Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize? Run so as to win. Every athlete exercises discipline in every way. They do it to win a perishable crown, but we an imperishable one. Thus I do not run aimlessly; I do not fight as if I were shadowboxing. No, I drive my body and train it, for fear that, after having preached to others, I myself should be disqualified. - 1 Cor 9:24-27

Friday, January 29, 2010

Rewarding myself with something other than food

At the beginning of my weight loss journey, I needed to come up with little rewards for myself (not food).

This list was difficult to think of.  If you have any suggestions, please comment!
  • Four weeks of consistent exercise  =>  heart rate monitor
  • Be able to advance to level 2 of 30 day Shred  =>  new songs from I-tunes
  • Lose 10 pounds before Christmas  =>  books about running
  • Increase my run/walk intervals  =>  bubble bath
  • Go down a size from my "normal" jeans  =>  learn how to knit
  • Attain my first goal weight of 165 lbs  =>  Runner's World magazine

I now wear a size 12 (compared to a size 18 eleven weeks ago) and I just finished my first knitting project.

Knitting has always left this experienced crocheter frustrated.  I was determined to learn how to knit.  My ultimate knitting goal is to make myself some wool socks.

Where to start?  I usually start in books.  That's how I have learned to wire a garage, build a fence, and sew.  Well, books did not help me learn to knit!  I was able to understand what the pattern symbols meant, but the actual casting on and knitting wasn't turning out.  Where next?  Videos.  Ahh, the beauty of the internet and a Knitting Help website.

After watching a video of how to cast on and knit, I was able to make the dishcloth pictured here.  My first completed knitting project.  Tension needs some work, but I am knitting!  Gauge is not correct, but I am knitting!  I currently can only do two knitting stitches, but I am knitting!  Next knitting goal is to learn the purl stitch on another dish cloth.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Children Are a Blessing

Lately, I've been waking earlier than the household to get my workout done before husband goes to work.  My almost eight year old, Mr. T, lays in our bed with the baby, Lots of Hair.  Sometimes though, Lots of Hair wakes up and her sister, Trouble, joins her.   So Mr. T brings whoever is awake downstairs and occupies them until I am finished with exercising and a shower.  I have been so grateful to have older children helping out with the younger ones so that I can improve my well-being.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

My Weight Loss Journey

Eleven weeks ago, I started on a weight loss / get healthy journey.  I was sick and tired of being sick and tired.  I had little control over some areas of my life which continually made me unhappy.  I was depressed.  I needed to do something for me.  Food had become a comfort for me these last four years.  It has been a roller-coaster of a ride.

November 7, 2009, I started my journey at a 195 pounds and 38.8% body fat.  I joined Jillian Michael's online program.  Everyday, I was given a workout routine and meal plan.  I didn't follow the meal plan precisely, especially cooking for a family of seven.  I did count my calories.  I counted my carbs, protein, and fat.  Having the right balance of those helped me feel full for four hours at a time.  And yes, I did have some chocolate at times; worked into my calorie allowance.  Counting calories has been an educational experience.  I weighed all my food.  It's amazing what is considered a portion size.

 After four weeks of consistent exercise, I purchased a heart rate monitor.  (rewarding myself with something other than food)  I am a numbers person.  I like to see exactly how many calories I eat and how many calories I burn.  Simple math:  create a calorie deficit leads to losing weight.  It hasn't been easy, but it has been worth it.

As of today, I have lost 25 pounds!  My % body fat is at 32.0% down 6.8%.  I have lost over 5 inches in my waist and 4 inches in my hips.  I am down two sizes in my jeans.  I can see my ribs.  I exercise everyday except for the Lord's Day. 

I pray that I continue on this new lifestyle and never return to my previous lifestyle.  Yes, lifestyle.  I'm not on a diet.  I have a new lifestyle.

Follow my progress with the little tickers at the bottom of the blog.  I am getting close to my first weight loss goal; a realistic goal.  After I reach it, I will re-evaluate and make a new goal of more weight loss or changing my body composition (% body fat).

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Running is my newest challenge

I am not a runner.  Since I started my weight loss / exercise journey ten weeks ago, I am trying to run.  I first started with run/walk intervals, i.e. Run 1 minutes, Walk 2 minutes, repeat 10X.   Currently, I am running 6 minutes at a time with 1 minute of walking.  My goal is to run three 5K races this year.  
For my birthday, I invested in some awesome running gear from Athleta; moisture wicking and available in Tall sizes!

With five children and homeschooling, it has been a challenge fitting in my exercise each day.  Being made in the image of God is worth the extra effort.

Friday, January 15, 2010

If Sarah Palin runs for president, I will vote for her.

Interesting article in the magazine of In Touch Weekly

What a blessing to have a woman stand up for life!  I firmly believe that if all of us, especially our elected officials would value life, born and unborn, our country would be much better.  As a country that values life, we would care for the elderly, the sick, the mentally challenged,  the orphans, the widows, ... I could go on.  I am not talking about more government programs.  I remember after 9-11 how everyone helped each other out.  Charities and everyday citizens helped more people then some of the government programs; and they did it faster too.  We are all called to help our brother in need.

"How  can you say there are too many children in the world?
That is like saying there are too many flowers."~~Mother Teresa of Calcutta

If the Bible calls debt a curse, and children a blessing; why is it that in
our culture we apply for curses and reject God's blessings?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Small Successes #1


Small Successes for this week:
1. I created a blog
2. I increased my training intervals to Run 6 min / Walk 1 min repeat 4 times and then run 2 more minutes
3. I made a list of goals for 2010

No School Today - Kids are sick

One of my goals this year was to create a blog.  Well, since kids are sick today, there's no school.  So, I have some extra time to do something for me.

My 2010 Goals:
  • Create a blog 
  • Wake up earlier
  • Develop a deeper prayer life
  • Run 3 5K races this year
  • Incorporate more vegetarian dishes
  • Make a list of all crochet, knitting, cross-stitch, and sewing projects for the year; then prioritize
  • Read one religious and/or educational book each month
  • Confession once a month