I enjoy being an ACTIVE member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and I enjoy being an ACTIVE member of The Junior League of Baltimore. I am getting active with my Alma mater the University of Baltimore School of Law as well as the University of Maryland Alumni Association. Then there's the Monumental City Bar Association and yup I am getting involved with them as well working on reestablishing a mentoring program with the law school and I am getting back into church and there are my friends and family members I have relationships with and well you get the idea.

The whole idea behind this blog is to help navigate the busy lifestyles we tend to have in order to make fitness a priority.

This Saturday my workout routine will be interrupted yet again because I am a busy woman. I have missed a few Saturdays over the last 2 months and the trend has been that I would not make up that session. For the most part the 2 days I do personal training are 2 consistent workout days for me. They are great because I KNOW that I KNOW if all else fails I will get 2 good workouts in on those days.

But on a weekend like this or like so many others, I need a way to avoid missing my steady workouts! This week I said I have to stop that so I asked my trainer to meet tonight (Friday) instead of tomorrow since I have an all day AKA Conference on Saturday. When I say all day I mean 7:30am to 4:30pm and its at a hotel over 30 miles away. I am on a Regional Committee so I need to be there early to prepare for our presentation as well. Now Fridays are typically date night but I am on a self imposed hiatus; that's for another blog at another time lol so tonight's my session instead of tomorrow. Fridays tend to be days I either hit the town or crash so I am tired on Friday evenings but I am not "claiming" that this time. I will be well rested and ready for a good workout tonight!
Ok challenge #2 is my allllllllllllllllll day conference! How will I get a 30 minute minimum workout in tomorrow? Remember that will be Day 6 of 30 days of the Every Damn Day- Just Do It Challenge! I was emailing one of my Sorors who is also working out and losing weight, she offered to do a 15 minute walk during lunch with me. So that's 15 minutes taken care of. Then I realized we are going to a hotel and I checked on line and they have a gym! She nixed that idea and let me know she is not getting sweaty lol so we will see what I do but I will bring my Brooks and do something for 30 minutes during the conference tomorrow. I could always wake up early and do the treadmill before I go as well.

The lesson is I (you) have options! Every day I (you) can get it in! I already know Saturday will be a long day and we are going out to dinner afterwards so the likelihood of working out when I get home is remote. To avoid missing day 6 I am planning in advance or as I once heard someone say "I am planning on purpose" to get my 30 minutes of activity in over the next 30 days! Here is an article on the benefits of exercising 30 minutes a day! Join me!
Exercise 30 Minutes a Day? Who Knew!
Most Americans aren't aware of national recommendations, study finds
Posted September 29, 2009

TUESDAY, Sept. 29 (HealthDay News) -- Despite 14 years of public education campaigns, only one-third of Americans know about national recommendations for a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise a day, and fewer than half meet that goal, a new study has found.
The lack of awareness is greatest among men, the unemployed and people born in the United States, the researchers said. Their finding came from an analysis of data from 2,381 people who took part in the 2005 Health Information National Trends Survey.
One reason why efforts to spread the message about physical activity are having limited success is the "highly generalized, saturating effect of media in the current environment," the authors wrote. "Through varied sources, many are bombarded with multiple physical activity and general health promotion 'recommendations' that may be challenging to differentiate."
A report on the study is in the October issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise.
Since 1995, the U.S. government and national organizations have used radio, TV, print publications and the Internet to make Americans aware they should be doing at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity each day.
If more people followed the recommendations, it could help reduce rates of chronic health problems, said the study's lead author, Gary Bennett, an associate professor of psychology and neuroscience at Duke University.
"Physical activity is important for protecting against a large number of chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease, some cancer, diabetes, even some cognitive disorders," Bennett said in a Duke news release. "So the physical activity recommendations are extremely important to help increase awareness among the American population about the amount of physical activity that is necessary to reduce the risk of developing these diseases," he added.
"We've seen a lot of discussion about prevention in health-care reform debates over the last few months, and it's becoming clear that increasing physical activity among Americans may, in the long run, reduce some of the major costs that burden our health-care system," Bennett said.
More information
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more about physical activity.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Day 4

Well today was a longggg day! I made it to work at 6:30am. I slept well last night and woke up ready to go so I left 1 hour early. Anyway I was tired but played some loud music and went straight to the gym after work. I did Socarobics and called it a day! Day 4 done!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Day 3 of 30

I had a longggg day! I got home after 7pm and a smay of you may know I leave my house around 5:30am to get to work and I have 1 1/2 hour commute buttttt I made it up my mind that I would do the 30 minutes of exercise every day for 30 days. I came home and got right on the treadmill!
F.Y.I. I was still in my work clothing (lol) oh that poor Ralph Lauren dress shirt! But day 3 is done!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

E.D.D. Just Do It-Day 1 of 30

Well the 30 days of 30 minutes of "Every Damn Day-Just Do It-Nike" fitness challenge began yesterday. So this is what went down...

