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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Some recipes

Some of you have been asking what I eat and what recipes I enjoy. Most of my meals are courtesy of recipes I've gotten from Nancy. I'll post some more later, but here what is a typical day looks like:

Breakfast (Automated): Egg White Wrap w/ 1/2 Banana (199 calories)
  1. 3 egg whites
  2. 1 clove minced garlic
  3. 1 green onion chopped
  4. 1/2 cup spinach or shredded zucchini
  5. 1/4 sweet onion diced
  6. handful sliced mushrooms
  7. red pepper flakes (depends on how spicy you can take it, but I use about 1 teaspoon or so)
  8. salt & pepper to taste
Snack: 12 almonds w/ 1 banana (188 calories total) or 1 apple (160 calories total)

Lunch (Automated): Homemade Lentil Soup (300 calories)
 (I'll post the recipe soon!! Don't have it handy at the moment.)

Snack: High Fiber Cereal (120-150 calories depending on the cereal)
You can use Kashi or Fiber One. Both have a great supply of fiber and protein and are phenomenal hunger fighters! :) I pre-package mine in plastic baggies, 1 cup each. Just grab a baggie and go!

Dinner: Varies! Always around 300-400 calories though...
Option 1: Apple Chicken with Spinach (makes 1 serving -- my own concoction!) (approx 321 calories)
  1. 1 svg (approx 3 oz) of lean chicken breast, cubed (I like to use the pre-cooked, no preservatives added frozen chicken, but you can use whatever chicken you have handy)
  2. 1/2 small apple finely chopped (I usually snack on the other half while I cook)
  3. 1 cup frozen (or fresh) spinach (when using frozen I add about 1/3 cup water as well)
  4. 1/2 raw onion
  5. 1-2 cloves minced garlic
  6. Red pepper flakes, salt & pepper to taste
  7. about 1-2 teaspoons of Mrs. Dash Mediterranean Seasoning
  8. 1/2 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • pour olive oil into sautee pan on medium high heat
  • add all ingredients to pan
  • toss frequently, sautee for approximately 15-20 minutes (if chicken is pre-cooked) or until chicken is completely cooked through
  • pour into a bowl and enjoy!
Option 2: Chicken with Acorn Squash (serves 2, super easy!!, approx 150-170 calories, add )
  1. Pierce acorn squash with fork several times, place on microwave safe dish, and microwave on high for approximately 8-10 minutes (varies by size of squash and wattage of microwave)
  2. While squash is in microwave, spray pan with Olive Oil spray, sautee 2 svgs (or about 6 oz) of chicken breast with 1/2 diced onion, 1-2 cloves garlic, seasoned to taste (you can use chicken cutlets, diced/cubed chicken, etc)
  3. When acorn squash is soft and ready, cut in half, spoon each half onto it's own plate and add a little sprinkle of salt
  4. When chicken is thoroughly cooked, spoon onto the squash plates and enjoy!
Option 3: Boca Burger w/ Baked Potato (serves 1, approx 480 calories, also good as a lunch option!)
  1. pierce potato and microwave until done
  2. spray sautee pan with olive oil spray, add boca burger, sliced onion, red pepper flakes, a sprinke of garlic salt, flip burger after 5 minutes, then plate
  3. once potato is done, microwave 1 cup frozen broccoli florets with 1T water for approx 5-8 minutes; while broccoli is cooking, dice or slice potato and add to plate
  4. to avoid sour cream and add protein I use 1/2 cup cottage cheese over my potato, add a little salt and pepper to taste
  5. add broccoli to plate and you're good to go!
I'll have some more recipes posted later, but this is basically what I eat. LOL I thought for sure I'd get bored... but I love it! Having the automation is a lifesaver! I have tried many new recipes over the last several weeks, and I'll post those as soon as I can.

You can also check out Nancy's blog for some super yummy recipes!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Made it through the Holidays!

Well, I made it through the holidays without any major issues. :) I was able to enjoy the time with my family over the entire Christmas week without losing sight of my goal. I brought my own food to enjoy during dinner at Olive Garden with my parents and siblings, hubby, and niece. I also brought my own dinner when we went to my Aunt's house and avoided the cheesy lasagna and cheesy bread AND homemade fudge. :) On Christmas day I actually got to enjoy the same meal as everyone else because we had turkey, sweet potatos, and green beans available.

I'm still doing my hour of exercise every day. Scott and I bought bicycles with some Christmas money we got and biked 5 miles the other day! My behind is still a little sore LOL but I had so much fun biking! :) I'm looking forward to doing the 5K on January 9th. I missed the deadlines for the Disney race, and also for the Princess Half Marathon this spring, but I'm looking for an alternative. For my 5K on the 9th I'm just looking for a school track I can use. I'm inviting all my family and friends to come cheer me on! :) If you want to come out and cheer me on my run/walk you're more than welcome! I'll let you know where and what time as soon as I have that figured out. LOL

I'm feeling a little anxious about my 5K though because the running part is still so hard for me. I have finally gotten up to jogging for 2 minutes straight at one time, but after that I can only do spurts of 45-60 seconds throughout the remainder of my workout. I'm hoping that over the next couple weeks it increases though. But like Nancy reminded me this morning, it's not about how long it takes me, or whether I run or walk the whole thing. The important thing is that I finish! And I know I will. :)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

It's been a while, and tons is going on!! :)

I have been meaning to write for a few days now, but keep putting it off so I can focus on what I'm writing. Well, a lot has happened in the last week or so! My goals have been amped up dramatically all in anticipation of going back on the Dr. Oz show for a follow up episode!!!!!

I got word last week that they'll be bringing me back to NYC to tape an update segment the middle of January. I'm guessing it will air sometime in early February or so. As of Thursday of last week I have lost 34 pounds and 7 inches in my waist. My goal in this 4 weeks leading up to the taping is to lose another 16 pounds, and at least 3 more inches in my waist for a total of 50 pounds and 10 inches lost in 12 weeks!

To accomplish this Nancy and I are ramping up my routine. We have re-structured my calorie intake to allow my body to work more efficiently. I'm also working out for an hour every day (and I mean EVERY day). This is in preparation for my 5K (as well as my half-marathon in the spring) in addition to burning as much fat as possible to help in my weight loss.

While the workouts have been quite taxing (I firmly believe 1hour is way more than 2.5 times harder than 30 minutes lol) the hardest part has not been indulging in any nibbles here or there of all the Christmas goodies laying around.

But, I have such motivation on my side because Nancy is taking this challenge with me! She is not indulging in any sweets or extra nibbles all the way up to the taping. And, she is also doing 1 hour workouts EVERY day. Talk about support! She is amazing! She doesn't want to ask me to do anything she would not do, and so, she is doing all of this with me! It really does help when the temptation creeps up to stop at 45 minutes... or just "taste" that cookie or that piece of this or that.

So pray for me my friends! :) I'm going to need it! I really want to achieve my goal, and while I know it is lofty, I firmly believe it is attainable!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Lost 4 pounds this week!!!

Today's weigh in showed a 4lb loss!! Woohoo!!! Overall I have lost 34 pounds, 7 inches in my waist, about 4 inches in my hips, and about 3 inches in my chest!!! I am so excited and almost to my 10% goal. My next milestone will be to reach 50 pounds lost! :) Almost there!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Weigh in tomorrow!

I'm looking forward to weighing in tomorrow, even though I still have that little seed of apprehension. :) My body has been changing so much, not only in size and measurement, but also internally. It's very excited to "see" those changes that are invisible to the naked eye in addition to the obvious changes of losing pounds and inches.

When I first watched myself on the show about a month ago I cried. Not tears of joy, but of sadness and shame. I was so embarrassed by how I looked. About a week ago I watched the show again with my dad (he hadn't seen it yet) and I could see such a difference in myself from then to now. It was actually encouraging to watch it! Not only could I see the difference in my face and body, but I see a difference in my spirit.

I had allowed my weight to defeat me and keep me down. My heart was so burdened by self-loathing and self-hatred that I had lost sight of who I really was. I am daughter of the most high God. I was knit together in my mothers womb, fearfully and wonderfully made. No matter my weight, no matter my circumstances I am lovely and chosen and beautiful. Yes, beautiful.

What saddened me while watching the show a second time was not the fact that I let myself get so big, but that I let myself lose sight of my worth. It was a viscous cycle of eating, guilt, eating, guilt that only got me fatter and sadder.

I don't want to go back there again! I feel so much more alive! I have bad days still and life happens like it always did, but the hope that I had lost is back! I have a joy that I never knew before, even in my "thinner" days. I am doing this, and I am succeeding, and I am worth every bit of it! Whether I slip up and eat a piece of chocolate, or an extra bowl of rice is not what is important. The journey is what is important. The learning that comes from those slip ups is what matters.

And I've been learning so much about food and what it does to your body and how your body uses it and stores it that I've found myself being turned off by some my most favorite foods. I knew trans fat was bad, but oh my goodness! It's disgusting! And sugar is basically only in your system for a short while, but the after effects are very long lasting. So it's been interesting, and I'm looking forward to many more interesting and exciting days ahead full of learning and knowledge. Because knowledge really and truly is power.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Progress Pictures!!

