Category Archives: giving back

44 Day Challenge

Did you know it’s 44 days until Halloween arrives? This really begins the Autumn/Holiday season for many. My hubby James and I always have our little tradition. We eat burgers ( now vegan)  and carve pumpkins and drink cider, all watching scary movies. It’s a tradition we honored since our Pittsburgh days. This year we will not let that tradition slide by.

Today I’m starting a 44 day challenge. I’m going to try to show up here daily and share what I’m doing. I’m going to take it Day by day because I may change things up, but my plan is to focus on nutrition, fitness and goals. To show up daily despite my work schedule. I’ve lost 23 lbs but in my opinion I’ve been not working as hard as I can. I watched a video with Tao-Porchon Lynch and she really inspired me. So today begins my challenge. It’s 44 days until Halloween. Let’s do this!! 

No cheat days until Halloween. No pasta. Only whole grain foods in moderation. A little dark chocolate is ok. I’m really going to try to not eat my goodies at our bake sale, just the vegan healthy cookies but in moderation. No refined junk of any kind. I’m going to eat clean vegan. 

Daily Yoga Sun Salutations, and some other workouts. I’m using Melissa Bender Fitness, and my cardio will be walking, running etc. I plan to move 60 minutes a day plus ten sun salutations daily. Legs up a wall before bed. I don’t care if my workout before or after work, if I have time to sit and watch tv I have time to without. 1 hour plus ten sun salutations. Like that Pizza Guy on YouTube says, that’s the rules. Everybody knows the rules, everybody being me. 

The other things I will be adding will be addressed in future posts. What I’m reading, writing, who I’m watching for inspiration. Fun classes I may take, plus tools for self development. Products I use to help me heal and make me feel well again. I’m not sick but my body can be my temple again. Lots of personal goals I’m going to tackle. No procrastination. Today is the day. As I type this we found out an old friend in Pittsburgh PA lost his battle with Lung Cancer. He was only 38. Life is short. Do what you dream of doing today. RIP Chris Pierce. Thank you for your kindness.

RIP Chris

 

WEIGH IN WEIGHT GAIN

I was reading Mantra Wellness Magazine, (photo from the pages of the magazine). I opened the magazine and this was the first page. It totally spoke to me. I messed up, again. I gained 3 of the 13 lbs I lost. Here I am, facing the music and starting over.

Weight loss is a series of ups and downs. You begin all gun go until a holiday or other food related event comes along. All of a sudden you stop tracking and you promise yourself just one bad day. Then there’s leftovers, so one cheat day becomes two. Soon you have lost your momentum. I’ve been there when I was successful in my weight loss the first time around, and I’m there now at the beginning of my second weight loss journey. The key is to catch it, to own your slip up and get back on that weight loss wagon. Get on the scale, face it and get moving. I gained three pounds. My weight is currently 174 lbs. I’m still down ten, and I’m catching this now before I gain the whole ten back. I’m making like a GPS,  I’m yelling recalculating. Here’s how I’m going to get back at it and stop the gain cycle and continue on my wellness/weight loss/fitness journey part two.

The first thing is to access the damage, weigh yourself. You need to know where you are.It’s easy to be in denial. Better to cry over a few pounds now. I weighed myself and tracked my weight. 

My next step is to track all my food, and as a ww member I’m going to try to be in blue dots. That means stay within my healthy range of points, period. I noticed my weight went up when I didn’t track.  When I did track I went over my points. My day begins with 24 oz of water with lemon, and a banana and an apple or whatever fruit I have. I let my body digest it before my daily one cup of coffee. Then my breakfast. Lately I’m eating a garden of life plant based protein bar with my coffee. Hey, I’m on the run and it’s only 5 pts. I’m going to make oat and peanut butter protein balls too. If you are vegan I would love to know some fast and healthy breakfasts that are your favorites. 

Being accountable here helps, so I plan to try to blog daily and try to get better sleep. I have two Siamese cats, and the minute our heads touch the pillow they decide it’s time to party. We have to get better sleep, that’s number one. 

Move daily. Non negotiable. That’s my only fitness rule right now. I’ve been spotty with my fitness so I’m making this one goal to start. Move my body vigorously for 45 minutes to 1 hour daily. I will be more specific later, but that’s my rule. It could be running, walking fast, Melissa Bender Fitness workouts etc. I just have to move it for 45 minutes to 1 hour. I started this on Labor Day. Plus I’m going to also add sun salutations, stretching and legs up a wall pose for circulation. 

