Friday, January 31, 2014

Weekly Weigh-In (#29) & Friday Five

It's slow, it's small, but I have been losing each week. I still bumped up into the 150s. I'm hoping that maybe this next week will be the one where I don't do that. Except it IS Superbowl Sunday, and although we aren't a big football fan family, we do usually have a Superbowl Smorgasbord (just a traditional steak/chicken BBQ). Monday morning might be a problem ...

This past week, I felt like Fri & Sat were pretty controlled. Sunday had higher intake with a lower burn, and I was off my routine on Monday. Back on track Tuesday-Thurs. Upped the exercise, kept calories in control. You can see details in my Day to Day Doings. Overall I felt it was a good week.

Number Crunch: Down .4 from last week, but my average weight was down 1.15 (150.76 last week to 149.61 this week). I thought my deficit for the week would be higher, but it came in at just 2500 - under my 3500 (500 a day) goal. Average intake 2121. Average burn 2819.

As I'm a bit boring this week (no other fun stories or images) ...  I thought I'd link up with Friday Five (Eat Pray Run),  Five Things Friday (Fitting It All In),  and  Five on Friday (The Good Life).

**Five Fitness Moments From My Week**
  1. Elliptical 100: 100 minutes on my elliptical in a day (it used to be a regular thing, but it's actually been a while since I did that. I've been getting in 60minutes almost every day though).
  2. Dance Steps: I went to Zumba again ... ok, not an uber impressive burn (the instructor also teaches Jazzercise to 80 year olds and some of that rolls over I think. Not that I have any experience with any other instructor/class). But it's close, convenient and free ...
  3. 10 by 10: 10,000 steps by 10 a.m.  Always nice to get up and at it early!
  4. Pact Payments: I joined PACT with the New Year, now that they auto sync with Fitbit (10,000 steps equals a "workout") and MFP (logging three meals, 12,000 calories ... you can go over, I always go over). I didn't commit to 7-days a week just to give me some wiggle room, but I haven't missed a day.
  5. Almost 30K: I should have walked around the kitchen a couple more times last night to hit 30k ... hubby gives me a footrub if I hit 30k (but he was already asleep).

 So that was MY week at a glance.
Check in with the Follow Through Friday gals and recap your week!
Aubrey Leigh//Candra//Jodi//Mel//Val//Cait//Jacquelyn//Jennifer
Also linking up with Fitness Friday at Fitness, Health and Happiness.
Almost time for the end of the month recap & review!
Month one of 2014 down at the end of the day.
February starts tomorrow!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Pin It Party (LGB#4)

It's a Pin it Party ... hosted by Lindsay and The Lean Green Bean. It's a chance for you to spotlight some of your previous posts that you think others would enjoy, and even "pin" on Pinterest (you can see MY Pinterest page here). If you go back to the link-up, you'll see that many are recipes and such, but I focus more on fitness than food (as I'm not inspirational in the eating area at all). Here are five of my posts that you may have missed that perhaps deserve a second look (at least I hope you might think so) and perhaps a pin to YOUR fitness/workout Pinterest boards ...

Did you know there are several programs that will donate to charity based on your activity? If you are working out anyway, you might as well pay it forward too!

A fitness rewards program that pays you! No risk (like Gym Pact or Diet Bets) but still a cash$$ reward. Just link up various devices and apps (Fitbit, Facebook, My Fitness Pal are three I use) and start earning. My review of MY Achievemint experience ...

A quick guide to the many 
abbreviations & acronyms 
used in the online fitness community.

I'm motivated by music, are you? A review of this website that lists the BPM of songs, lets you create playlists and check out other's favorite workout tunes.

While we're striving to look better through diet and exercise, this post offers some example and links to helpful articles to attempt to capture the skinny side when taking pictures. I know I need all the help I can get! *Ü*

Check out my post from the last Pin it Party too (Pin it Party #3).

Here's hoping one of these posts had some good information for you. Be sure to check out the link up and even join up yourself! Remember that pinning images from blog posts you love is a great way to support your favorite bloggers! It helps more people see the posts and can help the blogs grow. So check out some of the great posts that are linked up and pin away!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Grapefruit Memories

I had a grapefruit for breakfast this morning. I admit, I need to sprinkle a little sugar on it to sweeten it up. As I was eating, my mind drifted back to my childhood. My dad would take the grapefruit seeds (there was usually one or two in each fruit), poke a hole in a planter near the kitchen, and push the seed down into the dirt. We'd always have little "grapefruit trees" coming up in various potted plants. Of course after the initial growth, the conditions in the home weren't conducive to grapefruit tree growth and the little plants would wither away. But my dad was always adding new seeds as grapefruit came across the breakfast rotation. 