60 minutes- Personal Trainer

60 minutes - Chizel It Be Fit Baltimore Mega Fitness cardio workout. The City of Baltimore has a great program called Be Fit. It is done in collaboration with several partners including my personal trainer Charles Harris. It was an hour long cardio class held at the Cahill Recreation center @ 7pm. In a show of support, I went with some of the other Chizel It heads. It was a good workout and I will post pics later on. The most amazing thing was a 70 plus year old woman who had the body of a...I dunno a bikini model in her 20s! I am talking cut up! Six-Pack and just fly! How inspiring! It was a large crowd of almost 50 people of all ages, sizes, and fitness levels. Good stuff Mayor Dixon!

Today...oh today. Its only 10:30 am and I am already tired! I am not even half way thru my workday! But its Day 2 and I packed my workout clothes and I will hit the gym after work. There is a 5:45 Maximum Circuit Cardio class and I should get there just in time for that otherwise I may do the treadmill and wait for Charles' class at 6:30pm EITHER WAY I AM GOING TODAY! I have already made up in my mind that I will not fail so I am free from the fear that can come with putting yourslf to the test. What about you?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Every D@mn Day-Just Do It!

Ok my new prize possession (see above) *Paris Hilton voice*
Don't you love it?
Nike has a way with words! Just Do It is a great marketing slogan but
this takes it to the next level!
I hope people don't get offended but even if they do guess what? I like it! And that's what matters since
I paid for it! :-)

Well I hit the big 50. 50 pounds gone....Now onto the next goal of 75 pounds. I went out shopping this weekend and had a great time! In January I did some shopping and it was a very different story. I was not at all happy about it. There's nothing like having to go to the back of a rack to find your clothing size...its like you cross your fingers that there's something there for ya.
I am midway in the rack now lol which feels good. I picked up a few items but one in particular was an AWESOME purchase that would be a size 16....dress for the upcoming Monumental City Bar Gala!
In case you missed it I said a size 16! Its going to go perfectly with my Christian Louboutians! The big reveal will be in early December :-)
In January I was in a 24... Its been a long journey I mean 50 pounds in 9 months in the scheme of thing seems slowwwww to me but I am not getting caught up in that.
I am not a true size 16 but with this designer and style I am and I'll take it! I bought some 18 pants and jeans and even got some size 14 tops. The cool thing is everything fits! None of that "goal" clothing hanging up like a carrot on a stick these are things I am gonna wear this week!

I did a lot of shopping this weekend! Thanks Dad! Life is good!
Some people at work have noticed & that's cool too.
Well the point of the post. I need to push myself to get in a little more exercise. Nothing drastic but EVERY DAMN DAY I want to get in at least 30 minutes of exercise. My job is cool one of the perks is free classes like yoga and pilates and they have even offered the room for us to bring in DVDs to workout on our own. So this should be easy!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Before & During Pictures

Dec 08 & Jan 09 ~ Oct 09 (-52 pounds)

Well I almost didn't post these but it is a good thing.
So these are my Before & During pictures... Its been 8 1/2 months & I've lost 52 pounds that's about 6 pounds a month I am happy with that although my goal was 10 a month but slow & steady wins the race!
After pictures to follow!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Let the Church say AMEN!

I am really excited this Saturday my church Mt. Calvery AME church is sponsoring a 6 mile hike on the NCR Trail. For over a year I have been planning to go on a hike but just have not done it. So when I heard on Sunday the Health & Wellness committee was promoting this activity I was so happy! I have often felt the church should be at the forefront on the obesity epidemic especially in the black church since our community is plagued with high blood pressure, diabetes and cancer all of which are related to being overweight. I am extremely proud of my church and looking forward to the hike on Saturday! The last hike I went on was in January when I went to Sedona, Az with my Mom & Sis and while I finished that hike around Bell Rock I was reallllllly worn out. I am looking forward seeing where I am now fitness wise. I see such a difference in my workouts with my trainer in the few months we've been working out so I am looking forward to it! I will post some pics for sure! If only to show my "before & during pictures!"