Monday, November 25, 2013

So, this is my problem...

I do not have much of a sweet tooth so not eating sweets is no problem for me.  I love to go for walks, especially since I have a dog now, so exercising is no problem for me.  The problem that I always run into whenever I try to lose weight or get into shape is not knowing HOW to eat healthy, or WHAT to eat.  What are some healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner ideas?  I feel as though every time I attempt to eat something that I think is healthy, some nutritionist expert tells me it is not healthy.  It is very confusing to me.  Any insights on this would be greatly appreciated!  :)

Jess Knox

Sunday, November 24, 2013

I Think I Can... I Know I Can

This week marks the beginning of what, for many, has become a month and a half long celebration. While celebrations are fun and offer a change of pace from the regular day-to-day activities, this time of year has unfortunately turned into a gluttony of food, busy-ness and credit cards with little or no time spent on reflection or simply enjoying the moment. This year, I am determined to have more of the latter.

I know it won't be easy and, at times, I will struggle. The busy-ness will still be there as well as the yummy temptations and family gatherings where everyone else will be enjoying (indulging). But when January comes I want to be filled with happy memories, old and new holiday traditions, a grateful heart, and a healthy body.

While the past three weeks have been hit and miss, something "clicked" in my head a few days ago and I am more committed than ever to take on this challenge. I won't let a moment or hour or day or week of prior poor choices carry over into this next moment. I am choosing to make permanent life-giving changes.

The following is a quote from a blog post I read recently. If you'd like to read the whole post, here is the link:

"The holidays are a time to celebrate, give thanks and, yes, perhaps for some of us, even overindulge a little. It is important to remember, however, that Thanksgiving is just one meal on one day and is not the start of a month–and–a–half long celebration. The occasional indulgence on the occasional holiday (i.e., the actual day & meal itself) will not be damaging to overall health and well–being if healthy eating and exercising take place on a regular consistent daily basis throughout the rest of the year.
"The holidays are also a time to focus on family and friends — not just food. Catching up and sharing laughs with loved ones will allow you to feel the spirit of the holidays more than a second helping of pie. Allow yourself to celebrate, but do so without throwing all caution to the wind or hurting yourself.  And remember, your body is never not watching!"

I know we can do this!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Checking in!

So, I will be honest, week one was pretty difficult for me. I really struggled with the sweets and exercise.  But week two I decided I would just do the full 45 minutes of exercise everyday and get the 7 points, and if I really needed a sweet that day then at least I would have extra points to subtract from! And it worked! Knowing I could have a sweet everyday really helped.  I also got my 9 year old daughter to join in on the challenge with me and being accountable to her really made me step it up. She would remind me to cook a second veggie for dinner and we did a lot of exercise together.  Unfortunately, she doesn't want to do the challenge anymore because we are going out of town for Thanksgiving and she just wants to focus on having fun. I don't blame her - I want to do that too!  I begged her to keep going but it's definitely not worth the argument with her (sheesh, who knew 9 year olds could be SO teenager-ish already?!)   But at least I have you guys to help me along!!

How did everyone else do week 2? Was it easier because you had habits in place? Harder because the newness and excitement is wearing off? Are you traveling for Thanksgiving or having a crowd at your house? We leave Friday for North Carolina and it will be hard to leave my own home where I have my routine in place. But my mom likes to take long walks, so I will try to do that with her everyday and just try to save all my sweets for Thanksgiving Day! Oh, and I am not packing any candy to snack on during the 15 hour drive. I will rely on sunflower seeds and beef jerky to keep me alert! 

Hope to hear from you guys!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Inspirational Quote

I know that this quote was given in the Priesthood session, but I really like it so I wanted to share it:

"Brethren, our destiny is not determined by the number of times we stumble but by the number of times we rise up, dust ourselves off, and move forward."  - President Dieter F. Uchtdorf


1. 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.

