Saturday, June 30, 2012

The End of the Shred

Wow. Here it is. The dreaded progress picture day. I was completely certain that I would be disappointed. I really slacked off the last 10 days. I ate kind of poorly and phoned in a few of my workouts. But now, seeing the pictures, I wish I would have worked a little harder!

I'm sure most of you realize this, but remember that a baby belly is incredibly hard to lose and my skin has not regained all of its elasticity (but I think it's definitely getting there). I only mention this because there are many people out there who are now participating in the 30 Day Shred and I don't want them to be discouraged because I don't have a six-pack! You might get one! I think I can feel mine under my skin even though I cannot see it just yet.

Sorry, I know that one is bigger than the other... but, still! Awesome!

I can dig this! My shoulders look a lot better!
I started at 150 and I ended at 150, but who cares? Did you see those pictures? Also, I lost 1 inch from my waist, so I'll take it!

Overall, I loved the shred. I think it's a phenomenal workout for beginners who want to get serious. A few people have asked me if it's hard on your knees, and I hate to say that if you have knee problems you would not be able to get past level one, more than likely. Level one is on YouTube, so try it out!

I would also suggest that while you should always give it your all, you should NOT give up if you cannot get through each level without stopping. I only had one workout in which I did not have to take a break. Jillian wants to push you by telling you to not stop, and that is a great goal to have, but don't feel like you have to quit the workout just because you can't do everything she asks of you just yet. You will eventually!

I started my new ab workout today, and it's definitely a killer. I think it's going to really pay off, though! Also, I re-started training for that 5k and I'm ahead of where I was when I left off! Such a great feeling!

I decided to try to clean up my eating too, so I decided to try Bob Harper's "Skinny Rules." I am going to add one each week, starting today with Rule #1: Drink a large glass of water before every meal. I'll weigh in every Saturday (or Friday or Sunday... since I'll be on vacation next week). Just wondering how effective the skinny rules will be with a normal exercise program.

Weight: 150
Waist: 36"
Hips: 40 1/4"
Thigh: 23"

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Pictures and Numbers

Breaking news: I am considering my mom arms officially gone! It makes me want to cry and jump for joy. But I have company over and Jillian's level 3 makes jumping very nearly impossible once I'm done.

In other news, we had 6 month pictures of Noah taken yesterday. Before Jordan's aunt got there to take them I have to admit that I had a minor (major) meltdown regarding pants. And I cried. A lot. But then I found my super special size 8 jeans that magically fit me (even though no other size 8 jeans fit) and all ways right and the pictures are going to be spectacular.

Noah totally face planted on our hardwood floor during the shoot yesterday. I suppose it would make me a bad mom if I admitted that I after I saw that he was ok, I laughed? And I continued to laugh a good portion of the time he was crying. Mostly because after a while he had no idea what he was crying about.

My favorite picture so far? This pretty candid.
I feel so much more healthy than I used to and I think that it shows. Extra motivation: being more energetic with my child.

I stopped counting calories the other day. I was realizing that my body just did not want to run on 1200 calories a day. Ever since I starting eating (correctly for the most part) when I'm hungry, I've had the motivation to start/finish my workouts and they don't seem like such a drag. Calorie counting has been a great exercise for me to learn what I'm putting into my body, but it's not something that I can (read: want to) maintain forever. If I did, I would develop a very unhealthy fixation on my eating. I also haven't stepped on the scale in a couple days. I'm going to work hard and try my best not to overeat (which is actually a struggle for me) and see what happens. I don't want to obsess over the scale. Will I check it? Yes. I do eventually want to be down to a certain weight. But if I look freaking awesome and I'm not at that weight? I'll deal.

Monday, June 18, 2012

30 Days after Jillian

I feel like I'm constantly thinking of these awesome ideas for blogs and then they fly right out of my head when I sit down to write. This is what we affectionately refer to as the "mommy-brain."

The Shred is... going. I'm not losing the way that I really wanted to and, yes, I understand that I'm gaining muscle, and, yes, I look more toned than ever before. But I've just got to tell you all that I'm feeling rather impatient. And really really tired of counting calories. Especially when I go over 1200 calories and I gain 4 pounds. Every. Freaking. Time.

Jordan basically thinks that I should toss the scale in the trash can, but I really can't. If it weren't for weighing myself I wouldn't understand that what I'm eating really makes a difference. Yes, it also makes a difference in how I feel, but sometimes how I feel is directly related to what I weigh. As in, I feel much healthier and fitter now that I'm 148 instead of 160.

