Progress is Progress

This weekend was a blur. I weighed in on Saturday and I knew that I wasn’t down much in pounds, but I was disappointed to see the number on the scale that day. I started obsessing about getting my personalized report to see how much fat loss and muscle gain I’d experienced. GAINS! lol.

That board is always there, but this was special for Saturday’s event at the gym.

I considered skipping my Saturday cheat meal because I couldn’t land on one meal or cuisine in which I wanted to eat. I accidentally missed lunch by being busy and wound up eating a little bag of pistachios from a vending machine because it was the only ‘natural’ thing in there. I wanted to eat dinner somewhere that had draft beer. When my husband and I have gotten away for a meal together, we wound up at a local place called Flingers that had craft pizza and craft beer. I actually picked another local place before I changed my mind in the car to go to the pizza joint. No regrets there. My kids loved their meal and my husband and I had a bbq chicken pizza that was delicious. My beer tasted incredible. I ordered a skillet cookie and shared it, of course. I required some antacid later on, but I wasn’t sickly full. I didn’t binge on the food. I stopped when I was full and I was mindful about my bites.

I’m really digging the New England IPAs

Sunday, we went to church early for a meeting and breakfast where everything looked so tasty, but I only grabbed a small bite of their breakfast pizza and a large portion of fruit. My kids ate the pastries and donuts. The day was busy again and I simply didn’t feel like eating my lunch. My house was a zoo that day with kids coming in and out and I cleaned the floors before heading back to church for my evening volunteering.

My results came in after dinner Sunday night. I was down 3 pounds, gained 1 pound of muscle and lost 1% fat over the first two weeks of the program. While I know I should have been proud of myself, I felt like my hard work should have resulted in more. What’s up with that? “MORE!” There is always room for it.

And when you ask them, “How much should we give?”
Ooh, they only answer “More! More! More!”

Fortunate Son by Creedence Clearwater Revival

Progress is progress and not being happy that I’ve made some in the right direction is nonsense. I still have two weeks to go and the main idea is to get fit and stay that way instead of starting over and over. Monday at the gym, the coaches were surprised that I wasn’t more pleased with my results and reminded me that I’m putting in the hard work and doing it the right way. I left the gym energized and went to tackle the rest of my day with a little more positivity than I’d started it.

I have a physical therapy evaluation today. This time a women’s health PT. Fortunately, I am not experiencing pelvic prolapse again. My ob/gyn has noticed some ligament issues that have causes me a lot of lower abdominal and back pain that have been annoying to say the least. My foot pain that was in the metatarsal region has nagged off and on lately and I’ve been trying to do all the exercises from that therapy so I don’t have to go back to the podiatrist. I’m not even old yet and I can’t stay away from the doctor for aches and pains.

Thanks for reading! I’ve felt higher energy levels since starting to eat better and exercise more regularly. My depression isn’t gone and obviously had to rear its ugly head on my weigh in results. It helps that I can have outdoor time without a coat lately. I’ve been running less than 10 miles a week, but it’ll pick up when the weather is consistently warm. Today, I ran with Aurora for 3 miles and she was nuts. I think she really had fun and we’re slowly learning how to use the running leash. She looked tired for the picture, but after some water and ice cubes, she bolted around the house like a herd of cattle were coming through.

Mid-week Writing

I have so much floating around in my head today. It could be that I had a little extra caffeine this morning. It could also be that I am reaping the benefits of no binge eating along with exercise.

This week, I planned workouts on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Putting it on my phone calendar like an appointment has helped my accountability. I ran on Tuesday to my polling place about a half of a mile away, and ran around the block to get home instead of going straight into my subdivision. That made it a mostly uphill run, but I felt good despite being slower than what I’m used to running.

I recorded it in two runs on Garmin. This is one.

My nutrition changes started to get into my head Tuesday around lunch. Wednesday, I tossed out my pre made meal instead of eating it. To be fair, it had been frozen and thawed which affected the flavor. I decided to mix things up from my meal plan, put hummus into tuna, and eat it with celery and carrots. I sprinkled on some hot sauce and ate it all. I was concerned about tuna but I was pleasantly surprised.

