Tuesday, November 20, 2018

100 Days of Keto Challenge One - Day One - The Beginning!

It took me several extra days to finally get started on this challenge (and stick to it) but today is officially Day 1 of the 100-Days of Keto Challenge Plan One.

I'm starting at at my highest weight and measurements since August of 2017 and I can't gain back any more weight. I have to end it somewhere and today is it. No matter how had the first two weeks will be and how much it will suck to stay cheat free on Christmas, I'm going to do it because the alternative is way worse.

If I keep going the way I have been I'll gain back everything I've lost over all this time (and probably more) and I refuse to do that! There are no more excuses. This needs to happen now and I will make sure it does!

Following the keto challenge plan,  I'm only going to be weighing-in every 10 days instead of every Thursday and I'll also be doing my measurements and body fat % on those 10 days as well.

I will probably weigh myself several times in those 10-days but it won't be official until the 10th day. I just want to keep an eye on how the numbers are doing.

I'm also going to continue to do rewards every 25 days so I should earn four rewards during this time and every 100 days I get a "feast" day. I'm no longer calling those "cheat" days because it's not cheating, it's planned for and part of the my plan! And once that day is done I'll start the next 100-days challenge.

I'm also going to work in one 24-hour (or more) fast every ten day cycle and I plan to keep working out and will be picking up with that again really soon!

I'm really looking forward to finally being back on track and in control of myself and I'm hoping it goes well!

100-Days of Keto Challenge One Starting Numbers:

180 lbs

Body Fat

Measurements:              Change from 9/10/2018
Waist: 38 inches                            (0.5 inches)
Hips: 41.5 inches                         (+1.0 inches)
Bust: 41.5 inches                          (+1.0 inches)
Chest: 34.5 inches                         (0.0 inches)
Right arm: 13.5 inches                  (0.3 inches)
Left arm:  13.5 inches                    (0.3 inches)     
Right thigh: 26 inches                   (+1.0 inches)
Left thigh:  25 inches                     (+1.0 inches)
Right calf: 15.5 inches                    (0.0 inches)
Left calf:   15.5 inches                     (0.0 inches)
Jeans Size: size 10                              (1 size)

Monday, November 19, 2018

A Goal and a Plan for the Next Six Months

As you guys may have noticed I've had a really hard time staying on track with food and exercise lately and I'm currently at my highest weight and size since August of 2017 and probably in the worst physical shape I've been in since then as well.

None of this is anything new but I also refuse to keep going this way because it's not just my health and weight anymore, it's also what I want to do with my life which is help people get in shape and help them find a way to love fitness. And I can't accomplish that without getting fit myself and getting my head back in the game!

So my current goal and plan is to take the next six months (because six months will pass by whether or not I choose to do anything with them) and to get myself back on track with food, my weight, my health, my fitness, exercise and my personal training business/life/job whatever it is.

This is the plan I currently have and if anyone has any ideas of suggestions feel free to throw them my way:

1) follow the 100-day keto challenge starting tomorrow morning with day one (again).

2) post my daily check-in on Instagram every evening.

3) track, weigh and measuring all my food, even little things that I've been letting slide.

4) NO cheating but every 100-days I can one "free" Feast Day!

5) weigh-in and take measurements every 10 days of the challenge.

6) try one new keto recipe a week.

7) continue to do monthly yoga challenges.

8) work out daily even if it's just a stretch on my rest day.

9) follow my Push/Pull/Legs/Abs A-G plan along with cardio and yoga and continue training with my new trainer.

10) complete my last program through NASM which is the Business Accelerator Program that was included in the NASM package that I bought.

11) work out a small business plan and putting together an outline and plan for how I want to do this personal training thing

12) finalize my "online training" payment amounts so I can finally start getting my website and personal training stuff out there.

13) continue working with the people I am still currently training (or am on hold with).

14) keep all my goal in mind every day so I actually stay on track with everything.

15) blog weekly about keto, NASM stuff, workout stuff and personal training. I think the more that I blog and talk about it the more I will get accomplished.

I think that covers it for now but I seriously need to get it together if I want to make any progress in any of the areas of my life!