Some of you have been asking for pictures of my progress along the way. I put together a pic of where I started, at 4 weeks, and at 8 weeks. It's weird because I don't see weight loss in the mirror, but I feel it in my clothes (especially those clothes that had been too small and now are loose!) and looking at this collage I was shocked! I can see the difference and that is so cool. :)

Down about 27 pounds in the pic above

with my hubby taking Christmas pics :)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

8 Weeks In!!!

I cannot believe it's been 8 weeks! Time has flown by, and the results are speaking for themselves. In 8 weeks I've lost a total of 30 pounds (down 3.4 lbs this week!) and an amazing 7" in my waist! I'm still working on being intentional in my journey. It's funny to think that eating this way has become "old hat" so to speak, but it's actually becoming second nature to avoid sweets and refined carbs and pick up fruits, veggies and whole grains. I've tried some new foods like spaghetti squash, jicama, flat out, great northern beans and more. It's been quite an adventure! :)

I'm very excited about my goal of running a 5K on January 9 or 10. It's not a formal 5K, just my very own with some family and perhaps some friends there to cheer me on. Friends and family are going to be paying me to run this race! LOL Nancy gave me the best idea (and a great motivator!) for my run, ask my family to pay $5 each for this run. So far I have gotten about $50 pledged toward my run. :) I'm hoping to get up to $100 so that I can buy a couple pair of pants and a couple tops for my new body (my clothes are already loose, and I know that by the 2nd weekend in January they'll be hanging off of me)! I'll be shopping the clearance racks because obviously I don't plan on being in that size for very long either! LOL

Having a goal is quite inspiring. I've downloaded some podcasts for my 5K training which I've really enjoyed. They are called Motion Trax by Deekron. I'm not able to keep pace with most of them YET but I know I will be soon enough. The upbeat tempo is great though, and even though I'm slower than the beat it is a great accompaniment to my walk/runs.

A lot is going on in my life right now and with Christmas around the corner I'm trying to stay on guard and avoid temptations and emotional eating. I'm focusing on staying positive, and doing what I know I need to do to succeed. My body is responding to all of these changes amazingly well and I am so excited that every day I am one step closer to realizing my dream of being a mommy. :)

Monday, December 7, 2009

Day 47

I ran for a full 60 seconds today!!!! I'm so proud of myself. I've been trying to work up to 60 seconds for about a week and a half now. LOL I knew running would not be easy, but my goodness! Even having walked 30 minutes every day since the show aired I am finding it tough to progress to jogging. But I'll get there!

I wanted to talk a little bit tonight about my struggle with infertility... I have not shared much about this with many people, and even the ones I do share it with usually get an abbreviated version. Yesterday was a tough day for me. The pain and sorrow of not being able to get pregnant is always with me, but some days are much easier than others. Since the show I have been joyful with the new found hope I have in knowing that my weight will no longer be what is preventing me from being a mommy.

The holidays are incredibly difficult when you long for a child of your own. Christmas is such a child-like holiday with all of the arts and crafts, caroling, and anticipation of Santa. :) The last few days I have felt that familiar twinge of sadness in knowing that Scott and I would be celebrating yet another Christmas without a child of our own. Everywhere we go there are reminders that our arms are empty...

We were watching "My Sisters Keeper" yesterday and it just hit me. I want to be a mother! I want to create a little one with a piece of me and a piece of Scott. I want to laugh and cry and worry and celebrate and make traditions and do all of those things you do when you have kids. I have begged God to take away this desire if it was not meant to be because I just cannot give it up... I know I was created to be someone's mommy. And my heart is breaking with the pain of not being able to live that purpose... You would think watching a movie about a family going through the unimaginable pain of having a terminally ill child would make me think twice about having a child. LOL But it didn't have that effect on me...

Saturday night Scott and I were watching my beautiful niece Ally and she was just too precious. She was clinging to Scott, sharing dinner with him, playing with him, watching Spongebob with him and just enjoying her fun time with Uncle Scotty. :) Seeing my husband with her was incredible. He was having such a good time teasing her, and playing with her, making her laugh, and cuddling with her. He is going to be such a good Daddy... I want so badly to give him a child of his own to do those things with...

I know that there are so many couples who know exactly what my husband and I are going through, but it is a lonely, painful, and even shameful, experience. I want to break the stigma attached to infertility. I am not ashamed of this experience! It has brought my husband and I closer together. It has allowed God to reveal Himself to me in so many ways. My prayer is that when I am at a healthy weight I will be able to conceive a child, experience pregnancy, give birth, and realize my dream come true... I know that God may have other plans, but I am doing my part by getting healthy--both physically and mentally--and I am trusting Him to do His part. I think that is the hardest part...

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Necklace Info

Someone asked how they could get the necklace Nancy gave me, but it was an anonymous post so I can't reply directly... anyway, you can go to and contact the woman who makes the necklaces. She can create one for you like mine and Nancy's or you can choose many different styles. Her work is beautiful! :)

Days 42-45

Well, I survived my rough patch and while I stayed the same this past weigh in, I came out the other side a little wiser and lot more motivated.

Going through sever PMS for the first time in a long time (due to irregular cycles) was kind of odd. I felt so discouraged and moody, and just plain down. I still did what I was supposed to do -- I ate the good foods, avoided the bad foods, and basically just went through the motions... All week I felt so bloated it was rediculous! I just knew I was going to see a weight gain, and that was making me feel even more discouraged!

Wednesday night (the night before weigh in) I decided to sneak a peek and step on the scale. This was a bad idea for several reasons... First, it was the evening and obviously a different time of day than I usually weigh. Second, I weighed with clothes on, and also usually use the restroom prior to weighing (sorry if TMI!! LOL)... Third, it's just really not a good idea to sneak a peek when you have NO time to do anything to change the number (and I weighed in 7 pounds higher Wednesday night, and basically the saw no change in the number from the previous week on Thursday morning...) I am a glutton for punishment I guess! LOL

The biggest thing I learned though is that it is not enough to just go through the motions. I cannot get complacent and just go with the flow when it comes to my weight loss and health gain. I have to be intentional in my efforts. I have to make every day count, every meal, every workout has to push me closer to my goal.

Another thing I learned is that I'm going to have some crappy days. Days where I just feel down. Nothing has to happen, no tragedy or drama has to take place. Just regular old bad days like everyone else. Only, I never used to let anyone know I had those days... I was always the happy one, always the one lifting every one else's spirits... And rather than talk about my feelings I ate them, good or bad.

I have to allow myself to be human, to be imperfect. I used to feel worthless, and like a failure (and I still struggle with that). But I never used to let anyone know I felt that way... I had to appear to be perfect and unfallible and strong and, well, super human I guess. How conceited is that! Oh my goodness... I was so deceived... But I know that acknowledging it is powerful and empowering. :)

In six weeks I'm going to be running a 5K. Yes, running. :) That is my goal. I've started training and am looking forward to accomplishing that goal and moving onto my next goal of finishing a half marathon in the spring. I know that getting into the physical condition required to run 13.2 miles is just not possible in 4-6 months, but, I will definitely be capable of FINISHING 13.2 miles by jogging and walking.

Pray for me as I train because believe me, I'm pushing myself harder than I ever have before!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Day 41... it's ok to be down

The last few days have been a little rough for me emotionally. I think it has a little to do with hormones, a lot to do with a few sleepless nights, and a little everyday life thrown in the mix. :)

I always hold myself to a higher standard than anyone else... and lately that has certainly been the case. I have overindulged in dinner the past two nights. I woke up this morning feeling fat and bloated. I talked to Nancy and realized that part of my bloated feeling is probably due to all the lentils and the chili I've had the last few nights. LOL

Something else I realized today, thanks to Nancy, is that it is ok to feel down. It's ok to be human. I'm not going to feel fabulous every single day, and that's ok. This is a hard road, and a very long journey. It took a while, but I think the honeymoon phase is over. :)

While it may be ok to feel a bit down at times, it's NOT ok to beat myself up OR to wallow in sadness. I had forgotten to take captive every negative thought, turn it over to my Heavenly Father, and then replace it with a positive thought. Nancy reminded me to laugh, and enjoy my day, and stay positive. I think I got so caught up in everything else that I forgot all of that!

So, yes, today I was not feeling it (or yesterday...), but it's ok. I'll get through it, especially with the love, prayers, and support from Nancy, and all of my friends and family. :)

Monday, November 30, 2009

Days 39-40

Being bored and/or unproductive is not a good thing for me. I had a wonderful holiday week with 5 days off. I was able to take naps, take walks, catch up on the DVR... and go out of my mind! LOL

I decided that having a job is a good thing for me. :) It gives me purpose, and keeps me from focusing on all the petty things I criticize myself for. This vacation was very needed as I was quite stressed out at work, and just needed to decompress. But after a week off, I know that while vacations are necessary, my job is as well. :)

Having goals, a purpose, and accountability are critical to success. At work we have goals to ensure that not only we as individuals are performing successfully, but also to help ensure that the organization as a whole is successful.

I'm finding the same to be true in healthy living. When I have goals, purpose and accountability in my eating and exercise habits I am much more successful. So far my goals have been automating, getting in my water, no sugar, and 30 minutes of walking daily.

In addition to those goals (which are now becoming a part of my every day life and so are not as difficult to achieve) I've decided on a long term goal, with some short term goals to help me reach it. I'm going to run the Disney Princess Half Marathon in March. In order to achieve that goal, I'm adding some jogging spurts to my walk which will gradually increase in length and intensity as I'm able.

Another goal I've got in my head is that I'd like to reach the 50 pound mark by New Years Day. That's about 4 pounds a week from my last weigh in to that weigh in.

