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When you come out of the storm you won't be the same person that walked in. That's what the storm is all about.
The perfect word to define this phase of my life is perseverance. The dictionary definition is steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. That is my journey right now. It is difficult. It is frustrating. I am heading into week 3 and quite honestly this is where I typically start to give up. I am seeing no difference on the scale. My inches have not changed. I am still pouring myself into my clothes. Quite honestly it is so frustrating and discouraging some days all I can do is cry. 

But I can't just give up...not this time. Because you see I'm TIRED of this continual battle. I'm tired of working so hard just to give up and be right back to where I started. I'm tired of looking in the mirror and wanting to turn away from what I see. I will keep working. I will keep tweaking my nutrition. I will keep sweating. I won't stop trying even on the days where it seems impossible. I will remind myself that even if I feel like nothing is happening, I am getting stronger both physically AND mentally.

I will remind myself that my boys are watching. They are seeing me struggle and get frustrated but also see that mommy isn't giving up. Life's trials aren't always going to be easy. Sometimes they just SUCK. What is most important is what you learn through them and how you move forward. 

So today I am dusting myself off, regrouping, praying for strength and preparing for the coming week. I will not be defeated...even by my worst enemy...which of course, is usually myself. 

An arrow can only be shot by pulling it backward. So when life is dragging you back with difficulties, it means it is going to launch you forward into something great. So keep focus and keep aiming.

Week 1 Recap and Finding Focus

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Fresh Start in 2016
Week 1 is in the books! While it didn't go perfectly because you happens...I'm pretty happy with how I did. I tracked my food every day. I have been counting calories and 'loosely' following the IIFYM (if it fits your macros) plan. I do really struggle with macros as someone who prefers to eat as a vegetarian. I have a hard time hitting the protein goal without going over on carbs. I know it is a work in progress and there is a learning curve. So I'm going to keep at it. Last week I wasn't completely disciplined about weighing/ measuring everything. This week that is my big goal. Track all of my food and ensure that the portions are tracked appropriately as well.

Another thing I have learned this week is that if I don't have leftovers or food ready for me for the next day, I stand in front of the refrigerator or cabinet and end up eating nothing or something like cereal. My plan this week is to prepare/weight/measure all of my food for the next day the night before so that I can grab and go. No thinking. No excuses.

This whole process requires being patient (not my strong suit!) and learning as you go. Not every plan works for every person. I have to come realize that I need to find what works best for ME regardless of what works for someone else. My focus is building a healthy lifestyle that I can maintain. No more yo-yo eating. No more beating myself up. Take one day at a time.

You are strong!

My workouts are going really well. I'm SO SORE from starting to strength train again. It really is amazing how quickly you lose your strength when you take some time off. I love it when my boys join in with me too. They think it is fun to be active and workout. My oldest joined me for some ab work Friday night and kicked off his basketball season on Saturday. I never want them to struggle like I have so my prayer is that they learn to love these healthy habits now.

Veggie Quinoa Bake

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I know that this time of year is known for resolutions. Personally, I don't make resolutions. I like to think of it more in terms of goals. And I certainly don't make only goals that will take me an entire year to complete! That is a long time to stay strong, right? I like to make mini goals so that I can feel some progress along the way. SO...this month my hubby and I decided to not eat out/order take-out for the entire month. Now...this is quite a lofty goal. I know. But if we can stay strong and even make it 99% of the month I know that not only will it get me closer to my end goal of my healthiest body, it will also help the rest of my family stay healthy and save us some mula! Score!

So in order to keep things from getting boring, I am planning on trying at least one new recipe a week. Tonight's was a HUGE hit with the whole family so I had to share it with you! It will definitely be added to our rotation for the future. What I love most about it is that I was able to sneak some zucchini in there and my kids didn't even notice. Any time I can get extra veggies in their little bellies, it is a win for me. Enjoy!

Veggie Quinoa Bake Recipe

Veggie Quinoa Bake

Ingredients: (organic & non-gmo if possible)

1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cups vegetable stock
1 small onion, diced
1 red pepper chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 small zucchini, cubed
1 15oz can black beans, drained & rinsed
1 15oz can diced tomatoes
1 15oz can diced fire roasted tomatoes
1 cup frozen corn
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp pink Himalayan salt
1 1/2 cups shredded mexican cheese (optional)


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Almost every successful person begins with two beliefs: the future can be better than the present, and I have the power to make it so.
Do you know how you are just going along in your life, thinking nothing is different or has changed and then you see something that smacks the reality right in your face? That is where I'm at right now. I have been living in a state of denial. I have convinced myself that while I have had a 'few treats here and there' over the past couple of months, that my body hasn't changed. I have convinced myself that even though the scale has gone up a few pounds, it isn't that noticeable. But here is the reality...the camera doesn't lie. And while I DO NOT live and die by the scale, in this case when I am this far 'gone' it doesn't lie either.