Motivational Monday

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Changing Up the Plan - 100 Days of Keto Challenge by Ketofy.me (Again)

So... I've decided to go back to the 100-Day of Keto Challenge by Ketofy.me rather than sticking to my own plan for several reasons.

1) I like their check off progress calendar better than mine.

2) I liked posting the progress calendar daily on my Instagram and posting how many net carbs I had that day. I think it kept me much more accountable.

3) I liked weighing-in and doing measurements every ten days (although I'll admit that I will be getting on the scale more often just to keep an eye on it)

4) I actually stuck to it for over 40 days which is the best progress I've made in many months!

5) I think I made a mistake by deciding to do keto completely cheat free for good. As soon as I make a decision like that my brain starts freaking out and pushing me toward carbs instead of away from them so the plan right now is to do 100 days fully cheat free, take one day off and then start the next 100-day countdown.

Honestly, I don't know if this will work but knowing that I'm counting down to a day when I can just relax and eat whatever will help me stay on track better as opposed to saying, "I'm doing this indefinitely" and feeling like I have nothing to look forward too (trust me, it makes sense in my head).

I'm officially starting on Thursday but I don't plan on having any cheat days until then so that shouldn't be a problem, and I'll be posting all my official numbers and measurements then!

Monday, November 12, 2018

Monday, November 12th Workout - Pull Day A - Back, Traps, Biceps & Forearms Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch

I had another great workout today and my back is only slightly achy so I'm good with that. I still kept my weights lower than normal and my cardio at 20 minutes but I should be able to push myself harder by the time I hit my B days. I also upped my yoga pose holds to 15 seconds from 10 seconds and that felt a lot better to me.

Leg Day A tomorrow!

Pull Day A - Back, Traps, Biceps & Forearms Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch: 1 hour, 39 Minutes Total Time

Warm-Up: 10 Minutes

Foam Rolling - hold 30 seconds per stretch & side:
Upper & Lower Back

Dynamic Warm-Up:
Forearm Plank Set:  3 planks x 30 second hold forearm plank
Bird Dog - 10 reps
10 reps x bodyweight of every exercise of Pull Day A
Walk in Place - 1 Minute

Back, Traps, Biceps & Forearms: 42 Minutes

Alternating Superman - 3 sets x 15 reps: bodyweight

Wide Grip Anchored Band Lat Pulldown w/curl bar - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 40 lb band (doubled over) + 8 lb Curl Bar

Chest Supported Dumbbell (Prone) Bench Row -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 8 lbs

Anchored Band Shrug w/accessory bar -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 20 lb band (doubled over)

Anchored Band Bicep Curl w/accessory bar - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 10-12 lb band (doubled over)

Anchored Band Forward High Bicep Curl w/accessory bar - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 8 lb band (doubled over)

Dumbbell Standing Hammer Bicep Curl -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 5 lbs

Seated Dumbbell Forearm Extension on bench - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 3 lbs

Cardio: 20 Minutes: 
“Leslie Sansone's Just Walk: Walk Off Fat Fast - 20 Minute Easy Burn”: Fitbit info: time: 20 minutes, distance: 1.17 miles

Full Body Yoga Stretch (holding each pose for 15 seconds per side) - 27 Minutes

MyZone Info                                                       Fitbit Info

Motivational Monday

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Sunday, November 11th Workout - Push Day A - Chest, Shoulders & Triceps Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch

Today I finally started working out at home again and I absolutely loved it!

I decided to start at home but this workout can also be done at the gym so I won't have to switch workouts if I decide to go back and forth.

I did have to scale my weights and bands down by a lot. Some of my weights went from lifting 12-15 lbs down to 3 lbs and 5 lbs and I would normally be upset about that but, that's exactly what my trainer told me to do when I saw him last week, in order to get my body back on track and even after warming up, Push Day A, cardio and my full-body yoga stretch my back doesn't hurt and that's what really counts!

I also absolutely loved doing my yoga stretch/routine. I only held each pose for 10 seconds to start off with but it was still great. I felt like my body was saying, "hey, I remember this and I love it!"

