Saturday, February 27, 2010

Met my Gym Goal!!!

I DID IT!  I FINALLY DID IT!!!! WORKED OUT 5 DAYS THIS WEEK!!!  Monday, Wednesday (with the trainer) Thursday, Friday and today (Saturday)!  I cannot remember the last time I worked out 5 days in 1 week!  I definitely never have done it consistently (beyond playing sports in high school) and definitely never at the top of my weight loss, only when I was already at my goal weight.  I am so proud of myself.   You just don't know!!!

Okay some new things I have been trying - tracking.  Yes, I am returning to my Weight Watchers' roots and tracking everything that I eat.  I tell you - this works for me!!!  I am so conscious of popping something in my mouth if I know it will be in black & white later.  Instead of using a paper tracker, I have been logging everything online at  This is an awesome website!  All you have to do is begin typing in the name of the food and the nutritional information is already in the site!  Less work on me and I so appreciate it!

I am looking really forward to seeing great results with this.  The Fat Smash Diet is not one where you have to count calories and such, but I like knowing exactly what I have eaten.  As I said, I make better choices while tracking, plus with everything right in front of me I can see what is working and what doesn't work.  One thing I think I did in the beginning was to not eat ENOUGH food. Also, you can build recipes there with specific brands of food and it will add up the caloric information.  Very awesome site.  I just began following this WONDERFUL blog Getting Healthy with Melissa and she recently began tracking and lost a whopping 2.7 lbs this week!  I only hope to have the same success!  Melissa is also in the "Cute as a Bunny" Challenge.

Wish me luck this week - my miniature goal is to drink 64 oz. of water per day. 

Friday, February 26, 2010

No Loss No Gain...

So I weighed in yesterday and the scale read 167.0.  At first I was thoroughly upset - after all for the previous 2 weeks I had been losing 2 lbs per week and I had definitely stepped up my exercising!!! SO WTH?!?!  Then it hit me - my guilty pleasure I had been indulging in had caught up to it.  I have some chocolate fondue chips (round pieces of pure milk chocolate) that I have been nibbling on daily.  A few pieces here and a few pieces there.  I didn't think it was too damaging because despite having them I had continued to lose.  But this week, I guess it caught up to me.  I have a tiny bit left and I am debating about tossing the rest.  If I could limit myself to 1-2 pieces just to satisfy my sweet tooth it would be perfect.  But the chances of that happening are slim-to-none.  I know that I do not have that kind of discipline and self-control which is why I never even bring "allowed" sweets into my home unless they are in pre-determined portion sizes (i.e. 100 calorie packs).  So lesson learned, bits of chocolate MUST GO!

On another note - working out has been going well.  I got a couple of new gym outfits, and for me its just like buying new clothes for a party, it helps me look forward to it a little more.  I got them from TJ Maxx so for both outfits and a zip-up sweatshirt it was only $45 after my 10% sales tax.  Pretty good, huh?  I still have not had my measurements taken which is why I haven't shared.  Yesterday I worked out with the trainer and he does a combination of strength and cardio training.  Today, I went to the gym again and used the treadmill.  I walked for 10 minutes at a speed of 3.5 and incline 4.0 then upped it to a light jog at speed 4.5 for 2 minutes.  I did this for a total of 3 cycles.  I also jumped rope for 5 minutes.  I felt SOOOOO good about myself when I finished.

Afterwards I stretched really well and then decided to unwind in the sauna.  I took a cue from my favorite beauty blogger, Traycee at Keep It Simple Sista and saturated my hair with Mane n' Tail conditioner, covered with a plastic bag and RELAXED while I deep conditioned.  My hair feels so so so so soft!!!  I am ecstatic that I tried this technique!  The sauna also helped relieve some of the tightness that had been plaguing my thighs as well.

Dinner tonight was quick and easy - as usual!  I grilled a Jennie-O Turkey Burger (the frozen straight to grill kind) marinated in Mesquite sauce, portabello mushroom caps (used instead of bread or roll), and some chopped tomatoes, onions and green peppers on my George Foreman.  It only took a total of 10 minutes to grill all of that and assemble my burger!  I enjoyed that with a side salad and believe was so TASTY!   

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I just love Raven-Symone!

