Running In A Winter Wonderland

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Thanks to all the wonderful gear I got yesterday, I was able to take my run outdoors today!  This is technically my first “winter run”.  I’ve been having to resort to running on my treadmill at home due to the crazy cold temperatures and insane amounts of snow.  If there’s one thing Central New York is known for, it’s our extreme winters. 

I checked the weather and there was a chance of snow, temperature at the time was 18 degrees, but with the wind chill that brought the temperature to feel about 5 degrees and the wind was gusting at about 13 mph.  When I opened the front door my exact word were “holy sh*t it’s cold!”.  But the sun was shinning.  All I wanted to do was *try* it.  So try it I did!

And here’s how today’s run went:

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With the wind in my face throughout most of the run, it definitely was a challenge.  I also had some slight hills to run but that was exciting.  And even though some of the roads were nothing but slippery slush, I managed not to fall!!  I really wasn’t planning on going a certain amount of miles, but I knew I wanted to get in at least 3.  I’m happy with 4.27.

Running outside in weather like that all of the time is definitely not my thing, as I’m really not a fan of cold weather.  But at least I can say I did it, and that I *can* do it.  I will most certainly be trying to get out there a little bit more this winter.

I’m a grown woman! I do what I want!

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Yeah, yeah, yeah….I get it.  I’m supposed to take my daily multivitamin like a big girl and swallow it the old fashioned way.  Well guess what…NO!!  I don’t know what my deal is with multivitamins but they are very difficult for me.  I don’t have problems with any other pills, and hell, I don’t even have much of a gag reflex (you can insert your nasty but jealous thought here;-) but for some reason as soon as I put a multivitamin in my mouth, I gag.  I’ve tried so many different kinds…organic, gel tabbed, coated…none of them make an easy way down my throat. 

Then I saw these at my local Target:

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That’s right….ADULT gummy multivitamins!!  I couldn’t pass this up. 

I am happy to report that these are very tasty, and went down with absolute ease.  So yes, I will be taking my daily multivitamin like a 4 year old, and I don’t give a shit!

It pays to look like a runner

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They say that running is free, and sure, for the most part that is true.  But like everything else in life, there is sometimes a cost associated with this sport.  If you do a race you might be looking at $20 or so for each 5K or 10K race you sign up for, $86.95 (to be exact) to run in a 1/2 marathon and so on and so on.  Then you have your gear…shoes which can cost you $100+, running shorts & pants, tech-wick shirts, running jackets, and so on and so forth.
 
Since I’ve started running I’ve yearned to have some of my own fabulous gear.  I know, I know….I’m not running to look good, but c’mon, everyone wants to look good!!  *If you look good, you feel good.*
Well, thanks to a blessing called the “tax refund”, I was able to go out shopping today and get some new great gear!!  I may have spent a lot of money (probably around $200 all together, that's including a few items I got for Frankie & Damon) but 99% of what I got was one sale, and truthfully, all stuff I needed.  So here are some pics of the goodies I got:

I got this cute little mug to house my tea or coffee in at work.  It’s corny, and that's why I love it ;-)
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When I saw these running shorts, the first thought that popped in my head was “I want to wear these when I run my 1/2 marathon”.  Also, the shirt I am wearing is a new Nike Dri-Fit Cotton long sleeve shirt…red to match the shorts of course!
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These Nike Pro cold weather running tights are normally $50 but were marked down to $29.  I couldn’t pass them up.  Something tells me I am going to need them for my 5K on Feb. 13th.  But don't worry…I will be wearing them under my windbreakers, so people don't have to be subjected to seeing me in tights.
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Please note that I do not work for Nike, nor do I only buy Nike Products, lol.  It just so happens that the Sports Authority by me carries like 95% Nike items and they seemed to be the best bargain. 
This has to be my favorite purchase of the day….. A red Nike Dri-Fit running jacket.  Kind of wished they had a size smaller, but there's room for layering on the cold days.  This was marked down to $39 & I believe it will be worth every penny.  Expect to see me in this even when I’m not running!
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I’m having a horrible hair dry, so please excuse the nasty looking mane.
I finally have winter boots!!  No longer will I be trying to tread through parking lots in my 5” stiletto heels!  These were originally $60 marked down to $20!!  Who knew I could score such a deal for winter boots at a sporting goods store.
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And finally…I saw this zip-up hoodie over a month ago and I loved it.  It has a great fit and its nice and warm.  Plus, thanks to the Nike symbol, I feel like more an athlete with it on when I’m just lounging around in it, lol.  I picked it up earlier but then put it back.  Finally when I ran out to get dinner for the family, I went back to the store and got it.  It was marked down to $30, and I am wearing it at this very moment…
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Wow…I really need to spend some money on some glass cleaner apparently.  Oh, and a decent camera.  :-/
I also scored a nice pair of jeans and 2 new t-shirts at the Salvation Army:
I think I look so short here, lol.  I’m not though, I’m 5’9.
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And there it is….Suzi’s day of shopping!!  It felt really nice to be able to spend some money and to spend it on things for myself that not only make me feel good, but are going to be put towards working on making me feel even better!!

