Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Short and Sweet

Calories in: 11,343
Calories out: 17,153
Deficit: 5,810
/3500 = 1.66 projected pounds lost
Minutes of exercise: 298 / 4.96 hours
Pounds lost this week:.4
Total pounds lost: 35.2

If only we looked as calm as this stock image when we have too much to do. And with perfect eyebrows.

Well, it's happened. I'm officially stressed about having two writing projects, so I'm keeping this blog short. In my other writing life, I'm working on my third novel (two completed, still trying to find an agent), and the writing is flowing. And the magic of the flow shall not be interrupted!

Having worked the process of a novel before, when I find myself lost in the details of my story, I know that things are getting good. For example, the other day my husband and I were having dinner and fell into that comfortable marriage silence. He asked, 'What are you thinking about?" Me: "That Aurelius speaks Latin and Uther speaks Old English, is that what you were thinking about?"

He gave me a look like I'm from Mars. But in a good way. He knew he married a nerd.

The good news is that the balance of exercise and life is stabilizing. The numbers are off this week, but I'm also on my period which is a bitch. Damn you bloat! It's not uncommon for my weight to shoot up 1-2.5 pounds at this time and then fall off at the end. I've also rested on days when I was exhausted and set my exercise goals at 45 minutes a session instead of an hour. I also have not fasted in a week because I couldn't bring myself to do it.

I'm thinking for my sanity, I may check in every two weeks on this blog -- or possibly every three, I'll just have to see how it goes.

In the off weeks, I'm thinking about using this space to post first drafts of chapters for my new book. The elevator pitch goes: Gwen and Lance are modern scientists who time travel back to the Lost Century to weave their way into Arthurian legend.  Think 'Wicked' but instead of Elphaba and her band of animal friends, Gwen juggles opposing warlords.

What do you guys think? Up for reading some first drafts of my new project? I will take as many extra sets of eyes as I can get!

Until next time,

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Figuring Out Balance

October 8, 2019
Total Pounds Lost: 34.8
Pounds Lost This Week: 1.9

This one is an oldie but goodie

I struggled this week. Struggled between not indulging, exercising, indulging, and then exercising like a maniac to make up for indulging. A precarious pendulum swinging from one extreme to the next without finding a healthy way to hover in the middle.

I'm trying to start good habits. I am. My friends who are fit work out 5-7 times per week, so 7 hours of exercise a week is my stretch goal. And once that becomes a real habit, my body will change. When I think back to my more fit days, I  exercised 3 days a week with 1 major hike on the weekend -- so that was 5 hours of exercise a week or more. Getting into the routine is tough. I've been doing it, but have resorted to napping when Max naps to recover. Because sister, I'm tired.

I know this sounds silly, but it's really hard for me to sacrifice Max's precious nap time to my own sleeping rather than writing. But if I'm ready to cry into my dinner or snapping at my family because I'm exhausted from adapting to exercise...it's not worth it. I'll never forget in college, I was whining to my Dad on the phone how tired I was, lamenting on how to get more energy, and if I should drink more coffee. To which he replied, "if you're tired, you should sleep."

I was thunderstruck at the simplicity. And then I took a nap. The same applies now, I gotta take care of myself. Besides, my mental clarity jumps by a thousand percent when I'm rested. The world seems brighter, goals more do-able.

There's another ironic twist here: each morning I plan out 'operation wear out the baby,' to make sure Max gets enough exercise to nap and sleep well at night.

Mission accomplished.

It seems so natural to inflict exercise to the point of exhaustion on my kid, but when I'm doing it for my own health, I'm #RESISTING. There's a reason they call it working out. It's work.

It's a lot of work.  Back to the topic I wandered away from in paragraph one, I  ate too much on Friday, and then went out on Sunday on a date with the hubs and ate too much again. They say the key to sticking to a new habit is to forgive oneself after a slip and get back on board, but it's hard not to beat myself up for the slips. Imagine how much more weight I would have lost this week if I hadn't indulged at all.


But I'm human, so I move on. Keep on chugging. I don't know if I'm working too hard and indulging too hard, but I'm experimenting, trying to find that nebulous plane of existence called 'balance.' I did manage to get up twice this week at 6AM and work out. I did exercise every single day and reached my stretch goal.

On another note, the mere amount of time I spend these days thinking about my body, eating healthy and exercising is overwhelming. Of course, I want it to be a priority, but fixating to the point of obsession isn't healthy, or helping me. It's one of the reasons I think this blog helped me so much in the past -- if I could get these racing thoughts about the process out of my head and down on paper, then they couldn't bother me anymore. Still holds true. So, again, thank you to this online community for reading and keeping me going with your comments and support.