I like grapefruit, but it's not something I eat a ton of. I usually go in spurts, but maybe that's because I'll buy the big bag of them from Sam's Club (not just one or two here and there at the grocery store). I like the "ruby red" ... the pink just isn't appealing to me at all (I'm really affected by sight, smell, anticipation of texture, often actual taste never even comes into play. I have Eating Issues).

I went a little overboard with the citrus at Sam's the other day ...
I picked up a big bag of grapefruit ... they were huge and there were six-eight in each bag. I grabbed some clementines ... so much easier to peel than oranges, and a bit more bit size as well. I prefer the early season ones (Nov/Dec) more than the Spring ones (which are more mandarin oranges).  I picked up a big bag of oranges too, they just looked so big and beautiful. I was disappointed in them when I got home and tried to offer it for eating. It was almost impossible to peel and the rind portion was really large. The oranges aren't really getting eaten. 

I need to keep an eye on the pears ripening in the background too!

Another grapefruit memory I have was in college. I was visiting a friend, and her roommate offered me a grapefruit for breakfast, which I accepted. The roommate proceeded to "prep" the grapefruit for me. She took a knife and ran it all along the outer edge, then the repeated the process along each inner membrane. I'd never prepped a grapefruit to this extent, but I had to admit, it really made it easier to eat! I thought "this gal is going to make a great mommy!" and I've prepped my grapefruit this way ever since!  Anyone else out there do this?

I need to ask my dad if he still "plants" random seeds from his fruit. Or I guess I could just examine the planters next time I am over, see if I can see any of the little "trees" growing there.  Just for fun ... I poked MY seed from breakfast into one of our planters. I'll have to remember to watch it. *Ü*

Linking up with What I Ate Wednesday. Check it out to see what bloggers from all over are having for breakfast, lunch and dinner, today and all throughout the week!

Do YOU have any grapefruit memories?

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Back on Track Tuesday and Some Fitbit Tips

Yesterday wasn't my typical Monday. Usually I'm rip roaring and ready to go again after the weekend. But yesterday, I just had some things that disrupted my usual schedule. I'd started some room rearranging yesterday and still had a ton of cleanup and organization to do. The repair man was coming to look at the dryer and YEA, he was able to fix it.  I really AM  ecstatic I can do laundry again (and I got in a couple loads yesterday, the rest of the catch up today and tomorrow). Hubby and I were given season tickets to a local theater, and the production was ending this week. A 4:00 matinee yesterday was the only show left with available tickets (we need to plan ahead a bit better for the next shows!) Then my folks came over for dinner and games. So other than the two elliptical sessions in the morning (my green spikes on my Fitbit graph), I didn't get in my usual gym time. I didn't hit my goals ... but I DID exceed myself on stairs! All the running up and down the stairs as I was moving things and putting stuff away. My step count and burn were actually pretty dang good for only 40 min of dedicated exercise, AND with a couple hours of just sitting ... you can SEE my sitting on the Fitbit activity graph!

So today (Tuesday) was MY Monday!
I got up and hit the elliptical first thing like I almost always do. I went to Zumba at the church as I have the past couple weeks. Back at home, I hurried and jumped on the elliptical for a couple of minutes just to hit 10,000 steps by 10 a.m.  That's a goal I used to have several years ago, but not something I do regularly any more!

While I was syncing my Fitbit to my app, I looked at the order of my stats and wished they were different. I'd tried halfheartedly to move them around before but hadn't had success. I took it a step further today and googled it and found the answer (in the app, go to "Edit", then hold your finger on the three lines to the right, which will allow you to move the different sections... THAT was the part I hadn't figured out on my own experimentation). I like having MY most important stats at the top. I don't care about distance, floors are interesting, but I want my steps, calories and active minutes right there! (In the image above, the one on the left was this morning, before I made changes, and the one of the right is after,

This is a handy tip for everyone who has a Fitbit and uses the app. If you want to rearrange the order, or remove any particular stat (say "weight" ... if you have someone looking at you app and you don't want to advertise that). 

I tried jumping online and seeing if I could rearrange the order of the stats  on my device itself, but I wasn't able to move them around (although you can turn them off, which I have done to the "chatter" function, I just thought that was silly.) I hadn't eliminated anything else yet, but I think I'll take off "floors" and "distance" and just check those on the app or online if I want that information. Fewer stats to scroll through when I'm checking my device itself. 

