Monday, May 26, 2014


I haven't worked out as much as I usually do, but I did have a good run yesterday. I finished Week 4 Day 3 of Couch to 5k and was able to add an extra 3 minute and 5 minute interval. Here is my training goal for the week:

Monday - C25k
Tuesday - mom & baby yoga, circuit training at night
Wednesday - C25k and strength training
Thursday - Spin
Friday - C25k
Saturday - Spin

The good news is that I have stuck to my goal of going back to my original diet for 2 weeks. Tomorrow will be day 14. Once the two weeks are over, not much is going to change, I'm just going to allow a greater variety of snacks, and 2 treats per week. I think I have lost 5 pounds in 2 weeks, and that is without much exercise.

Harper is really into blowing raspberries these days - it's her preferred way of conversing. This morning when she woke up, she started doing them in her crib right away. It's like she was excited to wake up and remember the new skill she learned. She also got a high chair and front-facing stroller. She's much happier because she wants to see the world. Walmart was fascinating to her.

And here's Harper doing some Ab exercises and the Happy Baby yoga pose.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Love this, and needed to read this today

Day 2 = Success

I'm very tired from being on my own with Harper this week. Thankfully, Ed is back. I was able to get Week 3 Day 2 of my Couch 2 5k done, but I cancelled my circuit training class. Just too tired.

I got the eating right today though. 12 more days to go!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

A commitment to myself

My workouts have been great for 2+ weeks now. Unfortunately though, my eating has not been as clean as it can be. My eating is not as bad as it used to be when I was 300lbs. I'm not eating things like bagels, muffins, ice cream or pizza. However, my body really cannot handle what a normal body can. When I eat things like wheat wraps and goldfish crackers, I don't lose weight. I'm on Prednisone and also stopped my thyroid medicine, per my doctor, and both of these make the weight issue an uphill battle.

I'm putting in the effort and training so hard to be ready for 12/13/14, so now it's also time to ensure I start losing weight. I'm going back to the original diet for 2 weeks - the diet that started my whole weight loss success. I've started this and stopped it within the first few days a few times recently, so the point of this post is to hold myself accountable.

I already prepared my salad for lunch today so that I can grab it and eat it with one hand. I'm going to have to "pack" my lunches ahead of time. Yesterday's lunch ended up being goldfish crackers, raisins, and Brazil nuts. Things I could grab one-handed because Harper's in a stage where she will NOT be put down in the crib. Baby anger is a real thing - that girl can scream

Dinner tonight will be ground turkey with vegetables. The challenge is going to be tomorrow. Day 2 always kills me. Tomorrow I plan to post pictures of all of my meals, so that I don't give up.

Also, things are looking up. I have some promising opportunities on the horizon. Hopefully 1 of the 3 will work out! I really like this quote below. I've been through a lot this year - losing my job, losing my Dad, and having a baby. The hard times have made me stronger and a more compassionate person - so there is some good to come out of it.

I WILL be back tomorrow to post pictures of the food on the diet. If not, I will have some explaining to myself to do. I want to do awesome in this half marathon!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Step by Step, Day by Day

Every day I'm focusing on my goal. So far my C25k days are non-negotiable. I go to the gym and I knock those runs out. I noticed that the key to getting to the gym (especially because I have to go at night during the week) is as follows:

1. Convince myself *just* to change into my gym clothes and put my sneakers on.
2. Then, convince myself *just* to go to the gym to stretch.
3. Then, convince myself *just* to get on the treadmill to walk.
4. Then, convince myself *just* to do the 5 minute power walk to warm up.

After steps 1-4 I'm finally ready do the run, focusing on one interval at a time. And then after - I always feel great. This is so true:

This morning I went to a bootcamp class. Monday morning bootcamp is going to be a great way to start my week out on the right track. Since having Harper, it is now a huge treat to be able to get my workout in early in the day. You get to feel good all day after a hard workout. Also, I am making today a double workout and still going to circuit training tonight. 

