“You Can’t Accomplish Anything Without The Possibility Of Failure”

An Awesome Documentary Got Me Questioning How Hard I’m Willing To Push Myself – Mentally, Physically & Emotionally – To Achieve What I Want.

This weekend I spent some time looking for upcoming local races, both 5 and 10Ks. I’m always way more consistent in training when I have a deadline I’m working towards. That’s when I came across the most amazing race I’ve never heard of – The Barkley Marathon.

I learned about it via a documentary that’s currently on Netflix – The Barkley Marathons: The Race That Eats Its Young. It is an amazing story that spotlights the quirky traditions and oddball personalities surrounding this race.

But what I loved most happened after watching the movie. More on that below. But first, What is the Barkley?

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Microwave Experiment Update


A relic of our fat past. My 2 week test of life without a microwave is now well into its 3rd month.

Back in December, while trying to make more counter space in my tiny kitchen, I packed up my microwave and lugged it to the basement. The plan was to try going without it for two weeks. A simple test to see how much I really rely on it. Well here we are, nearly half way through March and that microwave is still in the basement.

Do I miss it?


Microwaving zaps food of its flavor…but hey it’s more convenient, right?  But if it is more convenient does that mean you’re eating more than you need?

I know our food consumption dropped without it, especially for my husband. It’s too easy to grab something out of the fridge, nuke it, and chow down.

The hubby told me he now thinks about whether he’s really hungry before snacking on leftovers. Why? Eating leftovers now means pre-heating the oven, getting out an oven-safe dish, and waiting  for the food to warm up.

Sure it’s not as convenient as zapping the food, but is it really that much of an inconvenience? I don’t know if there are any scientific studies on this, but I wonder if  households with heavily-used microwaves are more overweight than those households that go without. Something to consider when you think about all the microwavable “foods” are sold as a way to lose weight.

Because that convenience is gone, my husband now has time to think about whether he really is hungry or just bored. That’s a good thing.

I think it is safe to say our love affair with the microwave is over.

Weight Loss & Wedding Rings

new ring

A new ring to rule them all…yep I got my new wedding band for Valentine’s and lost nearly 4 sizes in the process. Yay!

My husband surprised me on Valentine’s Day with a new wedding band. I haven’t worn my wedding band or engagement ring since April 2013. That’s when I tried to dry my hands by frantically waiving them in the air the rings flew off my finger. Thankfully I was home at the time and found them.

After that incident, I put my rings up for safekeeping thinking I can resize them once I hit goal. Turns out, resizing was out of the question due to how the stones were set within the band. Grrrr!

So nearly 3 years later, I’m down 145 pounds and have 30 more to go, but the husband thought enough time passed and I needed a new wedding band.

I settled on a band similar to the original — sapphires and diamonds (stones not embedded into the band) but with white instead of yellow gold. The big shock came when measuring my finger. I went from a size 10-1/2 to 6-3/4.

Yikes! I was so busy focusing on losing weight in the obvious places — stomach, thighs, bat wings arms, and butt — I never expected fat loss from my hands.

But I’m not complaining. All weight loss victories are welcome.



Cutting Dairy, Fasting Lead to 5+ Lbs. Drop

after thanksgiving

After my post-Thanksgiving weight gain, I got back to the basics that helped me lose 140 lbs. Plus cutting back on dairy and some needed fasting improved not just the number on the scale, but my energy level and mental clarity.

By the time my 2 Thanksgivings (with lots of wine)  ended, I gained 4 pounds. Ugh! When I stepped on the scale November 28, I temporarily left the 180s, weighing in at 193.2 lbs.

Oh hell no!

Since then I’ve redoubled efforts on my healthy eating habits – menu planning, eating only when hungry, chopping and prepping the meals in advance, minimizing eating out, and tracking everything I eat. Oh and drinking water…lots of water.

Yep, I got back to basics. Read More

Facelift Friday Fun

I’ve done lots of before and after photos, but none really focused on how my face changed since going low carb. Wow! I never realized by head was that fat chunky.

facelift friday oct 2What the photo doesn’t capture? How my skin improved after going low carb. No more breakouts or dry, flaky skin. That added bonus: I’m constantly told by family, friends and my doctor that I look much younger. Granted I take what the hubby and friends say with a grain of salt, but not my doctor!

Reversing MS By Eating Low Carb?

Her TEDx Talk went viral for good reason. Dr. Terry Wahls describes how changing her diet reversed her MS symptoms and got her out of a wheelchair.

Her TEDx Talk went viral for good reason. Dr. Terry Wahls describes how changing her diet reversed her MS symptoms and got her out of a wheelchair.

Below is an amazing video on the power of eating healthy. Dr. Terry Wahls, a clinical professor of medicine at the University of Iowa, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in 2000. By 2003 she was in a wheelchair. Through her own research, and using herself as a guinea pig, she redesigned her diet using Paleo principles (yes, Paleo is low carb!) to get the essential nutrients for her brain.

The result? Within a year of starting her new diet, she got out of her wheelchair, stopped walking with a cane, and could eventually go on an 18-mile bike tour.