I planned out my next 30 days of working out (actually, I've planned out the next year, but we'll just take it as it comes). It looks a little something like this:

  • 5k training. I'm getting back into running with a vengeance. If I could have my way in a perfect world, next July I will be running a marathon. My running training will be continuous, so you will be seeing this (or 10k training or half training, etc.) for the next year or so.
  • 300/30 Ab Challenge. I didn't want to just run and forget about everything that I've worked so hard for during the shred, so this is the new 30 day goal. The workout looks like this (25 reps of each move):
          • In-N-Outs
          • Bicycles
          • Reverse Bicycles
          • Crunchy Frog (I know, weird names)
          • Cross leg/Wide leg sit ups
          • Scissors
          • Hit butt ups
          • Heels to the heavens
          • Roll-up V-ups
          • Leg climbers
          • Kayakers
  • Tank Top Arms. I found this on Pinterest and it just seemed like a good way to keep from losing everything that I've worked for with the shred. I'm not incredibly hopeful that it will make my arms any more toned than what they already are, but maybe it'll keep them from shrinking.
          • 10 push-ups
          • 24 bicep burners
          • 15 shoulder presses
          • 10 push-ups
          • 15 tricep dips
          • 15 back rows
          • 15 lateral raises
          • 10 push-ups
          • 15 tricep kick backs with 20 tricep pull backs
What does all this mean? It means I will be putting a lot more time than 30 minutes into my work out. It will probably run more like an hour now. I just have to keep telling myself that it's worth it. Especially running. I miss it and I really do love it. Now to just get down to business and do it!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Dear First Time Moms

I think I have been in denial about how hard it is to be a mom.

Let me explain.

I always wanted to work outside of the home. Since I am now on a temporary hiatus from full-time work and am at home a majority of the time, I assume that I need to constantly be moving from the moment I get up until the moment that my head hits the pillow. When I don't accomplish that, I feel defeated and useless. After all, my husband has a full time job and is getting his masters degree. What could I possibly be doing that is harder than that?

I don't think that people truly understand what stay-at-home moms do. I don't think that it really sinks into their mind that when you pay someone to watch your child, that's all that person does all day. They don't clean your house or cook your meals. They only watch your child.

I know that this has been said and will be said a thousand times more eloquently than I could ever say it, but here is the bare minimum of what I do every day with a six-month-old:

  • Feed him a bottle 4-5 times a day (takes anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour)
  • Change his diaper at least 10 times
  • Spoon feed him twice daily
  • Give him a bath (sometimes, kind of daily... maybe)
  • Do laundry
  • Do dishes (although I have recently recruited my husband to help me with this)
  • In general, make sure that the baby is not screaming.
That might now seem like a lot. Especially if you've never taken care of a little human being before. But let me tell you, I've been busy in my life. I mean, 20 hours of sleep in the week of finals busy. And yet I have still never been so tired in my life.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that you are not weak for not vacuuming your floors every day. Or if your dishes haven't been done in three days. Or if the only underwear you have left is the fake jeans underwear that you bought as a joke.

Monday, June 11, 2012

What's Next

I was going to do a cop out post that was just full of little fun motherhood facts. But we had a fun day today and I decided to talk about that instead.
I did level 2 for the second time today and my elbow is killing me. If there is anyone out there who knows how I might remedy that, I would surely appreciate it. If I wasn't on a tight schedule, I would quit the DVD for a few days to heal, but I leave for Florida almost as soon as I'm done with this workout and, also, I've made a commitment to myself that I will not skip a day. Because, usually, when I skip a day I'm done for good.
I'm getting more and more motivated because I'm watching people join this journey with me. My husband even tried it tonight. I told him he didn't have to keep doing it, but I just wanted the respect I deserved. He said, "Oh. Oh I respect you." I love him.
I finished up my academic vita today. It was so exciting to see everything I've done in that sort of format. I'm really looking forward to the fall and everything that will come with it. I will be teaching a course at MBU, taking classes at Fontbonne, substitute teaching, and teaching piano/voice lessons. It will be a busy year, to be sure, but it will all pay off in the end.
I've been trying to decide what my next fitness goals will be after the end of the 30 Day Shred. Part of my next segment of time will be in Florida, so it needs to be something relatively low-maintenance. I believe that I will start training with my couch to 5k app, but I don't want to lose my muscle definition. So, any ideas on an easy strength programs that run about 3-4 days a week would be appreciated. I wanted to try P90X next, but I really miss running and since I get such bad shin splints, I can't do that kind of intense workout and run at the same time. In the next 3 years I want to work my way up to a marathon, and that will only happen if I start training in earnest very soon.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

