Friday, October 29, 2010

Remember me?

LOL I cannot tell you how sorry I am for blogging so sporatically! It seems I do well with blogging, and then some other part of my life falls to the wayside. So I stop blogging in order to pick up the pieces of the chaos that has occurred and here I am...a month later....posting a blog. I really do appreciate you following this blog...you are more faithfal than I am! lol

It has been a rough and busy couple of weeks. It all started with the flu. One Friday night my two older kids came home from spending a few hours with grandma and all was well. Approximately 2 hours later as we all had just headed to bed, my son (who had stated that his stomach wasn't feeling too well) darted to the bathroom and the throwing up began. While I checking on him, my youngest comes downstairs to announce that "sissy" is throwing up upstairs in her room. I thought she was joking because she had never mentioned not feeling well. Upon arriving in her doorway, I witnessed firsthand that Allie was most definately telling the truth. As my wonderful hubby visited the Land of Nod, I cleaned up vomit from all over the toilet and off the bedroom carpet, then proceeded to shampoo the carpet. I have never wanted to Lysol my entire body like I did that night! And yes, hubby slept through the entire thing. (Why is it that God gave that ability soley to men anyways?)

After the puke-fest, everyone slept peacefully and felt better come morning. The following night, we went to a friend's house along with 3 other couples who were mutual friends for dinner and a night of intense laughter. The next morning is when IT arrived. By IT I mean Creeping Death. It started with Kailyn throwing up again, then my husband, then myself. It was NOT fun, nor was it pretty. Three of the 5 Snyders were down for the count and there was only one thing left to do: Call for backup...aka my mother. When my mom arrived, she found Jeremiah on the couch, and Kailyn and I camped outside the bathroom moaning. Did I mention I love my mother? We were pathetic. lol She ended up spending the night with us and by morning we were able to keep some toast down thank goodness. It took me a good 4 days before I felt somewhat back to normal. I would not wish that flu on anyone. The worst part of it all, is that of the 3 families we visited the night before, at least 1 family contracted the same illness. I hope and pray they invite us the next time they have a gathering! lol

The weekend after the Snyder Flu Epidemic, we took a long weekend vaca to West Virginia that was really nice. It was much needed, but certainly not long enough! We drove through the mountains (where I once again started feeling ill, but not due to a virus...mainly due to my slight fear of heights lol) While we were there, my husband started experiencing some pain in his knee and developed a bump that was getting redder and more painful as the weekend went on. By Tuesday he was limping. A friend of his stopped by and looked at it and told him he needed to go to the ER. Long story short, it was a staph infection. He received a Rx and is now feeling better. I thank God for that friend convincing him to seek medical attention, because he sure wasn't listening to me when I'd say the same thing!

This week seemed to be pretty uneventful until Wednesday, when I received a call from my mother saying that my grandma was not doing well and I'd better come now if I wanted to see her alive. By the time I arrived at her house, she had perked up a bit and we had a nice visit. Since then she has had a good day following by a bad day today. Hospice has said that she will probably not make it to see the holidays. I feel so overwhelmed by it all. I want to spend time with her, yet I hate seeing her this way. I want to learn from her wisdom and hear memories from her childhood, yet she is so confused most of the time nowadays that I feel like the window of opportunity for those things has passed. It saddens me. She has been my grandma for 31 years but there's so much about her I don't know. I want her to leave a legacy for me and my kids. It is also sad to see my mother having to going through losing both of her parents in a 6-month time period. I cannot imagine what she is going through right now. And I don't know how to help her.

So that is what has been going on in my life and why I haven't written in a month. On a good note, hubby and I celebrated our 11th anniversary on the 23rd and had a nice evening of wine tasting and dinner, followed by a trip to Walmart. Romantic, huh? lol I used to look at anniversaries as something that are a given. As newlyweds, we'd talk about what we would do on our 5th anniversary, our 10th, as if nothing could stop those special days from coming. Since having gone though some hard times in our marriage, I now look at each anniversary as a priviledge and with thanksgiving. God has blessed us with another year together and I am so thankful they He is restoring us a bit more each year.

Another high point in my life involves my goat. She is due to have babies any day (although I've been thinking that for the past month) and I cannot wait to meet those little goatlings! Each day I eagerly visit her pen to look for signs that she may deliver soon. I do this so often that I think I will go insane from analying her belly, rear, actions...anything really. And there are some days that I'm certain that she's not pregnant at all. So hopefully I will be able to announce that they've been born on my next post!

And I'm still running! My running buddy Jenny and I are trying to conjure up a winter running wardrobe...and we are REFUSING to wear TIGHTS. End of story. My current weight is around 172, which means I've lost a total of 13 lbs! I'm still not satisfied with my progress, but people are starting to notice the changes in my figure, which is always nice! And I actually had to shop for new jeans since mine were all too big! And I'm proud to say that I tried on a pair of size 12s and they fit great! I'm starting to feel skinny! I am planning to run another 5K in two weeks, which will be my third one in three months! Go me!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Where has the time gone?

This week is flying by! I can't believe it's already Thursday. And the worst part is that I really don't feel like I've accomplished very much at all and it just makes me frustrated. I always seem to have a mile-long to-do list of which nothing gets crossed off. Have you ever felt that way? When I haven't crossed anything off that list, I tend to feel crappy about myself. It's silly. When I sit back and relflect on what I did this whole week and what made me busy, I see:

1. Monday - worked on bookkeeping and dinner prep in the morning, and ran some errands for hubby in the afternoon. Also shopped for new workout clothes while I was in town. I ran in the evening.

