Thursday, March 31, 2011

DAY 11 (19 to go) AKA enough is enough.....or is it?

Today was a tough day, I am not going to lie.  It was the first day where I just kind of had enough being on a restricted diet....

it started with breakfast - I decided to have some vegetable stew that I made...and I made a HUGE pot of it thinking I could freeze it and have it as a back up - it had zucchini, summer squash, green beans, onions, carrots, corn, tomatoes and ground beef.  Normally I would have added Parmesan cheese but since Paleo is dairy free I decided to throw in some bouillon cubes to give it a little flavor.

I brought a big bowl of it to work - today I had a big deadline so I knew there was not going to be anytime to prepare food and snack.  I got about halfway through the bowl and started feeling the same sickness I used to feel pretty much every time I eat.  I won't go into details but lets just say the whole ordeal wasn't pretty.  I knew it was food related so I wrote down all the ingredients in the soup - tomato paste, beef broth, veggies, all good.  I didn't even think about the bouillon cubes having anything bad in them...but, guess what.  They had gluten!  I feel like this might confirm my suspicion for quite some time - I have an intolerance to gluten.  Awhile back, I went to the doctor a few times for my bad stomach issues...she gave me a bland diet with no dairy and it didn't help.  I just kind of gave up and figured I would have to live the rest of my life feeling pretty miserable...well, that bland diet was full of mostly whole wheat and low-fat products just full of gluten!

I didn't end up eating lunh until around 2 and by then I was starving.  I was kind of avoiding food because I was annoyed and angry at the bouillon cubes...who knows where gluten is lurking....I was out and about with Lucas and we ended up at a Chickfila- I got the grilled chicken sandwich and just at the chicken and was not so bad, filled me up and didn't make me sick.

A visit to Jason's Deli with no mini muffins is sad

Sauerkraut and corned beef takes away the pain
Today is Thursday, gymnastics day, and the night that Abby gets to choose where we eat.  Today she chose Jason's Deli who has a separate Gluten Free menu!  Yayay Jason's Deli!  I was still finding it hard to follow Paleo so I decided to order my corned beef and sauerkraut on their gluten free I know there is debate about sauerkraut being Paleo because of it's salt content but, for me, you gotta pick and choose your inner battles. Soo..sauerkraut it is!  Well, when I got the sandwich, I decided that gluten free bread is something I could certainly experiment with...after my 30 day commitment.  I have committed to live Paleo, as strict as I can for 30 days.  So no bread, of any kind, for me!

I checked the Geaux Crossfit website for the Workout of the Day and am a bit nervous because we are asked to watch video before we show up tomorrow..uh oh....

I don't know...I just wasn't feeling it today...but I still made it through.  For some reason, if I tell myself that I am avoiding all the foods I love because of an allergy it is easier to resist than if I am doing it for a diet...okay, I knew I shouldn't have typed that because it makes me sound a little crazy....I guess I am just hoping tomorrow is a better day.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Day 10 (20 to go!)

This morning's workout was really insane.  We started out with 1000 meters on the rowing machine...then some crazy stretches followed by weightlifting moves that I am having a hard time doing....not because I'm not strong's more because I am not at all is almost like dancing...I don't have any rhythm and can't remember the moves.

So I ended up doing three rounds of:

10 pull ups
20 squats
30 sit ups

That is insane, if you ask me!  My big plan when I started was to get to my 90th sit up and tell Catherine that I wasn't done...I wanted to make it to 100!  Why does 100 sound like so many more than 90? is the reality.  I was the last one done (there were three of us and Catherine) and, honestly, I didn't think I was going to be able to do my last 10.  Anyone who knows me understands how hard it would be for me to give up...but, just as I was about to, the two guys that were working out started cheering for me...telling me I could do it.  Seriously, how amazing is that?  It just about makes me cry thinking of it.  They were done with their workouts and could have been on their way home..but they stayed until I was done.  I think that is why Geaux Crossfit works for me..I am only on week two and just really feel like I belong; like people are cheering for me.  Everyone there wants the other person to succeed.  It isn't like going to a "traditional" gym where you go and do your workout with your headphones on and then go home....I guess maybe that works for some people.  I can't understand why or how.  I am learning that working out is all about pushing yourself to your limits...if I was going to my old gym, would I have gotten through those last 10 push ups?  Umm noo..I wouldn't have even been doing push ups.  I would have been on the treadmill working up what I thought was a sweat before I joined Crossfit.

Why eat fast food when you can eat like a caveman?
 Today was most certainly one of those days where, on the way home, I would have normally stopped at a fast food restaurant and gone through the drive thru to pick up dinner for me and the family.  I was visiting a school in Baton Rouge in the afternoon and didn't have a chance to eat lunch.  Then, I had to work an hour later than usually.  On the way home, Jason called me and said the kids were tired and grumpy....I was hungry, tired, and didn't want to deal with figuring out a Paleo-friendly dinner.  Just when I was about to make the biggest cheat to date, my mother called and SAVED THE DAY.  She was just about to throw a couple of steaks and summer squash onto the grill and was checking to find out if Jason and I wanted some too.  How could I possibly choose a fast food cheeseburger and fries over a grilled steak?  I couldn't.  I ran by their house on the way home (they live a mile from us) and got our delicious food to go!  I brought it home and the family enjoyed a delicious dinner together.

I have been thinking a lot about my ultimate goal.  It seems that everyone know I am doing this diet and exercise (ummm..probably because it is the only thing I seem to talk about) and I am often asked what my goal is...when you have been overweight for as long as I have, I think it is kind of hard to even imagine what a healthy weight would be.  You can try to look it up but usually I find myself very discouraged when the "goal" wait shows that I have to lose over half my weight.  I am honestly just not interested, at least now, in making that big goal.  I want to be healthy - I want to exercise regularly and eat well... I want to go to a doctor's appt. and have weight NOT be an issue...I want to shop in a regular clothing store....all of these things are wants but I now have my first long-term goal:

My brother Matt is getting married to his fabulous wife-to-be Sarah.  Matt and Sarah are physically fit and enjoy the outdoors.  When they get married in October, I want to feel confident going hiking with them.  That is my goal.  Right now, if they were to ask me to go hiking I would say yes but would be suffering majorly from the cold sweats...on the ride to the hiking trails I would probably have an anxiety attack because I'd be afraid we would start and they would have to leave me behind...which happened once at Zion National Park.  I was hiking with some friends and had to take a shortcut back to the picnic area only to sit there and try not to blubber like a lunatic for an hour while they finished their amazing hike....  So, they are getting married during the second weekend in October.  My goal is to be strong and able to do a moderate hike with them.  I am not looking to climb a mountain or do some sort of "ultimate" feat with them...I just want to hike and enjoy it.  I have about 6 months to prepare which seems like a long time..unless I start eating cheeseburgers and fries....

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day 9 - 21 to go!! AKA Am I Poisoning My Kids?

