Monday, August 31, 2009

Back to Business

Alrighty. I am back from my friend extravaganza long weekend in NYC. There was fun. There were friends. There were temptations. Definitely more calories than normal were consumed this weekend, but I kept myself in relative check (and I was so happy to spend time with some lovely ladies). Will my weekend be a detriment to measuring day on Thursday? We shall see soon! The joke of the weekend in regards to my attempts at behaving with food was that I would say, "I can't eat that, I'm trying to get into a biki...(Hulk voice)FUNNEL CAKE!!!" That's probably much funnier in person.

Now for a tale from last week:
For Tuesday's workout I opted for a full hour of Jillian Michaels. I did her Trouble Zones workout On Demand. I swore a lot. It's a toughie y'all, but you definitely work out every part of your bod. One of the moves is even called The Surrender..but try as she Jillian did to wear me down, I prevailed....because of YOU! At one point I was sweating and out of breath and cursing the day Jillian was born and I checked to see if I was almost done. Surely I had been at this for almost an hour. I WAS ONLY HALF WAY THROUGH! Ugh. I wanted to give up so bad and do some other workout I knew was easier, but I thought about my blog and I thought about all of you, and I thought about my goals, I knew I had to keep going. So thank you all for being out there keeping me accountable!

This week I am going to focus on abs and legs. I feel like my lower doughiness is toughest to tone! I already got back on the work out wagon and exercised this afternoon after I got home. Score!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Into the Woods

I’ve recently spent a lovely weekend in the woods. Friday afternoon the fella’ and I headed toward central Illinois to commune with nature. We stayed at a former Boy Scout camp that was purchased in the 80s and renovated into rentable cabins (with jucuzzis-woo hoo). So charming and quaint. Despite the road trip, I still managed to stay relatively on track.

Friday night whilst I read a great book on the porch, red wine in hand, with our cabin neighbors playing acoustic guitar and singing in the background, my husband cooked salmon on cedar planks over the outdoor grill. Dreamy setting, healthy meal!

Saturday we did some horse back riding in the perfect weather!
Then we got some exercise to say the least! Hiking for three hours in Matthiessen State Park! We were up and down the 45 feet deep dells all afternoon. Talk about a work out!!

I know for sure that if I hadn’t been on a work out regimen I wouldn’t have been able to handle climbing up and down the steep steps as well and for that long (at least not without aching terribly the next day). Heck, I wouldn’t have been able to mount my horse (sweet Dusty) from the ground with such ease if I hadn’t been visiting the elliptical so much. The only other time I have ridden (other than at the fair in a circle as a child) was last November and we mounted from a wooden dock. I was a little nervous to mount from the ground, but had no problems hoisting myself up. I was proud. I also really really love riding. The whole day was such a tribute to my fitness journey and a great test of my new stamina. I tend to be tough on myself in the credit department, but the physical challenges of the weekend put it all into perspective. I'm making my way y'all!

Yes there are waterfalls in the mid west-who knew?
This week is a hectic week. I had a class on Monday (I take voice lessons-sharpening up the ol’ actor tool box), and am gearing up to take another trip on Thursday night after work for a girlfriend extravaganza weekend in NYC. So I am quickly washing clothes and taking care of errands I didn’t get to run over the weekend while trying to throw in exercising. So my goal for this week is to not let busy get in the way!

Meaurement Day is upon me in a week. Hopefully that will keep me in check over the coming weekend!

Visit Matthiessen State Park

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Something Fishy This Way Comes

Have you ever taken fish oil supplements? They seem to be all the rage and carry a multitude of benefits.


If you must know, and I think you must in the spirit of candor, I began looking into fish oil supplements as a last resort effort to an ongoing dilemma….stress related scalp issues. Charming. I’ve always had to be mindful of my scalp drying out, but this spring, it became an actual problem. I’ve been to the dermatologist several times and have tried fancy expensive prescription foam and a prescription oily syrup-like treatment (that is very difficult to get out of my hair). I’ve tried tea tree oil shampoo. I’ve tried actual tea tree oil. I’ve tried rubbing pure vitamin E on my head. I’ve tried my old go-tos like Matrix Actrol Shampoo, and even Selson Blue. I’ve tried excessive water consumption. I’ve been net-searching and all signs point to stress related eczema. I know my little dog child starts flaking when we go on car trips (he worries-he’s a rescue pup with a sad past), but it makes a girl feel not-so-lady-like to share traits with a dog. Mind you I could be wrong and this could also be a hormonal change (supposedly we regenerate our cells approximately every seven years-it’s not a 100% proven theory, and what is relatively provable seems to suggest a wider span such as cell life ranging between 7 and 10 years, but I digress.) It could be stress, it could be hormones, it is most definitely embarrassing.

One cure that seems to pop up a lot (other than dousing my head in apple cider vinegar) is taking fish oil supplements. Omega 3 fatty acids from our fishy friends Salmon, Mackerel, Sardines, and the like contain powerful goodness that is supposed to be helpful for aiding in joint pain, promoting weight loss, increasing concentration, combating depression, reducing stress, and of course soothing eczema.