I went through and edited my Push/Pull/Legs/Abs A-G workout last week to make sure it's safe for my back and I stuck with only 20 minute of WATP's for cardio and kept is really low-key.

In a way I feel like I'm back at the start of my fitness journey but in another way, I know what my body is capable of doing and I know I'll get there again with time. I just need to be careful and take my time as I go and I'm more than willing to do that.

I can't wait for Pull Day tomorrow!

Push Day A - Chest, Shoulders & Triceps Plus Cardio & Stretch: 1 hour, 40 Minutes Total Time

Warm-Up: 10 Minutes

Foam Rolling - hold 30 seconds per stretch & side:
Upper & Lower Back
Chest Opener

Dynamic Warm-Up:
Forearm Plank Set:  3 planks x 30 second hold forearm plank
Knee push-ups - 10 reps
10 reps x bodyweight of every exercise of Push Day A
Walk in Place - 1 Minute

Chest, Shoulders & Triceps: 50 Minutes

Standing Anchored Band Chest Press w/handles - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 20 lb band (horizontal hold)

Dumbbell Fat Bench Chest Fly (vertical hold) -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 5 lbs

Dumbbell Incline Bench Wide-Grip Chest Press - 3 sets x 15 reps: 1 x 8 lbs, 2 x 5 lbs

Seated Bench Dumbbell Overhead Shoulder Press - 3 sets x 15 reps: 1 x 5 lbs, 2 x 3 lbs

Anchored Band Lateral Raises w/small handles -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 3 lb band (doubled over)

Standing Dumbbell Scarecrow - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 3 lbs

Anchored Band Tricep Pushdowns w/tricep rope - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 20 lb band (doubled over)

Dumbbell Crossface Tricep Extensions on Bench -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 3 lbs

Cardio: 20 Minutes: 
“Leslie Sansone's Just Walk: Walk Off Fat Fast - 20 Minute Easy Burn”: Fitbit info: time: 20 minutes, distance: 1.18 miles

Full Body Yoga Stretch (holding each pose for 10 seconds per side) - 20 Minutes

I'm also going to continue to log my workout info using my the MyZone heart rate monitor and my Fitbit. 

As a reminder, The MyZone always gives me a higher calorie burn than the Fitbit and it shows a longer workout time because it tracks from when I put it on to when I take off including all the "off" time between workouts that the Fitbit doesn't count because I stop and start it in between the various workouts.

           MyZone Info                                                       Fitbit Info

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Keto Lifestyle Change - The New Beginning

So, here we are again back to Day 1. If you guys have been reading my blog for a while, it's previous obvious that I usually need a several restarts before that little switch in my brain kicks in and I'm able to stay on plan.

Considering that this is my highest weight in about a year and that I've gained back 20 lbs over the last 6 months, let's say that switch has been officially turned on the "on" position because I refuse to gain back any more weight!

So, I am now ready to give my all to making keto/low carb (up to 50 net grams of carbs depending on the day) my lifestyle. Not a diet or a temporary solution to losing weight but a healthy way of eating that will allow me to control my chronic pain and illnesses without additional medications and continue on my weight loss journey.

Now, granted, I did officially restart on November 1st after my two days of cheating but it wasn't a full restart. I would still take little bites of stuff here and there and those bites led to more bites and then to even more so while they weren't full-out cheat days, they were definitely not on track and I knew that if I kept counting them as official days on plan I'd never stop then sneaking and snacking and it had to to stop!

And then I would have a couple of good days and then another off day but today's weight has really shown me that I HAVE to do this or the weight and the  lack of health will come back and it will comeback fast!

Also, I can honestly say that as of today, I am definitely looking forward to going back to losing weight, being on track and exercising again!

I know that the first 10 days or so will be the hardest and if I can just get through them I'll be okay! I have plenty of healthy food stocked up and lots of recipes I'd like to start trying out and I feel mentally ready to do this.

I also can't wait to start working out again (most likely on Saturday) and I know that will help me stay on track and get back to losing weight and building muscle!