Having these goals is helping me to remember that every day counts. Every day I have to stick to my plan, get off my butt and go exercise, avoid those foods that will sabotage my satiation. Every day is an opportunity to get one step closer to my goals.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Day 38

Christmas time is here! :) Scott and I got our tree today, and we decorated the tree and the house for Christmas. I love Christmas! The movies and tv specials, the decorations, the time spent with family. It's my favorite time of year!!! :)

Growing up we didn't have a lot of money, but we were never hungry and we always had amazing Christmases. God blessed us in so many ways with food, gifts, love, and encouragement. When I look back on those years I am amazed at His goodness and provision. He loves us so much, and I am looking forward to celebrating that love, especially this time of the year, as it is a time to celebrate His ultimate gift to us. :)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Day 37

It's interesting how the mind works. For many years I had convinced myself that the reason I couldn't lose weight was because of the PCOS. Like the best lies, this was partly true. PCOS does make a person more prone to gaining weight, and makes it infinitely more difficult to lose weight. This is especially true if you are eating sugar and refined carbs as the PCOS causes insulin resistance.

I had also convinced myself that the only way I would be the size I wanted to be was to have gastric bypass surgery. This scared me to death. I know the surgery can be successful, and has helped many people come from the brink of death to living a healthy life. I just couldn't convince myself that it was the right choice for me.

I told myself even if I did give up sugar and refined carbs and started exercising I would still be unable to lose weight. I half committed to countless diets over the years and would lose a little here and there, but would ultimately end up gaining more than I had lost. Which to me was proof that diets don't work for me. I could justify every bite, every sip, every day that went by without activity...

For the first time I'm proving myself wrong. I used to think that in losing weight and getting fit I would be able to prove to EVERYONE that I was worthwile and that I could do it. What I'm realizing now is that I needed to believe it myself. For so many years I have put myself down, thought I was fat and ugly, unredeemable, worthless...

I was looking at pictures of myself over the last 10-15 years and I was shocked to realize that I looked healthy up until about the time I graduated highschool and into my early 20's. All those years I had convinced myself that I was fat, that I was ENORMOUS. When I looked in the mirror at 10, 13, 16 years old all I saw was a chubby, whale of a girl with no self control and no worth.

It breaks my heart to look back at all those years I wasted being so consumed with worry about what other people thought of me and wallowing in my low self-esteem... Why is it so hard to believe that we are good, that we are worthwile, that we deserve to be happy and are perfectly fine just the way we are?

How it must break the Lord's heart to hear how we talk to ourselves and put ourselves down. We are fearfully and wonderfully made... knit together in our mothers womb... every hair on our head has been counted... Who are we to say that those hairs should be straighter, or curlier, or fuller, or thicker? Who are we to say that we should be taller or shorter? When we do that we are literally telling God that He made a mistake. When we tell ourselves we are worthless we are basically spitting in the face of our Creator.

This is not to say that we should not strive for health and wellness. God wants us to have balance in our lives. When food becomes our obsession we lose focus on who we were created to be. The same is true of money, pride, etc etc... In finding that balance we need to feed our bodies nutritionally satiating foods that fuel it well. We need to exercise and work towards being fit so that our bodies are better able to perform and handle day to day life.

I still struggle with all of this. I still want to eat everything in site. Some days it is so hard not to raid the fridge. Even though the only foods I'll find are good for me, binging even on those healthy foods still causes the same response in my brain as it would if it were pizza, burgers, fries, soda, and desserts. I'm still trying to figure out why I want to eat like that. Some days I can determine the root cause, other days I'm baffled...

I started out calling this the journey of my lifetime not fully appreciating the fact that it literally will take me a lifetime. I know that as I get further and further into the journey my struggles will be less and less, but they will still be there. I will continue to train my mind and body so that I am stronger and better able to resist all the temptations, but the temptations will still be there, and I'm ok with that. :)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!! (Days 35 & 36)

Happy Thanksgiving my friends!! I hope you all had a blessed day with family and/or friends! I had a wonderful time with my family and really enjoyed catching up with everyone. I am so proud of myself for keeping to my few bites. :) I had a bite of ham, a bite of macaroni & cheese, a sip of egg nog and a bite of pumpkin pie. Yes, there a few more bites than I had intended, but all in all it was a very successful day.

Today was also weigh in day and I am down another 3.2 pounds (for a total of 27.2 lost)! Even better than that, I am down another inch in my waist for a total of 6 inches lost in my waist!!

I was a little bummed that I didn't lose more weight because I was about the same weight on Monday when I went to an annual doctor appointment... but, I'm going to focus on the positive fact that I have lost 7.5% of my weight in 5 weeks! And I'm nearly 1/4 of the way to my goal waist measurement. :)

I hope you all enjoy the rest of the weekend and have an opportunity to reflect on the many blessings God has given each of us. No matter what our circumstances, God is good and blesses up with so many things.

I am so thankful for my wonderful husband and family, for my dear, sweet friend Nancy who is walking beside me every day, for the roof over my head, for my job and so many other blessings. :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Day 34

As Thanksgiving is quickly approaching I've been trying to come up with alternatives to some of my favorites so that I can enjoy them without going off my plan. My all time favorite Thanksgiving food is cranberry sauce. Well, obviously the canned version is off limits since it's basically purple sugar gel. LOL But, I bought some fresh whole cranberries, some splenda for baking (not the 1/2 splenda, 1/2 sugar but ALL splenda), an orange, and a cinnamon stick. I'm going to make my own cranberry sauce! :)

My mom is being super supportive, of course, and is having some very yummy foods that I can enjoy. We'll have turkey breast, tons of veggies, sweet potatoes and regular potatoes, and even some sugar free yummies. :)

There will of course be those things that I am choosing to avoid, like macaroni & cheese, ham, rolls, tons of desserts, and eggnog...

Instead of focusing on what I'm not eating, I'm going to enjoy the foods I can eat and I'm also going to sample a couple of the foods I normally would avoid. I am going to have a bite of ham, and I am going to have a sip of eggnog.

You may think these are odd choices. LOL But, they are two things that taste like the holidays to me. Ham is a traditional food for us for Thanksgiving, along with turkey. Store bought egg nog is one of my favorite things about the holidays. It is so delicious and creamy... it just tastes like Christmas to me!

In allowing myself a taste of my two favorites I am hoping to avoid feeling left out, or like I'm missing something. I also am hoping to avoid the longing of wanting all the things I'm choosing not to eat (I keep saying "choosing not to eat" because that to me is more positive than saying I can't eat something).

My ultimate goal for Thanksgiving is to stay on plan, but enjoy a taste of the holidays without completely falling off the wagon. :) I'd love to hear some of your favorites and also some of the modifications you may make so that you can enjoy your favorite food in a healthy way!

Day 33

Yesterday was day 33... unbelievable! I've been reading some of the comments and talking to some friends and I realize that maybe I was a little hard on myself. :) I've been focusing on the fact that I stopped at 1 bite and 1/2 cookie rather than on the fact that I tasted at all.

Also, I've come to realize WHY I was even tempted to begin with. I was confused about why I was so tempted to demolish the whole plate of cookies when just earlier that day I had successfully decorated 24 cupcakes without even wanting a lick of the batter or frosting. I seriously did not want even a taste! lol

I think it had a lot to do with my stress level. I feel very insecure around people I don't know, and until I get to know them that insecurity causes me a great deal of stress. On top of that, my husband and I had to walk down the aisle at the church twice, and then get up on the altar for the baptism. Way too many eyes looking at me!! LOL (you may find that odd since I willingly went on national television, but somehow that was different...)

Anyway, my stress level was super high, and the old me would have reacted with eating enough food for a family of 4! The new me struggled greatly with the old me causing me even more stress because I was mad at myself for wanting to eat! Vicious cycle I tell you...

Today I see how successful I really was in that moment. Instead of beating myself up for supposed failure, I am celebrating the fact that I was able to stay strong, and not completely fall of the wagon! What a victory! Every day I am getting sronger and better able to make healthy choices. I'm not allowing food or my emotions to control me (at least not completely) any longer. And for that, I celebrate!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Day 31-32

Well, it happened. I got through making the cupcakes without a single taste. And then I got to my in-laws for the baptism celebration and I wanted to eat everything in sight! I wanted pizza and cookies, and cupcakes, and cheesecake... all of it! I did ok before leaving for mass and the baptism. I was feeling anxious and emotional and now I see how much of that triggers my desire to eat.

When we got back to the house for dessert, I tried all my tricks for avoiding the sweets... and yet I still had a bite of cheesecake and a half a cookie... ugh... so disappointed in myself!

I'm trying to chalk it up to a learning and growing experience. It could have been WAY worse! LOL I could have had an entire piece of cheesecake along with pizza and cupcakes and a plate of cookies... So while I did slip up, it certainly is not going to stop me from trying and continuing on in my new life. :)

I'm a lot more apprehensive about Thanksgiving now... But I'm going to take it one day at a time and one second at a time if I have to!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thank you!

I just want to thank everyone for the comments. I can't tell you how much your kind words help keep me motivated! Thank you so much for encouraging me and walking alongside me through this journey!!

Amy :)

30 Days into My New Life!! :)

I can't believe it's been 30 days! What an amazing month it's been! When I started this journey 30 days ago I was so fearful of failure, hunger, and yet one more disappointment. I had no idea how I was going to make it work, and I was clueless as to how I was going to change myself in order to lose the weight forever like Nancy so emphatically told me I would.