2. In 37% of Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger.

3. Even MILD dehydration will slow down one’s metabolism as much as 30%.

4. One glass of water will shut down midnight hunger pangs for almost 100% of the dieters studied in a University of Washington study.

5. Lack of water, the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue.

6. Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of water a day could significantly ease back and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.

7. A mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on the computer screen or on a printed page.

8. Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, plus it can slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Week One. The Good, the Bad...and the Good

I'm not gonna lie. Last week was rough. 9 hours on the road. 6 kids. 8 days. Keeping my brother's house spotless for potential buyers. I'm grateful to be home.

The Good I went walking every day except one. Their backyard leads to a great walking trail, and I got out before the kids were up and moving. I stayed fairly consistent with water, fruits and veggies. And there was very little snacking going on after 8:30.

The Bad My emotional ties to food are VERY strong. Actually, I already knew that but the abundance of Halloween candy and stress of the week really got to me. Result: negative in the sweets category; fortunate not to be in the negative overall. I'd like a do-over... :)

The Good My brother's house sold on my first and only showing. They also found a perfect home in Arizona. Denise made a delicious meal of soup and rolls for my family so they didn't starve while I was gone. Your wonderful comments on this blog kept me going when I wanted to quit. I got back Saturday at 9pm to a clean house and a meal ready for Sunday, thanks to my wonderful husband. And as far as the challenge is concerned, I'm doing better with the sweets, I went walking this morning in below freezing temps even though my body screamed "NO!", and I've already downed 32 ounces of water. Things are looking really, really good.

Totally unrelated...I love Winnie-the-Pooh and here are two of my favorite quotes.

"You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think."

"Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day."

Thursday, November 7, 2013

How to Stop Overeating in Seconds...

In my Paleo research, I came across this article that I found fascinating!

Thought I would pass it along to see if it would help anyone.

How to Stop Overeating in Seconds!

Motivational Quote

Here is a motivational quote to keep us all going through this challenge!  (I am NOT calling anyone a failure!  It's just inspirational to think about!)  :)


"We can learn something from failure and become better and happier as a result.” –President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sweet Kisses

Last night at pack meeting there were refreshments and our boys volunteered to make brownies. Brownies and ice cream are probably my 2 favorite sweets.  I will pass up any Halloween candy and even passed up having syrup on pancakes in order to be able to hold out for brownies. Still last night I managed to serve up brownies to all the cub scouts and their families and managed to not steal even a bite of one.
After we went home I was getting the littlest boys to bed with pj's and goodnight kisses. There was obviously still brownie left on those cheeks and I commented that it was one sweet kiss.
Jason told me if it was that sweet, I would have to cross off one of my three sweets from this week. It was a good one and well worth it

No Calorie Rewards

I had told Heather last week that I was ridding my room of all my hidden treats and it has given me time to reflect why it has been something I have always done. Why is it I see a need to reward myself in secret when I feel I have done a good job? Why is it that a piece of candy brings me some kind of satisfaction that I will probably regret later? What other non weight increasing incentives do I offer myself? I've spent some time thinking about other options this week and have come up with a few things that I do enjoy that feel like rewards without the added calories.
  • 30 minutes of reading my favorite book, 
  • emailing or calling a friend I haven't caught up with in months, 
  • watching an episode of a favorite show,
  • working on a project that I have been hoping to start/finish.
What rewards do you offer yourself that help you get through a difficult task or day?

What Does the Challenge Mean to You?

I was going to reply to Jennifer's question on the original post but then I thought it might be a good stand-alone post as many of you may be wondering the same thing. Here is Jennifer's question:

Is there partial credit? I'm being serious. If I can chug down half the water, do I get half points? Also, it's 5 points for 3 veggies/2 fruits. If I can eat 4 out of 5, do I get 4 points for the day? Just want to clarify and certainly don't want to cheat :)

So what do you think, ladies?

