{Me Time} Final Report ~ Getting Mama’s Groove Back

It’s been a long road. And the road isn’t over yet.

This is me today, and me back in December.

This was a photo that I sent out with a tweet back in February (around Week 12). I felt like a MILLION dollars that day! Those are jeans I wore before Addie was born.  Let me say that again…

I FELT LIKE A MILLION DOLLARS!

It really didn’t matter what I actually looked like, or what anyone else thought. All that mattered to me was that in almost 3 years it was the first time  that I was wearing non maternity jeans, and I was ecstatic!

Now I’m not going to say there was a six pack under that shirt, or that there wasn’t a pretty decent muffin top going on, but none of that mattered to me.

What mattered is that the hard work was paying off, and I WAS WEARING REAL JEANS!!

To regroup a little with my “Getting Mama’s Groove Back” story…

Erica has been AWESOME! We started working together this past December. She helped me figure out workouts that I could do at home, made suggestions to our meal plans, taught me about cleanses, and was overall one of the best cheerleaders and motivators!  No part of losing weight, is fun, but she made it a journey worth doing.

This is where it all started…

As a reminder, I have had 3 children in 3 years.  This doesn’t make me special in any particular way, other than to explain the weight. It means that over a 3 year period, there were only 5 months that I was not pregnant. As I found myself pregnant the 2nd and 3rd time, I had only lost 1/2 of the baby weight from each previous baby.  Additionally with babies 2 and 3, I was very limited both in time, and in workouts that I was allowed to do.

All of that means that after Piper was born (baby #3) in March 2010, the person that I was looking at in the mirror was not me.

At least not the me I knew.

And that can play a mean head game with you. Very mean.

One of the best things that I did was a 3 day Ritual Cleanse. With my body thinking that my then current weight WAS MY weight, I really needed something to jump start things.  Once weight started moving, it became all about finding time for mom. This was not easy mind you. And there were mornings and days that I could not make it work.

But I found that by not going:

1. I did not lose weight those weeks.

2. Eating an extra bite with a meal mattered.

3. I felt more tired and less able to tackle life.

For me to honestly get a workout in, I need to get up for 6AM gym time. Not easy when your kids have been up all night for one reason or another. No matter how badly I feel when the alarm goes off, the feeling AFTER the hour of gym/me time is always worth it! (Shhhh, Just don’t tell Erica I said that…) I would do a morning pilates class with Erica every day of the week if I could!!

When the kids are healthy, being able to add in a few classes a week  at Studio Seaside is  a gift! The kids think of it as a play date, and it feels like a shot of B12 in my arm for a little ME time. Their Super Mom and Pilates Mat classes are my favorites!

That may be one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in trying to get My Groove Back, to really make it all work, I needed to try to remove to keep stress under control in my life and find a happy balance with Hubs.  We both really found that our heads are in SUCH better places if we get some workout time in  each week (and I’m trying not to admit to Hubs that he has been telling me this for 7 years…).

I take the mornings a few days a week, and he takes the evenings a few days a week.

We also found that taking one night off acts like a reset button and seems to make us better parents.  One night each week my parents come and do the night time routine….dinner, bath, reading, bed.  It doesn’t matter what Hubs and I do, as long as it’s none of that routine.  It gives us a chance to talk, to hear what the other is doing, share ideas for future projects…a time to be us. And that makes us just feel better as people, which to us, makes us feel better as parents to the Littles. And when you’re feeling good, it just makes you want to keep doing what’s making you feel good…a continuous good feeling circle!!

The other thing I’ll say is that as I’ve gotten older, I’m now 38, I can’t just lose weight as easily as I used to. Not to say that others are the same. Some are just gifted with that nice little ability! Not me unfortunately (darn it!).  So it took about 6 weeks of not really seeing things budge, as in BARELY AT ALL.

Yes, clothes were feeling loser, but the scale wasn’t doing very much.

Yes, it was coming off, but not a whole heck of a lot for the effort being given.

Yes, I knew it was working, but it was HARD. Couldn’t I just deal with this “tomorrow”? I’ve got a whole list of things that need attention now.

ANSWER = NO!!

Deal with it NOW!

If you do not make yourself a priority, you will never make yourself a priority!!!

Around Week 6 things started moving, the extra bite at dinner didn’t seem to affect my weight as much….the muscle was building and doing its job, helping to burn calories when I was not at the gym.  This is the time I started seeing the biggest gains, meaning lots of pounds being lost.  So if you’re feeling stuck, and you’re giving it all you’ve got, just keep going…you WILL get there!!

Could I have lost (and continue to  lose) the baby weight faster? YES.

But that would not have worked for me. There are some people that are super dedicated and have amazing will power.  If you can limit the white carbs, eat boat loads of salads and veggies and lean proteins, YES, you can shed those pounds much faster than I did. (and am doing) But that just wasn’t going to work for my brain make up, my daily schedule with the kids, my stress triggers, or my life.

I’ve chosen to go a much slower route that allows for eating cupcakes with the Littles.

I’m trying to follow an “Everything in Moderation” direction towards losing the weight.  I find that I can eat what I want, as long as it’s in moderation and as long as I’m working out.

And at the stage I’m at now, here’s what I notice about food and working out:

1. If I eat as I wish in moderation, and do not workout, I do not gain or lose weight.

2. If I eat as I wish in moderation, and workout, I lose a little weight each week.

3. If I eat all lean proteins, fruits and veggies, and do not workout, I lose a little weight each week

4. If I eat all lean proteins, fruits and veggies AND I workout, I lose a lot of weight each week.

So it’s really up to me how I want to lose the weight, just as it’s up to you to know what fits best in your life. Key is to DO IT.

