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If you’ve read my blog once, you know I was an overweight kid. For the majority of my life I was in the “obese” or “morbidly obese” BMI category. I wasn’t overweight because I was lazy. That’s the part that blew my mind.
I was always active as a child. I was a cheerleader from the time I started kindergarten until 9th grade. I played basketball in middle school and high school and played softball from the time I could walk until I graduated from high school. Not only did I play all these sports, but I excelled in them. I was the captain of every team I played on and I was one of the best players on every team (okay, I’ll stop bragging and reliving my glory days).
So what was the problem?
Since 7th grade, I’ve been on constant diets. I’ve tried Weight Watchers, South Beach, Atkins, the Grapefruit Diet, the Lemonade Diet, and a slew of other diets with wacky names. I’d lose one or two pounds, then gain it all right back.
I’ve even tried hCg shots paired with phentermine (an appetite suppressant). I lost a total of zero pounds with this “magical elixir,” mainly because the phentermine made me jittery and I always felt like my heart was going to explode… I didn’t continue taking the phentermine for very long.
In high school I was diagnosed with PCOS (poly-cystic ovarian syndrome), which inhibited my weight loss efforts, but wasn’t exactly the solution to my “weighty” issue. The main issue was the fact that I would not eat in front of anyone. Odd, I know.
I wouldn’t eat breakfast; if I did it was high in sugar and carbohydrates. While my classmates were eating lunch, I was sitting in the court yard writing or playing a game of catch with some teammates. I would go the entire day without eating, go to a 2 hour sports practice then come home and binge until I went to bed.
Finally in college I got serious about losing weight. Since graduating from college in December of 2010, I’ve lost over 100 pounds. I recently revamped my diet (I was getting bored eating the same salad and grilled chicken every night) and I’ve stuck to it for the most part.
I’d be lying to you if I said I’ve stuck to my workout routine in the past two months. The fact is, I’ve got off track with my workouts. So, Jesse (our art director) and Laura (our editorial assistant) and I have joined Planet Fitness. We’ve made a pact to be each other’s “kick in the butt”.
We’re going to the gym tonight after work to get our membership cards and take a tour. We’re going to start going together after work on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Then we’re on our own to work out on the weekends or other days of the week. We’ll take videos, pictures and share our progress on this blog.
If you want to join our “Get Fit” challenge, email me at email@example.com and we’ll let you know when we’re working out!
As I said last week, I’m getting back on track. My goal is to lose 30 pounds before my birthday on July 7.
I can do it! [positive thinking never hurts!]
I’m more determined than ever to get these final 30 pounds off and keep it off. Last week everything just clicked and I realized… my goal is within reach!
Maybe it was the Biggest Loser marathon I watched or maybe it was the hours I spent on Pintrest playing with the weight loss simulator and pinning exercise routines… whatever it was I’m glad I’m back in weight loss mode!
I’ve devised a workout plan and nutrition plan that I believe will help me lose the last of the weight in a healthy and timely manner.
Here’s my plan:
Exercise – Go back on my regular exercise routine of two hours of cardio five times a week and one hour of weight training three times
Since moving to Beacon,
I cancelled my membership at my gym in Carmel. I’m joining Planet Fitness later this month and until then I’ll go for runs around my apartment complex (even if it’s snowing).
Nutrition –Every morning I’m making a mad dash out the door in order to get to the office on time, so I need something I can make the night before and just grab on my way out the door (I’m sure you moms and dads out there can relate). So for breakfast I’m going to alternate between a hard-boiled egg one day and a protein shake the next.
Oh lunch… I always seem to forget my lunch at home. So my co-workers and I tend to eat out a lot. Besides being bad for my health, eating out [almost] daily is killing my budget! So, I actually went to Shoprite during their can-can sell and bought a half a million cans of tuna (okay, not literally, but pretty close). Then I bought rye bread (the mini square loaf used for appetizers) and some fruit. So for lunch I’ll be having tuna on rye with an orange.
The big thing for me is kicking my soda habit. I used to bring a bottle of soda to work every day (in place of coffee). I’d only have one soda, but one a day really adds up! I’ve stopped drinking soda for a week now and already feel less bloated!
Now comes the really hard part… DINNER!