I redid all my measurements and they will be my new starting point. I'll be weighing in every Thursday, taking measurements once a month of the first weigh-in of that particular month as well as doing the body fat % at the same time as the measurements and continuing the 25-day rewards.

I'm also going to keep going with the countdown sheet going in 100-day increments because I like having the ability to check off the day when I'm done and seeing how far I've come as I progress through this journey.

So here are all my starting numbers based on today's weigh-in and measurements:

Keto Lifestyle Change Starting Numbers - 11/08/2018 - Week 0:

178 lbs lbs

Body Fat

Measurements:              Change from 9/10/2018
Waist: 37.5 inches                         (0.0 inches)
Hips: 41 inches                            (+ 0.5 inches)
Bust: 41 inches                            (+ 0.5 inches)
Chest: 34.5 inches                         (0.0 inches)
Right arm: 13.2 inches                  (0.0 inches)
Left arm:  13.2 inches                    (0.0 inches)       
Right thigh: 25.5 inches                (+ 0.5 inches)
Left thigh:  24.5 inches                 (+ 0.5 inches)
Right calf: 15.5 inches                    (0.0 inches)
Left calf:   15.5 inches                     (0.0 inches)
Jeans Size: size 8                            (no change)

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Working Out Safely With Lower Back Pain - NASM Personal Training Internship Blog Article

One of my assignments for my NASM Personal Training Internship was to do a workshop or blog article of a subject of my own choosing. I went with the blog article and decided to focus on exercising with low back pain since that is something I suffer from frequently. This is my final blog article and I hope it helps those of you out there who need it!!

If you suffer lower back pain, you're not alone. According to research, more than 85% of adults in the United States suffer from low back pain at some point in their lives and it is the fifth most common reason for doctor's visits. 

There are many reasons for back pain ranging from regular activity to injuries and medical conditions. The chance of developing lower back pain increases with age and lack of activity and can interfere with daily activities. Research has also shown that living a healthy lifestyle and doing strengthening exercises may reduce pain and increase back function over time.

Back pain could be both acute (lasting less than 6 weeks) and chronic (lasting more than 3 months). There are different reasons and causes for back pain. Our bodies function best when all of our muscles work in sync with one another so a variety of things, including injury, improper movement, illness and and weak muscles of the core and pelvis could lead to back pain.

There are many different causes of back pain. 

Some additional common causes are:
  • disc degenerative disease such as spinal stenosis 
  • injury from sprains and strains
  • medical conditions such as as fibromyalgia, osteoporosis and kidney stones
  • improper movement such as lifting objects incorrectly
  • structural problems such as bulging discs, sciatica and arthritis,
  • every day movements such as lifting, sitting, moving and twisting
  • strenuous exercise

Low back pain doesn't always require a doctor's visit but in some cases it's crucial to see your doctor to prevent pain from getting worse and leading to more injuries. 

Please see your doctor if you experience the following symptoms:
  • Back pain that follows a trauma, such as a car accident or a fall 
  • The pain is constant and getting worse
  • Back pain that continues for more than four to six weeks
  • The pain is severe and does not improve after a day or two of typical remedies, such as rest, ice and common pain relievers (such as ibuprofen or Tylenol)
  • The pain is worse at night (most common forms of back pain are better when at rest)
The good news is that despite suffering from lower back pain you can remain active and improve your pain through specific movements, stretches and exercises. You can also find ways to protect your body from further pain and injury by changing the way you move and rest as well. 

There are  also many things you can do throughout your daily life to prevent and improve back pain. 

Some of other things you can do to prevent back pain are:
  • sleeping with pillow between your knees
  • wearing comfortable, low heeled shoes
  • carrying less weight throughout the day as well as distributing the weight you are carrying equally to both sides of your body
  • sleeping on your side instead of your back
  • avoiding heavy lifting and if you must lift something heavy to  bend your knees and keep your back straight so that you are lifting with your legs rather than you back
  • watching your weight
  • exercising and strengthening your core muscles

There are several exercises you can do to prevent lower back pain and well as improve it but please see your doctor before beginning any exercise program!

