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!