As a final note to this chapter, I splurged on a wizz-bang FitBit. I've always been a detail-oriented person and seeing everything by my numbers helps me. I have a real measure of calories in vs. calories out and it matches up for what the scale reads. All this time in the past two years I've been blaming my non-weight loss on something else. Recently, I convinced myself that I may be flirting with insulin-resistance. That's why it's so hard.

Here are the hard numbers from this week:
Calories Out: 17,827 (Exercised every day for 45 minutes - hour)
Calories In: 11,505 (~1,643 calories consumed per day average)
6,322 Calorie Deficit Net
3500 Calories per pound of fat
1.8 pounds lost - by the numbers
1.9 pounds lost - by the scale

But, again, the numbers check out, so it's not insulin resistance. I just have to work it. And I'll keep on working.

If you want to join me on my fitness apps, I'm 'bonniehorvitz' on MyFitnessPal and 'Bonnie B' on FitBit. Hope to see you there.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Not News: Being A Mom is Hard

October 1, 2019
Total Pounds Lost: 32.9
Pounds Lost This Week: +.8

Well, this is a pisser. The scale went the wrong way this week. It's more than a pisser, it's downright depressing after so much work. So many rationalizations running through my head right now, but I'll get on with this week's subject.

While sipping my coffee and watching Channel 8 news in the wee hours before Max woke up last week, Gayle (Oprah's best friend, I'll have you know) told me that moms work an average of ninety hours a week.

And I scoffed, ninety hours? Really Gayle? That can't be right. But then I did the math. I wake up between 6:30-7:00 every morning. I go to bed at 9:30 and read before I fall asleep. Generously speaking, I'm asleep by 10:30 PM. Many times it's earlier. So, on an average day I'm awake 15 hours give or take. Max is up by 7 AM and goes to sleep at 8:30. On amazing days he takes 3 hour naps, on average days it's 90 minutes.  And sometimes it's no minutes. I often cry on those days or bite a rando's head off. I think that's normal.

Anyhoo, here's the math: 
My Waking Hours: 105
Max Waking Hours: 94.5 Before accounting for naps

So, Gayle was right.

I'm one of those lucky Moms who sends my kid to preschool for two extended mornings a week, giving me twelve glorious hours to write, nerd out at the library researching my book, or sometimes (let's be honest) get a California burrito and do beached whale impressions in front of the TV while marathoning 'Killing Eve.'  So, accounting for preschool my average working hours a week is somewhere between 75-85 hours depending on how much Max naps.

Nap time has always been exclusively writing time for me, so technically, I never take a break. This worried my Mom a lot (and still does), but writing doesn't wear me out, it replenishes me. It exercises that adult part of my brain that atrophies after too many diapers and reruns of 'Llama Llama.'  (Hint to future parents, the key question to ask yourself when selecting children's TV programing is: Can I ignore it? Yes? Sweet. I often read while Max sits on my lap while watching his shows. Something for him and something for me. Plus cuddles. It works out.)

But, back to this blog, and why all this detail is important: dedicating all my 'extra' time also means that there are no hours left for exercising in a real way, so my weight has suffered. Fortunately, our neighborhood is quite walkable so I take Max for long walks / adventures 2-3 times a week to wear him out and get some exercise. And the hard truth is that's the one thing that's kept me from gaining all the weight back that I lost in 2012.

Quite a few times, I've told myself I will trade a few precious
writing hours for hardcore exercise. And I do for a few weeks, but get so down-on-my-knees tired from adapting to hard work that I cry and give up.

I'm at that crux again. For sure. I got three hardcore workouts in last week (3 hours of exercise), and the week before every single day (7.5 hours of exercise) and my resting self is beat-down tired. Like, teary tired. Like, I'm going to let this blog fade into obscurity and give up again tired. I'm still fasting two days a week and the scale went the wrong way? What's the point? Seriously.

My shitty drawings are back!

The good news is, I am figuring out how to incorporate exercise in a way that works for me. When I go to the gym I've been researching for my new book while on the exercise bike or elliptical machine. So, it's a two-for-one benefit. I also got one of those 'step' platforms so I can do step aerobics downstairs while Max naps upstairs. I'm trying, I really am. But, I will tell you, being a mom is hard. And staying healthy and exercising on top of that is even harder. Show me the love!

