Monday, February 21, 2011

YES! I am Obese!

WHOO HOOO, I am now obese with a BMI of 39.2.  Why am I cheering to be obese, because previously I was morbidly obese.  At my highest measured weight I had a BMI of 46.5. I'll never forget the day morbid obesity was added to my medical chart.  Part of me wants to pay the $20 co-pay just to go to the doctor to get my chart updated to obese, but I think I need to put that $20 to better use, like a new shirt :)  This morning weight in brings me 1.7lbs away from my 50 lbs mark.  It was slow and painful last week, I'm hoping this week yields better results. 
I ended up with the 24hr stomach bug Sunday but am feeling much better today.  Paul and I rocked the gym Saturday when we started our tri training program.   The treadmill is still my enemy but I figured out why.  When I do the treadmill I'm constantly comparing myself to everyone else in the flippen world.   That in turn makes me feel like I'm never doing enough or feel good about what I accomplish.  I ended up having to cover the display up and Paul showed me how to do interval timing with it as well.  This helps by not allowing me to use the display to rate how I'm doing.  Once I do that, I'm jogging fast then I think I am.  I also figured another way to help me along, I'm going to start logging my time, distance and speed.  This way, I'm comparing myself against me, I'm seeing my progress and not focusing on anyone else.
I can't believe how different my fitness level is today compared to when I started training for my first triathlon.  I was only able to walk a mile in 20 minutes, I'm now able to fast walk/jog a mile in about 15 minutes.  I struggled to bike 3 miles in 30 minutes, I biked 8 miles in 25 minutes the other day.  My first attempt at swimming laps at a hotel pool . . . well sadly I could barley do one lap, today I can swim multiple laps.  I can't even begin to imagine what this years triathlons will be like, I'm so beyond excited for them. 
I'm doing well sticking with my training program, since I might not be able to bike tmrw, I moved it to today.  My "saddle" isn't trained like it was at the end of last summer so it's taking a little bit of time to get used to sitting on a bike seat again.  Plus I like to think I have less padding now then I did before.  I'm thankful for my indoor bike trainer on snowy days like this!

Unstoppable "Obese" Mariah

Friday, February 18, 2011

Lesson Learned

You must consume calories to burn calories.  Yes it’s true.  My plan yesterday worked and I’m back down my .09.  I must remember there is no quick fix.  It will be slow and steady.   Frankly while this is less exciting then seeing big digits at a time on the scale is way more livable and achievable.  When I eat the right amount of calories I feel NO deprivement at all.  Crazy huhh, honestly, I don’t feel like I’m missing out.   I can still eat girl scout cookies, eat chocolate, or have wine, I just can’t eat a box of girl scout cookies, a king size candy bar or a whole bottle of wine all at once.  One splurge, one serving a day is totally and completely acceptable.  While nutritional experts have been saying this all along, this is a revelation to me.  I’m re-learning how to eat and how to use food not only as fuel but also as a healthy balanced enjoyable experience. 

I’m overly excited for the weekend and hitting the gym.    I officially start my training program for my summer tri’s this weekend.  Trinona  is 113 days and 20 some hours away! Which makes it 16 weeks away.  It seems crazy to think it’s coming up so fast.  I’m going to write down my training program so I can stick to it.  I would like to get in 4 days of some type of working out.  I hope the weather continues to be nice because that will definitely help make it easier to get my times in.  We have a great paved path by our house which is great for jogging and biking, it just get’s flooded this time of year with all of the melting.

Unstoppable Lesson Learning Mariah

Thursday, February 17, 2011


So I had a small set back . . . .  I gained .09 even with my calorie deficits.  After pouting and having a small fit (if you ask Paul, he'll say it was a big fit), I figured out why.  It’s actually a combination on things.  It was due to taking in too few calories, too much salt and too little water.  In my excitement  in getting close to my 50lb mark I reduced my calorie intake.  Well that kind of backfired. L  Along with that, I was eating too many salty snacks (popcorn, pretzels, chex mix) and haven’t been good about getting my water in.   So today I’m focusing on getting my calories closer to 2200, my goal each day is 2325 while my calorie burn goal is  3075 calories in a day.  In the past few days my calorie intake has been ranging from 1400-1600.  Today, I feel like I’m eating all of the time and am totally fearful of gaining weight and working hard to push that out of my mind.  I’ve been reading online the importance of a healthy calorie intake and using exercise to go into a deficit.  I’ve drank a ton of water today, took more calories in and will do a step exercise tonight.  Hopefully the wii board will be more forgiving tomorrow.

