Saturday, July 31, 2010

Done and Done!

Well I did it, both the water challenge and I kept my heart rate up for 30 minutes! I must confess I always drink that much water though, I have since I was young... What can I say? I'm a water lover and proud of it! I barely ever drink anything besides water (I rarely have soda or anything like that) So this weeks challenge wasn't all that hard for me :)

My heart rate challenge was a little tougher though, my plan has been to workout three days a week, so I still needed to keep my heart up for the other few days. I made it work with tons of yard work, walks and things like that on my off days, by doing all that, I was able to accomplish this week's goal!

I did one of the challenges!

Like I said on Wednesday, 1 out of 2 ain't bad, right? :-)

I drank tons of water every day, at least half my body weight in oz. And even though I hate the taste of water, I feel really good when I drink a lot.
I did have an advantage to this challenge, because Husband and I had started making sure we were drinking enough water about a month ago, so my body was already used to it. But, I still did it!

As for the heart-rate up for 30 min a day... yeah, not so much. I worked out 3 days this week, I'm doing it every-other day. And while I was going to try for every day I didn't on Tuesday... my muscles were too sore, so I just stuck with every-other day.

I feel good though, and I'm pumped to find out what next weeks challenges are!

Water Water Everywhere!

I am not a water drinker. One cup a week-maybe. I just don't like the taste, the thought, etc. I love blue drink. (powerade zero) But I took the challenge and drank 8 glasses a day. I feel like a water balloon. (A constantly peeing one.) I made it into a game. I could not leave work until all 8 glasses were gone. Everyone says my body will get used to all this water and I won't feel so bloated. I plan to keep it up after this week.

The workout. Not as hot as I would have wished. I went to the gym a couple times and to water zumba, but not a consistant 30 min a day. Something new to strive to!

I passed the challenge!!

I did it! I drank my water (ok, I may have missed a glass or two at the beginning of the week, but I made up for it later. It counts), and I got my heart rate up for 30 minutes each day!


But in the spirit of full disclosure, I ate an entire bag of chocolate chips at work. Also, one of my 30 minutes was not consecutive. On Wednesday I did three 10-minute sessions of cardio in the evening. Not ideal, but hey, I'm still counting it.

How do I feel?

Well, the water was definitely easier by the end of the week. I don't know if my body got used to the water, or I just got used to the constant peeing. Either way, I feel a lot better. And I think I ate half as much food as I usually do (which is good- I am a chronic over-eater).

Also, the exercise. I am sore. Very sore. Every day workouts meant my muscles didn't have time to recover in between sessions. But I have a lot more energy today than I've had in a long time.

I think what I need to do is exercise everyday, but alternate the muscle groups I'm using. Basically, I need to give my running/jumping jack muscles a break. I'll let you guys know how that goes.

Do I plan on keeping up the water? Oh heck yes. I can already see a difference in my skin, and for me that is worth the pee.

Friday, July 30, 2010

That wasn't all I wanted to say haha...

This week, I did pretty good. I went for jogs almost everyday. My army friend that I met asked me to run a 5K with her in September so it gives me that extra umph to work out more and get fit! Every other day I run (not jog) two minutes and walk 1 minute and keep repeating for about 20minutes. on the days I don't do that, I work out of the elliptical and do exercises with weights. I have been drinking lots and lots of water, to the point of where my boss is giving me funny looks... haha. I feel very energized and I look forward to doing a larger variety of things next week. WOOT! :)

If you are not peeing every half an hour, you aren't drinking enough!

My view of Water Zumba

Annie had a great idea to go to a Water Zumba class! And man did we love it!

The teacher was nice, and it was fun! The nice thing about working out in the water is that you don't feel sweaty, and I didn't really feel tired until it was done. I didn't feel like I was burning 400-900 calories. It was that good.
I would highly recommend this :-)
I've never done a stick figure drawing. You may need to click on it to read what we were saying :-)

The class we went to was 7pm, and we plan on going back many times!
So, did you like my Helena art? Annie's was better :-)

My take on water Zumba.