Week 9 brought a few more encouraging photos…

The final photos were taken at the end of April around Week 18. This does not mean that I’ve stopped the journey, Heavens there is still MUCH to do, but I’m trying to make Lifestyle choices instead of “get rid of weight quickly and it will most likely come right back” choices.

1. I try to workout 3-4 times each week. Hubs and I alternating so that we can each get in some time.

2. The kids and I have a green smoothie each day.

3. I think about portion size.

4. I try to be strategic with meal planning…giving us healthy options that seem fun too (pizza with load of veggies in the marinara sauce).

5. Take a night off. Give yourself a reason to take a shower, dry your hair, get dressed and wear makeup. Doesn’t need to include sequins, you just need to feel good about yourself (and see that your favorite pair of jeans are in fact, feeling bigger and you’re getting smaller each week ~ that doesn’t happen in yoga pants!) Feeling cute does a WORLD of good for your psyche!

Again, this is where I started….

This is where I am at Week 18

Here are the stats “Then –> Now”:

Height: 5′ 10″
Weight: 173 –> 153
Shoulders: 44-3/4″ –> 40″
Chest: 40-3/4″ –> 38″
Waist ~ Smallest: 34″ –> 31-1/4″
Waist ~ Biggest: 42″ –> 37″
Hips: 42″ –> 40-1/4″
Thigh ~ Upper: 24-1/4″ –> 22-1/4″
Thigh ~ Mid: 19-1/4″ –> 18-1/4″
Calf: 12-3/4″ –> 10″
Arm: 11-3/4″ –> 10-1/4″

Body Fat: 31.13% –> 28%

Am I at pre-baby weight? No, still about 15 lbs to go.  But to have lost the 20 lbs. so far??? I will take that accomplishment ALL DAY LONG!  And knowing that I CAN lose it, will get me the rest of the way. And I’m pretty sure these 3 little monkeys will help keep me on my toes!

My biggest tip to you, find someone to keep you accountable (thank you Erica, from the bottom of my heart!!), and then just do it.  It’s never easy to jump in the water, but it always feels better once you’re in!


Week 9 Update ~ Getting Mama’s Groove Back

So here we are again. Time for me to completely embarrass myself and forget that not only does basically every human being I know read this blog…but also, quite a few thousand I don’t know…

Breathe, Shanna…pretend they are all standing in front of you in their underwear….

Oh wait, that’s me.

Well, not really.

But it might as well be….

(click on a photo to see the full image)

Let me start this entire update off by saying Erica is a rock star!!!  Losing the 3 years/3 pregnancies weight has not been as easy as I had hoped. I’ve definitely had my quicksand this is not going to work moment”. But throughout, Erica has maintained the most positive and encouraging attitude and outlook. And not in that “you can do it, cheerleader high kick & arm pump in the air kind of way,” but in a realistic,

“Yep, it’s tough, but you’re doing it. Look at the progress you’ve made (she then sites examples). Now what are you going to do to keep it going??

When I’m upset and near tears in a workout because I feel like I’m losing ground, she’s quick to remind me, that I’ve been working hard, my body is tired and my Littles have been sick, to go a little easier that day. The important thing is to KEEP GOING. Keep working at it.  She also did an excellent job at explaining how muscle weighs more than fat. Which most of us know, but when you’re trying to lose weight and the scale ain’t budgin’, it’s nice to have it explained again.

When I’m typing at my desk and contemplating whether I have time for a workout because the “To Do” list is just soooo long, I somehow get a tweet or text at just that moment

“Hey, @MyFavEverything, what are you doing for a workout today?”

Crap. OK the list will wait, I’m moving Momma to the top. And somehow I do manage to still get everything done, feeling better for having made time for me too.

Here’s what I like about where I’m at:

  1. There are a few less chins between my face and my neck.
  2. The muffin top is continually decreasing.
  3. My stomach doesn’t brush up against shirts making people wonder “Is she? Or isn’t she??”
  4. My chest is actually standing on it’s own again. I no longer have a uniboob/belly all in one combo!
  5. My watch and rings spin loosely.
  6. Pre pregnancy shoes are fitting again (you have no idea how happy I am about this! Now onto getting those jeans to fit….)
  7. I have a waist, albeit not a super small one, but it’s coming back!
  8. Hubs saying ~ “Woooow, there IS a muscle in your leg!”

The top row of photos is where I’m at now, the second row is where I started 9 weeks ago It’s a slow road, but a strong road. I’m so very glad to be making all of these changes because no matter what the numbers show, the scale reads, or how my clothes fit….

I FEEL better than I have in 3 years.

Onto the numbers:

Weight:
Started 173
Current 165

Waist:
Started 34″
Current 32″

Belly:
Started 42″
Current 38-1/2″

Hips:
Started 42-1/4″
Current 40-3/4″

Thigh:
Started 24-1/4″
Current 23

I’ve been asked what my weekly workouts involve. I try to squeeze in something wherever I can. Time with Erica, time at Studio Seaside, and walks with the kids. Erica came up with some AWESOME home workouts, you can check out her videos, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE (they are all totally doable!)

