Friday, August 09, 2013

Sponsored Post: GoodNites Underwear Undercover Mission

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of GoodNites. All opinions are 100% mine.

My kids are 3 and 5, and we have been a diaper free family for about a year. Both of my kids were potty-trained pretty painlessly when they were about 2 1/2, and it has been so freeing to not worry about changing diapers. At night though, they need a little extra help sometimes.  My five year old has a lot of trouble falling alseep at night, and like to drink water when she's trying to sleep.  Sometimes, she sleeps so deeply after her being up late that she doesn't wake up to go to the bathroom. We're in the process of taking away her water in bed and trying to get her to get up on her own, but for now, we need a little help to keep her dry at night.  My 3 year old still uses diapers at night to stay dry.

So, when GoodNites offered us a chance to take the GoodNites Underwear Undercover Mission, we were excited to try out the GoodNites underwear (which are basically thin, discreet diapers that you can pull on like underwear).

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My kids both tried out the GoodNites underwear for a couple of weeks, and they were awesome.  They look just like underwear and you can't see them under pajamas, which is a huge plus if your child is a little shy or embarrassed that they need a little help staying dry at night. My daughter had a sleepover with her cousin while wearing these, and she was happy that you couldn't see them.

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We loved the GoodNites underwear and I think they are perfect for older kids.  They worked great, no leaks, and my kids felt secure and confident wearing them. We are really fans and I would reccomend them to anyone.  If you're going through bed-wetting with your kids, GoodNites has a facebook page where you can connect with other parents, engage in coversation and get some advice. You can also sign up for the Undercover Mission for a chance to win weekly prices.  Sign up through their GoodNites Facebook page or on their website: GoodNites

 

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Friday, August 02, 2013

My Weight Loss Journey- Week 19

Highest Weight: 250 (2010)
Starting Weight: 238 (03/20/13)
Weight Last Week: 198
Current Weight: 196.8

Liam and I making funny faces together at the Playground by the track I run on.

Well, I think the training for my 1/2 marathon is paying off because I am still losing weight quickly, and trust me, this has been a really bad week of eating.  Like really bad.  

I have been so incredibly stressed and anxious this week, as school is approaching for all of us.  Mark and I are both taking a full load of courses at Chico State, Magdalena is starting  kindergarten, and Liam is starting his first year of preschool.  I am excited that this will be my first semester at a big girl university instead of the (admittedly awesome) community college I have attended for the past 2 years. I'm excited, but also ready to just get my feel for the campus and get comfortable in the art department.

I have unfortunately been making stupid choices with my food this week, and although I haven't gone too overboard calorie-wise, nutritionally my eating hit rock bottom this week and I do not feel great. I seriously feel tired and bloated and full of regret for buying those Doritos and that pizza and that snickers bar and...I'll stop there. I'm all about having yummy treats on a daily basis- but it was kind of all I have been eating. I need to get control of my emotions, make a meal plan for the next couple of weeks and refocus. 

My running is going really well, generally. I did take yesterday off when I shouldn't have, but we were out and about until almost bedtime and I didn't fit it in. It's not a huge deal, but even two days without exercise makes me feel like something is missing...especially when I'm eating more than usual and not making the right choices.

But, generally, I am seeing huge improvements in my endurance levels and even my speed.  I'm up to running 3 miles before needing to stop to walk for a while, and the distance of my long runs are increasing almost every week. Sunday morning, I'll be doing a six-mile run and is totally insane that I'm mostly excited?!

Okay, I pinky-swear I'll get some more before/after pictures pictures up soon! 


Thursday, July 25, 2013

My Weight Loss Journey- Week 18 (a little over 4 months in!)

Highest Weight: 250
Starting Weight: 238 (03/20/13)
Weight  6/27/13: 206
Current Weight: 198

I didn't mean to take a month off from blogging, but stuff happens.  Like summer school.  I just finished a summer school class in Statistics, and we were also busy with family from out of town and friends on the weekends. Also, our sweet kitty, Chiyo, passed away unexpectedly on July 5th and that kind of turned my life upside for a week.

I'm back now, and I'm going to try to fill you in on what's been happening and how my weight loss is going.

 Well, if you did the math you already know that I have lost 40 pounds in the last four months!

I also ran in my first 5K on July 4th and I was really pleased with myself.  I ran it in 38:30, which means each mile was a little over 12 minutes. Considering I ran my first mile in March at a time of 15:30, I am so happy with where I am now.