2. Tuesday - worked for the business all morning, did some dinner prep, made lunch, then met two friends for the afternoon. Also went to the chiropractor.

3. Wednesday - tried to get caught up with laundry (my dryer is broken and I have to hang all of my clothes outside to dry), did mass quantities of dishes all day long, made a snack for small group today, made breakfast muffins. Also visited with my MIL over lunch here, and tidied and vacuumed the living room, swept and mopped the kitchen, bathroom, and foyer floors. Also helped hubby do invoicing in the afternoon. I then made dinner, and went for a run.

After looking that the details of my "busy-ness", I realize that I HAVE accomplished things! I've nurtured my marriage, my children, and my friendships. I have also nurtured myself. I guess I've been busy doing good things. My goal is to now start finding joy in those daily mundane tasks! lol

Now that that is all off of my chest, I will give you an update on my weight loss journey. Last week I weighed in at 178, and this Monday my weight was 176.8, so I'm down 1.2 lbs! Not as much as I was hoping for, but I am still struggling to get my eating under control...not that I eat too much...just that I tend to eat junk in carb form instead of the fruit and veggie options that are sitting in the fridge for me to enjoy! I am noticing that all of my clothes are getting too big. And just yesterday I put a pair of capris and a pair of shorts into the Goodwill bag because they are too big and just plain annoying! If I keep them around, it's like I'm telling myself that I MAY need them in the future when I gain the weight back...AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN!

I talked to a couple over the weekend who, a year ago, had been enjoying a healthy eating lifestyle of no flour, no sugar. The husband had lost 50 lbs and felt great, and the wife had lost some weight too. I had not seen them since last year, so I asked them how things were going and they admitted that they'd fallen off the bandwagon. But they were planning to start again on Nov 1...after football season, because the husband is a football coach. They also admitted that just feel yucky because of the unhealthy foods they are eating. The wife even admitted that her gall bladder has been hurting again...and the pain had completely gone away when they were eating healthy foods! They also had more energy and could sleep better. Although I was elated to hear they were recommtting themselves, I found myself wondering, "why wait until Nov 1?" Why not make the choice to start TODAY? I want to find an eating style that is a LIFEstyle. When LIFE gets in the way, I can still eat the same way.... there is no Plan B. I can't imagine choosing an eating style that you know makes you feel worse, have less energy, and in some cases, more pain. But then again, here I am eating unhealthy foods every day...but yet, I haven't experienced the benefits of healthy eating because I've never done it. It's time to take my own advice and start TODAY!

As far as my exercising goes, Jenny and I have decided to incorporate 1-2 longer runs each week. We normally run 3 miles for our short run (who would have thought I'd ever call 3 MILES a short run?! lol) For our long runs, we plan to run either 4 or 5 miles!! I'm really hoping the number on the scale continues to go down with our increased mileage. We have also decided to run another 5K next Saturday. This one is described as having "a competive course, with rolling hills and beautiful scenery." Translation: it is going to be difficult! We have decided to not really run it to win, but just to run it. We will run together and at a slower pace than the last 5K we ran.

With that being said, I need to wrap this post up and get going on my day. I've been up since 5:30 am and have currently baked 14 dozen monster cookies! And yes, I've eaten about 8 of them. ugh

Thursday, September 23, 2010

We have lots of things to talk about!

Well, I haven't posted anything in two days...and I'm not really sure why. I guess I've just been busy. Tuesday I went grocery shopping with a friend. I got lots of great deals, which is always fun! I love the feeling of having stocked cupboards..it's like the cooking possiblities are endless! When grocery shop, I plan out my menu for two weeks, make a list and buy what I need for those two weeks' worth of meals. (I do go to the store of the off-week if we need produce or milk). I have felt like I've been in a cooking slump lately and I'm really tired of the same old meals. On Sunday night, I sat down with a few choice cookbooks and decided to make all new meals these next two weeks! As I try a new recipe, I will let you know which ones were good...and I'm sure I'll write about which ones were not so good too. lol As I type this, I'm waiting for my new breakfast recipe to be finished baking. This morning I made Egg Muffins and I'm really excited to see how they turn out! Basically they are like little western omelets baked in a mini-muffin tin. It felt good to chop up all these fresh veggies to put into our breakfast! To me, breakfast is either fruit, cereal, or milk...not VEGGIES. But I need to incorporate more veggies into my diet, so I'm excited to have found one way to do that!

Update: I just took the egg muffins out of the oven and tried one...and they are pretty good! I think I would like to make them in the larger muffin tin though....they are pretty small! Here is the recipe:

2 whole eggs
6 egg whites
about 1/4 cup each: sweet onion diced, button mushroom diced, green bell pepper diced, tomatoes diced
1 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp real bacon bits (I used turkey bacon)
non-stick olive oil spray
Kosher salt & pepper
Dried parsley for garnish

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Dice all veggies and set aside. Crack eggs in med bowl and set aside. Mix the Parm cheese and bacon together in a small bowl; set aside. Hat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add all veggies and sprinkle with salt and pepper; sweat for a few mins until soft and the flavors merge. Beat the eggs with a little salt and pepper. Spray a 24-cup mini muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. Place about 1 tbsp egg mixture in each muffin cup. You will have some left over.