Of course the web is full of info about fish oil supplements and it’s hard to gage what’s accurate and what’s not. Many sites seem to be upfront with the fact that it could take three months for results (which is tough for an impatient girl like me to hear), but that it can be very effective to help with the flaky, red, itchy, mortification that is living with an eczema head.


Weight loss, you say?! Tell me more. And I shall. According to , Professor Peter Howe at the University of South Australia concludes that a combination of taking fish oil supplements while maintaining an exercise regimen is the key to using fish oil for weight loss. You can read the article: here. It seems that fish oil consumption alone will most likely not result in weight loss, but when paired with exercise it can up the effect for better belly fat reduction. Who doesn't enjoy belly fat reduction?

So, with so many possible benefits why not give it a healthy try? I remember reading a magazine article a while ago that promoted fish oil, and it warned of fish burps as result of taking these supplements. Fish burps?! That sounds undeniably disgusting as well as a recipe for feeling even more self conscious. However, questioning my pals who have tried them, I am receiving no reports of these alleged fish burps. I did read somewhere that your supplement should list the specific fish that make up the oil and if it doesn’t its legitimacy could be uncertain. I have also gotten the advice to keep the supplements cold to avoid rancid pills which could cause fish burps.

Fish Burp. This would be a great name for a rock band.

In the end I chose a once-a-day supplement with mackerel, anchovies and sardines. There were indeed bottles that didn’t specify the fish of origin so I steered clear. Taking multiple pills a day doesn’t work for me, because I inevitably forget, so I was glad to find a once daily dose version. You take the supplement with food, and I took my first one last night at dinner. I am happy to report that I have experienced no fish burps today. Excellent. What is more excellent is that, to my surprise, my supplement of choice was on sale. Huzzah! Behold, Nature's Bounty Triple Strength.


Here are a few of the places I hit up in my quest for info if you’re interested, but frankly, most sites out there seem to say the exact same thing:

Sunday, August 16, 2009


I feel like I have hit a plateau. Not necessarily a progress plateau, because my measurements prove that I am shrinking, but more of a mental plateau. I have routinely exercised an average of three times a week and continue to follow a balanced Naturally Thin way of eating, but I am feeling a little bored. I've made efforts to combat this by adding variety to my work outs by introducing strength training and varying my cardio, but the repetiveness of work-dinner-exercise-sleep-repeat is getting to me. I also cannot seem to break up with my scale. It's like an abusive relationship-I keep going to it hoping that this time it will be different, but it is always the same cruel unchanging scale. I have to admit that it's hard to let go of the vanity of seeing my weight go down. I must remind myself constantly that it's just not the time for that, and weight loss will come when it's supposed to. The real time to worry will be when my measurements stop changing. Easier said than done!

Over the past couple of weeks I've had some extra edible and drinkable indulgences and I feel myself falling into some old bad habits, so this week I am going to keep an eye out for those extra calories that I don't need and really asking myself if I need them. Plus I want to make sure to get in four days of exercising.

Here's to you week 16!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

What Anchors You?

Do you sometimes find yourself surprised at how upset a situation makes you? As in, holy cow I didn’t realize how impassioned I was about this or how important this was to me until now?

That happened to me today. Due to last minute fires to put out at my day job I missed the opportunity to attend an amazing free monthly guided meditation at a spa near my office. I had to take a walk because I was so disappointed I actually felt as though I would cry. I realized just how important these guided meditations are to me…and this would have only been my third one to attend. These guided meditations are led by an amazing lady, Susan Lipshutz, who has experience in western medicine as well spiritual study. It is not religiously based, but rather offers an opportunity to sit for a while in the middle of the hectic day and center yourself. You can remain fully alert (with closed eyes) while she guides you through a meditation but are welcome to tune out and let your mind drift or even fall asleep if that's where the time leads you. Each meditation is focused on something different such as shedding stresses or behaviors that do not serve you (like snakes shed the skin they have outgrown). In the two times I've attended I have had some significant self discoveries.

The main reason I wanted to write about this here is because since this disappointment has many emotional connections, I find myself really wanting to turn to food for comfort. While I know from an excessive amount of experience that I will not gain enlightening personal insight by hunting down the doughiest chocolatey brownie of all time and double fisting it with the cheesiest salty chips of all time, I still madly desired both of those things (and no, it is in fact NOT a certain time of the month). I am proud that I chose a short walk to get some refreshing iced tea as a healer instead of gorging on treats (although I must admit-I've felt shakey about it all day and still kind of want that chocolate brownie topped with Doritos at this moment!!)

However, I think it’s really important for me to note how missing this session today has made me feel as well as celebrate that I have found something that brings me joy and benefits my body and soul. A friend brought up a very good point. To terribly paraphrase her sage advice, if I incorporate more pillars like this into my life then I won’t be quite so shaken when one of them crumbles.