I hope that everyone is having a great weekend!!  I just got finished watching ‘Food Inc.”, its a very eye opening and educational documentary about the food industry and how they have turned the average farmer into a wind-up toy basically.  I highly recommend it to everyone!!!!

Call in the guards!

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We are very serious about our beer here in the household.  We are very protective of it and we are always making sure that it stays well stocked and ice cold.  We’ve even gone to the extent to hire guard's to look after the beer for us……

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So WATCH OUT….cause she will claw your eyes out if you touch the beer with out asking!

A great giveaway!

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So I was lucky enough to have the wonderful Tricia over at the lovely blog Endurance Isnt Only Physical find me somehow here in the blog world.  I’ve been giving her blog a good look through this morning and all I have  to say is WOW!  This girl is amazing!!  She is epitome of showing how if you work hard & go after things that you really want in life, you will reap big rewards!!

She also is able to do fantastic giveaways & contests.  I would love to be able to do this someday, but for now…..

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Please go over to her blog and enter to win a great Nathans Hydration Belt here!  This product has gotten great reviews (a thumbs up from Tricia herself as well).  I have seen these in the stores and have contemplated on whether I should check them out or not. The quality of these are really outstanding and definitely very durable.  Who knows…maybe I’ll be a wiener….I mean winner!!

Whether you are a runner or not though, please find a minute to check out her amazing blog.  You are sure to find some great inspiration there!

It’s Official!!

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Sometimes victories that are the greatest are the ones that are not made on the scale….

First, I will start by saying that I was up .8 at my WI tonight.  I knew I would be up and to be honest, I’m surprised it was only by that much.  I am perfectly ok with this because I knew what I had done to get to that.  But I also know that since getting right back on track last Sunday, that I have made a lot of great accomplishments this week.  I already talked about all of this in this blog though. 

So now onto today’s great news…..

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I am officially signed up for the Philadelphia Rock –N- Roll 1/2 Marathon!!!!!!  I have been talking about it for over a month now, and today (thanks to my tax refund) I was finally able to make it a reality. 

As it said in my official letter this morning from the team..I am “officially a member of a very auspicious club and about to embark on a life changing journey.”  I don’t know about you guys, but that sure sounds like fun to me!!

I know its so far away….September 19th to be exact, but I am SO excited.  I can’t believe I am going to train & run 13.1 miles.  That’s INSANE!!  It seems like yesterday I was struggling to just run 13 seconds!!  The other great part about this is that Frank and I are planning on making a mini-vacation out of this.  Have I mentioned that we’ve never gone on vacation, just the two of us.  I’m beyond excited for the ENTIRE experience!!

My goal is not so much my time (though I am hoping for 2:30 or under) but just to be able to say that I crossed the finish line!  I in no way want to become this crazy distance runner (not that there is anything wrong with that!) but I just want to be able to say that I can complete a nice long run.  I want to be able to run to the point where running 6 miles is comfortable and running 10 or so is considered a long run for myself.  Running is fun and should stay that way.  It’s therapeutic, relaxing (well, sometimes) and has so many benefits that I would put you all to sleep listing them here.  Being able to say that I have finished a 1/2 marathon would be life changing!!  If you don't believe me, please see my note from the officials above.  ;-)

SO…Not only did I sign up for the 1/2 marathon today, but I also signed up for a little 5K race that's near by.  It is the day before Valentines Day and I thought it would be a perfect way for me to get a fun run in before gorging my face in steak and lobster the next day and get me motivated to look even more fabulous in my dress!!  I also get a sweet t-shirt & goody bag.  Rumor has it too that there are free massages before and after the run.  Hopefully the weather wont be so bad that I wont be able to attend, but I paid my $20 so I plan on it!!

Maybe I didn't have another great loss this week, but I would take a small gain on the scale and a HUGE gain in healthy accomplishments any time. 

A Shout-Out to a great recipe blog!

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So, not only did I fulfill my requirement of trying at least 1 new healthy recipe a month, but I exceeded it!!  My friend Ashley (you can find her great blog here.  She’s running the Disney 1/2 marathon in a month!!) sent my a great e-mail over expressing her excitement for ordering a great new crock pot.  In this e-mail she included a link to a delicious sounding crock pot recipe from this fabulous blog called Gina's Weight Watcher Recipes

Giving the blog a quick look through at work, I right there and then was able to come to the conclusion that this lady knows her stuff!!  These are not your every day boring WW recipes, but nor are there crazy ingredients and hair pulling directions (like some WW recipe books…I mean seriously, I think they make 1/2 of those ingredients up).

The recipe I tried was called the 'Crock Pot Chicken Taco Chili’ and you can find it here!!  This was AMAZING!!  I do not use my crock pot nearly as much as I would like to, and I am SO glad that I chose to pull it out from under the cupboards for this.  It is so tasty, filling, healthy & WW friendly!!  What more could you ask for??  Nothing….unless your greedy. ;-)  Which if that's the case, then head over to her blog NOW and check out some more great recipes!!  I can’t to try them.

