Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

Fitness fitness fitness. I managed to lose and keep 60 whopping pounds off this year. 2013 will be the year of the inner athlete reappearance. I want to focus my blog on my fitness goals and food. I hope you enjoy following me this year.

Monday, August 27, 2012

My blood drive.

So I think I've pretty much indicated that this has been the year of change for me.  I decided last year when I got an email in my inbox for blood donors needed that I was going to conquer my fear.  I have made an entire year now with donating on a schedule of every 8 weeks.  My next donation will make a gallon.  This is a huge feat for me and I will now pat myself on my back.  Ahh that felt great.  I am deathly afraid of needles and my veins are not an easy stick.  The employees at our local blood bank are wonderful.  They know me now so they are very gentle and baby me lol.  Yes, I like to be babied when there is needles involved.  Donating takes an hour tops and there are many benefits to it.  Here are 6 reasons to donate blood (www.aarp.org).

1.  The need is Great!!  Cancer patients are among the most common recipients of blood tranfusions  I think we all know someone who has been affected by cancer.

2.  You can donate. 

3. Older people can give blood more comfortably

4.  You may need blood at some time.  25% of us will need blood at least one time in our life.

5.  You get a FREE mini-physical.  You get your vitals taken. 

This is my recent screening card.  It's cool, I collect them on my desk at work.  Gives me that little sense of pride during the day when I see the stack of them sitting there. 

6.  It's an act of kindness and compassion.  One donation can save the lives of up to 3 people.  :)

If I can do this, anyone can.  I think about my children when fear creeps into my head.  If anything were ever to happen to those little faces or to my family and there was a need for a transfusion or any kind of blood, I know I have done my part and continue to do my part.  It's a lunch hour, and they will give you all the juice and snacks you want.  So get out there and do this! 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

some more honesty...

So, in this 8 month journey I have been on...I have come to some very good conclusions.  The very first and most important one is rely solely on yourself.  If you want to get healthy, you have to cover the many facets of your life that make you unhappy.  You just don't wake up fat, sad, and miserable.  It happens over time and if you don't deal with stuff it builds and builds up to this point where you look in the mirror and don't like the person you see or you don't like what you see.  Either or, it's not a good spot to be. 

For me personally, I have some skeletons in my closet that have been hiding for a very long time and I decided it was time to drag them out and well.... beat the shit out of them.  :)  I also have student loan debt and financial burdens of kids and then that ugly 'b' word again.  Budget...I hate it but I'm working on it.  Marriage and communication also falls into that entire emotional health bit and it takes a concentrated effort to work on all these areas.  It doesn't come easy and sometimes being an adult and making adult decisions is hard.  I've avoided this realizing I was an adult bit for a long time (at least in my head).  Now that I am growing up (emotionally), I see that the denial process has created a big mess along the way.  WIP  Work In Progress. 

A huge part of my emotional health became my body.  I use to be an athlete, and years of neglect and putting myself and my needs at the bottom of my list have wrecked havoc.  I ran and skiied competitively for years, and enjoyed it.  My saving grace is I continued to exercise my entire life, I just didn't take care of myself and let my body go mainly with the poison and poor food choices I put into it.  The muscles were still trained so once I set my mind to it, it hasn't been too terrible finding my inner athlete.  Not too long ago, I had a friend tell me I wasn't an athlete...it really pissed me off.  Looking in the mirror at the time, I could see where that came from....I still didn't like the comment and I will never be told that again without standing up for myself.  It's called taking control of my life back. 

