Saturday, April 9, 2011

Monthly Project

Over at the Sisterhood they have a monthly project. Obviously it is something that changes every month and honestly I usually don't get too involved in it. But this month I was super excited about it. The project this month is to grow something. A herb or a veggie, inside or out. Just to try to grow something, and then use it in your cooking. With Spring in the air I thought this would be a perfect time to jump on board and grow something, well to try to grow something. I love, love, love to cook and to can, so I thought growing some herbs that I use in both would be great. One it is something that K and I can do together and also it is wonderful to grow something I would normally have to buy and it would save me money in the long run. I actually started my plants before I even knew about the monthly project but I thought I would join in and show everyone how green my thumb is. (Actually is it dark brown, lol)
I decided to try and grow some chives, dill, basil and peppers. I am having a little trouble. I am not sure if it is the light I have them in, the soil, the seeds or how much I water them, but they are not growing as well as I had been hoping for. I wanted to start them inside because in my neck of Michigan it is still pretty cold outside. I do plan on transplanting them outside when the risk of frost has pasted, but for now they sit in a sunny spot in my dining room and on nice afternoons I am putting them outside to soak in the direct sun and fresh air. Today it is beautiful out and I have them on the back porch. I am hoping it helps to perk them up a bit. The peppers and chives are doing the best. The dill started out great and now has kinda died off. I started the basil last week so it is still too early to tell how it will do. Once I can plant outside I want to start some green onions and cucumbers. I can't wait for Spring to finally get here and move into summer so that I can watch them all take off. Have you gotten into the project? How does your garden grow?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Shreding It

I started the 30 day shred (again) last week. I am on my fifth day in a row now and I am still really liking it. I think I like most that it is only 20ish minutes from start to finish and it fits into my busy life really well that way. I'm just wondering if it is doing as much good doing it everyday or if I should be giving my muscles a break once in awhile? I have combined it with a walking routine every other day or so, just to add to the work out. I am trying to lose 10 pounds by my anniversary in mid-May. That will have me about half way to my goal weight. So I am very concerned with doing what it takes to get the best results. I am eating much better and logging all my food and workouts at I know that writting down what I eat is a huge help. I like to look up my options before I make a decision and seeing how many calories something is often helps me to make better choices. For years I have been "dieting" to help control my weight. I feel like I have literally tried everything, Weight Watchers, adkins, you name it, I tried it. I had a few years where I was really successful and was at my lowest weight ever and stayed there for about 2 years and then it slowly started to climb. I kept an eye on it, and thought ok, time to stop this, but I just couldn't get back on track. Finally after 2 years of struggling I am starting to see some results. Some changes in my lifestyle that I can live with. I am just afraid of burn out. Of getting so close to the end result and then relaxing too much. I guess I need to not worry so much (easier said than done) and just move slowly and keep working at it. I am trying to see the end goal by meeting small goals along the way. 10 pounds at a time. Eventually everything will click together.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Just Checking In

It is weigh in/check in Wednesday over at the Sisterhood and although I have been absent for awhile I think a check in is in order.
I took some time off, mostly due to laziness, from eating right and working out. I came back from a little R&R in Vegas and hopped back on board.
For the past 4 weeks I have been watching what I eat and working out. I started back kinda slow, mostly just watching my food intake, then I slowly progressed to working out. I started taking a walk everyday, then I added miles and toning. I am now either shredding or walking or both most days of the week. I try to get at least a mile in everyday and most days I get well more than that in. I used to have this horrible anxiety about putting on my 30 day shred video, I knew it was going to hurt. But now, I am excited to turn it on because although I know it is still going to hurt, I know that it is working. I am seeing results. I can wear clothes I had long since stopped wearing, I can see that number on the scale going in the right direction. I feel strong and confident. I feel like my goals are achievable. It is a really nice feeling. I feel empowered and energized.
I have a plan and I am sticking with it. I am making better choices for myself and in turn my family. I am eating more veggies and drinking more water. There are certain foods that no longer come into our home. We don't have pop, diet or otherwise, in our house. No chips, no junk food. We are finding healthier options. I have cut out all sweets from my diet, no more french fries and no pop. It is now easier to pack a lunch than to go out because I am cooking better meals. I have leftovers of healtier options than anything I can get at a restaurant. I am counting calories in and calories burned. I am getting healthy and sleeping better. I have a lunch date today with my mom and although I am super excited to see her, I was bummed this morning that I couldn't bring my leftovers in for lunch! That is a huge switch, I used to love to eat out, now I am thinking of how long and hard I will need to work out to burn off the extra calories.
The changes that I have started are truly amazing. I love where I see things heading. I see a healthier lifestyle for me and my family. I am looking at the long term payoffs instead of the instant successes. I am looking forward to where I will be in one month and then six months instead of what can I lose this week. It is a change in attitude and I feel like it is the change I needed to be successful.
For Easter I am getting K a new bike. The kid has outgrown the last one, he is 8 years old and 4 foot 9 inches! And I am thinking that maybe the Easter bunny will bring me a new bike too. Mine is old (like 30 years old) and I would love to have something a little sleeker to ride around on. I think that would be a great reward for all the hard work I am putting in, don't you? Now I just need to convince Gary!
How did you do this week?

