Category Archives: smartpoints

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 WEDNESDAY


Today is Weigh In Wednesday and I’m happy to report I lost 1 lb this week. That brings me to 167 lbs. I’m starting new! From now on I’m only counting my weight loss from this second half of my weight loss journey. I’m not looking back but looking forward. Here is the stats. SW is my starting weight. CW is my current weight. GW is my goal weight

SW 173

CW 167

GW 135

What am I doing different this time? I am counting every bite and point on my weight watchers app. I’m sticking to the same weigh in day always. I’m making healthy choices but with a bit of wiggle room and counting every thing always even if I go way overboard. I snack it, I track it. I bite it, I write it, I devour it, I empower me. Lying to myself is not empowering. Being accountable is. I got this. I’m also looking for a local charity here near my new home. Moving and sticking to your goals is not easy but I’m finding my new path.

I am not a before, I am not an after. I am a now. Now is the time and living in the present will keep me moving forward in my goals. Give up? Hell no!!

How are you making changes in your weight loss journey? Have you had ups and downs? We can do this.  Let’s do it together. I’m your biggest cheerleader.

 

 

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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WEIGH IN DAY

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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.

Rose

 

LOW SODIUM FOOD SWAPS

Do you worry about high blood pressure but you are unsure how to lower your sodium intake? Last week in the emergency room my blood pressure was alarmingly high. For me health comes first so I try to aim for a clean diet with minimal processed foods. I follow the 80/20 rule. I eat clean 80% of the time, and allow little portion controlled treats.

I make small swaps to insure I am not eating too much sodium. I always choose the swap instead of the higher sodium choice. I sometimes fall off the wagon and buy store bought bottled dressings when they are on sale, or I may use soy sauce occasionally; but I get right back to my low sodium way of life. The less processed you eat, the less likely you will eat too much sodium. I always notice a difference in the appearance of my skin when I consume too much sodium. Try these swaps and as always drink a lot of fresh water. I buy a lot of these items at Trader Joe’s. The prices are good and they tend to have all the no sodium products I prefer. This way of eating is good for my short term and long term health, but it just makes me feel good. I think you will feel the same and that is where the motivation to eat clean and healthy comes from.  

Here are some of my main low sodium food swaps

Swap salted peanut butter for unsalted peanut butter.

Swap Canned Beans, vegetables and tomatoes for dried, fresh, or no salt varieties.

Swap salad dressing and make your own with lemon, olive oil and vinegar.

Swap regular canned tuna for unsalted canned tuna.

Swap cottage cheese for Greek yogurt

Swap regular bread of sprouted Ezekiel bread

Swap instant oatmeal and cereals for old fashioned oats

Swap store bought marinades for citrus juices and vinegar

Swap cold cuts for fresh meats, fish and eggs.

Swap table salt for fresh herbs, spices and garlic

Swap high sodium vegetable broth for Trader Joe’s Vegetable broth

Swap feta cheese for goat cheese or Swiss cheese.

Swap potato chips for Trader Joe’s roasted plantain chips

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Love and Light

Namaste’

Rose 

 

 

WEIGH IN MONDAY

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Happy Monday to all. Today is Weigh in Monday and I decided to skip my weigh in, and weight til next Monday. Notice the spelling of wait? I need to step away from the scale, scale back from the stress of the numbers. I had a really rough week, and there are some extra stresses at the moment in my life, and I am no stranger to chaos, stress and change. How I will handle these changes will be determined in the weeks to come, but today I am breathing and just taking one moment at a time. That is all you can do anyway.

Last week I went to the ER, fell and injured my knee days later, and had a personal crisis put upon my plate. I did not track my food, I really just lost interest in logging, but I caught myself and today I begin anew, and next week I will jump back on the scale with renewed vigor no matter what the outcome is. One of the keys to losing weight is staying consistent even when life throws you lemons. Take those lemons, make lemon bars and share with others. Kindness to others always makes you feel better when you are down.

I also had a lot of positives happen this week too. I got my hair done and I am so happy with it.

My next story I pitched for Mt Lebanon Magazine was accepted. Here is the link to the first essay they published about me and Melissa from Melissa Bender Fitness. (http://lebomag.com/a-newfound-friendship/) I sent off more submissions to other magazines and websites in regards to my writing, my poetry, and my weight loss story. My book Camellia in Snow, here is the link,  (https://www.amazon.com/Camellia-Snow-Rose-Bruno-Bailey/dp/1515347141/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8 )  will be at Books Soup and Vroman’s in May.

