Tuesday, April 16, 2013

The Exercise Dilemma

How much exercise is enough?  That is my dilemma.  I've worked out 18 of the past 21 days.  That is amazing for me.  Today, I'm feeling yucky.  My throat hurts, I'm tired, I just want to lay down.  But I keep thinking I have to exercise when I get home.  I feel this intense need to exercise and this immense amount of guilt if I take a day off.  My entire day is taken up with this "should I, shouldn't I" argument that keeps playing in my head.  I never thought I would have this kind of problem.  I have to actually talk myself into taking a rest day...LOL  As of right now, I'm going to rest when I get home.  Who knows how many times that will change between now and then...LOL


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

90 Day Challenge Update

I have completed 15 days of my 90 day challenge.  I've worked out 13 of the 15 days.  I can't believe it.  I'm still amazed because this is so different for me. But I have to admit, I'm definitely falling in love with exercising.  Such a weird thing for me to say...LOL  I've even upped the exercise from what they have listed for the day.  For example, day 15 was supposed to be the Pump & Burn 30 minute workout.  That just isn't enough.  I don't feel like I've completely worked out.  So I changed it to the 55 minute workout and I loved every extra minute of it.  Tonight is the Combat 60.  I've never done that one so I'm excited to see if I can hang.  I'm actually looking forward to being a sweaty, exhausted mess.  Life takes some pretty weird turns, huh? 

Monday, April 8, 2013

The Five Year Old and the Dreaded F-Word (and not the one you are thinking)

My baby, Lili, came home on Friday and told me a little girl at school called her the dreaded f-word – “fat”.  My heart broke for my 5 year old daughter.  This is one of my greatest fears come true…that my daughter (or son) will have to go through what I went through as an overweight child/teenager.  The isolation, the loneliness, being “different” from everyone else.
Don’t get me wrong.  I had plenty of friends in school and no one ever really called me fat…unless I was fighting with them and then my response was always “That’s the best you got?”  The fact that I was fat was pretty obvious but no one picked on me or made fun of me.  I didn’t experience any bullying in that regard.  The extra weight I carried served one purpose and that was to isolate me.  It kept the world at a distance and me from being a bigger part of that world.  I didn’t have a single boyfriend in high school.  The only time a boy called my house was to talk to my best friend (who of course was very, very, tiny).  I was never asked out for anything.  No homecoming dances, no movies, etc.   I missed both my junior and senior proms.  While other girls were breaking up and making up with their boyfriends fully entrenched in the drama of young love, I sat home alone.  I felt isolated, lonely and very much like a freak.  A freak that had to pretend it didn’t bother her.  Who had to pretend it didn’t hurt. One who still bears the scars of those lonely years.  Lots of people say that their high school years were the best years of their lives.  Mine were not and I wouldn’t go back for anything. 
I definitely don’t want my children to experience the same loneliness I did.   It’s something I’ve worried about since the day they were born because let’s face it; my kids did not win the genetic lottery when it comes to being obese.  Both my hubby and I have struggled with our weight our whole lives. I don’t want them to have to deal with the obstacles that obesity puts your path.  I want what all parents want:  healthy, happy well-adjusted children. 
This has reinforced the path that I am on and strengthened my resolve.  This journey isn’t just about me.  It’s about my family, my children and the example I’m setting for them.  They don’t have to follow my old path and end up spending their teenage years a lonely freak.  They can follow my new path, the one I’m on now.  I have to keep exercising and making good choices so I can show my children the right way.  Show them it’s not a big deal to stay healthy, that it is fun, enjoyable and doable.  That it is the normal way to live.    
You may be wondering what I said to my daughter after she told me she was called fat.  I hugged her close and told her the truth.  That she is a beautiful, smart, funny, talented girl and that she shouldn’t listen to anyone who says any differently.  That some people are just mean and it’s best to ignore them and concentrate on what you know to be true.  Then I took her to Walmart and we bought a new game for the Wii…Nickelodeon’s Dance 2.  A fun way for her to stay active, move around more and to help her on her own path to a healthy lifestyle. 

Sunday, March 31, 2013

234 Freaking Kicks!!

234 freaking kicks in a row!! That is what I did today during my Combat 30 workout routine. 117 kicks on each leg.  And how do I know that?  Because the instructor, Dan, says that at the beginning of the 5 minute segment.  Yes, that was only during 5 minutes of the workout.  I'm not sure if he is trying to scare me off or what...LOL  When you think about it, it sounds insane.  At least to me it does.  But after the workout?  When I'm all sweaty and breathing heavy?  All I can think is "Damn I did it!" and I'm so in awe of myself because this is such a different me.  The old me would have turned the DVD off after the first 5 minutes.  Okay, let's be honest...the old me never would have even turned it on the first place...LOL  

I've worked out 6 straight days during the first week of my 90 day challenge.  I'm so grateful that tomorrow is day 7 and I get to rest...finally.  Especially because my babies are coming back from Arizona and I can spend the time with them instead of exercising.  But never fear, the old me is not coming back.  The new me will be back on Tuesday, Week 2 Day 1, to get right back on track.  

