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Thursday, April 30, 2009

ICE CREAM Challenge!!

The other day I commented on another bloggers page how I was doing good with the diet part of my healthy lifestyle, except for one thing... ICE CREAM! It's my vice. He told me that I need to just "give it up". I wrote back that I didn't want to deprive myself and ice cream was really the only bad thing I was eating. Plus I figured I could "train" myself to have three or four bites and be satisfied. Yeah... who was I kidding with that statement? I think I've been trying to have only three or four bites for the last two years.

Well I was thinking about this ice cream issue and have decided that I do need to give it up. I'm so determined to get the best results I can... I'm going to do something so outrageous and unthinkable for me: I'm giving up ice cream! May not be that big of deal to some people, but to me that's like giving up air to breath! So I give to you:

My Ice Cream Challenge

Who: ME!
What: I have a half-eaten pint of Haagen-Dazs low fat frozen yogurt (my new favorite and just as bad as regular ice cream) and I am making a promise to myself to not eat anymore of it and not buy any other ice cream type of desserts. I've kicked the carb habbit and no longer crave pasta for every meal so ice cream is my next "bad habit" to get rid of. I have taken pictures of how much is left in the carton and what day I started and I'm going to see how many days/weeks/months I can NOT touch it at all. I think in the future I'll take the updated pictures with my cell phone next to the carton for a date stamp (since you can't change the date - or time, for that matter - on a cell phone).
When: April 30, 2009 (day 1) - as long as I can
Why: Simply put: I want to look good and feel good about my body and health. I want to be the fittest and healthiest I've ever been in my life. I want to show my friends and family members who struggle with their weight that it is possible. I want to be an inspiration to others. I want to live as long as I can and enjoy my life!

Just to be clear, this challenge is to get me off of ice cream (gee, I sound like a drug addict or something). Yes, throwing it out will be very easy to do, but I want to build my will-power also. I've noticed that when I have something in my reach, I can resist it more. If I don't keep the pint in the freezer and toss it, I more inclined to indulge when I have a first chance. Anyway, by holding on to it this should be something that works for me.

Day 1: April 30, 2009

P90X Day 14 and 15/90: Kenpo, Chest and Back and ARX

Start of week three and I am upset!

First off, I didn't do Kenpo last night and instead went for a 6 mile run with my boyfriend and my dog. But today is what really upset me... I felt like I wasn't pushing myself the past two weeks so I MADE myself push harder. I had a complete mental change when I did Chest and Back tonight and it showed in numbers. For example, week 1 did 9 standard-toe push-ups which isn't bad, but the second week I dropped down to me knees and did 20 standard-knee push-ups. Today, I brought it and cranked out 10 toe push-ups and 15 knee push-ups. The same thing happened with all the exercises tonight.

I'm upset with myself for not putting all my effort into the exercises from the start and although it's a good thing I realize what I can do, I'm hoping I get my mindset right every time I get ready to bring it. Luckily I figured this out in week 3 and not Phase 3! How mad would I have been with that?!

Enough ranting... I absolutely love Tony and the kids and this fabulous program he produced. When I first starting using Beach Body product, I promised myself I would get more than two or three and just rotate them... I already have ChaLean Extreme, Turbo Jam, and P90X AND I'm going to get Shaun T's Insanity when it comes out... so that's four products already... but I want more Tony!!! I'll have to make the next program a reward for reaching a fitness goal or something.

Cheeseburgers and beer = nice body?!

Quoted from People Magazine: "Channing Tatum may have one of the best bodies in Hollywood. But when he isn't working, he's a regular guy with a taste for "beer and cheeseburgers." "Life is too short to miss out on the beautiful things like a double cheeseburger," says Tatum, 29."

Eight months ago, this was my thinking. Whenever I went out to eat, I would splurge. Not on dollars, but calories. My infamous saying was, "You only live once. I wanna be happy and eat what I want". The thing was, I wasn't happy eating what I wanted... not even close. Yes, Channing may have a "nice" body even though he eats cheeseburgers and beer (lucky bastard!), but I am far happier where I am in my life now than eight-months-and-33-pounds-heavier ago. I am no where near my healthy body weight but I am a hella lot closer than I was eight months. When I think back at how my life used to be... fast food for dinner after I got off of work at 11:00pm, going out every weekend and spending $100's on alcohol, not exercising, not doing anything... it's no wonder I exploded up to almost 180 lbs. But it's also so remarkable how some time, effort, and patience can change you. Since starting my weight-loss journey, I have not gone through any drive thrus, I have had only a couple of drinks (TOTAL) in the last eight months, and I exercise religiously 6 days of the week.

Yes, I have a long ways to go to get my "sexy back", but today it is not a question of if anymore, but when!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

P90X Day 13: Rest Day; diet: Y

Today was my rest day and it was well needed. I can't believe I'm already almost two weeks into P90X... it feels like I just started last week. As far as the weights go, I think I really need to lift heavier and less reps. Right now I do about 15 reps but I want to bring that down to max out at 12 at the most, but aim for 10 reps. Right in the middle of giving me muscle and leaning out (is it even possible to do both?). When I do Shoulders and Arms again (this coming Sunday), I'll totally see what can be done. I'm not feeling the muscle soreness after my sessions, but that's not unusual for me because I normally don't. I feel like I'm lifting to exhaustion, but think I really need to focus on fully concentrating and PUSHING MYSELF to the point that I'm uncomfortable. Not with pain, but with my limit. I am extremely eager to get results and I KNOW I can do it. Time, effort, and proper nutrition is all I need.

As Tony says, "Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither was my body."

Monday, April 27, 2009

Updated picture...

P90X Day 10, 11 and 12/90: Shoulders and Arms ARX, Yoga, and Legs and Back

Don't have too much to say today except that I completed days 10, 11 and 12. Actually, today I didn't do the leg exercises for Legs and Back because I've been having knee pain from this weekend so thought it would be best to rest the knees till they feel better.

The days with P90X seem to be going a lot faster than CLX did but maybe that's because I just started. Still loving it!


Shakeology is ordered and on it's way!