Here is how Crock Pot Turkey Chili came out:

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p.s. The cilantro is amazing in this!!

I will not rain on my parade!

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So I managed to get a nice 40 minute workout on the elliptical when I get home from work.  Thankfully tonight was a ‘bye’ week for Frankie’s darts (for those of you who don't understand what that means, it means no darts this week) so I didn’t have to worry about being rushed.  We stopped to Wegmans on the way home from work and picked up a rotisserie chicken for dinner…yum, yum!

The 40 minutes I did were quite hard actually.  My legs and core are still very sore (I rhymed, hee hee) from running the 6 miles on Sunday.  I contemplated giving myself another night off to rest & heal up, but I just kept thinking to myself “I have to try to undo the damage I did over the weekend!”.  And then it hit me….

So fucking what?!?!  Maybe I wont “undo” the damage within 4 days.  I haven't had a gain in weeks.  Not to brag here, but I seriously just don't remember.  Sometime before Christmas I think.  I’ve been losing every week since.  YOU CANT LOSE EVERY WEEK!!  If I have a gain Thursday night, so f’ing be it!!  I can be ok with that because I know that I have picked myself up since Saturday.  I got right back on program Sunday and since then I have made a stellar accomplishment with my running (did I mention I ran 6 miles?? lol) and I have tracked all of my food and have even had left over points on a few occasions.  I pushed myself through a tough workout tonight and went 20 minutes beyond the minute time I *promised* myself that I would get through.  I also have added a TON of vegetables & fruits into my diet this week.  Oh…AND…tomorrow I am trying a brand new WW friendly crock pot recipe that I found on a FABULOUS new blog…I will share the results of that, plus the shout out to the blog tomorrow night.  So not only did I manage to make one new recipe this month (let alone this week!) but I made 2!!

So you know what…I’m going to stop thinking that I need to “undo” anything, and start thinking “keep on the healthy path that has become your great new life”…sorry, I cant think of a clever way to sum that up into a word or two.

We will see what happens on Thursday at my WI, but either way I know that whatever the scale says, I know that I have picked myself up, dusted myself off, and am following the right path….and that’s all that matters (and that I still fit into my dress, but I’m not worried about that, LOL).

WW Bean, Vegetable & Feta Bake Recipe

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So one of my goals for 2010 (that blog post can be found here) is to try a new Weight Watchers (or healthy-related) recipe at least once a month.  This months recipe comes courtesy of the WW Magazine that is on news-stands now (Jan/Feb Vol 43 Issue 1 pg. 88).

It is a Bean, Vegetable & Feta Bake…It serves 4 and it is 5 pts for 1 1/2 cups.

Here are the ingredients used:

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9 oz baby spinach

8 sun dried tomato halves

1 large Zucchini

1 large red bell pepper

1 can Cannellini beans

1 cup of reduced fat feta cheese

Salt/pepper/garlic/red pepper flakes

Also, the recipe calls out for one large onion, but I am allergic so there fore I used dried onion (I can handle dehydrated onions in small amounts).

Directions:

 

Put 8 of the sun dried tomato halves in hot water & soak for about 10 minutesDSCN2289

Rinse & drain cannellini beans

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While the tomatoes are softening up, I chopped up the pepper, zucchini & garlic

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Then in a large heated skillet that's been sprayed with non-fat cooking spray, add the vegetables, garlic, salt, pepper, onion & red pepper flakes.  Cook, stirring occasionally for about 8 minutes

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While this is going on your can drain and chop up the tomatoes & toast your 2 slices of bread.

Once the vegetables are cooked a bit, start adding in batches of the spinach.  It should take about 3 minutes or so to wilt the whole bag

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Once the spinach is wilted, then add the cannellini beans, 1/2 cup of feta & tomatoes

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Transfer this mixture to a baking dish, top of the 2 slices of toasted bread (cubed) & remaining feta cheese

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Then bake in oven at 375 degrees for about 25 minutes and VOILA!

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The verdict:  AWESOME!!  I must admit that when it came out of the oven I wasn't 100% sold.  I mean it looked nice and healthy but you know how sometimes stuff that seems like that doesn't always spell out the same in the flavor department.  It’s definitely a great dish and I will certainly be making it again!

Well…that's my very first recipe blog!  It was a blast to do and I hope you guys enjoyed it!  Any comments, good or bad, are welcome as always.  Now I’m off to put my legs up, relax (late dinner tonight! It’s already 9:00!) and enjoy my Jell-O Sugar Free Mousse cup. :-)

Goodbye Friday & Saturday….

