Tag Archive: pride


Today is Father’s Day so of course I’m thinking about my dad. He passed away about 5 years ago and even though we didn’t talk everyday I still miss him. Growing up in my crazy house, visiting him and his wife every weekend was the one piece of normality I had. All I wanted was for him to be proud of me. I know there were plenty of things about my personality he just didn’t get and I wasn’t good at some of the things I think he hoped I would be, like golf, but I did feel that pride when I did well in school and kept myself out of trouble…most of the time. On those occasions when I did get out of line he didn’t yell or scream or worse, he just told me how disappointed he was. That was much more effective than anything else he could’ve done.

I always knew he was concerned about my weight. He tried to do something about it and get me to be more active, but there’s only so much a parent can do when they see their child once a week. Divorce, it’s not good. Avoid it. When I was in my late teens, I lost about 100lbs over the course of a year. He was SO proud of me. I could feel it like it was a tangible thing. Slowly but surely, I gained it back plus more…a lot more. When he came to visit (mostly to see his grandkids ha ha) I could tell it made him sad. I never felt that he didn’t love me, but I could see the disappointment in his eyes…not with me, but with the way my life was going. I wish he was alive now so he could see I’m back on track and helping others, too. I know he would be proud. 

Everyday I need something to motivate me. Most of the time I just keep telling myself, “50lbs, 50lbs, 50lbs,” but today I’m doing it for my dad.

10:40am Breakfast – 12oz water and 2 Beachbody Slimming Formula tablets, Chocolate Shakeology made with 4oz water, 4oz 1% milk, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, a little coconut extract and 3 ice cubes

1:00pm Snack – 1/2c low-fat cottage cheese

2:15pm – 12oz water

3:10pm WORKOUT (and an egg which I scarfed down just before starting) TurboFire HIIT15, FIRE55EZ and FIRE45 OH YEAH!!!  30oz water and 1 scoop or half a serving of P90X Results & Recovery Formula in some of it while doing 45

6:20pm Lunch – 12oz water and 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Chocolate Shakeology made with 8oz 1% milk, 1 scoop Shakeology Fiber Boost, 1 tsp instant coffee and 3 ice cubes – I didn’t do mocha because I was tired, but because it’s delicious

8:45pm Dinner – 12oz water with 2 Slimming Formula tablets, Guacamole Turkey Burger from Carl’s Jr. that my family brought home for me even though I didn’t ask for it. Other than the high sodium, it’s actually quite healthy for fast food…and tasty.

11:30pm Snack – 7oz Strawberries and 1 Fiber One Brownie, 12oz water

Total calories consumed – 1404 Total calories burned – 3985

Protein – 107g, Carbs – 167g, Fat – 39g, Fiber – 33g

Water – 90oz

Last day before 2nd weigh-in! Results with photos coming shortly!

Before I tell you how much I lost in this first week of my extreme personal challenge, I feel I must include this disclaimer. If you are trying to lose weight 2lbs a week is considered a healthy rate to shoot for. That means you have to burn 7000 calories more than you consume in that week or 1000 calories a day. What I am attempting is much more extreme than that…more along the lines of what you see on shows like Biggest Loser and Extreme Makeover: Weightloss Edition. Obviously it is possible for people who have a lot of weight to lose to go at a faster rate as long as it’s done properly. If you’re even considering doing something extreme (in other words, planning on losing more than 2 lbs a week) it is important that you see your doctor first and make sure you will be safe and healthy throughout the process. I have been posting my food intake as well as my workout schedule so you can how I’m doing it, but that doesn’t mean that you should do the exact same thing because there are many variables.

My goal is to lose 50lbs over the next two months. Like I said, that’s extreme. If I only had 50lbs to lose I would not expect to be able to do it that quickly. I have chosen to use Beachbody fitness programs as well as Shakeology (also from Beachbody) to get me there because I know they work. I became a Beachbody Coach because I believe in the products and am so thankful to be able to share them with people who are trying to live healthier and happier lives. If you are ready to make some positive changes I would love to help you. Contact me on facebook or twitter so we can talk.

Now for the results. I used the same scale in the same spot of the floor and it’s not broken. Drumroll please……

I lost 14.5lbs! 😀

I almost couldn’t believe it, but it’s true! And the changes I can see in my body don’t lie. I’m going to start taking a photo of myself each week in the same clothes so you can see the transformation and will start posting them once there are a couple to compare.

