Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Bonnie and Clyde

So my daughter got me into watching the A&E Mini Series Bonnie and Clyde on t.v. And with that, had to explain a lot of history and such and so forth regarding the story.

So just in case you don't know - they end up dead where the police ambush them and dump tons of ammo into their vehicle and they both die. SO it begged the question; if this was back in the 1930's, no GPS, no satellites, no cell phones, no internet, etc. - - how did the police track them and know where they would be? The answer is THEIR HABITS. Bonnie and Clyde had established a rather predictable pattern of visiting their folks and how they traveled and the police predicted where they thought they'd be, and ambushed them.  (I'm greatly simplifying it here, but you get the idea)

Therefore, let us be aware, that habits are as old as time. Our habits can make or break us. They can sometimes make us predictable. If someone was going to make an assumption or prediction about you - based on your habits - would it be good or bad ?

As always, make champion choices,

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A Goal Without a Plan ...

You've heard it said before, a goal without a plan, is just a wish.  BUT do you believe that?

Just writing it down right now: A couple of simple, clear decisions that will move you in the direction you want to go tomorrow IS often; all that your plan needs... 

No one ever wrote down a plan to be fat, broke, stupid, lazy, unhappy, and mediocre. Those are the things that happen to you when you don't have a plan.

As always, make champion choices,

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Doctor Adventures

So I have three medical conditions that I deal with. These conditions need monitoring, and they make my weight loss adventures quite slow and challenging. Here are the conditions:

(1) Anemia (2) PCOS and (3) Hypothyroidism.

Because of these 3 conditions, they take my blood regularly and monitor things like iron, testosterone levels (problem I deal with because of PCOS) and thyroid levels, etc. I really oh really hate having to get blood drawn because I have skinny veins that roll a lot, and it is an ordeal. Very few people actually get it right on the first stick, so I usually end up with them having to get someone else and several pokes/sticks and a bruised arm or arms/hands to show for the trouble.

Recently, I went to do the blood thing, as usual. I am a good girl and follow orders so even though it is an inconvenient irritation, I do it because my dr. needs those numbers to monitor my health. This last time I went, I waited well over an hour. Fast forward a few days later and the dr. calls and says your lab results are 'abnormal' but we can't discuss it over the phone, come in for a visit. Had to wait a week to even get the appointment.

So today I go in for that appointment. Doctor says thyroid levels are wonky and he wants to change my medication. Okay fine, no big deal. Then he tells me that the lab messed up and they did not check everything they were suppose to check and only tested thyroid and therefore I have to go draw blood AGAIN. Oh yes, I'm just thrilled at the wasted time I spent there before, so eager to do it again, note the sarcasm in my voice.

So they shuffle me off to the lab on another floor, I sign in, wait for an eternity. They finally call my name, I go to the window and she says 'are you fasting?'. Um, no I am not - I wasn't suppose to draw blood today, I ate breakfast. She says 'oh okay, let me call dr. to see if that is really necessary'. So I wait and wait and wait some more. Then she calls me back to the window to tell me that yes I do indeed need to be fasting. Gee, it would have been nice to know that BEFORE I wasted all this time waiting, ya think? Then GET this ... she says to me, and I quote 'so you'll just have to come back in tomorrow morning when you're fasting, unless of course you want to change your answer'. Um, say what? She was dead serious. OMG, why on Earth would I LIE about my health to lab professionals or a doctor. I have no interest or desire to have false results and have to do this yet again. I cannot believe she actually asked me if I wanted to change my answer.

So, yes, I will go to do blood work tomorrow, but you better believe it will be somewhere different.

Sorry for the rant, this just annoyed me to no end. But I'm okay - I'm not dying or anything ... I don't have any terminal illness and in the big picture, I'll be okay - so I have much to be thankful for.

Choices, people, we have choices. And I am greatly appreciative that I can choose a different lab, and if need be, a different doctor.

As always, make champion choices,

Friday, October 11, 2013

Back By Popular Demand...

Back by popular demand, one of my poem creations:

'Start By Eating'

You must eat this, don't eat that .. too many carbs, but not enough fat.
Try this superfood, juice for your life ... cook all meals, like a good little wife.

Cardio is the answer, weights are the key ... eat six meals, no wait, only three.
Running is great, but not for you ... now go for intervals, in all that you do.

What is your heart rate, what is your pace?  I'd rather walk, then join a race.
Hows your cholesterol? How's your BP?  Now go tell me, the color of your pee.

Drink your water, but not too much.  Eat your veggies and fruits and such.
Avoid all soda, you know it's so bad... and sugar explains every ill you've had.

Gluten is the devil, or is it just wheat?  Now count those calories and all that you eat.
Salt is horrible - but sea salt is great?  Which leads to a whole other lively debate.

You're eating to much!  You don't eat enough!  And aim for abs, to be totally buff.
Skinny is now out, Curves are now in.  Do you eat for health or starve to be thin?

Do you follow the crowd, or lead the way? Or, do you just follow the diet of the day?
Do you read so much, you just get stuck?  Analysis Paralysis just breeds the bad luck.

Do something, or anything, but move your feet.  And by all means, if you're hungry, EAT!
Willpower is overrated. Motivation is fleeting.  If you want to lose weight, start by eating!

As Always, Make Champion Choices,

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Thursday, October 10, 2013

Passive-Aggressive Fat Shaming

Trolls, yeah, hate them.  We all know the trolls who gallivant all over Facebook fitness pages and blogs, spew their venom, ignite social media fights, insult and agitate ... yeah, they're easy to spot.  They are ugly. They are so very easy to see coming.  Their fat shaming tactics are rather obvious and simple to ignore, because you know that their motive is ill-guided and that their attacks are not really personal towards you anyway, it's just grandstanding looking for attention.  You can keep your guard up with trolls, because they are so obvious.

