I lost five pounds my first week back on program. That brings me back into the 160’s at 168 lbs. I am on it and dedicated. Back on the road to goal. This post is short and sweet, my weigh in Wednesday update. A few things I plan to do differently this time. I will not change my weigh in day, my friend and author Marsha Miller gave me that advice and I realized when I started playing with my weigh in day that is when things started to go south. Routine, routine. I also will track even bad days, and move on from them. I noticed in the past when I slipped I thought I could skip tracking and jump back in. It is not always that easy. So here it is, and here I am. A big improvement than I was a few weeks ago. I got this, you got this. Let’s do this. Happy Losing, lets be big losers together.
If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.
That quote sums up what I need to do since I moved from my beloved West Hollywood CA to Houston, Texas. It’s time to make radical changes in my thoughts and attitude. I am starting over fresh, in this blog and my goals; to commit to posting at least every other day and to start over in my weight loss/fitness journey. As soon as I settle in I will be looking for new charities to help again. No more complaining I miss California, as I plan to embrace all of the positives of where I am living at the moment. I have landed in Texas, but I plan to take off in my goals and dreams. This is a gift of a new beginning. There is beauty when you open your eyes and look for beauty.
Since 2014, We moved from LA to San Francisco, from San Francisco to LA, and recently from LA to Houston. That is one move a year. My husband James was unemployed for over a year and my Mother passed away recently. Sometimes I am surprised we are both still standing. That was a lot of changes and a lot of new beginnings, but each new beginning is just that; a new beginning. Life happens, we adjust, we falter; and we finally pick up the broken pieces and put them back together again. We figure it out. I am doing that now, I am figuring it out.
For the first time since I began this blog I gained weight. It started with 6 lbs and went up to 13 lbs. I realized I needed to go back to #weightwatchersonline before it was too late. It’s been one week and tomorrow is my first weigh in day. Starting over again at 173 lbs. I went from 159 lbs up to 173 lbs but now the scale will be moving in my favor again. The goal is to treat this blog as brand new, with new excitement and ideas.
Today I met with a friend I know from The Richard Simmons community who also happens to be an author. It was an inspirational lunch, and I got my copy of her book signed. She even brought me a copy of her children’s book that just came out. Her first book, An Exodus From Obesity is filled with so much insight from someone who lost a lot of weight. Wisdom, inspiration and life’s lessons. I also picked up a copy of The Alchemist. Everyone who read it said it was life changing literature. It is just what I need for my new tomorrow.
To Tomorrow, and new beginnings and life’s changes. Out with the old and in with the new.
“Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must; just never give up.”
― Dean Karnazes
I watched a bird walking the other day, he stepped with one foot ever so slowly, and stepped out with the other foot; walking without a care in the world at his own pace. He is not on a schedule, he is just walking tuned into his own rhythm. No worrying about the pace of another bird, he is just free in his graceful moment.
I feel in weight loss, fitness and running we often compare ourselves to others. Sometimes we feel we cannot compete so why bother. I am here to tell you it doesn’t matter what anyone else is doing. Yes, we should cheer them on and be happy for them, but at the same time everyone has a different journey. If you commit to something just commit to doing it to the best of your ability. Do not mind what others think, and I think you will be surprised at the amount of support you get on your road to fitness and new health.
Today I joined a Monday running club. I have navigated so many changes recently it left my head spinning, than I took a spill last week and that almost left me down for the count. I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to run today but with the help of my new Saucony running shoes I was able to run a 5K this evening. Of course I ran at my own speed and listened to my body. I also met one of the veteran runners and she gave me a piece of runner’s wisdom; there is no fast or slow just your own personal pace. She also runs a Thursday running club I may join soon.
Tonight I will ice my knee and stretch but I am so proud I ran my first personal 5K since the move to Houston. There will be time for me to work on my speed, but today I am happy that I ran 3.1 miles without stopping. I am happy in the moment. No matter what your level is, be happy in the moment. You are doing more than you did yesterday, be proud and pat yourself on the back. I am working with Melissa Bender Fitness to get back to a formal workout and running schedule. Today I am proud in my moment, I put one foot in front of the other and ran to my own rhythm.
