Category Archives: losing weight

Injury and Weigh in Update

It’s been a minute and a day since I’ve posted. I’m in the process of healing from an injury to my knee that’s taking much longer to heal than I expected. It’s a bit easier to walk on but it’s still pretty swollen. Today is the first day I’m going to try to do some cardio and see how I feel.

My weight has been fluctuating, I’m now 176. I was 174 a few weeks ago but I also stopped taking a diuretic I was on for years, so I’m not upset over a 2 lb gain. It’s incredibly humbling to backtrack from fitness and weight loss, but even more humbling to get hurt and have to stop all together. I never had an mri, just an ultrasound and an X-ray, so I really don’t know exactly what I did to my leg. I’m listening to my body and I’m going to go slow with cardio and see how I feel. My mind tells me if I can walk all night at work I can try to start getting fit again.

My vegan lifestyle is a lifestyle and not a diet, so that will never change. I’m eating mostly whole foods and plant based with low salt, sugar and oils. I do have an occasional boca burger without a bun on days I’m in a rush. I’m balancing my food, meal prepping and having a kale/ fruit smoothie every day; with chia, flax seeds and coconut water. Eating healthy is easy, the weight stalling has everything to do with the fact I haven’t worked out since I injured myself last November. Even though my knee is swollen I’m ready to begin again starting today. I was featured in two issues of VegWorld magazine and I’m really chasing all of my goals. I haven’t given up even when challenged. My sweet husband James said I’m beautiful but I’m stronger then people expect. He said I’m tough as nails. I don’t know about that but I try to never ever give up.

I admit the injury left me depressed, but I’m coming out of it with a positive mindset, and meditation. Controlling negative thoughts is key as is living for the present. I’m just going to get out there and move my body. I’m not going to begin with running or try to move too fast while walking. My goal is to move a little more each day, try the rower, and stretch my body. My first goal is to move to heal and get better, each day getting stronger and stronger. I have a long term goal to get in the best shape of my life, but for now I’m taking baby steps. Day one is today and my goal is to just move. I would like to try for 30/45 minutes but I’m going to listen to my body and let pain be my guide. Update tomorrow!!

Love and light and healing to all who need it.
With Gratitude,

Rose 

 

 

Life’s Curveballs

Happy Wednesday to all. How’s 2020 going for all of you. I have committed to blogging and being consistent with my goals and happiness, and I’m on it in regards to my clean eating, budget food haul and meal prep. A little curveball has come my way in the form of an injured knee. It’s swollen and has been bothering me for weeks. That photo is from 2013 when I began this blog. It was days before I was in the Richard Simmons video and I got sick. I started my blog and had to rest for a few days before resuming it full force. Similar to reinventing my blog today. I start and all of a sudden my knee is giving me a hard time. 

I took today off from work to continue to apply rice; rest, ice, compression and elevation. I’m also going to buy new work shoes for now and order better ones online. Today the swelling doesn’t seem as bad as it was. This is a curveball in my plan for sure, but life throws you curveballs. It’s how you react to them. I’m listening to my body and my mindset is positive, I will heal. I do believe eating very little salt and sodium and tons of plants will help me in the process of healing and getting rid of inflammation.  The money I saved from my food budget is going to work shoes and one bill, even though I’m losing one day of work I’m still getting somewhat ahead. I’m proud to say today is my day three transitioning to eating a whole foods plant based lifestyle. I’m vegan for the animals and environment, and wfpb for my heath. This is not saying I’m against processed food and all the delicious vegan options out there, but for me those are rare and occasional treats. I love a good splurge meal but they have to be occasional treats. It’s too easy to slip. I’m eating very low salt, sugar and oil but I’m not 100% completely free of them. When I say very low that means almost none, but I won’t worry if some slips into my food. I’m trying to be healthy and balanced.

Happiness, health, wellness/weight loss and chasing goals takes a lot of work; but it also takes perseverance when things do not go your way. Those curveballs fly in the direction of your well thought out plans and goals. It’s ok if they do, just don’t let them knock you down or crush your dreams and goals. Remember, this month will build the foundation for the year. , that’s how I’m approaching January. Don’t give up when life throws you curveballs. It’s not the first time and it won’t be the last.