Chantel, Amber, and I went to a water Zumba class and it was soooo much fun!!! Ohh my heck! IT was seriously great. Here is my interpretation of it.

(Do you like my Helelna Art?)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Those Dirty, Rotten.........

I love dancing. And I hate everything else.

Well, every other kind of workout. They all feel like, well, work.


Then Amber had a suggestion. She put some workout DVD's in the mail, and I'm really excited to try them. They aren't dance themed, but maybe I'll feel like I'm in a class, or something.

Life in the Pitts

....That is, if I ever get them. According to UPS, they were delivered on the 26th. I'm thinking one of the neighbors is now enjoying my 30 day shred.

Dear UPS Man: I live in an apartment complex. Why the heck would you leave something by my door?

While this is still an open investigation, I'll have to find a different way to exercise (besides climbing trees and peering into my neighbors windows, looking for my missing pilates dvd).

Life in the Pitts

Any ideas?


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I ache in places I didn't know existed

I have only worked out one more time since I posted my introduction...
I know, that's not very impressive.
But I did it on Monday night, and I'm doing it tonight too :-)

The first time I did pilates I ached like you wouldn't believe the next day!
Not to mention the workout has made me cough. A lot. My dad says it's because by working out I loosened up some stuff that needs to get out, and by continuing to work out my cough will eventually go away.
I hope so...
Lesson: after working out, be prepared to cough a lot, and ache in places you didn't even know existed.

But now my cough has gotten a little better, and I was more flexible the second time doing pilates!
Sweet. Working out really does pay off.

Update on our challenges:
I have been able to drink at least half my body weight in oz every day so far! Woohoo!
However, the challenge to get your heart-rate up for 30 min a day I didn't do...
I did on Monday, and while I had the intention to on Tuesday, I was just too tired, and my thighs too sore, to even think about exercising without cringing.

But, I am planning on exercising and getting my heart-rate up every-other night!

So I'm not going to make that challenge. One out of two ain't bad :-)

I hope you guys are having more luck
Right now, I'm eating chocolate covered blue-berries and mentally preparing for water aerobics tonight.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


I love the internet. I love websites. I have a saved list of websites I check at least 3 times a day. 1st thing in the morning, I check my stuff. Sometimes I wake up really early, get the latest updates, then go back to bed.
So I thought I would share with you some good sites I have found to help you on your journey!

Here are some great sites to track your calories exercises etc. It is great to keep a food diary and to do it online is even cooler!


This site it cool! It has a lot of members and it is set up almost like a myspace where you have friends and encourage each other. It also gives you tasks to do to earn points twords a little icon on your page. Even though it is only an icon it's fun to try to upgrade!


My sister uses this one and loves it! I like that when you put food in your food diary it shows a picture of it!


This is the one I use. I have a fit bit. It is an electronic pedometer that clips onto my bra and counts my steps, calories, miles, etc. I add in the food and exercise. You also where it when you sleep and it tracks when you feel asleep, how many times you woke up etc. super cool! You can track my progress on my facebook when it pops up.

Eat Better America

Eating Well

Cooking Light

These websites are great for healthy foods and recipes. They also help you transform your recipes into healthier versions.
Eating well and cooking light are also magazines.

I hope you find some new great ideas from these sites. I love them!

Am I the only one?

I've peed 6 times today. And it isn't even noon yet.


Monday, July 26, 2010

Working out in the mornings...

I am not really a morning person, I see people all smiley and happy, maybe going for their morning jog and I think they are completely insane! I just don't understand, I can get up and start my day just fine but I'm not particularly happy about it. I have to be up for at least an hour and a half before I can eat breakfast (or I get sick...I'm not really sure why), I am usually pretty groggy and I am not a big fan of the sun for a few hours, so it is pretty understandable why I work out in the evening. Well I did... until a couple of days ago, my husband and I had the day off and that meant having way more time on my hands than I am used to. With all that extra time, I figured I would try and work out... After the grogginess had worn off, the workout wasn't half bad and I did feel really good, my mood was up my body felt great, I still wasn't sold on morning workouts but it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be... for the most part :) Then all the sudden I realized that I still had the whole day ahead of me and that meant getting ready all over again. I was sweaty and my hair was a mess and the thought of having to get ready once more, was very unappealing and that is what pretty much sealed the deal for me... I will continue working out in the evenings!