I loved racing and I immediately knew I wanted to do more.  Like lots more.  Like a 1/2 marathon, to be exact.  So, I chose one long enough away to have time to train for, but not far enough away to allow for me to slack off.  So, I'm running a local 1/2 marathon the first week of November and I'm already in week 2 of training for that. I have a long run of 5 miles this Saturday, which I am nervous and excited for. I've done 6 miles once, and it was hard.  But, I'm ready to keep pushing myself!

I don't have any fancy before/after pictures for you today. I think I'm kind of waiting for a day where I actually wear makeup and get dressed, but that hasn't happened for a while. I need a date night or a girl's night soon!

I'm happy with my progress so far, and I love feeling more in shape, but I don't feel like a different person, really.  I'm still wearing all of my same clothes, although they definitely fit differently.  I'm thinking I'll buy some new clothes after 10 more pounds lost, which will put at 50 pounds lost.

I'm starting my first semester at Chico State next month, and I am so excited to finally be transferring from my community college and continuing my work towards my Fine Arts degree.  I'm really excited that I'll be starting a new school looking good and feeling more confident and in shape.

I know I always say this, but I do really want to start blogging regularly again and keeping you all updated on my journey.  I would like to say that things are calming down for me and I think I'll have more time, but that is only temporary before schools starts. If you want to know what I'm up to on a more regular basis, follow me on Instagram at Thatkindofmom

If you're on Myfitnesspal, let's be friends and motivate each other! My user name is thatkindofmom

Thursday, June 27, 2013

My Weight Loss Journey- Week 14

Highest Weight: 250
Starting Weight: 238 (03/20/13)
Weight Two Weeks Ago: 211
Current Weight: 206

I took last week off from updating after having an incredibly busy (but fun!) week of camping, hosting a friend from out of town and her kids for 2 nights and my first exam in my summer school Statistics class. Phew! It wiped me out, even though it was a great week.

Today, I weighed myself and yes, I weigh 206 pounds!  I have lost 32 pounds since March, and 44 pounds since my highest weight, about 3 years ago. It feels AMAZING to know that I'm approaching the 100's. It has been such a huge goal of mine and I am so close. I'm sure I can lose the six pounds in the next month or so, but I never know when I'm going to stall for a while.

I thought this would be a good time to time to talk about what I'm actually doing on a daily basis, and break it down a little more. Of course, I'm a not doctor, and you should definitely talk to your doctor if you have questions about weight loss. I have learned this information through my own research and experience, and I'm SO not a professional in any regard.

What have I learned and how do I apply it in my daily life?

Brace yourself, I made something that is actually very simple seem really complicated. Just hear me out, 'cause this is good stuff. I promise.

I used to think I had to eat breakfast, and I would have to eat 6 small meals a day.  I thought I was screwing up my metabolism and any chance of losing weight if I didn't.  It was honestly the aspect of weight loss that intimidated me the most. I hate breakfast generally, and don't really feel like eating until well after noon.  I also pretty much hate snacking, and anything less than a full meal just leaves me wanting more.  

I have learned that meal timing, in terms of weight loss, does not matter.  I'm serious. The only thing that matters, in terms of weight loss is creating a calorie deficit over time.  Over time could be taken as 24 hours, 1 week, a month, etc.

It might shock you to know that I have lost 32 pounds basically eating at night. I eat  until right before I go to sleep.  I don't like to eat during the day, but I love eating later.  I stay up late, and eating at night makes me happy.  Sometimes I have lunch, but not usually. 

 I am basically doing something called intermittent fasting, which means I fast for 18 hours every day and have an eating window of 6 hours, generally 6 pm- midnight for me. I eat an entire day's worth of calories in this window, which ranges anywhere from 1200 to 2000 calories for me, depending on my activity level and plans for the day.  I usually have one huge meal around 700 calories, then 2 or 3 large snacks after that.

I love intermittent fasting and I do credit my weight loss to it, but I don't think anyone has to do this to see the results I see.  Intermittent fasting has allowed me to take control of my eating in a way that makes me happiest. I love big meals at night, and I have no problem going through my day without a meal.  I drink a lot of water throughout the day and usually a cup or two of coffee in the morning. You can learn more about the benefits of intermittent fasting here.