For the time being I’m listening to my body and reading inspirational words while I cannot workout. I’m eating clean vegan, no salt, very little oils and sugar. Soon I will be healed and resuming my workout plans and goals. In the meantime I rest and show gratitude for my health even if my knee is temporarily injured.Today the swelling in my knee has gone down a bit, hoping I heal quickly so I can begin moving my body daily. One of the secrets to happiness for me is exercise. Have a wonderful mid week.
Love and light to all. Rose

 

How to eat vegan on a budget

Happy Monday to all. Let’s crush some goals so we worry less and spread joy more. We are happiness gurus today, not tomorrow or next week. For me it begins with two of my categories I need to work on, bills and my healthy vegan food budget. I’m getting healthy now, and my husband James is on board. To eat clean vegan doesn’t take a lot of cash. This week I’m doing it for $80.00.

These are two categories that are important in my life to be happy, getting on top of bills and debt and health. Beginning on Mondays I set the foundation for my week. I set my intentions for my day, and I honor those intentions. Here’s my food haul from last night. One more haul tonight and I’m done and then I decide which bills to tackle first, this plan is a proactive plan. To be happy you need to stop procrastinating, and find money somewhere to take care of issues. No more vegan junk means money to pay off things. I will reserve vegan junk for occasional splurges. Don’t get me wrong, I love vegan junk, only once in a while and definitely not daily. Eating clean vegan will help me on my path to weight loss/and vegan wellness.

If you want to eat clean on a budget I suggest you stick to fruits, vegetables frozen and fresh. I look around for deals first, and then I make my choices. I do the same with veggies and greens, and I buy a lot because this is the bulk of our meals. I look for seeds that may be on sale, I found chia seeds for $5.99. I buy only one bread, Ezekiel. One loaf should last a week. I have whole grain rice and a big container of oats at home, including oat flour, dark vegan chocolate chips for occasional homemade treats. At home I also have spices, nutritional yeast, and apple sauce. I have coconut oil and olive oil but we will rarely use oil. Applesauce is great for baking. We have nut butters, all natural with no salt or oil. Canned beans no salt, dry legumes like split peas and lentils. I do buy some condiments to help my hubby transition to clean vegan. Vegan mayo, vegan butter, and vegan sour cream. I will use sparingly.

Tonight at Trader Joe’s I’m finishing my haul. I will post in another blog what we are eating with this $80.00 vegan food budget. Oh, and there’s always coffee. I think it’s going to be easy to stick to this plan. After the holidays and all the salt I know eating this way will help me in three ways, losing weight, get rid of water retention from all the sodium, and save money to pay bills. It’s a win-win. Now doesn’t beginning your week this way make you happy?

One more thing, we are making a donation for Australia. I can take a little extra cash to show my support. It’s heartbreaking for all the people and animals. I can’t even look at the images, I just cry. If you can, donate a dollar or two. If we all did that imagine how much relief they can get. Part of being a happiness guru is being kind and giving. Love and light to all and prayers for our neighbors down under. Rose

WEIGH IN WEEK FIVE


Happy Monday to all. Today begins my week five and it’s also weigh in day. Today my weight is 172 lbs and I lost another 1 lb and 5 lbs total in 4 weeks. My true focus has been on consistency and balance. My fitness goals are revolved around progress not perfection. My short term goals with my workouts are to be able to do all the exercises with ease. I want to be able to hold planks and side planks longer. I once planked for over five minutes and I hope to do that again. I want to be able to do 20 pushups, first the easy versions and later the more difficult pushups. I’m focusing on fitness and clean eating and allowing my Monday’s to be my vegan splurge days. Like I said, consistency and balance.