Saturday, March 30, 2013

102 lbs gone!!

Today I did something I didn't think was possible. I broke the 100 lb mark. I'm so excited. I have officially lost 102 lbs!! To me this is absolutely amazing and unbelievable. I never though I would get here. It seemed like such a long road. But I'm actually doing it. Making the changes necessary to change my life and to get healthy. Only 67 lbs to go to reach my goal. I can't wait to get there!!


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

90 Day Challenge

I have now completed 2 30-day challenges .  I set up those challenges on Facebook so that I could keep myself accountable.  Yes, I have to actually challenge myself in a public forum to get my butt off the couch.  My brain is a very scary place...LOL But it actually worked and this is probably the longest I have ever continuously worked out in my life!  

I've decided to challenge myself and start a 90 day Les Mills Pump and Les Mills Combat hybrid workout. I found a great schedule online that I'm going to follow. It alternates Pump and Combat with one day off a week.  By the time I'm done, I will have exercised 78 days out of 90.  That will be a huge accomplishment for me.  I'm also curious to see how many inches and pounds I can get off during those 90 days. 

Wish me luck!!  One Fat Chick is on the road to being One Strong Chick!


Thank God for Les Mills!

You may be wondering who in the hell is Les Mills? Is One Fat Chick cheating on her hubby? Is he her new guru? Has she joined a cult?  The answer to all of those is No.  Les Mills is a New Zealand athlete who competed in the Olympics decades ago.  And why am I thanking God for him?  Well, because his sons started the Les Mills exercise programs.  These programs, more specifically Pump and Combat, have done the impossible.  They have turned yours truly, a charter member of the I Hate Exercise club into an exercise fanatic.  Yep, I said it.  I love to workout.  I love to get sweaty.  I look forward to it and can't wait to do it.  The same girl who was a certified couch potato now exercises 6-7 days a week.  You read that right.  6-7 times a week. 

Let me explain how I fell in love with these programs.  Before I had surgery, I was going to the gym.  Trying to get myself to like exercising.  A feat I always thought was impossible.  I never did group classes (other than Water Aerobics) because I was embarrassed to be in group classes with all those fit people.  But one day, I put on my big girl panties and decided to try the Les Mills BodyPump class at the gym.  I talked a friend into going with me and attended the class after work.  I was embarrassed exactly as I thought I would be but I forced myself to walk into the room.  I had no idea what I was doing but one of the ladies was nice enough to help out the newbie and get me set up with some equipment.  A bench, a barbell and weight plates are needed for this class.  It is 55 minutes of weightlifting to music.  Squats, lunges, clean and press, chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps, etc.  You name it they work it out.  I had no idea what I was getting myself into.  I was easily twice as big (if not three times) as the rest of the women in the class.  Part of me wanted to leave but I forced myself to stay.  About 50 minutes into the class I had to leave and throw up.  I had never exercised that hard in my life.  The amazing part was that after I threw up, I walked back into the finish the class.  Me!!  Someone who would usually take any excuse not to exercise voluntarily walked back in after working out so hard I vomited!!  Color me surprised...LOL  But you know what?  I had the best time (minus the throwing up of course)!!  It was hard, I was tired and a sweaty mess but I discovered that I loved lifting weights.  It made me feel strong.  

I took the classes for a few weeks after that up until I had surgery.  After surgery, I was tired all the time and couldn't make myself start working out again.  For the first 5 months after surgery, I did nothing.  I also had to cancel my membership because I couldn't afford it anymore.  So there went the one exercise I actually found that I liked.  

One day, I realized that I really had to start exercising.  I am terrified of having all that loose skin and I've heard that working out is the best way to combat that.  I also wanted to show my children by example that exercise is an important and fun part of life.  I decided to focus on what I liked to do.  I don't like to walk.  It's boring and pointless.  I know they say it is the best thing to do but I can't stand it.  If I was going to actually work out and keep doing it, it would have to be something I liked. Since I no longer had a gym membership, I started small by using my Wii Fit.  That was fun and something the kids and I could do together.  But it quickly became not enough.  I found out that Les Mills actually had a program to use at home.  It is called Les Mills Pump and is the home version of the class I loved at the gym.  I had to have it.  It came with all the equipment necessary and 10 DVDs.  I started working out with it as soon as I received.  It was just as fun as I remembered and it made me feel so strong.  

Then Les Mills released a home version of their BodyCombat program as well.  It is a workout that uses moves from multiple martial arts disciplines as well as boxing.  It is fun, a great workout and I get to punch and kick.  What a great stress reliever!!  

It's amazing to me that I've been doing this for 60 days now.  Working out 6-7 days a week and enjoying it. The inches are melting off and I'm getting muscles I didn't even know I had.  Did you know that there are actual muscles on your shoulders?...LOL  My surgeon is thrilled that I'm working out so much and it's definitely showing.  I finally figured out the key to get my butt moving.  It had to be something I really enjoyed and I found it.  So, yes, thank God for Les Mills.  He is the reason I am finally getting into shape, setting a great example for my kids and actually leaving the couch. 

Now what do you enjoy doing?