Does that sound absolutely horrible to you?  Cool, because you don't need to eat like that.  Do you wake up ravenous, need breakfast, and need to eat a little something throughout the day? Awesome, because there's no reason you won't lose the same way I do. It's all about calories out vs. calories in, over time.

I make sure to always burn more calories then I consume.  This does not mean I exercise away every calorie I eat. Your body is constantly burning calories, just running the machine that's keeping you alive and moving. I calculated my Basal Metabolic Rate, which basically tells you how many calories you burn on a non-active, sitting around day, using this calculator. This website also allows you to put in your level of activity, and will give you an approximation of how many calories you burn on a daily or weekly basis. It will also create a deficit for you, and tell you exactly how many calories to eat to create the deficit, which will result in weight loss.

Sorry, that got kind of complicated.

I use a Fitbit to keep a track of my steps and any other workouts, and it gives me a running total of how many calories I have burned today, through just being alive and any activity on top of that. My Fitbit has been the most useful tool for me in my weight loss, besides using the free website/app My Fitness Pal to track my calories. The Fitbit automatically sends my activity level & calories burned to My Fitness Pal, so I always know how many calories to eat in order to keep my deficit.

When I mention calorie counting, a lot of people get really turned off. I understand.  I used to think it was...."a bit much." I thought counting calories would take any enjoyment out of food and it would turn me into an obsessed, unhappy person who spent way too much time thinking about food.

Actually, I love counting my calories now.  I have a food scale, which was around $20 and is super easy to use. I weigh pretty much everything I eat, so I really know what I'm eating. The weighing probably adds a minute to my meal preparation.  My Fitness Pal has an awesome database of foods, and I rarely (like never!) can't find what I'm looking for. There's also a built in barcode scanner in the mobile app that automatically enters in the nutritional information, which is super handy.

Yes, it gets difficult when I go out to eat to a non-chain restaurant.  I do my best to break down the meals, and I am getting really good at estimating portion sizes after 3 months of doing this. But, I really don't eat out very often, so the fun of having a meal at a restaurant definitely outweighs the difficulty of logging it. I don't worry too much about situations like this, because it is just one meal, and that will no impact on my long term weight loss.

You might be wondering why I haven't said something like, "I only eat carbs with protein" or "You have to eliminate all processed food!"  I haven't said it because it's simply not true.  I eat everything that I want.  I'm serious. I just don't eat all of everything I want all the time.

I keep track of my calories, carbs, protein, fat, fiber and sodium. That being said, every day I strive to eat a diet that is:

-At my calorie goal (which changes depending on my workout)

-Meeting or exceeding my protein and fats (fats don't make you fat, yo!)

-Around my carb goal, meeting my fiber goal and at or under my sodium goal

-Full of as many fresh, whole foods as possible

-Full of foods that make me happy and feel emotionally satisfied

I eat ice cream almost every day. And cereal. I eat candy a few times a week, and will have fast food once or twice a week. I eat my favorite Chinese takeout meal at least once every 2 weeks, usually more like once a week. I drink alcohol when I want to (although it is very rare these days) and I don't ever, ever feel like like I have "just messed everything up" by falling off of some restrictive, useless diet plan.

 I just make sure that my day, overall, lines up with the goals listed above.  My portion sizes have changed dramatically, but that's just the reality of the matter.  I eat 1 or 2 pieces of pizza at the most, and then eat a huge salad or veggies to go with it.  I'll have a measured cup of light ice cream (200 calories) and then add strawberries. I pay attention to my food, what the serving size is, and how it will make me feel. I stopped drinking juice or soda because the high amount of empty calories wasn't worth it to me. If I LOVED soda or juice, I know I would find a way to fit some in on a regular basis.

 I eat a lot of vegetables, yogurt, lean meat, fresh fruit and milk daily. I add in carbs through rice, corn tortillas or bread with almost every meal.

Personally, I eat a ton of stir-frys with rice (brown or white, depending on what we feel like).  I eat a cup of rice with a huge amount of veggies and lean meat.  I also make a lot of crock pot meals with chicken breast and veggies stewed, and then we eat it with corn tortillas and beans. This week, I made a huge pot of chili with 97% lean ground beef, pinto beans, stewed tomatoes, celery, onion, green peppers, chili pepper, cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper. I ate that for dinner with a big salad and a corn tortilla for three days.