I admit it… when I get home from work, my laziness can only compare to that of an over privileged teenager. If Bill didn’t beg me to make dinner, I’d go to bed without eating each night. I’d rather lounge around in my pajamas pinning items for my dream home on Pintrest or cheering on Ryan Callahan and the New York Rangers (I’m so happy the lock out is over)! Poor Bill, I eventually make him a big bowl of pasta or order out. The only problem: Pasta makes me sick! I’ve tried whole wheat options, but nevertheless, I end up getting sick for hours after I eat pasta. So, I’ve decided for dinner I’ll start making a healthy protein like chicken or fish and serving it with a salad or some veggies on the side.
Bill will just have to get over his opposition to veggies! He’ll thank me later!
I bet you’re wondering why this blog is titled “Tonight is the night!” Well, here goes… I’m going to trick Bill into eating and actually liking vegetables! I’m going to show him veggies can be just as delicious as pasta! I’ve searched high and low (on Pintrest obviously) for pasta substitute recipes. I’ve seen so many recipes for pasta dishes that use spaghetti squash in place of the regular spaghetti. I asked my co-worker, Laura (our resident health food know-it-all) and she said it would be a hard sell since the squash is “mushier” than regular pasta. I decided I’d try to trick him anyway and record his reaction for all of you to see tomorrow!
Here’s hoping I can trick Bill into eating healthier with me!
Don’t you just hate those people that can eat anything and not gain an ounce? I know I do.
After losing 130 pounds, I’ve gotten off the health nut bandwagon a little bit (thanks to the holidays). I still have 35 pounds to lose, so I’m determined to lose it before my 25th birthday in July.
I’ve decided the best way to keep myself in check is to keep a video diary and share it with the Hudson Valley! So starting next Wednesday I’ll begin posting weekly video updates to my blog. I’ll share healthy recipes, exercise tips, my triumphs and set backs. I’m going to put it all out there.
If you’re looking to get healthy this year, I welcome you to join me on my journey!
I don’t want to brag or anything, but I was the nicest kid anyone could ever meet… until (DUH DUH DUH) middle school. In middle school, I think the devil possessed my body (not literally, but my parents may disagree). If there was an argument to be had… oh boy did we have it.
When high school rolled around, I stopped fighting with my parents so much and started focusing on sports and my education, but couldn’t wait to get out of the house! Then it was time to go to college. I chose a University that was two hours away and planned on living on campus, but by the second week of classes I was a full blown commuting student. I missed my parents!
I love my life here in the Hudson Valley, but I’m not going to lie, I had a very difficult time when I first moved here. I would cry at least once a day because I felt guilty for leaving my family and because I just needed a “Morgan Hug” from my parents. Honestly, sometimes I just wanted to hear someone else say “y’all.”
I was making all these major life changes at one time (life-changing weight loss, moving away, renting my first apartment, getting my first real world job) it was difficult. Not a day goes by that I don’t speak to them either by text, phone, email or skype. I’m a true only child! My parents really do mean everything to me and although we talk constantly… nothing can compare to seeing them in person.
So, over the holidays I was lucky enough to be able to travel back to my hometown of Monroe, North Carolina to visit my family. I haven’t seen my family in almost a year, so my mini family vacation was just what the doctor ordered! It’s so funny… no matter how old I get, when I’m with my parents I still feel like a kid. It seems I’ll always be my daddy’s “sweet pea” and my mom’s “Velcro baby.”
I invited my parents and aunt to come back to New York to see my new place. They ended up staying for two weeks. We had a blast! We explored the Hudson Valley and even went to NYC on New Years’ eve… We ended up in White Plains to see their ball drop because all the streets in Manhattan were closed by the time we got there, but we still had fun! Being snowed in a couple days and the close quarters didn’t help with a little bout of cabin fever, but in the end we all enjoyed ourselves.
I can’t wait for them to come back so we can go exploring the Hudson Valley again. Homemade breakfast, lunch and dinner everyday courtesy of my mom doesn’t hurt either!
I guess the purpose of this blog is to let all you parents out there know that even if you’re going through tough times with your teens, tween or even toddlers, it will get better. In my case, mother and father know best. It just takes time for us to all figure that out.