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So, it was no secret that I’ve been pretty awful with my eating and alcohol intake the past couple of days.  I have a tendency of doing this every now and then, and sometimes it works out to my benefit, but I still dont enjoy putting all of that junk into my body. 
Yesterday was the nail in the coffin really  Deviled eggs, home-made lasagna (at least I used light ingredients :-/) and again many, many beers.  Oh yeah, and one cannoli…EEK!!  I went to bed feeling awful and my stomach was torn apart.
I went to bed knowing that I would wake up and start fresh.  The party was over.  Enough fucking around, and get back to being the healthy, smart Suzi that I know and love being. 
So thats just what I did!!  I woke up this morning and downed a bunch of water.  Then since we have been so kindly graced with a warmer day here in Syracuse (high around 39) I was able to go have a run at the parkway.  It was the first time in over a month that I have been able to run on the road.  It felt AMAZING!!  I wasnt sure how long I would be able to run for, since it had been about a week since I ran last, thanks to my broken toe (which is a lot better, but now quite sore again). 
I RAN 6 MILES!!!!  This is my longest distance yet.  It may be a bit short of 6 miles…they have markers at the park but even some of those are off, but according the my Nike+ is was 6.2 miles.  Anywho….it felt AMAZING!!  The last mile was tough, really tough actually, but I just kept thinking about all of the junk that I put into my body the past 2 days and I pushed through. I took a screen shot from my Nike+…hopefully you can see it:
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After my run I went to Wegmans (our local grocery store) and loaded up on delicious, healthy goodies for me to have for the week.  Lots of vegetables, and some fruits.  It’s great knowing that I have good food so easily on hand.
So to Friday and Saturday….I am over you!  We had fun.  We laughed and played around.  But that time is over now.  I must move forward you see, to better things.  I know that you will probably try to stick with me the next few days, so please do not take it too badly when I say…get the f*ck off me and leave me alone!! ;-)

P.S  I am editing this right now because I forgot to mention another success I made today.  I turned down going to eat at the 'Texas Roadhouse' today for my moms Birthday.  My whole family from Auburn was coming into town, and while it sucks that I didnt get to see them, it was worth the sacrifice.  And man oh man, do I love me some Texas Roadhouse...but the thought of putting anymore junk into my body really repulses me.  

My Brand New Baby-Blue

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I am currently writing to you all from the comfort of my couch!!  My wonderful and lovely boyfriend let us buy a new laptop for the house…well, I say for the “house” to sound nice, but really its just for me LOL.  I am using this crazy little thing called ‘Windows Live Writer’ to write this blog.  Pretty neat!!  As a mac girl, I must say that so far I am very impressed with this.

I’m at a computer all day at work, so the last thing I want to do when I get home is sit at another desk.  But this way I can sit back and relax and hopefully become more involved in not only my own blog, but in others as well. 

I went to the store today to pick up all the ingredients for the new recipe I am going to try tomorrow.  I also remembered to stop and get a battery for my camera.  I can not wait to take pictures and blog the recipe!!  Seems silly and trivial, but whatever…it excites me!

On a WW note…I have not been very good the past day or two.  Yesterday I didnt track and I indulged in some fatty foods, and of course, plenty of beer!  This morning I had good intentions on getting back on track, but we took the boy to breakfast and well, I guess I didnt do too bad, but not great either.  We are having my mother over for dinner today and I am making lasagna.  Also she asked for Frankie to make his delicious devil eggs…uh oh!  SO needless to say, it looks like today will be another day of not working out, and not tracking….I’m going to let this slide though and not beat myself up about it.  I’ve been doing amazingly well lately so I’m going to cut myself some slack.  Tomorrow is a new day.  I will pick myself up and start fresh tomorrow!!

Part Deux: The Dress...Arrived!!

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The dress arrived today!!!!  And I must say that I am VERY, VERY happy with it. 


It's not too tight or too loose.  I'll still be able to enjoy my dinner in it, LOL.  The color red is fantastic and really compliments my skin tone.  I'm so excited for Valentines Day!!!! 

So I'm thinking no necklace, but bling-tastic earrings.  Hair worn down but straightened nice and slick but with lots of volume  No stockings, but I have been using my Jergens tinted moisturizer to help take the 'Casper-esque' glow off of my legs.  And of course finish it all off with a killer black high heel. ;-)

Any thoughts or suggestions??

The Dress!!

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Oh the dress, the dress, the dress. Some women dream about what their wedding dress will look and feel like….I’m not one of those women. Instead, I dream about my Valentines Day dress!! What’s the big deal about some stupid Valentines dress you ask?? The big deal is finally being able to pull off a vision I have had in my head for over 2 years now. A vision that I have worked my ass off to try and achieve. I’ve ran miles and miles and tracked, tracked, tracked just to get me that much closer to this vision. And the time has finally come, and the vision is almost 3D completion.

I've never been a big Valentines Day person funny enough. I always thought it was ridiculous that there is a “holiday” in which you are supposed to show your partner nothing but love and attention and make sure that they know you love them so…….aren’t we supposed to do that pretty much everyday?? But, I have become a sucker for the V-day. It’s the one time of the year that my boyfriend & I splurge and go out to a fancy dinner. We go to Delmonico’s Steakhouse and get the steak and lobster meal, about $80 a piece. We normally have to wait, standing up, for about 3 hours just to be seated. The bar makes a killing on Frankie & I alone LOL. By the time we get seated we are starving and usually demolish our food in minutes. Then head back home in a food coma….But it’s all worth it!! We normally don’t have the funds to do Christmas and birthday presents for each other, so this is our moment to give to each other.