Last week I did really well with my workout goals, I worked out three times (that is what I was going for!) I also ate more fruit (and few more vegetables) than normal.

Have you had enough water?

I was going to save this post for Wednesday, but since one of our challenges is staying hydrated I decided to share this now :-)

A few months ago I learned something that has changed my life for the better.
I learned how much water my body needed, and I've started to implement that. I cannot describe accurately how good it feels to drink enough water...You'll have to try it for yourself ;-)

Since I started drinking the minimal amount of water I personally needed, I had more energy, I was more alert, happier, I could remember things better, and I could more easily focus (among other good things!)

Also when you drink a lot of water you're able to rid your body of toxins, your sweat doesn't smell bad, and it helps your metabolism.

Yeah... that's a huge list of positives!

Here's the thing. I don't like water. It tastes so gross to me... So, I add lemon. This masks the taste of water, helps me to drink more at once, and it's actually good to add lemon, because it helps to alkalize the water. Who knew!
Okay, this is a long list, but it is very important. Reading this list changed how much I drink each day, and by doing that, it changed my life. So, even though it's long, I hope you read it:

A mere 2% to 3% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math problems and difficulty focusing.
A 10% drop can be life threatening
Your body is 78% water at birth, and declines to 72% for an average young adult, and further declines to 50% among average elderly
Optimal health requires maintaining 78% throughout your life
The elderly are less sensitive to thirst since the sensitivity of the thirst center in the hypothalamus declines with age. As we age we must be diligent in our consumption of water
By the time we experience dry mouth, we are already dehydrated
Dehydration slows down the body's metabolism
Lack of water causes daytime fatigue
75% of the U.S. population is dehydrated to some degree
37% of the U.S. population mistakes thirst for hunger
Brain function requires water to function -the brain is 85% water
Brain neurotransmitters are carried through the nervous system through micro-stream waterways
90% of the interior constituents of every cell in the body are water
Throughout the day, water escapes from the body through perspiration, urine, feces, tears, nasal discharges, respiratory exhaled moisture, and other pathways
Losses are drastically increased by the consumption of the natural diuretics caffeine, theophylline, and theobromine found in beverages like coffee, black and green tea, and soft drinks
It is estimated that we lose 9 to 12 cups of water on a cool day even without exercising and not drinking the above diuretics
For optimal health this loss of water must be replaced through both drinking water and through the food we eat

It is recommended that you drink 1/2 your body weight in ounces in water a day. In other words, a 150 pound person would drink 75 ounces of water per day.
It is recommended that you drink the purest water that you can. Drinking distilled, or R.O. filtered water is a high priority, tap water is best avoided if at all possible due to the contaminants including chlorine.
(No, Distilled water does not leach the minerals from your body.)

What I did:
I got a water bottle, and figured out how many oz of water it contains, (a normal U.S. measuring cup holds 8 oz of water, knowing this helped to figure out how many oz my water bottle holds) then I did the math to determine how many times I would have to refill it in order to have the minimal amount of water my body needs a day.

Doing this helped immensely, because then it seemed less daunting.

Whew! Did you make it? I hope so.

I also hope this list inspires you to go out and drink more water!
This has helped me so much! I hope it helps you too :-)

On Wednesday I'll tell you how much sugar lowers the % of water in your body. It's scary.

Happy Hydrating! :-D

Weekly Challenge #1

All right girls, here it is: Our first challenge.

What are the challenges, you ask?

As you know, we have a grand prize for whoever shows the most improvement after 3 months.

But 3 months is a long time, and it's easy to lose our motivation. And so we will also have weekly challenges, to keep us going strong.