30 Days to Fitness

I am, literally, in awe over the reception I've gotten regarding the 30 Day Shred. I've had six other people join me on this awesome journey. We're all at different stages, but we all have something in common. And it's not that we want to kick Jillian in the teeth. We're on our way to becoming fit and healthy.
It's not that it won't be hard. It's totally hard. I was reminded today that sometimes I will hit a wall and just not be able to do the entire routine. This comes as a hard blow today since I am moving up to level two tomorrow. Makes level two seem really scary. My right knee hurts, I can't quite shake the shin splints, and my back is spasming for some reason.
I have really down days, too. Days when I just can't stop myself from eating that Chick Fil A or that Twix bar and the next thing I know I'm up three pounds. Also days when I take a really hard look at my stomach and realize that it looks exactly the same because, well, a child was in there a few months ago and it just needs some time to adapt. Those are the days that I just want to quit.
Luckily for me (and all you other moms out there) I have my own personal alarm clock every morning who gets me up and going. He eats, I get dressed, and we head downstairs. Let me tell you, there is not a whole lot more motivating than a little guy in a bouncy chair hopping along with you. I am beginning to understand that I am going to leave a legacy of fitness for him and my other children. There is a family that I just think is astounding that lives a little bit away from us. The mom and dad run 5k's and some half marathons and both of their older children have been running 5k's with them. What a special moment for them. What a great moment of pride for the kids. There are doing something that most adults will never do in their lifetime.
I know that for those of you doing the shred with no kids, this is a little bit different. But I know most of you, and I know that most of you want kids. You're doing the right thing for them now. For those of you who do not want kids/cannot have kids, I challenge you to take a look at the difference a few Facebook posts have made. All I have done is announced that I've completed a day and not only is there a tremendous outpouring of support, but there are people joining me. You can make a difference in other people's lives by being fit. Who knows but that someone who would have had a heart attack 30 years from now, won't? All because you started living a healthier lifestyle and they followed suit.

And now for the pictures.

I debated for a long time about putting these up because there isn't a major difference yet and I don't want to discourage anyone. But then I remembered that my blog is all about no spin on mommyhood and I want to make sure that all the moms know that getting that stomach back is a process for many (read: most) of us.

Day 1: 155 pounds

Day 10: 148 pounds

Just look at where that baby used to be... he could probably still fit.
My inches are about the same, but I feel like it's starting to redistribute. And look at my legs! Getting there!
Ugh. There is not a whole lot that I hate more than back fat.
I can see a little bit of a difference here. Can't wait to see what the next ten days brings.
This is me flexing. I know. Flexing what?
This is me flexing today! Yowser! That's a big difference!
I hope you all are encouraged and not discouraged. I'm just an average person doing average things. This isn't supposed to prove that I can get fit incredibly fast. But this is something that anyone can do. Even new moms.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Late Night Rambles

I thought about composing some kind of grand blog post tonight, but I am just so tired, I don't know if I can find words to make something grand. So you might just have to deal with my disjointed thoughts.

One of my favorite things in the world is watching Jordan and Noah cuddle. We are all sitting downstairs watching 24 and winding down from a long day of traveling and hanging out with Nana and Grandpa. Noah is gently cooing at Jordan and we are all snuggled up in blankets, just chilling out.

I love baby sleepers. I remarked to Jordan that I wished that I had footie pj's, but pretty quickly retracted that statement. But seriously, there is not much that looks more comfortable than a baby in a sleeper.

It's really hard to wind down to go to sleep while watching 24. There's a nuclear bomb? It might go off? Are you going to disarm it? How many more people will Jack Bauer have to manually dismember?

That will probably have to be all for tonight. I'm finding that my eyes are literally shutting on their own and I'm starting to hear my bed calling my name.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Weight Loss

If you've been following me on Facebook/Twitter, you'll know that I've started a major weight loss campaign that includes 30 straight days of Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred. The journey started with a status of mine that read:

Sometimes I think that the only way to lose weight at an accelerated pace is to finally just get mad enough to do it.

I decided that this statement could use a little clarification and back-story. So here it is.

I come from a small family. I mean, when you weight 135 pounds you start to stick out in all the wrong directions kind of family. I have always been a little bit bigger boned, 135 looked pretty ok on me and I tended to stay in that range. I hit my lowest adult weight in college, 130. I was feeling good, eating all I wanted, and basically ruining my health. I, literally, ate a Big Mac meal with a Coke 3 times a week. But because my weight didn't go up I assumed I was fine.

