Friday, November 18, 2011

Drive By Posting

I was tired this evening and listening to my body I went down for a nap. Sleep is important for weigh loss right? Anyhow I was woken up by a call from my Mum. After a nice long chat I'm going back to bed, maybe I'll have something interesting to say tomorrow!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

For Me

Almost ten years ago now, I got my first tattoo and I knew not too long after that I'd want another one.  It just took me a very long time to decide what that second tattoo would be, where it would go, etc.  Earlier this summer I finally came up with an idea and where I wanted it to go. 

In the beginning of August I went to New Moon a local tattoo parlour with an amazing and international reputation.  My first tattoo was actually done by one of their former artists who has a parlor in Cornwall.  I was very happy with the quality of the art work.  I was hoping to get this new tattoo done during my summer holidays.  It turned out I couldn't get an appointment until early September!  Which in the end, I had to postpone because my Mom was ill. 

Finally, today I got my new ink!

My first tattoo was stock art, a dragon, my Chinese Astrological Symbol.  This one is a custom piece, nothing too fancy but it has meaning to me, and that's what's important.  Seeing as I've been involved in Taekwon-Do for almost 15 years now it wouldn't be too stupid to put something related on my body.  My new tattoo is above my ankle, its a black belt (as I'm a 3rd degree) with the characters for Taekwon-Do below it.

 I'm very happy with my new ink.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Crap, Crap, Crap, Crap!

Being active and watching what I ate prior to my girls stitching weekend and doing the same didn't make a difference.  I gained 1.5 lbs this week.  I'm a little surprised that it was that much.  So now my total loss sits at 1 lb.

Almost makes a girl want to give up.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Oh gosh I keep running out of things to say?  Or perhaps its the motivation to find something new to talk about, or maybe even having enough time to think up a good blog entry.  There seems to be a lack of that lately I tell you.  All of this being active and making proper meals really takes a chunk out of a girl's free time.

I didn't want to go to the gym today... but I went.

I was invited at the last minute to join some friends at a new (and supposedly very good) burger joint... but I didn't.  I stuck with my original plan and the meal I had planned.  I'm also weighing in tomorrow and a good burger could affect that.

I'm still trying, the scale will tell the truth tomorrow.

Monday, November 14, 2011

That's Better-er

Monday night, teaching night at Taekwon-Do.

Planning seems to make a huge differnece, wow!  I took a little time this afternoon and planned out my classes for tonight.  My three classes ran much more smoothly this week than last.

I know, this is a short post with really not much too it but I don't have any great ideas for today... and teaching night is always late and I'm pretty tired by the time I get a chance to put my feet up for the night.

Is there anything, you the reader would like for me to talk about or give you my take on?

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Stitching, Eat, Sleep... Repeat!

That's what this weekend was!  Oh boy!  What a fantastic time I had with my stitching friends tucked away in a lovely Country Inn.

 Showing off the ornament I received in our annual exchange

As usual I worry that these weekends will have an impact on my weight loss efforts.  I do my best to eat well and exercise leading up to one of my girl's stitching weekend.  Then leading up to dinner on Friday night I try to have a really healthy and low point breakfast and lunch.  Its once we start eating on Friday night that I feel like I struggle the whole weekend!

I must admit that this year, the desserts didn't tempt me, and there was no chocolate to be had!  Which was sad as I had been looking forward to having some.  If there wasn't lots of temptation for me this year, I still feel like I ate too much, and indulged a little too.

A few of us broke down on Saturday afternoon and while we were out picked up some chocolate to put out for the group.  I know I ate more than what was good for me, but at least is was good chocolate!  Enjoyable chocolate!
Saturday afternoon menu

I did get out on two occasions for 30 minute runs, so I wasn't 100% sedate all weekend.

All in all, I had a great time, I enjoyed spending it with good friends, getting in some quality stitching time and eating some great food!  If this affects my weigh in this week, I only have myself to blame... if I stay the same or have a small loss I'll be very happy!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Challenge & Temptation!

A couple of times a year I get together with my stitching friends and we spend the weekend at a wonderful, big B&B in the country.  That weekend is here!  Our motto says it all : stitch, eat, sleep... we pretty much do these in this exact order!  For anyone who is watching their waistline this is a tough weekend!  Our breakfasts are made by the B&B but the rest of our food is all potluck.  I must admit over the years we as a group have been moving to the healthier side of things.  But there are still treats about and temptations to deal with!