Here's how these will work:

Every week we will be given two challenges. These challenges will start on Sunday (usually) and go through the following Saturday.

The first challenge will be physical: Run 15 miles this week, do 700 sit-ups, etc.

(kidding, I would die. The real challenges will be less extreme, I promise)

The second challenge will be either a nutritional, or a self esteem challenge.

At the end of the week, we will each write a post explaining our experiences with the challenges.

BE HONEST. If you failed the challenge, tell us why. If you rocked it, tell us how. Most importantly, tell us how you feel about it.

This weeks challenges

Physical Challenge: Get your heart rate up for 30 minutes every day.

Nutritional Challenge: Be completely hydrated. 8 cups of water each day is a good place to start (if you want a more accurate idea of how much you need, go here).

Now get going!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Step 1:

I just bought a new sports bra. And I'm looking into exercise clothes. This is probably the most important part of working out.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Public Service Announcement:

Vegetables are dangerous. They look innocent in the baggie-but it's a lie. While cutting them, I almost took off my thumb. (Just imagine it. It's too gross to take a picture.) While bleeding to death, I was so surprised I started choking on another carrot as it went down the wrong pipe. It was a site. So eat healthy yes, but wear a bullet proof vest while doing it.

Helena takes the stairs

I took the stairs today at work. In heels. My office is 3 flights up, and I usually use the ancient elevator.

This might not seem like a big deal to most people, but my calves are saying otherwise.

And hey, I've got to start somewhere.

(Helena writes daily for Life in the Pitts. Check it out.)


Introducing Chantel

Hey everyone!
My name is Chantel, and I'm very excited about doing this with Amber, Annie, Helena and Katie :-) I love this, because we all have our own Reasons to Lose that are as unique as we are.
Hopefully people will be able to relate with us, and our stories will inspire others

I love to do things with family and friends, so this is a good way to have fun with them, as well as get me to stick to a healthier life-style.

As I said on the sidebar, I get sick often and it lasts for a long time. Which kind of sucks. I'm hoping that by being more active my immune system will be stronger, and I'll stay healthier. I also am hoping to become a little more toned.

My husband Michael and I have been drinking green drinks every morning for breakfast for the past month, and despite what you may think, they are awesome! I'll write more about those another time.

Recently Husband and I got a pull up bar, which I am excited about. I used to do 8-10 pull ups a day, but it's been over a year since I've done even one... I also got a copies of a few exercise videos -Pilates, and Cardio.

Here's the thing, I love chocolate. A lot. At least 72% of my day is spent craving chocolate and sweets.
Luckily, I crave it a little less since having my green drinks.

So far my plan is to keep eating healthier, drink lots of water, exercise and stay active by doing my videos and pull ups. I'll probably add to it, but that's it so far.

If I win I'll want to spend the money towards my new jewelry shop on Etsy! Feel free to check it out :-)

Today I decided to do some exercising (first time in ages) I did pilates for 30 min, then I did some pull ups, then I ate chocolate covered almonds... hey, it's a start!

(Chantel blogs at My Thoughts and Treasures. Check it out!)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Amber- Introduction

Hey guys! My introduction isn't as fancy as Helena's (I'm not as talented at stick figures...) but I wanted to let you all know who I am. My name is Amber and I started this blog to document and track my progress, two of my sister-in-laws started a similar blog to help lose their baby weight and I was inspired! I was originally just going to do it by myself but after talking to Helena, Annie, Chantel and Katie, I realized that something like this was in high demand and we decided to do it together!

My goals are to be healthier and workout regularly (losing some weight would be a nice side effect!) but losing weight isn't my top priority. A while ago I made a decision, I could either change how I look or change how I feel about how I look to be happy, I decided to chane my mindset. My body is going to change throughout life whether I like it or not and to really be happy, I need to find inner peace. Oddly enough as I worked on my self esteem I started to lose a little weight and eat a little better, but I feel my best when I work out regularly, I am just happier. My body isn't where I want it to be and I can see what I would like to change but it doesn't bother me like it used to. Like I said, I have been eating better and looking a little better but I still have a long way to go and that is what this blog is for!