The top five exercises you can do are:

Glute Bridge: 

The glutes are some of the strongest muscles in your body. They're responsible for movement at the hip, including hip extensions and squats. Weakness in the glutes can contribute to back pain because they’re important stabilizers of the hip joints, and of the lower back during movements like walking and are often in use.


Lie on an exercise mat with your knees bent so that your feet are flat on the floor. Keep your back straight.
1. Place your hands out to your sides palms flat for stability.
2. Raise your glutes off the floor by extending your hips upward while pushing down through you heels.
3. Continue until your back, hips and thighs are in a straight line. Hold for a count of one.
4. Return to the start position by lowering your hips back to the floor.
5. Pause then repeat.

Bird Dog:

This is a bodyweight exercise which strengthens your abs and lower back. It’s great for beginners who feel like they don’t have much lower back strength, because you're using your own bodyweight, arms and legs rather than  weights or resistance bands (although bands can be added as you progress and get stronger).


Position yourself on all fours with knees underneath the hips and wrists under the shoulders.
1. Engage your abs and keep your spine neutral, pulling the shoulder blades towards the hips.
2. Lengthen the left leg until it is straight out and in line with your hips while simultaneously raising and straightening your right arm until it is parallel to the floor. Keep your head and shoulders aligned at all times.
3. Gently lower your arm and leg back to the starting position and alternate with the other arm and leg.

Dead Bug:

This exercise allows you to strengthen your abdominal muscles and all the front sides of your core while minimizing the pressure on your lower back.


Lie on your back. Extend hands straight above towards the ceiling. Bring your knees up to a 90-degree angle. Shins should be parallel to the floor. Exhale and bring hips off the floor.
1. Begin by extending one leg forward. The foot should be hovering just above the ground.
2. Pause then return the leg to it’s starting position while extending the opposing leg. Keep alternating legs while maintaining a tight core.

Forearm Plank:

Because the plank requires very little movement while still contracting all the layers of the abdominals, it's a great way to strengthen the core, which then reduces low-back pain. As the abdominal muscles get stronger, your mid-section tightens. When done correctly, the plank not only uses the deep abdominal muscles but it also uses the hip, shoulder and upper-back muscles.


Get into a face down position on the floor supporting your upper body on your forearms. Your elbows should be bent at 90 degrees.
1. Extend your legs straight out behind you, supporting them on your toes and balls of your feet.
2. Keep your body in a straight line by tightening your abdominal and oblique muscles.
3. Hold for as long as possible.

Cat-Cow Back Stretch:

This stretch helps maintain mobility of the spine while strengthening the back and abdominal muscles. It also works to strengthen, stretch and release the tension in the spine. The movements of this exercise use all the sections of your spine, increasing flexibility and circulation.


Step 1: Bring your hands and knees onto the floor. Ensure your knees are in line with your hips,your wrists are in line with your shoulders and your back and head are centered.
Step 2: On an inhale slowly drop your belly towards the floor as you lift your hips, roll your shoulders back and raise your chin towards the sky.
Step 3: On an exhale, press your palms firmly into the mat as you curve your spine, rounding the shoulders and tucking the tailbone in.
The purpose of this pose is to connect movement with your breath. Slowly alternate between cat and cow pose keeping in rhythm with your breath. (Slowly inhale into cow. Slowly exhale into cat)

There are also exercises that could injure your back further as well as increase your pain. These exercises need to be avoided until a doctor has cleared you to do them. Here are the top five exercises to avoid with back pain.

Exercises to avoid:

Superman due to most people experiencing discomfort with this exercise, as well as research showing that it creates the highest amount of stress to the joints of the low back.

Sit Ups due to them putting a lot of pressure on lower back.

Double Leg Raises (lifting both legs together while lying on your back) due to  them putting a lot of demand on your low back.

Standing Toe Touches due to them stretching the back more than the hamstrings which may aggravate an already existing back injury.

Russian Twists due to them aggravating any pre-existing lower-back issues, especially when done with improper form.

Working with a Certified Personal Trainer could be helpful if you suffer from lower back pain for several reasons. One, they will conduct a full risk assessment to be sure that you are ready to exercise and will be able to suggest a doctor's visit if needed.