I placed my order for two bags of Shakeology: chocolate for me and greenberry for my boyfriend. I can't wait till it comes in because of all the great stuff I've heard about it. The only thing I'm not looking forward to: gas problems. Gross... I know, but I've read this is a common problem when you first start drinking Shakeology. I decided I'm going to use only half a scoop the first week I start just to get my body used to it and until I get it in, I'm loading up my body with good, clean, whole fiber from a bunch of different fruits and veggies. Hopefully the "gas" won't be too much of a problem.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

No P90X today but I tried Shakeology!

Today I was pretty busy and had to help a friend work an expo tonight so I skipped out on my workout tonight... Shoulder and Arms. Don't worry, I'm going to bring it twice tomorrow... Shoulder and Arms in the morning and then Yoga X at night.

At the expo there was a booth of P90Xer's and some Beach Body coaches (one of the reasons why I went to the expo) and they were giving out samples of Shakeology. That was perfect because I didn't know which flavor to get. Well I liked the chocolate one better than the greenberry, but I'm thinking I'm going to alternate between the two flavors every month. I'm going to place my order tomorrow and can't wait till it gets in! Dallas Carter was suppose to be there too, but I didn't see him. It's okay... met other coaches and had a nice time talking to them.

Tonight's blog is short because I'm so tired right now. Gonna stay up for a little bit more then it's off to la-la land for me.

Oh yeah... took my dreaded "before" picts today... I'm not brave enough to post them but I had to take them or I knew I would regret it later. Maybe I'll post them in a couple of months when I look a little better.

Good night...

Friday, April 24, 2009

P90X Day 9/90: Plyo; diet: Y;

Ahhh... plyo, one of my faves (I think I say that about all the P90X exercises)! Today I really tried to push myself harder than last week's plyo and I think I really did. I couldn't keep with the pace of Tony but I promised myself I would do the each exercise at my own pace for the entire 30 - 60 seconds. I did have to modify some of the jumps, like the dreaded rock star, because it's way too hard on my knees. I substituted jump squats when it came to rock stars and I also subbed jump roping for hot feet... my feet get all cramped up and the shin splints start to come back.

One thing I noticed about the two times I did plyo is I feel sick after. Not nausea sick, but body aches and chills. It comes out about 2 or 3 hours after I'm done exercising so don't know what's going on. I eat dinner about 1 - 2 hours after I workout so I don't think it's an energy thing and I really don't think I'm bringing it too hard. Maybe I need a little more food during the day on plyo days so I'll try that next week.

Tomorrow I won't have a chance to workout till after 10:00 at night because I'm helping a friend man his booth at an expo show but I'm excited because I get to meat a bunch of local Beach Body coaches. I'm also hoping to pick up my first bag of Shakeology tomorrow at the expo and I will definitely be giving my review about that. I've heard so many good things... we'll see!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

P90X Day 8/90: Chest and Back and ARX; diet: Y

Brought it today but still feel like I can give it more. And my shoulders are still sore instead of my chest or back... why? I start out great... doing my push-ups on my toes but once the second round hits... it's like I can't do them at all... not even on my knees. I know my form is still okay, but I feel the push-ups in my shoulders more than anywhere else as the program is coming to an end. Before P90X I did ChaLEAN Extreme and did the 100 Push-up Challenge and always felt push-ups in my arms so I can't figure out what's going on this time. Maybe all the different push-up styles are doing it. Not sure but I'll make a mental note to really pay attention to my form when I do Chest and Back again next week. And P.S. - dive-bomber push-ups are the ones I love and hate the most! I think this is actually the style of push-up that gets my shoulders sore!

ARX kicked my butt!!! I brought it the hardest I ever did so far and my abs are so sore!!! I seriously thought I was going to pass out on some of the exercises because I tried to go for as many reps as I could. Why is it that the abs hurt so much more intensely than any other muscle group? It's a different kind of burn... but I guess because they hardly get used (?). Anyway, I decided to change it up and do the CLX ab workout every other day just to mix it up with ARX. And I really wanna throw in some Core Synergistics but don't have time to do the full hour long routine... maybe on days I have the time, I'll sub that for ARX. It's still really early into the program so I'll just wait it out till I get bored with ARX.

P90X Day 6 and 7/90: Rest day and Kenpo/cardio; diet: read below

So things have been kind of "mellow" the past couple of days with P90X (a little too mellow because it's affected my diet; I'll write more about that later). Tuesday was day 6 and it was my rest day so I did absolutely nothing and loved it! Yesterday was day 7 and it was my cardio day. I've switched around the P90X schedule by giving me a rest day before Kenpo because it worked better for my schedule. I've done the Kenpo dvd several times before starting the program and found I really like it, however some of the punches/kicks tweak my knees a little so I've decided to make Kenpo days Kenpo/cardio days. I'll either do Kenpo or some other type of cardio, whether it's running, elliptical, stairs, or going for a long walk with my dog. My boyfriend is off from work on these days too so it's nice to get outside and do some running together (we barely see each other even though we live together because I work days and he works nights). Anyway, yesterday we didn't get a chance to run outside so I jumped on the elliptical for an hour while we watched some tv instead.

Okay... diet wise... the last two days have been pretty bad. Tuesday my boyfriend and I went out for lunch and had pho with some fried spring rolls. After that we went to a little scone bakery right next door and we split a mini scone, a lemon bar, and a piece of banana bread... OMG talk about white carb AND sugar overload. I'm really good at staying away from white carbs and sugar and I could feel the difference later on in the day. I was so tired and sluggish and couldn't believe how little energy I had. So what did I do to compensate? I went home that night, didn't exercise and had some frozen yogurt as I watched Biggest Loser (go figure!). GREAT! THIS IS THE ROAD TO SUCCESS WITH P90X!! Yesterday wasn't much better. We went out to lunch again but this time to California Pizza Kitchen. I stayed away from the free bread and only ate half of my pesto chicken pizza so it wasn't too bad. Got home later that night and had a good dinner (sautéed chicken breast with baby bok choi) but then I had TWO servings of frozen yogurt after dinner. At least I got in some exercise that night, right?!