This morning a masked gunman entered Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut. 27 people were killed including 18 children. Several others are being treated for wounds.
I’m not exactly sure what to say right now, but I feel the need to say something.
Although I do not know anyone directly affected by the shooting, I have this unwavering desire to break down and cry. I read story after story today of students recounting what went on during the shooting.
One student said he and his classmates got sick to their stomachs after hearing police officers on roof. In interview with WABC television, Brendan Murray, a student at Sandy Hook Elementary, said he was in the gym when he heard a banging sound. He first thought a custodian had knocked something over, but then he heard a scream.
“Then a police came in and was like, ‘Is he in here?’ Then he ran out,” Murray said. “And then somebody yelled, ‘Get to a safe place!’ So we went to the closet in the gym.”
No child should ever have to go though something so horrific.
Parents send their children to school with the notion that they are going to be safe. How dare this gunman come in and kill these innocent children that are just trying to get a solid education… Why is that fair? Children should not have to fear for their lives each day they go to school.
October is, by far, my favorite month of the year… Sweater season gets ushered in by the cooler weather, trees are adorned with colorful leaves, candy apples and cider make their first debut of the year and the Yankees are in the playoffs.
There is no doubting the fact that I’m a sports junkie. After all, my first word was baseball. I’m passionate about several things, but baseball and hockey top the list. Major League Baseball has been running the same postseason commercial for the last million or so years… The theme of the advertisement is “you can’t script October,” meaning that anything can happen in playoff baseball.
From Don Larsen’s perfect game, Reggie Jackson’s three homer game to Aaron Boone’s walk-off homerun against the Red Sox (please don’t remind me of the 2001 playoffs)… it’s true, you can’t predict what’s going to happen in baseball. So last night, my boyfriend, Bill, and I went to Game 4 of the ALDS (That’s the “American League Division Series,” for all you Mets fans that aren’t sure what the playoffs are!).
Last night’s game was speeding right along. Neither the Yankees nor the Orioles were doing much offensively. It was a 1-0 Orioles game going into the bottom of the sixth. Luckily, Robinson Cano was able to get the Yankees’ first RBI of the game to tie it up at 1 going into the seventh. At this point it was 10:30pm. I remember looking around and seeing tired faces of moms, dads and school age children.
Eventually the game went into extra innings… 13 of them to be exact. Not a single person (that I could see) left the game early. It was [almost] reminiscent of the real stadium. Everyone was on their feet each time the Yankees stepped up to the plate. The one thing, besides the game itself, that stuck out to me was this little boy, who was cheering right along with the best of ‘em the entire game. He couldn’t have been more than 7 years old.
The game ended well after midnight, but there the little boy was, sulking in defeat after the game. He and his parents stayed for the entire game! I wondered how tired the little boy would be at school today. If he’s as tired as I am, shame on his parents.
That being said, I can’t say that I blame his parents. When I was in school, my parents allowed me to stay up for sporting events. I never really had a “bedtime,” mainly because I loved to sleep. There were several school days where I was sluggish because I stayed up watching sports the night before, but you know what… I enjoyed myself.
When I was in high school, the Yankees played their first game in Japan. I woke up at some obscure hour in the morning just to watch the game. It was unforgettable, but I thought I was going to die of exhaustion during math class. I always wonder how parents decide when late is too late. If the little boy was at home last night instead of at the game, would his parents have made him go to bed or did they want him to witness legends in the making?
“But mom, it’s only the sixth inning!” What would your response be if your child said this to you on a school night? Personally, I’d let my child stay up to watch the game and bet on him falling asleep on the couch before the final out.
I must admit… I’m a BIG fan of Dance Moms on Lifetime. Honestly, I get sick of hearing people bash the overbearing dance teacher, Abby. Sure, she’s tough on her dancers… but hey, that’s life!
I took jazz, tap and ballet when I was younger. I was never on a competition squad, so at the end of each year the entire dance studio got a trophy for participating. I LOVED my trophies! I even had my dad build a display case for all my awards.
Then reality hit. I started playing basketball and softball and little did I know only one team, roughly 14 elementary schoolers out of hundreds would get a trophy at the end of the year. My team went to the championship game that first year. Unfortunately, we lost 21 to 18 (yes, I still remember the score).
