Thursday, May 18, 2017

Now on YouTube!

While my weight loss journey is on somewhat of a hiatus and Kari is too busy raising 3 obnoxious but adorable little boys, we haven't been blogging.  I, however, have been vlogging and posting on YouTube so you should go over and check that out.  I will try to remember to post videos over here.  This is the latest Vlogs on my channel.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

I Don't Care About My Body Anymore

I've spent my entire life being told that fat is bad and fat is wrong.  Who makes these rules?  Who says that fat is bad, wrong, unhealthy?  I know a lot of people who weigh less than me that are in much worse health.  I love my body.  I love who I am and I'm not ashamed of anything.  My mistakes have helped me along the way and my triumphs are mine.  If you don't like it, go kick rocks.  Pardon me but I don't give a flying fuck.

A few months ago I had the opportunity to have some professional photos taken.  I have not released them to any of my friends or family.  I had a guy ask to use one of them on his Facebook page about loving the SSBBW body.  (SSBBW means Super Sized Big Beautiful Woman).  Since he put it up as his profile picture I have gotten messages from family asking if I knew someone was using my image.

It's time to release a few of the "safe for work" photos.  I feel strong and beautiful in these pictures and my photographer was amazing.  So thank you David Lucero for making me feel so comfortable.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Body Positivity and the Pressure to Lose Weight

My weight has been an issue my entire life.  I was always the fat kid in school.  But it never bothered me.  I was teased a bit but I knew I was a good person.  I have heard it before but "Is fat the worst thing a person can be?"  I could be a drug dealer, a murdered, a giant asshole.  Inside, I am a great friend, a good daughter and an excellent employee.  I take care of my husband, my house, my cats and do whatever I can for my family.  So why is the one thing people remember is that I am fat?

I worked hard for 18 months to improve my health and along with that, I lost weight.  My blood sugars, blood pressure, pulse, cholesterol and heart health are all fantastic.  I work out 2 to 4 days a week and have incredible amounts of energy.  So why am I looked down on because of my weight?  Why do random people feel they can come up to me and "be concerned" about me because I am fat?  They don't know me nor my story.

I'm in the best shape and healthiest of my life.  Yet, according to standards, I am an unhealthy drain on society.  I am unable to get life insurance, I am a high risk for health insurance, and an apparent drain on society's resources.  I am unable to adopt a child because my husband and I are considered high risk.  Why?  Basically they assume we are unhealthy and will die before the child is grown up.

I work 40 hours a week, am not on any "assistance", pay all my own bills and don't ask for or get any hand outs.  But I am considered less of a person because I am fat.  Amidst even the "body positive" people, I am still considered too big.  I guess all I have to say is FUCK YOU AND YOUR STANDARDS.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Kristy's Weight Loss Journey: I Jumped Ship

I jumped off the weight loss ship.  I took off my FitBit.  I stopped going to the gym.  I haven't been on Instagram.  I haven't opened the blog page.  I haven't logged or weighed my food.  It's been about 2 weeks.  But guess what?  My weight hasn't changed.  I haven't went up or down.  Let me take you back to my last blog and let's go from there.

In my last blog I was talking about my experience with Intermittent Fasting and the Keto lifestyle.  With Intermittent Fasting, I found myself being stuffed and feeling sick in the evenings.  The first two weeks weren't bad but after that I just felt like it wasn't working for me.  I can see how it would work for some people.  And perhaps for me, the lack of carbs and the fasting were a bad combination.  As far as Keto, I am not strict about it and I do not test my ketones.  I just stick with super low carb, avoiding bread, potatoes, pasta and rice.

I had about a week vacation planned so I knew I wouldn't be tracking my food.  I decided to leave my FitBit at home so I wouldn't have to worry about charging it while away.  The only thing I miss about it is looking at the time.  I have been at this for 20 months now.  I still want to lose more weight but I don't have a time limit.  I also don't want to have to miss out on some fun because I am afraid of what to eat or drink.  So on vacation, I ate, drank and was generally merry.