I find with my current daily challenges, that this works best for me:

  1. to get out of the house and squeeze a workout in with Erica before Hubs leaves in the morning
  2. to give myself some “Me Time” and the kids some playtime with a morning or afternoon at Studio Seaside
  3. to take Sunday “off” by just playing with the family ~ bike ride, walk around Balboa, playing in the backyard…

Monday – 6:00AM Reformer Pilates with Erica
Tuesday – 11:30A “Super Mom” Strength Training at Studio Seaside & walk with the kids
Wednesday – 10:30AM Pilates Mat Class at Studio Seaside
Thursday – 8:30AM Pilates Mat Class & walk with the kids
Friday – 6:00AM Reformer Pilates & 11:30A “Super Mom” Strength Training
Saturday – 8:00AM Reformer Pilates
Sunday – Some kind of family activity

I’ll talk more this week about the food I’ve been eating, and some tips that have helped me. But the biggest tip I can give, is to find someone that will keep you on task, and to think about you, your kids, and your family ~ they are all worth your health!!

Seaside Studio ~ Perfect Escape for “Me Time”

What have you done for YOU lately?? I’ve really struggled to find the “Me Time” the past few weeks, but I honestly have to say for as hard as it’s been to find the time, once I do, and once I get that workout in I feel LOADS better!

I know “they” all say this, but 6 weeks into this, I can say it really is true! I feel better, feel healthier (despite the snot party at our house), have more energy, clothes are fitting better…plus my head is in a better place too. After I finish a workout and know I’ve done something FOR ME, it just makes me want to love on my Littles that much more and go do something really fun with them!

All that being said, I need to remind you of Studio Seaside, the little Gem of a studio I stumbled upon last year. Crazy reading this post again!! I felt as though it was the post I was planning to write today! The day seemed almost the same (except that neither Hubs or Nanny were here, I was an hour off as to when the class started, panicked, loaded up all 3 Littles, was slowed down by a huge accident, and made it to the studio 5 minutes after the class started).

BUT, and this is HUGE. It was all OK. The little studio is right off Pacific Coast Hwy, easy parking. I walked through the back doors and 2 girls that didn’t know me or my kids from Adam, happily took Piper right out of my arms and gave huge smiles to the girls “Want to come play with us??” All 3 went skipping off (ok not really “skipping”, but I swear birds were singing over their heads!)

And I zipped into the Pilates Extreme Class.

The instructor Jill, all smiles, points me towards an open mat and I was officially in “Me Time”. Happiness Is!!  At first I thought “Well this is a nice stretching class..”…um….NO. My abs and booty are yelling as much to me right now, I can only imagine what they’ll be saying to me tomorrow!!

But here’s the clincher. Not only was the class awesome, the atmosphere so clean and fresh and beautiful, but the kids (mine and all the others) were all playing and having their own amazing time.  Addie and Hay would peer over the cute picket fence every now and then to check that I was still there, but then they were off to play again. And might I add, the play space was DARLING, exactly what you would love to have in your own home. Modern, Cute, Chic, Clean. PERFECT!

So here’s is why I’m telling you all this, this studio is such a wonderful escape for moms. I can’t do a big gym that will take me 30 minutes to get my kids in the door and 30 to get them out again. My rule is that if it takes me longer to get us out the door and into the gym, and back again, than the actual workout, then no thank you.

THIS gym is not that one. This is an escape in the middle of the morning, day, afternoon.  This is a little sanctuary to sweat your booty off. This is a place that makes getting “Me Time” in easy!

You can check out their classes here – Pilates Extreme, Boot Camp, Stroller Classes, Super Mom Strength……and then the Kids Classes – Mommy & Me Spanish, Intro to Ballet, Music.  I seriously think I could spend my entire day in this wonderful studio! Not only are the classes perfect, but the childcare is included for up to 2 kids! ($10 extra for a month for an additional child).

Here’s their price list. BUT….

And again a HUGE But!! Do you see on that page where it says “New Years Special = $999 unlimited access for 1 year ~ offer available through January 15th, 2011”. Guess what? They are extending this for My Favorite Everything readers!!! WHOOOHOOOO! We have until Monday, January 31st to purchase, just tell them MY FAVORITE EVERYTHING sent you! This is an AMAZING deal!! It includes ALL their outdoor classes, ALL their indoor classes, ALL the kids classes!

Perfect example ~ Friday I will be taking all the kids to the Kids Music Class at 10:30, and then they are all heading off to play while I squeeze in the Super Mom Strength class at 11:30. A little bit for everyone!!

If you are in Orange County, email them, info@studioseaside.com and let them know you want to try a free class. I promise, you wont be sorry! You’ll grab this deal the second you try it out!

Now go! Get YOU some “ME TIME”!!

(Nothing to disclose ~ I saw the deal, I loved it! They agreed to extend it, yippee!)

Getting Mama’s Groove Back ~ Week 6 Update

(Don’t I just look SOOO excited in this photo!!?  Sheesh! Truly, I hate taking these pics, but I know I need to so I try to “grin” and bear it….here’s the update at Week 6)….

First a little back story…

In college I did an Outward Bound course one semester. It was offered through my school and was one of the best experiences I have done. If you have children heading off to college, definitely consider it! Thankfully the course I chose was offered through my school. We trained for an entire semester, and then at the end of the semester we joined the Outward Bound instructors in Colorado for our week long climb.

One aspect of the training involved running on Fridays. Because everyone was at a different running level, we ran by time rather than distance…for example, we would run out 15 minutes and then back in 15 minutes.