I know I am being bad......
I am afraid today's breakfast and lunch was nothing exciting - just leftovers from previous meals.  I did have a cheat today though...and now I feel badly...oh curse you Diet Coke!  I have been a really heavy Diet Coke drinker for years and didn't have one during the first 6 days of Paleo.  This is seriously the longest I have gone since high school (maybe even middle school) without my drink of choice.....I was planning to just have water but couldn't resist...and it was really, really good.  But, I will move on and try my best to get through the rest of this day, week, month....without it.

I have been thinking a lot about being a mom and trying hard to be a good role model.  I can't help but to think about what lessons I have been teaching my kids as far as what to eat and not eat.  I mean, I assume that children are supposed to be snacking on Goldfish and yogurt and cereal and... and... and all this food that I think has probably made me feel sick for so long.  I can't help but to wonder how their bodies are handling their diet.  Last night I prepared myself the Paleo meatloaf, broccoli and cauliflower, and the kids and Jason ate regular meatloaf (aka cheese and breadcrumbs involved) and I made them brown rice to accompany it.  I felt compelled to make them the brown rice, like something was lacking on their plate if they only ate meat and veggies.  Now I am asking myself, what was the nutritional value of that rice?  Should I have included it?  I think these 30 days are going to convince me to look at my family's diet and not just my own.  Is what is working for me the diet that is right for them?  I can barely wait for Luke's 2 year old well check up in May.  I hope our pediatrician is ready for the caveman version of my past self!

Dinner was delicious...baked turkey breast. carrots, peas,  butternut squash....really good and satisfying.  Tomorrow I go to the gym again! 

My Family...worth getting up early in the morning to go to the gym and avoid my favorite foods be healthy for them!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 8 - 22 Days and Counting!

I really need to thank everyone for their amazingly supportive comments - Amy, Meghan, can I be so lucky, especially considering I've never met 2/3 out of three of you!

Today's WOD looked totally insane when i checked it our last night:

Workout of the DayFront Squat 5-5-5
Four rounds for time (half of all pull ups if you are new):
-10 L Pull Ups
-15 Push Ups
-15 Chest to Bar Pull Ups
-15 Push Ups
-20 Pull Ups
-15 Push Ups

CRAZY!  I think it may have scared some people away because there was just two of us in the 6am - 7am session.  The other person was a guy that has been going to Geaux Crossfit pretty much from the time it opened and is in super shape.

We started out with some warm up exercises - 500m on the rowing machine, lifting weights, exercising our arms...there was one that we did with big rubber bands...the movement was so simple - arms in front of you, bend your elbows even with your shoulders then bend from elbow to hand up to the air....omg....after 3 of them, my shoulders felt like they were on fire.  I cannot get over the pain!!!

My modified WOD was:
500m on rowing machine
20 jumping pull ups
15 modified push ups (then 10 when in rounds 2 and 3)
3 times

I have been having some back pain - not like I pulled anything but more like it just feels tired.  Catherine showed me what I was doing wrong and is helping me assume the right position so that pain doesn't become worse...At the end of the workout she had me do some stretches, including one that involved me laying on back on top of what looked to me like a pool noodle, and roll it up and was one of those hurt so good moments....

By the time I got to work for 8:30pm, I was feeling a little queasy and couldn't eat much for breakfast.  Luckily, the fabulous Kelly P. prepared an AMAZING lunch for the two of us.  Cashew Chicken, apple spinach salad, and onion soup - all Paleo friendly recipes.  The meal was so amazing....seriously!  I most certainly was not missing anything...

For a snack today...Kelly P. brought in a recipe she made from Paleo Solutions by Robb Wolfe - Paleo Pancakes.  They have almond butter, unsweetened applesauce, vanilla, eggs and cinnamon.  We topped ours with a little bit of mashed up strawberries. We even suckered one of colleagues, Maida to try them out (she is an adventurous eater).  If you are looking for something that looks and tastes like the real deal then you have come to the wrong place.  Don't get me wrong, they were actually really good.  And, unlike regular pancakes, they were really filling because they are made mostly of nuts.  The consistency made me feel like I was cheating....and they were really, really delicious - the nutty flavor went really well with the cinnamon.  I would say there are definite keepers on the Paleo diet! 

coconut oil...a little scary but yummy!
I think it is about time I bring up coconut of the oils that is thumbs up for Paleo.  I have never seen it or cooked with it before Day 1 and was eager to check it out....You cannot imagine how surprised I was when I found it....I was totally expecting something that looked like your typical vegetable/olive oil...but no indeed.  From the outside of the jar I would say this looks more like Crisco.  A friend had told me earlier that she uses it for chapstick so, when I got home from the store, Abby and I opened it up and smeared some on our lips.  Let me tell you, coconut oil smells amazing when you are using it to cook something.  I absolutely love it.  For you coconut haters, it does smell like coconut but I personally don't think it gives the food a coconut flavor.  It does take some practice to figure out cooking with it though...It melts down to what looks like water and isn't "greasy" like other oils.  As I move forward on this diet, I hope to practice with it in other recipes.......

I got home and was a little sad because I knew my mother cooked meatloaf for dinner tonight...her meatloaf is So good and so un-paleo.  Well she surprised me by making a paleo meatloaf that was totally beautiful AND delicious!  It was a great way to end Day 8.  I am going to try to go to Geaux CrossFit again tomorrow...we will see if my body can handle it!!

Delicious Paleo Meatloaf made by my Mum - topped with salsa and squash!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Week 1 - The Results

It has been 7 days....I cannot believe Week One is over.

And......I lost 6 pounds!!!!! Not only that, I feel stronger than I ever had and in more control of my life.  I can barely wait to see what Week 2 brings!!

Jason and I have been talking about what I would like to do to celebrate when I reach my goal..which, by the way, is to be healthy.  I don't have a set size or least not yet.  I am just striving to be healthy and strong...anyway...he came up with the perfect celebration.  When I reach my goal he and I will take the kids on vacation somewhere fabulous and renew our wedding vows!  Our 5 year anniversary is in April and he thought it would be great to renew our vows in a way to celebrate the beginning of our new and healthy lives!  I am hoping we will get to do that a one to two years!  Only time will tell!!

I am excited to go to Geaux Crossfit tomorrow!! 

Day 6 and Day 7 - Laissez Les Bon Temp Rouler

Well...I survived my trip to New Orleans...that city is just totally amazing!  I was not perfect..not even close.  But honestly, I did just about the best I could...with a few weak moments thrown in as the weekend progressed.

Jason and I got to the luncheon and they had some really delicious drink selections - I love those Starbucks Iced Coffees....they are soo good.  I stayed away though.  The lunch officially began with some chicken and sausage gumbo.  Man oh looked good.  I thought it was best for the waiter to leave mine off the table.  Jason ate it up and said it was really yummy.  The main course was a chicken breast on top of a big pile of really delicious looking mashed potatoes covered in some sort of creamy sauce.  Once again I asked the waiter to remove my plate.  I did my best to explain that I do not eat gluten or dairy.  He spoke with an accent and did not understand.  He kept asking if I was a vegetarian and I finally agreed.  I hoped for a vegetarian meal full of steamed veggies but instead got cheese ravioli in tomato sauce with a few green beans.   I ate the green beans...what is hard for me is bread.  They had some delicious looking rolls that everyone minus me enjoyed...I did my best not to make eye contact with the rolls and stared into space until everyone was done.  For dessert they had some sort of strawberry cheesecake on a biscuit thing....Jason swore it wasn't that good but ate it all.  He did get me some herbal tea that helped fill my stomach as the luncheon continued. 