I've always loved Raven-Symone!  She is only a bit younger than me and I love her self-confidence, her business savvy, her frank honesty.  I've always identified with her weight "issues" (although I am not actually sure she has any in her own head) because she looks absolutely stunning at any size.  And if I do say so do I!  LOL.  No seriously, I gain about 20 lbs before people really see it.  Like some may notice 10-15 lbs if I say something, but usually its about a 20 lbs fluctuation before I get comments.  I'm very proportioned, and I maintain that hourglass figure (roughly) even at 170+ although it is much sloppier!  I feel that is exactly how Raven-Symone is....when she is heavier, she still looks great because all the pieces are in proper "order".  I mean the boobs are bigger than the stomach, thighs & hips are curvy, booty is rounder than belly, etc.  So I've always identified with her body in my mind.  As Wendy Williams says "she's been a friend in my head for years!"  Anywhoooo, I noticed last year that she reportedly lost 35 lbs!  How ironic is it that that is the exact amount of weight I am going to lose (notice I did not say trying to lose)?!  HOW IRONIC THAT SHE WENT FROM 170 TO 135?!?!?!?!  I don't know if or how she has maintained it, Speaking of Wendy, I actually just saw her on an episode of  The Wendy Williams Show (note how she is ranting about blogs, don't worry girl, this is a good one! lol), and although she looked fabulous, to me she looked a just a tag heavier than when she was on Tyra.  To my eye, she looked svelte & healthy at both appearances, and I know she does not desire to be thin but HOORAY for losing to a healthy weight!!!  That's how you campaign being curvy & healthy!!!  Go Raven!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Snack with Purpose!

Avoid what Dr. Ian calls "empty calories" - food that serves no purpose to your body.  They don't refuel, they aren't part of a major food group, basically all they do is taste good and add pounds!  Examples include alcohol, candy, cake, etc.  Even when you are eating something purely for pleasure, try to make it a healthy choice that satisfies a healthy requirement from the food pyramid. For example - I was watching NBC's The Biggest Loser and there was blatant advertisment of the new frozen smoothies from Yoplait.  Now I don't mind the advertisement, in fact I discovered a great new food, but I have to admit it is cheesy the way they try to act as if they are having casual conversation and just happen to give ALL of the product details!  lol.  Anyway, these smoothies are an awesome option because it can serve as a snack, beverage, and/or breakfast and also contains a serving of dairy as well as a full serving of fruit!!!! You will have satisfied your sweet tooth, filled up, and eaten fruit all for only 110 calories (snacks should always be less than 200 calories). You can find the smoothie mix in your frozen food aisle - trust me these things are amazing, even kids will love them! Other purposeful snack options would be: regular yogurt or pudding (dairy), baked apples with cinnamon or frozen grapes (fruit), or baby carrots with fat free dip (vegetables). I hope you find the following links helpful!

Yoplait Smoothies
Healthy Food Pyramid Weight Loss Tool

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Don't you hate....

You know what I hate?  When you are excited about your weight loss, have worked hard...written down every morsel that goes into your mouth, cut out meat or carbs, weighed out your food, calculated portions, whatever it is you are doing to lose weight and have gotten a little bit of success - and when you share the good news with someone they TRUMP it?!  I recently told my brother I lost 10 lbs since the beginning of January (I lost a few before starting the Fat Smash Diet) and here he comes Well, I've lost 14.  Don't nobody care about you and your 14 lbs!!!!!!! Stop killing my joy and stealing my sunshine!  My brother is the type of person who never has more than 10-15 lbs to lose at any given time anyway.  He's 5'5'' and at most has weighed 160 lbs.  So you can see why I was not thrilled  when he shared his weight loss with me!

Let me have my moment and enjoy my hard work!  Sheesh!

Friday, February 19, 2010

More about me!

I've already explained that I wanted anonymity while chronicling my weight loss journey.  However that doesn't mean that I cannot share anything about myself!  Lol.  Well for beginners I am an African American woman in my late twenties.  Something I hope you will find interesting is that I am in medical school.  Yep, in a couple of years I will officially be "Dr. Princess"!  Hahaha!  Seriously, that is one of my many motivators to stay healthy.  Aside from my own personal reasons, I really want to be an example to my patients.  I will be a family physician and I believe wholeheartedly in preventive medicine.  I think my impact on my patients' health will be greater if I am a living example.  It is as difficult for adults as it is for children who hear their parents preach "do as I say not as I do/did" to listen to someone who clearly is not following their own advice!  So from time to time, I will post from a very "medical" standpoint, and now you know why! 

