Visit Me ‘There’ Too

Good morning all!

A new adventure for being a better me. I started a second blog – this one has an entirely different focus than just WLS. It’s about personal development and the path of defining oneself. Stop by

http://theroadtothere.live

Advertisements

I cannot describe this feeling…

 
I did it. I just hit “submit” on the very last paper I’ll ever have to write for school!  Ever! It’s not ‘official’ until my grade posts later this week, but I’m counting it as DONE!

I literally can’t stop smiling right now. Oh my God, I’ve been in school (bachelors and masters) for 5 years! I took a 6 month break between degrees but I knew it was just a break. I was going to jump right back in.  This time I know, I’m like done for good.  The relief I feel is overwhelming. The pride I feel is amazing. 

10 More Days – hell week

Ten. More. Days. Of HELL, but hey it’s only ten days, right?

I have a 2-hour program major exam this week and a 12-page paper due on the 31st by midnight. (In the middle of this, I just got two new clients at work and have been configuring sites like mad).

I WILL BE A GRADUATE!  What I’ve always wanted – my Master’s Degree!!! 🎓

 

I barely made it y’all. Between my marriage falling apart (at the time-all better now) through the first year of this program, starting a new career in the middle, and having to take a course twice, this was a true struggle. I will graduate with a 3.2 GPA so I guess I didn’t scrape it totally, but it has taken everything in me to get here.

So, send me little prayers to get me through the last stretch…I’m gonna need ’em!

Pictures say a thousand words

  
My husband was looking at ‘before’ and ‘now’ pictures of me today and showing them off to clients (note to husband: please don’t do that!).  But he was telling me how shocked he was himself to see those pictures of me from 4 months ago. He said he never “saw me that way”. Welcome to my world buddy. I never saw myself that way either. I mean, I know I was (still am) overweight but what I saw in the mirror compared to pictures was definitely a distorted kind of mind denial or something. I know I’ve posted this picture before, but I have to say this one was my last straw – I scheduled my surgery the very next week. 

  
I know I still have a long way to go but I see pictures of me now compared to this and I’m so revved I made this decision and am on this journey!

 

And this was 15lbs ago!
 
Keep in mind, I was working out and dieting like crazy for 2+ years in the first photo! Lose 10, gain 30…yo-yo roller coaster from hell, you all know the drill. 

 

Yes you will. It’s been a little more than 3 months and I am kissing myself for taking control.  

This is NOT EASY. I fight my food addiction Every. Day. And I am having to re-program my emotional and behavioral habits of turning to food. I swear I had no idea how affected I was until after surgery.  But I am making progress!

 

I tore down those walls on September 16th. And I’m seeing progress! I’m healthier. I’m more confident. I’m happier.  And I’m a better person today for all of those things. 

Best. Decision. Ever.  

Strength & Confidence

“Remember when we used to sit on our asses and smoke?”

That’s what one of my dearest friends said after a run in the park together a couple of weeks ago. I laughed my head off and still giggle everytime I think of it. Because it’s so true…We would sit on my front porch, yammering about everything while smoking our cigarettes. (I miss that house…but I digress…)

Wow, life is so different than it was then. So what happened next? Let me see….my husband went through two layoffs, I got laid off 6 months later, we started a business, lost our house, cars, and retirement, closed down the business, moved to a farm, started raising cattle (our new retirement plan), husband changed careers, I went back to school, almost got a divorce, started a new career… Whew! That’s my life for the past 6 years in a very breif nutshell.  Now that’s getting personal!

The point?

I look back at all of this – all of the pain, the turmoil, the stress, just the hurdles life has thrown in my path – and I look at myself in the eyes today. I. Am. Badass.  And I am PROUD of myself. I didn’t just survive these things, I fought the battles, and I conquered them.  Looking at where I’m standing today, I am holding the flipping gold metal!

I am not just rambling on to pat myself on the back to y’all. Thing is, I want to remember these things and hold them in my memory on purpose.  Lessons to learn, absolutely. But more than that, proof that I have the strength to overcome and persevere.  Self-confidence hasn’t been the easiest thing for me, like ever.  But reflecting on these things makes me realize I am strong. I should be confident in myself. I can look in the mirror and see pride.  So, as I look to kick off a new year tomorrow, I am going to remind myself of these things every day. I refuse to see failure in the mirror any. more.

I urge each of you to maybe do a little reflection of the obstacles you have likely overcome in your life as well. It’s enlightening – and dare I say liberating – to realize where your strength has guided your path, and maybe you don’t really realize it until you look back…

Don’t walk quietly into 2016. Jump for joy into it and make it the best year yet!

Happy New Year All and let’s do this – with no inhibitions and full of confidence!