Scoop about 1/2 tbsp of the cooked veggie mixture into each muffin cup. Using the rest of the egg mixture, top off the muffin cups making each one about even. Sprinkle the cheese bacon mixture on top.

Bake for 10 mins; remove from oven and sprinkle with parsley for garnish. Run a butter knife/toothpick around the edges of each muffin before removing from the pan.

Nutritional facts for 1 serving (6 mini egg muffins):
Fat - 4g
Calories - 85
Fiber - 1g

All in all, these are a healthy way to incorporate more veggies in your breakfast!! I even had a bit of cooked veggies left over, so I combined them with the egg yolks and some milk to make a batch of scrambled eggs for hubby! No wasting food here today! lol

Ok, confession time. Yesterday I slacked off on my healthy eating a bit. My meals were decently healthy, but I snacked way too much. Thanks to my grocery shopping this week, our snack cupboard is full of goodies! Not necessarily anything horrible to snack on...but I just ate too many snacks in general. Our electricity was off for 2 hrs yesterday, so as I sat a book, I snacked. And I felt horrible afterwards! I really felt yucky the rest of the evening. It's amazing how different you feel when you put good things into your body! Yesterday I also didn't not get a run in. It looked like it was going to rain, so my running buddy and I decided it would be best to cancel last night's run. Honestly, I didn't feel the greatest and I knew that running would be difficult b/c of that fact.

On the flip side...there were some good things that happened yesterday! First of all I got my very first massage! It was wonderful! I have been having issues with my right collarbone/rib/shoulder area and the chiropractor recommended that I get a massage...boy was I thrilled to hear that!! I have been wanting to get one for quite some time, but could never justify spending the money on myself. Now that I've had one, I am a firm believer in getting them whenever you can! I didn't have the normal massage, but one that concentrated on the area I've been having issue with...but it was still great! I am convinced that my hubby or a close friend of mine who go to massage therapy school...mainly so I can get them whenever I want and for free! Any volunteers? lol

After my massage I stopped by the local thrift store. I like to stop by every now and then to see if I can find some nice jeans or shirts. This time I found neither, but I came home with 4 books that I'm really excited about! The one that I started reading yesterday is called, "Perfect Weight" by Jordan Rubin. He is the author of "The Maker's Diet". I started reading that book a few years ago and just could not get into it at all. But last weekend a neighbor stopped over and somehow we started talking about his son who had had health problems and the doctors gave him no hope for improvement. After a ton of prayer and research, they started making changes in their diet and started eating wholesome foods. (think health food store types of foods) This just baffled me. It's so funny how God works in our lives because I have really been wanting to make a change in my eating and really wanting to rid our house of prepackaged foods, etc, but not really having the knowledge of HOW to do it. And here my neighbor is, in my yard, telling us that they eating nothing but whole foods....and I never suspected it! When you feel God nudging you to do something but you don't know how to do it, just pray that He will send the materials or the right person to you to educate you! Anyways...he recommended Rubin's book and said that they used certain parts of that book in their lives, along with other information, and their son started getting better! When I came across the Perfect Weight book, I knew I had to get it! So far, it's been a really good read! Mainly Rubin would like to educate people on how to change their lives and stop the obestiy crisis in America. In this particular book, he went to Toledo to start a healthy living campaign of sorts. I can't wait to keep reading and find out all about it! I should also add that Rubin himself experienced first hand how what you eat can change your live...and even save it! He was suffering from health problems when he was a young adult and even was down to 110lbs and the nurses and doctors didn't think he's make it through the night, then started eating whole foods and now lives a normal life. It's just amazing. Literally what most of us eat is not really food at all, but fake food if you will. It's full of chemicals and has been put through so many processes that it no longer contains any nutrition. Eating food like this over long periods of time has got to have negative effects on our bodies...with obesity being just one of them. And with obestiy comes a ton of other health problems. The statistics in Rubin's book are just shocking to me. Here are a few: 2/3 of American adults age 20 years of older are overweight (defined by having a BMI of 25 or higher), and the number of those who are extremely obese (at least 100 lbs overweight) has quadrupled since the 1980's. If people keep gaining weight at the current pace, US researchers at John Hopkins University predict that 75% of US adults will be overweight (and 41% obese) by 2015, which is just around the corner.

Obesity really is an epidemic. And unfortunately, Americans just tend to accept their obesity instead of deciding to live healthier lives. Rubin even writes about a company who manufactures larger scaled furniture to accomodate people who weigh up to 700lbs!

I hope Rubin's book continues to shock, encourage, and inform me...and I will pass that information on to you too!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

YIKES!

I'm up and ready to face the day. Before stepping in the shower I decided to hop on the scale because I just feel...well, skinny. I can't explain it, but the past day or so I have just felt like my body is thinner...mainly because of the way my clothes fit. So I step on the scale and brace myself for the momet of truth...and it says 174.6! YIKES! That is down 3.4 lbs from yesterday morning's weigh in! Yes, I realize that this very well could be too good to be true, but I'm totally using it as motivation to keep moving in the right direction! The true weigh-in will be next Monday, where I'm hoping to see at least 177 in order to stay on target with my Nov 30th goal.