Today I'm back on track with the diet and plan to stay that way! I normally never eat out so these past two days have been out of the ordinary. I'll be back in a few hours to write about P90X today: Chest and Back... one of my faves!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Word of the day: ACCOUNTABILITY

Word of the day: ACCOUNTABILITY!

This is actually the word of my life, not just the day.

Accountability is needed in almost every aspect of life: career, friends, family, strangers, spouses, even your relationship with your pets! So it's no wonder this word has so much power when dealing with getting healthy. Along the way, I have learned that being accountable to myself is more important than anything. As I was talking to a friend today, I mentioned to him that I started my own blog and the first thing he says to me is, "It's not about losing weight, is it?" I was stunned at his comment because not only did I not know what he meant by it, but I was also a little insulted. The biggest thing going on in my life right now is getting back in shape, so I told him, "Yes, it's about me losing weight and getting healthy." He then went on to ask me why I would do such a thing... put myself out there on the internet for others to judge... and my only answer to him was: ACCOUNTABILITY. By putting my day-to-day accomplishments and struggles out there for (potentially!) the entire world to see, not only keeps me motivated but keeps me accountable to myself and to my potential-blog readers.

To me, staying accountable to myself is by far the most important thing I can do. Without it, living a healthy lifestyle will almost be non-existent... I mean think about it... why do you stay healthy and fit? Sure, to feel better and look better, but I'm sure it has a lot to do with being accountable and responsible to your body, mind, and soul. My accountability keeps me motivated to make smart food choices throughout the day and it gets my butt off the couch and moving. Such a small word with such a big meaning... it is literally saving my life right now!

Monday, April 20, 2009

P90X Day 5/90: Legs and Back; diet: Y

**Just a quick diet update: Following the portion approach nutrition plan for P90X has been so much easier than I thought! When I first bought P90X back in December and looked it over, I thought it was crazy... but after doing it for 5 days now, it's so simple. Granted I can't make a complete meal because I wouldn't know what to count all the ingredients as, but this portion approach is really easy. If it says I can have one cup of brown rice, I just split that up for lunch and dinner. 2 cups of dairy, split that up as 1/2 a cup soy milk in the morning and evening and 1/2 a cup with my twice daily protein shakes, etc. etc. I love it!**

On to today's exercise: Legs and Back. I'm not sure how I like this workout yet. My legs are pretty defined for a "fat" person and they have always been my strongest/most defined muscle group in my body so I didn't know what to expect. I was able to keep up Tony and the group on EVERY SINGLE exercise so that shocked me! This being my first time doing this exercise, I was so surprised that I could hang with the wall-squat (yea me!) I used to do a ton of these when I played basketball and the way we had to make sure our quads were parallel to the floor was keep a basketball in our laps while we did the wall squat so that's what I did this time too... just so I know I was doing it correct. Another reason why I'm not too sure about the leg exercises is because after I worked out my knees were sore. Now I'm a stickler when it comes to form especially on leg exercises, but I noticed you were almost forced out of proper formation on some of the moves. For example, the deadlift squats. For me personally, it's near impossible to keep my knees over my ankles when I'm trying to squat low enough to touch the ground so I had to modify and not touch the ground. And any jump move from a squat position was pretty hard on my knees. From my understanding, a proper squat shifts your weight to your heels and takes almost all the weight off of your toes, but in order to go from a squat to a jump movement, your weight has to quickly shift from your heels to your toes and it cramped up my feet. This is just me and I think it has a lot to do with my muscles/joints not being used to moving that quickly or in that direction so I'm hoping with time and more P90X, I'll get it down pain-free.

As far as the back exercises, still don't have my pull-up bar yet so still using the resistance bands. The 50# band works great and I can totally feel it everywhere, but it's most sore in my shoulders. Because it seems to be working the wrong muscles, I took it down to the 30# band and that made such a huge difference! With the 30# band, I still had awesome form and I could totally feel it in my back muscles. Gotta love that.

Tomorrow is my rest day and I am looking forward to it. Actually I have to do ARX since I missed it on Saturday and had to do it yesterday therefore I couldn't do it tonight. Anyway, totally looking forward to relaxing tomorrow and starting my second week of P90X later this week! :)

Meeting Dallas Carter and Shakeology!

On another note, I'm hoping to meet Dallas Carter this weekend! He was one of two Million Dollar Body winners this year and he's from my home-town! I was talking to a local Beachbody coach that I just met and found out that we are both going to be at the same local exhibit this weekend. How cool would that be to meet him?! There's going to be a bunch of people there giving out samples of Shakeology and selling some products so I'm hoping to pick up a bag for myself since I've wanted to try it.

I'm going to be helping a friend work a booth at the exhibit so I hope I have time to walk around and find the Beachbody team!

P90X Day 4/90: Yoga; diet: Y

So totally didn't do Yoga X today instead went on another hike.

Now I know yoga is important and time and money went into the development of the entire P90X program, but Yoga X kills me... it's so boring! I've done it a couple of times before I started the 90 days and I just can't stand doing so many downward and upward dogs... and 90 minutes?! I know! This is not the best attitude to have as I'm just starting the program, but mentally I am so exhausted just thinking of this yoga dvd. I've read only good things about the yoga part of P90X and how it's helped so much with people's flexibility so I think I need to change my attitude about it. Sundays are the days I have yoga planned in my schedule and since my boyfriend works all day on Sundays, I really have no excuse. I promise I'll try and get through the entire thing this Sunday...

P90X Day 3/90: Shoulders and Arms; diet: Y

One of my favorites!

