Vicky's Progress

Kelly's Progress

Kathleen's Progress

Friday, March 28, 2008

Drum Roll......

Okay..this is my first message on our blog. I have SO been dreading writing this. YIKES. I guess I should start about who I am and what I need to lose/gain? I'm 23 and work with Jenny and Vicky at a mom/baby boutique. I have been EXTREMELY overweight my whole life. I remember very vividly, weighing in at 204lbs, when I was in the 6th grade. I weighed more than my teacher! I've always struggled with my weight and have never found something I could stick with. I have tried Weight Watchers many times, but had to leave when I hit a plateau and the money wasn't coming in. One of the things that bothers me most about my weight is that I know for a fact it holds me back in what I do. A lot of times I won't go somewhere, or do something because I'm fat. Yuck..fat is such a nasty word. I'll use the words my moms uses to describe me, "Pleasantly Plump." Honestly, there's nothing plump about me, more roundish? Okay I'm off the topic. Anywho....I'm currently the biggest member of my family, immediate and otherwise. I think about my weight everyday, almost every second. I won't go into too much detail right now, since this is my first post. Maybe later.........

Here's to the first five!

My scale budged! Hoorah!

I'm excited to tell you the small changes I've made that worked for me, but first I have to say I had a little extra inspiration this week. My friend Bridgett, who is the epitome of class and has a very successful Mary Kay career did some spring cleaning in her expanse of a walk in closet. So, (envision me smiling and bouncing up and down) I got two trash bags full of cast off Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, Brooks Brothers, and Ralph Lauren!! (even a 100 % cashmere sweater). I feel like I won the lottery. The only downside- a few of the items are a little snug. So I chuckled to see Jenny's post about the green pants... because I now have a pair of Banana Republic green capris I need to lose about 5 pounds to fit into.

Now down to business. Unlike Jenny, I am not very successful when I try to stick to a strict diet (Go Jenny for being able to though!) I find it's easier for me to get active and have a treat now and then. Here's what I've done the past few weeks that have made a difference for me.

1. I've started "running". 3 times a week when Dave gets home from work I'm waiting at the door suited up in my running shoes, an old t shirt, and some of Dave's Adidas swooshy pants circa 1995. So I begin clomping my way down my street (which is a pretty busy street in Clemson) all the while being passed by college chicks in spandex and college guys in well.. spandex.
This is the work out I do:
4 min walk ---> 1 min jog
3 min walk 2 min jog
2 min walk 3 min jog
1 min walk 4 min jog
5-10 min walk (cool down)
(I'd like to add that when I first started I was often passed by old women power walking while I "jogged")
I think it's important to remember that it is not all about speed or perfection. It's about getting out there, raising your heart rate, and feeling good about yourself. And it's not about pushing yourself too hard. If it works better for you to walk quickly for a few min then slowly, thats great!
I try to increase the difficulty of the "run" every few days and then sometimes I just need a day off to walk and clear my head. But, I always do a little victory dance at the end and congratulate myself for putting in the effort.

2. Pace yourself. Like Jenny said- its too hard to think "Oh I NEED to lose 40 pounds". It's a lot easier to say "Look, I've lost 2 pounds, I'm about halfway to my goal of 5. Yay me!".

3. Encourage yourself. I stuck post it notes around my mirror that say things like "You're beautiful." "You deserve to take care of yourself". I also made a collage of my fitness (and life) goals and hung it on my fridge. It has a picture of a girl at the beach in her swimsuit, another of a mommy and a baby and it says quotes I like and things I want to remind myself to do (take a walk, set a good example for Aiden...). I recommend this to everyone. It just makes you feel good.

4. Keep a food log. I have a gorgeous friend, Helen who is in fabulous shape, but she still keeps a food log, just so she can be conscience of what she eats. Even if you don't change a thing in your diet, I feel like just being aware of how much is going into your body makes a difference.