At the end of season banquet that featured every team in the league, the commissioner handed out trophies to the MVP, Rookie of the Year and to the champions. Everyone else was called up on stage to be recognized and left the stage sans trophy. I was devastated. I didn’t understand why I didn’t get a trophy.
My parents had to explain to me the entire concept of winning and losing. I’m pretty sure this was the day my obsession with winning started.
My point here is, every child does not need a trophy. Sports teach so many great lessons to kids. From teaching team work to sportsmanship, athletics are great for children! So, why are we going back on all the lessons we’ve taught throughout the season by giving everyone a trophy at the end?
As mean as Abby Lee Miller is on Dance Moms, she does make sure all her dancers are prepared for the harsh reality of the real world. She lets each child know where they stand and always offers ways to improve. I sort of admire her in that respect. Could she calm down a bit on the yelling, sure… but her lesson in dealing with the real world is one to admire.
Do you think every child should get a trophy? Comment below!
Mayor Bloomberg has been all over the news lately. First he wants to take away soda and now he’s decided to take away baby formula! Okay, so he’s still in the process of turning his plans into laws, but who knows… it could pass. If his new plans pass, new moms will no longer receive samples of baby formula in their “new mom gift baggies” the hospital hands out. Bloomberg’s goal in taking away formula is to reduce obesity. He says formula-fed babies are more likely to be obese than breast-fed babies.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Medical Association (AMA), the American Dietetic Association (ADA) and the World Health Organization (WHO) all recommend breastfeeding as the best option for babies. They believe breastfeeding helps defend against infections, prevent allergies and protect against a number of chronic conditions. The AAP suggests breastfeeding exclusively for the first six months. They suggest continuing breastfeeding until the mother and baby are both willing to give it up. (Cheap Plug: Visit our facebook page: www.facebook.com/hvparentmag to see our community chatter about the mom on Time magazine breastfeeding her 3 year old… now back to your regularly scheduled blog).
I have to be honest with you all. Breastfeeding is obviously a healthy choice, but I don’t think it’s suitable for everyone. In tough economic times like we face today, mothers simply can’t afford to be out of work for extended periods of time after giving birth. Formula offers these busy moms a means to feed their child and go back to work at the same time… HELLO, diapers don’t grow on trees!
I posted this topic on our facebook page (www.facebook.com/hvparentmag) not knowing if we’d get a huge response. Less than 20 minutes after posting, we had over 50 comments. The conversation was wonderful. We had moms and dads both sounding off on the topic! I wanted to share some of my favorite comments with you…
Kristyn Wesdorp Wosneski – “Seriously??? I HATE it when men stick their noses into women’s business like this. When he has the ability to breastfeed, then he can have a say in the topic. Granted, breast is best, but if for some reason a new mom can’t do it, is an alcoholic, does drugs, what have you, having that formula in the new mom bag might actually help out in a bind.”
Courtney Durfee – ” If 90% practiced exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months, US health care savings would be $13 billion/year and would save 911 lives. Saved health care costs is $532 per infant a year.
Michele Rothstein Dolbin – In my situation, it was my baby who refused to nurse. She even refused pumped milk in the bottle. I felt guilty for YEARS. But she’s 12 – thin as a rail and fit as a fiddle.
Mari Martinez – This should not be an issue of MONEY! It should be the mother’s decision, after all that is what AMERICA is suppose to provide us with… the ability to make our OWN DECISIONS. Enough of the government trying to control our every move. Obviously breast feeding is the best, but if the mother is unable to breast feed then what? Shame on those who feel otherwise!
Michelle Amodio- How about giving mothers the time off from their jobs to successfully breastfeed? Education, time and work is required [for breastfeeding]. Pumping in an office or bathroom doesn’t make it better or easier. And I’m a mom who formula fed her baby for reasons that, well, no one needs to know why, because it’s none of their business. But if you want women to succeed, give them the time they need with their babies, don’t hide formula.