A Brand New You, Effective Tomorrow

Reflections and Resolutions

As I reflect on the year of 2015, I truly am blown away by all of the changes I have personally made in my life, in just this last year. Not in any particular order…I changed careers, I took control of my health and gave myself another tool so that I might finally be successful, I started this blog, and I took a focused look inward to realize my strengths and weaknesses to tackle what I need to celebrate and what I need to work on in the various aspects of my life.  I did good this year. All of the things I set out to do this year I did, and more. 

Now I have to admit, I met 2015 with a battered heart and a lack of faith in myself, really walking adrift and aimless at the beginning. For most of 2013 and all of 2014 my sole focus was on my marriage and keeping the kids oblivious to the turmoil. With the dust settled, doors closed, and new foundations being constructed by the end of 2014 I took a look in the mirror last New Year’s Eve and, while I was hopeful, I was damn tired. Drained. Like swimming in the ocean for months and months and finally making it to the shore, success!, but no more gas in the tank, know what I mean?  I didn’t have a plan for my personal goals and growth.  I couldn’t even tell you what those were. Yes I was in the middle of grad school but just pushing the paces to get me through until graduation.  

It wasn’t until February when I was sitting in a 3-day summit meeting at work when it hit me – dead in the face – what in the hell am I doing here? I hate this industry and there’s no where for me to grow or even do something different!  I made a plan then and there. I was going to bide my time, finish grad school, then go on the hunt for something inspiring and ideally from home. My kids are getting into their teenage years and my constant presence in their lives would be even more vital than ever before. A week later a job popped up in my LinkedIn profile bar, and it was with a company I desperately wanted to work for and had wanted to for 3 years.  I didn’t go lookin for it either-in my mind I wasn’t ready. But there it was, right in front of me. I took a chance and applied. 7 weeks and 5 interviews later I was offered a position with this company and I haven’t looked back. More money, I work from home, and the growth opportunities are endless. And I absolutely love what I do now and the company I work for. 

Meanwhile, I took a strong hold on my health. Diet and exercise, Crossfit, personal trainer, c25k, weight watchers, I was in the war zone – and losing. Discouraged and depressed I turned to food and self-sabotaged every effort I was making. But I didn’t stop the efforts, just obviously couldn’t break trough. I gained 40 lbs in 6 months. Enough was enough and VSG was going to help me win over depression and self-sabotage. I committed and was/am all in now. Best decision ever.  

I started this blog. Both to meet fellow WLS Angels and to keep myself accountable. A bonus would be if I helped others out in their journeys too. It’s been amazing so far, living my journey and sharing with others and becoming friends with people who understand just how hard this really is. 

Those are the highlights-the big stuff-and just know there were so many other changes in my life I was making too. 

So, when I look in the mirror on Thursday I ask myself what I will see. What will I do? What do I want and How will I do it?  I want answers and plans on Thuraday-a list and a plan. 

So what is your New Year’s resolution?  2016 has a whole host of changes coming my way-those that are already seen. Student loans, financial planning, the logistical stuff yes, but things that need to be tackled for sure. 

But what about the me part? I am a mom and a wife and I am not by any means a selfish person. But 2016 is going to be focused on me. Selfish? Maybe. But the better I make me, the better I am for those impacted by me.  

I bought a Passion Planner.  I oogled and googled and found the right one for me. I’m very excited about receiving it. It may not be here for a few weeks but the site allows you a free download so I printed the directions and a few weeks to get me started for when I get the book. And I am excited. I am looking deep to find my true passion.  I am making an action plan, that incorporates all of my life goals and tasks to make my way towards them into my daily routine. My New Year’s resolution? To diligently USE my planner everyday, to capture my thoughts and be accountable to my dreams and what I am doing to make them a reality. I won’t accomplish everything in one year,  I know, but at least will be driving the bus to a destination of my own design. 

No more aimless days of just getting through the logistics of daily life. I will walk with purpose. And I will have yet another tool in my Arsenal to help me get there. 

   
So what are your resolutions? Your passions? I’d really love to hear…

Happy Thanksgiving 

There are so many things I am thankful for right now, I’m not even sure I could list them all here.  It all sums up to God Is Good and I am humbled by His love!

I wanted to take a moment to say thank you to all of you who get me through the ups and downs of my journey and who care enough to cheer me on and keep me accountable.  And who’s journeys inspire me on a daily basis.  

You. Are. Amazing!

Im so glad I started this blog and thank each of you for being my friend in this place! 

So Happy Thanksgiving, may your day be filled with love and laughter (and maybe a bite or two of indulgence)! 