5. Reward yourself!!!! Now that I have lost 5 pounds, Dave and I got on the Victoria Secret website and ordered some hot (slightly more sexy than cotton briefs) new underwear.
But, I feel like I deserve a reward every time I finish a work out so, if I am able to run just a little bit faster or longer, or if I just do a really good job eating that day, I get on itunes and download a new song to work out to.
When you reach those big 5s or 10s, get a new dress (wink Vicky), a new shirt, or go get a friend to snap some up to date pics of your hot new look. (Then post them on here so I can see : ) )

6. I pod Groupie Love. I have found that listening to my I Pod really helps me to keep going. You can get new I Pods or any mp3 player at Wal-Mart. The shuffles are pretty cheap. The apple website also has certified refurbished I Pods that are very inexpensive.
Like I said, I reward myself with new songs which makes me excited about going for a jog so I can listen to them. You can also download books on tape and even videos on the new ones!

I am so excited to see and hear all of the good news about your weight loss missions! I hope these tips give you some encouragement. Thank you so much for all of your advice and support! We can do it!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The green pants

I got this pair of green pants for Christmas from my in-laws, and they didn't fit. They are a medium which is something I hadn't worn for a while. But I liked them and I didn't want to take them back because I knew I was losing weight. I stuck them in the drawer with tags still on and the receipt folded up inside them, vowing that I would wear them one day. Every week or so I'd try them on, and every time they were a little closer to fitting, until... YES! They fit! I have been wearing the pants for several weeks and have been meaning to blog about it. It meant a lot to me when I could fit into them.

Actually, I'd suggest this for everyone losing weight. Look in your closet and find a pair of pants (or a shirt or a dress) that almost fits you but is a little too tight. When it does fit it makes you feel like you accomplished something. It also helps you not obsess over the weight # which can be deceiving sometimes, keeps you focused on what you're working towards, and gets the message to your brain that you are in better shape. That's something I've struggled with; I know I am in better shape but sometimes I don't feel like I am. You may think the scale is broken, but your pants don't lie!

I'm sad to say I backslid a little over the past week. I was snacky and didn't make the best choices. Didn't lose any more weight but didn't gain it back either.

My goals are to:
1) Sit on the exercise bike and put my feet on the pedals once a day
2) Lose a pound before my next post!!!

I wouldn't want to get overwhelmed. I already got on the bike tonight and put my feet on the pedals, and once I'd gone to all that trouble I thought, I could pedal a little while. I ended up doing it for about 12 minutes and burning 100 calories! Tomorrow I might try putting on some shoes and walking out the door, and see where that takes me.

Holding steady at 140... (for now!)

Kelly's Progress

My Six Month Adventure...

On April 1st...April fool's day...I will get serious about my weight loss goal. I feel like I have played around with this idea and I have lost a few pounds, but I KNOW I CAN DO BETTER! My husband and I will be going to a good friend's wedding in New Hampshire the beginning October. My husband gets to wear a tux being in the wedding party. I want 2 new dresses and I want them to be smaller! We will be making it a vacation and visiting my DH's family too. I haven't seen some of them since I was pregnant with Braydon.

Starting on April Fool's day sounds funny....but there is no joke here. I won't be the fool. I have approximately 28 weeks. I need to buy a scale for my house this weekend. (I banned them a few years back). I want to lose 1.5 pounds a week. That would make me be 42 pounds lighter. I need a little luck...a lot of prayers...and a ton of self-discipline and will power. Great support from this blog is a definite plus too!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

No, I didn't walk...

That is my confession. I didn't make my goal of increasing my activity unless you want to count me pacing up and down the house while we had storms and tornado warnings going on last Saturday. I have increased my H2O, decreased my soda intake, and avoided that forbidden thing called a scale. I don't like to weigh myself but a couple times a month. I am bloated, cranky, and the smart ones out there know why I refuse to weigh myself right now! I will honestly try to walk this least once.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Bridesmaid Dress

My best friend Anna is getting married in July. Anna is a gorgeous 5'7" blonde with perfect bone structure and an athletic build. For her bridesmaids she chose:
Christie- 5'9 wears skinny jeans... SKINNY JEANS approx 130 lbs
Jenna- 5'7 perfect hour glass approx 135 lbs
Maggie- 5'6 one of those "just can't gain weight" chicks aprrox 100 lbs
Me, Megan- 5'3 approx... way too big for this dress

This wedding is going to be practically our high school/ college reunion. Here's a peak at the guest list (names have been changed to protect the innocent):