Well, 30 days later I am completely new woman! I know that the weight I have lost so far is gone for good, and more is going to fall off week after week until I am down to my goal of weight of 165-175. In fact, I am excited to know that by this summer I will be very close to that goal, if not there!

Tomorrow is going to be a challenge for me. My sweet little 3 month old niece Mikayla is being baptized tomorrow evening. My sister-in-law asked me to make cupcakes for the family dinner (about 15 people will be there) because she liked the cupcakes I made for her baby shower... I of course said yes! :) And I am so happy to do it. But I know myself too well. LOL I know that the temptation will be huge and so I am asking for all of your prayers so that I will stay strong and not lick the batter, icing, or "sample" a cupcake. :)

I have a plan to keep my tongue away from the spoon. LOL I'll be having a very delicious piece or two of organic, 70% dark chocolate while I bake the cupcakes, and another piece or two while I ice them. I'm not super worried, but I am trying to be smart and plan ahead. I will not fail due to failing to plan! :)

"New" Old Pants!

So today I had the urge to try on a pair of pants I haven't worn in probably 6-8 months. When I bought them last summer (July of '08) they were a tad snug, but they were $3 and how could I resist?!? LOL I actually bought 2 pair!

Well, slowly but surely they went from being a tad snug, to pretty snug, to obscenely snug! LOL So I stopped wearing them. This morning as I was getting ready (and realizing I did not have many options this morning because I hadn't done laundry the night before) I thought, hmmm.... maybe I'll try those gray pants on just to see...

Well, not only did they fit, they fit better than they did when I bought them! So incredibly amazing! Also, the shirt I put on today is now way to big and today will be the last time I will wear it! (which is kind of a shame because it's failry new and I've only worn it a handful of times lol)

I just wanted to encourage you all that this is possible! If I can do it, anyone can! Seriously!! :)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Today is day 29 and I'm down 24lbs and 5"!!! How crazy is that?!?!? I will be down 50lbs by Christmas and I am so excited. Nancy pointed out that at this rate I will reach my goal weight within one year of bring on the show. By this summer I'll be down to 200! I'm amazed! It's working. I'm doing it and I will be successful and lose this weight FOREVER!! :)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Day 28

Tomorrow is weigh day and once again I find myself a bit apprehensive. Logically I know that I have done what I needed to do to see the number go down. I have stuck to my plan, ate lot's of veggies, drank gallons of water, had no sugar (still), and exercised... So, logically speaking I should have lost weight this week...

Why do I doubt it? Why do I feel that inevitably I'm going to fail? Or at the very least, have a major set back... Why is it so hard for me to believe that I can do this, and am in fact DOING IT.

For one thing, failure in dieting is all I've ever known. It's kinda scary to think that I might actually succeed this time. It's scary to hope that I will be thin, fit, and healthy. But the scariest thing is to hope that when I do lose the weight, AND I WILL, that I will actually be able to get pregnant.

This week I have noticed that fear has become a constant in my life. The Word of God tells us to "Fear not, for He is with us"; "He has not given us a spirit of fear, but of a sound mind". I am fearful of so many things: losing my job, making a mistake, looking stupid, being fat forever, not being a mommy, never living up to my potential, missing out on everything or anything.

I know that a lot of this is because I like to be in control. When I don't let God have control (as if I could ever take it from Him) my only option is fear because how in the world can I possibly be perfect? I can't think of every possibility, I can't make people think a certain way or treat me a certain way, I can't control the economy, and no matter how careful I am or how hard I try I will always make mistakes.

So, even though I know all of this, how can I be so irrational as to continue doing it? I've begun reprogramming my mind towards food (in ways I never thought possible), and now, I must begin reprogramming my mind towards myself, or my weightloss will be pointless.

If I hate myself because I'm fat, and I'm fat because I hate myself losing the weight is not the answer. I need to lose my current mindset and replace it with the love and grace of Christ. For he (or she) that God sets free, is truly free indeed.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Day 27

I can't believe it's been nearly a month on this journey! It's been incredible! Today I got to wear another shirt that used to be too small. It felt so good! I haven't worn it in over a year, and it fit! I'm a little apprehensive about weigh day on Thursday, but I'm trying to stay positive and know that the changes I am seeing in my body will also equal a lower number on the scale. That's easier said than done though. :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Day 26

Apparently God is trying to teach me humility because it is a constant theme these days... My husband and I are down to one car and I'm having to depend on my parents and siblings to pick me up from work because Scott's shift is 12p-9p. I have a ride to work, it's getting home that is the problem.

It drives me crazy to have to ask for help. It affects my work life and of course my personal life. Because I apparently think I am Super Woman and should be able to do anything and everything that comes my way, I end up feeling stressed out and imperfect way too often.

Having to beg a ride from my family (or friends if I'm truly desparate) is quite humiliating to me. That being said, I would not hesitate to help out my family or a friend in the same situation. In fact, I'd tell them they were being silly for thinking the exact same thing I am thinking... But that's usually how it goes for me.

I hold myself to exceedingly high, frankly rediculous, expectations. Expectations I would never put on anyone else. I know I'm not the only person who does this, but why do we do it?!? Why do we expect so much of ourselves and offer so little grace, but when it comes to those we love we are full of grace and understanding?

Something I am learning through this journey is balance. Balance in eating, in thinking, in living. Should I work hard, and do my best, and strive for achieving high expectations? Absolutely. Should I beat myself up and feel like a worthless loser when I need help and have to depend on someone else? ABSOLUTELY NOT!

Have I completely let this sink in to my very core yet? Nah, not yet. LOL But I'm getting there. I'm learning it, and trying to apply it. Grace is there, and I'm just as undeserving as the next person, but God says I don't have to deserve it. He just gives it. And who am I to deny Him?

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Day 25

Today was full of beautiful weather and wonderful quality time with my hubby. :) I had such a great day, in large part because I was able to wear a shirt that used to be WAY too small! It was such a good feeling. But even better than that, my husband, out of the blue, told me how great I look and that he can really tell I'm losing weight and he is so very proud of me. I was on cloud 9!!! :)

I'm hoping I can carry that positive attitude through the week ahead. I tend to be my own worst critic and find that I have a very negative stream of thought toward myself. Nancy gave me some great ideas about how to stop that and turn it into something positive. For example, when I make a mistake or do something I feel was stupid, I will tell myself I am so stupid. What I will do from now on though is say, yes, I made a mistake, but I am not stupid. God made my brain to be able to perfom infinte tasks and complex processes. Or, if I feel huge and disgusting and feel like someone is looking at me funny, I just stop and say, they aren't looking at me because I'm huge, they are looking at my cute purse (or top, or necklace, etc).

It's amazing how powerful our thoughts are and how they can truly influence our self-esteem. Take some time to identify your negative thoughts and try to turn them around.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Day 24 - but to America, Day 1 :)

It's weird to think that to all of America yesterday was the day I decided to change my life, and follow Nancy Schuessler and Dr. Oz's health and wellness plan. In TV-world I'm just beginning my journey. In some ways that is true as I have so far to go, but the reality is I have so very far!

I have lost 19.2 pounds and 4.5 inches from my waist. I have seen so many changes in my body, not just in terms of size, but also in functionality. More importantly, I have seen amazing changes in my mentality and self-esteem. The old me would never EVER talk about my weight, my food choices, my hunger level, or anything that might point out the obvious fact that I am morbidly obese.

The new me has come to realize that speaking out and sharing my thoughts, feelings, and realizations is so empowering! It's like by shining a light on my insecurities they slowly dwindle to nothingness. By baring my soul and innermost fears I am finding I am certainly not the only one feeling this way or going through this. I have found so many kindred spirits, and also suport and accountability partners.

Knowledge truly is powerful. Every day I learn something else about myself, about nutrition, about the reasons why I got here in the first place... It took me 30 years to get to this point, and I'm looking forward to what lies ahead to get me to health and wellness. I know it will take WAY less than 30 years, but it certainly won't be overnight. :)

Planning to Fail, or Failing to Plan

For those of you who watched the show you heard Dr. Oz say that we are not planning to fail when we embard on a weight loss journey, we are failing to plan.

Every other diet I've done has consisted of me feeling restricted, rebellious, and HUNGRY. I was so focused on eating the foods I wanted instead of eating the foods I needed. Of course I love pasta, rice, lots of oil and butter, etc etc etc... Well, if you try to eat those same foods in a 2000 calorie diet you're gonna be left wanting!

Most of you saw the food choices Nancy and Dr. Oz recommend, and that they also recommend automating your meals (having the same meal for breakfast every day, the same lunch every day, and then mix it up at dinner). At first I thought this would be BORING. But surprise surpise I cannot imagine not eating my egg white wrap every day! It has tons of protein and fiber (a fabulous hunger fighting combo). And it's soooo yummy!

The spaghetti squash is a big hit at my house. Having an Italian husband who loves pasta I was a little hesitant to suggest we replace our regular pasta night with a vegetable. lol Surprise number 2, he LOVES it! We have not had pasta in over three weeks and we honestly don't miss it.

I think the biggest change for me has been going without sugar and eliminating white, simple carbs... I honestly didn't think I could do it. I've never been able to before. For the life of me, I could not see that actually happening 100%. But you know what? I did it! I am doing it! I have not had sugar in 24 days and the best part is, I don't crave it!

