Thursday, October 24, 2013

Thursday NSVs

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It's been awhile since I joined the NSV linkup, so I'm happy to share some big non-scale milestones and moments from the past few weeks!

  • I made myself work out when I was sick. Old Carolyn most certainly would've used last week's minor cold as a good excuse to take a day (or five) off from working out, but not anymore. I ran Wednesday and Thursday.
  • I bought a pair of pants in a SIZE FREAKING 8. I honestly don't remember the last time I bought a size 8... freshman year of high school? Maybe? They're a little snug, but I'd rather they fit me 5lbs from now than get saggy butt syndrome by then.
BONUS: I almost bought these bad boys full price a few weeks ago in
a size 10, now I got the size 8 AND they were half off! Patience, FTW.
  • I'm 73.3% of the woman I once was. This is amusing to me.
  • My claddaugh ring is almost officially too big. I wore it on my left ring finger until July, because that's the finger I had worn it on since I got it for my 13th birthday, and the only finger it semi-comfortably fit on (and my finger was comically small where I wore the ring, but fatter above). Since then, I've switched it to my right ring finger, and it's nearly too big. I cant easily slide it on and off, especially when it's cold. I was wearing a 9 ring at my highest weight, and this is a 7 and needs to be resized!
  • Despite putting it off all weekend, I was able to make myself run 9 miles last Sunday. This distance has been daunting, because I haven't run that far since the half marathon. I'm glad I did it, and faster than I expected to! Here's hoping I can even surprise myself a little on race day next weekend.
  • I officially surpassed the 500 mile mark for running this year! I don't think I ran 500 miles in my until life put together before this year, and I still have over 2 months left to rack up some more mileage.
What NSVs are you celebrating this week?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Weighty Issues

Weigh In Wedneday

Last Week's Weight: 171.4 
Current Weight: 167.0
Change: -4.4
Total Loss: 61

I obviously didn't blog last week's weight because I was really busy being a terrible blogger all week, not to mention annoyed at the 2ish pound gain thanks to horrendous eating in North Carolina and the wonders of being a woman.

HANYWAY, I'm baaaaaaaaaack and down 4.4lbs this week, which brings me to a new lowest weight of 167lbs! At the risk of jinxing myself, I think I may have finally kicked that stupid plateau that kept me in 172-177 range for roughly 3 months. I've lost weight in 5 of the last 6 weeks, which puts me back on track and within 17lbs of goal weight!

I also wanted to say thanks to everyone for your sweet words on yesterday's post. I'm glad I was able to strike a chord with so many of you, and that we're on the same page with choosing our OWN goals and celebrating our individuals victories. Mission accomplished!

How was your weigh-in Wednesday?

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

A Transformation Tuesday Revelation

We need to talk about something serious, so apologies for the minor departure from my usual light-heartedness.

I had a mini-revelation this weekend when talking with a friend of a friend who's also lost a pretty significant amount of weight. We were talking about how weird things can happen to your mind when you lose a lot of weight-- a lot of people have a hard time mentally adjusting to match their new physical appearance, others develop obsessively healthy habits (to a dangerous point), and some are completely well-adjusted-- not as if they had never been overweight, but as if their high weight didn't cause them the issues that many overweight people face (low self-esteem, binge eating, etc.).

In the past year or so, I've read a LOT of stories of women who were motivated to make a major lifestyle change, and to finally carry the excess pounds that caused them so many problems, physically and emotionally. I sometimes find it hard to identify with the starting point of others because I didn't lose weight because I was fed up with years of being completely uncomfortable in my skin. My weight loss wasn't provoked by an experience of leaving the fitting room in tears. I was never told by a medical professional that I was in danger of contracting diabetes or heart disease later on (though my doctor did suggest I try Weight Watchers).

If anything, it scares me that my decision to change my habits wasn't some huge life-altering moment of empowerment to "take back my life." In a way, I fear that not having that rock bottom moment could give me a sense of complacency, at a point where I don't necessarily want to be complacent with my progress.

The real revelation, though, was how it makes me uncomfortable when people make comments about me pre-weight loss like "Wow, you really were pretty huge." Or "Yeah, I mean I had noticed that you had gotten really big."

Me at my highest weight, last October: 228lbs

I realize that a lot of women find motivation in talking like that, or remembering their "fatty days," but you'll rarely hear me refer to my pre-weight loss days/self like that because I actually had good self-esteem at my highest weight.

I didn't feel ugly or uncomfortable at my largest weight. Mostly, I felt sad when I saw a picture of me looking so happy, when I knew I was doing myself a disservice with such bad health choices. I knew I could do better for myself, but my turning point was the moment when I actually decided that I wanted to to better for myself and that I would make some serious changes.

