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Seminary Walks

So, school has started, and with it comes routines, homework, activities, practicing instruments (my middle child is learning guitar this year, hopefully it sounds better than when she was trying violin!), and now this year something new, Seminary. I’ve been dreading my son reaching high school and starting Seminary for 2 years now. The thought of getting up at 5:00 am everyday was so dreadful. But as the start date loomed closer, I started to change my perspective on it. I decided rather than dread it, I should look forward to it and take advantage of being forced to wake up so early. I made the decision to walk while Dylan is in class. Today was my first day of taking him since I worked yesterday. So I took my mp3 player, set it to my Christian playlist full of uplifting, Christ centered music, and I walked. I got in over 5,000 steps. Sometimes I don’t get that many steps in a day (I think I used to rarely get that many before I got my Fitbit and saw how inactive I was)! So I’m kind of excited about what this will hopefully mean for my weight loss. And not only is it good activity for me, but it’s also good spiritual me time. I mean, it’s almost an hour of just walking, listening to spiritual music, and thinking and even praying.

Back before I got pregnant with my youngest I would walk early in the morning before going to work, and honestly that was one of my favorite times of the day. It’s just so peaceful and refreshing to get that time to ponder on things. I’ve really missed it, but lacked the motivation to get back into it. So I’m happy to have a reason for getting up early and not having any excuse to not walk. I think it will quickly turn into my favorite part of the day. I believe everyone needs a little me time. And what better way than getting some exercise along with having time to be spiritual. There’s not a lot to me that’s more spiritual than being outside and admiring the beauty around us while listening to spiritual music and watching the sun rise. I mean, what a way to experience the power of our Heavenly Father! So, that’s how I’m making the most of having to get up early for Seminary. I thought about reading scripture while there, but in reality I’d either fall asleep or end up playing a game to stay awake, so for me, walking is a better choice.

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fitbit

So, haven’t been around much lately. Mostly I just try not to spend much time on the computer so it’s hard to spend what little time I do get on it writing I guess. Anyway, things that have happened since I last posted include personally delivering a baby (first time for me) which was way scary but I guess it’s good to know that I am capable of doing it! The kids went on vacation with their dad and the husband and I got a night alone with no kids (a friend watched Nat for us). That was our first overnight alone since before Nat came along. Was a lot of fun, but we spent way too much money and learned why gambling is bad for you. We both agree that won’t be happening again any time soon, if ever! One of the things I’m most excited about is the new toy that I got. It’s called a fitbit ultra. I love it! It has totally renewed my motivation to lose weight. I’ve already lost over 5 pounds in just a week of having it! Which for me is pretty good. Especially considering that a week later I still feel motivated. It’s not some magic gadget or anything. All it does is track what I do. Then I log in my food and extra activities it might not track and it shows me how many calories I’ve burned and how many I can still eat. It rewards me with badges for accomplishing different things like 5,000 steps and 10 flights of stairs. Basically is kind of like a mini coach telling me what I need to do to burn more calories than I eat. And what really amazes me is how it’s motivated me to clean. Cleaning has actually become fun for me because I get to see how many extra calories I burn by doing it. It helps me to be more active instead of just sit and watch TV all day. Now I try to come up with little tricks to try to get my 10,000 steps in a day. Like sitting the basket of clothes to be folded on an ottoman across the room from the couch, so I have to walk back and forth to fold the clothes and pile them on the couch. Before I would just sit and fold. But no more, now I do extra laundry so I can get a few more steps in! And my house hasn’t been this clean since I moved in. I’ve been sweeping and mopping the floors daily. Before I would do a quick dust mopping on most days. But not any more. And now my floors actually look clean. I love my spray mop thing I got, it’s so easy to use and now I’m like why haven’t I been mopping daily since I got it? My husband and I have started doing Jillian Michaels Body Revolution work outs again too. Part of what I think helps me succeed with the fit bit is how easy it is to track my food. That was one of my downfalls in the past, I would get tired of writing it all down and so I’d just stop tracking. And once I stop tracking, I stop losing. I might think I’m watching what I eat, but I’m really not. Now that I track with this, I can see easily how much work I have to do to burn off those extra calories I eat. For instance, I’m kinda regretting getting a second brownie last night because that meant I didn’t burn enough extra to lose any weight yesterday. I still burned more than I ate, but not enough more to show a loss today. So far I’ve been averaging about half a pound or so each day. Probably the biggest realization I’ve had since using it is how much I used my kids as my slave labor. I’d have them go get Nat’s pj’s, or diapers or whatever. Or throw stuff away for me, just do a bunch of little things to help me. Well, the reality is, it wasn’t helping me do anything but get fat and lazy! So, now I catch myself, and instead of asking them to do something, I try to just do it myself. It was really eye opening to see just how lazy I had become and how much I relied on the kids to help me. Now I have more energy, I feel better about myself, and I feel better about my house. And it’s only been a week! So, I’m really looking forward to seeing where this journey leads and how much better off I’ll be after wards.