Some of my other motivations to lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle, in no particular order:
  • To be an example to my own family of someone who has real life struggles with weight, but doesn't just lose throw in the towel.
  • To practice preventive medicine ON MYSELF!  My mother has diabetes, my father high cholesterol and they are in their early 50's.  My extended family, too many illnesses to list, but all the typical diseases that run in the black community are present in my family also, plus a couple of others.
  • To find a good relationship.  Now before you go all Sistah Soulja on me, let me explain.  I don't mean I need to lose weight to attract a man, although I do not think that notion is entirely false either.  It is just that I attract men, regardless of my weight (not speaking conceitedly, just being honest) so that is definitely not what I mean with this motivator.  What I mean is that I am unhappy with myself right now.  I'm not depressed about my weight, don't hate myself or looking in the mirror - but I do hate the way certain clothes fit.  I hate the size that I wear, hate that I cannot wear certain trends because they would look awful on my cellulite laden body, hate that I am so self conscious of my body when taking pictures, am in a bathing suit, etc.  I strongly believe that in order to find/begin a fulfilling, healthy relationship with a man (or woman for that matter if that is your preference) you have to be happy with yourself.  So that is what I am working on.
  • To be an example for my (future) children.  My parents were always hyper-aware of my weight and body type, more accurately.  They knew that given my family history and racial legacy of obesity, I would most likely be faced with the same issues.  Especially since, I have never been a "skinny" person.  Thin yes, skinny, no.  So while they made me aware of keeping my weight controlled, it didn't have an impact at all on me.  Why?  Because all they did was talk!  Telling me to watch my weight and not to become like my other relatives was almost pointless - though not completely - because I didn't know how.  I have always been athletic, so playing sports is what kept me thin and in shape in high school.  And even though neither of my parents were morbidly obese (or even looked obese to the "American" eye), they were clearly carrying extra weight, yet I never saw them do anything to lose weight or control it.  Exercising was never a way of life for them.  Healthy eating wasn't necessarily either.  I mean, we didn't survive off of fried and fat laden foods, no....and my mom did make "balanced" meals and provide healthy snacks for my brother and I.  But they had the same struggles they were trying to prevent me from having to go through: being thin up until adulthood, gaining weight in their twenties and continuing as they aged.  I remember my mom doing a number of things, but never sticking to anything, never exercising regularly.  She would go through phases of buying workout tapes, visiting the track to walk, and the infamous Slim-Fast shakes - but she never got all the components of weight loss and healthy living in balance.  Making healthy low-calorie meals, exercising, portion control, eating 5-6 servings of fruits/vegetables per day, drinking 6 glasses of water per day, etc.  If she was walking 3 days a week, she was visiting McDonald's 4 days!  And my father was not much better.  To be honest vanity was more of a driving factor with them than health because of that, they never got to the point of "roly-poly" but my parents never were examples of how to prevent the "i've become an adult, my metabolism has slowed" inevitable weight gain they always warned me about.
  • To be an example to my (future) children - I want to do exactly what my parents weren't able to do for me.  This is so important to me, I had to list it twice!
  • To feel better about me.  I inherited that same vanity I said my parents possess.  But I like being thin!  I like how I feel about myself when I weigh 135 lbs. or less.  I like how clothes fit.  I like being able to walk up several flights of stairs, even in heels, without feeling like I need oxygen to be fed to me!  I like not having to hide how heavily I breathe after doing anything slightly physical, walk up a hill, up stairs, carry a bag, play with my little cousins, etc.  I like being able to show my parents that I DID DO IT!  I like everything about being thin, fit, and healthy.  My skin is clearer, my hair is healthier, my nails grow longer.  All adds up to a better me.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Working it Out!!!

I have a home gym.  Not one of those bowflex types of machines, but enough equipment that I literally have a home gym.  I will be posting pictures of my fitness space soon.  I have a NordicTrack elliptical machine, on of the steps from The Firm workout system, a 9 lb body bar, dumbells (2, 5 and 10 lbs), resistance bands (both handled and non), a body bar, and thigh master.  Not to mention the couple of workout DVD's I own & Exercise TV On Demand.  WHEW!  Now, there is absolutely no reason I cannot workout regularly, right?!  Oh and I forgot to mention that my apartment complex has a workout room.