This week my workout plans are as follows:
Monday - run 30 mins - done
Tuesday - walk 30 mins
Wednesday - Run 30 mins
Thursday - walk 30 mins
Friday - walk 30 mins
Saturday - run 30 mins
Sunday - run 30+ mins (not sure yet how long we will run)

I would also like to do some strength training on the days that I walk. I read somewhere that strength training can make you 10-30% more efficient with your running. Oh yeah...and Jenny and I have decided that we are going to run another 5K on October 9th...one with "rolling hills and beautiful scenery"...which means it won't be flat or easy! But we are up for the challenge.

Ok, I've rambled on enough this morning! It's time to feed the kiddos their breakfast and corral them to the bus. Then I'm heading out to meet a friend so we can get some great coupon deals on groceries! I'll let you know how I did!

Monday, September 20, 2010

A Successful Day 1!

I'm still breathing after a BUSY day...so I would call that successful indeed! The girls are in the tub so I thought I would give you a quick update on my progress for the day. All in all it was a good day! I didn't accomplish as much as I'd like to around the house, but I got quite a bit accomplished for hubby's business as well as the errands I needed to get done. I did well with my eating too. My eating is where I really struggle normally. I just sort of graze all day or mindlessly eat...most of which are carbs. I still ate some carbs today although overall I ate less than I normally would. For breakfast I wasn't all that hungry, so I drank a chocolate Slim-Fast shake. For a late morning snack, I had an apple. For lunch I wasn't hungry much either, but managed to develop enough appetite to devour two whole wheat chocolate chip muffins. (I think they are by Duncan Hines...and ULTRA yummy btw) Before I knew it, it was time to head to town to pick the kids...who were famished, so I gave in to a moment of weakness and found myself in the drive-thru at McD's...where I proceeded to order McDoubles for everyone...along with waters. lol No, I should not have had a sandwich, however I justified it by telling myself that I hadn't had any lunch to speak of. When we got home we all had dinner, which was cornbread and brown beans & ham. Then I went for a 30 minute run...and here I am! Tomorrow I am going to get groceries with a friend, so my plan is to stock the house with lots of wholesome fruits and veggies.

I realized that I didn't post today's weigh-in in my earlier post today. The scale reported 178 lbs. Not proud of that number, but it is 8 lbs less than my starting weight last November. so no complaints here. The last couple of months I have managed to hover between 175 & 178, which is very frustrating at times. My lowest weigh since last November is 173, so I would love to see 170-172 eventually! My wonderful husband continues to remind me that if I lose the weight slowly then I will keep it off...but man, I was really hoping to reach my goal weight by the 1 year anniversary of my weight loss journey. I still have 2 1/2 months, but I am not sure that is enough time to lose 33 lbs (right now my goal weight is 145). Maybe I should set an anniversary goal weight....how about 168? That means I will need to lose 2 lbs in Sept, 4 lbs in October, and 4 lbs in November (btw - I started on Nov 30th). I think that is doable!! I will keep you posted on my progress!

Alright...my girls are probably prunes, so it's time to sign off for the night and get them washed and tucked into bed. Thanks for listening to my ramblings!! :)

Here I Come...The New ME!

Yes, it has been FOREVER since my last post. I apologize. Not sure what happened, but I guess I just lost interest or the energy...I guess it doesn't really matter. I'm back!!! I decided yesterday that I am going to start blogging faithfully. Why, you ask? Mainly because I need accountibility....I need your input...and, oh yeah, I think it will be FUN! God has created me to be a creative person (I guess I take after my Father, huh? lol) and I think this may just be a nice little outlet with which I can use my creativity!

Here's the deal...I'm stuck with my weight loss and it's my own darn fault. I've gotten into a run with cooking and with eating and I just have not really cared if my consumption has been healthy or not. The flip side to my story is that I've been running since April of this year. When I say running, I mean running...2-3 miles 3-4 times a week. I started running because a friend of mine wanted to run a 5K but didn't want to do it alone. So I volunteered myself as her running buddy. A 5K was so far out of reach for me that I honestly needed HER in order to run it myself! Long story short, she wasn't able to run it with her busy schedule, and by that time I was halfway into the training, so I stuck to it. And God did an amazing thing during this time...He brought me another a running buddy! One that lives close by and who had already ran a 5K race...and the rest is history. We've been running together faithfully and just two days ago I ran my first 5K race. It was a tremendous feeling of accomplishment! I had run 3.1 miles prior to the race and had done so in 32 mins. My original goal for the race was to do it in 30 mins, but sort of gave up on that goal because I didn't feel like it was realistic. As I was running the race, I kept thinking about how it felt like I was running so slow and wondering what my time would be, etc...and then I saw the finishline....and the close set up beside the finishline. And it read 29:50!! That was the only motivation I needed, so I started sprinting towards the finishline with a vengeance! I did not want to see that clock say 30 mins! I ended up finishing in 29:56! Once I could breathe again, I was really proud of myself! lol

Now that my Run-A-5K-Race Goal has been met, it's time for a new goal! My new running goal is to run a 10K in that same race a year from now, but in the meantime, my current goal is to shed these unwanted pounds and reach my ideal weight (although not sure what that is right now). And I want to be healthy. I want to learn what REAL healthy is...not what magazines or commercials tell us. I want to be physically, mentally, and spiritually healthy. Hey...and why not add financially healthy to that list too? And I would like to include you on my journey. I am no Wonder Woman...I am an average gal with an average life and the average struggles. It is my prayer that through my blog, I can motivate and encourage you to be the best you can be for who YOU were created to be as well. What I mean is, strive to be who God made YOU to be and do it well!

