Recently, I was at a conference where a speaker talked about the hills and valleys of life. She went on to say that life is a series of hills and valleys, but, the real goal is never to camp out in the valleys. She also talked about how we cannot rely on someone or something else to pull us out of these valleys. It is ultimately up to each of us to decide to make changes in our lives. This really struck a nerve with me. It really made me think about the fact that I was responsible for getting myself out of the valleys and to climb the next hill and enjoy the view. Being around speakers like this who themselves have made hard and drastic changes I feel ready to get back on my health roller coaster and ride it to the end. While there have been some days I feel too scared to even get in line I am happy to report that today is not one of them. I feel like I am hearing the click, click, click of the wheels as I climb to the top for a fantastic view and amazing changes in my life.
Along with changing my view I am looking forward to the change of seasons. The cool fall air will be great for taking our dog Bailey for some crisp walks in the leaves. I am also looking forward to the Cornerstone Health Summit on October 15th. I am really excited to hear Dr. Brouse speak about the Health Issues Specific to the Midwest. I look forward to seeing you there as we learn together ways to improve our health. I feel ready, willing, and able to climb out of this valley and I will enjoy the most amazing view from the top because if it will BE…it is up to ME!
Happy 4th of July!
It is hard to believe summer is in full force and it feels as if it is running by at lightning speed. This is a wonderful time of the year with family picnics and gathering with friends at the beach. One challenge about these events is there are often pop or sugary beverages included. I am really trying to make a conscious effort to eliminating white sugar out of the household and our diet. With that said I don’t want to just replace it with diet pop with artificial sweeteners. There are still a lot of questions about their safety and after hearing in one of the Cornerstone classes that our bodies don’t even know what to do with artificial sweeteners I don’t want to even go there. So on occasion I have found that when we have a craving for a soda pop we have found one called Zevia. What I like about this one is it is sweetened with stevia (a natural sweet leaf) and no artificial sweeteners.
With knowledge comes the power to change and each of these little changes like eliminating white sugar in our diet is helping me and my family live healthier. On my quest for knowledge and to be my best I am continually trying new ways to incorporate health habits and to increase my knowledge on health topics. That is one of the reasons I am so excited to be purchasing my ticket for the Cornerstone Health Summit on October 15th. The topics and the speaker Dr. Brouse are truly ones that I can relate to. So many people I know are suffering from digestive issues and hormonal imbalances I am confident I will walk away from the event with even more knowledge on these topics and information on how to make necessary changes to help keep me and my family healthy.
It is a continual journey to optimal health. I can definitely relate to this in my weight loss journey. With my weight fluctuate up and down the past couple weeks I know that making healthier choices for me and my family will ultimately pay off. Even if that means doing something difficult likes decreasing the white sugar and finding different recipes and alternatives to try.
Well, summer is finally here. The rain has stopped for a short time and the heat is coming in quickly but I was able to get my plants in the garden. Now it is just a waiting game for the delicious produce to grow. With all the rain we have had lately we haven’t been able to cook on the grill as much as we would like. I did however try a new recipe in the crock-pot that was D…delicious. It was Cilantro Lime Chicken. If you do not care much for cilantro you may want to pass this one up. I for one love the taste of it and thought it went well with the chicken and lime. I included the recipe below.
With the warmer weather coming I have noticed I am not getting enough water in each day. As the temperature rises it is even more important to drink plenty of water to keep us hydrated and feeling our best. Thirst can sometimes masquerade as hunger and when on a journey which includes weight-loss I need to remember to drink all of my water. I am happy to report I did lose a pound this past week but do feel the lack of water affected my overall weight loss.
The plan for this week is to make sure I get the correct amount of water in and then some. I am curious as to how this will factor in with the weight loss next week. I will keep you posted. :)
I hope you will try the recipe and let me know what you think of it.
Cilantro Lime Chicken
I put all of the ingredients in my crock pot and turned it on low to cook for the afternoon.
WOW, have things been hectic in my life lately. Work has been VERY, VERY stressful with unfortunately no end in sight. I have made sure my daily regimen includes an extra dose of B vitamins (the happy vitamins) :) but even they are having a hard time keeping up with the stress. What all this stress means for someone who uses food as a comfort is…BAD NEWS!!! I have tried very hard to not let all of the stress build up and to remain focused on my journey; unfortunately there have been some downfalls.
This past week however was not one of them. My son had his first job interview and was offered a job for the summer working at Arby’s. He was pretty proud of himself and thought we should celebrate his new job offer. Of course his favorite place for a celebration treat is the Dairy Queen.
I told him sure we could go and have a celebratory treat at the Dairy Queen, who doesn’t want to celebrate with ice cream. While on the drive there I was thinking of all the delicious options for treats in my head. As we stopped in the parking lot I made my decision.
