Saturday, September 29, 2012


What are the common excuses you use to skip exercise?

My top excuses when I exercise at night are:
  1. I'm too tired! 
  2. I've worked hard all day (cleaning house, chasing kids, whatever) and I just don't have the energy tonight.
  3. It's too late! I should have exercised an hour or two ago. If I start my workout now I wont be able to get to sleep!
  4. I just want to sit down and relax!
  5. My husband is home and I want to spend some time with him.
  6. So-and-so (usually one of the kids) has some event tonight that we need to go to.
  7. I just finished dinner because we've been running behind schedule all day and I can't exercise on such a full stomach.
  8. I'm emotionally worn out. The kids were terrors today and I just can't even think about working out.
My top excuses when I exercise first thing in the morning:
  1. I'm too tired! I was up with one or more of the kids too much last night and I just need a little more sleep.
  2. I have to be somewhere really early this morning and I don't have time to get it done. (This is only valid if I haven't set my alarm to get up earlier to compensate for the appointment, or if I already used excuse number 1 to stay in bed past the earlier alarm time)

Yep! That's it!  I can come up with so many more excuses in the evening, and the problem is that all these excuses are usually valid reasons. But they are still excuses. Overcoming the temptation to use those excuses is a constant battle in my head.

What are your excuses?

Friday, September 28, 2012

New attitude -- It's not just hype that you hear!

A few years ago the thought of exercising every day was not an appealing thought to me. Truthfully it still isn't at the top of my list of things I like to do. I would still prefer to sleep in every day. My children make that an impossibility though. :)

I have noticed a change in my attitude though over the last couple of years. I would say that it took a few months for me to notice it, and since then it has just gotten stronger and stronger. What is this change you may ask? Well I have found that my day goes better and I am more productive when I start my day off with exercise. I remember hearing people say that all the time and I would think "sure...of course you get more done during the day, you get up earlier! If I got up as early as you do then I would get more done too."

When I started my weight loss journey I exercised at night, after the kids were in bed and before my husband got home from work/school. I really enjoyed that time of the day at first. But I quickly found that I would be extra careful all day long about what I ate so that when I weighed in that evening I would see a change, and a positive change not a weight gain! This is when I discovered that certain foods weigh more in my stomach than others! LOL Seriously though, I did find that my body holds on to rice and pasta far longer than I thought. I started limited my rice and pasta intake (something that I still catch myself doing at times) because I didn't want that extra little weight to show on my weigh in. I knew that wasn't really "fair" to myself since those foods aren't bad for me, they just stick around longer! It made dinner choices very limited and my kids started to forget that they really do like rice and pasta. That created another problem for me because on the nights that I did make rice or pasta I had to convince my kids to eat their dinner and that usually became a difficult thing to do.

So when Jan mentioned to me that she weighs in first thing in the morning before eating or drinking anything at all I decided to change my routine. I started getting up in the morning and doing my weigh in and then working out. Not only did I find that I could comfortably eat those yummy rice and pasta dishes again, but I really do get more accomplished during the day! I have more energy during the day too!

My kids have always been early risers, much to my dismay. When I switched to morning workouts I didn't need to get up any earlier, I just worked out instead of laying on the couch supervising my kids until a more "reasonable hour".

By the time I am done exercising my mind is wide awake and I'm feeling motivated to get things done! My kids are now old enough that I am comfortable letting them get up about an hour or so before I do, so occasionally I stay in bed a little later than normal. There is a benefit to doing that occasionally because I am naturally a night owl instead of a morning person. Having that extra hour in bed occasionally is just heaven in my opinion! So yesterday was one of those days.

I mentioned to my husband after I got up that I was going to have a difficult time fitting my exercise in because of the canning that needed to be done today and the fact that I was already running late. His response is always that I could just do it later in the day, after the other work is done or after the kids are asleep, like I used to do it. I am just not able to do that any more. If I don't exercise in the morning then it isn't going to happen that day. Not only do I feel better about myself, and I'm more motivated to get things done, but if I wait until the end of the day it is so very easy to come up with more excuses to skip my exercise! Today I didn't get up any later than normal but I just didn't feel like I had gotten quality sleep. I was very tired and tempted to skip my workout. I wrote part of the post last night before going to bed and so when I was tempted to skip my exercise this morning my own words came back to haunt me! I decided that since I was so tired and I had been slow in getting the kids dressed and ready for school this morning I would do an abbreviated workout instead of my normal one. I chose to do the Slim & 6 Pack today because it's a short, but intense, 15 minute ab workout. I do feel better about the day already since I made that decision and although it was a shorter workout my abs still feel like I worked hard! :)

Monday, September 24, 2012

Am I setting my kids up to have weight problems?