But what about the attacks to your self-esteem that are not so obvious?  The countless images you see day in and day out that subtly suggest you are not quite perfect.  The headless women with abs of steel with text that indicates if you just tried a little harder, maybe you'd look like that.  They don't come out and say anything is wrong with you - - they leave you to draw your own conclusion.   But human nature tends to compare.  Why do I have cellulite and she doesn't?  When will I ever have a thigh gap?  Why won't my abs cooperate?  Well it must be because my diet isn't clean enough, or I don't work out long enough or hard enough - or simply - I am not enough.   I dare you to stop comparing yourself to others, especially strangers and photo-shopped models ... and START comparing yourself to the only person that matters anyway - YOU!

I hate tag lines like 'go hard or go home'.  You know what, sometimes showing up is half the battle.  I'd hate for someone to skip a fun class or bypass the gym simply because they didn't have it in them to hit it hard. Sometimes, we just need to put one front in front of the other, sometimes we just need to show up.

Guard your eyes, guard your ears and protect your self-worth.  Subscribe to media that encourages and motivates; not humiliates.

Be careful who you let into your psyche.  Trolls are easy to evict, ban and block.  But what about your 'Best Facebook Friend' or 'Favorite Blogger' who continuously posts unrealistic pictures, tag lines and images of bodies that very few can achieve.  Their intent may not be ill, but the passive-aggressive fat shaming can still have damaging effects.

Stand your ground, clean up your diet in more ways than one.   Not all trolls are ugly.

As always, make champion choices,

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Are you a vacationer, prisoner or a sponge?

Alright people - I'm not usually one for labels, but let's give this one a try, okay? With regard to how you are living your life: Are you a vacationer, prisoner or a sponge? 

(1) If you're a vacationer, you are happily going through life without a care in the world, always out for a good time, lookin' for the party. The problem is, you're not taking responsibility for anything either, after all, you're on vacation. Not worried about responsibility for your community, your body, your health, your family, your job, nothin'! This may be all fun and games in the moment, but as you probably already know, it will eventually catch up with you, and you really will WISH you had taken more responsibility for the things that matter. 

(2) If you're a prisoner, you are living your life in hell, within your own prison, that you have created with walls and bars, because you are punishing yourself ... for what? I have no idea, God only knows - - but you are perpetually and continuously living out a punishment, that is self-inflicted, serving a life sentence. The good news is - there is hope for parole. The only catch is that you are not only a prisoner, you are also the jailer .. and the only one who can set you free is YOURSELF. Break free from these limiting walls you've put up in your life, stop punishing yourself, before the life sentence becomes a death sentence. 

(3) If you're a sponge ... you are soaking it all in. You are embracing life and enjoying the journey, cherishing the moments, learning lessons, and expanding to be better with every ounce of tears shed or laughter emitted. You are taking responsibility for the things you know you should; and you are not in anybody's prison, especially not your own. Soak it up baby ... life was meant to be devoured. 

So do tell - are you a vacationer, a prisoner or a sponge? If you don't like your answer. Change it. 

As always, make champion choices, 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Calorie Counting

Do You Try To Control Every Calorie?

I struggle with this because I believe tracking my food helps me greatly with accountability to myself and makes it more 'real' what I am putting in my mouth.

But a famous health coach says that one of the things she used to be so guilty of was trying to control every calorie she ate. She'd give herself certain food rules she had to follow (such as no eating after 7 PM, no eating fat, no eating out, no eating certain types of foods, no eating after she ate 1200 calories for the day, etc.). She says what she didn't realize is that when you focus on what you CAN'T makes you want to do it MORE (by the way...this is a human psychology thing, NOT a willpower or self-control thing).

She believes that success lies in focusing on what you CAN do, not what you cannot. It makes you feel empowered and liberated (as opposed to we are accustom to feeling when it comes to our weight loss plans). The truth is, eating out or eating after 7 PM isn't our's what we do when we feel deprived and restricted on our plans.

Me personally, I find this somewhat true.  I know so many people who say that It is during the times we feel deprived and restricted that we binge, decide that all this work isn't worth it, and throw in the towel. The key to weight loss success is avoiding all that, therefore the real key to long-term results on your weight loss plan is to avoid feeling deprived and restricted. What’s ironic is that most programs out there make you feel deprived and restricted, so much so that we’ve literally come to expect it. We’ve trained ourselves to believe that losing weight has to be hard. We feel like if we aren’t busting our butts and stressing ourselves out…we aren’t going to ever see results. And that is EXACTLY why hardly anyone is able to lose weight and keep it off in the long-term. According to her that is.

I know for me (Debra here) ... that if I say I need 7 servings of fruits/veggies, that makes less room for other junk.  If I have to have 64 ounces of water, there is less room for soda. You get the idea.  Focus on what you SHOULD have and CAN have, and not so much of what is a no-no food.  I don't believe in assigning emotions to food or qualities like 'allowed' or 'not allowed'.  I don't eliminate entire food groups just for the sake of doing so.  I'm not Vegan or Paleo or Gluten Free or Pescatarian or anything else... I am just me ... someone who pays attention to how food makes her feel and makes choices based on that information.   And as for me, I am still going to track.  I don't leave my bank account up to chance, I track what I spend so I can see the big picture and know what is going on.  Same is true for my diet.  Even though I hate that word diet.  Really, it's just what we eat.  Truth of the matter is - everybody is on a dang diet because everybody eats.  If not, you're dead.