I also personalized my greeting so that it displays my cell phone number. Just in case it falls out somewhere, maybe someone would figure out that it's a cell phone number and try to call or text ... 

Linking up with Tips and Tricks Tuesday. Well, I best get back to moving (instead of sitting here at my computer), I'm close to hitting my step goal, but my calorie goal is still a ways off.

Monday, January 27, 2014


The "theme" for Motivation Monday this week is healthy Superbowl treats. Now, honestly, "healthy treat" is pretty much an oxymoron to me ... if we're eating treats, they are not healthified in any way. I did make some sugar cookies decorated like footballs several years ago (pictured above). Just so I feel like I'm contributing a BIT to the actual theme, here's a link to some Baked Mozzarella Bites that look pretty good.  Here are a few other "Super Superbowl Snacks" you might want to check out from Barb, Sarah, Giselle and Ashley.

Our family just isn't a football family, we really don't even watch the Superbowl. BASKETBALL ... now that is a different thing all together. While the boys really love watching all the NBA games, they also all play. Basketball is a huge part of our life (Basketball Mom). It actually wasn't a great basketball week this week. Six games ... six losses. A heart breaker Saturday night in overtime. But it's all good. Losing teaches important lessons as well, and basketball keeps my boys moving and active

Of course we have a hoop out in front of the house ... it doesn't get too much action in the winter with the cold and snow. We also have a couple hoops around the house to keep the kids busy and moving even indoors. While writing this post, I can hear the sounds of a wild game going on. I snuck out and grabbed a couple pictures (the ones on the right) ...

There ARE sacrifices to having hoops in the house ... the picture at left is in the basement hallway. We attempted to repair the wall, only to have it broken again. The second hole is more recent (#5's shoulder ... he's ok, the wall, not so much!)  In the action shots, you can see a hole in the door as well. But it's better than them just sitting around playing video games or watching TV (although admittedly they still get plenty of those in too).

In addition to the physical damage to the house, the sound of the game ... the ball crashing into the hoop, the kids yelling, the slam of bodies and the pitter patter of feet ... it CAN get to me (it gets to Daddy pretty quick! The kids know to shut it down pretty quick once they get the stink eye from father!) I must admit I love it when the warm weather calls the kids outside.

We have the standard hoop out on the street (we are located on a circle, not much traffic). The first hoop we had was getting rather battered, so we invested in a new one ... but never got around to getting rid of the old one. The kids played on both, and then last year we moved the old hoop to the backyard by the trampoline. The boys really enjoyed bouncing, jumping and dunking the ball.

We also have a smaller hoop, 
the boys play on it almost as much as the big one!
So ... football isn't a big deal in our family. Basketball is. Knowing what your kids enjoy and providing them with an environment to keep them motivated to move will help keep kids happy and healthy! I LOVE watching my boys play ...want to see them in action?

My three oldest on one team (playing church ball).
My boys are numbers 11, 2 and 14

I'm feeling Motivated this Monday, but alas, it an off-kilter day. I started a moving/cleaning/organizing project yesterday that isn't done (and the house still needs a ton of work) and hubby and I have tickets to a show today (which will have me sitting for a few hours) ... so I doubting that I'll get to goal today. I'll just have to keep calories in check as weight is up as usual after the weekend. How about you? Ready to start the week? Link up with Grab Your Kicks, A Life in Balance, RunawayBridalPlanner, and of course MY Motivation Monday Team ...
Link up with Motivational Monday.
Share your story. Anything that motivates you or others!

My kids noticed the picture of the football cookies on my blog.
Now they want me to make them on Sunday ...

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Saturday Spotlight #12

I found a lot of links to share this week!
  • 7 Workout Habits You Should Drop Now: Oh dear, I do four of these with regularity. I love my elliptical though ...
  • Getting Ready for Group Exercise:I just tried my 1st group class this month (I Hope You Dance). I thought this article had some good information. 
  • More Than a Number: I don't watch live TV anymore (I wait until things hit DVD or Netflix) so I don't see commercials and that is usually a good thing. Talkless Saymore spotlighted some recent SpecialK commercials. Have you seen them? What do you think?
  • How Inactivity Affects The Brain: Interesting article ...
  • Food Diary Facts: Keeping a food diary (I use MFP) has made a huge difference for me. Check out this article for the hows and whys it's a good idea. Do you keep a food diary?
  • Positive Customer Service Challenge:  Not fitness related, but I thought this was a good article, and a good challenge. So often we'll go out of our way to report a negative experience, but do we put as much effort into praising the positive?
I'm always open to new blogs to check out, so I bookmarked a couple recent list recommendations from MFP  and Greatist.  I  have yet to check all of these out, but I plan to *Ü*

 US and Exercise
Utah rates pretty well ... I'm adding to those numbers!