I've made awesome progress on the workout front in the past week, since setting a real goal for myself. My ultimate goal is running 13.1 miles, and carrying less weight is going to make that easier. 

Next up, I need to focus on cleaning up my eating, again. Lunch today is going to be huge spinach and turkey salad. Dinner is going to be salmon and broccoli. The only snacks allowed are peppers and guacamole and Cheerios. Later today Harper and I will walk to Dunkin Donuts for an iced coffee. We did this as a family yesterday and it was a gorgeous spring day.

Harper is currently talking to herself. I can hear her through the monitor. She has the cutest baby girl voice. It's so soft and sweet. I also absolutely love Harper's laugh. It kind of sounds like a cough, but it's so hearty and pure!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

I love my 13.1 goal

Having a goal is making all of the difference. It's not just any goal though, it's one that came from somewhere within me. I don't know why, but I need to prove to myself I can do this. Every food choice and every workout now has a point. I also am happy to have something to look forward to again.

On Saturday I started Couch to 5k at the gym. I downloaded the app, which was a good move because I like the satisfaction of adding each workout to the completed log. I've never followed a structured program before. I realize now that, before the baby, I was so focused on the numbers on the scale that I would just workout as much as I could. Now, with limited time, I have to be more focused. This is the first time in my weight loss journey that my ultimate goal is fitness related and not weight related.

On Saturday I also jumped rope for the first time in a YEAR. I made it 5 minutes with a few brief stops. I'm hoping to work on this.

On Sunday night I went for a walk with Harper and enjoyed the spring air and sunset while Ed ran intervals to get ready for his race.

Monday I walked with Harper for 90 minutes and I went to my circuit training small group training. It was a tough legs workout. I pushed myself hard by thinking about how I'm going to need strong legs to get through 13 miles.

Tuesday was Couch to 5k again and then I spent about 45 minutes on arms using the machines at the gym. Today is a rest day so I can do Couch to 5k again tomorrow, although I may go to yoga tonight depending on my energy level.

My eating has been in control too. Here are some recent healthy meals.

For the Salmon I just coated it with a little olive oil, lemon juice and dill seasoning. It was awesome!

263 days to go!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

I found my motivation!

I was standing at the sink washing the baby's bottles, and it hit me all of sudden - "I want to run a half marathon". I've never felt so sure about something. It was kind of strange how quickly this idea came out of nowhere and how definitive it felt, but I have always loved setting goals that feel out of my reach. If the goal is not challenging enough, if doesn't excite me.

I was already really hoping to go to Florida with the family next winter, so I decided to find a half marathon there. Nothing will feel better than vacationing after running a half marathon. So, almost exactly a year after having Harper, I'll be running the Key West Half Marathon. I signed up today. Ed and Harper are going to run the 5k too.

This means that every day, from now until then, I will have to be focused on my goal. There is a lot of work to do! There are 266 days until I need to be able to run 13 miles! 

To be successful, I'm going to need to work consistently, starting now. I'll have to be focused in my training. I'll also have to be good with eating, because the real key to success will be dropping the baby weight. It's going to be hard work for sure, but I'm already visualizing how I'll feel crossing the finish line. Nothing could make me happier than feeling my best again.

Recently I've been good with my eating, except for a few days around Easter. There was Easter candy, plus I was on very high doses of Prednisone, which is an awful awful drug. Here are some recent healthy food pictures.

Also, life as Mommy just keeps getting better. Harper is no long a little infant, she's an alert baby who wants to see the world! She's trying to sit up by doing these mini crunches - all of the time. Yesterday we went for an hour long walk. It was gorgeous out, and we found a new park in walking distance.

So today is my first day to start my training with my new goal in mind. I'm going to go to the gym since it's rainy here. 

Lastly, my new goal is to post workouts I have done here, as opposed to what I am going to do. I often post ideas here, and never report on the workouts I actually do. 