This week I’m going to take my #benderfitness workouts up a notch with more intensity and three rounds of workouts, and if it’s warmer I’m planning on taking my cardio outdoors. I’m going to add a little running to my cardio. It’s been four weeks and my joints feel better, I already feel more flexible and I do not get winded going up stairs. I have more energy and overall I feel like my wellness is returning. On my work days I eat clean vegan food and I meal prep so I never go hungry. I have found my stride but I also understand this is only the beginning and the last four weeks were a warm up for the real work that is to come.

If you are on a fitness and weight loss journey I would love to hear from you. What inspires you to keep going and overcome obstacles and challenges to get to your goals? I love feeling healthy and ageless, so fitness and nutrition are so important for my life. Life can be messy but consistency is truly rewarding. That feels like the biggest accomplishment, the fact we keep going no matter what comes our way. Bonus points for those sharing smiles to whoever comes in our paths. Yes, it’s a challenge. Yes, we can do it.
Love and light to all. Rose 

NON SCALE VICTORIES

Happy Friday. I’m celebrating small nsv’s, that means non-scale victories. It’s week three of my #benderfitness workouts and I’m going strong and getting stronger. I’m working out 5-6 days a week, and I can see improvement in my strength. My push ups are a little bit lower, I’m holding my planks a little bit longer. My lunges are not as scary or as difficult. My flexibility is improving and my joints are no longer aching. A body in motion stays in motion, a body at rest stays at rest. Newton’s law. I’m doing these workouts for either six weeks or 12 weeks, and later I will switch it up.

To me this is the beginning of success, the little improvements and the commitment to put in the hard work day after day, despite the struggles and disappointments of life. As humans we tend to only view success in the grand accomplishments. Money, cars, awards, followers; material gains and huge accolades are often looked upon as more important than the non material and smaller wins. We tend to congratulate someone without knowing the background of the blood, sweat and tears that got them there. It takes hard work to accomplish dreams and goals, but that hard work in the beginning should never be looked upon as insignificant. When someone who’s never exercised in their life finally walks a block, that’s success to me. It’s getting the guts to get up and go, to jump hurdles and leap over anything that gets in your way; and a lot of time we are tripping over our own two feet. Our insecurities hold us back, our perception of what others think holds us back. Don’t do that.

My life right now has issues, but I’m not letting that hold me back, and I understand that’s life for all of us. There is fear, uncertainty and some sadness; but through it all I’m a survivor who loves life and is grateful for another day. So each day, no matter what’s going on I will commit to my small daily goals because that’s how I’m getting to where I’m going. Small goals one day will become big accomplishments. No one is clapping when I hold my plank 1 minute at 1 am in the morning, but I’m giving my commitment to making it happen a standing ovation. That’s all the accolades I need, the satisfaction of showing up and getting it done despite what comes my way. In one year I will look back at this moment with immense pride because I refused to give up.

Do you believe in coming back after failure? Do you believe in second and third chances to get something right after falling on your face multiples times? I find it really inspiring when someone makes a come back after failure after failure. After all failure is just a word we created, and we don’t have to let that word define us. Every brand new day is a chance to try again, and get it right. Let’s get it right, let’s work hard and show ourselves we can and will do it. Let’s define and rewrite our definition of success. Most important point to remember is to remember to make time for others when you are out in the world trying to make a name for yourself. No one is an island. Kindness and giving should always be a given in the sequence of chasing success. We all are here for one another. Let’s chase success together and rise each other up. Everyone who tries deserves thunderous applause. Show up and give yourself a standing ovation. 

Love and light,
 Rose 

 

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY WISDOM

Happy Wednesday. Above is the photo of my before and after on my first part of my weight loss blog journey 2013-2017. For anyone new reading this I started my blog to lose weight and support a new charity with each ten pounds I lost in 2013.  I reached my lowest weight of 159 lbs in May 2017 and helped many charities in Los Angeles and San Francisco. In my life really got really crazy. My Mother became ill and died May 21st, 2017. Two weeks later we moved from LA to Houston TX, and in December 2017 we lost our beloved Siamese Rascal after months of trying to save him. It was a rough year to say the least.