With love,

Amanda

Accuracy, Race, & Reflection

First, I have a correction to make. It seems that my husband and I took my measurements wrong the first time we did them (after the personal trainer did them the day before surgery).  So we did them again yesterday, correctly, and here are my actual inch changes since surgery:

 


Again, this is the My Body app on iPhone. So easy-love it. Anyway…

Lots to talk about today. Did my 5k under the Christmas Lights last night and really killed it. I was SO proud of myself after this race! It took my son and I over 7 minutes to get past the WALL of people walking and the strollers.  Why we decided to start in the last corral…well, it was a big mistake. I don’t know if I ever want to do a race that big again-over 1500 racers. But once we broke through, it wasn’t too bad passing people throughout the race. The last mile was almost completely up-hill. My son made me long-stride run that dang last mile though, let me tell you. And I DID (most of it)!!!  With all of that nonsense in the beginning our time was still 46:41. I think that could have honestly been 43-something  had it not been for the wall of slog.  See, a lot of people just walk this race to see the Christmas Lights-which is why those smart people start in the last corral and why we shouldn’t have. It was a really pretty race to run though, I’ll have to admit. The Lights really were amazing and put me in the Holiday spirit. And I beat my time by almost 4 minutes from last weekend, so go me! 

Son has Poison Oak so bad, thats why his face/eye looks crazy

So my crazy self decided it would be fun to run another 5k at the park with my very good girlfriend who is training for a half ironman in June.  Boy runningef today was hard and I think I power walked more than I jogged, but I still got 47:17, so still better than last weekend. (I clearly didn’t push myself at all last weekend…). 

I’m so sore I can barely move this evening. It’s a good sore though-I know I really worked it this last week and weekend.

I broke into one-derland today!!! Woo-hoo! 199.2 baby! Excited to what the morning scale will say…so glad to finally be here I cannot describe. 

Looking forward to a great week!
  

Planning

Happy Friday! It’s not Friday, but it’s my Friday today!!! Yay!  I have had such a busy but productive week that it feels like Friday anyway! Plus I’m off tomorrow… Hee hee! 😬

So I got to thinking the other day…I’m going to graduate soon!  And I got an inkling in my brain “should I throw a party in celebration?”  So I did what most would do and I asked my best friend… She said Hell Yes! And then she mentioned something that hadn’t even occurred to me- graduation announcements! 

I have been scouring venues for a party and graduation annnounent invitations ever since. I’m so excited! I think I have found the perfect invitation announcement, venue is a little bit iffy still though. The place I really want to have it does not book reservations or private parties on Friday or Saturday nights. Weeknight parties are a no-go with my invite list.  Totally bummed about that so the hunt is still on.  I’ve made my invite list and everything so I can begin collecting addresses. Adam cracked me up by asking “don’t you just do an online announcement invitation?”  I’m like, No not for this, du-uh! lol!

But it’s like, it really has sunk in that I’m going to be done with school. Soon. I’ve been in school for over 4 years folks.  This is freaking awesome! And there’s a party in my near future.  Wooooooo-hooooo on all counts!

Saturday is my glow-in-the-dark 5k race. My daughter, best friend, and more friends are doing it too. It’s going to be a fun night!  What will I wear…👟👟

Happy Thursday, y’all! 

-xoxo

Tuesday’s Musings

Happy Tuesday!

So I finally broke down today after a talk I had with a friend and made an appointment with my doctor’s office for Friday.  I had already taken the day off so I was glad to get in.  I asked to only see the nutritionist this time, so maybe they will actually see me in less than a 30 minute wait.  I refuse to be there more than two hours waiting to be called again!  If that happens I can assure you I’m hunting a new doctor that is more respectful of my time.  Will update on that.

I’ve been logging everything that goes into my mouth via MFP and maintaining my nutrient ratios and calorie intake.  Some days I’m a little over on carbs, but not by too much.  It mostly stems from fruit or my indulgence of cream of wheat some days.  Hey it’s packed with iron!  I seem to be right around 80g average a day on the protein.

Once again I’m stalled.  Which is having its effects on my motivation.  Annnnd I’ll just leave that topic there, because there’s no point in whining about my frustrations with this 2+ week stall – again.

I’m spending a good deal of time reflecting on the things that I am thankful for this month.  I know a lot of people like to take the month of November and do this.  I think it’s a good thing, and I started a couple of years ago.

Geez, I think about where I was a little over a year ago and am just blown away that I’m in the place that I am today.  My marriage has flipped upside-down (in the best way),  I finally took the leap and started a new career that I specifically wanted and managed to land, I’m almost done with my Master’s degree, I took this great big step for my health with VSG, and my relationship with God continues to grow every day.  It’s AMAZING how things can look so bleak one day and then be golden the very next.  Well, maybe not the next day, but all of the dramatic changes in my life are still so fresh and mind-blowing.

So, I’m just going to revel in my happiness and thankfulness this month and try not to worry about the scale.

More to come soon…

-XOXO