Galia Kisiova – Of course breast feeding is best, but come on, one can breast feed for 3 years and then follow up with junk food, lack of exercise and lack of example…it’s a choice…I saw Bloomberg’s proposal a few days ago and coming from Europe, I have only one comment-”Give mothers a year PAID maternity leave like they do in Europe and the number of breast-fed babies will increase without any measures… And I agree, it’s a personal choice, like so many issues with having/raising children. One can have an opinion, but one should also learn to respect others’ choices. While we are on it, who will address the fact that food stamps are spent on chips/juices/other junk food..and maybe come up with a law that makes parents, who receive free state health insurance for their kids, sign them up and actually attend sports activities…there are so many other measures that could save money…taking a box of formula out of a bag and making a mother feel guilty, in my opinion, is a poor choice.
(Another shameless plug in 3…2…1…) See how awesome our facebook conversations are! If you haven’t liked us already, you’re missing out!
Although we all said it in different ways (some with shouty capitals, some with explicit language and others with less fervor), we all pretty much agreed that the option to breastfeed should be left up to the mother. Now, don’t get me wrong… Bloomberg is not taking formula off the shelves; he just wants to make it illegal for hospitals to give new moms samples of formula in their “new mom gift bags.” The decision is still up to the mom, but why should women that decide to breastfeed get more help in the hospital (often nurses give crash courses on the breastfeeding process after the delivery) than moms that decide to use formula? I don’t think this is fair at all.
I’m curious as to what all you moms and dads out there think about this issue. Don’t forget to leave your comments below!
I’ve been called the “black sheep” in my family so many times; I don’t even know where to begin.
Every woman in my family works in the public schools system, but I refused to go to school to be a teacher.
My entire family lives within a 10 mile radius from the epicenter of Monroe, North Carolina… I live 12 hours away in Wappingers Falls, New York.
I hate country music, but my family was raised on bluegrass.
I’m a progressive thinker even though my family is a bit old fashioned.
But, the one thing that really made me realize I was the black sheep early on in life is my love of sports, not to mention my sheer hatred for cheerleading.
One night before I shipped off to New York, my parents and I were watching my old baby videos. There was a video taken of everyone hanging out in the waiting room of the hospital on the day I was born. Everyone was joking around saying “If Nelson (my dad) comes out and says it’s a girl, it’ll be a boy.” My dad is the ultimate jokester.
Minutes later, my dad bursts through the doors announcing the birth of their new baby girl. My grandma shouted, “well, I guess we’ll have a cheerleader instead of a baseball player.” To which my dad replied, “we’ll see about that.” **It’s important to note that my dad was the local high school’s baseball coach, he actually had to leave a game early to come to the hospital for my birth, he was in his uniform during my delivery. **
Growing up, I didn’t have much of a choice as to what extracurricular activities I participated in. My mom did the only thing she knew to do with little girls and signed me up for cheerleading as soon as I was old enough to walk.
At one particularly painful cheerleading practice, I was punished for watching the football game when I was supposed to be cheering (hey, I was standing on the sidelines and got caught up in the moment). I don’t know what possessed me to talk back to my coach, but I said to her “Well maybe I’d rather be playing a sport than being a glorified fan.” She stood there agape. “It’s not like cheerleaders ever won a game for a team before, we’re just supposed to stand there and look pretty.”
I went home that night and cried in my pillow afraid that I had gotten myself kicked off the team. I just knew that my family would be so ashamed of me. After about an hour of sobbing, I realized… so what if she kicks me off the team, I don’t like cheering anyway!
I told my dad that I wanted to quit cheerleading and take up organized softball and basketball. He was elated. My mom wasn’t so happy, although she warmed up to the idea after she saw my enthusiasm.
The next day I made the announcement to my mom’s side of the family, cue the dirty looks and astonished faces. After some heavy guilt trips, I decided I needed to do what made me happy.
My first season as a softball player was great, my dad was one of the coaches and my BFF (laura)’s dad was the other coach. I was a natural pitcher and I don’t mind bragging on how awesome I was. I went on to play softball and basketball in high school. During my sophomore year, I began getting the attention of the local papers and colleges. When I was a senior, the scholarship offers started to roll in.
I think I made the right choice.
The point though, is what do you do when your child doesn’t want to participate in the extracurricular activity that you’d like them to participate in?
- Accept it. If you were a budding young artist, but your child wants to play football, accept it. Plain and simple. Your child isn’t trying to defy you; they just want something to call their own. You should be happy that you raised a child feels comfortable enough to go outside of their comfort zone and try new things. AND FOR GOODNESS SAKES, DON’T MAKE YOUR CHILD FEEL LIKE A BLACK SHEEP!
