I was given the opportunity to share some of my transformation story with Drew Canole! As the founder of FitLife.tv on a mission to transform lives, Drew and his team are impacting people daily! I am proud to be a part of this movement!!
Do you ever look at these types of photos and wonder if they are real?? You compare as many details as you can to figure out if it is the same person or if it is airbrushed in some way. Well I am here to assure you that these photos are real and they are accurate!! I still can’t believe the progress that I have made in one year’s time! In one year I lost 80 pounds…yes 80 pounds!
When I look at my photos I find myself doing a double take because I just didn’t think I looked like that at the time. At that time I did not own a full length mirror and when I looked in my mirror I only saw myself from the shoulders up. I really did believe in my mind that I was thinner than I was and I had convinced myself that I was the victim of a slow metabolism. I struggled with my weight all of my life but in the last 4-5 years I really let it get out of hand and the easiest thing to do was blame it on my metabolism because of course that made the problem out of my control. It became easy to blame my weight on the fact that my metabolism wouldn’t allow me to lose weight. And I believed this with all my heart!! Now as I look in the mirror I find myself doing a double take because I can’t believe that I have managed to lose this much weight so far. When I pass windows and mirrors that I wasn’t expecting to carry my reflection I have to look hard because at times I still can’t believe it is me in that reflection!!
Your first question might be how did I do this? My first answer to you would be that I had to be ready! Yes I had to figure out in my mind that I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. When I was left with a knee injury after a slip at work and things were not improving I started to investigate what things might help me. So in early October of 2013 I purchased my first juicer and started juicing all kinds of fruit. The juices were out of this world and so delicious but my weight wasn’t going down. I thought about it and figured that something had to be wrong with this equation. I began searching the internet for information on juicing to see what I might learn. Suddenly I came across and infomercial by a gentlemen by the name of Drew Canole. He spoke all about how to juice vegetables and how you could reset your body with his plan. I was instantly hooked and I was eager to push the button and order the program! Well within the first few weeks I completed an Alpha Reset and had actually dropped 9 pounds!! I was amazed and started collecting every recipe and bit of knowledge I could find.
Time passed and I began to drop weight but still struggled with staying on track. In January of 2014 I got some news that there would be an opportunity for me to start in a small group coaching program. I was thrilled and just knew that this would be the push that I needed. I began this program in February and by the end of the month I had dropped 20 pounds! I was happy but still skeptical about keeping the weight off. As time passed I continued to drop my weight and stick to the program. By May I had lost more weight than I had ever lost before on any diet program!! My energy was increased and best part of all is that I was sleeping soundly through the night!! I began working with others going through the program and encouraging them through their transformation journeys. I found this all to be so inspiring!
Over the summer I reached a huge milestone and was able to get my weight under 200 pounds which I had not done in 20 years!! I actually cried when I stepped on the scale and was below 200 pounds…I felt fabulous!! My first time out shopping after this incident had me trying on new sizes but still in disbelief that smaller sizes would fit me. When I pulled on my first pair of jeans I purposely did not look at the size on the tag and went for the best fitting jeans. When I found that pair I then looked at the size to find that I fit into a size 12!! I couldn’t ever remember fitting into this size jean!!! The next morning I called my coach and cried tears of joy to her!! I still struggle with connecting my actual size with my body reflection however I spend time each day looking in the mirror to give my brain time to adjust.
I still continue to practice this lifestyle daily. I have eliminated dairy, sugar, gluten and soy from my diet and enjoy plenty fruits, vegetables, lean meat and healthy fats. I am not on a diet rather I have made the choice to change my lifestyle and my life is so much more fulfilling now!!!
