Category Archives: going the distance

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

 

LOSING WEIGHT IS A PROCESS

Losing weight is a process, in the beginning it’s easy but sticking it out takes extra willpower. Life gets sticky, and it gets in the way. It’s easy to fall of the wagon and stop the healthy patterns you’ve developed in the beginning of your weight loss journey. You will know when this happens, and when you realize it nip it in the bud. 

This week was challenging to say the least. Nothing worth mentioning just adulting and all that comes with it. I didn’t track for days. I almost went for vegan whoppers at Burger King on nights when work was slow and stressful. Waitressing has bad days and bad weeks, it’s normal but when you go into work and stand around it makes you question things. In the end it’s is the way of working in a restaurant, good days and bad days. It always seems like bad days come when you are stressed. Time to reboot and recalculate, like a gps. 

So today I recalculate, I’m trying to check my mood and mindset. I’m back to tracking. I’m planning for Monday and a better and more productive week. Writing my weekly goals on Sunday night. I’m going to try to stress less and be happy in the moments, even the mundane moments that drive me mad. No reason to slip up on my weight loss goals because of a bad week. It’s a marathon and not a sprint, this road to weight loss goals. 

Love and Light

Rose

CHEAT DAYS

Happy Wednesday to all. I had two cheat days this week, Easter’s vegan meal and leftovers the day after. I did not overeat at all, but the high fat vegan food just made me feel awful. It was high sodium and it caused me high anxiety. This made me realize it’s too soon in my new weight loss journey for cheat days. 

Do cheat days help or harm? Do they throw off your mindset of wellness and health? For me, at this moment they do. I feel cheat days in the beginning of my weight loss journey just put me back where I started. I have not yet earned my wellness, fitness and health. Down the line when I’ve mastered my plans I can have the occasional splurge , but for now it’s a big no. I don’t get cravings when I’m consistent. Health is just too important to me. 

Are cheat days a yay or nay for you? How far along are you in your weight loss/fitness/ wellness journey? For now I staying the course with my whole foods plant based lifestyle. Vegan junk food will always be there for when I need it. 

Current weight week of 4/22/2019 is 180lbs, after a 9 lbs loss since January 2019

Love and Light

Rose 

MINDSET

Happy Thursday to all. I’m still blogging from my phone. Not having a working computer is not a setback for me. I’m just adjusting to whatever tools I have on hand. I committed to blogging daily again, and I will do so no matter the obstacles. It’s really helping me stay on track with my food. I’m on it, I’m accountable, I’m not perfect, but I’m doing it every single day. It’s not easy to do this on the phone, the keyboard is sensitive so if things look less than stellar my apologies. 

Mindset. Even though I’m really doing great with my food I admit this week my mindset is struggling. So much stress this week since we got back, so much to think about and decisions to be made. I admit I’m completely overwhelmed and had quite a few crying moments this week. I’m trying to pull myself out of this quagmire I’m in. That means exercise and sleep. This week my sleep has been compromised and when you are fatigued you cannot think clearly. 

I had a chat with one of my dear friends. He reminded me how strong I am. He said for me to be able to stay so focused on eating clean is a big accomplishment. I have to admit he’s right. I’m staying the course, I did the standard American diet crime and gained the weight but that’s in the past. I’m getting back to being the person who started this blog; strong yet not perfect, but one who doesn’t give in or give up. 

Day seven since I’m back. Seven days at being accountable to my word. I love the book the four agreements and the quote from the author. I will leave you with this. 

Always be impeccable with your word. 

Don Miguel Ruiz

Love and light

Namaste’

Rose

 

 

 

 

RUN, WALK, CRAWL

“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. 

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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.

Namaste’ 

Rose

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END OF A CRISIS

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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.

http://lebomag.com/what-my-mother-gave-me/

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.

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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.

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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.18838877_10155246030878617_1431367025370470149_n

 

 

 

REINVENTING YOURSELF

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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.”

Tao Porchon-Lynch

 

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.

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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.

http://www.benderfitness.com/2014/05/original-30-day-workout-challenge.html

Love and Light

Rose

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HAPPY NEW YEAR

The new year stands before us, like a chapter in a book, waiting to be written. We can help write that story by setting goals.

Melody Beattie

Happy New Year. I cannot believe 2017 is upon us. I actually love New Years, because I love the idea of starting over and reinvention. It could be as small as starting fresh on a Monday morning or taking a big leap and committing to your goals as the clock strikes midnight on a brand new year. I am so ready for this year and all of my goals; weight loss and fitness blog goals, personal goals and artistic goals. Let’s do this 2017.

I believe for me 2016 was a transitional year. A lot of good happened but most of the year was spent working on a move from San Francisco back to LA and dealing with the nuances of settling into a new home. I did hit my lowest weight in 2016 since beginning my weight loss/charity project. I am half way to my weight loss goal.

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Besides my weight loss one of my proudest accomplishments was being featured in my first print magazine, Asana Journal, International Yoga Magazine. Check it out.

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I lost my way a little on my blog, a very busy holiday season at work really wore me out. I also went five months without a cheat day on my diet, and then I did take a little time to enjoy holiday food and celebrate life. I admit it, eating off program left me feeling lethargic and ill. I learned a lot over my diet hiatus, I like eating healthy and exercising and when I eat unhealthy foods I feel unhealthy. I am back to treating my body like a temple. I am following the 80/20 rule. Eat healthy 80% of the time and leave 20% open for occasional treats.

My first commitment of the new year is to get back to posting regularly on this blog, at least every other day if not daily. I am making a resolution to my weight loss and fitness goals. I am currently collecting blankets for The Midnight Mission, and following my original format one charity per each ten pounds. I will deliver the blankets to the Mission as soon as I lose my next ten pounds. That is what I do, I lose weight and I do something for charity. It is a win, win.