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

I'm back bitches!

33.7 pounds kept off since original journey in 2012.

Hi friends.

It's been awhile. In fact, it's been a long while. Six years to be exact.

A lot has happened. I quit smoking. I had a baby. I'm a stay-at-home-mom now to my now two-year-old. I wrote two novels and I'm working on a third. (third book, not baby, that is.) I'm trying to secure a literary agent and constantly resisting the urge to check my email 872 times a day to see if anyone has requested my manuscript. In that aspect of my life, I'm failing. I checked my email 873 times today even though I promised myself I wouldn't.

But I digress. This was a weight loss blog, and this is the 'where is she now' update. The bottom line is I've kept thirty pounds off of the sixty I lost in 2012-2013. Thus, I'm going with the original success rate listed at the top. Thirty off, thirty to get back to where I was when I got married. I feel like I've been on a never-ending diet since I've had my son with very little success. I've had bouts of tracking my food on MyFitnessPal, month-long flirtations with Keto and at my strongest I tried "The Metabolism Diet," which was essentially starvation I coupled with a thirty day yoga challenge. Successful, yet temporary. We all know that tune. Next, please.

In my heart of hearts, I know this journey was tough last time, but I don't ever recall it being this f*cking hard. Yes, I know I had a baby and I'm pushing forty, but to be on Keto for a month and playing with the same three pounds as the only result made me want to burst into tears every time I stepped on the scale. I was absolutely convinced something was wrong and went to the doctor to have blood work done. Nothing stood out on the results except to be careful with my blood sugar. It's not pre-diabetes, but it was teetering a little too close for comfort. The doctor gave me this advice: being a mother is hard. And to stop gaining weight.

Super helpful visit. Next, please.

Thinking back, the one thing that was missing from my habits six years ago to my habits today is this blog. This online community gave me the support, not to mention, accountability to keep it up.

So, I'm back. Between being a mom and my writing, I willingly acknowledge I may be piling too much on my plate, but I've also made a commitment to myself to make my health my priority right now. That means exercise first, book second. That's in the minutes between taking care of my son, of course. So technically he's first, exercise and diet second, book third.

Unless I get an agent of course, then all bets are off. (Oh, I hope, I hope, I hope, I hope! Pick me, pick me, pick me, pick me!)

So here's the next update: I have found something that I started a few weeks ago that seems to be working -- intermittent fasting. I've been doing the 5:2 program where I eat regular calorie restriction of net 1400 calories a day five days a week and two days I do a super-low calorie fast. So, I have a 600 calorie shake late morning two days a week and don't break the fast until the next morning.  So far, five pounds have come off, and I need the support to keep going.

I'll see you next week with another update!


p.s. As a fun trip down memory lane, here's my original post at this time in my journey the first time:

Sunday, August 18, 2013

An honest review of the diet clinic

August 18, 2013
40 pounds to go

Imagine this: 457 days ago (a little over a year and a quarter), uncomfortable, a little desperate and wide-eyed I walked into a “medical weight loss clinic.”  I had gotten a certificate from our newspaper’s Groupon spinoff, so I patted myself on the back for making a step towards good health and only investing $20!

I filled out an intake form with the normal blah blah questions, does cancer run in your family, known allergies, and further medical history etc etc.  Then came the moment of truth – leading me over to the scale and my heart dropped.  Next, I was shuffled into a patient room where normal intake procedure continued.  A huge BMI chart shaded in different colors depending on if you fell into “underweight,” “optimal,” “obese,” or “severely obese”  adorned the wall, and I watched a grossly overweight nurse find my height on the chart (a shrimpy 5’4) a run her finger along the axis for way to my weight which was literally on the border between “obese” and “severely obese.”  Severe?  Are you shitting me?  

She then started grilling me on what I typically eat in an average day / week to determine my eating habits.  On a final note, she took my blood pressure and then left the room while I awaited the Doctor.

This is the point when I started crying.

The doctor came in, a gloriously thin woman who had a kind face.  One that registered shock once she realized I had been sitting there for 10 minutes sobbing my eyes out.  She was gentle and went through her suggested plan.  She gave me all sorts of useful basic tools that I had been completely ignorant of before this point: my resting metabolism, target calorie intake per day, and breakdown of how many servings of each food group I should have (i.e. 3 cups of veggies, 4 carb, 2 fat exchanges, 6 meat).  She stressed that I should try and start walking everyday (the usual ‘exercise, just try it!’ approach that is always in one ear and out the other).  I gathered myself between tears and said “I’m sure you have lots of girls crying in your intake office.”  And the look back said, “um, no.”