I have noticed that eating every few hours has curbed my binge urges. I’ve had some major bouts with anxiety, but my depression seems to be under control. My body insecurity is high. I have a mirror and I don’t like what I see there. I know results take time, so I’m being patient with myself. I am ashamed that I let my fat get this out of control. I have faith that this is the last time I need to work so hard just to get healthy and that I’ll be good at maintaining my health.

This week, instead of making myself all individual meals, my dinners are planned for the family. Some parts of it are separate for myself, but it feels less like I’m having something entirely different than they are. That has also improved my outlook on eating well. I’m even going to try making a turkey and quinoa meatloaf.

Post after workout shower selfie.

I’m hoping for good numbers Saturday. I hope it gives me an idea of how well the changes are working.

Thanks for reading! Have a great day! It would appear Spring is trying to make an entrance. I sure hope so.

Shred Start

I attended Be Strong gym as planned last Saturday and was more confident with what to expect from my Spring Shred program. I wound up earning a t-shirt with the gym logo on it by being really enthusiastic. We had a presentation, workout, and weigh in.

Sunday, I had a nutrition plan on my phone and I hit the grocery store. I then spent 3 hours prepping 21 meals. I then realized that because I was going to be in St. Louis for the coming week, I would have to transport all of these meals and store them at my in laws’ house. Thankfully, they had space in their fridge and freezer. I brought my reusable ice packs and had them frozen by Friday when we headed back.

Chicken with cajun seasoning, brown rice, and raw broccoli

I attended a workout on Monday at the gym at 6am since we weren’t leaving until later in the morning for our Spring Break trip. I kept thinking about how I don’t like to wake up early while I was driving to the gym. On the way home, I realized it really wasn’t that bad to get up for the workout. I slept for the majority of the ride to St. Louis, though. My husband and I went to a hockey game and I had a little of his beer, but otherwise stuck to my nutrition.

Tuesday, we spent most of the day at the City Museum crawling through things and running around with the kids. I brought snacks along with me and ate them as I felt hungry. It was hard to fit in lunch and dinner toward the end of the day because I had plans with my bestie, Liz at the movies. We saw Captain Marvel. I can normally take down quite a bit of popcorn by myself, but I brought myself almonds, a protein shake, and a water bottle. Captain Marvel was awesome and I already want to see it again. When they brought my free small popcorn, I only nibbled less than a handful and tossed the rest after the movie. Not bad for someone who normally mindlessly binge eats popcorn.

Wednesday, we went to the St. Louis Zoo and I somehow missed seeing Justin Timberlake who was in town for a Thursday night show. I did get to see this penguin head scratch though:

Totally cute head scratch

My husband’s family got together for a bbq that night. I improvised my meal based on the plan and made an entire plate full of salad with chicken and artichoke hearts. I had one spoonful of the spinach and of the potato casserole, which were delicious. I didn’t over eat anything and that’s a big deal for me.

Most of the week, I was adjusting to my new eating plan while using tips from The Binge Code to help with the mental aspect of my healthy eating. I felt more confident having gotten through that book and then having guidance on what to eat when I’m not under eating and then overeating.

I made some adjustments based on last week. This week, I’m not meal prepping until Tuesday. My Sundays are usually pretty full and it was stressful to try to complete in the midst of the busy day. I ordered uniform containers to help with storage. I have meals prepared to get me through Tuesday. I’m going to prep dinners for the family instead of making myself individual dinners. I’ll just sub things in for myself on some of the side dishes. These are small adjustments I feel will help with this part of my journey. I really like what I’m eating, but I want to make sure it is something I don’t think is tedious.

Thanks for reading! I love feedback! I’ll be trying to check in weekly during the shred. My first follow up weigh in will be Saturday. I will try to nail down some numbers to share. This week, I was really excited to share my eating with you.

Strike ending

I’ve referred to my recent disinterest in fitness as a strike. Nothing specific happened to make me decide not to resume running after being sick. I simply didn’t want to. It was odd that I also didn’t resume cross training workouts like I normally do when I’m on running hiatus.

I’ve been reading The Binge Code by Alison Kerr. I purchased the book while trying to find something to help with my problem. It was self published and had some minor grammatical errors that most people wouldn’t notice. What it did for me, I couldn’t have imagined. I’ve been through countless weight loss programs where they said they’d change my relationship and my mind about food. Nothing could change me long term even though I wanted it so badly. This book has touched on the problems that I had all along.