I love working out my arms and shoulders, so I knew this dvd was going to be one of my faves. But I came across problems with the program, not because of P90X, but because of the weights I use. I use Powerblocks, so for some of the moves, the Powerblocks are too bulky to get in close to my body and do the full and proper rep... like the bicep curls you do with your elbows on the inside of your knees... the weights would knock me in the face if I did a full curl... so I think I need to resort to pausing the dvd and doing actual concentration curls to try and really isolate the biceps. Also, toward the end of the dvd, my arms would give out at like rep 8 or 9 and the only way to get the weight up is to compromise my form. This has never happened to me in any other exercise program... I could always make it to at least 12. I think P90X goes through a lot more reps in one sitting then I'm used to so I have to learn to pace myself (duh! like Tony says). And I don't feel like I reached failure on those last 8 or 9 reps... my arms just wouldn't do it. I wasn't sore the next day and usually if I lift to failure on my biceps, I feel it BIG time the next couple of days. I'm not too concerned yet... week one is my time to get familiarized with the program so I'll be sure to try and improve on those areas.

Anyway, I'm lifting a little too light I think, so next week I'm gonna up the weights to see what can be done. That's one thing I like about these "repeat" exercise days... the first round and I can find a weight I'm comfortable with, but adjust it the second round and see how that goes.

Still bringing it...

Oh... I forgot to do ARX with Shoulders and Arms so I added it on to Yoga day (yesterday).

Friday, April 17, 2009

P90X Day 2/90: Plyometrics; diet: Y

Today was plyo and I loved it! Kept up with Tony and the "kids" through all the exercises, even though I had to go on my own slower pace on some of them. I really liked it because even though all the exercises were pretty simple to follow, they are ALL really high-intensity... this less-than-an-hour workout gave me the same calorie burn as an hour long run would have. My only problem with plyo is that the moves are pretty high-impact as well. I have a history of shin splints and doing the Hot Foot exercise really started to stress it out. It's a pretty easy problem to fix though, since I have shin braces I can wear, but I also feel like it's tough on my knees. Especially the Rock Star jump exercise. This was my first time trying this dvd so I know it will get easier on my joints as my body gets used to it AND as I lose weight AND as I learn how to properly land on the moves. I workout on carpet with shoes on so I know this helps tremendously but anything to help prolong the life of my knees would be awesome.

Anyway, overall I really liked plyo because getting a really good cardio workout makes me feel like a million bucks after. I totally can't wait to see my progress here also!


P90X Day 1/90: Chest and Back, ARX; diet: Y

I did it!! I competed my workout yesterday but didn't have time to come back and blog about it. And it's not because I was so drained and still lying on the floor all night in pain, but because I was SOOOO tired. Early yesterday morning I did a very taxing hike (it's actually the picture on the right side of my page; all the railroad tracks leading up the mountain), burned over 550 calories just from that, then I had to rush to work by 11:00, then come home and do P90X. I'm surprised I was able to complete it.

Anyway, on to my thoughts as if I were writing this yesterday: Chest and Back was okay. I really liked all the exercise, but besides the push-ups, I never really thought I was getting a "good" workout. I did the Fit Test the day before I started and passed everything with semi-flying colors. But all those push-ups on this dvd were killer! I love it! I started out doing everything on my toes but by the second round I was down on my knees for some of the push-ups. For the pull-ups, I don't have a bar yet, but I use the 50 lbs. resistance band attached to the top of the door frame and I was a little disappointed at how easily I could do it. Not because I'm that strong (not even close), but because the door frame is that low so there's not enough resistance. Plus, my arms would get tired before I even felt anything in my back. I love the Heavy Pants and Lawnmower because I can feel it in my back, but again, my shoulders got tired out before my back did. Am I doing something wrong? Now Ab Ripper... So many words come to mind when I think of this, but I am not allowed to write any of those words here without changing my blog settings to adult content for swearing. I'm just joking, it wasn't that bad. I promised myself I would do at least 10 reps at Tony's pace for each exercise but that was soon shot to "h-e-double hockey sticks" from about the third or fourth exercise. I know I'll get better at the exercises, so that's what I'm looking forward to with the ARX. I think I'm gonna make up a table to track reps for ARX just to see my progress. Overall, I still love P90X and can't wait for Plyo tonight! :)

Now on to my thoughts from today: Chest and Back is awesome! I woke up this morning so sore in my back, shoulders and abs... loves it!!! Not feeling too much in my chest, as I never do with push-ups. I don't know why that is. I've been doing CLX for the last 2.5 months and I have never been sore at all, so I'm loving the sore muscles. It takes a little longer for me to wash my hair because my shoulders hurt but it burns so good!

Plyo... better watch out tonight!

**Edited to also say that I want to track my P90X nutrition so on my daily posts, I will be saying whether or not I followed the diet. I am doing Level I, portion plan diet of P90X**

Thursday, April 16, 2009

I can't wait! I can't wait!!!

So, as of right now, it's 3 hours 44 minutes and 18 seconds, until I get to push play and bring it! I can't believe how excited I am to start P90X. It's no wonder though... 4.5 months of anticipation will do that to you! Although I have tried all the dvd's before (just to try them) I can't wait to really bring it since today is the official start day of my 90-day challenge!! I'm doing the Classic Version, and although I still have about 25 pounds to lose, I plan to follow the nutrition plan to a "T" and really give it my all every workout, all workout long. I'll be back to post my thoughts after I finish!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Dropping CLX and getting ready to BRING IT!!

Okay I have some big news and I think most of you will think I'm crazy, but don't get mad at me. I am stopping CLX with only two weeks left in the entire program.... I know, I know.... but let me explain:

1.) I have been super motivated to start P90X since December but put it off due to a 13K run I was training for and the introduction of CLX by a friend (thanks, Jay!) pushed it back even farther. Even to today, I cannot wait to start P90X and I think it's had a negative effect on my CLX performance. Sine I'm super motived right now, I feel like I should go with my momentum and get a really good start at P90X.

2.) I have a recently planned trip coming up the last two weeks of July, so if I start P90X now, I'll finish up with perfect timing so that way my workout schedule doesn't get interrupted.

3.) Kind of lead backs to number one: I've just not been motivated to keep going with CLX in this last phase. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the program, but for me the timing was wrong with P90X just sitting on my shelf at home waiting for me! I think because it's the last phase of CLX I've just been looking forward to finishing up the program and starting P90X.