With the fab weather today I decided to have the courage to wear short sleeves.  It was an act of courage because of my new BFF BUD.  Today, everyone could see BUD.  I got anything from stares, to questions of how it’s been going with BUD (for those who know of him), from what the heck is that on your arm.    People’s reactions varied, some people are excited and think it’s great, others thinks I’m a little nuts (granted I am, but that’s beside the point).  Someone at work seemed surprised I would wear BUD when he was showing, I told her I wasn’t ashamed of needing a little extra help.  While I have been a little embarrassed with all the questions and now it’s quite visible that I’m working hard to lose weight, never was I ashamed.  I’m a little nervous because I feel like more people are now watching and paying attention to see if I reach my goal, but I’ll just use that as an incentive to work harder.   I don’t even give people the opportunity to give me negative feedback about BUD, I just simply state his name is BUD and he helps me reach my goals.  I then tell them a little bit about BUD and how much I love him.   How can I not love BUD, he’s on my arm 23 hours a day, he’s  becoming part of me and who I am.   

I’ve got this hard to explain fear of reaching my 50lb mark that is causing me anxiety.  While one would think someone would be nothing but excited to reach their goals, it’s actually somewhat terrifying.  There are so many emotions that go with it,  I’m fearful I won’t make it, that something will get in my way.  I’m scared I will make it, because after that, there is another goal, and another goal, and another goal, it never ends.  Sad, because I had the power to do it all along and never did it before, it took me getting to 306lbs to wake up and realize I was slowly killing myself with obesity.  Silly that a little number carries so much meaning to it.  I guess in so many ways it’s not a number, but what the number has represented in my life.  Guilt because I’m putting myself first instead of others and  guilt because the more I change, the less I think of my son Joey.   While I still miss him, so much of the sadness and despair are gone.  It’s not that he’s forgotten, but the large hole in my heart has been almost completely filled with so many wonderful things that came from the gift he gave me.  I guess it’s guilt I feelfrom moving on.  Now that I'm writing it, I think it’s tied to fear that I’ll forget him.  And that’s totally silly and crazy, I will never forget Joey.  This is why I blog, because it helps me work thru this and talk it out.  Because now, I can acknowledge the feeling and deal with it, then move forward.       

Unstoppable “learning to be guilt-free”  Mariah

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

His name is BUD

I have been neglecting posting lately due to my crazy schedule.  Between work, school, home and exercising sometimes I run out of time.  I did however want to check in and let you know my great news today.  I’m at my lowest weight since I’ve started trying to lose.  This morning I weighed in at 259 pounds.  At the first of the year I was 272.4 after some holiday weight gain.   WHOO HOOOO!!!  I’ve lost 6.5 pounds since being introduced to my new BFF BUD (as Paul named him, Body Upgrade Device) and just about 13.5 since the first of the year.
BUD has been keeping me in line.  I still have to make the right good choices, I still have to exercise, I still have to plan, however BUD makes these decisions easier.  I’ve tried weight watchers before, but it never stuck for me and yet this tool is very similar in tracking food.  I’m been trying to figure out why this is working so much better for me.  It’s because can see exact calories in and out, my steps, my activity level etc click with me.  Seeing it “Black and White” makes it simple and registers in my mind better then points did.  It seems so elementary and it works so great for me.  I’m so happy Jason introduced BUD to me because it really is my BFF.  This is by no means a dig at weight watchers, I think everyone needs to find the tool that works for them, BUD isn’t for everyone.  I find I’m actually a little compulsive with it so I’m trying to keep balance.  I want to check my status right away when I get home if we are out.  It’s taken a little bit of time to get used to the logging of the food.  If they don’t have a food already in their database I can create one from the nutritional information on the label.  You can also create your own recipes and it saves all of this data.  This means I’m growing my own database and it’s tailored to me.  With good planning I can log my meals and snacks for the day right away in the morning and add or subtract as needed.  It’s amazingly actuate with its calculations because I can tell you based on its number what the scale will tell me. 