So...what can you expect from my blog? First of all...pictures! Pictures of me as I lose this weight (notice I didn't say IF!!), pictures of random things that happen in my life. I've realized that just looking at all of this text can get quite boring! Now that I am typing this, I realize that I don't even know how to post pictures on this blog...I will have to figure that one out. lol Secondly, RECIPES! I am going to be trying LOTS of new recipes and will post any faves along the way. Thirdly, I will allow you to glimpse what is going on in this crazy head of mine. Maybe it will be more than you care to know! I plan to post how I am feeling, what I am eating, my workouts, my current weight, spiritual findings that has opened my eyes and enlightened me, any awesome coupon deals I come across and anything funny that occurs in my life (again, notice I didn't say IF). Funny things happen to me all the time...I guess it's God's way of not letting me get bored with my life! lol

Wow, this post is getting to be quite long already. Time to wrap it up, I guess! Today is going to be my first official day of becoming healthy. I am going to try to be conscious of what I am eating and to make healthy food choices. I am going to tackle my to-do list for today, which means doing some work in the garage for my hubby's biz, trying to learn our new accounting software, putting dinner in the crockpot (brown beans, ham, and cornbread...can't wait!!), hanging laundry on the line (our dryer is currently broken, so my prayers for rain have ceased until I can get caught up), picking up the kids from school, heading to the bank to make a deposit and sign loan papers (we are refinancing and cutting 9 years off of our mortgage...as well as over $60,000 in interest...all for the same payment we have now!), then take Evan to his hair cut appt. After all of that, we'll come home, eat dinner, do homework, and then I am going to run with Jenny at 7. Then back home, get the kids bathed and into bed. Whew what a day!

Friday, April 30, 2010

Coming down off of Cloud Nine...

I just read my last post and it amazes me that that was my life just a month and a half ago. Since then, I have had nonstop trials and events happen in my life. It started when my grandpa had a heart attack and was admitted into the hospital. While he was there, he had another two heart attacks. He was there for almost two weeks. This was a hard blow for me. You see, my grandpa has always had a special place in my heart. He is an amazing man so full of love for people and for Jesus. He has spent the majority of his life preaching the gospel and leading people to Christ. His health has really gone downhill over the past ten years, but he continues to preach wherever he goes.

When I got the news of his heart attack, I was panicked. I hadn't seen him in over a year...and was afraid that I wouldn't get the chance to tell him goodbye and that I loved him. My last visit to my grandparent's house was a great one. We laughed and they really enjoyed the kids. Then my grandma went into the hospital. She fell while she was there and ended up with a head injury. She hasn't been the same. Not only is she now in a wheelchair, but she also has problems with dementia and weird behaviors due to the head injury. I didn't want to see her that way...I wanted to remember her the way she was during our last visit. I ended up visiting my grandpa three times while he was in the hospital, each time preparing myself for that being the last time I would see him this side of heaven. We had a nice time visiting and I listened as he told stories from his childhood. The time I spent with him was priceless. He ended up being released from the hospital and is doing fairly well now, however his doctors say that a massive heart attack is inevitable for him. Through this, I learned how much I had let fear creep into my life. I had let fear keep me from visiting my grandparents and it almost stole my chance to tell my grandpa goodbye. I vowed not to let this happen again.

During the time my grandpa was in the hospital, my tooth started hurting. I was in tremendous pain. I took a round of antibiotics and then, after 1 1/2 weeks of misery, had my tooth pulled. I immediately started getting a terrible sore throat and cough, which lead to me coughing for a minimum of 1 hour each night (sometimes 2!) before getting to sleep. During this time I turned 31, which means I am no longer close to my 30's! lol Three days after my birthday, I receive a call from my hubby saying that my mom had called him to tell him that my grandma was found dead in her home that morning. My step-dad had gone to pick her up for a doctor's appointment and found her. Tremendous guilty crept into my life. I had not seen this grandma for over a year either. I loved her, but never felt like I could meet up to her expectations, so I sort of just stayed away. I wasn't mad at her, just hurt because I didn't feel accepted by her. I received a beautiful birthday card from her just 5 days before she died about how I was such a great granddaughter. When I read it, I thought that my dad must have picked it out for her (he was doing a lot of her shopping before she died) because I didn't think that was how she really felt about me. After her death I found out that she had in fact picked out that card herself. So that entire week while we made arrangements and awaited her burial, I really struggled with a lot of guilt. Did my grandma think that I cared about her? Why did I rob her of the chance of seeing her only great-grandchildren? Were my feelings of unacceptance real or just imagined? I will never know now because I once again let fear keep me from facing the situation head on. I should have been confident in who I was, who God made me to be, and spend the last year or so with my grandma, getting to know her more. But instead I let Satan win. And he robbed me of ever doing just that. So night after night when my coughing kept me from sleeping, I was haunted by my guilt and shame. At some point, I had to overcome this and ask God for forgiveness, and learn from my mistakes...again.