So with that said, I will be stopping CLX and starting P90X tomorrow. Gonna do the fitness test today so we'll see. I did it once back in December when I first got the program, so I'm hoping I do better this time since I've been doing CLX. Anyway, I can't wait to start. I'll be sure to post after my first workout.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Day 70 of CLX

Yesterday was Day 70 of CLX... Lean Phase 2. This is my second week of the last phase of CLX... so only about 2.5 weeks left till I complete the program. What really upset me is the fact that I know I didn't give it my full effort. In other words, I didn't push myself to the limit I could take it to. This past week I upped all my weights by 2.5 lbs. and have been able to lift with proper form all the way up to the 12th rep. In the second phase of CLX, you are suppose to lift heavy and max out at 6 - 8 reps... well I'm using the same amount of weights in the third phase where you're suppose to lift and fatigue at 10 - 12 reps. Now I know I haven't gotten that much stronger, I think I just wasn't "bringing it" (to speak in P90X terms) earlier in the program. True, I've never missed a workout, not even one, and nutrition wise I didn't stick to a particular plan, just ate like I have been for the past several months while I was trying to lose weight. This means a daily caloric intake of about 1200 - 1500 calories.

But thinking back, I don't think I knew at the time I wasn't lifting heavy enough. For the last couple of weeks, I've been super excited to start P90X, which is why I think I really brought it this week, but I think that has been my downfall for the CLX program as well. I bought P90X back in December but put off doing it because CLX came out and I wanted to lose more weight before starting P90X. Plus, I knew starting out with the CLX program would be a good intro into the P90X world. Anyway, I think I started CLX only half-hearted because of this program switch. All in all, my results with CLX have still been good, not great, but that's no one's fault but my own:

On the advice of several other P90X'ers, I'm going to try and keep my daily caloric intake to about 1200 - 1500 calories but incorporate a ton more nutritious, clean, whole foods to keep my energy levels high so I can really give it my all when I start the program. Scheduled start date for P90X is May 7, 2009... so about three and a half more weeks before I B-R-I-N-G I-T!!!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Recipe: Shrimp fra Diavolo Pasta

10 oz. cleaned shrimp, tail removed
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups jarred tomato sauce
1 tbs. olive oil
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
2 cups cooked whole-wheat pasta
  • Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat and add olive oil, garlic and red pepper flakes.
  • Saute the garlic until it begins to brown, then add tomato sauce and shrimp and simmer.
  • Turn down after it simmers, and cook until shrimp are pink and cooked through (about 10 mins).
  • Serve over pasta with a side of steamed veggies. Makes 2 servings.
Nutrition info (shrimp pasta only, not steamed veggies): 372 calories, 13.8g fat, 1.6g saturated fat, 55mg cholesterol, 392mg sodium, 53.4g carbs, 7.3g fiber, 12.1g sugar, 16.3g protein, 17% vit A, 19% vit C, 13% calcium, 28% iron.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Recipe: Ginger Soy Salmon

4 salmon fillets (5 - 6 oz. each)
1 tbsp. minced ginger
1/4 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
2 tbls. dark sesame oil
1 bunch sliced green onions
pepper to taste
  • Heat oven to 425 degrees
  • Place each fillet in center of a 12 x 15 inch foil sheet. Mix ginger, soy, sesame oil, onions and pepper and spoon equally over each fillet.
  • Seal up each fillet by folding sides and top of foil. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet
  • Bake 20 - 30 minutes or until salmon is fork tender
  • Serve with steamed veggies and brown rice. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional info (for salmon, not steamed veggies or rice): 301 calories, 18.6g fat, 4.1g saturated fat, 100mg cholesterol, 543mg sodium, 4.3g carbs, 1g fiber, 1g sugar, 35.9g protein, 4% Vit A, 19% Vit C, 2% calcium, 5% iron

Monday, April 6, 2009

It really is all about ME!

Yes, I am losing weight for myself and not because someone told me to.

But it does feel good to have others acknowledge my success. I've tried the diet thing before and nothing really stuck or hit me like it has this time around. The other times it would be because my family says I'm getting fat (of course, these aren't their exact words, but it's the point they were trying to make) or because my doctor says I have to lose weight. This time, I choose to do it on my own because I wanted to do it for MYSELF. No one needed to tell me that if things didn't change, I would be dead far sooner than I was suppose to. No one needed to tell me it looked like I gained more weight. No one needed to tell me I was fat... because I already knew all these things! I've learned that I need to put me and myself before other people. A lot of times we try to please everyone else like our boss, our family, our friends, etc., etc., etc.

The biggest (no pun intended) example I can think of right now is Kathy Ireland. As a mother, she put everyone else's needs before her own and without even realizing it she had also put on an extra 25 lbs. She has since lost all the weight but I love this example because this goes to show that even super-models and celebrities can fall victim to the "I'm-too-busy-to-exercise-or- prepare-a-nice-healthy-meal-for-my- family". Although I don't have a family of my own, I still have many things going on in my life that need my attention and I find it can be very easy to use this excuse. But by putting myself first and rearranging my priorities so I'm at the top of the list has completely changed my feelings about exercise and cooking at home. I look forward to coming home and working out and preparing healthy meals has become a Sunday night ritual with my boyfriend.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Day 65 of CLX

Today was CLX Burn Intervals (BI) and Ab Burner. I decided to switch it up and do Ab Burner and Ab Extreme before I do BI because I don't like lying down on my carpet all sweaty to do my ab workout. Anyway, started out great and got through most of the ab workout, which is saying a lot because when I started CLX two months ago I could barley keep up with the program. It's amazing to see such strides in such a little time. Anyway, took a 10 minute break to call a friend after I did both Ab workouts and got ready for BI. Started out awesome and full of energy, but once I hit the 30 minute mark, it was like someone turned off my switch! I had no energy to finish up the last 18 minutes of the dvd. What's going on? I ate breakfast about 3 hours prior to working out like I normally do, but for some reason today I just couldn't go on. I just stopped the dvd and decided to take a nice long walk in the afternoon, but I fell asleep after lunch for 2 hours!

I'm hoping I just needed some rest and hopefully when I do Lean Circuit 2 tomorrow I can really bring it.