Rely on yourself.  I have learned this lesson time and time again.  Only you can be accountable for you.  The food choices you make, the drinks you drink and the exercise you do or do not do is up to you!!!  Only you can take care of you when it comes to this part.  People tell me they are inspired by my posts and ask what I do.....I can tell you exactly what I ate and what exercises I do...easy.  You have to make that decision to eat right and exercise and then YOU have to decide what is going to work for your life.  I have people that want to work out with me, I would love the company, BUT.....I will not change my routine for people anymore.  I do what I do that works for me, if you want to join me at the gym at 4:30am...see you there!  If not, don't ask me to change my time up to meet you and then cancel on me...hahaha not falling for that again.  Workout buddies are great and the accountability process it creates is awesome, but you have to make that decision that even if your friend isn't going to make it, it will not be your excuse for not going and plow forward solo.  It is a mind set that you have to be really willing to set and stick to.

What has worked for me.  I love my iphone app.....  LOSEIT
http://www.loseit.com/  (it's FREE) This application is great for accountability and tracking your food intake. (did I mention it's FREE) When you are first trying to change your lifestyle and lose, you have to create a calorie deficit to drop pounds.  It's very simple math, however this app will send you reminders and makes it very easy to do. 

This is a snapshot of the app on my phone.  I mainly use it now to track my exercise, but I will be adding my food back in shortly.  This app is very user friendly and you can use it on your computer as well. 

The hardest part of this journey is being nice to myself.  I have for my entire life not liked the person in the mirror.  No matter how much weight I lose or how I fix my hair and makeup it doesn't change this negative fact.  This can only change by helping myself.  I go to counseling and I am very proud of myself for doing so.  You should never be too afraid to ask for help when you need it.  Life is much easier with help in the areas you need help.  Do you put yourself down in your mind?  I do.  I do a lot.  I tell myself I am ugly and fat and there is a list of other things I use to say daily to myself when things were not going right.  Practice complimenting yourself and when I work out and I'm sweating and have those plugs in my ears....I'm talking nice to myself in my head.  I say I am an athlete, I am beautiful, and my body looks great.  I envision what my goals are and say those things to myself like I believe them to be the truth.  I hope this part helps someone else because I think it's a very important piece of the puzzle.  You cannot go through the motions and not believe in yourself or you are setting yourself up for failure.  Talk nice, be positive and good things will come. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Injuries suck.

I have been struggling over the past few weeks with a bad injury.  It really reared its ugly head to the point of me limping around. It is so frustrating to get an injury when I have such agressive goals.  So, I went to a specialist about a month ago and was diagnosed with plantar fasciitis (awesome).  A sure fire sign of this injury is when you get out of bed and put your weight on your foot, you almost fall over from the pain.   A big huge BOO to this.  So I've been dealing with this very lightly.  I stopped running (almost) and switched to incline brisk walking and it really didn't help the pain factor.  I took two weeks off from exercising to see if that helped, no it didn't just made me feel like crap.  So I got back on the the kick full force last week and yesterday my foot hurt so bad it was burning when I was sitting at my desk.  It felt like a million knives were stabbing at my heel.  I made an appointment and went in and had the doctor take a look.  She ordered x-rays......

 This lovely picture shows a nice heel spur.  I thought well that explains all my pain.  NOPE I WAS WRONG.  I went to the ortho specialist at this office and it turns out that I have plantar fasciitis.  Yep, heel spur is just a calcium growth and the real problem is what the specialist told me a while back.  The underlying problem with this entire injury is the owner of the foot.  :(  Yes I fail at moderation big time.  I was told that I can continue to run, jump, exercise and will not break anything or hurt it worse...I just won't ever get better.  This really sucks.  So, I will have to come up with some new exercise routines until I can shake this injury.  Today, I biked for an hour and have a sore butt and didn't feel gratified with my workout because I wasn't dying at the end.  It's all in my head obviously so I will work it out.  My advice is to listen to your body people, don't do what I do and ignore the pain.

On to bigger and better things.....this picture featured here was a nice surprise from my husband.  He recycled an entire house of cedar siding.  This was a table he made for me out of that siding.  It was inspired by some of the Pinterest pictures that I send to him and ask him to build for me....isn't it cool???  I am feeling the love with this project of his.  :)

Scott and I put urethane on it this weekend and it gave it the aged rustic look that I was wanting.  I absolutely love it and it goes so well with my vision. 