I’m slowly starting to feel good about my body.  I am starting to look myself in the mirror and not look away the second I see flesh.  It’s a great feeling to not feel ashamed or in denial every time I look into the mirror.  I know I still have a long way to go, but I’m much farther then I was a year ago and next year I’ll be even farther.    I am 3lbs away from my 50lb mark.  Sometimes I feel like I look like the same person on the outside that I did before I started my journey.   It’s strange, because it some ways I notice the small changes in my body but I’m sorta in disbelief about them.  For example, I’m noticing my stomach having a different look to it.  Instead of being one round pouch, it’s now a smaller pouch with indent in the middle making almost two small oval pouches.  However when I look in the mirror as a whole, I don’t see any changes.  It’s strange how your mind plays tricks on you, either I never saw myself for as large as I was or I still see myself as 306lbs.  I wonder if that will ever change?  It’s only when I look at pictures of my highest weight do I realize how different I’m starting to look.  It’s strange to run into people that I haven’t seen in awhile and their amazement with how different I look.  I can relate because with my husband’s weight loss, he looks amazing.  He has always been a loveable and adorable man.  But now, he’s HOT.  I mean like oh yeah, HOT!   We’ve been shopping before and he’ll run to grab something from a different isle and come back and I see this cute guy looking at me from the corner of my eye.  I’ll never get bored of realizing it’s my cute husband.  Whenever that happens I just want to give him a huge hug and a big kiss.  It’s not that I wasn’t in love with him before, I had found him attractive before, but just in different ways.  I love him the same as I’ve always loved him, but part of it is his attitude change.  I love how good he feels about himself.  I love how he carries himself with pride and that he cares about the way he presents himself.  He’s kinda the whole package now. 

I’m still in shock with how well BUD is working for me.  I keep waiting for that setback, I’m trying to figure out how to let those fears go.  I’ve lost weight before and put it back on.  This is the longest I’ve been on a weight loss trend.  Before I would lose 30lbs and within 6-9 months gain it back.  I’ve been at this for over a year and almost down 50lbs, the most weight I’ve ever lost.  I wonder if others struggling with weight have these same fears and worries?  Is this something that is normal as you start hitting your bigger goal marks?  Once I hit my 50lb (256lb) mark my next goal is 250 lbs.  I can’t even imagine how cool that will be.  It’s funny thinking 250 feels small, but after being 306, it honestly is.  When I break up my goals in small increments, like 5lbs, or exercising 3 days this week, or trying a new vegetable, it works. It’s hard to keep in that mindset and not focus on losing it all at once or changing everything at once.  Sometimes I feel a little lost in all the changes I’ve made.  In so many ways it feels like I found myself but at the same time, like I lost myself as well.  Sometimes parting with the person I used to be is a little sad and embracing the new is scary.  The old me is predictable and known, the new me is undiscovered and unknown.  What will I uncover, who will I find in the end, and do I have the courage to keep moving forward?  Who knows what I'll uncover, it never ends so I'll aways be changing, and of course I have the courage, I'm unstoppable.

Unstoppable almost 50lbs smaller Mariah

Thursday, February 10, 2011

My New Best Friend

I met a new best friend this week.  It hugs me every day, it reassures me when I’m doing the right thing, it keeps me on track by steering me in the right direction.  My new best friend is my Body Media Armband.  I love my armband.  I’m still looking for a name for it, I’m open to suggestions.
The armband is very similar to the bodybug most of you have seen on Biggest Loser.  This magic tool tells me how many calories I burn in a day, how many steps I take, what my activity level is (moderate or intense), how much sleep and what efficiently it is as well as a place to log my food.  It tells me these amazing statistics that enable me to make better choices.   It requires diligence and time to log my food for the day, but it’s well worth the effort.  It also gives you a neat layout of your food so you can gain a better overall look at where your calories are coming from and if you are meeting your nutritional goals.   You log your current weight, your ideal weight and then based on activity goals you find out how long it will take you to reach your ideal weight.  Based on my goals I should reach my current goal weight of 175lbs on Oct 29th, 2012.  That would be FANTASTIC!  Like whoo hooo, I’m happier than a pig in well, you know poop! 
I had been logging my foods before, but somehow seeing the numbers of calories I burn vs my intake looks different this way.  It ‘s black and white on the screen,  you eat this much, you burn this much.  You eat more then you burn, your weight goes up.  I’m excited to say I’m down 2.5lbs since wearing my new best friend.