The best part of this whole thing is that I love the foods I'm eating. I eat them every day, and I never once think to myself, "if I have to eat one more egg white... or carrot... or fill in the blank, I'm going to die." NOT ONCE! I look forward to my meals and snacks. Where once I was constantly thinking about the next thing I would put in my mouth, I am now having to remind myself to eat my snacks.

For those of you reading this who think, yeah... right. all I can say is I have been there. I started there. 364 pounds is a lot of eating. 61.5" waist is a lot of bad choices. I do not naturally want to eat these good for me foods. But I'm learning. If I can do it, you can too! I highly recommend getting Dr. Oz's book YOU: On a Diet. It is full of information and education so that you can learn about calories and fat and sugar and nutrition in general. Knowledge really is power!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Day 23

The show aired today and it was a very interesting experience seeing myself on television. I have watched the show many times, and in some ways it was like watching someone else. And then I realized that it was someone else. I am no longer that person. Three short weeks later I am a completely different person.

It has been a very emotional evening for me. I didn't expect to feel so sad tonight! I thought I'd be celebrating, but instead I was feeling shame and embarrassment. How did I let myself get so out of control? How did I let it go so far? I could not get over how HUGE I looked!

But then, I realized how far I have come since that day. The day we taped the show I knew I had to change, but I had no idea how I was going to do it. I didn't feel any different afterwards. I didn't all of sudden have more will power. But I did have faith. I knew that if I gave this struggle to the Lord He would see me through. The difference this time around is that I LET GO OF CONTROL.

I am not that sad, hopeless woman watching her lifes dream slip away because she couldn't stop eating.

I am strong, and getting healthier day by day. I know that with every day that goes by I get stronger and healthier. I have already come so far, not just in weight and size, but mentally and spiritually as well.

Seeing myself on that day, at my lowest point, hopeless and full of fear, I have found a renewed sense of joy, peace and hope. God is so good, and He has already brought me so far in such a short time.

So while I feel that twinge of sadness, I know that I will never again be the person I was three weeks ago. And three weeks from now I will be even further along in this journey, and three weeks closer to realizing my dream of being a mommy.

I will be a mom. I was meant to be a mom. And I will no longer be an obstacle to my own dreams and goals.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Day 22 -- Beginning Week 4!!

I found out today that the woman who made my beautiful necklace from Nancy is Jennifer Scourfield. I put her website on my links in case anyone wants to order a beautiful necklace for yourself, or for a loved one as a gift for Christmas. :) Her site is

Well, today was my third weigh in and I'm down another 3.4 pounds! Even better, I'm down another inch in my waist for a total of 4 inches lost and 19.2 pounds lost!!! I'm completely amazed...

Nancy gave me a challenge for this week to see how it affects my numbers next weigh in. No eating foods I didn't prepare myself (except salad)! I don't eat out a ton, but probably a few times a week... I'm thinking this is going to be the hardest thing yet! LOL

I'm excited for the show airing tomorrow... but I'm so nervous! My weight, measurements, BMI, etc are going to be shared with all of America. Nancy asked me what I was feeling, and I just realized that I'm feeling embarrassed. I'm embarrassed that I allowed myself to get so big. I'm embarrassed that my waist measurement is the biggest they have ever had on the show (and yes, Dr. Oz actually says that after announcing my measurement).

Going into it I knew that all of this would be shared on national television... but the reality is sinking in now! LOL No turning back now I guess! :)

Here is a link to the preview clip of my show...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Day 21

Tonight I'm watching last nights The Biggest Loser and I find myself identifying with Shay so much. When I saw her determination and courage I was blown away. She is doing things in that gym at 393 pounds that I cannot do yet (though I will be soon :)). When she hit that 100 pound loss mark I just started crying. How incredible is that! What's even more incredible, is that for the first time in my entire life I know that I am going to get there, and beyond. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am going to reach not only 100 pounds lost, but I will reach my goal of losing 200 pounds. I WILL DO IT.

I feel not only joy in this realization, but so much emotion. I have fought my weight for what seems my entire life. My whole identity has been wrapped up in food and fat and insecurity. I have never felt strong, or beautiful, or successful, or worthwile. I have achieved many things in my 30 years, but the one thing that I have failed at time and again is being healthy. I have been enslaved by my weight.

I have allowed myself to lose sight of the fact that no mater what, I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I was bought with a price and am a daughter of the most high God. He loves me so much, no matter what I weigh, or how many success I have, or how many failures I have. I can do nothing to change the love He has for me.

I am beautiful. I am strong. I am successful. I AM WORTHWILE!

God has big plans for me and a huge part of that is this journey I am on right now. I want all women to know that no matter how big or small, you and I have been bought with a price and are called to glorify God in our body. We don't have to match up to the worlds standard of beauty. All we need to focus on is Him.

I'm doing this. I'm three weeks in to the rest of my life. I am going to be thin, and healthy, and one hot sexy woman! :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Day 20!!!

Day 20 is about in the bag... time is flying by! Today I went to the Get Motivated! seminar at the Amway Arena. There were some very inspiring speakers. A lot of what they spoke about is applicable at work (as it was intended) but it also goes so far beyond that. The majority of their messages were focused on being prepared, being a kind and genuinely caring person, and of course, doing your best in everything you do.

So, I began to think about this in terms of living healthy. Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani spoke about preparation and being successful. There is no way to anticipate every possible event or outcome. However, you can prepare for everything you can reasonably anticipate. If you are prepared for everything you anticipate, you will be prepared for the things you coud not anticipate.

In terms of living healthy you cannot always anticipate where you are going to be or what will be available to you in terms of food choices. But, if you prepare and make yourself familiar with all the possible options you can think of, you will most likely be able to make good choices when you are in unfamiliar territory.

Like today, I knew that my food choices were going to be limited. So in order to avoid temptations and hunger I packed foods I knew I could have. I made myself my usual egg white wrap for breakfast. I packed a banana and almonds for a snack, an all natural peanut butter sandwich on whole wheat bread and an apple for lunch, a snack of almonds and another apple to tide me over until I got home for dinner. By doing this I had yummy food choices that I knew were healthy and well within my calorie plan, and I also avoided all of the fried, greasy, diet busting foods they offered (and saved about $30 lol).

Preparation and anticipation are key to success, not only in your professional life, but also in your personal life, especially in terms of your health. :)

Monday, November 9, 2009

Day 19

Well into my third week now I'm feeling like I'm doing it. It's no longer, "I can do this" , but rather, "I'm doing this!" I am successfully tackling this struggle I have faced my entire life. I'm no where near saying, "I've done this" but that's not the goal. My goal is to day by day be able to say, I did my best and I am successful. And I'm doing it!! :)

Something I've been struggling with the past two days that is new (oddly enough) is hunger. I have been getting to lunch feeling satiated, but after lunch until I fall asleep at night I am HUNGRY. And not just that small gnawing hunger you sometimes feel, but I'm talking actual hunger pain. Now, I don't think this is horrible, and I'm not complaining. But it scares me because I don't want to lose control and binge because I'm feeling so hungry.

Nancy and I are going to watch this over the next few days to see if it's just a passing thing, or perhaps I need to add more fiber or change some of my meals/snacks or even the times I'm eating. It's so great having that support!

Having someone to validate what I'm feeling, to have helpful, insightful advice, and to basically tell me it's not in my head is amazing! I don't feel so alone. She truly understands what I am feeling, and there is nothing more incredible than that.

Something else my hunger has been causing me to ponder is world hunger. I'm hungry because I'm choosing to eat less. But there are so many people who are truly hungry. Who have not eaten in days or weeks... That is unfathomable to me. The pain and hopelessness they must feel. I know how cranky I get when I'm ready to eat, I can't imagine what happens to a persons mind when they are literally starving... When I feel hungry I pray for those that are truly hungry. When my stomach hurts and cramps from hunger I get on my knees for the world because I can easily calm my stomach. But they have no answer... and that breaks my heart.

It's all in my head! Right???

Ok, since yesterday I've been battling hunger. Nothing has changed in my diet, I'm eating the same types of foods in the same quantities, at the same times.... AAAHHH!!! So why am I feeling hungry all the time??

I keep hearing this song in my head (to the tune of Frere Jacques):
"I am hungry,
I am hungry!
I want food.
I know I cannot eat now,
but feel like devouring a cow...
What to do?
What to do?"

LOL I thought you all might get a kick out of that! :) Gotta laugh because otherwise I might cry (or worse yet, eat) so there you go. :)

Happy Monday!!!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Day 18 - And it begins :)

Today is day 18 and I find that pretty amazing. LOL 18 days with NO SUGAR!!! But today, day 18, was probably the hardest so far. I am hungry! lol

Usually my breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, snack combo keeps the hunger at bay... not today! I was fine up until lunch time... I think perhaps I waited too long to eat, but we were out and about and lunch just happened to be later than usual... ThenI had my snack a little earlier than I should have, so by dinner I was starving again... ugh. So, I ate my lentil soup, which is normally very filling, and after eating the last spoonful I was still hungry. Are you kidding me??

I fixed myself a huge glass of ice water, and knew that if I didn't distract myself I was going to raid the fridge. So I got my ribbon out and started making bows for my nieces. Mikayla, 3 months old, is being christened on the 21st and I promised to make her a white bow. So I got started on, and finished that.