How do I prepare for this weekend?  I always try to have a good week beforehand, I try to stay within my daily points allowance I also try to exercise daily.  Besides teaching at Taekwon-Do Monday night, I've done exactly that!  So I try to stay ahead of the game.

The weekend itself, I bring some of my favourite healthy nibblie foods such as a veggie and fruit tray.  I've found a big hit seems to be a huge bowl full of red grapes on the table in the area we sit and stitch.  They are just so sweet and tasty!  When its meal time I survey what is put out first, then I decide what healthy foods I'll have a good sized helping of and what high calorie/fat must-haves that I'll have a taste of.  I also always take with me my running/walking gear, if its not raining Ill go out for a run or walk each morning of the retreat... in the hopes of burning off a few of those treats I consumed the day before!

Some years I succeed with this plan, and some years I fail miserably!  Some years I let temptation get the better of me and eat more of what's not good for me than what is!  Some years I don't seem to be able to stop myself from grazing.

We'll find out how I did this year when I step on the scale next week!

Friday, November 11, 2011

I Remember

Its Remembrance Day, are you wearing your Poppy?  I've been wearing mine since November 1st rolled around.

If you have a chance today, thank a Vet, or someone currently serving!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Meeting Topic - Taming TV Time

Did you know that the average Canadian spends 28.5 hours per week watching TV?  Often we're not only watching TV but we're shovelling the food back while we're sitting on our behinds watching TV!  Why do we watch TV, really there's two basic reasons, for entertainment and/or down time.  For me, TV is definitely downtime.

This is actually not a topic I'm super excited about this week or rah-rah cheerleaderish about.  Essentially Weight Watchers is trying to encourage us to use that time to be active.  I use this time to relax and to stitch!

For many of us pre-weight loss journey we'd come home from work, put on our PJs and plonk ourselves down infront of the TV with a big-ole snack!  I was guilty of this myself once upon a time.

Pre Weight Watchers many of us would snack on :
  • chips
  • cookies
  • candy/chocolate
  • ice cream
  • cheese & crackers
  • nuts
These are all high fat, high carb food!  Definitely once past the lips ... straight to the hips!

Now that we're on our weight loss journey we tend to snack on :
  • Frozen yogurt
  • limited nuts
  • popcorn (microwave/air popped)
  • vegetables
  • fruit
  • salsa
  • melba toast
  • Weight Watchers products
  • veggie chips/ baked chips
  • turkey pepperets
So Weight Watchers is encouraging you to use your TV time and make it your active time.  To either exercise in front of the TV or use the commercials to be active.  Some suggestions are :
  • Put a piece of stationary equipment in front of the TV and walk/cycle while you watch your favourite show
  • During the commercials up your resistance/speed/or incline use this time to do intervals and increase your heart rate
  • Do crunches/plank/push ups and more during the commercials
  • Sit on a exercise ball instead of on the couch to work your abdominal muscles
  • So much more!
Why am I not so crazy about this week's topic?  Because I like to get the day's work done before I settle in front of the TV.  The TV is my reward for a job well done!  There's nothing I look forward to more than at the end of a work day, after my workout, dinner and whatever else needs to be done putting my feet up later in the evening putting on the TV and picking up my stitching!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Today was weigh in day, I had doubts about how I did this week.  I had a "points sticker shock" moment on Saturday when I had lunch at Pizza Hutt with my friends from Taekwon-Do.  Did you know a personal pizza runs you an average of 19 points?  Eeek!  Thank goodness I did 2 hours of sparring prior to that!  I felt a little shaky on my food and a wee bit of mindless grazing this week I was sure wasn't going to help the matter!

It turns out I did fairly well this week!  I lost 1 lbs!  So I'm now down 2.5 lbs since my new start.  When I put these 10 lbs back on, I was pretty sure I could take the weight off all on my own.  Over six months of "trying" proves that I can't do this alone, that I need the support that my Weight Watchers meeting, peeps, and leader offers!  I should of know better than struggling on my own (except I was going in to weigh in once a month), because I couldn't initially loose my weight on my own either.

I finally am starting to feel good about myself, and I'm feeling in the right head space to loose this weight!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Thanks Amy!

From the moment I packed and put my gym bag in my car this morning I didn't really want to go.  That feeling followed me all day long.  When it was time to leave work, I still didn't want to go.

So Amy made a deal with me, that I had to text her when I got to the gym, she had to text me when she went to the pool tonight.  So I went, and I did.