If you spend your time looking back at everyone else you will never cover any distance, keep your eye on your path. You can do it and I can do it. Here is to the beginners, the novices, the people who are starting over as well to those who are faster and inspire us to keep going. Here’s to each and every one of us. Hurrah to day one. Are you with me? Let’s see where this new path goes. Happy Monday to all. Let’s do this.
With losing my Mother and my move from LA to Houston I was not able to deliver my blankets to the Midnight Mission, but my wonderful friend Luke delivered them for me and volunteered at an event they held to help the homeless. I am beyond grateful to Luke. I am as good as the company I keep. He is a wonderful friend and the best of company and I am honored to know him. Thank you Luke.
Below is my thoughts about the significance of blankets to those who sleep on the streets. Much love and Light to all. If you have ideas for future charities in and around The Woodlands Texas and Houston Texas hit me up. I have more weight to lose and I would like to continue my efforts to help those in need.
Happiness is a warm blanket.
Today I had some extra time to myself when a friend cancelled on our morning coffee. It was extra time to do nothing but to snuggle with my two Siamese cats and a big fluffy blanket. As I lay there completely content to be idle, my mind started to reflect how lucky I am to have such a simple yet happy moment blanketed from all the woes found outside our front door.
A blanket is one of those items you probably never think about, but think how attached you are to it. A blanket comforts your body and your soul. On a hot summer night do you still curl up with your blanket? It is much more than an item that keeps you from getting cold, it is a security blanket. A blanket protects in the wee hours of the night. Even our beloved pets feel safe when there is a cozy blanket to curl up in. A blanket is warmth, and warmth is love.
For the homeless a blanket is all of these things and so much more. A blanket is a safety net from the elements of the street, a barrier against all the dangers that exist when you dwell without four walls to keep you safe. To a homeless person a blanket is shelter, a soothing hug in the middle of the night, a coat to keep you warm. A blanket is a veil of privacy, a sleeping bag, a layer between you and the mean streets. To a homeless person a simple item like a blanket is home.
This wraps up my latest Charity Project. New blankets were delivered by Luke for the homeless at The Midnight Mission in Downtown Los Angeles. Thank you again Luke, you rock. http://www.midnightmission
As I type my two Siamese cats Rascal and Spanky are in dreamland curled up with a blanket and probably content to be there all day. Creature comforts are so important for both humans and animals.
Much love and light.
Chasing goals and trying to help others is my aim
Losing a loved one knocks you down,and then you get back up and the memories knock you over again. It is a never-ending cycle, this grief stuff. I guess I just need to navigate my way around the emotional grenades and go on, and we must go on.
Losing weight after losing a loved one, this is what is on my mind at the moment. Nothing knocked me down, nothing until I lost my Mother. I made it to my lowest weight on this journey, 159 lbs and I did it through a move from LA to San Francisco, my husband’s job loss and a move back to LA. I kept going through all of those life changes, and life did not break me and I never gained a pound. I kept losing and I am proud to say I did it, until the last month.
Now life after losing my Mother left me with a few pounds of extra weight. I admit I fell of the wagon. That’s the thing about wagons, they keep going, you just have to catch up and jump back on. I am committing to my healthy lifestyle and workouts and goals, it is not easy now. Our new kitchen is barely set up but I can do this. It starts today, I know how to do this and I know how to get to where I am going. I am back on the wagon and on the road to all of my goals. I will lose the 10 lbs I gained and get to my goals.
I am about to run to the grocery store, my hubby James is working and we need something healthy to eat. I am going to wear my runners belt and run there even with this heat and humidity. I plan on making a schedule soon, and tomorrow I have an interview to work in a local restaurant for some extra cash for my goals and our new life. I will post my workout/running/yoga schedule once I begin my job and new routine. No more slacking off.
I would love to know how you kept working towards your goals through a life crisis. What tips do you follow to keep at it? We are all here to inspire each other.
