Saturday, March 29, 2008

Sixtieth Weigh-in

See? I knew last week's gain was due to retention. I'm down 3.2 lbs today.

And would you look at that, I have less than 10 lbs to go. I can't tell you how excited I am. Especially because I didn't realize it until I updated my tracker. I have been anxiously anticipating this mini-milestone for a few weeks now and can't believe I missed it at the meeting!

It is such a great feeling to say that, after all this time, I have less than 10 lbs to lose. I still remember when I thought that the first 10 lbs was overwhelming. And now look at me! Lucky socks on feet, almost 60 lbs lost, and less than 10 lbs to go. Awesome!!!!

I hope everyone else has had a fabulous week!

Friday, March 28, 2008

Dear scale,

Oh, how cute you are! You're old, decrepit, dirty around the edges, but you've still got that spark. You know, that special way of making me happy or sad. You even pulled a new trick out of the bag this morning. Oh, what a wonderful surprise that was to see such a low number. So surprising, my husband heard me yell, "Holy crap!" from the other room.

You were so convincing, I hopped back on a second later to confirm and...oh you sneaky minx showed me a regular number. And no matter how many times I hopped on and off, you kept showing me that regular number. Oh, how playful you are! What a tease!

Now cut it out.

kindest regards,
bunnies, and kittens,

Tiny "I weighed 140 lbs for a brief moment this morning" Trim

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Spring Break

It's strange not going to Bootcamp this week. Last night I went out geocaching with friends instead. I even missed Biggest Loser which I always rush home to watch after Bootcamp.

But lest I get too caught up in the mini-vacation feeling, work is crazy. Anyone who's ever been a contractor for the government knows what March brings. Tons of last-minute jobs, all due at the end of the month. Gah.

It's a strange week, that's for sure. Busy crazy during the day, gloriously free in the evenings.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Review: Salsa Chicken

I tried out a new crockpot recipe the other day – Slow-cooker Salsa Chicken courtesy of Julie of New Start~New Life. All I can say is: YUM! Okay, I'll say a bit more. It was super easy to put together and the sauce was divine. I followed the recipe with a couple of modifications: I used Cream of Chicken soup instead as well as fat-free sour cream.

Both my husband and I loved it. In fact, it'll become a standby in our household because it's more than worth the minimal amount of effort involved. Thanks a million, Julie!

Yum! Rich spicy taco-flavoured sauce with fall-apart chicken

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Bootcamp: The End?

I did it! Bootcamp is now over and I survived all 10 weeks. I only missed two classes, too.

In two and a half months I have transformed myself. My cardiovascular endurance has never been better. I have definition in my arms - I even have hollows forming in my arm pits (I keep flexing in front of the mirror and poking them). I can feel muscles in my legs and in my stomach.

I can do pushups, tricep dips, crunches, and weights. I can run and not be out of breath. I can skip rope, balance on wobble boards, crawl around in the grass, get muddy and wet, and not even blink an eye.

Not only that, but I have so much more confidence in myself and in my body. I never knew I had it within me to meet such demanding challenges head on and overcome them night after night. I wanted to quit so many times, but I refused to give in. And now I'm stronger and prouder than ever. I would not give up any of the cold, wet, icy, exhausting evenings I went through for anything.

I've gained so much out of this experience, that I've signed up for another round. This time, only once a week, starting in April. As much as I want to go twice a week, the running clinic is now taking precedence so that I can meet another of my New Year's goals.

This is the last entry in my Bootcamp diary. However, before I close the book on it, I have one last "Play Along at Home" challenge for you. I hope you'll give it a try :)

Play Along at Home: Investigate Bootcamps in your area. If you have the money and the time, sign up for one. It's tough but if you persevere, the reward is beyond measure. Have fun, tone up, and surprise yourself!

Fifty-nineth Weigh-in

I'm up 1.6 lbs. It's been quite the rollercoaster the last few weeks hasn't it? Up, down, up, down, up. But hey, I'm really honestly and truly okay with it. This is a lifelong process and I know I'm doing my best. I will get there in the end.