Funny title isn’t it?? Well it is true for right now and it is part of the reason why I have been absent this last week. Yes one week ago I went into the hospital for surgery on my knee to have my meniscus repaired. Now whether you know what a meniscus is or not is really irrelevant but what the outcome was is that my knee was really quite damaged and needed a lot of repair. Now I am sure that most people would just take it in stride (yes, pun intended) but me, no I don’t take anything in stride, as a matter of fact it seems like I prefer to take the road less traveled!! This girl goes in for major knee surgery and can not tolerate any type of pain medication. Now I am not talking about just not liking the way it makes you feel, or needing to eat something before taking the medication, oh no…for me it is much worse. In my years of life every time I have had a need for some type of pain medication, within 10 minutes of the medication entering my body it is a major catastrophe…my head starts to spin and my stomach starts to churn and with out any hesitation I am spewing every bit of contents from my stomach. Now I know that sounds disgusting but it is true. So, how do you have major surgery and get by without any pain medication? Well I was given what they call a femoral nerve block. The first time I woke up in the recovery room I felt as though someone had driven a spike through my knee, just agonizing pain. I remember my anesthesiologist saying to the nurse, I think we will do the block and all I was thinking was please do something!!! My next round of consciousness had me feeling much less pain and when I reached out to touch my leg I could feel my thigh under my hand but my leg was limp and lifeless. It took me back to when I was in labor with my daughter and the doctor broke my water and I was screaming at my physician that I wanted an epidural and in the background was my mother in a saintly voice stating to me, “but you didn’t want an epidural, you said you didn’t want one.” All I remember was saying to her, ” well guess what…I want one now!!!” In my mom’s day of giving birth, epidurals did not exist, so it was very foreign to her. I remember her walking in the room after the nurses had gotten me settled in the bed and I was numb from waist down. My mom touched my feet which had been ice cold all through my pregnancy due to all the inflammation in my legs, and she said, ” your feet are nice and warm.” I looked at her and I said,”oh really, well I can’t feel them, I can’t feel anything, I am numb!” Well this sensation was quite like that except only on my right leg.
All intentions were for me to go home that same day and the nurses fed me toast and juice and wanted to get me to the bathroom so they could send me on my merry way home to my bed. That’s when things got complicated! Sitting up on the bed was not too bad and I was feeling a bit groggy which I expected but when I attempted to stand on my good leg, I was like one of those weebles you had when you were a kid and I fell right back on to the bed. After two more attempts I managed to get my bearings and I was standing upright, crutches in hand and no weight on my operative leg and thinking to myself, “I got this”. Well I was a bit more unsteady than I ever had been on crutches and felt more like I had never been on crutches before which of course was not the case. I made it about 10 feet in the direction of the bathroom and I was smiling at a little girl who was waiting to go for her surgery, she was there with her parents. My husband was in front of me and a nurse behind me, all of a sudden my numb, non-existent leg felt the need to get involved in the walk to the bathroom and I was like one of those toy soldiers that you see just toppling over. I know that there was fear in my eyes as I had no control in what was happening to my body. My husband and the other father managed to catch me before I fell and I felt like a rag doll being tossed around. Well fortunately for me the staff was quick and attentive and caught me in a wheel chair before I actually hit the floor. But I still found myself looking around to see who had all seen what had happened.
In the end me and my numb leg earned an over night stay in the hospital and two sessions of therapy the next day to make sure I was safe to go home. The “almost” fall had thrown me and scared me so much that my confidence was shaken and I had a lot of work convincing the physical therapist that I would be safe to go home. I had a new found respect for all of those patients that I had taken care of as a nurse and questioned their safety in their own home, and now I was in the same boat with them. I did actually make it home later the day after my surgery and found myself to be ever so cautious about getting around the house. You take stairs for granted and getting on and off the toilet which normally seems so simple becomes a huge undertaking when you have one leg to stand on and no bar or ledge to grab to help you stand up.
