Exercise

Last Week of my Squat, Crunch, and Sit up challenge was an epic failure

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I’ve been pretty good for the most part, since I started my life style change, in February. I would probably rate myself a B+. I have tried all the challenges and activities, when they were scary and completely foreign. I don’t tend to back away from challenges. I’ll try most things at least once.

What happened?

I twisted my knee some kinda way. I hurt it really bad. I could climb stairs, but walking down them were just horrific! My ligament in my knee felt like it was twisting, each time I moved it. It was swollen, also. So that’s that, and how my week ended. Then I went on a week-long binge. So, when I say it was an epic failure, I am so serious! Mary Ann came to visit, and I went on a sugar binge like never before. It was all good bad stuff, so I just stayed in that.

Where I am now?

Well, JJ Smith has introduced another challenge, which was the reason we ended the challenge early. We are on a 10 day smoothie cleanse, which started yesterday. You can either do the full cleanse or the modified. I’ve never been able to fully commit to the full cleanse. From where I was just a couple of days ago, I am not even going to set myself up for failure. So, I am working up to the modified cleanse. I’ve reintroduced one smoothie to my meal plan a day, with two clean meals. I started great yesterday; today was another very good day (minus my lunch), and I’ve ended the night with my smoothie.

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I am going to cut my meats back, and consumed more cooked veggies, for my meal plan, during these next 10 days. Milk is gone again, also. See ya! In addition to my 50000 IU of vitamin D, per my endocrinologist, I will consume an extra 2000 IU per day.

Day 2 is officially done. I never stopped my detoxing. i still do my body brushing; I consume all of my vitamins; I drank my detox teas. I really like that stuff; it’s like pampering myself.

As far as the physical part, we are doing a squat challenge. I am not even going to attempt it. I am going to start the squat, crunch, and sit up challenge over, minus the squats at this time. JJ says this is to give you a pretty round booty, but I have enough booty. I need some help with these arms and gut. So, I think I will ask for help on modifying this a bit. My job has trainers at our disposal, so I will be using this GREAT benefit!

So, here we go!

Good night, everyone!

Day 6 of DHEMM

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Well, it’s been hard. Harder than expected. Cutting out white foods are not the problem, it’s those dang squats. I have never pushed my body this much, except when I broke my leg. I lost about 15 lbs just trying to get off my bed and use the bedroom. I broke all three bones that connects my foot to my lower leg, including my fibula. To repair it, a plate and eight screws added for stability. Two of the screws were drilled through my fibula into my tibia. I had started working with a trainer, about 6 months afterwards, which caused me to break one of the screws. Needless to say, I had to have a second surgery to remove the two long screws. There will always be a piece of the screw embedded in my tibia. The second surgery allowed me the ability to move and use my leg the way it is meant. The only problem I have now is that I can feel it, when I apply pressure on that leg, i.e. squats. It doesn’t hurt, but I am well aware of the metal presence.

What i do know is that I am not a workout girl. So, whether I had the injury or not, this would still be difficult. Trying to get your big body to do what it needs is not an easy task. I do know that I am starting to lose inches again. I don’t measure. I snap pictures, which I haven’t done in a while. I may do some today. I am also aware that my clothes are looser. I’ve increased my protein intake, to help continue build my muscles. I think the squats are going to really help me with my Color Vibe run coming up. So, I am absolutely committed to completing this challenge, although it is not perfect. I don’t think perfect is the intent anyways; it’s the effort.

I went to my endocrinologist on Friday to check my Vitamin D levels. My levels should have increased for sure. I’ll find out this week what my numbers are. I also went to see a dermatologist, for my itchy skin. I have assumed that I have a food allergy, but I think it’s my detergent. I changed up everything I use externally, such as soap, lotion, detergent, and moisturizers. The itching had gotten better immediately, after washing my clothes and bedding, which is why I am almost certain it’s my detergent. We shall continue to see.

Day 6 following DHEMM challenge was my best day, although I ate like a trash compactor (I had white everything). Not only did I take my daughter to a day trip to Carolina Beach, NC, where I soaked up as much Vitamin D possible, I came home and did all of my exercises:  55 squats, 30 crunches, and 15 sit ups. I had an exceptional Fitbit day as well. check out my numbers:

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As you all can see, I am still absolutely committed to changing my life. My process is slow. You are not going to come here and see me posting 5-10 lbs lose in a three-week period. This is truly me making an honest effort to change the way I think and live my newfound healthy life. If I gave perfect, then you should know I am lying. These are things I want to continue, for the rest of my life. I am not interested in temporary or fast fixes, which is how JJ Smith teaches anyways.