Eat clean 80/20. The majority of my vegan diet must be Whole Foods plant based with processed vegan food only occasionally. Tracking every bite. I stopped this and I gained three pounds. It’s ok, I’m painfully human. I may try to not eat past 8 pm, but this may be difficult with my work schedule. I’m going to try. Time to revisit vegan meal prepping. 

So this is my restart of my restart. We are still planning to go to Henry’s Home and Horse Sanctuary soon, definitely this month. Ive been asked by my husband James to go when he can go. I do plan to visit and volunteer regularly after our first visit. There’s a lot going on in our life but this is something I can’t wait to do. I’m also helping a friend with a bake sale for her dog that needs surgery. I will post more about that later. I’m baking vegan goodies!! I believe we are here to be of service to others. Sometimes stress gets in the way, I’m working on ways to destress naturally.

I’m off to get my daily exercise in. I want you to know the road to goal does have potholes, and an occasional thunderstorm or two that can throw you off track. The sun will shine again, just begin traveling your path as many times as need be. The destination will always be there. Love and Light. Rose

 

WEIGH IN MONDAY

Happy Monday to all. Today is my weigh in day, and I stayed the exact same at 173 lbs. Actually last week I weighed 173.4, so technically it’s a loss. I don’t know what happened, but last week I went over my points and my extra weeklies. That doesn’t mean higher calorie, some foods have higher points because of fats and carbs. On the new WW program there are a lot of free foods, lean proteins, fruits, veggies, and vegan proteins like beans and tofu.  This week I will try to eat a little fewer points by focusing more on beans, tofu and fruits and veggies. Tonight I’m making whole wheat angel hair and a low point Eggplant  Parmigiana with tofu. If it turns out I will post my recipe. I make a killer vegan Bolognese and marinara.

My hubby James has to work the next few Mondays, but in August we plan to go to Henry’s Home and Horse Sanctuary as soon as he has a free Monday again.  We are both so excited. The next few weeks will be busy because we have a lot of work. After the first week of August we will be caught up on things, and we can then take the time to go volunteer. It’s something I plan to do on the regular, working with the animals.  We are really working on positive mindset and believing we can accomplish any goal we set our hearts to. 

Going forward on my blog I’m working on time management. I work a lot, and I’m having a little difficulty working on the things I love to do, with my job which is time-consuming and exhausting. I’m grateful for my job and the lovely people I get to work with, but if I’m going to make my goals a reality I need to wake up earlier and have a full day before work. My job is my reality now, so if I want to make things happen I must adjust my morning routine, and wake up a lot earlier. Discipline in the a.m. is something I’m really lacking. 

Here are some things I need to work on. I got the food down, I’m losing weight. I admit though, my fitness routine has been very spotty. I need to incorporate my routine daily. I also have to work on my study time for my American Council of Exercise group exercise certification. I also plan to start blogging more often. Since I’ve started blogging again my weekly posts are consistent, and I’m losing, but I can do so much more. My plan is to share what is working on this second journey of mine, and also get some technical help to make my blog more user-friendly. Down the line I plan to start a YouTube channel. I have one but it’s really not something I’ve ever worked on, and it kind of really sucks. I will relaunch it when I’m ready. To round out my goals, more writing, more submitting writing and maybe looking into some marketing for my first book Camellia in Snow. I also think maybe posting about some things I do to say youthful inside and out may be fun. I will work on my goals, but that means going to bed earlier, sleep is non negotiable for me. I like to shoot for 7-9 hours of sleep nightly. 

I am off for now, drinking my water mixed with coconut water. It really wakes my system up. What goals are you working on? Do you let obstacles get in your way? Do you have a morning routine?

Today I’m writing in my pretty Paris Notebook, all the things small and grand I dream of. Life is beautiful, and dreams are worth dreaming big. It doesn’t matter how old you are, or how much you weigh, or how much money you have. Dreams start in the form of your thoughts. Thoughts become ideas, ideas begin action, and your active involvement in making your thoughts into reality turns into you working on your dream life. It’s like magic. Magic thoughts, make it happen. I plan to. Let’s do this. Love and Light, Rose.

 

WEIGH IN MONDAY

Happy Monday to all. It’s rainy here, but rainy days and Mondays do not get me down. I’ve chosen happiness and I’m going forth with joy and kindness for myself and others.  I lost another pound. Cue my happy, coffee drinking  post weigh in dance. I’m currently 173 lbs. I’m down 11 lbs since I began WW. It’s slow and steady and I feel in control, so it’s perfect to me. I already feel lighter. I’m tweaking my fitness and I’m working with my number one fitness guru Melissa from Melissa Bender Fitness. I’m going back to what has worked in the past. Working on cardio, flexibility and strength.

