Setting Goals

2016 is more than half over. I haven’t achieved much in respect to physical improvements. I’ve run 58 miles this year and I’ve gained 20#. I have had little to no motivation. But that ends here today. Ok, I’ve made this claim repeatedly but I have set my sights on running Columbus again next fall, it will be our 10th anniversary weekend away, we are budgeting now so we don’t have to stress about it. 

The ultimate goal is to finish in 5:30 or less. I know if I put my mind to it, follow my plan, I know this is doable.

Nana also said, “Yard by yard life is hard, but inch by inch life is a sinch.”  So here goes:

Marathon planning Inch by Inch:

8/21/16: Today begings focus on water. I need to drink 110 oz of water a day. For the next seven days that is what I will concentrate on. Run 2 miles a day.

8/28/16: Menu planning and actually sticking to that menu planning. Clean healthy meals 6 days a week with one indulgence a week. Run 2 miles a day. Drink 110 oz water a day.  

September: running goal 50 miles for the month

9/4/16: Continue meal planning, 110 oz water daily, resume half training plan running a min of 2 miles a day 5-6 days a Eeek 

9/11/16: Meal planning, water consumption, running plan – reward self with a hot yoga class this week! 

I’m trying shorter goals. Saying I want to lose 50# is a great goal, but thats a huge goal, its an endurance goal and for now I need a sprint goal, something I can realistically do in a short amountn of time that is beneficial, can be added to, and isnt overwhelming. 

Weigh in days will be Mondays and I will try really hard to not be a daily scale fanatic. 

Whole 30: Week 1

 Week 1 was mostly successful! I followed the plan to the letter until Saturday night when we had pizza, I was tired, didn’t feel like cooking and the girls wanted pizza, and did I ever pay for it. My stomach yelled at me for hours, that in itself was a sign that I was doing things correctly. Sunday I was full of motivation after my best 8 mile run ever to make not one but two new recipies! Buffalo Chicken Soup and Orange Chicken with Coconut Cauliflower Rice; I cut, chopped, measured and waited. When the time came to taste, the warm spoon touched my lips and my word they were both awful and when I say that I mean Scott who eats anything couldn’t figure out a way to make them edible. Lesson learned – dont count your chicken recipies before they hatch, my whole week of chicken went in the trash. With no backup plan, because who would have thought both would be inedible, we had pancakes. It was fun and the girls loved the process and adding fruit made them feel like chefs.

How this could have turbed out…I have spent my whole life “dieting” I have learned that a lifestyle change includes accepting the fact that real life happens, recipies fail, impromptu dinners with family or the occasional date night, happen. The perspective to take in those instances is to make the best choice possible and not make yourself miserable. Summer 2003 Weight Watchers was MY LIFE my then husband and I went to a cookout at a friends house. I was so focused on staying “on plan” that I ended up alienating myself from everyone to inhale the cheeseburger I swore I wouldn’t eat because I didn’tknow anything   about it; when no one was watching, the feeling of ostrasizing myself led me to feel depressed and I fed it. Today I would have made the choice to enjoy the hamburger and whatever side I brought that I knew was me friendly and enjoyed the party instead of the self-sabotage I applied in the past. 

Was I 100% successful? No.

Did I make significant progress? YES!

Measurements will be taken again day 30, weight I will check in sporadically. 7 days into the program I am down   6#’s. 

I have officially eliminated soft drinks. I planned most of the and shopped better after the experience of the first week. Recipies, hummm there are so many out there but I will be sticking to only one new adventure per week entree wise. Breakfast and lunch remain eggs, protein and salad greens, fruit and nuts/seeds. I am not missing dairy or added fat (butter). 

My heavy leg theory: I feel like my legs are better when I run. I am not dreading it, when I start this last week I have run every mile I planned. Sunday morning when I finshed my 8 I was stunned to see 1:35.03 that is my best by 3 minutes and my previous 8 this year was 1:47 that is HUGE!!!! I have a lot more confidence in my ability to complete Columbus in the goal I set for myself

Mood & Food update coming tomorrow!!