Now, the question is, how am I going to reward myself? It won’t be with food, that’s for sure! There’s no amount of cake or cookies or candy or ice cream or chips or whatever that could make me feel better than I do right now. I’m thinking some cute, new workout clothes are in order. 😉

I’m a little sad as I write this, not because I didn’t get great results from doing the TurboFire 5-Day Inferno, but because I don’t have numbers for you. And that’s what you really want, right? Numbers. I did weigh myself before I started and took measurements, too. The problem is that for some reason the measurements didn’t get saved so when I took them again at the end I could only compare the one I remembered. And as for the scale, it was at my friend’s house since I lent mine to someone who never returned it. Unfortunately, I didn’t get back over there after we finished the challenge so I don’t have an accurate “right after” weight.

Here’s what I do know. I lost 1 1/2 in. from my waist. That was the one measurement I do remember. My clothes fit better all over, especially in my hips and thighs.  I can see more definition in my arms. My whole torso feels stronger and less fluffy. By Day 4 my ring was flopping around on my finger. My energy increased day by day and I remembered how good it feels to really push through a tough cardio workout. I also remembered how easy it can be to prepare healthy meals and that portions don’t have to be huge to be satisfying. And most importantly, I remembered how much fun TurboFire is!

No doubt I’ll be doing the 5-Day Inferno again and next time I’ll be sure to share the results in the form of numbers. 😉

TurboFire 5-Day Inferno shopping list

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

One of the most interesting and exciting things about being human is that we have the power to change our circumstances by changing the way we think. Once we catch a bit of inspiration and turn our new thoughts into new behaviors incredible things happen. Since it is so easy to fall back into our old ways of thinking, it’s critical to protect our new, fragile, positive attitudes. Sadly, the people closest to us can be the ones who present the greatest danger.

In the past week, I’ve seen several instances where a friend was talked out of something that would’ve been so good for them by a friend or family member who probably thought they were protecting them from failure or disappointment. The problem with that is that if we don’t push ourselves to try new things or try something again after we’ve failed we will never change anything!

People think they know us and want us to feel good about ourselves. Unfortunately, the way they go about it isn’t always helpful. If I’m saying negative things about myself because I feel like I’m failing, I don’t need someone to baby me and say it’s ok to think that way. I need someone to tell me to stop it because they know I can do it! We need to encourage each other to be better, do more, and make positive changes; not to feel that it’s ok to beat ourselves up and stay where we are in life. I saw a perfect example of this on facebook the other day and I know the person meant well, but the situation made me want to scream.

If you’re trying to make positive changes DO NOT listen to people when they try to hold you back even when they think they’re being supportive. They probably don’t even realize they’re doing it. Just be aware of what they’re really saying and move on. If what they’re saying is reinforcing your negative self-talk, push those thoughts away and replace them with positive ones. Like Chalene Johnson says, “be your own biggest cheerleader”. You can do amazing things, but not if you continue to think about yourself and your life the same way.

If you’re one of those well-meaning friends or family members who feels like you’re protecting someone from disappointment please reconsider the way in which you show support. Instead of encouraging them not to try and to keep thinking the same way, show support by telling them you believe they can succeed. You have no idea how much that means to someone who’s decided to face a challenge and push forward. Not to sound cliché, but be part of the solution, not part of the problem. They will have moments when they want to quit because nothing worthwhile is easy. They way you show your support can be the difference between their success or failure. If deep down you’re afraid that their change will take them away from you, by being there and encouraging them through the tough times you’ll earn their appreciation, love and respect bringing you closer together. If you make every step they take that much harder you’ll drive a wedge between you which may result in the thing you fear the most.

I am very passionate about this topic because I’ve struggled with my weight my whole life and I’ve let friends and family hold me back because I listened to them when they said things that made me feel like I could never change. I’ve also cultivated a habit of not finishing what I’ve started and no one has ever held me accountable. They didn’t realize it, but what they were really saying to me was that they didn’t believe in me. We think and do based on our habits so it’s time to start paying attention and to form new ones. We need to stop being afraid to take on challenges and follow through. Sure we may fail, but then we pick ourselves up and try again and again and again. If we quit or never even start we guarantee failure, but when we keep going no matter what we will succeed!