What I have done up to this point

I started losing weight back in September of 2008 by changing the way I eat and adding in exercise. This post will be a quick recap of what I have done since then to accomplish my current weight-loss status:

Sept. '08-Oct. '08 - When I made the decision to get fit again, the very first thing I did was look for a good workout dvd. I knew I wouldn't be comfortable going to a gym so I researched a bit and decided on Jillian Michaels' "30 Day Shred" dvd. I also bought an elliptical and these two items were the first steps for me. As far as diet, MFD really put my eating habits into perspective and I learned how to choose healthier items to eat. Since I wanted this to be a life change, I took things one at a time... worked on increasing my water intake and when I could do that daily without even thinking about it, I moved on to something else like adding a fruit or veggie in at every meal. I worked slowly and one change at a time because I wanted to make these changes permanent and last a lifetime.

Nov. '08-Jan. '09 - The HOLIDAY SEASON!!!! During these months, my boyfriend and I decided to make hiking a weekly thing and we've kept it up even to today. I was still continuing with "30 Day Shred" and the elliptical and actually bought another one of Jillian's sets, "The Biggest Winner" series and was rotating through the dvd's three to four times a week. In Nov. my boyfriend and I signed up for our first 13K, The Great Aloha Run, so we also started to run. I used a modified version of the "Learn to Run" program to get me going and it worked out great. I also bought the Beach Body workout program P90X but didn't start it because I wanted to lose a little more weight first. Diet wise I was still making my little changes and incorporating a lot more whole and clean foods and cutting out all fast-food. Now I was also using a food scale and measuring cups for all the food I ate. I know most people hate doing this, but if was neccessary for me so I could learn portion control. At the end of these three months, I was down 20 lbs. from when I started. **First time I have ever lost weight during the holiday season!**

Feb. '09-today - February 16 was the date of the 13K and we ran and complete it in 1:45 minutes... 13 minute miles which isn't bad at all! In Feb. I also started a different Beach Body program, ChaLean Extreme (CLX). I bought this one and used this before P90X because CLX is geared as a weight-loss program, where P90X is not. I am currently in my last month of CLX and totally love this program because of the results that I have gotten (check out my review in a future post), but I can't wait to start P90X! Scheduled start date is May 7, 2009. I also decided to try the "100 Push-Up Challenge" and I am on my last week of that, but no where near reaching 100 push ups. I can currently do 23 standard push-ups (standard TOE push-ups! No girlie push-ups for me!) which is a huge difference from the 5 that I could do when I started the program. I'm still continuing with weekly runs and hikes. Diet wise I have changed it up and I am trying to follow a 40 carb/30 protein/20 fat ratio diet. Incorporating a lot more lean protein and cutting out some of the carbs has given me more energy and I really like that.

Of course my journey so far has been much more than I have written but this was a brief description of where I have come from in the last 7 months. I've had to deal with a lot of people who think I'm crazy for trying to lose 55+ lbs., either because they don't think I can do it or because they don't think it's possible, but these are the people who push me to strive for more. I am a huge competitor and I am stubborn so I feed off of comments like these. On the flip side, there have been so many other people who praise me and think it's absolutely wonderful that I can do this. I've even had people call me an inspiration because they see me as proof that "normal" people can lose weight.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

My First Blog!

So I finally decided to start a personal blog about my weight-loss journey, to let others know a little about me - where I've come from, what I'm doing now, what has or has not worked for me - and hopefully be an inspiration to someone else.

A little about me:
As far back as I can remember I was always active. I grew up several blocks away from the beach so every weekend my family would ride our bikes down to the beach and make a day of it, ending it with dinner and a sunset. In elementary school, I was "one of the boys" and sports was my life! Kickball, dodge ball, basketball, volleyball, four-squares even just tag... if it involved roughing it up with the boys and running around, I was there! Once I hit the fourth grade (the youngest you could be to try out for the school sports teams) I was the first in line for basketball and volleyball tryouts. I made it on both teams every year till I was a senior in high school. I even played soccer for 5 years at the same time.

My senior year in high school was all about taking it easy and relaxing and this is where my troubles started.

I decided to not play sports that year (2000) and luckily I was able to maintain my weight at 115 lbs. without really doing anything... until I hit college. Between going to classes to study Marine Biology and Hawaiian Studies and working a couple of jobs, my weight started to get out of control. I didn't really realize it until about 2004 and I still cannot remember what brought it to my attention. By then I had already gained about 30 lbs from high school, putting me at about 150 lbs. Even though I realized I gained a lot of weight, I didn't change any of my behaviors. Sure I tried diets here and there, but nothing really stuck or worked. This went on for the next several years until September of 2008. I was weighing in at about 176 lbs. and
THAT WAS MY WAKE UP CALL! I refused to reach the 180's so I decided right then and there that I needed to change something.

On September 17, 2008, I came across My Food Diary (MFD), read about it and decided to give it a try. I've done the Weight Watchers thing before and I hated keeping track of points not because it was tedious, but because I didn't know how to calculate them when I went to the grocery store. Since MFD was all calorie based I figured I could do it. I signed up and made a promise to myself that I would at least stick it out until the end of the year - no matter what! Well, 7 months and 30 pounds later, here I am. I've come to learn that this is not a "diet" and rather a lifestyle change and I can't believe how easy it has been to get healthy and fit again. Today, I'm kicking myself in the butt for not doing it sooner!

Friday, April 3, 2009

MFD entry 55

This post was copied from an entry on My Food Diary (MFD) during my pre-blogging days. Back then, I used the forums on MFD as my daily 'blog'. Just wanted to get my entire journey in one place.
April 3, 2009
Just completed Lean circuit 1 and I can't believe how sore I am... only one hour after I exercised! I thought it was going to be a repeat kind of like the Burn circuit (combining upper and lower body moves at the same time) but NOOOOOO WAAAYYYYY!!! Lean circuit 1 focused on only two upper body parts: biceps and triceps. It combined it with different lower body exercises, but my arms were so tired. The exercises just alternated between biceps and tris for almost 10 sets!