I set out with the best intentions when I started the course.

But I HATE running. It is not my strength in any way, shape, or fashion.

So the run days were always met with great anxiety on my part.  I was always able to run “out” the designated time, but I just couldn’t make it back. I would always end up walking. With each week I would get more and more frustrated with myself.

Had I made the right decision to take this course?

Could I really handle the climb and the run back to base camp?

Maybe I just wasn’t cut out for this?

Then one week as I was doing the run out I made a pact with myself, I needed to run back IN this time.  It didn’t matter how slow I ran, but it needed to be faster than a walk. Seriously, I couldn’t feel any worse about myself doing a slow jog/run, then I already did walking back in, so what did I have to lose??!

That day changed the rest of the course for me.

When I turned to do the the run back, I did just that.

As I got more and more tired I slowed further and further down. When I was within site of the rest of the runners at the end, I was almost jogging in place I was running so slow, but I WAS RUNNING. When I crossed the finish line that day I had tears in my eyes and everyone was clapping and cheering. It was an AMAZING feeling to break through that barrier in my mind!

I tell you this because that’s what happened to me last week. When I started this challenge to lose the baby weight, I was going to lose it come Hell or high water.  After a SUPER strong first couple of weeks, I entered the “quick sand” of losing weight. Loads of stuff going on that just made it REALLY tough to succeed. I was having the same anxiety driven feeling that this wasn’t going to work.

Then last Wednesday the sun came out. Literally and mentally!

As I sat working and looking out the window. I realized I only had 2 Littles with me at that moment (baby was sleeping). I could either:

A.) continue to fold the laundry while they played outside, or

B.) go outside and play with them and simultaneously get a workout in.

A or B? Which would you choose??? I headed outside ~ duh!

Thursday brought another choice.  Addie was at daycare and I needed to pick her up in the afternoon.  Normally I would work with the kids playing near by in the playroom until I needed to leave, but Thursday was another beautiful day. I loaded everyone up  in the car parked near Addie’s daycare, and we did a great walk finishing an hour later, in time to pick up Addie.

Friday was another AWESOME workout with Erica. Those morning workouts have been such a fantastic way to start and end the week, and then kick off the weekend.

Things were clicking and starting to move again.  It occurred to me I had broken the imaginary wall again that was keeping me from feeling that I could make this work. So once again I tell you, do not give up on yourself! It is not easy, but it is SO WORTH IT!

So here is where I’m at: I’m 6 weeks into this challenge to myself.  I started at 173 lbs, and am currently 168. Although only 5 lbs lost, every part of me is changing and reshaping. Things certainly aren’t happening as fast as I would like…but I’m older (greaaaat) and I’ve been pregnant for 3 years. Things are just different. Both my husband and Erica keep reminding me, it’s not a quick change, and that muscle ways more than fat…..

Updates photos. First photos are Day 1, Follow up photos are my halfway photos:

There you have it! It’s a slow process, but it is working (thank goodness!!!) I’ll share the update measurements as soon as we take them this week.

How are you all doing??  Anyone else out there shedding lbs??  Would love to hear from you all!

Grab Em and Go Snacks

So as you know, Getting Mama’s Groove Back is my current “project” (or “thorn” in my thick side) either way, it’s my daily challenge right now.

Because I’m often on the move (helping 1 or 2 kids on the potty, running after a fast 10 month old crawler, dashing out to do 5 errands in my one free hour…) I needed to have a few “grab em in go snacks”.

Here’s a few suggestions:

  1. Snack Bars – KIND Bars, LARA Bars, & LUNA Bars (I’ve seen some or all of these at Mothers, Target, Trader Joe’s & Starbucks).  Erica recommended these to me.  All of these are yummy!  They are not packed full of sugars.  None have that cardboard “someone.please.tell.me.why.I’m.eating.this?” taste. They all have loads of flavors and choices. And I gotta say, when the sugar craving hits, the LUNA Protein Bar, Chocolate & Peanut Butter is AWESOME!
  2. “Just a Handful” of Almonds from Trader Joe’s ~ These have always been a staple for both Hubs and myself (I’ve mentioned them before). Trader Joe’s sells prepackaged Almonds that are just the right size for a snack. Throw em in your pocket, diaper bag, glove box in your car. Great pick me up!
  3. Prepackage Snack Bags ~ Erica also suggested measuring out 1/8 cups of nuts: almonds, cashews, walnuts. That way they are always ready to go and you wont be tempted to eat more than you should.
  4. Starbucks Snack Packs ~ I have always loved the Protein Snack pack that Starbucks sold. But recently I noticed they have all new snack packs in slimmer containers (great for grabbing to take in your bag). There’s a Chicken & Hummus Flatbread, Fruit, Nut & Cheese, and a Protein Plate….there is even a great kids plate! Addie and I often split it as a treat, a couple apple slices, string cheese, box of raisins, and a bag of Annie’s Organic Bunny Cookies. They are about $3.25 and a whole lot healthier than those tempting treats behind the glass!!

Hope this helps you all a little! Even if you’re not trying to kick a few lbs to the curb, these are a great healthy option to get keep you full of energy & moving through your day!

*** Shameless plug alert! Would love to have you visit BabyCenter and say “Hi!” I wrote my first of 3 posts that was published on Saturday ~ “7 Ways to Make Your Playroom More Fun”. Stop by and let me know what you think!” Thanks!! ***

Getting Mama’s Groove Back ~ Update

Why do I feel like each post lately has been a major declaration of my current state of soul searching?? Sheesh! Where is the fun in that I ask ya!?!?