I left from work on Tuesday afternoon and headed to Olympia to pick up my sister.  Her and I then drove up to the Bainbridge Island area to the Clearwater Casino and Resort to meet our friend Brenda for a few days.  Brenda was at a work conference but she was free at night.  Tuesday night we went to a fee comedy show at the Sports Bar at the Resort.  They had an incredible deal of a burger, a beer and a shot for $10!  We all got Fireball and burgers and laughed our butts off.

The next morning we had Crab Benedict on the terrace before Brenda had to go off to class.  Kari and I ventured into town for a little shopping.  I got a killer deal on some clearance clothes at Target and some nice stuff at a consignment shop called Curvy QT.  When Brenda was done for the day we went to the pool and hot tub and laid out there for a while.  We came back, took showers and headed to dinner at the buffet.

Thursday morning we had breakfast at the cafe again and said our goodbyes.  Kari and I headed to our Mom's to pick her up and then we went to Kari's and Mom and I headed to my house.  We stopped in Longview and picked up my husband to go to the Oregon Dunes near Winchester Bay.  I was in the car from 8 am until around 5 pm.  By the time we got there, I was completely done.  I had some drinks and don't remember much after that until I woke up the next day.

We basically sat around the campfire for the next 2 days and just relaxed.  Thank goodness we did because our drive home on Saturday was a crazy one.  We got stopped once for a brush fire and a second time by 5 police cars blocking I-205 for a hostage situation.  Our 6 hour drive turned into 9 hours.  When we finally got home, around 5 pm, we both went to bed.  I woke up 13 hours later, feeling amazing.

Back to work on Monday and back on my routine.  I skipped the gym Monday because work was a bit crazy but Tuesday I did a heavy arm day.  Then Wednesday I had a doctor's appointment on Vancouver so I had to miss and Thursday I did squats which nearly killed me.  I had zero energy and every movement felt extremely heavy.  Friday I was the sorest I have ever been.  My abs, legs, arms and shoulders hurt so badly.

All in all, I am still going to be losing weight, just not being so stringent.  I will probably go back to tracking my food and my exercise but I may not use my FitBit much more.  In order to make this more sustainable, I have to be able to do it without any of these tools.  To know my body's needs and capabilities.  Losing weight is the easy part of all of this.  The mental struggle is by far the hardest.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Josh's Journey: The Trouble With Stress

About a month ago, our family got together and decided to work on getting healthier.  I figured that I'd have the easiest time.  I had already been going to the gym, was trying to eat healthier and getting a decent amount of sleep.  I was so wrong.

I came to the realization that maybe I wasn't as in shape as I thought.  Especially after tracking what I was eating.  Soon after, I started to falter.  And I fell hard.  I started to eat really badly.  As far as the gym, well let just say I was paying them to keep the dust off my locker.  Work was really starting to get stressful with big numbers to hit and my sleep declined.  I was tossing and turning all night and getting up early for no reason.  I just could not sleep.

But, this is a new week and I need start some place.  I still have a lot to do at work and since I am still getting up early,  why not go to the gym and use what I am paying for?  I know that it always makes me feel better!  One of the perks of going super early to the gym is that there are very little people there so I am not fighting for equipment.  I have a good routine, start with cardio then free weights.  Abs on Tuesday, legs on Wednesday, back on Thursday, free day on Friday to hit what ever I missed. 
I might only have 30 to 45 mins to workout every morning but I am going to get back to it.  This should help manage my stress at work and at home which in turn will improve my sleep.

Luckily my gym is right next to where I start my day.  Overall this should be one of the smartest and healthiest decisions I have made.  Well until next the time keep on smiling and remember everyone starts some place so let keep encouraging those around us and we'll see how far they all can really go.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Weight Loss Journey: My First Two Weeks of Intermittent Fasting

I recently discovered Reddit.  Specifically the subreddit r/loseit.  I was looking for some advice from fellow Weight Loss Journey takers to get me over my plateau.  I had one poster suggest Intermittent Fasting.  I had heard the term but was unsure what it was about so I went to YouTube for the low down.  I watched/listened to 10 or 15 videos and decided these people were crazy.