My plan is to work out (I use work out DVDs, I like having privacy and the flexibility to do them whenever I want) at least three times a week. I am also going to up my fruit and veggie intake, I find when I am eating more fruit and vegetables, I am naturally drawn to other good food and drawn away from junk. My plan is pretty simple and I might modify it as we go but that's what I am doing to start!

For my prize, I would chose a $80 shopping spree (shoot - if I won, that would mean I would need new clothes!)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


As looking to those picture on the side, I unlike the other girls have a little more than 30 lbs to lose. I have tried everything under the sun-just not for very long. I get lazy and stop cutting veggies, stop going to the gym, eat whatever I make my husband etc. I know a lot of times it is just a mental struggle too. I have PCOS. My 1st doctor was not very encouraging when speaking to me about all of the side effects and that stuck with me. I hope that I will be encouraged by the other girls and we will have a blast along the way!

The Beginning

So, for my workout plan I decided to go with something more intense. Being in ROTC gave me a good knowledge of what I should do to get fit. Unfortunately, I totally said that to a chick in the Army and now she's making me run six miles with her tonight :/. I'll let you know if I make it down the block...

Helena: an introduction

Hi guys, I'm Helena. Yup, that hot blond one over there on the right. I am the older sister of Amber and Chantel, the sister-in-law of Annie, and the mortal enemy of Katie.

Watch your back Katie. You're going down.

I wasn't kidding in my bio. I really did gain 30 lbs in the past year. I'm super proud of that.

If you are interested in my method, it's pretty simple:

Eat everything you want to. And when you are full? Eat more because then
there's less to put away in the fridge.

Also, try to live across the street from a Steak N' Shake. And when you get a
2am craving for a Hershey's Dark Chocolate Shake? Run with it.

This stuff work's y'all.

It also helps if you have a desk job. By limiting your daily exercise to your infrequent trips to the copy machine, you will start seeing results in no time. Promise.

The downside to this lifestyle is you won't fit in your clothes anymore.

I know what you're thinking: "Hello shopping spree!!"

But really? When you are buying up a size (or 4), it's not as fun as you'd think.

 Amber talked me into this blog by bribing me with an $80 gift certificate. That's right- 1 of us 5 girls is gonna win, and the rest of us are paying for it.

I was trying to decide what my prize should be. Kurt (my husband) thinks I should ask for an $80 gift certificate to an all-you-can-eat buffet.

....As tempting as that is, I think I'll go with $80 certificate to the mall, so I can buy some clothes that fit!

 I don't really know where I'm going to start with my exercise program. I hate running. I go sometimes, but it isn't fun. Maybe I'll sign up for a dance class? Or do push-ups under my desk (you know, where I keep the cookies).

I'll keep you posted.

(Helena writes daily for Life in the Pitts. Check it out.)


Annie, age 29

About Annie

With everything I am responsible for at home, my ridiculous work schedule and my health problems, it makes it hard to keep working out on the front burner. But when I heard about this blog, I thought 'why not!'. I'm excited to get started and hopefully I won't die of exhaustion when this is all over!

Heléna, age 26

About Helena

I can't fit into my clothes! After getting married and being forced to eat my own cooking, I started gaining weight. The desk job didn't really help. I gained 30 lbs in the past year, and I can really feel it when I try to get dressed in the morning. I am really good at starting diet and exercise programs; but really bad at finishing them. And that's all about to change...

Body Fat Calculator

BMI Calculator

Height: feet
Weight: pounds


If your BMI is You are...
Below 18.5 BMI Underweight
18.5 - 24.9 BMI Normal
25.0 - 29.9 BMI Overweight
30.0 - 34.9 BMI Obese
35.0 - 39.9 BMI Obese
40.0 - 49.9 BMI Extremely Obese

Button #1

Life in the Pitts

Button #2

Life in the Pitts