Help! I’ve lost my mind!

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Color Race

Today, I paid for and secured a ticket to run my first 5K race, The Color Race. Whoa! I am terrified and excited all at the same time. This is something I never thought I’d ever do again, especially after suffering the level and type of break in my lower right leg. What! I never thought this would become my life. I don’t want to fool anyone. It’s nothing I’ve ever considered either, until I decided to get on this lifestyle change journey. It’s shocking!

When I saw it, I just clicked on it, and paid for it, then thought about it. Had I not done that, I wouldn’t have registered. I want to take more chances; I want to live free, honestly, and unafraid of any type of challenge. I have two months to prepare and get ready. Everyone talks about the Couch to 5K app. So, I’ll download that and get moving!

I am so excited! Are you ready to go on this journey with me??

Oh my lord!! Let us pray QUICK!

Much is required, all is given

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Saturday was my big, big day to really push myself physically. I sat a goal of 15000 steps. Yesterday was amazing, challenging, and absolutely fun. This new lifestyle has been full of surprises. I am able to run 1/4 of a mile now. I can’t believe it. I am working up to a 1/2 miles now. I can jog in place for almost 10 minutes. However, I don’t think it’s the same as actually running on pavement, and the feeling of the jolt to your bones, especially on my bad leg. I am so proud of myself.

Yesterday, my goal was just to keep up with the bike:

This is how I finished for the entire day:

I am getting stronger! I am getting stronger and so much better! I am just so grateful and thankful. I hope this really helps and enlightens somebody else’s life. It’s not a smooth or perfect journey, but it’s a journey, and it’s HAPPENING!!

Ain’t everyday, a girl can say her panties have become bloomers!

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For the past couple of weeks, I have been under the weather. I was also taking an antibiotic. I do not know if it caused the swelling, but I had a lot swelling in my hands, legs, and feet. It was harsh looking at my scale. But, I knew that I had to keep going, and not get discouraged. I am finally off of the medication. I got on the scale today, and I have not only hit my short-term goal of 20 pounds lost, but I have exceeded it by 1.8 additional pounds. Holy guacamole! I have now successfully gotten off 32.8 pounds, and how wonderful it feels.

I knew going in, with the decision to lose weight, as I actually lived, was not easy, and an extremely slow process. I am in the same situation that many Americans are, unemployed, living on very little income. I can’t afford the gym, organic foods, or the fancier boost. I am losing weight through the use of everyday activities that I have to do around the house, with a boost of music, such as chasing behind my 18 month old, dancing while washing dishes and vacuuming, grocery shopping (which I extend to about an hour), and 15 minute walks with my little one, most days of the week. I figure I just need to move, and it doesn’t matter where or how often, as long as I am doing it.

Everyday activities are often not thought about as exercise, but it is. If I turn on Maroon 5, and Move Like Jagger, everyday activities can become a full-blown workout! I love that song, and who can possibly sit down and not get your boogie on when that creation of art is playing? Also, my baby is learning to jump, so I’ve come up with a game where we jump, shake, and dance!  She can’t do it, unless I am, right?

Food is becoming less of a prison for me. I wanted to go through this process eating what I wanted, and could afford, with some changes. If I want fried chicken, I cook, and eat it. However, I take the skin off. It has made a huge difference, in my weight loss journey. Thankfully, I am not a huge fried chicken girl, I prefer it baked or boiled, which I still take the skin off. Smaller portion sizes have been a nice weapon also. I am never hunger, because of fillers, my fruits and vegetables, which are not very costly.

I am losing weight on a tight to none existing budget, and I am over the moon that my panties are becoming bloomers! I am losing weight from head to toe, and I feel fantastic!!!!!! Where there is a will, there is a way!

Oh and my BMI has dropped an entire point! I am going to say it, even though I prefer not to curse in my blogs, but HOT DAMN!!!

Tracking my food

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I feel a need to go back to the basics. My energy level is down, and I need a boost. I am sure it is coming from my illness that lasted longer than I like. I started out tracking my food. I tracked everything, using the point system of Weight Watchers. It has been about 6 weeks, since I last did it consistently. I found success, but I feel like I am in a plateau, and I need to move past where I am now. I have a Nook, fantastic creation, and I was able to buy an APP for only $3 that works the same as the one online. If something else pops up in my life, managing them both, becomes more difficult. With the tracking (time management), I am consciously thinking about everything that I put in my body.

It worked marvelously for me, in the beginning. When I am more conscious about my food, I make sure that I am eating enough fruits and vegetables, and not absolutely feeding myself to get rid of the hunger. If I am not thinking ahead, about my food, it becomes too easy to reach in the cupboard and pull out the easiest food to prepare, rather than the healthiest.