Plus, after knowing each other for over 10 years, it was a conversation on the phone Valentines Day night that made us realize there was something stronger between us, so its all kind of bittersweet.

Last Valentines Day, I was down maybe around 25 lbs and I was feeling pretty good. I found an old dress I had in the closet and I surprised him by wearing it to dinner. It really wasn’t anything special but he loved it! Now, I’m down 55.6 lbs….I can definitely trump last year!! So here it is….


This dress is exactly what I envisioned my self wearing a few years ago. It’s sleek and sexy. Just the right mixes of nice and naughty. I can’t wait to walk down those stairs, turn the corner, and see his reaction. This dress is 90% for him, and 10% for me…ok, maybe a little more than 10% for me, but being able to wear something like this for him really means a lot to me. I spent the first 2 years of us being together getting fat again, so being able to show off to him in this dress is a great sense of accomplishment.
My dress is about to be in the hands of UPS and should hopefully arrive to me soon. I’ll know a better date tomorrow. I’m really hoping that it fits and that the image I have in my head, which I have worked so damn hard for, comes out to be pretty close.  The dress also has that ShapeFX stuff in it to hopefully tuck and hide some of my "problem" areas, lol. I still have to go find some killer black stilettos. I’m thinking I’m going to bare-leg it, only because I’m afraid black back-seam stocking would over kill the dress. Any thoughts??

And of course, once I put the dress on, there will be a whole other blog about the dress again….with pictures of course! ;-)

Owning your own shadows....

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Image can be found here

This blog post is not about food, or exercise, or weight loss. This post is about owning your own shadows and the difficulties that arise while trying to do so. It’s also very long…

Owning the deepest, darkest parts of me is something that I have struggled with since I was a young girl…very young, 5 or 6 years old perhaps. I remember being a little girl and listening to ‘Dream Weaver’ by Gary Wright (kick ass song!!) on my Sesame Street Big Bird record player and day dreaming about what my funeral would be like, or how would I die…it was mostly always self-inflicted. Wow, is this what an only child thinks about at this age??

I would love to say that I quickly grew out of that phase and went on to lead a normal child-teen-age life. I guess the thing that always kept me going was my deep desire to “understand”. I always wanted to know “why does this song trigger this emotion in me? What does this emotion mean? Where does it come from? How do I deal with this emotion? Where do I put this emotion?” It is my personal belief that we are very multi-faceted when it comes to our personalities. I fully, 100% believe that you can be that loving wife in the kitchen and that dirty whore in the bedroom. It’s about balance. It’s about learning what parts of you need to be where and when. Until you accept that there is a side to yourself that is quote on quote “dark” or “dirty”, you will forever be fighting with those sides, and it will turn up at times and places when you least expect it.

I had an incident like this, this past Friday. Frank was downstairs playing his video game & Damon was in his room playing his. I decided to go upstairs to our bedroom, grab some beers, and watch some “girly” movies. I ended up picking out Grey’s Anatomy Season 2. It’s been awhile since I had seen any real good Grey’s episodes so I thought…’perfect! Plus Frank hates watching Grey’s so now is a better time than any!’ Watching a few certain episodes brought me back to a very dark place in my life….a place with MANY shadows, which on most days, I wish to hide from. Far too many beers later, anger & sadness, and a desperate need to fall asleep to get away from it later, ended up in me making a very stupid decision and proceeding to throw up all over the bed room. Frankie didn’t end up coming upstairs till 3:30 am (he’s obsessed with Call of Duty right now) & by that time I was passed out and had given some effort to clean up my mess.

I spent the next morning, well A.) Resting!! And B.) Trying to figure out why I dealt with those shadows in the manner that I did. Everyone is allowed a little time to beat them selves up now and then. Sometimes that can be a healthy exercise. Of course…mixing alcohol or any time of mind altering substance into that party can never result in a positive outcome. Some people look to go to these shadows with food (like binge eating), or even exercise (you can get addicted to exercise in a bad way, strange I know!). You need to find out where these shadows are and how they reflect inside of yourself, but you just need to be careful on how to go about finding them. But please, take the journey!!

I know what shadows I stepped into that Friday night. I’ve been there before, with a sober mind and spirit. I’m ok with what they represent and while they contain a side of myself I never thought I’d see, I know that realizing that I have that shadow, and own that shadow, it has brought much light into my life.
This particular shadow is one that has been put in the cupboards so to speak. She is strong, and vigil and she will fight for what she wants. She’s also a little bit evil, but one hot devil is disguise. I often forget about this shadow and I guess this was her way of letting me know that I am still strong and can fight against some sins. Hopefully next time though, we can just have a cup of tea or something…not 19 beers.