Then I realized it was snack time! Woohoo!!! Fat free yogurt never tasted so good. Soon after that it was time for my nightly call with Nancy. She called right on schedule, and we talked about last night's rice "incident" as well as how things are going for both of us, etc. That distracted me for a good 30 minutes or so. When I got off the phone with her, my annoying hunger was back so I finished up the brown bow I had started for Allyana, my 16 month old niece.

Now, I'm typing this and still, I feel hungry... I have had sufficient calories for the day, and I have had plenty of water. So now, I'm going to go to bed, and dream of my egg white wrap I'll be having for breakfast.

But, as hard as this day has been, I know that I am succeeding. I didn't binge like I normally would. I didn't get rebelious or pouty like I have during past diets. It's just as hard and annoying to feel so hungry, and I WANT TO EAT but I'm not going to! :)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Day 17

Tonight we tried a new recipe -- stuffed peppers. I'm not a huge fan of peppers, but have gotten more a taste for them since meeting my husband. :) We cooked up some Basmati rice, ground turkey, a chopped onion, garlic, salt and pepper. They were so yummy!

Since starting this journey I have learned that I used to eat a LOT of rice! And it was not healthy or wholesome Basmati or long grain rice either. It was also loaded with butter spread which is obviously loaded with calories and fat... not good.

Well, I have not had rice (of any kind) in the past 17 days until tonight. Mostly because I was literally afraid that I would not be able to stop at one portion. Well, we made the rice mixture to stuff in the peppers and of course there was quite a bit left over. I stood there in my kitchen looking at the bowl of rice. I took a bite, and it was so tasty... and then I took another bite. UGH! So ticked at myself for not putting the rice away rather than leaving the temptation sitting out...

All in all I basically ate a full portion (a half cup) of the rice before I finally realized I am eating away my results! So I put it in the fridge, and went to the living room and drank my water. What is stranger still is the fact that I am still thinking about the yummy rice!! LOL

Normally, I would not be able to talk about the fact that I gave in to temptation. And I certainly would not include it in my food journal. In my mind, to do so would be to say that I failed. But what I am realizing is that I didn't fail. I haven't lost the last 17 days because I had an extra 1/2 cup of rice. Was it a good choice? No, of course not. Did I learn from it? Absolutely!

This journey is going to be a long one, and if I hide things and refuse to learn along the way then I WILL fail. So I'm admitting my mistakes and poor choices because failure is NOT an option! :)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Day 16

Today I did not drink my usual 96 ounces of water during my work day -- and I can feel it! I'm feeling hungry and I know it's because I am missing about 48 ounces my body is used to. LOL So, I'll be drinking up tonight! :)

Looking forward to the weekend. I used to be afraid of the weekend because of all the free time. But now, I don't worry about them. I used to think I would be too tempted to munch and "graze" all day long like I used to. But I'm finding that my habits are changing and I actually look forward to my scheduled meals and snacks. The routine is comforting somehow.

And now I am off to bed. It's been a long week, and I'm ready for some relaxation. :)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Day 15 -- What a day!!! :)

Today was weigh in day and I was a tad apprehensive. But, I took a deep breath, stepped on the scale and... I lost 5.8 pounds!!! :) So exciting! Then, I measured my waist to see if I had lost inches since taping the show, and I have lost 3 inches!!! PTL!! :)

I'm really learning a lot about my self as I go along this journey... I am so super sensitive to criticism of any kind. I also tend to perceive criticism when it's not there (and I do this a lot). I have this inane sense that I am supposed to know everything. And I don't mean in the smart aleck, know it all kind of way, but in the sense that I basically expect myself to be perfect. This causes me a lot of anxiety and stress. As if life isn't stressful enough, I feel it necessary to burden myself with perfectionism... crazy. LOL

It's especially hard because I no longer have my usual comfort to turn to. So now, I am forced to find comfort from where I should have been finding it all along - the Lord. He is my comfort, my strength, my salvation. When I start to freak out at things, I just need to remember that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. And, He puts people in my life to teach me the things I do not know. Because I do not know it all... :)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Day 14 -- 2 weeks down!!

Two weeks on this journey and so much has changed! I am not the same woman I was two weeks ago, or even one week ago for that matter.

I'm a little nervous as tomorrow is weigh in day. I know that I have done amazingly well sticking to my plan, but I know the 2nd week can be rough in terms of weighing in. So I'm crossing my fingers that I'll see a lower number than last week. :)

My Reminder

My beautiful Coach Nancy gave me this necklace on the day we taped the Dr. Oz segment. It is not only a visual reminder of what I am working towards, but also an audible one as it makes a lovely jingling sound whenever I move. :)

The charms say Strength, Overcome, and Health & Wellness. These are my goals as I go on this journey. I am building the:
I need to
my food addiction and
live a life of

One day at a time. :)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Day 13

Two weeks ago tonight I was walking through Times Square with my mom enjoying NYC and looking forward to taping my segment on Dr. Oz the next afternoon. I was also wondering how in the world this was going to work. I knew that by going on the show I was going to have all of America aware of my deepest, darkest insecurity: my weight.

Now you might think, how could it be a "secret" that I was overweight? LOL It's not like I could hide the fact that I am 2.5 times the size I should be. But, I never talked about food. I rarely ate the foods I loved, in the quantities I loved, in front of anyone but my husband and family. Food was my addiction, it was my friend, it was always there.

But that is not the deepest, darkest secret... The most powerful revelation I made on the show is that I am not able to get pregnant because of my weight. I am allowing food to stop me from realizing the one dream I have lived for my entire life. And the worst part is, I knew what I needed to do to achieve that dream and I wasn't doing it.

Food gives me pleasure. I love to eat, and I love to eat big. Two weeks ago I would have been mortified to type those words out. Today I know that I do not need to be ashamed by the fact that I enjoy food. Food is yummy, it's comforting, it's celebratory, and inviting. But, like anything enjoyable, it can be addicting.

I used food not for nourishment and fuel, but for comfort and acceptance. I spend just as much time worrying about what people are going to think of me and whether or not they will accept me just as much as I think about food. I could not disappoint food. I could not be let down by food. It was always there, and it was consistent.

What I'm learning through all of this is that I had made food my idol. It had taken the place of God in my life. By giving up the control of food, and not allowing it to control me, I am finding a peace unlike any I've ever known.

Don't get me wrong, life is still hard and crappy things are happening left and right just like they always have. But instead of turning to food for comfort, I am turning to God. I am turning to my family and friends and allowing people to help me. I am strengthening and deepening my relationship with Christ in ways I never have before. And I'm also allowing Him to work in my life through other people He has put in my life.

By being transparent and sharing my struggles, wants, desires, and downfalls I am not only helping myself, but helping others as well. I am getting the support and freedom I need. And I know that my dreams will come true when I let go, and let God. I can't control what goes on in my body, but I can control what I put into it and how I treat it. My body is a temple and I am finally beginning to see it as such. I want to be a "living sanctuary, pure and holy, tried and true" inside and out.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Day 12 - We have a date!

We got a date! My segment on the Dr. Oz show are supposed to air on Friday, November, 13!! Of course, this is subject to change, and if it does I'll be sure to update everyone! :)

Today went well. I'm finding that my hunger is a lot less as the days go on. I'm enjoying the foods that I'm eating, and I'm noticing some very positive changes in my body as it works to balance out and return to normal after so many years of abuse with over eating and bad food choices.

Nancy and I were talking this evening about why I eat and what triggers me to want to eat. I think a huge part of my problem is my self-esteem. I'm a people pleaser. I want to do everything I can to make sure that there is no conflict and that everyone is happy. What I'm realizing is, that can be a lot of work! So, because i can't really control if someone else is happy or not, I took control where I could. I could eat what I wanted, when I wanted and no one could tell me differently. Just try, and I would eat that much more. So in trying to take control, I became out of control.

I lost all control over food and let it rule my life. Every waking moment was spent thinking about my next meal or snack or dessert. What sounded good? What would satiate me? What I have realized is, it never worked. I'd always have a craving for something, and would eat just about anything I could get my hands on, but I never felt full. I never felt satisfied.

Something I have learned in these last 12 days is I am not in control, God is. Going on the Dr. Oz show was in essence giving over the reigns and saying, "My way isn't working. I'm miserable, and unhealthy, and I'm watching my dream of being a mommy slip further away with every single bite."

Instead of relying on myself to make this plan work, I am relying on my family, friends and my Heavenly Father to get me through. There are so many people praying for me (most of whom I've never met) to succeed that I know I will not fail. It's not me, it's God. He is providing me the strength and support to give up this addiction and gain life.

I know that everyone says this, but I'm telling you the truth. If I can make this change and get on this plan and feel success is not only possible, but is actually going to happen, then anyone can. You just have to give it to Him and take that first scary step. When I got in the car to head to the airport after meeting Nancy and Dr. Oz I was scared out of my mind! All I could think about were all of the failed diets in my past. But every day is a new day. Every day I wake up and make the choice to keep going. And I'm reaping amazing benefits which make it that much easier every day to do it over again.

