KAREN’S PERSONAL WEIGHT LOSS JOURNAL

START WEIGHT:  177 lbs.

CURRENT WEIGHT: 168 lbs.

I lost nine pounds in nine months.

When I first started this weight loss blog I was confident I would reach my goal before the summer was over.  Didn’t happen.  Then I asked myself, how long do I keep this up or how much longer will it take to lose the weight?  Well, I took a few breaks along the way.  If you’ve been following you  may have wondered what happened to my updates.  I’m sorry for that, but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do and I needed time to figure it out.  I have made a decision.

This is my final weight loss blog.  At least for now.  I have plateaued at a total nine pound loss.  I am still struggling with all the same issues I had started with.  That is time management, exercise consistency and intensity.  I have  had many highs and lows along the way.  The truth is (and I know I’m not alone here) I wear a lot of hats.  It’s impossible to wear all these hats every day.  For example, sometimes I wear my chef’s hat (I wear this one a lot) and I spend hours in my kitchen preparing meals for my family.  Other days I wear my  mom hat (this one also gets worn a lot) and I’m spending quality time with my daughter.  Then, some days I wear my me hat.  This is my time.  I work out, go for walks, meditate, read and do all those things that are good for my body, mind and soul.  I need this time, but unfortunately, my me hat doesn’t get worn as often as I’d like.  I also have a business hat, a housekeeper hat, wife hat, friend hat, etc. etc.  So many  hats and so little time…..

If you’ve been following my weight loss journey you will know that my goal was to lose 25 lbs, or to reach a  healthy BMI.  BMI is body mass index and although it’s not the only tool available to track progress it is important to me that I reach that healthy range.  Currently my BMI is 26.3, which classifies me as slightly overweight.  Therefore, I am still working on losing those ‘last ten pounds’.  When I get there I will post my final update.

Hawaii 2006

Me in 2006 at 145 lbs.

In the meantime I want to share my views on weight loss with you.  In my younger years I have always thought that I needed to lose weight, even when I didn’t.  For example, in this picture to the right I was 145 lbs and I felt fat.  I realize now that is my happy weight and I wish I was happy then instead of trying so hard to attain perfection.

I hate that women are made to feel like they have to be ‘skinny’.  No wait.  Not women, but girls.  Young girls who should be enjoying their childhood and their youth.  I hate that my daughter will feel pressure to look a certain way.  In fact, it’s already started!  I swore my daughter would not get caught up in the whole princess thing, but guess what.  It happened.  I did not encourage her to be a princess, but now I find her idolizing Elsa (thanks Frozen! – yes, that’s sarcasm although I admit the movie is pretty awesome) asking for lipstick and earrings, admiring herself in the mirror.  I let her dress up, although lipstick is not an option at this point.  She’s four.  I do it because I have to let her be who she is.  I can only be as honest and real with her as I can, and be a good role model.  This means wearing all my hats.  It means making the time to cook healthy food, while teaching her the importance of nutrition.  It means making physical activity a priority not to achieve some desirable body image, but to be a healthy person.  Most importantly, I want to teach her to be happy with her body no matter what number is on the scale.

Sam doing yoga

My daughter practicing downward dog.

Pregnancy does a lot to a woman’s body.  As does age.  Let’s face it, I am not the same person I was in 2006.  (Yes, that was 8 years ago)  I am not sure if I will ever get back down to 145 lbs.  And maybe that’s ok.  But, I will keep trying to include more quality physical activity into my daily routine, which includes those loathsome squats, lunges and push-ups.  I will practice yoga with my daughter (that’s her to the left, the cutie!) and continue to run not because I need to prove anything to anyone or because I need to look a certain way, but because I know it’s good for me.  I will never achieve perfection and I have accepted that.  I’m good where I am.  Life is short and I am not going to chase the dangling carrot anymore.  I spent too many years of my life feeling I was not good enough and those days are over.  I am proud of my achievements and my life, as imperfect as it may be.