Adventures into the Whole30 Lifestyle

I love healthy foods and I am great at getting on a kick for a while, I see and feel progress and let myself “cheat” but my “cheats” are more than a slice of cake on my birthday or a special dinner out (which never happens); it’s days long of crap in, no wonder why I feel like crap when all I feed myself is garbage.

Food is my best friend and worst enemy. I am certain there are millions of people old and young who have that same relationship with food. It temporarily fixes what I feel or don’t feel . The last few months I have really struggled, I looked at my running record and I should be in the neighborhood of 200-300 miles by this time in the year and I am at less than 150. My weight has been steady but I attribute that to running just enough and balancing the crap just right. But I see it and feel it. I am flabbier than usual and feel physically terrible. Mentally, thank goodness I am thrilled to report I feel better than I have in a very long time and am (CHEER) anti-depressant free!!! My legs have felt heavy and I am so thirsty when I run, despite dropping water on my routes I can’t get enough, then feel sluggish. So I looked into heavy legs and running – ah-ha!!! Dehydration and a mineral deficiency are probable culprits.

How to remedy this?

I have seen countless friends post their self challenge of the Whole30.  There is no gimmick, no group to join (unless you want to), no pills, powders, supplements, shakes . It’s food. Real food, as minimally processed as possible, and NO SUGAR. That is the killer, label nazi is the title to bear. Scouring everything to make sure there is none, no pop, candy, juice-drinks, beer (sadface). Meat, veggies, fruits, healthy oils and portion control. So why not try it. The two people I know closely who have done this have experienced weight loss (already active people who changed their relationship with food), and I noticed their skin – glowing and not in that pregnant glow way. How can I not try this? It’s 30 days.

Day 1 measurements: (7/20/2015)

Hips 42.5″

Arms 15″

Chest 42″

Waist 36.75″

Calf 18.75″

Thigh 25″

Weight 212.6 (this made me way unhappy)

The goal is to detox from sugar, and reestablish healthy eating habits as far as content and portions, the site provides an excellent shopping list which I just printed and added my other items to. Pinterest is full of Whole30 food porn, I have pinned dozens of meals I am eager to try. This first week I am keeping it simple, things I know that I enjoy and are easily prepared. I can only look forward with optimism that this will boost me into a new stage in my relationship with food and one that I can stick to for a long time.

Day One Mood and Food:

MOOD: After the sad scale news I was ok, my attitude positive as I had planned to not let myself fail on this first day. I did have a headache that raged most of the day which I attribute to no caffeine or sugar at all. Exercise wise it was a rest day, but I did do about an hour of yard work. I did sleep rather well, better than I have in a while. So as this experiment goes on we shall see how I feel.


Breakfast 1.5 scrambled eggs, a few slices of steak, asparagus

10 am snack: nectarine

Lunch: was a fail – I had a salad and had purchased a dressing that was within the guidelines and it tasted of bitter water, so I added some cashews and ate what I could.

2 pm snack: 2 oz tuna

Dinner: 5 oz pot roast (very lean) roasted root veggies, roasted in chicken broth, topped with a little black pepper and a pinch of salt, steamed broccoli

Dessert: banana (I was hungry and banana’s give me heartburn but that with water gave me the full feeling I wanted)

Water intake:88 oz + 24 oz seltzer water (I crave bubbles)

Zucchini Pizza

I love pizza. Every gooey, cheesy, thick crusted bite of fatty deliciousness, really – who doesn’t? It’s one of our goto dinners, especially with our commute and not getting home most evenings until 6 or later, it makes meal prep the last thing I want to do. Plus, everyone will eat pizza without any fuss. Now pizza and weight loss rarely go in hand – every food plan will say indulge occasionally with a slice of pizza. Who eats one slice? Let’s be realistic it’s more like 3-4, I honestly just like cheese but as a compromise we usually get some kind of meat and a veggie. I know I can add a salad and make it healthier, but it’s pizza. So in an effort to make pizza healthier I looked for some alternatives and last night I made this: Zucchini Crust pizza. The prep was super easy – I shredded 4 small zucchini in my food processor in the morning and let it drain in strainer bowl (Pampered Chef nested colander and bowl set FTW). The mixed it with one large egg, 1/2 cup shaved Parmesan cheese and 1 cup grated mozzarella. The sauce is just a tomato sauce.  I decided to keep it simple this first time (in case it wasn’t so great we didn’t waste a bunch of toppings).  The crust I baked for about 30 minutes until it was golden at the edges, then we added the toppings.