They also know what areas of the body to focus on the most and how to lengthen and strengthen the muscles that will support and protect your lower back. They are also able to teach you how to move correctly to protect your back and how to perform every exercise correctly, with the right form, as well as help improve your posture and daily movements and reduce risk of further injury.

In conclusion back pain can range anywhere from irritating to debilitating but it does not have to prevent you from living your life and getting and/or staying in shape. You just have to know the right things to do to make that happen!

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

A Whole New Way of Looking at Things - Keto, Diets and Lifestyle Changes


As you guys may have noticed by my blog posts, I've spent a lot of time going back and forth between keto, no cheat keto, having cheat days and considering other options in the last few weeks and I've come to an important realization.

Keto, for me, is not just about weight loss. Keto stops my binging and it significantly lowers my fibromyalgia and migraine pain. It gives me a ton of energy, puts me in a good place mentally and keeps me from eating unhealthy foods. Of course the weight loss is great as well but it's not my biggest goal for doing keto.

Due to all these reasons I've come to understand (and maybe to finally accept) that keto is the way I need to eat permanently. I can't keep having occasional cheat days because they send me off into a binging cycle and they set off off my fibro pain and migraines so I need to approach this in a completely different light.

I think I need to look at simple carbs and sugars, as well as most sugar alcohols, as something I'm allergic too. True, they won't stop me from breathing or give me hives but they will make me be in serious pain all over my body and I'm tired of that.

If I can control my pain through diet rather than medication than how can I not do that? There are people who don't get that option. There are people who have to take meds while all I have to do is change how I eat so what gives me the right to complain about that?

I think it's time to see how much I actually have available to me in terms of controlling my chronic pain and illnesses. Yes, they suck, yes, the hurt, yes, half the time they keep me from being able to function like a "regular" person but if I can control that with my diet for 90% of the pain, how can I NOT do it?

So here is my new plan. I'm taking the next two days and I'm getting my cheat foods eaten and done with. I have some at home that I've been putting aside for my two days off at Christmas but instead of doing that I'm having them now. Then Thursday (which works out perfectly because that's my weigh-in day) I will begin keto with no end date or cheat dates in sight.

I will not be taking days off for any holiday, Christmas included, because this is not a diet. This is not a temporary way of eating. This is the way I will be approaching food from now one and I feel like the longer I can stick with it, the better I will feel and the less I will miss the crap food.

I'm also going to start paying a lot of attention to healthy foods and recipes and trying a lot of new ideas out so I'm not eating the same boring thing every day. Since I have hundreds of keto recipes bookmarked and pinned, that shouldn't be a problem.

So that's my plan. I've made this plan before and I've known all this information before but, for some reason, today, right now, I'm ready to embrace keto for all it's worth!

Let's do this!

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Sunday, October 28th - Official Keto Restart

Well, my weight has skyrocketed to 175.8 lbs which is almost where I started when I started the 100-day keto challenge back in September which is depressing to say the least. And I know not all of that is "real" weight so I'm just sucking it up and starting fresh.

It's pretty pointless to be upset about it and between falling off the keto wagon, still being injured and in bad pain, barely being able to move and Halloween candy, this isn't a great shock.

I currently have 57 days to go until Christmas Eve so that's my official challenge.

Then I get two days off and after that I really need to sit down and figure out what's best for me, my weight loss and my way of life.

But right now it's time to get back to it though, no more excuses!

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Back Injuries, Cheat Meals and Brand New Starts...

Okay... where to begin?

Let's start with the back injury. So sometime on Sunday evening my back went out, like, really badly. I didn't even realize the extent of it until Monday morning when I got up and I am in the worst pain I've been in in years. I'd say on the pain scale it's anywhere between an 8 or 9 out of 10 when I'm not moving, more of a 12 out of 10 when I am moving and the one time I started bending over without thinking about it felt like a train hit my back and hip.

I'm pretty sure it's sciatica because it goes from above my waist down to almost my knee on the left side. I can't drive, I can't even attempt our stairs and I can barely move and function. I can't remember the last time it was this bad.