Christmas is upon us and I will be taking some time off to spend with my family.  After the holidays I will continue to work towards my goal (although I will not be posting weekly videos anymore.  If you would like to watch my video blogs click on this LINK)  I invite anyone who is interested to join me in my 12 week online program “Eat Right, Look Great, Feel Awesome!  Not a Weight Loss Plan”.  I stress that it is not a weight loss plan because it’s more about incorporating a real food diet with positive lifestyle choices.  Yes, exercise is part of it although I don’t provide an exercise plan (remember, I’m not a personal trainer).  I do, however, provide a complete nutrition and lifestyle assessment which addresses individual needs and meal plans with recipes.  If you would like to join me in my weight loss journey after the holidays, please send me an e-mail to secure your early bird spot.  Registration is not open yet, but it will be in January 2015.  For more information on the program, visit this LINK.

All the best to you and your family this holiday season and in the new year.

Sincerely,

Karen.

PS  If you would like to read my entire weight loss journey including all written posts, click HERE.

168 lb selfie May 2014

My “after” at 168 lbs.

me and Sam in Florida 3

My “before” at 177 lbs.

 

KAREN’S PERSONAL WEIGHT LOSS JOURNAL

October 9, 2014.  Week 29.  10 lbs down.

CURRENT WEIGHT: 168 lbs.

TODAY’S TOPIC:  PRIORITIES

Life is busy. It’s hard to get everything done. We have commitments, schedules, chores, responsibilities. Jobs. We try to do it all, but sometimes when we focus too much on one, the others get left behind. I am working on that.

CLICK HERE for a list of my weight loss videos or HERE to go directly to my YouTube channel.

I have made a few decisions for myself based on priorities. The first was to change my exercise routine. I had to make it fit into my schedule, while keeping it enjoyable enough to maintain.

I have created a workout calendar that looks a little like this:

Monday:          40 minute run / 10 minute arms (free weights)

Tuesday:          10 minute legs (squats, lunges, etc. with weights)

Wednesday:     Yoga

Thursday:        10 minute arms (free weights)

Friday:             40 minute run / 10 minute legs (squats, lunges, etc. with weights)

I take weekends off.

If you saw my last video you will know that I have been having mixed feelings about doing the exercises I love as opposed to those I hate. I think I came to a good, happy medium. I am doing both. Notice that my strength training is only ten minutes. You might think that’s not enough, but those ten minutes are intense training. Those ten minutes are spent doing all the things I hate. Lunges, squats and push-ups. I despise lunges! But, I know they get me results. When I first started this journey in March, I did a lot of those exercises I hate. They were working! But, then I took a break. A long break. I stopped doing it because I hated it. I wanted to go for a run instead. Then my weight loss plateaued.

Basically, the intense personal training program that I had been doing didn’t stick long-term. I am ok with that. Really, I am. Because I think I can do this a better way. By following my new schedule of only working hard for ten minutes, I can push myself through it. Ten minutes is a lot easier to get through than an hour. Maybe this new schedule will work. Maybe it won’t. I have been following it for a week and a half. If I find I am not losing any weight, I will change it. This is a learning experience for me.

The weekly videos were causing me stress. Not only because some weeks I had no weight loss to report, but because I have other, more important things to do. I have decided to post my videos monthly rather than weekly. I need to focus on other areas of my life. My family. My job. My home. Those dishes are not going to wash themselves.

Of course, losing weight is a huge priority for me. Trust me, it’s right up there with spending quality time with my family. I have lost ten pounds since I started this journey! I am stronger than when I started and getting stronger every day.

I know everybody wants fast results. You want to see the ‘before’ and ‘after’ picture and be amazed. I have lost ten pounds, and yes, it took me months to get where I am now. I am not going to ‘wow’ you with promises of losing ten pounds in ten days, or dropping two sizes in two weeks. This is not what I’m about. What I can do is teach you how to eat a healthy, real food diet that will nourish your body. I can share with you my own personal approach to weight loss. I can let you know that it’s not easy, but it can be done. Every day you have the ability to make healthy choices and establish your priorities.

168 lb selfie May 2014

me at 168 lbs.

We all have the same amount of minutes in a day. What will you choose to do with your time?