Truthfully, there hasn’t been a whole lotta fun going on lately….it’s a little tough to post about the fun and exciting things we’re doing and how we’re doing them if we aren’t doing them…just sayin’…

But the point of this post is an update on Getting Mama’s Groove Back. (Just a note about the photo above, do you see how DARK it is outside?! Very, very early….)

Yep, I’m still pretty thick….still sportin’ a few chins…but my AM workout friend doesn’t AT ALL!  SO inspiring to workout with her and hope to be there too one day!

Inspiring, right!?!? Again, her not me (in case you needed reminding….)

These are about the ONLY stirrups I’m OK with these days!

Onto the update…

Please don’t go on with a drum roll, it’ll just make me that much more anxious to tell you where I’m at.  And I’m not going to list out the measurements as they have not changed that much. I will say that I’ve lost another 2 lbs (I’m currently 168 lbs) and that I didn’t gain through the holidays, nor during potty training, which really feels like a major accomplishment in and of itself!! Whoohooo!

Joking aside though, to be where I’m at does not make me happy. Since starting this weight loss venture just before the holidays I think I’ve hit my highest and lowest points…it’s been a roller coaster to say the least!  And when the low moments hit, I usually say I’m having my Goldie Hawn, sitting on the sofa, ““Overboard”” moment/day/week/month. (If you have not seen the movie, rent it and you’ll know what I mean).

A week into starting this challenge we had colds, sleepless nights, the holidays, traveling, diaper rashes from Hell, potty training, potty training, sleepless nights, potty training, sleepless nights…did I say sleepless nights???

All this to say, I’ve REALLY STRUGGLED with how to fit in the “me time” in order to work out and to eat balanced meals. Honestly, it’s been more challenging then I would have ever imagined! I recently wrote about comparing your new life to your old life when you’re trying to accomplish a task…it is aggravating!!! To make a plan and a goal in my current life, I swear I need to also be able to come up with 100 “back up what if” scenarios to be able to fit the “me time” in! I can promise you, I do not have time for THAT!

So then I take all that crazy thinking, and I get upset that I can’t get rid of the weight the way I know I can. I think about all of this as I’m helping my almost 3 year old hold up her princess skirt to go potty, while willing my 10 month old not to crawl any faster or she will have her hands in the back of the potty her sister is currently sitting on, while my almost 2 year old is hopping off the kitchen chair in the other room and running for the bathroom IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION yelling, “Poopie Mommy, poopie!!!”

Seriously? This is my current life?

My coffee and oatmeal are sitting cold on the kitchen counter, I’ve passed by them at least 10 times this morning (does that count as sprints??). At this point I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnelwhy am I trying, this just wont work….I grab the bowl of M&Ms to reward the girls for both going potty, and reward myself for barely holding onto my sanity.

Except, that’s not really a reward.

That’s just putting me further behind my goal. So that’s why I’m writing this post. Finding time for mom is HARD. Finding time to workout is HARD. Finding the energy to do everything is HARD. Trying to do all of this is NOT a Favorite Thing!

However this is what I’m trying to tell myself:

  1. If I give up, then I’m showing my children that it’s ok to give up without trying, that goals aren’t worth making.
  2. If I give up, I’m telling myself that its ok to give up on me, even though I would never in a zillion years give up on my kids, my husband, or my family
  3. If I give up, I’m telling myself I’m not worth trying just a little harder for.  My hubs and I have a silly little game, well maybe more me than him. It came about when we were still dating (as he was never really the overly emotional type)….at random times during the day in a very non serious way I would ask “Do ya love me?” And he would always answer, “I do!” in a dopey kind of way, but then he would always follow up with, “Do you love you?” In the same dopey way. I always play swat at him saying that’s not the point, the point is that I LOVE HIM!  But the truth of the matter, I need to love me too…..and loving me, means making time for me…..time for me means a healthier me, a me that can be there to love on and play with my family, which is ultimately what I want, to LOVE THEM!

I tell you all of that not to say that I know all the answers, I tell you that in case some of you are where I am. I can’t write this blog and tell you that every day is sugar and roses, because doing all that our family does, and all that your family does IS hard and it DOES take a lot out of all of us.  But I know that I can’t give up on myself, and if you are not where you want to be, YOU can’t give up on YOU either!

I’m extremelly grateful to have Erika helping me out to reach my goal. Check out Tiny Orange’s recent post on her. Seriously, I might give my first born to look as cute and amazing as Erika ~ wait who’s kidding who, she can have all 3 littles! (I kid! I kid!! Maybe…). Erika is also offering a GREAT discount to new clients, so be sure to check out the post!

And she is giving away a session on her own blog to a new seriously lucky reader…check it out here.

If you don’t live in Orange County, or even if you do, Erika has also started posting videos to help you at home, check them out Here and Here (mom’s will relate to this one hee, hee!).

And I wanted to remind you of the Ritual Cleanse 10% discount that is good for the Month of January. This really is a great way to kick start a weight loss plan in a healthy way…nothing like giving yourself 15 lbs of veggies a day for 3 days!!  And remember, I lost 3″ of prego belly during those 3 days! Promo code is “FAVeverything”.

Best of luck to you! I’m off to walk with the Littles!