Cheat 1
When it was over (it was really amazing....16 high school students received significant scholarships thanks to the George Rodrigue Foundation!!) Jason and I made our way to our hotel room where he decided to take a nap while I decided to hit the streets of New Orleans in search of some Paleo friendly food.  I walked for about 15 minutes and could only find a Subway which I didn't want...I LOVE Subway and am so thankful they are a "fast food" option but wanted something special....we were in New Orleans and I had just sat through a delicious luncheon eating only 4 green beans and a cup of tea.  I was feeling discouraged and disappointed and was about to give up when I turned the corner and there was Luke, one of John Besh's fabulous restaurants.  If you have been reading this blog from the beginning you have seen a photo of me with John Besh, my favorite celebrity chef.  Luke is an unbelievable restaurant and I was determined to find something as close to Paleo as I could get.  My first cheat of the vacation happened while I sat at the bar looking at the menu....I had a Diet Coke.  I love Diet Coke....I know it wasn't the best choice but my willpower was gone...and I enjoyed every. single. sip.  The most Paleo I could get was the Luke Burger that is OUT of this world!  I asked for it with no cheese, of course and as much as I didn't want to, I asked to switch the fries to steamed asparagus.  Now , if you haven't had Luke's french fries, you are totally missing out.  They are house made and in just about the best fries I have ever had.  But.... I went for the asparagus.  I walked back to the hotel to enjoy my meal and ate it up!  I only had two bites of asparagus because I was thought they were super delicious...way too good to be butter free...Jason ate them and really enjoyed them though.  The burger (without bun of course) was delicious.  My second cheat was the delicious caramelized onions on top.  I know they were cooked in butter but I couldn't resist.  In my opinion, those onions make the burger.  I just couldn't say no.  When I ordered the burger, I forced myself to say no to the cheese, the fries, the bun....but that was all I could resist.  I ate all of the onions and really savored each bite...

Dear John Besh, Thanks for This!

On to dinner...we met some really fabulous friends (hi L and S!) for dinner.  They took us to a fabulous restaurant that I have been wanting to try for awhile....Jacques Imos.  This restaurant is a must visit if you are in New Orleans - they have a huge menu including New Orleans staples done well.  There is always a wait - ours was a little over an hour but there's a great little bar next door called the Mapleleaf.  We went there where I tried the Paleo Solutions tequila, club sod and lots of lime... I drank some of it but, truthfully am more of a beer drinker (or rum) so decided to stick to unsweetened tea for the rest of the evening.

Soo...we got seated and they immediately brought over a plate of delicious looking cornbread muffins dripping in butter.  I almost said f*ck it right then...seriously.  Not only did they look amazing, everyone in the entire restaurant seemed to be eating them, in slow motion, moaning over the pure ecstasy of it was the longest five minutes of my life.  For an appetizer our  table got the shrimp and alligator cheesecake.  Again, I had to sit there and listen to how good it was....ugh..... when it was time to order,  I really didn't know what to do.  I tried talking to the waiter but, I mean, the place was packed...he could barely hear me and was super busy.  I ended up with a steak that was supposed to come with mashed potatoes AND onion rings but instead I got sweet potatoes (he assured me there was no dairy) and beets.  Before they brought out the steak, they brought us all the house salad. I had a few bites but was afraid the vinaigrette had sugar.  Well, the steak came and it had a glaze similar to A-1.  I did my best to scrape it off....and one bite of the sweet potatoes told me they were full of butter.  By this time, my dinner guests were all explaining how full they were because of the butter-drenched cornbread and alligator cheesecake and salad.  I was STARVING.  They were done and I was shoving in beets and steak as fast I could.  I actually ended up getting a bit embarrassed so I asked the waiter to pack up my food (which I shoved in my mouth when we got back to the hotel...hahaha.

My Pre Day 1 Meal at Port of Call
We had a lazy morning (which is a real treat if you are parents to a 2 and 4 year old) and decided to pack up and head to our all time favorite restaurant - Port of Call.  Port of Call has a very limited menu - they serve steaks, burgers and baked potatoes.  I would normally get the mushroom cheeseburger and loaded baked potato.  This time I got the mushroom burger, no bun and, Cheat Number 3, a baked potato with bacon bits and chives...I did not have the butter, cheese, or sour cream I would have normally had.  But, this was the meal that got my stomach feeling like it did before Day 1.  I had awful stomach pains all the way back to Baton Rouge.  Don't get me wrong, the food was really, really good....and I am actually glad that I attempted to eat it.  I was forgetting how sick I could feel if I ate the wrong foods.  It has just reinforced the way I have been feeling about Paleo.  It has only been one week but, before I began, I thought it was going to be diet...a temporary fix, just like all the others I have tried.  I am feeling more and more that perhaps this is the way I am meant to eat...the way my body wants me to eat. 

I honestly cannot get over what I used to put into my body on a daily basis - I just got back from grocery shopping and am really frightened now that I am actually reading labels.  Seriously, does everything contain high fructose corn syrup? I haven't had dinner yet - I am still feeling full from Port of Call.  I am sure it will be strictly Paleo though!  I did have an excellent snack - celery, carrots, and almond butter.  I have never had almond butter but it was quite good.  I have to say many thanks to Kelly P. who got me a sample of that and cashew butter to have on hand in case of emergencies.

In all, I had an amazing time in New Orleans. Jason and I got to spend some quality time together without the kids (thanks to my fabulous parents who watched them) and we got to spend time with friends.  Usually, the highlight of a getaway like this would be food-related.  Not this time..for me it was enjoying a leisurely ride on a streetcar with were open, there was a great breeze and excellent people watching...truly a great way to end Week 1! 


Friday, March 25, 2011

Day 5 (25 to go) aka tortes are sooo good but sooo bad

Well, that whole thing about being excited about todays WOD was totally and completely over when I checked out what we would be doing this morning.

Workout of the Day
3-3-3 Bench Press
3 Rounds for Time:
-400 Meter Run
-40 Push Ups
-20 KB Swings

I was pretty excited about the Bench Press...I don't know just makes me feel strong.  But then, then I read that we would be running and believe you me, that is a fat person's worst nightmare.  We know that as we are turning the first corner the non-fatties will already be zooming by on their second lap.  We know it isn't pretty...seeing us jiggle as we run.  And we know it is going to hurt all over and that hurt is just another reminder about how weak we have been in the past - my feet and knees hurt when I run because, before Day 1, I chose to eat whatever I wanted and allowed myself to get this overweight.  So when I got there I was not so thrilled.  We did our warm up exercises (that feel like an entire workout in itself) and started with the run.  Catherine modified my workout by having me run 200 hundred meters, do 20 push ups and 10 KB swings.  I was secretly excited because this is the first time she had me do the same number of rounds....3 times! But I am so very happy to say that I did it; which means that this morning, before most people are even awake I ran (and walked briskly) 600 meters, did 60 modified push ups and 30 KB swings.  Not so shabby if you ask me. 