Next week, I'll talk more about my workouts. But, a well-balanced diet that creates a calorie deficient AND is sustainable for a lifetime is the most important thing about weight loss and maintenance. Don't starve yourself, don't deny yourself any food group or item and eat in moderation. Keep track of what's going into your body.  Add exercise to this, and you are well on your way to maintaining a healthy weight for a lifetime.  You need to find a lifestyle that creates that magic calorie deficit and allows you to be emotionally happy and fulfilled. 

And do your own research! Visit forums, find blogs from people who are living a healthy lifestyle that appeals to you and seems sustainable for a lifetime, read good information (like medical journals, not fitness magazines) and figure out the truth about weight loss



Thursday, June 13, 2013

My Weight Loss Journey- Week 12

Highest Weight: 250
Starting Weight: 238 (03/20/13)
Weight Last Week: 213.5
Current Weight: 211

Yep, I lost 2 1/2 pounds this week!  That means not only have I reached a milestone of 25 pounds gone, but I surpassed it and have lost a total of 27 pounds! I am more than a quarter of my way to my goal, which is so motivating.

My BMI has dropped from 41.2 to 36.2.  I'm still medically obese, and will only enter the "overweight" category when I reach about 172 pounds.  My ultimate goal is to no longer be considered overweight, which for my height, will happen when I get to 140 pounds. It seemed so daunting and basically impossible when I started 3 months ago, but I have no doubt that I will keeping going until I'm healthy.

I'm still running a lot and loving it more and more.  It's hard and I hate it, but I love it. I seriously get butterflies in my stomach every time before I run because I know how hard it is going to be, and how much I'll want to stop.  The beginning is the worst and I spend the first mile always fighting the voice that is like, "This suuuuucks!" After the first mile, I am warmed up and mentally in the game. I ran four miles last night, which was difficult but I felt amazing when I got home.

I love running because it is something I could never do. I hated it, it hurt, I was slow and I couldn't run for long without needing to stop. I started to run not because I thought it would be fun or because I liked it all, I started to run because I wanted to prove to myself that I could be whoever I wanted to be. I wanted to conquer one of my biggest fears and embarrassments and to know that I was capable of big change.

Running has changed the way I look at myself. I'm a runner. I'm a slow, still-fat* runner, but I'm a runner. I get compliments yelled to me almost every time I go for a run.  Last night, I was running at an elementary school track, and two teachers were standing outside, chatting during my entire 45 minute run.  When I started to head home and ran past them (still running,of course) one of the ladies said, "You are a rockstar!! Seriously, that is so awesome. You go, girl!"

Sometimes, the comments startle me or even maybe annoy me sometimes, but this one just made me so happy. I love when people are so surprised that I run and run for a pretty long time. It's reminds me that I'm doing something a lot of people don't choose to do, and I'm doing it with about 70 pounds of excess weight.  I can't even imagine how nice it will be to run when I'm not carrying around this weight! 

I'm slow. I can run a mile straight through, and I can do it in about 11:45 seconds if I push myself. If I run longer, like the 4 miles I did yesterday, my pace goes to about 13:30 a mile, which includes intervals of walking after I complete mile 1 and mile 2. I am hoping to get my 5K race pace under 39 minutes, which I think is realistic considering it is three weeks away.

*Fat.  Let's talk about that word. I hate that word, and I love that word.  

I have always identified with the word. I'm not curvy, I'm not big, I'm not just chubby...I've got a lot of extra fat and I'm fat. I was afraid of the word my whole life and I was always, ALWAYS afraid that someone would call me that.  And they did. 

Then, I decided that I didn't care. To me, it's not a big deal to call myself fat. I am. That doesn't mean I hate myself or my body.  It means that I have accepted my body for what it is and taken the power away from the word. I took the seemingly endless power away from the scale when I stopped acting like my weight is this big secret that could never be revealed. 

To me, calling myself fat does not mean I'm not beautiful.  One three letter word doesn't compete with the other words I use to describe myself- determined, committed, happy, beautiful, athletic, even sexy.  I understand others might disagree, but fat, for me, represents truth and acceptance and a chance to really look at when my choices are doing to my body.

Well, time for this fat runner to get going! I have a super busy week ahead of me, starting tomorrow. We're going camping (childless!) for the weekend with a group of our good friends. When we return home, one of my best friends (for the last 20+ years!) and her kids will be staying with us for three nights.   I am so excited!

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