Yesterday I spent the day putting heat on it and today I switched to ice because the heat isn't helping. I'm also on muscle relaxants thanks to my doctor but I'm not sure if those are helping at all.

I also have no idea when I can work out again or do the yoga challenge or just function like a normal person.

So, for that reason, last night I had a cheat meal of pizza (crust included). I didn't spend the day cheating, I didn't overeat and I didn't binge. I enjoyed the pizza until I was full and then I stopped despite there being slices left over. Today I'm right back to keto and have no desire to binge so maybe I am making some progress with my food issues.

But, due to the cheat meal, I obviously stopped the 100 Day Keto Challenge. My goal now is to continue the no cheating until Christmas Eve when I take two days off to eat anything I want. I really liked the keto challenge calendar and since it helped me stay accountable, I created my own challenge calendar that I'll be marking off on my workout area door every evening and posting on Instagram as I go.

Also, I did a new weigh-in today and I'm glad I did because it's higher than my last weigh-in, most like due to the combo of incredibly inflamed muscles and body parts plus the pizza and whatever else may be going on.

I'm also going back to my Thursday weigh-ins and generally doing what I was doing before the keto challenge and I'll be doing my measurements once a month instead of once every ten days.

Since I only have 62 days until my goal I'll be getting two rewards; one at 30 days and one at 60 days. Then I'll see what I want to do after Christmas is over.

I think that about covers it for now.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

The Past Week of the October Yoga Challenge Photos!

The third week of the October yoga challenge was great! I enjoyed all the poses, except one (the freaking crow pose) and I was able to make really great progress with my camel pose! Can't wait to see what this coming week brings!

Day Fifteen October Yoga Challenge - Crow Pose (Bakasana). Modified with yoga blocks and one one foot off the ground. 

Day Sixteen October Yoga Challenge - Half Moon Pose (Ardha Chandrasana). Modified with yoga blocks.

Day Seventeen October Yoga Challenge - Camel Pose (Ustrasana).

Day Eighteen October Yoga Challenge - Wide-Legged Forward Bend/Fold Pose (Prasarita Padottanasana).

Day Nineteen October Yoga Challenge - High Lunge Pose (Utthita Ashwa Sanchalasana).

Day Twenty October Yoga Challenge - One Legged Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana). 

Day Twenty-One October Yoga Challenge - Standing Forward Bend/Fold Pose (Uttanasana).

Friday, October 19, 2018

100 Days of Keto Challenge - Day Forty - Weigh-In Four!

I'm only down 0.2 lbs in the last ten days and I'm actually happy with it.  I broke the pattern in these last ten days by weighing in more often and I'm glad I did because if I'd gotten on the scale for the first time today and saw such a small loss I would have probably been devastated, but since I was mentally ready for a gain, this number was a pleasant surprise!

The scale had shown a gain this past week every time that I got on it so I was fully prepared to see a gain this morning. I didn't cheat, I didn't go over my calories, I drank all my water... so what went wrong?

Well, it took me a little while but I finally figured it out a couple of days ago! In this last 10-day round of the keto challenge I added the Isopure protein powder back in and was making home made protein shakes and hoping for the best and that had to be it. They've stalled me before, they definitely bloated me and that's the only thing I've done differently.

I know it was stupid to keep trying them when I pretty much know what the outcome will be but I was hoping that if I tried them in smaller amounts with no Atkins shakes at all and without the digestive enzymes (which made me really sick) that maybe they would work.

I guess I was wrong. My body just can't handle them. And that would explain the bloating that seemed to come out of nowhere.

So, no more Isopure shakes again for good this time (and, yes, I've said that before but I mean it this time). I also have not been buying Atkins shakes and have almost fully cut them out of my food plan replacing them with actual food like chicken.

And, on the plus side, I'm back in the 160's so I'm good with that. I also didn't lose any inches at all this week, but I think some of that is coming from the bloating from the shakes plus that should improve once I start working out again tomorrow.

Right now my goal is to shoot for working out wherever I can fit it in. I printed my at-home weight training plan but it could also easily be done at the gym so I'm going to work out wherever I have time to workout. Some days will be at home, some days will be at the gym and I'm tried of obsessing about it. As long as I do something somewhere I'll be happy.