My late hours have knocked me off of my sleep patterns, where I was making sure I got at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep. I corrected that last night. Sleeping helps me feel better, and gives me a really nice boast for the rest of the day. I will dust off my Zumba Wii game today. My daughter likes to dance alone with me. We had not been walking, until a couple of days ago, and she had her first face plant, on the sidewalk, which messed up her nose and lips. We haven’t been out since.

So today, I start all over again, with more activities, but indoors!

There’s nothing wrong with starting over, either. Perfect is not my solution, losing weight, safely and lasting is.

How much does your BMI cost you?

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I am seriously beginning to understand and know my friend better. I want us up close and personal. My body mass index (BMI) isn’t very cute, actually she’s quite fugly. However, there is beauty in her, I just need to dig dip and pull it out, because I know it’s there. Since beginning my weight loss journey, December 2011, I have decreased my BMI by 3.82. It sure doesn’t seem like much, but it sure wasn’t easy.

There are four categories, according to the CDC: underweight, normal, overweight, and obesity.  Each group is assigned to a numerical scale, which will correlate with a person’s suggested BMI.

BMI
Weight   Status
Below   18.5 Underweight
18.5 –   24.9 Normal
25.0 –   29.9 Overweight
30.0 and Above Obese

This number will also be used to decide statistical groups of high risk for diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, etc. This means that we are judged and placed in a group that may or may not seem positive and ill-defined, whether we like it or not. Whether I approve is a non-factor, because so many are trying to grasp and control the growing number of obesity. This number gives a starting point.

This is not the only use for this number. Employers and insurance groups are also finding use in this number. An individual’s premium rates can be determined by their BMI (Associate Press 2007). Using the BMI, an insurance group make decisions of whether you are a high risk person or not. And if you are not in the healthy weight group, then the assumption is that you are overweight, and could potentially need more health care coverage than others. Yes, you have now been reduced to a dollar, and this is not going to help your self-esteem, in the least bit, but it is a reality.

An employer who is self-funded has a tremendous amount of clout, in determining the structure of their health care policies. For instance, if you are a smoker, I have seen employer groups that offer health care policies for smokers and non-smokers, where the smokers’ premium rates are slightly higher. This same process, although not widely used, is an option for an employer group using the BMI.

Insurance rates are rapidly increasing, and until the last stage of the Health Care Reform Act in 2014, there isn’t anything that can be done. The rates may only increase by 10 to 15%, for example; however, if you are a family of 4 and your per pay period premium rate, for a PPO plan, is $450, it will increase by $517.50-540.00. This is a considerable increase, especially when you consider your deductibles and co-insurances. Now, consider a chronic illness, such as diabetes or high blood pressure, with a policy that has a lifetime max of $500,000. Depending on your level of obesity, the actual diagnosis, and severity of your diagnosis, you very well could exceed that half million dollars. Then what?

Body Mass Index and Average Premiums
Average Premiums ($)
BMI
Weight Status
Female
Male
Overall
Below 18.5
Underweight
$172/month
$157/month
$169/month
18.5 – 24.9
Normal
$180/month
$143/month
$164/month
25.0 – 29.9
Overweight
$211/month
$172/month
$185/month
30.0 and Above
Obese
$221/month
$187/month
$201/month
Percent increase in average premiums from Normal to Obese:
22.8%
30.8%
22.6%
Policyholders in the ‘Obese’ BMI category pay 22.6% more on average than those in the ‘Normal’ BMI category (Ehealth 2011)

With that being said, quite often there are incentives offered to lower your BMI and weight, by most employers and insurance groups. Although, the incentives are nice, I feel that mandatory training and education should come with it. The education should include food and nutrition, exercise tips and management, and/or behavior counseling.  At this point, the consumers have had time to properly invest in education and training, and if the decision is to not heed the assistance provided, then it allows probable cause to penalize (increase premiums) the consumers.

I believe this will be the new future. There’s promise in this practice. In addition, I believe the government should follow the same practice, with the health care reform act: educate, apply, and effectively enhance a chance for success in weight loss.

References:

Associated Press (2007). Shrink your BMI–and your insurance bill. MSNBC. Retrieved from http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17385151/ns/health-fitness/t/shrink-your-bmi-your-insurance-bill/

Ehealth (2011). eHealth Data Shows that Smokers and Overweight Consumers Pay More for Individual Health Insurance. Retrieved from http://news.ehealthinsurance.com/pr/ehi/ehealth-data-shows-that-smokers-221171.aspx