The proof was in the taste test, it was very good and with some toppings it would be a very satisfying dinner, I am thinking chicken, basil and mushrooms. 50% of my children asked me to make it again and the other 50% asked for skeby-o’s with meatballs. I call it a win.



Zucchini Crust pizza


How Does Our Garden Grow?

As a child we ALWAYS had a vegetable garden, a rather large one in my opinion. My parents would plant tomatoes,

On planting day!

On planting day!

cucumbers, peppers (bell and jalapeno), green beans, strawberries (that never really did well), pumpkins, squash and I am sure there were some experimental items throughout the years that I am forgetting. My sister and I loved it, picking tomatoes from the garden while we played, selling the abundance of cucumbers to the parents at band camp next to our home, the dinners of just corn on the cob, tomatoes and cucumbers.  I have many fond memories that center around that spring ritual, my parents still at the least get tomatoes in the ground.

Eleven years ago I purchased my home, and promised myself I would have a garden. The benefits are numerous, the plants aren’t expensive, seeds even less, the return financially has to be 1000% (math is not my strength but you get the idea). In that eleven years I have had exactly 2 tomato plants and both died on me before they produced anything. Somehow the spring turns into summer so quickly and I realize that I have once again missed the planting window. This year however I decided it didn’t matter, summer seems to be lasting a little longer now. Two weekends ago when I was buying mulch I could smell the tomato plants at Home Depot, and just my luck they were on sale! I quickly snatched up tomatoes (big boys and cherry),  cucumbers (burpless, who knew?), zucchini and yellow squash. I had at home already pumpkin seeds from last Halloween, provided by mom.

My girls were so excited to learn that we would have a garden this summer ~ I think mostly their excitement was the watering can, but that’s part of the responsibility of a garden. I selected this back corner of the yard hoping that the dog wouldn’t trample it.  Our soil is less than desirable, it’s mostly clay and full of rocks, I have lost over the years countless annuals to the point that I no longer waste money on them; however for this I dug as deep as I could and mixed in some top soil, placing each plant in scooping the rich dirt around and though  my dad always used cut grass, I mulched it; fingers crossed this helps keep the moisture in between waterings.

As of yesterday, the plants that my dog haven’t trampled are doing well! The squash is hanging on by a thread, I hope my neighbors like that new dog they decided to get without asking me (they stand in that corner and bark at each other all day).  Last night I decided to put our old table as protection over it until this weekend when I can come up with a better solution. The pumpkins are about 2″-3″ tall already and I am certain should they produce I will be able to outfit most of my neighbors with them for fall. The marigolds are beginning to sprout (rabbit deterrent).

Every morning before work I walk out there and give them a good drink, and again in the evening when I get home. I love the aroma of tomato foliage, I lean in to smell it every time I water. The girls are enjoying seeing the seeds sprout and ask where are the vegetables? Patience my little’s patience.



Adventures into Clean Eating

What is clean eating?



 You’ve heard it in the news and magazines but what is it really?

Essentially it’s eating foods that had a mother or came from nature, in it’s simplest, least processed form. 

It does involve some planning, however anyone who is actively trying to lose weight, be healthy, save money or all of the above already devotes some time daily toward meal-planning and shopping lists.

The guidelines are fairly simple after reading several popular blogs/websites this is what I have learned:

1) eat non processed foods (skip the boxed foods)

2) eat 6 small meals a day, this keeps our body from feeling hungry, lessening the urge to binge, and encouraging our metabolism to keep running

3) no soda or alcohol (ok I can give up the soda, but my occasional beer will have to stay – moderation in all things)

4) no skipping meals, especially breakfast – I am very guilty of this

5) avoid saturated and trans fats, hydrogenated oils and high fructose corn syrup

6) eat fresh fruits and vegetables

After making this list I thought about my shopping trip this past Saturday, I had not made the intentional commitment to trying this until it was discussed Sunday but my cart contained the following:

watermelon, cantaloupe, blackberries, strawberries, peaches, nectarines, bananas, clementines, grapes, potatoes, kale, zucchini, squash, onions, cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes,  chicken, eggs, milk, yogurt, cheese, whole grain bread, brown rice, Kashi cereal (kids love it too), oats

Then all the other stuff we needed…. so I pretty much already shop smart, its just a few other little changes that I will implement over time.