Chuckling like Santa over Ritual Cleanse!

If you had told me that I would do a detox or cleanse, I would have chuckled louder than Santa Clause on Christmas Eve (with my “bowl full of jelly” post prego belly!). BUT, I’m at the mercy of the fabulous Erica from Knocked-Up Fit to help me get this baby weight off. So to start things off last week, she asked me to do a 3 day cleanse with Ritual Cleanse (Do you hear the “Ho, Ho, Ho-ing!”?!?)

Although I was game, I was also a little nervous….but a quick Google search brought up a 5 star Yelp Review.

I really couldn’t argue with that. So last Monday the 100% organic veggie & fruit drinks arrived and my blinders went up to all other food….

I wont lie and say it was easy. I had been told not to eat candy, or drink alcohol, and  to start eating more veggies a few days prior…..however the few days prior landed on Hub’s birthday weekend and we had a dinner everyday for 3 days already planned. I didn’t have more than 1 glass of wine at each dinner, and I did have dessert at each, but I would not say the weekend was an all out eating fest.

Monday started out normal….

6:00AM Pilates…

Picked up the drinks (they were delivered to the gym as part of a regular delivery)…

Drink #1 = down ~ a green drink that surprisingly tasted amazing! (as green drinks go….)

Drink #2 = down ~  a seasonal Pomegranate combination…one of my favorites and I’m sure would be good with vodka (just sayin’…..)

Drink #3 = down ~  a green drink again, but a little tougher the second time.

Drink #4 = 1/2 way down ~ a very good spicy lemonade that my husband said he would drink everyday….but this is where the day started to get fuzzy for me. I was never able to go further than 1/2 of this drink. I felt as though the most massive stomach flu and hangover had taken over my body. Nothing freaky happening other than feeling bad….but by 5:00 Hubs took over with the kids and I passed out on the sofa for an hour and a half. Definitely feeling better when I woke up, but no more detox drinks that day.

Tuesday was much better though! My head did start to hurt again around 3:00 but I was able to power through and get to #5 (another green drink) and #6 (definitely one of my favorites!!  A cashew drink that I could easily drink in place of dinner, and I’m a foodie. Honestly, if you could buy the drinks separately, I would buy this and drink it everyday for the next 12 weeks!)

(12/20/10 Update ~ Just heard from Ritual Cleanse that you CAN buy the drinks separately starting January 1, 2011!! Definitely do a full cleanse first, but yea for single drinks after!!)

And Wednesday was no problem.  I usually struggled with the #4 and #5 drinks, simply because of the volume I was drinking, but the two things that remained constant:

  1. The drinks all tasted amazing! I couldn’t get over how fresh and real they tasted. With each sip I could pick out the distinct taste of a specific ingredient.
  2. I was NEVER hungry.

Another benefit to this cleanse is being able to still workout. They offer 2 extra drinks called “Shred” and they were my third and fourth favorite drinks. Very tasty! And they allowed me to keep up a workout of sprints and Pilates during the 3 day Cleanse.

I think what I loved about doing the cleanse is the thought that I was truly “Resetting” my body to start this new healthier living and workout plan. For an honest description, it was like having a clogged bathroom drain, pouring down a jug of Liquid Plumber and having the pipes function perfectly after wards. Nothing “gross”  involved. Though I’m pretty sure I’ve drilled home what “potty” means to my 2 little girls that will start potty training the week after Christmas. Between juice drinks, water, and green tea we made the trek to the potty a few times for moms bladder!

NOW the part you all really want to know….

How much weight did I lose doing a detox and drinking nothing but juice? Everyone’s results will be different. I lost 3 lbs.

But the 3lbs weren’t really the most exciting part to me. The big news for me was that with the 3 day cleanse and working out every day, I lost 3 inches from my belly measurement!!!

Let me say that again….

3 INCHES DISAPPEARED FROM MY POST PREGO BELLY!

GONE!

AS IN NO LONGER THERE!!!

So if you ask me if I would recommend Ritual Cleanse? YES

Would I do it again? YES

Would I do 5 days next time? YES

Would I dread the green drink? YES (But let’s also remember I don’t even love salads….)

But would I look forward to the other drinks? YES

(Am I thankful not to ever worry about detoxing from drugs of any kind? A huge HECK YES!)

It’s expensive but I think the health rewards and benefits are worth it!  Ritual Cleanse is offering readers a 10% discount to get your New Year health off to a good start, and I would definitely recommend! Use promo code “FAVeverything” at checkout. The code is good until January 31, 2011.

Have a great week and drink your veggies and fruits!

Workout Update ~ I’m dying, but it’s OK.

It’s been a fun week so far (I say fun lightly here…)

Started off this past weekend with a Pilates group class that Erica taught on Saturday.  Planning to keep this class up as it’s at 8:00 on Saturday mornings which is easy for Hubs to watch the girls and for me to escape make it to.  Pilates DEFINITELY challenges every muscle you have, and I love that it helps you become and stay lean. Plus it’s a bit different than just heading to the gym.  Keeping a little variety is helpful, and joining a group class helps with the cost factor too. If you live in the OC area, would love to have you join this class with  us!

Sunday our family headed out for a bike ride. We have front mounted bike seats and seats on the backs of our bikes and often ride around the neighborhood with the girls. Sometimes we ride to the park too and all chase each other around the baseball diamond. When it comes to the weekends, I’m hoping to make my “workout” a family activity.

