Tag Archives: Exercise

Plan to Get Back on Track

So, here I am, practically a year later on my weight loss journey (not a year since this blog was started, but a year, nonetheless), and I am 53 pounds lighter. I think. Why do I say I think? Because my last weigh-in was on August 5th, when I hit that magical place I’ve aspired to reach since first starting out on my trek: Onederland.

Why am I scared to hop back on the scale? Because I binged last week. I fell off the wagon hard, hit a brick wall, tripped up…feel free to insert whatever well-meaning cliche here. And yesterday, I binged again.

So, it’s time to retreat and review. A week off plan is better than a month off plan, so before that bad week becomes a bad month, I’ve created a plan of attack to get back on track.

1. One Soda a Day–I did so well at the beginning, switching from Coke to Diet Coke, then dropping to one Diet Coke a day. And now I’m up to three Diet Dr. Pepper’s a day. The stress of a new job is not helping, but if I don’t practice self-control now, I won’t be successful later on in keeping off the weight.

2. One Piece of Chocolate a Day–Another bad habit that’s crept back into my life is replacing good calories for bad ones. I’ve started eating two candy bars a day again. But no longer. From here on out, it’s one piece of chocolate a day, so I must choose wisely.

3. Exercise According to Trainer’s Plan–I hired a cycling coach, but workouts aren’t effective if not completed, so I will follow his plan starting today.

4. Weigh Myself Every Friday–It takes a big person (no pun intended) to face the scale once a week. I won’t be afraid of criticism, especially when it “comes” from a machine that’s not sentient.

5. No Meat or Milk–When I followed the blood-type diet, I felt amazing. My cycling improved, my sleep improved, my outlook on life improved. Now that I’ve gone back to eating crap, I feel sluggish, and my face is beginning to break out again. So, rather than switch back to the blood-type diet cold turkey, I plan to implement change a little at a time. So that means no meat or daily products, save for mozzarella cheese.

And that’s it. It’s amazing. I know what to do, so why can’t I do it? Because I let the “monster” slip back into the dark, and when I can’t see it, I let it run amuck. But now, my “monster” is back in the light, and I’m attacking head-on.

How’s everyone else doing on your weight loss journey?


Connecting the Body and Spirit

I’d read time and time on weight loss boards: “A body in motion doesn’t want to stop.” And I know this is truth. The hardest part about exercising is the starting part. The tying of the shoe strings. The pressing of the play button on the iPod. The slinging on of the sunglasses.

But once I begin, once I push the pedal or take the first step, I know I’m creating a better me. Notice I didn’t say a hotter me, or a thinner me, or a wow-wow-chicka-wow-wow me. Nor did I say a healthier one, either. All of those descriptions might be applicable as I keep exercising.

For me, exercise connects the body and the spirit in ways I could never imagine. My confidence soars as the breeze scoots past my handlebars and around my t-shirt. Every time I stand to climb an incline, I feel stronger. Exercising outdoors, away from the walls of a gym or living room, also makes me feel closer to God.

Now, I’m not religious, although I do consider myself spiritual. I believe God exists everywhere. He’s not just some guy in the sky waiting to fling judgment on me (even though my name, ironically, means ‘God is my judge.’). I believe God is in the sweat that spirals down my neck, in the asphalt of the trails I ride, in the algae of the creek I cross, just plain everywhere. And exercising outdoors makes me feel a part of something special, a bigger plan, if you will.

I exercised four times this past weight-loss week, and I feel amazing, both physically and spiritually. Looks like I’ve finally found my motivation. 🙂

If you need any motivation, watch this clip. One of my favorite, favorite, favorite training songs is included. 😉

Weigh-In: Fifth Week

I bet the turtle that said slow and steady wins the race never had to go on a weight loss journey. Because, if he had, he’d have known how frustrating slow weight loss can be.

Yup, you guessed it: I lost another half pound. When I did Weight Watchers a few years back, it was considered healthy to lose anywhere between 1/2-2 pounds a week. I haven’t kept up-to-date with the guidelines, but I imagine this is still true. And I know the research: slow weight loss leads to long term weight loss. So, why am I still beating myself up? Because I know that if I just exercise, the weight will come off in bigger chunks.