~SO HERE IS A JOURNAL PROMPT~  {Yes, I highly encourage journaling, as well as tracking}
In the past, have you tried to control every calorie you consumed? Do you give yourself certain food rules you had to follow? What ended up happening when you did? Do you feel like losing weight HAS to be hard? Where do you think this idea came from? How do you think it is impacting your ability to lose weight? How could you start letting go of this belief? Why do YOU think no one is able to keep weight off in the long-term? Have you noticed that when you focus on what you CAN'T just want to do it even more? How has focusing on what you can't do impacted your goal of losing weight? What do you usually do when you feel deprived and restricted? Do you binge? Throw in the towel? Feel like all this work isn't worth it? What would it look like if you stopped focusing on restricting yourself and started focusing on all the healthy choices you have? How would would focusing on what you CAN do make you feel? How do you think it would relieve those feelings of deprivation? What are some things you could infuse into your plan today that would make you feel more empowered and free (as opposed to deprived and restricted)?

As always, make champion choices,

Adapted from source: Lauren Wardell

Friday, September 20, 2013


Confession:  I suck at housewifery.  Yes, I totally made up that word.  How is it possible that I was once able to run an entire organization, write training manuals and teach database design... yet I cannot seem to keep up with laundry?  I'd blame it on the four children that have invaded my brain power, but honestly, I sucked at laundry before I ever had kids.

Suzie Homemaker I am not.  Betty Crocker, not even close.  I can read. I can follow instructions. Therefore, I can follow a recipe and usually produce something edible, but it is usually out of necessity, not pleasure.  I will never be one of those folks who make up decadent dishes and experiment in the kitchen and cherish the thought of home-made pies.  Yeah, not me at all.  Buy me some pumpkin bread from Starbucks and I am thrilled.  We can bond over a little green straw in my frappe.

I also believe that Pinterest is going to be the death of me. I see all those amazing photos of clever moms with their perfectly orchestrated lunches with properly balanced nutrition .... and here I am jumping up and down because I actually remembered to put money on their cafeteria accounts.  I see images of organized closets and cute book shelves, and back pack areas neatly planned for shoes and what not.  Here I am thrilled if the door to the coat/shoe closet is actually closed.

I actually do have a job:  a part-time job I work from home.  I work for a non-profit organization dealing with foreign exchange students.  The pay is minimal, but it keeps me from focusing on dust bunnies and beds that should be made.  It gives me flexibility, which when all is said and done, is what I need.  Not flexibility to do morning yoga poses (although I probably should) ... but flexibility to be the one who sits in the carpool lane and picks up my fabulous children from their elementary school.  ALL three of them.  It also gives me the flexibility to homeschool my teenage daughter ... because public school would be the death of her spirit for sure.

So, while I may suck at housewifery, I love the mom part of it all.  I love hearing about their day, stressin' over homework and teaching Algebra.  Well, not really, but let's just pretend that part is true. I love playing with my kids, and exercising with them and wearing them out.  I love putting them to bed at night and praying for them constantly. I don't scrapbook very well, but I do silly and fun like a genius. I get in the water. I go down the slide. I go tubing in the river. I laugh at their jokes and gush at their art. I may suck at finding all the Chess pieces, but I am great at finding TIME.  I may suck at making pancakes, but I am great at making mini-van memories. I never went to nursing school but I can kiss a boo boo with the best of them.  I'll never be the crafty super mom who plans meals a month in advance, but I'll definitely make sure they don't starve to death.

So if you come over to my house and step on a Lego, please don't sue me.  I'll pay for you to get a foot massage and buy you a Starbucks.  And as we open our little green straws ... I'll smile and giggle about how much I love being a mom.

As Always, Make Champion Choices,

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Confessions of a Freaky Eater

So I have not been the best blogger.  Inspiration hits, and then it doesn't.  But I am busy raising kids and enjoying life.  I have something most people would call [Selective Eating Disorder] and joined a great group of folks on FB that share a similar fate.   I'm working on it, little by little.  I can try a few things here and there, whereas I never would before.  I now eat scrambled eggs, yay me!  I've also added some fruits to my diet.  Still working on the veggies, kinda, really, not so much honestly - - lol !  God bless Smoothies, that's all I can say :)

Here is a poem I wrote a long time ago that kind of talks about how I am ... thought I'd share.  It just makes me so happy that I have found other people out there in the world, all shapes and sizes and walks of life, that are kind  of like me.

Here is a poem I wrote a long time ago, I've actually made progress since then (a little), but thought maybe some can relate ...

Confessions of a Freaky Eater

Take a peek-a-boo glance, into the interesting life …
Of a picky-eating mom and happily married wife.
I refuse to be ashamed, of the way that I am …
and why do you care - if I love jelly, but not jam.

I adore peanut butter, and I eat a ton of nuts …
but can't stand veggies, no if's – and's – or butts.
I'm a chicken finger fool, as long as they're fried -
but you better not spill any sauces on the side!

Tomatoes are forbidden, yet somehow I like chili –
& I know other folks, just think that's really silly.
Hamburgers are okay – if plain and totally dry …
& DON'T scrape off the cheese – just don't even try!

I do love my oatmeal – and can enjoy tuna fish -
but of course, never together, not in the same dish.
My drinks must have ice, but no lemon in my tea -
& even though, I love the smell –
I cannot stand black coffee.

I hate pasta and rice – & like very little bread,
and truth be told – I prefer plain pancakes instead.
I hate the smell of eggs, but can eat French Toast…
and since I hate to cook, I am not the best host.

I never dine on Pizza – or Italian food of any kind …
I never eat Chinese; the smell alone, makes me blind.
Forget about Mexican; those rice and beans are gross!
No chips or salsa for me,
not even the smallest dose.

No salads for this lady. No casseroles – no quiche.
And if I say " no thanks"; I really mean it – SHEESH!
Now I do love bananas, and apples and oranges too -
and I might eat some grapes, but only just a few.