For a little laugh ...
After this image is an "Old Spice" commercial.
Stick around for it! They are so creative.

The Healthy Helper Blog has a regular feature ... 
My Do A Little Good post made her list.

If you like posts like this (spotlighting interesting articles and blog posts), there are several out there! I've mentioned a few (Saturday Spotlight) but came across a couple more this week. 

Finally ... I thought I'd share my song of the week.  As I've been hitting the treadmill for my 5mph run (ok, jog), this song not only has a perfect rhythm, but it makes me smile and feel a little sassy. I remember when I first heard it. I was on the elliptical, working out while watching "Private Practice" and this song came on in the background while a couple of the guys had a one-on-one game of basketball. I really liked the song, so I grabbed my iphone, Shazzamed it and then went and bought it as soon as my workout was over. I hope you like it too!
Linking up with I Wore Yoga Pants to Work
check out the link-up for more song shares and share a song  you love!
Move a Little Faster 
Dionne Bromfield

Friday, January 24, 2014

Weekly Weigh-In (#28)

I could have slept in today ... the kids are out of school (teacher work day for the end of the quarter) but #2 had 6:30am basketball practice. Oh well, let's get started on the day! I was actually somewhat excited to step on the scale and see what it said this morning. Just two days ago on Wednesday (and Mon/Tues) I'd been higher and wasn't sure I'd register a loss this week. But I did!

This happened last week too. A higher weight on Wednesday morning made me kick my butt into gear, and have really good days Wed/Thurs, enough to make a change by Friday weigh-in. 

I'd actually had a good weekend, maintaining my 149 number for a few days, despite the weekend. I actually kept calories in check (under 2000) Friday and Saturday!

Sunday, the family expects a homemade treat.  I made cookie-press cookies (pictured here).  It's SO easy to eat a lot of them without realizing it. They aren't too sweet, yet they keep you coming back for more. Most were gone by Monday, but I'd stuck a few in the freezer. I actually prefer them frozen to fresh. I kept nibbling the next couple days until they were gone. While I tracked calories, and thought I kept intake under burn (no deficit though), had high exercise (even with the Monday/MLK holiday) that is when the weight went up. The cookie effect ... least with our usual Sunday treat of homemade oreos, I limit myself to one or two as they are quite rich. The initial caloric intake is higher, but there are never leftovers to tempt me afterward.

I kept the sugar under control the past two days (not saying I didn't have any, but a lot less than the usual) and even had THREE servings of fruit yesterday. I struggle to get my fruit/veggie quota in so that's rare for me. I upped my exercise and was happy to see some reflection in the scale.

In fact ... I saw a new number on my MFP ticker!

Number crunch time ... 149.1, down .8 since last week, but my average actually dropped over a pound (from 151.93 to 150.76).  My weekly deficit was 4439 (so I exceeded my 3500 goal). My average intake was 1993 (under 2000, yea!) and while I had several 3000+ days, I didn't quite get my burn average up. It was 2838. You can see more detail in my Day to Day Doings if desired. I felt it was a good week. Even though my dryer broke. Doing laundry is no fun, but not being ABLE to do laundry is even worse!

Check in with the Follow Through Friday gals and recap your week!
Aubrey Leigh//Candra//Jodi//Mel//Val//Cait//Jacquelyn//Jennifer

Also linking up with Fitness Friday at Fitness, Health and Happiness.

I've been gathering a lot of links for my Saturday Spotlight.
Hope to see you again tomorrow.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Revising My Records

Before (left) and After (right)

There has been a lot about CHANGE on my blog recently ... Resolutions, Change, Trying New Things. Perhaps it's a "January" thing, a fresh new year makes people want a fresh new approach.  As I was shuffling through all the papers on my desk ... I decided I needed a bit of a new approach to my record keeping. A while back, I did a post (Numbers) showcasing the little slips of paper I write down the stats from each workout on before I transfer the data to my computer. I've been doing this for years. It works, but it's a bit messy, lots of little papers pile up. To my frustration, they would go missing here and there.

So, a MONUMENTAL change (ok, it's minor) ... I decided to switch from my mini 3" x 5" spiral notepad to a larger 6" x 9" spiral notepad.  I've been doing it for a little over a week now (I wish I had thought to start it Jan1 or Jan 6, just the OCD in me) and I'm liking it. Being bigger, I've got a little more room - previously, I was quite cramped trying to write everything down on uber-exercise days. I used to throw away my little pieces of paper (eventually, after a pile had stacked up *Ü*) but I actually LIKE keeping everything, as long as it's organized and together. 