One of my friends on facebook once described the Push Phase as the “throw up and pass out” phase. I didn’t understand why she called it that until today. I really pushed myself and I could definitely see how it could be interpreted that way…especially if you forget to breathe. All I can say is know your limits. I discovered mine today and it was great. When I got done my muscles were spent and I could barely type or hold my glass of recovery drink, but I knew I had accomplished something and it felt fantastic.

Standard Bicep Curl – 20 lbs/7 reps (same as the first time I did Week 2, more than last week)

Standard Squat – 25lbs each hand/8 reps (same)

Single-Arm Bent-Over Tricep Extension – 15lbs/7 reps (one fewer than last time, but with better form)

V-Press Biceps – 15lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme (more reps than first time and last week)

Single-Leg Squat – 25lbs each hand/8 reps + 3 extreme (heavier than first time and last week)

Overhead Tricep Extension – 25lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme (same as first time, heavier than last week)

Hammer Biceps – 20lbs/6 reps + 3 extreme (same as first time, heavier than last week)

Heel Squats – 25lbs each hand/8 reps + 3 extreme (same as first time, heavier than last week, more reps)

Push-Ups – 8 on knees + 3 extreme (same as first time, more than last week)

Fun, Fun, Fun

I didn’t walk today even though it was GORGEOUS outside. I did, however, do FIRE 45 from TurboFire. I was a little concerned that I would DIE because it’s been over 2 months since I’ve done TurboFire and it’s intense cardio, unlike walking. It was challenging (no big surprise), but I made it through. I have to say that Chalene Johnson is a genius. The way she mixed the music and sound effects makes the workout SO….MUCH….FUN!!!!! And, she knows just what to say at the right time to keep me going even though it’s a DVD and I know it’s coming.

Tomorrow I’ll be back to ChaLEAN Extreme Push Circuit 2 which I love for different reasons. There’s something about pushing yourself farther than you thought you could go and lifting heavier weights than you ever thought you could that’s so rewarding…mentally and physically. The bottom line is that if you’re going to stick with something to get results it has to be something you enjoy or you won’t keep it up long enough to reach your goal. Yes, exercise can be fun. You just have to find what works for you. If you want some help with that contact me on facebook. 🙂

I looked at the list before starting this one. One particular move caught my attention…Single-Leg Sumo Squats. I was scared. Turns out I didn’t need to be, but it is the most effective move I’ve ever done for targeting the inner thigh…WOW!

Sumo Squat – 25lbs/8 reps

Single-Arm Row – 25lbs/8 reps

Chest Fly – 17.5lbs/8 reps

Bowler Lunge (single best outer thigh/hip move) – 25lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme

Double-Arm Bent-Over Row – 25lbs/6 reps + 3 extreme

Bench Press – 25lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme

Single-Leg Sumo Squat – 20lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme

Reverse-Grip Bent-Over Row – 20lbs/6 reps + 3 extreme

Long-Arm Pullover (love this one!) – 20lbs/6 reps + 3 extreme

For those not familiar with this program, weight amounts are for each hand with the exception of the long-arm pullover. So for, say, the bench press it’s like doing 50lbs if you were at a gym on a machine or 35lbs for the chest fly. 🙂

Starting a new phase today. Didn’t quite know what to expect, but I’m in love!

Standard Bicep Curl – 20lbs/6 reps

Standard Squat – 25lbs/8 reps

Single-Arm Bent-Over Tricep Extension – 15lbs/8 reps

V-Press Biceps – 15lbs/6 reps + 3 extreme

Single Leg Squat – 20lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme

Overhead Tricep Extension – 25lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme

Hammer Biceps – 15lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme

Heel Squat – 20lbs/8 reps + 3 extreme

Push-Ups – 6 on knees + 3 extreme

Oh yeah…that’s what I’m talkin’ about!