So much love and Light
I like to consider myself unique. I believe in nature vs nurture. I believe my soul comes from somewhere else and this body is just the shell in which I walk my days. Or so I convinced myself.
And then there is home and you. Not the California home I claim as my own, but the city where you raised us. Cleveland, Ohio and a magical childhood despite the struggles, but isn’t life a magical trip? The hardest part of it all is loss. Coming home is truly bittersweet, full of celebration tainted with the sour taste of regret.
My first love, I have been your reluctant twin, believing I am an original when in reality I am just a carbon copy of you. Different but so much the same. You were beauty and fire married with humor and light. I am just the prism reflecting your existence.
I cry uncle, I cry when I don’t want to cry, I cry wolf. I cry.
Birdsong reminds me there is yet another plane to catch, the one thing I should have done long ago. I like to believe you will be flying on the wings of my plane. Drinking Dewars and soda with a Jane Austen novel
In hand; cussing at the flight attendants and causing a beautiful raucous.
In memory of my best friend, My Mother
These are the times that try men’s souls.
That quote really speaks to me, ever since we left Los Angeles for San Francisco in the autumn of 2014 my life has been a roller coaster. So many twists and turns that I am surprised I am still standing. After the move to San Francisco my husband James was laid off, a sudden move back to LA, my Mother passing away and another move to Houston would have broken the strongest person indeed. But here I am, sitting in Houston, Texas drinking water and Starbucks in the public lounge of my apartment building and I lived through it all. Here I am, a little worse for wear; with a damn cold and a damaged soul. As soon as my body heals ( my heart will take more time), I plan to get back into my workout and running routine. I plan to jump back into my goals even though I feel at times there is a brick sitting on my chest. Losing a parent is no joke, it is like there is life before the loss and life after. I often wonder if I will return to my jovial self, I often wonder how do people heal from such a tremendous loss. Through it all I made my lowest weight, 159 lbs, and after my Mother passed away I gained 7 lbs which brings me back up to 166 lbs. Time to get back to work. My Mother passing was the only time I fell off the diet wagon, it was the only time I slipped up and gained weight.
I just returned from my first trip home to Cleveland, Ohio in years. I went for my Mother’s Memorial party and I was reunited with family and my hometown friends. I ain’t gonna lie, this weight loss blogger was not thinking about my healthy diet for the last few months. In Cleveland I think I was on the hometown food tour. My Mother’s Memorial party was a beautiful tribute to everything she was about. My sister Frankie, and her friends Shar and April pulled it off like pro’s and my sister Gina and Rosita out did themselves on the sauce, meatballs, pork and spaghetti. It was wonderful seeing my sisters, my nieces,and my childhood friends and I hope to see them more often. My original girls, my sisters, my loves. Frankie, Dona, Gina, and me. The girls I look up too, all four of them. Each one inspires me to be better and do better just like Mom did.
So here I am again, navigating yet another home. I have so many goals, and accomplishments I am most proud of to date. I will jump back in and get to work. The first step was stepping on the scale, and I am happy that the damage was not too extreme. Time to begin anew in a brand new city. To be strong and emulate the strongest female I have ever knew, my Mother.
Good afternoon to all, I am still on west coast time, but I am adjusting. For those of you who follow my Facebook page you know my husband James and I just made the trek from Los Angeles to Houston, Texas. This was not an east decision, but we both decided the opportunity for his career was too good to pass up. Here I am again in yet another transition, and this one was particularly tough because as we were moving my Mother passed away. A lot to deal with in such a short time. For us, ever since we left Los Angeles in 2014 for San Francisco everything has been a bit more challenging, but we got through our crisis. The hardest thing we faced was a sudden loss of a loved one, it is one of those things you feel you may never recover from. Below is a story about my Mother Shirley, she was truly a beautiful soul and unique character. She is the love of my life.
I have learned many lessons about life and loss, and how time is so precious. I promise to see all family, both of our families from here on out. My fear of flying I will deal with, there are loved ones to see. I fly home Friday for a memorial dinner in honor of my Mother.