Ali touches on techniques to deal with urges as a temporary approach while putting the rest of the book into practice. She outlines traps that we experience in our attempts to stop binge eating. One of my biggest problems had been overly strict food rules that lead to temptation and then to binge eating. She offers stories and real advice on the problems faced.

I’ve not been asked to endorse her. I got encouraging emails and handy printouts to use with the book. I was given access to guided meditations. I had a better idea of how to heal this problem and I have already noticed a difference in my hunger and satiety cues. Ali mentions that it could be six weeks or more before physical results are seen, so the expectation has been realistic from the start.

I’m happier when I’m involved in fitness. That isn’t part of the book. I’ve given myself accountability by joining a 28 day challenge at a local gym. Weigh in and first workout are Saturday. Completion day is April 20th. I hope to have updates for you and I hope to have restored fitness into my life and subtracted binge eating. I also hope to at least be back in 5k running shape. The owner of the gym assured me that this will be the end of my strike.

The first challenge is showing up for my weigh in. The next is spring break and exercising control during an often hectic week of activities for kids who have a bit of cabin fever from this winter. I am better prepared to deal with it.

The new business selling Keep Collective jewelry has been slow, but the people in my groups for the business are highly positive and supportive. When I set out to do it, I said I would give it a year. Maybe the warm weather will see more opportunities to earn. (FB: KeepWithJennDesi )

Thanks for reading! I hope you are excited about the arrival of Spring. I hope that you can find some success in things you’re looking to add or remove in your life. Don’t forget to be nice to yourself every single day.

Now, I’m going to figure out how to get my office chair to stop squeaking every time I shift my weight. Even if that means some spray lubricant. It’s unnerving and I’m never sitting still.

Load Spring, Please

Raise your hand if you are done with cold weather and precipitation that’s frozen. Now put it down before anyone else sees you. My poor blue minivan has a white salt crust on it that is probably eating the undercarriage to rust. (I’m a poet. Yay.)

Poor van…

I have had a sore throat for over a week. I’ve been to the “doc in a box” and to the general practitioner. It isn’t the flu and it isn’t strep, so there isn’t much I can do other than wait it out. What a bunch of crap. I’m assuming if there were a little humidity, this wouldn’t be an issue.

I know most people say that above the neck, you can still work out, but heavy breathing really aggravates the freshly swallowed glass sensation and I just don’t want to feel it. That’s not my primary reason. I haven’t been working out because I don’t want to make time to do it. I want to figure out this direct sales job, handle my body issues, and be the best mom and wife in the whole wide world while being the most awesome girl boss ever.

I have a problem that is with what I put into my mouth more than how I move my body. I can eat a box of cookies by lunchtime and not be hungry for lunch or dinner later in the day. Or I can eat 3 square meals and then get into the cabinet and whip something up that’s bad for me in just a few minutes. I’m an amazing cook and pretty good baker. I’ll totally brag on that.

I’m finally doing something about the problem at hand. The hard part was naming the problem. Binge eating. I have great cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure every year at my checkup. Except I’m obese. Yeah, I’m not overweight. I’m obese.

I know how to eat healthy. I enjoy an array of fresh and unprocessed foods. Dieting, I feel deprived. I go to a store, drive thru, or find a recipe to make something at home. I get stressed out and feel like I “need” something and no matter how much I eat, I feel more and more hungry. I know all the tricks: drink water, use fiber, and eat things with a low glycemic index. None of that matters when I’m on a binge and I feel like shit about myself, so I just feed the monster. Then, my brain starts to ignore the message that I’m full.

I have been on some form of a diet all of the time since I was around 8 years old. I never had a severe problem with disordered eating, so it wasn’t a real problem. I had a negative body image for most of my life. One time, I was trying clothes on and casually said I could stand to lose a few pounds upon trying one of her pants on. A relative replied to me, “More like 15-20 pounds.” I realize that comment said more about her than me. Now I do. I was in my 20’s and I hadn’t transitioned to grown up sizes, yet. I wasn’t eating more than a meal a day unless there was an occasion. I smoked cigarettes and I would work out in front of my TV after my daughter went to bed. I was 150 pounds and I wanted to be 135 on my 5′ 7″ frame.