The original purpose of starting this walking group was to get my neighbors interested in health and fitness. So far, no one from the apartment complex has shown up. I’ve had a couple of friends join me on occasion which is great, but for the most part I’m walking solo. I suppose I could’ve just given up. It’s not like I need to walk for exercise. I’ve got plenty of fun and effective fitness programs at home like Turbo Jam, TurboFire, P90X, Brazil Butt Lift, and the one I’m currently doing…ChaLEAN Extreme. But, I keep going because I know eventually someone will join me and I have tons of energy and I love being outside taking photos of the things I find interesting.

Growing up an only child (yes, I did say I have a brother, two actually and a sister…long story for another day), I learned to enjoy time alone, but like they say…no man is an island. This morning I ended up walking next to a college student on her way to class. Even though we didn’t speak, having a companion made the chilly morning feel warmer somehow. Her presence was comforting. I knew we’d eventually part ways since I’d be slowing down to take pictures so I took this one of her as she went on her way. Yep, there’s the tree.

I went on my merry way, heading left at the tree with the confused moss instead of right toward Alton Baker Park like I normally do. I was thinking about how we need friends and family to support us as we go through life. I remembered the people who have come and gone, the ones who were there for me in tough times and the ones who were there, but still made me feel alone.

A little off the subject…couldn’t decide which angle I liked better so I posted them both.

As I thought about the times I felt alone and about all the people around us who have felt the same way, like the woman I met on my last walk, I couldn’t help but remember that we are never really alone. No doubt, there are those who disagree with me. You may even be thinking, “Oh, here we go. She’s going to get all preachy on us.” But, relax. I don’t have some secret agenda where I’m slowly going to start trying to convert the masses through my blog. I’m just sharing my thoughts and experiences and my belief that God exists and cares about us is part of my experience. If God himself hasn’t felt the need to force you to believe He exists or to trust Him, then it’s certainly not my place to, either.

For me, the question of whether God exists has never actually been a question. Just as I believe the sun is there even when it’s obscured by clouds, I believe God is there even when His presence is not obvious.

I know there are plenty of people who believe God exists, but aren’t too happy with the way He’s running things. All I can say to that is that we see our lives from a different perspective and a limited view. I’m reminded of a quote that was taped on the inside of the bathroom stall door in the girls’ dorm where I went to college. “God never leads His children otherwise than they would choose to be led, if they could see the end from the beginning, and discern the glory of the purpose which they are fulfilling as co-workers with Him.” Desire of Ages

You may not agree with me and that’s fine. I’m not here to argue the point. I just know that all aspects of my life would be much worse if it wasn’t for what God has done in my life. Those who knew me back in high school can attest to the fact that I’m not the same person I used to be…and that’s a good thing. The bottom line, and I think we can all agree, is that all of our lives will be better when we can stop thinking about ourselves long enough to see the people around us who need love, compassion and companionship and do something about it.

Again, I couldn’t decide which shot I liked better so I’m posting both. I was overjoyed that the birds weren’t bothered by my presence and allowed me to take more than one.

It looked like I wasn’t going to be taking any photos of the bottom of this bridge for a while.

After I chatted with one of the workers about the new bridge for a few minutes and continued on my way, I saw a familiar sight. A man was walking toward me with all his possessions strapped to his back, his head hung low. As I approached him I tried to catch his eye, but he just stared at the ground where his next footstep would fall. I said good morning, but he didn’t respond. Not far behind him was another man, loaded down with various packs and bags, but his head was held high. I looked him in the eye and said good morning. After a split second of shock, he smiled back and said the same. Moments later I heard him ask the worker if they would be able to go under the bridge. His reason for being under there was much better than mine, but the answer was still no.

We all need love and companionship so we need to stop and ask ourselves if the bickering and drama we sometimes allow in our lives is worth it. We need to stop taking the people around us for granted.

Going back off subject for a brief moment…perhaps this is the new OPB station since they’ve announced cutting funding to public broadcasting. Not to get all political or anything.

Ok, back on track. I’ve considered renaming this category “Ramblings with Some Focus…and Photos”. Seems fitting. As I finished up my walk and passed by Autzen Stadium I couldn’t help but notice that the wind was picking up and the trash cans that stood alone were being blown over.

The ones that were in pairs seemed to be faring better.

9 “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: 10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. 11 Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? 12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.” Eccl. 4:9-12

Yeah, I just quoted the Bible, but I couldn’t have said it better myself. We need relationships, but sometimes those relationships are hard. I’ve found that when we allow God to be that third strand, those relationships transform into a source of joy, comfort and strength.