He also made me a small table.....

This is the one that he built to go behind the couch but for now I like it as a wall table.  So talented.

I don't have anything else to add.  Have a good week. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Salmon Salmon Salmon

Chitina, view of the silty river

Every summer we gear up fishing season.  We live approximately 6 hours (driving with kids) away from Chitina and the mighty Copper river.  This is the spot to get the world famous and also best salmon in the world.  We attempt to get our limit of reds aka Sockeye every year.  Chitina is one of the many breath taking places in Alaska.  It is known for it's beauty and deadly fishing grounds.  There are several ways you can fish some are easy fun, and the others present a great challenge.  I prefer to drink beer in a wind shelter (because it's windy and very silty sandy) while watching the fish wheel go around and around throwing fish into the basket.  The real danger in using the fish wheel is walking out to the wheel to retrieve the fish (not recommended after beer).This way of fishing is well saught out and you have to be in the know usually to get onto a wheel.  It is very hit and miss for me and never a sure deal.  The second easiest way to catch your fish is with a dipnet in a back eddie tied off in a nice riverboat with a skilled captain.  If the fish are running you are catching.  You can also sweep from the boat with a dipnet.  Sweeping is a little more technical and you risk losing your net on the rocks.  You essentially troll while dragging the net.  The most common way of fishing is dipnetting off a cliff.  Some of the best fishing holes you have to scale a rock wall with a huge dipnet and tie off with a rope.  If you fall into the Copper river, chances are you are not coming back out.  We take four wheelers out the trail and walk down to the river and hopefully catch fish and then pack them back up the mountain.  It's worth every bit of sweat and exursion.

This trail gets pretty hairy but if you can make and have the determination to fish it's FUN.  This is my boys posing for mom.  This is where the DMV closes off the trail for vehicles.
The mighty Copper River from my view as I gave up dipnetting.  :)
This is a picture of my brother in law dipnetting.  He was gracious enough to take me out night netting with him while my husband watched the kiddos at camp.  You can see this is no place for chitlins.  The green rope is tying off the net so he doesn't lose it in the deadly current.  July - 2012

This picture is from August when my husband bombed down and back in one day.  He literally fished for 5 hours and caught his limit of 40.

Okay, this next picture is me cleaning the fish in the backyard.  Call me crazy...haha....but I LOVE to clean salmon.  I am very good at it and I just love salmon.

A close up of operation Sockeye....

This cooler took two of us to lift.  This is 110 pounds of pure awesome.  My mouth just waters looking at this picture

Sushi?  Yes we did.  My hubby grabbed some soy sauce and diced up some fresh salmon for us to snack on as a wonderful treat while I was busting a move on those bad boys.  This is sushi Alaskan Native style.

My husband was pretty proud of this fillet.  I mean come on, wouldn't you be?  It's pretty spectacular!

The big huge challenge.............I had two of these going and I've used these for the last two summers and they overheat and they are a real pain in the @ss!!!   I think my face flushes just looking at this picture.

The solution!  That same brother in law I featured earlier became my hero in about 37 seconds after the first use of this monster.  This food saver I think he said was $750.00.  Worth every darn penny in my opinion.  In fact, I'm pining for one.  :)  Then there is always that well if he has one we can use...why buy one in the back of my mind.  At any rate, if you process a lot of meat this is the way to go.  It saved my life that night.

6 hours after I started filleting my first fish my end result was 110lbs of packaged pure awesomeness.

But no I wasn't done yet. 

These fish were exceptionally large and had a lot of meat on the back bone still so I canned a lot of it for sandwiches and spreads this winter...doesn't this look delightful??? mmm mmm mmmm

Well, operation Sockeye took me 9 hours in total.  I finished up around 12:30 am and I loved almost every minute of it.  I also made some blueberry jam in that time I was waiting on the pressure cooker.  It was a good harvest. 