Like I said, finding the name for what was wrong with me was difficult. I’ve been as much as 215 lbs and as little as 160 over the past 10 years. I’m an inch shorter than I was. My weight fluctuates. My stress levels fluctuate. I searched deeper into what I was doing and why I had so much trouble with willpower sometimes vs others. I found “binge eating” was the name of what I’d been doing and it wasn’t necessarily about willpower.

I got a book about it and I’m still not 100% immersed in recovery. I put the book in my purse the other day, but not until after I placed paper over the cover of the book so others around me couldn’t see what I was reading. It is a source of shame that’s even deeper than the way I feel about my outward appearance.

The most important change is that I’m not dieting anymore. I base some of my worst eating habits off of the thought that “I’ll be fat whether I eat the doughnut or the veggie omelette.” I’ve always been fat, in my opinion. That’s got to stop. My goals for this year include a more positive opinion of self no matter the size and I’m trying to get there.

I’ll let you know how I feel when I finish the book. The author directly says it could be six weeks or more before I’ll see results, but that really is a small time period compared to spending the next years of my life not eating because I hate my body, but because I understand what it needs.

Have you ever sat and thought about how words from you or others have affected your sense of self? I implore you, on International Women’s Day, to tell a woman something you like about her that isn’t about her physical appearance. Don’t forget to reflect on yourself, though. Think about what you really like about you and don’t forget to appreciate it and embrace it.

Thanks for reading! I’m always up for comments or questions. If you want to know more about my jewelry selling, my facebook page is @KeepWithJennDesi. I actually have been enjoying it so far.

Regrets? A few.

This morning I was thinking that with each passing year, I’m becoming the type of person who does things my way. My music taste is eclectic at best and probably sometimes dated, but Sinatra can sure make you feel the song. Of course, I burst into song because I’m a living musical. Not really, but in my head, I totally sang in key and had all the right choreography to make it look good.

In those morning moments today when I was awake, but lying in bed thinking too much, I started to think of the positive spin on my regrets. I loved and trusted too much for people who didn’t deserve it. Maybe I was the only person to give them that warmth, though. I assumed people were my friends who weren’t. Giving them friendship didn’t take anything away from me.

The biggest thing that stands out to me is that when I was outwardly brave and bold, I always caved in to other people and their expectations. I was easily manipulated into being everything to everyone instead of me for me. I wanted to be loved and liked more than I wanted to be respected. I even did it for my daughter.

I realized it the other day when my daughter said she’s a product of her environment and therefore not responsible for the consequences or results of her own choices. The person I was when she was young would have believed that. I would have felt guilty for all the wrong reasons. I feel guilty now, but not the way that would seem satisfying to the person trying to apply that emotion to me. I feel bad that I did too much and gave in too much for my own insecurities. No, I don’t think my oldest is permanently damaged from this. I just think that it contributes to the issues at hand that we are having with responsibility and respect. I think that the stronger person I am now is to thank for this realization that would have destroyed my former ego and will help her and my other kids in the long run.

Running has helped me develop some of the skills I needed to be physically and mentally strong. Not only has it helped me to conquer the difficult times, but it has forged friendships and inspired people to join me. I didn’t go into running a half marathon thinking I had an issue with mental fortitude, but I came out of it realizing it had been there.

The tough times over the last few years nearly broke me. Some parts were broken, but I found a strength I never knew. My husband and I have never been closer. We’ve used the pieces that were breaking and built something so much stronger together and for that I am grateful.

I want to say that in the tough times, it is difficult to pull away and refocus. I get it. I don’t think you should just ignore it when your world is crumbling down. What I want you to know is that you grow from being buried. The pieces that break away aren’t always going to fit back on. Let yourself become the person your trials are making you. Some people won’t like it. Especially the people who benefitted from the weakness. Do it anyway.

I haven’t run lately. I’m still working on the binge eating. I’ve taken big steps toward recovery. This month wasn’t great for my direct sales gig. I made 2 sales and one of them was to myself. I had my hair cut twice last week because I hated the first cut. The second was better, but not what I’d expected or wanted when I set out to get it done. I bought a wave iron to style away the plainness of the cut. I was really feeling down on myself. This morning, something clicked. I have been trying and sometimes failing instead of failing to try. I did it my way and I’m proud of that.