I also wish my dear Mother in Law Julie a very Happy Birthday. I have the best in-laws and I cannot wait to see them soon, even if it means bringing them to us in Texas. As I work on my goals and plans it is so very important to spend time with loved ones, family and friends. I will keep in touch better going forward.
In the time since 2014, no matter how challenging things got, I never gained a pound. I stayed on my goals and accomplished a lot of new goals with my writing and my weight loss and fitness goals. I was on it, until the last few weeks. I fell off program for a few weeks, and life and loss showed me how incredibly human I am. I know I have put on a few pounds, and as soon as the movers arrive with our stuff and my scale I will post exactly how much weight I have gained. My blankets I collected are being delivered at the end of June. I plan on looking for more charities to assist in my new home.
So here I am, A die-hard Californian in Texas and embarking on day one today. No more treating my body like it is a trash can, back to honoring this body as the temple it is. It is the home where my soul dwells and I will treat it with the respect it deserves.
I will keep this short and sweet, as I begin anew in another new home. I can say today I have met two new friends, and learned a lot about my new community. I plan on posting what I plan to do as I move forward, including diet and my benderfitness workouts. I also plan on starting a Youtube channel as I work towards my goals in my new home. I am very proud to say I finally got my book Camellia in Snow into the famous Book Soup on the iconic Sunset Strip, so LA I will be returning. This was a goosebumps moment indeed.
For now, hello Texas I embrace you with an open heart and open mind. Thank you for this chance to begin anew. I found my first Texas tree, and how unique is it? It looks like an open hand reaching out for the heavens. I plan on treating my life with the same reverence, and making it my mission to help people more than ever.
As I sit here typing on this keyboard there are a million things for me to do, a million and one to get done in a little time. All I wish to do after my run is to sit outdoors with a book that leaves me feeling better about life and the world around me. A book that makes me think and feel deeply.
Here is a list of the top 3 books that make me think, books I often go to over and over again. Some of these books may be inspiring in a different way, maybe motivating you to do more for someone else or to volunteer with seniors. These books make us reflect about the beauty of being alive and the consequences of our actions, and whether or not we use our time to give back to those who need it most. Life is about the connections we make. These are 3 of my very favorite reads. I hope you like them as well.
MATTIE J.T. STEPANEK
Reflections of a Peacemaker
“I want to be a poet, a peacemaker and a philosopher who played.”
Before I ever embarked on my poetry writing journey I devoured Mattie’s books. Mattie was so wise beyond his years. His optimism for life was contagious, he knew the disease he was fighting was terminal but he always showed a reverence for life and living. All he wanted was to spread peace, kindness and compassion to all, He was an angel in human form. I recommend all of his books, but you can start with this collection of his profound poetry. It will make you think, it will make you cry, it will remind you how beautiful it is to just be alive, to hug your favorite dog and share laughter and love with those around you. He will teach you how to be a peacemaker.
I write about anything that touches the essence of my existence. What I witness, what I feel, what I think, what I fear, what I treasure. I write about life, which is our greatest gift.” –Mattie Stepanek, 1990-2004
MANY THINGS TO TELL YOU
Natural poetry by people living in nursing homes.
Thomas E. Heinzen Ph.D.
This book I came across while browsing a book store in Astoria, Queens. It was then I first got an opportunity to publish my own work by the publisher that published this book; a book that will totally make you think and cry. It is natural poetry from elderly people living in nursing homes. Thomas E. Heinzen goes into nursing homes and takes down the poetry, the feelings, the remembrances of those living in nursing homes. A profound read. Make sure to have a box of tissues nearby.
THE RED LETTER DIARY
Reclaiming a life through the pages of a Lost Journal.
Lily Koppel found an old diary in a steamer trunk in a dumpster in New York City, what follows is a fascinating tale of a young woman named Florence Wolfson and her diary from 1929 to 1934. The diary was reunited with its author in 2003 and it gave an aging woman a new lease on life and living in the twilight of her years. A must read. Everybody has a story, and this is one to definitely add to your reading list.
One hundred year old trees still recycle themselves and come out with new flowers. Recycle yourself. Know that nature gives you the clues to living.”