This was all the good stuff.  I felt like I had a plan.  But we weren’t done.  Next came the discussion of what dose of Phentermine I would like to use and whether it would be a 1 day dose, or take the dose 3 times over the day with meals.  She mentioned to only drink 1 cup of coffee with it to see how I felt.  I said, "1 day dose, I’m too lazy to remember over the course of the day."   She then said good night and the nurse came back in and administered a vitamin B12 cocktail shot into my ass which burned like a mother fucker.

That night I kept running to the bathroom with terrible diarrhea from the shot.  My tummy hurt.  I was whiney. 

The next morning, I got up and thought, “here we go.”  I popped my first pill and downloaded myfitnesspal.  (I would start logging the next day)  I drank a cup of coffee then got ready for work.  I felt fine, and then once I arrived everything started glowing.  I shit you not, it was like everything suddenly developed an aura.  And I was thirsty.  So desperately thirsty.  I remember it was a Friday because I had my weekly department meeting at 9AM and I was hoping my staff wouldn’t notice I was licking my lips like an overdosed meth addict and was consciously trying to slow down my speech.  All I could think of was poor Ellen Burstyn in her red dress in Requiem for a Dream.  I actually spent my breaks race-walking around the block to try and get the drug out of my system.

I was a little scared.  I pulled up Goolgle and typed in Phentermine.  It was the second drug in the infamous Fen-Phen.  It will give you a false positive for methamphetamines on drug tests because it has the same basic chemical structure.

So I was on some generic look-alike to speed.  At least, according to the Internet.  I wondered if this was what those 50’s housewives were on so they could ‘do it all.’

The next day I was grateful to have come down off my diet high.  I never took another one of those pills.

Four days later I went to the clinic for my first check-in I had lost 6 pounds.  Go me!  I had the pills in hand and said “I want to give these back, I don’t like the way they make me feel and don’t want to be on something that could potentially be addicting.”  There was a lot of bluster how they’ve never seen one of their patients become addicted to Phentermine and it really wasn’t that dangerous. I asked if she had any natural alternatives.  To which they did – Diucaps and an Accai cocktail which were considered a ‘natural appetite suppressant.”  My only interest in taking them was the Diucaps were also something that helps relieve water retention that I heard was a good mood stabilizer during ye ol’ period week.

To be quite honest I didn’t feel a huge difference between taking the natural supplements and not taking them.  I have notes in my diary that “I didn’t feel quite right.”  I stopped after 2 weeks.

The next week I went back into the doctor for my next check in.   This time, the doctor did not see me, only the grossly overweight nurse.  I got on the scale: 2 pounds lost.  Go me!  She was disappointed with my progress.  The minute I sat down in the patient room she asked me if “I was still drinking my beers.”  I said “no, I haven’t, but it was a harder week because I was on my period and had two birthday dinners to get through.”  She then launched into a speech on how beer is too caloric and how I really needed to stop drinking it.  (Hello McFly, I just told you I didn’t!)  I tried to derail her by saying again, no, I hadn’t drunk any beer and would you like to see my food diary so you can give me some tips?

It was at this point I realized I was sitting in a business, not a genuine health clinic.  This woman didn’t give a shit about me or my habits.   The mean part of me thought, ‘who are you, morbidly obese lady to lecture me on my alcohol intake when you can’t even bother to listen to me and give me any genuine tips?  Where is the goddamn doctor?”  That whole encounter still makes my blood boil.

I think I went back for 1 more week before I abandoned the clinic for food logging and my blog to keep me accountable.  Admittedly, when I did talk to the doctor, she gave me good tips on things to watch for.  She set me up with invaluable tools in my intake, and did give the suggestion for a protein snack mid morning.  And she taught me about the advantage of eating low-glycemic foods.  All the nutritional guidance was good.

Another thing I should mention: the cost to go to this diet clinic was $60-$100 per week depending on if they gave you the phentermine or natural supplements.  While, I’m sure this is a fraction of the cost of doing illegal drugs to lose weight, it gets pretty pricey for the average Joe. (I googled “what does speed cost “ for shits and giggles and probably just got flagged by the government.) 

To recap, pros and cons:
Nutritional guidance
Good tools for learning – resting metabolism, calorie intake, etc.
Weekly weigh-ins keep you accountable.