So what caused me to gain this week? There were a few things that I can think of:
  • Bootcamp - we did circuit training for both classes this week. Circuit training is the hardest of all Bootcamp classes and two back-to-back has left me hobbling around. My muscles are super sore and are likely retaining water.
  • Activity Points - the running clinic is really ramping up; I earned 28 APs this week, not including any I do today. That's 8 more than usual. And I don't think I ate enough to sustain it, even with Wendie.
  • Bowels - yep, constipated again. Started Wednesday. And, as the DJ said on the radio this morning, "no movement on the charts." No truer words, Mr. DJ. Now pass me the metamucil.
  • Coffee - I stopped drinking it. Since I hear tell that coffee can stimulate your bowels, it may be the cause for the above-mentioned bowel fun.
So that was my week. Next week will be better on the scale, I know it. Not only because I trust in the process but because I get a glorious week-long break from Bootcamp.

How'd everyone else do?

I could only find one lucky sock this morning so I wore some regular socks instead. Must remember to pin lucky socks together so they come out of the wash at the same time.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Bootcamp: Day 20

Tonight was the last night for Bootcamp. I can hardly believe it's over. Fortunately, it was an absolutely gorgeous evening and I don't think it could've ended any better.

Again, we did circuit training but with entirely different exercises. I feel kinda guilty about it. I encouraged our instructor to do another circuit class because Mr. Trim has thus far been deprived of the experience. Hehe. Okay, I don't really feel guilty!

Compared with Tuesday night, this circuit training was a breeze. We ran up and down a small hill for the cardio which was a lot easier than skipping around in circles. The actual stations were pretty good; only a few we hadn't done before. Mr. Trim and I were both hurting towards the end, but we made it!

Duration: 01:16, Calories: 488, HR Average: 68%

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Charms: 50lbs and 55lbs

My new charms are in! Mr. Trim is getting fancy with the photography; I just love this photo.

Here are the meanings of my new charms:
  • Airplane (50 lbs): I'm amazed at just how far this journey of mine has taken me. I've traveled so far. Not just in clothing sizes, but in self-esteem, confidence and a desire to see and try new things.
  • Umbrella (55 lbs): We can weather anything if we have the right tools and support. Persistence, patience, and forgiveness – rain or shine!
I'm now down to three blank links left. Two links for the next ten pounds and one link for goal. I don't think it could've worked out any more perfectly!

Captain Underpants, part II

A few days ago I told my husband that he needed to start keeping a close eye on his underwear again. In my skinnier days, I'd steal a pair of his when I couldn't find clean ones of my own. But alas, as I became heavier, I could no longer grab a pair in emergencies and was forced to do laundry more often. But now that I'm lighter again...

Guess what I'm wearing today?

*wiggles eyebrows*

Why yes, you, too, as part of your weight loss journey, can achieve this non-scale victory. Being able to fit in your skinny-assed significant other's whitey tighties. Go me!

*strikes superhero pose*

But why in tarnation are these things baggy in the front?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Bootcamp: Day 19

Tonight was circuit training. Like the last time we did it, it was hard and it was challenging. We had to jump rope around a basketball court twice in between each station. Ye gads, skipping just kills me. In fact, I slowed down at each station so that I could catch my breath for the next go-round the court.

Even still, I did notice an improvement. Unlike last time (which seemed nigh on impossible), this time I could complete the reps with reasonably good form.

Duration: 01:20, Calories: 522, HR Average: 69%

The luck of the Irish

I'm pretty lucky when it comes to guessing the points values of foods. I've been at it over a year now and I like to think I'm pretty good at it. But every so often I get the boots taken to me as a lesson to never become complacent or too cocky. Prime example: yesterday I was mugged by a green shake down a dark alley.

Did you know that for half a small Shamrock Shake, it's 6 points? Yeah. Not the whole shake. Half a shake. And a small shake at that. Guess what Tiny won't be drinking next St. Patty's Day?

This morning I'm nursing a green eye and a bruised ego. Never underestimate the right-hook of artificially-coloured minty milk products.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Almond Cadbury Thins

There's a new type of Cadbury Thin showing up in the wild. Almond! I found a box at London Drugs, but I've also heard they've been seen at Walmart. There's real bits of almond mixed in there. My new addiction. Yum!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Healthy Oils

Many newcomers to Weight Watchers are often stumped when it comes to why we should be spending points on oil and how to incorporate it into our diets. I'll go over the "why" and the "how" in this post so that hopefully others won't be missing out on this important addition to our diets.