I thought I was going to miss lifting heavy in the Push phase, but I'm so looking forward to this new Lean phase. Throw in a stricter diet and I think I can see amazing results!

Okay so I starting my last month of CLX and I already scheduled all my workouts for P90X. I CANNOT WAIT TO START!!! Right now I'm scheduled to start on May 7. After experiencing all phases on the CLX program, I decided I'm going to change up my P90X program a little.

In CLX, the first and third phases you lift heavy enough to fatigue by 10 - 12 reps and the second phase you lift heavier to fatigue at 6 - 8 reps. I really like this idea. Well I know in P90X you have the option to lift 8 - 10 reps to bulk and 12 - 15 reps to lean out. I think for phase 2 of P90X I'm going to lift to 8 reps but phase one and three I'll take it all the way to 12 - 15.

That way I kind of alternate between leaning out and adding some serious muscle.



(I still love CLX, don't get me wrong!)

Update on my weight:

Current weight (04/03/09): 143.4
Starting weight (09/17/08): 176.4
Goal weight: 120ish


Thursday, April 2, 2009

MFD entry 54

This post was copied from an entry on My Food Diary (MFD) during my pre-blogging days. Back then, I used the forums on MFD as my daily 'blog'. Just wanted to get my entire journey in one place.
April 2, 2009
60-day ChaLean Extreme update:

What can I say? I LOVE this program. When I first started it, I was a little skeptical and unmotivated but I promised myself I would give it my all for at least three months - just one round of CLX. When I started to get to week 3 and 4 of the program and it was obvious I had gotten stronger, that's when I realized I really liked it. I posted my 30 day measurements and was stunned to see all the negative numbers despite the scale barely moving. Besides my weekly weigh-ins on Fridays, I don't take any other measurements until the start of the month. I had to resist the urge to take my measurements sooner than day 60 this past month because I was so excited to know how I was doing. The scale did move down a bit more than the first phase of the program, but I do think it's because I upped my aerobic exercise a little by trying to take daily walks before I hit the weights in the evening. Again, my diet in the Push phase could have used some major help... way too much carbs and not enough protein... so I'm really looking to "bringing it" during the Lean phase. This is the phase that you're suppose to see the most results in so I'm hoping it holds true to me.

I start the Lean phase today and I was so excited to get getting earlier this week that I wanted to wake up early today to sample Lean circuit 1. But I was so tired last night there was no way I could get up an hour earlier to exercise. I cleared my schedule for tonight and can't wait to try the Lean phase... from what I've heard, it's a whole different world of muscle exhaustion and I can't wait! :)

On a side note, over the past several days I have been analyzing my charts off of MFD as well as some of my own charts since November, trying to find a pattern or correlation between: my Friday weekly weigh-ins vs. diet vs. exercise vs. type of exercise vs. daily gross calories vs. daily net calories vs. carb % vs. fat % vs. protein %. After spending several days looking over charts, putting all this information into one chart in excel and color coding each section based on the amount of weight I lost that week... NOTHING! There is absolutely no direct correlation between these things. A couple of weeks in December I ate between 1100 - 1350 net calories and I had only lost like half a pound for both those weeks. Jump to a couple of weeks in January and I ate at 1200 - 1600 net calories and dropped 2 pounds for each of those weeks! BUT, I had the complete opposite weeks as well... ate 1200 - 1600 and didn't lose anything.

It really just goes to show that there is nothing terribly scientific about losing weight and getting healthy... just eating properly and maintaining an active lifestyle really is the "magic pill" everyone is looking for. In fact last night my boyfriend and I were talking before bed and he told me that what I'm doing with this whole weight-loss journey and lifestyle change is truly amazing (this is the first time he's said anything like this about my weight-loss... it made me feel so good). He doesn't think he'd ever have the dedication and discipline to do something like this. He's not overweight at all, but he's always wanted to build and put on some muscle mass, but never has been able to do it because he gives up a month or two into the program*. Anyway, I told him that looking back at the last 7 months, I can't believe how far I've come and the type of progress I've made... sure there's been ups and downs and a lot of hard work and frustration went into losing the first 30 pounds, but looking back, it seemed fairly "easy". Just need to take one day at a time and just realize that what I do today will make a difference tomorrow. I really felt like kicking myself in the behind for not doing this sooner in my life!

This time around, I really feel like I am making a lifestyle change and I get excited just planning out my exercises for the week! If I have a weekend or a couple days were I don't get active, I start getting antsy and need to schedule in a workout... I LOVE THIS FEELING! :)

Just need to keep on keeping on!

*This morning my boyfriend said he's really going to think about lifting weights again... I've inspired him to and he can see the progress I've made and now believes that it is possible for anyone (plus, I have the ChaLean Extreme program and P90X sitting at home already, so why not?!). The one thing he's never changed his entire life was his diet so we both knew that's probably the reason why he didn't see results all the other times he's tried to workout. I told him if he seriously wants to start, that will give me huge motivation to start eating "like an athlete". My diet has been lacking throughout the CLX program... I eat relatively healthy, but not the right %'s of fat/carbs/protein. If he starts lifting too, then I can make sure all our meals are optimal muscle-building meals. Will keep you posted!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

About TASG

Contact Me
  • theamazingshrinkinggirl at gmail dot com

My Story

My name is Annie and I'm a 26-year-old-5'0"-tall-born-and-raised-in-Hawaii girl trying to lose the weight. I just graduated from college several years ago and I am now in the "real" world and loving it!

My visit to Moloka'i of Summer 2009

From elementary school through my entire high school life, I was always playing sports... soccer... basketball... volleyball... and was in the best shape of my life. Many people believe it's easier for me to lose the weight now since I "wasn't always fat" but I feel like that's what makes it harder for me. I was in the best shape of my life eating anything but with my 2-hour long practices, 6 days a week... almost anyone can eat anything and still be in great shape.

Anyway, once college hit I stopped being active - completely! Not even walking! - and the freedom of eating anything, anytime, anywhere caught up with me. Working two, sometimes three, part-time jobs and going to school full-time made my life B.U.S.Y! Eating out and grabbing fast-food became a part of my daily routine and before I knew it...