For some reason tonight I just dragged my feet through my workout.  I did a quick 13 minute run on the treadmill to warm up before hitting the weight machines.  That was the longest 13 minutes of my life, I felt like that run would never end.  I just don't get it because not quite two months ago I ran for over 2 hours and did a 1/2 marathon!  Today it was a struggle to get through it.

Oh well, I went, I did it, I conquered.

I weigh in tomorrow, and for some reason I feel like I didn't do too great this week.  Only the scale will tell.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Putting My Teaching Training Wheels Back On

When my Mum went into the hospital in September, I asked to be taken off of the teaching schedule at Taekwon-Do.  It was more important for me to be there with her than be in the dojang.  Once she was home at the end of the month I decided to take October off as well to get my life back into some sort of order again.

So tonight, it was back to the teaching schedule for this girl.  Boy, I felt like a little girl again, with wobbly training wheels on my bike.  Over the next few weeks I'll get myself back in the swing of things and give a much better class than I did tonight!

Its a crazy week and its too bad I won't be getting in a little training myself!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

When Its Gorgeous Out... Go Run!

The days are getting shorter and the weather is getting cooler.  I'm waking up to either having to start my car before heading to work or scraping the windows when I forget.  This means that my running days outdoors are starting to wane.

I have found I do prefer to run outside!  You have an obvious start and stop point and scenery to look at.  The treadmill, well its just boring!  Personally starting at Todd's tool collection in the basement isn't my idea of fun.  I know some people run while they watch TV, I've tried that and I find the commercials starting and ending just earmark how much time has or hasn't passed.  I like to be oblivious to how long I'm running for.  My best runs are when I don't realize how much time has gone by, my worst runs are when I'm counting the minutes until I can get off of that stupid thing.  I know some people run year round, that there's all kinds of gear to do that.  I consider myself a fair weather runner.  I also live in a Village, that's right a village.  There's one sidewalk and its probably only a couple of hundred meters long.  So depending on my mood I'm either running on pavement (short runs) or dirt roads (long runs).  Not only do I dislike the cold, there's a lack of sidewalks for me to run on, and well roads in the country just aren't well plowed and I'm paranoid about foot/ankle/knee injuries.  In the past I've sprained my ankle multiple times and I've torn ligaments in my right foot.  As you can see I have many reasons not to run outside in the winter.

So once the snow flies or it gets too cold for my liking I'll return to the treadmill.  For the winter I'll be doing shorter runs 3-5K (I can't psychologically do more than that on a treadmill) and focus more on my speed/pace.  I've already noticed that from spring to fall, I have improved!  In the spring I was running on average 5.4-5.5 on my treadmill and the last few times I've been on it, I'm ruining consistently at a 5.7-5.8!  That's heartening to see.  When I first started running 4.8 was fast!  In an ideal world I'd love to be running a consistent 6.0 by spring (that's a 10 minute mile!).

Look at this!  I started running with a Nike sensor and now just use the Nike GPS app the beginning of October last year.  I have now racked up 600 Kms!  Once upon a time the only case you'd find me running was if the house was on fire, and that would be out the door and stopping shortly thereafter.

I'm not in love with running, I recognize that its a challenge for me to do (I like to be challenged), its awesome cardio and calorie burn.  And of course its free!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Becoming Re-Inspired

I had to give up a fair part of my weekend to Takewon-Do stuff.  I always feel a little resentful when I have to do this.  Often once I get there I'm very happy to be there.  Friday night and today Grand Master Lu held is first Seminar as a Grand Master and this was being done to compliment the testing that was happening this afternoon for 5 candidates who were ready to become Masters (7th Dan).

The seminar for me was great, and I really needed it!  Friday night we concentrated on the Elements of the Theory of Power and the Training Secrets of Taekwon-Do.  To practice each element we did one pattern per element, which pretty much covered all of the colour belt patterns.  Each time I go to a seminar I always walk away with a new tip or tidbit of information I didn't know before.  This was true of Friday night, I learnt some new facts about the sine wave we use while in motion.  I learnt that though Takewon-Do was introduced as a martial art in 1955 that sine wave wasn't introduced until 1984, I just can't imagine Taekwon-Do without it!