Woohoo! I'm so excited that I can actually access and post a real entry! I started this entry the other day but then I hit an error message so I was hoping this entry saved as a draft, and it here it is:

So this afternoon I've been browsing other blogs and one blog post in particular got me thinking...what about the future? I was reading This post and Diane mentioned that as a child she was encouraged to eat everything on her plate. I was told to do the same. I know that part of that was my parents way of teaching me to be careful how much I put on my plate because if I took more than I would really eat chances are my mom would be throwing it in the garbage at the end of the meal. When you are looking at the amount of food that 5 young kids may "waste" by loading their plates too full that could me a great deal of money "wasted" by the family in the long run! I hate wasting money and throwing food away really bothers me. I would much rather put left overs in the fridge for the next day's lunch or if it's a really small amount that is left I will sometimes use that as a snack.

So how do you teach your kids these important lessons without them growing up with the idea in their heads that they have to eat everything on their plate even if they are full? I mean it is better to throw the food away or put it in the fridge rather than stuff yourself fuller than is healthy! I can't blame all my weight issues on being told to eat all my food, but I do admit that there were times even as an adult where I ate more than I should have because I didn't want to waste my money or my food.

That took on a new dimension when I became a mom because I found that I didn't want to waste the food on my kids plate either! If there was something left on their plate that was still edible I would often finish it off...especially potatoes in all their varieties! That was a hard habit for me to break when I first started my weight loss journey...and I still struggle with it. Whenever I make french fries here at home I cannot let any go to waste! To me "left over" french fries are not that great, they need to be eaten when they are hot! :) So I am trying to find that balance. After reading her post and thinking and writing about it I have to admit that I probably "force" too much on my kids. I don't mean I make them over eat...I mean I don't allow them to get down from the table and go play when they first want to. I have very slow eaters in my home. Which is great! Except that I get very frustrated when they are still sitting at the table 45 minutes later and they are only half way through a sandwich! I know (from experience) that if I allow they to get down part way through their meal and go play then it is highly likely that 30 minutes after I finish cleaning up the meal they will be back complaining that they are hungry again! That irritates me, especially when it's at night! I hate being woken up in the middle of the night because they are hungry and can't sleep.

So how do you know when it's ok to let them go play, and when it's right to force the eating to continue. The last thing I want is to have any of my kids struggle with weight even in part because of some idea that they have to over-eat in order to avoid wasting food.

So what do you do? How do you walk that line? :)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

I don't know if this will post...but I'm going to try it. I am having problems with Blogger and accessing my blog. I am not sure what the cause is but I can tell you that many other people are having the same problem according to the forums and such. So hang in here with me please! I am trying to get the problem resolved, as quickly as I can. I will be back to update more as soon as I know if this works or the error messages go away!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Follow up on Last Week's Tip

So last week after my Tips post my sister informed me that you can use "unsweetened apple or white grape juice instead of syrup." That had me intrigued. I bought a box of apples to make applesauce out of, but  I only needed 1/2 box for applesauce so I took the other 1/2 box and juiced it. I got about 29 cups of juice. Yesterday I canned my peaches and my pears. I had exactly enough juice and didn't have to make any light syrup to preserve my peaches and pears! They are pretty too. 

Ok, so I used Gala Apples and because they are a red apple the juice was a reddish/brown. Then I had Oh Henry Peaches, which have some red meat in them so my jars are not a golden color like I've always had in the past, they are more of an orange/red color, but I think they are still pretty! :) 

The 3 on the top right are peaches, the others are the pears. In total I got 10 quarts of peaches and 11 quarts of pears! The apple juice is so mild that the main "flavor" is just a light sweet real apple taste to speak of and not a syrup-y taste either. I would not use this juice as a regular apple juice to drink because it is so mild, but I think it's going to be perfect for this canning project! And there is no sugar added! :) The other great thing about using the apple juice is all the money I saved by not using all that sugar! If I had white grape juice on hand I would have tried some in grape juice too....but I only had apple. I'll have to update you when I open the first bottle!

Have any of you ever tried anything like this before?

Monday, September 10, 2012

Getting started again

I said last week that I had learned my lesson again about not exercising....So this morning I started in on my workout routine again. I was happy to see that I had dropped a few pounds since my last weigh in. I had forgotten how much better I feel during the day when I have worked out. I had a very busy day and somehow I managed to get through it without any down time! I know that without that exercise I would have been dragging at least 3 hours earlier than I am now!