- Lay off the guilt trips! Just because you were a star athlete doesn’t mean your child has to be. Never make your child feel guilty for wanting to try new things.
- Research. If your child wants to play baseball and you’re not sure what the difference between a sac fly and a home run is… we have a problem. Go to your local library and check out some books on the activity your child wants to participate in, that way you’ll be able to help your child improve their skills. Not to mention, no child wants their parents screaming RUN on a foul ball.
- Give encouragement. Every child wants the approval of their parents. Once your child begins a new activity, encourage them to do the best they can and offer to help them practice their new skills.
“The best laid plans of mice and men often go astray (or awry depending on whom you talk to).”
This phrase holds true in so many aspects of life… especially dieting! This week, I have been on my family vacation in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. It’s a great family-oriented beach with amazing amenities. I just love it here. I hope to one day retire here… it’s so peaceful.
The boardwalk at Rehoboth is like my own personal heaven. They have carnival rides, carnival games, arcade games, souvenir shops… oh yeah, and TONS of food stands and restaurants.
Now, I wouldn’t necessarily say I’m on a diet; I’ve just changed my eating habits dramatically. Nevertheless, I’m still trying to cut back on my portions and eat healthy foods instead of the greasy fried foods I used to eat constantly… I guess that’s pretty much a diet, isn’t it.
I made a vow to myself that I would do whatever necessary to avoid gaining weight while on vacation. Last year, I gained 5 pounds while I was there for 2 weeks!!!!
I’ve been pretty good so far. One vacation night a year is always designated “eat ‘til you pop” night. We go to the Rusty Rudder, which is a really nice restaurant/seafood buffet. The entire family orders the same thing each year… the land and sea buffet. This year, I opted for the grilled chicken salad.
I was quite content with my salad, even though family members constantly tried to make me “taste” various things off their plate. I kindly refused and felt great about myself at the end of the night.I’ve been good all week and didn’t eat any of the local cuisine that I love.
Each day before heading to the beach, I packed a little cooler filled with fresh veggies, water and tuna salad so I would never be tempted by the boardwalk food. Everything was going great, I even lost 1 pound!
However, today was a completely different story. I leave Delaware tomorrow night and as soon as I woke up yesterday morning I started reaching for the Dollies Saltwater Taffy!
I made my way to the beach and plopped down in the sand. Around noon I started catching a whiff of Gus ‘n Gus’ famous cheese steaks. Then a group of teenagers sat down next to our umbrellas with a big box of
Grotto pizza, Thrasher’s boardwalk fries and a large gelati.
There were so many “native” Rehoboth foods that I didn’t even get to enjoy this vacation… I had to eat them all before I left or vacation just wouldn’t be the same! So starting at 12:15, (I resisted my urge for 15 minutes… that should count for something right?) I started my binge through Rehoboth.
First up was a small cheese steak from Gus ‘n Gus, then some fries from Thrashers. For a snack I had passion fruit polish icewater, then mango gelati for good measure (obviously, I ate over the course of the day… I didn’t go “hog wild” all at once). For dinner, I chomped down a slice of Grotto pizza and a Kohr Brother’s frozen custard for dessert.
Now, as I sit writing this, I’ve got my hair pulled back and a trash pale by my side. I couldn’t sleep at all last night. I guess my system isn’t used to all the greasy foods and the large portions anymore. Why, oh why did I do this to myself?!?!
I guess I’ve learned my lesson. I’m sure if I would have eaten the same foods in moderation, I would have been okay. It’s interesting how we can associate food with memories…. That’s my biggest problem. Food has always had an emotional pull with me.
From eating chicken ‘n dumplins at my grandma’s house every Sunday to eating Grotto pizza in Delaware, each dish represents a happy time in my life. It’s sort of sick if you think about it. I know this is something that I must continually work to overcome. Maybe I’ll get the hang of it one day. But for now… I’ll spend my last day in Delaware with my head hung over the toilet bowl.
So, there you have it… my cautionary tale of diets and vacation.
Remember: In this game we call life, moderation is everything!