This isn't a journey to fit into a size 4, or one that ends with weighing the same as what I weighed in high school. It's not about hitting a certain BMI or about fitting back into an old sexy dress. Of course these are milestones to celebrate! But, to me at least, they aren't the be-all-end-all.

Ultimately, for me, it's about being happy, confident, and fit. Three qualities that I possessed at my highest weight (in varying degrees) 11 months ago, and three qualities that I'm happy to say I possess ten-fold today.


I think the weight loss blogging community can sometimes put undue pressure on others. But just because someone else's starting point is your end goal, doesn't make your journey any less powerful. I really and truly love this community, but I think there's a point at which we all need to realize that our journeys are our own, and as such, they should be measured by our own standards. My hope is that others who are going through a similar journey can reach an end point marked by what matters to them, and one that will provide more lasting happiness than reaching for a number or for someone else's goals.

Have you experienced any weight loss revelations?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Feelin' Groovy

Apologies for last week's radio silence! It's been a crazy few weeks at work and in life, so I just needed a week to recalibrate.

First of all, a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS shout out is in order to my fabulous link-up co-host, Amy, who just completed her first half marathon!! What a woman! AND she completed those 13.1 miles on the beastly hills of San Francisco, no less. Seriously, go congratulate her because she makes me feel like a sissy girl for complaining about the only hill of the Chicago Half which was a freeway on/off ramp.









It's been far too long! Here are my goals for the week:

1) Track Everything. I didn't think I would need to make this a goal, but I became a lazy mclazerson last week and glazed over 3 days of WW tracking (I did still track on MFP though!). Is this a sign that WW's days are numbered? Time will tell.

2) Make my Physical Appointment. Is it weird that I'm actually excited to go see my doctor? At my last physical I weighed in at 228lbs. During my appointment last November, my doctor suggested Weight Watchers, and two weeks later, I finally took the plunge. I can't wait to show her my progress!

3) Sleep Schedule. I had a minor cold last week, so thanks to the magic of Nyquil, my sleep schedule was gloriously messy. The goal this week is to get back to normal: 11pm bedtime on the nights before morning runs (Mon, Tue, Wed night), and midnight on my non-run nights (Sun/Thurs). 

4) Running. I have a 15K in two weeks, soooo I'm slightly nervous about that considering I've not run that distance (9.3 miles) since my half marathon in early September. Luckily I got a 9-miler under my belt yesterday, which has somewhat assuaged my nerves. But I want to tackle this 15K feeling strong, which means pushing for this week before I semi-taper next week. The plan is 4, 5, 3, 9 or 10, 3 miles, for total mileage of 24-25 miles. I've also been experimenting with running fartleks, which I think is actually helping my speed! If anyone has a more regimented speed-training program, I'd love to hear about it.

What are your goals this week?


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Quickie


Weigh In Wedneday


Today's post is gonna be a quickie:

Last Week's Weight: 170.4 
Current Weight: 169.6
Change: -0.8
Total Loss: 58.4


I am over the moon to finally (FINALLY!) hit the 160's... a weight decade I haven't seen in, oh, nearly a decade. And while the 60lbs lost mark is still 1.6lbs away, I officially have less than 20lbs left to hit my goal. I did some math yesterday and realized that I'm roughly 73% of the woman I once was, haha.

Apologies for double-spamming you with transformation pics, but I've gotta share this one. I ran my first ever 5K exactly a year ago, and the difference between then and now is a transformation of myself that I never thought possible. 


Then: 

  • "Running" on a regular basis (mayyyybe twice a week)
  • Struggling to run a half a mile without stopping
  • Running a 38 minute 5K
  • Squeezing myself into size 16 jeans

Now:

  • Enjoying my running habit (4-5x a week)
  • Regularly clocking long runs of 6+ miles
  • Running a <29 minute 5K
  • Comfortably wearing a size 10

I never imagined I'd be overweight forever, but I also never imagined I could feel as good as I do now. 

What a difference a year makes.


Before starting your weight loss journey, did you know what you were capable of?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Transformation Tuesday + Colgate Slimsoft Review

Just discovered an old gem on my phone, taken almost exactly a year ago when some friends and I won tickets to see a Bears game. It's funny, because I was wearing the t-shirt last week when I suddenly realized how big the shirt is. Oddly enough, there was a picture taken of me in almost the exact same pose last weekend.

Behold, #TransformationTuesday:

September 2012 vs. October 2013. Nearly 60lbs down.
It kinda looks like someone smushed the left picture because everything is the same. Just... wider.

On a completely unrelated note, I signed up for Influenster a few months back, which is basically a platform for bloggers and influencers to test out new products and brands. I've seen many of my favorite bloggers participate in Influenster, so, naturally, I was curious to hop on the bandwagon myself.