I love food.  How could I go 16 or more hours without eating?  I eat 4 or 5 meals a day, averaging 400-500 calories each.  I am very scheduled in my meal times.  However, when I cut to 1800 calories, from 2000, I found myself over eating in the evenings.  I also never felt full or satisfied.  I was eating because it was time to eat and I was never really hungry.  The diet was not fun at all, it was terrible.  I was a slave to my food and schedule.  My husband can attest to how moody I was becoming.

The science behind Intermittent Fasting actually makes a lot of sense.  When you fast, your body uses all the glucose in your body for energy.  When the glucose is depleted, your body turns to your fat storage for energy.  It goes along nicely with a low carb or Keto eating style.  Keto is a very strict low carb/high fat diet where you have less than 20-40 net carbs per day.  You avoid fruit and most of your carbs come from vegetables.  I have been contemplating Keto for a while and a lot of the Keto experts talk about fasting.  They both basically turn your body into a fat burner, instead of a glucose burner.  (Here is a great video on Keto and Fasting.)  So why not try Intermittent Fasting?

From all the videos I watched, here was my plan:
1.  16 hours fasting, allowing 8 hours of eating.
2.  On work days, no eating until after my work out, then a sensibly caloric meal.
3.  Only Coffee, water and my vitamins in the morning.
4.  If hunger gets to be too much, I will eat a small snack.
5.  Enjoy life, enjoy food and don't be hard on myself.

Day One - June 16th, 2016 - 1774 cals
I had the day off and left my house around 8:15.  I stopped and got an iced coffee with non fat milk and sugar free caramel syrup.  I also picked up a Protein Bistro box, in case this went terribly wrong.  I went with my sister to my nephew's graduation.  They had a pot luck type lunch around 12.  I grabbed some salami, cheese, meatballs and roast beef.  I also had a few bites of cake and a small bag of chips that one of the kids didn't eat.

I got home a little after 4, ate some cottage cheese and pop chips while I cooked a Spaghetti Squash in the microwave.  I scraped the squash and made myself an Italian dinner.  I added ground turkey, mushrooms, spaghetti sauce and parmesan cheese.  It was seriously delicious.  Later that night I had some pureed strawberries, with goji berries, cacao nibs and pumpkin seeds.  I ended the day just below 1800 calories.

Day Two - June 17th, 2016 - 1716 cals
I picked up coffee on my way to work and was there at 6:30.  I had only that and water until after my workout at 1:00.  I was unsure how my workout would go since I hadn't ate anything for 17 hours but it surprisingly went well.  I felt strong, hit a lot of reps and powered through 40 minutes of lifting.

When I got back to work at 2:00 I had cottage cheese, pop chips and another serving of the italian spaghetti squash.  We had dinner plans with some family that were here from Iowa.  We had dinner around 5:30.  I had a few fried pickles, salad, prime rib and veggies.  It was delicious and I was still under my calorie goal for the day.  I was finished eating around 6:00.

Day Three - June 18th, 2016 - 1744 cals
I had a very busy day scheduled and decided to break my fast at 9 am (15 hours).  I made myself a veggie scramble and was on the road around 10 to head north.  I ate a bit junky, enjoying locally made Apple Cider donuts, pepperoni sticks and smoked cheese.

I went to an Anniversary party with my Mom, Grandma, Sister and youngest Nephew.  The food was fantastic.  I avoided the carby foods.  I had Cesar salad, chicken and a summer vegetable tian which I will be making soon.  I stopped eating around 5 pm.  Again, was still under my calories.

Day Four - June 19th, 2016 - 1756 cals
We had Father's Day breakfast with Roger's parents at our normal Sunday place around 9 am.  I had a delicious ham and cheese omelette.  We went to Wal-Mart for a few things afterward, got home around 12 and I had 2 pepperoni sticks and 2 pieces of cheese.  I didn't eat again until around 4.  I made Pizza Chicken which is chicken layered with tomato sauce, turkey pepperoni and mozzarella cheese.  I had a cabbage salad with it.  I actually got very full, very fast so I ended my eating around 5:30.  I will be honest, it took a lot of willpower not to eat while we were just sitting at home until bed.