Forgot to update my chart :)

Week 1: -7.7lbs
21.4% to Goal 1!! :)

So Sore! :)

Well, I am feeling my sculpting workout from yesterday! Oh my goodness. My arms, my sides, my legs... but it feels so good to feel so sore! :)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Day 11

11 days down and things are going great! My roughest day so far was Friday, but this weekend has gone really well. This morning I did a Biggest Loser Sculpting workout, and then we rearranged and cleaned the house which became a second workout. LOL

I got some yummy foods for this week. I'm finding almonds to be a great snack. Also, Wasa crackers with a serving of hummus is delicious! I'm eating vegetables with every meal, as well as throughout the day. With breakfast I add mushrooms and zucchini squash, lunch and dinner I either add broccoli or mixed veggies.

I thought I'd get tired of eating the same foods every day with my automated meals. But I'm actually loving it! I look forward to my breakfast of egg whites, shredded zucchini, mushroom, green onion and a little ketchup on a low calorie, whole grain flat bread wrap. It is so good! Flat Out has become my favorite thing! LOL

Exercise has been my struggle these past few days. I just don't want to do it! But finding a few new workouts has really helped. I'm going to break out some of my old favs, and also look for some new ones. I love yoga, and have a couple videos I want to blow the dust off of. :)

I hope everyone had a safe and happy Halloween weekend! I'm off to watch the Yankee game in a bit. :) Go Yankees!!
So as some of you know I got an iPhone recently. Well, I've officially gone app crazy and have found some really cool apps, even for weight loss! My favorite so far is Lose It. You can track your calories, exercise, and weight. I'm still finding cool things this app can do! Just thought I'd share. :) If any of you have found cool online tools or phone apps send them my way!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Day 10

Today went exceptionally well. I had my yummy automated breakfast, some lentil soup for lunch loaded with veggies, and for dinner Scott and I went to Chipotle. We went to the movies and I had no desire for popcorn! Scott ended up getting some, and it was not even a temptation for me! I think it helped that I had a full tummy from dinner, but pre-Dr. Oz I could have had dinner (which would have included the rice and chips) and then scarfed at least half the large popcorn and a large soda. After a couple of rougher days where I wanted things I shouldn't eat, today was very encouraging. :)

We went shopping tonight for the weeks groceries and it struck me just how expensive it is to eat healthy foods. What they should do is make it super expensive to eat all the bad-for-you foods and make it cheaper to eat healthy! LOL More people would be likely to eat healthy that way! :)

Looking forward to a full day with my honey tomorrow. Working opposite schedules during the week, we really only get to spend quality time together on the weekends. I'm hoping we'll head down to Lake Eola with our dog Maggie. This way we get to spend time to together AND I get my exercise in. :)

Well, I'm off to play with my iPhone. Lol It's been a great distraction from food and hunger which in and of itself is more than making up for the cost! :)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Day 9

I think the "honeymoon" phase is coming to an end. LOL I'm so tired all the time and I don't want to exercise like I did. However, I am not just going to give in to my flesh. I have stuck to my plan, and I will continue to exercise. I know that I will feel energized and pumped again soon. Apparently the second week is one of the hardest, and I think that's true. :)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Day 8

Today went well, but I am feeling so exhausted. When I got home from work, it took everything I had in me to go walk for 30 minutes. I was so close to just laying on the couch for the rest of the night, but I didn't. I changed my clothes, put on my fabulous new tennies from Nancy, and walked for 30 minutes.

Tonight was the first night I actually considered stuffing my face and forgetting all about the plan. And then I stopped, made myself my automated breakfast for dinner (because it seemed more like comfort food lol) and drank some more water.

I fought the temptation to rebel and I won. A huge part of that success is due to all the family and friends I have watching me, praying for me, and standing along side me during this journey. If it wasn't for that accountability, I would be stuffing my face with buttered up white rice right now.

So thank you my friends! Thank you for holding me accountable, and for cheering me on even when I don't want to do it anymore. :)


I lost 7.7 pounds this week! PTL! :) What a great start to a new life!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Day 7

This time last week I was flying home from NYC wondering if I was really going to be able to do this. I had eaten my "last meal" and was terrified of failing and letting everyone down. I was afraid that I couldn't let go of my addiction to food. I was afraid that I was going to be that one person who just couldn't change.

Seven days later I feel like I different person! I am strong, and feeling great. I am battling this food addiction head on. I have family and friends who are standing up along side of me and encouraging me, cheering me on to success.

Tomorrow I weigh in, and I am sooooo excited! I cannot wait to post my results. :)

I was watching the Biggest Loser tonight and as much as I love the show something didn't sit right with me. Their focus is weight loss and health, which is great. They are competing with each other which is a great motivator. But what I was startled by was their reaction to the number on the scale. One of them men lost 5 pounds in a week, and he was disappointed. One of the women lost 4 pounds and she about burst into tears -- not from happiness, but from what appeared to be shame.

I can't say I won't be disappointed if I don't see a drop in the numbers tomorrow. But what I'm going to try to dwell on regardless of what the scale says is how wonderful I feel! I am reconnecting with my Lord and Savior in such a sweet and powerful way. I am taking back control of my body instead of letting fat and sugar and carbs control me.

I am happy. I am excited. I am empowered. To me, these things are so much more significant than what that scale tells me tomorrow. My life is changing so dramatically. I am not the same woman who stepped off that plane last week. And I am so looking forward to all of the changes to come.

I just have to remind myself of all of this tomorrow! LOL

Just one of those days...

This morning started like any other... hit the snooze a few times, showered & brushed my teeth, fixed my automated breakfast (egg white "burrito" on italian herb flat out), did my hair, got dressed, and out the door we went...

Work started like it usually does too. And then, out of no where, SMACK. I felt like I was run over by a freight train. It's been a crazy few weeks for me at work, and I was finally starting to catch up, but apparently some things slipped through the cracks. Well, one thing here, and one thing there is usally no biggie for me. But it was like every 5 minutes something else was going wrong!

My normal reaction to such stress, anxiety and insecurity inducing events--CHOCOLATE! Today, after shedding a couple tears and talking myself out of just packing up and going home, I decided to take a deep breath and just take it one thing at a time. My day has not gotten better in terms of all the crap I am having to deal with, but it has gotten way better in terms of my attitude.

Isn't it funny how Satan tries to steal every ounce of joy from us any way he can? He sure has been hitting me hard this past week, and since he's not winning with food he's attacking from all other angles. But you know what, I actually have peace from that because it means I'm doing something right!

This new journey is bringing me closer and closer to God. On my walks I am listening to my favorite worship music. Every time I feel hungry I pray - for strength, for peace, for my dear friend and coach Nancy while she is cruising the islands :).

I had made food my idol. I thought more about food than I did anything else. And while I still think about food ALL THE TIME, I am beginning to counter that with more healthy thoughts and practices. My mind is fixed more and more on Him, because only through Him am I able to do any of this.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Day 6!

Two days before weigh in I'm super stoked to see how much progress I have made. In preparation of my weigh in, and all of the weigh in's to come, I made a thermometer to track my progress! :) My first goal is to lose 10% of my body weight, which is about 36 pounds. Normally I would never share my actual weight with ANYONE, but since I shared it on the Dr. Oz show I figure all of America will know soon enough! LOL

I cannot wait to update this graph! Looking forward to weighing in is so weird! I weigh myself often, but usually with a sense of dread, not wondering how much I've lost, but how much I've gained. Seeing that number climb every time I stepped on the scale has been so disheartening. I had begun to lose hope that I would ever be a "normal" size. I had accepted the fact that I would be fat the rest of my life. I had convinced myself that I was a failure and could never overcome my food addiction.

Today, six days after meeting the most incredible woman (next to my mommy) that I have ever known, I have reclaimed the hope of being healthy, and better yet, happy. I have such a peace about this. I know that I can do it. I am doing it. By the grace of God I am getting healthier one day at a time. I am seeing success, I am feeling empowered, I am one step closer to defeating this addiction. I am eating to live rather than living to eat.

I still want to eat 24/7. I still struggle every second to make the right food choice and to skip the stuff I know I should not eat. Not having rice and sour cream on my burrito bowl today was so hard. I love rice! I love sour cream! Last night my hubby stopped at McDonald's on his way home from work and I wanted to taste his burger SO BAD. I was literally drooling. But, I walked away. I did not give in. And it felt SO GOOD!

I never ever ever ever thought I would be able to say no to the food I loved and feel good about it. I am not that girl. I am the one who reads stories like this and says, "yeah, right. whatever." But I'm telling you, if I can do it, you CAN DO IT.

Even right now my tummy is saying "FEED ME!!!!" lol but I am not going to do it. I am going to fill up my water bottle, and drink up! :)

Chipotle is in!

One of the things I used to hate about dieting is trying to eat out. This time around I am searching the web for nutritious options at my favorite restaurants, and even some new restaurants to try out.

In my hunt, I found this awesome site where you can calculate the nutritional value of your selection at Chipotle. is a nifty tool that creates a Nutrition Facts label like you would see on an item in the grocery store. I was able to figure out just what I could eat without blowing my plan.

Normally I would choose a chicken burrito bowl (no tortilla) with rice, black beans, tomato, corn, cheese, sour cream, lettuce, and a bag of chips.

This would be a whopping 1335 Calories, 58g Fat, 18g Saturated Fat, 185mg Cholesterol. 2280mg Sodium, 141g Carbs, 22g Fiber, 16g Sugar and 63g Protein... Wow.

My selection today was only slightly different, but provided a much healthier option. I got my chicken burrito bowl, but eliminated the rice, cheese, sour cream and the bag of chips and added fajita veggies.