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

True Confession Tuesday

True Confessions It has been a really long time since I have made any confessions. I have been on a little hiatus, which I have returned from with a venengence. I have taken my health and my life into my own hands. Lately I have put my needs and wants on the back burner. I had so much going on in my life that eating right and working out just weren't happening. I was so tired when I got home that I didn't een make an effort. But now I am trying to take stock of my needs and wants and putting those things higher up on the priority list. So here are the things I have discovered about myself and how I am trying to overcome them. Confessions: 1) I am a plate cleaner. For as long as I can remember I have eaten everything on my plate whether I was still hungry or not. Plan for overcoming: Putting less on my plate in the first place. As I work on stopping eating when I am not hungry I am not putting as much on my plate, so the temptation to overeat is lessened. I know that I need to read my bodies signals on when to stop, but until I get a good handle on that, having to think before I take another serving will help. 2) I am really tired after work and don't want to work out. Plan for overcoming: Do it anyway. I am pushing myself to work out even when I am tired and don't want to. I am trying to push myself to do something, even if it is just some squats or pushups. I have found that once I get started doing more of a work out is easier and I want to do it. I am really trying to give myself realitic goals that I can achieve and that will help me to make the next goal. It is a process. Steps that need to be made before you can take the next step. But I am learning to walk.

Monday, April 4, 2011


I am in need of some advice. I have been working out pretty regularly for the past several weeks. Mostly I have been doing a lot of walking, 3 miles everyday followed by a lower body toning video. Last week I switched things up a little due to time constraints and I did the 30 day shred. So my question is this, do you think that the hard work out for a shorter time is more or less beneficial than the longer workout at a more moderate pace? I want to do what ever will be better in the long run. I really enjoy the long walk with the legs, but I don't always have an hour to dedicate to working out in a day. The 30 day shred kicks my butt, but then I feel like I wimped out because it only takes 20 minutes. Is one better than the other? Should I continue to do a combination of the 2?
I have been working really hard on eating less and making better food choices. This is not an easy task considering I am feeding my entire family which is made up of two very picky eaters, so having better meals is not always welcome. Not that I allow my family to eat total crap, but there are days when nothing but comfort food will make them happy. I try to make things with more veggies and less red meat, but like I said, some days they aren't happy until they get meat and potatoes. I don't have the time or the money to cook two separate meals, one for me and one for them. So the workouts are super important to burn off some of the excess calories. So far what I have been doing seems to be working, I have lost 10 pounds in around a month, but I don't want to switch to a shorter workout and not get the same results, and at the same time who wants to spend a ton of time working out when you can do 20 minutes?
Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated. What do you do to burn off the meatloaf and baked potatoes?

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Ready, Set......Goal

At the start of every month I like to set goals for myself. I always figure that I can stick with something or accomplish something for one month. It makes for some fun projects and helps to keep me focused on the small goals. I like to change things up every month and try something new. I am a chronic list maker, so at the begining of the month I make a list and then at the end of the month I can look back and see what I got done. April is no exception to this plan. My goals for April are some of the goals I try for every month and some new ones. I try to set a goal for different areas of my life, financial, organizational, household, and personal. For April my financial goal is a little game I love to play, every couple of months I challenge myself to a spend no money month. Obviously I have to spend money every month, but I challenge myself to not spend any unnecessary money. No eating out, no coffee on the way to work, no little splurges. Just to see how much money I can save by the end of the month. I have given myself an allowance at the begining of every week, for things like gas and any mad money, at the end of eash week I take what is left and put it away in my secret hiding place. At the end of my spend no money month I take that money and put it on a bill or something else that is useful instead of the little daily splurges. You would be surprised how much you spend and don't even realize it. I have paid an extra payment on bills or paid the cell phone or electric bill, just by not getting that coffee or even a bottle of water on the road. It is a really fun thing to do. For organization, I am working on some spring cleaning. I figure that April is a great time for this since it is actaully starting to look and feel like spring. I like to start in one room a week and clean it and organize it that week, by the end of the month my house is in good order. I still do the general cleaning, I just clean out an extra closet or cupboard each week. Mostly the seasonal cupboards, taking care of the heavy jackets and boots and replacing them with lighter jackets and our mud boots. I pack up the stuff that we didn't use this season or doesn't fit anymore and I donate it. It is a great way to organize my house and to give to charity. My personal goals are always the hardest for me to stick with. I like to set goals for how much exercise I want to get in for the month, how long I want to walk/run or how many minutes minimum I want to work out a day/week. As hard as I try to get my time in, I have a hard time because I tend to get pulled in many different directions.So part of my personal goals this month is to make time for myself. Everyday I want to take some time for myself be it for working out, reading or whatever, I need some me time. I need to set some boundaries for my family on how much of my time they can demand from me. I acually started this one last week and so far it is going pretty well, there have been a few tears from Gary when he didn't get his way, lol, but he is dealing with it pretty good. K has been great about it, he might knock on my door and ask me for somehing but once I tell him he will have to wait he is fine with it. My other personal goal is to get out and be with my friends more. I live in one town and work 30 miles away so it is really hard to do things with the people from work, mostly because they all live in a different town in the opposite direction from work. We do try to get together every couple of months, but it is hard. I do have some friends in my own town, but it has been really hard to make them. I am a transplant to this area and extremely shy, so most of the ladies that I met when I move where the wives of my husbands friends and although they were all really nice to me, we just didn't have anything in common, so it was hard to find things to do together that we would all enjoy. Since I have moved Gary and I have started making new friends together, where as a couple we can do things together and I am thrilled with the people we have met. So my goal is to really work on those friendships to call them a little more and make plans a little more. One of our new friends lives right down the road and I think it would be really nice to have a walking partner and I know she would love it too. Those are my goals for April, I will check back at the end of the month and let you all know how I did. Do you set goals for the month? If so what are they? I would love to get some new ideas for next month.