Here's to January 18, 2015!!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Screw you autoimmune disease

I'm sitting here for a second day in a row, getting another IV. The blind spot in my eye was enlarged again and tests showed inflammation and one additional lesion. At least this is in my already bad eye and my right eye is totally fine right now. I have to come back on Easter morning too. The drug they give me, Prednisone, causes weight gain and bloating - and sometimes it makes me super cranky.

Anyway, I have this legs and arms workout in my head. I'm hoping to do it today if I'm feeling well enough.

20 min stairmill
Back squats 50# 3x12
100 jumping lunges
Leg press 180# 3x10
10 min spin - 2 min climb x 2
Push-ups 3x12
Bicep curls 15# 3x10
Tricep dips 3x20
Shoulder press machine 55# 3x12
Rows (machine) 3x12
Arc trainer - 5 minutes

And a few pictures of my little love. Last week was a big week for her (10 weeks). She rolled over 3x from tummy to back and started laughing. She loves when I hold her in front of a mirror and kiss her cheek.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Life right now

Friday would have been my Dad's 73rd birthday. I still feel his presence everyday, so there's that. But man do I wish we could have had just a little more time together and that he could meet Harper.

On Friday I took Harper for a 1.5 hour walk and then I went to work. At night we had a small family celebration in his honor. We even invited the dogs.

In happier news, I am really adjusting to and loving life as a mother. Harper's smiling, cooing, holding her head up, and just generally really into seeing the world around her. It's so fun (besides the long periods of crying and not taking naps)!

She loves her play mat and batting at the toys. However, in the past week, it's gotten a bit boring for her! She's more interested in walls and windows!

With the spring weather, we've been able to go on some nice, long walks. I even started walking up Heartbreak Hill recently to make it a bit more of a workout for me.

She loves the book 8 Silly Monkeys. She laughs every time we read it to her. She even grins ear to ear if she sees the book from a distance. Daddy calls them Naughty Monkeys.

She also really likes the book "Where are Baby's Easter Eggs". Yesterday for the first time she was reaching out and touching the colorful, shiny Easter Eggs on the last page.

She also really loves music. She loves the music on her play mat and bouncy seat, and she loves when I play music from my iPhone. Sometimes I play fiddling music for her, and sometimes we listen to KidSongs. For a while, her favorite song was "If you're Happy and You Know It". She'd smile every time, but as I'm learning, things get old quickly and it takes something new to make her laugh.

Last Thursday she had her 2 month check-up. She got 2 shots. I was heart wrenching hearing her scream afterwards. She weighed 12.5 lbs and was 23.5 inches. That's 80th % for height and 72nd % for weight. She does LOVE her bottles.

As for how I'm doing, the whole weight loss thing is harder than I thought it would be! Even doing everything "right" I'm not really losing right now. I go to 3-4 one hour circuit training classes per week and walk a few hours per week. While I could be doing more, life is different now that I have a baby. My plan is to just keep on going and hopefully increase what I'm doing as I can. I want to be as healthy as I can be for Harper's sake. I'm trying to remember the saying "9 months to gain the weight, 9 months to lose the weight".

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Soul Cycle

Yesterday was a good day. And often times with weight loss, one good day leads to the next, and then the next.

Harper napped for 3 hours, so I was able to wash bottles, do 30 minutes on the treadmill, take a fish oil pill, and make myself a healthy lunch. For lunch I had a salad with spinach, ground turkey, feta cheese and walnuts. I'm really trying to eat a lot of spinach for the iron. I feel so much better physically and emotionally when I do these things!

And here is how I blog these days - one handed typing.

On a whim, I decided I really wanted to try Soul Cycle. It was their grand opening in our city.  It has been about 5-6 months since I have been to a spin class. I made it though the class, but I definitely was not turning up the resistance every time the instructor said to.

I really enjoyed Soul Cycle. The instructor was so energetic and in shape. It was motivating. They kept the room dark and the music was really motivating. They get huge points for playing Coldplay's "Fix You". That song totally has meditative qualities for me. I can see myself going to a class here or there in the future, but I can't afford to make it part of my routine - it's $30 per class for a drop-in and only a few dollars cheaper if you buy a bunch of classes. 