This was only 435 Calories, 10g Fat, 2g Saturated Fat, 115mg Cholesterol, 16700mg Sodium, 47g Carbs, 15g Fiber, 12g Sugar, 44g Protein. Much, much better!

As I find these nifty options I'll be sure to share them. And I'd love to hear about your good finds at local restaurants and even in home recipes!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Day 5

Well, it's been 5 days now and I'm feeling really good. I'm feeling better physically and also mentally and emotionally. I have my moments (don't we all), but overall I am just in shock over how much I want this. Most diets I try are fraught with rebellion, anger, and bitterness over giving up all the yummy foods I want so badly. Something is different this time. I'm different this time. Just praying that it continues!!!

Waiting for the other shoe to drop...

So it's day 5 of my new journey with Nancy and Dr. Oz and so far it has not been as hard as I always imagined it would be. Maybe it is all of the support I am getting from Nancy, my family, my friends and coworkers... Maybe I was just ready to make the change... Whatever it is, I'm just glad it's not as agonizing and difficult as I had made it out to be.

Don't get me wrong, I still want chocolate and subs and ice cream, and doughnuts, and bagels, and cookies, and etc etc etc. I want to eat and over eat. Food is on my mind 24/7 just like it was before I met Dr. Oz and Nancy and made the decision to really do this. But for some reason, it seems easier. I don't feel alone. I don't feel deprived when I turn down that cookie or popcorn or cake, but rather, I feel empowered because I made the choice. The food does not control me.

So now I'm worried... LOL I'm worried that I'm being naive. In my mind I hear "Of course it's easy, Amy! You've only been doing it for 5 days. You're still riding the high!" What do I do when the high is gone, when the memory of the cameras and lights fade? I know that I will have Nancy to cheer me on every day when we talk. And that is totally encouraging!

I guess I'm just hoping that it doesn't get harder than it already is. Every day I struggle with something. Sometimes it's a little something, other times it's a big something. Everytime it's a food something. LOL

I'm facing my fears of giving up food as a comfort and it's scaring the crap out of me. It has always been my best friend and my worst enemy. I'm learning how to choose the good foods, the fuel I need for my body to work at its best. I'm even comfortable talking about food with other people -- a real first!

I started this post because I was feeling apprehensive, and now, as I finish my stream of thought, I realize that I am feeling confident. I can do this! I will do this! Wow, my whole perspective has shifted. My focus is not on waiting for failure, it is now on enjoying my success. That is awesome! :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Day 4

Today was a great day. Scott and I did the 5k Race for the Cure, and then we relaxed before heading out to the movies. I was a bit apprehensive about going to the movie theater. I love buttered popcorn, and Scott and I usually share a huge bucket and each get a soda. Needless to say, the buttered popcorn is not exactly on my plan. LOL Rather than risk being tempted empty handed, I prepared a zip loc bag of grapes to take with me and I also drank a huge glass of ice water.

When we got to the theater my mouth was watering over the delicious smell of the popcorn. I stood in line with Scott as he got a popcorn and Mr. Pibb and I ordered my Diet Coke. As we walked away from the concession stand I was already trying to rationalize how just a few bites couldn't hurt that much. We sat down and I realized that if I even took one handful of that delicious buttery goodness I would not be able to stop. I would most likely consume half the tub of popcorn if I took even a single pop.... So, I opened up my grapes, took a few gulps of my soda and began snacking on my healthy alternative.

By the time I finished my grapes my craving for popcorn was gone! Amy-1 :: Evil Popcorn-0!

Every day this new lifestyle gets easier in some ways and harder in others. I'm not typically a rebellious person by nature, but there are moments in every day (and yes, it's only day 4) where I just want to throw myself on the floor and pound my feet and fists until I get what I want -- food, sugar, etc.

This is the 4th day I have not had sugar. But the real miracle is, I'm not craving it too badly. I think the fruit is helping with that. I really just want to eat, eat, and eat some more. I am still trying to figure out why that is. Why can't I just eat what is an acceptable amount of food? Why do I want to have bread, and salad, and crackers, and peanut butter, and on and on? Why do I not ever feel satisfied?

In my mind I know that I am consuming more than enough calories to sustain my body. I am not starving myself, and am in fact eating foods that should technically make me feel fuller than the crap I used to eat. And yet, I still feel hungry...

I will not let this get the better of me though. So far I have not strayed... but I know that day will come, and probably soon. Right now I'm just trying to make it one day at a time... one hour at a time...

We Did It!!!

Scott and I walked the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5k this morning -- and we did not finish last! LOL That was my goal. :) I'm a little sore, and my feet hurt a little, but overall I actually feel great! I also have an amazing sense of accomplishment. I was able to walk 3.1 miles without feeling like I was going to die. My goal for next years race is to do the same one - the fun run/walk - but jog it rather than walk. :)

It was incredible to see all of the survivors. So many women, and their families, were running in celebration of surviving breast cancer. It was also heartbreaking to see all of the placards in memory of those who lost the battle and died from breast cancer. I got a little emotional as we passed all the yard signs honoring those brave women.

Scott's dear friend Dee Dee survived breast cancer, but is still battling cancer as it spread. She was only given a few months to live. We walked with a placard on our backs with her name on it celebrating her survival! It made the walk that much more memorable for both of us. Hi co-worker Patricia is also a survivor, as well as a friend of my family, Doris. It's incredible to see how many people this effects.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Day 3 -- Surviving the Weekend

After a tough day yesterday I was worried about all the free time I would have today. But, I did it! I made it through a day in which I spent the majority of the day at home, on my own. With free reign of the kitchen and pantry I was not even tempted to cheat once. I know that this is great, but I also am not naive enough to think that next week or the week after, or the month after, or even tomorrow will be as easy. What I do know, is that I made it through today and I am going to rejoice in that success. :)

Tomorrow is the Race for the Cure 5k walk. Scott and I are walking it together and I am so excited! :) Good night all! More updates to come.

Here we go!

Today is a true test of this new journey I am on. I'm off today and spending most of the day at home. While there is no sugar or "evil" foods in my house, there will be that temptation to graze as I USED to do. :)

I feel stronger today than I did yesterday though, and I think it's because I'm not as tired as I was yesterday. It's hard to be strong when you're exhausted! :) I'm also excited about tomorrow because I'll be walking in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure 5K Fun Run/Walk. I've done a 5K before, but I'm obviously in worse shape now than I was then. What an accomplishment it will be though! :)

I'm just finishing up breakfast because I slept until 10am... So I'll have to figure out the timing for snacks and lunch and dinner, but hey, I'm up for it! :) Happy Saturday everyone!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Day 2

So, today was a little rougher for me. I know, day 2 and I'm already struggling? But it was a good struggle, if that makes sense. I love to eat, especially when I'm stressed. And lately there have been some super stressful events in my life.

To top it off, those darn Godiva cookies sat out within walking distance ALL DAY. The best part of today was that I proved I could do it. I did not give in to temptation. I reminded myself why I am doing this. I talked to Nancy, and realized I'm not alone! We all face these temptations every day; sometimes several times a day. Some days we will stare those cookies down and be triumphant. Other days, we may indulge.

What I am trying to remind myself of is the fact that I am not perfect. I am fearfully and wonderfully made to be just who God created me to be. But until I reach Heaven and get be with my Jesus, I will face struggles and temptations, wins and losses, good days and bad.

With Christ all things are possible. Not just some, but ALL. I can do this. Even when I feel like I can't, I just have to rely on Him and I'll make it through.

Death by Chocolate

Oh my gosh... I'm at work, just finishing up my morning snack and I walk across the room to find Godiva cookies! UGH!! LOL They are so delicious and the chocolate oh so good (as I well know from past experience)...

But, I will be strong, and enjoy my banana and 12 almonds, knowing that by skipping the chocolate I am one step closer to my goal -- being a mommy. :)

I will overcome this!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Day 1

Today marks Day 1 of my journey to lose weight and get my health back. Getting to meet Dr. Oz was beyond incredible. He is so encouraging, so down to earth, and just sweet as can be! The best part of bein on the show was getting to meet Nancy Schuessler, my inspiration for all of this. She is amazing!! I know that with her and Dr. Oz by my side I can be succesful. I can do this!

I walked for 30 minutes tonight with my little pomeranian-chihuahua Maggie. It was harder than I thought it would be. In fact, I wanted to give up after 15 minutes. But, I pressed on. And even though I was achy afterward, it felt so good! I did it! I pushed on, I didn't give up, and I succeeded.

Having a Coach is amazing. I am not alone in this. Nancy is so encouraging, and she just gets it. She has been there. She knows what I'm feeling before I can come up with the words to describe it. She is a soul sister, and I cherish and love her already. :)

This is going to be a rough, long, challenging journey. I won a few battles today, but the war rages on. But what is different this time, is that I feel such a peace. I know that it's going to be hard. This is most likely the hardest thing I will ever do in my life. But that will only make the victory of overcoming food that much sweeter.

I'm learning so much, even in this short time, that it is a bit overwhelming. I'm jotting down notes and journaling, trying to keep everything straight. I know my biggest battle will be giving myself grace when I need it, and not giving up when I slip up.

I'm in this for the long haul, and I feel as thought I finally have all of the support and tools I need to be successful. A huge thank you to Dr. Oz and his staff for everything they have done. And to Nancy Schuessler, my beautiful, inspiring, amazing Coach and sister along this journey, I am forever grateful and indebted to you for literally saving my life.

More to come... :)