Why we need healthy oils
The more I read about it, the more it becomes apparent to me just how important the "good fats" are for our bodies. In addition to providing vitamin E and essential fatty acids, healthy oils aid in the absorption of vitamins and minerals, lubricate the digestion system, reduce internal inflammation and contribute positively to heart health. And if that weren't enough, they make your food taste yummier.

Now I know I'm just a random blogger with no medical background to support any of this. Therefore, don't take my word for it. In fact, I encourage you to do your own research.

To get you started, here's a few resources that I've gathered:
And don't stop there. Do your own searches on the internet. "Good fats" are aptly named.

How to incorporate healthy oils
When I first started, the advice I was given was "cook with it." Unfortunately, that didn't help me much. I crave details – practical instructions and specific tips. I had to experiment on my own and gradually came up with a list.

These are only suggestions and you can use any of the healthy oils that Weight Watchers recommends.
  • Make a bread dipper (olive oil and balsamic vinegar)
  • Add to single servings of soups/stews (canned or otherwise)
  • Stir into pasta and/or pasta sauce
  • Mix into rice or baked/mashed potatoes
  • Make your own vinaigrette
  • Mix it in with bottled salad dressing or dip
  • Spritz it on toast
  • Toss with steamed veggies
  • Toss with raw veggies and roast
  • Mix flaxseed oil into smoothies or oatmeal
  • Make a scrambled egg with olive oil and seasoning to taste
  • Stirfry with it
  • Mix with low-fat mayo for sandwiches
  • Mix into tuna, salmon, or egg salad for sandwich fillers
If you've noticed a pattern, good for you. I stir healthy oil into everything I can. Be creative and use these tips as a jumping point for your own experiments. It's easy once you get the hang of it. Just make sure you measure it so that you know exactly how much you're getting in.

Other tips
If none of the above works for you and/or you're looking to add additional pizzaz, look for flavoured oils (i.e., olive oil infused with garlic or even cinnamon flaxseed oil). As long as they have as their base one of the healthy oils Weight Watchers recommends, they most certainly count. And by base I don't mean margarine that contains olive oil. Only liquid oil counts. Thanks to Maggie-May24 from the board for this last tip.

Oil capsules
There's been a lot of discussion about whether oil capsules count towards our healthy oil servings or not. The consensus seems to be that they don't count. However, I'm a believer in compromise. If you've tried six-ways to sundown to get your healthy oils in (and you've tried every one of my suggestions to no avail), and the only way that works for you is to take capsules, then that's okay. Any healthy oil is better than no oil.

If you do go with oil capsules, I'd recommend measuring one. Slice open a capsule pour it into a measuring spoon. You might just find out that it takes a lot of capsules to make up the two teaspoons that Weight Watchers recommends.

Fifty-eighth Weigh-in

My lucky socks were out of the wash and on my feet today. I am down 2.2 lbs. Never underestimate the power of the sock*.

Since I've started the Wendie Plan, it seems like weight is just falling off me. It feels really good to see the scale dropping so quickly considering how slow it's been since January 1st.

Speaking of Wendie and eating...another member at the meeting today also discovered that sometimes eating more leads to losing more. She's a new-ish member, lost weight for the first two weeks, and has gained for the last month or so. She was so frustrated last week that it looked like she was about to quit. But she finally tried what our leader had been telling her - that she needed to eat more. And wouldn't you know it, she lost 3 lbs this week!

Eat more to lose more. Who woulda thunk it. Despite me telling this to many a newbie along the way, I'm finally getting it myself.

Have a great weekend everyone. I'm still catching up with y'all, so keep your blogs peeled!

* Disclaimer: lucky socks should be used in combination with a healthy eating plan and exercise. Lucky socks are not meant as a substitute for medical advice provided by your physician, or other medical professional. Always follow instructions on lucky sock packaging. Failure to do so could lead to unintended side-effects such as wearing lucky socks on your ears. This statement has not been evaluated by the FDA.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Washboard abs

Confession time. Who else spends an inordinate amount of time in front of the bathroom mirror, naked, trying to spread out your belly with your hands in an effort to make it look flat?