Geaux CrossFit published a GREAT photo on their website of the gym post workout.  I just had to share - it really showcases how everyone feels after a workout...haah                               For breakfast I had leftover beef stew and it hit the spot.  I ran some errands on my lunch break and was in a bit of a bind regarding what to eat.  I was pressed for time and didn't know where to go.  I ended up trying out Qdoba where I had a "naked" salad (meaning no fried tortilla shell).  I got lettuce, steak, onion, pico, salsa, cilantro, and guacamole on my salad.  It was pretty good.  What I really wanted was a ground beef queso burrito with sour cream, rice, and extra cheese.  I knew that would kill my stomach though so it wasn't quite as hard to pass up.

I want to discuss which torte is better... :(

Now dinner, that was a tough one.  I spent the evening at a work event where my job was to man the buffet full of really great food.  Not only that, we had some out of towners at the meeting so I stayed at the table to explain what everything was and then had to listen to them say how good it is!  There were meat pies and crawfish pies and stuffed mushrooms and boudin balls, and fried catfish and finger sandwiches (why are finger sandwiches so darn good?  I mean, really, if this was pre-Day 1, I would have eaten the equivalent of like 8 sandwiches with no problem.)  The hardest thing for me to resist were these two yummy cheese tortes - one with figs and one with mango.  Of course these were the hit of the event and I had to listen to many a conversation about which torte was best.  I so wanted to be a part of that conversation.

After the reception was over, I had to pack up the leftovers bring it to a myself, in the car, surrounded by deliciousness... I cannot believe I can type this - I DID NOT EAT ONE BITE!  Perhaps even harder was resisting an old friend that has been with me for as long as I can remember, Diet Coke.  I can almost close my eyes and taste it....but I didn't!!!

In some odd way I feel like I am letting down some of my friends and family by getting my health together.  I mean, I was always the one you could rely on to share a dessert with or to say screw it and get the fried chicken AND loaded mashed I am writing this, I know it doesn't make any sense.  It sounds crazy but honestly, I feel a bit guilty.  Like I want to say, "sorry to screw up your meal again guys."

Tomorrow I go to New Orleans...a city full of amazing food, drink and everything else to avoid.  I feel like, if I can really make it though this weekend, I will be a stronger person for it.  Catherine gave me some great advice suggesting that I tell people I eat gluten free...much easier than explaining that I am trying to live my life as a caveman....I think that if I get a gluten free meal than I can pick and choose what I want to eat that is Paleo easier than just any meal.....tomorrow it is me vs. New Orleans!!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 4 (26 to go) aka Me vs. Chinese Buffet (that includes really good egg rolls)

Well I woke up this morning feeling a little achy and tired but also craving a Crossfit workout!  I am trying to keep it to three times a week.  Okay, that statement is so crazy  to me.  I have never been one to want to go to the gym.  And don't get me wrong, I have worked out there now three times and there is a certainly a time during each workout when I think that I have gotten myself into a totally insane situation and am full of's usually right around the time that I feel like reaching for the puke bucket...Seriously...I am so excited for tomorrow's workout at Geaux Crossfit!

So today was a good eating day.  I started off with a piece of ham and two poached eggs.  I got an egg poacher that is made for the microwave (just like the cavemen used to use..haha) because I was getting sick of hard boiled eggs.  It was good, but I think I am really getting sick of all eggs...will try something different tomorrow.

For lunch I had beef stew that I made in the crock pot that did not involve any flour or potatoes.  I also had some delicious cucumbers that Kelly P. made with some salt and pepper and vinegar.

For snack I had some really delicious soup that Kelly P. made out of leftovers from Day 1's chicken fajita salad.  I hated the salad I made but LOVED the soup she made.  It was a great afternoon snack! (she even heated it up for me because I was so busy at amazing is that?).

I was nervous about dinner.  On Thursdays, I take Abby to gymnastics.  It is also her reward day - if she sleeps in her own bed, does her chores, and is a good girl she gets to choose the restaurant to go to afterwards for dinner.  She ALWAYS chooses a Chinese buffet near my house because her all time favorite food is crab legs.  She is so Paleo without even trying it makes me sick - a big pile of crab meat for dinner with orange slices for dessert!  I decided to stay away from the buffet and got a big plate of steak/cabbage/broccoli/onion/zucchini/peppers from the hibachi and they grilled it up with some garlic and ginger.  I am sure there was some non-olive oil oil involved but I thought I did pretty good considering... Considering what? love for sweet and sour chicken, fried rice, crab ragoons, egg rolls (I really love egg rolls), lo mein, etc.... For the first time in my life, I was sitting at the restaurant and I looked around...I felt sorry for the other people sitting there shoving all of that food in.  The majority were overweight, looked uncomfortable in their clothes, and were eating the same unhealthy choices I would have eaten just last week (woowoowow...Day 4 seems like Day 44 at least).  I don't want to sound cheesy but seriously they were me.  They were how I have lived my life before Day 1.  I wish I could go up to them and tell them that I understand how they feel.  That even people like us can make a change.  I know that I still look like them on the outside.  I am still forced to shop in the plus size clothes...still the fattest one in the room.  But I have changed on the inside.  I know this it.  I am on the path that is going to save my life and I wish there was a way for me to take all of those people at the Chinese buffet with me.  But there isn't.  I know from experience that this decision is so personal...I mean to live your life with food being your comfort when you are sad, your reward when you are happy, your activity when you are bored....and to just give it up...ugh.  Even the thought of it makes me want to reach for a donut...or maybe a brownie, with chocolate chips, topped with ice cream...ugh....better stick to the Paleo diet...

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 3 (27 days to go!)

I am not going to's workout was brutal.  Seriously.....I didn't think I was going to make it:

Workout of the Day
Kipping work
3 Rounds with 5 Minute rest in between.
-500 Meter Row
-40 Squats
-30 Sit Ups
-20 Push Ups
-10 Pull ups

And I only did 2 Rounds of this workout modified for my level.  I actually mentioned the puke bucket and thought I might need it but I got myself together.  It was GREAT though - there were four of us in all and I was certainly the least fit and most overweight.  I feel bad to say this because of course I don't want anyone to suffer, but I was so happy to hear one of the strong and fit guys mutter that he was so exhausted he was seeing double...yayay!  I am not the only one!  haha

 I am such a sap though.  On the way to the gym I started sobbing (could be because I am working on little sleep) because I am just so thankful to have so many very supportive people surrounding me.  Not one person has told me (at least to my face) that this is not going to work.  That it is a waste of time and energy and money...not one.  I have received emails from people from family and friends that I haven't seen in years and even from strangers who are starting at the gym too (Hey Kim!  Glad to hear you didn't need the puke bucket either...hopefully we can meet in person sometime soon!!).