Instead of being embarrassed about wearing my armband, I’m proud.  Honesty, it’s my new best friend.  It will go with me almost anywhere (except water activities).  I love what it represents, I love how it makes me accountable.  I love the feeling of empowerment it gives me.  I cannot wait to wear it this weekend at the gym.  I was originally going to do that mini-tri but my teammates are feeling under the weather so we plan to do it in April.  Paul and I were going to come up with an alternative for something challenging this weekend.

Please feel free to comment suggestions on a name for my new best friend J

Unstoppable Bodymedia Armband Loving Mariah

Sunday, February 6, 2011


In the words of my niece Sydney, OH YEAH!  It started off with a fun Friday night with my sister Molly.  We went shopping and successfully found a swimsuit that holds it all in.  We then headed for dinner, drinks and girl talk.  I had half a grilled chicken buffalo wrap and only half the fries.  I asked for the ranch dressing on the side so I could control the extra calories and barely had any of it.  I enjoyed a bloody mary and two Bud Lights.  This was a huge change in the choices I would have previously made.  I would have come up with a million reasons to go way overboard.  For example, I would have had nachos and 4 margaritas.  Victory by making better choices!

Saturday started with my niece Sydney joining for a sleepover and we decided to go swimming, Paul is still sick with his cold so this meant me going alone with the gals.  I'm self-conscience in my swimsuit, but I knew the girls would be disappointed with not going.  I wasn't able to swim laps but my time spent watching girls and swimming with them kept me on my toes.  We were exhausted by the time we left.  Victory by overcoming my self consciousness in a swimsuit without Paul.

So here's where it gets really good.  This morning after making Hannah and Sydney fun shaped pancakes, we were ready to head out to they gym.  Paul who loves working out is still under the weather and wasn't up for working out yet.  I had a choice, go alone or skip.  I choose to go alone and left Paul and the gals home to play.  My goal today was to get an 8 mile bike in 30 minutes and a 1 mile jog/walk in under 17.  I got on the bike and I kicked BUTT!   I closed my eyes, focused on the music and just pedaled away.  I did all 8 miles in 25 minutes.  OH YEAH, 25 minutes.  I almost shouted in triumph because I was so thrilled, but I was panting so hard it would have never come out.  My smile was from ear to ear.  I hobbled over to the treadmill shaking and told myself it was okay.  One foot in front of the other, one step at a time, I could do it.  So there I was starting to jog on the treadmill.  I did intervals of jogging and fast walking and never let the treadmill go lower then 3.5, I wasn't able to jog the whole time, but guess what else?  I did a mile in 16 minutes, OH YEAH!!!   Last year, I could only do a mile in 20 minutes.  I did it in 16 minutes after doing 8 miles on the bike in 25 minutes.   I wiped down my machines and stretched on the floor.  As I sat soaking in sweat basking in my accomplishment of the day, I heard a little voice.  Do you remember when a candy bar was calling me from my candy jar?  Well this time, it was the elliptical.  It told me it was feeling left out, it reminded me how much I love working out on it.  It was confused why I would only show my love to the bike and the treadmill.  So I got up and got on the elliptical.  I told myself I would give it 10 minutes of attention and then head home.  Ten minutes later, I just couldn't stop, I love seeing those calories add up so fast so I decided to keep at it for 10 more minutes.  After that I was so close to finishing what's another 15 minutes?  I burned about 700 calories at the gym today.  VICTORY!!!!  Victory because I didn't make excuses on why not to go to the gym.  Victory because I nailed the bike and treadmill!  Victory because I pushed thru all the mental barriers and kept moving forward.  Victory because my mindset is changing.  Oh yeah, it was a great weekend!

Unstoppable VICTORIOUS Mariah

Friday, February 4, 2011

Oh what a change

Happy Friday to everyone.  I’m feeling very excited and optimistic about the weekend.   I’m going to buy a new swimsuit for my mini tri, something to hold everything in once place J  We are heading out to the pool Saturday to get swimming laps in as well as the gym Sunday to get my biking and treadmill in.   My little niece Sydney is coming for a sleepover and Belle is thrilled.  It’s going to be a FANTASTIC weekend.