What surprising anchor has grounded you?

Saturday, August 8, 2009

A Brief Saturday Post of Gratitude

I have in fact not fallen off the face of the planet. I've been moving along well this week and really focusing on strength exercises mostly in the form of pilates. I've been doing longer workouts and am noticing that my endurance is up and my jiggling is down. My husband has been on his own fitness journey-he's a bicycle man-and it's been fun to shape up as a couple.

It means so much to me to have the good citizens of Cyberland reading my blog and giving me motivation and encouragement. It's so inspiring, touching and uplifting.

So, I would like to thank all of you Motivating Followers personally. (...and please forgive me if I have inadvertantly left someone out!!!)

Thank you: Charisse, Em, Ellie, ncsuz, LBDDiaries, Andrew Green, V2V, DKBTLT, Eileen, Geezees Geezees Custom Canvas Art, Michelle, Margie, juliasoames, Ashely, Michelle B., Sandi, Jenna, Runner Mom, blittle, SwtBlonD05, Ruth Lee, Jenny, Chandresh Khandelwal, N2Loping, apt 23, mystical flames, Rachel Bloom, Jenni-fleur, allison berry, Mary Johnston, Michelle, Maria Warner, Nina's Thinking, RobinsDaily, rosebud, Pamela's Pink Pencil, Katie, Erica, Dana, Jennifer, Alycia De avila, nicole, Miche and dad, Melissa, Erin @ Bride Design, 3foldutopiandream, Kisha, Amber, Miss Mojito, Asil Designs, marshama43, alishaneva, Kat, Leslie Velazquez, Kristen, P.A., Communication Homicide, Mrs. Shaw, TinaMarie, Kate Murphy, Sara Russell, Peanut Petunia, Guru LaRue, Kendra Selin, Mandy Corrado-Gutwaks, Broke-ass Bride, Lorri, Michelle, Sandra Linerode, Mandie, carrie durante, Katie, Aehampto, babysara04, Victoria Tillson, Stacey, Jaime, Kat Papp, lisa dipietro, Monique Delgado, hermindwhispers, Christy Hemken, Katie Detwiler, Morgan Gunning, Avedabrunette, BFUF2.5wjc3KsoTe9IP, Dame
Lindsey, shannonsanderson

Thank you for your support!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Measurements Part Tres!

Here we are, the third day of the month, Measurement Day. Let's get to it!

May 3rd Waist (at belly button): 33.5 inches
June 3rd Waist (at belly button): 33 inches
July 3rd Waist (at belly button): 32.5 inches
August 3rd Waist (at belly button): 31.75 inches
Down 3/4 an inch! Down 1.75 inches total!

May 3rd Hips: 39 inches
June 3rd Hips: 38 inches
July 3rd Hips: 38 inches
August 3rd Hips: 37.5
Down 1/2 inch. Down 1.5 inches total!

May 3rd Arm: 11.75 inches around
June 3rd Arm: 11.5 inches around
July 3rd Arm: 11.25 inches around
August 3rd Arm: 11 inches around
Down 1/4 inch! Down 3/4 inch total!

May 3rd Thigh: 23 inches around
June 3rd Thigh: 22.75 inches around
July 3rd Thigh: 22.5 inches around
August 3rd Thigh: 22 inches around
Down 1/2 inch! Down 1 inch total!

Slowly but surely gang! Maybe my scale isn't moving, and maybe I didn't have a stellar exercise week last week (I didn't get in the lengthier workouts I was aiming for, just a couple of shorties), but the measurements don't lie! What a great way to start the day!

This week my goal is to add variety to my workouts. As we know I am doing lots of cardio, but have only just started adding in some strengthening with ab work. I want to try to incorporate a variety of exercises this week and focus on strengthening.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Becoming A New Person


An issue touched on in Ruby this week was the idea of letting you former self go and becoming a new fit person. It struck a chord with me. No matter what size, if you've never been truly slim and healthy or you've been off the fit wagon a while, there is definitely an element of fear that comes with the change. It seems like a silly notion at first-why fear something that will make you feel so good and benefit your health and boost your self esteem? However, it's really easy to fear this change. Being overweight becomes such a strong part of one's identity (even if it's not for the better), and it is not easy to let it go. Who am I if I am not chubby? For me I think a big factor is that I sometimes use it as a crutch ie: Telling myself that I would have gotten roles if I were thinner, landed a commercial audition if I were thinner, my performance career as a whole would be in a better place if I were in better shape. While in some cases this may be a legitimate reason (part of the business IS based on look), but I realize that sometimes I hide behind it and give it more responsibility than it should have. I don't think it necessarily occurred to me to consider the identity aspect of it all. When the first leg of my get-fit journey is complete in a year, I will be a different person in some ways. It's exciting and scary at the same time, but mostly I can't wait to meet the new version me! I'm already feeling the transformation.

Tomorrow is a measurement day! Time to see where the three month mark has taken me!