Her funeral service really was beautiful and I know she would have been pleased. As we laid her to rest, I also laid to rest my guilt about the past. I learned a powerful lesson through her death. It really is important to live each day as it were your last, or your husband's last or whoever is important to you. Not in a morbid, sad sense, but in a sense that you don't have regrets once they are gone. You didn't have just good intentions...you had actions that followed them. After the funeral, my family went back to my parents house for dinner. While we were there, we spent hours looking through my grandmother's old photos of her childhood and her mother, and even her grandmother. I learned a lot of things about her that day. I read her diary and how each day she talked about what food she ate and what she was cooking. My grandmother was an amazing cook. But she could also be quite critical when eating at a restaurant or even at your house. lol I realized how much she really enjoyed cooking and eating good food. Any maybe her ways of showing it weren't too constructive, I think she meant well. She also really like nice things. Each year we were always a nervous wreck about what to get her for Christmas that would be good enough and she would approve of. Through spending that time with my family looking at photos and newspaper clippings, I realized that my grandma had come from a well-to-do family and was used to having nice things when she was growing up. She married my grandpa who was poor and pretty much lived her adult life living poorer than what she was used to. So what I saw as being judgemental or even a bit arrogant in my grandmother, really was just from how she was raised. I went home that night feeling like I actually knew and understood my grandma. I wish she would have taken the time to show me her true self while she was living because I think it would have helped me understand her actions more.

After all of that happened, I was well for 2 days...then started getting cold like symptoms once again...which again robbed me of my sleep. By Monday, I think everything started catching up with me...I was a mess. I was exhausted, irritable, and depressed. Right now, my schedule is a nightmare with baseball practices and games, trying to help Evan finish up his 3rd grade year, starting my own business as a Tastefully Simple consultant, and just trying to keep up with all the rest: laundry, cooking, cleaning, breaking up fights, etc. I am feeling better now thankfully. Yesterday I started a 30 Day 5 Minute Mom coaching series by an author that I love...and it is helping me to change my outlook on my life. I have realized that I have become a not-so-much-fun-person-to-be-around as a mom. I am so busy trying to get through the day that I miss the opportunities to read to my children, play with them, give them a hug. Yes, my life it out of control right now, but I'm working on turning it around. There is more to life than housework and my to-do list. It's time to learn how to play again and be a child. Why is that so hard for adults to do?

In the midst of my chaotic past two months, I have managed to lose a total of 13 lbs! I'm finally to the point where people are noticing my weight loss, and those little comments sprinkled here and there certainly help to keep me motivated! All my clothes are getting annoyingly big, which means there is some shopping in my future! (you won't hear me complain about that!) I have also decided that I am going to run a 5K this fall with a friend. I had been thinking I might want to...mainly to just prove to myself that I can, but didn't want to do it alone. Just today I finished up Week 3 of my Couch To 5K training program and I am so proud! By using that program, I should be ready for a 5K in another 7 weeks, but will continue to train until September. Maybe I'll run a 5K before then...who knows! The possibilites are endless! And cool thing is that anyone who runs will tell you that the extra pounds WILL come off when you start running, so my goal is two-fold...to train for and complete a 5K race in September, and also to be at my goal weight of 145ish by then too! Only 28 more lbs to go!

Running a race is alot like life. I have found that if you run too fast, you will become exhausted too quickly and more than likely will not be able to finish. If you run too slow, you never really reach your full potential and miss the benefits along the way. To be successful, you need to find your pace. I said YOUR pace. Not your friend's pace or whoever else you are racing with. Once you find your pace, you will be able to run without getting too tired. That's how God intends us to run this race called LIFE. He doesn't want us to speed ahead because he knows we'll be overwhelmed and exhausted and give up due to burnout. Yet, he doesn't want us to run half-heartedly, with no purpose, and not stretching ourselves outside of our comfort zone. He wants us to find our pace, which is ultimately His pace for us, and run with purpose. There is a finish line ahead and He wants us all to be winners! We will win, as long as we let him train and coach us along the way!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Time to Apologize...

Yes, I fell off the blogging wagon. I was politely reminded at chuch last week by a fellow reader that I had not posted since Jan 22nd. I have to admit, that date shocked me....didn't I post just yesterday? I guess not. But since she has been waiting patiently every day since my last post, (and because I PROMISED her that I would post a blog last week...and forgot) the time has come to give you an update. And an apology. An apology to Kim (names may or may not have been changed to protect the reader's privacy...lol) for not posting a blog last week like I promised, and to the rest of you for not posting anything in over a month.

Since my last post, my weight loss journey has been somewhat uneventful. I've tried exercising more, wanting to exercise less (and some days being successful), counting calories, and eating pretty much whatever I've wanted. I think when I do reach my goal weight I should right a book because I'm starting to feel like an expert on what doesn't work! My body confuses me. It seems like when I watch what I eat and try to cut back, I gain weight. And when I eat pizza, drink pop, have dinner at Chili's, and treat myself to two bowls of vanilla ice cream with homemade hot fudge sauce (don't be too scared, they were consumed on two different days), I lose weight. The before mentioned diet was consumed this past weekend. I didn't exercise at all, spend a lot of my time sitting, and ate all of those non-diet foods...and woke up to a 7.2 lb weight loss. What is up with that? Of course I'm not complaining...just in shock. I don't deserve to reach a new weight loss low after my nutritional sins. But I'll take it nonetheless! lol

In addition to me reaching a new lowest weight since Nov 30th, a lot of other really cool things have happened in my life. The best way to describe it is to say that it seems as if the puzzle pieces of my life are starting to fit together. The main area is my marriage. Hubby and I have been married for 10 1/2 yrs. The last 3 yrs have been the hardest of them all. We have struggled. Alot. We really started making progress last summer and things gradually started getting better. Just recently, though, our marriage has turned from average to amazing. We still have room for improvement, but we both feel as if we have the tools we need to keep up on the right track. It only took us 10 yrs to discover those tools and to utilize them! We have learned to truly communicate with one another, to support each other, and to love one another despite our faults. It has revolutionized our marriage. We also have been attending the Alpha Marriage Course, and that has played a vital role in our marriage makeover. We love it! We have had 6 weekly date nights so far and we really look forward to them each week. I think we'll be a bit spoiled once the course is over!