Tuesday, March 26, 2013


Well, it's been over a year since I've posted and a lot has changed since then. During 2011 I dropped about 40 some odd pounds and was down to 299. I went up and down a few lbs after that but could not get below 299. No matter what I did including dieting and exercising, I couldn't get past that number. And like every other time I've failed to lose weight, I said "Screw it" and ate whatever I wanted again. It was disheartening and frustrating. By March 2012, I had gained back all of the weight I had lost except for 8 lbs. I was devastated and so very tired of the Weight Loss Roller Coaster I had spent my life riding. The ups and downs. The twists and turns. So over it!! Not to mention, I was getting older and it was getting harder to get the weight off each year. And to top it off, my children were starting to put on weight. I know I shouldn't worry about it yet because they are so young (5 & 7) but I am terrified they will have to go through what I went through as an overweight teenager. The loneliness, feeling like an outsider all the time, being different. It's a hard road and I don't want that for my babies. But how could I tell them how to eat or to get active if I wasn't doing it? I didn't want them to end up being obese like me. Not my babies.

I finally made the decision to pursue weight loss surgery again. And I was on a mission. It wasn't just for my health but for my babies. I wanted to be a good role model for them. I made the appointment to see my doctor in March of 2012 and was taking the 3 month Options class that Kaiser requires by April. I wasn't playing around this time. I knew this was what I wanted and it showed. Instead of being bored in the classes and resenting even having to be there, I was eager for them. I enjoyed them. I wanted to learn what I needed to do to change my behavior. The class prepares you for the surgery. It is taught by nutritionists, nurses, and they even have former patients come in to discuss how the surgery has changed their lives. They discussed the different options, how to prepare for them and the life changes you have to make after surgery. It was an incredibly informative class.

I will admit I wasn't the best student in the class and had only lost 6 lbs by the end. Not very encouraging but I knew I could do this. I decided on the gastric sleeve for a variety of reasons most importantly being that it was less intrusive and if needed I would be able to have my stomach scoped later on in life. That was a huge factor for me. Plus, the idea of having my intestines re-routed in the RNY (gastric bypass) surgery freaked me out. I didn't hesitate after the class and had my surgery a month after it ended on August 16, 2012.

Your life is completely different after surgery. I have to concentrate on eating protein and I can only eat about 3/4 of a cup of food at a time. Seems so small, right? But I'm 7 months out now and it feels like a huge amount of food in my stomach. The pain of being full is a big deterrent for overeating. Overall, I can eat what I want. I tend to avoid pasta, rice and breads just because of the carbs and the fact that I need more protein than normal. 100-110 grams of protein a day. It takes up most of the calories I'm allowed. There are a few things that I can't eat. My stomach just can't handle them anymore. Lettuce is a killer. I found that out at Disneyland. Not the best place to try incorporating new foods back into my diet. Learned that the hard way when I had to spend 2 hours laying down in the hotel while everyone was at Disneyland. But I've found a way around that. I order salads without lettuce. Yes, I get strange looks but it works..LOL I also order sandwiches without the bread.

Overall, I am down 99 lbs. Yep, 1 lb away from a 100. I'm wearing a size 18/20 as compared to being too big to fit in my 28s. I've lost a total of 57 inches off of my body. I feel so much better than I did before. I'm able to do so many more things than I could before. Some of my biggest accomplishments include:

  • Being able to ride on the rides at Disneyland with my children. The first time I've been able to do that ever!! I am not ashamed to say I cried on Dumbo...LOL And so did my mom when she saw me. 

  • Getting up off the floor unassisted - sounds silly but when you can't do it for years and finally can, trust me the tears of joy start. 

  • Riding my bike and finally not feeling like I'm going to fall if I go too slow. 

  • Being able to play with my kids physically. To run and walk to the park. To enjoy the time with them.

  • Wearing heels again all day at work. I've missed that so much!

  • Riding on an airplane for the first time in over 7 years and being able to fit in the seat without an extender for the seat belt. I was so nervous on the way to the airport and the relief when I realized I fit was incredible.

So many more changes have happened since I made the decision to change my life. I know that the common misconception is that having surgery is the easy way out. I felt that way myself which is why it was so hard for me to make the decision to have it. But it's not true. I still have to work hard to lose weight. I have to watch what I eat and work out. Yes, I said work out. The Queen of I hate working out is now a fanatic but more about that in another post..LOL It's not always easy. The pain if I overeat or eat something I can't digest is unbearable. I had to give up all carbonation and some days I'd kill for a Diet Pepsi or a Lime-A-Rita or a freaking class of champagne. But I can't have any of that. The bubbles HURT!!

I've had to find new ways to eat and this journey has definitely had some bumps. I've taken a hard look at my relationship with food. I can't eat when I'm angry or stressed or upset. I've had to learn to grieve for the loss of a loved one in a different way. Can't eat the grief away anymore. It's been a challenge but you know what? Knowing everything I know, I'd make the same decision all over again. I'm (believe it or not) actually happy. And after a lifetime of being obese and depressed it's a nice change.

Here is a before and after picture. The one of the right is December 2009 and the one on the left is December 2012.



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