Now this is just a "taste"; or a sample of who I am;
a gal who hates hot dogs – but doesn't mind spam.
If you understand me,GREAT,but if you don't, oh well!
I just pray you're never plagued ...
-- - with such sensitivity
to texture & smell.

Written by: Debra Sue Higginbotham

As always, make champion choices,
Debra Sue

Thursday, May 30, 2013

News to my ears...

I saw this posted as someone's status on Facebook. It spoke volumes to me. 

You don’t have to be flexible. You don’t have to be able to put your foot behind your head or even touch your toes. You don’t have to be able to hold yourself up on your hands upside down. You don’t have to commit hours every day in silent devotion. You don’t have to do anything, except be yourself. If you can breathe, you can practice yoga, and you can gain the benefits of a strong capable body, calm and focused mind, and be ridiculously happy. The more you practice the better you feel! 

Yes, it is high time this mama found herself a new yoga class to try. 

As always, make champion chioces, 

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Oh to be a Yogi

So who are my yogi yoga buddies? Who loves Yoga? Who does it and has success with it. I've tried it a few times, with no success at all. One time I tried a HOT Yoga class and nearly passed out from the heat. Another class had so much up and down and up and down from the floor to standing, that I got dizzy and felt ridiculous. I've often said I think I'm too fluffy for yoga, lol. 

However; I just spent a ridiculous amount of time on Pinterest and found all sorts of yoga articles and how they claim that various yoga poses can solve a myriad of problems from stress, to anger, to depression, to weight loss, to skin problems ... they even had yoga solutions for growing longer hair and glowing skin. Some that peaked my interest were those that claim to help alleviate lower back pain, neck pain and migraines. So is this all hogwash hooey or is there some validity to it? 

I am so uncoordinated, and still fluffy, not too sure I'm yoga material ... but that is probably just my insecurity showing colors. 

I think I am going to investigate this further and try out some different yoga classes. In case anyone is interested, here is a link to my Yoga board on Pinterest. 

I would love thoughts and input! 

As always, make champion choices, 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

An AHA Moment?

Do you know anybody who is in perpetual waiting mode?  Waiting for some big AHA moment to shake them to their core so that they suddenly jump into active motion and do something about the things that they know they should be doing something about?  Waiting for Monday ... I'll start again on Monday ... I'll start again when school is out ... I'll start again when school is back in session .. I'll start again on my birthday ... I'll start again on New Year's Day ... oh crap, I ate a cookie, now I have to start again on Monday ... might as well eat a whole pie since I'm starting over anyway .... well guess what ... sometimes you have to FAKE IT.

Yep, sometimes you have to fake it til ya make it.  Stop starting over.  Stop waiting for some big monumental event to make you realize what you already know.   Life is full of excuses and obstacles.  There is pain and disappointment and kids and life and husbands and jobs and money problems and grumpy friends and people who let us down and interruptions and everything else.  Fall down 7 times, get up 8.

Stop waiting for an AHA moment.  Make your own.

As always, make champion choices,

Friday, April 12, 2013

Liebster Award

Well, apparently I've been given the Liebster Award.  If you don't know what that is, don't feel bad, I had not a clue.

"Liebster" is German for "dearest" and it's a blogger to blogger award for those having 200 or fewer followers/members, so they can get more exposure. Well, I'm ALL for spreading the love, so -- it is with blushing cheeks and humble gratitude, that I happily accept.  SO a big fat Thank you to Patsy from for the great honor.  Smooches to you my friend.

Of course, there are rules, gotta love rules:

1. Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog.
2. Link back to the blogger who presented the award to you.
3. Copy and paste the award on your blog.
4. Present the Liebster Blog Award to 11 blogs of 200 followers or less, who you feel deserve to be noticed, and leave a comment on their blog letting them know they have been nominated.
5. Answer the 11 questions the blogger presented you with, create 11 questions for the blogs you are nominating, and list 11 facts about yourself.

The Obligatory Questions I Must Answer:

1. Why did you start your blog?   I want to share my journey and hopefully provide some insight and motivation along the way.  I've learned a lot through self-study and personal success, and if I can save someone else a bit of stress or information overload, then that's even better.

2. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?  I hate this question.  Sorry, Patsy... I love you dearly, but I hate this question.  I have no idea.  This would require planning, and I am terrible at that, lol.  I'm the spontaneous girl dreamer with my head in the clouds.   I hope to have finished my bach. degree in 10 years and have my personal trainer certification completed.  I also hope some of my children have flown the coop by then. LOL

3. Would you support me in my endeavor to be Queen of our country?  Absolutely.  It's nice to have connections ya know.

4. What is your dream that you're afraid to talk about but secretly think about all the time?  It's not a secret, but it is my dream to be a published author.  I don't really have any secret dreams, and any that may qualify would affect the nature of this blog and hurl it into an entirely different audience and category, tee hee.

5. Of course, because I love to read, what's your favorite book?  Can I choose the easy way out and say 'The Bible'?   No, I didn't think so.  I'm in the midst of chaos and raising 4 lovely children right now, that is the season of my life, and I fear I do not read quite the way I wish I could.  If it's not Oxygen magazine or New Rules for Lifting for Women, I'm not sure.  You know what, I'm sticking with 'The Bible' ... you can't go wrong with that one.

6. If you had total control of the world, what are 3 things that you would do immediately, aside from crowning me Queen?   (1)  Crown Patsy Queen.   (2)  Eliminate persecution of Christians.  (3)  Create universal money. (4) Find a book to read.

7. What is one goal that you achieved that you are most proud of (not counting family)?  I lost over 100 pounds.  Well, I don't like to say I lost them, let's say I released them. 