It has been interesting to watch this blog come to life the past few days. So many ideas, so many comments, lots of support, successes and concerns. And while I started this challenge with the purpose of moving toward a healthier body, I'm beginning to realize that it goes a little further than that -- at least for me.

As I've read your comments, it seems like most of us have struggled with these choices for a lot longer than we would care to admit. So first I want to say how good it is to know I'm not alone. And while I know I will always struggle with these choices, this time feels a little different. My motivation feels stronger, simply because I know I'm not alone.

After 8 weeks I don't want to say, "Whew! I'm glad that's over!" Instead, I want this to be the beginning of something permanent. And I sense that many of you feel the same way.

So is keeping track of credits earned important? Yes. Does it add a sense of competition and motivation to do well? Yes. But in the end I don't believe that a bunch of points recorded on a tracking sheet is what will be remembered. How you decide to keep track is up to you.

There will be a recognized "winner" at our Challenge Celebration in January -- and I plan to be right at the top of the list. But when this is "over," the takeaway for me will be a greater understanding of who I am and gratitude for 24 women with whom I never knew I had so much in common.

Another favorite Anne quote that sums up my feelings about the next 8 weeks : "I've done my best, and I begin to understand what is meant by 'the joy of strife'. Next to trying and winning, the best thing is trying and failing."

I would just add, ..."and getting up and trying again."


Hello Ladies!

So this challenge is coming at a very good time for me! I've been transitioning my eating habits for a few years now and this started in the day I was going to give up the foods that cause me the most trouble and try out the Paleo diet, which is only met, veggies, fruit, nuts, seeds and healthy fats. No sugar, grains, legumes or dairy.

I will freely admit that I am a sugar addict!! My body and brain feels that I have to have sugar every single day. Is this true? Of course not! Same thing goes with processed or unprocessed carbs or grains. They do absolutely nothing for me but gain weight, feel sluggish and sap energy. Don't need, and have now finally gotten to the point, that I don't want them anymore either.

 I'm now on day three of my new eating lifestyle, not calling it a diet as I plan to eat this way for the rest of my life. I was snarling yesterday from sugar detox, that resulted in a bad headache and irritation with everything. But today, I'm feeling much better. I'm looking forward to continuing along on this path and curious as to the results.

The plan is to eat the diet strictly for 30 days to eliminate all the toxins from those foods from your body. Once the time is up, you can reintroduce them one at a time, much like testing foods on babies, to see what affects your body. The foods that have been eliminated have been know to cause all kinds of problems. But everybody's body isn't the same so for some, dairy might be just fine, while for others it's not. We'll see.

This will mean that I won't get to eat bead and my heavenly home made stuffing that I look forward to every year, this year. But I'm okay with that. There's been Halloween candy all over the house and while I do still want it and sometimes will salivate when I see it, I have control enough to not reach for it.

Which is also something that I'm trying hard to do in my life. Get control. I figure, if I can control my food, I can control a lot of things in my life, like my finances and weaknesses...or at least begin to. One step at a time, right?

Now, I am seriously lazy when it comes to exercise. Currently, I don't. At all. It's pretty pathetic really. I think I need a work out buddy, but that's been hard to find. I once had the self-motivation to get up every morning at 5:30 to swim, but the place doesn't offer early morning lap swim anymore, which is sad. And with seminary and I start work at 7, the only time I have is at 5:30am. Doable as I've done it before, but not enough motivation. I was working out with some friends in Bear Creek and was in the best shape of my life, and then they moved and I tanked and put back on the 15 pounds I had lost. So sad.

Well, this is way too long. I'll wrap it up. I'm happy to be in this and look forward to the comments and support!

We've got this, ladies!!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Cold Killer

I woke up super sick yesterday, a really yucky cold.  bleh!  But I will not be overcome by congestion!! ;-)

I didn't want sickness to prevent me from getting my credits.