With all of that, what I am about to say may make absolutely NO SENSE to you...but I will share nonetheless.  I joined a gym.  Wait wait wait, before you gasp and wonder why I would waste my money, let me explain!  I am trying to figure out all of my shortcomings and roadblocks and what I can do to overcome them.  And to be honest, working out regularly is a challenge for me.  And beyond that, working out with intensity is difficult for me.  So, when I kept seeing a special for a local gym for $14.95 per month with a month-to-month contract, I absolutely HAD to learn more.  Once I went in, I saw some machines that of course would help me tone certain areas that I may not be able to do on my own, but does that justify me joining, even if it is only $15?!  The answer is no.  I joined specifically to hire a personal trainer.  My mother hired one a few months ago and got fantastic results.  I wanted to hire a trainer for a number of reasons, please allow me to share:
  • To be pushed beyond my comfort zone and my own limitations.  This will really accelerate my weight lose, help me to burn more calories, and get my trouble zones toned more quickly.
  • To force me to exercise regularly.  If I make an appointment, I am going to keep it.  That is really simple enough.
  • Its the "accountability" factor.  If I have to weigh in & have my measurements taken in front of someone I'm going to do what I have to do to get those results.  I think that is why Weight Watchers worked for me also.
  • I want to get my money's worth.  I won't slack off when working with the trainer because I am paying my good money for it!
So I begin tomorrow - I chose to work with a man.  Am I setting the feminist movement back by admitting that I prefer a man to work me out?  For whatever reason I feel they will be able to push me harder and get better results.  If it was Jillian Michaels (of NBC's The Biggest Loser) I wouldn't feel that way, but the woman I witnessed in action today had such a soft-spoken, quiet demeanor....and that is NOT what I want.  I want someone who is going to MAKE me work hard!!!!  My body fat percentage is 34.6%...I will let you know my measurements tomorrow.  They will be taking a before picture because they "felt" I would be a good advertisement person (I will be posting a pic of my body only).  Another point of accountability - they had full confidence that I would be an awesome client and I will be damned if I prove them wrong!

Understanding your BMI

One tool I try to adhere to is the body mass index measurement.  I think this is the most important number when accessing our health.  Not dress/pant size, not pounds or body fat percentage alone, and not body measurements.  Those are all good to know and track, but the BMI is what healthcare professionals use to access your risk for certain health issues, such as risk for suffering a heart attack.

Now, I know you've all heard the term "BMI" but do you really understand what it means? BMI stands for body mass index and is calculated using your height and weight and is an indirect measure of your body fat. The actual formula is: weight (kg) / [height (m)]2. BMI is a reliable screening tool used to show risk for certain diseases. It is not diagnostic - in other words, just because your BMI is high does not mean you have or will develop certain diseases. It simply means that you may be more likely than someone with a lower or "healthy" BMI.

BMI Categories:
  • Underweight = <18.5
  • Normal weight = 18.5-24.9
  • Overweight = 25-29.9
  • Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater
My BMI right now is 29.6!  I'm adding an exclamation point for two reasons, one I am overweight.  Two, I am happy because when I began I was obese, with a BMI of 30.7.  Gotta celebrate the little victories!

What is your BMI? Where should you be to be within a healthy BMI? Find out your BMI

Cute as a Bunny Challenge (Me So Hongry)

CHALLENNNNNNGGGGGEEEEE!  (for those avid Cosby Show fans, you know exactly how I said that!)

I just started following this great blog and as I was perusing through her posts, I found her challenge that began on Monday.  The idea is to lose 1 lb per week for 7 weeks until Easter.  I am so happy that I was able to join the challenge.  I currently weigh 167.  I really would like to lose 8 lbs or more to be in the 150's by Easter.

Challenge is ONNNNNNNN!

On another note, I am so happy to have discovered her blog.  I am getting to know her better via her past posts.  I thought I was the only embarrassed person who would admit to having gained back the weight lost with Weight Watchers.  Go visit her site for yourself, it really is a great blog.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Late with updating!

I totally have neglected my blog!!!  The importance of beginning this blog was not to gain followers, not to have a certain number of hits, etc. but to journal my innermost thoughts on losing weight.  Now that I have seemingly "left the building" for a few weeks let me recap the last few weeks.  I lost 3 lbs during my detox phase.  I was somewhat disappointed but realized I wasn't going to drop a big number for a few reasons:
  1. I did not exercise 5 days a week as I was supposed to - it was more like 2 days a week.  This is probably the #1 reason I didn't lose more.
  2. I don't weigh that much to begin with.  I am not minimizing my weight by any means.  I am overweight (yay for moving out of the obese category!) and I understand that.  But for most women in my weight category, losing between 1-2 lbs per week is normal.
That left me at 171.  I then entered Phase II of the diet and was doing really well, but then I left my parent's home and returned to school where I live alone.  Once I got back to my apartment, I did not have any food so I was eating out for a few days, didn't get right into exercising...yet again, and had a few "treats."  That being said, I did not gain any weight, but I did not lose anything either.

Now fast forward to today and I weigh 167.0 lbs!  YAY!  So in one month I have lost 6 lbs.  Not bad, but could be better.  I am definitely back on my game, eating extremely healthy and I have began exercising regularly - FINALLY!  I will give more details on my diet and exercise regimen in a separate post!  6 lbs down, approximately 1/5 of my goal!!!! Gotta celebrate the little victories!