8. What are you working hardest at right now?  Does raising children count?  Well aside from that, working hard on getting some medical mysteries of mine figured out and continuing on my health journey.

9. What is the most hilarious thing that has ever happened to you?  My whole life is a comedy act it seems.  Hard to pick one thing.  My wedding was pretty hilarious.  Groom/hubby lost his glasses, I had to drive, we had a flat tire, we got lost in a graveyard in the rain trying to put flowers from my wedding on my mother's grave.  Yeah, things like that happen to me all the time, lol.

10. Finish this sentence: In 2013, I will _____________________.  I will finish my personal trainer certification.

11. They're making a movie about your life. Who would  you choose to play your part?  Meryl Streep of course.  Is there any other choice?  I think not.

The Obligatory 11 Facts I Must Provide:

1. I use to work for the FBI.
2. I love lima beans.
3. I hate pizza.
4. I collect watches.
5. I wear mis-matched socks on purpose.
6. I love bridges.
7. I've driven across the USA twice (coast to coast)
8. I can pinch you with my toes like nobody's business.
9. I've been married for 20 years to the same glorious man.
10. I have four children, but have hosted dozens of foreign exchange students and foster children over the years.  Right now we are hosting a girl from Taiwan.
11. Two of my children were spontaneously born on holidays (Halloween and Valentine's Day)

The Questions My Nominees Must Answer: 

1. Why did you start your blog?
2.  Do you have a target audience for your blog?
3. What is your overall message you want the world to hear?
4.  What do you do about haters?
5.  Do you have a Facebook Page, if so, what is it?
6.  Who would you just LOVE to interview and blog about?
7.  If you could have a celebrity endorse your blog for free, who would you pick?
8.  Who are your heroes?
9.  What is your guilty pleasure?
10. If you could have an all-expense paid convention for all of your blog followers, where would it be?
11. Would you consider writing a book based on your blog?

Now the moment you've been waiting for (well, maybe) ... my 11 nominees for this very prestigious award ... drum roll please ... and they are:

1.  The Chicken Scoop
2.  Tri To Be Fit
3.  Living The Fit Life
4.  Fabulous Fitness
5.  Dimples Does It
6.  It All Makes a Difference
7.  Living Life in Louie
8.  Chell's Journey
9.  Girls Gone Healthy
10. Eat Good 4 Life
11.  Fit for Faith

Check out their blogs, and tell them Healthy Habit Girl sent you.  Enjoy.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Start by Eating !

Healthy Habit Girl's latest creation ... enjoy !

You must eat this, don't eat that .. too many carbs, but not enough fat.
Try this superfood, juice for your life ... cook all meals, like a good little wife.

Cardio is the answer, weights are the key ... eat six meals, no wait, only three.
Running is great, but not for you ... now go for intervals, in all that you do.

What is your heart rate, what is your pace?  I'd rather walk, then join a race.
Hows your cholesterol? How's your BP?  Now go tell me, the color of your pee.

Drink your water, but not too much.  Eat your veggies and fruits and such.
Avoid all soda, you know it's so bad... and sugar explains every ill you've had.

Gluten is the devil, or is it just wheat?  Now count those calories and all that you eat.
Salt is horrible - but sea salt is great?  Which leads to a whole other lively debate.

You're eating too much!  You don't eat enough!  And aim for abs, to be totally buff.
Skinny is now out, Curves are now in.  Do you eat for health or starve to be thin?

Do you follow the crowd, or lead the way? Or, do you just follow the diet of the day?
Do you read so much, you just get stuck?  Analysis Paralysis just breeds the bad luck.

Do something, or anything, but move your feet.  And by all means, if you're hungry, EAT!
Willpower is overrated. Motivation is fleeting.  If you want to lose weight, start by eating!

As always, make champion choices,

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Weight and Finances

Weight and Finances!

I think for many people (not all) ... if they are undisciplined with their money and budget, they are also undisciplined with their diet, or managing their weight. Many people who have trouble managing their weight, also have trouble managing their checkbook. 

Things that are important require planning and patience ... you need to plan your meals, what you're going to eat, when you'll eat it, maybe prepare the food ahead of time, etc. Money is the same thing. You have to pay attention to your input and output, credits and debits. 

I think too often people suffer with the 'I want it now" disorder. They have no concept of delayed gratification. It's easier to put it on a credit card then it is to save money for it. It's easier to go through the fast food drive through then it is to go home and cook a meal. 

I also believe in the domino effect. Focus on getting ONE thing in line, and doing it well, and then that often leads to other things falling into place. You can't try to change your whole life in one day. Which leads me to the other disorder I run into a lot ... "all or nothing" disorder. You either do everything perfectly, or you say screw it, and don't even try at all. 

My mantra has always been about habits. Focus on changing one habit, replace one bad with a good. Then do another one, then another one. 

If this doesn't apply to you - then just smile and move on, not trying to step on any toes or anything. But if it strikes a nerve with you, maybe it's something to work on or think about. How do your finances look? Are you happy with your weight management? If they're both a mess, maybe they're connected to something bigger you need to work on. 

One last thought, if you have not read The Spark book. Read it. I have two copies. It is awesome. (click here for Amazon:  Spark Book)

As always, make champion choices,

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Superbowl Sunday

My day started with my 4 yr old son throwing up all over me and in my face, literally. Yeah - that was just lovely. Had to laugh -what else can you do. Then later, I started feeling crappy and got a fever. Fun times. My 7 yr old son says to me, "you know mama, that was kind of rude for James to hurl on you and get you sick". Ahhhh well my son, not rude, just part of the job. Besides, it gives me a great story to tell his girlfriends about him when he's older. 

Meanwhile, I guess there is some kind of football game on today that everyone is talking about, and something about commercials. :) Yeah, I'm not watching it, I'm watching a documentary on Alaska. I'm such a rebel that way. 