They put you on a speed look-alike
It’s expensive
It’s a business

My word of advice when approaching these clinics is to keep your caution cap on.  Ultimately, it is a business and they are there to make money.  It is not a nutritional or medical clinic who has your best health interests at heart.  The best thing is that they helped get me on the wagon to health, but I’m the one who eventually had to take the reigns and steer it for myself.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Falling off the wagon

August 10, 2013
40.5 pounds to go

Mrs. Bonnie Rebecca Bracken here.  Married and BRB I unintentionally abandoned my blog for the world of wedding events.   And I’ve ditched it just long enough that I’m a frightened bird hesitantly hopping and pecking my way back to the computer.

Who cares about calories when he got that garter off with his teeth?

I’ve still been logging my food everyday (today = day 449), even on my wedding day which consisted of potato chips and champagne for lunch.   Even on the plane ride to Hawaii which served the last living airplane meal.  I tracked the welcome Mai Tai’s, the decadent dinners and long lounging days by the pool.  I was that crazy girl who used the hotel gym (there were chilled towels!) and ran my first 5k out of cocktail guilt.  While it was a long walk from the pool to the hotel room, I’m sure the calories burned did not equate to the 3 drinks I had just consumed by the pool.  

A bloody mary does not count as a vegetable.  

The honeymoon was like a dream, I couldn’t be luckier with my sweet husband.  And we did manage to eat and drink our way through the entire island of Kauai.  But that’s what you’re supposed to do, right?  I wasn’t completely going off the rails and eating gigantic hamburgers for every meal – I tried to pick the healthy things and still consistently ate my vegetables and ate on time.  I worked out.  I got the dressing on the side.  But the alcohol – I ditched my white wine / corona light staple and tried every tropical drink on the menu.  I walked the fine line of having a consistent buzz but never a hangover for just about the entire trip.  Not all day, but some part of the day there was a buzz in there.   Near the middle of the trip I turned to Mike and said “If I had a dollar for every drink I took a picture of, we’d have a lot of dollars.”

This was my favorite.

In the middle of the trip we had a lazy day of watching the Discovery Channel, eating room service and endless toffee chocolate covered macadamia nuts a warning bell went off in my mind: “Old habits have returned!  Danger! Danger!”  It only took 2 weeks and here I was sneaking extra chocolates.  A year and 2 months of solid work and discipline, and 2 weeks is all it took to fall off the wagon.  Then run to the swanky gym for my first 5k ever.

When we got back to San Diego, I had that fateful moment of stepping on the scale after the honeymoon.  I squeezed my eyes shut and then looked down.   I had gained 8 pounds.  Granted, some of it was period weight (sorry Mom & Dad, no honeymoon baby) but I was shocked.  I knew I hadn’t been great, but I didn’t think I was that bad.  Eight fucking pounds??  Holyshitsticks!  You couldn’t get me off the elliptical machine or the treadmill these past 2 weeks.  I’ve taken 5 of them off which puts me back at playing with these endless 3 pounds for what feels like months.

I’ve realized in the past few weeks that my body has reached a happy medium.  At my current rate of exercise (2ish times a week) and net calorie goal (1400) this is the body I will have.  It’s a good one – at the cusp of a size 10 and healthy. 

We looked good and burned calories!

However, my ultimate goal is 40 pounds less than this (gasp) because I want hit that 100 pounds lost number.  I’d also like to know what it feels like to have a flat belly and fat-less thighs.   It’s my stubborn nature that says “well, I said I was going to do it, so goddamnit I’m going to finish no matter how long it takes.”

But what will it take to finish?  While I have good habits now, I know I’m going to have to take it to the next level of a little more exercise and netting out little less calories.  (Probably 1200)  Which means realistically I have to exercise at least 400-500 calories off a day and only eat 1400-1500 calories.  Groan.  Even though it doesn’t seem like much starting that good habit is about as enticing as an alligator eating my eye.   And knowing it took me a solid 6 months to really get used to the level I’m comfortable with now makes it even less appealing.

Of course, my mind has dabbled with lose-weight-quick scenarios.  Just get this off of me.   Google-ing “lose 30 pounds fast” and getting lost in the internet pages of extreme dieting.  Juice fasting.  Marathon training.  Joining a gym.  A personal trainer.  Pills.  “Supplements.”  P90X.  Brazilian Butt lift.  (I own both)  The regular black hole of the diet industry that is alluring but not sustainable.  Double groan.  I’ve been at this threshold for what feels like too many times.   Do not get sucked in!  Resist!  The fact is I’m either going to start getting up early and working out or forcing myself after work until it no longer feels like a punishment.  I own a pair of legs, I just have to start using them more.  The key is to just start and not over-think it.   Here I go.  It's time to create a new normal.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Celebrate the little victories

May 26, 2013
38.4 pounds to go

Last Saturday was my 1- year health birthday and in honor of day 365 I’ll make a walking-cliché statement: it’s not a sprint it’s steady climb to the top.   Turtle and the hare.  Long term sustainability.  Find something that feels like a habit not a punishment.   Stick with it.  Don’t give up.  Insert additional platitude here.