After Soul Cycle I picked up a nice dinner for Ed and I. We both had salmon with spinach, asparagus, and sweet potatoes.

This morning, we're off to our first Mom and Baby yoga class!

Friday, February 28, 2014

The Ultimate Goal

After losing 160lbs and being in the best shape of my life,  it doesn't feel so great to have gained some of that back. Though, it was for a good reason.

On New Years, while I was still pregnant. I wrote the following goals for 2014:

At the end of 2014, I would like to look back and have a happy 11 month old baby, be back at my pre-pregnancy weight of 145lbs, and be able to run a 5k in under 30 minutes.

My eating has been on track since I had the baby. I'm surprised how easily I fell back into my old pre-pregnancy healthy eating habits. I've been eating lots of spinach since I'm iron deficient. I've been eating oatmeal mixed with chia seeds and fruit for breakfast. I've been eating a lot of salads or turkey for lunch. Dinner has been ground turkey, salmon or steak with a side of vegetables. I've been allowing myself some dark chocolate but am trying to limit that more now. I'm treating myself to one glass of wine per week, and that's quickly becoming a happy ritual.

I have not had pizza or ice cream since I had the baby!

Also, yesterday, I ran for the first time. Just small intervals, but I ran, and I feel great today. I think my body is ready!

I'm being very careful to listen to my body and stop when anything in my abdominal area feels sore. That's been at 25 minutes for my past 2 workouts, so that's when I stopped. I also found this article from Runner's World, which has good advice for how to starting running again after having a baby. 

The plan for today is to do 50 push ups (on knees, I can no longer do them on my toes), some yoga poses, and to walk on the treadmill for 45 minutes at 1.0 incline and 3.3 speed. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

A Taste of Spring

Every year when Spring comes it's the greatest feeling. Today was a tease of what is to come. It was 50 degrees and sunny. It was still cold enough to wear a hat and gloves, but I got outside - twice! 

First we bundled Harper up and went to Castle Island. 

We only walked for about 10 or 15 minutes because I was worried it was too cold for her. I wish I had brought a better hat because the hood on the snow suit was very big. I'm a very nervous new mom... She didn't seem to mind though, she slept the whole time. 

I decided to go back out when we got home because I wanted a better "workout". I took Jaxson with me. It has been a rough few weeks for the poor guy, even though he does get to go to doggy daycare three times a week.

I definitely got my heart rate up for at least 30 minutes, especially on the long hill back to our house. Jaxson won't allow me to walk slowly. It may have been a little too much too soon though, which is disappointing. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

It feels so good!

It's been quite the adjustment getting used to taking care of the baby. A good night's sleep is a thing of past. Her eating and sleeping patterns are completely unpredictable, which the doctor says is normal at this age. She can go 4 hours between a feeding but then want to eat every hour for four hours in a row. We'll have a great night (6 hours of sleep) and then an awful night where she cries all night long. Last night was the latter, and we we concerned something was wrong. Hearing her cry for more than a few minutes stresses me out, especially when I feel like I can't fix for her what is wrong.

She cried enough last night that we were concerned enough to go to the doctor today to have her weight and diaper rash checked. She is doing great and has gained 1.4 pounds since birth! And the crying all night is because she was likely still hungry. The doctor said to just feed her more until she stops complaining.

On top of the new baby responsibilities, I'm also working on some career related stuff that had me out of the house a couple of times this week. So, right now there is no way that I could find time to go to the gym. There's getting ready and driving there on top of actual workout time. While I used to love going to the gym for the social aspect, having a treadmill is at home is great right now. Tonight I even wore my pajamas for my workout as opposed to workout clothes.

It's a far cry from the 9 mile runs I used to be capable of, but hey, I had a baby less than 3 weeks ago. I haven't had a workout comparable to this in probably almost 2 months. And guess what? It felt amazing! Tonight I actually broke a small sweat and felt my heart rate get up there. Even this, which was just walking, helps reduce stress.