Whenever I think of Superbowl Sunday I think about my sweet hubby and when we were just newly dating, 20 years ago. It was a Sunday afternoon, and he came to pick me up at my dad's house. My dad says "hey, where are you guys going?". We answered we were going to walk around Washington, D.C. (I lived in VA). My dad was like "WHAT? It's Superbowl Sunday, aren't you going to watch the game???" ... clearly my dad was shocked. My sweet Tom just looked at him with a surprised look on his face, and said "Oh, is that today?". He had no clue. Neither did I. It's not that my husband is anti-athletics or sports or anything, and he can watch a game now and then with the best of them ... but he just hadn't been paying attention. My dad told me to hurry up and marry that man because I had a keeper. My dad was right. I did marry that man. We will celebrate 20 years of marriage in April. 

At any rate; hope you enjoyed your Superbowl Sunday - - whether you were watching television, looking at monuments or dreaming of Alaska.

Here is our wedding pic:  (Happy to say I'm smaller now than when I got married)  ;)

As always, make champion choices,

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Groundhog Dog - Different Meaning to Me

On this day in history, when I was 12 years old, my mother had a heart attack.  At that time, she was only 40 years old.  It was unheard of, really.  She had a major heart attack and was in the hospital for probably 3 weeks I think.  She was overweight and had been a heavy smoker.  This, of course, was the day she quit.  It's hard for me to remember that my parents were smokers before then, but they were.  This was in the 80's, and low-fat everything was all the rage.   So after mom got out of the hospital, we became a low-fat, low-salt household.  I remember her buying some sort of fat-free potato chips and thinking 'why bother?'! LOL   ....

She started an exercise routine after that to help rehabilitate herself.  She got to where she was walking about six miles a day.  She lost a good bit of weight, in addition to quitting smoking.

Fast forward five years, 1987 - she is 45 years old - she unexpectedly died in her sleep from another heart attack.   I was just 17 at the time.  I use to be angry and bitter that she worked so hard, only to die anyway, just 5 short years later.  However; now I realize it was a gift from God.  Her 1st heart attack was so severe, she almost died then.  All of her hard work bought her those 5 extra years, and if you think about it - the five years that a young girl goes through from age 12 to 17 - well those are pretty darn important.

So whenever I think of Groundhog Day - I don't really think about groundhogs or predictions of summer.  I remember coming home from school to an empty house (which NEVER happened) and wondering what the heck was going on.   I remember how everything changed that day.   Happy to say that my father, who is now 70, is definitely still smoke-free, and alive and well.

Present day, I am 43 years old.  I definitely think about the reality of my own mortality - especially given that my mom died so young.  But I'm doing well.  I still have weight to lose, but all my numbers are good (blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol, etc.).  I'm a work in progress, but thankfully I've never had to battle smoking or drugs or alcohol or anything like that.  Just food :)

This is a photo of my mother holding me as a baby.

As Always, Make Champion Choices,

Friday, February 1, 2013

30 Day Challenge Over

So, I just finished up a 30 day challenge that I did privately.  I did not tell a soul about this, not even my husband.  I just kept it to myself.  

You see, I often listen to contemporary Christian music, and here in town, the radio station is KLOVE.  But I never listened to it exclusively.  I would jump around between KLOVE and the local country station, and sometimes a pop station.  I'm not new to Christian music, I've been in love with it since I was a teenager, but it's never been an exclusive choice.

Anyway, the KLOVE station frequently promotes their 30 day challenge, where you make a promise to listen ONLY to Christian music for 30 days, whether on the radio or your iPod or whatever.   I took this challenge and actually did it for 31 days, all of January.  I started New Year's day (obviously).  Again, I never told anybody.

About the 3rd week in, my teenage daughter says to me in the car, 'you know mama, you sure have been listening to a lot of Jesus music lately'.   I just said 'yep'.  She then responded with she thought it was nice.  That was pretty much the end of the conversation.

I must say, I really did enjoy this whole past month of listening exclusively to Christian music.  I'm not saying I'm going to do it that way forever, but I did not change my radio station today, even though it is now February.  One unexpected value that I received from this is the confidence in completing something.  That probably sounds minor, but in all of my heath and fitness quests and challenges and things going on, it's nice to just quietly complete and accomplish a goal.  I find it very motivating.  It makes me want to set MORE goals and meet them/beat them.

Another neat thing happened, I discovered new music ... and found some great workout music.  I finally redeemed some iTunes gift cards I'd been hanging onto and loaded up with a ton of new songs (all Contemporary Christian music).

I also realized that I like listening to the news on the KLOVE station.  You see - in the past - that is always when I would change the channel, because I didn't want to listen to talking.  Once the news or jibber jabber came on, I'd switch to country or something else until I found music.  Participating in this challenge forced me to just leave the station alone and listen to the talking and the news and the testimonies and prayer requests.  I really found this uplifting and encouraging.  I must tell you; I had no idea I was missing out on some of the best stuff from the station.

Anyway, just thought I'd share that.  I'm more motivated, and have been slowing creeping out of this funk I had been in lately.  The month of January did wonders for me.   What goals will you set?  What can you accomplish in February that will put you in a better place?

And speaking of February - - I made a calendar of tasks to do each day this month.  I'm sharing it here, in case you want to participate as well.  Feel free to steal it, borrow it, share it, change it, etc.

As always, make champion choices!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Grapefruit Anybody?

So I promised I would try Grapefruit this week.  Well, the verdict is in:  It is adequately average.  Well, it's okay.  It's not fabulous to my tongue, but it didn't make me hurl either, so I guess that makes it okay in my book.  The surprising twist is that my kids loved it.  I was shocked - - truly  - - and the reason I was shocked is because I did not ask them to try it.  They had it out and cut up before I even came downstairs in the morning.  Hmmmm ... maybe this 'try new things' is rubbing off on them.