Reinvention, I feel like I have been mastering the art of reinvention as of the last few years. Like Tao Porchon-Lynch I often look to the trees for wisdom and inspiration. They are our pillars of wisdom, they reinvent themselves but always grow more beautiful with each passing bloom. I try to always look up to them, they are my role models. I am always in the process of shedding my leaves and patiently waiting for my blossoms to emerge.
I am not going to sugar coat it, the last two years have been challenging to say the least. Soon I will write about the crisis I was in and what is to come in the second half of 2017. My Mother has been ill in ICU in Cleveland, Ohio but she improves a little each day. I am so grateful to all my friends for keeping her in their prayers. If she can get through, I can conquer the world. This is my Mother below, at 15 in the black bathing suit. What a beauty.
I am most proud that as a weight loss blogger going through a challenging few years that I kept all my weight off despite the changes, the plateaus, and the hard moments that came my way. A move to San Francisco from West Hollywood, a move back to West Hollywood was just a a portion of our hardships. One could just throw in the towel and I admit there were a few times that I contemplated quitting. A good friend talked me out of it, so here I am moving forward.
My weight is still holding strong at 159 lbs and I am back counting my Weight Watchers points, and eating clean most of the time. The 80/20 rule works for me, I eat clean and leave a little wiggle room for special treats. I use Weight Watchers to keep my portions in control and to keep me from obsessing over good and bad food. It is food and I am grateful for it, and I am learning balance as I lose weight and get fit and strong.
Speaking of fitness, I did slack off there a little. I fell and injured my knee and my shoulder has been injured. Tomorrow I am starting a Melissa Bender 30 day Challenge and I plan to work on my running. I hope to be able to run to the Santa Monica Pier from my West Hollywood Home in the end of the month. I can do it and so can you. Join me on my quest to be more fit and strong and to finally get to my elusive goal weight.
Love and Light
Good Morning to all, and what a beautiful Monday it is here in West Hollywood. I am off today and tomorrow, wrapping up my days of cat sitting two beautiful Lilac Siamese. Noodles and Peaches are my other Siamese loves, and my cats have been missing me so it will be time to go home.
It is weigh in day and I am so happy I stayed the same at 159 lbs, I skipped the last few weeks. My scale broke, and I got frustrated with things. I am still 24 lbs to goal, and with everything going on in my life I admit to having just a few cheat days. Friday night I ate a huge tuna sub from subway, and I definitely felt ill the day after. It made me realize that my eating plan is not just about weight and appearance. It is about how I feel, my health and well-being. I had heartburn for the first time in a very long time, and I didn’t even recognize the symptoms. If you can see from the graph above I have plateaued again since February, but that is ok, No weight gains is great for me.
I decided on Sunday to get back on track, still counting my points but going back to an anti-inflammation diet and every Monday I can deviate just a little. That way I am eating not to lose weight only, but to continue to feel good and energetic. Mondays will be the only day I consume things like flour. I believe in this type of program but I also know it is good to allow treats and deviations, just not all the time.
Here is a link to a good list of food for this type of eating from Melissa Bender Fitness. http://www.benderfitness.com/2017/01/anti-inflammatory-diet-grocery-list.html
Today I am reveling in the fact the scale stayed the same. I feel good, and I will not be deviating this day because I am getting back on track. Next Monday will be my semi cheat day. Today it is all non processed foods with lots of produce.
My knee is healing and I feel my shoulder is too, so soon I will hit the pavement running again and start my work out schedule. I decided to rest so I would not be down for the count for longer than need be. I listened to my body even though I wanted to ignore it, and I am feeling so much better now. I have weaned myself off any pain pills for my knee too, I do not need them anymore and they made me feel awful. The last few weeks I have been walking but that is it. It is hard to slow down but I am healing.
That is all for today. I am going to go down to the pool and take a dip, or if it is too cold go in the jacuzzi. I am celebrating that the scale stayed the same, it will be much easier now to get back on track.
It’s a lifestyle not a diet. Love and Light to all.