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Eating Right & Exercise Paid Off This Weekend

We took on a big project this weekend -- ripping out our old sod.  There was a clear difference in between me and the husband's fitness levels.

We took on a big project this weekend — ripping out our old sod. There was a clear difference between me and the husband’s fitness levels.

Last weekend the hubby and I spent quality time together ripping apart our backyard. Thanks to our dogs, half of our lawn died. The other half succumbed to  crabgrass. It was time for some old fashion, back-breaking DIY work — digging up the old sod and reseeding the lawn.

Initially my plan was simply to replace the brown spots with grass seed and deal with the crabgrass in the fall. It seemed manageable.

Well that wasn’t good enough for the hubby. Nope. He wanted to reseed the entire backyard.

“Since you’re more fit and healthy, it would be a snap for us,” he assured me.

Within 15 minutes of starting this expanded DIY project, I realized that “us” meant “me.”

All That Healthy Living Paid Off
It was an ambitious project. One that wasn’t possible 3 years ago. There was no way I could do that much physical labor (at project’s end we moved more than 2,000 pounds of sod!). Back then I was too heavy to do much of anything without being in pain or getting winded after a couple of minutes.

Now I’m like that annoying Energizer Bunny.  I’ve got the energy, strength and stamina to keep going and going, regardless of the activity.

My hubby's favorite workout location.

My hubby’s favorite workout location. Raising that foot-rest is his own 2-second, full body workout.

On the other hand, my husband has strength but cardio isn’t his strong suit. You see he hasn’t worked out in more than a year. The bulk of his exercise happens as he pushes back into his La-Z-Boy to raise the foot rest.

From the get-go, my husband had a difficult time with the work. Five minutes into the project, he needed a break. Within minutes of him starting back up, I could hear his very labored breathing.

Truth is I got a little annoyed with him. My worrying about him slowed me down.  So I did the only thing I could do — I forced him into a long “timeout” (a.k.a., sitting in his La-Z-Boy with a fan pointed at him).

At that point, I took over. I was a machine – stopping only for water, a light lunch, and the drives to the county dump. Amazed, the hubby grudgingly admitted I put him to shame by doing 90% of the work.

Lessons Learned
I’m a lot stronger and tougher than I realized. When my husband suggested doing the yard I thought he was nuts. I knew how much work it would take. But once I started, my doubts were gone.

I think if I only focused on losing weight and ignored building strength, no way I’d agree to take on this project. Heck, I’d probably hire someone to do it for us.

So, I chosen my path wisely.

As for my husband, well…he asked that I slap him the next time he suggested a DIY project.

Weight Loss True Grit

got gritIf you are trying to lose weight, you need to ask yourself if you have the “grit” to do it. Grit is what sets apart the truly successful from the rest of us. I’ve started thinking more about grit — and if I have enough of it to get to goal — after watching a Spartan Up podcast featuring Dr. Angela Duckworth, a top expert on all things gritty. Read More

From Fat To Finish Line World Premiere In April

One film I’m looking forward to seeing this year is From Fat To Finish Line. It’s a documentary about 12 strangers who collectively lost 1,200 pounds (roughly 100 pounds each), became friends via social media, and decided to take on a huge challenge – the 200 mile Ragnar Relay Race.

The film is finally finished and is premiering at the Nashville Film Festival. The first showing is slated for Saturday, April 18 at 7:30 p.m. There’s also a second showing Friday, April 24 at 6:00, kicking off the Nashville Rock n’ Roll Marathon weekend.

Coincidentally, I’m running a 5K race April 18 and can’t make the 12 hr drive for the world premier. Sadly the 24th is out of the running for me too.

If you are in the Nashville area, show the film some love and try to attend. The more we support positive films like this, the more people learn that weight loss, like anything else, is possible.

You can follow From Fat To Finish Line’s Facebook page for release dates and streaming info as it becomes available. You can also check out the website to learn about the runners (scroll over their images to see their awesome transformations).

Setting My Final Goal Weight – It’s All About Happiness

Just had my physical and decided to chat with my doctor about setting a weight loss goal. His answer surprised me.  Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhoto.net and hyena reality.

Just had my physical and took the opportunity to chat with my doctor about setting a final weight loss goal. His awesome answer surprised me. Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhoto.net and hyena reality.

When I went in for my physical in 2014, I weighed 215 pounds. For my 2015 physical I tipped the scales at 189. I’m down 26 pounds in a year. I set a mini-goal of getting under 190 before I met with my doctor for my physical. Needless to say, I had a big smile on my face when I saw that number.

As for sitting down with my doctor, I had one thing on my mind:  finally nailing down my goal weight. What’s a healthy weight for woman my height and age?

But first up, the blood work.

For the 3rd year in a row all my health numbers were awesome. Giving up simple carbs (quick digesting carbs) truly turned my health around. I’m off the blood pressure meds, I’ve lost 136 pounds total, and I’m no longer at risk for type 2 diabetes or dropping from a heart attack.

I’m just super! Read More