One disadvantage to the new system is I have to cart the notebook up and down the stairs. The workouts take place downstairs in J&G's Gym, where as the data entry portion (my excel file, my Day to Day Doings entries) take place upstairs at my desk. I used to just tear off the top sheet, but now I bring up the entire notebook at the end of the day. I then have to remember to take it back downstairs in the morning. I often forget. Sometimes I want to work on my computer and need my numbers during the day, so I have to run down and grab the notebook ... 

My Fitbit tracks stairs ... I've noticed I've had a noted increase in my stairs this past week.
That's not a bad thing *Ü*

Well, off to add a little to my notebook ...

Linking up with 
What are YOU thinking about this fine Thursday?

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Do A Little Good

What if you could give back, just by working out? I mean, I'm going to work out anyway ... if my exertion and sweat can serve more than myself, that would be great!  I've found that there are many different programs that will give back based on your activity. 

You know I'm a Fitbit fan ... one of the things I've really liked about the Fitbit, is that it is has been around long enough and is well-respected enough in the fitness community, that it links/syncs with so many programs. It makes it SO easy to link up with sites that will take my stats and credit different charities for my steps. 

One program I heard about recently is WeightlessProject.Org - I simply linked my Fitbit to it and I've already "earned" almost $45 to feed the hungry. Currently, it looks like this program ONLY links with Fitbit or Jawbone Up at present. But if you have either of those, why not link up and help out a little? 

I already posted about Earndit in my Reaping the Rewards post. I've never found any "rewards" I wanted for myself on this site, but they usually have a few charity options. Again, I just linked my Fitbit with the site and so my points pile up until I remember to go in and redeem them toward my charity of choice.  

If you do not have a Fitbit, 
Earndit does have MANY apps that it will accept information from. 
Check them out.

Everymove is another reward site. I have found a few rewards I've selfishly wanted to earn to keep for me, but they are few and far between. Most of the time, my points are going toward a $5 donation to the "Make a Wish Foundation".  I've earned that eight times so far ... Everymove also links up with MANY different apps. I'm sure you probably use at least one of them!

I know there are other apps out there as well. I have the Charity Miles app, I WISH it linked to Fitbit. It requires me to start/stop my iphone with my workouts ... I never remember to do that, dang it! But giving back a little ... it gives me a little extra reason to workout out. I'll call that an NSV!

Do you participate in any of these programs? 
Any others I don't have listed here?

As I started my post with ... I'm going to link up with Weigh-In Wednesday *Ü* (totally on topic, right?)  Losing weight and having a healthier life is YOUR reward. Think about giving a little back while you work at it!  For MY actual weigh-in, check back on Friday. Right now it's not looking good for a loss this week, but I've been in this position before and still made it, so who knows? The cookies I made on Sunday and have been nibbling on each day are now gone, so that will help me control my calories a bit better today and tomorrow!

*** Out of the U.S. peeps ... I keep forgetting that some of these programs (Everymove for one I believe) are limited to US residents. I believe Earndit is not, and I don't believe I saw any restrictions on  Comment if you have anything to add!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Flu Facts

Do you ever want to post something to your blog just so you KNOW where it is for future reference? There's been so much sickness going around, I thought I might want a copy of this chart on hand just so at least we might know what we are dealing with.

My sickness last month I think was the seasonal flu. I never went into the doctor, as I just don't know that they can do anything (I guess if you get in early enough, you could get a Tamiflu prescription. We got some one year when my little one was sick and it cost over $100 and I'm not even sure it was effective). But the last thing I felt like doing was going out and sitting in a doctor's office. You can see I survived.

I was still on "mommy duty" during my sickness. Driving carpools, making lunches ... I'm pretty sure I sneezed all over everything. I really tried to keep my hands washed and everything as disinfected as possible. I was very happy that no one else in the family got sick.

But Hubby HAS gotten sick now. His is quite different than my sickness. It came on so quickly. Extreme fever and chills. His fever hit 105º last Wednesday. Reading up online afterwards apparently I should have rushed him to the ER, but we did get the fever down with medication and cool cloths. I kept him on a strict medication schedule after that (even setting my alarm for a 3am wake up to make sure he got his next dose on time). I'm thinking his is the H1N1 ... I think he's over the worst of it. The fever has dissipated, but congestion has moved in. I'm still keeping an eye on him!