Ryan- high school sweetheart, broke up freshmen yr of college- he immediately got buff... I immediately dyed my hair.
Winter- college rival, once drew a swastika on my dog, I poured soda in one of her drawers
Morgan- high school rival, her boyfriend had a crush on me, I replaced her as a lifegaurd after she got fired, I stole her best friend (Anna) enough said
Eric- college boyfriend, I was supposed to be waiting on him... I met Dave
Misty- I asked her to be a bridesmaid in my wedding, never called me back after she found I was pregnant and was keeping my baby, she had had an abortion a year earlier

Among various others who would be secretly thrilled to see I have gotten fat.

How am I going to get into this dress and make everyone say:
a) damn i missed the boat
b) she had a baby? she's a freak of nature
c) wow she hasn't changed
d) all of the above

What's going to work? Teamwork!

Thanks for inviting me to join your blog!! I really enjoyed reading about your life stories- esp Vicki b/c I already knew Jenny.
I just want to say Jenny, you're doing awesome! Keep on posting new ideas and things! It really helps to get some fresh ideas!

Also, Vicky, you look so gorgeous in your wedding picture and your picture with Nolen. I had no idea how much you have overcome. : )

Well, this is me:

I was thin in high school. I was a very active person I ran cross country and track and swam on the swim team from Feb-Aug. I also had several close friends who stuggled with anorexia and bulemia, one even resulting in hospitalization.

I was also under a lot of pressure to be thin and perfect.I had three best friends Anna, Amy, and Summer and between the three of them (not including me) there was a prom queen, a homecoming queen, a valedictorian, a class president, a state champion athlete, and a size d cup size with a 24 inch waist.

In college, I roomied with Summer and Anna. Despite their perfectness I was able to find my niche. I was a little edgy, a little promiscuous and a whole lot of eyeliner. Throw 6 piercings and a short lived stint of pink highlights and you can pretty much envision college Megs.

Anyways, I found the guys liked my corky laid back style and slim but womanly curves. I definitely did not have issues with my appearance.

Then came love, then came marriage, then came Aiden in a baby carriage.

I don't want to be this person I am right now, I don't feel like it's me. My insides do not match my outsides. I'd like to lose 20 lbs. I'm buying the quinoa, now what?

I did it!

I am now down to my goal for mid-March of 140! Yay! I am also down to a small 12 pant size. Here are some tips on how I achieved this and hopefully they can help someone else!

1) Don't rush it. I only worked at losing a couple of pounds at a time and didn't starve myself (couldn't, because I'm breastfeeding). In the past I have tried crazy diets such as "don't eat ANY carbs, but have all the bacon, cheese, and fat you want." That didn't work for me at all, duh. Common sense is key.

2) Find replacements for most of your vices. I replaced a Hershey bar (270 calories, 16 grams of fat) with two squares of Lindt 85% Cocoa extra dark (105 calories, 9 grams of fat). Two squares of Lindt are a lot smaller than a Hershey bar, but it's super-concentrated and two squares is about all I can eat! It also has added benefits of antioxidants.
I've stopped using sugar in my coffee in favor of Splenda, and I use a little skim milk instead of creamer.
When I feel like dominating a big bag of something crunchy, I grab some Cheerios instead of potato chips. Even if you eat the entire box (and we're talking the BIG box) you won't have consumed all your calories for the day. It would also take forever to eat a whole box of Cheerios!
Quinoa makes a quick and easy snack or meal and is not an empty carb like some of the things I may be tempted to eat. If you haven't tried it, it's similar to grits with a somewhat beany taste. You can only get quinoa at Whole Foods as far as I know. Let me know if you need some and I'll pick you up a bag while I'm there. They're about $2.00.
If you start cutting sugar slowly, you'll soon find you're less and less pleased with high-sugar items. Bananas and fruit will start to appeal to you instead of cookies and candy.

3) Ditch your sodas for some water! Even if you drink diet soda. Water makes you feel better and, I don't know, it might help you lose weight! Drink it with lemon if you just can't stomach it plain.