Tomorrow there may be snow so I might have to miss a day of walking. If it’s possible, I’ll go. Either way, there will be pictures. If I go, I’ll most likely be alone…or not. Just depends on how you look at it. 😉

Usually when I head out for a walk I don’t plan where I’m going or what I’m going to photograph…well, except for the tree.

But, today was different. I was on a mission. Since I had a free hand, I decided I would go back on the same path I was on the day before and pick up the bag of poop if it was still there. As I looked for it along the edge I found this instead.

Sorry, but I had to share. I was just so amused that there I was looking for poop and although it wasn’t exactly what I was looking for, I found it. Of all the times I’ve walked those trails I’ve never noticed any before. That got me thinking about a life principle brought to my attention recently through the wonderful people on my team of coaches. In life, you find what you’re looking for so you’d better look for things you want to find. Like squirrels.

Ok, maybe most of us aren’t looking for squirrels, but we all are looking for something even if we don’t realize it. Our attitudes often determine what we find in life. Positive people find positive experiences and success while negative people just can’t ever seem to catch a break. Even if we’re not exactly sure what we’re looking for, having a positive attitude and an open mind allows us to see bright spots and opportunities along the way. The more time and energy we spend focussing on what we want, or don’t want, the more likely it is that it will happen. Goals gives us direction and something to move toward. We take action so we can move closer to what we want. Eventually, we find what we’re looking for even if it doesn’t look exactly the same when we reach it. The opposite is also true. When we spend our time focussing on all the negative things that can happen we become the kind of person that negative things happen to.

For example, if a person in a relationship is constantly worried that other person will be unfaithful or leave them they begin to act distrustful and jealous, turning themselves into the kind of person their partner doesn’t want to be around. They drive the other person away, creating the very situation they’re so worried will happen. If they had believed the best and focussed on the positives in the relationship they would’ve been that much more irresistible to their partner, creating a strong, happy relationship.

Besides looking for that green bag, I had another mission. WordPress has a weekly photo challenge and the title this week is Refuge. I was looking for something that would fit, though I wasn’t exactly sure what it would be. Since I hadn’t gotten the shot by the time I reached the main part of the park I left Pre’s Trail and headed out toward the mall along the river.

Once I passed the mall I crossed over the river and headed back.

The benches on the south side of the river were donated in memory of loved ones and each carry a plaque. This one was my favorite. Obviously a woman who was looking for good things in life.

Passing by the rose garden, I thought that someone looking for thorns would certainly find them, but even in winter while the bushes lie dormant there was something amazing there.

A little farther down the path, another memorial.

Directly across the path from the war memorial, something considerably more lighthearted.

Shortly after passing the cheerful animals I came upon a figure barely moving forward along the path with their whole life on their back and their head hung so low I couldn’t tell if it was a man or woman. I don’t remember ever seeing a person so downtrodden and heavily burdened. I overtook them quickly as they seemed to be struggling to put one foot in front of the other.

As I listened to the shuffling footsteps fading away behind me it occurred to me that I should do something. As I pondered the idea I slowed down, but kept going. What could I do? I had no money or food with me. Then I knew. I could lift their burden, even if for only a few minutes. I retraced my steps until I was standing right in front of what I had finally figured out was a woman. “Excuse me.” She didn’t look up, but tilted her head to the side so she could see me. “I don’t have anything on me to help you out, but I can carry that for a while if you’d like.” The look on her face made me wonder how long it had been since anyone had actually spoken to her. She shook her head no and kept shuffling along. Maybe she was afraid I would take her stuff or maybe she was holding onto one last bit of pride. Either way, she refused my offer to help, but it was fine. Maybe the fact that someone actually noticed her was enough to lift her burden for a while.

We parted ways and I found myself wishing I had asked her name or just walked with her for a bit. But she was gone so I went back to taking pictures.

I headed home, a bit weary from the extra long walk. Did I find what I was looking for? I did. You can see the photos here. No matter what you’re looking for you will find it. Whether it’s a person who needs help, or an opportunity to learn something new, or beauty among the thorns you’ll find it. And, if it’s poop you’re looking for, well, there’s plenty of that around, too…if that’s what you want.