I caught myself doing it again this morning. One hand above belly, one hand below, smoosh and spread. I'll stand there for a few minutes and imagine I really have a flat stomach. I even briefly consider using some duct tape to keep it that way.

Alas, as soon as I let go, the belly button fold returns. One of these days it's going to stay flat with or without hands or adhesive products. That day will be sweet indeed. Especially because I'll have more time on my hands instead of hanging around in the bathroom all day.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Bootcamp: Day 18

I really slacked off in writing up these last few bootcamps. Sorry that this one is late, too. (Though I'm not sure anyone reads these anyways!)

Tonight's Bootcamp was another field trip. We went out under a cool, damp spring evening to a nearby lake. We power-walked to warm up and then ran the rest of the way to the lake. Once there, we had to zig-zag up and down along a bank. Next, we did resistance training with picnic tables. Tricep dips are a killer but I can actually last through a set now.

We ran back and did a nice long Yoga cool-down. Rain started plipping down as we were rolling up our mats. Yet another beautiful and refreshing evening.

Duration: 01:13, Calories: 487, HR Average: 70%

Catching up

I've been sneaking a few minutes here and there to catch up with everyone's blogs. Forgive me, but it's taking a lot longer than I thought. Y'all have been busy!

There's been a lot of butt kicking to the scale, too. Like, serious butt kicking. In fact, I wanted to give a special shout-out to Jenera of Just Me who I've been reading nigh on a year now. I've read with her through the ups and downs of weight loss and how frustrating it was. But despite all that, she kept going. She's been taking the scale to town this year and it's inspiring to see all of her hard work paying off. You go girl!

*thunderous applause*

Giving yourself credit

It's been a few weeks since I last talked about the Beck Diet Solution. Things went sideways and I stopped reading my response cards and all that jazz. But there was one thing that I kept doing and that was to stop and give myself credit every day.

Every evening I crawl into bed and grab my notebook from my bedside table. I jot down the date and everything that I accomplished that day towards my weight loss goals. I do it even on the days that I'm not so proud of.

Invariably, I always find something good that I've done despite my best (or worst) efforts. It could be as simple as drinking all of my water. Or even a single glass of water. Heck, there's been some days when it was a miracle I even got out of bed.

Writing the good choices down really helps with my "I blew a tire on the freeway, might as well slash the other tires" sort of mentality. Focusing on the positive takes the power away from the negative. And, since I compartmentalize everything into one day at a time, every day is a new opportunity to write something good down in my "Yay me" journal.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

New Find: Barlean's Cinnamon Flax Oil

I've been meaning to write about this oil ever since Mr. Trim had his wisdom teeth out. It's cinnamon-flavoured flaxseed oil made by Barlean's and it's awesome in a bottle. I bought it to jazz up the nutrition of his smoothies and wound up falling in love with it.

I know regular flaxseed oil is more versatile, but the cinnamon flavour is so clean and delicious that I can't imagine a smoothie without it now. Plus, I get in one of my servings of healthy oils earlier in the day which is always a bonus.

The oil is also organic and made with all-natural cinnamon flavouring. I can't compare price with other oils as this is the first time I've bought flax oil. It was about $15 and worth every penny.

To find Barlean's in your area, you'll have to send them an email (if you're in Canada), or use their store locater if you're from the US.

Bonus prize for US readers: you can send away for free samples. Yes, I'm jealous.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Captain Underpants

A bunch of small updates from me today.

First, thanks very much to everyone for your continued support and kind comments. It gives me strength when I'm down to know that I'm not alone.

Second, I've managed to find it within myself in these last few days to be as strong and as normal as possible considering the circumstances. I have a choice as to how I let the bump into my life. I can either let it rule me, or I can take joy from the here and now. Why would I want to spend my days moping around when there's so much to do and have fun with? I know that feeling can change, but for the moment, I'm going with it and it's working.

Third, I finally got around to ordering some more charms for my charm bracelet. I'm very excited and can't wait for them to come.

Fourth, I have a couple of product reviews lined up. Watch for them in the next few days.