The decision was however not an Oreo® blizzard but rather to have NO ice cream at all!
I just bought one ice cream treat for my son. It may seem like a small step but I was pretty happy with myself on making that decision.
I did have ONE taste of his ice cream, but that was it, just one bite!
So as I continue on this journey it may seem that the backwards steps are constantly happening. I know in my heart I am still moving forward, slow as it may be. I firmly believe that one day it will be 2 steps forward for each step backwards. Starting with just saying no to a tasty Dairy Queen treat!!!
With all the driving and family meetings it was very hard to get steps in daily. Plus, I had the unfortunate accident of pulling my back out just before I left for home. This made for a long ride and also caused me to be laid up for the next day. I have since recovered but the lack of moving and being out of my normal routine did not play well into my weight-loss journey.
I am back on the road to recovery and have increased my walking and commitment to eat healthy. One dish I did make this past week was a wonderful salad with tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, avocado, and cilantro. It was very tasty and I am looking forward to making it again very soon. It will be even better when the vegetables are straight from my garden.
If you are not a fan of cilantro you could skip it but I love it and added a little extra to mine. So enjoy and let me know if you give it try.
Cucumber, Tomato, Avocado Salad
1 lb. Roma tomatoes chopped
1 English cucumber diced (I used a regular one)
½ medium red onions sliced
2 avocado diced
2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 medium lemon (approx. 2 TBSP)
¼ cup (1/2 bunch) cilantro chopped
Mix all together and before serving put 1 tsp sea salt and 1/8 tsp pepper.
At one time or another we have all been on a road trip. At first the excitement of the trip keeps me energized however after several hours in the car this excitement begins to wears off. Here is where the challenge begins for me this week. What will I do during the road trip I am taking to visit my family? What will I choose to munch on?
During previous trips when this boredom sets in I reach for the handy dandy reliable Tootsie Pops. Who can resist the challenge of seeing how many licks it takes to get to the Tootsie Roll center??? Of course one or two of these treats are probably alright except for all of the sugar. The problem is after 14 hours in a car you look and realize you have polished off most of the bag. AAAARG…
So knowing this about myself and the length of the trip ahead of me I am making alternate plans to keep the eating out of boredom away. I will be bringing along some protein snack bars (chocolate coconut my favorite) along with plenty of water and energizing green teas. By making these small changes from one snack to another I hope to be able to sit in the car for hours and not eat a whole bag of Tootsie Pops. Here is to a new kind of road trip.
That is the thought that comes to mind for me lately. I sometimes place such lofty goals for myself and then get very frustrated when I am not seeing progress. I keep telling myself it is ok to cheer for the small successes that come my way.
For instance just today we had a party at work. Of course there is always wonderful food at these gatherings. A co-worker had made some homemade cupcakes which are usually not a problem for me to pass up. Here is the challenge though- she made these cupcakes with raspberry filling and lemon frosting. Fresh tangy lemon anything is always a favorite for me. Well I stayed strong for most of the meal but then at the end I decided to take just one cupcake and enjoy it later.
I stayed strong for most of the afternoon, but, then temptation was too great and I gave in. I took that bite. Now it was a very good cupcake but truthfully it was not nearly as good as I pictured it in my mind. After this first bite I decided I really did not need to eat the whole thing and gave the rest away. I was pretty proud of myself for having the willpower to sample a small amount and get rid of the rest.
While this one cupcake I didn’t eat may seem small in the big picture it was a giant step in gaining control of my willpower. With each of these small steps I will continue to grow and move forward. These steps will take me on the most amazing quest of my life. My Quest to be My Best!
Chocolate and chocolate and chocolate OH MY!
Easter has come and gone but for someone who is a big...okay… huge chocolate fan it is really hard to stay away from the malted milk eggs, chocolate M & M’s and the Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs. Those malted milk eggs are so easy to just keep popping into my mouth. And what can I say about Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs they are hands down my favorite. With all these treats and goodies it is really hard to stick to the healthy eating plan. As much as I know I need to stay on track to reach my best some times are just harder than others.
Over the holiday I did not stick to the healthy eating plan, or getting my necessary protein in each day and it did make a difference.
I find that I am also a very routine person so when we have a holiday and my routine is changed I can get off track very easy. It is so easy to fall off the bandwagon of 10,000 steps in each day.
To help me stay on the bandwagon I think I found a Secret Weapon!
Okay it is not so secret but a very helpful weapon and it is the new addition to our family, Bailey!
Bailey is a very energetic Labrador who became part of our family rather by accident. Not too long ago my dog of many years passed away and I was not going to get another dog anytime soon. It is hard to let a friend go. Then along came this very sweet adorable and well trained dog that was seen wandering around for several days. We thought for sure someone would come to claim this well trained dog, but no one did. We couldn’t just leave him so we officially adopted him. Not only is Bailey a wonderful dog he is the most willing walking partner anyone could ask for. He is always willing to take a walk with anyone and at any time of day.