In 2018 we had some major life challenges and my blog really came to a halt. I would start and quit, mostly because those changes left scars on me, just like the Elton John song lyrics from the Funeral for a friend song. Those lyrics really speak to me. Sometimes changes in the form of challenges result in scars. For me those scars took on the form of excuses, and I just didn’t put in the work like I did in the past. I ended up gaining half my weight back and I was truly unhappy for the first time in a long time.

Now it’s the end of 2019 and I’ve come to the conclusion there’s always going to be challenges. Scars fade eventually and you will get new challenges with new scars, that’s life. I’ve decided to go after all of my goals, beginning here with my wellness, fitness and weight loss. I’m at it every day because when the new scars fade I won’t have to feel bad for quitting. Quitting is not in my vocabulary anymore. I was strong through my move from LA to San Francisco in 2014 and I kept going, and that’s what I’m doing now. I’m taking inspiration from my former self, with new scars motivating me to overcome new challenges.

It’s my new week three and I feel wonderful. Transitioning to night workouts is a game changer for me. There’s a peace about the gym at that time. I’m up late because I work late and my energy is high, so I’m utilizing that fact to go after my fitness goals instead of using work as an excuse. Last night I noticed my planks are getting stronger, and my balance doing warrior 3 is really improving. These are the changes that start my progress. I’m very proud of getting to where I am in my mindset, and proud I’m no longer using life’s problems as excuses. I’m doing all this as an even prouder vegan, I transitioned to veganism in 2018. It’s who I am and that I got right. I’m living my most authentic life.

You can choose happiness or misery, and I choose happiness. I’m no longer an excuse maker. I’m a goal setter and getter. I’m on the road to becoming an after, taking it one mile at a time. There are no shortcuts, nor will I veer off the road and head in a different direction. This is my journey and my positive mindset gets to decide where I’m going.

Happy Wednesday to all. Love and light, Rose 

BMI GOALS

Happy Saturday. It’s coffee time, and a moment to reflect on long term weight goals. My BMI went back up in the obese range when I gained half my weight back. So I did a chart to see what weight I need to be to transition to overweight BMI, and finally to a normal BMI number. I’m not in any hurry to get there. I’m trying to really focus on overall health, fitness, strength and flexibility; as well as building up my stamina. I understand I am not a number, but at the same time I need to have a healthy weight I’m working towards. It’s a guideline for me. My short term goal is 169 lbs and the next short term goal is 159 lbs. My ultimate goal is 141 lbs.

This week concludes my second week of consistent #benderfitness workouts, and cardio. I’m definitely feeling slightly stronger this week. I’ve noticed some improvements in the way I perform the exercises. Friday’s workout was the best so far, I was super energized and my planks were on point. I’m taking on day, one meal, one workout, and one weigh in at a time. I hope you are crushing your goals, no matter what your level is. Starting is half the battle. I’m proud that I’m continuing on despite challenges that may come my way. I’m on the road to being an after.
Happy Weekend love and light Rose

 

NOVEMBER ALREADY

Happy November, is it really November already? Today is also World Vegan Day. Let me start out this post by saying going vegan is my most proud thing I’ve done, I’m living my most authentic life. Happy World Vegan.

Are you team Thanksgiving or are you the type to fast track to Christmas? I’m a little of both, we love the whole time from October to January, it’s so festive. The weather here is a little cooler which adds to the ambience.

The Holiday season is not the easiest time to make a weight loss journey a success, but I’m going to get through it working out daily and with weight loss. Yesterday was Halloween, so I enjoyed a little treat within reason. Like I mentioned a few weeks ago when I began blogging on the regular again that I would be balanced in my approach. No more craziness and unhealthy ways to lose. That’s disordered eating and not part of my plan.

I began my day with avocado toast, topped with nuts, cherry tomatoes and Siracha sauce. In the past if I knew I was having a vegan splurge I would have skipped all meals, but not anymore. I know how important nutrition is, so no skipping for this gal.