For anyone who is wondering , this is what I do to kick colds to the curb:

Large Ginger 2
Ginger Lemon Cold Killer 

* 3 lemons, quaterted
* 6 inches ginger root cut in inch-size pieces

1. Run the lemons and ginger through a juicer.

2. Use 1 T. of the liquid/1 cup of the hottest water you can drink.  (I use filtered water) (Store the extra liquid in the fridge.)

3. Add enough honey to make it delicious.

This really cuts through mucus and I hate mucus (sorry to say the "m" word).

It's a good idea to drink copious amounts of the tea. Yesterday I drank 2 quarts of this tea.

WARNING: it's VERY strong, so DO NOT drink it with out adding water!!!!

It's cleansing and energizing, which is a little confusing when you are sick. . . "I feel good, but I feel so yucky!" See?  Confusing.

MY Biggest Challenge

There's a lot of talk on here about what your biggest challenge will be. Sweets seem to top the list! (I have a terrible sweet tooth.) Finding the time to do a bit of a workout is tough. (Work all day, chase kids all night, pass out. That's my day.) Not snacking after 8:30 is hard!!

But really, all of these weaknesses pale in comparison to my biggest challenge: Myself.

I am so easily discouraged. I have a hard time finding the motivation to keep going when I'm not seeing results right away. I get overwhelmed at the smallest roadblock. I see other people being awesome and I think to myself, "why can't I just get it together??" When I step on the scale and see I've gained another pound, my entire day is ruined.

I'm so glad to be a part of this fitness challenge so I can have the support I need to get back on the right track physically. Mostly I'm hoping that at the end of this 8 weeks I'll have more control over not only my health, but my mind as well.

Monday, November 4, 2013

I'm excited to get started on our fitness challenge! Like Heather, this morning when I woke up at 5, it helped to know that I wasn't alone! The hardest part for me is definitely going to be the sweets; I'm sure most of you have the same problem! It didn't help that today was Wes's birthday ... so I gave myself a little breathing room today with the food, exercised a little more than normal, and I'm promising myself that I'll do better tomorrow! We can do this!! :)

Sweets substitute?!?!

The hardest part of this challenge is definitely going to be the 3-sweets-a-week deal.  I'm not alone, right?!  Let's be real, it's asking a lot to limit myself to 3 sweets a day.  Ugh...this was almost a deal-breaker for me, but luckily Tina convinced me otherwise.  So while I put all that yummy Halloween booty out of sight (but not yet out of mind), I'm wondering if any of you have good ideas about feeding my sweet tooth (ahem, sweet teeth) in between those 3 treats.  Ideas???  This is all I've come up with on my own, so please add to this list!! 

- yogurt (if you're a lemon fan like me, try "muller, fruit up, luscious lemon"'s very dessert-esque!)
- 100% fruit juice
- whatever fruit has the most natural sugar

(I love that there is no calorie counting in this challenge!) 

Thanks, in advance!


First Thoughts

Okay -- be honest. What was your first thought when you woke up this morning and remembered about our challenge? My first thought was, "Ugh! It looks so cold outside."

While I'm at my brother's home, I've decided that if exercise is going to happen it has to happen in the morning before the day gets crazy. When I left for my walk it was 42 but felt like 35 with the wind. On the bright side, I walked a lot faster than I usually do.

I've been drinking more water the past few days and have learned that I better be near a bathroom about 30 minutes later or I'll be sorry. Then I made the mistake of drinking 16oz before I left on my walk. If the wind didn't make me walk faster, the water definitely did. Any tips from you regular water drinkers? Does your body eventually get better at using the extra water rather than just flowing right through you? :)

I think sweets will be the hardest part of the challenge for me. I tend to be an all-or-nothing person. When I eat sweets, I can't seem to stop at just one. So knowing that I can enjoy 3 makes me a little nervous. Will I be able to stop? Should I just ban them all together? Will that only make it worse? Which category will be your greatest challenge?

Here's hoping for a great first day...with many more to come! Even as the cold wind was blowing this morning, the thought that I wasn't alone made it bearable.