Monday I headed back to a 6:00AM Pilates class with Erica. MAN OH MAN was I hurting!! I seriously felt pregnant again having to roll to my side to get up. There was absolutely NO CHANCE I could have done a full sit up! Now even though I said my preference was not to get up for a 6:00AM class, I will say that it wasn’t too bad.  As Murphy’s Law would have it, my 2 year old had a nightmare around 3:30AM which made me worried I wouldn’t be able to get up…but I did, I went, I worked out….

AND I felt GOOD!

Sometimes just getting there is half the battle, but you ALWAYS feel good when you do.

Tuesday We tried our first session at my house. Erica is helping me come up with some at home workouts that I can do on my own, and share with you.  My Hubs has committed to staying home 3 days a week for an extra hour in the morning so that I can workout. And I promise you, I don’t have a glamorous gym set up. Anyone can do what I’m doing. We borrowed a treadmill from my brother-in-law, and have some free weights and bands, etc. Do you have a gym membership? A community gym? You can even replicate what we do outside if you need to. Or check Craigs List for a used Treadmill. This is the workout Erica put me through on the Treadmill today. Tough but good, and I would much rather this than an hour run!! Plus the goals are attainable.

Wednesday (in the morning) & Thursday (when the girls nap) I’ll be doing the exact same workout.

Friday & Saturday I’m headed back to Pilates (trying to get as much in before we both leave for the holidays).

But Sunday…what are you doing Sunday??  If you’re in OC, join us for a Pilates class with Erica (you wont be sorry!)!  It’s $35 with all proceeds being donated to the Tiny Oranges Team for the Pediatric Foundation Cancer Research Cinco de Mayo Run/Walk. All you need to do is email erica@coreathletica.com and let  her know you want to be there, and post the donation to her run page, that’s it!!  I’ll be there at 9:00AM and would love to see you there too!!

GREAT WORKOUT! GREAT CAUSE!

Getting Mama’s Groove Back!

Yep. That’s me.

Not the easiest photo to look at. But it’s me. I’m a real person, with a real life, that faces most of the same daily challenges you do. I have 3 darling little punks that will be 3, 2, & 1 in 3 months. I love them, but I do not love what 3 years of pregnancies left my body with.

It’s time to get Momma back into shape, FOR REAL. Piper will be a year old in March, and I REFUSE to still be carrying 3 years of baby weight past her first birthday. Besides, what mom doesn’t want to look fabulous on her child’s first birthday??  There are A LOT of photos taken that day.

I’m sure I sound absolutely selfish by saying that, but honestly, mom’s are not selfish anywhere in their lives. Our families are our first priority. We stay up late, we get up early, we may even get up all night, we use the extra dollar for the kids activities & clothes, we stretch out hair appointments, manicure? What manicure?? You name it and we do it , or give it up, because our family is our family.

But my Latte Fairy friend often reminds me, “Happy Wife, Happy Life”. Not gonna lie, you know there is truth to that. I for one am not totally happy when I’m juggling half a zillion balls in the air, but when I catch a glimpse of myself (who looks NOTHING like she did 3 years ago), my heart gets a little sadder, and my spirit starts to retreat just a little bit more. And that doesn’t do anything positive for me or my family.

I do not feel good being the person I look like now, when it’s not the person I know I am.


Last Spring I started a post series to get the body back, “Battle  of the Belly”. My intentions were good and in the first 2 weeks I had dropped 10 lbs. Both Hubs and I could see the difference. It was working! WhoooHooo!

But then reality set in.  Although the meals I was preparing were good, they were outside of my trained “know how”, meaning they weren’t as fast & easy for me to put on the table.

The workouts were great! But they involved such coordination to drop off 1 baby, while getting the other 2 in the stroller to take with me (and 1 always wanted to get out when we got there). Then to get everyone home again…..UUUUGHHH the whole process took about 3 hours and WAY more energy than I had. There was nothing left of me to give the kids when we got home. So although the weight was coming off, it was not working for our family and not making me feel any better.

So I stopped.

I still have not gained that weight back, but I have not lost anymore either.

So here I am again. And I’ve had my “Ah ha!” moment.  For this to work, these things must happen:

  1. Your family needs to be in the trenches with you. Meaning support you and be on board with the program you decide. In my case, my husband has agreed to stay home until 8:30AM, 3 days a week to give me time to workout and shower. For me to workout any earlier is difficult as at least 1 babe is going to have a tough night and I’m setting myself up for failure to get up at 6AM, if I’ve been up from 3-4:30AM. You may have a totally different situation. Figure out what works for you and devise a plan with your family.
  2. If a program is going to work for me, it has to work into the life I am living now. Not all workouts programs work for everyone. We need to come up with what works in our lives.  Is getting to the gym the best for  you? Walking on a treadmill at home? Going for a run with the kids? Having a trainer? Going to a class? Be honest with yourself (but don’t confuse this with making excuses) as to what you can really do.
  3. Make sure there is an end in site. If you told me I could workout and eat right and the weight would be gone by next Christmas, I would laugh. That would be failure for me for sure. But if you tell me to dedicate myself and truly focus and I can lose 30 pounds in 3 months, that’s doable. Heck, that’s 1 trimester from 1 pregnancy!  If you could wait 12 weeks to tell your friends and family a babe was on the way, then you know this is possible!
  4. The food doesn’t need to be fancy, it just needs to be easy and good. I’m not a huge salad fan. Wish I was, but I’m not. Don’t get me wrong, I love to eat salads, but they might not be the salads that qualify for losing weight. So a few a week is ok, but everyday for 12 weeks. Well…it would be tough.  But tell me to eat a turkey sandwich every day with an apple, that I can do. Whatever food I’m going to commit to eating needs to be easy for me to pull together and be yummy enough that I’m not feeling deprived.
  5. Don’t assume you know best, ask for help. If you have never written HTML code before, would you assume you could sit down tomorrow and do so? Nope. So what makes you think you’ll know how to lose the weight? Talk to friends that have been successful.  Do a little research. Weight Watchers? Lindora? Flat Belly? Counting Calories? Find something that will help you be successful. If you are like me, you wont stick to it unless you are seeing results, so find something that will work for you.