I hope this came off as positive. I feel well today with the sun shining despite the bitter cold and roaring winds. I’ll share my hair saga:

Complain or Endure

I want to complain. I totally want to spend an entire blog post ranting.
I have sold nothing this month and it’s only my 2nd month trying to make myself the girl boss I’ve dreamed of being. It is not for lack of trying. I dropped a wooden table leg on my foot and my toes and foot are black and blue. Not running just in case, but also not running because I’ve had enough of the cold and slippery. I realized I’m probably food addicted because my weight swings 30 lbs up and down over time and I’m on the “high” end of that right now. I’m buying a book to try to get my mind right on food.

That’s really all the rant. Shoot, other stuff is pretty good.

I finally caught some of tidy madness and I completely emptied my walk in closet. I looked at each item and I decided what to keep and what to toss (and what could still be donated). My husband and I put in some work and completely changed the shelves and bars to make the space more efficient. It is amazing! Finally, after almost 10 years of arguing every time we had a project, we did it with no bickering.

I enjoy being a Keep designer and the things we share with each other in the online groups. I like designing stuff for myself and other people. I like trying to come up with things and the idea that I’m going to be the girl boss that I want to be. I also get a pretty good deal on the stuff, so I can have a huge variety for myself.

The food thing is annoying. I am constantly hungry and I try really hard not to eat stuff that isn’t nourishing. I am not good at it. I’ll let you all know if reading a book helps or not. I’m not ready for Whole 30 or anything because my eating is disordered and restrictive dieting is the first step to causing a binge. I know my ways well.

Today is full of Valentine parties at school and little things that need to be done, but I’m happy. I’m content. Things aren’t all going my way, but my attitude about it isn’t affecting how I live. That’s what I’m thinking about.

I’m not always on positive when things aren’t going my way. In fact, sometimes, I’m at “This is the end of the world,” instead. Accepting that those thing suck actually helps more than trying to focus on the positive and guilt myself into feeling better. Embrace the suck and try to make it through to the other side.

I hope you have a Happy Valentine’s Day if you celebrate. Otherwise, I hope you are reaching your goals and still trying.

I don’t wanna

My last post was so darn optimistic. I didn’t realize that I would get to the point where I can’t convince myself that working out is a good idea. I get my stretching and my foam rolling in, but anything else seems like too much. Since the start of the year, and I mean the actual run I had on New Year’s Day, I have been dealing with some sort of snot. When I try to push through feeling icky, it shows me that I need to relax.

I reluctantly took this entire week off from cardio. Instead, I did some of my physical therapy exercises for my ankles and feet along with using the foam roller on my achy muscles. I still don’t feel stellar, but I guess there’s progress. I can’t wait for a day where I can enjoy an outdoor run without the fear of injury. This weather has not been ideal for someone who doesn’t want to have any injuries and hates treadmills.

I’m still trying to come up with the best plan for easing into running so I’m not risking injury, but still working back up to 10k and half marathon shape.

I’m also selling Keep Collective jewelry. I started January 8th and they gave me a “quick start” goal in the first 21 days. I didn’t imagine I’d come close, so I’d aimed for the goal to just qualify for 3 straight months to get a deal on stuff for myself. I’m hanging out at just under $33 to their goal with 2 days left. I can’t help but be excited about it. I had my first party last weekend and the weather was a bummer, but a friend showed up with her daughter. Along with my friend who convinced me to open my business, I actually had a good time. Family and friends went to my website and bought stuff, too! If you’re interested, you can look up @KeepWithJennDesi on Facebook. I’m pretty proud of myself.

Speaking of creations…look at this sign I made.

I’m hoping that this week is filled with more running and less snot. I guess even if that means a few runs on a treadmill or indoor track.

I’m really not looking forward to the end of the week. I’m not ready to talk about that yet.

Does the weather or your health affect your running? When it does, do you get impatient? How do you make the treadmill fun?

Winter Slump

The weather was warm the weekend of my birthday and I’d wondered if we’d have winter weather. Winter showed up in the Midwest. My little city had 8 inches of snow this past weekend followed by sub freezing temperatures, fog, and some freezing drizzle. I almost fell on my butt in my own driveway while laying salt down to make it less slippery. I feel the irony, but fortunately not the pain from falling.