Note:  There is an amazing book called 'Owning Your Own Shadow : Understanding the Dark Side of the Psyche' by Robert A. Johnson.  I highliy recommend it.  You can find it here

Making the most out of what you got

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I always seem to have the hardest time finding something that is filling, fast, and WW friendly about 90% of the time for lunch.  We luckily get an hour for lunch and live right around the corner from where we work, so Frank and I always go home and make our lunch there. 
Once I get there, I usually find my staple item...for example, a can of tuna fish (what can I eat with this besides bread? Multi-grain WW chips maybe?) or deli ham (could this go in a fiber and nutrient bed of salad greens?).  I'm always trying to find a way to "spruce up" my lunches but without adding a ton of points.  Sometimes it can be a success.  Like today! 

Now...just to get this out of the way, I in no way, shape, or form condone eating frozen meals all of the time.  Not that there is anything wrong with them, and they really make some peoples lives and diets a lot easier and thats great for them!!  Personally, my body just hates the added sodium and they always leave me feeling flat and not full.  BUT, that is not to say that due to whatever $$ I do or do not have that week or what I'm sick of eating or not eating, that I do not buy an occasional Lean Cuisine or Smart Ones.  This week, we were strapped for cash and my local supermarket had them on sale.  I decided to buy a few to help spice up my lunches that have been filled with a lot of soup and salad recently.

Here is how I simply made my boring 6-point Santa Fe Rice & Beans Frozen meal, a more hearty and better tasting 8 point lunch!:

Please excuse the poor photography again.  My camera still isnt fixed so I'm stuck taking pictures with my ancient phone.  I figured something was better than nothing!

Here are my ingredients..minus the hot sauce which I forgot to put in with the group. The flour tortilla was 2 pts, the Lean Cuisine was 6 pts, & the FF Sour Cream & Jalapeños were 0 pts.


There's the hot sauce!!  Also a great 0 pt condiment (I use hot sauce ALOT). Look at how much left over rice & beans I have that I can eat after my burrito!  It's like getting two lunches for the price of one!


Ok honestly, this picture doesn't look crazy appetizing, LOL.  But it was really good!!  And crazy filling.  I'm stuffed!!


I feel like I made the most of something I wasn't crazy about eating in the first place, and really turned it into a fulfilling meal.  I still have 13 points left over for an afternoon snack & dinner!! 

Sometimes, just thinking outside the box (haha, get it, frozen meal box...oh, errr....nevermind) and getting a little creative with items you already have at your disposal, can make all the difference in your diet.
I hope everyone is having a great day!!

5 Miles!!

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If there is one memory from my old days back in grade school that I hate to think about, it would be having to run the dreaded mile.  This was an excruciating task for me.  I wasn't even heavy then either!  Just the thought of running had me gasping for air.  Of course, I did have mild asthma so that was always my excuse to the gym teacher as to why I was keeled over on the side.  ;-)
I always envied the other girls who could run though.  They always looked so graceful and so happy to be swirling around the track.  I hated them.

Then today....I ran 5 miles.


This is the farthest I have ever ran in one straight workout.  A complete 5.03 miles, 54 minutes & 15 seconds, a pace of 10'47"...without stopping once. 

I will admit that when I got to about 2.5 miles, all I could think about was stopping.  I thought "really??  I have to do this all over again pretty much?!?!".  It was a mental battle that I knew I would have with myself at some point.  Then I started thinking about what I've already accomplished.....running my very first 5K last October, then doing another one in November.  It was about May of last year when I started the C25K program and could barely run for 30 seconds!!  I did end up ditching that program and went with my own rhythm.   I thought about the Rock & Roll 1/2 Marathon thats in Philadelphia this September that I am going to be running in!!  5 miles in nothing compared to that!  I also thought about that gorgeous dress I found online for Valentines day and how the miles that I was running were shedding more pounds away to make me and that dress even more fabulous!!  

Once I got to about the 3.5 mile, I knew the end was coming near, and I knew that I could do it!!  So thanks to strong fight I put up with my mind, and the tunes that helped to carry me along the way...I got to the 5 miles I promised myself I would get to this weekend.

There's no better feeling in the world than knowing that you have accomplished something.  Especially when you've always thought you couldn't.  To a lot of people, 5 miles isnt much, but to me and at this time in my life, it's a mountain!  I can't wait to reach my next goal...running a 10K distance.

A HUGE Thank You to you all...

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I want to send out an ENORMOUS thank you to all my Blog followers (all 12 of you, LOL) and to all the wonderful people over on the Weight Watcher message boards!!  All of your gracious, nice, and extremely flattering comments really mean a lot to me....the world to me!!  I could have not gotten this far without everyone's support and the inspiration everyone has given me.

As each day goes by I get more and more excited to come and blog to all of you.  I've been compiling a list (of course!) of things I want to blog about in the future.  Each day I learn some new trick or trade, and hopefully this blog with continue to grow with that knowledge.  I'm hoping to get my digital camera up and working so I can start taking some pictures.  I'd love to do a recipe feature next week!!