My candy jar as been too much of a temptation for me, so I decided to change it.  Today I filled by candy jar with . . . . carrots.  Yes, bright, orange, crispy, cool, happy carrots!  I put a small bag of ice on the bottom to keep them cool.  It was fun to see the reaction of people when they saw my new candy jar filling.  I think I may stick with this new approach.  I have no guilt when I reach to grab a carrot.  I think cauliflower would be a good choice for Monday.  Some of my co-workers tease me that I’ll lose takers, but that just means more veggies for me!   

Paul and I made the best dinner last night, we made our own version on chicken cordon blue.  We took a little mozzarella cheese, wrapped it in a slice of lean ham and rolled a flatten chicken breast around it.   For the coating I had a grand time smashing special K cereal and mixing in a few dry spices.  We rolled the chicken in the crumbs and then baked it.  HEAVEN!  Hannah even loved it.   It’s been really fun finding new “fresher” recipes to make as a family.  Paul is so helpful in the kitchen and I’m finding my love of cooking that I had lost for awhile.  It’s great making meals that don’t come out of a box. 

Wish me luck finding a swimsuit this weekend J

Unstoppable Veggie Gal Mariah

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Great Debate, to Tri or not to Tri

My fellow Triathlete friend Michelle sent our team an invitation to an indoor Tri that takes place February 13th.  They have a Mini Sprint Triathlon that consists of a 400yd swim, 8mi bike, and a 1 mile run.  The great part is that it's all indoors, the scary part is I don’t feel quite ready.  So my great debate, am I up for the challenge?  Looking at the legs individually I know I can do them, it’s when you put them all together that gets me nervous.  It would be a great opportunity to see everyone and help continue to keep me excited for the triathlons this summer.   So no more debating, I’m going to do it.  Heck you only live once right?!   Another bonus, no snowy darn hills (sorry Angela, but poor butt finally recovered today, I couldn’t sit without wincing for over 3 days)!

My buddy Jason is getting me hooked up with a device that is very similar to what they use on the biggest loser.  I think he’s afraid I’ll really throw my Wii board out the window.  To be honest it’s a valid concern some days.  So this nifty little device looks amazing and I’m confident that this additional tool will help me reach my goals.  It’s called the Bodymedia Fit Armband (  I’m so excited to try it out and learn more about how many calories I burn a day, how many steps I take, how well I’m sleeping at night etc.  It does require logging your food accurately and diligently, but I'm committed to doing that knowing it will help me with the results.  I had some hesitation at first wondering the reaction of people when I’m wearing an armband.  I wondered what the armband would say those around me, “she’s too stupid to do it without it”, “the fat girl needs help”, “she takes this too seriously”, or “what the heck is that thing?”.  Guess what I realized?   I don’t think I care what other people think.  So what if I use an amazing tool to get me the results I want?  It seems like when you changing your life and making healthy choices there are always those out there that will watch you like a hawk.  They  watch you to make sure you are making the choices they think are right or they want you to slip up so they don’t feel bad about making bad choices themselves.   I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked if I can eat this or that on my “diet”.  I’m not on a diet, I’m participating in life.  I don’t have restrictions, I make decisions (thank you Jen,  Yes, I can eat cake, I won’t often, but when my birthday comes I’ll eat a slice.  Yes, I can eat pizza, but no I won’t eat 5 pieces.  Instead I will have a big salad with it.  It’s all about better choices and balance.  So once I get my new Bodymedia Fit Armband, I will wear it proudly and say “I’m cubby and proud!”.  Okay maybe I won’t say that, but I won’t be ashamed of who I am and what I need to be successful.  I’ll be proud that I can overcome the negative thoughts in my head and make the right choices for myself. 

Tonight I need to find a few new goals, I’ve been putting it off.  I’ll write down a schedule of working out to help me for my February 13th mini Sprint.  I’ll share them with you later tonight or tomorrow.  By the way,  I almost made all of my previously set goals, I missed one day of food journaling but I tried to make up for it by going to the gym Sunday putting working out a 4 times instead of 3.

Unstoppable Trier Mariah