Then, on the way home I started sobbing (this time I am sure complete exhaustion had something to do with it) because I was just so damn happy.  I feel like I am in control of my life..well, at least for the last three days....and I made it through a workout that I would NEVER have even considered if Catherine hadn't seemed so sure I could complete it (words cannot express my thanks Catherine and I am not just saying that so you will take it easy on me this Friday..hah)  I probably won't be able to walk tomorrow but I did it!  It's only been a few workouts but I swear I already feel stronger. 

Me breaking up with a biscuit.  I will miss you.
Food was a little difficult today.  After I worked out, I went to the doctor's office to do fasting blood work.  I got out of there at around 9:00am and was STARVING.  My mum, Lucas and I decided to go to our favorite breakfast place - Franks.  Franks is one of the places that has a sign out front that states they have best biscuits in the world.  The thing is, they really do.  They are just was a bit of a struggle to say no.  I ate scrambled eggs and some bacon and some ham.  I did not have one bite of Lucas' pancakes or my mum's biscuits with butter and orange marmalade...uhmmmmmm..... But I felt full and happy afterwards!  And I have to say, this is only Day 3 but my stomach has felt better than it has in years.  I have gone to the doctors about my stomach issues before but we could never really pinpoint what it is...just figured it was a result of my gallbladder being removed.  All I know is, that for these three days, I have honestly felt better physically than I have for pretty much as long as I can remember.  Maybe the Paleo diet is the way to go....

Luckily, I stayed up late last night to prepare for lunch.  Again, Day 1 was very discouraging because I tried to eat foods I wouldn't normally eat (aka a salad with grilled chicken) so since then I have been focusing on making the foods that I do like Paleofied... So last night I made ground turkey with Mexican seasoning (fyi..normally I would use the prepackaged taco seasoning but BEWARE!  It is full of not so good stuff...I did some cumin and garlic powder and black pepper and onion powder and it was really good.  For extra vegetables, I added an entire package of broccoli slaw that pretty much cooked down to nothing.  I love Taco Salad and actually have a tradition of going, with the girls at work,  to Taco Salad Tuesday at a cafeteria in the building next time mine every week.  So, Kelly P. and I created a Paleo Taco Salad with the ground turkey, lettuce, avocado and salsa.  Honestly, I did not feel like I was missing the fried tortilla, sour cream or cheese...well..maybe I missed the cheese a little..ha  But really, it was so good that I ate half of it before I remembered to take a picture!

Tonight will be leftover spaghetti squash for dinner.... Kelly P. and I have planned our meals for the next week and they include beef stew (homemade/Paleofied) that is cooking in the crock pot right now, Paleo pancakes (I will reveal the recipe if they are worth making), and chicken and veggie soup just to name a few. 

On the way home today I stopped at Baums Bakery....I am serious when I say it took A LOT of will power to not buy something like a cupcake and shove it in my mouth and never mention it to anyone..I mean if a tree falls in the woods and no one is around..does it make a sound?  You know what I mean?  Sooo...I went there because if my grandma was alive today, it would have been her 99th birthday.  We have a tradition of eating a lemon donut on her birthday each year because they were her favorite...... I wanted my mother to continue the tradition even if I could not.  So I got to the counter and ordered her donut and, since it was in the evening, lucky me learned that it was buy one get one free!!!  Seriously?  That is just so unfair.  For the record I got a free apple fritter and gave it to my dad......My grandma, like just about everyone else in my family, was a habitual dieter.  I like to think that she would be proud of me for not eating a donut on her birthday but working instead to become a stronger and healthier me.  My grandma was 93 when she died and until the very end, she was feisty and full of personality.  Over these next few weeks when I am struggling I will do my best to think of her and the other strong women in my family and focus on what needs to be done.

Day three is officially over!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 2 (28 Days) Easy Does It

I have to say that Day 2 has been remarkably easier than Day 1.  Last night, I ended up eating a banana right before bed because I just didn't feel right.  I was afraid it was the new diet and I would wake up feeling like shit but I didn't!  I think I just needed a good night of sleep.

I am a little achy from working out on Monday but am actually really, really excited to head to the gym tomorrow.  I am not kidding.  This whole CrossFit workout is super hard work but totally fun in a I want to punish myself for eating all those donuts sort of way.  I know I am just beginning but it feels right.  I have done the regular gym thing in the past....I do the treadmill or bike or elliptical machine but I think actually pushing yourself to workout to your limit is a really hard thing to do.  For me, this group setting (with a trainer watching your every move) makes sense.  Clearly, if I had self motivation and a little restraint in the past, I would not be in the situation I am now. (aka fat mom).
Kelly P. Eating Paleo!
 So, for breakfast I had 2 eggs and some delicious bacon that my colleague and friend Kelly P. cooked on the grill.  I am so lucky to have her....when I told her about the Paleo diet she didn't say I was crazy for thinking about it.  She told me that she would do it too so we could support each other.  I am trying hard not to start blubbering like a fool (although I bet it burns some calories) but how amazing is that?  I mean, let's face it.  We are really with our coworkers as much, if not more, as we are with our families... Kelly P. and I are taking turns cooking each other's meals, basically talking about Paleo whenever we have a free minute, and planning what we should eat together.  For lunch today, she brought in a hamburger for me and grilled fish for her (I don't really eat seafood) and mixed vegetables and a sweet potato to share.  Lunch was fabulous!  Seriously, she was just about to leave for the day and stopped by my office to confirm that we were prepared for  tomorrow...okay now I AM blubbering a little bit....

Dinner was delicious thanks to my amazing mother.  She offered to cook since Jason and I had an appt. this evening.  She made Paleo friendly spaghetti sauce with loads of veggies.  For non-Paleo eaters, she made regular spaghetti.  For me, she made spaghetti squash and it was so yummy!  Everyone tried it and even my dad thought it was good stuff!  I think maybe next time we will all be eating spaghetti squash!  YAYAY

I have to admit, I am starting to get worried about Paleo Weekend Number 1.  I am working at a special event on Friday and my job assignment involves me assisting at a reception, in particular making sure the catering is set up and looks good.  The caterer for this event is really good...I mean delicious.  I am working again on Saturday...attending a luncheon to honor some of Louisiana's very talented students.  I am not sure if it is a plated lunch or buffet but am hoping for a buffet because I think I would have more options.  Jason and I decided to spend a romantic night in New Orleans after the luncheon.  Now, I don't know if you are from New Orleans or have been there for a vacation, but a romantic night usually involves some drinking - hurricanes, hand grenades, pimms cups just to name a few.  And it would not be a trip to New Orleans without a stop at our favorite restaurant Port of Call.  I think I will be okay with the food part - they do have the best steaks ever - but they also have my favorite drink.  It is a non-frozen Pina Colada and, just thinking about it, makes me weep with happiness.... but it is so not Paleo...not even a little bit.  Sooo....I will do my best to make it through without going overboard.  I read a semi-paleo margarita recipe (in Rob Wolfe's Paleo Solution) that is tequila, the juice of a whole lime, and club soda....perhaps I will try it out!