My thought here is multi-fold:

– my weight loss has been slow, steady but slow perhaps this little change will give me a boost

– my health and the health of my family, the freshness can be nothing but good for us all

– my budget will be what suffers, for anyone knows eating well is expensive – a garden next summer is a MUST

– we already are somewhat committed to this just by my participation in Weight Watchers, the points system allows you to eat anything but suggests healthier alternatives when possible

– I love learning something new and trying new things, so here is a great opportunity to do just that


So on this new adventure we go!



Celebrate Eating Well

This is the handout that we were given at the challenge on Wednesday to record our current eating habits.

I realize it’s a little difficult to read but I would be more than happy to e-mail it to anyone if you would like  to look it over ~ it’s very comprehensive and allows you evaluate how you are eating and where you could make better choices if you wanted to!



Keeping in mind that diets are short term, when you want to drop a few pounds before vacation or maybe a wedding or reunion, they have value, but for me and my relationship with food it’s a lifestyle commitment.


This includes being realistic about the things I choose daily, most days I am all column C, and now and then I dip into A and B.


When a splurge is planned:

 When I  know that a party or night out is coming,  I try to be a little more conscious about the rest of my week, so when that event has arrived I am prepared to let myself have an indulgence – be it french fries or birthday cake (this is where I am a fan of cupcakes, pre-portioned party fun!) No more are the days where I mentally beat myself up before an event struggling with how I will behave.


What about when something comes up and I am faced with an impromptu meal out or at a friend’s house?

There is always a better option, the choices may not be the greatest but there are ways to eat anywhere.

Dining out: I try to choose grilled or baked anything. I ask for dressing on the omit cheese or bacon (I let myself have one or the other not both), split an entree, ask for the lunch portion, ask for a to go box brought to the table when the meal is brought and immediately put half or more into it for the next day, I don’t go out much but my girls and I eat pretty similarly so often I can get one adult entree and the three of us share it, this goes for desserts as well.


At Someone Else’s Home: Momma said never go to someones home empty handed – Olive Garden has the best salad to go, it comes with bread (you can get unbuttered) a bottle of dressing, in a nice bowl serving spoons – who doesn’t love their salad? That then becomes the bulk of my plate only adding things they have prepared to it minimally; if it’s a good friend they may know that you are trying to eat smart and offer to prepare your protein or side without oils or butter, better yet they may let you help in the cooking!

(my mom and mother in law both are helpful with this).


The best defense here is to have a game plan, to stick to it, to enjoy yourself and move on.


Celebrate eating well!!!





Swappertunity: Flat Out

My family loves pizza, c’mon who doesn’t right? It’s cheesy, greasy, deliciousness. It’s also an expensive treat both to the wallet and the daily goal of eating sensibly; and I don’t know many adults that say, “Wow that one slice of cheese pizza on super thin crust was amazingly filling!” It’s more like 2-3 slices of that deep dish with extra cheese and toppings, along with a beer or three. So in this new adventure how do I get pizza that doesn’t leave me feeling guilty, gross -or- starving.


The super yummy goodness on my grill above was dinner last night. Mine is the one in the back, it has 1tsp of olive oil, fresh sliced tomatoes, spinach and 1/4 cup of mozzarella cheese (I wanted fresh but this was a totally impromptu dinner) – it’s 4PP. It was delicious! The front two are Scott’s he also had 1tsp of olive oil on the flat-out, sauteed mushrooms, peppers, garlic, spinach and cheese, his are 6PP since he used a little more oil in the sautee. We both felt full and Ailey asked why she didn’t get pizza for dinner!


I call it a successful meal and can’t wait to explore more with this!


Follow Progress not Perfection on
Follow Progress not Perfection on