I was recently chosen to receive my first VoxBox, which contained Colgate's new SlimSoft Toothbrush.  Admittedly, I was a little skeptical about a "scientifically advanced toothbrush" because, well, it's a toothbrush. How advanced could it be?



After giving the ole' pearly whites a brush, though, there was definitely a noticeable difference between the SlimSoft and my old toothbrush. The SlimSoft has 17x slimmer bristles, which are meant to get a deeper reach between teeth and gums. As someone who has sensitive gums and is prone to cavities, I could feel the SlimSoft "hugging" my teeth more than my old toothbrush, but at the same time not irritating my gums. Definitely a better brush than my old one! You have convinced me, Colgate.


Speaking of teeth, anyone ever try those at-home Pinterest remedies for teeth whitening? I'm always on the lookout for worthwhile pins to try, especially if it means saving myself some $$ as compared to drug store alternatives.

How do you keep your million dollar smile lookin' good?




I received a complimentary Colgate SlimSoft from Influenster, however my opinions (including my decision to write this review) are my own.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Monday Funday

Welp, today was a day. 

Guess who did NOT want to run this morning?
Luckily, after a long day at work, I had enough time to treat myself to a manicure-- something I almost never do. That, followed by plans with an old high school friend to grab burgers at one of my favorite places in town, was exactly what I needed.



All this to say, ah, Monday, you almost won. But you didn't.

Anyway, to the task at hand:











So, last week's plan was this:

1) Running Plan: 18-20 miles. Guess who knocked out a full 20 miles? This girl! After my Saturday morning 7-miler got derailed because I, uh, went out on Friday night, I was determined to get it in on Sunday. So I spent all day Sunday prepping by laying on my bed getting lost in Breaking Bad (omgahhh so good!). Finally, I pried myself out of bed around 5pm and managed to knock out an 8-miler.

I haven't run more than a 10K since the half marathon, so I was actually really excited with how good I felt throughout the run. Let's be real, I was mostly excited that I brought a small bag of swedish fish for fuel because YOLO (actually I read on another blog that swedish fish make halfway decent fuel). Anyway, imagine my surprise when I realized that I shaved almost 6 minutes off my last 8-miler, which was the week before my half. I'll more than take it!

2) Healthy Eats. Uh, I did eat half a large pizza on Sunday night. Other than that, though, I was pretty good all week. 

On to the next! Here's my gameplan for this week:

1) Finish Breaking Bad. I mean, totally goal-worthy, amiright? I'm watching the second last episode as we speak. But then what will I do with my life?! What should I watch next?

2) Run 18 miles. I'm headed to NC at the end of the week to go wedding dress shopping with my best friend from high school (!!!!!), so I'm not incredibly optimistic about working out next weekend. However, I'll be happy with 18 miles before then. Already down 3 today, so I'm on track. 

3) Stay on Track. A weekend away doesn't have to mean a FULL weekend of indulgences. Pick and choose, and make good decisions otherwise. That's the plan.

I'm sososo close to the 160's and to 60lbs lost, and I don't want the fact that I'm getting close to derail my progress. I'm extremely happy with how far I've come, but I'm not done yet!

What are your goals for the week? Don't forget to link up with Amy (Diary of a Fat Mommy) and me!






Wednesday, October 2, 2013

So Close and Hair Dilemmas

Weigh In Wedneday


Last Week's Weight: 171.8 
Current Weight: 170.4
Change: -1.4
Total Loss: 57.6

AW YEAH.

So close to the 160s!

...Yet so far away.

In other news, I'm chipping away at the 18-20 mile goal I set for myself this week. If I'm planning on running a 15K the first weekend of November, I've gotta re-acclimate to a higher weekly milage (20ish) than I've been doing the past few weeks (12-15ish). The plan is to do a 7-miler this weekend, 8 next, 9 the week after, and then taper. Fingers crossed all goes well!

Also, WW is being rude and pulled this move on me after my successful weigh-in:


Noooooooooooo.

I'm going to stick with my gameplan from the last 2ish months of tracking on both WW and MFP. This approach, I'm hoping, will help "wean" me off WW as I approach my goal. Though, to be honest, I kinda wanna just drop WW. Here's my beef of the week: I went to track a 360-calorie egg salad sandwich from Pret a Manger that I grabbed for a quick dinner the other night. WW tried to tell me that bad boy was 14 FREAKING POINTS. I entered the nutritional info manually and found it was "only" 11PP. Uh yeah, WW, tryna make me spend HALF my daily points on a <400 calorie sandwich? I don't think so. So, that was annoying.

Anyway, I need your help for an issue completely unrelated to weight loss but that is, what should I do to my hair?

This is me now, in all my mangy glory:

For the record, my hair is not this straight naturally. 

Should I keep it long? This is the longest its ever been in my life ever.

Should I chop it like this? 




PS Those are both January Jones' beautiful locks.

Decisions, decisions. HALP!