Jordan and I got engaged and I was ecstatic.

But then my body said, "NO MORE MCDONALDS!" And at my wedding I weighed the heaviest I had ever been at 150 lbs.

I know, I know, 150 lbs is small potatoes to many people. I know people whose goal weight is 150 lbs. But because of my small frame, 150 lbs looks morel like 200 lbs (give or take). A healthy weight for my height is anywhere between 115 and 144 lbs.

I worked hard and eventually got down to about 135, then got pregnant.

At the end of my pregnancy I weighed 180 lbs (very normal) and when labor was all said and done and I had lost all that I was going to lose without working at it, I was at 160 lbs. Slowly (very very slowly) I trimmed off 10 lbs. I was feeling pretty happy with that change.

Then came what I will refer to as "The Wedding Dress Incident."

My sister is an aspiring model, and she asked me if she could use my wedding dress for a photo shoot. I said, "Sure!" and thought nothing else about it. Until the pictures showed up on Facebook.

Oh my word. My sister looks better in my wedding dress than I ever did. At first, I burst into tears. And then I got mad. Oh man. Did I get mad.

And so it began.

I have been doing the 30 Day Shred and taking Jillian's Fat Burning pills for the last 5 days. I track my calorie intake almost obsessively and drinking water and green tea like it is my job. I have lost 4 pounds in 6 days and I can already feel my body getting stronger.

I want to lose 1-2 pounds a week. That is the safest way, of course. I hope to be down to 125 sometime in mid-September. When I reach my goal (which may or may not change depending on how I feel about my body) I will be doing a trash the dress session with one of my favorite photographers of all time.

I am excited for many reasons. Not the least of which is the healthy example I have began setting for Noah. It's never too early, in my opinion, to start exercising in front of/with your child.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Photo Dump

He started to figure out how to put his feet together and that was our new favorite thing for about a month and a half. It was adorable.

This is right before his four month check up. I had been fighting with him about tummy time since birth. He just laid face down and screamed. And then, one day, this happened. So much joy for me!

This was the saddest and most uncomfortable thing I have ever seen. And so, of course, I took a picture.

At his four month well child visit he decided he would roll over. Probably to save mommy from having to explain his severe lack of tummy time. What a good kid.

First time eating solids. He looks a lot happier here than he ended up being at the end. He was not please with me or the bumbo chair.

This picture is hilarious. He fell asleep with his bottle half in his mouth and half naked. He looks like a total drunk.

This is the Roberts family. There are nine kiddos altogether, but here are six of them. They were watching Noah and took him out for a family jam session in the driveway. They are all so adorable. Definitely one of my favorite families of all time.

My very first Mother's Day. We almost forgot to take this picture. That would have been a shame, because I love it a lot.

This is simply hilarious. That's the only reason it's here.

Jordan's last day at Jackson High School. New adventures beginning at Cape in August!

This was Grammy's last day of school ever! She retired at the end of this year. This isn't Grammy pictured, but it is another wonderful lady from the school. We surprised her with balloons and party hats and noise makers. I will tell you one thing: The next time someone tells me that teachers have it easy or get paid too much, I'm going to set their hair on fire. Then they will understand how teachers feel every day.

This is our friend, Tim. He and his wife, Ashley (who was in my wedding) live in KC and were in St. Louis for a wedding so we met up with them for lunch and a science center date. This is Tim feeding Noah to the robotic T-Rex.

The same visit we got to meet sweet baby Addy and Noah and she hit it off immediately. I love his face. He's a boss.

We went to the Cheesecake Factory for our two-year anniversary. Noah wanted to help me pick out a cheesecake. He is deep in thought.

And then he wanted to help me eat the cheesecake. Immediately following this picture he burst into tears because he couldn't have any.

5 month picture! He is way too big.

This is our first outing to the pool. Grammy got him the turtle vest... but it was obviously very awkward. So we ended up taking it off and just holding him.

After swimming!

May 29th- Our actual two year anniversary. We had really good conversation that night. I miss that sometimes!

Look at those eyes! Do you see them? Do you??

Too cute for words.

This was at our good good friend Nathaniel's wedding. Jordan was a groomsman and, can I just say, he was looking mighty fine in his tuxedo? Even if he is making a duck face.

Love the sanctuary. It is so classy.

This is the beautiful bride. I love her face. They were so excited to see one another. I don't know if I have ever been to a more perfect wedding in terms of romance.

Candy bar at the reception. I may have eaten a whole cup of gummy bears. The bears on the edge are hugging. Don't judge the gummy bears.