My goals for the next round of 10 days are to continue to eat healthy with no cheating, do one 24-hour fast and get back to regular workouts. I'm also not going to only weigh-in every ten days anymore because, due to where I am mentally right now, I can't handle the not knowing.

100-Days of Keto Challenge 4th 10-Day Check-In Numbers:

169.8 lbs

Total Weight Lost in 4th 10 Days of Challenge:
-0.2 lbs

Total Weight Lost in 40 Days of Challenge:
-6.4 lbs

Measurements:              Change from 10/09/2018 
Waist: 35 inches                        (- 0.0 inches)
Hips: 39 inches                         (- 0.0 inches)
Bust: 39 inches                          (- 0.0 inches)
Chest: 33.5 inches                     (- 0.0 inches)
Right arm: 12.25 inches             (-0.0 inches)
Left arm:  12.25 inches               (-0.0 inches)   
Right thigh: 23.25 inches           (- 0.0 inches)
Left thigh: 22.75 inches             (- 0.0 inches)
Right calf: 15.25 inches               (-0.0 inches)
Left calf:   15.25 inches               (-0.0 inches)
Jeans Size: size 8                          (no change)

Total Inches Lost in 4th 10 Days of Challenge:
-0.0 inches

Total Inches Lost in 40 Days of Challenge:
-12 inches

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Again... It Crept In When I Wasn't Watching...

"...I feel just like I'm sinking
and I claw for solid ground.
I'm pulled down by the undertow.
I never thought I could feel so low.
Oh darkness I feel like letting go..."
           ~Sarah Mclachlan's "Full of Grace"

... and I didn't realize it was here until it was too late to cut it off at the pass. Again, there was no way to stop it. Again, in the fall, like the year before and the year before that and the year before that.

Again, depression steals everything from me... my positivity, my plans, my hopes, my dreams... the world is gray and cold. Everything is harder to do, like I am slogging through the mud, like my legs are made of cement, like the ground itself is pulling me down into the dark void that just waits for me with open arms.

Again, food doesn't taste good, music doesn't sound right, my interest in the world, nature, exercise, health, weight loss, family, creativity and everything I normally love fades away until there's a wall between myself and the things I once loved to do.

Again, it didn't have the decency to to come out and tell me it was coming. I should have expected it and I should have been ready but I wasn't. It rolled in like the fog, circling slowly, higher and higher, until suddenly I was coated and I can't seem to find a way back to whom I was before.

Again, it doesn't matter how hard I try. It doesn't matter how positive I try to stay. It doesn't matter that life is going well and there's no reason why I shouldn't be happy. It just is what it is.

And now, now that it's here, I can finally look back and see the build up that I wish I could have seen as it happened... slowly, brick by brick, step by step, away from the me I want to be to the me I tried to hold back with therapy and medication and hope.

Again, there is nothing more I can do but call my psychiatrist and my therapist and wait until they have the time to see me and go back to juggling medications and talking until something clicks and it recedes again like the tide, leaving me finally free to breathe again.

Depression steals everything from me.


And no matter what I do, no matter how hard I try, I never know how long it will be until it's finally gone again.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

The Past Week of the October Yoga Challenge Photos!

The second week of the October yoga challenge was awesome! I had some great poses, including my absolute favorite tree pose that I hadn't done in a while, and I was happy to still be able to get almost all the poses outside! Can't wait to see what this coming week brings!

Day Eight October Yoga Challenge - Chair Pose (Utkatasana)

Day Nine October Yoga Challenge - Extended Hand-To-Big-Toe Pose (Utthita Hasta Padangustasana)

Day Ten October Yoga Challenge - Tree Pose (Vriksasana)

Day Eleven October Yoga Challenge - Plow Pose (Halasana)

Day Twelve October Yoga Challenge - Warrior I Pose (Virabhadrasana I)

Day Thirteen October Yoga Challenge - Upward-Facing Dog Pose (Urdhu Mukha Sanasana)

Day Fourteen October Yoga Challenge - Standing Back Bend Pose (Anuvittasana)