 

 

KAREN’S PERSONAL WEIGHT LOSS JOURNAL

June 25, 2014.  Week 14.  Day 94.  8 lbs down.

CURRENT WEIGHT: 170 lbs.

TODAY’S TOPIC:  FEAR

Have you ever delayed or avoided a certain goal because you were afraid of the consequences? Maybe you are afraid of failure. Maybe you are afraid of appearing weak or incompetent. Maybe you are afraid of change. I am no stranger to fear. I was afraid to publically announce that I am overweight. I was afraid of failure. I was afraid of appearing weak or incompetent. I was afraid of judgement.

But, I did it anyway.

It’s been an empowering journey for me. I had moments when I felt guilty or disappointed in myself because I wasn’t losing weight fast enough. I got over that. I am now at a happy place, where I feel confident in my achievements so far and in my ability to keep going. At my current pace, I will reach my goal weight of 150 around Halloween. That’s ok. I am perfectly fine with that, and I am perfectly fine with where I am now. I am making more and more progress every day. And even though I am not at my ideal weight, I know I am stronger and healthier than I was yesterday.

I conquered two more accomplishments this past week that I was afraid of. In fact, I have been afraid of these both for a very long time. The first was I launched my e-book, ‘You and Your Baby: A Holistic Guide to Achieving a Healthy Pregnancy and Happy Baby’. What’s so scary about launching an e-book? I can be overly self-critical. In fact, I am a bit of a perfectionist. Not in the way that everything I do is perfect. In case you didn’t know, that does not exist. We all make mistakes. No, my perfectionism can hinder my accomplishments. It makes me do simple tasks over and over again, because they can always be improved. It took years before I was ready to send my e-book out in the world. I had mixed emotions that day. Relief, anxiety, hope, pride, and yes, lots of fear.

The second fear I recently overcame was rollerblading. Let me make one thing clear, I am not a natural skater. In fact, I am quite clumsy. I didn’t skate much as a child. I didn’t play hockey or ringette. When I was in my 20’s, I got my first rollerblades. I used to rollerblade with my sister through Assiniboine Park in Winnipeg. It was nice. And flat. I have some good memories from those days, skating with Jody Boyechko (she is now a Shaklee Independent Distributor, helping people live cleaner, healthier lives). Then I moved to Vancouver and I used to rollerblade through Stanley Park. Again, it was flat with many structures (and people!) nearby to use for support.

Last year was when I realized it had been over a decade since I have been rollerblading. I decided to get back into it. I even had a schedule in my mind of going at least once every second week. I went once last summer. I experienced my first, and most terrifying wipe-out! See, the trail I used was not flat. In fact, it has very deceptive hills. Hills which look like no more than a gradual decline, but can send you rolling down the trail with such speed that you freeze with fear, hold your arms out like wings (or propellers) and pray that your guardian angels guide you to safety.

rollerblading 1

The trail.

It took me almost a year to build up the courage to try rollerblading again. But I did it. I went back to the same trail. Too big a challenge, perhaps? I feel like I am jumping ahead of myself, like skiing a mountain before I’ve mastered the bunny hill. But, I did it anyway. And yes, I wiped out again.

This time I was prepared. I wore a helmet and wrist pads. This time I knew what to expect and my wipe-out wasn’t nearly as scary. I got dirty, but I didn’t get hurt. I practiced using my brake. At one point, I passed a rollerblading couple and told them it was my ‘first time’. I wanted to let them know, in case they noticed my dirty knees, or the way I was struggling to maintain balance. One of the rollerbladers said ‘Good job!’ the way I praised my daughter the first time she used the big toilet. It made me feel good. I was gaining confidence.  Soon my momentum picked up (as did my speed!) and I did not panic. I held out my arms, only this time they weren’t flapping, swinging or circling. I raised them above my head, perfectly still, and took a deep breath. For a brief moment, I was king of the world.

My fear had been replaced with a much better feeling.

Confidence.