It is wonderful to have him on my daily walks in an effort to reach 10,000 steps. I am dreaming of the day when the sun is out and we can just walk and walk and walk.
Somehow I think I will get tired before he will. But I am up for the challenge.
My goals for the next week are to get back into my routine of 10,000 steps each day and stay on my healthy eating plan. I will keep you posted on how Bailey and I are doing with this goal.
Daylight savings time is upon us and I am very excited to spring my clock forward. I am excited for the warmer weather but most of all the daylight when I get up in the mornings. The sound of birds chirping and sun coming through the windows can really energize me. With the thoughts of spring and new beginnings it is the perfect time to remember that I too am on my quest for a new and improved me.
With a new spring in my step I am off to tackle my goals on My Quest to Be My Best!!!
Each and every day is a new start. Morning is the perfect time to think about the day ahead and set some goals. Results will come from taking on one thing at a time and making changes. Remember the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.
For me one of the changes is to get some of my 10,000 steps in before I leave for work in the morning. With the sun up before me it is much easier to get up and get going. This starts me off on the right foot. No pun intended there. This also helps ensure that I complete my 10,000 steps each day.
Another sign that spring is on its way...I ordered seeds for my garden! A week ago the several of us from the Cornerstone Health Team ordered seeds for our garden and they just arrived! We are very excited to start our seeds for this year's garden. There is nothing better than fresh garden veggies especially when you know they came from your own garden. This year we ordered our seeds from a www.mypatriotsupply.com They have a variety of non-GMO heirloom seeds to choose from and they are very well priced. Check them out if you still need to order seeds for your garden.
Another week on the journey to be “My Best” and the truth is I did not think it would be so hard to stay focused and motivated.
For me this journey is not just about weight-loss but also about rediscovering the person I know I can be.
It seems one week is really good and I hit all my goals and the next not so hot. Of course this is the case for any journey.
I find the real goal and the hardest part is to stick with the plan even when things are not going like we want them to. Remembering why I am parking so far away from the building at work so I can get my 10,000 steps and not just the closest spot for a quick sprint to the door. Why I am getting up early to make my lunch and not just finding something in the breakroom. Now I am not saying I am giving up just wishing for some instant gratification I guess.
But reaching a goal is never easy but always worth the effort.
While I am continuing to lose the weight another big step for me this week was helping the Cornerstone Health Team teach the Kid’s Health Adventure Class. Teaching a group of people is a whole new experience for me and it was AMAZING.
Not only did the kids have a good time but I was able to stand up in-front of a group of people and present my ideas with confidence and clarity.
Doing this along with sharing my story at the Basics of Reading Your Body classes has allowed me to continue to build confidence.
The ability to stand up in public without feeling like I am about to pass out is a huge accomplishment for me.
Along with this new found confidence I continue to have people mention that I am looking good and that I must have lost weight …this means so much when on a journey like mine.
On a weight-loss note I am still finding it difficult to get enough protein in each day. Adding these protein packed snacks to my day has helped. They are even kid approved. So Enjoy!
Energizing Protein Balls
Power Recipe for a Healthy Snack
A Kid-Friendly No-Cook Recipe
1 cup Life Energizing Soy Protein (vanilla or cocoa)
1 cup Peanut Butter (can substitute w/almond, macadamia, etc.)
1 cup Oatmeal
2/3 to 1 cup Honey (depending on how runny)
½ cup chocolate chips, cranberries, raisins, etc. (optional)
Mix the protein and Nut Butter until smooth.
Add the Oatmeal, then the Honey.
Add chocolate chips or other additions if wanted.
Mix until it’s like cookie dough, not too sticky or dry.
Roll into 1 inch balls
Two of these plus an apple makes an excellent portable snack or light lunch.
Keep in plastic container for long drives.
Send to school with the kids - teachers love them too!
They make great homework and TV snacks.
The soy protein gives them added energy and helps build your cells.
The Oatmeal supplies both soluble and insoluble fiber.
The Nut Butter supplies essential fatty acids.
The Fruits/Seeds supply fiber, vitamins, minerals, & essential fatty acids.
(One batch makes 2 1/2 dozen one inch balls)
I am forty-seven years old and overweight. Food is where I find comfort - happy or sad…it does not matter. What I really want is to learn how to use my own strength and confidence to handle situations, not food! I have decided to make a commitment, a commitment to being healthy! Join me in this journey to good health, as I blog about my successes and struggles along the way. Each week I will share with you my ups and downs, recipes, healthy lifestyle tips, workout ideas and more. Join me on my “Quest to be the Best.”