I'm just amazed at what God is doing in my life. I literally am in awe. I used to look at other people's marriages and think, "When will mine be like that?" "When will my husband be understanding like that?" And here I am...living proof that God is a miracle-worker. I am learning not to underestimate what God can do!

So the reason why I haven't blogged in forever is because I'm on cloud nine! I'm soaking in every minute of my life right now, thanking God every step of the way. My weight loss has taken a back seat I guess. Weight loss isn't going to make me happy. True happiness is living out the life that God has for us every day. Sure, weight loss can be a part of that, but it can't be the only part. When we focus on our weight, we are only focusing on the moment...stuck on our imperfections or flabby thighs and thinking that there's no hope, that it will never change. But when we focus on Him, He leads us down the path to true happiness. And who knows, while we're walking with Him, maybe we'll lose a few inches off our thighs too! lol

Friday, January 22, 2010

Just when you think you can't...

Since my last blog, I decided to kick it up a notch. I have become a bit lazy in my workouts...doing my time just to say I did. This week I started kicking my own tail. I started sweating again. On Tuesday, I had a busy morning so I didn't get the chance to workout. I decided I would work out while watching the episode of Biggest Loser. So I hopped on that dreaded treadmill. I'm not really sure what my intentions were, but I ended up jogging. I sort of adapted the mantra, "Enough of this already, it's time to WORK OUT" and increased the speed to 4.5...the 5.0. At some point I decided that I was going to jog for two miles. I have never just jogged ANY miles straight through...I've always walked, then jogged. I told myself there would be no walking this time. I did have to stop periodically to stretch my calves (does that tightness when running EVER go away?) and take a breather, but I was right back to jogging. At one point, I broke down emotionally. I wanted to jog those two miles so badly, but it just seemed like it wasn't going to happen...I just didn't have it in me. I know this seems silly, but I started to cry! And I cried out to God. "This is so hard", I told him. All the while, my mind was screaming, "You'll never run two miles. You're not strong enough. Why did you even try?" I REALLY wanted to give up. But I asked the Lord for strength and stepped back on that treadmill with renewed strength. I caught a glimpse of the distance I had already jogged...1.36 miles! I had already gone over a mile...only a little more than 1/2 mile left to go! This was a breakthrough point to me. And I finished that half mile with a vengeance. When I was done, I could say, "I DID IT!" I was bursting with joy and an amazing sense of accomplishement! I literally almost screamed it out loud...but the kids were in bed and I didn't want to freak out the hubby! lol It's amazing what our bodies can do...usually way more than we think we are capable of doing! It's the same thing with our spiritual lives. Sometimes I get glimpses of what God is calling me to do and I have to admit it's a bit scary! I think to myself that I could never do that! But just as God was there to give me the strength I needed on that treadmill, He will give me the strength to do this too! After all, that's what he created ME to do...of course He will give me the tools I need to do it! I just need to call on Him during those moments of weakness. Then He will lovingly take my hand and help me back on this treadmill we call LIFE to do yet another mile.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Week 7 Blahs

Well, I've made it to Week 7 of this journey and I've officially made it to the BLAHS. Workout? BLAH. Eat healthy? BLAH I feel BLAH. Granted, it's Monday. Granted, it's a school holiday, so I have three kids at home who have been constantly fighting. I can think of 15 other things that I would love to do instead of workout and constantly monitor what goes into my body. Sometimes this is just so hard! Yet, I WILL persevere.

Anyone who knows me, knows that I love to read. I will sometimes be reading 2 or 3 books simultaneously! I recently put a lot of books on hold with the local library and of course, 99% of them came in at the same time. So I currently have a mountain of books on my to-read list. A few of them are about getting out of debt. I just finished a book by Ellie Kay called "1/2 Price Living - Secrets to Living Well on One Income". Little did I know that this author is a Christian, and the end of this book, she has a chapter titled, "How To Finish Great No Matter Where You Start." It lists other aspects of our life in which we can apply good stewardship...and of course, one is our physical bodies. She said something that really stuck out to me and I would like to share it with you. She writes, "Physical well-being is, in some ways, a reflection of a person's spiritual status. If the body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, it ought to be well cared for. By exercising, eating healthy foods, and managing stress, a woman is better able to serve others and meet their spiritual needs." WOW. I guess I sort of knew this, but I've never heard it put this way before. One of my goals in this journey is to become more spiritually fit and to also find (and eventually fulfill!) the purpose that God has for ME and my life. God can't use me to my fullest potential if I'm tired, grumpy, and lacking confidence. I have been a spiritual wimp. I can't hear God calling my name because I have been so focused on ME and how crappy I feel about myself. And I also can't guage my progress on what that darn scale in my bathroom closet is saying. My progress goes far beyond a number. Right now, my progress shows that I have worked out for 6 weeks 5 times a week (I went on a hiatus over the Christmas holiday). The progress shows that I have resisted giving up week after week for 7 weeks. The progress also shows that I am starting to see the good in myself again. I'm starting to have an inkling as to what God has gifted me to do with my life. And I'm excited about it instead of feeling like that dream is so far out of my reach or that I would never be good enough! I am also starting to visualize a healthier, more fit ME! I have my eyes on the prize(s) so to speak. I am believing in myself again. And as Martha would say, "That's a good thing!"