Day Five - June 20th, 2016 - 1957 cals
I was doing fine until after my work out today.  I made it back from the gym around 2:30 and was ready to eat.  My stomach wasn't growling but I felt like I needed to eat.  I had left over Pizza Chicken with some broccoli.  I attempted to pace myself but ate fairly fast.  I had fasted for 21 hours.  After I ate the Pizza Chicken, I thought that wasn't enough so I had a small bag of pop chips from my drawer and before I knew it, I had eaten all 3 bags.

That was an extra 300 calories and 45 carbs, way over my daily allowance.  I felt it too.  I was suddenly so tired and lethargic.  I could feel that it was spiking my blood sugar and I remembered why I quit carbs in the first place.  Lesson learned.  This is going to take some time to get a complete hold on but I know I can do it.  I felt like crap so made myself some veggie soup and ended up only 157 calories over my goal.

Day Six - June 21st, 2016 - 1931 cals
After yesterday's fiasco, I was tempted to scrap this whole thing but I really wanted to give this a good month or so to see the full results.  I have to be more in tune with my body and what it needs.  Today I fasted for 18 hours, eating at 11:15.  I had some leftover Pizza Chicken which I ate slowly and paced myself.  I feel much better.  I went go to the gym at 1:30 and came back to have leftover soup from last night.

I stopped at the grocery store on the way home and picked up some T-Bone steaks (50% off!!!), Ahi Tuna steaks and Corn on the Cob.  I ended up eating about 3 ounces of tuna, an ear of corn and some blue cheese kettle chips.  I didn't say I was perfect.

Day Seven - June 22nd, 2016 - 1726 cals
I broke my fast around 11:30 with some Ahi Tuna with a little soy sauce and sesame seeds.  It was so good and a perfect pre-workout meal.  After my upper body workout, I had a salad with some of the leftover T-Bone Steak.  It hit the spot.  I came home and put pork chops in the oven with Sauerkraut.  While it cooked I had some Johnson's Smokehouse Trail Mix.  You have to try this stuff.  It is AMAZING!  I added broccoli to my dinner and was good for the night.

Day Eight - June 23rd, 2016 - 1791 cals
I waited until after my work out today to break my fast.  I did squats and didn't want anything in my stomach, as this is my hardest day.  I had the last of the Tuna and Steak along with some cottage cheese.  It was one of the guy's birthday at work so I had half a piece of cheesecake.  I ate some pop chips while dinner baked in the oven.  I only had 2 servings but again, felt like crap after eating them.  I gave the rest of my pop chips to my co-workers.  We had Roasted Chicken Leg Quarters with Broccoli.  Simple and delicious.

Day Nine - June 24th, 2016 - 1382 cals
It's finally Friday and my final work out of the week.  I again worked out fasted.  I came back to work and ate leftovers from the pork chops a few nights ago and the chicken from last night.  I had ground beef out for dinner and decided to try making a meat pizza.  I used the ground beef, mixed with some eggs and seasonings, as the crust.  I had turkey pepperoni and mozzarella cheese as the toppings.  It was really good.  Next time I would add marinara or something for a sauce.  I will be making it again.

Day Ten - June 25th, 2016 - 1663 cals
I had a free Saturday.  I couldn't believe it.  A Saturday with no plans and no where to be.  Roger was working on our classic car so he was around but outside all day.  I took the opportunity to catch up on the house.  So often I get home from work, make dinner, maybe do the dishes and am done for the night.  I swept, mopped, vacuumed, dusted, folded, hung up and organized.  It was awesome.

I fasted until 1 pm and had the other half of my meat pizza and a salad with some chicken.  For dinner I threw together a soup with spaghetti squash, chicken and veggies.  I find soup is an easy way to get full and stay low calorie.  Cutting out breakfast has really kept my hunger at bay as well as an easy way to stay under my calorie goal.  I finished the day with almost 7,000 steps and 71 active minutes.  For not leaving the house, I thought it was great.