Since I have been home I have had a riser delivered for my toilet and this has made my life much easier but also it is rather amusing to be 45 years old and 5’8″ and be able to sit on the toilet and dangle your feet!! I haven’t had that since I think I was about 4 years old!! My daughter is learning patience and what it is like to care for her mom since I have always been the caretaker of everyone. But for me who has always been the caretaker not only at home but professionally, I struggle the most with having to ask for help and to rely on my family to assist me with the tasks I always did on my own. I miss being able to cook dinner for my husband and daughter or prepare their lunches. I know this is all very necessary right now and if I want to heal my body I have to follow the doctor’s orders, but I am used to being active and on the go and being a unwilling couch potato is proving quite difficult for me.
This morning as I was doing my daily workout I had a revelation which really made me start to think so I decided to bring it here and put it out to all of you for your thoughts.
As you know if you read my post from yesterday I have recently become a Beachbody Coach and of course if you don’t know this already, when you become a coach you need to be doing one of the workouts. Now mind you when I was signing up and so excited about the opportunity that was opening up to me, I looked through all the various workouts and tried to decide which one I wanted to try first. Under normal circumstances I would have gone all out and started with the workout I found to be most challenging to me like P90X, however at the present time I have a physical limitation in that I have a torn meniscus that I am about to have surgery on and so I took something that was a bit easier on my body and I opted for Hip Hop Abs.
Well during my first experience with Shaun T, who of course is quite easy on the eyes (yes you know he is and you know it makes your workout all that much more enjoyable) I found that I had to sit on a chair. I could do all of the upper body moves and keep up with the abdominal work but my legs had to refrain from the workout for now. When I completed my first workout I was dripping sweat and my abs ached and I actually felt very proud of myself even though I did the workout seated. Now maybe some of you would not consider this a proper workout or a true workout but for me it gave me opportunity to get my body moving. So rather than be a couch potato I guess I became a chair dancer? You see prior to this injury I was training for triathlons but haven’t been able to workout since I injured my knee. I was thrilled to be doing some sort of workout again!!
Okay, okay now I am sure there are those of you who think this is ridiculous but you have to say to yourself that at least I am making an effort…right?? Well I have continued with my chair dancing workouts to the very hot Shaun T. My surgery will be Monday and once I have recuperated the sky is the limit baby!! Eventually I will be taking on the P90X challenge and I will smoke it!!Thanks for coming back to visit me…wishing you happy healthy thoughts!!
Yes here I am…this is me!! Today I start on the journey of a lifetime….yes lifetime!! I know you are saying oh my gosh she is like forty-something and she is beginning on the journey of a lifetime??? Yes I am!!
All my life I feel like I have been playing catch up and feeling like if I just do it faster, better, more efficient that I will impress the right person and I will get my break. Well I finally realized that it is not about doing faster or better and I do not have to impress anyone…anyone that is except me!!
Let me add a bit of history here so that you can understand why I am saying this. All my life I have been the shy one, the one who stood back, never wanted the spotlight. I certainly was always picked last in gym class and nothing has ever come easy to me. Now not that I haven’t accomplished things in my life, I certainly have!! I have a Bachelor’s degree in nursing and I have raised a beautiful, smart, talented young lady who is my daughter and will be going off to college this fall. But none of these things came easy to me, nothing was ever handed to me and I have worked my butt off for everything I have. I have an ability to figure things out, I can read books and learn how to do things like rewiring the house or changing out the rotten pipes under the sink…yes I have actually done these things. But the one thing I can’t figure out and the one thing I struggle with today and every day is my weight. There I said it. I am overweight. I have been overweight all my life. As a child i was referred to by my mother as being “chubby” and she blamed it on the fact that I had allergies. When I was a teenager I was active, I loved to swim and I was a lifeguard and a swim instructor but I was still overweight and I was told I was “big boned”. When I was in my twenties and in nursing school after my first divorce I still struggle with my weight and then I was “stressed”. Well I am here to report that I am now in my forties and in the last 5 years I have worked out on my own and with a trainer, I have taught Jazzercise, I have trained for and run a half marathon, Warrior Dash, Dirty Girl and the Danskin Triathlon…and inspite of all of this, I am still overweight.