Every day is an opportunity for success, even if the success is just a tiny glimpse of success that is to come. Keep dreaming no matter what is going on around you.

Now I wait and look for more places to write for and to submit. If I fall and tumble, I will pick myself off, dust my ego and keep moving forward no matter how slow. When I am down I will write, and when I am up I will run. No matter what life throws at me, I will channel it into something positive. I don’t know where I am going, but I know I am a go getter.

Namaste’ 

Love and Light

Rose

 

NOT A NUMBER

 

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What is a number? Are we defined by numbers? Think about it, how many times a day does someone ask for your bank number, your credit number, your age, weight and phone number? Do we have names or numbers? I admit sometimes I wonder if people think differently about me after I share with them my age number. I admit to being so excited about my weight loss and the fact I finally weigh in the 150’s. Does that mean I am different than what I once was? There is a fine line between past and present, here and then. At the end I choose to be Rose. Not better but not worse, just the same me who is just so grateful to see yet another day. I’m just getting stronger and healthier. I will never lose sight of any of my dreams and goals just because society has deemed me a number. Names not numbers.

Rose Bruno Bailey

 

Happy Monday to all. Monday is my Saturday, since I am off Mondays and Tuesdays. It is also my weigh in day, and the day I allow a little wiggle room into my healthy eating plan after I jump on the scale. Today my treat of choice is Russian Chocolate Coffee Cake from Canter’s Deli in Los Angeles. They bake everything homemade and the Russian Chocolate Coffee Cake is my favorite. Of course with some delicious cinnamon coffee from Dunkin Donuts my day is dusted with sugar and spice and everything that is nice about the simpler moments of life. A little quiet time to enjoy my treat, and retreat into the cavern of my mind and do a little writing. Even the most extroverted person needs a bit of solace found in silence.

Weigh in day, my updates have been the same for over a month. It seems my body has decided 159 feels good, 159 feels strong. My body is telling me to get off the scale and focus on fitness; work on your running, flexibility and yoga practice and I will get back to you when I am good and ready. That is the message I am getting from my body after one month of stepping on a scale that is not cooperating. I have finally deciphered the translation in the numbers, get off the scale and get moving.  YOU ARE NOT THIS NUMBER. 

Message heard loud and clear. I am not a number. I am still going to pay attention to the scale, because even in maintaining weight loss it is good to know where you stand; just don’t stand on the scale more than once a week. Jump on, mentally record where you are and get moving. This week I am back to focusing on my fitness now that my toe is on the mend. I have also found a way to do my Yoga Sun Salutations without injuring my rotator cuff any further, and I will post about it in a few weeks. 

I love life, and that means loving the body I am in. I am not chasing a new body, but a body that is stronger and healthier to allow me to achieve all of the goals I set for myself and to keep living my best life.

I have come a long way from where I was in 2013 and I am grateful, and I will continue on this journey; losing weight without getting to caught up on the numbers on the scale. The numbers are there to guide me, but not to define me.

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Love and Light and Happy Monday,

Rose 17308904_1436309309747864_4383739146682615547_n

TRANSFORMATION TUESDAY

Good morning to all. Happy Transformation Tuesday. Yesterday was my weigh in day, and I stayed the same holding steady at 159 lbs. Being at this weight gives me a little anxiety. You may ask why being the lowest weight since I began my weight loss would cause anxiety. This is the reason: I know that weight can go up and down, even during a weight loss journey. I stayed the same for two weeks, and I lost 9 lbs since the middle of January. I know there will be a time when I do everything right and the scale will stay the same or tip back up. I just do not want it to go up when I am in the high 150’s. This may seem silly, but I am so proud to make it to the 150’s, and I want to stay here for some time. Since I broke my plateau in January 2017  I lost 10% of my body weight. That is a win to me.