Day Eleven - June 26th, 2016 - 1783 cals
Our normal Sunday ritual is to go to the Silver Star Saloon and have breakfast before we go grocery shopping.  This day was no different.  I got a ham and cheese omelette with cottage cheese and tomato slices.  Afterward we headed to Fred Meyer for a few items.  I felt really weird.  Very sweaty, shaky and nauseous.  It was a similar feeling to when I eat too much sugar or carbs.  But there were very few carbs in my meal so I am not sure what was going on.

We headed north to Olympia after I settled down to have lunch for my Mom's birthday.  We went to Fujiyama, a Japanese steakhouse.  They cook your meal on the Hibachi grill in front of you.  We took my nephews and they loved it.  I had salmon and a double order of veggies, no rice.  It was so delicious.  Then we went to Trader Joe's and got some really good stuff.  I am looking forward to shopping there again.

Day Twelve - June 27th, 2016 - 1659 cals
Another work week under way.  I went to the gym fasted and worked upper body.  I belong to a support/motivation group on Facebook that includes a bunch of Instagram buddies.  It's called Team Chump To Champ and I asked them for some help with my work outs.  I find myself not being sore and I thought maybe I wasn't working hard enough.  They gave me some great tips and I had an outstanding work out.

I was fasted for 19 hours and had some Squash Spaghetti.  Basically it is just spaghetti with meat sauce, but the noodles are spaghetti squash.  I also had a salad with tuna and Trader Joe's Reduced Guilt Guacamole.  For dinner I made Turkey Burgers, from scratch.  If you think Turkey Burgers are dry and bland, make them yourself.  They are so easy.  I had mine bunless with an egg and guacamole on top.  Also a few Kalamata Olives on the side.

Day Thirteen - June 28th, 2016 - 1363 cals
I made an appointment with the trainer at my gym.  I just wanted some reassurance that I was doing the right work outs.  I am a paranoid person.  She said I was doing great.  My split was good and maybe I just needed to add some weight.  I was very happy.  After, I didn't have time for a work out so I went over to JC Penney to check out the new Boutique Plus Size collection.  What a load of BS.  Three racks does not a collection make.  I went to the Men's Big & Tall section, four racks.  I was actually pretty pissed.  The plus size clothing selection in this town is a joke.

I went back to work, had the same lunch as yesterday.  Salad and Squash Spaghetti.  It was payday so I went to the bank, the post office and then stopped at a new store called 8-28 Women's Clothing Exchange.  Thank you for restoring my faith in clothing selection.  The store was full of clothing, petite to plus.  I got a great jacket to wear over tank tops and I will be bringing in some of my clothes to sell.  After that, I stopped at Safeway for a few groceries and scored some pork chops for 50% off.  I paid $2 for nearly a pound of chops.  Super happy girl.  I had one chop with sauerkraut and a salad with avocado and salsa.

Day Fourteen - June 28th, 2016 - 1630 cals
I was determined to have a great work out after my meeting with the trainer.  I went in and told myself to push harder than ever before and I did.  I had a fantastic upper body day.  When I got back to work I had a pork chop, sauerkraut and squash spaghetti.  I went home and attempted to make Healthy Banana Pancakes.  I would say they were a fail.  When using almond flour and coconut flour, things are just so crumbly.  Roger ate them and I made a salad with some bacon, avocado and salsa.

Weigh In Monday June 13th - 393.4
Weigh In Monday June 20th - 385.8
Weigh In Saturday June 25th - 381.2
Weigh In Thursday June 30th - 379.0

According to my medical record, I now weigh my lowest since February 2007.  My goal is to weigh around what I weighed when we got married in February 2005 by the end of the year.  I was 340 around then, so about 40 lbs to go.

Final Thoughts on Intermittent Fasting
I believe I have found my way again.  I am enjoying food, I am less stressed, I am not obsessing over menus and lists.  I find myself full in the evening and not wanting to snack.  I have very little hunger in fact.  I am able to stay under my calories without feeling like I am suffering.  I know this blog was long but I wanted to give a full view of at least 2 weeks of this trial.  I am going to stick with it.  I think the results speak for themselves.

Quick Non-Scale Victory...I fit into jeans from Old Navy!  In fact, the size 30s are not tight at all.  I probably could wear a 28!!