There is no way to sprint to the finish line with weight loss, unless you have the fat sucked off with a vacuum cleaner (i.e. liposuction) and I can personally attest to my own impatience with the “this is taking forever” (groaaan) feelings.  Since it’s happening so gradually sometimes it can feel like nothing.  And when it feels like nothing, it’s easy to give up.  Then inevitably start another sprint a few weeks later and drool over someone else’s long-term results.

I think one of the most important tools of long-term success is to celebrate the little victories.  Find the changes in your body that inspire joy, as big or little as it may be.

Here are my little victories:

1) November 7, 2012 I woke up and realized my thighs no longer chaffed when I walked.  (Yes, I wrote down the date) This is the one major thing that I look forward to every time I get in shape.  No more finagling pantyhose or baby powder with skirts and dresses.  I can just wear them and be comfortable.

2) I have to buy a new belt because I ran out of notches.  I always wondered why belts came in small medium and large! 
There are so many terrible jokes I can think of to insert here that I have to restrain myself.

3) People wear belts to hold their pants up.  I now have to do that.  So belts aren’t just an accessory?

4) Two words: skinny jeans.  I have two pairs from college.  I got into the first one in December.  Commence prancing.

5) Additional “I’m in the pants” dances.  I had several old pairs that hung in my closet for years and I’ve been slowly shrinking out of them.

6) I can tuck my shirt in without a muffin top.

7) My boobs are smaller.  Shrunk down 2 sizes so far. (I know for most women, this would make them sad but I come from German stock.  Even when I’m skinny they’re huge!  I’ve always said if I could find a way to share I would.)

8) Making it up the stairs without wheezing.

9) Using a hotel towel and it wraps all the way around so I look cute and not blobby.  This is one of my favorite victories.

10) I had to throw away all my size 16 pants.  Even with a belt there’s no hope.  I remember a year ago when they were getting uncomfortably tight. (Although I did keep one pair for final ‘after’ pictures.)

11) One of my favorite summer shirts is so loose I looked down and realized I could see my toes since it’s so baggy.  This is now starting to happen with the next size down.  Need new shirts!

12) No more baggy arms that keep waving after I stop.  (Ladies, you know what I’m talking about)

13) Thigh cellulite significantly reduced.  This is one of those things that is nearly impossible to get rid of no matter how hard I try.  It’s a girl thing.

14) I’m cold all.the.time.  Thank god summer is here.

15) One word: collarbone.

16) I let people take pictures of me again. 

17) I can go into any store and try on clothes.  Skinny stores tend to cut off at size 10-12. (Here’s looking at you Ambercrombie.)

18) I can cross my legs comfortably.

19) I can sit Indian style.

20) I can cross my arms without pushing my boobs up to my chin.

21) I can hug my knees to my chest.

22) I can see muscle tone on my calves and arms.  Tummy, you’re next!

23) It’s easy to trim my toenails.  (To echo Louis C.K. the worst part of my day is no longer putting on my socks.)

24) I can race you.

25) I’ve finally experienced a runner’s high.  I always thought those guys were lying.  If I had seen a glimpse of myself a year ago preparing to go running I would have laughed.  Yeah right!  Running.   That’s stupid.

26) I went bikini shopping for the first time without wanting to stab someone.

27) My body fat percentage is in an acceptable range. (Although, according to BMI charts I’m still not there which confuses me.)

28) I’ve lost 7 inches in my waist.

29) My favorite – I have a pair of sleeping boxers with an elastic waistband and I’ve shrunk out of the elastic circumference.  They literally won’t stay up but I can’t seem to part with them because my brother gave them to me.

That's elastic.

Not everything happens all at once, but I notice small things as gradually as they happen and it makes me feel pretty amazing.  Hail the conquering hero!

Short and Sweet

Calories in: 11,343 Calories out: 17,153 Deficit: 5,810 /3500 = 1.66 projected pounds lost Minutes of exercise: 298 / 4.96 hours Pounds...