4) Try to sneak in exercise little by little. I have my exercise bike now and I'd love to say I get on it every day for 20 minutes--but I don't. I can't use it while I'm watching Suzi because it'd be dangerous, and if I wait until she goes to bed I am too tired and then can't sleep when I'm done! The only solution is to tell myself I am just going to ride my bike for five minutes. When the five minutes is up, maybe I'll go for ten. If not, at least I've done five minutes! I can do another five later. This also gives me more energy for the rest of the day.

My next goal is to be at 135 and down to a size 10 by the end of April. To achieve that I'd like to plan more of our meals and get into the habit of exercising more regularly. The more weight you lose, the slower it comes off, but I'm going to do my best. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

I HATE to Exercise!

Yeah....I'm the one who hates to walk, run, or go to the gym. I do like to float in water....and I guess swim a time or two. I do like to hike, but not when it is too cold or hot outside. I like to dance.....but who goes to a club and dance when your 30 something? I know. I know. I need to do something. I am at the age that if I don't do anything now, it will be with me for eternity. So, here is my story.
I was thin until I hit 10 or 12 years old. All of a sudden the weight slowly crept on year after year. I was never "fat", but a bit chubby. I would love to be chubby again. Being labeled as obese is for the birds. I would like to lose 50 LBS. Ideally I should lose around 65 lbs. BUT, I know I will never be that skinny girl ever again. I am not being pessimistic....just realistic!
Through high school I always had the extra 10-15 lbs on me. Depending on the right outfit I could hide it well. Then college started....between eating junk food and snacking late at night...the pounds piled on...probably 8-10 pounds a year. If you do that four years in a roll, it really adds up and before you know it your pushing 180. *sigh* I stayed at that weight for a couple years after college, sometimes creeping up and down by about 5 lbs. In 1994 I met my husband and the weight soared out of control. By the time I married in 2000 I was over 200 lbs. Then it got worse. By 2003 I was over 280 lbs. I think a little of that sudden weight gain had to do with depression and suffering from a miscarriage. I really wanted to be a mommy. Apparently, I found comfort in food. Any type of food that wasn't good for you. I developed fertility problems too. I wanted to get pregnant again, and it was mentioned by my OBGYN that my weight could play a factor in my recent fertility problems. I changed little things about my lifestyle. I gave up soda and high calorie drinks and only drank water. I did increase my activity, but I wouldn't call it exercise, and I watched what I ate in moderation. By fall of 2004 I was down over 65 lbs and became pregnant! I ate even healthier being pregnant and instead of gaining weight, I actually lost another 10 lbs. while pregnant. I developed gestational diabetes while pregnant so sweets were out of the question and carbs had to be watched because we all know carbs turn into sugar! I didn't diet, I ate A LOT. I just ate healthier foods and couldn't get enough fruit in me. Watch out produce section, pregnant Vicky could eat all the fruit within minutes! LOL

I breastfed when Nolan came around, so I lost another 10 pounds before I became pregnant with Braydon. BTW- I got pregnant on my own without fertility meds. I was now down to less than 200 lbs. I lost weight when I became pregnant with Braydon initially, but then I did gain about 4-5 lbs. with him. I also breastfed him and went down to 190. goal of 150 didn't seem to be out of reach anymore.
Unfortunately the past 2 years since Braydon has been born I have gained about 28 pounds. I recently started to lose this weight and still have about 18 pounds to go till I get to 190 again. Yes, I weigh 208.5 right now. I blame the high doses of prednisone I have been on the past year. I gain 15-20 pounds every time I take that stupid steroid. I have Lupus and Sjogren's Syndrome and according to my doctors I need steroid therapy. BLAH! OF COURSE I know that if I would exercise just a couple times a week, it would be to my advantage.
It is getting warm outside and my hubby wants to walk and do outdoor activities with the boys. He would like to lose a few pounds too. My problem is by the time I get home from work, I am exhausted. My Lupus is in remission, but the Sjogren's is being ugly right now causing fatigue and stiffness. Am I making excuses? Hmmmm...I guess I really need to give walking a try. I have heard people say that exercise gives them more energy. I will have to test that hypothesis out and let you know!
I will set 2 goals for myself this week. One, drink more water and less soda. Two, go out and walk 2 or 3 times before the end of the week. I'll let you know how I did next week! Wish me luck.