I know what it’s like to wait for that perfect moment, when all the stars are aligned. If you are reading this, and been wanting to make a positive change for yourself or your family, your stars are aligned right now! Take the first step towards your biggest fear. Maybe it’s rollerblading. Maybe it’s losing weight or quitting smoking.  Only you know what your fears are that need to be faced.

I know. It’s scary.

It took me a long time to get back into those rollerblades.

But I’m so glad I did.

Rollerblade selfie 1

Me, overcoming my fear.

KAREN’S PERSONAL WEIGHT LOSS JOURNAL

May 26, 2014.  Week 10.  Day 64.  7 lbs down.

Seven pounds in nine weeks.  Some might say that’s not a great accomplishment.  Even I expected more from myself.

But, the truth is, I have been carrying around this extra weight for nearly four years.  I don’t expect to lose it (and keep it off!) in a short amount of time.  Even if it takes me a year, I’m ok with that.  What’s one more year?  Time flies!

I’m getting stronger.  I’m seeing shape and definition forming on my body!  I’m feeling good!

I also want to remind you, I didn’t have a lot to lose.  My goal is to lose 25 pounds.  Only 18 more pounds to go and I will be the weight I was when I got pregnant, and in a healthy BMI range.  A bigger, secondary goal is to gain muscle mass.

Me in a canoe May 2014 blog entry (2)

Me on the Ottawa River.

In my last written blog, I wrote about starting a nutritional detox.  Unfortunately, that hasn’t happened yet.  The stars were not aligned for me.  Meaning, the timing wasn’t quite right.   My biggest obstacle last week was a dinner I had planned with a friend.  We went to a popular restaurant.  I had a Thai noodle bowl.  It was delicious!  Now, are you wondering what’s wrong with a Thai noodle bowl?  Or why didn’t I order something like a salad instead?  Well, first, I will say there’s nothing wrong with a Thai noodle bowl.  But, restaurants rarely or never use organic ingredients (unless it’s an organic restaurant).  Thai sauce contains sugar.  Basically, a lot of restaurant meals will be low on nutrition, and high on calories.  By the way, I checked after my dinner when I got home, and that Thai noodle bowl was a whopping 900 calories!  And yes, I ate the whole thing.

If you’re still wondering why I didn’t order a salad, it’s because when I go to a restaurant I like to enjoy my meal.  I sometimes do eat salads.  And sometimes noodles.

Tomorrow I start my detox and I’ll admit, it’s not easy for me.  Yes, I’m a holistic nutritionist.  Yes, I eat healthy.  But hey, I am just like you.  I like my treats too.

Tomorrow I start my detox and I plan to follow it for seven days.  Seven days without wheat, dairy, sugar, coffee…and the list goes on…

I’ll keep you posted.

 

KAREN’S PERSONAL WEIGHT LOSS JOURNAL

April 16, 2014.  Week 4.  Day 24.  3 lbs down.

I need to step this up.  My new goal is 2 – 3 lbs per week.  I should reach my pre-pregnancy weight of 150 lbs by mid-July, if  not sooner.  I talked about my food choices in my last Youtube video and basically said that I’m not going to change the way I eat.  True, I eat well with treats in moderation.  Treats like chocolate, French fries, and yes, cheese.  If you saw the video you know that I made lasagna for dinner.  I ate that lasagna for three days in a row.  I like to prepare big meals that I can save for left-overs.  This way I don’t have to cook every day.  🙂

me and Sam in Florida 3

Well, maybe that ooey-gooey-yummy-lasagna came at a price.  Maybe it’s ok to eat cheesy pasta while ‘maintaining’ a healthy weight, but for a 2 – 3 lb weight loss I need to lose the cheese.  And probably the gluten too.

In fact, I’ll be preparing for a complete nutritional cleanse or detox in the next few days.  If you’re in the Rockland area, I would love to see you at my upcoming detox workshop.  To be perfectly clear, the purpose of a detox is not to lose weight.  It’s health benefits are so much more than that!  A detox will reduce your toxic load, resulting in an improved immune system and increased energy to name just a few.  Of course, by eliminating foods such as wheat and dairy, I’m sure to lose some extra pounds!