Today I was completely humbled and honestly quite mortified and embarrassed as I stepped on the scale for the first time in too long. And even more disgusted when I looked at the pictures I had Steve take to use a starting progress pictures. I told myself even before taking them that I was going to post them no matter how bad they looked. I chose an outfit that was tight. I did not use a filter. Granted the lighting isn't the best, but this is the reality. This is my starting point.  Honestly, I want to hurl to think about posting this picture out there for anyone to see. It is so embarrassing. But I also know that just maybe, there is someone out there reading this that feels just like me. Maybe they are sick and tired of being sick and tired too.  Maybe I can inspire them to take that first step with me. It's scary. It's uncomfortable. Quite frankly, it's a pain in the butt!! It's HARD to change. I'm not going to sugarcoat it. But I'm over feeling sorry for myself. It's time to step up and make the change.
The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are.

My goal over the next year is to document my progress. I will share what is working for me and what doesn't. This isn't going to be a story that is sunshine and rainbows. NO ONE's story is without struggle and setback. It's important to set your expectations for reality. BUT that doesn't mean it can't be done. No more excuses. No more hiding. It's time to take care of me.

So here it goes.  My day 1 pictures. Soon to be my BEFORE pictures. ;) I'm scared. I'm excited. I'm apprehensive. I'm nervous about being judged. I'm afraid I will fail. But I also have have faith in myself to know that if I make the decision to do excuses...then no one can stop me. Let's do this.

Do not think of today's failures, but of the success that may come tomorrow.You have set yourself a difficult task, but you will succeed if you persevere; and you will find joy in overcoming obstacles. - Hellen Keller
Do not think of today's failures, but of the success that may come tomorrow.You have set yourself a difficult task, but you will succeed if you persevere; and you will find joy in overcoming obstacles.
- Hellen Keller

The Blackout

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Well, hello there. It's been a while, huh? If you haven't seen my post on my personal Facebook, I have kind of taken a little step back from the whole 'internet thing' and social media world. It really can get crazy and addictive, right? And quite honestly, I was losing myself to the madness. Sometimes you just have to take a step back and reevaluate.

So that is what I have been doing for the past couple of months. I have done a lot of praying about what is best for myself and my family. And honestly kind of getting back to WHY I started this blog and all of my posting in the first place. Sure there was the business part, but truly I wanted to be able to make a difference and also have the extra accountability for myself. I KNOW what it feels like to feel alone on your health journey even if you are surrounded by family and friends. I KNOW what it feels like when you are working your butt off and yet you are seeing no progress. That has been my life for the couple of years. So I knew it was time for some reflection.

It's funny because over the past week or so, I have been thinking even more about what the fate of my blog and the Facebook page would be. I have let them sit too long. It is time to either drop them or do something. Recently in church, we had a message all about helping others and making a difference. THAT is why I started doing this in the first place. Somewhere along the way I got so wrapped up in everything else that I lost my reason why.

So I've decided that I'm going to give this one more try. I want to be able to find a balance between sharing what I am doing, holding myself accountable and being able to hopefully help/inspire you and staying true to myself and family. I have promised myself that it will NOT take over my life again. Then there is also part of me anyone still there? Haha :) But that's ok. Because this also gives me some extra accountability as well.

I have still been working hard but the process has been slow and maddening.  I got sick at the beginning of December and have lost some motivation since I haven't been able to workout much.

The end of the year is the perfect time for reflection and resetting. That is what I am starting to do in preparation for a fresh new year. I'm starting a new workout program. I am making this the year my nutrition finally clicks. It is a daily struggle for me. I overthink, stress out over it, and then eventually give up. Not this time. I am more than ready for a change. Now that I am finally feeling relatively healthy thanks to my naturopath, I can start focusing on other areas. with the new year is to a fresh start. A fresh new beginning full of possibility. The road will no doubt be long, there will be struggle and it won't be easy, but in the end it will be worth it.