My splurge was a lettuce and tomato sub, topped with Tofurky, vegan provolone and potato chips. I chose to drink sparkling water and I had a bit of dark chocolate. A lot of people would say that’s not a splurge, but for me it is. I’m eating cleaner whole plant based foods with minimum sodium, and the vegan turkey and cheese is high in sodium which makes it a occasional treat for me. We had a great Halloween and I don’t feel like my Journey has been derailed. I’m in this for the long haul.

My next splurge will be Thanksgiving. Tonight I work late and after work I will do my #benderfitness workout. The late night workouts are really working out for my schedule. I didn’t meal plan enough which makes my weekend a challenge but I will get through it. I realized I really love the convenience of vegan protein bars with my coffee. I’m a complete zombie when I awaken. Maybe I should make protein balls to have with my coffee. Well I’m off for the day, coffee is calling and I’m going to have quiet time before work with some kitty cuddles. Perhaps a sneak peak at the Hallmark Channel. 

Happy November, let’s crush some goals during this holiday season, and do it with gratitude.
Love and light, Rose

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY WISDOM

Happy Wednesday to all. I am here to say I have not missed a workout since I started brand new last week, and my food is on point. Last night my hubby James and I went to a movie and when we got home he decided he was taking a rest day. It was tempting to blow off one workout, but I declined and followed through with my commitment. That’s the theme of this new journey, following through with commitments.

I took before photos last week and I’m thinking about when I should take my next round of photos to chart progress. I’m thinking three months. That would be the end of January. What do you think? Do you feel three months can show progress?

Tomorrow is Halloween and I’m having a vegan cheat meal, a Tofurky sub and some potato chips. It’s my first cheat meal in two weeks, but I’m not going to call it a cheat meal any longer; it’s a splurge. I’m using my extra WW points so I’m not going off track, it’s just not completely clean vegan and that’s ok with me. I’m going to enjoy my vegan sub and chips, and have a little dark chocolate too.

I’m living life happy as I lose weight and get fit. It’s all about achieving a healthy mind, body and spirit. To get that you need balance. I will post a photo of my sub on Halloween. I’m eating fun foods and spending the day with my hubby, but I’m not skipping my Thursday workout. Back to the importance of commitments and building a solid routine, keeping that momentum going strong.

Do you love Halloween? We love the time between September and January, it really is festive. We hung orange lights and everything at home is illuminated. Yesterday our building had trick or treaters, it was so cute to leave out candy and see the smiles on the kiddies faces!!  No matter what you are going through, making others smile is definitely healing.

Off to work for the day, my food is packed for tonight I’m doing my Wednesday #benderfitness workout after I get home. No more excuses. Please give me your thoughts about the next time I should take full body photos to chart my progress. Have a wonderful Halloween Eve.
With Gratitude, Rose

MOTIVATIONAL MONDAY

Today is weigh in Monday and week two of my #benderfitness workouts. I weighed in at 176  and lost 1 lb. I’m focusing on clean eating (vegan) and also balanced eating. What does balanced eating mean? For me it’s eating a 80/20 diet or 90/20. In other words the bulk of my meals are Whole Foods plant-based, using minimal oils and lower salts and sugars, always counting my WW points. It’s my WW points that help me stay balanced when I eat something that’s more processed or a treat. I’m getting my vegan nutrition in and I don’t feel deprived. It’s truly balanced eating and I feel great after my week one. Focusing also on my workouts is important too, I’m refusing to be a slave to the scale. I lost one true pound, I didn’t cut water or skip meals yesterday like I have in the past to get a better number on the scale. I am in it to win it and not taking shortcuts to get there.

Lots to do today, so that’s it for now. It’s my day off but also the first day of my second week of Melissa Bender Fitness workouts. I started my day with a vegan Vega protein bar and one cup of delicious coffee with my Silk vegan creamer, lots of water and fruit.

I hope you are having a Happy Monday and chasing all of your goals no matter what happens. Last week felt like the lowest week we experienced in a long time but I didn’t quit. I’m committed and I’m climbing over all obstacles that come my way. Happy Motivational Monday to all. Love and Light, Rose