Lastly, my underwear is finally getting baggy. Just thought I'd throw that out there as a random fact for the day :)

Bootcamp: Day 17

It was a beautiful day today. The sun was shining and because of the time change on Sunday, we actually got to work out in it. It was a novel experience. Up until now, I've always associated Bootcamp with the cold and the dark.

As the weeks have passed, participants have come and gone, but mostly gone. We were down to five tonight, including me.

To warm up, we had to run back and forth between two stations and jump rope. There was a bit of a race at the end between me and one of the guys. He beat me at the last second when I messed up on the last repetition, hehe. Ah well, it was all in good fun.

We went for a run as usual. It was so nice to be running in the sunshine. It felt like winter was making way for spring.

The rest of the evening was spent focusing on upper body work and using the wobble boards. Speaking of which, something happened that has never happened before. All of us were on the wobble boards, doing squats, when suddenly everyone realized (all at once) that we weren't sucking at it.

Normally when we're on wobble boards, there's lots of scraping sounds as the edges grind against the pavement. If you're proficient at it, the edge doesn't scrape. Needless to say, that rarely happens. But there we were, squatting, and doing tricep curls with weights, without making a noise. Somehow, all of us had found an inner well of balance. It was so awesome, it was kinda creepy.

When it was time to cool down, we did it outside under the darkening sky. As we stretched, cold air fell down all around us. It was literally flowing down from the sky. Together with the moon, it was very peaceful. I left feeling more refreshed than I had in weeks. I'm starting to feel sad that Bootcamp is coming to an end.

Play Along at Home: Wobble boards aren't just for standing on. Try using it as a platform to do push-ups on. Alternatively, assume the plank position and press on one side and then the other. It really works your core!

Duration: 01:14, Calories: 505, HR Average: 71%

Monday, March 10, 2008

I’m so behind

Sorry everyone. I'm still kicking. I'm really behind on posting a lot of things – Bootcamps and my most recent weigh-in for starts!

But I can breathe a bit easier now on the work front at least. I just finished with a particularly challenging job this afternoon. I still have lots of other projects on the go, but that one was a real monkey. I'm trying hard not to celebrate with a packet of Mini-Eggs. Oh you little sugar-coated temptations of bliss!

EDIT1: Okay, I've got the weigh-in posted. Now onto Bootcamps!
EDIT2: Bootcamp Day 13 is now ready.
EDIT3: Bootcamp Day 14 is also ready.
EDIT4: I'm on a roll. Bootcamp Day 15 is ready.
EDIT5: And finally, Bootcamp Day 16 is done.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Fifty-seventh Weigh-in

There you have it. Proof that wearing lucky socks really works. I did not wear them today. I gained .6 lbs. Coincidence? I think not.

But seriously, I was expecting that and was surprised it wasn't more. Up until now I've never had to deal with water retention during that time of the month. Since I went off birth control pills a few months ago, my period has gradually returned to that "joyous" (and I use the term loosely) occurrence it used to be. It started the day before weigh-in and I've been puffed up like a balloon ever since. Blech.

Notice how I'm blaming it mostly on water retention? No, I didn't forget about last weekend's eating spree. But when I sat down and really thought about it, it wasn't all that bad. At least that's what I'm telling myself.

Plus, water retention segues nicely into one of the meeting topics we discussed today. Our leader wrote up a small chart comparing the sodium levels in processed food with those in unprocessed food. It was a real eye opener to see just how much extra sodium we're consuming for the sake of convenience.

Instant oatmeal was the biggest shocker. For the pre-packaged kind, it can have anywhere between 80 mg and 270 mg of sodium in it. But if you make it the old-fashioned way, it has less than 5 mg per serving. Unbelievable, eh?

Even still, I'm not going to give up entirely on convenience foods. However, it's sure going to make me think twice about it. And maybe I'll try to make extra time to cook from scratch even more than I already do.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Bootcamp: Day 16

Considering Tuesday's Bootcamp, this one wasn't all that memorable. There was some spicy girl talk as is wont to happen when there's no guys around. But the exercises were pretty much the same.