As I settle into my fitness routine I will post more. I’m losing weight and baking vegan healthy cookies, for myself and others around me. I’m sharing kindness and joy, no longer wallowing in my weight. I ate pasta and tator tots last week, but the difference is I watched my portion control, I tracked everything, and most of my meals are clean and healthy. Saturday night after work my hubby made me veggie burgers and tator tots, such a treat. I skipped the bun! It’s little tweaks here and there that make a difference in your weight loss journey. I never binge anymore, everything is counted. WW sent me my ten pound charm, how cool is that? 

This weekend we have to buy work boots for our visit to Henry’s Home and Horse Sanctuary. I plan to be a regular there if they will have me. My life has its troubles and giving back helps me through the struggles. We all have them, it’s how we get through them that defines us. I started this blog in 2013 with intentions to lose weight and help a charity with each ten pounds I lost. I never dreamed I would gain half my weight back, but I’m so happy to be here doing what I’m doing today. The weight gain and restarting my weight loss is part of my life journey, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m learning so much about myself and growing. That’s a beautiful thing. I realized my success didn’t define me, my kindness defines me. Now I do what I do for my health and my goals, and if I end up looking better great. I’m in it to make a difference and that’s my motivation. 

Thunderstorms today and I love it. As much as I have missed the California sun, I really have grown to appreciate Texas weather. My motto going forward is to Bloom where I am planted. Make a difference in my own backyard. I’ve been baking vegan cookies and they are such a hit, I’m using the money for carrots and apples for the horses. Happy Brand new week. Namaste. Rose 

 

 

 

 

I LOST TEN POUNDS

Happy Monday to all. It’s July, and I love this month. Everything is warm and happy, it’s the best of the summer. I’m starting to really focus on all aspects of my life, and I plan to post more on here what I’m doing to live my best life, and to give back to others and animals. First things first, I lost ten pounds. 

This is the first time I have lost any significant weight in two years. For new readers I slipped back when we moved to Texas from Los Angeles, after losing my Mom and our cat Rascal. It took me a bit to get back to feeling like myself and I believe I am on my way. 

I really enjoy using the WW app to track my points. I have tracked no matter what, it’s important to stay accountable. Another motivational moment for me is when I committed myself to volunteering at Henry’s Home and Horse Sanctuary. They are my first ten pound weight loss charity, and I truly hope to volunteer with them on the regular. I can’t wait to meet the horses and wonderful humans that care for them. Much gratitude to Donna at the sanctuary.  I’m coming for you 20 lbs and a brand new charity, but my intention is to volunteer with the animals long after I pick my next charities. 

My day starts later since I work nights. So right now I’m having coffee as I blog, and after I’m writing down my short-term intentions, and my long-term goals. Some of my long-term goals may seem crazy, but I’m writing them down. Today begins my 30 day yoga challenge with Melissa Bender Fitness, so after I’m done writing I’m stepping on the mat. I will begin with gratitude in the moment, and stay present and grounded. Lots of positive changes are happening, and it all begins first in positive thoughts. 

Follow the 30 day yoga challenge, here is the link to what I’m doing. Melissa is my best friend and also I look up to her as a mentor too. Love and light and reach for the stars. Rose http://www.benderfitness.com/2016/10/daily-yoga-challenge-10-sun-salutations.html

WEIGH IN MONDAY

Today begins my 4th week on WW. I’ve lost a total of 7 lbs but this week I stayed at the exact weight, no gains or losses. I now weigh 177 lbs.

Why didn’t I lose this week? There could be several reasons and none at all. To be honest I’m happy it’s not a gain, sometimes the scale will creep back up a pound or two when you know you did everything right. 

So instead of obsessing what I did wrong, I will begin this week with what I call WW weight loss lessons. One major WW weight loss lesson is to check points before you buy a seemingly innocent treat, and keep treats to a minimum for that matter. Vegan pizza and vegan frozen bars are a lot more points than they are worth. Pizza is great, but for me not this early in my weight loss game. I’m really going to try to eat zero point foods more, and watch my sodium content. Any vegan fun foods I will only eat in my days off and within reason. Wednesday through Sunday it’s pure clean vegan Whole Foods and plant-based eating. I did good but I can do even better.

I am really going to focus on my fitness as I get my food in order. I’m focusing on wellness, health, flexibility, strength and feeling good. I’m fueling my body so I can achieve my fitness goals. 