Thank you SO, SO very much everyone!!  I enjoy sharing my successes with you all and I cant wait to keep sharing!!

With Love- Suzi   

Progress Pictures

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I was going to wait until tomorrow to post this blog but I think I will do it tonight.  Being back at my first WW meeting since the Christmas holiday, I was down 1 lb!!  Not bad considering I had a little bit of a binge at New Years.  This puts me at a total of 52.8 lbs lost total so far.  That amazes me!!  I can't believe I have come that far.  It seems just like yesterday I was telling my ww gals that I have 80 lbs to lose.

Anyways....I am finding the strength to post these....so here they are:

I was probably close to 260 here.                               
About 5 months before I rejoined WW                                

I had lost a good amount, but I wasnt serious about WW










And then today!!

Ready to take action and kick out those last pounds!!


















When I lost 80 lbs before on WW, I felt that I could take on the world.  In reality....I was blinded.  So much had changed in my life.  The man I had spent 7 years of my life with, I decided I no longer wanted to spend any more with.  I had realized that my college degree had been wasted, yet I was comfortable.  I got into another relationship that was built on lies and desires...and then I found love and life...and gained the 80 lbs back. :-)

This time....my focus is on me and the life I want for myself.  I know the others around me are here for me and I want them right where they are.  I have about, well...19 more lbs to get to where I will have started off thinking, and less than 15 to be where I was when I first started the first time.  I cant believe I am already out of the 200's!!!! 

The greatness has just begun!!

Also, as I mentioned before...We met our new leader tonight and she is AWESOME!!  She is so much fun.  She is a behavioral psychologist which should be interesting.  And she is goofy, and sometimes talkative, but in a super fun way!!  I am really looking forward to learning from her.    

Take me to your leader!!

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Photo was found here

Ok...not THAT leader!! 

My last Weight Watchers meeting was December 17th, 2009. This one was monumental for me in many different ways. I got my 50 lbs lost award, but at the same time I was in a lot of pain and pretty drugged up from just having some oral surgery done the day before. Unfortunately I could not stay for my meeting that night and I will probably never forget that one I missed for this reason....


My leader, Chris, pulled me off to the side to tell me that tonight was her last meeting. I was devastated!! Here I was, getting my 50 lb award, and it seemed like everything else was falling apart. I was so upset that I couldn’t not stay (and believe me, I SO wanted to) and be in her very last WW meeting. She gave me a great big hug and told me that I have been doing amazing and to keep up the great work and keep the rest of the members laughing. I cried like the little girl that I am. Then she gave me my award in front of all the people that were already there. I will miss her so much and I'm so sad that that is how I had to say goodbye...but I guess I should be happy that I got to say goodbye, because I almost didn’t go at all, but Frank offered to bring me over there real quick so I could weigh-in at least.

Well, tonight I get to see what damage I did or may have un-done and I get to meet our new leader!! I'm excited & nervous. I've had some bad experiences with some leaders in the past. Let me be honest & put it this way....there are a lot of old crotchety old bags that work & go to WW. For some reason when they see me, you know, the girl with black hair and tattoo's all over, apparently they think I am going to cause trouble. I mean seriously....what am I possibly going to do?? Steal your bag of baby carrots out of your car or something?? Anyways....I am trying to keep an open, positive mind that the new leader will be GREAT! And if she gives me a funny look off the bat, I will be sure to let her know that her carrots are safe with me. ;-)


 

Tea, Tea, Tea!

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Crappy Photo courtesy of your truly (& my crappy cell phone cause my camera is dead)

I have always been a fan of tea's.  Hot & cold, red & green...pretty much a lover of them all.  When my lovely Best Friend Kimberly recently asked me if I tried White tea; I replied with a "I'm not sure."  Well I picked some up at Wegmans (our local grocery store) and I fell in love all over again with tea!!
Yes, I have tried this before!!  I used to get different versions at this tea house downtown I've been to (but sadly haven't frequented in over a year).  Well thanks to Kim, I have been reminded of the greatness of that is white tea.

Not only is it amazingly tasty, but it is SUPER good for you!!  Way more antioxidants and benefits than green tea.  Due to the popularity of green tea (which I still love of course) white tea is sadly put to the back burner of peoples mind. 

So, tonight, I have put down my beer and picked up a delicious cup of warm, white tea!!

Valentines Day Challenge!

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So I have started a challenge with a few other of my Weight Watcher buddies.  This one is for Valentines Day and it is to lose 10 lbs by February 14th, 2010 (duh! lol).  Normally I am not big on setting weight loss goals like this, but I dont feel that it is not too extreme or far out there to try and accomplish.  The way I have been averaging I think there is a good chance I can make it, or get pretty close.

This gives me a little over a month to be almost back to where I was weight wise when Frankie and I got together.  We go out to a really nice place for dinner each year and last year (I was only down about 20 lbs at that point) I got all dressed up and he REALLY enjoyed that.  I can't wait to see how sluty.....errr, I mean sexy, I can be this year ;-)

What to do in 2010??