Well, I hear Nat banging on her crib, guess I’d better go rescue her. Hope everyone has a great 4th of July!

Weekly Menu 2/27/2012

I’m a little proud of myself this morning. I actually woke up at 7:00 with an alarm (usually we just wait till Nat wakes us up between 8 and 9) and I got up, ate breakfast, then jumped right into Workout 1 of Jillian Michaels Body Revolution. I’m really excited and hopeful about this system. The workout was difficult for me since I’m sooo out of shape, but I got through it and felt great afterwards, well other than my legs feeling like jello, but that’s a good thing right? By the time I was done, Shaun and Nat were awake and starting to get around, so I started in on my chores. With working 2 days in a row last week (hate working 2 12’s in a row!) and then trying to recover over the weekend the house was kind of a mess. Well, not too bad really, but definitely needed a good floor cleaning downstairs. Finished that all up about the time Shaun needed to leave for work. I know he hates it when I clean when he’s home, but it’s so much easier when he’s here to take care of Nat. Plus, then during her nap time I can get a little me time! Which is what I’m doing now, so time to post my menu then fix my lunch and maybe watch a little TV.

Monday 2/27
leftovers

Tuesday 2/28
I work, plus my son has a band concert, so will probably be takeout, but I’ve already decided that it will be subway

Wednesday 2/29
Chicken salad wraps (haven’t made this in a long time and as long as I use low fat items I think it will be a good choice for this week) Calories 250

Thursday 3/1
Enchiladas Calories 300

Friday 3/2
Lettuce Wraps Calories 320

Saturday 3/3
Sweet and Sour Meatballs (I work again, but hubby is off so figured this was easy enough he could throw it in the crock pot for us)

Sunday 3/4
Spaghetti Calories 300 (work day for me and one of the easy things for hubby to fix)

Well, my tummy is growling, time to go fill it with something good for me, hope everyone has a great week!

 

Back in Action

So, I kind of disappeared for a bit there, actually just didn’t feel like spending the time I had on the computer on writing, was too busy looking at ideas for organizing and for Activity Days. Plus, not a whole lot of new stuff going on in these parts. Although at work I have been having some new experiences. I work as a labor and delivery nurse at our local hospital, and as of this month I’ve been doing it for a year. Actually, I think it’s as of this coming week. Hard to believe it’s been a year already! For most of that year, I focused mainly on learning labor and delivery and tried to avoid the whole baby thing. Not that I don’t want to take care of babies, but sick ones or ones that don’t come out crying scare me to pieces at this point! So, the past month or so I’ve been seeking out more opportunities to take care of the babies instead of the laboring moms. I’m feeling a little better about it, but at the same time am very relieved to know that there should always be someone around if I need help. I know that if any of us have a problem any of the other nurses on the floor come running if needed, and that’s a good feeling to have on a unit. Granted, there are nurses that I prefer working with over some of the others, but I think that’s going to happen anywhere. But at the end of the day, each of them that I’ve worked with has been helpful when I’ve asked for it. Everyone says it takes at least a year to feel comfortable working in this specialty. I’m not even sure I’m at a point of really being comfortable yet, but I can at least get some sleep the night before I work now rather than toss and turn all night stressing about what the day will be like, so that’s headed in the right direction I think. And honestly, at this point I can’t imagine doing anything else. I really don’t think seeing a baby being brought into this world is something that could ever get old. For one thing, no two deliveries are the same. Plus, each one is a miracle in my opinion. The whole process amazes me and makes me wonder how anyone can question that there’s a God. For me it is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen and I’m glad that I get to see it as often as I do.