To wrap up I’m proud to be back in the 170’s, I’m looking forward to going to Henry’s Home and Horse Sanctuary as my first ten pound weight loss commitment. There is no failure, only new beginnings to get it right. Dream big in all you do. The future is a vast ocean of possibilities. Love and Light. Rose 

 

HENRY’S HOME AND HORSE SANCTUARY

Happy Tuesday to all. I weighed in yesterday and lost 1 lb, my weight is now 178 lbs. I’m on my fitness journey, and I’m tracking on my WW app every day. I feel this time I got this. I’m officially on a brand new weight loss journey, and the scale is slowly moving again.

When I began my first weight loss journey my goal was to help a new charity with each ten pounds, and I was successful at my weight loss because I focused on my accountability to the charities I chose. I also focused on being disciplined with my food and fitness, and my fitness goals, but giving back was my main motivation. I believe being of service is my reason I’m here. I’m a work in progress though, I wish to do so much more. 

As anyone who knows me well, I love to help others, humans and animals. There’s a list on the various charities I assisted previously on my sidebar. 

My first charity for my second round is a charity that has touched my heart. I started following their Facebook page after Hurricane Harvey. They are a beautiful Horse Sanctuary named  Henry’s Home and Horse Sanctuary. I’m just so moved by all they do, for animals and humans.

My plan is to volunteer after I lose my first ten pounds, and my trainer Bethany is accompanying me. I’m really looking forward to meeting the animals and helping any way I can. I couldn’t be more honored and humbled to visit the sanctuary and give back a little.

Below is information on Henry’s Home and Horse Sanctuary plus links. You can find them on Instagram @henryshome. I find when you give a little you receive so much more in return. I also believe there is nothing better than helping others when you are in a crisis, it helps you heal. I’m healing and growing. Love and Light to all. Rose 

Their Programs with links below

  1. Horse Sanctuary Program: We provide a permanent home for horses and other farm animals who have been through neglect or starvation, or are surrendered to prevent going to auction/slaughter.
  2. Herdmate [Volunteer] Program: We are a simple, loving and nurturing family who pitch in to care for our sanctuary grounds and our four-footed members, as well as this nonprofit business.
  3. Horses & Heroes R&R Program: We provide a variety of Riding & Recreation opportunities for veterans and first responders, and their immediate family members, always at no cost to them.
  4. Horses & Heroes Equine Therapy Program: We provide confidential equine assisted psychotherapy for veterans and first responders, and their immediate family members, always at no cost to them.

Contact Henry’s Home

For General Questions or to schedule a visit or a volunteer orientation:

Donna Stedman
Phone: 281-292-1110
Email:donna@henryshomehorsesanctuary.org

Mailing Address: 5 Alladdin Lane, The Woodlands, TX  77380

Sanctuary Location:
Camp Strake Rd, Grand Central Park,
Conroe, TX 77304

https://www.facebook.com/henryshomehorseandhumansanctuary/

http://henryshomehorsesanctuary.org/contact-us/

 

 

 

 

 

Weight Watchers Online

Sometimes you need help and guidance. I recently started working out with my personal trainer Bethany, my best friend Melissa Benderfitness has amazing fitness and yoga videos I follow, but I was struggling with food. I finally caved in after realizing I can’t do it alone and I joined Weight Watchers Online and downloaded the app. They now call themselves WW and their latest program is called freestyle. It focuses on good nutrition but no food is outlawed.

I’m vegan but occasionally I like vegan fun foods, I can lose weight, have my vegan cake and eat it too. Portion control will help me feel in control, and I will learn to focus again on clean nutrition but not freak out if I have a little vegan treat once in a while. For me WW gives me power over food, anyone who suffers eating disorders understands the power food can have over you. I can’t live like that any longer. Today is my day two and I feel great. This program is livable and sustainable.

My  journey includes fitness. I am doing cardio five to six days a week. I’m working out with my trainer once a week, but soon as I learn what she’s teaching me I will do the workouts 2-3 times a week plus Melissa Benderfitness videos and yoga. I’m on this. I try to do my cardio outdoors when I can, there’s nothing like mobile meditation with nature as your backdrop. Below is me in May 2017 right before my Mom passed away and our move from LA to Houston.  I was in great shape, I did it once, I’m going to do it again. 

Well I’m off for now. I picked a charity for my next ten pound weight loss. I will post soon, I want to use the laptop for that so I can include all of their links. Monday I weighed in at 184.4. It’s ok, I got this. Love and Light to all. We are on this journey together, we can lift each other up as we each go about trying to reach our destinations. The journey is the reward. 