Today's portion of the Seminar focused on sparring and self-defense, I openly admit these are my two least favourite aspects of the training cycle of Taekwon-Do (fundamental movements, patterns, sparring, and self-defense).  The focus was more on the sparring and instead of it being taught by Grand Master Lu we were being instructed by a Master from Montreal who had been the World Champion for sparing back in 1992.  I think for the first time in the almost 15 years I have been involved in Taekwon-Do I actually enjoyed sparring!  Well we didn't actually spar but he spent the time explaining strategies, how to move, how to think, how to react in the ring.  He had a lot of great drills that I'm looking forward to the next time I teach during sparring week!  I made a point of going over and thanking him, let him know that as someone who doesn't like to spar I thoroughly enjoyed what he had to teach us (its that compliment thing again!).

I found this seminar inspiring for me as a student and as an instructor.  Its given me the urge to go back to training more frequently, something I have really been dragging my heels over for far too long!  Like I said its given me some ideas to take back as an instructor as well.  I can only continue to become a better instructor if I continue to learn myself.

My instructor, Mr. Marin is on the left

After a lunch break the testing of the prospective Masters began it took over 2 hours to test the 5 candidates.  One of them my instructor Sabum Marin!  All five candidates had been involved in Taekwon-Do for on average 30 years.  What was particularly inspiring for me today was to see the two women testing to become Masters!  These two ladies will be the first two Masters in Canada!  For sure a historical moment in Canadian Taekwon-Do! 

I have always envisioned myself getting my 4th Degree in Taekwon-Do (I am currently a 3rd Degree), becoming an international instructor.  Seeing these two women today, has shown me that the door is open for me, to become a Master someday.

Sadly I had to leave before the promotions were done, so I don't know for sure if everyone passed.  I would say they all did a fantastic job and everyone walked away a Master!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Pay Someone a Compliment Today!

How many times have you thought to yourself "she looks pretty today", "that colour look s nice on her", "hmm I think she's lost some weight".  Next time you think that... vocalize it!  Tell the person in question!  It could be the one day that she needs a compliment, that she's feeling low.  One compliment can change someones day, make them hold their head a little higher, put a spring in their step. 

Once your weight loss becomes noticeable boy do the comments start pouring in!  Those compliments are the proof that your hard work is paying off!  They help your confidence level, steels your resolve to stay on plan, and stops you from grabbing a cookie, chips, an extra drink, whatever your vice is!

Compliments when you're loosing weight are great but then once the people around you get used to the "new" you they stop.  You really, really, really do start to miss those compliments!  Today I got a compliment from a co-worker she asked me if I started loosing weight again.  Which I was very proud to answer yes!  She not only said I looked like I had lost weight but that I was looking a little more muscular!  Wooo hoo my hard work at the gym is paying off, my resolve to say no to temptation is worth it!

Talking about temptation, today I turned down pizza from my favourite pizza joint, and chocolate from the candy dish!  Also tonight I had a seminar to go to in the evening, the seminar and home were in complete opposite directions so going home wasn't an option.  In the past I would of grabbed a bite out, but this morning a little pre-planing and I packed a nice little dinner for myself.  I not only saved myself some unwanted calories/sugar/salt but a little money too.

Yay!  The weekend is here!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

What Makes You Happy?

Many of us eat to stuff our emotions down we eat when we're sad, mad, angry, bored, depressed and more.  Sometimes its hard to be happy.  I find when I'm happy the urge to eat just isn't there, unless I'm hungry.

What makes me happy?

My Partner Todd -- He might really frustrate me some days, but he's been with me from fat to thin, through good time and bad for almost 20 years now.

My friends -- I've been so lucky to meet some very special and wonderful  people in my life.

My cats -- I've grown up with cats all my life.  Back in March I had to put down my first cat that I had gotten when I left home.  Oh boy that hurt, it hit me very hard.  The two furry babies in my life right now are Hunter (9) and Zeus (10 months) oh they sure make me happy and laugh often.  They are also are a great comfort when you're feeling low.  They know when you're sad, when you need a cuddle.

My Stitching -- I LOVE cross stitch!  I mean I really love to cross stitch!  Yes, stitching can be a very solitary past time, you do have to keep your hands clean when stitching so there's no eating while stitching (or at least very careful with your food choices).  I have also take this past time and turned it into something very social.  I have made some amazing friends through stitching, we get together to stitch, I go to retreats, I take classes and more.  I do think hobbies are very important to our mental well being.

Photography -- I've always liked taking pictures, I won my first camera when I was 12 or 13 and I've had one ever since.  A few years ago I got serious with the purchase of a D-SLR and an introductory course at my local college.  I use my photography as an excuse to get outside and go for a walk!  Not only do I have a D-SLR but I keep a point and shoot in my purse at all times, you never know when there's a cool photo opportunity around the corner!