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Week 6 and 4.8 lbs lost!

I have gone from a bit discouraged to encouraged in 0.3 seconds flat. This whole weight loss thing boggles my mind sometimes. At first I'm super encouraged and work out hard and lose weight, then the weight sort of stops coming off and I get discouraged. I am the type of person who wants to see results NOW and when I don't see them, I start to lose hope. Compared to all of my other attempts to lose weight, this one is different...I am NOT going to give up. Since the new year I've felt a bit down because I seemed to be stuck at 182. The old me would have given up pronto, telling myself that I was never going to be skinny anyways, so why try. But I've kept excercising 5 times a week nontheless. I was so bored with the treadmill, but this week have been trying different workout dvds to add variety. Looking back, I'm proud of how long I've stuck with this lifestlye change! These past couple of week have helped me to see that I had lost faith. Faith in myself that I could do it, faith in the future me and what I would become, and faith in God that He would grant me the strength I need to get through each day. I was so focused on seeing those results on the outside, but what really needed changed was the inside. Today I feel renewed. I KNOW that I can do this. It may not happen next month or the month after that, but I know at some point I WILL be fit and healthy. The old me just wanted to lose weight, but the new me still wants to lose weight, but the main goal is to live a healthy vibrant life. I want to be PRESENT in my life....not taking a backseat and watching my friends and family members enjoy theirs. And most importantly I want to live a life of purpose...to find God's purpose for Jen Snyder and live it up! I also do not want to end up where my grandparents are today. I have grown up watching them battle one health problem after another...and most of which could be eliminated if they would have taken better care of themselves. I feel cheated that I didn't get to enjoy much time with them because they were always sick or tired. And now their health problems have progressed so far that it probably is too late. I don't want to be like them when I am in my 70's. I watch the Biggest Loser faithfully and just yesterday it showed a women, who was probably in her 60's, and she was on 9 different medications. She was voted off the ranch after her 2nd week there, and when they did a follow up on how she is currently doing, she is down to only 1 medication a day. And she has only lost 40 or so pounds! It amazes me that most health issues could be resolved by simply losing weight. I wish more people would realize this!

Ok, I guess I'm getting sort of deep, huh? lol Time to snap out of it and get back to the quirky me. I mentioned that I've been doing different workout dvds that I've gotten from the library and thought I'd give you a little review on them. Yesterday I did Valerie Bertinelli's Losing It and Keeping Fit workout and I LOVED IT! It was surprisingly good. It's mainly strength training but incorporates a lot of squats and lunges. By the time I was done with the 40 min workout, my muscles were already feeling really tired. The dvd contains a 20 min, 40 min, and ab workout...and they are all great! The ab workout is a sequence of crunches that work your entire abs by simply changing the postition of your legs. I think I am going to add this one to my personal library!

Now for the funny part. When I put these dvds on hold at the library, I was trying to get creative with what equipment I have....dumbbells, a treadmill, a mini-trampoline, and a step. So I put Kathy Smith's Buns and Thighs Step workout on hold. I did it this morning and was pleasantly surprised to see Kathy and her crew in leotards (minus the leg warmers), tube socks, and high-top Reeboks...compete with SCRUNCHIES! I almost shivered and turned it off, but continued with it for 30 mins. It actually was a really good workout, but I can't bare the thought of doing it again. lol I think it might be a good idea to check out the publishing dates on workouts from now on instead of just assuming that since they are on dvd that they are current! :)

Monday, January 4, 2010

HELLOOOO 2010!

I wish I had something original to write today on this blog, but I came across something in an e-newsletter that I receive that was just too good to not pass along. It sort of sums up what I've been feeling since I've been on this journey of mine over the past 5 or so weeks. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

From Hannah Keeley's Weekly Newsletter:

I love new beginnings and especially a new year! But I've never really been one to make resolutions. I guess it's because I make resolutions all year long. There's no magic that takes place when the clock strikes twelve on the last night of December. The magic happens when you make that irrevocable decision to create a better life. It's more than just a want. It's more than a whim. And it's more than a wish.
It's a will.
It's that point where you draw a line in the sand and step over to a new you, a better you. You will get in shape. You will get out of debt. You will create a happier family. You will get rid of clutter. You have to make that decision and know deep in your heart there's no turning back.
I hope you've made that decision. And if you have, then now's the time to put feet to your dreams. If there was any magic in life changes, then this is where it happens. You've got to break down your goals into steps and go after them every day. The magic doesn't happen when a ball drops in Times Square. It happens when you make those moment-by-moment decisions to pursue your goals. It happens when you wake up in the morning to spend ten minutes in prayer, when you take twenty minutes to read a book to the kids, when you take thirty minutes to clean out some shelves in a closet. It happens when you say "no" to seconds at the dinner table and "yes" to one more lap around the neighborhood. It's in the little things and the baby steps. Without them, you just have wishes, whims, and wants.
It's time to make it a will. Take those dreams that you've been dreaming up and go after them! Write down what you are going to do each month, week, and every day to get closer to your dreams and don't take "later" for an answer. Now is your time to make it happen. This is your year to shine!