***A note about my weight....I have tried, honestly tried to type my weight on this blog.  I am sorry, but I just cannot do it.  I can easily talk about having to pee standing up because my muscles hurt so bad or crying in the bathroom because I am afraid my weight makes me a bad mom but I just cannot type my weight.  Sad, isn't it?  I hope that I eventually can.....I certainly won't have a problem how much my weight changes from week-to-week (hopefully for the better :)) Also, I am having blood work done on Wednesday and my Endocrinologist is testing all of the levels that are supposed to be positively effected by Paleo...glucose, cholesterol, etc.......I will keep you posted on how those tests compare to pasts tests and testing at the end of these 30 days.  :)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 1 (aka 29 to go!!)

Of course Lucas decided to keep us up from about 3:30am ...but regardless.  I made it through my first official workout at Geaux Crossfit! I arrived a little before 6:00am and was surprised to see so many people there......I would say there were about 8 of us in all.  We started by running (outside) around the building.  I have to admit, this really did scare me.  I knew I would be the last person to make the two laps and when I was just about finished, I just wanted to burst into tears.  I figured this would be the way it was going to be...everyone working out in a team together and me...the fat one....just trying to keep up.  As I turned the last corner though, one of the guys that was working out this morning was there to give me some encouraging words.  He told me it would get easier and I had to stick to it and I was doing a great job and all the right things that gave me the confidence to continue.  It was really amazing - just what I needed!  If I had the energy (which I certainly didn't even though we were still just "warming up") I may have given him a hug. 

So, after that we did some other warming up stretches and push ups before the actual workout began.  The thing with Crossfit is that each workout is different.  You can go on the website the evening before to see what the workout will be.  It pretty much looks like jibber jabber unless you are going to the gym.  For instance, here is today's workout:

Workout of the Day3-3-3 Back Squat
5 Rounds for time:
-10 Push Press (55/75)
-10 Overhead Squat (55/75)
-10 Pull Ups
-20 Double Unders

My workout was modified for my level.  Catherine (the fabulous trainer) did  a really amazing job of making sure that each of us had an individualized workout so we all finished at about the same time and, it looked to me, like we were all equally exhausted and sweaty. 

about 15 minutes after workout
and still bright red.....
 Okay...let me explain what I personally did.  First of all....I can't remember the 3-3-3 back squat because everything right after the run around the building was a blur.  After that, I actually did three rounds of the different exercises while others did five.  It started with me lifting the bar that you put weights on from my shoulders up to over my head.  My bar didn't have any weights but it was weighted....(it felt heavier as the workout progressed).  I did this 10 times and then moved onto my least favorite thing in the world - squats.  This time, I did them leaning on a weighted ball on the wall.  I feel like this helped me a bit with my form.  Then I did 10 jumping pull ups (as in I don't have the strength to lift myself up so I jump up).  That was followed by jump roping 25 times.  I did this routine three times.  Okay, this is embarrassing but I am so very, very excited about being able to jump rope.  Who knew?  I told Katherine that I didn't think I could and she convinced me to try.  AND. I. DID. IT.  YAYAAY!

Including the warm up, it took me about an hour to complete this work out.  At the end I was exhausted, and sweaty, and red-faced, and could barely walk...but it was fabulous!  I am so excited!  This kind of workout can't possibly get boring.  The other people in the class were incredibly supportive with one another.  I really am excited to go back.  As the day has progressed (my workout started at 6am) I am getting a little more stiff. I  am not sure if I will be able to go to the gym tomorrow but (and I am not lying here) I hope I can!!

So, on to diet.  I didn't eat before I worked out.  I know that some people say that is an absolute no no but it works for me.  I literally sleep in my workout clothes.  I get up, throw on a sports bra, brush my teeth and hit the road.  Right after I worked out, I ate a hard boiled egg.  I got to work about 1.5 hours later and was feeling pretty hungry.  I had two hard boiled eggs, 1/2 cup of strawberries/blueberries and 1/4 cup of chopped pecans and cashews.  And I am doing my best to be strict with my diet and all but I am not willing to give up my coffee in the morning with fat free french vanilla creamer.....I just cannot do it!

So, that lasted me until about lunch time.  I did eat a few sunflower seeds between the two meals but not many.  For lunch I had a salad (lettuce tossed in balsamic vinegar and olive oil) with raw carrots and celery and grilled peppers and onions.  For a protein I had chicken that I cooked last night with some cumin. I also added a little salsa and guacamole.... It was good and filling.  I do not love chicken and cannot eat it everyday but I do love grilled onions and peppers so that made it a yummy meal.

The hardest time for me today was from 1:45pm until about 3:30pm.  That is the usual time for me to snack.  I tried to eat some celery and carrots in hopes that would help but it didn't.  I had some almonds and a coworker shared her sparkling water with me...but I really just had to work through it...
For dinner I had corned beef, cabbage, carrots and onions.  My parents were out of town for St. Patrick's Day so we are celebrating a little late....I did not have any boiled potatoes or Irish soda bread or butter....sob... :)

In all, I would say Day 1 was a success.  I would not have been able to make it through Day 1 without so many incredibly supportive people around me..: Catherine, guy at the gym in the yellow shirt, lovely coworkers that have changed the lunchroom conversation into what we want to eat to what we are going to eat based on our diets :), and my fabulous family.

When I got home from the gym, Abby pretty much summed my day up: she started laughing hysterically and said "mama you have a ponytail (I never wear a ponytail) and you are purple and shiny (sweaty).

Today was tough, I am not going to lie.  I am already sick of grilled chicken and salad...I am just not a huge fan of chicken.  I think I have to focus on making the foods I love fit into the diet instead of trying to eat food I wouldn't normally eat....  I am tired and achy and want a brownie.  I am tired and hope the kids will go to bed on time in their own beds without a fight....

BUT Day 1 is done!

Woo hoo!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

I Love My Family More Than a Chocolate Frosted Donut

My husband and son
Today was a great day in many ways but it was also emotionally exhausting.  Let's start with the great - I got to spend the majority of the day with my family and friends at the St. Patty's Day parade.  The weather was perfect, the kids had lots of fun, and we caught some great throws.

Here is the emotionally exhausting part.....when you're fat, you are constantly gaging everyone else's physique - are they skinny, are they fat, are you the fattest person at the parade...that stuff is pretty much always going through your mind.  I wonder if other people (i.e. not overweight) have the same kind of thoughts... So, because of my new commitment to changing my life, I have my body image on the brain even more.... I wish I could have held a sign or made a t-shirt that explained the fact that I am about to embark on a journey....don't discount me as a typical fat person just yet....wait and see.....but I couldn't.  Instead, I had the same unease about my body image..especially around my children.  Are people judging me as a parent or as a wife based on weight?  Do people feel bad for my husband?  Do they look at me the same way I look at parents who smoke?