Takewon-Do -- When visiting a friend back in 1997 she was taking Taekwon-Do, I went with her to watch her TKD class and the instructor pulled in for a bit of the warm up.  You know what, I liked it.  So once I got back home and had the cash to spare I joined a local TKD school.  Oh boy, I was hooked!  Today, I am a 3rd Degree Black Belt and Instructor.  My weight loss really benefited my abilities in TKD!

So what makes you happy?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Meeting Topic : Experienced A Scale Surprise?

I went and weighed in tonight at my local Weight Watchers meeting (they run meetings Wed/Sat) because I'll be at Taekwon-Do workshop Saturday morning and I just couldn't do both on the same day.  So I arranged my week to make it to tonight's meeting.

I wasn't sure exactly how my evening was going to play out after work.  I wanted to stop into a quilt shop that I knew sold DMC floss (ran out of one colour for a cross stitch project... see other blog), I wanted to squeeze in a quick 3K run, shower and get to my WW meeting in time to weigh in before the meeting started at 6:15.  Amazingly I fit it all in (now keep in mind I start work early and finish early)!  It was too nice outside not to go for a run today!

So, I weighed in today and its not been a full week since I weighed in, and it was an evening weigh in not the morning one I was used to.  I really didn't have high expectations, I went in hoping for a 1/2 lbs loss.  Surprisingly in under a week I've lost 1.5 lbs!  I am now down to 154.5 yay less than 10 lbs to go!  That was a lovely surprise.  Hopefully I use this to spur me onto my next weigh in.

This week's topic was pretty much a reminder that the scale is just a tool, one simple tool to help gauge our progress... that we shouldn't get hung up on a number.  One of three things happen when you step on the scale: loose weight, gain weight or stay the same.  That number doesn't give you the full picture though.  That number doesn't show: the inches you've lost, how your body has changed, how your mentality has changed, the things you couldn't physically do before this journey, the compliments you receive once your weight loss becomes obvious.  Remember when you do step on that scale its one small measure of your success, to keep in mind the big picture and how you're changing your life for the better!

There are weeks where the scale just doesn't make sense.  Some weeks you know you've been bad, and you know you've bended the plan like a pretzel and magically you've lost weight!  Then there's the frustrating weeks where you have been a saint, you've eaten right, you've exercised and for some strange reason you've gained!  Sometimes it takes two weeks for either a sinful week or an angelic week to show up at the scale, so keep that in mind, keep focused.

When you have an unexpected gain there can be any number of factors to cause our bodies to gain weight
  • Not eating enough
  • Liquids, did you know one 500ml bottle of water weighs one pound?
  • Not drinking enough
  • Hormones
  • Exercise
  • What we eat
  • Sodium
  • Medication
  • Insufficient sleep
I liked one of the analogies my leader made tonight, that weight loss is like a roller coaster we have gains and we have losses.  Its up to you to decide if you're on the kiddie coaster or the biggest coaster in the park!

In the end, its all about being healthy!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Another Reason To Stay Motivated

Today's November 1st do you know what that means?  Its the start of NaBloPoMo!  That's right, its National Blog Posting Month, so for the month of November we are encouraged to post one blog entry every day for the whole month.  I participated 100% last year, so let's see if I can do it again this year!

So hopefully I can use this to spur myself towards getting back on program and loosing weight, by having to face you my readers on a daily basis.

Today's evil culprit I couldn't resist!

I did okay today, though temptation abounded again!  I don't think I did as well as yesterday but I did well.  This morning at work our breakfast in support of United Way.  The tables were laden with big bagels, croissants, tasty loaves, cheese and other goodies.  So this  morning I made sure I had some yogurt and instant oatmeal on hand before I left the house just in case breakfast wasn't what I considered "point friendly".  After perusing the choices I grabbed some fruit and one tiny piece of banana bread (I love that stuff) and took it up to library-land to get away from the rest of it.  I was okay until lunchtime when one of my co-workers had cut into one of her daughter's from scratch cakes that was amazingly decorated.  I had to try a little piece.  Oh my goodness!  I had to have a second small piece!  It was the most amazing cake I've had so far!  I felt pretty guilty about the second piece after I ate it but you can't undo that.  Since I had already indulged today I stashed away the two mini chocolate bars that materialized on my desk when I cleared away some paperwork.  Those can be my dessert tomorrow night!

Tomorrow evening, I weigh in!  Ack!