To warm up, we had to throw our exercise balls against the wall really hard. I enjoyed this more than I should have. I was really whipping it because the instructor said we could imagine "anyone we wanted" standing against the wall. So what if maybe a client or two kept popping into my head? ;)

After that, we went on another field trip to the playground again. This time, we were only there to do some laps around it - backwards (that isn't a typo). Running backwards is a lot harder than it sounds because it works different muscles. After one lap, my shins were screaming at me to stop. So I walked backwards for the rest of it instead of running.

After the playground trip, we went back to base for more mat work. It was a duplicate workout from one of the earliest Bootcamps, so it wasn't all that new and exciting. But, as the instructor said, without duplication, you won't strengthen the muscles.

I can't believe there's only two weeks left. Time flies when you're in pain having fun.

Play Along at Home: Mix it up and walk (or run) backwards for a stretch. Also try walking up a hill sideways, switching the leading leg about half-way through so that you work both sides of your body.

Duration: 01:15, Calories: 475, HR Average: 68%

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Bootcamp: Day 15

Again, because I'm writing this a week after the fact, my memory is a bit fuzzy on this one. It's funny how quickly the memory of pain and suffering leaves your brain so quickly.

We went on a long endurance run for starters. Normally, we go on relatively quick ones. But for this evening at least, we had to run and run some more. I calculated it later at 2.5 kilometers.

When we came back, it was to do some crawling around in the grass with weights. Holding our weights, we had to assume the plank position and then "walk" ourselves in that position with our hands and legs along a length of grass. The instructor "helpfully" lent me bigger weights so that I wouldn't squoosh my hands. Gee, thanks.

We also had to do some crab walking with a 10 lb ball weight in our laps. And then there was doing the wheelbarrow with a partner (man, was that hard). Followed with more exercises involving our exercise balls and mats.

But the best part of the evening came at the end. The instructor had a big pair of homemade dice. One die had exercise types on it and the other had repetitions. When both were tossed, you had to do the given exercise for X amount of repetitions. And, if that wasn't enough, if you were finished first, you had to get up and run to the end of the parking lot and back again. We did four rounds of this and it was fun and exhausting at the same time. I even managed to do 30 push-ups in one go!

At the end of the evening I smelled like grass and my bum was covered in mud. Bootcamp is fun, really it is!

Play Along at Home: Go for a longer run or walk than you would normally do. You'll build up endurance. Bonus points if you come home smelling like nature.

Duration: 01:23, Calories: 612, HR Average: 74%

Steering the boat

Just a quick note for today. I'm still hanging in there and going through ups and downs with this "bump." Bumps make life hard to manage. Sometimes I think I can do it, sometimes I can't. And sometimes I'm just holding on.

After my stellar loss on Saturday, I had less than a stellar weekend eating wise. I gave in to some emotional eating a number of times because of having to write my victim impact statement. I just wanted to cocoon or eat. Since I couldn't cocoon because of prior commitments, I wound up making a lot of poor food choices instead.

But I'm allowed and it's okay. Of all times, this is not the time to be hard on myself. I just need to get through this month, one day at a time. So last night I wrote down everything that I did right health-wise over the weekend and found I still made good choices when I was able to. It's never too late to steer the boat back on course or, at the very least, somewhat in the general direction.

As always, thanks everyone for your support during my highs and lows. I'll catch up with y'all soon, I promise.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Fifth-sixth Weigh-in

Boom, baby, boom! Guess who lost 3 lbs this week and is now a) in the 140s, b) skinnier than her husband and c) the proud recipient of a new 5 lb star? Oooooooh yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I knew it was going to be big, but didn't think it'd be that big. In fact, it's my biggest loss ever on the plan. And it wasn't due to illness, fudging, wearing lighter clothes, or anything like that. It was all due to Wendie, the encouragement/tips from everyone else to keep going, and (it has to be mentioned) my lucky socks.

Did you know? I have lucky socks. I've been wearing them since my 1.4 lb loss a few weeks ago. Ever since I started wearing them, I've shown a loss. I highly recommend finding a pair yourself; the power of exceptionally gifted socks can never be underestimated.

I've never been nearer my goal. I'm so freaking excited that it killed me not to be able to post this until now.

THREE POUNDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!