Hmm, well, that train of thought kind of took off on its own…on to other topics now. I have hardly touched the laundry room in regards to organizing it since that first week. I did move a few items from one of my kitchen cabinets to the shelves in the laundry room and had the kids take the things that needed to go out to the storage shed out there. (This spring going through that thing will be quite the chore I’m sure since I haven’t even looked in there since the day we moved in!) Anyway, now I have a little more room in the kitchen for food storage since I don’t have a pantry, which has helped a lot. I was thinking about buying a pantry cabinet with our tax money, but may not need to now, so yay, can spend it on something more fun maybe!

We’re all back to feeling better around here, which is good. Was pretty miserable when I was sick along with little Nat. She has been growing and developing like crazy lately. Seems like she learns a new word everyday! It’s exciting, I really don’t remember much about the older kids when they were this age, other than my son was a wild man and I’m not sure how I survived his toddler years! We video chatted with the in-laws tonight and it was fun having them see her since it had been awhile. I’m sure she’s changed dramatically since the last time we had done that and even more so since we went out there for a visit in August. They’re talking about possibly coming to visit this summer which would be so great. I really hope that they’re able to and that Shaun is able to get the time off.

Well, I’ve finally decided that the time has come for me to get serious about my health and make some real changes. It all starts tomorrow. I ordered Jillian Michaels’ Body Revolution and it came in on Saturday. I thought about starting it then, was actually changed getting ready to weigh myself and take my measurements when my parents called wanting to stop by so I quickly changed back and decided to put off starting it till Monday (tomorrow, gulp). I think that was better because I gave myself permission to eat what I wanted and drink soda and not feel guilty. So, the soda is gone and I’m not going to buy any more. I plan on starting to count calories tomorrow, do my initial weight (went ahead and took my measurements today, and man that was not a fun thing to do, but hopefully will be worth it at the end when I see how far I’ve come), and do the first workout. I looked at the meal plan she included in her system, but honestly I don’t think it is something that I’ll do. I might try some of the recipes, but most of them are things that I wouldn’t touch and I know my kids wouldn’t either. So, my plan is to try to cook more at home and hopefully choose healthy items to cook. I made out my own meal plan for this week, including breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner for each day. Well, except for lunches on days I work, trying to decide if I want to take my lunch, or just eat at the cafeteria. Each day they have a healthy option with the nutritional info listed so I could just go with that, or if it’s something that I won’t eat just eat a salad or something. If I take my lunch then it will just be a microwave meal and those tend to leave me hungry and so then I graze all afternoon. My plan is to stay below 1200 calories a day. That’s what her meal plan seemed to do, have each day be around 1200 so I figure I’ll follow that. I’ll post my menu tomorrow, might even put the calories that I’ve figured with it, at least for the meals I’ve figured out. It’s a bit time consuming, but I think I’ll have more success doing it this way rather than just tracking at the end of the day and discovering that something cost a lot more calories than I thought and then going way over my limit. I’m really hopeful that this will give me the push and motivation to really make some life long changes in my lifestyle. I need to be more active and fit and healthy so that I can be around for my family for a very long time. Wish me luck!