Tonight was also Harper's first real bath and first time meeting big brother Jaxson up close and personal. These are the fun parts of parenting so far!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Resuming Exercise Postpartum

When I chose an OB, I specifically looked for a practice that would support lots of exercise during pregnancy. One of the doctors in the practice ran a marathon while pregnant and my OB is a triathlete. The guidance from my doctors all along was simply to listen to my body and stop when something did not feel right or hurt.

I actually stopped most exercise when I was about 7.5 months pregnant because I was having a lot of groin pain, even just walking.

After the birth, my doctors cleared me for walking the day I left the hospital. 2-3 mile walks with the stroller I asked? The answer was yes and I was excited. Since then though, there has not been a single day conducive to a walk outside. It's either been snowing or extremely cold. So, last week we decided to buy a treadmill and it is coming today!

I went to Sports Authority because I wanted to try them out. I immediately liked the nicest model there - the FreeMotion T6.0 - because it has a wider belt and quiet motor.

Turns out it was my lucky day. They offered me the floor model for 30% off - a savings of over $600. We were fine with it being the floor model, but the next day they called and said they had a new one, but would honor the floor model price.

Little things like this give me confidence that 2014 will be a much better year than 2013!

Anyway, everything I have read about resuming exercise postpartum stresses the importance of taking it slow. This is something I am not good at! I'm writing out a plan for the first week of walking, to make sure that I don't over-do it.

Here is my plan:

  • Tuesday - 20 minutes at a pace that feels comfortable/enjoyable, just see where I'm at and enjoy my new playlist
  • Wednesday - 5 minute warm up, 20 minutes at 65% of maximum heart rate (~130), 5 minute cool down, pelvic tilts and light stretching
  • Thursday - walk outside with stroller at comfortable pace! says is supposed to be sunny and 44 degrees. We'll see if that actually comes true.
  • Friday - rest and see how my body is responding to the increased activity
  • Saturday - walk outside again since the weather looks good

Now, the challenge for me is not going to be doing these workouts. It's going to be not doing more than I have outlined here. Too much too fast will just be harmful in the long run, but it's going to be tempting since I haven't really worked out for so long and I'm craving some great workouts.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Baby Harper

Harper was born on 2/1/14 at 41 weeks and 1 day. Her birth weight was 8lbs and 1oz. She has red hair, which was a big surprise to me.

Labor and delivery went better than I imagined it would (I am a pessimist). I was very anxious leading up to the day I went to the hospital for my induction. I guess that's why you should never google medical procedures - you're bound to find the one in a million horror stories. I went to the hospital on a Thursday night and it took about 24 hours for me to go into active labor.

Once I was in active labor though, I had an amazing epidural. I felt no pain, but was able to feel my contractions so I knew when to push. The nurses were so surprised by how fast everything moved after they broke my water, especially since the initial stages of the induction took a while.  Harper arrived 8 hours after they broke my water, with 45 minutes of pushing.

Recovery has been pretty easy so far, and 2 weeks later, I'm ready to start a walking routine for the next few weeks. The hard part is feeding her every 2-3 hours, especially when she takes an hour to eat!

We're in love, but also very tired.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

I'm Back!

No baby yet, although I am officially overdue.

I have been researching ways to start getting back in shape after giving birth and have a list of local classes and resources ready for my reference. I can't wait!

Baby and me Yoga in Watertown:
(Dads welcome!)

Baby and me Yoga and Pilates in Jamaica Plain:

Baby bootcamp in Newton:

Healthworks Mommy & Me in Newton:
Thursdays from 10:30-11:30am

Postnatal yoga - Laughing Dog Yoga in Wellesley, MA:

These classes should be a great way to meet other moms, lose weight, and keep my spirits up!

I won't be able to start any of these classes for 4-8 weeks after the birth, so in the meantime I have prepared healthy freezer meals. We also purchased a nice jogging stroller, and if it's not too cold out I hope we can bundle the baby up and get outside for a few minutes each day.