Nothing beats this on the dinner table...nothing.   My reward. 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Outdoor Family Time

Whirlwind Life!  We have been so busy I’ve neglected my new commitment to blog.  Ooopsy. Last week, I was able to stick to my Pump workouts at lunch and my morning workouts.  I haven’t lost any weight but I don’t expect to right now doing the lifting.  I love this Pump workout because I am seeing tone in my abs and my arms.  It’s AWESOME.  

Last weekend, we had some wonderful family times.  Play It Again Sports was having a sidewalk sale and we picked up a child Kayak for my 8 year old Cody for a whopping $80.00.  We live on the river in town so floating is something we do all summer and I got a taste of kayaking this year and I love it.  Saturday we took the boys floating with just our family unit and it was wonderful.  We finished out the day at a BBQ with some of our best friends. 

Cody in his new kayak, maiden voyage!

Sunday we went out to one of my favorite spots, Angel Rocks.  I have loved hiking out there since I was in high school (over 20 years!!).  I usually try to go out there at least 3 times a year and I’ve slacked there too.  I have to say 50+ pounds heavier last year and the baby at 30lbs I about died hiking to the top.  This year, much lighter and Big D at just over 40 pounds was much easier on me.  Mind you, I was still a hot mess when I got to the top and I did have to stop to calm my heart down on the way up, but I made it and I felt great.  We were pleasantly surprised at the caves to find a plethora of blueberries!  I unloaded the D and we had brought containers with us and we picked berries for about an hour.  I welcomed this break and felt refreshed and my mind rested after just relaxing in nature doing something I love with my family.   We left with a gallon of berries.  Saweet!!  After eating lunch together at the bottom, we loaded up and headed on up the road to Chena Hot Springs.  Google this place, it’s amazing.  We swam with the kids and the adults took turns soaking in the natural outdoor hot springs. I might add the soak was appreciated after hiking 3 miles up and down a mountain with the D on my back! What a fabulous day.  I love it when I get the natural therapy of God’s creation surrounded by my family.  This is the best part of living in Alaska.  It really does surprise me that people live oblivious to their majestic surroundings up here.

The D and I on my ascent up to the caves at Angel Rocks

My family unit on top of the world!

My silly boys outside the caves


That's a gallon of berries ready to go in the freezer

Scott, Christopher and Dalton swimming after our hike

Now back to the Kayaking….we have two boys very close in age which means I’m gonna talk about Christopher the middle child syndrome kid.  He absolutely wanted a kayak after he saw how his brother navigated the river.  I predicted this and made arrangements with his auntie and uncle to buy him one before the sidewalk sale ended for his birthday.  He didn’t know this and on the way home from the Hot Springs started his whining and crying bit about how he was never going to get a kayak.  His dad told him to think positive and maybe there would be one when we got home.  

Elated!  His Auntie Kim and Uncle Jesse are his heros right now. 

So, Scott took the boys out Tuesday evening on Christopher’s maiden voyage.  This is where I will end this update.  We are river rats…but at least we are making the best of our short summers here in the Banks.  J  Food updates to come soon with pictures. 

Christopher navigating the mighty Chena River on his maiden voyage.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Morning Bliss.

So, I actually woke up at 4am ready to go this morning which is 15 minutes earlier then what I set my alarm for. I busted it pretty good at the gym. I've cut back on my evening workouts because I just don't feel like it at night right now. Summer is so short here. I'm going to show you a picture of me all sweaty after a typical 1100+ calorie burning morning. Do I enjoy these pictures? NO! Why am I posting them to cyberspace you may ask...because I want you to see that I am just an average person with a goal. Yes, I earned every stitch of that T-shirt I'm sporting, and I wear it with pride. So here goes, me in all my morning glory! Have a great day, keep in mind it's all in your head. Anyone can do it if you set your mind to it!