Of course all of this is going through my head but, and here is that disconnect I keep mentioning, I still managed to eat a delicious, just out of the oven donut.  Here's the thing about donuts...I know they are going to make me feel like crap.  I never feel good after I eat a donut.  I don't know if it is because I no longer have a gallbladder but they just tear my stomach apart.  So, I ate one - knowing: a. I am already feeling like a big green beached whale at the parade and b. as soon as I am done eating it, I will feel have cramps and feel like my stomach is going to explode.  My friends, Jason, and I even kinda laughed at it.  Jason took a photo documenting it and said it would be a good one to put on this blog. He's right.  I am not going to pretend that I am 100% on board for this big lifestyle change and think it is going to be smooth sailing.  I think it is going to suck.  The person at Geaux CrossFit that talked to me about nutrition mentioned her troubles with withdrawal from sugar when she switched to the Paleo diet.  And this is coming from a perfect bodied - toned, thin, and tan - trainer.  I am ready to fight this uphill battle.  I am addicted to food - sugar, fat, carbs, etc.... and I am going cold turkey in a little more than 24 hours.  So, if you happen to see me the next couple weeks and I seem a little grumpy you will know why - I am facing my demons head on in the hopes to become a healthier and stronger me.

My daughter
I do want to officially thank Geaux CrossFit for mentioning me and my journey on their website and Facebook page.  It certainly makes a girl more accountable for herself when she knows pretty much everyone around her is reading along as the story unfolds.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Final Friday Night!

My trainer Catherine knows me all too well....or maybe I am just more like other habitual "lifestyle changers" (I dare not say dieters) than I think.  I got an email from her reminding me to not go crazy with my eating during this last weekend before living like a cave woman....I really am trying have a list of foods that I want to formally say goodbye to.  I mean, they have been my support system for so long.  I feel like I can't just stop and never see them again.  It's kinda like the debate about what to do when you decide to try a different you formally break up with them or do you explain the change?  I feel like I need to explain the change.  So this evening, while I am lying in bed in my pajamas eating an ice cream cone I do feel some guilt and unease.  Guilt because I know these are just extra calories that will be added to what I already need to lose and unease because I am about to face some uncharted waters..... tonight was my official goodbye to one of my true loves...goodbye ice cream.  I will indeed miss you but it is time for me to take back my life and become healthy and strong for my children, husband, family, friends, and colleagues - all the people that depend on me.

I was at lunch today with a group of colleagues for a lingerie shower on behalf of someone soon getting married (congrats Jessica!) and I realized a few things...first of all, my colleagues are so much like me in a lot of ways.  We eat lunch together just about every day, usually in our lunch room at work.  We begin by discussing what we are eating, and then talk about what we wish we were eating, then discuss what we are having for dinner, then read through magazines and talk about recipes that sound good but we will probably never actually make.  I would say we talk about food about 80% of the is amazing what a role food plays in our conversations!

Some of my colleagues are also struggling with their weight and are following new weight loss plans.  They were telling me about different rewards they have promised themselves based on weight loss goals (i.e. 10 pounds = manicure and 50 pounds = Ipad).  I think this sounds like great incentive and have decided to start working on my list:

  • first 10 pounds - 1 hour of alone time...just me and my Nook so I can read uninterrupted (my husband agreed to this one)
  • 20 pounds - an uninterrupted visit to Barnes and Noble....including a coffee
  • first chin up without any help - new work out outfit
  • 30 days on Paleo - fabulous re-evolution t-shirt mentioned in last post
  • 50 pounds - vacation to the beach (Dauphin Island or Perdido Key)
I haven't yet chosen a total amount I want to lose or a goal weight.  I just want to be healthy and strong and to be able to shop in a regular I guess I will have to think of more incentives.  Tell me, what would your goals be?  What would it take for you to remain committed to this kind of lifestyle change?  Because all of us who have struggled with our weight know that there is some kind of disconnect in our minds...I just cannot quite break through it....Here is an example.  Last night I was at Abby's gymnastic and very aware about the fact that I am the fattest parent  (which made me feel like a bad mom).  I wanted to make an announcement apologizing that I have allowed myself to get as out of shape as I am and let everyone know that everything is going to change on Monday....of course I didn't make that announcement and, after gymnastics, went to ChickFilet with Abby and supersized my waffle fries.  Why do I do that?  For some reason, the embarrassment about being fat is not enough to actually get me to stop eating.  For that reason alone, I will focus on incentives.  I hope that, with Catherine's help, I will eventually be working so hard to be healthy but for now I will settle on 1 hour of reading my Nook.....

Till tomorrow, when I break up with my favorite food....garlic bread.

Three Days Till P Day!

Soo...I have read Paleo Solutions by Robb Wolf and am ready to make a 30 day commitment to the Paleo lifestyle.  I will spend the weekend preparing - cleaning out the kitchen, grocery shopping and cooking foods that fit this diet.  I know from experience that it is the lack of preperation that will lead me to eating donuts
and fast food.  I have already decided that my reward will be the fabulous t-shirt that is available from a great Paleo-friendly website, paleobrands.  It is a picture of "re-evolution" of man and it rocks!  Can't quite wear it yet....I need to have some results!
I am very, very happy to know that my colleague and good friend Kelly has decided to attempt the 30 day Paleo lifetsyle with me!  All of us who have dieted know that there is certainly safety in numbers.  I am so glad that we are in it together.  Incidently, she is also the friend that "dieted" with my by getting the small order of queso....ha

Paleo Solutions is a good read.  For me personally, it went a bit too heavy into the whole science of how the Paleo diet works - I do not need to know all the details.  I do appreciate knowing that this information is available if I do really need it.  Like many, I love reading the testimonials and sample diets.  This book is great because the sample diets come complete with weekly recipes.  Robb Wolf also has a pretty amazing wesbite that includes some really amazingly helpful tools, including a shopping list.  So, I will say goodbye to many staples in my current diet - bread, bagels, cheese, baked goods, milk, chocolate, chocolate, and chocolate and hello to life as a caveman, or cavewoman.  Seriously though, if I can do this, I think just about anyone can.  Who wants to join me on this journey?  Day 1 starts on Monday!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

What have I gotten myself into?

Last night was insane.  I think I had two panic attacks driving to the gym and burst into tears while talking to my very supportive (even though he thinks I am crazy) husband.

So, I meant to arrive at Geaux Cross Fit early but I had to make a pit stop.  I was so nervous that I had to stop at a drugstore to get some antacids...stress causes me some major heartburn.

I arrived and spent a few minutes hyperventilating in my car before going in.  I saw people coming and going and guess what?  No one was was a nightmare.  Everyone was what I anticipated: fit and tan....again..why do those go together?  If I lose enough weight will I become tan?

I am very proud to say that I did it.  I worked up enough nerve to go through the door.  The first person I saw was Catherine, the best trainer a girl could hope for.  If I didn't know she was in there, ready to support me, I probably would have chickened out.