I'm not opposed to the flu shot, I just generally don't go out of my way to get one. If I happen to have a trip to the doctor, I'll get one. I haven't noticed any bad reactions ... or any real flu prevention.  I remember eight years ago, I had just had my last baby. The entire family then came down with the flu.  The baby was just seven days old. I took him to the instacare, and they immediately referred us downtown to Primary Children's hospital. I was so worried, as the rest of us had such a bad cough, I couldn't imagine his little body going through that. Although we were admitted and had to stay in the hospital for a few days, the baby never really got it bad (thank heavens). I probably got more rest there in the hospital with the baby than I would have at home with the other four kids (poor Daddy!) I HAD received a flu shot that year, as had both sets of grandparents and our pediatrician ... ALL of them were sick with the flu at this time as well!

I REALLY hope this is it for our family and the flu for a while. Although last year, my baby (he was then seven) got the flu in December. He got it again in February (as did I and two of the other boys). As bad as my recent bout was (hubby said he'd never seen me so sick) I do think the one last February was worse ... that sore throat was excruciating!

Sharing the handy dandy chart of symptoms
as well as prevention recommendations for today's 
  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu.
  • If you are sick with flu-like illness, stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. (Your fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.)
  • While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
How do you all feel about the flu shot?
Do you go to the doctor, or simply wait it out?

Monday, January 20, 2014

I Hope You Dance

Have you ever played the game "I have never ..."?  There are a few different versions of the game, but the gist is, you try to think of something you have never done, that others in the group HAVE done. Let me tell you, I could ALWAYS win at this game.  I could win this game with food items alone. "I have never eaten pizza, hamburger, hotdogs, tacos, apple pie. I have never had a beer, wine or even a Coke."  I have plenty of non-food never issues too.  When it comes to trying things ... that's NOT a strong suit for me. I've got some anxiety issues, and they can definitely come into play when "new" things come up.

So at church last Sunday, I noticed in the program a little notice that there was going to be a Zumba class being held. Now ... I have never, ever taken a class before. Not any type of class. I'm a solo exerciser. I've never really tried Zumba ... well, I did get a DVD out of the library and attempted that. I gave up pretty quick. I am not a dancer. Back in my high school and college days, I was heavily involved in musical theater and different singing groups, and that fact that I was NOT a dancer was pretty obvious. 

But the class was free. I was free ... in fact the timing was perfect. 8:30 on a Tuesday morning. That lined up perfectly for me to go to the church straight after dropping off the elementary kids at school, but before my volunteer shift there later in the day. But did I dare?

I posted on a couple of my social sites (MFP and Facebook) trying to get a bit of feedback (does a non-dancer dare try Zumba type of question). My MFP friends came back with tons of positive support, encouraging me to go ahead and give it a try (the responses went on for a while! My screen grab could only get the first few). I really appreciated all the kind words. 

I also posted in one of my fitness groups on Facebook ... there I was surprised at how many of the gals said they hadn't tried Zumba either (but again encouraged me to give it a go). I really thought I was the last person alive to give a Zumba class a try.

Tuesday morning rolled around. I knew I had to make the decision. I went ahead and put on my sneakers. I put on my heart rate monitor. I grabbed a bottle of water and I dropped the little boys off at school. It was 8:25. 

The church was on my way home. I pulled into the parking lot and there were quite a few cars there. I wasn't sure if I hoped there would be people from my neighborhood that I knew, or if it would actually be easier to attempt if everyone was simply strangers.  I should have glanced down at my HRM before the class started, because I'm pretty sure my heart was already pounding pretty fast!

I completed the class.  Although there were times I started to sweat a bit, it wasn't that much of a workout. I was pretty disappointed (but not surprised) by the calorie burns reflected on the Fitbit and my HRM.

Will I go again? I'm not sure. But nevertheless, I'm glad I DID go. I'm proud that I overcame my anxiety and attended a class, even if it didn't turn out as good as I'd hoped. 

Do YOU Zumba? 
Does social exercising encourage or intimidate you?
What new things do you want to try?

It's Martin Luther King Jr. Day ... which means the kids are out of school. The routine will be a bit off today. I had a decent weekend, kept calories in check, but weight is still up a bit this morning. Over 150 :(.

I need to get motivated again! Monday linkups with 
and of course ...

Link up with Motivational Monday.
Share your story. Anything that motivates you or others!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Saturday Spotlight #11

Welcome to my Saturday Spotlight
Here's a few of the interesting articles I read this week ...