 

 

 

GOALS

Happy Friday to all. As I start anew I’m starting to set goals again. Im fighting some fatigue this second time around, I work late and usually I don’t get to bed late. I may do a lot of my workouts at 11 or 12 midnight since I’m so wired after work. My fatigue only hits me in the morning when I wake up, so prepping meals and giving myself time to wake up and have a morning routine before work is easier for me and my schedule. 

I am so blessed to have Bethany as my trainer, and to have Melissa Bender Fitness videos and guidance. I may join WW online to help me with my food monitoring. It’s a great program and it takes the fear away of food being good vs bad, it’s all food. As a vegan I’m trying to make sure I get everything I need, but WW will help with little splurges within reason. It helps keep me from binges. I’m signing up Monday. Today I weighed in at 183 lbs. 

My trainer Bethany and Melissa Bender Fitness are the experts,  but as a former dancer and this being my second go at fitness, I do have a lot of knowledge about proper form and the body. I’m beginning my studying for the American Council of Exercise group exercise certification, and I hope to take the exam in the fall. After being in the Richard Simmons Video, and taking two classes with him weekly I was so inspired. I thought, this is what I love, I can do this to. So my plan is to pass the exam and teach upbeat, inspirational dance aerobics classes like he did. I’m a dancer and this is in my heart and soul, it’s the one thing missing from my life. Once a dancer, always a dancer. I will leave the heavy exercise to the professionals, and do that only as a student and not a teacher. My plan is to learn to teach all the areas I excel in, stretching, dance, etc. I’m really excited about this new chapter and I have quite a lot of work to do to get there. 

I have chosen a new charity to get involved with once I lose ten pounds. I’m going to first lose 3 more pounds since I went up 3 lbs since Easter. So when I reach 170 lbs I will be volunteering alongside my trainer Bethany at a local non-profit near and dear to my heart. I will announce this Monday, the day I join WW online and do another weigh in. We also plan to register for a 5k locally and take a yoga class. I’m dying to study ballroom but unfortunately that’s not on my budget at the moment. More goals to come but I think this is a good head start.

It’s Mothers Day weekend and I wish everyone who is a Mother a Happy Mothers Day. That includes all the wonderful women who take care and love their companion animals. It’s your Mothers Day too. Happy Unconditional Love Day. Mothers Day and May 21st are not easy days for me, since I lost my Mom May 21st 2017. I send love and hugs to my sisters who feel exactly like I do, and all of you who also lost a beloved Mother. My Mother would expect me to keep going and never give up on my goals. She would always say to keep trying, all they can say is no. 

Love and Light 

Rose

 

WEIGH IN MONDAY

Happy Monday to all? Today is weigh in Monday and I lost 2 lbs, cue happy dance. That brings me to 182 lbs. I’m down 7.6 lbs. I’m keeping a journal of my meals and calories on the Loseitapp and I’m using Dr Greger’s Daily Dozen App to keep track of my vegan nutrition. I’m doing this six days a week and one day a week I allow a vegan cheat day. On that day I eat whatever vegan foods I like, but I do my best to keep my calories in check. 

Losing weight through stress or when you are in a personal crisis is not easy. For me what’s working this second try around is I’m focusing on my nutrition and my fitness. My meal plan six days a week is very clean, with very low salt, no oils and just a bit of raw sugar in my coffee. Using both apps keeps me accountable. My energy is definitely up since I started the Dr Greger Daily Dozen. My one vegan cheat day a week allows me to eat the vegan foods I love. This week I’m choosing that day to be Halloween.

Another bonus is how incredibly inexpensive this way of eating is. Lentils, tofu, split peas, canned beans no salt, fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables, quinoa, Ezekiel bread, oats, flax seeds, no salt peanuts and no salt peanut butter. It’s not always easy to tick off everybox, yesterday  I missed cruciferous vegetables; but that’s ok. I strive to each day do better. 

I am also working on some new and exciting projects, I also plan to waitress more than usual, and I’m continuing forward with this blog with the intent to post more regularly and I plan more videos in YouTube.

Dr Greger recommends exercise daily and I may start my workouts in the evening on my work days to be able to manage everything I’m working on. I bought an amazing planner from Barnes and Noble to keep everything organized.

It is all about a positive mindset. Stress gets me, and sometimes I feel like I’m drowning in it; than I remember I’m a good swimmer. Right now im treading water through my struggles and my eye is on my health, fitness, strength, flexibility, and longevity. I’m proud to be a plant eater. 

Stay tuned for next post when I announce how I’m doing my small part to help others in the community I live in with the wonderful people I work with.

When you find yourself struggling, it helps to help others.

Namaste’

Rose