This photo was me in 2013, well above 210. This is me today at 159 lbs and so proud.17190854_1425955677449894_8538028883844596331_n

This begins a brand new week. I am really loving Weight Watchers Online and having the app on my phone. It is freedom and totally liberating to me. I eat healthy and have done so since 2013, but the little bit of wiggle room I have now makes this feel more like a lifestyle than deprivation. If you remember I went six months without a cheat day, and that drove me crazy, and I didn’t lose a pound in those six months. Balance, I am finding my balance. Yesterday I had a inspirational brunch with a friend Emily at Mel’s Drive in West Hollywood. Eating out doesn’t have to be impossible. We split our entree and made healthy choices. The omelette was egg whites with veggies, cooked dry with no cheese. I had a few of the grilled potatoes. It was all about the coffee and conversation. Balance is key to life, and enjoying yourself makes it worth living.

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Speaking of balance, I am working on my fitness, my yoga and my running. I am also a bit of a klutz and I bruised my toe. I do not know how, but I have injured two toes in the last few years, and bruised one toe I previously injured. I did not trip on my own feet, it was choreography. They say dancers and former dancers tend to be klutzy, and I am here to say that is a true fact for me. Today I feel so much better, so I will get out for a walk and perhaps a run. I do really need proper running shoes. I have learned that shoes make all the difference. I prefer Saucony. Do you have a favorite running shoe?

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I am learning that weight loss and fitness is not linear. It is up and down, and back up again. There will be times when your body tells you slow down, and times when you kick it up a notch. The key is to listen to your body. Don’t let setbacks stop you, take a rest than keep moving forward. It is Transformation Tuesday and for me transformation would be impossible without the day in, day out daily hustle to get to my goals. Have fun while you are out killing it.

Lee Strasberg once said, It’s about the work. 

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MAKE IT COUNT MONDAY

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“Don’t give up! It’s not over. The universe is balanced. Every set-back bears with it the seeds of a come-back.”
Steve Maraboli

Good Day to all, it is  Weigh In Monday and I am off for two days. I love to use my days off to catch up on my writing and my plans. I am always redesigning my life, even when set backs happen. I continue to forge forward always, and I never give up. I love this quote above, it truly speaks to me.

I think I am going to call Weigh in Day “MAKE IT COUNT MONDAY.” It has a special kind of hopeful ring to it.

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This week the scale did not budge, but I expected that. I stayed at 159 lbs. I know the scale can sometimes be that fickle friend, one day it shows you love and the next day it stands you up. There you are, standing on the scale with all the hopes of the hard work you put in the previous week, and then nothing. Not one bit of movement, no matter how many times you step on the darn contraption. 

Weighing in should not cause that much drama, do not view the scale as a frenemy; someone you love to hate. Instead embrace the process, weight loss is just like life; you will have your ups and downs. Each week is a brand new chance to reinvent your approach. This week I did not feel well, I felt a bladder infection coming on and I drank all my extra points in cranberry juice. I knew the extra calories of all that juice could alter my outcome on the scale, but my body needed healing. I recently discovered cranberry pills, highly recommended by friends and I am now on the mend. Remember, this is all for your health and wellness. I am completely fine with the scale staying the same this week.

I am embracing the process of the journey. I am going to work harder on my fitness this week, and keep my food clean and keep my points on point. Monday is my splurge day, but I will not go overboard. Splurging within my point range.I will make an effort to get at least 6-8 fruits and vegetables a day. Maybe I should begin making smoothies with veggies again. I will stay motivated and put in the work, it is all about the work.

My workout schedule for this week:

The 3 W’s. Four days a week on my work days after work, I will do my workouts by #benderfitness. I am tailoring them to the fact I have a shoulder injury, and I will also be doing exercises for my shoulder to help myself heal. I will complete two walks a day on my work days. This is all easy to remember, if I work, I workout and walk. The 3 W’s, walk, workout on work days.  http://www.benderfitness.com

Three days a week I will run, I will work up to 3 miles each day. I will also do home yoga and flexibility training 3 days a week. Again, 3 days off equals 3 miles. No way I can forget this plan. Here is my yoga, flexibility and running plans.

http://www.benderfitness.com/2015/05/5k-training-for-new-runners.html

http://www.benderfitness.com/2016/10/daily-yoga-challenge-10-sun-salutations.html

http://www.benderfitness.com/category/flexibility-training

I will work on sleeping better, and not stressing even though life can sometimes throw a pie in your face, and trust me I have dodged a lot of pies lately. Willpower, a good attitude and a smile works wonders; and perhaps just a taste of the pie. 

I am off for now. Namaste’ Love and Light.

Happy Monday,

Make it Count

Rose