Now this gym, is not your typical set up - cardio area, weights, etc.  There were some rowing machines, weights, medicine balls, and that what looked to me like an adult jungle gym.  There was no place for me to go hide so that no one could see me work out.  Catherine explained to me that there is a different workout every single day and everyone does the same thing, just modified for your fitness level.  This. Scares. Me.  But I haven't even started that exercise yet.

Catherine took me through what they call baseline.  It is a series of exercises that I do while she times me.  Every month or so I can go back to do this same exercise routine and check on my progress based on time.  It started with the rowing machine...I was basically out of breath by just trying to figure out how to get my big butt on the little seat and strap my feet in without falling off.  Then I had to do my LEAST favorite thing in the world (I think I would rather be forced to eat a big pile of sh#t).... Squats!  Ugh..I hate them.  I know I can't do them right so I look like a f#cking idiot when I try and they hurt me in places that don't want to be hurt.  Why can't I set my butt down and keep my body straight?  I just don't get it.  From there I had to do sit ups, modified and modified again push ups (as in I couldn't do it the normal way or the girlie way so I had to do it the fattie way) and modified, modified and modified again chin ups (meaning I feel badly for everyone who saw me attempt them).  Catherine led me through this routine to show me how to do each thing.  This introduction was enough to make me want to grab the puke bucket (yes the gym has a puke bucket in case you push yourself just a little too far).  Then she told me it was time to exercise!  Ugh!  So I went through the whole routine and honestly gave it my best.  Here's the thing, if I am doing something that takes me away from spending time with my kids than I sure as heck better give it my 100%.  Well, that and the fact that Catherine was watching my every move and I didn't want her to get annoyed.

So I did it - I did the rowing until Catherine told me to stop and the squats that I hate more than anything and all the extra exercises and just when I thought I was going to collapse, I was done!  And here is the most embarrassing part...I had only exercised for like 10 minutes!  Oh jeez...I cannot believe it.

When that was over and I was able to control my breathing so I could hear what was going on around me, I met with another employee..I can't remember her name because I was too busy trying to concentrate on breathing so my face was no longer purple.  She went over their website and explained that everyone at the gym has a login where you put your exercise for the day and list everything you eat.  The gym follows the Paleo Diet or hunter/gatherer diet where you actually only eat what the hunter gatherers of the past ate - lean meats, eggs, veggies, fruits and nuts.  That dairy (does that really include cheese and ice cream) and no bread (even garlic bread???).  She recommended a book to read, The Paleo Solution which I am very happy to report is available on Nook.  I started reading it last night - it is very interesting.  I will give a better review once I read more.....

So, here's the thing.  I know this all sounds radical - the crazy, non-traditional exercise and the crazy, non-traditional (at least in this time period) diet (ahem..I mean eating lifestyle) but I really feel like I am ready.  Sure I woke up and needed my husband to help me out of bed because my body felt like it got hit by a truck...not to mention the fact that I literally had to pee standing up today because I couldn't get on and off of a toilet without help...but I did it.  I made it through the work out.  The highlight for me (besides actually showing up for the appt.) was the fact that I did like 20 sit ups.  My daughter has been asking me to show her what a sit up looks like because they do them in her gymnastics class...but I have been too scared to try in front of her.  I didn't think I could do one.  Catherine, the lovely and supportive trainer, convinced me to try. I tried and I succeeded!

To all you other overweight 30 something women out there...I know it is so hard to be the fattest person in the gym....but I think you should give it a shot.  Come join me at Geaux Cross Fit - believe me, when you walk in, you will know which one is me because I stick out like a sore (or at least fat)'s the thing.  I am sick of being the fattest person in the room no matter where I am....I am sick of immediately looking at every crowd that I see searching for someone fatter than me.  I am sick of being afraid that today is the day I am going to wake up to my children realizing I am the fattest mom out of all of their friends.  So please, join me at my new gym or another gym that has trainers to give you the individual attention we so desperately need in order to exercise effectively.  Truthfully, if Catherine wasn't there I would not know that today, when I go home, I can show Abby how to do a sit up.  That is incentive enough for me!

And the Journey Begins........

I have been overweight for my entire adult life.  Like many, I have tried pretty much every weight loss plan out there....some work for awhile but none have ever really felt like a "lifestyle" change no matter what their advertisements say.  They have always been a diet that eventually ends.

I have thought about weight loss surgery but really believe I can do it without going so extreme.  I mean...I love to eat and if I had surgery that only allowed me a teaspoon or so of food every few hours I think I would lose my mind.

Sooo...I have been thinking about coming up with a weight loss plan for awhile.  Then, I ended up running into my old personal trainer back when my daughter was just about 1 (shes four now).  Catherine was the best trainer - she really respected me but was firm with my workouts.  I was so scared the first time we met, I actually burst into tears.  I was embarrassed by myself then and to be measured and weighed by this beautiful was about enough to make me curl into fetal position.  But working with Catherine ended up being a really amazing experience.  For the first time in my life I felt strong.  I had more energy.  I enjoyed going to the gym.  But then, as always, life got in the way.  Catherine left to work at another gym.  I became pregnant with my son (who is now almost 2) and my time going to the gym was over.

Last weekend though, I ran into Catherine at Albertsons.  Of course, when I saw her, the first thing I did was look in my cart and try to casually put my arm over the brownie mix I got to make later that evening...luckily I hadn't stopped by the ice cream aisle yet..... :(

We started talking and she told me great news - she is working at a new and innovative gym in Baton Rouge!  I decided to check it out.  I went to their website and what did I see?  All amazingly fit people working out.  I went through the photo gallery...there was one group shot that was a little blurry.  I convinced myself that one woman standing in the back was perhaps a little overweight......

I guess we will see.  Tonight is my first meeting with Catherine at the new gym.  I have decided to be okay with being the fattest person working out....I am determined to not let it get to me.

Here's the thing.... my daughter Abby is four and my son Lucas is going to be two soon.  Right now, they don't realize their mom is fat.  They aren't totally embarrassed by me.  My daughter doesn't complain that, when she does her sit ups for gymnastics class, I cannot do them with her.  She was having a hard time understanding what a sit up should look like and I had to go to the bathroom and cry because I felt guilty for not being able to show her.  Sometimes my back aches and I cannot hold my son for as long as I would like...I could go on and on.... I only have a short amount of time before they will understand body image.  Obesity is a childhood epedemic.  As a loving mother, it is my responsibility to do all that I can to prevent my children from being overweight.  I turn my nose up at parents that smoke do they expect to explain to their children that smoking is bad if they do it themselves?  Well....I am now realizing that I can be added to that equation.  How can I tell my kids the importance of eating healthy foods when I am heavier than I have ever been - heavier than when I was 9 months pregnant.

So, Catherine...I hope you and your gym filled with skinny, muscle toned, tanned (why is it that they are always tan when us fatties are always so pale and pasty looking??) is ready for me.  Because I am ready for you.  umm..I think.