Guess where I got the grapefruit from?   Nope ... not Wal-mart.  ... there was a lady at Church who said that she has a very busy grapefruit tree and it is producing more than she can handle, so she brought lots and lots and lots of grapefruit to Church and was giving them away freely.   I definitely took her up on her generosity. Gives new meaning to 'fruit of the spirit', huh?

I also saw on a Facebook page somewhere, not sure where, the combination of orange slices and grapefruit slices together in a bowl.  That combination had not occurred to me before, but it looked interesting enough. SO I tried it that way too.  Yes, I like it better mixed with oranges.  Duh - should have guessed that I would.

Anyway - Grapefruit is very healthy and definitely something that should be a regular visitor to our kitchens.  So if you don't like it, or have not tried it in a while - I suggest you do so.  I promise you'll likely live through the experience to tell the tale.  Note:  However; it does interfere with certain medications, not sure which ones, so make sure you are aware of such.

As always, make champion choices,

Monday, January 28, 2013

21 Day Challenge

One of the biggest names in Positive Psychology is a gentleman named Shawn Achor. He has written several books about The Happiness Advantage. in Psychology Today magazine blog, he shared a 21 day challenge. If people have told you that you are negative; if you are posting about what is going wrong in your life and what hurts more than what you have accomplished or what is going well; or if you feel unhappy in your life, give this 21 day challenge a try. 

Try an experiment right now called the 21 Day Challenge. Pick one of the five researched habits and try it out for 21 days in a row to create a positive habit, then comment on this blog or msg me with your results.  (You can do more than 1 or all 5 if you wish, but at least do 1)

1. Write down three new things you are grateful for each day into a blank word document or into the free app I Journal. Research shows this will significantly improve your optimism even 6 months later, and raises your success rates significantly.

2. Write for 2 minutes a day describing one positive experience you had over the past 24 hours. This is a strategy to help transform you from a task-based thinker, to a meaning based thinker who scans the world for meaning instead of endless to-dos. This dramatically increases work happiness.

3. Exercise for 10 minutes a day. This trains your brain to believe your behavior matters, which causes a cascade of success throughout the rest of the day.

4. Meditate for 2 minutes, focusing on your breath going in and out. This will help you undo the negative effects of multitasking. Research shows you get multiple tasks done faster if you do them one at a time. It also decreases stress and raises happiness.

5. Write one, quick email first thing in the morning thanking or praising a member on your team. This significantly increases your feeling of social support, which in Shawn Achor's study at Harvard was the largest predictor of happiness for his students.

I am thinking of starting this February 1st, but I am going to do all five.  I am already a pretty positive and optimistic person anyway ... but this experiment surely can't hurt.

Information from my friend and professional therapist: Cyndi Tucci

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Zucchini for me?

Guess what?  Zucchini is good for you.  I bet you probably knew that.  Do you eat it regularly?  I never have, never did.  This was the food of the week in Deb's world.  I promised I would try Zucchini.  My biggest question was what the heck to do with it?  Just chop it up into a salad, broil it -  make Zucchini chips or what?  I posted the question to my FB page and got a ton of responses, too many to handle actually.  I figured out that Zucchini basically has a mild flavor and usually takes on the flavors of things around it.

So first, I tried it raw, just a slice, just to see what it was like.  It was okay.  I did not have a horrible or adverse reaction, but I tell you the truth, it took me quite a long time to actually take that bite.  This is part of my problem, the food phobia thing.  But I didn't die - I'm still alive and well, and Zucchini is not my enemy.  So now that I know it is harmless, the question remains -what can I really do with it.  I just ate it with some strawberries and that seemed to work well for me.   I'm wondering what other combinations would work well, and even considered slapping on some natural peanut butter to the thing.  Maybe next time.  Oh, and yes, there will be a next time.  I promise.

As always, make champion choices,

Friday, January 18, 2013

Is Arugula Awesome?

Um, the very first thing on our 'try new foods' adventure is Arugula.  I cannot say I was excited by this prospect.  Truly, the thought was getting more and more daunting as the week waned on.  I had planned to try it this Friday (Today)... and I knew I had to do it - just wasn't really thrilled to do such.  I had been reading and hearing that it had kind of a bitter and peppery taste, and that was really making me nervous.  But a promise is a promise, and thus -I had to dive in and do it - - whether I really wanted to do it or not.

Guess what?  It wasn't nearly as bad as I had made it up to be in my mind.  No, I'm not in love with this green mess.  Not at all.  It was a chore to get in a few bites.  But I added lemon juice, and then it wasn't so bad.  I don't really like salad dressings at all, so lemon juice usually will do it for me.   I also tried it mixed with spinach and mandarin orange slices and sunflower seeds.  Kind of like a mini salad, if you will.  Again, it was okay.  Not totally in love with this in the least, but it was different.  I definitely will try it again, in a different combination perhaps.  What about you?  What do YOU do with Arugula?

As always, make champion choices,

Saturday, January 12, 2013

2013 Goals

Happy New Year ... long time no blog. Hope everyone is moving towards their goals and/or resolutions. One goal I have for 2013 is to cover at least 1,000 miles via walking/biking/swimming or whatever. I even have a great group for this on Facebook which is fun. Part of this goal includes wearing my FitBit consistently and aiming for 10,000 steps/day and 10 flights of stairs/day. 

Another goal? Climb Enchanted Rock to the top and complete the trail around the bottom (more on that later).  

Hardest Goal?  I must work on getting more vegetables into my body. NOT sure how to quantify or measure that yet, but I will before this blog is done.