  • Deciphering Labels for Hidden Food Allergens: With Celiacs running in my family, I have started examining food labels more closely when preparing something for my brother, sister or dad. This had a lot of good information.  
  • Can Winter Really Make You Sick? The Truth About Seasonal Affective Disorder: I had such a bad winter last year, I wondered a bit about "SAD". My doctor checked my vitamin D levels at my annual exam and said we'd keep an eye on it. So far so good this year. 
  • Do You Know Your Active Metabolic Rate: AMR ... is this the same as TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure)?
  • Six Ways To Get Motivated and Stay That Way: I thought this blog post had some good ideas.
  • The Grossness of Gum: I must admit, I'm a gum chewer though. It helps keep my mouth occupied. 
  • Addicted to TV: Why are some shows so addictive? I actually LOVE shows that hook me, that keep me wanting to come back! I'm pretty much always watching them while I work out, so something that makes me want to come back? That might just get me to the gym more. Although I've found that some shows, I'd prefer just to wait and watch the episodes back to back - no commercial breaks or waiting a week (months or season) in between. I've got a few I keep current with, others I'm interested in but am waiting until they are available on Netflix, Amazon Prime or DVD. I keep a list of what I'm watching if you were interested.
Speaking of television shows, I've been catching up on Modern Family. Do you watch it? I got season 1 for Christmas and now the kids are hooked, so I figured I'd better get caught up before they started watching ones I hadn't seen yet (that is a major pet peeve of mine! I really dislike catching a glimpse of a show I haven't seen, but that I intend to watch).  I have to say, I got quite a kick out of the "Phil vs the Elliptical" theme in the Christmas episode. I was watching while on MY elliptical. (I'm hoping it shows below, if not, I've included the link) ... SO funny!

If that didn't give you a laugh, 
check out these post-it notes from a stay-at home dad to his wife. 

That's it for this week. Check out the previous Saturday Spotlights for more of my links, and links to other bloggers who do posts similar to this. If you do a similar post (highlighting great articles or blog posts), feel free to post your link in the comments section. Have a good weekend!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Weekly Weigh-In (#27)

Again, I wasn't sure I was going to make a loss this week ... I bumped up higher after the "wicked weekend" then worked to change that trend and barely squeaked in a loss as I stepped on the scale this morning. But under 150! 149.9 ... down .2 from last weigh-in. I know 150 and 149.9 are only .1 apart, but it's a huge difference in my eyes. Now to make that middle number stay a 4 instead of a 5. My average weight (151.93) is up just a little from last week.  My total deficit was 2620 ... I was aiming for 3500 (about 500 per day) and hoping that would equal a one pound loss. I didn't quite get there this week. Still eating too much, and eating to much of the wrong (but yummy) things. 

Reflecting on the week ... I actually kept things under control on Friday, and that even included a date out to eat with hubby. I LOVE the fish and chips and Red Robin. Did you know you can request the "kids" fish, which is only two pieces, rather than the standard four? The calories and price are cut in half. I CAN eat four pieces ... but I can quash my craving with two. I'll admit I ate some cheese sticks too. Love those. I knew we were going out to eat and I "banked" my calories earlier in the day. Do you ever try that?

Saturday I had some wins ... Daddy and four of the boys went out to breakfast at Kneaders, but #4 didn't want to go, so I stayed home with him and jumped on the elliptical rather than indulging in decadent french toast. Of course then I blew it by eating a couple bowls of apple jacks. Fail. Win at the first basketball game of the day ... I jogged the track during the practice portion and when my boy was sitting out during the game (I did run down the stairs and grab some video highlights while he was in). Got in 2.5 miles instead of just sitting and watching. And I did NOT stop for donuts on the way home, even though we drove right past the donut place. It would have been so easy to stop and grab a dozen ... and then eat a couple of them.

I was doing just fine on Saturday until I came home from the fourth and final game and Daddy had chick-fil-a waiting. The chicken nuggets were yummy, but combined with some earlier snacking, pushed me over my calories for the day.  Sunday ... our traditional big breakfast and evening treat of homemade oreos showed up on the scale Monday morning.

I'm usually pretty controlled Mon-Thurs ... this week, Tuesday was a bit of a challenge. While I did manage to stay under (just barely) I didn't get my 500 deficit that day. We had my folks over for dinner and games ... and a treat of course. I feel like a bad hostess if I don't provide a yummy treat (I even did a gluten-free version for my dad).  I did manage to keep calories in control Wed/Thurs.