Starting on January 2, 2017 I am beginning Melissa Bender 30 day fitness challenge Here is the link to her original 30 day fitness challenge.http://www.benderfitness.com/2014/05/original-30-day-workout-challenge.html

I have many fitness goals, including yoga and running goals. I will revisit my fitness bucket list within the next few weeks. I am motivated and ready to begin anew. Who is with me?

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CRISIS CHALLENGES

It is Thanksgiving week and it never escapes me how lucky I am, despite being in what seems to be a long-term financial crisis. I keep dieting and exercising through my challenges. This week we had yet another disappointment, but I am not going to allow myself to wallow in my woes. I took a moment yesterday, cried in my coffee over conversation with my dear friend Mary. I shared with her some things that concern me about being in a financial crisis as a weight loss blogger. My friend is a fixer type of friend, she is completely giving and the kind of person who tries to come up with solutions to your issues. She is amazing and I am lucky to have her around the corner. I am thankful indeed for all of my friends, family, my husband James and our beloved Siamese cats Rascal and Spanky. I am thankful for life.

I decided to do a quick post and share my thoughts and concerns about being in a financial crisis and how it affects my blog, These thoughts are ridiculous to me when I type them up, but they are my feelings. Being in a financial crisis puts a limit on a lot of spending. If you know me, you know I am more interested in helping others, in reveling in nature than I am about material possessions. With that said, everyone likes nice things, and I am not immune to that fact. If you follow fellow weight loss bloggers and well as fitness bloggers it seems a lot of the things they post I cannot post because of my situation. I feel like I do not measure up. This is not a pity statement, rather a way to get it out and share and to come up with other ways to be a motivational weight loss blogger during my lean time. I love that I said lean, because despite my crisis, I can say I accomplished my lowest weight on my blog. I did it even though there were times I wanted to dive head first in a vat of chocolate cake batter. It has been five months without a cheat day, and I have one more month to go. My workouts are at www.benderfitness.com which are all free. My equipment is weights, a mat and again a pair of worn shoes. Here are my silly concerns and how I am moving past them. I keep moving.a02b9032-b84b-415f-b804-150a63cc676414705636_1268334023212061_7219886695795970552_n

  1. My running shoes have seen their best day. I almost did not go to the last Richard Simmons Slimmons class out of embarrassment. I shared this in a private group, and the beautiful support that came my way through the Slimmons family taught me I am not an embarrassment. Someone even kindly offered to mail me shoes his wife has never worn. That touched me but it was not why I posted it, I just felt the need to vent. I am grateful to him and the whole Slimmons family, and as I type I am sporting my proudly worn Asics and my new Nike’s that were gifted to me. I am proud of all my steps. I am proud where these shoes have been, and where I am going.15073486_10154639242963617_6508711910709230700_n15078580_10154628087623617_8586468506395100455_n
  2. Instagram is filled with photos of people posting work out gear. I love nice work out clothes too, so I love liking the photos. I cannot do that now, and that is OK. I will find other ways to share my journey. So I am at my lowest weight on my blog and I am not clothes shopping. It will come soon enough, perhaps when I hit my ultimate weight loss goal. For now I keep keeping on and staring as trees as I run in my worn shoes. This gives me something to work for and something to look forward to. Perhaps a fun photo shoot when I finally reach that elusive weight loss goal of 135 lbs. The new clothes can wait, I am refocusing on the work. It is all about the hard work, the health and the wellness. And of course the connections with people.12592393_10153807006948617_2827822076568560780_n
  3. Races. I have done a few and I wish to do more. They are not cheap.  I  hope to run in a race in the new year. In the meantime, I will maybe do a virtual race and ask my followers to run along with me virtually. In 2015 I ran across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco and that was such a high on national 4/20 day. I can find another place to do a run here in LA, some place that really is special. As long as I keep running in my worn shoes I will reach my dream destination. I am a work in progress.unnamed-15
  4. Recipes and Food. Lately I have fallen off the wagon with cooking and shopping for groceries. We are keeping our diet simple, and I eat a lot of my meals at work. I tend to rely on the same fast and healthy options. It does not leave me much time or money to make elaborate recipes and that is OK. We have food, we eat healthy, we are grateful. Tonight I am off and trying a couple of healthier autumn treats. I am going to bake apples and make a baked sweet potato with just a few pecans, marshmallows and banana. I will post these budget friendly recipes. I can do one or two new recipes a week. I love shopping at thrift stores and finding treasures on a dime. This is my vintage Cuisinart food processor that I made black bean brownies with. 13731689_1191796280865836_7205266471736481432_n
  5. My Blanket Drive. I wanted to hold a boot camp to raise blankets for the Midnight Mission in LA for the Homeless. This is my next charity. I ended up sick and I have an injured rotator cuff so this felt like a failure to me. The game may have changed, but the prize is still the same. I am collecting blankets for the homeless and I will continue to do so from now until I deliver them to The Midnight Mission in December. It is getting Cold here in LA and the blankets are needed. Here are my thoughts on blankets for the homeless.http://mychangeforaten.com/1750-2/ I am getting to my goals despite the issues and nuances of life. My best friend Melissa Bender called me Mulan today. I am a warrior fighting my metaphorical huns. Much love and light, I am thankful for you. Happy Thanksgiving to all. Remember to treat your body like a temple but still enjoy life. It is the holiday so it is totally acceptable to indulge and share delicious fare with family and friends. Try to watch your portions and maybe get out for a walk or run. xocirque11