I think the 2nd and 3rd days are always harder than the first though which means tomorrow is going to be harder than today. I started with the Wii Fit Plus workout again. I was surprised at how out of breath I was by the end of the "ride". I shouldn't have been surprised though since it's been over a week since i did any cardio workout. With that in mind I better cut this short and get to bed early tonight so I can actually get up and exercise in the morning! ;)

Friday, September 7, 2012

Lesson Learned...AGAIN

So what does a week of Pizza +  more Pizza + Rice Krispy Treats + another Pizza + Cheesy Bread + Cookie Dough + NO EXERCISE = ??


Yep, that's what I learned again when I weighed in yesterday Not just a little weight either...nope. It's my largest weight gain since I originally hit my goal. Although eating it was yummy (ok the second night of pizza in a row did not affect my body well at all! I paid for that night for 2 days!) it was not the smartest way to celebrate reaching my goal weight again.

In all fairness though I should point out that's not why I was eating that in the first place. The rice krispy treats were a celebration for my husband's birthday. The extra pizza was a result of being out of town and arriving at our destination after our normal dinner time. The cheesy bread and cookie dough were a direct result of being depressed. Yes I am an emotional eater and they got the better of me. The lack of exercise can only be explained, note I said explained not excused, by lack of planning. I was busy and I just didn't feel like exercising. I should have because that probably would have helped with the depression I was feeling. But the simple fact is that I didn't want to get out of bed and exercise. And when I was out of bed I still didn't want to exercise. Bad me.

Lesson learned. I will not procrastinate exercising and I will not give in to the sly inner voice trying to get me  to eat my cares away. I know that eating this way will only bring me long term unhappiness...even if I ignore that knowledge some times. So back to the exercise and eating healthy plan.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Tip of the day

For those of you who don't know, I have been doing a lot of home canning lately, and there is more to come! While growing up my mom always canned food from our garden and then we got to eat it all winter long. She would can green beans, carrots, pickles, peaches, pears, syrup and jams just to mention a few. I never had any interest in helping, that was too much work! I often wondered why she spent so much time and energy doing it too. I thought it was mainly to save money because it can be far less expensive than buying those products in the store. When I became a mom I started doing some of my own canning. I have actually come to kind of enjoy it.

The obvious benefit of home canning is saving money, but there is an added benefit that I hadn't thought about until this summer. Have you ever noticed the difference between home canned peaches and store bought canned peaches? Or syrup? To me there is an obvious taste difference, and a big part of that difference is the amount and type of sugar that is used in the canning process! Canning uses a lot of sugar!

A couple of weeks ago I started looking at possibly using sugar substitutes in my canning endeavors. It started while I was making maple syrup. The syrup just tasted really sugary to me. I wondered if I could make syrup with less sugar, or with a substitute. Well I decided that it would be more expensive to use a substitute and would probably negate the cost benefit of canning it myself. So instead I cut the sugar down by a quarter. That tasted better but I thought I could cut it down more. So I cut it in half! YUM! You get so much more of the actual maple flavor that way.

My mom told me that she had cut the sugar for the berry syrup by 1/3 this year and still liked it so I followed suit. I love it! I also made my own applesauce, and I didn't use any sugar at all! I haven't canned my peaches and pears yet, but when I do I will be cutting the sugar down in those also.

So what is the hidden benefit of home canning? You get to make it healthier! That is my tip of the day! If you are canning food this year look at how much sugar you use. See if there is a way to cut it down, or substitute something healthier that will still preserve and help sweeten the food you are canning! If you don't do your own canning you may want to look into it! I don't feel so guilty having pancakes and syrup often when I have canned the syrup and I know how much is natural berry juice!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Last weeks review

Last week was a little crazy and I didn't get my review posted...or written! Which is a big bummer because I had great news last week. I finally got back to my goal weight! I hit my goal weight last December, but it lasted for only a couple of weeks! I've been working to get back to it ever since then and I finally made it last Wednesday!

Of course then my husband's birthday came along and his mom made these huge delicious Rice Krispy Treats for him (they are his favorite) and they even had M&M's on top! How was I to possibly resist those? I didn't. I haven't weighed in since then so I don't know how much work I have to do now....but for at least 2 days I was back to that goal weight! :)

This month is going to be a long running start to the holiday temptations! It started with Larry's birthday, but there are 2 more birthdays to come this month! Then we have Halloween next month, followed by Thanksgiving and then Christmas and New Years! Yes, it is just the beginning...

So it is time for me to listen to my own advice and make sure that I'm prepared! :)

Are you prepared?