I've had a bit of a cold this week ... nothing too bad;  a runny nose, a tickle in the back of my throat. Very happy it didn't progress into anything worse or affect my exercise in any way. Hubby on the other hand was not so lucky. He came home from work early on Tuesday and by the evening he was miserable with fever and chills. He attempted to go to work on Wednesday but soon figured out that wasn't going to happen. He was sleeping fitfully all afternoon, and didn't take his next dose of ibuprofen as scheduled. I took his temperature when he woke and he was 105°! Yikes! With some cool cloths and another dose, we did get his fever down and managed to keep it under control.  He's doing better today.

I've been really consistent with my exercise this week, hitting my goals and checking off my "streaks" calendar. Time to wrap up this post and get back down to the gym ... I need to get in some more cardio, and it's also weights day! I've done 30DS earlier this week, but I'm ready for my weights workout.

Linking up with Jennifer's Follow Through Friday ... it goes with my weekly post perfectly.

Aubrey Leigh at ALG Uninterupted
Jacquelyn at JustJacq

Also linking-up with Weigh-In Wednesday (even though it's Friday), and of course with my original Fitness Friday linkup . I've been browsing the blogs and online articles and will be posting my Saturday Spotlight tomorrow. Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

My Olympic Oval Experience

It's Throwback Thursday! Here's a picture from back in 2008. I think this was when both hubby and I were doing great keeping active and keeping the weight off. We're at Utah's Olympic Oval for a little family ice skating. The three older boys were naturals ... the two youngest, not so much. They were NOT happy. I mean there were kids their age just zipping by on the ice, but not my two little ones. We had such a good time (well, five of us anyway), that we decided to invest in a family pass. It really wasn't much of an investment actually. For just $99, we could get into the oval for an entire year of free skating (including skate rental). If we just went a couple of times, we'd get our money's worth. The two little guys never went back, but I went several times with the older boys, and a couple times by myself just to get an ice skating work-out in. 

In addition to skating, our membership also gave us access to the track around the oval. Unlike the skating, which had limited hours, the jogging track was usually open all day (from 5:30 to 10:00). If you are a bit wimpy, like me, it's a great alternative to running outdoors. Always a comfortable, cool 65° that was appealing in both winter and summer.

I'm not a big runner, but I did get several trips in. Often there would be Olympic athletes training on the ice. It was hard NOT to get a bit of an adrenaline rush, feeding off their energy. Once, as I was walking back to my car, I crossed paths with Apolo Anton Ohno. He nodded and said hi as he walked by. Pretty cool!

Since then, we've debated whether or not to get another pass. The price has increased slightly, but it's still a good deal. I know the older boys would like getting some skating in, and I enjoy it too. I'm still not sure the little ones would even want to try though. We haven't gotten around to doing it, but it's always there in the back of my mind.

I've just been catching up on the latest episode of The Biggest Loser. It was fun to see the contestants come to Utah and work out in a place where I've been myself.  As the 2014 Olympics are getting so close, there have been some articles in the local paper about how Utah is the only location to have all it's Olympic venues open to the public and still in use. I haven't toured the venues up in Park City, but the Olympic Oval is only about 15 minutes from our home. 

Want to see what's going on at the Oval right now? 
They keep a live web cam running!

Do you ever ice skate?
Are you going to watch some of the upcoming Winter Olympics?

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Winter Weather

Baby it's cold out there! The winter weather has been in the news quite a bit lately, as colder than normal temperatures have hit much of the US. Here in Utah ... the weather really hasn't been anything out of the ordinary (unlike last year when we got hit with an ice storm that shut down the city - you can read more about that and see some great videos that went viral on my family blog post Ice Is Not Nice, ah the memories!). My teens (#2 and #3) want to wear SHORTS to school! Crazy kids. They are inside for the day, but still. I did manage to make the munchkins wear pants, and even take a jacket and gloves. Unless the temperature is 23° or under, it's an outside day and they still have recess. 

The weather has actually "warmed" up a bit ... the sun is out, the snow is melting and I'm seeing quite a few joggers taking advantage and getting outdoors. Me? I'm an indoor exerciser. So winter weather doesn't really affect me much. My gym is simply down the stairs, so I don't even have to venture out on the streets to get my workouts in. It's always 58°-64° in my home gym. A little chilly in the winter as I start my workout, but I'm usually ready for my fan 10 minutes in. If I'm feeling cold, I'll go jump on the elliptical for twenty minutes, and that will warm me right up. 

A few days ago, some of the snowflakes falling were HUGEmongous! 

This picture doesn't quite do it justice, 
but I think you can see the size of some of those "flakes" 
(you really can't call those flakes!).

How is the weather in YOUR next of the woods?
Does Winter Weather impact your exercise routine?

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