I named this post “Winter Slump” because I have no desire to work out. Not just running. I don’t want to squat, plank, or even foam roll. My brain is set to, “blah, no.” I’ve forced myself a few times. I even made my puppy join me once for a quick mile around the block. It was actually fine and I enjoyed it, but it didn’t flip a switch in me to get back into it. I’ve averaged 5.5 miles a week for the past two weeks. That’s not much for someone who would average nearly 15 miles a week when not in training.

My point, and I have one, is that the drive to do it isn’t always going to be there. Sometimes, there isn’t anything to make you want to be active. Some days, there is no outward motivation. I have a challenge going on where I need to be active at least 25 days of the first 45 of the year, so I can’t miss too many days. It keeps me accountable and sometimes, I end up using “I have to,” instead of, “I get to.”

Don’t forget that the reason we get to be active is because we’re able. Taking your ability to move and challenge yourself for granted would be kind of a waste. Then, there’s how hard it is to start over after giving up. I am not a fan of starting over.

I read Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis for a second time. I highlighted the heck out of the pages of her book. Toward the end, she mentioned doing things you want to do and not worrying as much about what other people will think. Page 151 says: Do something daring this year and stop “reading” your version of reviews.

So, I took the leap and got myself a starter kit to sell Keep Collective Jewelry. Something I’d said I’d wanted to do since I went to a party and bought some silicone bracelets and charms. I’m still a little nervous and I won’t often use this as a place to sell to you, but I do want to show you what I’m talking about, so here is my very first design session link: Click these words.

This is one of my many arrows I like to wear.

That’s the rundown for my blog. I don’t want to do anything except hibernate and design jewelry, but I’m going to make myself until I want to do it again. It is what is good for me. That’s what it comes down to. Do what is going to help you meet your goals even when you don’t feel like it and you’ll achieve more than you thought possible.

Hebrews 12 with some 13.1 and 26.2 bling

It’s 2019

I have a soft start each year because my birthday is the 5th of January. That means today is my last day being 37 and I consider tomorrow a new year. There’s really nothing special about 38, but I plan to gather with friends to celebrate tomorrow night. That’s actually out of character for me, but so was running not so long ago.

I didn’t resume the streak, but I went and ran on New Year’s Day at Fleet Feet. I started out the run with friends and ran solo for the rest of it. I didn’t feel like it, but I ran 3 miles. Fortunately, I had my music on to keep my mind off the fact that I overdressed and wanted to run in 32 degree (Fahrenheit) weather in a sports bra because my shirt was toasty and I’d shoved my hat down my bra to cool my head off. I’m in the pink top and hat in the photo.

This was just my pace group for the run. There were so many people there, it was awesome!


I joined multiple challenges to keep me motivated through 2019. One has me running 1019 km for the year. My local gym challenge is 25 workouts in the first 45 days. I joined a Saucony challenge to run at least 12 times more than 1 mile in the month of January.

Of course I have a head full of snot, a voice stuck on monotone, and a sore throat to kick off all of that fun. I’m going to do what I can, though. This Monday, the kids will be back in school and I can make gym and run time during the school day.

Yesterday, I found out that my application to be a Nuun ambassador was accepted and I’m going to be #teamnuun this year. I’m so excited! I was introduced to it when I started training with Fleet Feet and I absolutely love it. I have used it before, during, and after races. It really comes in handy during the sweatiest months of the year. Not to mention, Nuun is great hydration when you’re fighting a stomach bug or self induced sickness from having one more [alcoholic] beverage.

SO COOL!

I have been ‘re-branding’ my social media recently anyway and trying to make it all come together like I hadn’t been before. That way, people don’t feel like they have a different person on each Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

I’m excited for my new year. I can’t wait to see what it brings! I have a notebook that I wrote “Jenn’s 2019 experiment,” on the front in metallic marker. I wrote an outline of my plans for the year. I’m not setting a weight loss goal. I’m going to love my body more the way it is. I’m going to write more and I’m going to read more. I’m going for less physical change and more mental shifts.

Did you set a goal for the year? Do you have a product you wish you could represent? Or currently represent? You’ll see “Nuun” in a lot of my race photos this year and perhaps some of my training pics, too.

Ideas! Nothing is written in stone…