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I'm not a girl who really believes in making a New Years Resolution.  There is so much pressure applied to them and usually by the 3rd week most people have forgotten what resolution they even made!  Instead, I like to make a list (I'm a person who LOVES lists, and I make them for just about everything) of what I call "goals" for 2010.  These are things that I am hoping to do or at least try to do.  There's nothing extreme like end world hunger or anything, but sometimes it's the small things you do that add up to make one big great feeling.  So here is my list for 2010:
  1. To lose another 35-45 lbs.-  I am already down 51.8 (ok, im probably up a few cause of the holidays but thats according to my last WI a few weeks ago) and losing at least another 35 will put at a place that is close to my goal and will let me become a Lifetime Member.
  2. Train for & run the Philly Rock & Roll 1/2 Marathon- I plan to get in a good amount of 5K's and run my very first 10K this spring & through the summer.  The 1/2 marathon is in September and I know I will be ready!  Plus my boyfriend and I are going to make a mini vacation out of it!!
  3. Go to the Dentist for a cleaning- Dentist=Devil. If you know me personally I just went through some oral surgery and it was awful.  I hate the sound/smell...everything! But I will go & get a cleaning this year....I guess :-/
  4. Schedule a physical with my Dr.- After having a health scare with my heart this past fall, I feel its important I go and get a full physical done at some point.  I figure sometime in the spring, once my running is back to full gear, will be a good time. Also, Sheryl and her wonderful blog *Bitch Cakes* inspired me to do this.  Her blog inspires me to do a lot of stuff though, so I would definitely check it out!
  5. Start getting into Yoga again- I used to do this a few times a week.  I have the dvd's and everything.  I would like to do it at least once a week from home.
  6. Take a family vacation- With my Frankie and his 11 year old son....and not spaze out the whole time ;-)
  7. Learn how to do a pushup!- I've already enlisted my boyfriend to train me
  8. Go to the eye Dr's- I normally do this anyways, because I have to get my contacts...I'm really blind.  But I threw it on this list because I figured it was an easy one to cross off ;-)
  9. Start painting/drawing again- I went to college to be a graphic designer...got my degree in multi-media design & what do I do?  Sell fasteners, LOL. I want to get back into art, more so just for myself rather than for anything else.
  10. No or WAY less Fast Food-  I dont eat a lot of it now, obviously.  But I probably have it at least twice a month. Usually Thursdays after my meetings I give myself a "free pass" and Frankie normally goes to play guitar with his buddies shortly after I get home, so I just grab something quick. If I'm going to give myself a "free pass" I'm going to try and have it be with something homemade.  
  11. Try one new WW recipe a month- Whether I find it online, their magazine or at my meeting.  I want to try at least 1 new WW recipe a month. 
  12. Start a blog- DONE!!  As I said yesterday, I've thought about it for months now. The thing that held me back the most is that I'm not big on certain aspects of the internet....you'll never find me on facebook or myspace, and even my twitter account is protected.  The way I think...if you don't know whats going on with my right now in my life, it's because I don't want you too. But I get so inspired by other peoples blogs, and through Emily's (here adorable blog is here: Sassy Smolak )"DO IT" e-mails, I decided to give it a go.
So there it is...my list of goals for 2010!!  2009 was a tough year for me...my mom had skull replacement surgery, I had a few health issues, there were a lot of deaths around us, financially we have been struggling big (and still are! c'mon taxes!) but I also had a lot of triumphs.  I lost a ton of weight, I became a runner, I've made a great re-connection in my life with an old friend (Kim!!).  I normally don't like to say stuff like this, but I have a feeling that 2010 is going to be good year!!  I see a lot of self growth.  Here's to a happy & healthy one for all!!!!!

My very first ever blog post!

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Hello out there, to all the no bodies who will probably every read this.
My name is Susan and I'm an alcoholic....ok not really...well maybe a little.  Anywho...I have been contemplating starting a blog for a few months now and I decided that what better way to start one but in the beginning of a new year!  So I can officially say that I have checked 1 thing already off of my list of goals for 2010...GO ME!!

I have been a member of Weight Watchers for over a year now and so far I am down 51.8 lbs!!  This is my second time around the WW circuit, but this time is for keeps.  After getting out of a long relationship, then getting into a great new one (you will hear about him I am sure, so just to introduce, his name is Frank and he is turning 40 this year....sucker!) I guess I just let myself get too comfortable and stopped focusing on me.  Thankfully though, I "woke up" one day and starting taking care of myself again.   

Also, I became a runner last year.  I completed 2 5K's towards the end of the year and I cannot wait till spring so I can get involved with more.  Also I am planning on running the Rock & Roll 1/2 Marathon in Philadelphia on September 19th, 2010!!

And....I love beer.  And lots of it.  I was blessed with being able to down 1/2 a 30-rack and barely catch a buzz on it.  Thats great for my head...not so great for my waist.  My struggle with trying to maintain a "healthy" relationship with beer is an ongoing battle.  Speaking of that, I think it's time for a beer....
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