So what have I decided to do?

I’m going to completely embaress myself for the next 12 weeks. I’ve enlisted the help of the oh so fabulous Erica from Knocked-Up Fitness to GET RID OF THIS EXTRA STUFF!  She will be devising the workout plans, reviewing the food and offering tips and suggestions for any and all of us to follow.

And I CAN’T WAIT to share it with you all!! Today I’m starting 3 days of Ritual Cleanse…I’ll let you know what I think. Nothing like a jump start to get this party started. It’s coming HIGHLY recommended, and a quick Yelp search shows all high marks as well, so crossing fingers!

Day 1 ~ this is where we are starting ~ no secrets here, and I’ll be posting each week the results and workout plan for the week. So check back Tuesday for this week’s plan

Height: 5′ 10″
Weight: 173
Shoulders: 44 3/4:
Chest: 40 3/4″
Waist: smallest 34″
Waist: biggest 42″
Hips: 42 1/4″
Thigh: upper 24 1/4″
Thigh: mid 19 1/4″
Arm: 11 3/4″
Body Fat: 31.13% <——-WHHHHAAAAAT!?!?!??!
So looking forward to getting this baby weight gone. Would love to have you join me, or know your tips for success!

Week 1 ~ Battle of the Belly

Sooooo, how is everyone doing??  I gotta say, week 1 really wasn’t that bad!  I actually lost 5 pounds and we ate REALLY GOOD food.

What were some of your favorite things you made?

We LOVED the Avocado Orange Salad (p 100 FBFD).

The Berry Good Peanut Butter Scones (p 73 FBFD) were a GREAT breakfast staple.

Hay even made a try for it.

The Penne Pasta Salad (p 95 FBFD) was PERFECT for lunch.  It  both saved well for enjoying more than 1 day, and packed well for taking with me!  Loved the simplicity!

The kids loved the Peanut Butter Strawberry Wraps (p 83 FBFD).

At least I think they did, I’m just guessing from the expression…

What I think I’ve loved most is we have had great new recipes to try, I have never felt deprived, every meal has taken 15 minutes or less to prepare (even if it took longer to actually bake, etc, it was never longer than 15 minutes to prepare), and full of flavor!

It’s not too late to join us in the Belly Battle.  And if Flat Belly Family Diet isn’t for you. No prob!  I picked it because it sounded right for me and my family.  I gave myself last weekend to eat what I wanted (I didn’t pig out, I just didn’t restrict myself from eating what I wanted to.) And then a start date of Monday.  And once I start something my brain tends to compete with itself, so each day I’m on this diet and each day I’m losing baby weight means I’M WINNING! So my tip for you, if you want to lose a little around the middle….pick what works for you and give yourself a start date, then just got for it!

Check out the Planner this week. I’ve added some recipes for the week that we are going to be trying out. I’m only including dinner, but there are SOOOO many great things in the book for breakfast, lunch, snacks and dessert.  Great, great options!

I also loved these tips the book gives you for success (straight from page 39)…

  1. Plan ahead
  2. In 5 minutes you can assemble a couple of snack packs from the list on page 284 so eating is a no-brainer on an especially frenzied day.
  3. In 10 minutes you can map out the next day’s meals and sanks so you’re guaranteed to stick with the plan.
  4. In 60 minutes you can hit the grocery store and stock enough food for a week’s worth of delicious meals…

This all tells me that we can’t use the excuse of lack of time. If our kids or baby needed something that we didn’t have time for, we would spin our multitasking brain until we figured out how to find the time…so why can’t we do that for ourselves???

Find your 5 minutes.

You owe it to yourself!

And that great pair of jeans you used to fit it….

Or have always wanted to.

I would love to hear what things you cooked and loved, what tips helped you this week to stick with it? My favorite go to snack was always a quesadilla. It’s fast, filling, and I always had the ingredients on hand.

Try it 1 of 2 ways, all you need is 1 whole wheat tortilla, 2 oz chopped cooked chicken, 1/4 cup shredded cheese, and EITHER 1 tablespoon olive oil OR 1/4 avocado.

  1. You can either heat the oil in a non stick pan, cook the quesadilla and fold in half for a crisper version.
  2. OR zap it in the microwave for a minute, add the avocado and roll up for on the go.

I’m starting workouts this week…cross your fingers they help too…if they do, you know I’ll be sharing it with you all!!  My goal is to get 4 days of workouts in that consist of 30 minutes to an hour.  Doesn’t matter what I do, I just need to accomplish that minimum.  We can all find that kind of time.  Set your goal, and MAKE IT POSSIBLE NOT TO FAIL and you WILL succeed.

Have a great week! Looking forward to less of us all next week!