So, yes, I will wake up twice this coming week at five to hop on my Spinner Fit and ride, Baby, ride. I will hit the pavement twice this week in preparation for the half marathon in November. I will persevere, and I will be thankful that the number on the scale is descending. Better half a pound lost than three pounds gained, right?

No Time for the Motivation?

Green Day sings: “I’ve got no motivation/Where is my motivation/No time for the motivation/”. And that’s exactly how I feel.

Good thing I read a fellow blogger’s challenge to wake up early twice this week and a work-out in before the day becomes too crazy and stressful to exercise. Maybe that’s what I need.

See, I always start out with good intentions. The high of cycling over the weekends carries the motivation over into Monday (I even jogged this Monday in preparation for a half I want to do in November), but when Tuesday comes around, I’m out of motivation. Maybe it falls off by the side of International Boulevard, or it stays in bed, which is why I’m always telling myself, “I’ll exercise tomorrow,” when my head hits the pillow.

But no more. Tomorrow is weigh-in day: the start of my weight loss week, if you will. There’s no problem exercising on Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays. Tuesday will be the true test. Can I rise with the alarm and not push snooze half a dozen times? Can I find the time for the motivation?

Five Favorite Warm-Up Songs

5. “Cobrastyle” by Teddybears featuring Mad Cobra

Quick disclaimer: I have no idea what the song translates to. With that being said, the unique sound in “Cobrastyle” gets you pumped for a good workout, especially with the lyric, “My style is the bomb.” At least, I think that’s what the singer’s saying. 🙂

4. “It’s My Life” by Bon Jovi

Bon Jovi occupies a huge amount of MBs on my playlists, but “It’s My Life” is one of my favorites. JBJ sings, “It’s my life/It’s now or never/I ain’t gonna live forever/I just wanna live while I’m alive.” A perfect mantra for those of us that have given up living because of the number on the scale. Playing this song at the beginning of workouts reminds me that, no matter how much I weigh, it’s up to me to enjoy my life, and exercising is a great way to enjoy the wind on my skin and the bend of my legs. Exercise is a great way to feel alive.

3. “Stacy’s Mom Has Got It Going On” by Bowling for Soup

This song is a guilty pleasure. I’m about to admit something that I’ve never told anyone, not one other soul: Sometimes, when I need a kick to begin my workout, I change Stacy to Leda. Yes, I’m sure my daughter would hate to think her friends found her mom attractive. But hey, what can I say? Chanting “Leda’s mom has got it going on” a few times in my head makes me feel sexy in sweats.

2. “I’m Still Here” by John Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls

When I feel I need to stretch a bit, “I’m Still Here” is my go-to song. The beat is slower, but, more importantly for me, the lyrics ask for reflection. I play this when I’m physically ready to work out, but not quite ready mentally.

1. “This Fire” by Franz Ferdinand

When Alex Kapranos croons, “This fire is out of control/I’m gonna burn this city/Burn this city”, I think of how I’m about to burn the pavement or how I’m about to kick ass on the Del Mar hill with my bike. The percussion at the beginning also gets my toes tapping, which creates anticipation for the workout in store.

How about you? Any favorite warm-up songs? Share them in the comments section!

Weight Loss Fun on a Winter’s Day

In this part of Texas, winters are mild, perfect for outdoor excursions, so today I tackled one of my fitness goals and went to North Central Park with Leda and Scoots, her scooter. Grackles bathed in puddles beside us, and dogs guided their owners around us as we meandered down the path. At times, the earthy smell of grass and mud surrounded us, at other times the smell of dog poop accosted us, yet we enjoyed the chance to not only exercise our legs, but our senses, too.

Leda then decided she wanted to play tag around the playground, and play we did. My blood soared through my veins, and I felt like I was climbing the hill on Del Mar on my bike rather than chasing a six-year-old around a slide. And I still had the energy to laugh when she chased me. How could exercise involve this much smiling? The posters at the gym display men and women grimacing as they work to maintain their musclebound bodies. Cyclists finish rides with looks of exhaustion on their faces as they search for Sports Beans in the pockets of their jerseys.

Believe me, I’ve taken part in my share of hardcore exercise, and I want to be able to run four miles again and cycle three laps on the Del Mar stretch within an hour’s time. But today…today, I was just happy to enjoy the outdoors with my daughter and get the feel of pavement underneath my feet.

Today was fun.