Some of you in here are aware of my weird eating habits, some call it a disorder. BUT if you're not familiar and happen to be interested, there is a link below where I write about it a bit. At any rate; a big weakness of mine is that I do not eat nearly enough vegetables. I've just GOT to get them in me. Right now I take an Alive multi-vitamin and make-do with some smoothies. I had spent a long time in broadening my diet and expanding with the 300 new foods experiment. It was pretty successful, but also stressful, so I took a LONG break. Time to get back at it. Must start making and finding ways to get more veggies in my body without them coming back up!  So I accidentally got a great idea from a Facebook friend about trying ONE new vegetable a week and we'll be each other's accountability partner.  Oh the pressure!  But I think I'm ready.  What will I do this week?  I have no idea.  Waiting to hear from her and what she thinks.  So how about I quantify that veggie goal to say, one new fruit or veggie a week (whether I like it or hate it) for a minimum of 31 weeks. That takes me up until right before my 44th birthday which is 8/21/13.  That way I can celebrate my birthday knowing I tried at least 31 new things, which is kinda like a month of new food, tee hee.   I did an experiment before where I tried a new thing every single day, but that was very stressful for me.  I like the weekly idea much better for this time around.

And in other news, last weekend I climbed a big fat rock . I didn't quite make it to the top of Enchanted Rock, my stupid knee wouldn't let me ... but I came darn close. Next time, that mountain is MINE! I will climb that rock and do the trail around the bottom before the end of 2013 for sure. It is part of my plan for 2013.  I really need to find a good knee brace. Hiking is my true love. I'd rather be outside climbing a hill or walking a trail, than in a gym any day. Tom ( hubby ) also suggested maybe a walking stick when we're on the trails to help me with my knee. Here is a pic as we started out of hubby and baby James getting going. The other 3 children had taken off already.

As always, make champion choices,

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

New Year Greetings

I don't really do the whole resolution thing ... but I do believe in goals and habits.  Here are some ideas I've got floating around in my head for a healthy and prosperous 2013.  Most people won't believe me, but 13 is my lucky number, so I have very high hopes for this coming year.

Remember: Many little steps taken consistently over time can add up to huge results toward living a happier, healthier life.
  1. Aim for 10 flights of stairs per day.
  2. Aim for 10,000 steps a day.  {1,000 miles in 2013 is my goal}
  3. Try a new food once a week - many of which need to be vegetables.
  4. Cook one new recipe from scratch at least per week.  Must do this!
  5. Prepare a large batch of something on the weekend I can easily reheat for meals during the week.
  6. Include fruits or vegetables with every meal.
  7. Seek out healthier version of the things I love to eat.  For example:  I love caramel frappes, fish sticks, canned chili and canned new england clam chowder ... how can I make these myself?
  8. Replace sweet tea with water or unsweetened tea - I'm already pretty good at this one, and very pleased I gave up diet coke once and for all! Whew!
  9. Drink less Starbucks.
  10. Continue to reduce and/or eliminate foods containing High Fructose Corn Syrup or artificial sweeteners - already pretty good at this one.
  11. Take a walk every day - already pretty good at this one.
  12. Look in the mirror and say something nice to myself every day ... easy peasey!
  13. Start the day with a healthy breakfast - I already do this!
  14. One day a week, choose an unexplored area near me and go for a hike (urban or nature). Love this.
  15. Get regular sleep - easier said than done.  Big problem for me, trouble with insomnia.
  16. Try a new physical activity that sounds fun.  I have so many ideas it's not even funny.
  17. Schedule at least 1 hour of “me” time a week and use it to do something I enjoy that relaxes me.  Hmmm?
  18. Commit to Meatless Mondays.  Not so hard.
  19. Journal and blog.
  20. Sit less, stand up more.
  21. When buying processed foods, choose products that contain ingredients you understand or 5 ingredients or less.  Try to get the whole family on the 'clean' eating bandwagon.  
  22. Commit to shopping at my local farmers market whenever possible.
  23. Park as far away from the store as possible and walk - I do this a lot.
  24. Reduce or completely eliminate foods containing partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated oils. Yes!
  25. Sign up for an event like a 5K walk or run and train for it.
  26. Replace negative thoughts about the way my body looks with positive thoughts about the things my body can do.  Important.
  27. Donate or put away clothing that does not fit and flatter me right now!  I am bad about this.
  28. Prepare vegetables and fruits ahead of time so I have healthy, easy to grab snacks ready when I want to munch something - for me and kids too.
  29. Watch less television and spend less time on Facebook.
  30. Try more smoothie recipes.
  31. Take a cooking class?  Hmmm, maybe.
  32. When I eat something indulgent, eat it slowly and enjoy it, guilt free.  Then move on.
  33. Play the XBOX Kinect with the kids.
  34. Take up a new hobby that is outdoors or a hobby that keeps me occupied when watching television (less mindless snacking).  Yes, I need a new hobby.  No clue what it will be.
  35. Every day, turn on some music I love and dance when nobody is watching.  I am good at this :)
  36. Read the Bible through entirely in the year 2013.
  37. Be more social with church groups, SparkPeople team, etc.  Need to meet more people, "in real life" people, not just online people! :)

I have so many things I want to try this year.  I want to complete a 5K (Have never done that).  I want to try Zumba again, and kickboxing and roller skating.  I want to go bowling more often.  I want to try Golf and Tennis.  I want to play basketball with my boys. I want to give Yoga another try. I love hiking - I want to climb Enchanted Rock and climb more hills and hike more trails.  I live in an awesome city and I intend to make very good use of the resources I have.

So, what can you add to the list?   A lot of this came from a blog I read at this link, but I modified it to suit me.

As always, make champion choices,