So I ask you what is it that keeps me overweight or as the doctor refers to it…obese. That is what I am here to find out. This is why today is a new day because today I am moving forward. I am putting all the things that bother me, irritate me and just plain piss me off behind me. This blog is my way of wiping the slate clean, starting fresh and moving forward. I plan to lay my heart and soul out on the line here to find “me”.
So how do I begin. Well I owe my new start to a wonderful gal that I met online right after the new year. Her post came up on a friend’s Facebook page and I liked what she had to say, so I started following her page: I am bringing skinny back. Let me tell you what has happened since I started following her. We have become friends and she has inspired me to look for my rainbow in my life. She encouraged me to become a health coach because I have a background in nursing and in fitness. So here I am.
I know that I can do this and I know I can get this weight off. I hope you will follow me and watch me transform. Please feel free to join me in this if you like. I will post recipes and challenges along the way and just let me know if you are trying any of them!!
I am a Fitlife Certified Coach and today is a brand new day!!
Here I sit at my makeshift desk which is actually our table and i am looking out the windows of our house at the snow melting in the backyard. The sky is cloudy and gray but at least you can see the shimmer of the sun behind the clouds. I am longing to look out my windows and see the budding trees and plants that come with spring and then such a sight catches my eye. Our neighbor who for the most part keeps to himself steps out on his deck to have a cigarette. I watch him light up his cigarette and begin taking slow drags as he also takes in the crisp late winter air. He is pacing back and forth on the deck as if pondering some thought or task. I am intrigued now and can’t seem to take my eyes off the situation, kind of like a bad movie that you just can’t stop watching, you don’t know why but you just simply can’t stop. Then suddenly he places the butt between his lips and begins to peel off his coat. Now mind you in some cases this could be nice to look at even though I am happily married, however when you are toting the proverbial Wisconsin beer belly one would most likely be tempted to look away at this point. My curiosity continues to get the best of me and I have to continue to watch this scene unfold. Mr. stout begins to walk across the deck and proceeds to pick up a snow shovel like it is a barbel and takes a stab at a pile of snow on the corner of the deck that is about 5 feet in height. He takes one shovel of snow and pushes it off the top of the pile and then places the shovel in front of him like he has done a hard day’s work and takes several drags off his cigarette. i can’t help myself and I find myself snickering a bit. I watch as he pushes up his sleeves and wipes his brow and this is after one shovel of snow!! Then he begins again and takes several more shovels full of snow and drops it off the back of the deck and pauses while placing the shovel against the remaining pile of snow. After a few steps back to survey his progress he tosses the cigarette into the snow and pulls another one out and places it to his lips and lights the cigarette up. I am sitting here stunned just watching this go on. First of all because I am a nurse and worried that this man is going to fall over from a heart attack and I can’t even run to his aid since I am nursing a knee injury but also at the fact that he feels he can’t shovel without a lit cigarette in his mouth. The task continues for about another 10 minutes and he sets the shovel against the railing and proceeds to cough and looks like he is gasping for air. I am watching thinking I may have to call 911 but gradually he makes his way to the door, puts out his cigarette and walks into the house.
I am not sure why I was so compelled to watch this event but i guess some people out there have a different idea of what an effective workout is compared to me. My usual routine includes my headphones and my favorite running shoes but clearly for others it includes a pack of cigarettes and a snow shovel!!
I wish you all a healthy and happy day!!
Yesterday I posted my first recipe and that got really good response so today I thought I would try posting my favorite green smoothie recipe for everyone to enjoy. I make these every morning and I am so addicted to them, packed with nutrition they keep you full and satisfied until lunch.
Great Green Smoothie
1 cup spinach
1 whole banana
1 scoop protein powder ( I try to find one that is low in calories and sugar and has a good amount of protein)
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. I have also added in other ingredients at times to change up the flavor a bit such as cinnamon, peanut butter, or strawberries instead of the blueberries. This smoothie comes out great and I look forward to drinking it every morning! Happy healthy eating!!