June 2008: Who let me walk out of the house wearing this?!

After almost 10 years of being overweight, I've had enough!

Now I take back control by eating healthy and exercising - no "magic pills" involved! Join me as I take on this new lifestyle!

April 2009: My doggie, Poki, and I just finished hiking.

What I've Done So Far...

Of course my journey is much more than what I've written, but this is a brief description of where I've come from in the last year:

Sept. '08 - Oct. '08
The number one question I get asked: what made you start losing weight? Well this is it. The picture below was taken of me in Aug. '08 and the day I saw it was the day I decided to change my life. When I made the decision to get fit and lose the weigh, the very first thing I did was look for a good workout dvd. I knew I wouldn't be comfortable going to a gym so I researched a bit and decided on Jillian Michaels' "30 Day Shred" dvd. I also bought an elliptical and these two items were the first steps for me. As far as diet, My Food Diary (MFD) really put my eating habits into perspective and I learned how to choose healthier items to eat. I worked slowly at changing my old habits and only changed one thing at a time because I wanted to make these changes permanent and last a lifetime.
End of October: 165 lbs. (down 10 lbs.)

Nov. '08 - Jan. '09
The HOLIDAY SEASON!!!! During these months, my boyfriend and I decided to make hiking a weekly thing and we've kept it up even till today. Check out my hiking blog TASG Goes Hiking.I was still continuing with "30 Day Shred" and the elliptical, and I bought another one of Jillian's sets, "The Biggest Winner" series and was rotating through the dvd's three to four times a week. In Nov. my boyfriend and I signed up for our first 13K, The Great Aloha Run, so we also started to run. I also bought the Beachbody workout program P90X but didn't start it because I wanted to lose more weight first. Diet wise I was still making my little changes and incorporating a lot more whole and clean foods and cutting out all fast-food. I started using a food scale and measuring cups for everything I ate.
End of January: 155 lbs. (down 20 lbs.)

Feb. '09 - April '09
February 16 was the date of the Great Aloha Run and we ran and completed it in 1:45:00 minutes... 13 minute miles which isn't bad at all! In Feb. I started a different Beachbody program, ChaLean Extreme (CLX). I bought it and used it before P90X because CLX is geared as a weight-loss program, where P90X is not, however I did start P90X in April after CLX. I also decided to try the "100 Push-Up Challenge": got no where near reaching 100 push ups but 30 perfect form push-ups was a lot more than the 5 I started the program with! Diet wise I have changed it up and I am trying to follow a 40 carb/30 protein/20 fat ratio diet.

Last but not least, I started this blog in April and have continued (obviously!) till today!
End of April: 145 lbs. (down 31 lbs.)

May '09 - Oct. '09
Still working hard and exercising consistently but the at-home environment was getting to me so at the end of May, the boyfriend and I joined a gym. I hired a personal trainer to help perfect my form with weight-lifting and absolutely loved the sessions. In September I made my one-year anniversary and celebrated it with a 365-mile Challenge which was a huge success! Food wise I've really tightened up my diet but it could still use a lot more improvement... constantly learning new things!
End of October: 135 lbs. (down 40 lbs)

Nov. '09 - Dec. '10
Maintained my weight-loss and exercise program but started to get frustrated with the plateau I was in.  I made a decision (a bad decision) to start the HCG diet around May and within a month I was down 10 lbs and reached a low of 127 lbs... but by the end of December I had gained it all back plus almost 20 lbs more, putting me back up at 155 lbs.
End of December: 155 lbs. (down 20 lbs.)

Jan '11 - Nov. '11
New Year = new me.  For the first half of the year I lost a total of about 5 lbs.... that's it because  I wasn't really motivated to get back into a full exercise program but I was determined to stop gaining weight.  Second half of the year I luckily got my exercise motivation back.   Fat has steadily started to fall off since I've been consistent with my workouts AND nutrition and so far I'm down 15 of the 20 lbs. regained.
End of November: 140 lbs. (down 35 lbs.)

Dec. '11 - May '12
So much has taken place during these 6 months.  Started powerlifting, ran my second Great Aloha Run, reached the "50 lbs. lost" milestone, and by the end of May, I switched my fitness goals to bodybuilding!  LOTS of work to do but so excited about it!
End of May:  126 lbs. (down 50 lbs.)

Current Goals


Mini goals to help me on the way:
down 10# at 166.4 - 10/31/08
down 15# at 161.4 - 12/03/08
down 20# at 156.4 - 01/07/09
down 25# at 151.4 - 02/02/09 and 07/31/11
down 30# at 146.4 - 03/13/09 and 09/21/11
down 35# at 141.4 - 05/14/09 and 11/09/11
down 40# at 136.4 - 09/09/09 and 12/21/11
down 45# at 131.4 - 05/12/10 and 01/25/12
down 50# at 126.4 - 5/16/12
down 55# at 121.4 -

UPDATED: 5/8/12
Blue line = actual weight 
Red line = average weight

Before and After

... or should I say Before and During

2000: Me during high school... all 115 lbs. of me!
**Notice that 115 lbs. for me isn't all that skinny... it's cause I'm short!

Sept. 2006: Gaining weight...
??? lbs.

Feb. 2008: Almost at my biggest...
??? lbs.

Sept. 2008: At my biggest and when I decided I had it!
176+ lbs.

Dec. 2008: Lost some weight but still feel like I needed a reverse-warning for that wide load.
158 lbs.

July 2009: So taking pictures underwater is the secret to making you look amazing... even when your body isn't amazing yet. This picture is not retouched and I had to post it cause DAMN, I WISH I LOOKED LIKE THAT! The bubbles and buoyancy of the water just make fat 'disappear'. BTW, this is the first time I wore a two-piece without shorts!
142 lbs.

Aug. 2009: Just got back from the gym.
137 lbs.

 Jan. 2012: Happy New Year!  Little over three years into this journey and back at my 'fighting' weight after a 20 lbs. gain at the end of 2010.
135 lbs.